The Things That You Do

33: I Thought You’d Say It First

Tucking a piece of blonde hair behind her ear, Alexa blinked a few times, trying to soothe the stinging in her eyes. She had been at it for a while, with her boss wanting her latest drafts at the end of the day, she had spent hours staring at the screen of her laptop in order to perfect them, and she was looking forwards to the end of the day, even if she didn’t have many plans for the evening. She was merely looking forwards to the opportunity to get away from her laptop for a while. Rubbing her eyes, she let out a tired yawn before she leant forwards in her seat again, intently scanning the image which filled the screen.

“Am I interrupting?”

Alexa, who’d been completely focused on the screen of her computer, looked up at the sound of Lionel’s voice, her blue eyes settling on where he stood in the doorway, a familiar timid smile on his lips.

It had been a few days, after Isabel had gone into labour, a little over a week had passed, and with Alexa having been busy with work, she and Lionel had found it slightly difficult to spend time together, something which meant that his arrival at her office was more than slightly surprising. They had spoken a lot, since they’d started to date, a nightly phone call was practically a guarantee between the two of them, but she was surprised to see him, even if it was pleasantly so. She had thought that he’d call or text before he dropped by.

“Uh...No” Alexa stumbled out “But I am surprised to see you. What are you doing here?” she asked as she walked towards him, greeting him with a soft kiss.

Lionel smiled into the kiss, holding onto her for a few seconds longer than she had planned, before he ducked back, lifting up his hand to show off the bag of food that he had bought with him. “Your office is on my way home” he pointed out boyishly “And, with your deadline coming up, I knew you’d be working still, so I thought I’d drop this off with you. I don’t plan on sticking around” he added.

Alexa blinked a couple of times, surprised by the gesture, before she shook her head, a soft smile on her lips. “You came all the way here for that?” she asked as she reached out, taking the bag out of his hands.

Lionel smiled bashfully. “I’ve not seen you in a little while” he noted “But I don’t want to get in the way, so I thought I’d just drop this off and then get out of your way” he explained sheepishly. He knew that he had caught her off guard, the way that she had stumbled out here greeting had confided it to him, but he hadn’t been able to resist dropping in on her, even if he did plan on it being a flying visit, for him, a couple of minutes with seemed better than another nighttime phone call. He knew that it couldn’t be helped, between her work schedule and his, getting time together had been hard over the past week, but he was keen to see her, even if it had only been a few days. He had grown to like spending his time with her.

Alexa, who’d moved to place the bag down onto her desk, smiled a little at the sheepishness in his voice before she turned around, looking up at him softly. “That’s pretty sweet of you” she mused.

“I have my moments” Lionel replied with a half-smile “But I should be going. I’ll call you later?” he suggested.

“You could do that” Alexa mused as she took a step towards him, her hands gently settling on the back of his neck “Or you could stick around” she added, peeking up at him through her eyelashes.

Lionel tilted his head. “Don’t you have deadline?” he asked.

Alexa nodded. “I do” she confirmed “But the work is mostly done aside from a few finishing touches, and that means I can probably spare half an hour to have dinner with you. You can leave if you really want to, but it’s been a few days. Are you sure that you’re not interested in sticking around for a while?” she posed as she pressed a teasing kiss to each of his cheeks.

Lionel feigned thought for a second before he cracked a smile, something which caused Alexa to push herself up onto her toes, stealing a quick kiss before she pulled away from him, making her way back towards her desk. “Why don’t you take a seat?” she quipped playfully, gesturing towards the seat which sat on the other side of the desk.

Lionel rolled his eyes, but couldn’t stifle his grin as he sat down, something which made Alexa grin back at him, glad that he had showed up.

“How is the new baby?”

Alexa, who’d been poking at the last pieces of her food, smiled a little at Lionel’s question before she reached into her jacket pocket, slipping her phone onto the desk. She was enjoying herself, since Lionel had shown up at her office door, she had felt relaxed and comfortable, and whilst she knew that she still had to finish off her work, she was glad that he had shown up. It had given her a break that she had been in need of. “He’s doing really well” she enthused “He looks just like Marco did when he was a baby” she added, showing off a picture of her and the newborn which she had saved onto her phone.

Lionel smiled at the picture. “He’s adorable” he fussed “Did they settle on a name yet?” he posed, flicking his eyes back up to Alexa’s.

Alexa nodded, her expression softening slightly. “They’ve called him Antonio” she mused “After his grandpa” she added softly.

Lionel noticed the shift in her voice before he wordlessly reached across the desk, gently offering her hand a soft squeeze.

Alexa glanced at their hands for a couple of seconds, allowing a silence to pass between them, before she peeked at him shyly, a faint smile on her lips.

Lionel marveled at her soft smile before he lifted her hand to his lips, allowing him to press a gentle kiss against it. “You’ve got a pretty smile” he fussed warmly.

Alexa snorted out a shy laugh. “You’re just saying that” she argued, playing with his fingers shyly as a soft blush spread across her cheeks.

“I’m not” Lionel countered “You’ve got a beautiful smile, Alexa. It’s one of the things that I love about you” he babbled.

Alexa blinked. “One of the things you what about me?” she squeaked.

Lionel was quiet for a second as he thought over his words before he shook his head, offering her a shy smile. “One of the things I love about you” he repeated.

Alexa merely stared at him, something which made him chuckle lightly before he ducked his head, kissing her hand gently once more. “I was sure that you’d say this first” he mumbled “I mean, you’ve had a lot longer than me to get your head around your feelings, but I...I love you, Alexa” he breathed gently.

Alexa’s eyes widened a little, but she didn’t say anything, something which made Lionel let out a soft sigh before he pressed another kiss against the back of her hand. “I should leave you to it” he mumbled, wanting to break the thick silence which had settled over the two of them “I’ll call you later?” he added as he shuffled back to his feet.

Alexa simply watched him.

Lionel glanced at her, briefly contemplating insisting that she spoke, before he turned around, taking a couple of steps towards the door.

“I...I love you too”

Lionel stopped in his tracks before he wheeled around, his brown eyes meeting Alexa’s blues which stared up at him. “What?” he spluttered.

Alexa quirked a shy smile. “I think I said that I love you too” she babbled.

Lionel stared at her wide-eyed, allowing her words to hang around them for a few long seconds, before he took a couple of strides across the room, his hand quickly cupping the back of her neck before he gently tugged her head forwards, meeting her halfway in a soft kiss which had a wide smile on both of their faces.
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Thanks to mslou1, FootieJo and Jayme112234 for the comments :)