The Things That You Do

57: He Convinced Me To Show Up

“You could just stay here, you know”

Alexa, who was staring at the screen of her laptop, rolled her eyes a little at Lionel’s comment before she lifted her head, offering him a small smile. It wasn’t the first time he had suggested it, with Barcelona due to play their last home match of the season that evening, Alexa was keen to head to the stadium for the match, but Lionel was keen to offer her an out, even if it was a tradition of theirs for her to attend the last home game of the season. He wanted to at least offer her the opportunity to duck out, not wanting her to become uncomfortable. He knew that he was fussing, with Alexa only approaching six months pregnant, the chances were that she would be fine, but still he wanted to offer her the opportunity to stay home, even if he did always look forwards to her attending the last game. He just wanted to look out for her.

“I know I could” Alexa mused simply.

Lionel, who was stood in the doorway, tilted his head. “But?” he posed.

Alexa smiled up at him impishly. “But I don’t want to” she replied “It’s the last home match of the season, Leo, and I always go. I mean, I showed up last year even though we were hardly talking. I think I can probably make it this year” she added, readjusting herself in her seat on the floor.

Lionel watched her for a couple of seconds, smiling a little in amusement at her decision to sit on the floor, before he took a few steps forwards, settling down on the floor at her side. “I never really thanked Gerard for convincing you to come last year” he mused “What did he say to make you show up?” he asked as he shuffled a little closer to her, gently settling his arm around her waist.

It wasn’t something they talked about a lot, with both of them keen to focus on what was coming rather than what had happened, conversations about the way that their relationship had started were few and far between, but a small part of him was a little curious, even if it was water under the bridge. A small part of him wanted to know what it was that Gerard had said that had convinced her to show up at the match the previous year.

Alexa, who’d moved to close her laptop down, shrugged a little before she turned, cuddling into his side slightly. “He didn’t say anything special” she noted “He sent a couple of texts to start off with, saying hello and asking how I was, and then he asked if I planned on coming to the game. I told him that I hadn’t really thought about it, which was a lie, but then he said that you wanted me there and that you’d spent most of the day composing and deleting the same text over and over again, and I thought I ought to go. We needed to talk, even if it was just to get a little closure, and I thought it was probably time to just get it over with” she explained, her voice a little cautious.

Lionel, who’d been absently running his hand up and down her side, was quiet for a few moments before he shook his head, a bashful smile appearing on his lips. “He told you that?” he posed.

Alexa quirked a small smile. “Is it not true?” she quipped.

Lionel chuckled, rubbing the back of his neck sheepishly. “It’s not impossible” he quipped “But I didn’t know that Gerard had told you that. I might need to speak to him about that” he added teasingly.

“Don’t be too hard on him” Alexa quipped as she leant up slightly, pecking his lips sweetly “I mean, you might be a little embarrassed about it, but it did get me to show up to your game, and me showing up to your game kind of got us here” she added, gesturing between the two of them briefly before she lowered her hand, resting her palm against her bump.

Lionel looked down at her hand, smiling a little at the sight of her bump, before he lifted his own hand, covering hers softly. “I’m glad he convinced you” he mused “I know I made a mess of things. When you first told me how you felt, I...I acted like an idiot and I hurt you, and I hate that I did that, but I am so glad that you listened to Gerard and came to that game” he added as he leant over, pressing a soft kiss against the top of her head.

He knew that they had had their moments, for the almost year that they had been dating, they had spent a lot of their time learning to be a couple, but Lionel had to admit that he was proud of the way things had progressed between the two of them. They were good together, they both felt comfortable and happy, and Lionel wouldn’t have changed it, even if things had moved a little quicker than he’d been expecting. He was pleased with where they were.

Alexa’s cheeks warmed a little at the feel of his lips against the top of her head before she looked up, lightly brushing her lips over his. “I am pretty glad that I showed up too” she mused with a light smile.

Lionel returned her smile warmly, preparing to say something, before he felt a slight movement against his palm, something which caused him to lower his stare, looking down at her bump. “I think he’s probably pretty glad too” he teased boyishly.

Alexa rolled her eyes playfully at his joke before the sound of a phone’s alarm filled the air, causing Lionel to let out a small groan. “I set that to tell me when I ought to get moving” he mused “You’re still set on coming to the game?” he posed as he hauled himself back up to his feet.

“I wouldn’t miss it” Alexa replied “And, before you start worrying, I’ll be sat with Sofia” she added, cutting off his inevitable question.

Lionel rolled his eyes, mumbling playfully under his breath about just looking out for her, before he offered her his hand. “You need a hand up?” he posed.

Alexa smiled and placed her hand in his, allowing him to tug her up to her feet before he pulled her towards him, kissing her gently. Alexa smiled into the kiss happily for a few long seconds before she pulled away, her blue eyes shining playfully as they peeked up into his darker ones. “I have one request” she quipped, her tone light and playful.

Lionel lifted an amused eyebrow. “You do?” he played along.

Alexa nodded. “I love you” she mused “But maybe this year, you don’t surprise me with a surprisingly romantic gesture. I don’t need you proposing on the touchline” she quipped teasingly.

Lionel scoffed impishly, but didn’t refute the idea, instead he simply leant towards her, kissing her warmly for a few seconds before he drew away, musing that he would see her after the game was over.

He knew that it wasn’t going to happen soon, despite a few hints from their friends and families, he and Alexa had yet to broach the topic of marriage or whether it was something they both wanted, but they were getting there, something which pleased Lionel. He didn’t want to push it, with their son due in only a matter of months, the last thing he wanted to do was add something else to their plate, but it was on his mind, even if it was only a thought which had passed through his head once or twice. He couldn’t deny that he had thought about it.