The Things That You Do

85: Good Influence

Tiptoeing quietly back into the bedroom, Lionel padded back over towards the bed, slipping back beneath the duvet. It was early, after hearing Zachary’s grumbles through the baby monitor which was settled on the end table, he had ducked out of the room to check on the little boy, but with him having settled back to sleep relatively quickly, Lionel had taken the opportunity to head back to his own bed, wanting to enjoy the first quiet morning that he had had in a while. It had been a busy time, with Barcelona’s season reaching its conclusion, he had spent a lot of time training and travelling, and he was keen to make the most of that morning, even if it would be a few weeks before he headed back to training. He wanted to make the most of the time.

Allowing a sleepy yawn to fall out of his mouth, he shuffled across the bed slightly before he gently placed his arm over Alexa’s waist, his hand splaying out across the small bump that she carried. Smiling at the feel of it, he gently leant forwards and pressed a tender kiss against the back of Alexa’s shoulder, something which caused her to stir slightly before she blinked her eyes open, sparing him a sleepy glance over her shoulder. “You know that you don’t have to go anywhere this morning, right?” she teased, her voice heavy with sleep.

Lionel quirked a small smile before he nodded, his fingertips gently brushing her blonde hair off of her shoulders. “I know” he mused “But I did have to get out of bed to check on Zach” he added.

“I didn’t hear him” Alexa replied, trying to stifle a yawn which was trying to fall out of her mouth.

“He was only grumbling” Lionel mused “I changed his nappy and settled him back down for a little longer, meaning that neither of us really has to get up right now. We can just lay here for a while” he enthused as he turned onto his back, resting happily against his pillow.

Alexa spared him a slightly amused glance before she shook her head, moving to cuddle up against his side. “You seem pretty excited about a lay in” she quipped, settling her head against his chest.

Lionel wrapped his arm around her waist before he shrugged. “It’s been a while” he noted “I’ve been pretty busy lately, and for the last couple of months, you’ve been waking up early thanks to morning sickness, and I guess I am excited to just do nothing with you. I can’t remember the last time we just did nothing together” he explained.

Alexa, who’d been quietly tracing shapes against his chest, quirked a sleepy smile before she leant up slightly, encouraging him to tilt his head up so that she could press a sweet kiss against his lips. “I love you” she murmured quietly as she settled back down, her head resting contently against his chest as she quietly closed her eyes.

Lionel watched her for a few moments, listening as her breathing evened out, before he offered her a little squeeze. “I love you too” he mumbled before he leant back, quietly drifting back to sleep himself.

~#~
“You should have woken me”

Alexa, who was quietly pacing the kitchen with Zachary in her arms, smirked a little at the sound of Lionel’s voice before she turned around slightly, watching as he made his way into the kitchen. It was late for them, with nowhere else for them to be, they’d taken full advantage of the opportunity to lay in, but when Zachary had started to wake up, Alexa had been quick to get out of bed, even if she had been enjoying cuddling with Lionel. She knew that staying in bed all day wasn’t an option.

“I thought about it” she quipped “But you got up with him first thing and I thought I’d get up this time. I didn’t think we’d see you for a while yet” she added as she stepped towards the table, settling Zachary down into his chair.

Lionel, who was still trying to wake himself up, shrugged. “I woke up” he quipped “And I spotted that you were gone so I figured I ought to get up. Have you been up for long?” he posed.

“Fifteen minutes or so” Alexa replied as she stepped towards the stove, stirring the pan which sat on top of it.

Lionel watched her for a few seconds before he stepped across the room, his arms gently wrapping around her waist.

Alexa let out a small squeak, slightly surprised by the soft hug, before she shook her head, offering him a crooked smile over her shoulder.

Lionel returned her smile gently before he leant down, kissing the top of her head sweetly as a comfortable silence settled over the two of them.

Alexa leant into his embrace for a few seconds before the sound of a phone vibrating flittered into their ears, causing Lionel to let out a soft sigh. “You don’t have to answer it” he murmured gently, his arms still settled around her waist “I’m sure it if is important, they’ll just call the house phone to get a hold of you” he added.

Alexa let out a light laugh before she turned, kissing him quickly. “I’ll be right back” she quipped before she stepped away from him, making her way out of the kitchen.

Lionel watched her out of the room before he walked over to the table, settling down into the seat beside Zachary. Quirking a small smile, he greeted the little boy with a light kiss on the head before the sound of Alexa re-entering the room reached his ears, causing him to look up at her. “Was it something important?” he posed.

“I had a couple of texts” Alexa replied “One from my mother and one from Marco” she added as she pulled out a seat, sitting down opposite him.

“What’d they want?” Lionel asked.

Alexa simply shrugged, something which caused Lionel to reach his hand across the table, offering her arm a reassuring squeeze. “What was it?” he asked, his voice warm and encouraging.

Alexa glanced at him, briefly contemplating telling him that it was nothing, before she let out a soft sigh. “My madre wants to introduced us to Jose” she noted “She’s been trying to set it up for a little while, but with us being busy and things between her and Marco still being strained, she put it off, but she’s decided to go for it now. She’s invited us over for dinner on Friday night, me and you, Isabel and Marco, and Marco’s already insisting that he doesn’t want to go. He wants me to back him up and not go either” she explained quietly.

She knew that it was something which still bothered Marco, despite things between him and Madeline having improved slightly, Alexa knew that Madeline’s relationship with Jose still irked her older brother, and she knew that he wasn’t likely to get over it quickly, something which was more than likely to cause problems in their family.

“He’s still not warming up to the idea?” Lionel posed, his thumb brushing against her arm gently.

Alexa shrugged. “It’ still a pretty touchy subject so we don’t really talk about it” she quipped “I know that him and my mama talked, but he’s still not thrilled about it and I highly doubt that he’s going to want to meet Jose, something which is almost certainly going to upset madre because she’s completely smitten with him” she added, shaking her head.

“And what about you?” Lionel asked “Do you want to meet him?” he posed.

“I’ve already met him” Alexa replied “When I went over to speak to my mother, I bumped into him. He seemed nice enough but...” she trailed off, mumbling the end of her sentence under her breath.

Lionel squeezed her arm gently, something which caused Alexa to flash him a small grateful smile. “You’re going to tell me that we ought to go, aren’t you?” she asked quietly.

Lionel smiled, a little amused that she had guessed what he was about to say. “I don’t think it is the worst idea” he mused “I know it’s still strange, but he’s the guy making your mama happy and she wants him to meet the two most important people in her life in you and Marco. I am not promising that it would be weird, because it will be, but you owe her that given how quickly she embraced me. She’s always been supportive of you, Alexa, of us, and I think we ought to extend her the same courtesy. It’s one dinner, a couple of hours, I think we can handle that, right?” he encouraged.

He knew why she was cagey, despite the conversation that she and Madeline had had, the idea of the older woman dating was still unfamiliar to Alexa, but he wanted to encourage her to go, even if it was likely to be awkward and strange. He wanted her to at least give Jose a shot at proving that he could be good for her mother.

Alexa hesitated for a moment, mulling over his words, before she huffed out a playful sigh. “Why are you such a good influence on me?” she grumbled, peeking up at him.

Lionel laughed warmly. “Is that your way of saying we’ll go?” he asked.

Alexa nodded. “You’re right” she quipped “My madre has always been supportive of us and it’s only right we give Jose a shot” she added.

Lionel squeezed her arm gently before he leant over, stealing a quick kiss before he made his way towards the stove, checking on the food that Alexa had left cooking. Alexa watched him go before she nodded herself, assuring herself that it was the right thing to do. It wasn’t likely to go off without a hitch, with Marco around, things were likely to get awkward when they visited Madeline, but she knew that Lionel was right when he had said that it was the right thing to do. Her mother had been good to them, since Lionel had come into Alexa’s life, Madeline had been nothing but kind and welcoming towards him, and it was only fair that Alexa and Marco gave Jose a chance, even if it wasn’t likely to be the most comfortable evening. It was the right thing to do.
♠ ♠ ♠
Thanks to FootieJo and Jayme112234 for the comments :)