In the End

32: You Don’t Have To Sound Surprised

Gently tapping his hand against Ariella’s front door, Gerard leant his head forwards, tiredly resting it against the door. It wasn’t overly late, with Barcelona having only traveled across the city to play in the derby against Espanyol, he had gotten to Ariella’s apartment slightly earlier than he had been expecting, but still all he wanted to do was head inside and relax for a little while, something he knew contradicted the plans that Ariella had made for the two of them that evening. It had always been the plan, with his birthday having been a couple of days previous, they’d always intended to go out that evening in order to celebrate, and whilst a small part of him had been looking forwards to seeing what Ariella had in mind for their date, another part of him merely wanted to curl up on the couch and fall asleep for a while.

Lifting his hand, he offered the front door another soft tap before he shuffled backward slightly, watching as Ariella pulled the door open, a soft smile gently spreading across her lips. “You’re early” she quipped as she stepped back out of the doorway, encouraging him to step into the apartment after her.

Gerard, who’d turned to knock the front door closed, rolled his eyes playfully. “You don’t have to sound so surprised” he quipped “I mean, we’ve been back together for a few months now and I think I have shown up either on time or earlier for every date” he added as he stepped up beside her, greeting her with a soft kiss on the temple.

Ariella’s cheeks warmed a little at the feel of his lips against her temple before she turned, moving to press a soft kiss against his cheek before she slipped her hand into his. “Come on” she murmured “I’ve got something that I want to show you” she added, gently tugging him through the apartment.

Gerard followed her, a small frown pulling at the corner of his mouth, before the scent of food reached his nose, something which caused him to gently pull Ariella to stop, turning her so that she looked up at him. “Are you cooking something?” he posed “I thought...”

“That we were going out?” Ariella finished for him, a small grin on her lips.

Gerard admired her smile for a few seconds before he nodded sheepishly, something which caused Ariella to squeeze his hand, her grin softening slightly. “I thought about it” she mused “I mean, I even made us a reservation at a pretty fancy restaurant, but then I thought about it some more and came to the conclusion that this was a little more us” she added, gesturing towards the dining room which she had set up for the two of them.

Gerard followed her gesture, admiring the setting she had created for the two of them, before he shook his head, a soft laugh falling out of his mouth.

“I kept the reservation” Ariella babbled, not quite sure what to make of his laugh “I mean, if you’d rather go out, I kept it. I’ll just need a little while to change into something a little more suitable” she added, sparing a shy glance down at herself.

Gerard, who’d turned back to look at her, smiled a little at the shy expression which had spread across her features before he took a pace towards her, his hand gently cupping her cheek. “Have I ever mentioned that I love you?” he mumbled, his thumb lightly skimming along her cheekbone.

Ariella breathed out a soft giggle, trying to hide the fact that her cheeks had flushed pink, before she shook her head, pulling away from him slightly. “Sit down” she noted, gently nudging his side “I think the food is about ready” she added before she padded out of the room, heading back towards the kitchen.

Gerard watched her out of the room for a couple of seconds before he grinned to himself, wordlessly fussing about how well things were going. He had been worried, after their interaction with his parents, and what Ariella had overhead his mother say, he had been slightly concerned that she would allow it to bother her and start her worrying about their relationship, but he was pleased that she hadn’t, even if it had only been a couple of days. He was pleased that she still seemed to be as confident in them as he was.

~#~
Toeing his shoes off of his feet, Gerard quietly settled down at the foot of Ariella’s bed, a soft yawn tumbling out of his mouth. It had been a good night, after they’d enjoyed dinner together, he and Ariella had curled up in front of a couple of films before they’d opted to head to bed, and the defender had to admit that he’d had a wonderful time, even if the night had been littered with Ariella nervously assuring him that they could still head out and do something else. He had really enjoyed the night that they’d had. It was quiet, the night had simply been about the two of them, and Gerard wouldn’t have had it any other way.

Smiling to himself, he neatly tucked his shoes away at the end of the bed before the sound of footsteps reached his ears, causing him to lift his head, his blue eyes settling on Ariella who’d padded back into the bedroom, a sweater of his pulled around her shoulders. Looking her up and down, he quirked a soft smile to himself before he gently pushed himself up, moving to settle his hands on her waist. “You still wear this?” he posed, pressing a soft kiss against the back of her neck.

Ariella, who’d been trying to fix her dark hair into a loose ponytail, jumped a little at the feel of his lips against her skin before she nodded, a familiar pink tint on her cheeks. “I was cold” she mumbled “If you’d rather I take it off, I can” she added, peeking at him shyly.

Gerard looked down at her, his blue eyes searching hers, before he shook his head, a smile on his lips. “It looks good on you” he mused “I mean, I think you look beautiful in most things, but I kind of like you in that sweater. Besides, it is your my sweater” he added, gently adjusting it around her shoulders.

Ariella watched him fix the jumper around her shoulders for a couple of seconds, noting just how sweet the gesture was, before she lifted her head slightly, allowing her to press a soft kiss against his lips. Gerard startled slightly, not quite expecting the soft kiss, but he responded to it quickly, kissing her gently for a few seconds before he gently pulled back slightly, allowing him to carefully push the sweatshirt off of her shoulders. Ariella watched him push the jumper off of her before she smiled up at him shyly, something which made Gerard smile back her at her warmly before he pulled her back into another kiss, one that Ariella didn’t hesitate in returning.
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Thanks to FootieJo and Jayme112234 for the comments :)