There Was You

21: A Good Place To Start

Rubbing his eyes sleepily, Iker quietly padded down the stairs, his ears filled by soft sound which emanated away from his kitchen. It had been a few days, after Marisol and Nuno’s wedding had past, Iker had been quick board a flight back to Madrid, wanting to spend a couple of weeks in the Spanish city before he headed back to preseason training, and Riley had gone along with him, something which had surprised him, even if he had been the one to extend the invitation. He had half expected her to shoot down the idea the moment it fell out of his mouth. It had been a long shot, suggesting the two of them take a few days out to go to Madrid was something he had expected Riley would shy away from, but he had been pleasantly surprised when she’d said yes, even more so when she had showed up at his door in Porto the previous morning, a small suitcase at her feet.

Stifling a yawn in his hand, he padded through the house before he reached the kitchen, his stare landing on Riley who padded around it, setting food up on the kitchen table. Quirking a small smile, he stood quietly for a few seconds, just watching her before he cleared his throat softly.

Riley, who’d been pouring juice into a glass, startled a little at the sound before she turned, offering him a timid smile. “Buenos dias” she greeted softly.

Iker breathed out a soft laugh, not missing how shy she sounded, before he stepped a little further into the room, gesturing towards the table behind her. “What’s this?” he asked, stopping just in front of her.

Riley glanced up at him briefly before she shook her head, looking back down at her feet. “It’s breakfast” she mused “I mean, I thought it was the least I could do since you’re allowing me to stay in your spare bedroom” she added.

Iker’s lips quirked upwards. “You didn’t have to do that” he noted.

“I know” Riley replied, her cheeks glowing a soft shade of pink “I just... I wanted to. I mean, it was sweet of you to let me stay here, and I guess I just...I’m talking too much, aren’t I?” she interrupted herself, noticing the amused expression on Iker’s face.

Iker laughed gently. “Maybe a little” he quipped.

Riley shook her head. “Sorry” she muttered “I guess I am just trying to say thank you” she added.

Iker leant forwards, kissing the top of her head softly. “You’re welcome” he mumbled into her hair.

Riley closed her eyes, lingering in the embrace for a few seconds, before she stepped back, settling into one of the chair beside the table. “Are you going to join me, Iker?” she quipped, smiling up at him shyly.

Iker smiled back at her. “I’d love to” he mused.

“So, what’ve you got planned for the next few days?” Iker asked as he stepped out onto the patio, his eyes landing on Riley who was perched on the edge of the pool, her feet dangling in the cool water. She had been out there for a little while, with the two them still a little uncertain around one another, they’d taken to trying to give one another space whilst they were staying in the same house, but after nearly half an hour of sitting in the kitchen, waiting for the right moment to head outside, Iker had given in.

It was something they needed to figure out, despite having been friends for months, they were used to saying goodbye at the end of the night, but that wasn’t an option for them, not since Iker had opted to offer Riley a room in his house for as long as she was in town. She had fought him on it, insisting that she could just as easily get a hotel room, or spend the few days she had with her parents, but Iker had been insistent. He hadn’t invited her to Madrid just to see her as sparingly as he did when they were back in Porto. He had invited her because he wanted to see more of her, to get to know her, and experience a snapshot of what it would be like if things worked out in the way he hoped they did.

Riley smiled a little as she turned to look up at him. “I’ve got a lot of free time on my hands” she mused “Aside from a barbecue at my parents’ home at the end of the week, I’ve not got anything else planned. I just thought it would be nice to get out of Porto for a bit” she added, glancing back down at her lap.

Iker, who’d moved to sit down beside her, briefly contemplated asking if she was alright, before he shook his head, smiling a little to himself. “You’re more than welcome to spend as much time here as you want” he noted “I mean, this pool is pretty nice when the sun hits it” he added.

Riley turned back to him, an eyebrow lifted playfully. “Are you just trying to get me into a swimsuit, Iker?” she asked.

Iker’s eyes widened, his cheeks growing pink. “No” he spluttered “Not that I think you wouldn’t look good in one, I am sure that you would, I just...I was trying to say that you don’t have to try find reasons to not be here. I want you to be here” he added.

Riley’s expression softened into a timid smile. “You do?” she asked gently.

Iker, who’d been staring down at the water shyly, nodded his head. “Why do you think I asked you to come with me?” he asked “I thought...I don’t know, I thought a few days of just the two of us would be a good place to start. I mean, with the wedding and everything, it’s been a busy few weeks and I thought...” he trailed off, not quite sure what he wanted to say.

Riley watched him for a few seconds before she shuffled a little closer to him, her hand hesitantly covering his which sat on the patio.

Iker looked up at the feel of her hand on his, his dark eyes mirroring her grey ones for a few seconds, before Riley lifted her hand up, gently cupping it around his cheek before she leant into him, brushing her lips over his. Iker stilled little, slightly surprised by the kiss, but before Riley had the chance to pull away, he gently weaved his fingers into her hair, keeping her in a tentative and soft kiss. Riley smiled gently against his lips for a few seconds before she pulled away, looking up at him through her eyelashes. “I think you’re right” she mused softly.

Iker smiled bashfully. “Yeah?” he asked.

Riley gently brushed her fingers against his jaw, smiling up at him softly. “There’s still a lot things we don’t know about each other” she mused “And I’d like to start learning them. I don’t know, off the top of my head, how you like your coffee for example, and you don’t know how I like my tea” she added.

Iker leant into her touch. “No sugar” he muttered “And just a splash of milk” he added.

Riley laughed softly. “Two sugars” she replied “And a lot of milk” she added.

Iker smiled before he leant forwards, kissing the top of her head gently as Riley cuddled into him, hoping that the few days that they had together in Madrid was the start of their relationship moving on.
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Thanks to Twisted;;Symphony, FootieJo and Jayme112234 for the comments :)