When We Were

Eighty One: You Two Do What You Want

Idly twisting her engagement ring around her finger, Emilia stared across the living room, vaguely aware of the conversation which flitted between Jordi, Lionel and Samia. She couldn’t seem to focus, the conversation, and the kiss, that she had had with Isaac were entirely preoccupying her mind, and she couldn’t shake it, no matter how much she wanted to be present for the first time she had seen her brother, sister-in-law and nephew in months. The distraction was seemingly impossible to avoid. She had wanted to tell Lionel immediately. When she had sped away from Isaac’s home, she had driven with the intention of blurting it out almost as soon as she had stepped over the threshold, but the words had died on her tongue the moment Jordi had strode into the hall, pulling her into a tight hug. She couldn’t tell her brother because she knew that if she did, then there would be no stopping him heading over to Isaac’s home and doing something he’d regret, probably in front of Luca.


Emilia blinked a couple of times, bringing her eyes to focus on Lionel who sat on the floor, looking up at her with a frown. “Sorry?” she asked.

“Leo said that you’ve already been looking at wedding dresses” Samia clarified, seeing the confusion on Emilia’s face “What’ve you got in mind so far?” she asked with a smile.

Emilia felt her stomach drop slightly, but she was quick to try and mask it with a smile. “I think I’ve got a vague idea” she mused “There’s a magazine around here somewhere with a few folded down pages for inspiration. I’ll go and find it” she added, hurrying to her feet before anyone had a chance to object. Trying her hardest not to look like she was rushing, she made her way out of the room and towards her bedroom, letting out a long sigh of relief when she was able to sink down onto the bed’s mattress.

Gripping the duvet in her hands, she closed her eyes and blew out a shaky breath, trying, and failing, to ease the dull ache in her stomach before she heard the door close. Slowly, she allowed her eyes to open before she looked up, her expression softening at the concerned look on Lionel’s face. “I’m...”

“You’re not fine” Lionel interrupted quietly, knowing exactly what she was going to say “Even Jordi knows it and he’s the most oblivious person in the world” he added, quirking a faint, teasing smile.

Emilia just nodded her head slowly, resuming the slow, anxious spinning of her necklace.

Lionel stepped close, gently prying the jewelry out of her fingertips. “Amor” he breathed gently.

“Not now” Emilia protested “Not with Jordi here. He’ll blow things out of proportion and do something stupid, and I...I really don’t want that. Please, Leo, let’s just leave it for now, OK?” she insisted.

Lionel’s forehead furrowed, momentarily confused, before the lightbulb went on. “Isaac” he murmured.

Emilia seemed to shrink a little in her seat. “Leo, please” she repeated gently “We’ll talk about it later” she added.

“What did he do?” Lionel asked.

Emilia just shook her head.

“Emilia” Lionel prodded as he knelt down in front of her, gently pushing her hair off of her face “What happened?” he asked softly.

Emilia’s eyes searched his for a second, the knot in her stomach twisting, before she closed her eyes, letting out a soft sigh. “We...we talked” she said, her voice just about audible.

Lionel gently pushed her hair back again, wordlessly encouraging her to keep talking.

“We had to” Emilia kept speaking quietly “Talk. We left things badly” she added.


“We talked about everything” Emilia kept talking like Lionel hadn’t said anything “Our entire relationship, his feelings for me, how I felt about him, and then...then he kissed me” she stumbled over the words, feeling Lionel’s hands still as they came out of her mouth.

Lionel rocked back slightly, his jaw slightly slack.

Emilia opened her mouth to say something, but stopped herself as the bedroom door swung open, allowing Jordi to amble in with Maisie on his hip. “Look, there is mama and papa” he chirped “I’m sure one of them would love to change your nappy, Maisie” he added, gently bouncing the little girl on his hip as she giggled.

Emilia spared a glance at Lionel, who was just staring down at the floor in shock, before she stood up, gently taking Maisie out of her brother’s arms. “Do you need a new nappy, princess?” she cooed softly.

Maisie just grinned her adorable smile, babbling happily at her mother.

Emilia pressed a kiss against Maisie’s copper hair before she took a step towards the door.

“Did you stop it?” Lionel’s voice was distant, quiet.

Emilia’s steps faltered.

“Stop what?” Jordi asked, his head tilted slightly in confusion.

“Jordi, go” Emilia instructed firmly.

Jordi let out a slightly confused laugh. “What’s happening?” he asked.

“Did you do something to make him think that you wanted him to kiss you?” Lionel asked as he looked up at her for the first time since Jordi had appeared at the door.

“Kiss her?” Jordi spluttered “Who the hell is...Isaac!” his voice grew louder as the other man’s name fell out of his mouth.

“Did you?” Lionel pressed.

“We were just talking!” Emilia replied exasperatedly “I swear to you, that was it. What do you think I was doing?” she asked, her voice softening a little.

Lionel just stared at her.

“I am going to kick his ass!” Jordi hissed “I mean, who the hell does he think he is? Do I really need to break his nose again for him to get the point that he can’t just keep messing you around, Emmy?” he asked.

“Jordi, just shut up!” Emilia yelled back, only to let out a soft sigh when Maisie made a little noise of discomfort. Shifting her hold on the little girl, she gently pushed her fingers through her hair before she kissed the top of her head, glancing over it at Lionel.

“He kissed me” she insisted “He initiated it and I ended it. I didn’t lead him on. Why would I, Leo?” she asked, her voice growing softer.

Lionel just stared at her, something which made Emilia shake her, letting out a soft sigh. “Think what you want” she muttered “I am going to change Maisie’s nappy and then go and give my apologies to Sam and Felix. You two can do whatever you want” she added before she carried Maisie out of the room.

Lionel gently pushed himself as Emilia pulled the door to after her, wordlessly signaling that she didn’t want him to follow.

“What are you going to do?” Jordi prodded after a few long silent moments.

Lionel just shrugged. “I have no idea” he admitted.
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Thanks to FootieJo for the comment :)