Burn Us Down

17: Home

Gently swinging her bag off of her shoulder, Olivia pulled her purse out from inside, quickly locating the key card which would allow her back inside of her hotel room. It was something she knew that she would never get used to. Although it had been her choice to move away from Melissa’s spare bedroom and into a local hotel, she knew that she would never find herself used to it, but she was more hopeful that it would only be a temporary measure than she had been previously, even if she hadn’t quite gotten to the point of actually packing up the things which littered her room. The couple of weeks that had passed since she had taken Max to Gerard’s match had almost convinced her that she was soon going to find herself moving back home. It hadn’t been anything special. The two of them had merely spent time together and talked, but it had made Olivia hopeful, even if she hadn’t quite expressed it to Gerard. The more time they spent together, the more they talked, the closer she got to asking him if he minded her coming home.

Pushing a piece of hair behind her ear, she plucked the card out of her purse before she looked up, her eyes widening a little as they landed on Gerard who was stood in front of her door, a familiar impish grin lighting his features. Feeling her steps stutter, she took a second to admire his smile, one which looked easier than many of those which had lit his face in the past few weeks, before she ducked her head, hiding a soft smile of her own. “I don’t remember giving you my room number” she quipped.

Gerard laughed. “It’s amazing what you can learn with a phone call” he retorted “The receptionist thought it was pretty romantic that I was planning on surprising you” he added.

Olivia rolled her eyes playfully as she moved to step around him, slipping the key card into the lock. “I could have come to you” she said as she pushed the door open.

Gerard followed her as she walked inside. “It’s not me surprising you then, is it?” he chirped playfully.

Olivia didn’t want to laugh, but she couldn’t quite stop it, something which made Gerard grin. There were still moments that were uncomfortable. A couple of good weeks hadn’t smoothed over all of the cracks and hadn’t removed all of the uncertainty that still lingered between the two of them, but it did feel better, something which was a relief to Gerard. He still thought about his words carefully, he still second guessed things which, until those pictures had come out, had been instinctive, but he felt easier around Olivia, and he could tell that she felt easier around him.

Shaking her head, Olivia moved to drop her bag down on top of the desk before she turned back to look at him. “What were you thinking, then?” she asked.

Gerard, who’d been watching her quietly, quirked a soft smile before he lifted his shoulders in a lazy shrug. “I didn’t exactly think that far ahead” he mused “But, I remember you saying something about the room service being pretty good here, so…” he trailed off, his grin widening a fraction.

Olivia arched an eyebrow, briefly contemplating pointing out that there was a kitchen at their house that they could have just as easily used, but the grin on Gerard’s face stopped her. It was his usual one, bright and cheerful, but it was also hopeful, a reminder that as normal as their exchange had felt, they were both still trying to find their way back to where they’d been before. Studying him for a second, she saw his slightly nervous fidget, his hands slipping in and then out of his pockets like he didn’t quite know what to do with them, before she smiled at him softly. “I’ll grab the menu” she mused.

Gerard just about kept himself from spluttering out a surprised ‘really?’. Instead, he toed off his shoes before he plopped down onto the bed, making himself comfortable against the headboard.

“Did you finish the cheesecake?” Gerard called towards the bathroom, glancing around at the array of plates which were spread out at the foot of Olivia’s bed. He knew that she had been hesitant. He’d seen the way that she had taken a moment to look him over when he’d made the suggestion, but he was pleased that she hadn’t laughed the idea off. It was simple, a film they’d playfully argued about played in the background, filling the awkward silences whilst they ate and conversation lapsed, and it felt like it had been a good night, even if it had been spent in a hotel room was opposed to their own living room.

Olivia poked her head around the bathroom door, smirking. “You were the one who was gushing about how wonderful it was” she replied.

“It was good” Gerard mused “But nothing on yours, nena. You know that” he added, winking at her playfully.

Olivia rolled her eyes as she laughed. “You probably finished it” she called as she ducked back out of view.

Gerard perused the scattering of plates for a second before he leant back against the headboard, allowing his eyes to survey the rest of the room. It was comfortable enough, when Olivia had told him that she wanted to get out of Melissa’s spare bedroom, he had insisted that she choose the best place she could find and that he would cover the bill, but it still felt strange. Her stuff was all over the room. Her coat was hung over the back of a chair, her make up was scattered across a shelf in the bathroom, and it was undoubtedly like her bedroom in the apartment that she had had before she’d moved in with him, but that was what made it feel so odd to him. He couldn’t quite remember what nights at her apartment had been like before they’d become nights in their shared bedroom.

“Did you find some?”

Gerard visibly startled as Olivia’s voice broke him out of his thoughts, something which made her laugh. “I was only in the bathroom” she joked.

Gerard blinked a couple of times as he turned to look at her. “Sorry” he mused “I was somewhere else” he added.

“Where?” Olivia asked as she returned to her spot on the bed.

Gerard shook his head, a slow smile brightening his features. “Nowhere important” he quipped.

Olivia prodded his side. “Where?” she asked again.

Gerard sighed. “I was trying to remember your old apartment” he admitted “I can’t really remember how we used to do this before we lived together” he added, gesturing between the two of them.

“You used to freak out my neighbour” Olivia chirped.

Gerard laughed loudly. “I didn’t freak him out” he replied “I created mixed feelings for him. He was a massive Barca fan, so he loved me for that, but he also had the biggest crush on you, so me being your boyfriend was…difficult for him. He never knew whether to ask me for an autograph or try and punch me in the face” he added brightly.

Olivia shook her head, smiling at him fondly. “I still maintain that he was just nice and had no interest in me” she quipped.

Gerard snorted, but didn’t say anything more, allowing a moment of quiet to pass between them before he turned back to look at her, his smile softening just a little. “When are you coming home?” he asked gently.

Olivia fiddled with a lock of her hair, causing Gerard to gently pry it out of her fingertips, tucking it behind her ear. “You are coming home, aren’t you?” he asked gently.

“Of course I am” Olivia replied gently, not even hesitating for a second.

“When?” Gerard asked.

Olivia wanted to say ‘soon’, but knew from the look on Gerard’s face that that answer would do more harm than good. “I’m paid up until the end of the week” she replied softly.

Gerard nodded his head slowly, trying not to let the hope show on his face.

“I’ll be there when you get home on Sunday night” Olivia said “Maybe not in our room, but…”

“I’ll take it” Gerard insisted, grinning.

Gerard’s grin won Olivia over, causing her to smile back at him, even if it wasn’t quite as bright and sure as his. She wanted to go home, even if they weren’t quite back to themselves, and she couldn’t put it off. She was worried it was too soon, that being back in the same house all the time would only do more harm than good if they did it took quickly, but she couldn’t deny that it was where she wanted to be.
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Thanks to Twisted;;Symphony for the comment :)