Burn Us Down

75: He’s Not Worth It

“Gerard, come on. The sooner we get there, the sooner we can leave”

Gerard let out a soft sigh as he smoothed down his shirt. He knew that he was dragging his feet. When Olivia had disappeared downstairs to see the twins off with his parents, he’d told her that he’d been right behind her, but he had yet to venture downstairs, despite nearly twenty minutes having passed. He didn’t want to go. The prospect of spending an evening with Melissa, who’d never made a secret of her dislike of him, and Nicolas, who he hadn’t warmed to, was one that Gerard would have been more than happy to avoid, but when Olivia had asked him, he hadn’t quite been able to find the words to say no.

It wasn’t something he was going to enjoy. Melissa had written him off years ago and had shown little to no sign of wanting to try and make amends with him, but she had shown signs of wanting to try and repair the damage between her and Olivia, something he knew meant a lot to his fiancée and had ultimately convinced him to go. Olivia wanted things to be good between them, and if it took spending an hour or so at Nicolas’s birthday party, then Gerard would do it for Olivia.

Hearing Olivia’s footsteps coming up the stairs, he quickly moved to pick up and put on his jacket before he stepped into the doorway, meeting her just as she prepared to step through it. “I’m ready, see?” he chirped, grinning at her warmly.

Olivia took a step back, her eyes looking him up and down, before she offered him a small smile. “You look nice” she mused.

Gerard ‘s cheeks warmed a little, but he didn’t say anything, allowing a moment of quiet to pass between the two of them before Olivia reached a hand up, running it back through his hair. “We really don’t have to stay for too long” she murmured quietly “We’ll give Nico his gift, stay for about an hour, and then say we have to get back for the twins. It’ll be alright” she insisted, her hand gently settling on his cheek.

Gerard turned his head, kissing her palm softly. “I know it will be” he said, smiling gently against her skin.

Olivia kept her hand in place, enjoying the feel of his smile against her skin for a moment, before she gently dropped her hand, offering it back towards him. “Let’s get it over with” she quipped.

Gerard didn’t hesitate, placing his hand into hers and allowing her to tug him along as they made their way towards the stairs.

“Did you lose someone?”

Gerard, who’d been helping himself to another drink, lifted his head, his stare settling on Nicolas who stood on the other side of the counter, flipping the cap off of his own drink. He had been trying to avoid him. After he and Olivia had arrived and placed the gift they’d bought for Nicolas into his hands, the defender had taken to skirting around the room, deliberately trying to avoid being caught in conversation with Melissa’s boyfriend, and he was a little irked that he’d finally caught up to him. He didn’t quite know how long he could play nice for.

Nicolas smiled. “Olivia?” he prodded.

“In the other room” Gerard replied “She’s catching up with a group of her and Melissa’s friends from when they were kids” he added.

Nicolas nodded his head, taking a sip of his beer. “There’s a lot of people here I don’t even know” he announced, swallowing the drink “Mel’s trying to introduce me to as many people as she can. She’s pretty excited” he added.

Gerard nodded, sipping his own drink in place of saying anything.

“It was almost a relief the first time I met Oli and you” Nicolas continued talking, unperturbed by Gerard’s silence “There was someone I recognised. She’s not changed at all, either. Olivia’s still as gorgeous as ever” he added.

Gerard’s smile was forced as he nodded. “She’s very beautiful” he agreed “I’m very lucky” he added fondly.

Nicolas grinned. “I can say from experience that you’re lucky” he mused.

Gerard twisted the bottle in his hand, shaking his head. “I’m not going to be baited by you, Nico” he replied evenly “You and Olivia kissed one time, years ago. You’re just trying to stir up trouble because that’s what you do, right?” he added.

Nicolas held up his hands innocently. “I was just trying to say how lucky you are” he mused “I mean, Mel talks about it all the time. She’s already picked out a guy to set Oli up with when you screw up. She’s sure it will be ‘when’ too, not if” he added.

Gerard let out a quiet, bitter laugh. “She’s been waiting for me to fail since I walked into Olivia’s life” he replied “She didn’t like me the moment I walked into her house for the first time, and it’s never changed, so I’m used to her expecting me to fail. You can join the club too, if you want to, it’s not going to make a difference to me. I love her, and no amount of Melissa’s dislike or your stirring is going to change that” he added.


Gerard pulled his stare away from Nicolas, settling it on Olivia who stood over the other man’s shoulder, a soft apologetic smile on her face. “We’ve got to get going” she mused “We need to pick the twins up from your parents” she added.

Gerard set his bottle down and took a step towards her.

“You could do better, Oli” Nicolas chirped “He’s not worth the aggravation he’s caused you” he added.

Gerard’s steps stopped, but Olivia was quick to take a hold of his hand, tugging him towards her before she stepped past him, her eyes fixed on Nicolas. “I’m pretty happy where I am” she mused “And even if I wasn’t, it would be absolutely none of your business. It’s nothing to do with anyone but me, and him, so please, keep your little quips and opinions to yourself” she added before she turned, recapturing Gerard’s hand so that she could pull him out of the house.

Gerard followed without hesitation, only stopping once they’d reached their car. Quirking a small smile, he shifted his hands to her waist before he leant down, kissing her forehead and nose before he met her lips. “Thank you” he whispered between soft kisses “I’d have done something stupid” he added.

Olivia’s fingertips weaved through the hair at the back of his neck as she smiled against his lips. “He’s not worth it” she whispered “He’s not the first person to tell you that you’re not going to keep me around, and he’s just another person who’s wrong. You’ve got me, Gerard, and I am pretty sure that I am not going anywhere any time soon” she added, leaning back ever so slightly so that he could see her face properly.

Gerard’s eyes roamed across her features before a tender smile kicked up the corner of his mouth. “Only pretty sure?” he asked.

Olivia lifted a shoulder in a playful shrug, something which made Gerard laugh gently before her pulled her close to him again, hugging her tightly. Olivia’s arms wrapped around him, more than happy to hold him close, before she leant up towards his ear, mumbling a soft ‘I love you’ before she touched a kiss just below it.
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Thanks to Jayme112234 for the comment :)