102 - Emma
Not quite how I'd imagined meeting Lucien's family, but alas.
"I'll be here when you come back," I smile, handing him the keys he's left on the coffee table, "just drive safe, alright?"
He looks like he could implode at any moment, just full of worry, so I feel like I have to make sure he doesn't do anything dumb.
"Will do," I kiss him on the lips and watch him as he leaves.
It's surprising how little I know about Lucien's family. I've met his father, but only by accident, and apart from that there's barely anything I'm aware of. His mother loves museums, his relationship with his father is far from ideal and he apparently has a sister named Eschieve.
I kill some time cleaning around the appartment. There's dishes from last night's dinner still on the counter, so I put those in their right place, vacuum the living room and make the bed in one of Lucien's guest rooms, assuming that's where Eschieve will be staying.
It's quite a far drive from Lucien's appartment to the airport, so he probably won't be back for quite some time.
Of course I take that time starting to question my decision to stay, because his sister has just ran away from home and probably wants to spend time with her brother. How would I even introduce myself? Does he want her to know I'm his girlfriend, or should I simply introduce myself a friend? A good friend, maybe?
Should I just go home, let Lucien know I changed my mind? But then again, maybe he would really like me there, because it must be super stressfull for him to suddenly have his sister around.
All of my indecisiveness results in me stress-baking with some ingredients I find in Lucien's kitchen cabinets. They're walnut brownies, and I make a caramel drizzle on top. It makes the house smell nice and sweet, and it also takes my mind off of the internal discussion I've got going on.
I pour myself another glass of wine and wipe down the counter, returning the kitchen into its familiar 'no one ever really uses this' state. My kitchen is always quite messy, but mess doesn't match with Lucien's interior, so I try my best to ensure it keeps the bachelor vibe it had when I first stepped foot into the appartment.
I send some texts back and forth with Kenna, who's nervous about the wedding - again. It's not far from now, and she's sure there's still so much more to do. I try and calm her down as well as I can, but it's Kenna we're talking about here so it never fully works.
I promise her I'll come by her place tomorrow, and we can go over the table settings one more time. How hard can it be to make sure no one sits next to their lifelong enemy?
Just as I'm about to consider cutting the brownie to take a first, sneaky bite, I hear the elevator come up.
I'm nervous immediately. Do I look awkward, out of place? I must. What do I do? Do I just stand in the kitchen like I'm doing right now, and if so, where do I put my hands? Do I quickly move to the couch and pretend I'm just casually reading a book?
"Emma?" I hear Lucien's voice call out. Too late to move now, I just have to face that I probably look like an absolute idiot.
"In here," I reply back, my voice slightly shaking. Why do I get so nervous about things like this?
Probably because I really, really like Lucien and there's only one time to make a good first impression. From the way he acted before he left, he really cares about his sister, so her opinion of me probably matters a lot to him. If she dislikes me, I can wave my relationship goodbye.
He comes into the kitchen, his sister enters quickly after. The resemblance in their face is noticable, she's a younger, feminine version of her brother.
Her eyes look sad to me, but there's no sign of tears. Either she hid it really well, or she hasn't cried. Maybe the whole thing around emotions is a family thing.
Lucien must have told her I'd be here, because she doesn't look surprised to see me.
"Hi," I don't quite know what to do right now. Do I move away from the counter and attempt to shake her hand, maybe even hug her? Or do I just stand here and let her make the first move. "I'm Emma. A.. friend of Lucien's. Good friend." Yes, you totally made that awkward, good job. My eyes meet Lucien's, trying to figure out if what I've just said has been a total waste of time and energy because he already told her all about me. He just nods.
"Enchanté," she smiles weakly, looking around the room. "Can I go take a shower, Luce?"
He just nods, smiles and then ruffles through her hair for a second. "You know where to find everything, right?"
With a simple, "yes" she wanders off, leaving us in the kitchen.
I feel like I can finally breathe again, as if I was holding my breath ever since the elevator came up.
Lucien immediately holds me in his arms as he presses a kiss on the top of my head.
"How are you feeling?" I ask him, nuzzling my face into the fabric of his shirt.
"Weird," he answers, honestly. I can hear his heartbeat as he speaks, his breathing slowly calming down. "She's just really upset, and I'm glad she trusts me enough to feel safe here, but.. It's just not ideal, especially if our father gets word of this."
There isn't really any advice I can give him, because I've never been in this situation. "It's definitely not ideal, but you of all people should know how to deal with situations that are far from that. I mean, look at us."
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