103. - Lucien
That makes me chuckle and I pull her a little closer, the tension of the car ride back slowly seeping out of my bones. "Yeah, look at us. A fucked up rich white boy and his 'good friend'."
She punches my chest, not hard enough to hurt me, but it makes me laugh. "I wasn't sure if we were going to tell her!"
"I know, I know." I chuckle, kissing the top of her head again and swaying us softly. "I'm sorry I never told you about her. Our relationship has always been... strained. I haven't seen her since this summer and between then and now talked to her a grant total of one time."
"You don't have to tell me about it if you don't want to." Emma offers and I consider that for a moment. If anything, tonight has made me realise how much I've kept a secret about my family. How much I intend to keep a secret for a while longer. She deserves this at least. I listen closely to make sure the water is still running before I pull Emma to the bar, sitting on one of the stools and keeping her in my arms and between my legs. I'm not ready to let go yet and luckily, she doesn't seem to mind.
"I'm not sure if there's much to tell." I mutter, playing with her dangling curls. "She's seventeen, so there's nearly a ten year difference between us. Not to mention that my father never really hid his preference for sons. Not just in our family; it was just always obvious he preferred boys over girls. Can't imagine that had a great effect on her well-being - she's grown up to be rebellious and defying." I keep quiet for a while, memories floating through my head, very few of them good. I let out a deep breath, resting my head on Emma's shoulder. I want to tell her more, but I find myself unable to get any more words out of my mouth. Emma doesn't push. She just plays with my hair, her elbows resting gently on my shoulders. "Let's just keep it at that the Du Castellon family dynamic would be a psychiatrist's dream." Then, after another heartbeat: "I know I shouldn't complain. I'm a rich white guy who is mostly straight with a pretty face - I'm checking all the privilege boxes. But you know, a loving household would have been nice from time to time."
Emma latches onto something I didn't even realise I said, with a teasing note to her voice that releases some of the tension in me. Again. "Mostly straight?"
I snort, followed by a pained groan. "Can we save that for another night? I didn't plan on spilling all my life's secrets tonight."
She laughs; I feel her head tipping back and the rise of her chest. Then she pulls back a little so she can lift my chin with a finger, making me look at her. "Just because you're privileged doesn't mean you don't have a right to complain." She plants a kiss on my lips. "Thank you for telling me."
I put my forehead to hers. "Thank you for being so understanding about this whole thing."
"Are you kidding? I knew what I signed up for when I started dating the great Lucien du Castellon - never a dull day with you." She grins and I can't help but do the same.
"Je t-" Before I can even properly start the second word of that sentence we get interrupted by Eschieve calling my name. I give Emma a quick kiss before going to check on my sister. She's standing in the guest bedroom, looking at the contents of her two suitcases that already have been thrown about. "J'ai oublié d'emporter un pyjama."
"Tous ces vêtements et vous avez oublié la chose la plus élémentaire?" I tease her, but she just glares back at me.
"Je n'étais pas exactement dans le meilleur état d'esprit lors de l'emballage. Puis-je vous emprunter quelque chose?" She's still wrapped in only a towel, but doesn't seem bothered by it. My eyes flick over her body, noticing various new tattoos. I decide not to bring it up, because I don't have anything to say about it. I don't doubt she's heard father yell enough about them.
"Bien. Je vais te chercher une chemise. Tu as besoin d'autre chose?"
She shakes her head, looking back at all the clothes. I'm not sure how long she intends to stay, but I sure hope it's not the amount of time it takes to get through all of these. I'm more than willing to shelter her for a while, but it's clear that we need to talk about this. Soon.
"Lucien?" She says, just when I'm about to leave. I turn around on the doorstep.
"Emma va-t-elle rester la nuit?" There seems to be a hint of distaste in her voice, but that might just be me reading into it. Eschieve rarely approves of anything I do.
I shrug, trying to look casual. "Elle pourrait. Nous avons une réunion tôt au travail demain et il se fait tard."
To that she just nods, turning away from me. I manage to keep in my sigh until I'm out of earshot. After fetching her a tshirt and bidding her goodnight, I reunite with Emma in the kitchen. It's the farthest away from the bedrooms, so it has the smallest chance of being overheard. She makes her way into my arms before I can even begin pulling her close.
"Do you want me to leave?" It's a genuine offer, to give me space, to give me time to be alone. I know that being alone will cause me to spiral, so I shake my head.
"No, I don't. But I understand if you want to. You might have signed up for me, but this is a whole other level."
Her smile is so warm that it makes my entire body tingle. "I guess I just have to move into the guest bedroom before she wakes up. Good friends don't sleep in the same bed."
I smirk, kissing her forehead. "I suppose they don't. It does remind me though - I'm going shopping for my suit for Kenna's wedding this weekend. Care to tag along? Gabriel and Matthew are also coming."
"How did not sleeping in the same bed remind you of that?"
"Because it was a painful reminder that I still can't show you off at that wedding." I tip up her chin to kiss her lips this time. "And that I'll have to look at you in this stunning robe de demoiselle d'honneur and keep my hands to myself for the entire day."
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