"Matthew, put the damn cat down!" Emma is trying to sound stern, but it's not quite coming across when she falls victim to a fit of laughing before even finishing the sentence. 
"No! I'm taking him! Clearly you've not been giving him enough attention!" Matthew presses the cat against his cheek; Frank looks awfully confused, but doesn't resist. It's past one and our friends are only just starting to leave after we all just had a little too much to drink. Not drunk, but everything is that extra kind of funny. Out in the hallway, Kenna and Tom are hiccuping with laughter, hands pressed to their mouths in an attempt to muffle it. Gabriel is, to no one's surprise, encouraging Matthew to steal the cat; the creature is receiving head scratches and Brie is giving it all kinds of French endearments in a high-pitched baby voice. 
"Frank's been getting plenty of attention." I assure them both, reaching out to grab the cat. Matthew dodges out of the way. 
"You've heard him yelling all night! Animal abuse is what it is!" 
I take another step closer. "Matthew. Put down the cat. No one has to get hurt."
Karma comes back to bite me in the ass; in that moment, Frank decides he's had enough. He thrashes himself out of Matthew's arms, leaving claw marks in the process and using the poor man's wrist as a launching mechanism he lunges at me; to anchor himself he sinks his claws into my shirt and therefor my chest, crawling up to my shoulder to jump down from there, abandoning us to flee to the bedroom. 
"Well," Gabriel breathes after a moment of stunned silence. "That was fun." 
Out in the hallway, Kenna and Tom have stopped trying to be quiet and are now on the floor gasping for breath.
"I've changed my mind about stealing the cat." Matthew says meekly, after we all errupt into laughter. Last hugs are exchanged at just when a distant church bell rings it to be half past one, the door closes. Emma works her way into my arms with a content sigh, her head falling against my chest. 
"I had a really amazing time." I mutter as I kiss the top of her head. Her hair still smells of the hairspray used on set this morning, even though that feels days away. 
"So did I." A finger prods my chest, causing me to wince. "I think Frank broke skin." 
"I protect that cat from being cat-napped and that's how he repays me." I chuckle, watching as Emma undoes the buttons of my shirt to assess the damage. "Maybe we should've let them take him. Ow! I'm kidding!" Emma gives me a dangerous look after an aggressive poke in my side, but it quickly softens when she pushes my shirt off my shoulders. It's a few minor scratches  barely having bled enough to show through my shirt, but enough to been given grief over had the photoshoot been tomorrow. Emma's fingers on my bare skin make me shudder; a second later I have seized up against the wall, lips crashing on hers. She yelps in surprise, but doesn’t hesitate wrapping her legs around my waist, dress riding up to expose her soft skin. Lucky for us Frank dodges out of the bedroom on his own accords when we stumble in with our bodies entangled. Emma's grin widens when I toss her down onto the bed; I lose my trousers before crawling over her. 
"Can you imagine that a few weeks from now…" I mutter, kissing her neck between words. "We'll be doing this in our apartment? We'll have two bedrooms, enough space on the couch, plenty of room in the kitchen…" I grunt when Emma tugs my hair. "I might even suggest the piano…" 
"Are you planning to defile our entire apartment, du C?" She asks, but I can hear her grinning. With another rough yank on my hair she pulls my face back to hers. 
"Absolutely I do, miss Middleton." 

It takes shouting her name three times and then tapping her on the shoulder for her to finally hear me over the sanding machine she's handling. 
"I got us coffee." I tell her as she pulls off the protecting earmuffs. Her face is speckled with dust and the turquoise paint we used to paint the guest bedroom today, making her look extra adorable when she grins. 
"Weren't you supposed to just get us more painting tape?" She teases as she takes the paper cup from me. 
"You know me, I'm a rebel." 
We sit down on one of the rolls made by the old carpet that we ripped out. It's been our makeshift couch for a few weeks now, until our new one finally comes in next week. We're really nearing the end now. 
"The kitchen is coming on Monday," Emma says to recap, as we often do when taking a break. "And they're also coming to put in the floors. We've got one delivery of furniture on Tuesday and then another two on Wednesday." 
"I thought we were going to move that? Tuesday's delivery is going to require tons of assembly,might be easier without another load of boxes."
"I tried calling earlier, but they wouldn't pick up. But yeah, it'd be great if it can be moved to Friday." She sips her coffee, looking around. "Except the living room we're nearly done with painting, right?"
"Yes, mostly trims now. Guest bedroom is done, so is the master bedroom. Kitchen needs some work but the plaster needs to dry first, so that's for tomorrow."
"Do we know when the bathroom is coming?" 
"Next week, I think. I'll call them to check." 
She leans her head on my shoulder with a smile. "I can't believe it's really almost done." 
"Neither can I." I chuckle. "But talking furniture: I booked an appointment at the piano store tomorrow. Do you want to come? It might become quite technical and boring. And maybe I don't want you to know the prices."
"Do you even want me to come?" She smirks.
"I do." I chuckle. "I'm just preparing you."

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