Track Nineteen: Cheap Beer

“I read about his little speech by the way. You must be the sweetest and most loving wife in the entire universe if the honeymoon phase hasn’t faded for him yet.”
“You read about his speech?” Leaning against the kitchen island, C.C. switched the phone to her other ear. Neatly slicing the block of gouda, she popped the small square into her mouth as she listened to her friend talk about how there had been an article on the stoic and reserved Lelouch vi Britannia’s outburst of affection.

“And then I went to go see the video afterwards. I’m not quite sure, but was he crying? It looked like he was on the verge of tears.”
“Just a little bit,” she admitted. “Not that he was the only one.”

Milly laughed as C.C. flushed. She hadn’t meant it in that way; she had been trying to say that there had been others in the audience other than herself and him who had been crying after such a tender and heartfelt address, but apparently even over the phone and several thousand miles apart, Milly Ashford could still pick out her innermost secrets. Taking a neat sip of her wine, she sliced herself another piece of cheese.

“Anyway. Where is he, your darling husband? He can’t be too far; he’d never wander so far from you.”
“He’s in the shower.”
“Oh? I’m surprised you picked up then. I’d have assumed you’d be in there with him.”

C.C. sighed. Milly was right; why had she picked up in spite of knowing how badly she would be teased?

“Why’d you call, Milly?”
“Can’t a girl call her friend just because?”
“Not with you, no.”

There was some silence on the other end, and she took out another glass of wine as she heard the sound of running water stop. Uncorking the bottle, she poured a second glass of wine, when she was asked if she had made any plans for spring break.

“Not as of yet.”
“Do you want to come over then? We can take the boat out to Whitehaven with a couple bottles of champagne. You can pull out that monokini again. Remind Lelouch how much of a tease you are.”

C.C. couldn’t help but snort. “Firstly, he already knows how much of a tease I am. Secondly, I don’t know if I can even fit into that thing anymore-”

“Oh, I’m sure you can fit in it just fine.”
“-and thirdly, I think Lelouch wants to go Devon. His mother isn’t doing very well apparently, and he’s worried.”
“Is he alright?”

C.C. pursed her lips together. Her mother-in-law treated both her son and daughter-in-law with some distance and coldness. As he had told her once, such behavior was simply expected as his mother, for as long as he could remember, had always been like that. Even as a child, he had received little warmth and support from his mother, who had strongly preferred the company of his biological father over that of her son, which meant, he carefully explained, her frostiness was nothing personal.

She hadn’t felt particularly offended by the aloofness of her mother-in-law. To be quite honest, she was somewhat glad she was so hands-off; whenever he spoke of his mother, her husband always became a nervous wreck as if he had never really been able to grow out of that desperate desire to earn his mother’s love and attention (it had been for her after all that he had tabled all of his own personal desires; perhaps if he were to become a successful and prominent member of society – if he became someone who was highly respected – she too would give him more than a mere glance) and so it was in her opinion that the farther away he was from his family, the happier he would be. Even if he himself would never admit it, she could tell just by seeing the change in him that his family brought out in him.

“I think…” she said slowly, “Marianne Lamperouge was extremely blessed to have a son so dedicated as Lelouch is. That’s not all I think, obviously, but that’s all I’m going to say on the matter for the time being.”
“Wait until she’s dead, eh?”

C.C. smiled. As terrible as the joke was, it made her laugh anyway. Maybe it was from all the years of her husband’s sense of humor, but she couldn’t help but giggle even though she knew the joke would dismay the virtuous son.

“What’s so funny?”

She looked up from the plate. Her husband loomed over her as he curiously peered at her from under a fringe of damp hair. Pushing the hair away from his eyes, she softly said, “We need to get your hair cut soon.”

“Do you want to cut it for me again?” He grinned cheekily as he leaned on his elbows. “Try your hand at it a second time?”

She flushed indignantly. How was that her fault? He’d been the one who had egged her on even after her warning that she had never cut hair before. But before she could argue with him in defense of her honor, he slipped an arm around her waist and kissed her. The phone nearly slipping from her hand, she stepped closer as she wet the tips of her fingers in his hair.

“What’s that?” said the voice over the phone.
“Nothing,” she replied quickly. She tried to nudge him away as his lips skimmed her neck. “Stop,” she hissed. “You’re going to leave a mark.”
“Not until you get off the phone. You promised we’d spend some time together tonight. It’s my turn.”

Stifling a groan, she resisted the urge to roll her eyes. With a burdened sigh, she raised the phone to her ear again.

“I have to go. Somebody is being a greedy asshole so that I can’t even finish a conversation with a friend I haven’t spoken to in a long time.”

He looked at her innocently over the rim of his wine glass. Eyes fluttering with exasperation, she listened to Milly’s teasing before promising to call again the following evening. When she heard her hang up, she dourly looked up at him.

“I haven’t been able to talk to her since February.”
“And I haven’t been able to sit down with you since Sunday.”
“I made up for that.”
“This may come as a surprise to you, my love, but sometimes, men don’t really care for blowjobs as pleasant as they can be. Sometimes all they really want is to have some time with their wife without having to worry about this deadline or that project.”

She tightly pursed her lips. “Well, I’m sorry for that. But in my defense, you were doing it too.”

He blinked for a moment or two before chuckling to himself. “I suppose I was, wasn’t I?”

“Well, I apologize for that. Is there anything I can do to make up for my mistake?”

She raised her glass to take a dignified sip of wine, when he lifted her up onto the counter.

“The only thing is… I can’t promise you I won’t leave a mark. You know how grabby greedy arseholes can get.”

She snorted. They were way past that point now. He seemed to realize this too because he smiled as he reached to undo the first button of her… Well, his shirt.

Ah, yes. Now here was some quality husband-wife time. Here was the husband-wife affection he’d been wanting.

Here was the sort of husband-wifing he’d been raring for since Sunday, oh, goody.

Goody, goody, goody.


One Comment Add yours

  1. Sean O'Brien says:

    It was a rather gushing speech, wasn’t it? I’d imagine that many were having the same idea about his wife that Milly had though of course she’d know better than others. It is amusing that there were apparently articles about it going around, which I could see as a bit embarrassing possibly to have so many people focused on your marriage, even if it’s in a good way. It is very sweet that he was on the verge of tears and C.C.’s embarrassment when Milly took her comments to mean she was and it seems that was the case. I do quite like that it got such a good reaction out of the audience and people watching.

    That’s an excellent point. She should be in that shower with him. It is nice she picked up though since it sort of sounds like they don’t talk all that often. Milly certainly always seems to have a good time in mind or know how to have one. C.C. teasing Lelouch in a nice bathing suit is certainly a fun prospect and I’m sure she’d fit as Milly believes. Hell, Lelouch might appreciate if it was a bit tight. Unfortunate about his mother even if their relationship isn’t the best, but his worry shows he’s still a somewhat dutiful son despite all that. Curious that his mother is able to be in the company of his father given he’s a bastard and she’s his mistress unless this is actually his, I don’t know what to call it, step-mother? Still a sad situation even if it isn’t personal from her perspective.

    It’s a bit heartbreaking that he did and still sort of does vie for his mother’s affection so much that I have to agree it’s probably for the best that he interacts with her as little as possible given how much it gets to him. Certainly a careful statement to make regarding the woman on C.C.’s end. And I don’t think it was a good idea to try and get someone with no experience cutting hair to just take a shot at it, but I suppose everyone has to start somewhere to learn. Guess I can’t blame him for being a bit greedy about her and wanting to capitalize on their time together as much as possible. Rest is fun banter before they start getting into more enjoyable matters together.

    Thank you 🙂


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