She just loved him so much, there were times when the simple act of looking at him made her heart explode.
Gently, she smoothed his messy hair, patting it flat as he slept beside her. His face was half-buried in his pillow – a whiteness so pure, it accented the ever-so-faint stubble shadowing his chin. Leaning forward, she kissed his cheek as she burrowed into his warmth. There were nights when they’d fall asleep together, skin against bare skin, with completely pure and innocent intentions, and last night had been one of them. It had been a nice way to end their hours-long discussion. There was nothing quite so soothing for the soul as the warm touch of the person you loved, and as they had drifted off to sleep last night, they had enveloped each other in blissful intimacy if only to comfort the other.
Half an hour passed, during which she drifted in and out of sleep, when she vaguely felt something wet nose her bare stomach. Cringing, she curled up closer to her husband, when she felt two paws perch onto her side before the puppy clambered up onto her chest.
Liesl only wagged her tail. Cracking an eye open, her mother stared at her.
“You naughty little girl… Alright, alright, I’m getting up. Just give me a second to- Oh!”
Scooping up the puppy, she settled her into her lap. Shaking a finger with disapproval, she whispered, “Let’s let Papa sleep in a little longer, Liesl. He hasn’t been able to sleep well these past few weeks, and I want him to rest.”
But she was already bored and had leapt onto the rug. Trotting out of the bedroom, she slipped through the crack in the door. C.C. reached for her robe before shuffling out after her in her fluffy slippers. Her husband usually made breakfast, but every now and then, on the rare occasion she had managed to wake up earlier than him, she allowed herself to become a more traditional wife.
Having started the coffee, she peered into the fridge to see what they had to eat. Not much, apparently, though in their defense, they had been planning on going grocery shopping this afternoon. Oh, well. She’d just have to make do with what they had.
Wouldn’t some crêpe be nice? They had blueberries – she took a moment to crack a smile; one of the words she liked to hear her husband say was “blueberry” on account of him pronouncing it like “blueburry” which wouldn’t seem like such a big deal, but… Everyone was a little different with what they liked and such – as well as some strawberries. And there might even be some nutella or powdered sugar left. One never knew when living with someone who possessed such a notoriously sweet tooth.
She was pleased to find everything that she wanted in the cupboards until she had to take the tray of food into the bedroom. With the crêpes and the yogurt and the pot of coffee and the eggs, her arms ached even though the walk to the bedroom was a relatively short one. All the same, she took the tray with what one could call glee. Carefully she set it down by the bed before turning to stare at her husband.
He was still fast asleep. His breaths slow and steady, his lashes were long and his cheeks pale. Crawling back into bed beside him, she brushed his cheek.
He frowned in his sleep before the angry wrinkles smoothed out again. Helping Liesl up onto the bed, she gently shook him.
“Rabbit, it’s time for breakfast. Wake up.”
“It’s time for breakfast, silly.” She giggled as he cringed and cracked an eye open. “Aren’t you hungry?”
“Breakfast…? What time is it?”
“It’s nearly 11.”
“You must be joking…” He groaned. “It’s so late. So late…”
“That’s why,” she said as she revealed the tray, “I made breakfast.”
Seeing her surprise, he couldn’t help but smile at her sleepily. Pulling her closer, he kissed her lightly.
“You’re an absolute angel.”
“Wait ’til you try the eggs.”
Sitting up, he smiled fondly at her, making her blush. Anxiously, she watched as he began eating. It had been some time since she had made anything, and though he wasn’t a picky eater, the whole point of making him breakfast had been to make him happy, and there was no way a shitty breakfast would make anyone happy.
She was relieved to see him nod.
“Aren’t you going to eat?”
Telling her to open, he fed her. The cool berries melted wonderfully with the nutella, and she couldn’t help but grin.
“I’m a pretty damn good cook, aren’t I?”
“Yes. Yes, you are. So good, in fact, that I’ve changed my mind and I don’t want to share.”
Leaning up, she kissed him, leaving a faint chocolate outline of her lips on his cheek. Giggling, she stole a bite.
“Too bad because I’m hungry.”
The sunlight crept in through the curtains as they laughed over their breakfast. Already he seemed better; his laugh was lighter and his smile brighter than it had been before, soothing any lingering worries from the evening before. That was right. They would make it through together. Whatever happened to them – whatever storms that would come in the future – it didn’t matter because they would be together and so long as they were together, there was nothing that could hurt them. They had promised each other that years ago, hadn’t they?
All the same, it was nice to see him like this. She didn’t think there had ever been a moment when he was as beautiful to her as he did now, even with his crazy hair and chocolate on his cheeks.
It made her fall in love with him all over again.
Track 39: Closer