Hidden 2 yrs ago Post by ICanBeAnyone
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She nodded a little. " Absolutely I will miss you. You have been most tolerant of my less than impressive coping abilities today. Fortunately for your relief, I will have had time to adjust. Ron would be a good choice, although I bet Elias and I could trade make up tips... maybe I can pick up a few pointers to make the girls really look bigger." She teased glancing down at her chest. It had not escaped her that her earlier transformation was hard for him to handle. "Kidding!" She said. "As you saw tonight, it might improve tips, but it also adds to the harassment."

She laughed as he grabbed her foot and tugged, before moving her other foot to rest on his thigh. She let her head fall back biting her lip on a moan of relief. "You cook, you clean, you run the perfect baths, you give incredible massages." She paused glancing at his hands looking for a ring. She didn't notice one, but in his line of work, and with as closed off as he was to keep the personal and professional separate he might just not wear one.

"Is there a Mrs. Serge at home? Because if there is, I think for the first time in my adult life I am jealous of another human being." She teased reaching for her tea holding it between both hands, letting her fingers wrap around the mug absorbing the warmth. "I don't mean to be intrusive, I guess I am curious. Not necessarily just about you, but whether or not it is possible to work a job like yours, like the one I want, and be married to someone other than the job."

She let her body relax under the gentle strokes of his massage. "I imagine it would be difficult, unless you had someone who understood the demands." She sipped her tea sighing softly.
Hidden 2 yrs ago Post by EasilyAmused
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The idea of her learning from Elias how to make her chest appear bigger caused his eyes to go wide and he stopped the massage on her foot. Did she not realize this was a bad idea!? She was already dealing with enough as is and now she wanted to invite more issues with it?! Her sudden announcement of ‘kidding’ caused him sot visually relax when she announced it was joke. Phew, he didn’t want to have to throw too many people out of her bar.

Then she asked a question that he got asked a lot. Normally he would dodge the question simply claiming that his professional life and his personal life were separate and leave it at that. However something about Lu, some reason he couldn’t explain, made him feel comfortable talking to her. A rare feeling for him, “There is no Mrs. Serge at home.” He said reassuringly as he switched to her other foot.

“It really does not relate back to the job. The minimal dating that I have done has never led to much conversation about my job. My personal and professional life are separate and until someone expresses interest in one or the other I will not be the first to bring it up in conversation. In addition to that, I have been walked out on by dates on more than one occasion. Some saying that I am too rude while others say I am too quiet so they feel like they are having a conversation with themselves.” A large shrug rose and fell his shoulders as his fingers worked gently on her feet. “The job does not make dating very easy but it is also not a topic to easily discuss since a lot of things I hear, see and experience are meant to remain secret.”

Once he was finished with her feet he gave them a gentle pat and positioned them so her feet were flat on the cushion between them. “Keep them flat so they can relax for a few minutes and not have any additional pressure.” At that he turned on to face forward on the couch and took up his tea, taking a drink and letting out his own sign of relaxation. This was, without a doubt, an easy job.
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Lu didn't know why, but for some reason it made her feel better that there was no Mrs. Serge. That knowlege shouldn't change anything, if anything it should make her a little sad. Serge was a good guy, he deserved someone waiting at home for him.

She sipped her tea listening to him talk about his dating experiences and frowned. "Ok, I get not talking alot about work on a date. I mean 'Hey just so you know, I get paid very well on the off chance I need to take a bullet for someone.' Isn't exactly first date material, but as far as you beeing too rude, or too quiet." She rolled her eyes setting her feet flat on the cushion.

"You may just need to date a different kind of woman." She told him. "You aren't quiet, you are observant, and a fixer. You don't have a lot to say until you understand a situation. Aside from that, did any of these women ever ask your opinion on anything or did they just chatter insesantly about nonsense?" She held up a hand and laughed. "Guilty. I know. I talk a lot, but in my defense, I don't really expect an answer." She grinned.

"Talking is how I process, how I think through what is happening, as it is happening. That can be a blessing and a curse really." She said quietly trying not to disturb his relaxation.

"As for the accusation that you are rude." She snorted in a most unladylike fashion. "I have heard dumber things, but off the top of my head I can't think of any. You are a very polite, well spoken, and again at the risk of a sexual harrasment lawsuit, handsome man. In my, I am aware, entirely unsolicited opinion, The problem is likely that you are dating women who look like they will be a good match for you on paper. Not that that is entirely a bad thing, but in person they are finding that they are no match for your poise, sophistication, and class." She told him.

"I know, you didn't ask for advice, and probably could care less, but as we have discovered today, when Lu gets on a roll, she just keeps going." She said with a laugh. "Instead of a woman who is capeable of looking good at events, find someone with a sense of adventure. You can with the use of enough make up make ANYONE look good. Skip the nice dinner as a first date, actually DO something. Play mini golf, take a picnic to the park and play on the swings like a couple of kids. Find someone who can let you have fun in the rare times you have together." She said swinging her feet off the couch.

"You, and some day I, are married to the job first, and there is nothing wrong with that, but it makes the down time that much more important." She said patting him gently on the knee as she stood up taking her empty mug to the kitchen. She opened the cabinet and started prepping the coffee for the morning.
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Her comments about him taking a bullet for someone increases his job pay made him chuckle, an honest chuckle that he typically didn’t show. For some reason he felt comfortable around her; which was a new and weird experience compared to what he was used to with some of the obnoxious women he’d had the displeasure of being around.

Listening to her talk seemed to put a lot of things in perspective. He really didn’t have much luck at dating. Sometimes… because of his father’s position and his mother’s stance in society, he would find himself going out on dates that he didn’t pick himself and that he wasn’t prepared for… then there was that one time that he picked out his own date and that… well that didn’t end well either. He couldn’t tell who had worse taste in women, his parents or himself.

A small smirk moved across his face as his sharp blue gaze turned her look at her when she called him handsome. Normally he got called other things like ‘hot’, ‘sexy’ and other things but ‘handsome’ was a rare one considering it was what he would consider to be a more sophisticated response. Which is why he would rather call a woman ‘cute’ or ‘beautiful’ instead of ‘sexy’ or ‘hot’; those are words that do not normally come out of his mouth.

“Thanks.” He called to her with a gentle smile. “I needed that more than I thought I did.” With that he finished his tea and rose to his feet. “I am going to go hop in the shower. You are going to sleep with your door open so I can get some sleep correct?” He said with a chuckle as he got up and stretched his arms to the ceiling with a long overdue sigh of relaxation. Then he disappeared into the bathroom and began to take his shower.

It wasn’t until he finished the shower before he realized he didn’t bring his bag in. His shower wasn’t more than ten minutes long but oh well. He didn’t have time for luxury; he was still on the job. Wrapping the towel tightly around his waist he stepped out of the bathroom and went into the living room. “I forgot my bag.” With that simple statement he returned back into the bathroom with his bag over his shoulder.

Minutes later he emerged once again wearing a pair of pajama bottoms and a black loose t-shirt. Nothing fancy but it was comfortable. He gently placed his bag down on the floor next to his makeshift beg and checked his watch. “What is the wake up time captain?”
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Lu heard him call out a thank you and grinned. She was glad to be of help. She genuinely liked being around Serge, he had a very calming presence, not just because she knew he carried a gun and could handle any rough situation, but because he was genuinely a calm person. "No problem. Sometimes it just takes someone outside the situation to see things clearly.

She walked out of the kitchen as he rose and stretched. "Yup! I can normally sleep through anything, so don't worry about moving around or anything. I promise if I am really asleep I will not wake up."

While he was in the bathroom she headed to the living room and started picking up her stuff to get it out of his way. She turned her head towards the bathroom door as it opened. She drew a sharp breath in through her nose as he walked out in nothing but a towel. She was right, he was a very good looking, very well sculpted man. She quickly turned her head away as he grabbed his bag. She wanted to keep watching, but didn't want to get caught staring. She relaxed once he was back in the bathroom exhaling slowly. "Damn Lu... it is NOT appropriate to drool over the body guard. This is not a lifetime movie." She muttered to herself.

She finished picking up as he returned, this time dressed. When he asked what time wake up was she glanced at her watch. It was now well after midnight. She chewed her lip thinking about it. If she was sticking to her regular schedule, she would run after she got out of work, which would be about 8, and then head off to school before taking a nap. But since she was going to take a mental health day tomorrow she could change that up.

"That is an excellent question. I normally would run at 8 or 9 after a double. Any other day I would probably get up at 5 and run at 6, but tomorrow... Let's be totally crazy and sleep until 7." She said with a grin. "We can hit the gym, or even go for a run on the beach. After that, I have absolutely nothing planned. I am totally taking a mental health day. Today was a little much for even my notoriously adaptable self." She grinned and shrugged. "I mean Yay! family, but I got a father, a body guard, and a dress all in the same day, and believe it or not, the dress part is probably the most difficult part." She teased.

Lu was good at the self depricating humor, it was her stock in trade. "Anyway... I should let you get some rest." she said scooping up her project bag and heading towards her room. "I might read for a while, let me know if the light is keeping you up." She said. "My ex used to complain that the light kept him from sleeping." She shook her head and made a face. "The man could sleep in broad daylight while watching NASCAR at full volume, but my tiny reading light would keep him up."

She opened her bedroom door and nestled her project bag down against the door to make sure it stayed open and didn't drift closed through the night.
Hidden 2 yrs ago Post by EasilyAmused
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Serge listened closed to her words and marked his watch for the time she said. A nod rose and fell his head as he turned his blue gaze to hers. Her words made him chuckle as he gave a firm nod. “Alright Captain. And don’t worry, your new found father is just as nervous about the whole thing as you are and I am sure he would be surprised if you the two of you suddenly became close. Things like this time take and he knows that.”

A small snort left him as he put his laptop into his bag, “Your ex sounds like an asshole. No wonder he is your ex now.” He said with a nod before sitting down on the air mattress. “Do not worry, I am a good sleeper. Sleeping in lights is nothing new for me but I know what I am listening for when it comes to needing to wake up.” He gave her a gentle wave as he settled down on the mattress and pulled the blanket onto him. It’s hard to believe a client would be so nice. Settling in he closed his eyes and within moments he was asleep.

Nothing happened that caused him to wake up from his sleep aside from the buzzing of his watch. His blue eyes popped open and he sat up on the mattress. A gentle sigh left him as he removed the covered and stood up. He had set his alarm for a half an hour before seven. Stretching into the air he wondered into the kitchen and began a normal process for him, having a breakfast in the morning.

Within the half hour, the living room and kitchen smelled like a fresh breakfast casserole made out of cheese and ham. A sigh of happiness left him as he opened the oven and took a deep breathe of his creation. “Mmmm.” Pulling out the casserole, he placed it on the dish on the counter and shut the oven before turning it off. Pulling the apron off of him, he placed it gently on the counter before he began to cut the casserole into smaller pieces and placing them on plates.

Taking the plates into the living room he heard her moving and let out a gentle call. “Good morning. Breakfast is ready.”
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Lu slowly awakened her head spinning with the strange dreams of the night before. Her day had blended into a strange combination of things in her exhausted brain. She slipped out of bed moving slowly. She felt as if she had been beaten with a sock full of rocks. She stretched and yawned hearing Serge’s voice from the living room. She stepped into the door way leaning lightly against the doorframe as she watched him with breakfast.

“Morning.” She said groggily before pushing away from the doorway propelling herself into the living room. She accepted a plate from him before sitting down curling her legs under her. “Do you cook like this all the time?” She asked before taking a bite. She exhaled on a sigh her eyes rolling a little.

“This is amazing” she told him. “I am going to get spoiled if you keep this up.”
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Her question made Serge chuckle as he sat down on the couch next to her and began to cut into the food. “All the time? Good god no, this is a sad comparison to what I can actually make.” He said with a nod as he chewed some of his food and swallowed. “Normally I prefer to work within my own kitchen but for not using my own kitchen and not shopping myself, this turned out alright.”

A smirk moved across his full lips as his blue gaze turned to her. “Spoiled? Compared to what you have been eating this must be luxury food.” Normally Serge wasn’t allowed to get this comfortable with clients but her humor and his seemed to match. Not to mention they got along pretty well, so Serge cold feel himself loosen up around her… just a bit. “I have seen your kitchen; a home cooked meal will do you wonders today.”

After finishing his plate he stood up and went into the kitchen and began washing it. “We need to go over your schedule for today and the rest of this week so I can inform my team and your father what our basic schedule is. If something were to happen to me I want to make sure you have someone to take over for me.”
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Lucia laughed as he teased her about this meal being a luxury. She shook her head and decided to play a little. "Well it, certainly won't earn any Michilin stars, but a solid 3 out of 5 on trip advisor. Had to dock for ambiance... the gourmet food, doesn't match the hole in the wall decor." She teased. She was really enjoying spending time with him. It was getting hard for her to remember that in a week or so that this would be over, he would be on his way to his next job, and she, would be left to negotiate life as the adult child of a very rich and powerful man.

It didn't take her long to finish her breakfast, she was used to living on the run. He stood in the kitchen washing his dish as he mentioned needing to go over the schedule for the rest of the week. She stood up and headed to the kitchen sliding her dish into the sink, before leaning against the counter.

"Today, is what my mom would have called a mental health day. I am not going to class. I am not going to work. I am going to take a deep breath, and try to figure out exactly what the hell has happened to my life in the past..." She glanced at her watch. It was hard to believe that it had not yet been a full 24 hours since he had knocked at her door. "18 or so hours." She pulled a hair tie off her wrist and tied back her unruly mess into a quick pony tail. "The only significant thing on the agenda today is laundry." She smiled. "I mean I normally would let it go another week or so, but I have seen you eyeing the mess around here, so lets hit up the laundromat before you get desperate enough to set up a washboard in the bathtub." She teased.

She knew her place was a chaotic mess, it was so bad that he had made her relax in a bath just so he had some space to clean up a bit yesterday. "Tomorrow was a scheduled day off, and I have nothing planned really. I might try to do some studying, or I might not."

She pushed away from the counter and poured herself a cup of coffee. "The rest of the week is school and work." She ignored the hard part of what he said. 'If something happens to me' She couldn't even process that. What could possibly happen, no one knew who she was, or who he was.

She held the cup of coffee tightly between her hands. "Serge, I want you to be straight with me." She said seriously. "In your opinion, what are the chances we make it through to the election without my identity becoming known?" She sipped her coffee. "I am not worried about a leak from your team, but how many people are in and out of Erik's office?, before he turned to you, how many people did he talk to in his search for me?" She was just thinking out loud.

"And it begs the question, politically, is hiding me in Eriks best interest? If it comes out later, will his supporters feel betrayed? Like he lied to them in some way?"

She wasn't excited about the possibility of having to come forward, as a matter of fact the idea of being discovered scared the hell out of her, but right now in this moment, her life wasn't entirely her own.
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Serge took her plate and began to clean it as he listened to her talk. It wasn’t until she said something about wanting to know the possibly chance of her identity becoming common knowledge or not. To this the young man dried his hands and crossed his arms over his chest thinking intensely on her question. It was a fair question and deserved as logical of an answer as he could provide. His eyebrows pushed together in thought as he pondered the idea.

“There is a fifty percent chance of you being found out before the election because of people’s obsession with digging into their opponent’s past. A sixty five percent chance with one of my team with you at all times because those who do their research know who we work mainly for. But they would be required to put both pieces of information together. Without both pieces of information the likelihood of someone putting it together is about twenty five percent, considering someone may say “You know you look like Erik Wilmer”, but that could happen whether you were his child or not.”

Hanging the towel back up, he let out a small sigh as he thought about the other portion of her question. “That…” He began before stopping himself. “That I do not know.” His answer was honest and true as he ran a hand through his hair and started towards the living room to his laptop. Sitting down on the couch he opened it up. “I would say that varies on how the information is obtained. If he announces it as ‘finding you after searching for so long’, you know, the truth, people will be thrilled and take well to the news. But if it is found out another way, I cannot imagine it going in a positive direction.”

He began to quickly type away before he chuckled, “But I am just the man hired to keep you safe, I purposely stay out of politics.” A nod rose and fell his head before he mindlessly reached over to grab his coffee cup which… he didn’t bring with him. Looking over his shoulder he asked politely with a charming smile, “Will you please bring me my coffee?”
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Lu listened to Serge, he had good points. Her true identity may not be revealed, but as he spoke something else started niggling in the back of her head. She let him walk out of the kitchen while she kept thinking.

She smiled as she heard him ask for his coffee. She refilled it freshening it up before walking to join him in the living room. She leaned over the back of the couch, close to him and handed him the cup of coffee, holding hers in the other hand.

"There is one possibility I don't think either of us thought about." She said quietly. "It occurred to me while you were talking. Not everyone knows he was searching for his daughter, but everyone knows who you are and what you look like. Erik is a young, healthy, attractive man." She said sipping her coffee.

"Who do rich powerful men often assign staff to?" She asked, wondering if it would occur to him that someone might mistake her for his mistress.

She was leaning close, but not encroaching on his personal space, but close enough that she could. She sipped her coffee with a sigh. "That is a problem for minds other than ours I suppose." She said.

She patted his shoulder as she stood up letting him type his report. She grabbed her project bag before settling down on the other side of the couch, her feet tucked under her. The two of them just spending time together quietly.

"Would it bother you if I put something on Netflix?" She asked while grabbing the remotes. She often liked to have something playing quietly in the background.
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Taking coffee cup he gave her a grateful smile before taking a drink. However her statement nearly made him choke on the coffee as he spit it back in his cup. Oh yes Serge understood what she was saying and his surprised expression said it all as his gaze turned up to her. Boy that was would be awkward if the press thought that his team was guarding someone who was his mistress. This time, calming himself, he took a serious drink off the coffee before setting down his cup and turning back to his laptop.

“Well if you are that concerned we will just start walking hand and hand.” He said, a shrug lifting his broad shirt covered shoulders as he shot her a cheeky grin. “It would not look weird if I was your boyfriend and already around. Plus…” He began bringing his cup to his lips. “Your neighbors are probably convinced we slept together last night; it would be a good cover.”

Taking a quick drink he placed his cup back down onto the end table and turned his attention to the TV. “Anything but the Series of Unfortunate Events, I promised… someone I would watch it with them.” He said with a nod before typing away on his computer. “That Stranger Things show is pretty good, and I hear they put Season 2, have you seen that show at all?
Hidden 12 mos ago 9 mos ago Post by ICanBeAnyone
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Lu wasn’t quite awake enough for this. She turned her head to look at Serge as he suggested that they start to pose as a couple. She looked him up and down, and even newly awakened, he looked amazing. Her worry was that no one would buy that the two of them were together. Yes, opposites attract, but only to a point. How in the world would they carry that off. “Do you REALLY think that people would buy that?” She asked with disbelief. She turned on Stranger Things on Netflix with the volume down low, so as not to disturb either of them.

She started trying to stitch on her project with hands that shook a little. “First of all, how did we meet? How long have we been dating? How…” She stopped herself knowing that her incessant talking drove him insane, especially when he didn’t have answers for her. “Complete honesty, pretending to be a couple with you certainly wouldn’t be a hardship, but I am unsure anyone who knows either of us would believe it.” She said softly.
She took a couple of stitches finishing her row before looking back at him. “Should we maybe discuss this with Eri…” She sighed and rephrased herself “My dad? As you pointed out if this comes out without him releasing it, it could be bad, and if we carry off the dating thing, will he ever really be able to come clean?”

She put down her stitching and turned to rest her back on the arm rest of the old beat up couch. “Serge, I know I said mom never really talked much about my dad. And while that is true, I did leave out the little she did say. When I got older, I was angry. I blamed him for not being around, for not manning up and doing what he was supposed to do. I think it was over something ridiculous, like not having the extra money for a school function, probably homecoming or prom. Something that seems pointless now.” Her eyes drifted away from Serge, focusing on a small framed photo of her and her mother together hanging on the wall.

“She loved him. She never stopped. I don’t know if he was her one true love, or if it was teenage infatuation that was never allowed to die, but she loved him until the day she died. She told me they were kids when she got pregnant, but that I couldn’t be mad at my dad. He didn’t leave us. She left him when she knew she was pregnant with me. She said he came from a good family, that he was going places, and that he would finally do some damn good in this world. She knew he would have married her, that’s just the kind of guy he was. She didn’t want a wife and kid getting in the way of him being the man she knew he could be, so she left. She never told him about me, at least not when I was a kid. I don’t know how he found out I existed, but she never meant for him to.” She told him honestly as she reached for her cup of coffee.

“I do know that if she were alive today, and she thought it would help him in anyway, she would call a press conference herself.” She finally looked back at Serge, the strong determined, tough woman of yesterday was completely gone. She wasn’t angry, she wasn’t sad, she was lost.

“I wish she was still here. I am not qualified to do this level of adulting on my own.” She said with a small laugh. It was in that moment, that it hit her, her mom was gone, and while she was alone and terrified, there was someone else who knew what she was going through, who could help her find the answers. She pulled her knees to her chest and wrapped her arms around them tightly as she rested her chin against them still looking over at Serge. “I guess this is why Nature gives us two parents huh?”

“Question of the day is, Do I talk to him about this, or just try to figure it out on my own and hope for the best? I know he really has a lot on his plate, and is now the best time to be throwing more at him? I mean I am a grown woman, I should be able to figure this all out right?” She sighed softly and lifted one hand to pinch the bridge of her nose. She looked at Serge again and managed a small smile. “I really am sorry. I would call a friend, but right now there is literally no one else I can talk to about this except Dad, and that’s a huge part of the problem. I don’t want to burden him with more than he is already dealing with, so unfortunately that leaves you.”

She sipped her coffee and slowly let her body relax. There was nothing she could do in this exact moment, she just needed to calm herself and focus on what her options were. She wasn’t sure where to go from here, but she would get to an answer, it just might not be right this second.

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Serge was ready to answer her questions as he was somewhat prepared for the retort. Plus, she seems like the type who had never had a boyfriend before so having some form of game plan wouldn’t hurt. However when he opened his mouth to speak he was met with quite a bombardment of information.

Despite his initial surprise, his face relaxed and he closed his laptop settling back against the couch and listened to her talk. Boy… this woman loved to talk. While she made some valid points she seemed to still be struggling to understand her own situation and, from what he gathered, she was someone who does better after she’s talked things out.

A small sigh and a gentle smile moved across his fine lips as he closed the laptop and turned completely to face her, his back resting against the arm of the couch and a strong leg propped itself up on the couch cushion between them. “You’re not a burden so stop thinking like that. No child is a burden to their parent and if you were, do you honestly think he’d send someone to find you. Much less during the time of his campaigning.” A large shoulder rose and fell in a gentle manner as he took a drink of his coffee before continuing. “There is no time like the present and the sooner you talk to him about it the better. As his daughter you could walk in and say you wanted to talk to him; or you can schedule a time with his secretary so that you can feel like you’re not interrupting him. But no child is ever a burden for wanting time with their parent.”

Opening his mouth to explain more, his phone began to buzz; the screen viewable from the table says Amie Prichard. “Oh if you’ll excuse me.” Taking his phone from the coffee table, he placed down his cup on the coaster and stood up putting his phone to his ear. “Hello? Oh it’s you… Um… this weekend. What do you mean now?” For the first time ever, a small amount of panic could be heard in his voice. “I can’t now. We schedule for this… No I’m not… I do want… Fine. Fine. Give me an hour. Thank you. Good bye.”

Hanging up the phone he quickly dialed another number and put it to his ear. “Elias, I need you at Ms. Bakers house. You have 10 minutes I’ll text you the details.” With that he hung up, an obvious amount of protest on the other end of the line could be heard before the click.

Without even turning to her, he spoke collecting his things. “I’m sorry Lucia, something has come up and I will be away until Monday.” It was currently Wednesday, “Elias will be with you until then. You have my number if you need me.” As he spoke he continued to type his message while packing up his stuff.

Within ten minutes the doorbell rang and Elias was let inside. His bright smile and cheerful deposition filled the room as he stepped inside. “Hello!”

“I emailed you the details you’ll need to know. You have my number if you need me. Thank you for being so prompt.”

“Just go man, I get it. Just go.” At that Serge gave him a nod, bid Lucia good bye and left. A sigh left Elias as he sat down on the couch and ran his hand through his hair. Obviously he wasn’t expecting to get the fall but he wasn’t going to let his boss down. Turning to Lucia he gave her a bright smile, though he looked exhausted like he hadn’t slept well. “Hello again. How are you?”
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Lucia looked at him as he finally spoke. She knew he had a point, but it was really difficult for her. It had been her against the world for such a long time, she had no idea what exactly it was she was supposed to do as far as reaching out. This whole family thing confused her. She opened her mouth to ask him more questions but his cell phone went off. She watched him stand, and heard his voice. She quickly found her nails to be very interesting indeed. She kind of froze, she wanted to leave to give him privacy, but she didn't want to move and draw attention to herself either.

His conversation finished and she heard him speak to her once again letting her know that Elias would be coming to take care of her, and that he would be gone for almost a week. She pinched the bridge of her nose, she didn't like it, but there was nothing she could really do. It was what it was, so she had to suck it up and deal with it no matter her personal feelings on the matter. She quietly reassured Serge that she would be ok, to handle what ever he needed to take care of.

She was still sitting on the couch when Elias showed up, she hadn't moved much at all. She watched the men, and told Serge she would see him Monday. She glanced over at Elias and smiled a little as he made an attempt to speak to her. "I'm here, and they say any day above ground is a good day, so... yeah." She said lamely as she stood up to change the sheets on the air mattress. She had needed to go do laundry today, and Elias needed a clean bed to sleep in.

She stood with her arms full of bedding and looked him over. "No offense man, but you look like you died a week ago and just ain't had the good grace to lie down anywhere. Do you need a nap?" She asked gesturing toward the air mattress with her elbow as she started putting the bedding in another trash bag to take with her to do laundry. She tossed the bag in the corner with the collection of others that needed to be done, and walked over to the closet to grab new bedding. "So you drew the short straw huh? Sorry about that. I can call Dad. If you ask me this is all over kill, and you guys really don't have to be here." She found the bedding she was looking for and turned to head back toward him.

She set the top sheet, blanket and pillow cases on the arm of the couch as she started putting on the flat sheet. "Elias? Is Serge ok?" She asked. She was really worried, she had never seen him off his game, and she had thrown a lot at the poor man in the last two days, but whatever it was today that came in really hit him.
Hidden 4 mos ago Post by EasilyAmused
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A small laugh left him at her statement, “Geez, talk about knocking down a man’s ego; and here I am dressed in my best clothes to see you.” The tone to his voice was completely playful and sarcastic as he gestured towards his clothes which were nothing fancy and it was nothing lazy either.

Her mention of the nap made him run his large hand across the back of his neck. A nap sounded amazing but he had a job to do and she wasn’t going to bed any time soon. The idea to make a joke of them napping together crossed his mind and his gaze shifted quickly up to Lucia before he thought better of it. Nah, better not. Sadly, he was so tired he was processing any ideas of how he could take a nap, her laundry would take a while but since she couldn’t do laundry in her house, she had to leave and she couldn’t leave by herself.

Then… he heard her question about Serge. A smile moved across his face, “That’s it!” He sprang to his feet and collected her bags of laundry. Despite his smaller frame he was able to pick up all the bags in his arms before turning to her. “Get your keys, we’re going to go do your laundry and get me a nap.” It wasn’t long before they were downstairs and in the parking garage. Elias had a different car compared to Serge’s SUV, he had a white 2018 BMW M2 which truck popped open as they got close. Dropping the bags inside he closed the lid and walked around the car pulling the passenger’s door open. “Hop on in.”

With that he shut the door once she was in and buckled and went around to the driver’s side. Inside he explained about the heated seats if she wanted it before he started to drive. “Don’t worry, I know the best place for you to do your laundry.” A smirk moved across his face as he started to drive… right out of the main town.

After around a 15 minute drive, they were in one of the suburbs of the city and pulling into a gated driveway. Rolling down the window, Elias stuck an arm out and typed in a seven digit code before the gate opened and allowed them inside. The house had a welcoming feel to it as they approached and it wasn’t long before Elias parked in the driveway and got out. “Come on.”

He led the way to the door and didn’t even knock; he opened the door only to call out “Lucy I’m home!” His voice echoed through the house before a muffled deep voice of ‘What!?’ echoed followed by a pitter patter of little feet.


Around the corner from what looked like an opening leading into a kitchen area flew a blonde haired girl in a pair of blue jeans and a soft fluffy red sweater. “Uncle Elias!” The blonde exclaimed as she jumped into the awaiting arms of the man who spun her around in a hug before she was placed on the ground. Her big blue eyes turned upwards, “Hi, I’m Eve.” She said politely, “Who are you?” The five year old could only be described as adorable as she stared up at Lucia smiling brightly.

“Elias what the hell?” From the same direction that Eve had come from emerged Serge in an apron.

“Hey boss, she needs to do laundry and I’m on 48 hours of no sleep so I need a nap. And she can’t be left unguarded so just let her do some laundry here, when she’s done I’ll take her back to her house. Okay?”

“Okay!” Eve responded before reaching out and taking Lucia’s hand with her two small hands. “Can I help with your laundry? Daddy taught me how to organize and do mine, I’m really good at it! Aren’t I daddy?” She said as she turned her attention to Serge.

A small smile moved across his face, a gentle closed lipped smile towards the young girl, “Yes honey, you’re very good at measuring the amount, making sure not to get the washing machine too full and separating your colors.” As the blonde beamed back at him and Elias took his opportunity to dash off to one of the guest rooms, the blonde haired man run a large hand through his hair, “Um… welcome to my home Lu, his is my daughter Evelyn, Eve for short. We were just about to have lunch, do you want to join us before you start your laundry?”

“Daddy makes the best food!” Eve proclaimed as she gave Lu a gentle pull. “Come eat with us.”
Hidden 4 mos ago Post by ICanBeAnyone
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Lucia was glad that Elias took her comment with the good humor in which it was intended. She hated to offend, but joking was how she managed to get through her days and keep her sanity. She watched the thoughts fly across his face, he was in really rough shape. He needed sleep, her laundry could really wait. She had no problem hanging out and watching Netflix while he slept. She was about to suggest just that when he told her he had a solution. He had everything gathered up before she could say a word. She really wanted to let him know this wasn't necessary, but he didn't seem that he would take no for an answer.

She did however take some of the bags from him, and when he objected she pointed out he needed at least one hand free in case he had to reach for his weapon. She walked with him to his car and raised an eyebrow, it was a nice car, but the white color kind of gave it the girl car feel. She smirked and bit her lip because she wanted to tease him, but he was obviously short of sleep, besides Serge had put up with enough of her snark for two people the last two days. She slid into the car but said nothing as they drove across town to a much nicer area than she lived. She turned her head to look out the passenger window as he typed in the code. It wasn't likely she would remember it anyway but looking away was simply the polite thing to do.

Lu stepped out of the car and followed Elias to the door. She was shocked when they were greeted by the child, and she had thought perhaps he had brought her to his home, but she called him uncle rather than daddy, so she was really unsure of what was happening. She was going to ask, but soon the child was in front of her and speaking directly to her. Lu smiled and grabbed her jeans right above the knee pulling them up to give her enough room to squat down putting her on the same level as the child. "Hello Eve, it is nice to meet you. I am Uncle Elias' friend Lu." She said with a smile. She didn't have kids, or much experience with them, but she did remember when she was a kid she hated feeling excluded when everyone around her talked, so she made sure to get on her level.

She was about to ask her a few more questions but she jerked her head up as she heard Serge's voice. Lu smiled and glanced over him, his personal apron was a lot more fitting for him than the frilly one she had at her place, not that he didn't look gorgeous in both. Her attention was once again drawn to the little girl as she grabbed her hands and tried to sell herself on her skills as a laundry helper.

"You know what Sugarplum... I would REALLY appreciate the help, maybe you can teach me to do it the way your Daddy taught you. I mostly just throw it in an hope for the best." She said as she reached out and tickled her tummy a little. She looked up at Serge as she stood from her squat and was about to object, but she had to stop to catch her balance since Eve tugged in the middle of her standing. She looked down and grinned. "I know your Daddy is an awesome cook! He's one of my friends too, My Daddy asked him to help me with some things, and when he was helping me he cooked."

She bent over and scooped up the girl settling her on her hip before scooting her to her back. "Hang on kiddo." She said as she placed her arms behind her under the girls little bum to hold her on her back as she fell into step with Serge. She wasn't going to say a word about it, his personal life was his own, and he was under no obligation to share it with her. "I'm sorry about this Serge, I just offered the kid a nap, and next thing I know he was sticking me in the car and headed here." She explained. "Not sure Why, I mean I do think Dad's being a little on the over protective side, but I'm pretty sure I could have handled watching Netflix for a few hours while my babysitter caught some sleep." She joked.
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Good god Elias knew how to play Serge’s cards right, and the blonde glared at his friend and colleague as the younger man dashed up to the stairs to the guest bedroom. A long sigh left him as he closed his eyes, seeming to find annoyance in the situation…

That was until he heard his daughter giggle.

His blue eyes opened to see that Lu had scooped up his daughter and began to carry her on her back. Giggles of joy leaving the small child as she wrapped her arms around Lu’s neck and the two walkers and one monkey began their adventure through his house and into the kitchen. “Every parent is protective of their children. I’d rather you be here than Elias snoozing on your couch while you went to the laundry mat.” He admitted as they rounded the corner and the large open kitchen was exposed.

The kitchen’s large window showed into a backyard with a jungle gym, a small basketball area and even a pool big enough to do laps in. Inside the kitchen was a long island in a U shaped, the stove top with 6 burners located on the U shape with a large refrigerator against the wall and a double sink, a dishwasher built into the counter and an oven built into the shelving with a microwave on the counter top. It was a nice kitchen for someone who obviously enjoyed cooking. On the island was a cutting board that had freshly washed lettuce, diced up cucumbers, chucks of bell peppers, diced up celery sticks and a freshly made looking Italian dressing.

“Have you ever had daddy’s homemade dressing Lu?” Eve asked from over her shoulder as her small finger pointed towards the bottle. It looked like a wine bottle however it was labeled ‘Italian dressing’. “Daddy makes wonderful dressings and one day he’s going to teach me how to make them. Aren’t you daddy?”

An honest chuckle left Serge as he nodded, “Yes love, as I promised I will when you turn ten.” A small squeal of joy left the little girl as they arrived at the island, two chairs up against the counter top allowing for people to chat while he cooked. As the girls took the seats, per his gesture, he retrieved another plate.

Making two plates and topping them with some dressing, he placed them both in front of the girls along with a bowl of freshly cut fruit and Eve happily dug in while Serge whipped himself up a plate of the salad and a bowl of fruit in no time flat. “Elias hasn’t been causing you any trouble outside of loading you up into his car did he? I hadn’t realized he had so little sleep from his last assignment or I would have called Ron.” A small sigh left him, the look on his face stating he was disappointed in himself for not being more aware of his team. “Poor kid…” He muttered softly before shaking his head as he re-corked the bottle.

“Anyway, you have laundry to do?” His attempt to make conversation even left his daughter to giggle. She wasn’t buying his attempt but seemed to understand where he was coming from as she scarfed down her meal with glee.
Hidden 4 mos ago Post by ICanBeAnyone
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Lucia fell into step with Serge. “I understand that, but you guys have real problems to take care of, and I feel like your time and talents could be used better elsewhere.” She told him. “My laundry could have waited, and I was going to tell him that too. It’s not as important and Eliases health.” She offered as they approached the kitchen.

She glanced around and it did confirm in her mind that Serge really did love to cook. She loved that he could watch her play outside while he cooked. It was a perfect house and a perfect set up for a family. He had told her earlier that there was no Mrs Serge, but hey people had babies together without being married, she was living proof. She felt a little guilty interrupting their time together. She didn’t see his partner, and as she thought that word, it occurred to her that perhaps there was no Mrs Serge because there was a Mr Serge. She blushed a little at the direction her thoughts were going.

She was grateful for the distraction Eve provided as she asked about homemade salad dressing. “I can’t say that I have kiddo.” She said as she backed up to one of the chairs so she could let Eve slide off in a way she knew would be safe and secure. She took a seat next to Eve, her normal diet was like that of an unsupervised six year old, so the last few meals she had shared with Serge had been quiet the change for her, and veggies? In her world that’s what food ate, but she was sitting next to a child so not a word about it would be spoken.

“Elias was a perfect gentleman. I am afraid I started the whole thing when I told him he looked like he died a week ago and just haven’t had the good grace to lie down anywhere.” She said with a small laugh. “I am sorry that we ended up here. I did make up the air mattress for him, but he wouldn’t hear it.” She said.

She watched the look on his face and she did what she had done before. She reached over and gently rested her hand on his forearm. “Hey, things slip through the cracks all the time, you are human. Everyone is ok, I am safe and protected, Elias is getting a nap.” She said as she started to eat.

She couldn’t help the smile that crossed her face as Serge tried to start a conversation and his daughter dissolved into giggles. Lu could sense his discomfort and she smiled a little. “Yes, so your folding skills may yet get tested.” She said referencing the earlier joke between them. “I really am sorry about this, I know that having your personal space invaded is not a comfortable feeling.” She said comfortingly. “Try to remember it’s temporary, I will be back home soon, and you and your family can get back to normal.”

She glanced over her shoulder at Eve and smiled. “Princess precious over here is gonna help me get the laundry washed just right.” She said and glanced back at Serge. “If you have things you need to do Eve and I can hang out outside While the laundry is cycling so you can work.” She offered. She didn’t know if Serge really trusted her to watch his kid, but it was the least she could do for him for all that he had done and was doing for her.

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