“What if I go with you?”
The question takes me by surprise. Did he really want to go with all the way to Louisiana for Thanksgiving? I already know my relatives would badger the poor guy with tons upon tons of questions and he’d most likely consider removing his eardrums when he realizes how much my Aunt Terri talks about her cats.
But there’s also the fact that I kind of want to go by myself for two very simple reasons.
1.) Like I said before, Theo and I could use some time apart. I mean we should use time apart, right? Could things get better by spending more time with him? Of course not, right?
2.) I really don’t want Theo to come with me and find out all about my family. I know he told me all about his and it’s only fair for him to be up to speed on mine, but truth is I’m embarrassed. Not of my family of course, but of my past actions that he’ll definitely find out if he comes with me to my hometown. With what I did he’d probably never look at me the same...
“Mya? Hellooo? Ya in there?”
I instantly see Theo’s hand being waved in front of my face trying to get my attention.
I’d been standing there staring off into space forever and probably looking like a completely crazy person.
“Ya? What?” I asked snapping back to reality.
“So yes or no?” He asked stepping a little closer to me.
I thought for a second. Why not just come up with reason for him not to go and then he’ll eventually put everything together and realize for himself that he can’t possibly go. Now for what reasons??
“What about your family?” I asked looking up to him.
“Amaya. You know all about my family. The last place I want to be is with them. I’d much rather be with you.” He smiled down to me and curled his index finger under my chin.
I grinned back and laid my head on his chest as we hugged. His idea of him accompanying me was growing on me...and I couldn’t let that happen.
“What about football?” I question trying to get a spark.
“All football players have a couple of days off as long as we’re back the day after Thanksgiving, get a little workout in, and are prepared for the game on Saturday after.”
Fudge. I was running out of questions.
“Amaya. If you don’t want me to go then just tell me. I won’t be mad. I understand, but just tell me.” He stated.
He looked confident in what he said, but his eyes told another story. The absolute last thing he wanted to do was stay here in this apartment by himself for the holiday you’re supposed to spend with the people closest to you. The resistance against him going with me was breaking down within seconds. My mind was telling me to let him come with me and sadly my heart was agreeing.
“Fine you can come.” I sighed.
“Yes! Let me go pack real quick.” He bolted from my room to get his things together and that’s when I remembered we’d completely forgot to talk about something...well someone extremely important.
I ran to Theo’s room and saw him rushing around trying to pack as quickly as he could.
“Hey Theo?” I asked stepping into his room.
“Yeah?!” He asked as he was comparing two flannels before just tossing both into his suitcase.
“We forgot to discuss something about this trip.”
He immediately stopped stuffing his bag and turned to me. “What is it?”
“It’s nothing serious it’s just...what about Gracie?” I asked.
“Why don’t we just bring her with us?” He asked like it was no big problem as he went back to packing.
“What? No. We can’t.” I immediately thought of what all my relatives would be thinking of.
“Theo my relatives are some of the nosiest people alive. They’d all be like ”Oh. They got a dog together? They gotta be together. A pet together? That’s a commitment to each other. Next thing you know they’ll be getting married." Then would come the swarms upon swarms of questions about mine and your relationship and how we met. Which probably won’t settle well with my mom or grandmother l considering they both think you should only live with the man you’re married to.” I crossed my arms trying to make a point.
“How about we drive down together and if by the end of the trip you feel too much pressure about me being there I’ll understand. I’ll come back here, and if you send me back I’ll bring Gracie back with me so you don’t have to worry about her. We’ll go on multiple trips to the park and I’ll get her those treats she loves. It’ll all be okay so don’t worry, Amaya. If you decide to let me stay and we come to any problems with your family. I’ll talk our way out of it. I’m a great talker. Old people love me.” He smirked like that was the most attractive thing about him.
I could name a few others...
He’s right though. He’s a great talker. He has even convinced to let him come with me.
“You once said you trust me more than anyone, Theo. Is that still true?” I asked him out of the blue.
It must’ve taken him by surprise as well because he stopped what he was doing and came to sit beside me. I needed to know because if he was coming along with me to Louisiana it was obvious he’d hear of my past at least once, so I just want him to know I’m not the person I once was.
“I still trust you more than anyone I know. I trust you more than people I’ve known my whole life. Mya, you’re such a kind and responsible person, what’s not to trust?” He asked smiling over to me.
“Thank you.” I kissed him on the cheek despite the burning of my own and got up from the bed. “My trust in you grows every day. You’re an amazing guy, Theo and hopefully my family doesn’t scare you away from me.” I said half joking half truthfully.
He got up from the bed and walked over to the doorframe where I was now standing. He took my face in his hands and looked deeply into my eyes. A grin took over his lips as he talked. “Nothing could ever scare me away from you.”
He leaned down and kissed my forehead making my stomach flutter. How did Theo turn into such a romantic?
I folded my hands trying to contain my happiness and lifted my head up to him. “You sure know what to say.”
“I’m a genius like that.” He bragged.
“Way to ruin a moment.” I slapped him in the chest.
“Ow, Amaya. I didn’t know you liked it rough.” He quirked his eyebrows suggestively.
“Theo!” I said with wide eyes.
He laughed his ass off because of the expression on my face before I turned around and left his room as fast as my feet could take me.
“Don’t forget Gracie’s favorite toy!!” He shouted after me. “She’d be lost without it.”
“I know. I’ve lived with her just as long as you have, Theo. I’m not stupid.” I yelled back.
I walked over to the little pup laying in her bed and sat down in front of her. My hand instantly went to scratch her ears just the way she liked and she eventually rolled over wanting me to scratch her belly and play with her.
“We don’t have time right now, Gracie. But do you wanna go with Theo and I to Louisiana?” I asked in a baby voice.
She had no idea what I was saying but when I talked in this voice she always reacted in a positive manner.
“Louisiana. Dawson, you never told me you lived in Louisiana.”
“Huh. Yeah I guess I never did.” I shrugged.
“How come you don’t have the southern accent?” He asked and I spun around to look at him.
“Southern accent?” I questioned.
“Yeah. Like in Duck Dynasty and all that.”
“Well. My family moved to Louisiana when I was four, so I already knew how to talk and already had that terrible New York accent. Sorry if it isn’t Duck Dynasty enough for ya.” I spun back around to Gracie and picked her up before carrying her off to my room.
Theo followed right after me.
“You lived in New York?” He asked. “Also sorry about the whole accent thing.”
“It’s okay. I was just joking,” I chuckled. “And yes. New York. It’s a long story. Where are you from though, wonder boy? Somewhere where football is a big thing. Somewhere like...Texas? Cali? North Carolina? Oh I know, Mississippi?!”
“No. Actually I’m from New York too.” He smiled before he came over and picked Gracie up from my arms.
“Huh. Never would’ve guessed that one.” I stated truthfully.
“Really? Dad in big business empire? New York didn’t pop into your head at least once?” He laughed.
“Nope. It didn’t.”
“Well you’re lucky you got away while you did. The place is pollution-filled, it gets cold and snows a lot in the winter, and the people can get so rude.” He scoffed.
“Doesn’t matter where you are, Theo, people can always be rude.” I laughed.
“Yeah I guess you’re right.” He chuckled.
This whole conversation with Theo really made me grasp the fact that I knew Theo. I understood him, knew his likes and dislikes, knew his family and everything. He knew my personality, what I hated and what I loved, but he knew nothing of my family or my past. Mostly because I’ve done so much to keep it hidden from him.
Maybe it was time to let someone in. Let someone know the truth. And maybe this road trip will give me the perfect opportunity to tell him everything.