December 10th 2018
“Where are you taking me?” She asked, her eyebrows knitting together in confusion as she took cautious steps forward.
“It’s a surprise.” He hummed lowly and pressed a kiss just under her ear.
Joe’s hands remained rooted on her waist as he guided her towards the secret destination, careful to ensure that she didn’t stumble and land on her face. He chuckled out loud as he thought about the amount of grovelling that he would have to do to make up for that one. Audrey was still grumbling and scowling about knocking her elbow on the car door earlier.
He was sure that this surprise would make up for it.
“I don’t like surprises.” Audrey pouted but struggled to keep the smile off her face as her lips twitched at the corners. The only reason she hated surprises was because she didn’t know what to expect.
“I know that.” He laughed softly. “But I’m hoping you’ll feel differently about this one.”
“Feel differently about what?”
“Good try.” He chuckled and squeezed her hip, indicating for her to stop.
“Are we here?”
Joe hummed his answer and pressed a kiss to the back of his head. His fingers carefully untied the strings and released her sight from behind the blindfold that he had all but forced on her.
When Audrey blinked and was met with a tall, dark wooden door, she blinked again, but this time in confusion. When a laugh sounded from behind her, she turned her head and sent him a questioning look over her shoulder, silently prompting him to explain.
“This door looks great, sturdy even, but what am I looking at?” She teased with a small smile.
“You know how I’ve been looking for my own place?” Joe hummed quietly, suddenly feeling quite nervous. “Well, I think I’ve found it.”
“This is the place?” She asked curiously as she turned back to face the door, looking at it with a new insight.
“It’s one of 2.”
“What do you mean?”
“I’ve chosen my 2 favourites from all the ones that I’ve seen, but I want you to help me make the final decision.”
Audrey blinked at him and frowned lightly. “It’s your apartment.” She stated simply.
“Yes.” He confirmed and laughed at the bewildered look on her face, having not yet understood where he was going with things.
“Then why should my opinion matter so much?”
“Is it so bad that I want my girlfriend to like my new apartment?” He chuckled and wound his arms around her waist, both of them swaying lightly.
“So, this is a ploy to make me keeping coming back here?” Audrey quirked a questioning brow and laughed softly when she felt him smirk into her neck
“You’ve got me there.”
Audrey laughed and turned back to face the door, her mind wondering as to what could be on the other side of it.
“I can literally hear all the impatient thoughts you’re thinking right now.” He chuckled as he dangled the key in front of her.
Before he could make her wait any longer, she quickly snatched it off him and pressed it into the lock before turning it. When the sound clicked, she pulled out the key and pushed the door open.
Audrey didn’t really know what to expect, but she was very pleasantly surprised.
While the apartment itself wasn’t particularly big, it was definitely bigger than hers. Other than the one bedroom and the ensuite that it had attached to it – with both a shower and bathtub – the apartment consisted of 2 other rooms, a kitchen and living room. While the living room was slightly small and homely, the kitchen was clearly the main attraction. It was very large in size but it was truly the newly furnished drawers and cabinets that caught her eye.
“I really like this place.” Audrey hummed quietly as she walked through the kitchen, brushing her fingers over the twinkling marble countertops.
“I’m glad, but don’t make a decision now because I want you to look at another one upstairs.” Joe grabbed her hand and led her out of the apartment. After locking the door, they took the stairs up two floors.
There were less apartments on this floor which alluded to the idea that this apartment would be much bigger than the one that they had just seen. She didn’t need to take too much of a look to make a decision.
“I definitely like the first one better.”
“Really?” He hummed, surprised.
Audrey turned around to face him. “You like this one better?” She asked, quirking a quizzical brow in question.
joe simply nodded in response.
“Then you should get this place.”
“No, I think I’m going to go for the first one.”
“What? Why?” She asked but when she saw him already reaching for his phone, she rushed over to take it out of his hands before he could rush into a decision as big as buying an apartment. “Why would you go for the other one when you like this one better?”
“Because you like the first one.” Joe stated simply, almost as if it was a fact.
“So? You’re the one that has to live in it, not me.”
“Well, I’d like for you to spend some nights here to.”
It suddenly dawned on her. A slow, wide grin took over her face as she understood exactly what point he was alluding to.
Audrey couldn’t bring herself to blame him for worrying about small things like this. She did have the tendency to read too much into things and instead, she was glad to have a caring boyfriend who cared about her thoughts and feelings, even on those things that had very little direct impact on her.
“Joe.” She exhaled a breathy sigh and pressed a kiss to his jaw since that was what she could reach without inching up on her tip-toes or pull him down. “You should get the apartment that you like. It doesn’t matter where you live, I’d still come round all the time.”
“You’re not scared?” He asked warily.
“I am a little.” She answered honestly, her fingers playing with one of the buttons on his shirt. Her eyes remained locked on his as she needed him to understand that she was just as committed to making their relationship last and thrive as much as he was. “But I’m also very excited.”
“This place is beautiful and it’s so big as well. And you love it so much.” She nodded and grinned, wanting to reassure him that everything was as it should be. “Now I’ll get to sleep over at your place some nights.”
“How about all the nights?”
When his arms wrapped around her and pulled her flush against his hardened body, she grinned into his chest.
“Oh, I see how it is.” She mumbled against his skin before pulling away slightly to look up at him. “Now that you’ve got a new place, you’re no longer going to come round to mine?”
Joe chuckled and dipped his head to steal a kiss. “You won’t ever be able to get rid of me. You’ll still find me waiting at your door every day after work.”
When she abruptly pulled out of his arms, Joe frowned and watched as she rummaged through her purse.
“That reminds me. I’ve got something for you.” Audrey hummed quietly as she continued her search. When her fingers closed around the cold metal of the peculiarly shaped head, she grinned.
“What is it?” He asked curiously, watching her carefully.
Instead of answering, Audrey presented it to him in her hands, keeping it between both of their bodies.
“To your apartment?”
She nodded again but this time, her grin tipped higher at the edges.
“Why are you showing me your key?” Joe asked even though he had an idea of what it was for however, he refused to get his hopes up until she confirmed it herself.
“It’s not my key.” Audrey rolled her eyes and laughed.
“What?” He asked, confused. But when she sent him a pointed look, understanding shone in his eyes and he grinned. “You got me a key to your place?”
Audrey grinned. “This way, you won’t have to keep waiting outside for me again, and I won’t have to leave the spare key under the potted plant either.” She had done the latter for him a few times but it made her anxious every time thinking that a stranger could find the key and break into her apartment. Thankfully, that hadn’t happened yet but she was determined to keep it that way.
When he continued to just stand there and stare at her shock, Audrey giggled and raised his hand before thrusting the key into it, forcing his fingers to close over it.
“Now that you have your own key, I expect you to use it.”
Joe smiled, genuinely touched at her gesture before he swooped down to steal a kiss. His mouth sealed over hers and when she parted her lips in welcome for him, he grinned and slanted his head to deepen the kiss, the taste of her addictive. Something he could never seem to get enough of.
“I’m going to use this key so much you’re going to get so sick of me and want it back. But you can’t take it back now.” He whispered the words between kisses, his teeth gently raking down her bottom lip.
When they both felt the need to come up for air, his mouth travelled down her chin, across her jaw and down the slender slope of her neck where her addictive, tantalising scent was the strongest.
“I doubt that.” She grinned and cupped his face before lifting his face to hers, wanting to capture his lips in another searing kiss.
After they had finished getting hot and heavy, he pulled her in for a hug and snuggled his face into the top of her head, feeling more content than he had had ever been before.
“You really like this place?” Joe hummed quietly, his voice hopeful.
“I love it.” She smiled, meaning every word of it.
While she did prefer the look of the downstairs apartment better because of the bigger kitchen, especially since she knew just how much he loved to cook, this place was bigger overall and had an extra bedroom. Also, she knew that he was already in love with the place. It ticked all of his boxes and he was extremely happy about it, and that was all that mattered to her.
As long as he was happy, she was happy.
Joe grinned excitedly as he searched for his realtor’s number in his phone. “There’s no chain on this place so if my offer is accepted, I should be able to move in by the beginning of next week at the latest.”
Giving him some privacy to speak to his realtor, Audrey pressed a kiss to his neck before untangling herself from his arms to take another look around the place, having not really given it much of a chance earlier.
While the kitchen was slightly smaller than the one in the first apartment, this one was still very impressive. She especially loved the kitchen island in the middle, perfect for eating if they didn’t feel like using the dining table. The open kitchen led into the open-plan living room which currently was unfurnished, but the space was so large that there was the potential to do so much with it.
From the living room, there were 3 doors. One which led to a small bathroom which consisted of a toilet, sink and stand-up shower. The second door led to a large master bedroom while the third an extra room which he intended to turn into either a home office or guest bedroom.
When she had walked into the master bedroom earlier, she had discovered that there was an ensuite bathroom except this one, had a bath instead of a shower. Since her apartment only had a shower, she could see herself taking a relaxing bath here every Sunday.
Joe would surely love that. Any excuse to have her around, really. She chuckled at the thought.
Audrey knew that for most couples, giving a key to their partner this early into the relationship was a definite no-go but she didn’t care. There wasn’t much that was conventional or normal about their relationship. Hell, this time last month, he had just been a faint memory from her past life in the city but now, he dominated her every thought and domineered her world just by being present; and she wouldn’t want it any other way.
This past year she had lived her life like a hermit, closing herself off form the rest of the world and burying herself in work every chance she got but as soon as Joe had stepped back into her life, everything had changed.
With him around, she felt stronger and no longer afraid of everything. While the gnawing feeling of the many things that could go wrong still ate away at her, she had learnt to ignore it instead of feeding into it and letting it consume her very being.
Once again, she was so glad that she had ventured out to his diner the other night because she feared if she hadn’t, they would still be fighting today and it would have been all her fault.
He had made her realise that if she allowed herself, she could be very, very happy with him. Those few days that they had been fighting were worse than all of the bad times from her first marriage added together.
Audrey never wished to experience that ever again.
Please do like and comment :) The next chapter will be up on Sunday!
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