After laying the baby down in her crib, Scott started to tell stories about their childhood and how sometimes he thought that Sam and Ryan share the same genes of being overly dramatic.
"So, this one time in 5th grade, Sam came to me crying. So I asked her, what happened and she said some guy in her class had said some bad things to her. So I being a overprotective big brother, marched towards the guy the next day and took care of him," he started saying and said 'took care of him' with an expression that clearly made me imagine exactly what he had done.
"Guess what I found out the very next week?" Scott asked.
"I found out the guy was actually Sam's boyfriend who had cheated on her." He said laughing. "I still can't believe, she made up a fake story just so I could hurt him! And I believed her fake story. She's such a drama queen!" He said with the look of love for his sister in her eyes.
"So... what bout you? Any siblings?" Scott asked.
"Yep. Two!" I said to him, smiling.
"Two? Older or younger?" He asked curiously.
"Both older, Nate is 30 and Nina is 25." I said.
"Nate and Nina?" He asked.
"Oh yeah! Nathaniel and Nikolina Stark." I said to him.
"Wow! The poor guy must be stuck between two sisters."
"Sometimes, but we used to get along. I mean, we were The Three Musketeers. Nate used to always pretend that he was annoyed by us but we always knew he was always there whenever we needed him. He was like our bodyguard. And Nina and I were total opposites. I mean, she was daddy's girl while I was momma's! We never used to agree on a single thing." I sighed. "Happy times!"
Shit! I had to call them.
Scott nodded smilingly. Soon, the guys came down for breakfast.
"Uh guys... There's a baby in the apartment!" Jenna said, pointing weirdly at the crib.
"Whoa! Did you steal this baby while you were drunk? Awesome." Ryan said, jumping up and down.
"Sshh." Scott and I said together.
Damn! Can't they see the baby's sleeping?
Why do I have such idiot friends?
"Look closer, dummy! She's my niece!" Scott whisper yelled.
Aria walked towards the crib and looked down at her, "Oh my freaking God! She looks just like-" She started saying looking at me.
I glared at her, which made her stop.
She smiled apologetically.
"Looks like?" Scott asked, looking between me and Aria.
"Um... Sam, of course! She looks like Sam." I said quickly.
Nice save! Good work, small brains!
"Oh..." Scott said, still staring at me concerned.
"I have to call someone um... I'll be in my bedroom." I said, avoiding Scott's stare.
"Who are you calling?" Aria asked.
"Nate." I said to her, smiling.
"Oh... I haven't talked to him in forever. I wanna talk too." Ryan said.
"Um... okay!" I said walking towards the phone.
I took the phone in my hand and sat on the couch.
"Who's Nate?" Jenna asked.
"My brother." I said to her smiling.
"Where's he now?" Drew asked.
"In New York, he has his own restaurant 'L'Amour'" I said proudly.
I quickly dialled his home number and put it on speaker for everyone to listen.
"Allô?" A female voice asked.
"Holy shit! You're alive! The kids didn't kill you yet? Unbelievable!" I said dramatically.
"Oh my God! Nova? Is that you?" She asked.
"The one and only! So... how's my favourite sister-in-law?" I asked sweetly.
"I'm your only sister in law, smarty pants! I'm fine. How are you?"
"I'm good. Where's bro?" I asked her.
"He's in the study. Wait, I'll hand him the phone." She said to me.
"So, that's my sister-in-law Amnesia Redington-Stark aka Amy ." I said to the guys.
"Nova? You're on speaker!" She murmured.
"Bonjour, mon frère!" I said in my french accent.
"Hey, baby Ella! How are you? Are you still living in Manchester? How's work? Is Aria still working with you? When are you coming back? Do you want me to come there?" Nate started asking.
"Whoa, there! Calm down, bro. I'm fine. And for the love of God! Stop calling me baby Ella! I'm not a baby any more." I said to him.
Nate sighed and said, "Okay! Fine. I miss you, baby Ella." I could feel him smirking at me.
I pressed my nose and did my best five year old's voice, "I miss you too, mommy and daddy."
"Good to see that you're back to your old self. I swear to God! Sometimes I wish, I could beat the crap outta him for doing this to you-" He started saying as I felt Scott stiffen beside me.
"Um... Nate, you are on speaker." I interrupted him before he could say more.
"Ryan wants to talk to you." I said to him.
"Hey, bro... wassup?" Ryan greeted.
They both exchanged few greetings. Talked about sports, work - guy talk!
I zoned them out.
I quickly said goodbye to him and hung up the phone after Ryan finished his talk. Everyone sat back and talk about their day. While I just, felt my past coming back to me.
Suddenly I feel like there isn't much air left to breathe.
Great! Another panic attack. I haven't had one in months.
Suddenly I felt a warm hands around my shoulder and warm breath blew in to my ears, "Breathe. Brownie, breathe."
I slowly inhaled and exhaled concentrating on my breath.
I looked at Scott as he looked back at me in concern, "Are you okay?"
I nodded. We were so close to each other that I felt his breath on me. Our noses touching each other. His hands stilled on my shoulder. His eyes watched mine. And all I saw was blue and he, brown.
Damn, that sounds too cheesy!
Gah! Too much feelings!
Why does he have to be so perfect and I have to be such a mess?
I looked away immediately. For a second, I swear I saw hurt in his eyes, but he quickly recovered and his eyes became unreadable.
I looked at the guys, who had taken up their conversation to the dining table, eating breakfast. I hated hurting him, but I had to stay away from him.
Seriously, this friends thingy sucked!
It's like someone had placed a ice cream in front of me (Yes, I said ice cream! No other word could compare my feelings to Scott. Yeah! I love ice cream that much. God! I'm weird.) And I couldn't eat that ice cream.
Scott and I got up together and headed towards the table. We sat down quietly.
Ryan hand me a plate and asked sweetly, "What do you want to eat, baby Ella?"
"I swear to God! If you call me that once more I'm gonna slit your throat and-" I started.
"Whoa. Whoa... buddy! I was just joking!" Ryan said.
I repeated in the same sweet voice he used before, "Yeah, buddy... me too!"
Aria interrupted the conversation by saying, "I can't believe Nate married Amy! I'm mean, it's so romantic!" She sighed.
"Why is it romantic?" Jenna asked me.
"Nate and Amy were college sweethearts! They've been together now for nearly ten years!" I said to them smiling.
"Wow! Ten years, huh! Do they have kids?" Jenna asked.
"Yup, two girls. Jenny and Emmy." I said.
Jenna and Aria let out a dreamy sigh!
Yeah, even I'm jealous of my brother, for being in such a lovable relationship and have such cute kids.
"So... who's most experienced in taking care of the baby?" Jenna asked pointing towards the baby.
"Not me." Drew and Scott said together. While Ryan and Aria said, "Nova!", without thinking.
"Why do you have the most experience in taking care of the baby?" Scott asked looking at me.
I looked at Aria and Ryan and mentally picture banging their heads together like coconuts!
Damn! That would be fun.
I looked at Scott to see him looking, questioningly at me.
"I... um I used to babysit during college!" I said to him. Which was true!
Scott still looked at me suspiciously but nodded.
Our conversation got interrupted when the baby started crying. No one made a move to get up.
I sighed, standing up and walking towards the crib.
I held the baby in my hands and took a bottle of milk from the bag left by Sam and sat on the couch with baby on my lap, feeding her.
Soon, the breakfast was over and the guys started walking towards their room. Scott was the last to leave. As soon as he walked towards his room, I called out, "Ace?"
He turned around. I held the baby on my left side. And looked up and said, "Can I talk to you?"
He nodded and sat down beside me. He ran his hand over the baby's cheeks, his eyes softened.
Sometimes, I wonder what would my life would have been if I would've been with Scott instead of Brandon.
"Um... I wanted to thank you for helping me out before I er... I haven't had a panic attack for a few months now. I thought... I thought..." I exhaled, "Why can't our past leave us alone? Why does it have to haunt every memory that I have?" I felt my eyes water and I sniffed.
He placed a hand on my thigh.
He took a deep breath, "I wish I knew the answer to that, Brownie. But sometimes I feel thankful for my past. I mean, I wouldn't be the person I am today, if it weren't for my past!"
I smile at him. "I... um... I dunno... but I feel like I have to apologize for earlier." I said to him looking down.
"I know it's selfish for me to ask bout your past when I can't tell you bout mine but if you need someone to talk to... I'll be there." He said smiling. I smiled back.
The whole day, the guys acted like there's no baby in the house, so I had to take care of the baby. As the night arrived, I felt so tired. I couldn't even feel my arms. With the baby in my arms, I didn't knew when my eyes closed and I dozed off.
I felt myself moving. I opened my eyes to see, I was in air. Scott was carrying me.
"Ace?" I whispered.
"Shh... go to sleep, Brownie. You're tired." Scott whispered back.
"Baby?" I whispered.
"Sam came and took her back."
"Kayy... Night, Ace!" I whispered and snuggled into him.
I heard him sigh.
I felt myself being lowered to a bed. I heard him whisper, "Night, Brownie."
I felt his hand tuck a strand of my hair behind my ears and touched my jaw and cheek, with his fingers. I pressed my face into his hand. His fingers roamed over to my lips.
I felt him come closer and his lips pressed into mine for a couple of seconds.
Talk about spark! I felt a nuclear bomb explode in my head.
Too tired to open my eyes, I wondered.
Was this a dream?