I make my own lunch and eat it in my room, whilst working on a paper. Micah leaves for work and shortly after, there’s a knock on my door.
I open it to find Sinn looking sheepish.
‘Hey. Don’t suppose you could give me a hand with this chest of drawers, please?’ He asks, his chestnut eyes glinting with hope.
How is he so bloody attractive?
I force a smile and follow him into his room, cursing internally as his delicious smell wafts up my nose.
He smells so masculine and sexy, it’s annoying.
‘I’m not small enough to fit in the gap. Could you slide in and try to ease it back?’ He points to the gap between the corner walls and the drawers.
‘I can try,’ I mutter and slide my leg in first.
‘Hmm, maybe you’re not small enough either,’ he teases and I scoff at him.
‘Cheeky sod,’ I reply and push myself the rest of the way into the gap.
I wrap my hands around the drawers and try to shift them.
‘Could you push on them and I’ll make sure they’re in the right place?’ I call and Sinn comes over to push the drawers.
I line them up with the wall as he pushes, cursing when my fingers get trapped between the wall and the unit.
‘Shit,’ I swear and quickly pull my hand out.
I step back out from the gap.
‘Fuck, I’m sorry, did I hurt you?’ He apologises and reaches for my hand.
‘It’s fine, I didn’t move it in time. It’s my fault,’ I respond and he takes my hand gently in his inked ones.
‘No, I’m sorry.’
He leans down and presses his full lips to the back of my hand.
‘All better,’ he teases and grins at me.
My heart flutters in response.
What the hell is this guy doing to me?
‘Right. One last thing.’
He changes the subject and points to his TV, which is on a coffee table.
‘I can’t seem to get it even, and this is the kind of thing that bothers me,’ he says and I nod in agreement, it would bother me too if my TV was off-centre.
‘Could you push it whilst I guide you? I think it’s too far left at the moment,’ he suggests.
I bend over and push the TV a little bit to the right.
‘How about that?’ I ask over my shoulder.
‘A little more, little bit more, stop!’ I do as he orders and take a step back.
He looks at the TV, his hand cupping his chin, finger tapping his cheek whilst he thinks.
‘Maybe a bit too right now, tiny bit back,’ he says and I resist rolling my eyes.
I bend back down and move the TV a couple centimetres to the left.
‘Damn, just perfect,’ he comments and I frown.
Is he satisfied now?
‘What a view,’ he says and I feel my cheeks flush.
I straighten up and spin around to face him. He smirks, knowing he’s been caught.
‘You bastard!’ I yell and I slap his arm.
I storm out of his room.
He was getting me to move his TV so that I’d bend over in my pyjama shorts and give him a good view of my ass.
What a dickhead.
A few moments later, he’s knocking on my door again.
‘Lilah, I’m sorry! I couldn’t resist,’ he apologises.
His voice muffled on the other side of the door, but I can hear the laughter in his voice.
‘Stop harassing me!’ I call, not really annoyed, but quite embarrassed.
‘I’m sorry, can I come in?’ He asks, I don’t reply and he opens the door.
I glare at him from my bed and his eyes soften.
‘I am sorry, I thought it was funny. Can I make it up to you?’ he offers and I raise an eyebrow in question.
‘I’ll make us dinner tonight, seeing as it’s just the two of us,’ he suggests and shrugs.
‘Fine, I don’t like lamb,’ I tell him and he grins.
‘No problem, dinner at seven.’ He shuts the door behind him.
I sit on my bed, staring at my door for a while.
Honestly, what I am supposed to do?
He is so attractive and I fancy him. I would jump on him in a heartbeat, it just sucks he’s my brother’s best friend.
I can’t touch him. I need to make sure he’s in the friend zone and that he remains there.
To be honest, he probably wouldn’t want me. I look boring next to the colourful girls he must meet in his ink parlour. I reassure myself that he wants nothing more than to be friends, maybe with the odd moment of checking out my bum, but aren’t a lot of guys perverts?
I continue with my paper, managing to finish it by six.
Just before seven, I come downstairs, wearing my dressing gown over my pyjamas to cover myself a bit more.
I enter the kitchen, breathing in the yummy smell of steak. Sinn is stood in front of the oven, grilling two steaks.
‘Ready in three minutes,’ he calls over his shoulder.
I grab the cutlery out of the drawer and ask him, ‘Do you want to eat in the dining room or in the living room?’
‘Probably dining room, it’ll be hard to cut the steak on our laps.’
I set the dining table, feeling nervous because this means we can’t watch TV and actually have to talk to one another, which is not good for my crush.
True to his word, about three minutes later, Sinn comes in with two plates full of steak, vegetables and some fries.
‘Bon appetite, madame.’ He places the plate in front of me.
‘Mercí, monsieur,’ I reply and he laughs at me.
‘I take it you’re wearing that to protect yourself from me?’ He points at my dressing gown with his fork.
‘From your prying eyes, actually.’ I smirk and pick up my knife and fork.
I hold back a moan as I try the first bite of steak.
‘Oh my God, this is amazing!’
‘Thank you, glad you like it.’ He shoots me a wink.
‘Where did you learn to cook like this?’
‘I’ve lived on my own on and off for about ten years, you learn to look after yourself.’ He shrugs and I realise I don’t even know how old he is.
‘How old are you by the way? If you don’t mind me asking,’ I question and he looks up at me.
‘28, and you?’
’22. I’m doing my post-grad at the moment, did you go to uni?’ I ask him and he pulls a face.
‘Briefly. It wasn’t really my thing. Well, the lifestyle was, but the lectures weren’t,’ he says and I consider asking him more about that, but he chooses to tell me anyway.
‘I did well at school, but when I went to uni, I lost myself a bit. I was always drinking or getting in fights, my Dad had just remarried and I didn’t like the woman, so I stopped going home. A friend of mine suggested boxing as a release, that’s how I got into it.’
‘What about your mum?’ I ask gently and his eyes harden.
‘She left when I was a kid. I tried contacting her when I turned sixteen, but she wasn’t interested in me. She had a whole new family,’ he tells me and I feel my eyes water.
‘I’m so sorry, that’s awful,’ I reply and he shrugs.
‘I see my dad occasionally, but I still don’t like his wife. I tend to avoid visiting family at the holidays,’ he confesses and I make a mental note to invite him to spend Christmas with us.
‘My parents can be a bit of a nightmare,’ I tell him, not to try and compete with his story or make him feel sorry for me, but to let him know that a lot of people have crappy parents.
‘Yeah.’ He snorts. ‘I heard from Micah that they’re really strict, kicked him out for tattoos and stuff?’
‘Strict doesn’t even cover it, honestly, if you ever meet them, and I hope you don’t, you’ll see what I mean.’ I finish my food and sit back, looking out of the window so I don’t meet his curious eyes. ‘I’m a completely different person when I’m with them, I have to be, or it causes arguments.’
I swallow and turn back to meet his gaze, feeling vulnerable under his intense, brown eyes.
‘I ensure that I speak more correctly, watching my colloquialisms and my grammar. I have to talk to their stuffy friends about the weather, and politics, and my degree and future, and of course I have to remove my piercings and dress a certain way.’
I play with my hands, feeling awkward that I’ve told him so much personal stuff.
I can see he’s going to ask why I put myself through this so I beat him to it.
‘They’re my parents, and as much as they drive me mad, I love them. They think they know what’s best and they are critical with the right intentions, it’s just a shame they’re such snobs.’ I shrug. ‘If I didn’t make an effort, it would cause -has caused- all out rows that have taken weeks to diffuse, it’s not worth the agg anymore.’
He sits quietly, listening to my every word. I feel so relaxed with him, it’s not everyday that I’ve met a guy so willing to listen and who seems genuinely interested in my life.
‘Anyway, aside from burdening you with my family, that dinner was delicious. Thank you so much.’ I smile, trying to lighten the suddenly-serious atmosphere.
‘No problem, and Lilah?’ He calls my name when I stand to clear the plates.
He reaches over and grabs my wrist as I reach for his plate.
‘Thank you for telling me all that,’ he says and I blush.
‘Thank you for sharing too,’ I mumble and quickly take the dishes into the kitchen before I can blush any more.
I wash the dishes whilst Sinn dries them and puts them away.
‘How long have you had your tattoo parlour then?’ I ask casually, wanting to know him better.
‘Just over two years now, it’s doing well, I’ve got a few loyal regulars that are always finding spaces for me to fill.’
‘It’s doing well enough that I could live on my own, but I want to save up because I’m intending on buying a house next year,’ he tells me and I can add yet another tick to the perfect man checklist.
He has ambitions and is working towards goals, what’s my brother doing? Getting his friends to buy milk for him whilst he plays on his xbox.
‘Wow, that’s great.’
‘Well, I’m 28 now, don’t wanna be sharing with roommates forever,’ he teases and playfully nudges my arm.
‘Yeah, well give it one week and you’ll never want to move out,’ I joke back.
Sinn turns to me after we’ve finished clearing away. ‘Wanna watch some TV?’
We sit down next to each other on the big sofa and Sinn flicks through the channels.
‘Go on Netflix,’ I suggest and he brings up the app.
‘Netflix and chill?’ He smirks at me, he looks smug and handsome.
‘Ha, you wish.’ I nudge him and roll my eyes.
He sticks out his tongue in response and the smile drops from my face, my eyes landing on the barbell piercing in his tongue.
Please fuck me!!