Chapter 20 : Albus: When Arguments Lead to Honesty
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You get told a week before you go. My class was told a couple of days after New Year; the first day back in training.
I have no idea where we are, I was too busy trying to get Louis' attention, but I lost sight of him and Chris just dragged me along and Malcolm Apparated us here before I could even ask. But I don't care. It's been really cool watching the rest of the first year trainees work on their skills when I'm not training myself.
I'm currently the Auror apprehending Chris with a one of the junior Aurors who have been assigned to help us. While Chris is on the run, somewhere in the park, me and Peter act as though were members of the public, like if we were in town; we talk and laugh - he's alright - but we're also surveying the park, keeping everything around us in sight at all times, and I eventually see Chris. He's got his back to us, not yet noticing that we're on his tail, and I surprise him with a stunner.
Unfortunately, he hears just in time and deflects it. Then the fun starts; the chase. This is why real life training is so much fun - on the outside, we're learning; on the inside, we both know we're just messing about, chasing each other and shooting out spells.
Who doesn't find that fun?
Chris is fast, he always has been, but I've been getting better; I run during the weekends now, so this doesn't wind me as much as it used to, in fact I only just feel the burn in my legs when I manage to grab him.
"You're under arrest, Reed," I boast.
"You should check that ego of yours, Potter."
He pulls himself from my grip, his wand ready to stun me, but between my family's never ending parade of pranks and training, plus practice on my defensive magic, I've learnt a thing or two. My wand is already out, my one-way shield in place and a body bind charm on my lips. His stunner bounces right off the shield, my charm goes through, and he's completely bound, stuck while I laugh.
"I like my ego the way it is, thanks," I grin, folding my arms smugly.
Chris rolls his eyes. "Yeah, yeah, just get me out of this."
"I like it," I tell him honestly. "This is payback for throwing me into the wall. Do you remember?"
Chris nods and sighs, "Yeah."
From behind me, Peter, who'd been watching our practice, whistled. "Nice shield. That stunner just bounced right off it."
"I've been practicing," I answer, only slightly modest about it.
But it's true; I started practicing defensive magic in fifth year, and I kept at it until I got things near damn perfect. What I've always been the most proud of is my shield; I can make it a full shield, protecting myself completely, but not being able to do anything in return. I can also make it one way, like it is now; I can still use my wand against criminals, but they can't get through my shield. It was an absolute bitch to get right, I couldn't get it to work for months, not until the end of Easter during seventh year. The mental strength it took to work, the concentration I needed to get it right, was draining. The school nurse was tired of treating me for my nose bleeds.
"Nothing can get in, but Albus can still get them," my dad's voice calls out proudly. It's my first practice session, he said he might stop by, but I knew he'd definitely come. "Well done, Al. You can let go now."
I drop my shield, while Peter removes the charm around Chris, and Dad, followed by Theo and Louis, step forward.
"I'm impressed," Theo said. "I'm glad I decided to come."
"Why's Louis here?" Chris asks curiously, rubbing his arms like he'd physically been bound.
"I was shadowing Louis in a case, we just got back when Harry said you were here," Theo tells us. "Since he did so well, I said yes when he asked to come. He'd tell you all this himself, but the guy he arrested punched him in the jaw and he's in quite a bit of pain."
"I think I need a healer," Louis whispers, barely moving his jaw.
"I'll take you there now," Dad promises, rolling his eyes. "We told you we should have just gone, but you wanted to come here first."
"Sorry," he continues to whisper.
Dad rubs Louis' shoulder reassuringly, barely touching him in case it causes him to move - Louis manages to whisper that warning. The afternoon sun shines down on us, but it doesn't fool us; it's still winter, still freezing, and Malcolm ends the session. We'll be back in the Ministry training rooms tomorrow, but I don't care that we've spent pretty much all day in the cold - I bested Christopher Reed today. It feels good.
"Feel free to Apparate straight home from here, guys, everyone else is," Dad says. "Come on, Louis."
"Wait, I want to talk to Louis," I call out. Dad pats Louis' back and moves away with Theo. "So, who's Kendra?" I ask.
If he could drop his jaw, he could. He automatically tries to, but then he moans in pain.
"I'm going to kill Xavier," he mutters venomously.
"If it helps, he was very guilty about telling," I tell him. "Who's Kendra?"
Louis rolls his eyes; it's the only part of his face that he can safely move without hurting himself. "Are you kidding? He's annoyed with me for being 'stuck' looking after me that night. If he looked guilty, it was probably about something else."
Now that I think about it, it's probably true. Maybe it's not guilt I saw; his mind was only on his son that night, it could have been something else, a different emotion.
I shrug. "Well, you shouldn't have made him promise to check in on you then. That was a stupid move on your part. Who's Kendra?"
"I didn't do that, Casey did. I was with him last night," Louis says, still not answering my question. "We saw Xavier outside as we got to Eclipse, Casey made him promise, then my good friend fucked off home. Not because of the club, I might add. It's just a club, there's nothing wrong with it. He fucked off because he had to go to work early the next morning."
"Sounds like Casey. Who's Kendra?"
"She is a woman who works at the club." I narrow my eyes and wait. "She is a vampire who works at the club." Almost there... "She is someone I like to sleep with."
"Interesting. Why don't we know about her?"
"Because our family are nosy bastards, you know that," he says. "I don't want questions about my love life. Can I go to the hospital now?"
"Lexi is very upset that you didn't tell us about your girlfriend," I sigh. "I'd expect that if I were you."
"I don't have a girlfriend. And why did you tell her?" he moans. "She'll only care about the vampire bit."
"Of course she does, she thinks it's all very weird because she thinks vampires and werewolves should be fighting. Be prepared for that, too."
"That's why you wanted to talk to me, isn't it?" he asks, shaking his head without actually moving it. "You don't care about my life, you just wanted to mock me about Lexi. Why couldn't that have waited until after I had my jaw fixed?"
"Because she's asking for you now," I answer honestly. "And I do care; you are my cousin, a cousin who doesn't stay with one girl for more than a night, no matter what they are. Do you see now why I'm curious?"
"Good bye, Albus."
I call after him, but he ignores me, waving a hand dismissively. I can't help but laugh, then frown because he's not the first person to walk away from me; it's like I live to annoy recently. I've stopped caring about Louis' extra curricular activities. He's a big boy, he can take care of himself. If he were in any real trouble, he'd have come to us - well, he'd have come to my dad or Theo. Knowing that he's alright, I just want to question him about having a girlfriend, because any girl who can keep Louis for longer than a weekend should be given girlfriend status.
Chris pats me on the shoulder and says good bye, Apparating home just before I reluctantly leave. I'm able to land in my living room because she's taken down the wards for me and I find her and Nicky - Dom, damn it, Lexi - on the couch. One look and I can see flower arrangements on one side and fancy suit catalogues on the other.
They're planning his wedding.
"Hello, children," I say, muffling a yawn. I was so wired out in the field, but now that I'm home, I feel like my whole body is shutting down. I'm so tired. I fall onto the chair.
"Al, what do you think of this outfit?" Dom asks me, holding up the open catalogue.
From the angle of my body and the fact that my eyes are half shut, I can barely see it. I shrug.
"Don't bother asking Albus," Lexi mutters. "I keep asking about the nursery, which I realize I now have to get back to, for days now and I've gotten nowhere."
"I'm not having this conversation with you again," I tell her quickly.
"It wasn't a conversation," she says to Dom.
I open my eyes and sit up, able to look at her properly. "You're right, I'm sorry. Let me rephrase: I'm not having this argument with you again."
"Wow," Dom says uncomfortably. "And that's my cue to leave. I have to go home and get ready for dinner with Kieron. I'll see you both soon. Maybe. Please take it easy with the party, Lexi. Just family and friends.
Lexi promises to do as he says, just as I ask what party.
"My engagement party. See, Al, some people like to celebrate the fact that their partners finally got the message."
"Awesome," I answer slowly, more in hope that it's the answer he wants to hear than in a patronizing way. Unfortunately, even I can hear that patronizing is exactly what it sounds like. His look says more than words need to; he's not afraid to slap me across the head. So I do the only thing I know I can do; I put the spotlight on someone else. "You do know Lexi, right? She won't rest until your party is elaborate and fancy and that usually includes more guests than you need just to show off."
I realize too late that it was the wrong thing to say, the worst thing to say. She looks at me like I've slapped her, like she's balancing on the edge and demanding to know why before I push her off. It's horrible. I regret every word instantly.
"Yeah, I'm not getting involved in this," Dom mutters. It's what he does, though; he gets involved, he tells people what to do. But his whispered "fix it" before he runs out of the door is the only 'help' he's able to give.
Lexi pulls herself up then, refusing to look me in the eye. "I need to finish the room. There's so much to do."
"Leave me alone, Potter. Just leave."
She only uses my last name when she's angry, so angry, that words just aren't enough. She usually yells it, just one insult and my last name and I leave her alone until she comes to me. She never whispers it, she never sounds so hurt. My last name is my slap in the face. I won't leave her alone this time, nor will I leave the house. She goes up the stairs as quickly as her body will allow her; I catch up easily, have to match her pace.
"Lexi, I'm sorry," I tell her sincerely, following her into the baby's room. "I didn't mean for it to come out like it did, I was just tired and annoyed because we keep arguing."
"Yes, you did," she snaps, angry tears forming around her eyes. I stop, frozen. I can't remember the last time I saw her cry. "You've said it before. I will do as Dom wants; if he wants something simple, just family and friends, he'll get it. I'm not that selfish, that self-absorbed. But, yeah, maybe things will be a little fancy, maybe there'll be a little more than there should be, but he won't care. Because he knows that I need something to do, that's why he gave me this. And so do you; I told you! You know me, but you say it anyway. No go away; I said to leave. I meant it."
"Lexi, please. You know that I'd never say anything that would hurt you."
"Well, you did."
She pushes me out of the room, slamming the door shut. I knock and I bang, I try and force it up with my body and I try magic, but every time I get the door open, she's ready; she's locked herself in. It's some of the first things she learnt, locking charms, ever since she accidentally did it as a child. She knows how to hide herself away. "Lexi, please open the door. Lexi, don't ignore me, open the door."
She ignore me anyway. It's no use shouting, she won't listen. And I can't keep trying the door if she's right there, waiting. She'll have to step away eventually, she'll have to come out. I just have to wait until then, let her calm down. Let myself calm down, too. Everything is changing so fast, becoming real. I can't handle it. I can't take it out on my best friend either. I need to walk, to get out. I'm suddenly not so tired anymore.
I end up down the street, to the small alley that we use to Apparate without been seen. I just close my eyes, no destination in mind, just the one thought: I need to talk to someone who understands us. It's a dangerous way of Apparating; even with the thought clear in your mind, you could likely end up anywhere and you usually end up splinched. The pull that comes with this mode of transport comes only a few seconds after a mostly clear image of where that thought will take me enters my mind and, thankfully, I end up right in front of the manor's large, old doors with what looks like a small cut on my arm. There's hardly any blood and it's easily healed - not bad as far as splinching goes. Some cases are much worse.
I stand there for a while, just staring at the doors and wondering if this is the right thing, then with a hesitant hand, I use the knocker to let the owner know that there is someone at the door. The manor is large and he could be anywhere, so the knocker echoes around the house. You can't not hear it.
It's not long before he opens the door; he was probably just in the living room. "Albus. What a surprise? I thought you'd be at home after your training today. But I don't kno about Louis if that's why you're here; he's still at the hospital with Harry."
"Hey, Theo. That's not why I'm here, can I come in?"
"Sure." He holds open the door to let me through, pointing to the living room. He switches off the television and watches me curiously. "Are you alright? Is Lexi alright?"
I swallow my fear, not knowing exactly how he'll take the start of this conversation, but I need to know, to talk. I need... reassurance. "Lexi has locked herself in the nursery, crying. Because I upset her."
"Why?" he asks, dangerously calm.
"We've been arguing a lot the last couple of days," I explain guiltily. "It just started out of nowhere; I came home and she had a go at me about the nursery. Now every time I try to say something, she bites my head off. So, today when Dom told her to take the party planning easy, I just snapped and I told him she wouldn't listen just to show off. Now she won't talk to me."
"And you are telling her father this because?"
"Because you know us better than anyone, even my parents. You've been there through everything. You know everything about her," I whisper. He knows more than I ever could. "I hope that you can help me to understand what's going on; if it's me, if I need to do something." Then I give him the biggest shock of all, the reason my fear over talking to him is so great. He did warn me after all. "Because I can't handle it anymore. I can't take that."
Theo checks the hall and makes damn sure the door is closed before speaking to me. "Be thankful that Kieron is upstairs in his room, because if he heard that you're thinking of leaving Lexi, he'd kill you."
"Kieron is going to dinner with Dom," I point out, my voice shaking a little. He can't be here.
"Not yet, he isn't. He's here."
"I don't want to leave her, I want to be with her," I say quietly, now afraid that her brother will hear me. "But I feel like she's practically driving me away and I don't know what to do. This entire situation terrifies me and school does not prepare you for it. That's why I came to you."
I turn away from him, focusing on the photographs along the wall, because if I keep my eyes on Theo any strength I have will crumble. I don't have the energy to pretend that these last few months have been in any way easy anymore. I'm still only eighteen.
Without thinking, I reach out to pick up one of the photos on the table, my fingers grazing over the frame. Everything was so simple back then; there was no baby and feelings and issues to deal with. We were just best friends.
"That picture was how I knew, you know?" Theo breaks the silence. I finally face him, notice his arms folded stiffly across his chest. But then he takes a good look at the picture and he can't seem to help but stare fondly. "You were fourteen years old there and I told you to get to bed and sleep properly, but neither of you listened. You said you were going to stay up all night, watch the movies and eat the food. But when I got up in the morning, you were both fast asleep, with your arms wrapped around each other. I took the picture because I wanted you to see that I was right about you both falling asleep, but seeing you two together? My only thought was that I was stuck with you forever. No matter what happened, you and Lexi would come through."
He pats me on the shoulder, a little too hard, and moves to sit on the couch. He has his head in his hands for a moment before he looks at me. "I've had over four years to deal with the fact that I'd one day have to call you my family and mean it, this baby won't change that. Not if you're strong-willed enough to keep fighting. You just have to get through to her. Let her calm down and talk to her. These arguments haven't started for nothing; something has upset her."
"How do you know the difference between something you can get past and something that'll change everything?" I ask slowly, not quite sure where my thoughts are going exactly. "What if one day something happens that we can't fix? Do you keep trying or do you let it go?"
"I don't know," Theo answers honestly.
"Did you think you could get past the reason you divorced your wife?"
Theo stiffens, the floor becomes more interesting. "No. It wasn't something I could get past. I made a choice and I will never regret it, no matter how much I think about the past."
"You think about the past? But you hate her; you argue all the time, you can't stand to be in the same room as her," I point out, joining him on the couch. "Why would you think about that?"
"Because she was my wife, Albus, that doesn't just go away," he whispers. "She made bad choices that I find hard to forgive her for, but I don't hate her. Sometimes I wonder if I still love her, but I know that leaving her was the right choice, and not just for the reasons that finally pushed me to do it. It was on my mind for a long time. But if she knew about any lingering feelings I kay have, she'd try to use it to come back and I can't go through that again. So, she can't be in the same room as me, she can't know. If I have to kick and scream and act like a brat to make sure that it doesn't happen, then so be it. I want to move on with my life, be with someone new."
"Annie?" I guess.
He nods. "Maybe. I like her. I guess we'll have to see."
"I hope you can put up with two little kids again for her."
If looks could kill; I start to think I shouldn't have said that, he looks like he's weighing up his options of what would happen if he hurt me. But he settles for a small smile, which I'm glad for, and mutters that he thinks he'll manage, which I have no doubt.
"Can I ask you a question?" I say, hating that I might break the nicer atmosphere in here. But I came here to talk about me and Lexi, only to do that I need to ask something else. Because I think I'm starting to understand something. The moment he nods, I just let the question fall out; I'm getting it over and done with, like ripping off a plaster. "Why did you and Daphne get divorced?"
"Because of me," Kieron answers me before Theo has time to react to it, let alone respond. He's leaning against the door frame - when he came in, I have no freaking clue - and watching us, a curious mix of emotions plain to see on his face - he's sad, he's nervous, he's guilty. He's not mad, though. Thank God. "She wanted to go shopping, to meet up with friends, but she had me and there was no babysitter; Lexi was with Astoria and they were already out. So, she took me with her. She left me in the shop. By the time she noticed, I wasn't there anymore. Draco found me in the street; I was so angry with her that I just ran off. I tried to get back home, but I got lost. I refused to leave the Malfoy home and because Lexi was already there and would follow me everywhere, she wouldn't leave either. So, Dad made a choice."
"Between you two and Daphne," I finish the rest of the story in my head. I already knew the ending. "You chose them."
"I chose them."
Kieron lowers his arms, they drop like dead weight. "Lexi is upset because the due date is getting closer and she's afraid that she'll end up like Mum. She's always been afraid of being like Mum; that's why she leaves people before she gets too attached. She never saw you coming." He moves suddenly, both panicked and determined. "I have to go, I have to talk to her."
"Because you think that you can calm her down?" I have to admit that it's something I should have thought of; Lexi will do anything for Kieron, why not leave a room?
"Because I skipped a chapter in the story," Kieron answers, making his way to the floo room. "This part isn't meant for you."
Both Theo and I follow.
The door opens easily this time; I was right, Lexi moved away. She's staring at the wall, looking at two different squares of what I swear are the same color. The room is bare; we'd gotten rid of the old crib and drawers the last owners had left because Lexi decided that she wanted to buy new ones; the baby's own things, not leftovers. She keeps her back to me, pretending not to notice even though she knows I'm here - she stiffens when I wrap my arms around her waist.
"I'm so sorry," I whisper sincerely. "I'd never intentionally hurt you and I hate myself for doing so now. It's just been a really bad couple of days."
It takes a few moments of silent prayers and I have to hold my breath to keep from sounding so loud, but Lexi eventually responds - she puts her hands over my own and squeezes. "I know. Where did you go?"
"To see you dad. Kieron was there, too."
That has her turning around, checking me out. "And you made it out in one piece?"
"He told me about what happened, why your parents got divorced," I tell her, needing her to know. "He told me that you're scared of being like her."
"It's partly true, but Keiron doesn't know as much as he thinks," she mutters. "You think that's why I'm angry with her, why I hate her?" I nod uncertainly. "It's not. I don't know why Kieron did what he did, he gets angry and he does stupid things, it's just who he is. I stayed with him because he wanted me to, but I was only four then. I learnt pretty quickly that Big Brother can't help but have drama in his life. He exaggerates, makes things worse than they are, and while he's always honest, he doesn't tell the whole truth. He misses bits out. I learnt pretty quickly that he did the same about Mum."
The chapter he wants to tell her about. I'm sure it's the same.
"Then why do you hate her?"
Lexi's eyes are still red and wet from before, still susceptible to tears she's doesn't seem to be afraid to let fall today. Appearance used to be everything just so that no one would see her when she was sad. Now, if she even notices the paint on her cheek, she doesn't care, or her figure or not being as sociable as she used to be. Already, she's not like her mother. She just doesn't see it yet.
"My parents' marriage was over a long time ago, what happened with Kieron just finished them off," she tells me softly. "I overheard them yelling about it once. I was only four, I didn't understand, but I had a friend who lived across the road and she went with her dad every weekend. She was okay, so I thought I'd be okay, too. Then everything happened; they got the divorce, got joint custody and we saw Mum some weekends if Dad managed to get Kieron there, not at all if he couldn't because I wouldn't leave him."
She runs her hand through her hair; she hates telling this story, she hates crying. She finally drops her hand onto her stomach, rubbing in soothing circles. I take her hands in mine, silently telling her that she can continue. "I figured out Kieron's issue with the truth when I was twelve, but that didn't matter because she gave up when I was eight. She couldn't handle Kieron anymore, so she gave Dad full custody. She didn't fight like he did, she didn't try like my friend's parents did. She was never the maternal type, but she tried for my dad. And she was okay until all of this. I don't hate my mother, Albus, I'm angry with her."
I pull her to me, wrap my arms around her and hold her tightly. "What if I do something stupid? One stupid thing is all it takes for my family to fall apart," she sobs.
"That won't happen to you, I promise. I'm here."
"Dad was there."
"Your dad didn't love your mum like I love you," I whisper into her ear.
I feel her freeze as she let's the words sink in and I start to imagine the worst. Until she speaks. "I know. I love you, too." Lexi pushes back a little, just enough to see the tiniest hint of a smile. It's the biggest I've seen in a few days. "Thank you."
"Do you wish Kieron would tell you his reasons?" I ask, just about managing to not glance at the door.
"Sometimes," she shrugs. "Other times I just think that he's a bastard with a temper that sometimes makes him seem mean when he's actually a scared little boy, who eavesdrops behind doors."
Kieron groans, stepping inside and at least able to look guilty. "How did you know?"
"I smelt your cologne the second you got to the door." He discreetly sniffs his collar; she knocks my shoulder. "That's for not telling me."
I apologize quickly; we're a step away from being argument free. I'm keeping it that way. "Is that the only reason you said all of this? So, your brother would know?"
"At first. But now that I have, I kind of feel better."
"There's only one chapter left," Kieron says. "She told me not to wonder off that day and I was good, I stayed with her. Then I needed to go to the bathroom," he scoffs. "I tried to tell her, even pulled on her coat to get her to look at me, and I thought that she'd heard me. But she hadn't paid attention, so she wasn't there when I got back. I was so angry with her; she promised we'd spend the day together, even when we were with her friends she wouldn't ignore me, she said, and she wasn't there. I was seven years old, in my eyes Mum had lied again. So, I ran away. I just wanted to go home, instead I got lost. Draco found me, she'd called him and the Aurors, desperate, he said. I didn't care that she'd noticed I wasn't with her and came running back to look for me, pretty quickly, I heard, and I didn't care that I was the one who moved; I hated her for forgetting me when she'd promised. I told you to stay with me instead because I knew you'd listen and I shouldn't have, that wasn't fair. I hated her for childish, selfish reasons and was too stubborn to stop it. I shouldn't have dragged you into it."
"Why are you bringing this up now?" Lexi asks, more curious than suspicious.
"Because you're worried and it makes you sad, which makes me sad. You're my sister and I hate it when you're sad, especially when I'm the cause. When I overheard Albus and Dad talking, I had to," he answers her. "When I overheard Dad and Annie, I wanted to."
"Dad and Annie?"
"Hmm. She was at the house the other day; he invited her over for dinner. They're getting to know each other, they like each other," he explains. "I snuck in to get a few of my law books and they were talking about her kids. Her daughter was asking if they would have to call Dad 'Daddy' and not see theirs anymore. I was thinking about how much it would suck to be in that situation. Then I realized that we kind of are, it doesn't matter that we're older than those kids. She could be our stepmother. I like her, but I don't know if I want to call her 'Mum'. I have a mum."
He says that reluctantly, which really doesn't surprise me given their history.
"She keeps popping up in our lives recently," he continues. "Asking about you, asking about me, and as weird as that is I kind of thought it was be a good thing for you, if you want to talk to her. Maybe one day she'll be in our lives so much that your kid will be calling her 'Grandma'. Personally, I'd pay to see that. Either way, I'm inviting her to the engagement party. If she's really good, or if I haven't hurt her, I might invite her to the wedding."
Lexi leans in. "Wait for it." I can't help but look confused, so confused, right now. "This is a joke; he's messing or it's someone else under Polyjuice. Wait for it."
Rolling his eyes, Kieron holds up his hands, "Oh, it's me, I assure you. Although, i surprise myself. If it was any other day, hearing that he'd upset you would have me breaking your little friend's nose."
"Boyfriend," she corrects just to tease him, finally wiping her tears away.
"Whatever." I hold back a laugh when she mutters that it's definitely him. "I do feel lightheaded, though. This whole being nice to her stuff is already making me ill; I only started to think about it a couple of days ago and I haven't even seen her yet. I should eat... something... food... Nicky!"
Kieron suddenly takes off, faster than I've ever seen him. Clearly he's just remembered that he's having dinner with my cousin tonight... Then again, so did I. Lexi will probably make him apologize for just running out, make him feel guilty about loving his fiance more than his sister. He knocks into Theo on his way, who'd promised to stay downstairs, but I bet had been listening in the hall, too.
"Everything okay now?"
"Almost," I assure him, my eyes still on Lexi. "Now that we're good and there's no worry about us and we even said 'I love you', I'm thinking we make the second biggest bedroom the nursery."
"You mean your room?" she asks.
"No, see considering that I spend most of my time in your room, I'm just going to move my stuff into there," I let her know, like it's nothing. But on the inside, I'm freaking out a little. This is new and strange and what if she says no?
"Fine, but I'm keeping the left side of the bed." I nod; I prefer the right anyway. "And I'm not moving my clothes; you'll just have to fit yours in."
"Compared to yours, a little space is all I need," I smirk.
"I can't believe I'm hearing this," Theo says to himself, going on about his daughter's love life and therapy. "I'm going to go, I have things to do. Have fun with the nursery."
Lexi pauses our chat to hug her dad and say good bye, then makes me follow her to my now old room to check out where everything will go in a bigger space.
"Anything else I need to know now that we're not arguing?"
I shrug, leaning against the doorframe. "I sleep in my underwear."
Yeah, that earns me a look.
A/N: Finally a new chapter. What did you think - of the family situation that's finally out? Of Al and Lexi? Theo and Annie? Please let me know. :)
I hope you enjoyed.
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