Her hand climbed to his abdomen and stayed there for a while, her fingers bending into the fabric. She hadn’t closed her eyes, and it was oddly satisfying how she observed his every move, how he straightened, how he slowly moved back to kiss her more. It was slow, but there was no urgency stamped over it. Laura wasn’t in hurry allowing him to continue.
“I think we need a quieter day for change.” Laura whispered and he agreed, nodding against her hairline, peppering it with kisses. Her skin was torching hot under his touch, yet whenever his lips caressed over it, it prickled into goosebumps for a mere second.
“I have a meeting at four I can’t postpone. So you can go to beach and spend the day there?” He didn’t want to leave, but there was nothing he could do about it.
“I don’t think going for ice cream is an option now.” She chuckled and sighed tiredly.
“I’ll bring something to make it from.” He promised, and stepped back feeling the moment slip away. But this time it didn’t make him anxious and it made him pause.
They’d come through their first fight, he thought,
“I’m not that good of a cook!”
“Sorry?” He hadn’t listened what she was talking about. “I’ll teach you.”
“You know how to make ice cream?”
“It’s the only thing I do know how to make. I wanted to impress a girl and failed. But it’s nice, tastes better than buying one.” He shrugged. “And rum raisins.”
“How’re they made?”
“You take bottle of rum, drink half of it and fill the bottle with raisins. Simple!” It worked. She laughed. “Oh! Make sure they are the tiny kind, otherwise they won’t come back out.” He watched her back the rest of her t-shirts back. He wondered what she’d look like in a real dress compared to her constant flow of jeans and t-shirts. Did she even own one? He quickly glanced over the clothes and couldn’t find any.
“You have half an hour to get ready for the meetings.” She prompted suddenly, looking at his dazed face and pointed at the clock.
“You really are out of it today! You said you had a meeting at four – get ready!”
That was his cue and he went, feeling the sun’s warmth again.
When he got home, he saw Victor running his way with a small jar pressed between his fingers, his white hair haloing around his head with the sunset on the backdrop causing them to truly shine as if the boy was sun itself and his stomach dropped. Victor looked too happy and the thing in his hands…
He stopped breathing, looking at the small twisting rope-like thing in Victor’s jar. It was nicely pressed in the small glass piece with it’s zig-zag pattern clearly visible against the sunlight. It had bright light gray and it looked surprisingly young. Yet just as poisonous.
“That’s an adder!” He wheezed, his eyes as wide as the boy’s.
“No, it ain’t!” The boy dismissed his concern. “It’s a grass snake! Alik told me so!”
“ALIK!” Victor jumped on his shout, and his breathing hitched once more, seeing the glass jar yank. He reached out to catch it, but Victor pulled back, the jar safely in his hands. “Whatever you do, do NOT open that lid!”
“It’s just a snake!” The boy whined.
“Look!” Maksim forced a stern look on his face, his hands twitching from the need to remove the snake from his tiny hands, but he knew if he did it without any explanation, it would explode. Or he would, or he would kill his brother, or – so many choices and there would only be one casualty. “We’ll get you a pet snake if you so want it, but a viper will not be it! ALIK!”
Oh, god, had he really promised him a snake? He groaned and didn’t try to hide it.
“But I don’t want any of those exotic ones, I want that one!” He immediately began negotiations and for a moment he imagined a small ambassador standing in front of him, his eyes stern and clear of any emotion despite his body going on overdrive with its tiny movements he was too young to remember to control.
“Then we’ll find you a grass snake, but this snake is not it!”
“Yes it is!”
“You’re arguing with a six-year-old!” Laura came around the corner, laundry load on her hands. The ninja shined brightly against the snow white sheets and Eiffel tower of t-shirts and pants. “Evening!” She walked over to them, stood by Maksim and in the privacy of the load gave him a quick peck on his cheek. “So! What are you arguing about?”
He was not taking blame on this one, he decided and took a step back, presenting the small Einstein and the jar of wonders while cringing inwardly to take it away. His jaw dropped, when he realized she wasn’t tossing the clothes nor running towards the boy to take it away. Instead, he was the main target of every pair of eyes inhabiting the house, because they had all gathered on the veranda and were now staring at him as if he’d lost his mind.
“Alik, care to tell me what made you the expert on snakes?” He pressed through closed teeth, glaring at his younger brother before he saw it move from the corner of his eyes and he snapped the snake jar away. The snake stared at him together with the rest of the people it seemed, when its head was pinpointed on his face as he moved the jar around.
“It’s harmless snake!” Alik tried, but Maksim shook his head and the man paled considerably. “Is not?”
Everything in front of his eyes went white. Was he really this stupid?
“WHAT THE FUCK WERE YOU THINKING?” He roared and they all flinched.