Hurdles

Our relationship. It wasn't sonnet inspiring, the story of it won't make thousands want to listen. But it was complicated and it was special to us. It was certainly more than I bargained for from just seeing a boy with a football helmet across the room.

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38. Thirty eight

I'm bored that weekend so I text Harry asking him if he wants to come over and hang out but he replies:

I got Robin an extra day because Leigha had to work. Sorry :( 

I reply:

No no, it's cool, I'll see you at school :)

He replies:

I can always bring him over? 

My initial reaction is to say no because I have no idea when it comes to kids. I have no idea if there's anything I need to do to the house before Robin comes over, like cover all the sharp corners and everything, I have no idea if we have any suitable food and drink for him, I have no idea what he's even going to do here. But I decide maybe I'm freaking out a little too much and tell Harry it's a good idea. 

He knocks on the door and I answer it, nervous. He's holding Robin in his arms and he grins at me. 

"Hey." he says and then looks at Robin. "Robin, are you going to say hello to Alice?" 

He buries his head in Harry's neck and I laugh, stepping aside to let them in. "Hey Robin!" I seem to recall Harry telling me at one point that he's obsessed with fish and my parents have suddenly developed this obsession with this tropical fish tank. "Do you like fish?" 

He looks up then, looking around the entire place. It's so cute I can't help laughing a little. "Fishies!" he exclaims. 

"Why don't you ask Daddy to show you where the fishies are and I'll get you and Daddy something to drink!" I smile at him and Harry smiles at me before going into the living room where the tank is. 

I get Harry some water and Robin some juice and go into the living room where Robin is pressing his nose up against the tank to look at them all, laughing happily. 

"He's so cute!" I tell Harry, sitting down next to him. 

"Thanks." he says, looking fondly at Robin. "I think he looks like me."

"Oh no, he must get it all from his mum right?" I say and he mock glares at me before chuckling. 

"Anyway, what were you talking about when you said you weren't good with kids?" he nudges my ribs. "You're great with him."

I raise an eyebrow. "I have fish and I got him some milk. That doesn't make me good with kids. 

"You're good with kids." he insists.

They stay for the afternoon. We do some painting at some point, I got given this huge art set from some aunt I don't really know last Christmas and I'm never going to use it so I let Robin use it to his heart's content. Harry keeps trying to go back to his house to get some kid's paints because he's nervous about how expensive the art kit is but I don't care. Much to Harry's dismay, I tell Robin he can keep the paint set so Harry can't say no to taking it home with him because Robin's so excited about it. It's just a really nice feeling to see Robin having fun and there's nothing quite like the honour of having a child actually like you. 

That night when I'm in bed, Harry calls me.

"Hey." I say, picking up. 

"Were you asleep?"

"I was getting there but don't worry about it." I laugh a little. "What's up?" 

"I just wanted to talk." he says. "I wanted to say thank you for today."

"Oh, you don't have to say thank you. It was fun."

"It was." he says, sounding happy. "Also, I can't keep this art set."

I groan. "I don't care about it, he likes it!"

"It was expensive!" 

"So?"

"So you shouldn't gift it to a one and a half year old!" he says. "Really Alice, it's too much."

"Forget about it." I say, laughing. "Dork."

He laughs too. "Alright, I'm going to let you sleep. Night."

"Night." I say and I fall asleep, hoping this weightless feeling lasts. 

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