Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Chapter 3: Two to Tango

Eleanor had been avoiding Emilio, but she knew she wouldn't be able to put him off forever. She had been doing an excellent job of hiding her pregnancy from the world, especially from her coworkers, but her brother knew, and it was Hawke who told Emilio.

"Were you ever going to tell me?" Emilio demands as soon as he's in the door.

"It's my problem to handle," Eleanor says, "There's was no reason to trouble you with it."

"No reason?" Emilio gasps, "Look, I get that you don't want a relationship with me. I know I'm not your type, being a jock and all. We got carried away in the moment, and made a mistake. But that baby you're carrying is mine, and you can't cut me out just because you aren't into me."

He's a lot more reasonable about it than Eleanor had expected. She'd assumed, and maybe even secretly hoped, he'd plead for her affection, for a chance to prove himself worthy of her. But all he's here for is the baby. "You're right," she sighs, knowing he does have rights as a father. He could take her to court if she tried to keep the baby from him. And public attention is the last thing she wants. "I'm sorry I've been avoiding you. I just felt so bad about it."

"I know," Emilio says, "I can't help but wonder what Phoenix would think of me if she came back now. I knocked up her sister. I feel like such an ass."

Eleanor can't help but laugh a little. "She'd blame me," she says, "It is my fault, after all."

"Sssh, don't say that, Princess," Emilio says, his tone comforting, "We are in this together."

Hawke has been chasing after Morrigan since he met her at Leliana's party. It's risky, because the two roommates have a fierce rivalry, and Leliana will be livid if she finds out about it.

They go on a date at the Moonlight Lounge, a gothy kind of club that Morrigan loves and Leliana does not.

They can't go back to her place, of course, and Hawke doesn't like to bring dates back to his cranky pregnant sister, but the club does have perfectly good elevators.

When Hawke gets home in the late hours after the club closes, he's greeted in the elevator by Eleanor. 

"Take me to the hospital," she says, "It's time."

Outside the hospital, Hawke takes a second to call Emilio with the news.

Emilio rushes to the hospital in time to see his daughter Amelia born.

"You didn't have to come back here with us," Eleanor says when they arrive back at her apartment, "I know you must be exhausted."

He is exhausted, and needs his sleep for the game the next day, but nothing will keep this new father from his little girl.

Once he gets Amelia settled into her crib, he passes out on the couch, too tired to make it back to his place.

"I know what you've been doing," Leliana says when he answers his phone.

"Working out?" Hawke feigns innocence. His agent has ben pushing him work on his body more, that much is true.

"You've been wading in Morrigan's swamp!" Leliana shouts.

"Right, that," Hawke sighs. It was inevitable Leliana would find out; no doubt Morrigan was gloating over it, "It didn't mean anything. I'll stop seeing her."

Leliana sighs, "Don't bother, it's too late, I've already moved on. I've been seeing Thornton Wolff, and it's been getting serious. So it's over between us."

Hawke makes himself late for work so he can have a talk with his sister.

"Leliana broke up with me today," he starts. Eleanor begins to say the expected comforting words, but Hawke raises a hand to cut her off, "I'm fine. But you should know, she says she's seeing Thornton Wolff and it's getting serious."

Eleanor visibly deflates. Since the one dinner she had with Thornton, she hadn't heard anything further from him. While she was busy hiding her pregnancy from everyone, she hadn't exactly been pursuing him. And now he'd slipped through her fingers. "You have to get her back," Eleanor says, "Get her to leave him."

"You're crazy, you know that?" Hawke laughs. "I was sleeping with her roommate. She won't break up with anyone to get back with me."

Eleanor smiles at her brother, "Don't sell yourself short, Hawke. You know women are putty in your hands. You could get her back, if you tried."

For his sister's sake, Hawke invites Leliana over the next day for a friendly chat. "I'm concerned about you," Hawke tells her, "I'd hate to see you rush into something with Thornton just because you're pissed at me."

Leliana laughs, "You aren't the center of my world, you know. I have other reasons for seeing Thornton besides getting back at you."

"Like what?" Hawke demands.

Leliana sighs, exasperated. "I don't have to explain myself to you."

"Of course you don't," Hawke concedes, "And if you really are in love with him, then I'm happy for you. I'm just worried about you, Leli. You always said you hated business types, and you don't seem to have much in common with him. I know I did some stupid things, and I don't deserve you. I just don't want you to end up in a worse relationship."

"You are sweet, Hawke," Leliana says, taking his hands. "But I don't think altruism is the only reason you asked me here."

"No, I want another chance with you, Leli," Hawke says. "It kills me to think of you with that stuffed shirt."

Unable to resist him, Leliana promises to break up with Thornton.

The couple celebrate their reunion in the shower before they have to head out to work.

With her rival out of the way, Eleanor's path is clear. Thornton invites her to his place the same day Leliana breaks it off with him.

Thornton's been promoted to CEO and wants to celebrate.

Eleanor reminds him of her own promotion to Department Head. He places a hand on her shoulder in congratulation, his fingers lingering longer than is strictly necessary for a friendly gesture.

Eleanor decides the time is right, and moves in closer.

The evening ends exactly where she wanted it to.

"Why don't you stay the night?" Thornton offers when she slips out of his bed. 

"I better go," she sighs. She can't tell him that she left Amelia with a babysitter and isn't sure when her brother will be dragging himself home, since she's kept her baby a secret from him. "We should avoid office gossip."

"Good thinking," Thornton says, "See you tomorrow."

Eleanor waited for Emilio before bringing out Amelia's birthday cake. He rushed over as soon as the game was finished, not even taking the time to change.

Poor Amelia is too tired to stay up for another second after the cake is served, and her uncle Hawke puts her to bed.

"I'm glad you could make it," Eleanor says, her voice sultry. Thornton hasn't been as available lately. At work, they are completely professional, with no flirting, no glances, no hint at all that they'd been together. And after work, there had been nothing. Eleanor is sure he's just busy, his new position as CEO requires a lot of late meetings. But whatever the reason, she'd been feeling the lack of a man, and a powerful lust takes over just from standing near Emilio.

"I wouldn't miss it for anything. Thanks for waiting up for me," Emilio says, beaming, "We won the game, by the way, and I got promoted to team captain."

Eleanor gives him a congratulatory kiss. "Why don't you stay tonight?" she whispers in his ear, "You can spend some time with Amelia in the morning before practice."

"I'd love that," Emilio says, "But maybe I should sleep on the couch?"

"There isn't room for us both on the couch," Eleanor says, nibbling on his ear. "Go, get into bed. I'll clean up out here and join you in a minute."

The minute it took to clear the cake plates was more than Emilio could keep his eyes opened. When Eleanor gets into her bed, he's fast asleep. 

Her alarm wakes them early in the morning. "I'm sorry, I fell asleep on you," Emilio whispers, "Let me make it up to you."

"I'll be late for work," Eleanor half-protests.

"I promise to make it worth it, Princess," Emilio says, and makes good on that promise. Eleanor goes to work that morning a little late, but feeling better than she ever had before. Though Thornton didn't say anything, Eleanor could tell he noticed the flush in her cheeks during the morning meeting.

Hawke watches in dismay as Emilio heads out of Eleanor's bedroom to the nursery. Whatever his sister is up to, someone is bound to get hurt. And there will be a mess for Hawke to deal with.

Emilio spends the morning hours before his practice starts with his daughter, and wondering about his relationship with her mother. 

Challenge Notes:
I love SP. As soon as I have Eleanor poised to get with Thornton, I get a message that he and Leliana are going steady. So, that got worked into the story.
Amelia's favorite color is Sea Foam, so I've done the nursery for It's So You.
The roll for Generation 2 is Single Parent, 2 kids, Military career. Goal is Opportunist and Misc. Fun is Live Your Trait. Amelia is the heir. 
I still have to have one more child, and I think it will be Hawke's. No idea who the mother will be on that yet. Well, I have ideas, lol, but I have not settled on one yet.


  1. I swear in the birthday cake picture that Amelia is in a blue wrap... I was like wait---what?

    I'm excited to see how Eleanor's two relationships work out! I also love how you have Morrigan and Liliana pitted against each other, so true as they're opposites!

  2. Have you ever romanced both Morrigan and Leli with the same Warden?
    The rivalry is hilarious. And Leli actually does accuse you of wading in Morrigan's swamp.

  3. Heh... I love Hawke's facepalming there. And the bedroom view of the bridge during sexy times was epic.

    Once again blogger is being rude to me, and I can't see the side links. Next time they pop up, I'll have to bookmark your outtakes page. =(

    Currently I can only navigate blogs by clicking on "older post" and "newer post".

    Also love the name. Amelia... Emilio. Lol. Awful, Raven. Awful.

  4. I love your blog(s) because your characters are so believable and unique! Writing separate characters and giving each one a personality is so hard and you do it so well!!

  5. Thanks guys!
    Here's a link to the out takes page:
    it sucks that blogger is being rude.

    Yeah, Amelia/Emilio. I just didn't have a name ready and went with the first thing that came to mind, lol.

  6. I honestly don't understand why I love Eleanor so much. Getting your brother to seduce the competition... wow. Hawke is such a good brother for going along with her plans.

    Amelia is so beautiful. I love her eye colour. Its so soft.

  7. I love the Morrigan/Leliana rivalry; reminds me so much of my Warden who fooled around. :)

    I noticed one small error: Underneath the picture of Eleanor and Emilio right after putting Amelia to bed, you typed Amelia instead of Eleanor as the one who says "I'm glad you could make it." Which made me giggle for all the wrong reasons...

    Great Chapter! And I can't wait to see who the mother of Hawke's eventual baby will be. ; )

  8. Thanks, Giga, I fixed the typo.

    I love that Eleanor doesn't give up easily. If she's thwarted, she'll find another way. Usually a way that involves using her brother.

  9. Eleanor is so devious! I love it!

    I'm not so sure about Emilio. He's SO sweet and he seems like a great father, but at the same time I feel like he needs to stand up to Eleanor. It's like he gets himself into these situations. Even so, I can't help but feel bad for the guy.

    Your writing is amazing. Here I am, pitying a man I'm not even sure I like all that much. Great job!

    (I feel bad that I'm always the last one to comment. I'm just not as quick as everyone else! Lol.)

  10. Hey, I'm last this time Buckley, I was out at a movie :) I recommend The Help for anybody who hasn't seen it, almost as good as the book :)

    I love how Amelia looks like Emilio and Rav-I mean Eleanor :P I can't wait for a Thornton baby too :)

  11. See, I'm the odd one out. I'm on Emilio's side and think he's much too good for Eleanor. But I do agree with Buckley that he needs to stand up to her. She needs a good kick up the arse (you know... pregnancy would do that for most people) and he should be the one to give it.

    I think Thornton must have found out about the baby. It's got to be impossible to keep that secret from your boss, especially when you were pregnant while working there (not just getting the job afterwards).

  12. Thanks, guys.
    I love having characters that inspire such different reactions. I love them all, even with their flaws.
    Emilio does get himself into these situations, because he's the trusting sort who believes in the good intentions of others.
    Thornton does not know about the baby, yet.
    And, ebec, I don't think there will be a Thornton baby. At least not in the Roman family. Thornton does have a daughter with his ex-wife Morgana, and unless SP has him impregnate someone else, that's all he'll have.

  13. Wow, Raven's taking so much flack. Where's the annoyance towards Hawke? He betrayed a girl and all.

    I guess no one cares because that woman was seeing someone else behind HIS back. xD

  14. I feel sorry for Emilio, he's far too good for Eleanor