Fingers linked, he felt stronger— somehow. Crazy as it was, he really did feel like he had the strength to put on the mask he wanted to in order not to worry her, and he smiled lightly while he shook his head.
“No, no doctor. I’ll be fine, Elle, I promise. I just need to wash them out and put some ice on the bruises, alright? Trust me— Edward’s gotten in enough bar fights. I know how to treat bumps and bruises.”
A chuckle left his mouth and he looked at her sweetly, placing a light kiss on her smooth forehead. He stood shortly after, letting her slide off his lap and then pulling her with him.
“Let’s get headed off then? I-It… might take me a bit…”
Elle took him at his word, not about to delay any longer, and rose to her feet beside him, drawing one of his arms about her shoulders.
Just as Alfons had predicted, between his injured leg and her soldiering on beneath his weight (ill as the he was, he still had some muscle on him and Elle was no weight-lifter) the journey back to her apartment was a long, slow one: the rain sheeting down on them without reprieve from start to finish. Then, at last, they were trudging their way into a tiny elevator in the foyer of an apartment block, sodden and weary and dripping all over the floor in a way that made the night manager eye them with disaproval.
Elle pushed wet strands of hair back off her brow and leant it tiredly against the round of Alfons’ shoulder, catching her breath.
“Goodness, you’re tall,” she murmured, never having appreciated the fact more than just now when she’d been half-carrying him in an awkward, stooped shuffle. “Who do you get that from? Your father? Not that I mind - you’re just the right height for leaning on…”
She pressed her cheek to the soaked fabric of his shirt, one arm wrapped loosely about his middle while the hand of the other kept his wrist from slipping off her shoulder.
“Leo’s in for a surprise,” she murmured, an amused smile tugging at her lips.
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