Lottie put on her fine black and white flowered dress, her best gloves, and her finest hat. She set aside her parasol and her carry basket and turned her attention to Raphael. She straightened his cravat and buffed his cravat pin with her hankie. She pinned a fresh flower into his button hole and ran a polishing cloth over his silver vest buttons as he stood there huffing out his impatience. She ignored his noises of protest and took a brush to the shoulders and chest of his new coat to get the lint and dust off. He huffed out again and she rolled her eyes.
"Oh, alright already. I know you're eager. We can head out now."
He did a little double take and was clearly about to question or protest, but she held a finger to his lips. "Of course I am going with you! Not to stay, just to walk you there and see the place - and then I"ll leave you to your own devices. I promise." She made an x over her heart, pulled the cross of her crucifix to her lips and kissed it to seal her promise. He only let out a resigned sigh and offered his arm.
They walked through the dappled mid-morning light arm in arm- he with large eager steps and she with a bouncing perky gate. Finally, they arrived at the door of their destination. She could see the excitement in his eyes and it made her turn an adoring smile up at him. He dropped her arm and went to step in, but she cleared her throat with a corrective noise and caused him to freeze. The open door still in his hand, he turned to look back over his shoulder at her in question.
She stepped forward and smoothed his jacket in that way that only overly fussing mothers can. "Now, you be polite- do you hear me? This is your very first time here and so I want you to be sure to ASK before do anything too big. Ah ah ah! I know this isn't YOUR first time, but I know how you are! You'll get excited after so long, and you'll forget, and you'll just jump into it without thinking and they might not be ready for how intense you can get - or how much pleasure you'll find. So remember to ask and double check before getting into it, ok? In other words - don't forget to get consent first!" she smirked at his annoyed eye roll but also flicked his shoulder in reprimand. "Don't give me that attitude young man! I know how you can forget things when you get too eager."
She pulled out her hankie, wet it by licking it with her tongue and then stood on her tip toes to use it to wipe off a smudge on his cheek. He flinched and she raised a brow at him which made him sigh and bend closer so that she could reach his face easier. When the smudge was fully gone she gave a sharp nod of satisfaction and handed him her parasol to hold. He did so, and this time managed to keep himself from sighing or rolling his eyes. While he stood in the door holding her parasol, she dug into her basket and pulled out a brown paper bag which she handed to him. "Here. I packed you a lunch. Now, there's three meatball sandwiches in there so that you can share with the other boys - and some of the good family ginger snaps too - don't eat them all yourself. Be sure to share! But the caprese in the foil is all yours. Oh!" she dug into the basket again. "And here, I got you three fresh new pencils for your notebook." she tucked them into the inside pocket of his coat for him and patted his chest. "And you have your tools?" This time he could NOT keep himself from rolling his eyes at her. He stared at her hard as if to accuse her of asking the dumbest of all questions. "Alright, alright!" She took her parasol back from him and smiled. "It's your first day being engaged here, I just want you to do your best. Is that so bad of me?" He let out a long suffering sigh and shook his head, acting properly chastised by her defensive tone. It made her grin big and stand on tip toe to kiss him once on each cheek. "Right then. I'll be back at the end of the day to pick you up. You have fun playing with the other boys and don't make TOO big of a mess right out of the gate. Now, give me a kiss and get in there. You don't want to be late!"
He stared at her in wide eyed shock and horror - looking between her and the still open door several times before giving her a pleading look. "Nope! I'm not leaving here until you give me a kiss goodbye!" she said stubbornly before turning her head and tapping her cheek with her gloved finger. He groaned, looked around to make sure he couldn't see anyone watching, then gave her a quick peck on the cheek before physically pushing her away from the door and pointing back down the road they'd come from. Laughing with delight, she turned away from the door Styx and Stones Undertaking and left Raphael to the fun of his new job.
Making a big fuss and embarrassing him like this meant that he was less likely to give in to the pull of the bond which would help him hold out to complete a full day of work - and would also let HER attend to some sensitive business without him around. Plus, it had the added bonus of just being damn fun.
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