"What happened this time?" Nico had the pots boiling with broth. As usual, he spent some time chopping and preparing the ingredients in the correct order to make his masterpieces.
"I..I might have said something..to..set.. her off." Ellie was closed mouth about it while putting on her apron.
"Has he called her?" Nico wanted to know about J.
"No. I think he wants to surprise her." She went to tend to some dumpling dough.
"Surprise her?" Nico looked out of the corner of his eye. He smiled as he looked out on the street. Was he already here?"Oh, she'll be surprised all right." Nico thought he saw J walk by.
"What?" Ellie looked to him.
It must not have been J, after all. But Nico was certain it must be him. He'd know J's smile anywhere. He hadn't changed that much, had he?
"Never mind." He took an order then. What was J up too?
Of course, as he stirred the hot liquid, he hoped J didn't do something stupid. What if he came back engaged? Or already married. What could they do for their Kaori then?
He guessed he'd have to man-up and console her. Except, he wasn't much for that sort of thing. Most girls made him nervous..unless it was Ellie.
He winced with disgust. What if he had to come between Kaori and Ellie? Which one would he choose? Kaori was always dear to J. At least, he imagined them married one day, and he and Ellie would be God-parents to Kaori and J's bundle of joy.
He practically winked, wondering if it had already changed, and he didn't even know it.
Soon enough, the orders came. Lots of them. He needed to hurry, putting the meals together, quickly. Ellie would put on the finishing touches. Nico didn't have time to dwell on how to fix this for Kaori.
Before he knew it, he was in a sweat as the orders finally wound down. They'd be out of here by 10 p.m. sharp.
"You're being so quiet." Ellie mentioned.
"Huh?" He looked at her, almost forgetting all the scenarios he'd imagined. Being the father to all of Kaori's children. It was starting to make him tired. He winced hard.
Ellie nudged him. She smiled. "You're such dreamer." She remembered how he used to talk about being a rocker...only he didn't know anything about music.
Nico smiled back, even if he felt a little guilty, about being with Kaori in his imaginary world. Deep down, he knew who he was really meant to be with, and he was looking at her.
"What?" Ellie said.
Before he could say anything, the door jangled and someone was here with presents.