Jasmine

“Ray.”

We were both standing by the door. None of us moved or talked for the past ten minutes.

“Are you ready?”

He didn’t answer.

“Ray?”

“Hmm?”

“Are you ready?”

“Uhu”

He clearly wasn’t. I take his hand and stand in front of him.

“I know you’re nervous. I am too.”

“I’m not nervous. I’m okay.”

“Okay.”

He took out his keys and opened the door. He let me through first – always a gentleman – then closed the door behind him. The TV was on, we could hear it.

“They’re in the living room.”

I nod. He put his keys on the counter then looked at his reflexion in the mirror. He ran his hand into his hair then turned to me and smiled. I held him in my arms for a few seconds then kissed his forehead. He whispered:

“Don’t worry about it too much darling.”

I let him go gently but kept both of my hands on his back and whispered back:

“I want you to know that I’m so proud of you.”

He smiled, it was a little forced this time.

“I felt so much better when I did it.”

“But it’s different here. Mine are not like yours.”

“I know but it will be okay. I’m with you.”

He smiled again.

“Let’s get this shit done then.”

I shake my head.

“You don’t have to, you know? Definitely not with this attitude.”

“Oh really? We’ve been having this conversation for months and you’ve made it clear that we didn’t have a choice.”

“That’s not true. You can do it later if you’re not ready now…”

“Look I’m not going to argue with you right now…”

“Ray?”

We both turned to his mother leaving the living room holding a tray with two empty mugs. Jasmine tea, probably. His parents always drank Jasmine tea. No sugar. Three cups a day, at least. Jasmine tea always smells nice. I like his parents very much.

“Hey mom.”

“Hello Mrs Williams.”

“Hello Tim.”

I smiled to her and silently prayed she wouldn’t hate me in the next few minutes. Ray took the tray from her hands and put it on the counter.

“What’s wrong honey?” she asked in her sweet voice.

Ray – always the drama king – remained silent and lead her back to the living room. I quickly followed. His father was still watching TV, he turned to us and smiled.

“What’s with the long faces boys?”

“I caught them ‘not wanting to argue'”, Mrs Williams joke.

Her husband giggled: “Well neither do we.”

Ray stood in front of his father as his mother sat on the couch next to her husband.

“Come on then, have seat both of you. We’ll make some more tea!”

Ray remained silent for little more as I came closer to him. And I stood there next to him and waited, my heart skipping beat after beat.

“Mom, dad. I’ve got something very important to tell you.”

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