(A/N: Everything that happened in the episode that aired for Halloween in Llanview takes place up until Evangeline tells John to go look for Natalie.)
"Are you sure youíre as okay about this Natalie, John thing as you seem?"
I turn towards Nora with a knowing grin on my face. "Natalieís not a problem unless I make her one. Now why would I want to do that?"
"Maybe because she was a problem up until Friday before you left."
I walk towards the couch and sink into it, patting the seat next to me. Nora comes over and sits in the seat.
"Well if you just had the weekend that I had, you wouldnít be worried about Natalie either."
"Are you going to tell me about it or am I going to have to guess?"
"Where was I before John came in?"
"You were telling me about what happened today."
I sit back and a sloppy grin comes to my face as I think about what a wonderful weekend I had. Definitely the best that I can remember.
"Ok, so we woke up really early this morning because Nana insisted that we go to church. I should have expected it, since every time I go home for the weekend we all have to go, but anyway... So we get up early, get ready, have Sunday breakfast with my family and go to church."
"Youíre circling yourself Evangeline. Get to the real story."
I give her an indignant look. "Do you want to hear this or not?"
"You know I do."
I smile and shake my head as I continue. "Ok, so I told you about Kali and how she immediately took to John and how John took to her. I swear the whole weekend, they were practically inseparable. So it was the end of the service and we were standing around waiting for Nana, Mom, Allie and Jessie who were off talking to their friends. John had been holding Kali all day, so I go to him and offer to take her since he must be tired. And while he was in the middle of handing her to me, this woman, who was a visitor, comes over to us and says, "What a gorgeous little girl you two have." I was so shocked; I couldnít think of a thing to say. And it seemed too personal to explain everything to her. John, who must have sensed my discomfort.... maybe it was because my mouth was hanging open slightly, he glances at me and smiles and says to the lady, "Thanks."
Nora gives me a weird look. "Um, Iím not trying to be mean, but whatís the point?"
"That is the whole point. I donít know! When he said thanks, it felt so normal and right, like it was something we encountered every day. And I donít know what to make of it."
"And that is driving you crazy, isnít it?"
I laugh. "You know me too well."
"Yes I do. Weíll get back to that, but right now I want to know why your feelings towards Natalie and Johnís relationship have suddenly changed. I mean I said relationship and it was connected to their names and you didnít even so much as blink."
"Nora, John spent the whole weekend with me and the rest of my crazy family. And when we got back to Llanview, you know what he wanted to do? He wanted to take me out to dinner. And then we had the beginnings of a romantic evening until we were interrupted. At first I was a little annoyed, but then I realized that if John spent a whole entire weekend with me, I have nothing to worry about. I also realized how insecure and distrustful Iíve been. John and Natalie are just really good friends and sheís going through a rough time right now. She needs him and although it can be a little annoying at times, I have to learn to accept it. And I trust him enough to do the right thing."
"Well Iím glad. Because I think that you and John have something really good, and I would hate to see you lose that."
I smile. "Sooo.... speaking of us and relationships, how are you and Daniel doing?"
I canít help but notice the smile drain a little.
"I donít know. We have chemistry; I canít deny that. But we donít have that much of a connection. He doesnít like to do most of the things that I like to do. I mean come on. He wonít even take me dancing."
"Nora. You know not every person in the world is as great a man as Bo. You canít compare him to Daniel because theyíre totally different."
"I know, but Evangeline, Matthew doesnít even like him. How can I be with someone that my son doesnít like?"
"I think youíre more worried about if Bo likes him."
"Evangeline, the fact of the matter is that if Iím trying to find every reason under the sun why Daniel and I shouldnít be together, maybe we shouldnít be together."
I give her a mournful look. "Are you sure this has nothing to do with Bo?"
"Iím pretty sure."
I continue to stare at her.
"Stop it Evangeline!"
I give her my best innocent look before asking, "Stop what?"
"You know what youíre doing."
"No, I donít Nora. Just tell me what it is and maybe Iíll stop."
"Staring me down wonít work. Iím not John and I donít cave every time you give me the puppy dog eyes. So stop trying to manipulate me into saying what you want me to hear."
I give her an indignant glare. "I am not manipulative. And I donít give anyone puppy dog eyes because they stopped working for me when I was seven."
She laughs. "Donít get upset. I was only joking. Although it is true that John gives in to your every whim."
"Evangeline, I very highly doubt that just anyone could have gotten John to dress up two consecutive days. And all you had to do was say please."
"Nora, I could have sworn we were talking about you and Bo. Stop tying to change the subject."
"There is no me and Bo. So stop talking about it." One glance at Nora and I know that the slightest of smirks would mean the end of my life. And as lives go, mine is pretty great and I donít want to lose it.
Just then my phone rings and I half leap across the room to get to it, ignoring the smug look that Nora gives me.
"Hello!" I answer breathlessly. John chuckles on the other line, bringing a grin to my face.
"Did you run to the phone?"
"Not really. Did you find Natalie yet?"
"Yeah, she was at the graveyard. I took her home and now Iím on the way back to the station. Are you still there?"
"Yep, I was just talking to Nora about some girl stuff."
I can hear the grin in his voice as he says, " Hmm. So basically that means that you two were gossiping about Bo, Daniel and me."
"Quite the modest one, arenít we?"
"Hey, Iím only speaking of what I know is true."
"You got me there Detective. You know me all too well."
Weíre both silent for a while until John asks, "Can you wait around another five minutes for me to get back? Iíd like to pick up our evening where we left off."
"Iíd like that too. Iíll see you in a few."
When we finally get off of the phone, I turn to Nora, who grins and shakes her head.
"So whenís the wedding?"
This might be the dumbest decision that Iíve ever made, but in my defense, she started it.
"One might safely ask the same question of you and Bo."
Nora pulls the cushion from the side of the couch that I was sitting on and chucks it at my head. As I duck, I think to myself, ĎMaybe not so safe.í
I retrieve the pillow from where it landed and prepare to throw it back at Nora, but sheís armed and ready with the remaining cushion. So I hit her in the arm with the one that Iím holding.
This of course wages a full out war. Weíre hitting each other so hard and laughing so loudly that we donít even notice that someone else was in the room with us until Nora hits me especially hard and I go careening backwards. Right into a warm, solid mass of muscle and flesh.
I turn around to meet a pair of amused crystal blue eyes. "You ladies having fun?"
"Well, being hit hard enough that I spun across the room wasnít," I say, pausing to glare slightly at Nora and then turn back to John with a grin, "but I definitely liked the end result."
Before John can respond, Nora pretends to gag and says, " Why donít you two stop making cow eyes at each other and get a room?"
"Last time I noticed, an office was a room, Nora."
"Oh my goodness," she groans, "tell me that you arenít serious."
John and I laugh, before I say, "No, Iím not, but I think I speak for John and myself when I say that the look on your face was completely priceless."
"And I think I speak for Evangeline and myself when I say, have a good night." he says, taking my hand and pulling me out the door.
When we get to my apartment, we take off our jackets and head into the kitchen to continue the conversation we started on the way over here. I have to admit, itís not one of my most intelligent debates, but we are having fun.
"Carving pumpkins is not lame." I say, trying to put the pumpkin in my arms down without smashing it or anything on the counter top. Itís obvious that I wonít be too successful and John clears off a spot on the counter for me to rest the pumpkin on.
"Evangeline, I havenít carved a pumpkin since I was five. I think that constitutes as lame. And besides the fact that Halloween is practically over..."
"Well, better late than never, I always say."
He doesnít look like heís going to relent any time soon. "Do I really have to?"
"No, but itíll be fun. Come on. Please?"
"Oh all right. But if you tell anyone, I will deny it."
I roll my eyes. "Drop the tough guy act, would ya?"
"This is not an act,"he says, gesturing towards himself. "I am a tough guy."
"The last I heard, tough guys donít buy flowers for their girlfriend and her mother and grandmother."
"It is possible to be a tough guy and a gentleman at the same time."
"Youíre sweet and sensitive and mushy and altogether not a tough guy." I stop him before he can protest. "And that is just the way I like you."
"Why were we even arguing about this?"
"I think weíre bored. Letís get to carving this pumpkin."
As it turns out, both John and I are equally clumsy with the carving utensils and three bandaged fingers later, two for John and one for me, we decide to give it up. Instead we cut the pumpkin into pieces and I put them in my freezer to be turned into pies for Thanksgiving.
After cleaning up the kitchen, John and I decide to snuggle up in the couch and watch Beetlejuice. Less than halfway into the movie, I hear light snoring and I look up to find John fast asleep. He looks peaceful when he sleeps, all of the stress and worry lines disappearing and showing a side of John that I like to think nobody but me knows.
I take the throw that normally resides on the back of my couch and pull it over the both of us. I sit up momentarily and brush my lips across his cheek before laying back down. He smiles faintly before beginning to snore again.
Instead of returning my attention to the movie, I canít help but think about how oddly domestic this whole weekend was. We spent practically the whole weekend with my family and then when we get back to Llanview, our romantic evening was interrupted by unforeseen events. And now John just fell asleep in the couch in the middle of a movie and Iím starting to think it might be a good idea to do the same.
This strange and new, but definitely nice feeling of satisfaction and contentment is definitely one I could get used to. Who knows? Maybe there will be wedding bells in the near future.
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