The Fifth and Last AU: Flower Shop
Disclaimer: I own nothing. Atlantis is owned by Disney.
A/N: Reviews are Good. This has been a subtle hint from the author - Please return to your regularly scheduled reading.The Fifth and Last AU: Flower Shop
The bell over the door jangles and, without looking up from the book he is studying intently, Vinny intones in a bored monotone, "Welcome to Santorini Flower Shop. How can I help you?"
And then there is dead silence - the sort of quite that makes him tense with odd expectation.
He looks up with trepidation, only to see his lovely (and heavily pregnant) fiancee glaring at him. Now that she has his attention, she ignores the flower displays and walks the rest of the way up to the counter and leans against it to talk to him.
"They sent me home," she mutters darkly, her arms crossed, still clad in grease-streaked, work overalls with "Audrey" sewn across the breast pocket.
"You are only about a month away now, Aude," he says carefully and she gives a harump. His eye automatically drop to the bump though, clearly visible despite her baggy clothing - the life they made together.
"Plenty of women work all the way up until their water breaks," she insists stubbornly. "Dad's just being overprotective."
Vinny doesn't say anything to this. He didn't feel he could insist - it wasn't his body after all, and he's always trusted Audrey to know herself, know her limits in the past. But watching her go to work each day as her stomach grew had started to worry him because he knows how ingrained it is for her to get her hands in whatever engine is there - even when the doctor has said to "take it easy". It's just not Aude's way to sit still when there is work that needs doing right in front of her.
And so he feels almost stupidly thankful
that Mr. Ramirez, as owner of the garage was able to lay down the law, in some small respect (that was almost entirely out of fatherly - and future grandfatherly - concern), and send her home.
Or he just sent her away from the temptation of mechanical tinkering - and she came to him. Which counts as home, really.
"You want to get changed in the back?" he offers instead. "Must be hot in your coveralls in here," he waves around indicating the rather warm controlled temperature of the room.
"Trying to get me naked, now? You know that's what got us into this mess," she teases, leaning even further over the counter towards him, her smile playful and just a tad seductive. And part of him wonders at the abrupt change in her mood, but mostly he has gotten used to it in the past few months.
So, he just rolls with it instead and enjoys kissing the wonderful mother of his child to be, before leading her into the back room and helping her take off her steel toed boots and then strip out of the heavy (and rather cumbersome) overalls. (It's a slow day and the bell will alert him to any customers - and Audrey comes first anyway.) She is more tired than she lets on and it takes much less coaxing then he thought it would to get her to take a nap on the couch in the break room.
Once she is asleep, Vin returns to the front - and his book. He glances at the cover for a moment, it's a simple book on pregnancy(one of many that he is sure have flooded the market) that he had picked up from the library - to very odd looks from the woman who had stamped the book. After all his taste were usually quite varied
- but usually with a bent towards chemistry, not human biology.
But, Audrey was special - and he wanted to do this right.
When they were growing up, since she was a few years younger than him and lived a few counties over their paths didn't cross - or shouldn't have really. Except she dated his friend for almost two years, what felt like forever
back in high school. It was something Vinny hadn't understood back then, how something long distant like that would be worth it. But Sweet always said that Audrey was different, that she wasn't like the girls at their school. That she knew who she was, what she wanted out of life.
Vinny really hadn't gotten it then - but he hadn't known her, had only seen her picture - and Sweet always seemed smarter than him in some way anyway, so he had chalked it up to that sort of maturity. The guy had ended up getting his medical degree and joining Doctors Without Borders, after all. But (lucky for him) Sweet and Audrey had broken up in an incredibly amicable fashion when he was a Senior - they were even still good friends.
It was until years later that he had run into her again while she was in town for her younger cousin's Quinceañera. Deemed hopeless at cooking and decorating by her aunts, she had been put on errand duty - one of which had been picking up a rather large order of flowers from his family's shop.
And then, seeing her in person, he had finally gotten it. The way she talked, her sense of humor, her obvious strength and confidence. He had understood what Sweet had meant all along - why, even as a High School, a boy who could have had anyone, he had been willing to be in a long distance relationship with this girl.
didn't know him
then. They had never met - and that was almost better in his mind because it allowed him to introduce himself without all the weird baggage and rumor the town might attach to him. Because while Sweet had had it all together - and gone off to college and then to help people - most of the town saw him
as a sort of burnout.
That Santorini kid who worked in his parent's flower shop and liked to play around with weird chemicals in abandoned lots.
The boy (although he was in his twenties) that had scared everyone half to death that one time when he blew up an old tree stump - and ended up making a huge crater and knocking out the electricity around half the block. Not to mention, the sound of the explosion, which set dogs barking and brought a few police cars around.
....that had been fun though - it had been an awesome sight.
But she hadn't known any of that then. She was just a beautiful woman in a tank top and worn jeans and he was just the guy in green-stained cargos helping her load her truck full of flowers, who had asked her out.
And she said yes
When those parts of him were discovered later, he was astonished by her delight in his hobby instead of scorn. And she felt there was no shame in his working at the flower shop either - after all, she worked in her father's garage.
Over three years later, there is a baby on the way, an engagement ring on her finger, and a sense of contentment - a sense that he is whole
when he looks at her (at them).
Vinny, carefully finds the place where he left off in the book and continues reading.