Let's get along, shall we?


Stella Adelaide

Chapter 1: My stepbrother is my numero uno enemigo!

It has been nine long years since my father died of Pancreatic Cancer. At those ill-fated times when I am left with only my mother, I thought life will never be the same. But meeting Luscious has proved it all wrong. He entered our lives like a savior. Frankly speaking, we were indeed in need of saving; myself being bullied without no father figure to protect me, my mother being depressed and unfit to work, bills that needed to be paid and a wrecked old house without electricity. Those were tough times, and I am not going back to that kind of life. Not ever. Luscious is like the light at the end of a tunnel; a hope that flickered a new life for the both of us.

He loved my mother more than my father could have loved her. I like Luscious. He stood as my second father, loving me and caring for me like I am his own biological daughter. He was very kind to us, even protective.

And I am happy that he is going to be part of our lives. Soon, I'll finally have a complete family. My mother and Luscious are getting married one month from now. At long last, we can finally move on again. ButwhyamIsuddenlyfeelingamixedofemotions?

At this moment, I am standing outside Grigori's Restaurant a few blocks from our apartment. It's my mother's and Luscious' favorite English restaurant and has countless of times spent their anniversaries here. I turned up to look at the blinking neon lights above my head and the cold winter chill of the night began to brush on me, sending more chills down my spine. It's December and winter has found its way to our town.

Okay. I told myself to calm down. Not to fret. To stop fidgeting on my fingers. It's only a dinner date with Luscious. It's not like I am embarrassed around him or anything of peculiar thought. My mother was eager enough, No, more than enthusiastic enough to let me have a little dinner date with my soon-to-be stepfather. She said it will make us more comfortable with each other. I approve on this little dinner date, but just an hour before our allotted time of meet, Luscious texted me and the text caught me by surprise. Literally. I dropped my phone in the sink hole when I finished reading his text. Notetoself:covertheenormoussinkholeinthekitchen!

Let's meet at 8pm. My son and I will be waiting for you there. See you soon.

Son? Who invited him?

I looked down to my leather brown shoes and began curling my toes in and out. I turned back to the neon lights above my head and felt the rush of melancholy and anxiousness fight their way to my system.

"This is going to be a long night."

A waiter opened the door for me and I stepped inside the freezing restaurant. It's already cold outside, and I don't need to be turned into ice as I munch on my dinner here too. I looked around for my soon-to-be stepfather. Ishouldstopcallinghimthat. And realized, he is still not here.

Luscious is late. The waiter walked with me towards my preferred table and I asked him to make me a vanilla-flavored tea as I wait for my companions. The waiter was kind enough to bring me pretzel sticks together with my chosen drink. On the house, he said.

I waited in silence, listening to the faint sound of piano and violin being played near the counter. Moonlightsonata?Nowthat'sagoodstart.

The restaurant looked very serene and Victorian as accustomed to the chandelier lights on the ceiling, the fragrant smell of Lavender, red carpeted floors, kitchen and dining utensils in ceramics and porcelains and picture frames of QueenElizabethI and Victorian ladies with that so-called 'monalisasmile'.

I reached for my cup of tea and the smell of Vanilla eased me up a bit. I looked around for familiar faces. We live in a very small town of San Gabriel and it's quite common to see a familiar face in places you didn't think you'll find them there.

"Another set of pretzels milady?" the waiter asked.

I turned to look up at him and shook my head. Milady?Nowthat'snew.

He dismissed himself with a curtly bow and went back to his previous work of tending tables and waiting on for customers. The room began to fill up with guests eager to have a bountiful English feast. The more it began to feel crowded, the more I feel anxious. I began to feel impatient.

I was about to go to the lavatory when the door of the restaurant burst wide open and I saw Luscious face at the doorway, his black hair covered with snow. He dusted off the snow on of his gorgeous hair and waved a hand to me when he finally caught my eye.

I sat back to my chair; my hands getting sweaty, my heart racing. I took a slow sip on my cup of tea and wished I have ordered a strong flavored tea that will ease me from my fidgeting.

I don't know exactly why I am getting anxious at? Is it because I am finally meeting Luscious' biological son of whom I have learned is very rebellious in his own way. Luscious told me that he hadn't have enough time to introduce his son to me and my mother, seeing that his son is staying with his biological mother up town and that his ex-wifeis unhappy with the turn of events.

I was raised by my introvert mother. And having to share common genetic traits with her also makes me one hell of an introvert. I am really not used being around with people; sure enough I can't be left alone with two men, even though one of them is like a family now. Introvert. That is basically my numerouno characteristic.

"Here you go sir," the same waiter gestured Luscious to our table.

Luscious smiled at me once he found his seat just across from me. I smiled back at him.

"Sorry I was late. I have to drag my idiot son here." Luscious sat down on his seat and gestured for the waiter. He ordered his favorite dishes while I agreed to let him order our food. I am not exactly a fan of English dishes. But who knows, maybe a change is not that bad.

Looking back to the door, I began to get curious. Where is his son?

"Luscious? Where is your son, then?" I asked.

"Don't worry about him. He's just outside, smoking cigarette. Did I mention, he's one heck of a smoker?" he grinned brightly. I dare not to comment anymore.

But this worries me. I don't like being around with people who smokes. It's not because I am very picky with my choice of company but I have respiratory problems. I am asthmatic and being around with someone who smokes, not to mention loves smoking 24/7 is a big big no no for me! The smell of smoke is enough to make me race for my breath.

Luscious turned to look at me again. "It's best if you keep away from him. I just wanted you to know my son before the two of you become stepsiblings. He's not like that when he was younger. I don't know what happened to him?" Luscious voice sounded a bit guilty but I ignored to comment on further. It's best if I keep my mouth shut of this topic.

Then I had a thought: rebellious children have their own reasons. As for Luscious' son, his rebelliousness is practically from the separation of his parents. I take note not to blame that on my stepbrother.

I pushed my chair back and stood up. "Excuse me. I need to go to the lavatory." Ineedtostopusingthatterm.It'sveryformal.

Luscious smiled and nodded his head.

I walked towards the bathroom. And just as I was about to enter the ladies' room, the front door of the restaurant burst open and I found a very handsome young man lurking at the doorway. He was looking for someone and I noticed that a swirl of white smoke circled around him. Smoke? My eyes went wide as plates.

Could this handsome young man be Luscious' son? And why does he look very familiar to me? Black disheveled hair, eyes hidden away by thin spectacles, average in height and wears too many black clothing, white-skinned and badass in every way.

I ignored my urge to use the bathroom. I sneaked towards the end table just next to the piano and found myself looking at the young man. The waiter pointed to our table and I looked back to find Luscious waving a hand. The young man walked passed the table I was sneakily staying then just like fate has the joys of playing around, he turned his head and I found him looking straight at me.

I felt like someone has throw a dagger to my head and I cowered like a frightened dog. He stared at me with a raised brow. I don't know exactly why he was giving me that odd look but something tells me he recognizes me.

Like what I have said before, this is a small town. People practically know each other.

My eyes did not leave him as he turned towards our table. Luscious looked weary all of the sudden as his son turned to sit down beside him. Now I know why Luscious acted that way, his son was wearing earphones and he looked too bored with his father's company.

I turned back towards the ladies' room and before I could open the door, my jaws dropped and I whirled 90 degrees back, my eyes focused to Luscious' son.

"This is not happening!" I placed both of my hands to the side of my face like what anime characters do in a time such as this. I left the ladies' room and walked towards our table. Luscious turned to look up at me with an expression that seems to be amused. I looked away from his eyes and my whole attention is at his son, who apparently did not care of my presence beside him.

"What is the matter, Lyra?" Luscious' asked. "It seems like you know Gabriel." he turned to his son, who at the sound of his name turned up to look at me.

Black disheveled hair and eyes hidden by thin spectacles. I know those same brown hazel eyes. How could I forget?

"Never thought I will meet you again," My voice trailed off. "Gabriel."

Now I feel stupid. Luscious' rebellious son; the young man who looked at me a moment ago like he had recognized me from before… I know him. He ruined my life eight years ago.

That bully. I swear way back then I'll get even with him. But now that he is practically going to be my stepbrother, I don't think revenge is the best option now. Or so I think.

"Well well, if it is Lyra the slug." He smirked at him. "Right back at 'ya! Well this is such a coincidence! It's really a small small small—" he stood up and eyed me from head to foot. "World." He continued with a raised brow.

"You both know each other?" Luscious asked, bemused as ever. He thought it's magnificent that we're both familiar with each other, but the real thing is… he doesn't know what history we've both been through.

"Still the same, but let's add the bad attitude now shall we?" I grinned at him.

Gabriel laughed. "And you're still the puny little slug I've known since elementary. Well, we need to get along now won't we—" he moved closer and I found his arm on my shoulder. "Dear stepsister" he continued then he kissed me right on my right cheek. "Let's enjoy our life together now."

I looked at Luscious' with a wide struck expression. What does he mean by life together?

"I think I left too many details way back then," Luscious shook his head. "Lyra, Gabriel is going to stay with us after the wedding."

Did I hear it right? Are my ears fully functioning? Are they normal? Did I catch it correctly?

Am I going to live now… with the enemy?