He pulled me into his house, holding my hand, smiling excitedly. “Mom? Dad? You home?” Liam shouted, looking into the empty lounge.
I could hear voices in the kitchen. “Yeah, honey. We’re in here,” Pat called.
Liam smiled happily and dragged me to the kitchen. Pat was baking cookies and Rick was busy trying to eat the cookie mix straight from the bowl, making her laugh and hit his hand with the wooden spoon. I chuckled at the scene. They were always like this, she was the perfect housewife and mother, and he adored her and Liam, which was really sweet.
“Hey, Amber. Long time no see,” Rick said, grabbing me into a hug, which made my heart race.
“Hey, Rick. Hi, Pat. How are you?” I asked cheerfully.
“We’re great! Amber, I would hug you but I’m covered in cookies, honey.” Pat frowned, holding up her hands in evidence.
“Yeah, I can see that! They smell so good,” I said, eyeing the already baked ones on the plate on the counter. She passed the plate to me and I happily took one, smiling. “Thanks.”
“Hey! You said I couldn’t have one because they were cooling,” Rick whined, pouting, making me laugh; she picked up a cookie and tossed it at him with a wink.
“Um guys, I was wondering if you wanted to meet my girlfriend. Maybe she could have dinner with us tonight?” Liam suggested, putting his hand on the small of my back.
A grin spread across Pat’s face. She looked so happy that I actually thought she was actually holding back tears. “Oh, Liam! I’d love to meet her! I still can’t believe you have a girlfriend. You spent all this time saying that there was only one girl for you and now you’re finally able to move on and actually date someone!” she cooed, practically bursting with excitement and pride.
“Yeah OK, Mom, tone it down a bit, huh?” Liam mumbled, rolling his eyes.
“So, what time is she coming? Have you met her, Amber? Is she nice?” Pat asked, beaming at me. I looked at Liam, unsure what to say. This whole situation was laughable. And did she say that Liam had always said there was only one girl for him?
“Actually, Mom, she’s here right now,” Liam said proudly, rubbing my back gently and smiling at me. His eyes bore into mine, making my whole body feel a little hotter. Pat jumped and wiped her hands on a cloth, quickly fixing her hair frantically, before she practically ran to the hallway. OK, weird! “Mom, what are you doing?” Liam asked, laughing; I noticed that Rick was staring at Liam’s hand on my back, a wide grin on his face.
“Well, is she parking the car or something?” Pat asked, looking back at Liam before glancing at the front door again. He laughed harder and Rick and I chuckled too.
“Mom, this is my girlfriend. Her name is Amber Walker.” Liam beamed proudly at me as I pressed myself closer to him.
Pat’s face snapped to look at me, shocked. Slowly, her face turned to happiness, then complete bliss, as she laughed and ran to me, grabbing both me and Liam into a big hug. “Oh my gosh! Finally, you two got together? Finally!” she almost screamed, jumping up and down on the spot.
Liam wrapped his arm round my waist and pulled me impossibly closer to him. “Yeah, finally,” he confirmed, rolling his eyes, but looking amused at the same time. Rick put his hand out to Liam. They shook hands in a very grown up gesture, before he pulled him into a bear hug.
After all of the excitement had died down, we had dinner. It was really nice to be sat with Liam’s parents like this, they honestly didn’t stop smiling. Every time Liam and I touched each other, Pat would sigh happily, beaming at us.
“Right, you boys can clear the table!” Pat ordered, grabbing my arm and pulling me to the lounge. “I am so happy for you two. Liam’s told you he’s been in love with you for years, right?” she beamed. My breath caught in my throat at her choice of words. She thought that Liam was in love with me? He wasn’t in love with me, was he? Did he really whisper that he loved me last night before I fell asleep?
“Er, he told me he’s liked me for a long time, yeah,” I mumbled, a little uncomfortably.