Unassembled shelves, planks, and screws fan out across the floor, surrounding the two. Sonnett’s tongue pokes out of the corner of her mouth in concentration as she hunches over the assembly instructions. Amused, Lindsey watches her look back and forth between the illustrations and the pieces.
“So an expert, huh?"
Sonnett looks up at Lindsey, bashfully. “I’m mostly just good at the screwing part.” She immediately turns red, realizing what she said.
Lindsey barks out a laugh. “Yeah, I bet.”
Cheeks turning red, Sonnett shoves the instructions at Lindsey, the sound of the fluttering pages drowned out by Lindsey’s laugh. “Just tell me what to do.”
“Gladly,” Lindsey says, winking as Sonnett groans and covers her face with her hands.
Almost an hour later, they had fallen into a quiet rhythm of Lindsey relaying the instructions and Sonnett… well, screwing. At one point, while she was working on a particularly stubborn screw that did not want to go in straight, she glances up at Lindsey, catching the other girl biting her lip, looking lost in thought as she watches her hands work.
Realizing she’s been caught, a slight blush rises on Lindsey’s cheeks, but Sonnett just smiles softly. She is surprised to find Lindsey’s returning smile shy, instead of flirtatious or teasing.
With that last stubborn screw snug in place, Sonnett leans back, tossing down the screwdriver and shaking out her hand.
“Hand okay?” Lindsey asks, gesturing towards her hand.
“It’s fine, just a little sore.”
“Let me see.”
Lindsey encloses Sonnett’s hand into her own, gently pulling her closer and opening her palm to investigate. There’s a pink splotch running across her palm from the pressure of the screwdriver. Being careful of the sensitive skin, Lindsey lightly runs her fingertips across Sonnett’s palm.
“Gonna kiss it better?” Sonnett jokes. Holding eye contact, Lindsey slowly brings their hands up to her lips until Sonnett can feel a hint of warm breath on the sensitive skin of her sore palm. She gulps as she feels the lightest press of soft lips… Right as the front door swings open with a bang and Rose strolls in, juggling two iced coffees.
“Is this some weird foreplay?” Rose asks in a casual tone, pausing in the doorway to take in the scene before her.
Startled, Sonnett starts to jerk her hand back, right as Lindsey is turning her face, smacking her right in the eye.
Rose just laughs as Sonnett freaks out, apologizing and fussing over a cursing Lindsey.
About an hour later, Lindsey and Sonnett stand shoulder to shoulder, admiring the completed bookshelf in its new home. Claiming injury, Lindsey had made the other two collect all her books and knick knacks and arrange them on the shelf.
“It looks good.” Sonnet offered.
Lindsey attempting to appear serious as she inspects the shelves is somewhat spoiled by the iced coffee she holds to her face to ice the bruise.
“Remind me again why you don’t have any ice packs around?”
Lindsey shushes her, bringing the iced coffee down to take a sip before returning it to her brow. “It’s missing something.”
Sonnett turns back to the shelves, thinking.
“Ah! I got it.” She spins, heading to the kitchen counter where she left the cactus she bought at IKEA earlier that night. She picks up the cactus, puts in on an empty space on the shelf, and rejoins Lindsey.
As they stand and admire their finished project, Lindsey stifles a yawn.
Checking the time, Sonnett curses. “Sorry, I didn’t mean to stay so late.” Her expression turns sheepish when she remembers that Lindsey drove them here.
“Do you want to stay? …Maybe?”
Sonnett waggles her eyebrows. “Overnight? On the first date? I see you Miss Horan.”
“I- I can sleep on the couch, it’s just late! And the IKEA parking garage is probably closed!” Lindsey rambles, attempting to defend herself.
Sonnett just laughs as Lindsey realizes that she’s just working her up. “Shut up!”
Drying off her face, Lindsey pulls the towel down at the sound of Sonnett entering the bathroom wearing the t-shirt and shorts she gave her to sleep in. The soft cotton shirt, a little big on the other girl’s slightly smaller frame, hangs down to about mid thigh, only showing a small sliver of the shorts underneath. Sonnett follows her gaze down to her legs.
“It’s a little big but they’ll work.” She pulls the hem of her shirt up to reveal the Nike shorts slung low, her hip bones jutting out from the loose waistband. Lindsey gulps at the glimpse of abs right as Sonnett lowers her shirt back down and picks up a borrowed toothbrush.
“Eyes up here.” Sonnett says with a smirk, squeezing toothpaste on the brush and beginning to brush her teeth.
Lindsey blushes, but then straightens, narrowing her eyes at the other girl. Two can play at that game.
In one smooth move, she whips her sweater off, revealing nothing but a navy sports bra underneath. Sonnett chokes, spitting toothpaste all over the mirror.
“I like to sleep without a shirt on. Hope that’s not a problem.” Lindsey says with fake innocence. She turns, strutting out of the bathroom as Sonnett watches her, toothbrush hanging lopsided from her mouth.
Lindsey is laying on the left side of her double bed, back propped up pillows when Sonnett appears in the doorway after finishing in the bathroom. She pauses just inside the room, grinning at Lindsey.
“You coming or not?”
“Think I’m gonna test out the mattress first.” Sonnett replies, her grin turning mischievous.
“Wait what--” Lindsey starts, right as Sonnett takes off running towards the bed. Lindsey yelps as she remembers the other girl’s preferred mattress testing technique from their IKEA date earlier that day.
Launching herself onto the bed, Sonnett bounces more than she anticipated and flails to catch her balance, with an elbow straight to Lindsey’s ribs.
“Oh shit!” Realizing what happened, Sonnett rolls so she’s facing a wincing Lindsey and props herself up on an elbow. “Are you okay?”
Lindsey laughs lightly. “I’ll survive. Might have a bruise though.”
Sonnett frowns and gently places her free hand on the growing red spot on Lindsey’s ribs, just a few inches below the band of her sports bra. “I can get some ice?”
“It’s fine, I promise.” Lindsey says with a soft smile.
They share a moment of comfortable silence, smiling at one another. Lindsey feels the warmth from the other girl’s hand seep into her skin, soothing what remains of the dull pain on her ribs. Then, she catches Sonnett’s eyes flitting down to her lips. Seizing the chance, she slowly leans in, Sonnett meeting her in the middle for a soft kiss. Letting out the smallest sigh, Lindsey goes in for a little more pressure.
Suddenly, a loud synth followed by a let’s go girls! comes from the other side of the wall, startling them apart. Bewildered, Sonnett looks back towards Lindsey as the intro to Shania Twain’s “Man! I Feel Like a Woman” blasts from the next room. “Don’t tell me…”
“Rose’s room is right next door.”
As Lindsey's answer settles, smiles creep upon both of their faces until giggles burst from both of them. The giggles quickly grow into uncontrollable laughter, the way it often does when you combine the giddiness of a good kiss and the ridiculousness of a ridiculous situation. Lindsey snorts, surprising both of them until they start laughing even harder.
As they come down from their high, Sonnett buries her face into Lindsey’s shoulder, who’s busy wiping the tears off her face. When she raises her face towards Lindsey, Lindsey jokes “maybe this can be our song.” Sonnett lets out a chuckle before Lindsey pulls her in for another kiss.
They lay there together, kissing to the tune of Shania Twain until sleep takes over.
Years later, at their wedding, Rose would claim during her maid of honor speech (which comprised mostly of recounting how they met in every excruciatingly awkward and embarrassing detail) that she genuinely thought Shania Twain was a good choice for mood music for them and she was just trying to help out. The volume, she said, was so she wouldn’t have to hear any of the results that her mood music may have. Rose danced the hardest when it came on during the wedding reception.