"You haven't stopped growling since we got here," Lana commented, before taking a sip from her champagne glass.
"I'm not growling."
"You're doing a good impression of it."
Pete frowned and stabbed his peas with a vengeance. Of course, the peas didn't take well to being stabbed, and one attempted a daring leap off his plate and onto Lana's. She gave her husband a look.
"Lex was just trying to be nice," she reminded him.
"I know. It's just..."
"He's always being nice!" God, could he sound any more pathetic?
"He's trying to be a good friend."
Pete fumed more. That was just another problem with Lex, as far as Pete was concerned. He did things that were intended to be gestures of friendship, but they also rubbed Pete the wrong way. But because Lex always had his heart in the right place, as Lana liked to remind him, Pete just felt even more guilty about being irritated. Like tonight, Lex had arranged a romantic dinner for the two of them at La Maison, the nicest French restaurant in town, for Lana's birthday. It was a wonderful gift. It was also way more than Pete could have afforded to give Lana.
"If you don't like the restaurant, we can go." Lana twisted her napkin in her hand.
Pete looked up at her, and immediately felt bad. It was her birthday after all, and he wasn't letting her enjoy it because he was feeling insecure.
"I like the restaurant. I just wish I could have afforded to--"
Lana rolled her eyes. "Don't do that. You know that doesn't matter to me."
"I know. I just want to treat you like a princess."
Lana reached forward and squeezed his hand. "You know, I *was* treated like a princess all my life. You're the first person to treat me like a partner, someone you can trust to go through life with you. Do you have any idea what that means to me?"
"You're my best friend, Pete. And what makes my birthday special is having you with me, not where we eat."
Pete sighed, and rose slightly to brush his lips against his wife's. "Thank you for reminding me about what's important."
"Thank you for giving me everything important in my life." She smiled, and Pete suddenly found himself remembering the multitudes of reasons he loved her in the first place. "Now, are we okay to eat?"
"We certainly are. In fact, I think we should order another bottle of wine. And definitely dessert. After all, Lex is paying."
"What? I'm just letting him be a good friend."
"And you're incredible." Pete grinned. "Happy birthday, baby!"