“Goal!” Thiago’s scream can be heard from the living room and it distracts Leo who is currently making lunch. He doesn’t know what match is his son watching, probably some La Liga match.
“Papiiiii!” now he’s completely distracted. He can hear Thiago running across the hallway towards the kitchen.
“Thiago, no running in the—”
“Cris scored, Papi! It’s his first goal in Juventus!” The 6 years old cuts Leo midsentence. Thiago is wearing a Juventus’7 jersey Cris not-so-secretly gave the boy at the airport when they were sending Cris and Junior off.
Leo can feel smile automatically appears on his face. He abandons the onion he’s currently cutting and takes off his apron.
“Thiago, let’s pack up your things, we’re going to Turin,” Leo says as he lifts his son up. “This needs to be celebrated!”
“Yay! Are we going to have chocolate cake too?”
“Yes, let’s go.”
Lunch can wait, so is training and the up-coming La Liga match (he checked, and there will be none until 2 more days).
Cris can still feel the euphoria in him as he is driving his way home.
Apparently it was his new team’s tradition to celebrate somebody’s first goal as one of the Bianconeri. So they held a small party in the club’s lounge area, there were champagnes, billiards, and music. Some were trying to keep it kid-friendly, but there are still younger players that decided to get drunk.
But Cris decided not to get drunk because first, he is driving. But second, because he wanted to get home and call Leo as soon as possible.
Junior is on the passenger seat, giggling about something Cris doesn’t know what in his iPad.
‘Kids,’ he thinks.
He arrives home as the digital clock on his dashboard shows a bright ’07:15pm’, it’s not late enough to call Leo.
“Junior, go take a bath and let’s call Leo,” Cris says as he parks his car on the driveway.
“No, I don’t want to call Leo,” Junior says as he shakes his head with a smile.
Cris raises his eyebrow, now that is weird. “Oh? And why is that?”
“No reason. C’mon, Pai, let’s go,” Junior replies as he gets out of the car and rushes towards the front door.
Cris unlocks the door in confusion.
Junior runs directly to the dining room across the hallway once Cris opened the door.
He puts his duffel bag in the front way then follows his son’s steps towards the dining area. As he got closer, he can hear hushed voices from the said room. Cris slowed his steps down, to listen more clearly but the voices stop just like that.
Cris slowly peeks his head inside the dining room, and then—
“Surprise!” Junior and two other person yell when they see Cris’ head peeking from the doorway. Two other person—Leo and Little Thiago.
Cris can feel his heart melts at the sight in front of him. Thiago throws himself for Cris to catch and Junior runs up to him to hug his waist. “Surprise, Papa,” the boy shows him a toothy smile.
This is why Junior spent his time looking at his iPad ever since they were in the party with the Juve team.
Cris feels like crying, not knowing what he’d done to deserve all this beautiful people in his life.
“Don’t you start crying, crybaby,” Leo says with a huge smile as he approaches Cris. He stands on his tiptoe to kiss the taller Portuguese before him. It’s a quick peck, simple way to deliver the unspoken ‘I miss you’.
“Eww,” Thiago and Junior say in unison as they’re still clinging so close to Cris.
Leo pulls back with an amused smile and Cris is laughing.
Junior decides to let Cris go and turns to hug Leo while Thiago still content in Cris’ arms. Leo remembers Thiago once told him he likes it when it was Cris lifting him up, the boy felt taller. Cris laughed so hard when he heard it.
“Leo, can we eat the chocolate cake now?” Junior asks.
“No dessert before dinner, okay? Let’s eat first,” Leo replies while leading the 8 years old towards the dining table full with various of Italian food.
The boys are playing FIFA while Cris and Leo putting away the leftovers and the dishes away.
“I still can’t believe you’re here, Leo, it’s the middle of season,” Cris says as they’re done with the dishes.
“Well, I’m here,” Leo replies simply. Cris smiles and takes Leo into his embrace.
“Have I told you how much I love you?”
“Today? No, not yet,” Leo replies with a teasing smile.
“I love you, then,” Cris replies as he lets go. “But seriously, Leo. You didn’t have to come all the way here. You still have practices and upcoming matches,”
“You scored your first goal in Juventus. That needs to be celebrated!” Leo says as if it was the obvious.
“But that goal was,” Cris stops, finding the right word. “It was only a tap-in. It’s nothing special, Leo,” he continues with a small voice.
“It is special, Cris. Everything that comes from you is special, at least to me, to Thiago and Junior. Thiago almost knocked a vase over when he ran towards the kitchen, screaming ‘goal’ on top of his lungs,” Leo replies with an uncontainable chuckle.
Cris feels his eyes getting warm. It is true, he’s happy, but there is still dissatisfaction in him. Some media said his goal is an easy goal, a ridiculous tap-in and he was just lucky.
“I swear if it’s all the media’s bullshit, I’ll hug you until you can’t breathe,” Leo says as if the Argentine can read his mind. Cris chuckled at that.
“You’ll miss your handsome boyfriend if you do that,” Cris smugly replies.
Leo only laughed and hugs Cris’ waist, resting his head on the Portuguese’s neck.
“And hey. It wasn’t only one first goal but two. Your goals were the team’s winning goal, Ronaldo,”
“Yeah, I know. Greatest of all time, remember?”
Leo pinches Cris’ side. “You’re lucky I love you,”
“I am, Messi. I am the luckiest.”