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Futile Devices

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The sun is blaring masterfully down on the patio behind Elliot’s apartment. The comparison between how it is now, versus just a year ago, when snow covered and drowned out the stoned pavement there is vast in difference. It’s been a hot summer so far, made up of nostalgia from what came only a year before. 

 

Much has changed since then. The snow has been long gone. The air now mirrored Lombardy, though that place, if not an illusion or thing of the past, rests on the other side of the ocean – far, far away. Perhaps tucked deep into the memory of what would be their beginning. 

 

Elliot sits in one of the patio chairs, with his leg drawn up sideways over the other. His foot shakes as he stares up with squinted eyes past the leaves of a tree, which show only slight hints of the sun, though they are bright enough to make him want to shield his eyes. His attention, however, is brought from that when he hears Olivia slide the door open to the patio and make her way out with a tray of lemonade. A small pitcher, with two glasses – sliced lemons on either side of them both. Ice filled halfway up the glasses, which are already making them sweat.

 

“What time do you have to leave for the advocacy center?” Elliot asks, watching her sit the lemonade tray down on the small wrought iron table before him. It barely fits. Elliot reaches forward and takes one of the glasses into his hands. It’s small in comparison to his fingers, which wrap around it with ease. “Thank you.” He smiles, bringing it up to his stubbled face. 

 

“Around 1 o’clock.” Olivia replies, and rather than sitting in the chair opposite of Elliot, she slides onto Elliot’s lap swiftly and wraps an arm around his neck. Playfully, she reaches for his lemonade glass and takes a sip and of course, Elliot hands it right over. 

 

Thief.” Elliot smirks. 

 

“You started it.” Olivia corners brown eyes down at him, taking another sip from his glass before passing it back to him. Elliot takes the glass from her and takes another drink. Only then does Olivia reach for her own glass and take another couple sips. 

 

Elliot’s hand rests firm on the side of her hip, blue eyes looking up at her. “Dante said we should be getting the transcript soon. Are you nervous about it?” He asks. 

 

“Mmm … I don’t know. I know what I told him but I have to admit,” Olivia laughs. “I’m a little nervous as to what you told him.” She teases, her fingers tracing circles on the back of his neck. 

 

“What do you mean? I didn’t overshare.” Elliot chuckles, sitting his glass down. His hand comes to rest on her thigh, almost to keep her positioned on his lap. 

 

Sure.” Olivia grins. 

 

“I didn’t!” Elliot insists, a huge grin plastered on his lips. “Maybe he just … filled in the blanks.” He shrugs. 

 

“Mhm, or you filled them in for him.” Olivia smirks, sitting her glass down and wrapping her other arm around him. Her fingers lace together to keep them positioned over his shoulders. She looks down at him with adoration. 

 

“I did no such thing.” Elliot gazes up at her with the same expression. 

 

Mmmm …” Olivia sings, giving a single nod. 

 

Mmmmmm …” Elliot nods back, mimicking her. He looks down at his watch. “We still have another couple hours before Eli gets home.” Elliot grins. 

 

“Oh? Great! You can do the dishes then.” Olivia smiles comically down at him. 

 

“Dishes can wait.” Elliot scoots forward with her still on his lap. 

 

Oh no.” Olivia giggles, figuring he’s trying to pick her up but she slings one of her legs off his lap and braces her foot against the patio to stop them. 

 

“I got this.” Elliot insists. 

 

“I’ll walk, thank you.” Olivia states, wiggling her way off his lap and standing to her feet. She begins sauntering back towards the patio doors, but turns around to look at him. “You coming? To do dishes of course.” 

 

Elliot stands to his feet. “Eli can do the dishes.” He jokes. 

“Nope. Your turn.” Olivia teases, but is already working on the buttons of her blouse. 

 

Elliot cocks an eyebrow. 

 

“Is this a trick?” He asks.

 

“What?” Olivia cocks her head, pretending as if she doesn’t know what trick he’s talking about as she continues working her way further into the apartment. 

 

Elliot rolls his eyes and follows her inside. 



—--



Soft breaths pass between their lips, back and forth. Hot and raspy as they roll around in their bed with one another. Heels on the back of legs dig in with each thrust; Nails rack at skin in silent, passionate outcries. His fingers are tangled in her hair, and at one point, she comes up to bring it from her thick locks so she can lace her fingers in with his as they move with one another. 

 

The moment his mouth comes to her ear and he begins whispering the things she likes to hear, he can feel her begin to shake and tense against him, hips rolling against hips as she does. The dampness between them is prominent, and both know, as usual, the linen will have to be changed when they’re done. 

 

In the heights of what they give to one another, which is blistering compared to the heat outside, they both moan and cry against the skin of each other. Against lips, with pressed foreheads and opened mouths. Whimpers and groans fade into soft laughter in between kisses, and exchanged I love yous. 

 

After that, Olivia stands at the foot of the bed after just coming out of the shower. A towel is wrapped around her body as she brushes her hair, and a satisfied smirk rests on her plump lips as she looks down at Elliot, who is grinning like an absolute idiot at her. He lies in bed, propped up on his elbow – quietly observing her. 

 

“When do you think you’ll be home?” Elliot asks. 

“Phoebe and I are going to the mall to pick up a birthday gift for Fin after we’re done at the center. But after that I’ll be back.” Olivia says, walking over to the dresser and placing her brush down. “What do you want for dinner?” She asks, brushing her fingers through the ends of her long hair. 

 

“I can cook. Pasta?” Elliot asks, tugging at the sheet that covers his hips. 

 

“That sounds nice.” Olivia smiles, looking through the reflection of the mirror at him. She watches as he crawls out of bed and makes his way towards her, in quite literally, nothing. 

 

“I just showered, you’re going to get your man stink all over me.” Olivia teases, reaching for her perfume. Elliot wraps both arms around her hips and draws her to him, and regardless of her earlier protest, she leans against him. They begin teetering back and forth against one another. 

 

Ragu?” Elliot whispers against her ears, eyes locked on hers through the mirror. 

 

“On second thought, how about BBQ?” Olivia giggles.

 

“You don’t like my pasta with the ragu?” Elliot teases, trying to sound overly fanciful. 

 

Mmm … kebab, please.” Olivia closes her eyes.

 

“Anything you want.” Elliot kisses her neck. 

 

That’s right.” Olivia sings, her hand coming to rest over Elliot’s, which rests over her stomach. “Remind me to check on our order later tonight. I haven’t gotten an email on it yet, so I’m worried it won’t be here in time.” She adds.

 

“Kathleen’s gift?” Elliot asks, leaning down to kiss her bare shoulder. 

 

“Mhm. It’d be a shame if it came after the wedding.” Olivia states, swaying with him. Their eyes are still locked on one another through the mirror. 

 

“It’ll be here in time.”

 

“Are you ready to give your little girl away?” Olivia asks with a soft laugh. 

 

“Never. But I think she’s in good hands. Austin is a good guy I think.” Elliot replies, blue eyes peering at her through the mirror. 

 

“I think so too.” She replies quietly. 

 

Silence. Their gaze is still fixated on one another. 

 

“When are you gonna let me marry you?” Elliot asks, a sly grin fusing on his lips. 

 

Olivia’s smile, not once, fades away. She simply tilts her head and gives him an all-knowing little smirk before pulling away from him. 

 

“Anytime, my friend. Anytime.” Olivia walks backwards towards the door. 

 

“Right now?” Elliot teases. 

 

“Not right now.” Olivia sings. 

 

“When?”

 

Later.” She sends him one final smile and turns the corner. 





. . . . . . . . 



The next morning rolls around quietly. The birds sing, as they do, and awaken her with an ease that she’s grown accustomed to. There’s no tree branch swinging outside her window, with birds perched and in choir. They’re distant and feel like some kind of dream-like echo, far away from her and Elliot’s apartment. 

 

Olivia has grown accustomed to knowing when Elliot isn’t beside her. When perhaps he’s woken before her and is off doing what he does in the morning. Making breakfast, which no doubt, she’ll be greeted with a plate and a kiss. He’s probably already done his workout. Probably already fed their bird –  a little lime green and yellow budgie they’ve taken to calling Kiwi. 

 

Olivia makes her way into the main area of the apartment, with a billowy silk robe wrapped around her. Black, and tied tight around the waist. Sure enough, as she approaches the kitchen she sees Elliot sitting there waiting for her. He doesn’t realize she’s there yet, because he’s going back and forth with Kiwi. Little “ Whew, whew, whews …” fill the air between the caged bird and Elliot, who is grinning over at the tiny animal that bounces around on his perch excitedly. As Olivia enters further into the kitchen, her eyes catch on the photo of them by the pool on the fridge, next to another one of her – reaching and touching lemons. Elliot took them of course, what seems like ages ago. 

 

“Morning, Kiwi.” Olivia announces her presence, which causes Elliot to look over his shoulder at her. A smile falls on his lips, causing his eyes to narrow and crease on the outer corners. 

 

Elliot looks to Kiwi, who sits in his cage not far, close to the patio doors. 

 

“Morning, Liv.” Elliot says to the bird.

 

“Morning, Liv!” Kiwi repeats, loudly – with excitement. 

 

Olivia giggles and wraps her arms around Elliot from behind. She reaches over his shoulder and grabs a half cut piece of toast, where she takes a bite from it. 

 

I made you a plate.” Elliot grins, “You’re a thief.” 

 

“You started it.” Olivia’s mouth is full. 

 

“Dante’s envelope came.” Elliot says suddenly. 

 

“Where is it?” Olivia perks up. 

 

Elliot reaches forward and removes a newspaper from the stack of white paper. 

 

“You haven’t read any yet have you?” Olivia asks, placing a single kiss on the side of Elliot’s neck before scooting onto the barstool beside him. 

 

“I waited on you.” Elliot says. “For the most part.” His grin grows. 

 

Elliot!” Olivia whines. 

 

“I just read the first paragraph. Want me to read it to you?” Elliot asks. 

 

Olivia nods, reaching for the glass of orange juice beside her plate. 

 

Just as Elliot reaches for the transcript, Eli’s bedroom door opens and he comes out, fully dressed. He stops and looks back and forth at Olivia and Elliot, who are staring at him. 

 

“I’m getting breakfast with Ally.” Eli says, looking back and forth between the two. 

 

“Okay. That’s fine. Do you need some money?” Olivia asks, standing to her feet. She’s already in search for her purse. 

 

“I have some.” Eli shrugs, but stands still. He definitely wants money. 

 

Olivia finds her purse and digs through for her wallet. She brings it out and pulls some cash from it, flipping the bills in half and extending it out to him. Eli saunters over and takes it from her. 

 

“Thank you.” Eli says. 

 

“Have fun.” Olivia smiles. 

 

“Love you both. Be back later.” Eli salutes them playfully and jogs over to the door. 

 

“For dinner?” Elliot asks. 

 

“Probably.” Eli states, and before another word can be exchanged between the three – the door is opened and shut and Eli is gone. 

 

Probably.” Elliot mimics. 

 

“He’s growing up.” Olivia slides back onto the barstool. 

 

“Too fast.” Elliot replies. 

 

Kiwi makes his little noises in the background. 

 

“Such is life.” Olivia says, eyeballing the transcript. She leans forward and reaches for Elliot’s hand. She brings her other to a propping motion so her chin can rest on her fist. 

 

Elliot turns his attention back to the transcript and picks it up. He places it in front of her. “You read.” he laughs. “It’s more so your story, isn’t it?” Elliot asks. 

 

“It’s our story. Not getting all timid are we?” Olivia asks, raising an eyebrow. 

 

“I’m ready for whatever is in there.” Elliot replies. 

 

Mmmm … I bet.” Olivia laughs. She reaches for her black framed glasses and slides them onto her face. They rest on the bulb of her nose. Her hand is still in Elliot’s, and she uses her other hand to push her breakfast plate back just a bit before running her hand over the first page of the transcript. 

 

“Futile Devices …” Olivia reads from the front. “Dante Rossi … A novel.” 

 

Elliot smiles, tilting his head as she begins. 

 

Olivia flips the cover page, and it’s blank besides a small sentence in the center. 

 

“For Liv & El …” Olivia reads. 

 

“May you continue to burn as warm as the Lombardy sun , my friends.”