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When She Sang

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To most of the people who asked, when she could be as crude as she wished (so, mainly to Tony when he showed up to bug them about something) Nicolette would say that she was most in love with Frankie when they were in bed together, nothing between them but the tangled sheets. She would answer that her favorite sound was the shuddering gasp she drew from Frankie’s lips night after night, followed right after by the shaky laugh that her girlfriend could never keep in, their nocturnal activities making her giddy even as they exhausted her. She would claim that her favorite meal could be found between Frankie’s legs, and her favorite place to be was the same.

Partly she did this to tease Frankie- not much flustered her after everything that had happened, but this never failed to draw a faint blush to those cheeks. Partly she did it to get a rise out of the others- Tony would scrunch up his face and mutter about how he’d been good about waitin’ till marriage, Heather would laugh this deep, wild laugh at Frankie’s face, and the other members of the band would just roll their eyes and order another round of drinks.

When she had to be polite, such as when Ceasar and Frankie’s folks came around for dinner, she said she was most in love in the kitchen. In their down time, when they both had six or seven hours to do nothing, they had started spending it cooking. Frankie had a descent hold on the stereotypical meals- her lasagna was almost perfect (even if the corners were still too dry), she could make an excellent stuffed mushroom, and her cannoli was delicious (she could cook a good one too). But she was shit at making cappeletti, just like she was shit at making a lot of the other lesser-known recipes, and Nicolette had taken it upon herself to educate her poor love.

Though she only volunteered after Frankie almost set the kitchen on fire. Her reading of Italian wasn’t nearly as good as her speech, and while she wasn’t stupid, she often took too much stock in the badly handwritten recipe cards Nicolette kept around the house. Cards that she badly misread and thus butchered.

Though it wasn’t that bad in the kitchen. When dessert cream inevitably ended up on Frankie’s cheek or her chin, she was in the perfect place to kiss it off. Flour fights left a ghostly sheen on her skin, and almost guaranteed a double shower. And, when something came out right, there was almost nothing cuter then that excited little gleam in her eyes, a gleam Nicolette loved seeing.

So the kitchen wasn’t half bad, and a good answer whenever the parents were around. Not too crude, pleased them that they were spending so much time around food (Like good Italians), and it was normal. Something they could all bond over, especially after the awkwardness of their first family meal.

But to herself, and only to herself, Nicolette would say she was most in love with Frankie when she sang.

Mostly because it was too much cheese for even her Italian stomach to handle, and partly because it was true. It had been her voice she had first noticed, after all, so it only made sense.

Plus, whenever Frankie sang, she just knew.

When she sang in the shower, the off key tones vibrating perfectly off the walls to create a beautiful mess she got to lie in bed and listen to as Frankie washed the sweat and smoke from the latest gig off her skin. When she sang when she cooked, humming in time to the slight rhythmic beat of the knife cutting. When she sang in bed, her voice low and tired, the words half mumbled and forgotten as sleep tried to take her.

When Frankie stood on the stage and sang in front of thousands of people, her eyes wild and terrified but her voice steady, the band playing perfectly the song Mod Hit had helped make big behind her.

Whenever she was singing, whether it was a gentle croon in her ear or out to the screaming fans, Nicolette knew Frankie was singing to her. Knew that, even when she wasn’t there, Frankie was searching out for her to give her that smile, that simple, pure smile that had captured her heart when she first stopped to listen to her sing.

And Nicky loved her all the more for it.