Dalia serves our food on trays so I don't have to lean forward. In addition to retrieving a sweater, I also brought out a blanket. Henry had offered to light the fireplace, but I declined.
I take a small sip of white wine and place the glass back down. "What were you talking to Marcel about?"
He begins cutting into the steak on his plate and doesn't look at me as he says, "Just some personal food requests. My mother said that we should begin telling Marcel as soon as possible so he can better perform his job."
I've already told him my food preferences during our first meeting. What more is there for me to say? "I'll talk to him tomorrow." Though I'm pretty certain it will involve him talking more than me.
Henry nods and presses a few buttons to pull up Swan Lake. Once the projector displays the curtains opening, we sit back, shoulder to shoulder. It's nowhere near as good as a live performance, but it's still much better than the obsolete 4D of the early-21st century. When the prince first meets Odette, I feel Henry wrap his arm around my waist and feel heat spread through my body.
By the end of the footage, Henry had pulled my legs across his lap and the blanket is draped over both of us. The projector turns off and the lights turn back on. I start to move my legs, but he places a hand on me and I stop.
"What are you doing?" I ask.
"Don't want you to leave yet."
I don't understand him. "I'd only be going to bed."
"Exactly. On opposite sides," he clarifies when I don't answer. "Unless you've changed your mind?"
I shake my head. "Not yet, but maybe soon?"
"Really?" he doesn't conceal the shock in his voice.
"I like you, Henry. I'm just still adjusting to everything."
He nods and slips a hand around my back and the other under my legs. Before I can react, he has me lifted in the air and is walking us into our room.
I glance around and don't see any of our staff around, but I still blush. "You can put me down. I do have two working legs."
"In a moment." He places me on the bed and then disappears into the bathroom.
I think about Henry's behavior today. He had been acting much warmer than he had initially, but this seemed too affectionate. I smile. Who would have thought I would be complaining about my Match being too attentive?
"At least you're happy," he says.
I look up and see him leaning against the dresser. I bite my lip, trying to tame my crazy urge to smile. "I didn't realize you were done."
"Doesn't take that long for us men to get ready."
I take my turn in the bathroom. When I'm done, I sit on my side of the bed and swing my legs under the covers and lie down. I feel the bed move under his weight, but don't turn around.
"You're awfully quiet. What are you thinking about, Rosemary?"
"I prefer Romy." I say it quietly, without any malice, but I have no idea why I say it. The words are out of my mouth before I can imagine my mother pursing her lips in disapproval.
He repeats my nickname, trying it out, and I can hear the question in his voice.
"It was my sister's nickname for me," I explain. Maybe he'll understand my need to use it now more than ever. "My mom really hated when we used it though."
YOU ARE READING
The MatchmakersScience Fiction
Science. Love. Power. Love is a science in the 23rd Century. The Matchmakers rule The Heartland, where arranged marriages are routine and Rosemary can't wait until she meets her Match on her eighteenth birthday. When her rebellious sister is tied to...