"They're coming," Leslie breathlessly announces while dropping the pesto sauce on top of the counter.
"Breathe, please." Emma chuckles at her friend and keeps her eyes on the pan. "Why didn't you wait for them?"
"Because my shirt is freaking stained with blueberries!" Leslie screams from the bedroom. "How about this one?" She walks back in the living room/kitchen area.
Emma sucks on her index finger, tasting the sauce. "Hm, that's nice-" her beeping phone got her attention. "They're downstairs."
"On my way!" Leslie smiles and runs her hands through her hair while walking out the door again.
On the other hand, Emma is trying her best to finish the pasta in time. Five minutes pass by and she hears voices in the hallway.
"So this is our apartment," Leslie's voice grows louder by the second which means she's closer and so are they.
"Hey there, master chef," Sebastian is the first one to greet her.
"Hey!" She takes her eyes off the stewpot for a moment to look at him and his friend. "Oh," she grins, recognizing the man next to Seb.
"It's Chace!" Leslie is standing behind Chace Crawford and raises her eyebrows up and down, making Emma laugh. "Chace Crawford."
"I can see that," smirking, she turns off the cooker and cleans her hands on the purple kitchen cloth. "How are you?" Emma sticks out her hand to him.
"I'm fine, Emma. It's nice to meet you!" The man responds friendly and looks around. "Your place is lovely."
Emma thinks so too. When she first came to San Francisco in 2013 she started hunting for an apartment and that drove her desperate. After a week in college, she met Leslie and thankfully she was looking for a roommate, even though Les was graduating that year.
The second she laid her feet in this place she knew it was the one - cute, small yet spacious enough for both of them to live comfortably. The walls are all white but filled with some posters here and there, the living room and the kitchen are connected, and there's a huge balcony with a nice view of the bridge.
There's only one bedroom though, but Emma managed to buy an extra bed that could fit in there and they make it work! The entire building is filled with university students, so being close to her other friends is also a positive thing. Living with Leslie is, for sure, one of the best things that ever happened to her.
"Oh, that's a beautiful view!" Sebastian approaches the huge glass door. "Driving on that bridge is insane, by the way."
"The traffic, right?" Emma asks and starts putting the pasta on each plate. "It is mad. New York is worse though, don't you think?"
"I think it's the same," he lays his eyes on their bookshelf.
"You just don't like bridges, isn't it?" Emma fails to hide the mocking tone in her voice.
"Bridges don't like me." Sebastian runs his fingers on the books as he walks to the table.
"There are about 10 bridges in NYC and he refuses to drive on each one of them," Chace adds.
"Vertigo, man. I can't help it." Sebastian laughs at his fear of driving on places where he can't see the solid ground all around him.
Chace sits down with Leslie and Emma goes back to the kitchen to grab the wine. "Let me help you," Sebastian offers his skills when he notices that she's struggling to open the bottle. After rotating the corkscrew a few times he pulls it up and it pops open. "There," his breathing reaches her cheek and makes a short chill run down on her arm.
Finally sitting down, Seb notices that Leslie and Chace are way too chatty for two people who just met. "So," he starts. "You guys know each other?"
"Yes!" Leslie replies as excitement takes over her. "One of the first interviews I ever did was with him!" She grins.
"Oh, I remember!" Emma happily comments.
"Me too," Chace joins in. "Especially when she fell in front of me."
"Shhhh," Leslie blushes. "That was supposed to be a secret!"
"Leslie, it was classic-" Emma tries hard to contain the laughter.
"I was so embarrassed! My feet tricked me, okay?" Les tries to justify. "Let's just forget about it."
"Let's not, please." Chace laughs.
"Let'schangethesubject and bon appétit." Leslie says in a desperate rush to talk about something else.
"This was delicious," Sebastian says as he presses his hands on his stomach.
"Told you," Leslie winks. "She has been feeding me for three years now and she still surprises me, every day."
"Aw, I'm sure that's the wine talking." Emma chuckles and starts cleaning up the table.
"Half wine, half heart." Les gets up, with her glass, and follows Chace to the couch.
"You can keep your glass too, I'm just going to take all of this to the sink." Ems makes her way to the kitchen and Seb insists on helping her out.
"So, what are you doing next?" She hears Chace and Leslie chatting back there and she can't help but smile.
"You play the piano?" Sebastian questions, putting his empty glass down.
"Yeah. I mean, I played a lot more when I was younger but I still know some tunes." Emma puts the last plate in the sink and directs her gaze to the piano near the couch. "It was my granddad's."
"Can I hear it?" Sebastian straightens up his body.
"Oh, I don't know-"
"Yes, you can, Stan!" Leslie shouts, making everyone laugh. After the longest eye roll, Emma walks to the piano and sits down.
"Okay," she fiddles her fingers on the keyboard and starts playing.
"Ohhh," Chace stands up and places his elbows on the piano, taking another sip of wine.
"Sinatra?" Sebastian asks and smiles amusingly.
"Heck yeah." Emma laughs and after they know it she starts singing.
"I know I stand in line until you think you have the time
To spend an evening with me
And if we go some place to dance, I know that there's a chance
You won't be leaving with me
Then afterwards we drop into a quiet little place
And have a drink or two
And then I go and spoil it all by saying something stupid
Like "I love you"
An hour passes by like lightning - everyone had such a great time and all of them felt like they hadn't laughed this much is such a long time. Her voice broke down slowly and Emma stops playing. "Oh, man. It's late," she stands up and they back away from the instrument as well. "I really enjoyed tonight, though. Especially your musical talent, Chace."
"Me too," Sebastian laughs, Chace ignores the irony and gives his positive thoughts on the evening as well.
"I'll walk you out," Leslie volunteers.
"Bye," Emma hesitates for a bit but decides to put a soft kiss on Sebastian's cheek as they hug.
"I hope to see you soon," Seb says gently near her ear and kisses her warm cheek too.
"You better go now before you get harassed. It's almost 1 am and the parties in here are about to start," Leslie laughs, making sure there's no one standing outside. "This building is packed with 20-year-olds, shit gets crazy."
The boys step out the door. "Goodnight, Leslie!" Chace waves goodbye and so does Seb. "Wait," Chace runs back to the apartment before Leslie could close the door. "I want your number."
"Hmmm, no?" She crosses her arms. "I want your number."