Then: "You can be the daddy", she says thrusting her dolly into his open arms. "Okay", he replies amicably. He rocks the dolly and looks up at her. "Now what?"
"I cook supper." "Do we kiss?" "Ew Levi, no!" She says, giggling. "You have to give baby a bath, then we read her a story and she goes to bed."
"THEN do we kiss?" "No!" He looks up at her grumpily. "Mommies and daddies kiss ALL the time."
"They do not!" "Do too!" "What on earth are you two arguing about?" Her mom walks into the kitchen, looking from one to the other with kind, amused eyes.
"Levi wants to kiss me!" Chuckling, she ushers the two out of the kitchen. "Honestly you two, go outside you're giving me a headache."
"I do NOT want to kiss you!" He sidemouths at her while heading for the door. "Yes you do." She giggles and they walk outside.
"Hey look!" Levi says, pointing at a gentleman leaving the brothel he and his mother live at. "That's the man who visited mom today!"
"She sure gets a lot of visitors. What do they do?" "I listened at the door once, it sounded like they were hurting her, but then they gave her money and she was happy so...I don't know."
"What? Grown-ups are so weird!" She says with wide-eyed wonder. "Yeah, tell me about it..." He stands on the porch lost in thought for a moment before continuing.
"CAN I kiss you?"
She jumps in alarm and backs away a few steps. "No! Gosh Levi, why would you wanna do that? That's how babies happen!"
He stares at her in round eyed amazement, shaking his head in disbelief. "Really? You're sure??" She nods smartly. "You bet!"
"Well...I wanna kiss you anyway!" Seeing her look of horror, he quickly amends. "Just on the cheek! Not on the lips, gosh!"
"Well...okay...but we have to hide. I do NOT want anyone to see this!" They walk around to the side of the house, where a huge patch of light from a hole to the aboveground looks over her mother's garden.
Gulping nervously he swoops in on her, taking her fully by surprise. She jumps back and covers her mouth quickly, before his lips can connect.
"You SAID on the cheek, Levi!" "I got excited! Here, let me try again." He quickly pecks her cheek, and pulls back. His face is as red as a tomato. They stare at each other in stunned silence.
"Are you going to kiss me back?" "No way!" She cries indignantly, and hits him on the arm before running away. "Tag, Levi! You're it!"
Waking with a chuckle, Levi heads for the shower. Finishing quickly, he heads down to the training grounds, ready to get this day over with.
"Stop being so fucking happy Levi, it's terrifying." He turns to Miche with a roll of his eyes. "That's good Miche, seriously. Why don't you quit the scouts? Take that routine to the streets?"
"The crowds would fucking love me, right?" "They'd be raiding Heather's vegetable stand for shit to throw at you."
"I can have Hanji do a little dance for my opening act." Miche says staring in mock dreaminess off into the distance. "Jesus, they'd throw the whole fucking cart at you, Miche."
Miche throws his head back and laughs heartily. "Now look who's the comedian! Shit Levi, this little lady has worked wonders on you hasn't she?" With that, he turns back to the cadets. "Hey! Try that counterpoint again, that looked like shit!"
"She's a stubborn brat. She-" "If you two are quite finished, maybe you can turn your attention to your jobs." Erwin gives them a quick stern glance, then turns on his heel walking away. Giving him a confused look, Levi turns back to watch the cadets.
"Don't let him bother you Levi. Whatever stick is currently inhabiting his ass will go away eventually. What's your status?" "My status? I don't know what you mean."
"Are you two getting intimate? Or is she just a friend?" He takes a deep sniff. "Well, you still smell like a virgin...."
"What the fuck, Miche? Seriously? You ASK me that? And fuck you." Miche opens his mouth to give a smart ass response, only to get slapped upside the head by Hanji.
"Now, now. Don't be giving him any of YOUR bad advice. Levi is fucking this up brilliantly on his own."
"All I want is to pretend this conversation never happened, you assholes." Levi spits in disgust. "And what do you expect me to do Hanji? Stand back and let her forget all about me again?"
"Of course not. But you can't expect her to just drop her life and run into your arms either. It's been years. Back off." "Wait...seriously Levi? You ARE moving way too fast!"
"It's NOT LIKE THAT! FUCK!" The cadets stop to stare at him in awe, but his glare sends them scuttling back to their training. He sighs, and lowers his voice.
"I love how this feels. I love waking up in the morning with a fucking smile. Hell, I actually love smiling. It's strange, it feels weird but I love it. That's her.
That's what she brought me. The underground isn't a place for happiness and I'll be damned if I'm going to pay her back by letting her rot in that shithole.
I love the idea that I can love her again. The idea that it's possible. What's so fucking wrong with that?" He says, storming off to his quarters.