Edelweiss and her new “life coach” had planned to get started the following day. Malcolm suggested they handle cooking first, with that whole fire-sometimes-causing-death thing and all. So he arrived at her house midmorning, ready to begin.
Ede was right happy to see him.
Since Malcolm had broken the hug barrier, Ede had been taking advantage and hugging him whenever she could get away with it. Hello, goodbye. He certainly didn’t mind, only sometimes her hugs felt less like “hugs” and more like full-contact body rubs.
“These hugs are getting a little, um..”
“Awesome?” she said, still clinging to his middle.
“‘Distracting,‘ is the word I was looking for.” He smiled, reluctantly increasing the distance between them. “How about we make a ‘no handling’ rule while we’re working, ok?”
“Suit yourself,” she said, feigning disinterest. “So, what are we making?”
“You will be making pasta primavera. Nothing too complicated, but a step up from sandwiches. Knife, stovetop.”
“So, one of the main things you’re going to want to consider when cooking is serving size. It’s usually most economical to make a little bit more than you need and keep the leftovers in the fridge for later, but if you make more than you’ll actually eat in time it’ll wind up being a waste of money.”
“That makes sense,” she said. Duh, really.
“Since there’s two of us and your mom’ll be home later, let’s have you make a 4 serving batch.”
Ede set to prepping the ingredients. Lots of chopping. Everyone knows how to chop stuff, so she didn’t even bother to take care with it.
“Ow! Squirrely plum!” Ede cursed, grabbing her finger.
“Hmm,” said Malcolm. “I don’t recall this recipe using plums.”
“Not plums,” she said, “plumming peppers!”
Malcolm chuckled at her fierceness, but wasn’t without sympathy. “C’mere, let’s see.”
He took her hands gently, assessing injury.
“Well,” he said, “I think you’re going to live.”
“You just broke the rule,” she smirked, “You’re handling.”
He smiled. “I’d better let go then,” he said, dropping one of her hands.
“You’ll want to get those knives sharpened,” he said earnestly, getting back to the task at hand. “The ‘plums’ will be less slippery if the blade can penetrate them on contact.”
When the sauce was assembled and it came time to stir the pot, Ede got a little overzealous. She stirred so hard that she lost grip of the handle and the spoon slipped from her fingers and flung off to the unknown. She grabbed another and started again, and did it a second time! Malcolm had to come over to show her how it’s done.
“You’re not trying to beat it into submission, Edelweiss. You just want your strokes to warm it all the way through, without letting it burn.”
Ede’s glances have a way of making the recipient feel stripped completely bare. And when she smiles at you the way she does afterward, you feel like she’s smiling at your naked form standing there. Malcolm must have been pretty comfortable with his own nudity, ’cause he refused to crack under the pressure. Mostly.
“Sorry, what?” Ede asked.
“I don’t even know,” he said. “Something about a spoon?”
Quit horsing around, you two! Geez. Anyhow, after much painful not-flirting, finally Ede’s dish was complete, and it looked pretty darn good!
It also smelled good! Who knew?
Tasted pretty darn good, too! You might even say it was Excellent. ;D
And so the two enjoyed a lovely meal of pasta primavera and chatted well into the afternoon. Yes, this seemed like it’d be a fine arrangement. Lots of fun, anyway. And they weren’t likely to starve.