I put my book down when I heard someone knock on the door, a small frown on my face. I made my way toward the front door and opened it.
"Hello, I'm Mr. Collins from the foster care center."
My eyes widened slightly at this answer, not expecting him to come a few days after Ante told me about it, as I stepped aside to let him enter. "Ante told me you would come but I didn't expect you to come while he's working."
"The best way to see if a house is fit for a child is to come unannounced." He replied and I could hear the smile in his voice.
"Sure. Would you like something to drink? Or would you like to visit first?" I asked as I closed the door behind him.
"Let's visit first." He answered and I nodded.
I started to show him around, starting by the kitchen, the living room and the office before going upstairs to show him the bathroom and the bedrooms.
"It's a beautiful house. Well decorated. How long have you been living here?"
"A long time now. Ante inherited it from a... From someone he considered like his father." I told him as we made our way downstairs. "Would you like some tea or coffee?"
"A coffee would be great. I have a few more questions to ask you, if you don't mind."
We went into the kitchen and I took a coffee pod that I put in the machine and asked the machine to start. It bipped once it was finished and I carefully took the cup and put it on the table before making one for myself.
"I've never seen a coffee machine like that. Looks fancy." He commented curiously and I smiled.
"Almost everything in this kitchen have a voice option. It has been a life saver for me." I said before sitting on a chair once my cup was ready. "So, what did you want to talk about?"
"He told you about Ethan, right?"
"He did. I know it won't be easy but I'm sure he will be able to help him." I replied truthfully as I put my hands around the steamy cup, enjoying its warmth.
"Have you already seen him at work?"
"No, of course not. And he doesn't tell me much about what happens in his office because of the Confidential medical information. But I've known him for almost 30 years now and I've witnessed the work he did on himself. He came from so far and evolved so much. I truly believe he can help everyone else." I replied, a small smile on my lips as I remembered everything that happened.
"He told me his story and his will to fight is impressive. What would you say is his worst flaw?"
I took a minute to think about this question before answering. "He tends to overthink easily and take things too much at heart. It's not always a bad thing but it's not always easy. Especially with a job like his."
"Tell me more." He added simply and I could hear the interest in his voice.
"Sometimes, after some particularly difficult days, I can feel that his mood is down. He's lost in his thoughts and I don't know... He's just not as usual. When he's like that, I give him some space and I'm here for him if he needs me. Even if it's just for a hug." I explain, hoping it made sense.
"You two seems great for each other. Thank you for your time. Do you have any questions?"
"If everything is fine, he would come in the next few weeks, that's right?"
"That's right. He's a really shy and fearful child and he needs time to trust people. But once he trusts someone, he's a really good kid. He just had a hard beginning." He explained, making me nod.
Saying I wasn't nervous would be a lie but I felt like it was too late to back down and change my mind. Plus, Ante told me everything would be figured out before he arrived so I had no reasons not to trust him. I thanked him, once again, for his time and I accompanied him to the front door. I closed the door behind him and went back in the kitchen to prepare tonight's dinner.
I pulled out some carrots that I put in the mixer for a few minutes. Once that was done, I put the liquid in a pan before taking some pre-cut meat out of the fridge. I put it in a plate before taking some spices that were always in the kitchen cupboard right next to the fridge to put on the meat. I then put the plate in the oven and closed it before asking for it to start heating at the right temperature and asked for a reminder in twenty minutes. I then pushed a button to start cooking the liquid, wanting to make some carrot puree. I didn't lie when I said that these devices had been life saving. Who would have thought that I would be able to make something else than sandwiches?
A few minutes later, I pushed the same button again, turning off the cooking plate. I then took a bigger bowl and carefully transferred the puree, using a spatula to remove everything. I then put the bowl on the counter before setting the table. A voice reminded me about the meat in the oven and I asked to turn it off. I waited a few minutes before taking oven mitts that went up to my elbows and opened the oven to take the plate that I put on the middle of the table. I, then, closed the oven and removed the mitts, just in time as I heard the front door being opened.
"Hey." Ante said and I could hear him walk closer to me.
"Hi. Good day?" I asked, smiling as I felt his lips on mine.
"Not bad. Made some great progress with some children. What about you? It smells delicious."
"Someone from the foster care center came this afternoon to visit the house and talk a little." I informed him as I stepped away.
"R-Really? How did it go?" He asked and I could hear the surprise in his voice.
"I was a little surprised someone came while you weren't here but it went well. I showed him around and then we talked a little in the kitchen." I said before describing him more in details what happened.
"I'm glad it went well. The room is almost ready to welcome him. I can't wait." He said in relief and I smiled.
We sat around the table and started to eat. During the meal, I listened to him talk about the different babysitters he found that seemed great and about the different interviews that were going to happen soon. I listened, happy to hear him being so enthusiastic. I was hoping he would find the perfect babysitter from these interviews as I knew it was only a matter of time before the kid moved here. As we went to bed, I pulled him closer and listened to his heartbeat while closing my eyes. I was curious to discover what the future held for us...