"Not really impatient," she admitted. "I just, you know, kinda like the idea of being your wife, that's all." She winked at him, abruptly pulling away to hastily turn the burgers as she remembered she was supposed to be cooking.
"This doesn't have anything to do with sex, does it?" he asked, eying her suspiciously as she pulled away from him. He had a feeling it had everything to do with that, but there was no one really stopping them from taking the next step except them.
She snorted with laughter. "No," she promised. "I mean, we'll get there in our own time, but bumping uglies isn't going to change the way I feel about you."
"Are you sure? Because, I mean, getting married isn't gonna change anything except what beds we sleep in," he pointed out. And the fact that they were still living with his mother.
"Yeah, I'm sure." Cas leaned back from the fire, raising her brow in his direction. "Matt, if it turned out that putting your dick in my vag was a death sentence, that still wouldn't change the fact that I want to spend my life with you. Sex would, I guess, be nice, but you can't miss what you've never had, right?"
"Yes, you can!" Matt insisted, but then he was a young man with a young man's libido. He didn't seem too upset though. In fact, he looked more amused than anything else. "Wait ... Why would it be a death sentence?"
"I'm just saying that if we couldn't, it still wouldn't change the fact that I want to marry you, you dipstick," his adoring fiancée informed him with a laugh.
"Oh," he murmured, unsure if he felt relieved or disappointed at what she'd said. It wasn't that sex was all that important to him. Like she'd said, you couldn't miss what you'd never had, but he couldn't deny the fact that he'd fantasized about it. From the look on his face, he was a little confused.
Cas held his gaze for a long moment, her smile still warm. "I mean, I'd offer to strip off right now, but we'll burn dinner if I do," she told him impishly.
"It's okay, I'm just ..." He trailed off with a shake of his head. Women were confusing, that much was certain. She had told him she loved him and had asked him to marry her; that was all that really mattered.
"Matt, it's not something we have to rush," she said quietly, a little shy of saying it aloud. "But ... but it's not something we should be putting off, either. I mean ... I kinda fantasize about it a lot."
"The thing is, you're right," Matt finally admitted. "I don't want to wait forever, but I would for you. So long as we're together, that's all that's really important."
Sitting back beside him, she leaned in close, touching a kiss to his bare shoulder. "Glad we're on the same page," she murmured. "But then, you're always gonna be the academic in this relationship."
"Me?" he asked, a doubtful expression on his face. "You're the smart one, Cas," he told her. Sometimes he thought he only got into marine biology to keep up with her. He'd never been terribly studious back home, more interested in surfing than studying.
She giggled. "Who out of the two of us actually understands homework on the first try?" she pointed out. It wasn't that she was slow or unintelligent, it was simply that she had a mind that turned more easily to practical matters than theoretical ones.
"Point taken," he admitted, though he still thought she was the smarter of the two of them. "I wouldn't have gotten interested in marine biology if it wasn't for you though," he pointed out.
"You've got a gift for it," was her answer as she leaned forward to set the buns on the tray to toast now the burgers were almost done. "You would have found it eventually."
"Maybe someday we can get our own boat do research of our own," he suggested. Right now, they were only interns with the RhyDin Aquarium, at least until they graduated. He wasn't sure what awaited them after that, but he was secretly hoping they'd still be able to work together.
"That would be amazing," Cas agreed. "Maybe if, one day, we can find out a way for me to go underwater indefinitely, like you, we could spearhead research into actual marine behavior, rather than how the creatures behave when they're surprised by humans."
"There has to be a way," he said, circling back to their earlier discussion. This was RhyDin, after all; if it wasn't possible here, it wasn't possible anywhere. "Maybe we should talk to Professor Radcliffe about it."
"Isn't she related to that mermaid woman?" They'd met that little branch of the Granger family precisely once, but apparently it had stuck in the mind.
"Uh, I think so," Matt said uncertainly. "She's married to Cian." Who was the son of the man his mother was currently dating and living with. "Are you hoping to trade your legs for a tail?" he teased.
"What, you don't want me to go all Darryl Hannah on you?" she asked cheekily, winking at him. "I guess I'd have to grow my hair a bit longer if I wanted to go full Splash."
"So long as you don't screech," he said, a teasing smirk on his face. "Actually, I mean the Disney version. You know, the one where the mermaid trades her voice for legs?"
"Yeah, but if I traded my voice for something, I would lose out on teasing you in certain ways, and you are totally adorable when you get flustered," she countered.
"Seriously, Cas ... Do you think Cian's wife might know of some way you could breathe under water?" he asked, somewhat dubiously again. Just saying it sounded ridiculous, but stranger things had been known to happen, especially in Rhy'Din.
"We could always ask." Cas shrugged, finally adding cheese slices to the tops of the still cooking burgers. Dinner was almost ready to eat. "It's a good place to start, at the very least. And if she doesn't know, she might have some ideas."
Matt frowned, wishing she could be like him, though he wasn't entirely sure what he was exactly. A mutant, his father had said. A freak was more like it, but here in Rhy'Din, it didn't really matter. No one cared if he had gills or if his brother had wings. "Maybe," he admitted. "I hope so."