"Well come and get it then, I'm not going to bring it to you," Halfred shouted out to Lalia after dinner. The family had decided to eat dinner outside this evening, and he had gone in to get some cake.
"But Halfred! You're already over there. Couldn't you just bring me a piece of cake?" Lalia asked from her place at the table.
"You've got two legs, Lalia. You can very well come and get your own."
Halfred grinned as he watched his younger sister stand up and walk slowly inside, turning back to their sisters with a long-suffering look. She didn't know he had already cut her piece of cake, as well as Laurel's and Amaranth's. His protest was only made in jest, and he only used it occasionally. 'I am the oldest after all,' he thought. When Lalia came into the kitchen, he turned and surprised her, handing her one of the plates of cake.
"Halfred! I thought you said…"
"What? And miss the look on your face when you came in here? Why would I do such a thing? Here," he said as he handed her another plate of cake. "You take that to Amaranth. I'll take this to Laurel," he said as he picked up the last plate.
Lalia laughed at him as she lead the way back out of the house. As they approached the table, they heard their sisters laugh uproariously at a joke their father had just told. Lalia handed Amaranth her piece of cake as she sat back down in her place at the table. Halfred put Laurel's plate down in front of her, then set his own down. He did not sit down, but looked at his parents with a smile.
"Ma? Pa? Would you like some cake, too?" he asked politely.
"Yes, please," his father answered. Halfred saw his mother's smile and took that for a 'yes' as well.
Going back into the house, he didn't notice that Lalia had followed him. Humming a little tune to himself, he sliced and plated his parents' cake, picked them up, and was on his way back outside when he noticed Lalia blocking the doorway.
"What's going on with you, Halfred?"
"Whatever do you mean? I'm just getting cake for Ma and Pa."
"No, that's not what I mean and you know it! You've been acting very odd lately. Fetching, serving, helping Ma with the cooking, cleaning, sewing, as well as all the work you do for Pa…" she stopped with her little rant and squinted her eyes, scrutinizing him for a moment.
"Who is she? Who's the lucky lass that's caught your attention?" she asked all of the sudden. The blush that crept up Halfred's face confirmed that she had guessed correctly. Halfred had finally fallen in love! Squealing, Lalia did a little jig, hopped up and down, and clapped her hands. Her face was all smiles and she grabbed one of the plates from Halfred and ran back outside.
"Lalia!" Halfred cried as he took off after her. He wanted to catch her and make her swear not to tell anyone anything. But it was too late.
"Guess what everyone?" Lalia announced to the family as she handed her mother the cake and took her place at the table again. Glancing at a still blushing Halfred, her voice took on a conspiratory, sing-song tone when she had their attention.
"Halfred's in love!"