Background on Rayne
Rayne has worked with Tuck and FDR for four years. She's been in love with Tuck since their first mission but they only got together after Lauran chose FDR. The Ex never happened here.
I was nervous as I looked into my mirror. I was wearing a simple green summer dress with gold sandals. My hair was curled nicely and I wore a light dusting of makeup.
"Tuck, I can't do this," I muttered feeling my stomach twist and writhe.
"My parents are eager to meet you," he told me coming up behind me. I stared at our reflection and for the first time saw what all our friends did. We were a cute a couple. Our bodies fit together and we just seemed to match. Tuck kissed my neck and wrapped his arms around my waist.
"I love you Rayne. Just think about that," he told me. I smiled and turned in his arms. I kissed him tenderly feeling a bit more confident.
We parked outside of the restaurant and my nerves returned. I took a deep breath and he took my hand. We walked in and found his mother and father.
"Tuck," his mom cried hugging him tight. His father shook his hand and smiled at him.
"Mother, father, this is my girlfriend Rayne," he introduced.
"Hello," I greeted holding out my hand. Both of them looked at me for a long moment. I hesitated as his mother's stare turned critical.
"Hello," his mother greeted cautiously. I shook her hand and turned to his father. He didn't shake my hand. I let it drop and threw a fearful look at Tuck. I was a spy, a mixed martial artist, a gymnast and an assassin when it was called for and yet I was scared of the two people I was with now.
At the table Tuck pulled out my chair for me as usual and I noticed that his father did the same.
"I see where Tuck learned his impeccable manners," I tried.
"Flattery is unneeded," he told me. I fell silent and dropped my gaze to the table. Tuck's hand gripped my knee and squeezed reassuringly.
"Are you ready to order?" the waiter asked.
"Yes," Mrs. Jones said, "I would like lobster meal." I glanced over my menu. I didn't usually eat at places like this so I had no idea what to order.
"Darling, why don't we get a meal to share?" Tuck asked.
"That'd be great," I said. I saw Mr. and Mrs. Jones exchange disapproving looks. I took another deep breath.
Our meals arrived and Tuck and I shared a plate.
"So, are you in the travel business as well?" Mr. Jones asked.
"Yes, I'm also a travel agent. It's how Tuck and I met," I said the lie slipping easily from my tongue.
"I see. Do you have any plans on settling down?" he asked.
"Well what do you mean by settling down?" I asked in return.
"Do you plan on having children, owning a home, quitting your job?"
"Children yes, home yes but I want to continue to work," I told them. Disapproval glimmered in both of their eyes and I wondered what I said wrong.
"You want to continue working? Why do you not want to be a stay at home mother?" Mrs. Jones asked.
"Well," I proceeded with caution, "I would stay at home for the first few years to take care of my child but I would go back to work when the child was old enough." they glanced at each other and I began to panic slightly.
"Well I have to go to the powder room. Come with me?" Mrs. Jones asked me. I stood hesitantly throwing a frightened look at Tuck. He gave me a reassuring smile but I knew him well enough to see the trouble brewing in his eyes.
In the bathroom Mrs. Jones touched up her makeup. I hadn't brought any so I just stood there awkwardly.
"Why do you like my son?" she asked bluntly. I swallowed wondering how to answer.
"Well Mrs. Jones, first of all, I don't like your son. I love Tuck. He's wonderful. He's smart and sweet and sensitive. He's funny and makes me feel as if I am the most beautiful woman in the world. He pushes me to be a better person and loves me despite all my flaws." She looked at me.
"Well I don't know how. You have so many," she told me sharply. I bit the inside of my cheek. Her words stung.
"You're not pretty enough. You're obviously not smart enough. You're American. You don't want to be a stay at home mom like any rational woman should be. You wear ridicules clothes and are a bit fat." her words hit me hard and I felt tears prick my eyes. However, I wasn't a seasoned professional spy by crying at every person who threw worded darts at me. I controlled my face into an emotionless mask.
"I don't want you dating my son," she told me firmly walking out. I gripped the sink, its edges cutting into my palms.
I walked back out and saw that Tuck's eyes were angry. His father must have said something. He glanced at me as I sat down. His hand found mine under the table and he squeezed it hard.
"So what are your favorite things to do?" Mr. Jones asked. I swallowed.
"I enjoy reading the classics and photography. I also like swimming and running," I told them truthfully hoping it would be enough to help a little bit.
"Running?" Mrs. Jones asked looking skeptical. I bit my lip.
"That's an annoying habit. Stop biting your lip," she snapped. I stopped and Tuck tensed beside me. I rested my hand on his knee calming him. I didn't want to mess up their relationship.
"What classics do you like?" Mr. Jones asked. I was convinced that nothing I said would change their minds about me so I just went with my honest answer.
"I can't choose. I love them all," I told them.
"Indecisive," I heard Mrs. Jones mutter. I sighed.
"Is there anything sophisticated you can do?" she demanded. Tuck opened his mouth and I squeezed his knee.
"I play five different instruments very well and I can speak multiple languages."
"What instruments?" Mr. Jones asked.
"Piano, cello, violin, flute and guitar."
"Spanish, French, Italian, Latin, Arabic, German and Russian," I told them. I could speak many more but I decided not to inform them of that.
"Well you aren't completely hopeless. At least you have some sophistication," Mr. Jones commented.
"What school did you go to?"Mrs. Jones asked. I hesitated. How to answer? They might check up on me. Of course with my resources I could get a student record into any school I wanted. But I didn't want t lie to them. If I was to make this work they would have to accept me for who I was.
"I didn't really go to a specific school. I traveled," I told them. I saw any respect I might have earned from them leave and I quailed.
"I take it back. You are hopeless," Mr. Jones said. Tuck jerked from his seat.
"Alright that's enough. Come on Rayne we're leaving. When you can be civil to Rayne then you can call," Tuck told them. He took my hand and I grabbed my purse all too eager to leave.
"And you're weak," his mother finished. I stopped. I could handle being called many things but I would never bow down to the W word. I turned and fixed Mrs. Jones with a calm stare.
"Mrs. Jones, I can assure you that I am many things but I will never let someone call me weak," I started. She interrupted.
"You let my son fight your battles," she said smugly.
"And I do not find that shameful. I like the fact that he is willing to protect me but don't think that I can't fight my own battles. There is a simple truth here. I love Tuck. I love him with all my heart and I would die for him in a second. Now, I do not want my presence to cause strife. If you want to see your son please do. I know what it is like to live without parents and I don't want that to happen. If you don't want me to be there, I won't but I will not give him up either. I love him to much," I finished and turned to Tuck, "Please stay, you haven't seen your family in a while. I can catch a cab and I'll see you at home." I stepped away, "It was lovely to meet you," I told his parents before heading towards the door. A hand stopped me.
"No Rayne, if they can't approve of you then I won't stay with them," he told me. Tears pricked my eyes. He was choosing me over his family.
"Tuck!" Mrs. Jones cried.
"I'm sorry mother but I love Rayne. If you can find it in you to approve then you can see me again. Until then, goodbye." he took my hand intertwining our fingers and pulled me to the door. We jumped in our car and he took off. We were both silent until we reached our home. We stepped out and walked inside. I closed the door and locked it with a soft click.
"I'm sorry," he murmured softly. I rested my hand on his shoulder.
"No, I'm sorry. I wish I could be the perfect girl," I told him. He turned and his grey blue eyes flamed with anger.
"Don't ever think that," he ordered fiercely, "You are the perfect woman for me and I love everything about you. Don't listen to them." He yanked me into his arms and I smiled as he held me tightly.
"I love you," I whispered.
"I love you to," he whispered back.