Olli and Frida (Chasing Pebbles) — Bonus Scenes
This is an Oliver and Frida bonus. It should be read after reading CHASING PEBBLES (Without Filter 1). It takes place at the same time as ONLY SOMETIMES (Without Filter 3).
I wrote these extra scenes since I’ve had several readers request more Olli and Frida. It means so much to me that you want more CHASING PEBBLES, and I’m excited to share these cute little scenes with you. Please note that this is free content with the sole purpose of making you smile.
~ January ~
“Come on, Norbert, let’s go upstairs and get some breakfast.”
My cuddly dog dips his paw into a mostly melted snowdrift. I do an odd little tap dance on the pavement to keep warm while he finishes with his exploration. I should’ve changed into something warmer instead of just throwing a jacket on top of my pyjamas. I didn’t bother since I can’t wait to get back into bed with Olli.
For once, he didn’t wake up when Norbert started complaining, so I quickly snuck out and let Olli sleep in, something he rarely does. My boyfriend is constantly moving, and he’s been busy since he graduated and secured a full-time position in the video game development firm where he worked while studying. Still, Olli’s determined to find the right balance, and he prioritises his family, friends, and me. I sometimes worry if he made the right choice not to pursue a career in music management, since I know music is his passion, just like art is mine. But Olli always convinces me that having time for the people who matter to him is what’s most important. He still helps Patricia and Jack out at Holly’s from time to time. I love coming along for a concert and seeing him work. It usually ends with him pulling me onto the dancefloor so we can dance and laugh until we’re sweaty and out of breath.
Norbert finally agrees to come upstairs to our flat, waggling eagerly the closer we get to his breakfast. I set out his dog food and change his water in the cosy Copenhagen kitchen. I’m not sure I can fall asleep again, and I cast a longing look at my bubblegum-pink coffee machine before I tiptoe to the bed. I want to cuddle with Olli more than I want coffee or sleep.
He’s lying on his side, all long arms and legs and wild, light brown hair. He looks gorgeous and peaceful, and he’s wearing plaid pyjama trousers just like mine. I bought them as a joke around Christmas time, but Olli went all in and claims they’re his favourite now.
Though I’m careful not to wake him as I lie down and snuggle closer, it doesn’t take long before Olli holds me tight, his warm hand on my stomach under my t-shirt, his bracelets brushing my skin in a familiar way. I sigh contentedly, and Olli whispers, “Good morning, Blondie.”
“Shhh, you don’t have to wake up yet.”
He ignores my suggestion as his lips find the crook of my neck, kissing me slowly while his hand moves up my skin to circle one nipple, sending shivers over my skin. Desire flares low in my stomach, and I push back against his body, enjoying the growl that I know is reserved just for me. I can’t explain how he manages to sound both dangerously turned on and totally eager at the same time, but I love it.
He’s still kissing my neck, inhaling deeply. “You always smell so good,” he says. “Vanilla.”
In a quick movement, Olli moves us from spooning to having me flat on my back, him on top, bracing himself on his arms. I smile when I meet his kind, brown eyes, lit up with enough heat to make me wiggle under his hold. As I run my fingers through his messy hair, he leans in to capture my lips.
My hands glide under his soft Star Wars t-shirt while we kiss. It’s so wonderful that it takes me a moment to realise how minty he tastes. I reluctantly move my mouth from his and ask, “You’ve already been up?”
“I woke up when you closed the door and took Norbert outside,” Olli answers distractedly, his fingers playing with my hair, looking at me like I’m something magical. He grins. “And I decided I had plans for you.”
I shake my head, trying to hide my smile. “Shouldn’t you try and sleep in? I went outside in the freezing snowstorm so that you could sleep.” We both know there are only a few snow drifts left, but I can’t help it; I’m a little dramatic.
“Not really what I’m in the mood for,” Olli answers with his boyish grin that I never learned to resist.
He rests more of his weight on me, and I moan at how good it feels. It’s also very obvious he won’t be sleeping any time soon.
“Take this off then,” I say, pushing his t-shirt up his lean torso. He helps me and throws it on the floor. Soon we’re both naked, kissing slowly, savouring every moment of these lazy hours before our full weekend plans start.
“I need you so much, Olli,” I whisper huskily when I can’t take the anticipation anymore.
“I always need you, Blondie.”
“We have to get up now. It’ll probably take me an hour to finish the illustration for my comic, and I’d like to have it done before we go see your family,” I say as I get out from the warm covers and Olli’s warm embrace. I feel sated, and my smile is huge while I pick up my knickers and pyjamas from the floor. I just had the perfect start to my day, and I’m excited to finish the work for my little comic. It started as a school assignment the first year at my graphic design school, but it’s become surprisingly popular. I turn the mundane but lovely everyday moments into cute, heartfelt drawings, and a certain nerdy guy in a dinosaur t-shirt makes an appearance more than once.
“Want to shower together?” Olli asks as he stretches.
“We don’t have time. We never behave. And I don’t want to keep your family waiting.” I love Olli’s family, and I’m always happy to hang out with them.
“They’re your family too, you know, even if you think you’re too young to be my official wifey,” Olli says conversationally. He’s pulling on his pyjamas trousers, utterly unaware that my heart is pounding loudly and trying to escape my chest.
A couple of years ago, we went to Jack and Patricia’s second wedding. Olli said something like, ‘I can’t wait until it’s our turn,’ and then, in truest Olli fashion, started rambling about what he imagined our wedding would be like. I might have told him he was nuts, mostly because I didn’t know if he was serious. I liked the idea way too much despite the nervous butterflies doing acrobatics in my stomach and the way my pulse leaps whenever I think about it. I love the idea of being an official part of Oliver’s family. And I love the idea of telling the world just how much we believe in us.
Because I do believe in us. I’m going to marry Oliver Ravn one day. I know that with absolute certainty.
“Watch out. If you keep saying that, one day I’ll be like, ‘sure, let’s do it!’ I might already have a Pinterest board with beautiful white gowns,” I tease. His nonchalant ways make me feel a little unsure. I’m incredibly grateful for our world, the home we’ve created together, and Olli finds new ways to show me his love every day. My fear of always wanting more than people are willing to give, of never being important enough, just lives within me—luckily, turning smaller each day.
I don’t have time to react before Olli pulls me back onto the bed, and I land on top of him, giggling.
His eyes turn darker as he looks at me intently, but there’s also something hopeful and excited in his gaze. “Really? Can I see it? I have an idea what you might choose.”
I shake my head, but my cheeks heat up, and I realise Olli is holding me so I can’t escape his scrutiny. “I don’t. It was a joke. But I’m curious, what do you think I’d go for?” I don’t know why I’m asking about hypothetical wedding dresses or why it makes me hold my breath.
“I think… You could go full princess dress and maybe do black nails and eyeliner to mix it up. Or a lacy, bohemian dress and flowers in your hair. You might also wear pink trainers instead of heels, at least for dancing.”
“Oh.” I’m struggling with meeting his eyes, because everything he just said was so spot on that goosebumps erupt all over my skin.
Oliver must sense that I’m trying to avert my eyes, as he loosens his hold on me, giving my temple a sweet kiss. “I’m sorry if I’m too much. I can stop making comments about marrying you until you’re ready. And if you never want to get married, that’s okay too. As long as I get to share this messy, wonderful life with you.”
My eyes feel watery, and I hold his face in my hands, kissing him feverishly.
When we break apart, a little breathless, Oliver smirks. “That was a good way to distract me.”
“I wasn’t trying to distract you, I just needed to kiss you. And I want it all with you, Olli. So maybe you do need to stop making these comments if you don’t want me to get any ideas.” I smile at his stunned face and make my way to the shower, butterflies and flushed cheeks.
Patricia is still on the phone with a supplier, so I pick up my laptop and lean back in what used to be my office chair. I haven’t worked at Holly’s for years, but I’m still close to Patricia and always happy to help. I was with Frida at her grandparents’ when Patricia called. Her new booking system kept messing up the dates, and it was freaking her out since Holly’s has some pretty cool names playing over the summer. Frida will join me later for a beer—meaning she’ll get some cider that’s ninety percent sugar—in the spring sunshine before we leave for Copenhagen.
The booking system error was an easy fix, and I’m glad I have something to do while waiting for Patricia. Especially since I’ve already made little origami stars out of the blank pages in her notebook while I waited for her PC to install an update. I quickly organise them in a neat pattern around her keyboard before I focus on my research.
Twenty minutes later and I’m feeling just as lost as when I started planning a few weeks ago.
“Is it bad? Please tell me I don’t have to reconfirm all my bookings,” Patricia says from the doorway, and I jump in my seat at the sound of her voice.
“You don’t. It’s all good. I think your hubby was to blame. At least your PC suddenly wanted to do American dates instead of European dates, and the system got confused. It’s all fixed now.”
“Thank you, Dimples! Why did you look so frustrated then?” Patricia asks as she walks toward me, her huge retro sunglasses working as a headband to keep her shiny black curls out of her face. She stops when she reaches the desk and raises an eyebrow at me, picking up a little paper star with a sigh, but her lips form a reluctant grin.
“I’m frustrated because I have a problem I don’t know how to fix.”
“Oh dear, what is it?”
I roll my eyes at her attitude, but I’m feeling uncharacteristically insecure. Not knowing where to start, I turn my laptop around so she can see my screen. It takes Patricia a few minutes and some clicking to make sense of the one million tabs I have open.
“Holy shit, is this what I think it is? Also, some of these inspirations are awful, Olli. Flash mobs really aren’t a thing anymore.”
“I’m aware of it. I’ve Googled everything I could think of. I’ve read hundreds of proposal stories…”
“That’s the problem? You don’t know how to ask her?”
“Yes! I want it to be perfect,” I say, rolling the beads on one of my favourite bracelets between my fingers. “I want to show her how important she is and make sure she’ll say yes.” The last part comes out a bit quieter.
“Ah, is that the real issue? You’re second-guessing yourself and by distracting yourself with trying to create the most epic proposal in the world, you can keep your insecurities at bay?”
I curse and shake my head. “What’s up with you analysing my behaviour? This used to be the other way around.”
Patricia smirks. “I know, but I learned from the best.”
“I just can’t think of anything good enough.”
“Did you get the ring already? Can I see it?”
I pick up my backpack from the floor and grab the small velvet box.
“I expected you to show me a picture, not the real deal.” Patricia snickers as she opens it.
“I had Niko and Jo with me to the store when I had already narrowed it down, and her sister Lotus on a video call. They all agreed with my choice.”
“I see why. It’s stunning,” Patricia says, sounding unusually emotional.
“Are you all right, there?” I ask with a grin. “Are you getting all sentimental?”
“Nope, I’m just realising how old I am, when the annoying kid I couldn’t get rid of is about to propose to his girl.” Her voice is raspy as she dabs her eyes.
I pick up the box myself and look at the ring. It’s still perfect. White gold with a small sparkly diamond in the middle and pink rubies surrounding it, making it look like the cutest pink flower. It’s the perfect ring for my Blondie. I know it.
“Olli, I think you should ask her the way you would if you were guaranteed a yes. Ask her the way that feels truest and most like the two of you, instead of worrying about making some big show.”
“I think you’re right. Because then I think I know what I want to do…” My thoughts are spinning, and I regret making Patricia’s notebook into paper stars since I have nowhere to scribble my notes. I’m aware I have my laptop, and my Chewbacca sticker smiles encouragingly at me next to the keyboard, but some thoughts are so precious they can only be written by hand. But I have an idea, and my heart drums loudly as I make my plan.
I’ve always had an ambivalent relationship with my birthday. I love celebrating with the people I love and eating birthday cake—even if I’m the one baking it—and I mean, who doesn’t love presents? But I also have plenty of memories of feeling disappointed when one or both of my parents had to work late on my birthday or were travelling for work and left me behind. Lotus always tried to make it special when I was little, but she moved to London when I was still a child. My brother only remembers if he’s somewhere with wifi and Facebook reminds him.
I’m fortunate to have a considerate boyfriend who goes all in every year, making my day wonderful and full of laughter and love. Even before we were a couple, he remembered and made me feel special with funny but thoughtful gifts. Olli always arranges cosy celebrations with our close friends and his family. The Ravns have sung birthday songs for me more times than my own family has.
Today my birthday falls on a workday, but Olli got up early and surprised me with breakfast and coffee in bed. It was perfect, and his parents even called and wished me a happy birthday. Olli got me some drawing supplies I’ve been dying to try but couldn’t afford since I’m still a student. He also said he has another present for me later. I feel giddy and like I’m the luckiest girl in the world.
He’s coming to Enebæk later since I don’t have classes today, so I plan to finish an assignment and then read on the train to see my grandparents for afternoon coffee and my grannie’s rhubarb trifle. Our neighbours kindly offered to look after Norbert, so I’m free for whatever Olli has planned.
Olli comes out of the bedroom dressed in grey trousers and a well-fitted blue henley, his hair only moderately messy. Seeing him in adulting clothes every day still feels a little foreign to me, but he looks beautiful, and I grin at him from where I’m standing in the kitchen with a second mug of coffee. I’m still in my sleep shorts and camisole—being a student has some advantages.
He walks to me and takes my face in his hand, lips brushing over mine, instantly making me crave more of him.
“I can’t wait to see you later,” he whispers, and something about his voice sounds a little nervous.
“You okay?” I ask, leaning into him, feeling safe.
He smiles with excitement and a little mischief, but I know him well enough to detect his nerves, and I bet he would be fiddling with his bracelets if he wasn’t holding my face.
“Yeah, I’m good. I can’t wait to see you after work. It’s going to be a long day,” Olli says with a sigh, his eyes full of so much warmth I feel like tearing up for no good reason.
“I’ll look forward to it. Anything I need to know about your surprise? Do I need to dress up?”
“You just need to be you.”
I check my appearance in the hallway mirror at my grandparents’ summer cottage. My blonde hair hangs loose and wavy down my back, and I’m wearing my favourite black sundress with tiny pink roses, my worn denim jacket, black canvas trainers, and simple make-up with a bit of black eyeliner. I have no idea where we’re going tonight, but I’m sure it’s going to be lovely, and I hope I’m dressed all right.
My grandparents rarely stay at their cottage, but today they wanted to, which I honestly prefer over staying at their flat stuffed with antiques and heirlooms. The cottage is mainly used for my family’s infrequent visits, and sometimes Olli and I stay here instead of the guestroom in his parents’ flat.
This cottage holds so many memories. It’s where Mum and I stayed when we came back to Enebæk. The ache I feel when I think back on that time in my life becomes lighter every day. I also choose to focus on all the beautiful memories I cherish, made right here, from childhood adventures to the summer that changed everything. I blush, remembering why the bedroom with the lavender wallpaper is my favourite and why thunderstorms hold a special place in my heart.
Walking back to the veranda, I hug my grandparents goodbye. “Thank you so much for the lovely celebration. Olli should be here soon, so I think I’ll just try and call him.”
“You’re welcome, sweetheart. And no need for that. He asked us to tell you to meet him on the beach,” my grandmother says, her eyes twinkling, and it’s clear she knows something I don’t. Grandad gives me a big, silly smile. I raise an eyebrow at them, but it’s all I’m going to get, so I grin and wave as I leave.
Maybe he’s planned a picnic on the beach. That sounds wonderful, and I don’t mind some time just the two of us instead of going out for dinner or a concert. I’m having a small birthday party on Saturday, so I’d love to spend tonight just with my Oliver.
I follow the pebbled road down to the beach. Most holiday homes and cottages are still empty since it’s so early in the season, but the May weather is mild and sunny. Rosehip bushes are just waiting to bloom, and I inhale the characteristic scent of the sea that’s present in all my best memories.
There are only a few people on the beach. I spot a few dog walkers and couples on an early evening stroll. Olli is standing a bit further away, looking at the water, and I take a moment to appreciate the view before almost running to him.
Maybe he senses I’m near, because he turns around, and I can see he’s smiling even from a distance.
“Hi,” I say as I reach him, and Olli immediately lifts me from the ground, making me giggle.
“Hi, Frida, happy birthday.” His voice sounds different, like he’s anxious, but he steals a kiss at the first possible moment, and I sink into the feeling of being in his arms, being kissed like he can’t get enough.
As we let go, I notice that I was right about the picnic. A cosy blanket and basket wait on the sand behind us, and I smile.
“I love this, that we are celebrating my birthday just the two of us.”
Olli grins back, but he seems a little fidgety, so I entwine our fingers. “Is something up with you?”
He squeezes my hand and clears his throat. “I wanted to ask you something.”
The seriousness in his tone makes me feel a little on edge, and I try to find the answer in his brown eyes. The only thing they tell me is that Olli loves me.
“Frida, Blondie, my favourite human.” His voice breaks a little, and his hand trembles in mine.
My thoughts aren’t making much sense, but I’m feeling simultaneously aware and lightheaded. My heart rate picks up, and my mouth feels dry. I think I know what’s happening, at least that’s what my gut instinct tells me, but I try to push the idea away. It can’t be, right?
Oliver looks so nervous that I lean into him to capture another kiss, and I feel his body relax a touch as our mouths melt together.
He runs his fingers through my hair, holding me close to him but with enough distance that we can see each other’s faces.
“Frida, I’m greedy when it comes to you. I want everything. Every birthday, every magical everyday moment, I want to share it all with you. We’re so right. And I-I think you know that, too… But I’m afraid this is me going a bit overboard because I’m so happy with what we have, what we share. I just, I want it all. I tried not to be pushy, but my heart is just so darn greedy for you.” His eyes are wet, and I realise mine are too as a tear runs down my cheek.
“I’m greedy for you too, Olli. I love you so much,” I whisper shakily, and in return, I get a smile of joy and wonder. We’ve moved closer to each other, and I have to tilt my face to see his.
“I want to be your husband. I want to celebrate our love. I… You’re my person. And I’ve always been yours. I think I’ve known since I was eleven years old. There is no one I’d rather share the adventures with, the random busy Thursdays, life… I was supposed to get down on one knee, but I need to feel you in my arms. Frida, will you marry me?”
“Oh my gosh, yes, yes, yes!! I want everything with you.” My sobs muddle my words, but my smile is huge, and I feel euphoric. I’m also still shaky, so I’m grateful that Olli kisses me and gives us a moment to just feel.
He lifts me and twirls me around as we laugh, and I hold him as tight as possible.
When he sets me down, he takes a box from his pocket, and I realise I didn’t even think about whether or not he had a ring. But he’s my Olli, so I’m not the least bit surprised.
“This is for you. I hope you like it.”
My hands tremble so much it takes a couple of attempts to open the box, and I gasp loudly as I take in the ring. It’s gorgeous, and I tell Oliver how much I love it, in between attacking him with kisses.
He puts it on my finger with equally unsteady movements.
“I adore it. And I adore you,” I whisper.
He looks as happy as I feel, light and moved, and a little ecstatic. His boyish grin is back, but his eyes are full of emotion.
“One more thing.” Olli steers me back to the picnic blanket, and as we sit down, he finds something on his phone. “I know that family and feeling like you belong is important to you. And I mean what I’ve said before, my family is yours too, no matter if we’re married or not.”
He presses the video call on his phone, putting his arm around me, and I lean my head on his shoulder.
His call is accepted, and the screen fills with his parents, Marie and Mikkel, as well as both of his sisters, Celeste and Nessa, even though she lives in Copenhagen. They’re all cheering and grinning, and they must have been waiting for his call.
“Congratulations!! I’m so excited!! I can’t believe you’re going to be my official daughter-in-law! This is the best news. I love you both so much!!” Marie screams while drying her tears on her sleeve, and I’m tearing up again too. They continue to tell me how much they love me, how happy I make Olli, how much they believe in us, and how happy they are to have me in their family. Olli was right. His family loves me, with or without a wedding.
I’ve found my people, my everyday happiness, my home. My person. Olli always calls me his favourite human. He’s mine too, and I’m overwhelmed by gratitude and love.
This life with Oliver is the best.