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Peregrine

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Re: The Oldest Fires
« Reply #60 on: December 12, 2014, 02:33:30 am »
Liz didn't believe a word Marcy said, but she humored her. She rolled her eyes and shrugged about the interview. "I'd be shocked if he gave it to me." Though she wouldn't be. She gave her the high points, ate some fries, and pretended to drink the drink she ordered.

She stayed until the half and then made up an excuse about reports and paperwork she had to get done early tomorrow to keep the job she actually had. She made sure the bartender wouldn't give Marcy too many more drinks and paid him to make sure she got a cab home and then she left.

She went back to her temporary flat. She'd lived here for a year, and still it was practically empty. There was a single chair, small coffee table and a lamp in her living room, a large generic black and white picture on the wall where a TV might be. Pulling off her heels as she stepped through the door, she walked barefoot across the empty hardwood floors and to the only bed room.

There wasn't much to look at here either, a bed, a dresser, a nightstand with a lamp, a door to a bathroom and a door to the walk in closet, which is where she headed with a smile, stripping off the corporate persona.

Thirty minutes later she was down in the underground garage of her building, a smile on her face as swung her leg over her Ducati Streetfighter and it growled to life under her. She ran her hands down the skin tight jeans, zipped up her spare leather jacket or a slashed purple t-shirt and pulled her helmet on.

She parked her bike away from prying eyes, not wanting to be bombarded with questions tonight. Things were just getting started when she got there and smiled as she melted into the pulsing crowd,. She checked the roster of other racers for the night and then walked among the cars, looking at engines and up grades waiting for the first race, really keeping an eye out for Sael.

He wasn't hard to spot when he got there. Money, real money, had a way of attracting attention. She was dancing, mashed happily between the bodies of a man and woman into each other and arousing the titillating jealousy of a third, than really with her. She watched him searching for a few minutes and then disentangled herself, the two mashing together instantly. She grabbed a drink as she made her way in his direction with a smirk. He had a few hangers on, in their strings and bits of clothes, they were revealing too much to really draw his interest, they would be all too easy, and Sael liked to conquer from all she'd researched.

She walked right up to him, sliding her arms around him his neck, her nose and lips almost touching his, "There you are. That took forever, there was a line." She saw several faces fall, and after they had pressed their skin and bits into the crowd she laughed and removed her arms, stepping back to stand in front of him. She pushed a hand through her mess of braids and wavy black and purple hair so it would fall back over her leather clad shoulder, "Hope you don't mind. Looked like one of them was eying your," She swept her eyes over his look and gave him a devilish half smile. "Pocket book."

She took a pretended drink from the plastic up and gave him another look, "Come on, the first race is about to start." She reached down and took his hand, pulling him along through the press of the crowd toward the front to get a good look at the start line as well as the large projected screens that would show clips of hacked traffic cams and the progression of the race.

She let go of his hand when they got somewhere comfortable. She glanced at him over her shoulder, "I wasn't sure you'd actually come." She looked back a the rev of engines, and the drop of a flag. The cars flashed by and she turned with their progression so she was facing him again.

"You didn't call," She arched a brow in mock accusation, "So now I'm left wondering if I need to be on my best behavior or not. As I recall in the employment packet, fraternizing is frowned upon."

Ara

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Re: The Oldest Fires
« Reply #61 on: December 24, 2014, 10:56:24 am »

Jason tapped the letter and envelope in his hand against his open palm.  No new ideas were generated, but he felt comforted by the small, predictable sound.  Ultimately, he set the paper down, and reached for his phone.   

The capital letters scrawled on the paper held a menacing tone.  He typed out a text message to Sael. "Where are you?" Although he didn't expect an immediate answer, he felt better for the action.  It was time to circle the wagons even if he didn't quite know why.

He was surprised when his phone actually rang.  His office phone was redirected here, but he couldn't tell who was calling.  He chose to answer, "This is Jason."


There was a split second of panic when he answered. Some part of her had been sure that he wouldn't, that she would get an answering machine. He couldn't still be at his office, could he? "I got the flowers." She was grateful that she didn't start with an 'um'. Her fingers tightened on the steering wheel, pulling up to a stoplight. "Thank you." It came out naturally, in place of too many questions. The first of which might have been what he was apologizing for. He had been entitled to bouts of bad behavior at his own father's funeral and even if they had met under better circumstances, he didn't exactly owe her any more kindness. Her thumb tapped at the leather bound wheel. "Did you have a restaurant in mind?"

The surprise of hearing Em on the phone kept him from a smug 'you're welcome'.  He needed to sit when she actually accepted his invitation.  Jason pulled a bar stool over as he admitted, "Actually, I never made it that far."

He thought he heard the sound of a motor.  "You're not talking on your phone while you're driving are you?  It's against the law here, you know." Not to mention unsafe.  "I can send more flowers with directions in the morning if this is a bad time to talk."


She smiled and shook her head to herself. He was lecturing her about driving safety? "I'm hands free. 10 and 2." She promised. "And stuck at a light. You're not still working are you? I thought I was staying late.." Emmeline trailed. If he was at the office she would have to seriously consider working longer, though she wouldn't admit he influenced her.


Was he working?  He definitely held something work related in his hand – or was it…a new dynamic that the letters were personal entered his head briefly.  He quietly filed the thought away for further contemplation. 

“I’m home.” The plate beside him was growing cold.  The room seemed empty.  His fingers clenched on the phone as he struggled for more to say.  “Just arrived a few minutes ago.  Had to stay and talk to sales – and agree to golf of all things.”  He wondered if she could hear his eye roll. “It’s hard to adjust to everybody else’s hobbies.” And have no real life. 

He picked up the fork and started pushing the potatoes around on the plate.  “What kept you so late?”


Emmeline smiled at mention of gulf and that tone. It was familiar. It was Jason. She suddenly felt awkward, like she was dabbling in memories she aught to leave alone. She was picking at a wound, wasn't she? Hers and maybe his.

"I'm a slow reader." She smiled because it was far from true. "Fortunately no one has asked me to golf yet." Of all the things she had tried in life, golf had not been one of them. Tennis, squash, riding, badminton, football, sure. But not golf. It occurred to her that she should learn before someone did ask. "I should be flattered that you made room for me in your schedule tomorrow. I'll leave picking a restaurant to you. It is your hometown after all."


And if I said we will fly to Paris, would you then pick up where we left off.

Jason leaned back against the bar and rested the paper in his hand on the polished wood.  The words 'don't ignore me' seemed to mock him.

"There was always room, Emmeline.  Don't even doubt that."

He blinked and wondered if he'd spoke aloud.  Prayed he hadn't.  He sat up straight and his tone turned to business.  "I'll send a car for you at noon.  Goodnight."  And before Jason could become more mushy and sentimental he hung up the phone.


She sat twelve seconds too long at a light freshly turned green. Her lips parted to reply but her mind was still working for words when he hung up. She pressed the gas and started down the street. No turning back. She exhaled in the near silence of her car. Always room. Always.  Already she was regretting her plans to meet with him. The way a person regrets touching a hot stove top only she was still in the process of reaching. Still reaching, knowing it'll hurt, knowing she'll regret it- but reaching all the same.

Verse

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Re: The Oldest Fires
« Reply #62 on: December 24, 2014, 02:26:37 pm »
It wasn't so hard to charm the crowd here. There were the troublesome alpha males and the ready-to-be insulted sore-backs, but he'd learned to side step them a long time ago. An often patron of hormonal watering holes, Sael knew where to look for scuffles, and where to be in order to avoid them. He made sure to listen to chatter and then place his bet accordingly. At the horses he liked a little more inside know, but this was about the experience, not necessarily the win, so he'd sit back a little before trying to get tactical with his gambling.

The flight haired, dramatic boy among other boys was just about to get himself a drink when he raised his brow for twin company. Skin drew his attention so that one of his newest acquaintances could sneak up on him. He had a ready smile for her, his silver irises reflecting the vivid streaks in her braided hair as he connected his torso to the outlines of hers, making the intimacy impossibly closer. Sael prided himself in always being ready for physical contact.

"Thank you for defending the virtue of my-- book." he said and returned the glance-over. Quite a change from todays complimenting tailoring. He was swayed by this metamorphosis. Denim at this proximity usually did well to siren-sing him into a complying mood. He followed, squeezing the offered hand, pretenses at manners and coy from the office gone. "And what if I do mind? Would you then offer her comfort in her place?" Long gone.

She was pouring on the sweetness rather thick. He wished he had minded more. "Well, I'm here now." he replied and tossed a chromed eye at the departing vehicles. Exciting, this scene. "And let's keep the work talk to a minimum until I need it to get me out of a conversational whole, eh?" he said and stole her glass, taking an actual drink. "I got the red one, by the by." he said and bent a finger out from the plastic container to point at the winning ruckus. There was some cheering and some less agreeing sounds. He was up three hundred.

"So," he handed the glass back to her and looked around. "this is you? I like it." he admitted and took up his flask from the inner pocket of his jacket, lifting the mouth of it to touch his crusted blood tear on his cheek before pouring a quick tip into his lips. "so, what other trouble can we get into here?" he asked as he took her in again, top to soles. The flask and its fire returned to its cowhide home. A tall and gangly gent in his thick denim jacket came into their shared barely-privacy.

"Nice to meet, lady." Greg said, handing Sael his prize in twenties and fifties. "Seen you here, arounds." He then turned to Sael, who wore his air of not belonging. "Maybe you could get this bloke to compete, if you're looking for entertainment. Watching others win only takes you that far, after all." Greg winked at the boy with the carefully scuffed boots and expensive skincare. He knew his mark, Greg, and was used often to bring back winnings with his cunning tongue, and he had spotted Liz as the tougher of the two, hoping she'd want a cut too, once they'd bled this priced pig. Greg turned to her again. "Bet he's got a good machine." This wink was concealed, only for her. "You could make some money on him, here."

Sael laughed, innocent, loud as he stuffed the money behind a zipper. Something was off with this man, of course, but Sael wasn't scanning for this kind of deceit, not yet, and licked liquor glisten off his lips. He wasn't confident in his machine or his ability to drain its abilities in one go, but he wouldn't mind loosing either, if it got him a good soak of adrenaline. "Yeah, Lady, let's make some money on him here." Sael echoed, smirking.

Another man, known for getting what he wanted with methods no one else wanted. He had Greg under his thumb and a white grin on his sunbed tinted face. Trouble with a menthol breath. He hadn't liked when pretty-boy new had picked the right winner. High roller, sore looser. "C'mon. Let's have some fun." Either way, they were gunning for retribution. And Liz might sense that Sael's money wouldn't cut it, in the end.

Peregrine

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Re: The Oldest Fires
« Reply #63 on: December 31, 2014, 06:46:07 am »
Liz smiled darkly at his question about taking the other girls place, shrugging in a coy way, not dismissing the idea, but not submitting to it either.

She raised a brow at his admission to liking "her", and swirled the contents of the cup.

"This is only another piece." She said gesturing slightly at the surroundings. "It wouldn't be much... fun, if I was to easy, would it?" If he only knew. The biggest piece of her was dark and dangerous, but mostly deadly. He didn't want work talk, he wanted trouble.

Emerald eyes sparkled, "Trouble can be made if it can't be found."

She raised the glass as if she was going to take a drink, but it was bumped out of her hand and to the ground as someone came to offer-up their lost wages to Sael. She flicked the sticky from her hand and glared lightly at the man as he mentioned having seen her around. She pursed her lips and gave him a 'So?' look before he turned to Sael.

She watched the exchange, sizing the man up in a few short moments. His kind never did like losing to Sael's kind. Part of her couldn't blame it. Sael didn't just loose a weeks worth of wages, and he didn't need it either. When Greg turned back to her, she pushed her hands down in her pockets, pushing the edge of her jeans down, exposing the very top of what might be a tattoo. "I don't know. I've seen his bike, it's nice, but I doubt he'd want to race it here."

Greg glanced back at Sael, not sure if she was kidding. He looked back at her, "Ya, but I've seen your bike. You've raced loads."

Liz shrugged, "Wasn't my intention tonight."

Sael goaded it on, with his mirrored comment and she sighed and rolled her eyes as if it was a chore to race. "Fine." Greg perked up, "The race it between me and him and you can bet on whomever you think will win." His face muddled for a moment but then he looked at her with a smirk and nodded. He had seen her race. "Go get us on the lists." Greg nodded and walked away.

Liz stepped up to Sael again, closing the gap in a deliberate way. She had seen his bike, she'd seen him ride it too when she'd followed him a time or two. He was good. She was better. Though, she reasoned she had to be in her line of work.

She smirked, "You wanted trouble. Now you have to decide if you think you'll beat me. Keeping in mind if you take anymore of his money he'll probably break... something."

She slid her hands into her back pockets as she glanced around and then back up at him through her lashes, "So, care to make a different sort of wager?"

She smiled at his nod, mischief in her eyes. "I hoped so. I'll make it a good one. If I you loose, no more dancing around it, you hire me. And if you win, well... I'll let you decide." She let someone bump her and she bumped him without moving away. She made a show of glancing at his mouth then back up at his silver eyes, "Best go get your bike."

She smiled as she stepped back, nibbling on her bottom lip, and she melted into the crowd before she turned to make her way back to her bike, dropping the coy look and taking a deep breath. She made her way to the line up and pushed her kickstand down, pulling out her helmet. Greg came up to her as she was checking the lines of her bike. Not that she needed to, but Sael hadn't made up here yet, and it was always good to check.

"I just put a cool thousand pounds on you. You better win."

Liz looked up at him with a half bored, half deadly glare. "No wonder money bleeds out of your pockets if you bet on people you aren't sure of."

He ground his teeth, "You'll get a cut of course."

Liz laughed and turned back to her bike. "He can't be better than you."

She looked up at him, "He could be."

Greg shook his head, "Not when you really want to win. I've seen it." She shrugged and pulled a wrench from the compartment under the seat and adjusted something. "You'll win."

She didn't dignify any of his comments and eventually he told her he'd see her at the finish line. She finished the minor adjustment and zipped her jacket up, tied her hair back and tucked it down her collar and swung a leg over the bike. She was pulling her helmet into her lap as Sael pulled up next to her.

She smirked and pulled her helmet on, she could see lipstick behind his ear. She gestured with her chin before she pulled the strap tight, "For good luck I suppose?" Her eyes narrowed playfully, "You're going to need it." She slapped the visor down and cranked her bike to life. It roared underneath her and she turned her face forward.

A stiletto and bikini clad girl came up to the line and held up a flag. Liz rolled her shoulders, revved her engine and leaned forward, balancing on her toes. 

She smiled at the sound of tires squealing as the flag dropped and they took off. Then she blocked it all out. The sound, the lights, people. All there was was focus and precise control of a barely controllable machine between her legs as she sped through the streets.

She kept Sael within a few bike lengths, whether behind or ahead of her. She didn't want it to be too obvious that she was going to beat him. She even made a show of swerving to miss a car and let him over take her for a good three blocks as they were nearing the finish. But she didn't let it last.

She took the last turn tight and close to the ground, her knee almost skimming the asphalt as she cut in front of him and righted herself. She opened the throttle and barreled to the finish, letting off just before they got there, so she beat him only by a spokes length.

When she came to a stop, she could feel the fierce heat pouring off her engine and the tingle of a sweat and adrenaline sliding down her spine. She pulled her helmet off and shook her hair free again, yanking the zipper open on her jacket. She got off her bike and stepped quickly over to Sael before too many people wanted to talk to her about the race or her bike.

Again, she invaded a personal space bubble, a grin on her face, her chest pumping rapidly with the excitement. "Good race, Mr. Orville. Or do you prefer Sir?" She perked a brow with a playful smile. "Though, we're not in the office yet and the nights still young. More trouble or had your fill?"
« Last Edit: December 31, 2014, 08:00:19 am by Peregrine »

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Re: The Oldest Fires
« Reply #64 on: December 31, 2014, 05:02:33 pm »
She was maneuvering effortlessly in this environment. Sael watched her interact with Greg the scholar. It all ended in a far more interesting way than Sael had anticipated. With liquor still on his tongue he laughed, delighted when she suggested bodily harm as his price, should he win. "How's he going to catch me if I'm that much faster than he thought?" he asked, going over the things his mechanic had said about tonight's bike. Everything was new, chrome. Might not be performing at its best. Troubles of the rich. But he also had the most stuffed into his machine out of all these people. As always, it would come down to his driving.

He liked to think that he knew well her enough to gage her skill on the streets, but he didn't even know what kind of vehicle she rode. The burn on his tongue continued to fuel his ego. This wasn't a competition in that sense, it was an adventure. He liked the challenge, and the wager she offered. That meant her night-worn persona would always be present in the office, whether she mentioned it or not. An offer of sorts, to connect the two women of the same name he'd met today. "What's to say I don't fire you right away, if I loose?" It was his way of agreeing to her terms.

Sael placed his own bet after a little chatting with a lady that had been extra handsy with Greg upon the first wager. Sael had no illusions of that he'd seduced Greg's faithful girlfriend, but knew her information was as good as that of any long term friend of the money-holder. A little tightness that had felt more real with Liz earned him a pit of lipstick and a few numbers. He stacked his cash accordingly and placed bets in two names with three different holders.

Sael tapped the visible kiss behind his ear when Liz noticed and winked. "Could have been you." he teased and then hid it all behind his helmet. He was going full out in the saddle of course, taking risks because of the inebriation, which somehow improved his time according tot he dashboard. At an instance he swerved, a critical moment, quietly promising to leave his body thrashed against brick by the next half second. Liz bumped him as she passed him, restoring his balance and fortifying his pride, at least outwardly. It gave rise to as much gratitude as it did anger in him. He'd look back and prefer a subtle dagger to his ego over the weeks or months in hospital, though.

Greg got his time to gloat when an excited Sael pulled off his helmet next to Liz and her triumphant bike. The man's glee laster for exactely thirty seconds before three other holders came with double the cash Sael had lost. Sael had business in his blood, and knew someone like Greg would feel bothered as long as Sael walked away with a heavier inner pocket. Sael could deal with a loss from Liz, but he'd not give Greg the satisfaction. The younger of the two men parked his bike an alley and Liz followed him, hinting at danger when it came to fooling men like Greg.

"Don't tell me you're afraid, road warrior." Sael said inside a snicker as he rolled his helmed against the locked wheel of his bike. Perhaps the corruption of his affluence shone through more than he liked, then, with his nonchalance toward the expensive machine. "And I think we both know I haven't had my fill of trouble." he responded, looking for his flask in the pocked bloated with dirty bills. "'sides," he said and wrapped an assumptive arm around her. Theatrics for the guests also visiting the mouth of the alley. He pointed at them with the opened vial before he took a swig. "I think trouble's here whether we want it or not."

Sael thought he did rather well. He pushed her back in way he'd describe as valiant rather than rough, to keep her away from the first punch thrown by the handful of men spear-headed by Greg. The flask cut up a face far less fair than Sael's and then his designer boots found someone else's toes. His best accomplishment was a cross, cutting an ambitious swing from a chunky fellow. All three targets were down for a while, but not really out. In the skirmish by trash bins and litter Sael found himself floored soon.

Liz's silhouette seemed to move quickly then. He couldn't really decipher what happened through the shapes bleeding into eachother, both in integrity and color, but it looked as though she was formidable and fast. Sael woke up, hanging on her, his arm caught on her other side as they made their way to a place she said was near-by. When he laughed it tasted like blood. "Didn't know you were the kind of girl to take her job home with her." he said. "I could have taken them all if I wasn't so... sleepy." he assured her with a cackle that hurt his ribs.

Eventually they did make it to her apartment. He looked up at the building and nodded din approval as he held on to her, even though he could have walked himself for a few blocks now. "So, if I go up with you, can I see the rest of your tattoos?" he asked coyly, licking crusted blood from the corner of his mouth. "It's part of the interview, you know, nothing personal, I have to be thorough." There was a clear swirl in his silver irises, a streak of courage or charm or both, depending on her own eyes. Sael knew how to use a stupor to his advantage. He'd done his best work drunk. "I'll even let you take advantage of me, if you have to."

Peregrine

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Re: The Oldest Fires
« Reply #65 on: December 31, 2014, 11:59:44 pm »
She'd hoped she'd warned him off from pissing on the wrong people, but a lifetime of privilege and thrill seeking had won out as she saw him stuff the cash in his coat.

She was far from afraid and smirked a little. Fights got her blood going. She did let him act gallant, at this juncture he deserved a little of what was coming, in her estimation. But she wasn't being paid to let the Orville boys be beat to a pulp or killed by street thugs, she needed him alive to gain the position and access she really needed.

After he'd given and taken a good few blows and looked thoroughly muddled she didn't give the three men warning before she stepped between them and him and dispatched them. A few swift punches, and a boot she brought down over the jaw/shoulder of the last big man, knocking him to the ground. It was easier than she hoped. She liked a a better fight. She stood over a groaning Greg. "Don't touch the bikes, or I'll know. I know who you owe money, 'Greg'" he nodded and groaned again.

Liz walked over and hoisted Sael up, pulling his arm over her shoulder and wrapping her arm around his waist supporting his weight. "Good thing I don't live terribly far," she muttered. Eight blocks through shortcuts.

She rolled unseen eyes at his comment about work, "You don't know me so well yet." Her work came home with her quite often, in all sorts of ways. "Sure tiger," she added to his comment about taking the men. "You softened them up enough I was able to talk them down."

He approved of her building, of course he did, it was nice but not too rich. No doorman, but good security and clean. She turned her head at his question. She pulled herself together, the persona back in place.

Her eyes sparkled with their own mischief, "Most likely." She shifted his weight and pulled out her keys. She grinned at him, "If you stick around long enough. I don't sleep with much on." She looked away, her keys sliding easily into locks. "But fair's fair, you'll have to show yours."

She took a quick minute to think about her apartment before she opened the doors, nothing was out of place in the sparsely decorated place. She led him through the combined kitchen and open living room into the bed room and set him down on the edge of the bed.

She smiled, pulling her jacket off and dropping it next to him. The back of her purple t-shirt was slashed more than the front, edges of at least one more tattoo peaking through. She walked back out to the fridge and opened the freezer, pulling out an ice pack. She wrapped a towel around it and walked back in to him and put it gently on his face.

"Keep that on your face." She walked into the bathroom flicking on a switch. When she came back out she had a compact first aid kit. She set it on the bed, popping it open and cleaned up a few of the minor cuts, her knees resting on the edge of the bed. She moved the ice from his eye and tisked, "Nothing you need to go to hospital for, but that's gonna be pretty nasty in the morning. Should be mostly gone by the time we go back to the office Monday."

She poked his ribs gently and then smiled a little at his squirming, "There's also blood on your shirt and I think your ribs are bruised." She poked him again smirking, "It's what you get for playing Prince Charming." She moved the ice from his face to his ribs, keeping her hand on the pack. "Now, am I calling you cab or going for your bike?..." She let a brow raise. "We both know you didn't just follow me up here to trade tales of ink. Which I can deal with, here or at the office, but can you?"

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Re: The Oldest Fires
« Reply #66 on: January 01, 2015, 01:30:02 pm »
Her place looked simple, but not cheap. Sael tried to weigh her by the appearance of her decor. At first it seemed normal, but the more he looked through one good and one swelling eye, the more he detected a lack of commitment in choice of furniture. The assembly of usable surfaces seemed almost an imitation of a real home. She moved like she would find her way here in the dark. In control. It felt deeper then an apt sense of location. He got the feeling this place was just a tool to her. Perhaps that was to be expected from someone as successful like her, that hadn't relied on blood and last name for her position.

The boy waited obediently on the bed, reveling in the gravitation of physical punishment that finally caught up with him. He was grateful to be sitting. When she came again she pulled him out of his recouping trance. The good eye widened with the rush of nurturing chill that came through the towel as she pressed the dressed ice to his abused socket. His hand locked it into place as he sighed to expel some of the awakening pain that danced around the edge of that releasing numbness.

When we come back on monday.

She was his employee now, contract or not, or he was not a man of his word. Like he would ever trust the people he'd interviewed over someone who'd tended to his wounds, anyway. "Will you still respect me in the morning, when my face is half beastly, and half beauty?" he joked, smiling with the good side of his mouth. That bravado faltered when she took ice to the side of his torso. He swallowed a hiss. Sael wasn't a stranger to the nurturing of others. Something about him was always lost, it was as clear in his angry belligerence as it was in his frustrated, quiet beaconing. He ventured it would let him touch her, so he reached around her as she nursed his ribs, his fingers parting a tear in her shirt to where he'd seen ink, so he could try and feel its pattern despite not seeing it from her front.

He thought about his bike when she mentioned it, and about the cab. It would be a delightfully charged ride, wouldn't it, after his first good night back, packed with adventure. A lovely round-off to a perfect little ordeal. He had scars of battle and they would have something to smile over, past their computer screens in the office, and no one else would know. It would be more than enough, a tattoo on his memory, when he sampled the neon night with his assistant. Yes, it would be enough. The chrome took in Liz with all the intention of accepting her sending him home.

"You'll learn I always take on more than I can deal with." he replied, and didn't even have the shame to roll his eyes at himself. The hand on her back pulled downward until that rip in her shirt tore and widened, his body bending into the ice she pressed to him, his marred face closer to her perfect one. "How about you, though?" he said as his weighed, almost fanged smile contradicted all the things in him that begged him to be bigger than the moment, to be stronger than her perfume. "Would you know what to call me, if I pay your salary and occupy your bed?"

It was a compromising notion. Perhaps she would take offense and reject him with whatever vengeance a woman with such intimate knowledge of wounds had to offer, or she would let it be the joke that it was and let the kiss happen. He felt inclined to find out the outcome either way. His hand on her back pulled that purple strip free from her shirt as his lips closed over hers and drew to make the contact firmer. The pain in his swelling cheekbone darted out to tense his tongue. It would serve to make the kiss more severe as he put the weight of his body on hers.

This was an idiotic play. Sael Orville didn't know any other way this could have played out.

Peregrine

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Re: The Oldest Fires
« Reply #67 on: January 02, 2015, 03:00:15 am »
She let him kiss her, even played into it for a few long lingering minutes, wrapping fingers up into the carelessly styled hair before she pulled away.

She smirked and pushed harder on the icepack against his ribs, pushing him back to lay on the bed. "I'm a easy date, but I'm not that easy." She gave him a devilish half grin, and another peck, "So come Monday we'll play our prospective parts and I'll call you Sir and you'll call me Miss Montgomery like good little corporate puppets." She disentangled herself and stood up, pushing a hand through her hair. "Now get some sleep tiger. I'll take the couch."

She walked over to her closet and with her back to him - kicked her boots off, slid out of the jeans and ripped shirt and pulled up her hair into a messy bun before she slid an over sized Oxford t-shirt on, flashing a delicately scrawled tattoo in  Latin down her spine,  and another on the back of her upper right hamstring that wrapped around into her inner thigh. She also had a compass on her inner left wrist under the wide leather bracelet she dropped in a dish in the closet, another bit of text across some ribs, and a set of roman numerals on her left hip bone he'd seen a peek of at the race.

She walked over pulling the blanket from the end of the bed with a playful grin and padded barefoot back out into the other room, flicking lights off.

The next morning the first thing that would probably wake him would be the smell of bacon. It was still early.  She smiled as she stepped out of the walk-in closet, finishing the clasp on an earring and then leaning over in the doorway as she slipped the back of her strapped stilettos in place. "Morning. Sleep alright?" Her hair was slicked back into a refined french twist, the violet hidden away, her make-up precise and appealing, the only stand out the bright red on her lips, an emerald and silk blouse that matched her eyes was tucked into a tight black pencil skirt.

She straightened and walked over and her eyes narrowed as she gently prodded around his cheek and eye, "Not so terrible this morning." She straightened and walked into the bathroom and dropped her locket over her head and was tucking it way under her shirt as she walked out again, "Your bike is in the garage under the building and there are fresh towels in the bath. There's also left over bacon in the pan, and I started the coffee maker, cream is in the icebox, or your welcome to get yourself something else." She'd gone out and gotten both bikes after she was sure he was asleep, as well as leaving a dead dropped update for her contact about her progress.

She adjusted the long chain of her necklace and tugged a little on her collar, concealing it, "You are certainly welcome to make yourself at home, but I've got to run and I don't know how long I'll be. It seems the merger paperwork has come back again so Mr. Lewis thinks we need to work on a Sunday." She shrugged and walked back over to the closet pulling out a tailored suit jacket and slipped it on before walking over to her dresser to put on her watch and pick up her slim black purse. "And since I'm still officially his assistant, duty calls.." She walked back over and scooped up one set of keys and her phone from the nightstand next to the bed and dropped them in the purse.

She kissed his good cheek, then wiped a little at it with her thumb. "Last night was... different. Maybe we'll get to do it again sometime. Not the bit where you end up bruised, but I think  it's only fair I give you a shot at getting whatever it was you were hoping to win." She smiled mischievously then looked around to see if there was anything else she needed. Her eyes came back around to him with a smile at the corners, she gestured at the second set of keys with her eyes, "Lock up if decide to leave would you? Now I've really got to go."

With that she turned on a heel and they tapped lightly as she walked across the hardwood to head out the door.

Beau

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Re: The Oldest Fires
« Reply #68 on: January 16, 2015, 07:16:46 am »
Jason went to bed and listened for the sound of Sael’s motorcycle.  He didn’t know how long he lay awake under the down comforter, but at some point he must have dozed off.  The sound of a door opening woke him.  Jason opened one eye as he heard the faint creek of metal on metal, and the glide of the closet door.

Wait. Closet?

There was no earthly reason his closet should be opening itself.  The only light came in from the moon and that was dim and shielded by curtains.  Still, Jason could clearly see the movement of the sliding doors as they pushed to one side and revealed the darkness within the closet.

He didn’t have a gun under his pillow.  No stray butter knife from a midnight snake lay on the nightstand. So, Jason kept his body as still as he could even though his breathing wasn’t quite as regular as it had been. His mind refused to work properly, frozen on the idea of watching rather than moving muscles into action.  Only his eyes followed the shadowy form that emerged from the closet and tiptoed out the door. 

Jason let out the breath he was holding as the connecting door to the hall closed.  After a moment he rose from the bed.  He found some sliver of courage to peak into the hall and listen.  He was rewarded with the creek of the stair and the conclusion that whoever it was, was leaving.  Another moment and the front door clicked as Jason leaned over the railing straining for a better view of who it might have been.  He turned and went to the window on the landing, but no car started, and no headlights offered more illumination of the driveway below.

No alarm.

His barefeet made no sound as he went downstairs and looked around.  The hour must have been late because he didn’t see or hear any staff.  Since his father’s death he’d reduced the support at the house by half, but there still were a handful of non-family members who lived on the grounds.  Now he was thankful for the presence of others even if they were sleeping.

Jason retraced his steps up the stairs.  Was I dreaming?  The lack of alarm almost made him think so, but the open closet door in his room defied reason.  As he’d done every night for twenty years, Jason closed the door firmly and went back to bed.  He knew he wouldn’t sleep but he tried to rest anyway, eyes ever present on the closet door.

At breakfast he talked to the staff as discretely as he could.  Casual inquiry revealed that Sael had not come home last night.  Jason finished his toast and coffee and loaded his briefcase.  He’d take the car into work and try not to worry about where his brother was, or who he might be with.


Ara

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Re: The Oldest Fires
« Reply #69 on: January 20, 2015, 01:41:12 pm »
Emmeline had tried to look for her own apartment since she arrived in London but Grant wouldn't hear it. He had made a habit of canceled her orders, inquiries, and plans as though they were her own. What was most infuriating was how everyone in this city seemed to bend to his command. He thought it was important that she stay at the family house. He liked asking her about the office when he saw her at home.

She came down the stairs in the morning to the ruckus of screaming boys and desperate nannies. It seemed to be a daily struggle, to wake, dress, feed, reclean, and usher them out the door and to their schools.

She came down the hallway, wearing grey tailored slacks and a vest to match that pulled at her waist like a corset, a cream top beneath with buttons open down her neck and collar. She was wearing pearls today.

Miss Nathaniel came into the kitchen. It gleamed in the morning and enticed with the smell of fresh coffee. When she walked in there were platters of fruit, pancakes, and muffins set out on the tiled bar. The chef was moving about the kitchen in his white coat. He gave her a smile and a nod. She greeted him in french. It was his native tongue as it was hers and they exchanged nicities if only to hear the sound of home.

He had her vanilla latte in a thermos, ready to go.

Grant Nathaniel turned the page of the paper in his old hands, sitting at a table in the corner of glass walls, drinking his smoothie and eating his egg. He was on a strict diet these days, desperate to cling to what years he had left. He would eat his weight it garbage if it would buy him just one more day. “Leaving already?” He asked. No good mornings or smiles were wasted between them.

“I like to be one of the first in. It gives some of them the illusion that I sleep there.”

He smiled a little at the paper he scrutinized.

“Where's Hannah?” Emmeline asked, taking a sip of her latte and resisting the muffins, walking away from them and toward the hallway she'd come from.

“Yoga or something equally absurd.” He muttered dismissively.

Emmeline smiled because he wasn't looking and inclined her head respectfully before leaving him to his paper. Hannah was out getting stretched but Emmeline doubted it involved leggings and a mat. She'd seen that guilty look before and the nervous way her nannies would answer when she asked where the lady of the house was. Grant had either grown slow in his old age and didn't notice or he just didn't care anymore.

Emmeline didn't know him well enough to guess which.

She made her way down the hall and to the front door. The butler opened it with his usual glare. He didn't like her and she had yet to care enough to find out why.

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Re: The Oldest Fires
« Reply #70 on: January 25, 2015, 09:48:58 pm »
He had all the intention in the world to decline her offer of letting him have the bed. The scripture on her body tied his tongue just enough that he would not protest. He especially liked the one traveling toward the inside of her leg. He wondered if this affect her choice of skirts, and leggings. He should make an effort to notice at the office. When she was out the door, and he had his opportunity to follow her and usher her back, so he could take the couch instead, he fell asleep. Perhaps it had been a good thing she'd not let him go further.

All the usual tell-tale tingling woke him up in a little jingle, playing over his face and taking up a chorus on the side of his ribcage. He wasn't so aware that he knew to be grateful for the lack of chemical buzz in his headache. Recovering for a few minutes, he took in the surroundings, his sensory input soon swelled with the fried scent adding to the familiarity. He smiled as sat up, yesterdays clothes still on as he tried to keep his hair back. She was well put together, which worked as a strong contrast to himself. had he slept well?

"Like I was beat up." he replied and stayed still for her examining his eye. For now the marks of yesterday were appealing to his vanity rather than bothering it. Perhaps they would look out of place once he got a suit on. He watched her quietly as she got ready, listening to her suggestions, instructions. He got up to walk her to the door. "Again then." he said at her suggestion and then winked. The door closed and he looked back at the apartment. So this was what it felt like? Usually he was the first one out the door.

The bacon was good, though a bit cold now, and he did get himself some coffee. Despite her dishwasher he chose to clean his plate by hand. Somehow that was more personal. Sael didn't linger long. "Wow. obviously you're hired." he mumbled once he got down to the bike. He liked the look of their vehicles standing together. They'd had their own little adventure. How had Liz gotten both of them back? He snickered as he got on top and starting his machine.

He hurried in through the door that connected the garage to the main house. He felt pour of his bedhair. He imagined it was a little like a dog is proud of its dirty coat after a day of play. He was in time to catch a conversation between his brother and a staff member. Sael pulled up a slither of prosciutto. "No, I was in-fact no home last night." He always imagined applause when admitting to things like that, the staff did not cater to his fantasy. He looked over his brother, who looked appropriately dapper. Somehow Jason's clean cut appearance did not bother his younger brother today. "Why? Did something happen?" He meant at work, but something in Jason's eyes made him omit the last addition in the question.

It might be endearing to the staff, to see the youngest master in his usual garb, a little more out of place and out of seam than usual, take his breakfast between his fingers while talking to the current elder of the Orville home. He did not worry himself with ghosts or silent burglars. Yet.

Beau

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Re: The Oldest Fires
« Reply #71 on: January 26, 2015, 10:49:21 pm »
There was a certain stillness about Jason’s movements as he closed the briefcase.  His thumb circled over the lock, snapping it shut decisively.  His eyes seemed to be mesmerized by the shiny brass fixtures as he absorbed the implications behind his brother’s words.  Jason did his best to control his expression.  The wry smile which lifted his lips his own defense mechanism.

“Good morning,” was uttered tonelessly.   

Staff scurried about the kitchen eager to serve the young master.  Jason didn’t move.  For a moment there was a silent debate about altering his schedule to ride into the office with Sael in the limo.  Em hadn’t said where she was going last night, and he was afraid to hear the answer wasn’t ‘home.’  He wanted to believe she wouldn’t fall for Sael’s charm, but he’d seen too much the contrary.

“Perhaps this afternoon we can meet and discuss a few things?”  Now he did look up, a hint of frost in his gaze as he surveyed Sael’s rumpled form.  If he kept things business he’d keep his cool. Sael was no more than a cog in the machine.  “I have an opening from 3-4 this afternoon if it suits you.”

He adjusted his tie and moved towards the exit.   The car was outside waiting and Jason took his usual place in the back.

The driver asked, “Would you like the paper, sir?”

Jason shook his head.  Belatedly he realized the man wasn’t looking his way, so he uttered a brief, “No,” before he sat back against the fine grain leather and stared blankly out the window.

The morning passed with the same sort of robotic haze.  At odd moments he tried to reassure himself that Em had accepted his invitation.  But, he wasn’t used to being ‘seconds’ and it ate at him.   He remembered his pledge to send a car to her office.  At the appointed time he gave the driver cryptic directions and said he’d meet him at the final destination.  Jason had a plan, and he’d follow through – but his hopes of an easy reconciliation were no more.

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Re: The Oldest Fires
« Reply #72 on: April 22, 2015, 10:57:21 pm »
Liz took a deep breath and reminded herself that she couldn't kill her almost former employer without raising suspicions. Too bad Sael hadn't demanded her immediate move to his office, then she would at least be running errands that might actually glean her the information she was being paid to collect.

Speaking of which, she was supposed to be picking up information in one of the take away bags she was on her way to get for Mr. Lewis and his "team". Not that a single one of them knew the merger documents better than her.

She'd just paid and now had three bags hung on each arm as she walked out, peering down into them to see if she could find the envelope she was supposed to remove, when she bumped into someone.

She looked up with an apology on her lips "I beg your pardon," and then a slight quirk came to her lips. "Mr. Orvill. I really need to stop running into you like this."

Internally she glared at the non-coincidental circumstances and felt irritated that her employer seemed to be tracking both of these men by someone besides herself. As if she couldn't do her job.

All of these things happened in mere seconds and she was looking over his suite, "Nothing spilt on you did it?"

She looked up at Jason and shook her head. "I do apologize again. I did want to thank you though, your brother gave me the position. I start tomorrow." Her own brow furrowed at the look on his face, more than worry over his suite, and she decided to lay some ground work. "By the way is he alright?"

If he was surprised by her question, she plowed on, "It's just, I saw him last night. He got in a nasty fight with some men and the last I saw him, he was hanging on a very worried looking woman, clearly out of her element as she led him away from it all. He looked pretty rough."

Her phone started ringing then and she adjusted the bags to pull it out of her coat pocket. "Oh, sorry, this is Mr. Lewis- probably wondering where his lunch is." She started moving away, "I best go. Again, thank you for the recommendation and sorry about running into you, and I hope your brother is alright."

She walked away as she saw a woman stepping from an office car, it was the woman from her files, a past love interest of Jason's. She answered the call, "Hello," but paused and gave Emmeline a quick look of semi-recognition and glanced back at Jason with a look that said she recognized her and then she turned and kept walking away talking on her phone like she was talking to Mr. Lewis until she was out of ear shot.

"I don't appreciate having you surveill my marks. If you didn't think I could do the job, you should have hired someone else."

"Only giving you some extra opportunities, and it's only some extra video and phone taps. Now review the information in the bag with a red x. We might have a problem."

The call ended.

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Re: The Oldest Fires
« Reply #73 on: April 28, 2015, 11:47:08 am »
Her morning passed quickly. Clark had arrived at the office an hour after she had, on time as always and with hot coffee from the cafe downstairs in hand. She had told him to clear her lunch. Clark didn't ask extra questions or raise a curious brow that promised he'd be gossiping later on. She had initially hired him for eye candy. Not really for herself but to make the old men in this office a little uncomfortable and the women hate her just a bit more. He had ended up being one of the best assistants she'd ever had. Already she was considering making him an offer to take him back to Paris with her when she left.

That was a ways off though. If her father had his way, she was going to have to hold this empire up until one of his sons finished school. The boys were still sticky creatures unable to finish a bowl of cereal without help. It occurred to her that that might never really change. Would they ever pour their own milk or wash a dish? She had laughed a little even though it wasn't really funny. The truth was, her father always got what he wanted and as much as she resented him, here she was, helping him with no hope of even a thank you.

It was enough to make a woman scream. She was sifting through files and papers, trying to trim the fat and keep the wheels turning for a company she had no investments in. It was a waste of her time and yet here she was, far from home and surrounded by enemies.

Clark had knocked on her door to remind her that it was almost twelve. The car had been waiting for her just like Jason had said. She hadn't doubted it. If he was going to punish her it wasn't likely to be by standing her up before she was even at the restaurant. Though, standing her up would be fair, she mused when she got in.

She answered emails on her phone while they drove, still tapping away when the car stopped. She put her phone on silent while the driver rounded the car and slipped it into the pocket of her slacks just before he opened the door for her. Emmeline was barely standing on the sidewalk a full second before a woman was looking her over. She raised one eyebrow. A familiar face but no one she knew. Her mouth quirked in a curious smile, not sure if she should be offended or flattered by the unwarranted attention before following the preoccupied woman's gaze when she looked back.

Emmeline's amusement wore at the edges of her mouth. It was hard to remember that this Jason Orville was the evolution of the one she had known. He looked so severe where he stood, occupying a portion of sidewalk, strangers moving around him but never daring to enter his personal space. He looked important and she remembered clearly a time when he had been. More important than almost anyone else. Almost.

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Re: The Oldest Fires
« Reply #74 on: April 28, 2015, 08:11:02 pm »
Things are like this to things that are like Sael. He’d not meant to show kindness, or softness, but he realized in front of his cold brother that he had not been asinine either. It wasn’t really fair to expect the brother big to always follow brother prodigal in his mood. It still stung and hardened the wilder of the Orville trees, and it set a bit deeper there, on the floor. He drank a glass of juice he’d been provided, reflective eyes peering at Jason over the tipped rim like Sael might look at someone who’d shouldered him in a party line. Hah. Lines. He nodded as he swallowed, glands tensing with the sour. He made no face to indicate such.

“Good. Three is good.” He said as he bend down to put the half empty, yes, glass on the floor, like some sacrifice or other, solid gesture. “Might do some research from home until then.” He said and left the room.

He threw off his clothes, tossed them under the bed and left them there like yesterday. Only yesterday was fonder. It wasn’t an anger that would last long, but Sael could justify it for as long as he had it. It was a gift that he had, to burn a grudge brightly. Stepping in to his black joggers, he’d already forgotten the reason for his current outburst, and was now only reveling in the intensity of it as he pulled a likeminded tank top on his painted torso. With some flailing, childish rage he took the new wraps, served up in his showerroom, and wound them around his hands. Too hard, would stop blood flow. He didn’t have the sense to redo them as he looked for other outlets. This could only lead one place.

His slight was holy, so he went to an altar. Fathers gym. The door was well oiled even though it looked like it would creak. Smaller than it should be, it was put in one of the rooms that had been picked before bright lights and mirrors were the norm. A leather boxing bag in a chin that was sprinkled with flat rust. A ring. Benches. Dumbells. Even the belligerent boy slowed down in here, reminded by chill in the room that this was not just a place for exercise, but a bed for father’s efforts. Mr. Orville had panted in this room, brought himself to the limit. Sael wanted to punish the bag and measure his strength with his idol. He wanted to lift the largest bell.

In the end he stayed in the silence as he went for the rope, the newest one hanging on nails on the wall. He quietly danced as he spun a bubble of it around himself. If he had meant not to go on the three o’clock meeting, he knew he had to attend now.