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Nicanora
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PostPosted: Mon May 02, 2016 3:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

1 May 2016

"I'm gonna be carrying you home by the end of the night, aren't I?"

"More durable than I look," he told her with only the slightest slur in his speech. "Fire and lead couldn't do it. Doubt the liquor will."

Her patience was too worn to humor his self-deprecation. "Really? Really?"

"I'll regret this is the morning." It was quite the lucid statement from a man well beyond drunk, edged with an unabashed truth that did nothing to flatter any perceptions how durable he might have been on the inside. "But right now I'm just gonna be sad and angry and bitter with the world about losing my friend and not give a f***."

"That's not what tonight was supposed to be about for the Angel's ****ing sake." She tossed her hands up. On the way down she caught another drink from a server. One, not two. No sharing with the already drunk paramedic. "But whatever. Wallow. I'm gonna take a walk."

"Angels ****ing makes abominations," he blurted out suddenly, the words not his own and frighteningly lucid.

She was three steps away and far too close for that not to rake a cold shiver down the curve of her spine. Turning back to him, she took a step and a half back toward him. "Yeah, you've had enough to drink."

Defiant always, Will reached for another drink and promptly swallowed it down. "Now I've had enough." He started to wobble his way towards the way home. Or what he thought was the way home. Or wherever wasn't here.

Grip tightened around her glass but before she could go breaking it, she swallowed its contents and gave the empty away. Then and only then did she stalk after the medic. "That was mature. Are you going to be an asshat the rest of the night?"

"No. If you're coming home with me, I plan on being a vagina hat too."

"I'm not coming home with you. I'm making sure you make it back to your place and then I'm going back to mine." Once she caught up, she pressed forward further until she was half a step ahead of him, the angle of her annoyance lost to her lead.

"Don't mind me. Go do what you gotta do. Bye, Felicia." The drunken paramedic veered off towards the right, away from her. Home might be that way.

Her steps stuttered to a stop and she turned around to stare after him as he deviated course. Jaw worked to keep it from falling ajar, her lips falling into deepset frown. Did he just? He did. Obvious conflict scrawled itself across her expression only so long as it took for annoyance and anger to override them, tamping down the dreaded feels in favor of a flippant gesture of her hand. "Fine. Bye." For all that she wanted to leave, she stood there watching his path.

Pride got him outside of her line of sight eventually, where he promptly keeled over in some bushes and started hurling. He knew he shouldn't have had all that Juana Burrito before coming...

She was vaguely aware that once he went out of view that she had lifted onto her toes, like she was primed to give chase. That chase never came though and she fell back on her heels, turned a precise about face, and found the closest exit she could to escape the glen's clearing.

The world spun. Two different pieces of music warred in his head and made everything turn on end. The paramedic toppled into the bushes and out of sight.

Nica was left to her anger and some twisting feeling that she couldn’t quite give a name to. It unsettled her gut and heated her skin against the late night springtime chill. There was a war of logic versus emotion raging through her veins with each step that took her further and further from the revels of Beltane. Will was grieving, she couldn’t fault him for that, but she wanted to be so angry with him, with everyone. She was not a fan of the universe at the moment, to say the least. The city drew her back, calling her to the darker streets of Old Temple and then eventually Dockside. They were familiar paths that she took often to get to the sort of clubs that pulsed bass heavy electronic music well into the early hours of the morning. She could blow off steam, dance until her legs felt like wet pasta, and go home to sleep off the haze that had settled over her mind thanks to the influence of a little too much feywine.

Damn Faeries.

Angels ****ing make abominations.

“What the f*** does that even mean?” She asked the cool night air. He didn’t mean her kind, did he? They weren’t angels despite their blood but their creation was a complicated and convoluted story that she had never offered to explain in full to the paramedic. Were they abominations? By some schools of thought, they might have been. No, he couldn’t have meant herself and her ilk. But if he didn’t, why would he bother saying such a thing?

The pretty, plastic smile she gave the club’s doorman was enough to get her in without a flash of identification. She sauntered in like she owned the place. By this hour, it reeked of sweat and spilled alcohol, the mass of undulating bodies in the middle of the dance floor doing more than enough to propagate the stench. Once she got a drink in her hand, she went to join them, moving gracefully among the roiling tangle of arms and legs and swaying torsos. Technicolor strobe lights turned the sheen of perspiration on their skin into rainbow diamonds, fracturing light in hazy tangents that cleaved starshine paths through fog machine smoke. It didn’t take long to fall into step, the pulsing music’s beat synchronizing with her heartbeat until she couldn’t tell one from the other. Her blood felt thick in her veins, heavy with alcohol’s influence that worsened the more she injected into her system.

An hour and then two were lost to the music, broken up only by colorful shooters and their heady influence. Midway through the third and somewhere just before last call, she traded off dance partners for what she figured would be the final time that night. Ever the Rhydinian cliche of tall, dark, and handsome, he was at the very least a superb dancer. Somewhere along the way they exchanged names. Beckett. He wasn’t unnecessarily muscle bound but there was strength in the arms that wound around her and a dragging pass of her fingertips down his torso told stories of the hard lines carving definition beneath the tactilely pleasing fabric of his shirt. His eyes though, they may have been his most striking feature. An arctic blue, they were so pale that only by the club’s flashing lights could she tell that they weren’t white. It made it difficult not to stare but he accommodated her study with a curl of a subtle smile, their gaze held until he leaned down to murmur beside her ear.

Without realizing it, they had spent nearly an hour together and by the time his sibilant words touched her skin, last call was long since over and the lights were on the verge of coming up. Beckett’s cool fingers wrapped a possessive circle around her wrist to lead her through the dwindling crowd. It was like walking after getting off of a tilt-a-whirl, each step walking a fine line between balance and crashing. They were a tangle of arms and mouths as they spilled out onto the darkened Dockside street, uneven pavement and cobbles alike proving treacherous for the entangled pair. The moons above were their only source of light, painting a silvery path upon which they bobbed and wove before crashing into the worn brick of a nearby storefront. Drenched in the shadow of the building’s broad eave, hands set out on explorations of uncharted territory while lips and tongues waged a battle for dominance.

Whatever happened, he'll walk it off. We'll buy him some tea.

This was supposed to be a distraction and all she could think of was Will. Her back ended up again cold brick, making her arch away in reflex. Beckett’s mouth moved against the corner of hers, trailing a drag of lips along her jaw to the soft spot beneath her left ear.

He's fine. He'll be fine. Totally fine…

He wasn’t fine. Not Cris, not Will, not any of his friends that had mustered up the gumption to go to the Beltane fires that evening. Shae’s naming of the fallen Nephilim as her Green Man en absentia was a poetic punch to the gut. Nica could only imagine how Will would have reacted to hearing that. Luckily he had shown up just a few minutes too late.

He’s not dead.

A prick of sharp canines ripped her from her intoxicated reverie, her hands planting against the man’s chest for a firm shove backwards. It sent him back only a step before he moved forward again, caging her against the wall with a press of his arms against the worn bricks.

“What the f***?” She hissed. His eyes were almost luminescent in the dark, the moonlight silhouetting him enough that she had to squint to make out the telltale points of protruding eyeteeth. Twin beads of liquor soaked red welled to the surface of her skin, just below the curved Speak in Tongues rune on the side of her neck.

“What?” He bowed his head toward her only to be rebuked with a firm crack of her hand across his cheek. It startled a laugh out of him, low and humorless. Her hand was still lifted, posed after the follow through of the smack. She couldn’t pull it away before he once more grasped her wrist, his hold none too gentle on the second time around. “Feisty, I like it. Come now, sweetheart, it’s just a little fun. Trust me.”

“No, we’re done here.” There was a steely edge to her tone that matched the look she gave him. A testing tug of her wrist had him tightening his hold and darkening his gaze.

“On the contrary, I think we’re just getting started.” He pinned her held wrist against the wall with his full weight pressing against her. His knee separated her thighs in spite of her squirming but that didn’t keep her from bringing her left knee up for a sharp blow to his groin. Dead or not, the impact was enough to make him curl inward. Nica yanked her wrist toward his wrapped thumb to break his weakened hold and brought her quickly clenched fist down on the back of his bowed head. The vampire snarled as it dropped him to a knee but he recovered quickly enough and surged upward to grab her by the throat. He shoved her back against the brick hard enough to wind her, pushing her upwards until her toes scraped at the pavement. Hauling her up until she was eye to eye with him, he leaned in, his smile unamused and cruel. “Sweet thing, you just bought yourself a very, very long night.”

His mouth met hers in a harsh crush. She felt his tongue sweep along her bottom lip and faintly she could taste iron. Her feet kicked, ricocheting from the wall to his shins and back, doing little to dissuade him. If anything it incensed him further, his hand tightening until she couldn’t breathe. Her fingers clawed at his wrist, ripping thin skin to spill shimmering red that welled from the gouges her nails left. He snarled against her mouth and she felt a seemingly unintentional drag of fangs across the pulp of her bottom lip repay the favor when they split smeared lipstick and flesh both. The pleased thrumming in Beckett’s throat was enough to make her stomach turn. Of all the nights to be ill prepared, she found herself faced with a leech with an appetite and a disregard for consent. She had been ready for faeries, iron powder dusting her hair and a similarly composed dagger tucked away beneath the hemline of her dress. It was the closest thing she could reach while its silver twin was nestled against the outside of her right thigh. Silver, while toxic for vampires typically, wasn’t fatal either.

He’s not dead.

Her right hand relented in its futile clawing and fell limp to her side. Lack of air made her vision explode with starbursts and black spots. Her kicking slowed and her left hand fell too. Each motion, however unintentional it seemed, was a careful ploy to keep his attention away from the creeping of fingers against her thigh. The taste of her own blood was thick on her tongue but she couldn’t swallow against the grip on her throat so it pooled beneath her tongue and between her teeth and bottom lip. When she finally quit moving, Beckett gave her bottom lip one more slow suck then leaned back. His hips pinned her as did the hand around her neck but he still rocked enough to look her over.

“Going to play nice now?” He crooned, dipping his chin to lick a dribble of blood that trickled from the corner of her mouth. She jerked an awkward nod of her chin which spilled more sticky red from her swollen lips and down her chin. He began to set her down, his grip loosening just enough for her to suck in a rough gasp of air. It was enough though and as soon as her feet touched the ground she swung her right arm up, the silver dagger held in a backwards grip. It arced up caught him in the temple, sinking through the weak point. She had to wrench it to drive it fully to the hilt, sending Beckett stumbling back. Nica let go of the dagger as he fell, his caterwauling cry bouncing off the buildings along the empty street. A block away, a light turned on in an upstairs apartment. A curtain rustled then the light dimmed. They knew better than to get involved.

“On the contrary,” she snarled, descending on him with her stele in her left hand. He tried to push her off of him but even with his healing factor, shaking off a shiv to the grey matter was no easy task. As he finally yanked the dagger free, she stunned him again with punch square in the face. His head snapped back and the sweeping motions of her left etched a crisp and clean fire rune into the front of the vampire’s shirt. He screamed as the fire sprung to life, devouring papery flesh and fabric alike. Nicanora rolled free of the man just before the flames engulfed him, pausing only to rip the silver dagger from his grasp. He kicked and rolled, his anguished moans filling the air in much the same way the scent of burning flesh did. She got to her feet and looked down at him. Bloodied fingers fished her cigarettes from the side of her bra. Freeing one, she set it to her lips and leaned down just far enough for Beckett’s funeral pyre to light it for her. Straightening as she took a drag, she turned and let long legged strides carry her swiftly away from the burning vampire. Black smoke rose from the site and grey smoke trailed after the Shadowhunter’s retreat.

"He is dead."
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Nicanora
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PostPosted: Thu May 12, 2016 10:06 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

11 May 2016

On Monday she had signed the papers.

A six month lease on a one bedroom apartment in Old Temple. The Blackwaters had signed a shorter lease for a two bedroom in the same building only two floors lower than her. When discussing apartments, she and Daniel had fundamental disagreements on whether to go with the building on Rosemont Road or the building on Seacrest Street. A matter of compromise found them calling Kingston Street home for the short term. It was a turn of the century building with plenty of charm. Nica had sacrificed closet space in the agreement but that tub was to die for.

Who said she wasn’t diplomatic?

On Tuesday she had begun moving the few belongings she did have over to the new place.

Mostly clothes and a whole lot of weapons. It was neither cramped like the inn in Dragon’s Gate nor cozy like Taneth’s little cottage. The open space and the vaulted ceiling made her uneasy, like she’d never be able to properly make use of the area. When her closet was full and her weapons were either stored or stashed where she could, she spent the rest of the day Marking the place.

Protection, quiet, strength. She knew Daniel was likely two floors down doing much the same.

On Wednesday she locked herself inside.

She turned her phone to silent and ignored the numerous messages and calls that came in. Anyone who knew her knew that the day was not a good one just by date alone. Daniel had brought coffee by in the morning. He left when she refused to open the door. Niamh called, the humming buzz of her phone skittering across the floor telling her it wasn’t just a text message. Still she didn’t answer, letting it roll over to voicemail. Around noon she finally checked it.

”Ay lass… ah… ye know me ‘n’ things like this. Jus’ wanted ta let ye know I was thinkin’ of ye t’day. Oh, also t’ remind ye that ye’ve got people ‘ere fer ye if ye need us. Lemme know iffn yer needin’ anythin’. Later dove.”

“The one person that I need today isn’t here… so…,” Nica trailed off, letting her voice echo in the emptiness of hardwood floors and smooth, freshly painted drywall. While she was at it, she flipped through her text messages too.

Will St. Jude.

Daniel Blackwater.

Daniel Blackwater.

Will St. Jude.

Will St. Jude.

Niamh Kilcannon.

Will St. Jude.

Daniel Blackwater.

Gregorio Truecross.



Phoebe Altatorre.

Hola cariño. Espero que estás bien hoy. Te amamos y te extrañamos. Pensando en ti. XX Phoe.

Christopher’s step-mother. It was a sweet gesture but she couldn’t even imagine what Phoebe and Michael, his parents, were going through today. She wanted to cry. After all, she hadn’t since his death. It had been an ever present threat, lingering just behind a hard wall of emotional armor that she wore like a second skin. Without responding, Nica left her phone on the counter, freed a bottle of something or other from the only full cabinet in the apartment (the liquor cabinet), she retreated to the sanctity of the bathroom where she put another barrier between herself and the world, locking the door and climbing into the empty tub. Fully clothed, she sank down into the porcelain depths, the only sign of life coming in the form of the rise and fall of the bottle with each drink and the ragged breathing that was her best attempt at holding it together.

“Feliz cumpleaños, Christopher.”
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Nicanora
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 10, 2016 1:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

10 September 2016

One swipe, three taps. She held her breath and waited. It wouldn't last forever, after all.

"Hey, I can't come to the phone right now but if you drop your name and number after the beep, I'll get back to you as soon as I can."

BEEP

"... ... ... I want to be angry... ... ..." exhale, "I want to be angry at him. At them. It's wrong. It's so wrong... But so is my anger... ... ... ... ... I'm not mad that he came back, no matter the laws. ****, I've broken enough of them myself," another exhale, slower this time, "... I'm angry because I wish it was you back here with me." Nica laughed, short and humorless. "Wrong, right? I know. Don't hate me for it. I'll see you again eventually... in the mean time I'll try to do the best I can. Te amo, hermano."
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Nicanora
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PostPosted: Sat Jun 03, 2017 9:20 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

11 May 2017

Between Bluebird Sky, Will, and the intermittent nature of working with Crispin both through training and the odd sort of business partnership they had formed, the distractions were abundant. It made it easy, almost, to keep her hands, heart, and mind busy enough that she could avoid thinking. That was the killer, thinking, and it was a slow death. Trust her, there was nothing quick about the steady dissolution of a bond forged over a lifetime and through a nigh unbreakable oath. Nothing fast or merciful about the pervasiveness of her dwelling. It had been almost a year and a half, surely she should have been over it by now.

Instead it was as if someone had cemented her boots to New Year’s Day so that every sunrise was the first in which her parabatai no longer existed.

It was Thursday. It should have been a training day. Instead a vague text had been left for her partner that she wouldn’t be available. Partner, what an odd term. The other Rhy’Din based Shadowhunter had always been something of an enigma for Nicanora. There were certain unspoken understandings struck between them, a familiar knowing in their upbringing and coping mechanisms. Or lack thereof, it was debateable. It was a slow burn friendship, built bit by bit on a foundation of vigorous training, Asian food, and mutual implied facepalming in the presence of the not-so-Mundane paramedic.

But at the end of the day, despite their similar diminutives, he wasn’t Christopher. Christopher was dead and though it wasn’t the same deep clawfoot tub she had sulked in the year prior, she spent the better part of the day curled up in the locked bathroom. Her company was a bottle of Ron Montero pale rum and a pack of cowboy killers. Both were half gone by midday, leaving her head to swim or more precisely drown in her thoughts. Sometime around three (or was it four?), she freed her phone from the counter and fumbled through her contacts.

--A--

Altatorre, Christopher


Nica tapped the call button and wait for it to go straight to voicemail. Instead it rang three times and connected.

“Hello?” An unfamiliar masculine voice answered. Her breath caught in her chest.

“Hello?” They asked again. For all the words she had meant to ramble to her best friend’s voicemail, she had none for the man on the other end.

“I hear someone breathing. Are you there?” Once more their voice crackled in Nica’s ear. Finally she fought back the bile rising in her throat and managed to answer.

“Y-yeah. I’m here…. Um… Christopher?” She knew it wasn’t him but it was the only name that could form on her tongue. The person on the other end sighed.

“No. This isn’t Christopher and I really wish you people would stop calling for him.”

“I’m s--,” Before the words could slip free, the other person hung up. His apartment, his phone number, it was like she was losing Christopher in bits and pieces all over again no matter how much she tried to cling to what was left. Though she wondered who else still called Christopher’s number after all this time, the thought was set to the wayside in favor of acknowledging the pain residing in her chest just beneath her right collarbone. It was enough that when she touched two fingers to the spot, she half expected them to come away sticky and red but there was nothing there save for the long faded Mark, a silver-white reminder of what had been and would never again be.
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Nicanora
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 25, 2017 12:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

19 June 2017

The time difference between Nicanora and Daniel meant that her text came in the early evening despite the morning hour in Rhy’din. Deep in the Carpathian Mountains was hardly a good place for cell reception, especially within the high walls of the Scholomance, a castle cut into the face of a mountain. It took Daniel another hour and a half to get far enough away to make the call without rousing suspicion.

Nica answered on the third ring. “Digame.”

“Nicanora.”

“Daniel… I didn’t expect to hear from you so soon.”

“You said to call at my convenience. Now is convenient.” It wasn’t, but just the same. Convenience was subjective.

“Thank you. I’ve, um, I’ve got an odd request but I wouldn’t ask if I didn’t absolutely need it.”

“Of course. What do you need?”

“A copy of the Book of Gray. Sooner rather than later.”

“What of your familial copy?”

“In Madrid. I don’t think my father would offer it over so easily.”

“Not even for your studies?” Beat. “I assume it is for that?”

“...Yeah. Save for me and money, he refuses to send anything to Rhy’Din.”

“Odd, but alright. I’d think for as intent as he was on you continuing your training that he wouldn’t be opposed to such an essential item.”

“My thoughts as well… but you know my father.”

“Very well. When do you need it?”

“The sooner the better but it’s not horribly urgent.”

“Mmm, give me twenty-four hours to locate a sendable copy and I can arrange shipping soon after. Four days?”

“Four days is more than sufficient.”

“Consider it done then.”

“I owe you.”

“You owe me nothing. You know I’d…”

“I know. How’re Dia and Cristián?”

“Well enough but you should call her.”

“I… I will. Eventually.”

“Mmh. Anything else I can do for you?”

“No… no, that should be it. Daniel?”

“Yes, Nicanora?”

“Gracias. Por todo.”

“It’s nothing, really.”

“It’s more than you know. I’ll talk to you later.”

“Goodbye, Nica.”

“Bye Daniel.”
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 12, 2017 7:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

23 June 2017

Late

"You simply do not let them be taken." She repeated to herself on her way from the edge of Seaside and Battlefield Park to the heart of Old Temple. The other Nephilim's words echoed in her mind with every step of the way. Beachside bungalows gave way to the short and squat brick and mortar buildings of the old market. When she crossed the river and those buildings turned into sky reaching spires and bell towers, she knew she was nearly home. Unfortunately, when she climbed the steps to the front door of the apartment she shared with the rather standoffish paramedic, she thought that maybe just maybe she'd catch him before he headed back out to work yet again. Alas, it wasn't in the cards. The apartment was dark save for a light on in the fish tank and one over the kitchen sink. Her shoulders sank and with the motion she dropped her rucksack by the door and her keys on the table. By the time he returned, she had fallen asleep on the couch. Not quite like she intended to stay there overnight but rather curled up uncomfortably into one corner with her head on her arm and her arm on the couch's back.

2211 Hours

Old Temple


"You two talkin' yet?" Ronnie glanced aside to his partner, slumped down in the passenger seat of the old ambulance. The their shift had ended almost forty-five minutes prior and the had spent the last fifteen just sitting there, parked in the alley outside the towering sprawl of his warehouse apartment. There were bags under the sandy haired man's eyes and he hadn't shaved in over a week.

Will merely grunted his response. "No."

"You over it yet?" Ronnie snorted.

"I dunno." A shoulder rolled in a shrug but he at least turned a small glance the much bigger man's way. "Why?"

"Life's short, kid. Just..." Ronnie paused for a moment. "Don't forget that." The engine came to life again in a modest rumble and before will could protest, they were pulling out of the alley. Three blocks later they were pulling up to an all night Stop-n-Shop; it might have been divine providence that the Grillenium Falcon truck was parked outside.

"Huh."

Twenty minutes later...

The sound of Will's key in the lock was faint, a light nudge of his hip causing it to creak when it opened, followed by the fragile crinkling of a plastic grocery bag. His work bag was discarded by the door, the subtly fragrant bags finding a home on the coffee table before the slumbering Nephilim. He couldn't have said how long he had stood there, watching her with a mild tilt of his head to one side. It was some minutes after that when he stood behind the couch and let the thin petals of a fake Stop-n-Shop rose glide along the long curve of her neck, after he had curled an errant lock of hair over the shell of her ear.

It had taken a night or two for her to de-escalate from the elevated high of battle but by Friday she slept soundly even with the rustling of plastic and the metallic click and wooden groan as he came through the door. She was hungry at the very least and if the pseudo-velvet rose petals hadn't roused her, the smell of food would have. There was a subtle tinge of whiskey on her breath which may have accounted for how she slept so well in such an uncomfortable position. A leonine yawn stretched her jaw, her eyes resistant to opening. But only for a few moments before she groaned and sat upright. Her head tipped forward then side to side to work the tension out of her muscles. She succeeded somewhat but couch sleeping was hell on the alignment, angel blooded or not. Her nostrils flared, assessing the bag on the coffee table. Sniff. Sniff sniff. "Pesto, provolone, and mozzarella?"

"Enough for days." The flower teased down over her collarbone and back up over her cheek, the paramedic looming over her. "Fridge has been bare all week and you're recovering."

"Tomato basil?" Came the follow up. It was easier to talk food than it was to let spill everything on her mind. She looked up and back over her shoulder at him only to wince at the crick in her neck. Turning back, she stretched and arm across her torso then swung her legs off the couch so she could lean and look into the bag herself.

"And sopa de ajo." Will's muscles creaked, his body protesting as he shrugged out of his work jacket and tossed it over the back of a nearby chair. "Plus two bags of lemon cookies." The rose was slipped into her hair before both hands were planted on the backrest of the couch, his athletic form leaned forward as he watched her.

That must have been the garlic she smelled. A look of legitimate surprise echoed across her expression as she pawed through the bag's contents, drawing out paper wrapped sandwiches and styrofoam cups of soup kept closed with flimsy plastic lids. For the time being, she left the rose in her hair. A plastic soup spoon was twirled between her fingers as she sat back and tipped a look up at him nearly upside down. "Come sit with me?"

"I dunno." One corner of his mouth twitched faintly. "Got a good view down the front on your shirt."

She glanced down at the neckline of her shirt, a navy blue scoop neck that had a habit of clinging to her frame. A small smile curled her mouth and with a heave ho sigh, she reached up for him, intent on dragging him down to her. "Por favor? I've, ah, got things to say."

Without sharing another snappy comeback, the paramedic rounded the couch and then sat down beside her. He made no move for the food but sat close enough to Nicanora to inspire at least some comfort in the situation before them. He tipped a subtle look her way, patient.

"I've been unfair to you." She began once he settled though she didn't look at him. Instead she kept her hands busy with peeling lids from containers and unwrapping sandwiches. Each was squared neatly on the table, an almost perfectionist bordering on OCD angling setting them at nearly perfect intervals. "I've been unfair and I'd like to explain my understanding of why that is the case. I just want you to listen, if you're willing. When I'm done, you're welcome to be mad, to yell, to leave, or whatever. But I just want you to listen... if you will. Okay?"

"I'm sitting here," he told her, nodding. "If you don't mind the stink of sixteen hours in the cut, the least I can do is give you my ear." Both hands dropped carefully into his lap.

She nodded twice, once for him, once for herself. Forearms to her knees, she sucked at her bottom lip, running her tongue across the chapped flesh as she decided where to begin. For all that she rehearsed it on the way home, in the moment it had all slipped out of her head. Paper crinkled as she freed a lemon cookie from its friends. Her fingers worried the edge, scraping flakes of the treat off at random.

"The way I've... treated you. It isn't a reflection on you or your skills... your experiences. It's a reflection on me. To have you at my side in the midst of the things I've seen... I have no doubt that it would in fact make things easier for all involved. Assuredly had you been there on Tuesday it would have. But the issue isn't with you. It's with me. If you're in a room, I can always find you... and not just because of your mouth." A look flickered aside just to see if he picked up on the nip of levity before she took a breath and continued.

"Always. And in that moment, if I thought for an instant that something could happen while I was focused on another task, I would hesitate between the two. Hesitation, no matter how slight, that's how you get yourself killed." Fast the lemon cookie was becoming a pile of crumbs on her thigh. "I learned how to wield a sword before I learned how to ride a bike. I had my judo sandan before most kids trade in their white belt. I've been a fighter since I could walk and I do not hesitate. Or I didn't..."

The rest of the cookie crumbled in her grasp and she poked at the remnants on her leg with a frown. "Since Christopher died, I find myself second guessing every step that could run the risk of compromising the little bit that I've built since then. You're at the center of that and that isn't your fault. You're not him. He's dead. You're not. And I have no right to bubble wrap you to protect you from the life I live, not if I want to maintain the privilege of our relationship. I'm... I'm not sorry for wanting to keep you safe but I am sorry that I didn't give you a choice in the matter. I'm going to try to be better about it."

With a heavy exhale and a heave of her shoulders, she was done.

"In hindsight," he said quietly. "I can see that. You lost the most important person in your life. Now there's someone else almost as special and you're forced to realize that it's possible it'll happen again."

He leveled a hard stare at the food laid out on the coffee table, his own elbows dropping to his knees a she took a deep breath. "My life has been defined by people telling me what I can't do. What I'm not capable of. Where I can't go. Who I can't be. I remember more of my earlier childhood than I'm willing to admit to anyone and I was only ever meant to be a footnote in a sad newspaper article. From one place to another, it's been about what I can't survive, what I can't endure, and what I've left behind. What I've lost."

A subtle turn of his head stole a look at her in profile.

"Can't begin to understand what you had with, Christopher. You can explain the parabatai to me a thousand times and it'll only ever be words. Important words, but just words. I don't come from your world. But I've lost. I lost my birth parents. I've lost my adopted family, since on my Earth I'm KIA. Every friend I've ever had since the age of seventeen is dead. I couldn't save any of them. I work a job where failure isn't guaranteed but the strong possibility is inevitable. I lose people. I... get loss." A soft snort flared his nostrils and, for a moment, he considered breaking the rule about smoking inside the apartment. "It made being an affable ass easy. Keeping people at arm's length easy. Now? Not so easy."

Will looked away.

"It made wanting to live without committing violence easy. I've engaged in more than my fair share. I was good as it. But I made a new life here, though it was easy to walk away. Now here I am. Beautiful warrior woman, smart and sexy, can slay monsters and suck a golfball through a garden hose. You've never made any bones about who you are. What you do. It's part of you, so... I love that too, even if I worry. Nicanora...

“...life is short. Too short. I'll live it on my terms. You can live it on yours. We can do that together. I'm no more fragile than you are and, Spain aside, am capable of more than you get to see. If you need me. If our friends need me. I'll step up. I can not throw a punch and still not let you down. I love your stupid, hot, sexy, warrior ass too much to just sit on my hands."

"I never wanted you to think I felt you were incapable," she murmured. After all, she had spent ten minutes explaining the issue wasn't with his skills but with her own, a doubt that sank in and made her believe that perhaps she wasn't capable. Steam rolled off the soup in billowing wisps that were soon lost to the atmosphere. She soaked up her counter, taking it all in word by word, spoken and unspoken both. Her fingers brushed the crumbs from her leg. Steadying her hands against her knees, she swallowed a thought and instead offered a few quiet words. "I'll do better about keeping you in the know and letting you decide where to involve yourself. Deal?"

"Come here, Nicanora." There was the single, subtle crook of a finger.

"Our food's getting cold," she pointed out but turned toward him anyways, one knee drawn up beneath her to better face him.

"That's why we have a microwave." She turned and a hand was there to grab her, fingers hooking into the front of her jeans. Will was unapologetic in the way he pulled her forward with a jerk, yanking her across his lap. "And a toaster oven. And takeout menus."

The other hand found her hair, brushing it from her face and using the grip to turn her gaze up to his, their eyes mean with minimal distance between. "Sometimes what we do pushes the wrong buttons, picking at mnemonic cues that dredge up things up without intending. Your heart was in the right place. So's mine. Just let me love the **** out of you, **** the Hell out of you, and if Hell takes umbrage to that, we'll face it together. Maybe we'll let Crispin help. He'll have to wear the Mario Kart shirt."

Careful not to kick the table in the process of being hauled into his lap, she fixed him with an owlish look as he brought her gaze up to bear. "You know he won't do that. He despises the whole thing." She said with a breathy laugh. "He, ah, sorta helped me work through this whole thought process. I know you were upset with him too, but his perspective helped, I think."

"I'll send him a cake." Or maybe a text. Or both. It was hard to tell at this point. "Ronnie helped too."

"Did he?" She wasn't surprised. Will's partner was often a voice of reason when the paramedic refused to see the light. "What'd he say?"

"That I'd never had sex this good." He lied.

"I'm surprised you didn't realize that on your own." The full line of her mouth swung into a smile before she tipped her chin to kiss him on the forehead. "Ronnie's good people. I'm glad you talked."

"You should eat, Fanny." The rose was plucked from her hair and teased along her neck. "I need to go defunk myself."

"Fiiiiiiine," she said after a moment, lingering in his lap despite her agreement.

"You're not moving," he pointed out to her, giving her hair a hard tug and dropping his other hand to her thighs. "Maybe I should eat Fanny then?"

"I'm not." She confirmed for his benefit, fixing him with a level stare. "In the shower maybe?"

That grip on her hair was a handy thing. It made it so easy to pull her in closer, his mouth laying claim to hers with a week's worth of repressed hunger.

The indecent sounds she had been saving for the first bites of food were instead muffled against his mouth. Nica squirmed in his lap, her hand seeking his free one to see instead about tugging them both to their feet.

"Mm." Will rumbled his approval into her mouth before a slow play of his tongue on hers ceased and he was drawing back. "Up," he encouraged her and, one they were upright, slapped her on the ass. "Pack the food back up."

And then he was headed for the bathroom.

She was up before he could pop the 'p' in 'up'. On her feet, the smack to her ass garnered a heated look but she took her time bending over the table to close up soup and re wrap sandwiches. Once it was stashed in the fridge, she followed amidst a shed trail of clothing.
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Nicanora
Adult Wyrm
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 15, 2017 8:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

2 July 2017

"I really hate to do this, but is there any chance I might be able to get a little extra this month?"

"What're you blowing it all on now?"

"Hookers and blow, Papa. Obviously."

"Anora. I hate when you say that."

"I know, why do you think I say it?"

"To turn me grey."

"Ladies love silver foxes."

"What have foxes got to do with this?"

"...It's a term to describe attractive older men with greying hair."

Chuff.

"It's a good thing, I swear."

"Dios mio, mija."

"Okay, I'll stop. But do you think that's possible?"

"You've yet to answer my question."

"Oh. Uh... I may've... sorta... quit my job."

"Quit? And that necessitates a financial emergency on my part why?"

"Because it's for a good reason."

"Elaborate."

"I've been training."

"With whom?"

"Unimportant. What's important is that this has led to some lucrative casework through which I can exercise practical application of my skills as a Shadowhunter."

"I'm intrigued."

"I thought you may be. I was just... involved in something recently that meant missing scheduled shifts and ultimately my boss and I decided it was for the best if she could fill my position with someone who had a more mundane skillset."

"Go on."

"So... Will's working a lot to make up for it but if there's any way... any way in your heart that you'd consider it... I'm doing my best to abide by your wishes... to honor the gifts you've given me thus far in life..."

"He is helping to take care of you?"

"I don't need to be taken care of, Papa. I just need a little help."

"Semantics. When are you going to have him evaluated?"

"Evaluated?"

"For Ascension. It has been a year and a half. If you're serious about this man, it's only right."

"Papa... you know I can't do that..."

"Why not?"

"I don't think... I doubt he'd even... I mean... I can't even come home without the Clave jumping down my throat. You think they'll let me come home and offer a non-Nephilim for consideration? They want him for other reasons... they'll... they'll take him away from me and I'll never see him again."

"Do you think so low of our people?"

"Of our people? No. Of our government? Yes."

"We'll revisit the subject another time then."

"Please, Papa, I'd really rather not..."

"Fine. I'll make the transfer but I expect a report by the end of the month on your progress."

"Yes, Sir."

"I love you, mija."

"Te quiero tambien, Papa."
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