Look Who's Coming for Dinner

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Post  Aasha on Sun Oct 19, 2008 11:06 pm

TheRedChef wrote:The conversation had fallen into a lull and he was left with out the warm comforts of his- It was neigh impossible to even think it when she was gone. Jas was being moody on the porch, Tiffany was lost in morosity, Aasha had gone to attend to house business, and Heero....he wasn't exactly sure what Heero was doing. The aromas from the kitchen were killing him and only a few rusks of bread were left on the table. What the hell kind of dinner party is this anyway? Where's that woman? El..Eliza... Blast! He snatched the last crust before Heero could glom on to it.

The way this dinner was going, he better tell her now. It couldn't make things worse

"Tiffany," he ducked, trying to catch her weavering eyes, "You seem to be having a trying time, but..."

He leans forward and starts whispering urgently in her ear.
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Post  Aasha on Sun Oct 19, 2008 11:07 pm

Jasmyne wrote:Jas turns to see Jay at the door. Oh hey Jay, been a long time since we've met up, your a sight for sore eyes, whatcha do to yer self

Just the Aasha opened the door to greet him
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Post  Aasha on Sun Oct 19, 2008 11:08 pm

Papajay wrote:"Aasha, Jas, it has been a long time.."

Jay followed their stares to what he couldn't cover up. Bruises on his arms, he was sure a swollen lip, black eye. Tonight couldn't have been a worse choice to leave his house. He slapped himself mentally, people were going to worry. And if he revealed too much of what had really happened, Tiff might worry unnecessarily.

It was his own fault for wandering off alone, who would've thought that -they- would be there at that time. Jay shook himself, yet again, out of a memory which felt so distant, but had only recently happened. That he was standing here was nothing short of a miracle.

Jay put on his most nonchalant face and shrugged at their questions. "I ran into some of my old -friends- out in the woods. No need to worry, we went our own ways, turns out their life isn't for me" He'd hoped it was cryptic enough that he wouldn't have to lie. So what's going on here tonight? Is everyone leaving?"
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Post  Aasha on Sun Oct 19, 2008 11:08 pm

Listening to him neatly dodge what really happened, it hit Aasha that he didn't know about Aimar either. Jas knew, so she didn't have to worry about her reaction, but Jay...maybe he wouldn't react like Tiff did. Yer back now...stay outta woods fer a while. Umm...Jay... Her look was apologetic at Jas before she pulled Jay aside.

I dunno what to do about Tiff...she ain't actin' right...not after I told her about Aimar... Swallowing painfully, she continued; He had an accident...an'...he's gone. Tears, so close to the surface all evening, began to spill out, but still she continued; I found him...an' couldn't help...but Tiff...she jus' ain't actin' right. Do ya thinks ya ken help?

She didn't think to mention the tension between Tiff and Red, she was too concerned with getting the words out, then getting him inside. As she talked, she unobtrusively began to guide him through the door, hoping he'd follow.
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Post  Aasha on Sun Oct 19, 2008 11:12 pm

Jasmyne wrote:Jas was behind Jay and just said. Cmon, tis time to go back inside.
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Post  Aasha on Sun Oct 19, 2008 11:13 pm

Papajay wrote:News of Aimar's demise hit him harder than he would have imagined. He hadn't interacted with him a lot, but he found in him the same capacity for mischief that he found in himself. He would be long missed.

"I'm sorry Aasha, no one should ever have to find someone they care about in a situation like that." Jay squeezed her shoulder apologetically. "He was a good man, I'll miss his antics.

Jay worried more about Tiff, he hadn't seen her in months, Aasha's worry did not ease the ill feeling in his gut. "Where is she?"
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Post  Aasha on Sun Oct 19, 2008 11:13 pm

She was getting better at accepting the comfort everyone she'd met in Shrewsbury offered so easily. Nodding, she tried to smile as they walked, though she couldn't bring herself to say anything else about Aimar. Losing him was too difficult to face completely, there was even a bit of rage at him leaving her, even though dying wasn't something he could control.

She's in the dinin' room...wit' Red an' Jas's man...but Jay...she really ain't actin' right... Glancing over, she murmured; I was hopin' seein' you would help...
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Post  Aasha on Sun Oct 19, 2008 11:13 pm

Papajay wrote:Jay nodded silently, and huddled through the door trying to make the limp in his right leg less apparent than it really was. Smells of home cooked meals wafted into his face as he proceeded down the hall. Jay stopped at the entrance to the dining room.

"It's been a long time, Tiff"
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Post  Aasha on Sun Oct 19, 2008 11:14 pm

Justheero wrote:Heero tugged at his collar, and almost sighed with relief to see Jasmyne returning with the others. He hadn't expected to run out of things to chat about; these were people he could talk to for hours at a tavern, but put everyone in a formal dinner setting and it all became... awkward. There wasn't much that he could talk about at length other than medical studies, which he was certain would be considered poor dinner conversation... and worse, there was a subtext to everything, a tension in the group that he couldn't pretend to understand.

"Papajay," he said, smiling. "Good to see you."
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Post  Aasha on Sun Oct 19, 2008 11:14 pm

Tiffanyanne wrote:From the haze of her mind a familiar voice brought her somewhat out of her reverie. She moved her head to the side, Jay's face coming to her through the tunnel of her vision.

Jay, where have you been? You look hurt, are you alright?

But the other her was still in charge, still running the show while she was locked in the cage of her mind.

We are having dinner. Ellie, where is the dinner? As if on cue Ellie came forward, breathless from her run. She smiled and nodded to Jay, promising she would bring a chair and a place setting for him.

Shall we all eat?
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Post  Aasha on Sun Oct 19, 2008 11:15 pm

She had hoped...but no, the vacant look was still in her eyes, though she spoke long enough to have Ellie bring dinner in. If even Jay's presence wasn't getting through, Aasha was at a loss what to try. She didn't have many she considered family, in fact, Tiff was the only one, so seeing her family this way was killing her. - I wish she'd never asked about Aimar...but I had to tell her. What do I do? - And now, she was worried about him too, his pain was evident, even if he'd avoided the explanation.

Slipping quietly into her seat, she peered through her lashes at Red. He was still there, the magnetic pull strong, yet she could not capture the sense of calm she'd felt with his arms around her. Suddenly food seemed a bad idea, she didn't want to eat, she wanted to yell, or run. - Whats worse Ash? Having and losing, or never having at all? - It wasn't a question she could answer, the pang she felt as she glanced at Tiff only increased her confusion. Her head lowered as emotions overwhelmed her slight frame.

Unable to take any more, she tilted her chin up and looked around the table, stopping only when she got to Tiff. Her face showed a myriad of emotions, though none of them was in the firm voice that spoke up. If'n yer not wantin' me here cuz yer cousin is gone, jus' say so. Don't be checkin' out on my 'count.
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Post  Aasha on Sun Oct 19, 2008 11:15 pm

Tiffanyanne wrote:Strain upon stress upon nightmare. Everyone at the table wanted her to do something or be something right this moment. Aasha wanted assurance, Red wanted a confidant, Jas wanted her past defined, Jay... she didn't know what he wanted, but she could tell he needed healing.

Don't others get to grieve? Why not me. Why right now all now give me give me give me.

She felt like she was imprisoned in her mind, slamming against invisible walls. But it was Aasha's accusing words that broke her down.

"What is wrong with you people?!" She screamed. "I've been through hell and back and you tell me my cousin is dead and you want what? What do you want me to do?" Tears, unheaded, streamed down her cheeks. She leveled her eyes at each in turn. "What news Red? What bit of intrigue that right now I must turn my attentions to? " Her eyes turned to Jas. "I'm sorry I didn't have a better history found for you. It is what was there, I know nothing else. You are my sister, what more can I offer?" To Aasha, "How much does it take to assure you of your place in this family? I can't be hurt or grieve without you thinking I've turned against you? I'm sorry you had a horrible family experience, but I've done everything I can to make you feel welcome." And last her eyes went to Jay. "There is nothing left inside me Jay. I gave everything I had to my work and I am empty and alone. Ellie can get you some bandages and salve. There is nothing I can offer right now to help."

She turned, knocking her chair to the floor. It was time she go back to bed.
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Post  Aasha on Sun Oct 19, 2008 11:15 pm

She flinched as if struck when Tiffany yelled, though nary a word passed her lips. Anger she could deal with, unfounded rage was easy, you shut it out and tried your best to go on, regardless. She tried, desperately tried to keep her own temper in check. The safeguards she'd grown up with for so long to keep her quiet had broken into tiny pieces with Aimar, she'd not thought to repair them, so she struggled to fight back her words.

Tears were good, cleansing, healing perhaps. But was she glad to see them? She had no clue how to handle Tiff in this state, she'd never tried to comfort a soul, and was already failing miserably. She spared a brief thought to Tiffany being wrong, she wasn't empty inside, or she wouldn't be running.

- What do I do now though? - She could feel the pressure of tears building behind her eyes, the burning sensation that only holding them back caused. - Not crying in front of everyone...you can't...pull it together! - Reaching out, she grasped the almost full glass of whiskey in front of her, deliberately swallowing every drop before trying to catch a breath. Tears sprung up then, understandable as the burn penetrated, easy to explain away with the vile liquid.

Almost, but not quite setting the glass down, she let her eyes travel the room, before the glass flew, shattering on a nearby wall. Her voice trembled as she said; Jay...if'n...if'n yer needin' help wit' yer wounds...I ken do what ya tells me to. Picking a trembling form from the crowd, she continued; Ellie...makes Tiff some tea...somethin' to make her sleep...an' stay wit' her.

Her next breath was deep, her attempt to calm the wobble in her voice. I'm sorry this dinner ain't what nobody was exp'ctin'. Maybe I shouldn't have said nothin'...but its done. As her words tapered off, a wayward thought grabbed hold. She was too much of a burden on Tiff, family or no...she'd not continue to do so.
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Post  Aasha on Sun Oct 19, 2008 11:16 pm

Papajay wrote:Jay hadn't had time to sit down before Tiff had broken down and was unaware of how long he stood frozen unknowing what to do. He was only dimly aware that Aasha had spoken to him about caring for his injuries. In a broken whisper hardly audible Jay finally spoke:

"I just hadn't seen her in ages, my presence has brought unneeded stress to this house... I think t'would be best if I left for the time."

Jay waved off Aasha's concern for his injuries and smirked.

"Don't worry about me, I'm not an invalid. I think I'll go rest, send for me if you need anything."

Jay limped down the hall, feeling no need to 'hide' what everyone could already see. On his way out he picked up his walking stick and started his slow trek back home.
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Post  Aasha on Sun Oct 19, 2008 11:16 pm

TheRedChef wrote:Red seethed. Intrigue?! That stupid woman. She didn't even listen to warning nor reason.

"He was murdered, you fool!" he blurted out to the retreating Tiffany.
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Post  Aasha on Sun Oct 19, 2008 11:16 pm

Her mouth fell open, the words echoing inside as Red yelled out to Tiff. But who would murder Aimar? He was well liked, there was a much greater chance of her dying than him, at least if it was deliberate. - He never...even after I took him there...never said it wasn't an accident...why didn't he... - Hurt beyond belief over him keeping this from her, she had to wonder if he knew who had done it as well, and why.

She wanted to cry, no cling...better yet, she wanted to jump on a horse and ride until they were both exhausted. Instead, she'd been doing her damnedest to play hostess. She thought, other than the glass, she was composing herself well, but between Jay storming out claiming to be the stresser and Red's little bombshell, she was failing. One she didn't have the courage to face, it would break down a wall she'd built to block the memory, the other though...

Son of a...unneeded stress? I sent fer his bum, thinkin' he could help Tiff. Everyone knows she's got feelin's for him, an' he's gonna walk out? She didn't realize, nor care that she was talking out loud, the repressed anger and hurt came full force, in an outlet she could handle. Before she knew what she was doing, she'd run out the door after him.

He wasn't hard to catch, the limp was too pronounced for him to move quickly. Snatching his cane, she rounded on him. What's wrong with ya? Ya gots feelin's fer her...and she needs you. Get yer bum back in there an' help Ellie wit' her...jus' like she'd be doin' fer you any other time. She was glaring up, waving the cane to punctuate her words.
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Post  Aasha on Sun Oct 19, 2008 11:17 pm

Jasmyne wrote:Jay, Heero is a doctor, he can see to your wounds. she turned to Ellie. Dear make a plate up for Tiff and i'll take it to her, I'll just be a second everyone, just remain calm and Red quit yelling at her, she doesnt need that right now.

Jas grabbed the plate and headed for Tiffy's room and opened it. Here, you need to eat dear, dragging yourself down wont help you. She put her arms around Tiff and said. I know your my sister, who else could put up with me for this long, well cept maybe Heero but anyway i just wanted to let you know each and everyone of us in this house tonight are here for you each in their own special way, so cheer up and put on a happy face and remember that we all love you. I know Aimar's death is taking a heavy toll on you, it is on the others as well, they just use the emotional energy in a different way, dont let it take you down, ok, use it in a positive way that will be a lasting memory of him.

She kissed Tiff on the forehead and headed for the door. If there's anything you need, just ask
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Post  Aasha on Sun Oct 19, 2008 11:17 pm

Tiffanyanne wrote:Red's words were flung at her retreating back. She wanted to grab all available items and fling them at him, screaming that her cousin was no less murdered tomorrow than today and couldn't he have the decency to let her absorb the death first? But murder was a heavy burden of knowledge, and it had probably been eating at Red.

Look at your past you fool. Every time something was needed, you were the first to jump in and work to making it happen. You have lead most of these people in one capacity or another. They expect you to cope, be invulnerable, take charge... Can you blame them for not knowing what to do with you like this?

She almost fell in a weeping heap when Jay simply walked away. He'd rescued her once; she had no call to expect it again. Not when she had abandoned him for her work. He left her now, but hadn't she left him first?

Her body wasn't going to hold out much longer. She made it up the stairs and stumbled into her bed, the sounds of arguments drifting up to her from the people she had abandoned below. And then there was Jas, with a plate of food.

Thanks Jas. I don't know what's gotten into me. I just feel like I've used up my quotient of smiles and brave faces. Tiff picked at the food, knowing she needed to eat, hating the idea of doing anything but curling in a little ball and ignoring the world.

Good idea, that will make things better. Let someone else deal with the fact that your cousin was murdered. Don't ask why a boy without enough life to make enemies was murdered. Heck, don't ask if it might be your fault that it happened. He didn't have enemies, but you do don't you? A lot of powerful ones to boot. Shall we also ignore that this could threaten other people you love? So hide away in your pile of blankets while everything you love turns to dust.
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Post  Aasha on Sun Oct 19, 2008 11:17 pm

Jasmyne wrote:Listen up Tiff, just remember you cant be the foundation of everyone's lives, why dont you try picking up the pieces of your own life first before trying to tackle everyone else's all at once, hmm

Love ya sis, get some rest, but i've been here twice for dinner and still havent ate, i'll go settle the masses downstairs and eat and we'll see you in the morn when your refreshed.


Jas slowly shut the door and headed back downstairs
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Post  Aasha on Sun Oct 19, 2008 11:18 pm

Jasmyne wrote:Jas came back downstairs to greet everyone again and to reassure them Tiff is ok, she just needed some rest as she walked by the Red she slapped him in the back of the head. That was uncalled for Red.

Now, i would like to eat and since Ellie has the food ready, i say lets not let it go to waste and eat and we will all see Tiff when she is ready, not when they are ready

She sat down, ready to eat
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Post  Aasha on Sun Oct 19, 2008 11:18 pm

Papajay wrote:Shocked, Jay leaned away from the cane waving in his face, his arms flailing backwards as he fell on his bum.

"Aasha, Aasha, you wouldn't harm an already... uhh... gravely... injured man, would you?" Jay said, his voice low as he tried to stay out of range of his cane turned against him. He got back up on his feet staring back at her cautiously as she reprimanded him.

Jay paused a moment, he thought he was being a cause of her stress, it was selfish really, Aasha was right.

"You're right Aasha... you're right." He took his walking stick back, and smacked the dirt off of his bum as he hobbled back with her. He walked through the door and sat at the table. "You'll have to forgive my poor manners, Jas, is Tiff alright?"

Jay only sat a moment before he decided he'd better go check in on Tiff, he didn't feel like eating, his one and only purpose was nearly thwarted by his own cowardice. He slowly made his way up the stairs, finding hard to take each step. After a time, a no less than his strongest effort, he finally ascended the stairs. He stood for a time in front of Tiff's door, unsure of what to say or do. Finally he knocked "Tiff, it's Jay, I'm sorry... I, shouldn't have walked out, are you... are you alright?"
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Post  Aasha on Sun Oct 19, 2008 11:19 pm

Tiffanyanne wrote:As always it was her anger that brought her through trouble when nothing else could. Now that most of it had simmered down she felt as if she had come back into herself. She was still tired and drained, but it was more of body than mind now.

She could hear Jas downstairs, giving directions and leading people about. Her sister was already filling in the space she had left behind her.

So what do you want to do now? Certainly could use you around here you know. But they don't need you, and you need to be needed. You know where you really want to be right now. Don't lie to yourself. You want to follow Kerri, make sure she lives up to those promises. You just can't breath if you aren't sticking your nose into politics somewhere.

The voice inside her was right and she knew it. She moved quietly around the room, filling a large bag with a small healing kit, the dress Jas had given her, the Balboa pendant, a large amount of coin, and various other sundries she would need on the road. Then she sat down and took up her quill and began the long series of letters that would explain why she left them all again.

Dear Aasha,
When I was a little girl, I was very poor and very alone. My father was a drunkard and gambler who after spending every penny we had, gambled away my hand in marriage. I ran away from home before the man who won it could claim his prize. So I know what it is to run Aasha. I know what it's like to have demons behind you that make you jump at shadows and fear setting roots anywhere. But you know what else I know. I know that eventually, you have to stop running. Otherwise they win. The bad guys win if they can keep you running away. They win because they stop you from having a home and family because you fear them too much. Don't let them win Aasha.
I know you will probably be angry at me when you find me gone. But this is something I have to do. There was one thing that I decided when I stopped running. I would dedicate my life to the weak and poor who were forced to run because the rich and powerful made them. I've been a mayor, I've been a Duchess. But recently I met a regent who had all sorts of power and seemed to delight in making people run from him. A new Regent has been elected and I want to make sure that never happens again.
In my lock box there is the deed to the house. It is yours now. There is also a fair amount of coin that should keep you steady. Everything in the house is yours.
I will come back Aasha. I hope you will offer me a room to stay in when I return. I hope you will forgive me.
I truly do love you Aasha. As a daughter, as a sister, as a friend.
Love always,
Tiff

Dear Sister,
Is it something in the Balboa blood that makes us so fleet of foot and rootless? You and I spend so much time away from home that one must wonder if we truly have them. We should tell such people that it is not a plot of land that makes home, but the people who share our lives with us. You are home to me Jasmyne. And I must leave it for a while because I want everything that is home protected.
While I'm gone I need you to keep an eye on Aasha. Red's announcement that Aimar was murdered worries me. I fear I have enemies who are trying to get to me through family. Be careful yourself, though I know I don't have to tell you that.
I love you and hope that I make it back in time for your wedding. I can't imagine anything more wonderful that being there to see you wed.
Love you,
Tiff

Dear Red,
You have taken it upon yourself to teach Aasha to read and write. I need you to take up one more thing. Protect Aasha. I don't know why Aimar was murdered but I fear it has something to do with me. I cannot be here to protect her, I have something I must take care of. I need you to do it in my stead. I am trusting you to this.
If any harm comes to her you will have to face me.
I don't know when I'll be home. But trust me when I say this is something I must do.
Your Friend,
Tiff

Tiff was pulling another piece of paper out when a sound at her door made her look up.
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Post  Aasha on Sun Oct 19, 2008 11:20 pm

Papajay wrote:"Tiff, are you ok, are you decent? I'm coming in..."

Jay gently opened the door, unsure of what he expect he'd see. What he did see was the furthest thing from his mind. Tiff, in her riding clothes, bag packed, she was writing a letter when she looked up. Confusion met his eyes, and then understanding. She was leaving again, and this time he couldn't chase after her, he was hardly in the shape or condition which favored long distance travel. He wasn't sure of where she was headed, or if he could beg her to stay, would it be fair to even attempt such a thing?

"Tiff, I'm sorry I just left, it was incredibly selfish of me not to stay when you needed me... I can only pray for your forgiveness." Jay spoke as his eyes once again darted to her bag. "... Tiff... you're." The words caught in his throat, and he was having trouble getting them out, "You're leaving again... aren't you?" He couldn't help but feel partially responsible. He tried to put on his best smile over the sadness of missing Tiff so much, and only being able to see her for a mere moment before she was off again. "How long before you come back?"
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Post  Aasha on Sun Oct 19, 2008 11:20 pm

Tiffanyanne wrote:Jay, his name was a mere whisper as she looked up at him, looking with eyes that were sad and accusing.

I'm a coward, I wanted to leave now so no one would give me those eyes.

I... I am leaving again. She set down the quill and got up, moving past him to shut the door so their voices wouldn't drift downstairs. I've left too much undone in so many places. I could stay here, stop and have a life that wasn't dedicated to people I will never meet and who will never care about work I've done. But, I can't. She pushed him to sit in her chair and opened a cabinet filled with various ointments and bandages. She began slowly cleaning off visible wounds, her touch light, fingers gliding over the rips and tears of the flesh. There are too many people who can't fight for themselves. I know it isn't my responsibility... but in some ways, it is. If no one had been there for me... Zusha, Collen... You... what would have happened? Someone has to be there for them.

She peeled off his shirt, finding the marks below, methodically attending to them. I've dedicated myself to a cause. How can I give the little left over like table scraps to the people here? You all deserve so much more. Her hand pressed his cheek, making him look up, then her lips pressed to his forehead. I'm sorry. Tears trickled down, sliding off her cheeks and dribbling onto his own.

Please don't tell anyone I've gone. I'm leaving tonight to follow the new Regent. I'll keep Lila here since she is in no condition to travel. Let Aasha know the foal is hers when it's born. She laughed softly through the tears. I seem to keep giving the girl animals as a fill in.
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Post  Aasha on Sun Oct 19, 2008 11:20 pm

Papajay wrote:Jay nodded sullenly and looked down. He knew she had to leave, and why, it didn't make it any easier to watch her go time and again. "I understand Tiff, I really do. I'm quite sure this country would fall apart if not for you" he laughed glumly.

He thought about what she had said about table scraps. "Ya know Tiff, you may think you only give table scraps, the shreds of what you have left, but none of us view it like that, especially not me. Jay twiddled his thumbs as he contemplated what to say next. "I think I've danced around this for a long time, I've said how deeply I care for you, but that doesn't scratch the surface. The truth is, that I'm in love with you." He thought of the words, but was finding it increasingly more difficult to speak and a challenge to hide his tears.

"If I have to wait for you to save King and Country, to save those who can't save themselves, I'll wait. I know what this life means to you, and what's important to you, is important to me, I'll be here when you get back, I'll watch after the town, and" he chuckled, embraced her tightly and kissed her forehead. "Lila. Tiff, until you return, just be safe ok? Come back home."
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Look Who's Coming for Dinner - Page 3 Empty Re: Look Who's Coming for Dinner

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