2019-06-17: A Shy-Cute Meltdown

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  • Log: A Shy-Cute Meltdown
  • Cast: Talia, Seraph Amaranth
  • Where: Festina Lente
  • Date: 17th June 2019
  • Summary: Ammy makes lunch for Talia and speaks of several important and adorable topics, leading to...


<Pose Tracker> Talia has posed.

It's a new day in the Festina Lente!

Talia was out for a couple of days, helping guard Jacqueline Barber -- but also helping with an order Rin put in for some rare herbs in Mushroom Rock Road. Talia's Mirage helps her get to the nooks and crannies where those herbs grow, and she had done that. She arrives, now, with her Spira outfit: long black pants, a sleeveless blue shirt, and dagger and sword at her side.

She comes through the door, poking her head into the main area with pursed lips -- a part of her concerned about what else might have happened, when she was out.

Then, she calls out: "Ammy! I am home!" she says. "I found amazing herbs and brought home some pastries, no?"

The pastries are in a bag at her side.

<Pose Tracker> Seraph Amaranth has posed.

Ammy has been trying to not look like she's a useless sad sack in the last couple of days, and the talk with Ivan kind of helps. She's trying to remind herself that at least she's progressing on that front.

She's at least sure that he's not going to go murder someone.

But then Talia calls out--

Ammy! I am home!

And Ammy turns from where she's at the stove bustling to make lunch; she's changed out her gown for something that looks chic casual, a sleeveless turtleneck-type top in some red chiffon and asymmetrical huggy shorts.

She pauses to stare and flush as she admits, "The pants are still killer on you," as she beckons her in. "Lunch in ten?"

<Pose Tracker> Talia has posed.

Talia cracks a smile and /almost/ flusters at the compliment. But, in the end, she keeps it to a slight blush, before sauntering over to her. She slings an arm across Amaranth's shoulders, then leans over to kiss her on the cheek.

"I like the chiffon with that top, no?" she says. "They look good! Ah, but--I have you to thank for the recent increase in stylishness." She winks at that.

No magical heart /yet/.

She puts the bag down on the counter, then she peers into the pot to see what Ammy is making. "That sounds good, no?"

<Pose Tracker> Seraph Amaranth has posed.

"H-hmm... well, I was happy to really help out. You're gorgeous and-- w-well, there's a benefit for me too, right?" Amaranth stammers with a smile. "And thanks! I thought it looked cute."

It looks like Ammy's got some white sauce on a saucepan, and it's easy to connect the dots since there's a pot of water bubbling with some raw pasta next to it. Does Spira have pasta? Perhaps the pasta machine is a filthy Al Bhed contraption.

"Pasta felt good today. Do you want wine with it, or are you going out again?" asks Ammy, looking just a bit flush with the kiss.

<Pose Tracker> Talia has posed.

There is also the matter of Talia having a noticeable scar on her upper left hip, which makes her always get -- at bare minimum -- long shorts, but preferably pants of some kind. She keeps the smile on her face, and then she leans over at Ammy...

...and winks again...

...and this time, the little ice heart wafts over her head and orbits it a couple of times, before puffing out of existence.

"Wine is good! I am staying in, no? I want to spend an evening at home," she says. She says it easily; it still makes her feel a little strange, inside, to call a place home. The familiarity of doing so feels strange, too.

<Pose Tracker> Seraph Amaranth has posed.

Ammy's been considering floating the idea of glamours for Talia for a while now, but hasn't had the courage to yet. But perhaps, now that she's revealed that she has a big illusion over the most prominent part of her face -- her eyes...

Then she's distracted as the ice heart wafts over her head and-- she giggles again.

"Okay, smarty-pants, now your task is to chill the wineglasses," Ammy speaks heartfully, wagging a finger as she has several doves float two champagne glasses to the prepared table.

"... an evening at home," she pauses, not missing that. "... even hosting this place, it's different when it's alone. So..."

She smiles a bit wider.

"Welcome home, no?"

<Pose Tracker> Talia has posed.

The idea never quite occurred to her -- maybe because she never thought of Ammy applying her glamours to her. Talia looks at her for a moment, and then she giggles at the term 'smarty-pants.' She leans backward, her smile entirely playful, and she steps away to get closer to the wineglasses.

"I think I can handle this job, no?" Talia says, with a glance over her shoulder. And then she touches one flute glass with her finger; a thin coating of frost spreads over the outside. She makes the same happen to the second.

"Mm," she says, looking back over her shoulder. Talia's smile is wider... and warmer, and she breaks eye contact with a little embarrassment. "...it is nice," she says. "Having a place that is better, because I am here."

She doesn't make the usual joke, that every place is nicer when she is there.

<Pose Tracker> Seraph Amaranth has posed.

It doesn't take long for Ammy to finish up -- ten minutes, and she's brought the two plates of pasta to the table; linguine with aforementioned white sauce, which appears to have chunks of chicken and asparagus.

"You mentioned herbs... do you want me to garnish them ontop?" Amaranth sounds pretty interested, beckoning and having a dove fly a bottle of white wine from one of their shelves.

It's Filgaian, Talia notes. Ammy probably fetched it while they were back at the Blue Star.

<Pose Tracker> Talia has posed.

"Mm-hm! I brought a few back..." The rest were sold to Rin's Travel Agency. Talia looks up at her, cheerfully; she'd sat down and waited, and let the frosted glasses go from much too cold to just cold enough. She tilts her head to the side, watching the bottle of white wine.

Filgaian! She isn't all that surprised.

"Ah, it looks good, no?" Talia says, with a happy look down at the pasta. She picks up her fork. "Where did you learn to cook? I--ah--well, I can only do the basics."

<Pose Tracker> Seraph Amaranth has posed.

"W-well......"

Amaranth recants the thought of her cooking for a moment, before perking up a little as she checks through the bag of herbs with a hum and preparing a little garnish -- "I think basil would work great here." And with that sprinkle...

"There was a long period where I didn't want to do anything. And there were people who urged me out of my shell and to try to become interested in things again. Cooking wound up being one of them," Amaranth explains.

"Ragnell... was one of them."

A pause, and a flat-faced, "... did... you know she was still alive?" Oh no terrible dinner conversation Ammy!!

<Pose Tracker> Talia has posed.

"Oh... oh, I'm sorry--" Talia starts to apologize. She knew that Ammy hid away, though she never learned quite why. She knew that people brought her out of her shell, including Ragnell. Ragnell's memory... it is still painful to think of her.

She glances downward for a moment. Then, she looks up sharply, and her fork drops. A little bit of white sauce splatters on the tablecloth.

"She is /what/?" she asks. "But--I thought--for certain--um--" Talia tilts her head to the side. "...did you see her? Or... or is it someone else, who did, and told you?"

Clarine, perhaps.

<Pose Tracker> Seraph Amaranth has posed.

Amaranth looks even more exasperated at this point as it began to be clear that Talia doesn't know. She looks to the table cloth for a moment and stammers--

"It was Ivan, of all people! Aah, I can't tell whether it's a coincidence or she's playing tricks on me..."

<Pose Tracker> Talia has posed.

Talia groans and puts her head in her hands.

"I even said that your sister died, but did not mention her name," she says. "Ivan would have had no idea, no? Her probably thought she was..." She motions once with her hand. "...well, Ragnell."

Flirty, troublesome, and as charming as she is irritating. Talia hasn't talked to Ragnell that much, but enough to know that.

"You talked to Ivan some?" she says, looking up.

<Pose Tracker> Seraph Amaranth has posed.

Amaranth tries to rally, chuckling nervously as she says, "He wasn't even certain if I was talking about a same Ragnell, with a sister seraph who was also a Seraph of Darkness." She squints. "I'm not sure if such a coincidence could exist with our numbers..."

A pause, though, as she restarts on her pasta, and takes some of her wine.

"Ah... yes. He came back, um, asking details about who he should try hunting in the Guard. I hope I managed to... dissuade him from that. But we talked. About me... about him, too."

A bob of her head.

"I didn't want to really hold much back from him. I think it would be in poor taste, now that I have offered him this place as a home... no?"

<Pose Tracker> Talia has posed.

"Hunting in the /Guard/?" Talia asks, looking up with a little bit of alarm. She focuses on that, first, rather than the sheer coincidence. "It is good that you did! Ah, it could have gotten him into so much trouble, no?"

She sighs, then; her eyes glance down at the ground, for a second, as she thinks about what she says. Opening up to Ivan is not without its risks. On the other hand, that Ivan came back speaks volumes.

She nods, finally.

"...I'm glad the two of you talked," she admits. "I--I was worried. He... I want him to feel welcome here, no? But he is prickly, and he has his pride, and he... he is so stubborn."

She smiles a little, looking down. "Maybe we are not so different."

<Pose Tracker> Seraph Amaranth has posed.

"... honestly, it's because I think I see so much of myself in him, once upon a time," Amaranth admits bashfully. "That same sense of stubbornness and pride... and also--" she clears her throat. "Perhaps being a bit under-equipped for some social situations. There was maybe a time I also offered death as a gift," she nervously, neeervously laughs.

"Anyway. Yes... that was what I was hoping could connect him -- connect us together," Amaranth continues.

"A little at a time. I wouldn't want to rush anything."

<Pose Tracker> Talia has posed.

Talia pauses, for a moment, at the comparison between them. "I can see it, a little, no? Not--not you offering that, but... that you had trouble with people, like he does." She hesitates, for a second. She knows that she is the one who is the more sociable of the both of Ammy and Ivan.

She looks up, then, and cracks a smile. "I'm glad. We won't rush him," she says. "Just... help him, and make sure he does not do something he regrets. Ah, besides..."

Talia trails off for a moment. "...When I first met you, I had no idea that you found it hard, sometimes, no? Both times I first met you." She winks again, then starts to eat her pasta.

<Pose Tracker> Seraph Amaranth has posed.

"I think I told you this story before... but it was when a travelling magician -- not a mage, mind you, a magician -- came to Old Vane," Amaranth expresses, not sure if she's told the story or not.

"I wound up talking with her. About what it means to be a magician, a stage performer... she showed me all kinds of dazzling tricks that seemed more magical than magic itself, with a confident smile on her face."

She spends a bit of time dining a bit more, to let that part of the story settle. Then...

"She had her own troubles. But she told me that even in the toughest times, when she can put on a show and a smile for others, it helped her get through her own problems."

<Pose Tracker> Talia has posed.

"It makes sense, no?" Talia asks. She twirls some of linguine around her fork, eating it -- and then she leans forward, and rests her chin on her hand. "I can see how... even when you steal things, ah--it is not harmful. It is a show, no?"

She sighs, a little fondly. "I liked it a lot. And... well, as Katherine Weaver, you were the perfect shopkeeper."

She considers, for a moment, and then her fork drops to her plate. "For me... ah, it isn't an act, no? I do like people. But... it was hard to be close to them. And--it was a rebellion. A way to have a little fun, when I was on my own for a job. I could go talk to someone, meet someone, before I went back to Lubov's mansion and..."

She shakes her head. "...But, I had to hold so much back, and hide so much, no? It was like I was being a specter of the real me."

<Pose Tracker> Seraph Amaranth has posed.

"That's right. As Filles du Temps... making a show, and as Katherine too. I was able to use them as... crutches to help stand up," Amaranth muses as she pauses and watches Talia eat for a moment with a fond smile.

"How is it?" she finds herself asking, sipping from her wine.

But she does quiet down to listen to Talia's side of the tale and... nod.

"... yes. And I know you enjoy meeting and talking to people, so to not be able to really connect... and for me, the Shadow Skean made that doubly difficult for me," Amaranth speaks gently, implying her eyes. It was much harder to try to even get a glimpse of a normal life outside, with no sight.

"But now look at us. We're being truthful, not hiding as a matter of course... just enjoying -- lunch together and trips out to the Moonflow and everything," Amaranth is sure to end it with a lighter note.

<Pose Tracker> Talia has posed.

"It is good!" Talia says, brightly. She wipes her lips with the napkin, and then nods her head. "I can see that, now -- ah, how you are shy, when you're not putting on those personas. But... I like my shy, cute Ammy as much as my seamstress and my phantom thief, no?"

She winks again.

She rests her chin in her hand, and she looks nervous for a moment -- just at hearing an old coping strategy said plainly, especially when it is one that Talia still uses today on acquaintances. She looks up, though, and looks at those eyes.

She smiles, then, and she bobs her head. "It is true. It, ah..." She reaches a hand across the table. "...When I first met you, it was falling on those habits of being charming, to never be close. But, the more I came to know you, it was harder and harder to hide the truth. I wanted you to find out more, even if I was terrified of it. And... I could not have come to this point, to do this sort of thing, without you, no?"

<Pose Tracker> Seraph Amaranth has posed.

Amaranth rather predictably walks into the trap Talia may not have even advertently set as she stammers, "I--I can be more than just shy and cute as myself!" while pouting and... being shy and cute... ah.

That wink is a killer.

"... I think it was because we both tried our hardest with the tools we had that we got here, no?" Amaranth does offer. "I, too... felt something I hadn't ever before. That I wanted to know more too. And--"

She clears her throat, bashfully.

"Well, I was swallowing my fear wholesale when Kaguya nearly killed you, to pull off that kind of stunt. I am glad I did, because... I could not bear to live with the alternative."

<Pose Tracker> Talia has posed.

Talia cracks a bright smile when Amaranth gets flustered and stumbles over her words like that. "You are cute, shy, and many other things!" she teases.

She sits back, though, and thinks about it; she used those tools to survive, and it got her here. After all, if she hadn't been flighty and smiling and so often lying to keep her distance, she might not have survived to be truthful. She never really thought of it that way.

She finishes the pasta off, laying her fork down -- and then she smiles sheepishly, for once. "I did, too. The more I talked to you. And... I thought, when everything happened--when Kaguya was after me... I did not want to die, without getting to see you again."

She smiles a little. "It--ah--it was strange. Realizing I cared so much, no? I wasn't sure what to do with it. It was hard, but... in the best way, no?"

<Pose Tracker> Seraph Amaranth has posed.

"... it's good," Amaranth nods in turn, barely surviving a shy-cute meltdown from Talia's words!! "It is hard, but... I wouldn't want it any other way. When I think about the days I would spend in my tome, about thinking I never wanted to trust ever again because it hurt too much..."

She sucks in a deeper breath, then smiles wider.

"I'm glad I'm recovering here with you. Because I wouldn't be complete without you."

<Pose Tracker> Talia has posed.

"Ammy..." Talia trails off. It hurts, a little, to think of Amaranth in that state -- hurts to think of the times she saw her come close, when she had to hide away from the world. Somehow, things worked out so they would never have to do that.

She pushes her emptied plate forward. The fork clatters against the plate, when she does, and then she stands up.

She walks around the back of Ammy's chair, and wraps her arms about her shoulders, then rests her chin atop the Seraph's head. "I--um." She did this so she could /not/ look at her. She tries to get the words out. "I--"

But they get caught, because that proves too hard to say. Finally, Talia sighs, and then kisses the top of her head. "...I wouldn't either, no?"

<Pose Tracker> Seraph Amaranth has posed.

Amaranth pauses for a moment as she watches Talia stand up and-- go behind her so she can drape her arms around her, in what's now a very familiar position for them. She idly thinks about being the one to rest her chin on Talia's head sometime...

But that's a bit distracted away as Talia speaks, and the redness in her cheeks is all but obvious.

"... love you," Amaranth mumbles a bit tearily, before-- stammering as she picks Talia's plate up and puts it to her own, "G-geez, is that too fast? I--"

Oh no, she's turning plum red now.

"I said a pretty sappy thing just now, didn't I..." Amaranth mumbles as she quietly wishes the plates weren't full of spaghetti sauce so she could hide her face in them.

<Pose Tracker> Talia has posed.

Talia's smile becomes all the softer, and she is regretful then that she has her chin atop Amaranth's head, because she can't see her face. She sighs, softly, and there is a brief pause. She feels, as much as sees, Ammy shifting to move the plates together. And, really, they shouldn't be worried about dishes after that.

"Ammy," she says. "It wasn't too fast."

She stands up a little straighter, then puts her fingers under Amaranth's chin to tip her head up to look down into her eyes. "And it wasn't sappy, no?"

She leans down, then kisses her for a long moment, while upside down; she can balance while doing that easily. Her eyes close, then she pulls back. "I--I like to think, I am better at saying it with what I do than my words, but..."

Her head tilts, still above Ammy. "...I love you too, no?"

<Pose Tracker> Seraph Amaranth has posed.

The way in which Amaranth's eyes positively turn into swirlies when Talia puts her fingers to her chin and look into her...

If Amaranth is able to see the threads of one's life, Talia can totally see the threads in which Amaranth wants to run to the bedroom, curl up with Queen Anastasia, and then kick her legs and squeal about it.

The doki-doki lines...

But that's all forgotten for a moment when she gives her a firm kiss, upside down even! It's a kissing pose Amaranth would never have thought of. "A-ah, um--"

...I love you too, no?

Amaranth is putty now. "Y-yes... I do..."

...

...

"T-t-that's, that's not what I meant! W-waaah!" Amaranth explodes as she realises she could've just as easily misconstrued herself for accepting a proposal. Jumping the gun, jumping the gun!

But she settles afterwards, leaning back to give her a more earnest kiss in turn. "... thank you, Talia."

<Pose Tracker> Talia has posed.

Talia's fingers are still on Ammy's chin, which means that when she starts giggling, she has to raise her /other/ hand to cover her mouth at the 'I do...' and the ensuing flail. "Now, now! I will keep this in mind for the future." She winks.

Even if, really, marriage is perhaps a step further than she wants to consider.

She murmurs with surprise, though -- and she sinks into that kiss, and leans against Ammy all the more. She smiles down at her, and her finger curls some purple hair around her finger. "You, too, no?" she says. She glances, once, at the dishes.

"We can leave those to clean later," she determines. "Right now, there are other, more important things to do!"

She jokes about it confidently, but... her face is flushed, and her expression is too warm. She feels a tingle of amazement that she managed to say such a thing.