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 Loitering [closed]

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Rainy

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PostSubject: Re: Loitering [closed]   Tue May 10, 2016 8:35 pm

A sudden tension seemed to fill the air after Ria's seemingly innocent question. The girl lifted her cup and drained the remaining liquid as Rohan answered, although his eyes appeared to lose a bit of their sparkle and he drew himself in. In an effort to clear the air, she put on a smile and joked, "Well, I absolutely love watermelon. And hey, what's not to love about fried chick--"

Forgetting what she was holding, Ria had flung her hands out in a wide gesture, managing to knock her cup into a passing waitress. It fell from her hands and crashed onto the floor, shattering pieces everywhere. She inhaled sharply before beginning to apologize rapidly, stooping to pick up broken chunks.

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PostSubject: Re: Loitering [closed]   Tue May 10, 2016 8:40 pm

Rohan didn't seem to understand what she was saying. His Scottish upbringing made him oblivious to the cultural reference she was joking about, the Southern American foods she was explaining, and he raised his eyebrow for a moment. Of course, he got the joke after a while; or, rather, laughed as she spilled the cup on the waitress. So perfect was the timing, so awkward the delivery of the moment. He, of course, went down to help, or at least tried to with the little remaining shards that were left when he did. Of course, the waitress wasn't too pleased, and made sure to note that Ria was still paying for the drink and the cup.

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PostSubject: Re: Loitering [closed]   Sat May 14, 2016 9:23 pm

Embarrassed, Ria muttered apologies the whole time she was crouched, her hands filled with the shards of her cup. She stood and set all the pieces on her plate, shaking her head and trying to fight off the urge to back out of hanging out with Rohan. She hadn't spent time with someone outside of school in so long, she'd forgotten how to act normally, and she was more accident-prone than she remembered being.

When everything had been cleaned up at last and the grumpy waitress had left again, the girl collapsed into her seat again and buried her face in her hands with a groan.
"I'm so sorry," she said, her voice muffled.

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PostSubject: Re: Loitering [closed]   Sat May 14, 2016 9:53 pm

Rohan eyed her, the way she collpased in her seat with her face in her hands, and he kept a smile the whole time. It was a very observant smile, an agape smirk as if he was still waiting to see what would happen yet; it was very absentminded but not unlike him to keep on his face. His dark eyes were wide and he closed his lips for a moment. "I like you," was his reply, and he took another sip of his tea, suddenly tilting it back and taking a big gulp. When he lowered it, it was gone. "Good tea," he concluded, sniffing a bunching his shoulders together, giving a sidelined glance to where the waitresses convened as he hushed his voice. "Nae the kind yuh act'vly savor, but I'll be here again."

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PostSubject: Re: Loitering [closed]   Sun May 15, 2016 8:34 pm

A wave of relief rolled through her when he said he liked her. Slowly, Ria removed her hands from her face, trying not to let her relief show on her face too much, only a small smile showing her gratitude. She continued to lean on her elbows, watching him finish his drink silently. The embarrassment of what had happened was still sharp in her mind, and it would return every time she saw or talked with Rohan, but she brushed it off, trying to ignore how painfully awkward it was.

Eagerly, she agreed with him.
"It wasn't quite as strong as what my dad makes, but it was nice," she said. She focused on his still-whole cup, attempting to ignore the pieces of hers in her peripheral vision.

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PostSubject: Re: Loitering [closed]   Sun May 15, 2016 8:44 pm

"Your dad's a tea kinda guy?" Rohan raised his eyebrow. Now done with his tea, he clattered it to and fro on the table, trying to make a song but not really gaining much of a beat. It was promising, but never fully sounded like music. "Didn't think th'were many Yankee tea drinkers." Then again, he was in a Yankee cafe. He straightened up, and raised a hand to the waitress, who came over. There, he dug into his pocket for his wallet, still unusued to the grainy texture of a dollar bill. They felt so dirty, like they just came off a hooker's asshole. "Here," he said, pulling out some extra dollars. "For my girl's mistake." The waitress accepted shyly, and he stood with a smile to Ria. "C'mon."

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PostSubject: Re: Loitering [closed]   Sun May 15, 2016 8:56 pm

Ever so gracious, the girl ducked her head sheepishly and muttered a gentle thank you to the waitress as she stood, stepping away from the table. Stiffly, she moved around Rohan and led the way out the door, waiting for him to fall in step beside her before speaking again.

"My dad used to be a coffee drinker, like other 'Yankees'," Ria said. Her hands tugged the sleeves of her blazer down and held them, her shoulders tightening in a slight shrug. A light breeze pulled at the ends of her curls, brushing them away from her neck and shoulders, causing her to shiver slightly. "It was what my mom drank before she, ah... Before she passed. At least, that's what he tells me. I don't think he's touched coffee since." She kept her voice upbeat, brushing easily past the stickier aspects of her anecdote. It was a matter of fact to her.

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PostSubject: Re: Loitering [closed]   Sun May 15, 2016 9:14 pm

It didn't seem to phase him when she mentioned her mother's passing. It seemed nothing made a situation awkward to Rohan, whether it be the accidental breaking of a cup or the admittance of a dead parent. He kept his eyes unflinchingly forward. "Mi mum loves tea," he said over the whip of an evening breeze. "Shih made a hobby of collecting thuh things, them tea leaves. Shih grows them on our farm, an' after working on all the other stuff, she'll check them a'night." Rohan looked up at the stars, making a quick mental note mid-sentence of how they were the same in North Dakota as they were back home. It made him pause, but just briefly. "Shih don't sell much, but shih loves it."

The streets of Rosebury were quaint and silent that night, a purple outreach of dusky night bathing them, only to be cut by the bowl-shaped range of streetlights. Each moment he breathed, Rohan could see his breath, and he put a hand around Ria's shoulder. "It's gettin' cold out here," he remarked. "I heard it gets cold up here, and e'n though it's summer, I prepared real right. Got three different coats, I feel 'ike a rich Paris girl." He laughed softly at his own joke; it was a habit he picked up from his friends, from nights in the sidestreets of Edinburgh bouncing quips off each other.

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PostSubject: Re: Loitering [closed]   Sun May 15, 2016 9:37 pm

Captivated once again, Ria watched him, her lips parted slightly and her eyebrows raised in polite wonder, gazing at him as he told her of his mother's collecting. It was an interesting thing to grow, tea, and the growing of tea wasn't something she'd thought often of. It felt like thinking about how chicken nuggets were made, only much more normal and less gross.

She dragged herself from her thoughts to find him looking at the stars. They were beautiful out here in the middle of nowhere. Tiny pinpricks in the darkness, they shone like beacons of hope. At his hand around her shoulder, she tensed slightly, glancing at it before returning her attention to his face. He was right, it was colder than she had anticipated. While the days were warming up, the nights still dropped low. She chuckled at his joke, hugging her arms close to herself and wishing she had brought a jacket with her into this strange, dark village that was lit by streetlights and the rapidly disappearing last rays of sun.
"It's also getting kind of late, isn't it?" Ria asked without checking her phone. It was probably barely 8 and she was only getting nervous. "Maybe we should head back." She didn't want to admit how cold she was; truthfully, she could've spent the rest of the night talking with Rohan.

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PostSubject: Re: Loitering [closed]   Sun May 15, 2016 9:46 pm

"That's the plan," he said, keeping her close to him. Finally someone passed, an old man with a stumbling walk, whose big coat covered his shoulders. At once, without even thinking, he got an idea. The old man and Rohan exchanged brief glances, and as the two passed, the old man handed his coat to Rohan. "Oh my, thank you!" Rohan said in a peculiar surprise. It was met with no audible answer over the wind, however, and a moment later Rohan handed the coat to Ria.

"He mumbled something about you looking cold," the boy said, putting it around her arms. "Real nice people, you Americans."

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PostSubject: Re: Loitering [closed]   Tue May 17, 2016 9:11 pm

It was a few paces before the girl realized Rohan had stopped and was having an exchange with someone they'd been passing. Surprised, she watched the man hand Rohan his coat and walk away. As the old man wandered off, Ria tried to catch something weird in his expression or eyes, wondering if, somehow, Rohan had managed to persuade the man to give up his jacket. After all, he must've been wearing the jacket for a reason. But she didn't see anything and accepted the jacket wordlessly, watching the boy before her as he wrapped it around her cold shoulders.

"That was awfully kind," she murmured, staring at the spot behind her friend where the man had vanished into the night. She remained in awe for just a moment before snapping out of it, finding her charm once more. "I wonder if we can find him to give it back later." What an adventure that would be.

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PostSubject: Re: Loitering [closed]   Tue May 17, 2016 9:31 pm

"It's a small town," Rohan told her, not seeming to worry about it. There was a frontness to his gaze, and he never once looked back at the man. There was something final to it. "He'll turn up eventually."
The school gates approached them as titans of dark steel, creaking with each hushed whisper of a breeze as they passed their guardianship, walking into the fern-sidled passage into campus. It was dark then, the sun having given way to the echoing silence of night. It was almost eerily silent; Rohan let out a cough to make some noise across the empty courtyard.
The student dorms were in an eastern direction. The initiate dorms were in the north. Rohan eyed their cross roads, looking over to his new home with a wink of a glare and shoving his hands in his pockets. "Y'know," he remarked, almost uneasily but with a smile to say otherwise. "I could show yuh my dorm if y'dlike. Get yuh acquainted with how these things are set up. It's real nice up there, kinda a sight to behold."

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PostSubject: Re: Loitering [closed]   Tue May 17, 2016 9:45 pm

Despite the cold pressing against her from all sides, causing goosebumps to rise across her thinly covered legs and sending shivers across Ria's skin, there was something captivating about Rohan's company. He was a dark stranger beside her, escorting her mostly silent across the grounds. She was almost grateful for his quiet; it made her feel comfortable, almost like a signal that let her know they were comfortable enough to not talk, that this wasn't tense or awkward despite the events of their cafe meeting.

The initiate dorms were one way and the boy's new dorms were the other. She hadn't realized how badly she didn't want to say goodnight until that moment. It was still somewhat early in the evening. With nothing exciting promised for the next day aside from the steadily-piling schoolwork, the offer posed by Rohan sounded tantalizing. She would be able to see what the regular house dorms looked like before being Placed herself, and it meant the night wouldn't have to end earlier than she was ready for. Nodding in a calculated way, Ria said, "I would like that."

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PostSubject: Re: Loitering [closed]   Tue May 17, 2016 9:58 pm

She said yes. He looked at her for a moment, and kept an arm around her shoulder, shooting a grin toward the dorm buildings. They lay lit up in their respective house colors, silent in the dark summer night. Rohan pointed them toward the autumn building, the auburn one. "I'll lead the way, then." He said. It was a short walk up the pavilion, thankfully uncluttered by curfew officers and security guards. They made it to the doorway and he swiped them in, leading her up the stairs to where his dorm allegedly was.

"Truth is," he said, "I han't been here nae're. This is my first time op'ning the door." The key still had a bright pick tag on it, affirming he was indeed the benefactor, a Mister Rohan McCaig. He put the new, silvery key into the lock, and turned the door with a click.

No one was there, but he saw the closed doors of his roommates, the muffled sounds of music or talking or whatnot. Rohan looked around the commonroom with a smile, one that stayed as he pressed a finger to his lips and signaled her to his room. To the dark doorway he walked, and flipping on the light, saw his new space. It was bigger than his room back home, which was hardly a private space at all. The twin bed sat undressed in the corner, and his suitcases were piled against the wall. It seemed they moved his stuff on their own. A desk sat under a window, wood shining in glossy lamination, an effect of the pale moonlight.

He smiled wide, and gave an unceremonious plop on the bed. "I love it," he announced simply, bouncing on the springy mattress.

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PostSubject: Re: Loitering [closed]   Fri May 20, 2016 4:19 pm

His first time in the dorm, and he was supposed to be showing her everything. Ria felt a strangeness in her gut. It was the weird feeling someone got when they showed up somewhere, but knew they weren't supposed to be there, only nobody was explicitly telling her she had to leave. She walked closely to Rohan, following his steps exactly through the dorm. It was open though tight, with furniture in what appeared to be a common area with couches and a television. She barely had a chance to take it in before the boy was signaling for her to remain silent and follow him. Some of the anxiety melted away as she felt like a kid, playing spies again. Carefully, she stepped after him, clutching at the stranger's jacket around her shoulders.

Upon entering the room Rohan had just lit with a flick of the switch, the girl's previous excitement fell. It was anticlimactic. This room, although private and meant for just one person, was plain and undressed, a mark of its uniformity, manufactured by the school for every student. Vaguely, Ria wondered if students were allowed to decorate it however they pleased. It seemed boring and small like this. A glance to her friend showed that he was rather pleased with it and, not wanting to drag him down, she lifted her eyebrows and gave a small, appraising smile.
"I suppose it is rather nice," she commented idly.

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