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Private The Kiss That Steals Your Soul (M)

Sinbad

Magi
Adventurer of the 7 Seas
Posts
118
Location
Cascade Bay
Age
20
Gender
Male
Species
Human
Occupation
Mercant Coterie Head
Alignment
Chaotic Good
Relationship Status
Stupid Rabbit
Profile
link
Organizer
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@Lavi | February 14th | Redwood Row, Cascade Bay
Content Warning


Valentine's Day was a holiday whose premise caught his eye despite his relative disinterest in romance. Despite his theatrics and flirty nature, rapport with another was never a goal of his. Not only was he married to his ambitions, he lacked that integral naivety required to believe in a relationship. It was a luxury he easily lived without. That said, Valentine was something so easily exploitable. Sinbad could recognize that he was a greedy man and that his lust was an itch he never could fully satisfy. Admittedly, it was one of the few comforts he indulged in, alcohol being a second one.

He had begun his day with not one date planned, but two. The first was a treat that he had impulsively signed up for through Crush and Burn. Its program was too enticing to overlook - a randomized date at a dream location? Sinbad didn't have any faith in its algorithms, but at the very least, he'd meet some new individual and enjoy himself. His date was pleasant for what it was, and it gave him an opportunity to go fishing. It had been far too long since he was able to enjoy such a simple past-time, especially at a beach as nice as the one that they had been at. By the time they decided to draw their time together to an end, he had a good basket of fish and a pleasant mood.

His second date was the product of flirting. By this point in his life, it became a part of his regular vernacular to speak under the guise of an amorous persona. It was the one aspect of himself that he never truly lost, as pathetic as that seemed. Alas, it made for good fun and that was all that mattered at the end of the day. If his teases were requited by whatever person that had captured his interest, then that just made it better. Playful words escalated though a relationship never formed beyond the past few days (he always nipped it early in the bud). Regardless, he always enjoyed himself with his little games. What was a surprise, however, was when a redheaded archivist fell to his charms.

Their relationship began innocuously enough, as coworkers who were something akin to friends. Their pleasantries were far more than simple courtesy, and their coteries offered ample opportunity to run into one another. Their encounters evolved from simple small-chat to drawn-out conversations hidden behind some column or another. The small mention of a vacancy on this day in particular was the only invitation that Sinbad needed. What a coincidence that he would be free by dinner-time, right?

They mutually agreed to keep it simple and to simply dine at his apartment. Their meal would be pasta with the fish that he had caught earlier that morning, a result of some minor, off-handed thing that Lavi once mentioned. Why such a tidbit clung to the cobwebs in his mind was beyond him, but at least Sinbad knew that much would impress his newfound friend. It was unusual, but a small part of himself couldn't help but anticipate the other's arrival. When he heard the knocks at his door, he all but jumped to his feet to answer.

 
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Lavi

D.Gray-man
The 49th Name
Posts
175
Location
Scholar's Coterie
Age
19
Gender
Male
Species
Human
Occupation
Scholar Coterie Head
Alignment
Chaotic Good
Relationship Status
Jellybean
Profile
link
Organizer
link
Directory
link

For all of his easy-going pleasantries and charisma, this was somewhat new territory. This was where the lines blurred and he never knew where to place intention. It was a lot easier to assume that it was just going to be dinner, but Sinbad was a flirt and flirts usually didn't just invite people over for dinner. Which he was fine with, it wouldn't be the first time by a long shot but the fanfare before it was the new bit.

Actually having someone he considered a true friend was new. Lying was easy, pretending to be someone's friend for information or to gain trust was also easy, but having someone who's company he genuinely enjoyed? Less easy, and that was.... he didn't want to think about it. That was way too much thinking for dinner. It could be just dinner, it could be whatever it was going to be. Releasing that tension in his shoulders would be a good start.

He sighed, trying to clear his thoughts as he reached the door. It was Sin, the archivist could loosen up a bit for a night. When Sinbad answered the door, he gave an easy smile. No more visible tension, just a guy happy to see a friend. "Hey. I'm sorry I'm a little late, Allen needed my help with something and it took longer than I thought it would."


 
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Sinbad

Magi
Adventurer of the 7 Seas
Posts
118
Location
Cascade Bay
Age
20
Gender
Male
Species
Human
Occupation
Mercant Coterie Head
Alignment
Chaotic Good
Relationship Status
Stupid Rabbit
Profile
link
Organizer
link



Sinbad was well aware that he was greedy, that he tended to play games with people and their hearts. It was something his younger self wouldn't approve of... well, his hands were stained with far worse. But, usually, his little dances included far fewer steps. There was no flourish like what he had arranged, he was more upfront about the sort of evening he had in mind.

With their dinner, a part of him wouldn't be disappointed if it ended at just that. While he was far too hesitant to call it a friendship, Lavi's presence was one he appreciated. The smile he wore became easier when the other was around, and their conversations were always pleasant. In simpler words, the man was charming. Hopefully his intentions, on a holiday like this, were clear.

"There's no need to apologize, I understand." He drew the door open for Lavi with a flourish, gesturing inside with a wave of an arm. "Important thing is that you're here now!" Sinbad hadn't been worried when Lavi was running a little late given the fact that the other seemed the sort to be upfront about canceling plans.

Admittedly, his apartment wasn't the grandest in Cascade Bay. It had plenty of room for a single person, but it was spartanly decorated. What furniture he did have was lavish, at least. Their meal was already waiting at his small dining table, alongside two (empty) wine glasses. "Fancy something to drink, Lavi? I have a few options if you're up for it."

 
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Lavi

D.Gray-man
The 49th Name
Posts
175
Location
Scholar's Coterie
Age
19
Gender
Male
Species
Human
Occupation
Scholar Coterie Head
Alignment
Chaotic Good
Relationship Status
Jellybean
Profile
link
Organizer
link
Directory
link

He took his scarf off as he entered, glancing around a bit. The food smelled amazing, bringing back memories to a conversation they'd had during a lunch break. Lavi had offhandedly mentioned loving fish, but the archivist had never expected that the other man would ever remember it. Maybe he didn't and it was just coincidence, but he still made a mental note. After all, he wasn't the only person in the world with a good memory.

Over thinking it yet again. It was a force of habit to analyze, to pick apart actions and words. That had been part of his job as a Bookman, but this was something Bookman would've berated him for from day one. A connection that was only possible because of the world surrounding them.

At the mention of wine, his thoughts briefly recalled a night not too long ago spent in a bar with Yu. God, there had been too much wine that night. There'd be an attempt not to repeat that, but a part of him still felt that the nights would end similarly despite how much wine he drank. "Sure, what are the options?"


 
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Sinbad

Magi
Adventurer of the 7 Seas
Posts
118
Location
Cascade Bay
Age
20
Gender
Male
Species
Human
Occupation
Mercant Coterie Head
Alignment
Chaotic Good
Relationship Status
Stupid Rabbit
Profile
link
Organizer
link



Dinner was a simple task, something mindless and familiar as his mind wandered. There was the fish that he had caught earlier that day, paired with shrimp and mussels from the market. Would he like that? It was rare that he put so much effort into an endeavor of this kind, yet he had for this date in particular. Whether it was due to the holiday air or the man in question, Sinbad couldn't find it in himself to care much.

It was the sort of night where, regardless of where their evening went, they'd enjoy themselves. At the very least, that was his goal. It was a habit to gauge Lavi's reactions, to see which side of himself the other preferred most. Polite and nice as when they had met? Charming and flirty? Either way, his smile was less of a mask and more him as he pulled back Lavi's seat for him. He trailed his fingers along the chair's back with a quiet hum in regard to the question.

"Wine mostly, some white ones and a couple of rosé. Frascati or Muscadet would go well with the fish." Alcohol was always a pleasant addition to a date, something to ease the mind and make his mask easier to fake. "Though, if you'd prefer, I have some rum. I can toss some pineapple on it to make it fancy, too," Sinbad added with a wink as he padded off towards the kitchen. A part of him was eagerly curious to know where Lavi's tastes lingered, though more than just his taste in beverages. "Enjoyed yourself today?"

 
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Lavi

D.Gray-man
The 49th Name
Posts
175
Location
Scholar's Coterie
Age
19
Gender
Male
Species
Human
Occupation
Scholar Coterie Head
Alignment
Chaotic Good
Relationship Status
Jellybean
Profile
link
Organizer
link
Directory
link

Alcohol was something he didn't have too much experience with, but he could recall a time where he'd had to tag along on a wine tasting with Bookman. He'd been too young to taste any of it, but he could vaguely recall scents to go along with the names. They had been at the side of a prince, discussing the current strategy that they intended to use for an upcoming battle.

'Jin' at the time had been quick to tell Bookman later how it was ridiculous to be tasting wine at a time like this, but arrogant princes made arrogant kings who won battles but lost wars. It was another lesson that he had to learn, or so Bookman had said.

At the idea of pineapple and rum he gave Sinbad a small grin, "Rum sounds really good, actually." He took off his jacket before taking a seat, laying it carefully in his lap. An emerald eye scanned over the dish, already feeling his stomach growl. "This smells and looks so good, you're spoiling me."

He hummed a bit, looking back to Sinbad when he asked about his day. "I was teaching Allen some Chinese, which was actually a lot more fun than it sounds. How's your day been so far?"


 
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Sinbad

Magi
Adventurer of the 7 Seas
Posts
118
Location
Cascade Bay
Age
20
Gender
Male
Species
Human
Occupation
Mercant Coterie Head
Alignment
Chaotic Good
Relationship Status
Stupid Rabbit
Profile
link
Organizer
link



His first sip of alcohol had been at the measly age of fourteen. He was in a frozen tundra far from home, masking the aches for a dead mother and abandoned country with the festives of a celebration. It had tasted bitter, but he gulped it down for the way it burned the back of his throat. It made the party more vibrant and that alone made it worth it. It was only until after Sindria sunk beneath the ocean's waves that alcohol became a constant companion.

It was easier to sleep at night when his eyelids were heavy and his body languid. Even when they haunted his dreams, alcohol tempered the edge of regret and guilt. Wine brought back some of the light that had ebbed away, even temporarily. At this point, it became a habit to drink a few cups, especially with pleasant company.

"I see that you're a man of good taste," Sinbad teased as he poured out the drinks in question. He made quick work of making them, adding a slice of pineapple to the rims of both glasses as promised. "Am I? Well, today seems like the sort of day to spoil someone." It was a good sign, at least, one that stirred butterflies. Taking a premature sip of his rum was a good enough distraction from the unfamiliar sensation.

"Chinese? A language of some sort from your world, Lavi?" He sat down the glasses on the table, replacing them with the wine glasses that had once sat there. When he saw the jacket still sitting on Lavi's lap, he courteously held out a hand as an offer to hang it elsewhere. "It was pleasant! I got to go fishing at that one space resort, the beach there is lovely."

 
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Lavi

D.Gray-man
The 49th Name
Posts
175
Location
Scholar's Coterie
Age
19
Gender
Male
Species
Human
Occupation
Scholar Coterie Head
Alignment
Chaotic Good
Relationship Status
Jellybean
Profile
link
Organizer
link
Directory
link

The smile he wore was nowhere near forced, it came naturally for the first time in what felt like so long. It was almost shy in a way, something he still wasn't quite used to but not fighting to hide as much as he may have with anyone else. The sort of day to spoil someone isn't lost on him, picking up his glass as he watched Sin take a sip. "True, true." He hummed, taking a sip as well once the drink was placed in front of him.

It wasn't like he'd ever truly celebrated Valentine's Day before. At sixteen, just before Lavi had joined the Order there had been one girl named Analysé. He gave her a box of chocolates, a rose and put his French to good use but that had been it.

Not that Bookman was too pleased with the display as it was, but it had all merely been to get on her good side. She wasn't someone he had considered a friend, not while chained to his work. Not while he was Deak. With Sinbad and how things had changed since then, it'd be good to have a stress-free night.

"It is, he spent time in China but he didn't learn as much as he'd wanted to there." When the other man offered to take his jacket, Lavi paused for a moment before handing it to him. It was his uniform jacket, something he still rarely found himself not wearing despite there being no Order in Pandora. It was bulletproof, fireproof, nearly Akuma-proof too.

It was a shield, but one he could set aside for a night. "That sounds really nice, I'm glad you got to go there." There was a small moment where he imagined Sinbad on the beaches, that same bright grin on his face before he quickly shook himself out of it. "Is our dinner the fish you caught?" Judging by how good it all looked and smelled, he had a gut feeling that it was fresh and it only made his mouth water more.


 
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Sinbad

Magi
Adventurer of the 7 Seas
Posts
118
Location
Cascade Bay
Age
20
Gender
Male
Species
Human
Occupation
Mercant Coterie Head
Alignment
Chaotic Good
Relationship Status
Stupid Rabbit
Profile
link
Organizer
link



Reading others was a specialty, though Lavi had always been a bit of a puzzle. Much like himself, the red was talented at burying whatever emotions he felt beneath ironclad masks. The smiles were always polite, well-meaning, but never earnest. It was a small part of the appeal, trying to dig his fingers beneath the persona that the man wore. Seeing the soft expression he wore now, something genuine and perhaps even bashful, was electrifying.

It was his first Valentine's Day, but he packed it full of entertainment to make up for the years he apparently missed out. The first date had evolved to a fishing trip, though it was far from unenjoyable. Now he was helping himself to a tasty meal with an attractive date. The way he caught Lavi staring was promising too. Small glances and looks that betrayed how equally excited he was.

"China? It sounds like an interesting place." The name was vaguely familiar, the sort of word that would be heard in the far east of his world. "I assume that you have been there youself, Lavi?" Sinbad asked as he gingerly took the coat. He paused as he brushed his fingers over its top, quietly marveling the black material. Whatever it was, it was unlike anything he has seen in this realm or his own. He took only a moment to do so, however, and afterward stepped away again to properly hang the coat on a nearby rack. From the way Lavi held it, it was obviously important enough for him to treat it with the same level of respect.

Once it was all said and done, he was quick to return to his seat to finally sit down. "Freshly caught and homecooked." It was a shameless brag accompanied with a wink to boot. Why wouldn't he take pride in a meal that he went to such lengths to prepare? "It was an island in Elysium, small but interesting. You'd like it there." It was merely small talk, but he had always been a conversationalist, especially during dinner-dates such as tonight.

 
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Lavi

D.Gray-man
The 49th Name
Posts
175
Location
Scholar's Coterie
Age
19
Gender
Male
Species
Human
Occupation
Scholar Coterie Head
Alignment
Chaotic Good
Relationship Status
Jellybean
Profile
link
Organizer
link
Directory
link

Seeing Sinbad hold his coat was... strange, in a way. It felt like two worlds crossing that should never be. None of this would really... actually be happening if this was home, and it was hard not to think about despite the way he managed to relax his shoulders as he shrugged. "Yeah, I spent about two years there when I was thirteen. I learned enough Chinese to be fluent in half a year of being there." After that it had been a year in France, and then at sixteen he'd joined the Order.

For as much as the words would've been a brag in anyone else's mouth, his eidetic memory didn't make it an incredible feat. It was purely memorization, being taught the basics and building from there as much as anyone else would only never forgetting nor needing to relearn anything. Handy, as always, but nothing fancy.

He took another drink, gently setting the glass back down afterwards. "I've always wanted to go to Elysium. Feels like there's so much left to learn there. I'm glad you had fun though, how long's it been since you've gone fishing?"


 
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Sinbad

Magi
Adventurer of the 7 Seas
Posts
118
Location
Cascade Bay
Age
20
Gender
Male
Species
Human
Occupation
Mercant Coterie Head
Alignment
Chaotic Good
Relationship Status
Stupid Rabbit
Profile
link
Organizer
link



Lavi's body posture slackened, looking more at ease as their conversation continued. It was a simple story, something that perhaps would have been mundane to any other. Spending two years in an unrecognizable country, learning a language he never heard of. But as he took his seat, Sinbad couldn't help but feel intrigued. Just as it once was with the blonde man from so long ago, he wanted to hear more of a world he's never seen before. "Fluent in under a year? Color me impressed, Lavi. You should teach me some sometimes," it was a silent invitation to spend more time at some later date.

Aside from the Toran language and dialect differences throughout the nations, his world had a common language. Throughout his travels, he rarely encountered people whom couldn't understand him and vise versa. It was convenient for sure, though the prospect of learning other tongues was so interesting. A cherry on top of Lavi's company. The fact that he had mastered something like a language was more than just impressive. He had taken months to learn how to read and write one that he spoke.

He swirled his drink in his cup, careful not to slosh the liquid out. It burned down the back of his throat, a pleasant sensation that would hopefully numb any concerns in the back of his mind. He hummed at the question, one manicured finger tapping against the glass. "Aside from this morning? It's been a few weeks or so." Given how close his apartment was to the bay, he had frequent opportunities to slip away to the waters.

SIn wore a charming smile as he leaned forwards in his chair, the rim tilting against his lip. "It's relaxing to sit back and work with a fishing pole," it was a blatant tease, striking closer to what his intentions were for the evening.

 
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Lavi

D.Gray-man
The 49th Name
Posts
175
Location
Scholar's Coterie
Age
19
Gender
Male
Species
Human
Occupation
Scholar Coterie Head
Alignment
Chaotic Good
Relationship Status
Jellybean
Profile
link
Organizer
link
Directory
link

While he didn't always consider himself the best teacher, the idea of teaching Sinbad a new language was an interesting one. "I could teach you any language you'd want. I had to learn a few while travelling, but my memory made it a lot easier." Spending more time with him was always a bonus, but the exorcist wasn't about to say that out loud. Not yet, anyway.

Knowing certain languages had all been part of being a Bookman, and it felt a little odd to be speaking of it more casually. It had been his duty, one he was currently in the middle of ignoring. Second chances were dangerous for people like Lavi, for people like exorcists. Hope had always been deadly to just about anyone, but particularly for them it scarred impossibly deep.

The teasing was quick to knock him out of a darker line of thinking, smirking a bit despite himself. Just like that, Sinbad was capturing his attention again so easily. It was exhilarating, it was freeing. "I can imagine. Sounds like it might be more fun with another person to join you, though. Makes the relaxing part all the more enjoyable when you get to watch."


 
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Sinbad

Magi
Adventurer of the 7 Seas
Posts
118
Location
Cascade Bay
Age
20
Gender
Male
Species
Human
Occupation
Mercant Coterie Head
Alignment
Chaotic Good
Relationship Status
Stupid Rabbit
Profile
link
Organizer
link



Eidetic memory. Lavi had mentioned it once before in the admittedly short time that they knew one another. While he could certainly imagine how much easier it was to learn a language with one, that doesn't detract from the effort it took to still memorize it. Rules that had to be reviewed, dictionaries read, words ingrained, that was still a heady effort in his eyes. "Let's start with Chinese and go from there, hm?"

As pleasant as the small-talk was, as a conversation with Lavi was, food and talk was quickly losing his interest. From the look in the other's eye, Sinbad could easily guess that the same could be said for him. It was honestly perhaps one of the cheesiest innuendos he had ever said, but it was enough to catch Lavi's attention. Now that he had it squarely on him, he didn't intend to lose it to more mundane pursuits.

"Why just watch?" He drawled as he sat down his glass before finally taking a bite of his food. He wore a thoughtful smile as he tapped the prongs of his fork against his bottom lip, the expression turning more amused before finally asking, "What about this, how do you say let's fish together in Chinese, Lavi?" More of the awful innuendo, though he had an inkling that it'd hook the redhead's attention.

 
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Lavi

D.Gray-man
The 49th Name
Posts
175
Location
Scholar's Coterie
Age
19
Gender
Male
Species
Human
Occupation
Scholar Coterie Head
Alignment
Chaotic Good
Relationship Status
Jellybean
Profile
link
Organizer
link
Directory
link

Watching Sinbad tap the fork against his lip, the redhead bit his own for a moment before trying to focus on the meal. He took a bite, but the other still held his attention far too well. For a moment, he merely hummed contently at the fish. It was just as good as it smelled, making sure to swallow before speaking. He smirked, leaning against the table for a moment. "Yīqǐ diàoyú ba."

The innuendo itself was awful, but it was still endearing all the same. He wasn't going to tease him for that, not just yet. For now, he was more content to let the flirting be as it was. Tomorrow on the other hand, was another day. Letting fishing jokes be a thing between them for a while seemed fitting, all things considered.

"It is the perfect day for fishing." His voice was playful, taking another bite of fish with a small grin. "Some call it tradition on a day like this." While Lavi rarely actually got too many chances to enjoy most holidays, this one seemed like it was going to go a lot more smoothly than previous years.


 
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