Of all the festive seasons, Thanksgiving and Christmas would make up high on his list. Simply because it was supposed to be a season where families gather together and meet up to share their stories, bonding over it with laughter and elation. Well, at least it used to be that way for him. Julian didn't have a big family, it was only his parents, him and his elder sister and his younger sister. The five of them were able to make up the absence for plenty though, which was the reason why the Nephilim never felt like anything was lesser when they gather together. Unfortunately, this year wouldn't make it possible for him. He couldn't go back to England because he had a whole shift two days ago and the flights bound there were all sold out, leaving him no choice but to spend his Christmas in Evermore. He had no problem with the city, but who wouldn't want to go home for Christmas? He misses his parents and Christmas was one of the times he could actually get to see his elder sister who is otherwise, staying in Australia. 

And ever since the tragedy that took place a few years ago, it's the only time they were able to check in the Nephilim to see if he's doing fine as he says he is. He's guessing that he'll have to settle and FaceTime his family for this year, and hope that his schedule can be cleared out next year. While he was busy cleaning the cabinet where he stored his bow and arrows alongside other weapons in case anything happens, he realized that he's been tapping his feet against the carpeted floor for over half an hour. He wasn't usually this jittery when he's alone, so he stopped whatever he was doing and tried to figure out the reason for it. Until he realized that the living room was pretty much cold to the core, which was unusual because he was sure he had turned on the heater before. With a rag still in his left hand, Julian went over to where the heater was located and crouched down to its level to check if it's working. 

The lights weren't on and he thought he must've turned it off accidentally. Another unfortunate case for the poor Nephilim who had to endure a cold night while being alone for Christmas, it wasn't turned off, rather, it was broken. A heaved sigh escaped the male as he got up and realized that he will have to rush to the stores to get a heater unless he wanted to spend his nights cold. He knew there was no way the stores would be open on Christmas Eve, and even if they were, the chances were likely high to know that it's been sold out. Yet that didn't prevent Julian from wrapping his coat around him and rushed out. At least, his car was slightly warm. And that's probably the alternative for his place to sleep tonight or for a few nights if there was no more heaters.

 That was the case for Julian who was still diligently searching for a heater for about an hour already. Sighing to himself, he exited the last shop which told him sorry because they were sold out. Just his luck. "Goddammit, Julian… you're full of bad luck at this time of the year, aren't you?" he grumbled to himself and found himself slumping against the bench while listening to Deck The Halls With Boughs of Holly blaring from god knows which shop. 

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She chuckled under her breath when he said he had essentially just realized he was a workaholic “I feel like we all realize that at one point or another and then we wonder if there were better things we could have been doing with our time” in her experience, there wasn’t really, when she was working, she was trying to help make people’s lives better in one way or another, that seemed to beat out sitting at home and pondering random things. Perhaps she might feel different if her apartment back home didn’t have just her and her dog but what was the point in dwelling on things that were unlikely to change “Besides it seems like planes actually do make you happy so” she shrugged slightly.

She arched her brow at him for a moment when he question her choice of vacation “Don’t knock it until you try it angel boy” she quipped back with a mock roll of her eyes “I would probably take the time to work on the home improvements I’ve been putting off” though if she did have to go somewhere for a vacation she would choose a cruise because it had everything she wanted in one place “Any vacation which cuts down on the time spent getting there and expands the amount of time I get to enjoy it sounds good to me” she grinned slightly “Besides I like waterslides and they always have the ones with the clear tubes” was that surprising for someone like her? What even was her stereotype “Why, what did you have me pegged as?” she questioned with an interested quirk of her brow.

They had been working alongside one another for a while now so they’d covered the usual small talk work things pretty fast, they chatted about other things too but this was the first time she’d actually seen him outside of the hangar in a while, it was kinda weird not seeing him wearing overalls “You do love to remind me that I’m completely out of my element often” she jested with a playful glare, still she was doing her best to be as involved with the project as she practically could and frankly, she was enjoying it, the practical involvement only made her feel more invested in the project success and the company wasn’t bad either. When he prompted her to smile though she glared at him in an unimpressed manner “Do I look like some smiling monkey to you?” she questioned with an expectant gaze in his direction but after seeing the way his eyes practically became puppy dog eyes she did relent with a small smile “Well bonus, I’ll even let you choose which channel or movies we watch, because I can never decide which looks best and always end up picking a stupid one” she grumbled slightly because she seemed cursed when it came to that.

“The COO of Everectronics enjoys drinking wine, shocker, such a scandal” she responded a little sarcastically at his teasing “Sometime tells me I could actually drink you and your tall frame under the table Lockhart” she challenged with a soft grin as they finished the shopping and headed to check out the basket. “Warnings?” she responded almost with a gasp to her voice “I’m not sure I like your tone or what you’re implying” she chided with a shake of her head “Maybe you should come with a warning, you look like you’d be the type to faceplant or sing while drunk” she joked as they headed out of the store and into the evening “Give me your phone” she instructed as she held her hand out to him “I’ll give you my number so we can message about the address and you’d better show up because I’m going to promise Cloud a new friend and he will be mad at me if you don’t” she pressed her lips together and maybe she wanted him to come.

"I feel like that there may have been few other things I should've spared my time doing but at the same time, I don't regret what I've done. I'm living my best life right now and everything is good." Julian couldn't be bothered to care much regarding regrets because there was simply no room for him on that issue. No use in it, right? What we could do, however, is try to make sure he got the chance to review it again for the future. "Do you do that?" he asked curiously, peeking his head to the side with his eyes staring into hers, "Do you think you could've done far better things?" Could he have done a far better job at that? "Yeah, planes do make me happy. I've been staring at them ever since I was a child and suffice to say, it's a dream come true to be given the chance to delve deeper into the field" It's a long term occupation so he couldn't imagine many were eager to join in the pack but he was one of them. One of those who stuck long around too. 

The nickname came out of nowhere and he had to admit, while he was visibly floored and taken aback by it, the stupid grin on his lips indicated that he was more than delighted to get that reaction out of her. "Angel boy, huh? Are you going to call me that now from now on?" Technically he is one, no? Hearing her description about his ideal vacation getaway had him pursing his lips, what would his ideal one be? Did he even have one? He was sure he did. Once upon a time, he too had strong desires like that. Honeymoon places, etc. Name it. "Nothing bad. Cruising doesn't give me the first ding when I thought of you. Perhaps you give off the casual laid-back vibe now, but before I would've thought you may venture to Bali or Maldives." Meanwhile, Julian would be more than happy to opt for places where he could do a lot of the locks activities at, namely hiking. 

They knew each other well enough to know the other was still comfortable with them, at least that's what the Nephilim perceived it to be but considering how Nora expressed no distaste to it, it was most probably right to say it. "It is fun to tease you, I admit, guilty as charged" he raised both his hand suppose in defense with a sheepish grin, okay when she was being like that, she got cuter. Initially, Julian would've panicked at how she gave him an unimpressed glare but judging from how her muscles went around and had her smiling, the Nephilim was more inclined to give him the same amount back. "But you are smiling, prettily too" he chuckled, there was no kidding when it comes down to describing how insanely attractive Eleanora Nordstroem can be. He swore everyone at work also praised her for both her attractiveness that only gradually grew stronger when she worked just as diligently. No wonder he could see a few pair of eyes lingering by. One of them being his.

 "I couldn't remember the last time I actually get to watch something on Netflix or anything." It was an honest answer, Julian didn't have as much free time as he once did. "Look at you go, Miss I-Will-Break-Your-Kneecaps-If-You-So-Much-As-Disrespect-Me… maybe. But who's to say I won't drag you into a much fairer fight when it comes down today drinking hm?" He wasn't the best but he could hold himself steadily. Having that may even prove to be another highlight of his night. Why not? "Oh yes, I come with a warning, I'll end up making you rethink everything" he cooed playfully and waited for her to finish her purchase. 

He complied without asking anything else when he was asked for his phone, and had a wry smirk by the time he was retrieving his phone from her, "Oh look, I scored." He had a softer grin when she said Cloud would be upset if he didn't come, "You could've just said you wanted me to be there too, I'd be more than happy to cheer you up. You and Cloud" he mused coolly and made his way back to where he parked his car, but not before waving at her, "I'll see you in a while then." He still needed to take a few other things; clothes, for starters. 

“Sometimes, sometimes not, depends on the day” she responded candidly to his question about whether she could have done better things “I mean there was a point in my life where I wanted to study to cure cancer so” she shrugged slightly, overambitious perhaps but she did like the idea of being able to contribute something truly meaningful to the world. “Well then it sounds like you found your thing” she responded with a soft smile on her lips because it was such a rare but special thing when people really connected with their career and it felt like more than just a way to earn a living “Hold onto it, not many people find it” she nodded slightly, she wasn’t sure she completely had hers yet but she felt like she was on the right path.

Seeing that stupid grin on his lips almost made her want to recall the nickname she had used without even thinking much about it “Depends on whether you keep acting like it’s the best thing you ever heard or not” she responded with a cautious gaze, he was definitely interesting to be around, always making silly jokes and getting on her nerves just enough to get under her skin without making her totally snap. They had a somewhat lighthearted working relationship, something which was surprising to her given how serious she usually was about her work. “Well I suppose you wouldn’t be too far off the mark with either of those, I’d definitely pick somewhere warmer than Evermore anyway” she laughed, wasn’t hard to do that all things considered “But it’s making the time that I struggle with” taking a full 2 weeks off was basically a massive no with her schedule.

She looked at him with a somewhat surprised expression when he said she was smiling prettily which actually made her smile a little harder, her gaze dropping before she laughed a little embarrassed for the compliment “I need to stop making your life so easy” she commented in a disgruntled tone because somehow it was easy to him to make her feel flustered which she certainly wasn’t used to, most people weren’t even on her wavelength. “Well, today you officially get free rein, which basically means I don’t have to pick something out” she grinned slightly at the way he described her as someone who would break kneecaps, which she nodded to because he wasn’t wrong “You can definitely try, though I don’t fight with kid gloves I hope you know” and considering that she enjoyed a glass of wine in her evenings she wasn’t out fighting crime, she knew how to hold her drink.

His line about a warning made her laugh slightly, her gaze lifting to his “Does that line ever actually work?” she questioned actually curious to know about his love life, he seemed pretty awkward and nervous at times so she wasn’t sure how he would ever just be able to approach someone and flirt with them. When she handed back his phone she rolled her eyes at his response “You literally could have got my number from your boss, don’t flatter yourself angel boy” yeah, that nickname was probably going to stick, she reached forward and patted against his chest gently before stepping past him and turning back to face him “Don’t let me down” she responded and waved before she headed off to her car, putting the shopping on the passenger seat and thinking for a moment how strange this day had already turned out to be.

------------------- A few hours later ---------------------------

She had gotten home and put all of the shopping away before making the rounds of the place and ensuring everything was tidy, it had been a while since she had actually invited over a guest so she checked on the spare room and made sure to put new sheets on the covers. She vacuumed the floor because Cloud had managed to make a new version of himself in the form of hairballs all over the house and she put out a few Christmas bits which she had gotten from the attic before but never gotten around to putting up because it seemed pointless when she was spending Christmas alone. But now she wasn’t so she wanted to put at least a little effort in.

She turned on the TV so that it would make the room sound a little less empty and set out a few snacks she had gotten on the table, which she had been picking at ever since she put them there and needed topping up sooner rather later. She had to wonder what it was going to be like, spending Christmas with someone who had recently become a friend, she supposed she could call him that, given that they had no exchanged personal numbers and usually ended goofing around and having pretty entertaining conversations at work. She enjoyed his company more than she would admit to his face because she knew how smug and smiley he would get if she admitted that. She sighed slightly lifting her glass to her lips and taking a long drink before she heard the sound of the doorbell and the accompanying peel of barks from her fluffball telling her she had a visitor.

"I feel every kid wanted to cure cancer at some point, not that it's something to be made fun of… it's a very noble intention. Some even grew up to be doctors because they wanted to cure people. When I was a kid, I remember wanting to be an astronaut" he chuckled, it's quite ironic, he couldn't fly himself off space, but he could fly. Both ways. "At least I can fly my craft. That's good enough. You became a COO, of a company that's meant to aid people in their daily lives. We're living in the 21st century now, technology is a must." How Julian saw it, they both fulfilled that spot. Obviously he had no idea the female was the same person he met so many nights ago; Scarlett Archer, the vigilante he's been wanting to meet again. But alas, his luck didn't cash in. Despite the gaze she spared him, it didn't stop Julian from advancing, hey, he knows what he's doing. Pegging Nora was risky but it's a risk he was willing to take. 

"I'm not acting like it's the best thing I ever heard... " he scoffed playfully, "I know it is the best thing I ever heard." They can be professional but it didn't meant every moment was serious, it's the reason why he was able to get along with the dhampir so well without any further altercations. Nora would often respond with a narrowed look but it only made the Nephilim grin, nothing seemed to stop him. But she hasn't told him off. Not yet. Surely, that had to mean something, right? "Evermore too cold for you huh" he murmured, that's new, but then again he spent the better part of his working days at Siberia, so he probably got accustomed if anything. When she told him it wasn't as easy to make time as she could when it comes to selecting holiday destinations, Julian nodded knowingly, he could relate, perhaps not at much but he couldn't exactly take a vacation when he's an engineer that's leading the current project. He'd have his own head on a pike. 

"You say it like that but you know you secretly like it" he teased, surely enough, Nora's smile could quite possibly make him lose his attention elsewhere. Upon hearing that he was given free rein to pick the movie for that night, he was already trying to rack his head what's good on Netflix right now that was well-suited for their Christmas mode, "You'll either have to sit through a horrible movie or one you'll like. But don't blame me, I never said I was good at picking movies." The mention of kid gloves had Julian picturing Nora with her fists out at him, which was equally intimidating as it is cute. "Don't worry, I don't doubt that." Trying to suppress a grin around her was almost an impossible task to do, "Well, I would've been able to tell you if it worked if I've tried it on anyone else. No, this one is new. And hasn't been used on anyone. So you're the first, you should tell me how it works." 

But then again, talking about his love life, he had a fiance at some point so he knew stuff, by the very least. It didn't mean he had to expose himself on that part. His past is past, Julian didn't want to bring about the association he once had with another girl. "Yeah I could've gotten them but it wouldn't be half as special, come on, Nora, let a man down easily, why won't you" he had his lips jutted out in a pout as he crossed his arms and huffed out playfully. Angel boy was definitely sticking. When she said not to let her down, he almost generated an automatic response to it, "I won't."

 Getting back to his car didn't take him long, not as long as the car ride back to his place. When he returned, he noticed the snow had already covered the stairs and that he would need to clean it up later on. Not today, or in a few days. Later. Right now, he had an appointment. A very important one. The temperature inside wasn't as chilling but it was still uncomfortable without the heater working. The Nephilim rushed upstairs to his room and folded a few pair of clothes inside his backpack, enough for a few days stay, despite knowing he couldn't possibly stay longer. A precaution never hurts. The dark-haired male quickly put everything he needed including his essentials inside. Before leaving, he took some time to clean and tidy up the place. 

The address was the first thing his eyes glazed over when he opened his phone, Julian was halfway starting his engine and tried to navigate carefully. Driving in this weather wasn't ideal but it had to be done. The trip to her place took him close to 35 minutes from his place, as he parked somewhere nearby. Sometimes, he truly did forget she's a COO. It's hard to believe when she didn't live a lavish lifestyle, despite her house screaming like one. He pressed his finger against the doorbell and waited for her arrival, tucking both hands inside his pockets and rolling his shoulders casually. The architecture was surprisingly simple yet so enticing. 

She had to admit, this was not the way she expected to be spending her evening but then when she pictured what she would actually be doing, really it was a saving grace. He’d even given her the motivation she needed to actually finish making the Christmas cake which she had been working on for the past few hours, swaying herself back in the forth in the kitchen while she made it just like she said he wouldn’t get to see. Truthfully she felt a little lighter than she usually did, probably because instead of looking at tomorrow as just another day of the year she actually got to celebrate a little and that was an exciting thought for someone who was used to spending pretty much every holiday alone, it wasn’t like she could see her family on the holidays, there were no longer any she still spoke to.

She was still worrying over the fact that she might have forgotten to do something before she heard the doorbell and was snapped out of her gaze. Cloud seemed like he was just about walking on air with excitement just as she expected because they didn’t really get many visitors and certainly not ones who used the doorbell. They even had a mailbox out front so it wasn’t like you would see the mailman heading up to the door or anything. She padded across the floor, just narrowly avoiding stepping on the pup who was skittering under her feet as she undid the latch and then opened it, she leaned against the door frame and waved to him for a moment before blinking because she realized he didn’t have a car “How did you get here?” she commented curiously.

They didn’t have but 10 seconds to speak to one another before the white fluffball ran out of patience and headed under her legs to launch himself towards the stranger he had decided he liked “Cloud!” she yelled in an attempt to stop him jumping up but it was too late, he was already hopelessly trying to get Julian’s attention which made her laugh softly, stepping aside so that she could invite him in “Well now the two of you are acquainted come on in” she had a playful smile on her lips as she closed the door behind them and headed inside “You will have to excuse any clones of him you find around here, he’s shedding like crazy and honestly, we will be lucky not to look like him before the end of the night” she had done her best to clean up this evening but she still felt a little self-conscious to be showing her home off to him.

“Would you like a drink? I have everything we bought earlier plus I found 2 bottles of red wine just for you” he laughed softly grabbing her glass from earlier and raising is as though to show she already started on it. She felt a little nervous and she wasn’t even sure why, this was a favor to a friend right? A chance to get to know each other and ensure that he wasn’t going to be alone and cold on Christmas “How was the temperature at your place looking? Any idea when an engineer will actually be available?” not that she was trying to kick him out already but she was curious to know how the process was going because she was sure he wanted it solved.

At first, he expected for this year's Christmas to go dull, for many reasons. He couldn't score a flight ticket those because it was full, and he still had some work to be done though he was more than inclined to push it aside until the new year because he too, deserved some days off like anyone else. As of things weren't bad enough, his heater decided today was a good day to break down, leaving the Nephilim with close to nothing for the means of warming himself up. He already knew he had to go get some extra blankets to cover himself up with the lack of heater that was no longer sold in the stores but even blankets were sold out. Just his luck then. Meeting Nora was unexpected but their brief shopping trip had given him another thing to look forward to; meeting her again. When she invited him over to spend the festivity together, he didn't want to say no, not really. How could he? 

But he also didn't want to impose on her personal space that is her home and only relented after she insisted it wouldn't be a disturbance considering she was alone, with her dog, Cloud, as her only companion aside from Netflix. Julian decided it was best that he parked elsewhere instead of inside the residency simply to show his politeness while waiting for the door to be opened, he tapped his feet against the front mat and blew the cold air a few times until the door was finally opened. What greeted him was the familiar face he's been wanting to see again. "By car? I parked it elsewhere. Don't worry, I didn't walk all the way here. My place is a bit far off from yours and I'm not crazy enough to jog in the cold on Christmas Eve, as crazy as you may think I can come across as" he chided playfully but before he could even think of saying another word, he was attacked by something fluffy. 

He had to admit, the sneaky attack was unexpected but Julian found himself rubbing the back of Cloud's ears endearingly and picked him up after picking himself up from the wobbly state he was in earlier, "So this is the infamous Cloud, I imagine?" He followed her inside while still holding the white fluff in his arms, who seemed to feel content within his embrace too, "Your master is being mean about you" he whispered coolly to Cloud and placed him down on the floor. When he was offered a drink, Julian nodded gently, he's gonna need one to last the night, "Just for me? You didn't have to" he cooed teasingly, knowing it was just to get to her. "The temperature wasn't doing any better than earlier, colder, in fact. I rang my friend and he said they won't be able to come and fix things until the new year because the schedule says so. So yeah, I'm stuck with a cold place for a while." 

She gave him a questioning look when he said that he parked elsewhere, tilting her head slightly “My massive driveway isn’t enough for you?” she jested with a laugh, she did recognize that she didn’t actually tell him there was parking space available, mostly because it just didn’t occur to her. “I mean the jogging would have kept you warm at least?” she commented with a laugh. She felt a little more at ease now he was actually here, she wasn’t sure what she was actually worried about really, the two of them always talked pretty easily whenever they saw each other at work, this wasn’t all that different right? Except there might be alcohol involved, that could definitely complicate the situation. Still, she was going to try and make the best of it and keep an open mind.

Normally Cloud wasn’t the type to completely launch himself at a stranger so she hadn’t been expecting him to rush past and jump up on the Nephilim “Gosh sorry, he’s not usually this crazy, you must have caught him on a….weird day” she eyed the fluffball who got himself tucked up under Julian’s arm and looking pretty proud of himself “Yes, can you see why the name works so well” she chuckled under her breath shaking her head “He normally barks at strangers and yet he’s suddenly an angel with you, I’m suspicious” she responded when he said she was being mean about him, after Julian placed him down he headed into the lounge, no doubts to go and find some food because he was pretty much constantly eating.

“I’m glad, I didn’t want to be the only one drinking” she commented dryly as she returned to her wine glass and took a long sip of it, though she gave him an unimpressed look when he pointed out that she made the effort to go and find it because he said he liked it “Shut up” she commented and averted her gaze a little flustered as she poured a second glass of the red and then crossed the room to offer it out to him. “Ouch” she responded when he explained that the house was just getting colder and that he wouldn’t be able to get anyone to fix it until the new year “The world really does entirely stop this time of year huh?” she commented it thoughtfully as she sipped her own drink “Okay let me show you where your room is so you can set your stuff down” she led the way around the place “Kitchen, help yourself to any food or snacks you want, bathroom is down the hall there, my room is over there” she pointed out each place as they went before she finally stopped at the spare bedroom and opened the door “And this is tu casa, for a couple of days at least” she smiled nudging the door open for him.

"No, no it's not that. You didn't tell me you had space for me to park and I didn't think it was polite to park inside when I'm just a visitor" he grinned sheepishly and rubbed the back of his head awkwardly because he wasn't sure how to explain it to Nora, but thankfully she didn't hold to it for long. "It may have kept me warm but I don't want to sweat in the cold either… not when the mood doesn't allow me to. Yes, I always have to be in the mood when it comes to exercising or else it wouldn't be half as fun" Every time he jogged or worked out, he would always his earphones plugged in to hear music, because who could live without it? Admittedly, he didn't feel as awkward as he felt like the time during their first meeting, he could still recall how fidgety and nervous he was around her for the first hour. Fortunately, he warmed up and got more comfortable afterward, which led to their surprising friendship now that was revolving around both professional and personal walls. 

When he was suddenly jumped by a white fluffy, he didn't expect to be greeted by another, however, Cloud seemed pretty content when he made his presence known to the Nephilim. "Weird day? Does Cloud normally have weird days?" he chuckled and made a few funny faces to him while petting using his left hand, Cloud actually looked quite comfortable huddled up against him. He wasn't heavy either. Upon hearing the revelation of how Cloud normally barks at strangers, he had a wry grin as he lifted him up to the air, narrowing his hazel hues to the dog, "I mean, technically I am an angel, I guess dogs can sense angels around so much easier, no? Don't you think I'm an angel?" he quirked his eyebrows playfully and chuckled, he didn't normally muster up jokes either but when he's comfortable, he responded to do a lot of questionable things he had no idea where the courage came from. 

After he placed him down, he watched as the dog scurried off elsewhere before trailing after the dhampir, "Well, drinking alone can be sad when you have company. I wouldn't put you through that session, don't worry" he reassured lightly and let out a scoff when she retorted immediately, "If I had a dime for every time you tell me to shut up. It's becoming your signature phrase, have you noticed?" He took the glass and thanked her before taking a long sip himself, "Yeah, I guess I can't be surprised. It's not as if engineers could just come and fix things up for you just because you demand for it. It's not that easy. They have procedures to follow and all… I'll just have to wait until New Year." No big deal, right? 

Julian followed her shortly after placing his glass on the counter as she proceeded on showing him where is where, until they reached the spare room that was supposed it be his, for a few days. He stepped inside and let his eyes wander around, "It's simplistic, how so predictable of you. In a good way. Thanks for inviting me to stay, I didn't think I'd be able to sleep properly without proper heating but if the worst comes to it, I was just going to bear with it." It meant a lot to him. He set his bag down and went back out, "So what's your plan for the evening?" Obviously, he saw the things they bought earlier sprawled out in the kitchen earlier. His eyesight can be such a blessing.

She chuckled softly under her breath as he got a little defensive over the parking space “Don’t worry angel boy I’m just toying with you, though you’re welcome to move your car onto the drive when you next go to it” she added, she had three parking spaces and only one of them was actually taken by her car, usually the maid had another but she was away right now. “Yeah sweating isn’t exactly fun but then I wouldn’t call most exercise fun either” she wrinkled her nose slightly “I do like training though, there’s something a little thrilling about going up against opponents and knocking them on their ass” she grinned slightly, there really weren’t many people who could beat her when it came to a 1v1 match because she made the effort to master even weapons which didn’t choose her.

She shook her head “I mean he does sometimes but it’s usually because he wants treats and will literally try and get them from anyone” this was different though, this actually seemed like he had pretty much immediately taken to Julian and he looked like a content baby tucked up under his arm. “Maybe that’s it” she commented under her breath as she glanced over at the two of them and then shook her head slightly in disbelief. She rolled her eyes when he asked her if she thought he was an angel though “You are technically a half-angel yes” she responded with shook her head slightly because she knew he was implying it in the innocent really good person kind “Turns out even angels can be snide though, or maybe that’s the human part of you” she chuckled softly as they headed inside the house.

“Drinking alone is sad full stop, what’s the point in getting buzzed if you are just going to curl up on your own” she laughed softly and shrugged, she sometimes had a drink after work but most of the time it was only one which was nowhere near enough to get drunk. In response to him saying shut up was becoming her signature catchphrase she laughed, a slight smirk crossing her lips before she spoke again “Shut up” she gave a playful roll of her eyes. “Well I personally think it’s awful that anyone could be left in the cold on Christmas but then I guess that would mean making someone have to be away from their family to fix everyone’s problems which doesn’t help either” so really they couldn’t win. “Martha isn’t back for another week or so which means it’ll just be us for a while but feel free to invade until things are sorted back home” she offered it with a nod of her head.

She leaned against the doorframe as she let him have a moment to familiarize himself with the room “Predictable of me” she responded with a soft smile and a tilt of her head “I’m not sure whether you using simple and predictable to describe my tastes is offensive” she laughed shaking her head slightly “But you’re welcome, hopefully it’ll be comfortable enough for you, though I imagine the heating alone makes up for the home alternative” she hated being cold, she would always wear multiple layers even in the house “I was thinking put a few snacks together, have a few drinks and maybe watch some movies?” she shrugged slightly, she figured chatting on the couch seemed like a decent way to break the ice so things would be awkward. “Normally I’d get an early night but that’s not very host like” she laughed rubbing at the back of her neck, she was new to this.

Angel boy was slowly making its way up to his number of nicknames, he didn't have many, most of them were from Cora or his elder sister, bit Angel Boy was definitely close to taking that number one spot already. "I will probably do that later, thanks for telling me" he chuckled, admittedly, he once again forgot she was rather well off so of course she would have a big house like that. "Mhmm, sweating in the cold is a no no. It'll probably make you sick or something" Julian always liked to lock himself where he could focus on training. "I like doing cardio when I can, but then again I also don't expect everyone to suddenly fall in line for exercising." He's seen people who's irked by exercising but trains like hell. He had a grin when he heard her talking about training, "You would love to put them in their place, huh?" Somehow, he knew Nora would have no problem doing that if she wants to. 

When he first set his foot inside, the first thing that he saw was Cloud, after he scurried off, he took in every corner of the space that he walked on. It looked simple, the place is a bit spacious for someone to love alone and he wondered if the designs were changed by Nora herself. If you're living alone, you may as well make it look your worth, right? "Well… I don't have any treats, maybe he just really sees my aura and like it." The way she shook her head in disbelief still had him laughing because Cloud and him looked like a pair. "I guess he likes me better" he teased, "Yes, half angel, but… nevermind, you'll never admit I'm an actual angel anyway" he shook his head and chuckled, because they both know how hard it'll be to get her to say something like that. 

Julian pressed a hand over his chest and gasped in feigned offense, "Don't let angels hear that, they'll be very upset. They're supposed to be lovable creatures, come on. Maybe they're snide to people they know will prefer it" he mocked because there wasn't a time for Nora when he couldn't be snark. The dhampir is just sassy on her own. Though he was beginning to grow fonder of it. "I mean, now that you've said it like that, drinking alone would be upsetting yes… but what if you just needed a drink?" He couldn't see himself getting all buzzed at a random bar without falling face first against the counter. And he wasn't the type to actually do anything reckless as bringing someone home either. He was very careful of when he actually gets drunk. "I really need to start a jar where I put a dollar in every time you say shut up, maybe I can score myself a vacation with that alone" Knowing Nora? He most probably would end up getting that. And just like that, she said it again.

 "I'll be sure not to invade your place too much, or else you'll never want to get rid of me." If Nora wants to remain sassy, he'll just join in. "It's not offensive, I find minimalist style interesting. Besides, your style can tell a lot about a person. This house screams you. A bit spacious but you probably changed the interior which made it look so much more simplistic, it feels homey" He saw how the furniture were arranged and whatnot. It was an ideal place. At least, for him. "Mhmm you're right, the heating alone makes it comfortable, I feel like I'm staying at a big 5-star hotel." When she told him her plans, he snickered at the mention where she would normally take an early night, "I mean, I wouldn't blame you for doing that but I kinda want to spend my Christmas Eve with someone too... " he mumbled softly, "I haven't forgotten that baking part though, have you started on it?" 

“Sweating, in general, isn’t fun” she responded and pulled a face, it was always uncomfortable when working out and definitely didn’t look good on most people “And sickness isn’t either, I am so glad I have a better immune system than most because I’m not sure I could handle needing to be off work all the time” she wrinkled her nose, she hated it when people told her she needed to lay down and rest, it quite literally wasn’t something in her nature and she got really bored of it really fast. “You say it like I haven’t done it many times over” she responded when he said she enjoyed putting people in their place “I actually heard there’s a bet going on in the dojo for the first person to be able to floor me” she snickered and shrugged “They can keep trying, though I really think I should weigh in and win myself some of this money” she gave a somewhat sarcastic roll of her eyes.

“Maybe that’s it, he’s always been a good judge of character” she remembered a few times when people had come over here and made her a little uncomfortable he had positioned himself between her and said person until they left. But with Julian he seemed to be immediately smitten, she wasn’t sure whether to be annoyed or impressed by it. “You’re catching on pretty quickly” she responded when he said she would never admit he was an angel and she gave him an amused look “but I do call you angel boy so, that that as you wish” she added to the end as she lifted her glass to her lips and took a long sip, she really could do this all night to be honest, she actually liked being around people who could take her jests with a grain of salt and still keep a smile on their lips.

“Are you implying that I like being sassed?” she raised a questioning brow in his direction but shook her head slightly with a smile, maybe she did, her default character was to be quite dry and a little pessimistic with her humor but that was just who she was, she wasn’t going to change it any time soon. “Well having one drink after work is different from getting day drunk all alone” she responded and then laughed, there was a difference between drinking because you liked the taste of whatever you were drinking and drinking with the intention to get drunk after all. “A vacation on my habits?” she laughed softly, okay she did say it a lot but he said things that got under her skin a lot and her default reaction when she was flustered or didn’t know what to say was that, if he thought about it too much it was probably flattering that he could catch her off guard like that “I mean you’d have to spend a lot of time around me though and that might drive you insane” she teased him with a wry grin.

She scoffed when he said she would never want to get rid of him “You’re confident” she commented with a blunt time and shrugged slightly “I just don’t like things feeling overdone or flashy, that’s not my thing” she wasn’t the type who wanted to flaunt her wealth, there had been a time in her life where she had nothing and she supposed the simplistic life came from that and wanting to be as far from the life her parents gave her as possible. “I wanted a smaller place but after I came in here I fell in love with the panel window along the back, being able to see the panoramic views of the sunset or the stars was too special to pass up” she pointed back to the door where her bedroom was “That’s why I chose that spot for my room” she padded over towards it and opened the door, showing how the bedroom was on the high part of the hill meaning she could see out over the city through the big window “Feels less lonely when you have a view like that to see” though it was still just her most of the time, and Cloud, who had already spotted the open door and bolted inside to jump on the bed “See, I told you it was our usual bedtime” she grinned slightly coaxing him out and closing the door behind him.

“I have started, well I mean I got all the ingredients out and started soaking the fruits which go on top but you are welcome to come and help” she smiled somewhat shyly, it didn’t really feel right to ask the guest to help with the cooking but it kinda seemed like he wanted to. “You can take your shoes off, by the way, make yourself comfortable” she was padding around in her socks after all. She headed into the kitchen, flipping on the light which lit up the surfaces and started arranging the bowls of ingredients she prepared earlier.

"Newsflash, Nora, we sweat every single day, I wonder how you fare with that" Julian was clearly loving the times he could tease the dhampir and he's never stopped on his account nor hers, even when she would often blow him off. That's just them. Their weird dynamic together that just somehow, worked. "Pretty sure you won't even need to use your health insurance unless you found yourself falling from a building or something" He had high imagination, leave him be. "Having an off day is fun when you're not sick though. Sometimes I wish I could take those but then I'd find myself sprinting towards my babies and get back to work when I'm supposed to be resting at home." That happens quite frequently, to a point where Julian knew it wasn't going anywhere. "I never said that, I just decided to… oil that sass even more. You like saying it, admit it." He raised his eyebrows in surprise when she said there's a bet going around on flooring her, "Well, that's interesting. I wonder who could."

 It was clear that Nora was a formidable opponent, she had the posture for sure, and he wasn't sure if he wanted to get in the same room as hers when it comes to fighting. Doesn't hurt to try though. "Can anyone try?" Yep, there it is. He had this stupid grin plastered on his face when Nora confirmed Cloud had a good judge of character which meant he likes him for a reason, "Careful now, I may grow to like it and you'll never get rid of me." Julian quickly drew both his hands up in defense when she came back at him with the interrogation look, "Hey, I'm just describing what I see. Don't come at me." He wasn't a drinker, even when he's stressed of visibly frustrated with something, the Nephilim wasn't a drinker of the slightest. It's more likely to find him beating a dummy to a pulp if anything. "I've only drank alone once. I woke up with a massive hangover the next day, so bad I vowed to never do it ever again." One bitter memory was all he needed to swore off things. 

"Do you like to drink?" Honestly, the idea of spending more time together didn't sound weird at all. Appealing, more like it. "What if I want to spend my time around you?" he retorted dryly, taking a long sip with his eyes still trained on her. "It's good to be confident. Girls love it, or so they say… I don't know, Internet can be so misleading sometimes." Nora never struck him to be a flashy and fancy type, she carried herself with dignity and pride, which oozed her charms even better with every struck. He didn't expect for her to show him her room, it seemed highly personal but seeing how comfortable she was with the idea of it made him smile gently, maybe he was proud to see that trust somewhere deep within. "It's beautiful."

 The sight of Cloud jumping on the bed gave him a mini heart attack because he didn't see that coming, "It's still early, gosh you two." Hearing that she still hasn't gone too far into the recipe to bake, Julian was quick to take his shoes off and headed over to the kitchen, "What do you need me to do?" From his tone and judging from how Nora knows him, Julian isn't taking no for an answer. He was standing right next to her with minimal proximity while eyeing her counter. 

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