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It was ridiculous to feel nervous. She knew that, it wasn't like she had just met this guy and it wasn't like they hadn't slept in the same bed when she let him come stay with her over Christmas. It had been a couple weeks since then, Julian had insisted that they go out on a real date but they'd been texting a lot since then and seen one another a few times at work. One time had resulted in a pretty heated makeout session in the break room which told her that everything she was feeling wasn't just going to disappear. She liked him, dammit she really liked him.
She had picked out her outfit the night before to avoid her getting in a last minute panic. Nora didn't really pay much mind to what others thought about her fashion but perhaps for one night she wanted to impress him a little. The feminist in her was shaking her head in disapproval but she couldn't bring herself to care in that moment. She was wearing her favorite pair of jeans, a pretty blouse paired with a loose-fitting black cardigan which would keep her warm enough as they wandered around the aquarium together.
A blush rested upon her cheeks as she thought about the idea of going on a date with him, in public no less. She wondered if he would hold her hand while talking about something dorky, whether that stupid grin would plant itself on her lips and refuse to leave like it usually did when she was with him. As if he could sense her nervousness, Cloud jumped up for her attention which made her laugh and tell him to settle in her bed "I'll be fine, it's only a date, what's the worst that could happen right?" she attempted to laugh it off but really she was wondering how tonight would go.
She grabbed her bag and keys and headed towards the door, closing it and locking up behind her before heading down the steps of her home and down the driveway. She decided to get a cab rather than drive because she wasn't really sure what the plan was. She knew where they were meeting but it seemed open ended on whether they would stay together after or where they might go. She wanted the freedom to have a few drinks if she wanted. She hopped into the cab she called and before long she was across the city to the busier tourist part at the center.
She got out of the car, looking around as she pulled her cardigan tighter because the air was colder than she was expecting it to be. She made her way to their meeting spot outside of the building and tugged on her sleeves a little as she waited.
Promises are promises, at the end of the day. Though he’s not sure whether he could properly keep them, he does intend to see them through. She deserves at least that much too. Sometimes Julian would stare into her eyes and see the emotions clouding behind another layer, one he couldn’t even dare to touch. Until she feels more comfortable with him, he assured himself. He shouldn’t be poking his nose where he’s not needed. “Well what do you know, my mother always told me to have a big vocabulary” he teased, the term always feels relatively foreign to him at times. His eyes softened when he heard her say that she never had anyone who truly loved her, perhaps that’s what she thinks but isn’t that what matters most? What you yourself think? Or else she wouldn’t downplay everything she’s doing.
“I’m here now, I can’t give you the world, unfortunately. But I can help give you what you need if it’s within my ability.” Anything. Julian chuckled and rubbed the back of his neck awkwardly while the blush crept up, god it was so hard to keep his emotions in check regularly because of his Nephilim senses, but even more so in front of Nora, of all people. Can’t keep your blush down, Julian. “If everyone is not immune to some puppy eyes then the world wouldn’t be such a bad place, Len.” The taller male narrowed his eyes playfully and hummed as he tried to decipher what she was saying, “Mystery, huh? So my lady likes her mystery… How… interesting.” He even purposely made his voice deeper just to add to the act.
“I took ballroom lessons when I was like… 12, and it went on until I was what? 16? Yeah, my sister teased me endlessly when I would come to those lessons late because I purposely overslept” Can anyone really blame him? He usually had a packed schedule outside of schooling hours anyway, and attending ballroom lessons was not really in the mix for his priorities. Not for a 12-year-old Julian Lockhart. “God, when I say it out loud, it does sound embarrassing.” He was reminded of that night, though. What a nice night it was. When she got closer and inches herself up, the Nephilim couldn’t hold in his snicker as he spared her an endearing gaze, brushing a few strands of her hair behind her ear and wrapped his arms around her to pull her closer so he could press his lips against hers softly. “You should wear heels more often” he teased, humming softly against the familiar pair of lips that he wasn’t sure he could let go ever again. “Well neither do I, how can we really get tired of that?”
He had wondered if he could pick a better spot for their date but this fits them so well. The aquatic life just brings out the geek inside them. He had to admit though, shrimps were not what he thought he’d be doing, so he looked at them warily before sighing to himself and heading over there to her side. “How lucky for them, free food.” He perched his head against her shoulder and tilted his head slightly to the side, “Dolphin show is next in less than 5 minutes. I know you want to get front row” he whispered and brushed his lips gently against her neck before reverting back to his spot, still holding that mischievous glint in his purple hued orbs. “I heard they’ll do a special show today.”
She couldn’t help but grin when he made the joke about his mother and having a big vocabulary “I guess I should thank her for that” she teased softly, she never thought she would feel quite this comfortable with someone but honestly, being around him she didn’t feel that usual temptation to block up her walls and run away, he put her at ease in a strange way. “I have to wonder sometimes how I got...lucky enough to be the one you set your eyes on” there were plenty of girls out there, after all, many of them were much more approachable than her and would have been better for him if he was looking for someone who was girlfriend material, still, every time he seemed to remind her it was her he wanted.
She shrugged slightly when he pointed out she likes mystery “Doesn’t everyone like a bit of mystery?” keep people guessing and there was always more to find out, people weren’t single-layered and that was the way things should be, there were sides of yourself you showed around different people or in different situations. “Ballroom huh? What did you like so much about it?” she was made to learn to dance from a young age because her parents always dragged her to fancy company parties where she was expected to entertain the other kids. It was always pretty stuffy for her tastes but she always did enjoy the actual dancing part “They were just jealous because you captured all the girl’s hearts” she teased as she reached up to tuck a strand of his wild hair back for him.
Kissing him always made her chest explode with nervousness, it wasn’t just another person she would never see again, it was someone who made her feel special, important. She couldn’t stop this irrational feeling like she wanted to keep pulling him in and never letting go “It’s the only way I stand a chance against your freakishly tall frame” she teased as she pressed another chaste kiss against his lips just because he was there and she could. “I don’t want to get tired of it” she commented, her eyes meeting his for a moment “Feeling like I’m on top of the world” and like they were in their own little world at the same time.
She was having fun, perhaps some people would have thought it was a weird place to take someone on a date but for her it was touching, she enjoyed the whole experience and for once she was with someone who didn’t bring down the overall experience for her. “Well then we’d better get going” she in a hushed voice, laughing as his lips brushed against her neck, she momentarily got distracted but then she widened her eyes because he wasn’t wrong, she definitely wanted to be able to see the dolphins well so she tugged his arm as though to say they needed to hurry “Special?” she commented with a curious gaze “Someone did his research” she commented as they headed into the outdoor stadium where people were beginning to settle themselves ready for the show.
He grinned unapologetically and stroked her hair gently, pulling her close by the side in his attempts to comfort her, "Luck? Did you count your lucky stripes every night like a good girl?" He jested, she deserves much more but he was glad that he could at least give her this. Perhaps it wasn't much from another's perspective but to him, he thought it was nice that they could move slowly at a pace where she's comfortable with. He could wait, for however long she wants him to wait. "You're kind of girlfriend material though, I have to admit that I wanted someone who would dance and goofing off with me on Christmas night." It was a moment he wasn't going to forget easily. "I like a little mystery so you're spot on with that." But with Nora, there seemed to be so much more than just this simple multi-faceted look she was going for. It was as if there was something that he didn't know yet that might mean so much more than what an average person would.
"Ballroom dance can be romantic… They had pairings then. But my sister likes to pull off a few pranks that will eventually embarrass the hell out of me." But it was all good, to go back and remember all those things, especially when he's been away from home for quite some time. "Do you think I'm capable or stealing all of the hearts? You sound confident" he teased and stared down at her with the softest gaze he could muster, she was being more openly with her affection and every ounce of his bone is screaming in joy. God knows how long he's been waiting for this and now it finally happens. Julian will bask in this and remember all the good that came out from his patience. The nephilim had that stupid grin after the chaste kiss he received from the dhampir, nudging her playfully as they walked forward to tease her about her height.
"Do I even want to know how tall those are? How many inches are they? What's the tallest pair of heels you've got?" He did favor her smaller frame though, it makes her easy to hug and Julian could be a hugger when he wants to be. "You are on top of the world, Len, at least my world, and you should be on top of your world too." He will never stop encouraging her with every positivity he could lend, he knows that people are not around often to tell her those things but he'll do it gladly, with a smile. "If you like doing something then there's really no reason to be tired of it, right?" Isn't that why the word passion was invented in the first place?
Upon witnessing her excitement as soon as the words left his lips regarding special dolphin show, Julian shook his head and held her hands in his as they make their way to where the audience was slowly filling the seats. He managed to get them seats at the front row because there wasn't many of them there yet, but within the next 5 minutes, the place was packed. "One of them is called Yankees and I don't even want to ask why." Soon the instructor started the show by giving off the introductions, the 4 dolphins came swimming by to perform a few neat tricks. He noticed one was carelessly missing the mark and pointed it out to her, "Now that one looks like she's special."
She rolled her eyes playfully when he pointed out her belief in luck, she didn’t think it ran the world but she could certainly believe that some people were simply luckier than others and that the world wouldn’t come to you just because you worked hard “Luck has its part to play, though it isn’t any use hoping for it to come your way” she teased playfully. The way he said she was girlfriend material but prefixed it with kinda made her laugh “I don’t think anyone sane has ever looked at me and thought I’m girlfriend material” she teased and nudged him “But goofing off, that much I can handle” he was patient with her and that was more than enough.
She scrunched her nose and chuckled thinking about the pranks someone could get away with while dancing ballroom “Bet she messed up your counts a lot” she teased playfully but smiled because she found it pretty cute how his reasoning for liking ballroom was because it was romantic, he was so open with the softer side of him and sometimes it surprised her. “I think you’re very capable, if you put your mind to it” she teased, looking back at those doe eyes that were fixed on her, she swore her heart wanted to leap in her chest from nervousness. “But I might ask you to keep that superpower secret...since I don’t want to be fighting other girls off” she commented and grinned softly.
She pouted her lips when he asked her about the height of her heels and she sighed dramatically “There might be seven-inch ones in my closet” she admitted and shook her head, those ones were killer on the ankles though and she had probably only wore them once “But 4 inches is my go-to” which still made her smaller than him but it did help a little at least. She blushed a little when he said she was on top of his world and bit her lip softly “You sure have a way of making a girl feel...giddy” she murmured softly, sometimes the things he came out with were cheesy but overall they were romantic, the kind of thing that makes her heart flutter. “True” she commented in a soft voice in agreement with him “Though people might start to raise eyebrows if I indulge...too much” she commented and grinned slightly.
Before long they were heading into the stadium and quickly took their seats as the place started to fill up with people, her eyes were on the pool of water in front of them where you could see the dolphins swimming around, she grinned slightly when a few of them did some jumps and the likes. But Julian was right, one of them wasn’t executing the moves quite the same way as the others “She’s trying her best” she argued back as she nudged him slightly “I wonder if she has an injury” she commented softly remembering that she read the dolphins here were brought in because they had been involved in accidents and needed rehabilitation.
He scrunched up his nose and pulled a face before nudging her playfully, “Eh, I like being hopeful, but that’s me, I’m a hopeless romantic and you know that.” To him, it paid off, he was being hopeful that perhaps, one day, Nora would notice him and she did. It was a harmless hope, of course. But it did something to Julian. “Then said sane people must’ve been blind because they didn’t give a wonderful girl a chance to show what she’s got. I’m not one of those people” he grinned and looked deeply into her bright orbs, “I give my girl a chance because I want to see what she has to show, because I know… she wants to show it.” Deep down, the nephilim knew Nora must’ve wanted to do a few things that she didn’t get the chance to. “You’re going to have to handle it, Len, I’m possibly the goofiest guy you’ll ever meet, one that’s not afraid that you’ll most likely cut his lifespan short.” He could dabble, he has been dabbling with the dhampir and so far? He loves it.
“Yeah, she did, but I made sure she paid for it” he winked playfully, he was a quiet child but it didn’t mean he didn’t have his rebellious streaks, he just knew how to rein it when adults are watching and then make use of the time setting. You have to be smart, after all. Or else, it would’ve been a wasteful effort when it ends up being futile. “You think so?” His voice was soft, the more days that passed by, the more he found himself wanting to open that heart of hers and show her that there is so much more to it. To this girl. So to say Julian was happy to see her openly having fun and laughing like this, would be an understatement. When she said she didn’t want to have to fight other girls off, the nephilim smirked and tilted her chin slightly, “Why? You don’t think you could handle the competition? Is that how it is for Eleanora Nordstroem, hm?” And god, was it fun teasing her.
“7 inches? Wow, I wonder if you’ve ever pulled those out when you’re with me” he teased and pulled her closer while they walked. He loves his little girlfriend, especially when he knows just how much her temper has trouble fitting in her small body. “I like the idea of making my girl feeling giddy, it’s not available to everyone” he whispered the last part and brushed a stray strand of her hair that was blocking her vision. He snorted and shook his head upon hearing that, “Have you ever really cared about what others think of you? I don’t think so, there’s no reason to hold back. I know I’ll be happier to see my girl doing what she wants. Unless it’s something bad, then that uh… maybe you should cut back on that.” Not that she would do such things, Julian had to admit, he does think Nora to still be mysterious, like there’s something else to her, or more specifically, more to her. But he didn’t want to pry.
He still had his arms resting around her waist as they took their seats to watch the dolphins, and there were a few times when he’d glance to his side to see her reaction. “I didn’t say she’s different, as, in a bad way, I think she’s special” and she was right, the dolphin did have an injury, he saw it on the edge of her tail, “Poor thing, she must’ve tried so hard to fit in with the rest but it’s hard when you have something hindering your progress.” It wasn’t as if she could control it. But eventually, the dolphin was able to perform a better trick than the others, despite being late by a few seconds. The claps were heard and he thought the audience also noticed the dolphin’s efforts.
She laughed when he said he was a hopeless romantic and nodded “As long as the hoping doesn’t become delusion I suppose” she preferred not to hope too much that things would go her way because the disappointment felt overwhelming when that happened and all she could do is curse that things didn’t turn out the way she hoped. She rolled her eyes in amusement when he said those sane people must have been blind “She does have a lot to show...but I guess other girls are more….forthcoming” there had been a few times she had liked someone only to discover they had already moved on to someone else. She just shrugged it off because she knew it was her own fault for being so distant “You really are such a patient person” she murmured softly. She laughed at his next words “Don’t say it like that, I would never hurt you” she promised boldly.
He had a really endearing relationship with his sister, she had to admit, she wondered what it would have been like for her if she had grown up with a sibling, though she was honestly glad she didn’t because no one else should have to go through the turmoil that came from what happened with her parents “I’ll bet you did, I can imagine that one of you is still paying for something or other” she chuckled, some mistake they made when they were younger that the other kept bringing up. She bit her lip then nodded “I know so, not just anyone can win me over...you know” it took someone special and he fit that bill to a tee, mostly because his loyalty and belief in someone was beyond anything she ever experienced before.
She grumbled a little when he teased her “Oh I could fight all of those girls off tooth and nail if I had to but...I don’t want to have to” she commented in a soft voice “I selfishly want to be the only girl you see” she confessed as she looked up into his eyes, they always had this world of emotion in them that she felt like she could get lost in. She shuffled a little and laughed “You’d know if I had, I’m well-practiced in heels but even I’m like Bambi on ice in those” she would stick with her shorter ones most of the time. She blushed slightly when he said she should do what she wants, mostly because he kept calling her his girl and it was making her heart flutter “There are some people whose opinions matter” she murmured softly, implying she cared what he thought of her.
She was leaning against his side but her eyes were fixed intently on the poor as the dolphins swam around, the trainer explaining how they rescued and rehabilitated these dolphins who were unable to be released back into the wild. It was honestly admirable “It’s beautiful seeing how she can overcome it and be so charming” you could see she had a cheeky personality from the way she acted, it was honestly fascinating for her. “She’s definitely my favorite of the group” she whispered softly and smiled, joining the applause for the trick. A few more segments went by, she was clapping and cheering along with everyone else. By the time the show was finished, there was a bright smile on her face as she turned to him “Do you think they’ll let us get closer and say hi?” she pursed her lips slightly to hide her excitement.
Sometimes, it made Julian want to reassure her every second of the day to just enjoy what they have and not worry about the outcome. But he's the same too, isn't he? "Forthcoming you say? Hmm perhaps that's what it is." He tilted her chin playfully and chuckled "But she has so much to offer, she just didn't realize that until someone had to force her to sit down and look at it." That's exactly what the nephilim has been doing for the past month actually. It was quite fun because he gets to witness the dhampir getting all flustered. "I am a patient person" he nodded in agreement, Julian would like to say that he could be quite under the covers and patient when it comes to things, he's not the type to blow things out of proportion or overreact.
He only spared her a sheepish grin when she said she would never hurt him, he'd like to believe that too. His childhood stories with his sister reminded him of how much of a mischievous boy he used to be, which he eventually grew out of as soon as he learned there were a lot of responsibilities he had to carry. It was a bummer that he had to push aside those childish whims faster than most of his peers but it is what it is. "You say that now" he scoffed and nudged her playfully "What happens if another guy comes by to swoop you? Someone more attractive maybe?" Was he confident that he could keep her that long? Maybe. Maybe not. "Or girls. They're not excluded from the bunch for sure." He swore his heart went out of service the moment he caught a glimpse of how she was looking up at him, it reminds him a lot like a puppy trying to tell him not to leave her, so much Julian brought one hand up to stroke her hair endearingly.
"Then you can selfishly be the only girl to do that. I've always been a one girl kind of man anyway. No reason to eye another when I've got you right in front of me." He's loyal, he's positive about that. Considering how much he loved his former fiancee and didn't even betray her trust, he was confident he could deliver the same performance to Nora. His eyes fell to her shoes the moment the topic of heels came up, this time she wasn't wearing those uncomfortable high heels, at least not that he could see. "I don't know whether I should be fascinated or scared that you could rock 4 inch heels… it's gotta hurt… both on the owner and whoever gets the bitter end of your stick." He did not want to find out. Once again, he chuckled and patted her head softly, he realized it was a habit for a while now. "So I matter to you, and you matter to me. End of discussion."
He rubbed her arm instinctively while watching the show as she leaned against him, paying attention to what the instructor was telling them about the dolphins in the performance. "Mhmmm very charming, kind of reminds me of someone though, don't you? Charming, able to get through everything possible and stand on their own. Admirable. Beautiful." The entire time he had his eyes glued on her while uttering those words. When it was over, he dragged her with him to get closer to the instructor and asked if it was possible to take a picture of Nora and the dolphins, the instructor was kind enough to allow that so he beckoned for her to stand near the edge as he fished his phone out "Careful to remember your boyfriend is still here, I'm not letting a dolphin take my place, Len" he warned playfully.
She bit softly on her lip when he spoke about being forthcoming, she wasn’t the type to chase someone and honestly she found it too hard to believe that someone would actually like her to take them seriously when they tried to ask her out “You’re too stubborn for your own good” she teased him in return, he was right that it was his perseverance that had made her begin to drop her walls a little, made her believe for just a second, maybe she could deserve him, deserve this. “It’s definitely one of your charms...even if I have no idea how you could be so” if he was smarter he would have already moved onto the next girl but she wasn’t going to question it any longer, he had the right to choose who he wanted.
“I just hope you...find what you’re looking for...with me” she murmured softly, she could try to be the person he saw her as, she could try to be better for him because she wanted him to keep looking at her the way he did today, that soft, caring look she’d never experienced with anyone else before. “Some other guy isn’t going to...make me feel the way you do” she confessed in a soft voice and looked down for a moment, she’d never had someone adore her before the way he seemed to, it made her feel all fluttery just looking at him. “Besides have you seen yourself...tall...dark...handsome...I’m not sure more attractive even exists” she teased as she patted gently against his cheeks.
She shifted on the spot slightly as she watched him when he told her it was okay to be selfish and want to be only his “Your parents must have been very diligent when they raised you, I’ve never met someone so loyal” perhaps even to a fault at times, she wondered what he would allow her to get away with because he cared for her. She made a note in her mind that she should never betray that level of trust he placed in her, she wanted to be worth him. She rocked on her heels and laughed when he commented on her ability to wear heels so high “Sometimes a small girl just needs to look tall for a night” she commented and giggled softly “And you’re right, they do make excellent weapons” she teased playfully.
She pouted her lips when he patted her head and smiled softly, she was enjoying their time at the aquarium, it reminded her that she needed to make effort to take days out like this more often, because she really enjoyed just forgetting about work and getting lost in the scenery around her. She had more reason to now she had someone to go with right? She rolled her eyes at his cheesy likening to the dolphin and nudged him slightly in jest “I could only hope to be a strong as she is” she spoke softly, it was hard to impress her and yet this little dolphin had done as much. After they headed down to the pool and she smiled sheepishly when they said she could take a photo with the dolphins, she moved in front and smiled softly for the camera “You can’t get jealous of a dolphin” she insisted and laughed softly creating a natural photo before she turned to the instructor “Could you take a picture of...both of us?” she questioned as she looked up at Julian and smiled.