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 NSFW/Explicit  Male x Male Taboo [Moonlight Phoenix x Riddle]

Discussion in 'Roleplay Execution' started by Riddle, Aug 5, 2019.

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  1. Threadmarks: Day 1 - Friday
    Riddle

    Riddle Resident Ace Administrator

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    [​IMG] The pamphlet in his hand had clearly been handled incessantly in the few short weeks he'd had it, the edges worn and the creases white from all the times he had folded and refolded them. Luca had nearly thrown away the envelope when it arrived at the house addressed to him in his father's familiar tidy print, his first thought being that it was probably another college brochure. It wasn't that the man was pushing him to attend college, but rather that he was urging Luca to consider colleges closer to Tampa and Miami where - as Adrian put it - they could get a chance to know one another better.

    "Man, this is awesome. I can't believe your dad sent tickets for both of us," his friend Grant remarked from beside him as they stood in the short line at the Tarpoon Lagoon Dive Center.

    Luca lifted one shoulder in a nonchalant shrug, not wanting to ruin Grant's fun by pointing out this was nothing more than a bribe. It was like all the birthday cards, Christmas gifts, and other random shit his dad sent in a decade-long bid to win his affection. No amount of money in the world could make up for someone throwing away their family by sharing a secret that didn't need to be shared. What had Adrian thought to gain by revealing to his wife and kids that he was bisexual? All he had done was hurt them, leaving Luca's mother to pick up the pieces and try to rebuild a life for them in what was probably the smallest "town" imaginable in northern Florida. It had been far from the warm beaches and salty air that Luca had grown to love as a child.

    That same love was the reason Luca had opened the envelope, knowing that the colleges his dad kept recommending were all located within an hour or two of the ocean. Had Adrian remembered all these years later that his son dearly loved being on the water? Considering he had taken the liberty of arranging a 3-day scuba course for Luca and one of his friends, it seemed the old man's memory was as keen as ever. Even the hotel he had booked for the two young men was right on the water, their hotel room featuring a sliding glass door out to a patio that led directed to the beach. Luca had taken advantage of that first thing when they settled in his yesterday afternoon, waking up this morning with his bronze skin sporting a tinge of pink across his cheeks and shoulders that spoke of time spent lounging in the sun.

    Hefting his backpack - filled with the recommended swimsuit, towel, change of clothes, lunch, and some money - Luca stepped up to the counter when it was their turn, passing the girl their passes and offering a smile. "Wonderful, gentleman," she said brightly as she tapped away at a keyboard. "Alright, I have a note in here from a Adrian Milas to get you both set up with scuba gear... and it looks like you'll be with John's group," she read aloud, grabbing a marker to begin writing on two plastic bracelets that they then held their arms out for. "Okay, all set. Just step that way to get fitted for gear and then you can meet up for the review in the room at the end of that hallway"

    "Thanks," Luca nodded, accepting the pamphlet with their punch-marked passes back to tuck into the back pocket of the khaki shorts he wore.

    Grant patted him on the back and gave a knowing look as he gestured around the shop. "Hey, you gotta admit your dad really tried hard to put this all together. Even having them add a note to set us up with gear?"

    Luca rolled his eyes, even if Grant's enthusiasm did coax a small smile from him. "I'm sure it's standard. Look, says right on that sign to have a mask, snorkel, fins, googles, wetsuit, and signal tubes," he pointed towards the wall."

    They were set up with everything though - regulators, scuba tanks, weight systems, buoyancy control devices. The bags they each ended up carrying along with their backpacks were heavy, a small thrill going through Luca as he thought of what this meant. Once he was was certified, he would be able to go on more dives and really explore the ocean that had always fascinated him. It went a small ways towards softening his attitude towards his father - not because of the expense, but because there had clearly been some thought behind the gesture. That thought lurked in the back of his mind as they wandered down the hallway to a small room that resembled a classroom, finding seats at a table behind the others who had already arrived.

    "Just the review and a few tests, then lunch before we hop in the water?" Grant whispered as he opened one of the workbooks on the table.

    "I think so. It said today was just practicing in the pool, but tomorrow we'll go out on the water," Luca murmured as he started flipping through his own book, using one foot to move his gear under the table where it would be out of the way of the aisle.

    By the time lunch rolled around, one guy had already failed to pass the quizzes, but the rest of them broke off into groups with the mysterious John's group being sent to the outdoor pool and instructed to change into swimsuits. Luca stepped into one of the blue and white striped outdoor tents to change, stuffing his old clothing in a bag inside his backpack, then grabbing his gear to haul it over to a bench beside the pool where Grant and an older blonde woman were already waiting to meet the instructor.

    @Moonlight Phoenix
     
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  2. Moonlight Phoenix

    Moonlight Phoenix Phe Member

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    [​IMG] Vacation was hard to explain to a working animal, especially one used to high adrenaline situations that managed to work every ounce of his body into exhaustion. Here there was just too much time on his hands. His handler; Adrian had set up a small part time job derived from his experience as a ‘water-dog’, something small and easy as he liked to put it. At least it was a start of a life outside this glorified house boat he had been given as some sort of payment. Reese could only see it as a rather unflattering attempt to force his life interests to change to something more mundane. Florida wasn’t the first place Reese would call home but like always nowhere felt completely like home.

    Old habits died hard however, any place he went was always shadowed by the faintest smell of gun powder and polish. Locked away within not too far of reach whenever a need should arise he was always prepared for the unexpected. Someone once said he had far too many guns for his own good but it was a memory Reese didn’t allow himself to get too close to anymore. Instead he allowed the sounds of the sea mixed with Morgan ensuring him he would never have to leave dry land. Curling up on the lounge chair facing the open water without a soul in sight with distance sea gulls laughing into the night the elder longed for something he couldn’t put a finger on.

    The next morning started like any other- taking a run as a stray along the beach line just before sunup. Following roads of curiosity only to find dead ends at each one before returning home to the docks. His new wave of tourists had came in with yesterday’s dawn and had settled in for the most part. It didn’t matter he had a doggie-dog installed on his front door or that he and his “dog” where never seen together at the same time. John had always played the excuse he was a skittish mutt who only seemed to enjoy the likes of him but only in short periods of time. Usually once human curiosity was sated he was pretty easy to ignore.

    Another successful dive making sure everyone came back alive free from muscle cramps and sudden panic attacks as they jumped outside their comfort zone before realizing they could do it… at least in a twelve foot deep conditioning pool. More than once Reese had been gallant enough to allow other males- usually the more meek, seem superior in front of their significant others to give them the confidence boost needed just to make it to the next step. He always assumed it was the mutt in him longing to make others happy. A perpetual burden of genetic proportion as Adrian said. Shaking his head as John looked over the next wave of first class recruits, keeping in mind of his handler’s recent request.

    ’Highly enthusiastic’ and mainly ‘private’ in lessons. Translation; instead of his usual whole class would be cut down to half. It didn’t matter to John who these gentleman were, it mattered to Adrian- enough said.

    Gathering his things in only a way the military could raise, leading Reese out the door in less than five minuets. Where other instructors preferred the more casual approach old habits died hard, for John wet suit bottoms specially made for extra flex cutting off just above his navel with a white crew cut tee in order to cover up as much skin as possible to hide his chest where scars would lead to questions he didn’t want asked. Keen blue eyes stood out the array of hues matching the surrounding scenery, with bare feet connecting to the earth as much as possible. “Welcome Dive class- 017. My name is John- I’ll be your dive instructor for the duration of your stay. By the end of it we will be meeting down by the beach for a ceremony and certificate.” Encouraging voice followed a smile that didn’t quite reach the depths of his eyes. Gazing at all the faces until reaching the last, to the untrained eye it was just a look but John knew he lingered a few seconds longer than he should have.
     
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  3. Riddle

    Riddle Resident Ace Administrator

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    [​IMG] Grant pulled a tube of sunscreen from his bag to begin slathering it on his fair skin, holding it out to Luca when he was done. "Nah, thanks," Luca said with a shake of his head, waving the offer away with one hand. "I've never burned, no matter how long I spend in the sun."

    "Hey, that doesn't mean you ain't damaging your skin," Grant rebutted. "It just means you can't see the damage, which makes it that much more dangerous. I'd rather smell like Banana Boat that have 'em take a chunk of my nose off because of skin cancer later," he huffed. Part of him was just secretly envious of the naturally tanned look his friend sported year-round. Luca's skin was a perfect honey-color even in the depths of winter when everyone else was turning pale, but in the summer the sun deepened that color to a light bronze and brought out an almost golden tone that perfectly complimented the warm shades in the waves of his near-black hair. By contrast, Grant's fair skin was dusted with freckles that matched his ginger hair. It didn't matter how long he sat in the sun: the only thing he would be sporting at the end of the day was a burn that would peel and leave behind nothing but more light skin.

    Smirking as he stretched his arms up over his head, Luca's shoulders lifted in a tiny shrug. "I guess I got my dad to thank for one thing, at least, 'cause we know my mom's skin is as delicate as yours," he teased. That tawny skin and dark hair was where his resembled to Adrian Milas ended though. The strong cheekbones, soft slope of his eyebrows, full lips, and natural wave in his hair were all compliments of his mother. He'd been embarrassed when he was younger to hear people comparing them, but age had him appreciating the resemblance more. Hannah was a beautiful women - even now in her late forties - and there was no shame in being told her took after his mother.

    The door opened, garnering the attention of all three students. The man who had failed the exams would have made four, still smaller than what Luca would have expected. He hadn't taken a close look at the class information, unaware that they had been enrolled in what was essentially a private class. In the next moment, however, it wouldn't have mattered as Luca forgot everything about the class for a few heartbeats. His gaze was focused on the instructor, lips parting softly as he watched the man's long strides eat up the distance between them. Luca couldn't be the only one whose eyes wandered from broad shoulders down the man's lean torso to admire the way those wetsuit bottoms clung to his legs like a second skin.

    A sharp elbow to his ribs barely phased him, Luca shooting his friend a look that said he had no intention of not ogling their instructor for the next three days. Like hell. This was vacation and he intended to indulge in looking at every beautifully craft male body that crossed his path... right after he was done imagining how those thighs would feel beneath his hands as -

    "Luca," Grant hissed, nudging him a little more gently this time. "We're supposed to get our gear ready," he said with a roll of his eyes, knowing exactly where his friend's mind had gone. No matter how many guys their age hit on Luca, the man had a serious thing for old dudes. Sparing a glance at their instructor, however, Grant couldn't really blame him in this instance.

    Clearly having missed everything that had been said - with the exception of the instructor's name - Luca's eyebrows drew together in confusion before he knelt down to begin pulling his equipment from his bag. The woman who was with them walked over to John to get assistance with one of the class kits, all three students looking appropriately awkward as they pulled on wetsuits for the first time. Satisfied that he had managed well enough, Luca shifted some of his gear closer to the edge of the pool and began checking everything the way they had been taught in the classes before lunch break. Regardless that everything was new, he still looked over the hoses, o-rings, bite tabs, and gauges. Feeling confident that he was keeping up with the others, they all seemed to get a little lost when it came to attaching the regulate to the tank valve, Luca not too shy to pull out the laminated instruction book that had come with his gear to look it over.

    Unfortunately, his delay in reading meant the woman in their class snagged his buddy before they could pair up for the buddy check. Scowling a little, Luca fastened the last of his gear, mask hanging around his neck, and considered his actions for only a moment before strolling over to John. Up close, it was only that much more apparent just how tall the man was. Luca wasn't short, but he still found himself having to look up, a fact which should have been intimidating. Instead, he practically purred, "Think you can handle checking me out?" There was an almost playful gleam in his eyes, the pool bringing out the more vibrant greens amidst the flecks of amber. "A buddy check, of course," he clarified more politely.
     
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  4. Moonlight Phoenix

    Moonlight Phoenix Phe Member

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    [​IMG] Pulling his thoughts together in a manor only befitting a professional, John quickly went over the check list before having the rest of his class do the same. From fins to respiratory gear with everything in between. Taking a few more moments to allow everyone to get started before questions started flying left and right, it seemed it didn’t have to wait long. A woman, Judith, came over holding out her class given kit hosting a rather clueless look. Giving her a warm smile to set her at ease, Reese went through her checklist item by item. When Judith was busy adjusting her buckles, John dared to steal a glance behind the woman’s form toward the one whom had captured his attention earlier.

    Being a man a few words John suddenly passed on an idea to influence Judith’s attention elsewhere other than where she had been aiming. “Since you are having so much trouble, I suggest pairing with someone a little more ‘comfortable’ in the water?” Having her gaze followed John’s trained eye to Grant whom had already packed on his gear ready for the next set of instructions. “Just in case something goes wrong I’d feel more comfortable having a helping hand close by.” By bringing up the fear of failure and resolution of success it made it seem like the best option. It didn’t take long for Judith to find her ‘dive buddy’ leaving Reese to gear up himself.

    With his back facing everyone, John skillfully slipped his shirt over his head replacing it with his wet suit top bringing the ensemble together. Sensing the presence behind him long before scent erupted through his keen nose. Outsiders from the city or country had a distinct scent; earth mixed with murky city only this one didn’t come close to any of that. Summer rain falling over open ocean was the closest Reese could come to and even then it didn’t give the student justice. Straightening up as tall as an oak, John’s vision inclined allowing him a full view close up. A look of confusion washed across the instructor’s features. The collar around his neck where wet suit melted against his skin suddenly became tight. “Pardon?” He asked mentally flustered but with a voice smooth as thunder.

    Reese had seen the look flickering behind playful eyes even the others’ tone beckoned him to reciprocate the feeling of friendly flirtation but John held firm. Allowing no trace of interest to linger for too long despite being highly interested. Breathless ‘Ha’ followed before a curt nod. “Of course.” Standing back half a step to take in the full front of his pupil seeing as everything was in order nodded with approval before slowly circling the back only to notice the long strap dragging down the zipper instead of securely tucked away. Without a word John reached up to drag the lead line up his slender back allowing the tip of his finger to drag sensually over his skin all the way up before tucking it in for him. Most would have over looked the subtle action that spoke volumes to others. “Need to always keep this tucked away. Your gear might snag.” It was obvious the way John’s voice had dropped the simple touch had done more that peak his interest at the same time he didn’t want to lead the other on. Being a young pup, Reese doubted the likes of him would even interest him.
     
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  5. Riddle

    Riddle Resident Ace Administrator

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    [​IMG] The instructor's apparent disinterest would have been more disheartening if this had been anything more than a vacation. As it was, Luca felt like he had a free pass for the week; he could have fun flirting with anyone he liked, knowing the chances of ever meeting these same people again once he returned home were slim to none. Grant and Luca had already agreed that, aside the time from the time they spent in class, the rest of the vacation was completely open. If one of them showed up at the hotel room with a "friend", the other would find a good excuse to go check out the town for a while. He'd already caught Grant eyeing one of the receptionists at the hotel and figured it was only a matter of time before he'd have to make himself scarce for a few hours.

    Needless to say, John's professional demeanor wasn't off-putting in the least and the playful light in Luca's eyes didn't dim as the man merely checked his suit out. The hairs on the back of his neck, however, did stand up when the instructor slowly circled him, leaving Luca feeling as if some kind of animal was appraising whether to attack him or not. That was purely imagination drawing on his own fantasies, thoughts quickly laid to rest as he reminded himself that the wetsuit would only hide so much in the way of bodily responses. Flirting with the instructor was harmless enough, but having everyone witness the depths of his depravity would be too much even for him - Grant would laugh his ass of and Judith looked like the sort to file a sexual harassment charge against him.

    "Tha-" Luca started to say, thinking John was done with the inspection until he felt the brush of a hand against his back. The single fingertip that trailed slowly up his spine was entirely unnecessary unless it was to silently convey that the instructor was only feigning disinterest before. An almost imperceptible shiver ran through Luca from head to toe, that simple touch a mere tease that in any other situation would have him demanding more. Would John give in as easily as so many others did? Leaving him disappointed and frustrated? Listening to that deep voice as it seemed to roll through him, Luca was determined to find out and he had two more days after this to convince John as well. The way John held himself and conducted the class seemed to indicate that the man didn't slack in any area of his life, but damn if Luca didn't want to test that theory himself.

    Taking a step closer to the instructor as he turned around, Luca deliberately brushed against him in what could have looked like a simple miscalculation in just how close John was standing before he smoothly moved back. "A professional," he said approvingly before adding in a more teasing tone, "If I need any help getting out of all this gear, I know where to look." His eyes flicked over the man from head to toe once more before catching his gaze, holding it just a moment too long before joining the other two next to the pool again.

    Grant was the first to brave the water, which they had been warmed was kept at about the same temperature as the dive site out on the water, so nobody was expecting it to a balmy hotel pool. Dipping his fins in until the cool water covered his feet, Luca would have been more interested if they were actually on the ocean with all of the unknown beneath them. Here there was only the bottom of the pool, though that did seem awfully far down in the deeper end. The number at the far edge of the pool indicated it was twelve feet deep while the area they were in was only four feet deep. He wouldn't get to the ocean by sitting here all day, pushing himself off the ledge and into the water with that thought. The cool water was a shock at first, a welcome one that banked the heat that had been building in him. It didn't take long for the wetsuits to begin working, the water trapped between their bodies and the neoprene quickly warming.
     
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  6. Moonlight Phoenix

    Moonlight Phoenix Phe Member

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    [​IMG] Where Reese found females alluring, delicate even- there was something about the male physique that drew out the most savage impulses. The need to dominate and control with a ruthless hand in the same instance make them yearn for nothing else but to fight to become his second. Never trying to be anything else than what he truly was- an animal, there was only one person who had ever understood that and John doubted he would ever find that again. His mindset was if a male wanted his devotion they would have to prove their worth. To challenge the frigid depths of his savagery to find the glorious loving hand underneath. He had lived a lifetime serving man and the patriotic dream mortals had wrapped themselves in. Born and raised with gun in hand, marching to someone else’ orders so when it came to John’s canine heart it would take nothing less than absolute submission.

    Pain and pleasure walked a fine line in John’s world, unyielding and sharp. One slip either way and his life was forfeit. He hadn’t gotten this far in life by making rash decisions even though it would have been a lie to say he wasn’t tempted a time or two. Mortals could lie just as easily as anyone else another lesson learned at an early age. But damn being trained in the art of observation, taking note to how this student was silenced by a single touch as if knowing exactly what Reese wanted without having to say a word.

    If the salt ridden air had been still for just a moment perhaps John would have been able to catch to slightest change in pheromones from the other. Giving him a more sense of how to handle him but instead it didn’t take long for the young buck to brush against him in such a way there could have been no mistake to a trained eye skilled in such ‘casual’ maneuvers. Inwardly taking it as a challenge he was unable to hold back the ripple effect along his hackle. It was enough to catch him off guard, a million to one chance in itself. Just as quickly the mind interpreted the flirtatious gesture. Dangerous waters he wadded into without fear, how far would he go until the depths swallowed him?

    Memories of fearless youth before cruel correction warped Reese as a child, that spark of fire drawing him in. “Don’t run to your death.” For most this was simply a metaphor yet to John it had once been a way of life. SEAL Teams conducting raids that put them in close-quarters combat scenarios, resistance is often the best approach. Once you breach and gain entry to the target, being slow and methodical often wins the race, hence his choice of words. If this mortal needed correction Reese would be the one to do it. Taking in the heated look like warmth from the sun, he left his student with nothing more than a curt smile- allowing the other to walk away.

    Today would be easy, just a few laps with fins and snorkels. Tomorrow the fun truly began but for now Reese was happy for the light exercise after the slight ruffle from earlier. Nearly impossible to move mountains yet this boy was able to brush them away as if crumbs from the table- unnerving, exciting, all in one. Instead of treading into the shallow waters the mentor dived head first into the deep end allowing every ounce of air to leave his lungs, sinking lower and lower until noting but the sound of the body’s natural rhythm filled his waking thoughts. The cold a distant factor being canine the natural temperature ran at a constant one hundred-two degrees, bracing as it may have been it was more than welcoming. A few moments later Reese broke surface in order to gather everyone for the first lesson.

    During the course John didn’t have the need to speak other than give a few helpful tips here and there when needed, otherwise time passed quickly. Allowing the students to frolic and get the hang of their sea legs only to remind them tomorrow would be a little more challenging. Exiting the pool Reese made sure everyone was safely out before leaving them to their own devices while he continued to dry off, taking a rest poolside.
     
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  7. Riddle

    Riddle Resident Ace Administrator

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    [​IMG] Don't run to your death. Those words stuck with Luca as he wandered with his classmates towards the deep end of the pool. Taken at face value, it was a warning to stop. Didn't everyone have the good sense to run away from death? Luca had learned long ago that he lacked what many would consider good sense. There were secrets he kept even from Grant, desires that would earn him labels he wasn't ready for yet. There was no good sense in wanting to feel the sharp sting of teeth and nails against his skin. Not simple bites or scratches that came with any romp, but aggressive marks meant to claim. Those were only the tip of the iceberg when it came to his fantasies, yet he'd been told enough times that even that was asking for too much.

    Watching John dive into the water, Luca couldn't help thinking that he might have a better chance of finding what he needed if he took the time to talk to his partners first. For all he knew, he had been flirting with a completely straight man who had been married thirty years and just found out he was going to finally be a grandfather. The instructor's words echoed through his mind again, not as a warning to turn around, but simply to slow down and plan things out a bit more...

    The water lapped around his chest as John broke the surface and beckoned them all closer to begin the lesson. Luca, no matter his interest in the instructor, wasn't about to fail the course simply because he wasn't paying attention. He turned his mind towards listening instead, following the instructions given and doing his best with each of the practice exercises. By the end of the lesson, he was comfortable in the water with using the fins and submerging. All of them were excited to try things out on the ocean tomorrow with their tanks on, the smile that had taken over Grant's face leaving Luca feeling that maybe - just this once - he should send his dad a 'thank you'.

    It wasn't until after they were out of the pool that Luca's gaze deliberately sought out the instructor again, his hand pausing on one of the straps he was helping Grant with. "What do you think about going out tonight?" Grant asked, gaze following Luca's and hoping the offer would be a welcome distraction. "Grab a meal at the hotel, then hit up some clubs. It is Miami, after all," he pointed out.

    The smart thing would have been to go along with Grant's idea, but Luca still couldn't help thinking that John hadn't exactly told him to stop. "No," he said as he shook his head. "I think I'll just rest up for tomorrow."

    For all of his teasing earlier, Luca turned so that Grant could help him with a few pieces of his suit he still wasn't accustomed to reaching and he peeled the neoprene off. Leaving it hanging over one of the racks set up to help dry the equipment, he grabbed his backpack and padded to the changing booth to switch his swim trunks out for jeans and a sleeveless shirt. Both hands worked to straighten his wet hair at least a little before sliding his sandals on and heading back out to pack away the rest of his gear. Judith had taken everything inside to the showers and Grant was still changing, leaving the pool entirely too quiet. The sound of the zipper on his bag seemed too disruptive, the brush of fabric as he hoisted it up even more so. Glancing at John again, Luca hesitated before striding over to hold out one hand. "I'm Luca. I probably should have said that earlier," he smiled almost sheepishly, though his entire demeanor was too playful to ever be called shy. "Is there anything we should know for tomorrow?"
     
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  8. Moonlight Phoenix

    Moonlight Phoenix Phe Member

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    [​IMG] Stealing a moment of privacy to sneak away into the back, using the staff lounge to change into something a little more comfortable. Beige shorts that fit perfectly on the back in all the right places unlike most youths who like to wear loose and free. Combing his hair, straightening his ice blue polo collar that made John’s eyes stand out more then they already did despite it being by a lack of design. Where most canines were color blind Reese was lucky enough to have been spared that particular ailment having allowed him to excel in the program. Sufficiently dressed to Reese’s standard he came back out front to see everyone had neatly placed their gear on the drying wrack allowing him to set everything else up for the tomorrow since this had been his last class for the day leaving him free for the duration.

    Between trying to figure out what to do with himself after this as well as the task at hand a voice behind him broke through his thoughts, pulling John back into the land of the present. Seeing the same handsome face only this time offering a name and a handshake in return. Taking the smaller hand in his own, long fingers coiled around the back of Luca’s before using a gentle squeeze of a man’s grip. Unknown to the other with a little more pressure John had the capability of breaking every bone in the younger male’s metacarpus. Giving him a nod before releasing already knowing his own name hadn’t been missed this became to feel surreal.

    John might have been blowing this clear out of proportion but the agent couldn’t for the life of him figure out why this male was making such an effort. Most tagged him as damaged goods and left well enough alone but Luca was persistent with flirtatious transparency. Brave boy. Where Reese was more discreet with such things youth wore it like a badge of honor, something the elder could never seeing himself doing. Taking one for the team all for the sake of the job was one thing, hell even he and Aidan had had a fling decades ago only for it to end in mutual friendship. It didn’t help years later he became John’s handler but it was dealt with and life moved on.

    “Don’t forget your gear and show up on time are usually the most important.” Not to mention his standard reply. Not one for conversation he was the one in the room who could have been surrounded by people and be satisfied by just the company. In a way he wasn’t against Luca’s company. “I haven’t seen you around- vacation I’m guessing.” Waiting to see if his assumptions were correct John hoped he would intrigue the youth to perhaps stick around a little longer.
     
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  9. Riddle

    Riddle Resident Ace Administrator

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    [​IMG] Florida was notoriously warm, yet that still didn't explain the intense heat of John's hand where it wrapped around his own and offered a polite squeeze. Luca had heard that some people were veritable furnaces, leaving him to conclude that John was one of the 'some people' referred to in those instances. For all that, his attention was caught more by the intense color of the man's eyes. They put him in mind of tropical water, the kind they had plunged into off the edge of the boat when they were kids... that blend of sapphire and turquoise that was so easy to get lost in. At least, Luca had always been fascinated with the ocean and all things that resembled the ocean. He knew it was likely the pool was partially to thank for the hue John's eyes boasted, making him wonder for a moment just how much more vibrant they would be out on the water tomorrow.

    The strap of his gear bag began to slide down one shoulder, but Luca easily hefted it back up, moving a hand to adjust the nylon webbing so that it was tucked between his neck and the shoulder pad of his backpack. Tomorrow he'd leave the backpack at home, the gear bag being large enough to hold everything he would need. "I think we can manage that much," he smirked. "I can't guarantee we'll completely awake, not with Grant planning to spend the night club-hopping," Luca said with a roll of his eyes. There was nothing judgemental about the statement, just a soft affection for his friend no matter what his plans entailed. Lips parting to tell the instructor they'd see him tomorrow, Luca paused at the unexpected comment, head tilting ever so slightly as his eyes narrowed just a fraction.

    "Over five million people live around Miami. I would seriously be impressed - and flattered - if you'd noticed me at all before," Luca teased before relenting in a softer tone. "It's kind of a vacation. This is my dad's way of bribing me to look at the Florida Atlantic University down here. Can you tell it's working? Grant and I have both been wanting to try scuba diving for years." Grant would have eventually learned in college, as his chosen field of study required scuba diving, but this gave him an opportunity for head start. Luca just enjoyed any opportunity to explore his oceans more, and it didn't get any more up close and personal that actually diving into the water.

    Looking over his shoulder as he heard Grant start gathering his stuff, he turned back to John with that same small smile. "See ya tomorrow," he shrugged, his sandals making a light smacking sound as he walked over to meet Grant halfway to the doors leading back inside. Reaching to open one of them, he held it for Grant, then looked back to give John a curious glance. "You know the best place to eat around here?" Luca asked, figuring it was something a local would know better than anyone else... yet he also felt John would offer a better place than just Applebee's or Olive Garden.
     
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  10. Moonlight Phoenix

    Moonlight Phoenix Phe Member

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    [​IMG]Florida might have seemed large in comparison to one but to another who has traveled the globe in search of every dark corner known, John had grown to establish a ‘territory’. Could have been an acer or country side wherever he stayed forcing himself to become accustomed to seeing familiar faces, scents that devise a territory in which Reese made point to patrol religiously. Thinking carefully for a moment before surrendering a glimmer of hope. “You’re someone not easily forgotten.” Once out into the open trying to force the wave of unease at bay despite his emotions betraying nothing of the inner struggle. Reminding himself he still had two classes to secretly admire the spunky youth above all the inappropriateness of fraternizing with clients. It was simply unprofessional. Yet at the mention of Grant and the night-out they had planned, John wasn’t able to suppress the change in his demeanor.

    If it was even possible Reese seemed to shift his stance in such a way to posture. Broadening his chest and shoulders enough to test the hems of fabric as waves of muscle tightened underneath making John’s profile more defined as a silent indication;’ your chosen mate is adequate but you can do better.’ Unappeasable features however looked accepting, perhaps Grant was simply a friend. Justifying in his own mind didn’t make John feel anything less out of his league. Clearing his throat all the while coming back to his senses and conversation at hand. “No one can force you to do anything your heart isn’t into. Don’t let them try.” Offering simple advice but not overpoweringly so. Only irony is his words held as much meaning and weight as a chambered hollow point.

    Sending Luca off or so he thought, drawing him back to the depths of emerald isles. Silently thanking every deity for him being new to the area and landing him right into John’s back yard. For the first time since their encounter a genuine smile drew across mature features, bringing out every defined line of years of hard work, laughter and life. “Actually I do.” Keeping the information to himself for a moment longer Reese dared to add. “If you’d like all I need to do is clock out- I could use a drink myself.” Insinuating he could show them the way and part company.
     
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  11. Riddle

    Riddle Resident Ace Administrator

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    [​IMG] That smile was the first that truly struck Luca as being real, and it was worth the risk he had taken in putting himself out there so boldly. The smile that answered John's was less flirtatious than his earlier ones, filled with nothing but simple delight as he gave a quick nod. "Sure," he agreed. "We'll wait out front, there's no hurry." As if anyone actually wanted to stay on the clock any longer than they had to. He could have mentally kicked himself over both that dumb comment, as well as for being so obviously eager to accept John's offer, but Luca was too pleased with the situation to worry about such things.

    Grant was less pleased, rolling his eyes and heaving out a sigh as the two made their way back to the front of the center, which doubled as the gear shop. "Seriously? I thought we'd be hanging out this week, y'know, before we both head off to college," he grumbled.

    One eyebrow lifted as Luca gave his friend a nudge. "So it's cool if I stay at the hotel by myself, but not if we let someone shows us a place to grab dinner? Seriously, Grant, I thought we had agreed that we could each do our own thing this week," he rebutted. Tilting his head a little, Luca's gaze narrowed as he pushed open the door leading outside, holding it with one arm for Grant to walk past. Glancing over his shoulder, he waited until they were both outside and the door closed before poking his friend dead center in the chest as he accused, "The only reason you're upset is because he's older."

    That was what was bothering Grant, but he hated to admit it. They were in Miami, surrounded by the hottest men they were ever likely to meet, and Luca had set his sights on someone who could easily be their dad. "I don't even fucking know, Luc. I just - you're missing out. The only reason you turned down clubbing tonight is because of that guy. He doesn't even seem interested," Grant said as he swatted Luca's hand away. "What ya wanna bet he's married and gonna be phoning him to tell his wife he's working late? All so that he can -" Luca's sharp look cut him off.

    "Is that something you think I'd allow?" Luca challenged. "After the shit my dad pulled? Listen, you do things your way and let me do things my way. Okay?" Grant might be satisfied with casting his chips out across a sea of men, bringing back a different one each night, but Luca was more selective. When he found something he liked, he was willing to put all of his energy into pursuing that one thing - or person - until he either had it or it was made clear to him that he couldn't have it.

    "Whatever," Grant nodded. "I don't wanna fight about it, just... be careful. Please?" Giving a Luca's shoulder a squeeze, he offered a conciliatory smile. "Think I'll head back to the hotel to clean up, if you think you're good."

    Miami was big, but Luca had visited big cities a couple times and felt certain he could navigate well enough. There would be buses that ran past all the major hotels, including theirs, so he nodded for Grant to go ahead and take the care. "Yeah, I'll be fine. Don't worry so much," he smirked. "Go have some fun."
     
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  12. Moonlight Phoenix

    Moonlight Phoenix Phe Member

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    [​IMG]Seconds seemed to turn into a long minuet being burdened with the weight of promise. A man being use to dodging bullets while taking the fight directly to the enemy now stood on pins waiting for a simple answer. That alone was agonizing. The worst Luca could have said was ‘no’, reminding himself. Just a common place word but why did it worry him? Expecting nothing less than the sting of rejection in which he couldn’t blame the other in the slightest. By no means did John find himself ‘attractive’ or suffer from a inflated ego. Perhaps in his youth, a sapling that had yet stood the trials of harsh seasons until growing into what he needed in order to survive. Unwillingly Reese admitted to himself every time he had to face a mirror there was more salt coming in, more wrinkles creasing expression lines. He had to work a little harder to keep figure but thankfully not to the point of having to deal with dietary restrictions. Shifter metabolism at it’s finest.

    There was no doubt this shifter was slowing but still kept the edge of a predator. The only way to ever stop John Reese would to put him six feet under. He had been put on this earth to do a job what wasn’t taught by his military surrogate was creating a life outside the walls of death. That was all for Reese to discover- lumps and all.

    ‘Sure’, eyes snapped up from the deck to meet wild hazel gleaming with something John couldn’t explain. A warmth filled his chest spreading downward to envelop his gut. Could it have been, joy possibly happiness? Unsure of anything at this point. A little warmer smile than before broke over Reese’s lips despite feeling a little foolish because he couldn’t wipe the damn thing off even after he vanished into the back. Working mouth muscles back into regular rest before meeting co-workers as they left for the day to change shifts, it had been the fastest anyone had seen Reese clock out since he had been working there. Locker stowed away and keys in hand he realized a small predicament…

    Before leaving something caught his making John turn rigid like a bird dog finding quarry. Surveillance cameras posted in various places caught every area on property grounds, including the front of the gear shop. Call it professional hazard, any whom Reese had an infatuation or cared about would be bound to some sort of tracking device- Adrian was subject even if completely unaware. Body language suggested Grant was on the defence with a little lip reading it wasn’t hard to derive where the little spat started. Instead of worrying John made a mental note before moving on. After all, not every one was a dog person.

    Sweeping the door open with a brush of his hand only to see Luca standing solo. “Where is your friend, Grant? Is it?” Feigning interest to the whereabouts of Grant. “Swimming usually takes a lot more out of you than people realize.” Adding onto the excuse of absence. When it seemed like they were all set, leading the way out to the parking lot. “Have you ever heard of ‘The Sea Chanty’?” John asked. “It’s a little hole-in-the-wall dinner but it has the best menu of surf and turf. Think of grandma’s kitchen with granddad’s drinking habit.” He jested.

    John’s strides became deliberately slower until both stood in front of a motorcycle. Body of a Triumph with the heart of a Ducati. Personally built from the ground up it by his own hands every inch was custom made to make it look like any other bike out there. Gears all in military code and time frame of twenty-four instead of the standard twelve. Black and sleek it could hit amazing speed with agile maneuver if ever needed. Not holding on to much in his life this had to be one of the very few items John ever truly owned. Reaching into the back cavity that would have been a ‘trunk’ John pulled out a secondary helmet, straddling his mount before handing it over to Luca. “I know you can swim… Can you ride?” Reese asked before sliding the black visor into place keeping the other void of his expression as he kicked over the motor.


    [​IMG]
     
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  13. Riddle

    Riddle Resident Ace Administrator

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    [​IMG] Grant was reluctant to just ditch Luca in the middle of Miami, but he knew there was no swaying his friend once he'd set his mind on something. Luca was stubborn to the point of being pure bull-headed when it came to some things, never one to back down from a challenge... not even the challenge of navigating a city the size of Miami on his own. Admittedly, his friend wouldn't be completely on his own, but that somehow made it worse. What if the headlines tomorrow boasted of a body found on the beach or dropped on the side of the highway? Hannah would beat his ass for letting Luca go off on his own...

    Recognizing that look in Grant's eyes, Luca waved of his protests before he could even voice them, marching his friend over to the car. "I'll be fine, Grant. Look? Got my cell phone, wallet, room key," he said as he held up each item before tucking it into a pocket. His backpack and gear bag went in the trunk of the white Nissan Luca had bought only a few years ago. Watching Grant's bags join his, he closed the trunk and opened the driver's door just to be sure Grant didn't change his mind. Grant changing his mind would really be Grant trying to talk him out of this. That wasn't happening. Not today.

    Striding back towards the front of the shop, Luca looked over his shoulder as he finally heard Grant pull away. Well, that was that. He was now officially on his own in the city, the very thought sending a thrill through him. These were the little tastes of excitement that Luca lived for, adding to the brightness of his eyes and the smile he wore even before he saw John step outside. "I don't think I would've blamed you for slipping out the back," he teased as he silently admired the way the late evening sunlight caught the silver threaded through the man's hair. "Eh, Grant and I are kinda doing our own thing this week. He wanted to clean up and hit a few clubs; I wanted to grab dinner and rest up before tomorrow," Luca answered honestly, one shoulder lifting in a shrug to indicate it was no problem.

    Both hands slid down into the pockets of his jeans as he felt in step beside John, lips tilting into a small smirk as he couldn't resist teasing the poor man some more. "Hmm.. you caught me. I definitely know all about this Sea Chanty. This was just a ruse to coax you into having dinner with me," Luca nodded. He tried to sound serious, but a light laugh worked its way out anyhow. "I mean, maybe it was a bit of a ruse, but I've honestly never heard of The Sea Chanty and I honestly did want to know the best place to eat. We're gonna have to switch it to 'grandma's drinking habit' though, seeing how my Nana starts tipping back that Irish coffee before the sun is even up."

    Luca's tone softened as they drew closer to a motorcycle, eyes flicking around in search of a car or truck or SUV, because there was no way he could be this lucky. Scuba diving and a bike ride all in one day? Glancing up at John, he didn't know what to say, which was truly rare. "Seriously?" A motorcycle? He got to ride a motorcycle? All too eager to accept the helmet, he grinned like an idiot as he shook his head. "Hell no," he said in a tone that made it clear he didn't give one fuck whether he knew how to ride or not. The only thing that had a chance of keeping him off the back of that bike was the man inviting him to sit on it.

    Fumbling for just a second with the strap on the helmet, he got it on quickly enough, thinking nothing of setting his hands to John's shoulders to keep his balance as he swung a leg over the seat. Luca adjusted himself a little before letting go of the man, peering over each side of the bike to figure out where to put his feet, then reaching along the edges of the seat on either side of himself to try finding some kind of handhold. The purr of the engine could be felt straight through to his core, filling him with excitement that was made all that much better knowing who was sitting in front of him.
     
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  14. Moonlight Phoenix

    Moonlight Phoenix Phe Member

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    [​IMG]Roaring to life underneath John’s palms, ready to hit the pavement the moment his foot shifted off the clutch. Glancing over to reflect the image of Luca’s excitement through the black polarized helmet visor. Underneath fabric clad shoulders rippling indifference with a mere shrug. Sharing in the moment, John felt himself trying to contain his own sense of exhilaration. Strong legs kept the bike steady even with hands laying across his shoulders for balance. Harmless as it may have been it was enough for heat radiate against Luca’s palms to the point there John noticed the cool rush of breeze at their absence.

    Able to plant his feet firmly on the ground with ease as it moved to accommodate a second. “You seem surprised.” John’s muffled tone made louder with a look over his shoulder watching Luca fiddle with footing. While the back was sleek like a race horse’ hind quarters small finders on each side looked like an extension of the tailpipe but just wide enough for a foot hold.

    Without thinking Reese contorted his long frame to reach behind him. A guiding hand took Luca’s bare ankle on the left side bringing it up until the soul of his shoe rested firmly on the tread revealing to the other where to brace himself. It took a second longer than John wold have liked for his hand to leave Luca’s limb chalking it up to nothing more than wanting to make sure the other had a sure footing. In John’s presence this mortal’s chance of harm coming to him were slim to none; as if the canine would even allow it. But it didn’t mean he wanted Luca flailing around on the back either remembering a certain instance when during transport a partner suddenly engulfed him like an octopus, screaming his bloody head off, searing up and down Reese was trying to kill him.

    He hadn’t been so happy to drop someone off in his life. Like a fish to water, Luca demonstrated a little more sense. Thank god. “It’s not too difficult, mainly balance.” Countering the others’ eagerness. An unseen gaze watched Luca’s hands starting an inner war if he should have left well enough alone or move them to his hips- for a better grip of course. Averting forward while readjusting his center of gravity the bike revved and Reese kicked off sending them smoothly on their way.

    Wild, winding winds whipped against every exposed surface. Not nearly going fast enough to make the surface tension feel like sharp stings but more like a sunset breeze. Where most would have probably focused about showing off or scaring the living daylights out of a newbie rider, Reese kept to the rules of the road. There was no rush to get from point A to point B, no high speed pursuit with the danger of having a lucky shot landing its mark, it was a feeling this man wasn’t use to. Glancing behind his shoulder ever so often just to gauge Luca’s expression guarded by the silver helmet.

    Weaving in and out the beach side view he took the long way to their destination, allowing Luca to take in the sights before dinner. Pulling up in front of a semi-modern establishment with decorative words loitering in front. ‘The Sea Chantey’ was favored by locals in the area, the food was like back when mom and pop dinners were most popular. Fresh and made to order, might as well have been still swimming on your plate. Not ashamed to say, Reese had been coming here for more than fifteen years on and off- Marisol and Horatio had taken over when the original creators became ready to retire. Every since it had been just as popular. Killing the engine, unfolding his legs from their perch before reaching up taking off the head gear. Swiping stray hairs back into place waiting for Luca to dismount first.
     
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  15. Riddle

    Riddle Resident Ace Administrator

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    [​IMG] Luca would have sworn he could still feel the heat of John’s hand where it had wrapped around his ankle even after the man had turned back around. Settling himself more securely with the foot treads, his stomach flipped a little as they actually began to move, physics rather than John’s sturdy legs responsible for keeping them upright now. It didn’t long for his hands to find the lean hips resting in front of him, fingers lightly gripping the fabric of John’s polo as his grip shifted a little higher to hold his waist. It was easier to sense the small movements that kept that from simply tipping over then, to feel the way the other man’s body shifted as he leaned with each turn and to move with him instead of flopping around on the back of the bike.

    The wind caressed his bare arms, tickled the hair at the back of his neck, tugged at his clothing in a way that Luca found exhilarating. He didn’t notice whether or not John was keeping to the speed limit, because being exposed to the open air like this made even the slowest speeds feel like freedom. Remembering a few times he’d pushed his car up over one-hundred on the straight stretches of back road at home, Luca knew that had nothing on this. This felt like all the moments in his life where he’d been filled with nervous energy combined into one.. and he reveled in it.

    As glimpses of the water began to show between buildings, Luca found himself relaxing more, slowly sliding forward on the seat - momentum, of course - until the warmth of John’s back touched lightly along his chest and the insides of his thighs. “This is amazing,” he called over the rumble of the engine and the traffic and the breeze.

    It seemed over far too soon as they pulled into a parking lot, Luca almost dismayed to see the sign for the restaurant. Even after the engine cut off, he could still feel it vibrating through him, leaving his legs a little shaky as he climbed off. “I can’t believe I get to go scuba diving and ride a motorcycle all in the same week,” he smiled as he tipped his chin up to feel for the strap and take the helmet off. His own hair hadn’t fared as well as John’s, the helmet flattening the messy waves as they dried, but Luca couldn’t care less. Offering the helmet back, there was nothing but honesty in his gaze as he said, “You’re an intriguing man, John — - what’s your last name?”
     
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  16. Moonlight Phoenix

    Moonlight Phoenix Phe Member

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    [​IMG]Certain turns, slow stops causing sinful friction Reese found his mind torn between being painfully aware of the firm hold on his hips and conscientiousness needed to operate the roadway. When they finally parked it was a sad relief. “It truly is a magnificent view.” Finally commenting other then a over the shoulder nod even if he wasn’t speaking about the skyline. John had been stationed along side Adrian when becoming partnered along the key’s for the past decade. Choosing Fort Zachary Taylor Beach as home base for the most accessible beaches in the region, and it's prime spot for snorkeling and diving. Take a look under its crystal waters and John would show you where to find more than 75 square miles of sea grasses and coral reefs. It’s massive picnic areas, public grills, long winding beaches perfect for evening and morning runs, snorkel gear rentals, and a quaint cafe made it easy to blend in seamlessly.

    John knew the in’s-and-out’s of this territory like the back of his hand. When it came to Luca however there was something he couldn’t place. Familiar yet foreign all tied up in a bundle of rich, tan muscle making his mouth hunger for a taste. “You make it sound like this is all new.” John teased taking the gear back and stowing it away. Thinking perhaps for this young pup, maybe it was. Following the youth’s lead, John’s movements more or less ‘stepped off’ rather than a dismount. Having already stepped on the curb to head inside waiting for Luca to follow suit. Before he was able to say anything otherwise his question made John pause.

    Depths of smoldering turquoise eyes flickering trying release a fraction of control. “Reese.” Speaking softly if for only Luca to hear. Chuckling nervously. “Most people just call me Reese.” Trying to make it sound more casually. Truth was ‘John’ was more of a last name, something someone gave him to help him be as close to normal as possible. It would take more than a name to ever make it so.
     
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  17. Riddle

    Riddle Resident Ace Administrator

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    [​IMG] This was all new to Luca. No doubt the atmosphere - a big city right near the ocean - was adding to all of the excitement, beneath that however was the simple fact that life in rural Northern Florida hadn't offered much in the way of excitement. The biggest event each year was the county fair, where they were lucky to see a ramshackle carnival set up with a few rides that all the kids outgrew before they even entered high school. If anyone back home had boasted a motorcycle, it was the kind that sat in the garage, perpetually being "worked on" rather than actually ridden. Scuba diving? Well, nobody went scuba diving in the muddy creek, though Luca thought that neoprene would have a good barrier against the suckers that like to leech onto anyone bold enough to swim in the tepid water.

    Watching those eyes seem to battle with the innocent question he'd asked, Luca's expression softened with the way John's tone shifted. The guy was easily head and shoulders above just about everyone Luca knew, a proficient scuba instructor, drove a bad-ass motorcycle... yet he was beginning to realize there was something almost shy about the man. At first, he'd thought John was just rather standoffish. Now he wondered if it was just a combination of being the strong, silent type with a little dash of nerves thrown in to balance everything out.

    Luca's smile warmed as he gave a small nod, repeating the name just as softly as John had. "Reese," he tested on his tongue, the name sounding almost like a caress. "Would it be odd to say that suits you better than John? John always makes me think a clerk or an accountant," he teased as he wrinkled his nose before striding towards the building with a bounce in his step.

    The inside of the restaurant was everything he would have expected from the outside, decorated in an appropriate nautical theme and the air rich with the scent of fried fish. There was already a sizable crowd inside, testament to it having - as Reese had said - the best surf and turf menu. A waitress looked over at them from where she was sliding plates onto a wide tray, calling out with a friendly smile, "Take a seat anywhere, gentlemen!"

    Spotting the patio door open and a few people seated at the tables out there, Luca automatically started that way before suddenly pausing to look up at Reese. He had never been one to seek validation on anything, yet in that moment what he wanted most was for Reese to approve of his seating choice. The older man had probably been here enough to know where the best seats were. "Outside?"
     
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  18. Moonlight Phoenix

    Moonlight Phoenix Phe Member

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    [​IMG]Everything about the towering man seem to lift if only in the slightest movements a human body would allow. It’s equivalence; same as a dog who’s name had just been called. Undivided focus from all else but one single focal point. Not even Adrian in all the years of their friendship had dared to get such a look that was coming from Reese at this very moment. Unable to do anything but agree and follow the youth’s lead even though a thrill like nothing in this world made him feel rejuvenated despite the long day. A stern gaze hid perverted eyes that admired the outright swagger, holding the door for the both of them on the outward swing.

    Hit by a sudden assault of the senses other than the wall of scent which had mutated with the amount of humans pouring in and out wafting around their own version of a ‘clean’ smell. Perfume of various qualities for women and the usual cheap cologne for men mixing with the thick oil based air nearly made him grimace. When the door swished closed behind them sealing them inside it was as if Luca has read John’s mind. Leaning low to make sure the other head him over the roar of the people speaking at their own frequencies. Pointing forward. “Out past the row of tables there is a small veranda over looking the ocean. Everyone overlooks it.”

    Taking point and leading the way past the sea of people to the freedom of outside. Making sure to dodge waitresses and passing stares mostly due to his height. Everywhere he went Reese always managed to grab silent attention. Turning the corner just as he promised, a quiet nook where the ocean was all the eye could see. One chair faced all open views with a wall at one’s back, instinctively Reese choose vigilance. Leaning over raising a hand to catch the eye of a waitress who motioned ‘just-a-second’. Settling back in his seat, leaving them both to the weight of their surroundings.
     
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  19. Riddle

    Riddle Resident Ace Administrator

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    [​IMG] Luca's gaze travelled along the sturdy line of Reese's arm where it pointed towards one of the open doorways that led outside, his mind so caught up in the memory of how those long fingers had wrapped around his ankle and how that low voice rumbled in his ear that he almost missed what exactly at was the older man said. "Veranda," he repeated before it clicked, eyes brightening as he gave a small nod. That sounded perfect, especially if it overlooked the ocean and they could enjoy the fresh breeze off the ocean instead of the aroma of greasy food - no matter how his stomach rumbled with all the scents drifting from the kitchen.

    Following along after Reese, he couldn't keep the smile from his face as he watched how easily he cut through the restaurant. Anyone the man didn't step out of the way for was quick to move aside on their own, seeming to understand that he was both on a mission and far too much for anyone in this crowd to handle. There was something exciting about watching Reese's shoulders as he moved, faint twists and turns of his body teasing Luca as the fabric of his shirt would stretch for a moment over a muscle. He rather regretted not letting his hands linger a bit longer when he'd had the chance while mounting the motorcycle, teeth catching his bottom lip as he debated taking the opportunity when they left the restaurant to test just how Reese's shoulders would feel beneath his hands.

    "You know the best restaurant and the best seating," Luca hummed as he watched Reese pick a chair before debating between the remaining seats. If he sat across from Reese, he wouldn't get as nice a view of the water, yet he'd get the opportunity to study the man better with that choice. The matter decided, his slid into the chair across from the man and reached for one of the laminated menus tucked into a caddy in the center of the table. Reese might know the menu, but Luca didn't want to hold everyone up trying to read it over later when the waitress was trying to take their order. Even so, it didn't take him long to decide on what he wanted - filet mignon and lobster meat skewers with rice, as relayed to the waitress when she came to take their orders. Luca turned down any of the offered wine or beer selections, opting for water that would be better for staying hydrated after a day spent in the sun.

    All of Reese's behaviors had begun to add up in his mind, though Luca was polite enough to wait until the waitress had collected their orders and was out of earshot before he leaned forward, arms folding on the tabletop. With the late evening sun sinking just to Luca's left, the amber flecks in his eyes were brought out, gaze finding Reese's before he asked, " Ex-military?" It made the most sense, all of the evidence bringing to mind little things he had remembered from living with his dad all those years ago. "Military haircut, military time on your bike, you addressed our class by it's number, you picked the chair that gave you a solid wall at your back and a clear view of everything else..."
     
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  20. Moonlight Phoenix

    Moonlight Phoenix Phe Member

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    [​IMG]“Perks of staying in one place for too long-- you learn a few things.” Reese admitted. A keen gaze watched the approaching waitress unable to help the apprehensive nature underlying his movements. Keeping his arms to down at his sides, sitting straight back against the chair’s support like a coil ready come undone at a moments notice. While Luca ravished by the day’s exertion, Reese found himself stated for the time being. “Beer, house brew with a side of chips.” Speaking mindlessly. Unable to be left wondering what other ‘appetites’ possibly lay under the handsome face sitting across from him. Bronze prince amplified by the backdrop looking as if it had been specially made to grace Luca in a beauty only befitting him.

    John could have spent a lifetime getting to know him only time wouldn’t allow such pleasantries. Reminding himself in two days this spark of light would be gone leaving him back to where he was before. A part of him needed to make the most of this encounter.

    Just like that, after relaxing a twinge when it was just the two of them again. Sipping on the distilled water provided first Luca had been able to catch him like a deer in headlights. His expression must have expressed the wonder just before the other explained. Dread was the first feeling to wash over his soul knowing wave after wave of lies building paper bridges destined for ashes. Defeated Reese nodded confirming what Luca had known all along.

    Unable to keep his gaze any longer, Reese looked into the depths of the water left in the tall glass. Suddenly fascinated with the buoyancy of melting ice rising. “U.S Special Forces Airborne transferred midway to serve for Navy SEAL.” Stating the information as if reading it from a text book. “Retired …for the most part.” Adding with a new found confidence that forced wild eyes to rise. “Still consult here and there when staff is stretched thin.” Saying nothing more.
     
    • Fabulous Fabulous x 1
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