A Magical Roleplaying Experience 

 #24506  by Zi Shang An
Location: Zi Shang's home in Creuse, France • Date: Sunday, 6 April 2003

Spring gales whistled against the walls now that the skies had turned dark. Through the window in her kitchen, surrounding hills and valley meadows were but swathes of shifting shadows in a pale wash of moonlight, and a cluster of flickering lights in the far discernible distance marked the nearest countryside town. Zi Shang had picked up her guest from the train station in town earlier in the day, after spending most of the day preparing her home. The guest bedroom had needed a dusting down, and the linens were all freshly washed and pressed, and she had laid out some towels in case Reiner wanted a shower, which he expectedly did.

It felt nice, having something to look forward to.

It also felt nice to do her own housework. She had not known it was something she missed doing whilst in Mitchell. Dishes merrily washed away in the kitchen sink as Zi Shang ladled leftover dinner stew from the pot into a container for keeping. She smiled slightly as she heard shuffling footsteps draw near from the guest bedroom.

"How was the shower? I hope the shower-head has not been too much of a nuisance."

Too often did the magicked fixture belt out tunes in French even when she might have been looking for a peaceful time. That was something she was not informed of by the real estate agent before she signed the contract on the house.
 #24892  by Reiner Liebhart
Apparating back from a job could be grueling, but as far as Reiner was concerned it beat air travel. He hadn't liked the metal monstrosities to begin with, but now the smell of the planes reminded him too much of his American excursion last year. So even when he was far in the hinterlands of Siberia, Reiner chose to apparate home to London - with the help of an odd portkey or two. It was nice, sometimes. Providing him the opportunity to drop in on family members and friends for a few hours - sometimes even a whole day. On this particular trip he'd already stopped in on Mikki in Moscow, and his uncle in Munich. And since his brother was too busy with work in Amsterdam, Reiner's last leg was a night with his friend Zi in France.

Unlike his other stops, Zi was a much newer addition to his trip itineraries - but still a welcome one. He stepped out of her guest bathroom in his athletic shorts, a loose tee, and a towel wrapped around his shoulders. He padded out into the house toweling off his damp hair as he went in search of his friend. He didn't have far to look, as it turned out.

"Not too much. He conceded. She'd warned him before he'd headed in that it was giving her some trouble, so he'd been prepared when it started acting up. "The shower was a welcome one." Apparating always left him feeling strange - like his skin was tacky and covered in a thin layer of dust. It had nice to shower up after arriving. "Thanks, again." He glanced around her home - it really was a beautiful building. "For the shower, and the bed."
 #24918  by Zi Shang An
Zi Shang covered and set aside the container before leaving the now-empty pot to magically wash in the sink. She picked up a damp cloth, wiping her hands with it as she turned around to offer Reiner a warm smile.

"Do not even worry about it. I am glad you are able to make it here."

She was. Zi Shang had not seen her friend for months. It was common enough, seeing as how the both of them were more often away from their respective homes than actually living in it, and they took care to touch base few times or so in a year. Still, there seemed to be more to catch each other up on this reunion. She was not oblivious to his sudden prominence in the news several months ago. Even from inside the penitentiary, guards and prisoners alike whispered the name, 'EJ del Bosque', and gossiped about the man who had managed to end the terrorist's life where all the magical governments in the world had failed to even locate him.

She hoped it was an achievement that bolstered his career.

"Are you tired? I would not keep you up if you are," the homeowner hung the dishtowel over the handle of her oven and moved toward her wine rack. "I do have a lovely port and some cheeses if you would like to stay up for a little longer. They're both from the farmer's market."
Last edited by Zi Shang An on 10 Dec 2019, 04:51, edited 1 time in total.
 #25498  by Reiner Liebhart
Reiner shrugged. He was always tired, these days. But more than that a glass or two of wine and a stomach full of Zi's fancy farmer's market cheeses sounded even better. "I could go for a glass before bed." He finished toweling off his hair - ignoring how much it was in need of a trim as of late. He hadn't had time to think this past month, much less get it cut. "Besides, I want to here about your latest exploits," he gave her a grin, stepping into the kitchen and glancing around. "Want some help getting everything out?" A flick of her wand and Reiner knew she could have the entire table set, but as the guest it was always polite to ask. Or so his sister and Nika would have him believe.
 #33384  by Zi Shang An
It was a kind offer, but also, really, absolutely terrible, so much that Reiner's friend paused in her quest of picking a wine to briefly direct a look of mild alarm at him over her shoulder.

What kind of hostess did he think she was?

"No," the witch answered in a tone that astoundingly held in it both firm steel and soft gentility. She lifted out a bottle of vintage port before turning around to levitate over two wine glasses from the cabinet. Zi Shang deftly uncorked the bottle, filled the glasses, and held one out for Reiner to bring with him as she gave him a look that might well be the politest way to shoo one away that any human might possibly achieve.

"Please, go make yourself comfortable on the couch. I will be right there with the cheese."

At least there were books and an eclectic assortment of trinkets from her travels that he could browse on the bookshelf in the living room.
 #33419  by Reiner Liebhart
Reiner chuckled and took the glass from her hands. "Yes, ma'am." He wasn't one to argue. Zi was a great host, but he had to offer. If he hadn't he was afraid his older sister would somehow know and call him to berate him for being a rude guest later. She sometimes seemed to have a sixth sense for these things. But his friend left no room for argument as she bustled around the kitchen pulling things out and getting everything set up. Reiner watched, and sipped the wine and moseyed off to the living room. His eyes grazed over the books on the shelf, not really seeing any individual spine while he waited for her to finish in the kitchen. It truly was a lovely apartment - it beat his little cramped studio in London by a mile.

"So what is new in your corner of France?" He couldn't remember the last time he'd been in this beautiful country.
 #33529  by Zi Shang An
"Hmm?" Zi Shang was making her way into the room, bottle of port and her own wineglass bobbing through the air in her wake to rest themselves on the coffee table, where she too set down the humble wooden serving board that she personally carried in her hands.

In the interest of how late it already was and knowing that the wizard would scarcely mind, the items were arranged simply albeit clearly chosen with care. There were slices of bicorn's milk cheese commonplace to every magical household's cooler, except this one was black-flecked; little triangles of what appeared to be brie but were so much creamier in texture that it looked to be practically oozing from the rind; a ramekin that she filled with locally made fig jam; unfussy slices of country bread; and a cluster of Stygian berries not too unlike muggles' blackberries that were newly in season and which she had added as an afterthought. Or a personal craving, evident by the near-involuntary way she reached for one even as she was sitting down on the couch.

"Let's see."

She had only been back for just about two months, and something about the countryside meant that nothing ever quite changed very much even in the small magical town shielded by charms from muggle detection. The dependability was as nice as it was an occasional source of frustration.

"Oh, they finally finished renovating the local train station just a week ago, which I am rather pleased about, actually. It took them a year and half, but I was hoping you would not be arriving to a cloud of dust and tiles falling off the roof as your first impression of the town."