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#21345
It somehow hadn't occurred to her that just because brooms were used in this quidditch she'd heard about, they could also be used for other things. Like racing. And they had.. flying carpets? Like in Aladdin? And duelling! She got the feeling he didn't mean with swords, and the idea of watching two magical folk hurl spells at each other sounded simultaneously thrilling and terrifying. All of this sounded so enthralling that she ended up looking at him with a starry expression, her face nearly split in two with a grin.. until he suggested taking her flying on a broomstick. That made her eyes widen and her smile disappear into an 'o' of surprise. That sounded.. oddly intimate, as unless magical broomsticks were much larger than normal ones, that would mean some very close quarters.

..Then again, she was damn near in his lap at that very moment, so maybe Morgan shouldn't have been scandalized by the notion of riding a broomstick with Tom Farley. She swallowed thickly as she truly realized just how close they were, and it seemed to make the warmth of him against her side all the more intense. Surely that was just her imagination, this abrupt realization of man at her side. It had been so long since she'd been close to a male like this, after all, and it wasn't like they were anything more than.. fellow explorers? Friends, even? Perhaps it was actually friends, because he said he didn't think she was weird, and to her own astonishment, Morgan believed him.

She completely forgot about the dragons, and sat there looking at his profile in the wan moonlight, clutching her camera in small hands, while Tom told her about his doomed foray into the world of romance. Three years was longer than any she'd had, by a great deal. Six months was her record, which was a little sad, she supposed. But maybe it was better than what he was describing. Morgan was no expert in human behavior, didn't understand most people, to be honest, but she thought maybe she had an idea.. one she didn't get chance to voice before he was apologizing. She briskly shook her head, and gave him a smile that was undeniably warm, if a bit shy.

"No, it's okay, you didn't ruin anything. I.. like listening to you talk. You have a very pleasant voice, and.. well you probably get this a lot from silly American girls like me, but your accent is extremely attractive."

Oh, god, had she actually said that out loud? Normally Morgan didn't much care when her slightest thoughts completely bypassed the filter between her brain and mouth, but that was a horribly embarrassing thing to admit. Feeling an intense flush steal into her cheeks, she looked quickly away, focusing instead on (unnecessarily) fiddling with her camera while she tried to stammer her way into a different line of conversation. He was good-looking, smart, nice, interesting.. she had the sudden powerful fear that he'd figure out she thought all those things about him, just by looking at her.

"Um.. I'm not good at understanding people, like you, but.. maybe she just didn't want to be alone? ..I don't really know. I.. well, maybe this is my complete and total lack of experience talking.. I think it would be nice to be with someone who understood me. No one ever really has. I just think it might be.. comforting, to be able to not even have to say anything, and have the person I'm with know just what I need. Maybe that's stupid of me."

Played By: Kat
#21740
Tom looked to her, his face softening at her comments, but he soon allowed her smile to drop. The way she was looking at him; she seemed so genuine and earnest - it was almost a kind of naivety. He was still a stranger, and she was speaking so openly, even if she didn't mean to, and her body language told him more than he even needed to know. He hadn't seen her heard these kinds of things directed to him in a long time, and as flattering as it was, there was something else hanging over him that he simply couldn't ignore.

"Morgan...I don't think you're stupid. In any way. I'm not entirely sure why you speak so lowly of yourself, why you feel the constant need to dismiss your own opinions after saying them." He looked to her then, in the eye. "You came here on your own with a purpose in mind. Despite what anybody else said, you took a hold of your life and dreams, and you set out to achieve what you wanted to...and you did. You're sitting right here next to a wizard and in front of dragons. And sure, you don't know about magic...but that's not your fault, and why would you unless you set out to do so? I don't know about photography or writing for entertainment, or fashion, or investigative journalism, or even how to make a leap like you did."

It saddened him that she thought this way about herself, or at least,put everybody else above her. Even if she wasn't as talented as she was, it would still dishearten him to know that someone felt so internally conscious that they felt the need to put a disclaimer on anything they said. It made him think back to the prison - there were a lot of them that enjoyed the shock value from their opinions, and sometimes, it was even more evident that they did it solely for that purpose. But once he figured out they were lying...it was the same thing; they would brush off their opinions and ideas because they felt they were unwanted. He didn't think Morgan was en route to being a criminal, but it was an interesting idea that two entirely different types of people suffered from the same affliction in some way.

"You shouldn't say you're stupid or a silly America girl. You have opinions and thoughts and ideas and creativity - we always battle for our individuality not to be squashed, so why do it to ourselves? You've achieved so much. You're ambitious, brave, creative, empathetic, charismatic, beautiful, and intelligent. Why dismiss that? Say what you mean,say what you think, and if people don't like it then that's their problem. They can try and tell you otherwise, but that doesn't take away from the fact that you can express how you feel and what you think, even if they're not globally accepted. There are magical folk that would look down on what I'm doing now, but I believe what I'm doing isn't a bad thing, and so I'll continue to do it."

Played By: Vyreia
#22158
Well, that wasn't at all expected. His chastisement, even if it was telling her not to be so self-deprecating, surprised her more than a little, making her eyes widen. She'd never really looked at it that way. Morgan was so used to everyone, whether it be her mother, coworkers, acquaintances, whoever, telling her that what she was doing was ridiculous, or ill-advised, or crazy, that she just automatically apologized for her thoughts and behavior. And here Tom was, complimenting her madness.

No one had ever called her brave before. Or charismatic, or intelligent, and certainly not beautiful. She got 'unique' and 'interesting' a lot, and one time her mother said she'd be pretty if she didn't dye her hair and got rid of the piercings, but that Tom would call her that as she was... Morgan realized her face was heating again, and she just knew her pale skin was turning a brilliant shade of red. Embarrassed and uncertain how to respond, she instinctively lifted her hands and put them over her flaming cheeks, letting her gaze fall away from him to peer self-consciously at the blanket in front of her folded legs.

"I'm so used to being the abnormal one. I make people -- other Muggles, I mean -- uncomfortable by being so different. I learned early on to apologize for what I say and do.. for just being who I am. It's a hard habit to get out of. Even though I realized very quickly that it doesn't really fix anything. People still avoid getting close to me, no matter how much I apologize. I just can't act normal for them.. and I wouldn't even if I could."

She didn't share the thought that this only perpetuated her loneliness, but she supposed it didn't really need to be said. It was obvious. Her gaze lifted from the blanket to the skies as one of the dragons roared, and a small smile appeared on her face again for a few moments. Then her attention hesitantly turned to the wizard at her side, and her hands drifted down from her chest to instead curl anxiously against her chest, knuckles resting against her clavicle, while the tip of her tongue darted nervously across her lips.

"Do you normally call Muggle girls nice things like that, or am I just a special case because I'm an awkward ball of anxiety?"

She tried to make it a joke, but failed miserably. Much to her own horror, she realized she had a small but gradually developing crush on Tom Farley. Which was a terrible thing, because if no Muggle man wanted her, why the hell would a man who could literally do magic? She was just going to get attached and get her heart broken. Again.

Played By: Kat
#22166
Tom nodded along as she spoke, listening carefully to her words. He would glance to her every now and then, but thought it would be better if he didn't hold eye contact for her sake - it sometimes made people nervous. Maybe that was it. Maybe she was just nervous around him, and why wouldn't she be? He was practically a stranger who she was aware had magic; she could be fearful of her life right now, concerned about saying the wrong thing in fear of being hurt by him. He knew women were sometimes wary of Muggle men as it was, but a wizard? It seemed to make sense in his mind.

At her question, he turned his head, lifting a brow. That was a bit unexpected, although, he did suppose it was a reasonable question. It only reaffirmed his previous thoughts - she could possibly think that this was all just a ruse, or some kind of sick entertainment. Of course, that was a very bleak presumption, but there was really no need to overrule it entirely, right? It was a very real and serious matter. Why wouldn't she question his integrity? It showed the signs of a smart girl considering all possibilities, even if they were somewhat grim.

"Well...not particularly as I don't tend to spend a lot of time with Muggles. I know a few, but they have never expressed any interest in magic or the unknown. I know a lot of Squibs, though they are completely aware of magic, just without magic themselves." He pursed his lips, thinking over her words again. Now that he thought about it, they didn't sound like the right thing to say if you was wary of someone, they sounded more like she was flirting. He cleared his throat suddenly, glancing over at her.

"Um...am I making you nervous? Why are you going red? Are you embarrassed about something?" He asked, looking over her face.

Played By: Vyreia
#22243
Her joking semi-flirtation went right over his head. And that was somehow worse than if he'd just straight up shot her down. Like the idea of flirting with her was so ludicrous he couldn't even perceive that she might be trying to instigate the process. Morgan felt that nauseous twisting sensation build in her chest as the embarrassment and hurt blended into an awkward melange of disappointment, which was only heightened by the questions he lobbed at her soon after.

Quickly ducking her head to hide her face, as she knew her expression and her eyes in particular had always been extremely expressive, she blinked away the sudden tears. God, she was stupid. Just because he was nice to her, it didn't mean there was anything on his part that was more than curiosity. When was she going to learn to guard her feelings against rejection? ..Probably never, to be honest. Her loneliness drove her to hope for those connections, and always left her aching and bereft when they failed to manifest.

"No, you're not making me nervous, and no, I'm not embarrassed."

She hoped she sounded normal enough, although she couldn't muster up a good lie about why her face was red. The truth was too horrible and she'd never been a good liar. Swallowing down her sadness and disappointment, Morgan lifted her head and her camera simultaneously, forcefully turning the full brunt of her focus toward the dragons, snapping pictures of them with a single-minded determination. She wasn't sure whether to hope they'd linger, or pray they'd leave soon so she could escape from this quagmire caused by her own stupidity.

Played By: Kat
#22313
Tom furrowed his brows, looking over at her when she spoke. That was a little more blunt that her previous comments; he wondered why? What prompted her to become so defensive so suddenly? Had he said something wrong? Surely not, he had only explained his relationships with muggles and squibs. Perhaps that was the problem; maybe she wanted him to go more in depth. He wasn't so sure. For a criminal psychologist, it was strange to not know what people's processes were. then again, it wasn't so often that a criminal would be genuinely shy and flirtatious with him - it wasn't a telling sign.

Carefully, he leaned forward a little more, trying to catch her eyes, attempting to see her expression. He thought over the words over and over, and had felt her physically deflate after his words. It must have been something he said, or perhaps more accurately, something he didn't say. He looked down with her, and it soon began to all fall into place. She had turned somewhat shy, and semi-flirtatious after he had complimented her so directly. Did it perhaps mean that...

"Morgan." He started, lifting his hand up and moving the camera out of the way of her face. "I'm not a particularly romantic person. I'm too analytical and serious for that...so if I said something that made you think that...well, what I mean to say is...I am attracted to you. If that's perhaps what you're embarrassed about. If not, then you can sweep over that, but really, I would like to consider this a date with you want to, too."

Played By: Vyreia
#22501
Feeling his movement, Morgan studiously focused on the task of snapping pictures. But when she saw his hand move into her peripheral vision, she couldn't help but stiffen. Her camera was everything to her, not just the main source of her income. It was her happiness, her comfort, her shield in a cruel and unforgiving world. The tenderness with which she always endeavored to handle the thing probably told Tom a good deal of this. And so would her actually allowing him to touch it, to move it away from her face. That didn't stop her from glancing down at the ground and fidgeting, not wanting to hear the firm rejection that was likely about to come.

Or not? Surprise made her eyes go round and flick upward, her gaze settling on his face while disbelief flashed across her own. He was.. attracted to her? He wanted to think of this as a date? Her mind immediately began to run in panicked, flailing circles, trying to process this information, not to mention come up with a response. None of her attempts at romance had ever borne any fruit. She was new to this magical world. This man was handsome and smart and for some completely illogical reason, he was interested in her. What should she do?

Her mind not know what to say, but her heart apparently did, because she blurted out words from a mouth that felt like it had been stuffed with cotton, it was so completely devoid of moisture. No doubt a side effect of her sudden powerful anxiety.

"I'd like that. A lot."

Once the words were out, and she'd fully digested them, she realized she was starting to smile. It was a shy thing, but tinged with happiness, and she couldn't stop herself from ducking her head again as her face grew warm. She fiddled needlessly with some of the knobs and buttons on her camera, murmuring softly.

"I didn't think you could possibly find me interesting.. that way. Our worlds are so different.. and people tend to keep to their own. I just.. you're handsome, and nice, and smart, and.. I felt stupid because you're all those things and how could you like someone.. like me. And I'm babbling again. Sorry."

Gah. She really needed to stop that.

Played By: Kat
#22553
Tom lifted his brows, but soon couldn't hold back a smile at her rambling. The more she spoke, she cuter she got. Though in some way, it was a little troubling to him; had she really been so underappreciated that she felt the need to over explain like this? It was almost like she was trying to convince him not to partake in a relationship with her, or at least explain why she acted the way she did. Perhaps nobody had told her that it was okay to just act without analysis. It was a cliche really, but actions really did speak louder than words.

And that was when it hit him. He was doing the exact opposite of her in the same manner - where she tore herself down, he tried to lift her back up with words and compliments. Of course it wouldn't work; she had the negatives so far ingrained that it would be nearly impossible to make her see the positives in such a short amount of time. That, and it was all a good reason to act rather than speak. He'd of course been thinking about it, but hadn't wanted to push the boundaries.

"Don't be." He said simply.

With that, he brought his hand up, gently touching her chin with his index finger to angle her head up, and began to lean down, catching her eyes for a moment. "You can tell me to stop." He said lowly, before leaning in a little further to graze his lips against hers. Finally, he pressed in and kissed her gently, his other hand resting on her forearm.

Played By: Vyreia
#22656
The look on his face made her blush all the more furiously. She really needed to work on the whole babbling thing. Or maybe it was the unnecessary apology that made him look at her like that? Either way, Morgan felt flustered and happy all at once. Words weren't her forte, but they were her fallback, making just as effective a shield as her camera, which is why they tended to pour out of her when she was feeling vulnerable or nervous. It was very good at keeping people at a distance.

She definitely didn't want Tom at a distance. And he was very much not distant right then. Either emotionally or physically. In fact, he seemed to be getting a good deal closer. Wait, what was he doing? She inhaled sharply at the thrill that ran through her when she felt his skin against the tender underside of her chin, tilting her head up while he was... Oh, was he going to kiss her? Morgan felt her heart began to thunder, and she anxiously licked her lips, her gaze dropping to his lips just as they moved to impart those words. She would've shaken her head, except she didn't want to dislodge his touch. It was quite nice, after all. So she uttered a breathless response instead.

"I don't want you to stop."

Barely had the statement left her than he was kissing her. It was gentle, sweet, barely-there, and made her breathe a tremulous exhalation. Morgan had been kissed before, she wasn't completely hopeless after all, but she wasn't exactly an expert. That didn't stop her from leaning closer to him, her small hands moving to rest on his chest as she let herself get wrapped up in the kiss. Oh, yes. This was wonderful. Maybe he was doing something with his magic, or maybe it was just the moment, but she felt warm all the way from nose to toes, and when they finally parted, she looked pleasantly dazed. To the point where all she could manage was one word in comment, albeit that one word was laden with a bevy of sentiments, amazement and appreciation most notably evident.

"Wow."

Played By: Kat
#23003
Tom gave a small smile down at her, finding her reaction rather interesting. She was definitely unsure and shy about herself, but she had still melted into the kiss, and even allowed it to happen. It made him pleasantly surprised that she had returned it, as soft and sweet as it was. Although, he was positive that had it been any other way, it wouldn't have been quite right. The slight tremor to her breath and nervousness added to the situation; it made him want to wrap his arms around her and protect her from this scary new world.

So that's what he did. Her brought his arm around her waist and pulled her close, smiling at her exhaled word. "Wow indeed." he responded in kind, lifting a hand up and brushing some bright hair out of her face gently. He tucked the strands behind her ear with care, looking into her eyes before finally leaning down again, pressing into another kiss. This time, he pulled her closer, feeling her body against his, the warmth of her touch, the beat of her heart in her chest.

It all felt so good, and far more rewarding than witnessing dragons.

Played By: Vyreia
#23086
Although she was slightly more prepared for it this time, Morgan was still taken a bit by surprise when Tom suddenly wrapped his arms around her, but not enough that she fought him. Oh no. She went quite willingly, sinking into his embrace while her hands slid upward. She was a very tactile person. She liked to touch and feel and experience whatever she could with her hands. Unfamiliar textures were fascinating to her, and while she wasn't completely unknowing of the feel of a man's skin beneath her fingertips, something about the sensation was electric in that moment.

Perhaps it was because, as her fingers slid across his stubbled jaw and back into the groomed strands of his hair, he was kissing her again. This time, Morgan met him eagerly, her lack of experience not even factoring in as she threw herself into the act of kissing him. It wasn't long before her arms were sliding around his neck, pulling her small form tightly against his.. until her camera end up sandwiched between them, pressing uncomfortably into her sternum. She breathed a sound of combined irritation and discomfort, hastily pulling away and unwinding her arms from around his neck as she muttered.

"Dammit.. stupid..."

Then she was doing something she never did. Pulling the strap over her head, she carelessly dropped the precious item to one side, and immediately returned to what she considered a far more important activity. Melding her body to his, her lips found his again with a newfound confidence born of yearning and a hesitantly-forming desire. He didn't seem to mind that she was strange, and he was attracted to her. How could she not be drawn to him so powerfully?

Played By: Kat
#23343
Tom was enjoying, sincerely getting into the rhythm, enjoying her touch and embrace and- ah! Something pressed into him, something moderately sharp. Or perhaps more firm - firmer than her torso was supposed to be. He suddenly felt her pull back, and her voice under her breath. Once again, he was about to correct her self-scolding. As much as it did alter the moment, it really wasn't something to worry about. It was clumsy, perhaps, but it was perhaps something to look back on.

Just as he was about to speak, he watched her toss it to the side, his brows furrowing. He had said from the beginning that she had evidently put her heart and soul into her camera, and even in the past hour or so, she had been protective of it. And now she was placing it to the side. He was only allowed to consider it for a moment before he was pulled into another kiss, and at the realisation that he was the reason she had placed the item to the side, he felt himself becoming overwhelmed.

Immediately, her wrapped his arms around her again, dragging her in close, pressing his lips firmly against hers. He once again ran his hand through her vibrant hair, his other arm cradling her back as he began to lean her down onto the blanket, enjoying the feeling of getting closer to her. He moved his mouth away, beginning to kiss over her jaw, trailing soft kisses down her neck and back up to her ear. He whispered softly against her skin.

"I'm glad I met you, even if just to experience today." He spoke, leading his hand down to her waist.

Played By: Vyreia
#23465
Had she been less wrapped up in the moment, Morgan likely would've wondered just how much Tom would analyze her casting aside her precious, beloved camera in favor of kissing him. Blessedly, her usually runaway brain was able to ignore such idle thoughts for once. Or any thoughts at all, really. Her senses and everything else were wholly encompassed by the warmth of his body against hers, the taste of his lips, the scent of the cool night air, and the sounds of their ragged breathing as they kissed. In fact, she was so immersed in the sensations that she didn't even realize what was happening until she felt the back of her head meet with the blanket-covered ground.

Her breath hitched, and when Tom's lips broke from hers, her breathing hitched. Though that was less due to the sudden cognizance of how intimate their positioning was, and more because he was kissing her skin, the unexpected feeling causing a shudder to course through her body and leave goosebumps rising on her arms. Her hands came to clutch almost desperately at the back of his coat, though not even Morgan knew if it was to get him to stop, or to encourage him to do more. She was, without doubt, completely inexperienced, and the fact of her blatant virginity was forcefully thrust to the forefront of her mind.

His words soothed her somewhat, bringing a lopsided and slightly nervous smile to her lips, but there was still an undeniable tension in her body as she breathed a quiet response.

"Me too. This has been.. the most amazing day of my life."

She swallowed thickly, and took a slow, deep breath, intentionally focusing on making herself relax. Tom seemed like a gentlemanly fellow. ..Well. Current positioning aside, anyway. She sincerely doubted he was going to ravish her right here on this blanket in the middle of the night. She just felt.. awkward. No one had ever displayed such interest, and she wasn't entirely sure what to do with herself. Uncurling her hands from the fists they'd tightened into, she reached up so that her fingertips could shyly stroke his cheek and delve into his hair, still somewhat in awe that she was here. Doing this. With him.

Played By: Kat
#23476
Tom smiled down at her. Where Morgan could push away those thoughts and enjoy the moment, Tom was the opposite. He couldn't help it; he was so drawn into every action, every word, every breath, every omitted word that he couldn't stop analysing everything. This was perhaps what his last partner had left him for. He was too intense, too involved, too everything. It was like he was reading a script, taking cues from her body language of what the right thing to say next was, and it was a habit that was hard to break.

Morgan was a person that he couldn't read so easily as she was nothing like those he surrounded himself with - but he was starting to learn. He was picking up her ticks and tones, the way her eyes flitted about when nervous, her nervous stuttering over words. And because of it, he was beginning to figure out what made her act the way she did...for many women, this was not a fun experience to be examined in this way. It was a fatal flaw in Tom that he couldn't deny nor fix so easily.

Seeing her tense up a little, and feeling her nervous actions, a new thought began to enter his mind. He paused, looking down at her, brows furrowed. It made sense...but did he want it to? Did he even want to acknowledge it? There was a time with his last girlfriend that he would have ravished her here and now, out in the open without a care in the world. He felt like doing the same here. And yet he hesitated.

"Morgan..." He started, hitching himself up to lean over her. "Have you done this before?"

Played By: Vyreia
#23712
The way he looked at her was.. definitely not something Morgan was used to. No one ever seemed interested in looking at her for long, but Tom seemed to find her both fascinating and pretty. It was a novel experience, to her, and one that both made her smile, and filled her cheeks with color. Mild embarrassment was a good term for it, but she also.. enjoyed it. How could she not? Such positive attention was a nice change, and she basked in it, much like a cat in a sunbeam.

All of that vanished when he raised himself up over her and asked that question, making her eyes widen. Oh. Oh. So he wanted to... Well. That was a change, too. She bit her lower lip, worrying it between her teeth, as she pondered how best to answer him. Honesty, of course, but... Did she want to do what he so obviously wanted to do? That was a question Morgan had a harder time answering. She'd never been one of those girls who thought about things like imagining their dream wedding, or what their first time would be like. But if she had, maybe she would've envisioned a night just like this, one filled with magic and moonlight and a handsome man.

"I.. um.. well.. no? Is.. is it really.. that obvious?"

She felt herself almost seeming to shrink, as though she were trying to disappear into herself. She wasn't ashamed of her innocence, really, but.. she'd always thought men found that off-putting. Would Tom spurn her, now that she'd basically admitted to being a virgin? Did he want someone with more experience? Swallowing hurt at the thought, she dropped her gaze to one side, awaiting a likely rejection.

Played By: Kat