The time flew by. Soon they had been pack up and traveling back to England. The journey was rushed, and tiering, but as soon as they arrived it was none stop moving as well. Security was rearranged, bags unpacks, orders given, snakes put in place... which apparently was very important to Astrid. Her special little spies as far as Simon could tell. And now...?

Dusk was falling once more... No word had been heard from Nathan as far as Simon could see. Astrid had locked herself in her home office and now a silence seemed to fall over the grounds as Simon stared out at them from the back door.

His stomach growled.

Wow... he hadn't eaten since the night before at the bonfire!

Simon turned and made his way back into the house, looking for the kitchen. It was a large room, full of cubords, spacious counter tops, a giant stove top and oven as well as a huge fire place, big enough to cook meals in from back in the day. There was a large table and chairs as well that the servants and security often would use to eat meals on and there... stood Jodie, seeming to have the same idea as Simon as she was busy making a sandwhich for herself, all the fixings spread out before her.

Simon's eyes practically bulged from him head and his mouth began to water. How had he put off eating for so long?!

"Wow... you are a sight for sore eyes..." he said, smirking at Jodie. "The most beautiful sight ever. I could devour you." Gesturing to the food then he said, "Oh, I'm talking to the food. Glad to see you too Jodie."

Walking further into the room he said, "I will give you half my kingdom if you will make me a sandwhich as well."

Funny. He didn't feel half as awkward around her as he thought he would. Not after his train wreck of a conversation with her! The one where he basically admitted he was a creepy, dangerous, psycho stalker... The one where she said she didn't want to go on a date with him any more, and barely agreed to remain his friend.

And the truth was, he probably would have been with drawn and awkward, maybe just turned and left until she was gone but... he was riding on a bit of a bewildered high at the moment. He was just made Astrid's second in comand. He could hardly believe she had so much faith and trust in him! He knew he should be petrified... and he was a bit... but at the moment his head was full of the honor of it all.
Jodie gave a start as she heard Simon's voice. Gah! That man really could be quiet...what a mix; quiet and creepy. It was no worded he was the best sniper - he barely made a sound even with his heavy boots. She cleared her throat as he spoke, cringing internally. He was really going to flirt this much so soon after - oh! The food.

She blinked at him, and then looked down at the counter. She didn't know whether to laugh or scowl. She chose to simply scoff, trying to avoid a bit of eye contact she didn't know how to feel about him anymore. He had been so nice and sweet and yes, a little forward and blunt, but he'd seemed interesting. And now? It had all changed. He'd done unspeakable things and she couldn't get the idea out of her head that he had been watching her, perhaps purposely waiting for her to be there at the exact same moment as him. Even when unpacking, Jodie had counted every bra and matching underwear set just to make sure nothing had gone walkies...straight into Simon's luggage.

"Huh? Oh...yeah, sure." She gave a small smile but then looked back. She'd been around him for a while, and served him food before; so maybe she could just guess what he wanted. He must have been hungry. Lots of meat?

"You uhm...look pretty happy. I guess congratulations are in order?" She lifted a brow, hoping to keep the topic platonic.

Played By: Vyreia
"Yes, right, I suppose..." said Simon, smiling a bit sheepishly as he rubbed the back of his neck and glanced away. Taking a seat then, his eyes watching her movements like a hawk, he said,

"I suppose I should be terrified. And maybe I am a bit. I am still not sure if she is serious... or just trying to make her husband uncomfortable or mad, but still... I would like to think it wasn't spur of the moment and that she really does value me that much. But this is what I wanted. More then what I wanted. I just want to make her proud. I want to do well. And I could really use your help in that. You know her so much better than I do."

He paused, then said, "So... erm... Nathan seems to have a son? You don't think it could be Damian, do you?"
She nodded along as he spoke, hands working on creating her sandwich. She finished up and then moved onto Simon's.

"Damian?" Jodie furrowed her brow, looking to him. "Hera's son? Huh...I never thought...But that would mean Nathan has three kids, right? They're twins so...well...actually, I guess Astrid wouldn't really care about Nikoletta..."

She pursed her lips.

"You know...that sounds plausible as crazy as it is. Nathan and Hera have definitely gotten closer recently. And they went to school together. Maybe...maybe Hera had an affair. I mean..." she cleared her throat. "I guess you should know since you're Astrid's second now but...hera and the Ivers have...An interesting relationship. Maybe not so much after this but..."

She bit her lip, looking away.

Played By: Vyreia
"Yes, I know..." said Simon. "I have caught onto a bit of funny business. And I don't really like it," he said with a frown. "I have always felt very protective of Hera. She is a strong person and can be bold and dangerous when she needs to be but... they are in a whole other league. The only other answer would be Dorian but... Viola married Aida because it was his. Why else would she marry him? She has never thought anything of him other then a one night stand. Aidan told me himself he never even really spoke to her before that night. And with how she feels about Nathan well... I think she would have done anything to ruin their marriage at once!"

He watched a moment as Jodie continued with his sandwich before saying, "I guess it's a good thing you decided it was best not to date me. what with this serious promotion and all... I am not sure Mrs Iver would have approved any more. She didn't say anything yet but... well maybe she would have."

He was trying to make the fact of it better in his mind.

Looking at her quite seriously then he said, "That wasn't very considerate of you... asking me all those questions like that. I am pretty embarrassed. You really took advantage of me in that moment..."
Jodie hummed. "Either that, or it could be some mystery woman." She said flippantly.

She pursed her lips as he spoke, and then glanced to him.

"If Astrid knew she was going to promote you, she wouldn't have said what she did in Sweden. As for the questions?" She shrugged. "And you shouldn't have used me to get off on the thought of Astrid. We're even. A part of me wishes I hadn't but...I needed to know. You wouldn't have told me otherwise, and I would have ended up accepting it if you already placed the amour of love on me. So you're right. Better this way. Here."

She placed the sandwich on the plate in front if him before taking a knife to her own and bringing it up to take a large bite. Merlin that was good. She chewed, swallowed, nd looked back to him.

"It was far easier than the game you made on the ship...I did what I had to to ensure my safety."

Played By: Vyreia
Simon took a few bites in silence, chewing as he mulled over her words. Finally he said after a swallow,

"There really is more to me then all that you know? Aren't you more then you resume? Aren't you more then the worst parts of your history? I wish you could see that. I've done a lot of stupid things because I thought it was an antidote to loneliness. But it never was."
Jodie looked away, shaking her head.

"I know that...But I also know that I can't go into a relationship more than bade level friendship with you. Because if I did, all I would be able to think about is fixing you, which isn't healthy. I am so lonely, Simon...more than you realise. I just...can't bring myself to be with someone just for a night as myself. And I just...I don't think I can relax around you right now. I can try but...sometimes the ability takes over. And usually, it is for gut instincts. I have to trust them."

She glanced down at her skin, frowning.

"When we slept in the hammock, it felt so good. I like to sleep; unconscious, my ability stops...I can be me truly. And it was nice to be that way for so many hours with someone, even if I was unaware of it. But...right now? I don't like the idea of that any more. I don't want you to see me so weak and vulnerable like that after what you told me..."

Played By: Vyreia
Simon frowned, then said, "What did I tell you that makes you not want to be weak and vulnerable?"

He tried to think back over the night. It was a bit hazy. Maybe it should have been obvious. So much to chose from.

Of maybe he just wanted something specific to talk her out of thinking.
Jodie bit her lip.

"It's what you didn't say...I mean, not really but...I mean..." she fingered for a moment before turning to look at him, taking a breath. "The fact that you admitted to having sexual fantasies about hurting me. And then admitting you stalked girls. Fantasized about killing people and then making love in the same room there. How you sneak into girls houses...you never explained that bit, just the stalking bit. I just...I don't want you to get attached to the point of being that desperate. And...And I just...I have this weird nagging feeling that maybe if you was willing to do all that, you have also been willing to do more."

She swallowed.

"I asked if you did anything to me in the hammock. I asked that because I can't help but wonder if...if you have ever done that. Ever taken advantage if girls whilst their sleep. Ever...touched or forced...uhm..." she swallowed and looked away. "That's my biggest fear. The idea of someone..."

She cringed, turning away.

Played By: Vyreia
Simon stared back at Jodie in shock for a moment, then said, “No! Never! Do you really think?...” he shook his head, then putting down his last bit of sandwhich he looked at her earnestly and said,

“Look, Jodie, I can promise you I am not like that. I might be into a lot of messed up stuff but I would never do that. I mean hell... you were sleeping right next to me. I had the perfect opportunity. And I told you I did nothing. You want to know about me? Ask my exes. Ask the women I have slept with. I’ll name them all off for you. Ask about me with my permission. Some of them would probably have unflattering things to say, but there is plenty of good as well. I mean I suppose not from Viola since she tried to kill me, but still. She’s no peach herself.”

Hmm... did he have a normal relationship with anyone? Well at least only one tried to kill him. Unless you counted Zara, but she never meant it.

“As for hurting you, did I say that?” He said, looking very flustered. His face blushing a bit he said, “As I am sure I said... not... like.... that. I mean... In a consensual, way. Don’t... you know what I mean by that? Like just for fun. It can be fun. I don’t mean like Petrolina level shit, I mean.. wait.. let me remember what I did fantasise about,” he said, looking at her intensely for a moment... because that wasn’t creepy.

“Ah.. ok no,” he said after a moment. “Really....” he sighed, put his hands over his face a moment, then said, “A fantasy is just that. It’s not even something I nessesarily want to do. Like... imagine I had a fantasy that Astrid wanted to secretly bed me wile her husband slept in the next room, just for the thrill of it. Do you think anything would actually convince me to do that? Or that I wouldn’t be scared so shitless that I wouldn’t even be able to get it up should it become a reality?”

He blinked back at Jodie a moment, then said, “Look, when you asked me questions last night I wasn’t in a state to explain very well. It was very dream like, half of my emotions were cut off from me, and all I knew was I couldn’t lie. But I never fantasised about literally forcing myself on you and torturing you or anything.”

Strongly pressuring her to go against her better judgment and give into her deeply hidden lust? Yes, that might have been part of it. But literally forcing her against her will? No.
Jodie grit her teeth. Where he had stared at her, she stared back. Her eyes locked on him, breathing in a staggered manner, sandwich placed down.

"Put me in contact with those girls. The exes. I'll take you up on the research."

Played By: Vyreia
Simon looked at her in surprise a moment, unblinking, then he slowly picked up the last of his sandwhich and placed it into his mouth, chewed it for a bit, swallowed, then said, “Alright then...”

He took a peice of paper and a broken quill from his pocket, then hunching over it he said,

“Ok, Viola York, but like I said... she sort of hates me, so talk to her with a grain of salt.”

And would he put it past her to lie...? well there were others that would say good things.

“Zara Shepard...” he said slowly.

Ok, so he had made up with Zara. She wouldn’t be nasty. He hoped. But... Jodie could see Zara was crazy! She wasn’t the best reference. Also if she got into their some times violet love making...

Simon gave a little shiver, then said, “Hera Cleary...”

He didn’t even glance up at Jodie when he said that name. Hopefully she would think it was before she had married his cousin. But Hera had to be on the list! Hera liked him, respected him in an odd way. And he had introduced her to a few erm... more interesting bedroom moves then she was use to, but really very tame compared to Zara... or Petra. So maybe she could explain to Jodie how considerate he was and careful of his partners enjoyment?

Simon paused and pressed his lips together in a frown. He really should leave this next one off. But... well... it was such a good name! Lily... who would have thought? If Lily could survive a night with him, and have good things to say, well...

“Lily Roseworth” he said, glancing at Jodie. “It was just a once night stand.. sort of thing.” He cleared his throat, then said, “Yulianna Petrovna,” writing it down and sliding the paper over to her.
Jodie didn't even flinch at the mention of Zara and viola. She knew it. But then came Hera, and Jodie had gone wide eyed!

So...if that was the case...maybe Simon was the reason for Hera being daring with the Ivers. But was it recent? She would have to ask...

Jodie barely even heard the name Yuliana after the one before.

"Lily!?" She exclaimed, staring at him. "How? I've heard the rumours, I heard from Robin that Marcus was the only one she'd ever been with and he..." she pressed her fingers to her nose, taking a long breath.

"Did she cheat on Marcus...or are the rumours wrong? Did you? The one night stand was her first time...? And...you made her do crazy stuff like that for her first time? Really?"

She shook her head. She remembered her first boyfriend making outlandish requests for their first time...pft, that definitely hadn't happened. Not that she enjoyed it regardless.

Played By: Vyreia
Simon regretted at once saying the name Lily...

“What?! No! Look, Jodie,.. will you get it out of your head that all I want to do is crazy, outlandish things?! Some of my best memories involve simple classics like missionary position! I am not an insatiable sex maniac that can only bring things to the extreme. The most extreme stuff I don’t even care to do with people I am actually in a relationship with! Look, with Lily... it was as vanilla as you can get. And we both enjoyed it for your information. It was all about her, and getting her comfortable, and...”

He threw up his hands a moment, then said, “Ok, yes... it was wile she was with Marcus... but it was more like a service really. She couldn’t even do it with him. I helped her break through that mental barrier. It was just the one time.”