Author Topic: Home  (Read 383 times)

Olivia Storm

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Home
« on: April 18, 2012, 09:20:51 AM »
The time had come. Seven days in the hospital receiving regular heparin nebulisers had eased the damage done to Liv's lungs to the point where she had finally been discharged, her legs free of bandages and only slightly marred by the last healing blisters from her burns. Lucy had rushed out that morning with her sister's cheque book and bought two suitcases, which she had then proceeded to fill with clothes and essentials for Liv to wear and use while she was getting settled. Liv dreaded to think what was in some of the sections of those suitcases, but at least she had found something decent to wear without much trouble.

Ushered from the ward by nurses who were torn between keeping her just to see Johnny again and moving her on to make full use of the bed, she made her way down to the main reception of the hospital, at a bit of a loss. Lucy had said she had called Johnny to come and pick up his girlfriend within the hour, but without a phone of her own - or his number - Liv had no way of being sure it had actually happened.

Johnny was pacing in the lobby while he waited for Liv to be brought down. He'd wanted to go up and meet her but had been told to wait, that she was already on her way down. He had a taxi waiting, and the meter was running. Now that she was actually getting out of the hospital and coming to stay with him, he couldn't help but feel nervous and a little bit worried. He'd spent most of the day cleaning and straightening up, but it still looked kind of stark and unlived in.

Liv couldn't wait to be out of the hospital, her face lighting up with a delighted, relieved smile as she spied Johnny pacing back and forth. For a moment the smile wavered, the sight of his nerves making her wonder if she'd done the right thing in agreeing to his impulsive invitation to stay with him. Then the porter beside her stepped out of the elevator, her new luggage rattling along on its wheels behind him, and she snapped back to the here and now. Pushing her glasses higher on her nose, she took a deep breath and stepped out of the elevator herself, just that little bit too shy to do anything but wait to be noticed.

Johnny was still pacing when she got out of the elevator, nibbling at a thumbnail nervously. It wasn't that he was having second thoughts. It was just that he was a little nervous about what she might think of his place, a little worried she might not like it or find it suitable. It was a bachelor pad, after all, and he hadn't had time to do much with it. Spying her stepping out of the elevator finally, he turned toward her with a smile, his worries evaporating the minute he saw her. He started toward her, smiling. "How does it feel to be free?"

Her own smile was open and warm, her own concerns forgotten in the face of his smiling greeting. Taking the handles of her brand-new luggage, she thanked the porter before lifting her eyes to Johnny once again. "I'm not free yet," Liv heard herself tease softly. "Any minute someone could come rushing out yelling that I need to come back. Wouldn't that be dreadful?"

"Don't worry," he replied with a grin, leaning in to drop a kiss against her cheek. "I'm here. I won't let them." He reached around her for her luggage, a nod of thanks to the porter. No, he didn't get a tip. Johnny didn't have that kind of money. At least, not here, not yet. "I hope you like the apartment. It's nothing special, but it's clean and comfortable." He would have taken her hand, but he had the suitcases to worry about.

Left with nothing to occupy her hands, Liv swung them back and forth for a moment before clasping her fingers together behind her back. "I'm sure it's lovely, Johnny," she assured him confidently. Even if it was covered in underpants and old socks, it wasn't the hospital, and that, quite frankly, made it the Taj Mahal to a woman who'd been incarcerated in the hospital for a week. Plus, of course, it was Johnny's, and that just meant wonderful no matter what it referred to. "I can help with those, you know. I won't suddenly break a leg lifting a suitcase."

He chuckled in response to her remark. "It's not lovely, believe me, but it's home." For now, anyway. It was nothing like his place back home in New York, but he wasn't planning on staying there forever, just til he could afford a better place. "Race is paying for it, so I can't really complain." He smiled over at her as he started toward the door. "You just got out of the hospital. You are not helping with these."

She laughed softly, shaking her head at his stubborn response to her offer as she fell into step with him. For once, she'd decided not to wear heels, needing to tip her head back further than usual to look up at Johnny, but she didn't seem to mind so much today. "And you're absolutely sure this is okay?" she asked for the umpteenth time. "You haven't thrown your room-mate out, or not given him any choice about me staying for a while? I really don't want to cause you any trouble, sweetheart."

He sighed as she asked him yet again if she was any trouble. "Yes, it's okay, Liv. Ben is a big boy. He can take care of himself." And that was not an understatement. No, he hadn't thrown him out, but he had encouraged him to get his own place. "You're no trouble, believe me." With the cabby's help, Johnny stowed Liv's luggage in the trunk and pulled open the door for her. "After you, my lady," he said with a smile.

The sigh was evidence enough that she'd asked one too many times. Liv cringed a little, biting her lip as she lingered on the sidewalk, watching the two men put her bags away. "Sorry," she apologised for her overzealous concerns. "I'm just ... hyper-aware of being a problem. Hang-up from childhood." Letting out another hefty sigh, she made a point of lowering her shoulders from their tense hunch, her smile deepening at the playful display of gentlemanly manners. "Why, thank you, kind sir." Dropping a curtsey that almost could have been graceful in a longer skirt, Liv slid onto the backseat, wriggling over to make room for Johnny. "No bike today?"
[size=9:184a99ac32][color=darkblue:184a99ac32][i:184a99ac32][b:184a99ac32]I want you to be everything that's you, deep at the center of your being.[/b:184a99ac32][/i:184a99ac32][/color:184a99ac32][/size:184a99ac32]

Olivia Storm

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Re: Home
« Reply #1 on: April 18, 2012, 09:25:31 AM »
He grinned back as she curtseyed and offered a courtly bow in return, sliding in beside her and pulling the door closed. The cabby already knew where to go and wasted no time in pulling away from the hospital once his two passengers were settled. "No, Lucy said you had luggage, and I don't think you should be riding yet." He glanced over at her and smiled again, reaching over to brush his fingers against her cheek. "You're not a problem, Liv. You're never a problem."

"Oh, I was a few years back," she nodded with a wry little smile, her head tilting to press her cheek into his touch unconsciously. Her hand rose to curl her fingers around his. "Thank you for this, Johnny. Really, it means a lot to have somewhere to go after ..." She hesitated, but managed to say it. "After the fire."

His smile turned a little melancholy, knowing the fire must have terrified her and probably still did. "Liv..." he started, unsure how to put into words what was worrying his mind. "I know it must have scared you... the fire, I mean.  And... I don't want to scare you." Unlike her sister, she had only seen him half in flames, and he was worried what she'd think the first time she saw him completely engulfed. It was bound to happen sooner or later.

She shook her head quickly. "No, it's ... it's not the fire, as such," she promised him, her voice fierce with the need to make him understand as her hands reached to grip his. Her cheeks flushed, ashamed of what was truly bothering her so much. "It sounds so stupid to say it out loud, though." She sighed heavily, looking down at her hands in his. "You don't scare me, Johnny, even knowing what you can do. I'm just ... I'm hurting because my home doesn't exist anymore."

He watched her closely, needing to know what she was thinking and feeling. "I'd never hurt you, Liv," he told her in an uncharacteristically gentle voice, taking her hands in his, trying to reassure her as much as he could. He smiled a little in understanding and let go of her hand to tilt her chin up to face him. "Your home is with me now. My home is your home." He felt a small pang of homesickness for the familiarity of New York, but pushed it aside for the moment to focus on her.

He needed to know why this was hitting her so hard, to at least have the information even if he didn't understand. Awkwardly, Liv twisted, catching his hand once again to touch her lips to his palm for a moment. "I know that apartment wasn't much," she said quietly, staring at his hands intently. "But ... it was the first real home I've ever had. Somewhere that was mine and not paid for by the state or a room given to me in a house for a few months at a time."

"It's really hard to explain," she added, laughing almost without mirth. "We never knew our parents, Johnny. We were fostered until we were sixteen, and then it was up to us to make do with benefits from the state." She shook her head, looking up at him trustingly. "Home is so much more than just a place to live."

His brows ticked upwards as he listened to her explain, furrowing then as he tried to understand. She and Lucy were orphans? He opened his mouth to speak, but only one word came out. "What?" He shook his head, as if trying to shake some sense into himself. "Wait... You and Lucy..." He turned away, looking as if he was trying to sort it all out in his head. After a moment, he looked back, still looking a little puzzled. "What happened to them?"

She shrugged, shaking her head once again. "I don't know. I went looking, when I was old enough; got permission to look at the records and everything. We were left on the doorstep of a small church; we couldn't have been more than a couple of days old. No note, no explanation, no sign of parents. Just us, and no one wanted to adopt twins." A faint smile touched her lips as she looked up at him. "I'm sorry, it's a big thing to just drop on you."

He just stared at her for a moment, speechless, flashing back to childhood memories of his own which he hadn't shared, blinking out of his thoughts finally and back to the present. "Maybe... maybe it wasn't so much that they didn't want you. Maybe your mom was a teenager or something. Maybe she thought you'd be better off with someone else." He sighed, knowing he wasn't helping. "Sorry, I... For what it's worth, I want you." He leaned close to press a kiss against her lips to underscore his words.

He hadn't given her a chance to respond, caught up in the kiss so fervently pressed to her lips. Yet for once, she didn't get carried away, gently drawing back as her fingers caressed his cheek. "I didn't tell you to make a bid for sympathy or anything like that," she told him quietly. "I just wanted you to know. To understand why I'm grieving for a tiny apartment in a rough district." There was a pause before she added, "Why I always need to be sure I'm not in the way or a burden on you. I couldn't bear it if you resented me for anything at all, Johnny, I really couldn't."

"I understand, Liv," he assured her quietly, his fingers gently brushing against her cheek. More than you could know, he thought to himself, with another pang of homesickness. "You're not a burden, and I could never resent you." His head dipped forward to kiss her again, but he hesitated a moment, as if to be sure she wanted this. It wasn't so much sympathy or pity he was feeling, so much as a connection between them that neither of them had or could have ever realized existed.

Gazing into the blue eyes that lit on her face, Liv could see that he did understand, more than anyone else she had ever told. Briefly, she wondered just how he could be so certain of his understanding, knowing she would never ask him outright. "Thank you," she whispered tenderly to him, letting her breath caress his lips. "For what it's worth, I feel more at home with you than I have with anyone." The kiss offered she took, rising to meet his lips with hers in a gentle confirmation of her own words as much as his.
[size=9:184a99ac32][color=darkblue:184a99ac32][i:184a99ac32][b:184a99ac32]I want you to be everything that's you, deep at the center of your being.[/b:184a99ac32][/i:184a99ac32][/color:184a99ac32][/size:184a99ac32]

Olivia Storm

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Re: Home
« Reply #2 on: April 18, 2012, 09:29:18 AM »
He did understand, at least a little. He was an orphan, as well, after all, but she didn't know that. She didn't really know anything about him, but he wasn't sure it mattered. He understood something about her now, and the pieces of the puzzle were starting to slide into place. Lucy was the elder sister. Lucy had stepped up to take care of Liv, the way Sue had for him. Lucy had always been there for Liv, when no one else had. That he understood, too. But none of this was said aloud, only in his head, his kiss answering her better than words. His heart went out to her as he realized how not so very different they were, after all.

A bump in the road threw her almost into his lap, the kiss breaking to the sound of her sudden giggles. The release of the tension that had hung over them during that interchange dissipated from her, one hand pushing her glasses high once again, the other dropping to tug the hem of her skirt down from its insinuating creep up her thigh.

He smiled when she broke into giggles, finding her adorable once again. He caught her as she was jostled by the cab ride before she landed in his lap, his gaze darting briefly to the tug at her hem, a small smirk on his lips. "This is going to be interesting," he remarked, casually, blue eyes shining.

She'd missed the flicker of his gaze to her hand, meeting his shining eyes with the softness of her own darker gaze in vague bemusement. "How so?" Liv asked curiously, resisting the urge to lay her legs over his knees by the merest fraction of her will power. She didn't think the back of a cab was the wisest place to be tempting Fate.

"Oh, just... you and me, living all alone in an apartment without our older siblings to watch over us or tell us what to do." He smirked at her. "We can stay up as long as we want, sleep as long as we want, eat crackers in bed if we want... among other things." He waggled his brows at her teasing. "Turn the TV or the stereo up as loud as we want. Do whatever we want."

"Oh, yes," Liv drawled with comical sarcasm. "I'm sure you're going to turn me into a real party animal. Just think, you might even be able to get me to drink more than one glass of wine a night!" Her exaggerated and feigned excitement still managed to light up her eyes as she grinned at him, glancing through the window for a moment at the buildings they were passing. "Where do you live, anyway?"

His smile at her feigned excitement faded a little as they got closer to where he lived. "It's not far," he replied, their surroundings turning to what looked like public housing. Clean, comfortable, and safe, but temporary at best. "It's not exactly the Ritz, Liv. I'm an idiot. I didn't bring any money with me, and... I just figured income and housing would be covered."

Her smile gentled in the face of his suddenly awkward explanations, her hand rising to lay the pad of her thumb gently against his lips to still the rising apologies. "Johnny, I've lived in some pretty disgusting places," she assured him. "I promise you, it'll be wonderful." One shoulder rose and fell with quiet confidence. "It has something the Ritz doesn't."

The one thing they didn't have in common was that he'd never really been homeless, not until he'd come here. Even without parents, there had always been someone who'd take him in and take care of him, but in a way, he was enjoying being on his own for a change, without any rules or anyone telling him what to do. He smiled at her reassurance, kissing the thumb that she laid against his lips and reaching to take her hand in his. "Yeah, it has you."

"I beg to differ," she giggled back to him, forestalled in her assurances by his stealing of her line. "It has you." The tip of her nose brushed his lightly as she smiled to him, stroking her fingertips over his palm. "I hope the bed is big enough for us both," she added, a touch of crimson on her cheeks before she continued, "I'd hate to have to subject you to my bony knees and elbows crushed up close again."

He brushed his nose against hers, transferring heat to her with just that slight touch. "It's bigger than the hospital bed," he remarked, more than a little surprised neither of them fallen out of that narrow bed the night he'd stayed, like he had when he'd slept with Lucy; but then, as he'd already learned, in most ways Liv was nothing like Lucy. He chuckled at her warning, blue eyes bright. "I know, it's going to be so hard sharing a bed with you." The cab pulled up outside an old brick tenement building, which looked like it had seen better days but was in the process of being renovated.

Her eyes turned to look up at the tenement as they pulled to a halt, ostensibly abandoning their conversation in favor of taking a good look at the building. Until it became clear that she was leaning ever closer to Johnny, waiting until her lips brushed against his ear before asking in an experimentally husky moan of a voice, "How hard?"

He looked over at the building with a frown. The Baxter Building it wasn't, but it was home for now. He turned back to her, a small smirk on his face at her question. "That depends on what we're talking about." And with that said, he pushed open the door and climbed out, going around to the other side to get her door, while the cabby opened the trunk and pulled out her luggage.
[size=9:184a99ac32][color=darkblue:184a99ac32][i:184a99ac32][b:184a99ac32]I want you to be everything that's you, deep at the center of your being.[/b:184a99ac32][/i:184a99ac32][/color:184a99ac32][/size:184a99ac32]

Olivia Storm

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Re: Home
« Reply #3 on: April 18, 2012, 09:33:10 AM »
Hmm, so she'd gotten a smirk but little else. Liv filed that away curiously, wondering why sometimes Johnny couldn't keep his hands to himself and sometimes he could completely ignore any and all attempts to seduce him. Not that she was particularly good at seducing anyone, but he was the first to get the full force of her curious attentions in that area at all. As her door opened under his hand, she slid from the car, bouncing up to kiss his chin quickly before scurrying around the back of the cab in the hope of getting to at least one of her bags before he did.

Oh, she had an effect on him, all right, probably more than she realized, and it was partly why Johnny got out of the cab when he did, but there was distraction, too. Worries on his mind, no matter how much he tried to push them aside. He understood what she told him and knew she was grateful for a roof over her head, but he worried she'd think it was a dump.  

"Well, this is it," he announced. It reminded him a little of New York, but not the area he was used to living in. "Home, sweet home," he told himself quietly, mixed feelings about the place.

"It's a lovely building," Liv answered Johnny's announcement with a genuine smile. She couldn't see anything about the place that deserved his rueful condemnation, but then, she didn't know the style he was accustomed to living in. She looked back at him from the sidewalk, hefting the larger (and heavier) of the two suitcases in one hand. "Am I allowed to see inside, or do I have to pay a toll to cross the threshold?" she teased lightly, her free hand rising to beckon him with a crooking finger.

He blinked out of his thoughts and back at her, seeing her with the heavier of the two suitcases and beckoning him toward her. He hurried over and took it from her. "I'll get those." Meanwhile the cabby was impatiently waiting to get paid. Johnny dug some coins from a pocket in his jacket and handed them to the driver, who grumbled a little at not getting a tip before leaving. "Of course, you get to see inside, silly." He hefted one suitcase in each hand and with a nod of his head and an almost shy smile, started toward the stairs. "Welcome home, Liv."

Home. Such a simple word, but it meant so much to Olivia to hear Johnny say it in this context. It almost seemed as though he was expecting her to stay forever, not just until she found a new place, and she couldn't help but like that prospect far better than the idea of living alone again. Pouting a little as he took her case from her, nonetheless she smiled, gesturing toward the building. "After you. Unless you'd like me to frighten your neighbors by trying to force entry to every apartment on the way to yours."

He chuckled at her remark. "Keys are in my pocket," he told her, halting and waiting for her to fish the keys from his jeans, forgetting she might be a bit too shy to fish around in a pocket that was located so close to such a private area. As for himself, he thought nothing of it.

True to form, she blushed, but her smile was more laughing than embarrassed as she turned to face him. "Which pocket would that be?" she asked as nonchalantly as she could, stepping close as her head tipped back, dark hair tumbling backward from her shoulders in the process.

He smirked, partly at her blush, partly at the opportunity to tease her. "I don't know. You'll have to guess." Of course, he knew his keys were in his right hand pocket because he was right-handed, but it amused him to make her try and find them. "It's one or the other. You have a 50-50 chance." He could have easily put the luggage down and tugged them out himself, but what fun was that?

The look in her eyes was promising payback for this teasing if she ever worked out how. But Liv was infinitely more comfortable with Johnny now than she had been for weeks, and that was shown in the way she stepped up close to him, laying her hands on his hips. "You're enjoying this far too much, you know," she said in a surprisingly conversational tone as her right hand inched into his left-hand pocket, rummaging around for quite a bit longer than was strictly necessary to find out whether the keys were there or not.

He grinned down at her, the light in his blue eyes displaying obvious amusement. "I know," he admitted. "Can you blame me?" Not in that pocket! She could rummage all she wanted in the left hand pocket, all she was going to find was pocket lint and a very warm Johnny beneath the denim. His biceps bulged slightly as he stood there holding her luggage, but he showed no signs of strain or weariness.

A soft chuckle escaped her lips, her body leaning forward to press her forehead against his chest as her right hand retreated to curl over his hip once again. "Some people might call this taking advantage of a situation," she said laughingly, tipping her head back once again as her left hand slid into his right pocket.

He stood very still as she rummaged around in his jeans, smiling down at her from his height of nearly six feet. "You can take advantage of me all you want, Liv. I don't mind." And sure enough, his keys were in his right-hand pocket, warmed a little from the heat that radiated off his body. He tilted his head to watch her as she fumbled around for his keys, smirking a little. "A little more to the left, I think."

"For once it wasn't me I was talking about," she laughed softly. There was a moment of hesitation, and she actually followed the smirking instruction. Her thumb hooked into the keyring, but her fingers ... well, they went on a little journey into the left corner of his right pocket with a daring little ripple before she retreated, her smile turning to a full grin as she stepped back. She jangled his keys in front of his face. "So which apartment is it, then?"
[size=9:184a99ac32][color=darkblue:184a99ac32][i:184a99ac32][b:184a99ac32]I want you to be everything that's you, deep at the center of your being.[/b:184a99ac32][/i:184a99ac32][/color:184a99ac32][/size:184a99ac32]

Olivia Storm

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Re: Home
« Reply #4 on: April 18, 2012, 09:36:35 AM »
He chuckled a little when she dared to tease him, the little ripple of her finger enticing and stirring the desire he was barely keeping in check. "I hope you don't mind the stairs. I'm on the fourth floor."

He had chosen that apartment for a reason - he had easy access to the roof, which he could use as a jumping off point, if he was in a hurry. And he liked to sit up there sometimes and just watch the world go by. At only four stories, it wasn't nearly as high as the Baxter Building, but at least it wasn't the ground floor.

Liv laughed again, turning to make her way into the building. It was a strange feeling, to know that she was willingly walking into a situation where she would be completely and utterly alone with a man she desperately liked; it was the sort of thing Lucy had always said she would never do, even at gunpoint. But then, Lucy liked to tease Liv about her lack of experience all the time. For once, Liv wasn't shy of walking into the lion's den. "Are you absolutely sure I can't carry one of those?" she asked as they approached the stairs, pointing to the suitcases he was hefting.

"Absolutely," he repeated. "You just worry about getting the door." He followed her to the stairs and up them, waiting for her to get the door before following her inside. Let no one say Johnny Storm was not a gentleman when he wanted to be! He wasn't about to let her struggle with her luggage when she'd just been released from a hospital stay. Besides, trailing behind, he got a good look at her assets, so he may have had an ulterior motive.

It was just as well she hadn't realised about the view he had up her skirt as the material swayed around her thighs, or Johnny would probably have been treated to the sight of her trying to walk up stairs without opening her legs at all. "You still haven't told me which door I'm supposed to be opening, Johnny," she giggled over her shoulder to him, shaking her head at his evasiveness.

"Take a right at the top of the stairs. It's 4C," he replied, shuffling up the stairs behind her, unable to stop himself from trying to take a peek up her skirt, even if he wanted to. It was just too tempting. "I've never understood why women need so many clothes." It was the only complaint he made about her bags.

Liv flushed faintly. If she'd done the shopping, there wouldn't have been so many clothes in those bags, but she'd hadn't been released until after her sister had raided her bank account. "Well, it's not all clothes, Johnny," she smiled a little shyly. "Everything I need should be in those bags. If it isn't, I have a bone to pick with Lucy." She flashed him a warm smile as her feet found the top of the stairs, turning right as he had directed her.

He thought about that a minute, trying to remember what his sister's closet looked like and what other items Liv might be referring to. From what he'd noticed, women always seemed to have more belongings than men, but he wasn't sure why, other than vanity.

"Like what?" he asked after a moment. He had come to Rhydin with nothing but the clothes on his back, literally, leaving everything else back home in New York. There were a few things he was missing, mostly personal items that couldn't be replaced, and he suddenly wondered if the twins had lost anything irreplaceable in the fire.

"Contacts, hair brush, toiletries, diary ..." Liv rattled off the list without thinking, coming to a halt in front of 4C. The keyring jangled as she unlocked the door, looking back at him a little shyly, silently asking permission to actually open the door and step inside. "Just basic little things that you don't think twice about."

And some other things not so little that she'd never have again; pictures from her childhood of friends and the last foster family they had been placed with. It would take a while, but the loss of those wasn't going to sting for very long.

"You keep a diary?" he asked, the mention of which piqued his curiosity. He shifted his hold on the luggage, which was just starting to make his arms ache. "Go ahead. Mi casa su casa and all that." He smiled reassuringly to her, hoping she wouldn't find the place to be a complete dump. To his credit, the place was spic and span, but a bit stark and empty looking without much adornment. The walls were washed white, the entire place looking very neutral, without much character.

"Well, I did, for a while," she admitted, pushing open the door to step inside, holding it open for him. "I might start again, but I usually just doodle in it when I'm on the phone." Her eyes swept over the space around her, seeing nothing out of the ordinary and certainly nothing to make her want to run screaming. It was just another basic apartment, like countless others she had lived in; clean, tidy, and utterly faceless.

He frowned a little as he followed her inside, saddened by the realization that she'd lost so much in the fire, so many things that had personal meaning just gone, and he wished he'd had the presence of mind to ask her what needed saving before he swept her away. But instead of saying that, he simply followed her inside, setting her bags down just inside the door and turning to push the door shut behind him. "I've never kept a diary. Seems more of a girl thing."

"It's not really a girl thing," she laughed, waiting until he'd shut the door before she turned back, stepping up close to slide his keys back into his pocket with an almost cheeky smile. "It's a habit anyone can get into, if they really want to."

He turned back to find her standing in front of him, sliding her hand back into his pocket to replace the keys. Or maybe she just wanted an excuse to get into his jeans. He shrugged his shoulders, his mood having turned a little sullen. "What would I write about?"

"Anything that comes to mind." Realising she'd misread his mood, she retreated, her smile fading as she turned to look around a little more. "What you've been doing, what you think about, the people you love or like or hate. I used to write when I needed to think about things, get them straight in my head."
[size=9:184a99ac32][color=darkblue:184a99ac32][i:184a99ac32][b:184a99ac32]I want you to be everything that's you, deep at the center of your being.[/b:184a99ac32][/i:184a99ac32][/color:184a99ac32][/size:184a99ac32]

Olivia Storm

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Re: Home
« Reply #5 on: April 18, 2012, 09:39:13 AM »
"What for?" he asked, not really understanding the purpose behind it. "I already know what I think, so why should I write it down?" He picked up the luggage, following her farther inside, intending to take her things to the bedroom. "Besides, what if I died or something and someone found it? I don't want everyone knowing everything about me."

She paused in the main room, turning to look at him with a slightly bemused smile. "That is a very strange way of looking at it," she said thoughtfully. "It never occurred to me that anyone would want to read my diary, even if I was dead." She stilled for a moment, biting her lip. "Johnny ... did I do something wrong? Your mood changed really quickly."

It was a men are from Mars, women are from Venus kind of thing. He'd actually just about kill to read her diary, but he didn't want her anywhere near his. Not that he had one because he didn't. "I'm fine, Liv." Clearly, he was not, but he wasn't talking either. "Bedroom's down here." He started down a short hallway from which there was a bedroom on one side and a bathroom on the other.

So this must have been what Lucy had meant when she'd said that not even Johnny would be easy to be around all the time. Liv bit harder into her lower lip as he moved away, falling into step behind him in silence. She didn't know what to say, only knowing that when Lucy was in a bad mood it was best not to speak at all.

It wasn't her fault his mood had changed. He was just feeling guilty that he hadn't been able to save her possessions, not realizing he'd saved the most important thing - her life. He set her bags down on the floor just inside the bedroom, which was as starkly decorated as the rest of the apartment. It was small, but warm and clean and cozy. He turned to face her again. "The bathroom's there," he indicated the tiny room across the hall with a hand. "Kitchen's off the living room."

He shoved his hands into his jeans pockets, feeling suddenly a little awkward now that it was just the two of them there all alone, longing for the closeness he'd felt in the hospital bed with her just the other night.

She nodded, tucking her hair back behind her ear as her gaze turned in each direction he indicated. It wasn't only him who was feeling awkward; the familiar, hated shyness had flared into life once again, painting her face rosy pink as she sank her teeth deeper into her lower lip. She cleared her throat quietly, looking down at her feet as her hands clasped behind her back, missing the easiness she'd felt in his company when they'd been at the hospital. Now they were completely alone, Liv was completely at a loss; she had no idea what to say, or what to do, and it just made the silence heavier.

"I haven't gone shopping in a few days, but I'm sure I can find something around here to cook up if you're hungry," he said, trying to fill the awkward silence. He wasn't sure what had changed when they'd stepped through the door. She was still the same Liv and he was still the same Johnny. Now that she was actually there, he wasn't quite sure what to do next. "Or if you... wanna take a shower." He wondered if he should just make love to her and be done with it, end this ridiculous awkwardness.

Grateful that he'd given her something to respond to, Liv's eyes lifted to his, still the same soft intimacy hidden behind her lenses as her lips curved in a relieved smile. "You're right, I should shower," she admitted quietly, looking down at herself briefly. "I probably smell awful." She cleared her throat again, one hand rising to rub at the back of her neck. "I'm a good cook," she added softly. "I mean, I ... I could cook something, if you'd like?"

"I can cook when I have to." He smiled faintly. "It kind of comes naturally." He was more than likely not referring to his actually cooking skills, but his unnatural abilities involving fire. "I think there's some spaghetti in the cupboard," he added helpfully. He hadn't been spending much time there lately and wasn't really sure how well the kitchen was stocked. "Make yourself at home, Liv. I want you to be comfortable here."

"I will be." It was a startlingly confident statement given how very awkward it felt between them at that moment. Liv drew in a slow breath, letting it out in a shuddering exhale, her eyes closing for those few seconds. "This is really silly," she heard herself say, slipping her glasses from her nose to rub her eyes gently. "I wasn't half this shy in the hospital, and I wasn't even properly dressed!"

"Maybe we should just have sex and be done with it," he suggested with a small smile, only half serious. He really did want to go slow and wait until she was ready, but hey, he was game if she was.

It worked. Glasses dangling from her fingers, Liv looked up at him in surprise, her blush deepening even as she burst into giggles. "Oh, Johnny," she laughed, stepping closer to slide her hand up against his neck. "Come here." Rising onto her toes, she pulled to bring him down to her, lips touching his with gentle affection.
[size=9:184a99ac32][color=darkblue:184a99ac32][i:184a99ac32][b:184a99ac32]I want you to be everything that's you, deep at the center of your being.[/b:184a99ac32][/i:184a99ac32][/color:184a99ac32][/size:184a99ac32]

Olivia Storm

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« Reply #6 on: April 18, 2012, 09:45:32 AM »
He wasn't sure what had come over him, why he was feeling suddenly so awkward and shy when there wasn't a bashful bone in his body. Was this how one felt when they really cared for someone and it wasn't just all about sex? He found his heart was beating a little bit faster when she touched him, and his stomach was twisting into nervous knots. She was just a girl. What the hell was the matter with him? He tipped his head forward to meet her lips, kissing her with equal affection.

One kiss was just the tip of the iceberg, and with no risk of anyone interrupting them, Liv seemed to embrace their privacy whole-heartedly. That soft first touch of lips became something deeper, harder, her fingers curling tighter around the arm of her spectacles as her arms rose to wrap around his neck. A faint murmur of sound, girlish and filled with nervous pleasure, passed from her to him as she pressed close, forgetting innocence and awkwardness and wary inexperience in the face of his taste and scent, and the feel of him in her arms once more.

Letting her lead the way, following her cues, his arms circled around her waist as she clung to his neck, his kiss anything but awkward. There was experience in that kiss, the promise of so much more, but there was also a certain innocence, a longing in his heart for something he'd never had before. His lips were warm, warmer than normal, his heat radiating through him and into her, as always. He was feeling a strange mix of excitement and nervousness, afraid he'd disappoint her, longing to please her. Her murmur of sound filled him with desire, her body soft and warm against his, soft curves against hard angles, perfectly fitting together like two lost pieces of a jigsaw puzzle.

She loved his heat, the sinful rise of his temperature whenever they got this close something incredible to feel, even through layers of cloth. Liv couldn't help wondering how much more she would thrill to him when it was her skin against his. He could make her breathless with a single look; this kiss had her gasping for breath within moments, her lips breaking from his only to brush softer kisses to his mouth even as she grinned lovingly. Her fingers combed through his hair as she nuzzled to him. "I should ... I should shower," she whispered reluctantly against his lips. "Haven't been properly clean in days."

His eyes had somehow drifted closed while he savored the taste of her lips against his, sighing softly when she broke off the kiss. He opened his eyes to find her there, filling his field of vision - her soft brown eyes and kissable lips. His fingers twitched against her waist, wanting to slowly unwrap her, layer by layer. Slowly, she was overwriting his memories of her sister, etching herself in his head and his heart. He heard what she told him, but he made no move to part from her, lost in the spell that was Olivia Broderick.

What had she said? She couldn't remember, wrapped up in him more than she could ever have imagined was possible. It wasn't just lust (though admittedly that was a major player), it was an overriding need to know him, to let him know her; to strip away every last barrier between them and just drown in the sense of affection, warmth ... love. The hand not holding tightly to her glasses slid down his chest as her lips touched his once again, that soft sound repeated in a thrumming moan into his mouth as she moulded herself closer, unable to even conceive of letting go. Not now ... not ever.

How could he possibly resist such a reaction from her? Sensing her desire, his own desire matching hers, it wasn't just a physical reaction, but something more, something deeper - a desire to connect with her in every sense of the word. "Liv..." he muttered breathlessly. He knew if he didn't pull himself away from her now, if he didn't get his own desires under control, her virtue wasn't going to last much longer. He returned her kiss, pulling her tightly against him, even as he knew he should do just the opposite. "I want you," he murmured against her lips, heart pounding in his chest, desire cresting.

Instinct is a marvellous thing. Regardless of innocence, or restraint, or the wish to go slow, Liv didn't want to step back. She didn't want Johnny to let her go. "Oh god, yes," was whispered in a tone she'd never heard from her own voice before - husky, tender, filled with longing. "I don't want to wait, Johnny, please." Shyness counted for nothing now; she needed to take this next step with him before she went crazy with not knowing.

He was close to giving in, so close and yet so far, throwing all of his self-restraint to the wind. She wanted him and he wanted her. They were both adults. What was he waiting for? He was just about to kiss her again, just about to give in, just about to claim her as his, when the communicator in his pocket went off with a loud obnoxious buzzing sound and he scowled in annoyance. "Damn it!"

Being a superhero meant being on call 24/7. He'd told her as much, but why did it never fail to interfere with his love life?

So close. Liv felt and heard whatever it was buzz between them and knew just from his reaction that it wasn't something he could ignore. Her sigh was laced with a disappointed moan as she sagged, lowering back to her heels, Despite her reluctance, she forced herself to open her eyes, to push away from that burning need as she put her glasses back onto her nose. "Time to go?"
[size=9:184a99ac32][color=darkblue:184a99ac32][i:184a99ac32][b:184a99ac32]I want you to be everything that's you, deep at the center of your being.[/b:184a99ac32][/i:184a99ac32][/color:184a99ac32][/size:184a99ac32]

Olivia Storm

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« Reply #7 on: April 18, 2012, 09:52:40 AM »
He frowned down at her, more than likely more disappointed and far more frustrated than she was. "Sorry." He brushed an all too quick kiss against her lips and untangled himself from her to move to his closet and take down the uniform that hung there.

Her smile was wry - understanding but disappointed at the same time. "Don't be," she murmured gently, stepping back as he pulled a suit from the closet. "You're not wearing it?" She should have realised, of course, but she hadn't really been in any state to pay close attention to what was underneath his clothing.

"It's probably a false alarm. It usually is." He was hoping. If it was nothing, he'd be back soon, but if it was something, he wasn't sure. He didn't want to scare her by telling her how dangerous this job of his could be, how many close calls he'd had in his twenty-five years. Metahuman or not, he wasn't indestructible. "No, I..." He frowned a little as he pulled the uniform from a hanger. "I wanted to try and be a little normal for a change. Stupid, I guess." Stupid as he'd never be normal. He didn't even want to be normal, but there were moments like these when he wished he could be a little more normal.

But clearly not as stupid as he'd thought, if the sweetly moved expression on her face was anything to go by. She moved to him, stroking her hand against his cheek, lifting on her toes to kiss the other cheek. "I don't want normal," she told him softly. "I want you. Normal's overrated, anyway." A quick wink flickered in his direction, and she turned away, opening up one of the suitcases in search of shampoo and soap. Time to test that cold shower theory.

He lowered the uniform as she stepped close, searching her eyes as she told him what she wanted, that she didn't want normal. But she didn't know that much about him yet, and he worried she'd change her mind. In the end, they always did, but maybe things would be different this time. He had to hope so; otherwise, what was the point? He didn't have time to explain where he was going, what he was doing, when he'd be back. His heart ached with hope that she wouldn't be like all the others, that she would be different.

"I gotta go," he told her sadly. He didn't know what he'd been called for. It could be nothing, but it could be something. If they needed him, he couldn't shirk his duty. He tossed the uniform on the bed, not bothering to hide from her, tugging his t-shirt up his chest, over his head and down his arms, revealing the sculpted muscles that were usually hidden beneath that suit.

Thankfully, she had seen him bare-chested before, but never in a situation where she knew he was hers to touch. The flush returned to her cheeks as her heated gaze stroked over the lean definition of his naked torso, her eyes lit up with desire all over again. "Wow ..." Clearing her throat yet again, she laughed softly, lifting the bottles of shampoo and conditioner to her face to cool her cheeks. "I'll be here, when you get back." It seemed important to say it aloud, though it was blatantly obvious. She just wanted him to hear her say it.

He seemed oblivious to the effect taking his shirt off might have on her, not thinking too much about it, more concerned about getting dressed and getting where he was needed without too much delay. Someone's life might be at risk. He did arch a brow when he heard her mutter a "wow" and clear her throat, glancing over at her. If he had more time, he'd do a proper striptease, but it would have to wait until later. He smirked a little to himself and turned his back on her to get his jeans off, modest enough to leave his boxers on, though they'd burn up as soon as he turned to flame. "You better be," he warned, tossing his discarded jeans and tshirt on the bed.

"Hunt me down and punish me if I'm not, hmm?" She couldn't help offering that tease, the awkwardness between them gone once more despite the fact that Johnny, too, would be gone in a matter of minutes. "How is that supposed to encourage me to stay?" A quiet giggle followed her from the bedroom to the bathroom, both doors left open as she set the soaps down, looking back at him.

He turned to follow her with his eyes, standing there in just his boxers, looking at her with an expression that seemed to say he wished he didn't have to go. Before now, it hadn't really mattered. His life had been his own and what happened to him didn't really matter, but things had changed. He didn't expect her to wait up for him, and yet, he secretly wished she would. "I don't know when I'll be back," he admitted a little sadly, turning away again to step into the suit, which felt familiar and fit like a second skin.

"So?" He seemed to have forgotten that she'd lived with her sister, and that her sister was a doctor, often on call. Liv was more used to waiting up than Johnny might like to think. She leaned in the bathroom doorway, watching as he stepped into his suit, resting her temple against the cool wood of the frame. "I'll be here, Johnny," she promised softly. "Who knows, there might even be a meal waiting for you with me." Despite the disappointment at having her desire curtailed so abruptly, she was pushing it aside. It would happen, sooner or later.

He zipped the suit closed and turned to face her again, looking more like Johnny Storm the superhero than Johnny Storm the man. There was so much he wanted to tell her that just wouldn't find its way out of his head to his mouth, and now there was no time.  "Liv... It means a lot to me that you're here. I want you to know that." Just in case. "If... if anything..." He broke off, not wanting to scare her, despite how much he wanted her to know what she meant to him. "I'll be back as soon as I can."

It hadn't occurred to her until those words came out of his mouth that there was any danger of his not coming back. She, like so many people, habitually over-estimated just how super a superhero could be, and Johnny moreso. He'd saved her from a burning building; what could possibly endanger his life? Fear flared for just a moment before she swallowed it down, producing a smile that was more reassuring than worried. "I won't forgive you if you don't come back," she told him warmly, "Be careful, if you can."

He looked at her longingly for a moment. Then he quickly crossed the small space that separated them, an arm going possessively around her waist to pull her close as he stole one final, breathless kiss before he had to go.

She gasped, caught up against him in a kiss that undid all the work she'd done in suppressing that twisting, frantic need to touch and taste him, clinging close for a brief moment before pushing away. "Go on, go," she told him, stepping back before her selfish desire could get in the way of his selfless vocation.

He didn't want to leave her, but he didn't have a choice, too dedicated to shirk his duty when he was needed. "I'll be back," he promised again, pulling reluctantly away from her and stepping back into the bedroom, instead of going to the door. He threw open a window and stepped out onto the fire escape. It was faster this way.

"I love you, Liv! I'll be back soon!" He lifted his eyes skyward and switched the flame on with his familiar cry of, "Flame on!" more out of habit than necessity. He threw an arm out and kicked off the fire escape, a fiery figure soaring into the sky.

[size=9]((Saved by the buzz? :grin: Thanks to Johnny!))[/size]
[size=9:184a99ac32][color=darkblue:184a99ac32][i:184a99ac32][b:184a99ac32]I want you to be everything that's you, deep at the center of your being.[/b:184a99ac32][/i:184a99ac32][/color:184a99ac32][/size:184a99ac32]