More Than I Should | Clare
- Clare: was feeling more in the vicinity of her usual comfort zone as the match went on, perfectly content being in Eli's company despite the difficulty they'd conquered to get to better terms. It was a recent occurrence, but it felt every bit as natural as it was while the two were dating, and deep down, she forget that they weren't, every so often. Those days didn't bother her; they both wanted that to be their reality again, stated so in sobriety and knew that someday soon it would be again, but it was the crushing reminder that today was never that day that defeated Clare most of all. Snapped from her reverie by Eli's claim, her eyes flicked to the board, instantly skeptical. "You do not-," she trailed, instantly spotting the validity of his words plain as day on the board between them. "But how did you-, I'm tired of this game," she huffed softly, proving her own poor sportsmanship as she slid the plastic nub aside, freeing all the tokens back to her bed and effectively clearing the board before the boy could claim his victory. "There. Now you don't 'got me' at all," she grinned smugly, the action undeserved as she began to gather the cheated game pieces back into the box. "So now what?" She breathed, leaning back against her fluffed mound on upright pillows at the head of her bed. "I'm not sure I'm up for going anywhere unless you really want to, but we can watch a movie or read or something," she shrugged. Quickly her face conjured up a shy smile, her eyes darting towards the comforter beneath them. "I'm not very good at this sneaky teen thing, sorry. I probably should have planned something, but I figured I'd have been too nervous going behind my mom's back to follow through. But like I said, whatever you want, I'm at your mercy," she giggled, folding her hands over her stomach in wait of an answer.
- Eli: folded his arms, smugly grinning at his play. He laughed as she took the game apart, moving to sit up farther onto the bed. "Come on Edwards, you've gotta be a sport than that the next time we play something. Or else we'll never finish the game." he teased at her child-like reaction to losing. It was cute to see her like that, oddly enough. It reminded him of how at ease things used to be when they would hang out together. He winning over her and she pouting, or even her winning over him and he would become driven to one up her for some reason but if he couldn't, he'd pout just the same. He shrugged at her question, moving his legs to sit Indian style comfortably. "No, I'd rather stay in the house.. I mean, it is why we're here anyways. To stay here and relax," he reminded. "We can do all that, we have all the time in the world. But I'd say we keep the reading to a minimum. I know it's somewhat our thing, but for right now, that's what school is for." His eyes followed her lips as she spoke shyly, a little smile playing against his. "If it makes you feel better, I'm not too good at it either. It's been a while." he admitted, half lying, just to make her feel better. "At my mercy? Hmm, you sure you don't wanna rephrase that?" he teased, "Joking, joking," he continued with a sly grin, crawling off the bed and standing at the end of it. "I say, we grab a movie, a few blankets, pop some popcorn, turn the lights down and have a movie marathon for a while.. What do you say?"
I guess so, but things will have changed in a year, at least that’s why they wouldn’t accept the same offer next year. I’ll figure something out though, I’m sure.
And you will, I’m positive.
Since when did I become the optimist of my group of friends? Geez, Alli. Have a little faith that they will if you show them you’re best the next time. I’m sure you’ll figure something out though, so yeah.
Thank you, I’ll need all the encouragement I can get.
Maybe not just like it, but hopefully something similar. It’s still my dream school, I just.. might have to put forward the money for it, ha. Thank you though, Eli. I appreciate that.
Very true, though I’m sure you’ve got a spectacular future ahead. You’ll make it far.
I doubt that with what they know of you, but eh, what do I know. We’ll just have to wait and see. You’re welcome, Alli. Anytime.
Oh thank you, ha. One can only hope. NYU accepted me with no hesitation, so I can only hope to make them proud.
More Than I Should | Clare
- Clare: duly noted the brief, but all too present moment of purposeful silence looming between the two youngsters as the elder half cleaned the other's face. On other terms, better ones that the pair had been on not too long ago, the gesture wouldn't have garnered another moment of thought, something so common as a moment of innocent enough physical contact. Doing her best to shirk the potentially sentimental moment, Clare cleared her throat, nodding as she led their exit upstairs and just as soon into the closet. "Of course not," she obliged softly, though a smirk still flickered across her cheek, "not out loud, anyhow." Teasing never aside for long, Clare nodded again, this bout more confident in execution as she plastered on a poker face. "You do that and you /won't/ be eating any /cookies/," she threatened falsely, pointing a finger again in his direction in the close footing. Mentally kicking herself once they were back in her domain, Clare watched tentatively as Eli ascended the bed towards their game setup, reminding herself over and over that they might as well be sitting on concrete benches and that the location and rudely resonating memories served no place in her concerns right now. The first game wrapped quickly, leaving Clare the victor as she'd assured would be the case. "Funny," she chimed brightly, her eyes fixed to the plastic grid, "I don't taste any words." As the next round kicked off, Clare was substantially now at ease, in such a comfort zone that the thankful change didn't even register. Plinking down her piece after a quick scan of the board, she watched the game unfold, chuckling softly at Eli's claim against the initial round. "How sweet of you," she taunted.
- Eli: had wondered if tonight would be just a normal night. With the tension between the two in the air, practically suffocating him as he tried to air it out, he was unsure if they could ever be normal. His nerves were getting the best of him as they walked around her home, from the room to the closet and even back to the room. Eli's chest had a little pang of nervousness locked away, thumping at the door trying to get out. He knew he had no business being nervous with her, it was Clare. But he just wasn't sure of how they were anymore. One minute, they act like a couple, another they act awkwardly as if they've walked in on each other naked or something. He knew he was to blame for it all. The awkwardness, the nerves, their downfall. But he had hoped that she wouldn't think that way about him. That her view of him would be restored to how it was before everything fell apart at the seams. "You're bluffing," he challenged. He tried his best to concentrate on getting through the night without saying anything dumb, or upsetting to Clare. But even he knew when he thought too much, things never turned out right. Letting his roaming mind get the best of him, he lost the first game, faking it off as if he let her win and continued to play another. "You will be soon, just you wait." He placed his pieces in randomly once more, following a trick pattern he learned in his younger days. He grinned at the board, looking back up to her with a boyish smirk plastered on his face. "You might as well stop here, Edwards. I've got you two ways."
Wow, it’s crazy to think that some of these seniors are about to graduate, and that I was almost joining them. Some days I wonder if I made the right decision, but then I look back at all that’s happened in the past few months, just the last few weeks even, and I’m positive that I did.
Congratulations to the rest of you!
Well, it’s a good thing you don’t have any regrets on that. But I’m sure you’ll get another opportunity just like it next year. They’d be idiots to turn down someone as smart as you.
But all the while, thank you for the congratulations. It’s been the bumpiest ride I’ve ever been on and I’m sure it’s not the last, haha.
More Than I Should | Clare
- Clare: couldn't help but to giggle at the open ended answer Eli provided her with, letting him off the hook from specifying names. Wobbling her head at his reasoning, she hummed bitterly, though her tight smile shed light on how lightly she took it. "Ever an eye for detail," she grumbled, giggling to herself as he brushed away the remnants of her baking session. "That's embarrassing," she murmured, guiding her fingers over the patch of cheek Eli had just touched to rid herself of the trail of fire. "You're talking to her," she sang, clicking her tongue as they rounded the landing. Putting behind them both the small snafu, she led the pair into the cramped space to make a selection, Peering at his choice, she laughed audibly, immediately covering her mouth to console his ego. "I am, I connect all the fours, in fact," she confirmed confidently, grinning before she pushed past him to make their way back to her bedroom to set up. "I'm not pouty, thank you, This is just my game face. Prepare to be whooped," she warned playfully, leading them back into the bedroom. Scooting to the center of her mattress, Clare sat herself atop her bed, swallowing at the memories of other encounters handled on the very comforter before shaking it off, focusing on the box at hand. "May the best tourist win," she offered, plinking down the first of the red chips in the plastic frame.
- Eli: shrugged a little, "Yeah, just somethings I picked up..." he trailed off. He rolled his eyes as she laughed at his random selection, "It was random, don't judge me," he groaned, walking out of the cramper closet and into her room. "Oh, that's what you call it?" he teased. He shook his head, "I'll have you eating those words, Edwards. Just you wait." Eli slowly crawled onto the bed, remembering when him crawling up to her lead to different things, but quickly pushed the thoughts away and sat in front of her as they set up the game. He nodded at her challenge and placed a black chip into the game. As they continued on the game, Eli couldn't help but think about how funny this was. Here he was in his ex's bed, one he was still in love with, spending the entire week with her, hoping to have some kind of breakthrough during the time, playing Connect Four of all games. This wasn't how he imagined being with her, but then again, he knew that doing anything with Clare would make up for anything they didn't do. Just being around her made his day, and he hoped that she knew that. Groaning and rolling his eyes as Clare won the first round, he cleared the game and began again, placing his chip randomly and hoping it would work for him this time. "I let you win that," he grumbled, nervously playing with the chips in his hand as he waited.
More Than I Should | Clare
- Clare: narrowed her eyes at Eli's silly compromise, peering quizzically in his direction as her hands hovered among the reading material. "And which one might that be, dare I ask? And who said these were freshly baked? Maybe I ran out to the market before Jake took the truck," she optioned, purposely avoiding the eyes in question to prevent the laughter threatening to brew. Leading them up the steps, Clare halted in her strides to turn back, shooting Eli a glower at his tease before proceeding their path up to the vacant second story of the home. Once the two teens were alone in her room, the air shifted, palpably so, and while Clare knew the cause of the disturbance, she refused to think on it, knowing it would do nothing but spike the anxiety fluttering in her chest. "I didn't say /every/ morning," she joked, knowing full well that despite the state of separation the two were entangled in, Clare would still make it a point to go through the same motions she always had while the two were together. Her eyes darted away at the course-correction of the slip of the tongue from the boy in the room, begging back a blush at the previously natural compliment. Sparing them both by keeping mum on the slip, not calling attention either, to the fidgeting he was doing. Blinking her gaze upward, Clare was taken aback by Eli's quick agreement to her half-hearted idea, but pushed herself up from the bed regardless. With a waggle of her finger, she directed Eli to the hall closet just outside her bedroom, stepping inside to expose the various childhood games stored there. "No Monopoly, I sense some cocky-winner-syndrome happening there and I'm not sure you want to get exiled in the middle of the night by a sore loser. So with the exception of that, choose whatever you want," she offered, gliding her hand along the box spines.
- Eli: shook his head, "That for me to know, and you to never-hey now, I know when you bake something. You get flour all in your hair, and on your cheeks, and even though you try to clean it all out, there's always," he reached up and wiped her cheek, "A little left," then smirked at her. He stuck his tongue at her when she turned and glared at him. "Well that's not being a very good hostess and I'll just have to complain to the head of management. You don't want that," he teasingly threatened. Eli took notice of the faint blush on her cheeks from his slip up, and smiled a bit to himself, happy to know that he still had that ability over her. He slowly followed behind her, meeting her at the closet as she showed off her collection of games. He lightly laughed at her joke, nodding and looking through the various things she had in there. Picking one randomly, he held up Connect Four, mentally kicking himself for picking such a shitty game. He looked at her a bit embarrassed and said, trying to somehow make this better, "Well, here's to hoping you're good at this game, I'm also an amazing player at this one too. And as cute as pouty Clare is, I'd rather not have her all night."
More Than I Should | Clare
- Clare: wrinkled her nose at Eli's retort, internally amused at the prospect of an accidental peepshow caused by Eli's self-imposed hospitality. "A hefty cost to pay; I didn't specify which Martin," she teased, eyeing his hand as it neared the platter. Scoffing at his claim, Clare simply rolled her eyes, breaking off a portion of cookie as she finished up her purposeful mission, popping it into her mouth as she restacked a few stray magazines on the coffee table. "Someone should," she taunted, giving him a small, goodnatured prod in the ribs. "And I merely brought the cookies out, it was your choice to eat them," she chimed pointedly, fluttering to the other side of the table to meet him. Raising her brows at the pleased undulations leaving Eli's gullet, Clare smirked, chalking the dish as a success judging by his reaction. "Alright, funny guy, cut me some slack, my hostessing is rusty," she breathed, a loose fist finding its way back to her hip. "Unpacking we can do," she nodded, leading the way upstairs to her room, though he knew it just as well as she. Passing the threshold, Clare outstretched either arm to present the familiar casing to Eli, doing a short spin before facing her guest. "Welcome to the Edwards Manor, I hope your stay is satisfactory. Breakfast is included and there's a lovely bay-view of some trees in the backyard. Enjoy your stay," she cooed, tugging his overnight from his grip and plopping it down on her crisp sheets. "I should have gotten a guest book," she grinned, setting herself atop the mattress beside the bag, gently kicking her feet to and fro. "So... Glen left his truck here, but naturally Jake took advantage the moment they left, and it's too dark to do much on foot, so it looks like we're stuck here for the night. We can watch a movie, or play a board game," she suggested lamely, cringing at the idea Alli had given her earlier in the day. "Whatever you want," she shrugged.
- Eli: laughed, shrugging, "Well here's to hoping it's the good-looking one, eh?" followed by a playful wink. Scoffed at her retort, giving her a look, "Oh sure. You place out your delicious freshly baked cookies, and expect me not to eat a single one? Shows how much you know me." Grabbing his bag, he placed it onto his shoulder, "No kidding," he teased her, then proceeded to follow her up the stairs. To his surprise, she escorted him to her room. Normally, that wouldn't strike him as odd, or different but under the circumstances it threw him off in a way. Yes, they were spending this weekend together, no doubt going to be doing couple things, unintentionally of course, but he didn't think he was going to be a guest in her room for the time being. He smiled endearingly at her introduction to her room. He mimicked his non funny joke from earlier and looked around the room as if it was his first time there. "Breakfast every morning, beautiful view of the acres, and a beau- erm, wonderful hostess at my service is included? I think I'll enjoy my stay just fine here, thank you." he played along, placing his hands into his pockets nervously. He nodded along as she explained, figuring the only means of transportation being his car for the time being here. His eyebrows lifted at her board game suggestion, he finding it a cute offer. "Alright," he smiled with a chuckle, "what board game? I'll have you know, if we do play monopoly, I'll win. I always win," he grinned, then sat beside her. "Either that, or Bullfrog and CeCe are just /that/ bad at playing..."
More Than I Should | Clare
- Clare: couldn't help but to chuckle at the tiny trace of fright she'd caused Eli, the small and technically unintentional action calming her nerves some minute amount. Rounding the corner into the room, Clare still wore a faintly etched smirk as she brandished the plate before him, raising a brow at his accurate statement. "I'm well aware," she noted, blinking slowly. "Mostly uninvited, in fact. One day you're going to walk into a freshly woken Martin man and reconsider your comfort level," she threatened, though the tugging of each corner of her lips spoke a different tune. Breezing past him to set down the plate, she brushed a few stray crumbs from her leggings before focusing her attention back. "Besides you," she finished, reminding him of his prior warning. "If I have to deal with an intruder, I guess you're the best option. All you'll demand is food and everyone makes it out alive." Shrugging at her truth, she straightened up the last few articles in the room, pushing the dish closer to him to keep the guest occupied until she was fully tidied. She tried her hardest to set her mind to the task at hand, and not the situation, but it was proving difficult. Even so, she mustered on, fluffing back her hair upon conclusion before resting her hands at either hip. "So," she huffed, at a slight loss, "any idea how we start a vacation?"
- Eli: laughed at the imagine she attempted to place into his mind, the site being something funny to imagine. "I'll take my chances with him if it means I get to see you," he said smoothly, reaching over to grab a cookie from the plate she placed onto the table. "I'm not even in the room for one second and you're already trying to fatten me up, Edwards. Trying to make all my hard work go to waste?" he teased, taking a bite from the cookie and giving a soft, quick, moan from the taste. "I will neither confirm, nor deny that," he grinned, biting some more of the cookie then reaching down to grab a couple more once as she cleaned up. "Well," he said as he finished swallowing, "When I go on vacations, the first thing I do is look around at the scenery." He looked around, smirking at his unfunny joke, 'oohh-ing and ahhh-ing' at things in the home. Once finished his charade, reached over to grab his bag. "The second thing I do is unpack. So, show me the way, m'lady?" For an odd reason, he had gotten the feeling that he wouldn't be moving too far away from this couch. He knew that sleeping with her in the same room would probably cross whatever boundaries that were set with them, but he had hoped that she wouldn't mind him being in there with her.. if he was.