"Damned it Benally! Other way!"
Guillaume shouted at one of their younger players as he ran the wrong way down the field. Anyone else the team might have lynched on the spot, but the young American Indian was just too damned likable for his own good.
He called and turned on a dime immediately encountering resistance from the other team. Rather than trying to be a hero though he passed the ball off to another open player. Yet another reason to like the guy.
This was Navid's one indulgence outside of Terminus, flying and school. It was a standing pick up soccer game. The same group of guys showed up at about the same time every Sunday. They'd mix up the teams to cover for whoever hadn't made it and play for a few hours then go and get a beer. It was very casual, with a very few exceptions they didn't know each other's last names, place of business or exchange contact information. He liked it that way, no expectations, no image to keep up no cover story just come and play hard.
It was cold, but there was no snow on the field and Navid relished in the chance to run taking in great lungfuls of the dry icy air keeping track of the other players and being there to keep his guys out of trouble.
One of the other guys called (it was a nickname he'd picked up Guillaume being to long to shout across the field someone had gone with the short version of the English equivalent). His head shot up and he looked sharply in the direction of his 'name' only having half a second to receive the ball. He then immediately took a shot on goal... which was blocked. But he didn't care, it meant he got to run more.
Once alerted to his mistake he changed direction and passed the ball off to someone more open. He still ran hard though, right up until Guillaume missed the goal. That gave everyone a few seconds to trot and catch their breath, a few people seemed to recover extremely fast, or just not be very affected by all the running at all. Drew had occasionally wondered if they were wolves or just in -really- good shape. Since the played during the day, he knew they weren't vampires.
The ball came back in play and Drew spared half a second to wonder if this counted as fetch or if it was like in dogs, a warped prey drive. He didn't think about it too long before getting back into the thick of things.
There might not be any snow on the field, but between mud and ice there were some very slippery bits, places that even cleats didn't help. Rick, who was playing on the other team today, caught one of those patches and slid down... hard. Getting up slowly Drew saw he wasn't putting any weight on his ankle. He stopped to help Rick up.
"I think it's sprained."
"Rub some dirt in it or walk it off?"
Drew said with a grin that his his concern and Rick laughed.
"I might just take a second. They can put Jorge in."
"Alright then. Hey Jorge! You're up!"
The Latino shouted an acknowledgment and jumped in the game while Drew got Rick over to the bench and sitting down. He wandered off and rummaged through his bag and found a water and an ice pack.
"You're sure you'll live if I get back in there?"
Instead the woman was at a drug rehab group. Tavi decided that she would ease in and take a look at the next week's meeting. She would also see what she could find at the man's house in the way of pill stashes and maybe cash in some favors with friends to check on whether the woman had medical issues that required pain killers or had been admitted for drug related problems in the past.
If she was legitimately going to the drug center then Tavi didn't think it was her place to out the woman. Obviously she didn't want her husband to know. However, she had to admit Mrs. Shoemaker did look pretty swank for someone going to a support group. That raised certain suspicions. Would the woman really go group trolling for potential pick ups? That was just low.
There was a soccer game being played in the field up ahead. One of the players looked vaguely familiar. She came closer to get a better look and sure enough her pack mate was out kicking a ball around.
Tavi was about to wave to him when he shouted to another player who apparently was going the wrong way. And who was apparently also quite familiar. She snickered as Drew turned around and went back in the other direction. Shaking her head, she muttered. "Typicalâ€. At least some things didn't change.
Running another hand through her hair, she straightened the pastel pink baby doll tee that claimed "Lag Killsâ€ in white letters along the front. It wasn't the most fashion forward she had ever been but at least the white jogging pants matched, which is more than she could say on some mornings. Tavi wasn't exactly sure who she was fidgeting about, Guillaume or the ex.
In any case, she figured she was here now. If her pack mate had seen her then it would be rude to run away. Tavi waited until Guillaume was looking in her general direction and waved.
He trotted back over to the sidelines, which was, conveniently and serendipitously in Tavi's direction as well. He liked the hair, very appropriate for spring. Motioning for one for the other guys to take his place he needled Drew.
"You done playing Florence Nightingale or are you just looking for a map?â€
Navid cheerfully punched the kid in the shoulder.
"Tavi!â€ He said with a bright smile brushing his own hair out of his face. "Looking to get in the game?â€
They didn't have any women playing, it was an unspoken rule that it was a guys only. Sometimes a wife or girlfriend would come watch but not for the whole game, usually just a drop of or pick up thing.
She'd obviously been out running, and would undoubtedly make them all look bad, so he rummaged about in his bag and tossed her one of his bottles of water. As he did so Guillaume couldn't help but notice Drew looked slightly awkward and sheepish but he was also smiling at Tavi. Not that he blamed the kid she was cute, although she looked young for Drew and that concerned Navid even though he knew better. But he'd let those two sort it out.
He saw Tavi, it was hard to miss Tavi. She was still adorable and he really did feel bad about how things had gone. Drew didn't know why he'd reacted so strongly to her being part of the other pack. It should have by rights made things easier, his head knew that. But instinct told him that the relationship just wasn't meant to be. Well whatever the problem had been, he took the blame, but that didn't mean he didn't like her still.
So he was slightly taken aback when Guillaume greeted her so familiarly, it might even qualify as a little jealous and suspicious. Unconsciously he furrowed his brow and took a better look at Guillaume trying to see fur or pointy teeth or something. This guy could be a Vyuser R'asa. Or he could just be a regular run of the mill human Drew reminded himself before giving Tavi a hesitant little wave.
It wasn't like he expected her to deck him, nope that was how Reign had communicated and she'd only meant it the once and he'd deserved that, but he was still sort of nervous. When the hell did he start having such trouble with girls? Maybe he should talk to someone about that at some point.
"Kid! You getting back in this?" One of the guys shouted.
"Yeah. I'm coming, which way is our goal again?"
He shouted and three players answered in unison, "That way!"
"Ummmm... I'll be back in a few. Don't go away?"
"I won't eat her if that's what you're afraid of." Guillaume answered and suddenly Drew was aware that Guillaume was actually a good looking kind of exotic guy and serious competition. Not that he was competing, but... well... He decided not to think about it and ran back into the game.
"Hi Drew.â€ She watched her former boyfriend evenly, deciding just how adult she wanted to be. Right now she didn't think he deserved to be yelled at in front of his friends but that decision could change at a moment's notice.
He was asked to return to the game but before he did, Drew asked her not to go anywhere. Tavi arched an eyebrow at him and then turned her attention to Guillaume who swore to Drew that he wasn't going to eat her.
"As if you could.â€ She remarked tartly before giving him a grin. "I think he's more afraid of me convincing you to help me kick his butt.â€ Tavi's eyes slid toward the moving target in question. It was a nice butt, too bad it belonged to a dumb ass.
"Have you known Drew long?â€
((OOC: Despite that being in Guillaume's post, the thought that she would make them all look bad was the first response Tavi had to his question so I thought I would go with it anyway. ))
That was an odd little exchange. Navid looked between Tavi and Drew curiously. Obviously they knew each other and given Drew's hesitation he doubted it was a passing acquaintance. The kid ran off, which seemed to Navid to be a very good idea, and he nodded that they should take a step or two away from Rick who was nursing his knee on the bench.
"I might like to try."
Guillaume gave her a wolfish grin. It didn't take any effort to flirt with Tavi. They had done so before and he found it to be fun
Oh that was interesting, just a little bitterness. Guillaume had a pretty good guess what the relationship had been and apparently it hadn't ended quite as well as it could have. That was interesting, he would have thought that Drew was quite charming and managed to end things on the 'friends' note more often than night. This wasn't exactly something he wanted to get in the middle of, but he'd also be willing to stand up for Tavi if that is what needed to be done.
"Not too long. He showed up here in the fall and wound up in the game. Beyond the occasional beer with the guys after the game..."
He shrugged, it was a gesture very much like his cousin's, what it said though was he didn't know Drew well.
"Would I be wrong in presuming you've known him longer?"
Apparently Guillaume hadn't known Drew very long. There was likely a good chance that they didn't know each others' super secret identities then unless they had also met at the gatherings. That was unlikely since Therese's cousin seemed to be keeping a low profile since he arrived in Nachton.
"Yeah, we met when he was lost.â€ Oddly enough she had been running then too. Drew kept seeing her at her fashion best. Ah well, she had shown her better choices for a couple of their dates. "I know that's hard to imagine.â€
She looked over at the tall Kadzait and then back at Guillaume. "He had problems with the family.â€ The subtle stress on the words would likely be enough for her pack mate to understand exactly which family she meant. Tavi shrugged and pretended it didn't matter but it still hurt to be rejected not for herself but for what she was...and by someone who was also a werewolf.
A bit of back and forth made most things more fun. Even reading a book was more fun if you could engage with the characters and story, bring yourself into it. And if it added to something that passive, it went without saying that in a more active situation everyone should bring something to the table and nothing should be taken for granted.
Navid chuckled lightly at the idea that Drew and Tavi had met with the young man was lost.
"He seems to get that way rather a lot."
It had to be a challenge to live that way. Guillaume had wondered on more than one occasion how Drew got from point A to point B.
Both eyebrows shot up rather high. That was quite a surprise. It wasn't something he'd expected to hear. It had been one thing to assume they'd been dating and quite another to hear it was family trouble that had ended it.
"It was that serious was it?"
Tavi had no way of knowing this was rather a sore spot for Guillaume. His own mother had abandoned him because of her fear of the Pack. He was set apart by his father, had his name changed and had to hide his relationship with his mother all because she had very severe issues with the family. It was a type of rejection he knew well and could empathize with.
"At least he isn't running the other way at the very site of you..."
Although irrationally upset by Drew's rejection of Tavi, Navid did give the boy that much credit.
Shaking her head, she answered about how serious their relationship was, finding it a little surreal to be talking to Guillaume about it. "No, not really. It was more an accidental outing.â€ Tavi didn't say much more about it here. "Explanations led to revelations which apparently led to separation.â€
Tavi shrugged when he said that at least Drew wasn't running away at the very sight of her. "Smart move. Everyone knows not to run away from the dangerous creatures.â€ She was small but she could hold her own. So could Drew; she was sure. Tavi doubted he would have run away even if she had opted for the 'kick his ass' option. "Especially if the creature could easily catch you.â€
"You might want to think about that if you intend on keeping up with this little challenge you've mentioned.â€ She grin wickedly at him. "If it goes horribly wrong then you'd have to get in your plane and fly to stay ahead of me.â€ In the past people have worried about what her father might do if a relationship with her went horribly wrong; Tavi always thought they would have been better served to worry about what -she- would do.
There was more to this story that Tavi was sharing, but as much as he wanted to ask he wouldn't force the story from her. It was hers to share or keep as she saw fit.
He grinned again as she continued to play.
"Hmmmm... I'm not sure I've ever been the one being chased. It sounds like an exciting change of pace."
Even the threat didn't unsettle him that much, although he did wonder if Drew was in a bit of hot water. But he didn't think about that much, there were much more entertaining things to think about.
"I might just offer you a ride if you'd rather. A scenic overlook for any retaliation you might have in mind. Or would you prefer a bribe? Gems? Caviar? Kobe beef? Or just cash?"
Navid had noticed she had the same dietary preferences as Kiyo and his cousin. Sometimes food proved to be the most effective bribe when the menu selection was limited.
Out of the corner of his eye Guillaume kept an eye on the game. It seemed to be winding down, although he couldn't tell who was winning. Drew was the victim of a rather aggressive and slightly unethical hit and went sprawling. He winced a bit, but the kid did get right back up and keep going.
"I am open to suggestions. I'd like to stay on your good side after all."
He said with a bright smile.
Drew was a good reason for why she didn't feel inclined to chase anyone in the other more flirty sense that Guillaume so obviously had moved on to. She had made her interests quite clear and it seemed to push Drew further away. Granted he was directionally challenged. Still it was a reminder that being aggressive wasn't always wise.
For instance, she had met Julian not too long ago and they had managed to have a nice meal, talk, flirt, and exchange phone numbers without any more needing to come of it than that. It had worked out fine and she hadn't scared him away.
She did laugh at his bribe offer. "See, you did strike me as a smart man.â€ Tavi took another sip of her drink, declining to answer which of those things might actually work. He hadn't gotten on her bad side yet so he didn't have a dire need to know. Besides trial and error could be fun and it said a lot about the person doing the experimenting. Some guys picked what they would want, some guys picked what they thought any girl would want, some picked what they thought you would want and some actually have it figured out.
Of course he could just try all of it at once. The spray and pray method might work with gifts.
"I will let you figure it out if you ever need to.â€ Tavi turned to the game to see Drew running after the guy who now had the ball.
"So were you wanting to get back to the game?â€ After all she didn't want to keep him from something that was obviously a regular bit of fun. Tavi would be tempted to join but first she'd have to convince them she could keep up when no doubt half of them would be sure she couldn't and then she'd have to try hard not out run them so badly that she embarrassed the lot of them. Though it was a fun thought. Personally playing with humans wasn't much fun for her; she preferred pack games where she could run almost all out.
Reserved woman were never much fun. You didn't know where you stood with them and constantly felt shut down. Not that he wanted to be passive, it was a fine line between predator and prey he liked the balancing act.
Navid waggled his eyebrows a bit when she laughed, feeling quite satisfied with himself that he'd lightened the mood slightly. He, however, couldn't help but notice she'd not told him which of those ideas, if any, would actually work. She was letting him chase her a bit. If the occasion ever arose he would just have to make his best guess. He had understood that Tavi and his cousin were on friendly terms and he wondered if ThÃ©rÃ¨se would be able to offer any advice.
Of course thinking that that just reminded him that she currently wasn't speaking to him.
Ah well. At least he didn't need to bribe Tavi at this point either.
"Quite fair and reasonable of you. Not that I would expect anything less given the company you keep."
The fact that Tavi could be, and was, friends with Evan spoke quiet loudly to her character and open mindedness. So if he did ever piss her off Guillaume figured he'd at least have a shot to redeem himself.
"No... the teams are even now. I'm on the sidelines until someone else wanders out or they call it. Do you play?"
It was probably for the best that he was out early today. While not the fastest on the field Guillaume could run for ages. Generally he hid his unusual stamina rather well, but it would do everyone good to see him calling it early today.
It had taken her a long time to stop choosing relationships based on whether or not they would make her mother turn amusing shades of red; Tavi wasn't sure she wanted what small amount of trust her father was finally showing her to fade away with one potentially bad choice.
Maybe after the pack fully accepted Therese as her father's girlfriend then it wouldn't look so bad and maybe her father would believe that any dating happened as a natural result of friendship.
"Hmm being called fair and reasonable doesn't happen often.â€ She grinned at him. Nor was she usually praised for the company she kept but as she was currently in Guillaume's company Tavi decided that maybe that wasn't a good thing to mention. He didn't look like an upstart, punk, thug or criminal. However she had been expanding her network lately to include more upstanding members of society.
"I play football. Of course.â€ She grew up in Europe. It was one of the more universal sports through out the different countries she had lived in. "It is baseball that baffles me.â€
Navid said with a grin understanding some of her comment. After all most people wouldn't say he was reasonable for keeping company with a vampire. It was something they had in common.
He glanced over his shoulder for a moment as he heard some of the ring leaders shouting at each other. Apparently, there had been on final goal scored putting one team at least three up and as they'd been playing for several hours they were in the process of calling it. Calls, negotiations and good natured arguments about where to go for beer, who was going, who was skipping, were called as people came back to grab their gear.
"It makes more sense than cricket... but that isn't saying much is it? I'm afraid sports with a ball and a stick don't make much sense to me either."
About that time Drew trotted back over, although he did so apparently hesitantly, as if he was trying to work out if he was interrupting or not. Or perhaps he was trying to decide if Tavi was going to kick his ass.
"Baseball is easy. Three strikes, four balls, four bases, three outs. Just a bunch of numbers."
It was cheerful but considerably more reserved than Guillaume had seen the young man. Navid's lips twisted wryly.
"Did we win?"
"Nah, they did."
Navid just snorted. Teams changed weekly, hell they changed during the game, it really didn't matter who won or lost.
"Should I leave you two alone?"
He asked, but made no move to actually go. That, as far as he was concerned, was Tavi's call. Drew's shrug seemed to indicate he felt the same.
((OOC... I'll probably write a separate post for him next time but for now Drew is just in this one.))
Apparently Drew and Guillaume had been on the same team and that team had lost. "My condolences on your defeat." How did two werewolves lose in a pick up game with a bunch of humans? Of course they were both probably doing their best to seem normal but Tavi figured with their team's score not going up that it might have been time for some stunning heroics. Perhaps that was another reason why she shouldn't play; she hated to lose.
Guillaume asked if he should leave the two of them alone. Drew shrugged and they both looked at her. When had running become so complicated? She shook her head. "You don't have to leave, unless you want to." She wasn't going to send him away but he might not want to hang around if there was a deeply personal conversation about to happen. Awkward.
And that would be a good question; was a deeply personal conversation about to happen? "Was there something you wanted to say, Drew?" Tavi looked at him with a questioning expression.
Drew watched Guillaume excuse himself tactfully and couldn't blame the guy. Given half a choice he would have wandered off too, but he'd been enough of an ass in this situation and didn't want to make it worse.
Not that he'd figured out exactly what he wanted to say. Drew had a certain amount of pride and wasn't great at groveling. He looked down at Tavi and her minty, springy hair and recognized she had that same pride. It wasn't just a wolf thing, not all wolves had it, but it didn't help matters.
With a final look at Guillaume who was doing his best to look like he wasn't listening Drew swallowed that pride.
"Yeah... I'm sorry. I should have handled all of it better."
Without even thinking about it Drew employed one of his abilities. Tavi had a right to be pissed at him, but this might just take the edge off of any anger. It wouldn't be enough to get her to forgive him or throw her arms around him unless she wanted to but it might keep him from getting hit.
But there it was in black and white, he'd screwed up and he apologized, it didn't make it better, but maybe the thought counted?
((OOC... Drew does have Pitiful Wretch. Up to you how she wants to respond to it.))
She raised her eyebrows at Drew's rather short answered apology. Not an explanation, just an apology for dumping her like a biased insular jerk. "Ya think?â€
He looked at her with big puppy dog brown eyes and she suddenly thought that harming him, even verbally was really beneath her. You know what they say, a fight with an unarmed man and all that. Tavi doubted he could hold his own and it would be like kicking the gigantic puppy repeatedly to even demand that he give her at least some sort of reason for his behavior. Instead she thought it was pathetic that this guy, unable to deal with a woman who was different, strong willed, with a mind and interests of her own, was going to be the leader of his own small pack one day. Tavi hoped his family had some alternatives handy or that his grandfather or whoever was currently in charge lived a very long time. They were going to need it if they had to wait for Drew to grow up and grow a pair.
"Its fine, Drew. Disappointing but obviously I'll live.â€ She sighed and gave him a pat on the arm. "Go find some nice giant woman with a compass who will make you happy.â€ Tavi wasn't going to out right say Kadzait but that was the hinted at reference. They were all bigger than she was, even the smallest of them, at least in their wolf form. Tavi idly wondered if they had 5'2â€ pack members who became giant wolves. Maybe she would ask Xephier the next time she saw him. "If I ever need any help herding cats then I know who to call.â€ Whatever anger she had felt had dissipated and now she was just depressed.
She needed to run, a real run, not this jogging thing that she had been doing where people could see her. Tavi waved to Guillaume and found a smile somewhere inside herself for him. "I'll see you later, okay?â€
With a last look at Drew, she took off and headed toward the nearest batch of trees where she could run all out until they ended. Then she'd have to slow down to a crawl and until she could find some privacy again.
((OOC: Probably not his best move but, on the bright side, it did keep him from getting punched in the face. On the down side, it made him look weak and pathetic and not many girls find that attractive. Especially ones that are angry with him and just want him to explain himself.
OOC: Tavi Out, with the outcome turning out the way it did she's currently feeling too depressed and lonely to hang around and be friendly. She doesn't want to inflict her own angst on Guillaume either. ))
Guillaume came over and placed a hand on his shoulder.
"I don't know what you did. But you did that wrong."
The other man didn't say anything else or stick around. He shouted back at one of the other players and headed off to go have a beer with everyone. Usually that was Drew's favorite part of the game, he still wasn't a huge soccer fan, but today he didn't think it was a good idea at all. He just wandered off to find his old beat up truck and went home. He had to think about some things.
((OOC... both out))