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Ravi FitzCoventry last won the day on May 21 2019

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About Ravi FitzCoventry

  • Rank
    Supporting Character

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  • Gender
    Male
  • Location:
    Wherever seems interesting
  • Interests
    Philandering, wenching, womanising, heartbreaking... And he likes girls, too.

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  1. "Funny." Ravi commented dryly, taking a breath and relaxing back into the examination table's padded surface as Sable cut the remains of his shirt away. He fixed his gaze on Sable's face as she worked, now and then tempted to glance down from some morbid fascination at what she was doing, but all things considered her face, even focused in concentration, was a better sight. "I'm going to have to reopen the wound to get at the bullet." Sable told him, her professional demeanour broken only by the swift glance to his face. Her gaze warmed for a second as she noticed his golden eyes were on her, then the professionalism was back, and Sable's attention was once more wholly on what she was doing. Ravi heard the metallic scrape of her picking up implements and then... Well, nothing much. Some tugging - vaguely disturbing but not painful. Sable's expression was intent, yet calm, and Ravi watched the mild changes in the shape of her lips, the exotic shape of her eyes as they tightened or curved while she worked. He felt something cool - not cold, but cooler than his skin, running down the outside of his chest to pool under his back. My blood, he supposed, trying not to fidget, or even to breath deeply. The uncomfortable tugging grew in intensity, becoming almost painful, and he was aware of a scraping sensation in his chest. Talking would probably be a bad idea. So instead he focused on musing. What was he? What was Amelia? What was Sable doing later? What would a woman pick up in terms of carnal knowledge over three centuries of extended life? Or eight, for that matter: what did Ravenna want with him - and why did the remembrance of her licking his blood from her finger send prickles of heat through his skin? He tried to get his mind to focus on something other than his favorite past-time and instead pondered other matters. Who was Mourne? Were there other 'chosen' going through the same weirdness right now? Was Amelia going to do something stupid and annoy their hostess? Did the crazy extend into the bedroom? What was Amelia doing la- Dammit. It's said that men think about sex once every five minutes. Ravi wondered how they managed it so little. Thank whatever gods watched over him that he could multi-task. Sort of. More scraping in his chest, and a steady pulling sensation that was over the line of discomfort and into pain. Ravi let out a low hiss and closed his eyes. "Almost done." he heard Sable murmur, her voice reassuring, a balm on his nerves. More tugging, more liquid pooling against his skin, and then - *clink* "Got it." Sable didn't sound triumphant so much as satisfied as she dropped the bullet into a small dish and then began to swab and clean the wound. "Hmm. A couple of stitches and a bandage should be all you need, given what we've seen of how you heal- Oop!" She caught him as he half-rolled, coughing, blood flecking his lips as the fluid in his lung decided it was time to come up and out. Heedless of the blood on her own dark clothing, Sable held a shallow bowl under his face with one hand as her other arm effortlessly supported his spasming form. The paroxysms ceased, and Ravi sank back onto the bed with a weak groan as Sable took the bowl away. Eyes closed, he was aware of her dabbing a cloth on his face and mouth, then going back to sewing him up. He must have drifted off, because it seemed like he'd barely closed his eyes before she was nudging him awake. One of the two huge men was present, and helped Ravi into a wheelchair before stepping aside, letting Sable wheel him out of the infirmary. "Clean up." she told the... guard? Servant? as she left, nodding to the examination bed. They emerged into the hallway, Sable wheeling him to a guest room similar to Amelia's. "Let's get the blood washed off before you start feeling pain again." she suggested, nodding towards the bathroom. As being bathed by Sable went, it was a considerably less erotic experience than Ravi had imagined - she was gentle enough, but businesslike, having him sit on the edge of a bathtub as she wiped him down. "There's a robe and pajamas on the bed." she told him as she helped him up and through into the bedroom - tastefully decorated in dark reds and golds and, yes, black. She seated him on the edge of the bed, hesitating and stepping back as she considered him. "Do you need help?" she asked almost caringly, then corrected "And more to the point, if I do help, will you behave?" "No, thank you to the first question. Hell no to the second." Ravi managed a smile, causing Sable's lips to quirk in a grin and her head to shake momentarily. "Good. Because I'd have one of the bodyguards do it." she teased, turning to leave. She stopped in the doorway, looking back at the half-naked aristocrat as though she had more to say, but instead left in silence. Slowly, and with care to not pull at the stitches under the bandage around his chest, Ravi stripped off his by now ruined pants and socks and shoes. Turning, he found there were indeed a soft cotton set of pajamas and a warm-looking robe on the bed, which he donned before laying back on the bed itself, staring up at the decorative canopy. There was a sense, only a sense, that he was in danger here, but he'd been in dangerous situations before. Panicking wouldn't help matters, and he was certainly in no shape for a heroic escape. Besides, the danger wasn't so much one of intent on his hostess's part so much as just... part of her being what she was. In his opinion, anyway. Given her remarks about his taste, he did feel somewhat like a prepared side of veal. And would that necessarily be so bad, to have her drink his blood? What was it like? Did she have to kill to gain nourishment, or could she just tap him like a maple tree? Did it hurt? These and all his other questions chased him down into slumber as he closed his eyes. He'd completed what she asked of him. He was wounded. Surely some rest was in ord- Reclining on a luxurious bed, in a room of dark red and black, Ravi slept.
  2. "Well..." Ravi shifted slightly on the medical bed. "Considering that I took a bullet in the left lung and I haven't drowned in my own blood and-" he peeled back the bandage a little to check "-the wound doesn't seem to be leaking much, something is definitely up." He re-covered the wound and winced as he let his arm drop to his side. "It still hurts, though. Sort of an itchy burning ache." The handsome young man still seemed to be finding breathing difficult, and his tanned features - which were the same light golden-bronze as his chest, Amelia noted without meaning to - were drawn and pale. "Yeah. What's with that anyway?" Amelia peered at him, then at the location of the bandage. She wasn't an expert: most of her medical knowledge came from hospital depictions in movies, but most people who'd been shot there should probably be ventilated - or was that intubated? Fibrillated? - by now. "Does De Sombra really think you'll be fine once her Girl-Friday digs a bullet out of you?" "Buggered if I know." Ravi wheezed a little, smiling. "I'd imagine, though, that she at least believes that whatever I am, I'm more resilient than I look." He made a face and glanced around for a mirror. Finding none, he shrugged, wincing again. "If I look as bad as I feel, I'd have to be." There were a few moments of silence as he gazed at her, his golden eyes gleaming under the overhead lights of the infirmary. When he opened his mouth, Amelia half expected another witticism, or perhaps some flirtation as he tried to distract himself, but instead his tone and expression were ones of earnest curiousity. "Who do you think this Mourne fellow is? I seem to remember his name being bandied around at some art gallery thing not long ago - the same one I met Ravenna at, come to think of it." He frowned slightly. "Some irate woman was storming up to Ravenna, demanding answers, then storming away again in a worse mood. Mourne's name came up then." He sighed, looking up at the ceiling. "I remember her because she had spectacular breasts and seemed batshit crazy." He winked one golden eye at her. "Always remember the crazy ones." "Lovely." Amelia rolled her eyes at him, trying not to smile. "Just what I need on my obituary - 'Ravi remembered her because she was crazy'." "No, you got upgraded to 'quirky'. And 'looks good in a tight dress'. And 'let me rest my head on her lap after I'd been shot'." He added in a slightly chiding manner, one corner of his mouth twitching as he fought the urge to smile. "Don't sell yourself so short. I don't take bullets for just anyone."
  3. "Seconded." Ravi raised his glass in a salute, then sipped his drink, appreciating the taste that masked the taste of his own blood in his mouth. He took a labored breath, then set the glass aside and regarded Ravenna D'Sombra soberly. "I've taken a lot on faith, which so far I do not regret." He paused, considering his chest. "Which I realise may sound strange considering I am sitting here with a bullet in my vitals." Looking back up at both women, the one barely out of girlhood and the other one... well, much older by far, he continued. "But I'd really like to know what to do now, what is expected of me for being 'chosen', and what the benefit package is. There's got to be something to counterbalance getting shot at, after all. If all this is true, and I've certainly seen some amazing things to suggest it is, how do we discover what we are?"
  4. Ravi had blinked at the sudden disappearance and reappearance of D'Sombra, even coming as it did on top of an evening that was best described as 'interesting'. He settled back on the admittedly fancy looking knock-off chaise, with Sable helping him get comfortable. "She loves doing that to people." the lovely - what was the word? Ghoul? She didn't look particularly ghoulish - murmured as she placed a cushion behind the young man's head. He smiled slightly through his pain at her. "Always fun to keep people off-balance now and then." The handsome Englishman murmured back before coughing spasmodically for a few beats. Sable patiently held his shoulders as he coughed, preventing him from moving around too much, and as the fit passed and he took a ragged breath she poured him a glass of water. He took few swallows as she held it for him, then the dark haired woman set the glass aside and reached for the front of Ravi's shirt. "We should take a look at it." Sable kept her voice low, plainly not wanting to interrupt Amelia and D'Sombra's conversation. Quickly and efficiently, she unfasted the buttons and peeled back the blood-soaked shirt, her gaze finding his as he watched her. "If you say anything about me not wasting time getting you out of your clothes, I'm going to poke the bullet hole." she warned him, eyes narrowing even though her lips curved in the faintest of smiles. "Perish the thought." Ravi replied, giving her a charmingly lopsided smile, then gritting his teeth and hissing in pain as Sable gently probed around the wound. "Jesus! That hurts." he groaned. "Bleeding has stopped." she informed him, tearing a clean scrap of his shirt off and dipping it in the water before wiping away the worst of the blood around the hole. She watched his face. "How are you feeling? Other than in pain." "I can feel the damn thing inside me." he muttered, acutely aware despite the pain of how gentle her touch was. He studied her expression, golden eyes half-lidded as he tried to relax. "My, my. Is that concern I see there?" he asked teasingly. "Concern that I don't get any more of your blood on me." Sable retorted, but she smiled a little as she dipped another clean scrap of Louis Vuitton shirt into the glass of water and swabbed away more of the blood on his chest. He smiled back, letting his eyes close as he just listened to the conversation happening not too far away.
  5. "Apartment isn't a... good plan." Ravi's voice contained an audible wheeze, rendered breathless as he was by both pain and a collapsed lung. "If they're hunting you, it's the first place they'd look." He coughed. "Hell, they might even have friends there watching the place." Sable's eyes sought him out in the read mirror. "How're you holding up, Ravi?" "Fan-bloody-tastic. I'll be dancing a jig in no time." he replied hoarsely, the taste of his own blood coppery in his mouth. He wasn't feeling very good, despite Sable's assurances that he wasn't in immediate mortal danger from his wound. She didn't even know what he was, the young Englishman grumped silently, how could she know how much danger he was in, for crying out loud?! He reached up and tapped Amelia's arm where it rested next to his head on her lap. "D'Sombra implied to me that what you think you know isn't important." he told the scared woman, then coughed again before adding. "I rather get the impression... that it's you who is important, not whatever you're working on. We should go to D'Sombra."
  6. As the pain receded Ravi was dimly aware that this must be shock. So... this was it. It hardly seemed sporting, really. His whole life he'd been a ne'er-do-well, flouting rules of decency and morality, disgracing his family, taking advantage of people who thought themselves to be his friends, all with a razor smile and a soft word to deflect criticism or blame. And in the end, he'd been shot saving a cute-but-crazy girl from faceless assassin corporate drones, all to chase the meaning of mysterious dreams and cryptic truths dangled in front of him by an immortal woman. He- Wasn't feeling too bad, all things considered. He spat up some of the blood that was in his throat, clearing his airway, and whilst he was aware of a certain breathlessness from the inoperative lung, Ravi couldn't detect anything more than a fiery itching irritation as he drew another breath. He chuckled weakly, looking up at the concerned face of Amelia. "Rumors of my demise have been greatly exaggerated." he said hoarsely. "Allegedly." As she drew back a little, he opened his ruined shirt and looked down, noting how the blood wasn't so much flowing as oozing sluggishly, the wound almost looking like it was trying to scab over. Ravi stared in fascinated amazement, then looked up at Amelia, shrugging slightly, before turning his attention to Sable's dulcet tones. "I'll see your blouse and raise you a Vuitton shirt, if we're comparing expenses." he retorted. "I wasn't counting on getting shot. Though it doesn't seem to be as painful as the movies make out." he added, fighting the urge to giggle. Blood loss, that must be why. "Or maybe it's a new humane type of bullet issued to prevent lawsuits." Laying in the back of Sable's car, he smiled up at Amelia, blood staining his lips and chin. "Y'know, I'm sure I'd feel a lot better with my head on your lap." he suggested, golden eyes glimmering with mad humor. "Always wondered what it'd feel like to die a hero, lovely women stroking my hair and crying over me. Just don't tell my family. They'd never believe it..."
  7. "Bugger." Ravi stepped back from the door, glaring at it in exasperation as he yanked out his phone and tapped out a message. [DOOR STUCK!] "I thought you knew where you were going!" Amelia's voice carried an edge of panic as she looked from the door to the handsome young man. Ravi pushed his phone back into his pocket and gave her a long-suffering gaze. "I do! That's the damn service door! It's not-" he turned and kicked at it. "-my fault it's-" kick "-stuck!" This was not shaping up to be a good night. Amelia was cute, but also a bit crazy when drunk - ordinarily something that promised all sorts of delights, but the type of crazy so far exhibited was more 'rubber room' and less 'rubber dungeon'. Then the crazy had reached out to him, and he was on the run from two suits whom, he instinctively felt, meant him and Amelia no good whatsoever. His amber-yellow eyes narrowed in fear and fury, he pushed down the release bar and hammered his shoulder against the door. "Open, you fucking-" the rest of his tirade was lost in a series of grunts of effort as he repeatedly threw his weight against the obstacle. Amelia glanced down the corridor back the way they'd come, then stepped up to help, the cold sense of danger doing an admirable job of sobering her up. Together, the two glanced at each other, then threw their shoulders against the door.
  8. Ravi blinked, obviously taken aback as he watched Amelia spit denunciations, jump off her barstool, then land on her arse and try to scramble away from him. The blink? Human experimentation? What was that he'd seen in the shadows when she'd been going on about the blinking? What in the hell..? He sighed, sliding off his own stool as Amelia fetched up against the legs of another club-goer, his own movements a graceful and poised counterpoint to her frantic drunken scrambling as he stepped over and leaned down, offering her a hand. Whatever particular brand of deep-seated nuttiness his oblique confession had jogged loose, it was plain that Amelia was distressed. "So far as I know, my employer has nothing to do with human experiments or the blinking lights in clubs, Amelia." he said in a soothing voice, his hand remaining outstretched to the frightened woman. "I'm here for two reasons: to get you safely away from people who are after you, and to get you to meet with my employer, who wants to help you to find the truth you've been chasing before those other people can stop you." He kept his eyes on hers and his tone calming. "So far as I know she means you no harm. And nor do I. But there are people who do. And we need to get ahead of them."
  9. "Mysterious, hmm?" The charmingly crooked smile was distracting, especially as Ravi was mirroring Amelia's body language, leaning in slightly as she did, propping his chin on his hand and studying her up close. "I can live with mysterious." Behind the devastating smile, he was wondering whether Amelia had picked up on Sable's surveillance. Or whether the other party Madam D'Sombra had mentioned was also following Amelia around. If that was the case, then perhaps enough time had been wasted. After all, the other party - the 'Powers That Be', as Ravenna had called them - had been painted as people who didn't wish the girl well... at all. His task was not so much to sleep with Amelia - though that wasn't necessarily a minus - but to deliver her to D'Sombra with open ears so the vampire, she's a vampire, you know it immortal woman could give them both the Truth. Whatever that was. The game was fun, this flirtation and steady seduction. But if the Powers That Be were closing in, drawing things out further would be dangerous. "Well, my colleague - employer if you must know - is quite high circle, very plugged-in to matters that normal people don't usually even notice." he said casually, watching Amelia's face. "She has an eye for the unique and unusual - whether that is objects or people." He took another sip of his drink, his eyes never leaving Amelia's.
  10. "Been overdoing it, frankly." Ravi settled onto the stool beside her, one elbow on the bar, half-turned towards Amelia as he spoke to her. Whether it was his dress sense, his posture, his looks or some combination of the three he almost gave the appearance of posing for a GQ photoshoot, but there was an effortless quality to the overall effect, as though grace and poise were an extension of him rather than some false face. "Grinding away, nothing but work, work, work... Thank you." he smiled momentarily at the bartender as a drink was slid in front of him, picking it up and taking an experimental sip. Evidently approving, or at least not revolted, he refocused his warm golden eyes on Amelia. "So a colleague suggested this place to blow off some steam." he went on, smiling a little. "Said it had a good energy and decent DJs. I'll confess, though, it's reassuring to see a familiar face here. You with anyone, or can I monopolise you?" he asked with a devastating hint of dimple, his gaze mischievous for a second before sobering a little, one hand toying with his drink as he regarded her. "But seriously - I'm sorry to hear you're not doing well. What's the problem, if that's not rude to ask?"
  11. "Well, this is short notice." Ravi drawled from the back seat as Sable wove the black (of course) sedan through the streets and traffic. Glancing at the rear-view mirror, the efficiently professional woman caught a glimpse of a bare shoulder and chest the shade of golden coffee - and wasn't sure whether the pang in her lower abdomen was relief or disappointment that more of the mostly-naked man was not currently visible as he shifted and twisted around back there, getting changed into the clothing he'd insisted on going back to his apartment for when she's peremptorily yanked him out of his 'day' job. "She's been busy these last two weeks." Sable focused on her driving as she gave him the lowdown. "She just surfaced tonight, and given how erratic her patterns are I thought it best-" "Yes, yes... unf... You're quite right." he managed to squeeze into the stylish not-quite-skin-tight black slacks and sat up, causing Sable to glance at the mirror again, this time only seeing the play of the lights outside in the green-gold eyes as they stared back at her in the reflection, the rest of Ravi's features lost in the gloom but for a hint of a cheekbone and the line of his jaw. "You think you can handle this?" she asked him bluntly. "Nothing is certain." He shrugged, pulling on the pale green shirt that itself contained enough hints of yellow in the shade that it complemented his eyes. "Without constant contact, I'm largely starting afresh. On the upside, it's a nightclub. If she's on the prowl, so much the better. If she's just there to dance and drink, then perhaps she won't mind company." His lips quirked in a wry smile. "As my boss likes to say: be what the clientele want you to be, sell them their own fantasy." "And what's her fantasy, then?" "I'm not sure." Ravi sounded almost cheerful as he pulled on his shoes and straightened once more, white teeth flashing in a grin as he ran his hands back through his hair. "I'm rather looking forward to finding out. - that's the fun part Well... one of the fun parts. Finding out about people: what they like, what they hate, what they desire..." his eyes met her again and Sable re-focused on the driving, pretending not to hear the soft, ever-so soft chuckle from behind her. The Two Ton Tones was a decent enough place. The vibe was partyish without being sleazy - well, no more sleazy than most nightclubs - the DJ seemed to be competent and enthusiastic, and the bar staff could mix a drink without referring to a crib sheet every ten seconds. Better yet, the place knew Ravi. He'd been here a time or two in the past, and so when he walked to the head of the short line one of the bouncers nodded and waved him past the rope. That bit of theatre made Ravi smile a little even as he thanked the man and pressed a fifty into his hand. It was a symbiotic relationship - Two Ton Tones was not so exclusive that they had actual VIPs coming here often, and Ravi was not really a VIP. But by a little game of let's pretend, the club got to be seen letting mysterious and handsome strangers in with some ceremony and he got to be treated as someone special, which in turn would encourage those who witnessed the exchange to think he was someone special, which ironically made him someone special. And so the little lie became a little bit true. Appearances were not everything, he would be the first to admit. But in the game of influence, perception informed opinion. Some people might argue the point. But then, they would be arguing it from the other side of the rope whilst queuing outside. So sorry, Ravi would say, I can't hear you over the sound of the club I got into first. The place was well packed, he noted as he descended from the lobby to the main floor, eyes searching along the bar first for- Aha, there she was, drink in hand and watching the floor, head nodding a little to the beat of the music.. He considered Amelia for a moment as he approached - the girl cleaned up pretty well, the clubwear she'd squeezed herself into flattering her figure, a far cry from the interesting yet dressed-down Amelia from the coffee shop. He wasn't going to do another bump-meet - for one thing repeating a trick twice in a row lacked elegance, for another spilling drinks on each other would only shorten the evening, and for a third Amelia might get a little suspicious. So instead, he opted for the direct approach. "Amelia?! Is that you?" he spoke just loudly enough to be heard as he came to rest up against the bar next to her, his tone both admiring and surprised as his golden eyes gave her a chivalrous but appreciative once-over before meeting hers again. "You look amazing. How've you been?"
  12. "...so it sounds like progress." Sable nodded slowly as she considered, then threw the handsome man across from her a wry smile. "You were supposed to charm one woman, not two." "I'm an overachiever." Ravi yawned, showing pink tongue and white teeth for a moment before covering his mouth. "'Scuse me." he apologised, reaching for his tea. Dressed in an off-white linen suit and leaf-green shirt, he was a picture of elegant dishevelment as he lounged in the chair comfortably, with the air of one who could sleep anywhere given half a chance. It was the following day, and in response to Sable's call for an update Ravi had once more taken the chauffeured car uptown to the NYX building. "Late night?" Sable's perfect eyebrow raised a little higher. The insouciant Englishman shrugged. It was a measure of his attractiveness that even with a five-o'clock shadow and slightly rumpled clothing he was just as enticing - less polished, but that just meant the raw animal attractiveness was closer to the surface. Or something. "Nine in the morning is no time for honest folk to be awake." he countered, flashing her a devastating smile. "It's a time for staying in bed and listening to the breathing of the person next to you, wouldn't you agree?" "I'm sure." Sable was not going to be drawn out on the matter of her sleeping habits, but couldn't resist a little curiousity. "So you took the friend home?" "Truthfully, I slept alone." Ravi stretched his spine out a little, wiggling to get comfortable in the chair, then resumed his boneless slouch. "Marilyn is lovely, but not the quarry I am pursuing, so I felt it best to save my energies. I text-flirted with her a little is all, and even that was light." "I'm surprised and impressed." The tone was not completely irony-riddled - Sable had been half-expecting that the incorrigible Brit would get distracted chasing an easy conquest. But she couldn't resist the urge to razz Fitzcoventry a little either. "I'm surprising and impressive." Ravi's gold-and-green eyes met hers over the rim of his teacup, flirtatious humor in his gaze. "So what is your next move?" Sable decided to steer the conversation back to business, and safely away from the subject of beds, sleeping with people, and Ravi's proclivities in that arena. He smiled a little wider, then abruptly stood and moved to the pin-board behind him, cup in hand. "A night-time encounter, next." he decided aloud, with a thoughtful tone as he stroked his chin. "Seems our Amelia has a few nightspots she likes to go and let her hair down at. I need one that's not too far from the mainstream that I'd have to be some hipster indie-scene fellow to know about it." He considered the board, then tapped a photograph. "This one. She seems to go there most Friday nights, usually with friends, and I won't need a soul patch and fake spectacles to get in." He came back and slouched into the chair again, saluted Sable with his cup, then took a drink. "Good. I'll write up the report so Miss D'Sombra knows you're making progress." Sable looked up from her laptop when there had been no acknowledgement after a minute, only to realise that Ravi FitzCoventry had closed his eyes, cradling his empty cup on his stomach as he slumped in the chair, and was to all intents and appearances asleep. Shaking her head in amused disbelief, and taking the opportunity for a safe lingering look at his face in repose (the way his long lashes brushed his cheeks was particularly noteworthy), the professional got back to typing up the report.
  13. About a block down the street outside the coffee shop, Sable sat behind the wheel of a sleek black (of course) sedan, her attitude one of calm patience underscored with perhaps a tinge of anxiety - though it was hard to tell as she sipped tea from a thermos and watched the front of Coffee Project. First contact in this sort of affair was touch and go - the wrong word, a random occurrence, and Ravi could come sloping back to the car with his tail between his legs or with only a partial success. She'd be lying if she said some part of her didn't want to see the arrogantly charming Englishman humbled, if only a little. He was entirely too full of himself where his admittedly charming effect on women was concerned. So when the door of the cafe opened and she saw the subject and another woman whom the files had identified as an acquaintance step out, her first thought was that Ravi FtizCoventry had struck out, blocked by the Sisterhood, and would shortly be headed back this... way... No, he'd stepped out after them, smiling and chatting to both young women as they gestured up the street, the friend blushing a pleased pink as she took Ravi's proffered arm, then looping her other hand through Amelia's arm as they headed away. Sable stared. And didn't miss Ravi's casual look back over his shoulder and flash of momentary smile in her direction before his eyes turned to his companions. Son of a bitch. she thought amusedly. Well, she might as well head back to the office. It appeared first contact had been, at least to a degree, a success. That was a relief. While Miss D'Sombra hadn't specified an urgent timescale, setbacks were undesirable... to say the least. = = = = = = "...so then she said 'But I was saving that for the party!'" Ravi finished a family anecdote to the accompaniment of Marilyn's shocked laughter and Amelia's chuckling. "No!" Marilyn gasped, still giggling. "Swear to god." Ravi placed a hand over his heart. "My cousin lives in her own world and only touches down in this one occasionally. You know how most girls go through the princesses and unicorns phase? Well, nobody told her to grow out of it. She's on her fourth husband already and she's only five years older than me." He shook his head ruefully, then grinned at the two girls. "You'd think that the eligible bachelors would swap notes and steer clear." They were drifting through a clothing store, chatting as they browsed, and Ravi had found he was enjoying himself. Marilyn was charming, and Amelia was too, possessed as she was of a dry wit and a willingness to employ it. He'd already picked up a clean shirt and jeans and was wearing them, the old ones tucked away for future cleaning in the store-issued bag, and was now following the two friends as they gossiped and caught up, now and then being drawn into the conversation but generally content to observe and comment.
  14. "That would be my preference." he quipped in an easygoing manner, reaching out and taking Amelia's hand in a gentle, firm and lingering shake, his eyes on hers throughout the exchange. "I do feel terrible, though. You ladies were going to catch up and have a peaceful afternoon and I come galumphing in and ruin it." He looked a little chagrined, the handsome line of his mouth turning down in a slight grimace as he let his fingers slide from Amelia's. "It wasn't your fault." Marilyn's expression was compassion personified as she put a hand on his arm again. "Perhaps." he allowed with a smile at her, then looked back at Amelia earnestly, his expression brightening in a hopeful smile as an idea occurred to him. "Tell you what... Why don't I come around shopping with you both? You can catch up, show me where New Yorkers shop and hang out, there's less of a fifth wheel vibe if we're all doing something... plus I need to pick up a new shirt now in addition to some other things." he added mischievously. "That way, everyone wins. What do you say?"
  15. "Wolston." Ravi smiled back. "At least, that was my family home." At her blank expression he went on. "It's a tiny village just outside the city of Coventry. But I've lived all over England, really. Boarding school in Harrow, summers in Dorset - when I wasn't visiting family in India - and yes, Glastonbury a time or two for festivals." he grinned. "India?" Marilyn's eyes went wider. Ravi chuckled, sipping his tea. "Mmhmm. My maternal grandmother is from Punjab, so I have a bunch of uncles, aunts and cousins. And because they're Sikh and family is very important, I've had to go and stay with all of them at least once." He leaned closer conspiratorially with a playful smile. "And the only Punjabi or Hindu phrases I know are bad words, so please don't ask." It wasn't strictly true: Ravi could get by asking directions or ordering a meal so long as the other party was cooperative... but as lies went it was a humorously little white one. "And what do you do?" Amelia asked, smiling at little at Marilyn's excited laughter. "Currently? I'm a recruitment consultant." Ravi shrugged offhandedly. "Confidential clientele who are looking for special individuals, that sort of thing. Headhunting, I suppose you could say." "Sounds fascinating." Marilyn would likely have answered that if Ravi had said he slung burgers at McDonalds, but at least this job actually did sound somewhat interesting... and mysterious. "What sort of special individuals?" "Well, I can't get into specifics, you understand." Ravi demurred, taking another sip of tea with evident relish as Marilyn and Amelia nodded. "God, they do a nice cuppa here. Anyway, it varies from client to client. I've spent a while building my brand now and I've not really had time to kick back and enjoy New York, so when a colleague recommended this place as a good spot to relax I said 'why not?'" He chuckled, a warm amused sound. "I must say, it's been a memorable first visit, but not one I regret at all."
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