Post Disaster Dessert Order

Magic Hollow 
She giggled a little for that. He was sooooooo good at making her feel important.

"Okay," she inhaled some, running her hand through her hair a little, her eyes searching around them in a sort of casual gaze as if she was looking for the waiter. It took a few seconds. And then! She leaned back in to speak. "Okay. There's a group of four to my... right. The four girls? The one with the blonde hair is being really quiet. She looks kind of left out. What if you made her start smiling and laughing?"

Where before she'd made someone laugh to make a scene, this was more to cheer the other one up. Kinda wholesome.

How sweet.

Truly, picking out one in a tight group was difficult, but Beauregard had decades of practice. He nodded, eventually glancing furtively in that direction. He filtered through them all, eventually honing in on her well enough that he was able to look away. His gaze fell somewhere in the middle distance near Rika, and he was listening as well, attempting to time it right.

If she simply burst into giggles at the wrong time, however charming she could be, it would result in confusion, perhaps awkwardness. So he paid close attention to the conversation, tapping his thumb softly against the table.

The blonde was anxious, but anxiety could be twisted into anticipation, then into cheerful release. Listening, waiting, timing, adjusting with a feather's touch.

And then came a punchline, and he would push her into it, to inspire a sense of lightheartedness rather than guffawing joy. It was masterwork, all of it. The small, delicate things always were, for all that others could not see the creative process that went into his efforts. Beauregard heard her laughter, shy but honest, and he glanced to Rika for her approval as their target began to take part in conversation.

Honestly, it was a hard call to decide who to look at. Rika wanted to both watch him work but also see the effect of his efforts. Choices! She angled in her seat just enough to sort of do both, trying not to look too obvious or weird about it.

It was gradual, slow, and she almost lost herself in the process of seeing the girl brighten up slowly. And when she finally laughed, Rika looked back at him and fell into smiles herself, as if he was summoning them in her. "How does it feel when you do something like that?" she asked.

Rika would be so happy if she could just make other people happy all the time.

Beauregard did not require her approval, but he was not so far removed that it wasn't a lovely feeling. He smiled, pondering her question.

"It can feel a bit old hat after all these years. But there are moments when it can be quite exquisite," he said. "At times it takes attempting it with someone else present to remind myself of the little things."

Rika was good company for practicing his abilities, if mostly because she was as keenly interested as he could expect of anyone.

Aww. That was nice, feeling like she could help remind him there was wonder to be found in it all. Rika sipped down as she listened, feeling a pleasant buzz. Which meant she could maybe order another drink.

"Well I am happy to help," she grinned. Rika reached for the menu. "What's an emotion people don't normally think about that you like to do?"

That was possibly not well worded.

He understood her wording well enough and hummed in thought.

"I don't know that I like it more than anything else, but eliciting surprise it even awe can be very entertaining."

Beauregard fell into a very honest smile, then, obviously amused by something.

"I could leave you in awe of whatever it is you order next, if you'd like to see it. Briefly."

Ahhhh, he would do it to her? Rika looked up with a bright mischief. "Yes!" she agreed immediately, knowing there was no possible way he would ever use this against her in a way she wouldn't like. Trust and all that.

"Okay, I'm gonna doooo the chocolate martini." Honestly, who wouldn't! Rika was ready to order, and she'd look to him to flag down the waiter because chivalry and all that was his thing.


Beauregard would move the empty drinks to a neutral, convenient place for them to be swept away, lest it become clearer than necessary that she was drinking and he was watching.

Truly, it was her doing. She had every bit of control over her own intoxication, and he was happy to see her taking her time for once.

The waiter would be summoned, a drink ordered for her, and then they were given the time to wait. Whatever natural anticipation she naturally felt, he sought to hold it to a greater bar.

"I do miss chocolate," he mused idly. "At least I think I do. It certainly smells lovely."

So did Rika, though he was wise enough not to utter that at a dinner table or elsewhere.

Rika really did want that last drink. It was all probably something like nine thousand calories but whatever, she'd been needing this. It was all she could do not to shake her leg in wait. Important to be a laaadyyyyy.

"It smells lovely and it tastes lovely! I couldn't ever give it up," she sighed, leaning back. Maybe rudely, she glanced behind her, just to see if maybe it was ready already, before looking back at him.

"What if it was possible to add some kind of... food flavoring to my neck or something?"

Would it work for him?

It was a good thing that Beauregard could not possibly have been drinking anything or he might have choked. Some mental image of Rika desperately slathering caramel sauce on her neck, hoping to be more appealing. Anything for a vampire.

"Anything that isn't that very specific drink I favor tastes unpleasant, at best."

Food flavoring. To her neck. Oh, Rika.

A gentle denial but still a denial. Rika pouted.

"I trieeed," she decided. Unable to contain herself, she reached for the neglected water, seeking to busy her mouth some. "What about stuff like... toothpaste and floss. That also tastes bad?"

He nodded.

"Dreadful. I try to find the ones with the strongest scent because I can nearly convince myself it's mint and ash."

Absurd, of course, but true. He took a moment away from his lamenting to glance up and see one chocolate martini drawing near, and quite delicately, he sought to reach a hand out to rest on hers.

"Rika," he said softly, and he would competently take all the curiosity and anticipation she held to turn it into the sort of awe likely reserved for something close to a religious experience as the drink was placed on their table.

There was some chance she would make a scene, but it was worth it.

Dreadful. Lovely and dreadful. Where did this guy get his talking license, ha. She giggled a little, all but wiggling in her seat. Mint and ash sounded d r e a d f u l.

And then! She gave a slight start as he moved his hand over hers, and hoo boy Rika you're a damn fool but she was all kinds of smitten. AND then, and THEN, TheRe wAS tHe MArTInI.

Her eyes bugged and she took in a deep gasp, mouth hanging open, one hand going to her cheek. "Oh my god," she breathed out in the barest sound, "it's so — it looks so—"

And then her eyes started watering because it was just. So beautiful.

The waiter would linger for a moment, visibly befuddled by this response, but Beauregard would nod him away.

Then he turned his attention back to Rika, who truly he could nearly kill with sheer awe and wonder over a chocolate martini in a damp glass.

"One might even venture to call it awe inspiring," he said softly, but if she looked to him at any point, a smirk was snaking onto his face.

Beauregard wouldn't let it last too terribly long, but he would ease away from it gently so as not to leave her entirely underwhelmed.

Awe inspiring. A glimmer of recognition that he'd done this; Rika found the change so natural within her that she'd nearly forgotten it was supposed to be his doing to begin with.

She laughed, the kind of delighted laugh that had her lean a little to her side briefly as she moved to cover her mouth with her hands. "Oh my god," she repeated. "That's amazing — I didn't even feel anything different!"

He smiled in return, less a smirk now for her realization.

"It is a good trick," he said modestly. Beauregard had used it a thousand thousand times for a thousand thousand reasons. He never grew tired of it, though it was always welcome for it to be freshly appreciated.

"Some efforts are subtler than others, but you are an easy subject."

Spoken playfully, and he peered to her drink, taking in the sugary cocktail that had been the subject of her awe. Had that been what he'd ordered their first time here? He truthfully couldn't remember now.

(No it wasn't, mister salted caramel.)

"Mean," she giggled, and started on her third dessertini with the knowledge that she kind of had the metabolism but three was pretty overdoing it, girl.


"Does anyone ever catch you doing it?"

Beauregard was, for once, neglecting to note her caloric intake, if primarily because he was focused on himself and feeling very interesting.

To her question, he nodded, leaning back a bit comfortably.

"From time to time. Psychics or vampires are most inclined to figure it out. Others simply cannot even fathom it as an option."

She wondered if that made them just extra smart or if she was just kinda dumb. Rika didn't wanna be dumb.

But it seemed so natural! He was very good at it.

"Has it ever failed to work at all?"

"Many times," he said. "You have to recall that I have been at this for decades and decades. It is very natural for me, but in the beginning, it often simply failed to produce anything at all. Or I would accidentally target the wrong person, or..."

Beauregard peered off in the way one did before listing off a number of things from memory, counting off on his fingers.

"Trigger the wrong feeling. Inspire a feeling too abruptly, too faintly. At times I couldn't stop, much like your invisibility. Then there were the months, years even when I often could not discern my own emotions from someone else's. It was a messy learning process, simply far enough removed now that I can nearly pretend it didn't happen."

Beau talked and talked and talked and that was great, for her, because Rika could sip and hum thoughtfully and listen. She loved listening to him go on. It was a glimpse into a life she'd never have.

She'd giggle at the very end, feeling kind of floaty from all this sugar and vodka in a good way. There was a slight slowdown to her talking, too. "I guess thassa cool part about living forever. Eventually you can just... ignore all the times that you weren't. At the top of your game."

But again, it wasn't something she wanted.

A deep inhale. She started to reach for the menu again, and then stopped her hand.

"I. Am. Full."

Mostly to convince herself, because she was.

He could hear that slur, and perhaps guiltily, it was enough to ease him into something more predatory. Beauregard took a breath, and everything was chocolate and the promise of blood.

As she turned herself away from the menu, he chuckled. The last thing he needed was for her to sicken herself on chocolate cocktails.

"Now you know my suffering when I have had my dinner and you are offering me seconds or thirds," he teased. "Is there something you'd like to-go, or should I get our check?"

Suffering! "I don't everrrrr wanna make you suffer," she declared in a mewl. She thought about sitting in his lap, but he was talking about getting a check. Oh, no. They were outside.

Rika shook her head noooo. "We should... go somewhere. Else. Because you're hungry now," she grinned, teasing!

Fading, this one. Caught red handed in his own hunger, he prodded at his fangs with the tip of his tongue (hidden behind his lips, of course, because he wasn't some cartoon villain).

"Where is it we should go, Rika Henriikka?" he asked, glancing away from her to make meaningful eye contact with the waiter before lifting one hand to draw some invisible scribble in the air.

Check, please, and promptly.

"Hoommme," she insisted. But whose home? Probably hers. But it was far!

"Or. Or we could. Go to a...nother place. Closer."

She stopped herself from saying hotel because it would be really nice if he jumped to that conclusion himself and she didn't have toooooo.

Beauregard did not know another place closer. He waited somewhat impatiently for the check, taking out his wallet and deciding he could save time by paying in cash. (Which he had a small abundance of, thanks to the renaissance fair.)

"What closer place are you thinking of?" he asked, offering a polite smile of thanks as the waiter approached, though Beauregard could sense some... wariness from the man. Likely for the best they were taking their exit relatively soon.

He knew how it looked, of course, this particular arrangement. But it was just that: an arrangement, an exchange. Nothing happened here that he certainly didn't have permission to do.

Rika couldn't sense anything from the waiter and that was for the best! She was busy taking a little inhale and wondering, why wasn't he deciding on the place??

"Like a. Like when we stayed at the casino. But closer here."


"Unless you wanna go home."

Ah. A hotel.

Beauregard found very little pleasure in even a very lovely hotel room. They were shared spaces, cleaned only as meticulously as a glance over the room required. Privacy was limited, it took time to check in, and it also cost money for the entire effort.

Folding cash into the booklet with the check, he looked to her with a challenge.

"Are you telling me you have forgotten how to hold this precise potency of alcohol long enough for me to escort you home, young lady?"

He rose from the table and would offer her an arm if she cared for it, having absolutely no plan to end up in a damn hotel.

He said like ten million words. Somewhere, the fact that he'd asked if she'd forgotten to do the thing got lost and she understood as him just asking her to do the thing.

"Yes," she answered as she took his hand, a misplaced sense of laser focus like she was accepting a mission.

But her eyes went pink just then, too.

Beauregard could sift through emotions, but he could not read thoughts (or perhaps lack thereof).

She gave an affirmative answer that he took to mean quite the opposite. He would find out one way or another, he supposed.

It wouldn't be a long walk to the car, and he was mindful not let let her trip over any curb along the way. He opened the door for her, closed it carefully, buckled himself in and started the car he did not like.

Still, his mood was good, and he glanced to Rika as he turned the key.

"Did you have dinner before I bought you three glasses of chocolate?" he asked in perhaps the same tone he might ask Annabel if she'd had dinner before he gave her a baked vegetable cupcake. With some mischief!

Only one glass was chocolate, technically! She thought? Maybe. It felt like not the right thing to focus on, so whatever.

"I diiiiid," she nodded, preening herself and smoothing out her skirt. "I'm very, very, very behaved."

What a word! Behaved.

"Exceptionally well behaved."

What a girlish answer. He pondered for a moment, considering her drunken state, then decided to take advantage of it as he could.

"Have you started working on your costume for the renaissance fair?"

Working on it?!

"Isssalreadyyy made."

Duh, Beau. Duh. She grinned happily, and felt like she really needed a stretch so she stretched her arms up and over behind her headrest.

"Gonna winnnn."

She stretched like a cat and he glanced to her briefly.

"Oh? What is it, again? The costume."




Unlinking her hands and bringing them back to her lap.

"Not tell!"

Ah. Cleverer than he'd hoped.

"Too smart for my tricks," he said with a sigh of defeat.

Beauregard would let quiet fall, save for some soft music trickling through the car speakers (which were not at good as the ones in his preferred vehicle).

He trusted her to find conversation if she wanted it.

Awww Beau. So sigh-y.

The problem with having to drive back to Larkspur was that it was something like twenty five solid minutes and that was without traffic.

That was time Rika spent trying to hold her intoxication level in bursts of increase. It made for riveting moments of her feeling giggly, telling him this or that story, such as of her chickens or some interactions from work; other times she fell quiet or cuddly. Once, and only once, she'd felt kind of... unwell. Mostly at her head. But she managed to change gears and work that down.

"I can't... see," she murmured quietly, a few minutes from home. "Gonna have to carry me."

Beauregard was a happy enough participant in conversation, if primarily as a listener. He felt some desire to meet these chickens of hers but had a sense they would disappoint in terms of personality.

She seemed to fade in and out, and was perhaps fading back in as she made her comment.

"I think you just want to be carried," he challenged. "Can you unlock a door while held? I cannot unlock a door while holding someone, I'm afraid."

Perhaps he could with some effort, but he wasn't necessarily keen to put that much in.

Well, yes, but no, also. "Prob'ly not if I can't... mm. See," she decided, pausing because a something threatened in her chest. But false alarm.

Rika felt blindly for her bag, and then when she'd snaked her hand in, her keys.

"I can try though!"

It was important to be upbeat with a guy who could sense feelings!

Beauregard was uncertain that she was actually some variety of blinded until her hand wandered loosely for her bag. A slight frown appeared on his face as he glanced to her.

"I thought you were teasing. Are you actually having trouble seeing?"

Was she simply wildly drunk or suffering some side effect?

She nodded slowly, hesitant as if she might get in trouble. Rika thought she'd told him the consequence of playing with intoxication for too long, but.

Maybe she hadn't. Or maybe he hadn't made the connection. Either way, help would be needed.

"You could... lead me. To the door. And I could open it?" she offered. Hopefully to the effect of softening his reaction!

Good heavens. She could have eased off along the way. Beauregard frowned, feeling responsible for this when truly it wasn't his fault she didn't know her limits. He'd received the sorts of text messages that implied she had plenty of practice.

"I will manage the door," he said.

After a few seconds, he was quieter, perhaps even apologetic.

"I didn't mean for you to push yourself to blindness. I'd never want you to..."

A hand wave she apparently wouldn't see.

"Hurt yourself for my... for me."

"S'okay," she reassured, bringing a smile back to her face, driven to make it clear that it was her fault and not his.

"I'm still, just. Figring it out. How long I can do it. Din't even know I could do it at all, before our dinner dates."


Whenever he was ready to help her, she'd be so good and careful.

He nodded, which she could not see, and pulled into the driveway, which she could not see but would likely feel.

"I suppose I am proper company for you to test around. It seems dangerous to play with that particular ability alone."

He knew she did it anyway, of course. Beauregard would instruct her keys from her, meet her at her side of the car, and if she was not dreadfully difficult about it, seek to sweep her up like some blind bride.

"I will need one arm free to unlock the door. Holding tight, yes?" he asked, tapping a bit with the arm holding her upper body to indicate.

So. Good. And. Careful. Beau.

Arms around him as he lifted her into the air, Rika hugged to him in a squeeze. Honestly she could probably just stop but what was the fun in that?! He was so good at taking care of her and he was so so strong.

"So tight," she murmured, face nestled at his chest and left speaking up against his collar.

Imagine being so cared for. She felt all warm and fuzzy for all she couldn't see him.

Beauregard was not immune to humanity. There was a charm in carrying her, in feeling her tucked against his chest. It appealed to a sense of classic masculinity.

But he was also hungry, and as he managed to fumble the door open, that was freshly at the forefront of his brain.

It was a good thing that he liked her quite a lot, or he might have been tempted into a pushiness about it all.

"To the couch?" he asked, feeling fangs emerge again as he closed the door by backing into it a bit.

"Couch," she nodded, still not ready to brave a bed with him again. He seemed to prefer couches anyway.

"Jus' don't drop meee."

She squeezed a little more, insistent.

To the couch it was. She would feel him pause briefly to step out of his shoes, then lead the way there, thankful his arms could not tire physically of carrying her.

"I would never," he assured her, adjusting to hold her with both arms again before promptly leaning forward sharply enough to likely frighten her.

"Unless I slipped!"

She would not fall, held securely in his arms, but he did hope to startle her. Perhaps she'd turn invisible!

She would, Beauregard Bertrand. With a gasp and a yelp and a clinging to him, she would go invisible. And she couldn't see anyway, so. >:|

But more than invisible, any sound she could make and any scent she bore was swept away into the void of lost senses. All that he'd feel of her was the warmth of her body in his arms.

Oh goodness gracious, did he hate that. He gave a choked kind of laugh and would flash negation for the half second necessary to bring her back, distraught by the view of some invisible force pressed against his body, indenting his skin and clothing.

Deeply upsetting, but he was forgiving enough knowing he'd triggered it.

"There you are! Thought I dropped you."

Playful for someone increasingly all teeth, and if she didn't protest, he would settle them onto the couch.

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