Science Is King

Science dictates lives: what you do, where you live, who you marry. It takes care of you, covers your bills, keeps you healthy, and all it asks in return is that you participate in a few experiments. Ridgeway has always been a control group, left mostly alone, but the Department of Science has been moving in, and everything is about to change.

Single
04 M
03 F
Teenagers
04 M
05 F
Partnered
54 M
54 F
Excellent
10 M
17 F
High
24 M
21 F
Neutral
20 M
20 F
Low
05 M
05 F
Poor
01 M
00 F



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 Black smoke rising, Maddox/Morgan
Maddox Alexander
 Posted: Jun 10 2018, 06:28 PM
QUOTE

Member

Age // 29

Posts // 22

Merit // High

Alias // Zyqoa

Occupation // Pediatric nurse

Partner // Morgan Stirling

Mini Quote

Listen, smile, agree, then do whatever the fuck you were gonna do anyway

GMT+1 + She/her


It had been years since his first wife ran off, so Maddox was well aware that it wouldn't be long before another envelope found its way to his doorstep. Yet it somehow still surprised him when it finally happened. He had no idea what to expect - heck, he didn't even know what he was hoping for - but the pretty, innocent face that was looking back at him from the portrait in the file was definitely another surprise. Lexi's mother had been sort of similar to himself. Rough around the edges, with a slightly intimidating look. Someone you didn't want to run into in a dark alley in the middle of the night. This woman, Morgan Stirling, she looked like anything but that. She looked sweet, and soft, and like the least dangerous creature on the planet. While he was perfectly fine with that being the case, he also knew that looks could be deceiving. So he was trying not to make up his mind beforehand, trying to keep it open and free of preconceived notions before meeting her for the first time.

He hadn't been entirely sure what to suggest for their first meeting. He didn't want it to feel stiff and official, so he had quickly decided to strike out restaurants. No, he wanted something relaxed, to give them a chance to get to know each other in a comfortable environment. It would probably have to be public too, he reasoned, or she might feel like he was putting pressure on her already. That was not an impression he wanted to make, not at all. So what fulfilled all of his criteria? Well, Acewood Park seemed like a decent choice. It was in his neighborhood so he already knew it fairly well, and it could be a good environment for the two of them to breach the first walls. So that's what he suggested, and Morgan made no objections.

He was early though. He had a tendency to do that. He got excited or nervous and couldn't wait at home for the time to pass, so he left prematurely. And arrived prematurely. So instead of having to wait at home where nobody could see him fidget, he was now planted on a bench in full view of anybody walking by. And he was trying very hard to look relaxed, but he wasn't sure how good of a job he was doing. Hopefully he didn't look too weird or awkward.

Just to keep his hands occupied he pulled out the hair tie that was keeping his hair in check, and ran his fingers through the blonde locks. He could never quite decide if her preferred his hair up or down. At work it was always up, tied away from his face so it didn't get in the way, but on his own time he would constantly go back and forth. Sometimes it was even braided, but that was for Lexi's sake. The little girl loved to play with his hair, so if they were watching a movie together or if he was doing something for himself and she was demanding attention, he would simply get on the floor in front of her and let her play around with the long blonde hair. Ages could pass that way - she was entertained and he had gotten used to ignoring the chaos on top of his head, so it didn't bother him even if he was reading a scientific article for work.

Now though, he once again pulled the hair back and tied it up with the loose hair tie, hoping that Morgan would show up soon so he'd have something else to occupy his mind with.

Morgan Stirling
Outfit
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Morgan Alexander
 Posted: Jun 10 2018, 08:45 PM
QUOTE

Member

Age // 24

Posts // 15

Merit // High

Alias // Kat

Occupation // Librarian

Partner // Maddox Alexander

Mini Quote

Falling feels like flying, until you hit the ground.

Central + She, her, etc.


Honestly, she should've seen this coming.

When her last exam had shown that the small amount of damage and scar tissue on her womb hadn't rendered her infertile, meaning that there was no reason she couldn't conceive again, Morgan had known it was only a matter of time until they partnered her again. She just hadn't expected it to happen less than two weeks after her return to Ridgeway. Especially not with all the rumors that were flying around. The quiet girl had come home from her first partnership with no spouse, and no children.

The favorite conspiracy theory seemed to be that she'd actually shot herself and killed her husband, then framed him for it, so she could be with someone else. Just thinking of that as she wandered into the park made her breathe a snort. People were so ridiculous sometimes. But mulling over the reasons why a few people looked at her askance as they passed was better than freaking out over meeting her new future husband.

Of course, she'd done enough of that earlier. She'd changed three times, cried on her kitchen floor, thrown a few things, changed again, and finally made herself leave her apartment. Now she was questioning her choice of shorts, plain black sandals, and simple green t-shirt.. mostly because she had come to a stop and was now staring at the man sitting on the park bench. Maddox Alexander. She'd seen the photo included in the envelope, of course, but that had hardly prepared her for what an intimidating figure he was in person, with all those tattoos.

Chewing on her lip, Morgan shuffled her feet and pulled the end of her braid over her left shoulder, playing with the tuft of mahogany at the end as she decided how to try and approach him. After a few moments of waffling, she took hesitant steps closer, her dark brown eyes watching him carefully.. and once she was close enough, she spoke, attempting a very small, very anxious smile.

"Um.. Mister Alexander? Hi. Hello. I'm Morgan."
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Maddox Alexander
 Posted: Jun 11 2018, 03:37 PM
QUOTE

Member

Age // 29

Posts // 22

Merit // High

Alias // Zyqoa

Occupation // Pediatric nurse

Partner // Morgan Stirling

Mini Quote

Listen, smile, agree, then do whatever the fuck you were gonna do anyway

GMT+1 + She/her


Maddox had been trying very hard not to look around the park every ten second, he didn't want to look like he was completely out of his mind, so he hadn't noticed when Morgan arrived. In fact he didn't realize she was there until she spoke, but the sound of a voice saying his name got him to raise his head, and his eyes immediately fell on her. And his heart lunged up into his throat. He recognized her from her picture, of course, but she was even prettier in person. However she was also tiny. Like, teeny tiny. She couldn't be much more than five feet tall. Knowing full well that he was intimidating even to average-height men, he could only imagine how she felt right now.

Shit, he really had to be careful not to freak her out. He didn't want her running for the hills already at their first meeting.

"Please, just call me Maddox. And hi", he put on his very best kind, benevolent smile, the one he always wore when dealing with nervous parents at work. For a short moment he debated with himself if he should stand up to greet her. It seemed like the polite thing to, but then again towering over her was maybe not the way to go. In the end, though, polite won, so he got up from the bench and reached out a hand for her to shake. "It's really nice to meet you, Morgan"

Before getting his file, Maddox hadn't known a single thing about the woman standing in front of him. He hadn't even heard her name before. But before meeting her he had asked some of his colleagues if they knew her, just casually while chatting anyway, and some of them were aware of who she was. They'd told him how she had only recently returned, and even filled him in on some of the rumors they'd heard in the pub of wherever people aired that kind of craziness. Maddox didn't buy much of that, though. He knew better than most how people would blow things out of proportion, exaggerate wildly just to seem momentarily interesting to the other gossips. He wasn't about to judge Morgan based on their opinions, just as he hoped she wouldn't do to him. Because if she wanted to, he was absolutely sure she could dig up plenty of crazy theories on what had happened to Elvira, his first wife. He clearly remembered how some people had him under suspicion for murdering her back in the day, after she left, and making up the whole running away story to cover his tracks. It didn't bother him that much that people made up wild stories about him, not unless it affected the people around him. Like his siblings, or Lexi. He didn't want them to be judged because people had nothing better to do than let their imagination run wild. And now he'd be adding Morgan to that list. He would never forgive himself if her life suffered damage because she'd been partnered to him.

Morgan Stirling
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Morgan Alexander
 Posted: Jun 11 2018, 06:46 PM
QUOTE

Member

Age // 24

Posts // 15

Merit // High

Alias // Kat

Occupation // Librarian

Partner // Maddox Alexander

Mini Quote

Falling feels like flying, until you hit the ground.

Central + She, her, etc.


"Right. Maddox. Yes. Sorry. That's just habit for me, and I didn't want to risk offending you by being so familiar right off, and, uh, yeah."

Realizing that she was babbling, Morgan cut herself off, and was mortified to realize that her cheeks were steadily turning a rather vivid shade of pink. She'd always been rather socially awkward, especially when she was meeting new people, and knowing that she was going to be marrying this new person just made her more anxious. That he was being so nice made her feel a lot better, and at least he didn't sound as intimidating as he looked.

And then he stood up.

"Ohmygosh you're so tall."

The words spilled out of her before she could stop them, her eyes so wide that they seemed to take up half her face. Morgan wasn't exactly a great judge of height or distance or anything like that, but he had to be at least a foot taller than her. With something in her mental voice akin to panic, she mused that he could pick her up under his arm like a football without any problem at all. He could probably even score a touchdown without too much difficulty.

Biting back a slightly hysterical giggle, she reached out and put her hand in his, giving it a firm shake. Well, firm for her. Her hand was just as small and dainty as the rest of her, it probably felt like holding a wisp of air to this tattooed giant of a man.

"I'm sorry. That was rude. I just.. I didn't.. your file. It didn't say you were.. tall. Not that there's anything wrong with that, it just took me by surprise."

And she was babbling again. She stopped herself so quickly this time that her teeth actually clicked together. Lucky she didn't chip a tooth. Taking a deep breath, she forced herself to smile.

"It's nice to meet you, too."

..She blanked. What the hell was she supposed to say now?!

Maddox Alexander
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Maddox Alexander
 Posted: Jun 11 2018, 07:25 PM
QUOTE

Member

Age // 29

Posts // 22

Merit // High

Alias // Zyqoa

Occupation // Pediatric nurse

Partner // Morgan Stirling

Mini Quote

Listen, smile, agree, then do whatever the fuck you were gonna do anyway

GMT+1 + She/her


"You don't have to apologize. I get it. Better safe than sorry, right? I just figure we might as well go with our first names right away, or who knows - maybe you'd end up calling me Mr. Alexander for the rest of our lives", a little light joking, maybe that was the way to show her that there was nothing to worry about. That she had no reason to be nervous or embarrassed, which was how he interpreted her blushing. He followed the remark up with a soft laugh, superficial but not disingenuous. When he laughed properly it was a significantly deeper sound, almost like a rumble emitting from his chest, and that was definitely not something he wanted to embark on right now.

The moment he stood up he felt as if he had made a huge mistake. He was used to looking down at people, to feeling like a giant in a crowd, and typically that didn't bother him. But the way Morgan's eyes widened, the fact that she couldn't hold her tongue... Suddenly he felt very self conscious. He shook her hand, which felt way too small in his, but then he didn't know what to do with his hands. In any other situation he would probably have crossed his arms, but that felt too harsh now. It could come off defensive, or even aggressive. Putting them in the pockets of his jeans didn't seem like a great option either. Again that had a touch of defensiveness, or possibly boredom. All things he did not want to convey. Damn, body language was hard.

"Yeah... I am, aren't I?", a little befuddled he reached back and scratched his neck with one hand while the other arm just hung down his side as he still hadn't figured out what to do with it. A sort of sheepish smile took over his face, and he bit the inside of his cheek. It was a bad habit but he couldn't help it. He just hoped it wasn't too obvious.

"I-uhm... I'm gonna sit back down?", the phrase came out as some sort of freakish hybrid between a statement and a question, bearing resemblances to both while not really being either. While talking he pointed to the bench he had just stood up from, but he hesitated for a moment before actually moving. He didn't know if she wanted to sit, or stand, or walk, or... Well, those were really the options, weren't they? Either way, he didn't know. But to him sitting seemed like the best option. It would put them more at level with each other. He'd feel less like a giant, and maybe she wouldn't start to wonder if he could crumble her up and use her for basketball.

So eventually he did sit, sort of nodding once he did. He wasn't even sure why. But he realized there was another bonus to sitting - he could put his hands on his legs, palms against his thighs, and it didn't seem too weird or awkward. Great. That was one problem solved.

Morgan Stirling
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Morgan Alexander
 Posted: Jun 11 2018, 09:19 PM
QUOTE

Member

Age // 24

Posts // 15

Merit // High

Alias // Kat

Occupation // Librarian

Partner // Maddox Alexander

Mini Quote

Falling feels like flying, until you hit the ground.

Central + She, her, etc.


The notion of calling him 'Mister Alexander' for the entirety of their marriage, which would indeed mean the remainder of their lives, barring any unpleasant circumstances, seemed to be thoroughly amusing to her. It brought a genuine smile to her face, one that warmed her eyes, and she even chuckled softly.

Before she could share why she found that so funny, however, she realized that she'd done what she usually did. That being making an already awkward situation so much more so. It was painful, to see this big tattooed man seeming so unsure of himself. Maybe even self-conscious. All because she kept talking about how tall he was.

A chagrined expression filled her features, then, as Morgan watched him sit down. She had to salvage this, somehow. Social situations were very much not her forte, but when in doubt.. make jokes, right? That was what her dad always used to tell her, anyway.

"I mean, you're not that tall. You know everyone seems that way to us short people."

She paired the comment with a crooked smile, her shoulders rolling in a small shrug. She was pretty short, after all, standing only two inches above five feet. They probably made a funny picture: Him, tall and inked and rugged. Her, short and pale and girly. God, she couldn't wait to see pictures of the two of them together. They were going to be hilarious.

When Maddox sat down again, Morgan pondered. Usually, she was a very methodical person. She liked to think things through and be logical. But sometimes, when the feeling was particularly strong, she followed her instincts. Impulsive decisions had usually turned out well for her. She was hoping they would this time, too. So it was that she casually moved to perch on the bench beside him. Turned with her side pressed to the back of the bench, facing him, she tucked one leg up against her chest with her arms wrapped around it, and the other curled on the seat.

"It probably says a lot about me that my first thought was, 'That would be so very Jane Austen, we should definitely do that.' But I think I prefer Maddox to Mister Alexander. I'm awkward enough as it is, I should probably avoid things that exacerbate it, like formal address. Especially with my own.. husband."

She faltered a bit over that designation, but not out of any dislike for it. There was a look on her face, thoughtful and somewhat curious, like she was reacquainting herself with a flavor of ice cream she hadn't tasted in a long time, trying to see if she disliked it now. But she wasn't completely against the idea. He was so very unlike her prior partner, despite the similarity in hair color, and that already spoke volumes in Maddox Alexander's favor.


Maddox Alexander
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Maddox Alexander
 Posted: Jun 12 2018, 06:44 PM
QUOTE

Member

Age // 29

Posts // 22

Merit // High

Alias // Zyqoa

Occupation // Pediatric nurse

Partner // Morgan Stirling

Mini Quote

Listen, smile, agree, then do whatever the fuck you were gonna do anyway

GMT+1 + She/her


Her chuckle eased him up a little, confirming as it did his thought that joking was the way to go. Truthfully he was somewhat relieved that that had worked. Firstly it would hopefully make their meeting less awkward, and secondly he was happy to see that his wife-to-be had a sense of humor. If she had been gravely serious all the time, the type to never crack a smile, then their lives together would probably be an uphill battle. But so far she came off very delightful. He was certainly positive.

"Short or not, you're probably justified in this one", the sheepish smile that had dominated his features seceded to make room for one that was more relaxed, brought on by amusement and kindness rather than awkward self consciousness. He turned a little on the bench to be facing her, yanked one leg up and resting it partly on the bench itself and partly with the ankle on his other leg. He leaned heavy against the backrest upon which he rested his arm.

"Well, if you ever feel a craving for a Jane Austen moment you'll always have that option to fall back on." She was quite cute, there was no denying that. Adorable, even, in her admittance to her own awkwardness - like she was embracing it, wearing it with pride. He could definitely appreciate that. He wasn't exactly immune to awkward himself, as their encounter had already proven, but he had never considered it a character flaw of any sort. In fact he'd always found it easier to trust a person who was a little awkward, who didn't always know exactly what to say. Too smooth made him uncomfortable, worry that they had ulterior motives, or that they'd be able to manipulate him without him ever catching on. He'd take a few awkward silences or sudden embarrassing outbursts over that any day.

One thing that did concern him ever the slightest was Morgan's hesitation before saying the word husband. He completely understood if she was just testing it out, getting used to it. It would certainly take a little getting used to for him as well, to think of this dainty young woman as his wife. But in the back of his head a thought was gnawing. A fear that she was hesitating because she took issue with it, because she couldn't imagine living with him. Because he was all wrong. For all he knew he could be. They could be totally wrong for each other, and perhaps she already knew. But he decided to push the thought aside - or at least make a decent effort to do so. It wasn't like worrying would make it better anyway.

"So, you're a librarian, right?", it was made to sound like a question, but it really wasn't. He knew she was. He had read her file from beginning to end at least a dozen times, if not two, and every bit of information in the thing was well memorized. But phrasing it like a question just seemed more natural. And perhaps less stalkery. After all he didn't necessarily want her to know how thoroughly he'd been scanning her file. That could be weird. "At the public library?"

Morgan Stirling
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Morgan Alexander
 Posted: Jun 12 2018, 09:00 PM
QUOTE

Member

Age // 24

Posts // 15

Merit // High

Alias // Kat

Occupation // Librarian

Partner // Maddox Alexander

Mini Quote

Falling feels like flying, until you hit the ground.

Central + She, her, etc.


"Challenge accepted."

There was a nearly playful tilt to her lips, and her eyes gleamed with mirth as she made this statement. Thank goodness the man had a sense of humor! Well, one that didn't center around toilet humor and crass innuendo. She would need to sound out the rest of his interests in time, but the fear she'd had that he would be just like her former partner were slowly fading. He hardly seemed like the gun-loving man who preferred to spend his free time hunting, fishing, and drinking.

She was drawn from her consideration of this by his questions that weren't really questions. Morgan knew quite well that Maddox knew what she did -- he'd gotten the same information on her that she had on him, after all. But he was trying to get to know her, and seem interested, and that said a lot. And so, she nodded.

"Yes. And you're a pediatric nurse, at the hospital, right?"

She hesitated slightly, remembering what else the envelope had contained. Of course, the immediate thing that came to mind was his daughter. The picture included of her had been quite precious, an adorable little girl with a beaming grin. Just thinking of that happy little face was more than enough to make a smile bloom on Morgan's features.

"Your daughter is the cutest thing, by the way."

That drove home a sudden realization that she hadn't really allowed to enter her mind before: That little girl was going to be her daughter, too, if only legally. And suddenly, Morgan was visibly anxious, biting her lower lip. Was she cut out to help take care of a child? Or worse, what if she would just get in the way and screw up their dynamic? Would she feel like a stranger, unwanted and intruding in their lives? What if little Alexis hated her?

It took her a few moments to steer her mind away from these panic-inducing thoughts, and she self-consciously reached up to scratch at her shoulder, even though it didn't itch. She really needed to stop doing that to herself. But she had to know one thing, at least, and her eyes met Maddox's as she hesitantly voiced a question.

"Um.. does she know yet..?"

Maddox Alexander
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Maddox Alexander
 Posted: Jun 14 2018, 03:33 PM
QUOTE

Member

Age // 29

Posts // 22

Merit // High

Alias // Zyqoa

Occupation // Pediatric nurse

Partner // Morgan Stirling

Mini Quote

Listen, smile, agree, then do whatever the fuck you were gonna do anyway

GMT+1 + She/her


Her smile appeared genuine, and if nothing else it was certainly contagious, and he sat a little lighter in his seat. She didn't seem to completely hate spending time with him, at least not yet, and that was like a stone falling from his heart. As far as he could tell, she was going into this with a positive attitude, and that was all he would even consider to ask of her. But if she had that, then he had faith that they could find common ground.

"I am", he replied with a little nod, not really sure what to say next. He could always talk about his work, that was an out in an awkward situation, but he wasn't too eager to talk about himself. Rather, he wanted to get her talking so he could find out what kind of a woman he had on his hands. Unfortunately he didn't quite know how to do that. For a moment there he longed for the simplicity of the pediatric unit. He never had to worry about how to get a kid talking, it was just a matter of asking them their favorite color or cartoon character, but Maddox couldn't imagine those questions would fare well here. Or at the very least they'd seem odd.

He was pulled out of his line of thought when Morgan spoke again, bringing up Alexis. If there was one thing in this world he was always happy to talk about, it was his daughter. She was the apple of his eye, basically the center of his universe. However he hadn't wanted to bring her up himself, not already. He was worried that the child would be a little much for his fiancee to handle, that she would be concerned about becoming a mother someone else's child. And he couldn't blame her if that was the case. He'd be uneasy himself if he had to move into the home of an established family the way Morgan was about to in a little less than a month. And it was quickly clear from the look on her face that she was in fact somewhat nervous about that. So that would make his primary objective to put her at ease.

"I haven't told her about you yet, no", he admitted, but quickly continued before she would start thinking that it was because he didn't want his daughter to know. "To be completely honest I wanted a chance to meet you myself first. Lexi is wonderful, but she's domineering. She would want to come along, take up all the space, and I probably wouldn't get a word in edgewise." His eyes immediately got softer at the mention of his daughter, giving away just how much he adored his little troublemaker. That was something he'd never been able to control.

With a little chuckle he added: "With her around I'd have to struggle for your attention - and it really wouldn't be a fair fight. I'd just end up feeling bad for myself because I couldn't catch the eye of a beautiful woman"

Morgan Stirling
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Morgan Alexander
 Posted: Jun 14 2018, 05:15 PM
QUOTE

Member

Age // 24

Posts // 15

Merit // High

Alias // Kat

Occupation // Librarian

Partner // Maddox Alexander

Mini Quote

Falling feels like flying, until you hit the ground.

Central + She, her, etc.


That Morgan didn't seem to react very much to the news that his daughter was unaware of her was quite telling. She was normally a fairly expressive person, and that her features transformed from that quiet anxiety to a very careful neutrality said quite a bit. In truth, she wasn't sure whether to feel disappointed or what. Had he kept the news from his little girl out of fear for her reaction? Was it going to turn out that badly? If her presence was going to disrupt their lives that badly, she would just back out of the match and take the hit to her status.

It was a good thing that Maddox didn't leave her wallowing in uncertainty for long, because his explanation did a good deal to ease her concerns. So it was just that his little girl was.. well.. a little girl. That knowledge made her grin, imagining that cute face in the picture babbling incessantly, innocently ordering them both about and hogging the spotlight. Just as it should be.

Her train of thought immediately got derailed. Not only did it derail, it exploded in a massive conflagration. Surely that was why her eyes rounded and her features began to fill with a brilliant pink hue. He thought she was beautiful? Maybe he was just being nice. She ducked her head and lowered her eyes, a shy smile on her lips.

"Fair enough. I know how kids can be, and I won't lie, I'd probably make a big fuss over her. I love kids."

Hopefully that would make him a little more at ease with the whole situation, too. The last thing she wanted was either of them worrying she'd be an evil stepmother. After a few minutes, satisfied that the heat in her face had subsided somewhat, she looked up at him once more, her eyes alight with a merry sparkle.

"I know it can be a sensitive thing, so I'm more than happy to wait. Whenever you feel you're both ready for her to meet me, that's when we'll do it."

Even though they only had a month before the issue had to be forced. That was enough time, right? She sure hoped so. Although, that made her remember something, and she tilted her head thoughtfully as she broached the.. likely unanticipated topic.

"I have a cat. His name is Rasputin and it's not at all indicative of his personality, I swear. He's really very sweet. Is that a problem?"

Maddox Alexander
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Maddox Alexander
 Posted: Jun 18 2018, 06:16 PM
QUOTE

Member

Age // 29

Posts // 22

Merit // High

Alias // Zyqoa

Occupation // Pediatric nurse

Partner // Morgan Stirling

Mini Quote

Listen, smile, agree, then do whatever the fuck you were gonna do anyway

GMT+1 + She/her


Morgan's face went suspiciously blank, and Maddox's heart went straight into his throat. He didn't know if not telling Lexi had been the right thing to do, and truth be told there were several reasons why he was putting it off. He did want to get to know Morgan himself first, that much was true, but he also wasn't sure how to break the news to his daughter. For as long as she could remember it had just been the two of them, and she was the reigning queen of the household, no question about that. But with Morgan's arrival she would have to relinquish some control and attention, and that was going to be interesting. Maddox wasn't downright worried, though. He wouldn't go that far. Lexi was a sweet girl, and Morgan seemed very nice too, so he felt fairly confident that the three of them would figure it out. Besides, it wasn't like Lexi was unused to women, since she did spend a lot of time with her grandmother and aunts, so the addition of a female presence wouldn't be a total shock to her.

Maddox was very relieved to see the expression on his betrothed's face change when he continued talking. Judging by her grin he had managed to ease her concerns, and that was a win he was more than happy about. The fact that she was gorgeous when she smiled only made it all the better. Add the sudden pink color in her cheeks, the shy smile, and it was completely impossible for Maddox to take his eyes off her. He was very tempted to reach out to her. His arm was on the backrest of the bench, all he had to do was stretch it and he could squeeze her arm or brush her hair away to give him a better view of her face. His fingers were almost twitching. But he didn't want to overstep, so somehow he managed not to move. Instead a warm smile took over his face once she spoke again.

"I'm sure you'll like her. She's wonderful. But every father probably says that about their daughters, so maybe I'm not the most reliable source", he chuckled softly and shrug his shoulders, a lighthearted gesture to underline the humor. It was certainly a relief that she didn't have a problem with children. That would've made things difficult, and probably quite uncomfortable. Especially since Maddox was hoping to have more - eventually.

The topic of pets brought out another chuckle. There was another relief, that she didn't have a problem with animals. Arguably there was a difference between one cat and the chaos that was his house, but it was certainly a start. "That's not a problem at all. My place is basically just a permit away from being a zoo", with a slightly embarrassed look on his face he scratched the back of his neck. He had a habit of taking in wayward animals, the ones most other families didn't want, and thus his house was filled with a plethora of more or less peculiar-looking pets. Anything from a cat with a stumpy tail to fish with weird coloring or a lizard with an amputated leg, they all coexisted within the walls of 1101 Sycamore Street. The outcasts and odd ducks, Maddox had a real soft spot for them.

"I'm sure we can find a place for Rasputin! Which is a wonderful name by the way"

Morgan Stirling
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Morgan Alexander
 Posted: Jun 18 2018, 09:23 PM
QUOTE

Member

Age // 24

Posts // 15

Merit // High

Alias // Kat

Occupation // Librarian

Partner // Maddox Alexander

Mini Quote

Falling feels like flying, until you hit the ground.

Central + She, her, etc.


"It's not me liking her that I'm worried about, it's the other way around that concerns me."

This was said with a crooked smile and a small, slightly self-deprecating laugh. Honesty had always been Morgan's policy, because lies had a way of building upon themselves and tripping you up at the worst of times. And besides, she didn't want to start their relationship off by being dishonest with Maddox. So why not tell him the truth? She was afraid Lexi would take badly to having a stepmother, for one reason or another, and she wanted to make her transition into their home, their life, as easy as possible.

Hearing that Maddox had an abundance of pets in his home made her grin. At least that was one thing they had in common: An appreciation for animals. Though she'd probably come out of her skin when she encountered the first reptile or amphibian. They were not her cup of tea, to put it nicely, and they'd be able to hear her screaming in space. But that was a hurdle to cross when they arrived at it. For now, she laughed at his comment on her cat's name.

"I named him that because he's miraculously survived death a total of seven times, in different ways. Then it kind of became a joke, because supposedly Rasputin wasn't a very nice guy, and Razzy is so.. well, let's just say, I've literally seen kids pick him up and shake him, and he just takes it. Nothing you do makes that cat mad, you could probably shave him and he'd still try to cuddle with you afterward."

Oh god, she was babbling about her cat. She sounded like a crazy cat lady. Was that what she was on the verge of becoming? The crazy old librarian who dressed her cat up and took pictures of him? At that thought, Morgan's features twisted into an expression of mild amusement mixed with dismay. Absolutely not. She couldn't let this continue! She needed to make him think she wasn't a terribly boring geek.

She chewed on her lower lip for a few moments, trying to think of something interesting to say. Maybe she should ask him about himself? She opened her mouth to do just that, but apparently some part of her brain had something other than a safe, non-intrusive question in mind, because that was definitely not what came tumbling out.

"So just how extensive are those tattoos?"

Way to go, blabbermouth, why not just ask him to take his shirt off so you can see for yourself? You're hopeless. Her face colored again as she mentally chastised herself. Normally she wasn't this bad about blurting out the first thing on her mind. She was going to blame it on this whole situation having her off-kilter. And the surprising revelation that she found his unconventional appearance unexpectedly attractive.

Maddox Alexander
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Maddox Alexander
 Posted: Jun 19 2018, 02:09 PM
QUOTE

Member

Age // 29

Posts // 22

Merit // High

Alias // Zyqoa

Occupation // Pediatric nurse

Partner // Morgan Stirling

Mini Quote

Listen, smile, agree, then do whatever the fuck you were gonna do anyway

GMT+1 + She/her


"From what I've seen so far I don't think you have anything to worry about. She'll love you. How could she not?", he was out to calm her, make her feel less nervous about the situation, but that didn't make any of his words any less true. He had known Morgan for a total of ten minutes, but he was already quite taken with her, and putting a lid on that had never really been his strong suit. He was in many ways a pretty straight forward guy - he wore his emotions on his sleeve, and he spoke his mind, but always in the kindest way possible, so all you really had to do to get to know him was move past the fact that he looked like he'd fare better in a biker gang than a hospital.

With every word that Morgan spoke about Rasputin, Maddox could feel a warmth spread in his chest. Clearly the cat meant a lot to her, and her enthusiasm went straight to the large man's heart. Nothing was more endearing than when someone just bubbled over with words because they'd hit a subject they enjoyed to talk about, and that was the feeling he was getting from her. It was perfect, really. She shared a passion of his, so she was less likely to think he was a giant weirdo for occasionally bubbling over himself. Which he knew he had a tendency to do - his siblings' had told him as much. She still might think living in a petting zoo was a little over the top, but his hopes of reaching a compromise were burning bright.

"It's probably a good thing that he's patient. Lexi likes to play with the animals. She'll carry them around the house, or even put them in this doll stroller my dad bought her a while back. Sometimes she puts little hats on them and has tea parties. If they'll sit still long enough, that is", he couldn't count on two hands the amount of times he'd walked by a sleeping cat with a bonnet on it's head, and it still made him laugh. The most peculiar thing was probably the fact that they wouldn't even try to take the damn thing off, they'd just go about their day looking slightly fancier than usual.

Maddox would have been perfectly happy listening to Morgan talk about her cat for the rest of the day, and the notion of crazy cat lady wouldn't have crossed his mind once. He had a rather large margin for crazy, and it would take a lot more than that to cross the line. He enjoyed listening to her talk and would have urged her to continue if he had realized she was starting to feel self conscious. However he also had no problem rolling with a change of subject, though her choice was a bit of a surprise to him. Not because he wasn't used to tattoo-related questions, being covered in them that was a pretty regular topic, but the way she phrased her question was striking. He couldn't figure out if she was skeptical about his look and hoping he had stopped after filling up his arms, or if she was genuinely interested and maybe even masking a little wish to see them. That wasn't completely foreign to him either. Truthfully he'd taken off his shirt to show them off to people more than once, and it usually didn't take a lot of convincing to get him there. After all he was quite proud of them.

"Pretty extensive. The I'm close to running out of bare skin kind of extensive", his smile was almost shy as he brushed a hand across his arm, a movement that was accompanied by a flexing of his biceps. Neither of those actions were entirely deliberate, just sort of a physical response to her attention. "There's still a little room on my legs, but that's about it"

Morgan Stirling
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Morgan Alexander
 Posted: Jun 19 2018, 10:17 PM
QUOTE

Member

Age // 24

Posts // 15

Merit // High

Alias // Kat

Occupation // Librarian

Partner // Maddox Alexander

Mini Quote

Falling feels like flying, until you hit the ground.

Central + She, her, etc.


Really, she couldn't say anything in response to his question. Not just because it was quite obviously rhetorical, but because she was once again blushing and ducking her head, although she did sort of respond. If a shrug could be considered a response, that is. Even though she had no intention of being cruel to the girl, and was going to do her best not to disrupt their life too much, there were way too many stories from too many countries about evil stepmothers for her to not be afraid. So she'd just do her best not to make Lexi hate her and hope that they would at least get along. Although a secret part of her heart was hoping they'd actually form a parent-child bond, someday, even though she'd never admit it out loud.

Once again it was Maddox to the rescue, saving her from her own wayward thoughts, and she couldn't help but laugh at the description of his daughter playing with the animals. It was so easy to picture Rasputin, sweet and gentle Razzy, boneless in the grasp of Lexi and being carted around the house.

"Oh my gosh, that is amazing. Yeah, I think she and Raz will get along just fine. He loves attention. I might not be able to call him my cat much longer."

Her tone was wry, but she wasn't at all serious. Rasputin was a very sweet cat, yes, but she was very much his human, and she found it far more likely that Maddox would often find himself having to remove Raz from her lap in order to get to her. That was a mental image that made her smile, partially because she was oddly amused by just how easy it was to picture her forming a life with Maddox. Something about him put her at ease, made her think good things about the future for the first time in a very long while.

That he didn't seem at all put off by her inappropriate (to her mind) inquiry was probably a large part of it. She was naturally curious and inquisitive, and she'd always found the art of body modification to be quite intriguing. When his hand moved over his arm and his muscles shifted beneath the skin, she found herself leaning in closer, reaching up as though to touch some of the intricate artwork that covered his flesh. She didn't, however, her fingertips ghosting through the air just above his bicep, following the lines inked there as though a force field separated them.

"What I can see here is beautiful."

The sentence ended almost awkwardly, as though she'd been going to say more and decided not to. In truth, she'd been on the verge of saying that she looked forward to seeing the rest of his ink in the near future, but that was far too bold. Knowing that they'd be expected to procreate was one thing.. actually broaching the subject of the act was another. She'd always been shy about sex and that definitely hadn't changed over the past two years of abstinence. The urge to run her fingers over his skin was just making her all the more aware of him as a man, and that was not what she needed, so she drew back and met his gaze, whereupon impulse struck again.

"Would you like to come over for dinner sometime? I don't know about you but sitting out in public like this makes me feel like everyone is staring, even though I know it's completely illogical. I'd like to get to know you better, just not.. here. Does that make sense?"

Maddox Alexander
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Maddox Alexander
 Posted: Jun 21 2018, 04:26 PM
QUOTE

Member

Age // 29

Posts // 22

Merit // High

Alias // Zyqoa

Occupation // Pediatric nurse

Partner // Morgan Stirling

Mini Quote

Listen, smile, agree, then do whatever the fuck you were gonna do anyway

GMT+1 + She/her


Compliments came easy to Maddox, always had. Among his brothers he was known for charming their wives by throwing compliments around, though the guys pointing that out was always more out of humor than jealousy. Knowing Maddox meant that they were all perfectly aware that the big man never did anything with ill intent. He wasn't trying to poach anybody, his mental filter was just different. He said what was on his mind, which luckily was almost always positive, so he didn't get in trouble often. Then again, you had to be pretty brave to go up against him, so that might have something to do with it too.

"She does steal hearts very quickly, she might run off with his too", he agreed with an amused smile on his face. His little girl would certainly be excited about a new pet, that much was for sure. No matter how often he brought something new home, she never got tired of it. Her bright eyes would light up every time, which of course led to him doing it more often than he might otherwise have. So he was certain that at least the addition of Rasputin would be welcome. Morgan herself was more of a wild card, though. But ever the optimist, Maddox was convinced they'd make it work - one way or another.

He sat quietly as he watched her fingers trailing through the air. He was acutely aware of himself, of his movements and his breathing, and he was doing his very best to keep it all in check. To stay calm and normal and inconspicuous, but it was surprisingly hard. The closer she got, the more tempting it became to close the distance between them - and with her fingertips so close he could almost feel them on his skin, it would be so very easy to actually do it. He wouldn't have to move his arm more than a couple of inches, and for some reason that thought just wouldn't leave his head. He didn't even really know why. She was definitely a gorgeous woman, but even so he didn't usually react this way. Not to this degree. It was odd, but he was quick to blame it on the situation. She wasn't just any woman after all, but the one he'd be sharing a home with. A bed with. And the prospect of actually lying next to another person again after fours years of solitude had an undeniable impact. One that any other weirdness was easily attributed to.

"Thanks", it was just one word, but it was all he could muster in that moment. She really had a way about her that went straight to his head.

Then she pulled away, and the spell was broken. He let out a breath that he didn't even realize he'd been holding, and focused his eyes on her face. With a soft smile on his lips he nodded at her words. He agreed that this was very public, but it had seemed like the wisest choice for a first meeting. The least loaded. "Yeah, I get what you mean - I think. And dinner sounds great. But I should probably warn you that I'm a vegetarian."

Morgan Stirling
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