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Aurel glanced at Geralt as he commented about Lucien's set of skills. Perhaps that was a slip up on his part, he hadn't meant to make Lucien sound more interesting, but he couldn't really deny those facts. "I wouldn't really call him an enthusiast he just likes to pick up random skills." He said simply. All the years he had known the Ringleader showed him just how many different sets of skills the Frenchman had. It had been really impressive for him as a child, but knowing how his upbringing had been, it wasn't surprising. One had to fill up all that free time somehow, but that was something Aurel and Illy had both learned to do growing up.

Akane had been doing a decent job of keeping her gaze anywhere but on the cards in front of her. She did notice however, when Geralt had grabbed hold of the Joker from her. It was very hard to hide her disappointment when he had stopped himself from taking it when Ivory arrived. Had her fox ears been exposed, they would have immediately flattened.

Ivory glanced down at Geralt, but decided not to answer his question, simply making her way around the table and taking his place. She glanced down at the cards to see which he had left. It seemed he at least did not have the joker.

"Makes me want to lose." She muttered under her breath once the man had gone, before reaching out and taking a card from Cora. No pair.

"Do you know what Lucien wants to talk to him about..?" Aurel asked curiously, watching Geralt head off to the Ringleader's trailer.

"Just show stuff. He'll be performing last on our final show day, after me." She said with a sigh.

"How exciting. I can't wait to be able to see what his show is actually like." Akane commented. "You don't seem very happy about it though."

At this Ivory glanced at Akane. "I'll have to practice with him and I'm not a huge fan of him, so yeah." She grumbled. "You and Cora don't seem to have that problem though." She said, deciding to use this chance to maybe talk to the two women about Geralt. It seemed like the man may have already won Cora over, but she wasn't sure about Akane yet, she was just usually friendly with everyone.
Lucien wasn't sure how long it had actually taken him to drift into unconsciousness, but it had been a smooth transition, and despite the headache he had been trying to fight off, he managed to sleep quite soundly. The body heat Faolan provided throughout the night made the blankets almost completely unnecessary, and he had found himself curling up against him to seek more of his warmth. It felt like the most natural thing in the world for him, and not once had he awakened throughout the night, feeling completely safe in his arms.

It was the sensation of being watched that ended up rousing the Frenchman from his sleep the next morning. Tiredly he opened his eyes, grimacing slightly at the loud pounding in his head. He supposed that was what people called a hangover. Having worked at bars on multiple occasions, the term had come up often for him. For a moment his vision was blurry, but as it cleared, he found his gaze meeting with Faolan's dark emerald eyes. It took a moment for him to register their current position.. the warmth he felt even now, before he was hit with the memories of what had transpired last night during their drunken fiasco. The thought brought a redness to his cheeks, but he didn't make any attempt to move away from the Irishman. That.. had really happened.

For a moment he thought it might have all been a dream.. but considering their current position now, it was definitely not possible. There was no doubt that it had occurred. How did he feel about it? Embarrassed, certainly. Never had the Frenchman acted with such... little control. It had been the first time in his life he had been overcome with such a desire.. and it was certainly a new feeling for him.

"Good morning.." He said, his voice a little raspy. Even though he didn't regret anything that happened, he wasn't sure how he was supposed to act with Faolan now that they had crossed this line. Should he.. try to not make things awkward by acting normal..? Or should he bring it up? He just didn't know. This was all new to him. For once he just didn't know what to say.
It was hearing Faolan leave his bed that snapped the Frenchman out of his thoughts. For a moment he didn't react, unsure of what the man was going to do, but then he heard him approach. Did.. he want to talk about it after all? He had been thinking about it so much, but the thought of actually having the conversation stumped him for a moment.

Then the blanket lifted, and he felt Faolan's weight on the bed. This had surprised him, and caused him to open his eyes as he could feel Faolan's warmth at his back. Before he had felt cold.. but now that the Irishman was next to him.. he felt warm again. He found himself instinctively relaxing after he felt Faolan's arm across his body. This action gave the Frenchman the sense of reassurance he needed. He had been craving the other man's touch, and despite having him so close by in the room, it still hadn't felt near enough.. until now. He had practically melted into his arms. It just felt.. so right. He turned slightly to look up at Faolan, his expression softening.

"Yeah.. it's okay." He said, giving him a small smile, curling up slightly against him. While there were so many things he would have liked to talk about, in this moment.. this was enough to tell him that things would be okay. It was what he needed to finally be able to relax enough to lose himself to sleep. While very aware of the Irishman's presence behind him, he felt extremely comforted by it, and no longer felt like he was alone. He shifted slightly, to place his own hand over Faolan's.

"Sleep well.." His tone was much softer, but also much brighter than his last goodnight to him. He closed his eyes, his expression becoming more peaceful than before. This way.. he felt like he'd be able to sleep just fine.
It had taken a little while for Geralt to answer Akane's question, but she didn't pressure it, and gave him the time he needed, though it did make her curious as to why this might have seemed like such a hard question to answer. She had thought it was simple enough, but upon receiving it, she smiled widely at him, glad to hear it was the case.

"I'm glad." She said, before turning her attention to Illy as she said what card she wanted from Cora. She was quick to hand it over to her without looking at it, but was mostly paying attention to Geralt and Cora's exchange. It made her curious of what other cool tricks he could do with his hands.

"Hmm? Oh, right!" She said, before reaching over and taking a card from Aurel, excited to have found a pair to drop.

"You and Aurel have that in common, he's pretty quick too! Have you ever been interested in card tricks, Aurel?" She asked the other man, who hadn't been expecting to be dragged into the conversation.

"I mean.. they're cool looking. I've seen Lucien do a couple before.. I just didn't think to try it." He muttered. Aurel had never been a fast runner, and his physique had never been particularly strong, but he had always had very fast reflexes and reaction times.. maybe it was from learning to hunt for food as a kid, but that much had always seemed natural to him. It was typical of a snake so.. perhaps that was why.


Ivory made her way across the grounds again toward the mess area, despite the sun making it harder for her to see, she could vaguely tell that Illy actually did join the card game. That was good, though it didn't seem like they had quite finished.

"Lucien's asking for you." She told the magician blatantly before she took a seat next to the fortune teller.

Once they had arrived at their temporary home. Lucien wasn't sure of what he should do. He looked up at Faolan, just as he had turned in his direction, and for a moment he felt his heart skip a beat. Part of him hoped that Faolan would bring up what happened but.. he didn't. He hoped.. he hadn't decided to just forget about it. There was something about it that was discouraging, even more so recalling that he would be leaving tomorrow, but he didn't argue. They had done enough of that today.

The Frenchman turned away from him and removed his shoes, before removing the vest over his button up shirt. He began to unbutton it, but then paused before removing it. Perhaps it was best he didn't, even if it was hot. Now that things had.. calmed, he began to feel tired, and decided to just get into his bed. He couldn't help but glance over at Faolan, who had removed his shirt. At this point he couldn't help but be conscious of the fact he was attracted to him, but still he tore his eyes away, and turned away from him.

"Goodnight, Faolan.." He said quietly before closing his eyes. Despite his attempt at trying to relax, it was harder to do than he had originally thought. He couldn't quite cave into the tiredness he felt, even if he wanted to ease the headache he was having. The events from before kept replaying in his head. He just couldn't stop thinking about what happened. Going forward.. what would this mean for him? Would Faolan really pretend it didn't happen? Or.. would they be able to talk about it? He just didn't know.
Aurel leaned slightly away as Geralt nudged him, though it wasn't such a large distance that it would be extremely noticeable to everyone. It was mostly out of surprise, since he wasn't quite used to the man just yet, but it didn't take long for him to readjust again.

"Yes, they are." He agreed. There was no denying that. Despite how hard it was for them to catch certain things at time, Aurel couldn't deny that over the years, both women had displayed large amounts of wisdom, even if they didn't appear to at first glance.

"Oh, I see." She responded. There was a very small amount of disappointment in her voice, but it went as quick as it came. It would have been nice to meet someone who might have lived just as long, but it wasn't that big of a deal. "Well if you've lost count, then it must have been a good amount of years right? Is it fun?" She asked. Surely if one dedicated so much time to something like that, then it was because they were enjoying themselves? Based on what she hard heard in regards to his first show, it sounded like it had been very fun.

"I think you playing can make things interesting, certainly more challenging for some. We're supposed to be learning to have better pokerfaces." Aurel spoke up as he reached over to take a card from Akane, but was disappointed to not find a pair. It seemed Geralt was quite confidence despite being at least a little aware of what Illy could do. It would be nice if she was able to beat him.
The intensity of their contact only increased. He could feel Faolan's desire just as much as his own. He surrendered himself completely to the Irishman, too entranced by the feeling of his hand trailing down his body to hear the sound of laughter from further down the street. Feeling Faolan pull away, he couldn't help but lean forward, as if seeking more contact, but then stopped when he realized he had done it for a reason. He was going to speak up and question it but.. then Faolan silenced him. It was only then that he became aware of the fact people were nearing them. He managed to snap himself out of his trance as Faolan said they had to go. Right.. they were still out in public. It had been easy for him to forget about that in the moment. He couldn't help but stare at the man's hand as it still grasped his wrist, and was almost disappointed when it was released. He hadn't really wanted to break contact.. but they couldn't really walk out like this either. He simply nodded, attempting to fix the state of his clothing as they walked out of the alleyway.

It didn't seem like they had been seen, but Lucien didn't speak up, only followed. A part of him was still in a daze in regards of what had just happened. Even though.. they weren't touching anymore, he could still feel the heat from the places Faolan's fingers had touched... and he couldn't forget the feeling. He didn't want to forget the feeling. He couldn't stop his golden eyes from trailing to look up at the Irishman, as Lucien was lagging a bit behind him, taking in his current still disheveled state. Even though he was trying to seem composed, his heart still felt like it was pounding out of his chest.

The throbbing in his head made itself known again throughout their walk, which was entirely silent. It was honestly it was a little unnerving, considering what had just happened. Lucien would have liked to address it but.. at the same time it wasn't really a conversation they should really have out on the street. It was clear the last thing Faolan wanted was to be seen, so he respected that, and remained silent.

Lucien found himself consumed with these new feelings the longer he remained in contact with Faolan. His body and lips moved almost instinctively as Faolan pressed him against the opposing wall, reaching up to slide an arm around Faolan's broad shoulders to pull him closer to him, if that was possible. A light shudder went up his spine as he felt Faolan's warm hands make contact with his bare skin.

The Frenchman was overtaken by physical urges he had never felt or considered before, hyper-aware of just how tightly their bodies were pressing against each other. It was a pleasurable feeling, and a contact he didn't want to break as he found his left hand trailing down Faolan's chest, feeling the well-toned muscles through his shirt. Over the years he had always kept himself from staring at the Irishman too long when they were changing or bathing in the outdoors, not wanting to make Faolan uncomfortable, but he could not deny that he had always found Faolan to be an incredibly attractive man, he just hadn't realized there was more to that attraction than he had originally thought.

Now that he was able to touch him like this, he felt like all of his restraint was gone. Lucien's hand slid under his shirt and curled around his body, enjoying the feeling of the warmth he was providing him. Faolan's direct touch left trails of a burning fire across his skin, that only made him want more. The Frenchman's complexion was completely flushed, not only because of the alcohol but because of the feelings of arousal that were becoming harder for him to ignore. How much time had passed? He wasn't sure, but he didn't want this to end.
Akane couldn't help let out a small chuckle. "It is isn't it?" She said before looking back at Geralt as she dropped another pair. The conversation allowed distraction from the fact she was in possession of the Joker, it kept herself from staring at it, and instead kept her eyes on the magician. She of all people couldn't say anything, considering how old she actually was. She was honestly curious, because she had yet to meet anyone who was as old as she. Granted she had spent her first one hundred years of life as a fox, but it didn't dissuade her from having wanted to learn new things. She found it had only added to her experiences of life, and the years she now had as a human only added to it. There were still plenty of things she needed to learn, but she was happy to have all these great people with her on her journey.

"Something about a hundred years? I'm not sure, but I know sometimes things get lost in translation." She said thoughtfully. One of the many things she had learned when living among humans is how much people loved to gossip. Lucien had always told her not to believe everything she heard. Hearing a pair of light footsteps approach, she glanced behind her, smiling as she saw Illy had returned.

Ivory turned to Illy as she spoke to her, raising a slight eyebrow. "Alright.." She said, though she hadn't been in any particular hurry to leave. Still.. if Illy was here then she supposed she wouldn't be leaving the rest of them alone with Geralt. She handed the fortune teller her cards as she rose to her feet.

"Give them a run for their money on my behalf." She told her, with a slight grin, though there was only one particular person that was aimed toward. It wasn't like they were betting anything, but it would be nice to hear it if Geralt lost. She gave the table one last glance, before she readjusted her cloak and reluctantly walked out from the shade the tarp was providing, quickly making her way across the grounds to Lucien's trailer.

She knocked upon arrival.

"Come in." She heard Lucien call out to her, and quickly went inside. Lucien had been nice enough to preemptively close his curtains on her behalf.

"Illy said you needed to talk to me?" She asked, walking up and taking a seat on the other side of his desk. He didn't seem displeased, so she didn't think he had called her here to give her a talk about being nicer to the magician.

"Yes, I actually wanted to consult something with you. It's our tradition to have the consecutive performances on the last day.. and Illy and I agreed that Geralt's act would best be suited to be last, considering how long it runs. Up to this point the closing had been up to you, and we were struggling with whether we should keep the order we've been using and change it up.. Honestly I feel like transitioning your show into Geralt's would flow the smoothest, but I know you don't like him. If I do this, you'll have to practice at least a few times with him until you come up with a way to do that, but before I mention this to Geralt at all, I wanted to make sure that it was alright with you." He explained.

Immediately Ivory grimaced. It wasn't like she had any particular attachment to the idea of closing the show, she just did it cause Lucien told her it would work out best that way. She didn't care if Geralt did it or not, but the idea of having to spend time with him was displeasing to her. On instinct she wanted to say no, but then she thought about what would happen if she declined. Someone else would take her place, and that meant someone else would end up having to practice with him. Considering what she had seen from him so far, she didn't want that to have to happen this soon, when they still didn't know what he was or what he wanted. She let out a small frustrated sigh.

"Fine. I know everything you decide you do for a reason, and I don't want someone else to get stuck with him." She said, crossing her arms. "But if he pisses me off, I can't make any promises that I'll hold my tongue. He seems like the type to like to be in control of things, and I'm not letting him boss me around." Her tone was dry as she spoke.

Lucien chuckled. "I would expect nothing less from you. He might be an experienced showman but you have seniority here. I know you'll do what's best for the show in the end." He said pausing for a moment. "Yes, I've noticed he seems to like edging you on. In all honesty, Ivory, I would consider approaching this a little differently. He seems to take satisfaction in your annoyance, so I would keep that in mind in your future interactions. Instead of letting him play you, try to play him. You have the wits to pull it off you know?" He suggested.

At this, Ivory's expression eased, and a slight smirk tugged at her lips. "My, what a manipulative thing you are suggesting, Lucien. Aren't you supposed to be the good guy here?" She teased, though she knew he was right. It was clear Geralt enjoyed the.. bickering. She didn't want him to think he could just easily poke at her either, and if she wanted to catch him making a mistake, she supposed she'd have to be more careful in how she reacted to some of the things he said and did. What was it he had said? Play the player? Maybe it was possible for her to get his guard down if he thought she didn't absolutely despise him. She didn't, at least not yet. She just found him annoying.

Lucien couldn't help but laugh. "I like to think I am the good guy, but I know a sharp man when I see one. He doesn't seem like a person who would slip so easily, but if anyone can get it to happen, it's you. Me calling you away can easily be played as me scolding you to be nicer to him." He said a little amusingly. It would certainly make it seem like the Ringleader was less suspicious of him if they went about it that way, but it was ultimately up to what Ivory decided to do.

"Well.. as much as I hate to admit it, he doesn't seem like an idiot, so I suppose you're right. I'll do my best, but I'm not suddenly just going to start being nice to him, that'd be weird. I'll make sure the show is a success, don't worry. You should stop by practice sometime though just to make sure I haven't decided to throw a knife at him." She slightly joked.

"I'll definitely be sure to keep that in mind. That's all I had to say, so you can go back if you want. Mind telling him to come see me?" He asked. "The sooner we get started with this the better."

Ivory nodded, rising from the chair. "I do mind, but I'll do it anyway. Be careful Lucien, don't forget he seems to have taken a liking to you. You are inviting him into your trailer."

"You all worry too much. I'll be sure to be careful."
Lucien was relieved that Faolan didn't pull away from him. It would have given him time to gather what he would have said next, but he wasn't given the chance. Before he knew it, the Irishman's arms were around him, and there was a warmth at his lips as Faolan pulled him into a kiss. There was a moment of shock, as it wasn't something he was expecting, but it didn't last long. Suddenly it felt like all of his worries and fears had been completely washed away. He relaxed, and it was when he leaned into the kiss, a hand reaching out to tightly grip Faolan's shirt, that he realized just how much this meant to him. How much.. he wanted this. Plenty of times women had sought his company in the past, and Lucien never held any interest in them. Even back then.. he had always found his mind trailing back to Faolan, thinking about how he was doing.. how he was feeling.. how he had to go back and meet up with him soon. This feeling that stirred within him was not simply friendship.. no it was more than that. He could see that now.

There was reluctance as Lucien forced himself to break their kiss, allowing them to catch their breath for a moment. He saw Faolan quickly glance at their surroundings, a glint of worry on his face. It was that and the feeling of the cold night air against the heat that their contact had created that made Lucien more aware of their surroundings. He tugged on Faolan's shirt, and pulled him into the nearby alleyway, making sure they were out of sight from any people that might decide to pass by. He understood his worry of not wanting to be seen.

With that out of the way, there was no hesitation in his next course of action as he placed a hand on Faolan's cheek, golden eyes burning with a newfound desire before leaning in to kiss the Irishman again. Their last contact had been his first kiss.. and now this was his second, and there was no moment in him where he regretted any second of what was transpiring. He had never felt Faolan as relaxed as he could feel him now. Any time the Frenchman had hugged him.. he had always felt tense, but not this time. It was the most relaxed and at ease they had ever been with each other, and he could not deny that he was rather enjoying it. In this moment everything that had happened prior to this did not matter. The only thing on his mind right now was Faolan, and how much he didn't want to let go of him.
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