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Dramatis Personae

Alyssa, Jackson, Micah, Hive

14 March 2014

Oh, hey, /that's/ Aly! (Part of the Future Past TP.)


<NYC> 303 {Lighthaus} - Village Lofts - East Village

This apartment is cheerful, in its way -- bright and airy, its floor plan open and a plethora of windows providing it with an abundance of light. The tiny entrance hall opens into a living room, small, though its sparse furniture and lack of clutter give it a more open feel. The decor is subdued and minimalist; black and white is the dominant theme, with occasional splashes of deep crimson to offset the monochrome, though of late myriad bright-coloured dragonflies swarm across the living room wall. The couch and armchair are upholstered in black corduroy, the low wide coffee table central is black wood and glass-topped, and a few large pillowy beanbags provide additional seating by the large windows that dominate the back wall. The living room and kitchen both hold a rather inordinate number of lamps in addition to the ceiling lights; standing lamps, small lamps on each counter, large sunlights in the corner. More often than not, they're largely all turned on, too.

Towards the back, a couple of doors lead off into bedrooms and bathroom, and to the right, the kitchen's tile is separated from the living room's dark hardwood floors by black countertops. Above the bedroom to one side, there is higher space; a ladder climbs up to a lofted area looking down on the living room. Standing in front of the partition between living and cooking area is a large fish tank: one lone Betta, blood-red, swims regally among several species of black and silver fish. A hallway beyond the kitchen leads further into the apartment. Another bathroom stands just into the hall and the farthest door leads to the apartment's final bedroom, the door usually kept shut to hold in the acrid fumes of turpentine and paints from within.

So it is Friday night - nominally Friday, though, really. Encroaching on Saturday morning in the chronological sense, but still definitely Friday night in the it's not tomorrow until going to sleep and waking up again has occurred. The city doesn't really give a shit what time it is, though, nor does it care in any particular way about any cab in particular. //This// cab in particular, though, pulls up; parks; lets out its occupant into the night. Bundled, but colorfully so, there isn't really a //lot// that is immediately notable about it; about her. Most obviously notable: two long braids out from under a striped knit cap, a laptop bag slung across her diagonally and a roller-bag tump-tump-tumping along behind her. She's not the only arrival: she slips into the lobby without having to RUIN THE SURPRISE thanks to a couple returning, and fidgets the entire elevator ride up to the right floor, whereupon she -- knocks. And knocks, and knocks, and knocks, cheerfully obnoxious despite the late hour, her, "Surprise!" loud enough to hopefully be heard by the apartment's occupants without, you know, SUPER disturbing the neighbors. Aly ... has arrived.

Despite the late hour Jackson is ridiculously wide-awake, a combined function of increased sunlight lately and a habitual insomnia and the fact that it being Friday night, the /pups/ are still out at Fight Club. Which means he is contractually obligated as a Parent to stay awake and /fret/ about them until they return.

Admittedly, at just this moment he isn't doing a whole lot by way of fretting; he is, instead, mixing up a bowl of brownie batter in the kitchen. He hasn't been home all that /long/, still dressed middling-nice from his trip to the theatre this evening -- black button-down shot through with silvery pinstripes, dark slacks; the eyepatch he wears (embroidered with a skull-and-crossbones, though the skull has a pink mohawk) and the ridiculously brightly-patterned mismatched socks and armwarmers don't really /go/ with the Respectable Clothing but do go with the lime green and neon purple streaks in his jet-black hair.

He perks at the knock, leaving his bowl abandoned on the counter to start skittering towards the door. "-- Huh I didn't expect them home jus' --" This cuts off at the voice from outside the door. " -- no what wait that /can't/ be --" There's a rather /puzzled/ curiosity in his expression as he flings open the (many) locks on the door to pull it open wide. "-- I ain't dreamin', am I?" is his initial wide-eyed greeting to Aly.

Almost-Saturday means that Friday has officially struck Pajama O'clock. Micah is just emerging from the bedroom where he has freshly changed from his evening's dress clothes into a navy blue henley shirt, pajama pants dotted in Mane 6 cutie marks, and blue fuzzy-warm Cookie Monster face socks. Comfortable clothing is a priority, after all. His auburn hair is a tousled mess from changing and not being tended to afterward. He slips into the kitchen and fills the tea kettle, setting it on the stove to boil. Humming softly to himself, he fishes through the tea cabinet to locate tins of rooibos and lavender, setting up a tea ball in his green earthenware mug to wait for the hot water. "Y'want tea, honey? I'm makin' that lavender rooibos blend for me."

Then there is /so much knocking/. Micah startles at the unexpected sound. "Twins wouldn't be knockin' if it were them. An'...that ain't either of their voices, neither. Who's...what's...?" He comes closer, peering curiously at the door.

"Totally not, and if you //are// then I am t-- okay, that's not so much of a thing as it would have been last week but I //really super hope// that dreaming wouldn't involve //jetlag//, oh my god," comes spilling out of Aly's mouth pretty much immediately on the heels of Jackson's question. "I'm here, I'm here, I'm home, I'm //here//, like, for real for good probably-" follows hard on its heels, but there's also a flurry of //motion// too: rather than actually attempting to get //in// the door first she is hastily divesting herself of her laptop bag, her hat and her scarf (rainbow, with silvery thread shot-through) and //lunging// forward to envelop Jackson in a hug -- which stops short of actual contact with a near-audible record-scratch expressed in physical form, "Shit I forgot about the //arrowing// are you okay for hugs?" followed by, "and also, hi!" complete with duck-around to wave to Micah before going back to, uh, sort of //staring// up at Jax. Also, vibrating. Just a little.

Jackson listens to this spill of words with a steadily growing smile, wide-bright and carrying over to light the brilliant blue of his eye. He actually even manages to stay quiet through it, though by the end /he's/ also slightly-vibratey with barely contained energy. When Aly stops short he continues forward, answering the question with a /swoop/ of strong arms around her, a hug fierce-tight enough to scoop Aly up and off her feet for a moment.

/Possibly/ to Micah's chagrin; that shoulder really /isn't/ healed yet and the motion comes with a noticeable twitch, a catch of breath that does not stop his subsequent rush of words. "-- oh my /gosh/," comes tumbling out just about at the moment Aly's words stop, "/Oh/ my gosh where did you even /come/ from because I swear I was /jus'/ havin' a dream about you -- well not /about/ you but /in/ it you'd -- moved back an' here you /are/ an' this is nuts New York's been /full/'a crazy lately an' now I kinda feel like someone waved a magic wand an' conjured you right outta /dreams/ an' are you really here for /good/-for real?-- oh /goodness/ you been travellin' all day? Do you need /food/ let me get you food --" It's only here that he remembers to set Aly down, turn around to gesture to Micah with a sudden flush in his cheeks. "-- /Oh/ gosh you ain't even met my -- husband. Micah. He's. Pretty much the best of all husbands."

Micah just looks back and forth between the two like a puppy watching two children pass a ball back and forth, head tilted slightly in confusion. "Who's...?" His brow furrows as Jax starts with the vigorous hugging and lifting of people. "Jax! You're still /hurt/. Don't you go injurin' that shoulder any worse." He smiles sheepishly at that introduction, a hint of a blush dusting across his cheeks and the bridge of his nose. "Um...hello? Nice t'meet you. I'm...guessin' y'all know each other on account of how Jax's tryin' t'hurt 'imself in the huggin' of you. Evenin' Come on in. Let me help you with your bags." Micah crouches to collect the bags even as Aly quits herself of them, relocating them to the living room instead of the doorway.

<< /Tell/ me you're not crazy enough to be starting a fucking coffee shop. >> Unfortunately for all the current occupants of Lighthaus, Hive is /also/ still awake at this hour. His mental voice comes slamming in in its usual abrasive fashion -- there's nothing quiet or /delicate/ about the raw sledgehammer /thud/ of mental energy that brings his words crashing in. Somewhere /beneath/ the mental assault he sounds -- much as he ever does. A little bit /gruff/, voice coming with the same odd mutt-accent he speaks in, distinctly Not From New York but past that too mangled to easily place.

"--the airport," Aly answers, because Aly is a //butt//, "and San Jose, and there were stops but I don't want to remember them anymore," it all kind of gets a bit muffled-muted into Jackson's shoulder before he puts her //down//, because she is starfish-clinging with all her might prior. "I was working on it," she admits, "before Shane called me -- um, so, by the way Shane called me and I //might// have asked him if he needed a //business partner//, so," sweet lord, does she actually need to stop for air? Apparently not. Her smile is radiant, even as //kind of obviously// jetlagged as she is, a little faint-shadowed under the bright-bright green of her eyes. "//Micah//," is delighted, just shy of a squeal, "I have heard nothing but good things -- Aly, I'm Aly, sorry, I went to school with Jax he's like--" she doesn't finish that sentence, but there is a bright bubble-burst-pop of overwhelming affection that skitter-skates across the surface of her thoughts, rather than making it into actual out-loud words. Which is also how, << Just that crazy! >> gets THOUGHT in the direction of the ... //other person// now involved in the conversation; it's echoed, cheerful-chirruped, "//Just// that crazy," out loud.

"-- oh my gosh. You've talked to Shane -- wait so is this crazy idea of his actually gonna --" Jackson does actually stop here, with a small sheepish duck of his head that tumbles shaggy hair down over his eye. "... I forgot the shoulder because there was /hugs/ that needed to -- oh /right/ gosh Micah, Aly. Aly, Micah -- look /everything/ from these dreams is jus' /happenin'/ now. Well okay no Luci wasn't /in/ Pippin but that show was still amazin' --" For a moment his bright happy rush of thoughts is interrupted by that sudden slam of mental voice and he winces, rubbing at the back of his neck as he curls his /other/ arm through Aly's to lead her further inside. "-- I'm makin' brownies, you're /havin'/ brownies. But real food first? There's black bean soup I can heat up in the fridge, um, I /apologize/ for our --" He tips his head up towards the ceiling. "We got a telepath. He. Hears. Things -- Micah," he says as though Aly has not /just/ said this: "Shane /called/ her, she's gonna be his /business/ partner."

"Oh. Oh, Aly! I've heard of you a little bit, too." Micah nods, the recognition dawning on his face and banishing...the better half of the confusion that had resided there instead. Once his arms are free again, he returns to offer Aly a hug. "You're...really movin' back to New York an' y'wanna re-open Evolve with Shane? Are you /sure/ y'didn't just manifest here? But that's...amazin'. We was...kinda pie-in-the-sky hopin' that someone might be willin' t'help 'im with that. T'be fair, though, did Shane tell ya how dangerous a proposition this particular business is likely t'be? I mean, yeah-crazy, but we prefer /informed/ crazy, generally." He nods at the talk of telepaths. "Hive. Would be the one talkin' in your head." << Y'could come /down/ an' introduce yourself so she's got a /face/ t'talk to, y'know. >> The tea kettle begins to whistle then. "Ohgosh, my water's boilin'. Anybody want tea? I was just makin' a rooibos an' lavender for me on account of it's late..." He shifts sidewise and eventually makes his way back into the kitchen to switch off the heat under the kettle.

<< You know that place is going to /attract/ firebombing, right. -- Faces are overrated. >> Though even so it's pretty much /as/ Hive is saying this that there's a rattle of doorknob; it takes him a moment to actually /get/ the door open. /Presumably/ the man who enters -- middling-tall, kind of /emaciated/-thin, with faded jeans fraying heavily where they drag over his socked heels, t-shirt with Zelda's Link sitting in Eddard Stark pose on an Iron Throne fashioned out of video-game swords, fleecey soft blue cap dotted with red stars pulled down over his ears -- is the one attached to the voice.

His << I mean there's fucking crazy and then -- >> breaks off into actual spoken words as he nudges the door behind him with a heel, "-- fucking crazy. Man, Flicker's gonna flip his shit. You're a /real/ Alyssa and not some kinda fucking -- dream -- manifested -- Aly?" He has hands shoved into the pockets of his jeans, unsteadily /slouching/ his way across the living room to drop into a heavy lean draped up against the back of the armchair.

"Soup sounds amazing, anything that didn't come out of a vending machine or one of those little," Aly has one arm threaded through Jackson's, so that leaves her only the one to gesture vaguely with: somehow, she still manages to create the impression of //airline food//. "You know the ones." She extracts herself from Jackson, a moment's reluctance to actually let him go lost in the exuberance of her hug for //Micah//. "I solemnly swear there were //lots// of planes involved, I didn't just apparate here -- that's the plan, though." Muffled, into shirts and into shoulders: she hugs all solid-body and face-smooshy before finally extracting herself again. This time, it's do divest herself of outer-wear: she may have had several years' residency in New York, but traveling //from// California, the temperature is still -- chilly. Once divested, though, she is -- in jeans, a faint hint of sparkle in the fabric itself echoed in the glitter-print of the lettering on her t-shirt. (Which declares, and proudly, 'I <3 My Porny'). "I know - that it's a hell of a bigger risk doing it here, no matter how well Carter's did, but I didn't //know// what I was going to do, and -- I've done it, the business part, and he was just going to do it //anyway// so this way-" there's the off-chance it doesn't actually fail. "Hi," eventually gets directed at Hive, her grin broad, "totally a realio-trulio genuine actualfax Aly, in the flesh, I am totally going to hug you, too, unless you tell me not to," and over her shoulder, to Jax, "Look, //asking//!" that carries the slightly self-directed, slightly-jubilant tone of a lesson drilled in by rote. "No-one else knows I'm here yet," she adds. To the room at large.

"Ohgosh. Lavender-rooibos, that sounds wonderful, honey-honey." Jackson /also/ reluctantly relinquishes his claim on Aly so that he can continue into the kitchen and finish transferring his brownie batter into /baking/ dish, sliding it into the preheated oven while Hugs are being dispensed. "Faces are /so/ not overrated 'specially not when they're pretty as yours -- /why/ are faces overrated?" Jackson is glibly commentating on this even if he's only heard one half of the exchange, leaning up against the kitchen counter now to swipe a finger through leftover brownie batter and suck it off his fingertip.

"-- Hive'll grouse at you but he loves hugs. Should give him a /big/ squeezey one." He swipes his finger through batter again, this time offering it up to Micah for the tasting. Kind of /spicy/ cayenne-laced chocolate goop. "-- Oh my /gosh/ wait did you jus' fly cross-country with -- movin' back here without /no/ plans 'cept join Shane on this crazy-face idea cuz -- that's," he decides with a brighter grin, "/awesome/ -- oh /goodness/ d'you even have a place to /stay/?" His eye is already sweeping his own apartment. /Appraisingly/.

"Hey, Hive!" Micah calls with a wave when the telepath enters, even though they were /just talking/ mentally moments before. Then he disappears below the counter, ducking down to retrieve additional tea-making supplies to set up a cup for Jax. He turns the heat on under the kettle for a few moments to bring the water back to full-boiling before pouring it into the mugs. "It's an amazin' an' wonderful coincidence that you're here, honey," he chatters back at Aly from the kitchen. "Handily enough, there's gonna be these /awesome/ houses that are totally friendly t'persons with genetic enhancements I heard rumour might be showin' up soon... An' look, sometimes y'just gotta pack everythin' up an' head t'another state with nothin' but a business plan in your pocket." A huge, lopsided grin overtakes his features with that comment, causing him to miss the chocolate being directed toward his face as he turns again. He ends up with a chocolate smear across his lips before actually taste-testing the concoction. "Thanks, hon...that's kinda amazin'-delicious. Think I mighta just got turned into Gloppy the Chocolate Monster, though." Apparently the only solution for this is to come after Jax with sticky-messy lips. Kisses?

"What the fuck is this bullshit," is Hive's grumbled answer to the question of Hugs, though it may be noted that he grumbles this /while/ half-turning from the couch with one arm lifting to pull Aly into a tight but bony sharp-angled hug. "And what the fuck is a Porny." His brows furrow further before he adds: "... and did you move out here /because/ Shane had a dream about you two running Evolve?"

He snorts at Micah's comment, shaking his head as his hand drops back to his side and /he/ drops back to a heavy slouching lean against the chair. "And Aly doesn't even have a fucking -- fucking --" His eyes scrunch shut and in place of words, a thudding mental image of Micah's TARDIS-blue van with its racing-wheelchair-gorilla logo crashes into the others' minds. "... thing. To live in. -- Jegus we just broke ground this /morning/ I'm going to need time to get the houses /up/. Still needs a bed until then. We have a spare," he muses, "but our apartment's a messy shithole and you'd have to share with Dusk which is, uh." This thought is left unfinished, just a snort at the end of his sentence.

"I like faces!" is batted back kitchen-directiony, but Aly is momentarily //busy//, because there is //more hugging// happening: she is not at all bony, but kind of starfish-y in her cling and squeeze and general //smooshfaceyness//. "I didn't," she says, and also, "I don't," and it's all kind of muffled before she pulls her face away from Hive's shirt and steps away, a step-away step, and scrubs both hands over her face. "Okay, um, I //think// that Shane's plan was probably to, like, try to hide me under his bed or something until someone noticed, but I will -- stay wherever there is space, if you don't mind, I mean, I am good with couches, I--" she actually TAKES the deep breath, this time, drops her hands away from her face. "Lemme start over -- I've been working out selling Carter's for the past few months, 'cause," she glances at Jackson, a little pointed, a little homesick, "reasons. //Originally//, my plan was to finalize the sale and then do apartment-hunting online, and maybe get one of you guys to vet places for me in-person, and then move with all my everything once I had a place, but," she chews on her lip, and does a quick and slightly guilty glance around the room kind of thing, "I sorta. Accelerated. The plan. After I talked to Shane."

"A porny is like a My Little Pony," Jackson explains with a sudden deep flush, a stifled laugh that might have to do with My Little Porny or might have to do with the chocolate-sticky husband coming after him, "-- only but they're more, uh, insertable -- an' vibratey an' --" His blush is brilliant red and his words end in a turn of his face to catch kisses against his /mouth/ instead of against his cheek. "-- You taste good in chocolate flavour. Um -- gosh, y'know, you really wouldn't even /hafta/ hide under his bed, the pups ain't never /here/ on account'a they live at school during the week so once their spring break is over that room's pretty much just empty -- oh gosh Micah-honey-sir you should stop me I'm jus' /offering/ our house. Um. /Again/."

A-ha! Sticky kisses! Micah shares his chocolate-mess rather liberally. "Don't need a van t'live in when y'got friends t'give y'extra space for a bit," he counters Hive once he has /mouth/ back for the speaking. "Not hurryin' y'honey. I just the long-term solution, not the immediate one." He lofts one eyebrow at the vibrating pony descriptions...or at least that's what he's taking away from it. "An'...honey, if you'd recall right about when I first met you, this place was full wall-to-wall with refugees. An' we've done that again /since/ I started livin' here an' I ain't never complained on it none, have I? Think I can handle /one/ friend stayin' 'round for a couple months." His chuckling-amused reply is interrupted by a sudden thought. "Oh. Just a heads-up that /our/ lease is up in May, too." Then the tea is done and he's busy removing and rinsing out tea balls. "You want agave in yours or somethin', hon?"

"A porny is a fucking /what/?" Hive's brows raise, too, the crooked quirk of his mouth trapped somewhere between incredulous and amused. "Are you for real, because -- wouldn't Hasbro get /all/ up in your ass for -- well." For a moment his smile evens out into a quick-sharp grin. "/Metaphorically/." He moves around away from the back of the chair to slump himself down properly /in/ the armchair, sinking in with a relieved breath. "You can have our couch till the kids go back to school. There's /three/ teenagers here till break's done so it's a --" He shakes his head. "I mean, you can have Dusk's extra bed, too. It's just there's usually a /pretty/ high chance Dusk's gonna be fucking someone in there so you might /want/ the couch instead he will give /no/ fucks if there's a visitor in his room I don't think he understands modesty. -- Wait, fuck, is your lease up /end/ or beginning of May? Because your house probably won't be liveable till June."

"It was before the reboot," Aly is quick to inform, "and they were a product line designed to compete with, um, the I Rub My Duckies, and they're," oh, here's a point of pride: she tips her chin up and straightens her shoulders just a touch and doesn't actually blush at //all// under all of those freckles as she says, "my first actual design -- I was working in advertising, but everyone got to submit stuff for that, and," and there are //t-shirts//. "The designs were //reminiscent// of the My Little Ponies, but none of the color schemes or anything matched anyone copyrighted, we //totally made sure//, there were tons of lawyers and stuf-- um, anyway." She pulls her braids over her shoulders, curls her fists around the ends and idly swings her arms for a moment before deciding, "I'll take your couch," directed at Hive. "For now, anyway -- I really //am// planning on getting my own place once I've got stuff figured out, but I'll help with rent until I do, and--" her rambling draws to a stop, and she just sort of -- watches -- Jackson and Micah in the kitchen, and ends up taking over Hive's old position against the back of the chair, because it is a place to be. "Sorry, I'm totally rambling -- um. It's -- really nice, though. To be back. Here." Presumably New York.

"Oh-ho, if you're gonna be helpin' out on rent half of folks around here might /fight/ over you, New York's had a bit'a /rough/ patch lately. -- S'end'a May, no worries. Hive's designed us like -- the most /amazin'/ new place, Aly, you got no idea, you should see his work we're basically gonna be livin' in paradise. An' there's gonna be /plenty/'a space /there/." Jackson swipes his tongue across his lips, cleaning off the secondhand chocolate-mess as he moves to the sink to wash out the bowl and measuring cups and spatula and other Brownie Accoutrements.

"-- Jus' cuz you're /crazy/-tolerant of me don't mean you should /hafta/ be," he adds with a crooked smile to Micah. "An' oh-gosh /all/ the agave." Some part of the back of his mind is thinking over how between Ian's never-filled-vacancy and Hive's stacking medical bills probably Geekhaus could /use/ the extra rent /most/, though; his teeth wiggle against one lipring as he looks over Hive, pulling his gaze sharply away from (too-bony) form before he can start straying into too much Fret. "Dusk --" His cheeks have flushed dark again. "Their house is probably, um, better too anyway for, uh, well we kinda got a /smallthing/ --" His chin tips towards Spencer's closed bedroom door, "so it's like alternatin' too-noisy an' shh-quiet-it's-after-bedtime." A small smile crosses his expression, a blossoming warmth flooding bright in his mind. "... s'really nice. T'have you /home/."

"So many couches. I'm /sure/ you'll be set. An' like Jax says, when the twins go back t'school their whole room is empty most of the time." Micah pauses to lick the last remnant chocolate from his lips. "An' /end/ of May. Sorry t'panic you, Hive." On his way to retrieve the agave, he stops over at Jax's side to bonk his shoulder lightly into the other man's. "Y'know me. Just gonna love an' tolerate the heck outta you." He adds a /kind of/ ridiculous amount of the sweetener to Jax's cup and a small squeeze into his own. "Though, hm. Might could change most people's opinion on that decision after /meetin'/ Dusk," he comments with a bit of a wink and...a significant deepening of his own blush. It really doesn't matter /who's/ making the comments. There is going to be blushing.

"Oh. End." Hive exhales a heavy relieved breath. "Shit, good. OK. By /June/ I'll have you set. Hopefully -- there /is/ a shit-ton of extra space around the Commons," he agrees with a tipped-up glance to Alyssa. "Extra units, extra rooms, whatever. You could keep living under Shane's bed, their place has -- space." Slowly, he pushes himself up from the chair, wobbly-unsteady as he gets back to his feet. The comments about Dusk earn a quick snort. "My roommate is /going/ to hit on you just so you're forewarned. It's inveterate he does it to everyone. But, uh, nobody seems to fucking -- fucking --" His eyes scrunch shut again, knuckles digging at them. << ... if you're really starting Evolve back up, >> thuds back into everyone's minds more pensively, << I wonder how much of all these dreams are set to -- >> But here he just cuts himself off again, shoulders tightening inward as he turns for the door. "We're in 403. Come up -- whenever the fuck, nobody up there /sleeps/."

"You're just trying to keep me close so that you don't lose track of me again, aren't you?" Aly's lightly teasing, but there's something warm in the words directed at Jackson, something warm and a little bit sad too. "It is -- it's good to be home." Her smiles are a little bit tireder now that the initial rush of being SURPRISE!Aly has worn off, but they're no less brilliant for it. "Um. Much as I love you, and much as I'm sure I'll love you," second one, directed at Micah, "I think small-child-ness may have me taking up the offer of the Hive-and-Dusk couchsurfing. Um." Speaking of, she tips and twits a little bit to watch Hive getting up and going, "Should I -- no, nevermind, I'll ask that later, um, //thank you//, by the way, 'cause I know you just met me and all -- I'll probably be up after food happens." A moment's consideration, and she adds, "If not, though, I'll just -- yell," with a tap of her fingers against her temple. "If that works."

"Flicker's up there too," Jackson comments offhand, transferring his cleaned dishes to the drying rack and rinsing his hands clean; he wipes them on a dishtowel hung on the oven door and turns to claim his ridiculously over-sweetened cup of tea. And then immediately put it /right/ back down again with a startled-remembered, "Oh! /Oh/ gosh food I promised food." He glances at the oven timer on the brownies but then goes to the fridge for real /non/-sugar food, opening it to pull out a large tupperware of soup. He sets a pot on the stove for reheating. "-- Y'might just want to swing by down here 'round mealtimes because I've /seen/ their fridge it has nothin' but two-week-old takeout an' ketchup." His cheeks flush dark again at Micah's comments. Maybe on loving him. Maybe on /Dusk/.

“People do so sleep up there. /I've/ slept up there. Your apartment comes with really soft wing-cuddles. Pretty sleep-inducin'...eventually. You'll totally be allowed to sleep there,” Micah reassures, cheeks still reddening. “Though, yeah, there's no food t'be had up there most days. We kinda...have an open-door policy on meals, though, so y'don't have t'stay here t'eat here.” He nods at Aly's explanation. “Livin' with kids ain't for everybody, I get that.” He hides the small frown at Hive's silent-thought behind his tea mug.

"I'll hear," Hive agrees with Aly's finger-tap, slouching off towards the door. "I always do." He fumbles at the door handle a moment, tugging it open and heading back out.

It's only a few minutes later that a thudding mental crack slams back in: << ... by the way. Welcome home. >>