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Re: Gamers' Night (Zane)

PostPosted: Sat Aug 11, 2018 1:59 pm
by Adam Newbury
The anxiety he live with constantly was slowly settling down. Gaming was his own escape from reality that caused his anxiety to flare. In gaming, he didn’t have to worry about judgements. He was good at games and he knew his confidence was real. He didn’t have to look at people’s faces, trying to read body language or worry about if they were getting bored listening to him. If they didn’t want to talk to him or play with him, they could simply log off or go do a different part of the game. So, if they were still around, he could trust, mostly, that they still wanted to be around. Adam wsn’t that confident when he first started and those who knew him back then had had to deal with his stutter for a long time, but it was almost non-existent now. It came out most of the time in real life. It was worse the more anxious and uncomfortable he was. The only time it went away almost completely was when he was gaming, especially with his guild. He’d been with them for a long time and felt very comfortable with the core group. The newbies he ignored to some extent. Not in a ‘being arrogant or mean’ way, but they weren’t safe to him. Once they got involved enough that they started really interacting with the core group, Adam was able to push past his issues to talk to them some.

So it was weird with Zane…. He knew him from gaming and quite confident with him in game… but this whole real world connection and both being leopards and this truemates thing…. That was enough to trigger all sorts of anxiety. He couldn’t quite figure out how to blend the two parts of his interactions with Zane… it probably would take a long time for him to work on it. Adam’s eyes lit up as Zane mentioned trying to get the Staff of Tecus. That would be amazing. “That would be sufficient payment,” he teased in chat. Oh he would never say no to such a payment, but he would have summoned anyone for free anyway. He finished off his hot chocolate and set his cup out of the way.

Adam looked over at Zane again. “I know I’m the best, so why shouldn’t I say so?” In a move that was very bold on his part, Adam reached over and snatched one of the beef jerkys Zane had put between them. Yes, likely Zane had put them there to share, but for Adam to actually take one without having been told explicitly that he was allowed one, it was very brave of him to take one. He had the piece in his mouth for a first bite when Zane suggested a prize. He was stunned at the idea… all of the idea. “I...I…. r-really? Y-you’d do that?” He know what he looked like as a kitty. Cody had taken pictures and some videos of him, so Adam could see them. As an Ulfric, he could resist the shift for a while after Adam had been overpowered by the call of the moon. But to see someone else. To see how he was the same and different from his own kind.

Adam swallowed and set the jerky down before he managed to choke himself on it. “Wh-what do you w-want if you w-win?” Adam didn’t like shifting much. It hurt and it made his leopard side very loud and it reminded him how lost and alone he felt. Even with Cody, his leopard was very well aware he was a wolf and not a leopard. It desperately wanted his own kind. Right now, as he thought of that idea, he very, very much wanted to curl up with Zane, to not feel alone anymore. Adam was afraid that deep ache of loneliness was showing on his face, so he turned back to stare at the screen, though he wasn’t at all registering what was going on in game.

Re: Gamers' Night (Zane)

PostPosted: Sat Aug 11, 2018 3:15 pm
by Zane Silva
Zane was that outgoing person in the guild. Pretty much the welcome wagon sort. He was usually the one raid-training the newbies and helping feel out the prospects for the team. Usually a game of 'Follow the Kitty' ensued to test out new healers and tanks. If they could manage to keep him out of mischief or heal him through it then it was a good sign. It was hard not to be absolutely dying when running content with him. There was plenty of instances where the words of impending doom were heard over voice. 'Where'd the druid go?' Often followed by him shooting back into range with a return of 'I made friends!' He admittedly wasn't the best tank but he was often sturdy enough to fill in. He wasn't very patient so tanking wasn't his forte. He had joined the guild at the beginning of Cataclysm and had been with them ever since.

He chuckled at the immediate acceptance of his payment. If the loot system was forgiving he'd actually be able to do that. "Though that might be sealing my fate if I do that." He teased out of the chat and smirked at the leopard next to him. Zane was a super social creature and having a gaming buddy right next to him was his favorite way to play. Usually he'd sit with their raid lead when the man was at the cafe, tonight he just happened to find far more superior company. He bounced a bit in his seat, typical for the very high-energy person that he was. The raid leader was going over the schedule for the fights having them re-clear in case good loot dropped to help them at the end. Zane had already figured as much as this was the first night of the new lockout. Hopefully they could just kill Mar'gok and be done with it so they could start farming achieves.

He gave an exaggerated roll of his eyes at the tease from Adam and chuckled as he took the invitation to share the snack. Protein was very important so he always snacked through several bags of jerky during game nights. “Oh here we go. I'm not gonna play nice. You want it you better be ready to fight me for it all night.” He gave a nod as it seemed the other was very taken by his offer. “Of course. We grab some raw meat first and then you can have an oversized house-cat for an evening. I like belly rubs and promise not to claw the furniture. I'm fully in control.”

He caught that he was in the stands group and confirmed he heard his assignment while he considered Adam's question. He wondered if his request would be too much but it was what he wanted. He didn't know how comfortable or not with touch the other was after all. The only thing he was going off of was that this was the first meeting of another leopard and truemate complications had heightened that considerably. ”If I win....I want a kiss.” Zane wasn't one for being shy.

Re: Gamers' Night (Zane)

PostPosted: Sat Aug 11, 2018 6:32 pm
by Adam Newbury
He was really drawn to the idea of being able to see another kitty. He and his leopard seemed to be on the same page about this idea. It built a fire in him to win this contest tonight to get that prize. He wanted this very badly. Most of the time, Adam ignored his leopard’s need to be around others. The human part of him had so many issues with people… lack of confidence, his stutter, and hating touch. If he had his choice, he would be in his own personal bubble forever and never see anyone except through online communication. Cody had told him that if he did that, he would kill his leopard, but he didn’t really understand that…. But he had been starting to admit there was something going on with this meeting of Zane. But! But Zane said he wanted a kiss. Adam’s brain stuttered to a halt. He couldn’t have said if he was loving the idea or wanting to hide. Both sides mixed together. He couldn’t form a proper thought for a moment. So Adam’s leopard took advantage. “Yes!” came the answer with a kitty growl. His leopard wanted more contact, more touch, more everything. This was his truemate!

Adam coughed as he regain his thoughts. His cheeks were bright red and he shoved the beef jerky in his mouth to keep that damn inner cat from causing any more trouble. Thankfully, the raid leader finished all the arrangements and called them all to head off for riches and glory! Adam had never been so glad to get lost in the game in his life.

-------------------------- [Hours Later]------------------------------

Adam leaned back in his chair with a satisfied grin. That had been a wonderful session. He had had a lot of fun and there had been some very memorable moments. He stretched a bit, working out kinks from sitting so long. He rubbed the back of neck and rolled his shoulders. He finished off the last of his water bottles, that he had brought with him in his bag. Adam glanced over at Zane and offered him a smile. “That was a great run.” He had relaxed again as they had played, not worrying about real life when there was gaming to do. Now it was the waiting to see the raid stats, to see if he won or if Zane won. He closed his eyes and leaned his head against the wall, as a yawn was pulled from him. As much fun as he had gaming, it was intense. He was ready to relax a bit.

Eventually, a call came over the headset that the stats were up. Adam sat up quickly and found the stats. “Damn… so close!” Zane had beaten him! He was so close to beating him but the sneaky little kitty had beaten him! Adam groaned softly. That meant….. Adam looked over at Zane, realizing that him winning, that meant he won a kiss from Adam. His leopard liked the idea, but the human’s cheeks still ended up stained red in a blush. “Damn, I-I guess-s y-you won… C-congrats-s.” He hated his stuttering, but he hadn't ever been able to get rid of it. It didn’t matter how hard he tried. He hoped Zane wouldn’t think less of him for it. Adam licked his lips nervously. He really hoped Zane wouldn’t want his prize in the middle of the cafe.

Re: Gamers' Night (Zane)

PostPosted: Sun Aug 12, 2018 1:20 am
by Zane Silva
Zane noticed that his prize had rather shut the other down. When the kitty seized the opportunity he gave a deeply amused laugh. He returned a soft growl to let the kitty know he was pleased and his own beast happily preened. Adam of course seemed to completely be unable to reconcile what had just happened. Finding himself wondering why that was he was almost tempted to ask. However this wasn't the place for a serious conversation and they were quickly called to raid anyhow. Maybe he could get that invitation back to the other leopard's place afterward and ask then. Talking wasn't all he had on his mind of course but at the reaction to his request of a kiss he doubted the other was anywhere near being able to accept more.

The run went amazingly smooth and they did get several really close attempts on Mar'gok. He had also managed to get the staff and turn it over to Adam as he said he would. Damn thing procced a socket too. They had fought hard back and forth the whole night and by the time it was done win or lose he didn't think he could have given any more. While Adam relaxed he listened to the chatter as everyone wound down. He chuckled and nodded at the words. “Fuck yes it was. I don't think I have ever fought that hard to top the meters. You seriously had me sweating it at every turn and you really kicked my ass on Twins.” The yawn was adorable. He wanted to snuggle him and curl up for sleep together.

When he heard the logs were processed he was as excited to see them as Adam was. He gave a low whistle. “Holy shit look at our rankings too. I may have gotten the higher dps but not by much and you have me for total damage done.” Just as he looked over the other seemed to realize what it meant and the stutter was back. He bit his lip and again the need to know prickled in the back of his mind. He inclined his head to accept the congratulations and was interrupted by the raid lead calling them both over Mumble and saying whatever they did to do it again cause their dps was phenomenal. Zane chuckled and gave Adam a wink. He'd let the other decide if he wanted to say anything.

”How about we do both? Let's get out of here and we can go back to your place I would assume? I can claim my prize and then show you what a Zane in kitty form looks like.” He wrapped up what he needed to in-game and said his good-nights. Tucking his character back into her garrison he closed out the game and began to pack up.

Re: Gamers' Night (Zane)

PostPosted: Sat Aug 18, 2018 12:45 pm
by Adam Newbury
Adam was distracted as their raid leader called their names and praised their ratings for this raid. A pleased smile broke out on his face, basking in the praise that was being given to him. That wasn’t something he had ever had much of in his life. His parents had never approved of anything he did. There were times his father even yelled at him for how he breathed and stood. His professors at college had been busy with a ton of students to give him much praise, though he got some. Only Cody had been supportive and encouraging. He was proud of Adam… but he was gone. Adam toggled to Mumble. “See what happens when I get bribes of loot? Maybe if you bribe me more, I’ll be inspired for such displays!” He said quick goodbyes and started shutting down his system. He saw Zane doing the same next to him and resigned himself to having to deal with the real world again. It wasn’t anything against Zane, it was just Adam was never comfortable in the real world. And Zane’s presence had brought a whole new realm of the real world that he had no knowledge of or how to handle.

The young beta cocked his head to one side as he considered Zane’s proposition. He could still see Zane as a leopard? That would be amazing. He wouldn’t admit it, but he was desperately eager to see what someone else looked like as a cat. Cody had said Adam had looked like an average leopard, but he hadn’t seen many, so maybe he was wrong. Maybe Adam was as much a weirdo in cat form as he was in human form. He nodded and packed away the rest of his stuff. “M-my place is a-a mess...s-still un-unpacking.” He swallowed and tried to calm down his anxiety and his stutter. I, uh… You can come over, though. I-I have a b-bunch of m-meat, too. I-If you g-get hungry a-after.”[/wereleopard].

He stood and slung his bag over his shoulder, then nudged his chair in with his foot. Adam waited for Zane to stand before moving towards the door and out to the street to walk to his apartment. It wasn’t too far for him to walk and he preferred to walk there if there was a choice. Adam could drive, but liked to walk if possible. “Oh… I, uh, I d-don’t h-have internet y-yet. Th-they sc-screwed up th-the order… but, w-wouldn’t let m-me d-do it my-myself.” It didn’t sound like Zane intended to need internet tonight but Adam felt he needed to warn him, just in case. He didn’t want Zane to get mad.

Re: Gamers' Night (Zane)

PostPosted: Sat Aug 18, 2018 7:31 pm
by Zane Silva
It was adorable as all hell watching Adam bask in the praise from their raid leader. He burst out laughing at the sass thrown back and shook his head. "Hey now, don't go getting all ahead of yourself there. Though that was a much more fun way to improve my dps than the usual methods. Thanks to that bribe I get the feeling I don't have a chance Thursday night." He teased back outside of the chat. While the raid lead knew they were sitting together, he had a feeling Adam didn't want the entire guild in on things just yet. Truthfully it didn't bother Zane, but if it bothered Adam that was another story altogether. His beast wouldn't appreciate him doing things that upset their truemate.

He cleaned up his spot and shouldered his bag, crossing it over his chest so it would stay put. Waiting patiently for the other to pack up he texted their raid lead back. When Adam spoke up he returned his full attention to the other leopard. "It'll be fine. Moving is unpleasant work. I've done my fair share of it. Or maybe more than that. Though I am sure now that you put face to screen name you recall the saga of my never being able to stay in one place long." He chuckled as they headed out, tossing a covert wink to the raid leader as he threw his trash away. He earned a dramatic eyeroll from the other man.

"That sucks about the internet on one hand. Though had you not been forced to come here we might not have met and my kitty would be sad." He slid an arm trough one of Adam's as the other indicated the right direction to go. Zane was quite content to chatter happily while they walked. "Meat will be good. I'm usually in serious need of noms after I shift.” He fell into idle chatter about Boston and the pard while they walked after that. He was content to fill the space with bubbly conversation, not seeming to be bothered by it being rather one-sided.

It seemed before he knew it Adam was stopping them and they were ducking into a building. ”Nice place. If it wasn't for living at the pard House I'd probably have some hole in the wall place I was paying way too much rent for.” He didn't seem bothered by the boxes still sitting about and he found a spot to put his laptop bag down. Turning a curious look to the younger beta he tilted his head, golden eyes revealing a question swirling in his mind. ”When I do this, do you want to watch the whole process? Also should do it where it's easy to clean up. Shower maybe?”

Re: Gamers' Night (Zane)

PostPosted: Sat Sep 01, 2018 1:04 pm
by Adam Newbury
As they walked down the street towards Adam’s place, he fought with increasing anxiety about having Zane alone in his apartment. Adam didn’t have visitors, except Cody back home, and he was not so good with small talk and all that social stuff. Plus there was that whole kissing situation that was coming closer. He didn’t want to make a fool of himself, especially since this whole Truemate thing meant he and Zane were going to be together for a very long time. He still wasn’t entirely convinced about them being truemates, but he wasn’t going to say that outloud. He didn’t want to make Zane upset or get mad at him. Plus, his leopard was acting so strangely around Zane and he needed to understand what was going on with that, if it wasn’t this truemates thing.

And then Zane put his arm through one of his and his leopard felt so contented that it soothed a lot of the anxiety that was starting to bubble up in his gut. His kitty felt safe and liked the touch and it was so much stronger than Adam’s usual aversion to touch, then he actually liked the contact a little, too. It was a very weird sensation that he couldn’t find the brainpower to keep up his side of the conversation. That didn’t seem to be a problem as Zane chattered on and on as they walked. A smile tugged at the corner of Adam’s lips as he just lived in the moment of calm and safe.

When they arrived at his apartment, Adam led him up to the second floor. His apartment was in the back, which he liked. And the second floor wasn’t too high to jump down from the balcony, if he needed to. Adam set down his bag next to the couch and made sure the door was locked behind him. “I-I have three bedrooms… if you ever n-needed it.” The words were out of his mouth before he could really think about them, pushed out by his kitty. Adam’s eyes widened as he realized what he had just offered to someone he just met…. Yes, they knew each other from the guild, but this was different. He blushed and licked his lips before moving into the living room. “Th-The m-master b-bath has a b-big garden t-tub.”

Adam was feeling all the anxiety again, plus embarrassment at what his leopard pushed him to offer to Zane. He crossed his arms over his chest and then pulled them to his sides and then slid them into his pockets, feeling super awkward. “Wh-what kind of m-meat do you w-want? I-I have ch-chcken and ground b-beef and p-pork ch-chops and s-s-steaks.” Adam took a deep breath, telling himself to stop stuttering so much… as if that had ever worked… “S-some of it i-is fr-frozen… I-I can get i-it out t-to thaw b-before w-we do s-stuff.” He waved one hand in a vague motion at the word stuff. He had not forgotten for a second Zane wanted a kiss, too.

Re: Gamers' Night (Zane)

PostPosted: Sat Sep 29, 2018 12:02 pm
by Zane Silva
Zane's cat would have been incredibly pleased, and thus he would have as well, to know they were making the other feel calm and safe. That was their purpose as a truemate, was it not? To make their mate feel safe and cared for? Being quite in tune with his beast as he was there was often little to no deviation between what animal and man felt. That was part of what made his strong. He didn't resist, instead he embraced what he was. His eyes roved over the place, marking the location of the balcony and noting it would be incredibly easy to use it should the need arise. Perks of being a cat.

His golden eyes flicked back to Adam when the younger beta spoke up and he offered a soft, warm smile. That stutter was just adorable and he didn't know why. The reactions he was getting were scatter-shot and he knew that had a great deal to do with nerves and the cat vs. man tug of war going on. He nodded at the offer and the tub would actually work. It would contain most if not all of the mess and be easy to clean up afterward. Were he a fighter of his change it might not, but he accepted the pain and welcomed the change. "That's sweet of you to offer. It depends on if you are fine with me sleeping off my shift here though. The tub will be perfect. I don't fight my shift and you are welcome to watch the full extent of it."

His voice was soft as he prowled into the living room and continued to explore, much like a curious cat taking in it's new surroundings. "Kind doesn't matter. I'm not a picky eater. Whatever is thawed is perfectly fine. Just something to offset the immediate need to hunt. I'll probably still go hunt but I can do that much later on.” He watched all the awkward movements and noted how Adam was trying but this was so very new to him. It did have to be very overwhelming.

Slowly he stepped back over and gave the younger leopard a sligt warning before he moved in close and very gently pulled him into his arms. He made a soft, soothing sound and didn't apply any pressure until the other decided if he was going to relax again or not. ”I know this is very overwhelming, Adam. I'm not going to force you alright? Relax a bit for me. Listen to your cat, he'll guide you in this. You can always trust his instincts.”

Re: Gamers' Night (Zane)

PostPosted: Sat Sep 29, 2018 1:15 pm
by Adam Newbury
Adam was well aware of Zane looking around the apartment. It was like he was hyper alert and so his senses paid attention to every movement. He wasn’t sure if it was because of his strong anxiety flaring up or his cat wanting to track their mate. So, even as he went into the kitchen to get meat, he couldn’t stop noticing when Zane moved or spoke. When the other leopard said he didn’t care what meat, Adam opened the fridge door and started to hunt around for what he had in there. He had a bunch of chicken in one drawer. He knew his kitty liked chicken better because of the crunch and taste of bones, so he pulled out a small mountain of chicken breasts and thighs. He heard every word the other kittye was saying, but he couldn’t get replies out of his mouth right away. He was struggling more than he had in a long time and he didn’t know how to cope. He had built this isolated little bubble so he didn’t have to deal with anxiety and others… and Zane and the truemate thing just bust that bubble wide open. And even worse, was the defenses he usually had against his leopard had shattered and the leopard was very loud and demanding and he couldn’t cope with that either.

So when Zane approached him, he was filled with equal parts intense longing and dread. He wanted the other cat near, needed it… but at the same time, he was afraid one more new thing would crack him. No cracking Adam. It was his number one rule. He felt Zane’s arms around him and felt the gentle tug backwards. He didn’t resist, but the tension flooding his body and mind made him stiff and unresponsive for a few minutes. Zane’s words slipped in and among the anxiety, straight for his kitty. It caused his kitty to push forward more, sharing the deep need to be held, to touch and relax.

Slowly that need wove into Adam’s muscles and they began to relax. Kitty instincts had him turning in Zane’s arms and gently shoving his nose towards Zane’s neck, where the scent of Zane and kitty and coffee were so strong. His arms snaked around his truemate and clung to the back of the man’s shirt. He closed his eyes and just soaked all of this in. The more he did, the more relaxed he felt. It was a huge relief. He hadn’t felt calm since Cody died and even Cody’s hugs hadn’t felt as soothing and right as Zane’s. Was that because he was another leopard or because of being truemates…. Or both?

Finally, his human instincts kicked in a bit, but not enough to make him move away at all. He sighed and spoke in a soft whisper… afraid of admitting things but feeling Zane deserved an answer. “I-I… its h-hard to listen to h-him. H-he wants st-stuff I-I c-can’t…. I-I c-can’t t-touch p-people…. H-H-he wants to…. W-we f-fight… a-a-alot. “ He was tired of fighting with his leopard. He was just tired. But he didn’t know how to overcome all his issues. He was a bad wereleopard, fighting with his beast. Cody had told him many times that the only way to live was to find balance with his cat, to accept it as part of himself. He wasn’t doing a very good job. His cat wasn’t afraid of Zane. His cat wanted to be closer… no stupid human clothes in the way. His cat wanted to kiss Zane… not just once, but lots of times. He wanted to change with Zane and go running and hunting together. He wanted to curl up and nap together. And all of those things freaked Adam out. He didn’t know how to be close to someone like that. It never occurred to him that accepting his kitty, of blending with it more, could ease some of the intense anxiety he struggled with. He assumed that letting his kitty in more would overwhelm his human side.

“But, but you c-can st-stay after the sh-shift… I-I-I d-d-don’t mind.” His kitty wanted the other to stay forever, wanted him to offer that his bed was large enough for a leopard to cuddle with, but he couldn’t say that! He sighed softly. “I-I’m sorry…. I-I’m really f-fucking th-this wh-whole thing up, aren’t I-I? Even though he felt like he screwed up, he kept his nose against the other’s neck, arms tight around the other kitty’s chest as if he would never let go.

Re: Gamers' Night (Zane)

PostPosted: Sat Sep 29, 2018 10:28 pm
by Zane Silva
Easily his senses picked up the smell of the chicken Adam pulled from the fridge to let it come up in temp a bit. Cold was fine but letting it come up a bit closer to room temp was better. His leopard approved and rumbled happily in the back of his mind. He wasn't expecting much in the way of replies. Away from the computer he was noting that Adam was a much quieter soul. This was fine with Zane, he could easily fill a space with chatter as he was often told he was quite the noisy kitty by members of the Pard. It tended to take the burden of conversation off shyer individuals and his effervescent nature had a way of drawing them out of their shell. He could feel more than see Adam tracking him. Was it just the leopard doing it or the man as well? It was still hard to tell.

Adam was very stiff in his arms for several long minutes but Zane didn't draw attention to it. Instead he waited patiently. Slowly the tension bled out and the younger beta turned around and buried his face into the side of his neck. It was an instinct and his own leopard rumbled in approval of the action. He tightened his arms a bit as Adam soaked up the comfort that only he could offer. It was unique in intensity and even Zane was shocked by how it felt. One arm pulled Adam flush against him and the other rubbed comforting circles on his back as he simply stood there, allowing and encouraging the other to take comfort in his presence. He vocally approved with a low purr when he felt the other leopard's arms go around him in return.

The words were soft but to a lycanthrope easily heard as they were pressed against each other anyhow. Certain things made sense, though he wasn't sure why Adam disliked touch as he personally hadn't possessed a personal bubble ever. That would make it difficult though to be a wereleopard as they were probably the most touchy-feely of the lycanthrope strains. Zane didn't know personally what it was like to fight with his beast, he loved his cat and they got along famously. However he knew others who had deeper struggles and had seen how it could be for them. Adam seemed to be one of those. Eventually a breaking point was reached and either they worked it out or something far less pretty occurred. He would not lose Adam to that latter.

The stronger beta had fallen quiet at the shaky words from his truemate but a low growl rumbled out of him at Adam seeming to be down on himself about this. ” No, you are fucking nothing up. Not in the least. I appreciate you trying to be open with me, especially with how hard this seems to be for you. If it makes you feel any better this is completely crazy for me too. This isn't how a typical first meeting with another wereleopard would go. Which I get that you can't equate that out since this is the first of those for you as well. Give yourself time. I can slowly introduce you to the others in the Pard when you are ready.”

Zane kept up the soothing touches, rubbing circles on his back and enjoying the feeling of the other leopard clinging to him. He was meant to protect this one. As much as Adam was dealing with his own leopard, Zane was definitely feeling a strong pull from his own. The difference was that Zane didn't resist those pulls most of the time. Right now he was having to reign his beast in as the human part of him knew Adam could be traumatized if this was taken too quickly. It was already apparently much too quick. ”How about we go sit down and just talk for a bit. I can tell you about how I became a lycanthrope.”