Cerise gets a little love from Nur, who helps him cheer up a bit following his break up with Mei Ming. Their light-hearted conversation puts Cerise at ease so that he is able to face Zaffrea now that she's out of her coma. She is going through a heartbreak of her own as well, although a very different one: depression.
Zaffrea Shanti - 45 EXP (Zaffrea's depression is well detailed, these details displaying a huge turning point for her character.)
Cerise Moani - 20 EXP (Cerise's feelings towards Zaffrea are elaborated on a bit, while his close friendship with Nur is cemented.)
Neeru Nehanth (Nur) - 15 EXP (Nur shows a little more that he doesn't always have to be an asshole, and can actually be quite compassionate.)
Never going to...work out anyway? Did Mei Ming just... break up with him? Well, that much was obvious.. but... it didn't make it any easier to accept. As Mei Ming walked away, not ever bothering to glance back, Cerise who was already on his knees fell over to his hands as well, sobbing as he rather pathetically crawled over the short distance to Nur's legs, craving any sort of comfort he could get. His weeping was periodically peppered with little whimpers and wines, which were... actually quite cute... that is, if you could get over the somewhat ugly expression the crying was imposing onto his face. Cerise was for the most part a beautiful crier, knowing how to be mindful of his expression even when he was overwhelmed with emotion, but right now was a rare moment where all thoughts and preoccupation with maintaining his beauty were just.. simply not there.
Nur was shocked, first by Mei Ming's words as she insulted and degraded both him and Neela back, then shocked when Cerise hit Mei Ming across the face, THEN shocked when Mei Ming up and broke up with Cerise! So his look of shock trailed into Cerise's uncontrollable sobbing. He quickly shook it off, he knew expertly by now how to put Cerise's feelings first, and honestly it was kind of cute to see this side of him, not that the fact that he was crying was any good, all the tears, snot, and scrunched up face though was kinda funny when you thought about it! Nur shook his head again, he knew Cerise was deeply hurting and wanted to help.
He gently leaned down and embraced him warmly, tuning up his semblance just a bit to make him a little more pleasant to touch. He hasn't tried this with Cerise before, only Auric while drying them off from the rain, but it was rather cool out tonight so he thought he would appreciate the physical warmth and a small reminder that it was him. He carefully wrapped Cerise into a bit of a cradle, making sure that his touches were comforting and soft as he lightly decorated Cerise's crying face with kisses to calm him down. He didn't focus on this all too much though instead by talking, "Hey..." he spoke softly, not necessarily getting rid of the raspy aspect of his voice but being gentle sounding, "Cerise, it's okay... Don't cry, it'll be okay. Trust me, you want to know how many times she's 'broken up' with Cole? Believe me, Cole made me keep count!" He lightly chuckled and smiled to cheer him up slightly, "I know I was being an annoying ass as usual, and I'm sorry. But I think you and I both know that girl knows a good thing when she sees it so she won't be letting you go just like that. And I'll be here to make sure you're safe if you need it. And after things settle down a bit, we can work things out with Zaffrea too, I'm here to help.." He continued to cradle Cerise, and nuzzle lightly, waiting for him to be a bit calmer before mentioning Zaffrea, "Listen... I know this is a little overwhelming right now... but I came to get you because I thought you should head on over and say hello to Zaffrea. She won't bite, trust me. She just wants to make sure you're okay and misses you. Don't worry, I won't say anything out of line. What do you say, Cerise, do you think that would be okay?" He spoke a little more gentler and slightly more encouraging when it came to Zaffrea, underneath all the sibling "hate", he did in fact care for his sister but wanted to make sure Cerise was alright too.
Nur's comforting kisses, touch, and soothing voice gradually helped Cerise calm down, his sobbing deescalating into more of the sniffs and whimpers that come with recovery. "You're... warm.. but I guess.. that's to be expected from a boy this steamy... ;) " Cerise said with little sniffs between words as he leaned into Nur's steamy touches, flirting rather badly in an attempt to reciprocate Nur's light tone. He pulled him into a gentle, but long kiss afterwards, not necessarily using tongue but just softly pressing their lips together. At hearing Zaffrea even be mentioned though, Cerise quickly grew a little more tense. "I want to see her too, but... I was also.. scared. With Mei Ming out of the picture though.... I suppose things are a little simpler now anyways." Cerise said, although his voice began to tremble again as he said the last part, with his tone a little more curt.
Nur chuckled a bit more himself now at Cerise's cute but poor flirt, happily kissing back with a bit of love as he continued to nuzzle him to calm him down. "Don't be scared, you'll forget all about that when you see her. But yeah ... things are kind of complicated right now," he admitted, gently coaching Cerise to get up as he couldn't necessarily get up for the both of them without letting go of him, "It's been a little while, but think about how happy you'll both be again!" He began to lead Cerise to the dorm, trying to make some small talk, "You know golden boy, right? Auric? Well I had a little .. moment with him in the rain," he winked at his small exaggeration, but it wasn't as good as Cerise's winks, "Have you been getting along with anyone else?" He was smiling and his tone was friendly and genuinely curious but not in a jealous way as he was completely accepting of the way Cerise was, he rarely complained about it if at all. He made sure his grasp was firm but comforting as he led them, not wanting to scare him off by making some crude joke, but laughing as usual. He walked up to the door and loosed his hold on Cerise but glanced to him to make sure he was alright before opening and leading them inside.
At Nur's encouragement towards how "happy they'd be again", it began to dawn on Cerise that... he hadn't exactly had so many happy moments with Zaffrea, if any... They did.. bond over hair? She did give him a pretty sexy hair cut! And... she did take care of him when he was recovering from the whole torture incident... but he wasn't exactly happy enough to really enjoy it, her comfort leaving him with dull anhedonia at best instead of a deep depression. "Yea..." was all Cerise could say in response, voice obviously doubtful. At the topic of Auric though, Cerise perked back up a little, he loved a little relationship gossip. "Oh?" he said with a smirk, wrapping an arm around Nur from behind his neck. "You know, Auric wouldn't even let ME have a hand at him, you must have done something really special to seduce him! The rain though, that sounds awfully romantic, are you gonna make that boy your boyfriend? That's so cute." Cerise said with a smile, starting to get back his usual confident, accentuated voice as opposed to his sad one. Cerise intentionally made the "cute" part a tad bit condescending though, just to play around a little with Nur; it was often hard not to considering how much of a kid Nur could be, on top of being flat out inexperienced. "As for myself, I did draw in this one guy's interest out at boy's night, do you know Sylvan? He thinks he's straight, but it's such a facade. He liked my hair you know, getting all flustered over me, it was adorable. I haven't really seen him around since then though unfortunately, I guess it just wasn't in the cards! Not that it matters too much, I'm just glad I have you." Cerise said rambling on about his own matters a little bit, giving Nur a little kiss on the cheek at the end. Talking to Nur always helped put him at ease, by the time they reached the dorm door, Cerise was much more relaxed and had gotten Mei Ming off his mind for the most part.
Nur didn't notice the amount of doubt Cerise was feeling in the beginning, after all, he was rejected so badly when they were in their honeymoon phase and Cerise did express immense happiness over Zaffrea before all that ... well before everything happened, maybe all that was clouding his mind, well he didn't want either one of them hurt in all honestly and hoped there was something he could do to either help them towards their relationship or help them end it before someone broke their heart two badly. He put the thoughts aside to talk about with Cerise later as he got all bubbly over talking about other relationships.
Nur didn't jump like Neela did but definitely perked up, voice a little louder to emphasize that, but not unbearbly or annoyingly so, "HAH! Funny," He punched Cerise lightly on the shoulder, but of course it wouldn't hurt even if he actually tried to punch him, "But damn, it was pretty sappy. Me chasing after him in the rain, us getting all emotional, him hiding his expressions in his trench coat and then going off somewhere to dry off~ Well, let's just say I can get anyone hot over me~ heh." He was still exaggerating a bit but this was fun! "Thing is, he has a better thing with Neela, I popped in every now and then on some of their strategic battle chats or ones about games. Hah, dweebs! But it was always 'No, don't hurt Nur, Sable, remember that if we hurt him, we hurt Neela too!" But Sable ended up being a little cheater anyway, like I have nothing against going to other people while being in a relationship, but Auric seemed like he was ready to dedicate his entire life for her to just up and humiliate him like that, and with the deer faunus too, actually Sylvan's girlfriend, I think? Yeah, I kinda have seen blue streak roller blades here and there, he's cool! Honestly I think straightness itself is a facade, Auric was supposedly as straight as they come but he seemed pretty open to me. Too bad it didn't work out with us though! Actually, I scored on guy's night out. Remember that black and white guy I was paying attention to? Well he's part of a multiple thing too! But they're more connected than Neela and myself. Took me out to a movie, never enjoyed one before! I couldn't really ignore his hard on for me either, he seemed really frustrated the whole time but it was really exciting to do it with him and the others! Gods, one of them was REALLY sadistic, but it's okay I'm the biggest masochist you'll ever meet, hah!" He was always one to ramble. He opened the door to the dorm.
Zaffrea looked as beautiful as ever, as though she took a rejuvenating rest as she wore her usual attire but left the sash off, complimenting her slender figure with her tummy peaking out as she seemed busy sewing something, paying no attention to the door opening. She looked rather peaceful, features light, a slight amount of weight loss and hair just a bit more tuffled than normal which she gracefully lifted a delicate hand up to put her hair behind her ear a small jingle from her jewelry as she did so, continuing to pay attention to the shirt she seemed to be altering.
Cerise put on a little bit of an annoyed face as Shiro was mentioned, he of course didn't mind Neeru chasing after other lovers than himself, but just wasn't happy how it resulted in him being out right ignored and neglected on this particular instance. He was about to express his annoyance out loud, to make a petty sort of "That's right, paying attention to him instead of ME in my time of NEED" comment, but only got as far as opening his mouth before Nur had opened the door, revealing Zaffrea. It had been a whole month and a half or so since he last saw her.. alive? Well, conscious. After several weeks since she had first entered the coma though, he was beginning the process of accepting that death may have been a possibility, in the sense that she might never come back. His visits to see her began to occur less and less often, to where he hadn't actually seen her in a week or so from today, as compared to when he would visit her on a daily basis when her condition had first started. Hopefully Zaffrea didn't know that! Seeing her alive and well now though, his heart beat began to accelerate, and he felt ashamed for beginning to lose hope in her... "My love..." he said, gracefully walking over to her; his own beauty would have matched hers, if only his eyes weren't so puffy from crying and hair somewhat messy from literally lying on the ground. "I guess all that praying to the plants payed off.." He said tenderly, as he wrapped his arm around her shoulders from behind and placed a kiss on her ear. The reference to his idiotic action of what he thought of as "praying" when he was only just talking pretty much to himself greatly juxtaposed his serious tone. Not that there was anything wrong with praying to plants, but in Cerise's case he didn't even have a clue of what praying was supposed to symbolize or mean, making him just look like a fool.
Zaffrea had noticed something in the corner of her eye as Cerise approached but did not turn fully by the time he was behind and wrapping his arms around her. She recognized the scent, the touch, the kiss and she felt like she her heart jumped but also felt like she swallowed a pound of lead at the same time. She gulped down, her mouth filling with the taste of saltiness as she felt her heart break all over again. Her breath hitched and sped up drastically as she breathed loudly through her nose, feeling as though she would burst again. She knew it all, actually. Awaking to the eyes of strangers wasn't the worst of it, that she could handle. But what she learned from them afterwards was what made it all the worst. No one knew if Cerise had been visiting her at all. The only person who would have known would have been the old pharmacist she was helping, Patchouli, but Patchouli retired and left Zaffrea on life support in a back room where she was forgotten about. Cannaid deeply apologized for this, she had no idea Patchouli left when she did and she assumed that Zaffrea was taken to a hospital after, otherwise she would have been caring for her. She and Royce confirmed that Cerise was never around Zaffrea after some time, didn't talk about her, didn't express that he missed her according to them. When Nur was brought in for her, they hugged it out for a bit and Nur explained he had no clue what had happened from day 1 and couldn't find anyone to talk to about it since no one seemed to know and Cerise was overwhelmed. Cerise was overwhelmed, huh... But after some aftercare, Nur brought them back to their dorm where he showed her that he had been doing daily prayers for her in her small altar near her bed which cheered her greatly. They talked for hours about what has been happening, Nur explaining how things have progressed with his relationship with Cerise.
Of course, this wasn't something she should have been too particularly surprised about. It was Cerise after all, but it didn't make it hurt any less. At least Nur was toning down his insulting jokes and comments, she really wouldn't have been able to stand for that. For now, she did not want to do anything to confirm or end their relationship and this grey area only put her in a duller and more depressing mood. Sadness began to overwhelm her, her happiness with Cerise was short lived, and she wasn't comfortable with him being so open with their relationship, but wasn't comfortable talking to him about it out of fear. She nonetheless after some time did want to see Cerise and sent Nur out to search for him.
With his arms wrapped around her, she was still gulping rapidly to keep the salty saliva from filling her mouth. It was sinking in, Cerise wasn't there, surely he would have heard that she was awake about five or seven hours ago, but all this time and he never once searched for her. Him not being there every day she could excuse, but this was unbearable. Cerise wasn't there.. Cerise didn't come... Cerise didn't value her... Cerise didn't understand her... Cerise doesn't love her.
With her nostrils flared slightly she was now calming, the feeling of depression oddly satisfying her. It was similar to how cutting would feel, satisfying by the sharp hurt in the beginning but the pain is of course there as well. She settled into absorbing the emotions around her, Cerise's affection, but quite honestly it wasn't much to brag about without it being watered down by Zaffrea's own disappointment and sadness. Nonetheless, this was what she was here for anyway, for others and she solemnly vowed to herself to keep these emotions bottled. She refused to explode, she refused to express the hurt, the pain. She would take it like a warrior and make the people around her happy. Cerise wanted to fuck with her and her emotions? He could. He wanted to love other people? Fine. She wouldn't show that she cared anymore, she would be the "perfect girlfriend" at least that way she could enjoy absorbing Cerise's contentment rather than anger. She learned a lot from Nur, so it would be simple to put caring, compassionate, protecting, and selfless into practice. Fake it until you make it, or so it seemed.
She gently turned, the bed making soft rustly noises from the movement as the world outside them was still. She gently wrapped her arms around Cerise's waist, but of course this grasp was filled with some firmness and strength but definitely filled with genuine love as she nestled her head into Cerise's shoulders, taking in his scent and sighing out of contentment and bliss, using her hand to rub his back in a way that was different than Neela who would be light, her strokes pressed a little more firmly and were nice in a different way. Another hand felt through his soft hair and she held their embrace like that for a bit, too overwhelmed and struggling to keep the depression and sobs at bay to put talking into the equation. She also wanted to enjoy holding him, a lot of thoughts and feelings made this almost impossible, but definitely wanted him to remember the pleasant feeling of her. Nevertheless, she did eventually let him go and pressed their foreheads together for a brief moment, smiling in the most convincing fake way she had ever done, and separated a bit more. She couldn't stand him.