2019-09-20 - You're Right! Sparkling White It Is Then.


Taking some time out after recent excitement, Mari and T'Challa talk.

Log Info:

Storyteller: None
Date: Fri Sep 20 09:04:22 2019
Location: Sky Apartments - Apt 6803

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Mari's apartment is less opulent than T'Challa's but it's nice. Cozy. Quite comfortable. Just the sort of thing that one might expect a wealthy CEO to have. At the moment it is hosting a prince, post dinner, who is on the couch next to the house's owner, watching a movie. The two have been seen a lot together of late.

And honestly T'Challa kind of likes that.

It's a rare night where Mari isn't working. That might be because T'Challa had forbade it - drawing the woman to the couch and sitting her beside him. The movie might just be one of Mari's favourites too - a disney version of The Three Musketeers.

She'd certainly proven that, quoting whole scenes as they've sat there, but she's relaxed, curled up beside him, fingers playing lightly over his arm.

"It certainly IS an entertaining movie." T'Challa notes as the Musketeers go to save the king. He smiles and places a hand on Mari's leg. Lightly. He's been a bit more familiar with her over time. Enjoying her company. It helps that she's charming and, well, nice to look at as well.

"Though I think you've maybe seen it once too many."

"It's the best movie, T'Challa." Mari laughs "Come, T'Challa, we're saving the king!" She brandishes her hand for a moment, and brings it to lay over his on her leg.

Circling her fingers over the back of his hand, Mari looks up at the Wakandan, trying to read him perhaps. "You can't see this movie one too many times. You just can't." She settles in though, closer, pressing against his side. He might be more familiar with her, she is with him as well - and being led by him, in many respects.

"I AM the king!" T'Challa laughs as the swordplay happens on screen. He glances over at Mari and chuckles. "I will take your word for it. This might be my first time."

"It is a good movie to relax to though. I trust things are in control at your business? And that Gabrielle is the ray of sunshine she usually is?"

"If you keep letting me choose the movies and not specifying what you're in the mood for, it won't be the last." The ex-model looks up and laughs "You are the King, I forgot…" Is that unusual for T'Challa? To have someone so relaxed with him they don't think of his rank?

"As in control as they'll be for the moment. We're managing the fallout from Rivera. You're … comments the other night, combined with Captain Rogers have made much of my board think twice before taking action against me." That will be finished soon and Mari's very pleased for that.

Her finger traces the Wakandan hand and up his arm, till she lays her palm against it. "And Gabrielle is as lovely as ever, though concerned about her history…" It's strange to Mari to be speaking like this.

It is but not because he spends a lot of time around people who remember his rank. It's because he spends a lot of time around people who are dead. The dead are very formal with him. Even ghosts that aren't his know he is a king. just not theirs.

"Understandably. I think you and possibly the Panther - since you seem to have such a rapport with him - should look into the zone again. Gabrielle was found there and if there is any secret to why she appeared when she did, it will be in there."

He still has to go in himself to assess that haunting that happened.

"That will I am afraid only hold your board for so long. Do we need to move more quickly to deal with Rivera?"

Mari is anything but dead and she's possibly slightly cheeky in the way she interacts with T'Challa. She can be formal of course but when that's not needed, she's rather relaxed. Like now.

She smirks at the comment on the Panther. "I don't know about rapport, T'Challa - I think perhaps he's concerned about me because he knows *you*. I did take Gabrielle into the Zone the other day and we found a lab under the building where she was found. From the files we found there, she had been held there and possibly used for experimentation. Something for a drug called HEAT, I think. It was a little vague in that respect."

Taking the Panther in further, isn't a bad idea though.

Curling up beside the man, hugging his arm and putting her head on his shoulder Mari sighs. "We're moving as fast as we can without jeopardising the end result. I really couldn't ask you to do more than you are, T'Challa."

"Very good, then." T'Challa says, settling back and putting his arm around her shoulder as she leans on him.

"Oh I think the Vixen may have impressed the Panther. Certainly that is the impression I get. Either way I do not think he will hesitate to help you. And do not forget I have my own investigation to conduct there." Which he needs her present for if only to find the building she referred to.

"So, this is what the industry famous Mari McCabe does with her free time, mm?"

Mari settles in and purrs just a little as T'Challa's arm closes around her shoulder. The big fight scene on the movie is over and the scene is the throne room now - the movie is drawing to a close.

"You do, do you? Well Vixen is impressive, if I do say so myself." she chuckles "Do you speak with him much, the Panther? You must speak to him some to get that impression." beat "I haven't forgotten the haunting, T'Challa. Though I want to and you know I won't let you go alone. Well, Vixen won't." She takes his safety very serious, Mari does. What will she do when she finds out the truth?

"This? It's part of it. Normally followed by a hot tub with a glass of sparkling white - I like to spoil myself, when I can. What does the King of the Dead do in his free time?"

"I'm glad that Vixen is so invested in my safety." T'Challa says, eyes dancing. "I must confess though one idle rich to another, I think she may have something of a crush on me. Should I do something about it? Or would it be safer to appear aloof and mysterious?"

He speaks of the Vixen as he speaks of the Panther, knowing of course that Mari is the Vixen. Granted it would be more amusing if she knew he was the Panther but still.

"Free time?" The Prince smiles. "I must confess I have not had much until recently. Learning to rule the dead, and then actually doing that, took up a great deal of time. A hot tub and wine DOES sound rather nice, though."

"Of course she is. Vixen would hate to create an International incident by seeing you harmed." Mari too refers to Vixen as a third party - but that's more in jest than truth. "And no, I have it on good authority that she's slightly enamoured with The Panther. Particularly that suit of his … "

Oh she's teasing. Terribly.

"But if I were you, I'd return the interest if you think it's there, show her a sign of your affection. If you act too mysterious, Vixen might get bored."

At his last admission on the hot tub, she just … grins.

"The Panther? Tough competition that." T'Challa chuckles and gives Mari a squeeze about the shoulders. She's still leaning and he's still got an arm wrapped around her. "It IS rather difficult to compete with his suit. And I hear the man is rather witty. Still. I have a few redeeming qualities about me."

He leans in closer. The movie is ending and he's paying less attention to it now. "What would you advise as an appropriate token of affection for Vixen? I wouldn't want to come on too strongly and scare her off."

Because yeah. The Vixen might scare. Suuuure.

"Very tough competition. The way he moves … " Mari moves closer when T'Challa squeezes her shoulder, rubbing her head against his cheek. "The suit too but yes, I suppose you have a few redeeming qualities." Who else teases him like this?

When T'Challa leans in, Mari raises her eyes, not moving back at all. Was there a movie playing? She hasn't been paying attention for a good number of minutes. "Mmmm. Do you think you could scare her off with affection? I don't know. Flowers? Chocolate? A way to clean her leathers when she's been out working?"

The spirit caller bites her lip as her eyes dance. "Or you could be slightly bolder and just … kiss her."

No one really teases him like that. Well, his sister would but not in the same way. They'd banter. But it's been a long time since anyone else did.

"Kiss her, mmm? I might be a bit out of practice…" It seems interesting for someone like T'Challa to say that. Surely his prospective matches would have been of great interest to his family and to the kingdom at large. Was there no one? Or has it just been a very long time.

"Perhaps… you wouldn't mind helping me practice?" The Wakandan prince murmurs? And then proceeds to… practice.

"Is that right? Out of practice? You know I find that hard to believe, my Prince." Mari's teasing him terribly, her lips curving slightly as he leans closer "But I don't mind helping you practice."

Her lips brush his in a tender kiss, one that lingers.

"Your prince?" T'Challa murmurs with amusement when she continues to help. He reaches over for the remote and kills the streaming service. "You know…"

He pauses and she'll see him smile rather broadly. "I think now might be a good time for wine and hot tub, don't you think?" Two things that go very well with this kind of relaxation.

"Aren't you?" Mari reflects the amusement at T'Challa, resting her forehead against his when they part. Her prince. The sound is deafening when the stream stops.

"Is that so? I have a chilled bottle of sparkling white in the fridge … head to the tub and I'll … join you." He knows where it is. Mari presses another kiss to his lips as she unfurls from the couch, letting her hand trail as she heads to the kitchen.

"You have the … best … ideas."

T'Challa chuckles and gets one more bit of practice on Mari, then heads on out to the hot tub. By the time she gets there he has already started the hot tub and changed. And slid in. He's rather fit, T'Challa is. Okay he's more than rather fit. He's sleek and toned in a way most people could only dream of. What is his secret?

Good question. He's never said. She knows he works out but his results are just… amazing.

Mari certainly doesn't complain about T'Challa's 'practice'. Maybe she thinks he needs it.

She's a little longer than he might expect, as she's stopped to change herself - usually she might not bother but with T'Challa … she's happy to take things more slowly.

"You didn't wait for me?" The ex-model pouts, eyes roaming over his body as she pours the wine and puts the bottle on ice. With the glasses left on the edge in easy reach, she sinks into the water herself and sighs.

"You must tell me your fitness regime, T'Challa or shall I make a story up?" He might want to know what she's thinking. Reaching over to get the glasses, passing one to the Wakandan Monarch of the dead, she smiles.

"What shall we toast to? More … practice? Or … something else?" Cheeky Vixen is cheeky.

"To practice and friends that help you practice." T'Challa says raising his glass. "Unless you have something else in mind?"

Either way he'll take a sip. "And no, I did not wait. I thought you might want the waters warm when you got here." They do take a few minutes to heat after all. And they ARE nice and warm right now.

"Mmmm. Why don't you make the story up and tell it to me. If it is good it might be better than the actual tale." He does want to know what she's thinking. And he's feeling playful, no surprise. Or, well actually it might be.

"To practice, friends that help you practice and … what lays beyond." Mari smiles, raising her glass and taking a sip before moving over to fit her back to T'Challa's chest. "Are you saying … you're hot?"

The little minx.

"Mmmm. What story might I tell about a studious Wakandan Prince with the body of a young god?" Mari murmurs. "I could see that the Panther Goddess granted you such a physique so that she might have something pleasant to rest her eyes on…"

There's a silence as she lets that one sink in, sipping her wine a little as she waits. "Or, your ghosts decided they're King needed conditioning and they wrestle you every day."

"Mmmm. A divine blessing or a ghostly challenge." T'Challa loops an arm around Mari as she slides up to him. There. That is QUITE comfortable and though she cannot see the way it makes him smile she can certainly hear it in his voice.

"Perhaps I fight terrible beings from the underworld. Or perhaps I escape the palace, walk among the people in disguise and work on a farm with no one the wiser."

So many stories they could tell of why the Prince is so very fit. The truth, of course, is not something he's prepared to tell her yet. Though her first intuition about divine blessing is not far from the mark.

"And what is your secret, Mari? What story may we tell of the fashion designer beautiful enough to make even sackcloth look graceful?"

Resting her head against his shoulder and wrapping one arm over his where he holds her, Mari chuckles. "Any of those are quite believable. Though, I think any disguise wouldn't hide your regal bearing." Her head turns to look at him, smiling readily.

"We could tell a similar story of a gangly teen who was gifted an artifact of the god of her tribe. When she wore it for the first time, it transformed her and she grew into the woman you speak of today." There's a chuckle and Mari shakes her head "You are too kind, T'Challa and you flatter me. I am but a woman however it pleases me that I am pleasing to your eye."

"I think that you would be pleasing to anyone's eye, Mari." T'Challa says quietly. Here he doesn't have to speak loudly. "Would we say then that the artifact showed the young girl's inner beauty. That it made her on the outside what she always was on the inside?"

A trope perhaps but a very flattering trope. T'Challa kisses Mari again, on the cheek. Well, kind of on the jaw but still.

"You're very pleasing to the eye. And the ear. And your company is uplifting, Mari."

"It's served me well, T'Challa, I can't deny that or be modest and deny that I have … a look." Mari answers, turning in his arm to face him. "In truth, I suspect it was luck of the genetics lottery and a father who loved me so thoroughly, I learned to be confident and kind. Well, I hope I'm kind."

Leaning in, Mari presses her lips to T'Challa's, as she puts her glass on the edge again. Her arms rest on his shoulders as the kiss lingers tenderly.

"You are. Kind and generous and intelligent and witty." T'Challa smiles as she turns to rest her arms around him. He's happy to lean forward as well. To return the kiss. To let it linger as it will. When it ends he leans forward again to capture her lips and start it all over again.

She has a look yes. She'd hardly have been a model otherwise. But she has much more beyond her simple look.

Mari chuckles against T'Challa's lips. "I think we'll order in tonight and stay out here for a while." Maybe … he'll stay the evening but if he doesn't, that's ok too.

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