Dinner Invitation


Flare advertises itself as fine dining in an elegant atmosphere, and it's not false advertising. The foyer, the dining room and even the bar are done in creams and neutrals, teak woods and ash, with the occasional dark panel for contrast. Etched glass panels hang from the ceiling and disappear into the taupe carpeted floor; some separate the tables, some are merely decorative, reflecting the white recessed lights that shine through them from the ceiling. There are splashes of Egyptian blue color throughout to break up the possibility of monotony: sprinkled in the carpet, accenting the wood panels, decorating the tables as glass candle holders.

The foyer has an elaborate mosaic pattern of dark and light browns highlighted with blacks and darker blues swirled into the floor tiles. The seats are eggshell white leather. The accent wall has a vertical waterfall, the water streaming down etched panes of glass into the marble pool to be recycled and begin the cycle anew.

The bar holds the motif, but fetches in more colors to the palette. The recessed lights behind the bar are a mixture of blue and red, white and yellow. Colorful bottles line the bar shelf, and a huge mirror hangs at angle over the bar, reflecting the marbleized bar top and the bar area, depending on where one stands to look into the mirror. There is seating here too, and starters as well as drinks are provided in the bar.

The wait staff dresses formally: servers in crisp white shirts with Egyptian blue bow ties, and slacks (or skirts) to match. Flare does not require reservations, but they are suggested to avoid long wait times. However, given its location, clients without reservations are as common as though with and the staff is able to juggle both magnificently.


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Aidan Kim (npc) Corrie

Aidan is distracted. Noticeably so, and it has been for several days, possibly longer. Between Celeste's departure, Gwen's arrival and subsequent departure and the consistent stream of dead ends his investigation into the journals is yielding, his mind has been going in circles and random tangents. No one has commented on the distraction out loud, at least not where Aidan can hear them; no one other than Kim - who snaps her fingers in front of his face and invites him back from whatever planet he's visiting. Fortunately, his human servant has only done it in private, so it hasn't really been a bone of contention between them.

He needs a break from all of it, because yes, even a vampire can need a holiday, and he decided yesterday that he was going to take a bit of a sabbatical. Kim and Owen can manage the restaurant without him. With the summer days being longer and nights being shorter, Aidan doesn't spend all that much time in the kitchen anyway, and won't until fall when the nights begin to stretch out again.

He is at Flare tonight, finishing up a meeting with Kim and Owen regarding some last minute details for things during his absence. It's casually professional, the three of them gathered around the desk, Aidan fidgeting with a pencil until Kim reaches out and places a hand on top of his.

"You're worse than a kindergartner with ADHD," Kim chides with a fond smile. "I hope this holiday does you some good."

"That's the point," Aidan agrees. He looks between the pair, "Anything else?"


Hectic weeks are nothing really out of the ordinary for Corrie. When she was working for Randall, the hectic weeks involved obtaining new clients, and continued work on her own 'accounts', which by all means were generally friends or people she knew well enough to promote. Now that she's working on her own again — well this past week has been hectic enough with once again trying to keep Amber Bardot out of the tabloids, but it's also been spending days running around to various offices and the bank to see about setting up her own business, and getting all the paperwork in order so that she could start promoting herself.

But this doesn't mean that she's at all forgotten her other client.

It's early enough yet that she figures Aidan will be out looking for a bite (pun intended). The folio she carries is rife with details about upcoming promotional thoughts for the restaurant, as well as several ideas for other events to host throughout the year — all centering around various charities. Donations are one of the better ways to promote a business and make it a household name among the appropriate crowds.

The door to the office isn't locked, and so she waltzes in to leave the folder on the desk. When she spots the trio, she blushes and quickly spins back toward the door hoping to escape the office mostly unnoticed.


"Kavanaugh," Aidan calls out before Corrie can depart the office. "Stay a few." He intended to call and tell her that he'll be away for a bit and she'll have to play nicely with Kim in his absence, but she's here and that works just as well.

Better, actually, because now he has the two women together. "I need to get you in the loop too, I think."

Owen has his marching orders, however, and the wolf rises to his impressively tall height. "I'm all done here, Aidan?"

The vampire nods, "Yes, you'd better get back on the kitchen."

"Later, Kim. Corrie." With a nod of his own, the man departs the office, pulling the door closed behind him.


"Oh, I really can't," Corrie says without glancing over her shoulder. "Things to — " In the loop? Sighing, she turns around.

Owen is given a bright smile when she comes face to face with him, but she doesn't say anything to him. She does have a favor to ask of him later, but it can wait until she's dropped off the file folder. "Later."

Staying back at the door, she glances between Aidan and Kim. "I really wasn't intending on interrupting, I just wanted to drop this off."


The smile given to Owen is not missed, and Aidan can almost hear Kim's wild speculations that will come later. Aidan, however, simply dismisses it and motions Corrie away from the door and toward one of the vacant seats. "You're not interrupting anything. And you don't have to hover. Come on and sit down for a few minutes, please?"

It's all casual, friendly, professional. There is absolutely no reason for him to not be so.


"I'm not hover — " Sigh. "Fine." Corrie moves toward the desk, taking a seat in the chair that Owen has just vacated — because it happens to be the closest one, and leaves a space between herself and Kim.

"Here," she says offering the file folder over, "are some of the ideas I have for promoting the restaurant in the future. Setting up daily specials, or deals, or even events like the one for Celia Collins is all well and fine in the short term, but if you want to promote over the long term…" Her hand motions to the folder.

"What did you wish to speak to me about?" Her voice isn't cool, just extremely professional — likely for Kim's benefit.


Kim leans forward and takes the folder, leafing through it with a curious air.

"I'll take a look when I return," Aidan leans back in his chair. He continues by way of explanation, "I'm going on holiday. A week, maybe two -"

"We should be so lucky," Kim teases with a smirk.

Aidan gives an exaggerated roll of his eyes, a small smile teasing at the corners of his lips. "As I was saying before I was interrupted -" A look is given to Kim, "I'm going to be gone for a bit, so that means that you and Kim will be working together on the promotional things while I'm gone."


There's no twitch when Kim takes the folder. Corrie does speak with her about promotional efforts on a near daily basis, and there's nothing within it that's for Aidan's eyes only.

"A holiday sounds like a lovely idea, and likely much needed." It will give her time to work with Amber a little more. Try to find the girl an agent.

"I have no problems with that in the least." Beat. "There's nothing too extraordinary on the agenda that needs doing immediately."


"Oh wonderful, we're all in agreement," Kim stands and places the folder on Aidan's desk in the appropriate sorting bin. He knows that she will look it over later. "That you need a holiday."

She smiles politely at Corrie, "I'll look it over later tonight or tomorrow morning. Right now, I need to get back onto the floor, unless there was something else, Aidan?"

Aidan considers, and then shakes his head. "No, I think we're done."

"Then I should get back out on the floor," Kim comments. She leaves without another word, leaving the vampire alone with the witch.

Aidan gives Corrie a curious look, and leaning forward, rests his arms on the desk. Watching her, he begins timing how long it will be before she bolts from the office. "Haven't seen you around lately?"


"Of course, Miss Dae. Whenever you have a spare moment. There really is no rush as these are more… long term goals." Therefore, if Kim happens to forget about them, it's really not going to hurt business or stop what she's working on.

"I should go too," she murmurs, glancing back as Kim leaves the office. Corrie starts to rise to her feet only to flop back into the chair exhaling a rather large sigh. "I've been busy. Looking into a few things for myself, dealing with the exploits of another client."


"Plus I figured you could use a bit of a break, as Celia kept pulling me into your plans."


"Not all of them," Aidan replies easily enough. He props his elbow and rests his chin on his hand, blue eyes locked on her. There is however, no heat or lewdness in the look; while not so much detatched or professional, it does remain casual and friendly. "We've been over this. If I hadn't wanted you there, I would have said something."

There's a shift then as a little more curious intensity comes into the look. "Have dinner with me. Before I go."


"I know," Corrie replies with a light laugh. "Still, you didn't really need me along for the majority of them." Beat. "Though I do appreciate you humoring me and allowing me to spend a bit of personal time with one of my favorite authors."

There is a very distinct blink. A very surprised look in her eyes.

"Did you just ask me on a date?"


"You're welcome," Aidan grins, and it's light and playful, touched with good humor. "She liked you, and it wasn't as though I didn't enjoy the company of the pair of you."


"No, I asked you to have dinner with me," Aidan corrects. "I asked a friend to have dinner with me."


Corrie stands up, carefully perching herself on the corner of his desk. "Did she? I wish I'd had a bit more time to take her out sightseeing, but keeping the social media feeds up and dealing with the press tend to take up the better part of my days." Sightseeing at night is difficult — most of the more historic places tend to close to the public after sundown.

At the correction, she looks almost as though she's considering the offer. "When? I'll have to check my calendar to see if I'm free."


"I wouldn't worry about it," Aidan watches Corrie's movements. "Celia saw plenty and she really is still a party girl at heart. She likes the nightlife." Now there is a statement of pure unadulterated honesty.

He chuckles and leans back in his seat, "I wouldn't want to impugn on your busy schedule. How about this? You let me know when you're free and I can be flexible."


Sliding her phone out of her pocket, Corrie opens up the calendar program and glances at him in a slightly curious manner. "Come off it, Aidan. You're planning to leave soon, you're inviting me to dinner, what's up?"

It's not so much a feeling as to something being… off… about him. It's more or less that he's keeping a distance he doesn't normally want to keep unless he's trying to get her to chase him.

"I should be good midweek, provided you don't mind having a later dinner? Say, nine or so?" Which honestly, would be bright and early for him.


"There you go again with the accusations." Aidan cocks his head and grins. "What's to make you think I have an ulterior motive? Maybe I just like your company and want to bask in it before I leave?" Yes, he is laying it on quite thickly, and he knows it.

"Midweek is good for me," Aidan agrees, twisting the chair a bit side to side with one foot. "There is something that I want to give you before I go and I did think that dinner might be a pleasant change."


"I should think that it was more of a curiosity as to something being off with you than an accusation of a dastardly deed," Corrie replies somewhat dryly. "You don't need to lay on the charm that thick to get me to agree to dinner with you."


"Provided I'm not on the menu."

Another quick glance at the calendar, and she selects a date. "Thursday at nine? Unless you'd rather have dinner prior to that so you can get an earlier start." There's a slight pause. "I'm busy tonight, but I've got tomorrow free."


"Something has to be off with me for me to invite you to have dinner?" Aidan lifts his brows at that, blue eyes shining with falsely projected innocence.

At the next, he gives an exaggerated roll of his eyes, "You know that you're not on the menu." Not for lack of trying on his part, and the fact that he's given his word to not feed on her is quite a bit maddening. It's a slow and careful road, winning her trust and damned if he sometimes doesn't want to say 'bugger it all' and see how big the fall out is.

"Is Amber grounded this week?" Aidan can't help but ask. He can't think of any other reason that Corrie would have a night free from babysitting the flamboyant socialite.


"Yes." It's a very honest answer because Corrie doubts that he invites people to dinner all that often.

"I know, but it's so much fun to tease you about it." Winking, she tosses her hair over her shoulder and leans back to smile at him. "She's got a private date with someone who's got a whole lot of PR personnel with him at all times. I was told I'd not be needed." Because yes, otherwise she'd be spending all weekend babysitting her young little celebutante client.


It's not a poor assessment. Aidan doesn't often have guests over for dinner. He takes dates - and he's using the word 'date' loosely - to dinner and he has guests for dinner, but anything else typically is avoided. Kim is, by far, the one person he does frequently cook for and dine with.

"Like I said, there is something I want to share with you," Aidan gives a slight shrug of his shoulders and rolls the chair around the desk, cornering it like a vehicle as he brings it to a halt close to the witch. His eyes track the curve of her neck, lingering for a heartbeat on her pulse point before flickering up to her face, his voice teasing, "In other words, you're passing her off for a night as someone else's problem?"


It takes a second for her to realize just where his eyes lock, but when she does, she shoots him a sly look and runs her nail over her pulse point in a very slow manner. When his eyes reach her face, Corrie winks at him and nudges a his knee with her foot. "That's a pretty fair assessment, yes. I wanted a night off." Though she doesn't actually say why.

"Is it a deep, dark secret?" Beat. "Is it another journal? I've read the three you leant me cover to cover at least six times now."


There's a slow, suggestive and appreciative smile at her teasing. Aidan's tongue flicks out to moisten his lips as he drifts closer still, resting an arm on the desk beside her. "Do you have a hot date?" Aidan teases. "A secret mission?" He nudges her leg with his arm.

"You haven't grown tired of reading about Gwen's escapades and every day life yet?" Aidan is vaguely amused. "No, it's not a secret. It's a surprise. Which means, you're going to have to be patient." A light tap is given to her knee.


"If I did, I'm obviously cancelling it to have dinner with you," Corrie points out, slipping off the desk so that she can lean over his chair. "That must make you pretty important or something." It's a light, teasing tone that she uses as she leans in to whisper, "Either that or I'm really not going to tell you exactly what I was planning on being up to." Her teeth nip at his ear as she draws back very slowly.

There's a gentle laugh as she tries to get a bit of distance between them. "Surely, you jest. People pay a great deal of money to read historical works like that — and most of those are fiction. I find it intriguing. Enthralling that she lived through so much in such a short period of time. Even for a twenty year old, she had a full life."

Lower lip jutting out in a small pout, she sighs. "A good surprise though?"


"Never let it be said that I have a modest self-image or understated belief in my own importance," Aidan whispers back. "I know that I'm pretty damn important." Because modest, humility and low self-esteem are traits that Aidan does not have and probably never did past the human age of three when true autonomy kicks in.

He turns his head just as she draws back, catching the corner of her mouth and her cheek in a playful kiss. He will tease and play, though there is only so far Aidan will push that envelope at the restuarant, in his office and during business hours. Catching Corrie's eyes as she works to put distance between them, Aidan smirks and rolls the chair back a good foot away from her.

The vampire folds his arms across his chest, "Suppose that I forget sometimes what it's like." To not have lived all those intervening years and experienced the history first hand. Still, it's one of the things he finds interesting about humans: their interest in the past and history.

"Don't pout," Aidan chides, "Didn't your Mum ever tell you that your face will freeze like that?" Beat. "Yes, it's a good surprise."


Snorting as he mentions his lack of modesty in the self-image department, Corrie simply shakes her head. "Ah, yes, and it's just my luck that the older of the two Princes happens to be married," she says teasingly. Because obviously royalty trumps vampire importance to the Brit witch.

When he rolls away, she laughs and hops back up onto the corner of the desk. "Good idea, Boyle. Keep your distance. It's much more professional."

Corrie is, by no means, the historian of the family, but the insight as to the past that the journals possess? Is very interesting to her. Especially as it's a look into what her own ancestors were like in the past.

"In a pout? Hardly." A slight pause takes place before she smiles. "Good surprises I can handle. Bad ones… generally aren't worth the wait."


"I happen to have the ability to be the absolute epitome of professionalism," Aidan retorts with a broad grin. "Isn't that obvious?"

"I can promise you that this will be worth the wait," Aidan slides his chair back behind the desk. "Saturday then, a late dinner?" He will, of course 'eat' before Corrie arrives. "My flat. I'll even cook."


"Is that why you had to roll your chair back away from me?" Corrie chuckles and then smiles at him. "Completely and totally obvious. You can definitely keep your hands off of me." To prove it, she hops off the desk again and wanders toward him. Her hips sashay a little in a very distinctly 'on purpose' manner, and she places her hands on his arms. Leaning in, she whispers, "If we weren't in your office I might let you have a taste."

Only, they both know she'd never allow it again.

"You'll… cook. Oh it must be important then. Not a hint?"


Aidan watches the witch curiously when she hops off of the desk, and keeps his eyes trained on her as she makes her way toward him. There's very little outward reaction when Corrie leans in, aside from the shifting of his smile from teasing to something slightly more sensual.

"I certainly don't seem to be the one having trouble with my hands," Aidan leans toward her, not quite closing the distance. Just close enough to tease, close enough to feel her warm breath on his face. "Now, we both know that you're teasing."


"I happen to like to cook." Aidan leans a hair closer, and it really shouldn't be possible, but he manages. "I have something that belonged to Gwen, that isn't a journal."


"I'm hardly touching anything…" Corrie pauses as she contemplates the word to use and then grins. "… that'll be dangerous to either of us. If anything I've merely lost my balance and want to keep from falling into your lap." At least that is what it'd look like to anyone coming into the office.

"Am I? Can you read me that well then?" Her brow raises as she waits for the response, tilting her head just a little to tease all the more.

She is teasing him. She has no qualms with doing so. He pushes her buttons often enough that she'd like to see how far she can push him without eliciting a reaction from the man.

Slowly allowing her tongue to moisten her lips, she leans in to whisper, "You really don't need to entice me with Gwen's belongings. I was already planning on coming to dinner. If nothing else, I like the challenges you present."


"But," Aidan pauses a moment, subtly shifting and flexing the muscles of his arms, "You are touching something." It may look entirely innocent, and really there's nothing on the surface about her posture that isn't innocent.

Except that Aidan knows better.

He doesn't want to give her the satisfaction, but he can't help it. As her head tilts, Aidan's gaze drags to her throat. He moistens his lips and draws a faint breath, his eyes lingering again on that jumping pulse point. This close, her heartbeat is even louder, and he can scent her blood beneath her skin, memories of the taste of her lingering in on his tongue.

"I present challenges?" Aidan lifts his gaze back to her eyes, shifting in his seat. His voice doesn't rise any louder than hers, "Of what sort?"


"Would you rather I not be?" Corrie lifts her hands up so that they're just hovering over his arms now instead of actually touching him. Just to continue the tease.

When he starts to gaze at her throat again, she smirks. It's a victory. A small victory, but were he human he'd likely be pushing her against the wall. It's a victory she can live with. Even so, she sets her hand to her neck. Fingers rubbing against the pulse point as though she's exceedingly nervous and unsure. Her teeth nip onto her lip and she locks her eyes with his. "You didn't answer my question."

A nod is given to his question. "You do. Of various sorts." Beat. "You present the challenge of a full seduction. You obviously don't respond as a human male would. You create this small possibility in my mind, due to Gwen's knowledge, that should I wish to apply myself, I could be a better witch. You constantly challenge me to go against what you wish, simply for the argument and conversation of it all."


"Do you really need more than that at this moment?"


It's not the touching that's the issue, it's the suggestion of touching that's all the more … alluring. Even without touch, the heat of her hands lingers and the hint of warm blood flowing beneath all that soft skin. Particularly with her fingers playing purposefully against her pulse point, and it's truly only his age and years of practiced restraint that don't have her bent over the desk with his fangs buried in her neck.

"You do know what they say about playing with fire, Corrie?" Aidan asks quietly. His arms remain folded across his chest, but there's the briefest, flexing of tense muscles before he wills himself to relax. He isn't shy about focusing those intense blue eyes on her throat, a flash of hunger mixed with desire there before he joins his gaze to hers. "After the hell you gave me over one bite that you didn't even remember? Aye, I'm sure you're teasin' me."

A slight tilt of his head as he considers her words, Aidan gives her a smug and appreciative smile. "No, I think that's enough."


"You don' entirely object to it all though, d'you?"


The slight tensing is noted, and it's another small victory. It causes Corrie to lean in, keeping her lips from touching his ear as she whispers, "You get burned." Beat. "Has it ever crossed your mind that continued conversation with you means that I'll get burned no matter how cautious I am?"

Surely it must have, because really… he is a vampire.

Her breath is warm over his cheek as she draws back again, murmuring, "I suppose we'll find out on Thursday night if I'm teasing you or not, aye?"

Winking, she starts to shift away.

"To the challenges? Why would I object to them? They make me a better person."


"Mmm," Aidan admits and then breathes out a soft puff of air near her ear. "Sometimes, though, that's half the fun of it."

He won't even allow himself to consider the suggestion beneath her words. The vampire isn't going to argue with her, but he can and will wait her out. Eventually, she'll come around and the anticipation does make it all the more sweeter.

"What you're saying then, is that my being a sizeable pain in your arse is a good thing?"

He resists the urge to reach out and brush his fingertips against her arm as she retreats. Aidan doesn't really need to escalate things between them at this point.


"Isn't it? Always being on the edge of danger, of potential… pain." Corrie very nearly said 'heartbreak' which really doesn't apply in this particular situation. "They make ointments for burns, I'll survive." No matter the outcome.

"Mmm… I suppose I am. Not all the time, mind you, but enough of the time that I think it helps me better myself." Though as for the witchcraft portion of that, it's really just the desire to save her own skin should push come to shove. It is why she's wandering home come morning and not leaving until Saturday night.

"I should go soon." Beat. "Before the staff starts additional rumors as to what you're up to with me ensconced in your office."


"I do hope so," Aidan chuckles warmly. "That you'll survive." Because really, this is just a reminder that there's so much there that he wants to unlock; so much anticipation of how much fun he can have with the witch.

"I'm going to have to head out there soon enough anyway," Aidan says giving a faint tilt of his head toward the door. "Oh, but the rumors don't really get interesting until they start the betting pools."


"They did that immediately after Miss Collins' book signing," Corrie points out. Really, they'd started before that, but the pools only began after the image of the witch kissing the vampire on the cheek in a flirty manner were passed around.

"Give me a ten minute headstart," she says, giving him a slightly stern look. "Enough time to actually leave and get on with my night before you check on things."

Blowing a kiss, she hurries toward the door and out. All so that she can slip through the kitchen and outside to her car, where she can wander to the nightclub and check on Amber.

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