Chapter 38: Open Book

Micah sat down, taking in his surroundings. The illuminated ruins to their side, the candles surrounding them, the flowers, the champagne… it was a lot, even for Love Day.

“You didn’t have to go all out like this for crummy old me.” He told Morgyn from across the table. “I’m fairly low key, you know.”

“I’m not.” The sage replied with a nonchalant grin. “Going all out is my signature style…”

That did not surprise Micah. “Thought as much. The food and drink’s all yours though. I’ve… eaten.”

Morgyn pulled a face. “Not even the wine?”

Micah gaze travelled from the bowl of ceviche to the empty glass before him. “I mean, I can eat and drink, if it makes you feel more comfortable.” He shrugged. “Just won’t feel all too great afterwards.”

“That won’t be necessary.” The spellcaster helped themselves to some wine.

“I’ve got to say though, out of everyone I’ve ever dated, you are definitely the most difficult to wine and dine.” Morgyn added teasingly.

Micah smirked. “Not at all. I’m pretty easy. You can just let me drink a bit more of your blood and consider me dined.”

The sage’s eyes narrowed. “I don’t think so.”

Not that Micah expected a different response. He didn’t imagine Morgyn would care to repeat the experience from the duelling grounds any time soon. Perhaps someday.

Until then, he’d have to settle for whatever knowledge he could get them to share directly. Something told him that wouldn’t be a whole lot either. Morgyn wasn’t foolish enough to reveal all of their cards at once. No, Micah was fully aware the sage would only offer the bare minimum to keep him interested. Might as well play along. It wasn’t like a candle-lit date was unpleasant.

“Worth a shot.” He said, smiling impishly.

“Fortune favours the bold.” Morgyn agreed. “That’s why I like you. You know what you want.”

The vampire snickered. He may have had the odd bold moment, but definitely hadn’t encountered a lot of fortune coming his way.

“I’m an open book, clearly.” He looked into Morgyn’s eyes. “Unlike you.”

“You say that, and yet, I’ve been more open with you than I have been with anyone.” The spellcaster revealed. “At least, anyone in a long time.”

Micah studied their face. The last remark intrigued him, but he decided not to prod. It was unlikely Morgyn would reveal more on the matter, and in the grand scheme of things, it wasn’t important.

What did matter was that the sage was as honest as they were willing to get with any other person at this point in time, apparently. And that was something Micah could use to his advantage, to get the information he so desperately yearned for. The vampire was of course not oblivious to the fact that even this level of so-called honesty wasn’t fully by the spellcaster’s choice. Not that he was going to point that out. Even if Morgyn hadn’t repeated the words power and control several times in the botanical gardens, it didn’t take a genius to realise they wanted to feel in charge.

“Do you find it hard to get vulnerable with people?” Micah asked instead.

“Hard?” Morgyn frowned. “It’s not difficult to overshare. It’s just unwise.”

“That would make sense for someone like me – when you’re a vampire and your only company is a bunch of other vampires who have centuries on you, oversharing is the last thing you’d want to do.” Micah offered his take on the matter. “But as a mortal, especially one that’s already in a position of power… it just sounds exhausting. Everyone needs to relax sometimes.”

“You don’t get to become and stay the sage of the untamed by being relaxed.” Morgyn said. “And as you assessed yourself when we first met, I’m not exactly mortal.”

“You’re not exactly immortal, either, though.” Micah retorted back.

“Same difference.” The sage’s tone was almost defiant. “As long as I keep casting the Rejuvenate spell on myself every year, I won’t age another day.”

Now there was some of that knowledge. Not tremendously useful to Micah, but he was on the right track.

And then he stopped himself. It seemed almost too easy to push Morgyn’s buttons now that he’d learned a bit about the sage. Perhaps it was the edge he’d gained by drinking the sage’s blood. Or perhaps it was because he’d seen Verena do it. Did he unwittingly become more like her over the last decade than he had thought?

That thought alone repulsed him. Sure, he was just doing what he had to in order to regain his humanity… but if the path to that meant he would need to turn into his former vampire mistress, then what was even the point?

“I… guess that’s true.” His voice wavered. “You know what’s best for you. All I meant to say is that constantly putting on a front must be tiring and lonely… scratch that, I know it’s tiring and lonely. Because that’s been my life these last 13 years.” He added, completely abandoning all strategy.

He was not like Verena.  He was just someone who desperately wanted to feel alive. But maybe Morgyn wasn’t that dissimilar to him.

For a moment, the sage didn’t say anything. Then they stood up and walked over to Micah.

“That could be different now, though.” Morgyn whispered, drawing closer. “You don’t have to be lonely…”

“And we’ll live happily ever after?” The vampire let out a dry laugh.

The sage hesitated. “Committed relationships aren’t a particular strong suit of mine.” They looked directly at him. “I’m not exactly making any promises here.”

“Neither am I.” Micah noticed how hoarse his own voice sounded. He pulled Morgyn towards him. “Only mortals can promise forever.”

The spellcaster leaned in closer. “Would you like to spend the night in the magic realm with me?”

Micah decided no words were necessary in response, opting for closing the last bit of distance between them instead.

***

The dawn was almost about to start creeping in by the time Micah exited the portal from the magic realm. Luckily, he didn’t have far to go.

He felt strangely giddy. It had been years since he’d done anything like this, and he hadn’t expected to ever be able to, not since he became a vampire. The whole experience reminded him of a time long lost. Sneaking in and out of a lover’s room to prevent alerting the rest of their household. Discovering each other’s bodies for the first time.

And now doing the walk of shame, or whatever this was. He almost felt alive again. Which was what Morgyn had promised, hadn’t they?

As he approached the house, he spotted Cordelia emerging from within the tree opening. He hadn’t seen her around ever since that evening she burst into his room.

She didn’t say anything to him, but their eyes met. Micah’s mood immediately shifted, an awkwardness overcoming him, He didn’t know that much about her relationship with Morgyn, but he gathered enough to be aware she would not be happy about what just went down between him and the sage.

He reminded himself that she had no way of knowing where he was returning from. For all she knew, he could be coming back from a perfectly innocent moonlit stroll. As if any stroll involving vampires was innocent…

“I need to get inside,” he motioned towards the house. She followed along.

She looked nervous. Of course she was. She had every right to be terrified of him.

“Come for another house viewing?” He asked non-committally.

“Actually, I was thinking of moving in.” She didn’t sound particularly certain. “If that’s ok with you, I mean.”

“Wasn’t this your home first?” Micah pointed out. “You don’t need to ask for my permission.”

“I guess not.” She looked like she wanted to say something else.

Micah glanced towards the window. It was getting brighter. He needed to get himself away… But he felt he should try to say something to reassure her about this living arrangement, as ridiculous as the whole situation was.

“I meant what I said the other day. You don’t have to worry about me nibbling at your throat while you sleep. I’ll source my… sustenance elsewhere.” He hoped she wouldn’t dwell on him pausing to avoid the word blood.

She gave him the strangest look. He could tell she was still scared of him but she almost seemed… curious? She was such a peculiar mortal.

“Do you believe in fate, Micah?” Cordelia asked just as he was about to head up.

“What?” Fate. She had to be kidding.

“Morgyn followed you to Forgotten Hollow. And I followed them… ended up in your house… and now we’re sharing a house again. Was that always meant to happen?”

Did she think he had some profound life truths to offer because he was a vampire? She was probably just trying to make sense of everything that happened, Micah thought. But he had nothing to offer in that department.

“No.” He said firmly. “Life is messed up. Yours – probably messed up. Mine – definitely messed up. Saying it was always supposed to be that way is just cruel. Now, I really need to get to my coffin…”

He didn’t wait for her to respond and sped up the stairs. He had no time to waste on nonsense like fate. And if Cordelia had any sense, she should realise that neither did she.

22 thoughts on “Chapter 38: Open Book

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  1. Sneaky little lingerie scene here. And then awkward triangular stairs! It all makes sense now, apart from to anyone reading this comment.

    So who is controlling who? The very large and elaborately dressed table may be turning…

    Also, I love it when characters discuss their own fate. Of course it’s not fate Cordelia, it’s plot. Now play nice and enjoy your girly bedroom in the prison. Don’t disturb Micah, he’s been up all night. 😉

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Was there really any lingerie, though? We’ve seen more of Micah in previous chapters haha!

      The question of control may not be that straightforward here indeed.

      Yeah, I’ve got to admit I do like being a little meta from time to time. It tickled me…

      Liked by 1 person

  2. There’s something about this chapter.

    Two persons sharing a quiet moment, two people discussing fate. Everyone outlining their expectations of each other / their relationships. Perfectly cordial, perfectly civil. Micah even stopped himself from “strategising”.

    Even so, this is a huge chessboard. Everyone’s playing very different hands. Cordy’s hand is the worst because she’s still putting down her ‘heart’ card. Which is a shame because in a different environment, against different *cough* players, laying your heart and being sincere is a good thing.

    Btw I think Micah’s taste in clothing is so mine. >.> First smexy shirt,now smexy sweater. Those are my go-to clothing for my male sims. Then again, those look amazing so I bet lots of people use them. Anyhoo, I’m looking forward to his next outfit. xD

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Definitely plenty of elements of a chess match involved in the “date.” And personal goals. Certainly nobody’s laying out all of their cards, in spite of Micah’s decision to stop strategising, like you said. Nobody but Cordelia, yep.

      Same, I’m guilty of using the same clothes over and over. Though I also picked these because they still show off his tattoos. I haven’t picked any other outfits for him so far – if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it, right? 😆

      Liked by 1 person

      1. There’s one other outfit Micah wore, a leather jacket. I think it was red in color. I thought that looked okay. (Lol look at me totally keeping tabs on him xD) I’m a touch person so fabric type is super important to me. hence I didn’t mention that outfit 😛 )

        Liked by 1 person

  3. This was a nice journey into Micah’s mind. My overactive romantic brain has starting spinning its wheels, but I’ll keep my musings to myself for now.

    It’s interesting that both Micah and Morgyn agree that they can’t really do committed for their varied reasons, which actually aren’t that varied.

    And I wonder when Micah is going to get the knowledge he craves.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Aww, but I want to know what your overactive romantic brain is coming up with 🙂

      They do have a lot in common, including keeping their guard up and their unwillingness to fully plunge into a relationship.

      He sure hopes so.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Micah, dearie, it’s perfectly fine to make use of the edge you have over Morgyn. They’re doing the same thing, after all, by not just diving into finding you a cure and stringing you along instead. In fact, I’d bet on Morgyn never telling Micah what he wants to know unless the vampire makes him. At least they both seem to be enjoying each other’s “company”. XD

    Heh, I like the meta aspect of your sims discussing fate. Nonsense, huh, Micah? xD Though he does have a point – things are going to happen regardless of how much they worry about it. It also just occurred to me that Micah and Morgyn are a much better pairing than Cordelia and Morgyn, simply because they don’t get jealous of their partner moving onto other things. Or at least, I’m assuming that Micah wouldn’t.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Rest assured that Micah’s decision to abandon “strategy” was much more so for his own sake than Morgyn’s 🙂 Interesting theory. There is definitely a lot of power play involved. But yes, enjoyable aspects for both parties involved too, heh.

      Haha I know. I don’t blame Micah for refusing to believe in an evil overlord pulling the strings (AKA me). It wouldn’t really have any merit for him. Morgyn and Micah definitely have more in common and more similar attitudes then Morgyn and Cordelia.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. First I want to say on that there is a really beautiful scene you have set up in the ruins.

    Morgyn and Micha are more alike than you first think. They are both suffering from loneliness and they do not want to be in debt to anyone.
    Micha definitely knows what he wants, which makes Morgyn feel safe …. but what exactly does Morgyn want?
    There is something I do not really understand in Morgyn’s eternal desire to fulfill the desires of others. However, this is not entirely true as Morgyn constantly keeps his cards close to his body.

    Cordelia is like an open book … but Morgyn does not understand what it says. However, Micha can read a little more.

    I get pretty spellbound by this universe and the people that exist in it. There is no easy way to understand it.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you! I had fine dressing it 🙂

      They definitely share more similarities than they may have initially thought.

      If I remember rightly Micah did ask Morgyn what they wanted back during one of their first encounters in Forgotten Hollow, and Morgyn’s response was “everything” 😀 So make of that what you will.

      Yes, Morgyn likes to keep their cards close to their chest. So does Micah, to be fair. Cordelia, as you said, not so much 🙂 And you’re right, Micah is quite observant.

      Thank you, that’s a big compliment. Yes, it’s not straightforward, I like to have layers – but I also like to leave a lot to reader interpretation 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  6. I will try, TRY not to obsess over this date and this love scene because I know that I have Morgyn blindness and it is all-consuming.

    Okay.

    Whew.

    OMGOMGOMGOMGOMGOMG! YES! I know I was shipping Morgyn and Cordelia, but I am shipping Morgyn and Micah even harder.

    And that’s why it pains me to say I think Micah might be the one to break Morgyn, not the other way around. It’s so interesting looking at a relationship with Morgyn from two different perspectives. Micah walked into it with eyes wide open. Like Cordelia, he needs the Sage to help him with a problem, but unlike Cordelia, he’s not entirely naive. When he decides to let his guard down and sleep with Morgyn, its a choice, he enjoys it, but he is 100% clear on what the relationship is. It’s also just fascinating that his internal monologue is trying not to manipulate Morgyn. He’s forcing himself to pull back. Whereas I can imagine Morgyn thinking they are the ones with the upper hand.

    Maybe it’s because of his age, but Micah seems to have a better sense of himself than Cordelia. It was more obvious to me in this chapter that she is sort of spinning her wheels. How is she going to figure out who she is and get a grip on things?

    Okay, and sorry, I still can’t get over this scene at the table with Micah. I mean, it feels almost too easy to be like: Verena is a bad person because she manipulates people. I mean…there’s a reason why it was so easy for Micah to slip into it, right?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Bhahahaha the first couple of paragraphs and your attempt to not obsess were hilarious – good effort 😂😂😂 Also, I don’t blame you, they do make a nice pairing, you know, power play and mind games from both of the involved parties aside 😅

      Micah definitely got involved with Morgyn with different expectations and mindset than Cordelia, that’s for sure. And yes, there are parallels between Micah’s and Cordelia’s relationships with Morgyn. Although there are differences other than their attitudes too – for instance, Morgyn never really pursued Cordelia the same way they did with Micah (there may be a reason for that, but I really should shut up 😆). In any case, Micah is in a better position than Cordelia through his outlook alone, for sure.

      But you’re right that of course, he’s got some years on her, and he had over a decade of laying low with the coven, plenty of time to reflect about himself and other people, which is a luxury Cordelia never really had with the sprites constantly on her back.

      Oh yeah, definitely. People like to distance themselves from less desirable traits of others, even if they might reflect their own 😊

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Ooo, that got kinda steamy.

    Morgyn takes Micah, a vampire, on a romantic dinner date, and he can’t really get any enjoyment out of the food, lol. I’m guessing this was mostly all for Morgyn’s enjoyment and the fact that they are a little self-absorbed. Still, Micah and Morgyn are probably well suited for each other, in just the fact that neither of them is looking for a commitment. Yet they are both sort of dependent (probably not the right word) on each other. Micah can’t really go back to Forgotten Hollow because of Verena, and Glimmerbrook is probably the safest place for him, though he probably could leave and go other places. And Micah knows some of Morgyn’s secrets.

    I like the contrast between Cordelia and Micah’s viewpoints. She seems like she wants to sit down, ponder, and figure out the meaning behind their situation, while Micah is like, I don’t have time for this, life sucks, move on. Not that either of their outlooks is right or wrong, but it adds an interesting dimension to their living arrangement.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I suppose it did, haha!

      I know, the ridiculousness of the date premise tickled me. I think Morgyn does a lot of stuff for show rather than anyone’s enjoyment, necessarily. It’s a tough habit to drop. But yes, they could be well-suited in some ways, and you’re right that they’re both sort of holding trump cards over each other.

      Micah and Cordelia definitely are processing the current events differently. I’m glad you’re enjoying seeing their different coping mechanisms come to play with each other!

      Liked by 1 person

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