It's been exactly one year since peace was declared between the warring districts of Panem. For one year, districts have been rebuilding and the Capitol is distributing food, resources, and aid across this nation. For one year, a new kind of force has been trained, Peacekeepers, with the goal of providing justice and security to the districts. Today, Panem is marked by peace and hope, as we grow better than we were before.
On this year anniversary, Panem must pay the price for its peace and growing prosperity. The 1st Annual Hunger Games are about to begin.
President Wilhelm Ash reminds citizens that, like was decreed on the Day of Peace, one girl and one boy from every district shall be reaped to compete in The Hunger Games. One victor shall be crowned, and as a reward, the victor and their district will receive gifts from the Capitol. These Games, held yearly, are a reminder to all of the Dark Days before us, the generosity of the Capitol, and the hope of the future ahead of us.
No one wants to return to the Dark Days - a decade-long war of fighting a dictatorship, of brother against brother, of destruction and death. Everyone in the country has lost someone to the fighting, and any remaining rebels will be shown no mercy. Peace and prosperity has a price, and the citizens of Panem are willing to pay it.
Will you be a tribute in the 1st Annual Hunger Games? Or will you fight to protect Panem in this new force, the Peacekeepers? Will you rebuild your home, and help your neighbors rebuild? Or will you settle into your new life in the Capitol as a reward to your family for your great service in battle?
Who will you be in Panem Today?
Sep 24, '19
The admin team is currently on hiatus and not accepting new members at this time. Feel free to leave us a message in the shoutbox at the bottom or the chatbox on left side of the screen (slide out) if you have any questions.
Jan 17, '18
The 1st Annual Hunger Games are set to start anytime! There is still time to sign up your tributes and do Pre-Game activities.
Post by Elias R. Jagger on Oct 11, 2018 18:57:02 GMT -7
Emilia had gotten used to the unspoken arrangements that seemed to fall into place over the next few of weeks. Eli didn't have to speak to her about it, he wasn't sure how. After that night, he simply stopped going to her apartment. Levi had stopped by three days later. He didn't need to ask, perhaps Lia had told him or perhaps he could see it in her eyes. Levi was like a friend caught in the middle. He was friends with Lia, cared about her and loved her. And he had become friends with Eli, both of them without meaning to. And there was Emilia, a child caught in the crossfire of Eli and Lia's f*cked up relationship. There would be no clean break, not now, maybe not ever.
They walked up the stairs to Lia's apartment door. Eli never crossed past the door, he always stayed outside. Though Emilia always proved herself to be responsible, he still couldn't allow her to walk up to the apartment on her on. Perhaps it was some sick twisted thing inside him that made him want to see Lia just for a brief moment and not to make sure Emilia was safe, as he'd been telling himself. Despite everything, she still had a hold on him.
It had been exactly four weeks, 10 visits, 20 hellos and goodbyes since that night. It never got any easier or any less awkward. Eli knocked on the door. "Don't forget, I'll be here tomorrow afternoon exactly at noon," he reminded her as they waited, it would be her first sleep over since. He had been slightly selfish about not letting Emilia stay the night because with Emilia not at home with him, he would be alone. And he would know exactly how Lia felt.
Post by Jezelia Lennox on Oct 12, 2018 7:24:33 GMT -7
Somehow, the last four weeks had been the longest, most difficult weeks she’d had in a long time. The most dreadful part during these weeks were when Eli dropped Emilia off, to later pick her up. The hello’s and goodbye’s were like ice and fire, hitting her to her very core. Per usual, her way to deal with it was to work. She’d managed to get her old job back and had been going there everyday unless she had Emilia over. The shifts would usually end up being way past 12 hours but it didn’t bother her at all. It kept her mind busy and busy meant no room to think. The last thing she wanted was to think about how she was alone again. The hardest part of it all was the rejection. She hadn’t really handled that part well, with only one possible outcome to cope. She usually ended up leaving with a different customer a couple of times a week, desperately trying to forget about the man that didn’t want her.
There was one good thing though during this period of time. Emilia. The times she had with her were an absolute bliss. The little girl reminded her so much of Davina and efter spending so much time with her, the thought of Davina didn’t hurt as much as it used to. For that, she was forever grateful to Elias, for letting her have those moments. It was the only time she was truly happy and every time it felt like the hours just flew by and it was time for Emilia to leave. This time however, Eli had agreed to let Em sleepover and Lia was ecstatic.
Soon enough, she heard a knock on the door. As much as she was excited about having Em, she knew that it wasn’t just her waiting on the other end of the door. Lia drew in a deep breath before opening the door and she was right. Elias was standing there and no matter how many times she saw him, it never became any easier. The men she spent her time with were supposed to make her forget about him yet she still couldn’t stop the pit inside her stomach from growing. She just gave him a slight nod, having trouble to keep eye contact with him for just a few seconds. As soon as the door was closed and she found herself alone with Emilia, her entire mood changed.
Time had passed all too fast. They’d built a fort and slept there, read books and ate way too much junk food and it was the most fun Lia had had in a long time. She really enjoyed having Emilia over but she knew her time was up for this time. Another knock on the door had both of them walking over there. Elias was there as expected. Emilia ran over to him, hugging him tightly with a wide grin on her face. ”Can Lia and I have more sleepovers? Please?” She asked, her eyes wide. Lia shifted uncomfortably, not really wanting to see Elias more than necessary. ”You two discuss that on your way home, yeah?” Lia said before crouching down to hug Em. ”See you next time”, she smiled and then closed the door. Lia let out a deep breath. Everything about him was burned into her memory. Like always there was only one way to make it go away.
She made her way to her liquor cabin, pouring up a glass of red wine. That was when she saw Emilia’s bracelet. She must have forgotten it. Lia shrugged it off. Em would just get it next time she came over. Hours passed and before she knew it, she’d reached out to a guy she’d met at a club two nights ago. She never really made it into a habit to sleep with the same guy twice, but he’d made it incredibly clear that he wasn’t interested in anything else which suited her perfectly. Soon enough, he was at her place and they went about their usual activities.
Lia was laying in her bed, butt naked when she heard a knock on the door. Damien was already getting dressed and just about ready to leave. Lia didn’t know who it would be at this hour and she didn’t really care. ”Just tell whoever it is to leave and come back tomorrow on your way out, yeah?” She smiled at Damien and reached over to her bedside for the glass of wine. ”Will do. Next week, same time?” He asked, to which she just nodded. He left after that. Lia remained in bed and heard him talk to someone, telling them what she’d told him. She wasn’t leaving her bed, she knew that much. But when the door didn’t close and she no longer heard voices, something began to feel off. She got up and wrapped a robe around herself before going out in the hall. ”What are you doing here?” She asked upon seeing Elias of all people, standing by her door.
Post by Elias R. Jagger on Oct 12, 2018 15:09:07 GMT -7
Eli looked up when the door opened, but before he could say hello, she'd nodded and closed the door as soon as Emilia went inside. No hellos today. He stood in the same spot looking at the door for a few moments, going over what else he could have done different, how everything could have played out... different. But in the end, he turned around and walked back downstairs and out into the streets.
He began the long walk home, but found himself wandering. He stopped at another familiar door, Aria's door. She wasn't home, she'd already told him she would be working today. Eli sighed and looked at that door for a few momets, too. He liked her, he really liked her. So what the hell was his problem? He shook his head and this time, headed in the right direction towards home.
Eli couldn't bring himself to drink once he was at the apartment. He needed it, he'd convinced himself he deserved it. But what if Emilia needed him? What if she suddenly came home in the middle of the night for some reason? It wasn't until eight the next morning when he fell asleep, and then it was time to pick up Emilia.
Doors. Everything had to do with doors. Physical ones that he couldn't cross. Emotional ones that he was afraid to. And now he stood at a familiar door with an unfamiliar person at the other side of it looking back at him. The man reached his eyes and met his eyes with a cocky confidence.
"She said come back tomorrow."
Eli cleared his throat, pushing away whatever emotion was creeping up from the back of his head, "actually I'm just here to see if there was something left behind."
"Listen pal, I'm just telling you what she told me," the stranger took a step forward, his hand pulling the door in an attempt to close it.
Eli met his step and stopped him, "first of all, I'm not your pal. Second, I just need to see if she has something that I'm looking for."
The man laughed, "trust me, PAL--" he put his hand on Eli's chest.
Eli grabbed the man's wrist before he could continue and was about to punch him in the face when Lia showed up.
He stared at her and then at the man and let go of his hand. "Your FRIEND here wouldn't let me talk to you. I'm just here to see if you had the bracelet," he said not looking at the man but keeping his eyes focused on Lia. He didn't even want to say Emilia's name in front of the stranger.
Post by Jezelia Lennox on Oct 12, 2018 15:33:56 GMT -7
Lia stared at the two men in front of her, letting out a deep sigh. "Sorry Damien. Manners isn't really his best attribute", Lia shrugged, while watching the scene unfold. Damien shook himself loose and left with an angry look on his face. She couldn't really blame him. Eli had that effect on people. "I actually told him to shoo away whoever came knocking", she told Eli and went for another glass of wine. She didn't care if he came inside or not. He was there for the bracelet and he could have it. She just needed her wine first.
She remembered putting the bracelet in the kitchen. Coincidentally enough, that was where her wine was. Lia didn't wait to see if he followed her to the kitchen. She just poured herself another glass, grabbed it and the necklace and went back to Eli. "Anything else?" she asked, wishing he would disappear again. He was particularly good at that. He was like a fly on the wall, that was constantly there to annoy her. Even when she couldn't see him, she could still hear him and feel his presence. The whole point of seeing Damien was to get rid of that but when he showed up right after, then it really was for no good.
Post by Elias R. Jagger on Oct 12, 2018 15:51:12 GMT -7
Eli ignored the comment and stepped aside to let the man leave. He stayed by the door, not daring to cross over and instead waited for her to come back when she turned and left. He waited a few moments, not really sure if she meant for him to follow. But again, he couldn't bring it upon himself to move. He was at the other side of that door, he would forever be at the other side of it. They were too complicated, too dangerous, too toxic. Too much everything that neither of them could handle.
He looked at the bracelet she was holding and shook his head, "I... guess not." He wouldn't have come back here alone if it weren't for that bracelet. Emilia always wore it, never took it off, not even when she was sleeping. And now, for the first time since she'd put it on, it was left behind in Lia's apartment. Why had Emilia taken it off to begin with?
"It was her mothers," he said and reached out for the silver bracelet that had her family's name inscribed on the inside of it. He remembered when he took it from her wrist and when he gave it Emilia, the last and only thing she had left of her mothers.
Post by Jezelia Lennox on Oct 12, 2018 16:01:58 GMT -7
Lia shrugged at his reply. "Well then", she answered and closed their distance to give him the bracelet. As soon as it was in the palm of his hand, she took a few steps back, taking a sip of her wine. When he explained the meaning of it, Lia just nodded. "I know. She told me." Em had told her right before they went to sleep. She had asked about Lia's family, to which Lia told her that they were no longer around and then showed her the necklace around her neck. She'd gotten it on her 15th birthday from her mother. That was when Em showed her the bracelet, telling her that it was her mom's.
"You're doing a great job with her you know", she couldn't help but tell him. It was true. As far as she could tell, Emilia would grow up to be an incredibly smart and strong woman and it was thanks to Elias. She already missed having her there, but was definitely grateful that she wasn't there at the moment to see her drunk.
Post by Elias R. Jagger on Oct 15, 2018 12:44:59 GMT -7
Eli pocketed the bracelet and double checked that it was, in fact, in his pocket. He wouldn't know what he could do if he had lost it along the way, Emilia would be devastated and probably never forgive him. It was odd to hear those words come from Lia. The last time they had a longer conversation than just hello and bye was when they had fought last. He looked down at his shoes and back up at her nodding. Sometimes he wasn't sure if he was doing anything good for Emilia. It was so hard trying to keep her hidden and safe. She didn't truly belong to him, after all. "Was that uh, your new boyfriend?" he asked. He wondered what was going on with her and Levi. Levi didn't really talk much about Lia, he supposed he didn't want to make their friendship awkward by talking about someone they both cared about. Eli wouldn't have cared if Levi and Lia were together, at least he thought he wouldn't. Levi was a good guy, and he was now a friend. Probably the only friend that Eli had.
Post by Jezelia Lennox on Oct 15, 2018 13:17:03 GMT -7
Lia shrugged when he nodded as a thank you. She assumed that that's what he meant, or maybe he just agreed on the fact that he was doing a good job. She was halfway through taking a sip of her wine when he asked his question, making her choke on it. She coughed it away the best she could before looking back at Eli. "More like friend with benefits", she answered before realizing what she was wearing. It was the lack of clothing that bothered her. There she was with a satin robe that just about covered her butt. It wasn't like he hadn't seen it all before but the circumstances this time were far too different.
"Just one moment", Lia said and put the glass of wine on the counter. She tried not to hurry back to her room, fully aware that too much movement would make the only piece or garment slip up. While in her room, she put on the closest panties, threw on a pair of shorts and then a t-shirt before making her way back out. It was every bit of awkward and now that she was back in front of him, she realized that she probably should have just kept the robe on instead of making a big deal out of it.
Lia had to gulp down some more wine before dealing with the awkwardness of the situation. "Anyways..."
Post by Elias R. Jagger on Oct 25, 2018 12:30:55 GMT -7
'Your new boyfriend', the words echoed in Eli's head. How stupid, he thought. He could have kicked himself for that, he sounded like a jealous ex-boyfriend, though he was never that. They just casually slept together and had feelings for each other but that commitment where titles were involved was never broached. "Oh," Eli said nodding. They had been friends with benefits once. Was this like that? He shook his head to try to clear his thoughts, he shouldn't care. "He seems... nice," he chuckled. When Lia suddenly left him standing at the door, he looked around, unsure of what to do. Was he supposed to follow her inside, did she want him to follow her? He rocked on his feet, his head peering inside the apartment. It looked just the same as when he'd left that night. She hadn't changed anything, added or removed. When he heard the patter of her feet, he took a step back and pushed his hands into his pockets, feeling the bracelet there.
"You didn't have to change for me," he said. "I wasn't going to stay," Eli wished he could catch the words midair and shove them back into his throat, it sounded like an insult. "I just mean, Emilia wanted her bracelet," he couldn't bare to look at her now, so instead he looked down at his shoes. "But uh, if you," he wasn't sure what he was trying to say. He looked at her, his brows raised. What did she want? Did she need someone to talk to? Did she want company? Did she just want someone to drink silently with? He was never good with these things. Women were too complicated for him, the ones he liked anyways.
Post by Jezelia Lennox on Nov 25, 2018 16:37:34 GMT -7
Lia's brows furrowed. She shook her head after that. What a weird thing to say. She'd already gone back to her room and changed, but Eli's reaction and comment was still repeating itself for some strange reason. It wasn't like he was bothered by the situation or anything, yet she couldn't help but get herself hung up on his comment.
She'd just finished gulping her wine when his next comment struck. This time she laughed. "Eli... please. Don't flatter yourself", she grinned. "It just didn't feel..." She paused, trying to find the right word. "Appropriate." That was a good word to describe the more tangible aspects of their awkward meeting. She nodded to herself after that, before she found herself balancing slightly on her toes as she rocked herself backwards and forward, wondering if things could get any more awkward. Apparently they could.
Looking back at Eli, she couldn't help but snort a little, a small smile beginning to play on her lips. "If I what? This is every bit of awkward as we're both thinking it to be. I dropped a bomb on you that day and you don't really know how to deal with it. Hell, I don't even know how to deal with it. All this tip-toing around each other, cause we both know how it all goes to shit the moment someone says something wrong." Lia shrugged and finished the last of her wine. She didn't really know where she was going with all of this, more than the fact that she needed to say something. She sighed and put down the glass on the counter before looking him in the eyes. "Can I just ask you one thing? One thing and-" She paused, biting down on her lip. "And then we don't have to talk again if that's what you wish for." It was a stupid thing to bargain with, because truth be told she didn't want to stop seeing and talking to him. Even though it had only been hello's and goodbye's the last few weeks, one's she'd hated but also loved. His presence still grounded her somehow as well as frustrated her. But it was better than nothing. Anything was better than nothing. Even his anger.
Post by Elias R. Jagger on Jan 9, 2019 13:18:18 GMT -7
Eli wasn't sure how to act around Lia, there was a definite tension there that neither of them could ignore. But the way Lia acted, it was as if everything was fine with her and she was talking to a long time friend that she often had over for wine. He nodded and looked down,they had been acting very awkward with each other what with all the trying to avoid each other and the tiptoeing around as if they were walking on eggs. For a moment, he thought perhaps they could just have a glass of wine together and laugh about this and then he would go home with the bracelet in his pocket. But then he paused, unsure of what really to say to her. He was sure she would ask her question anyways, but Eli was afraid of what she might ask.
"Uh... Sure," he responded, wondering if he could have just walked out the door without saying anything. He was a grown man for gods sake. He could have a proper adult conversation with her. He felt a bead of sweat form on his temple and quickly wiped it away. "Ask away," he tried to smile.
Post by Jezelia Lennox on Jan 12, 2019 18:09:44 GMT -7
Lia took her time, trying to think of the best way to phrase her question. Things never went well with Eli if she just said what was on her mind. If she'd been the closest thing to rational she would've ended everything with him weeks ago. But she wasn't rational. They were too alike, too stubborn and fiery. He was everything that Levi wasn't. She had to look down at the thought of Levi. Sweet, loving Levi. She hated herself for everything she'd put him through but mostly for not being able to love him back. She knew that if she could do just that then her life would turn out nice. She knew he'd love her enough for the both of them and that they'd end up having the life they used to talk about when they were younger. Problem was that too much had changed and she didn't want a love that was kind and good. She wanted the all consuming one, the one that she thought she could have had with Eli. But if that wasn't the case, then all she could do was move on. No matter how much it hurt her.
Jezelia sighed a little before looking back up at Eli. "Was it easy for you?" she started before swallowing back the lump in her throat. "To ignore what you felt", Lia added, her eyes stern. That was really all she wanted to know. She knew that there was no way for her to have him. Whatever was holding him back had an iron grip on him and she knew how difficult it was to get rid of iron shackles from the past. She also knew that he would avoid her question all together, or just flat out deny that he ever felt anything.
"No more lying Eli. I didn't believe you back then and I still don't when you said that you never felt anything. So please, just do me the decency of being honest with me. That's all I ask", Lia said.
Post by Elias R. Jagger on Jul 27, 2019 12:41:32 GMT -7
Something inside Eli swelled up, like his heart was expanding and his chest had no more room to expand. It hurt, not just in his poor weeping heart hurt, it physically hurt him. Like small tiny cuts. Like deep gaping woulds. Like sharp stabs, like dull aches. It just hurt in all sort of ways that he had trouble breathing. He remembered that gun shot. Remembered the fear. Remembered his heart breaking, dying at the thought and fear of what happened to her when he ran back to her apartment. He wasn't sure if he was relieved that she was still alive, or heartbroken that it got as far as it did. What did he do?
Eli tried to reign in his emotions, to focus on something other than her words and the pain the felt inside his chest. Was he dying, was this a heart attack? He could barely breathe. Perhaps this was what heartbreak felt like. Or death. They were the same thing in the end.
He looked up at her, met her gaze, stared back at her eyes that pleaded for truth. "No," he breathed, barely able to get the one simple word out. Was it really that simple though? The word held so much meaning, more meaning than he could ever explain. No. It wasn't easy, it still isn't. He buried his face in his hands. What more could he say? There were no words to explain what he felt.
Post by Jezelia Lennox on Jul 27, 2019 15:02:40 GMT -7
Lia watched him struggle to get the word out. She thought that hearing his answer would bring her peace of mind but all it did was the complete opposite. There was so much anguish and pain and it hurt more than she thought it would. A part of her wanted to lash out at him, ask him why he'd put her through hell, why he couldn't have been honest with her from the beginning, and another part wanted to just let it go. At least now she knew that she hadn't been crazy for thinking that he felt something for her.
Jezelia sighed and carefully pried his hands away from his face. "Thank you", she said and met his gaze. "Thank you for being honest with me". She didn't know that else to say. It didn't matter anyways, their chapter was over. She truly believed that there was no hope for them whatsoever and it didn't matter that she still loved him in a crazy, complicated way.
Post by Elias R. Jagger on Sept 3, 2019 20:14:56 GMT -7
Eli didn't know what he expected. Perhaps he thought she would scream at him, yell at him in anger, and lash out all her fury that had been building up these past few months. Maybe she would cry, spill her heart into his hands, and let him pick up all the broken little pieces. But she did neither of those things. Instead she took his hands and moved them away to look into his eyes. He stared back at her, vulnerable and open. Eli pressed his lips together, an attempt at a smile, and shook his head. This was a mess, his mess. And he had no idea how to clean it up. He didn't know how to fix it, any of it. Maybe there just wasn't any fixing it. Maybe sometimes life was just like this, broken.
"I'm sorry," he said. He didn't know what else to say. It was the only thing he could say. He was sorry for everything. "I know that I fu.cked things up. Everything. All of it. And there's nothing I can do or say to fix this mess I've made. I'm sorry." He sighed, his hands sliding out from hers as he stood.
Post by Jezelia Lennox on Sept 14, 2019 16:55:28 GMT -7
Lia watched him in silence as he tried to get an apology out. She never thought that all she needed to hear was ‘I’m sorry’, although it did make her feel better the moment he said it. She felt some of the weight on her shoulders lift and for the first time in a long time it was as if she could breathe again.
Her hands felt cold when he slipped his out from hers. She couldn’t help but sigh and returned her gaze to his. ”So now what? What do we do?” she asked, truly puzzled as to what their next step would be. “I don’t want these strained visits. I just want-“ Lia broke off, frowning. Now that she came to think about it, she didn’t really know what she wanted. Did she want them to be friends? In all fairness, she wasn’t really sure how that would work out. She wasn’t even sure if she wanted them to work things out and then give it another try. It always ended in chaos and they were both to blame for that. Yet she still couldn’t help but recognize the longing feeling, the one that still wanted him to be hers.
Jezelia shook her head and sighed yet again. “I don’t know what I want. I really don’t. I just know it’s not this”, she said and gestured at the both of them. She hated how the small distance between them bothered her and that Damien, as she came to think about it, wasn’t enough. He was just a means to an end, with the end being her trying to forget about Eli. Despite that, she knew that if she somehow thought it was okay for her to approach Eli, she would. She’d do it in a heartbeat and not think about it twice. But it wasn’t okay, she had to remind herself. Eli had made it perfectly clear.
Post by Elias R. Jagger on Sept 24, 2019 12:40:19 GMT -7
He clasped his hands together, now cold and void of her warmth. Talking to her was difficult, but hearing her ask him what they should do now was even more excruciating. What could he say? There wasn't anything he could say that wouldn't hurt her or someone else. And he himself had no idea what he wanted, but didn't want this either. There was a great chasm between them and he didn't know how to bridge that gap that seemed endless. Bottomless.
"I don't want this either, but," he shrugged, not having a solution. "I don't know how to fix this, Lia. How to fix us." Could they even be fixed? How do you glue back together shards of glass that seemed to form no shapes? They couldn't continue being amicable to each other, all the while ignoring the glaring problems between them.
"It's too hard and I wish that it wasn't, I wish it was just easy to say let's go back to the way things were or start over from the beginning," he said. "We can't do that, though, can we?"
Post by Jezelia Lennox on Sept 24, 2019 13:10:10 GMT -7
Lia watched him as he spoke. She watched his hands move, the way his eyes creased when he stopped to think for a moment. She wished that she could come up with a solution, an idea as to what their next step could be, if only to stop the pain that she could see in his eyes, but there was nothing. Her head was empty. She could only nod in agreement when he mentioned that it was too hard. He was right about that. She missed the days when they worked at the bar and he’d scold her for drinking too much. It had been easy then.
Jezelia sighed, although a small smile began play on her lips. “Maybe we can”, she said and took a small step back before reaching out her hand. “Hi. I’m Jezelia, but you can call me Lia”. She met his gaze, smiling. She didn’t know why that small reaction made her feel good, happy even. Maybe it was because a part of her wanted to believe that it was easy to start over. Maybe she still had some resemblance of hope. She could only hope that he thought it too and that she wasn’t alone.
Post by Elias R. Jagger on Nov 27, 2019 10:20:14 GMT -7
He stared at her a moment. Her face changing to look more carefree. A smile. When was the last time he'd seen that on her face? He thought back to when they'd first met. It wasn't like this. She was cold and brash. She was like a boulder come in through the door of the pub. But perhaps, so was he. Was that what they were? Two boulders meant to collide into each other? He stood up and looked down at her hand. They looked soft despite what was probably years of work. Then he looked up at her. Was this possible? They could start over. They could be friends. He could forget the past if she could.
Elias smiled, maybe it was possible to go back in time. Anything would be better than what they had and what they were heading towards. Which was probably nothing. He took her hand in his, soft in his rough calloused hands. "I'm Eli, it's nice to meet you."
The warmth from her hand radiated to his and he felt more calm now that he had in days, weeks. Months even. Eli let go of her hand and stuffed them in his pockets. He looked down at his shoes before looking back at her, his eyes finding hers.
"I have a little girl who's waiting for a bracelet," he said when he felt the small chain in his pocket. "She'd probably like you." He said with a small smile before heading to the door.