While I Was Away


After months of no contact Alexis finds Emi working in an upscale clothing store in the Four Clover Wall. B-but it's not like he was worried about her or anything!

Date: 2018-06-08
Pose Count: 38
EMI v248.1 2018-08-20 11:12:18 95083
    There were all kinds of stores in the Four Clover Mall. Most of the options catered to the tastes of teenagers and the disposable incomes of their parents, but there were also plenty that catered to adults and the wealthy. There were even those shops that catered to the ultra wealthy, for both Tokyo and Mitakihara specifically had more than it's fair share of the elite.

    It was in one of these clothing stores that Emi had found herself. Some might think it a fluke, and others might think it the last possible place to find the seemingly young robotic woman with only the slightest grasp of human and, indeed, Japanese culture.

    "How is this?" Asks a white haired little old lady wearing an exquisite purple dress and an almost obscene three banded necklace with grape sized natural pearls as she stands before the white haired sales associate. Emi's red eyes stare at her without moving the slightest bit, directly into those of her questioning customer. "That will not do. It makes you look fat."

    One can almost see the very well dressed, middle aged manager stiffen as the words are spoken, pretending not to pay attention and doing a poor job of it. The customer blinks in surprise at the direct, negative response, only for Emi to speak again. "The color is also too vivid, you would have too much blush to hide the shallowness of your cheeks." Three steps are taken and new dress is pulled from the racks without even being checked for size. Emi holds it out to the elderly woman by the hanger in such a manner as to be demanding. "This one will suit you better. The sash around the waist will disguise and compliment your figure and the muted tones will favor your complexion. It is twelve point six-two-five percent more expensive, but you can afford it."

    The little old lady looks blankly at her for a moment before taking the hanger, looking the dress over and sidling back into the changing rooms.

    Emi follows, but only to retrieve some other items that had been tried on, staring at them with narrowed eyes before returning to them to their proper places on the racks, walking at a brisk pace.
Stahlritter 2018-08-20 11:22:54 95084
    "All things considered," a certain rumbling, male voice with the faintest hint of an european accent to the japanese words can be heard from just nearby the robotic young woman, then. "That's probably still better customer service than *I* could manage."

    And when she turns to look, there leaned up against a shelf where *no one* definitely was just a moment prior, conveniently situated to block the view of the manager, happens to stand one (1) tall figure in a hoodie, with caucasian features peeking out from underneath and bright green eyes peering right towards Emi.

    Unlike the last time she saw him outside of his Knight Armor, she should recognize the figure as Stahlritter, now-- or Alexis, as he expressed his preference for being referred to when he is in public like this.

    Both hands stuck into the pockets of his jeans, his head tilts slightly off to one side, to look the girl over curiously.

    "Though I do have to say, this isn't the place I expected to see you in after you've been gone for more than a month."
EMI v248.1 2018-08-20 11:32:57 95085
    Emi finishes returning the clothes to their proper places before turning her head to Alexis. She gives him the same sort of direct, impossible to read look she gave the woman, only to have her eyes minutely narrow. "Your attire is inappropriate for an establishment of this caliber."

    She turns and walks past him, walking over to a circular rack and meticulously separating the clothes that had been bunched together as they'd been looked through. "Hot Topic is on the second level. Go down the escalator after exiting left. It will be the fifth establishment on the right." Done with her task the hangers are evenly spaced. Aside from anything poofy that requires a bit more space it is now geometrically perfect.

    "That was a joke." A half beat and a heel turn brings her looking directly at Alexis again. "I haven't been 'gone'. I have been here. Where did you expect to see me?"
Stahlritter 2018-08-20 11:44:43 95086
    "..........Hot Topic........." And with that, Alexis' eyes narrow back at Emi, with a heavy grunt, peering after her as she movves past, without actually moving away from the spot. "Isn't that, for.. you know, *goths*?"

    And then, that perfectly deadpan addition from her prompts out a groan from her and a roll of the eyes. "... Well, you're learning *something* at least, I guess..." He allows in a low murmur, before focusing properly on her once more.

    "We haven't seen you," he points out. "Or heard from you. So for all intents and purposes, you were gone as far as we knew. Hell, I was *worried*."
EMI v248.1 2018-08-20 11:55:59 95087
    Emi holds up a finger and gives a small half shake of her head. "It is also for edgy brooding types that are unwilling to enlist the aid of others for incomprehensible reasons." At once her face turns extremely serious and her eyes seem to harden as she looks at Alexis. "Ugh, my dark past. They could never understand..!" she says in an overly husky tone while clenching her fists. The expression fades as quickly as it came.

    Her red eyes study his face for a moment. When she speaks again it is once more completely monotone, "Or did I get that wrong? I do not have entirely sufficient data to extrapolate beyond a seventy percent certainty."

    At his comment about not seeing her it's almost as if her eyes are piercing straight through him as her head tilts up to look him in the eyes. "My two weeks of temporary residence had expired. You said I should attempt to keep a low profile and not draw attention to myself. Was it incorrect of me to take your advice?"
Stahlritter 2018-08-20 12:23:17 95088
    ...Alexis actually flusters considerably while he stares back at her during and after that particular impression. Red gathers along his cheeks, and he blurts out, "I sound nothing like that!" Except it's more hissed out, since he's trying to keep his voice down to avoid being spotted by other staff and customers.

    With a huff, he leans a bit more against the shelf, and his lips purse slightly over her words. "I did say that," he admits. "But that doesn't mean I--" Beat. "...We, didn't want to keep seeing you. ... Just to make sure everything's okay, you know? I didn't know if you were just in hiding or if you were captured by someone or... I dunno, anything. ... I was worried, okay?"
EMI v248.1 2018-08-20 12:46:36 95089
    The little old lady shuffles out of the changing room now, the dress Emi gave her to try on shifted on it's hanger and slightly rumpled, clearly having been tried on. Rather than consulting Emi further she heads straight to the register where the manager begins ringing up her purchase.

    As she looks at Alexis' response the corner of Emi's mouth turns up ever so briefly. "It was not intended as a direct impersonation, but a facsimile. Your biological and emotional responses, however, are indicative of defensiveness as opposed to dismissal."

    She considers his next words, peering at him as he leans against the shelf even more. When he finishes speaking her eyes widen slightly, "I see. I miscalculated your intentions. Your concern for me was perhaps more personal than I understood."

    Emi shifts so that her feet are together and her hands folded one on top of the other in front of herself before bowing politely to Alexis, clearly having picked the gesture up from somewhere. "I apologize for worrying you." She straightens and lifts her head to face his once more, "My lack of contact with you and the others I've met has not been intentional." Emi considers for a moment before adding, "I appreciate your teaching and enjoy your company. I would not be opposed to more frequent contact."
Stahlritter 2018-08-20 12:54:44 95090
    The fact that there is at least a beginning of a smile there on Emi's features, however momentary, definitely isn't lost on Alexis, judging from the brief quirk of his own dark brow, in spite of the otherwise flustered reaction still showing aftereffects in him. But, he doesn't comment on it-- at least not right now.

    He averts his eyes briefly, then. "Well..."

    And then she's actually *bowing* over, and he actually looks genuinely surprised. And just the briefest flush of red shows in his featuers again-- for an entirely different reason. "I'm just... being responsible. I think it's part of my duties too, that's all...!" He huffs with that-- and even for Emi, that probably didn't sound particularly convincing.

    "...The doors to the penthouse are still open to you, you know," he murmurs. "You can come visit. If you want to."
EMI v248.1 2018-08-20 13:10:42 95091
    Emi gives him another one of her direct, expressionless looks as he explains himself in a huff. It lasts for several seconds before she looks over to her manager, "I have tripled my daily quota. I am ending my shift."

    To Alexis she nods, "I will visit more often."

    Then she steps closer and takes his hand before turning and heading for the exit, her manager sort of staring after her as she makes to leave. Wordlessly she walks to the escalator and takes it down, ignoring any commentary or questions the tall European boy might have for her. She continues to walk and potentially to his horror she was not lying about the Hot Topic.

    She passes this, however, in favor of taking a turn into what for the mall is a relatively quaint ramen shop, releasing his hand and sitting down at a small booth.
Stahlritter 2018-08-20 13:23:59 95092
    "...What?" Is the only question Alexis gives Emi at first, during The Look. Alexis at least would like to *think* that he is good at reading people, but when it comes to Emi, he just never has *any* idea what is going through her head at any given moment.

    And that would be why there's actually a brief *squeak* of a surprise when Emi suddenly takes his hand and starts metaphorically dragging him along.

    "E-...emi?!" he manages to blurt out by the time they get out of the store, but nothing else-- even more so since she's likely ignoring just *that* too.

    "...Emi." he repeats after amoment, though, with red burning through his cheeks when he realizes that people are giving them looks-- the sort of looks people usually briefly give to couples who are not at all ashamed of making that little fact clear.

    "............................................."

    When they finally do get to the ramen shop and she lets him go, he lets out a heavy breath, face still burning up. "... You should know usually girls only walk hand in hand with... very specific people," he mutters, after a moment, and turns to slide himself, sheepishly, down to sitting opposite from her in the booth.
EMI v248.1 2018-08-20 13:34:11 95093
    "You should lower your hood. It would otherwise be impolite to the owner," Emi replies as he sits down. She considers his statement while watching him and then gives a slight nod. "Yes. I should have held you by the wrist."

    The owner of the shop looks their direction and she raises her hand, "I would like a spicy pork with egg." Her eyes then look to Alexis expectantly while noting, "This eatery has specific customs for ordering. Is it not agreeable and quaint?"

    She sets her hands in her lap and is rather still while she considers, face as unreadable as usual. After a few moments she speaks again. "I found your mannerisms in reaction to my gratitude amusing and enjoyable. However I believe it would be best if we skip over the part where you pretend you don't like me. It is a common and effective method of engagement in media, but I believe it would quickly become tiresome in practice."
Stahlritter 2018-08-20 13:42:21 95094
    "...Then why...?" Alexis starts to ask with a slooooow blink of his eyes-- but for some reason or another he figures he is probably better off just leaving that specific question... well, unsaid.

    There's another brief huff, and as he props his elbow to the table and his chin to his knuckles, he calls in echo of Emi to the shopkeeper, "Make it two!"

    He still looks away when she makes her accusation, and there's a low grunt in his throat. "I have no idea what you are talking abou--" He starts, but then something sinks in. And he slooooowly turns his eyes to her, narrowing them. "... Did... did you just call me tsundere?" Squint! "... Just how much anime have you watched since the last time I saw you?"
EMI v248.1 2018-08-20 13:52:25 95095
    "I miscalculated the necessary subtlety required for your sensibilities," Emi responds.

    Alexis orders shows a good opinion of her taste by ordering the same thing she does. Her gaze remains on him even while her face remains expressionless. She'll respond to his question first, "Approximately one hundred and seventy hours."

    Her eyes narrow a little then. "Are we actually doing this? Very well."

    She turns her head to the side and crosses her arms. This time rather than an approximation of his voice she'll raise her own, "It's not like I care about you! I was just doing it as a part of my duties! It's your fault for making me worry! Hmph!"

    Her expression returns to neutral and she looks back at him again. "That is how you were acting. I recognized the mannerism and responded pragmatically to the situation."
Stahlritter 2018-08-20 14:15:33 95096
    "Okay well *first of all*!" Alexis blurts out, and finally the hand that was supporting his chin slaps down against the tabletop seperating the two of them in the booth. "DOn't compare me to some tsundere romcom-anime girl so casually! It hurts!"

    A heavy sigh, then, and his expression turns to one of bewilderment. "Second, how are you only so emotive when you're pretending to be someone else?!"

    His gaze flicks away from her again, and his lower lip juts out slightly in a measure of a pout. "... Look I am not very good at... *these things*, okay? I wasn't exactly a professional friendmaker in my childhood years or anything. What do you want me to say?"
EMI v248.1 2018-08-20 14:29:05 95097
    "Did I not say I found your reaction amusing and enjoyable? I am not intending to hurt you, Alexis, only to add weight to my analysis by providing a hyperbolic example to compare and contrast. You did not seem convinced and appeared to reject my obviously correct conclusions."

    As for the bewilderment Emi shrugs lightly, "Imitation is a simple matter for me. I understand emotion, and I am now more familiar in the ways it is expressed in this culture. I am not, however, familiar with how to properly express my own feelings." Another blank stare. "I believe you are familiar with this conundrum."

    "I understand you are having trouble accepting and expressing yourself. That is precisely why am acting. I do not require perfect expression on your part unless I've misunderstood you." Pause. "Addendum: A misunderstanding of actual emotion, not one borne out of internal conflict due to keeping up appearances or a rejection of ones own feelings."
Stahlritter 2018-08-20 14:37:04 95098
    "I... guess I should be happy that I am entertaining at least, I guess?" Alexis mutters, with another huff of a sound, and his thick arms come crossing together over his chest. AT least he keeps his eyes on her this time around.

    He stays silent for a moment after that-- before a quiet sigh seems to signal some manner of relenting on his part. "...Look;" he mutters. "I wasn't kidding when I said it was my duty. But... IN all fairness, it's a duty I put upon myself, you know? I don't... like leaving people that I could help... unhelped, I guess. And you were in the kind of situation that at least made me feel like could be very dangerous for you. So I worried, okay?"

    Aaaand now he does turn his eyes away from her. "...And so maybe I do enjoy your company some too. ...And you kind of. I don't know. Maybe I see... some of myself, in some parts of you. In some of the problems you've told me you're facing."
EMI v248.1 2018-08-20 14:52:27 95100
    "I believe you. I do not doubt that you feel some measure of duty to seeing to my safety and well-being once you realized my situation. I appreciate all that you've done for me, and it is touching that you were concerned at my absence." Emi's mototone voice might make one wonder about the sincerity of her words if they weren't accustomed to her way of talking. She does mean what she says.

    "I am glad you enjoy my company. I also think there are many ways in which we are similar. I also think there are many ways in which we are different. The differences I have seen thus far are agreeable ones." Because of the way she's facing she'll notice the food being delivered before Alexis, reaching over now to lift her disposable chopsticks and break them apart just in time for the Ramen to be set down in front of her.

    She has, at least, learned it's probably rude to eat while staring directly at someone, so she lowers her gaze to her bowl and pulls some noodles to her lips with her chopsticks before slurps them up, as is customary. After finishing her bite she'll look back to Alexis. It's pretty spicy, if not like anything you'd find at the Korma Chameleon, and otherwise good and well made.
Stahlritter 2018-08-20 15:00:31 95101
    "I do consider you my friend," Alexis says suddenly almost as if an ultimatum, and he even allows himself to actually look at her while he's at it. "In case... I don't know, you thought there was a chance I didn't. So I would be *mighty* upset if something did happen to you.

    When the ramen does come along, he does uncross his arms for the sake of actually eating, and he remains in silence for a moment for the sake of catching some of the porky goodness there, for a quick taste. He doesn't stare at her while eating, either, but he does give occasional peeks at her.

    "...Though I do worry," he murmurs eventually again, with a vaguely teasing tone. "That I might have turned you into an otaku by accident by making you watch Jojo with me that one time."
EMI v248.1 2018-08-20 15:10:18 95103
    "I would be upset if something happened to you as well. I am glad that we are friends." Emi stares into her ramen bowl for a few moments. "I think I may have mismanaged the perception of time in this culture." She looks up to Alexis, "Is more than a month an especially long time for a lack of contact between friends?" She is quiet for a moment before adding, "I was adrift for a very, very long time. It hardly feels like I've been here any time at all."

    Afterwards she goes about eating some more, taking small bites of pork and egg while he speaks. Afterwards she looks back up towards him with her head still tilted downwards. "I do spend the majority of my time in my residence. I do not require strenuous activity to maintain my physique as you might. I do require mental stimulation and entertainment, though only a quarter of my viewing has been anime if that particular medium concerns you."
Stahlritter 2018-08-20 15:16:52 95104
    "From what I understood you were adrift in space for much longer than I have even lived so... I think I can understand the feeling of discrepancy there," Alexis murmurs. "WEll. I can imagine it, at least, if not know it."

    "And I imagine a lot of people would feel envious of you for not needing to exercise. Look at me for example--" His fist comes bumping against the front of his chest, through the hoodie. "This muscle mass isn't easy to maintain. Even less so now that I need even more calories thanks to all the magic output I have with my Device."

    And then, of all things? He sticks his tongue out at her when she explains her division of time. "I was teasing, you doof."
EMI v248.1 2018-08-20 15:28:20 95105
    "That is correct." Emi replies about her time spent in space. She doesn't elaborate, mostly because it probably isn't needed.

    "They might. If what I have perceived is correct they would be more envious that food intake is equally as irrelevant to me as activity." As if on some kind of cue she eats more of her noodles.

    Then when Alexis sticks his tongue out at her she blinks in surprise and pauses for a moment after finishing her bite again. "Ah. Well. You got me." A small smile. Then she considers his chest for a moment, looking to where he bumped himself with his fist. "How much food and effort is required to maintain it? I do not see very many others built as you are."
Stahlritter 2018-08-20 15:34:27 95106
    ...Alexis might actually feel a bit self conscious when Emi looks at him in such a manner. At least the hoodie is baggy enough to not show off *much* of him, but still.

    "Ah, well... let's see. An average human requires around two thousand calories to function properly without gaining or losing body mass," he offers then. "At least that's what I read. I'm hardly a dietarian. Now... that's also assuming a regular daily effort of going to work, maybe some idle exercise... things like that. To gain muscle mass, you require plenty high protein-based food, to help regenerate the strained muscle, and..." He chews on his lip. "I don't need to do so muc hfocused exercise anymore, I suspect, on account of the fact that I spend most of my days running and leaping across rooftops and fighting Youma, but still... I have to do lifting exercises on a daily basis, regardless, since most of that only helps with stamin. And then eating all the energy required for actually conducting all that effort has to come frome somewhere too so..."

    His eyes flicker this way and that, as if though trying to make some calculations... but he ends up saying simply, "Let's just go with 'a lot', yeah?"
EMI v248.1 2018-08-20 15:45:56 95107
    Emi listens to his explanation about what it takes for a human to gain muscle mass. She looks to the pork and egg in his bowl of ramen as he speaks of protein and then back up to him afterwards. "That sounds like a lot of effort to maintain such physical prowess. I can see how it would be necessary in your line of work." After she says that she tilts her head slightly, "Are you no longer concerned with hiding your magical nature in public spaces? I am surprised you are speaking so openly in this setting given your previous caution."

    She'll then nod a little as he responds with a very generalized answer. "Very well. A lot." A moment later she considers aloud, "If lifting is a core part of your exercise, perhaps I could stand on your back while you did pushups? I believe that would be very effective."
Stahlritter 2018-08-20 15:53:08 95108
    "..:Honestly, a great deal of it kinda came just from doing stuff," Alexis points out sheepishly. "I used to... fight a lot even before I had my Armed Device or knew about magic anyhow. You know... gangers. Criminals. Mundane level stuff but still... turns out you end up becoming pretty fit when you spend most of your days brawling with a bunch of arschgeigen."

    At her suggestion, he squints his eyes. "... I remember how much you weighed when you let go of the antigravitation," he points out. "I am pretty sure that unless I had Kriegsfauste in active mode I would break my back in that kind of arrangement."
Stahlritter 2018-08-20 15:54:06 95109
    "Also," Alexis adds with a grunt of amusement. "What would I be supposed to tell anyone who walked in on me with a cute girl sitting on me?"
EMI v248.1 2018-08-20 16:00:17 95110
    "It sounds like you've led a very active lifestyle." Exactly opposite to the kind of lifestyle Emi has lived the last couple of months but differences can be interesting. "I would not get any fitter if I spent as much time brawling," she comments. "Though I would likely become more skilled in the act itself."

    As for how much she weighs without her flight magic active? Emi looks him in the eye, "It is not an all or nothing proposition. That is something I can control carefully. I would not wish to break your back."

    For once her own amusement actually shows on her face when he brings up what he might have to explain. She ignores the fact he changed standing to sitting and instead replies, "That you were grateful for the opportunity seems appropriate."
Stahlritter 2018-08-20 16:03:16 95111
    Rather than responding to any of the other things Emi says, Alexis instead damn near chokes on the noodles and pork he was shoveling in his face at the time she happens to make that last particular statement. It leads to a couple coughs and a few bumps given to his chest with a fist, before he gives an utterly wide-eyed look at the android.

    "...I genuienly cannot tell if you are just messing with me or if you still haven't learned anything of... um... certain courting rituals."
EMI v248.1 2018-08-20 16:05:41 95112
    Emi once more looks at Alexis with a completely neutral expression on her face. "Alexis. Did I not say I thought it would be best if we skipped the part where you pretended you do not like me? I also plainly stated that I took matters into my own hands. We are sitting in a lovely restaurant exchanging pleasant conversation and learning more about each other. This is a date." Monotone.
Stahlritter 2018-08-20 16:10:38 95114
    That particular deadpan statement from Emi, that brings out no smart comeback, no sarcastic words, nothing. Just... Alexis staring right back at Emi, blankly. The moment lasts for a long, seemingly infinite duration, with him only moving to blink his eyes every now and then, slowly. ...ANd for the fingers of his hand holding the chopstick to loosen up enough that the utensils are sent clattering down onto the table. Red steadily gathers up in his features, in a pink sort of flush that does not quite speak of the usual frustration that he sports with it.

    ".........Wuh?"

    Oh. Oh no. His brain just broke.
EMI v248.1 2018-08-20 16:18:47 95115
    A witty comment could fit here very well, but this isn't a situation where Emi wants to make him feel put off. People on this planet seem to have certain expectations of comfort and delicacy regarding various bonding rituals and this is certainly one of them.

    While he sits there doing little to nothing she lets him process it, idly noting the progress of the red and pink flush. She thinks to herself that the owner is probably annoyed his hood is still up, but figures Alexis is probably glad it is.

    Unlike herself where the expression of emotion is the difficulty Emi has realized that Alexis seems to have some issues understanding exactly what he's feeling at any given time. A very curious evolutionary trait. Once she finishes the solid portions of her bowl of ramen she uses the large plastic spoon provided to start on the broth. After her first spoonful she comments, "You needn't think of it as any sort of commitment, but I felt an initial trial was warranted. I hope you are also having an agreeable time."
Stahlritter 2018-08-20 16:26:48 95116
    FATAL SYSTEM ERROR. PLEASE REBOOT BIOS.

    It takes a moment before the boy seems to return back to this particular portion of reality, and it comes with a brief shake of his head-- not at her words, but rather as an effort to clear his own head.

    "...Sorry, just to... make sure I'm still following you here..." He says, eventually, with his chopstick - and in fact the entirety of his ramen - seems to have been forgotten. "We're talking... about a more-than-friends date?" Pause. "... With me?"
EMI v248.1 2018-08-20 16:34:53 95117
    "Yes."

    "Is there something you find particularly surprising about such a thing?" Emi asks, considering him further as he seems to slowly come to terms with what she's saying. "I did consider that you might find such a thing entirely inappropriate given my," short pause, "construction. But thinking on it you have treated me not only as a person, but specifically as a female-- which I do consider myself." Almost thinking aloud she continues, "For instance I find it unlikely my leading you by the hand would have been so flustering if you did not consider a 'more-than-friends' scenario a possibility."
Stahlritter 2018-08-20 16:45:11 95118
    It's a strange sensation. When the things you are hearing someone else say to you simultaneously making so muc hsense and... at the same time none whatsover.

    But the second part of that arrangement is mostly just because of his own personal issues rather than anything else.

    "Um..." He mumbles out again, and the pink color in his features seems to spread in both brightness and width as all the realization sinks in more and more.

    "I mean... is that... what you want?"
EMI v248.1 2018-08-20 16:56:09 95119
    "No. I thought I would take you out to eat on a 'more than friends' date because it was something I didn't want." Emi stares at Alexis for a moment before giving a more serious answer. "It is something I think is worth considering and trying. It seems like it could be fun and interesting, and you are someone I could see myself spending time with."

    Emi takes the time to have another couple spoonfuls of her ramen broth before speaking again. "I see few negative possibilities, especially at such an early stage. On the other hand leaving such feelings undressed and having them become contentions is a very common thread amongst the stories told in this culture."

    She sets her spoon down and places her hands in her lap, addressing Alexis a bit more formally. "As I said, this needn't be a commitment if that is not something you wish. I am myself unsure as to the potential success or longevity of such an arrangement if it is desired, but if I read the possibility of your attraction to me correctly there is nothing I have seen to make dating you a bad or undesirable thing. I see only positive potential outcomes, of varying degrees."
Stahlritter 2018-08-20 17:10:18 95120
    "... Well I am glad you have learned how to employ sarcasm," says Alex with a quiet snort. "...But I mostly asked that because I worried you might have... I don't know, offered it only because you perceived a desire for it on my end rather than having a desire for it yourself, you know?"

    He sheepishly picks up the chopsticks again, and brings them down to snatch some more noodles finally. "...It's a weird thought, I know, but. I don't know." He rolls one shoulder. "It's not like I haven't been in... a relationship before, but the whole concept seems a little weird to me still in spite of that. But..."

    He pauses to slurp up the noodles, and gives a somewhat sheepish look over at her. "... It's not a one-way street, right? So, if it's something you *want* then... we could give it a shot."
EMI v248.1 2018-08-20 17:21:09 95121
    That is something that requires a bit more thought from Emi than his previous questions- there's a lot more nuance to it. "That is not entirely clear. The entire concept is new to me. Two months ago I did not know what ramen was and I did not know I liked it until I tried it. Two months ago I also did not know what a 'girlfriend' was."

    She looks to Alexis and shakes her head, "I have not been in a relationship. I... cannot say whether it will be something I desire more of until I know more about what it means. I do see that when they work well those in the 'relationship' are happier. It is something I would like to try."

    Still sitting somewhat formally Emi adds, "That isn't the only thing. I would not want to go on a date with anyone just to try it. I have enjoyed conversation with you, I believe you to have a strong moral character that I appreciate, and as I said there are many ways in which we are similar. I believe that speaks to some level of..." she considers the right term for a moment before coming up with, "compatibility."
Stahlritter 2018-08-20 17:42:00 95122
    "...Well for once I am the one who knows more about that stuff then," Alexis notes with no small amount of mirth in his voice. He glances off away from her a bit akwardly momentarily, before looking back to her again. ANd finally, there's just a faint hint of a smile on his part.

    "Though I can't say I ever dated anyone who is several millenia older than I am. Not that you could tell by looking."

    The lst of the pork ramen is brought up to be slurped up, and... he extends his other hand over across the table, palm up-- as if though in offer to her. "...I'd be happy to be your boyfriend if you want me to be." THat might have been clear enough by the halfway point of this conversation already-- but perhaps he's saying that as a manner of a final decision, too.
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    "I truly would be robbing the cradle of life," Emi deadpans. She does take a moment to look at herself, "I am of the correct visual age group. And certainly not unattractive." It would be very unfortunate if she had a poor opinion of her body image, given it's something that'd be nearly impossible to change.

    Emi looks to Alexis' hand as he sets it close to her on the table. A moment later she reaches over and sets her hand on top of his, a rather accurate representation of how a biological specimen would appear. Unless, of course, he decides to check for a pulse- there's nothing of the sort to be found on her.

    "In that case I would be happy to be your girlfriend as well." She gives him an actual, genuine smile in return before adding. "I have no idea what is next. Most sources conflict."