09.04.3013: Second First Date
Summary: Rebecca and Ioan try to spark some memories by going on a date, to the place where they had their first date.
Date: 02 September 2013
Related: None
Ioan Rebecca 

Mordain House — Pale Horse Caravan, The Vale
This small home is quaint and comfortable. A small family room is set around a holodisplay on one wall, with well-worn chairs and a sofa facing it. A large, padded ottoman serves as a coffee table with no sharp edges. Built-in shelves on the walls are filled with children's toys, books, and tchotchkes. There is a small dining area between the family room and modest kitchen. Down a hall is a bathroom and two bedrooms, one serving as a nursery.

The entire home shows the age of the Pale Caravan in the aged walls and flooring, but it has solid bones and a homey feel. The colors are muted greens and tans, reminiscent of the Plains of Ares in Spring and Summer.

04 September 3013

Ioan hasn't been sleeping too well these past few weeks. He's been restless, waking up in the night sweating and screaming. After one particular bad dream Ioan sits up suddenly and begins to breath heavily. Looking around the room he sighs a little in relief and looks over to his sleeping wife. He smiles at her, getting up and shuffling sleepily to the kitchen, looking for something to eat.

Rebecca has always been a light sleeper, and when she rolls over and feels no one beside her, she stirs. She pulls on a light bathrobe and shuffles out into the kitchen after Ioan. "Couldn't sleep?" she asks with a yawn, her hair mussed and her eyes heavily lidded.

Ioan has grabbed a banana and has taken a bite or two out of it when Rebecca comes into the kitchen. "No, I had another dream about the last year." He says, rubbing his eyes. "They took more then just me, there were others… I don't know where they are. Not all were able to handle the drugs." He says, walking closer to Rebecca, and giving her a hug. "Some of them didn't make it. They just… discarded their bodies. They're monsters."

Rebecca moves to him and slides her arms around him gently. "But you're alive, and back with the people who love and need you, Ioan. Remember that when the dreams happen. You are a survivor, a husband, a father, a friend, and a soldier."

Ioan nods, Rebecca's encouragement seems to help him some. "That's right. We're soldiers." He says, giving his wife a sleepy smile. He looks exhausted. "I am so happy that you found me, I'm just… sad for those who weren't as lucky as me. All of those people had families, kids, friends. I almost feel like I cheated somehow." He gives Rebecca a kiss with a small hint of passion. "I'm so lucky to have you, not many would hold out for a whole year."

"Not many have you for a husband," Rebecca points out. "You are worth waiting for, Ioan. And you're experiencing survivor's guilt. There's going to be a lot of that going around during this war." She moves to the fridge to rummage around for a late night snack for herself. "I'm currently grateful that Sophia is sleeping through the night."

Ioan grins, "I guess I am, aren't I?" He says, giving her a smile. "Sorry I keep waking you up like this, maybe eventually I'll start to have good dreams, and remember happy times." He says, moving to the living room and taking a seat on the couch. "We did pretty good during that scouting mission. It felt good to be back out shooting things again."

"We did. I spent a lot of time in the last year, taking out my worries and frustrations on the archery range. I've gotten better than I used to be," Rebecca notes with a small smile. She fixes herself a plate of cheese cubes and coldcuts to nibble on before joining him on the couch. "You did well. Glad you're back in the saddle again."

Ioan gives Rebecca a smile. "That doesn't surprise me. I would have done the same, I think." He takes a piece of cheese from her plate and puts it in his mouth, chewing and swallowing before speaking again. "So, when did my grandmother say she'd watch the little one for our date?" He says, scooting himself next to Rebecca. He looks almost impatient.

Ioan gives Rebecca a smile. "That doesn't surprise me. I would have done the same, I think." He takes a piece of cheese from her plate and puts it in his mouth, chewing and swallowing before speaking again. "So, when did my grandmother say she'd watch the little one for our date?" He says, scooting himself next to Rebecca. He looks almost impatient."

"She'll be by to watch Sophia this afternoon," Rebecca says with a grin. She leans in to kiss her husband gently on the lips. "Can you wait that long? Or should I see if the teenager next door can take the morning shift too?"

Ioan kisses her back and grins at her as he speaks. "We have an on-call teenager? Why didn't you tell me about all of these connections?" He says, grinning all the more. "I like the way you think. Call the teenager."

Rebecca grins back and she goes to call the babysitter. "Go take a shower. I'll grab one after I pack our picnic lun-er breakfast," she calls after him.

Ioan gives his wife another kiss before standing up. "If you get done packing before I get out… I'll leave the door unlocked." He says, giving her a wink and a roguish grin before heading toward the shower.

The baby sitter arrives after the couple are cleaned and dressed and packed up for their mini-trip. Rebecca leaves Lizzy instructions for Sophia and information for Edna when she arrives. She has a small soft-sided cooler which she hooks to the back of Spectre's saddle, and a bag on the otherside, before she gets on the horse. She leads them out onto the plains, towards the Southern Wilds where she knows a quiet copse of trees with a small stream running through it. Once there, she spreads a blanket out near the stream, and sets their things on it. She's in a simple, light and flowy summer dress, with her hair down and loose.

Ioan has on a nice navy blue tunic and his best riding pants. It's been the first time in a while that he's been in nice clothing, and throughout the ride to the intended location tugs at the neck of his shirt. Regardless, he still intends to look as nice as possible for their date. After dismounting from the horse he comments, "This is a nice place… did we ever come here? Or is this somewhere new?"

"We came here on our first real date," Rebecca murmurs, trying to help spark some memories. "You found this stream on one of your patrols, and brought me here for a picnic just like this. And it was where you first kissed me," she adds with a smile. She opens the cooler and pulls out some fruit and muffins, hardboiled eggs and salt, and a thermos of coffee with mugs, plates, and utensils.

Ioan takes a deep breath, a little upset with himself for forgetting something so important to the two of them. "Well, it's only fitting that you take me here. It's almost like the circle is complete." He says, smiling at his wife. He quickly digs into the fruit, popping a strawberry into his mouth. "This was a good idea, coming here."

"I thought so too," Rebecca chimes. She cracks and peels a hardboiled egg, salting it before nibbling it and sipping some coffee. "I like the sound of the stream. They say sometimes sounds or tastes can help with memories."

"I've heard that too. Been doing a little bit of research on it." Ion says as he eats more of the fruit. "I do know this fruit thing is new, though. I cannot get enough of it. It's just… the right kind of sweet." He says, before he munches on some blueberries. "I've been trying to remember things, a few techniques, but nothing yet. Sometimes I think it'll just come to me when I'm not looking." He says, looking up at the sky and sighing with content.

"I think the trying is what's stymieing you, Ioan. Just be you, and it'll come back," Rebecca assures him. She plucks up a chunk of cantaloupe and raises it to his lips to feed it to him. "I'm hoping you remember something else that happened here too. A little less than two years ago."

Ioan opens his mouth to receive the cantaloupe and chews on it thoughtfully. "That was a particularly sweet piece." He comments, opening his eyes and turning to face Rebecca. "The memory is still a little fuzzy, but I think I might have an idea. Did we get married here?" He asks

"Close, but not quite. Happened a bit after the wedding," Rebecca teases with a grin. The light breeze blows tendrils of her hair into her face. Without her usual ministrations, it's slightly curly, like their daughters.

"I see…" Ioan says, giving Rebecca a smile. "We picked a good spot for it, didn't we?" He says, grinning. "I don't think we could have picked a better spot."

"We made Sophia here," Rebecca confesses with a light smile and a faraway look in her eyes, one of memory. She reaches a hand to stroke his cheek lightly. "One of the best days of my life, and one that gave me joy every day after. We made a beautiful baby, Ioan."

"That's what I meant by we picked a good spot." Ioan says, giving her a smile. "I must have failed to communicate that." He grabs a muffin and tears a piece off and begins to eat it. "I'll say we did. She's only beautiful because of you though, I just helped." He says, grinning.

Rebecca chuckles and she sets her coffee aside, sliding over to kneel beside Ioan and run her fingers through his hair. "It makes me so happy to go to sleep beside you every night. That was the hardest thing, sleeping without you there, knowing you weren't just out on patrol."

Ioan lays down, placing his head on Rebecca's lap. He closes his eyes again, enjoying the moment. The warmth of the morning sun, the babbling of the stream, fingers running though his hair. He opens his eyes, looking into his beloved's eyes. "I'm here now, and I won't leave again. You don't have to worry about that."

"Don't promise that, Ioan. Not during this war. Either of us could be gone in an instant," Rebecca murmurs with a sad expression. "Let's just enjoy the time we're given, with each other, with Sophia." She bends down to kiss his brow, then his lips, lightly.

Ioan frowns. "Right, the war…" He sighs, but will perk right back up when Rebecca kisses him. "She's getting so big. Walking, talking… I almost don't want to think about it." He says sitting up, twirling a lock of her hair around his finger.

"I think about it all the time. I want to see her grow up, go to school, ride her first horse, fall in love and marry and have her own beautiful children," Rebecca murmurs wistfully. Her fingers play over the features of his face, as if relearning the map of his bone structure.

"I'll enjoy watching her grow up, I know I will. There's just part of me that would be content with her being this way forever, though." He says playfully biting at her fingers. There's no force behind it, though. "I just want the world to stop, let me have a chance to catch up." He says, laughing.

Rebecca laughs with him, and slides down on the blanket beside him to lay her head on his chest and listen to his heart beating, confirming he's real and alive and home. "We have a lot of lost time to make up for, Ioan," she murmurs.

Ioan plays more with her hair, this time running his fingers though, lightly massaging her scalp. "That we do, my love. I think we're off to a good start." He looks up at the sky, peering at some of the clouds. "What do you think that one looks like?" He says, pointing one of the larger ones.

Rebecca peers up at the cloud and ponders the shape. "I think it looks like a unicorn. See the sharp triangle there? Like a horn? And the flowing mane." She gestures with her finger as she describes it, reveling in the warmth of the early morning sun.

"I can see that, I was thinking it looked like someone wielding a sword." Ioan comments, lightly taking the hand that Rebecca gestured with, retracing what he saw. "I love you." He says, finally.

Rebecca turns her head to smile at him, looking years younger in the moment of peace. "I love you," she murmurs back, before pulling his face down to hers for a kiss.

Ioan leans in as he's being pulled down for a kiss. There's a hint of passion and longing in his kiss. He might not cognitively remember the significance of this place, but he's not forgotten the feelings associated with it.

"Want to pretend to make another Sophia here?" Rebecca murmurs to her husband. Clearly she's been taking measures to not get sidelined during a war.

"I thought you'd never ask…" Ioan says, leaning in for another kiss. He's not holding back anymore, almost lost in his passion and need for his wife.

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