#IlynaApartment – May 27, 2021

Ilyna is overwhelmed with emotions and nerves, so the hand on her neck doesn't give Halisi any distinct reaction to work with. She had clearly misread Halisi's earlier hesitation, fearing that she had given off the impression that she would not accept the slightest overstep; so, she was surprised by Halisi's blink. Truth be told, Ilyna doesn't know where to set the boundaries, and as the hypocrite she is, she is

being cautious about Halisi's. Her trailing off and looking away does bring some anticipation into Ilyna's facial features, but the question that follows give her pause. "I...," she begins to whisper back, but words fail her right away. Instead, she shifts a little closer, places a gentle hand on Halisi's upper back, closes her eyes and leans in for a kiss.

Halisi lets out a soft chuckle when Ilyna fails to speak. Luckily, her actions are loud and clear, and the doctor's hand shifts, knuckles brushing gently across the asari's cheek before she closes the distance between them with the lightest of kisses, her weight shifting a little on the couch. Maybe all caution hasn't been abandoned - she's letting Ilyna set the pace, waiting for her to deepen the kiss or pull back.

Ilyna keeps her eyes closed, but the nerves only get worse for every moment that Halisi delays it. The carress of her cheeks does draw a brief smile out of her, however, as she enjoys the sensation. Then, the kiss. She is a bit puzzled about how light it is, and it takes perhaps longer than exepected for the asari to realize Halisi's intention to let Ilyna steer the pace. This is it. She has made her decision that

has been inevitable from the day Ilyna picked up on Halisi's interest. Otherwise, she wouldn't have told her the secret, nor would she have kept deferring the decision to future-Ilyna again and again. She is deepening the kiss. The tingling feeling within her is starting to fade. Her other hand finds its way to Halisi's upper back, and Ilyna is so lost in it right now to mind that she's putting more weight on

Halisi than intended.

Halisi takes the queue given, responding in kind as the kiss is deepened. The lingering caution is swept away and her left hand shifts to Ilyna's side as the asari's arms wrap around her. Part of her is surprised by the eagerness, but she should have known, shouldn't she? Always holding back, not from a lack of want, but out of fear and responsibility. Who wouldn't relish letting go just a little when living like that? Her right hand

rises to cradle the back of Ilyna's head, fingertips tracing the grooves in her crests lightly. She doesn't seem in any rush to let go or end the kiss. They've earned the right to savor the moment as far as she's concerned. Savor the feeling of hands touching skin and fabric without hesitation, of the welcome sensation of Ilyna's weight against her, of the faintly lingering taste of brandy that permeates the kiss. The

documentary is still rolling, something about the mating rituals of arachnids in the depths of Sur'Kesh's rainforests. Maybe not the most romantic backdrop, but oh well.

Ilyna moves one of the hands up, her fingers gently tracing the skin on her neck above the sweater, gently brushing aside the hair getting in the way. It has not really sunk in yet that this is just the beginning; that even if this gets to the guilt and agony about leaving Halisi hanging off her shoulders, more challenges are bound to come. She does eventually let go of the kiss, pulling back slowly and opening her

eyes. "I... I really got carried away there," she whispers with a brief apologetic look, and a small chuckle follows. It's only now that she realizes just how much she's been leaning too heavily on Halisi and Ilyna does correct that a little. Her hands are still where she left them, however, and she maintains eye contact. The kiss has helped her nerves a great deal, but the caution is still present.

Halisi 's grip loosens as Ilyna pulls back, her words drawing out a warm, breathless laugh. "That's... quite alright." she assures through a big grin, right hand withdrawing to trace the edge of her own lips, checking for smudged lipstick. Her silver eyes remain fixed on Ilyna's, and her left hand remains right where it is, thumb brushing idly back and forth across the asari's side. Her head tilts a little as she studies her face, the

smile still firmly in place. "You've been wanting to do that for a while, haven't you?" she asks, words little more than a mumble, tone teasing.

Ilyna relaxes when Halisi speaks, and her smile grows wider. She moves her hand to Halisi's shoulders, mirroring her thumb movements somewhat absent-mindedly. The question does make her stop, and break eye contact for a moment as her cheeks grow a more purple shade. "Mhm," Ilyna hums, and for a moment she considers leaving it at that level of specificify. Instead, she adds, "That's why... it has been so difficult."


Halisi snickers quietly, fond amusement in her eyes as Ilyna blushes. "Me too." she admits to ease the asari's embarrassment, smile softening as her right hand reaches out again, running the back of her index finger along Ilyna's jawline. "How do you feel?"

Ilyna manages to compose herself with the reassurance from Halisi. The question does make her tilt her head -- towards the caressing hand. There's a lot of thoughts on her mind, and it's hard to really put her finger on exacty what she feels. She can't even be pessimistic about the challenges ahead, because she knows she won't be facing them alone. Not right now, at least. "Great," is all she decides to say, her

voice a bit uneven. She blinks a few times to hold back the tears treatening to get out.

Halisi 's smile widens. "Well... that's a first, I think." she comments, tone teasing but warm - it's nice to see something other than worry or guilt on her face. The uneven tone and the conspicious blinks that follow soon makes her smile fade into something more somber, and her right hand goes back to Ilyna's neck, left wrapping around her back as she pulls her into a tight hug. "Come here..." she murmurs.

Ilyna lets herself be pulled into the hug, winding her arms around her holding on tightly. She shifts a bit to rest her chin on Halisi's shoulder. Ilyna doesn't say anything at the moment, instead drawing deep but trembling breaths. It's a futile effort, however, as she feels a tear trickling down her cheek.

Halisi presses a light kiss against the side of Ilyna's head, hand running up and down her back in a soothing, repeating motion. She remains that way for a while, giving Ilyna a moment before breaking the silence. "You know, I half expected someone to come bursting through the window again..." she muses quietly as her gaze falls on the darkness beyond the glass, trying for humor.

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