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Jamie Parata

"You may not know me, but I probably know you."

0 · 443 views · located in New York

a character in “Uptown Living”, as played by SuperfluousBuns

Description

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{ Full Name }
Jameson Parata

{ Nickname }
Jamie

{ Birthday }
August 5th, 1998 (Leo)

{ Age }
Seventeen

{ Sexual Orientation }
Bisexual

{ Grade Level }
Twelfth Grade

{ Hometown }
Maui, Hawaii

{ Character Role }
The Secret Keeper

#803343



Personal Life


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{ Family }
Daniel Parata || Father || "He's a dork. A very clever one."
Jamie has a good relationship with all of his family, but before any other with his father. Daniel Parata is a self made millionaire who made his fortune in a tech company that specializes in medicine. But more importantly than that, he is a good man whose success was merely a side effect of a genuine desire to help others. Compared to the other East Siders, his family lives modest lives because his father believes in donating to charity, and not indulging in opulence. It is due to his father that Jamie is one of the most grounded people at St. Jude's. Daniel is constantly working, but has always managed to be there when Jamie needs him most.
Quinn Parata || Step-mother || "My father deserves happiness. He deserves Quinn."
Jamie has always believed stories of wicked stepmothers to be poppycock, despite their common nature. Certainly, he was at first hesitant to welcome a new face into his small family, but since then he has come to appreciate her, if not as a mother then as a friend. She is a smart woman, a successful hospital director who met his father through their work. She is kind, if a bit too eager to be approved of. She is a genuinely good person, and makes his father very happy.
Elia Parata || Sister || "She's a troublemaker- but one smile and you'll melt."
Elia is only six, but she has Jamie wrapped around her index finger. She is doted on by her mother, who thought she would not be able to have a child, but absolutely spoiled by her elder brother. She's mischievous and intelligent beyond her years, and if you start Jamie speaking about her he'll rave on like a grandmother speaking about their first grandchild. He's quite affectionate.
Moira Ellison-Parata || Deceased Mother || "She taught me to crawl, walk, run, and swim."
Jamie's biological mother was born into money. She met Daniel when they were both studying at Stanford, he a scholarship student and she a legacy. They're marriage was happy, but not without the occasional arguments and a brief separation period. She was stubborn, kind, impulsive, and open minded. She died before he was four, so he has very few memories. She attended Constance, and was the captain of the Girl's Soccer Team at the time.
David Ellison || Uncle || Moira's brother, and therefore Jamie's biological uncle.
Lani Amasio-Ellison || Cousin || Childhood friend of Jamie's, as well as his cousin. It's kinda complicated, at least on Jamie's end.

{ Home Life }
Many of his peers have home lives that are just as dramatic as their school lives. Jamie is fortunate to have a family that is a welcome respite from the often crazy halls of school. He was born in Maui, Hawaii. At this point, his father had already found great success in his medical tech company, and thus could afford a nice, but not extravagant, home on the beach. The family didn't really need a large house- it's three members found themselves preferring the sand to the carpet, and the sun to the lighting fixtures. His father would often set up his computer on the deck during those days he worked from home, watching as his then wife, Moira, taught Jamie how to swim, surf, run in the sand, and kick a ball. She played soccer at Constance Billard in her youth, and would tell him stories about the elite New York schools she grew up in, fascinating him. His best friend was Lani Amasio-Ellison, his cousin who was raised alternatingly by his grandfather and her grandmother. They grew up as thick as thieves, him always stumbling after her on adventures.

Jamie never did really get to know his mother as much as he may have liked to. When he was four years old, she went to New York for a class reunion. She was in a car accident on the way back to the airport, and died the next morning. It's strange- of course he misses her, but he's sort of grown up with her being gone. People still apologize when she is brought up, and it always feels unnecessary and awkward to him. His life carried on- it affected his father far more than it did Jamie. He kept swimming. Kept playing with Lani, surfing, running up and down the sandy coast. He knew his father was sad, was lonely. But the now even smaller family remained close and loving, especially with his beloved cousins and grandparents living nearby. When he was in elementary school, his best friend was shipped off to New York for a superior education. They kept in constant contact for a year until his father revealed that they would be moving to New York as well. He had proposed to the woman whom he had fallen in love with on the East Coast, a kind and skilled Hospital Director in New York. The Family of two moved to the Big Apple, and while some part of Jamie resisted the entrance of a new person, he was thrilled to be reunited with his best friend. Within a year of the marriage he has a new baby sister, and he adored her, his only sibling.

And as he adjusted to his new life in New York, with Lani as his biggest life-line, he started to realize she was more than just a cousin to him. As kids he had thought they'd get married, too young of course to realize why that could never happen. They laughed about it when they grew older. But it's gotten to the point of undeniable- Jamie is in love with his cousin. She's his best friend, his blood relative, both things that should make this impossible. They grew up taking baths together and tripping over soccer balls, for christ's sake. But it's true all the same. And that's his secret, the one he keeps beneath all of those he overhears or is told. It's made more painful by his inability to act on it, regardless of rejection or not. There is no closure for this kind of situation- just a quiet, gentle kid in love with the very, very wrong girl. Luckily, his discretion in other matters applies to this as well. No one knows about his feelings, especially not Lani. And it'll stay that way. Part of him actually looks forward to college- he hopes distance will make the heart grow less fond.

{ Academic Career }
Jamie is what one might refer to as a wanderer, in terms of cliques. His participation in a variety of activities and friendliness towards people in all social spheres are what have made him someone trusted by so many. He is a jack of all trades- member of the soccer team, but not the star player. Part of the photography club, but hardly a future photojournalist. He does well in academics, but will never be the top of the class. Truth be told, he attends St Jude's simply because his mother once attended the sister school, and hoped that her children would have the same quality of education. Perhaps she had forgotten the bitterness underlying the benefits of the school- more likely she was very similar to her son. Friend of all because she threatened no one. He also often works in set construction for the joint productions of the two schools, and is known to pop in on gardening club meetings from time to time.

{ Future Plans }
His father would of course love for his son to attend his alma mater, Stanford, and it would be easier for him than it was for Daniel, who had to work his way through college to make up for what scholarships didn't cover. But Daniel is supportive in anything his children with to pursue, even if it is a precarious path. Truth be told, Jamie has no idea what it is that he wishes to do with his life, though he feels pressured to make his decision very soon. He will likely attend Stanford, go to medical school, and work for his father's company before taking it over. Truth be told though, even if he hasn't quite realized it himself, he'd like to be a teacher or a pediatric nurse. Jamie doesn't really have ambition- but he has heart. Those professions are likely to be laughed out at a school like St. Jude's, of course, as being not lucrative or influential enough.


Disposition


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{ Discreet, Gentle, Self-loathing, Caring, Lackadaisical, Spectator }
Jamie Parata is a friend to all and enemy to none, which is not an easy feat to achieve in schools as cutthroat as St. Jude's and Constance Billard's. Part of what allows him to maintain this precarious but pleasant position is his discretion. While gossip may be the backbone of the Upper Eastside social scene, Jamie prefers to stand upright with the support of silence instead. He knows when it is best to keep his head down, when it is well-advised that he simply shut his mouth and allow things to follow their natural order. And this knack for staying silent and keeping secrets, especially those that can be the ruin of others, makes him a valuable commodity at two of the most high-stakes high schools on the East Coast: someone to talk to. Everyone needs someone that they can speak freely with without fear of judgment or betrayal. Everyone needs a secret keeper- and that position is filled by the quiet soccer player with the easy smile. He can be relied on, even when the situation is at its most tempting to open his mouth. Of course, over his years he has come to hunch with the weight of the secrets that he carries half the burden of. He has become a sort of Switzerland- appreciated for his neutrality, and even when one would rather he take sides, left to his own devices due to the value he stores. Switzerland has banks. He has information.

Not that he would ever hold this information over someone. Had he the ambition, Jamie could likely have come to have significant influence over his peers due to the web of drama that he knows every detail on. But he is far too gentle, too sweet to be corrupted by such an influence. Much like his father, he is grounded and quiet, careful and kind. Jamie could never hurt a fly, even in his own defense. In fact, in his own defense is the very last time that Jamie would ever aspire to hurt someone. Underneath his sincere smiles and soft laughter is his own burden, the original foundation on which the secrets of others lie. He has a self loathing streak a mile wide. Everyone has something or someone they dislike- Jamie has himself. His ease comes from a love for others, his love for others comes from a belief that everyone has some beauty in them. Everyone but himself. He'd never voice his insecurity out loud, of course. Not even his closest friends know of his personal demons. Not even Lani- partially because, truth be told, she's the source of some of them.

Another trait that distinguishes himself from the average St. Jude's student is his lack of ambition. He seems to have no drive to change his life, no goals that he is actively striving for. He is too happy to simply be tugged around in whichever direction, and to follow the path laid before him. Perhaps happy is not the correct word- he simply doesn't quite know what else to do. This is how he becomes non-threatening. Lack of drive leaves him average in terms of skill, and means that he makes no enemies in competition or the mad climb for power. He is no leader, no prince. Jamie is just another kid not sure what they want to do with their life. And that doesn't seem to be changing anytime soon, despite his near proximity to so many peers who fight so hard for what they want. He has often felt like little more than a spectator in life- a reactor, never an actor.

{ Hobbies }
|| Photography || Being Around People || Reading || Surfing || Going on Walks || Napping || Playing Soccer ||

{ Bad Habits }
|| Falling Asleep in Class (Especially Right After Lunch) || Tends to Space Out Easily || Responds to Questions Several Moments After They Are Asked || Terrible Diet || Takes Terrible Care of His Books || Never Brushes his Hair || Spoils His Sister || Procrastinates on Assignments || Poor Posture ||


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{ Likes }
|| Surfing || Being Around People || Biographies and Memoirs || Napping in the Sun || The Beach || Sunny Days || Summertime || Warm Weather || Kindness || Dazzling People || Playing Soccer || Assists || People Watching || Comforting People || Others || Big Cities || Small Towns || His Family || Passionate People || Game of Thrones || Seafood || Dropping in on Clubs || Watching Plays || Building Things || Productivity || Kafka's The Metamorphosis || Cuddling || Movie Marathons with Friends || Soft T-Shirts || Swimming || The Smell of Clean Laundry ||

{ Dislikes }
|| Being Centerstage || Himself || Designing Sets || Being Complimented || Scoldings in Class || When is Stepmother Feels the Need to Try Too Hard || Isolation || Long Spans of Time Alone || Public Speaking || Class Presentations || Fantasy Novels || Flitting About All the Time || Steak, Beef || Brunches || The Subway System || Taxis || Gossiping || Broken Promises || Keeping Secrets From Loved Ones || The Phantom of The Opera || Winter Clothing || Formal Clothing || Brushing His Hair || Surveys For the Future || Applications || Testing || Individually Winning ||


Physical Description

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{ Face Claim }
Calum Hood

{ Height }
5'11

{ Weight/Build }
160lb || Somewhat Lanky with Lean Muscles

{ Hair Color }
Dark Brown

{ Eye Color }
Dark Brown

So begins...

Jamie Parata's Story

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Anissa Savage Character Portrait: Lani Amasio-Ellison Character Portrait: Jamie Parata Character Portrait: Adeline Arnault Character Portrait: Kateri Eshkan Character Portrait: Ness Oberlin Character Portrait: Sydney Persson Character Portrait: Cassidy Knox Character Portrait: Liam Koch Character Portrait: Hunter Devlin Character Portrait: Avan Harrison Character Portrait: Liam Brooks Character Portrait: Nova Blanchett Character Portrait: Ellis Vargas Character Portrait: Tyler Owen
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#, as written by royals
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It was September 3rd, a Thursday, and the first official day of school at St. Jude's, and its sister school, Constance Billard. The day before had been orientation day, a day that was mostly scheduled for freshman, but technically required for all students. Most juniors and seniors were finished with orientation day by noon, or so, after sitting through short introductions to each of their classes, while following that, the freshman had to sit through a presentation about their school, that always seemed to drag on. Hunter could still remember how he had nearly fallen asleep during his freshman year presentation. Not even the jitters and excitement of attending a new school could keep him from quickly growing uninterested when the dean of students took the stage and began to lecture on and on about St. Jude's history. It got to a point where most kids actually preferred the real first day of school, even though that entailed doing actual work and assignments, over orientation day. It was easier to appreciate the first day of school though, when the week started on a Thursday, and after that day of classes, and Friday's, the students were treated to a long holiday weekend, thanks to Labor Day. Even if you weren't one of the students invited to Sydney Persson's annual Labor Day white party in the Hamptons, Labor Day was likely something you looked forward to. If you didn't have an event to attend, at least it was like you were given one extra day to finish up any missed summer plans. Hunter was one of those students who did have Sydney's party to look forward to on Sunday, but additionally, he was planning to throw a big, impromptu party on Friday night. Like most of Hunter's parties, it wouldn't be anything official, like what Sydney would be hosting over the weekend. There wouldn't be any fancy decorations or little finger sandwiches, or wait staff there to keep guests happy. Hunter would simply wait until his parents left for their own Hamptons weekend, have his friends haul the kegs up to his apartment, bring in the bottles, and maybe some weed or party drugs, if anyone wanted, and then in would come all of his friends and guests. It wouldn't be anything fancy, but in a world where everything had to be fancy to be socially acceptable, sometimes it was nice to act like normal high school kids, just trying to get away with a house party... even if that "house" the party was being thrown in wasn't some shabby house in the suburbs, but a penthouse apartment in the Upper East Side.

Right now, Hunter knew that he needed to put the focus of his party on the back burner, for the time being. He had an hour, or so, until he needed to leave for school, and he had only just rolled out of bed. Before hopping into the shower, he sent out a few text messages to some friends. Though he had seen most of his guy friends the day before at orientation, he hadn't stuck around for long enough to socialize with any of the Constance Billard girls, so he texted a few of them, as well as Liam Koch.

To: Liam
Gonna stop for a BLT on the way. Want me to bring u anything or you good?

To: Lani, Adeline, Sydney
Keep your schedule clear for Friday, ladies

To: Ness
So... since you came to my final party of last year, I expect to see you at my first of this year, on Friday. No excuses ;)

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Lani Amasio-Ellison Character Portrait: Jamie Parata Character Portrait: Adeline Arnault Character Portrait: Sydney Persson Character Portrait: Hunter Devlin
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Mood: Contemplative ღ Outfit ღ Location: Adeline Arnault's Home



"Wow..." Lauren - and yes, who else but Lauren Kyles, an esteemed private chef from none other than Ultimate Champions on Chopped, to cook for the Arnault family in New York - muttered, the silver spoon she had used to taste just a bit of the crème anglaise Lani was going to drizzle over the lemon ricotta pancake souffle slices once she had actually pulled it out of the oven. While Lani could have either stayed in bed complaining to herself about how she really didn't want to go to school or thinking about things she didn't want to think about, the best course of action was in getting her girls something to eat. Once Orientation had ended yesterday, Lani and Sydney hadn't decidedly collectively to jump Adeline last night since some people decided to ditch their best friends over the summer. It had consisted of more laughing and selfies than actual talking, but it was a relaxing night and it wasn't too much of a surprise for Lani to take over the kitchen whenever she was at someone's house. It was always better with Lauren or her own private chef, though. They actually had critiques, as opposed to Lani just being told that the food was great.

"Wow, yay? Nay? Maybe?" Lani curiously wondered, swiping back the stray strands of her honey blonde hair, which was tied back into a high bun. Lani bit her lip at the very serious expression on Lauren's face before the dark-skinned woman grinned. "I-it's really good. Anglaise is usually really easy, but you added a hint of cinnamon and nutmeg, which will compliment the lemon and the berries." Lani sighed in relief, a triumphant grin of her own forming on her own lips. "Good. That's...that's good. We should get the rest of the food together and then I'll make sure the girls are up." With that finished, Lani hurried to cut the simmering pan off and turned to plating the rest of the food. Lani was already dressed for the day with barely a lick of makeup - and that was mostly because it was established that the heavier pounds of it that others were known for sharpened Lani's face. Combined with her fresh-faced look was a simple look. For one, it was way too early for her brain to catch up to being okay with uniforms. Two, it was never that Lani particularly liked them anyway; she was the one, for all her leadership positions at Constance, to threaten the rules since she had a deep love for wearing pants or shorts instead of the typical skirts. And three, she just really didn't care. If she could, she would honestly cook the girls breakfast, have them watch a few good movies and then go get their nails done or something. It was always assumed that the esteemed Madam President enjoyed school and no one hated it more than Lani. Or if they did, they only assumed that she didn't. Which she did - with a passion. She just did school well enough to not have to worry about it later when she wanted to have fun.

Or be given a speech.

With Lauren focusing on the berry mimosas - and virgin, for the girls, including a certain Cassidy Knox whom Lani had been making the executive decision to not think about - and veggie Eggs Benedict - Lani focused on the butternut squash hash. Or at least, she was semi-focused on that and also her latent thoughts of Jamie. While she was excited to see everyone and have more time with them, Jamie was becoming a different case. It was a difficult thing to process but Lani was pretty sure Jamie was...avoiding her. She just didn't understand the why. Before New York, they had practically lived in each other's back pockets. Wherever you saw one, you saw the other. Even when they adjusted better to the New York Upper East Side life, the two had still managed to remain as inseparable as before, and Lani...depended on him. She depended on all of her best friends to some degree, but Jamie was special. He had always been there - here - and not so...far away. And Lani didn't think she was being dramatic either. At the same time, it wasn't as serious, or at least serious enough for her to corner him like she normally would. Not yet, anyway.

"That's almost done. How about you go make sure the girls are half ready? Little Miss Arnault has a habit of ignoring the breakfast call," Lauren said, the last bit coming out with a peculiar tone that had Lani tilting her head curiously, but acquiescing anyway. She grabbed her phone off the corner and headed towards the stairs, checking her messages and sending out two. The first was to Hunter. She liked when he made plans because they usually entailed parties and again, she wasn't a squeaky clean president. Not when she could spend a nice night at the Melting Pot with bottles of beer, fondue and watching sports. The second was to Jamie. Lani didn't care if he was beginning to be upset with her or whatever this thing was. He was her best friend. Lani didn't just relinquish people without a fight. Besides, she wouldn't be letting anyone go because this wasn't that serious. Just something...to think about. Focused again, she could have checked in Sydney's usual room, but Lauren was right. Adeline was the main one who ran late and Lani was not about to be late on the first day because certain brunettes wanted to hide under her thick duvet. As soon as she was at the door, Lani was knocking. "Adds! Addy! You better be up or I swear to God, I'll snatch you outta that bed."

To: Hunter
Sure thing

To: Jamie
MORNING!!!!!!

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Lani Amasio-Ellison Character Portrait: Jamie Parata Character Portrait: Ness Oberlin Character Portrait: Hunter Devlin Character Portrait: Avan Harrison Character Portrait: Nova Blanchett
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Outfit


xxxxEver a bundle of energy, Ness has been up for an hour and a half by the time she is standing outside of Jamie Parata's bedroom, rapping her knuckle against the door with an enthusiasm that seems entirely inappropriate at any hour before 10am. Earbuds are draped over her shoulder, and you can just catch "Moving Too Fast" drifting out from them. She's probably been listening to her ever growing morning playlist, a staple of the Ness Oberlin morning. With all of her almost sickeningly sunny energy, she's been on a run, showered, sketched, dressed, and went on an idle walk (with many stops to take photos of interesting things on her phone so that she can sketch them later), before arriving at Parata residence, which neighbors her own. Mr. Parata let her in with a smile and an offer of coffee-declined because she's never been one for coffee. It makes her sort of jittery, and she can never quite find the right amount of sugar and cream to put in it. Well- perhaps she hasn't given it enough tries to hit that sweet spot.

xxxx"Five more minutes," the drowsy teen on the other side mutters at a just audible level. His voice is thick with sleep- Ness still remembers when his voice had been at the same pitch as hers. He could have sung soprano with the middle school choir, if he'd wanted to. Jamie would never put himself anywhere near a stage, of course.

xxxx"In five more minutes you'll want five more minutes. C'mon Billy Buddy, rise and shine," she swings open the door and wrinkles her nose as that classic musty morning smell slams into her. Jamie is by all accounts, or at least by her own, a wonderful person. But boy, does he not know how to take care of himself or his own living area. Photographs are scattered on the ground, his trash bin needs to be emptied, and she nearly steps on a book when she steps in. A small girl with dark brown hair and clear green eyes seems to materialize behind Ness.

xxxx"Jay! You have to walk me to school don't forget that you promised. I'm not gonna be late!" and with all the dignity of a queen knowing she'll be obeyed, the girl walks off. Jamie sighs and sits up in his bed, hair a dark cloud over sleepy brown eyes. He's never been much of a morning person- it's something that won't go away as he ages. Jamie will have bags under his eyes for the rest of his days.

xxxx"The princess has spoken- get dressed Billy Buddy,"
Ness grins before stepping out and shutting the door behind her. She sits at the kitchen table, where Elia is making her own lunch- stubbornly refusing offers of help from her mother and father. The Parata family doesn't employ the staff that many of their peers do- probably because Mr. and Mrs. Parata think it unnecessary. Elia seems to do well enough at making her lunch without the help of a personal chef- although her lunch may be a bit unbalanced by the number of goldfish and Ritz crackers stuffed into her little Batgirl lunch box.

xxxxA laser noise draws her attention down to a text from Hunter, resident party king, and twin brother to an old friend of Ness's. She's mildly surprised at the direct invitation. One is always extended one way or another, but she usually doesn't receive a text from Hunter, likely due to the understanding that she doesn't often partake in the party scene. And when she thinks of his end of the year party in June- well, it certainly makes her very confused on whether she'd want to go to another one. It had been fun, sure, but a certain interaction left her with very confused opinions of house parties.

To: Hunter
I'm pretty creative- surely I can think of a few. Thanks for the invite!



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Outfit


xxxxOf course Jamie would never break a promise made to Elia- he absolutely dotes on his younger sister. So her works wake him up where Ness's fail, and after a little while he resurfaces, hair sort of smoothed, face washed, and clothing changed to a soft sweater and jean duo that fits enough within the parameters to work for the first day of school, if nothing else.

xxxx"What, you didn't make me any Breakfast El?" he says in mock offense, pouring himself a tall glass of orange juice and sitting beside Ness. He looks down at his phone, lit up with a text that must have come while he was getting dressed. He shifts away from Ness, who side glances at the screen curiously, and sends a quick response.

To: Lani
Good Morning

xxxxFar more to the point than he'd normally be with Lani, his best childhood friend, cousin, and. . .well. A plate clatters against marble countertop in front of him as El places a toast sloppily smeared with raspberry jelly on the counter for him, an almost smug and certainly proud smile on her face. Pocketing his phone, Jamie laughs and ruffs her hair. "Just the way I like it. You'll be a 5 star chef yet, princess."

xxxxPerhaps used to such flattery, Elia is more focused on making sure he scarfs down the toast and brushes his teeth quickly so that the trio can head out the door already. Luckily they live rather close to the elementary school, which traditional feeds into the private schools just a block or so away from it. They drop the little princess off, with a little hug from Ness and a big, spinning hug from Elia's elder brother. Just walking, he can pretend that he isn't going to have to deal with seeing Lani again after his little evasion act. Even he's kind of embarrassed of resorting to avoidance, but the kid is at a loss for what else to do.

xxxx"C'mon, Billy Buddy. Want to grab a smoothie on the way to school? Unless that toast was more filling than it looked, of course," Ness nudges Jamie and smiles, but she does seem slightly concerned for her friend, who seems more distracted than he normally is. Jamie smiles. This is why he's glad to have Ness around. Lani is amazing and beautiful, but it's nice to be close to someone who he isn't increasingly nervous around. Ness will never be anything more than a friend to him, and that provides more safety.

They pick up smoothies and arrive at the school a bit sooner than most familiar faces would have. Jamie raises his hand in greeting to Avan, and says hello to a few members of the soccer team while Ness is already speaking to a member of the Theatre department, curious about her plans for the set of the fall play. The discussion reminds her of Nova.

To: Nova
Hey! Have you chosen your side for play auditions yet? They're weirdly early this year, huh?


The school is putting on August: Osage county, which Ness is over the moon about. She loves house sets, and her plans for it are a bit ambitious. Luckily this school has the money to fund such ambition.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Lani Amasio-Ellison Character Portrait: Jamie Parata Character Portrait: Adeline Arnault Character Portrait: Kateri Eshkan Character Portrait: Ness Oberlin Character Portrait: Sydney Persson Character Portrait: Liam Koch Character Portrait: Hunter Devlin
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Mood: Hungry ღ Outfit ღ Location: En Route to Three Guys



"You know what," Lani practically growled in a low tone as she typed out a message to Sydney in response. Sydney's impatience could take a backseat at the moment. Lani was trying to be a good friend and she understood Sydney's ire (anyone with a heart would), she really did, but Lani was too hungry and already too done with school to be done - already - with one of her own best friends. Besides, there was a Cajun chicken sandwich and sweet potato fries calling her name, damnit. To distract herself from the texts she had to delete so as not to send to Sydney her actual displeasure, Lani also took the time to text her friends.

To: Ness, Kat, Jamie
Where r my peoples? Haven't seen anyone

To: Syd
Walking now babe. B there soon

Lani had been waiting on Adeline, who had been lagging for some inexplicable reason, when Sydney had left on her own volition. Lani had, for once (it really wasn't for once considering she did a lot of things Sydney asked her to do; see Winter Gala 2014 for proof), done as the blonde had asked. As she knew it would earlier, it wouldn't be hard to ignore Liam. She tried doing that on a regular basis and by the time the trio made it to Constance, he was already gone from his perch. It didn't help that girls were quick to inform them of who he had been there with, but the point was that Lani had made it her principal move of the day to avoid the bastard. It was less because of Sydney's order and more for Liam's own benefit if he didn't want his so-called pretty face to get bruised. Lani could do the bruising; bruising was easy. Anissa had been another situation altogether, and that was because this time around, much like last year, their schedules had been pretty much the same. She only had three classes with Sydney, one of those being the only one she had with Adeline, and then everything else consisted of Anissa and a few other good friends. She had been able to chalk her mood up, earlier, to just not wanting to be bothered for the day and a continued jet-lag, which wasn't a hard thing to believe. The flight back from Spain had been exhausting and Lani had been nothing, if not on the move since she landed. So, when Sydney texts them back with her impatience (and attitude for the day) on full display, Lani was quickly ready to add her to the list of people she wanted to strangle for the day.

"Your friend," she told Adeline as they began their brisk walk to the familiar lunch spot that both Constance and St. Jude's students went to if they didn't have a driver bring their lunch. Or didn't just go home since that was actually an option. Lani liked going home some days to get fried plantains from her kui fefine, but that wasn't an option today. Lani pointed directly at Adeline. "As of right now, she is your friend and your friend is gonna catch these hands if she rushes me more time before I have food in my stomach. I mean it, I will hilifaki that child, and not in the good way." (Lay hands on). Lani had never actually done a thing to Sydney before other than throw a pillow at her face during a sleepover and Adeline had heard her toss way too many idle threats Syd's way to actually take them seriously, but still. As much as she understood her friend's plight, the way Sydney was going about it - snapping at them - wasn't helping. It made Lani snappy, which was why she turned back to Adeline a second later to demand, "And what the hell were you doing that took you so long anyway? You're usually the first one out of class."


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Mood: Indifferent ☸ Outfit ☸ Location: St. Jude's School for Boys



"Yooooo, Hunter," Liam called from the double door entrance of St. Jude's main building. Of course, he wasn't surprised that before he could get anywhere, Coach had stopped him in the middle of the hall. Liam had debated just walking as if he hadn't heard the older man; it would be easy. All Liam would have had to do was grab the nearest classmate by the shoulder, continue to talk to them without warning since most turned their faces towards the person - even in their confusion - that was speaking to decipher who they were and why they were speaking to them, and then head towards the exit. However, that action would serve to make practice time a lecture time and then a lesson time, and it was bad enough that Liam was going to have to sprint laps just to get the coach off his back. So, like the good little boy Liam could be because he was nothing if not indulgent to those who at least did something for him, Liam endured the tiny lecture about sportsmanship, team togetherness and fairness. It all went over his head, but with a promising smile and nod to Coach, he was on his way, laughing with a few guys from the team once he was far enough away to go on about his day. He really didn't care about a thing Coach said other than when he acknowledged that Liam was "one of the best players on the time. Liam had already surmised in his head that he was the best and the coach just didn't want to be caught in the middle of the hallway admitting that lest some poor, emotional sucker got in his feelings over Liam being praised. It wasn't Liam's fault that he was great and others were...well, just not.

"Sorry about that, man," he exclaimed, clapped a friendly hand on Hunter's soldier before starting to jog down the steps lightly. "Coach stopped me to give me the infamous "there's no I in team speech" since I missed boot camp. Not like it's the first time a captain's missed practice, but whatever." Liam shrugged to further exemplify his overall nonchalance towards anything that this random authority figure in his life had to say, grinning a bit at the prospects of eating food since his stomach had been throwing too much of a bitch fit in his last class for Liam to not know that he was hungry, but also because he was in the presence of someone he genuinely thought of as a friend. Sentimental or not, Liam may have liked to have it in his head that he didn't need emotional connections, but it was nice to hang out with people he genuinely liked for a change. Plus, Hunter was cool people and one of the most fun he hung out with. "Leave it to you to try to throw a bomb ass party just before Syd's. What, you competing with the queen now, bro?"

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Lani Amasio-Ellison Character Portrait: Jamie Parata Character Portrait: Adeline Arnault Character Portrait: Ness Oberlin Character Portrait: Sydney Persson Character Portrait: Nova Blanchett
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Ness, in her typical vein of dreaminess, for the most part just floats through the first half of the school day without much of anything interesting happening. Her mind is occupied with plans for a two floor set riddled with knick knacks to make it feel homey, a white porch front and driveway stage right. She's already sketching out plans on every syllabus handed to her, a funny little smile pulling at the left corner of her mouth. It's as though she has a little hook that always latches on when she's imagining something wonderful that she has the chance to bring to fruition. Much like Nova, on the other side of the stage, she sees this as something which can give her yet another edge in getting into the technical theatre program of her dreams. Not that a famous family hurts her chances, of course. She hardly registers the response received from Nova about playing the part of Violet until after the bell has rung, bringing her out of her little dream land of set design and costuming. The backstage of a theatre is perhaps the ideal place for someone so fond of dreaming things up.

She slides all of her papers into that terrible mess which is her backpack (already frightening on the first day of school), save for one which she folds into a paper airplane and tosses out the second story window. It flies quickly at first, eventually floating slowly down until it is caught in a bush in the courtyard below.

To: Nova
I can't picture anyone else in the department. Either Violet or Barbara, for sure. I've already started sketches for a set. Are you going to 3G with drama gals? I'm gonna grab Jamie and head over!

To: Lani
Going to 3G. You there?

Ness loves the way everyone goes to eat at Three Guys without fail. It creates this loud, bustling atmosphere that she has always adored- the core of any city. Of course, this crowd is a bit more posh than the one found bustling about on the subway running beneath them. Ness meets with Jamie at the courtyard and the pair walk over together.

"I'm eating with Nova I think- sit with Lani, please,"
the moment they are within a few feet of the restaurant, Ness springs this on Jamie. She knows he's avoiding her, and is fairly certain he's in love with her. She just has no idea why he'd do anything but act on it- she's fond of watching people make each other happy, and is certain Jamie and Lani would do that excellently. Jamie looks at her like a man who has just been betrayed, eyes wide and frown half-surprised. He hadn't even responded to Lani's text asking where they were. He could see her at Three Guys, of course she'd be there with Sydney and Adeline and the rest of her other friends, but he figured he'd be able to sit off with Ness or something. The fact that she'd suggest otherwise throws him off guard a bit.

"C'mon, Ness. I feel like we haven't seen each other- let's just eat together?" he offers weakly, as she has already guided him into the crowded restaurant. Ness is simply not having it.

"Please. We live next to each other, we've seen plenty of each other. Lani misses you- and you miss her you big lump," Ness's plan fails in that she and Jamie arrive just a bit before Sydney, and thus before Adeline and Lani. She skips over to Nova's table and takes a seat with them- Jenny and Cole are Ness's friends as well. Everyone knows everyone in the theatre department, and all the more bearable people tend to clump together somehow.

Jamie makes a move to sit with them, but Ness stops him.

"Hey now, Billy Buddy. Lani's had to wait the whole summer to see you, right? You can sit when you've at least said a proper hello," she decides this as she sees the trio standing just in front of the restaurant through the glass. Seeing Sydney, she realizes Jamie may not be as welcome at that table. And seeing Adeline- well there are a different sort of mess of feelings when Ness sees that girl. A sudden unleashing of butterflies in her stomach, this clenching nervousness of a cliffhanger left out for too long. Jamie doesn't miss a thing.

"And you don't have someone to talk to, Ness? Is it alright if I pull up a chair?" this one is directed at Nova and the other theatre kids at the table. Ness sighs, defeated.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Lani Amasio-Ellison Character Portrait: Jamie Parata Character Portrait: Adeline Arnault Character Portrait: Ness Oberlin Character Portrait: Sydney Persson Character Portrait: Liam Koch Character Portrait: Hunter Devlin
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Mood: Hungry ღ Outfit ღ Location: En Route to Three Guys



Both of Lani's eyebrows rose at Sydney's harsh statement to Adeline and while Lani did not say a word, she did shift on her feet so that she was still standing closer to Adeline as opposed to Sydney, brushing shoulders with the brunette as a sign of solidarity. On most days, Lani defended Adeline verbally and she had half the mind to do so. However, she also knew that today wasn't just any other day. Again, and it seemed she had to consistently remind herself of this for the sake of not losing her own patience, Sydney was hurting. Or at least, Lani believed that she was. Her friend could be cold and as primitive or unintelligent the word was, Sydney was also a savage. Lani had always been sure that if she looked the word up, considering the fact that she had not touched an actual dictionary in years thanks to the technological advancement of the modern age, a sketch of Sydney Persson's face would be right there beside the word. So, this display of casual frigidity and hostile indifference? Not particularly new. That revelation did not make Sydney's attitude any less grating.

Luckily, as a temporary distraction, Cassidy had appeared with Avan right on her tail. Lani wasn't much of a judgemental person, or at least, she tried not to be. Which is why she chose not to vocalize her displeasure with Cassidy's character change as the years have gone by. They've clashed, and that honestly should not turn her on as much as it does, but she knew she barely had room to honestly and truly judge anyone. Avan was an entirely different story as Lani didn't have a past with him nor had any other reason than his chosen occupation to actually dislike him. She just did. If you chose to feed someone's addiction to drugs simply to put money in your pocket, even when everyone around you buzzed with the whispered knowledge of said addiction, Lani couldn't respect you. And if you could honestly call yourself an entrepreneur when most of your transactions were probably enough to get your ass sent to detention or even juvie, then Lani damn sure didn't respect you. Luckily, he had nothing to say with Cassidy having spoken enough for the both of them, so Lani didn't have to have any voice in her head telling her that her self-righteousness was uncalled for. Cassidy didn't acknowledge her and Lani made it a priority to not look at her or say a word, though the other brunette's obvious jabs at Adeline did make her edge closer to the point that she had subtly shifted so that she was only slightly in front of Adeline, arms folded over her chest, by the time Cassidy admitted to not sitting with them. Not that she was, in the first place. Especially not with Sydney's mood. Then she and her buddy were gone, and the girls were alone once more.

"Just share with me," she told Adeline conspiratorially as they headed inside after Sydney, pretending to whisper even though she was loud enough for the blonde to hear her. "I could honestly eat for the both of us at this point." Sydney had made it a point to not be as frigid by the time they made it to their usual table, which made Lani's face soften just enough. "Monday. We've gotta start planning for the charity event for this semester and the Winter Gala so we can get the location that I want. Also, we're in charge of senior class trip, so there's planning for that and getting a survey out to the rest of you so we can narrow down our locations before the spring semester." Lani had made it a point to schedule their first meeting next week. She wasn't in the mood to sit after school to discuss a thing with anyone if it didn't include getting their nails done or going for a swim. She also knew that everyone else wasn't either, so it worked in everyone's favor. A bit more relaxed now that they were seated and food was going to be a sure thing, Lani glanced around before her eyes fell on Ness and Jamie at a table away. Frowning slightly, Lani pulled out her phone, glanced at Jamie again, before texting him.

To: Ness
Here w/ da girls.

To: Jamie
U can't read texts now lol?


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Mood: Indifferent ☸ Outfit ☸ Location: St. Jude's School for Boys



Liam couldn't help but laugh at Hunter's answer about not being suicidal as it pertained to competing with Sydney Persson. Even if you acknowledged the fact taht Hunter did, in fact, host the best parties on the Upper East Side, you wouldn't be foolish enough to say that in front of Sydney or any of Sydney's followers really. That was literally you on the cusp of social suicide and just asking for her to deliver you that one final blow. Even Liam didn't even think to do that, and he had his impulsive moments. Then again, his intelligence was probably being questioned by the majority of the student population at both St. Jude's and Constance Billiard for ditching their queen. The truth of the matter was that he didn't owe not a single one of them an actual answer. Not really, anyway. Maybe Sydney, but that was just being optimistic that Liam would actually want to discuss his reasoning with her. Or be near her, to be honest. At least, for right now. Again, he wasn't stupid. "Nah, man, I'm good. First boys' soccer match is in two weeks, I've gotta pretend to catch up on conditioning and I'm staying away from some stuff for awhile. As long as you got a good brew, though. I'm down for that."

Knowing Liam, he probably wouldn't go tomorrow night without at least getting his hands on a little marijuana. He couldn't deny that it really chilled him out and along with the mood stabilizers he had gotten from Avan before, he had less outbursts, less total loss of control. It was a heady feeling, going on as if nothing could stop you. It was how Liam's year had gone so damn great and part of the reason why he had been so ready to get with Sydney, if he were being honest. He didn't feel weak. By the end of last semester, however, David had given one of his infamous speeches lambasting the idea that so many people had mental disorders. He questioned the validity of Upper East Side children having actual mental disorders as opposed to just simply being victims of bad parenting and before Liam had known it, he was flushing his mood stabilizers down the toilet. He still contacted Avan for marijuana since the Upper East Side's infamous Hookup seemed to find some of the best strains of the stuff, but the more expensive and honestly more needed drug that his former therapist would have rather had him gotten years ago? Liam was going to ween himself off of it and fast. That was part of his reasoning for getting Anissa to California. His worst episodes were on the Upper East Side and Avan was here. Too much temptation for one guy to handle.

It took Liam a bit longer than he would have liked to answer Hunter when he started questioning him about Sydney and Anissa. As he still was telling himself, Liam didn't feel like he owed anyone, not even his best friend, an explanation. But he also understood that not providing some kind of Liam-like answer wasn't going fly either, so he smirked. "What can I say? The grass isn't always greener and there's an honest to God reason why they call her Elsa with a tan." He stated with a shrug, knowing damn well that mostly anyone else who uttered such a statement to absolutely anyone else worth mentioning would probably be tumbling down the ladder so fast, it wouldn't even be funny. But it wouldn't be Liam without cockily upholding an unfathomably sure comfort in the thought that he was untouchable. Then his smirk transformed into a grin as he stared at Hunter knowing and added, "'Sides, perfect opening for you, right? Loses me as a catch and you swoop in like Captain-Save-A-Hoe. Everything works out for everybody." It wouldn't work out and Liam couldn't even promise himself that he would be necessarily happy with Sydney being with anyone who wasn't him, but he wasn't going to be the one to say that.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Jamie Parata Character Portrait: Ness Oberlin Character Portrait: Nova Blanchett
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|| OUTFIT ||



Pausing mid sentence when she hears her phone beep with an incoming text, Nova pulls it out of her handbag and glances at a message from Ness. Happy to get a response from the girl, Nova can't help but enjoy the slight ego stroke as Ness tells her she couldn't picture anyone else playing Violet. That's exactly how she thought and was glad to see she wasn't the only one.

Then spotting Ness come into Three Guys, Nova shoots her a wide smile and puts off replying to her text as she takes a seat in front of her, glad to have another theatre friend to perform her speech to. Cocking her eyebrow slightly at Jamie, someone who wouldn't typically choose to sit with Nova and her friends, she nods at him so he knows it's fine to sit. The two had hardly spoken, and besides sharing a few of their classes, didn't really see each other much. Of course she knew who he was, and Nova reckoned Jamie knew her too - most likely through Ness, their mutual friend. Nova figured it'd be interested to get to know an unfamiliar face, and see what she could get from him, if anything.

Taking a sip of her milkshake while Jenny and Cole greet the new arrivals to their table, Nova joins in "Ness! Am I glad to see you," She beams, toying with her salad, "You gotta tell me your plans for the staging, and we should definitely read lines together when I get the part of Violet." Nova deliberately chooses to say when instead of if. Then turning to Jamie, Nova leans her head in her right and and gives him a small smile, "Hey, I don't suppose you're going to audition for the school play, huh Jamie?" She kids, while Nova may not know the guy well, everyone knew how soft spoken and reserved he was, "Or am I wrong? Are you secretly harbouring some amazing acting skills we have yet to see?" Nova only means this as a joke, although some sensitive people could take it to heart Nova only teased him, and perhaps pushed slightly, trying to figure out where they boundaries lie with him.

Waiting for a response, Nova takes a bite of her salad, glancing around the quickly filling Three Guys and over to neighbouring tables, noticing Sydney, Adeline and Lani on one and Cassidy sitting with Avan on another, Nova noticed Cassidy riling up the popular threesome and stifled a giggle, while she pretended to be vaguely friends with the girls, she couldn't help but enjoy Cassidy's careless attitude - if nothing else it sure was entertaining.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Lani Amasio-Ellison Character Portrait: Jamie Parata Character Portrait: Adeline Arnault Character Portrait: Ness Oberlin Character Portrait: Nova Blanchett
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Jamie manages to sit relatively still, despite the desire to fidget about with some degree of antsiness. He feels somewhat awkward sitting with Ness and her friends, especially when he doesn't really know any of them (of course he knows about them in that way he always manages to). So they chat about theatre, primarily, and he listens silently. At least now he knows what the play is going to be- Jamie will occasionally pop by to help build things with Ness, but usually doesn't interact with any actors, like those sitting before him. He glances around the restaurant, making his usual notes of who is here, who is sitting together, who is not. It's become second nature to look for these things, though he can't really pinpoint when that became the case. It's as though he's checking up on people, including those who don't know him beyond a tearful drunk confession at a party.

And then he spots Lani and her friends sitting down, and immediately turns back into his seat to return to the conversation at hand. Truth be told, he's never really liked Sydney, though she is Lani's best friend discounting him. Well, perhaps including him, nowadays. She has a way of making people feel on edge. It's not that he dislikes her, or wouldn't be able to hold a conversation with her. She just makes Lani feel even further away. They grew up together, and yet upon coming to New York she skyrocketed to the top and he remained middle-tier. It does little for his confidence in matters regarding her, though he's always known she's far above him.

"Of course! I want a very homie sort of set- half house half wraparound porch. You'll love it, trust me. And no need for any major stage crew besides clearing props, which'll be good. The house has to be wonderful because truth be told the costumes may be a bit dull,"
Ness is speaking, tearing Jamie away from his semi-dazed state. He registers that he is being addressed by Nova. He glances down at his phone briefly to see a text from Lani, and then fixes his focus back onto Nova.

Jamie smiles in response, a little sharp exhale taking the place of a snort. "Yeah, you got me- Behind this boyish exterior is a broadway diva waiting to break loose. No, I'll leave the spotlight to the professionals- I'd probably have a heart attack up there."

Ness had taken this opportunity to see Lani's text to her as well, and twists in her chair to wave at Lani before giving Jamie a light nudge so that he has no choice but to turn and do the same, though his is a slower, more ashamed wave. He finally responds to her text.

To: Lani
Yeah, sorry. I've just been kinda distracted lately.

It's a half-assed excuse but not technically untrue. He's certain that he'll be called out on it though, knowing Lani. And despite what Sydney or Adeline or that gang may think, Jamie is certain that if there is one thing he knows, it's Lani. Sometimes the known can be just as nerve-wracking as the unknown. He glances over at Ness, who seems strangely fixated by something over at Lani's table. He traces her line of sight to one Adeline Arnault, and raises an eyebrow. He won't press it until later, of course. He knows the vaguest of details of what's up there, of course, but is curious for more.

The waiter comes round with Ness and Jamie's food, which they take gratefully. The waiters at Three Guys tend to like Ness in particular because she is known for giving way too much money as a tip- she tends to forget the value of money at times, and while she spends nothing on things like jewelry, will drop plenty on a tip or an interesting new meal or concert ticket.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Lani Amasio-Ellison Character Portrait: Jamie Parata Character Portrait: Adeline Arnault Character Portrait: Ness Oberlin Character Portrait: Sydney Persson Character Portrait: Liam Koch Character Portrait: Hunter Devlin Character Portrait: Nova Blanchett
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Outfit || Shoes
Adeline was so lucky that Lani jumped in with her own complaint, which seemed to come with its own serving of genuine annoyance, but whether it was intended to do so or not, also told Sydney that she needed to simmer down. Lani was there, and just because Adeline was getting on every last one of her nerves (even though really, the girl was doing nothing abnormal and Sydney was just having a bad day...), she couldn't ruin their lunch. The sharpness that accompanied Lani's words to their waitress strangely forced Sydney to relax a bit too, because someone else being edgy made her feel more comfortable, through the thought process that revolved around "at least I'm not the only bitch at the table". It was probably that thought process that actually made she and Lani's friendship work. Rather than being blatantly competitive with each other, the two seemed to have formed a bit of an unspoken alliance around both being very strong presences in the school, and just having that edge to their personalities in general. Unlike Adeline, Lani seemed to be a bit more understanding of where Sydney came from with the attitude and harshness, when the time called for it. Maybe that couldn't always be applied to situations like the one that they were in in the present, when Addy, a common friend, was the victim of the anger, but in other situations where Sydney was lashing out at other peers, or Lani was plotting to destroy someone, the girls seemed to think on a similar wavelength. Maybe it was a bit sick that it brought Sydney comfort that Lani was also dishing out an attitude to someone else, who probably didn't deserve it, but it did, and she let Adeline's very unnecessary comment about Liam slide, with only a very long glare being sent her way.

"Yeah, I'm going to get the mango salad, and also just an order of mozzarella sticks, and as she said, we don't have all day here, so would you make sure to expedite our order to the front of the list?" It was more of an order than a demand, and though it might have seemed strange, considering that Sydney knew that the entire world did not revolve around her, she didn't doubt that it could be done, because it had been done before. While Sydney's social power was mainly focused over the youth of Manhattan, she knew that there was a way to gain power in the "real world" too, and that power came in the form of money. Money talked, and as the girls' experience over the last few years proved, it only took a couple of nicely endowed tips to their usual waiters and waitresses to make their regular lunch spots very easy and quick places to eat at. She didn't even look at Adeline, before glancing down at the menu, and then back at the waitress. "Actually, swap out the mozzarella sticks for the Appetizer Sampler plate. She'll have that." The order of mozzarella sticks had originally been for Sydney, since with how today was going, she figured that she deserved a little bit of junk food to pick at with her salad, just to give her a little bit of joy today. However, with what Cassidy had said minutes ago still irking Sydney, in the back of her mind, coupled with the low blow that Addy had just shot her way, Sydney decided that she could just take the mozzarella sticks off of this combo tray of mozzarella sticks, buffalo wings and chicken wings, that she had ordered for Addy, and force the girl to eat the rest of the food. Sydney didn't even want to humor Cassidy's claim that Adeline was addicted to cocaine and had been in rehab for that, but wasn't actually better, hence the suppressed appetite that was common in cocaine users, but she was also just feeling petty towards Adeline today.

"I'm not saying that we can't go Friday," Sydney said, once the waitress was gone. She had caught Liam and Hunter entering out of the corner of her eye, but refused to look at them as they came in. They weren't important...or at least, Liam wasn't. Repeating that in her head definitely played into her deciding that he shouldn't stop her from socializing at a party she knew he would be at. "I'm sure that Hunter would appreciate us coming, and then you guys can sleep over my house, and we'll do some shopping on Saturday morning and then take the seaplane out to the Hamptons midday, so you can help me prep for the party on Sunday." Even if she hadn't been distracted by the people waving at Lani from a few tables away, Sydney wouldn't have considered that her friends might have had other plans for Saturday. As her best friends, it seemed like a requirement that they would clear their schedules if she needed them, but at least in her defense, she would do the same for them. As she allowed her eyes to fall upon the two people who had been acknowledging Lani, a small smile formed on her lips. It was Jamie and Ness. Sydney wasn't particularly close with either of them, but she didn't have any major problems with them either. Ness was too much of a goody two shoes for her, but another one of Cassidy's probably-completely-made-up comments had made her seem a tad more interesting today. Additionally, Jamie wasn't someone who would ever really catch Sydney's attention, but she would have been a fool not to note that he seemed to have a lot of friendly connections around school, with possibly the most major one being with Lani. And simply because Lani liked them, Sydney would be friendly... and again, she was feeling petty and in the mood to make people other than herself feel uncomfortable, because she had experienced enough feelings in the past few days alone to last her a lifetime. "Why don't you tell your friends to eat with us? We can make space for them. I feel like you've never given me a chance to get to know them, and I can only imagine that they're more alluring than they seem on the surface level that I know them on, if you like them. Especially since we heard that Adeline's given her own stamp of approval on Ness' character. Wasn't that what Cassidy was saying earlier?"

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Lani Amasio-Ellison Character Portrait: Jamie Parata Character Portrait: Adeline Arnault Character Portrait: Ness Oberlin Character Portrait: Sydney Persson Character Portrait: Cassidy Knox Character Portrait: Liam Koch Character Portrait: Avan Harrison Character Portrait: Nova Blanchett
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Mood: Annoyed ღ Outfit ღ Location: Three Guys Restaurant



Lani smiled, just a little, when Sydney directed her ire towards their waitress. The woman appeared as under attack as she was and Lani felt a minuscule sense of guilt for starting it, but it wasn't enough to say a word to Sydney. Though, she did tilt her her head just-so when Sydney ordered for Adeline. It wasn't a new concept; she had done it once or twice before. It usually was because Sydney knew what Addy would like better and could just take over like that. So, the surprise wasn't in that Sydney had ordered, but what she ordered. No matter how many times the girls had pigged out on junk food and such, Adeline had always been the one to gravitate towards the more healthier options. Always. This...Sydney ordering items she knew Addy wouldn't partake in unless she was too drunk and needed to eat something to cure the hangover before it began seemed cruel.. Which, again, wasn't a surprise when it came to the things Sydney could do, but it didn't make the situation settle nicely in Lani's stomach. And especially because it was because of something Cassidy said. Lani may have thought the girl was above gorgeous, but it didn't negate the protectiveness that arose at the girl acting like she knew something about Lani's friend that Lani didn't know. Or that even Sydney didn't know.

What Adeline said next was the thing that tried a nerve Lani hadn't been prepared to have messed with for the day. She understood that Adeline had a lot of...naive sensibilities. In the most delicate manner of speaking, and it had to be delicate because Lani was a good friend who rarely snapped at Adeline, the girl was sheltered. She was an Arnault; it wasn't too much of a surprise. At the same time, while there was a part of her slightly miffed that Adeline painted Ness as some kind of deviant simply by her non-delicate phrasing, the fact that it had to be a weird lesbian thing instead of a hook-up that really made her turn sharply to the brunette. Lani was a lot more open and honest, comfortable, with her sexuality now than she had been about two years ago. It had been to the girls she was sitting with that she had even made the distinction first, even before Jamie. And while Adeline always had the propensity towards insensitivity - and Lani was pointedly ignoring the feeling she actually had about the idea of Cassidy and Ness together for reasons that needed not be addressed - it didn't stop Lani from feeling attacked. She was a second away from snapping at Adeline when Sydney popped in with her suggestion and Lani sat back in their booth, taking a breath that was shakier than she needed.

"I'll be back," she stated crisply and rose without waiting for anyone to say another word, pointedly ignoring Katherine's warning about probably having to include Nova. She didn't have to include anyone in anything if she didn't want to. Out of the three of them, Lani didn't really like Nova and she didn't pretend to do so. There was nothing but cordial indifference since the girl had done nothing more than rub her the wrong way. Which was why Lani didn't see the point of really acknowledging her as anything other than another one of their classmates, not one of their supposed friends or even near their clique. But of course, that was the superficial way of the Upper East Side and so the most she did was either nod in the girl's direction or answer when spoken to. Lani walked in the direction of Jamie's table, noting Hunter and Liam as they entered the building. "What's up, Ellison?" The bastard decided to go with and Lani didn't falter in her steps, just throwing a "Hey, Hunter!" over her shoulder lest she actually stop and present Liam the nice right hook she was storing. It wasn't long before Lani was standing before Nova's table and whatever conversation that lay on Jenny's lips died at the sight of her. Lani knew what she looked like - barely contained, ominous energy. So, she smiled - briefly - at the theater kids, offered a softer look towards Ness, and finally turned her gaze to Jamie. "Now that you're not so distracted, come sit with me. I'm sure Ness could do with some time with her peeps before class, isn't that right?"


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Mood: Amused ☸ Outfit ☸ Location: Three Guys Restaurant



"It is what it is," Liam declared after a beat, still relaxed despite Hunter's warning. He had already thought about the prospects of Sydney's possible retribution, of her friends' and followers' wrath. And he would handle them as they came. If it turned too extreme or at least too out of his control, then he would act accordingly. But he wasn't about to spend his senior year huddled in a corner like Sydney Persson's little bitch. She had enough of those chasing after her during the school day, hoping for a second to gain a spot of approval or gratifying acknowledgement from her. Liam wasn't one of them - never had been and never will be. If she wanted to do something, she was going to do so. He could deal with her being upset. He could deal with her even deciding not to speak with him. He wasn't afraid of her. Sure, the wrath of Constance's queen bee wasn't something to take lightly, but it also wasn't the end of the world, particularly for him. That might have been more of his egoism speaking as opposed to the logical side of his mind, but at the moment, Liam was more interested in getting something to eat and enjoying his day. Which he had been - at Sydney's expense.

With that said, Liam continued on their path without responding to Hunter's request for him to behave. It wasn't like he expected everything to be all hunky dory now that she obviously knew he cheated and left her for someone else, but for one, he didn't behave even for his family. How the hell he was supposed to do so for Hunter, of all people? Two, he was here for food wasn't he? Liam didn't play when it came to food. He just played when they were in the waiting process, which they were about to be once they were seated. As he and Hunter headed towards a table near the middle of the restaurant, Liam spotted Lani about to cross their path and he smirked. He couldn't help it. While others admired her for her leadership skills, which were phenomenal if he was showing his rare foray into actual honesty, Liam loved fucking with her. There was a thrill in messing with Lani that there wasn't with other people, something rankling just below the surface of the aloof Madam President that Liam just wanted to graze. To tempt to full display. Of course, she never officially rose to the bait, but he could tell that, because of the current situation, she would be closer this year than before. Naturally, in his head, a part of the tension between them was the fact that she was undoubtedly as attracted to him as she disliked him, and he was always down for a fight with a girl like that - whether they happened to make it to a bedroom or the nearest closet. That just obviously wasn't happening now.

"You know, she wants me right?" He decided to joke to Hunter offhandedly. "Only a matter of time now, really. I mean, unless you're interested, man. Ellison's hot ass and since Syd isn't the one for you, you've gotta be looking elsewhere, right? Senior year and all." Liam spotted a two-seater right beside Avan and Cassidy, and while he had made it his mission to avoid Avan a bit this year, Liam wasn't above being at least slightly cordial. "Knox," he acknowledged before nodding to Avan. Wassup, Harrison? How was the summer?"

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Character Portrait: Lani Amasio-Ellison Character Portrait: Jamie Parata Character Portrait: Ness Oberlin Character Portrait: Nova Blanchett
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Nova nods at Ness' ideas, I wide smile on her face, "Ness that sounds amazing!" She beams, "I honestly can't wait." Hearing Jamie finally pipe up, Nova couldn't help but laugh at his comment, "Aw, you know you had me convinced for a minute there." She kids, slightly more intrigued by the usually reserved guy who she had barely spoken to before. He was much more interesting that she had given him credit for and Nova began to see why Ness was so tight with him. Their other theatre buddies began excitedly chattering more about the play, and for a while Nova joined in. That was until she noticed Sydney's table peering over at them. Cocking her right eyebrow slightly, Nova wonders what they could possibly want. Of course, she know that Lani was close with both Ness and Jamie - There's no way she couldn't have missed seeing a 'popular' girl hanging out with an innocent angel and a shy guy, oh how crazy of her, how generous to dip out of her elitist pool and befriend them.

Watching as Lani strolled over past their table toward Hunter, the party host himself, Nova noticed her glances over at Ness and Jamie and almost laughed. Was she that jealous that they had other friends? Could they not sit with anyone but her - must she always be surrounded by an adoring audience? Of course, Nova had no real problem with the girl, in fact, she was probably a sweetheart and had never given the girl a reason to dislike her, other than making her feel very obviously that Lani disliked her. And while Nova could never be one to call other person fake, seeing as she practically switched personality every five minutes, she couldn't help but get that vibe from Lani. She seemed almost perfect and Nova knew for a fact that wasn't at all possible. Nobody is perfect, no matter now much Nova may wish she could be.

As Lani then appeared in front of Nova, standing at the foot of her table, the genuine smile that had once been on Nova's lips during her conversation with her friends quickly faded and was replaced by a curious smirk. Jenny, noticing Lani, quickly stopped her excitable talk as she was more than confused by the sight of her. In fact, almost all three theatre friends questioned why Lani would be there, albeit silently but they still wondered. Hearing her comment to Jamie, Nova pouts. "Stealing him so soon?" She asks, feigning sadness, "That sucks, and just as I was getting to know our new friend too!" Nova then looks over at Jamie with warm eyes, she wanted him to know that he didn't have to go with Lani and by the look on his face earlier when he glanced at the girl, Nova figured he maybe didn't want to.

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Character Portrait: Lani Amasio-Ellison Character Portrait: Jamie Parata Character Portrait: Ness Oberlin Character Portrait: Nova Blanchett
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xxxxNess is positively glowing when she speaks about her plans for the set, going into little details like a little electric fireplace or a tv that will play reruns of shows from that era whenever it's turned on. There is a reason that she wants to major in set and costume design- the young woman has no happier place than discussing the things she wants to create and the plans she is drawing up. Perhaps the sweetest expression to ever pass across her features is that when she is sketching out plans for a set on which she is giving free reign. No nit picky little details to remember for the director, no specific paint colors that have to be used up. Fall shows are her favorite because they are a chance to start anew, to some extent. She is too absorbed to notice the looks being thrown towards their table from the far more intimidating one where Lani sits, and certainly is oblivious to the way that the people she is sitting with throw occasional looks back at the table in return. Some say ignorance is bliss- but in fact, her bliss creates an ignorance to her surroundings- one of Ness's shortcomings.

xxxxSo she sits happily, oblivious to the way Adeline is tossing her under the fresh wheels of her friends' expensive cars. Oblivious to the way that Jamie is continuing to fidget under the looks from the table- looks he, unlike Ness, does not miss in the least. Jamie smiles back at Nova's comment and allows Jenny and Ness to take over the conversation discussing the play and any theatre that they were involved with over the summer. He's more than happy to sit back and allow others to have their conversations without him playing any role in them whatsoever. And in listening to it, and seeing how happy Ness, practically a sister to him, is speaking about her craft, he can almost pretend he doesn't see Lani walking over towards their table.

xxxxGod, she's beautiful. She's been dazzling since they were children growing up on the beach. Doing something as mundane as walking through a restaurant she stands as a cut above the rest. As far as he's concerned, the worshiped Sydney Persson herself can hardly compare. But of course, he is a bit biased. As soon as she's close enough to notice his staring he busies himself with his drink, hating himself for acting like a complete fucking idiot around someone whom he has known for almost literally his entire life. Sure, he isn't as suave as Liam Koch or one of those other types, but he definitely shouldn't be dodging about like a criminal hiding from the cops every time he sees her.

xxxxOr perhaps he should be. For one thing, falling for your cousin who doesn't realize she's your cousin is just strange. For another, thinking that he might ever be even a fraction of the way to being on her level is absolute insanity- and is why Jamie, with is already shit self esteem, would never think such a thing. He was happy just being her friend until eventually his stupid angsty self could not even allow that one good thing to remain the case.

xxxxHe feels a sudden nudge at his side from under the table. Ness is looking at him with those doe-eyes that seem to overlook any and every evil in the world, looking half confused half encouraging. Somewhat dazed from his own little pity party, Jamie had only half processed that of course Lani had made her way to the table. She'd invited him to sit with her, as though that would free him from sitting through drama geek conversations. As though this hadn't been intended as a sanctuary from his own self-loathing and the person who, honestly, only worsens the problem with her halo and seeming ability to do everything perfectly.

xxxx"Yeah, Jamie- you haven't seen Lani all summer practically. I'll see you after school for ice cream anyway, right? Lani, you too? C'mon billy buddy- I think the waiters deliver their food faster anyway," stupid, idealistic Ness thinks she's helping Jamie. She's been trying to get him to talk to Lani again for most of the summer, as soon as she realized he'd been avoiding her. And now Jamie's stuck. Perhaps she is helping him, forcing him to actually cope rather than just sulk and fake a smile about his problems. Nova looks at him in an offer of help, but it's too late now. Ness smiles at him in that way of hers which makes it impossible to blame her for anything at all- pure good intentions and light. His best friend is a Disney Princess and it can sometimes be a real pain.

xxxxJamie looks up at Lani and manages a half smile, although he feels the need to squint at her. Lack of exposure makes her all the more dazzling to look at. His ears are bright red but he's praying the lighting in the restaurant will conceal this.

xxxx"Uh, yeah, sure. Of course,"
he gets up, plate in one hand and glass in the other "See ya later, Ness. Nova, Jenny, it was nice talking. See you in Bio, Cole."

xxxxHe turns to Lani, waiting for her to lead the way. It's been this way since childhood- Jamie being pulled along by Lani and her vivacious personality. He's been along for the ride his entire life it seems, even if he hasn't always realized it.

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Character Portrait: Lani Amasio-Ellison Character Portrait: Jamie Parata Character Portrait: Ness Oberlin Character Portrait: Nova Blanchett
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Mood: Territorial ღ Outfit ღ Location: Three Guys Restaurant



Lani hated the fact that Jamie would even think to hesitate before acquiescing to her. She didn't believe that she made it a habit of monopolizing all of his time. Lani liked to believe that when they arrived in the Upper East Side, that she had been the one to be more adamant about them both finding their own niches within this new society. She wasn't exactly all for not having Jamie with her at all times as she hardly had a childhood memory that didn't consist of him on her right, but she had dealt. It never would have occurred to her that perhaps he was content with not being with her and she refused to allow the thought to sit in her mind for too long. She hated that Jamie had to look to Ness before even giving her an actual smile and the one she received was lackluster at that. She did her best to retain the blank expression she had arrived with, but Lani couldn't help but feel hurt that his gaze traveled to Ness and Nova before finally returning to Lani. But what she hated - abso-fucking-lutely hated - was that Nova gave him this look as if Lani was unwelcomed in his space. The very idea made her clench her jaw, even as Nova gave her a little smirk.

I could give a rat's ass if you found out what his favorite color is, she thought pettily, but did not vocalize it. He's mine. Lani rationalized that she was internally being ridiculous and that there was no reason to feel the need to stake her claim like linking her arm with Jamie's the second he was up on his feet, as if she could somehow tether him to her person before someone convinced him to stay. Which she did, and Lani felt faintly guilty for it. It wasn't enough to bear her conscience down or make her release him, but she knew she was being stupid. And Nova more than likely didn't mean anything as an insult, but with the unexplained distance between herself and Jamie - combined by the fact that he obviously wasn't too distracted if he was spending time with getting to know someone else - Lani just felt like...well, damn it, he was her friend. And she was allowed to want to spend some kind of time with him.

"Yeah, sure," she replied distractedly to Ness, breaking the glare she had felt forming on her face towards Nova so that she could softly acknowledge Ness once more. "We've gotta start scheduling movie nights this year too. I heard Beyond the Lights was actually a good one." Belatedly, Lani realized that she could have invited Ness - no, she should have. She loved the other girl and she was a mutual friend of Jamie and Lani's. And yet, despite having to go back to Sydney and Adeline, Lani wanted this to be a bit of her own time with the guy. Again, absolutely irrational and uncalled for, but it was what it was. Satisfied with her possession, Lani nodded to the table once more before tugging Jamie lightly, walking away. However, she didn't head immediately back to Sydney and Adeline. It was a slightly longer route around tables and would lead them towards the bathrooms just a bit before circling back to her girls, but she felt the need to have Jamie completely alone before forcing him to deal with girls he wasn't that familiar with. They stopped once they were by the door where servers came out with freshly prepared foods and while Lani's stomach was adamant that the next nice-smelling plate be hers, she pointedly ignored it to face Jamie with her arms folded over her chest. "You're getting to know new friends while I can't even get one phone call in Spain now?" She asked in a low tone, leaning over just a little so that only he could hear her. "Tell me I'm just being paranoid and I'll drop it, but...am I missing something here?"

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Character Portrait: Lani Amasio-Ellison Character Portrait: Jamie Parata Character Portrait: Adeline Arnault Character Portrait: Ness Oberlin Character Portrait: Nova Blanchett
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Watching as Jamie is dragged from his seat at the table and possessively bound to Lani, his arm linked firmly in hers, Nova half rolls her eyes before catching herself and stopping. Sure Lani's weird behaviour was definitely eye-roll inducing but Nova knew better than to make her reaction obvious. Instead the blonde turns her attention back to the table Lani had made a beeline for - there sat Sydney and Adeline who seemed to be wrapped up in a situation of their own. Nova wasn't surprised in the slightest though, it was a rare day when you didn't see Sydney snapping at someone. Pondering over what it could be they were arguing about now, perhaps Sydney was mad over Adeline's unusual disappearance over the summer break. But then again, just because she didn't know about it Nova was certain Sydney must know what happened, right? Bringing her focus back to the table and her friends in front of her, she decides to involve them in her questioning.

"Where'd you think Adeline disappeared to this summer?" Nova asks the table, her voice slightly more hushed than usual. While she was sure the two girls at the other table were far too busy with their tiff, she didn't want to become 'that girl'. The one known solely as the gossip, so she kept it on the lowdown. Jenny, always quick to pipe up with her own comment swiftly replies, "Didn't she say she was in California or something?" Cole nods before adding, "Yeah Nova, that's what I heard." Of course Nova had heard that too, but something about that didn't quite seem right. Nova had absolutely no reason to doubt the girl, but then again she liked to pride herself on being pretty good at seeing through lies (being an expert liar herself) and she got the strangest feeling that Adeline wasn't where she says she was. However, not one to tattle - unless it was to her benefit - Nova merely shrugs, keeping her thoughts to herself, "You're probably right." She says finally, dropping the subject. She wouldn't bring it up with the table again, but would be sure to keep an ear out incase any other gossip surrounding the whole Adeline situation came out, not that you should ever believe the whispers that transpire between Constance girls. Looking over to Ness, Nova found herself keen to hear the girls thoughts on the subject. She had no idea whether the two had ever even spoken before but figured everyone would know about the whole ordeal by now.

While she waited for Ness to comment, Nova allowed herself to take another glance around the almost packed 3 guys. Even more people had arrived, those of interest including Liam and Hunter. Nova couldn't say she was particularly close with either, but had engaged in a few conversations here and there. Their choice of seating, next to Avan and Cassidy's table, seemed curious to Nova but she figured Hunter was just trying to get a hook-up for his next party. Out of the pair Nova probably knew Hunter a little better, and usually got an invite to his parties (along with most of those 'known' in Constance and St Judes). He was familiar to her only as 'the party guy', which to Nova, wasn't necessarily a bad thing. Considering how much she enjoyed partying and getting up to mischief. Liam wasn't someone Nova knew well at all and really, he never seemed to interest her before today. When she heard the news about him breaking up with Sydney. She couldn't really see why he'd do such a thing, considering Sydney had pretty much the entire school body under her command - something Nova so longed for and was certainly jealous of - dating her meant Liam had almost as much power. And now? Well, he was really just another jock. Although Nova couldn't say she wasn't impressed that a jock could break up with the queen bee. He must have some serious guts.

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Character Portrait: Lani Amasio-Ellison Character Portrait: Jamie Parata Character Portrait: Ness Oberlin Character Portrait: Hunter Devlin Character Portrait: Nova Blanchett
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xxxxIn a possessive motion that Jamie can't recall having seen since they were kids, Lani loops her arm through his as she leads him off. To an outside viewer it may simply look like two friends walking arm in arm to navigate though the incredibly busy establishment, but Jamie knows much better. Lani has that miffed look on her face that tells him he's going to have to answer for the entirety of the summer in a few short moments. The fact that they are clearly taking the long way to get to the table where her friends, who he doubts will genuinely welcome him though they will of course put on smiles out of respect for Lani, are sitting. Even with the knowledge of the upcoming reprimanding he cannot formulate an acceptable reason for his absence, because it is twenty years to soon for him to tell Lani that he's been avoiding her because he's in love with her and doesn't want to risk royally fucking everything up. Not that spending two months avoiding her is the best way to keep everything just the way it always was, clearly. He feels like a child caught with a hand elbow deep in the cookie jar- if the cookies were cough syrup flavored and honestly too unpleasant to be worth risking being busted for in the first place.

xxxxAnd here it comes. Her arms cross and her mouth twists ever so slightly in that way that he's known all of his life. Jamie could write a thesis on Lani at this point- he knows every little expression, every change in tone. He knows her better than she knows him, without a doubt. Of course, he's always been looking more closely than she has. "Am I missing something here?"

xxxxJamie drops his eyes to the floor. He deserves the third degree right now, of course. That makes it not a shred less nerve-wracking for him. Being right next to the kitchen, boiling heat while it churns out meal after meal, hardly helps. He manages a sheepish smile and rubs the back of his neck, half ashamed half frustrated. He wants to be mad at Lani, angry that she won't let him branch out. Angry that she thinks she can pull him away at the drop of a dime and have that be okay. Angry that she feels the right to be so possessive over him, friend or not. But instead he just feels embarrassed. Plenty of guys would kill to have Lani Ellison lead them by the arm to a more secluded part of a restaurant- a more secluded part of anywhere. But at the moment, he just wants to hide from her eyes that dare him to try and feed her another bullshit excuse.

xxxx"I'm sorry. I don't know, I just thought I needed to branch out I guess. I don't know. You've always been there, but in a year that won't be the case- I guess I was having a hard time coming to terms with that, and I just kinda didn't deal with it well. Sorry, I suck," it comes out all as a flood, all technically true. Everything he says has flashed through his mind at some point or another. Knowing they can't always be attached at the hip, that she'll go to some Ivy League while he, if his father will come to terms with the fact that he doesn't want to go to Stanford, will go somewhere to study education or nursing. They just don't match up. They haven't since they were kids. The future separation may not be the reason, but without a doubt it's a reason.


xxxxIt doesn't even occur to Ness to be offended or hurt that she hadn't been invited over to eat with Lani and her power duo friends. For one thing, she had actually maintained in contact with Lani throughout the summer while Jamie pretended that every text from her didn't exist. Besides, Ness tends to have difficulty realizing when she's been slighted in any way unless it is painfully obvious. It goes with her tendency to believe the best of people, and makes her very difficult to anger when it comes to insults towards her own person. So she is happy to continue chatting with her theatre peeps. It's only when the subject of Adeline comes up that she feels a bit clammier.

xxxxShe looks away from the table, as though fascinated by the other people crowding tables at the restaurant. After all, why would she care where Adeline went? Why would she mind that the girl had disappeared without a trace, had completely vanished right after- well. There's not really a reason to care at all, right? Ness figures something came up. She figures that it was just a stupid drunk moment on Adeline's part, and doesn't blame the girl for vanishing afterwards- she probably doesn't even remember. Still, her head feels a bit funny for a moment thinking of it. Not one to frequent parties, she'd never been in that situation before. Truth be told, she's not even kissed very many people, despite the reputation her school has for their shenanigans.

xxxxIn her attempt to keep herself out of the conversation, her eyes find Cassidy Knox and Avan Harrison. Cassidy is Adeline's new step-sister- surely she would know. But Ness could never ask Cassidy. When the bullying had embittered Cassidy towards the world, the two of them had quite the falling out. She quickly moves her gaze over and catches Hunter looking over at her table. There is a very brief moment of eye contact, so of course Ness smiles and waves, a tiny motion, before Jenny asks her what she thinks about the subject.

xxxxThe girl whips around, thanking god that her complexion means that she doesn't turn completely red when blushing. Lord knows her skin is heating up from the question alone, though it ought not be. "Huh? Um. I don't know. I've never really spoken with her before, so I don't know. Maybe she was on a family vacation? Or some sort of spa retreat- I think going off the map for vacations are actually kind of a good idea. More relaxing. But yeah, I wouldn't know," she is far too flustered for someone who genuinely has no interest in the situation, and rambles on a bit more than necessary. An actor, Ness is not. Her every thought is written across her face, as per usual.

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Character Portrait: Lani Amasio-Ellison Character Portrait: Jamie Parata Character Portrait: Sydney Persson
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Mood: Critical ღ Outfit ღ Location: Three Guys Restaurant



Jamie does this thing - his head bows, his mouth sets - and Lani feels herself soften long before his sheepish gaze meets hers. Jamie would never intentionally hurt a soul or try to offend anyone, not unless it was under actual duress. This wasn't duress. This was just...well, that was the point of Lani questioning him because she honestly did not have an answer. But she hated when he did the thing because the thing always made her feel guilty, like she had done something wrong. Jamie just seemed to shrink into himself and that was when Lani's disdain of her own ability to intimidate shined through because the last person who needed to react to that was him. She could handle, perhaps, Adeline, shrinking back from her or even Ness. Those were her babies, but sometimes they both actually needed a firm hand. Jamie, on the other hand, didn't deserve that. The tightening in her chest continued when he barely was able to really meet her eyes.

It had never occurred to Lani to think about what senior year meant for either of them. For her, while it meant that she would finally be away from half of the people she could barely stand, she hadn't considered what it would mean for her relationship with Jamie. Out of everyone, it was the one relationship she had always felt secure with. A little distance hadn't really meant much to her. Perhaps her self-assured mentality in regards to their lifelong friendship came from the fact that regardless of Lani having had left New York, the two of them had managed to keep in touch. So, she had assumed it would always be like that. And with her grandfather's private jet at her disposal, Lani had never doubted for a second that she would be seeing Jamie a lot once they all graduated and moved on with their lives. For him to even consider their distance as something monumental though - monumental enough to not even communicate at all - made Lani stare at him for a moment longer.

"You're not...you don't suck", she finally decided on, stating it firmly, a hand on his shoulder and staring at Jamie head-on. Lani didn't know what she was exactly searching for, but she knew for a fact that there was something nagging in the back of her mind. She believed him. She believed him and genuinely wanted him to believe that they were good. She needed to believe that they were good. Jamie was stability and Lani couldn't fathom a time for them not to be at least on similar terms. At the same time, there was something...off and Lani couldn't put her finger on it. There was a guarded glint in Jamie's eyes that didn't belong and it made her frown just a bit before Lani exhaled heavily. "It's...it's fine...just talk to me, okay? You know you can talk to me...about anything. I'm always here. Don't care if I go to school in Europe, always. Promise." The feeling didn't leave her, but with her point made, she knew she needed to head back to Sydney and Adeline before the former killed the latter. Giving Jamie a soft smile, Lani linked their arms again, more relaxed and looser in her hold, and they walked over to where Sydney was sitting. Alone.

"Ummm...where did Adds go? Food's gonna be ready soon," she said the second the two of them were seated across from Sydney, raising an eyebrow at the impassive blonde.

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Character Portrait: Lani Amasio-Ellison Character Portrait: Jamie Parata Character Portrait: Sydney Persson
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Sydney was pleased that it didn't take long for Lani and Jamie to appear, after Adeline had left. She had hoped that Lani was going to bring Ness back too, because Cassidy's comments from earlier, combined with Adeline's claims from minutes ago, had piqued her interest. She knew better than to think that she could grill Ness for the truth if Lani was sitting right there, because she knew how protective Lani could get, but some innocent poking and prodding for the truth wasn't going to hurt anyone. Instead, though, Lani only returned to the table with Jamie, so Sydney had to pretend like she was fine with that. It wasn't like there was anything wrong with Jamie anyway. He seemed a little bland for her tastes, but Sydney knew that he was (maybe surprisingly) friends with a lot of people, obviously including Lani, so she wasn't quick to completely dismiss him. She knew better than to play her cards in a rashly impulsive manner, when it came to possible helpful connections, so she smiled as they approached, and even when Lani commented on Adeline's disappearance.

With a dismissive wave of her hand, she said, "She's fine, don't worry about her. She needed a minute to lose her attitude, so I told her that we'd just meet her back at school. We'll have to make sure that the waitress gives us a piece of lettuce in a takeout bag for her though, since I'm sure that's all she was planning on eating anyway." Her tone was casual enough that it didn't sound bitchy or sharp on the surface level, but obviously, the words spoke to how she wasn't exactly being nice or sensitive towards their friend. She continued on though, without leaving time for her to do anything more than take a breath in between sentences. "But enough about her!" she clasped her hands together, a look of pleasure on her face as her gaze drifted to Jamie. "I'm glad Lani's finally bringing you around, Jamie," she smiled, before turning her head back towards Lani. "I feel like you're always depriving Addy and I the pleasure of getting to know your other friends, Lani. Did Ness think she was too good to join, or something?"

Lani hummed noncommittally, staring at Sydney with the same eyebrow raised though she did not speak on the matter of Adeline's attitude. Adeline fed off of whatever emotional environment they were in and while there were times when even Lani wanted to smack some sense into the girl, she could reason Adeline's recent temperament as a result of Sydney's bad mood. She couldn't leave it all on the other blonde for at least, Sydney had a reason for her disposition. At the same time, she knew that a part of whatever attitude Adeline had - and considering it was enough for her to be dismissed so swiftly - was a direct result of Sydney's own underlying rage. Or whatever the emotion was that rankled stronger beneath the cheerful tranquility she was conveying.

Luckily, instead of allowing the silence of Lani not even attempting to question Sydney for what actually happened - and she wouldn't have done so with Jamie at the table and bore him about whatever issues that plagued the trio - the waitress arrived with their orders, placing the platter Sydney had requested particularly for Adeline in the center. When her plate was set before her, Lani decided to answer, unrepentant, "Didn't think of inviting her. Those are all of her usual friends. Seemed a bit wrong to take her away and plus, Ness isn't the one I didn't get to talk to this summer. And I'm selfish like that."

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Character Portrait: Lani Amasio-Ellison Character Portrait: Jamie Parata Character Portrait: Adeline Arnault Character Portrait: Ness Oberlin Character Portrait: Sydney Persson
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Mood: Amused ღ Outfit ღ Location: Taxi w/ Adeline & Sydney



Without having to take care of many of her Student Government Association responsibilities thus far, Lani had had a pretty decent first week of school. It wasn't a full week, for which she was grateful, but it was enough to assauge any worries she had about how the upcoming school year was going to be. The classes were pretty straight forward, teachers seemed to know what they were doing (and were less excited to be back than the students, but that was neither here nor there), and she was ready for the rest of what was to come. She probably wasn't as ready for the college application process and all that that entailed, but for now, Lani was pretty good. She was somewhat secure in not having any issues with Jamie for now, she had even gotten the ice cream with Ness after school the other day, and after school today, she had managed to get a pretty sweet manicure and matching pedicure at the Cornelia Spa at the Surrey with her kui fefine upon the older woman's return from Lanai. The skin softening experience of the Honey Harmony treatment along with the manicure and pedicure left her feeling readier than ever for Hunter's party. And if she happened to have chosen a much more licentious attire for the evening in lieu of her feel-good mentality, well, that was also neither here nor there. Her skin was super soft, her makeup was still more relaxed than a good number of her classmates' usually were on a good day, and she was in a great mood. Lani felt like she deserved to show off every now and then. Plus, conditioning in these last few weeks for the upcoming volleyball season had her abdomen just slightly more defined than its simply flat quality from earlier in the summer and Lani felt too proud to hide.

As a last minute decision on the way to Hunter's party to have a nail post for Instagram, Lani had just finished adding the faintest hint of a filter to the pic she had chosen when Adeline grasped her free hand, and the excitement from the other girl had Lani grinning widely. For the sake of the group, Adeline's better mood in the last few days had helped significantly. Sydney had slowly become less cold towards them and while Lani knew this wasn't the end of her rightful reaction towards Liam's fuckery, Adeline also being of a bad disposition did no one any favors. And Lani preferred the brunette the way she was now - exuberant and vivacious. Which was why she only laughed when her friend exclaimed that she obviously needed to give Evan a chance. Her laugh only continued when Sydney decided to hop on the let's-hook-Lani-up brigade. "Thanks, mom, I'm so glad I have your approval," she sarcastically joked, leaning back a bit more in the backseat of the taxi they took. Lani's laugh simmered down to chuckling before she bit her lightly glossed lower lip, humming to herself before grinning again. "And we may or may not have...indulged ourselves a little last year. But I didn't sleep with him!" The insistence was genuine, despite the laughing smile on her face. Because she didn't sleep with him. That didn't mean Evan had walked away completely unscathed if the plethora of hickeys Lani had left behind in their makeout session had anything to say about it. Evan had ended up being really cool later and while Lani had never slept with him, it wasn't like she hadn't entertained the idea of it. She also wasn't against it. However, if she was doing any hooking up, then both her friends had to be up for it as well. "But I better not be the only one letting loose tonight. I have two very hot and gorgeous friends who better not be lurking along the walls when there are probably gonna be hot guys all around," she exclaimed, a pointed look at Adeline before her gaze fell on Sydney. "And as much as we're avoiding speaking on it, the way I see it is this...the best way to get over someone is to get under someone else...or on top of it. Or you can use them to make a point, I don't really care. You can pick and choose, queenie, but anyone who manages to get Sydney Persson interested enough to stare at them more than her drink gets my approval for the night." She stated the last part with a wink, grin returning at the thought. For one, Liam was going to eat his heart out because Sydney was just always gorgeous and he was missing out while being an unworthy douche. But two, the idea of either of her friends hooking up and having fun was definitely something to enjoy. Especially if Lani got to hear about it later.

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Character Portrait: Jamie Parata Character Portrait: Ness Oberlin Character Portrait: Liam Koch Character Portrait: Hunter Devlin
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Hunter was too used to the crazy things that tended to happen at his parties to really be fazed by what was going on tonight, but he wasn't an idiot. When Trevor McNamara accidentally dropped a bottle of beer, sending alcohol and glass shattering all over his kitchen floor, he threatened that he was going to kick the guy out if he didn't clean that shit up that minute. When Kelsey Taylor, a girl from another private girls school in the city, got drunk on two shots of tequila, and became so careless that her cup of cranberry vodka spilled all over one of his couch cushions, that he knew his mother had just had reupholstered, he warned her friends that if they didn't take better care of her, and she didn't stop drinking, she was going to have to leave. He was a chill guy, and being relaxed and all about the fun was basically what he was known for, but at the same time, he wasn't stupid. His parents weren't going to be back home until Monday night, but he was leaving Sunday morning to go out to the Hamptons, so that meant that he only had tomorrow to clean up his entire house. And considering that he was already more than a few beers in, it was likely that he would end up sleeping into the late afternoon tomorrow, and therefore cut back even further on the time he had to redo his house if his friends left it in shambles. Luckily, most of the people here were classy enough to know not to trash his house, and he (possibly stupidly) trusted them enough to really give the guests a lot of freedom. Although the majority of his guests were currently located on the rooftop terrace, and in the room right below that, which had originally been a large bedroom space, but had since been converted into a "man cave", there were some floaters on all five floors of the house. Hunter didn't mind, since he was content with the "ignorance is bliss" motto, and knew that as long as he couldn't see anyone causing trouble, he couldn't blame himself for not stopping it. Besides, once he had realized that Ness had arrived, he became even more comfortable with remaining on the rooftop.

Even when he and Liam had crushed it in the game of beer pong that they had been playing, and were supposed to verse their next set of future-losers, Hunter couldn't focus on the game. "Man, count me out for this round. Gotta do some mingling. Y'know, fulfill my host duties," he reasoned, slapping the guy on the shoulder in a friendly see-you-in-a-bit sort of way, before departing from the guy. It seemed like a safe move to make, considering that there were bound to be a bunch of guys ready to jump into Hunter's spot, seeing as being Liam's partner basically automatically meant that you were going to win the game, and therefore be able to gloat in other people's faces. Plus, Hunter hadn't noticed Sydney around yet, and he knew that given how he was, he definitely would have noticed if she was here, so it seemed safe to leave his friend. It wasn't that Hunter felt like he couldn't trust the two of them in the same space... but more so, he didn't know what to expect from the two of them being in the same space. He had seen Sydney only a couple of times over the past few days, and none of those times had involved direct person to person contact between Sydney and Liam, and, well... given how little he knew about what had really went down between them, thanks to Liam being so damn casually dismissive about it all, Hunter just felt like he wanted to be there to simmer down anything that could possibly happen. If he thought a stained couch cushion was a night-ruiner, having one of them push the other off his roof would be in a league of its own, and given those two, you could never be too surprised.

"Hey Ness!" Hunter greeted, a tad more excitedly than he had originally planned on it sounding, before looking to Jamie and offering him a more casual, yet still friendly nod of his head. "What's up, man?" He continued just a second later, looking more at Ness now. "I'm glad to see you two here. I didn't see you around at any of my little get togethers over the summer. Thought that party last spring scared you off for good," he laughed. "But what've you been up to all summer? I'm gonna head downstairs to grab a drink. We've got the keg up here, but all of the bottled beers and the liquor and stuff are down there, so we can keep it cold. You two want anything?"

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Character Portrait: Jamie Parata Character Portrait: Ness Oberlin Character Portrait: Hunter Devlin
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xxxxEven with an express invitation and a close friend at her side, Ness feels somewhat nervous about being here. It's not necessarily a problem with the drinking or the chaos of some of her peers, but the butterflies flitting about her stomach as the scene reminds her of a few months prior. A girl stumbles past clearly having pregamed before coming, and for a second Ness nearly mistakes her for Adeline, though of course it isn't. Lani and her friends would never arrive a moment sooner than fashionably late. Without a doubt they are finishing up putting the perfect touches on their outfits. Ness, meanwhile, had given up trying to run her fingers through her hair before Jamie forced her out of her room, and had worn one of her self-made dresses- a free flowing slip of a thing.

xxxxHolding an empty red cup in her hand (drained of it's non-alcoholic pepsi-brand contents), she can't help but let her eyes flicker about from group to group. Clearly she's being less than subtle about it, as Jamie grows impatient with her fidgeting within fifteen minutes of them arriving. "Who are you looking for Ness? I'm feeling antsy just watching you," he says, his own cup in hand. His drink, however, is not non-alcoholic. Ness turns bright red at his words and spins to look at him, light on her feet.

xxxx"Lani! She's definitely coming," Ness lies poorly, but Jamie elects to overlook it. Instead, he smiles at his friend and decides to try and help her relax at least a little bit, as this on edge look is sort of unsettling in the normally bright and somewhat unaware girl.

xxxx"She'll get here when she gets here. Now come on, Ness, I know you want to dance," he's not wrong, of course. Ness has always loved dancing, especially when it is the type that requires no particular synchronization or extreme flexibility. She smiles, breaking through the stiffness of her previous expression with a far more sparkling, more familiar Ness. Without a word she has grabbed Jamie by the hand and dragging him towards the music, making the young man slightly regret his choice. He isn't actually much of a dancer.

xxxxIt's a little while longer, with a time lapse in which drinks were spilled and glass broken, when Ness and Jamie have found themselves on Hunter's rooftop. By this point, Ness has taken the chance on a drink, and is clearly far more at ease than she had been at the beginning of the party. She's just enjoying the fresh air against her face, somewhat heated from moving around and being in a crowded space.

To: Nova
Already here! I'm on the roof, when you get here!


xxxxShe's just sending the text when a familiar face walks up to them to say hello. "Nice to see ya," Jamie responds, eyebrow slightly raised in that way it quirks when he's somewhat curious about something. "Ah, sorry- I'm not really used to this scene I guess," Ness confesses, but pauses when he mentions worrying that they may have been frightened away. There's no way for him to know what happened, and even if he did it's probably incredibly normal at his parties so Hunter wouldn't blink an eye at it. Still, it was strange for Ness and thinking about it again reintroduces butterflies to her internal organs.

xxxxThis sudden feeling of nervousness makes Hunter's offer of a drink far more tempting than it might typically be for Ness. "Yes, actually! Um. What do you recommend?" unversed in most drinks beyond the occasional wine or champagne, she doesn't have a specific request to give. Jamie gives her a somewhat surprised look, but he recalls a conversation during the summer in which she had mentioned wanting to branch out and experience more new things. Perhaps this is one of those things. Still, he makes a note to keep an eye on Ness just in case. She's exactly the sort to get into trouble when she has had a few drinks, he can already tell.

xxxx"How about we walk down with you?" he suggests, wanting to make sure Hunter doesn't pick out something too strong for Ness.

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Character Portrait: Jamie Parata Character Portrait: Ness Oberlin Character Portrait: Hunter Devlin
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"Yeah, yeah, come down with me," Hunter nodded, quickly agreeing with Jamie's suggestion that they come down with him. "I know you've got tastes that are higher than the keg beer up here, Ness, so hmm... what do I recommend...?" He pondered the thought for a moment, knowing that he wanted to pick something out that would be well suited for Ness. He wasn't the kind of guy who would purposely load her up with some drink that was just fruity enough to hide the strong kick of the alcohol hiding behind it, because he wasn't looking to get Ness plastered. Though he wasn't sure if she had drank at his last party or not, he knew that in general, she was an innocent kind of girl. He doubted that even if she had drank, she had went overboard, so he knew that it was best to start her off with something simple, yet something that was decent enough that it wouldn't look like he had bad tastes, since she was trusting him with the suggestion. Hunter knew that he was overthinking things, and purposely slowed his pace just a bit, when he realized that maybe that nervousness in him was causing him to walk faster than he needed to be. After holding the door to the stairwell open for Avan, who headed down before them, he walked down with Ness and Jamie. It only took a few seconds for them to get to the next floor, and with people coming up right beside them, there was no awkward silence, for which Hunter was grateful for. Though lots of familiar faces passed them, Hunter was surprised that he hadn't seen any of Sydney's crew members yet. Seeing Sydney would have excited Hunter in his own right, but he was also good friends with Lani, and Adeline was always a fun person to have around too, so he hoped that they would show up. He was tempted to just text them and find out, especially since knowing one way or the other meant that he could either prepare for a confrontation between Sydney and Liam, or relax and not have to worry about it for the night, but he was too preoccupied now, and also didn't want to seem like a nuisance to the girls.

Once they got to the fifth floor, Hunter led them towards the bar. No one was actually manning the bar, and it was more of a free for all, with bottles of liquor lining the counter top, and mixers on a table besides them. [color=#A36D00]"So, I actually suck with suggestions, since I usually just stick to beer or Jack & Coke, and I don't know if that's what you'd be into,"
he admitted, somewhat sheepishly with a smile as he rubbed the back of his neck. "Lots of the girls seem to go for cranberry juice or orange juice, with a splash of vodka, and we've got a ton of bottled beers and some of that fruity Mike's Hard stuff in the fridge of there," he said, pointing to a fridge at the back of the bar area. "Any of that sound like it would be up your ally?" He didn't offer anything to Jamie, simply because Hunter assumed that he was more capable of piking something out on his own, and he didn't want to insult him by suggesting otherwise.

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Character Portrait: Lani Amasio-Ellison Character Portrait: Jamie Parata Character Portrait: Adeline Arnault Character Portrait: Ness Oberlin Character Portrait: Sydney Persson Character Portrait: Hunter Devlin
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xxxxJamie slowed his pace to walk besides Ness as they head downstairs for the drinks, knowing that she has to work a bit to keep up with people who have longer legs such as himself. Hunter doesn't seem to have noticed this as he walks quickly ahead of them, prompting a bit of curiosity from Jamie. Hunter, from what Jamie has known of him, isn't the sort who would feel the need to rush around- especially not at his own house party. After all, this is his kingdom and hear Hunter is king. Why should a king hurry? Still, he seems to relax a bit and slip into his typical persona as others join them at the stairs and start small conversation on the way down. Ness engages a girl who is apparently in one of her classes. Jamie is content enough to walk quietly and listen to the little conversations around him, picking up things here or there but nothing particularly interesting. Of course, by the end of the night there will have to be something of note. For one thing, there is no way Liam and Sydney won't both make appearances- and he doubts that the two of them would do well in the same room at the moment.

xxxxAnd if Sydney stops by, Lani will without a doubt be with her. It's for the best that she confronted him at lunch the other day, as it to some degree released some of the tension that had formed between them over the summer. However, it means for certain that he can no longer get away with avoiding her and slipping out of notice at his convenience. His perhaps cowardly plan of avoiding the issue has failed, meaning that Jamie will simply have to stiffen his upper lip and suffer in silence. Genuinely talking to Lani about his feelings isn't even remotely an option to him, leaving grinning and bearing it the only possibility the young man can see. Perhaps a few drinks will make him feel more at ease with the situation. Jamie knows for a fact that he isn't a talkative drunk, so that shouldn't be a problem. He's fairly certain that he's just a sleepy, sort of cuddly one. Not too much room for trouble, which is fortunate for someone who prefers to fly just under the radar for the most part.

xxxxWhile Hunter makes his suggestions to Ness, who honestly has no idea what she wants, Jamie grabs a bottle of beer from the fridge. He spots Lani and her crew stepping out of the elevator and heading over towards the bar where they stand. "Hey, D-Mac, Did you just get here?" he uses her affectionate nickname, reserved for close friends. He can't remember where the nickname came from- was it one of her brothers, or did he himself originate it? Either way, he speaks it easily, knowing that he, if anyone, is permitted to use it. Jamie sort of nods at Adeline and Sydney, but doesn't know them well enough to say hello really. If anything, Sydney in particular makes him feel a tad uncomfortable. Lunch had been a bit rough for him partially for the reason.

xxxxNess is leaning more towards something light, which she figures Mike's Hard Lemonade would be, when she spots Adeline standing with Sydney and Lani. Jamie seems to have stopped them to say hello to Lani (which she's glad for), keeping them an arm's length away for the moment. Still, seeing Adeline makes her feel rather anxious yet again, and prompts a change of course in her drink selection.

xxxx"Um. Vodka and with a bit of cranberry juice sounds good, actually," she says, trying and failing to act casual as though she knows precisely what she's asking for and has done it a million times. As if she's had vodka before. "I can pour it myself if you need to help Sydney and them though!" she adds quickly. Though truth be told, letting her decide the proportions would perhaps not be the best of ideas.

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Character Portrait: Lani Amasio-Ellison Character Portrait: Jamie Parata Character Portrait: Adeline Arnault Character Portrait: Ness Oberlin Character Portrait: Sydney Persson Character Portrait: Hunter Devlin
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"How about cranberry juice with a bit of vodka?" Hunter proposed, reversing her order with a smirk. It was probably what she meant to begin with, but it felt necessary to make a playful point out of him questioning just how much vodka she could really handle. He doubted it would be much, which wasn't necessarily saying anything bad about her, but spoke to Hunter's perception of her tolerance level. Ness definitely didn't seem like the kind of girl who had a tolerance built to take a bottle of Absolut to the body in a night, and he actually respected that. Though he wanted her to loosen up, so he could see what that version of Ness was like, he didn't need her blacking out at his house. He would save that job for Adeline, who had just entered the room with Lani and Sydney at her side. Hunter was glad to see the three of them. While anyone would feel honored to have the royal trio showing up at their party, Hunter was actually well enough acquainted with the three to like them for reasons beyond their reputations, so he was glad to see them for more personal reasons. He shook his head when Ness insisted that she could pour her own drink if he needed to help Sydney and them. While Hunter definitely planned on greeting the trio, he wasn't in that much of a rush to do so. "They can wait," he insisted. "It's not every day that I see Ness Oberlin at one of my parties. The least I can do is pour her a drink," he said teasingly, as he grabbed a red cup from the stack and filled it with cranberry juice, before pouring two shots worth of vodka into it. "I hope that's not too much of a kick for you," he said as he slid the drink towards her, wondering if he should have started her off with just a shot's worth.

Jamie had walked over to talk to the girls, but Hunter figured that even if they planned on going up to the roof immediately, they would stop by the bar that he and Ness stood by first, to make drinks. There was a keg upstairs, but he assumed that given their tastes, they would at least want to start off with something more "top shelf" quality. Adeline was easy, because Hunter knew that she would likely drink anything made for her, and just based off of their prior partying experiences together, he took a good guess and decided she would probably want a Red Bull vodka. If he was being smart, he would have known that that wasn't a good drink to give someone like Adeline, considering that she usually had enough energy to not need an energy drink on top of that, and that the vodka plus all of that caffeine right off the bat, usually led to her thinking she could handle more drinks later on than her body would really be able to tolerate. Hunter wasn't in the business of being anyone's parent though, and all that he knew was that Adeline was fun to party with, regardless of having a tendency to go overboard. "Adeline usually starts her night off with a Vodka Red Bull," Hunter said, explaining why he was grabbing a can of Red Bull from the fridge and pouring it into a cup before topping it off with a considerable amount of vodka. He moved quickly, doubting that Jamie would be able to keep the trio's attention and now feeling a more urgent need to get them drinks, when he remembered that Liam was upstairs. Stalling them down here seemed like a good move, even if he knew that Sydney and his best friend would have to face each other at some point. "And Sydney's usually a margarita drinker, but I don't have any margarita mix..." he bit his lip at that realization, before grabbing the cranberry juice that he had used for Ness, and tossing some of that into a cup with seltzer and vodka, as he recalled Sydney's preference for mixed drinks that were carbonated. "So hopefully she's cool with a vodka cranberry too... and Lani's a little bit more tricky, since I feel like she's not too specific with what she drinks... so she's getting one of those too." He didn't even realize that Ness and Lani were good friends, and therefore, he could have asked her for a drink selection, but he looked back to her with a smile when the three drinks were finished. "Mind grabbing Adeline's for me? I don't wanna drop these," he said, his hands already full with Lani and Sydney's drinks, as he nodded for Ness to follow him over to the group talking with Jamie.

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Character Portrait: Lani Amasio-Ellison Character Portrait: Jamie Parata Character Portrait: Adeline Arnault Character Portrait: Sydney Persson
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"We don't want her too loose. Don't be a bad influence on our President," Sydney said, laughing just a bit as she looked to Adeline, as if they weren't talking about Lani while she was standing right there. It took just a minute or two for them to reach the fifth floor of the townhouse, where the elevator doors opened to allow them an exit. She could hear music playing more loudly now, though it wasn't overbearingly loud. Just upon a quick glance, the vibes seemed good. There were lots of people in the party room, the one that was likely Hunter's father's "man cave" but was where the teens seemed to empty out into if they weren't on the rooftop. Sydney liked the area here, because it was where the liquor tended to be, but it also felt more intimate than the rooftop. Of course, there were guest bedrooms and actual areas downstairs that were normally completely vacant during the parties, if she wanted an area that was actually intimate, but if she just wanted to hang out and talk with her friends, she liked doing it down here, rather than upstairs. With that said, especially when her initial glance led her to believe that Liam had to be upstairs if he was already here, Sydney was in no rush to leave this room as she headed in with her girls. Though Jamie was the first to greet them (and even then, his greeting was mostly for Lani), she spotted Hunter just a few feet away with Ness Oberlin, and they looked like they were getting ready to come over to them too. While Sydney wanted to go say hello, she was much more used to letting people come to her. Even when it was someone like Hunter, who she was comfortably friends with, she liked it when people acknowledged her before she did to them. That was why Jamie received nothing more than a simple smile in response to his nod of acknowledgment, and why she overlooked the time that she should have given Lani to answer him, in favor of speaking up herself. "Drinks, ladies? What are we having?"

Lani rolled her eyes at Adeline's insistence at wanting to "loosen" her up. She still wasn't completely sold on getting significantly intoxicated for the night, but she couldn't help but grin after Sydney's response before replying, "Nah, this president's down for some corrupting. Be a bad influence, Addy." She probably shouldn't entertain that because knowing Adeline, she might actually shove shots in Lani's face. And Lani liked to consider herself tough when it came to drinking. She generally could hold her own sometimes against the guys, if she put her mind to it. But she wasn't invincible and there was no doubt in her mind that Adeline could probably get Lani absolutely trashed if she gave her too much leeway. However, she was also surmising that the year was just starting - their senior year. Just a smidgen of recklessness wouldn't hurt anyone, at least a little at the beginning, right?

Once they reached the fifth floor, Lani scanned the room, glancing fleetingly at all the familiar faces that she could possibly invest some time in while at the party. It wasn't strange for her to branch away from the girls during events. Lani always made it a priority to make it back to them, even if it was just for a quick check-in to make sure Sydney wasn't ready to claw someone's eyes out and Adeline wasn't passed out on the floor somebody, but making a few rounds always was on the agenda. Plus, it gave her time to hang out with Jamie, if he actually came out or not. Which, luckily, he did, this time around. Lani beamed when she saw him, taking that extra step, slightly away from the girls when he came over. "Hey, yeah. Ya know, the best way to make an entrance is to be fashionably late," she replied. She didn't bother looking around for Ness as she figured that if he was here, the girl was, but before she could ponder the other girl's actual location, Sydney had spoken up and Lani glanced back at her before humming, gaze falling on Jamie's bottle. "I could drink," she commented mildly to Sydney before turning back to Jamie. "That brew any good?"

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Character Portrait: Lani Amasio-Ellison Character Portrait: Jamie Parata Character Portrait: Adeline Arnault Character Portrait: Ness Oberlin Character Portrait: Sydney Persson Character Portrait: Hunter Devlin Character Portrait: Avan Harrison Character Portrait: Nova Blanchett
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In the elevator, Adeline sent out a text message to Nova that read, "Was that you who pulled up right after me and Lani and Syd? I hope so!!!! Find me tonight, we need to catch up!". She and Nova didn't necessarily run in the same friend group, but Adeline definitely considered Nova to be a friend. She was an exception from Adeline's perception of the theater kids being weird, because... well, Adeline just didn't think she was weird. She had gotten to know Nova, and had she given all of the other kids the same chance, she likely would have found that they were all far more normal and relatable than she pinned them as being. Adeline had no need to give any of them a chance though, given that she was content with her circle of friends as it was. Throw in the fact that she had gotten more than she had bargained for with her drunken encounter with another theater kid, who she was doing her best not to worry about as the elevator moved closer and closer to the fifth floor, and she was all the more content with Nova being a rare exception to her friend rule. Though she had seen Nova in a few of her classes over the past two days, they hadn't had enough time to actually catch up, and given that they hadn't actually hung out since last spring, seeing Nova tonight was definitely one of her priorities.

As she followed the girls out of the elevator, she didn't initially see anyone too interesting. Liam wasn't in her immediate line of sight, which was a relief, and Anissa wasn't either, though Adeline was pretty convinced that the girl wouldn't be showing her face around any social events for a good while. When Jamie approached, however, Adeline's energy level sunk for a moment. She felt like that meant that Ness had to be here, even if it realistically didn't mean that she was for sure. Her initial thought was proven right, however, when she looked further into the room, by Hunter's bar, and found the girl standing besides Hunter. Adeline was impulsive, and given that nature, she didn't let herself think the situation through fully and weigh the pros and cons. Instead, she took a split second to decide between turning around, getting back into the elevator and leaving the party immediately, before Ness could see her, or the other option, which was pretending like she wasn't bothered at all. With Sydney asking what they wanted to drink, and Lani already haven given her permission to, in Adeline's mind, get her obliterated, she felt like she had to go with the second option, if for nothing else than to start senior year off on the right note.

Though Lani's question wasn't directed to her, Adeline didn't mind chiming in with, "Doesn't matter if it's any good because you're not drinking beer tonight! We're having fun tonight, and fun requires something with more than a five percent alcohol content!" If she really wanted to be a pain, she would have grabbed Lani's arm right then and there and yanked her away from Jamie in search of some "real" alcohol, but she knew better than that. For one, she knew that just because she didn't understand Lani's closeness with Jamie didn't mean that there friendship was non-existent. It was quite existent, and Lani interacting with him before anyone else, given that she likely knew every single person at this party (or at least, they knew her), spoke to that. She didn't have to understand the friendship on a real level to respect it, and besides that, Adeline considered that leaving Lani here while she made their drinks could be fun. She was no mixologist but she knew the most basic drink recipes, and a few extras that were the ones that could get anyone obliterated. It wasn't a necessary talent, given that Adeline was the kind of girl who was quite content with other people making her fancy cocktails for her, or just taking enough shots of alcohol that the fruity mixers in drinks were no longer necessary to give her a buzz, but it was fun to make drinks occasionally. With Sydney by her side, she knew that she wouldn't be able to get away with going too crazy, but that didn't mean that she wasn't going to attempt it anyway.

On that note, she hurried away from the girls and Jamie, only verbalizing a "B-R-B!" as she darted towards the bar. There were a few kids standing by it, but the only ones who Adeline really cared about were Hunter, Ness, and Avan, who she noticed last, and only as she got closer. She was already being risky by acknowledging Ness, so she did her best to act like she hadn't seen Avan on the far side of the bar. "Hunter!" Adeline greeted cheerfully as she approached the pair, who were both holding two drinks each. That seemed more natural for Hunter than Ness, and in a move that felt daring to Adeline, but could only seem friendly to anyone who didn't know the girls' situation, she looked to Ness with a grin. Her words were directed at Hunter despite her eyes playfully remaining on (and possibly roving over) Ness, as she spoke. "It's not even nine o'clock and you already have someone like her double fisting? God, Hunter, you're a bad influence...but I don't hate it." Even though she had done a good job at convincing herself that Ness had been just as drunk as she had been that night last spring, the common sense side of Adeline knew that that probably wasn't the case. She didn't think that Ness had been as sober as she had been, but she also doubted that she was drunk. Therefore, seeing the girl with two drinks in her hand made her feel a little bit better, like maybe it hadn't been all her fault and doing that they had ended up in that bedroom together. "But I'm over here because I need something strong for me, stronger for Lani, and even stronger for Syd. You know that we need to get Syd trashed tonight if you-know-who is here, and I need Lani to add 'President of Alcoholics Anonymous' to her extracurricular activity resume for college by the end of this semester, aannnddd, I was just kidding when I said that I wanted the least strong of the drinks. You know that's not happening tonight. So, what am I drinking? And what are you two drinking?" This side of Adeline, the one that was overflowing with energy was the one that she liked, and even if it had taken a little bit of pregaming with drinks at Sydney's to get her back into embracing her fun side, she wasn't complaining.