I'm probably the biggest angsty Clyrnin writer on the site, but I felt as though my babies needed a bit of happiness in their existence, so I wrote a bit of fluffy writing.
I'm not good at fluff, so sorry for this, but if you're going to favourite, please review
"Claire!" Myrnin's voice is too excited for Claire to handle at this early time on a Monday morning—since things ended with Shane, she's not been a particular fan of mornings—and she can't help but groan. "What is it, have I said something wrong?" Myrnin questions, his brow furrowing as he tries to think of anything he's done wrong in the ten seconds they've been together.
Claire shakes her head, not in the mood to placate Myrnin every time he worries he's said something wrong. "No, no, it's fine, I'm just tired," she explains, taking a seat at the lab bench Myrnin's standing at. "Why are you so happy this morning, anyway?"
"I'm always happy!" Myrnin replies, if anything more exuberant than before. "But if there is a reason that I am more happy than usual, it is this," he continues, lifting an envelope from amidst the mess upon the table and handing it to Claire.
Her interest piqued, Claire accepts the item, noting the careful calligraphy on the front, the intricate design of the consonants of her name confirming that this isn't Myrnin's doing; he scrawls his words so that all the letters combine together. When she turns the envelope to open it, she notices that it has been heat-sealed rather than licked closed, and that there's a seal underneath. She recognises it, of course: Amelie.
The question Claire's currently asking herself is this: why on earth is Amelie sending her a letter via Myrnin?
"Open it," Myrnin urges, a smile on his face that Claire doesn't quite understand. Still, she complies with his wish, digging her nail into the envelope to unearth what lies inside-which isn't quite what she imagined it would be.
It's a card—an invitation card, she soon deduces—which reminds her of the cards sent to the other three members of her home (or, at least when there was another three of them) at the time of the Welcome Feast. But this time, rather than being an invitation to a feast that nobody in their right minds would want to go to (Claire blames Myrnin's influence for her desire to go, as well as her inability to stay out of trouble)…it's an invitation for a birthday party.
And not just any birthday party: it's Myrnin's birthday party.
"Myrnin, I thought you said that you don't know when your birthday is?" Claire asks, frowning slightly. The card doesn't seem to give away many details other than that it's for Myrnin's birthday and that it's happening next week.
"That's right," Myrnin nods, grinning wider as he speaks.
"Then that sort of…opposes the idea of having a birthday party?" is Claire's response, turning the card over to see if there's anything more there. There isn't, of course; Amelie's details about the party are brief and to the point, with no wasted words. She certainly doesn't need the back.
"Not at all, Claire, I believe it is to the contrary!" he says, picking up a vial of what Claire really hopes isn't sulphuric acid. He looks like he's about to drop it…and that isn't something she particularly wants covering her today. "I know that I am another year older, I just don't know when the particular date to commemorate is…or the age, but that is another matter, and anyway, Amelie has a general idea. But I am another year older this year…so why not celebrate it at the beginning of the year?"
In fairness, Claire thinks, you can't argue with the logic; if she didn't know the exact date of her birth, she would want to celebrate the fact that she had survived another three hundred and sixty five (or six, dependent on the year) days of life. So why shouldn't Myrnin?
"So, who do I RSVP to?" Claire asks, a smile slipping onto her lips; she knows that Myrnin's excited, and she is, too. Whenever he's happy (up to a point) she's happy, because they almost seem to have a connection nowadays…their emotions are joined, due to them spending so much time together, and she knows more than ever that if she needs someone to protect her, the first person in line will be Myrnin.
"RSVP…?" Myrnin trails off, and Claire rolls her eyes. Evidently, abbreviations of French aren't his strong point.
"Who do I tell I'm coming?" she rephrases. "I mean, it's slightly obvious that you didn't write the invites, so I'm guessing that you're not in charge of the guest list either…is it Amelie I want to be telling?"
There's a hurt look that flashes across Myrnin's face, as though the fact that Claire thinks he's incapable of doing this breaks him apart slightly, but before Claire can comment on it, there's not a trace left. "You tell Amelie, of course," he replies, his tone very slightly curt. "But that's more than enough about my birthday—though I am rather excited about that; don't forget you need to get me a present—because I have something very, very special to show you…"
As he begins to explain about some new development he's made in the name of modern day alchemy, Claire drifts off, her mind awash with many different things. Firstly, perhaps most pressing, what to get the man who has everything he wants that's under three million dollars and the only way to get him what he wants would be to join with Amelie, something that wouldn't be too strange at all…but secondly, and perhaps more urgent in order to keep her sane, why does she get the feeling that if he asked her to give him a birthday kiss, she wouldn't hesitate in the slightest?
(Then there's the questioning of why he would ask her to do that, what she should wear to the party that won't offend Amelie's sudden interest in her clothing, and how she should tell Eve and Michael that she's not only going to a vampire's birthday party, but that it's Myrnin's. But these issues are nothing compared to the others.)
The day before the party, Claire's paid a visit from perhaps the most unlikely person to pay her it: Oliver.
"What do you want?" she asks coolly, suddenly remembering the fact that being a smart Alec to Oliver in the Glass House isn't the best idea; he can get in without needing an invitation.
He seems to have expected her response to be this, however, for there is merely a slight tightening of his lips in response to her words. "Hello, Claire, how are you today?" he asks, though evidently doesn't expect an answer because he continues on near immediately. "I would appreciate you permitting me into your home because in this bag—before you ask, no, it is not my bag—are the fruits of Amelie's friendship with you."
"I didn't realise that we were friends," Claire mutters, realising that Oliver must have been waiting for a comment about the bag in his hand. That's not her ground though, that's Eve's—so, Claire thinks, it's good for Oliver that Eve isn't home.
"They are for the party tomorrow," Oliver continues on, as though Claire hadn't spoken. "And there are also some instructions about what to do, what not to do—the general etiquette that no member of your generation is aware of, as far as I can tell—which she wants me to go through with you."
Claire groans but opens the door wider to allow Oliver in, very aware of the untidiness of her appearance. She suddenly remembers that she doesn't care, however; only if it was Amelie would she be concerned.
"So why could my dear friend not come and tell me this herself?" Claire asks sweetly as she falls backwards into her favourite chair, not bothering to offer Oliver refreshment. She wants him gone as fast as possible, and she thinks that if he had a cup of tea—as he would not be getting anything stronger than that—he would remain in her home even longer.
Oliver rolls his eyes at Claire's tone but begins to unpack the bag, setting a dress down on the sofa next to him that makes Claire's eyes pop; she's still not particularly one for dressing up, but even she can appreciate a beautiful dress. "She's setting up the party to make sure that there is absolutely no way that the crazy dog can moan about it," he replies, taking out of the bag at the same time a small envelope. "This is the present Amelie has gotten him—well, the order form. Apparently, he wants some sort of hydraulic machine, she heard you say, and so she has signed the card from yourself and her alike. Why, I haven't the foggiest idea, she gave me a packet of coffee for my own day of birth, but that's the Founder for you."
"Maybe it's because she likes Myrnin better," Claire can't help but reply, a smile slipping onto her lips. "And maybe she thinks that you need to get a bit of caffeine in you to make you move faster." The innuendo isn't intentional but Claire manages to stop herself blushing to make it seem as though it was—and it unnerves Oliver.
He doesn't make another mention of the unfairness of the grandness of Myrnin's birthday as he reveals the details about the party—it's occurring in Amelie's ballroom, there are vampires he's been friends with (Oliver snorts when he says the word friends, which has Claire worried and strangely jealous concurrently) attending, and apparently there's a chocolate cake so big that even Myrnin won't be able to eat it all—and Claire's strangely relieved when he stops talking. Butterflies suddenly rise in her stomach about the fact that she's attending a party which will probably have women Myrnin's been with in the past—something she never realised would bother her—and as Oliver continues talking, she tunes out.
"And I'm going to suppose that you're going to return to his boudoir with him and allow him to ravish you to pay you back for the present Amelie bought—oh, have I gotten your attention now?" Oliver smiles cruelly as Claire's head shoots up at his words, this evidently being his goal.
"What did you say?" she splutters, a blush rising steadily within her cheeks. "Did you just…?" she trails off, unable to finish the sentence.
"…Make an implication that you are going to have sex with the dog, yes I did," Oliver replies, a bored edge creeping into his tone. He stands up and smiles once more. "I know you think you're hiding your feelings well—or perhaps you're just more ignorant than I thought and haven't realised them fully yet, that's always a possibility with you—but it's obvious to everyone else that you both want the other."
"No it isn't!" Claire half-screeches, sitting upright and looking at Oliver again. "Don't lie!"
"If that's the case, ask yourself something," Oliver continues, his tone almost kind. That's when Claire knows that she should be worried; Oliver's never truly kind. "Why did your little boyfriend leave you, if he wasn't cheating on you? We all know it, Claire…it's just you who remains slightly obtuse—and possibly the dog, he's never been very good at picking up on emotions, particularly his own."
Without even a warning, Oliver's gone from the room, and Claire hears the opening and closing of the door to the Glass House; he's gone. She's alone once more, but not really, because as well as the physical delivery Oliver's brought, he's left a greater impact through this question: how does she feel about Myrnin?
Having been told by Oliver to attend the party half an hour before it's due to start, Claire complies with this wish, ensuring the portal is dialled to turn up at six thirty. As she waits for the clock to chime, she looks at herself in the mirror, amazed as usual that Eve can turn her from looking so plain and ordinary into someone almost beautiful.
The dress is floor length and sapphire blue, designed to draw in under her bust and fan out slightly, and Claire knows it's custom made to fit; there are no labels on it. There's a small, shining jewel in the centre of the drawn in section, the straps tied around her neck to leave her back almost entirely bare; the dress reminds Claire slightly of the black equivalent Eve wore to Monica's party…besides the fact that this seems so much more elegant. This is a true ballgown dress, and it helps that Eve put Claire's hair up in a bun with soft curls left to frame her face, because it makes her feel like a princess. It sounds stupid—she's never had dreams of being a princess, even as a little girl—but Claire feels special for the first time in a long, long time.
"Don't stay out all night!" Eve yells as the clock strikes six thirty. "Or if you are, let us know! And have fun!" the stress on the last two words makes Claire remember snippets of conversations from the past three months—since Shane left—about how she never does anything but work any more, but she disagrees. Whilst she's been working with Myrnin, it's been fun, interesting, and they have more than enough breaks to eat pizza or laugh at the latest comedy Myrnin's downloaded illegally from the internet.
She just doesn't tell Eve and Michael that for fear that they'll make the connection they probably already have.
Taking a deep breath, Claire opens the door and takes a step through to transport herself to another part of Morganville, the ballroom of Amelie's house. It's decorated beautifully, with even what Claire presumes are attempts at DNA structures hanging from the ceiling, and as she walks further into the well-lit room, she finds herself entranced by the beauty of the place. She's extremely impressed with Amelie's decorative skills—or, rather, her designing skills.
"You like it?" Amelie's voice startles Claire, causing her to jump as she turns to find the source. A smile is on Amelie's face, not dissimilar to the one on Oliver's yesterday, but Claire is distracted by the outfit Amelie's chosen; it's bright, almost blinding, and makes her look more like a model-slash-filmstar than ever—not that Claire would tell her that. There are some things you don't tell a one thousand year old plus vampire, and that's one of them.
"It's very nice," Claire responds, nodding. "Um, do you know where Myrnin is?"
Amelie's expression fades slightly, as though she's slightly displeased. "It seems that Oliver has had words with him about something, and now he's refusing to attend."
"He can't do that!" Claire replies, shocked at the U-turn in Myrnin's actions; he was so excited. "Shall I go and speak with him?"
"That would be most appreciated, Claire, we cannot, after all, have a party without the person it is intended for." Amelie looks as though she could say more, but Claire has already turned around and is heading back for the portal in the corner, to take her to Myrnin's laboratory.
She arrives within seconds, it having taken her less than a second to imagine the location in her mind which has almost become a second home to her, and Claire's surprised by the state of the laboratory. Whilst she hasn't been here in two days, she wouldn't have expected the place to have gotten quite so messy in her absence—and for Myrnin to be as shoddily dressed as he is.
"What's wrong, Myrnin?" Claire asks quietly as she takes steps towards the man sitting on the sofa, staring into space. His appearance is dirty, unkempt, worse than he's been in a long time. "Why don't you want to come to the party—we're there for you, you know."
As she takes the seat next to him, there's a very slight movement in Myrnin's cheek, his attempt at a smile. "I know, cariad, I know. But Oliver said some things about me, about you, about…about things which I shouldn't burden you with. I'm sorry." He moves, then, his hand lifting to cup Claire's cheek, and as Claire looks into his eyes, he looks weary, spent almost. "Go enjoy the party for me, Claire; I wouldn't want to waste you looking so beautiful."
There's a note of longing in his voice that Claire picks up on, and it sparks something inside of her that Oliver awoke, a feeling that if Myrnin's unhappy, she's unhappy. It sparks the realisation in her mind that a connection like this usually means one of two things: one, that they're related, which Claire very much doubts; two, that they're soulmates or some sort of equivalent, because that sounds a little too corny for Claire to accept, and that the love she feels for him is beyond that of friendship.
"Only if you come with me—not as the person the party's for, but…but as my date." She hesitates as she speaks, not sure whether or not this is more likely to make Myrnin attend or not.
Myrnin's eyes turn and lock on hers as she speaks, his body somehow shifting itself so that he's more upright than before, his hand sliding from her face to grip her hand. "What did you say?" he asks, disbelief in his tone.
"I…I asked…if you want to go…together," Claire whispers, hesitating as she speaks. "Look, it's stupid, it doesn't matter, I'm sorry for asking, I can go alone if you don't want to go with—"
Before she can finish the sentence, Myrnin's lips are upon hers, lighter than air and yet denser than the earth simultaneously, and Claire's eyes close. Their hands are still together, their fingers interlaced with the others, but before she can breathe, their lips are apart. Myrnin rests his forehead against Claire's, breathing very deliberately. "I…I'm sorry if that isn't what you wanted," he murmurs, his voice barely audible yet the Welsh accent shines through. "I just presumed…"
"No," Claire replies instantly, rebutting Myrnin's words. "That's exactly what I wanted, so don't be sorry. It was…great, honestly."
Myrnin smiles. "That's the first time, I think, that my kissing has been described as great," he says, his grip on Claire's hand tightening slightly.
"I think that could be because you've not kissed anyone in the last fifty years or so," she replies, a grin sliding onto her own lips. "Now, before you go get ready for your own birthday party, I have a very important question to ask you." She deliberately makes her tone sound grave, even though inside she feels as though she's able to bounce from Earth to outer space without any aid whatsoever.
Myrnin pulls away, his expression suddenly cautious. "Yes, cariad?" he asks. "It isn't that you don't want to be with me, is it?"
Claire shakes her head and an almost cocky grin slides back onto Myrnin's face. "No, but I'd rather leave the details of whatever we are until after the party, because I for one don't want to listen to Oliver about him being a matchmaker—he came and told me that everyone knows how I feel about you—if that's ok," she starts, before remembering her question. "My question for you, however, is this…how many of the guests have you slept with?"
Myrnin looks shocked at the question—evidently he wasn't expecting it—but after a splutter or two, he replies. "Only two…you won't know one of them, she never comes out of her house," he says, attempting to end it there, but Claire's look makes him continue. "And the other…the other is Amelie."
"Amelie?" Claire repeats, shocked beyond belief. It takes her a few seconds to process this, before a wicked grin appears on her face. "I've changed my mind; I want to dance with you and do everything a couple would do at a party—we can work out the technicalities later, I don't care—and then we're definitely going to have to mention something to Oliver about it, as I doubt he knows."
Myrnin looks puzzled. "You're not outraged and demanding that I don't ever see Amelie again?"
Claire shakes her head. "She's in love with Sam, and anyway, we live in her town, we can't exactly avoid her, can we?" She isn't lying; she doesn't particularly care about Myrnin's past, just as she hopes that he doesn't care about hers. "Anyway, if it means we can see her blush and squirm, that'll make your birthday all the better."
She looks at the clock; they've got another fifteen minutes before they have to arrive at the party. "You should…you should get ready," she says to Myrnin, taking note of his rumpled hair. "You don't look particularly ready to attend your own birthday party."
However, Myrnin too has looked at the clock. "I have fifteen minutes and I doubt it will take me five to dress," he replies, bragging slightly. "And we can be fashionably late anyway…Amelie won't kill me…I hope." As he speaks, he manages to pull Claire in slightly closer without her realising, and she understands immediately what he's suggesting.
"Okay, fine, we can set fire to the hydrogen balloons," she accepts, a smile on her lips; she wants to do this, too.
Myrnin shakes his head, looking slightly guilty. "I…I didn't mean that," he mutters. "Anyway, I've already set them all off, when I was looking for the whiskey. I meant more distracting ourselves in a different way…" He doesn't finish; he merely pulls Claire closer and presses his lips against hers again, equally as light as before.
(They end up being seventeen minutes late for the party, but as soon as Myrnin mentions something about seventeenth century Paris, Amelie's silent and allows them to enjoy the party…which they do.)
yeah, don't favourite without reviewing, or i'll just send angsty snippets of other clyrnin stories through to your PM box non-stop, okay