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North Portland 
#1
For Kat


Jaime didn't often leave the premises for lunch. He had often been too busy with surgery and checking in on patients that he voluntarily skipped it. his daughter always made sure he had a large, healthy dinner (or breakfast if he was working the night shift) sometime during the day so he figured he was set. Still, the nurses thought it unusual when he cleared his lunch our the day before, letting them know he had to run an errand and would be back later.

He was wearing a pair of typical light green scrubs and old man tennis shoes when he left the hospital, not wanting to waste time by changing into street clothes. The coffee shop he had told Gia he would meet her at was just a couple of blocks away and walking was the best mode of transportation to get from point A to point B. It was also the healthier option as his daughter would say.

The weather was mild, causing him to grab a light jacket on the way out. He'd probably get hot half way there, but he didn't care. He walked into the doors just a minute late, scanning the coffee shop to see if he could find Gia there. She seemed the type to never be late, but maybe his assessment was completely wrong. Either way, he hopped into the coffee line, not wanting to waste any time.
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#2
 When Jamie had decided to reach out to her, Gia had in all honesty been rather surprised. Not that she was the one to complain. They had met a couple of times previously and he had failed to disappoint her yet. Even so, Gia knew that they weren't close enough to be considered friends and that he most likely had a reason to want to run something by her.
 It stroked her ego, though. The thought of someone "needing" her, or merely relied on her opinion, was one of the reasons she had bothered to agree. The other reason being by far more shallow than she would admit to. But either way, Jamie was right. Gia wasn't the type to arrive late, nor did she ever really bother with being too early. However, she had happened to arrive a few minutes early and had taken the opportunity to step into the restroom real quick. Checking her makeup, washing her hands. Checking her phone on the way out again.
 It was obvious that she saw him before he caught the sight of her, and as Jamie settled into the queue - Gia soon appeared next to him. Not bothered with as much as a glance at those standing behind him in line and the fact that they seemed less pleased by it. "Jamie." She greeted, smiling as she settled in next to him. "Were you so eager to see me that you didn't have time to get changed?" Gia teased as she eyed his attires, eyes twinkling ever so slightly.
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#3
Jaime hadn't waited in line for long when Gia came and stood right next to him. He glanced down at the small witch, wondering what exactly she could do. He didn't ask in that moment, it being too public for him to feel comfortable for that level of conversation. Still, they had only met in passing and although he never considered her a friend per say, she was the first witch he ran into after years living in Portland.

It was more a level of respect seeing as they were more similar than humans.

"It's not necessarily a discussion I'd like to have in a line with people able to overhear," he said quietly, baby blue eyes sparkling. "If you tell me what you want, I can get it and bring it to the table of your choosing." It wasn't really a question, more of an assertive suggestion. He nodded toward the tables that were spaciously spread apart and filling up fast given the lunch hour. Or, if she wanted he'd be happy to sit outside in the front at one of the umbrella tables for two.
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#4
 "That wasn't an answer to my question, darling." Gia continued to tease, her eyes shifting from him and to the menu up on the back wall. The line was moving slowly anyway and she took her time as she contemplated her options. "A double espresso." She finally settled on, turning her attention back to him with a vague smile touching her lips.
 With that, she didn't say anything else before she disappeared from his side again. Having suggested that she'd find them a table, she figured she could play along and do as she was being told. Generally, it wasn't something she approved of but knew that his suggestion had been nothing but harmless. How she chose to interpret it was on her; even her psychiatrist enjoyed pointing that out for her.
 Gia did end up settling for a two-seat table by one of the large windows, but making sure to put some distance between them and their table neighbours. For some privacy, if nothing else. In the end it wouldn't matter whether they were seated inside or not, they'd be surrounded by hungry lunchgoers anyway.
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#5
Of course he wouldn’t answer the question, it was too public of a space. Still, he returned her smile with a rare one of his, though it didn’t touch his eyes. Thankfully, she gave him her order and she was off to find a table. Thankfully, the line wasn’t long and the baristas efficient. He was through the line with her double espresso and his black hazelnut coffee with a touch of cinnamon.

He easily found the dark-haired witch by the window, far from any nosy ears. He set her coffee down in front of her, "Here you go lass," he said as he sat down across from her, taking a sip of his still scalding coffee. At the hospital, he was used to drinking coffee and eating at rapid speed.

Once he set his coffee down on one of the napkins he brought, he got down to business. Neither of them seemed the type to have enough time for idle chit chat. "So, I don’t know about you, but I’ve been running into multiple people like us around the Southside. I’m thinking about gathering everyone for a potential group of sorts. Most of them that I’ve met are young and potentially inexperienced."

Because they were all in their twenties or seemingly early thirties, like herself. In case anyone walked by them or had advanced hearing, Jamie option for using words and phrases that wouldn’t scream “unusual.” "I was hoping to get your opinion on the matter seeing as you were the first person I met after all this time living in Portland."
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#6
 A soft ’thank you’ left her lips as Jamie brought her her coffee. With a smile in place, she resettled on her seat and brought the cup closer to her. Barely had Jamie sat down before he was talking, causing her to raise a perfectly groomed brow at him. A small smile lingered in its place across her lips and she gave him the space to talk, to explain what he had in mind. What truly was the reason for him to reach out to her.
 "So, a daycare?" Gia teased, but she wasn’t wrong - now was she? There was a smirk in place as she spoke and she stirred her coffee, bringing it to her lips as she contemplated a proper response for him. Was she interested? Did she have time? And with baby witches all over the place? "Sounds like you’ve been keeping busy and it’s not really a bad idea." She finally then said, tipping her head ever so slightly to the side as she gave it another thought. Eyeing him closely for a quiet, brief moment.
 "Now, tell me Jamie, what is it that you want from me?" Because certainly it had to be more than to ask for her opinion, right?
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#7
A daycare? Gia must thought little of her generation to think that any of them needed to be coddled. No, more like a safe place for them to come, to learn and for support. Of the ones he met so far, it sounded like none of them had family with them. They were lost. On their own.

"More like a supporting secondary family," he said, void dry, eyelids narrowed as if daring her to correct him. Jaime negotiated little and when he put his mind to something, it was hard for him to sway from it. Determination was what kept him going and he sure as hell wouldn't drop it now. He was hoping it was not a mistake to call Gia for her opinion.

He sat back in his chair, blue eyes glancing toward the table next to him. He brought the cup of coffee to his lips and took a sip, lingering only for a minute to take in the soothing smell before he turned back to her. "Do you know of any witches that would benefit from it? Would you even send them my way? I'd ask if you were interested but you seem the type to lead and not follow. Am I wrong coming up with that assumption?"
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#8
 Aouch. Someone wasn’t in the mood. Gia didn’t let that affect her, though, as she kept her smile in place. Eyes lingering upon the older man before her, "easy now, cowboy." Was all she said, stirring her coffee before she leaned back in her seat and watched him carefully. "Careful with your words, darling. We’re not alone." She pointed out, referring to him using the W-word. Of course it wasn’t that uncommon with social media and people calling themselves witches for no reason, but Gia figured if he wanted to be careful - he had to mind his words.
 Gia wasn’t too impressed, however, in how he made it sound. Of course, Gia was like a tropical storm and not one to easily be tamed. And although the idea of a coven was intriguing and he wasn’t really wrong, she also knew the advantages of being in one.. and especially if one were to be close to the leader in question.
 "So, correct me if I’m wrong; you want my help but I’m not necessarily invited to the party?" Gia wasn’t entirely certain on whether she needed to feel offended or not. But until she got an answer to that, she wasn’t about to answer his inquire in question.
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#9
Of course they weren't alone. Which was why his voice was lowered. Still, Jaime silenced himself and took a deep breath, hidden by the sip of his coffee. He was careful to keep his face neutral knowing that him and Gia were only passing acquaintances and nothing else. She just had an hair about her. An air that told her she wasn't to be messed with and she ran her own business and was the star of her own show. Plus, she had seen her in his part of town so he assumed she might also live there.

He hadn't wanted to offend her. It was the last thing on his mind, but he also didn't want to be run over. It was a fine line he needed to walk. After a moment of thought, he placed his coffee down on the table, the cup already half empty due to his need for caffeine. "You're invited, if you want to be. You strike me as someone who wants to run your own show, not follow some old man like me. Please correct me if I'm wrong," he said, a single corner of his lip tilting up in a teasing smirk. He was trying to release the tension that was quickly building up.
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