Ziva thrived in her career; her ideas earned her recognition both within the company and the industry. She had shown innovative concepts in her most recent program; the development of the software was groundbreaking in online gaming development. Protecting players whilst online from hackers, Ziva knew that her advancement would be a temporary success, as the industry changed continuously, nonetheless the award and promotion to Development Captain, a significant step to help her stay on top of the trend. The company encouraged her to remain, to apply for roles with their e-sports department, but gaming was her brother’s passion, she wanted her skills to have practical applications.
It was rare Rylan celebrated his sister’s success; it surprised her to get a call for lunch. Rylan breezed his congratulations, jealousy tinged his voice for her award. His nominated book proved fruitless, except for making him a local celebrity, small fish compared to his ambitions. Ziva praised this, she had bought the book but had to admit it was unread due to her busy social life and attempted cat rescue plans. Rolling his eyes, Rylan switched over to the real reason he had called and invited her to the wedding. A marriage, he had concerns, how could he provide for Emilie or their children and he worried he would fail, that his work would take all his time or he would leave them like Jose did. Strange seeing Rylan anxious in this way, Ziva convinced herself, he thought the world owed him something. Smiling, she polished off her lunch, they had to believe life with Emilie would be different. He shrugged, the one thing Rylan needed to remember, Ziva assured, was that he and Emilie loved each other enough to take the risk on spending the rest of their lives together.
Ziva cringed, her overexcitement at seeing Elizabeth again and meeting the girls in San Myshuno at the Spice Market; her best friend Laura assured everyone it was the best Karaoke bar around. While her friends acquainted themselves with the song list, Ziva watched Elizabeth take to the stage, she carried the tune well, lacking the drunk courage her friends were knocking back shots. She flinched as the book and request paper found its way to her, nods of encouragement followed. Aria had been the musical talent in their family, her voice melodic, while Ziva made the cats of Brindleton Bay sound like an angelic chorus. Elizabeth leant on the bar, her hands shaking as she drank her wine with haste, ordering another round for her and a hovering Ziva.
Alcohol can boost confidence, daring the shyest of singers or hopeful lovers to take a chance, Ziva was the latter, and perched near Elizabeth the awkward flirt got her friends attention. Rather than a flat refusal or hostile rejection, Elizabeth expressed her genuine flattered response at Ziva’s interest. Her sweet smile relaxed Ziva despite her discomfort, Elizabeth put her at ease, hoping this would cement their friendship. They joined the rest of the group, cheering support at their friend’s efforts. Laura had been Ziva’s best friend since school, her mood soured by the embrace Elizabeth and Ziva shared by the bar. Ziva brushed it off, wanting to forget the embarrassing conversation, wishing the world had swallowed her whole as the memory embarrassed her.