The touch on his arm was already unexpected, but when her hand moved up to cup his cheek Philip couldn’t help but flinch back. Noone had touched him like that in a long time. Not since he was a child and his mother’s gentle caresses soothed him through his father’s drunken yelling. It had been rare before the Entity took him, and nonexistent after, and yet… suddenly her hand was on his cheek; warm and inviting, and the Wraith couldn’t help but yearn for that feeling. This was different from Max’s roughhousing or Quentin’s laidback presence, and after a moment of hesitation he pressed his cheek softly into her hand.
Through the entirety of the interaction he watched her curiously; wide, hollow eyes uncertain of her intentions, but eating up any information she gave him. After she spoke he simply nodded against her hand and grunted a hesitant response, “Dunno ‘bout belongin’... But ya seem kind. Thank you.” Again, he paused, struggling to find the words he was looking for. He wasn’t sure why, but scaring her away from this interaction was the last thing he wanted to do, and her resolve seemed so fragile.
Leaning closer to give her a better angle to continue her unwarranted affection, Philip hoped it was invitation enough and muttered a quick apology, “... ‘m sorry if I upset ya…”
Amanda seemed to tense up at Wraith's reaction. She could feel his silent yearning and it connected with something that she hid deep down in her soul. A breath escaped her lips silently. She seemed to be just as cautious about the interaction as Wraith was. After a long moment she rubbed her thumb against his harsh skin. Her dark eyes were wide with curiosity and caution. Suddenly, when he spoke again, she snapped out of her trance. She blinked at his words, listening closely and raising an eyebrow in consideration. She didn't understand his way of thinking or his thoughts. He was so much softer than she could've understood.
For a moment she considered her attitude and seemed to calm her temperament. "You didn't upset me." She lied, but she wasn't upset anymore. So, what did it matter? Amanda leaned up, cupping his face with both of her hands now. A small smile tugged at her lips now. It was genuine and almost seemed happy. "I think you could belong somewhere if you really wanted to. You're kind and gentle. I'm cruel and merciless. You have a much better chance than I do." She chuckled, but it wasn't funny. In fact, it was quite somber even.
This wasn't what Amanda had expected to happen. She thought she would chase away whoever had wandered into her home. For a moment she even wondered why she couldn't be so gentle with others.
Philip watched her silently as she processed what he’d said-- He could almost see the wheels churning in her mind as the bewildered look on her face shifted from one thought to the next. For a moment the lull calmed him. The feeling of her thumb against his cheek was a soft reminder of the human in him and the simple physical contact was enough to slow his own racing thoughts. Her touch had been unexpected, but not unwanted, and in the moment the Wraith yearned for more.
And he was lucky enough to get it. The warmth of her other hand only added to his comfort and all Philip wanted to do was melt into it, but something in him stiffened at the contact. He wasn’t used to any sort of touching, let alone hands as gentle as hers.
When Amanda spoke again he listened as intently as he could and hummed a simple response, “Dunno ‘bout that either…. But ‘m glad ya aren’t upset…” Shifting awkwardly in an attempt to ease the ache in his back from leaning down for so long, Philip dropped his hands to rest them firmly against his knees. “... Think yer too harsh on yerself…” he added, “Seem gentle enough tah me. Kind too…”