The alley is crawling with glittering scorpions. They scuttle over each other, sapphire legs clicking against the pavement like rain, and Minghao knows this is Jeonghan’s doing. Ever since the wizard moved in a few weeks ago, magical creatures and enchanted objects have been all over the neighborhood. Tonight’s scorpions are new, though, precious gems being a little difficult to get in this quantity. Minghao sighs. This kind of display is so over the top he’s tired just looking at it, and all he wants is to get home and sleep.
One of the scorpions crawls onto Minghao’s boot, clinging onto his shoe lace when he tries to kick it away.
“Rude,” a voice says.
Minghao looks up. From the shadows of a fire escape, Jeonghan steps into the moonlight, which catches on the threads of silver on his jacket. Otherwise, he wears all black, and Minghao rolls his eyes.
“Could you be more dramatic?”
“I could,” Jeonghan replies with a grin, and his voice, although soft, carries over the sounds of nearby traffic. He steps forward, and the scorpions clear a path for him to walk right up to Minghao.
“Do you want to see how dramatic I can be?” Jeonghan asks, raising his hand to draw a line in front of him and pull a rose out of the air. The deep red petals are dipped in gold, and the thorns on the stem shimmer with a dusting of more gold. Jeonghan offers the rose to Minghao, who eyes him for nearly a full minute before accepting the flower.
“If this is your way of asking me out—”
“What gave it away,” Jeonghan says drily.
Minghao narrows his eyes, and Jeonghan laughs, voice ringing like silver bells in the dark alley.
“Sorry, sorry. Please,” he says, gesturing graciously for Minghao to continue.
“You could’ve just knocked on my door or something,” Minghao says with a sigh. “You literally live three doors down from me. Blocking the side entrance to the building is just inconvenient for everyone.”
“But then where would the effect be?” Jeonghan pouts. “Also, you haven’t said whether you’d go out with me yet.”
“I think you should let me go home and take a nap first,” Minghao says wryly. “It’s been a long day, and I haven’t even had dinner yet.”
“I could take you to dinner!” Jeonghan’s whole face lights up, and Minghao pretends he doesn’t see the city lights reflected like stars in Jeonghan’s eyes.
“I just want to chill for tonight,” he says quietly, twirling the rose slowly.
“I can be chill,” Jeonghan says quickly. Minghao laughs softly.
“I’m sure you can,” he says, glancing pointedly at the sapphire scorpions still meandering around the edges of the alley.
“You said you liked sapphires!” Jeonghan flips his hair indignantly. Minghao isn’t distracted by how the light glances off the newly blond hair at all.
“Well yes but this isn’t exactly the context in which I was thinking.”
Jeonghan waves his hand with a sigh, and the scorpions disappear. “Listen, Minghao, I think you should go on a date with me. You think you should go on a date with me. Just go on a date with me.”
Jeonghan’s pouting a little, but for once it doesn’t look like he’s doing it on purpose. Minghao sputters. “What do you mean, I think I should go on a date with you?”
“You mentioned it last week when you and Junhui got back drunk, and I ran into you in the elevator,” Jeonghan says smugly. “What did you say again? ‘Jeonghannie, you’re so handsome, I can’t believe someone so beautiful as you would ask me out’?”
“That sentence has literally never left my mouth,” Minghao says with noticeable relief.
“Not yet,” Jeonghan says with a grin. “But you did say that it was annoying how charming I am, and that’s enough for me.”
Minghao flushes, and Jeonghan laughs. “There’s nothing to be embarrassed about, I am pretty charming. But in any case, I expect you to be ready for dinner Saturday at 7pm. Wear that nice blue jacket that brings out your eyes, yeah?”
Minghao opens his mouth to say something, but no words come out. Jeonghan’s grin widens.
“Well it seems my job here is done. Goodnight, handsome,” he says, tapping Minghao’s nose before turning on his heel and vanishing.
Minghao exhales through his nose and looks down at the rose still in his hands. As he watches the gold glint in the thin moonlight, he wonders if he needs to put it in water.
Your turn, beltenebra :)