Hay-on-Wye is a small market town in Powys, Wales known as “ The town of bookshops.”
It’s got some of the most charming bookshops in the world and it’s the world’s largest second-hand and antiquarian book centre.
SO @mariuspondmercy and I were talking about how there are so few Les Mis coffee shop AU’s where BOTHcharacters are the coffee shop employees, and of course that needed to be rectified immediately:
Enjolras and Grantaire both work for Café Chaton- which unbeknownst to them is actually a front for Patron Minette, managed of course by Montparnasse
Enjolras is just glad to be working for a free trade small business as opposed to a large chain place, and he was happy to apply when Eponine said her friend needed an extra set of hands. Whereas Grantaire is just happy to work for a place with a chill boss who doesn’t care about his tattoos being visible or if he sketches during quiet intervals
They bond over shitty customers and a mutual dislike for the godawful playlist that plays constantly that they somehow can’t turn off
The tiny amount of the space they have behind the counter definitely helps create some closeness
One night when they close up, Enjolras notices that Grantaire’s a little down and makes him a special drink that consists of way too much caramel, cinnamon and whipped cream. He doesn’t complain when he has to clean out the coffee machine again
They sit on the counter in the dark, closed up store. Upside down chairs on top of the tables surrounding them, talking about loads of stuff that don’t involve customer service or complaints or that one guy that would not stop yelling at Grantaire earlier in the day
The radio they can’t control plays a song they both despise. But they’re the only ones there and it’s kind of funny how annoyed they are that they know the lyrics off by heart. They’re only slow dancing to the damn thing because it’s funny and ironic…Except Enjolras is very close to Grantaire and his hands are holding onto his waist quite tightly and the way he’s looking at him isn’t funny at all
And when they’re both home in their respective apartments that night, maybe the song doesn’t sound so bad anymore, and maybe they’ve both secretly added it to their personal playlists and can’t stop listening to it on repeat
They next few shifts something has definitely changed and the energy between them is just intense. The tiny space behind the counter seems to accentuate the amount of times they accidentally bump into each other
They’re being overly polite to each other, not wanting to address the vibe. When Enjolras goes to grab more coffee beans, Grantaire insists on helping. And oh no- the storage cupboard door that needs to be propped open by a bucket has accidentally swung shut, and Montparnasse never got around to hiring that guy to fix the stuck door handle.
And now they’re in the storage room, too close together, noses smushed uncomfortably and wait, is Enjolras’ hand on Grantaire’s hip??? Is his thumb tracing circles?? No it can’t be.
They finally kiss! It’s trepid and uncertain at first but then they can’t break away!
Meanwhile Montparnasse has been #done with these two for weeks now. He makes better lattes than those assholes anyway. So if he might have ‘accidentally’ knocked the bucket by the door out of the way to give himself an hours peace then so be it
When the cafe rush comes in, Montparnasse reluctantly opens the storage door for them catching them in a less than professional situation. He merely rolls his eyes and says“finally, can the weird tension cease now? Get yourselves presentable and fix your hair!“