Like Real People Do - Chapter 19 - xiaq - Check Please! (Webcomic) [Archive of Our Own]
An Archive of Our Own, a project of the Organization for Transformative Works
Kent sits next to Jeff on the plane for the flight home early the next morning.
“You look terrible,” Jeff tells him pleasantly. “You want to call Eli and flirt for a few minutes to cheer yourself up?”
“It’s five AM,” Kent grouses. “Even with the time difference, he would kill me.”
He thinks, a little anxiously, about the degree of slur in Eli’s speech the night before.
“I hope he’s not hungover today,” Kent says, more to himself than Jeff.
Jeff makes a disgusted noise.
“Also,” Kent says, lowering his voice, “I don’t flirt with him. There’s no flirting.”
Jeff wordlessly opens his photo reel and hands over his phone.
Kent gets three pictures in and flushes.
“How do you keep taking these without me noticing?”
“Flirting,” Jeff repeats.
“Yeah,” Kent admits, continuing to scroll. “Maybe a little.”
“You’re picking him up at the airport tonight, right?”
“You want company?”
Kent tries to figure out a nice way to say no and Jeff laughs.
“Never mind. I can tell when I’m not wanted.”
“It’s fine. I understand.”
Kent hands back Jeff’s phone and pulls out his own. Eli will probably wake up before they touch down in Vegas so he composes a basic “good morning” text and follows it with a see you tonight!!
“Do you think two exclamation marks are excessive?” he asks.
“Oh yeah,” Jeff says sagely, “He’ll for sure know you’re in love with him, now.”
Kent shoves an elbow into Jeff’s side.
“I don’t know why I’m friends with you.”
“Because no one else will put up with your shit.”
“True,” Kent admits, and that feels a little too honest for comfort.
Jeff slings an arm around him. “I have a gift for you,” he says.
“Permission to sleep on my shoulder for the duration of this flight.”
“How is that different from any other flight?”
“I have another gift for you.”
“An invitation to shut the hell up.”
“Thanks,” Kent says seriously. “I hate it.”
He leans his temple against Jeff’s shoulder anyway.
Jeff grumbles something about ungrateful children but doesn’t push him away.