Your nose was pressed against the pages of an old worn out book. Your eyes flew across the pages in rapt interest as the character made an impassioned speech. You nearly squealed in delight as he spoke a favorite line. You folded the book on the cafe table trying to maintain some modicum of composure. Fortunately, the barista called out your order. You pushed away from your table weaving through the tables towards the counter. You reached for the cup brushing hands with someone else. You glanced over at the interruption in confusion. Your eyes met with a wide plaid chest. You glanced back at the cup. Your order was checked off in the boxes on the side. You pulled your hand back struggling with the social awkwardness that had just presented itself.
“Oh, sorry.” The man said revealing an incredibly bright embarrassed smile. “Was this yours?”
You nodded overwhelmed by how beautiful his smile was. You wondered if he was some sort of model or actor, but why would someone like that be somewhere like this? He awkwardly handed the cup to you. He nodded to the black ink scrawled on the side.
“Sam, huh?” His lips twitched back into a shy smile. “Nice name.”
“O-oh… actually, I accidently told the barista the wrong name.” You blushed bringing the cup closer to your body like a shield.
His amused gaze became imploring. “Accidently?”
“Y-yeah. I was reading and I accidently read the name out of my book.” You resisted squirming under his gaze trying hard to meet his eyes. They were beautiful easily meeting yours easily, drawing you to them.
You hiked a thumb over your shoulder towards your table wondering why he chose to continue speaking to you. He followed your gesture tilting his head. You averted your eyes to the plastic lid concealing your drink. When you looked back up at him he was accepting his drink from the barista, a pretty brunette with flawless skin and a cheerful smile. You wavered on your feet debating whether you should return to your table now, especially since the barista’s smile turned into something more inviting. You took a tentative step back, but the man turned back to you after simply nodding a thanks to the barista. He met your eyes again just as attentive as before.
“You know, the only Sam I can think of off the top of my head is from Lord of the Rings.” He continued thoughtfully. Despite the anxiety, you immediately brightened. He chuckled a warm laugh that mirrored the warmth of the coffee in your hands. “Is that what you’re reading?”
You couldn’t help the smile that twisted your lips. You nodded. “The Return of the King, I’m rereading it.”
“I haven’t read that in so long! I was in… high school.” He admitted. “Although, The Two Towers was my favorite.”
Your nose scrunched up automatically. “Return of the King is hands down the best.”
Your mouth dropped open, all anxieties vanishing for a moment. “Are you kidding? The best battles happen in the last book! And the character development actually hits its apex!”
He shot you a look with equal parts teasing disagreement and amusement. “Oh c’mon, but Lothlorien and, okay, and Treebeard?”
“You must have read it a long time ago.” You grinned. “Treebeard’s best is in The Two Towers.”
His shy smile broke into a beautiful grin that lit up the room. Immediately, you shoulders relaxed and you felt comfortable. His gaze dropped to his coffee. You looked around, confidence budding within.
“Are you waiting for someone?”
“Uh, yeah, actually.” You shoulders fell. “For my brother.”
“Oh, then…” You trailed off biting your lip.
“He’s late though,” He cast you a hopeful look from beneath his knitted brows. “Do you mind if I wait with you?”
“Sure.” You tried to hide your excitement. “But only if we can keep talking about Lord of the RIngs.”
Sam jealous of Sebastian hanging out with the MC so often, please! Both are romantically interested in the MC, but the MC is actually just interested in Sam.
“Hey! Wait, where are you going?” Sam called to the farmer as they came into view down the cobbled path.
“Huh? Oh, hey Sam!” They waved to him happily as he approached. “I was just heading to Sebastian’s house. He was gonna show me something about coding.”
“Oh,” Sam’s face darkened a bit. “Are you sure you wouldn’t rather hang out with me? We can go back to my place and hang out while I play guitar. I know how much you like when I play for you.” He smiled in an almost mischievous way.
“Sorry, but I don’t really think Sebastian would like it if I stood him up.”
“Hm,” Sam grumbled and crossed his arms over his chest.
“What?” They turned fully to them, concerned more than annoyed but it was still there.
“Nothing. Go ahead and go have fun with him.” Sam turned and walked off, ignoring them no matter how much they called to him.
“Geez, Sam, take it easy! You’re gonna scratch up the table.” Sam had just missed another shot to hit the cueball, jabbing the end of his stick at the fuzzy covering on the pool table in Gus’ saloon.
He growled and rolled his eyes. “Just shut up and let me focus on beating you.” He snapped back at Seabstian then took another shot, hitting the cueball this time but completely missing his opportunity to sink a ball.
“Are you okay, Sam?” Abigail asked, setting down her Joja Cola. “That’s the fourth time you’ve missed. I mean, you might not be great at pool but even you usually do better than that.”
“I’m fine.” He jabbed the stick towards Sebastian. “I’m just having an off day.”
“Newsflash, you’ve been having an off week. Seriously,” Sebastian leaned over the table and began to line up his shot, “What’s wrong with you?”
“I don’t wanna talk about it.” Sam crossed his arms and looked angrily at one of the walls to avoid their eyes.
Sebastian took his shot and sunk two balls with a loud clack.
Sam rolled his eyes and took hold of the stick Sebastian held out to him, but Sebastian didn’t release it. Instead, he pulled Sam forward so they were face to face, only a couple inches apart.
“What’s your problem?” Sebastian asked, but it sounded much more like a stern statement.
“I don’t have a problem, alright?” Sam tried to pry the stick back from Sebastian but his fingers were strong from all the typing he did.
“Yes you do, and I need to know what it is, because you only act this way when I’m around.”
“Uh, guys,” Abigail pushed back from the wall she was leaning against and took a step towards them.
“Stay out of this.” Sebastian said coolly, his eyes never leaving Sam’s.
Abigail opened her mouth to say something, but closed it again and just watched nervously.
“I don’t like you hanging out with the farmer so much, alright?” He pushed Sebastian back hard enough by the pool stick that he had to take a stabilizing step. “I’ve seen the way you look at them and how you talk to them, but they don’t want you, okay? They want me. So stop trying to be with them all the time.”
Sebastian sighed and pinched the bridge of his nose like he was getting a headache. “Just because I like them doesn’t mean we can’t hang out. You think I have no self control? I know they like you and I’m not going to screw that up just because I like them.”
Abigail’s eyes darted between them in the long-stretching silence that filled the little game room of the saloon.
“Stop being dumb, okay?” Sebastian finally said with a mock grin and a quirked eyebrow.
“Just as soon as you stop being an idiot.” Sam grinned back and playfully punched Sebastian on the shoulder, which he returned even more roughly. They both ended up laughing and rubbing their arms.
What did I just witness…, Abigail thought and leaned back against the wall. Boys are so weird.