“My therapist told me to be exactly who I want to be. So I became Jane Porter. Not to say I don’t have my own personality, but if I ever need a little help making a decision I always ask "What would Jane do?”“
Jason’s thinking about Nico while he’s eating lunch. He’s having lasagna, not very Nico-like but it’s Italian, and somehow Jason’s brain has a way of connecting everything back to Nico.
It had been over a year since Nico started working for him, but it somehow felt like it was both just yesterday and a lifetime ago. He doesn’t know much about the younger man, yet imagining his life without him is nearly impossible. Walt is convinced that Nico will always be around and Jason silently prays that he’s right.
Jason’s off from work today, so he had the opportunity to accompany Nico and Walt on the way to school. Watching the pair interact did something to Jason, like butterflies in his stomach had risen up to his chest and were threatening to spill out of his mouth. But, like, not in a gross way.
He’s pulled out of his thoughts by the opening and closing of the front door.
“Honey, I’m home!” Nico jokes from the front hallway. He sets down the large bags he had been carrying to take off his coat.
“Need help?” Jason offers. He doesn’t wait for a reply and grabs the bags to set them on the counter. There’s only two, but they’re both large enough to carry a small child. On the outside of one, a picture of a cartoon giraffe is inviting Jason to come and shop with him.
“I got the gifts for Walt that you were asking for,” Nico states, as if it wasn’t obvious from the heaping bags of toys. “I also got him something from me,” Nico smiles proudly.
“Oh, you didn’t have to get him anything–” Jason starts before Nico cuts him off with an are-you-kidding-me look. “You really think that I’m not giving him anything?” He asks.
Jason shrugs sheepishly. Nico’s pretty keen on gift giving, evident by his insistence on getting him and Walt’s gifts for every single holiday that occurred. Last Halloween he’d bought them all matching ghost socks to wear.
“Okay, so what did you get then?”
Nico grins and grabs the bag on the left. “A football,” he announces, rummaging through the bag.
A confused look crosses Jason’s face. Why would Nico get Walt a football? There weren’t any football teams in the area, not that Jason would let Walt play such a dangerous sport if there were. Besides, he’d probably end up breaking something if he threw it in the house.
“Are you sure Walt would be able to play football? I’m not sure that’s the best choice…” Jason trails off as Nico finally finds what he’s looking for. Said man makes a triumphant noise as he pulls the ball out of the bag.
Except it’s not a football. It’s round. And white. And black.
“What do you mean, Walt would be great at football,” Nico expresses, hugging the ball to his chest.
Jason stares at Nico like he’s grown another head. “You mean soccer?”
Now it’s Nico’s turn to be confused. His confusion doesn’t last long, however, as he remembers what Americans call football. His realization isn’t acceptance, though, and he prepares for the challenge of defending the name of his favorite childhood sport.
“No, I meanfootball.” He places the ball on the island counter gently, but not softly, resulting in a muffled thunk that enforces his point. “Not that American abomination that you call a sport.”
Jason’s brow wrinkles as a playful smirk lands itself on Nico’s lips. Two can play at this game.
“Excuse me, but soccer,” Jason takes the ball from Nico to bring it closer to himself. “Isn’t nearly as popular as football.”
Nico snorts. “Maybe not here, it isn’t, but in every other place in the world, football is way more important.” He reaches across the counter and takes the ball back from Jason to place it in between them.
“It’s a soccer ball,” Jason says, putting both of his palms on the ball, and tugging it towards himself.
“Football,” Nico shoots back, not allowing Jason to take the ball from him, resulting in both of their bodies slightly bent over the counter, faces inching closer together.
“Soccer ball,” Jason grits his teeth and strengthens his grip on the ball, his head moving even closer to Nico’s. They’re only seven inches apart now.
"How the hell do you even play with that egg you call a ‘football’?” Nico asks incredulously. Four inches.
“How the hell do you come to America and insult America’s favorite past time?” Jason asks, mocking Nico’s tone. Their noses are touching.
“Pretty sure that’s baseball,” Nico corrects. He glances at Jason lips and feels his mouth go dry.
Jason shrugs as much as he can in such an awkward position. “That too.” He rests his forehead on Nico’s and stares into the younger man’s eyes. Nico gulps and tries to swallow. There lips are almost touching and he swears he can feel Jason’s breath on his own. If he just leaned in a bit more…
He backs away to clear his throat. “I– er– I’m gonna go put these up. You know, so Walt doesn’t find them. Yeah.”
Jason’s suddenly aware of how close the two had been and awkwardly settles into a more comfortable position. “Yeah, uh, that’s cool. There are some in the– the closet already– presents, I mean, so if you want to… Yeah.” Jason cringes at his lack of ability to speak like a normal human being. Nico just nods and walks toward the back of the apartment, to the closet. His face is a little flushed, although not nearly as red as Jason’s.
Jason breathes out and looks over at his lasagna with disgust. Jason sighs and dumps the leftovers into the disposal. He ambles over to the couch to watch some football– soccer, he corrects himself, in the living room.
(A/N) SORRY FOR POOR WRITING AND BEING AWFUL I LOVE YOU ALL AND THE BIGGEST THANKS TO SAM AND LAINLETO FOR EDITING LITERALLY THIRTY MINUTES AGO THEY ARE ANGELS AND I AM NOT WORTHY