Nathan made his way down the Council hallways, his steps echoing. It was late at night and most of the other Crusaders were asleep, which was fine, because it meant Nathan could simply go, get this done, and get out with a very low chance of anyone else seeing him.
Eventually, he made his way to the door he’d been looking for. Knocking politely, Nathan called, “Zander? It’s Nathan. Can I talk to you for a minute, please?”
The door opens a crack. Zander slouches slightly in the doorway, rubbing his eyes. “Nathan? What time is it? Is this too important to wait until morning?”
“About one in the morning. It’s… a personal matter,” Nathan said after a moment of thought. He shifted his weight, tapping his foot nervously. “I was hoping to speak with you in private. I figured now would be a time guaranteed for privacy.”
He opens his door. “C’mon in, I’ll put on some clothes.” He groggily says as he walks into the room towards his closet.
“Oh, gods, were you naked?” Nathan replied, walking in and covering his eyes. “I mean I guess sleeping naked is nice sometimes but good lord.” Shutting the door behind him, Nathan clasped his hands together and rocked on his heels, looking off in the corner as he waited for Zander to get dressed. “So, um… I’m having a bit of a dilemma, really, and I figured you might be just the person I need to talk to. You see, there’s, ah… how do I put this…?’
Nathan tapped his foot, the sound echoing loudly in the closed off space, his face turning hot with embarrassment. “There is… an individual I’m interested in. But I’m not sure what a delicate way to indicate this would be. And, ah, since you’re clearly, well, more… experienced in that area than I am, I was hoping you might, um… be able to give me some tips. On flirting.” He added the last words in a nervous sputter, wanting his point to be absolutely clear but embarrassed to say it.
Zander puts on his pants as he listened to Nathan explain his dilemma. “Alright, I think I could help you.” He pulls over a chair and sits in it backwards. “So, how well do you know the person?”
“Um, well, pretty well…” Nathan wrung his hands together, feeling a nervous sweat form on the back of his neck. “We talk often. Nearly every day, really. He- They, they, they talk to me more than anyone else does. We’re, ah, we’re quite close…”
“Alright, so you two are pretty good friends. What you really need to do is show them you’re interested. Be a little sultry, show some skin. Every time I see you, you’re wearing this get-up. It doesn’t exactly say ‘hey I wanna bang’ but more ‘hey, I wanna do taxes and balance your check book.'”
Nathan shifted in place. “I-I mean… Will they want to see me like that? I don’t exactly look like you…” Nathan swallowed, looking down. “I’m kind of… scrawny and awkward. And freakishly pale. I, y’know, I want them to like me, not be repulsed by me…”
Zander looked down. “Alright, time for plan Zander. Step one: confidence is everything. People will find you more appealing if you are confident. I could look like a literal potato and as long as I was a confident potato I guarantee someone would be into me. Granted, some people would be into me because someone out there must have a potato fetish, but that’s beside the point!” He puts a hand on Nathan’s shoulder. “Looks aren’t everything Nathan, they’re more of a bonus. They’re like the grease to the potatoes, fuck I’m back on potatoes. Shit I am hungry.”
Nathan blinked. “So… I should… be more confident? And learn to cook potatoes?”
Zander’s stomach growled. “It’s one in the morning. We’re moving this conversation to the kitchen or mess hall. I’m making breakfast, I guess” He leads Nathan down to the kitchen and promptly starts making hash browns. “Ya know, it’s weird. Ever since that mission with the Fae I have found I am a really good breakfast chef. Weird, huh?”
“Definitely interesting,” Nathan muttered, his stomach churning. “That’s not the only thing you got from it either.”
He ruffles his wings. “Right, I have wings. I should probably do something about those.” He flips the hash browns in the pan. “SO. Step two to Plan Zander: make a connection. You want to have something in common with a person when you’re talking to them, obviously. So, whatever this person is into, try to talk about it. Show you are interested in their interests. Like,” He looks down at the hash browns. “Apparently I like Potatoes. So if you wanted to seduce me, you’d want to talk to me about my potato interests, I guess.” He puts a garnish leaf to the side of the hash browns and gives the plate to Nathan.
“Lucky for both of us I have no intention on seducing you, then.” Nathan took the plate and poked at the hash brown with a fork, unsure if he could actually trust Zander’s cooking. “But, okay, common interests. So… alch- science! Science, ah, we both like science, yeah…”
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