It was a bit difficult to get this all done on my iPad, and it's just a bit of fluff, but... I hope it's enjoyable anyway!
pairing: Yaotome Hikaru x Inoo Kei
warnings: This is set in an alternate early 1700s France; as such, characters are depicted in arranged marriages. Also, it's likely highly historically inaccurate. Please read with discretion.
word count: 1,040
author's note: This is set in my King and Queen and Joker AU, in a different timeline from Roméo et Juliette (Juniors) and and night will be no more (Sexy Zone)~ It takes place in an alternate 1700s France, where gender and sex aren't linked to societal roles. In other words, it's pretty weird |D; but hopefully also amusing. Written for shiritori @ writetomyheart!
summary: Making small talk while dancing is usually tedious, but with Hikaru, it's effortless.
"Honored, truly, to make your acquaintance," he says as he takes Inoo's hand, pressing a kiss to Inoo's gloved fingers before looking up to give him a toothy grin, a mischievous glint in his eye, as he continues, "May I have this dance?" and Inoo isn't really sure what's happening, but if there's one thing he knows, it's that he wants more than just a single dance with this new partner suddenly thrust upon him. To his defense, he wouldn't even be in this situation if Kota, the youngest and most spoiled son of Lord Yabu and, unfortunately, Inoo's betrothed, hadn't been studiously avoiding him all evening, seemingly trying to do anything to avoid taking the responsibility of being Inoo's escort for the evening. It was intolerable, really, and though Inoo sometimes finds Kota's conversation funny and his company bearable, as he grows older and the day when they will, inevitably, be married grows nearer, he finds himself more and more aggravated at Kota's complete lack of interest in doing anything right when it comes to being Inoo's fiancé. He seems to far prefer goofing off with friends and ogling fencing tournament contestants than taking tea or strolling in the garden with Inoo, and now, the crowning blow, he's been making it clear that he doesn't even care about the fact that Inoo has been left standing off to the side of the dance floor awkwardly all evening while Kota wanders around and does whatever he pleases. It makes Inoo want to overturn his fourth (or is it fifth now?) glass of champagne over Kota's head, but before Kota gets near enough to tempt him, someone else catches his attention instead with a flourishing bow.
"You must be Lady Kei," he says, and Inoo can't help but giggle at the entrance, bringing his folding fan up to cover his mouth as he laughs. He knows already that his sudden companion is Hikaru Yaotome, the youngest son of the Yaotome family and Kota's best friend, but being the swinging star of etiquette that he is, Kota has never really formally introduced them.
And so, "That's right," Inoo responds from behind the lace of his fan, holding it just low enough to show off the decorative beauty mark affixed to his cheek cut in the shape of a pear, to match the wax pears he'd had placed amongst his black curls and the golden pears embroidered in the brocade of his dress. His parents told him his outfits were too much from time to time, but Inoo didn't really care (what was the point of dressing up if it wasn't fun and interesting and a little silly from time to time?), and as he watched Hikaru look him over, he got the feeling that tonight, this particular outfit had been a good choice. And sure enough, then Hikaru was asking him to dance, and Inoo was beginning to feel like maybe his evening was turning around.
"So do you have a particular affinity for pears?" Hikaru asks once they're on the dance floor, lined up amongst the other pairs, "Or are you simply advertising that you're as sweet as you look?"
It's a daring line, daring enough that Inoo can't hold back a laugh, and he raises an eyebrow, because two can play at this game. "Oh no, certainly nothing so immodest," he replies, allowing Hikaru to twirl him around before continuing, "I'm definitely not as sweet as a pear... nor not nearly as bland."
It's Hikaru's turn to laugh, and there's something charming about the honesty of it, despite the fact that laughing so loudly and so open-mouthed isn't strictly the best decorum. Kota has never seemed nearly as charming, nor made Inoo laugh nearly so genuinely, and it's hard not to keep grinning in a distinctly unladylike fashion as Hikaru takes his hand again for the next step. Making small talk while dancing is usually tedious, but with Hikaru, it's effortless, and Inoo is almost surprised when he hears the orchestra draw the piece of music to a close. He wants to keep dancing, but Hikaru gestures towards the drinks table with a tilt of his head, and suddenly, Inoo realizes just how breathless he is, though whether it's due to the dancing or something else entirely is up for debate.
Hikaru hands him a glass of champagne with yet another of those charming toothy grins, and Inoo accepts with a little curtsy, wondering vaguely how he had ever felt annoyed towards Hikaru for taking up so much of Kota's time and attention that should have gone to Inoo. After all, it was Kota's responsibility to be a good fiance, not Hikaru's to force him, and besides, clearly Hikaru and Kota had very little in common. Where Kota is dull, Hikaru is bright and interesting and funny, where Kota is oblivious, Hikaru is smart and witty and aware, where Kota is self-involved, Hikaru is clearly interested in Inoo's life and thoughts and opinions, if the way he asks about them is any indication. Talking to Hikaru is easy; they make the same sorts of jokes, enjoy the same sort of wit, and the time flies as they discuss books, music, art... everything and anything for the rest of the evening. It makes Inoo giddy (or perhaps that's just the champagne talking, probably mostly the champagne talking, right?), and by the end of the night, he's actually disappointed to see Kota coming in his direction, finally, to escort him home.
"Call on me tomorrow?" he asks Hikaru while Kota's away gathering their cloaks, which is perhaps unbecomingly forward, but with the champagne as his excuse and the fear of never speaking to Hikaru again, he's emboldened.
Still, he's a little afraid of how Hikaru might respond, but he only winks, glancing over his shoulder to make sure Kota is still away before touching one of Inoo's curls briefly. "It will be my pleasure," he replies playfully, effortlessly plucking a pear out of Inoo's hair and tucking it inside his jacket before turning away with one final little wave, and Inoo is left to hope that Kota will believe that it's only the champagne making his cheeks such a heady shade of pink.