My Devious Valentine
Author's Note: Thanks to Arwensong for the inspiration.
“What’s the matter with you, Honeycutt? You look like someone
just shit in your breakfast,” Brian said as he slid into the booth across from
“Fuck you!” Emmett retorted as he stood up and dropped some money on the table. As he attempted to stomp out of the diner, Brian grabbed his arm holding him back.
“Whoa, what is up with you?”
“None of your fucking business. Let go of me,” Emmett ordered trying to wriggle his way out of Brian’s grasp.
“I’ll let go if you promise to sit down and tell me what’s eating your ass.”
“You don’t want to know,” Emmett said with a big sigh.
As Brian felt Emmett stop struggling he released the arm. Emmett plunked himself back in the booth across from Brian. He looked so deflated. Brian couldn’t remember seeing Emmett look so down.
“Tell me,” Brian commanded.
“You’ll say I’m stupid.”
“Probably, but I’ll try to say it inside my head and not aloud,” Brian promised. He could see that Emmett was truly upset.
“Thanks,” Emmett said sarcastically then he remained silent. Brian made a shrug with his shoulders and gestured with his hands, indicating that Emmett should tell him what was going on. Finally, summoning up his courage, Emmett started, “You know what tomorrow is?”
Brian rolled his eyes. “Yeah,” he said disgustedly.
“I knew you wouldn’t understand,” Emmett replied wearily. He started to stand up.
Brian raised his hand to stop him. “Stay put,” he ordered gently pushing Emmett back down into the seat. “I suppose this is the usual ‘I’m alone and everybody else has somebody and I don’t. Poor me. It’s Valentine’s Day’ shit.”
“You are the fucking biggest asshole I have ever met.”
Brian nodded in acknowledgment of the title. “So, you’re sad.”
“I have every right to my feelings. Just because you don’t have any…”
“In spite of that commonly held truth, I do have feelings,” Brian stated.
“Yeah, right,” Emmett said sarcastically.
“I was thinking I might take Justin out for dinner for Valentine’s Day,” Brian said wrinkling his brow. He had been debating if it was too lesbianic to invite Justin on such a date.
“You doing Valentine’s Day?!” Emmett asked with raised eyebrows. “I’ll believe that when I see it. And besides, if you don’t have a reservation at this point, then you might as well forget about going anywhere nice.”
“Unlike you, other people make their romantic plans in advance,” Emmett advised.
“I’m not other people.”
“And don’t we know it!”
Brian stuck out his tongue. “I guess my romantic gesture for Justin is doomed to failure.”
“Now, hang on a minute,” Emmett said as a thought struck. “Since I’m apparently not doing anything for Valentine’s Day, I could come to the loft, cook you two a delicious dinner and then make myself scarce.”
Brian studied his friend. That was a very generous offer. “You’re sure you don’t want to spend the night at Babylon. You might hook up with someone.”
Emmett made a face. “That’s worked so well in the past for me.”
“If you’re sure…”
“I am sure, and I can go to Babylon after I make the dinner. That way you get to clean up.” Brian made a face. “I’m sure you two will want to be alone anyway.” Brian nodded. “Oh, and I do expect to be paid for my culinary skills.”
Brian nodded again. “Of course.”
“Then it’s settled.”
“Yes, settled,” Brian echoed.
“I’ll see you around seven tomorrow.”
“Right,” Brian said as he finally let Emmett leave the diner.
“Something smells good,” Brian said as he came down the steps from the bedroom.
Emmett turned from the stove and looked at his friend. His breath caught in his throat. Brian Kinney really was the most breathtaking man. He was dressed in a soft sweater that looked like cashmere atop tight fitting jeans that showed … everything.
“My, my, my,” Emmett gushed. “You do clean up nicely.”
“Thanks,” Brian chuckled. “I do my best.”
“What time is Justin supposed to be here? My sauce is almost done.”
“I told him eight if he wanted his surprise, so he should be here any second.”
“Good,” Emmett said, turning his sauce to the lowest heat.
“Thanks for doing this, Emmett.”
“My pleasure,” Emmett said genuinely, producing one of his toothy grins.
“Oops, there he is,” Brian said as they heard the gate of the elevator go up. Brian walked quickly to the door, yanking it back as he estimated that Justin had arrived at it.
“Hey,” Justin said. “What’s up?”
“What makes you think something’s up?”
“You meeting me at the door, and not letting me in, and something smells positively divine.”
“That would be your Valentine dinner.”
“It would?” Justin asked in surprise.
Brian nodded. “Emmett helped me out. Come in and say hello before he leaves.”
“Just plating your main course. There’s salad and dessert in the fridge if you want it. Wine’s on the table.”
“Hi, Emmett,” Justin said taking in the beautifully set table and the flowers and wine. “This looks wonderful.”
“Compliments of Mr. Kinney,” Emmett stated, as he set the plates down on the table. “Sit down and enjoy your beef wellington while it’s hot.”
“Um, excuse me,” a voice called from the doorway.
Brian looked up. “Come on in, Joseph,” he said. “Joe kindly agreed to bring me some artwork that he has been working on. I need it for a presentation on Monday. Joe, this is my partner, Justin, and our friend, Emmett.”
Joe nodded at them both. “Thanks for the VIP passes to Babylon. I’m sure I’ll enjoy myself tonight.” He handed a portfolio to Brian.
“No problem. Thanks for playing delivery service,” Brian replied.
“I’m going to Babylon too,” Emmett said. “Will I see you there later?” He batted his eyelashes at Joe, obviously interested.
“If you’re going, why don’t you come with me? I have two passes.”
“Isn’t that lucky,” Justin said with a smile.
“I need to go home to shower and change first,” Emmett said regretfully. He really wanted to go with Joe, but he didn’t want to smell like garlic all night long.
“I have a cab waiting downstairs,” Joe said. “I wouldn’t mind waiting for you. It will be more fun to go with someone.”
Emmett’s face lit up in a glorious smile. “That would be great.” He turned to Brian and Justin. “Happy Valentine’s Day.” He kissed each of their cheeks and Brian even let him. “Thanks for everything. Oh, and eat that before it gets cold,” Emmett called as he exited the loft pulling the door closed behind him.
“I think it worked,” Justin said.
“Yeah, you may be right that those two are meant for each other.”
“I wonder what Emmett will say when he finds out Joe is from Mississippi.”
“He’ll figure out what we did,” Brian chuckled. “Trust you to get to know my new graphic artist, and decide that he would be perfect for Emmett.”
“It’s the least I could do for Valentine’s Day.”
“And we get a great meal out of it too,” Brian said holding out Justin’s chair for him.
Justin sat waiting for Brian to take his own seat. Brian picked up his wine glass and toasted, “To my handsome partner and devious matchmaker.”
Justin grinned. “My plan earned me a romantic dinner with you, didn’t it?” He smiled sweetly at Brian. “So I accept your compliment of ‘devious’ with pride.”
Brian merely shook his head before taking a sip of the wine and digging into the beef wellington. Maybe Valentine’s Day wasn’t such a bad non-holiday after all.
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