The first time Spencer Smith visited Sandwhich Brendon didn't notice him.
The second time Spencer Smith visited Sandwhich Brendon was too busy with his section to give him the attention he deserved. That didn't stop him from talking about it with Keltie for a full hour once the lunch rush eased. They only stopped then because Keltie's shift was over and she had to get to an audition on the other side of town.
"If he keeps coming around you should invite him to that thing at the Cave," she said.
"He's eaten here twice. We don't actually know him, and it would be kind of rude and weird to invite him to anything. Including the show at the Cave. Especially the show at the Cave, because then I'd seem like a groupie or an opportunist or whatever," Brendon said.
"Sometimes you just have to go for things, Brendon," Keltie said. "See you Wednesday?"
"Brendon! Have you been keeping a new boyfriend from us? There's a super attractive guy who requested you by name. When I said you weren't back yet he decided to wait. See? That's him over by the bar," she said.
"Boyfriend? No, I--" Brendon started to say as he turned to look at the bar. He couldn't remember how he was going to finish that sentence. Spencer Smith was at the bar. He was the only person at the bar. "How does he know my name?" Brendon asked.
"Wait, you don't know him?" Marie asked.
"Marie, that's Spencer Smith. The Spencer Smith? Famous producer?"
She shrugged. "Never heard of him. You're OK with taking the table, right? He was pretty insistent."
Brendon swallowed, trying to moisten his suddenly dry mouth. "Uh, yeah. That's fine," he said.
"Hey, how's everything here? Can I get you anything?" he asked.
"No, we're great. Maybe some dessert once Ryan gets back," Spencer said.
"Did he enjoy everything? I've seen you here before, but not with him," Brendon said.
"Ryan? I'm pretty sure he loved it. He can be hard to read, but he would have said something if he hated it," Spencer said. "I don't think I've introduced myself--I'm Spencer. Spencer Smith."
Brendon almost offered his hand before he realized Spencer was just smiling at him. OK, no hand shake. He waved instead, and immediately died inside. "Hey! I'm Brendon, as you know. Brendon Urie. And I, uh, recognized you earlier. I love the work you've done," he said.
They now technically knew each other. Brendon could hear Keltie cheering him on in his head.
"Actually, and sorry if this is super rude or presumptious, but Leaves on Trees has a show Friday night at the Cave and--" Brendon said.
"I'd love to go! But I already have plans." Brendon tried to keep smiling. "Why don't we get dinner Saturday instead? I mean, if you're free," Spencer said.
"Uh, OK," Brendon said.
"Great! Here, give me your phone number and I'll call you tonight to work out the details," Spencer said.
Brendon numbly rattled off his phone number. He was nearly positive Spencer had just asked him on a date. That couldn't be right.
He brought Spencer's check out in a daze when Ryan got back to the table and they decided they didn't want dessert after all. Spencer thanked him and turned to wave at the door when the left. Brendon lifted his hand in reply. As soon as they were out of eyesight he went to find Keltie.
Brendon sputtered and waved his arms incoherently until he got over that mental image enough to reply. "I was just being an opportunistic groupie! I didn't mean to ask him out!" he said.
"Do you not want to go out with him? Because you probably should have told him that earlier," she said.
"No! No, it's not that. But now I can't mention my songs to him without sounding like an asshole," Brendon said, knowing that he was whining and hating it.
"Brendon, just go on the date. He could turn out to be a jerk, and then all your problems would be solved. If he's as amazing as he looks we'll figure it out--later."
"Fine. Will you at least help me figure out what to wear?"
"Of course I will," Keltie said.
When Dallon and Shane asked him to go see Back to the Future at the Rialto that night he quickly accepted. He needed to get out of his apartment.
He only hesitated for a second before putting his phone on silent.
If he hasn't called yet he won't, he told himself, and stabbed at the button.
On his break he added a particularly scathing verse to his new song. Marie thought it was awesome. It was definitely going on his next EP.
When the end of his shift finally came at 2PM he raced back to his apartment to grab his stuff. He wanted as much time to rehearse before the show as possible.
"Nervous?" he asked.
Brendon shrugged. "Not really. Just...surprised, I guess. It's a lot more people than I normally play for."
"That's a good thing. Means your name's getting out there. The boss says you're on in five, by the way," he said, and went to help the next customer. Brendon grabbed his drink and went to get his guitar.
"Thanks, everyone! It's been great to hang out with you tonight. Once again, I'm Brendon Urie. Next up is Leaves on Trees," he said, and stopped while they cheered. "I'll be at the bar if anyone wants to chat or pick up a CD. Enjoy the rest of the show!"
The house lights came back up and he started to pack his things away. It didn't take long. Once he'd loaded everything into his car he headed back to the bar.
Brendon had just ordered a drink when he heard someone clear their throat behind him. He turned around with a smile, expecting a fan.
It was Ryan, and he was with Spencer. Brendon's smile disappeared.
"Good show," Ryan said with a slight nod. It sounded like he was ordering a hit.
"Thanks?" Brendon said. "What are you doing here?" he asked Spencer. "I thought you had plans."
Spencer smiled. It looked painful. "So I guess that answers my question about whether you got my message."
"What message?" he asked. "I've had my phone with me all day, you never--" Brendon remembered silencing his phone for the movie and stopped mid-sentence. "Oh. My phone was off."
"I had promised to see a show with Ryan, and I didn't realize it was the same show until last night. I did call, though," Spencer said. His smile had relaxed and he just looked amused. Brendon, meanwhile, sort of wanted to melt into the ground.
"I guess you caught my set?" he asked, still hoping the answer was no.
"Yeah, you were great. Especially that last song," Spencer said.
Brendon's face was on fire. "I'm sorry, I really thought you hadn't called," he said.
"Hey, it's cool. I understand the sentiment. Anyway, it's sort of reassuring that you actually cared. When you walked on stage I realized you probably didn't mean to ask me on a date at all."
"Well. No. Not at first, not exactly. But I would love to go on a date with you! And not just because you're a producer, I swear. You're on the Smokin' Hot list!" Brendon said. Then he played it back in his head and wanted to hide. "Um. I mean," he started, but stalled out. There was really no way to fix that statement.
He dared a glance up. Spencer was grinning. "Brendon Urie, I would love to go on a date with you. Why don't I pick you up tomorrow at 6, and we'll go someplace nice that doesn't serve sandwiches?"
Brendon smiled despite himself. "That sounds great," he said.
"And over dinner we can talk about getting you into a studio, and, if you're a gentleman, I'll take you back to my place afterward," Spencer said.
"I like this plan," Brendon said.
Keltie was right. Sometimes you just had to go for it.