“Mate,” Niall says, spreading his wings and letting the breeze thread through his feathers like fingertips, “the Professor’s going to kill you if you set fire to the jet again.”
Zayn rolls his eyes and lights his cigarette with a flick of his fingers. “I didn’t set fire to the jet,” he says. “Stop exaggerating.”
“There were definite burn marks,” Niall says, pushing himself a few inches off the ground and feeling the pull of his muscles. He’s been stuck in the training room all day letting Matt put him through his paces, and he hurts, doesn’t like being trapped indoors at the best of times but Matt’s been in a bad mood ever since Aiden left for the California mission and Niall’s not sure he’s ever been so tired.
“Where are the others?” Zayn asks, stretching out in the grass, eyes closed, and Niall blinks to stop himself staring.
“In Liam’s room,” he says. “I’d tell you what they’re doing but I don’t want to think about it.”
Zayn laughs, and Niall’s glad his eyes are closed so he can’t see his blush. “As long as they’re more subtle about it than Aiden and Matt,” Zayn says. “You’d think the ability to teleport would be handy, but Aiden always chooses the worst places at the worst times.”
“I think he does it on purpose,” Niall says, letting his feet touch the ground again.
Zayn opens one eye to look at him conspiratorially. “Me too,” he says, and Niall grins, crossing his legs and sitting just a little closer than necessary.
Most of the team are on mission or with Storm in the capital, and the mansion’s been pleasantly calm, just a few of them around to catch up on assignments and make the most of one on one training. Zayn and Harry and Liam and Louis and Niall, they’re never split up though, so it’s been nice to spend the week just hanging out without the threat of world destruction dangling over their heads.
It’s even nicer to get some time alone with Zayn, though, and Niall’s never been more glad for this thing the other three have started up.
They sit in comfortable silence, Niall’s wings taking on a life of their own as they make the most of the chance to spread out and flames dancing between Zayn’s fingertips, and Niall knows that it’s dangerous to be this close but he’s never been afraid of Zayn’s mutation. Never even thought to be.
One day he’s going to do something stupid, he knows he is, but for now he keeps his mouth shut and enjoys just being there, waiting for the day he lets this beautiful boy set him on fire.