The man in question raises his eyes from his newspaper. He’s sitting at the table, waiting for Boxcars and Deuce to finish making dinner on this fairly average day in the hideout. Fairly average until now, that is.
Slick is leaning on the frame of his open doorway, left hand in his pocket while the other plays with a knife. The top button of his shirt is open, and he’s giving Droog a look that he didn’t think Slick’s face could possibly make. He sort of wishes he’d stop because it looks stupid. Slick continues.
“Wanna see my cuestick?”
Droog stares. Blinks a few times. The newspaper folds over after a plethora of silent seconds.
“… Are you coming onto me?”
The expression promptly drops off of Slick’s face, and Droog is grateful. “Just play along, fuck.”
Droog isn’t really sure with what he’s supposed to be playing along.
The situation can be summed up with a few misunderstandings. Droog doesn’t know that Slick struck out last night at the jazz club they visited so he’s trying to figure out what he did wrong by testing himself out on his right-hand man, but Slick doesn’t know that Droog doesn’t know, so he in turn doesn’t know that Droog is taking this quite seriously.
Maybe this situation is better, though, since Droog’s opinion of his… ‘performance’ will be very unbiased, and an honest reaction rather than an opinion. But because Droog doesn’t know that Slick doesn’t know that Droog doesn’t know, they both have a very different perspective of what exactly is going on here.
To make it simple, there’s a lot of not knowing happening, and it’s making this moment—and the moments about to take place—very, very awkward.
Droog sets his mouth into a thin line and returns to his paper, paying no attention to the undeterred Crew leader who’s making his way around the table to plant himself beside him. He leans against the surface, facing Droog, and tips the newspaper back again with his knife.
“Why don’t you forget about your Gray Ladies for one day, hm?”
Droog moves nothing but his eyes, giving him an unamused look that sends a few messages, the prominent being stop or I will gut you with your own knife.
Slick is unphased.
“I’m feeling stabby in more ways than one.”
Droog sighs and flicks his newspaper back into place with gusto, the knife falling out of Slick’s grasp and clattering on the floor. He can feel his leader’s determined glare right through the print, but doesn’t acknowledge it.
“How about you make like a Diamond and be my best friend— except— I’m not a girl and— shit, hold on, I’ve got this—”
The taller man groans. He’s never liked puns. Especially bad ones. It’s obvious Slick’s determination is winning over his wit. That is, if he had any wit to begin with.
“Nice suit, I bet it would look better on my floor. Because you’d be naked and I wouldn’t have to look at it. Wait, damnit, not that it’s ugly— fuck—”
Droog rubs at his temples, resisting the urge to punch him.
Luckily, just as he’s about to start another one, Boxcars’s footfalls become audible in the hall, along with Deuce’s voice calling out that dinner is ready. Slick grumbles and buttons his shirt. Droog eyes him as he picks up the knife and takes his seat.
He wonders if the man’s ever actually gotten laid.
A week rolls by, and as it does, this little game of Slick’s seems to become more personal. Droog obviously doesn’t notice the difference, oblivious to his actual intentions, but deep down Slick is slowly looking less and less for an opinion and more and more for a way to crack the taller man’s facade.
His advances happen at random.
In the hideout—
“Let’s put that tie to good use.”
During a heist—
“There’s something Slick between us, and I’m not talking about my name.”
Out on the town—
“So I heard Diamonds are the hardest thing in the world…”
At one point Droog finds a dead rose just outside his door, with a crudely written note attached.
“Your Diamond’s red
My Spade is black
Rhyming is stupid
A true romanticist.
So the week rolls on, and by the end they’re back to where they began—Droog at the table reading a newspaper, Slick watching him as he attempts and undoubtedly fails at being suave.
“Hey Droog, is that a knife in your pocket—”
“Slick, shut up—”
“—because your pants are looking pretty—”
Droog, as calmly as he can, folds his paper up and places it down on the table. He looks at Slick. “If you make one more pun I’m going to—”
“What? Hit me?” The shorter man grins, half-wicked half-silly, and leans forward just a little. “Well, good. I like my diamonds rough.”
Droog stands. The force of it takes Slick by surprise.
“Wh—” He can’t finish because Droog is suddenly pinning him to the table. Well, not pinning him. He’s just standing really, really close and Slick is really, really lost. Droog's hand cups one side of his head while his mouth moves to the other. “Droog, what the fuck—”
But then Droog is whispering. Whispering little… detailed things in a tone Slick is sure he’s never heard glossing over this man’s voice before. It’s sweet nothings and dirty nothings and he swears he hears him say Jack once or twice. He’s not really sure. He’s not really sure of what he himself is doing either, which is bracing himself on the table with his right hand and grabbing onto Droog’s suit with the left for support, and he’s just… listening. He’s also not really sure if it’s from the shock or because he’s hypnotized.
He’s not sure of a lot of things at this particular moment.
Droog pauses abruptly, glances down, and continues with a more coherent phrase.
“So Slick, is that a knife in your pocket, because your pants are looking pretty… sharp.”
And just like that he’s gone. Slick collects himself, but by the time he has Droog is no longer in the room. He stands there, dumbfounded. If there’s anything he’s sure about, it’s this:
He just got served.