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Nonfiction

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Usually, the end of a session in the Animus is a flurry of activity.

Lucy typically checks Desmond's vitals, trying her best to hide her concern for his mental well-being, Rebecca typies furiously, sending the machine into sleep-mode for the night. Shaun usually backs up all the new databases on an external hard drives, tossing a few more inappropriate quips about how they're all out here bloody working while all Desmond's doing is sitting on his ass.

Today, Rebecca isn't typing and Lucy is trying very hard to look anywhere but at subject seventeen. She can feel herself blushing. Shaun is straddling his office chair, slightly open-mouthed.

Desmond coughs awkwardly. "Um…I'm just…I think I'm gonna go take a shower." He wanders out of the room, weaving back and forth, most likely to avoid herds of horses and squads of templars that only he can see. He leaves them with nothing but the low, steady beep of the Animus and the gentle whir of the air conditioning.

"Well," Shaun says after a couple seconds, rubbing his hands together. "I suppose we should call up the universities, then."

Lucy rubs her eyes. "What are you talking about?"

"Scholars have been debating about it for years."

Lucy's patience is running out. "Debating what, Shaun?"

Shaun is grinning, as if he's come across a whole new underground cache of insults to throw Desmond's way. "Whether or not Leonardo da Vinci was in fact celibate. I suppose this answers the question adequately?"

Lucy sighs. "I guess it does."

"A sexually active genius." Shaun spins around in his desk chair. "Take that, Plato."

Rebecca taps a finger against her lips. "I wonder if Desmond can do that…" she says thoughtfully. "I mean, cause wow."

Shaun snorts. "Doubtful. Ezio is a trained assassin, he would be flexible. All Miles does is lie there."

"But there's the bleeding effect…" Rebecca counters.

Lucy is blushing even more, and it's making her irritated. "I can't believe you guys are discussing this."

Rebecca giggles. "Come on, Lucy! It's like free porn. Historical fiction porn."

"Except not really fiction," Shaun adds. "Nonfiction. I hope you recorded that session, Rebecca."

"Of course I recorded it! I record every session, you pervert."

"I'm the pervert? You're the one who was talking about free porn. I want it for purely academic reasons."

"Oh, as if. Like I haven't seen you staring at Desmond's ass." She looks thoughtful again. "So how often do you think Ezio--."

"I'm going to make dinner," Lucy announces, wondering how she's ever going to be able to look at Desmond again without imagining him on his knees in front of one of history's most brilliant men, and marvelling at the lack of professionalism of her colleagues. "And I'm going to trust you two to not harass him with this. He has no control over what the Animus shows us."

"Of course not," Rebecca says.

"Wouldn't dream of it," Shaun adds.

Rebecca hits a few keys on her computer. "It'll be purely for personal use."