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flowers and smiles

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''aaand done.''

the needle machine turned off and steven took off his ink-stained gloves. the person he had been tattooing on for the past half hour got up and looked at their tattoo at the mirror. they grinned widely and glee filled their eyes.

''thank you so much! it looks awesome!'' they exclaimed, examining it up closely. they turned around and shook steven's hand, saying 'thank you' one more time.

''you're welcome. don't forget to take care of it so it doesn't come off!'' he reminded, walking over to the front counter. the client payed for the tattoo and waved goodbye before leaving.

it was a pretty simple tattoo, a small ribbon with the name 'clarice' on it, a lily on each side. the person wanted to get their mother's name for mother's day.

steven suddenly froze in place. ''SHIT!'' he whisper-yelled. ''i completely forgot about mother's day!'' he said to himself. he quickly told his co-worker that he was going to get lunch and left the tattoo shop, but really he was going to find a present for his mom.

mrs. lopez isn't the most luxurious person, so even just a small bouquet of her favorite flowers would be enough. steven always tried to get her something that wasn't too simplistic, because he didn't want to seem like an asshole who doesn't care about his mom.

he walked down the street, looking around at the various shops trying to find a present, when he came across a small flower shop that was painted pastel green on the outside. there were flowers of different colours and sizes planted in vases, planter boxes, and tiny gardens, with various watering cans and gardening tools on trays and a medium-sized storage closet. it looked pretty aesthetically pleasing, to say at least.

intrugued, steven walked in, immediately seeing a couple of people in already. they were at the cash register, paying for whatever they got. the inside of the shop was even more aesthetically pleasing, with even more flowers and some indoor plants on shelves and coffee tables. there were two air conditioners providing cool air to the flowers and there was also a small station close to the cash register that had a collection of vases made of various materials.

wow, this person clearly knew what they were doing.

steven started looking around the shelves, trying to find a nice-looking flower. he didn't know much about flowers, honestly. he just thought they were pretty.

after a few minutes of hopelessly looking around, he heard footsteps coming up to him, probably an employee to help him, finally. he turned around and saw a young man around his age, a little taller than him. he was wearing an green apron and had his arms behind his back. the sun perfectly lit up hissoft-looking dark skin and huge smile that could by itself light up his whole world.

and honestly, no flower could compare to this beauty infront of him.

''hi! can i help you, sir?'' he exclaimed, his grin turning to a cute smile.

steven was helpless and at loss with words. ''y-yeah, i was-uh, i was looking for-for um,'' he stuttered, trying to step backwards to make some space between them without breaking anything.

the employee chuckled. ''let me guess- flowers?''

''yeah, haha, flowers, that's right.'' steven said, his cheeks burning red. wayy to be smooth, steven.

''what's the occasion?''

''uh, it's for my mother. you know, it's mothers day and i have nothing to gift her, so.'' steven looked at his feet with slight embarassement. the pretty employee is probably judging him right now, who forgets to give a present to their mother on mother's day?

''oh don't worry, i don't either, haha.'' he laughed, grabbing steven by his shoulder, sending an electrifying feeling down his spine. ''i'm probably gonna give her flowers as well. so you're not the only one.'' he winked, surprising steven, who felt his face burning up even more, if that's possible.

he laughed a bit, more to fill the silence. ''i have no idea what flowers i should give her though. i'm thinking roses?'' he suggested, and the employee shook his head.

''nah, carnations are ideal mother's day flowers. especially pink.'' he said, going to other corner of the shop, steven following behind him. ''carnations in general mean fascination and woman's love,'' he explained, gesturing the tall flowers in a bunch of colours. ''pink means mother's love,'' he continued, pointing at said flowers. ''light red means admiration and dark red means deep love and a woman's affection. white are also popular, meaning pure love and good luck, but are typically used for mothers who are dead, so.'' he explained, steven listening to him carefully and with interest.

he didn't know a lot about flowers and was never really interested in doing so, but hearing all of that coming from the beautiful man's mouth, he could sit and listen for hours on end.

''oh, that's cool!'' was all he managed to say, mentally facepalming himself.

the employee smiled enthusiastically. ''i know right? so imma get you some pink and red, yeah?''

''yeah, sure!'' steven said, and went to cash register so he can let the employee do his job without bothering him.

it took a couple minutes for the employee to get the flowers, so during those minutes tried to regain himself and calm down. he came in this flower shop to find flowers, not to flirt (or, attempt to) with the cute and pretty employee that stole his breath and his heart. he's defenitely not going to try to get his number- or even his name! he doesn't even know his name, this is ridiculous.

his thoughts were interrupted by the employee finishing and coming back to the cash register, wrapping the flowers up and tying a ribbon around them.

''card?'' he questioned, holding up a small white piece of paper.

steven shrugged. ''sure.'' he said and took a pen from the cup next to the stack of cards. he wrote down a nice message, signing his name at the corner.

''steven, huh?'' the employee said, a smirk on his face. ''that's a nice name.''

steven blushed (god, how many times has he blushed today?). ''thank you,'' he paused, looking at his small name tag that he just noticed, which had 'anthony' written on it in cursive. ''...anthony. that's also a nice name.''

anthony smiled and typed up on the cash register steven's total. steven took out his wallet and payed for the boquet, which looked beautiful, all wrapped up.

''here you go,'' anthony said, giving steven his change.

''no, it's okay, keep it.'' steven refused, pushing anthony's hand away. ''you deserve it.''

anthony was flustered, blushing slightly. ''o-oh, thank you! you don't- you don't have to, but if you want to..'' he said, putting the coins back in the register.

''it's no problem.'' steven said. ''thank you so much for the boquet by the way, it looks gorgeous.''

''you're welcome, i could say the same thing about you as well.'' anthony said smoothly, smirking a bit. steven felt his breath hitch at his throat.

this man is going to be the death of me, i swear.

''oh! i almost forgot.'' anthony exclaimed suddenly, ducking down the counter and popping up a second after with a rose in his hand. ''this is for you.''

steven didn't react at first, being really confused. ''w-what?'' he questioned, grabbing the single rose. it was a lavender colour, and it had a card tied to it. ''what's the meaning of this?''

''well,'' anthony said, leaning on the counter with his hands folded to his chest. ''lavender roses mean enchantment and love at first sight. and usually a single lavender rose means 'i am enchanted by you', so, i think you can pretty much understand by now.'' he said shyly, and you could tell that he was blushing.

steven was as red as a tomato, and he could melt right then and there. he's sure he had a dumb smile on his face and his eyes were sparkling.

''yeah, i think i do.'' he chuckled slightly. ''um, i guess i'll see you sometime?'' he asked hopefully.

anthony smiled. ''most defenitely.''

''awesome.'' steven said, stepping backwards and turning around to leave. ''goodbye!''

''bye! happy mother's day!'' anthony exclaimed.

''you too!''

he opened the card which read ''hey, you're pretty cute. call me! ;) xxx-xxx-xxxx''

he sighed happily. he's so hopelessly in love.