Jenkins sprays them with the new and improved love potion antidote and, thankfully, it works this time. Flynn stumbles to his feet, rubbing at his wrists and nearly falling over himself with his apologies on how he didn’t mean to compliment Jacob so much - “no, wait, that’s not what I meant, you really do have nice eyes!” - until Jenkins suggests that maybe they just never mention this incident again, and particularly not to Ezekiel, who’s already filmed enough blackmail from them declaring their everlasting love for Cindy to last the next month.
“Right!” Flynn exclaims, still looking remarkably flustered. “We just - yes, let’s not talk about this. Deal?”
Jake immediately takes the hand that’s been offered to him and gives it a firm shake. “Deal.”
He decides not to mention the butterflies still swirling around his stomach that should have been dispatched by now.
Jake has difficulty getting to sleep that night.
He twists from side to side, trying to get comfortable. When that doesn’t work, he kicks the sheets off and lies wrong way up on his bed, feet propped up on pillows and his head dangling over the edge. It's a habit he got into as a kid and never quite got rid of, on the nights when he has too much racing through his mind to even consider sleep. Being upside down sends the blood rushing to his head so he doesn’t have to think. He definitely won’t think about the way Flynn’s eyes lit up on seeing Jake after that first failed antidote. He clenches his right hand into a fist and back, trying to chase away the phantom ache of Flynn’s hand in his.
It’s not that Flynn’s a guy and Jake's suffering through a mid-life gay panic. Jake came to that particular realisation years ago.
What's worrying Jake is that Jenkins’ antidote clearly hasn’t done what it was meant to, because, well. He can't stop thinking about Flynn.
Flynn, who’s a bigger mess than the other Librarians combined and yet is the smartest guy Jake’s ever met. Flynn, who has a hundred ways of getting into trouble and somehow always manages to save the day. Flynn, who loves the Library in all the ways Jake does, whose passion for learning and history and art lights him up from the inside out like a live-wire. It’s a passion that makes his eyes shine and his hands flail and his tongue trip over itself to convey how very important learning and history and art were and are and can be and -
Jake shoves his hand into his mouth and bites down to stop himself from groaning far too loudly.
Stop, he thinks at his own thoughts, just stop.
It's the potion, he tells himself. The antidote failed somehow. It must have.
Just because he can't stop thinking about how Flynn looked at him while they were under the first antidote's influence, all bright and intense and intrigued, like Jake was a piece of history he wanted to dive right in and explore, like Jake was a verse of Ancient Greek poetry that had only just been unearthed in the cellar of some dusty museum where it had lain lost and dormant for years, doesn't meant that Jake suddenly now suffers genuine feelings for him. After all, Flynn was only looking at him like-
Like the way Jake is used to seeing Flynn look at Eve.
Because Flynn is very much in love with Eve, even if sometimes Jake doesn’t understand what it is that keeps them together, why Flynn keeps running and why Eve keeps allowing him to come back.
His childhood habit isn't helping tonight. He shifts on the bed, pulls his head back up onto the mattress and pointedly ignores the dull ache in his chest, focusing instead on how much Flynn loves Eve, how much Eve loves Flynn. He’ll ask Jenkins to whip up another antidote tomorrow and everything will go back to normal.
When he does fall asleep, he dreams of Florence. Terracotta tiles and sunkissed cobblestones, a man with a mess of brown hair and a tweed waistcoat slipping his hand into Jake’s and dragging him over to the Eiffel Tower. Jake twirls his companion in the elevator to the second level and they eagerly discuss how much they can’t wait to meet Michelangelo, now he’s been reanimated and currently works as a curator at the Uffizi Gallery.
When Jake wakes, he’s more annoyed at his subconscious for getting the location of the Eiffel Tower wrong.
That’s what he keeps telling himself, anyway.