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The Perfect Seat

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Malik's teeth clenched as he stared at the interloper in his chair. Well, perhaps not exactly his chair, but the one he'd grown accustomed to over the long weeks leading up to finals. It was the only one in the library that had everything right where he needed it to be. The table was on the correct side, an outlet was right behind it, it was in an open enough area that he didn't feel claustrophobic, and it was also relatively near most of the books he needed. It was perfect except for the man sitting in it.

And, sure, in a fit of honesty, he might admit that the man was also kind of trending toward perfect, but so much of that was taken away because he was a chair thief. Obviously, he didn't know it, though, so Malik moved closer, intending to make him aware. "Excuse me," he started out, leading with politeness because that was how things were supposed to work.

"What do you want?" The man glared up at him, telltale bags under his eyes declaring him to be working on some kind of project or paper worth at least a quarter of his grade.

Malik smirked. "Novice. You should have coffee with you. It helps to keep up the illusion that you're actually functioning. There's a coffeehouse inside the student union, by the way." Shit. He was trying to get the guy out of his chair, not to flirt with him.

The man leaned back, his legs spreading wide as he looked Malik over. "What if I don't drink coffee?"

"Then, have a soda. Or tea. Or a Red Bull." He cleared his throat. "I actually came over to ask if I can have that seat. I normally sit there."

There was an impressive raise of one eyebrow. "So, you're like that guy on Big Bang Theory? It's your spot and no one else can use it?"

"No. Not at all. I just..." Malik looked down at himself, realizing that the guy couldn't really have much of a clue why he was asking. He shrugged his bag off of his shoulder and stripped off his jacket, smirking. "You're in the one comfortable spot in the library handy for a one-armed guy."

"Oh, shit." The guy stood up almost immediately, moving his things to the seat across from him where a potted plant always made things difficult for Malik. He cleared his throat afterward, holding up one hand to show that he was missing a finger. "We should start a club."

Malik held out his one good hand to shake the other man's. "I'm Malik, by the way."

"Altaïr." He clutched onto Malik's hands, gripping just a bit tighter than was necessary. "So, this coffee you speak of... Is that the kind of thing you'd like to introduce me to a little later?"

"I could." Malik pulled his bag over to the vacated chair and began to get his things out, intent on getting through at least the first half of the bibliography for his research paper. "Unless you're willing to go get some for me and bring it back and then I will owe you the world's biggest favor."

Shifting in his seat for a moment, Altaïr looked mildly uncomfortable for a moment before seeming to find resolve. "A date. I'll get you coffee and you can owe me a date."

His teeth holding the end of his charging cord while he pulled out his laptop, Malik smiled. As he plugged in the charger, he nodded. "Yeah. Cinnamon latte with two sugars, by the way. That way I know you're an upstanding kind of guy who knows how to treat someone right."

"Are you always this sassy?" Altaïr laughed and put his things into the seat as he stood up.

Malik shrugged. "Probably."

Altaïr smirked. "Good. I'll be back in a few with your coffee." He walked off, his natural gait something of a strut. Malik couldn't help but watch his ass, thinking to himself that that was another seat he wouldn't mind laying claim to.