Virgil spent a lot of time on his own now. It wasn’t that he didn’t like Patton or Logan, in fact they were practically family (Pat more-so than than Logan, whom he’d only met a couple years ago through Patton), so he loved them dearly. It was just... Having someone around all the time was overwhelming, sometimes. Patton was almost always home when Virgil was awake (he’d be the first to admit his sleeping schedule was... horrendous), and when he wasn’t, Logan was usually there. Virgil could cut off his thumb and still count on that one hand the number of times he’s been completely alone in Patton’s- in their apartment.
Logan didn’t live there, per se. He had his own place, but he spent most of his time outside of work at Patton
and Virgil’s apartment. Virgil is pretty sure Logan has a crush on Patton, but Patton hasn’t said anything so he figures it’s not his business anyways. So he’d decided to give them some time to themselves and dipped out of the apartment shortly after Logan stopped in. Currently, he was just wandering aimlessly through town; he didn’t care if he got lost. Virgil stopped in front of a small coffee shop and went inside.
The interior is plenty cozy, with warm redwood furniture and soft creme-colored walls. Virgil glances around for a moment before walking up to the counter, glancing at the sunny employee’s smile before looking down at his chest. He didn’t know how to feel about people smiling at him. “Hello there, dark prince. What will you be having this fine afternoon?” Virgil raises an eyebrow at the nickname and looks over the menu before muttering, “Can... Can I uh... hot chocolate?” The employee - Roman, if his name tag is correct - smiles and nods, grabbing the biggest size and writing Virgil’s order. “Will that be all?” Virgil nods. “Alright, your total is $3.37.” Virgil takes a five out of his pocket and hands it over, telling Roman “Keep the change.” before sitting in the furthest, most isolated corner of the coffee shop. Virgil pulls out his phone, quickly exiting out of his texting history without looking and pulling up Tumblr. While he waits, Virgil scrolls through his dash and reblogs/likes whatever he finds funny. After a few minutes of this, a coffee cup is set in front on him and Virgil looks up to see Roman smiling kindly down at him holding his own coffee cup.
“I’m starting my break right now. Would you mind me joining you?” Virgil shakes his head and tries his best attempt at a smile before picking up his cup and sipping at his hot chocolate. That’s some good shit. Virgil goes back to his phone, ignoring Roman.
Roman, apparently, has other plans because he tries to strike up a conversation. “Soooo. You never told me your name. You know, that’s usually the custom in coffee shops.” Virgil raises an eyebrow and looks around. “Well, I think it’s an accurate to assume that out of a clientele of... 7 people, you could find my face.” Out of curiosity, he looks at what Roman wrote on his cup.
Tall, Dark, and Handsome
Virgil instantly feels his face heat up. He sets the cup down a little too quickly and stuffs his hands in his lap. Roman grins. “So, can I have the name of the prince of my dreams tonight?” Virgil looks up at Roman, making eye contact for the first time since he’s walked in. “I- I uh-” He wasn’t sure how he felt about all of this, but he didn’t think it was good. Roman leans in with a soft smirk, and Virgil leans back.
“Or maybe you could tell me over dinner tonight?” He reaches over and takes Virgil’s hand, kissing his knuckles. Virgil shudders and pulls his hand back, feeling sick. “I really-”
“Or perhaps you need to think on it? That’s alright, take all the time you need.” Virgil’s eyes dart around the small shop. Including the other employees, there were ten other people in the building right now. Ten people to witness if Virgil flipped out and made a scene. Ten people to watch this practical stranger get angry with him because he can’t even turn someone down right. He can still feel Roman’s lips pressed against his hand and it’s making his breathing come out a little funny. He brings a hand up to his chest; has his heart always beat this fast? He looks up at Roman to see the other staring at him. Oh god, he was already making a scene, he was being a nuisance. He clenches his fists in his lap and stares at his knees, shaking slightly, sinking into his bulky black hoodie.
Roman smiled as a gothic cutie walked in, looking around before coming up to the counter. Roman couldn’t help the little nickname that slipped out as he asked what Virgil wanted, and he wrote the order on the cup before taking the money with a grin. It wasn’t until said cutie was gone that he realized he forgot to get his name. He hums in thought before writing Tall, Dark, and Handsome in sharpie. He briefly debated adding a small heart, or his number, but decided to play it safe and just made the man’s hot chocolate. When he brought it to him, Roman was practically vibrating with nerves as he asked to join. Truthfully, he had actually just clocked out for the day, but cute boys were much more receptive when you were only going to be around for fifteen minutes, not indefinitely.
When he asked for Dark Angel’s name and got that snarky response about how empty the coffee shop was, he had to hide a laugh behind his hand. When the stranger looked at the cup and turned red, Roman internally cheered. He’s totally into me! He called the other the prince of his dreams. Smooth. When they made eye contact and Roman looked into those beautiful eyes, he couldn’t help but suggest dinner. He was a romantic at heart, this was his... semi-grand gesture. He kissed Dark and Stormy’s hand, feeling suave as hell, until cutie pulls his hand back. He backtracks; don’t want to come on too strong now, Roman. Then he’s looking around, and Roman can see him starting to freak out, and oh god he really screwed this one up didn’t he?
“I’m really sorry, did I read this wrong? If you’re not into guys you can say so, I’m sorry I overstepped. Are you alright?”
Virgil barely heard what Roman said, his heart beating loudly in his ears. He stood on slightly shaky legs, stuttering out an excuse to leave as he grabbed his phone and the cup and started heading for the door. He made it outside but didn’t stop, blindly turning and walking down the sidewalk. Was he heading to Patton’s, or away from it? He didn’t care, he just wanted to be away from that coffee place. A hand grabs his shoulder and he spins around; if not for the panic gripping his throat he would have screamed.
Roman stands before him, face the picture of concern and guilt, hands fidgeting in front of him like he doesn’t know what to do with them. After a moment of silence, he speaks up. “I swear I didn’t mean to make you uncomfortable and I’m so sorry for whatever I said and did that made it seem like I had ill intentions. Can... Can I make it up to you? We can go wherever you like, any public place with plenty of witnesses even, and we can just chat. I’d like to be your friend, if that’s okay.” Virgil looks at Roman, studying his face for signs of a lie. But you could never spot them on D-. Virgil nods slowly, shoving his hands deep in his hoodie pockets to hide their trembling. “Yeah... Okay. Let’s go to the park.” Virgil looks around, then turns and starts heading for the park. He hasn’t been over there yet, but he’s seen it when he goes to the store with Patton - they pass right by it.
He can feel Roman following behind a couple steps back, and he can also feel the waves of guilt and anxiety coming off of him. Maybe Roman wasn’t such a bad guy after all? Maybe Virgil really did just misunderstand him? They reach the park after a few silent minutes of walking and Virgil plops down on the nearest park bench with a small sigh. Roman sits beside him, leaving a good six inches between them, and the two silently people-watch.
It seems like hours before Roman finally gathers the courage to open his mouth. “So... If you don’t mind me asking, and if you don’t mind telling a virtual stranger, what happened?” Virgil doesn’t bother asking what he means; he already knows. He sighs slowly, leaning his elbows on his knees and looking at the concrete between his feet.
“I met Dee back in our Junior year of high school. He had just moved here from like, Texas, I think? So he had no friends. We became close pretty fast, along with my childhood friend Patton.” Virgil rubs his chin with his index finger as he thinks. “He asked me out to Junior prom. Before then, we’d both known we liked the other but were dancing around it. Prom was our first date, I guess.” He has no idea why he’s telling Roman all of this, but he feels like he can trust him. “We started dating after that. He was... a great boyfriend, the best really. So kind and considerate, wanted to protect the people he cared about... When we graduated, he asked me to move in with him, which I did. He went to school and I stayed home. He said if I got a job he’d never get to see me, so I didn’t. He apparently had enough money from his parents that we didn’t have to worry about stuff like rent.
“When he got closer to finally graduating, I think the stress began to get to him. He started becoming more snappy, he was easily angered, and he didn’t smile or joke as much anymore. By the time he’d finally gotten his degree, he was almost a completely different person.” Virgil closes his eyes briefly. “He wanted me to ask permission before I did anything without him, he didn’t want me going to see certain friends, and even the ones he liked I had to ask about first. He... He’d come home from a bad day at work and. And he’d hit me.” Virgil opens his eyes when a gentle hand settles on his shoulder. “He’d started to do it when I messed something up, or if I argued with him. When I did something without asking. A- a few months ago-...” His voice breaks and he has to take a deep breath before continuing. “A few months ago, he raped me for the first time.”
This is the first time he’s said it out loud, and the words bring tears to his eyes. “H-he said if I loved him, I’d do this for him, a-and I did, I do, y’know?” He scoffs derisively. “God, how fucked a-am I that I still love him. He hurt me over and over and left me to rot and I still... I miss him.” Roman is silent for a long moment, letting Virgil compose himself before speaking up. “No you don’t.” At the quizzical look Virgil shoots him, he elaborates. “You were used to a certain... way of living. An expectation for how your day, or maybe the rest of your life, would go. Now that he’s not in your life... That expectation is gone. You don’t miss him, you miss the expectation.” He hums and sits back. “Well, maybe you miss him, but I’m sure it’s the old him you miss. That man has been gone for a long time; have you mourned him, yet?”
Virgil looks at Roman, blown away by how the man who’d been goofily hitting on him not even an hour ago was now speaking with such... wisdom. He shakes his head, and Roman nods. “You should. You’ll feel better.” Virgil bites his lip.
Roman looks over at him. “What?”
“My name’s Virgil.”
He smiles. “It’s a pleasure to meet you, Virgil.”
Virgil hesitates before walking through the front door, trying to relax. It’d be fine. Patton always said the more the merrier, right? As soon as the door shut behind him, he was being nearly bowled over by Patton running over and pulling him into a hug. “Oh my god, kiddo! You had me so worried! Where have you been? Are you okay?” Virgil felt a ball of guilt settle in his stomach and gently hugged Patton back. “Pat, I told you I was going out today, you didn’t have to worry.”
“But you were gone for so long!”
“Patton, we have been over this. Virgil is an adult, he can take care of himself just fine.” Logan comes wandering out of the kitchen, standing a couple feet back from the other two still by the door. Virgil gives him a small wave that he returns. “So, how was your outing?” Virgil swallowed nervously. Here goes. “Pretty good... I even made a friend.” Patton gasps and pulls back, holding Virgil at arm’s length. Patton was the only person Virgil would ever let touch him this much, but right now he really wished he’d stop. “That’s great kiddo! Who are they?” Virgil picks at his cuticles. “Well... his name’s Roman.”
“And how old is this Roman?” Uh oh. Dad voice.
“He’s the same age as us, Pat.” Virgil looks from Patton to Logan then back again.
“And you just met him today.” Virgil looks at the carpet. “....Yes.”
“Virge, you know I love you, and trust you with my life, but how well do you really know this guy?”
“Well enough that I told him about Dee.”
That makes the room go silent, and Virgil pushes on before he loses his nerve. “And we’ve been talking all day and getting to know each other. I actually uh... Invited him over... For dinner...?” Patton blinks, trying to fight back a smile. “Really.”
“Well, where is he then?” Logan takes a step forward. Virgil nods and opens the front door, leaning out into the hallway and calling out. “Hey dude you can come in, they won’t kill you.” Patton opens his mouth to say something when Roman walks into the room and Logan of all people cuts him off.
Patton and Virgil share a confused look. “You know him, Lo?”
Logan nods, still staring at Roman slightly wide-eyed. “He was my college roommate.”
A grin almost instantly splits Patton’s face. “Well! The more the merrier!” Virgil would bring up the fact that Patton just decided to trust Logan and not him, but honestly he’s just glad this worked out okay.
“So, what’s for dinner tonight, Padre?” Virgil snrks at the nickname and Patton positively beams.