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Rapture

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1.

Benedict knew his bestfriend was a great guy, but James was just not one of the luckiest men in the world either. In romance that is, he’s pretty lucky in financial and friendships. James obviously got good friends—including him, of course—he got a loving aunt that loved him since the day he was born, all customers of his shop that loved him, with probably a big number of fangirls and fanboys out there after seeing his smile. Benedict wasn’t worried of the affections James was getting from them, but this wasn’t the case anymore.

“Seriously, Ben.” James just laughed as he put out a big pot of white lilies to put it outside his shop, while Benedict just stared at what he was doing without even offering to help. “I don’t need it. I’m fine by my own.”

“This is not about being fine anymore, Romeo. It’s about you, finding your happiness.” Benedict who was putting his hands into his coat, raised his shoulders up and tilted his head.

“Being fine isn’t happy?” James asked, got into the shop and grabbed another pot to put it outside along with the lilies.

“I didn’t say that, per se. I was just saying, sometimes it’s fun to hang out with… other couples, to certain occasion.” Benedict tried to be as subtle as possible, but James knew him better.

“What occasion?” James asked, walking into the shop again as Benedict crossed his arms on his chest, faking a curious face.

“I don’t know. Maybe a birthday, a reunion…” Benedict paused to see James’ reaction, but the florist was just looked at him curiously.

“You know that I’m fine with you and Tom being all couple-y all the time. I can hang out with Eddie or Dan.” James said as he ignored the little whine from Benedict’s mouth as the taller rolled his eyes out loud.

“That’s not—Eddie got Hannah, Daniel got Erin, we’re all have someone to cuddle in rainy and stormy days.” Benedict argued, feeling even more annoyed as James looked like wasn’t interested at all in this conversation.

“Well, I’m not scared of rain and storm.” James replied.

“You’re missing the point.” Benedict protested.

James rolled his eyes, sighing. “Well, then just cut the chase, Batch. What is it?” James asked impatiently, staring at the taller man with more serious face. Benedict opened his mouth before he closed it again, like he was preparing things to say.

“I’m… trying to get you a date.” Benedict poked some leaves on the pot without looking at James like he was embarrassed. “For… an occasion... thatwillhappeninaveryshorttime.” Benedict said quickly, James couldn’t even catch it.

James frowned at his best friend. “What?”

“I promise this one would be very nice. He’s a nice man, with nice job, and this one would definitely not be dragging you to jail.” Benedict folded his lips, trying to form a pout while looking at James with puppy eyes. James scoffed mockingly, not even budge by it.

“I can’t really trust your judge for that, can I?” he said with a smile, walking to the shop counter to clean it from the dirt. “I think Tom agrees with me for that.” He continued while walking to the sink to wash the clothe he just used to wipe the counter. Benedict bit his lower lip as he was thinking of an excuse.

“I’ve told you, I didn’t know he was a dealer.” The taller lowered his voice, looked down to the floor.

“Right.” James smirked, remembering the last time Benedict tried to set him up with ‘one of his friends’, James almost got into the jail and nearly lost a big amount of money for almost £3000, for a dealer who got an imaginary sick dog who needed to get to the vet ‘very fast or she would be dead’ and he thought it didn’t sound crazy at all to James who called Tom right away for checking him out at his law school about the marijuana that the fucker hid in James’ shop.

“But thanks to me that nothing happened!” Benedict exclaimed with a force smile.

“Thanks to Tom, you mean.” James paused with a laugh, looking at his bestfriend with an amused face. Benedict scoffed as he admitted to himself that if it wasn’t because of his boyfriend who found out about that guy’s plan after he smelled something fishy about him, James would had been in jail right now. “Nice one you got there, better tie him in the knot fast so you won’t lose him.”

Benedict stunned, looking at his bestfriend who stopped smiling as his cheeks grew hotter. The taller cleared his throat awkwardly while James widened his eyes in surprise.

“Oh, shit, you did it, didn’t you?”

“Uh, yeah… there’s something I need to tell you…” Benedict stuttered, fiddling his fingers nervously on the counter. “About tying the knot thing…”

“Oh my God.” James smiled widely. “When? How?”

“Yesterday, at our place. I couldn’t think of other places than our own home.” Benedict looked at his bestfriend who was ready to burst in happiness.

“Goddammit, Ben! Congratulations!” James hugged the taller man who was chuckling and thanked him. “Holy shit, you’re finally getting married! Couldn’t even imagine this is gonna happen but I’m very happy for you, mate!”

“It still feels surreal to me too.” Benedict said as they broke the hug. “He just stared at me and said ‘yes’ just like that, and we smiled, and we laughed, it’s just… I love him, James. I wanna be with him forever.”

James felt so happy to hear it. “I know. It’s about time though, right?”

“Yeah.” Benedict nodded. “So I’m asking you to be my best man, James. Make a speech and stuff, you’re really great at that.”

“That’s how you pick your best man? Because I’m good at making speech?” James raised one of his eyebrows and mockingly laughed at the taller man. “Which, by the way, I’m terrible at it.”

“Of course you’ll do great! You’re my best friend, just talk about how great I am, and how madly in love Tom with me, while I rub my ring on your face.” Benedict gestured the back of his hand to James’ face who chuckled and jerked away from him. “And I was thinking of doing this soon, and I can’t let my best man go to my wedding alone.”

James snorted hearing that. “You just asked Tom to marry you, and the first thought that comes into your mind is a date for me?”

 “Well, actually it’s kind of my fault for overselling you to this friend of mine. I forgot to tell him what a party-ass-pooper you really are.” Benedict said sassily, lifting one of his eyebrows.

James chuckled. “How nice of you.”

“So, this Saturday, I’ve planning it out. You’ll go on the blind date with him at Five Point.”

“So your plan is me going on a date this weekend, to bring a plus one to your wedding, and your wedding is… what like eight months from now?”

“Three months. I’ve told you I’m planning this one out for a very long time.”

“Three—that’s… soon.” James frowned.

“I have this honeymoon trip planned out this year because of Tom’s work schedule that doesn’t match with mine next year.” Benedict reasoned and raised his shoulders. “And it’s not that soon, we’ve been together for a long time, it’s just about time to make it official.” James sighed but didn’t really have anything to say because Benedict and Tom had been together for seven years already. It really was about time for Benedict to finally asked the other man to marry him. It was just James always thought Tom wasn’t the marriage type of person. He was obviously wrong.

It wasn’t that James wasn’t a marriage type though. He liked weddings, he liked being in a relationship, he just wasn’t very lucky about it. After the dealer ex-boyfriend, he didn’t really bother to go on dates anymore. He didn’t love the guy, but their relationship, aside from the drug part, was nice even though it’s embarrassing to admit it.

Now James wasn’t that sure to go on dates again, not to mention blind dates—which he didn’t know the guy personally. It was too risky.

“I don’t know, Ben. What if I just bring Emma, yeah?”

Benedict frowned. “As much as I love Emma, it’s really inappropriate for a best man to bring his own aunt as a date in a wedding. Don’t you know there’re certain occasions where you can get sex without everyone complaining to the hotel receptions?”

“Wow, I’ve never felt the urge to smack someone with a cactus before right now.” James closed his eyes and walked away from Benedict to avoid the conversation. Benedict certainly followed him without planning to stop.

“What? I’m right! Look, he’s a nice chap, Tom and I know him well, he works with Tom at his firm. I met him once, he’s really nice—James McAvoy, how dare you walk out on me!” Benedict reached for James’ shirt since the shorter man was too far, resulting the shorter man jerked to the back and fell while Benedict tried to catch him but failed and fell before him.

“Fuck! Ben!” James hit his bestfriend hard in his chest. Benedict grunted but he felt guilty as well.

“I’m sorry! Shit, I’m sorry!”

Benedict tried to get up and reached for James hand, but stopped when he saw James was actually laughing.

“Is me going to the blind date really that important to you, shithead?” James tried to stop his laughter while still laying on the ground, covering his head. Benedict smiled at him and bent down to his knees.

“Yes. If you don’t like him, you’re allowed to bring someone else to my wedding.”

“Then why can’t I just meet him at your wedding again?” James frowned as Benedict offered a hand to help him up.

“Because I know you would ditch him if you ended up not liking him and made them cry, and I don’t want to see that in my wedding.” James shook his head and reached for Benedict’s hand. He punched Benedict in the arm once he stood up straight, receiving a whiny protest from the soon-to-be-groom.

“I don’t do that.”

Benedict raised his eyebrows challengingly. “Eddie’s wedding?”

“That’s unfair.” James pointed at the taller man. “He’s not my type.”

“Everyone’s not your type. The poor guy cried all night because you ditched him.” Benedict almost rolled his eyes. “But trust me, this one IS your type. Tall, handsome, kind of a dork, bad boy vibes kind of guy, like Ryan Gosling.”

“I don’t like Ryan Gosling, too posh.” James shook his head, staring at his friend with unamused face.

“Okay, James Dean.” Benedict wanted to smack James’ head so bad at this point.

“I do like James Dean.” James played his his lips, looking up as if he was imagining the said beloved actor. “He got ‘James’ in his name, it’s cool.” Benedict stared at his best friend boringly while James laughed at his reaction. “Alright, alright. So what’s his name again?”

“I’m not telling you his name.” Benedict turned his back on him, walking away from James through the roses isle.

“Wait, what? Why?” James followed him until Benedict reached the front door. The taller man folded his lips playfully and placed his finger on his chin.

“Um, because you’re a pain in the arse?” James was about to protest but Benedict raised on of his finger to point at him. “I’m giving you clues instead; tall, blue eyes, leather jacket.” Benedict sassily said and turned his back again.

“What the f—you just describe almost every man in London!” James protested as Benedict walked out the shop to reach his car.

 “Yeah, but this one’s your type!” Benedict winked as he got into his car. “Five Point’s, 6 o’clock!” he shouted before finally drove off to the road.

James looked at the vanishing car and let out a defeated sigh, but smiling nevertheless. Maybe this wasn’t a bad idea after all, it’s been a while since he had a date anyway. He walked back into his shop and flipped the board to reveal that his shop was open for today.

 

---

 

James almost cursed himself for standing at the front door of Five Point, one of the best bars in London which obviously wasn’t that quiet on the weekend. He glanced at his watch and reached his phone again in his pocket. Benedict couldn’t be reached since the morning, he didn’t even know why. There he went alone, with only tall, blue eyes, and leather jacket as his clues. But if Benedict said it was his type so maybe it wasn’t that hard to find, right?

Wrong.

The moment he stepped into the bar, almost every man was dressed like that. James sighed in defeat but walked into the bar anyway to stake out the so-called ‘his type’ of man. He didn’t even know he had that kind of type, what was his type anyway? Benedict really exaggerated everything he said, he should be more careful about this doubting he had for his best friend from now on. He looked around maybe there’s a man alone looking lost like he was.

“How can I help you, man?”

An American accent greeted him from the counter. James looked at the bartender and ordered a beer. As the bartender prepared a bottle for him, he glanced at his side and saw a ginger man with the exact same clues Benedict gave him. Was that him?

The man noticed him staring, James almost lost his breath when he saw the scruffy face and sharp greyish blue eyes stared at him back. James gulped his own pride—and saliva, and tried not to look nervous as the man kept staring at him. He realized he was blushing and his heart was beating so fast when eventually decided to approach the man.