Pluto Jackson knew many things.
He knew how to fight- he’d killed countless monsters during his adventures in Drakkenheim, Caspia and Illyria. He knew how the sunset in Caspia glowed unlike any he had seen during last few months in the ruined city. He knew how to distract an enemy with impeccable technique , so that Veo could deliver the cruellest shot with her bow.
But he still couldn’t understand what he felt when he looked at Sebastian Crowe.
Recently, Pluto had begun to feel colour rush into his cheeks when he looked at Sebastian. When the man cast his spells and deceived his enemies, Pluto couldn’t help but feel that the sorcerer had a sort of power over him. Almost as if every spell and word and mannerism that Pluto admired in the man cast a small spell that neither of them had noticed for a long time but now the accumulative power was making the man choke.
Pluto found himself- more often than not- dreaming of Sebastian. Sometimes they were fighting with Veo and sometimes they were alone in Caspia, watching one of the sunsets Pluto missed so dearly but no matter if it was the apocalypse or a fantasy, Sebastian was always right there by his side. These feelings had given him cause to take a few extra minutes to polish his armour and try to make himself presentable - or at least as presentable as one could manage in Drakkenheim. And sure, he could handle the dreams, and Pluto could do with a nice bath, but the constant thoughts were driving him insane.
He couldn’t experience anything anymore without wishing that the half-elf was there to do it with him. He couldn’t listen to music without searching for Sebastian’s heart in the lyrics or eat without wondering what Sebastian would think of the meal. Even when he fell asleep, he wished that Sebastian was there. During their adventures, they had often shared rooms, but Veo was always there, and while Pluto only wanted to become closer with his friend, he never wished for the same things with Veo.
On occasion, if the feeling was particularly bad, he’d talk to Veo about it. She smiled gently and laughed along, although it wasn’t clear what part she found funny.
Sebastian Crowe was no stranger to incidents.
As an adventurer, he had been through his fair share of scrapes and the like, often brought about by his own actions. A trail of fires and lies followed in his wake, leaving anyone who encountered him with either burns or trust issues. Since the academy had expelled him, Sebastian had been his own motivation. He needed to figure out his own powers and their source, so that he could regain control in his life and stop the incidents which kept hurting the people he cared for.
Pluto Jackson had recently fallen into this category, though Sebastian doubted that he knew it.
As much as Sebastian felt for Pluto, the poor guy was much too into Jupiter Jones to even notice the constant flirting from Sebastian. He knew Pluto wasn’t the most subtle spell in the book, but throwing himself into Jupiter’s arms only to return to a burning building after some hand holding wasn’t the most subtle way to let a man know you like him.
When they stayed up a little too late or Sebastian drank a little too much , he felt a voice deep inside him, telling him to confess to Pluto, the desire to know if his fellow adventurer reciprocated his feelings pushing him onwards, ignoring any possible consequences. Sebastian knew all about consequences. He knew that Pluto would pretend to act nice but would stop letting Sebastian ‘accidentally’ touch his arm for a moment too long; their playful teasing would suddenly turn into an awkward question about flirting. Even when Sebastian had finally moved on, he’d always be that one troubled boy who had a crush on Pluto Jackson.
So, he tried to push his feelings away. Every time he thought about Pluto when it was a little too late in the night, he quickly replaced the thoughts with Drakkenheim. And every time he looked at Pluto’s lips while he talked, he would avert his gaze.
Everything about Pluto was just a little too much for Sebastian. He was a little too strong; a little too tall; a little too cute, and a little too perfect. It was going to be the death of him but he knew no one could find out, so every night Sebastian went to sleep a little too sad.
It seemed that Veo was the only one around here with a brain.
She had watched Pluto save Sebastian and Sebastian save Pluto enough times to notice the difference to how most allies save each other. During a fight, if an ally ever went down it was beneficial to everyone if someone slipped in and gave them a greater healing potion. Any fighter with a brain knew this. But when they were in the mirror, battling Reaper to win a question from a demon she noticed a few things that didn’t quite seem platonic between them.
Pluto was known for being somewhat over the top in battles. He would throw a few extra punches if it meant he would look cooler and this fight was no exception. The thing that stood out to Veo though, was after fighting for and protecting an almost dead Sebastian, Pluto still gave him all the care he needed before Pluto stopped to think about his own injuries and fading strength. Just cradling Sebastian's head, feeding him a potion. It was clear to Veo that he was in love.
Sebastian was a lot more subtle with his feelings than Pluto. It wasn’t great gestures or flirtatious words that allowed him to show his love but it was all in his body language. When in danger he ran towards Pluto. Maybe a conscious decision for safety, maybe a subconscious decision for love. But nevertheless Sebastian fell unconscious under Pluto and admitted that he was scared, in a feat of openness Veo had never seen Sebastian reach before.
When Pluto asked Veo for help with his feelings, she expected it. What surprised her was that Pluto was talking about Sebastian as if he were just a really good friend that he dreamt about and thought about for hours on end.
They were both oblivious to how they felt and it was at that point Veo started joining in on the bets the Hooded Lanterns were placing on when they’d get together. She put down 30 gold for next week- now to set up her hopeless friends.