“Delivery for Sunstreaker? They’re located here, right?”
“At the end of the hall.” Raj’s voice was sharp and nasal, cultivated and controlled, as always. Sunstreaker hesitated over the aquamarine, considering, and chose turquoise instead.
There was a knock on the open doorframe behind him. He ignored it for a moment in favor of perfecting the highlights of Triton’s hair.
“Uh, hey? Delivery for Sunstreaker? That’s here, right?”
He grunted. “Just leave it on the counter there.”
“No can do, bro. I need a signature for this baby. Assuming you can sign for the business.”
“Give me a minute.”
A minute turned into three turned into five, and Sunstreaker completely forgot that someone was waiting behind him for something as mundane as a signature.
Until said someone cleared their throat right by his elbow.
“Holy –!” The brush slid across the delicate fronds of Triton’s hair, covering the strands of sea-green foam.
Damn. He’d been right, aquamarine really was the wrong color.
“Sorry.” There was a clear wince in the words. “But hey, at least you can put the brush down for a moment and sign for this.”
Sunstreaker sighed and turned to the most recent pain in his ass.
The eyes that met his own were the perfect shade of brilliant blue, framed by long black lashes and accentuated by the most eloquently shaped eyebrows Sunstreaker had ever seen. He forgot to breathe for a moment.
Then he remembered. With a vengeance.
The eyebrows frowned in consternation. “Whoa, bro, don’t choke on me. I do mail delivery, not CPR.”
“You’ve got to let me paint you,” Sunstreaker blurted.
The eyebrows rose, and the eyes widened. “Um. Well. Sign for this, please.”
The clipboard was held up in front of Sunstreaker, almost like a shield. The hands holding it were long and slim, with short, uneven fingernails.
He stared. “Oh. Yeah, sure.” He signed the dotted line with his usual flourish.
The delivery guy turned the clipboard and looked at the signature. “You actually signed as Sunstreaker. I thought that was a business name.”
“No. Well, yes. It’s an artist name, but it’s me. It’s my name.”
Christ. Open mouth, insert foot, promptly choke on it.
The blue eyes laughed at him. “Cool. So you’re the artist, huh? Did you paint all these?” Beautiful hands waved, indicating the canvases in various states of completion.
“Yeah, they’re mine. Some are commissions. And you hopefully brought what I needed to finish them.”
“I did?” The eyes smiled. “Cool. Do I get credit?”
Sunstreaker smirked. “That depends on what’s in the package.”
“Oh. Oh! Oh yeah, here.” The skin under the blue eyes turned a complimentary shade of pink. “That’s kind of an integral part of the delivery business, isn’t it?” The hands passed him a small brown envelope.
When Sunstreaker opened it, the expected two paint tubes fell out. He held up one to show it to the blue eyes. “See this? Bluelight. I’ve been waiting for this for three months. It’s been on backorder for ever.”
“Well, then I’m glad to be the bringer of backorder paint tubes.” He grinned, perfect eyes crinkling at the corners. “So do I get credit?”
Sunstreaker snorted. “Yeah, sure. I’ll credit it to the UPS delivery guy.”
The eyes soften into a genuine smile. “No. To Sideswipe.”
Sunstreaker stared. “That is not your name.”
Cue that pretty blush again. “It is when you drive a UPS delivery truck that kind of crossed the intersection without looking a few times too many. Not that it was my fault all the time. Well, it was that once. But the first two times the other guy drove on red, and the third time they ignored right of way, so…”
Sunstreaker couldn’t help laughing. “Fine. You got it. I’ll credit Sideswipe. I hope you didn’t kill anybody.”
The guy raised his perfect hands in defense. “None. Swear to God. Didn’t even maim them. Though I may have killed off an old Honda Civic.”
Sunstreaker chuckled. “That car is an offense to anyone with a hint of an eye for aesthetics anyway.”
“Yeah.” Sideswipe laughed, those blue eyes sparkling. “So, um. I’ve gotten my signature, and you’ve gotten your paint, so I have to go. Got more deliveries to make.”
“Fair enough.” He stared into those eyes again, trying to match the shade and memorize those eyebrows. “Thanks for bringing my stuff.”
“Sure. It’s my job.” He walked backwards out the door. “Bye, Sunstreaker.”
He listened until he heard the front door slide closed and the crunch of tires on gravel as the UPS truck drove away.