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Compromised

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What do you wear to a college study night? What do you wear to a spy college study night? 

 

What do you wear to a spy college study night when you know your exam is in a language you already speak but your friend is practicing for a martial arts exam? Especially when your friend is adorably bad at martial arts and will almost definitely need your help and you know you don't really need to study anyways so you'll probably just fake it until she asks for or you get her to accept your help. 

 

There were a lot of things going through Ren's mind right now. Most of them about what to wear, some about the best ways to help Ava perfect her form, and a few fleeting thoughts about how to fake studying tonight. 

Mostly about what to wear. Ava knew they'd be studying for a language exam. Did she know that Ren already spoke Korean? They forgot if they'd told her. Hopefully it won't matter-- Ren really did have a Korean exam tomorrow, but they just didn't need to study for it.

Workout gear didn't seem right.

Ren examines their current outfit in the mirror: black leggings, a tank top, sweatshirt. Does it make it obvious they were just there to help Ava, or does it just look comfy? Because as much as Ren is definitely into the way this tank top made their arms look, they were supposed to be breaking out the books, not breaking a sweat. 

With a sigh, Ren turns to their way-too-small, college-provided wardrobe to pull out a pair of grey jeans. It won't be as easy to work out in than just a tank top on its own, but at least it's a little less forward, and these jeans have some give. If they've learned anything at the Academy, it's that a spy should always be as inconspicuous as possible. 

As they move to evaluate the new look, they catch their phone screen lighting up from the corner of their eye.

Something in their chest tightens, just a bit, and they return to their mirror, tugging on the waistband of the jeans and adjusting their tank top. 

Better. This was better. 

They could still move, it wasn't blatantly obvious they planned to help Ava with her form, arms still look good. 

Ren squints at their reflection. This was better, for sure, but was it good? Was it too much skin? What if Ava came over to look at what Ren was fake-studying and then she leaned over and maybe she was also wearing a tank top because she was working out and then-- 

Ren cuts off the line of thought. Layers were always a good look. Ren grabs the jean jacket/hoodie combo they wore today, strewn over Ren's short stack of pretend study books, right where they'd haphazardly thrown it after class. They quickly slip on the jacket and reassess. 

Is that better? It's definitely gayer, Ren thinks. And that's usually a good thing. It won't be as easy to work out in than just a tank top on its own, but there were no rules saying you can't take off your jean jacket and hoodie and only wear a tank top at your friend's house during a study night. Right? 

Ren shakes their head, clearing their mind of silly questions and trying to loosen the vice in their chest. They were on a mission: fake-study Korean, help Ava with her exam, and avoid Jones at all cost. 

Plus at least they get to see Ava. It's not like field agents and computer kids (Ren still didn't know the actual names of any other majors) were in any of the same classes and it's been kinda hard to see her. And as much as they like their field agent friends, it was always nice to be around someone whose goal wasn't always to beat up bad guys or touting scars from practice sections as badges of honor. Field agent training felt like being on another planet sometimes, and being around Ava, with her dorky charm and seeming disinterest in any sort of confrontation, always felt like coming back to earth

"Hey Siri, text Ava that I'll be there in ten." 

"Your message reads: I'll be there in ten. Would you like to send it?"

"Send it," Ren calls across the room. They take a deep breath and figure there's nothing more they can do. Or maybe there is-- Jones will be there, after all. 

Ren grabs their handy bottle of pepper spray and throws it in their backpack with their phone and the books they need for their fake study session. Better be safe than sorry.