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'i don't like people, but you're an exception'

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Owen has been grouchy all evening, refusing point blank to play along with Ben and Jamie’s latest mad scheme, without even a humorous front, and cutting too deep in every return of banter. George frankly isn’t sure why Owen hadn’t left earlier, gone to sulk in their room like he clearly wants - he’ll barely even respond to anyone but George, or at least not with actual words. For some reason he’s still responding to George amicably enough, but it’s both rude and awkward to hold a two person conversation in the middle of a camp lounge, especially as Owen sinks further and further down in his slouch until George is practically talking to the back of his head. Eventually Owen leaves, and Jonny heaves an exaggerated sigh of relief.

“What’s up with him?” Jonny asks George, immediately propping his feet up in the space Owen had left.

George shrugs. “Beats me,” he reckons Owen is just wound up because it’s Ireland, but knows Owen wouldn’t want him saying that.

Owen seems to spend half his week insisting that it’s not weird to play against his dad - which George is sure only helps with the situation. Now he thinks about it Ben had been joking around about the whole thing earlier, which is probably why he’d received quite such a harsh treatment. While George has no doubt Owen and his dad both want to win just a fiercely as ever, that they’re not lying about that, that doesn’t mean the event passes entirely without strain. George tries to do his best not to add to it, and figures the best thing he can do tonight is stay down here and leave Owen to his own devices - he certainly hadn’t seemed keen on talking prior to going up to their room, after all.

So George stays downstairs longer than he usually would, to the point of curious looks from Jonny, only returning to his and Owen’s room 15 minutes from curfew.

“Alright?” he greets Owen, cautious.

“Thought you were never going to come up!” Owen - complains?

George cocks his head to the side. “You didn’t seem in the mood for company,” he points out.

Owen looks shamefaced, at that. “Yeah, well - I don’t like people, but you’re an exception.”

George bites down on a smile. “Careful Owen, that was almost sweet.”

Owen scowls. “I’m never sweet,”

George raises an eyebrow, a smile playing around his mouth. “No? Must be another boyfriend who organised a pre-birthday surprise with my whole family before the Six Nations, so I wouldn’t miss out while in camp.”

“Must be,” Owen agrees. “It’s shameful of you to cheat on me like that, Georgie, really,” he shakes his head, though makes no effort to hide a grin.

“I’m terrible,” George agrees, leaning in for a brief kiss. “Don’t know why you put up with me.”

“Love you,” Owen answers, casually.

George leans in for a more thorough kiss. “Sweet,” he proclaims.