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Rimuru is a busy person – it's a given with him being the ruler of such a vast land. He prioritizes his time according to his responsibilities, nevermind the somewhat selfish reasoning of his actions and goals. His people, his friends, everyone he cares about comes first.

It fills his working schedule up to the brim every time, almost everyday. They do hold celebrations, make small pleasant holidays in between the hard work – but Rimuru's "lazy days" are still littered with events and casual plannings.

Maybe that's why he takes a liking to the Walpurgis Banquet after his first rather important attendance. Milim even coaxes him into being one of the initiators once, then twice.

The Demon Lords' tea parties – as Milim once called them – take place of a safe haven of some sort. No matter how ridiculous it sounds, considering the attendees.

He relaxes somewhat, switches up and mixes the subordinates he takes with him sometimes. Today Shuna and Ranga stand by both sides of the portal awaiting as he discusses some simple matters with Ramiris, Guy listening in out of, perhaps, curiosity. Milim tries to build a tower with cups already emptied.

The red Demon Lord takes some sort of an interest in him lately – Ramiris whispers secretly that the Devil is a flirt, but means no harm with it. Rimuru can only laugh nervously and turn down the gossip, pushing it somewhere deeper, where he won't find it.

They talk about the Federation and how there's new trees to be planted and homes to be repainted, the road nearby once again to be prolonged. Guy lounges with a glass of wine in his hand as Ramiris chirps, sitting on his shoulder just because she's allowed.

"The more I hear about the Tempest the lovelier it sounds. Perhaps you'll take me out one day – or do I have to make an appointment?" the voice of the Devil cuts into the pause of the conversation like a knife into butter and Rimuru blinks.

He makes excuses, debates with himself and the ongoing projects that need to be finished or polished properly. Hums, argues with Raphael and seconds later answers Guy with a yes. Yes, he has to make an appointment.

The Demon Lord laughs, throws his head back and his shoulders shake, making the Pixie fly up, bubbling up with displeasure. He looks up again, a soft grin on his face – it's a date then. He says.

Shuna gasps softly, covering her mouth with a sleeve and Rimuru doesn't exactly understand in what kind of a situation he put himself in.

***

Guy comes in bringing cold air and a trail of frost on his boots – his red eyes stilled with wonder and ease only a powerful being as such can carry. Raphael doesn't bother to announce his arrival as officially and proper:

[ Your date has entered the building. ]

Rimuru stops himself from arguing – they really won't listen, because technically it's not incorrect to call the Demon Lord so. Just in this case. Just because it was more or less settled. Just...

He pinches the bridge of his nose. He's grateful that Guy at least listened to his very much polite instructions – conditions? – and hid his aura not to disturb any unaware citizens. Which... most of them hopefully stay as.

"You still look busy... even though we agreed about this beforehand," the smile on his face is small, yet sharp. Hitting in all the right places in Rimuru's carefully crafted facade.

It's surprisingly crowded in the spacious office with just two of them in there. Or maybe that's just the way Guy seems to monopolize the air around him with his still very much prominent presence.

"I look... underdressed," the Slime coughs slightly, casting a glance up and down the Devil's form.

It looks like Guy has added some extra detail into his usual appearance – a fancier necklace there and a different jacket here made a huge difference. Made Rimuru feel like he didn't put enough effort on his own.

"Less hustle with the undressing."

"Hey!"

"And you look quite wonderful," the distance between them shortens quickly in one, two confident strides, "Good enough to eat," Guy's fingers dance across his cheekbone, almost caressing the skin. Tender, yet with enough force that Rimuru doesn't dare to move away.

"I'm not sure... that Slime is edible..."

[ NOTICE : Slimes are in fact... ]

Please. Don't.

[ Understood. ]

"An-anyway... do you have any... preference," the choice of the word makes Guy smirk, "Preference on the type of facility! We're going to visit!"

Rimuru doesn't think he's ever been this flustered in his life – at least in this one. The close proximity of the other Demon Lord that doesn't seem to plan on removing his hand from his face made the process of thinking somewhat harder.

"Oh, you're rather serious in your ways of handling this. Official even. I like that, it's fresh... now, let me think..." Guy hums, still leaning on the table as Rimuru looks away to admire the carpet. The fingers slide further into his hair, tugging a loose lock behind the ear. The one. Guy bit. Back then, "What's your opinion on alcohol?"

"F-fine?" Rimuru croaks, clearing his throat quickly, "Good. It's good... I drink. It's just... well, outside of my lands, it can be bothersome to order. Because of my appearance."

This makes Guy laugh – a surprisingly pleasant, deep sound resonates with something in Rimuru. He doesn't notice, not really, but it helps him relax. His shoulders becoming less stiff.

"A barkeep even referred to me as a young lady once! Said I am too young to drink. Mistaken not once, but twice. Lost some money he could have made too," Rimuru adds, his voice rising in a theatrical outrage and then falling into a grumble.

"Don't like being addressed as a lady?" Guy teases, finally leaving Rimuru's face alone. The vacant space left slightly tingling.

"Not much. I understand that technically, as a Slime I'm... well, more genderless, then gender-something. But I prefer being identified as a male. Ah, referred to as one too. If that's not a..." he frowns.

"Oh, no. That's definitely not a problem. If it's a problem in my case for you though... I can always change into my other fo-," Guy smiles wider then, but doesn't actually finish the sentence properly with Rimuru cutting in.

"No. No, that's... I haven't thought much about... I've liked women before, but... I don't think I've thought about men much. And thought about anyone actually with..." his tone gets more muffled, the emotion slipping into confused thoughtfulness.

"With all the work?"

"Y-yeah."

There's silence after that – as if Guy's just decided to let Rimuru have some time to come to terms with his newly found sexual identity crisis.

He really didn't pay as much attention to the fact that Guy was in fact and is a guy. And he is planning on going out with him. And that usually happens when people – beings – find each other attractive or any other way interesting. Did he find Guy attractive? He is attractive, just by common standards. Who's set those standards then? Why hasn't he agreed to Guy's offer to shift into a female form just now?

"You're thinking too much. And our time is still rather limited it seems. Who knows how long we can be alone before any of your subordinates show up and ask..."

Guy's voice snaps Rimuru back to reality.

"Oh, I made myself not busy by making them quite busy, so..."

He did. It actually cost him some mental gymnastics not to say too much about the why's and what for's – most of his people are always happy to help, but with some it was... more difficult making it not sound suspicious.

He might've a little bit cowardly reassigned the duty of keeping Shion busy and questionless to Diablo. Which earned him a look from the Devil, but with that he can work later. Probably.

"So that means... I have a couple of hours for you," he adds, almost reassuringly.

"Just for me, you say?.. I'm usually the talker, but it seems you're good at it yourself. Seemed so before, but in other... areas. Another pleasant surprise," occupying one of the chairs now, Guy sits one leg propped onto another. His voice light and honey-like, "And speaking of alcohol, I can order for you anywhere, don't worry. But perhaps it would be more comfortable for you... if we stayed somewhere nearby?"

"That can... that can be arranged. I actually already made some arrangements?" the statement sounds more like a question, "What do you think about a... picnic?" Rimuru stands up, a sheepish look on his face now replaced with a collected one, "I didn't know what you'd like specifically, that's why I made several preparations just in case."

Guy doesn't answer right away – which obviously doesn't make Rimuru somewhat nervous. The Demon Lord watches him, like a predator about to strike and it sends a shiver across Rimuru's spine. If Slimes technically even have one.

Guy isn't here to cause trouble – not in a way that's dangerous – he has to remind himself.

"You are indeed something, Rimuru," says Guy finally in a tone that drapes over Rimuru's shoulders and leaves him standing motionless, fixed. He leaves the chair, circling – and leans down, closer. Lips parted in a toothy grin:

"Lead the way then."