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Mar 26, 2019 4:13 AM
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"I seriously can't thank you enough." 

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"Don't... worry about it? It's fine."

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"Still. Thank you." 

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"I'll... go? And get started on the Kingpin thing?"

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"— yeah, good idea. And I'll talk to you later?" 

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"I'll text you when I have something?"

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Nod. Two fingered wave. "Bye!" 

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Lev does not get started on the Kingpin thing. He flops in his bed and contemplates the fact that Spiderman smiled at him. He's kind of ecstatic and kind of horny and he kind of wants to die. 

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He really only came up here to have somewhere private to talk. He swings around buildings for a little while just because he can, and then slips back inside and changes out of the suit and goes to bed. 

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When Sasha goes to English class the next morning, That Guy Who Always Lets Sasha Cheat Off His Test is sitting in his accustomed seat next to Sasha. He's thin, almost emaciated, like he's looking for a career in fashion modeling once he graduates from Stuyvesant. In his usual manner, he's eating something calorie-dense with one hand (today it's a muffin) while solving a puzzle with the other (today it's the world's thousand most impossible crossword puzzles, through which he is moving at a steady clip). 

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He has his homework done (thank god for SparkNotes and Goodreads quote lists) and, while he didn't actually read the chapters they were supposed to read, he did read someone's blog post about the book so he has some opinions on it that he can use for the class discussion. 

He definitely does not look longingly at the muffin, because seriously That Guy Who Always Lets Sasha Cheat Off His Test needs to eat more, and knowing him That Guy would totally just give Sasha his food. 

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That Guy eats a lot, actually; he's eating basically whenever Sasha sees him. It doesn't seem to have made him any less thin. 

Class starts. That Guy sadly puts away his crossword puzzle book. He not only has done his homework, he is the only person in the class who actually seems to care about the thematic implications of the green light in the Great Gatsby.

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Yeah, well. He still clearly needs to eat more.

Sasha is careful not to never raise his hand, but also to never be one of less than five people with their hands up. He gets called on exactly once and, while he hasn't in fact read any of The Great Gatsby, he sure can make up some stuff about the color green. 

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That Guy snorts at Sasha's opinions on the color green. 

Halfway through class, the teacher announces a group project. That Guy turns hesitantly towards Sasha as if he wants to ask him to work with him, but is also terrified at the prospect.

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Oh, good, That Guy knows what he's about. 

Sasha turns his whole body to face him, sitting sideways in his desk. "Want to work together?" 

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"Yeah. Yeah I would."

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He makes a mental note to tell his parents about the group project; this'll be his excuse for getting home late for as long as he can make it last. 

"Awesome!" He smiles at That Guy. He does not remember That Guy's name. He's pretty sure he's heard That Guy's name, and it would be kind of rude to not remember it, so he's just going to glance at his paper later to find out what it is. 

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That Guy glances at the teacher. She is not paying any attention. 

He whispers, "we can, like, go to your place to work on it if you want? But if you don't I'm happy to just... do it. I know you're really busy." 'Because you keep cheating off my tests' goes unstated. "And it's often faster and the project gets a better grade if I do the whole thing by myself."

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"...are you sure?" 

He asks more because it feels like a bad idea not to say it than for any other reason. 

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There is some amount of internal conflict on That Guy's face!

"Yeah, of course, I don't like spending two hours arguing about what font to use any more than anyone else does."

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Well, That Guy had his chance to say that no actually he wanted Sasha to do his part. 

"Okay! I will try not to get underfoot, then." 

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When Sasha smiles at That Guy he blushes bright red, bites his lip, and looks down at the desk. 

Perhaps that will provide some enlightenment about what That Guy's internal conflict about the group project was and why he's putting so much effort into Sasha's grade in English class.

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Oh no that's cute. Sasha feels a tiny bit bad about using him for a grade and significantly more bad about not remembering his name. "Thank you," he says, a little bit softer. 

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Blush blush blush blush. "Anytime."

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He smiles again and keeps to himself for the rest of the period; if anyone looks at him, he is very intensely working on what looks like it might be the project but is actually his homework for next period. 

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