[ Sky – Master Post ]
Title: Sometimes Capricious
Characters: Sin, Sebastian
Warnings: Comedic violence
Notes: So, this is actually one of the flashback scenes from Taste Like Sky. I’ve been trying to re-work some stuff in the series so that it fits together sensibly and chronologically, and I think I might have gotten this one nailed down.
At sixteen, Everett left home – ran away to Boston, and started calling himself ‘Singularity’. He took his GED and went to college, waltzing through a BA in Classics, before starting on his Masters in History at U. Mass. That was where he met Sebastian Lindstrom — at the time, working on his undergraduate work in English Literature, with a specialisation in non-Shakespearean Renaissance authors. Sebastian was nearly feral — suspicious and angry, distrustful and bitter, unwashed and unapproachable, but bent on his work.
They crossed in an upper-division class on the politics of Europe in the fifteenth century, and Singularity couldn’t take his eyes off the sour-faced young man. He watched for a week, before finally deciding that Sebastian just needed to loosen up a bit, and if there was one thing Singularity was good at, it was loosening people up. His harem, though proof of his talent, if not his skill, was fairly mundane, and he decided it could use a little character – and if this Sebastian didn’t count as character, he wasn’t sure what would.
Singularity proceeded to behave in all the ways that only seem like a good idea when you’re twenty and fascinated. He spent a full period tossing balls of paper with pick-up lines on them into the hood of Sebastian’s sweatshirt. Sebastian flipped his hood up, getting ready to leave the room, and turned a clearly-infuriated bright red as the paper rained down around his face, sticking in his straggly black hair. He was still picking balls of paper off himself, when Singularity cleared the last desk between them, feet first, and asked him out for coffee.
Sebastian, like a sensible member of the species, stared at Singularity in comic perplexity, before answering, "Absolutely not," and stormed off into the hall, still trailing bits of paper.
This went on for months, three days a week. Singularity tried the best lines he knew, including the Bogart classics, but Sebastian remained critically unimpressed.
"Look, I know I look a little wild, but I promise I don’t bite, unless you ask, politely."
Sebastian looked mildly disturbed, and walked out without a word.
"Seriously, I love your nose. Sadly, as a historian, I’m confined to noting that in my next paper on nineteen-seventies Massachusetts."
Sebastian’s eyes crossed, for a moment, before he responded. "I have somewhere to be. Go offend someone else."
So, the nose was out, but Bogie was still in. "We’re going to know each other eventually, why not now?"
That didn’t even get a response.
Singularity draped himself backward over a desk, between Sebastian and the door. "Dear Prudence, won’t you let me see you smile?"
Sebastian hit him in the face with a textbook, on his way past.
Finally, Singularity put himself directly in the way. He propped himself in the doorway, ass on one side, about halfway up, and feet wedged against the frame on the other side.
"Really and truly, boyo, what in the hell is your problem?" He poked Sebastian in the forehead.
"You." Sebastian raised an eyebrow and looked up at the persistent crazy in the doorframe. "Clearly."
"God bless the only honest mouth in Boston, and the man wearing it," Singularity laughed. "I’ll be straight with you. I just want to buy you a cup of coffee and pick your brains. If I’m wrong, and you’re stupid, you’ll never hear from me again. If I’m right, and you’re as bright as I think you are, the next move is yours."
Sebastian stood a moment in thought. "So, if I go have coffee with you, just this once, you’ll leave me the hell alone?"
"More or less, yeah. If that’s really what you want – or what I want after actually trying to talk to you…" Singularity looked down, pointedly.
"This once. This once, I’ll go." Sebastian shoved Singularity with the edge of a textbook. "Get out of the goddamn doorway. We’ll go to the Screw You – I mean, the Student Union," he said with a sigh. "You have forty minutes to waste my time."
"Waste your time? Aren’t you something? That mouth is going to buy you a world of trouble, and none of it from me." Singularity dropped out of the doorway and gestured for Sebastian to precede him through it.
"It’s not the mouth that buys the trouble," Sebastian snarled. "And if none of that trouble’s from you, why mention it at all?"
"Just a friendly pointer – not that you seem the terribly friendly type." Singularity stuffed his hands in his pockets, and followed Sebastian down the hall. "All the better for me, don’t you know."
"Do you even try to make sense?" Sebastian turned around, face squinched in confused dismay. "Ever?"
"I do make sense. I manufacture it whole-cloth." Singularity shrugged easily. "It’s not so difficult as all that."
Sebastian blinked and rubbed the bridge of his exceptional nose. "Clearly, I have not had enough coffee, today. That was almost funny."
"Clearly," Singularity retorted, "you have not had enough coffee, because that was actually funny."
"Well, then, let us hasten to the coffee, and we shall see who has it right." Sebastian turned and stalked off down the hall, with Singularity sauntering amusedly behind him.
And once they were out, Sebastian actually had fun.
He’d started out arguing the politics of art with Singularity, but on the whole, Singularity had already come to most of the same conclusions, so there was little to argue. By the time it came right down to the linguistic grind — Sebastian always played tone versus structure and word choice as his last card, when he expected someone to go away — Singularity was reading Volpone over his shoulder and laughing his ass off. Fucking history majors…
He told the mad historian his name, that day, and was told, in return, that the boy with the long blue hair was called only ‘Singularity’ — the point at which all things become indefinite.