Title: No Wingman Needed
Character/s: Merlin, Arthur
Summary: When you don't realise that you're actually dating.
Word Count: 471
Prompt: Fake Relationship
Author's Notes: I played fast and loose with this prompt.
“If I’m wrong about jalapeno poppers, I never want to be right.”
Arthur was devouring the platter on the table.
“Arthur?” Merlin had a chicken wing halfway to his mouth.
“Hmmm,” inquired Arthur, mouth full of cream cheese and jalapeno.
“Is it just me, or is there something off about tonight?”
“Nothing off about these poppers,” Arthur selected another to stuff into his mouth.
“No. Arthur, look around.”
Without bothering to remove the popper from his mouth, Arthur looked around. He sucked in the rest of the popper and swallowed before turning back to Merlin.
“Looks fine to me.”
Merlin sighed. “Look properly.”
Eyebrows raised, Arthur gave the pub another look round. “Everyone seems really cosy,” he observed.
“That’s cos they’re all on dates. It’s bloody Valentine's Day.”
“Are you sure?”
Merlin held up his phone for Arthur to see the date.
“Huh? That’s all you have to say? Look at us. We’re pathetic. In the months that we’ve known each other, we couldn’t even get a Valentine's date.”
This gave Arthur pause. It was true. Ever since he’d met Merlin, he hadn’t gone on any dates.
“Oh, well, if you insist, I’ll be your date tonight.” Arthur was feeling magnanimous, or it was heartburn from the poppers,
“I don't need a pity date.”
“It’s not even a real date, let alone a pity date. Now, look at me as if you’re in love with me and I’ll lie about how much I like you. Then we can go have disappointing sex.”
“I doubt sex with you would be disappointing,” muttered Merlin.
“Nothing, darling,” Merlin smiled and took Arthur’s hand. “So, if this was a real date, how would you play it?”
“I’d definitely not bring you here,” Arthur ran his thumb over Merlin’s knuckles. “Real dates deserve a proper restaurant, then a romantic stroll, maybe a nightcap somewhere with dancing.”
Merlin smiled. “Sound’s like a good time.”
“I’m all about a good time,” Arthur smirked. “What about you? If this was your real date?”
Merlin shrank back slightly. “Actually? This. Just sitting, talking.”
“No wonder you haven’t had a date lately.”
“Only since I met you.”
“I’ve never cockblocked you.”
“You’ve never been my wingman anyway.”
They both fell silent, considering their friendship. Merlin went pale.
“Arthur. I think we’ve been dating each other.”
“No, we haven’t.”
“But out lack of-”
“Trust me, if I’ve taken you on a date, you’ll know.”
“No Merlin. We haven’t been dating.” He threaded their fingers together. “But we can start now if you want?”
“Finish this pint then a romantic stroll?”
Arthur tilted his head and smiled. “I was thinking more along the lines of quick blowie in the loo, another round then back to mine for a lot of sex.”
Merlin practically dragged Arthur to the toilets.