Advent Calendar, part 9

My internet is dead again. Siiigh. My nerves are getting frazzled. It comes and goes though, so hopefully it stabilizes soon.

Onwards to the 9th installment!

9

“What?”
This evening was getting stranger and stranger.
“Like I said,” the stranger replied, still smiling. “You’ve been really good to me so far, Mizuki. I want you to give me a name.”
Mizuki set down the pot on top of the stove, blinking. “You’re not saying you don’t have a name.”
“That depends.” The redhead replied, looking thoughtful. “I have many names.”
“Then what..?”
“I’m Euphorbia pulcherrima, scientifically speaking.”
“What?” Mizuki’s eyebrow twitched. “Euphoria..?”
“Euphorbia-“
“Whatever. What kind of name is that?”
“I am also called Poinsettia, if that sounds better to you?”
“Poin….”their eyes met again.
That deep green shade in his eyes….Was it really possible that..? Mizuki pulled the emergency brake on his train of thought so hard it slammed into a hillside in the back of his mind. He was not buying into this.
“Yeah, Poinsettia, like the star of-“
“I get it!”
He felt flustered, irritation bubbling somewhere deep inside him.
“You don’t seem to like Christmas very much, Mizuki. There are no decorations or anything here…”
“Well, no. I don’t celebrate Christmas.”
“Why not?”
“Does it matter to you?”
The other man didn’t reply, but his smile faded slightly. He looked somewhat sad.
“So what, you want me to call you…Poinsettia?” he changed the subject. As insane as this whole ordeal was, he’d rather discuss someone else’s insanity than his own aversion to a popular holiday.
“That’s up to you.”
“It’s not really a name though… is it?”
“Isn’t it?”
“Maybe something simpler…?” he wasn’t sure why he was allowing himself to amuse this man. He couldn’t really look him in the eyes either. A bright red fringe fell into the man’s face. It seemed to be glittering somewhat. Mizuki swallowed. “Can I think about it for a while?”
“Think all you want,” the man, for now only known as Poinsettia replied. “I think you should eat first.”

So Mizuki prepared food, and worked on his thesis, and readied a spare bed from the futon he had brought from home. They didn’t talk much, merely exchanged good nights when the time came.

And the next morning, he was confused by how easily he had fallen asleep with a stranger in the house. He turned over on the bed, looking down at the man at the floor – still fast asleep. His long dark eyelashes were brushing over his tan cheeks – even they seemed to be glittering.
Was it really possible..? He yawned, shaking his head. No way. Things like that only happened in fairy tales. Still…. Where had Poinsettia come from? And why was it so easy to accept his presence?
Carefully, Mizuki stepped over him on his way to the bathroom, sneaking another glance at him from the corner of his eye. Regardless of who, or what he was, the redhead was certainly a striking beauty.

When he went to school that day, it was with Poinsettia’s encouraging smile wishing him a good day, and when he came home, he found that the man was still there, despite having been told to just leave the key underneath the doormat if he decided to leave.
It didn’t seem like that was his intention at all.
Once again, they sat in silence together for most of the afternoon – Mizuki prepared dinner, and the other man declined, settling for a large glass of water.
“Wanna stay until tomorrow..?” Mizuki asked tentatively when it started getting late.
He received a grateful grin in return. And smiling back, Mizuki realized that he was okay with that. “Okay,” he said. “Good.”
He shut down his computer for the evening, and started getting ready for sleep, all the while under the careful eyes of his new roommate.
“By the way…” he said hesitantly, turning to look at the redhead. “How’s Settia?”
The red haired man lit up into the widest grin yet. He reached out his hand, and grabbed Mizuki’s – the handshake was firm, warm and soft all at once. “I’m Settia, nice to meet you!”
He couldn’t help being infected by the smile. “Nice to meet you, Settia.”

**TBC**

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