Chapter Six

Squall didn't want to go to work the next day, but knew that if he didn't it would be another black mark against his name.  He couldn't believe the way he'd run the night before, all because of some fruit from his past had come back into his life.  And how could he be sure that those eyes and his stalker's eyes were one in the same?  Sluggishly he got up out of bed then sleepily pulled on his usual wear, a pair of black, leather pants, a black bolero jacket and his black combat boots.  He looked in the mirror and groaned at his hair, he had no idea why he even bothered; it was never going to sit the way he wanted it to.  He yawned, went into the bathroom to brush his teeth and wash his face.  He looked in the mirror confused, there was something different, he walked again then frowned, oh that's right, no one had returned home with him the night before.  He shrugged then exited the apartment, he had half an hour to get to work and the traffic was usually horrendous at this time of the morning.

Irvine opened the door to the restaurant and walked in frowning, why was no one around? He thought to himself, sure it was early, but usually someone was around, he moved to close the door but was stopped by a pale hand.

"…" Squall said before walking into the restaurant.

"Hello Squall, you're early today." Irvine greeted the dark haired boy, suddenly very happy.

"Yeah, well you made it perfectly clear yesterday that if I didn't grow up you'd be firing me," Squall muttered before heading into the kitchen, otherwise ignoring the Galbadian.  Irvine frowned after him, his mind ticking over, //What have I

done now? // He asked himself silently before following Squall into the kitchen.

"Is everything okay?" He asked worried.

"…" Squall looked at him before turning away and getting the kitchen in order.

"Why aren't you talking?" Irvine asked.

"…Do I have to?"

"Well no, but are you sure that everything's okay?" Irvine said backing down from Squall's cold gaze.

"…//Oh yeah everything's peachy, I'm lusting after my boss and I have a madman stalking me, never been better.//…" Squall told him before turning back to his work.  Irvine just sighed and left the kitchen.

He grinned as Squall entered the restaurant, it had been by chance the night before that he'd seen Squall walking home; he'd followed the boy and had stayed at the hotel across the road for the night.  He had woken up about six and had started his vigil on the apartment across the street.  At eight Squall had left and he'd followed him.  He was certain that Squall hadn't sensed him, and had smiled when he'd barged into the restaurant, but had quickly frowned when he'd seen the familiar butterscotch hair.  He checked his watch, 9.00, he'd been standing outside the restaurant for half an hour, only three hours till the restaurant was open then he could give Squall the surprise of his life.  Chuckling he turned and left, he might as well do some sightseeing for the next three hours, he had nothing else to do.

Irvine watched Squall as he worked as though he was on automatic.  He sighed and decided it was time for him to start acting like a boss.

"Squall I want to talk to you," He told the brunette moving to a booth in the back corner waiting for Squall to come over.

"Yes sir," Squall muttered taking a seat opposite him.

"Okay enough of this Monosyllabic shit Squall," Irvine burst out, unable to keep his manager cool, he felt this was a situation that needed a friend more than a boss, "what in gods name is the problem?"

"Are you asking me this as my boss sir?" Squall asked coldly.

"No I'm not, I'm asking as a possible friend, I am you're friend aren't I Squall?"

"With all due respect sir, no you are not my friend, I don't need friend's, it's none of your business what's wrong with me." Squall burst out coldly before abruptly getting up and leaving a very disheartened Irvine behind.

He checked his watch and smirked, noon, the store would be open now.  He started walking across town and arrived at the restaurant in half an hour.  He stepped inside and waited at the entrance for the maitre' de to acknowledge him.

"Good afternoon sir, a table for one?" the man asked him politely.

"Yes, thank you." He returned smiling, happy at the level of service; he quickly sat at a table in the back in shadow and smirked, the perfect position.

"Here's a menu sir, we'll send a waiter you're way in just a minute." The maitre' de smiled.

"Thank you." He nodded then looked down at the menu.  The chicken breast fillet would do him very nicely he decided, but kept his head down; he didn't want Squall to see him yet.

Squall walked up to the table not seeing the customer.  He put on a fake smile and greeted the customer brightly.

"Good Afternoon Sir, how may I help you today?" He asked.  The man then looked up at him and smiled ferally.  Squall felt his eyes widen, he knew those eyes and that hair, he knew this man sitting at the table, and he took an automatic step backwards hitting another table.

"Hey watch it," the customers at the table sneered, Squall quickly apologized but still looked at his stalker.

"Better be careful Squall," the man hissed so that only Squall heard him, "don't want to get fired now do you?"

Squall didn't think, he was vulnerable anyway with no weapon at his side, he didn't have the martial arts skills his friend Zell had so there was nothing for him to do but run, and he did, he raced out of the restaurant his face pale and his steel eyes dark knocking over table's and people till he was out on the street.

Irvine looked up at the commotion and frowned when he saw it was Squall, he looked at the table Squall had been serving and frowned at the startled red haired man.

"Are you okay sir?" Irvine asked calmly, wondering what had set Squall off.

"I'm fine, but what's wrong with your waiter?  Is it really wise hiring mentally unstable staff sir," the stranger asked quietly before getting up and leaving the restaurant coolly.  Irvine frowned then left the restaurant, Squall would tell him what had set him off, and he would make him.  He quickly made his way to Squall's apartment and knocked on the door.

"Who is it?" Squall's voice called out uncharacteristically frightened.

"It's Irvine." Irvine called, waiting impatiently for his employee to answer the door.

"Come in," Squall said softly opening the door to let him in.

"Are you going to tell me what that was about?"  Irvine asked stepping into the apartment, he made a cursory sweep and smiled softly, exactly how he imagined Squall's place to be, neat and impersonal.

"Why don't you sit down?" Squall offered motioning towards the couch in front of the entertainment unit, "do you want something to drink?"

Irvine sat down looking confused and nodded his head, he hadn't expected Squall to be so accommodating, "just a coffee."

Squall nodded his head then made his boss his coffee and made himself a cup of coffee as well.  He then took a seat besides Irvine and handed the other boy his coffee.  "Are you sure about this?"

"Yes I'd like to know what set you off today." Irvine told him seriously.

"It's a long story," he smiled then got comfortable and started to explain, from the beginning.