AN: Random ficlet. I don't own Professor Layton. Thanks for reading! Much love!
Luke stood in the doorway of Layton's office for several moments, hopping from one foot to the other as he tried to make up his mind. He would take one step into the room, then change his mind and back away again and hop up and down in place a bit, and then repeat the whole thing over again.
He had turned away from the door for probably the eighteenth time, then changed his mind and whirled around, determined to go in there and do what he had come here to do…only to find that the Professor was standing in the doorway with his arms folded and an amused expression on his face. "Luke, my boy, what on earth are you doing?"
Luke looked appropriately sheepish, but recovered with his usual resilience and said, "Professor, I need your help! It's an emergency!"
Layton raised an eyebrow. He was certain that whatever it was that was currently plaguing his young apprentice was quite serious to Luke's mind, but there tended to be some discrepancies between what an adult would consider to be an emergency, and what a boy of sixteen would consider as such.
"All right, my boy," the Professor agreed, gesturing towards his office. "Why don't you come in and sit down and tell me what's got you so worked up?"
Luke rushed past him and took a seat in th chair facing the desk, the one where Layton's clients usually sat while requesting his assistance on various matters. The Professor was a bit more controlled in his entrance to the room; he crossed to the desk and sat down in his chair and faced his anxious student. "All right, Luke. What's on your mind?"
Luke opened his mouth, hesitated, then blurted out, "I need to know about girls!"
…this was something Layton had been expecting to have happen sooner or later, but it still startled him a bit to have it happen so directly. "Well, what do you want to know?"
"Well…how do I talk to them?" Luke asked, now a bit more timidly. "Especially if it's a girl I really fancy?"
Ah, so that was it. It was something that Layton had noticed some time earlier, but had never said anything about it for fear of embarrassing the boy. It was difficult enough being a teenager without having to worry about things like crushes and adults being aware of them.
"Well…is there a young lady you fancy?" he asked innocently.
The reaction was priceless. Luke jumped to his feet and started waving his arms around frantically. "No! No! Not at all! I was just…just wondering, you know? Just in case there is a girl at some point! Y-yes, that's it! S-so…" he sat back down and folded his hands, looking everywhere but at the Professor, "…what do I do?"
Layton tapped his chin thoughtfully. "Well, my boy…are you wondering how to ask this hypothetical girl to accompany you out? Or just speaking to her?"
A nervous fidget. "Either, really…"
"Very well then," the Professor said with a smile. "Let's see…if I were on a mission to get a lady's attention in the romantic sense, I would make certain to be at my most polite, especially at first. I might bring her something. Flowers are usually quite acceptable. And I would carefully inquire as to whether or not it would be all right for me to accompany her. Small outings, my boy. And—"
"I've got it!" Luke jumped to his feet, a victorious expression on his face. "Thank you!"
He was out the door before the Professor could even blink, leaving the man still sitting at his desk with his mouth open, poised to speak. After a moment, the Professor turned his head and looked towards the door through which his apprentice had disappeared in such a hurry.
…teenagers, Layton decided, truly had no patience. Ah, well, it couldn't be helped. Chuckling at the whole affair, Layton turned his attention back to his work. All he could do was wait and see what came of it.
The answer came a few days later. Flora commented over breakfast that she was going to walk to the library come the afternoon; Layton himself had an errand to run, and was away from the house for a while.
When he came home, he parked the Laytonmobile and was making his way up the walk to the front stoop when he glanced down the sidewalk and saw his protégé and his ward walking together, away from the house. Luke was carrying a couple of books, tucked beneath his arm; Flora's hands were empty.
How very interesting.
Smiling, Layton opened the door and walked inside and made his way up to his room. On the way there, he passed Flora's room; the door was open. And on the dresser was a vase with a bouquet of pretty flowers. It had not been there that morning when he had left.
…how very interesting indeed.