Originally I was going to write a one-shot and get on with life. And then the world made itself on it's own and I have an entire AU-verse on my hands. So… expect more stories after this one~
If Arthur was ever going to write a personal memoir, this is exactly where he would start. With a Frenchman groping him, suffocating between a pair of large Ukrainian breasts and a failing band on the side.
As much as it might sound like the luckiest day of Arthur's life, in all reality, it was most likely the worst. The only reason he was in this situation because of a misjudging of just how feral his guitar was, just how wild Gilbert's vocals were and just how fragile the best speakers Harrods's had in stock. Looking back, perhaps they should've bought the speakers instead of testing them in the middle of the store.
Maybe that was why he found himself working in Risqué, London's newest and best French restaurant, with above-average pay and a vague hope that maybe if he worked for the next five years of his sorry life working he might have a vague hope of paying of an eighth of the speakers.
Sighing, Arthur bumped his head against the outside wall of the restaurant. Beside him, Gilbert was fiddling with his iPod, the large headphones around his neck quiet for once as he listened to the Brit complain.
"You're so lucky your parents bought you out of this one Gil…"
"It's your fault Artie, you were the one who said you could handle sound control."
"I follow Eddie's directions to a fucking T and now I'm sitting here in a waiter's uniform serving British people French food and pretending to be polite."
"I'm not gonna beat up Eddie over this one. Ivan would kill me."
"Mathias is the lucky one… he wasn't even there."
"Lucky? He was recovering from a shiner he got from getting into a fight with Bernie."
"Shit, those two don't get along…"
"This coming from you? When was the last time you said something polite to Al?"
Arthur got to his feet, fixing the cuffs of his white shirt and then adjusting the apron around his waist. "My break's over." He said, brushing his pants free of dust and grim from the old London alley. Gilbert nodded, straightening from his relaxed position on the wall, shaking his military jacket of fog and rain. "Pick me up at six okay? Still don't have my car back."
Bumping fists with Arthur and then pulling on his headphones, Gilbert gave a lazy salute, starting down the alley. After a deep breath to prepare himself, Arthur slipped back into the restaurant. It was bustling with activity, the kitchen working like a hive, getting instruction from the sous-chef (the head chef was still in Paris) as they made plate after plate of the French food.
Toris, the headwaiter, was currently taking orders, looking even more stressed than usual as he tried to take down the complicated requests. Arthur was glad he was doing that job, the first time the Englishman had attempted to take someone's order he had almost ended up punching the customer. Suffice to say, the Lithuanian had stepped in before things got violent and now Arthur was only a busboy.
As Arthur tried to slip by the kitchen without being noticed, an angry voice called at him almost at once. "Kirkland! You English bastard," Sighing, Arthur straightened and was met with a very angry Chinese sous-chef shaking a ladle at him, long hair pulled back and amber eyes sparking dangerously, "I said your break was five minutes! Not ten! If you want this job you better go out and help Katya right now!"
Before Arthur could respond, a rather excited boy pitched in from the dish pit, grinning widely. "Push-up bras were invented in Korea!" He was quickly silenced as he narrowly avoided getting clocked by a ladle. "Eeeh, bro, watch out!"
Wang Yao, sous-chef of the restaurant seemed to have developed a grudge against Arthur the moment he applied for a job. Something about his eyebrows being too bushy or something, Arthur had learned within the first hour of working to just ignore the man and focus on his work. His cousin was the opposite and seemed to be friends with everyone who came within shouting distance. Arthur was not sure which one was more annoying.
"Arthur!" He turned around and barely avoided being knocked over by a small blond woman. She was almost in tears as she loaded food onto her tray, her expansive chest somehow managing to stay out of the way. "лаятися" She whispered when she realized that her hands were full and a single plate lie abandoned on the counter. Her lower lip trembled.
Not keen on seeing Katya breakdown, Arthur hurried over and picked up the plate. "What table?" He said, focusing to keep his sight up -the one time his eyes had wandered he hand learnt just how good Yao's aim with his ladle was.
Her face broke into a grateful smile and Arthur couldn't help but blush. "Five, then clean table three, they had twins there. There's pâté everywhere." Katya's hourglass form kept the eyes of most of Risqué's cliental as she winded through the tightly knit tables. Sighing, Arthur quickly followed after her, muttering half formed apologies to the outraged people who had been waiting an entire hour for the Moules à la crème Normade and Matelote before hurrying away, wiping goose fat off the booth, growling quietly.
"Be sure to get all of it." A voice reminded him cheerfully. He looked up to see a tall brunette grinning down at him, a single flower in her shiny hair, holding it out of her vibrant green eyes. Elizaveta, hostess of Risqué and the owner's wife, was smiling at him, ruffling his hair fondly. "Bonnefoy's flight came in today, he should be here soon and we want everything to look as nice as it can."
Arthur pulled back, examining the booth before looking at the hostess. "So he's actually French?"
"As French as they come."
"Great." Arthur sighed and the Hungarian laughed quietly, covering he mouth with her hand, ring flashing in the bright light for a moment, "Just what I wanted, a Frenchman ordering me around."
The woman raised an eyebrow as they both headed to the front of the restaurant. The rush of people had slowed down slightly and a quiet buzz filled the air. "What were you expecting when you because a waiter at a place called Risqué? Brazilians?"
Rolling his eyes as Elizaveta punched his shoulder, Arthur wandered to the back, slipping into the kitchen, trying to look busy so as not to get in trouble with Yao though that only lasted for a few minutes once he ended up tripping someone. Forced to hide behind the bar with the cross-dressing bartender, Arthur spent a few good minutes bothering Toris with Feliks until Katya suddenly poked her head around the corner from the back, indicating that Arthur should follow.
Taking a quick drink of bourbon and thanking the Pole, the English snuck into the back. "What is it?" He asked, lowering his voice automatically when he saw that the entire kitchen staff had stopped moving, all standing at attention while Yao walked down the line, examining each one, adjusting their uniforms.
Toris followed in behind Arthur, fiddling nervously with his jacket. "Mr. Bonnefoy has arrived." He informed quietly. Katya gasped, quickly adjusting her headband, looking extremely nervous.
Arthur merely shook his head. "I really don't see what the big deal is." he said, walking out and looking from behind the door hiding the back. No one who looked vaguely French seemed to be there. Turning back to Toris, he folded his arms over his chest, "Really, he's just a stupid Frenchman. I bet he's not even from France! He's probably one of those Franco-Swiss hybrids which means he'll be thrifty and snooty!"
His fake enthusiasm suddenly broke as hands crawled around his front, hugging his hips. "And just who is this charming young man?" a voice purred into his ear, "I rather like him."
Turning around, Arthur almost jumped a foot in the air. A tall blond grinned down at him, blue eyes sparkling. Behind him, Arthur heard the staff take in a collective breath and suddenly the urge to punch the man died down. This was Francis Bonnefoy. The best French cook (according to Toris and Elizaveta) in the entire world.
"I-I'm Arthur Kirkland." As he said this, Francis took a step towards him, smiling widely. Automatically backing up, Arthur turned slightly just as Katya was taking a step forward. His first thought was something along the lines of demanding five dollars from Alfred because they were real. The second was blurred as hands suddenly wrapped around him, hugging him against a fit body.
"Oui… I definitely like him~"
This was a second request fill on the WtFcomm, it was evokers and the request was "AU. arthur gets a christmas job as a waiter in a new fancy french restaurant in london & francis is the head chef. hilarity & gay romantic hijinks ensue."
Suffice to say, I was happy~