A/N: This is from a series of shorts I refer to collectively as the College Town set. I have a couple more uploaded to my journal (link in my profile), but those have adult content, so you may or may not want to read them. They're connected loosely enough that this can probably be read as a standalone.
Even though this is a college AU, it is entirely unrelated to my high school AU.
Disclaimer: The characters in this story are from Tales of Vesperia and do not belong to me.
For the past several days, Flynn had been unable to shake the feeling that he was forgetting something. Right after class that afternoon, he'd double-checked his planner and even flipped through all his syllabi to make sure there wasn't an upcoming test or project due date he'd forgotten to copy over with all the others. He wandered through the apartment, absently straightening up as he wondered what, if anything, he could be forgetting.
About an hour later, Yuri got back from his afternoon classes, and tossed his book bag and helmet aside before dropping into a seat on the couch. "Hey."
"Welcome home. How was school?"
"Same as always." He looked around the spotless living room. "Busy day for you?"
"No. Just thinking." He took a seat beside Yuri and kissed his cheek, figuring whatever had slipped his mind couldn't be all that important.
They spent the rest of the afternoon together playing video games, trash talking and elbowing each other in the middle of rounds. The third time he lost because Yuri wouldn't sit still, Flynn lunged at him, prompting a wrestling match that sent them tumbling to the floor and only ended when someone knocked on the door. With Yuri pinned to the floor beneath him, Flynn's head whipped up at the sound.
"That must be Judy." Yuri rolled aside and went to get the door as Flynn brushed off his clothes and tried not to be too disappointed that they'd been interrupted just when he'd gained the upper hand.
"Hey, Judy." Yuri stepped aside to let her in.
"Hello. Flynn, will you be joining us for dinner?"
"What?" He looked at Yuri. "Don't you have work tonight?"
"I took tonight off. I told you, remember?"
Wondering if that was what he'd forgotten, Flynn shook his head.
Yuri and Judy exchanged looks, and Judy moved to leave. "We'd better get going, then."
"Wait. Let me get my wallet." He rarely went out with Yuri and his friends, but Flynn felt like he could do with some company after the stress of midterms.
Judy was texting when he came back, but she finished with the message after only a couple seconds, and led the way down to her car. She drove them to Schwann's, Yuri's favorite little dive of a bar, where Estelle and Rita soon joined them. When Estelle pulled Yuri into a hug before sliding into the booth across from him, Flynn felt a little jealous of their closeness. Yuri seemed to make friends wherever he went, whereas Flynn tended to have trouble cultivating those sorts of personal relationships.
A waitress came by to take their orders, and then they chatted and laughed while waiting for the food. Flynn kept mostly out of the conversation, happy enough to be out of the apartment for a little while and free of deadlines and homework and responsibilities. He even ordered a beer, since Judy was driving. Everything was fine, right up until the end of their meal when the bartender appeared at the table holding a slice of chocolate cake topped with a single sparkler candle.
"Evenin' Sunshine," he drawled, setting the cake in front of Yuri. "On the house as a special happy birthday to one of our regulars."
The whole group went still. Slowly, Estelle turned to look wide-eyed at Flynn. Everyone else avoided his gaze, including Yuri, who thanked the scruffy bartender and picked up a fork.
Obviously, that was what Flynn had forgotten, and Yuri hadn't bothered to say a damn thing. He'd even brought Flynn along to this little party knowing he would be the only person there without a clue as to what was special about the evening.
"Yeah?" He spoke around a mouthful of cake.
"Why didn't you remind me that today is your birthday?"
He shrugged and scooped up some of the icing with his index finger, holding it out to Flynn. "This is good. Try some."
Flynn knocked his hand away. "Cut it out! I asked you a question."
"Do you really want to do this here?"
With the reminder that they were in public, with Yuri's friends, at Yuri's birthday dinner, apparently, Flynn settled angrily back in his seat. He nursed his beer as the others made awkward conversation while Yuri finished his cake like he didn't even care about what had just happened.
The ride home was uncomfortably quiet, and Flynn stormed upstairs to their apartment while Yuri hung back to say thanks and goodnight to Judy. As soon as Yuri stepped inside, Flynn rounded on him.
"What the hell was that about?"
"What was what about? Your little meltdown at dinner? Got me."
"You knew I forgot, and you just let me—"
"I don't 'let you' do anything, Flynn. You're an adult; you make your own choices. Judy invited you along because she was being nice. She even tried to keep the others from saying anything when she realized, so that you wouldn't feel weird."
"So it's my fault you didn't say anything?"
Yuri stared at him. "You didn't say anything about your birthday."
"That's because you remembered!" He felt freshly ashamed as he said it.
"So, maybe your brain's just not wired that way. No need to freak out about it." He shrugged and brushed past Flynn into the apartment.
He was acting like he really didn't care, like it didn't even bother him. Thinking back, Flynn realized that before, there had always been someone around who would remind him when Yuri's birthday was coming up. This year, however, he'd been caught up in school and hadn't seen any of Yuri's friends, though it wasn't as if that was any excuse at all. Why hadn't he ever simply written it down?
"Yuri, wait." He caught up to him in the hall and grabbed his hand. "I'm sorry I forgot your birthday."
"It's fine." He started to walk away, but Flynn pulled him back.
"No, it isn't. It shouldn't be. I…. We're dating. I shouldn't have forgotten."
Grinning, Yuri ruffled his hair. "You take things way too seriously, you know that?"
Flynn sighed. Wouldn't most people be more upset by this? "I don't get you sometimes."
"That's fine. Wouldn't want to lose my air of mystery."
Grabbing Yuri's other hand, Flynn twined their fingers and leaned up against him, pushing him into the wall and leaning his head on Yuri's shoulder.
"Why did you agree to go out with me?"
Yuri shrugged. "I felt like it."
The simple answer took Flynn by surprise, and he jerked back to look Yuri in the eyes. "It was a whim?"
"It wasn't anything like that. How do I explain?" He sighed. "I was interested in you. Hadn't ever thought about someone like that before."
"You corrupted me," he said with a growing smirk. "Yeah, that's about the size of it."
"Shut up." He considered Yuri for a moment as a new thought occurred to him. "Then, if you don't normally take an 'interest' in people, do you not like to…?"
Yuri rolled his eyes. "Don't be stupid. If you're done being mad at me, I can show you how much I like to." He freed his hands and slipped them under Flynn's shirt. "Sound good?"
"Sounds very good." He tilted his chin, pressing flush up against Yuri as they kissed.
Yuri hummed his approval and pulled back just enough to murmur: "Happy birthday to me."