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Passion part 6 by Fantasy Weaver
1: some adult content ahead.
After making sure the cape had been properly positioned over his client’s body, the barber straightened, placing his hands on the back of the chair.
"So, how are we cutting this?" he asked the standard question.
Nicolas looked at the platinum haired man in the mirror. "I guess I just want to tidy it up a bit; you know a trim I guess."
Jasper resisted the urge to roll his eyes. ‘Why can’t they ever give me a straight answer? Why can’t they say they want a crew cut, or a flattop, or a flair for all I care, just be more specific for the love of-’ was the ranting that was taking place in Jasper’s head. He didn’t let his irritability show on his face however, as he had to deal with this every day. To the people in his shop, he looked to be as patient as a saint.
"Could you maybe," he started, "you know, be a little more specific?"
Nicolas didn’t let his own surprise show in his face at the comment. Be more specific? Wasn’t ‘a trim’ specific enough? "What do you mean?" he asked, taken aback by the demand.
Jasper proceeded to point at a chart on one of the walls. There was an array of different men’s styles from the fifties to the present day. They seemed to cater to any and every generation in here.
"Pick one of those that’s closest to what you usually have" the barber explained.
Sebastian continued watching the exchange in silence, glancing over at Scarlet who was taking in the shop. Curiously, the raven asked:
"You’ve probably never been in a barbershop right?"
The woman turned her gaze to him and shook her head. "Nope. My dad just let my mom buzz his hair at home. It was cheaper for them, and I have no brothers. So yeah, never actually been in one like this." As she finished her sentence, Scarlet let her green eyes rove the interior of the shop again.
Letting his own eyes take in the barbershop, Sebastian thought back to his first time in it. How nervous he had been, how he felt like he was going to pass out. It was all flowing back to him.
During this time, Jasper had started working on Nicolas’ hair. The man had chosen a medium length ivy, and the snow skinned barber was making short work of the golden strands. He had passed a clipper around the sides, with the appropriate guard of course, and was now snipping the top down.
A few more minutes passed in which Kent had finished with his client. A moment later, the cape was whisked off Nicolas and Jasper brushed him down.
"I hope you like it" the man said as he checked his handiwork one last time.
"It looks good!" the blue eyed man commented with a grin. Now he felt bad for having mistrusted Jasper in the first place.
"Since you like it so much," Jasper then said, "I recommend coming back every two to three weeks to have it cut again."
Nicolas hadn’t actually planned on coming back again, as this had been a detour, but the prospect didn’t sound so bad. He readily accepted.
Sebastian and Scarlet got off their seats as Nicolas came to join them. The raven just finished saying his thanks for having them help him out that day, when two strong hands grabbed his shoulders. He jumped slightly, turning to see Jasper at his back.
"Your turn" were the teasingly spoken words.
Sebastian was about to apologize to his friends but Scarlet threw him a knowing look. "See you guys" she called, grasping Nicolas and pulling him towards the door.
Sebastian had to smile at this. She still knew him like the back of her hand.
The paintings were done.
They were beautiful.
Sebastian shook his head. ‘Admire them later’ he admonished himself.
One month to go. He had plenty of time.
The next big step was already being taken care of. His wood had been cut to size and the glue was currently drying, as well as being held in place by screws (which he would need to cover with wood paste). A few more hours and he could get to sanding the rougher bits and painting the installation white.
For now, he could give himself the luxury of simply sitting down and relaxing for a while. So as he collapsed into a chair and got comfy, he pulled his headphones over his head. As he was about to start his playlist, a knock resonated in his studio.
With a groan, he got up and opened the door.
He was met with the sight of Charlie, Vanessa, Alex and Leah. Of the four, only Leah seemed to be in good spirits; that of course was no surprise, as the three others didn’t like Sebastian to begin with. The fact that they were all here probably meant that this was an important meeting.
"What is it?" he asked with a "get right to it’ tone.
Charlie pushed her glasses up her nose, irritation present in her eyes. "It’s about your installation." As she said this, Charlie made to push through the door.
Not one for having his piece ruined by invading eyes, Sebastian pushed her out and followed suit, closing the door behind him.
"Hey!" she complained, but the raven ignored her.
"You don’t need to see the installation to ask me about it" he explained patiently.
Alex sent a look to the girl that was a warning to not continue complaining. "Helen and John just told us about you taking an entire room in the gallery for your installation."
Sebastian resisted the urge to roll his eyes. It was no surprise that they would come knocking over something as trivial as gallery arrangements.
"I had already informed them that I would need a room to myself. Besides, it’s not like there isn’t enough space for everyone" the raven said in the most patient voice he could muster.
"The point is," Vanessa took on, "You should have informed us first."
There was tense silence, in which Sebastian mentally slapped himself for forgetting such a thing; it was always of utmost importance to inform the lead group of things like financing situations or, in this case, gallery arrangements.
But then Leah piped up, "Actually, Sebastian did tell me-"
"Then why didn’t you tell us?" Charlie asked with that bossy tone of hers.
"I did, you just never listen when I talk…" the quiet girl retorted gently.
All three other students seemed taken aback by this, and there was a sudden look of apology on their face.
Alex addressed Sebastian. "We’ll be leaving then."
Just as he said, they wandered away into the hallway, leaving only Leah and Sebastian by his studio door.
After the three had vanished, leaving the blonde girl behind without a second thought, the raven turned towards her.
"You lied" he said simply.
In reality, Sebastian had never told Leah about how he would be taking a room to himself in the gallery. He had never even mentioned it around her. Why would she say such a thing?
She smiled at him. "I didn’t want you to get into trouble with them. So I just made it up."
Grey eyes widened in wonder. "You didn’t have to lie for me."
"You’re right" she admitted. "I didn’t have to. But I…I wanted to."
The man recalled that Leah had confessed her liking for him a while back. He connected what she had said to what she had just done for him. It made sense. Still, he was surprised the blonde girl hadn’t just forgotten about him entirely. He smiled.
Even after all this, she still blushed when he expressed his gratitude. "It’s nothing really!"
"How much is this going to cost you?" Sebastian asked with suspicious slits as his eyes.
"Don’t worry about how much it’ll cost; I’ll have enough. You deserve it anyway; always working in that studio all day every day" was Jasper’s enthusiastic response.
The couple was currently being ushered to their table at a fancy restaurant. Sebastian had been shocked when they had arrived. Jasper told him it had taken him many tries to get a reservation, and he could clearly see why.
They were sat down and the barber ordered some wine for them. The raven had been so shocked when he had arrived home and his lover was already telling him to get into something fancy; that they were going out to eat. He couldn’t say that he hadn’t enjoyed seeing Jasper in the middle of shaving as he arrived, nor could he say that he hadn’t appreciated the sight of him splashing some aftershave on his freshly shaved face, and even the sight of him in those black slacks was mouth-watering, but he had been unready.
It had taken them twenty minutes tops to get ready and to arrive here. It had all happened so quickly, and Sebastian had been too tired to even question Jasper and his impromptu date night arrangements.
But as the man had said; the raven HAD been working non-stop for two -almost three- months. He supposed a little relaxation was due. Though he had to admit, even if this "relaxation" was something as simple as Jasper giving him a neck massage -and he adored those- it would have been fine. This outing in a luxury restaurant was a little extravagant, but he wasn’t about to decline it.
So it was with a content sigh that Sebastian smiled at Jasper. He just hoped that an expensive dinner wasn’t the only thing he would be getting tonight. His darkened grey eyes roved down his lover’s clothed chest, undressing him in his mind.
As though sensing what the other man was thinking, Jasper smirked seductively. "Don’t tell me you want to skip to desert right away?" he teased.
A scoff emitted from Sebastian’s mouth, though the light pink tint to his cheeks gave him away. "I wouldn’t want your reservation to be in vain, so we’ll save desert for home."
The waitress came back with the wine and proceeded to pour them glasses. Both Jasper and Sebastian noticed how she was eyeing them, so when she had left, they made eye contact and stifled their laughter.
"So," Jasper started, trying to reign in his light laughter, "how much do you bet she’s going to leave her phone number on the bill?"
Yes, it had happened on two occasions since they had been together. Having admiring glances from women -and even men- when going out was a normal occurrence, but on the occasion they did leave their numbers in obvious places, it was needless to say Jasper and Sebastian had found it hilarious. If only they knew.
"I bet she won’t because she’s hoping we’ll ask for it before she can" Sebastian answered, tucking a lock of hair behind his ear.
The barber thought of something then. "By the way, I have to give you those sponsorship papers. I was able to get a few donations as well."
Sebastian had nearly forgotten about that. "That’s great!" More conversation ensued afterwards.
Dinner was good. The wine had been exquisite, the food delicious and the service incredible. Even if the cost of it all had put a hole in Jasper’s wallet, nothing drastic, but a hole just the same, it had been worthwhile. And as Sebastian had predicted, there was no number to be found on the receipt other than the cost of their meal.
The apartment was as they had left it when the raven had arrived earlier that evening. After having removed their footwear, Sebastian proceeded to get rid of the constrictive clothing on him. A blissful sigh left his mouth when his pants were blessedly off his legs.
The barber laughed at his lover. "You just can’t wear pants around me can you?" was the sarcastic remark.
"Shut up. If I could, I wouldn’t wear any at all."
Jasper’s eyes darkened. "I wouldn’t mind that one bit."
The two men looked at each other, and then they raced to their bedroom, pinning each other down on the mattress as only two rowdy men could.
When Sebastian was finally asleep, Jasper let his mind wander.
In truth, the dinner that night had not entirely been just for the sake of spending time together.
For some time now, ever since he started to work on his project, Sebastian seemed to have been more distant with him. Maybe it was just an impression though, since tonight, the raven had been perfectly fine. He had seemed normal, not absent minded or uninterested.
But there were still times though, the barber had to admit, that his lover was less enthusiastic. The refusal, or rather, the outright demand to not cut his long hair, was a bit unusual. The man would always be willing. The times he would let his hair grow long, however rarely, was under the pretense of having better sensations when getting rid of it all. And he would ALWAYS express that desire to Jasper.
Not this time though.
Was he over-thinking things? Maybe Sebastian thought the barber simply knew by now what it would mean for him to grow his hair. Maybe Sebastian was expecting him to know.
Still, there was that one time he went to his studio…
He wouldn’t think about that time.
His hand rubbed circles on his lover’s shoulder as this one slept soundly.
His hair was getting to be a pain.
‘Patience is a virtue’ he told himself. How coincidental he would think such a thing while working on his masterpiece.
His dark hair was now well past his shoulders in terms of length, and Sebastian had to constantly keep the strands back with his bandana while working. It was an annoyance, irritating really, but it had to be done. He had to keep his hair this way, if only for a few more weeks. Then…
Then would come, but for now, focus.
Nicolas had come by earlier that day to help him paint and install a few things onto the altars. The large pieces of his work were now ready to be sent to the gallery. Since the rest of the things needed to be done were not possible to do right away, he would have to schedule time at the gallery to put his things up "in situ".
There was one thing he could do at the moment.
Sebastian had assembled every single note, sketch, odd drawing in his notebooks, words and any other thing pertaining to his project into one -fat- book. Inside, not only were theses things there, but blank pages as well, to serve another purpose.
The raven smiled while flipping the numerous pages. In the three months he had dedicated to his piece, he had done more brainstorming than ought to be healthy. At any time, he could find himself scribbling on a sheet of paper. It was unconscious really. Just like it was unconscious for Jasper to analyze a person’s head of hair. Okay, maybe that was also true for himself.
Well, it was the end of his day, so he would get his things together and leave for his apartment. Or maybe he would stop by the barbershop. As long as the urge to hack his hair off didn’t grab hold of him, he would be fine.
As he slid the sleeves of his leather jacket over his arms, he remembered he had to give the sponsorship papers to the student in charge of his group. Nathan should still be in his own studio at this time, so the raven made his way there.
The man didn’t need to knock on the door as he got there, as it had been left ajar, letting him see that Nathan was indeed still there.
"Hey" he called out to the man.
Nathan turned around, landing his brown eyes on his classmate. His caramel colored hair swayed a bit from its usual bed-head style as he moved. Hm, definitely a salon… "Sebastian. I was sure you’d still be slaving away in your studio" the bigger man commented as he wiped his charcoal covered hands on a rag.
Sebastian moved closer to the other. "No, I was just about to leave, but then I remembered this" he said as he held up the papers for the sponsors.
"Ah, yeah, I almost forgot about that too. Thanks, man." He was about to grasp the sheets in his hand, but the raven moved them out of his reach, pointedly looking at his black fingers. "Woops" Nathan intoned sheepishly.
"I’ll just leave them with your stuff" Sebastian reassured, setting the papers with Nathan’s bag.
After the exchange, Sebastian went out of the university to his car. Once he got in, he turned the engine on and made his way to Jasper’s barbershop.
Once parked near the shop, Sebastian locked the door to his vehicle and headed for the door. As he passed in front of the shop, he smiled. The place hadn’t changed really in the last five years -almost six now that he thinks about it. The same glass window, the same barber pole, the same door with the opening hours written on it, with the tiny bell at the top of the door. It was still just like his obsessive days of peeking in the shop as a teenager.
Opening the door, the characteristic jingle of the bell was not heard, as there was another, much louder, sound drowning it out.
Sebastian had to smile a bit at what he saw in the shop. Jasper was standing in front of his barber chair (Kent was no where to be seen, so he was probably sick or had something to do that day), with a man right beside him, and a small child in the chair.
The boy was the one giving off those loud cries from atop the booster bench Jasper had placed on the chair. Poor kid looked absolutely horrified and angry at the barber. The man beside him, presumably the child’s father, was looking like he would rather be anywhere but here.
"Sorry about him, he’s never been in a barbershop before" the father apologized miserably.
Jasper did the amazing and laughed. He put one of his large hands on the other man’s shoulder. "This kind of thing happens all the time with kids. Don’t worry."
The man sighed in relief. His son continued crying as loudly as possible.
Jasper gave the man a push. "Go sit in the waiting area. I’ll take care of your son. He’ll get that short back and sides you wanted."
"Thank you." Sebastian saw the father take a seat in the chairs at the other end of the shop.
From the corner of his eye, Sebastian saw Jasper waving at him. He waved back with a smirk, and then proceeded to seat himself beside the boy’s father.