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seiferzell

Of Weeds and Seeds, Chapter Three

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Aug. 1st, 2015 | 11:46 pm
posted by: skittles4zell in seiferzell

Title: Of Weeds and Seeds
Rating: NC-17
Characters: Seifer/Squall, Seifer/Zell, Irvine/Selphie, Fujin, Raijin, Rinoa, and other miscellaneous characters
Word Count: 2,030 / 6,380 (chapter/total)
Tags: AU, cheesiness, drama, fluff, friends to lovers, language, professional relationship to romantic relationship, romance, sexual tension
Summary:  Selphie is inappropriate, and Zell invites Seifer over for dinner.
Notes: The cheese factor is strong in this chapter, and I have no regrets.
Previous chapters: one, two
P.S.: I don’t know if any of y’all would be interested, but I recently created a Twitter page in an effort to keep myself active within the fandom. If you’d like, you can follow it at seifer_zell. Nothing too fancy, just random prompts and adventures in Seifer/Zell writing. :]


After about a week of avoiding Selphie, Zell agreed to meet up with her for overpriced coffee downtown. He knew she had questions to ask, wanting nothing more than to pry into his life and get him talking about something scandalous. She was his best friend, and he loved her dearly. But honestly, he was still grieving the death of his grandfather. On top of that, he was adjusting to his new home. It was foreign, despite its familiarity. Zell was able to work through the toughest part of his mourning, pouring himself into unpacking and moving into the home. He’d done it all alone, citing that he needed time and space to process this new chapter of his life.

Zell was beginning to think he’d made her suffer long enough without him and his life details. Thus, he found himself fiddling with the cardboard of his hot drink, listening politely as she rambled on about Irvine and his work drama.

“So,” Selphie began, ready to dive into Zell’s business. She nudged his leg with her foot under their table, “what’s going on with Seifer?” She was now leaning forward on her elbows, greedy for information.

“Seifer?” Zell repeated, and the name sounded foreign, despite the work the landscaper had accomplished. The grass was cut, the hedges were trimmed, and the kudzu was a distant memory for now, until it would grow its way back up the trellis. But this was not information Selphie was interested in. She wanted more. She wanted to know if there was anything blossoming with Seifer. The pun was not lost on Zell.

“Yeahhhh, Seifer! The major hottie who’s been toiling away in your yard. I did a slow drive-by the other day. It looks great.”
“You’re such a stalker,” he said, slightly annoyed.

She shrugged, impervious to the insult. “Spill.”

Zell legitmately didn’t have juicy gossip to “spill.” Seifer had the code to get past Zell’s security gate, so he hadn’t needed to be home while he and his team were doing their work. Zell was able to keep his normal schedule at the kickboxing gym he co-owned. For the most part, Seifer and his crew were gone by the time Zell made it home. In the few times they’d seen each other, they exchanged simple courtesies. Hey, how’s it going? Great, yeah. The yard looks awesome. Thanks, see ya.

Yeah, the guy was hot, and Selphie wasn’t a mind reader, but she knew Zell thought so. But physical attraction only went so far, and that’s all Zell had established. He did at least appreciate Seifer’s work ethic, even if the jerk was still jokingly calling him ‘Princess.’

“I dunno, Selph. I got nothin’.”

“Grrrr! You’re killin’ me.” Her face scrunched into an unattractive pout.

Zell laughed. “What exactly are you looking for?”

“I don’t know. You’re single, and I’m married. I like to live vicariously through you.”

“Poor Irvine.”

“He’s fine. He’d do the same if you were straight.” Selphie sipped her green tea for a few moments. The thoughtful expression on her face worried Zell. “We gotta get some intel on him. Figure out his story.”

“Selphie, I’m not creeping on the landscaper.”

“Of course not. We’ll make it very normal, non-creepy.”

Zell had the image of her in all black, sneaking down from the guy’s attic Mission Impossible-style. Nothing she could say would make him feel any more comfortable about the situation.

She continued, “Y’know, make convo. Invite him inside.”

“Remember when I told you I’m not looking to date anyone right now?”

“I’m not saying you have to date. Maybe just,” she paused and leaned forward to whisper, “some 'assault with a friendly weapon.' Or a bedroom rodeo, as Irvy likes to call it.” Selphie giggled into her hand, pleased with herself.

Zell groaned, embarrassed and a little grossed out by the reference. He did not want the image of his friends having sex in his mind. “You’re insane.”

“At least I still have my courage. Coward.”

“I’m not a coward! I just think he’s straight, probably shacking up with some leggy, busty girl with blonde hair to match his.”

“Only one way to find out.”

*

The status quo in Seifer’s relationship with Squall had returned. After a surprisingly calm discussion about honesty, trust, and communication and a round of detached make up sex, things had returned to some state of normalcy. They met up for a weekly dinner with Squall’s father, and they laughed and joked in a manner that would have disintegrated any signs of trouble in paradise. Things weren’t good, but then again, they hadn’t been good in quite some time.

Regardless, Seifer was ill-prepared for the rush of attraction that swept over him when he arrived at Zell’s for their weekly appointment. He hadn’t expected him to be home, as Zell was usually absent during Seifer’s visits, but there he was, at the end of his driveway tending to his mailbox. A backwards baseball cap was atop his blond head, and a pair of baggy workout shorts sat at his hips. With Zell’s torso bare, Seifer got a good look at his sun-kissed skin and the large tribal tattoo that decorated much of his upper left shoulder. There was another tattoo spiraling down his back, and Seifer’s eyes wandered down to its ends, where it stopped right above his lower back dimples. Zell’s body was muscular without being obnoxious, and Seifer appreciated every inch of it. Seifer rolled down his window of his truck to greet him.

“Whatcha think?” Zell asked, having finished up what he’d been so seriously concentrated on. He had repainted his family name on the mailbox; the faded white paint now bright and new.

“Would look better with some flowers down at the base,” Seifer replied without missing a beat. He may have been staring, but he could still manage some professionalism.

Zell appraised the base of the mailbox and nodded with agreement. “Yeah, probably.”

“Nice hat,” Seifer told him and smiled when Zell tugged at the stray blond strands that stuck through the hole above the adjuster snaps. “It would work better if you had it on the right way. How long have you been out here?”

“Huh? How long?” Zell frowned and shifted his stance self-consciously. "Totally irrelevant."

"Not irrelevant. You're starting to burn. Means you’re on track for dehydration.”

"Thanks, Mom. What are you, a doctor now, too?" Zell scowled at the admonishment.

“Nah, the doctor gig seemed too stuffy for me,” Seifer retorted before changing the subject, “I wasn’t expecting you to be home today.”

“Eh, I had a client cancel on me. Had to reschedule his session.”

Seifer didn’t know what kind of clients Zell had, but he certainly knew what unreliable clients were like. “Well, do you want me to wait for you or can I go ahead and do my job?”

“Go ahead. I’ll meet you by the house in a minute.” He bent and began to gather his painting materials as Seifer resumed his drive up the driveway.

*

Despite Zell hovering nearby, Seifer was able to get most of his work done for the day. Zell’s yard really didn’t require much additional attention, but Seifer was gathering measurements and miscellaneous statistics he needed should Zell want a flowerbed or other decorative options. Thankfully, Zell wasn’t as distracting as Seifer thought he’d be. He asked a lot of questions, and Seifer liked that he wanted to be involved in the process.

Seifer was just about to wrap up their session and head home when his phone began to ring in his pocket. It was Squall’s tone, almost serving as a guilty reminder that he shouldn’t like anything Zell did, shirtless or not.

"Excuse me for a moment," he told Zell and stepped aside to answer his phone. "Hi, love," he greeted, happy to speak to his boyfriend despite their recent difficulties.

"Seifer, hi," Squall's voice sounded tense. "I wanted to let you know I won't be home for dinner tonight."

On the list of things Seifer appreciated about Squall was his ability to get to the point. No frivolous words or gestures. He said what he needed to say, and that was that. However, now, right here, in front of an attractive client, it bothered Seifer.
"Busy night at the classroom?" Seifer sneered into the phone. His previous joy in hearing from Squall had diminished quickly.

Zell was trying not to eavesdrop close by, but he cringed at Seifer's tone. Whoever had called Seifer must be someone important to him, if the person was able to warrant such an emotional response.

"There's a fundraising dinner tonight, remember? I'm chaperoning.”

The tall blond quickly scanned through his mental planner. A dinner? He didn't remember Squall mentioning one. A lecture here, a luncheon there. But no dinner recently. Maybe he had missed Squall telling him, between their argument and making up.

"Seifer?" Squall ventured.

"Yeah, that's fine. Sorry I didn't remember."

Squall sighed. In relief? Contempt? "It's okay. I'll be home later tonight."

"Right. Have fun."

"Mhm." And with that, his boyfriend hung up. No ‘I love you.' Not even a sincere goodbye.

Zell cleared his throat. "Everything cool, man?" He felt awkward, having unintentionally listened to the one side of the conversation. Not to mention watching Seifer’s expression go through exasperation, pain, and back to annoyance.

Seifer was rarely one to wear his heart on his sleeve, but his aggravation was apparent as he snapped, "It's fine."

Zell recoiled visibly but shrugged it off. He was only curious and didn't like seeing Seifer's good looks contorted. "My bad. Just askin'."

"Never mind. I’m nearly finished here.”

"Look, man, if you'd rather just wait till..." Zell trailed off.

"Princess," he started through clenched teeth, "I have just about all I need to wrap up here. So I’m going to finish what I need to do, whether you like it or not. You don’t even need to be out here. Go put a shirt on, get some water, whatever. I don’t care.” With this said, Seifer moved to continue his inspection. He began voicing his notes as he wrote more on his clipboard, "It probably wouldn’t hurt to come back out with the weed eater; I see where they missed some spots in through there. Also need to tackle whatever is under the porch. I’ll email - -“

"You wanna stay for dinner?" Zell blurted suddenly. He figured the only way to shut him about the damn landscape was to throw him a curveball. He hoped it wouldn't throw him into another hissy fit.

Clearly caught off guard, Seifer blinked. "What?"

Zell's face flushed, discomfited by his own nerve. Out of habit, he rubbed nervously at the back of his neck. "Well, it sounded like someone bailed on you - sorry for listening, by the way - and I thought you could use some company who isn't your girlfriend or assistant or whatever." Zell felt like he was rambling. Hell, he heard himself rambling. What was he doing? Aside from asking his hot landscaper to stay for dinner? He didn't even know if the guy was in a relationship. Probably, from the sound of his phone call. He could picture Selphie perfectly, cheering him on as he obliviously took her advice.

"Are you cooking?" Seifer's asked, amused at Zell’s sudden confidence and corresponding embarrassment. He wasn’t entirely sure about this new development, the potential of crossing into a friendly relationship with Zell. Especially when there was an attraction lingering underneath the surface.

Zell's eyes brightened. "I was going to. Or we could go out. Either way - -”

"I'd really enjoy a home-cooked meal, since it's being prepared by such a lovely princess and all."

He made a face at the nickname. "I'll cook for you as long as you don't call me that."

Seifer chuckled. "Deal. And this will give us a chance to draw out some plans for a flowerbed, if you like that idea," he tried to make this dinner seem as professional as possible. "I've got some photos in my truck."

The grin that followed was infectious. “Awesome. Come on in.”

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Comments {4}

perkyandproud

(no subject)

from: perkyandproud
date: Aug. 2nd, 2015 06:43 am (UTC)
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You know, I like to live vicariously through my friends too, but there is such a thing as Remembering it is their life, not yours! Zell isn't some video game, Selphie! (Yes, I giggled as I wrote that, LOL)

Mm, things are starting out well! At least for the yard!

*hugs you*

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