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Night Ambience

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Cotton candy has always tasted strange to Mikleo with its pure, whipped sugar that melts as soon as it hits his tongue. It has always been weird to him to expect himself to consume something that is so feathery and sandy. He loves it, though; he gets a cone of it every year Sorey drags him to the annual fair. He loves everything and anything sweet. 

Which is exactly why he’s here.

“Stop that. You look like you’re five.”

Sorey’s lips zip closed. The white puff of his breath mists away in front of his red nose. His shoulders bunch up under his jacket as he ducks the lower half of his face behind his scarf. “W-what?”

Mikleo smiles. He places another piece of pink, swirly sugar in his mouth and elbows Sorey’s side. “I’m joking, you dork.” 

“Oh.”

Sorey scratches the back of his head. A sheepish smile spreads across his face.

Mikleo turns to look out at the twinkling polka-dot lights that glisten up and down the boardwalk. He has such a warm feeling in his chest; everything feels rather hazy. Maybe the sugar is melting into his bloodstream; maybe it’s affecting his head. 

They take a step forward.

“We’re next.”

Mikleo turns forward. “It’s too much to hope that I could take this up with me, huh?”

The corner of Sorey’s mouth peeks above his scarf. “Probably.”

Mikleo fists his hand in the remainder of cotton candy in the bag and stuffs it in his mouth. Sorey laughs at the round bubble of his cheeks and Mikleo shoves the emptied clear plastic in his chest. The trash can lid at the end of the queue swings closed with a ker-clunk after Sorey tosses it.

The attendant unclips the rope. “All right. Step on up.”

Sorey makes a sound high in his throat, holding his fists at the level of his chest. His knees kick up high as he launches himself up the platform steps. “C’mon, Mikleo!”

Mikleo rolls his eyes and stuffs his sticky hands in the pockets of his jacket.

The steel guard-rail is locked to the side of their Ferris wheel cab. Sorey claps his hands as they rock before they finally, slowly, begin to move. 

“Mikleo, look!” 

“Sorey, didn’t the sign say to keep arms and legs inside the cab at all times?”

“C’mon! Can’t I be excited about something? Ladylake looks so beautiful from here!”

Mikleo smilingly relents. His eyes follow the long line of Sorey’s arm as it stubbornly sticks out over the safety bar. He crosses his own arms and smiles into the gentle wind toying with his bangs. 

The water is dark and smooth under the night sky. Under the silvery moonlight, the mountains in the distance around the lake look like the humpbacks of slumbering giants. The city itself sparkles with tiny fairy-lights. The far-side cathedral has a round dias of painted glass illuminated from within; its tall archways yawn with dangling lanterns at their throats. Mikleo can see the Roundtable Palace from here, too, tucked further back in the higher district, with its stretching windows lit with rosy yellow.

Mikleo breathes in and let his lungs swell as big as they can. He thinks the near-spring crisp air tastes better on his tongue than any cotton candy, and far less strange, too.

Now are you happy I dragged you to the Ferris Wheel? Or are you gonna tell me off for that, too?”

Mikleo chuckles and shakes his head. Sorey’s eyes are two pools of forest green in the night. Mikleo thinks he’s very much in love tonight, though the truth is he is always in love. He thinks he has been his entire life. “No.”

“No what? No, you’re not happy? Or no, you’re not gonna--”

“--come here, you dork.”

Mikleo laughs and cups the back of Sorey’s head. His chilled fingers dig into messy brown hair; he pulls his boyfriend’s lips down onto his. Sorey’s mouth melts into a smile and like putty, Mikleo lets Sorey push him back against the weathered plastic cushion. The Ferris cab idly swings.

Mikleo thinks neither cotton candy nor the wind of a beautiful night could compare to the taste of Sorey.