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The Flannel

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Ryan and Shane had been very good at hiding their relationship, for months, in fact. Even when filming Unsolved, they had never had a slip-up, never made a single mistake. No one was suspicious when they started carpooling to work every day, no one knew that they had moved in together. They simply thought that the two lived close enough and wanted to save gas as well as have some company during the awful Los Angeles commute. Anyone would have simply assumed the two were very good friends.

Even if they had gotten into a tub together in Louisiana, zero feet apart 'cause they're (not) gay. They were just two bros. 

There wasn't really one specific reason why they kept their relationship a secret from everyone. At first, it had been because Unsolved was just starting out, and Ryan had wanted it to gain an audience because of its content, not because it featured some gay couple. But once it took off, becoming one of the more popular series on Buzzfeed, there wasn't really a reason to be quiet about it anymore. 

But the two had simply fallen into a routine, and it wasn't something that either of them brought up, so they continued as they were. 

They were also very unaware of the office gossip. 

"I swear, if I have to put up with Shane's staring at Ryan one more day, I'm going to scream," Zach complained to Eugene as he sat down at his respective desk.

"Don't say anything, Zach," Ned warned, "Even if literally everyone knows that Shane is crushing on Ryan, you can't say anything."

"Why not?" he whined, "they need a push in the right direction."

"Because even if it's obvious that Shane feels something for Ryan, it doesn't seem like it's reciprocated," Eugene stated in his matter-of-fact voice. This wasn't the first time that they had had this conversation, and it always ended with the mutual agreement that no one would say anything about Shane's probably unrequited crush, out of respect for the taller man.

When the duo arrived, Ryan looked beyond tired, plopping down into his chair. Shane simply set his jacket and keys at his desk before heading somewhere else in the office.  

"You alright dude?" Keith asked.

"Yeah, just didn't sleep well last night," he replied, logging into his computer and pulling up his email. Shane returned with two mugs of steaming coffee in hand. 

"Hey, um, got you some coffee. Two sugars, no cream." Shane gently set the mug onto Ryan's desk, before sitting in his own chair and taking a sip out of his own mug. Ryan didn't even mumble a thanks, blinking tiredly at the cup. Zach gave Ned a look, and Ned gave him a warning one back. 

When Ryan had finished the drink, Shane went and refilled it for him without being prompted, and Zach looked like he was going to die. Eugene laughed at his expression, deciding to have a little fun. 

"Hey, Ryan, would you like to get lunch with me?" Eugene asked, directing Ryan's attention over to him. Shane looked like he was ready to protest, because everyone knew that Shane and Ryan always ate lunch together, no matter what. 

"Uh, sure," he answered, and Shane did his best to hide the sour look on his face. Ned looked ready to punch Eugene, and Keith was busy looking at pictures of fried chicken. It was for a video, he swears. 

"Cool, Shane, Zach, want to come along?"

Shane visibly relaxed a bit at this, agreeing. When lunchtime rolled around, the four climbed into Eugene's car. Zach had called shotgun immediately, doing his best to foil Eugene's plan, as this forced the Unsolved duo into the back. Pulling up to a small cafe nearby, the four sat together at a booth, and a waiter came by and took their orders. They had sat with Shane and Ryan sitting on one side, with Zach and Eugene on the other. 

The food came, and as everyone dug in, it was quiet, until Eugene struck up a conversation with Ryan. 

Now, Ryan was a pretty oblivious person, especially when it came to people flirting with him. And Shane, he was what one could call a little possessive. The only time this had become quite apparently was when the two had flown out to a location, and the night before filming the two had gone to a bar. Some girl had started flirting with Ryan, and Shane had actually faked getting sick to get Ryan to take him back to the hotel. Back at the hotel, well, what happened after that was NSFW. 

"Ryan, how's your dating life?" Eugene started, feeling Zach kick him from underneath the table. He kicked back with just as much force, keeping the wide smile on his face as Zach flinched.

"Oh, you know," Ryan responded, waving his hand in the air.

"What are you doing this Friday night?" Eugene pushed, ignoring how Shane was sending daggers with his eyes. 

"I don't think I have any plans. Usually I just stay in and watch a movie," he replied, still oblivious to the fuming Shane sat next to him. 

"Would you be interested in doing something with me?" Eugene said suggestively, reaching a hand across the table to lightly brush his fingers against Ryan's arm. 

"Actually, I think you said you had plans with your brother this Friday," Shane butt into the conversation, trying to keep his tone calm, but anyone could tell the smile on his face was extremely forced. 

"Did I? Sorry Eugene," Ryan said, finally noticing how weird Shane was being, sending him a puzzled look.

"How about Saturday night?" Eugene pushed again.

"I-" Ryan started, but Shane cut him off. 

"Actually, I think Ryan's brother is coming over for the entire weekend. A whole weekend of plans, completely booked, unable to do anything else, sorry. And, looks like the weekend after that he's traveling for a shoot, and the week after that, too!" 

"Shane, are you okay?" Ryan asked, and the taller man looked really on edge. 

"Ryan, how about a weekday night, instead?" Eugene asked, running his fingers along the other man's arm.

"Stop flirting with him!" Shane finally snapped, and Ryan looked taken aback, before the realization hit him, and he pulled his arm away from Eugene's grasp. Shane shot up from the table, storming out of the cafe. Ryan gave an apologetic look, fishing some dollar bills out of his wallet before throwing them down on the table, and going after him. 

"Are you happy with yourself?" Zach asked, turning to look over at a smug Eugene.

"Extremely," he replied.


"Babe, it's okay, alright?" Ryan put a hand on Shane's arm comfortingly, but the taller man pulled away from the touch. The two were walking back to the office, as they weren't that far away. 

"Careful, someone might see," Shane snapped, and Ryan wrapped his arms around himself, hurt. The past few days had been pretty rough for Ryan, his anxiety had been acting up like crazy, and he had been having some pretty bad nightmares at night. He hadn't gotten a wink of sleep last night, and the lack of sleep was making him overly emotional. The two continued to walk in silence, not speaking to each other when they got to the office, sitting down at their desks and quietly getting back to work.

Everyone on their floor noticed the change in mood immediately. People whispered to each other, sneaking a glance at the pair. Shane looked absolutely pissed, and Ryan seemed downright uncomfortable. When Ryan asked Shane to email him a file, Shane snapped in reply, the response so loud that most of the people around them turned to look at him questioningly. 

Zach had told Ned what happened at lunch, and both were equally pissed at Eugene for whatever he had caused between the two. Eugene felt a little bad for his actions, but at the same time this was something that was going to happen eventually. Rather now, then later. 

At the end of the day, Shane and Ryan piled into Shane's car, both quiet the entire ride home. But the second they were behind closed doors, Ryan burst into tears, not being able to hold it in any longer. 

"Ryan, hey, it's okay," Shane pulled him into a hug, "I'm sorry for how I acted earlier."

"Do you still love me?"

"What? Of course I do. I was just jealous, okay? I just wish I could tell everyone about us sometimes, so that people wouldn't flirt with you," Shane confessed, pulling Ryan into a kiss. Soon enough, it got quite heated, and Shane pressed the shorter man into a nearby wall. 

That night, Ryan slept exceptionally well. 

The next morning, he groggily climbed out of bed, still sore from last night's encounters, shuffling around through his shared closet with Shane and throwing on some random clothes. He shuffled into the kitchen, starting the coffee maker, when Shane eventually joined him. Shane gave him a weird look, but was smiling brightly, as he kissed Ryan deeply.

"I love you," he said, before grabbing the pot of coffee and pouring some for himself.

"I hate you. Do you know how much pain I'm in?" Ryan whined. 

"Funny, you were saying something very different last night." Shane pecked his lips again.


Walking into the office, Ryan felt like more people were looking at him then usual, greeting him in a more suggestive tone.

"Hey, are people being weirder than normal?" he asked Shane, who just shrugged in response.

"It's Buzzfeed, maybe they're filming, 'People Try Going a Whole Work Day While High,'" he joked. 

"You're the worst," Ryan laughed in response. 

They made their way over to their cubicle formation, plopping down into their chairs and logging into their computers.

"Nice shirt, Ryan," Eugene commented, sending him a wink. Ryan looked down, ready to give a thank you, when he realized he wasn't wearing his shirt. His face grew red, and Shane noticed what was happening immediately.

"Hey, Shane, don't you have a shirt just like that one?" Zach asked.

"Ryan accidentally poured coffee all over himself in the car," Shane explained, saving the day, "and it was too late to turn around, but I have a set of spare clothes in the car, so I lent him the shirt." 

Thank God for Shane Madej. But remembering their conversation last night, Ryan felt guilty. There was no reason to keep lying about everything, right? He loved Shane, so why shouldn't the whole world know about it?

He stood up abruptly, causing Shane and the Try Guys to look at him confusedly.

"Hey everyone!" he yelled, and the entire floor turned their attention over to him.

"Shane and I are engaged!" 

And with that, he sat back down into his chair, like nothing had happened. Shane looked completely shocked, at a loss for words. People seemed confused for a mere second, before everyone started cheering. Some came over and gave them a congratulations, and Shane smiled dumbly, going with the flow. Once everything calmed down, he asked Ryan if he could have a moment, walking with him to an empty conference room where he slammed the door closed.

"Are you mad?" Ryan asked nervously.

"You want to marry me?" Shane looked vulnerable, which was a new look for him.

"Yeah. Do you?" 


Shane pushed him up against the wall again (he just really liked doing that), kissing him. The door opened, and someone cleared their throat awkwardly.

"Hey, lovebirds, this conference room is reserved." Eugene's loud voice broke them apart, and Ryan's face exploded into a blush again. In the doorway, quite a few employees stood there, eyebrows raised, but smiling nevertheless. 

"Sorry, next time I'll reserve our own," Shane replied smugly, and Ryan smacked his arm lightly.