“Oh my god, you’re Gabriel Landeskog.”
Gabe looked up to see a brunet man standing behind the counter with a comical look of disbelief painted across his face holding a box of paper cups loosely in his nicely muscled arms.
“Uh. Mr Landeskog, sir-” The man started speaking again, the waver in his voice and shifty look in his eyes giving away his nervousness, “Can I help you with anything today.”
Gabe had come in to drop off the lunch Mel made especially for Tyson before morning practice and as a result he had had to leave far earlier than normal in order to make it into the rink at a sufficiently captainly time. Unfortunately that meant sacrificing his - while not necessarily needed - much appreciated beauty sleep.
“Just call me Gabe, or Landy, or whatever just for my sake drop the sir and the Mr.” Is the first thing that comes out of his mouth, it’s not what he had meant to say but he was tired, they’d had a bad streak of games over the past few weeks, his stupid boyfriend had forgot his stupid lunch and Bowen fucking Byram has been making him feel like a grumpy old man.
The man behind the counter let out a rather undignified squawk presumably of shock at the abrupt word. Gabe might have to talk to Tyson about some of his employee’s customer service abilities.
“Sorry kid,” Gabe offered a small tired smile, “Could I just get an Americano please. Oh and if you don’t mind I need to talk to Tys real quick.”
The cashires thin eyebrows furrowed together in a look of confusion.
“I-uh, I don’t know if i can disclose personal inf-” The man started to say, looking like it was causing him physical pain to be in this situation. Thankfully both Gabe and the brunet man were saved by the crowing of an annoyingly familiar voice.
“An americano? Really? Where’s your loyalty to Sweden?” Tyson emerged from the door to the bakery and swanned up to the counter placing a hand on the shoulder of his employee.
After years of dealing with Tyson, Gabe was well versed in the casual banter that allowed his boyfriend to endear himself so easily to anyone around him but that didn't mean his pride would allow said boyfriend to challenge the legitimacy of his national heritage.
“Oh fuck off,” Gabe said with good natured grin that didn’t seem to soften the blow of seeing an NHL captain insulting yur boss for Tysons poor employee who still stood awkwardly between them. “You’re a Canadian who willingly moved to Colorado for no good reason.”
Gabe knew exactly why Tyson had moved to Colorado - and if he was perfectly honest, thought it was a fantastic reason - but he wasn’t going to take insults of his national pride lying down.
“Kerf, why don’t you go back and help EJ out with that new pastry he's been trying” Tyson said squeezing the shoulder of his poor employee who was looking painfully awkward eyes flicking between the other two men currently occupying the coffee shop front.
“Y-yeah, i think that’s sounds like a good idea,” The man - Kerf - said ducking out from underneath the arm Tyson had slung casually across his shoulders, “Nice meeting you Mr Landeskog, Sir. Um good luck with the season I guess.”
“This is why we don’t let you out the front Alexander!” Tyson yelled over his shoulder at the man who was hurriedly making his way into the relative safety of the kitchen.
“Ah, so that’s Alexander.” Gabe nodded sagely as Tyson came out from behind the counter, “I was going to say he doesn’t seem too great at customer service.”
“Oh shut up Landesnerd, don’t insult my staff.” Tyson said while looking quickly around to make sure they really were alone before leaning in to press a quick kiss to Gabe cheek.
“What are you doing here anyway? Don’t you have morning skate in-” he checked his watch which read a time far too early to be functioning properly.
“Well I would be on my way for practice soon if someone didn’t forget the lunch that my beautiful wife made especially for him.” Gabe spoke barreling over whatever tangent Tyson was undoubtedly heading towards as he held up an embarrassingly cute bento box style lunch box.
“Damn, tell Mel her WAG game is on point.” Tyson said with a shit eating grin.
“Tell her yourself asshole, she’s your girlfriend too.” Gabe grumbled tossing food at Tysons chest.
“Oh my god, she really is nailing the whole WAG thing, she’s a wife AND a girlfriend.” He said easily catching the projectile.
The look of pure unbridled joy painted across Tysons face was only going to lead to a headache for Gabe. They’d been together for years at this stage, Gabe had no doubts about his feelings for Tyson. That being said, the little fucker could be annoying as hell when he put his mind to it.
“Y’know you didn’t actually have to drop this off for me, I would’ve been alright.” Tyson said his smile turned softer as he took Gabes hand intertwining their fingers together between them. “I own a bakery, I’m not going to starve.”
“Yeah, but maybe I’m just a good boyfriend.” He said with an equally soft smile.
“Best boyfriend.” Tyson said with another quick check around making sure they were still alone before leaning in to connect their lips in a chaste kiss. “Now get going before you’re late, gotta set a good example for the kids.”
Gabe rolled his eyes but he knew Tyson was right. If he didn’t leave soon he’d be cutting his designated captainly arrival time a little too close.
“Whatever, I’ll see you at home.” He said squeezing their hands before dropping them and turning to leave. “Oh can you bring back some of those low carb cinnamon rolls, Byram's been asking after them since the last team dinner.”
“Tell Bo he can come visit me if he wants my sweet treats, I haven’t seen him since before that last road trip.” Tyson yelled to Gabes quickly retreating back.
_/ _/ _/
“So was I supposed to know that our boss is apparently very good friends with the captain of the Colorado fucking Avalanche or was i just supposed to find out by listening to them insult eachother?” Alexander announced as the door to the shop front slammed shut behind him leaving a safety barrier between him and one of the most confusing - and terrifying - interactions since he had begun working at Barrie’s Bakery.
EJ shot a sidelong look toward the room's new occupant before pointedly turning his back to Alexander so as to attend to the fresh batch of chocolate chip cookies being pulled from the oven not bothering to offer a response.
“Hold on, Gabriel Landeskog?” Cale said from where he was sitting next to Sammy on EJs prep bench holding a wooden spoon covered in batter that matched the battered surreptitiously spread at the corner of Sam's mouth. “As is Gabe the babe?”
“No Juice, the other captain of the avalanche.” EJ said without bothering to look up from whatever he was doing.
Kerf threw his arms up in an exaggerated expression of exasperation, “Can we focus on what’s important here? Our boss is apparently good enough friends with a professional athlete to casually insult him. It was mortifying” He says glaring around the room before focussing back on Cale “Hang on a second why weren’t you out the front Cale, it’s literally your job to have painful customer interaction. It’s your fault I’m traumatized now.”
A flush made its way up Cale's neck turning his face - what EJ would no doubt describe as quite a lovely shade of bright - red as he looked guiltily down at the half licked spoon in his hand then between Sammy and EJ who had of course coincidently begun paying attention to the conversation.
“You guys are the worst.” Kerf huffed grumpily “You three are being all gross with your stupid flirting, boss is apparently friends with Gabriel Landeskog and Josty doesn’t even work today.”
He snatched the spoon from the younger man's hands earning a dirty glare from both Sammy and EJ. Tossing the spoon into the sink before taking the tray from EJ’s hands and hip checking him out of the way.
“At least keep an eye on the front Cale, some of us are actually doing our jobs.” Kerf mumbled, turning his back to the rest of the room.
“Yeah Cale, keep an eye on the front.” EJ leared
“Me an EJ will keep an eye on something else mon chum.” Sammy finished lifting his hand for EJ to high five.