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Kantera would think of himself as a reasonable person. He’s hard to rile up over anything. If there’s something that concerns him beyond what is normal, it’s his friends’ health, and that’s only natural as a doctor, is it not?

He wouldn’t call himself possessive. Certainly not. Tabasa isn’t a possession, and he can do what he wants. If that happens to be talking at length to a Muscle in one of Seaside’s hotels, then he’s welcome to chat him up for as long as he likes. Kantera will just be over here, attempting to read a newspaper.

It’s not going very well. He can’t focus on anything but the two of them talking.

“So you’re an animal breeder?” the Muscle asks, sounding genuinely interested. “That sounds so hard… How do you learn how to take care of all those different animals?”

“It’s not that hard,” Tabasa says, a little sheepish. “I had to study from other people for a long time before I took care of anything by myself.”

It’s just a normal conversation. Nothing to be concerned about. Tabasa can talk to barely-clothed men about his occupation if he wants.

“I admire that a lot. Being a Muscle probably isn’t as rewarding.”

“Nah, I’m sure I could never work hard enough to be a Muscle. Don’t put yourself down.”

Completely normal conversation. Lots of people admire each others’ jobs.

“You’re sweet. Hey, if you ever want to talk some more, my room number is-”

Kantera crumples his newspaper into a tiny ball.

It makes a loud enough sound to get Tabasa’s attention, as when Kantera glances over, Tabasa is looking at him with a nervous expression. “Uh! That’s... nice of you, but my boyfriend and I were just going back home.”

“We were indeed,” Kantera says. He takes Tabasa’s arm, and struggles to keep from glaring at the Muscle.

The Muscle takes a minute step back, more likely to give them more space than because he’s intimidated. “Ohhh. Well, it was nice to meet you, you two have a safe walk home!”

Tabasa lets Kantera lead him out of the hotel. Once they’re on the road back to their town, he says, “We were just talking.”

Kantera sighs. “I know.”

“There wasn’t anything behind it-”

“I know, Tabasa.”

“Were you jealous?” Tabasa asks. When Kantera doesn’t immediately answer, he says, “What could that guy possibly have for you to be jealous of?”

“He is a tad better-looking than I,” Kantera mumbles.

“Are you serious?” Tabasa asks with a snort. “You’re a million times cuter than he is. Ten million.”

That helps, somewhat, and Kantera relaxes his grip on Tabasa’s arm. “I apologize. ‘Tis not my place to police who you may and may not speak to.”

“It’s okay,” Tabasa replies. “Just… don’t make it a habit, okay?”

“Of course.” There’s no one in sight, and Kantera doesn’t think twice about leaning up and kissing Tabasa’s cheek.

Tabasa blushes, predictably. “Geeze… do that enough and I might have to start being the jealous one.”

So Kantera does it again.