Being the prince of a kingdom was hard.
There was a multitude of unpleasant, stressful duties that came along with the robust title—an advisor who’d force-feed him all manners of grotesque and rancid substances, spanning all the way from mushrooms to broccoli. A Shield who would openly tease him at any given opportunity about anything and everything, despite being a big oaf himself. A fat weekly stack of mandatory documents that read like a monograph on philosophy, testing his ability to stay conscious on even his best day.
And not to mention, he also had a best friend that he had accidentally fallen hopelessly in love with.
There may have been a decent chance that that last thing didn’t actually have anything to do with the whole ‘being a prince’ part—Noctis could still very well concede that it was a pretty damn big issue, nonetheless.
“Noooct,” said best friend’s voice suddenly wailed out, swatting the prince out of his own head and back into the chip-wrapper bombsite that was his apartment, his startled gaze immediately snapping back to the freckled blonde sitting comfortably by his side. “Did you hear what I just said?”
Noctis stared at him, a frail utterance escaping his lips as he quickly snapped back to reality. The two of them were busy talking when Prompto had suddenly grinned directly at him, his psyche naturally having been so distracted by the cuteness of that shining smile that he just totally zoned out on the notion. Cheerfully admitting that ‘No, I was too busy being preoccupied by how utterly adorable your face is’ just appeared to be out of the question, and thus the raven merely forced a quick smile. “Uh… yeah. Of course.”
Seemingly content with the answer, Prompto brushed aside his bangs and lay back against the sofa, his pose adorably endearing. “So as I said, wouldn’t that be like, so fun? It’d totally be like a dream come true and everything, y’know.” The blonde gave a sudden laugh, the titter eventually dying down as the boy’s gaze gradually shifted away from the prince, his brow furrowing ever so slightly as his teeth gingerly played with his bottom lip. “And I get that it probably won’t even do me any good asking, but still… would you- like, be up for it?”
“Would I... be up for it…?” the raven repeated bluntly, his facial muscles still managing to keep up the smile, his insides on the other hand doing anything but. Wracking through the jumbled mess that was the current state of his brain, Noctis quickly and distinctly recalled that they were definitely talking about photos and cameras and stuff like that; so a reasonable deduction could conclude that he was being asked to observe some of his friend’s pictures or something, perhaps a secret stash or a more personal slideshow of sorts. Which at the very least meant that compliance was bound to be completely and entirely harmless. “Er… sure. Why not?” he responded benevolently.
Prompto gawked at him.
Noctis silently observed the uselessly hanging jaw, the widened eyes staring back at him, blinking rapidly in surprise. The sight was almost as confusing as it was daunting.
With an abrupt change of posture that seemed to radiate with excitement, his friend’s frame was immediately careening towards him to the point that they were almost touching, all whilst an incredulous beam had itself painted across the blonde’s features. “Hold up, I literally need to rewind every word you just said in my head right now, I… wait, really? You’re not kidding? You’re actually going to do this for me…?”
The telling chance that Noctis had been wrong in his presumption sent something through his body that threatened to make him yelp. Nevertheless, the prince’s lips just continued to pull tightly to the sides, lifelessly stretched out like dough. “Y-Yeah… of course, dude. Anything you want.”
Prompto looked like he was going to pass out. It would have been alarming, were it not for the epic, million-dollar grin plastered onto his face. “Oh. Em. Gee. I wasn’t even actually being serious or anything about this, I honestly expected you to just make some lame-ass joke and say no…! But now we totally have to do it right away, Noct- you are just the bestest best friend I could’ve ever asked for! Stay right here, I need to go and get my camera…!” Prompto paused for only a mere second to let out a most undignified squeak, right before hastily jumping up from the sofa, his resolute eyes narrowing as he landed with a clashing flash of irritation. “Crap, I think I left it in your car. You’re gonna have to gimme a sec, I’ll quickly go grab it!”
The prince wordlessly watched his best friend bounce on the spot, twisting around and dancing oddly all the way to the door, his frighteningly enraptured expression never once leaving him. Right as his slender hand pulled down the handle, he spun around sharply, shooting the raven an enthusiastic gesture.
“I legit never thought the day would come where you’d actually agree to be my model for the day, Noct! To have my own personal photoshoot with an actual prince is such an amazing opportunity, this is going to be great!”
Noctis couldn’t even cry out in dismay before the blonde swiftly vanished, the door slamming shut as any chances of escape dissipated alongside the sudden wave of lingering silence.
And then he was just sitting there, helplessly waiting to endure the cruel fate he had accidentally stumbled upon.
The prince was settled on his now-made bed. Or rather, he was where he had been placed on his now-made bed. Precisely so, might he add, where the light from the ceiling and the sunlight from the window combined together and best highlighted his features from the position of the camera lens, all the whilst eager clicks and flashes resounded at consistent intervals throughout, the camera’s scrutiny ever so bothersome. At that second the prince’s arms were positioned unnaturally alongside his body, his head held in a stance that was supposed to look ‘contemplative’, his entire body at the complete mercy of his absorbed and grinning best friend.
He felt like an absolute moron.
“…Why did I agree to this again?”
Prompto kneeled at the foot of the bed, getting a lower shot of him whilst at the same time tilting the camera for some kind of artistic effect. “Because I’m your best friend and you love me and so you want to do nice things for me. Now quit moving around so much, I had you perfectly, in case you didn’t realize.”
Noctis sighed deeply. “I don’t think that’s a good enough reason for this.”
For the first time, the camera actually managed to stop clicking, Prompto giving a winsome pout as he observed the sulking prince. “Aww, come on, Noct, it’s not that bad! Just- focus on what brings you joy and stuff. Go to your happy place. Now leave me to my vision and let me work my magic.”
Go to my happy place… Noctis thought about it as he was mercilessly repositioned like a doll, this time his body being situated so that he was lying down stomach-first, his upper body propped up on his arms in some kind of cutesy pose. The prince had been making no effort to actually try to look any type of way besides annoyed up to that point, but his best friend’s face oddly enough managed to give an impression that the situation was somehow either life or death.
Despite his less-than-stellar feelings for the current state of affairs, the notion had a surprisingly mellow feeling bubbling inside of the prince, just knowing that the person he liked was so enchanted just by having him pose for pictures. It only proved to get his irritated look to gradually fade away as he thought about it more and more, his mind now instead focusing on the sudden glow of warmth that had begun to blossom within him as he watched his friend’s delightfully jovial features. Noctis had been told to go to his happy place, but it only took a moment of consideration for him to recall that there really was no place where he found more joy, no period where he was more content, than the time that he got to spend with Prompto. Which, evidently, he was busy doing right then, even if it was just as an adjustable dummy-model. But by doing so, he was keeping that gorgeous grin to stay on his friend’s face for that much longer.
The thought put an actual smile of his own onto his face without him even noticing it.
“Ohhh…!” Prompto suddenly exclaimed, his eyes widening excitably. “That’s a fantastic look, dude, keep it right there…! I’m going to make you look even more awesome than you already do, I swear.”
Noctis couldn’t help but snort, his bad mood—surprisingly enough—almost being entirely forgotten about as he threw an additional spark of style into his current expression just for his friend’s benefit, Prompto’s breath hitching in abrupt satisfaction at the outcome. His growing grin was indicative enough that the effort was appreciated, but the blonde gave a wordless thumbs up just to make sure. Noctis couldn’t manage to smother his laugh.
He is so cute.
The prince didn’t say that, of course. After all, Noctis couldn’t work around the fact that he hated having any such thoughts about his best friend; it just blatantly screamed out that he couldn’t fulfil the one role that he thought he was good at.
And it was with that in mind did he merely keep his mouth shut, just letting himself get photographed until Prompto’s heart was content. What made his friend happy, he decided, made him happy, as well.
After having been moved around a half-dozen times, his face was tired from all the smiling, his eyes irritated by all of the gazing. However, the child-like glee that Prompto exulted was more than enough of a reward for him not to make any further complaints.
Finally, after giving a telling breath of air, his friend’s arms lowered from their aiming position. Noctis just blinked up at him, right before curling into a comfortable ball there on the bed as he stretched in on himself. “I genuinely feel like you have enough photos of me to start up a shrine.”
“I cannot dispute that,” Prompto conceded with a nod of his head, “However, I do think that a hug is in order; my way of thanking you for so nicely and non-violently cooperating with my whims. As to why you actually decided to is entirely beyond me, but at least the most likely reason for such is that you were just possessed. So, y’know, nothing too crazy.”
Noctis didn’t even give a vocal response, the prince instead just unfolding there on the bed and opening his arms, more than ready to be encased in the blonde’s embrace.
Prompto grinned boyishly as he crawled onto the bed and scooped the prince up into his arms as well as he could, the position awkward due to their differing positions. Neither of them complained.
The blonde sighed good-naturedly into Noctis' neck as he squeezed the raven against himself. “I’ve always wanted to hug a supernatural force, even if it is just some super-kind entity in the body of my grouchy best friend that actually lets me photograph them. I’ve gone all tingly.”
Noctis fought back the urge to tell him he knew exactly what he meant about that last bit. “Or maybe I just like hugs.”
“I don’t buy it. Unless you’d care to share how many times you’ve wound up in Gladiolus’ beefy arms?”
The raven held back a chortle. “Okay, admittedly, I’ve got no response to that. So, uh- maybe your hugs are just special, then. An entirely different kind of hug that I appreciate more than anyone else’s.”
Prompto didn’t respond immediately, and it had Noctis instantly worrying if he had strayed too far from their ordinary compliments. However, with a light hum, the blonde responsively snuggled against him even more, quickly putting the prince’ mind at ease. “How you flatter me and my hugs.”
“And wow, how this sudden pressure hurts me,” the prince joked amiably, the divine sensation of Prompto being against him not quite enough to drown out his snarky nature. “In case you haven’t noticed, I’m still kinda stiff from all the posing.”
“Woah, dude!” Prompto suddenly exclaimed, his voice comically appalled. “I had no clue that you enjoyed being in front of the camera that much…!”
Noctis groaned in horror. “Oh my gods, that was lame.”
“No, it was funny.”
“You can really tell by how hard we’re laughing.”
Prompto gasped dramatically. “You insult me.”
“I’m hugging you so that you’ll spare me from your wrath.” Noctis squeezed extra hard in accordance to the sentiment.
Prompto just snickered, leaning into him for a while longer before eventually pulling away, cracking his fingers as he stood back up. “Okay, enough of this super-duper mushy stuff. I need to go through these photos, I’m legit so excited to see which ones are going to make up my new collection.”
Noctis faltered at that, sitting up slowly on the bed. “Your- you have collections?”
“Uh, yeah.” Prompto replied dumbly, his features unhandy. “What do you think I do with all of the pictures I take?”
“I… guess I never thought about it,” the raven admitted slowly.
“Well, all of the pictures of my favourite subject matters go into their respective collections. These ones from today are going to compose my new, fabulous ‘Noctis modelling collection’.”
“I guess that makes sense,” Noctis conceded, thinking about the idea more and more. “Do you… have one for both of us together?”
“Naturally,” Prompto responded with a smart nod, “Time with you is a for-sure favourite of mine to document, so of course we have our own. It’s one of the best, too.”
Noctis didn’t know specifically how that made him feel, but he was at least certain that it was accompanied with a certain type of warmth. “Well… I guess that’s… kinda cool. That you have a place just for you and me together.”
“Of course, it is. Almost as cool as my collection of you in compromising situations.”
Noctis immediately found himself glaring at his friend. “If there’s anything even close to what I’m imagining is in there, you’d better not show it to anyone.”
Prompto shot him a sly look to match his slick finger gun. “No promises.”
The raven rolled his eyes whilst sighing dramatically, but still eventually found himself smiling as he looked back at the blonde. “But for real, dude, how many of these collections have something to do with me?”
Prompto paused, thinking about it, right before his cheeks slowly began to colour with a rosy tint. “Um… a few of them.”
“…Try most?” the prince prompted with a raised brow, he himself definitely not reaping any satisfaction from his crush’s adorable awkwardness.
The blonde only reddened further as he began to fiddle with his fingers. “…Do you enjoy grinning at the face of my embarrassment at having no other real friends?”
The prince hadn’t even felt the smile crawl onto his face. He was too preoccupied by the sudden flickering of emotion dancing within him. “Nah, Prom,” he eventually assured with a much more genuine look on his face, his shoulders straightening up as he contemplated his words. “I’m just… I’m happy to be such an important part of your life. It… well, I guess it just means a lot to me.”
Prompto gazed at him for a long while after he said that, his frame momentarily still right before he shuddered, the blonde clumsily looking away without saying a word.
Noctis couldn’t help but frown at the unusual reaction. “What?”
His friend’s laugh came abruptly, the blonde quickly shaking his hand. “Nothing, nothing. It’s just, for a second, you sounded really… um, like, really sweet. And stuff.” Prompto quickly cleared his throat before the prince could question what he meant by that, clapping his hands together. “Anyways. I think we should- uh, like, get back to it.”
Noctis stared stupidly. “We aren’t… done?”
“Done? Nope,” Prompto remarked somewhat casually, “I’ve decided that I’ll have you until Ignis is forced to kick me out. Courtesy of you embarrassing me like that. And also, a chance like this has to be drawn out to accentuate its amazingness, you see?” The blonde nodded slowly, eventually staring at the prince as he not-so-discreetly bit into his bottom lip once again. ”A-And if anything, we should really be moving forwards.”
“Moving forwards…?” Noctis restated warily, definitely not too keen on the idea. “What the heck else can you do? Put me in a dress and wig this time, just to really go all out?”
“Har har,” Prompto remarked dryly, his sarcastic tone quickly morphing into something that appeared to be a lot shyer as he continued. “This time, I was thinking something a bit more… like, different. And that’s because… well, since I’ve already gotten enough normal pictures of you to put into a new collection, I don’t really need more of that. But we’re already here, so I guess that you could help me with… something else. Um… w-well, you see… how about-“
The blonde took a quick breath, right before clapping his hands together once again. “How about you take off your shirt?”
The sound of an asteroid crashing into the planet suddenly resounded, stealing Noctis’ breath away. After a few seconds, however, he simply recognized that the sound was just the thundering crash of every single sensation within him coming to a complete stop and then down-right exploding just for good measure.
“W-What?!” Noctis eventually yelped out as if he was choking, his thunderous blush radiating across his entire face. “There’s no way I’m letting you take pictures of me shirtless, that’s- that’s weird…!”
“No, it’s not!” Prompto argued, his features flushing starkly, as if they were trying to match the prince’s own. “Come on, dude, you agreed to do this in the first place…!”
“Hell, no! I’m not going to be your porn model…!”
“It’s not porn…!” the blonde insisted decisively, “It’s art!”
The prince almost burst a blood vessel right then and there. “…You do realize that you wouldn’t be able to publish the pictures anywhere, right? That you’d literally be forced to hold onto them yourself?”
“Well, duh.” Prompto retorted, as if it were perfectly obvious.
“T-Then why do you even want pictures of me shirtless…?” Noctis continued to bluster, his conflicting emotions buzzing around inside of him like a tornado. “You literally can’t do anything with them…!”
Prompto hesitated, his eyes quickly gazing elsewhere. “W-Well… uh, that’s not- completely true. I… Um… well, you see… the thing is…” the blonde hummed softly to himself, his brow furrowing as he twitched there on the spot. Then he suddenly clicked his fingers, his features brightening up considerably, much to the raven’s ever-increasing bewilderment. “Y-Yeah, so, y’know how I like to draw and stuff, right? Well, anatomy is like, so hard to do. So, these pictures would be for that. I would like for you… to be my base. Of sorts. For me. Yes.”
Noctis’ incredulity couldn’t expand any more so. “Just get a picture off of the damn Internet…!”
Prompto seemed taken aback at the raven’s indignation. “B-But, Noct…! I can’t do that…!” he persisted weakly, his hands gesturing wildly to try and accentuate the sentiment. “They’re like, never posed right and stuff, it’s never the way I want it. You have to know how much of a perfectionist I am when it comes to these things, so I really, really need you to do this for me! It would totally mean so much to me, you’d be my BFF for even longer than forever…! Please, please, please…!”
Noctis couldn’t even stop himself from visibly faltering, the perilous sight of his best friend’s puppy dog eyes staring straight through him like a death beam, his critical-striking begs going straight to his weak, crushing heart. It was completely and utterly unfair. Practically an illicit abuse of power that he had no choice but to comply to. On the edge of being down-right evil.
It was almost an entire minute before the prince found his voice again. “…Fine.”
Prompto blinked gawkily. “Wait, seriously?”
“Wha- What do you mean, seriously?” the prince demanded accusingly, “I thought you needed this…!”
“I-I do…!” Prompto hastily affirmed with conviction, his head abruptly nodding again and again in fervent agreement. “What I meant to say was- of course! W-Whenever you’re ready…!”
Noctis stared at his friend. Prompto stared back. Neither managed to say so much as another word.
After the awkwardness had reached its peak, the prince just let out an enormous, defeated sigh, dumbfounded as to how he even got into this situation in the first place. Figuring that it was better to just once again comply to Prompto’s whims and get it over with, he shocked himself when he gingerly went to take his shirt off for his best friend. Of course, he deemed that it was only natural that he was immensely embarrassed—it just didn’t help that the blonde’s eyes were practically glued to his hands.
The prince slowly slipped out of the article and pulled it off of his head, right before haphazardly tossing it to the side. Even though it was just his top half being exposed, the raven still couldn’t bring himself to meet his friend’s eyes.
Despite how close the two were, his blatant insecurities when it came to the state of his body had made sure that the blonde in particular had never even laid eyes on his bare chest before; and whilst he had in fact told him about his accident and the unsettling scar that was latched across his spine, he had never held any desire for him to ever have to see it. And so, to suddenly be bearing it all for the first time to his crush, just for him to be taking photos of him that were going to be used for nothing more than drawing—it didn’t exactly fill his heart up with glee.
Unawares to any such notions, Prompto just stared with tangible awe from the foot of the bed. “Wah…! This must be what you see when you die and go up to the heavens…!”
Noctis finally managed to shoot a glare at the blonde, unimpressed and meekly ashamed. “Oh, shut up, you nerd. My body isn’t even anything to look at.”
“Wha- that’s not true…!” Prompto insisted with a sense of conviction that the prince was sure was empty.
Brushing off the statement with a grunt, the raven quickly replied. “Don’t be stupid. I’m not all perfectly toned and sharply defined like Ignis, and I’m definitely not totally jacked like Gladiolus. I even have this big ugly scar on my back, just to top it all off.”
“…Well, I’ll just have to be the judge,” Prompto decided with a nod, “Let me see it.”
Noctis took a moment before he merely grunted, an indication for his friend to just go ahead. The blonde circled around him to look at the never-healing mark, staying there a few seconds before eventually making his way back to his prior position.
“Well…” the blonde spoke slowly, “now I’ve finally seen it.”
The prince hummed a single note. “Not very pretty, is it?”
His friend didn't react immediately, but it only took a few moment before Prompto was gazing at him with a surprisingly empathetic look painted onto his face. “…You know, you can say whatever you want about yourself, but I’m being totally serious when I say that whatever you’re thinking is like… super invalid. Totally wrong. Because I think that you’re absolutely perfect, Noct.”
Noctis actually missed a breath at that, his stupid heart actually skipping a beat altogether as the blonde’s words repeated over and over in his head. Did his friend really not understand what he did to him when he said things like that?
Unable to find his voice immediately, the prince just hummed once again to fill the silence in a vain attempt to not look entirely stupid, hastily looking down at the bed-sheets as unwanted emotion started lighting up inside of him once again. “J-Just take your pictures so I can put my shirt back on. It’s… cold.”
Prompto gazed at him for a while longer, right before a dazzling grin quickly took hold of his features. “Sir, yes, sir!”
Noctis had been positioned in various different ways for their next photoshoot, the poses diverse and interestingly enough, not appearing to be of any use for any kind of anatomical assistance. Especially when Prompto wanted pictures of him sitting ‘just like Noctis’ and things like that. However, the prince certainly wasn’t the artist in the room by any means, and so he simply complied to his friend’s wishes.
By the time his chest was once again being caressed by fabric and not plain air, Prompto was already appearing to be in his own world, going through his camera whilst an eager finger pressed down on the arrows to go through all of the photos from beginning to end. Noctis had politely declined from having to look at any of them, but that hadn’t hindered any excitement on his friend’s part.
“Oh my gods, these look absolutely incredible…!” Prompto chanted way too cutely, his eyes never managing to detach from the camera screen whilst he giddily bounced on the spot. “Especially when you started smiling all cool and stuff right at the camera, it’s like I’m looking at you in real life! And now I even have these amazing ones, where the lighting totally accentuates all of your-”
At some point, the prince had more or less began to tune the blonde out, simply content that his crush was happy because of him. It also made him feel like a better friend than he feared he might actually be, so even despite of his initial discomfort, he was kind of glad that he could make Prompto as ecstatic as he appeared to be. He was also probably going to rave about the pictures for a while, so he really ought to-
“-Gods, Noctis just looks so hot!”
The suddenty of that one sentence flying into his head hit Noctis like a bus. Additionally, he almost bit off his tongue. “What?” he suddenly coughed out, having choked on his own spit in the process of nearly having a heart-attack as he immediately tried to get a grip on what the blonde had been saying.
Prompto froze in his place, gradually turning around to face the raven. “Er, I mean… I meant that in the sense, like, how you would look to a girl, who also like- liked you at the same time, and saw these pictures, and thought that about you. And stuff.”
The prince honestly didn’t know what to make of that. “Okay…?”
“A-Anyways!” Prompto quickly exclaimed, abruptly thrusting the camera towards the raven. “Here, take a look!”
Pushing back the barrage of feeling that had attacked him not even a minute prior, Noctis tried not to let it show outwardly. “A-At myself?”
“Just do it!” the blonde insisted still, his aura quickly having turned from bubbly to confusingly self-conscious and timid.
Forcing himself to just get over whatever he thought had just happened, the prince gingerly took the camera and gazed at the picture without saying a word.
The screened shot that Prompto had decided to show him was one where he was just sitting there grinning at his friend behind the camera. Despite his aversion to looking at himself when he was actually doing something as weird as posing for pictures, it was actually pretty flattering, the raven couldn’t lie—however, it wasn’t like he could ever compliment a picture of himself in such a manner, no matter how nicely taken it was. “Meh,” he eventually decided to tease with a shrug, aiming to move past awkwardness from before with some light humour. ”I’ve seen better.”
“…Is that so? How many shirtless dudes’ bodies have you been looking at, eh?” Prompto jibed before quickly wiggling his eyebrows, the distraction obviously having worked.
“I was referring to the picture,” the raven shot back instantly.
Prompto’s jaw dropped risibly. The prince had to bite his lip to stop his grin from pulling at his cheeks. “…Are you looking for a major ass-pummelling?”
“Oh, no way, Prom, not me,” Noctis assured with a look of utmost kindness, “I know how much you’d hate sticking to a diet of hospital food.”
His friend dived on him right after letting out an intense war cry, the prince unable to stifle his giggle as they began to roll over each other across the bed, both of their hands’ diving eagerly for each other’s sides. There were grabs, pulls, blocks, and he was pretty sure one of them flipped the other over their hip at one point or another, but the raven was too preoccupied with how hard he was laughing throughout the tense battle to take notice.
Eventually, his pesky best friend managed to get on top of him and infiltrate his defences, his hands squeezing down mercilessly on his tender sides, the prince crying out in dismay as staticky laughter spilled from his lips alongside his stuttered pleas.
“I yield, I yield!” he cried as he both tried and failed to hinder the onslaught.
“Who takes the best photographs in the world?” Prompto demanded intensely, even though his grin spanned from ear to ear.
Despite Noctis’ back arching and spasming, no relief was to be found from the hysterical torture. “Y-You do!” he cried, “Prompto does!”
The harrowing pressure to his sides was promptly released, the prince instantly shivering whilst his frame buzzed all over with unsettlingly prickly sensation. However, Prompto just smirked sadistically. “And don’t you forget it.”
Unwilling to be defeated so easily, the raven waited for the blonde to lift off some of his weight from his body before grabbing him and spinning them over, Prompto yelping as he fell onto the bed with Noctis being on top this time, more than ready to deliver his almighty punishment.
However, an awkwardly flailing Prompto shot out his arm as he hit the bed which in turn smacked against Noctis' own, the same limb that just so happened to be keeping him up. Swiftly losing his balance and dropping forwards, it took only a second for the prince's chest to be bumping flatly against his friend’s own.
And then, just wonderfully enough, their lips were mere inches from one another’s.
The sudden intimacy was so beyond startling that Noctis instantly had to fight to keep his face from exposing his feelings, the prince holding back an overwhelmed scream at the sudden and mortifying position he had so quickly found himself in. So busy with fighting not to react was he, that he entirely forgot to pull away from his friend in the first place.
And so, the two were just frozen there in stunned silence, gazing at each other in unceasing surprise, their perfectly positioned faces still a mere lean away from meeting.
Noctis honestly expected his friend to make some kind of joke at the startling fail, or to at least try to get out from under him—but for a reason entirely unbeknownst to him, all he saw when he looked at the blonde was a mirrored image of what he felt like inside; a boy that was blushing fervently, his irises shimmering whilst locked onto his own, unable to function being so close to his crush.
Shocked at the fact that that last thought had even popped into his head, the prince ultimately didn’t know what to make of the barely stuttering person beneath him that seemed to be just as abashed as he was.
“Noct…” Prompto murmured out, his strikingly rosy flush beautifully accentuating the freckles on his face.
The raven would’ve thought that the designation would be laced with incredulity or even confusion that he had still yet to move off of his friend, but instead, astonishingly enough, for some reason it sounded a lot more… warm. Ardent, even.
It was a reason that suddenly had the prince’s head reeling at its very possibility.
Immediately Noctis knew that he had to ask him, he had to ask if what he was thinking actually held any merit whatsoever, even though he knew that there was absolutely no way that it could’ve been true, he couldn’t shake the need to at least try…
And then a very certain something nudged against his leg.
The blaringly palpable realization hit the prince like a fist right as Prompto ripped his arms away, his friend crawling out from beneath him right before launching himself across the bed. Shooting out vigorous apologies again and again, the blonde immediately snatched a pillow from the floor and utilized it in a vain attempt to maintain his dignity.
Noctis just remained in his own little state of shock. He genuinely couldn’t believe it.
“Prom…” was all he could mutter out in his daze.
“D-Don’t say it, please don’t say it!” the blonde begged, his face startlingly anxious and ashamed, “I’m so sorry, Noct, I didn’t mean for that to happen…!”
The clogs within the prince’s head were all clicking together, miraculously so. Small pieces from their day together could just be stuck together with the glue that consisted of the sudden revelation, and just looking back at it, the prince was astounded how he hadn’t even seen it before. “Prom, is… is that why you wanted pictures of me without my shirt on…?” he murmured almost to himself, “So that you could…?”
“G-Gods, no, don’t say it like that!” Prompto exclaimed instantly, his cheeks remarkably reddened, his features unnaturally tight. “I wasn’t going to do anything creepy with them…! I just- I wanted to have some amazing pictures of you and your body, because- well, I think you’re really beautiful, Noct…! And I- I also… I…”
Prompto never managed to finish the sentiment.
“Prom…” the prince once again murmured, his insides and his head equally alight with sensation.
The blonde just bit into his lip with abandon, his hands mercilessly squeezing down on the pillow on his lap. “I know, I know I’m so fucking stupid for thinking anything like that, I’m sorry, I just-“
“I get it, I get it, don’t worry, I’ll delete the photos, Noct,” the blonde spun around there on the bed, evidently unable to look his friend in the eyes for any longer. “Gods, I can’t even believe how much of a-“
“What?” Prompto shot out sharply, his voice cracking harshly as his shoulders began to tremble.
Noctis took a bated breath, wholly unable to hold himself back. “I don’t mind it.”
Prompto’s quivering immediately came to an abrupt halt, his next objection flawlessly failing him entirely. “…What?” was all he managed to whisper.
Noctis truly couldn’t believe the words were actually coming out of his mouth, and yet still he somehow forced himself to continue. “I… don’t mind if you think I’m beautiful. Or hot. Or anything like that. Because… I kinda think you’re those things, as well.”
It took a few seconds, but eventually, Prompto had managed to turn back around. His smile didn’t quite reach his eyes—mostly due to the fact that his entire face was unnaturally frozen in a state of apparent shock. “…Come again?”
“Prompto, I…” Noctis was blushing all of a sudden, unable to conceal his embarrassment at so openly expressing himself to the person he thought could never love him in the way that he loved him. “I like you, okay? A lot. Like, a lot more than I should.”
All he got was the same, dumbfounded stare.
“This is like, super embarrassing to admit,” the prince continued, his flushed cheeks downright burning. “But for a while, now, I’ve had… feelings for you. Like, even sexy ones.”
Prompto continued to helplessly gape at him. “…Shut up.”
“I’m being serious.”
“And I’m being serious when I swear to you that I’ve just gone deaf. Either that, or you spiked my soda with drugs.”
The prince grimaced. “Could you just take this seriously for one minute?”
“I… I’m not sure.”
Noctis waited tensely. Prompto breathed in, and then out, followed by a hasty rubbing of his eyes with his arm.
“Did you… actually just say all that to me?” the blonde murmured out after a few seconds.
The prince thought about it for a while, suddenly feeling too scared to be blunt. “It depends… how would you react if I… did?”
“I mean… I-I don’t know.”
Noctis gulped down his apparent anxiety. “Have you… ever thought about it? Me, saying that I… liked you?”
Prompto continued to be indisputably embarrassed. “I… might have.”
“And… what happened?” the raven prompted further, ”In your head?”
“I… I might have pulled you in and hugged you,” the blonde hesitantly confessed, his features aglow with a most fervent shade of pink, “and then we’d- we’d have kissed… right before riding off into the sunset on our chocobos, alongside all of the Justice Monsters Five characters.”
“Okay, so I’m not too sure how capable I am of making that last bit happen,” Noctis admitted slowly, just before he felt a small and shy smile begin to grow on his face. “But… a hug and a kiss, on the other hand…”
“Noct… are you being serious right now?” Prompto spoke softly, his gaze nothing short of incredulous. “Because if this is supposed to be some kind of joke, I hate to say it’s not very funny.”
“I told you, Prom, I’m being serious,” the prince swiftly swore, not even having to try to sound genuine as his feelings came pouring out. “I’ve never been more serious. I… I want to hold you in my arms, like, all the time. And when you’re not around, I get all… longing and stuff. I think about you all the time, I literally can’t help it. And… and all day, I’ve really wanted to kiss you. Even… now.”
Prompto just sat there, a mannequin frozen in time, his features startlingly unmoving. Figuring that he may have accidentally broken the love of his life, Noctis slowly shuffled towards him, gently placing a hand on his friend’s shoulder.
Seemingly broken from his trance at the touch, Prompto’s eyes snapped onto his, the blonde not looking like he could do much in that moment. As such, the prince decided to just take the initiative, consequences be damned.
“Prom…” he managed to whisper to his friend, “Can I… kiss you? Right now?”
Noctis never thought that the Six would spare a miracle on him, but it appeared that he was mistaken when Prompto finally managed to give a small, diffident nod.
And then at long last, the prince leaned forwards and met his crush’s lips with his own.
Everything in the world at that very moment disappeared, every single notion dissipating from his mind because he was kissing Prompto. He was actually kissing Prompto, and Prompto was actually kissing him back. It was a dream, a perfect fantasy that didn’t exist; and yet here they were, enjoying the new-found sensation even more with every passing second, the two even pulling each other closer as they absolutely lost themselves in the beautiful moment.
It look a long, long while, but eventually, the prince gently pulled away, his breathing erratic, his soul nothing short from being dazzled.
Prompto as well, looked entirely shell-shocked. “I-I… I think we just kissed.”
“So glad you noticed.” Noctis breathed out.
The blonde looked dazed, even his ears burning up as he tried to remember how to speak again. “Was it… good? For you?” he eventually asked in a weak voice, “C-Coz for me, it was like, crazy good. But you- did you like it? You aren’t… disgusted? Or anything like that?”
Noctis shook his head with solemn surety. “I loved it. I love you, Prom.”
Prompto stared at him, his eyes almost immediately lighting up at the sentiment. “Could you say that again, please?”
The prince took a deep breath. “…I love you, Prom.”
The blonde looked like he didn’t know what to do with his body. However, after a few moments, a small sniffle resounded. “I swear to the gods, if I suddenly wake up, I’m going to be so pissed.”
Noctis’ couldn’t help but let out a single laugh at the sight, the prince hastily leaning forwards once more and placing his lips back against the perfect match they found in the blonde’s, the raven’s hand gently brushing away a tear that has started rolling down Prompto’s smooth face. Noctis pulled away after a few moments, his beaming smile entirely prevalent. “Well then, as prince, I command that you not think this isn’t real.”
“W-Wow… guess I can’t go against the word of a prince, huh?”
Noctis smiled genially. “Against the law and everything.”
After a few more minutes of proving to Prompto that their intimacy was most definitely real, the prince finally pulled away once more with a heartful sigh. He had slowly but surely worked up the courage to ask a very important question over the time that they had spent kissing, and even though he knew that he was ready, he still found himself annoyingly hesitant.
“Say… Prom?” he slowly called to the blonde, his stomach doing backflips as he sat there impatiently, staring deeply into the other's eyes.
The prince, figuring that it was just better to get it over with, took a sharp breath before just spilling out his question. “Will you be my boyfriend?”
Noctis was only given a second to catch the blonde as he collapsed on the spot.
After recovering from almost passing out, the two boys spent almost an hour there on the bed, talking, laughing, and admitting feelings to one another whilst somehow enjoying each other’s company more than they had ever let themselves before. Noctis could never in a million years get tired of the unparalleled happiness that it brought him, and Prompto had happily admitted the same thing.
When the raven’s phone went off from the bedside table, the prince had to begrudgingly leave his now-boyfriend’s arms to lean over to look at the text.
“Ignis says he’s going to be here in an hour and a half,” he stated in a ruffled voice, “Says he’s got papers for me to do, which means that…”
“That I’ll have to go?” Prompto finished for him.
The blonde hummed to himself, nodding his head slowly as he took in the information. “But… we still have an hour and a half, right?”
The prince quickly gave an affirmation.
“Okay. There’s always tomorrow right? And the day after that, and the one after that?” the blonde noted cheerfully, Noctis quickly nodding in fervent agreement. “Well then. I think we shouldn’t focus on us having to say goodbye later; we should instead focus on spending the remainder of our day finishing up what we started. Right?” Prompto swiftly pulled his camera up from where it was peacefully resting the bed. “Considering how much closer we’ve gotten in the last hour or so, I think it’s totally safe to assume that our next step just has to be nude modelling.”
The world flashed white all of a sudden. Noctis was also sure that he was having a seizure. Nevertheless, his gaze finally managed to snap onto the blonde. “No.”
Prompto, diabolical mastermind that he was, had the audacity to appear wounded. “Aww, don’t be like that…! Please, Noct…? Pretty please? I’ll be nice and even let you keep your underwear on.”
The blonde was forced to contemplate his options, seeing that the infamous puppy eyes wouldn’t give him what he wanted. After a few moments, he slowly tried another, newly discovered method. “I’ll give you another kiss…?”
“I can kiss you any time I want, now,” Noctis stated matter-of-factly as he crossed his arms, “so that’s kind of a futile offer.”
“Woah…!” Prompto gasped in defeat, “Princes are so much harder to satisfy than I thought…!”
Noctis grunted, completely unbudgeable. He was more or less certain that the Oracle herself couldn’t even change his mind.
It was also a sense of certainty that quickly found itself shivering when he saw that his boyfriend was grinning all of a sudden. “Well then… how about I…”
Prompto suddenly pulled in close, stretching up to whisper the kind of obscenity that’d cause the king himself to have a heart-attack were he to hear it into the prince’s once-moderately-innocent ear.
Noctis just sat there, the temperature having risen considerably and mysteriously higher than it was a second ago, right before Prompto pulled away with a shy grin, his eyes gleaming in a new-found look of impish playfulness. It was entirely foreign, and yet already the prince was alarmingly addicted.
“…Yeah, okay, let’s do it.”
Prompto immediately beamed and punched the air. “Score!”
The prince couldn’t even let out a weary sigh as his pants were being gracelessly yanked down his legs, Prompto gasping in sheer and utterly abashed delight.
A hunch told the raven that his life as a prince was from then on going to be dangerous, as well.
However, after gazing at the beautiful face of his grinning boyfriend after he gave him a kiss on the cheek, he could very well concede that he didn’t care.