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we watched the lorax last week and you wouldn't shut up about it

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It's not that Navel doesn't particularly like the higher-ups, but it's more that this one has not stopped talking for what feels like hours, complaining about every little thing that inconveniences him. Naomi, Navel notices, is much more visibly annoyed than him; furrowing her brow and putting her hands in and out of her pockets on a seemingly endless loop. 

All Navel wants is to leave and get back to work, but he wouldn't just abandon Naomi to the fate of this man like that... Navel may be a simp, but at least he's consistent. 

 

Then, when the man starts complaining about Naomi's department, of all things, she does something that stops Navel dead in his tracks - she takes out her phone, flipping it open. 

For a relieving, long-deserved moment, the man stops, and goes to open his mouth, probably to ask whatever she's doing.

 

Naomi feigns checking her phone, and Navel does not move a muscle. 

"Sorry," she apologises, but he can see the wicked glint in her eye, "I just need to take this."

 

Raising the phone to her ear but not making any kind of move to turn away from Navel or the higher-up, Navel realises, in horror, what she's about to do.

"Naomi," he half-whispers, half-begs, "Can't you take this some other time?"

 

It's too late - she's already committed to the act, and she shakes her shoulders and rolls her eyes back just enough to worry the both of them. Then, her expression set, she looks straight at the man, phone still held to her ear.

"I am Naomi Kimishima," she begins, and Navel wants to snicker because god, this is the best thing she's ever done, probably ever, "And I speak for the dead."

 

He shudders, transfixed by her stare. Clenching the phone tighter in her fist, she takes a step towards him. "The dead say shut the fuck up."

Instantly, the man turns on his heel and runs, and it's magnificent, Navel barely holding himself back long enough until he's out of sight to buckle down and start laughing.

 

"That is-" he gasps for breath, "The best thing I've ever seen you do."

She smirks, just as relieved as him to be free from the prison that was his idle small talk, "My pleasure."

 

On their way back to Naomi's office, the two of them can hear the beginnings of new whispers, new rumours to be spread. "Wait until Alyssa hears about this one," he grins, turning to her. "She'll love it."