Ignis has only ever known one prince, but he’s still quite sure that Noctis is the most difficult heir the throne has ever had. Surely his father wasn’t nearly so picky—in fact, as far as Ignis knows, most of the Lucian line accepted whatever eligible suitors the council brought to them. Noctis, on the contrary, rejects every last person they parade before him, the princesses, the countesses, the heiresses, even other princes—he not only shows no interest, he’s borderline rude, and Ignis spends far too much time diplomatically smoothing things over in an attempt to avoid war with a snubbed party. Noctis doesn’t seem to understand that. He still falls asleep at council meetings like the fate of the country and thus his marriage don’t matter at all, and he still has the nerve to fall asleep on Ignis’ shoulder on Saturday nights like he’s a regular young man that can afford to just hang out with friends.
Ignis tries everything. He truly does. He convinces the council to be less strict on the dress code of those they bring in, and he doesn’t even protest when one ash-brown haired noblewoman saunters in like a dominatrix in black leather and metal. Noctis takes one look at her and goes back to playing King’s Knight.
When Noctis leaves the council room, others linger behind, a few not-so-subtle politicians reminding the king that this really must be dealt with. King Regis simply looks at Ignis, because Ignis is not only Noctis’ pseudo-handler, but Noctis’ best friend, and surely if anyone’s going to turn this around, it will be Ignis. Ignis looks helplessly across the room at the security posted along the walls, and Gladiolus cricks a little smirk. Ignis frowns back. As they filter out into the hall afterwards, Gladiolus mutters, “Bet I could find him someone.”
Ignis rolls his eyes, huffing, “I invite you to try. At this point I feel I’ve exhausted every eligible option in the kingdom, not to mention several kingdoms over.”
“Care to make it interesting?”
Under normal circumstances, Ignis isn’t a betting man. He’s far too practical to take needless chances, but he’s at his wit’s end, so he concedes, “If you can marry Noctis off, I’ll be so relieved that I’ll be happy to give you anything you ask.” Although, to be fair, Ignis doesn’t have access to anything Gladiolus doesn’t—despite the fact that Ignis sits at the table and Gladiolus stands at the side in royal chambers, Gladiolus is, technically, higher-born.
Gladiolus follows Ignis into the elevator and confidently agrees, “Deal.”
The elevator doors close in time to keep any of the councilors from seeing the scandalized look on Ignis’ face when Gladiolus relays what he wants. Ignis is tempted to answer with a strong backhand, but the elevator’s in motion, so he won’t be able to make a pointed exit afterwards, and besides, he really does need to deal with his prince.
So he stiffly agrees, “Alright.”
In Noctis’ office—something he only ever actually sits in because Ignis makes him, Gladiolus demands to know, “What’re you lookin’ for, anyway? What does the lucky bride have to have?”
Noctis looks up from his phone. Paperwork is spread out before him, but Gladiolus doesn’t imagine he’s actually going to do any of it. He’ll just sit there, pretending he’s about to, until Ignis eventually bails him out, like Ignis always does. Ignis really is a wonder. And Gladiolus is certainly going to enjoy collecting his prize when he inevitably gets Noctis hitched. Sure, he knows Ignis and the entire council have been trying for years, but they don’t know Noctis like Gladiolus does. They talk about things during training that would make Ignis positively faint. Ignis stands pensively to the side as Gladiolus faces off with Noctis.
Noctis shows as little interest in his nuptials as he always does. But he does bother to answer—he shrugs his shoulders and grunts, “I dunno. Great tits?”
Ignis’ aggravated sigh echoes through the office. In Gladiolus’ peripherals, he can see Ignis’ face falling into his hands. But Gladio figures hey, that’s something he can work with. “Cool.” Then he turns on his heel and leaves, because he knows Noctis isn’t going to be any more helpful than that, and he already knows what he has to do.
Money doesn’t mean anything. Propriety doesn’t mean anything. Ignis and the council have been wasting everybody’s time, bringing in girls with good breeding and focusing more on how they look on paper than in person. He knows Ignis has at least tried to give some leeway there, but it’s not enough. Ignis still focuses too much on the resume.
Gladiolus finishes his work at the Citadel and goes straight to the gym, because there’s no partner like a workout partner, and spandex is an amazing invention. He doesn’t care that none are done up in designer clothing—he thinks Noctis will appreciate the sweat-slicked muscle look.
It takes him a week to bring in four total hotties and sleep with three himself. Noctis shows no more interest in them than Ignis’ picks. Ignis looks at him like he’s an idiot, but Ignis had years to try, and Gladiolus isn’t giving up.
Gladiolus goes to the beach on his day off, half just because he needs a break, and half because bikinis are spandex’s socially acceptable cousin. He sits back on a towel like some lazy, glorious lifeguard and watches tourists splash along the shore. Some people compare the beach to the one at Galdin Quay, where Gladiolus will try next—it doesn’t matter if his pick is local, because surely anyone would happily move to the capital for a shot at royalty. He spots a gorgeous brunette by the concession stand that has an ass like Shiva. Then she turns around, and he estimates she’s probably in her late forties, which probably won’t work for Noctis, but is just fine for Gladiolus. She winks when she sees him looking at her, and he grins back, figuring he’s done enough for the day. If Noctis wants to die a virgin, that’s fine—at least his shield will have plenty of fun for him.
Then a trim blond man in his early twenties walks between them, headed down for the water, and tentatively steps a toe in before getting knocked face-first into a wave by a stray beach ball. The boy splutters and flails out of the water like a wounded chocobo, his spiky sunshine hair slicked all over his freckled face. Facing back towards the beach and newly wet, the man’s given Gladiolus the perfect few: his flat chest glistening in the midday light like a steaming entrée, just waiting to be tasted. His rosy nipples are at attention—the water must be cold. He shivers and brushes some sand off his creamy skin, rubbing between his pecs, and Gladiolus squints, leaning forward, processing—yup. The guy has amazing tits. The hot cougar can wait.
Gladiolus stalks down the beach, grinning at the man’s exposed chest like a hungry coeurl. He’s so won.
Noctis is bored as hell, even though he has enough paperwork to keep him busy for a lifetime, and Ignis is doing everything he can to make it ‘interesting.’
All things considered, Ignis is a great asset. He’s a dedicated advisor and a devoted friend. But sometimes he’s also crazy lame, especially during work hours, and this is one of those unfortunate times. Nothing can make weekly council reports interesting, and trying is just making it worse. Noctis keeps biting his tongue, holding back the urge to ask if they can just go home and play Justice Monsters X already, even though he knows Ignis will kill him for the suggestion. Ignis is the one that dragged him out of bed in the first place.
Mm, bed. Just like that, Noctis is zoning out again. He misses his bed. And his phone. And his right hand. Then the door opens without even the courtesy of a knock, and Gladiolus marches in like he owns the place.
Smirking broadly, he chirps, “Found it.”
Noctis wasn’t aware he’d lost anything. “Found what?”
“The pair of tits you were looking for.”
Ignis’ sigh is full of so much suffering. Noctis ignores it. He frowns up at his shield, even though that statement sounds fun. Noctis has had so many people thrown at him over the years that any entertainment value wore off long ago. Now it doesn’t matter if Gladiolus brings in a busty snake-monster with professional video game experience and a lifetime membership at Kenny Crow. Noctis isn’t going to bite. He only made that preference stipulation in the first place to get them off his back.
Gladiolus snaps his fingers, and when nothing happens, he turns around and gestures. “Hey, c’mon. That’s your cue to come in.”
“Just like that?” somebody asks from outside the doors. “Like... who's in there? Is it really—”
“The prince,” Gladiolus confirms, exasperated, like he’s gone over this a hundred times on the way over. But Noctis is quite sure every noble on Eos is aware that he’s single and, supposedly, looking. Then a slender young man about Noctis’ age shuffles awkwardly into the office.
He spots Noctis, his pretty blue eyes go wide, and he bows so low he almost falls over. He doesn’t straighten again until Gladiolus grabs him by the scruff of the neck and wrenches him back up. He’s flushing so bright that the smattering of freckles across his nose looks like a fiery consolation in a sunset sky.
He’s also dressed somewhere between a cosplaying nerd and a metalhead punk, with tight coeurl-pattern skinny jeans and a cybernetic black top, a faux-leather studded vest over it with plaid trim. Fingerless gloves and a wristband top off the look. He’s that effortless, perfect in-between of ridiculously adorable and crazy hot. He smiles sheepishly at Noct and mumbles, “Uh, hi... Your Highness.”
Noct automatically answers, “Hi.” He can’t stop staring.
He hears Ignis ask beside him, “Who is this?”
“Prombo Ar... bum?” Gladiolus shrugs. If possible, the blond turns even redder.
He mumbles, “Prompto Argentum.”
Ignis muses, “I don’t know the Argentum family. What do they run?”
‘Prompto’ opens his mouth, closes it again, and shrugs. Gladiolus waves a hand, “Nah, he’s a nobody.” It’s amazing how Prompto’s blush keeps getting deeper. Noctis can see the frown deepening similarly on Ignis. Gladiolus nudges Prompto’s side and says, “C’mon, show him.”
“Show him?” Prompto looks confused.
Gladiolus says like it’s obvious, “Take your shirt off.”
Prompto looks horrified. Noctis is horrified. He opens his mouth to say that’s not necessary, but before he can, it’s happening—Prompto’s shrugging out of his vest, draping it over one arm, and pulling the tank underneath over his head, mussing up his hair in the process, leaving him bare-chested, standing there with all his trim lines and smooth stomach and taut abs—
Gladiolus proudly boasts, “See?”
Prompto clasps his hands in front of him and looks at Noctis, eyes constantly darting away, as though he’s trying to look absolutely anywhere else but can’t, because he’s bound by the same magic Noctis is. Noctis knows he should tell Prompto to put his shirt back on and get out of the Citadel.
Instead, Noctis holds out his arm.
Prompto hesitates, then steps forward. He drifts around the massive oak desk like drawn by a string, and then he’s close enough for Noctis to grab his wrist, and Prompto shivers as he’s pulled down into Noctis’ lap. It happens so fast, so easy. Prompto spreads his legs and shuffles up on Noctis’ thighs, hips meeting Noctis’ stomach, hands landing on Noctis’ shoulders, the discarded shirt and vest fluttering to the floor. Noctis’ arm wraps around Prompto’s waist, while the other hand climbs Prompto’s chest—he doesn’t mean to, but he smoothes his palm across the entire area, practically moaning when his thumbs brush over Prompto’s pebbled nipples. Bright pink, they respond instantly to Noctis’ touch, hardening with each flick of Noctis’ fingers. He pinches one without thinking, rolling it around and holding back a hungry purr at the view.
One of Prompto’s hands clamps over his mouth, which is a shame, because he’s making a noise straight of Noctis’ wet dreams. Noctis dazedly mutters, “Sorry...”
Prompto shakes his head. Maybe that means there’s no need to be sorry. Noctis tugs him a little closer, forgetting about the audience, just marveling at how right this man feels in his arms, how good he smells and how light he is—he’s thin, yet toned, and up close, there’s more muscle to his biceps than Noctis realized—he must work out, maybe could even work out with Noctis, could roll around with him outside and learn to use the armiger and—
Prompto squirms and whimpers around his hand, “Um... Your Highness...?”
“Noct,” Noctis corrects. For some reason, he needs to hear this man say his name.
Prompto acquiesces wondrously fast, mumbling, “Noct...?”
“I’m, uh... gonna come...”
Noctis blinks and glances down. The tent in Prompto’s pants is impressive. He ruts suddenly into Noctis’ stomach, ridiculously hard already, somehow every bit as aroused as Noctis is. Noctis hoarsely asks, “Is that okay?”
Prompto nods. He slowly lowers his hand and licks his lips. “Uh... the big guy says you like King’s Knight... and chocobos...?”
Noctis looks out from around the hottie in his lap, snapping, “Gladio, Iggy, out!” Ignis gives him a look and starts to protest, but Noctis insists, “I need a moment with my new fiancé.”
Gladiolus has never looked so smug in his life. Noctis doesn’t care. Palpably bewildered but maybe relieved, Ignis follows him out. The door closes, and then Noctis is alone with a complete stranger who has the chest of a god. Noctis agrees, “Chocobos are great,” and then he leans down to find out what those cute nipples taste like.
The sword swings down into his character’s head, splitting it open, and the game over screen swoops in. It’s the fifth time in a row, and normally, Prompto would be upset about that.
But it’s hard to be upset about anything when he’s lying in Noctis’ bed, facing the elaborate ceiling, with his adoring prince lying on top of him, licking all over his breast. He shudders and swallows, meekly suggesting, “I’d probably have a better shot, if—”
“’M not letting you go,” Noctis says with finality, descending on Prompto’s right nipple with a vengeance. As soon as Noctis’ tongue is laving over the tiny bud, Prompto’s moaning too hard to care about the mocking game-over music. Noctis sucks it up into his mouth and suckles away while Prompto vainly tries to compose himself—he has a job to do. A royal job. His prince commanded it. He’s supposed to beat the level Noctis is stuck on.
At first, that sounded great, because Noctis’ character is way stronger than Prompto’s, and there’s something so incredibly delightful about gaming together, even when only one person has the controls. Prompto doesn’t have a whole lot of friends. No close friends. And suddenly, he’s bathed in intimacy, wantonly adored, and it’s with his perfect match—a man he couldn’t possibly improve on. Noctis is fun, cool, clever, wildly attractive—and he’s the only person who Prompto’s ever seen get a gold metal in the Justice Monster X sewer levels. He’s a dream come true.
He’s a monster that torments Prompto’s poor chest with tongue and teeth and ever-roaming hands, teasing Prompto to the brink—he’s been hard for half an hour and is trying so hard not to come in his boxers. Those boxers are the only thing still on him. But Noctis is naked too, and damn, Noctis looks so good naked. Noctis doesn’t even have boxers on. His semi-hard cock is nudging up against Prompto’s leg, just begging for attention.
Noctis pops off Prompto’s nipple just long enough to order, “Try again, babe.”
“Noct,” Prompto whines, “I can’t do it! The level’s too high, and we don’t have the right equipment—”
“Prom,” Noctis starts, cutting him off with that sort of dead-serious stare he only ever gets when talking about something totally unimportant. “If you beat that level, I’ll buy you your own chocobo.”
Prompto’s eyes go wide. He chirps, “Yes, Sir!” and taps ‘retry,’ even as Noctis returns to licking him up like he’s a particularly juicy popsicle. Noctis melts him every time.
Somebody raps on the bedroom door, and a muffled voice calls through, “Your Highness—are you ready to do taste testing for the cake?”
Noctis mouths around Prompto’s rosy bud, ‘Cake?’
“Wedding cake,” Prompto fills in, blushing hot, because he can’t believe that’s happening.
“Oh yeah.” Somehow, Noctis looks totally fine with that.
He calls over his shoulder, “Give me twenty—I’m tasting something better!”
Prompto groans, embarrassed and delighted, while his talented fiancé goes to town.