After shaking his head back into consciousness, Domino turned his face toward the person onto whom he’d been pushed by his most disliked traveling companion. He laid his eyes upon a pastel-yellow bishop-sleeve shirt with ornamental gold patterns around the edges and a muscular dark-skinned chest that peered from underneath. His face transformed into a look of otherworldly dread as the man’s lips smiled back at him.
“Gah!” Domino shrieked, falling back onto the floor. “You!” he barked, pointing at the man with his finger and glare.
“I-it’s all right, friend! It’s only me!” said the man, standing up from his chair to help Domino.
His jaw was square and masculine, yet his smile was kind. His skin was a warm copper-brown color. He had a buzz cut, an athletic build, and a large sword sheathed away on his back that hung off him by several leather straps. The whole world recognized him and his raging success in the endless battle against evil fiends across the globe. He was a hero by profession. Admired by many, despised by the rest, but most of all, he was feared. He was Zephyr Hugo.
Domino slapped Zephyr’s hand away and stood up by himself. “What? You came here to rub your giant magical sword in my face?”
“Of course not.” Zephyr chuckled, averting his bashful gaze. “I—I mean…I could show it to you if—”
“Why did you come to bother me while I’m at work?” argued Domino. “No—why did you come to bother me--period?”
“Well, uh…” mumbled Zephyr. “I know how much you hate charity, so I realized the best way to help you would be to pay you in exchange for your noble services.”
Domino’s face turned blood red. His eyes opened wide from the sheer amount of shock and embarrassment coursing through his body.
Zephyr presented him with a heavy coin pouch, smiling and blushing like a prepubescent boy confessing his feelings to his crush.
“Ooooooo!” the nearby spectators cheered.
Domino glanced at the drunkards with a fierce glare, wishing he had the balls to throw a beer stein at each and every one of them.
Zephyr continued to gaze at Domino with his hand stretched out, holding the coin pouch in front of him.
“Stop staring at me like that, you freak!” Domino shouted at him, his voice revealing a hint of anxiety among all the anger and discomfort. “I’m not gonna fucking sleep with you!”
“O-oh, no!” Zephyr replied, pulling back the pouch and placing his hand on his chest, unable to look Domino in the eye anymore, let alone keep his smile subdued. “You misunderstood me. I—I merely wanted to compensate you for your performance. Isn’t that how it works?”
A moment of silence filled the air around them, though it wasn’t much, considering how the rest of the club was still raving with noise from the music and the crowd’s cheers.
Domino took a bit of time to think about the proposal before answering. “Okay,” he grumbled, grabbing the pouch from Zephyr while keeping his glare pointed at him. “I’ll take the coins. But only ’cause I’m poor now.” He then tied the pouch around the side of his tight thong that slowly slipped down due to the excess weight. “Fucking shit…” he groaned as he tried to pull the thong closer to his hip bone, hoping it would stay on until he could store the pouch in a less inconvenient location.
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