The man sighed tiredly, running his calloused hands across his face as his chair creaked dangerously at the applied weight. Rubbing his eyes, he sat up before the chair had the chance to break and stared blankly at his computer screen, his eyes straining at the brightness in contrast to his dark room. It had become very late, nearing one in the morning, and each time his lesson went live around this hour, he constantly questioned whyhe had thought this was a good idea. His college studies could have been taken during the daytime, like a normal student. But no, of course, he joined the classes when he had still been a nonsensical night owl, staying up late in the night with no problems and sleeping during the day. That was before he actually got a day job and ended up coming home completely exhausted.
Now though, as he leans his head on his crossed arms, he let his eyes wander over to the chat, where his online classmates could discuss the lesson, or in this case discuss "which pizza flavour gives you a hard on". Ryou wonders how some of these people even got into college.
He's noticed, though, that there are roughly 30 people taking this class and only about 16 or 17 show up during the late night streams. There was always one user, one, who was a frequent viewer. The person had showed up for every single stream, no matter how late or how long. They never talked, never asked questions. The gray person icon was always lit, meant that they were watching, were there, but they never interacted. Ryou felt an odd connection with this person, having been the only other student to consistently show up for the ridiculously timed sessions.
Ryou was momentarily startled by the professor's voice filling his earbuds, and with a sigh he pulled out a ragged and over-used notebook, prepared to write until his hand cramped.
It was nearing half past two in the morning and his eyelids were heavy and his hand cramped. His papers looked worn and tired and he found himself relating to a piece of notebook paper, at which point he mentally scolded himself to go to bed as soonas possible. His hand was on the lid of his laptop before he noticed that there was still somebody online. Even after all other students have cleared out and the professor had ended the stream with a link to a download of it, there was still somebody in the chat, and Ryou wondered why.
The man got a sudden itch, a desire, an urge, to blatantly ask this person what they were still doing. Were they jus slow at copying notes? Were they downloading the video for later? Why are you still here?
Opening his lid back up, his fingers hovered over the keyboard, hesitant and intently watching the name to see if it would disappear at any given moment. After around two minutes of staring, he thought fuck it and typed out a simple message, his stomach filled with unjustified butterflies and his throat closing with excitement, which the man thought was way too much feeling just for a message, especially this time of night.
The brunette rubbed his eyes from tiredness. He only decided to take night classes cause he knew his brother wouldn't bug him at these hours of the night since most of the time he was gone or sleeping from his rough days of working. He put his hands on his face, listening to the professor speak for a solid hour made him feel like a robot having to listen to his masters orders. He rubbed the back of his neck once the professor had ended the session.
He wrote down the last of his notes from the class before looking back up at the computer and opening his browser, and checking the social media he used to see if there was any updates since his day was filled with work he never got to check it before he had classes.
He opened Skype to say goodnight to a friend of his who was probably already way beyond sleep before he heard a little beeping sound. He had forgotten to close the classroom session and saw that someone had messaged him. He moved his mouse other the little blinking icon before clicking it open and seeing the word this displayed on his screen.
RYOU Z [2:34 AM]: Hey.
He was always the silent type when listening to lessons and never talked in the chat provided for questions but most of the kids only talked about their "smoking hot girlfriends" or other stupid things that normal teenagers would talk about. He always saw eery name in the chat, but this one he had never seen appear in the chat. It was weird to him at the time. But after about 5 minutes of looking and thinking about this message, he typed back wondering if the person was even still there.
Ryou had fallen asleep. He had started at the screen for around three minutes before he felt his eyelids forcing themselves closed, and Ryou tried to resist but the lower his eyelids got, the more acceptable the thought of sleep was. His earbuds were still in as he passed out, the volume high from the shitty sound quality the professor had on his stream (that was continuously pointed out and complained about but was never addressed any further). Nearly ten minutes after passing out, a loud ping jolted Ryou from his light sleep, forehead slamming into the keyboard as he inhaled deeply and let out a groggy "fuck" before pressing the heels of his hands into his eyes; his broad shoulders weighing down so low it almost hurt. He let out an exhausted moan, keeping one hand pressed into his eye as he squinted at the bright screen, suddenly remember why he still had it open in the first place.
RYOU Z [2:46 AM]: yhu67777hu
The dark haired man let out a grunt, his hand lazily skating over the keyboard and hitting more keys than necessary.
RYOU Z [2:46 AM]: siorry thdt was my hreasd
Ryou sighed to himself, leaning back in his hair and slapping his hands to his cheeks, shaking his head and causing messy black curls to bounce everywhere.
RYOU Z [2:47 AM] im **** at typing
He meant to say he was shit at typing, but the moderators were asshole and Ryou couldn't find it in himself to keep fixing his mistakes. The other person most likely knew he was tired as fuck, just like everybody else taking this session was. That or maybe they thought he was drunk, but then again, who attends online college seminars when wasted? Ryou almost felt bad for the other person but realised it was his own fault for talking to them in the first place and theirfault for taking so long to reply. Fuck them, he politely though with a great amount of irritability.
Daniel stretched and stood from his chair. It had been a good ten minutes since he sent his message and he assumed that whoever the other person was was probably fast asleep. He turned his head back to his screen when he heard three beeping noises coming from the chat. He walked back over to his chair and sat down, opening the chat once again and letting out a small laugh at how the other was so tired that they smacked their head into their keyboard. They also didn't seem to care that they were messing up a lot of their words.
The brunette leaned back with his laptop on his lap.
DANIEL D [2:49 AM] : Are you tired? If you are you should probably get some sleep so you don't type with your head again.
After sending the message he walked over to his bed with his laptop and laid down. He figured the other would probably say he was going to bed but might as well be there since whoever this was wanted to start a conversation at almost three in the morning.
Ryou sighed and winced at his own words. He should have known from the start that his language wasn't tolerable enough to be shared on a moderated chat, especially when he was close to passing out and giving a negative number of shits about who saw the messages. A yawn interrupted his thoughts before he lay his gaze back on the screen, tears pooling at the corner of his eyes.
RYOU Z [2:51 AM]: oc force im tired
RYOU Z [2:51 AM] *of coruste
RYOU Z [2:52 AM]: **** it
RYOU Z [2:53 AM]: you got am ema il or something
RYOU Z [2:53 AM]: ?
The man stretched, his leg shaking as he bounced his foot in wait for some type of contact information. He thought that maybe if he got that, he'd be able to save it in his notes and go to bed with the reassuring thought he could just message this person whenever he woke up.
Daniel found it kind of amusing that this person was so tired that they could barely type and that they swore so much that the chat couldn't take it and would blank everything out.
Daniel D [2:55 AM] : I have Skype if you want that.
He leaned against his pillows, starting to get almost too comfortable. His eyes began to feel like lead and closed, he shook his head, trying to get the tiredness to leave for just a few more minutes. He shifted, the light from his laptop starting to make his head hurt in the darkness of his room.
Ryou inhaled deeply through his nose, his eyes starting to hurt with an oncoming headache, the light from his laptop making him impatient and pissed off from how obnoxious it made him feel. Early signs of drawn were already showing through his curtains and he knew that in about an hour the birds outside would start singing. He was lucky enough to have inherited his mother's coma-like sleeping abilities, letting him sleep through nearly anything.
Daniel picked up his laptop and set in his lap since he had shifted to laying on his back since he was beginning to fall asleep. He typed out his reply before letting out a yawn and feeling the tiredness begin to take over.
Daniel D [2:58 AM] : it's luka_dressel.123
Daniel D [3:00 AM] : i think i better get to sleep now, night
After typing out both of his replies, he flipped back on his side, waiting a few minutes before closing the tab that had the classroom chat open in it, shutting his laptop.
Ryou watched as the other person went offline shortly after giving him their skype name. The man copied and pasted it into Skype, seeing the contact come up and sending them a request before quickly shutting the lid to his laptop and leaning back in his chair, knowing he should get in his bed before he fell asleep in his chair for the fourth time that month. He stood up and stretched, so much that is actually hurt as he exhaled greatly, his limbs feeling dead and eyes closed from their heaviness, navigating his way through the dark apartment with ease, hands caressing the walls as he made his way to the room across the hall. Once he entered his room, he softly closed the door behind him and sauntered over to his large, plush bed, flopping down on it with an oof. Ryou wiggled his way up towards his pillows, nestling his face into the cotton and quickly falling asleep.
When he woke up, he couldn't tell what time it was. The blackout curtains that decorated his room prevented nearly any heat or light from seeping in. Rolling over groggily, he reached for his phone, slapping his hand over the device and dragging it closer to him, clicking it on and squinting at the bright screen.
Ryou ran a hand down his face, groaning as he sat up. That's when he realised it was a Sunday, and he had no work today. The man almost cried with relief.
Already in a much better mood, Ryou fully sat up in bed, his bare feet chilled against the cold wooden floors. He stood up and stretched, reaching a hand back to work out some knots in his back before leaving his room. He went to the bathroom to take a piss, washing his hands afterwards and making his way to the kitchen, fancying some brunch. Bacon, eggs, and a loaf of bread were sitting on his counter a few seconds later, two pans heating up on the stove. The eggs were being whisked when the laptop made a popping noise, it sitting on the other side of the counter when he brought it out after going to the bathroom. Still whisking some eggs, he grabbed the bowl and hovered over his laptop, reading the message from his new contact he added last night; or rather this morning.
Daniel opened his eyes to the bright light coming in from is blue curtains. He sat up, stretching and making groaning noise as he did so. Lifting his laptop off from the bedside table he opened it, opening up a browser and his Skype. He had completely forgotten about most of the stuff that had happened last night since it had happened so late. It was around 12:34 and he mentally scolded himself for staying up later than was needed and not setting an alarm to wake up earlier.
He watched as Skype opened and noticed how the other had sent him a request. He opened the tab for Skype, the brightness of the white background making his eyes hurt since he had just woken up. He moved his mouse over the button that said "accept" and lightly tapped. The contact said offline of course but that didn't mean he couldn't send him a message.
He got ready to say something, not sure what to say exactly since he had only known this person by name and nothing other than that (thanks to the school chat). He let his hands slide across the keyboard for a few minutes before starting to press his fingers on keys to type out what he wanted to say.
It took him a million tries to actually get what he wanted, so many presses of backspace....
[12:40:38 PM] daniel: hi there!
He mentally smacked his forehead, this was the final thing he came up with to say and it sounded so stupid.
Ryou bristled at the message sitting on screen, cursor blinking away. Their profile picture, Daniel's, seemed to be a picture of an orange haired anime character with a decoration of flowers on it. He idly thought that this person got up rather early, earlier than him at least, after staying up until three in the morning.
[1:35:50] skeletiddies: ey
By now, breakfast was nearly done. The bacon was still sizzling away in the oven, but the toast was crisp and buttered and the cheese on the eggs had already melted into a delicious gooey mess. Ryou grabbed one of the two pieces of toast and leaned over the counter, ass in the air and belly pressing against the side of the counter as he took a bite from the bread, his fingers scrolling over to his internet browser as he logged onto Tumblr.
Daniel had been off in the kitchen making breakfast before he heard Skype go off. He finished making breakfast for him and his brother before taking off the apron he had been wearing and putting it on the hook.
He made his way bvack to his room and looked at the orange blinking icon in the corner of his screen. He dragged his fingers over the track pad, causing the little white cursor to go oer to the icon and pressing lightly on the smooth surface. It was from the person he had met last night. He usually talked to other people but he figured that they were either busy or asleep like most of his friends since their status was still offline. He pulled up his chair, sitting on the edge of it and typing a reply to his... new found friend? Is that what he could call them this early in meeting.
[1:41:22 PM]daniel: is this the person from last night in the school chat?
This was a stupid question. Who else could it me? It could have been a virus but he never got any of those and he didn't plan to get any. He wanted to be absolutely sure that it was them and not anyone else. It had a bit of trust issues due to events in his past.
The laptop popped, and Ryou directed his gaze to the glowing blue icon. He was halfway through breakfast - nearly done, actually - and paused his obscure French mystery movie. Wiping his hands on the towel sitting on his desk, he scratched his hand against his jaw in thought, subconsciously thinking about how he needed to shave his five o'clock shadow.
[1:42:15] skeletiddies: yea it's me
Ryou felt like he should say more, but he wasn't exactly sure on what to say. And besides, this person seemed to need to reassurance that he indeed was the same guy who fucked up multiple times in the moderated college chat. The college chat made for mature, college students. Right.
Daniel let out a sigh of relief knowing that this was that same person from last night. Now here came the hard part, figuring out what to say next. This was always hard for him, even in a real life situation. He would normally say "hi" or something along those lines then he would always have trouble coming up with something after they answered. Why was it so hard? It was just like talking to anyone else. He sat there for a few minutes before he actually thought of something to say. It was probably gonna be really stupid, and he would probably mentally smack himself in the forehead. He had to get it typed out so he could eat his freshly made food before it got cold too. He straightened himself up before beginning to press his fingers into the little black keys of his keyboard.
[1:45:24] daniel: okay good, so what made you decide to message me last night after class?
Daniel sighed, figuring this was the best thing he could say. I mean, he wanted to know after all, and what better way to find out then it coming straight from the source.
[1:46:23]skeletiddies: so aggressive straight from the start
Ryou wondered for a minute what exactly he should say to this person. He avoided being too serious in his chats and he was, true to his heart, never one to dwell on how to speak to people. The realization, though, hit him quite hard as he came to the conclusion he knew nothing about this person. The man never actually met anybody online and became friends with them, other than chatting back and forth on forums or teaming up with international people on his periodical gaming nights. Ryou thought, and knew, that there was an obvious difference between messaging friends in real life online and meeting a complete and utter stranger and having to work out the details. In real life, people would be able to size up Ryou, make stereotypical assumptions based off his rough and messy hair (that was clean but he chose to never invest in a comb), his ragged looking clothes (which were clean and non-torn, just wrinkly), the tattoos that littered obscure parts of his body (he had an artistic side), and the cigarettes that constantly hung from his lips (he doesn't have to explain himself, actually).
Online was different. Hell, he didn't even know this person's exact age. Didn't know their height, their voice, their walk, their fashion, their anything. All in all, when it came down to it, none of that shit actually mattered to Ryou. He wouldn't lie and say he wasn't a tad curious, though. There was always that little nudge in the back of his head that said 'this person could be the exact opposite of you and you've already taken a chance at them!'
If Ryou was anything other than liberal, it was honest.
[1:47:19]skeletiddies: i was interested in you
Fuck. Is that romantic? Ryou shifted in his chair and closed his eyes, closing the Skype window and resuming his movie.
Daniel sat down at the kitchen table, hearing Skype go off but figuring it could wait since he didn't want his food to get cold. Once he was sitting he was joined by his brother, who, as usual, looked tired from work. He was talking into the ear piece in his ear, probably about work.
Daniel zoned out, eating his food. When he finally finished, he stood, rinsed his dishes off before heading back to his room and opening Skype.
Once Daniel opened up Skype his eyes widened. Was this person, this complete stranger, flirting with him? This caused a faint flush to show up on his cheeks.
[2:05:37 PM] daniel: sorry i was eating and are you flirting with me?????
Daniel wouldn't have minded if that was the case, it was just weird from it being from someone he had only just met during 2 o'clock in the morning who he had talked to only for a few minutes in a few short sentences of dialogue back and forth.