Title: Pool
Series: N/A
Characters/Pairings: Ajani, Keran, (Ajani/Keran)
Summary: Boys in a bar.
Notes: - January 2004.

Ajani crossed the room, looking around nervously. He wasn't exactly sure exactly what his date looked like. That was error on his behalf though.

It was the same old bar, with a handful of men playing their daily pool game in one corner and the bartender reading the latest in a string of trashy romance novels. The regulars were all at the bar, talking loudly and occasionally letting their eyes flicker up to the television sitting on top of the food refrigerator.

Of course, Ajani realized, he was a bit early and since he'd been the one to suggest the place, perhaps the man he was meeting didn't actually know his way. But then again, his date had quickly agreed to the location.

"Ajani!" one of the regulars yelled. A moment later Ajani was high-fiving everyone at the bar, despite only having not stopped by in a couple of days.

"Where you been?" one of the older guys asked.

Not quite willing to say he'd been online working out details to meet a potential romantic interest, Ajani just shrugged.


"That's no answer," another voice replied. It was Keran, a delivery driver for... Ajani couldn't remember at the moment. It was something local though. Something about Keran, mainly, always managed to throw Ajani just a bit. Mainly because Keran didn't look like the sort of person to be in a bar like this. This place was dark and seedy and Keran was young, strong, and full of life. He didn't belong somewhere so decadent and decaying.

Keran had always caught Ajani's eye, too, but that wasn't an issue at the moment. Ajani was there for a different reason than the usual socialization.

"Whatever," Ajani shot back, nodding when the barkeep asked if he'd like his usual.

"Let me get that," Keran said suddenly, offering a couple of bills out of his pile. It wasn't unusual for anyone to buy drinks for a friend. "And man, I need to talk to you."

Ajani raised an eyebrow, especially when Keran grabbed their drinks and motioned to one of the tables halfway to the door.

"What is it?" Ajani asked as he sat down. Really, he was no confidant. And he couldn't imagine something being so bad that Keran couldn't bemoan it to the entire bar.

"Well, I was wondering if you could do me a favor," Keran said bluntly.

"A favor?" Ajani paused with his beer halfway raised.

"Laugh all you want, but I... I'm supposed to be meeting someone here and if they're at all scary, I want you to bail me out."

Ajani couldn't help the weird face he made. He set his drink down.

"Blind date?"

"From the internet," Keran answered. "I mean, he sounds perfect, but..."

"He?" Ajani really wanted to laugh, because he'd figured it out.

"I thought everyone knew that," Keran tossed off as though it were nothing.

"So you're waiting for your mystery date to show up in about ten minutes so you two can snag the second pool table, see if you like each other, and then see if your date is really as hot as the e-mails he sends," Ajani said, accidentally not noticing that Keran had just brought his glass to his lips.

Once he was through coughing, Keran brought his eyes up to meet Ajani's.


Ajani nodded. "I'm assuming so, yes."


"I already know how you play pool."




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