“Mmhmm.” You mumbled as you nodded your head with a blush dusting your cheeks.
“He’s so CLOSE TO ME! I CAN’T. EVEN. LOOK AT HIM!”
He continued to look through your items, mumbling things to himself.
You glanced at him hesitantly from the corner of your eye and he turned his head slightly as his eyes met yours.
He paused then quickly pulled back.
“O-oh sorry O/N.” He mumbled hurriedly as he walked back around to his side of the table, his face going slightly red.
“Would you like some dessert?” The waitress asked as she arrived at the table, interrupting the awkward moment. Thankfully it wasn’t that friendly player who lent you mahi the first night in RFO, if it were her you were pretty sure she would have made some kind of suggestive comment.
“O/N?” Butterfli3 asked.
“Oh! No I’m fine, thank you though Butterfli3.”
He asked for the bill then dismissed the waitress before turning back to you.
“What time will you be on again tomorrow?” He asked.
“4pm, the usual.” You said with a smile.
“Oh…I might already be gone by then.” Butterfli3 replied sadly. “I don’t know how long I will be away for; but if I can, I’ll come back to see you.”
“I’ll be waiting.” You replied with a grin. “I’m not going anywhere.”
“Ok.” He replied, giving you a soft look.
The waitress returned with the bill and he paid before you both left and headed upstairs.
“Uh…umm O/N, you use this room and I’ll go back down and pay for another room.” He said shyly.
“Oh? Why?” You asked curiously.
“Umm well I like you and I just don’t want you to think that I’d do…anything to you.” He said with a cheek scratch and averted eyes.
“It’s only characters in a game.” You said with a laugh. “It’s not my real body, plus you’re too polite to do anything like that to my avatar.”
“No, I insist on being the gentleman.” He said, stepping towards you and taking your hand gently.
His hand was warm and his hold was tender.
“Until I see you again.” He said softly as he stepped forward, closing the gap between you two.
You braced. “Is he about to kiss me?!”
He leaned in towards your cheek and kissed you lightly, you felt his soft lips touch you and the blush deepened.
“O-o-oh.” You whispered as he pulled back and looked at you.
Suddenly he realized that he had just kissed you on the cheek and panicked.
“I-I-I umm! BYE!” He yelped before rapidly swiping his menu open and logging out in the middle of the inn hallway.
“BUTTERFLI3 WAIT!” You yelled but it was too late, his empty avatar collapsed and you just managed to catch him in your arms. “I knew that would happen!” You grunted as you turned and unlocked the inn door with difficulty, dragging Butterfli3 into your room and pulling him across to the bed.
You lay him down as gently as possible and sighed before touching your cheek.
“He just kissed me on my cheek! Wait, why am I so excited about this? It’s just a character that kissed my character, it’s not real…but the emotions behind it ….are…”
You sat down next to Butterfli3 and then lay down next to him before smiling and logging out.
“I kissed her!” Tamaki Amajiki screamed internally as he woke up in his room.
He sat up quickly with the nervegear headset still on.
“I can’t believe I was bold enough to do that! But I do really like her…”
He took the gear off his head and ruffled his hair, looking across to his mirror to check and see how it looked.
“I know we’re just playing as characters in a game but I really like the person behind her avatar.”
He got up from the bed and stretched.
“Time for dinner I guess…WAIT!”
“I just logged out of RFO in the middle of the hallway.”
He hung his head and walked stiffly to the corner of his room, resting his head gingerly against the wall as his bottom lip quivered.
“I’m such an idiot.”
His mind ran wild with all the possible things that could be happening to his avatar that could have been left crumpled on the floor outside your inn room door.
“I…I have to go back and put Butterfli3 in a room.”
He pulled his head off the wall and walked back over to the bed and lay down, putting the nervegear back on and logging in.
As he opened his eyes in the game he realized he was already IN a room and he looked to his right.
Your empty avatar was sleeping peacefully beside him and he smiled.
“She must have pulled me in here when I collapsed from logging out.”
Satisfied with where he was, he logged out again and went downstairs for dinner.
As he ate quietly he thought about how far he had come in RFO.
When he heard about its release he was curious to find out what a full-dive system entailed so he bought it after seeing some reviews online. The one review that caught his eye was from a gamer who claimed that he was painfully shy and felt like he was a nobody but when he was diving (in the RFO game) he felt like a different person.
Tamaki wanted to experience this, what would it be like to have confidence and no anxieties?
The first time RFO had asked for a character name he almost triggered the nervegear to disconnect because of the rapid spike in heart rate so not all his anxieties had been cured immediately… it would be a work in progress.
He had wanted the name butterfly, just as it’s spelled normally but someone else had already taken it.
Utterly heartbroken he had walked to the corner of the character selection box and placed his head on the virtual wall for a good 10 minutes until the system asked if he was going to continue.
After mentally going over different ways to spell ‘Butterfly’ he settles on i3… considering he was one of the ‘Big 3 in UA’s third year class.’
He entered the name and held his breath, releasing it in a sharp exhale when the name ‘Butterfli3’ was accepted.
From there he farmed rats until he was confident with his one small dagger and then went straight for the bosses in hidden places that he had read in reviews.
Naturally he had to grind a lot and got killed by monsters multiple times but he didn’t give up, finally hitting the jackpot with getting his cloak and then unlocking the chain whip sword from another underground level off level 38.
Fortunately for him, at this point he was already a level 51 player and thus could unlock the sword instantly, otherwise he would have had to keep it in his storage until he was a high enough level to unlock it.
He loved the chain whip sword because it was easy to use since his own quirk required him to be able to control a relatively uncontrollable object- octopus limbs- and he found them similar.