You hugged for a little while before making bashful goodbyes and promises to see each other the next day, then he left to go home, leaving you floating on cloud 9 as you made your way into your house.
The next day you couldn’t wait to meet up with Mirio and you were back at the lab super early.
“Prince Charming isn’t here yet.” Hansu called over his shoulder when he heard you enter behind him.
“Who says I’m waiting for Mirio?” You retorted defensively.
“The fact that I said Prince Charming and you gave Prince Charming a name is clinically significant. Would you like to discuss the results of the study?” Hansu said cheekily as he turned around and looked at you over the top of his glasses.
Your heart leapt and looked away.
“No. The results are invalid.”
“Are you familiar with the story of Pinocchio?” Hansu leered.
“Ok, I get it, and we held hands last night too so whatever.” You said with exasperation; embarrassed but excited that you and Mirio were making progress.
“Ohhh?” Hansu hummed with surprise, his grey eyebrows shooting up in behind his heavy fringe with surprise at this revelation. “When’s the wedding?”
You poked your tongue out and jumped up onto the exam bed.
“Don’t tell him I told you though.” You said softly.
“I am a fan of the fact that he is allowing you to experience things that people your age would usually experience. Being the head of robotics doesn’t leave much room for ‘life’.” He said, “I would know. Considering I am still single.”
“You’re a catch.” You said encouragingly. “Your time will come.”
“Yes, well, for now I’ll just watch my OTP become a SHIP.” He said.
“I… I’m sorry?” You asked with knitted eyebrows.
“Welcome to the Internet.” Hansu deadpanned, “I created an RFO forum for players to be able to document strange in-game occurrence. And some information was helpful but others wasn’t; such as, ‘your mom on level 7 is gay’ and ‘the monster- Nunya, is out of business’.”
“What?” You asked with confusion.
“Then under the Nunya comment there were a whole heap of ‘lulz’ and ‘huehuehue’.” He added. “How old are these kids? 8?”
“I don’t know.” You replied sympathetically, “did you get any useful information?”
“Yes a little.” He replied with a sigh, “I’m collating all the levels with rogue monsters but it seems there is a lot of attention on your Pterodactyl on level 44.”
“Really?” You asked curiously, “why?”
“Well a few players are in the Pterodactyl’s nest and they can’t leave?” Hansu said, his brows furrowing in confusion. “They log out of the game but when they dive in again they’re still there and there’s a force field around the nest.”
“That’s really strange.” You commented, “have they tried to self terminate to reset to level one again?”
“Yes and that’s the only way to get out of the nest but they lose everything. Mahi? Gone. All items in their inventory? Gone.”
“Wow. That’s rough.” You replied, “did you ask your friend to look into this? Has the code been re-written?”
“He’s looking into it but for now please be careful?” Hansu asked in a warning tone, “I have no idea what is going on and how much damage this could do, should Goha be linked directly with this.”
You nodded solemnly.
“I’ll be careful.” You said gently.
“We’ll be careful.” Mirio’s voice said from the doorway, his bright smile aimed directly at you as he entered the room.
Your head whipped towards him and you smiled bashfully.
“Hi Y/N.” He said gently as he walked over.
“Hi.” You replied shyly.
“Want to go get Pants?” He asked with a grin.
“Sure.” You replied.
“I do not associate with this weirdness.” Hansu commented as he turned back to his desk and prepared to set you and Mirio up for the dive.
“Ready when you are, Hansu.” Mirio bubbled as he walked over hopped up onto the examination bed opposite yours and lay back.
You did the same on your bed and Hansu placed the nervegear onto your head, pursing his lips with worry.
“I’ll be fine.” You said softly to him as you looked up at him.
“You’d better be telling the truth or I won’t turn you into a real girl.” Hansu joked dryly.
You smiled and focused on the visor.
“Link start!” You and Mirio called are the same time, sending you both in game simultaneously.
After the blinding white and colour swirl had settled, you blinked as you became conscious in game; lifting your head to look around Butterfli3’s lounge room.
Migata stirred beside you and opened his eyes too, looking at you fondly as he reached across and took your hand.
“I’ve been dying to hold your hand again.” He said softly with a smile and your form buzzed madly.
“S-Same.” You whispered bashfully.
“If we take out Pants today would I be able to have a hug as a reward?” Migata asked with an innocent grin.
“Yes of course.” You replied with a smile, “it would be my pleasure.”
“Well then! Let’s get going! O/N and Butterfli3 should be in soon.” He said as stood up and held his hand out for you to take it.
You took his hand and stood up beside him, smiling excitedly as he interlaced his fingers with yours and refused to let go.
“Butterfli3?!” Migata called into the quiet house, “are you in yet?”
“He’s coming.” The voice of O/N called out from the bedroom, “I’m here, he’ll be online soon.”
She walked out of the room and smiled at the two of you.
“Ready to shit your Pants?” She asked with a ridiculously large grin.
“Are you ready for a dressing down.” Migata joked back.
“I don’t know how to feel about that one.” O/N deadpanned.
“And I would join in but my pants vocabulary isn’t very expantssive.” You quipped, grinning from ear to ear, excited that you were able to contribute to the joke.
“Well done!” Migata praised with a big grin, holding his free hand up to high five you while he held your other hand in his.
O/N looked down and saw you holding hands and grinned slyly.
“Well, well, well, how the turn tables.” She said cheekily.
“Oh.” Migata said with a little chuckle, “I like hands.”
“Same.” You blurted out.
“Hands are nice.” Butterfli3 added as he walked out of the bedroom, “this hand is my favourite,” he continued, “walking up beside O/N and gently taking her hand in his.
“Watch it or these hands will be down your pants-.”
“OHHH-KAY!” Migata said quickly, “let’s go before these pants jokes get out of hand.”
“Or these hands jokes get out of pants.” O/N replied, cackling to herself on the end.