The second time Joy meets Alvin, she can’t decide whether or not it’s a terrible nightmare or an elaborate ruse. Considering he thinks it’s the first time they’ve met, when in fact the first time they met he was trying to arrest her for stealing over twenty thousand dollars worth of jewelry while they were both using their alter egos, her reservation is valid. Silverfang and his vigilante friends failed in catching Jaguar that night, but that doesn’t mean Joy Guerrero has necessarily gotten off scott free.
Fortunately and yet, somehow simultaneously, unfortunately, her younger brother really is dating Alvin Chand. Which means that although she isn’t going to be arrested belatedly for her crimes, her personal and professional lives are going to intersect in rather uncomfortable ways.
“Joy,” Simon says, smiling, unaware of the inner turmoil he is causing in his older sister, “This is my boyfriend, Alvin.” Which is obvious, from the way their arms are threaded together like out of a period drama.
Alvin looks at her nervously, the same way any teenaged boy meeting his boyfriend’s family for the first time would look. Not like a vigilante trying to suss out if said family is a wanted burglar.
“It’s nice to meet you, Alvin,” She lies through her teeth, extending a hand for him to shake. And if her grip is particularly tight, then it’s just an older sister’s prerogative. She raised Simon herself, she’s allowed to be protective.
“Likewise,” Alvin responds, wincing slightly. More from a message received than from actual pain–Silverfang has super strength, Jaguar does not.
“Joy!” Simon scolds, knowing her too well, though secretly pleased enough not to do much else, “Let’s sit already,” he continues, leading the two of them to one of four table in the unimaginatively, but aptly, named Baker & Son’s Bakery and Cafe.
Mostly, the Guerrero siblings just call it the Bakery. In part, because the entire name is ridiculously redundant sounding, but also because the two of them have lived in one of the apartments in the upper floors since they were children. The Bakers are practically family.
As soon as they all sit, Aaron, the latest generation of Baker, eagerly makes his way over to them with a pad of paper and a bright purple crayon. He is four years old and his tiny apron has little cartoons of smiling cats. As it should, since Joy was the one to buy it for him as a birthday gift.
“Ms. Joy,” He beams up at her, delight obvious on his adorable face. His greeting for Simon is only slightly less bright, “Mr. Simon,” And his smile drops completely when he eyes at the third member of their party suspiciously, “Who are you?” Aaron pouts, though he’s likely aiming for a scowl.
Aaron’s father, observing from behind the counter, stifles a laugh.
“This is Alvin, my boyfriend,” Simon explains, which prompts said boyfriend to wave slightly with a slightly sheepish smile.
Aaron looks extremely skeptical, but quickly dismisses him to gaze adoringly at Joy instead.
“Are you our waiter today?” Joy asks, extremely amused by this entire exchange.
“Yes!” He chirps, pride evident on his cubbish face, “Daddy says I’m a good em-ploy-ee,” sounding out each syllable carefully.
“I’m sure you’re a big help,” She assures, Simon and even Alvin, grudgingly, making noises of agreements. Aaron’s smile really could not get any wider.
“I think I’ll have one hot chocolate and a… hm, what’s your favorite kind of muffin, Aaron?”
“Then I’ll have one of those,” Joy responds, smile curling as Aaron’s purple crayon draws random scribbles on the notepad. Behind him, his father waves a hand in acknowledgement of the order.
“Ooh, me too. Except instead of a muffin I’d like two chocolate chip cookies, please.” Simon adds, before nudging his boyfriend’s shoulder, “What about you Alvin?”
A/N: This drifted away from me very quickly. Like… this is what happens when I don’t outline shit, it just goes off on a tangent and so long, goodbye, thanks for all the fish.