Harry turned to Eggsy.
“Well done, Eggsy.”
The young agent tilted his head, waiting for criticism. Percival knew he wouldn’t receive any. Eggsy had been perfect on this mission. He was ready to go solo.
Harry smiled at Eggsy, knowing the simple fact that he wasn’t saying more would clue the young man in.
Eggsy’s eyes widened. “Well done?” he asked slowly, disbelievingly. ‘That’s it?’ his expression begged to know.
“Well done,” Harry repeated. “You handled your mission perfectly.”
Eggsy’s mouth fell open as if he couldn’t believe it. He smiled suddenly and a breathless laugh escaped him. He was so happy, he was beaming.
“I want you to know, my dear boy, that I’m extremely proud of you. I always knew you would make it here some day.”
Eggsy's happiness ratcheted up to an incandescent glow that had Percival halfway to shielding his face with his arm before he realized what he was doing.
“Thank you, Harry,” Eggsy said fervently.
“Oh, Eggsy,” Harry said. The warmth in his gaze matched his fond smile. “You’re quite welcome. I’d happily do it all over again for you.”
Eggsy’s breath hitched. His cheeks flushed a captivating pink as he stared at Harry with the kind of adoration one read about in storybooks, but hardly expected to see in real life.
“I wonder if they even remember that you’re still in the room,” Merlin murmured into his ear.
It took everything in Percival not to release a horribly inelegant snort. Merlin knew as well as he did that as far as Eggsy and Harry were concerned, they were the only two people in the world right now. He busied himself with calculating how long the lovesick idiots would stare ardently into each other’s eyes. At five minutes, he was a bit incredulous. At nine, he was simply exasperated.
“I think you’re actually going to have to interrupt them,” Merlin said.
Percival pursed his lips and cleared his throat. Both men jerked out of their amorous haze, looking acutely embarrassed. Harry straightened his tie and Eggsy adjusted his glasses. Percival shook his head at spies with such obvious nervous ticks.
“Right, well. Percival, I trust you’ll get that drive to Merlin as soon as possible. Eggsy, get some rest. Your next mission will be solo.”
Percival and Eggsy stood. Percival nodded to Harry and started toward the office door. Eggsy, however, stepped closer to Harry’s desk.
“Harry,” he said shyly, “I was wondering if you maybe wanted to get a bite. You know, to celebrate. I understand if you’re too busy. I know you have a lot of…”
“Dear boy, I will always have time for you. Especially to celebrate your accomplishments. How do you feel about…”
Percival was out of earshot before he could hear the rest of the oblivious agents’ dinner plans.
“Honestly,” he muttered.
“Tell me about it,” Merlin replied.
“How do you deal with that all the time?” he asked. Because there was no doubt that Merlin interacted with them both apart and together far more than Percival ever had to. Quite frankly, if he had to deal with such a nauseating mixture of unresolved sexual tension and unrestrained pining on any sort of regular basis, he would shoot himself or them.
Both? Probably both.
“It certainly is an exercise in patience,” the Scotsman sighed.
“No wonder Roxy calls you St. Merlin,” the agent said, shaking his head.
“She calls me what?”
“St. Merlin,” Percival repeated, though he knew Merlin had heard him the first time. “I assume for putting up with those two.”