Funny this is the prompt, ’cause when I first saw it I was definitely not enthusiastic for it, ha-ha. But then I thought back to a couple of dorks I wrote about awhile ago and decided the prompt could fit them nicely. 🙂
The Universe Is My Canvas by OnlyOliveOil
“Why don’t you paint with me today?”
Tad was sitting in his usual spot in the art room, balanced on his stool with brush in hand, carefully stroking the canvas and giving it life. Ever since the first time of catching Tad with his ‘hobby,’ Jason had since brought his homework with him, sitting next to his friend and tutor (crush, really) as they both worked.
Usually the time was spent in companionable silence, the only sound being Jason’s pencil and Tad’s brush, with intermittent erasing and swishing of brush in water. Jason was chatty by nature, but he also knew that Tad was not, and respected that… for the most part. Sometimes he couldn’t stop himself. Tad put up with it, especially when it was questions regarding Jason’s homework–he was the guy’s tutor, after all. But for the most part it was minimal and easy conversation, with Jason usually striking it up.
So Tad’s sudden question caught Jason off guard. The lead in his pencil snapped and flew off… somewhere, in his surprise.
Jason balked at the very idea. While he was the head of the art club, painting was not his medium. He wasn’t bad at it, exactly, but it wasn’t his favorite to do, by any means. He’d much rather watch Tad paint than participate, himself.
“Gee… uh, I’d love to, but this Chemistry isn’t going to finish itself…”
“I know for a fact that it isn’t even due until Friday. You have time. Set up over here next to me,” he said, turning to look at Jason as he pointed his brush to the spot on his right. Tad, still a bit standoffish, had grown much more personable over their after-school meetings.
“I’m more of a pottery kind of guy,” Jason continued lamely, glancing at Tad’s canvas even as he resigned himself to giving in. As he walked away to grab his own supplies, he saw that Tad’s latest piece was as magnificent as always.
There was no sunset to compliment Tad’s work this time–it was later in the year and too dark out for that. All the same, his art was nothing short of lovely. This one looked like it was in a post-apocalyptic future, with distorted railroad tracks and tipped bullet trains, a bent railroad crossing sign, and a lone, small black figure walking down the center of one of the old tracks. Large buildings began and disappeared in the background, surely continuing to tower off the edge of the canvas.
It was all still conceptual, mainly slabs of grays, whites and blues, and minor lines for detail, but Jason could see where it was going. He couldn’t wait to see the final product.
Sighing dramatically, he set himself and his things on Tad’s right and stared blankly at his vast expanse of white. He hadn’t painted for awhile, what could he do? He looked at Tad and his painting again, trying to spark something but coming up blank. He’d much rather sit with a potter’s wheel. The only brush work he saw himself being good at was glazing.
“What’s wrong?” Tad asked, stopping and turning to look Jason in the eye. At Jason’s intense look back, Tad’s ears turned a bit red–oh, Jason still found that irresistibly adorable. Tad frowned a little. “What?”
“I have no inspiration,” Jason groaned, letting his arms flop down lifelessly. His head tipped back and he stared at the ceiling. “I don’t know how you get such amazing ideas, Thaddeus–” the annoyed huff at his side made him smirk a bit. He closed his eyes and sighed again, “but whatever muse has graced you with this creativity, I wish she’d share some with this poor sap on your right. My mind is almost blank.”
There was silence for a moment before Jason heard the scraping of Tad’s stool. Before he could open his eyes, he felt a sudden pressure on his cheek, which made his eyes open wide and then some.
Now his mind was completely blank.
There was more noise: the scuff of sneakers on tile, the stool moving back to its original position, Tad clearing his throat, and his brush swishing almost frantically in the water again.
“T-Ta–” Jason stuttered as his head dipped back down and whipped in Tad’s direction. Tad wasn’t looking at him, though. But boy was he red. Probably as red as Jason felt. Did he really just–?
Tad bit his lip and grabbed his smallest brush, dipping it carefully into a small bit of green on his palette. With a steady hand, in spite of what had just happened, Tad slowly dabbed the brush onto the canvas. Once, twice, both right next to each other in the area of the small black figure’s face.
Jason blinked his own eyes–a darker green than the near mint-green of the figure’s, surely–and felt a small grin split his face.
With new-found enthusiasm, Jason picked up his brush and started on his own painting.
He had so much he wanted to say, as was his talkative nature, but he’d let Tad have his silence… for now.
The piece that inspired Tad’s art this time. ❤ Click the image to find the original.