An Aversion to Germs and SkinMature

Thane smiled as he walked down to the street with Sebastian, without even thinking he took out one of his cigarette’s, pressed it between his lips and was about to light it when he looked at Sebastian. The look on his face was a mixture of disgust and worry,probably asthmatic or something,Thane thought and with a sigh of regret he removed the cigarette and placed it back in the packet. He could see Sebastian relax instantly.

Now that they were both walking Thane could clearly see that he was nearly a head taller than Sebastian, although, he was always taller than most people in the street. He smiled to himself as he realised that he never took an interest in how tall anyone was, let alone be this interested in anyone at all, but for some reason it was different with Sebastian, there was just something about him.

As the pair of them rounded the corner the little sign of the rabbit holding a beer with a slug crawling up the glass came into view and Thane gave a little smile as they walked closer to the Slug and Hare. This was his favourite pub in the world, even though he had been across the seas and drank at different pubs in different countries it was London; the home of pubs, always had the best ones. It was a simple fact.  

The pub was warm; men laughed at conversations and the bartender, a bearded man with a large beer gut, slid beer glasses down the bar to customers.

“Good afternoon gentlemen, what can I do you for?” The bartender asked his smile reached his eyes and crinkled the corners; it was a sign that the man lived most of his life laughing.

“We’ll have two pints of lager, please.” Thane ordered, sliding thirty pounds across the bar to the man, who quickly put it through the till and filled two pints of lager to the brim. Thane took them, muttering a quiet thank you and walked with Sebastian towards a small table in the corner next to a window.

Sitting down with an audible sigh Thane took a long sip of the lager, warming his body in the process. However, slowly he realised that Sebastian was cleaning the seat with a wet wipe that he obviously brought with him, he scrubbed at the wooden chair vigorously creating beads of sweat across his forehead and a clear look of worry and disgust was painted on his face. Thane kept silent as he watched Sebastian clean the chair, it was strange, a sort of ritual Sebastian took before he could even relax and yet Thane found it fascinating to watch.

However, after a solid hour Thane started to get tired, already drinking half the pint and just getting impatient by how long it took for Sebastian to be ready to sit down. But nonetheless he kept silent, waiting until finally Sebastian shoved the dirty wet wipe inside a small plastic that he removed from inside the pocket of his jeans and sat down on the chair a small smile of satisfaction on his lips.

“You took a whole hour cleaning a chair.” Thane stated in almost disbelief, he smiled though as he saw Sebastian’s cheeks grow bright red.

“Uhh…. I-I guess I’m like you really.” Sebastian started as he opened up another wet wipe from his pocket and started to clean the glass.

“Like me?” Thane couldn’t help but laugh at that, but immediately stopped as Sebastian looked up at him, his brows knitting from confusion.

“You know, OCD, I mean I can tell that you hate germs as well.” Sebastian explained as he resumed back to cleaning his glass with the wet wipe.

Thane had met people with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, but he only met them when they had taken too many sleeping pills or were falling thirty stories towards the ground. Even when they were committing suicide people with OCD wanted to have everything perfect. There was one particular person that he remembered clearly, her name was Ingrid, before she died she had made herself look perfect, not a single hair was out of place, she had worn angel wings, picked a building with forty floors, hit a car and when Thane went to take her soul her whole body was ravaged by the road and was no longer perfect.

All that time she spent on herself was ruined in matter of seconds.

Thane looked up at Sebastian; he could tell that one day that the man sitting across from him was going to end up writing a goodbye note to the world.

“I don’t have OCD.” Thane said bluntly.

“But you haven’t taken your gloves off since we got here.” Sebastian commented although Thane could hear the disbelief in his voice, if Thane was anyone but himself his behaviour would be borderline OCD.

Without taking his eyes off Sebastian, Thane removed his gloves and took a long sip from his lager. Smacking his lips together before leaning back against the chair, “I have an aversion to touching people; it’s not an OCD thing or a mental illness, it’s a personal issue.”  Thane explained and he could see Sebastian’s face fall into disappointment.

“I-I’m sorry… I shouldn’t have made that assumption.” Sebastian’s ears were flushing red with embarrassment and Thane felt a pang of guilt for being so blunt about it.

They were silent for a few moments, each of them taking longer and longer sips just to have something to do between the uncomfortably long winded periods of silence.

“So… what do you do for a living?” Sebastian asked before taking a huge sip from his lager, which was already more than half gone.

Thane stared at Sebastian in a panic; he had never been in this situation before, no one had ever asked what he did and he never thought what the human equivalent of bringing death to people was apart from being a hit-man or a serial killer.

“I…uh… I…” Thane looked around the bar in panic, searching for inspiration, until he caught sight of an old painting hanging behind the bar. 

“I’m a painter.” He said in a rush, but instantly regretted it as soon as it left his lips, Thane couldn’t even paint a sun.


Victoria moved through the crowded streets, angry at the bouncer who shook his head at her and barred the entry, as she tried to follow the man who always wore gloves. She crossed the street and looked back at the Slug and Hare, through the window she saw him talking to the man who sat opposite of him and drinking his pint.

God, he was so perfect, he had this thing about him that just made her want to look at him all day.

A soft smile appeared on his lips and Victoria quickly got her camera and snapped the scene in front of her.

She almost screamed in surprise as she watched him take off his gloves; his hands were large and almost as pale as snow. Her heart hammered against her chest as she fumbled with her camera and took the scene in front of her.

Victoria smiled softly, but a drop of disappointment and yearning wavered through her, she had so many pictures of him now, documenting his daily adventures and his wonderings at night, but she still had no idea what his name was.

Victoria had to find out his name, one way or another she had to find out. 

The End

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