James was sitting across from Keith, chin in his hand as he watched the pedestrian traffic with a distant expression. Keith chewed on a french fry and watched James silently - he'd stopped talking a full minute prior because James was gone, and he didn't know why.
(more) Abruptly, James blinked and looked at Keith. "Sorry, what?" he said, and Keith took a drink.
"What's gotten into you today?" Keith asked, and James sighed, tapped his fingers on the table and then shifted so he wasn't looking out the window any longer. "You're weirdly quiet."
"You're weird," James retorted. Keith gave a shrug, popping another fry in his mouth.
"No arguments there. You okay?"
"Yes," James said, in that automatic tone that Keith knew well. "I'm fine, it's fine." He waved his hand in the air before him. "What were you saying?"
"You're worried about something." Keith cocked his head and studied James intently. "Us?"
At that, James's mouth quirked into a soft smile. "Nah," he said. "Not exactly." He tapped his fingers against his face, chin in hand, before sighing. "More, me."
"Yeah, I'm-" James winced for a moment, then soldiered on. "I'm a liability, Keith, maybe I should take a step back-"
Keith straightened in the booth so suddenly it caused the flatware to clatter. That made James lift his head sharply and stare at him, eyes wide.
"A /liability/?" Keith said, and there wasn't anger in his tone, just disbelief. "Why would you think that?"
"I'm human," James said, and shrugged, before putting both arms on the table before him. "Maybe..." he struggled for a moment, gaze distant. "Maybe you'd be better off if I wasn't."
Keith stared at him, and then sighed. "Griffin, you fucking idiot," he said. "I love you just the way you are."(less)