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Dekas - Hype Man Fashion Montage


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“You know, you could go back to what you were doing before. Anyone who sees you like this and thinks that would be wrong isn’t worth your time, Dekas.”


Dekas sighed and gave his best approximation of a humanoid smile to Simon, then looked away remembering every time he’d told him he didn’t have to try and match everyone else’s expressions like that if he didn’t want to.


“I am alright. I chose to come here. Adapting to a culture’s normality is also my choice. I look good in gold, anyway.”


“You do. And you looked good in blue before that. But you also look uncomfortable when you move your arms, and you’ve mentioned that the wing binding brings you pain on more than one occasion. I can tell that no matter how much you like what you’re doing, you’re not nearly as happy as you were when I first met you. It’s probably exhausting to constantly be uncomfortable to comfort everyone else.”


Dekas sighed. “I will live. But I appreciate your concern.”


Simon shook his head. Dekas was a surprisingly stubborn bird once he’d decided on something given how gentle he also was. And it was about that moment that the human hummed in thought. “You’re inclined to continue with clothes. I hear you and support that. But we might both be stupid.” 


“Don’t be mean to yourself. We both know we’re not stupid.”


“Have you ever considered trying out different styles, though? Finding something that you might actually like?”


Dekas was quiet, thinking, “Okay, we both might be a little stupid for not thinking of that. In my defense, I know nothing about style, my people don’t wear clothes. It’s not something I really thought about.”


He smirked. “You just accidentally implied that I was stupider than you.”


“You’re hardly stupider. Just much worse at math.”


“Yes, but I don’t need to understand advanced calculus to understand style.”


He tilted his head slightly. “Do you? Understand style? I have no frame of reference.”


“If you weren’t so genuine I’d think you actually insulted me twice in a row now,” a beat. “I can learn. Besides we’re not trying to make you stylish in a way that would please anyone but yourself. If you’re happy, then even the tackiest option is a look. And I know someone who might be able to help make comfortable uniform alterations for you.”


“You don’t have to, Simon.”


“But I want to. I’d like to see you be done with classes and then be peppy when you come to say hello again. That was the highlight of my day sometimes. You’re lethargic in comparison, and it’s time we made some attempts to fix that,” Simon stood and pulled Dekas up from where he was sitting, it went from being almost eye level to the Aurelian towering nearly a foot taller than him. “The first thing we should do is remove the wing bind. You’re not doing that anymore. It hurts, and you hate it. Save it for when it’s actually necessary. Right now it’s not.”


“People tend to touch when I don’t bind the wings.”


“Throw your wings back at them if they do that, then. They’ll learn your boundaries much faster if they get a wing smack and a mouthful of feathers, and you get the satisfaction of knowing they probably won’t do it again. If they do, then you can file harassment when possible. And you should.”


“I don’t like it. But they’re just curious.” 


Simon squinted at him, “You don’t touch people out of nowhere just because you’re curious. Because you’re a reasonable person. You deserve better. Say it.”


“I… deserve better.”


“Put more oomph into it!”


“I deserve better!”


“Yeah you do, my man! Let’s go!”


The absolute confidence about it made Dekas forget that there were other people in that coffee shop that saw whatever just happened. Once they were outside, he was helping him remove it only to throw it in the nearest trash, and dared Dekas to protest.


He opened his beak to do so, then awkwardly shrugged and stretched his wings behind him.


Simon offered an arm and Dekas locked arms with him easily. “Thank you.”


“Don’t thank me, we haven’t even had our fashion montage yet.”


“I’m… sorry, our what?”


He didn’t elaborate, just laughed and pulled him along, confusion and all. Dekas wasn’t sure what he was planning. Because truthfully he couldn’t imagine the regular places to get clothes would have any of them fitted to the Aurelian form.


But it turned out he needn’t have worried. Because he brought him to a holodeck made for this type of interaction and put it on a setting that allowed him to look through things as though in a real store.


“I really don’t know how this works. The picking things thing. I know how the holodeck works.”


“Just go wild. Pick colors, or patterns you think are neat and go from there.”


Dekas very tentatively glanced around, then back to Simon. Part of this whole Starfleet thing was to try new things, and he’d tried a whole lot of new things. But somehow this one was giving him anxiety. 


“Pretend you’re trying to get me to buy something. Sell me on it.”


The human tapped his nose in thought then nodded, “Computer, give me the fanciest handlebar mustache you can conjure up, make it blue.” And on his face appeared a terribly fancy blue mustache, which he began to twirl theatrically. Before using a voice he probably considered ‘posh’ although it was much sillier. “Well, good afternoon, what luck that a fine gentleman as yourself has found himself in my establishment.”


Dekas had to work very hard not to devolve into laughter instantly.


“I need a new look, but I’m not sure what I like.”


“You’ve come to the right place!” Simon scanned the room and picked a random rack of clothes, dragged him over to it as he started pulling items off of it, and shoving a few things at him. “Give these a try,” he gave it one more look and found one which he cringed at and threw behind him. “Not that one. I don’t know why we even stock that here, it’s atrocious. Someone so dashing like yourself deserves only the best.”


“Do they account for the wings?”


“Computer, make all shirt options have a wide-open back, and put on an appropriate soundtrack for a montage.” The holographic options changed to at least allow for freeing his wings in a way that was sure to be more comfortable than the style Dekas used currently. Somewhere in the background, there was what sounded like very upbeat synthy music from Earth’s 1980s era. It did feel pretty appropriate. “They do now, sir! Now go, go, go. Try some on.” Simon was actively pushing him toward the changing room space. 


“Simon, what is happening!” Dekas laughed but did as he was told.


The first outfit he tried was a little too heavy even with the modifications. The next few didn’t quite suit the shape of an Aurelian aesthetically. Some of them were too boring, or too bright and clashed with his already too bright feathers.


He didn’t like long sleeves much, sleeves in general were iffy. And most pants were a hassle with talons on his feet. Heavy fabrics were too warm. Some colors didn’t match well with bright red. But for every critique he had about something while he posed for him, Simon had another set of options, and a smile and a compliment to offer. It was improving his mood significantly from the way he’d felt recently.


Except for the outfit he’d just handed him and immediately made it clear that he was being ridiculous. The pattern didn’t match anything, the color was a horrendous choice for anyone ever. The sunglasses and backward cap just really didn’t do it either. It was something that caused a record scratch, whatever that meant. Simon was laughing hysterically about it.


“Yeah, I’m just going to go try something else on.” He waited until Simon was looking at him and made a peace sign at him and went back in to allow him to get a grip. 


Dekas however sighed a little tired. He wondered if he was just meant to be slightly uncomfortable with it all for the time he’d be in Starfleet. And he was only a cadet, he could imagine that wouldn’t be a great time. So he didn’t step out of the fitting room as quickly as he had with almost everything else.


Simon noticed this, and talked more like himself than whatever character he was playing with to help.


“Not feeling it?”


“I… don’t think I was meant to be comfortable here.”


“That's quitter talk. We’ll figure it out. Even if it’s not today. You have a few more years, and I’m making it a personal mission to be sure you’re comfortable before you get assigned anywhere. Even if we have to try everything to find it.” Suddenly he was quiet.


“Wh— Okay you are thinking, I can hear you thinking.”


“I just realized something. I’ve been giving you things that are traditionally more masculine in frame and style because that’s what I tend to enjoy. And there ARE other options that I completely forgot about that I think you might like better based on all of your criticisms. I don’t know why it didn’t occur to me earlier. It is 2393, I need to get with the times. Stay there.”


Dekas listened and stayed where he was. Admittedly a little anxious waiting, and he startled when he had things once again shoved into his hands. “What if I don’t like them?”


“Then we try again a different day, but I’m almost certain that we just figured it out. Trust me.”


He took a deep breath and nodded. “I trust you.”


The first thing he noticed was the fact that he hadn’t handed him pants, he’d handed him a skirt. His feet didn’t caught on the fabric. And it was flowy, freeing, fun. And the shirt didn’t have any sleeves, it just went easily around his neck. The other detail was that it was cropped a bit higher. In the mirror he looked very, very pretty.


He’d seen people wearing these types of things around. But he’d never considered them on himself, and they hadn’t crossed his mind during this process. But he almost didn’t leave, caught by his own reflection. Which he was truly seeing for the first time in months.


“I hope your silence is a good one?”


“It’s a very good one,” he straightened himself out and stepped out to show him.


“Dekas you look…” he got a little pink in the cheeks, “marvelous.”




“Yeah. Yes. Although I think I have a shirt that might match better.”


In a very surprising turn of events, Simon removed his own shirt, easily tore off the sleeves, and ripped a line down the back of it for the wings.


The Aurelian started laughing, “Wait, hold on, I am not taking your shirt. You’re not leaving without a shirt, Simon.”


“Don’t worry about it, I always have an extra one with me. Put it on.”


He was so adamant about it that Dekas could not argue. He was right, though. It did match better. And when he stepped back out for the last time, he had a different shirt on. Apparently he really did keep an extra with him. The backpack made sense now.


“Okay, you win. I look marvelous. Surprised that you ripped your clothes so easily. I didn’t realize you were that strong.”


“Oh, I’m not, I just order all my shirts in the same fabric of Captain Kirk’s old uniform. Partially because they’re comfortable. Mostly for the just in case of getting into a scuffle. I’m constantly vigilant.”


“You’re constantly weird. I’ll never be able to order a shirt anywhere without remembering this as an option. The texture is surprisingly soft.”


“Yeah it’s part of why I like them.”


Dekas did his best approximation of a smile and then pulled his human friend into a big hug, wings wrapping around him a little as well. Affection which was easily returned. “And it’s part of why I like you. You might just be my favorite human. Don’t tell the others.”


Simon sighed with contentment. “Secret’s safe with me.”


“Thank you.”


“Oh, this was my pleasure, Bird-Man. Any time.”


They broke the hug after another moment, “I’ll hold you to that. But next time you’re getting a montage. Whatever that is.”

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