You're pretty sure he was cuter three years ago.
In a platonic way, you mean, you don't really find boys cute in that other way, and okay you only got a glimpse so you can't judge anyway and...
He's not cute anymore, is the thing. He's not small and scrawny and bug-eyed with shock, standing there like a tool as a water-holding device plummets down to become his new hat. He's...
You can float and he can't and you still never hear him coming, and he always notices you. He moves like -- you can't explain -- he glides. He's not as fast as Dave and he's not half as dangerous as Rose, or hell, even any of the other trolls left.
When he was cute you didn't give him a second thought. Girls being cute was good, boys being cute was irrelevant. (Vriska presumably being both girl-cute and... and Vriska, that was...) Now you think about his hatesex thing, what it'd be like if he still felt that, if he hadn't moved on, you think of those jagged tusks at your throat and you know you'd be fucked -- both meanings -- because there would be absolutely no way you'd risk struggling to free yourself. You'd just have to stay very still and endure, and entrust yourself to the hope that he doesn't hate you enough to really mess you up. His fingers end in hooks, he can climb brick walls, leaves behind him rows of little holes and falling dust. Your skin's a bit frailer than that.
He's not that tall, he's about your size. He looks almost slender when clothed; you've seen him shirtless once and it was all tight, corded muscle rolling away under there -- not beefy-fakeish, it looked like he had braided steel cables running under his skin.
They attach in ways that aren't quite human, bunch and pull at his bones, at his joints, in angles and degrees of rotation that are subtly off, that say wrong wrong wrong. Cinema critics call it the Uncanny Valley and he's smack dab in the middle of it.
You want a better look, you want to see how the whole alien machine runs when moving, strifing maybe, the way you'd want a closer look at the chimney when you were a kid, until Dad gave up on nice warming fires and blocked it. You want to know what you're up against.
You're God Tier, is the thing, you could beat him up six ways to Sunday with a flick of your fingers (it'd be unfair, but you could.) And even if he got the drop on you, did the worst he could (not that you believe he'd want to), you'd just revive. (It wouldn't be fun but you've died several times already and it's not the end of the world.)
You'll win if you use the Breath, and so you promise you won't, and you grin like your heart isn't in your throat and you take off running. "Tag, you're it!"
He splutters in that silly blustery startled way and you get to the transportalizer, a head start to the laboratories, dim and dusty and full of a hundred shadows.
He's going to catch you. You won't hear him coming and then it'll be too late. Maybe he'll pounce, tackle you to the floor, maybe he'll trap you against a wall, push you up until only your toes brush the ground, he looks the same size but his bones and his muscles are dense like he's used to double the gravity, he's going to catch you and you're not going to be able to escape.
You hope when you kiss him he won't bite, he might take your lips right off. You know he'll never mean to. You like that you can be sure of that about him. But knowing he might slip up anyway...
Knowing that is... You don't really want to get hurt, you don't like pain, but...
You're not thinking of that right now. You've got to concentrate on running, so he won't think you threw it on purpose and it doesn't count and you're mocking him somehow, and it's hard to run with a raging erection.