Squad Leader (Y/n) had an odd habit. Well, she had a few. She often chewed the ends of her pencils off, and then was confused to why her eraser was gone, and another was the way she gnawed on her bottom lip when she was concentrating, or swirled a lock of her (h/c) hair when she read. It was these simple things that Levi noticed. But the one that vexed him most was the way she subconsciously bounced her leg when she was sitting at the officers table.
It often caused a few things on the table to shift, and his tea to ripple, but none of the other officers seemed to notice. In fact, it was because of his tea that Levi even noticed the strange habit. He had been sitting peacefully in the mess hall late one night with a book and a cup of tea when (Y/n) joined him, also with a book. She was only in her night gown and her (h/c) hair was pulled up in a messy bun at the nape of her neck.
The rest of the hall was dark, and Levi was the only one with a candle, and she had politely asked if she could join him. Ever the gentleman, he motioned towards the empty benches and said, “Well I think the table can fit one more in.” (Y/n) chuckled softly and sat on one end, her head propped up one of her hands, the other occasionally flipping pages. Eventually, the soft sound of pages turning and the soft flickering light of his candle and the white noise of (Y/n)’s soft breaths made Levi start to nod off.
That’s when he noticed a gentle rattle on the table, and his eyes shot open. Normally, the rattle would mean that a titan was approaching with its huge, ponderous feet. But this was different; the rattle was constant and therefore didn’t signify a titan. Searching for the annoying sound, his gaze found the teacup which was rocking against the wooden tabletop.
Curiously, he lifted the porcelain cup up, and the sound stopped. Scrunching his eyebrows slightly, he set it back on the table, and the sound started again. (Y/n) noticing his movement out of the corner of her eye, she asked, “Is something wrong?”
Setting the cup back on the table, noticing the rattle had stopped, and withholding a sigh as he realized where it had come from, said, “No.” with that, he got up and brought the candle over to the squad leader. “I’m going to bed. You can take care of this.”
“Goodnight Sir,” (Y/n) called to his retreating form. He grunted and raised his hand to her as he disappeared into the darkness.
Ever since that day, Levi couldn’t help but stare at (Y/n) during meetings briefings as she chewed her pencil and bounced her leg. It irritated him to no end. Once during a meeting, Hanji had caught him staring at the woman as she chatted with a friend. The annoying somehow friend of his sidled over to him and nudged the man in the ribs with her elbow. Levi brushed her off with an irritated, “What?”
“Do you like a certain Squad leader?” She teased. “You’ve been staring at (Y/n) for fifteen minutes.”
Hanji wrinkled her nose. “Eyy Levi that’s a little stalkerish.”
“I’m not stalking her Shitty Glasses, I’m observing,” Levi spat. “Notice how she chews her pencil when she’s not writing. She twirls her hair when she’s thinking. But,” he paused, and looked over to Hanji, who had one eyebrow quirked and a sort of odd look of curiosity in her eyes. “What is she doing when she’s bouncing her leg?”
“Bouncing her…leg?” Hanji asked, confused.
“Yes!” Levi sighed in exasperation. “She does it all the time, and it irritates me. I want to know what makes her do it so I can stop her from doing it ever again.” Hanji only chuckled. Levi had returned his gaze to (Y/n). She was now seated in a chair with a book, her legs crossed.
It was Hanji’s goal from then on to set up Levi and (Y/n)
Her opportunity came sooner than expected. A cluster of titans was approaching, and Erwin was setting up a squad to take care of them, and all Squad leaders were to report. (Y/n) was already seated at the end of the table, and Levi had not yet shown up. Hurriedly, Hanji darted to the seat where Levi usually sat. A few other people she had persuaded to join her quickly took up all the spaces at the table, bar the one next to (Y/n). By the time Levi strolled in, his only option was to squeeze in next to the woman.
He shot Hanji a look when he spotted the predicament. She was hard pressed to bite back a giggle. Glowering, Levi walked stiffly over to (Y/n) and sat in the uncomfortable space, sandwiched between the woman, and some other officer he barely remember the name of. (Y/n) offered him a small smile, and returned to her papers. Once everyone was gathered, Erwin started the meeting.
“As you all know, a cluster of titans is approaching from the North,” the commander started. There were nods from those assembled and Erwin continued. “They could provide useful information to us if they are captured, and Squad Leader Hanji has requested to take two squads to take two of the smaller titans alive.” There were murmurs.
“Why two?” Nanaba asked from his place.
“More people to spread out and take the titan. There will be fewer casualties if the titan is distracted by more than one titan.”
A few arguments broke out, and (Y/n)’s leg started to tap against the wooden floor. Levi stiffened. He wasn’t even paying attention to the arguments breaking out around the table; all that he was noticing was that infernal tapping.
After a moment, his hand flashed out and he placed his fingers on the upper part of (Y/n)’s thigh. She squeaked, and turned her wide eyes in his direction. His bored expression didn’t leave his face as he said, “Your leg was moving. It was distracting.”
(Y/n) flushed, and inwardly, Levi smirked.