You asked for meetcute prompts, so how about Joe's internet stops working but he's expecting an important email or needs to download something so he can work offline and so goes to his neighbour to ask if he can use his wifi real quick, and ends up just staying there all day because his neighbour is a hot Italian.
Because my internet has been broken since yesterday and I had to go to the office to work today, and really could have done with a sexy neighbour with wifi instead.
'Oh no-no no no no no,' Joe chanted, looking frantically between his router and the cheerful little dinosaur on his screen informing him the wifi he'd paid an outrageous sum of money to have installed the day before he moved into his new flat was no longer working.
In the tiny oasis he'd carved between moving boxes and wrapped up furniture, just a rug and his laptop and the final handwritten edits of his thesis, Joe pressed his hands to his cheeks and fought against the sudden and consuming need to cry.
This couldn't be happening. Not with half an hour to go before the deadline. It was some cruel cosmic joke, that the wifi had worked perfectly when all he'd asked it to do was keep spotify running as he moved his boxes in, only to give up the second he truly needed it.
Joe ground the heels of his hands into his eyes and breathed. He'd already tried restarting the router, twice, but maybe the third time would be the charm? Maybe he could--
Someone knocked on the door. For a moment, Joe considered ignoring it. Time was running away from him, he needed to focus.
The tiny pixel dinosaur blinked at him from the useless brick of his laptop, and Joe heaved himself to his feet, putting space between himself and it before he did something he'd truly regret.
'Ah-' the man at Joe's front door stepped back in surprise when Joe yanked it open. He hadn't been particularly close, but Joe supposed he had been quite brisk in opening the door. 'Hello. I'm Nicky.'
Joe blinked at him. In less fraught circumstances he would have had very different thoughts about Nicky's face. Right now however, all he could manage was confusion.
'Can I help you?' Joe managed, struggling to force an expression of polite interest onto his face. He could feel eye twitch, but hoped it would come across as some kind of charming affectation. From the look on Nicky's face, he wasn't particularly successful.
'I'm sorry to bother you,' Nicky said, still looking at him strangely. Joe couldn't blame him. 'I saw you moving in as I was leaving earlier, but couldn't stop. I just wanted to offer my assistance, should you need it, in getting settled.'
That was... unexpected. Sweet. Somewhat useless at the moment, but very nice.
'That's kind of you,' Joe said on a sigh, pushing his hand into his hair to rub at his scalp. Nicky watched the movement of his hand, and Joe wondered just how wild his curls had gotten to attract a stranger's attention like that. 'I would be grateful for some help later, probably, but I'm having a bit of a crisis at the moment and I can't even begin to think about moving in.'
'A crisis?' asked Nicky, looking away from Joe's hair sharply. Joe hadn't realised how intense Nicky's grey eyes were until he was looking directly into them. 'Are you sure there's nothing I can do?'
Joe laughed, a horrible little pained sound.
'Unless you happen to be a genius when it comes to fixing wifi, I think I'm out of luck.'
Nicky clicked his tongue sympathetically, and nodded.
'It is a nightmare when it rains,' said Nicky, like that was a completely normal thing to say when someone tells you their wifi is broken.
'Rain?' Joe hadn't even noticed, but with his attention drawn to it, suddenly all he could hear was the clatter of rain against the windows.
'It breaks the wifi in the building. Something to do with the copper wires, I don't truly understand,' Nicky said, smiling very slightly. 'I can help though, I think.'
'You can fix it?' asked Joe, seizing on the one part of the conversation he had the brain space to process.
'Not fix it, no,' said Nicky, but he continued speaking before disappointment could fully choke Joe. 'But it happens enough that my friend gave me a.. a... thing. I do not remember what he called it. It gives wifi, but not wifi like you get from the phone line? For short times only.'
It was like hearing his baba try to explain something technical, Joe couldn't help but smile at him.
'A dongle?' Joe suggested, feeling his smile grow wider when Nicky shrugged his shoulders. They were very broad shoulders, Joe noticed distantly.
'As you say. If you need it, you are welcome to use it? I only live one floor up.'
'Are you serious?' asked Joe, already halfway back into his flat to throw his things together. Nicky laughed from the doorway.
I have a flock of chickens and I purposely give them names that have fallen out of fashion. So far there's been Bunty, Beatrice, Penny, Gertrude, Calliope, Dorothy, and Blanche.
Not to be a downer but tbh I feel like that kind of contributes to older names being seen as ridiculous and no longer suitable as a name for actual women. Also giving animals completely normal, currently used names is 100x funnier IMO because you can be talking about your pets without anyone realising they're not human for an embarassingly long time.