Over text (We live in the same city but he's currently away), without seeming desperate.
Most Helpful Guy
Asking such a question plainly does not exude desperation. But I suppose you're looking for an indirect and less personal line that will somehow yield a direct, genuine response.
The first idea that comes to mind is an absurd hypothetical question. "If you had the power to teleport anywhere in the world only once with one person by your side, where would you go and who would you take?" Something along those lines.
Or you can be straight to the point and ask if he sees you as more than just a friend.0