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Derek Orton
If I must
Sat Oct 9, 2010 10:28am

Summer was generally a good time. Derek was easy going enough that most times were good times. This summer hadn't been bad. In fact, it had been as most summers.

Except he'd finally noticed.

One party after another, he started realizing that there were more men than women. He'd never particularly cared about this. It never caught his attention before. He started doing a count. Three men over for dinner, one woman. Twenty men laughing in the crowd, but sixteen women. And he started watching his mother too. How she'd spend a lot of time with one at each planned event. Giving her attention to them. How she'd all but ignore others by the end of the night and how there was always something to show them. A collectible or a painting she'd just brought back from Europe. And dad... Dad was only there a couple of times, usually busy with work. Those times, she'd give her attention to him, holding his hand between both of hers as they mingled among others.

Derek was only bothered by it from time to time, trying to forget about these little observations. Hours ago, he would have come back perfectly content with his summer, ready to exchange summer stories with Austin or go find Madison Connor and tell her about how he'd met the star of her favorite team.

But then Lance--their family accountant-- showed up to say goodbye. Derek was confused by this. What did Lance care if he was leaving for school? Really, he was a nice guy. He'd sent Derek some camping crap a couple years ago when he'd written. As he stepped into the fireplace, though, he caught a glimpse of something. Lance's fingers trailing down his mother's palm, ending in him grasping her hand. Something he'd seen hormonal students do here, trying to be discreet with it by hiding it under desks.

Derek normally closed his eyes before travelling by floo. This time, he forced them to stay open, swearing as he pulled away that he witnessed more. Lance pulling his mom in, kissing her neck.

It made Derek sick to his stomach. Where was Dad? And then he remembered... work. He sat at the table, looking up towards the staff. The Headmaster. He was ugly, Derek realized. Why had his mom been here? She was giving him some sort of tickets, he remembered, but why were they near the library? The Headmaster's office was closer to the Court, where they sat now.

Derek didn't listen to any of the announcements as he glared, his mind connecting what he thought he'd seen with Lance, replaced by his hideous Headmaster.

The clatter of plates and cups brought him back, though he still couldn't quite understand it all. Didn't his parents love each other? They always got mushy on trips. He'd seen them kiss. His dad bought all sorts of gifts for Mom. So why?

He talked to the plate, getting pizza and fries in return with a glass of pumpkin juice. He looked up, finally seeing who else was there. "Hey!" he said, putting on a fake smile, thoughts of Lance tainting his entire impression of summer.

    • Oh, you mustAustin Harding, Sat Oct 9 10:54am
      Austin had bounded into the Court, quickly locating his friend and making his way over. He glanced up at the staff table, Jered and Sarah already in their seats behind the Heads, still looking all... more
      • Harding? Did you forget your last name?Derek Orton, Sat Oct 9 11:13am
        Derek took a big bite of his pizza. It was only half chewed when Austin asked what was up. "Nothing," he said, figuring he was being asked about summer. "We were out in San Fran, but only for a week. ... more
        • Austin cast Derek a side glance before shrugging and dropping it. If the boy didn't want to talk then Austin wasn't about to push it. That wasn't a guy thing to do. Sure, he talked to Jered about... more
          • Maybe you're just having an identity crisisDerek Orton, Sat Oct 9 11:39am
            Derek laughed at Penny being gone. This was a real distraction. One he hadn't had for ages. He always did like Austin. It was lucky with all the jerks in Rakin that he got one of the cool ones. But... more
            • Not now, but I wasAustin, Sat Oct 9 12:01pm
              Austin frowned at Derek again until the realization hit him and his features slacked as his mouthed opened up wide and round. With all the commotion of last year, he had never gotten around to... more
              • Well... welcome back!Derek Orton, Sat Oct 9 3:04pm
                It was like one of those Spanish soap operas that Rosie, their cook, watched int he kitchen while she worked. Derek's eyes widened at each new piece of information. Jered was Chase... the school... more
                • It's great to be here!Austin, Sat Oct 9 3:19pm
                  Austin grinned at Derek's reacted, sure there was food sticking through his teeth but he didn't care. It was such a relief to be able to tell people about the crazy life he'd been living past 5 and a ... more
                  • Can't say I agree entirelyDerek Orton, Sat Oct 9 3:32pm
                    "Well good," he said. "I don't want to deal with someone new just because your brother's here now." He finished off the pizza in a few large bites. "And I don't think I'll do quidditch this year," he ... more
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