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Nathaniel (with a bit of Simon)
I'd approve, except for it making you ill.
Sat May 5, 2018 21:50

Nathaniel had not known at first how the interviews with their families were going to be conducted, but all in all, he thought it had worked out as well as it could. He missed seeing Uncle Alexander and Aunt Avery, but was glad he had been able to see his own mama and brother semi-privately, not trying to talk to everyone and also do so at the same time that Simon and Sylvia did.

Of course, there were drawbacks even when one eliminated Uncle Alexander and Aunt Avery from consideration. Nathaniel thought it would have been much easier to keep a straight face with his cousins right there, and everyone about – as it was, he had been just forcefully reminded of how much he wanted to be home, and how tied his hands felt, and how much he hated having them tied. He had lied to his mother about the sickness, saying that the fever had not been very bad and that he had gotten better faster than he in fact had, and possibly slightly exaggerated his own well-being generally a bit before trying to focus the conversation on home.

Aside from being miserable with homesickness while looking into his living room without being able to go into it properly, Christmas had so far been going well. He had enjoyed his time with his cousins, and the gift exchanges (though he had yet to give Sylvia her real gift, which he had persuaded his mother to send him instead of Simon), and games, and the rearrangement of the Hall – something he liked much better than the final version, which took away the intimacy of being able to sit together near a fire and put him more in mind of a very large party of the sort he did not really look forward to attending in future. Which, he supposed, it was – a Christmas party. Intimacy would be rude.

He sat with Sylvia anyway, to preserve some illusion of a family meal, and Simon joined them soon. After greetings, he turned his eyes to his plate and was startled to see it look familiar, and not because it was the one which had been before him just a few glances earlier. The color was different now, the pattern was different – they just didn’t happen to be patterns and colors that were unfamiliar to him. They were home plates.

He looked up at Sylvia just as she seemed to realize first that this had happened, then the significance of it. “Yes,” he said, his tone full of sympathy. “I’m sorry, Sylvia – but it’s not that bad.” Maybe for her it wouldn’t be. Maybe. If they knew she was getting ill before she got really ill, maybe Healer Kapoor could dose her enough to avert the worst symptoms before they happened. “I’ll read to you, too, if you want,” he added, unable to think of anything more comforting to say.

“And I’ll get Mother and Father to send anything you especially like from home,” said Simon, and Nathaniel felt rather outclassed. It was good Simon had thought of it, though – the objective was to make being ill as minimally bad as possible for Sylvia, and probably at this point also Simon even if he didn’t know it yet, and it didn’t really matter which of them had the better ideas. Even if he still wished he had.

  • How about we make it more like home?Sylvia Mordue, Mon Apr 23 09:40
    Sylvia had felt that the end of term couldn’t come fast enough. She had been very keen to go home and see her parents anyway, and then Nate had got sick, which had been dreadful. She had initially... more
    • I'd approve, except for it making you ill. — Nathaniel (with a bit of Simon), Sat May 5 21:50
      • Sylvia was a little surprised by Nate’s tone being so full of sympathy and concern. She was actually quite pleased to see the plates. But of course, overall, having the illness wasn’t good. It might... more
        • That’s the spirit.Simon and Nathaniel , Tue May 8 20:39
          Nathaniel and Sylvia had, on examination, almost precisely the same eyes, but no matter how long they continued to do so, it never ceased to surprise Simon slightly whenever he noticed it. It was, he ... more
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