Voting with our feet
Fri Dec 7, 2018 08:34

Dorian had been raised in a household that spoke three languages, in varying combinations. He knew a lot about what was considered rude and what was not when deploying them. And he was not going to be lectured on that by some snobby, presumably monolingual white boy. Or rather… he wasn’t going to be happy about being lectured about it. He couldn’t actually think of anything suitable to say.

As well as not giving Simon the requisite impression that he could take a massive hike and, if there was room for it next to the extremely large rod that was presumably already there, jam his opinion back up his backside, this had the unfortunate side effect of giving Tatya a chance to get in there first. He suspected rational arguments were not going to work on a bigot like Simon, but he felt equally sure that trading insults was never the way to go either. Simon’s retort was subtle enough that he almost missed it - he only caught it because he assumed from context that Simon was bound to say something insulting.

There were a lot of things he wanted to say. He wanted to tell Simon that he was, so far, the only person to have a problem with them. He wanted to say that perceived rudeness did not justify rudeness in return. He wanted to call Simon several insulting words in a variety of languages. But he did not. The moments had passed for the first two retorts, they were now just in the territory of hurling insults, and he was not going to be part of that, however tempting it was. Besides, Tatya had requested to leave.
“I think I have luck already, in the group of people I get to be part of,” he replied, thanking whatever little lucky star it was that at least somewhat had his back, that was trying to make up for the misfortune of being stuck with Matthieu by giving him friends like Jehan and Tatya. For not landing him in a year group with people like Simon. “Good day, Mr. Mordue,” he added, the title emphasised pointedly, given that the person receiving it had dared to lecture him on manners.

“Pognali, Tanushka,” he nodded, confident enough that Simon would not be able to distinguish the second word as a pet name to risk its use.

As they walked away, his adrenaline ebbed slightly. His hands were sticky with sweat, and he could feel them shaking. He knew he would have felt much worse had he not defended Tatya, but he didn’t feel great. Why was the reward for bravery, more often than not, feeling sick to the stomach? Yes, he had done the right thing, and he could console himself that he was a good person. But being a good person had never helped him much up until now. It had never saved him from being hurt. And he was now, potentially, a good person with an older and more powerful enemy, and that was an uncomfortably familiar and unpleasant position to be in.

“He - he or anyone - says bad things to you, you tell me,” he said softly to Tatya.

  • So it seems.Simon and Tatiana , Wed Dec 5 20:25
    Simon was surprised by the level of pushback from the pair. “Privately certainly,” said Simon, thinking fast. “But it’s distracting to everyone else when she’s jabbering out that loudly in class and... more
    • Voting with our feet — Dorian, Fri Dec 7 08:34
      • And being baffled.Tatiana, Mon Dec 10 18:54
        Tatiana’s bravado lasted a moment longer than Dorian’s after they walked away. Then she turned to her friend, her pale eyes wide with hurt and confusion. “Ya ne ponimayu,” she said. I don’t... more
        • Some people are bafflingDorian, Wed Dec 12 08:45
          Once they were a suitable distance from Simon, Dorian slowed a little. When Tatya began talked he stopped. He turned gripping her shoulders and making sure she was looking at him properly. “You did... more
          • And boring.Tatiana, Thu Dec 13 20:21
            Tatiana was atypically silent as Dorian talked, explaining that she had not really done anything except - be. That the problem was, in fact, that she had spoken Russian, and that Simon was, in... more
            • And meanDorian, Fri Dec 14 09:22
              Dorian felt like his heart had just melted when Tatya declared the impossibility of anyone disliking him. He knew she tended towards hyperbole in her speech, but it still was such a sweet thought -... more
              • And not smart.Tatiana, Tue Dec 18 16:25
                Tatiana relaxed as Dorian explained that Nathaniel Mordue could go another day without facing her wrath. She nodded absently at the comment that brothers could be very different. “This true,” she... more
                • We're well shot of them thenDorian, Fri Dec 21 16:12
                  “Ya ponimayu,” Dorian nodded. Tatya’s explanation was not only laced with Russian but also analogy, and it was clear she was struggling to find words in a language that they shared to explain the... more
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