What else can we do?
Fri May 18, 2018 15:53

Rose squeaked again. It was a sound that she had always made when she was particularly excited about something, but Rose didn’t do overwhelming enthusiasm with great frequency. She was the sort of person who worked hard and took what came with working hard as the natural result of her effort. However, applying to university in the States was a crapshoot, more luck than not it seemed, and so her excitement was genuine and unexpected when Holland announced that they’d gotten into both MIT and CalTech. She knew that those two schools were the ones Holland had really been going for, the ones with cursebreaking programs known to be some of the best out there. Rose had momentarily considered cursebreaking, but it hadn’t caught her interest the way spell development had. Having Professor McKindy as a mentor helped a lot there, although she was sure he had helped Holland as well in some ways - or at least, Rose was sure that he had been more helpful than Marissa’s aunt in helping Holland this year.

“Merlin, congratulations Holland!” Impulsively and uncharacteristically, Rose threw her arms around Holland’s shoulders and gave them a quick squeeze before backing off, cheeks a little bit pink with mild embarrassment and excitement, all together. “You did it! We did it! We’re going to go to uni!” It was over. Rose couldn’t believe it. No more waiting and nervousness. It was done. All she had to do was make a decision.

That idea was a little sobering, and brought her mind back to the conversation Danny had with her shortly after Marissa had said she didn’t want to talk to Rose because Rose was taking college so seriously. He had said that she was afraid of not having a friend like Marissa again; he had pointed out that, unlike Marissa, Rose was not someone who made friends everywhere she went. She had resisted the idea at first before accepting grudgingly that it might have some merit - but now she felt kind of a pang for the first time as she realized that Danny had, for once in his life, been precisely correct in his analysis of a situation. The friend group that they’d grown into over the years was something that Rose didn’t want to live without. Except that Marissa didn’t want her anymore, and although she had gotten closer to Holland over the past year, they still weren’t close friends. There was Danny, but Merlin only knew what Danny was going to get up to after they graduated. And Emmett, but Rose didn’t know what Emmett wanted to do after school, and he was a year younger. Even if he weren’t a year younger, Rose’s two top choices for schools were not options for Emmett. He would never get into Harvard, and Tift was all girls, with no other school close by.

It wasn’t that Rose was no longer excited - she was still grinning, she still felt the adrenaline buzz, like she’d just caught the Snitch in a close match - but things were suddenly a lot more complicated than they had been at the beginning of Ancient Runes. It was as though the giant cloud of admissions anxiety that had been hanging over had only been masking a whole host of other things that somehow hadn’t been solved by her results.

“Do you know which one you’re going to choose?” the seventh-year asked curiously. She knew Holland was interested in both programs, but they were so far away. “It’d be weird to have Houses at uni, don’t you think?” Rose added referring to CalTech’s system of dividing their freshmen up into different Houses, where they would live for at least their first year at the university. Each House had separate traditions and a unique history, and it had honestly been one of the reasons that Rose had ultimately not applied to CalTech. Houses had been well and good at RMI, but she was ready to move on. “Although it would be weird to go to an all girls’ school as well,” Rose admitted, “and that’s definitely still on the table. No offense,” the girl added quickly, always a little shy about mentioning things that were gender-segregated around Holland.

  • What do we do? We read - Holland, Fri May 18 15:30
    Holland had thought Rose would answer with an enthusiastic “yes!,” so her tame response surprised them. Rose had always wanted to go to Harvard. Holland hadn’t sorted out any of their college choices ... more
    • What else can we do? - Rose, Fri May 18 15:53
      • Well, we could write - Holland, Fri May 18 16:30
        Rose suddenly hugged them, which startled Holland for the first second—Rose was the second-least physically affectionate member of the group, behind them—but then they relaxed. “We did it!” They had... more
        • Nah that seems silly - Rose, Fri May 18 20:25
          Of course Holland wanted to go to the school that would let them take more classes. Rose was entirely unsurprised. Although she did a lot of things, her course schedule was relatively light,... more
          • No silliness allowed - Holland, Fri May 18 21:37
            “That’s awesome,” Holland affirmed. They didn’t think they’d get anywhere near as good offers from CalTech or MIT, but they were bigger schools than Tifts, and Rose had incredible grades. Holland’s... more
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