But I like jinxes. And hexes.
Mon Apr 29, 2019 15:43

It could be much worse, Claudia consoled herself. It was just a ridiculous project - mandatory, and with a theoretically random assignment of partners - so there was nothing awkward about working with Kit. It would, in some ways, be more awkward to be partnered with any of the boys in class, especially with those immense and detailed diagrams looming at the front of the hall. Working with Connor or with Caleb was often her preference in their shared classes, but Claudia could think of little more mortifying or upsetting than working with either of them now. Connor seemed out of spirits with his assigned partner as he’d sloped off; Claudia decided it was for the best they were assigned partner rather than choosing their own. She at least tolerated all but one of the girls in the upper years (although Marley and Teal both had potential to end up in a real-life all female parenting team, which … was fine. Just fine). The only person she’d have a real problem working with was Dakota, Claudia thought, just as something shot through her that felt too much like sympathy to be anything else. If this class was awful for every student in the room, surely it was worst for Dakota.

Resolutely not turning in her seat to see who ended up partnering Dak anyone, Claudia shoved that errant emotion firmly aside and was relieved when Kit returned … which was not a sensation she’d experienced in response to this event before. Her relief was inevitably short-lived. Firstly, Kit dumped all their accessories on the floor, rather than on any of the perfectly serviceable desks surrounding them. Then she touched her skirt. That was an unusual behavior alone, but taking into account that the skirt cost more than everything Kit was wearing, probably twice over, Claudia couldn’t help but be bothered by it. Next Kit told Claudia the skirt was nice. Inwardly the sixth year cringed. She’d originally thought the skirt was nice, too, but now Kit thought it was nice. Kit, the girl who wore leggings with cartoon animals on them. What might be a compliment coming from others felt insulting as it fell from Kit’s face. She couldn’t even bring herself to acknowledge the endorsement, let alone express gratitude in response. Claudia resolved in that moment never to wear the skirt again. She would gift it to Kit.

Barely collected from that unnecessary interlude, Claudia managed to continue focusing on Kit as she hurriedly expressed, “I’m super duper ready, like the readiest. I like little kids a lot and I’m really good with babies!” She doubted Kit was as ready as she proclaimed, considering the younger girl had apparently not understood that the presence of menstruation was a result of the absence of conception, but at least she was enthusiastic. Claudia was not so passionate. She was ambivalent towards small children, especially babies. At least a younger child could hold a simplified version of a conversation and understand basic instruction. Babies didn’t do anything. Claudia had no negative feelings towards them, but neither could she confess to liking them, particularly.

She bent forwards and picked the eerily faceless doll from the floor as Kit continued talking, and then Claudia paused, placed the doll on the desk, and looked at Kit with a quizzical expression. She thought the Lyra said, “Did you get to see Danny’s baby before he gave it to the lesbians?” Which was about the most preposterous combination of words that had ever been uttered together in one sentence, never mind Kit had actually said lesbian aloud. Great Merlin, did she have no decorum at all?

Certain she was blushing a fraction at the use of such language - which was, after all, the only appropriate reaction - Claudia’s brow was dipped in confusion as she sought to clarify, “What are you talking about?” She assumed Kit was making a reference to when their older siblings had completed this class together (she knew Danny had worked with Kaye, but had no idea who Marissa’s partner had been). Certainly Claudia had seen the doll in passing, and its uncanny features that were familiar in a family album sort of way, but she had no idea why Kit was referencing women who were primarily attracted to other women. She realized a moment too late that she’d invited Kit to explain one of her nonsensical ramblings, which was almost certainly not a good idea, but with one hand still resting on the improperly formed infant substitute it was too late for Claudia to do anything but embrace her fate.

  • Don't jinx it - Kit, Sat Apr 27 11:50
    Working with Claudia was great because she was pretty much almost as cool as Marissa. Claudia was really pretty and always said the right things (which was not something Kit was good at) and even... more
    • But I like jinxes. And hexes. - Claudia, Mon Apr 29 15:43
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