...Motion carried
Mon Jul 24, 2017 20:17

Russell didn’t think that he’d ever had such a sudden reversal from burning-face-of-awkward-shame to freezing-face-of-awkward-death as when Ruben flipped him the finger. Hot and cold were opposites. Some people he had overheard referring to them as opposites as if their being opposites meant that they lined up perfectly with other things that were also opposites. But for Russell, the opposite of hot and cold wasn’t the same as good and bad or fight and flight or anything like that. Nope. Hot and cold were always both bad (normal, but not neutral) and always both flight. That is, if flight could mean moving vertically.

Rather than actively run away, Russell’s version of flight tended to mean ‘shrinking’, which he was now doing via slouching further down. His shoulders were slouchy. His neck was slouchy. Even his knees were slouchy. His bones were basically rubber. Russell blamed this on a mix of being bad at people plus hiding inside a lot, because supposedly sunlight was good for physical development, at least if it didn’t blind you first. Russell right now was not blaming it on anything, however, because he was too busy slouching and wishing it was possible to melt instead of hearing Holland scolding him. (Of course they were mad at him, not at Emmett, because Emmett had said that Holland would only be mad if Emmett was the one who interrupted them. But apparently Emmett had been wrong. That was disappointing. Russell was used to being disliked, but not to having people mad at him. Although maybe Emmett had lied about it just to make him screw up, which Russell could understand a little better.)

“I, uh, I,” he managed to squeak out, trying to look at Holland instead of at his bare toes and failing miserably predictably. Oh, no, now his heart was doing the slowing-down banging and falling from his throat into his stomach. For literally the first time he could remember it happening, Russell made the conscious, if very necessary, decision to take flight into a horizontal direction: he spun around, ran a few steps, tripped on his own foot again, fell over onto Jacob, pushed him out of the way, and all but jumped head-first into the nearest garbage bin.

When he finished puking up his dinner, he pushed his sunglasses back up on his nose and raised his head to see Jacob staring at him, looking very confused and holding an almost-empty bowl of chips, most of it being stuck to his pyjamas. Russell blushed again, grabbed a napkin to wipe up, and ran out into the Passageways. Having spent too much time last year wandering through them, he quickly got his bearings and turned down one of the darkest tunnels, where he tucked himself into a tight corner and let out an exhausted sigh. Jaws crawled down from his hair and began chewing on the neckline of his shirt.

A lot of new things had happened to him tonight. Russell was never going to a sleepover again. Or even leave his dorm, probably. He’d just live in Cetus forever. Without his blankets, since he’d forgotten them at the party, but he wasn’t going back now. Nope, nope, nope.

  • Or three - Holland, Sun Jul 23 22:45
    Ruben said he thought it would be easier to start on the left, like someone who had never tried to paint their nails of their dominant hand while the polish was still drying on the other one. Maybe... more
    • ...Motion carried - Russell, Mon Jul 24 20:17
      • This pleases me - Ruben, Mon Jul 24 21:38
        Still smirking, Ruben made a whining noise in the back of his throat when Holland whapped him. “Really?” His hand dropped soon after this. He didn’t wait to push his luck; in some ways, he was... more
        • Can’t say I disagree - Holland, Tue Jul 25 16:47
          Russell had seemed terribly nervous before Ruben told him to get lost, so maybe Holland should have been a little nicer when they talked to the boy. Or maybe not; after all, he’d decided to come... more
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