Holland Keene
Some things are better left unsaid
Fri Jan 26, 2018 17:09

Holland was barely out of the History of Magic classroom when Danny took their hand without preamble. It was like being shocked without static, a buzzing feeling that coursed through them from their hand and then was gone. They didn’t stop him from leading them behind a statue and into a passageway. Holland wasn’t overly fond of small spaces or being abruptly dragged into secluded areas, but right now, they felt at ease.

At least until Danny started speaking, and then they felt somewhere between nervous and embarrassed. “Yeah,” Holland agreed, both with the statement and the sentiment. Things had been weird, and it had been distracting, and they couldn’t stop thinking about Danny either. It was easier this time than it had been when things were awkward between them last year. Holland suspected, although there was no real way of knowing, that this was because Danny was no longer dating Marissa. If anyone had known last year, it could have been painful for Marissa, and for Danny.

Now—well, Holland still wasn’t keen for their friends to find out now, even if they weren’t sure what there was to be found out. That Danny liked them? That Holland—that Holland what? That Holland had started to lean into the affectionate touches Danny had been initiating? That despite never being physical before, their immediate reaction was to stay close rather than move away or tell him to stop? That Holland was glad no one could tell when they blushed under their foundation, which happened whenever they made eye contact with Danny for more than a few seconds? That sometimes the way he looked at them made them feel like they’d focused their telescope on something too bright and too near? That when they were alone together, it often felt to Holland like they were waiting for thunder to rumble or a punchline to be told—but they’d left it at just the lightning, at the setup to a joke they wouldn’t be told the end of?

“I think this time it’s my fault, though,” Holland admitted, with the kind of laugh that you made not because something was funny, but because you needed to fill space. What was this? What was Danny doing? He had pulled them into one of the passageways without a word, and for an instant Holland—their pulse had reacted like something was going to happen, something that necessitated the privacy of a secret passageway.

But Danny had just apologized for what was essentially nothing. Holland met his gaze and blushed, hidden again by their makeup, but Danny was the one who looked away first; past them, not at them. He was still holding their hand.

Gently, and not without a swift feeling of loss, Holland pulled their hand back. “But it’s not like—I mean, I’m pretty sure Marissa wasn’t the only reason you said nothing was going to happen the first time we talked about this.”

  • I feel like things were left unsaid - Dardanius Dubois, Fri Jan 26 15:24
    This term had been weird so far. Danny thought he’d made a good start, accomplishing commendable progress getting over Marissa, and ignoring the butterflies he still got whenever he was around... more
    • Some things are better left unsaid - Holland Keene, Fri Jan 26 17:09
      • They say actions speak louder than words - Dardanius, Sat Jan 27 09:31
        Danny distantly registered that his hand felt empty now, and then suddenly they were talking about this. Not just about it being awkward, and them both acknowledging that, but about reasons. Which in ... more
        • Then try taking action - Holland, Sat Jan 27 11:41
          In the spring, Danny’s attraction to Holland didn’t matter became of Marissa, but that clearly wasn’t the case anymore. Holland hadn’t outright said they meant Danny when they talked to Marissa the... more
          • That sounds like an encouragement - Danny, Sat Jan 27 14:18
            Danny blinked. “I don’t know,” he replied, almost automatically, feeling like a mooncalf caught in wandlight. He hadn’t thought about it - he hadn’t realized there was any reason for him to think... more
            • But you’re still all talk - Holland, Sat Jan 27 20:11
              How was that fair? All dating was a maybe. You went on a date to see if maybe you liked each other enough in that way to go on another date, and if you still liked each other then maybe the... more
              • I feel some discussion is warranted - Danny, Sun Jan 28 06:22
                He hadn’t given much thought to pulling Holland aside for this conversation: he had been driven by distraction, and confusion. If forced to give a reason for being in the passages at that moment he... more
                • Talk is cheap - Holland, Sun Jan 28 11:40
                  “Right,” Holland said curtly, ignoring the sinking sensation in their stomach. “ I don’t know wasn’t the same as “no,” but it was close enough. Holland had never asked anyone out before (well, there... more
                  • So show me some action - Danny, Sun Jan 28 15:38
                    Danny emitted a vexed huff of dissatisfaction. He understood why Holland wasn’t thrilled with that response, but what did they want him to say? That sure they could just go on a few dates like nobody ... more
                    • Is that a proposition? - Holland, Sun Jan 28 20:34
                      Holland once again had the feeling, like they had gotten last year in the Lyra practice room, that they were having this conversation wrong—like they were being tested on a chapter they hadn’t... more
                      • Let's say Yes - Danny, Mon Jan 29 09:53
                        “I am interested .” Finally Holland had said something definitive. “I like you.” The tightness in Danny’s chest was alleviated, and it was sensational to hear those words spoken, but they did not... more
                        • I can’t just yet - Holland, Mon Jan 29 12:41
                          Holland sighed. Sure, now that Danny had said they should both just forget about this and Holland had agreed, why not explore a scenario in which they had gone on successful dates and wanted to keep... more
                          • Tease - Danny, Tue Jan 30 06:44
                            “Right,” he agreed immediately that Holland had practise handling situations. They had previously discussed that dating was easier for Danny than it was for Holland; just because it was suddenly less ... more
                            • You started it - Holland, Tue Jan 30 12:05
                              “I remember,” Holland said, in a tone suggesting there was no need for elaboration. First-year Holland had been able to handle first-year Danny well enough for him to get over his prejudicial... more
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