I can’t just yet
Mon Jan 29, 2018 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 dating? Never mind how they would get there, or any of the issues Danny had already raised. Did he expect Holland to talk him into further action, or was he posing a rhetorical question to persuade them that that would be, if not impossible, inadvisable?

Holland understood wanting to know what to expect, though, so maybe it wasn’t a bad idea to talk about this. Either it would help them both agree once and for all that there was no option, or—or something else. “Okay,” Holland said, entertaining the hypothetical. It seemed like Danny had jumped several months or years down the timeline, so they endeavored to do the same. Danny said he didn’t want them to have to deal with his community. It was sweet—and the irony that for once, Danny being protective made Holland feel something positive wasn’t lost on them—but Holland got the feeling that that wouldn’t be avoidable. Danny was Dardanius Dubois, which meant that at some point there would be a reckoning with pureblood society, one way or another. And if they were doing this, Holland wouldn’t want Danny to have to face it alone either. “Would that entail people being rude, or, like, actual danger?”

They could cope with the former. Holland had been out since childhood, and transphobic bigots didn’t pull punches toward gender-nonconforming people just because they were seven years old. People had just addressed their comments toward Bryony and Monty instead of toward Holland. Now Holland was older, and went places without their parents, they qualified as a target for strangers’ judgment. It didn’t happen much on or around Pearl Street, but over the past five years, Holland had overheard strangers commenting on how they presented. Within the safety of RMI, Holland would argue with people like Lucien; outside, they ignored it. Rudeness, they could handle.

The latter… well, Holland was less willing to go up against someone who meant them physical harm. Especially when magic was in play. One rarely heard of a Muggleborn or halfblooded magic-user becoming heavily invested in the Dark Arts; it was usually purebloods. Holland didn’t know enough about the Duboises and their assorted relatives to determine whether that would be a risk, but Danny seemed really concerned. Holland had asserted to him last year that they could handle themself, and that was true to an extent, but they’d rather not test their abilities.

Assuming a future in which they were successfully dating Danny, though, Holland supposed they would consider the risk of conflict worthwhile. Okay. So how would they cope with pureblood society if that were the case?

It was difficult to verbalize their resolve or their process. They just would handle it, the way they always did when people were rude to them, because they had to and because there was no other option. “Just because I haven’t had to deal with any of that at RMI doesn’t mean I can’t handle it,” Holland said evenly. They knew Marissa had had a hard time coping with Danny’s life outside of school, but Holland wasn’t Marissa. Everyone had always liked Marissa wherever she went; no offense intended to her, but Marissa didn’t know what to do when she wasn’t the popular one. The same wasn’t true for Holland. Danny’s family might not be thrilled about who Holland was, but there was no guarantee that that wouldn’t be the case with any other partner.

Besides what Holland might encounter, though, there was the question of what Danny’s involvement in pureblood society would be like in this hypothetical future. At that point it might not necessarily be an arena with which either of them had to concern themselves. “If you defied expectations,” Holland began, again invoking his phrasing but without sarcasm this time, “what would happen to you?” They needed all the facts, or at least informed speculation.

  • 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
      • 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
          • You can finish it - Danny, Tue Jan 30 14:29
            Holland laughed at Danny’s suggestion, which was definitely a reasonable reaction, although it also sounded suspiciously like Holland wasn’t instinctively and immediately ruling out that option. “But ... more
            • I think I will - Holland, Tue Jan 30 15:35
              Danny took Holland’s hand, and they had that sensation of being shocked again, like a shudder that went all the way down to the base of their spine. After the whole intense circuitous conversation... more
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