No surprises here
Fri Mar 2, 2018 10:17

“Don’t worry, Dar-danny-us, I have complete faith in Holland. We know each other very well.” Generally irritated by the undesirable progression of his day and Ruben’s continued insistence on being an integral part of his misery, Danny indulged in an eye roll. This particular jibe was otherwise easy to ignore: He was obviously aware Ruben had dated Holland, and sure there had been a time Danny was concerned about the intimacy of their relationship, but this was no longer the case. His main objection in the present moment was still that Ruben assumed he had a place in threatening Danny.

If anyone was going to threaten him, it really ought to be Emmett. Danny would consider that acceptable. It hadn’t happened, but Danny assumed the threat was implied by their friendship history and dynamic: if he ever did hurt Holland, as unlikely as he expected that to be, the natural next step would be answering to Emmett. Of course Emmett didn’t have Ruben’s tendencies towards dominance and violence, which explained the Swede’s want to threaten Danny, but not his need. Emmett hadn’t mentioned Danny’s ‘fancy’ life, or made references to wizarding cults, but then Emmett wasn’t the keenest astronomer in the observatory: he didn’t look at the big picture. Maybe he hadn’t even considered what sort of impact Danny’s background would have on his relationship with Holland, and vice versa. He guessed that would explain Ruben’s need.

Dardanius chewed the inside of his lower lip and frowned at the foliage still scattered across the table. It began to twitch and roll gently, then Danny slowly - wandlessly, nonverbally - levitated the scraps of flora just above the table top. Maybe Ruben was just getting involved in business that did not concern him for the cheap thrill of a threat. Maybe he really did want to protect Holland (a trait with which Danny could identify). Whatever the motive behind his presence here, Ruben was right, damn him. Clearly the conversation with Claudia had gone terribly, and Danny’s reactions to Ruben had been to laugh then become agitated. He had suggested to Holland he could handle anyone who might object to their being together, yet initial evidence proved strongly otherwise. Danny exhaled, gathering the leaves together to swirl in a slow-motion spiral between the seventh years.

“Okay,” Danny said eventually. He transferred his frown from the foliage to Ruben. “If you’re just looking for a fight,” he said, his manner calmer than it had been since he’d sat down to talk to Claudia, his expression calculating, “you can take your vegetation and clear off.” He spoke authoritatively, without malice, because he was choosing to believe that Ruben’s threat was at least partially because he cared about Holland. Not necessarily romantically (or whatever Ruben’s warped interpretation of romance entailed) but enough that they didn’t want Holland to get hurt. That put them on the same side.

Danny sat up a bit straighter. “Sure, the cult is bound to make a nuisance of itself,” he said seriously, without being dismissive. “I’ll handle it.” He looked levelly across the table, expecting Ruben to challenge his assertion. He knew he hadn’t done a great job so far. It was Day One, and Danny had been underprepared. He wouldn’t make that mistake again. “If Holland gets hurt,” Danny transfigured the leaves into bubbles - he remembered how much the same spell had irritated Ruben before - and sent them gliding serenely towards the Aquila, “I’ll consider it my failing.” If Ruben didn’t think that Danny took Holland’s safety seriously, if he considered that Danny was ignorant of the capabilities of those who claimed a shared heritage, then perhaps an invitation for Ruben to follow through on his threat would help convince him otherwise.

  • But surely not a surprise - Ruben, Thu Mar 1 22:52
    Danny’s face had the expression of someone trying very hard not to have any expression at all. The other boy was failing, obviously, because Ruben had spent literally over a decade tangled up in... more
    • No surprises here - Danny, Fri Mar 2 10:17
      • I'll try harder next time - Ruben, Sat Mar 17 16:48
        "If you're just looking for a fight-" If? Hah. He was pretty much always looking for a fight. There was not much point in day-to-day life if the majority of those days didn't contain something to... more
        • You nailed it - Danny, Sun Mar 18 16:26
          It was plain to Danny that Ruben was going to hold him personally responsible for any hypothetical harm that came Holland’s way (this was not at all surprising; of course Ruben would blame Danny for... more
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