Holland Keene
Usually you just ask me
Thu May 24, 2018 16:27

After all the financial aid news had come out and they’d talked to their parents—and Marissa and Danny, who weren’t as influential to the decision but whose plans and opinions mattered to Holland—they had chosen MIT. Dad was happy, because even though it wasn’t Carnegie Mellon, Boston wasn’t on the other side of the country from Pittsburgh. A ten hour drive, give or take, or a two hour plane trip, or one second by Floo or Apparition. Magical transportation to CalTech took the same amount of time, but if Monty ever had to make the trip without Bryony, he’d have an easier time getting to MIT.

Holland didn’t like being idle, so even though they had sent out their decision letter already, they hadn’t been. They’d submitted applications for a few on-campus jobs; there was a position in LGBTQ+ student affairs at the Center for Student Diversity that Holland thought they stood a good chance at getting, and an undergrad opening at the college’s magical library. They’d contacted their program director, Professor Winola Locke, about research. The response was encouraging: most cursebreaking students participated in research, and there were study abroad opportunities in countries that Holland was interesting in going to.

The list of countries Holland wanted to visit was separate from the list of countries Monty said Holland was allowed to visit. The initial draft of the list had included only the two empirically most queer-friendly countries, Canada and Sweden, until Holland had pointed out that he let them be in America, which was ranked much lower on the queer-friendliness index that Monty had read. The revised version of the list included the thirty-eight countries which preceded the United States in that ranking. Holland had unwarranted optimism about their and Bryony’s combined ability to convince him to allow exceptions.

Sooner than August, IMPs were coming up, so they had been studying for those seven exams. They were most worried about Defense Against the Dark Arts. Although the independent study let Holland create an enchanted object they would actually use, and although Holland was doing a lot of research for the project, the curriculum they had developed for this semester was narrowly focused on Dark Detectors. They were reviewing the last four years’ worth of notes with some of the other seventh years, which was helping, but not as much as regular classes would help. They were reviewing their notes for all of their subject. If Holland could get Outstandings on all of their OWLs, they might be able to skip some college courses, which would either lighten their courseload or free up their schedule to take more fun classes. Holland doubted that their tendency to fill up their schedule would change when they were at MIT, which had so many more options than RMI.

After an Ancient Runes review session in which Holland was fairly sure they’d written down every single rune they knew, Holland went to the Diner for lunch. Spotting Danny at a table, Holland automatically joined him, but he was concentrating on the letter he was reading so intently that he didn’t look up even when they sat down. “Hey,” they replied, unable to keep the amusement out of their voice. “What’s got you so focused?”

  • What to do? - Dardanius Dubois, Thu May 24 13:01
    Several of the seventh years had received very important mail recently, much of it determining how students would be spending their immediate futures after graduating RMI. That morning, Dardanius... more
    • Usually you just ask me - Holland Keene, Thu May 24 16:27
      • So what do you think? - Dardanius, Fri May 25 05:22
        Holland’s voice roused Danny from his thoughts; he smiled at them, looking up from the pages that were starting to look creased around the edges. “I received a letter from my grandfather this... more
        • That I’m bad at subject lines - Holland, Fri May 25 12:49
          At their core, Holland balked at the nepotism. They personally would have a problem with accepting a career—as opposed to an hourly cashiering job—from a relative. Networking opportunities had been... more
          • We have that in common - Danny, Sat May 26 16:03
            Whoever decided that eighteen year olds were sufficiently mature to pick their own futures had clearly forgotten what it was like to be eighteen. Holland immediately identified two of the drawbacks... more
            • We should work on that - Holland, Sun May 27 19:51
              One function of elitist societies obsessed with genealogy was to provide opportunities to its members based on family connections rather than personal abilities. Holland’s opinion of that method of... more
              • Should we take a class? - Danny, Tue May 29 10:12
                Danny tried not to bristle at the insinuation that if he accepted this job he would be not be acting in the company’s best interest; he had more of a reason to want Cirrus to be successful than most. ... more
                • We could just graduate - Holland, Tue May 29 15:03
                  Not knowing Leo Tallow personally, Holland would have to defer to Danny’s opinion here. Given their understanding of how pureblood society worked, though, Holland thought it likely that Leo would... more
                  • We had so little time to shine - Danny, Tue May 29 16:22
                    Finally Holland’s expression sprung out of a frown, and at a juncture that Danny would not have expected to elicit a grin if he was talking to anyone else. Right . Holland couldn’t separate the... more
                    • I think we made the most of it - Holland, Tue Jun 5 14:26
                      “It would,” Holland agreed, “but you could do it.” Danny had many qualities that Holland admired; his work ethic was not one of them. Working for his grandfather’s company was a situation which could ... more
                      • We gave it our best - Danny, Tue Jun 5 16:39
                        Holland agreed that this opportunity at Cirrus would be ‘a lot’ to deal with, but they also said he could do it. Danny felt soothed by the comment: they might not approve of him taking the position,... more
                        • We set the bar high - Holland, Wed Jun 6 02:25
                          Danny didn’t laugh. Oh. Holland knew from the boggarts that they didn’t have a monopoly on insecurity in the relationship. They had their share, but they were working to address those issues. Over... more
                          • Astronomically high - Danny, Thu Jun 7 16:33
                            When Holland moved to sit near him, Danny at first felt foolish that he’d let his idle concerns become known to them. Worrying about them meeting someone else wouldn’t help: nothing that Danny did... more
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