Can it be "wrong" when it's a circle?
Fri Feb 2, 2018 22:24

The other girl started closing her books and looked like she was getting all ready to come along, and Marley’s grin widened at the sight. Yes, finally, they would get to hang out again and have some tasty ice cream together and talk and hear all about each other’s summers-- Except then Claudia stopped and asked about Teal. That was a big change of topic. But Marley had literally zero excuse to say that she wasn’t able to steer around and over and through abrupt topic changes, since she was literally the reason for topic changes like eighty percent of the time, which became like ninety percent when it came to her friendship with Claudia. So although she was surprised, her grin stuck around, although it slid from ‘happy/excited’ over to ‘happy/confused’.

“Ye… well… no, actually,” she confided, still grinning but with a little sigh, and sunk back down onto her chair. Well, technically onto her leg, which she folded up onto her chair, because then she wasn’t fully sitting down in a never-mind not-going-to-get-ice-cream kinda way but just partially sitting down while still being propped up in an I-guess-we-can-talk-a-bit-more but-ice-cream-is-still-a-go-okay? kinda way. “We only really had one date, last term. And, like, we wrote each other a lot, and we were even close by in the same state for a bit ‘cause I spent a lot of the summer driving around with Mum. But she didn’t ask to hang out or go out or whatever, even though I told her how close I was. I didn’t ask her, either - it felt awkward, you know? Like, I don’t wanna repeat the whole Connor thing,” the name still felt gross in her mouth and her nose automatically wrinkled, “and assume Teal wants to go out with me and keep asking her if actually she doesn’t at all. I want to be asked, not do the asking part myself.”

Being asked on their first date by Teal had been a really unique experience for Marley. She’d never been asked before, and, sure, technically there had been a Veritaserum accident in the potions lab and technically that was what had helped Teal to ask her, but regardless, it had left her with a bubbly, skittery feeling. It had been nice to be asked. “But I don’t want to assume that just because she isn’t asking it means that she doesn’t like me still,” she continued on, idly swirling her fingers across the tabletop and back and forth against the edge of her notebook. “Holland said that maybe Teal just didn’t tell her parents yet that we went on a date at all and so maybe she feels awkward, too. But Holland also thinks that if Teal didn’t tell her parents, she would’ve told me that, because that would be the safest smartest way to proceed so that I don’t out her to her family by accident…”

Gosh, now she was just talking herself in circles! “Dating is confusing,” Marley declared. “Going on a date was fun, and all the before-date was fine since we were, like, Veritaserumed and stuff, so it was less weird somehow, but the whole after-date part is super confusing. Like, what are we even supposed to do now?” That wasn’t exactly a smooth conclusion, and ending on a semi-rhetorical question wasn’t exactly a proper way to end anything, but she had no idea how else to sum it up. She tapped her fingers lightly on her notebook cover, a smile curling up her lips again. “Sorry, I rambled at you. Again. Why’d you ask? Have you been dating anyone since - y’know?” She couldn’t bring herself to say his name out loud again. Marley had done a mostly good job of pretending Connor didn’t exist, but she couldn’t pretend to Claudia. She and her best friend had too much shared history with him, and it was bizarre but not pretend-away-able. She couldn’t even fault Claudia for it dating him, because neither of them had known Connor was such a racist badword and Claudia had broken up with him as soon as she found out.

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