It’s that or face Rose’s wrath
Mon Sep 18, 2017 15:37

Well, that hadn’t gone very well.

And probably Holland should have expected it, because when they were younger they wouldn’t have wanted to talk about this subject like this either. Monty and Bryony Keene had made it so easy for Holland to express themself in the way they were most comfortable with, but that didn’t mean they wanted to talk about it. For a while Holland had had to go to the elementary school guidance counselor and a different, outside psychologist. It was weird how people in mental health always wanted to talk to Holland about being queer, even when not everything that was bothering them was related to their gender.

Right. Better salvage this. Holland sprang up from their chair and followed Dade into the stacks. The contents of their bag clattered together with the sound of glass on glass. “You’re right, you’re not.” Holland got that. Purebloods had rules, and while Rose would probably commit homicide before letting anyone do something that could get Dade in trouble, Connor was not the same. And Holland had the impression that Mr. Farnon wasn’t the joining-PFLAG type of parent.

Bryony was. They still sent her brochures in the mail sometimes.

But for Dade, expression was a safety issue. Holland was familiar with that too, just not personally. “I’m not you,” Holland repeated, keeping their voice quiet because they were in a library, “but I was young and newly not-cisgendered once. If you have questions or want to talk about anything, I am literally the best person in school for that.” Not to overstate their importance. It was just a fact. “Or Maverick Buchannan—he’s in Cetus, like you. I just want you to know it’s okay.”

Holland took a breath. “That’s all I wanted to say, and I’m not going to bring it up again unless you do first. Oh, and I have something for you. Here.” They reached into their bag and took out a bottle of lavender nail polish (the label called the shade “Oh-la-lilac!”) and a travel bottle of nail polish remover. Holland put both in Dade’s hand and gave a small smile. “Old trick. If you wear closed-toed shoes, no one can see it if you paint your toenails. Use it, or don’t, up to you, but keep the bottle. It’s yours.”

  • 'Have to' is such a strong phrase - Dade, Mon Sep 18 14:58
    Holland answered Dade’s question about midterm with things he only vaguely understood (they’d talked about different types of movies in Cultural Studies but he hadn’t been paying much attention). He... more
    • It’s that or face Rose’s wrath - Holland, Mon Sep 18 15:37
      • Holland followed him into the stacks and Dade was furious. He just wanted to be left alone and he wanted everyone to forget what happened over midterm and he wanted everything to be normal but Rose... more
        • So we agree on something - Holland, Mon Sep 18 17:07
          Holland had half expected Dade to refuse the nail polish, and been prepared to refuse his refusal, so it was a surprise and a relief when he pocketed it. He was probably going to run away now, and... more
          • Sometimes I'm agreeable - Dade, Thu Sep 21 06:46
            Wow Holland said a lot of words. Wow. Dade’s hazel eyes grew very round as Holland explained gender, which was something that Dade had previously been entirely sure did not require any explanation.... more
            • Once in a blue moon - Holland, Thu Sep 21 16:28
              Dade was quiet for a long time. Holland waited. They would’ve preferred to have this conversation sitting down, but the stacks seemed more private, so that was all right. They read the titles of the... more
              • So Rose thought he might be ‘questioning his gender’ or the way he ‘expressed his gender’. Dade scowled. He didn’t even know what that meant. He had mostly followed along with Holland’s explanation... more
                • Is it made of blue cheese? - Holland, Fri Sep 29 04:00
                  Dade was back to looking surly, which Holland supposed shouldn’t surprise them. It seemed to be Rose’s brother’s default attitude. Just like how Rose defaulted to stubbornness, and Connor... more
                  • Blue cheese isn't that blue - Dade, Sat Sep 30 15:48
                    Well if this was what Rose thought was helpful, Dade didn’t want to see what Rose thought of as unhelpful . The helpful thing would have been to just ignore it and move on (okay, the yelling part had ... more
                    • Maybe the moon is Swiss cheese - Holland, Sat Sep 30 19:19
                      Holland maintained a practiced composure while Dade got defensive. Ah, shit. Dade might actually be some flavor of gender non-conforming. If he didn’t identify at all with what Holland had said, the... more
                      • I don't think the Swiss are smurfs - Dade, Sat Oct 14 15:21
                        Nope this was bad. Very bad. Holland kept talking and Dade just felt more and more uncomfortable. He kind of wanted to ask more questions, but he also very much did not want to ask more questions.... more
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