I’m better at transfiguration
Sun Feb 11, 2018 01:26

Dating Danny was going well enough—Holland had had fun on the last two dates, and they were still having fun, right now—talking to Danny was so easy, and felt so natural; Holland hadn’t been entirely sure that their dynamic would work outside of a friendship, but it did—but it wasn’t a status quo at which Holland was comfortable remaining. When it was just the two of them, things were great. Last night the three Lyras in their group had been hanging out in Danny’s dorm, and Danny had kissed them goodnight after Emmett left and it made them feel tingly all the way down to their toes. Holland had to look at the context, though: at the big picture. They were sure of how they felt now, but they were wary of getting invested in a relationship when they weren’t convinced of Danny’s level of investment.

Holland felt they had some reason to doubt how much he was going to put on the line. Last year, Marissa and Danny hadn’t waited until after the first date to tell their friends they were dating; practically the whole school had known within a day or two of him asking her out. That wasn’t the case now. Of course Holland was, naturally, a more private person, and they understood that the situation was different and so some amount of caution was smart, but Holland also didn’t want to be treated as though they were different.

Hence wanting to clarify today. Danny was apparently game to talk about things, and Holland took his hand on top of the table. A little thrill of anticipation jolted through their stomach, but then he started with “Three dates isn’t enough to tell how you feel about someone,” and Holland felt their heart sink a bit. They hadn’t expected that. Three dates might not be much time, but it was about as long as Holland was willing to feel uncertain. If all Danny was going to say was that he wasn’t sure yet, Holland had already decided on their answer.

Then he continued, and Holland’s stomach flipped again as he met their eyes. They smiled reflexively, cheeks growing warm. Oh. Okay, then. Consider them convinced of Danny’s level of interest.

Holland squeezed his hand. This was happening, then. Slowly, they found the words. “I almost wish I could say I wasn’t interested, because I know it’s going to be so much easier that way.” Telling their friends had gone well, but beyond them there was Claudia, and Danny’s parents, all of whom would likely have objections; beyond them was a larger group, unknown to Holland, with whom the situation would be even more difficult.

Holland had never been the kind of person who accepted easy, convenient answers, though.

With that in mind, they kept talking, dragging out the first word deliberately to give themself more time to compose an answer. “But… I’ve been having an amazing time with you.” Holland was nervous about things not working out too—for themself, for Danny, and for their friendship—but they also felt inordinately optimistic. There were, it felt, innumerable reasons why this might not work out. And yet. If Danny, who would be exposed to greater risk, was willing to take the chance, Holland was too. “If you’re in, then so am I.” They just needed to know he was willing to be out, too.

  • I've plenty of charm - Dardanius Dubois, Sat Feb 10 17:51
    Danny had dated before, but nothing with anywhere near as high-stakes as his first two dates with Holland. There were the usual concerns, about them not working out, about it potentially being weird... more
    • I’m better at transfiguration - Holland, Sun Feb 11 01:26
      • I see what you did there - Dardanius, Sun Feb 11 07:14
        “I almost wish I could say I wasn’t interested,” Holland said as Danny’s heart tried to beat its way up into his throat. It was a valid point: it would be so much easier to abandon this folly and... more
        • He was right: it was insane. It was insane that just over a year ago the two of them had discussed how he felt dating Marissa would be too antithetical to his upbringing; that two years ago he had... more
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