Even with a chill pill?
Tue Nov 28, 2017 22:55

Having known Ruben for over a year now, Holland should have been able to predict that their comment would give him an excuse (not that he often waited for excuses for most behavior) to strut around. It caught them off guard anyway, and they did a worse job of pretending not to look as he struck a few centerfold-worthy poses. There was nothing wrong with appreciating aesthetics. Just because Holland wasn’t going to buy didn’t mean they couldn’t window shop.

Besides, Ruben was dating Kaye. At least, most of the school was pretty sure they were dating. Heather had been going around saying that the two of them cuddled in the Aquila Common Room sometimes. Camilla Reynolds, who was a much more reliable source of information, had confirmed that story, so Holland was inclined to believe it was true. If they weren’t dating, Kaye and Ruben certainly held hands in public more than most platonic friends did. Sounding simultaneously disappointed and annoyed, Heather had told Holland that Kaye had very rudely not given Heather, her roommate (proclaimed in a scandalized tone), a straight answer about her relationship status.

Like her roommate, Heather seemed to have more than a platonic interest in Ruben, and unlike most teenagers with crushes, didn’t seem to have qualms about not keeping that information to herself. She had promptly asked Holland for their perspective on the situation, and had been further disappointed when Holland had told her they didn’t really have an opinion. Ruben and Kaye were both their friends, and if Holland was being honest, they made a lot of sense together, in terms of both personalities and aesthetics. Holland was on fairly good terms with Ruben now, but, as they told a put-out Heather, that didn’t mean they wanted to get back together with him or anything.

Mercifully, Heather had yet to be granted a gossip column in Rocky Voices. Holland had no doubt that she would only use it to create more drama and mayhem than the school already had. Now that Camilla and EJ had gotten together too, all of the great will-they-won’t-they couples at RMI were effectively paired off. Heather was probably just looking for something new and interesting to talk about. There was little doubt that some kind of love triangle would be music to Heather’s ears. The last two parties alone had given her much to hypothetically write about.

Now that Holland thought about it, this was the third consecutive Marissa party at which they had talked to Ruben. And the second one to which he had barely worn anything. Maybe someone should tell Marissa that she needed to implement a dress code for Ruben at her next event.

Although if someone was going to say anything of that sort to Marissa, it probably would not be Holland, they decided appreciatively. They’d been joking when they made the Witch Weekly comment, but he could make it as a model if he wanted. Holland made a dismissive sound. “I think most people with functioning eyes would think you’re suitable for it,” they quipped back on a laugh, partly sarcastic and partly complimentary, only one of those parts intentional.

Now, let me see, you are dressed more for… a beach picnic? Both very comfy, and very classy, ja? You look good.

Anticipating that they might, at some point today, get in the transformed pool, Holland had skipped their regular makeup routine in favor of carnation pink lipstick, waterproof eyeliner, and magically waterproof brow pencil. This left them uncharacteristically without foundation as their first line of defense against blushing.

“Thanks,” Holland said, feeling their cheeks go pink. There were a lot of other students here wearing more revealing outfits, and Holland had spent so much effort picking this one. Any compliment was vindicating. “You look good.” “I’m not much for swimming, so yeah, ‘beach picnic’ was the vibe I was going for.” Holland’s mother would’ve worn a large floppy sun hat to an event like this, decorated with a ribbon and some magically-preserved flowers, but Holland was not the kind of person who would wear a sun hat to an event in a sunless location. Not that they were complaining; they’d rather not have to wear sunscreen inside. “I wouldn’t say no to volleyball, though.”

  • Can't really chill when I'm this hot - Ruben, Mon Nov 27 22:44
    Holland seemed equally unimpressed with the chair. Their immediate refusal didn’t exactly come as a surprise to Ruben, but was still amusing enough that he cracked up in response. Teeth flashing,... more
    • Even with a chill pill? - Holland, Tue Nov 28 22:55
      • Ruben prided himself on his ability to turn heads. Both in terms of physical superiority (admittedly his most recent act of enforced head-turning wasn’t too noteworthy, as it had only resulted in Kit ... more
        • I have no objections to that - Holland, Wed Dec 6 18:07
          “ High praise, coming from you. I will treasure the memory of it. ” This was flirting. This was totally flirting and Holland had to decide what to do with that while they blushed a little more. There ... more
          • I have an objection - Dardanius Dubois, Fri Dec 8 16:28
            Kaye actually took his hand, which was definitely a surprise. Of course by now he should have learned not to have any expectations when it came to Kaye, but old habits die hard. He helped her out the ... more
            • Whatever is there to object to? - Ruben, Sat Dec 9 22:32
              Holland accepted the ball from him, and provided the excellent reassurance that volleyball was more about hitting than throwing. “Ja, I am, thank you.” Ruben’s grin widened as he matched their pace... more
              • I don’t see anything objectionable here - Holland, Mon Dec 11 11:38
                The first time he got it wrong, Holland patiently corrected Ruben’s serving stance. Not that they were that much of an expert on volleyball, but they had played the sport and Ruben had not. The... more
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