I don't "bark". I bite.
Sun Nov 19, 2017 23:01

To Ruben’s knowledge, he was the only one signed up to do basically a fight demo for the school talent show. That was a bit weird. Like, he was obviously far superior in terms of martial arts and his physical abilities, but there were some pretty entertaining (and even a few talented) pairings at Dueling Club that he would’ve expected to be interested in throwing sparks on stage… Then again, the very concept of a talent show was ‘a bit weird’ to begin with. The Swede could safely say that he had never participated in, or even heard of, such an event before. They sure hadn’t needed anything like it at Durmstrang; all the students there knew how to evaluate their own skills and assess where they fit in against the others. Just as well that Ruben’s act would be the most eye-catching and unique among the lineup of artsy, musicy, yawny pieces that the rest of RMI’s populace was taking part in. If the point of a talent show was to make students feel good about themselves, like they were worth something, then Ruben was happy to play the part of bringing them back to reality, where they were not better than him.

He couldn’t remember what exactly Claudia was doing for the show. He had seen both of the Dubois siblings’ names during his skim through the sign-up sheet, but the younger the year, the less attention Ruben had paid to the descriptions of what each student was doing. Enough to remember that Claudia fell in the same artsy, musicy, yawny category as everyone else, but not enough to pick out whatever specific thing she was doing. Her approach of the piano had made him briefly speculate that it was in the subcategory of musicy, but she then proceeded to crawl underneath and start digging around for what he assumed to be some lost item, so maybe not.

The older years, on the other hand, Ruben had put much more focus towards, and so could practically recite off the acts for everyone in and around his year-group. The blind idiot was going to do some partnered dance (he was hoping for a funny trip off the stage, but Marissa would probably keep that from happening, sigh); Heather, Zoey, and Maverick were submitting a dress, a clump of string, and a rock, respectively (knowing Kalle’s luck, his little brother would wind up with his very average drawings sandwiched between them in the art gallery and subsequently sink into the shadows of obscurity); Saad was just reading a poem (it was bound to be just as confusing and/or boring out loud as his poems always were in the student paper). See? He wouldn’t even need a program to follow along with the show. Although, if his office decor was anything to go by, Tennant would probably force some kind of program on them all just to feel like he was in charge and everything was orderly and blah blah blah.

(While all of those students could easily be lumped under an argument of him seeking to follow that advice about how you should “know your enemies better than your friends” or “study your enemies’ present state to determine their future” or however that saying went, there was one name on the list that didn’t fit. Holland was signed up to do a charms display, which he was looking forward to seeing. Having only guesses as to what exactly Holland might have prepared, he had tried occasionally to coax a hint or two or eight out of them, but with little success. The most he’d gotten was a “wait and see!”. Ugh.)

“How about I stab your brother and then we’ll see if you still want to talk to me?”

His fingers, which had still been idly tracing around the side of the punching bag, actually stopped at that. That was… unexpected. Turning to face Claudia head-on, one eyebrow arched, Ruben looked her over intently for a long moment, eyes moving from the uncomfortable set of her face to the paper clutched in her hands to her shoes and back up. Then he burst out laughing.

“Fan, little girl, you have a bite!” he teased once he had gotten a breath in. Still grinning widely, Ruben went on to explain, “Yes, there was a small stabbing, but your brother took good shots at me, too. Fighting is a two sided thing, you understand? Both sides are ‘at fault’--” he made air quotes around the words, citing from his Not Mom’s attempted lecture, although not taking anything else from that particular ignorable rant “--and then when both are satisfied, it is done, they are good again. All is good with us. And should be with us, also,” he added, pointing vaguely between himself and Claudia with another snicker. “But Mikael is like a baby. If you ever touch him, I will end you so far that not even your ghost can come back.” Ruben’s tone of voice was still light, but his grin had definitely changed to something more sinister. For all he knew, Claudia’s sentence had been rhetorical or sarcastic, but in the off chance that she was seriously considering harming Kalle… well. He couldn’t risk it. He and Danny hadn’t been on good terms for long enough that he wouldn’t willingly throw it aside in favour of destroying Danny’s sister if she posed any threat to his brother.

  • You're barking up the wrong tree - Claudia, Thu Nov 16 07:11
    He’s just a person, Claudia calmly reminded herself as she continued walking towards the piano, the room around her swaying a little as she did so. She tried to block Ruben out, to just focus on her... more
    • I don't "bark". I bite. - Ruben, Sun Nov 19 23:01
      • The we'll need to muzzle you - Claudia, Tue Nov 21 14:54
        The moment the words left her lips, Claudia stopped longing for the ground to swallow her up, and started wishing for instant death. Because even if she suddenly got transported somewhere calm and... more
        • I'd like to see you try - Ruben, Tue Nov 21 23:08
          He was surprised to observe how quickly the colour left Claudia’s face, though also not surprised at all, considering how their interaction so far had gone. Good Lord, was the girl really this easily ... more
          • I have minions - Claudia, Wed Nov 22 08:18
            He’d said his part, why couldn’t he just let her leave? Claudia managed to take a few unsteady steps towards the exit. She had all the physiological symptoms that signalled fainting was imminent: her ... more
            • I'll take all of them on! - Ruben, Wed Nov 22 22:46
              Or apparently not, because the kid shouted out an answer to a question he hadn’t asked and then collapsed. Ruben had been facing her as she walked off, because that was the polite thing to do, much... more
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