I must have had one
Wed Dec 13, 2017 15:28

Are you kidding me, Holland thought, with an extra modifier in the middle of the sentence. They couldn’t believe Danny was dragging Marissa into this—that he was insecure because she’d slept with Ruben but, apparently, not him yet. Holland didn’t need to know what their friends had and hadn’t done, although they did anyway because Marissa had talked to them about this too. She’d tried to apologize for the Ruben thing despite Holland repeatedly telling her that they didn’t need an apology. Things had been over between Holland and Ruben for months, after all. Holland had reminded Marissa of this before they agreed to accept the apology on the grounds that it would make Marissa feel better.

That had turned into a conversation about Marissa’s new relationship. Marissa had made her concerns clear: between the staff and the first-years she had tons of family around school, compared to Danny’s one sister, and sneaking around in broomsheds wasn’t how she wanted to do things with Danny. She’d said Danny was still upset about her and Ruben, but Holland hadn’t entirely believed her because it seemed so petty. How could Danny not see that the circumstances were different?

And as for Holland… there was one piece of information that jumped out as something they had shared with Ruben but not Danny. Few enough people at RMI knew Holland’s assigned sex. Four staff members, by necessity: Headmaster Bonilla, DH Nanda, Mr. Tennant, Medic Rock. Three students, by choice: Emmett, Ruben, Maverick. Danny was one of their best friends, and Holland trusted him to keep private information private, but they weren’t convinced he’d think about them the same way if he knew. People who knew—like their older family members who had known Holland before they came out—treated them differently, and Holland thought that might be especially true for their friends who grew up believing in the binary and strict gender roles. Danny might have guessed (after all, he had been around them throughout puberty) but Holland didn’t want to test that with certain knowledge.

If they met Danny now—if that meeting had been delayed six years, and seventeen-year-old Holland met a seventeen-year-old Danny with whom they had never been friends—Holland wasn’t sure they would be friends. Holland was less patient now than they had been at age eleven, less willing to educate when ignorance was thrown at them, less polite in correcting repeated misgendering. Lucien had proved that last year, although Holland had still given the upperclassman many chances to get it right before they’d finally confronted him.

Maybe some of this impatience had come from their having had Danny and the rest of their group as friends the last six years. Knowing that you had people at the end of the day made it easier to pass up other potential relationships. First-year Holland had felt like they couldn’t afford to not be nice; of-age Holland had no qualms about that.

Danny resented and hated that Holland had told their significant other things he didn’t know about them? Screw that. “You’re right,” Holland said flatly. “Ruben knows things about me that you don’t because he needed to.” They were sure the reverse was true: Marissa must know things about Danny that Holland didn’t. That was fine; that was how it should be. “What makes you feel entitled to the things I share with people I’m dating?”

  • What’s your point? - Danny, Wed Dec 13 03:59
    He hadn’t meant to say that last bit out loud; he had just been trying to come up with anything coherent, and that had been what his mind and mouth had provided. It was true, but it obviously just... more
    • I must have had one - Holland, Wed Dec 13 15:28
      • I think it got lost - Danny, Wed Dec 13 16:24
        “Ruben knows things about me that you don’t because he needed to.” What? Needed to? What did that - oh. No, that’s not what Danny meant. It, well, it might have been a part of it, but that wasn’t -... more
        • I’ll organize a search party - Holland, Wed Dec 13 21:25
          Danny looked agitated now. He was pacing and messing with his hair and avoiding eye contact and not finishing sentences. The mood in the practice room had gotten tenser in the span of a few seconds.... more
          • Just tell me what to do - Danny, Thu Dec 14 05:42
            It sound like Holland was going to argue that’s not what they had wanted, but then they stopped themselves. Danny was exhausted. He felt raw and restless and he just wanted to go back to his... more
            • First we need a map - Holland, Thu Dec 14 12:27
              “ It doesn’t matter, ” Danny agreed. Holland exhaled, unnoticed tension leaving their shoulders. They’d known that. They knew Danny; it had never felt like that mattered, not since first year before... more
              • I found your map... - Danny, Thu Dec 14 16:47
                Holland apologized. Danny looked at them, and blinked. Why was Holland apologizing? Okay, they’d said some stuff that had caused distress, but Danny hadn’t apologized for the original grievance of... more
                • This is not the map you’re looking for - Holland, Thu Dec 14 21:01
                  “ It matters because Ruben’s not the only one here who likes you like that. ” Holland stared blankly at Danny. For a long moment, they didn’t understand— who —and then the right neurons fired... more
                  • Oh. Whoops. - Danny, Thu Dec 14 22:10
                    He had no idea what to expect when those words had left his mouth. Danny almost wished he could take them back, but the truth remained it was absolutely impossible he would be able to keep something... more
                    • Maybe a cartographer would help - Holland, Fri Dec 15 03:26
                      For the first time in this entire conversation, Danny said exactly what Holland expected him to. “ Then nothing. ” That was the right answer, Holland thought, with something almost like relief.... more
                      • Do you know any? - Danny, Fri Dec 15 14:51
                        Holland didn’t sit with Danny, but they did move towards the door. For a stomach-lurching second, Danny thought they were just going to leave. He suspected both of them had considered vacating the... more
                        • Afraid not - Holland, Sat Dec 16 22:56
                          It sounded like Danny wasn’t going to get in the way if Holland wanted to flirt with Ruben again. Ultimately, that assurance was what Holland had wanted, although they could say with some certainty... more
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