Graduation Beyond Naiveté - Page 6

Graduation Beyond Naiveté

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closed Re: Graduation Beyond Naiveté

Post by Dom Weasley on Wed Jan 25, 2017 7:51 pm

Yeah, so Ant wasn't buying it.

Dom, as previously stated, didn't have a lot of experience with kids, but that somehow made her more natural with them. Her own playful nature her made her a fun companion for anyone under the age of twelve, and with no preconceived notion of how children should be treated, she instead treated them like people - a shocking tactic, really. Even the Ilvermorny mess had not convinced her that they were these vulnerable little strays that needed shielding. That shielding had made it very hard on those kids, having never had to protect themselves. No, honesty was key.

Even if Ant didn't feel comfortable being honest with her, Dom couldn't see a reason to lie to her.

She stared into the bowl as she mixed and sighed. "People are funny. They don't break the way a chair might, it's not just a one-time fix. It's more like... regrowing a dead plant. It's a little bit of water every day, and then sun and shade, and careful tending." She finally looked up from her task. "I'm going to try, but he's going to do some of the fixing himself too. We're going to work together on it. And he'll be okay."
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Post by Declan Arryn on Thu Jan 26, 2017 2:28 am

Dom sure sounded like she knew what she was talking about. But Ant wasn't convinced. In fact, she was determined that she knew better, and couldn't let it rest. She couldn't wait for something awful to happen to him or to Dom or even to herself. Even if it didn't necessarily matter what happened to her. Ant knew she couldn't stick around his flat forever. That was asking far too much, especially after all this.

"No," she shook her head fervently. "It doesn't work like that. Not for boys."

Declan would've balked at that, certainly. But he hadn't returned, so Ant was free to say whatever she pleased until Dom either reacted or gave up.

"My mum, she fixed herself. But my dad was really bad. And mum got... confused. She found somebody else and didn't help, and dad got worse. They can't do it themselves. You have to fix him. You," she pointed an accusatory finger. "He needs you. And he'll say he doesn't care but he does. And he won't be nice, but he is actually. What happened? Is somebody gone?"
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closed Re: Graduation Beyond Naiveté

Post by Dom Weasley on Thu Jan 26, 2017 4:32 am

Dom felt like she had settled for the matter. After all, she was the adult here, and she was the expert on all things Declan (keep dreaming, honey), and she knew a thing or two about broken people, having been surrounded by them growing up. It almost seemed like she had some sort of magnet for them, but she supposed that had more to do with the people she had chosen to associate with.

But apparently she was wrong about everything. Awesome. Great to know.

"Oh," she said, feeling like she could say nothing else. Ant continued on and Dom absent mindedly flicked her wand, letting magic do the rest of the work for her so she could focus on this surprising, new conundrum. She leaned over and rested her elbow on the counter, looking at the little girl curiously. "Huh."

She had a point.

Dom shook her head. "No one's gone, he just... he got hurt. And he never healed. And I wasn't there for him. But that's changing."

She paused. "What do you think I should do?"

Awesome. Taking advice from a child.
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Post by Declan Arryn on Sat Jan 28, 2017 3:35 am

At first, it seemed like Ant had stumped her. But the little girl's best guess was proven wrong, so that was confusing. Hm. She wasn't sure what else it could be. Dom explained, though, and that let Ant relax her shoulders.

"Well-- I don't know. I'm a kid."

Helpful, that.

"If you're going to fix him then that's good. But he looks like he needs help." Ant shrugged, realizing too late that she didn't have a whole lot of ideas despite her unfortunate level of experience Or, well, what she thought of as experience with such things.

And just as quickly as she had attempted to call Dom out, Ant turned back to the sink to collect the fruit so Dom could show her what came next. By the time Declan returned, leaning around the door to see if he would get kicked out again, Ant was subdued and tidying up the couch. His eyes flicked between the pair of them, but neither seemed angry with him this time, so he walked over to the tabled and leaned against it, crossing his arms.

"I sure miss that laughter from earlier. Everything alright?" He paused, then looked to Dom with a relatively reluctant expression. "Do I need to get in touch with someone.. about last night?"
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Post by Dom Weasley on Sat Jan 28, 2017 8:04 am

Ant... wasn't wrong.

Dom found herself slipping further and further into a reflective state. She couldn't agree more with Ant, Dom had to help because something was wrong. She murmured something of an affirmation, staring into the her pancake batter pensively, shaken by the little girl's insights. Such big thought from such a tiny frame. But Ant had stumbled onto something, something truthful.

And Dom hadn't missed that other bit. Mum and dad got messed up and couldn't get it fixed. Dom would remember that. But she certainly wouldn't push it.

Once Ant moved towards the living room, Dom frowned to herself and tossed in the blueberries, before pulling out the griddle to begin making the pancakes themselves. A bit impatient with all these thoughts tumbling through her head, she waved her wand, letting the pancakes take care of themselves - it's not like she needed the practice, she had breakfast foods down. She instead turned to the task of washing down the counters where batter had dripped and cleaning the whisks.

She heard Declan's voice and turned, sensing the hesitance in him. She smiled softly, releasing the kitchen implements and crossing to him, wiping her hands as she went. "We were just focused on breakfast," she said, a little white lie. She reached out and slipped her arms around his middle, resting her chin on his chest as she looked up at him, eyes softened with the admiration she had for the man before her. "We'll visit Teddy. If he says a word, I can kick his arse. I did it constantly growing up." She leaned up and, guessing they were safe with Ant in the living room, pressed her lips against him, feeling all of the promises and swears they had made just the night before.
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closed Re: Graduation Beyond Naiveté

Post by Declan Arryn on Mon Jan 30, 2017 1:47 am

Declan took Dom's word as truth, perhaps needing to believe that she was being honest with him. After all, he didn't expect her to do anything that would expressly harm him or Ant. So it was nicer to just take her words at face value and hold onto his faith despite having been rushed out of the room before.

His hand reached up to his hair, figuring he should have just dried it with some spell or other, but he hadn't bothered. And he was sufficiently distracted with thoughts of what would be coming up that day anyway, so he couldn't remember the right one regardless.

One thing Declan felt sure he would never get used to was the way Dom looked at him sometimes. Maybe she did it all the time and he just had never recognized it as the norm. He hadn't wanted to encourage his own mind, after all. But now he smiled freely, one hand winding around her back and the other threading through the ends of her hair.

"Somehow," he laughed a little, "I'm not surprised by that. Poor lad." Lad, indeed, considering Teddy was older.

Leaning forward to meet her halfway, Declan took the kiss as some sort of reassurance, even if that perhaps wasn't the intention on her part. It was sweet and gentle - somehow different from the sorts from before their talk the previous night. But when he pulled back, he sighed quietly and glanced towards the living room. "What are we going to do about Ant while we go? Merlin knows I shouldn't ask Henry to look after her. Too many questions. Plus, the last time he watched a group of kids, one broke their leg and it turned green. No bloody clue how, but still. Disaster waiting to happen."
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Post by Dom Weasley on Mon Jan 30, 2017 2:54 am

She liked this.

Arms wrapped around each other, soft smiles tugging at their lips, standing in the kitchen which had come to be a lot more than just a kitchen. She had first begun practicing simple recipes here. This is where she had met his parents. Where she had begun bonding with Ant. Where she had quietly admired him as he made her breakfast. Dom used to shy away from feeling... domestic. The word seemed to ring synonymously with trapped or boring. But nothing about being with Declan in his kitchen made her feel bored or trapped.

Everything was just all right. Even when they weren't.

They broke the kiss and she settled back onto her feet, still holding him, because she could. She followed his gaze to the living room, resting the side of her head on his chest, enjoying the thump of his heart and the hum of his words. She thought for a second and then said, "Why don't we ask her if she wants to go with us?" She looked up at him. "I mean, she was here yesterday. And if we need privacy, Teddy still has Lily's dog. She could play with it in the garden. And after we can all get lunch or something."

Yeah, domestic wasn't all the bad once you got used to it.
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Post by Declan Arryn on Mon Jan 30, 2017 6:19 pm

Declan wanted to ask if Anette had told Dom anything about the day before, once thoughts of yesterday came through. But he couldn't. He firmly believed that she would have mentioned anything worth worrying about, but instead she was saying that they should take Ant around with them for the day. Maybe Dom felt that it would warm the girl up to discussing things. Either way, he was a little surprised. Declan felt a little bad about it, but he had not pegged Dom as the type to like or get on easily with children. Not that he would have said anything different about himself, of course.

"Alright," he agreed. "You want to send him a note while I get things on the table?"

And so they got through breakfast, Ant agreed that she wanted to go - obviously far too curious about what was wrong with Declan - and they all made their way to Teddy's place. It wasn't quite what Dec had expected, given his assumption that Teddy was in some kind of physician role, but then again, pretty much anything seemed to fly in the wizarding world. So what did he know?

They landed outside Teddy's door, Ant clinging to Declan as though she had never apparated before besides the one time the day before. She hadn't seemed unwell, though, so he supposed she just didn't like magical travel at all. But he set her down and she wiggled her way in between them, uncertain as to who they might expect on the other side of the door.

Declan wished he had an answer for her, but he gave Dom's hand a squeeze regardless. He trusted her, even when he was so entirely conflicted about the whole thing.
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Post by Dom Weasley on Mon Jan 30, 2017 8:43 pm

Dom had gotten confirmation that Teddy was indeed at home, and had begun a note in which she explained they were to drop by, but had decided to jump into kitchen prep and make some fresh squeezed orange juice for their breakfast, glad for any excuse to work alongside the man she loved. The man she loved. It felt so strange that such a realization, an admission, now became apart of their reality so seamlessly. She felt like she had to write to her family and let them know she had proved herself capable of the emotion, or something, something to validate the occasion. But the quiet bumping of elbows and hums of pleasure that became the song and dance of Declan's kitchen was enough.

Breakfast was finished and the dishes were sent upon their way to clean themselves. Apparition was decided upon, and on Dom realized as they spun that the letter informing Teddy of their arrival remained on the table.

Oh, well, he liked surprises, didn't he?

When the door was thrown open, a sweater-clad Teddy was still holding what appeared to be a stack of essays, his glasses perched on the edge of his nose. He looked over the frames at the trio, completely at a loss for the scene he was seeing. Dom grinned widely and released the hands of the people next to her so she could pull her cousin-of-sorts into a hug.

"Teddy!" she said. She withdrew and slipped an arm around Declan and rested a hand on Anette's shoulder. "We had a few questions we thought you could help us with. This is Declan Arryn. He owns the Leaky, and he's my boyfriend." She shot Declan a look - man, oh man, she was in a mood for little surprises. "And this is our friend Anette. Declan, Anette, this is Teddy. You're going to let us in, aren't you, Teddy?"

And that was how the trio of them ended up at Teddy's kitchen table as he poured them tea, looking completely at a loss while Dom hummed happily. trying to diffuse the tension as she chatted on and on about the family. Once Teddy sat, Dom tilted her head. "Teddy, don't you still have Lily's dog?" He had barely answered when she looked at Ant. "Ant, what do you think? Would you rather sit it on boring catch-up talk, or you wanna play in the garden? It's up to you." Her eyes flicked towards Declan, hoping he would step in if he had a preference either way.
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closed Re: Graduation Beyond Naiveté

Post by Declan Arryn on Sat Feb 04, 2017 1:17 am

Declan's arm fell over Dom's shoulder instinctively when she stepped back to stand with them again, and although he was tempted to look her way when she called him that, he just gave her shoulder a squeeze and ran his thumb up and down across her upper arm. Ant looked a little too curious about this Teddy fellow - likely because she knew his job was to fix Declan to some extent. So Declan gave her a little nudge when it was time to head inside.

Declan, of course, had presumed that Teddy knew they were coming, even though he quickly realized that wasn't true. His expression when Teddy turned away was probably enough for Dom to recognize that he was surprised and worried they were intruding. It seemed not to matter in the end, though. And Teddy seemed nice enough that he tried to shove down the anxiety he felt about having to talk about this.

Anette glanced towards the backyard with interest, but she also glanced back to the people couple she had found herself wrapped up with. Declan would be reprimanded by Henry when the latter found out about Anette simply staying with them. That, of course, would come off as problematic when they didn't know anything about her family except that it was a bit of a mess right now. But she was waiting for some kind of decision to be made for her, it seemed.

Declan reached into his pocket and pulled out one of his gloves, transfiguring it into a fluffy scarf that he passed her way. "Go ahead. We don't mind."

She wrapped it around her neck hastily before jumping up and heading to the door. Anette sent them one more glance over her shoulder, but went outside anyway. So Declan told himself to relax into his chair, which he sort of did even though his hand reached for hers under the table.

"So... Dom thought maybe you would be able to help us with something."
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