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     There are Worse Things I Could Do (Ben)

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    Connor Bailey

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    Dragon Trainer In Training


    PostSubject: There are Worse Things I Could Do (Ben)   Tue May 08 2018, 23:26

    March, 2041 || Connor and Ben's Flat

    Connor considered himself to be a very calm and simple going individual, yet it seemed that for the past week the anger he felt within him did not just rush off. Throughout the week he had gone to the gym and let out his pent up anger: once in the morning before class, then once at night before hitting the flat only to fall asleep immediately. It was not ideal, but it shut down his brain. Because if he was honest, all his head was a mess.

    For one part he was relieved to have pushed Rhian away. To simply have her leave and just let him work out his own demons on his own and simply move on from the love he felt for her. Yet the other side of him, was wondering how he was holding up without them being together. But he had hurt her this time and that somehow felt oddly good and that itself disgusted him.

    This through process went in circles in his head, shifting from one to another until he simply tired himself out. Today was a different day: Saturday morning he found himself walking back to his flat. On Friday he went to a party and had spent time with his old Quidditch buddies, it was a good distracter.

    But as he door the opened to his flat a new visitor took him by surprise. A girl in his flat? Moreover a girl that he had not invited over? That was even odder. But he had to admit that she wore the t-shirt well, Ben;'s t-shirt that is. That was odd enough that is until he remembered that he had a girlrfriend: Tess Holmes. But the girl was too tall and too tan to be her. And as she reached to get a item high on the shelf he found himself immediately avoiding eye contact. It was improper.

    "Well good morning sunshine" she cooed

    Well, she was by no means new or Ben's girlfriend. But he had seen her before and she was never a good sign. If he was perfectly honest, her name was fitting, because wherever she landed she brought trouble her way. A lot of trouble especially for Ben.

    "Eris..what are you doing here?" He was not going to be overly polite to someone who did not deserve it.

    Because while he had no proof, he had a feeling that she was responsible for Ben's darkest and most disgusting moments.  And the way she smiled at his shortness at her, made him just know that nothing good came from this.

    "Oh I'm just making breakfast for my darling before I head to work"

    "You work?" the incredulous tone was by no means hidden and he made no effort to do so.

    "Ohh so fiesty. I do like blonds you know" the Cheshire grin angered him more than excited him. "But I'm taken darling, in fact I should get ready"

    A soft kiss was blown his way before she went to Ben's room and he in turn stopped upstairs making sure to make lots of noises. Today they were going to talk, because he was not going to stand for infidelity and possibly darker things in this household.


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    Benjamin Watson

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    PostSubject: Re: There are Worse Things I Could Do (Ben)   Tue May 08 2018, 23:51

    Ben had been laying in bed, caught half way between sleep and awake, for...well, he didn't know how long. When Eris had shown up late last night, per his request, Ben hadn't kicked her out after acquiring what he wanted. Connor was going to be gone through the evening, and the brunette had muttered something about having somewhere early to get to the next morning.

    Normally he didn't allow her to stay, in case she started getting the wrong idea. But as the potion made its way through his system, turning the world just the right amount of hazy, and his limbs a wonderful combination of weightless and leaden, Ben found he couldn't give a shit what she did. In fact, he was having difficulty recalling her even being there most of the time.

    But morning had come, and Eris had crawled out of the bed with all the grace of a jungle cat, long limbs and perfection. She'd closed the door behind her, but Ben heard voices through it and groaned softly. This was exactly what he'd been hoping to avoid.

    Questions. If Bailey was remotely reliable about one thing in life, it was the damned questions. Ben pulled a pillow over his face, wishing he could get away with staying in bed all day. But as Eris returned, saying a quick farewell with a too long kiss, he knew there was nothing for it.

    Pulling a robe off the back of the door, Ben padded into the kitchen in his t-shirt and pajama bottoms. He had no intention of leaving the flat today. He hoped to appease Connor, if only a small bit, so he started making tea for the pair.
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    Connor Bailey

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    PostSubject: Re: There are Worse Things I Could Do (Ben)   Sun May 13 2018, 01:52



    Connor nursed his coffee tightly in his hands once he had seen Eris leave to Ben's room. Somehow during that time his temper began to simmer. It was none of his business who Ben associated with at all. but the idea of him simply sleeping with another girl and had never mentioned the end of the relationship with the Holmes girl...well that was questionable.

    If his friend had committed that infidelity was he inclined to tell someone? Who would he tell? Certainly not Rhian, and if he and Rhian were no longer talking then he would not be able to get close to Tess without her hexing him.

    It was simply disappointing to see what his friend had become. And to see how bad his tastes were. Despite Eris' beauty, it was clear that there was not a single sincere bone in her body, especially as she blew a kiss goodbye before heading out.

    Moments later Ben came out acting as if nothing was odd. Sipping his coffee he forced himself to not jump at him immediately.

    "What was that?" was the first thing that popped out of his mouth.

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    Benjamin Watson

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    PostSubject: Re: There are Worse Things I Could Do (Ben)   Sun May 13 2018, 02:06

    Ben turned as Connor entered, noticing he already had coffee. A small frown tugged at his mouth, knowing his gesture would be for nothing now. Still, he continued with the tea, trying to act as normal as possible.

    Deflection. "Hmm?" His eyebrows rose as if he didn't quite know what the other man was talking about. Looking around, his eyes landed on the door to the downstairs that was slightly open. "Oh," he feigned understanding. "She dropped by last night and we got to talking. It was late so I offered her to sleep over." His tone light as if it wasn't out of the ordinary to do so.

    Searching the cupboards for something that resembled breakfast, he found some break and jam. A few flicks of his wand and they were on their way to toast for the pair of them, just the way Connor liked.

    With the tea ready, Ben tried for casual, drinking it too quickly and feeling regret at the burning liquid. His eyes scanned his roommate for information. Anything to distract him from possible signs of Ben's...altered state. Details leapt out at him in silly ways, and it took him a moment longer to piece them together than usual.

    "How was the workout?" He continued to sip his tea.
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    Connor Bailey

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    PostSubject: Re: There are Worse Things I Could Do (Ben)   Sun May 13 2018, 02:21



    Ben was always good at lying, too good. Even at a young age, it was eerie how easily he did it. But long were the times that his lying wouldn't go past Connor. Because while he wasn't the brightest, he knew when someone's habits changed.

    And Ben was a man of habit. He had a way of making people think he enjoyed chaos, but while he did, some things were routine. Like his penchant for making tea when he knew he did something bad. Or the way he used his pajamas as armor so as to seem nonchalant when that wasn't real.

    And facades did not work on Connor. So at his indifference, he simply took longer sips of his coffee only to scoff at the implausible story that his friend threw his way.

    "You are full of shit" he chuckled. "One, you and here never just talk. You can't even stand her! Two - you don't do that. You never do that" the frustrating was rising.

    Feigning sympathy he could not help but add. "What would your girlfriend think knowing that someone spent the night in your room, in your clothes and walking half naked through our flat?"


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    Benjamin Watson

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    PostSubject: Re: There are Worse Things I Could Do (Ben)   Sun May 13 2018, 03:10

    Toast floated through the air around them, settling on plates on the kitchen tables as knives set about spreading butter and jam on various pieces. Ben didn't make a move to sit down, not wanting any hindrance if he needed to make a quick escape from this conversation.

    While he expected some sort of conversational dance, as normal people were prone to perform, Connor went right to the point. Ben's head lowered as his lips formed a straight line of defense. He wasn't challenging the other man, but neither was he happy on being called out in such a way.

    His eyes focused on the blonde. Tension stiffened his posture as his gaze hardened. Of all the things he could bring up. Ben slowly set his teacup down on the counter top.

    "I highly doubt Holmes would trouble herself with my comings and goings, let alone anyone I choose to associate with."

    If his choice in companion last night was directly linked to his problems with the witch in question, well that was no one's business but his own. Ben could feel his mind churning, spiraling down holes of thought he'd rather not go. Luckily enough of the potion was in his system that his level of 'caring' was slightly dampened. He could go another hour or so before needing another escape, he figured.
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    Connor Bailey

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    PostSubject: Re: There are Worse Things I Could Do (Ben)   Sun May 13 2018, 03:20



    Connor's frowned deepened at Ben's nonchalance at everything. There was something off, he couldn't place it but he felt it. The indifference wasn't new, but the delivery and the intensity in his words were what made him really take a look at his friend.

    When he gently placed the cup down and stared at Connor intently, he felt a shiver down his back. He briefly wondered if Ben would have snapped immediately. Instead something incredible stupid came out of the genius:"I highly doubt Holmes would trouble herself with my comings and goings, let alone anyone I choose to associate with."

    "She's your girlfriend! That's so low of you to cheat on her. Hell, I don't even like the girl but break up with her if that's the case. Also, I care because Eris is not good for you. There's something about her, she has trouble all over her."

    Shaking his head he drank his coffee and pushed the tea away from him making it clear that no amount of toast or tea would fix anything or distract him.

    "I'm really disappointed in you. I thought you were becoming better at this, but you're a shitty boyfriend"

    All of that made no sense to him. Ben was not the type to do that and while he was not fond of people, he knew right or wrong. After all what is the point of the 'peace treaty' tea?

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    Benjamin Watson

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    PostSubject: Re: There are Worse Things I Could Do (Ben)   Tue May 15 2018, 22:03

    A normal human would probably read Ben's expression as predatory of some kind. In reality, the look in his eyes was more akin to how one would gaze at an offending spot on their new shoe. Appalled and close to murderous. Instead of interrupting Connor in his miniature fit, Ben allowed him this moment.

    When it was clear the other man had said his fill, Ben's eyes narrowed imperceptibly. "And I suppose you are the be-all end-all authority on relationships, then?" His voice was cold and calculating, the antithesis of the heat in his eyes. "That it is perfectly normal for a man who's pined over one woman since I've known him to now carry on with a revolving door of women?"

    If Ben was choosing not to comment on Eris, well then so be it.

    Head tilting slightly to the side, his hands clasped behind his back as Ben reached his full height. He may not be much taller than Connor, but in times like these, those few inches could feel like a foot.

    "Also, I'm not entirely certain I care what you think of me any more, Bailey. As you have made it perfectly clear where your priorities lie."

    While Ben may not be 'good' with 'people', he understood theatrics. Figuring that was a good line to exit on, he left the tea and breakfast where it was to take up residence in his usual chair, his fingers steepled in front of his mouth. The sudden movement had tossed his world a bit, with the residual potion in his system. His eyes closed in an effort to right it again.
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    Connor Bailey

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    PostSubject: Re: There are Worse Things I Could Do (Ben)   Tue May 15 2018, 22:17



    The low blow was not unexpected, but it did hurt more than he cared to admit. Despite what anyone thought, the door of revolving women was minimal, was a way of trying to cope and while it worked, the simple mention of Rhian stung more than he cared to admit. Glaring outrightly at his own ethics being questioned his own response was sharper than needed.

    "You fucker, you think you can give a low blow then run away? When will you stop being so immature." Turning over to face him he found himself continuing. "Say what you will about my guests, but I don't do infidelity. That's something that you're more inclined to do right? Forget the morals of everything to be interesting? Give me a break kid, a fit isn't going to avoid this conversation.

    Yet the petulance continued as Ben clearly made himself put out at the fact that he felt 'neglected'. Well boo, fucking hoo' Connor thought frustrated. He felt his cheeks heat up.

    "Also, I don't appreciate your tone. I've made it perfectly clear that you're my best friend. Especially with what I've dealt with you" the edge was clear. "And don't go on and avoid the Eris conversation. Sometimes I feel that she's to blame with-" he paused.

    The room grew quiet. They didn't talk about that. No it was still a sore spot even with the time that had passed.

    "I'm just disappointed in your actions"


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    Benjamin Watson

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    PostSubject: Re: There are Worse Things I Could Do (Ben)   Tue May 15 2018, 22:55

    Ben's eyes shot open at the expletive. While Connor was quick to emotion, whatever emotion it was, he rarely cursed. Not that it was unheard of, but it was usually a good indicator for how far Ben had pushed him. And yes, it was usually because of Ben.

    Guests. That was humorous. "I suppose your 'guests' are more interesting than the Kael girl. Now that she's no longer this perfect vision you've built up, it's so easy to look elsewhere."

    In truth, Ben didn't know why he was all of a sudden focused on Connor's treatment of the witch. But the events of Christmas had seemed to be the catalyst to everything. While he hadn't been fond of Claire to begin with, she'd become increasingly annoying after that, and the others were nothing if not boring.

    The rest of Connor's words had Ben's teeth set on edge. "Kid," her murmured in echo, barely above a whisper. A scowl took over his features. "I know too well how you think of me. A child to be tended to when he misbehaves. A....chore," he spit out. Tess's words swam through his mind. "And I assume I'm no longer allowed to have acquaintances outside of our 'friendship'? Unless they're approved by you, of course."

    As suffocating as his family estate had been, Ben felt even more so now. Bitter, he had to wonder if he'd traded one prison for another. A small part of his brain knew he was blowing this out of proportion. That he was not in his right mind at the moment. And for the very reason that Connor was stopping short of saying. If he only knew.
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    Connor Bailey

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    PostSubject: Re: There are Worse Things I Could Do (Ben)   Tue May 15 2018, 23:03



    Connor looked incredulously as Ben himself sprouted off his own argument except...except this was not Ben. This was not Ben at all. Yes they argued, often and over little things. But never did they argue over feelings and ethics in their own lives. This had escalated the moment that Ben had gone for the jugular and while it hurt, it made him think that it had been a while since he lashed out.

    There was something that stuck out. For all this time that had passed, it seems Ben still was sore about his birthday. "Seriously? Your birthday was three months ago! I've been trying to make it up since, and hell you did nothing for mine! But it's okay because we are bigger than petty things. Hell ever since that night I've been trying to make it up to you only for you to.."

    Something clicked.

    "How long have you been spending time with Eris? I care about her being around because last time you were so out of it and you barely made sense. Ben you barely passed your first year" His voice ended a bit less angry than he intended.


    "You know for someone so smart, you have shit ways of dealing with your emotions. I do care about who you spend your time with. Not because I can be possessive..no that's definitely you. Rather I know how easily you can try to get the easy way out. Some high to.." he choked up a bit. "I don't want to have you fall into that" his voice firmed up after that. "I don't approve of her. Hell you can have a million girlfriends for all I care, just don't hurt her and don't hang around Eris"


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    Benjamin Watson

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    PostSubject: Re: There are Worse Things I Could Do (Ben)   Wed May 16 2018, 22:26

    Right hand moving up to rub at his temple, Ben had absolutely no patience to listen to this. Yes, he was still resentful at being left alone on his birthday. Not because he needed the whole world to acknowledge him, like some people he'd observed over the years. But because what once was an insignificant day had come to mean...well, a great deal to him. But since this January, he'd begun to wonder if Connor simply placated him. Merlin knew why.

    Something in his brain went on red alert at the change in Connor's tone. Unfortunately, it was only after the man started down his rabbit hole of assumptions. Okay, so they're not completely unfounded. But it didn't mean Ben had to lay all his cards on the table. As it was, Eris had taken all evidence with her when she'd left. He'd made sure of that.

    I have it under control this time, Ben confirmed to himself for the thousandth time in the last few weeks. Last time inquisitive mind was keen to push the envelope as far as it could go. And boy did he ever! Now he knew how far gone he could get, and that was no longer the goal. The point of this now was to forget, if only for a little while.

    And Connor was messing that up. His attention had wandered around the sitting room as Connor droned on, but once he was finished, Ben gave him a steady gaze. "Do I look out of it to you?" A quick systems check told him his transport was cooperating on all fronts.

    "Besides," he shifted uncomfortably in his chair. Maybe if he read Connor in slightly the man would get off his back. "I doubt Holmes would care about what I do because it was all a lie." A hint of bitterness came out in his voice. "A ruse to get our families off our back for the time. But it fell apart, as I should have known it would." The last bit was almost too soft to be heard, his brow furrowing in annoyance at the idea of sharing feelings.
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    Connor Bailey

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    PostSubject: Re: There are Worse Things I Could Do (Ben)   Sun Jun 03 2018, 20:42


    "Do I look out of it to you?"

    At first glance, no, he did not look "out of it", but what he did look was agitated. He was never so out of touch with his actions, and never were his emotions so easily seen. Connor remembered clearly how he had caught his friend crying because of something miniscule. He had seen all the emotions under those things that Ben inhaled.

    "You know I'm not going to answer that. I think your shaky hands say more than anything I could say."

    It was disappointing to see, but he would not make a big deal about it. He knew from the previous round that it did no good for him to be that offended over everything. Rather than avoid an argument he tried to reign in his anger.

    But Ben admitting that his whole relationship was a sham was surprising to say the least. One on hand, it seemed to make sense, at least in the logical aspect of it all; he was not one to open up to just anyone. Yet the bitter tone of his comment was not ignored, it seemed that whatever had been played out, clearly had affected him.

    "I see...that makes sense considering the last time she and I talked. I don't care if it's not real, I care that you don't permanently harm yourself with those...concoctions I know Eris threw your way. Go shower, take a calming draught...just go back to being you. I can't talk to you when you're like this."

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    Benjamin Watson

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    PostSubject: Re: There are Worse Things I Could Do (Ben)   Sun Jun 03 2018, 21:24

    Ben had the sense of mind to look contrite. Well...as contrite as his 6'1" frame would allow him to. If Connor was able to suss out the potions effects on him, almost out of his system even, then the signs must be extremely obvious. It wasn't like his flatmate was the sharpest tool in the shed.

    His hands closed into fists as Connor continued. It was good, Ben supposed, that Connor wasn't going to ask more about Holmes. He was in absolutely no mood to discuss it further. Especially sober, as it appeared he was going to have to be.

    Standing, he nodded barely, moving towards the bathroom. Before exiting the living area entirely, he stopped and turned his head enough to be heard over his should. "I will make it known that Eris is not welcome." He would not promise more than he could.

    The shower did help him clear his head the rest of the way. It also gave him time to reassess. If Connor was paying attention now, Ben guessed he'd have to be more careful. This time was nowhere close to the last, where he was dependent on the drugs to get through the day. No, he could stop when he wanted, and maybe now was a good time to do so. But as he moved to his room to get dressed, he caught site of the shirt he'd worn that night, tucked into the back of his closet. Even something as small as that caused a slight twinge in his chest that he was want to examine.

    If he could stop when he wanted, than he could decide to continue as well. He'd finagled the details of the potion out of Eris not too long ago anyway. Her presence was no longer required.

    With clean clothes and a sober attitude, he returned to the kitchen, spelling the remains of the uneaten breakfast away. Looking to change the subject, he looked over at Connor. "Do you honestly plan to lose your friendship with Kael?" It was blunt, but that was his way.
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    Connor Bailey

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    PostSubject: Re: There are Worse Things I Could Do (Ben)   Sun Jun 03 2018, 22:42



    Just the mention that Eris was not welcomed relieved Connor. It was hard enough to see Ben like this, let alone to speak with him in any way. He was annoyed that he even had allowed himself to just lose control as he had.

    So as Ben went off to shower, he in turn began to clean up. Wiping down the table, he moved around muttering charms to remove event the scent of the serpent that returned. He was putting the items into their fridge when he heard his question:

    "Do you honestly plan to lose your friendship with Kael?"

    That had made him jump and hit himself on his head in surprise. Turning around he glared at Ben, wondering what right he had to simply dared to ask the question.

    "Since when do you care about that?"

    He found himself being defensive. The tables had definitely turned and he was not pleased. Closing the fridge he found himself taking a beer and beginning to drink it. If he was going to even fathom having this he figured he might as well be a bit buzzed.

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    Benjamin Watson

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    PostSubject: Re: There are Worse Things I Could Do (Ben)   Sun Jun 03 2018, 23:28

    Connor hitting his head on the refrigerator would have been comical to some. But Ben only felt glad, happy to shift the unwanted scrutiny to his flatmate after being the center of attention earlier. It wasn't often that they picked each other apart like this, for good reason. Both men hated it.

    He watched as Connor's proverbial hackles rose at the question. His drinking did not go unnoticed, and if Ben was honest, he found it a bit hypocritical. It seemed completely acceptable for the blond to drink his way out of problems, but it wasn't okay for Ben to indulge in a different form of substance indulgence.

    Past experiences aside.

    Leaning his back against the far wall, he eyed Connor from a safe distance. His voice was nonchalant. "You've been a right prat since December. I'm simply inquiring as to when this phase is going to end, or if you've developed permanent emotional changes that I need to acclimate to."

    In truth, he cared little for the girl. It was more about Connor and what it was doing to their dynamic.
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    Connor Bailey

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    PostSubject: Re: There are Worse Things I Could Do (Ben)   Sun Jun 03 2018, 23:38



    Connor glared as he heard Ben's commentary. Yes it was true but at the same time, he had no need for the amazingly blunt statement. Yes, he hadn't been himself since December, but if he was perfectly honest, he had not been as angry with Rhian as more disappointed.

    He was disappointed in her actions and at the same time himself. He was angry he waited so long and he hadn't jumped at the chance to just be with her when she opened her heart to him. But he knew that the chance was lost, and that even if he had taken it, it wouldn't have been wise.

    "I haven't been a prat, you've been the prat. And as for Rhian, I don't know. I just want to cool down, and not have her just push for things to be fixed right at that second." he shrugged."I admit I got mad at her too and snapped at her...and at your fake girlfriend but...but I think I just need time for everything"

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    Benjamin Watson

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    PostSubject: Re: There are Worse Things I Could Do (Ben)   Sun Jun 03 2018, 23:53

    Ben took the angry look in stride. He could read the other man like an open book, and it was clear Connor was winding down from his initial reaction. Thank Merlin, Ben thought, figuring it was okay to move them into the sitting room.

    He settled down in his chair again, infinitely more relaxed than before. Mouth twitching into a smirk at Connor's taunt, Ben knew they were back on safe ground. No matter how old they got, they were still the first years from Potions underneath it all.

    Nodding in response, he picked up a text book and flipped to the section he'd been reading yesterday, sensing an end to their talk. From what he'd gathered of the girl over the years, she could be stubbornly aggressive with the need to 'feel'. He didn't understand it then, and definitely not now.

    Ignoring the comment about Holmes, he responded. "You've every right to that. But don't take too long. That was your problem the first time." With that, he turned his attention to the various uses of Nettles and their properties.
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