Modesty had taken to wandering the halls a whole lot. Probably not the SAFEST past time to take up, but she wasn't exactly concerned. At least, at the moment. Say some sort of creepy stalker person came out of the shadows, then she supposed she would care a whole damn lot, but now- she was okay, she supposed. She hadn't seen Will in a few days which was so ODD- considering she spent most of her time when she wasn't with him, with Rabastan (WHEN HE WASN'T WITH EVAN, YES.) in the Slytherin commons. Where it would be rather hard to miss her considering also that he LIVED THERE AND ALL.
Walking, walking, walking. She was always walking- metaphorically or not, she guessed, which didn't make much sense, but neither did much else, really. If she wanted to walk metaphorically, then she damn well would. Walking metaphorically would be like- always on the move. Or always thinking. She didn't particularly like thinking. She liked that she had the ability to think and all, but thinking brought up all of these THINGS that she didn't want to address just yet and all of the things that she just wanted to file away and leave them be because they weren't anything that would need to be brought up unless the THINKING occurred, which was a lot of what was happening, especially lately.
So, all of this thinking lead her out to the lake, by the tree. Er- THE tree, just to clarify.
Since she was most obviously SHRINKING, she decided not to try and attempt to get up into the tree for lack of will in breaking most of her limbs. Modesty just decided to sit at the base of the tree for a while and brood. Think some more, and bring up all of those little issues that she had filed away until now.
Such as the blatant avoiding.
She didn't know what she did, really. She had just kind of BEEN. Been being and all that. And suddenly, Will had just kind of disappeared. Disappeared in general. POOF.
A leaf fell on her head from a disturbance in the tree and she looked up;
Hey look. A Will.
Moving to sit more comfortable, there was some rustling in the tree and suddenly someone was peering up at him and he wasn't all that private and undisturbed anymore.
"Oh, hello. It's you. Didn't know you'd be out here, too. Nice night, isn't it?"
OH DEAR GOD that was so AWKWARD. Could he just... disappear? Turn into a mouse and scuttle away?
ARGH he was dreading this. This... this confrontation... thing. He hated it. GRR why couldn't things have just remained SIMPLE. BUT NO, Regulus and Will's goddamn THOUGHTS had to interject and tell him that NO, the status quo was NOT perfectly all right; get off your ass and DO SOMETHING ABOUT IT, but as soon as he tried, he failed. And now he was in this in-between place that he hated so much. Hrmph.
"Hiya. Me. Yeah. Nice night," she said, and hated it. It was so TENSE. She could barely BREATHE. She wanted to know what she...did. She hadn't done anything particularly stupid, to her knowledge anyway, and didn't really get why she was being avoided in the first place. Usually, she did something to get the silent treatment. As usually fault goes.
"You've been rather scarce lately. Nice to see you, and all," Modesty said, trying to...address? FURTHER THE ANGER AT THIS MYSTERIOUS THING?
This was STUPID and Will HATED himself for it. Why was he acting like such a BABY.
"Right, right. Been... busy, is all." BUSY SNOGGING BOYS. WHAT THE HELL, WILL? "I, er. Yeah. Busy. Thoughts... everywhere. Meh."
He had a lump in his throat and he knew it. She knew it. She knew how this was making him feel, didn't she? She had to know. SHE ALWAYS KNEW. It was like... argh.
Beating his head steadily against the branch behind him, Will let his eyes flutter closed, trying to imagine... that he wasn't there and that this situation was so not happening right now.
"Your thoughts are ALWAYS everywhere, you know," she said, smiling awkwardly. AWKWARD AWKWARD AWKWARD AND SHE DIDN'T EVEN KNOW WHY. She was NEVER AWKWARD. Awkward was something that she liked to think out of her vocabulary. The fuck- especially with Will.
...Well, that was somewhat destroyed already, what with the naked and the STUFF and all.
"Don't do that. I can hear it. You're going to get brain damage, and then I'll have to drag you to the Hospital Wing and it'll be horrid trouble."
"I hate myself," Will said suddenly, finally able to look at her straight in the eyes now that that statement was out at least. "Why don't you hate me, Modesty, hmm? You should."
Will had never been afraid of heights. Just the stains on his clothes that could be caused by such a fall.
"Maybe I could just launch myself down so I can break something again so I can tumble into the lake and I can get a part of Rabastan's soul again because I don't have one right now. Even just a part of one would be nice, you know," Will sighed, letting his eyes close. "I don't deserve one. Hell, I don't even deserve---fuck." Grimacing at himself, he punched the tree trunk to his right with all the force and anger built up in his arm right now.
His knuckles were bleeding.
Hate? What? Modesty felt out of the loop. She hadn't even known that Will HAD a loop to be out of! "Why should I hate you, then?" Modesty asked, trying to...gain information that wasn't in the form of odd pieces of information and self-hate.
Was he suicidal or something? DID SHE MAKE HIM SUICIDAL NOW? BREAKING BONES? LAKES? DROWNING? So confused. CONFUSED. AND DISTRAUGHT NOW.
"No, you're wrong. You do have a soul because if you didn't you wouldn't be sad or whatever you are right now, and you wouldn't be having thoughts of breaking your bones which you shouldn't have because its BAD and injuries are NOT GOOD, and if you break your bones intentionally, I will kill you."
"Because," Will grumbled, hating himself for not being honest with her and instead being so goddamn CRYPTIC.
"You're rambling," Will said, feeling somber and gloomy and right out of a drama. "And you can go ahead."
When she didn't do anything, he picked himself up by the help of one of the main trunks, getting up to climb up one of the sturdier ones before launching himself off and into the lake, resurfacing moments after the impact, shaking his head to get the water out of his face. "I don't deserve you," he bellowed up to the tree, going under the water again.
"HOLY SHIT," she screamed, VERY startled by his sudden splash into the lake. He...just...willingly...ruined...his...CLOTHES.
...Something was disturbingly wrong.
"What are you DOING?! You're going to die of some sort of hypothermia and WILL!"
Modesty stood up quickly, tripping slightly over her shoes to run over to the edge of the lake. He had lost his mind- CLEARLY. SHE WAS NEVER SENSIBLE! THIS WAS PRACTICALLY SACRILIGE. Some balance of the universe had shifted and she DIDN'T KNOW WHAT THE HELL WAS GOING ON.
"Can you TELL ME WHAT THE HELL IS GOING ON PLEASE?"
"SO? IT WOULDN'T MAKE A BLOODY DIFFERENCE!" he shouted back before going under again and resurfacing when he was out of air.
"NO! NO I CAN'T!" Jumping up, he came down into the water with even more force than before. It felt oddly... cleansing. Refreshing, with every splash he made in the water.
When he came back up, he felt strange and disoriented; not sure what to do now. He could keep doing the same thing over again, but...
Noticing the little protrusion of rock from the lakeside wall that was just a little bit under water... the one where they had almost kissed... he swam over to it and sat down, leaning his head against the wall and letting his eyes close again, his clothed drenched as little drops began to fall onto his face.
Pulling off his shirt, he threw it behind him onto the damp grass, closely followed by his shoe, then his other shoe, a sock...
"Well, you might as well come inside. You'll be wet anyway. Then we can talk if you want."
Modesty was really confused. A little frightened, a little our of her head, but mostly confused. He wouldn't tell her ANYTHING, he was INSISTING on trying to DROWN HIMSELF or contract a deadly COLD, or URGING HER TO KILL HIM.
She pushed a hand through her hair, pulling off her shoes and diving into the water after a hastily cast warming charm. He could drown and contract hypothermia if he liked, but she wasn't going to.
She swam over to that spot; the spot where Rabastan's soul was handed over among other things.
"Well, talk then. Because I don't even know what this is about," Modesty said. By now, she wasn't exactly in the best of moods.
"I am," there went the other sock, "an ass," oh, look, a pair of pants, "of epic proportions," his undershirt, "who doesn't deserve this, or you, or anything, because I've made a huge mistake," and underwear, and suddenly he wasn't wearing anything anymore, "and I don't see why you would even want to still see my face again after you found out what I've done."
Will paused, staring at the murky water. "And I've run out of clothes now."
"That's not TALKING, you know. That is ALLUDING and STRIPPING," she said, talking a step back and crossing her arms. Notthinkingnotthinkingnotthinking. ANGER! YEAH!
"If its so bad then you should tell me so I can hate you sooner then, yeah?"
He was NAKED and she was ANNOYED because he was being so ANNOYING.
"Yes, you have and now you should TALK before you DIE of DISEASE."
"Well, I'm not stripping anymore, if that helps at all," he muttered under his breath. He really didn't feel cold. He felt overheated and like he was completely burning up. The water proved to be just mildly helping.
Maybe he should just--
Why was this so bloody hard? It shouldn't be this difficult. ARGH.
"You have to remember... I'm me, you know... sexual... frustrations... god, I don't know. It's not even like it's my fault... except it is. It's just... I don't even know what has come into him, but Regulus... Regulus seems to really, really like me, if you know what I mean... and me, in my weakened state... I'm like Eve and the Apple and the Snake and the Tree, except I'm not a woman and this wasn't paradise to start with." Bringing his knees up to his face, he buried his face in his hands and just sat there, praying for her to just understand what he'd just said, because I kissed Regulus, or even Regulus kissed me seemed too ludicrous to even verbalize.
And on top of that, Will didn't even usually talk all that much to start with.
"Only because you CAN'T," she grumbled, looking down into the murky waters, certain that her feet were going to get eaten by some lake monster brethren to the giant squid.
"Well he's only a bit obsessed with you, and I thought you knew so I never SAID anything because he and Avery have been getting along so well and they are cute and in anything- Your metaphors aren't informing at all, so you've got to tell me what you've done so I can be angry right properly."
Will made a grunting sort of noise, before shaking his head, still buried in his hand.
"I kissed Regulus. He kissed me. I, er. I kissed someone else. I kissed a boy. I'm nuts. I'm insane. Not to mention that I'm the worst person in the world, and I want to say something so childish... I want to say that he started it, but, dammit, I could have moved."
The words hit her like some sort of boulder. She stumbled backwards, making a big splash in the water and her brain being clouded over with something in the family of irate. She narrowed her eyes and sank into the water.
"I take it back. I should hate you."
"Oh, god, don't drown," Will said, almost a little too unenthusiastically, barely moving, letting his head fall back in frustration. He should have expected this.
Closing his eyes, he shook his head. Will Nott did NOT cry. NO. NONONONO. "Don't say that. It makes it worse. I... god."
WILL NOTT DID NOT CRY. IT WAS HIS NAMESAKE. NONONO. NOT CRYING, NO. NO, NO, NO.
"OF COURSE IT MAKES IT WORSE," she yelled, clamoring up the bank of the lake can sitting, bringing her knees up to her chest and putting her head in her hands, letting out a cry of frustration. Frustration at being ignored, frustration at being lied to, frustration at being cheated on.
And then he was CRYING and why did HE deserve to get to cry? Dammit- her compassion had ran OUT.
And for ONCE, she wasn't the one in the wrong.
"It makes it worse that you did it in the first place and even more than that- you reasoning being I wouldn't give? Dammit Will! i KNOW I'M NOT IN THE WRONG THIS TIME!"
Okay, so Will could deal with an upset Modesty. But one like this? Gah. Will did still have a proud bone in his body, and, dammit... if she was going to show no compassion at all... jjkldfjalfa
Grittin his teeth, Will clenched his eyes shut.
"DAMMIT, MODESTY, MAYBE I AM THE ONE WHO DID SOMETHING WRONG, BUT IT TAKES TWO TO CAUSE SOMETHING LIKE THIS. IT'S NOT MY FAULT ENTIRELY, THANKS. JUST BECAUSE YOU DON'T SEEM TO HAVE IT IN YOU TO TOUCH ME, OR--"
Oh GOD this was NOT turning into this. OH NO.
"OH SO THAT'S HOW IT IS?" Modesty stood, her fists shaking by her sides and one hand fighting to put one of her shoes on in a rush. "Its always my fault, somehow, isn't it? Modesty is too naieve, Modesty is too scared, Modesty is too loud- too abrasive," she ranted, pacing in a small circle, retrieving her other shoe in the process.
"Maybe I'm just not cut out for THIS," she said fiercely, creating a general vicinity with her hand gesture, and despite her words, her tone was anything but drained.
"IF THAT'S HOW YOU WANT TO PUT," Will shouted back, turning to look at her ranting and raving as she ran about the lawn.
"WELL MAYBE YOU SHOULD HAVE THOUGHT OF THAT BEFORE YOU MADE ME FALL IN LOVE WITH YOU," Will screamed, his eyes suddenly gone wide, his face going ashen.
...he hadn't just said that. Oh no.
"What?" Modesty squeaked, stopped in her tracks and shoe halfway on her foot. Her arms dropped, and she just stood. Looking over the edge of the bank at Will's head in astonishment. And oh, it wasn't one of those makeshift squeaks, either. It was the high-pitched sound that most people should have thought impossible from Modesty's rather rugged tone of voice.
She blinked twice at the water in fast succession, trying to wrap her mind around that one second. That one word. Now she was having the opposite problem. Everything was acute in her mind. The rustling of the leaves in the tree was amazingly apparent; the rushing of the tide, the rapid breaths that she herself was taking.
"What?" she said again, more steadily this time.
That should have been expected.
"I. Er. I didn't.. say that. I. Um. Never said that. Never happened," he started avidly shaking his head at the sheer thought. "No, no. Not at all. Never. I, er. Imagination. Err."
This was ridiculous. "You didn't heart me say that. I. Huh. Um. Right."
Will needed to QUIT BABBLING. fkldjflaf
Modesty shook her head rapidly, "No, I heard you!"
Things were still amazingly sharp and her hands were still shaking. This was weird. And it always happened like this and she NEVER EVER had a chance to get properly mad at him because he always did things like THIS.
"You NEVER let me get properly mad at you," she pouted, flopping down on the grass.
"Wait a minute, that's not my fault! Especially when I NEVER SAID ANYTHING," he flailed, his eyes wide and desperate, arms flailing, unsure of why he was still trying to prove a moo point. Or pound a dead orchid. Or... something like that.
A minute or two passed by with Will leaning his head on the edge of the grass, looking over at her. The water seemed to be cooling down. He heard himself take every breath. "Have you died?" he said very slowly after a bit when she didn't move or say anything.
"Well obviously you said SOMETHING- A VERY BIG SOMETHING- or else you probably would have a spiked heel embedded into your skull right now," she said, rolling her eyes and chastising herself for not eing angrier. Or more forceful. SOMETHING.
"Not dead yet," she grumbled.
She was silent for a few more minutes before she had to ask. PLAGUING HER MIND AS IF IT WERE A MOTH. OR MEDIEVAL VIRUS.
"Did you mean it? And you know what."
Will made a pained sort of noise. Was that... a good mistake? God, this was such a mess.
"You say that as if it's a bad thing," he murmured, feeling a little like a drowned puppy.
Will stopped and he felt the world stop with him, staring at the grass, a moment caught in perfect harmony. Perfect stillness.
"Yes," he said very quietly, very slowly after a bit, and he felt the moment pass as he let himself fall backwards into the water, his back on the protruding stone ledge, the water washing up over his face occasionally, but usually just reaching his ears. Closing his eyes, Will let his thoughts wash away with him.
"Well, usually, severe injuries to the skull ARE seen as bad things. What with the blood and the whole, dying thing and stuff," she said, mostly to herself, and very lamely.
She really wanted to get mad at him- HORRIBLE, YES, SHE KNEW- but obviously he was going to make it impossible. Again. AS ALWAYS. One day, she vowed, right there in the grass by the Great Lake (OH YES, ONE DAY), she would be able to get mad at him. Really.
"Are you sure? Really? I'm really annoying, you know. Emotional wreck, all the time- this one bloke, always pushing my buttons and such. Will Nott- horrible guy," she said, smiling slightly towards where he was sitting.
Will muttered something under his breath, staring at the sky up above.
It was useless. Completely pointless. He didn't move from his position, staring up at the darkness, a few flecks of light sprinkled here and there, the water slowly moving his head, swooshing and swishing it every which way with the current.
He didn't try to stop it. He allowed it to carry him wherever it wanted him to go.
That was the crux of the matter, wasn't it?
He didn't move or look at her when he spoke again, "You have bewitched me mind, body, and soul, Modesty. How can you possibly expect me to consider you annoying. I love--I love--I love you," he finally managed to get out, closing his eyes as he said it, "and if you... oh, god, I can't say it."
Deep breaths. "Look, you really don't have much of a choice. I really hope you feel the same, or, at any rate, could, because I don't know if at this point, much in my life would really matter if you wouldn't."
Modesty walked over to the edge of the band and let her feet hang over the edge, her feet skimming the water slightly. She shook her head slightly, smiling a little. "I think I've loved you for a long time," she said gently, staring at the horizon steadfastly.
She glanced at him out of the corner of her eye.
"I think I've loved you for a long time."
Will's mind buzzed with a million ideas. A million questions.
You can't be serious. How long? I feel like even more of an arse now. Now, are we talking love as in... the sort of love you feel for a very good friend, or, potentially a brother, or the fact that you've been IN love with me, because there is a definite difference you know. Why didn't you tell me? You know that makes you a bigger idiot than me, right? I wonder why I'm so commitmentphobic.
But... he said none of those. He just sat up, stared at the water, and nodded, solemnly, slowly. "I don't know what I did to deserve that," he said very slowly, the overabundance of thought making him nearly speechless.
"Right now, I'm not really sure either," Residual anger slighted her voice, her hair falling forward to cover her face. She squinted into the lake, drops of water from her hair making the surface ripple.
"So. Now what?" she asked.
Legitimate question, really. A loaded question, but legitimate nonetheless. She wasn't being a coward by not addressing anything. Not REALLY. She had said SOMETHING.
"Hrm." Will was shaking. The cold was finally getting to him. Getting up out of the water, he picked up his clothes - internally mourning for every designer he could possibly think of in his mind, realizing, however, that more pressing matters were at issue here - and took out his wand, drying and cleaning them, before dressing himself again.
"I don't know. It's out of my hands from here on out. It's up to you. All I can say is that I love you and I miss you and that I'm sorry, and, that, although you don't want to hear it, it's really not my fault. This is the part where you make your decision about... whatever. I'll be in my room, writing poetry and listening to love songs and contemplating life and its cruelty in the meantime." He didn't think she'd let him kiss her, so he leaned down to kiss the top of her head as he walked by, taking a deep breath as he looked up at the castle, dreading the walk back.