October 22, 2020, 04:05:46 AM

Author Topic:  never have nothing to say [mr. salinger]  (Read 175 times)

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Offline Adam Nguyen

never have nothing to say [mr. salinger]
« on: August 25, 2020, 09:41:02 PM »
Thursdays were so tantalizingly close to Fridays that they put Adam in the pissiest of his moods. Today he and Jake were in a tiff -- earlier Adam had said he didn’t like Jake’s girlfriend, and Jake had asked what was wrong with her, and Adam had said he didn’t give a damn about her, he just didn’t see why she needed to always be around, and Jake had said that was what girlfriends and boyfriends did, fuckass, and things had gone sour from there. Jake and Madison were being outright sickening all day, probably specifically because they thought it would annoy Adam, and though Adam had been sending beseeching looks at his other roommates all day, Joaquim and Hudson hadn’t gotten the guts to do anything more than look sympathetic.

Madison was taking over their group, was the problem: Adam wasn’t even all that close to his roommates but it felt like a grave injustice that Madison of all people had taken his spot at the table in Defense Against the Dark Arts, while Adam got shunted into a group of Thunderbirds, with only Joaquim and Hudson and their useless helpless shrugs for comfort.

Adam had never liked Jake that much -- Jake had too high an opinion of himself, and not a high enough opinion of personal space -- but he liked Jake much less with a girlfriend. Madison seemed to inspire Jake to constantly show off how hilarious he could be, and Jake was funniest when he was poking fun at people. Joaquim and Adam had already discussed how infuriating this was; Adam was determined to bring it up to Jake, one way or another. He’d realised halfway through this argument that this was the wrong way -- Jake went straight into this is why you don’t have a girlfriend territory, and Adam had found himself needing to pretend that his inability to get a girlfriend was a choice, and Jake had seen straight through that and blamed it on Adam’s fat face, Asian eyes, bacne and personality, and -- again -- things had gone sour from there.

Fortunately, Adam had gotten in a few good shots before the others had pulled them apart and fortunately, Jake had gotten in none. Unfortunately, a professor had seen it happen. Now, with Jake rubbing his jaw and Adam fixing his dishevelled uniform and Hudson and Joaquim in uncomfortable ready-to-act stances, Adam thought the four of them looked like the guiltiest idiots Ilvermorny had ever seen, clustering and avoiding each other’s gazes. Salinger approached; all four of them mumbled like fools, afternoon, sir or sorry or awkward coughing or, in Adam’s case, a glum “Shit.”

It probably wouldn’t work to throw Jake under the bus -- Ilvermorny frowned on bullying but Adam imagined that assault trumped insult in bullying severity -- so he just straightened his posture and waited for Salinger to pass judgment.

@Gideon Salinger

my heart says yes but my mom says no

Offline Gideon Salinger

Re: never have nothing to say [mr. salinger]
« Reply #1 on: August 30, 2020, 02:45:08 PM »
The new school year had only just started but Gideon could already now tell that it was quite different from all the years before. Dottie was teaching at Ilvermorny now too and that changed Gideon's whole world. He tried to avoid her but it was hard not to look at his former girlfriend when he saw her in the corridors or at meals. In fact, the professor felt a little like a school boy again. He found himself choosing different corridors just to avoid running into Dottie. He wasn't even sure why he avoided her but he really didn't want to talk to her, not yet anyway.

The fact that he had seen Dottie from afar and had chosen to turn around and just go into a different direction meant that he ran right into a fight. The professor was strangely happy about this unexpected distraction. He approached the boys, further encouraged to step in because they were from his own house.

He raised his eyebrows when the students, all in their own way, acknowledged his presence. “What's going on here?” he asked instead of a greeting, his voice casual and friendly. “Don't you guys have any homework to do? Your professors seem to be quite soft.” Since he had not really witnessed the entire scene, the Alchemy professor was quite aware that he was missing some facts. He could hardly point out an actual culprit here. While he had just seen that Adam had got in a few shots before two of his house mates had stopped him, he doubted that the boy would just lash out without a proper reason. He wanted to find out more but didn't want to deal with all boys at once. Neither did he intend to make Adam feel like he was blaming him.

“Mr Nguyen, I could really do with your help,” he, therefore, said, looking at Adam with the tiniest hint of a smile. “I have been to a Vietnamese restaurant during the summer holidays and the menu was so badly translated into English that I really didn't know what I was ordering. If you can spare a moment to join me in my office you could enlighten me what it was that they served me. I wrote the Vietnamese term down on a piece of parchment.” He nodded into the direction of his office, which, fortunately wasn't more than a few steps away from where they were standing.

Offline Adam Nguyen

Re: never have nothing to say [mr. salinger]
« Reply #2 on: August 31, 2020, 09:48:14 PM »
Your professors seem to be quite soft? This guy was their professor. Adam glanced sideways at Joaquim, avoiding Salinger’s gaze, and Joaquim gave him a useless grimace (thanks a lot.)

It was not a surprise to be singled out -- though it was a disappointment -- Adam adjusted his bag on his shoulders. It was kind of Salinger to have pretended there was absolutely anything else that they might be talking about than the fact that Adam had just punched his classmate in the diaphragm, but pretty useless. They’d all been there; Hudson’s eyebrows were up around his hairline and Jake whistled through his teeth. Then, his friends took their cues and abandoned him, so Adam took his own cue and grumped to the teacher’s office.

He was annoyed, unreasonably, that Salinger’s excuse to speak with him was about Vietnamese food, like all Vietnamese people were fluent in the language and experts on the cuisine, and Adam would have been more annoyed by it had these assumptions not been true in his case. It struck him more as though Salinger had struggled to remember anything about Adam other than that he was Vietnamese, which was how he liked it.

He didn’t sit down opposite the professor -- instead he slid his thumbs under the straps of his backpack and held on, like for dear life or something, and said, “You don’t have to pretend you actually care about what that restaurant gave you, I can just take a detention or whatever.”
« Last Edit: August 31, 2020, 09:48:56 PM by Lianne »

my heart says yes but my mom says no

Offline Gideon Salinger

Re: never have nothing to say [mr. salinger]
« Reply #3 on: September 01, 2020, 07:56:37 PM »
Gideon grinned. “What makes you think that I'm pretending?” he asked looking at the boy amused by his bluntness.

“Do you feel guilty because of something? You almost seem to be begging for a detention?!” He didn't really give Adam a lot of a choice to react to this before going on.

“Honestly though, I'd really like to know what I was served at that place. I thought I'd ordered something like a cappuccino but...” he shook his head, shuddering a little at the thought of the beverage he had received. It was maybe not quite so bad but having expected a cappuccino the taste had totally put him off.

“Wait a second,” he added as he opened the drawer of his desk and went through some pieces of parchment and paper. “Ah, here it is!” he smiled at Adam as he retrieved a note. “Cà phê trứng” he said, totally pronouncing the term incorrectly and, therefore, holding out the note for Adam to read it himself. “What is it?” he now asked, looking at the boy curiously.

Offline Adam Nguyen

Re: never have nothing to say [mr. salinger]
« Reply #4 on: September 02, 2020, 05:58:19 AM »
“‘Cause you just... watched me... sucker punch my roommate,” Adam said.  He was like a solid four inches shorter than Salinger was -- that, and Salinger’s amused tone, was giving him the distinct impression that he was not being treated very seriously. He bristled immediately, but the teacher didn’t give him any time to retort (probably for the best, since Adam’s experience with snapping back at adults immediately whenever he felt talked down to was that they didn’t like it. Begging for a detention indeed.)

“What, cà phê đá?” he said dubiously. He didn’t move closer to the desk, so Salinger had to hold the slip of paper out for him to read. “Cà phê trứng,” he said, correcting the professor’s pronunciation. Usually he followed that with we don’t make that here, you want something else? -- his family ran a good, self-respecting restaurant. They didn’t put eggs in gỏi cuốn tôm thịt and they definitely didn’t put eggs in the coffee.

Did Salinger expect Adam to know how it was made? He wondered vaguely about whether taking issue with that would get him out of this -- what, do you just think all Vietnamese people know how they make coffee in Hanoi? that’s a little racist -- except, again, that Salinger had been right in this case. “Means ‘egg coffee’,” he said. “It’s coffee, with an egg in it.”
« Last Edit: September 02, 2020, 06:47:49 AM by Lianne »

my heart says yes but my mom says no

Offline Gideon Salinger

Re: never have nothing to say [mr. salinger]
« Reply #5 on: September 02, 2020, 05:39:39 PM »
"Egg coffee?" Gideon repeated incredulously. Alright, now he knew why it had tasted so different from what he had been expecting. He wasn't sure if Vietnamese people in general and Adam in particular found this drink very tasty, neither was he aware that it was more of a local thing. Therefore, he decided not to say anything insulting on it. "Well," he just added, "it did taste unusual."

While he had seriously been wondering about the drink the question was not his sole reason to talk to Adam, of course. He was a firm believer of the fact that people didn't just punch other people for the fun of it, at least most people didn't. They tended to have a reason to lash out and sometimes knowing the reason made a guilty party not look quite so guilty after all. However, he could tell that Adam was still pretty worked up and he didn't want to look like a professor who was trying to give out detentions in the first week of term because he took pleasure from it for he certainly did not. Gideon liked his students even if they didn't like him back or weren't even aware of the fact that he was generally on their side.

"So," he began, throwing the note into the bin next to his desk, "you're having a bad day today." It was a casual statement rather than a question. "Sometimes the new term presents us with new challenges we did not expect, doesn't it?!" He was unsure if that was the case for Adam but it surely was the case for himself. Dottie being a member of staff now clearly meant a big challenge for Gideon. This fact clearly was messing with Gideon's life and he wasn't yet sure if it was for the better or for the worse. He would have liked to talk to someone about it but his best mate seemed way too familiar with Dottie - Ricky had known that Dottie would come to teach at Ilvermorny long before he had known it, after all - and he could hardly talk to a student about it. However, talking about Adam's problems felt like a good distraction from his own issues. He could tell though, that Adam was not going to confide in him, not yet anyway.

"I was thinking of letting students try a new potion I've developed over the summer in class sometime," he offered. "I'll have to figure out precautions though and I'd need a helping hand." Well, rather a guinea pig, but Gideon thought that putting it like that would not help his case. "I got the impression you'd rather not spend time with your housemates right now so why don't you assist me?!"

Offline Adam Nguyen

Re: never have nothing to say [mr. salinger]
« Reply #6 on: September 05, 2020, 04:30:09 PM »
“Probably the egg,” mumbled Adam, who was making great efforts not to seem offended. He supposed he wasn’t -- it wasn’t like he even liked egg coffee -- he was just in a pissy mood, which was Jake’s fault, not Salinger’s. Still holding his backpack straps, he shifted his weight from side to side -- now that he’d answered the question, he should have been allowed to go, but he supposed both he and Salinger knew that he hadn’t been called in here to talk about egg coffee, so he didn’t even bother turning to go.

Sure enough, Salinger dunked his note into the trash and set straight into lecture mode; Adam had to fight not to roll his eyes. Surely he wasn’t expected to explain what the new challenges were that he hadn’t expected -- not that Adam thought he knew what they even were. Jake’s girlfriend, sixth year, his driver’s license, worsening acne, the new Charms professor, none of that actually seemed like something to have gotten so worked up about.

Whatever the “new challenges” in his life were, it didn’t matter: Adam had just taken one too many jabs about things he was sensitive about, and Salinger was just feeding him normal teacher bullshit so they could both pretend this was symptomatic of Adam’s deeper issues and not just that he’d popped his lid at being called a few stupid names.

“Uh huh,” he said, and left it at that.

He didn’t like the sound of this at all -- he knew Salinger was a competent potioneer, but still. Adam’s mom had discouraged drinking strange substances just because adults told him to. Particularly if there weren’t precautions in place yet. It reminded him suspiciously of, like, a canary in a coal mine. Serve him right for getting in a fight in front of the alchemy professor.

But he couldn’t deny not particularly wanting to chase after his roommates and having to apologise. “Is it safe?” he said, adjusting his backpack, brow furrowing nervously. “I kinda meant, like, normal detention.” Sitting bored out of his skull for a few hours was much more Adam’s speed than being poisoned.

my heart says yes but my mom says no

Offline Gideon Salinger

Re: never have nothing to say [mr. salinger]
« Reply #7 on: September 06, 2020, 10:56:30 AM »
“Yes, I suppose so.” Gideon said in response to Adam's mumbled comment. He could tell that Adam didn't believe that he had asked him to come to his office just to answer this question but the professor had really been curious about it and it had been a good pretext, at least he thought so.

The boy asked if it was safe and Gideon shrugged. “Yeah,” he said, “it is. I mean, it's on sale already. It's pretty safe. Some precautions need to be taken but then it's entirely safe.”

The Alchemy professor wondered if Adam really believed that he'd try out any unproven potions on students. It would surely cost him his job if he did. Then again was that really so important anymore now? With Dottie teaching at Ilvermorny things had changed. He did not stroll through the corridors of the school feeling relaxed and enjoying himself – he was on guard all the time now. Things had changed and he felt that due to Dottie's presence he was drifting away from his best mate Ricky, too. Life had become complicated from one moment to the next. It was incredible how quickly things could change.

He shook his head as if to rid himself of his thoughts and focused on Adam again. “Why do you keep talking about detention by the way?” he asked. He knew why the boy might think that a professor might give him detention but he was not that kind of professor. He didn't believe in punishment.

“I don't want to give you detention. Truth be told, I think you guys need to sort out your issues yourselves. I'll admit that I don't think that hitting people is the best approach but that's just my personal opinion. I take it that you had a good reason for doing so anyway.” He paused briefly and smiled at the boy. “So, do you want to help me and get a sample of a potion that's new on the market of joke potions or would you rather go back to your house mates and apologise to Jack?”

Offline Adam Nguyen

Re: never have nothing to say [mr. salinger]
« Reply #8 on: September 09, 2020, 09:18:59 AM »

“Precautions?” said Adam. “What precautions? What does it do?” He realised he didn’t even really know what Salinger was all about -- what he specialised in, what his expertise was in, what he’d been doing before he’d come here to Massachusetts to lecture idiots like Adam about the changes and challenges of being a teenager.

And to be a lame nice-guy professor -- Adam was more suspicious of teachers that acted like they cared about him than he’d ever been of teachers that picked a bone with him at first sight. It was like Salinger seriously didn’t want to give him a detention, like Salinger couldn’t even imagine why Adam had thought he might. Why did he keep talking about detention? He couldn’t help it, really -- he’d always had a pathological need to cut through bullshit like this. “I dunno,” he said -- you had to fight bullshit with bullshit, he’d always believed.

He was about to ask if he was just going to get out of this without being punished at all -- at least, not punished more than he already had been, by having to talk about changes and challenges and Hanoi coffee -- but it was answered for him a moment later: yes, he was. Salinger even seemed to think that he’d had a good reason.

“I did,” said Adam resolutely, though he hadn’t really. He was usually more patient with Jake than this -- in fact, he was usually more patient with insult in general -- it’d just been a really bad day. A Thursday.

Adam did not want to apologise to Jack -- “Jake,” he corrected -- but he really did not want to drink a practical joke. He’d never seen the humour in those things. He stood for an unbearably indecisive moment before he decided he didn’t want to talk to Jake more than he didn’t want to drink a joke potion. Besides, he had no desire to go back and tell them all he’d gotten off scot-free -- that was just asking for a second fight. “I’ll drink the potions,” he said finally, reluctantly.

my heart says yes but my mom says no

Offline Gideon Salinger

Re: never have nothing to say [mr. salinger]
« Reply #9 on: September 13, 2020, 03:11:06 PM »
“Yes, precautions,” he said, smiling at the boy. He did not intend to explain this to him yet, not unless he accepted to help him anyway.

“Yeah, I don't know either,” Gideon said as Adam stated that he didn't know why he kept talking about detention. Honestly, the professor didn't see any benefit in detention. Where was the sense in punishing students for something they did? It was a much better idea to try and get to the core of the problem and for that they needed to trust him. Teenagers did not trust their teachers easily though. In fact, professors were lucky when their students trusted them to know about the subject they were teaching. Getting them to trust a professor enough to share their personal problems with them was tricky task that required some patience and empathy.

“Well, that's all I need to know,” the professor said. He was quite curious to find out what this fight had been about but he could sense that Adam wouldn't tell him anything if he asked now.

So he had got the name of Adam's classmate wrong? “Right, Jake,” he said, nodding. He knew the name of the other boy but sometimes he got names mixed up anyway. He was just glad that he hadn't accidentally ended up calling Adam Alan instead.

The boy was indecisive and Gideon could not blame him. He didn't know what was expecting him so that was pretty natural. The professor still hoped that the Wampus student would join him.

“Good!” Gideon said brightly. “Then let's move to the classroom. That's where we need to think of the precautions and once they've been taken, you can try the potion. I assure you, it's something special.” Yes, Gideon was rather proud of himself and he liked to build up some tension. He did not bother to make conversation as they walked into the classroom but as they got there he first took care of the windows being properly closed and even sealed them with an additional charm. The most important precaution was that the room was properly locked so there was no way to accidentally getting out. “That's a much needed precaution,” he explained. “Can you do cushioning charms?” He asked curiously. “If you learned them already could you please use them on the walls and the ceiling while I put the furniture safely in a corner?”

Offline Adam Nguyen

Re: never have nothing to say [mr. salinger]
« Reply #10 on: September 27, 2020, 01:37:05 PM »
“Precautions?” repeated Adam, a touch more distrustfully. He liked nothing about this -- not Salinger’s attitude, not the fact that Salinger didn’t want to tell him anything, not Salinger’s benign smile. Adam tightened his grip on his backpack straps, shoulders starting to ache with his cringe. He was beginning to regret this; he wondered if he’d be punished if he just made a break for it right now. He could probably move faster than Salinger, if he had the element of surprise. (Without it, he was toast. He was shorter and fatter and Salinger wasn’t that old.)

He gave the door a wistful glance but didn’t move.

Salinger’s good mood was really starting to grate on him as they moved to the classroom -- Adam thought it should have been clear, from how this all had started, that he was having a lousy day. It didn’t seem particularly polite to be this cheerful, given the circumstances, but they all knew professors could do pretty much whatever they wanted to, at Ilvermorny.

He stopped only a few steps into the doorway, watching warily as Salinger sealed the windows shut. Can you do cushioning charms? Yes, Adam could, but Adam was a bit busy right now trying to figure out what the nature of this potion was. Locking the windows, cushioning the walls, cushioning the ceiling -- it was obvious. He was going to blow up like that chick in the Willy Wonka movie. Probably even turn purple while he was at it. Hell, no.

“Am I going to blow up like a balloon?” he said, ignoring the request for cushioning charms. “Or -- I don’t fucking know -- am I gonna turn into a crazy bird? Or a bat?” He let go of his backpack straps finally, shoved his hands deep into his pants pockets. “I won’t drink it if you don’t tell me what it does,” he said. He struggled for an excuse better than my mom taught me better and politer than what kind of moron do you think I am? and landed on, “Stranger danger.”

my heart says yes but my mom says no

Offline Gideon Salinger

Re: never have nothing to say [mr. salinger]
« Reply #11 on: October 04, 2020, 08:47:38 AM »
“No,” Gideon said, an amused smirk spreading across his face. It was nice to have students guess what he had come up this time and sometimes such a random guess had actually served as an inspiration for him. However, the professor doubted very much that anyone would enjoy blowing up like a balloon and, thus, discarded the idea before it was properly fleshed out.

He could see that Adam did not trust him and wouldn't take the potion not knowing what it did. Gideon supposed that this was actually a good thing – no witch or wizard should blindly sip potions they didn't know – but even if he said what it was it could technically still be something entirely different. Either way, Gideon was not going to lie and if Adam didn't like a surprise then that was okay with him.

“It's a weightless potion,” he explained. “When you take it you can defy gravity for a few minutes. It is only sold to wizards who are of age so it's a privilege that you get to try it,” he joked. “There's an operation manual with every vial sold that states clearly that it should only be used in closed rooms. The vial is even charmed to only open after the manual has been unfolded. I wish there was a way to make sure that people actually read it but… that's tricky. Anyway, it's only on sale in one shop and the shopworkers are all strongly advised to inform the customers that precautions need to be taken.”

He paused and looked at the boy, wondering if Adam would run for it now or if he was intrigued. Gideon himself quite enjoyed the potion. Being weightless was an interesting sensation. It was like flying on a broom but better somehow. Well, at least the professor thought so. He hoped that Adam would agree to try it in safe surroundings. Nothing could happen as long as Gideon was around and everything was properly sealed so he couldn't end up flying out of a window.

Offline Adam Nguyen

Re: never have nothing to say [mr. salinger]
« Reply #12 on: October 15, 2020, 07:57:46 AM »
Salinger seemed to think this was really funny, which Adam might have been flattered by if that’d been his intention at all. As it was, it struck him more as a tremendous offense. He clenched his fists in his pockets, anxious not to let on that he was annoyed. He’d never been one to pull faces in front of adults, but for right now he was grateful that his mom was so sensitive to his attitude -- he’d gotten good at hiding it.

“Like in Mary Poppins?” he said, but hastened to add -- “Never mind. It’s a movie. People float.” He hated explaining no-maj movies to wizards; they invariably didn’t understand and it made him look stupid, like he did explaining most things.

So not only was this potion untested, but Adam was underage; if Salinger had been a little less wink-wink-nudge-nudge about the whole thing and if Adam had been a little more underage, it’d have been kind of cool. As it was, Adam was only a month from turning seventeen (and three weeks, if he was counting, which he was not) and Salinger was unbearable, so he afforded the little joke a mere apprehensive “Uh huh.”

Adam, unsurprisingly, had never been weightless in his life. Even as a baby he’d been fat. All the fifth graders at his school had gone to the Tech and gotten to experience earthquake simulators and whatever (not the same thing, but he’d heard what zero-g was like) but he’d been in fourth grade when MACUSA had visited his family. He had not enjoyed flying very much. Not because he was bad at it -- skating was a better launching point than he’d expected it to be, when it came to brooms -- just because he hated the sensation of sitting on a broom. But, he could be convinced, flying without a broom might be nice.

“Fine,” he said, drawing himself up as best he could. “Where’s it?”

my heart says yes but my mom says no

Offline Gideon Salinger

Re: never have nothing to say [mr. salinger]
« Reply #13 on: October 17, 2020, 06:07:31 PM »
Gideon almost felt offended when Adam indicated that there was a movie in which people floated. It seemed to undermine his own success to have made a potion if no-majs had a film about that. How had they done it though? How could muggles possibly achieve what had taken him months? The man frowned as he tried to figure that bit out. He had heard about special effects in movies but wasn't quite sure how they worked and, therefore, was seriously wondering how simple no-majs had managed to make people float.

“A movie in which people float,” he echoed, finding it hard to move on from this bit of information that his student had given him. “I guess I'll have to...” where did no-majs watch their films again? “go to the cinema at some point to watch it,” he offered, unaware that the cinema was probably not showing the movie that Adam was referring to.

Gideon smiled and couldn't deny that he was a little bit excited to hear the boy agree to try the potion. He flicked his wand a few more times to make sure everything was as secure as it could be.

“Here,” the professor said as he retrieved a small vial from his pocket of his jeans. “Just so you know, this has been tested diligently. There are no unwanted side effects. There's nothing to worry about.”

He handed the boy the vial with a blueish-purple potion in it and waited patiently for him to uncork it and take a sip. “One sip of it should make you weightless for up to five minutes. It varies depending on size and weight…” He looked at the boy and shrugged indecisively. “I suppose for you it'll be maybe three or four minutes per sip,” he said. He had had a young witch test it who had been quite thin and short and she been exactly 5 minutes and 37 seconds in the air. Another test person had been overweight and about his own size and had only hovered in the air for a little under two minutes. It seemed pretty logical that Adam would end up somewhere in-between that.

“If you take more than one sip it will take longer, of course. Though I'm not yet entirely sure if it just adds up or is disproportional. However, the amount really only influences the duration of the experience and does not change anything else,” he explained, guessing that he should take all possible worries away from Adam before he'd try the potion.

Offline Adam Nguyen

Re: never have nothing to say [mr. salinger]
« Reply #14 on: October 20, 2020, 09:24:38 AM »
Go to the cinema? At least Adam’s concern that he’d been condescending was fully unfounded -- he couldn’t help a smirk. Go to the cinema. Who talked like that anymore? “Good luck,” he said, “It’s about fifty years old.” Julie Andrews was in it and she was definitely like fifty years older now.

The potion was a swirly indigo color; he uncorked it to smell. It was vaguely fruity, which (along with the color) did nothing to assuage his fear that he’d blow up like the Willy Wonka chick. (There had been floating in that movie too, he thought, but if Mr. Salinger had never heard of Mary Poppins, he probably wouldn’t have heard of Willy Wonka either.

“Whatever,” he mumbled, to all of Salinger’s reassurances -- as nervous as he’d been leading up to this moment, now that he had the potion in his hand he just wanted to get it over with and skip all this whinging. He wasn’t a baby. It was measured in sips, which was a pitifully inexact amount -- as Salinger went on about the dosage, Adam frowned and tried to remember the feeling of drinking in the skate park with his cousin over the summer when they were supposed to be heading back home, the short giddy glugs they’d taken, the feel of that. A swig, he thought, not a drink -- just a little bit of liquid at a time.

(He and Derek had caught hell for that; enough time had passed that it was funny now.)

“Salud,” he said wryly, and drank some.

The effect was immediate: he floated off his feet, drifting toward the ceiling. wished he’d had the foresight to put his backpack down, since it was doing a lousy job weighing him down and of no use otherwise. He pinwheeled his arms to try and get closer to some furniture he could hold onto, but apparently wasn’t aerodynamic enough. “Shit,” he announced. He didn’t feel like he was blowing up… yet. Just in case, he said, “Am I turning blue?”

my heart says yes but my mom says no