Where: Seth's office/private chambers
When: This week-ish
What: An interesting combination of schnoogles and angst
Theodore walked down the corridor towards Seth's office for what he had affectionately deemed his daily constitutional. He brushed a hand through his hair, succeeding in arranging his hair even more messily than it had been initially, before knocking on the door and pushing it open without waiting for a response. "I'm here," he announced with a smirk. "I know you were waiting with bated breath."
Seth had decided that this time, they wouldn't meet in his office. This was convenient, considering his private quarters ajoined his office, meaning taht all he had to do was leave the door to the small room and stretch out on the couch in his room. "Over here," he called towards Theodore, having been expecting the Slytherin. "And I was counting down the minutes, dear Theo."
"I figured as much," Theodore replied easily, stepping into the man's rooms. "That's why I'm a little early today. I didn't want to make you wait too much." He gazed around the room for a second before quite deliberately sitting on Seth's legs. "So what do you have to snack on for today?" he asked with a grin.
Seth immediately broke out into a grin when Theodore sat on him. "Such a one track mind," he teased, sitting up slightly to run his fingers through Theodore's hair, smoothing it down somewhat. "There are some brownies and cookies sitting over on the counter by the fridge. Help yourself."
Theodore glanced at the plate the man had indicated. "But it's so far awaaaaay..." he whined, stretching out his arm and fingers towards the plate as though that would make it come closer. He could have easily summoned the plate with his wand, but he wanted to see if he could get Seth to do it.
Seth simply rolled his eyes, slid his arms around Theodore, and embraced the boy. "You, dear Theodore, are a whiner," he murmured, kissing the Slytherin's cheek before drawing his wand and summoning the plate to them.
Theodore was a little taken by surprise by the kiss, but decided to ignore it for the sake of chocolate. He picked up a brownie and began eating it. "And you, Seth, quite enjoy it," he retorted. "It gives you something to do during the course of your rather boring day."
"What, bake you brownies and oblige your chocolate craving?" Seth teased, arm still around Theodore's waist as he stole a brownie for himself as well.
Theodore chuckled. "Yes, that's exactly it," he responded, leaning back into the man's arms easily. "Though I hadn't known you baked these yourself. They're fantastic."
"Of course I baked them myself. What sort do you take me for?" Seth demanded, munching happily on one of the chocolatey squares. "I will not just give my favourite patient something that came out of a box."
Theodore rolled his eyes. "I figured you might have gotten them from the kitchens," he snorted. "And as far as I know, I am your only steady patient, so don't try to get all over-dramatic with me." He licked a smudge of chocolate from the corner of his mouth before taking another brownie.
"Fine then. Rain on my glorious parade... that was of course filled with rainbow colours." Seth winked and stretched back down on his couch, finishing off his brownie and licking his fingers clean, even though a smudge of chocolate was left on the corner of his mouth, which he clearly did not notice.
Theodore rolled his eyes, and leaned forward, brushing the corner of Seth's mouth with his thumb, wiping away the chocolate before licking the smudge from his thumb. "Yeah, I bet it was full of rainbow colours," he chuckled teasingly.
"Hey! I like rainbows!" Seth insisted, head tilting to brush his lips over Theodore's thumb as it pulled away. "They're pretty and sparkly and lovely and stuff..." To say he was in an odd mood would've been an understatement... But he was still as cheerful as ever.
"And what has gotten into you today?" Theodore asked with a smirk. "Not that I'm complaining or anything, but you are acting very strangely..."
"If you're not complaining, then it doesn't matter, now does it?" Seth teased, leaning up just long enough to nip at the tip of Theodore's nose.
Theodore snorted, wrinkling his nose at the nip. "I suppose not, but I'd rather like to know, since you're biting me and all." He couldn't really deny that part of him was enjoying the man's increased affection, but he wasn't exactly sure what to do with it.
"You like it, don't deny it," Seth teased, winking at Theodore but still settling down somewaht, not wanting to scare him.
Theodore didn't bother trying, simply reclined back on the couch folding one arm behind his head. "So you think you can escape from admitting what's gotten you all riled up just by changing the subject?" he asked calmly, eyes sliding shut.
"How is saying that you like it changing the subject?" Seth inquired, both arms finding their way around Theodore's shoulders, holding the Slytherin against him in an almost protective fashion.
"Because instead of answering my question, you are trying to distract me from it," Theodore replied, relaxing in the man's arms. He turned his head to look into Seth's eyes. "And you're trying to do it again," he murmured with a slight smirk.
"Can't fool you," Seth murmured, gazing straight back into the other's eyes. "What wasthe question again?" A small smile played at the corner of his lips, though he would never admit that he had come to look forward to Theodore's visits.
Theodore froze as their eyes locked. "I...I've forgotten," he murmured softly, before breaking their gave, finding the pattern of the carpet intensely interesting. He bit his lower lip harshly. What was he thinking? Blaise had been jealous. Jealous that he was close to Seth. He still had a small chance with the other Slytherin, but that chance would be destroyed if he did anything with Seth. So why were these thoughts running through his head?
"It doesn't matter, then," Seth said softy, lips brushing over Theodore's cheek before settling more comfortably into the couch. He noticed the Slytherin's discomfort and pushed no more. "Relax," he whispered. "it's okay."
Theodore nodded, trying to force himself to relax, which was really rather counterproductive and did no more than to make him more tense. Finally, he rose and moved to a nearby chair, pointedly looking anywhere but at the man he was trying desperately not to pounce on.
As much as he tried not to let Theodore see it... Seth's gaze shone with hurt when the Slytherin moved away from him. It had nothing to do with their sessions, or progress, or any other thing. It had to do with the two of them... and it hurt that Theodore wouldn't remain with him.
Theodore bit his lip even more sharply at the look from Seth. "I...I can't..." he whispered, lowering his eyes guiltily. He was fairly certain what the man's expression meant, and as much as he wanted the same thing, Blaise meant more to him.
"I'm sorry," Seth murmured, drawing his legs up to his chest. "I didn't mean it that way..." And he really hadn't. There had been nothing sexual about his advances... but most wouldn't understand that.
Theodore coloured and averted his eyes again. And now he felt like an idiot for worrying about such a thing. "I'm sorry," he muttered, his tone vaguely disgustted. Of course Seth hadn't meant it that way. It would have been extremely unprofessional.
Sighing, Seth ran his hands back through his hair. "I didn't mean to upset you, Theo. I just... am an affectionate kinda guy... And... it gets to be rather hard, spending all my time by myself unless I'm busy trying to fix someone elses problems. You always seemed to like being held... I just... like cuddling, I guess. I've started really looking forward to your coming up here daily..."
Theodore nodded. "It's not your fault," he murmured. "I guess I just got the wrong idea. I do like being held...it's just, I'm used to Blaise being the one to do it..." He brushed a hand through his hair, drawing his legs up to his chest and burying his face in his knees. "I miss him so much..."
"Oh sweetie..." Seth murmured, immediately getting to his feet and crossing the room to Theodore, kneeling down infront of his chair. He reached up to rest a hand over one of the other boy's. "You're doing well, Theodore... you're on the right track."
"We spoke a week ago," Theodore murmured softly. "The first time since he visited me in the infirmary. I wanted to stay away from him. Didn't want either of us to get hurt again...but I can't stay away from him. I ended up holding him while we slept... It was so nice, but it reminded me of what I lost...and I can hardly bear it..."
Unprofessional statements, here we go. "Stay with me, then," Seth offered softly, unable to believe even his own words. "I don't want to see you hurt any longer, Theodore... and I truly don't want to have to put you back in the infirmary so he doesn't set us right back to where we began... So stay here... I can transfigure you your own bed, if you'd like."
Theodore's eyes widened in shock with the offer. "No," he murmured. "Blaise would never understand that. He's...he's already jealous of the time I spend with you, that you make me so happy..."
"This isn't about Blaise, Theodore. This has nothing to do with him. This is about you, and your health, and what you need to keep yourself stable. Being around him makes you worse... I can see that just from how edgy you are right now."
Theodore shook his head fervently. "I don't want to hurt him. Being around him does not make me edgy...the thought that I might hurt him does. I will not do anything that could cause problems between us more severe than those that are already there."
"Let me hold you?" Seth offered softly, wanting direly to pull the Slytherin into his arms and cradle him.
Theodore nodded. He could handle that, knowing now that Seth meant nothing by it. He slid to the floor and into Seth's lap, wrapping his arms firmly around the man's neck and nuzzling into the flesh needily.
Seth's arms closed around Theodore the moment the other's body was against his own, holding him close. "I've come to care about you a great deal, Theodore," he whispered, nuzzling the other's hair tenderly. "I just want to keep you safe. You know that."
Theodore nodded. "Thank you," he breathed. "You have no idea how much that means to me. You're probably right that it isn't the best idea to be around Blaise so much yet, but at the same time, I can't just avoid him. Not only is it not healthy, but I don't want to avoid him."
"I know it isn't healthy to avoid him utterly, Theodore. But I also know it isn't healthy to grow that close to him all over again. Not when he inflicted this in the first place... Blaise still holds a great deal of sway over your emotions."
Theodore sighed, pressing his forehead to Seth's shoulder. "But I want to be close to him. It can be different this time..." He lifted his face to gaze into the man's eyes pleadingly. "I'm not just being optimistic, am I?" he asked softly.
As much as Seth didn't want to crush Theodore's hopes... "You are," he whispered, soothing Theodore's hair back from his face. "You're getting too hopeful again, Theodore. Things don't change that easily, that quickly. You two... just aren't right for eachother. And you're going to need to realize that."
Tears sprang to Theodore's eyes, and he pressed his face to Seth's robes again. "If Blaise isn't right for me, I can't imagine who is," he sniffled quietly, fingers clenching at the man's robes insistently.
"Someone is," Seth whispered, cradling THeodore in his arms, kissing his forehead tenderly. "I promise you that, Theodore."
Theodore's breath gradually began to calm, his chin resting on Seth's shoulder, head tilted towards the man's. "That isn't something you can promise me, Seth," he murmured softly.
Seth sighed softly, fingers continuing to work through Theodore's hair, doing his best to be reassuring. "You know, Theodore.... if things were different... if it was a different situation between us... I could easily see myself falling in love with you." His lips again brushed the boy's temple. "So yes, I can promise you that. Because if I can like you that much... I guarantee there are others out there that will too."
Theodore winced and stood uneasily. "I need to go," he murmured hoarsely, looking everywhere but at the man at his feet. "I've still got an essay to finish for Charms." He didn't want to hear that. Especially not after he'd been told that he and Blaise weren't right for one another. It wasn't something he could wrap his mind around.
"Theodore," Seth said hastily, all at once getting to his feet. He moved infront of the other boy, catching his chin and forcing their eyes to meet. "I didn't mean that in any way to upset you, and I'm not looking for anything to happen. I just want you to know that Blaise isn't the only one that's out there that could like you."
"Fine; you already said that," Theodore retorted, jerking his chin from the man's grip and glaring at the floor. "I'm not going to do anything rash. I just can't be here right now."
Sighing, Seth stepped aside. It was bound to happen... He was bound to make such an error with a patient. "I'll see you tommorow then, Theodore," he said softly, almost sadly.
Theodore didn't respond, simply stepped around the man and headed into Seth's office and then out the door. Instead of heading back to the Slytherin common room, however, he headed out of the dungeons and towards the West Tower. He was telling the truth; he wouldn't do anything rash, but he couldn't be around people right now.