Thomas turned, a pen in his hand and a splotch of ink on his cheek. Charlie came jogging towards him across the school grounds, waving and laughing.
“I was hoping I’d find you out here. Working on the paper for Markov’s class?” The blond boy dropped dramatically to sit down and opened a notebook. When Thomas nodded, he grinned. “Think you could help me out? I really don’t get this whole…temporal injunctive thing.”
“Temporal injunction,” Thomas said immediately and then blushed. “Sorry.”
“No, no, do go on. This might explain my confusion. And anyway, I betcha I’ll learn way better from you, oh glorious teacher, than I ever have in class.”
“That’s only because you pay more attention to me.”
“I’d pay more attention to Markov if he was a handsome devil like you, Tom, but sad as it is the only professor on this entire campus worth ogling is Fenrirson and I’m not into tails.”
Thomas chucked an apple from his snack at the other boy. Charlie just caught it with a wry thanks and took a bite out of it.
“Anyway…the paper. Temporal Injunction is really simple-“
Thomas flushed, embarrassed.
“I’m sorry, Tommy-boy, but not all of us spent our entire lives studying at the knee of the most powerful mages in two dimensions…”
“No, no, do go on.”
Charlie scooted closer and leaned in to get a good look at Thomas’s notes. Thomas inhaled deeply, trying to get back on track with his explanation and entirely lost his focus. Had Charlie always smelled so…good? That thought stopped him entirely in his tracks. What was he even thinking? He needed to breathe, needed to focus. Temporal injunction. Explain it. Come on, idiot. Mouth in gear and expound on arcane theory. You do it all the time. Thomas looked up at Charlie and his heart nearly stopped. Slamming everything that felt odd down, Thomas started to explain the theory as in-depth as he could. He tried to focus on literally anything other than the pounding of his own heart and other such confusing physical symptoms.