Craning her neck to see which card Drew had selected (and just as quickly reverting to her previous posture as he turned the card around to face her), Marley hummed thoughtfully. Luckily he’d followed his suggestion with a question, so her five-track brain was occupied instead of having to make an immediate decision on this card. “It’s for Claudia, she got engaged, I mean, technically, betrothed--” her nose wrinkled compulsively at the word “--over the summer.” While she was sort of anti-marriage in general (just look at her own parents, they had done fine without ever getting married! Or as fine as you could get considering they’d spent her entire childhood breaking up and getting back together. Anyways, now even if they wanted to they couldn’t get married without excluding Jaime, so clearly the institution of marriage just was not an option for a progressive and diversity-positive society) the term “engaged” still implied an existing relationship with mutual agreement and consent to take things to the next bureaucratic level, while “betrothed” went right back to the Middle Ages of parents marrying off their daughters to the highest bidder. It was such a ridiculously outdated concept
Okay to be fair, it could be worse; it wasn’t as if Claudia’s parents had promised her off to some balding old rich dude in a care home (not to be ageist but still, ew) nor was it a total stranger she’d never even met. Instead, it was a young rich dude she actually liked, from what Marley gathered in their conversations. Also to be fair, just because they didn’t have an established romantic relationships didn’t mean it couldn’t work out. Logically, Marley knew she didn’t have any right to judge, part because her bestie had made it very clear throughout their entire friendship that the world she lived in as a high-class Pureblood ran on a total tangent and Marley didn’t have the context to understand it, and part because she just unfortunately had limited personal experience with dating and marriage stuff. But still, she couldn’t imagine getting married to someone she’d never even gone on a date with. How much did Claudia really know about this guy? What if they got married, and only then she found out that, like, he slurped when he drank, or any other more serious revelations she couldn’t think of off the top of her head (and also didn’t want to consider anyways because that put the possibility into the university and Claudia didn’t deserve that)?
Taking the sloth card from Drew, she grinned. “Anyways, this is perfect. Sloths are adorable. And like, it’s a pun, but not too lame, so I think she’ll like it better than… well…” Glancing down at her hand, her brown eyes caught on a card that declared ‘Holy Catrimony, Batman!’ with a comic-style drawing of cheetahs and a bat. That was just trying too hard. Also, what? “I guess I could charm it to say betrothal instead of engagement,” she mused, turning back to the sloth card. That might make her opinions a little too obvious, though, and she was trying to be a supportive friend. She took a step back from Drew to start putting the other cards away, but kept talking, conveniently temporarily forgetting that the younger boy was dating someone whose family fell right in the same category of Purebloods. “I don’t really get the whole betrothal thing. It’s so archaic. I get there’s a delicate sociopolitical balance or whatever--” her eye-roll indicated how important that balance must be “--but families bartering over who gets the honour, like, gosh, what kind of cash do they need to cough up to even come to an agreement? Purebloods marrying for love is like, practically World War III. We’ve got it way easier; you could just walk up to the courthouse on your lunch break and get it done.”