In Dakota’s personal experience of RMI, all six years of it, it was that anything with the word ‘mandatory’ in front of it was not going to be a good time. True to form, she was not at all, zero percent absolutely not, enjoying this class.
Not that Dakota really thought that anybody in this class was particularly enjoying it. Professor Blair was in the middle of describing things that Dakota felt were entirely irrelevant to her, but looking around the lecture hall, there were plenty of people looking very uncomfortable. Dakota was not uncomfortable, she was annoyed and bored, and didn’t have any desire to be here at all. Not in the least. The reality of the situation was that she’d already had a fairly comprehensive sex ed talk at the LGBT youth center on Pearl Street (which okay had been kind of embarrassing but only because David was there too) and it has actually been relevant to her. Sure, Professor Blair wasn’t making things all about cishets, but that didn’t mean that what the professor was going on was relevant to Dakota.
And Dakota knew what was coming because she had the unfortunate experience of having taken this class before, on top of everything else. She also had two older siblings - she knew this was the dreaded class wherein they would be assigned a partner on Estelle’s whim and would be tasked with taking care of a creepy fake baby for some amount of time. But the thing was, under no circumstances would Dakota ever end up with an accidental baby. It just wasn’t a thing that was going to happen. She did not have the equipment for a baby to happen accidentally, and she was pretty sure she was straight anyway, and even if she wasn’t or if she ended up with a trans guy (which seemed unlikely because all the trans guys she knew from the youth center were absolute assholes), the sort of activities that resulted in accidental babies were not things she wanted to do.
However, the thing about Professor Blair was that she was entirely a sadist, and Dakota knew better than to point out all the reasons this lesson was not applicable to her, because it would do no good whatsoever. So instead here she was, dressed all in black and with her shoulders crossed over her chest, wearing her pointiest lace-up black boots, and waiting for Professor Blair to get on with it.
Then Professor Blair got on with it. And Dakota hated her because of all people, she ended up with Elliot Phippen. She didn’t really inherently mind Elliot, but in the last year or so she’d kind of noticed that he was attractive, which was not what she wanted to be going on right now for a number of reasons including that Dakota had a boyfriend, kind of. They weren’t exclusive or anything but they had - things had been done. Over the summer. Dakota would have thought that would make things make more sense, but in actuality it had just made her realize that she was really prone to having crushes, and specifically on people who were unavailable, like Drew and DJ. There had never been any danger of her being paired with either boy because again, Blair was a complete sadist, so Dakota had thought she was safe. That was apparently not the case.
And as it turned out, it was double not the case because the first thing Elliot, who was inconveniently sitting right by Dakota, did was fake-propose. It was really jokey, Elliot was always really jokey, but it was also in a way that made Dakota feel very warm inside on a couple of different levels.
“How do you know it’s yours?” was the thing that helpfully came out of Dakota’s mouth while her brain scrambled to right itself. “It could be someone else’s, you never know.”