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Chapter 7: The Perk to being Me
!TheInbetweener @ TDA
"I'll see you both tomorrow, yeah?" Abby messes up my hair just because she knows I hate it, then moves away. "And you stop sulking," she scolds, obviously to Jack. "I'm glad you're finally out of hospital, it's not been the same without you two together. See you, Louis."
I wave and listen to her leave. Abby came back Monday, saying she felt much better, and thanked us both for the card we didn't even know we'd gotten for her, let alone signed. I appreciated what Louis did so much, I almost sold my soul in return. Almost. I'm not that stupid. I'm not even sure why he did it, I just know that he talked to Lucy.
But, like any guy faking doing something they didn't actually do, I accepted her gratitude with a smile, told her it was no problem and returned the hug. It was in everyone's best interests. I introduced her to Louis that day, he chose to stay with us to finish his homework. Well, he offered to move first, but Abby said it was fine, that he had to stay so she could finally meet the only other person able to put up with me in the mornings. I was outraged; of course he could put up with me, he was only helping less than a week!
...I mean, I'm not that bad!
You know, it's not even worth lying to myself. My name is Ciaran and I like my sleep, thank you very much.
Louis and Abby get on very well, it turns out. After two days, you'd think they'd known each other forever. I think he'll fit in just fine in our little group.
Oh, right, I still need to tell him that...
Jack groans and stretches before I can even open my mouth and his crutches echo on the floor. "Alright, I'm off. My healer says I still need to do my walking excerises for my leg, so I'm going back to the common room. You coming, Key?"
I grimace, but bite back my many comments; it's the only name, hated or otherwise, that Louis knows, as he still doesn't know my actual name, so it's the only thing others can call me around him. They're loving it, Jack and Lucy, I can tell.
I almost want to tell him my name. But not quite. He keeps trying to get people to tell him, but my people work quickly, and by people I mean Declan and Simon, and no one will tell him. Personally, I think it's more because they just don't care than wanting to help with his punishment/my amusement.
Not that it matters; I still get what I want. I always get what I want. I guess that's just the one perk to being me. And by me I mean well off parents and rich grandparents who like to spoil their favorite grandson.
It's a... Hard... Life.
There was something I wanted to say... Oh. "So, what did you think? Hanging out with a couple of nutters and me?"
He chuckles quietly, we are in a library after all, and I hear the thud of a book being shut along with the sound of rustling papers. "Not bad," Louis finally answers.
"Just not bad?" I ask, trying to sound casual. "So, you wouldn't want to hang out with us more often?"
It's quiet for a moment and the next time he speaks, I almost jump out of my skin and I stand up because he's right next to me. "Why? Want me to?"
"Don't do that again!" He laughs at me, so I shake my head. "No, not anymore I don't. I change my mind; you are not allowed in our group."
"I'm sorry I scared you," is all he says and I bet the devil can make a sarcastc comment sound sincere.
"You're lucky I like you," I glare. "Or I wouldn't still be stood here."
"I am lucky you like me. And for the record, you're not so bad yourself." I know that tone, when your voice is low and quiet and flirtatious. Only two other people in the world have spoken to me that way; the guy who made me realise I was in fact gay (that his name escapes me really shows just how much he mattered) and -
"Here you are." Oh no. Roxanne Weasley. "Hey, Louis."
"Roxy," he replies.
"How come you're still here, your lesson's already over and Jack's gone?"
How the hell does she know that? Not just that, how the hell does she know anything? Well, almost. "He's hanging out with me, Rox. Would you like to join us?"
I shake my head a little to quickly; I feel woozy. "No. Roxanne, here, is very busy. She has to go."
"I'm completely free, I promise," she tells me, running a finger down my chest and giggling. I hear Louis hide a snigger by coughing. Whether he's laughing at the situation or whatever expression I'm probably not hiding very well, I don't know. Not that Roxanne notices any expression, she never seems to. Ever.
I remove her hand from me hesitantly and let go. "But you will be busy because I want you to do something for me."
"Really?" she asks, her voice raising with obvious excitement.
I feign the same excitement and can only hope I pull it off correctly. "Really. Do you like games?"
"I love games."
"We have so much in common," she whispers. I swear she moves just that little bit closer to me, invading my beloved, personal, Roxanne-free space. Please make her move.
"You have no idea," I finally answer her, trying not to smirk at that. "I have a game for you, Roxanne, a very new game called What D'ya Mean? Wanna play?"
"She just nodded," Louis says from behind. "She's very enthusiastic about this game."
I ignore him; though I'm grateful, I'm just a little busy. "So, I'm gonna give you a clue about my life and you have to figure it out. Sound good?"
I give her my most convincing grin; it just screams 'excitement' with 'leave me alone' hidden underneath. You'd be a fool not to believe it. "Here it is: It's not the female population of Hogwarts that you have to worry about."
Silence. For about a minute. It's the longest it's ever been. "What do you mean?"
"That's the fun of the game, you have to figure it out." I push her backwards gently and lead her away. "The moment you figure it out, you let me know."
"And you'll be right here?"
"I'll be right here."
"What if you have to leave?"
"You'll find me," I promise her. "You always do."
I swear I'm holding back tears, more so when she tells me that's true. I concentrate on her, until I can no longer hear her muttering or her footsteps. In the few seconds it takes for her to disappear from my hearing range, Louis has figured out exactly what I meant.
"You're gay," he says, sounding quite shocked by that.
"You're quick," I reply.
"It took me a little longer than it should." I scoff. "I was thinking maybe it was due to the fact that you don't talk to people, that you were saying you won't be seeing anyone. But it was your tone that convinced me; I got a 'there's a reason you can't have me' vibe."
Yeah, she's my stalker and she's insane; it wouldn't happen if I were straight either. I roll my eyes and hold out my hand. "Right. Come here please." Louis takes my hand immediately and I pull him in front of me; he hits the bookshelf. "Sorry."
"Call us even."
I smirk. "I'm still not telling you my name." He says damn, I laugh. "You're gonna play lookout for me, Louis. Where's you're cousin?"
"By the librarian's desk," he says. "You know, she not bad once you get to know her. She must really like you if she's like this; she's usually -"
"I was going to say not as forceful or direct." He's being nice, of course he is; it's who he is and it's his cousin we're talking about. But I can so tell he wanted to say yes. I felt him tense; Lucy does that when she doesn't say something she wants to. Must be a family trait.
"I'm sorry, Louis, but this is the only Roxanne I've had the pleasure of meeting. She didn't talk to me at all until last year," I remind him. I lift my hand to his face, run my finger down until I feel his ear, then move closer. Let's see how he like it. "When she's gone and shes far enough away that she won't see us, we run."
"A little mean, don't you think?"
"She scares me. Help me."
"Okay," Louis murmurs. "But I have two things I wanna say first." I raise an eye-brow, even though he's in front and can't see me. "One, your breath is tickling my ear, and two, you smell like caramel. I love caramel."
And it's time to move back. Damn those desserts at lunch, which are always so good that I take more and eat them in lesson. They're just so delicious. I try to forget about the cakes and focus on his words. "You know for someone who proclaims himself to be an anti-social workaholic who can't handle a relationship, you sure do like to flirt."
"You called it flirting, I was just stating facts."
I glare. Damn him. He could have been, they were all true, but I know he wasn't. I could tell. "Stop watching me and be look out."
He laughs. "You did again. It's like your own little radar, you just know. So, you're really gay."
I feel for the desk and lower myself down, glad that I don't feel like I'm being watched anymore. "Yeah, so?"
"I'm just glad I know," he replies. I frown; I don't understand. I ask him what he means, feeling oddly cautious. "It's good to know you're in my league, is all."
Now I have to laugh. "In your dreams, Weasley."
"Whatever you say," Louis says in that quiet, flirty tone again. I hate that tone. "But fair warning, I've already told you that I'm the dreamer in the family, the one who spends most of his time in his own little world, and I have a vivid imagination."
The universe hates me and has an ally in Louis Weasley.
Ciaran: 1. Universe: 2.
That score will not last.
"I can't see her anymore," he says at last. Finally! I can get out of here and to Hufflepuff, where it's normal and sane (for me) and there are no Ravenclaws.
He passes me my bag and stick and takes my hand. "Explain," I demand, holding up are still joined hands. Why are they still joined? I'll find out.
"If I see her, do you want me to know exactly where you are so I can hide you quickly or do you just want to wander and hope she doesn't see you?"
I admit, I hold on a little tighter. He better not be smug about it, though I think he's not going to tell me that. "I'll accept this time. Go."
Chuckling (I hate it more than the tone), he leads the way, holding my hand behind his back so I'm right behind him. He stops every few seconds before he continues, which I can only guess is him checking she's nowhere near, but we make it out of the library without her seeing us. It doesn't take us long before we're at Hufflepuff and I open my mouth to say the password, but it's already opening.
"Hey, guys. I was just coming to find you," Lucy says. "Extra work in the library, Lewis?"
Louis makes a weird noise. I imagine smoke is coming out of his ears; it's a funny picture. "No, we were talking," he finally tells her.
"So nosey," I pretend to complain. I change the subject before he can tell her; she'll only use it to her advantage. Lucy has been hinting about things that should not be hinted about ever since she got the wrong idea about me liking Louis. Now she won't let it go. Apparently we're perfect for each other.
I don't see it... And I don't just mean that literally.
I can only imagine the horror I'd go through if she knew he was flirting with me. Oh, wait, 'stating facts'.
"So, Louis has to go now, I bet he's got homework to do."
"No, I'm mostly up-to-date, I can do the rest later," he says.
"Cool," Lucy replies way too enthusiastically. "Since Key has probably already told you he made you a part of our group, you should come in and hang out with us until dinner. You can even sit with us."
"You made me part of your group?" he asks. Damn, I did. He wasn't meant to know that. It sounded like it had been a group decision in the library. I hate you, Lucy. "I would love to."
He pulls me in and sits me down on the couch and he's on my left. I pretty much ignore any and all conversation until I hear my name, then my head snaps up.
"Are they -?" Jack's voice.
"Shush." Lucy's voice.
I'm not liking this. I only know that it's about Louis and me, so I focus on Louis and me. Then I know.
Ciaran: 1. Universe: 2.
Because he's sitting there outright laughing... And he's still holding my hand.
A/N: I hope you enjoyed this chapters. I admit, Ciaran's games are fun to write, especially this one with Roxanne. :)