It had been a few weeks since Fleur had started her new job and as she sat at the kitchen table in her flat she couldn’t help but smile at the thought that she would be in work again in a few hours.
“What are you smiling about?” Monique said curiously as she entered the kitchen and pulled out a bowl from the cupboard.
Fleur bit into the corner of her toast delicately. “I ‘ave work soon” she shrugged trying to stop her face from twisting into the crazy smile she had been wearing for the last hour.
Monique opened another cupboard and poured a muggle cereal into the bowl. “And you’re happy why?” The cupboard door slammed shut again as Monique opened the fridge from which she produced a bottle of milk. “You know most people don’t look forward to work.”
“Hmm, no reason” Fleur said but the smile had returned.
“Wouldn’t have anything to do with a certain Weasley would it?” Monique teased her before sitting down next to her.
"I don’t know what you are talking about” Fleur laughed evasively. Though it was true that her thoughts now were centered almost exclusively on Bill and she had spent the last few weeks getting to know him better. She had thought by now she would have become bored with him but she had found that he held her attention unlike any other man she had met before. “What are you doing today?” she asked Monique who had a rare day off.
“I’m meeting a few people for dinner and drinks later, you should come,” she suggested looking at Fleur beseechingly.
Fleur waved her off unconcernedly, “Non, no, I will be too tired after working all day, go enjoy yourself I’ll be here at ‘ome.”
Monique grimace, “Come on Fleur! You haven’t been out with us in absolutely ages. Just because you have a job doesn’t mean you don’t need a social life too. Why don’t you invite someone from work back for coffee or something?”
Fleur rolled her eyes, “I’m sure zee goblins would love that.”
“I’m being serious, it’s such a nice day.” Monique told her pointing her spoon at her threateningly and indicating towards the window where admittedly it was a gorgeous summer day.
“And I iz going to work, ‘ave fun later” she called over her shoulder as she headed towards the fireplace and in a flash of green she was gone.
Several long hours later Gringotts finally began to empty. Fleur didn’t think she had ever seen it so busy and hadn’t stopped all day. She was already doing overtime but she couldn’t help it she need to send off the report she had just completed on the effectiveness of probity probes. She was disappointed by the fact that she hadn’t been able to see Bill much today after flooing to his office they had both been too busy to say anything other than hi to each other all day. He had probably already left to go home by now. With a sigh she headed towards the front entrance of the bank intending to walk home with it being such a nice day.
She had barely made it down the front steps when she heard him calling her name. She couldn’t help the huge smile from appearing as he ran down to catch up with her “I wondered where you were when you didn’t come to my office to floo home.”
His long hair was especially disheveled today and had tangled slightly around his earring without him noticing. Fleur reached up and carefully separated them tucking the hair behind his ear as his breathing slowed, “I did not know if you would still be ‘ere. Besides I ‘ave to post this on my way home.”
“Do you want some company,” he asked her flashing his lopsided smile that she liked so much.
“That would be nice, thank you.” She blushed prettily and they fell in step towards the post office. They talked about work as Fleur picked an owl to deliver her report. She couldn’t believe how easy it was to talk to Bill it was how she would behave with Monique. As he walked her home she couldn’t help but watch him as he talked, his golden brown eyes were so light and the corners of them would scrunch up when he laughed there was something very attractive about it to her.
Fleur came to a reluctant halt outside her building, “This is me, thank you for walking me.”
Bill grinned at her leaning on the wall as she pulled her muggle key out of her bag, “No problem, I’ll see you tomorrow Fleur.”
The key clicked and Fleur began to head towards the stairs which would lead up to the flat smiling back at Bill in thanks when Monique’s words from this morning ran through her head. “Bill?” she called going back to the door just as he began walking away, he turned to look at her and before she could lose her nerve she asked him, “Do you want to come in? For coffee?”
Bill walked back towards her, “Yeah actually that would be great.”
She led him up the stairs and when they approached her front door she got her wand out opening it with two light taps on the wood.
“Oh Fleur, thank god you are home, what do you think Black or Blue?” they heard Monique before they saw her Fleur had turned to close the door and therefore missed Monique’s expression when she walked into the front room in her underwear holding up two different dresses. However she did hear her squeak and Fleur turned to see both Bill and Monique frozen in shock causing her to break into laughter. This seemed to help and Monique was first to recover, promptly running back towards her room.
Still laughing she shouted after her friend, “Bill is ‘ere, just letting you know een case anything embarrassing might happen.”
Bill settled himself on the sofa while Fleur went to the kitchen to grab them both a coffee thanking the muggles for inventing such a great machine. She was just taking the coffees back to the sofa when Monique reappeared in a large fluffy dressing gown. She looked at them incredulously, “Why didn’t I see that coming?”
“Fleur only invited me in at the door,” Bill shrugged accepting the mug from Fleur brushing her hands for slightly too long as he did. “You probably wouldn’t have had time to do anything about it anyway.”
Monique maturely stuck her tongue out of him in reply causing him to do the same back and Fleur interrupted what was sure to be an immature fight, “The blue one ees very nice Monique you should wear that.”
“Thanks chick,” Monique said sincerely before returning to her room to get ready again.
“Your English has improved so much this last few weeks,” Bill complimented her.
Fleur sighed thoughtfully, “Eet ees not as good as eet could be because of my accent but I cannot really do anything about that.”
“I reckon it’s spending time with me, i've basically been giving you English lessons.” Bill smirked at her and she laughed back.
“Perhaps I could give you French lessons in return,” she teased remembering the second day she had met him, “it might help you pronounce mottos better.”
“I’ll have you know that Latin is a dead language anyway and no amount of language lessons will help me understand it more.” Bill said mock seriously also laughing with her now.
It wasn’t long after Monique had left that the coffees were discarded and they moved on to drinking alcohol, Bill with firewhiskey curtesy of Monique and Fleur sticking to her favorite Daisyroot Draught. The topic soon turned from work to family and Fleur began to understand more about Bill’s family and was shocked that he had recently lost contact with one of his brothers. She could not think of not being able to talk to Bill. He asked her some questions about her own family and she felt herself opening up to him, “I do miss my family ‘orribly but we send each other Owls quite often. I also miss the warm weather I am sick of it raining in London I don’t have the wardrobe for eet.”
Bill laughed at that, “Why did you move away then?”
“I wanted my independence,” she admitted her finger twirling the rim of her glass, the floral liquor was filling her with confidence now. “After the tournament ma mamon et papa were quite overbearing and I wanted to prove to them that I could do something by myself. I didn’t like it very much to begin with.”
“And now?” Bill asked softly.
“I theenk I ‘ave a better reason to stay now,” Fleur admitted ducking her head.
Bill placed his drink down on the coffee table and put his hands under Fleur’s chin raising it slightly. Her breath quickened and she felt the butterflies in her stomach awaken.
There was a large crack and the moment had passed and they jumped apart in shock. Monique had appeared suddenly in front of them, “I’m here to prevent disaster, now you go home, you go to bed and I can go back to the bar.”
Fleur and Bill looked at her flabbergasted for a moment, “Oh for goodness sake” Monique laughed wondering how much of her vision had already happened and what exactly she had interrupted.
“And you drank the last of my firewhiskey bottles,” she said noticing the several discarded beer bottles and Fleur’s own liquor bottle being half empty. Grabbing Bill by his ear she got him up off the sofa.
“Ow!” he complained several times as she dragged him to the door as Fleur fell about in giggles. She couldn’t even bring herself to be angry at Monique for interrupting them, the sight of him being pulled along was too funny.
“Merlin, I hope you are sober enough to apparate.” She mumbled at him. “Come on I’ll side along you to the Burrow, say bye now.”
“Bye Fleur.” He called with a wink. She simply waved at him unable to talk through her laughter.
Authors note: Please bare in mind that I do not actually speak French so any translations are accidents but here's the French to English for this chapter: “ma mamon et papa” - my mum and dad.