Chapter 2 : Tête-à-tête
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Fleur de Lys
Fleur awoke to the shrill ringing of her alarm clock. She felt around lazily for the button and hit it roughly. The sharp noise ceased immediately and Fleur snapped open her dark blue eyes. The clock read 9:47 and Fleur’s eyes widened.
“Merde,” cursed Fleur under her breath — her appointment was at 10:00.
She pushed herself out from under the covers and in an attempt to get out of bed, fell onto the floor. Rubbing her hip, she dashed to the bathroom and turned on the shower.
After showering quickly and using a drying spell on her long, blonde hair, Fleur stood in her closet contemplating on what to wear. She had to look intelligent and serious. What did one even wear to look intelligent and serious? Fleur looked through all her robes and finally decided on a pair of ivory silk robes. She pulled them off their hanger and dressed quickly.
Checking her wristwatch, she saw that it was 9:55. Fleur cursed again under her breath and rushed to the bathroom and observed herself in her bathroom mirror. She looked disheveled and sighed, pulling her hair into a neat ponytail at the nape of her neck. She pinched the apples of her cheeks and returned to her bedroom to get her oversized leather clutch and wand. She paused in the doorway of her closet, contemplating on what shoes to wear. She spotted the pristine, unopened white box that held the emerald green high-heeled shoes and removed the shoes from their tissue paper and slipped them on quickly. She looked down at them, they were just what she needed to feel better.
Flicking her wand, the lights in her apartment went out and she disapparated from the apartment with a faint pop.
Fleur pushed open the glass doors of Gringotts and rushed into the lobby. Her gold wristwatch read 10:06 and she hurried to the nearest open counter.
“’Ello, Meester…” Fleur leaned forward across the counter to read the goblin’s nametag. “Gryp… ’on.” Fleur paused slightly, rummaging around in her clutch for her white appointment card. She pulled it out triumphantly and placed it on the mahogany counter. “I ’ave an appointment at ten o’clock.”
The goblin, Gryphon, read the card with narrowed eyes. “Right then, follow me.”
Fleur hurried after the goblin across the lobby and down the hall to a large staircase. They climbed the stairs in silence and upon reaching the top floor, the goblin passed numerous doors and stopped in front of a mahogany door that was slightly ajar. The goblin knocked once and entered. “Your client is here for your meeting, Mister Weasley.”
Fleur couldn’t hear what the man had replied but the goblin nodded and departed before Fleur could ask anything. She took a deep breath and knocked once.
“You may come in.” The voice was male and surprisingly familiar although she couldn’t quite place it.
Fleur frowned and pushed open the door hesitantly. She looked into the office only to see the man from the café coming toward her, a hand outstretched. Fleur’s blue eyes widened and the man’s hand fell back to his side.
The man averted his eyes from her face. “Bill Weasley. I’m your financial advisor.” He didn't make eye contact, instead his eyes settled on Fleur's shoes.
Fleur stood rooted in her emerald green heels at the threshold. “Fleur Delacour.”
“Please, do sit down,” said Bill, running a hand through his auburn-coloured hair. He sat down quickly and opened a file, marking a sheet of paper with his quill.
Fleur sat down shakily. She couldn’t believe that she had spilled all her problems to someone she thought was a stranger, but was really her financial advisor. She cringed at the memory of pouring out all her problems to this man.
“I’ve looked at your financial statements and the bank can grant you…”
Fleur couldn’t focus on what the man — Bill, was saying at all. She had whined to him like a typical damsel in distress and he knew everything. Fleur hoped this was all a nightmare. She pinched herself. No, it was completely real.
Thankfully, Bill hadn't mentioned anything. Fleur breathed deeply and arranged herself more comfortably on the chair. Everything was fine, she thought, trying to console herself.
“Miss Delacour? Miss Delacour?” Bill was looking at her.
Fleur snapped out of her reverie to see Bill looking at her oddly. Merde.
“Pardon,” said Fleur, flustered.
“No problem,” said Bill kindly. “The date has been moved to a month from now. Is that all right?”
“Yes,” said Fleur. “Eet ees all right. Thank you, Meester Weeslee.” She extended her hand towards Bill and he shook it, a hint of a smile playing at his lips. Fleur inwardly cursed herself for mispronouncing his name. Why did the Eenglish have to have such hard names to pronounce?
“It was my pleasure. Have a good day, Miss Delacour,” replied Bill.
Fleur walked out of Bill’s office and sighed in relief. She exited the same way that she had come but paused at the table near the glass doors. There were application forms for secretaries at Gringotts. Fleur took a sheet and pushed through the doors.
She walked down the steps quickly then disapparated to Muggle London. Fleur apparated to one of the high streets and passed the small designer shops but didn’t stop once to go inside. She could not buy anything.
She walked happily down the street, oblivious to everything until out of the corner of her eye, she spotted a flash of blue. She stopped dead in her tracks and stared at the patent-leather blue Mary Janes in the window.
She had to have more willpower than this. They were just shoes… just gorgeous powder blue patent-leather Mary Janes. She forced herself to walk away but she just couldn’t. She walked into the shop and asked saleslady for a size 7. The saleslady handed her the white box with black writing and Fleur tried them on daintily. They were a perfect fit.
“Excuse me, ’ow much are ze shoes?” asked Fleur.
“£ 385,’ replied the saleslady.
Fleur looked down at the shoes. They were expensive, but you couldn't put a price tag on perfect shoes, Fleur decided finally. “I’ll take ’zem.”
“Very well, I’ll ring them up for you,” said the saleslady.
Fleur slipped back on her emerald green heels and walked towards the counter.
Fleur handed the saleslady her emergencies-only credit card that her parents had given her in case she ever found herself unable to use Wizard money. Fleur felt guilty for about three seconds while the saleslady ran her card. But all Fleur’s guilty feelings vanished when the saleslady handed her the white carrier bag.
Author’s Note Is it cliché? I haven't really gotten into the plot yet, but it's coming. By the way, thank you all for reading... the fact that you just clicked on this story is amazing because I know my summary's rubbish. I really appreciate everyone's encouragment from the first chapter!
Last chapter soliloquy suggested I make a list of the French words in English for everyone who didn't understand. I've edited the last chapter which had more French to contain a Glossary so you guys can check that out. This chapter's Glossary is rather pitiful... one word and it's a swear word. Lovely.
Merde — Shit
Thank you all for reading!
chapter image by Camila
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