Chapter 37 : Of Christmas and Vicious Circles.
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Oh, another excellent chapter... It might be my favorite. Simply because of the 'vicious circle' part of that. :D That's assured to crack you up, guys. Promise.
All proper young ladies will show the proper amount of excitement during holidays.
“Wake up! Come on! Get up! Wake up!”
Someone is shaking me. Vigorously. Someone is shaking me, yelling in my face, and trying their hardest to wake me up.
Someone with a death sentence.
I close my eyes tight. Maybe if I lay here and don’t move, barely breathing, they’ll think I’m dead and go away. That seems like a good idea. Let’s try that.
Barely two seconds pass before someone starts shaking me again. “Come on!” they cry out. It’s too early and I’m too asleep to recognize the voice, but it’s someone I now hate. That I know for sure. “Please, wake up! It’s important! Wake up! Wake up!”
I let out a low groan. “What?” I snap at the person, pulling myself up so I can glare at whoever it is.
Since I’m avoiding Shell Cottage for Christmas holidays- with the ever so convenient excuse that I don’t want to get in the way of the wedding plans or distract Victoire from the work she has to do- I’m spending the time at the Potter home, 12 Grimmauld Place. The downside to avoiding my sister? My choices in bedrooms included my future brother-in-law’s old room, complete with the sickening musty smell boys’ rooms always seem to have, the sitting room where I would never get to sleep in past nine, and Lily’s bedroom, where my little cousin is apt to keep me awake with her talk show blabber until the wee hours of the morning. None of them are good options, but they’re much better than staying home with Bride-e-mort, as she’s been un-affectionately dubbed by James.
I’ve chosen Lily’s bedroom, which happens to be right next to James'. Therefore, when I open my eyes and see the tall boy perched on my bed and his brown eyes glinting cheerfully at me, I’m not that surprised. James is a big fan of Christmas. And today, you see, is Christmas.
“Happy Christmas, Nicky!”
Rubbing my eyes, I nod in James’ direction. “Happy Christmas, arsehole.”
Did I ever mention that I absolutely hate Christmas at the Burrow?
I really do. It begins at six in the morning, every year, and that means I’m yanked from my bed from someone- be it my little brother if I’m at home, or an obnoxious raven-haired cousin if I’m at the Potters’- and dragged to my grandparents’ home to celebrate Christmas. Once we all arrive, we’re forced to wait to open our Christmas presents while we eat a “peaceful” breakfast- oh, what a joke that is. Do you know how impossible it is to have a peaceful breakfast when there are over thirty people all sitting together at a not-so large table? Incredibly impossible.
For today’s breakfast, I was jammed between James and Freddie. Those boys are comparable to six year olds on Christmas, and I was two steps away from stabbing myself in the heart with a butter knife the entire time. They’re exasperating. I love them, but they drive me insane. Luckily, Lily was seated across from me from six in the morning until noon, and I had someone with whom I could roll my eyes and bury my face in my hands for six entire hours. Because yes, ladies and gentleman, Christmas breakfast at the Weasley house takes six hours. Six. Fucking. Hours.
This is exactly how these six hour breakfasts go: first, Molly squeals when someone got food in her hair.
Then, Lucy giggles at her sister as she freaks out over the lump of treacle or porridge in her perfect locks.
Then, Aunt Audrey scolds Molly for throwing a fit at the breakfast table.
Then, Uncle Percy scolds Lucy for laughing at her sister.
Then, Roxanne and Fred ever so subtly fling more spoons full of treacle and porridge in Molly’s direction.
Then, Uncle George laughs and gives his children a thumbs up from the other end of the table.
Then, Aunt Angelina smacks him for approving of their behavior, even though she’s laughing.
Then, Hugo complains that everyone is interrupting his peaceful breakfast.
Then, Aunt Hermione tries her hardest to distract everyone from Molly’s spaz attack by changing the topic to the rights of some magical creature.
Then, Uncle Harry swiftly changes the topic to Quidditch.
Then, Uncle Charlie boasts about the latest win of Romania’s new Quidditch team.
Then, Daddy counters that with a reminder of how excellent Puddlemere United is doing this year.
Then, Louis makes a quiet addition to the discussion about the season of the Chudley Cannons, which he barely knows anything about.
Then, Albus chortles and insults the Chudley Cannons, because everyone knows he prefers Puddlemere.
Then, Uncle Ron’s face turns bright red and he prepares to scold his nephew for insulting his favorite team.
Then, Aunt Ginny shoots her brother a death glare to silence him.
Then, James flings a spoonful of an unidentified substance towards Victoire, destroying any chance of conversation.
Then, Victoire shrieks horrifically loud, and when Teddy tries to comfort her, she only screeches louder.
Then, Rose makes that annoyed noise and sticks her nose up in the air.
Then, Rolf and Luna Scamander ponder if there is some kind of creature invading the minds of all of us to make us act so crazy.
Then, Maman sighs in this dramatic way, like she always does whenever one of the Scamanders speaks.
Then, I roll my eyes across the table at Lily.
Then, Molly squeals again, and the vicious circle continues.
This happens every fucking year.
Please, somebody, hex me. Stun me. Avada Kedavra me. Just take away my ability to know what’s going on in my surroundings, I’m begging you! I can’t take this anymore. I wish I was adopted into a nice normal family. Like the Longbottoms- I could be a Longbottom! Oh, wait. No, I don’t like plants. Okay, I could be a Finnegan! Well, maybe not. Owen and Delaney are too whiny. I could be a Jordan! That would work. Remy is obnoxious as hell, but at least he’s not whiny and he doesn’t like plants. Yep, that’s it. I’ll talk to Uncle Lee and Aunt Katie when they come for Christmas dinner. I’m sure they’d love to adopt me. I always hear Aunt Katie talk about how she wants a daughter to play Quidditch with her.
Anyway! Now, breakfast is over. It’s finally, six hours later, time for opening all of our Christmas presents. This means that all of us cram into the tiny sitting room, and all of that compressed body heat makes the room grow overwhelmingly stifling. It’s just a great way to spend Christmas morning, afternoon, and night. Because, yes, we’ll be here until Christmas is officially over.
I’m, once again, in between James and Fred. It’s one of the first times it’s been the three of us side by side since Penelope and Holden, along with the majority of my Quidditch team, joined our cluster of friends. James is sprawled out next to me, his arm hanging lazily around my shoulders, and Freddie is leaning against my shoulder, his head resting there. It’s one of those nostalgic moments. We haven’t been this way in so long. If I wasn’t distracted by Hugo, Lucy, Louis, and Lily distributing presents across the house, I might tear up a little. Things have changed so much since the first of September. Everything has changed.
With things with Lorcan turning out the way they have, I’m not so sure if I’m happy about that. My head is too muddled to know if I’m happy or not- with anything.
Speaking of Lorcan, he’s just now entering the sitting room. For once, he doesn’t avoid my eyes when he notices me looking at him, and he heads towards the empty spot next to Fred, dropping down on the ground. With a quick wave, he grins. “Wotcher, Dom,” he says.
I freeze, staring back silently at Lorcan. His grey eyes are lit up and friendly, nothing like the stones I’ve encountered over the past few months, and for a second, I feel like everything is back to normal. Like he’s my best mate again. Like we’re about to discuss pranks and Quidditch and our insane family members. Like I never picked Holden Wood over him.
Remember how I said I only felt really alive whenever Holden’s perfect brown eyes were locked on mine?
Well, apparently, I feel rather alive whenever I’m looking at Lorcan and he’s grinning at me like this, too.
Wonderful. That really helps the situation.
“Erm,” I glance down at the floor. It takes me a second to spit out a real response, and I swear, I’m having déjà vu. I haven’t stuttered while talking to Lorcan in so long. Since before everything. Before the big Veritaserum incident. This cannot be happening. I’m as obvious as I was before September even happened. James and Fred are never going to leave me alone now! “H-h-hi, Lorc.”
As Lorcan opens his mouth to speak to me again, my mother lets out an excited shriek, and he closes his mouth immediately. Everyone looks around for the source, but I know it’s Maman. Sure, I might be assuming that it was her, seeing as there are about ninety women all crammed into the sitting room right now capable of making that same shriek, but I know it’s Maman. There’s something different about hearing the screech of your mother. You can always tell when it’s her. It’s like an instinct.
The blonde woman is on her feet, flying towards the doorway of the sitting room in a cloud of blue velvet- dear Merlin, that must be an uncomfortable dress to be in in such an overheated room- and perfectly coiffed curls. She throws her arms around a tall man with dark brown hair, kissing both of his cheeks and murmuring ecstatically in French. Then, she moves from the man, who shifts awkwardly after parting from Fleur, to the woman standing next to him, whose bright red lipstick pops against her dark skin and who excitedly responds to Maman’s French in a horrible accent. When the couple parts and Maman pushes gently past them to hug the two dark-haired teenagers standing behind them, realization hits me.
Maman is growing so excited over the arrival of Oliver and Cecilia Wood, along with their two children, Scarlett and Holden. I’ve never seen my mother so thrilled to see a group of people.
“Oh ’Olden, you look so ’andsome!” she coos, her French accent thicker than usual, and leans forward to kiss my poor boyfriend on both cheeks.
As we all know, Fleur adores Holden, and she makes this very clear when she tucks her arm under his and pulls him into the room. She doesn’t do that too often. She leaves Cecilia, one of the few friends my mother really has, and the rest of the Woods in the entryway and tugs Holden along with her. The poor bloke doesn’t have time to take off his cloak, and I give him an apologetic smile from where I’m sitting.
“Look, Beel! Your favorite student.”
Pretty much everyone under the age of seventeen sitting in the room coughs or makes some form of gesture towards Fleur, who ignores it all and obviously doesn’t remember that my poor father teaches all of her nieces and nephews, not to mention two of his children. She’s too busy pulling my boyfriend along behind her. The least she could do is let him join me on the floor with James and Fred.
Most people seem frightened in the presence of my overzealously proper mother, but he looks rather pleased. He seems to almost enjoy the way she’s acting. Or, if not enjoying it, he’s at least been prepared for it. As if he anticipated her to be so thrilled by his presence. That’s… odd. Very odd. How can you prepare to be attacked by a crazy Frenchwoman? And he’s not conceited enough to think everyone he meets is going to be enthusiastic about it. So, this makes absolutely no sense. How weird.
While the presents are still being distributed, my mother finally releases Holden’s arm and allows him to join his girlfriend. He slides onto the ground behind me, wrapping his arms around my waist.
Lorcan pointedly looks away. So does James, who so obviously misses Penelope.
“Merry Christmas, love,” he whispers into my ear, kissing my cheek.
Maman claps her hands from across the room. “I’m so ’appy you found ’Olden, Dominique!” she cries out, and then she winks at Holden.
Erm, what? My mother just winked?
Instead of being freaked out, he only laughs at my insane mother. “I’m happy she found me too, Madame Weasley,” he responds.
I merely blink. Weirdest situation ever. My mother is actually happy. And she winked. My mother, Madame Ladylike Rulebook-Worshipper, who would win the award for having the biggest stick in the world shoved up her arse, winked. And she’s laughing. All because of… Holden? Does she really like him that much? Creepy. I don’t think I like this.
“’E ’as changed ’er for ze better,” my mother comments absently to Cecilia, who is now perched on a dining chair next to Fleur. She points towards me, as if I can’t hear her, probably expecting me to be paying attention to Lily and Hugo as they, being the youngest, unwrap all of their presents first. She’s a moron if she thinks I’m not listening to every word. “She ’as even began to dress like a proper lady. No ’oles een ’er clothes!”
Glancing down at what I put on this morning, I notice I’m wearing the outfit I sported at Fred’s birthday party. More and more, I’ve been dressing like this: jeans without holes that aren’t nearly as comfortable, sweaters that hug my body way too tightly, blouses with the buttons actually buttoned, and I even wear shoes. All along, I’ve been doing this for Holden’s sake, thinking he would prefer his girlfriend dressed properly. Hearing that in my thoughts makes me want to scream- properly!? Who the fuck am I?
I push that thought out of my mind, however. It’s Christmas. I can’t worry about things like that now.
“And she ’asn’t been een detention for months!” Fleur adds, reminding me again of another change I’ve gone through.
Sure, it’s a good thing that I’m not being sent to detention left and right. Most people would assume it’s good that I’ve stopped pranking. Maybe James, Fred, and I have learned the wrongness of our ways. But no. I’ve stopped being sent to detention because my boyfriend is a prefect, and he always finds a way to get me out of it. Before, I wouldn’t let Lorcan try to save us from detention. He offered countless times, but I wore detention like a badge of honor. Now, it shames me to think that the girlfriend of the perfect Holden Wood is constantly in trouble with her professors.
Oh, fuck. Oh, shit, fuck, damn, and every other curse word in the world.
Who am I?
Okay, guys. Let's go.
Holden or Lorcan!?
Leave it in your review. I'm going to start counting my votes for Lorcan and my votes for Holden. :) I want to see how good of a job I've done persuading some of you to fall for Holden, and how many of you have stuck with Lorcan since the beginning!
Sneak peak time, now. After I drop my bomb of the day on you.
From Chapter Thirty-Eight: Of Brides and Gwenog-Victoire gently pulls her arm around my shoulders again, leaning her head against my shoulder- she’s always been shorter than me, since I was six- and holding me close to her side. “One day, you’ll be the one in white, Dom,” Victoire tells me after a lengthy moment of silence between the two of us. This is such a weird thing for us, but for some reason, I’m perfectly okay with standing here with my sister, the flawless, ladylike sister I normally cannot stand.
“I know,” I respond, smiling with Victoire. Even I, queen of the unconventional, can’t help but imagine how my own wedding is going to be. Even I, crazily unladylike Dominique Weasley, wants to get married. It must be a Weasley thing. We’re big on weddings. Very chaotic events, weddings. “I can’t wait, really.”
Now, don't forget! Holden or Lorcan!
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