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Chapter 5 : Chapter 5- Not A Date
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It had been the best week in a long time for me having Gillian around. It was nice to have a friend even though I wanted much more. Sometimes when I looked at her I could see this pain in her eyes; like she had been through things I couldn’t even fathom and I wanted to comfort her but I couldn’t until she opened up and let me. She was beautiful mystery to me and I was okay with that. Harry, Ron, and Hermione all asked about her at work; I’m sure Hermione was a bit upset Gillian had never taken her up on her offer but Hermione didn’t show it she just seemed concerned for the girl I couldn’t blame her I was too. I had noticed it when she was working that first week she nervously shifted her weight when she spoke and she didn’t look anyone in the eye; her eyes constantly shifted to doors and entry ways when anyone was entering or exiting and she would study people for a second or so before returning to whatever she had been doing. It was like she was looking for someone; some ghost from her past. I of course had noticed the scars too although she tried to cover them more than tanks she wore a t-shirt or long sleeve tee, the same clothes over and over she wouldn’t allow me to buy her new ones. If I came up behind her she screamed and would jump and merlin forbid I tried to have any contact with her like a hug she would break down in tears and start shaking violently sobbing. She seemed terribly haunted; some nights she would wake me screaming and I would go to her room to see her asleep lost in some terrible nightmare. Yet her demons were her’s alone to battle until she allowed someone else to stand beside her and help. I was sitting at my desk scribbling away on some paperwork when Harry took the seat across from me.
“Something on your mind?” he asked.
Harry’s perceptiveness could catch me off guard sometimes so I just sat silently.
“What’s going on with her?’ he asked more pointedly.
“I honestly don’t know I wish I did; there’s something most likely a lot she’s just not ready to tell. She screams at night more often than not obviously having horrid nightmares, some days she just picks at her food, she is constantly fidgeting and darting her eyes to doors and entrances scanning people, and sometimes when I look at her in her eyes there’s something a hurt a pain I can’t even describe.” I sighed.
“She’s obviously been through a lot and the only thing anyone can do is give her time.”
“I just want to help her to comfort her and she won’t let me. We’re going to dinner tonight hopefully I can prove to her she can trust me.”
“Oh a date finally?”
“It’s not a date,” I replied, “its two friends going to dinner I offered to pay for.”
Harry kind of snorted, “Sounds like a date to me.”
“It’s not a date,” I repeated.
Harry shrugged, “Whatever you say Draco.”
I shook my head as Harry walked away and mumbled to myself, “It’s not a date, trust me I wish more than anything it was.”
After work I headed home to change and then to go get Gill when her shift ended in an hour; I didn’t drive the car Kye was slowly teaching me but I didn’t quite have it yet. On more than one occasion I wanted to just enchant the damn thing but that was against the law; unless you are marrying a muggle they can never know about the wizarding world and then if they leave you because you are a wizard/witch you must do a memory charm on them and end the relationship. I know the rules are to protect our world but right now they were frustrating me to no end. Kye was ready as soon as I was to drive into London and get her. She got in the car smiling and then frowned.
“I can’t go to dinner in my work clothes.”
“No you can’t which is why we’re going to stop and get you clothes on the way.”
She frowned even more, “I feel scammed.”
“You always tell me no I am just trying to help you out,” I smiled.
She sighed and I knew it was the sigh that meant she had given in, “Fine but only one outfit.”
“And shoes,” this time I smirked.
She laughed, “Fine whatever if it will get you to stop bugging me.”
She playfully shoved me, “Owe be careful I’m fragile.”
I made big wide eyes and she just huffed at me, “Oh yeah so fragile.”
She rolled her eyes, crossed her arms, and stared out the car window; pretending to be angry with me so I imitated her. After a few minutes she gave in and turned back to face me.
“Fine I’m sorry,” she was being sarcastic.
“Apology accepted,” I smirked at her again.
Kye pulled into the parking lot of a large shopping center and dropped Gill and I by the door promising to be back in an hour so we wouldn’t be late for the reservations. The first store we went into she found a pair of cage style black leather heels she loved but couldn’t find anything she liked to go with them so we went to another one and another and another. After forty five minutes she finally found a knee length spaghetti strap dress she liked and that was in whatever price point she had set in her head. She went into a changing room after paying and came out looking drop dead gorgeous even with the back pack throwing off the whole elegant look. She had her hair up in an intentionally messy bun with hair framing her face and the dress fit her perfectly the heels brought her up so she was only about 3 inches shorter than me instead of the usual 5. I smiled at her and she squirmed a little.
“I haven’t worn a dress in ages.”
“Well you look great, come one before Kye thinks we got lost.” I was still smiling.
We got back in the car and she went into the front pouch of her back pack she pulled out an emerald and diamond ring with a yellow gold band and slid it on her finger and then put on a white gold necklace that had five diamonds in an ‘S’ pattern.
“The ring was my mothers and the necklace is the last birthday present she ever got me,” she looked like she may cry.
I smiled, “They’re beautiful.”
She relaxed and we spent the rest of the ride in what she called ‘comfortable silence.’ The restaurant I had chosen was famous for its seafood; I had picked it because I remember her once saying her favorite food was lobster. We arrived and were seated at a table with a deep burgundy table cloth that was next to a large salt water fish tank. Small colorful fish darted in an out of the coral reef in the large tank, a small cat shark weaved about the tank, and a snowflake moray eel poked its head out from crevices in the live rock. (I had learned all these names and things from various television programs I had watched, muggle animals were not my specialty but she loved them so I was learning as much as possible.) She was mesmerized by the tank smiling as the fish went about their lives as if we were not even there. The waiter took our drink orders before leaving us to look over the menus. She told me to pick an appetizer so I chose crab and lobster stuff mushrooms; she nodded approving my decision and I let out a sigh of relief. When the waiter returned and took our appetizer order I noticed him staring at her, and then he started flirting with her like I wasn’t even there. I rolled my eyes but kept my mouth shut after all this wasn’t a date I reminded myself. I’d just make the guy feel like a douche later when I paid for this expensive meal in cash.
“Draco everything here is so expensive,” she muttered after the waiter left.
“Get your new boyfriend to get us a discount,” I smirked.
She rolled her eyes, “Don’t be an ass I wouldn’t date him.”
I just laughed, “Just order what you want.”
“Are you jealous?” she eyed me.
“Jealous of what? The waiter,” I chuckled, “Nothing to be jealous of we’re just friends, but for the record you are coming back to my house tonight.”
She raised her eyebrows at me but then laughed, “You do have a point there.”
When the waiter returned to take our orders for dinner he was being quite blatant with his advances but I just bit my tongue; she however finally got annoyed.
“Do you not see I am out with someone?” she snapped.
He looked at me, “It doesn’t seem like you two are involved.”
“And how would you know?”
“You two aren’t acting like a couple I see dozens of couples in here every night; I know what a couple looks like.”
“It’s rude to just assume something like that maybe we’re just private people who don’t want to be all over in each other in public,” she was quite annoyed with the waiter’s arrogance.
Before it turned into an all-out brawl I stepped in, “Could you just put our dinner orders in mate?”
He shrugged, “Yeah I’ll go do that.”
After he walked away I looked at her, “He’s gonna spit in our food now you realize that?”
She shrugged and laughed, “I’ll inspect my lobster with seafood stuffing thoroughly before devouring it.”
I just shook my head at her, “You sure are of one of kind.”
She nodded, “Yepp no one else like me.”
She couldn’t know how truthful that was because to me there was no one else like her; no one else who could make me feel like she did. It was bothering me the waiter said we didn’t look like a couple and although I was trying to push it aside it kept gnawing at me. Why didn’t we look like we were together? I mean we weren’t but how could someone outside just assume much less know that. She was studying the aquarium again as I studied her.
“Isn’t it kind of cruel?” she suddenly asked.
“Is what kind of cruel?”
“Having live fish in an aquarium in a seafood restaurant,” she replied.
I couldn’t help but laugh, “Yeah I guess it is, and hopefully we’re not enjoying anyone’s siblings tonight.”
She giggled, “If any of the fish start staring at us in horror I guess we’ll know.”
I rolled my eyes, “If any of the fish start staring at us in horror you’ll snap a pick and put in on your facepage or whatever for your friends in the States to laugh at.”
She nodded, “Yeah I would; that reminds me why don’t you have one everyone has one except you.”
“I don’t have time or enough stalkers to upload my life onto that damn computer.”
She flinched at the word ‘stalker’ and didn’t seem convinced with my explanation; then again she never did it was difficult always coming up with excuses as to why I didn’t have or do certain muggle things or why I didn’t know certain things, stupid wizarding laws. I accepted some of her explanations with reserve too though so I guess we were about even in the secrets department.
The rest of our ‘not date’ went smoothly the waiter kept his mouth shut and we had a good time enjoying the food, each other’s company, and a healthy dose of alcohol. By the time we were ready to leave she was obviously mildly intoxicated so I put my arm around her shoulders to steady her and I winked at the waiter as I did so he just glared at me and went back to clearing the plates. In all actuality I was amazed she was letting me touch her without having a breakdown; it must be the alcohol. Usually I had to be careful as to not even put a hand on her back or it would send her back in time; she never had to say a word the way her eyes glazed over and she didn’t seem to see anything around her I could tell that whatever kind of attack she was having she wasn’t in the present time I wasn’t there someone else was someone who had hurt her. I helped her back into the car and she just giggled the whole way home. I helped her upstairs and into her room helping her get her shoes off and then get into bed and under the comforter.
“I can’t sleep in thisssssss,” she slurred.
“You’ll be fine see you in the morning.”
“Dracooooooo,” she whined.
“Whining is not attractive.”
“You are though,” she smiled.
I just shook my head, “Just get some sleep.”
She opened her mouth again but I guess whatever sober part of her was still inside told her to shut up because she closed it.
“Good night Gill.”
“Good night Draco.”
I closed her door and walked back to my room; I stripped and showered before climbing into my own bed wishing desperately I was in hers. I didn’t know how alcohol would affect her nightmares so I stayed up for several hours to see if she started screaming but she didn’t and I eventually drifted off to sleep.
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