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Chapter 2 : bowties.
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"Percy," Bill said, his tone caring yet bored, "I told you I would find you a date for tonight."
"Fantastic." Percy replied, his rather large nose deep into a book that appeared to be thicker than him.
"Percy, I'm serious now, you have to show up! You can't just blow it off to spend time with Inspector Lestrudel!" he said older-brother like, and since Bill was the OWA (Oldest Weasley Available) he assumed the higher authority.
"Lestrade," sighed Percy, and sighed at the thought of his greying cat, who was the reason Percy had large scratches down his arms. "Not. Interested. I'm making pudding tonight, and I want to be alone."
Bill stirred his coffee. "Nope. You can't back out of this one. She's a friend of Fleur's -- did you hear, Fleur got promoted, she's Gringott's Vice President?"
"How interesting." Percy said with a yawn.
Bill rolled his eyes and continued. "And Vic is getting to that ghastly age now, but that's okay, and Fleur's friend Camille is the one I set you up with, she's really rich--"
"She's rich?" Percy's grey-brown eyes grew so wide that they appeared to burst out of their sockets. The effect was even more pronounced because his large glasses were magnetising, so he appeared very owl-like.
Percy hungrily dug into his eggs. Bill, who, believe it or not, ate more than Percy, was already finished.
"Psh, yeah." Bill said laughingly. Leave it to Percy to be obsessed with money, he thought. "She's only the daughter of a successful French investor."
Percy groaned and shook at least two pounds of salt on his hashbrowns. "So she's French?"
"Is that a problem?"
"Nope, they do know how to party, those French people."
"Anything else?" the blonde waitress asked, her bushy hair folded into a messy braid. She rolled her eyes when she saw Percy. "Oh, hello, pal."
"Hey, mate." Percy said reluctantly.
"Hi, Penelope," Bill said. "I'm trying to get Percy a date, let's just see if anyone will actually like him.."
Penelope snorted as Percy suddenly appeared interested in his napkin. "Highly improbable, but not impossible." she said with a smirk, and left to go wait on other tables.
"Why do we have to go here?" Percy complained, the tips of his ears still faintly pink. "She's my ex! It's still really awkward!" he scooped up more breakfast potatoes drizzled in ketchup.
"Everything's awkward when it comes to you," Bill said, inspecting his watch. "Whoops, time to go!"
"Wait! I don't know where to meet or when!" Percy flailed his long arms, now looking like some sort of windmill wearing a jumper.
"Six o' clock, the Bronzed Knut."
"A blind date at a fancy restaurant? Absolutely fantastic!" Percy said sarcastically.
"She's pretty, I swear!" Bill yelled, his auburn ponytail shining in the sunlight before disappearing.
"That's what they all say." Percy said to absolutely no one. "Then they turn out to be creepy."
I am writing you because I am in a ghastly situation. I have a blind date in six hours, precisely, and she's French. You see, I don't know any French, only Latin. Well, Latin is a dead language, and that doesn't help in the slightest bit. Can you just help me out a bit? Come to my flat, I have food if you want. The bottom line is, I haven't had a date in the longest time, my only friend is my ex-girlfriend, and it's been ages since I've done anything considered "fun".
Come if you can, knock precisely three times. Not four, not two, but three. Thanks a bunch,
Percy tied the note to his owl, River, and threw it out of his window, ignoring the loud thump five stories down.
He inspected his flat, and noted that it was clearly looking better than a week ago, when his family was over. There were considerably less cats, as he gave them all to the smelly little shop in Diagon Alley -- well, all of the cats except Sherlock and Watson, because he felt compelled to keep them together at all costs (not like he'd tell anyone that). He had cleaned the entire place, and organised all of his technology. Percy was quite proud of his knowledge of cleaning spells, for that, besides sarcasm, were pretty much his only talents.
Three knocks sounded on the door, and Percy darted over as quick as he could manage.
"Hello," he said quickly to Wood, who in turn dashed passed him and went straight to the food. "Oh, you've brought.. guests,"
"Ugh, you again," Percy groaned, as Penelope Clearwater rolled her eyes at him. She was an expert at eye rolling, he noted with annoyance, but felt a bit happy about her appearance anyway.
"I've brought along a mate," she said, her blue eyes dancing with a slight shade of amusement.
"And he is?" Percy asked, and grimaced at the noise of Oliver's loud chewing noises. Too bad that he thinks those are beef burgers, Percy thought with glee.
"Rolf Scamander." Penelope's light eyebrows twitched as Percy was still not letting her into his flat.
Rolf, who was tall, thin, and had long sideburns and sticky-uppy hair, nodded at Percy, but that wasn't enough. "I need details, woman! Who is he? He could be a murderer, for all we know! I'm not going to just let some random bloke in my palace!" Percy vaguely waved a skinny hand at his two-room flat.
"I swear, you are a psychopath," Penelope said dryly, trying to fight her way through, but Percy considered the truth in her words.
"DETAILS." Percy said through gritted teeth, and Penelope sighed with annoyance, and mumbled loudly, "How did I resist killing you?"
"Weeeellll, my name is Rolf," Rolf said, but Percy cut him off.
"No need to hear it from you, Butterscotch. Pen will tell me if you're not a murderer."
"Rolf Scamander. Thirty-two years old. Ravenclaw, three years ahead of me. Works for the Ministry in their plant division. Has lots of girl problems. Knows French. Grandfather was a famous hippie-wizard. Wrote Magical Beasts and Where to Find Them."
"HA-ha!" Percy exclaimed, a manic smile almost touching his reddish-brown hair. "Pen Clearwater, you are a DREAM!"
"Er, thanks?" Penelope was now in the process of shoving Percy in order to enter his 'palace'.
"And you, Butterscotch, Scotty, Plant-Boy, whatever, will be very helpful."
"Blimey, that's all I say?" Percy said over fresh huckleberry pudding. "vous avez de jolis yeux?"
"Yeah, that means 'you have pretty eyes'." Rolf said, hungrily digging in.
"Vous avez de jolis yeux." Oliver said, and Penelope blushed and looked mushily at him.
"Oi, get a room," Percy said, earning him a rude gesture from Penelope.
"Perce, remember that one French kid in our year?" Oliver asked, his mouth still full of supposed burgers.
"Yeah, he told me the best compliment to tell a girl was 'vous vendez votre corps pour de l'argent'."
Rolf smiled and caught Oliver's eye. "Oh, mate, that's lovely."
"I'm not your mate yet," Percy snapped. "I still don't know if you're okay." he paused, and added, "Thank you, Oliver, the date will be fantastic."
"Lunch break is over," Penelope said, glancing at Rolf. "You two have to go."
Oliver shrugged. "I'm a Quiddich player! I have no schedule!"
Penelope checked her watch. "I think you two have to go."
"Why?" Oliver complained.
"Look, Olive, do you really want to watch me pick out clothes for Percy's date? Or do you want to go to the pub with Rolf? You're so MALE! Can't even take a hint!" snapped Penelope.
"You're right, I hate that kind of fancy-schmancy stuff." said Oliver, but Percy noticed his expensive shoes and strong cologne.
"Allons-y!" Rolf said cheerfully. "That means 'let's go'."
"Well, allons-y, then." Oliver said, getting up.
"Hope you enjoyed your wild mushroom patties!" Percy yelled out the door with a smirk.
"OI!" called Oliver, and Percy could hear Rolf laughing from down the street.
"Pen, are you and Oliver.. dating?" said Percy, digging through his closet.
Penelope snorted. "Ohoho, good one."
Percy smirked into his closet. "Absolutely nothing between you and, let's see, uh, Oliver?"
Pen poked her head out of the dresser. "Perce, he is my best friend. We are best friends. Don't you get it? Mates! We eat chips together and make fun of you--"
"He is my best friend. Get it?"
Percy didn't get it.
They worked in silence, Percy thinking about all his knitted sweaters, and Penelope was rumaging though Percy's closet, determinded not to talk about Oliver, and occasionally yelling "Accio Nice Clothes!", but nothing flew at her.
"What about my plaid shirt?" asked Percy.
"But.. Braccae illae virides cum subucula rosea et tunica Caledonia-quam elenganter concinnatur!"
"You are so weird, please explain," said Penelope, who was currently taking Greek classes at the uni.
"Those green pants go so well with that pink shirt and the plaid jacket!"
"And you wonder why you don't have a girlfriend.."
Percy decided to ignore this comment and ask, "Polo shirt?"
"Just fooling you, I don't have a polo shirt."
"Just shut up and try this." Penelope thrust a sport jacket, dress pants, and a bowtie at Percy.
"I'll look like a penguin!" Percy moaned.
"You'll look like a well-dressed penguin," said Penelope.
"How can I repay you?" Percy asked.
"Shave, brush your teeth, don't forget to be awesome." Penelope answered.
"What if the date goes bad?"
"There's other fish in the sea."
"But what if the fish are actually sharks? What no fish like me? What if nobody likes me?"
"You're such a freak." Penelope stated, but she was smiling.
Two things ran through Percy's mind at the restaurant when he saw Camille: 1) she was pretty, and 2) she was pretty.
In his defence, he was male.
He swallowed hard and approached her, hoping he wasn't too sweaty or really red.
"Bonjour," he said.
Camille bit her lip. "Two waters, please, my date isn't here yet." she said in perfect English. "And can you spike mine with a bit of vodka? This may be a little rough."
Percy widened his eyes. This was going worse than expected! "Er, I'm Percy Weasley.. your date."
"Oh!" she cried with a suddenly heavy accent, "You brother, 'Illam, said 'e was attractive!"
Percy sat down awkwardly, for he had already been insulted once and the date hadn't even started.
"Vous avez de jolis yeux," he said. They were.. nice, he supposed, lovely and green.
"Merci!" she exclaimed, running her hand through her long, blonde hair.
"De nada," he said, and she giggled loudly, but he didn't have a clue why.
"Yeah, and it's Camille, correct?"
Ten minutes had passed, and their conversation was failing faster than a student taking Professor McGonagall's final exam without studying. Percy, desperate, tried talking Quiddich, but Camille shot it down, saying "ze French don't play Quiddich, ze spaht eez tenneez." Percy, who had never played tennis in his life, didn't know what to say.
"So how do you know Fleur?" he asked, after twenty minutes passed and he was quietly sipping a Sprite.
"She is my favourite amie," Camille said, leaving Percy wondering what an "amie" was. "You are 'elated to her?"
"Er, yeah. Sister-in-law." but she wasn't really listening.
"'ercy, I'm so sorry, but I see someone I want to talk to." Camille promptly excused herself, leaving Percy wondering what he did wrong and to painfully go over every single detail of their dinner.
When she returned, no less then seventeen minutes later, he found her to be more cross at him than usual, and they twirled their spaghetti in silence.
"Mughabaon?" he asked, his mouth full of pasta.
"Excuze-moi?" she asked, batting her long eyelashes.
"Are you Muggle-born?" he asked again, feeling particularly awkward.
"'Alf-blood, my mum eez a witch and mon papere eez a Muggle. You?"
"Pure. But that doesn't matter, does it?"
Camille shrugged and they ate in silence again, leaving Percy curious about what to do. What would Oliver say? He asked himself.
There's this French phrase our roommate taught us, remember? Jean Dupont? It can make any girl fall over you. Well, any girl who speaks French.. The effect isn't so great with girls who don't speak French, because, they don't speak French.
"Look, Camille, I'm sorry that I've been boring--" Percy started, the tips of his ears turning pink.
"Eetz okay, you're cute." she smiled a dazzling smile and he felt like he was going to melt or perhaps turn an embarrassing shade of red.
"You see, I don't speak French, I know Latin, but that's not very impressive--"
"Aww, say something in Latin!"
"Me transmitte sursum, Caledoni!" he mumbled, hoping she didn't speak Latin as well, for he just said 'beam me up, Scotty'.
"Well, uh, I know a phrase in French, er, I'd liketosayittoyoubecauseyou'repretty." he stuttered, starting to sweat.
"Vous vendez votre corps pour de l'argent."
"I am appalled at your behaviour, Percy." Bill Weasley said.
Percy moaned and patted his black eye, a red slap mark still imprinted on his pale face. "I didn't even know what it meant! Blame Oliver, Rolf, and Pen, they said it was a compliment!"
"You called her--"
"I swear upon Merlin's trousers that I didn't mean it, I mean, sure, she isn't actually--"
"Percy, you informed her that she sells her body for money."
"Oh. Not good?"
"Not good at all." Bill said.
Poor Percy, always getting himself into awkward situations. If you enjoy his misery, please leave a review! Thanks to all who do and thank you Arielle for being an inspiration :) Anyway, if anyone cares, there'll be more up soon. Yay.
Anything you recognise belongs to said source.
Amie - Friend
Moi - Me
Mon papere - My dad
Bonjour - Hello
De nada - You're welcome (Spanish)
Vous avez de jolis yeux - you have pretty eyes
Vous vendez votre corps pour de l'argent - literally ; You sell your body for money
Allons-y - Let's go
Braccae illae virides cum subucula rosea et tunica Caledonia-quam elenganter concinnatur - Those green pants go so well with that pink shirt and the plaid jacket (Latin)
Merci - Thank you
Me transmitte sursum, Caledoni - Beam me up, Scotty
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