Chapter 2 : December
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People pushing and shoving as you clutch your bags as though Voldemort himself may come out and curse you if you loosen your grip in the slightest.
Go go go. Running here, yelling there, the sound of twenty thousand tills ringing all at once. I swear on the promise, if we all just stopped for a minute we’d see how utterly mad we all look.
Yet for some reason, we keep rushing around and never stop to see what’s right in front of us.
Hence my utter hate for department stores.
Friday, December 20th
The closer it gets to Christmas, the more I want to kick myself in the head for procrastinating gift shopping. This is why it’s five days until Christmas and I am raking my brain for something to buy my brother. Everyone else was so easy… A new record for mum, quills and ink for papps, make-up for Lizzie, kitty-stickers for Laura, and treats for Jane, Laura’s cat.
And for Mark? It’s like my brain is saying, ‘Ha. I’m not giving you your fondest memories with your brother from the past 24 years of your life, nor any gifts that you have sitting in the back of your closet ready to be re-gifted, you figure this one out on your own.’
Which is why I am frantically strolling through Harvey Nichols, looking for a tie.
A bloody tie.
I give up. Just give me the London’s Most Dirt Bag Sister Ever award now.
Eventually, after rummaging through stacks of ties and getting several dirty looks from the sales women, I ended up going with a blue and silver dot tie.
He was in Ravenclaw back in school; it’ll bring him good memories of me sitting on him.
Don’t look at me like that, I went to muggle school so I may have occasionally needed help with my homework, and perhaps the only way of getting the extremely necessary English essay revised was sitting on my dear brother.
Don’t knock it until you try it…
I walked over to the till, but not without getting knocked over at least twice… It’s not my fault I’m only 5’5! That is an average height, thank you very much.
I finally made it to the back of the insanely long line of Christmas shoppers, when it occurred to me how stressed I really was. It took the entire 45 minutes of standing in that line at Harvey Nichols to finally be able to breathe normally and for the first time take in my surroundings. I saw people old and young; terrified and enlightened, struggling to get by and terribly well off.
I’ve never been one for people watching, but for the first time, I felt not so alone in the world. I mean, I stood there watching, observing, and ignoring my anxiety over being cooped up in a room with lots of people, all these people. We were all here for somewhat similar purposes, I guess, but it just all felt strange.
“That’ll be £85.00, please.”
I looked up into the bright shining eyes of a young man. I shook my head from my thoughts and I gave him my plastic, and then signed the paper, scratching “Lydia Storben” into the receipt. I felt dazed, and suddenly felt self-conscious, not wanting to be that bloody person who takes too long at the till. Before I had a chance to return the paper I heard a faint “Lydia”. I looked up and the man smiled at me.
“Lydia. We met last month at the bookstore.”
“James. I took your seat last month at the bookstore.” I replied.
He chuckled, handing me back my plastic and placing the tie and receipt in the bag.
“Merry Christmas, Lydia Storben.”
I smiled and walked away from the till as I fished my receipt from the bag.
A/N: So my original intent was to make each chapter in James and Lydia’s love story exactly 500 words each… but I really felt good about this chapter, and didn’t want to delete 100 words so… sorry not sorry :) Hope you guys like the story so far! Thanks to my first two reviewers, Hailee and countrymusicfanatic.
Don’t forget to feed that hungry review box down there. :)
Feeling a lot of inspiration for this story, should be updating quickly!
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