Chapter 24 : A Moment of Fluff
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‘Hello,’ I mumbled against her lips, becoming less and less aware of the fact we were standing in the middle of a corridor full of people, and possibly professors, making out.
‘Get a room!’ I heard a person mutter.
Ah well! I just lifted my hands up to Char’s waist, placing them against her cool skin. She giggled.
‘James, please!’ ok well that voice sounded a little more familiar, I reluctantly pulled away and stuck my tongue out at Dom who was looking disgusted. Jessica stood by her with a slightly strange expression, looking away out of the castle doors.
‘Come on Charlie,’ I linked my fingers through hers, brushed her lips once more, and pulled her outside into the cold November air.
The first few months of the first Term had passed in a blur. The teachers insisted on piling heaps of Homework upon us in our final year and notes needed to be written, tests needed to be studied for, Quidditch matches needed serious training; social lives became almost a word from a foreign language. I couldn’t remember the last time I’d snuck into Hogwarts for a couple of hours.
What was worse is that we spent more and more time cooped up in the Common Room, pouring over textbooks, I was beginning to lose my tan from lack of time I spent outside. I mean, you don’t exactly tan by playing Quidditch in the evenings now do you. So henceforth me and Charlie had decided to take a day off... together.
‘To Hogsmeade,’ Charla grinned following the trickle of students heading out the gate.
I noticed Albus among them, and on his arm a pretty little sixth year girl, I think the sister of Sean Finnegan, (Gryffie Arsehole in my year), she was very pretty, with long brown hair falling down her back and petite features.
Charla looked... like Charla. Her hair was windswept and all over the place. She was wearing her Quidditch Hoodie with number 5 written on the back. Her jeans were muddy around the bottom and her Sneakers had my handwriting all over them.
‘I love you,’ Charlie sighed, leaning against me slightly as we walked, managing to tread in a puddle along the way.
‘Genius,’ I teased, as her nose wrinkled up and she shook her foot squealing.
‘Oooh it’s cold!’ she moaned, hoping around.
‘Come here,’ I grabbed her waist and pulled her close, slightly to the side of the wide path from Hogwarts to Hogsmeade.
I leant over her until our noses brushed then I whipped out my wand and swished it through her hair, watching the warm fuzzy air hover above her toes on her left foot. Being in the perfect position, I leant down and kiss her again, as she wrapped her arms around my neck.
‘We probably shouldn’t be doing this in the middle of the path,’ Charlie whispered, leaning her forehead against my cheek, ‘and I’m still holding you to that promise that you would buy me lunch!’
‘I’m going to buy you lunch,’ I insisted, ‘don’t I always?’
‘No!’ Char replied, ‘we eat lunch at Hogwarts where we don’t have to pay,’ she spluttered with laughter, bumping my shoulder with hers.
‘Yeah,’ I shrugged, ‘but whenever we do go out I pay!’ I reminded her, she didn’t need to remind me, though I am an immensely gentlemanly man, I didn’t always oblige to this rule.
‘Whatever, I want lunch!’ she whined.
We ate lunch in the Three Broomsticks, which wasn’t as crowded as it could have been due to the majority of students finding it too cold to go out or were already broke as Christmas was approaching and were saving the little money they had to buy presents for their family, (cough, Freddie, cough, cough!)
After lunch, I was dragged into a clothes shop... fantastic!
To make it even more fantastic... It was a branch of Victoire’s clothes shops... so despite being nice clothes... they were all for girls.
‘Did you know that the prep for the Graduation Ball has already begun?’ Charla asked, skimming through a rack of dresses.
‘If I say yes will you let us leave?’ I pouted and wrapped my arms around her waist, leaning my head on her shoulder.
‘Nope,’ Char giggled, ‘I’m just looking, I won’t buy anything till I know the theme. But Vic told me and Dom that she would keep anything for us if we saw something we liked.’
‘Couldn’t you come with Dom on some other day,’ I whined, blowing a hanging glove out of my face.
‘You said we could do what I wanted!’ Char cackled, ‘Don’t worry Jam, we’re only going to be an hour, tops. If you help me I could make it half an hour.’
‘How can I be of service ma’am?’ I stepped back and saluted her with mock superiority.
‘What dresses do you like?’
Apparently it is an unspoken rule that guys cannot shop for dresses... I saw a short, low cut, bright red dress on a faceless model that kept switching it’s pose. Very slutty... So I pointed it out to Char.
‘How about that one?’ I grinned.
‘Because it’s short, or because my boobs will be on display?’ she whispered. Her tone of voice told me she wasn’t impressed but her eyes were laughing.
‘Ok,’ I murmured, strutting over to the costume section of the shop and picked out the longest, least-body-revealing dress of the ugliest colour that I could find and presented it to Char. The look on her face told me that this was clearly not an option.
‘Oh come on James,’ she giggled, ‘this is serious.’
‘You’re so beautiful you would look ok turning up dressed covered in Owl Poop!’ Charla blushed. Yeah I know it’s cliché... so sue me!
Charla’s eyes caught on a spot behind me and she pushed past, squealing again, (she seemed to be doing that a lot today.)
‘Oh my Merlin, look at this dress Jam!’ She cried, spinning round so the material span with her. She held it up to herself, jumping up and down with glee. It was a short green thing with silver around the waist and tied in a crisscross pattern at the back.
Sorry that’s the best description I can give... I am a guy after all...
‘Gorgeous!’ I rolled my eyes, ‘can we leave now.’
‘No!’ she cried, ‘seriously do you like it?’
Did I like it? Sure, it was my ticket out of here... did I really like it... nope, the one behind it was prettier. Which I told her, picking out the long blue halter neck... thingamy... with a low cut back and it was... very dress like...
Charla giggled again, pulling the second dress towards her, ‘Oh it’s so pretty!’ she exclaimed. ‘Do you think Vic will save both... so I can decide later.’
‘Mrs Lupin isn’t here at the moment but we can save it for now and check with her later,’ put in a passing assistant.
‘She’ll reserve it,’ I nodded to the assistant, ‘please tell her when she gets back, these are reserved under James Potter for his girlfriend, she’ll understand.’
The assistant nodded and proceeded to take the clothes into the back, hanging them on a rack through the door.
‘Right,’ I turned to Char running my hands down her arms, ‘my turn to choose what to do!’
~ ~ ~
Charla didn’t need much persuading to get up in the air, truth was she loved Quidditch just as much as I did... if not more... no not more, no one can love Quidditch more than James Potter.
‘Heads up!’ I threw the school Quaffle into her hands across the pitch and she chucked it through the left goal post, it didn’t even hit the sides. She ducked down for it so it didn’t hit the ground and past it back, swooping around me.
‘What kind of a date is this?’ she laughed, dropping down to fly beside me.
‘A nice kind!’ I leant forward and kissed her forehead, keeping my hands firmly on the broom handle so I didn’t fall.
‘Mmmhmm,’ she murmured, her lips finding mine, she kissed me quickly before breaking apart and raising an eyebrow. ‘A nice kind, you say?’
‘Yes,’ I punched the Quaffle out from under her hand and set off towards the goal, scoring easily, ‘ten, ten...’ I told her the score, ‘what would make it better.’
‘This!’ she reached out to me, wrapping an arm around my neck and pressing her lips against mine. I could feel her other arm creep around me waist and her hand press against my back.
I settled one of my hands on her waist, under her t-shirt so I could feel her cool skin an her stomach clenching. My other hand remained on the broom, keeping us both steady.
Char’s hands moved, up to my face, running through my hair, she smiled against my lips and pressed herself more against me. I watched fireworks go off, my mind completely frazzled.
Something reminded me of my conversation with Jessica, ‘You’ve already asked her to?’... move in. I couldn’t imagine it any other way.
I brought my head back a little, Char’s lips still caught on mine. ‘James!’ she whined against them, cupping my face in her hands and trying to pull me back.
‘Wait!’ I laughed, ‘I wanted to talk to you about something.’
Was this a good idea? Did I care?
‘Charlie,’ I warned as she kissed me again.
‘Can’t it wait?’
‘Look,’ I whispered, ‘I have no idea what’s going to happen after Hogwarts, you want to work with Dragons, I’m still waiting to see if I’ll get signed by some Quidditch team... but one thing I know for sure... is mum sent me a letter the other day... Godric’s Hollow is mine now... officially!’
‘That’s fantastic!’ Char cried, beaming.
‘Thing is,’ I added, ‘I don’t want to live alone...’
‘What are you saying,’ she looked at me suspiciously, her eyes full of excitement, that’s a good sign right.
‘Idon’tcareifwearen’ttogetherafterHogwartsifthat’snotwhatyouwantbutI’mgonnahaveasparebedroomortwoatmyhouseandIwantyoutohaveit!’ I said very fast.
‘What?’ Char burst out laughing. ‘Slower.’
‘You’ll move in with me right?’ I whispered.
‘Of course!’ Char giggled, ‘you know I would, any day!’
‘Even if we aren’t together after Hogwarts?’
‘Even if Kneazle’s take over the world!’ she promised, ‘best friends forever!’
‘And more!’ I cupped both my hands around her face and pulled her close, melting into the kiss.
‘Forever!’ She murmured.
~ ~ ~
I reached the castle that evening, after a stroll... to the Kitchens. Hey, don’t look at me like that, I was hungry! And found Jessica standing outside the portrait hole, picking her fingernails. She heard me coming and looked up smiling.
‘Hey,’ she grinned, ‘I was in Hogsmeade today and I passed by Weasley Wizard Wheezers.’ She pulled out an envelope. ‘A blonde woman told me to give this to you.’
‘A blonde woman?’ I had thought Vic was out... clearly not.
Together we entered the portrait hole, I ripped open the envelope,
Please tell Dominique, I’m sorry and then ask what the hell is going on? It is very urgent!
Love you always.
I raced up the stairs, pausing only to greet Charla with a kiss on the cheek, and threw open my trunk. Even though Vic had cleaned it just before I had arrived at Hogwarts it was already a mess, there were crumpled clothes and lone quills and single socks. I found an old piece of parchment marked by a folded corner and pulled it out.
‘I solemnly swear that I am up to no good!’ I whispered, after checking that there was no one around to see me.
The Marauders Map spiralled out beneath my fingers. Footsteps and name tags appeared indicating every single person on the castle. I found myself in the room marked as the Gryffindor Seventh Year Boys Dorm, but that was not who I was looking for.
‘Who are we looking for?’ I heard Fred’s voice sound out, making me jump. He had appeared, sitting on my bed watching me.
‘Dom,’ I replied, ‘I didn’t see her in the common room!’
Fred leant over my shoulder and folded the map out further, looking onto the first floor. There was Rosie’s label in a broom cupboard... with Scorpius Malfoy. Gross-ness!
And there was Lily walking out of the Great Hall with Aurora and Hugo.
‘Dom, Dom, Dom,’ I muttered, skimming my eyes over the Second Floor.
And there she was, with Moaning Myrtle in the second floor bathroom. No sooner had I seen her name, I left, shoving the map into my pocket, not bothering to clear it, and race out the room, leaving Fred clueless.
I took a shortcut to the bathroom, and knocked on the door, waiting to hear a reply. There was a faint gurgling from inside but nothing else.
‘Dominique?’ I called, not too loudly.
I checked the map again, she was still in there, not in a cubicle, and alone, besides the ghost. So I tentatively opened the door and peered in.
Dominique was hunched over on the floor and Myrtle was moping around the ceiling, wailing softly.
I shut the door behind me and muttered a spell to lock it, so I wouldn’t find myself caught in a girls bathroom. ‘Dom?’ I said. Dom didn’t turn around, but she did lift her head slightly. I moved over to her and touched her shoulder.
Her eyes met mine and they were puffy from crying. She reached up to me so I pulled her up into a hug.
‘Merlin, Dom, what happened to you?’
‘I made a huge mistake,’ she murmured, ‘I can’t believe what I did!’
‘What?’ I comforted, ‘it can’t be that bad? I mean, we’ve all done stupid things, Fred’s nearly been expelled, it can’t be as bad as that!’ I insisted.
‘Trust me, James,’ she cried, ‘it’s worse!’
‘It is!’ Myrtle cackled, ‘I couldn’t believe it! Another Weasley in that kind of trouble, why you are a naughty bunch.’
‘Oh shut- wait,’ I paused, ‘another Weasley? What do you mean?’
‘Ask her yourself, she’s been dying to tell someone, but her sister couldn’t bear to think she had done such a thing, ohhh she’s going to be in such trouble!’ Myrtle laughed and dived down a plug hole, poking her head out of the sink to watch the rest of the conversation unfold.
‘Dom, tell me what’s going on!’
‘I think...’ she whispered, ‘I think I’m pregnant...’
Well, here is the end of another Chappie, quite a long one at that. You will be pleased (or maybe not so pleased) to know that there are around nine more Chapters and they are almost all written and spell checked.
Did you enjoy this little cuteness moment? A Smidgen more of Jessica? What do you think is going on with our dearest Dom? Will Holly ever be more than the Clueless Muggle Girl? And why was Victoire in the castle when James returned? Tell me what you think.
I own nothing, and don’t claim to own anything. Thanks for reading and please leave a review!
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