Chapter 2 : I Just Want to Forget
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So...Chapter Two! I hope you like where this takes you, and you are itching for more! :D
Disclaimer: I solemnly swear that I am not J.K. Rowling, and that I am up to no good. ;)
Chapter Two: I Just Want to Forget
“I want you back by the dinner shift, Thee!” Hannah called from the door of the Leaky Cauldron, watching with distaste as her daughter ran up the cobbled street of Diagon Alley, weaving through the crowds with a large basket on her arm. “Don’t be late!”
Dorothy ignored her mother, already knowing the way her afternoon would pan out. She slowed as she approached the noisy doorway of Weasleys’ Wizard Wheezes, the shop that had become a second home to her over her lifetime.
Grinning at the chaos she knew she would find inside, Dorothy pulled open one of the large doors and began to make her way through the crowd. She knew where he’d be, and she clutched the dark brown basket to her chest protectively. Passing through rambunctious school kids, laughing crowds, and product demonstrations, Dorothy finally managed to reach the check out desk and crawled beneath it.
“Got quite a haul for Hogwarts this year, don’t ya, Ethan?”
The young boy digging in his pockets for money looked up and beamed. “You got it, Freddie!” he said. “We got plenty in store, don’t you worry!”
Freddie laughed, the sound pure and clean and distinct from all the others in the shop. Dorothy smiled next to him, watching his practiced hands wrap merchandise without a thought as he rang up the purchase. “Sounds brilliant, mate,” Freddie said, a mischievous twinkle ever prominent in his chocolate eyes dancing. “We’ll be looking forward to it, won’t we, Dor?” Freddie’s warm grin flashed onto her for a moment and he winked.
Ethan looked at her expectantly and she laughed. “Of course we will!” Dorothy stammered, her face becoming a bright shade of red as Freddie laughed at her obvious discomfort of being put on the spot. She nudged Freddie as she ran a dainty hand through her long blonde hair. “You’ve got to make my last year at Hogwarts memorable for me, okay, Ethan?”
Ethan’s face lit up. “You got it!”
“Would you just look at those people skills?” Freddie joked, his face full of childish glee. “You’re a natural!”
“Shut up, you daft log,” Dorothy muttered. “You suck. I hate you.”
Freddie snorted, beginning to ring up his next customer. “Bollocks, sweetheart.”
Dorothy let out a grunt of frustration as she found herself laughing at him. She shoved him half-heartedly, and he laughed. “What’s up, Dor, you’re distracting me from my shift.”
“Oh, Merlin forbid,” she laughed, winking. “I just wanted to let you know I was here, with the extra trifle for your father. Honestly, you are the reason we can’t have nice things, spilling the beans to your dad all the time.”
Freddie shot her a grin. “He ups my pay when I do.”
“Oh, so killing our traditions is worth a few extra Sickles? You know my mum hates it when I steal food.”
“Ah, but then she looks at me and all her troubles melt away.”
Dorothy rolled her eyes. “I’ll be upstairs. I’m going to drop Georgie’s dessert off and then set up for us, alright?”
“I’ll be counting the minutes,” he lamented.
Dorothy laughed, her cheeks tinting red again. “Oh, hush up, Freddie!”
She turned and scurried out from behind the counter, shooting him a saucy wink over her shoulder as she made her way to the back corner of the store. “Is that your little girlfriend, Fredrick?”
Freddie looked up into the old eyes of his customer, Mrs. Hannigan, who was buying small pranks for her grandson, like every week. “No,” he said. “That’s Dorothy Longbottom. She’s just my best friend.”
Mrs. Hannigan gave him a wise smile. “I’ve seen many people in love in my years, Fredrick. You’re one of them.”
He laughed, shaking his head. “We’re friends. Nothing more.” He sighed and looked up at her. “Now, would you prefer to pay me now or put it on your tab?”
Dorothy reached the spiral staircase and began to climb towards the upper tier of the shop where the offices were. She made her way down a brightly painted corridor towards a large oak door with a bronze plaque shining upon it: George Weasley: Co-Founder and Owner.
Knocking twice, she pushed open the door and poked her head inside it. “Hello?”
“You can only come in if you have my goodies.”
Dorothy snorted with laughter. George Wealsey sat before her in a tall leather office chair, his feet crossed and propped up on his large desk that was overflowing with papers, an Aviatomobile flying around above him. It always surprised Dorothy of how much of a child George was when he was so overly old behind his eyes.
“Do you really think I’d forget about my favorite Uncle?”
George beamed and let the flying toy car land on the sofa in the corner of the room, motioning for Dorothy to come inside his office. “I’ll be dead if Ange catches me eating trifle again, blasted woman put me on another one of her crazy diets,” he told her as she opened her basket on his desk. “Hand it over, I haven’t had any good food in weeks.”
Dorothy felt another blush tinting her cheeks and cursed herself. “Right out of the oven, Hannah Longbottom’s Famous Trifle,” she said, placing the dish in his hands.
George let out a moan at the sight of it. “I love your mum, Thee. Really, truly do.”
“She always says the quickest way to a man’s heart is through his stomach,” Dorothy joked softly.
He took a large bite of his dessert and sank into his chair. “She’s a brilliant witch. I owe you one.”
Dorothy smiled. “No, you don’t, and you know it.”
“No, really. Take something from the shop once you and Fred finish up. Have him record it. My treat.”
Dorothy leaned over the desk and pecked George’s cheek. “You’re sweet to me, Uncle George.”
“Not as sweet as this trifle is to me.”
Dorothy closed up her lunch basket and left his office, giving him a small wave over her shoulder before she slipped out. She walked down the corridor passing doors on her left, watching exuberant customers beneath her on the right. Freddie looked up and caught her eye, motioning that he had five more minutes until he could join her upstairs. She nodded and turned into the last door before the stairs she’d ascended earlier, and disappeared inside the employee break room.
Dorothy jumped, nearly dropping her basket onto the floor. “Merlin!” she gasped, clutching her basket to her chest as she turned. “You scared the life out of me!”
There was a deep chuckle, one that lingered on the side of sadness. “Sorry,” he said, standing from his chair.
Dorothy’s heart was pounding in her chest as she looked at him. James Potter. His hair looked soft and clean, probably smelling of the musky scent he normally wore. He was wearing a faded Wheezes tee shirt and jeans, normal uniform for George’s employees. When her hungry blue eyes reached his however, their normal hazel cheeriness was watery and cold.
“James? Are…are you alright?”
James forced a smile. “Course. Why wouldn’t I be?”
Dorothy set her basket down on one of the tables and slowly made her way towards him. “You look…sad.”
James shook his head, breaking the eye contact. “Nah, I’m alright. No need to worry.”
“Come on, James,” she said softly, taking his hand in hers, gesturing for him to sit with her. “I’ve known you since we were babies. I can tell when something’s wrong.”
James let out a shuddering sigh and placed his head in his hands. “I…I fucked up, Dorothy. I fucked up bad.”
Dorothy looked over at Freddie and giggled. The greenhouses were wonderfully warm in comparison with the crisp fall air and Freddie had fallen asleep amidst the shrubbery lining the tables. Quickly peeking up, she saw her father was still animatedly discussing the Whomping Willow in preparation for their trip to study it up close and personal. Pulling her bottom lip between her teeth, Dorothy picked up her quill and aimed the feather towards Freddie’s ear, focusing on his steady breathing that let her know he was still asleep.
He jolted awake as she twirled the end of her quill in his ear, letting out a small shout and slipping from his chair, landing with a loud bang on the greenhouse floor. Dorothy choked on her laughter burying her face in her hands as Freddie wheezed, trying to control his fear.
“Uh, Freddie? Are you alright?” Neville asked, obviously shocked that not all of his NEWT level students were as entranced by the discussion of the caring for the limbs of the violent plant if injured during a defensive attack as he was.
Freddie looked up and glared at his best friend who was currently trying not to explode into hysterics. “My butt fell asleep.”
Dorothy looked over at him and bit down hard on her lips, failing at restraining her laughter as she began to snort uncontrollably, her eyes watering as she began to laugh, wheezing with sharp intakes of air and slamming her hand down on the table.
Neville looked to be highly uncomfortable. He didn’t want to scold his daughter in front of the class, knowing how easily she could be embarrassed. However, he didn’t want to give her any special treatment since she was his daughter. Honestly, half of the time he wished she’d dropped his class.
“Please control yourselves,” he said shooting them a look as Freddie climbed back onto his stool. “I don’t want to give you a detention.”
“Sorry, Professor,” Dorothy managed, unable to look at her father or Freddie.
Neville nodded curtly. “Okay. So, as I as saying, the branches of a Whomping Willow are like its arms, and if injured, must be cared for as such. Now, when approaching an injured tree, one must be very aware of the eminent risks…”
“You suck,” Freddie whispered to Dorothy.
She turned to him and smiled. “You’re a bad influence on me.”
“How can I influence you while I’m asleep?”
She chuckled, toying with her fingers and pretending to take notes. “Well, you were sleeping and I was bored.”
He frowned. “So your solution was to put your quill in my ear.”
“I learned from the best,” she said, batting her eyes at him.
Freddie grinned. “After all this time…you have learned something!”
Dorothy rolled her eyes and shoved him lightly with her shoulder. “Oh, hush.”
“Today…today is a proud day. I’m gonna have to write my dad about this, you know.”
She laughed. “Freddie!”
Dorothy frowned. “That’s weird.”
“What?” Freddie asked, curious.
“You called me ‘Dorothy.’ Only James calls me that.”
Freddie frowned. “Really?”
“Yeah,” she said thoughtfully. Then, she smiled. “He’s the only person I allow.”
Freddie nodded slowly, staring at her from the corner of his eye. He watched the small smile become a silly grin as she said, “He’s always called me Dorothy. Like it made me special…beautiful. And it did, for a while. It was this special thing that he and I shared. My full name.”
“Does he still make you feel special? Beautiful?” Freddie whispered.
Her smile dimmed a little. “Sometimes. Sometimes, he makes me feel like I’m the only girl in the world, like I’m the only person he’d ever want to be around.”
Freddie nodded. “And the rest of the time?”
Dorothy shook her head. “You already know, Fred.”
“How the hell is that worth it?” Freddie demanded, turning to her. “How is dealing with the bad worth anything at all?”
“Why do you always have to bring this up, Freddie?” Dorothy tossed back. “Ever since I told you about James and me, all we do is talk about it! It’s all you ever seem to bring up. Don’t you think it’s on my mind enough? Maybe that I need some distraction?”
Freddie sighed. “You’re my best friend. I want to make sure you aren’t making any mistakes.”
“Well, as soon as I figure it out, you’ll be the first to know!” she snapped. “You’re my best friend, too, and I need you, Freddie. But I don’t need you constantly making me feel bad about myself over James.”
“He’s the one who makes you feel bad about yourself.”
“You pointing that out sure doesn’t help,” she snuffed.
“I’m just trying to have your back.”
Dorothy looked at him, a fire she could only ever show Freddie in her eyes. “If that’s what you call having my back, I really wish you wouldn’t.”
Dorothy was sitting on a desk in an abandoned classroom when James walked in. “Dorothy? Everything alright?”
She smiled in relief when she saw him. “You came.”
“Of course I did,” he said approaching her. “Your owl sounded urgent. Are you alright?”
“I just,” she began. She stopped and looked up into his eyes. Those hazel eyes that were full of concern for her. That saw only her, if only for just this moment. “I just needed you. Is that okay? I know you’re trying to get back with Jen, and if you want you can just turn and walk out of here, but I would really just love to forget for a little while, and—”
James cut off her babbling with his lips. Dorothy’s hands gripped his shoulders and she melted into his strong chest. He pulled back and smiled at her. “I’m always here when you need me, Dorothy.”
She smiled again, her heart flying as she pulled him back into her, wrapping her arms tightly around his neck and meeting his lips again, pouring out her emotions into the embrace. All of her anger and confusion towards Freddie and all of her love and pain towards James, pushing her and motivating their kiss as he pressed into her, his large hands untucking and sliding up her shirt, caressing her pale smooth skin as she ran her fingers through his soft black hair.
His lips trailed down her chin and latched onto her neck, and she tilted it back, offering him more of her skin. “James,” she whispered as he touched her like no one else had. His hands were demanding, yet gentle, running over her torso confidently and unabashed. Everything was so familiar, but so enticing. She was drowning, drowning in her emotions, drowning in her pain, drowning in James.
Her hands left his hair and moved to his tie, loosening it enough for her to unbutton his shirt and push it apart, now allowing her contact with his hot, hard skin. Dorothy’s legs wrapped around his thin waist, keeping him as close to her as she could, taking as much of him in as she could.
She replaced everything with one word.
There was a loud beeping by her head. Frowning, Dorothy rolled over, ignoring it. She didn’t want to talk to Freddie.
The beep interrupted her light sleep again, and she groaned, pulling the glowing diary from beneath her pillow. Grabbing her wand from her night stand, she whispered, “Lumos.”
Upon the page in Freddie’s scribbles were the words, “I’m sorry.”
She reached back out to her night stand and grabbed the quill and ink. “Don’t be,” she replied. “You were just trying to be there for me.”
“I knew how much it hurt you though. I was stupid. I am stupid.”
She bit her lip. “We’re both stupid.”
“I love you, Dor.”
“Really?” she wrote back. “Tell me a story.”
So...James and Dorothy action! Hopefully you liked it, rate and review! :D
Peace, Love, and Potter,
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