Chapter 1 : One
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He just wants to chat. I've hardly really spoken to him since I moved departments. But he's so much stricter than Gavin. Constantly checking your working, I mean who has time for that? As long as his stupid article gets done what does he care?
I haven't done anything bad, really. There was that time I owled in sick so I could go to that big sale in Diagon Alley and I ran into him. Then there was the time I wrote a big article about the murder of a wealthy pureblood but it turned out to be a charity hoax with actors and everything. The paper got delayed a day for that actually.
But this is different. Maybe he just wants to get to know me. He's realised I must be a lovely person and feels guilty for not taking an interest in me. That's got to be it.
I was sat on a chair opposite his in Craig's office. I crossed one leg over the other and frowned. I hope he hasn't noticed a pattern with my sick days. I had our ten month anniversary off last week as well. But James took the day off too, (thanks to Emma). So that's okay, right?
"Nelissa," Craig said as he walked in the room. He hurried to his desk and sat down smiling. But then he frowned. He is worse than Gavin.
"Yes?" I asked cautiously.
"You getting on okay? You look worried,"
"Heartburn," I lied.
"Or adrenaline at having such a high powered job, eh? I get it too," he chuckled. He really has no idea.
"Well, here's the big news. I've got you a gig,"
"A gig?" I echoed. What am I? A boy band from my parents generation.
"That article you wrote in first person last month was cosmic. After some persuasion and a bit of blackmail and stalking..." Craig said.
"Just a little bit," he laughed loudly.
I know there are things reporters must do but it's not nice being stalked. I remember a year ago when Hugo Weasley stalked me for a day. That was terrifying. Or terrifyingly hilarious according to Josie.
"You're shadowing at law enforcement, the investigation department. Not just in the offices, but out on the front line," Craig explained. "We want the real, raw stories,"
"Erm... Okay. When will I be starting?"
"After that week you need to take off for the procedure at St. Mungo's," Oh, Josie's engagement party. "You'll be there for a two month period,"
"What about my article on aurors in today's society?"
"Well, finish that after the meeting,"
"At law enforcement in an hour," he said, glancing down at his watch.
"Thanks for letting me know," I muttered under my breath.
"Go and prepare then," he urged. "Chop chop,"
I got up from where I was sat and made my way to the door. I looked back and found him smiling in encouragement. I will kill him.
* * *
When I apparated inside the Ministry it was a little quiet. I suppose people are busy working. But as I walked towards the lifts I saw groups of witches gossiping by some stairs. I knew it, it's just as crooked here as at the Prophet.
I got in the lift and pressed the button for law enforcement. Once the doors opened and I walked out I started to quieter my step. I hope I don't see any of James's family here. I've only ever met Lily properly. He doesn't speak to the rest of them, and if they know about us it's thanks to Witch Weekly.
I came to a huge room of offices and cubicles and stopped at a reception desk. The witch sat behind it didn't smile, she just looked me up and down. "Erm... I've got an appointment," I said carefully.
"Name?" she asked blankly.
"Nelissa Finnigan," I replied and she started to flick through some notes.
"Go on through to the auror department and they'll show you where you're staioned," the woman replied plainly. I walked through the centre of the desks and turned down a corridor. An archway was labelled auror office and I walked tentatively through. There were desks on either side and as I walked through workers I couldn't help noticing that the majority of aurors were male. I felt a little uncomfortable but the situation got significantly worse when I read the gold plaque on the dark door. 'Mr Harry J Potter, Head of Auror Office'. Shit. This can't be happening. I can't knock on the door of James's father's office.
I was contemplating running away (as best as I could in these shoes). But much to my horror the door opened. Harry Potter stepped back in shock but then smiled. It was bizarre. He was James, perhaps with wrinkles, glasses, a scar and green eyes. They were uncanny. I inhaled a deep breath and watched him tilt his head to the side for a moment. "I'm sorry," Harry stated.
"No, my fault, Mr Potter," I replied.
"Is there something I can help you with?"
"I'm Nelissa Finnigan. I think you're expecting me,"
"From the Prophet, of course. Please come in," he said and stood back to let me enter. But before he closed the door I heard him call out to someone, "I want that report with me before home time, MacFarland. I don't want to ask you again," I think James gets the scary gene from his father's side.
I sat in a chair opposite Harry's and as he sat down I noticed how shabby the Ministry offices are compared to all the others I've ever been in. There isn't even a sofa.
"We're very happy to have you. This is the first time we've done something like this," he explained.
"About that, I'm really grateful. But I think there's been some confusion. I was supposed to be shadowing the investigative department,"
"Yes, well currently we're doing some work to that department and because that department is a sub department of mine. You'll be shadowing here," he explained.
"I understand, but I'd rather be doing the investigating than the dark wizard catching,"
"We can arrange that," he laughed. "I went around and there was someone very happy for you to shadow them,"
"Brilliant," I breathed.
"Nelissa Finnigan," he muttered and looked down at some papers. "The name sounds familiar, I feel like I recognise you," he said. I became still and bit down on my lip.
"Can't think where from," I laughed shrilly. God, I hope he didnt see that picture of James and I trying to pull my heel from that cobble outside that posh bad. Or that article when the Ireland manager called me 'England's whore'.
"Is your father Seamus Finnigan?" he asked carefully. I felt myself relax as I started to nod. "You look like your mother - Lavender. Accept for the hair. We were in the same house together at school, same year as well,"
"Wow," I gasped, my voice slightly high.
"What a coincidence," Harry chuckled. You don't know the half of it. "Anyway, when you do your write ups just make sure you don't mention on going cases or names. Other than that you need to check in with me every morning and out every evening,"
"Okay," I replied weakly.
"I'll show you to your subject," he laughed. We stood up and he led me out and we started to approach a desk not far away. As we got nearer my heart rate sped up. I squinted my eyes and sighed in annoyance. This just keeps on getting better. "This is Han Chang," Harry explained and I watched his stupid Chinese looking lips smirk smugly.
"Nelissa Finnigan," he replied smoothly.
"I've briefed her, but I'll leave the rest to you," Harry smiled and turned towards his office. I crossed my legs and looked down on him.
"Your desk is next to mine," Han said and gestured to a pine desk virtually touching his.
"Thanks," I mumbled. Then I made my way over to it and sat down.
"How have you been? I haven't seen you for at least two years," he said.
"I know," I replied.
Two and a half years ago I was invited to a party and Han was there. The next morning I woke up next to him. I tried to sneak out of his flat but after getting stuck in the bathroom window and breaking a vase he caught me. Instead of running when I was free we ended up going to bed again. Resulting in a four month relationship.
"You're looking great. Even better than before," he said and raised one eyebrow.
"You look the same," I retorted.
"Thanks," he replied and took my hand. This time I did the right thing (we're not having another Hugo). I snatched my hand away.
"I'm here to shadow you, and I have a boyfriend," I rushed.
"Really?" he breathed. "Long term?"
"Bigger salary than mine?" he asked and I nodded. "You know how to wound a man," Han said and moved closer. I jolted and stood up from my chair.
"I'm going then, thanks," I said and hurried away.
"Nel!" Han called.
"I'll see you later!" I called and rushed from the offices. I hurried through a corridor and past the reception desk. The woman looked at me like I was acting odd, which if we're honest I was. I got out into a empty corridor and apparated.
When I reappeared I found myself outside the Club. I don't know why I came here, but after Han I felt like I should see James. Which is ridiculous because he's always busy.
I walked inside and looked around. I love it here, it's always so energetic and bubbly. The woman in reception smiled happily at me. "Afternoon, Miss Finnigan," she called. I nodded in acknowledgement and came to lifts. I pressed number seven once I was inside and tapped my toe as I waited.
When the doors opened I walked swiftly out and towards James's office. I opened the glass door and came to a stop in front of Emma's desk. She looked up and grinned. Everyone is always so happy here. "Hey Nel," Emma smiled.
"Hi, is he in?"
"No, not right now. He'll be back in a minute though. He had a meeting,"
"I'll go in and wait then," I shrugged.
"Okay. But just to warn you, he's really stressed today,"
"I can handle him," I laughed. I walked through another glass door and past his desk. I looked down onto the training pitch and frowned. I don't see what all the fuss is about. Then I
wandered over to his sofa and sat down. I felt a lump in the seat and started to bounce on it. After a minute I ran my hand under the cushion. To my amazement I pulled out a bra. It was a nice one as well, pink fabric with dark black lace. I hope it's mine. I looked at the label and frowned. 'Not Nelissa Finnigan's' in Josie's writing. Only she would write in her underwear.
We would get mixed up with who's underwear is who's. So she wrote in all of hers, declaring them not mine. I remember her giving me this bra actually. I brought pants to match. I'm actually wearing those pants today.
If James is feeling stressed I'm sure he'd appreciate a girlfriend with matching underwear. Not that we'd do anything in the office (says the woman who has just found her bra on the sofa), but when we get home it would have me hunting for matching underwear.
I hurried over to the blinds and discreetly pulled them down. Then I attempted to do the old unhook and out the sleeve trick. But my shirt is too tight and tucked into my pencil skirt. So I unbuttoned my shirt and removed it. Then I took off the bra I was wearing and stuffed it in my bag. I was just putting on the new one when I heard voices. James was talking about tactics and as I inched over to the glass door I saw James talking with one of the players. The player had his back to me but James was facing me with his hand on the doorknob. He looked at me for a minute, wearing no shirt, standing in my bra mouthing 'help' to him. But he didn't react as I expected, or maybe he reacted just as I expected. He laughed and smirked and did that smug look he does when we fight.
"Excuse me, if you'll just wait here a moment, Jonathan," James said and I watched the player head for the sofa. He walked inside and quickly closed the door behind him. Then he led me over to the sofa. That's when he started to laugh, real uncontrollable laughter as well.
"Stop bloody laughing," I hissed.
"Sorry," James chuckled. "What are you doing, Nel?"
"I'm trying to be sexy," I huffed.
"How is stripping in the office sexy?" he asked as I put my shirt on.
"I wasn't stripping, just changing,"
"No, my bra," I muttered and he laughed again. "I found a sexier one here,"
"Of course, that makes perfect sense, my love," he replied sarcastically.
"It does," I huffed.
"You're very sexy," James told me and pressed his lips to mine. "I'll be done soon and then you can be sexy with me in my apartment,"
"Okay," I agreed.
"Have you had a good day?" James asked politely.
"I'll tell you about it later," I frowned.
"Sounds ominous," he muttered. "Okay, you'll need to use your keys because I've had some new enchantments placed on my apartment,"
"I will," I agreed and kissed him again. I headed for the door and turned around. "Hurry up. And don't forget to cancel all your meetings for the weekend, you can't be late for Josie's engagement party,"
"I won't, I won't," James rolled his eyes and opened the door for me. He kissed me once more and as I walked past the player walked in. I turned around and saw James smirk again to himself. Prat.
Thanks for reading and feel free to review! This is chapter one of part two of Nelissa's story. Thanks again for all the support I've gotten and to a certain reviewer (they know who they are ;)) who has asked for JaNel! :)
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