Chapter 18 : We Tell Frichard About Our Wedding Plans
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We’re sifting through trees, bushes, and all types of shrubbery. It’s times like this I’m glad I have a herbology professor for a dad; I know the difference between safe plants and dangerous ones. That’s when Louis calls out to me, “Chase! Hey, I think I’ve found it!”
I rush over to where he is and, sure enough, there it sits. My Uncles had always described it as blue, but it was now brown with dirt and rust. Louis walked around to the driver’s seat door and slowly pulled it open. It creaks loudly, probably because it hasn’t been opened since Uncle Harry’s second year. We look inside and discover that the interior has been preserved surprisingly well; besides a layer of dust it’s not disgusting or anything. Unfortunately, there are no keys in the ignition.
I curse loudly, “Now what the fuck are we supposed to do? We can’t drive the car without keys. We’re fucked!”
“Wait, no, I know how to jump start,” Louis gently pushes past me, making sure to mischievously look me in the eyes as he does so. He goes down below the steering wheel and gets straight to business.
Sure enough, I soon hear a heavy rumbling sound emanating from the Anglia; Louis had done it.
“Should I be asking how on earth you know how to jump start a car? Or will that information result in someone busting a cap in my ass?”
Louis shrugs, a cute little smile on his face, “Sometimes, when James and I get really bored, we find muggles’ cars and go for… joyrides. It’s kind of fun. I just like putting the car back exactly how we found it; I usually even fill up the tank for them.”
Of course. Leave it to Louis to be a Good Guy Car Thief, “Well, erm, you learn something new every day. I guess today is the day I learn that my boyfriend is a fan of committing grand theft auto. At least you’re very polite about it.”
“The whole car-stealing thing is mostly James,” he admits, “But it really came in handy now, didn’t it?”
I roll my eyes, but smile as I get into the passenger seat of the car. I guess this was the closest thing to a “bad boy side” Louis would ever get, and I secretly kind of thought it was fabulous. This is all of the bad boy I need.
Louis puts his hands on the wheel and takes a deep breath, turning to look at me, “You ready?”
“I think you under exaggerated earlier when you said this was a bizarre first date…”
“Where are you going?” Louis tries to catch up to my swift paste as I make a detour towards my bedroom.
We’d just endured a four hour drive that included witty banter, redundant games of I-Spy and Twenty Questions, and catchy songs from the seventies playing from cassette tapes I’d found in the glove compartment. Despite the occasional naps we’d take when switching driving shifts, I was dead tired by the time we parked on the roof of the Cauldron.
“You think we can pay for a potion ingredient this rare with pocket lint and some Abba tapes? Okay, the tapes are actually pretty great, but we need money. I have some saved up; it’s hidden in my room.”
He doesn’t reply.
I run into my room quickly and rush over to the rug in the middle of my floor, which I kick aside. I go straight for the creaky board and pry it up with my fingers. Inside is my stash of galleons, “I’m going to take almost all of it with us, but that should do as long as we work together on the haggling.”
“What do you have all of this saved up for, anyways?” he asks as he helps me carefully put the floorboard back down and arrange the rug over it again.
“I was hoping to be able to afford a nice flat after seventh year. However, something is telling me that my best friend’s life is a bit more important.”
“Oh,” Louis looks guilty for even asking, but I give him a reassuring smile. It doesn’t seem to help much.
“What are you guys doing here? And at one in the morning?” Scotty asks us with a shocked expression as we stumble down into the bar.
Louis quickly replies, “I’m sorry, Scott, but there’s not really time to explain. Trust me when I say it’s for a good cause. We’ll be out of here shortly, anyways.”
Not waiting for a response, we run out of the Cauldron and leave behind a flabbergasted Young Scotty.
Wasting no time, we sprint up and begin banging on the doors of the apothecary next door.
After about five minutes of noisiness, some lights finally flicker on and the door creaks open. A young guy, maybe a few years out of Hogwarts, opens the door. He’s not very tall or thin in the slightest, but he seems nice enough.
“What the actual fuck do you two want?” Okay, maybe not.
“Sorry to wake you, sir,” Louis says, “But we need some Arnican Syrup. It’s a matter of life or death.”
He squints up at Louis, and then over to me. His eyes make me remember very quickly that I’m still wearing that stupid bra of Rose’s, and I instinctively pull Louis’s jacket tighter around myself.
“That won’t come cheap. How much money you got?”
I empty my pockets and show him my life saving life’s savings.
He steps aside, “Alright, alright, come in.”
We step inside to the musty apothecary and I set my money down on the table. Louis grabs my hand and gives it an assuring squeeze, though I have a feeling it’s mostly out of dislike at the way the man had looked me up and down earlier.
“My names Frichard, by the way,” the man says as he searches through some cabinets.
“You mean Richard?” Louis asks politely.
“No,” Frichard grunts, “I mean Frichard.”
“Oh,” Louis seems to need a minute to do some heavy thinking about this.
“So, Frichard,” I decide to change the subject, “Do you live here alone?”
Frichard begins to very delicately transfer a liquid from one vial to a seemingly identical one using an eye dropper, “No, my mum lives upstairs. But she usually just sleeps all the time. Either that, or play with her cats. Boy does she love ALL of those cats. You, know, the other day one of them had kittens? One of the other cats got jealous and ate the whole litter. Guess who has two thumbs and had to clean up regurgitated kitten?” Frichard uses his two thumbs to point at himself, “This guy!”
Err, well then. That’s not scarring or traumatizing in the least.
“Anyway,” Frichard continues before Louis or I have to say anything in response to literally the worst story I think I’ve ever heard, “Your Arnican Syrup needs to breath for a few hours before it’s safe to travel with. I recommend coming back at dawn. Hey, shouldn’t you kids be in school?”
I’m terrified for a second, but then Louis quickly picks up my slack with angel-like laughter, “Why do people always think we look like teenagers? Oh, no, I’m twenty-two and she’s twenty-one.”
“Well then,” Frichard smiles flirtatiously, “If you need a place to stay for the night, you can stay here.”
“Err, we’re um, together,” Louis says, obviously trying not to let his cute little jealousy show.
Frichard winks at Louis, “I’m flexible.”
“Okay then,” I immediately say, “Erm, no thank you. We really can’t, thanks for the offer though! We’re going to be staying at this lovely place next door called the Leaky Cauldron.”
“Eh, that place is a shithole.”
“Excuse me?” I twitch a bit, and Louis holds my hand tighter to remind me of where we are.
“I heard the lady that used to run it has been around the Alley a few times, if you catch my saying. Anyhow, the new kid they have managing it does well enough. I bet he doesn’t give you the same kind of hospitality ol’ Mrs. Longbottom did, eh eh?” Frichard laughs and winks.
I take a deep breath, trying to keep my cool. Louis’s hand is squeezing mine to the point that I think it has lost circulation, but it’s probably the only thing keep me from lunging at Frichard.
“Yes, well we’re good friends with one of the locals there so that’s where we’ll be staying,” Louis says.
For the first time, Frichard eyes us suspiciously, “What do you two need Arnican Syrup for anyways?”
Louis answers, “A Nightmarish Coma remedy.”
“Who do you know that’s stuck in one of those?”
“Actually,” I calm my temper and decide to start helping Louis in our deception again, “Our wedding day is in a week or so and our harpist is pregnant. She thought it’d be fun to go and have dreams about loves and desires and all that crazy stuff, and now we’re here spending the entire flower budget on some kind of weird syrup!”
Louis grins widely, and Frichard’s suspicions seem to go unconfirmed.
“We ought to get going, then,” I continue, “That room at the Cauldron isn’t going to occupy itself! See you tomorrow, Frichard.”
We hurry out of there, rushing to be away from Frichard’s beady eyes. Once we’re out we start laughing, and continue so the whole walk back to the Cauldron.
“Gosh, Louis,” I giggle, “Frichard sure did find your physique delicious.”
He’s still just grinning at me.
“What?” I ask, feeling my face to see if there’s something stuck to it.
“Oh, nothing,” he says, but then starts singing in a mocking tone, “Chase wants to marryyyy me, You want to marryyyy me!”
“Shut it! I only said that to further discourage him from forcing us into an orgy with him and his mother’s cannibalistic cats.”
“Sure, whatever you say. Do you really want a harpist at our wedding? I think that a bit tacky.”
I decide not to dignify that with a response.
“Alright, you two,” Scotty immediately stops us once we walk in, “You have a lot of explaining to do.”
We look at each other nervously, but somehow we telepathically decide to just tell Scott the truth. In his flowing Louis way, Louis tells the entire story.
“But there’s no vacancies tonight, what with the Tortoise Enthusiast Convention in town,” Scotty says.
I laugh, “Scotty, you do realize I live here? Unless you’ve rented my room out, I’m pretty sure we have a place to stay for the night.”
“Both of you? In your bedroom? You guys know I would usually trust you with something like that but Neville’s my boss and I don’t think he would be too ecstatic if he found out I let that happen.”
“Oh,” I realize his meaning, “Sorry, I hadn’t even thought about it like that.”
“I would sleep on the floor, anyways,” Louis suggests innocently.
Scott sternly crosses his arms.
“Fine, if we can’t stay here I guess the two of us can just take up in the Anglia for the night,” I shrug manipulatively, “I think there was a Barry Manilow tape in there—“
“Okay, okay,” Scotty gives in, “But only because I trust Louis on this. Sorry, Chase, but I’ve been in on those M.B.F.I.t.G.o.M.D Club meetings. I heard about how Danny had to buy a new belt.” Oh, great. Why did he have to bring up the belt in front of Louis?
“Don’t worry, you’ve kind of destroyed the mood for me now anyways,” Louis says glumly.
“See? Don’t worry about it. Not only is Louis all about honor and what not, but now he’s disgusted by the thought of me trying to jump Danny! If you’ll excuse us, we have to go get ready for bed, have a gigantic argument, and then go to sleep angry. Goodnight, Scotty!” I smile at him and start up the stairs.
And three, two, one…
“What was that about Danny’s belt?” Louis is climbing up the stairs behind me.
“Remember when you got all mad about me flirting with Danny in the library, and I got angry and went on a Wonderboy snogging rampage? Well, erm, I may have attempted some things and damaged his belt in the process. Hey, we had that fight in your bedroom! I remember because I just imagined the most comforting place I could think of. I sure didn’t imagine Danny’s bedroom, I’ve never even been in Danny’s bedroom, let alone sleep in it!” I find some blankets in the hall closet and throw them at Louis.
“Yeah, when were you sleeping in my bedroom again…? Wait, what? Stop trying to change the subject! What did you do with Danny?”
I start helping Louis to set up his little sleeping are on my floor, “Oh, get over it. You know I would have told you if anything had happened. Boyfriend or not, you’re still one of my best friends and I still tell you everything. I didn’t tell you this because, like I said, nothing happened. Something almost happened, but only because I was mad at you. And you want to know why it didn’t happen? Because I said your name.”
Louis stops in his tracks, “You said my name? Like, in the moment?”
He starts to laugh a bit, “You were kissing Danny, and you said my name?”
“Grow up,” I roll my eyes again and go into the bathroom to change into my pajamas.
“I’m sorry, Chase,” he tells me through the door, “But how would you feel if—“
I throw the door open, “If you ask me how I would feel if you had done the same with Macey, I swear to Merlin I will throw you out to room with Frichard for the night.”
I look at the clock. Again. It’s still one in the morning. And, no matter how tired I am, I still can’t sleep.
“Louis?” I whisper.
“Are you awake?”
“Partially, I suppose.”
“Come up here.”
He’s awake now, “Chase, you know Scotty said not to—“
“Get over yourself, I don’t mean for that. I can’t sleep.”
There’s no response for a second, but then he says, “I’m sorry. You know I would usually be there for you in a heartbeat but I promised to stay on the floor.”
“Oh,” I think for a second, “I didn’t promise to stay on the bed.”
He doesn’t say anything, so I crawl to the foot of my bed. Before I can carefully climb off, however, I lose my footing and fall straight onto Louis.
“Sorry! Sorry! I fell!”
“Merlin, you scared me,” he laughs, “Are you alright?”
“I think so. Slightly bruised elbow, but no casualties. You?”
“I’m fine,” he puts an arm around me, “I’m letting you sleep down here, but only sleep. Capiche?”
“Capiche,” I giggle. He smells really good. Like cinnamon and happiness and freshly cut wood. Heh, that rhymed.
“Wood and good rhyme,” I start giggling some more.
He turns his head and in the dark I see him looking at me, “Oh no, not phonetics. Go to sleep. Now.”
“Can’t a girl make a joke about phonetics around here without being questioned?”
“Not if that girl has insomnia.”
“Hey, I have insomnia.”
“What’s bothering you so much?”
Ugh. He knows me way too well, “What Frichard said.”
“About the regurgitated kittens? Me too, I’ll probably have nightmares for a week.”
“No, about my mum.”
“The worst part was that everything he said was true.”
He wraps his arms around me a bit more tightly, “Your mum is a good person. You and I know that. But sometimes… People get pushed to a point where they think that if they don’t do things primarily for themselves then nothing will get better. She started doing what she wanted to do because she felt trapped and needed to be in control of something. Either way, her daughter turned out to be fantastic.”
I don’t know what to say to that. Instead, I crawl up closer to him until our faces are just inches apart. His breath smells like caramel, and he doesn’t seem to mind the closeness, so I close the gap between us. Pressing my mouth against his, our lips start to move in rhythm with each other and I find myself surprised that he hasn’t stopped me. Maybe he’s too tired to follow the rules. My hands move up and twist themselves into his hair, and he pulls my body closer to his. The kiss gets deeper and deeper, until my senses are so heightened that I can hear both of our heartbeats.
He groans and pulls away, moving me onto my side of the floor, “Chase, we can’t do this. You know that.”
“We don’t have to do anything. Let’s just kiss some more.”
He groans again, “Woman, you will be the death of me. You need some sleep, and so do I. We have a long day ahead of us tomorrow.”
“Fine. But Louis?”
“Will you hold me again?”
A/N: Yeah… so it’s been a while since I’ve written xD sorry guys, but not only am I at a very tough writing point in the story but school has just started up again for me and it’s really difficult to find time for writing. Please forgive me!! Anyways, as an apology my next chapter will be this same chapter but from Maylin’s point of view, and will center around her relationship with James. I hope you like it! Keep reading and reviewing! x
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