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Chapter 1 : In Which A Date
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The day of Valentine’s day Hogwarts’ students did one of the three things: go on a date, have an ex-boyfriend burning ritual (no, they didn’t burn their exes, they burned the stuff their exes gave them), or pretend it was a normal day. Albus Potter was neither. No, he was currently asleep with his friend, Joey, yelling at him to get up.
“Potter!” Joey had gotten tired of using Albus’ first name to wake him up so he called Albus by his famous surname.
“Mate! I swear if you don’t get up in ten seconds, the whole school will find out about what happened with Susie Perkins!” Hearing this, Albus was up in a flash. He sat up in his bed, rubbing his hand lazily across his face. He had no idea why Joey had gotten him up this early. He glanced at the clock that sat on his nightstand; it was only 10:15.
Albus looked up to see that Joey had his arms crossed over his chest, an annoyed expression on his face. If you looked closely though, you could see some amusement dancing in his dark brown eyes.
“What?” groaned Albus, sleep laced into his voice.
“Do you know what day it is?” questioned Joey, his left eyebrow raised.
“A day in February?” yawned Albus.
“The fourteenth to be exact.”
Albus took a moment to comprehend this information before he yelled, “Shit!” He continued to mutter curse words under his breath as he ran to the bathroom.
As this happened, Joey shook his head in amusement. Albus wasn’t usually the type to be late for a date.
Ten minutes later, Albus took a quick look at the mirror and ran out of the dorm, the sound of his feet echoing as he went.
Emmalyn Ford didn’t know why she agreed to go on this date. She had never really interacted with Albus Potter before so why did a ‘yes’ come out of her mouth when he asked her? He didn’t even ask her in a special way. All he said was seven plain words: “Will you go to Hogsmeade with me?”
Yet, she said yes. And at the moment she was beginning to regret it. It was already 10:29 am and he still hadn’t shown up. Granted the date was supposed to start at 10:30 but weren’t you supposed to show up early?
The twenty-nine on Emmalyn’s watch turned to a thirty. Sighing, she straightened her back to make herself stop leaning on the wall. She turned around to leave; however, just a few feet away from her stood Albus Potter.
His jet-black hair wasn’t in every which way as usual but wasn’t exactly what you call flat. He wore a button up, khakis, and a pair of designer shoes. Not bad, thought Emmalyn but when her blue eyes landed on his empty hands, she frowned. There were no roses or any sort of flower with him and nor did he have a box of chocolates… on Valentine’s day.
He strolled up to her, his (empty) hands now tucked into his pant pockets. “Hey,” he breathed.
“Hey,” Emmalyn greeted with a forced smile. They stood there at the entrance of the Great Hall for a few seconds before Albus finally spoke.
“Shall we go?” Emmalyn nodded, her plastered smile only grew though her thoughts resembled: How rude! No sorry for being late!
They both started to make their way out of the castle but not before the thirty on Emmalyn’s watch struck thirty-one.
Albus Potter wasn’t sure if he was an idiot or not. Forgetting about his date? On Valentine’s Day? Who does that?
He took a peek at the blonde next to him. She was pretty with her light blue eyes and silky hair but she was short. Albus couldn’t help wonder if she even reached five feet.
He shifted his focus to the path they were taking. They had gotten out of the carriage minutes earlier and were now wandering down the streets. His stomach all of a sudden let out a growl.
Emmalyn had heard since she peered over at him. His cheeks coloured a little but he waved the embarrassment off by saying, “I haven’t had breakfast yet. Would you mind if we went to a shop to get some?”
She shrugged, an uninterested look on her face. Albus led her through the crowd of lovestruck students and entered the nearest food-selling shop he could find which ended up being Brews and Stews Café.
The shop was one that had a blue and gray colour scheme. Most of the tables were empty and the one that wasn’t had an old married couple occupying it. The decoration wasn’t bad but it wasn’t too good either. And the foral wallpaper on the walls gave the place an old feel.
Emmalyn’s eyes widened when she noticed a spider web in one corner. She shivered in horror and disgust. What kind of place had Albus taken her to?
Albus took note of Emmalyn’s reaction and pulled out a chair from the table nearest to him. She sat down while he went to get a menu from the counter.
When he came back, he handed his date one and kept one for himself. Emmalyn stared at the menu in front of her. She wasn’t focused on what was written on it though since she was too busy stuck in her own thoughts.
He hadn’t ate breakfast? Did that mean woke up only half an hour ago? Did he really get ready for our date that fast? Or does that mean… no… he forgot!
She frowned and kept ranting in her head.
How could he forget our date? I mean I know he doesn't like me like that but it’s Valentine’s day! How can you forget your date with your Valentine?! Wait… am I his Valentine? Or am I just some random date?
Her eyes then suddenly made its way back to the spider web she had seen earlier.
Oh gosh! Does this place have spiders? I hate spiders. Okay, calm down Emmalyn… this is a date! Woman up! Wait… does that even make sense?
“Huh?” Emmalyn jumped in her seat. She had been so absorbed in her thoughts that she hadn’t realised that Albus had been staring at her.
“Your order?” Albus asked.
Emmalyn blinked, not comprehending anything Albus had just said.
“Emmalyn?” Albus watched his date, unsure of what was going on. Was she deaf or something, he wondered.
“Sorry! Lost my train of thought. What did you ask?” Emmalyn’s cheeks were now pink. She was so distracted by the eyelash on Albus’ cheek she hadn’t heard what he had said. His eyelashes were very curled, she noted. Her eyes widened. Am I going out with a guy who curls his eyelashes? How did I not notice before! I am going out with… She gasped. A girly guy!
Albus continued to observe her. He was an attentive person so the staring at his cheek, eyes widening, and weirdly horrified look in Emmalyn’s eyes hadn’t gone past him. The hell is going on. What is with this chick? First she doesn’t listen to me and then she’s staring at my cheek like there is something wrong with it! Wait… was there something wrong with it?
Albus wiped at both of his cheeks and when he looked back his fingers, a stray eyelash lay on one of them. An eyelash. Well that’s nothing.
Albus was about to wave the eyelash off when he came to a realisation. Wait a minute… did this chick look at me weirdly because of a freaking eyelash? Am I spending my Valentine’s day with an eyelash-obsessed freak?
This time it was Albus’ turn to widen his eyes but unlike Emmalyn, he had the guts to confront her about it. “Are you staring at me because of an eyelash?”
Emmalyn’s eyes snapped onto his green ones immediately. “What! No! Why would you think that?”
“Because you were.” Albus for some reason enjoyed seeing the girl across from him flustered and nervous. It was what made him a Slytherin; he liked making people squirm. And that was what she did: squirm under his intense, amused gaze.
“No, I wasn’t!” she argued.
“Yes you were,” Albus said plainly with a knowing expression on his pretty face.
“No, I really wasn’t!” Emmalyn then did the thing all snooty girls did when they were caught: she crossed her arms over her chest and stuck her button nose in the air in defiance.
“Really?” Albus got an idea. If she wasn’t bothered by his eyelashes, then she wouldn’t mind if he blinked them repeatedly.
This action made Emmalyn lean back in her seat. She gasped, “You do curl your eyelashes, don’t you?”
This took Albus by surprise. “What?”
She pointed at him as if she caught him doing something despicable. “You curl your eyelashes!”
“No, I don’t!” Albus couldn’t understand this girl. First, she was looking at him as if he was some sort of strange animal and now she was accusing him of curling his eyelashes which he certainly did not.
“Oh and am I to believe that those eyelashes are naturally that girly?” Emmalyn couldn’t believe the bloke sitting across from her. She couldn’t understand why he would lie to her when it was clear that he did, infact, curl his eyelashes. If there was one type of people she couldn’t stand, it was liars. And Albus Potter was, in her book, certainly a liar.
“Yes, girly! Your eyelashes are girly!”
“My eyelashes aren’t girly.” Albus touched his eyelashes to make sure he was right.
Emmalyn’s lip twisted in wonder. He seemed to be telling the truth but the fact still stood that his eyelashes were girly, whether he wanted to believe it or not. She sighed, not wanting to keep talking about eyelashes all day. “You know what? Just leave it. Let’s just get some food.”
Albus nodded and glanced at the table, one thought running through his head: Quirky, she’s definitely quirky.
An hour later, the not love-struck couple were wandering the streets of the village again. Albus was currently kicking a pebble as far as he could which caused Emmalyn to roll her eyes. How immature, she reflected.
Ten minutes passed with no words spoken between them. That is ‘til Albus yelled, “Hey Scorpius!”
The blonde in question smiled back at his friend and his date narrowed her eyes at Albus. “Oh! He gets a hello and I get nothing?” The date of the blonde was actually Albus’s cousin and her tone was a joking one.
Albus waved at his cousin, Rose, and she waved back. Emmalyn watched this gesture and finally had her first positive thought on her date, how sweet!
They kept walking in silence before Albus asked something.
“Have you heard of those rhymes?”
“You know those rhymes that start with roses are red and all.”
Emmalyn knew what he was talking about and nodded. “Yeah, last year my friend and I spent Valentine’s Day making up funny ones.”
“Really?” Albus was shocked. He had pinned down Emmalyn as a snooty type not one with a sense of humour.
“Okay, I want to hear one.”
“Hmm.. roses are red, violets are blue, why does your face resemble a shoe?” Emmalyn had a grin on her face.
“Nice. Let’s see… roses are red, violets are blue, why is it that I can never joke with you?”
Emmalyn’s eyebrows shot up but she had already thought of another one. “Roses are red, violets are blue, a little kid saw you and said ew.” Albus grinned in approval.
“Roses are red, violets are blue, you hit four feet at the age of nine and never grew.” Albus was starting to enjoy this, especially when Emmalyn’s icy eyes narrowed.
With a mischievous smirk, she rhymed, “Roses are red, violets are blue, your ex-girlfriend said you were a bad screw.”
Albus whistled in appreciation. Damn, she’s got sass, he thought. The two carried on with their rhymes, hiding little snippy comments in them as they kept going but neither of them got offended in the slightest.
Albus was actually enjoying the dwarf-height (she was actually five feet but Albus didn’t think that was true) girl’s company when the thought of lunch hit him. They both discussed on where to go and decided on the Three Broomsticks Inn.
Albus held the door open for her and she entered. They both pushed their way through the crowd. The pub was packed at this time of day. They both placed their orders at the counter. While they waited, Albus took the time to look around for anyone familiar. After some searching, he spotted Rose and, the blonde from earlier, Scorpius. There was an empty table next to them. Right then, the bell rang to signal that their order was ready.
They grabbed their orders and Albus led the way to the table.
As they neared, Albus' attention shifted to Rose's strong grip on her drink. Soon he reached his destination and everything after that happened in slow motion.
Rose threw her drink at Scorpius in anger. Scorpius had the logic to duck and the drink fell on Emmalyn. Rose then left in a hurry and Albus' mouth dropped open.
Emmalyn spat out the butterbeer that had entered her mouth, took a glance at the two boys standing in front of her and left.
Scorpius and Albus looked at each other and they both ran out after their dates like true gentlemen should.
It took the dark-haired boy fifteen minutes to find her and when he did, he was surprised to see that she wasn't crying. Instead, she was heading to the castle, squeezing her hair out as she went.
"Emmalyn!" She didn't stop.
"Emmalyn!" He chased after her and when he reached her, he blocked her path.
"What Albus?" Her lips were tugged down and for some reason, Albus didn't like that one bit.
"I just wanted to know how you are," he replied, head bent over in shame.
She then turned on her heel to leave.
She halted in her tracks and twisted around to face him. He took careful steps towards her, scared that she would run off. Once they were only an inch apart, he grabbed her by the waist and planted his lips firmly on hers. They stood there for a few seconds before she pulled away. Emmalyn slowly pried his hands off her, gave him a small smile, and made her way back to Hogwarts.
Later, when Albus came back to the common and threw himself on the couch, Joey inquired, "So how was your date?"
Albus shook his head.
"Not good then?"
"Are you sad?"
Albus inclined his head up to reply this time. With a shrug he said, "Nah, she was a bad snog anyway."
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