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Chapter 42 : The One With The Sleepover
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“When’s that little friend of yours going to come over?” Darryl asked, throwing himself down onto the sofa next to me and putting his legs over my lap. I rolled my eyes, but kept his legs there as I carried on reading.
“What little friend?” I had no clue who he meant; I didn’t have friends shorter than me.
I felt my stomach twisting at the name. Of course, my family would ask where she was; they thought that we were still best friends and she would often come over during the holidays.
“She won’t be,” I said softly, hoping that he didn’t hear the hurt in my voice. “We’re not friends anymore.”
“You’ll make up again, you two are always falling out,” Darryl told me, and I wish that it were as simple as that.
“You didn’t fall out over James did you?” Darryl asked suspiciously, and I could hear the hard edge to his tone.
“Was there anything you actually wanted?” I turned to look at him, putting my comic book down, and raising my eyebrows at him.
“I can’t sit with my favourite little sister and ask how she is without an ulterior motive?”
“Not you, no.”
Darryl tried to look offended, but it failed because a smile split across his face. “I just missed you, that’s all. If you tell anyone though, I’ll deny it.”
I shook my head and opened the comic book so that I could ignore him. Darryl hated when I ignored him, and proceeded to poke me until I gave a grumble in reply.
“When can I meet James?” Darryl asked as he moved, his leg digging into my knee painfully.
“Why?” I asked, pushing him away, but he put his legs back on me.
“Because I’ve heard a lot about him, and I want to know if he’s good enough for you.”
“You’re not going to scare him off are you?” I asked, knowing what Darryl was like. He was the same with our eldest sister, and any potential boyfriend she has.
“I just want to get to know him, that’s all. If I happen to mention that if he hurts you I’ll break every single bone in his body, then I can’t be held responsible.”
I rolled my eyes at the idea that my brother could hurt anyone.
“You won’t hurt him. I won’t let you.”
Darryl scoffed as he shook his head and plucked the comic out of my hands, throwing it onto the other sofa and earning a glare from me.
“As if you could hurt me.”
I reached my arm up, attempting to put him into a headlock that he knew was coming. He blocked my attack, ducking his head, and shoving me in the side to escape. I laughed as he grabbed for my hands and used the momentum to shove me off the sofa. Getting up from the floor, I jumped on top of him, causing him to let out a loud groan of pain, and I punched as much of his arm as I could reach.
“Children, you know the rules, no fighting in the house. Your mother won’t stand for it,” dad told us, coming into the room and watching us. He was shaking his head in a mock scold, but his eyes were alight with humour.
“Mum’s not here.” Darryl grabbed my arm to pull it behind my back, but I dug my knuckles from my free hand into his ribs. “Ow, that hurt.”
“In that case, best not to fight on the sofa. Move it to the floor, and try not to break anything. She’ll know if we repair it. Did you give Abigail the letter that came for her?”
I pushed Darryl in the face, and away from me, holding my hand out expectantly as I sat up straight. “Why didn’t you say that I had mail?”
“Because it might be from your boyfriend, and I wanted to check it first to make sure it’s appropriate.”
“Dad!” I cried, turning to look at my father, who was smirking.
“Don’t worry, I’ve memorised James’ writing. This one isn’t from him.” He stopped laughing at the look I was giving him. “I’m only joking, Abi, I wouldn’t do that.”
“Here’s your precious letter,” Darryl stated reaching into his pocket and pulling out a crumpled letter. I snatched it from him and moved away before he could take it from me. “Dad, she really hurt my arm.”
“And you really deserved it.” Dad reached for Darryl’s collar, pulling him up to his feet. “Shouldn’t you be getting ready for work? Leave Abigail alone.”
“Dad, is it alright if my friend comes over later?” I asked, looking up from Isabella’s letter to wait for his response.
Once he agreed, I rushed off to write back to Isabella, excited that I would be seeing her.
It felt strange to have Isabella in my house, especially when the only other friend I had round was Michelle. I hoped that my dad liked her. I was glad that Darryl had gone to work – something that I was still trying to process.
“Hi, I’m Isabella,” Isabella had a charming smile on her face, hand held out in front of her to shake my fathers. “Is it alright if Abigail comes to stay at mine tonight?”
My dad shook her hand, amusement dancing in his eyes and I knew that she had won him over instantly. With Michelle it took a while, because my dad always thought that there was something strange about her, something he couldn’t quite put his finger on. He was right in the end.
I hadn’t been able to see anyone of my friends until the third week of the holidays, mainly due to spending time with our families, or going on holiday like James, who was on holiday in Portugal for a week.
It was the longest that I had gone without seeing them, or speaking to them, and I missed them all. Especially James, who I had barely spoken to all week apart from a postcard sent from him saying that he wished I were with him.
I missed his face, but thankfully, he was due back in the country today, so I was excited about hearing from him.
“Of course she can,” my dad told Isabella, causing us to both giggle and clap in excitement like the teenage girls that we were. “Where do you live?”
“I live in one of the flats above Slug and Jiggers in Diagon Alley. Our friend Sian is going to be joining us later on, and I wanted to have a sleepover. I’ve missed having Abigail around, if I’m being honest. She keeps me out of trouble.”
I hardly thought that I was the one keeping her out of trouble. If anything I’m the reason she had so many detentions the past year.
“Did you need me to take you?” dad offered, lifting his cup of coffee to his lips and taking a sip.
“No need, Sir,” Isabella said happily. “I can apparate us. I got my licence before we left school.”
“Congratulations, Abigail can’t take hers until after her birthday in a few days.
In that case, I’ll get back to work and leave you both to it,” he walked around the counter, cup in his hand, and pressed a kiss to my forehead on his way to the kitchen door. “I’ll leave you some money on the counter whilst you go and get your things.”
“You should go to sleep. You look exhausted,” I scolded, knowing that my dad had been up all night. He waved a hand to show that he heard me, before walking from the room and leaving us behind.
“Does your dad work nights?” Isabella asked, turning to look at me.
“Kind of,” I stated, head tilting slightly to the left as I gave a small shrug.
“He stayed up all night working on the latest issue of Minister of Destruction.”
“That comic book that you and James love?” she said slowly, sounding like she hoped that she had the information correct.
“One of them.” I stood up from the stool I was sitting on and headed out of the kitchen. Isabella followed behind me. “He’s deadline is in the next few days for the Minister of Magic, and he still hasn’t finished it.”
“That’s not good.”
We walked up the stairs and headed to my bedroom. Snowball looked up once we had entered the room; he gave a small meow in our direction before going back to his nap on my bed.
“He’ll get it done in time, he always does. After quite a few sleepless nights, though,” I told her. It was my dad’s routine, which had worked for him for years, apparently. He would spend the night and most of the morning shut away in his office, head bent down over his desk and work until he was finished. It was why I spent so much of my time in there with him, learning everything that I could and hoping to pick up some tips from him when it came to my own. I had learnt the spells to make the pictures move before I even started Hogwarts, having seen it repeated continuously throughout my childhood.
“I just wanted to warn you,” Isabella said in a quiet voice, and I turned to look at her curiously, as I searched for my pyjamas. Snowball had moved to curl up on her lap, and Isabella had a mischievous glint in her eyes as she stroked his fur.
“I’ve got a stash of alcohol for us to get through.”
This was going to be nothing like the sleepovers that Michelle and I ever had. I was excited.
“So, Abigail, I’ve been wanting to ask you,” Isabella stated, shifting so that her legs moved underneath her, sipping at the alcohol in her glass and giving me a look that had me worried. “When do you think that you and James will do the deed?”
I choked a little on my own drink, wiping my mouth and laughing at my own actions. My head was beginning to feel a little fuzzy as I looked at Sian, who had hit Isabella on the arm, telling her that it was personal and she shouldn’t be asking questions like that. I didn’t mind. I liked that I had friends that I would want to have conversations like this with, months ago you wouldn’t catch me even thinking about talking to Michelle about something so private.
“Oh, come on, you all know about my sex life.” Isabella held a hand up in defence. “I’m just curious.”
“Not everyone is comfortable talking about it like you,” Sian reminded her, eyebrows raised high as Isabella shrugged. I was thankful that she would come to my defence and try to not put me on the spot. She was a good friend.
“I know that, and that’s why I talk about mine so that you know that if any of you have any questions about things, that you can talk to me. I’m not a slut for nothing.” Isabella joked as Sian laughed.
“I don’t think that you’re a slut,” I said, shaking my head. Isabella reached for my hand and squeezed it.
“Thanks,” she smiled, holding her glass out for Sian to refill. “I just want you to know that any question you have about it all, you can come to me. There is no question that’s too embarrassing.”
“I’m just –“ I began, biting at my lower lip in worry. I took another drink to try to get more courage, looking down at my hands as my friends waited for me to speak.
“It’s alright, Abigail, anything you say to us won’t go any further then this room,” Sian told me encouragingly. I trusted them completely; I just had no idea how I would begin speaking about the things that were worrying me.
“I’m nervous that James expects it from me soon, because we’ve been dating for nearly six months now.”
“Don’t rush into anything until you’re ready,” Isabella told me, reaching for a few sweets from the bowl in front of us.
“I won’t, I know that.” I took another drink, the warm feeling inside of me growing. “He would never push me into anything, and he’d wait for as long as I want. But, I just worry that I should be doing it.”
“Don’t do anything because others are, you’ve got to live your life how you want. If you want to wait a few days, that’s your choice, if you want to wait thirty years, then good for you!”
I ran my fingers over my lips, which were slightly numb, and thought about James.
“I’ve been thinking of doing it on our year anniversary,” I mumbled, they heard me, and both gave a squeal of happiness that had me smiling wide.
“Oh, that is so adorable,” Isabella cried, clapping her hands as Sian hugged a pillow and grinned at me. I could feel my cheeks flushing red.
“I am going to give you a crash course on contraception,” Isabella stated, grabbing for my empty glass and filling it back up. When did I finish my last drink? I could barely taste the alcohol in them anymore.
I giggled as Sian commented on Isabella being the expert.
“What about you, Sian? Have you ever –“ I trailed off as Isabella gave me back my glass.
“No, I haven’t met anyone that I would want to do that with, most of the guys our age are jerks, or idiots. I think the exceptions are James, William, and Ethan.”
“They don’t get much better when they get older,” I told her knowingly, reaching for some cheese and onion crisps. “My brother decided to greet me by burping in my face this morning.”
Isabella and Sian burst into laughter, and I couldn’t help but join them.
“I’m glad that I’m an only child,” Isabella stated.
“I thought that my sister was bad.” Sian laughed. “I’d hate to have a brother if that’s what they’re like.”
We continued laughing, eating the food until there was hardly anything left in the bowls.
“I have a question.” Sian stretched out on her stomach and put her head in her hands as she looked at us. “When are you and William going to finally get together?”
“Yes! I would like to know that too,” I said to Isabella, high-fiving Sian once she held a hand up to me. Isabella rolled her eyes and shook her head.
“There’s nothing to say.”
“Like fuck there isn’t,” I cried, throwing my hand across my mouth as they both looked at me with their eyebrows raised, before bursting into laughter.
“Bloody hell, Abigail,” Sian said, as I dropped my hand and laughed with them.
“You’re brilliant,” Isabella grinned at me. “And nothing is going on between us.”
“I have a feeling that someone is lying.” Sian looked at me but nodded in Isabella’s direction.
“We’ve kissed a few times, and other things –“
“You may have also gone to his house a few times since the holidays began – “ Sian continued for her, before stopping quickly and sitting up, she seemed to have processed what Isabella had just said. “Hang on, what do you mean other things?”
Isabella just gave a coy grin, standing up quickly. “Oh, would you look at that,” she said looking down at the empty bowls. “I think we’re out of snacks.”
“Isabella, you can’t leave us hanging like that.”
“I’m getting snacks.” Isabella called as she left the room, “and then we can continue with James and Abigail.”
“That girl is unbelievable,” Sian said with a shake of her head.
“That’s what William said last night,” I joked before I could stop myself. Sian erupted into laughter and I giggled around my drink.
“Isabella, you’re going to be so proud,” Sian yelled loudly so that Isabella could hear her, “you’ve finally corrupted Abigail.”
Isabella joined us a few moments later, her hands empty.
“I still can’t get over just how cute you and James are,” Isabella stated, sitting back down next to me and wrapping an arm around my shoulders. She pulled me closer and seemed to be petting the side of my face. “Waiting until your anniversary is just so adorable. If I ever had a relationship, I would want it to be like yours. You both bring me so much joy.”
“She’s the ultimate Jabigail fan girl,” Sian informed me, as Isabella agreed.
I snorted at the word Jabigail.
“I should probably tell James my plans,” I said as Isabella let go of me and reached for the empty bottle in front of us. “But I don’t know when I’ll see him next.”
“When does he get back from his holiday?”
“Today,” I looked down at my watch, finding it hard to focus on the time. “I think I should send a letter to James,” I stood up, going over to Isabella’s desk to grab a few sheets of parchment and a self-inking quill. The alcohol had given me a lot more confidence and bravado. “To tell him that I love him, and that I think we should have sex on our year anniversary.”
“Yes! We shall help you!” Isabella cheered, Sian agreeing beside her.
“Once we’re done we can go to the shop, because we’ve run out of food.” They both moved closer as I sat back down in the circle. I had to steady myself as I put the parchment down on the floor. This was the best idea I’ve had today.
“Am I missing James too much that I’m hallucinating, or is that James, William, and Ethan?” I whispered, leaning closer to Sian, who was walking beside me. We were walking with linked arms down Diagon Alley, as Isabella skipped on the cobblestones behind us.
Sian looked from me and over to where I was pointing outside Weasley’s Wizarding Wheezes.
“I think it is them,” Sian said, unlinking her arm from mine, and pushing me towards them. “He must have got your letter and wanted to see you! Go and get him.”
“Hey,” I cried happily, running up to James. He turned at the sound of my voice, before readying himself as I jumped at him. He caught me with a laugh, holding me tightly to him, only stumbling a little as I wrapped my legs around him.
“Abigail? What are you doing here?” James asked, lips pressed against my cheek before I moved to press mine against his. I had missed him so much, and it felt so good to be in his arms again.
James chuckled lightly, breaking our kiss and leaning his forehead on mine.. “I’ve missed you too.”
I must have said that aloud, maybe I had had a lot more to drink then I thought.
“Did you get my letter?” I enquired, hand raising up to stroke down his face. He was so tanned, he looked beautiful.
“What letter?” he asked in confusion, letting me go so that I stood on the ground again. I was vaguely aware that we were alone, the others must have gone to the shop already.
“I sent you a letter. I thought that was why you were here?”
He was so adorable when he was confused; I loved the way that his nose scrunched up slightly. I reached up a finger to run down it, giggling.
“Have you been drinking?” James asked me, his hands on my waist. I moved my hands to his arms, before cradling the back of his head and pulling him in for another kiss. By the time we pulled apart, I was breathless, and the others had come back, bags in hand.
“Once you two are quite done, we can get back to Isabella’s,” Ethan stated, holding up two bags, one of them clinking once he moved. “Apparently there’s a sleepover happening, and we’re invited.”
“Won’t your mum mind?” I asked Isabella, turning to look at her.
“Not at all,” Isabella stated as we all began making our way back to her home. James’ hand was warm in my own.
“Is she home?” James asked as I looked around us at the darkened street. It felt so different at nighttime.
“She’s at her boyfriends; she should be home day after tomorrow when she finishes work.”
William stopped outside the door that led to Isabella’s flat and I couldn’t help but wonder how many times he had been here before.
“I have a few games that I think we’ll have lots of fun playing,” William said happily, holding the door so that we could all walk in.
“Hello, Abigail,” William said to me with a wink. “I’m a little sad that James gets all this love and I get nothing.”
I pursed my lips, hand moving to tap William on the side of the face before I hugged him tightly, causing him to stumble backwards into the wall.
“I want in on this hug,” I head Ethan saying, and I felt arms wrap around us, my face was pressed to William’s shoulders.
“I’m not missing out either.” I felt James pressing up behind me as he joined our hug and I couldn’t help but laugh as they all squeezed me tightly. If they didn’t stop, I was going to have the air pushed out of me.
“Come on you lot, this alcohol isn’t going to drink itself.” It sounded like Isabella was at the top of the stairs, but I couldn’t see her.
“Sorry, there’s a group hug. We’ll be up in a minute,” William laughed, and I felt it vibrate against my cheek. I stumbled as they tried to get into the door without letting go, and ended up pushing William to the floor. Ethan grabbed for me to stop me falling, but James wasn’t as lucky as he tripped over Williams’ legs and landed on the stairs.
I didn’t think that I would ever stop laughing.
The sleepover was moved to the front room, as there wasn’t enough space for us all in Isabella’s room. I didn’t mind so much, I was sitting between James legs, back resting against his chest as he sat against the sofa, one hand on his leg whilst the other clutched a drink, which Ethan had mixed for me. We were in the middle of one of William’s drinking games, ‘Never have I ever’, and I was losing spectacularly. You had to take a gulp of your drink if you had done the thing the person said they had never done, which meant that I never drank anything. Although that would probably be considered winning.
I bowed out of the game after a while, and settled for watching it unfold in front of me. It was entertaining to see what my friends had, and hadn’t done, and it seemed that they were trying to say things to get the other to drink.
“I’ve got one,” Sian slurred with a grin, pointing at the rest of us as she pressed her back against the armchair. “Never have I ever seen anyone in this circle completely naked.”
I giggled, looking around at everyone and saw William and Isabella raising their glasses to take a drink. I was surprised when James drank from him, and turned my head to look at his questioningly.
“Who have you seen naked, James?” Isabella asked, “Is it Abigail?”
I shook my head, knowing that he hadn’t, but who else was it?
“Sadly no,” he stated, glancing at me and sticking his tongue out at me. “I’ve seen William naked more times than I’ve seen myself naked. There is literally nothing that boy has hidden from me.”
The rest of us laughed and I turned to see William looking smug, chin lifted proudly.
“Bugger,” Ethan said, bringing his glass up and downing the rest of the liquid. “I forgot about William and his inability to wear clothes. He streaked once and I got an eyeful.”
“As did the Muggles in my neighbourhood,” James said from behind me.
Ethan reached for the bottle beside me, and poured himself another drink as they decided who would go next. I raised my glass to sip at the liquid inside, grinning as I felt James pressing kisses to my neck, hand pressing against the top of my stomach, fingers spreading wide and brushing against the underside of my bra, albeit over my top. I felt my stomach flipping pleasantly and I had to bite my lip to stop from breaking out into a wide grin.
“I’ve got one,” Ethan said after no one else had spoken. It was a struggle to focus my attention on him, and not on what James was doing. “Never have I ever had sex with anyone in the room.”
That got my attention as I looked at Isabella. It seemed that everyone else was doing the same, and the two of them just stared back at us, not moving to drink at all.
“This is cheating,” Isabella stated, shifting from her position on the floor and moving slightly closer to William as she did so. If she moved any closer to him, she would be sitting in his lap. I reached my hand up to cover my mouth, hoping that I hadn’t said that aloud. A quick glance around confirmed that I hadn’t.
“I’m feeling bullied right now,” William sniffed, moving his hand to behind Isabella and leaning on it, legs spreading out in front of him.
Neither of them drank anything, and I wondered if it was true that they hadn’t slept together yet. I was amazed, I thought for sure that they had. A quick look at Sian was all I needed to see that she was thinking the same, she looked shocked.
“I have a feeling that two people in this room should be drinking instead of lying,” James stated, sitting up a bit straighter and pulling me closer to him, fingers moving a bit higher. Not that I was keeping track or feeling excitement fill me whenever he did.
William was shooting James a dark look, and Isabella was shaking her head at William. I couldn’t help but cheer as they raised their glasses, clinked them together, and downed the rest of the liquid.
“When?” Sian demanded instantly, clapping as she moved to sit with her legs underneath her. “Where? I want all the details!”
“All of them?” William asked.”Some are sordid, the others aren’t suitable for such young ears.”
I heard James’ noise of disgust behind me and I giggled again.
“At the beginning of the holidays,” Isabella told us reluctantly, and I wondered why she hadn’t told us about it earlier.
“Why didn’t you tell us?” I sat up straighter, moving away from James and causing his hand to leave my body. I felt his fingers trailing across my back though, so I didn’t mind too much.
“I was going to, I was just too excited about what you said,” Isabella told me, “I didn’t want to steal your thunder.”
“What did you tell her?” James asked from behind me, and I reached a hand down to tap his thigh.
“I wrote it in the letter,” I said, feeling a little hot under the collar, not sure I wanted to say out loud in front of Ethan and William what it contained.
“Ah, the elusive letter.” James’ fingers were moving to my sides, and I jerked at the way it tickled me. “I’ve never been more excited to get post.”
“Shall we play another game?” Ethan asked us all, “I’m sure that we can get the information out of them eventually.”
“Not us,” James stated, and I felt him pressing kisses to the top of my back. “I haven’t seen Abigail in a week, I’m going to go and ravish her in the hallway.”
“Such a gentleman,” I snorted, even though I couldn’t contain my excitement as James stood up and reached for my hand to pull me to my feet. I left my drink behind when I noticed that he hadn’t brought his.
“If you use my bed, don’t have sex in it,” Isabella told us, giving me a wink, and sticking out her tongue at me. I returned it.
“Oh, don’t worry, we’re saving that for William’s bed.” James joked, guiding me out of the room. I barely heard William’s reply as we left.
James walked us towards Isabella’s room, hands not leaving my sides and I couldn’t help the laughter that was escaping me as he tickled me.
“I’ve missed you,” James said as he closed the door behind us and pressed me back against it. My hands moved to behind his neck, as I moved my tongue against his own, fingers rubbing the hair at the nape of his neck. He trailed his hands down my sides, over my hips and down to my legs, grabbing them and lifting me so that I could wrap my legs around him.
“Don’t worry, I won't let you fall," James told me, pressing his body closer to me as his hands moved down to securely hold me. My head was swimming, whether from the kiss or the alcohol, I wasn’t sure, but I would gladly pass out of this was the way it would happen.
Didn't he know that I had already fallen head over heels?
“We have to stop,” James told me breathlessly after a while, although he didn’t make any movement to do so, tongue dancing against my own again. I didn’t care, it felt nice, although I was amazed that he was able to hold me up for so long. I had to be heavy.
He kissed me again, moving his body against mine and making me feel like I was going to turn to mush, before he groaned and let go of my legs so that I could stand normally.
I raised my fingers to trail against my numb lips as I watched James sit down on Isabella’s bed, leaning forwards and staring at me with such a heated look, I was tempted to push him back on the bed and continue kissing him.
“Did you want to go back into the other room?” I asked him, raising my hands to try to flatten my hair, as James watched my every move.
“Let’s give it a minute,” James said, voice sounding strained.
I grinned at his words, realising the effect I had on him.
“Do you think they’re playing spin the bottle yet?” I asked, hoping that it would help James focus on something else.
“It really wouldn’t surprise me if they are.” James gave a laugh, running a hand over his face before standing up. It was a struggle to keep my eyes on him, and not trail over his body.
“I love you,” he said, pressing another kiss to my lips.
“I love you, too.”
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