Operation: Bowtruckles & Bombs

Chasing Dragons & Avoiding Dementors => England => Topic started by: Koi on Mar 03 2019, 02:26 PM

Title: Just a cuppa
Post by: Koi on Mar 03 2019, 02:26 PM
The coffee was weaker and the cream thinner, but they remained open by the grace of ration tickets and the full pockets of soldiers. Sugar was the hardest to come by. Any voucher the family received was set aside for the shop. Daisy hadn't tasted a single granule in what felt like ages.

She wore sensible black flats, a thick line of marker down the backs of her calves, the hem of her still almost emerald skirt hiding the fact that she wasn't wearing actual stockings. Her blouse was white from sunny days on the line, and covered by an apron, the scarf loosely around her neck adding a bit more warmth and color to her ensemble.

She poured coffee for strangers and regulars alike, taking time to chat with them all. Shyest with the soldiers who came and went with such frequency. Most never returned after a week or two. Shipped out to the frontlines, or even back home. The ones on their way back to their families were the worst. Worn down, and often broken. She lingered longest at their tables, trying to cheer their spirits.

Today it was mostly quiet. A few men, too old to join the ranks, reading about the war in the paper. Daisy refilled their cups and promised them sugar next time, just as she always did. They never really wanted it, just to have something to fuss her over. Her mother was cooking eggs in the back, to go on bagels close to stale. The bell jingled, summoning Daisy away from them and to a newly occupied table.

"Good morning!" She called, picking up a new cup and saucer from the side table and bringing it along with her. Head ducking as she set it up on the table, a carefully curled wave of red hair falling against the pink of her cheeks. "Did you need a menu?" Habit and routine keeping her from stammering to a halt, though only just.
Title: Re: Just a cuppa
Post by: Jones on Mar 03 2019, 06:07 PM
If the door had been his own Courtney would have slammed it shut. Since it was not the hinges were spared, and likely the glass in the window panes as well. That did not make the joyful little bell tinkling away as though nothing was out of the usual any less annoying. Frustration overpowering any charm the little cafe might have possessed. Since the place was extraordinarily muggle and he was so engrossed in his own, very grumpy, thoughts he didn’t bother checking for any detection charms.

A bunch of the boys in his cadet class recommended the place. Once he had slipped into a seat Courtney could see why. The waitress was very cute. Which soothed his sour mood by a small margin. Hair only a shade or two redder than her freckled face she came over with a chipper greeting. He nodded and took a glance around the room. There didn’t seem to be any officers higher than himself in the place. Which meant he was probably safe to free a few of the restrictive buttons from his starched collar.

When she swept in with a clean cup he pulled the hat from his head to run fingers through his hair. Accent noticeable and grin unconvincing as it petered around the corner of his mouth he set the cap aside. ”Non, Mademoiselle. Just coffee with milk, please.” Despite the moderate inflection his English was perfect. Raised straddling the channel, he was as fluent in one language as the other.

While she handled the business of filling his cup Courtney adjusted his jacket. He much prefered robes, especially when it came to the strange cut of his battle dress trousers. The pockets were so damned loose! He couldn’t imagine flying his broom in them. An old man across the room gave a phlegmy chuckle as Courtney leaned around the table to watch the waitress walk away. His mucusy amusement called the young man back to attention. But he had seen enough. She was pretty. And he wondered how far down her freckles went.

As he tried to think of a way to break through the small talk and invite her to the cinema he pulled money from his pocketbook. Not noticing that three shiny knuts had snuck their way into his muggle coins. ”How are the eggs, Mademoiselle? They are tempting me now that I smell them.”
Title: Re: Just a cuppa
Post by: Koi on Mar 03 2019, 07:05 PM
Daisy hadn’t learned all her uniforms yet, much less her stripes, pins and medals. There were just so many! And the faces and uniforms she saw changed so often it was hard to keep up. She only knew his was different. Seen less often than others. Her eyes lingered on his collar, as if she could read the truth of his enlistment in the place where it met his skin. Sun darkened, though his throat was lighter than his face.

She only glanced that briefly. A quick meeting of eyes before she bustled elsewhere. His time in the sun apparent in the hands that set aside his hat. ”Of course. Right away.” Accent a little thrill up the false lines of her stockings. She went to fetch the carafe from the counter, handed over along with a sweating pitcher of milk by her father. Daisy smiled at him before she turned back, nose wrinkling at his balding head as he ducked it back behind the newspaper.

Daisy filled his cup, splashing milk into the dark coffee until he’d had enough. He fidgeted as she did, and Daisy couldn’t keep from watching the top of his head. Sadly there were other customers to tend you. The Harris’ from down the street. She leaned on him and he leaned on his cane. Daisy helped the the missus into her seat and her father came around to help settle the old man. She chatted with then while her father gathered their usual, mother bringing the eggs out and plating them.

She went back, still laughing at a terrible joke, to check on her soldier. Air Force, her father had muttered darkly. She hovered at his table side while he dug money from his pockets. ”Oh they’re very good. We’ve two hens in our neighbor still so we’ve fresh extra.” She tipped more coffee into his cup and tapped a knut mixed in with his bobs. ”They won’t take those, however. Father finds the rate of exchange too confusing.”

Her nose was pinker than the shaper she wore beneath her clothes. A soft contrast to the heat in her cheeks. Freckles dark blotches across them. She couldn’t bring herself to wink, but just knew she wanted to be the sort of girl who did. ”I’ll get you some eggs.” She gushed, rushing away again and trying not to smile too giddily. A wizard! What a fancy. She had never known any who had joined the muggle army.
Title: Re: Just a cuppa
Post by: Jones on Mar 04 2019, 07:17 PM
Steam vented up from the mug the pretty waitress poured into. The addition of the milk turning it from pitch to a light shade of brown before he nodded for her to stop. He liked the bitterness of the brewed beans but not the all of the bite. Just as he thanked her again she darted off to tend other customers. Leaving him to snap his mouth closed around  unspoken words. At a nearby table an army private leaned over with a grin, first to inquire about his accent, then to tell him that there was an unwritten rule any serviceman who won a date with Miss Daisy would have to share the details with the rest.

In answer Courtney raised an eyebrow, ”The French are not known for their generosity, chap.” They crowed at him in low whispers, too amused to be offended. Like Courtney they were enjoying a spot of leave from whatever training they were undergoing. After 20 weeks in basic training and flight prep he was halfway through Service Flight. In another 2 months he would have his wings. And orders to join a training squadron on the front lines. Stomach sinking at the thought he reminded himself that he was in a better state than the muggle boys. At least he had a wand if his plane went down.

Flying was his passion, and he found the muggle machines as exhilarating as his broomstick. Nearly. The women were equally impressed at least. But the cadets he was training alongside were much harder to get along with. Which accounted for 75 percent of his current bad mood. Someone had stolen his entire kit while he slipped off base for some ungrated R and R. Since he wasn’t supposed to be out of the barracks he couldn’t very well say he had been. So he’d been robbed, yelled at for not having his gear, and now he had to replace it all out of his own pocket.

The waitress came back, her laughter very much like the doorbell. Except it made him grin where the other had only furrowed his dark brows. He tipped his head towards her as she spoke, in no hurry to free the coins from his pocket. Then was careful to brush his fingertips against her palm as they exchanged hands. She had lovely ”Very well, then, call me convinced. Eggs, and another cup of coffee after this one. Since the service is proving so agreeable.” His smile faltered as she tapped one of the coins he had given her. A flush turning the tips of his ears red as he realized the mistake.

Then the rest of his face a lovely shade of pleased pink as their eyes met over it. She was blushing. Courtney showed her his teeth, too shocked and curious at her remark to fashion one of his own right away. Once his senses caught up he waggled his eyebrows at her, ”Keep it for yourself then, Mademoiselle Daisy.” She was off again, though. A very busy sort of young lady. Leaving him with a dozen questions instead of a gaping mouth this time. Thumb resting at one corner of his mouth he traced his lower lip with a finger. If her father found the wizarding money confusing he must have been a muggle. Which explained the shop. He wanted very badly to know more.

So he waited, outwardly patient except for the silent bobbing of a knee. Coffee slowly drained down before she returned with the plate of eggs. They sizzled over the slice of bagel and a happy red tomato topped the middle. His eyes were on Daisy, however. ”All of these khakis tell me you’ve charmed them mightily but not a one has had the pleasure of taking you out. I can’t resist trying my own luck.” He warned, ”Do you have a break in your shift? To keep a poor airman from eating alone.”
Title: Re: Just a cuppa
Post by: Koi on Mar 06 2019, 02:21 AM
He was a sort. Daisy couldn’t call him the odd kind, even in her head. He was too nice for that. Agreeable and normal-like. But both less brash and less shy than the other young men in uniform. A lot of them flirted, and on occasion, Daisy did a bit if flirting back. But there was always something that turned her away in the end. Made her heart stutter instead if flutter. Probably too many hissed warnings from her parents.

”I’m glad you think so.” Fingers nervously tucking hair behind her ear. Even flustered as she was, she remembered just the way to do it so it didn’t ruin the curls she’d made. Her and her mother spending an evening wrapping them in rags and pretending not to listen to the wireless. Once her fingers were done fidgeting with her hair, they exchanged money, his own dancing across her palm as he dropped coins into her palm.

Cheeks scalding now, Daisy watched his ears turn pink. The red curves standing out stark against his dark hair. She wanted to soothe them back to their normal color but didn’t dare. Eyes meeting just long enough for him to bob his eyebrows at her conspiratorially. It made her bite back a laugh, face turning away to hide it in her shoulder. She swore the whole shop was staring at them. Quickly she tucked the knuts away in the pocket of her apron. ”Just Daisy, please. I’ll be back with your eggs.”

Certainly her father had been watching. Glowering from over his newspaper and swatting at her when she came to collect the eggs. Daisy merely laughed, not half sure she wanted to bring them to his table, but knowing she didn’t not want to, either. She did, of course. He’d paid for them, and her mother wasn’t likely to deliver them herself, having taken a break in her cooking to gossip with a couple of the regulars. Daisy topped off coffees and refilled tea pots as she made her way back, sliding the plate onto his table with a deft hand.

He was waiting. Ready to tease her some more. Smiling she shook her head. Such nonsense. ”I’m sure they’re here for the eggs, you just haven’t tried them yet.” She half glanced at him, eyes warm and laughing before looking too at the other young soldiers. Some watched without a hint of remorse, others talking amongst themselves. It made her want to toss her apron over her head.

”I don’t even know your name!” She told him, voice bouncing with laughter. Daisy was sure her stomach was half way out the door, flying away on a broomstick by the feel of it. She pulled a napkin wrapped fork and knife from her other apron pocket and handed them over. ”My shift ends at three and not a moment before.” She told him quietly, so that no one would over hear.
Title: Re: Just a cuppa
Post by: Jones on Mar 09 2019, 08:39 PM
Courtney laughed for her, since she shyly wiped her own amusement off into the round of her shoulder. His chuckle was soft, filling the space between them without breaching the pleasant atmosphere in the cafe. Head cocking back a fraction his teeth flashed in the sunshine that poured through a window near his seat. Cheeks rounding in a way that hinted strongly at his youth. Their shared knowledge of the world hidden between the notice of muggles making him boyish and Daisy, just Daisy, skitter off towards the kitchen.

He wondered what she was thinking while he had a few thoughts of his own. Watching without watching. Eyes carefully diverted lest her father come around to swat at him with something heavier than a newspaper. What seemed a lifetime later she rounded to his table again. Filling his cup to the rim again she slid the plate of eggs over without spilling a drop of either. He was glad the milk had been forgotten somewhere along the way. It improved the taste but his stomach would only tolerate so much. ”Thank you, Daisy.” He told her, trying the name against his accent with a satisfying drawl on the last vowel.

”Here to have them delivered by such a sweet young lady perhaps.” Courtney tried not to coo, teetering towards the edge of over-flattery. She was just so pretty and shy in a way that pleased him. As if she wanted to be flirted with, but didn’t know how to accept an advance. Shielding her interest behind weak excuses. Or outright lies. In that way of young men Courtney thought himself well known among his fellow witches and wizards. So either she was isolated, or a squib. Either way he joined her laughter with his own before tipping aside her reasoning by solving the problem.  ”Pilot Officer Courtney de Priez of His Majesties Royal Air Force,” He told her in a purposefully serious tone. A wink punctuating his name and prefacing the softer spoken addendum, ”And seeker when the magpies get to fly.” It sounded like nonsense the muggles straining to hear.

But one would be hard pressed to find a soul in the magical realm who did not know at least what a seeker was. So he grinned with youthful confidence that might have been suspiciously close to arrogance. Which was not helped at all by the whisper she slipped his way along with the silverware. ”I won’t be a minute late then.” He promised. Toes wiggling in hidden excitement inside of his boots. Squib or muggleborn he would make it an evening she wouldn’t regret. So he cleared his bit without pressing further but passing furtive grins her way. And left another small tip, this time in all muggle money, before leaving.

And he was there again, in street clothes except for his flight jacket, at exactly two fifty-five. Tipping his hat pleasantly at her father who did not look very happy to see the young airman again.
Title: Re: Just a cuppa
Post by: Koi on Mar 10 2019, 07:31 AM
She was going to die, Daisy was just certain of it. Her name had never in all her life sounded like that! And it wasn’t too often she felt quite so giddy. There had been that one time in particular when John Colton had kissed her in the Hufflepuff coat closet. Really kissed her, just before graduation. ”You’re most welcome.” And he was, because Daisy was getting that sort if feeling all over again and they hadn’t even gotten to the kissing part.

Not that she assumed there would be a kissing part. She was just very much hoping so.

”Now you’re just putting me on.” She teased him, but Daisy was pleased with the compliment. It was her turn to flash a bit of teeth at him, though her smile was not quite so fetching. Cheeks very nearly too red, the heat making her eyes water. She felt ready to come all apart from the attention. And not just his, but she was certain she felt other eyes on them. The other customers watching with interest and she lingered too long and laughed to hard. It all made her feel very put on the spot.

”A please, Pilot Officer.” Daisy put him off as she got herself under control. She tidied his table and breathed the worst of the butterflies out of her stomach. There were plenty and then some left but she didn’t feel like she was choking on them anymore. Courtney was a suiting name for him, she thought. ”How very exciting.” She shot a sharp eyed glance at him. A seeker! She should have known he would be on a quidditch pitch. He seemed just the sort.

She would have to see about these magpies as soon as she got the chance. Hopefully before he came at three. Daisy hid behind a curl as he agreed and cleared her things from his table. ”See that you aren’t!” She demanded before rushing away again. This time she stayed away until it was time to clear away his leftovers. Courtney long gone from through the door. All his grinning and her own blushing see her well and truly teased upon his departure.

The hours flew by. Daisy didn’t even get a chance to sneak upstairs and change her clothes before he was back. Her shift ended and the shop closed up, she had just finished the cleaning - made quicker by discreet application of her wand in case anyone should peek through the blinds - and there he was, standing out front on the side walk. Her father rolled his eyes and stomped up the stairs with a wounded sigh. Thankfully her mother took her broom and apron and lock the door behind her without any such dramatics.

”Montrose!” She cried when she saw him, waving the newspaper she had quickly yanked from an apron pocket before departing the shop. Blushing again, she stopped in front of him with a little laugh and quit waving her Prophet in the air. Though she had been careful to roll it so nothing was wiggling. She was breathless but in good spirits. Delighted he’d actually showed up. And terrified in that delicious sort of way. ”You’re early. I didn’t get time to change.” She explained apologetically. Not that she hadn’t walked out in her work clothes plenty of times. Daisy just wished she’d been able to put on proper heels. She did so love them.

”Its from last season but the team names don’t change.” Smiling, Daisy fell in beside him, twisting her poor old Prophet to death. It was months old, dug out from under her bed during her lunch break. Her father had a tendency to burn any of her wizarding papers so she had been surprised and relieved to find one. ”My father is disturbed by the pictures, so he’s always using them for firestarters.” She thought it really had more to do with some of the things he’d read in them as well. The wizarding world had its own set of troubles.
Title: Re: Just a cuppa
Post by: Jones on Mar 11 2019, 08:25 PM
Courtney dealt with a wide range of personalities on a near constant basis. Most of the ‘very strong’ variety. Which made Daisy rather refreshing. She had not known he was a pilot-in-training, or a quidditch player- let alone one of any notariety. So the blushes, sidelong glances and giggles were all for him. It was very flattering. More so than the blunt types that brushed their bosoms along his arm and pet at the nape of his neck. The way she seemed so flustered by his attention really was a sort of cherry on top. Too endearing to be on purpose, and too adorable not to be endearing. Leaning into the table he teased her back with own own game. ”Just Courtney, please.”

Eyes twinkling in agreement. How very exciting indeed. The excitement carried him through the rest of the morning and tea. Bad mood not forgotten, but put aside for more appropriate expression at a later point. It seemed that Miss Daisy was not the sort to take a date with any man, though none he spoke to seemed surprised (or very happy) that she turned his invitation to share breakfast into a evening out. He had to make sure it was a memorable one.

They were off to a fine start, it seemed, as her father closed the cafe door and locked it pointedly in Courtney’s face. Leaving the young man to grin at his boots while he waited on the curb. When she came out again the older gent was gone, and a sweet faced woman that could only be her mother set the lock back in place. Thumb sweeping over the side of his nose Courtney chuckled into the knuckles of his other fingers. Eyes tracking the flit of her newspaper as she bounded at him with it in hand. ”Yes, yes. Montrose.” He assured her, pleased with the flush of excitement that stained her cheeks.

He did not share her giddy joy but found it quite infectious now that they were face to face. She was pretty as anything, Miss Daisy, and seemed so damned happy to see him again. ”Quite sorry, Mademoiselle, but you did say I had better not be late. I’m very patient,” He was not, though he was rather good at faking it when required, ”if you need more time.” She deserved to get dolled up if she wanted. But he was not so ignorant as to believe that every girl had the means to. Things were not very bad, and a girl with a wand could do more than a muggle. Still, he wanted to give her an easy excuse to accept if she didn’t have going out clothes or make-up to put on, ”You look lovely. And if we go now we can see that American film in the cinema by that Hitchcock fellow. It starts in half an hour.”

Everyone said it was just the right amount of thrilling to make a girl cling to your arm. No reason Courtney shouldn't want to find out. Center of gravity shifting towards Daisy he peeked at the newspaper she was talking about. Watching her nimble fingers wringe it to death as she explained it was old- and destined for a flaming death apparently. ”No, they don’t tend to change. Last season was my first with them, actually. I was hoping to get an offer for one of the national teams but… I like my teammates.” He was muggleborn and politics were as much an issue in sports as they were anything else. ”My mother was very taken back by the pictures the first time. Now she loves when I send her cards that can wave back. She wanted to commision a portrait, but she would show everyone she knows.” He chuckled. Hedging the real question because it was not an easy one to bring up in the current climate. They both had one muggle parent at least. Which probably meant they had similar views to the conflict going on in Germany. Holding a breath in the pit of his stomach he admitted the bit that was most likely to make or break their evening. She would not be the first witch to walk off after hearing he had not pureblood family to mention. He liked this one, though, and tensed for her reaction. ”I’m completely muggleborn. Is it just your father in your house?”
Title: Re: Just a cuppa
Post by: Koi on Mar 14 2019, 06:27 PM
”You’re right, I did.” Daisy quit rattling her newspaper and swept her hair back from her face without breaking the shape of her curls. She smiled up at him, cheek turned toward him. ”No. No it’s okay.” She turned the square toe of her shoe into the sidewalk and hoped he was disappointed that she hadn’t turned out any different than she’d been in the shop. Bobbing agreement as his suggestion, Daisy twirled at his compliment.

”Thank you.” So it was decided. She looked lovely and they were going to see an American film. She couldn’t remember the last time she’d been to the cinema. Daisy carefully matched her stride to his. Her heels wanted to fly away with her and skip down the street to the closet theater. Courtney seemed much more relaxed. Listening to her prattle as they walked, and telling her more about himself in a manner that was inviting and natural. It helped soothe some of the nervous fluttering in her stomach.

”Maybe next season.” She offered helpfully. She wondered if he would prefer a British of French team but was not quite ready to ask such a thing. Chewing her lip, she peeked at him around a red wave of hair. Maybe after the movie, since the topic had moved on to their parents. ”I think the postcards are the only reason my mother let me attend Hogwarts at all.” She tilted her face skyward with a smile. ”She was used to having me underfoot. I guess she missed me once I wasn’t despite all her complaining.”

She waved shyly at a few people they passed in the street. Exchanged a couple good evenings with regulars or friends of her parents. It wasn’t often she walked out with a gentleman, but no one looked terribly askance at it, and most wished them a good evening. When they were more or less alone again, sidewalk quiet and a fog drifting in from the alleys, Courtney grew tense at her side. Daisy noticed the way his posture changed slightly and tipped her face toward him.

”No. It’s both for me as well. They thought my Hogwarts letter was some sort of prank.” It was odd days for muggleborn. All that upheaval and talk about muggles being chattel. Where did it leave them? ”An aunt suggested they follow the instructions. I’ve still never met her.” Daisy tucked her hands and her newspaper behind her back, shoulders shrugging. ”But I’m fairly certain she’s a witch too.”
Title: Re: Just a cuppa
Post by: Jones on Mar 17 2019, 07:32 PM
”Maybe so.” He echoed, a hollowness in his voice hinting at a black speck of doubt. While his countrymen all predicted a quick and tidy end to the war he knew how long it had been raging below the surface of muggle participation. This might be the last year he and many of his teammates flew. If the season even played out. For a second Courtney’s eyes drifted to the sky overhead. Clouds low, because it was England, but not so dark as to be dreary. Perhaps later on it would rain and they would be trapped in the theater long enough to do more than just talk about the film. He had low expectations from such a nice girl on a first date, but a man could still hope for a few kisses. In fact, this young man in particular had grown rather used to them. Even from nice girls.

Who told cute stories about their mothers. Reminding him of his own, though he was sure that side by side they would prove very different sorts of women. ”Mothers secretly like to have us to fuss at- and over.” Courtney told her with a knowing smirk. Always fussing, but then fussing about how much they were missed when they were gone. He thought it was an important right of passage- boarding away at school.

Mind on his own years away he only nodded politely at passersby. An instinctive sort of reaction to the raising of Daisy’s hand. She looked pleased to be out, and they were not hanging one another or even holding hands so the threat of sullying her good reputation was minimal. He was not a Londoner, so had no name one way or the other for anyone to comment on. They walked towards the more active section of town. Where the pubs and cinemas and nightlife hummed. Talking, in that way of couples getting to know one another. Such tidbits made doubly important by the era itself. At least for the magical community.

”Was that your first clue? The letter?” He had also received an invitation to Hogwarts. That was not his first brush with the wizarding world, however. He told her about it when she’d finished explaining. Shoulders growing lax now that he was sure the date would not be abruptly ending over something as petty as blood status. ”I was… ‘a bit of a fire starter’ as my mother put it. Before I was school age. My mother hired a tutor, and he turned out to be a wizard in the long run. He helped me to keep a lid on things until I was ready for formal education.”

They rounded another corner. Down the lane a way a group of rowdy sorts bantered outside of a pub. He offered Daisy his arm, pocketing its hand into his jacket where his wand was cleverly tucked. Just in case. The English could be very crude. ”My mother was overwhelmed, but also very French. So she insisted on learning as much as she could to make sure she sent me to the right school. In the end she chose Beauxbaton and I cannot fault the decision. Though I hear Hogwarts is a fine place to learn as well.” The boxy-faced brawlers on the curb gave a hoot and cat calls as they passed, earning a brief scowl from Courtney. They didn’t pick a fight, thankfully, and Courtney found no need to stun them. All for the better, he was terrible at oblivation and had no desire to wait around on Ministry officials.

Once they were well away he carried on the conversation. ”How did you like school? They break you up into different little factions at Hogwarts, yes? My teammates talk often about this. It’s strange to me, to come from the same school yet be so competitive.” They had split the doors by gender in Beauxbaton, to keep from too much faire l'amour. It slowed them down at least, but the gardens were expansive. They had a lot of places to hide.
Title: Re: Just a cuppa
Post by: Koi on Mar 23 2019, 08:09 AM
He was right. Daisy did not tell him so, merely smiling and shaking her head in agreement. Mothers! She lived hers dearly but they did like to fuss, and meddle just a little. At least hers did. Her father was more like a bulldog. Staunch and very forward in his intentions and meaning. They made for a good, if somewhat smothering pair. And popular among the neighborhood, which lead to Daisy’s being well known. Though she was liked in her own right.

”The first of any real substance.” He made good company. Friendly to her neighbors without trying to insert himself and thus holding them up. Daisy was afraid he would not understand just how much the old men could get to talking. Worse than old women, who understood a girl wanted to walk out when she was doing so. ”Though afterward my mother blamed me for every flat loaf and fallen soufflé.” Courtney’s sounded much more exciting.

”Your poor mother!” She laughed. ”I hope you did not scorch anything too terribly important. Like a soufflé,” she teased. It made it easier for her to step in close and take the arm he offered her. Noise rising around them from a hush to a dull roar as the street got busier. ”Oh. That is very good, you must have been all prepared for school then.” She turned her face pointedly away from the group of men lounging outside a pub.

Her friendly nature often mislead people. Daisy had learned how to turn away from a crowd. It was much harder to do in person one on one, but she had grown adept at snubbing those with what she felt were ill intentions. It had worked wonders on the bullies at school too. And so they passed unmolested -mostly, the tension leaving Courtney’s shoulders past Daisy’s fingertips. ”Beauxbaton!” She exclaimed, careful not to let her voice carry past the two of them. ”How exciting!

“Hogwarts is the superior school, of course, but I hear its very nice there.”
And very French! But then, so was Courtney, and his mother. And Daisy was honest enough to admit his accent was very much a part of the attraction. And his surprisingly dazzling smile. Even with the men and their vulgarity behind them, Daisy did not release his arm. ”Oh yes! The Sorting Hat always knows where you will fit in best. I would think you would like competition, being a quidditch player?” Daisy had never been particularly competitive, but she was dogged. A true Hufflepuff right through.

”I was in Hufflepuff. It was all very exciting the first year. And after, but that first year!” Daisy turned her smiling face to him. All the wonder of that first magical awakening in her face. She blushed, and tipped her head knowingly at his shoulder without actually resting on it. ”Oh you know what I mean!” Sure that he did because they had both come from a world far removed from the wizarding one.

The marquee shown brightly ahead, Hitchcock’s name catching Daisy’s eye. ”Is that the one? I hope it isn’t too frightening. I hear he is a very strange man.” Her father had called him a demented penguin once when her mother had brought him up.
Title: Re: Just a cuppa
Post by: Jones on Mar 25 2019, 09:28 PM
Courtney was not at all surprised by her answer. Most young muggleborns were caught completely unawares. Even with a wizened wizard tutor he had not had a name for the spontaneous happenstances that lurked around the edges of his childhood tantrums. Only the reassurance that he was not, as the nanny insisted, a demon. It was more than simply not knowing for Daisy, though, he suspected. Such a  pure sort of modest. Not the type to think herself spectacular or extra-ordinary. Good, steady muggle parents would, naturally, think the letter a prank until given a helpful push by a mysterious aunt. Meanwhile his own mother had embraced the knowledge with a victorious hoot. Hadn’t she always said he was destined to be great?

Mouth twisting up at the memories he gave a small chuckle at her talk of souffles. ”No, it seems handbags and shoes were my preference for fodder.” Eyes crinkling cheerfully around their edges as she came in close enough to take shelter against his shoulder. The bruisers let them pass on unassailed, thankfully. The couple’s conversation slowing but never quiet faltering in the process. She looked up at him steadily and Courtney did his best to do the same without leaving them completely ignoring their surroundings. Talk of school simple enough to carry them happily forward.

”No he taught me very standard muggle primary school things. I was mostly oblivious until my mother insisted touring schools before choosing one.” He laughed. Dark lashes sweeping towards his cheeks as he breathed a sigh of relief. Then laughed some more. ”Yes, quite. It’s a far cry from the glory of a castle-” Courtney mused with a grin, ”though I dare say the chateau has its own brand of majesty.” He liked the way her accent gave the French school’s name a boxy sort of edge. Growing up he had heard his mother describe several of her clients as ‘adorably British’. Now he understood the sentiment she had been trying to convey.

Popping up on his toes and falling back with a jaunty bounce Courtney crowed at her declaration. ”I have heard Hogwarts assumes as much, but Beauxbaton needs not boast of its superiority. We are quite confident.” When she stayed close rather than pull away he leaned in a hair’s breadth. Listening to her chat on about a hat that sorted people and how she would have assumed his career made him competitive. ”One might naturally.” He told her with another flashed smile before revealing his truest colors, ”Honestly I just love flying. And the sport gives me plenty of time and reason to be in the sky showing my skill. I don’t mind competition, I enjoy the camaraderie of being on a team more, though.”

Anytime Courtney spoke of flying his eyes went skyward, widening in that far away look of someone in deep thought. He couldn’t think about the sensation without imagining it too. And there was not even a drop of falcity in his words. He didn’t mind the competitive nature of quidditch. It was of no consequence though, if he could have made a fortune on a broomstick any other way he would have considered it just as carefully as he had chosen which team to sign with. Thoughts of one pleasure were tucked away to enjoy present company, however. Lips turning up again as he tried not to seem too oblivious to what a Hufflepuff was, or how one got into it. At least they were back on common ground when it came to that first year of learning. Stepping fully out of the muggle world and into the wizarding community. ”Yes. I do.” He agreed heartily.

”Have you ever been to Paris?” He asked, elbow tucking back a bit so that she was a little closer to his side. ”Place Cachée would take your breath away.” Diagon Alley was nice in its own way, and Hogsmeade had a certain charm. There was nothing like the street performances during Christmas celebrations or the spring parades. Courtney often wanted to take his mother to see. Her personality, however, would have made it impossible not to speak of it to others. And he worried very much that she would get them both into trouble breaching the statute. So he refrained.

Following her gaze to the theater sign Courtney nodded. ”Indeed, Mademoiselle Daisy. That is the one.” When it grew dark they would shut out all the lights in the city. Right now the sign was lit like a beacon in the hazy London weather. The director’s name spelled out in big black letters to tempt the curious and brave inside. It seemed that Daisy had more knowledge of the muggle film maker than Courtney. Who rolled a shoulder and gave her hand a squeeze. ”I am told it is quite thrilling without being inappropriate for young ladies. If Monsieur Hitchcock is a strange man, it will only make his films all the more interesting I suppose. You’ll have me here, if you get to afraid.” For hand holding, the warm look in his eyes promised.

At the ticketbooth he paid from his muggle pocketbook. Glad to have been raised in a way that lent itself to adjusting to different monies and languages. It had made adjusting to magical society easy too. He suspected, though, after watching his wizarding teammates and friends struggle with pounds and francs, that learning knuts first made the rest harder to figure out. After buying a fat bag of salt drenched popped corn Courtney chose a set of seats near the door. All his training made him mindful of the risk of air raids. If they were close to the door they could get out quickly should the sirens sound. Out and to a safe spot for apparating.

The big screen was already crackling with the newsreel. Courtney had not yet seen the wartime household tips featurette. Amused by their suggestions for storing old jars and using shoe polish instead of hair wax he settled into his seat, one arm thrown across the back of Daisy’s seat. Cheerful until the clip ended and the telling scream of mechanical engines took over the screen. Tensing at the now familiar sound he eyed the story of an American aeroplane prototype crashing along the coast of New York. It was a funny looking thing with a tailfin unlike he had seen before. Apparently the Americans thought it was the fastest plane yet made. ”Three-hundred and ninety miles an hour!” He repeated in shock, wishing (not for the first time) he could time himself on his broom for the sake of curiosity. ”They throw us a few of those and a steady gunner the war will be over before Christmas.”

A few men in the audience turned around in their seats to agree. Prompting him to sit just a little closer to Daisy. Just to make sure they knew it. But no one asked, of course, nor did they have much time too. With a small surge of latecomers taking their seats the programme started in earnest. The director’s name flashing across the picture just before the name of the film itself. ‘Rebecca’ written in blocky letters. As promised it was very intense. Every cliffhanger and plot twist making his palm flinch open in case the young lady wanted to dip her fingers between his own.
Title: Re: Just a cuppa
Post by: Koi on Mar 30 2019, 11:18 AM
”That must have been a lark!” Imagine, touring schools. Daisy had never seen another herself, just Hogwarts. ”It also must have been a relief for her shoe budget.” Daisy was dearly fond of her shoe collection. She couldn’t imagine having it picked off by magical explosions. Her cheeks warmed beneath his smile. He had the longest lashes! Daisy found it horribly unfair. And distracting.

The evening was going well, however. His arm was politely comfortable, and he had made no wayward advances. Daisy appreciated his good manners and pleasant nature. And his eyelashes.

”Oh I bet it does.” Daisy had seen a watery picture in the back of a scandal magazine once at Hogwarts. Like most wizarding schools, Beauxbaton’s was secretive despite their prestige. Daisy never had understood the need within the magical community. She’d heard there was another school wandering Europe with no set destination at all. Beside her, Courtney gave a little bounce at her declaration. And Daisy laughed at his.

”Assumes! I think you are mistaken, whatever your confidence.” Her nose was playfully turned up at him. Confidence was so very French! ”Everyone knows Hogwarts is The School.” Daisy corrected with enunciation and a grin. And a blush as he leaned in a little closer. Daisy couldn’t meet his eye but for a minute before she had to look away with a shy laugh.

She watched him through her curl, which had slipped free of her ear. She really ought to have pinned it, Daisy thought. But it made the looking easier and less direct. He all but glowed, almost consumed by his thoughts of flying. Face to the clouds as if they would part and draw him up into the sky. It made Daisy smile, fingers settling in the crook of his elbow. ”Friends and flying.” And a little showing off. Her eyes crinkled happily. ”It sounds nice when you put it that way. You could almost forget about the beaters and bludgers whizzing all over.”

She had been a very staunch supporter of her house team, but beyond that Daisy had not developed an interest in the sport. She was too grounded, she supposed, for flying about on broomsticks. Being a Hufflepuff had been steadying as she discovered a new world that was sometimes frightening. Big and wild. Courtney understood that. The wonder of it. Daisy doubted he’d ever experienced the fear. He was too bold for that, she thought.

”I haven’t.” Hogwarts was the furthest she’d been from home. Paris was a dream for other days. ”Maybe after the war,” she said wistfully, feeling their bodies meet. Hips and thighs brushing before she leaned away a little, fingers sliding in the crease of his arm. She was sure it would take her breath away, and a part of Daisy very much wanted it to be stollen from her body by the wonders of the world. ”I would like to see it though.” It sounded amazing, what little she had heard.

Later days. Tonight was for a movie, the theatre rising up in front of them. She blushed at the title, it sounded rich from his tongue instead of trite. Probably because of the accent. And the soothing way he talk to her, squeezing her gently as he did. ”So I will,” she whispered, throat suddenly tight. Blushing, she ducked her face into the shadow between their bodies and gave herself time to settle while he ordered tickets and popcorn.

The darkness of the theatre was a respite. Daisy felt less on display nestled into a seat at Courtney’s side because of it. Even if they were still on display, side by side in the dark while the film light flickered on over their heads. Daisy watched the advertisements and tips with a smile, but the newsreel ran a shiver down her spine and twisted her stomach. Too loud. Too real. Worse with a soldier sitting next to her. Courtney seemed excited more than anything, which made Daisy worry more.

”That would be a blessing.” And a Christmas Miracle. A few other gentlemen turning agree, their companions casting shy, understanding smiles at Daisy that made her feel worse. Glad when the movie started. Though her gladness waned, leaving Daisy to lean in and squeeze tight to the hand offered her. Confused and terrified in turn, she couldn’t help but pity all the players by the end, face buried against Courtney’s shoulder with a gasp just before the lights rose.

”That poor woman!” She whispered, using the popcorn bag as an excuse to disengage her hand from his now that the darkness had retreated. She brushed a piece of popcorn from his lapel and shook the bag to see how much was left. ”Some for the walk home.” She told him with a smile, cheeks rosy. More comfortable with linking her arm through his now that she knew the feel of his fingers through his. This was easier, with fabric to separate them.
Title: Re: Just a cuppa
Post by: Jones on Apr 09 2019, 09:44 AM
Over the curve of his cheek Courtney chuckled at Daisy. Fingers itching to sweep the loose hair from her face. Knowing it would be too forward at such an early stage in their acquaintanceship. The very corners of her eyes folded cheerfully when she smiled. It was vain, he knew, but they must have made a very pretty couple. Even if he had been an ugly mug. The thought was fleeting while the  conversation was on quidditch, though, as he couldn’t be persuaded to think of much else until it shifted. ”I forget them all the time. That’s what the flying and friends are for.”

Courtney was starting to think they would have just as agreeable a time walking the evening away in chatter as they would at the cinema. He was determined to treat her, however, since she did him the honor of stepping out with him in the first place. Their discussion had turned to the wider wizarding world. Daisy admitted she had not seen Paris, reminding him that not everyone had been afforded the benefit of travel growing up. ”Ah well, more to look forward to once all this mess is put to bed, yes?” His smile was cheerful enough to hide the wariness behind his eyes. Now that the muggles were at war too… well he worried. Not much, but enough.

Perhaps they would even go together.

Arm in arm, much the same way they entered the theater. It’s welcoming lobby giving way to the quiet excitement of the dark viewing room. As the evening passed Daisy endeared herself to him more and more. Every flutter of her lashes making his smile widen. His cheeks ached but he couldn’t stop. From grin to smirk, it held at every shy dip of her body against his. Especially once the newsreel ended. In the dark they held hands while she flinched and came close. Courtney pet her knuckles when they held tight and tried not to laugh. It was a good film. A bit more frightening than the talk had let on. He had no regrets, however. Except perhaps that it was over too soon.

Shoulder warm where her mouth lingered he shifted in his seat. Body leaning towards Daisy and legs away. Knees closed so the slack in his trouser fronts could serve its purpose. Despite her quickness to free their joined hands Courtney suspected she enjoyed the cozy moment. It gave him the needed courage to fix the stray curl over her eye. One hand stealing into his coat pocket to brush over the tip of his want. The other sweeping her hair into place. Unspoken magic dabbing the tip so that it would hold. Now she could think of him, when she was home. Standing in front of her bathroom mirror in her nightshift to let down her hair. Right before she crawled into bed, he thought privately. Mind warm at the idea.

He would certainly be thinking of her before laying in his bunk. And likely the whole night through. ”Oh good. We’ll have to take our time then.” He told her cheerfully, pinching a kernel from the bag and popping it onto his tongue with a chuckle. She was old enough to stay out as long as she liked, but her father seemed the sort to come looking if she were a minute later than ten o’clock. ”Are you in a hurry to get back?” He tempted as they stood to leave the theater. Arms linked again and hands brushing with the silent hope that they might hold them again.

Courtney risked her opinion of his manners, lacing their fingers again once they were on the street. There was a little mist in the air. As if the sky had considered raining but decided it wasn’t worth the trouble. ”I could show you where I really work.” He offered with eyes twinkling. The practice field was nothing fancy. Not the sort of place he would normally take a woman that was not already a fan. But Courtney had an idea on how to nicely wrap their evening. They just had to get there before the sun went down.
Title: Re: Just a cuppa
Post by: Koi on Apr 20 2019, 07:35 AM
Heart beating too hard, Daisy was almost sure he’d kiss her as he leaned. It happened plenty in dark places. The cinema a choice place for many couples to snuggle up close and sneak a few kisses in. But the lights were coming up and everyone would see. Her face hot enough for Daisy to feel embarrassed by it, which only made the blushing worse. She looked anywhere but at his face. Eyes lingering on his lips before sliding away toward the floor.

He didn’t kiss her however, just tucked her hair back for. ”Thank you.” Daisy crinkled the popcorn and dared to look back at him. Close enough that she could pick out the variations of color in his eyes. Elbows tucking tight, Daisy slid out of her seat to escape the proximity, her stomach fluttering like it was full of pixies. Courtney stole a piece from the popcorn box before joining her, their arms looping together casually. ”I’m not. Shifts over, remembering?” With no curl to hide behind, Daisy was forced to be cheeky head on.

Somewhere between the theatre doors and the sidewalk outside their hands ended up linked together again. Daisy’s fingers fitting between his, her thumb tucked between their palms. Looking up at the threatening sky, Daisy breathed in the moist air. Fog was good. Cloud cover questionable, being a double edged sword. ”That would be something.” Daisy smiled at him, popcorn rattling at her side. He was so devilishly handsome, she didn’t care which workplace he meant.

Both would be fascinating. Certainly she’d seen a quidditch pitch before, but never in such company. And she’d never been within yards of a muggle plane. Comfortable against his arm, Daisy let Courtney lead the way, mind drifting toward the movie. ”You know, that house could have easily been an old pureblood mansion.” She mused, thinking of all the whispers and rumors she’d heard in school.

”They all seemed to have some sort of story in their family. Is it the same in France?” She asked, holding the popcorn out to him.