(1937-12-27) An Elephant and Penguins
Details for An Elephant And Penguins
Summary: Annie and Jack exchange Christmas gifts.
Date: 27 December 1937
Location: Leaky Cauldron

It's half past one on December 27, and the day is cold and gloomy in London. With one gift left to give, Annie sent a friend into the Leaky Cauldron to pass a note on to Jack. A request for him to meet her, if he can, at the little coffee and pastry shop just outside the gates of the London Zoo. She's been here for some minutes, with a pot of tea already on the table, two cups, and some little tea treats to share, should he be able to come. She's not sure, even now, that he'll show up, but she'll wait, just in case, as long as she's able. Her coat is draped across the back of her chair, and she wears a simple knit jumper and skirt.

The door opens and closes a few time before the form and figure of a young man enters, a box tucked under his arm. His coat covers a good portion of him, a hat and scarf wrapped about his neck in the attempt to keep the cold at bay. Stomping his feet at the threshold, Jack looks about before a lopsided, cheeky grin appears on his face. He heads towards Annie, offering the greeting, "Oi. S'aight?"

Annie glances over at each new chill breeze signaling the door has swung once more. Finally, her waiting is rewarded and the slightly pensive cast to her features evens into a smile. She stands as he approaches, nodding, and returning, "Alright." There's a hesitation before she steps forward in something of an awkward attempt to offer a hug in greeting.

Setting his package down in the table, shifting the tea a bit, Jack turns about and straightens before he gives Annie a quick hug and a brief kiss.. which brings that smile back around. "'Appy Chris'mus. 'Ope it was good. Sain' Nick give y'coal?"

The kiss is returned, as each one he's given has been. Annie steps back, then sits again, looking up at him. "Happy Christmas, Jack. It was good." She leaves it simply at that, returning the question. "And yours?"

Dark eyes gleam with that Jack-humour, and he shrugs, watching Annie take her seat. Unbuttoning his heavy coat, he just pushes it open before sitting down. He's clean shaven now, but for the single days growth. He entwined his fingers before him as he keeps that lopsided smile for his companion. "S'sight. 'Ad a hot meal, so tha's a change for the 'oliday. An' a pair o'wool socks." Gesturing towards his box for Annie, and his tones turn playful. "Spare socks I didn't need. 'Appy Christmas."

Annie's noticed the lesser scruff on the young man's face, although she won't comment on it. It seems things are better for him, though, and that brings a thoughtful cast to her eyes as she watches him sit. But when he looks to her, she looks away, busying herself pouring them each a cuppa from the little pot on the table. "It sounds lovely," she says quietly. Her eyes go to the box as he gestures, and she looks to him, then away quickly as she turns to rummage in her coat pocket. He'd recognize that she's charmed it to hold more than normal from the moment it takes her to produce what she seeks. A smallish box, a little bigger than would fit comfortably in the palm of his hand, wrapped in green paper with a red ribbon and bow. She offers it out to him, eyes again drifting to his face. "Happy Christmas, Jack."

Jack's not lucky enough to have pockets that seem to hold everything plus, thus the carrying of the box under the arm. "Diff'ent, anyways," he agrees. "T'ings lookin' up f' me," though he says that quietly, lest he jinx it. "Roof an' fair work wif 'Is Majesty still. Startin' t' fly." As she takes the box from her pocket, all wrapped and such, his brows rise in question. "Y'didn' need t' bother.." Jack sounds honestly touched, however. "Came into a lil' bit an' got you som'fin nice tha' ain' socks, I swears it." Reaching forward, he takes hold, ready to shake it like a little kid.

Annie lets Jack have at the box, watching with amusement growing in her eyes. She doesn't ask more about his Christmas, but reaches for the box he set on the table to open it at the same time. Taking the lid off the box she stops, her eyes widening in surprise. "Jack." It's little more than a whisper as she takes the figurine of the elephant from it's little cotton nest. It's trunk is up, which is good luck, and the eyes are little glittering rubies. She takes a minute to look at it from every angle, then lets her eyes slip over to watch him open his gift.

One he gets the ribbon untied, the paper will flap open to reveal a small brown box. Inside the box is a snow globe, about the size of a ball that will fit in the palm of his hand. A touch sets the charm working, the snow inside fluttering without being shaken. Also inside, is a little tableau. A group of penguins are charmed as well, and they waddle around comically on a patch of ice. They'll move around as long as the globe is held, sometimes slipping and falling, sometimes pushing themselves along on their stomachs… all in all, acting like the penguins they watched together the last time they were at the zoo.

It is almost physically impossible for Jack to sit still long enough for Annie to open her present. He keeps wanting to help tear his handiwork of wrapping apart just to see her face. He's not disappointed, and he offers a genuine smile at the reaction. As much as he's not had, he's happy to give if he's got it. For his own present, he opens it, slowing as he sees the glass orb. He's.. transfixed, staring at the small tableau, with the flipping and playing of the penguins. It's another real effort, then, to tear his attention away. "Fanks.. it's .. amazin'…" Speechless.

Annie gives Jack a small smile, holding the elephant up near his snow globe. "Looks like we were both thinkin' kinda alike." Her eyes settle again on the elephant from him, and she strokes one finger along it's trunk, tracing the graceful loop. After a moment her eyes flit back to him, and she says softly, "Thank yeh, Jack."

"I'm 'fraid o' carryin' it, but it's som'fin I wanna keep wif me.." Jack sounds almost wistful. "Can y'make it break-proof? Please?" The moment of that 'true, real Jack' passes, and he finds that 'place' once again. He'd noticed there was the definite theme too.. and chuffs a soft laugh while reaching for a cup for the tea. "It's a good time fer us, dat zoo. Wifout th'monkeys." Notice neither gave a monkey! "It ain' as nice as your pres.."

Annie glances around then leans closer to Jack for a moment, "I know a charm that'll work a treat. Before we go, we'll need to duck away an' I'll take care of it for yeh." Her voice was lower, just in case, because the shop isn't empty and it's a muggle establishment. She's drifted back to admiring his gift when he compares the two, and her eyes snap up to him with a light shake of her head. "Nonsense." The elephant is pulled in, held against her heart. "It's wonderful, and thoughtful, and I love it." Now her face darkens with mock anger, "And if yeh say anything like that again, I'll box yer ears."

Jack listens to Annie's words; pretty sure there was something she could do. He, obviously, can't.. and nods, looking pleased. Relieved. It'll be with him, in his pocket now, when he's away, like to flight school, gunnery school. When things get serious, there'll be fewer days during the week that he can return to the Alley. "Ta," and he pushes it over gently, ready for whenever she's good to give it a shot. "When's your birfday, by the by?" Pouring a cup of tea now, he makes the attempt to look.. innocent, though he's undoubtedly failing, miserably. It's the gleam in his eye, the impish, cheeky smile that is on his face. Narrowing those dark brown eyes, he leans forward, "I'd li' t'see y'try it.."

Annie is reaching for a little tea cake when the question comes, and she looks up to him with surprise. The drift of her attention results in her thumb planted in the cake quite unexpectedly. "Bother," she murmurs, pulling her thumb back out, not thinking as she quickly sucks the bit of white frosting off and then reaches again. "It's in February," she manages to answer, this time without putting her fingers in the little treat. "When's yers?" The cake is summarily brought up for a bite, frosting licked from her lips. Her eyes dance with mirth at his challenge and she chews and swallows quickly to sniff at him lightly. "No yeh wouldn't."

Jack laughs at the finger-fumble, and when she pulls her thumb up, the mirth is evident on his face, "'Oh wha' a good girl y'are.' Where's the plum?" He simply can't resist! "February, is't?" He keeps with his lean, and his voice lowers a little more, "'Round 'bout St. Valentine's, eh? Bit of a gif'?" Actually, he's got an idea for a birthday present; he just didn't think of it in time for Christmas! He looks all the world as if he's not about to answer, and presses his lips together in a smirk and shakes his head, his gaze watching her eat that cake.. intently. Old habits.. "Dat good?"

Annie wrinkles her nose at his joke, trying not to look amused without much success. "Round about then, aye," she says easily, no intent to give a day without information returned. Her brows lift, in more of a tease than anything else, and she nods, making a show of taking another bite of the cake. "Mmmmm… sooooo good." There's a gleam in her eyes as she offers the other half she's not eaten yet out toward him. "Try it."

"'Round 'bout den.." Jack grins at the failed attempt not to look amused by his words. "Y'can't 'elp yerself, I know.." He does watch the cake, and there's that moment of real.. temptation. He's trying, he really, really is! Reaching out, he makes to pluck the cake from her fingers in order to pop it into his mouth. "You are a bad influence," and it's in no way an accusation. He's.. teasing. And there's many a truth spoken in jest! Leaning back again, he takes a swallow of his now cooler tea.

Annie lets him take the cake from her readily enough, not offering protest but there is something of a smugness about her smile for the next few moments. The accusation isn't denied. "Maybe so. Now, yeh tell me when yer birthday is." He brought it up, he should at least give the information. She watches him hawkishly, more closely than she's done before. Obviously, anyway.

Jack pops the cake into his mouth and chews thoughtfully, licking his fingers one by one with a smacking of his lips. "Comin' up.. actually." And the word is enunciated. "Might no' be 'round f'it, though. Might be off an' flyin'.. outta preference fer the day." So he'll be absenting himself? "Now, what's th'day for you?" Leaning on his arms on the table now, his brows rise in the question. "If y'don't tell me, that's fine. I'll fin' out anovver way."

A stubborn set comes to Annie's face, but there's still a gleam of humor in her eyes. "Not until yeh tell me, Jack Dodderidge." Her brows go up dramatically at his cheek. "Yeh think, do yeh? How would yeh find out? Not many even knows." She crosses her arms across her chest, waiting for an answer.

Jack looks around the place theatrically before ducking his head, and he shows his own stubborn streak as he makes sure each word is understood, though his words are accented with an evil, challenging smile. He's definitely having fun. "I'll sen' y'som'fin every bleedin' day o'the month until I gets th'one day that's the real one.. an' y'might no'like some of 'em.." Leaning back, he continues a little loftily, "I found an int'resin' piss boy statue on one 'ouse clean out."

If they weren't in polite company, Jack would find himself with a snoot full of cake, honestly. Annie doesn't look scared by his words, but as he straightens and gives an example, her brows go up and her mouth opens in a O of surprise, before she dissolves into laughter. "Yeh wouldn't dare, either," she asserts, " because then I'd have t' start now with yer presents, since yeh didn't even give me a month."

That grin is plastered on his face, Jack enunciates the words, "I would.." before he, too, begins to laugh. "Or, could be a pathetic attempt t'get prezzes all for the comin' weeks 'cause Christmas weren't 'nuf." He leans back and begins to whistle softly, his brows rising in that 'try me' expression. "Ne'er said I was fair."

"Well, maybe I'll send yeh little gifties every day then, just t' show yeh." She'd do it, and it wouldn't be any 'piss boy statue' either! Annie sits back, setting down her emptied tea cup. "Yeh never did, an' I wouldn't have believed yeh anyway. Fair. Not our Jack." The last three words are emphasized, and then she laughs again. "Finish up yer tea, yeh wee beastie, an' let's take care of the last bit of yer gift. We'll go out an' I'll charm it," she adds, with a nod to his snow globe.

Oh, Jack's got more fun things than just the 'piss-boy statue'! That's just the beginning. The grin doesn't fade, though he does lift his mug in a little toast before going to empty the contents. She almost wears the liquid when he's called a 'wee beastie', and he barks a laugh.. after he's done coughing and trying to draw a proper breath. "S'first time I'd been called a 'beastie'.. 'Bastard', aye.. 'sod', 'piker'.. 'wanker', e'en.." Rising to his feet, he's got to pull his coat closed again; it's cold outside! Picking up his present, he puts it gently into his pocket.

Annie reaches over to helpfully pat Jack on the back after nearly drowning him in tea, and she laughs again at the words he spews forth. "Cor, Jack, is that all yeh can remember?" She pops up to her feet as well, turning to get her coat and shrug into it, then taking up the elephant and putting it carefully back into it's box. It would be rather obvious if she shoved that into her pocket in front of muggles, so she tucks it up against herself as she pulls her coat closed and deftly fastens the center button. "C'mon, beastie," she says with a grin, leaving coins on the table, and moves to head out into the cold.

Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License