(1937-12-31) And So it Goes
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Summary: Julian and Eibhlin struggle on the dawning of a new year to reconcile what is going on in their lives; on top of that, bringing in the New Year. A conclusion to Heartache, Hubris, and Hormones.
Date: 31 December, 1937
Related: Heartache, Hubris, and Hormones

11:45 had rocked around on New Years Eve in the area of Scotland that Hogwarts was located in. The weather looks as if it's going to prove to be heavily snowy. Sitting inside the tower for now, and quietly looking upon his pocket watch in the soft, ambient light available, Julian was quietly counting down the time until he could greet 1938 with a blast. Sitting on top of one of the desks, he waits, hands clasped in his lap, his head turned toward the north… looking out the window facing that cardinal direction.

In the last several days, things had gotten a little too complicated. It was a long, quiet wait. He had come up at eleven. A small burlap bag sits nearby on another desk. He's dressed in a relaxed manner… but since he is on a high part of the tower where heat is sparse, he had decided to wear his robe and cloak, for good measure. The snow falling reflects the moonlight outside… making it quite an interesting, breathtaking sight outside.

"Why am I here?" He asks himself quietly. "You know she's not coming." He snickers a little, shaking his head…

The last two days were rather full of introspection. Introspection and tears. Eibhlin often wishing herself to be in some other place or time. Handling the Gryffindor was simple- she explained things as best she could and he was gone until after the holidays anyway. She would just lay it out that she was confused, befuddled, and he had flattered her quite a bit.

Unfortunately, Julian was a whole other matter. They had been friends for so many years now and the shifting dynamic made her ill to think on. Perhaps if it had come earlier. Or not at all. Being friends was easy. She knew how to do that. If it weren't for Dale, giving him the chance would be easy. Instead it is the most confounding, difficult thing to deal with. Perhaps she should have gone with her mother to visit extended family. Surely the discomfort of prying questions and deflecting them to keep the Statute would be easier than all of this.

When the door opens to admit Eibhlin into the classroom portion of the tower, she's attired in heavy winter gear… but at least one wrist is visible and she is not wearing the bracelet on it. The redhead steps in, letting the door fall closed. She's still in non-school uniform, save for the Ravenclaw colored hat, mittens, and scarf she wears. She stands there, letting snow fall away from her. Nothing said as of yet, she just clasps her hands before her.

By the time she had gotten there, it was close to time. By his watch, it was 11:55. Hearing a door opening, Julian is roused from his reverie of staring out the window. He doesn't immediately turn his head… Making sure his face is set. The resulting look on Julian's face is, decidedly, a bad Poker Face. Especially when his eyes skim over her, and he notices the distinct lack of a particular trinket. Crestfallen, it shows on his face… without the shadow of a doubt. Even if it's only for a split second.

"… Hi, Evie."

Taking a deep breath to try and steady himself for what is likely to come, he slides off of the desk he was sitting on, and he begins to move toward her carefully. Time was still marching on steadily. 1938's first memory, in Julian's mind, had already been decided for him, as well.

Her other wrist was not revealed, but there's still no sign of the bracelet as she steps further into the room. Clasping your hands in mittens is difficult, but Eibhlin manages. She just can't wring them too much.


The redhead looks to her feet, then up to her fellow Ravenclaw. "I… didn't want you to spend New Years Eve alone." Though he had implied others would be present, she had suspicions on that. Ones that turned out to be true, it would seem. "And… as selfish as it may be, I did not want to be alone either, so…" Another few steps, silence reigning for a moment. When she does speak again, it tumbles out in a rush:

"I thought the least I could do is give you that kiss."

"I had thought about inviting other people." At the point she had gotten to where hands could be held, Julian was looking down. When he sees mitten hands coming forward, though, to take his own… he blinks. And looking up, he tilts his head. "But… I wanted to give you the chance." Truth be told, he had resigned to the fact he would likely be spending the night alone. Perhaps this would, ultimately, make things harder for him.

Perhaps as part of an impulse, he lets her hands go… but only so that he can use his own to lightly pull her mittens off. He puts them into one of his pockets, and then, goes back to her hands, looking at her carefully and considering her words, squinting slightly. Those last, rushed words catch his attention the most, and he gulps slightly…

"You don't have to. And I don't want you to. Not unless you mean it." Another gulp. He's not choking up. No… he got all of his own emotions out after leaving her the other day in the library.

It's with distant eyes that Eibhlin watches while he pulls off her mittens. Even so covered, her hands are cool to the touch. She drops her gaze to the floor as he speaks, exhaling in a small sigh.

"I told you I would."

"I… I opened the gift. And read your letter. I'm… I'm sorry I never noticed, Jul." Eibhlin draws a deep breath and lifts her chin to regard the other Ravenclaw. "I… I thought Dale's behavior around me was just making fun of me until he explained otherwise when he gave me those chocolates for my birthday. I'm just… not good with these sorts of things." She swallows, hands becoming somewhat clammy. "And… though I can't promise anything, I do want you to know I'll keep you in mind. I won't… write you off or forget any of this."

The silence that had surrounded them was thick after Evie's last words, and Julian was struggling against it. Feeling the change in how her hands feel, he keeps his own around hers, not letting them go unless she tries to withdraw. Gently, he begins to pull her a little closer by the hands, breathing in deeply and quietly closing his eyes. He formulates his response… and when he does, it comes out with that horrible quiet that is unlike him.

"I want you to do what makes you happy." Thumbs run over the backside of Eibhlin's hands at that point, and he just watches her, shaking his head. "I'll be there… I told you I would… and I'm a man of my word." He lifts her hands, then, with his own… a finger coming up to quietly touch at her chin with a small finger as she keeps her chin tilted up toward him. "I made my promise already. I'll be here. I'm not going anywhere."

The silence is then punctured harshly. There's a bright, colorful set of lights illuminating the southeastern sky… Obviously, fireworks going off in the village of Hogsmeade. Steadily, more and more color begins to join the initial splashes… and as it continues on, more pinpricks of light begin to join.

"… Well." His eyes turn to the display for a moment… the light reflecting off the snow… and the brightness enough to illuminate through the classroom. He breathes in, deeply… still holding his fingers toward her chin. The hand that doesn't have the bracelet on it is released… The one that's been ambiguous has been led to his shoulder. His arm goes around her waist, with little warning. Unless she shies away…

"Happy New Year, Eibhlin."

Thus far, Eibhlin does not try to withdraw. Really, all in all, the redhead is fairly pliant this evening. Perhaps moreso her usual self than she has been since her birthday. Quiet, restrained, and thoughtful. She listens to Julian, taking in what he says. No attempts to interrupt or speak over him, no.


The fireworks do come as a bit of a surprise. Not that she was not expecting them, but that she'd forgotten how close to the midnight hour it was. She looks towards those sparks of color, hand moved to his shoulder. Once there, he's likely aware the bracelet is not worn there either. So she is, at the least, not leading him along by wearing it in the fashion indicated. Her eyes reflect some of the flashes of light from the display as he puts his arm about her waist and she steps in a bit, caught between watching the fireworks and regarding the teen with her in the tower.

"Bliain nua fe mhaise dhuit." A similar sentiment, by the way it's spoken, but Irish nonetheless.

Perhaps the fact she hadn't worn it… or even considered wearing it… was for the better. Julian was, as painfully as it may be for him… a man of his word. Curling his arm tighter as she speaks in her native Irish, he closes his eyes, and rests his head on top of her's. He lets her watch the fireworks, the sounds and everything else from the display colorful… bright. His own noisemakers were forgotten. At some point, both arms go around her middle, and he just holds onto her, closely. The wind blows… and as a result, some of that heavy snow from outside blows through the large windows. Could it be a snowflake or two melting, rather than tears that hit her?

If it is tears… he -never- makes a noise. As the display continues on, though, he eventually moves a hand up toward her chin again. Taking it in his hand lightly, he lightly turns her head toward his, and he brings himself close… forehead to forehead. Nose to nose. It's so close. He made the initial step yesterday, though. If she wants it, it's her turn.

"I wouldn't want to bring in a new year and a new chapter in my life with anyone else."

The bracelet is still tucked away within Eibhlin's trunk, back in Ravenclaw tower. She wanted to make it up to the Astronomy classroom, but not to lead the poor boy along. Though perhaps it may have been better for all involved if she had left him be. There's a brief shiver when the snow blows in from outside, but it passes soon enough as she adjusts to the cooler air.

Her breath catches as he turns her towards him, hands shifting to rest on his arms lightly. Perhaps to brace herself, or it just so happens that's where they lay. She does not grab at him or make much more of a move. Instead, she blinks slowly. He speaks and there is silence in return for a few beats.

Finally, she does close that distance to offer a small kiss. It's light and gentle. No forcefulness or overtly stated motions. She's not sloppy about it, nor too detached.

Having felt the shiver was enough of a cause for Julian to keep his arms tight. An attempt at a subtle protective measure. A small token, if anything, as to how he feels. As they stand there so closely, and Eibhlin finally decides to move… he brings his lips against hers, just as she brings her own to his, and he presses lightly against the kiss. He holds it for as long as she wants to… not flinching, or moving away. A hand moves to carefully hold her head, as he had done yesterday… His mind steadily racing with more and more thoughts on what is happening at this moment.

His warmth is able to be felt in the kiss, as well. Not just the kiss… but as close as they are, it's obvious he's warm. Otherwise, there would've been no point in him pulling her so close. Should the kiss continue for long enough, his lips would part just slightly, and he would follow in on it, letting it deepen.

It's the curse of a girl slim, but not athletic. To struggle with always being a bit chilled. It's why Eibhlin bundles up so well against the cold- grandmothers everywhere are pleased with her actions. The redhead does hold the kiss for a short time, even long enough for it to deepen somewhat. It does not last long past that though before she breaks away and pulls back somewhat. She looks away, towards the dark corners of the room for a moment before her gaze comes back to Julian.

"I… know maybe I should not have come, but I wanted you to know that I do care for you, just… not quite in the same way. Not right now, at least. Maybe… I… I don't know."

"The fact you came means a lot to me." Julian doesn't fight or struggle to keep her close. Instead, he lets her slip away. The one thing he does not do, though, is let her hands go. They come up, just lightly, to grasp a hold of her again. "You came… and you spent the New Year with me." He pauses. "I… wouldn't have blamed you if you had went down to Hogsmeade and spent it with him. He's the one you probably -should- have gone to." He pauses, shaking his head.

"I won't forget tonight. And I won't forget what I feel for you. I'll be there… as long as you ever want me to be." He lets his thumbs run over her fingers lightly… holding onto her hands until she pulls them away. His eyes look toward her. Clouded to some extent… but the emotion is there. It's strong. And oh, how on fire it is. The restraint Julian is showing has to be bordering on the surreal. He dare not say what that emotion is. It would only hurt her. It would hurt him -worse.-

"He's not in Hogsmeade," Eibhlin says softly, glancing towards the fireworks display that still goes on. Bright flashes of color in the winter sky. The teen swallows, finally pulling her hands back. She scrubs at her eyes a bit with her cloak's sleeve.

"I… I want you as my friend, Jul… But I also want you to be happy. Don't… don't pin it all on me. Please." Her voice becomes almost pleading as she looks back to him and there's a slight flinch. She's not sure what's there, but something's making her feel a bit more awkward. A bit more panicky.

"I… I should go."

"… I won't." Julian smiles a little bit, sighing and nodding. His eyes close… and those cloudy eyes reopen, and they are stable again. Back to hiding. Go away, evil little emotion. "… You told me no promises. But you wouldn't forget, either." As his hands withdraw, they go under his robe, and into his pockets. "I will -always- be your friend, Evie. I told you… I'm there as long as you want me there."

He stops, then, and breathes in… "I'm sorry." He realizes that he's made things uncomfortable. "Go."

His eyes drop to the floor for a moment, and he finally brings them back up. But he doesn't focus toward her. Instead, he works his eyes away from her… and to the window again. There's still some small pinpricks of light dotting the sky… some distant noises. "I… am going to stay here. The cool air feels amazing… and… I'd rather not go back to the Common Room like this." He begins to laugh a little… but it's not like him. It's a little forced.

"Of… of course," Eibhlin replies to the last. She's not sure how to proceed, but she's also aware that this is something she cannot fix. Not right now, at least. The teen draws in a slow breath and pulls her cloak around her, preparing to go.

And completely forgetting that Julian has her mittens still.

As she begins to leave, Julian watches her go. And as he does, he quietly keeps his hands in his pockets. That is… until he blinks a little… and flushing, a couple of moments after Evie's excused herself, he begins to groan. Tugging the mittens out of his pocket… he begins to look at them carefully. He takes both of them and lightly presses his fingers against the palm. It's not quite the same without her hands and fingers filling them. Choking back, he raises them to his face, awkwardly doublepalming his face… the mittens between his hands and face as he does. It's at this point he begins to break down, and he finds himself moving to one of the walls, just standing at one of the windows and staring down at the grounds below him. Choking, he finally begins to slump against the window sill, letting himself slide to the ground.

And then, bawl. Shaking, painful crying. The internal conflict has become too much for the fifteen year old. He's struggled with not betraying Dalaigh… a friend. And he's struggled with trying to console his feelings for Eibhlin. He's simply got to let it get out. In private… it's okay. He can cry like this. He can scream, and punch at the ground. At the end of the day… no one is hurt. Except his knuckles, maybe. He would remain in the Astronomy tower… not returning to the Common Room until midmorning twilight was threatening to creep over the horizon on the new year.

Eibhlin would be able to find her mittens that she had left with him. Inside the left mitten is a tucked away note.

"You'll get too cold without these. Stay warm, Evie.
- Jul"

And Julian would not make an appearance throughout the entire New Year Day. Instead, he would remain in his four-poster, lying and quietly keeping the wrapping on his knuckles changed.

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