(1938-01-20) Getting To Know You
Details for Getting To Know You
Summary: Eamon and Kimiko have their first date, and learn a lot more about each other.
Date: January 20, 1938
Location: Gryffindor Common Room
Related: Distraction

At 5 o'clock, Eamon waited for Kimiko to appear, wearing the nicest slacks and least ugly sweater he owns. He even tried to do his hair with marginal success. He even managed to magic a flower to give her, and he holds it in an anxious hand. It's cold out, but at least it's not snowing. Their walk to the villiage won't be horrible.

It's nearly ten after five before Kimiko appears at the top of the stairs to the girls' dormitory. The sound of giggling girls emanates from behind her. Clearly, the date with Eamon is no secret. Kimiko's hair is pulled tightly back into a little bun, save for a few locks allowed to frame her face. She is dressed in a simple sky blue dress, with short sleeves that dangle around her shoulders. She lingers at the top step, smiling down at Eamon, and only when she descends does she start to put on her winter cloak. "You look very handsome, Eamon."

It's the giggling that draws his attention, just as he's starting to get nervous that she might have forgotten or something. Eamon looks up and his mouth gapes open. "I, you look… wow… um." Blinking owlishly he watches her descend. "Aren't you going to be cold?" he asks, and then looks relieved when she starts to pull her cloak on. "Oh, right." The tips of his ears turn pink and then suddenly he thrusts his arm out, flower extended. She's still a bit away when he does it though, so he stands there dopily with his arm stuck out, just waiting.

Kimiko lights up and skips over to receive the flower, cradling it as gently as if it were made of glass. "Thank you. It's lovely." She gives it a sniff, closing her eyes a moment to take in the scent.

Eamon smiles in response when she takes the flower. "You're welcome. Well, shall we?" he pulls his own cloak on, makes sure he has his wand and pats his pocket for his money, and then offers his arm once he's sure he's all in order.

Kimiko nods and slips her arm into his, changing position three times before settling on what she believes is appropriate. "Yes, let's. Do I get to know we're going? Or is it a surprise?"

"Nowhere special," replies Eamon with a grimace. "I thought we might try Rosie's Caff. I've never been there before and it seemed…quaint." He chews on his lower lip and glances down at her as he leads her through the portal into the hallway. The picture swings shut behind them and they're left to descend seven floors of changing stair ways in relative peace.

Kimiko beams happily at the suggestion of Rosie's Caff. "I've never been there, either. We can discover it together!" Her little legs take a step and a half for every one of his, but she's bubbling with more than enough energy to keep up. She gives the few students that spot them proud grins, waving to those she knows.

Eamon just looks bashful as he leads Kimiko through the halls and out to the grounds. Finally he clears his throat and smiles down at her. "You didn't have to dress up, you know. I feel like I should take you somewhere fancier." Not that he has much choice, Hogsmeade isn't exactly 'fancy'.

Kimiko looks down at the dress. "Is this too much? I just wanted to look…pretty. For you." The last few words come out with a soft blush and a meek smile. She idly twirls the flower in her fingers, the petals brushing her cheek.

"You look very pretty. But you always look pretty." Eamon stares up at the gray sky and reaches across to pat her hand resting against his arm. "I hope you don't think I don't appreciate it, I just want you to know… you'd look good no matter what you wore. You don't have to try to impress me."

Kimiko starts walking just a half-inch closer to Eamon. "Yes I do. I should try to impress you, if…if I want you to notice me more than other girls."

Eamon absorbs the extra space between them by tucking his arm in closer to his side without comment. "I don't think you need to worry about that, Kimiko," murmurs Eamon, glancing down at her. He /did/ spill butterbeer on himself just yesterday, after all.

Kimiko shrugs, smiling with satisfaction. Of course, she still has every intention of trying to impress. But it's nice to hear that she doesn't have to. Eager to reach their destination, she subtly quickens her pace.

Eamon will continue to compliment her on it, too, and assure her it isn't necessary. Kind of his thing. The time, however, does pass quickly and soon they are in the village and turning onto the street to the little cafe.

Kimiko steps into the restaurant with the caution of an explorer entering some newly discovered tomb. Her lips form an "O" as she takes in the decor. "Oh, I like this. It's very cozy." She sniffs the air, "And I love the smell of fresh baking, don't you?"

"I do," sighs Eamon happily. "It reminds me of home." He looks around and picks a table by one of the draped windows, holding a seat out for her to take courteously.

Kimiko sits with a grateful bob of her head. "Will you t ell me about your home?" She leans forward slightly, in listening posture.

Eamon presses her into the table gently and then comes around to seat himself across from her. "Only if you'll tell me about yours. Let's see. Well. My mother is a witch, and my father is a Muggle. Only, My father and I didn't know she was a witch until I got my letter. My father runs a lighthouse, just as his father did, and his father before that. It's peaceful, in it's own way. My father expects me to go into the family trade." From the look on his face, it's clear what he thinks of THAT.

Kimiko seems to get the idea, or thinks she does. "And…you don't want to? It could be interesting. How many people can say they operate a lighthouse?" She treads no further, gauging his reaction before it looks like she's siding against him on the issue.

Eamon shrugs. "Not many, I suppose, but the government's been trying to move all of the lighthouses to automation for awhile anyway… And I don't want to be chained to a tiny island in the Irish sea for the rest of my life." Blue eyes flick up to meet hers. "I'm sure you can understand not wanting to do something just because your family decides you should?"

Kimiko furrows her brow at his words, and after a moment, nods vehemently. "Yes, I understand completely. No wonder you want to travel so much. Had you lived on the island your whole life?"

"I thought you would." Eamon picks up a napkin, unrolling the silverware from it. A waitress approaches with menus and leaves them to decide. "Just home and Hogwarts. My family…we have enough to live a nice life but the extras like vacations? Well, my dad can't leave the lighthouse, anyway, so I guess it wouldn't matter." He grimaces and glances over the menu. "Your turn."

Kimiko tilts her head. "My turn for what? Wait…he can't leave? There's nobody to run it if he's not there? No assistant or anything?" She winces with a sudden realization. "I mean…other than you."

"Your turn to tell me about your family and home," replies Eamon. They had a deal after all. "No, there's nobody. Just my mom and me."

"Oh! Right, of course." Kimi shifts in her seat, pondering where to start. "Well, we have a family business as well. Saito Shipping. My great-grandfather, Nobuo Saito, started it during the Meiji Restoration in Japan. We specialize in imports from the Far East."

"Meiji Restoration?" asks Eamon uncertainly, his smile flimsy. "And isn't Japan the Far East?" His eyebrows knit. "What kind of things do you import?"

Kimiko explains, "Emperor Meiji restored Imperial rule to Japan in 18…68? I think? But he wanted to modernize the country, so he sent people all over the world to bring back Western science and learning. My great-grandfather was sent to study at Oxford. But he fell in love with England, so after he married his betrothed, he came back and started Saito Shipping. He realized that there was a market for things that the English would consider 'exotic' from the Orient. All sorts of things. Art, literature, food, traditional medicines…just about anything someone might want from the East, we can get for them."

"Ahh, I see," replies Eamon, suddenly enlightened. "But…I thought your grandfather lives in Japan?"

Kimiko shakes her head. "My great-grandfather. But, no. Forgive me, I wasn't clear. He was born there, but he lives here now. That's why I'm a British citizen, and not a Japanese citizen. All of us that are descended from him have been born here."

"This is all very confusing," says Eamon with a laugh. "I thought you couldn't go to Japan because your… grandfather, great-grandfather? was waiting to pounce and marry you off."

Kimiko smiles, nodding in agreement. "It's complicated, I know. It isn't so much that I can't go to Japan. Though it might be risky, because he has many friends there. But that's why I stayed at Hogwarts over the holiday. If I even go back to London, he might try to send me to Japan to get married."

"I see," says Eamon thoughtfully. "Well. Isn't there something you could do to make yourself…unmarriable if that happened? Be absolutely repulsive, I mean…" His face lights up. "You can turn your groom into a mouse, or give yourself warts, or… Pick your nose!" Leave it to a boy.

Kimiko laughs, wrinkling her nose and shaking her head vehemently. "Oh, yuck! It probably wouldn't matter anyhow. Most likely, my betrothed doesn't have a choice, either. He would have to marry me, no matter how ugly or gross I am. Well, as long as I did not bring dishonour to the family. But that…that would be awful."

Eamon presses his lips together. "More awful than forcing two people who don't know each other to marry and live together forever? What if he doesn't like sculpture, or dancing, or weird food, or adventures, or quidditch…Or Witches?…" Eamon can think of all manner of things that Kimiko likes, is, does, that somebody might not like!

Kimiko sighs. "I'm not saying I want to go through with it. I don't. I want to live in England, and be free to do what suits me. But…I know that my refusal will bring shame to my family. I won't give in…but it will be very hard on me and my parents."

Eamon scowls, though it's not directed at her, precisely. "That's just…" Sighing, he unclenches his fists and changes the subject abruptly. "What are you having?"

Kimiko grimaces apologetically. "I'm sorry, I don't mean to paint such an awful picture of my family. They can be wonderful, too. Even my great-grandfather. He has the most amazing stories about Japan. He was even in the Emperor's presence, once! Really, I'm sorry. We're supposed to be having a good time. I didn't mean to make you upset." She glances between him and the menu nervously.

"You didn't upset me," sighs Eamon, reaching across the table to touch her hand lightly. "I mean I am upset, but not…at you." He takes another deep breath and says, "I think I'm going to have the stew with some bread. It smells too good not to."

Kimiko warms at the touch, tensing just slightly, but she doesn't pull away. "That sounds lovely. I think I'll have the same, and some hot chamomile."

Eamon is the one to pull his hand away, sensing that tenseness. He looks down, fiddling with his napkin again. "Tea sounds good," he agrees. "Shall I summon our waitress then?"

Kimiko gives a fleeting pout as he pulls away. But propriety rules, and she meekly tucks her hands into her lap. "Yes, please do." She tilts her head at Eamon. "Thank you for being concerned about me."

Propriety sucks. Eamon lifts his hand to summon the waitress over and makes the order for both of them before returning his gaze to Kimiko. "What will you do this summer, Kimi? You can't stay at Hogwarts."

Kimiko exhales upward. "I don't know. From everything I have read, wizarding law protects me. So if I used magic to stop him from sending me away, I don't think I could get into trouble. But…I'd rather not. If my great-grandfather found out about magic, it could be bad. He has a lot of connections, and that could take the Ministry a lot of time and resources to clean up. But even if I used magic…what would I do? I think this is going to require a more practical solution. The only way I can think of to stop him from even trying is if I were already married." She chuckles.

Eamon gives Kimiko a rather long, level look. So long, in fact, that the waitress arrives with the tea pot to place between them while he's simply staring at her. "You should probably graduate before you get married," he finally points out. "In the mean time… maybe you could get a summer job and rent a place in Hogsmead or on Diagon Alley where you great-grandfather can't find you? Or stay with a friend for the summer?"

Kimiko giggles, "Of course I should graduate first. I'm not going to get married just to avoid getting married. That makes no sense. But yes…I've considered staying somewhere else. But then I'm apart from my parents." Her smile turns downward into a sad frown. "I hate putting them through this. Either they lose me to marriage, or they lose me to hiding from my great-grandfather."

"Of course," replies Eamon. "Will you pour?" There, finally something womanly he can make her do! "I don't know what to tell you, Kimiko. Just tell him no. He's just a man, and it's not 1880 anymore."

Kimiko hops so eagerly to pour the tea that she bumps right into the table. Thank goodness there was no tea yet to spill from the cups, or Eamon might have once again been doused with hot liquid. She winces apologeticially, then much more carefully picks up the teapot to pour the tea is a seemingly ritualistic manner. Such care she takes with the action, there is a palpable sense of serenity about her by the time she sits again. "He is a man, but a powerful man," she says quietly. "He does not take 'no' for an answer."

In a more modern time, Eamon might make comparisons to a lot of foul, nasty people who also don't take no for an answer but nonetheless are worthy of protecting yourself against. As it is, he simply watches her with a smile as she pours the tea for both of them. "I don't think I've ever seen someone pour tea so beautifully," he comments, testing the temperature of the cup with his hand.

"Thank you," Kimi blushes…again. "I learned the tea ceremony when I was five. I can't do it properly here…but it's a bit like that. Maybe I'll ask my parents to send me a Japanese tea set and I can perform it for you."

Eamon glances at her for a long moment and asks, "Are you sure that's a good idea? I can't imagine they'll be happy that you're dating someone."

Kimiko stares at him with a twinkling smile for a moment, then remembers to actually respond. "Oh…well…I wouldn't have to say it's because I'm dating. But…I don't think they would mind. My parents are not like my great-grandfather. They know what it's like to be pushed into a marriage. They never wanted that for me. When I turned out to be a witch, they were convinced that our prayers had been answers, and this was our ancestors' way of protecting me."

"Wouldn't they want to know why you needed a tea set?" Eamon would want to know, after all, if his daughter requested something like that while at school. "Well, if it was an ancestor, he or she was probably a Squib," teases Eamon. "Er, Kimi… were your parents 16 when they married, too?"

Kimiko nods solemnly. "Yes. Well, my mother was. Father was 18. I think she has learned to love him, in her own way. They try not to let me see it, but I'm not ignorant. I know there is no great romance between them. But there is respect, at least."

"How did they…How could you…" He frowns. "It's a strange thing, having a baby with somebody you don't love." Eamon's probably trying to imagine boinking somebody he doesn't like. Poor kid. "That would make… Your great-grandfather.. 1868, you said? He must be very old, Kimiko. Surely he'll pass away before you have to marry anyone. I just can't imagine you trapped in such a life."

"He is too stubborn to die." Kimi smirks, then dips her head guiltily at her joke. "I know it's hard to understand. But life is very different for a traditional Japanese family. By the time my parents realized that they could make their own choices, I was already on the way. But they raised me to find my own way." She grins at him. "I can't imagine that life for myself, either. Don't worry, Eamon. I won't disappear over the summer. If…if that's what you're worried about."

"You don't know that," murmurs Eamon with a sigh. Their soup arrives and he buries himself in pulling off chunks of bread to dip in the stew. "It's a long way away anyway, six months away. It's a long time."

"We'll be taking our Apparition lessons soon. I daresay I have plenty of incentive to learn it well." Kimi smirks as she digs into the soup. "But enough about that. I want to know what you like to do for fun. Other than Quidditch, of course."

Fun? What's that. "Well, I like dueling," begins Eamon. "And languages, I have been learning German and, um, a smattering of French. And of course I speak Manx."

"I should try to teach you some Japanese. It's veeery different from Western languages. But what else? I mean, there's chess, of course. Do you like to cook?" Kimi pries gently, looking for anything he might like that she can engage in as well.

"I would love to learn some japanese," says Eamon seriously. "Cook? No." Eamon's nose wrinkles. Such unmanly things! "I like… getting into trouble." He grins, taking a sip of his tea. "And… long walks. And snowball fights. And picnics, and swimming. Climbing trees, getting lost, opening locked doors."

Kimiko seems to light up another few watts with each item he mentions. "That all sounds wonderful! I love getting lost, and exploring, and…and you're a Prefect! What are you doing getting into trouble?" She giggles as she gives him a teasing look of admonishment.

"The trick to being a Prefect and still getting into trouble…is picking your trouble wisely," opines Eamon, oh so wisely. Then he winks at her. "And I don't like to cook, but I like to eat," he adds, digging into his stew.

Kimiko smirks mischievously at his sage wisdom. At his commentary on cooking and eating, she gives a demure shrug. "Well…maybe…I could cook for you…if we have a second date." Her voice goes up at the end, as if it were a question.

Eamon pauses with spoon to mouth and then finishes his bite and smiles at her. "My, one date and you've already become so bold that you're asking me out?" He nods. "Eat your food."

Kimiko turns beet red, looking down at her soup and obediently eating. "I didn't ask you out," she says meekly. "I said…'if we have a second date.' You know…if you ask me out again." She glances up hopefully through her eyelashes.

Eamon just grins at his stew and leaves her in suspense so he can finish his dinner.

Oh, what a brat! Kimiko keeps glancing up at him throughout the meal, hoping for some sign. Way to be subtle, Kimi. "So…is Manx difficult to learn?"

"No more difficult than any other Gaelic dialect," replies Eamon with a shrug, mopping up his empty bowl with the last crust of bread. "I'll tell you what…I'll teach you Manx if you teach me Japanese. Deal?"

Kimiko nods happily. "Deal!" She gets an impish grin. "Sooo…when would you like to start doing that? Perhaps…we could set aside a special time? I could even cook for us." She gives him a bobbing, suggestive nod.

Dinner complete, Eamon now settles for watching Kimiko happily. "Well. I'm free on tuesday evenings… And of course there's always weekends."

Kimiko sighs with frustration, shoulders drooping. "Are you just fiddling with me, or what? Are you going to ask me out again?" Her sudden directness melts away almost immediately as she realizes it. "I mean…Tuesday sounds lovely."

Eamon blinks at Kimiko, his smile sliding off his face. "I was planning on it, yes," he replies in consternation. "But I didn't just want to blurt it out like that." He's trying to play it cool, after all! If Mabel taught him anything, it was not to piss on legs like an excited puppy dog. "I'd planned to walk you around the village and take you to Harkiss' for a sweet before we returned to Hogwarts maybe if I was lucky you might hold my hand, and at some point when the time was right I would ask you out again." He lifts a hand to signal for the check from the waitress and sighs. "But since you've ruined that moment anyway… Kimiko, I hope you will go out with me again."

Kimiko shuts her eyes, lowering her face. "Eamon…I'm sorry. I'm an idiot." She looks back up, pleadingly. "You've been so sweet to me. I just got too excited and…I spoiled it all. Can we…maybe…forget my stupidity? I'll pretend you didn't just tell me all of your plans? Please? I promise…I'll be more patient."

Eamon quirks a smile at her. "Maybe," he agrees mischeviously, quick to forgive. "But you'd better make something really good for dinner on Tuesday."

Kimiko is just as quick to return to her former elation…though she is careful not to let it overwhelm her again. "I'll do my best." Though she contains her excitement, underneath she is as giddy as can be. Still, she manages to walk calmly on his arm, and appropriately feign surprise when they get to the candy shop. It is only when halfway up the path to the castle that she has the guts to lower her hand into his, and there is nothing feigned about the warmth that brings to her eyes.

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