(1938-09-01) The Deal
Details for The Deal
Summary: Augustin and Lillian meet, find they have something in common, and come up with a solution to their mutual problem.
Date: 1938-09-01
Location: Hogwart's Express

Augustin just so happens to be the only boy in the car at the moment. Not that it's empty of the effects of others, but whoever it was that left the battered trunk and the enormous toad on the seat, isn't here. Augustin takes the time to enjoy the view, while his sketchpad lies open on his lap. He idly taps a chewed-on pencil against the page, making a soft drumming noise that fills the small cabin. At first glance, one would almost not recognize him - over the summer he's changed quite a lot from the thin, small boy - mostly by shooting up several centimeters and putting on quite a lot of muscle (not that he's bulky). Also, gone are the spots that used to plague his skin, and the graphite stains on his sleeves and tie.

The door to the compartment opens a moment later to reveal Lillian. Bright blue eyes sweep through the compartment eyeing the toad in distaste before her eyes land on the boy. He doesn't look familer but she hardly knows everyone in Hogwarts. "Hello. Would you mind if I joined you?" She smiles faintly at him and brushes a bit of her long hair back behind one ear while she waits. Her trunk sits on the ground beside her, apparently she has yet to find a seat.

"Hmm?" says the boy. He blinks a few times, letting his eyes adjust from the bright scenery outside to the dim interior. "Of course, of course," he says, gesturing to the seat across from him. "John's down the corridor visiting. That's his toad." He nods to the amphibian, who blinks impassively at them. The boy is wearing a Hufflepuff tie. "Oh, ho, a Slytherin, are you? Haven't I seen you playing Quidditch?"

Lillian smiles a bit brighter and moves in bring her trunk along. She puts it under a seat out of the way and sits down. Smoothing out her skirt she looks up at the boy and nods. "Yes you have. I play beater for the Slytherin team. My name is Lillian Yaxley." She offers him her hand while studying him intently. "Judging by the tie you are a Hufflepuff but I'm afraid I don't know your name." She looks somewhat curious but other than that she is rather hard to read.

"Augustin Rousseau," the boy offers in return, reaching across to shake her hand and beaming at her. "Very nice to meet. Don't blame you for not recognizing me. I grew a lot over the summer," he says. "Got my hair cut. Cleared up the spots. Grew a set of shoulders. Yaxley, hum. Pure-blood, by any chance?" he asks curiously. He's still shaking her hand, the look on his face affable and curious. Shake, shake, shake.

"Nice too meet you as well." Lillian seems amused by the talkative boy, slightly curious as well and doesn't pull her hand back just yet. She nods once at the question. "Yes I am. You are as well I believe?" She thinks the surname sounds familer anyway she thinks for a moment trying to remember where she heard it. She can't remember and settles for focusing on the boy in front of her. Slowly she draws her hand back with a soft smile.

Once Lillian pulls her hand away, Augustin seems to realize he'd been shaking it all that time. He laughs a bit and grins, sitting back again. "Yes, indeed, or so my parents tell me. Not that I've much reason to disbelieve them, what with the family tree framed in gold-guilt taking up the entire wall of my father's study. Monstrous thing," he notes. "Apparently I'm related to Charlemagne, can you imagine?" He laughs again. "Tons of pressure to live up to that kind of heritage, I'm sure you can relate."

"Yes I can relate…now more than ever. It's just me and my father left and the man is desperate to marry me off. Honestly I think he's trying to get rid of me but there isn't much I can do about it yet." Lillian looks thoughtful a moment studying Augustin with a faint and somewhat nervous smile. "I'm sorry its been on my mind alot lately but I didn't mean to burden you with that kind of talk."

Augustin's eyes widen. "Really?" he asks, leaning forward. "My parents have been pressuring me about exactly the same thing!" He squints at her. "How desperate is he, exactly? Desperate enough that if you said, 'Hullo, Dad, I've found a Pure-Blood Boy, we're madly in love, and we plan to marry, but first we want a rather long engagement while he finishes training for his career,' he'd jump at it?"

Lillian's eyes widen breifly. The she smirks leaning forward as well till she is looking him right in the eye. "He likely would yes. I was planning on finding a pure-blood boy in a similar situation and seeing if something couldn't be worked out between us. I want to be allowed to pursue my dream of playing professional Quidditch other than that I'm not very demanding about the arrangement." She smiles again though this time is a true and bright smile full of hope and a hint of mischief. "Why do you ask? Are you interested in this…arrangment?"

"Professional Quidditch?" Augustin beams. "I'd like to go to Paris to train under a master artist, myself. That will take quite a long time I'd imagine. /Years/." He glances at the door, which is shut, and then back at her. "I would be quite interested in such an arrangement, yes, indeed," he says. "You and I, let's be co-conspirators, eh? Our parents will be thrilled and leave us alone for a few years. If you fall in love with someone, or if I do, we'll call it off. These things happen after all, am I right?" He grins.

Lillian nods looking pleased. Her eyes follow his to the door before she looks back at him. "That sounds like a good plan yes. I think we have a deal and a good one at that." She grins back. "We can spend some time together this year and then after we have been seen together some I will write my father and let him know that I have found someone I want to marry. He will probably want meet you but after that he will likely back off and leave us alone." She looks delighted by this and her smile is bright and happy.

"Sounds good," Augustin agrees. "How much time do you suppose is enough?" He rubs his chin thoughtfully. "First we should spend time together. Studying, perhaps? A week? Two?" He drums his pencil on his sketchpad a few more times. "Then perhaps we should go steady. Maybe go to a dance together or something. Pretend to snog in dark corners, that sort of thing. After you father comes… you should buy youself a ring and all."

Lillian listens and nods at the end. "I think two weeks before we actually go steady would be best. That way it doesn't seem too rushed. I will buy a ring at some point as well yes. Okay the plan seems solid…um thank you by the way. I was worrying about this for the longest time but now it seems like it will all work out." She leans in and kisses him on the cheek softly before leaning back in her seat with a smile. "Thank you."

"Two weeks seems reasonable," Augustin agrees. "I should pitch in for half of the ring - you're doing me as much a favor as I'm doing you, after all." He freezes when she kisses his cheek, then leans back and rubs it with his fingers, laughing. "Better not do that too much unless absolutely necessary," he advises, humor in his voice. "I might forget we're acting. You are quite pretty, after all!" He smiles. "So, we should tell each other a bit about ourselves, right-ho?"

Lillian smiles back sweetly. "I make no promises. You are rather handsome yourself and I am known as the impulsive Slytherin for a reason." Her lips turn upward even more and she winks at him. The question has her nodding in agreement and fixing him with a curious look. "Would you mind going first?" She folds her hand in her lap and keeps her attention on him completely. The nearby toad chooses this moment to croak loudly and she jumps slightly breaking her focus to give the creature a withering stare. She turns back to Augustin with a slight blush clearly a bit embaressed.

Augustin jumps at the toad's loud croak, as well, and then laughs at himself, running a hand across his messy hair. He might be blushing a little from her compliment. "Nothing very interesting," he starts. "My parents, Claude and Juliette, are from France, but I was born here. We have a small estate in the south. I have two sisters, one older, Francine, and one younger, Lizette. Old family. Pure-blood. Let's see… Rather good at art, particularly wood sculpture. But I would love to learn from a master. Oh! I am allergic to bees. Nearly died from a sting, once, so I try to avoid them if possible."

Lillian listens intently with a soft smile on her face. "It sounds like you are more interesting than you think. Lets see…My father is Howard Yaxley my mother Amie died in childbirth along with my younger brother. I never really knew her as I was two when it happened, my father…our relationship is….strained and this is the reason. Anyway I enjoy playing Qudditch and hope to play professional one day. I also like dancing and playing card games and I tend to enjoy being in the spotlight. My housemates say I'm a drama queen but there are far worse things to be called in my opinion." She smiles softly. "Do you have a favorite subject at school? I would take a guess that you are in the Arts club since you seem to like sculpture. Umm maybe you could show me one of your creations at some point? I have no talent for art myself but I can appreicate those that do."

"Your relationship with your father is strained because she died when you were two?" Augustin repeats. "Well… I'm not quite certain how that makes much sense," he says, seeming puzzled. He listens to the rest of her list, nodding along the way. "I'm fairly good at dancing when I have to be," he mentions. "Not so much at card games." He nods at her question. "I quite like Charms and Transfigurations. Not too bad at Dark Defense." He nods, agreeing with her. "I am in the Art Club, and the Dueling Club… though I didn't have much time for either, last year. I was quite distracted with some of my pieces, which I'd be happy to show you, some time. We can count that as one of our decoy dates."

Lillian bites her lower lip and looks at him with a calculating stare as if trying to tell how much she should reveal. "He resents me. I think he blames me for her death or maybe he blames himself and takes it out on me. He wanted a boy and I was always a dissapointment to him thats all I really understand about it." She looks troubled, lowering her head and finally sighs shaking her head softly. "I try but he always finds something wrong with what I do…he is an angry and bitter man and finally I decided to stop wasting my time trying to get his approval." She looks up at him trying to force a smile as she nods in agreement to the suggestion.

"But… you were /two/," Augustin says, quite baffled by now. "It just doesn't make any sense." He gives her a pitying sort of look. "Seems like you need to get out from under his thumb rather urgently. Just a tic — am I your knight in shining armor?" he asks suddenly, brightening at the suggestion and seeming rather amused by the thought. "Rescuing a fair damsel in distress?"

Liilian shrugs her shoulders lightly. "It doesn't make sense but its still quite true. I would very much like to get away." Her eyes widen a bit at that last part and she laughs softly. "Maybe you are…why? Do you want to be my hero then?" Lillian's amused smile is back and she seems to brighten up. She tilts her head to the side studying him carefully with a soft and amused smile on her lips. "I think you would make a good hero."

Augustin laughs and shakes his head. "Must have me confused with a Gryffindor," he says. "I'll make a better chum than hero, you'll have to make do." He shrugs a bit, smiles at her.

Just then another Hufflepuff comes in, a lad their age with dark hair and bright grey eyes. "What ho!" he greets them, instantly spying Lillian. He squeezes onto the seat next to her and endows her with a charming, crooked little smile. "I'm John," he introduces himself. "And you are by far the prettiest girl I've seen Gus chat up. Listen," he says, glancing at Augustin for a second before leaning in toward Lillian. "If he says anything untoward to you, let me know and I'll thrash him for you."

Augustin just shakes his head and laughs.

"I suppose I will." Lillian pauses as the door opens. She offers the new comer a smile and when he introduces himself she nods. "Thank you for the compliment John. I am Lillian its very nice to meet you." She laughes softly at the comment smiling and looking between them booth. "Thank you for the offer but I think I'm capable of defending my own honor. My methods are a bit…unorthadox but a few hits with a Quittich bat or a bludger works wonders on improper additudes." It is unclear if she is teasing or not but the mischievious glint in her eyes gives them a hint.

"I like her," says John. "Pretty Lillian, would you like to go out with me?" he asks. "First Hogsmeade weekend, I'll buy you a butterbeer." He gives her his most beguiling expression. "Say yes," he murmurs. He's really quite good-looking.

Augustin raises his eyebrows at his friend, but turns to Lillian. "A Quidditch bat, eh? Remind me never to get you angry." He grins at her.

Lillian stuides John a moment smiling sweetly. A thoughtful look crosses her face and for a moment it looks as if she will say yes. She leans back in her seat keeping her eyes locked on him. "No. Thank you for the offer but I don't think so." She turns to Augustin with a smirk. "Don't worry. I'm not that easily angered. I save my anger for those who truly deserve it."

Augustin chuckles. "Don't suppose you'd agree to a butterbeer with me?" he asks her, glancing between her and John. John raises his eyebrows and looks amused by his friend's gall.

Lillian gets that thoughtful look again and after a moment she nods her head to Augustin. "I think I can agree to that yes." Her lips quirk upwards into a smile. "Does the first Hogsmeade weekend sound good to you?"

John's eyes nearly pop out of his head when she agrees to a date with Augustin.

"No," Augustin replies to Lillian, smiling from ear to ear. "That's too far away. You and me, butterbeer, the lake, and a picnic basket, Friday night, after dinner. You bring dessert."

Lillian smiles happily and nods. "Very well. Its a date then." She turns to look at John amusement in her eyes but doesn't comment instead pulling out a book and starting to read for the rest of the ride.

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