Decided to post it tonight... Without further ado... a preview of the first chapter of Playing with Fire...


Jamie weaved in and out of the crowd as he walked through Diagon Alley, double checking the cloth bag he held in his hands. He had intended to go out and just pick up some things for himself, but had to double check he had gotten everything on the list Daisy had sent with him. She was laid up on the sofa with John tending to her latest injury - a bruised foot - and asked him to pick up some potions ingredients. Their mother had finally said that the brood would have to start taking care of their own concoctions as they were all adults now. He figured it was also partly due to the fact that with the quidditch season about to start up, she was working overtime with their uncle to expand their line of League regalia.

He was in the middle of counting the amount of strange smelling bulbs again when he ran smack dab into someone.

"Terribly sorry!" he said, looking down into the eyes of Lila Devereux. She looked just as startled to see him. He hadn't heard or seen much of her since the party after Puddlemere beat the Falcons and it still seemed a bit weird.

"It's, it's alright," she said, her hazel eyes wide as a shy smile graced her lips.

"Lila," he said. "How are you? It's been a few months," he said awkwardly. She nodded.

"Decent. Managed to get some freelance articles at Quidditch Monthly," she said. "Though… under my own name this time." He smiled.

"That's great. I didn't realize you wanted to write about quidditch," he replied. She shrugged.

"To be honest, I have always been a fan. Turns out writing about it for real is much more enjoyable than conjuring up smut," she said. The two shifted awkwardly on the sidewalk. While they had for the most part buried the hatchet after she had spent all last season trying to besmirch his sister's reputation, it was still a bit uncomfortable.

"Ehm… are you busy? Would you like to get some tea?" he asked. She lifted her eyebrows at the suggestion, amused but surprised. "I mean, only if you want to…" She laughed and shrugged.

"To be honest, I'm more of a pint girl," she said playfully. Jamie's eyebrows shot up.

"Well, then… we can hit up this little pub down the way, if you have time," he offered. Lila nodded.

"Sure," she said. The two started walking, settling into slightly uncomfortable silence. She looked up at the towering player. His hair had grown out a little since the last time she saw him, but was still short enough she could tell him from his brothers. Even if he had grown it out more, his quiet and slightly shy demeanor would have set him apart from a mile away.

"So… out doing some shopping?" she asked, glancing down at his bag. Jamie did as well, avoiding her eyes.

"Yea… I needed to replace some stuff from my broom repair kit and Daisy had a list a mile long of potions ingredients," he said.

"I didn't realize she did potions," Lila said. Jamie smiled and looked over at her.

"Yea, she's got a knack for it. Not as good as Mum, but since we've been cut off, Daisy's now become our main supplier of tonics and ointments," he said lightly. "Shop's picking up with folks wanting to get quidditch stuff before the season starts and Mum and Uncle George are working overtime." Lila laughed softly.

"I hear Weasley's Wizard Wheezes has become the popular spot for jerseys and various other things quidditch related," she said.

"He made a killing off those Pixie jerseys so started expanding. Much to Daisy's chagrin," he replied.

To be continued…


Stay tuned for the next in the Wood family saga... Playing with Fire...