How Howl Got His Name

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One-Shot

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Disclaimer: Howl's Moving Castle is property of Diana Wynn Jones and Hayao Miyazkaki. I don't own Howl's Moving Castle. Wish I did, though.

Author's Note: I forget that most people who write fan fiction for Howl's Moving Castle probably haven't read the book, so when I wrote this, I was writing with the intention of Sophie's constant… uhm, nagging, I'll call it, about being the eldest sister. BUT, she has a sister anyways in the movie so I tweaked the story to go with that.

By the way, Howl and Sophie are young here; that's why their speech is so immature (then again, Howl's always immature, haha).

In the book, Howl is actually nine years older than Sophie… But that's going to be different here for story purposes.

And also, in the book, Howl is from Wales.

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Sophie Hatter was practically crying her eyes out at the fountain on Market Square. People around her whispered and pointed, and some ladies tried to coax her to calm down. But these attempts were to no avail; Sophie Hatter wasn't about to quit crying.

"Geez, can't you pipe down?" An annoyed voice said. Sophie stopped crying for a bit to glare at the boy who was looking at her with exasperation. He was dressed in extremely bright colors, had dark, long hair and was standing in a very vain, delicate pose.

"Y-You don't know!" Sophie wailed, then continued crying louder than ever.

"Shut up!" The boy cried, flailing his hands in front of Sophie, which just made her cry even harder. People were now pointing at him, whispering.

"Did that little boy hit her or something?" A lady with a ridiculously big hat cried in outrage.

"Maybe. How mean!" Her friend replied.

"I know!"

If there's one thing this boy did not like; it was people associating him with ugly things. Being mean was ugly. Sticking his nose up in the air, he ran up to Sophie and sat down next to her.

"There, there." He said stiffly, patting his hand on her shoulder with very hard, uneven movements, as if he was beating a drum.

"Ow!" Sophie pushed his hand away. The boy's face screwed up in anger and was about to scream at-

"Aww, he's trying to comfort that little girl!" The lady with the hat said.

The boy immediately changed his face and said, "I'm sorry about the mean thing I said! Won't you stop crying?"

Sophie eyed him suspiciously. "Why?" She asked, slowly.

"Because! I hate it when pretty girls cry!" The boy exclaimed.

That did the trick. Rarely did anyone call Sophie, who was plain, pretty. A blush crept onto Sophie's cheeks and she giggled. "What's your name?" She asked shyly.

"Howell. Howell Jenkins." The boy gave her a toothy grin. "Why were you crying?"

"I have a baby sister." Sophie said, darkly. "She's four years old. And she's way prettier than me. I used to think that having a baby sister would be really fun, but now she gets all the attention because I'm ugly and she's pretty!"

Howell gave her a surprised expression. "Sophie, Sophie! You're beautiful!"

Sophie blushed again, looking pleased. Then, as if realizing something, she shot him a look of shock and suspicion. "Hey, wait a minute- how did you know my name was Sophie?"

Howell realized his mistake. "Uhm, uh… Er- Y-you told me?" He said weakly.

"No I didn't!" Sophie pointed an accusing finger at him.

Howell shot his hands up defensively. "Okay, okay. You caught me." He looked around, then closed in on Sophie. "Promise you won't tell anyone my secret?"

"Promise! I never break a promise!" Sophie said, beaming.

"Okay. I'm a wizard. I used a spell to find out your name." Howell whispered so quietly that Sophie almost didn't hear him.

Sophie's eyes widened. "A wiz-?!"

"SHH! You promised!"

Sophie clamped her mouth dramatically with her hand and nodded vigorously. A couple of by passers chuckled at the cute sight.

"T-Then you're like the Witch of the Waste?" Sophie asked in a soft voice so no one else could overhear.

Howell looked offended. "Of course not! I'm a good wizard. My uncle's a good wizard- he's teaching me magic. I'm his apprentice." He said smugly.

Sophie gave him a look of awe. "Wow! How old are you?"

At this, Howell puffed out his small chest. "I'm almost ten!"

Sophie pouted. "I'm only eight."

Howell patted her comfortingly. "It's okay. One day, you'll be ten too!" Sophie brightened considerably at this prospect.

"So what do wizards do, Howl?" Sophie asked, swinging her legs. Her envy of her sister was long gone.

"My name's Howell!"

"That's what I said- Howl." Sophie frowned, confused.

"No, you said Howl. My name is How-e-ll. With that little e accent!"

Sophie rolled her eyes. "Howl sounds much cuter."

Howell pouted and crossed his arms in front of him.

"Okay, okay, How-e-ll- is that better?" Sophie said, stressing out his name for emphasis.

"No! Now that you've called me Howl, you can't take it back!" Howell cried.

Sophie sighed. "Okay, fine. Howl. Happy?"

Howell scoffed and looked that other way.

"Oh no!" Sophie gasped suddenly. Howell forgot about their little name argument and frowned at her.

"What's wrong?"

Sophie pointed to the sun, which was setting. "It's almost dark already! I need to get back!"

Howell pouted. "Can't you stay a little longer?" Sophie shook her head, gathered her skirt and stood up.

"Will you be back?" Sophie asked.

Howell shook his head grimly. "I'm only here to visit for one day. I live in Wales- that's in a practically whole other world."

Sophie face fell. "Well, it was nice meeting you, Howl!" Blushing furiously, Sophie bent down really quickly and gave Howell a quick peck on the lips; both their first kisses.

"Bye!" Sophie shouted as she ran off, still blushing.

Howell sat there, stunned. He sat there for a very long time, thinking over the conversation and going red as a tomato over Sophie's little kiss. He didn't notice anything else until his uncle came back.

"Howell? You ready to go home?" Howell's uncle said.

Howell nodded slowly and got up to join his uncle. "Hey, can you tell everyone to call me Howl from now on?"

-The End-

Ta-da!

Can you find the quote that was DIRECTLY from the movie? Can you?! Kudos to anyone who does! And tell me in the review, I want to know!

Speaking of reviews, REVIEW PLEASE, I beg of you! For Howl's sake, review!