Title: The way you touch me
Pairing: Neville Longbottom/Hannah Abbott
Prompt: Orchid (Beauty)
Word Count: 989
Beta: Thank you, tania_sings for your infinite patience!
Warnings: So fluffy I might pass out.
Summary: Neville proves something to his girlfriend during a snog session.
A/N: Originally written for the prompt Orchid on 30_flowers . I think this is my least favourite piece of writing in a loong time. But I couldn't work with the prompt as well as I thought I would. Sorry. There are some references to the drabble "Happy Beginnings".
IMPORTANT - PLEASE READ: If you like these Hannah/Neville ficlets and drabbles that are in chronological order. I'll agroup all of them in order in one multi-chaptered story called "Of Flowers and Love". Add that to your Alert Stories List and keep following them from there. This is the last one I'll post individually. It'll be too as a chapter in said story, of course. Well, I hope it makes any sense (I'm feeling my explaining abilities are not very good at the moment, lol). Hope you are all liking the story and keep following it =). As always, reviews are love. Thank you!
The way you touch me
"What's wrong, babe?" Neville asked as Hannah backed away from his touch for the fourth time that night.
Snogging sessions were not something Neville was an expert on, but he was more than sure that this was not supposed to happen. However it took Neville a few seconds and a look at Hannah's face to see what was happening. So, understanding her reason, he sat properly on the couch looking at the wall, with his hands folded over his lap.
"You don't want me to touch you, right? Hannah...," he sighed. "You know if-- if you're having second thoughts...you can always tell me. First I'm your friend, then I'm your boyfriend." He looked down at his folded hands. "I understand I'm not attractive and--," he murmured before being interrupted.
"What? What are you talking about? That's not it."
"Oh, really? Oh good..." His smile showed nothing but relief.
"You...you are very...very handsome, Nev." She blushed and didn't look him in the eye from her embarrassment.
Neville grinned before realizing Hannah's state and putting a straight face. He cleared his throat, thinking what to say to her. If it wasn't her feeling disgusted by him... "Then what's wrong?"
"I don't know..." she bit her bottom lip. "Maybe it's the way you touch me..."
"You think we are going too fast? I understand, Hannah, that--that was not my intention at all. I thought...I though...two months...we've been going out for two months so I thought that maybe..me..." Neville's face was as frantic as his words. They came all in a rush before he even processed the thought. The fact that he might have even tried to do something Hannah wasn't ready for made him want to smack his head against the wall.
"Nev, Neville, wait. No. I didn't mean it like that. We are not going too fast. I promise. It's just that...you...touch me...with such...awe. Like I was the most beautiful and unique piece of...crystal. Crystal that would break into pieces if you look too hard or use a bit more force than needed." Hannah started realizing what her real thoughts were just then, as she spoke. Neville looked back at her in silence. "And I'm not." She looked back into his eyes. "I'm not pretty, I'm not...breakable. I'm plain normal. I have nothing that would be remotely considered a girly, feminine feature. I'm not small and delicate. I'm clumsy and--"
She stopped mid-sentence. Neville had stood up from the couch and all but run out of the apartment with a quick "I'll be right back". Hannah followed quickly. Confusion and sadness blurred her eyesight. "Neville! Neville!" She screamed after him while running down the stairs. By the time she reached the pub, Neville was out of the building disapparating.
"Hey," he whispered from the door. Hannah was lying on her side over the couch of her small living room staring at the fireplace. "Sorry I...took off like that. I just couldn't stand you saying those things. I...I don't agree with you." Hannah opened her mouth to say something, already sitting back on the couch. Neville approached her and sat by her side. "No, now let me talk." She nodded. "Here." He handed her a purple flower with big petals.
"Why?" She whispered and Neville knew what she meant.
"It'll help me make a point." He smiled softly. With a flick of his wand, the Baby's Breath flowers she's gave him in the hospital after their failed first date came floating to the room. He caught them in the air.
"You still have them?" She asked in surprise.
"Erm...yeah. I did a charm so they'll never die." He confessed timidly, making Hannah smile tenderly at him. "I...I want you to compare these flowers."
Hannah frowned at him. "What?"
"Compare them. Do they look the same?" Neville's face showed nothing but seriousness now.
Hannah concentrated and looked for an answer besides the obvious one, trying to see what he was trying to tell her with all this. "Um...well, no. Baby's Breath flowers are small and white. And this one," she pointed at the flower in her hand, "is purple, taller and with bigger petals."
"Exactly. Are they beautiful?"
"Yes..." She still didn't understand where he was going with all this.
"Is one of them more beautiful than the other?" He lifted his eyebrows while looking at her pointedly.
"No. They are both beautiful in their own way." Hannah whispered, caressing the purple flower with her fingertips.
"Exactly! Do you understand now?" He smiled resting his back on the back of the couch.
"Erm...no, Nev." She said shaking her head.
Neville sighed and got closer to Hannah. So close that his breath tickled her face. "Both flowers are beautiful, but they are different. The fact that this Orchid I just gave you is bigger, simpler or not white, doesn't make it less beautiful than the delicate Baby's Breath flowers. See Hannah...I don't want delicate, white flowers. I have my own beautiful flower with me. And I like it just the way it is. And...and I touch it the way it deserves to be touched, the way I see it and think it should be touched. With reverence, tenderness and awe. You're beautiful, Hannah. Just like this Orchid."
Hannah stared back at him, waiting for the words sink in. She believed him. She probably wouldn't believe anybody else, but Neville was saying the truth. His tone and eyes confirmed that. He really thought she was beautiful. Hannah felt embarrassed by her stupid behaviour but this was something she needed to hear. She was thankful she had a boyfriend who really thought and believed all this.
Taking a deep breath she whispered, "What is the meaning of the Orchid?" A small smile was on her face.
Neville grinned at her before answering back. "Beauty," he said before grabbing her face between his hands and kissing her full on the mouth.