Disclaimer: None of Mr. Magorium's Wonder Emporium characters or magical wonderfulness belong to me.
(A/N: I am painfully aware of the fact that the dialogue is exactly as it is in the movie. I just twisted the scene around a bit so it was from Henry's POV)
He was an idiot, he concludes finally as he stares at the tree in front of him moodily. There is really no other way around it, no word that can describe him better. Insurance documents. My God, what had he been thinking? Mr. Magorium could be dying and there he was, talking to Mahoney about insurance papers. Idiot.
"Morning." Mahoney's voice says, breaking his train of thought and then, before he knows it, he is standing up and walking after her.
"Hi. Morning. How's it going?" he asks and frowns. He is acting like a hormonal teenager boy all over again. Damn those butterflies. Damn her for waltzing into his life. Before her, he had been married to his work and it had been a happy relationship, right? But now, his work suddenly doesn't seem enough.
"Look, mutant, I'm just grabbing a few of Mr. Magorium's things. Then I'm leaving for the day," she says from behind the counter as she fishes for something underneath. And he is almost surprised at the disappointment that follows her words.
"Yeah. I'm just here to work in the office," He pauses, looking down at his feet. His shoes, polished to perfection, look almost out of place in the deserted store. "Unless, you want me to work out here…"
She barely even glances at him as she comes out from behind the counter, holding a green bag. "You can work wherever you like, mutant," she says. He scowls, that was not what he meant.
"No, no… I mean," he pauses again as he organizes his thoughts. "In case there's, you know, a toy emergency… Someone really needs something, you know. Tiddlywinks." He gives her a nervous smile as he adds: "I could help them."
"You could help," Mahoney says with an impish smile, and for some reason he can't bring himself to feel offended by the amount of incredulity in her voice.
"Yeah, you know," he continues. "In case it's little Timmy's birthday and somebody is a handful of Lego's short or whatever."
"Do you want to run the store for the day?"
"Yeah, I'm here already…"
She gives him that smile again, the one he's sure she only gives to the 'just guys', before saying: "Mutant."
"Okay. I'd...," he clears his throat nervously. "I'd like to run the store. I've been waiting two hours in a very uncomfortable bench," Okay, so that bench hadn't actually been uncomfortable and maybe he hadn't been waiting two hours but Mahoney didn't seem to mind his exaggeration, "to offer to run the store for the day."
"Why?" Her eyebrows are raised slightly, her eyes shinning and her voice laced with confusion.
"Because…uh… I –" Great, now he was stuttering. "Because I'm a jerk. I just…I felt awful because I don't want you to think that I didn't care, and I do care. It's just… some people bring flowers, or send a card, or hug people, you know," He shrugged, not exactly sure of why he was explaining this to her. She probably didn't care, but she was looking at him, and she wasn't laughing so he continued. "I make sure people's papers are all filled out properly and-" He paused looking around the story. "So… today I thought I'd try something different. 'Cuz I like you and I do wanna help," he finished meeting his eyes with hers. Wait. What had he just said? I like you? Mutant, you are an idiot, he thought, shaking his head when she saw her smile. She was probably thinking… but, he did a double take, it wasn't her usual 'you're a just-guy smile'. It was an actual smile, one that reached her eyes and made them shine more than they usually did. God, he might just go crazy if they kept shinning like that for too long.
"Mutant…" Her voice breaks the silence suddenly pulling you out of your thoughts again. "When you look at me, what do you see?"
Fuck. What was he supposed to answer now? I see a beautiful woman? She was going to run out of the store faster than he could finish the sentence. But her eyes are still shinning and his head doesn't seem to be working like it should so he mutters the first thing that comes into his head: "Really pretty eyes?"
She laughs, looking around and blushing a bit. He feels his own lips curling into a tiny smile of his own. He made her laugh! He, Mutant, actually managed to make Mahoney laugh.
"No. I mean…" she pauses, frowning. "Like, do you see a sparkle?"
Silence. "Like now? Like, glitter? On your face?" He answers stupidly, blinking. The woman is a goddamn comet and she's asking him if she sparkles? And, anyway, he decides, comets don't sparkle they twinkle.
"No, like…" She sighs, "A sparkle."
"Like what kind of sparkle?" He asks starting to get annoyed at himself. Can he really be that stupid?
"Like something reflective of something bigger that's trying to get out," she explains, and her eyes are not shinning anymore. Surprisingly, that fact makes it even harder to concentrate. "You know what? Never mind." And now she's leaving. She can't leave – he doesn't want her to. So of course, his mouth dos what it does best and starts rambling:
"No, no, no. It might not be so much of a sparkle. Maybe more of a twinkle?" Like a comet.
"Forget it." And her smile is back; he just managed to turn back into a just-guy in under two seconds. Way to go, Mutant.
His brain really should shut up. It's hard to concentrate over the cries of: Don't let her leave, you moron that are echoing around your head."You've got the thing that you do with your hands."
She giggles. "That's a quirk."
"Quirk's not a sparkle?" He asks and can't help the surprised 'Oh' coming out of his lips when she says no. He loves that about her – maybe that really is what she was talking about. That thing that she calls a quirk may actually be her own brand of sparkle – not like a comet, simply like Mahoney.
"Yeah…" she mutters uncomfortably before she turns to leave, leaving him standing there - staring after her.
He sighs. Mutant, he decides, you really are an idiot. There's definitely no other way around it.