L'esprit D'escalier

A HariPo oneshot

by mew-tsubaki

Note: The Harry Potter characters belong to J.K. Rowling, not me. This pairing was discovered by my buddy, Morghen, so please give her a little mention if you write them! Thanks! It is one of many of Mew and Mor's Weird Pairings, most of which you may find in Mor's and my forum, "Mew and Mor's Weird Pairings Fan Stories," found here (Just take out the spaces!): http : / forum. fanfiction. net/ forum /Mew_and_Mors_Weird_Pairings_Fan_Stories /76194 / Read, review, and enjoy! And check out and join the forum FUN!

- ^-^3

He sat right there, right across the table, and his hand was in hers. Louis Jordan Weasley thought it highly unfair.

Oliver Wood laughed at a joke Fleur, his soon-to-be sister-in-law, had just told, even though it made little sense to Louis. Aunt Gabrielle was beside her fiancée, grinning madly as though she'd accomplished something noteworthy. To an extent, it was noteworthy, bagging Oliver Wood. He was a successful Quidditch player and he hadn't aged much past his early thirties.

Louis, at eighteen, felt somewhat like a first year around him. And that was not just because of his celebrity.

"Ah, Victoire, zat girl…" Fleur tutted. "She was supposed to be 'ere a long time ago."

"She'll be fashionably late, as always," Dominique commented as she passed drinks around the table. She sat down beside her brother. "However, I don't see any problem with starting dinner without her. May we?"

Bill rolled his eyes. "She's got a point, Fleur."

"I don't mind waiting," Oliver offered.

"Me, as well," Gabrielle stated.

"I'm hungry," Louis groaned, sitting up from his slouching position to lean on the table edge. "And the food's getting cold."

His mother gave him a stern look that reminded him of his grandmother. "Per'aps we should, ah, dig in."

Bill and Dominique shrugged, and Louis was grateful for the distraction of food. When they ate, he could focus on pushing the chicken and sauce and vegetables around on his plate. He could take as many rolls as he pleased and tear them slowly into little bits and crumbs. He could volunteer to get something from the kitchen, and he could risk that brief spot of attention on himself so long as he didn't have to see them together any longer than he had to when he was at the table.

Dinner seemed to last forever.

It didn't help when Victoire and Neville came late. Vic and her husband sat on the other side of Louis, though, so it was another welcome distraction. With Vic and Neville there, Louis could further tune out the sound of enjoyment and happiness he heard from the opposite end.

"…said 'e was going to try out for some professional Quidditch scouts," Fleur gushed. Louis' ears pricked up.

"Oh, really?" Oliver looked his way. "We should practice together sometime." He grinned and Louis looked away.

Dominique hit him in the arm. "Don't be rude. He'll be our uncle soon enough. Then you get to be as rude as you want."

"Dom!" Vic said, shaking her head.

Louis couldn't wait for supper to end.

- ^-^3

Oliver Wood wasn't really meant to enter their lives. Louis and his sisters kind of knew him as a family friend since—go figure—Oliver had fought in the war. But the most Louis had ever expected to see of his Quidditch role model had been at the commemoration ceremonies held on the anniversary of the Battle of Hogwarts.

Then Fleur had set up her sister, Gabrielle, with Oliver. And nothing had been the same since.

Louis didn't know what to think. It had been kind of nice in the beginning. At Shell Cottage, the only other wizard was his father. Neville didn't count because a) he'd married Victoire and they didn't live there and b) well, it was Neville. But Oliver brought a fresh opinion to the table—one that Louis didn't appreciate much anymore now that he sat at said table as his aunt's future husband.

This is ridiculous, the Weasley son mentally argued as he lay awake on his bed, long after everyone else had gone to sleep. He hated the times spent like this, because he never could get Oliver off his mind long enough to get a good night's rest.

It hadn't always been like this. In the beginning, Oliver was someone that Louis had liked but not cared much about. Then… Then he wanted to know more about the man his aunt loved so much. So he did his research. He read the Quidditch books, he read the magazines, he had the Prophet clippings. He listened to as many stories as he could take in one sitting from his father and his uncles. Even his Aunt Angelina shared some of the best stuff on him, and Aunt Hermione had a few good words to say about him, too.

The more information Louis was fed, the hungrier he got. The hungrier he got, the more his obsession grew. The more years that passed, the more the obsession changed into adoration, morphed into sweetened affection.

He turned on his side. He wouldn't be able to sleep tonight.

- ^-^3

By some miracle, Louis was the first one up. He got out of bed with a grunt, grimacing at his early-morning stiffy. He slipped on some jeans and a long-sleeved T-shirt and figured that a brief ride on his broom would rid him of it. Maybe the ride would even help Louis to stop thinking of Oliver…

Louis grabbed the carton of orange juice out of the fridge and drank from it. There probably would never be a time he'd stop thinking of Oliver. But maybe he could at least try to dull his feelings.

"Oh—good morning."

The Weasley son's heart jumped into his throat. He glanced at Oliver and stuck the carton back in the fridge, pausing to let the cold take care of his warm face. "…'morning."

Oliver grinned. "I take it everyone else is still asleep?"

Louis nodded. He didn't really trust his words right now.

The older wizard yawned and grabbed a nectarine out of the fruit bowl. "Hey, do you want to go for a fly around the yard?" he asked, peeling the fruit. "If you're awake enough."

"Sure." Louis was torn between the desire to escape and the want of Oliver on his own.

Oliver ate the nectarine and waited for Louis to follow him outside. "What do you say about a fly from here to the other end of the beach and then back? An easy flight to start the day."

Louis shrugged. "It doesn't matter. I'm up for whatever."

"Then an easy flight it is."

The mounted their brooms outside and Louis kicked off after his companion, deciding to take a little pleasure in just watching Oliver. He had good form and he was very fit. Louis doubted he'd ever feel so attracted to another man—or person.

"Hey, Louis, join me up here," Oliver called, looking over his shoulder.

The blonde jolted and acquiesced, hoping Oliver hadn't seen him. "What's up?"

"Nothing. But don't you think it's nicer to fly alongside your company that lag behind?"

Louis did a sort of nod/shrug and gripped his broom tighter in his hands. He squeezed his legs against his broom, wishing they'd return right then; riding his Moon Trimmer was beginning to grow painful.

"Louis…"

"Yeah?"

"I'm…sorry."

Louis stared at him. "What for?"

Oliver looked back at him. "I can't return you feelings. I love Gaby. I really do."

Louis slowed to a halt, and Oliver stopped beside him. "…oh."

"Gaby is…great. She's beautiful, talented, even gets my love of Quidditch despite not liking Quidditch herself." He smiled gently. "She can handle my ego."

A silent moment hung between them. "So it's…not because I'm a boy…?"

Oliver nervously chuckled. "I think you know the answer to thank, Lou." He ruffled his hair and patted his shoulder. "C'mon, let's head back. Some of the others might be up now." He turned back around and flew on ahead, letting Louis stew.

Louis looked up and glared at Oliver's back, hating him for not even giving Louis a chance to justify his feelings. "I am beautiful, talented, and love Quidditch, your love of Quidditch, and you, you wanker." Louis slowly flew back to Shell Cottage. "And I could've handled your ego…"

…and more.

- ^-^3

A-N-G-S-T-Y! Xo Poor Louis… ;~; Btw, a HUGE shout-out to my FFN twin, Morghen, for giving me the prompt "l'esprit d'escalier," French for "the spirit of the staircase," a term for thinking of a good comeback after it's too late. Too horribly perfect for Louis…! Xo I will make Ollie turn to him, one day! :D

Btw, Victoire/Neville & Oliver/Gabrielle are also M&MWPs, cred to me if you use them, thx. ;)

Thanks for reading and please review!

-mew-tsubaki :]

This is also my 350th FANFIC! YAAAY~!