purpose: shits and giggles
also: to apologize for not updating Ad Infinitum in forever. I've been trying to finish up my current novel WIP, so AI is on the backburner.
She met him when she stopped her walk beside the small wooden house which was lit by a pair of torches in iron brackets. During the sunset he had leaned against the side of the house but now that it was dusk and she was here he straightened up and seemed surprised. The girl eyed him and didn't know if his surprise was real.
"You're here," she said.
"I've come to make the trade."
"We agreed on it, yes."
"That's why I'm here."
"That's why you're here," he said.
"You have the book."
"You have the knife."
"How did you know?"
"Because that was our agreement."
"I meant how did you know in the first place that I came across it."
The boy and the girl walked down a long sloping field past a tree that moved without the help of the wind and past a dark lake which was rippling and reflecting the sky. The dog in the wooden house howled after them. The howl was cut short when the dog's master silenced him with a command.
"Are you going to answer my question?"
"I don't know."
"You should. I wish you would simply answer the questions I ask instead of taking three owls per inquiry."
"I'm here and we are speaking. I see no owls."
"How did you know?"
"About the presence of owls?"
"The knife. Tell me."
"A friend is better-informed than I."
"Do you have friends?"
"I don't think so," the girl said.
They stopped walking at the edge of a forest. The forest was wide and dark. The darkness came from behind the trees although shapes were somewhat visible where the leaves of the trees partially covered the moon which was rising slowly in the sky. The girl drew her wand, which was an inch shorter than the boy's and more flexible. He looked at the wand. He disliked drawn wands when two people were not dueling. It was uncivilized.
"You should put your wand away," the boy said.
"If I did that I would be stupid."
"Certainly you aren't."
"I know. It won't go until you answer my question."
He looked at the trees and at the grass. There were footprints in the grass.
"Your friend told me you had the knife."
"I knew it was a lie. You don't have friends, you have minions."
"The one with the blonde hair."
"Luna shouldn't have said that."
"She shouldn't have said that to you."
"Show me the book please."
"Yes," said the boy, and withdrew the book from his cloak. It was covered in brown leather and he had stolen it from her dormitory while she slept. If he gave it back he would simply steal it again soon. He wanted to have the book and the knife. He did not want to be unreasonable. If the girl had the book and the knife she could return to her time.
"Why won't you give me that?"
"Because I don't think you ought to have something this old and valuable."
"That's a lie. Tell me where you found it."
"In the library."
"You're still lying to me," the girl said. She looked at the book and reached out to touch its pages but the boy moved the book so her hand fell upon the air and moved back to her side. "Tell me a reason," the girl said.
"No reason. It's stupid."
"What's the reason?"
"I said it's a stupid reason."
"Harry says stupid things to me. Ron says stupid things."
He looked at the cover of the book and thought about telling her and tapped the cover of the book with his index finger. He looked at the girl and her hair. He was looking at her when it started raining.
"It's raining," the girl said.
"You figured that out all by yourself. I am impressed."
The girl pushed him. He moved backward and stumbled over a tree root that protruded slightly from the dirt that glistened in the rain. He righted himself. Leaning forward, he kissed her. The girl's lips were very cold.
He stopped kissing her.
"Why did you do that?"
"I thought you might think about it after I give you the book." He handed her the book. And he handed her the knife.
"You knew I didn't have the knife," the girl said, and turned from the boy.
"I've never spoken to Luna."
"I would have found it."
"You wouldn't have found anything."
"I have it now."
"Why will you leave?"
"There's no reason to stay," the girl said, and put the knife and book into her bag.
"There might be a reason to stay."
The girl did not reply.
"You could think of a reason to stay. I'm sure."
The girl looked at his eyes and appeared to be thinking. Behind her the trees shook in a wind that felt colder than it was.
"It's still raining," said the girl. She walked away up the hill in the direction of the castle which was standing on a grass sea in the nighttime underneath the gleam of the stars.
The boy moved back his wet hair from his face. He was cold and uncomfortable. He thought he might go.