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Surprises

Surprises

Ophelia grumbled all the way to the club, attempting to yank down the hem of the short, silver sequined dress that Daria forced her in. It was far too short, far too bright, far too low cut and just, far too everything. Paired with the heels that Daria had procured from somewhere that Ophelia was certain was not her closet, she felt as though tonight had disaster written all over it. She was destined to trip at some point and flash her knickers to the world.

It didn't help that Daria had then sat her down and slathered on far too much makeup and then pulled her hair out of its braid, somehow managing to get it to curl. Ophelia had barely recognized herself in the mirror once her best friend was finished.

Ophelia felt like a fish out of water as they walked past the long line and Daria sauntered up to a large wizard at the front door with a clipboard.

"Table for Daria Pucey and Ophelia Wood," she said, fluttering her eyelashes. Ophelia snorted, finding the action humorous and completely unnecessary with how the man was already ogling her. He winked and then turned his eyes to Ophelia, looking her up and down.

"You by chance related to Oliver Wood with Puddlemere United?" he asked. Ophelia frowned and opened her mouth as though she were about to ream him out, but Daria jumped in front of her first.

"They're twins. Now, our table, please," Daria said quickly. He motioned them in, then waved his wand, sending off word to someone inside that they had arrived.

Daria grabbed Ophelia's hand and dragged her inside where they were immediately hit by the loudest music in possibly the world. Daria's eyes lit up as they stood in there a moment, taking it in, though Ophelia was already starting to feel overwhelmed. Merlin, she was going to need something strong to drink if she intended to make it through the night. A tall man in expensive robes walked up to them, a smirk on his face.

"Daria, darling," he drawled as he kissed each cheek. "You look ravishing."

"Thank you, Joseph," she cooed. She then looked back at Ophelia. "This is my best friend that I was telling you about."

"Ophelia Wood, charmed," he said, holding his hand out. Ophelia stared at it a moment before taking it, but before she could shake, he lifted it up and kissed the back of her hand. "Now, if you'll follow me…"

He then turned and started walking off, Daria looping her arm through Ophelia's as they made their way through the people towards a VIP balcony.

"We are going to have so much fun tonight…"

~~~

Ophelia found herself swaying to the music in her chair as she sipped at whatever drink Daria had made up for her and looked over the balcony at the dance floor below. Apparently, the table came with a number of bottles of alcohol and chasers. After a few drinks, Ophelia began relaxing and wondering why she had been so nervous about coming out tonight.

Ah, there it was.

Ophelia looked over as a tall, dark-haired man walked up, scowling, with another bloke with sandy blonde hair. Flint and Higgs. She wasn't sure just why Flint had a problem with her, but figured it was guilty by association - she was Oliver Wood's twin, after all. Which was wrong, in her mind. Not like it was her fault that he was an annoying prat when it came to quidditch. But apparently as she had shared a womb with Oliver, that made her the enemy in Flint's eyes.

As for Higgs, he just had the tendency to be a lech, which Ophelia found far more annoying than Flint's inexplicable hatred of her throughout school. Though it was better now that they were both out and rarely saw each other save for the random run-in.

"Wood," Flint said gruffly, nodding towards her. Higgs looked her up and down with an appreciative smile. Ophelia wished she had grabbed a cardigan before they left the house.

"Alright, you lot. This is Ophelia's night. You want to stay, you behave," Daria said, jumping up to her feet and striding to Flint. She stopped in front of him, her hands planted on her hips. "If it were up to me, you wouldn't even be here. So be grateful I have a soft spot for my younger brother."

"Fine," Flint said, moving to sit in an open chair next to Adrian, though he glanced at Ophelia a few times with an odd look on his face. Ophelia couldn't help but find it strange but pushed it aside. She wasn't about to let one Marcus Flint ruin her night.

"Well that wasn't so bad," Daria said, sitting back down next to Ophelia, who only rolled her eyes and finished her drink. Daria immediately grabbed it and started mixing up another.

"So, one month out in the wilderness. How will you survive?" Maria - one of Ophelia's Hogwarts roommates - asked, her eyes wide. Ophelia shrugged.

"I'm looking forward to it, actually," she said. "It'll be nice to get away from everything for a bit."

"You can't be serious," Roger Davies shouted out. "A month in the wilds of Romania? It'll drive you mad."

Ophelia just smirked as she sipped her drink, though winced slightly.

"Merlin, how much alcohol did ye put in this?" she shouted at Daria over the music. Her friend just laughed.

"You forget, Davies. Wood here grew up in the wilds of the Highlands. And with Oliver and Duncan as brothers," Adrian said. "She'll probably tame every dragon there by the end of the first day."

"Just might," Ophelia said lightly.

The others laughed, though she couldn't help but notice Flint still giving her an odd look. It was as though he had never really seen her before. Whatever, wasn't her concern. After she gulped down about half of her drink and took a shot that Daria had forced upon everyone, she stood, pulling Daria up with her.

"Let's go dance!"

"Yes! This is the Ophelia I wanted to see tonight!" Daria shouted, already starting to dance around as they moved to the stairs. The other girls stood and followed them down to the dance floor.

A nice buzz was going through Ophelia's body as she started moving in time with the music. She wasn't much of a dancer usually, but whenever she drank a certain amount, she would take to the dance floor until someone would have to drag her off. She didn't really care if she looked good or not at this point.

Though she was once again regretting the heels.

"What am I going to do without you!" Daria wailed over the music.

"It's one month," Ophelia shouted back.

"I know… ONE MONTH!" Daria replied. "I'll die!" Ophelia laughed loudly as she rolled her eyes at her best friend. She really was ridiculous, sometimes. But had been Ophelia's best friend since first year and she wouldn't have it any other way.

In all honesty, they were a good mix. Daria got Ophelia to lighten up while Ophelia managed to talk Daria out of some of her more reckless schemes.

"Hopefully there'll be some hot dragon tamers," Lara suggested, her eyes dancing.

"No the point of going there," Ophelia replied dryly.

"You haven't had a boyfriend in forever, though!" Maria shouted. Ophelia rolled her eyes and turned, starting towards the bar, not caring to continue on that train of thought.

"I'm getting water!" she shouted, making sure that no one followed her.

Once she got to the bar, she asked for a bottle of water, putting down the right amount of coins and then took to studying the crowd as she bopped to the music.

Everyone seemed to be having fun, which she supposed was good. And well, Ophelia supposed she was as well, though it wouldn't be her first choice of what to do on a night out. Leaning against the bar, she caught her breath as she watched her friends dance around in a circle.

"There you are."

Ophelia glanced over, noticing Higgs sidle up to her, his arm resting against hers on the bartop. Ophelia frowned and scooted away from him, looking around for the bartender and her water.

"Come on, Wood," Higgs said, caressing her arm. "You know, I've always found you rather fit… for a Hufflepuff, anyway."

"Please, Higgs," she replied, pulling her arm away from him. "I'm no interested."

"You could be if you gave me a chance," Higgs said, straightening up and turning to face her. Ophelia turned to face him, crossing her arms in front of her chest as she narrowed her eyes at him.

She might be a bit tipsy, but it would take all the alcohol in the world and then some to get her to consider Terrance Higgs.

"No, thanks," she said pointedly.

The bartender put the bottle of water down on the counter that she took and spun around, intending to storm off. Unfortunately, she rammed right into a solid chest, causing her nose to smart. She stepped back and looked up, seeing Flint glowering at Higgs as he reached out to keep her from toppling over in her heels.

"Leave her alone, Higgs," he growled. Higgs narrowed his eyes at him.

"I dinnae need yer help," Ophelia said, glaring up at him. Flint glanced down at her and then back over at Higgs, finally letting go of her.

"I got it," Higgs said testily, striding off. Flint watched him go and then moved to sit on a stool in front of the bar. Ophelia looked over at Higgs' retreating form and then at Flint.

"Why did ye do that?" she asked.

"Looked like you could use some help and I know how persistent Higgs can get," he replied. "Especially when he's been drinking."

"But I thought ye hated me," Ophelia said, surprised that he'd help her out in any way or form. Flint stared at her a moment before shaking his head.

"I never hated you - not really. I've been... curious about you, truthfully. But your blasted brother made it difficult to get close to you," he said. "Always knew you were different…"

Ophelia's eyes widened as she stared at him, stunned by his admission. Flint was now looking at the ground, scuffing his toe against the floor as his cheeks colored slightly under the flashing lights. All this time and he didn't hate her? How was that possible? Though the more Ophelia thought about it, the more she realized that he had never actually done or said anything to her directly that was harmful. Sure, there sometimes frowns or glares. But by and far, he saved most of his insults for her brother.

"So, Romania for a month?" he asked, looking up at her. Ophelia shook her head, trying to clear the cobwebs. Perhaps she was far drunker than she thought.

"Ehm. Aye," she said.

"Must be excited," he said.

"Aye, I am," Ophelia said, still too shocked by this interaction to speak in full sentences.

"When you get back… you think perhaps we could get coffee or a pint or something," he said. Ophelia's eyes widened even more. Was Marcus Flint asking her on a date when she got back from Romania?

"Ehm… sure," she replied, not even completely sure why'd she agree.

Oh, Oliver was going to die when he found out. Wait, no. She could not tell her brother about this. Flint nodded shortly.

"Should probably get back to the table," he said, pointing up to the balcony.

"Aye, of course…"

~~~

Ophelia wanted to kill Daria the next morning when she woke up to a splitting headache and dry mouth, her feet aching. Thankfully, she kept a stock of hangover potion in the bathroom, so was feeling better after a few sips. At least well enough to get on with everything she needed to do that day. Though she didn't leave for a few more days yet, Ophelia decided to try and get most of her packing done today.

After showering, Ophelia pulled out a large suitcase from under her bed and then walked over to her closet, pulling it open. She moved over to one side, going straight for her sturdy denims and comfortable flannels. It wouldn't be frigid in Romania - not yet - but she would be spending most of her time outdoors, so would need clothing that would protect her.

Ophelia pulled out some things and then set them on the bed and began to fold them up before setting them in her suitcase.

She couldn't help as her mind returned to last night and Flint's odd request. That they hang out when she got back from Romania. Why would he ask her now of all times? Had he always been interested in her? Perhaps it had more to do with Daria's makeover than it had to do with herself. Yes, that made more sense, she decided.

"Phillie?!" someone shouted. Ophelia sighed, wishing she had never given either of her brothers a key to her flat.

"Back here!" she shouted back.

She heard heavy footsteps come down the hallway and then Oliver was standing in her doorway.

"Late night?" he asked, taking her in. Ophelia looked down at herself and back up at her brother. She didn't think she looked particularly rough. "Saw the kitchen. Ye were drunk cooking again."

Ophelia groaned, not remembering that. Last time she had left out an entire casserole that had only been half baked and it congealed and was near impossible to clean. Oliver chuckled and stepped over, hugging her.

"It's no that bad. I can clean it up for ye while ye pack," he offered.

"Such a gem, Ollie. Tell me again why ye're single?" Ophelia asked, grinning up at her brother.

"Probably because ye and Duncan refuse to stop calling me Ollie," he replied, already turning and walking back out of her room. Ophelia chuckled as she returned her attention to packing.

While most people assumed Oliver had only one thing on his mind - quidditch - Ophelia knew differently. There was a softer side to him that only those close got to see. To everyone else, he was the serious keeper for Puddlemere United. But Ophelia knew how tiring it was for him. Having to constantly put on a cool attitude for the press and fans, going out to this event or that party, when more often than not he wanted to sit at home and read a good book. Or cook. He was actually a fairly good chef. Better than Ophelia at least.

"What did ye get up to last night!?" she shouted out towards the kitchen.

"Oh, ehm, hung out with George, Angelina, Alicia and Kates," he called back. "Perce even came out for a bit with his girl."

"Audrey, aye?" Ophelia called back.

"That's the one," Oliver said. "He thinks he might ask her to marry him soon."

Ophelia nearly dropped the shirt she was folding. Percy Weasley getting married? She never thought she'd see the day. Especially before Oliver. Not that he was any rush to get down the aisle, just he had more luck with ladies.

"Think the whole family is about to get hitched," Oliver said next. "Ron and Hermione have been together since the war. And well, Harry and Ginny have been together awhile as well. And George and Ang."

Ophelia shook her head, not quite understanding the rush. Percy and Audrey were only 24. George, Ron and Ginny even younger. Made no sense to her.

"And here Mum cannae even get one of us down the aisle," she quipped in return.

"Oh, we both ken Duncan cannae stay in a relationship to save his life," Oliver said, walking back into the room. He walked over and started folding clothes, putting each item into the suitcase.

"What's yer excuse?" she asked playfully.

"Quidditch," he said, grinning. Ophelia rolled her eyes. "And spend too much time looking out for ye."

"Dinnae ye dare blame me, Oliver Angus Wood," Ophelia retorted, glaring at him mockingly. He chuckled.

"No like ye're one to talk. How long's it been since ye were with what's his name?" he asked.

"Robert and ye ken well enough his name. Ye did sock him," she said.

"Thought he deserved it. I didnae ken Duncan got his information wrong," Oliver said. Ophelia huffed.

"Next time, promise to stay out of my relationships, will ye?" she asked. "Or at least ask me first?"

"Deal," Oliver said. "Nearly got suspended for that."

Ophelia chuckled as the two continued on in their work silently. They were often like this. Everyone thought it was because they had some cosmic bond as twins, but really it was just because they were so used to being around each other that they didn't need to fill it constantly with talk.

"So, Phillie… promise ye'll be careful while ye're away," Oliver finally said. "I mean… ye can take care of yerself, but these are dragons… People get seriously hurt working with them."

"I'll be perfectly safe, Ollie," she replied. "No need for ye to worry yer pretty head."

"Can ye blame me? Every time I turn around, ye're runnin' off to work with some other dangerous creature," he said.

"Do not," Ophelia shot back.

"Do too," Oliver said.

Ophelia stopped folding and scowling up at him. He met her scowl with one of his own that the two held for all about three seconds before starting to smile and laugh.

"I'll be fine. I'm just there to learn what goes into runnin' a reserve and if it's feasible to reopen Hebrides," she said.

"Aye, but they reopen it and ye'll be first in line to work there," Oliver countered. "And there's no telling what can go wrong when ye're dealing with dragons."

"Charlie Weasley has been doing it for a long time and he's still alive and has all his limbs as far as I'm aware," Ophelia retorted.

Well, she didn't exactly know that, but surely with as close as Oliver was to Percy and George, and Duncan to Charlie, she'd of heard if he lost an arm or a leg.

"True," Oliver said. "And I do feel a bit better knowing he'll be there." Ophelia rolled her eyes again. "I ken, I ken. I havenae owled him or anything. Though Duncan just might."

"Of course, he would," Ophelia grumbled.

"They were best mates in school," Oliver countered. "Still keep in touch and everything."

"I ken, but part of going on this trip is to get a break from ye two," she said. Oliver stopped and gripped his chest.

"Ye've hurt me. Deeply," he wailed facetiously. Ophelia laughed hard.

"Och, get over yerself," she said, shoving him slightly.

"Willnae be the same with ye gone," Oliver said.

"It's a month," Ophelia replied.

"Aye, and I see ye most days usually," he countered. "A month is going to feel like forever."

"Dare say ye can survive a month without yer annoying sister," Ophelia said.

"Annoying? Never," Oliver quipped. Ophelia chuckled again.

"Shut it and keep folding or else I'll never get packed," she ordered.

"Aye, aye," Oliver replied.

"And no cheek," Ophelia said.

"No cheek," Oliver said.

They continued folding for a bit longer before Ophelia put down a shirt in her suitcase and then turned to her brother, launching into a hug.

"I'm going ta miss ye, ye oaf!" she said. Oliver chuckled.

"Gonna miss ye too, ye wee pixie," he replied. "Thank Merlin it's only a month. Who else am I going ta tease?" Ophelia rolled her eyes and returned to packing.

"Perhaps Duncan…"

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