Disclaimer: Joss for the Whedonverse, J.K. for the Rowlingverse.
Or something like that.
Feedback: Always appreciated.
Note: Last bit of Willow's POV for this chapter.
We’ve completely overshot our time, but none of us care. We’re too busy laughing. This is the connection I’ve been missing. The warmth, the easy conversation, the lack of boxed secrets hanging about everyone’s heads, knocking around and cluttering the air.
We should talk to strangers more often.
She’s fresh out of England, on break, visiting a cousin. Clearly intelligent, with an odd taste in literature. She buries herself in old mythic lore and legendry. So, really, not that odd at all. She attends a boarding school that looks like a castle, and her best friends are like world saviors to her. Her parents are dentists. She has a big ginger cat that she sometimes thinks is smarter than her.
“So how’d you come up with ‘Crookshanks?’” Tara asks.
“We’re trying to name our own kitty,” Willow adds, “We just kind of call her Miss Kitty.”
Hermione laughs. “I think Crookshanks would kill me if I ever called him, well, Mr. Kitty. Crookshanks fits him though. His legs are a bit bent, and it means his nickname can be ‘Cranky,’ which is perfect, according to Ron.”
Tara nudges Willow. “Is anyone else getting the vision that fifty years from now, we’ll still be sitting around a tea shop with our little old lady friends and talking about our kittens?”
Willow sneaks her hand back into Tara’s, and smiling, murmurs, “How many kitties are we talkin’, here?”
“Oh, a hundred?”
Hermione smirks. “That’s it? You’re going to lose in the little old lady Cat-Owning League, you know.”
“Oh, but Tara didn’t mention the bushels. We’re also going to have bushels of kitties.”
Tara grins. “I think we’re getting into murky legal territory, honey. They might have rules against owning personal zoos.”
Willow waves a hand. “Oh, pshaw. The President owes us. Anyway, that would be....discrimination.”
Hermione and Tara look at Willow.
Willow frowns back.
Hermione raises an eyebrow. “How would the President owe you, anyhow?”
Willow and Tara look at each other. “Because the President’s a...bigot?”
“And steals things!”
“And steals things.”
“Wait, he steals things?”
Hermione snorts, then glances up at the far wall, suddenly alarmed. “It’s four o’clock already! I was supposed to meet up with Andy ten minutes ago at the college campus.”
“We can take you there,” Tara offers, “we’re actually heading back now to meet up with some people too.”
Hermione smiles. “That’d be great! I might even see you guys around, when Andy gives me the grand tour.”
Willow grabs a few of the books, and the three make their way back to the UCSD campus, moving their conversation on to the intricacies of kitty ownership.
Tara’s eyes assess Hermione as they walk, occasionally drifting to the large texts balanced on Willow’s arms.I wonder if Hermione knows she has the aura of a powerful witch.
If not, is it worth the risk to tell her?