April 21, 2005 6:22 PM
He'd closed up shop early. The impulse to rush over to the Council as soon as Pevensie had informed him that Mac was injured fighting during the hellhound fight was too strong, and it was only Rowan asking a question that reminded Neville that he couldn't just drop everything, although he desperately wanted to. The moment he was able, he sent Rowan home and quickly made his way to the Council.
Once he got there, he realized his problem. He'd never actually been anywhere but the greenroom and the main sitting room off of the foyer.
"What's wrong, Mr. Longbottom?" Daisy asked. "You look a bit flushed. Might I assist you?"
Neville was about to ask where Mac's room was, but he wasn't sure if that was entirely appropriate and the last thing he wanted was Mr. Giles' wrath raining down on him. "Could you let Mac know I'd like to see her, please?"
"Oh I will," one of the younger slayers shouted, raising her hand.
She turned and barreled up the stairs. Daisy raised a brow at that then shook her head. It was not long after that Mac came hurrying down with a huge smile on her face. She did not say anything, but grabbed Neville's hand before pulling him towards one of the lesser-used rooms on the ground floor. She kicked it closed and pushed him up against it before kissing him soundly.
He had not expected a happy and energetic Mac to come after him and practically molest him. It took Neville a few moments to remember he was here to make sure she wasn't seriously injured.
Neville pulled back and looked her over. Her arm had stitches. "Merlin, she wasn't kidding."
"Wha'? Who wasna kiddin'?" Mac asked as she pulled him towards the sofa that was in the little parlor room.
"Pevensie. She told me you'd been injured and that your arm was badly hurt. What happened?" he asked as they sat down. He was careful as he handled her arm.
Mac grinned with excitement. "I go' to kill no' one, but two hellhounds. Two. I go' knocked to m'arse, so I gave it m'arm to gnaw on whilst I stabbed it wit' m'stake. Kasie killed herself an old vampire. She got bit a little though. I dinna like tha'."
"You're the only person I can think of who would voluntarily give up your arm for a hellhound to bite so you could reach for a weapon. Why didn't you hex or curse them?"
"It were happening very fast. I did petrify one of them, but supernatural beasties fight through magic quicker than humans. Ya look worried. Dinna worry, Nev. I'm all right."
She smoothed some of his hair back with the hand on her uninjured arm.
"Does your brother know this happened?" he asked skeptically.
"No. This is m'job, Neville. My calling. It wasna as if I were alone. Kasie were right by my side. We're a team. I dinna tell Brody because I dinna want him to worry. Ya know how he worries, and my bein' who I am now doesna change tha'."
Neville nodded. "And I know that. But since you all but forced me to ask you to be in a relationship with me," he joked with a grin, "I would think I at least ranked an owl letting me know what happened instead of hearing it from my employee who mentioned it off-handedly, yeah?"
"Fine, but I wasna hurt tha' bad. I walked away even. Sure, I had to take m'shirt off to wrap around m'arm to help the bleedin', but I walked away. I'll owl ya next time. I swear it, aye? I'm no' used to havin' to report to anyone. I havena done so since Hogwarts. I might need some trainin' there."
He leaned over to kiss her and then leaned against the back of the couch, Mac burrowing into his side. "So tell me all about it. I want a blow by blow description of how you managed to kill two hellhounds."
"Well, I been workin' wit' a sword. I stabbed one in the neck wit' a stake then chopped its head off. I'd froze one to get us in. Dinna know there were two. The second one, the froze one, he got unfroze and lunged at Kasie. I stabbed his heart then cut his head off too. It were a bit gross."
Neville chuckled. "We truly are a match. I cut off the head of snakes and you cut off the head of hellhounds. We could start a business."
Mac laughed. "Buffy could be helpful there. She's chopped the heads off lots of thin's."
"Or we could specialize. Who knows how many evil snakes and hellhounds there are in the world. Although I'm not sure I approve of your method."
Mac gave his chest a pat as she snuggled more closely against him.
"So wha' have ya been up to?"
He gave her a look. "What am I always up to? Work and sleeping. I've added a dabble of worrying about you in there. Things are running fine at the shop, I'm in fine health, and that's really all there is to it. My Gran wants to drag me away for tea sometime, but I'll duck that when I get to it."
"Ya need to get out more. Mayhap we should have a real date. Do somethin' fun."
"I don't know. Your idea of fun sounds a bit too life-threatening for my tastes. I swore off fighting evil when I finished school."
Mac sat up and looked at him. "Are ya sayin' ya dinna want to be seen in public wit' me? Ya afraid I'll embarrass ya? My Nana raised a lady even though I dinna act one."
Neville rolled his eyes. "I was talking about your excitement over killing hellhounds and your friend killing a vampire. I would never be embarrassed with you."
Mac smiled and ducked her head in a very girlish way. "The quiet and calm tha' comes wit' bein' near ya is more than enough for me. Ya dinna even have to take me out. I liked just stayin' at yer place tha' night."
He felt bad because he should be able to take her someplace nice and entertain her. "All I did was fall asleep. I don't know how you have so much energy. Maybe we can take a shopping trip in Diagon or London proper. What would you like to do?"
"And no' to be creepy, but I watched ya sleep. I have energy because I'm a slayer. Dinna feel so bad 'bout it. Iffen ya need to go shoppin', aye, I'll go wit' ya."
"I don't need to go shopping. It's just something to do. Lots of couples shop on Diagon. I never got the appeal personally."
"Me neither," she replied, grinning. "I get wha' I need and get out. I'm good at eatin'. I like tha', but ya might never wan' to eat wit' me again after. I like live music and dancin'. I recall ya bein' a bit of a dancer at the Yule Ball. Ginny Weasley were a lucky lass."
That made Neville laugh. "Oh Merlin, I was fourteen and trying so hard not to step on her toes. I practiced for who knows how many hours to get that good. I doubt I remember any step."
"We can work on tha'," Mac said. "I recall ya lookin' nice though. We dinna have to do tha'. We can go to one of those muggle movin' picture shows or somethin'."
Neville wouldn't have known what to even look for as far as selection. He'd been to a few over the years, but never had picked out the show at the cinema. His luck, they'd see either something with sex or for children. "Perhaps. I get orders from other suppliers and apothecaries from other countries. I could take an order in person and we could make a holiday of it."
"Oooo, tha's sounds especially fun."
Mac really liked the idea of taking a holiday with him. Even more so if they could stay in a little hut or something together. If there could be naked swimming, or naked anything, and that would be very nice too.
"Well, I'll see when my next supply is due to ship out and make arrangements. The idea of nice holiday sounds good to me."
Mac actually giggled and kissed him.