FOUR. YOU ARE NOT BROKEN.

“Aren’t you supposed to be grounded?”

Dahlia’s hand halted in mid-air, half an inch away from the packet of Sunbites in Alice’s hand. She twisted around to see her dad a couple of steps above her on the stairs, hands in his pockets and eyebrows raised, unimpressed. He wasn’t angry though which was always a plus. Dad didn’t get angry very often, but when he did, it wasn’t pretty.

“I’m at home, aren’t I?” she replied. Her tone wasn’t entirely friendly because she wasn’t feeling particularly friendly towards her dad at the moment, but he ignored it.

“It’s sort of implied that you can’t bring friends over when you’re grounded,” he said.

She shrugged. “How was I supposed to know that? I’ve been living in a magical castle in Scotland for the past seven years.”

He sighed. “You’re driving me to an early grave, phool.” She ignored the endearment. Knowing that there was no use in trying to sweeten her before she was prepared to be, he turned to Alice and offered her a small, rueful smile instead. “Hello, Alice.”

“Hi, Mr Darzi,” she said tentatively. “Sorry for popping over. I just thought Dahlia could use a shoulder.”

“It’s alright, dear, you can stay. I was only joking.”

He reached down to pat her hair, thought better of it and quietly asked to pass instead. Alice shuffled over to press into Dahlia’s side, opening up a small gap for him to take, and he edged past, bounding down the stairs until he entered the living room. Dahlia heard him greet her mum with a soft exclamation, saw him pull her into a small hug and then wheedle the remote off Danyal.

“He doesn’t seem that angry anymore,” Alice noted.

She scoffed. “That’s because he knows I’m in the right. The only reason I’m even grounded is because I have to respect my elders and treat Auntie Supriya like everything she says should be stuck in the Bible or something just because she’s his sister.”

“Well. You probably shouldn’t have told him you respect the dead moth in your bathroom more than her if that’s the case.”

“Probably not,” she agreed. “Doesn’t mean I fucking regret it, though.”

“Good. From what you said, the woman’s full of crap. And you know I don’t like to judge people before I’ve met them – “

“Admirable. Really.”

“ – but she’s someone I have to make an exception for. I don’t understand where on earth she gets off deciding what you’re going to do with your life. All this gung ho about marriage is just bullshit.”

“You can say that again,” Dahlia said. She sighed and picked out a handful of crisps from Alice’s packet. “She makes out like I’m such a fucking freak for not wanting to get married. What’s so wrong about that? I don’t want to get married. I can’t ever picture myself wanting to. But apparently at nineteen, it needs to be the first thing on my mind.”

“Like I said,” Alice replied, tilting her head to rest it on her shoulder, “it’s all bullshit.”

And the thing was that it was all bullshit. Dahlia knew that as sure as she knew her own name. Auntie Supriya’s view on the world was exceedingly narrow-minded – she expected everything to work the way she commanded it to and so help anyone who tried to buck the trend. No one was allowed to fail to deliver her expectations, no matter how archaic they were.

But there was something else that cast a shadow of doubt in Dahlia’s mind. She didn’t particularly enjoy the feeling, for she was a woman who was always secure in what she believed in or said or did – stubborn, some might say, though she didn’t really care either way – and self-doubt wasn’t a concept she dealt with well. She had felt it, of course, like any other person in the world. Like any other Muggleborn in the world. But she hated it.

She hated not knowing whether this was normal. Though she knew that there were many people out there who didn’t believe in the constitution of marriage, she didn’t know if this was for the same reasons as her. The reason was, quite plainly, this: Dahlia was not attracted to anyone.

Not in the sense that she had never had a crush (though she hadn’t). Not in the sense that she didn’t find anyone good-looking (because it was a matter of objectivity, wasn’t it, the ability to look at someone and ascertain that yes, their features were expressive in a way that would look breathtaking on canvas, the hollow at the base of their throat forever immortalised in watercolour – that, yes, they were beautiful?). Not in the sense that she thought boys were icky (they could be fucking tramps sometimes – though, truth be told, so could she).

But she had never felt the urge to kiss someone or hold their hand or slide off their clothes and wrap herself around them for a night.

Whenever her friends had giggled about Cass’ exploits or Nala’s snogs or the progression of Nova’s relationship with Al, Dahlia had never sat there and longed for the same. She had never wanted to feel someone’s hands on her, never felt an ache deep in her body awaken at the details she had never asked to know. In truth, the thought made her feel pretty damn nauseated.

“What are you thinking about?” Alice asked softly.

“I’m not attracted to anyone.” The words leapt out of her mouth before she could stop them.

Alice snorted. “Not even me?” she teased. When all Dahlia did was roll her eyes, she straightened and faced her. “You’re being serious, right? Because I’m sure you’ve mentioned it before.”

“Probably.” She shrugged. “But yeah. That’s what I’m thinking about. The fact that I don’t ever want to shag someone because the thought knocks me the littlest bit sick.”

Alice laughed. “Lovely.”

“Do you think it’s weird?” Instinctively, Dahlia posed the question as a demand, rather than an actual plea. It was natural for her to be on the offence, masking the hesitance and uncertainty with a quirk of her eyebrows and the straightening of her jaw. “The fact that you do and I don’t?”

“Of course, not. I’m sure loads of people feel the same.”

“You are?”

“Of course. I mean, if there’s people out there who feel attracted to anyone regardless of their gender or lack of one, there must be people who are the opposite.”

Dahlia scowled. “If there are, I haven’t met any. In Hogwarts, it felt like everyone was obsessed with hooking up in a bush or wherever the fuck they did it.”

“Maybe they were hiding it,” she suggested. “Because everyone else was hooking up in a bush or wherever the fuck they did it.”

“Maybe,” Dahlia agreed.

“Do you want to try and research it, maybe?” Alice said. She chucked another crisp into her mouth. “Check out a bookstore and see if there are books on it? I’m sure there’ll be books on it, there are books on everything nowadays.”

She shrugged like it was no big deal. “I have nothing better to do. Although I’m still grounded, remember? I can’t go near a bookstore unless it magically appears in my kitchen.” Her friend groaned in disappointment. She hummed contemplatively. “Actually, I think I know a way we can.”

Being a witch had its perks. She could conjure up a basket of flowers in a moment’s notice, move from one end of the country to the other with the wave of a wand, warm her hands in winter and grow back a bone overnight. The benefits of her magic were endless – but it did have some drawbacks too. For one, it still wasn’t very compatible with electricity. She had to minimise her use of it at home since, well, the entire house ran on electricity and sometimes, liberal use of it meant that the lights could suddenly turn off when Dad was in the middle of marking homework.

Another drawback of it was that she got too used to thinking like a witch. It was understandable, of course, because she was a witch – but for eleven years of her life, she had thought otherwise and in those eleven years, she had grown up in the age of technology. An age where television and video games and the internet was at her fingertips.

“IS. IT. NORMAL – “ Alice said loudly, enunciating each word as she clumsily typed it. Her index finger jabbed down on the keys of the family laptop forcefully, forehead knotted in concentration. Dahlia rolled her eyes next to her, wishing she hadn’t been so kind as to let her best friend have at it. “TO. NOT. FEEL – hey, what are these words here? Why have they suddenly appeared?”

Dahlia rolled over and looked. “Oh, that’s the suggestion box. It writes what you might be looking for so you can just click it instead of typing it all out.”

“But… why is this talking about pregnancy? Is it normal to not feel pregnant at 12 weeks old? This isn’t what I’m looking for!”

“So then carry on typing.”

“Good point,” she conceded. And then: “ATTRACTED – where is the bloody e button again? Oh, wait! It’s here. Is it normal to not feel attracted to anyone? How do you click on it?”

Dahlia clicked.

Google assembled a list of links within seconds and fed it to the laptop screen. Alice made a tiny exclamation of surprise, blue eyes round with wonder. Ordinarily, the sight would’ve enticed a smile out of Dahlia but her thoughts were on more important things. Barely aware of what she was doing, she clicked on the first link, her breath caught in her throat. All thoughts of appearing as nonchalant as always flew out of her head.

You are not broken.

The first words her mind registered.

You are not broken.

The website appeared to be a forum of some sort where someone submitted a question and it was answered by others in the community. Perhaps that was exactly what she needed because many of the answers were from people who felt just the same, reaching out to assure this asker that they were normal, that this lack of attraction to anyone at all was not a fatal flaw. Some answers were passionate, others simple, as if there were no doubts to it: she was not a faulty cog in a machine. She was not broken.

“Asexual,” Dahlia said, clearing her throat of the lump that had risen to it. She glanced at Alice and tapped the screen at where the word first appeared. Her voice was calm because it had to be. “That’s what it says here.”

The look she received was nothing short of perceptive. Alice, ever the observant best friend, was fully aware of what she was going through.

“It must be nice,” she said warmly, “to be able to put a name to it.”

“I guess.” She shrugged.

It was nice.

More than nice.

It was the feeling she had been empowered with when Neville Longbottom had managed to convince her that she was a witch. The feeling of slowly opening up her Hogwarts letter, a slight tremor in her right hand, to see Miss Darzi neatly printed in green, shimmering ink. The weight of a leather hat on her head, its croon in her mind, the shout of “HUFFLEPUFF!” that had erupted the Great Hall nearly seven and a half years ago.

The feeling of belonging somewhere.

Asexual.

She felt like tattooing it across her face.

“Anyway,” she said, shaking the thought free from her head. She snapped the laptop shut and raised an eyebrow at the girl beside her. “Didn’t you come over here for a reason?”

Alice gave her a quizzical look. “What?”

“The MagiVision?”

“Oh, yeah!” Alice clapped a hand to her forehead. “Forgot about that.” She dived to the far end of the bed, all long legs and a fitted red robe, her hand closing around her bag. “I can’t believe I’m doing this, you know.”

“What, being a good friend for once?”

Alice gasped. “What? I’m a good friend! I’ve always been a good friend!”

“That’s what you think,” Dahlia said with a teasing grin. “The rest of us know that you’re the slyest bitch in the group.”

“Take that back!”

“I’m sorry, I can’t, my mother taught me that lying was a sin. Do you want me to sin, Alice? Because that’s what you’re asking for right now. You’re literally asking me to toss myself into the fires of hell to give yourself an ego boost. How fucking vain is that?”

Her right eye twitched murderously. “So help me, Darzi, I will destroy – “

There was a quick succession of knocks on the door and then it flew open. The girls both turned to see Danyal in the doorway, a thin smile on his lips and hands in the pocket of his jeans. “I need the laptop,” he said, rather bluntly if one was being honest.

“Do you now?” Dahlia replied flatly because it turned out that her mother had taught her to be honest and she had noticed that very bluntness. She was in no mood to humour it.

“I just said that, didn’t I?” Danyal said. He blinked at her, as if waiting for her to get up and place it in his hands. “Can I have it?”

“Why do you want it?” she asked instead.

“Because I have an essay to write for R.S.”

“Since when do you do your homework?”

“Since when do you care what I do?” he shot back. He scowled. “Can I just have the damn laptop? I’m grounded too so I might as well do it with all this spare time I now have.”

Dahlia rolled her eyes. “Take it,” she said, waving a hand towards the desired object. It lay innocently on her bed until he stalked over and grabbed it. “Don’t break it.”

“I know how to use a laptop,” he said scathingly.

She sent him her most infuriating look, the one she had perfected in fourth year after spending at least an hour in front of the mirror. It had come about after Nala had finally started dating this guy she had mooned over for months, one Maksimilian Volkov, who Dahlia had found much too cocky for her approval. The rest of the girls hadn’t been fond of him either, though Alice and Cassidy had dealt with their distaste for Nala’s sake and the others had simply retreated into their quietest selves around him. Neither had been Dahlia’s style – she had settled for irritating the bloke instead.

Cue: The Look.

It worked on everyone and Danyal was no exception. “Don’t look at me like that,” he snapped.

“Like what?” she asked innocently.

He glared.

Alice sighed. “Don’t give him The Look, Dahlia. You know how much it annoys people.”

“What look?” she said. She didn’t even bother to hide her grin.

Alice ignored her. “Sorry about that,” she said to Danyal. “We tried to train her, but she bit the instructor’s leg in our first lesson.”

Though he might have been annoyed at his sister, Danyal was generally rather polite with everyone else. He relaxed a little and cracked a small smile in acknowledgement of Alice’s apology. “What’s that?” he asked, indicating the small black object in her hand.

She glanced down. “Oh, it’s just a MagiVision. Well, an illegal one anyway.”

“An illegal what?”

“MagiVision,” she repeated. “Sort of like the Muggle television but it runs on magic and only offers magical channels. You set it up and it can project onto any surface but it works best on a solid wall.”

“And it’s illegal?”

“This one is,” she said, flushing pink with guilt. “It’s not licensed.”

“The licensed ones are too expensive,” Dahlia interjected dismissively. “I’d have to sell my left kidney in Knockturn Alley for it. This one is from Yves Lewis. He might be a wanker but he always managed to get things from and into places no one else could.”

Danyal eyed it. “Oh. Right.”

“We’re going to set it up and watch something before I have work,” she said. She paused. “If you want, you can watch with us.”

He glanced down at the laptop in his hands, then at the MagiVision and then back again. There was a real hesitation in him, the obvious tug of desire to let go of his irritation and to sit back, relax and join them – but then his shoulders stiffened again and he shook his head.

“I have an essay to do,” he said.

The door clicked shut behind him.






“I’m just scared. This guy does so well at work, always reaches the group target and finishes his paperwork, organises it, like, meticulously. It’s as if everything falls into his lap, almost. He’s clearly going to get the promotion but I just – I want it so badly, you know?”

Sometimes, Dahlia liked work.

She liked putting on her black shirt, black trousers and black apron, a little gold badge declaring her name pinned to her breast pocket. She liked seeing the Harpy logo in the mirror just before she set off, liked standing behind the counter and waiting for customers, liked creating desserts and drinks with an expert twirl of her wand. Sometimes, cleaning up wasn’t even that bad at all.



Nah, it was always fucking awful.

But the point was that sometimes Dahlia enjoyed her job. Today was one of those days. Because weirdly enough, sometimes she liked hearing about other people’s lives and giving them advice. It was something she had never thought possible, a fact that she was sure would cause her friends to report her to the Aurors under the possibility of that she was being impersonated using Polyjuice Potion – because she was, after all, Dahlia Darzi, the girl who had regularly told her friends she didn’t give a shit about anything they had to say to her.

(A joke, of course. She was blunt and they loved it because they loved her. Whenever she said such things, they just laughed and called her something unprintable, for that was the way their friendship worked.)

“What do you think?” the customer sighed.

She was folded on the stool James Potter had been collapsed in the week before, the arch of her neck defeated, shoulders slumped under her smart work robes. She moodily stirred a mug of hot chocolate.

Dahlia handed a Molldog – a popular hot drink, its title hated by its namesake, that made all freezing ears steam up, (now including a dash of alcohol!) – to another customer and accepted his gold with a thank you. When it came, her smile did not make him choke on the drink since it was genuine. Meaning she didn’t look like Freddy Krueger for once.

“I think,” Dahlia said after the other customer had slipped away, “that the only thing you can do is work as hard as you can. The promotion will go to whoever the manager feels deserves it. So your best bet is to just work for it. Try your best. Hope they notice how much you’ve really pulled it together.”

She sniffed. “But what if they don’t promote me?”

“Then you cry about it for a night and then go back to your job and work just as hard. Harder, if you can – but make sure you don’t wear yourself out. You don’t want to collapse from all the stress and you need to make sure you still have a life outside of it. But honestly, you just need to think about the long-term with these things. Even if you don’t get this one, another promotion will be available soon enough and that’s the one you can properly go for.”

The customer looked up from her hot chocolate. “You’re right. There’s always going to be another promotion. This isn’t the end of the world.”

“Of course, I’m right,” Dahlia said. “I’m always bloody well right.”

She laughed. “I’m sure you are. You must hear these things quite a lot. Or is that bartenders?”

“God knows. I do hear my fair bit though. Something about wearing an apron makes everyone trust me.”

She cracked a smile. “You weren’t a Hufflepuff at Hogwarts were you, by any chance?”

“I was,” Dahlia said proudly.

“Figures,” she said. “You Puffs always were an understanding lot.”

Understanding. Ha! She was sure that wasn’t a word anyone would apply to her if they hung around with her outside of work. The very thought cracked her up.

The rest of her shift passed without incident. There wasn’t so much of a whisper of The K – she had decided to hate him eternally after one too many arrogant boasts about his expertise at everything under the sun – and everyone else was just lovely. A young mum with two toddlers arrived towards the end of the shift, the little girls honestly stealing Dahlia’s heart within seconds and she couldn’t help but give them a discount for all their charm. An old lady with silver hair and a lifetime of stories spent at least twenty minutes recounting some of them, sending the entire staff into riots of laughter. Her coworkers chatted about their lives and she told them about her Auntie Supriya and before she knew it, it was time to clock off.

“Teddy?” she said, popping her head into the kitchen. The boss was slicing up a fish at lightning speed, the knife a blur on the chopping board. He looked up distractedly, hair morphing into lime green. “My shift’s over, I’m heading off.”

“Yeah. Uh. Yeah. Sure thing. Have fun.”

“Will do,” she said, stifling a laugh.

She pushed the door open further, winding her way through the bustling kitchen to the cloakroom. The Harpy didn’t boast a massive team in the winter, its busiest time being the summer months when the café was jam-packed with Hogwarts students and tourists, but it was large enough. Dahlia edged around them all until she slipped into the small room where she had hung her coat. She had just put her arms in them when she saw something shift in the corner of her eye and spun around, her hand flying for her wand.

“Calm down, it’s only me.”

“Jesus Christ, Louis! You nearly gave me a heart attack!” she screeched.

Louis smirked. “Still taking the Lord’s name in vain, I see, Dahlia.”

“Sorry,” she said automatically, even though she really wasn’t. Nevertheless, he was still her boss, no matter what little regard he and Teddy held for the formalities of their role. They had nearly laughed in her face the first time she had reluctantly called them “sir”. “But you did scare me.”

“Oops,” he said.

“Oops,” she parroted. She eyed his hair. “Orange? Really?”

“I’m tapping into my inner Weasley,” he replied.

His inner Weasley was disgusting.

Dahlia told him as such.

“You’re too sweet,” he cooed. “You know what else is sweet? Teddy’s new cigs.” He rattled the packet in his hands at her, a gaudy gold rectangle of cancer sticks that seemed right up the metamorphmagus’ alley, spiky black lettering scrawled across it. “I’m about to take a break and smoke some. Wanna join?”

She grimaced. “Do I want to smoke something that is scientifically proven to slowly kill my body? No, thanks.”

“Charming.”

“I try.”

Honestly speaking, she had never felt the urge to smoke and didn’t think she ever would. Her friends had occasionally done it at the various Quidditch after parties at Hogwarts. She, on the other hand, had been more than happy to stick with her Butterbeer and the natural high of cramming so many students into such a tight space, music sweetening the poison that usually lingered in her bite. Besides, she didn’t think that ‘borrowing’ her boss’ cigs would be recommended by anyone, even if it was by her other boss’ encouragement.

She buttoned up her coat, knotted her scarf around her neck and shoved her gloves on with a farewell. Less than two minutes later, she was swinging out of The Harpy’s Lounge and into the winter wonderland of London’s magical scene.

Since she had been paid the previous weekend and was already out, Dahlia figured that it couldn’t hurt to buy the book she had been reading in Flourish and Blott’s so instead of apparating home on the spot, she turned in the direction of Diagon Alley. The area had expanded quite a bit over the past two decades in an effort to revitalise the wizarding world following the Second War and included a number of winding streets coiled up out of the sight of the Muggles. Some were swankier streets that reeked of money, others trendy destinations for teenagers desperate to claim an area all for their own – The Harpy’s Lounge sat on one such lane just off Diagon Alley.

Dahlia entered Flourish and Blott’s within minutes. In a stark contrast to the other night, the bookshop was now brimming with customers – bespectacled wizards flicking through the comic book section, worn-looking mothers casually inspecting the latest releases aisle – so she didn’t waste any time in breathing in the atmosphere.

“There you are,” she muttered victoriously as she snatched up the very book she had picked up last time. It was even folded in the same place as before. Smiling to herself, she turned towards the counter –

And promptly crashed into someone.

“Fuck!” she hissed, the back of her hand flying to her nose. She pulled it away to see if there was any blood – thankfully, there wasn’t. “Watch where you’re going, will you?”

“Sorry,” the other person replied.

She stilled.

Not again.

“Seriously?” Dahlia snapped, tilting her head up to see James Potter smiling embarrassedly at her. The smile faded. “Are you stalking me or something?”

His eyebrows furrowed together. “If I wanted to stalk you, wouldn’t I just hang around the Harpy until it was your shift?”

“I didn’t say you were smart about it,” she retorted.

He blinked. “Well, I’m not,” he said, “so you can simmer down now.”

“Don’t tell me what to do.”

“What the – that doesn’t even – why do you hate me so much? I’ve not done anything to you – “

“You cried about your ex-girlfriend to me and then asked me to shag you,” she said flatly.

He winced. “Well. There was that. But I tried to apologise!” he protested. “You just apparated away!”

Dahlia shrugged lazily, knowing it would likely annoy him. “And what?” She adjusted her scarf around her neck in the very picture of nonchalance and raised a single eyebrow as slow as she could.

“Well, then, the only reason this is being dragged out is because of you,” he replied. “I’ve showed that I’m willing to work it out and I’ve tried to reach out to you – it’s you who refuses to swallow her pride and hear me out.”

Her first instinct was to scowl and tell him to piss off, mostly because she knew he had hit the nail right on its head; her second was to smile and inform him that he had done so. She settled for the second.

Understandably, James was not impressed.

“Merlin, you’re going to be the death of me,” he muttered murderously under his breath. Then, he straightened up and sent her a smile – it was equal parts strained and sardonic. “Hi, Darzi. Glad to have caught you! I would just like to apologise for my behaviour the other night. It wasn’t appropriate and I’m sorry for not thinking before I spoke. Please accept my sincere regrets.” He held out his hand.

She eyed it like it was a bug.

“You shake it,” he said helpfully.

“My right hand is occupied.”

“Move the book to the other hand,” he advised. He glanced down at the cover and his face abruptly brightened. “Hey, is that the latest in the Mayfair Mysteries series?”

She blinked. “Er… Yeah?”

“I love that series!” he exclaimed. Previous irritation wiped away, he stepped closer in his enthusiasm. “I heard this one’s the best of the lot, is that true? Personally, my favourite was ‘The Glastonbury Ghost’ – absolutely amazing twist at the end. Honestly did not see it coming.”

Several thoughts ran through Dahlia’s head at that moment, making her brain grind to a complete stop. It spanned everything from what the fuck is going on to obviously, Lapis and Lamias was better to Jesus Christ, his aftershave is actually annoyingly nice to –

“You can read?” she blurted.

“Er…” James paused, eyebrows lifted quizzically. “Yes? Why wouldn’t I?”

“I mean – “ For some reason, her mind was still in a thousand places at once. She couldn’t believe that a guy like James fucking Potter had picked up something like the Mayfair Mysteries, a series of books set in the 1800s about two lesbians solving magical crimes due to the incompetency of the Ministry. “You’re a Gryffindor.”

“So?”

“I didn’t know Gryffindors could read,” she spluttered.

James poked his tongue against the inside of his left cheek. He inspected her as if to determine whether she was being serious, a smile quirking the edges of his lips. “Well, you’re the least welcoming Hufflepuff I’ve ever seen so I guess we both just defy the stereotypes, don’t we?”

“Seriously,” Dahlia said, unable to stop the words from pouring out of her mouth. “Since when do you read? You’re a – well, you were the Gryffindor poster boy. You know, Captain of the Quidditch team, shagging your way through half the school, always had a blonde at your side – how the fuck do books fit into that?”

“Girls like intelligent guys,” he replied easily.

She stared at him. “You’re fucking kidding me, right?”

James laughed. It was a nice laugh, rich and loud and not as obnoxious as she had expected. It lit him up like a Christmas tree. “I’m kidding,” he assured her. “You know that playing Quidditch doesn’t mean you can’t read? I mean, I’ve always read books – kinda impossible not to when you have Aunt Hermione living next door.”

“But – you’re reading the Mayfair Mysteries,” Dahlia said. “Guys don’t read that.”

“Clearly, this one does.”

She stared at him again. She was fully aware of how stupid she looked doing it, but she didn’t really care. Somehow, James Potter had thrown her off-guard. Over a book. Bloody hell.

“I need to get home,” she said finally. “I forgot that I’m grounded.”

James laughed again, the sound much softer this time. She slid past him, holding her book to her chest, her thoughts finally settling like the snow outside. She had just made it to the mouth of the aisle when she heard him shout behind her.

“Hey! Hey, Darzi! Do you think you can forgive me now?”

She stopped, shaking her head in disbelief. “Fine,” she called, rolling her eyes. “Whatever.”

It wasn’t like she’d ever see him again.




DISCLAIMER: The website mentioned at the start of this chapter is 7cups. I literally typed in the same question that Alice did and it's one of the first links.

AUTHOR'S NOTE: Apparently, there's a word called subtlety that exists. I'm not sure whether it actually does bc why try to lowkey slide in a concept when I can be the writing equivalent of a brick to the face? (Or the person throwing said brick. Whatever.)

This chapter is probs actually rubbish because it is currently 03:17 as I am writing this and my muse has been gone for... three months? Maybe longer. Uni sucks the creativity from me apparently. Also, I have recently been binging stuff about BTS and I can only have one obsession at a time lmao #petitionforplumstomarryminyoongi

ALSO for my peace of mind, just pls accept that Mrs Darzi speaks mostly in Hindi bc your girl is struggling to piece her sentences together in broken English idek anymore

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