Where: out shopping
When: buggered if I know
I'm going to go and replenish my school supplies next Monday and I was wondering if you would like to accompany me? Your company would be most appreciated and I'd especially like your advice on potion ingredients and textbooks for our lessons.
Please write back if you would like to come.
At first, Severus was more then a little flattered to receive an invitation from Regulus to keep him company while shopping. He then reasoned that it must be only because he could tell the younger man what to buy when it came to their upcoming tutoring session. So his response was short and to the point, as always.
I would be happy to keep you company.
When Regulus recieved Severus' reply he grinned and made a list of supplies he needed, putting "robes" at the top of the list.
Monday came and Severus was early, waiting for Regulus in the designated spot. His Slytheirn scarf was wrapped around his neck and down his chest under a large black, wool coat. His hands were in his pockets, and he rocked on his heels in place, looking around every now and again – allowing some hope that Regulus wouldn’t stand him up
Regulus, a Slytherin scarf also tied around his neck and wearing long black robes, strode through the crowd confidently towards the place where he had said he would meet Severus. He was a few minutes, late, but he knew his friend would wait for him.
The ground was hard and cold, though a little muddy from the rain from the night before – when Severus looked up from the ground, he began to think the exact opposite – he thought of something soft, warm, clean – then just as quickly, wiped his mind of it, "Hiya"
"Hey." Regulus grinned as he strode up to Severus; he knew he would have been waiting for him. Then, quickly taking in his friend's appearance - his battered scarf, slightly shabby coat - he glanced in the direction of the shops. "Want to get going then?"
"Yeah, what shops are we hitting then?" the two young men walked along together, Severus sticking to Reguluis’s pace
Regulus pulled the list he had made earlier out of his pocket and glanced at it casually. "I could do with new robes," he said, taking in Severus' look from the corner of his eye. "What do you say we go to Madam Malkin's first?"
"Alright." Severus wouldn’t disagree with Regulus, even though to him, his robes looked just fine. They walked up the road, and Severus opened the door for Regulus to enter in first
"Thanks." Regulus smiled at Severus as they entered the shop, hoping that he hadn't noticed that his robes were in no need of replacement.
"Hello my dearies!" came the attendant from behind the counter, "what can I do you for today, hmm?"
Regulus, unconsciously, put on the kind but slightly haughty voice he always used to deal with people who weren't in his immediate circle of friends. "Hello, I was wondering if I could purchase a new set of school robes?"
"Yes yes of course … school robes, not dress robes? Which … ah, Slytherin I see … go on and take off your jacket, let me measure you."
"Yes please." Regulus casually tossed off his jacket and left it on a nearby chair, sneaking a glance at Severus' face as he did so.
Severus licked at his chapped lips slowly, making them moist as he watched Regulus, then offered a small, discreet smile to the young man.
"And you young sir?" the woman said, taking out her tape measure, looking to the taller Slytherin, "any robes for you?"
"No, thank you ma’am" he said quietly
Regulus smiled back at him, very glad that he had someone of his age to accompany him. Then he took a deep breath, steadying himself for what he was about to say. "Why don't you get a some fitted, Severus?" His voice wavered as he knew this was a sensitive subject with his friend, but he persisted. "Go on, this is the best shop in town for them after all."
Severus was not usually one to cave under pressure, but Regulus had asked him, "Sure…" he slowly took off is jacket, "I’ve been needing some dress robes" something he could wear to special functions, if not his own graduation
"Perfect!" the woman seemed delighted
Regulus smiled, glad that he hadn't needed to force Severus into it too harshly. He knew he had enough money with him to pay for both of their set of robes easily. A weight off his mind, he held up his arms so he could be measured.
Measuring tape twisted around both Regulus and Severus’s body, sometimes getting a little more personal then others. The woman was going over with Regulus which fabrics he would prefer.
Severus was thinking over in his head how he could somehow either refuse to buy the custom robes at the end, or arrange to make payments on them.
Regulus chose dark black robes, with the Slytherin logo on the right breast pocket. They were quiet expensive, but his father had given him more than enough. "Yes, they'll be fine, thank you," he told the woman who was serving them, and, his fitting over, started to walk around the shop, looking at the different styles of robes while he waited for Severus' fitting to be over.
Severus picked out a dark blue and black pattern for his dress robes, it was a nice design, but also made of a hardy fabric that would last. After he was done getting measured, the woman went to the back to begin to assemble their fitted robes. Severus stepped down from the box and approached Regulus, "See anything you like?"
Regulus coughed upon hearing Severus' words, and blushed slightly. He hadn't known that his friend made -that sort- of suggestive jokes.. He quickly regained his composure, however, and turned around to look him in the eye. "No. I - I didn't." He scowled at a set of Gryffindor robes. "What are your robes like?"
Severus was surprised to catch the blush, but a little taken aback when Regulus scowled, he had not meant anything by his simple question. "Royal blue and black …" Severus smiled a little, "they should be quite lovely" they were fit for a prince, not a halfblood pretending to be something he wasn’t
Regulus smiled. "Royal Slytherin robes, hm?" He pulled a loose black cloth over the set of Gryffindor robes, which were close at hand, blocking them from view. "Best choice to make." He frowned.
Severus looked a little uneasy, "Actually, I’m going to talk with the attendant a moment" he walked off to try to get her attention, "Miss?" he called into the back room. She was not responsive
Regulus realised that he had scared Severus away with his sudden change of mood. Worried that he had somehow frightened him away and silently composing himself - Not Sirius, not here - he walked over to his friend. "She must be too busy making our robes." He smiled, trying to make things easy again. "Next shall we go to buy potion ingredients? I'm not quite sure what I need."
"Sure." Severus relaxed a little, "Do you have good gloves? Serpent skin or dragon hide?"
Regulus breathed a silent sigh of relief, glad he was able to change the topic to something Severus was comfortable with. "I think my gloves are a little old, actually." He thought he might as well buy some new ones, seeing as he had owned his previous ones for three years.
"Well that’s a good place to begin, and we can go from there. You’ll want to have them properly broken in before you take your examination so that you feel comfortable with all the supplies and tools you handle."
Regulus nodded, listening intently but not really taking any of the information in. "Yeah, and they sell them in the shop with the ingredients?" He hadn't really been shopping for school supplies before, a house elf had always done it for him.
"Yes, I’ll take you to where I like to go, if you don’t mind."
"That's great, thanks Severus. Do you want to go and get lunch somewhere beforehand?" Regulus was hungry, and he was sure the other boy must be too, because it was past one o'clock.
"If you’re hungry, I have the day free, so whatever you wish Regulus." Severus would not admit to his own hunger, nor his own needs
"I am a bit..." Regulus grinned sheepishly, half-embarrassed at his own weaknesses when the older boy seemed to need very little.
The woman finally came out with the robes, each wrapped up individually. She pushed the receipts before each boy in turn, Severus looked to his, eyes narrowed on the expected price. He wanted for Regulus to pay for his first, leave, so that he could talk money with the women in private.
Regulus took the reciept out of the other boy's hand, calmly and cooly. "It's okay, Severus, I'll pay for these.." He smiled slightly before following the woman over to the cash register.
Severus was slightly taken aback, "Regulus … but, you don’t have to do that"
"It's okay, Severus, I forced you to get measured, after all." Regulus looked into the other boy's eyes, trying to see if he was angry. "Besides, it's Christmas." He gave a quiet laugh. Regulus was never really one to laugh loudly or fully - his upbringing had seen to that.
"Yes, but …" Severus tried to reason, then was forced to accept the decision made for him as Regulus paid for the robes, "Thank you Regulus you are too kind. Let me treat you to lunch then?"
"It's okay, Severus." Regulus wasn't sure if him buying lunch defeated the whole point of the trip, but didn't want to insult him by turning down his kindness. "That'd be great, do you have anywhere in mind?"
"... no" Severus berated himself for not having a plan, "What sort of food to you prefer?"
"Oh, any kind, really. I know a nice place not too far from here, if you want?" He did. And it wasn't expensive, either.
"Sure, sounds good"
"Great." Regulus picked his robes up off the counter and walked towards the door.
Severus in turn picked up his robes and made sure to open the door for Regulus, letting him out, following along, "Thank you again Regulus, you didn’t have to get me anything." He found the whole thing quite curious, as buying off Severus would do little secure any family relations for the Blacks, as was customary usually with giving gifts. Severus wasn’t sure why Regulus had done it, once more, it never occured to him that Regulus was just being nice
Regulus smiled tentatively. "It's okay, Severus, really." He laughed nervously. "Merry Christmas?" Regulus didn't mean it. He didn't like Christmas, really, but any excuse to help Severus out was a good one. He enjoyed the older boy's company and regarded him as one of the only real friends he had.
"Merry Christmas" Severus said in turn, touched that Regulus would do this for him, and not sure yet how to give back – he wasn’t used to that after all. The older Slytherin however held his parcel a little closer, secretly cherishing the gift
Regulus just smiled and made his way along the crowded street. "Come on, it's this way."
Severus followed, walking almost shoulder to shoulder with Regulus. Someone of his position should be walking a few paces behind his better, but Severus treated everyone equal, they had to earn to be an exception, and not just because of who you were born to.