He left for work at the muggle café on a chilly, Wednesday afternoon. He scrubbed dishes late into the evening, burning his hands on the scalding plates as they came out of the dryer. This time he only broke three (his record was twelve), and by the time he left, it was too late to apparate home.
As he stalked down the sidewalk, with his shoulders hunched with his hood pulled up to hide his face, he ran into Isabella Carter outside a pub. She seemed happy to see him - an unusual response - and they exchanged the typical pleasantries. Their conversation, as far as he could remember, went something like this:
"How have you been?"
"I've been managing." By 'managing' he meant 'struggling'.
"Come in, have a drink!"
"I really shouldn't."
"It will be fun, we can catch up."
"No, I mean that I can't. I'm not... you know what, why not?"
There were many reasons why not, but most predominantly, drinking violated his probation. Instead, he shared a drink with her, and then another, and then another. How many more drinks he had after that, he couldn't recall. The following days were hazy in his mind.
It wasn't until late on Friday night, or very early Saturday morning, that Galen staggered into the Edinburgh apartment that he shared with Hedwig and Elodie. He put his hand on the wall to steady himself as he tore off his boots, which landed with a thunk on the floor. He stumbled on his way to the bathroom, cursing when he bumped into the corner of the sofa.
There was a light still on in the kitchen, but he didn't notice.
Edited by Galen Ward, 11 January 2017 - 04:42 AM.