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Navi Wilkes

Now I'm falling apart, I never meant to lose myself

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Navi Wilkes

The unspeakable had finally happened: Navi Wilkes was tired of being in the bakery.

 

After the fourth consecutive week of helping in the variety of locations, the brunette was feeling a little worn from the monotony. While she adored spending time with her father, particularly after such a long period of separation, Navi couldn't help but feel too...ordinary. Slipping back into the baker's daughter guise and having Mr. Wilkes act like everything was back to normal simply didn't feel right.

 

She wanted to talk to her father about all the amazing things at school, but there was so much he didn't understand. Her attempts stopped about the second week of summer vacation. The following week she'd slipped away to Diagon Alley just to remind herself that it was real.

 

From her current post in the bakery, a side table out of the way, the Hufflepuff flicked through the disguised pages of Beedle the Bard. The book jacket she'd switched from The Chronicles of Narnia, just in case. All in all, looking around the bakery, Navi felt torn. Torn in a way she couldn't describe or really understand.

 

Carefully closing the book, she moved through the various tables, picking up discarded plates and mugs after the mid-morning rush. Despite her changed feelings, helping was still second nature. While her father helped the full-time workers in back, Navi assisted up front. She was just wiping down the cleared tables when the bell chimed new customers.

 

A glance was all she spared at the older gentleman who stepped in with a boy in tow. However, the familiar visage caught Navi completely off-guard. "Oh! Desmond?" she asked, completely incredulous.

Edited by Navi Wilkes

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Desmond Tonks

In the blink of a cat’s eye, Desmond’s first year at Hogwarts was over. The spells he learnt were aplenty. Secrets? Even more so. The boy would have stayed on forever if he wasn’t 100% ready to leave his so-called ‘friends’ behind. In spite of Desmond’s best efforts to stay away from the all-too-friendly badgers, Mercutio had been relentless with his phone calls, a development that Desmond hadn’t once expected since he spent majority of the year batting the other boy away. Quite literally, in fact.

 

The budding wizard hadn’t realised how much he missed his home until he saw the familiar maroon bricked wall that lined his house. His bed was as comfy and as sinful as ever. Desmond certainly did not squeal in delight when his hazel eyes landed upon his sparkling chemistry set.

 

The days wore on and Desmond spent much of his time with his mother, Maribelle Tonks and grandfather, Gerome Tonks. They were the only ones who truly understood his, apparently, eccentric nature. They loved him, as he did them. But he couldn’t help but sense that something had changed ever since he returned from Hogwarts.

 

Desmond told them stories. Stories of how he got farted (yes.) on by a professor. Stories of how he flew brooms and crashed into the ground. There was also the one time where he appeared in the house newspaper…for reasons that he rather not articulate. Maribelle and Gerome Tonks listened avidly…but that was all they could do, listen.

 

Clearly, they were out of their depth when it came to the Wizarding World. Recognizing this bit mere weeks into summer, Desmond changed tactics and started enquiring about what they had gotten up to while he had been away. Conversations were much more fruitful since then, even if they were a teensy bit boring.

 

The option to dine in one of London’s finest bakery cafes was thus, a pleasant turn of events. Desmond had quite the sweet tooth, even if he was a failure at remembering when he was supposed to eat. With Maribelle Tonks busy with her bacteria and cultures, it was down to Gerome to rein in his over-exited grandson. Said grandson bounded into the bakery, his grandfather ambling along beside him at a much more sedate pace. Desmond made a beeline for the cake display but stopped short when a familiar voice reached his ears.

 

*blink blink*

 

“Navi? What are you doing here?”

 

CODE YELLOW. ESCAPE. ESCAPE. “Desmond! You didn’t tell me you had friends from school nearby!”

 

“…Grandpa. She’s-"

 

“Why don’t you join us for tea Miss? Or are you busy?....Oh! Where are my manners? I’m Gerome Tonks, Desmond’s old and wrinkly grandfather.” Wink wink.

 

(; ̄д ̄)

Edited by Desmond Tonks

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Navi Wilkes

When the bell first chimed, the brunette had hardly registered the new arrivals. It truly was a matter of another day, another customer. The tedium of muggle life had become far more than Navi ever thought she would have to handle and far more obvious than she had ever expected. She still hadn't decided whether it was positive or negative that her father had only begun to notice her disconnect.

 

So, when Desmond Tonks appeared out of nowhere, Navi suppressed a mixture of panic, surprise, and general confusion. How was she supposed to handle this? "I-well, this is one of my father's bakeries." Slightly wringing the towel in her hand, she gestured to the calligraphic name behind the counter 'Wilkes' Bakery'. An obvious indication, but she wasn't surprised Desmond hadn't made the connection. He seemed just as shocked to see someone from school as she was.

 

"What are you doing here?" She parroted back, though obviously he was hoping for some sweets. Why else did one enter a bakery? The two twelve-year-olds must have worn matching expressions of social awkwardness until Navi's attention was drawn to her housemate's extremely genial-looking companion.

 

A few moments was all it took for the Hufflepuff girl to realize just how different Desmond was from his grandfather. She found herself immediately swept up in his warm, grandfatherly talk, and before she knew it, she was making tea and delivering a tray of goodies to the table. A bit late, Navi gave the older man a small smile. "I'm Navi Wilkes. Nice to meet you, Mr. Tonks." Settling everything at the table, the girl slid a strawberry shortcake over to Des. She made a point to know her friends' favorites.

 

Still unsure how exactly to interact with someone from Hogwarts outside of Hogwarts, Navi lifted the tray again only to have it gently but firmly taken from her hands. "Please do join us. You have time, yes?" The brunette watched the old man's eyes glance around the sparsely occupied room and lowered herself into a seat. "I...well, yes. Umm..." Her hands immediately reached to serve the tea. "How has your summer been, Des?"

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Desmond Tonks

Of course. When there are cakes, Navi was never far away. His question, in hindsight was a…stu- careless one. In his ardent pursuit of something sweet, he just didn’t manage to consider that the ‘Wilkes’ in the shop’s name could have meant that Wilkes, if you catch his drift. Furthermore it felt almost…odd to see Navi outside of Hogwarts settings. Sometimes, it was almost as though the magical school belonged in another world, separate from their boring but, sometimes exciting, London. Seeing Navi in this very humble and magic-less shop reminded Desmond that it was not the case.

 

Well, at least this meant that he hadn’t dreamt up the whole experience. With his wand and cauldrons locked away, (his mother had been suitably notified about the no magic under seventeen rule), there was barely any wriggle room for his brand of magical disasters.

 

*Sigh* He’d going to have to stick to boring old chemical explosions then.

 

“To sample the offerings.” replied Desmond, always the sort to pick an unorthodox way of replying simple questions. “You have the good stuff here….don’t you?” Because if she didn’t, then he would have a good excuse for getting him and is Grandpa out of there.

 

But it was not to be, it seemed, for Grandpa Gerome was already charming his way onto Navi’s good side. Now that he thought about it, did she have a bad side even?

 

Oooooo….strawberry shortcake. He stabbed at it with a fork and lifted a small morsel into the air. Then, he devoured it, the sweetness of the cream a perfect contrast to the slight sourness of the strawberry. Perfect.

 

Maybe…just maybe, he’d let the girl partake in this outing with his Grandpa.

 

“Hmmm?” sounded Desmond, barely registering the girl’s question. A carefully arched brow from Grandpa Gerome was what prompted the boy to try harder.

 

“Mind-numbingly boring, to the nth degree. And you, did you spike anyone else’s drinks and cakes?”

 

…It was a purely plausible circumstance. That, I can assure you.

Edited by Desmond Tonks

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Navi Wilkes

Leave it to Desmond to act casual no matter the situation. Some part of the brunette adored and relied on his steady presence while another part of her (heavily influenced by Mercutio) wanted to shake him out of his suave demeanor. That really wasn't fair or befitting of a twelve-year old, but if one looked close, there were a couple cracks in his stoic visage.

 

With a small but slightly smug expression, Navi smiled at her housemate. "We have the best here." How could he doubt, having been privy to her constant baking the year before. Granted, there was something about being surrounded by the smell of bakery that made the entire experience that much more delicious. It was her second favorite part about coming home, and one of the main reasons she spent so much time in the kitchens. Not that many of her friends knew this, but more than half the time, the Hufflepuff just studied down there to be surrounded by smells of home.

 

Now that she was home, she missed the Common Room. It was a terrible conundrum.

 

Sipping at her tea, Navi let her thoughts just drift while Desmond and his grandfather nibbled on the treats. This entire split life situation was becoming increasingly difficult. At least her friend seemed to be under the same umbrella of tedium that she was.

 

"Agreed, thi-" She sputtered and had to set down her tea. "I've never spiked any cakes, Des," she tried with a slight quaver in her voice. "And the lemonade was just because everyone was in a foul mood." Really, being pestered about morals by...well, he hadn't mentioned morals. Maybe it truly was curiosity.

 

"Anyway, this break," she peeked over her shoulder to be sure her father wasn't in ear-shot. "It's been duller than watching paint dry, and I did that once." She gestured to some of the calligraphic designs along the walls, new additions within the past week. "I hate to mention it to my father though...we hardly saw each other much last year."

 

But Desmond really wouldn't want to hear her whine.

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Desmond Tonks

“Oh? What makes you say that? Did you guys win some awards or something? There’s this other cake shop two blocks over that is always packed, you know.” Desmond chattered, not really sure why he saw fit to mention the Wilkes’ competition. Maybe it was because it was obvious that Navi was proud of her family’s bakery and maybe he just wanted to ruffle her feathers a little. Objectively, his housemate was a nice person but he often found her too nice. She needed to grow a backbone and Desmond figured he could actually help with that. Why was he keen on it you ask? Well, because it was fun.

 

“…You know that is not convincing in the least right?” Desmond said before Grandpa Gerome coughed loudly and called his grandson out for his rudeness. “What? I was only being honest!” insisted the boy. Wasn’t honesty one of the traits Hufflepuff espoused?

 

Okay, maybe he was just misinterpreting the words of Helga Hufflepuff for his benefit.

 

“Don’t mind my grandson.” Grandpa Gerome said as he nudged the plate of cake closer to Desmond. He tapped on the rim of the plate warningly, encouraging Desmond to eat. Pfft. The boy thought – like that will stop him from talking nonsense. It would, but only for a minute.

 

As Desmond busied himself with his cake, his grandfather took the opportunity to engage his grandson’s schoolmate. “Desmond has been telling us all about Hogwarts. It seems to have changed little since my brother’s days. He was…what was the term? Muggleborn? Yes – that’s it. How is Hogwarts like for you little miss? Was it exciting for you?” Grandpa Gerome asked, his voice a little croaky.

 

Silly grandpas and their need to coddle children all the time.

 

Desmond swallowed down a huge mouthful of cake as Navi talked about the lack of excitement in her life now that she was back home. It was at this point that Desmond realised that Navi was having the same exact problem he was. Both of them had an itch they couldn’t scratch, an itch of a magical nature that wouldn’t be scratched for another few weeks or months.

 

It was nice to realise that he wasn’t alone in his thoughts.

 

Seriously though. Grandpa Gerome was right there. If Desmond talked anymore, Grandpa Gerome would be sure to start drawing links. He didn’t want his Grandpa and in time, his mother, to feel bad. Instead, he went, “Hmmmm.”

 

Helpful. Very Helpful.

 

“I’m sure you can do better than paint.” He decided finally, skirting the issue. “Have you thought of going to Diagon Alley? I heard there’s this place called Knockturn Alley there. Doesn’t it sound interesting?”

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Navi Wilkes

Most of the wind in her metaphorical sails disappeared as Desmond demanded proof of her claim. Sure, she knew there were other bakeries, but she wasn't quite sure why her supposed friend was demanding evidence. It's not like he was turning down the shortcake in front of him. Navi knew she could have mentioned that her father's bakeries were always swimming in orders for future events - business meetings, house parties, even weddings, but her heart wasn't really in it anymore.

 

Jokingly boasting with friends was one thing, but she truly didn't have awards or anything to back it up. Staring into her tea, the girl avoided the boy's gaze, feeling herself deflate. So much for friendly support. She remained mute as Desmond continued his slightly mean-spirited tirade.

 

As the older man's tone, the brunette lifted her gaze to him and gave a weak smile. "Ho-School has been good. I never thought I would be able to do things like that, and it's nice to feel accomplished about something." Because Merlin knows she didn't need more jibes at her confidence. Desmond. Truth be told, classes had been a wonder for her. Despite knowing nothing about the magical world beforehand, she excelled in classes. It was outside of classes where she really needed work.

 

Still answering questions, Navi noted the slight adjustment in Desmond that indicated he was actually listening. Apparently something she said struck a chord with him. His clear desire to remain quiet gave her little to work with however, and she was not one to pry, particularly not right now.

 

Since she had met the boy, Desmond had shown himself to be a singularly odd individual. One minute he was plucky and desperate to be saved from fiery candy, the next he loomed over his possessions like a dragon. He didn't seem to desire to get close to anyone, yet he indulged Mercutio of all people. Navi had thought she was somewhere on his good list, but each interaction gave her doubt. A thought tickled at the corner of her mind that perhaps she should just avoid him, let him be.

 

It wasn't like she was figuring him out, in any case.

 

At first, all Navi did was shrug at Des' suggestion. Sure, calligraphy was slow work, but the final result looked pretty good. "I've visited a couple of times." She held up her book as evidence. "Beedle the Bard." Finally, she looked at her friend again, both eyebrows up. She'd heard rumours too. "Umm... isn't that place supposed to be...dangerous? Like, illegal dangerous?" Not that it would likely bother Desmond, but it wasn't somewhere Navi would willingly venture.

 

And he probably knew that.

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Desmond Tonks

Navi was upset. Too bad Desmond was a little too preoccupied with his cake to notice he was the cause of it all. (See? Easily distracted.) “This is really quite a delicacy Ms. Wilkes.” Gerome Tonks, who ordered a banana muffin and coffee set, spoke up from his grandson’s left. His voice was tinted with worry for some reason but Desmond easily shrugged it off. Instead, he was focused on slicing his strawberry into small bits, concluding that it would help prolong his experience with the pastry. Maybe he could even ask for a second serving.

 

Now, Desmond was frequently construed as mean but more often than not, he was simply oblivious. Make no mistake about his intelligence, however. The boy was a smart cookie but he could also be gloriously dumb in some areas. One of these happened to be dealing with people. Sensitive, he was not. At this point, it was highly likely that the Sorting Hat had put him with the badgers because of the simple fact that he needed to pick up people skills. The latter of which was clearly a work in progress.

 

It was just sad that individuals like Navi had to suffer for it. Truthfully, Navi was better off not calling Desmond out for it. Chances were, he would probably argue that she was the one who wanted to be near him so he had full rights to be himself.

 

Yeah – that wouldn’t go down well at all.

 

“Next year is supposed to be even more awesome though. I want to get to the bigger spells and bigger potions.” Desmond went on to say as he took several gulps from the glass of milk that came with the slice of heaven. As someone who was always on the go, Desmond refused to dawdle on the present. It was yet another factor that contributed to his lack of insight to the emotions of others.

 

“Well, I don’t know about that.” Yes he did. “But I heard that they sell potion ingredients that you can’t get elsewhere! I want to take a peek at least – who knows what I am missing out!” And he couldn’t possibly get into trouble just by walking down a single street, could he? “There is so much more to this world and I do not want to dismiss this intriguing alley without even making a single attempt to go there.”

 

Clearly, this boy was all about the me me me.

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Navi Wilkes

Accepting Mr. Tonks compliment with a nod and a weak smile, the brunette tried to inwardly pull herself together. She should know better by now with Desmond to either not take things personally or be careful what she said. His obvious lack of response to her sudden mute nature made it quite obvious that he was, by most standards, oblivious. Unlike her friend, however, the boy's minuscule bits of strawberry did not escape Navi's notice.

 

Without much of a word, she collected the empty plates, poured more tea for the gentleman (that would be his grandfather - Desmond had a long way to go to deserve that term), and scurried over to the counter. Replacing the plates with another small selection of treats, including another short cake, she returned to the table.

 

Had it been anyone else, the manner in which Navi placed the shortcake in front of Desmond would have been labeled as pointed. From her, it was hardly noticeable as anything out of the ordinary. She probably did have a lot of growing to do, but it wasn't likely to happen without fierce prompting. But that prompting wasn't likely to come from her friends. She trusted them too much to combat their comments and opinions, and as such, she wasn't even able to express her disappointment to his face. Not yet, at least.

 

Navi managed another smile. She was also looking forward to newer, more complicated spells and potions. With a side glance at Mr. Tonks, she added casually. "I would like to as well, but I'd also like to work with you. If I may." Judging by the silence that had encompassed her friend at her last question, she attempted to avoid mentioning his experiments. It was entirely plausible that he kept those from his family as well as his friends.

 

"There's probably a reason they aren't available elsewhere," she cautioned, her eyebrow quirked at his sudden interest. Shaking her head, she added, "I don't want to miss anything either, but we should at least make some inquiries before leaping in head first." Navi laughed softly to herself. "Unless you're taking a leaf from Mercutio's book." She wouldn't be surprised to find their more animated friend had influenced both of them.

 

The debate was whether it was for the better.

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Desmond Tonks

Not many people could handle Desmond’s brand of callousness and frankly, he was surprised that Navi was still sticking around. On all counts, the girl was the very opposite of him - friendly, sociable and willing to give in her all for her friends. She was, in a way, like Mercutio without the whole in-your-face aspect. When Desmond first started out at Hogwarts, getting to know others was the last item on his agenda. Now, he was somehow put into situations where he would see his schoolmates outside of school. Sure, his life as a wizard had been topsy-turvy. But this was perhaps the most bizarre development in the history of Desmond Tonks.

 

Navi cleared the plates and replenished the cake supply, much to Desmond’s pleasure. “Are you planning to take over this place when the time comes?” The boy queried, taking note of the ease at which the girl navigated the place. It wasn’t a far-fetched assumption; the boy would think. Her serving technique could use some work though. Take a sizable bite out of his new cake, the boy waited for the girl’s response. It would be interesting to know if she had any plans, considering her Muggleborn status.

 

It was hard to pretend that Desmond didn’t consider this for himself as well. Once upon a time, he once thought that he would follow his mother in his footsteps. But surely a job like a chemist wouldn’t be suited to an individual who had experienced the wonders of potion making.

 

Speaking of which… “Well, I always run out of ingredients. And of course, I am going to go beyond rat fur this year.” Had the girl’s pet been horrified at becoming naked? Maybe. “Hence, Knockturn Alley.” Not considering the danger the place posed was just like Desmond. However, now that Navi mentioned it, it was perhaps in his best interest to consider how he should go about doing it.

 

There was this thing about how Muggleborns were looked down upon in this society, much to his chagrin.

 

“And no. Mercutio can be the one who makes all the foolhardy decisions. I am honestly expecting that to backfire one of these days.” It was only a matter of time.

 

It was at that moment that more customers entered the shop, making a beeline for the counter. Desmond flickered his eyes to Navi, expectant.

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Navi Wilkes

It was almost bewildering how Navi had managed to find the few close friends that she had. Nowhere along the lines could she remember having put herself out there enough to ‘make friends’, but here they were. Desmond and Mercutio were easily the closest friends she had which was odd considering how opposite and bizarre they were themselves. It didn’t help that her dormmates seemed to keep to themselves to the point that she really didn’t know them well. When confronted with that, she kind of had to find other friends. But even then, Navi couldn’t quite identify why those two. Their friendship had just sort of…happened.

 

For as much as they might be opposites though, Desmond certainly gave the brunette things to think about. His question prompted a furrowed brow and contemplative expression. “That was the plan,” she admitted. “Now…I’m not so sure.” The revelation of her magical ability had set all her potential future plans on end. As much as she loved baking, would that still be her course after years of study at Hogwarts? Unless she looked into magical treats (which the Weasley’s seemed to have covered), Navi wasn’t sure where she’d end up.

 

“I mean…there are probably just as many magical opportunities as there are muggle, right?” Maybe this was worth a bit more research.

 

“You could always order ingredients…it might be safer.” Not that the brunette wasn’t curious about further exploring the magical alleyways. She simply didn’t want this to be the last time she ever saw her friend. No matter how eccentric of a friend he happened to be.

 

The sudden arrival of more customers brought their conversation to a hasty end as Navi rose from her seat. “Feel free to take the other shortcakes,” she added with a quick wave to the new arrivals. “It was a pleasure to meet you, Mr. Tonks, and I suppose I’ll see you soon, Des.” With another wave, this one directed at the pair, the baker’s daughter scuttled over to the counter with her polite-customer-mask firmly in place.

 

End.

Edited by Navi Wilkes

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