‘Well,’ snarled Victoire as she realised the door was locked from the outside and there was no wand to hand, ‘this is your fault. Utterly.’
Teddy Lupin popped a piece of confectionary into his mouth and smiled.
‘It’s the perfect night to be locked in a broom cupboard. Know any stories?’
‘How about the one where McGonagall and Filch find a decapitated Teddy Lupin the day after Halloween, and me saying, “I’m glad I did it!”?’
‘Mmm,’ Teddy grinned, ‘scary.’
She scowled at him, knowing that he was aware of how much he got to her.
‘You’re not afraid of me, Victoire?’
‘No,’ she snapped. ‘Not in the slightest.’
‘You know, there’s no one I’d rather be locked in a cupboard with in this place. Without wands…completely alone…’
‘You can wipe that look off your face! You barely speak two words to me each day.’
‘Glad you’ve kept count, love.’
Victoire cursed as she felt herself blushing and began pounding on the door.
‘Let me out, for the love of Merlin!’
‘You’re acting as if you don’t even like Halloween.’
‘I don’t. It’s a pointless celebration.’
‘We aren’t all lucky enough to be named after a real celebratory day. There’s no Teddy Lupin Day—’
‘Every day is Teddy Lupin Day!’ growled Victoire, falling down beside him in defeat. ‘And I hate that I’m born on Victory Day. It’s like being born on Christmas.’
She stopped when she saw that his face was suddenly serious.
‘Do you,’ he paused and then pinched his nose before adding, ‘do you think he liked Halloween? You know, with people maybe dressing up as wolves. Or what about her…she could have pretended to be anything.’
Victoire knew he was, of course, referring to his parents. She mentally kicked herself as she remembered her birthday was also the anniversary of their deaths.
‘It takes a lot to scare me,’ murmured Teddy. ‘Not people in costumes, not ghosts. Not spooky tales.’ He sighed and added, ‘there are more frightening things in life than that.’
Victoire bit her lip and whispered, ‘So you’re not a Halloween fan either?’
‘Well, Harry’s parents were murdered on Halloween…so that didn’t give me a lot of people to celebrate it with, see. My gran’s not a huge fan of dressing up.’
Victoire smiled at the mental picture and nudged him. ‘You don’t need to dress up; your face is scary enough as it is.’
‘Oh ho,’ he chuckled darkly, ‘the gloves come off, Weasley!’
‘Have you considered wearing a mask?’
They laughed for a moment, the tension easing away. All talk of the horrors of the past gone for the moment.
‘Truth is,’ breathed Victoire, ‘the things that have happened to us in the past hundred years…I don’t think any ghost story or Halloween will ever match in the scare factor.’
‘True,’ Teddy concurred lightly, ‘but you’ve got to let the Muggles have a glimpse.’
‘I suppose,’ she smiled, ‘but only for one day.’
‘So what have you got against Halloween?’ he asked, swivelling to face her.
‘I dunno,’ she shrugged, looking at her feet. ‘Just seems pointless.’
‘Well, what about Valentine’s Day? Is that pointless?’
‘That’s—that’s different, Lupin, it’s entirely different—’
‘Why? Because it’s all about romance rather than goblins and ghouls?’
‘It’s equally ridiculous!’ cried Victoire, turning to glare at him. ‘And if you must know, it’s much scarier than Halloween in many ways.’
‘Tell you what,’ smirked Teddy, putting an arm around her shoulders, ‘you pick a day in the year, let me know and I’ll sanction it Teddy and Victoire Day.’
Once she was laughing happily, he pulled her nearer and said, ‘Happy Halloween, gorgeous,’ and kissed her.