Norah’s eyes were swelling up and whatever was causing it must have been contagious because Eugene felt his eyes scrunching up too. He didn’t like seeing people crying, it was even worse than being upset yourself, and made Eugene want to throw pies at things just so everyone would have something else to look at. He would have tried it now except the last time he threw a pie a pigeon had died and he had sworn on its mangled corpse that he would never throw another pie again. Unfortunately, Eugene was very good at keeping his word to dead birds and forced himself to look at Norah’s leaky face and to listen to her sad tale.
All Eugene knew about purebloods was what Leo had taught him, and the main message had been that they were bullies who wanted everyone to be the same so that they could be bored all the time. They were, Leo had explained, the sort of people who wouldn’t even cheer when a pinata exploded which didn’t make their weddings sound like a lot of fun - everyone knew the only reason to get married was because you got to put on a snazzy outfit and party real hard.
If he had to marry some guy who only wore plaid and had never tried on a multicoloured bow-tie, Eugene, would probably feel like becoming rabbit food too. But, the thing was, Eugene was just starting to like Norah and he selfishly didn’t want her to transform into a carrot right now - not after he’d already added her to his Christmas card list. “I’d totally date you,” Eugene blurted out. “You’re really fun and not all boring and stuffy. Like I BET you can burst a pinata open in seconds.”
Eugene had never thought about dating Norah. He hadn’t even thought about kissing her. Mostly, Eugene just thought about kissing Elliot, and sometimes Joey, but that was normal because they were his friends. Norah hadn’t been his friend but he felt like she was becoming one now so the ‘thinking about kissing them all the time’ part of friendship would probably come later. Only Norah didn’t need to be cheered up later, she needed it now, so there was only one thing for Eugene to do. He leaned forward to kiss Norah on the lips.
“Sorry,” he said, afterwards, recalling something his brother had said back in June when Jack McVeigh’s fist had made contact with Eugene’s face following a brief kiss. “I forgot to ask if it was okay first.”