BBW Natasha Visits a 'Wizarding School' (lesbian, stuffing, sex, MWG)

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[Author's Note: This is a fantasy story about two consenting adults who rekindle a friend relationship. It involves weight gain between two amazing women. Natasha is visiting her childhood friend, who has taken up a teaching post at wizarding institution. Arriving by train, Natasha cannot wait to see her friend whom she has only been able to correspond with. As she journeys closer and closer, Natasha remembers an event from their past that she cannot seem to forget. Will this visit rekindle those memories in both women?
Disclaimer: This story borrows tangential elements from several popular wizarding book series, but as per the guidelines of this website, will not be explicitly named to keep the legal people happy. Enjoy :)]


Natasha Visits a "Wizarding School"
by runningsoft


Chapter 1

They say that when you are travelling by train, that the window seats are always the best. You always find your trip passes a little more quickly and there’s nearly never a dull view. Natasha had never quite been on a train quite like this before and even though she didn’t have the seat nearer the window, she found there was plenty to look at from where she was sitting.

“Anything off the trolley, dear?” came a voice from Natasha’s left, taking her out of her reverie.

“Hmm?”

“Would you like anything to eat, dear?” said the woman.

Natasha put her finger in a page, turned her head and looked up. A woman of advanced age but surprisingly spry gesticulated with pride to the cart she was pushing. It was now directly at eye-level and it donned on Natasha that the woman was offering travel snacks to the passengers.

“Oh, not at the moment, no. But thanks.” She said to the woman who nodded with kind eyes.

“Don’t worry, dear. I’ll be back later on should you change your mind.” With a wink, she tottered down the corridor of the train and entered in conversation with the next seat.

This time, a little girl and boy of about ten poked their parents from their magazine reading and Natasha watched with interest as the children first pointed, then cheered when the woman handed them various sweets and treats that she had never seen before. Money exchanged hands between the woman and the children’s parents and she proceeded down the corridor and finally out of sight.

Watching the children tuck into their food, the volume of the train car now dropping by several decibels, Natasha returned to her work. She had her finger tucked between pages of a manuscript, red pen in her hand.

She clicked the nib of her pen back out, flipped to the page she was currently reading and flicked her wrist to look at her watch. It’s nearly lunchtime, she thought as her stomach gave a lazy grumble.

Natasha was a newly promoted editor of a well-known publishing company. She had been in publishing since college, having scrapped her way up the ladder but loved every minute of it. Since she was a little girl, she always wanted to be a writer as she had an inventive imagination. Five years on, she had gone from entry level ‘coffee gopher’ to the position she now held. It was good pay, but the hours were insane.

She tucked a lock of brown hair back behind her ear and poured over the manuscript she now held. It was a second-draft and she and it’s author were making great progress. This novel, a detective noir, was the third in an already successful series and Natasha had every intention of making this one even more of a page-turner than its’ predecessor.

As she read deeper into the pages, her red pen making the odd note here, a scribble there; a low grumble echoed through her body.

“Hey you, knock it off,” she whispered to her stomach as well as stifled a yawn. Hungry and tired.

Almost as if by summons, the woman pushing the trolley was working her way back up the train, her face beaming towards each previous customer with a look that read, ‘enjoying your purchases?

Natasha raised a finger and made eye contact with the woman who stopped just opposite her now.

“Anything off the trolley, dear?” she repeated, the question almost lyrical, inviting.

“Yes, but erm—there’s so much to choose from?” she said it as a question and less of a statement.

“Oh yes, the Chogward’s Express offers its travelers many choices as our passengers tend to come from all over the world, these days.

“I can certainly see that,” said Natasha smiling.

Her eyes peered at the cart, recognizing nothing and noting many brands that did not exist in the United States. There were purple boxes of what looked like chocolates in the shape of toads, tall licorice-looking sticks that might be made to resemble magic wands; boxes of jelly beans that represented many flavors and other packages, parcels and bags of goodies that all seemed to look quite inviting.

“Might you have anything a little more filling than candy? I’ve really not eaten since breakfast,” said Natasha whose eyes could not stop taking in the items on the cart.

The woman nodded in understanding, “Oh, don’t I know the feeling,” she said pressing hand to her abdomen with a gentle pat. She looked down and selected a blue button next to the side of the cart, which Natasha hadn’t noticed before and the cart did something quite unexpected.

The items of candy and sugary sweets were vanishing only to be replaced by more adult selections. Wrapped sandwiches, boxed salads, smoothies on ice and what smelled like freshly brewed coffee now greeted Natasha’s eyes.

“More like it?” said the woman, knowingly.

“Definitely.”’

Natasha paused for a moment, her stomach making slightly louder grumbling sounds now. She selected two sandwiches and the salad, “Oh, what flavor is the coffee?” she asked, reaching for her wallet.

“Pumpkin, of course.”

“Sounds lovely.”

Natasha nodded and woman poured her the coffee as she made room and lowered the dining tray off the back of the train seat in front of her, her manuscript and pen now temporarily forgotten.

Items laid on the tray, Natasha gave the woman British pounds, money she had exchanged before she left for this trip and the woman smiled as she took the money and offered returned change.

“This coffee smells amazing, thank you,” said Natasha taking a first sip. Not scalding and flavored just right.

Her stomach gave a loud protest and the woman smiled and as she was pushing past Natasha to serve the next occupant, she laid down on the table already laden with food a wrapped package that looked like a dessert.

“On the house. Pumpkin Pasties,” said the woman with a wink as Natasha’s stomach gave a second “Urrp!” and she trod off.

A little reddened in the face, her stomach betraying her hunger, Natasha unwrapped the first sandwich and took a bite. It was amazing and tasted just like home. She smiled at the memory and leaned back in her chair and almost stared out the window. The occupant, a stranger, who had the window seat had been sleeping their entire trip and thankfully was not a snorer; had his face pressed up against the glass and partially obscured the view.

Natasha continued munching on her food as she thought back on the catalyst that started her on this trip, a mini-break from work, to visit a friend she hadn’t seen since her early days at elementary school.

She and her best friend, Kristen has been next door neighbors since they were both in diapers. Their families got along and they essentially grew up as official sisters. They did everything together: family trips, birthday’s, meals and neighborhood explorations.

Then, when Kristen turned 11, her parent’s had informed her that she was going off to a ‘boarding school’ abroad. Natasha was crestfallen then and didn’t quite understand why. Kristen said she would be back every summer and promised to write (which she did) every other week. Natasha made new friends during her teenage years, but Kristen always remained her best friend.

After her ‘boarding school’, Kristen returned, as if she had never left, and the girls went to college together. It was like no time had ever passed and they had a very happy four years together. Natasha studying writing and Kristen taking education classes to become a teacher.

Graduation happened and Kristen and Natasha moved out of their old neighborhoods to pursue careers. Which is where Natasha was heading now: she had received an email from Kristen a month ago asking her what she was doing one long weekend in the Fall.

Natasha was so happy to hear from her friend, she replied back instantly.

“Heyyy, you!

It’s been so long, how have you been? How’s school, teach? Me, I’ve been working like a mule but the bonus pay is amazing. I got that promotion finally – it was about a year in the making, but hey—who’s counting, right?

Of course I’d love to come visit. The fall is when we get hammered with work, so as long as it’s okay that I bring a little work along, I can stay for upwards of a week if you’ll have me. Oh, it’s going to be so good to catch up. Seeing anyone? Cannot wait to give you a great big hug!

Love from mom and dad also,

Natasha

X


Kristen had replied not shortly thereafter with similar sentiments and arrangements were made. Natasha smiled at the memory of their exchange. Particularly in one of the final emails where Kristen had told her the train, called the Chogward’s Express would be an interesting experience and that she should ‘just go what whatever happens, I’ll explain later.

If the deal with the trolley car was any indication, she would certainly have questions for Kristen when she saw her.



Natasha was really looking forward to seeing her friend. She had been in and out of a few relationships, having just ended one that went rather badly just a few months prior. The stress of working had seen to that. Men couldn’t understand that she didn’t want to just watch them play video games all evening while she worked all hours to get manuscripts edited, scanned and sent on to the authors; or taking zoom calls with the editors and publishing houses to see where in the processes the books were.

Sure, the sex was great and Natasha was a natural performer, but the men didn’t seem to last.

Kristen on the other hand was a little mysterious when it came to her relationships. She gave Natasha enough details through email to make her cackle with laughter at the misfortune of a bad date or two, but it seemed that she too put work before home life.

She thought back to Kristen and their years at university. They studied hard but they also found time for fun. There was one memory Natasha had locked away in her heart and the email from Kristen had bubbled it back to the surface.

Natasha closed her eyes and reminisced…
 
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Chapter 2



During one particularly hard exam week in their first year, both girls had been stressed to absolute breaking point.

“Oh my fucking god!” shouted Kristen to the dormitory room they shared.

“What’s up?” said Natasha, who was equally perturbed by her own studies.

Kristen was on the floor next to her bed. Papers strewn all around her with scribbles and sticky notes. A highlighter in one hand and a subtle quill in the other (a habit she had acquired from that boarding school she attended). She sat, legs folded in pajama shorts and loose-fitting top and looked morose.

“Why do they insist on making these exam prep questions so damn hard to interpret!?” she looked up at Natasha, a strand of ash blonde hair falling onto her face, adding to the look of an exasperated student.

Natasha tucked a lock of her own hair behind her ear and put down her pen and sets of notes she as pouring over. She consulted the clock that hung on their wall.

“Hey, its nearly midnight. I don’t think we are going to absorb anymore tonight, err today.”

Kristen threw her quill and highlighter on the floor and made to stand up, her knees creaking from the position she forced them in for several hours. She shook out her legs and stretched her arms above her head revealing a lithe abdomen.

Natasha hadn’t meant to stare but she was tired and a little punch-drunk from her hours of studying.

Kristen didn’t seem to notice and Natasha quickly closed what she was sure was her gaping mouth. Walking over to the fridge, Kristen went to the freezer and Natasha knew what that meant.

She got off her study chair, adjusted her clothes and grabbed two spoons.

This was a nearly nightly ritual for the girls. Doubly, when it came to exams or study papers. They would work until they nearly cried, one would console the other and they would commiserate over whatever cheap ice cream they could afford on a student’s budget.

“Thanks,” said Kristen as she thumbed off the lid of the container—mint chocolate—and took the offered spoon.

“My bed’s cleaner,” said Natasha as they needed a space to sit and share the ice cream. Kristen eyed here own bed – a mess of notes, tangled sheets and a pair of underwear that hadn’t made it to the hamper.

The girls sat like two peas in a pod, backs against the wall on Natasha’s bed. They pulled the sheets over their outstretched legs, Kristen holding the ice cream while Natasha reached for her laptop to que up a television comedy they would play to help decompress.

The months of study this particular semester had been daunting on Natasha. Normally, she enjoyed exercise to siphon off the stress of academics, but she had been negligent on that front. She had spent one too many a night stress-eating, often with Kristen, but without the advantage of a fast metabolism.

She had acquired the freshmen fifteen and if she was honest, probably a few more than that. At 5’7’’ she was a fairly tall girl, but even twenty pounds of gained weight were sure to be visible to the public even though she carefully hid it under baggy clothing.

So, as Natasha reached, outstretched, for her laptop, she felt her shirt pull away from her body and the cool air of the room touch her belly like an ice cube.

She jerked back a little too quickly and nearly knocked her laptop off the nightstand where it served as both placement for her reading glasses and television stand during their shared ice cream evenings.

“Mhm, You okay?” said Kristen, between mouthfuls of ice cream.

“Y-yeah, I’m fine,” said Natasha adjusting her shirt to cover her belly and taking a smaller than normal bite of ice cream.

“This one’s a great episode,” said Kristen, eyes glued to the television.

One episode became two and two became three as the girls laughed at the show, shared in the goings-on of their class schedules, commiserated about who had a harder degree and finally giving over to the exam gods that whatever will be on those pages are already written and whatever is in their heads will have to be good enough.

“Oh man,” yawned Kristen, arms over her head, empty spoon of ice cream in one hand, “I am read for sleep. You?”

Natasha, who held the ice cream tub now (it’s content emptied by the pair of them) was rendered speechless at the site of Kristen’s middle. Was it her imagination, drugged with exam stress and near-sleep exhaustion that her friend’s middle was no longer lithe?

“T-totally,” said Natasha, who was sure she was staring.

Kristen, this time noticing followed Natasha’s eyes to her own abdomen and slowly lowered her arms, her shirt falling back over her belly like a curtain call. “Oh this old thing?” she said, raising up her shirt again and cupping a small belly, “It’ll be gone by morning.”

Her eyes flicked towards Natasha’s and then down at her belly. Kristen reached out and poked her friend, then looked up again. “No doubt yours will too, after the exams. I know you haven’t been running like usually these last few weeks…”

Natasha felt happy and understood and knew no judgement was coming.

“Thanks, it’s just—” she trailed off, making to close down the laptop and toss away the empty ice cream tub.

“Just what?” said Kristen, still sitting on Natasha’s bed.

“I dunno. I just fell. Like, I dunno. I guess my metabolism sucks,” she said, returning to her bed and suddenly dreaming of sleep so she wouldn’t have to continue this discussion. The exam was tomorrow morning.

“Hey, mine sucks too. But we will survive. Hey, hate to be a nudge, but do you mind if I sleep here tonight with you? My bed is seriously a warzone of papers, clothes and who knows what else.”

This wasn’t a strange request and Natasha nodded in affirmation. They had spent their younger years doing this and it was also a source of comfort during the exam season. They had simply fallen back into an old, familiar pattern.

Kristen made room and Natasha slid under the covers, set her alarm for an early wake up and with the fullness of ice cream and a warmer bed, shut off the lights.

The girls wriggled until each found comfort. They lay like two sardines, feet and thighs touching; each with hands across their chest.

Natasha let out a sigh, still obviously perturbed by her sluggish metabolism and Kristen took the bait.

Kristen laughed, “Hey, c’mon, we’re young. A few running miles and you’ll be back to that flat stomach with the three moles in no time.” She rolled over and raked a hand, friendly, across her Natasha’s belly.

Natasha felt the blood rush to her face and was relieved they were in darkness. The triad of moles of which Kristen had referred to were mere inches about her sex, not her stomach. She thought back to how would have seen that.

She usually changed in her room closet and was doing it more so these days, conscious of her expanded body. Might there have been a day when Kristen had seen her? Kristen had classes in the morning and Natasha sometimes changed in their shared room as she always got up earlier. She was a quiet dresser and always felt reassured by Kristen’s loud snores, that her privacy was upheld…

Sometime later, she never knew when, Natasha was awoken by the sound of soft moaning that sounded in her ear.

Her eyes popped open and she recognized the sounds coming from Kristen’s side of the bed. The faint moonlight that their cheap dormitory curtains could not blot out cast a faint blue light over the room.

Kristen was on her back, bed sheets clutched on one hand up to her chest. Her hair had come undone out of her bun and lay diagonally across her face. Her legs were slowly, rhythmically rubbing together and Natasha could feel Kristen’s shoulder worrying and reaching for the place where she was sure was between her legs. Was—she masturbating?

The moaning remained soft, nearly undetectable as she felt her friend exploring her own body during sleep. Natasha had certainly heard of ‘wet dreams’ and had certainly experienced many herself –but never experienced someone else’s.

Kristen’s eyes remained closed, she was not biting her lower lip and her breathing became a little shallower. Small beads of sweat began to pool around her forehead and as she adjusted her body under the covers, a warm animal smell greeted the air and Natasha breathed in deeply.

The air seemed to rush out from her body and she took a quick breath. Natasha had held her breath. She had not wanted to let that aroma go, but she needn’t have worried. She could hear the sounds of working, lubricated fingers and the scent reached her nostrils once more.

Natasha closed her own eyes and bit down on her lip trying to process so many thoughts. Exams. Kristen. Exams…Kristen…she didn’t know how it happened, but both of her hands slid down the sides of her body. Subtly, she lifted her ups and pulled down her pajamas and wriggled them down past her needs. With the room she had on her side of the mattress, she let her leg furthest from Kristen fall away and discovered she was already wet.

Reaching with a trembling hand, she let her fingers migrate down past her belly and down through the forest of manicured body hair she kept; past the three moles who greeted her like and old friend and entered her sex.

Pleasure like she had not felt before flooded through her as she repeatedly explored herself. Keeping quiet, she bit down hard on her lip and tried to ignore the lightning that shot through her brain.

As she was bringing herself to climax, she felt a hand that was not her own. It was a friendly hand, of that she knew. A warm hand, a wet hand. Kristen’s hand.

“I couldn’t sleep…’Tasha,” same the voice from miles away. Were they words, or had she merely imagined them?

She felt Kristen’s body stir and roll over to spoon her. Natasha became aware that her friend was rubbing her sex against her leg. Natasha let out an audible moan and spread her legs and pulled Kristen’s hand inside her. Her insides went taught as a hand far more expert than her own began to flip switches and breakers of desire that she didn’t know were possible.

Eyes still closed, Natasha climaxed and felt a warm, wet hand guide her own back to her sex while she could hear Kristen brings hers to her mouth to taste her! The aromatics of the two women caused Natasha to moan and climax again and she could feel wetness spread from between her legs. Kristen’s leg held her firm as the rictus of ecstasy slowly died down over many minutes.

“Kristen…Krissy?” Natasha breathed, finally opening her eyes.

She turned to see a sleeping Kristen, lightly snoring, mouth slightly agape in exactly the same position they were when they fell asleep. Bewildered, Natasha hoisted her bottoms back up, aware of the warm reward they carried and was instantly asleep.
 
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Chapter 3

It was the jostle of the train slowing down that brought Natasha out of her reverie.

Eyes snapping open, she was suddenly felt aware as if all eyes of the train passengers were on her, though they weren’t. She could feel her heart thumping loudly against her chest, which was now beginning its decrescendo to normal rhythm. Her skin felt warm and she could feel the beginnings of sweat accumulate at her chest and armpits. Looking down, she saw one hand was nestled low on her lap, had it been inching towards her sex?

She brought her knees together and squeezed, feeling the moistness and now aware of that low hum of electricity that stirred deep in her core. She closed her eyes again and bit her lip softly trying to will the sensation away, though a soft moan escaped her lips, betraying her.

“You going to eat that?” said a voice next to her, nearly making her jump in fright.

“Ah-what!?” said Natasha, startled.

“I was asking whether you were going to finish that.”

It was the man from the window seat whom she had shared this entirely silent train ride. He’d been asleep when she boarded the train all those hours ago. He was now pointing to the remainder of her lunch: one unopened sandwich packet. His expression was hopeful.

“Sure. It’s roast beef.”

“Cheers,” he said as Natasha offered the man the sandwich. He’d offered to pay her some money, but she politely declined.

Natasha sat up a little straighter in her seat and gathered up some of her things in hopes of further distracting her now less-wondering mind. She was ahead in the editing process of her most recent manuscript and chose to review her last few pages of what she had written down. This welcome distraction allowed her to melt back into reality. She began to take in the sights, sounds and smells of the train as if she had just gotten on it for the first time.

Taking a sip of her coffee, which was now cool, she packed up the remnants of her salad and sandwich wrapper. The pair of Pumpkin Pasties sat in their unopened wrapper and she looked down upon them. Natasha had a sudden urge to offer them to the man who was obviously hungry. He was pushing the last corner of the sandwich into his mouth and was chewing like a man who would have liked another, if one was made available.

Natasha felt a little tingle in her body when she touched the wrapper and a small voice in her head said that she should keep them for herself. She swept them into her purse and continued to look at the newly developing countryside.

Fields and mountains were being replaced with the cultivated farmlands and farmhouses. The solitary houses that were distantly sparse became small clusters, then taller ones, then buildings.

Natasha saw easy country living that reminded her of the Amish. She saw some cars and trucks that looked very dated as well as horse drawn carriages laden with what looked like produce and small livestock.

The train was beginning to slow down still further and a ping on the overhead speaker informed the travelers that they were arriving early and to safely check all storage bins for shifting luggage.

Natasha traveled light, one small hold all for her clothes (she was a notoriously efficient packer), her purse and a sturdy tote with all her work was all she brought with her. In one of the final emails she’d exchanged with Kristen, she had been told her not to worry about packing for extreme weather changes at this time of year.

The train chugged onto a platform and there was small gathering of people. Natasha took in their eager faces, no doubt collecting families or friends who, like her, were here vacationing or returning home.

She stood up, dusting a few crumbs off her clothes and adjusted her travel jacket which hung slightly snug across her middle. She gathered her belongings and joined the cue in the aisles who were making ready to depart the train.

Natasha’s life primarily consisted of her work, light exercise and more work. And the occasional boyfriend. Her dedication to her writers, editing team and employers meant steady hours in front of a computer screen, hunched over until literally a bathroom break or hunger pangs washed over her.

During her first few years in the company, she was more active, not to mention younger. She could take advantage of her peppy metabolism by making relaxed food choices and dismissing physical activity entirely for weeks at a time.

Then, about six months ago, she got a shocking realization that she needed to change her ways.

One evening, the company was hosting a publishing gala of a new well-known author who was being added to their team as well as some mid-level promotions. To the rest of the staff it meant free booze, a chance to dress up and rub shoulders with some other notables who always seemed to find their way into these parties. City life just seemed to run like that.

Natasha had a plus-one, a man she’d met online and had met a few times and felt comfortable bringing with her to the event.

That morning, she’d laid out the green dress that she always wore, a strapless number with a tasteful bodice and detailed stitch work that, new, would have cost her a months’ apartment rent. Thank you, Thrifty Consignment App! She’d found the dress being sold on an app and paid a fraction of the price.

Natasha had been busy on that day and felt a glass of wine was in order. She poured herself a glass from the boxed wine she kept in her fridge and continued wrapping up the afternoon’s workday of phone calls, scattered emails, skipped spin class session, a second glass of wine and turning in a second draft of an edited manuscript. Satisfied with her work, she dragged herself to the bathroom for a shower, wine glass in hand.

Peeling off her overly large shirt and male boxer shorts left from a past boyfriend, Natasha turned on the showerhead, pulled out the hair tie of her top-knot, waited the prerequisite 30 seconds for the water to go from ice cold to volcano hot, back to a normal temperature (thanks terrible building plumbing!) and stepped inside the shower.

She had found that if she didn’t exercise and wasn’t overly active at work or home, that she could skip a day between showering. Not her favorite thing, but she was one of those fortunate people who didn’t smell badly if a shower was missed; and this habit was a definite timesaver. Thinking back to her evening ahead, she stepped under the water and felt the last two days of city life washing away. She lathered and scrubbed and raised an arm overhead, tipping her face out of the water to see more clearly.

Confirming her armpits needed gentle attention, she grabbed her fashionably amazing razor and set to work on underarms, legs and bikini area.

Refreshed, she put her hair up and grabbed a second towel, draping it across her body. A freshly laundered towel was simply the best. She was dry in seconds.

Tip-toing across her bedroom, she opened the drawer and selected her nicest strapless bra and matching bottoms. Nothing that showed lines. She slid them on like a second skin and set to work on her makeup and flicked on her favorite playlist from her iPhone.

Checking she still had time, she did her hair, made a light snack and answered a few texts from co-workers who would be attending the party as well as her male plus-one.

going to be a bitching party, whose ready to get *hit-faced?” came one of the many group texts.

hope we get rooftop access like last time!” came another.

Smiling, she thumbed through a few more lines, commenting here and there; always careful to acknowledge, but never commit to any documented wrong-doing. Promotions came scarcely at this job, after all.

She had about 30 minutes before having to catch a cab to meet her date. Natasha grabbed the dress which was hanging of the back of her closet door. Taking it out of it’s drycleaning bag, she smoothed it out feeling the coolness of the silky-smooth fabric.

Natasha slid the zip down and slid herself inside. She hitched it up and reached around to the clasp just below her armpit to secure the two ends and was about a half-inch short. She tried again, and again.

She let out a light huff and felt her bangs flutter. She decided on swapping bras, this time selecting a slimmer, though less comfortable one. After it’s failure, she tried no bra at all.

F**k, f***ck,” she said to the room at large, searching for her spanks. She looked high and low through drawers and under folded clothes, the top of her dress falling down making Natasha resemble a half-peeled banana. Spanks, those magical bodice-hugging underclothes that packs a woman into the tightest of spaces. But she’d loaned them out to another friend just the other day and had no back up.

Natasha thought that if she forwent the clasp, she could at least get the zipper to hold. It was one of those expensive dresses where the zipper held fast like an industrial magnet. The upper clasp was mostly for show, anyway.

Looking at her phone, she was running short on time. Refusing to panic, she took a deep breath in, let out as much air as she could and tugged at the zip. She got a third of the way up. Trying again, half-way. The final time she pulled, she felt she heard ripping and stopped. The dress was too small.

What the hell, man!” she cried out to the room.

The empty room sneered back, silent but she felt, judgingly.

She stepped out the of the dress, wanting to throw it, but deciding it was an expensive risk if she did any more damage to it.

She stood in her full-length mirror searching for answers.

A beautiful, though flustered set of rich brown eyes stared back. A perky nose complimented a now- slight frown that tapered to a feminine chin and a slender neck rounded out the remainder of her facial features. Her eyes scanned beyond the face and next took in athletic, though not broad shoulders followed by a small, but healthy bust. The coolness of the room had pin-pricked each nipple which was surrounded by a set of areolae that every man she’d ever been with found incredibly desirable. Her eyes moved laterally to the slightly fluffier sides of her torso and she felt her mouth frown. She pressed her arms to her sides and felt herself go soft where normally the inner portions of her arms felt muscle and rib. Eyes still travelling down, she saw wider hips which were digging into her underwear and at her middle, not a pooch, but a veritable ‘pot belly’.

Natasha had never been ‘abdominals ripped’, but she always had those two contour lines that you see in modelling magazines. How long had they been absent on her? Her eyes flicked towards her Peloton which was taking up current residence as her spare clothes rack. She felt it mock her beneath the green dress that now lay over it.

She turned side profile and saw the problem: she was carrying a food baby, several months along. She gave a gentle hop on the balls of her feet and her lower belly gave a little jiggle, confirming that it was truly a part of her and not some part of her imagination.

Turning front-profile again, she brought both hands to her sides and pinched and squeezed, feeling doughy love handles above her hips and squashing her middle together as if hoping her efforts would smooth everything back into place.

To confirm her suspicions, she kid-stomped to the bathroom to step on the scale. It was always a few pounds off and so she picked the part of her bathroom floor that was always kindest to her.

The scale rolled past the typical 127 and rested on a defeating 139.4.

Searching for something to blame, her eyes fell to the wine glass on the edge of the bathroom shelf.

“Well, I hope your happy,” she shouted.

The glass of wine replied by letting a droplet of condensation cascade down its side as if to say, ‘well, no one told you to drink me.

Natasha went to her closet and found another dress, a purple one which was not as shimmery, not as silk-smooth, but definitely roomier; and threw it over her head. It fit, but barely. She stood in the mirror and twirled to see how she looked in different angles of light. The dress without any defining tailoring hung flat across her torso, making her swollen abdomen the focal point.

“Damn,” she huffed, searching—and finding— a broad, shimmering belt that shared the spotlight.

Natasha looked at herself in the mirror, smirked sideways in triumph and walked back into the bathroom. She grabbed the wine, slid the scale back into place with a toe and drained the glass.

She toasted herself in the mirror, applied her favorite crimson lipstick, blotted herself with a tissue and gathered her purse and shoes, determined that, even though she was looking her second-best; that she was going to have a first-class evening.
 
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Chapter 4

A chime from the overhead speaker informed the passengers of their arrival and Natasha felt the familiar jostle of too-eager people wanting to enjoy fresh air and more open spaces.

After a few ‘excuse me’s,’ and ‘pardon’s’, Natasha excused herself from the train and stepped onto the platform. Exiting the train, she felt like she passed through a thick wall of air, which shimmered and then returned to normal. She shook her head and walked a few paces from the hustle and bustle and laid down her things and surveyed.

She shielded her eyes from all the reflective surfaces of the platform and surrounding buildings.

“Hey there, stranger,” came a familiar voice from in front of her.

Her childhood friend and best friend stepped in view, cutting through the sunlit glare and was beaming. Natasha felt her face crack into a wide smile to match and the two women embraced, rocking each other from foot to foot.

“You look refreshed for a woman whose just been on a train for 10 hours,” said Kristen with a smirk.

Natasha rolled her eyes. “Well, you did tell me to expect the unexpected on this trip and so far, I have not been disappointed. Gosh, it’s so great to see you!”

The two embraced again then Natasha held her friend at arm’s length, admiring.

“Same old Krissy, ever the ageless wonder.”

Kristen struck a pose, legs akimbo and hands on hips, drinking in the compliment and tossed her ash brown hair back as if it had been blown back by wind. She was sporting a light jacket, white camisole, tan pants and black riding boots.

Natasha took note that her friend literally looked the same as she had in college. Tall at 5’10’’, lithe and fit. A healthy bust, strong arms and legs and just the hint of laugh lines at the corners of her eyes. She had cute freckles on her cheeks that happened when she caught just the right amount of summer sun and she had warm, inviting honey-brown eyes.

“Take a photo, it will last longer,” said Kristen, helping Natasha with her bags and the two women departed the platform.

“I’m sorry—it’s just so great seeing you and you look like you’ve stepped out of a time machine. You’ll have to tell me your secret.” Natasha elbowed her friend in the side and noted toned muscle.

“Just water, some veggies and some good old-fashioned Pilates,” she said with a wink. Gesturing, Kristen pointed to the departing area and Natasha followed, rolling her eyes mockingly and bringing out a joyful laugh out of Kristen.

Natasha stopped for a second and then had a sudden urge to hop on one foot while patting her ear, like a swimmer whose come out of the pool with water lodged in their ear, “Ugh, how long does the spell take to lift again?”

“You’ll not have to wait more than a few minutes.” Kristen replied, as if this was normal conversation.

Natasha felt an invisible weight drop out of her ear and everything became clear. She was now looking at the platform through different eyes, a witch’s eyes.

She saw all sorts of peculiar travelers dressed in what she imagined were witch and wizard robes, pets with additional appendages or heads and all sorts of magical wonderment from floating luggage to platforms that were self-cleaning.

“Tell me what you see now,” said Kristen, point a few feet away from them.

Natasha’s eyes were drawn to a severe-looking woman with a weathered witches’ hat caring after a pet that had extra-large features, an extra tail and exaggerated body proportions. She blatantly saw a woman pull out what could only be a magic wand and point it at her defecating pet’s mess and said, ‘disappearus fecus materis’. The animal’s mess vanished into thin air restoring the ground to it’s previous un-besmirched state.

“Umm, a strange dog taking a crap which disappeared?” said Natasha.

“Well, now we know that the statue of magical secrecy has been temporarily lifted for you on your trip. Do you remember standing on the platform as you left the train? The air felt thick for a second? That’s the magical charm.”

“I do, I even said good-bye to the man who sat next to me who ate one of my sandwiches. Turns out he looked part lobster.” Said Natasha, remembering that as she passed off the train that the world she knew began to bend towards the wizarding one she was only limitedly familiar with.

“The statute of magical secrecy acts like a portal between out worlds. It’s an advanced charm spell that keeps the No-Wa-Kah’s from discovering that magic even exists.

Natasha frowned for a second, “No-Wa-Kah’s…non-wizarding carriers!” she said as if in class answering a question. Kristen gave a smile.

“So…does that mean I get to do all sorts of wizardy and wandry like you do?” said Natasha already knowing the answer, but nudging her friend conspiratorially in the ribs.

“Oh, you know it doesn’t work like that, ‘Tasha.”



+++++



Back home, one summer after they had graduated from college, Kristen took Natasha to a field they had played in frequently as youths.

“I have something I want to share with you,” Kristen had prompted. “Remember when I went to boarding school all those years ago?”

“Yeah?” said Natasha.

“Well, Ah—fuck. I’m a witch.”

“Wait, what!?” said Natasha, laughing a little at the blunt absurdity of the statement.

“Ah, I’m no good at explaining—Explainso!.” Kristen had procured from the back pocket of her jeans a stick of wood that was ornate in every way and very old-looking. She waved it across the space between them and tapped it right between Natasha’s eyes.

Natasha felt her body go rigid and then felt her eyes close. Everything went temporarily dark and then, in the distance she saw a pinpoint of light that drew closer like a train exiting a tunnel.

She heard a voice she did not recognize begin to narrate:

“Dear Non-Wand-Carrier, or ‘no-wah-kah’, you are receiving this message in the presence of a qualified witch or wizard who has placed their utmost trust in your ability to keep strictest secret that magic is real. We, the magical brethren do not interfere with our magical prowess in the ways of the world. Your world. We exist in a parallel world in harmony…”

Natasha could feel thousands of years of magical understanding and terminology enter her brain at warp speed.

“You have now received all of our history, though you do not have the ability to practice the noble craft of magic. In the presence of a qualified witch or wizard, or by passing into our world though appointed portals, these memories will return as if you’ve never forgotten them, like recalling a second though less-practiced foreign language.”

Kristen, through the usage of this spell was conveying everything she knew about her acceptance to ‘Wizard School’ when she was young, the fact that she was now a qualitied witch living among the no-wa-kah’s and that her time at college was helping her further magic and non-magic relations.

The spell lifted and Natasha felt to her knees softly, her head spinning.

“Ugh, I think I’m going to hurl.”

Kristen bent low and patted her friend soothingly on the back, muttering something non-English and making small circles that rapidly subsided the dizziness.

“Hey, that was a soothing spell, wasn’t it?” said Natasha.

Kristen nodded with a weak smile. She proceeded to explain to Natasha who had complete understanding that whenever she was in the presence of another witch or wizard that she would fully comprehend speech. Further, whenever she was in their magical presence, anything that would normally be unexplainable to the mind of a no-wa-kah would make complete and utter sense to her.

“Cool,” said Natasha with a grin, “My best friend is a witch!” She knew she wanted Kristen to demonstrate all sorts of cool witchcraft that instant but knew from that magical voice that the magical world only used magic when applicable, else they behaved like normal non-magical people.

Natasha sidled up to Kristen and made a little sad puppy dog face, gesturing with her eyes from Kristen to the wand.

“Oh…I know you’ll never let it go. Here:” Kristen raised her hand, wand at the ready and muttered, “igneous levitator…”

A small rock wiggled, then rose into the air as if this was the most normal thing in the world. Natasha did not scream or run. She was simply in awe of magic

++++++

Back on the platform, the two women collected Natasha’s things and made to head towards the local village. Natasha’s luggage became surprisingly light and she turned to Kristen who was just stowing her want beneath her clothes.

“Hey, did you…?”

“I haven’t the faintiest idea what you’re referring to.” Chided Kristen.

Natasha smiled and nudged her friend again.

“It’s noon, have you eaten yet?” said Kristen.

“I had a little something on the train, but I’ll get a tea.” Natasha’s stomach growled.

“Liar. You’re still peckish. Don’t worry, I have a place I know you’ll like,” said Kristen.

Kristen linked arms with Natasha and the pair strode away into the town, luggage considerably lighter and hearts full of a week’s worth of adventure.
 
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Chapter 5

The two women entered the village adjacent to the train station, Hogsbottom.

Kristen looked over at Natasha, who sniggered and pointed unnecessarily at the village sign.

“…really?” Kristen said, eyebrows raised.

“Hey, c’mon. Pig’s a** is what they call themselves?”, said Natasha who wiped her eyes from laughter.

“It’s an old name. This town is—” began Kristen.

“Yes, yes, I know. Hogsbottom was founded nearly 400 years ago around the same time as your school, Chogwards. My magic brain just kicked in and told me so.” Said Natasha, tapping the side of her temple.

“It’s going to be so weird—yet refreshing—getting used to you knowing all our magic terminology and customs.” Kristen said as she led them through some main and then side streets of the little village.

“No kidding. Imaging thinking you are going to have to play interpreter for me while I am on vacation, only to learn that I know the ‘language’ just as good as you do.”

The two women passed many shops and Natasha would stop every few stores and make a comment.

“Ooh, a store that sells books! Any magic erotica in there?” she said, elbowing Kristen in the ribs.

Kristen blushed slightly and said that there might be, and the pair moved lazily on, luggage hovering behind them.

They turned a corner and on either side of the street they observed a shop that sold antique looking tea sets and another one that sold gardening supplies.

“Ooh, I must get you a welcoming plant,” said Kristen, who steered the pair of them across the street and into the shop. Natasha’s luggage hovered obediently outside the store and she heard Kristen mutter the spell, “secureo!” so that the luggage would be safe as houses while the perused the shop. Natasha held open the door and the pair dashed inside.

Like she expected, Natasha knew that the tiny shop window was a front and that inside, the building was expansive. A not-unpleasant smell of earth and sunshine hit her nostrils. Her eyes scanned and she saw rows and rows of greenery that were laid out before her. She took in every color of the rainbow that came from beautiful plants and flowers – many she’d never seen before.

“Wow, the dragon-delias are coming in beautifully,” said Natasha as she walked past a potted plan whose red-orange petals emitted faint smoke.

She and Kristen separated and took in everything from enchanted peonies, whose blooms were 4 times larger than those Natasha had seen back home, to rare Zebra orchids.

“I wonder what you use this for?” said Natasha, who held a gardening tool.

“Hmm?” said Kristen, who was now looking at purple-tined cactus.

“Is this to show plants a good time?” Natasha said again holding the tool. It looked like a medieval dildo with abnormally round head that emitted a faint humming sound. Natasha emphasized the point by stroking the shaft suggestively and pulled a face of feigned ecstasy that made Kristen blush a little.

“Shh, put that back. You know its not for things like that. Let’s keep exploring.” She said, although not fully able to keep the humor out of her voice.

The women separated aisles, agreeing to cover more searching this way. After a few minutes, Natasha heard her name being called from what sounded like the far back of the shop. She walked passed vined plants, spikey ones, ones that reached out for you and ones that smelled like fresh baked cookies.

“Ooh, ‘Tasha, look at this one.” Kristen was bent low and was pointing to a shelf.

Here, Natasha bent low, too and observed the most beautiful flower she had ever seen. The singular plant in the pot was striking. The plant itself shimmered white-gold but also emitted a faint yellow glow, like an aura. Just looking at it make her feel immensely happy and calm. Searching her magical brain, she could not come up with a name for this exquisite plant.

“I see that you ladies have fine taste,” came a voice from behind them.

A woman who looked like the proprietor of the shop came into view, pushing her glasses back up her nose, her fingernails caked in dirt.

“I was walking past and these literally caught my eye and I had to look more closely,” said Kristen, slightly breathless.

“That’s the charm of these flowers, they’re Everblooms and this one in particular is a crossbreed of an Italian Cassanovis Amouris and a French Je T’aime a la foile. We call it Amore Infinito follemente. They are a new breed of flower, we’ve just grown the first batch this season.” Said the shopkeeper.

“I love you, infinitely, madly…” said Natasha more to the plant than she meant to say aloud.

“That’s it,” said the shopkeeper, now eyeing Natasha with more praise. “It’s not too often we see a No-Wa-Kah like yourself who knows more about magic and nomenclature than we lot do.”

Kristen rolled her eyes, “Oh, this one doesn’t need any more of an ego-inflation. She’s got plenty for the two of us.”

They all laughed and Kristen made to pick one up, “It’s lovely, I’ll just get the one.” But the potted flower did not move. It felt like it was magically charmed to the spot.

The shopkeeper smiled and put her hands on her soil-covered hips. “You cannot take one without its twin. These are amorous plants. They are sold in pairs.”

Natasha put a hand on Kristen’s confused shoulder, “These plants are Harmony Flowers. They are sold in pairs and the strength of bond between the Giver and the Receiver of these plants determines the fullness and robustness of the plant. Do I have that right? God, I love this magical memory thing!

“She’s got the measure of it, this one. You sure you don’t have any magical ancestry?” Added the shopkeeper.

Natasha shook her head and shrugged, “None I am aware of. I just have a keen mind, I guess.”

“See to it that it stays sharp, young one.” The shopkeeper said.

“So, how do we choose?” said Kristen, feeling a little left out of the conversation.

“It’s easy. You just go along the row of flowers and the one that nods to you, is the one for you. Then your friend here does the same. After that, we will see if the plants dance.” The shopkeeper said this matter of factly.

Kristen inhaled and then sighed, “Okay, here goes…”

She bent over the plants, her hands outstretched. Comically, the plants that seemed disinterested seemed to fold their leaves across their stems like a person crossing their arms. Natasha could have sworn she heard some of them make noises of denial, ‘hmmph!

Finally, one plant opened her leaves like one does to embrace a loved one, and the plant seemed to nod in agreement. Kristen gently picked up the plant and it came off the shelf easily. It shone a little extra brightly when she brought it close to her.

“I think this one is mine, I can feel it.” She said.

Natasha did the same, ushered on by the shopkeeper and immediately the first plant she came to seemed to lean forward in earnestness, its roots looking like they were parting company with the soil.

“Woah, this one seems to dig my vibe. Easy there, little fella.” She said, picking up the plant before it literally leapt out of its nutrient-rich home.

“That’s the first bit. Now for the dance. Here, you two, like this,” said the shopkeeper nudging the women in place so that each faced the other. She then motioned for them to hold their arms outstretched so that each planted flower was nearly touching, pot-to-pot.

They stood there for a full minute. Nothing happened.

“Erm,” said Kristen searching the wizened face of the shopkeeper.

“Give it a moment,” she said kindly.

Natasha felt the pot in her hands suddenly get a little heavy and then warm like she’d stepped into a warm bath. She felt heat radiate from the plant up her arms, into her face, down her legs and into her core. She felt like she was being held by a lover. Gentle but assured. She gently squeezed her legs together and tipped her head to side and gently bit her lower lip. Had a silent moan escaped her lips? In the same instant the warmth entered her, it was siphoned away and she was left with only the happy memory of it.

Looking down at her plant, she saw that it was shining vibrantly and was unmistakably dancing with the air between it and Kristen’s potted flower. She leaned forward and could see that Kristen had experienced that similar feeling of warmth and assuredness. Her own plant dancing to a similar rhythm.

She stepped still closer now so that the rims of the pots now touched. Each plant stretched out and everyone watched, transfixed as the plants jostled and swayed moving in rhythm to a beat none of them could hear. The dance moves looked familiar to Natasha, and she suddenly recognized that her plant was dancing just like she used to back in college. She was also aware that Kristen’s plant, although trying its best, was jittering a little out of time and rhythm—just like Kristen used to.

“Woah, de ja vu,” said Natasha with a smile.

“Ditto! They look like us boogying on the dance floor from our college days.” Said Kristen, still watching.

The flowers did their final choreography and then parted and stood still once more like a flower should, albeit the fact that they were now glowing like 1,000 watt lightbulbs.

“Dang,” said Natasha, “my plant looked good!” she mimed a waggle of her hips, and her plant mimicked her.

“We are going to have fun with these.” She said and Kristen beamed.

“That’s the most robust pair I have ever sold!” said the shopkeeper who walked them to the front of the store, ready to make payment.

“I’ve got these,” said Kristen who reached into her purse and paid with the customary wizarding money.

The shopkeeper continued muttering appraisal of their plants as she packed them up in travel-worthy containers and bid them a very good day.



Back out in the fresh air, they uncharmed Natasha’s luggage and carried their plants a few more blocks as they headed their way to the luncheon spot Kristen had selected for them.

“Hey, back in there, did you feel anything…peculiar?” asked Kristen, still looking ahead.

“Peculiar, how?” replied Natasha.

Kristen worried her lip and frowned slightly, “I dunno. When I held my plant, I felt my body go all warm and tingly…” she looked sidelong at Natasha for a reaction.

“Well, I felt the warmth and the tingles all the way down to my lady-bits, if that’s what you’re asking.” She said with a comical eyebrow raised.

Kristen snorted with laughter, “Tasha! We’re in the street!”

Natasha expanded her arms as if to embrace the road and beamed, “Well, I did! What do you want from me?”

Kristen laughed again and made hushing noises. Natasha was now making small gyrating motions with her hip that looked as if she was bumping and grinding to the latest RnB song. A few witches and wizards took note, curious of the commotion.

“Hey. Hey, we are here.” Said Kristen.

Natasha, who was still dancing, did an impressive Electric Slide, complete with hand flare and 1-2-step (packaged flower still in hand) before she looked up to see where Kristen had led them.

It read: The Three Cauldrons

Kristen did the security charm on Natasha’s luggage once again as well as carefully stowed their packaged flowers. She was amused to notice that both her and Natasha’s flowers were doing rooted versions of bumping and grinding as well as electric slides.

“I hope the food is good in there. All this walking and fabulous dancing has made me a little hungry,” said Natasha patting what felt like a now-hollow stomach.

“You’ll find something you like,” said Kristen with a wink.

Natasha felt her stomach gurgle, almost uncoiling itself and she suddenly felt unconsciously very, very hungry.
 

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