Mal was on her third beer and they'd both been brought over by another waitress. She couldn't work out whether she wanted Aurora to bring them or not.
"No I'm not."
"For god's sake just... just go and talk to her."
"What? No." Mal glanced around; Aurora had been serving but had disappeared a few minutes ago.
"Mal... god forbid I encouraged something wrong but you two need to at least have a conversation. It's fine when it's like this, but if she acts as forward as that in front of other lecturers or students people will think-"
"-Yes I know." Mal sighed. "But she's gone now. Probably finished her shift or something."
"Or she could be having a dance break." Diaval snorted, looking over Mal's shoulder. Mal turned and looked around the edge of the seat.
Aurora was dancing, her body twisting slowly to the beat. There were a few people around her, mainly men, who seemed to be enjoying as she turned and rolled her hips. Mal gritted her teeth at their expressions.
"And you thought she was innocent." Diaval laughed. "She's putting your moves to shame."
Mal stood up, fists clenched. She took a deep breath and released her fingers. Then she headed through the crowd. Aurora saw her coming and grinned lazily at her. She reached out her hands, beckoning for Mal to join the dance. Mal scowled and gestured towards the door to the beer garden. Aurora rolled her eyes with the next roll of her hips, and the man behind her put his hands on her waist. Aurora immediately stepped away from him, just as Mal moved forward. She gave the man a glare and led Aurora through the crowd and outside.
"Professor Moore, what will Diaval think?" Aurora chuckled, biting her lip.
"Aur- Miss Rose, I'm aware that you are at work but perhaps you ought to be a little more... careful?" Mal frowned.
"They're regulars. Harmless."
"And what if they weren't harmless?"
"Why are you so worried? I was only dancing."
"That was not just dancing. I've seen that kind of dancing before... I've done that kind of dancing before."
"Oh yeah?" Aurora grinned. "Show me."
"No." Mal scowled.
"Come on. I won't tell anyone that you can have fun. They'll still think you're the dragon." Aurora smiled, and she looked a little more like herself. Mal relented a little and gave her a small smile.
"I'm not dancing for you Rory."
"Dance with me then." Aurora took a step forwards.
"I'm your teacher." Mal muttered.
"So?" Aurora frowned. "Why does that mean two friends can't dance."
Oh. Yes. Of course. Stupid stupid Mal. Get your head out of your-
"You can't be that forward with me around University." Mal sighed, saying what she knew Diaval wanted her to say.
"Asking me to dance, drinking my beers etc." Mal said.
"I highly doubt there'll be chance for either of those things at Uni." Aurora giggled.
"You know what I mean." Mal chuckled.
"All I know is that my break is almost up and you have made me spend most of it talking about what other people will think and rules. I thought you were more fun than that Queenie." She giggled.
"Are you drunk?" Mal asked.
"No." Aurora frowned. "No I'm just enjoying having a night away from... everything."
Mal frowned. She hoped that everything was alright at home. She was worried that Stephan's attitude worsened behind closed doors.
"Is everything alright Rory?" Mal asked. "At home I mean."
Aurora opened her mouth as though she was going to answer and then bit her lip. Her eyes looked like they would well up with tears but nothing spilled over.
"Everything's fine Professor. I have to get back to work now. Let me know if you need another drink."
With that she turned on her heel and walked back in to the bar. Mal took a deep breath.
"I'm getting too old for this."