Regulus Arcturus Black was no stranger to waking up in strangers’ flats. He’d consider himself something of an expert on it, really. Had it down to a science-- all he had to do was stay away from the windows, find his clothes, and get out of there before the paparazzi and/or his agent found out about it (he had no doubt that Lucinda absolutely would kill him if there was another set of semi-nude photos of him in the next day’s Daily Mail).
But none of that applied here. Because for once in his life, he’s wearing his clothes. Or, well, most of them. His suit jacket’s gone off to god knows where and his tie’s been loosened to the point where it won’t strangle him, but his shirt’s even fully buttoned.
This is terrible. He’s got a reputation to uphold. So he carefully extracts himself from the grasp of-- whoever it was, he can’t remember a name but he’s always had a thing for blond and American-- and sneaks off to the balcony to panic-call Lucinda.
She starts speaking before he even gets a chance to explain the situation, frustration clear in her voice. “You had three interviews left!”
And, yeah, he’s notorious for skipping out on those. Never liked strangers asking questions about his personal life. So he just waves his hand dismissively before remembering she can’t see that. “What a shame.”
There’s silence on the line for a full minute-- he thinks that if looks can kill, he’d be dead even with the distance. “Blond and American doesn’t make the world stop turning, Black!”
Blatant lies; blond and American is why the world turns. So he whines, resting his head against the railing. “If it makes you feel better, I think this blond American has press credentials?”
The way Lucinda practically growls at him makes him think that it doesn’t make her feel better.
These parties are all the same, really. Regulus has been too busy working to manage to get to one in ages-- filming back to back for two projects didn’t leave much time for anything else, but the media interest had been heavy since the cast for the indie flick he’d been guilt-tripped into starring in had been announced and there was no way to avoid the media forever. They were too excited at the drama of having Regulus and Narcissa Black in a movie together-- didn’t everyone remember the original Disney Channel show? Didn’t everyone remember the very public family feud? If not, here’s fifteen slideshows of every detail!
But he thinks he’s handling the event well-- posing with Cissa, looking elegant and refined and expensive and every bit the picture of the ‘child stars who hadn’t gone insane’. Debatable, in his opinion, but they’re both gorgeous. His phone’s blowing up with notifications from the selfie they’d taken before they even entered the event, so that’s got to stay off.
Reg tries to head straight for the champagne once he’s inside, but he’s intercepted by an impeccably dressed Lucinda. Guiding him away from that table and towards reporter after reporter. He actually goes as far as to tell one of them he’s answered the same question fifteen times already, but Lucinda makes some deal to make sure that stays off the record.
Eventually he escapes her clutches and, predictably, heads straight back towards the champagne table. Where he lays eyes on the most gorgeous man he’s seen all night. Really, everyone should have seen this coming.
“Regulus Black?” The man asks, sounding suitably impressed but at the same time not starstruck. And maybe Reg is used to attention, but this dude’s got perfect hair and a perfect smile and honestly he’d probably die right then and there if the man asked him to.
“At your service.” Regulus smiles-- a genuine smile, not the trained fake one everyone else has been getting all night. God, he wants to run his hands through that perfect blond hair.
But then everything goes sideways. Because instead of handing him a glass of champagne and carrying him into the sunset, Blond and American says the worst possible thing. “Mind if I ask a few questions?”
Regulus is a professional, though. He might deflate a little, it takes some effort not to look visibly disappointed, but he keeps on smiling. “Of course. What paper are you with, Mr..?”
“Gilderoy Lockheart.” The man seems oblivious, just smiles at him again, and yeah-- he would absolutely jump off a cliff for that smile. A couple questions are totally doable. “And I’m not with a paper, usually, just doing a favor for a friend.”
“Apparently he’s an author,” Reg explains, rubbing at his temple. The sun’s starting to rise and he’s reminded about how much light is not his friend. “And he kept handing me champagne-- there are some big gaps in my memory, I don’t even know where to start for damage control.”
“You’ve never seen a Disney Movie?” Gil asks, hand over his mouth. They’ve long since gotten off track, far away from the usual ‘what’s it like working with Narcissa?’ and ‘would you ever act in one of Sirius’s movies?’, and Reg doesn’t think he’s ever been more comfortable in an interview before. “You were on Disney Channel!”
“I never even saw the show I was on, honestly.” He has to remind himself that all of this is on record, he can’t just spill his soul, but Lucinda would probably be pleased with him for actually answering questions for once in his life. “My parents were a bit strict-- I was allowed to be on TV, but I wasn’t ever allowed to watch TV.”
“And no one ever showed them to you after?” Gil’s sitting so close to him, one hand across Reg’s shoulders, and this doesn’t seem like professional behavior. But Reg’s leaning against him, head resting on his shoulder, and it’s clear he’s not going to protest.
Reg shakes his head, taking a sip of his champagne. “Aren’t those movies for kids, anyways?”
“Please tell me you didn’t fuck a reporter with your show playing in the background.” Lucinda seems resigned to seeing that as the next day’s headline-- all of the Blacks were legendary for their narcissism, there’s certainly been worse secrets revealed.
“Gross!” Regulus whines, hurt that she would think so low of him. “I was, like, 15 on that show!” A whole host of ethical issues along with the fact that he’d literally been a child-- the answer might be different if she’d asked about something he’d filmed in the last five years, but he wouldn’t sink that low.
Regulus is used to a whole lot of excuses people use to get him out of events and into hotel rooms-- he doesn’t even know why they bother, they could just straight up say what they wanted and he’d honestly be more likely to go with them. Not that it’s hard to get him alone anyways.
So he’s honestly quite surprised when Gil turns on the TV and actually puts on a movie. This isn’t part of the script. It’s something about lions and he decides it’s absolutely got to be turned off the instant Gil actually makes a move. But he doesn’t. He just pulls him close, covers both of them with the blanket, and sushes Reg when he tries to ask what’s up with this strangeness.
Reg can’t remember the last time someone actually seemed interested in him as a person, instead of as a story to tell their friends or as a pretty face. He knows he signed onto this life, but Gil makes him forget about that fact.
“Don’t get attached,” Lucinda warns him, and Regulus knows she’s right. It was a nice moment, but he knows a nice moment won’t stop it from being tomorrow’s headline, complete with messy-looking ‘exclusive’ selfies. It’s something that’s happened to him before.
“About that…” But he hears the door opening behind him, a familiar voice mumbling a hung-over good morning, and he just hangs up the phone. He pays Lucinda enough that she can deal with it. It’s not exactly the first time he’s caused stupid shit.
“How many more of those movies are there?”