The round trip from Medford to Boston was eight and half dollars, thanks to a student discount with the national public portkey service. Another three dollars for portkey sickness medication, just in case, because she was by now six months humbler to risk travelling without. The trip in had fortunately not made her ill, but Zi Shang knew better than to speak so soon. She may yet need the pill that she had hastily purchased that morning from the nearest Magic Neep to the residence hall.
Oh, before she forgot, two dollars and three quarters for the bottled iced tea she unsuccessfully resisted whilst waiting for the portkey.
The foreign witch had heard before her move all about how different these parts were in comparison to the rest of the world. Many of her former colleagues at Beauxbâtons had at least something they absolutely knew was true, either about the country itself or the people in it. Most of these 'it is known's' were misguided, as it turned out, but some had been valuable insights during her first days in the States.
Nobody had told her that the unsweetened iced tea here tasted just like from home, or that chow mein would be the most frequent item to show up on the rotating menu in the mess hall. In a way, she was closer to her abandoned home than she had ever been since leaving.
The first of the YongDing Hakka settlement to attend university, and on a full scholarship from the Wizarding Expedition Society itself. If she dared, she might wonder if her father may be proud.
But she could probably afford a coffee today. She would need to be alert to meet this potential client who had owled her after coming across the advertisement she'd posted in the local magical newspaper. Zi Shang peeled her gaze from the overhead menu, her mouth bowing in an apologetic smile at the increasingly impatient barista waiting expectantly for her order.
"A hot latte, thank you." Maybe she would spoil herself, just a little. How many times did she take the time to come into Boston?
"With hazelnut syrup, please."
The young woman carefully navigated between the tables with her satchel and the steaming cup on a pristine, ceramic saucer. She shrugged out of her coat and draped it over the back of the chair, briefly checking her reflection in the window to make sure that the powder blue ribbon that would identify her to the person she was meeting still sat neatly intact against her ebony tresses. She pulled out a book she'd borrowed from the institute library for the wait.