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Chapter 6: Keep Your Teammates Close, Keep Your Enemies Closer
“You stop tugging!”
“You stop pulling!”
“I ordered you first.”
“Like that’s even relevant.”
Oh great, my second walk of shame of the day. This public display of humiliation not only graced the Potions classroom, but also took on the rest of Hogwarts. It was a shocking display, both physically and vocally.
“Let’s just get to class on time.” He muttered, his jaw clenching tightly. Probably from being in the mere distance of me.
“I’d go faster if you’d stop trying to squish my fingers!”
His fingers clamped purposefully around mine, as if intentionally trying to piss me off even more. I gasped, and the heat continued to creep up my neck like a disease, infecting my body with a contagious effect.
He grinned as though he knew what was occurring in my body. Bloody idiot.
Bickering, we walked through the corridor, with astounded stares hitting us from every direction. No one could believe the sight they saw, and people fought for a sight of it.
What mongrels! I didn’t see what was so spectacular about the affair; two people who have hated each other since the moment they met suddenly holding hands. Why should that be twisting anyone’s panties?
“You’re heading the wrong direction.” I commented, seeing his figure steering to a sharp left when we were obviously supposed to be taking a right. Idiot.
“Thank you, Miss Navigator, but I think I know where I’m going.” He charged on like a wild stallion who refused to be tamed. Our arms, close together, nearly dragged me in what direction he headed towards, as if I were a leashed puppy of some sorts.
“Obviously not,” I stubbornly tried to plant my feet firmly to the ground, but he ended up dragging me still. When did he get so flippin strong? “If you want to be late for DADA, by all means charge like a rampant—”
“My point exactly, genius,” his tone dark and surly, just like his attitude. “The period right now, it’s Study Hall.”
My face scrunched up. I frantically searched inside my spinning head for a mental schedule of my daily classes and tried to prove him wrong. To my utter disappointment, he was right. DADA was the period after. Damn it.
“Yeah, I thought so.” He smirked rather triumphantly, then continued on dragging me with uncomfortable force. I think he enjoys dragging me around like I’m his bitch.
“Hey, I’m not a dead carcass you can just yank around.” I retorted disdainfully, wishing at the moment that I could just chop of Samuels’s arm and be done with it. Better me than him.
“Honestly, can you just shut up and cope?” He sent a derisive glance in my direction. Did he honestly think I couldn’t “cope”?! I can “cope”! I’ll show him. “And stop whining.”
“I’m not whining.” I grumbled testily.
“Oh yes you—”
“Will you two shut up!” a large portrait of a man in a bathtub shouted, his bubbles overflowing out of the tub. He was positioned on the wall to our right, and was illuminated only by the dim torchlight hanging from the wall. The fact that scared me was that the man-painting was only covered by a tiny bathtub and bubbles; a truly awkward sight for an already awkward situation. “Goodness, it’s like listening to an old married couple. Are you two by any chance dating?
A look of sheer horror reflected upon my face. “Like I’d ever date that.”
“Aw, love you too, honey.” He sneered with sarcastic mockery, although the words frightened me. Oh great, there goes my heart again, pounding like the damn rain as it hits the ground. It’s called sarcasm, you thumping organ!
“Oh, a lovers’ quarrel. I know the ways.” The man in the tub said with a reminiscent smile, his entire unmentionables covered (thank Merlin) by an assemblage of artfully drawn bubbles. Then, his eyes glanced down with eagerness. “And look! You two are even holding hands!”
I so desperately wanted to scream “DRY UP YOU OL’ FART!”, but I restrained it. It was only just a painting. Maybe later tonight I could set it on fire…nah just kidding (?).
“Precious.” Bubbles continued with a proud nod in Samuels’ direction. “Don’t you ever let her go lad, she’s a looker, this one.”
Wait, did a painting just hit on me? God save us all.
I looked up at Samuels, only to see that he was pensively staring down at me. “It’s not like I could ever let her go.” He said. “We’re stuck together.”
There was softness in his words that I could not name, but Bubbles (the painting’s name…what? Fat-Man-Lounging-In-Tub was my second choice) just laughed it up quite boisterously. “Well, that’s good. All the more convenient! Bahaha!”
“Let’s go.” I pleaded, but Samuels was already dragging me right as I said the words. I didn’t think I could stand anymore of Bubble’s ‘love advice’. If he got anymore enthusiastic, I’m afraid the bubbles would all pop. Ughh.
I stared up to Samuels’ face and saw a very unreadable expression, one character trait that irked me to no end. It made him all the more mysterious, and I hated wanting to know what was going on in his head.
“Find a cozy, little broom cupboard, you young ones!” Bubbles shouted at us, officially titling him the creepiest painting in all of Hogwarts. Samuels quickened his pace to get us away from the painting as much as possible.
As we were walking, an awkward silence hung in the air. The only sounds I heard were our nervous footsteps and steady breathing. I suddenly found myself missing our bickering arguments rather than endure this tense little walk.
That stupid little painting. He had to make things awkward for our situation. And the fact that I was attached to Samuels didn’t alleviate it one bit. Now the words “couple” and “precious” would be revolving around my head that day, and it started to make me queasy.
I wondered if that’s what got Samuels so silent, as well.
Study Hall was every bit as silent that the walk was. As well as every bit as awkward.
People continued to gawk, amazed at us even being at such a distance without slapping each other silly. I hid our hands under the table, away from the public eye. Samuels had no problem with it. He just kept on squeezing.
“I didn’t know you were ambidextrous.”
Foolishly, I nearly jerked at the sound. Being in an unbearable silence for so long suddenly made me wish that it was back to just that. His unfathomable eyes looked curiously at my quill in my left hand, as if lefties were such an abnormal rarity in the world.
“Erh… yeah, I am,” Quick Emma, say something remotely civil back! “I didn’t know you...uh…could write?”
Oh fabulous. Remind me to never open my mouth again, because my social speaking skills are just a tad bit rusty.
Actually he might even find my utter stupidity charming and endearing….wait—what?!—I don’t care! No, I don’t care what he thinks…Lord already knows what a nutter he must think of me (which I don’t care about!).
He had a wry smile on his face as my cheeks flushed red. Almost as though he were….amused.
Funny, the only ‘a’ words I ever associated him with were ‘anger’, ‘arrogance’, and ‘ass-ness’ (well, I put a ‘jack’ in front, but you get the point).
I turned back to my parchment as if I just remembered an extremely intelligent thought that I just had to note down. That’s about as far as my “impressive” acting skills could extend. He didn’t argue; he just shook his head lightly and returned back to his own work.
After that, things only just got worse.
The teachers certainly thought quite a spectacle of it throughout the day. As we passed Dumbledore through the corridors, he gave us that freakish, twinkling smile that only seemed fit for pedophiles.
McGonagall didn’t even have the heart to call us out on PDA; she was far too shocked.
I guess Snape never gave the teachers the story of our magical little Potions incident, the bastard. Now every faculty member must think I’m ridiculously infatuated with Samuels. Good heavens…
As dreaded, Jill attacked us, and unleashed a fury of “Knew you two would get together” and “so meant to be” lines.
Gag me; if my punching arm wasn’t attached to Samuels at the moment, I would have punched her face right then and there.
The people who I wanted to avoid most were the rest of the teammates. The Chasers would never let me live it down. Oh bullocks, and Davies would have a real hoot with this one as well.
Careening down the halls swiftly, I tried to conceal myself (and Samuels) away from the paths of the Ravenclaw Quidditch team. No doubt Jeremy updated them on the Dobbs-Samuels escapades.
It was the last class of the day and I wanted to end on a good note…not one where I was harassed verbally by my obnoxious teammates. And after, we’d go to Snape, he’d give us the antidote, and that I wou—
“Hey!” someone called out from behind, causing me to jump a little. I swore it was one of those bloody Chasers, but the voice was much deeper. “Jace!”
We both stopped to glance behind at the figure who was nearing us. He had dark hair, with deep dark eyes to match. The young man was fairly tall and looked athletic, judging from his lean muscles. On his lips wore a secret smirk, one to drive anyone crazy. A good looking kid, in my opinion. Really good looking.
“Hey Jake,” Samuels greeted in a voice that sounded similar to “Jake’s”. I realized that they looked basically identical. “How’s it going, bro.”
I froze. Brothers? How did I not know that Samuels had a brother who looked freakishly similar to him? And did I just inadvertently call Samuels ‘good looking’?!
God save us all.
“The usual.” Jake replied, his smile increasing as his eyes traveled onto me and then to our hands. “Emma Dobbs, nice catch, Jace.”
A blush swept across my cheeks. Could at least one person not jump to the conclusion that we’re a couple?! God graced us all with an earth-shattering thing called common sense, use it once in a while people!
“I’m Jacob Samuels,” he stepped up, shaking my hand within his warm one. His eyes gazed over to me. “Who knew my brother would end up with Miss Dobbs herself.”
He seemed to know more about me than I did him, and that was just a tad bit sketchy. I didn’t know if I should have been frightened, or flattered. There was nothing really that appealing about me, unless you have a thing for crabby, athletic brunettes.
Samuels took a reflexive step in front of me, and I think his fingers clamped tighter—protectively?— around mine. “We’re not together.”
“You’re not?” Jacob dubiously asked, letting his eyes linger suspiciously on our hands. “Could’ve fooled me.”
With that, Jacob threw a wink at me, a nod at his brother, and then departed in the opposite direction. Samuels was squeezing my fingers so hard that I thought the blood would come bursting out of my fingernails.
He pulled my hand gruffly, yanking to go in his direction. Oh great, Samuels the Stallion is back.
Again, mind-shattering tension filled the air. I don’t think I had ever gone that long without insulting Samuels so close to me, and I think it was the same for him as well, vice versa.
“I didn’t know you had a brother.” I blurted out, breaking the tension as we walked through the halls to reach our class. He threw me a speculative glance, one filled with distrust.
“You never asked.” He replied curtly. “ Please, don’t tell me you want me to set you up with him.”
“I didn’t even—”
“Typical.” He ticked off, rather pissed. His eyes darkened.
Oh great, the bastard was back. My temper flared, “You know what, you just go on thinking whatever you think. All your thoughts are always irrational.”
“Oh, dry up Dobbs.” he retorted rather bitterly, his eyes looking frightfully intense. “And just a warning: If there’s one thing my brother doesn’t go for, it’s little chits like you.”
Even if I hated him with all passion in that moment, I couldn’t ignore the heat starting to ignite within every nerve of my body. It was so distracting I couldn’t even think of a witty comeback to throw back at him.
“Did I say I wanted to date your brother?! NO!” My words tumbled out of my mouth rather hurriedly.
Samuels swiveled around, his face scrunched up. Was he actually confused? Dear Merlin, this boy was bipolar. “Why?”
“Why? Just think Samuels!” You lousy barbarian! “Why would a girl want to date a guy who she never even knew existed on this planet before!? And as an added ew factor, he’s related to you. That’s self-explanatory.”
I kept this strange attitude with silence, but used all the pent up energy to just get to the next flipping class so that this could all get over with. The sooner this day was finished, the sooner Samuels would never have to be this close ever again. Hurrah!
Once again, silence filled the atmosphere.
Suddenly, I felt his eyes observing me, even though I pretended not to care. Oh great, he was about to say something. Can’t imagine anything remotely intelligent will come out.
“You’re lying.” He declared, as though he were the self-proclaimed king of Hogwarts.
Wow, what a day. He accuses me of wanting his brother, and then deems me a liar. Raise your hand if your presumptuous! “What are you talking about?”
“About not wanting to date me brother,” he muttered, his eyes doing that “mysterious” thing again. If he thought that was sexy, then he was wrongly mistaken. Very…wrongly…mistaken. Yeah. “Every girl wants to date him. He’s irresistible.”
“Excuse me?” Do I sense a ‘bro-mance’?
“I mean, it’s impossible for a girl not to like him.” He said very randomly, causing me to wonder what brought on this peculiar topic. Is it normal for him to pimp out his brother to other girls, or am I just special?
“Ok, so your brother is sex-pot. Hooray for him.” I flatly responded. “I should care why?”
“Why don’t you like him?” his voice seemed strained, and his strong fingers grasped onto mine. I didn’t even bother to argue. If I did, he’d probably rip my hand to shreds. “And I want the truth.”
Sure, I’ll tell you the truth when you stop acting like a psycho-Nazi.
“Because…” He’s an obnoxiously gorgeous man-child who has probably dated more girls than I’ve met in my life. “I don’t know. I guess he’s not my type.”
There. Good enough answer. Bravo, Emma Dobbs.
“Oh, okay,” he put in, so conversationally that it sounded strange. We went from discussing the bitchiness of one another to delving into boy issues.
Samuels is definitely losing his marbles. The classroom was just feet away from us, but Samuels was slowly halting. With curious eyes and a tense facial expression, he turned to me. “So, what is your type?”
“What?” He was surely making me uncomfortable, and I think he enjoyed it. Bloody masochist. I wasn’t in the mood to answer the question; I just wanted to get to the ruddy class in time. “Um, we uh, have to go…to…class.”
So, what is your type?
God, that question replayed in my mind on a loop. I didn’t even have the will to pay attention to the lesson, too confused over Samuels’ actions.
Even if I hated the demon spawn, I have to admit he’s a complex fellow.
Why he wants to know what my preferences of men are, I haven’t a clue. But let’s be honest people, what girl doesn’t want a tall, dark, and handsome knight? One who has a brain, who enjoys a challenge, and isn’t a complete nancy boy.
Yes, I want a wonder man. Sue me, but it’s not as though males as perfect as that exist in the world. How unfair.
“Miss Dobbs! Mr. Samuels!” a voice, sounding like a mutated munchkin, trilled in the room. Oh, just Flitwick. “This is class, you know. I would like to ask you both to please….let go of each other.”
The class erupted into snickers, and I instantly blushed. Why does it feel like I’m the only one embarrassed?
I faced Samuels, who was just staring down at our hands on the table. Not even a little flush! Damn, I knew testosterone cancelled out emotions.
“GET IT ON!” someone, presumably Jeremy, hollered in the midst of an already laughing class. Everyone then cackled in hysterics.
“Mr. Stretton! Contain yourself!” Flitwick squealed. I guess sexual references are too much for his naïve and virginal ears. “Class! CLASS!….”
I nearly started laughing as tiny little Flitwick attempted to silence the class, his small figure waddling angrily throughout class. That made the situation probably ten times as funnier.
It filled my heart to see my comrades laughing so joyfully….at the expense of my reputation, of course. By tomorrow, I think everyone will have branded me as Samuels’ Bitch. Great, just what I need.
Out of nowhere, I felt a gentle squeeze. Almost a squeeze of assurance.
Curious, I turned to Samuels to see that his face lifted to see mine. In the atmosphere of utter hysterical chaos, the two of us managed to just stay at ease. Holding hands, and staring at each other.
My mind cancelled out the psychotic laughter of my classmates, and instead intensified its focus on Samuels…how he was staring back at me with just as much scrutiny…and how his dark, unfathomable eyes managed to carry a spark of gold in them—
“You never did answer my question.” He retorted, his attention completely focused on me. And only me.
“What question?” Oh God, he was making me breathless again. And his eyes were doing that “mystifying” thing again. Ugh, and my mind was doing that “fuzzy, not-working” thing. Typical.
“Don’t be daft, Dobbs,” he murmured, a dark smirk appearing on his face. “I know you’ve probably been repeating it infinitely inside your head this entire class.”
That may be true, but I was not going to admit it.
Instead, I tore my gaze off him, allowing myself to actually breathe again. I tried to find something pleasant to soothe my nerves—maybe an adorable bird perched on the window, or even Davies choking on the floor.
But no, I found Jill. And her head cocked to the side, doing that “Emma and Jason should elope already” thing. And for once, I couldn’t contradict her with that.
The scene was already quite obvious in itself. Samuels, finally letting our hands be set on the table for the public view to see. Me, looking out to her with a breathless expression. And Samuels, his intense gaze never leaving mine.
I could tell he was still looking, basically scorching a hole in my head. But it wasn’t the fact that we were looking at each other that was shocking. What really mystified Jill was probably the fact that we were communicating with one another, and it wasn’t hostile at all.
Normally, I’d pounce on Samuels and probably claw his eyes out with my cat-nails. Maybe even bayonet him with my quill. But no—we were quite the opposite of that happy little scene, actually.
The rest of our class was far too entertained to be shocked. Flitwick’s attempts of ordering a class were quite hilarious—poor man. I thanked the heavens that Jeremy’s attention was directed elsewhere, or else he’d probably start singing about how Samuels and I have random sex-capades.
“CLASS!” Flitwick shrieked, trying to restore order yet not gaining any. “IF YOU DO NOT CALM DOWN, THEN I WILL HAVE TO SPANK—”
Instantly, the bell rang. Yet, I was very interested to hear the end of Flitwick’s threat. Hmm….so many possibilities with that.
Every student, nearly in tears, exited the class feeling light and exhausted from laughing their asses off. The day was over, yet Flitwick’s unintentional hilarity was forever.
Suddenly, I was yanked from my seat and before I knew that I was standing up, I was being dragged towards the door. Samuels’ strength obviously has not left him, a fact that annoyed me to no end.
How could I be stuck looking like a crazy person while he surfaces as frickin Hercules? Where is the justice in the world?
“Where are we going?” I asked, piqued at being hauled around again. I am a human, not a domestic pet, you wanker.
“To Snape?” he answered, a little questionable. He raised an amused eyebrow at me. “Aw, are you going to miss me already, honey?”
We were descending down to the dungeon with such speed I thought we would start time-traveling. Samuels apparently couldn’t take me anymore than I could him. Was it weird of me to feel irked about that?
“Yes, because I’ll miss being dragged around like a mutt.” I scoffed, rolling my eyes. “And call me that one more time or I’ll—”
“You’ll what, Dobbs?” he snorted rather derisively as we stood outside of Snape’s classroom.
It was cold, eerie, and could only be fit for someone as charismatic and enjoyable as Severus Snape.
“Threaten me with your deranged violent fantasies yet not actually do anything?” he suggested, and I tried not to give away myself.
Sure, there have been many furious scenarios involving Samuels and violence in my head that have never actually happened. But how dare he mock me and my creative imagination!
“You know what?!” I raised my hand, going in for the plunge. “How’s this for vi—”
My left hand made action to slap him painfully across the cheek, yet Samuels had something else in mind. With his damn reflexes, he intercepted my slap, and instead took control of both my hands.
Forcefully, he then drove my back into the wall….quite painfully, I might add. I didn’t scream or groan—just looked at him with no emotion, not ready to give him any satisfaction.
“How’s this for violent?” he completed my question, his murmur sending my body into a reaction of unwilling chills, followed by waves of heat. Were there such things as goosebumps when you’re feeling…hot?
He was staring down at me with intensity, and I was doing the same, angrily. Impulsively, I kicked him hard in the shins. His eyes tightened, yet he didn’t show pain. I knew it was painful—I’m a pretty good kicker!
“Quit acting like a bloody barbarian and get off me before I—” I tried to spitefully finish, but his head dipped down to my level. His face was closing inches to mine, and I was running out of my clever wit. “Erupt into hives.”
Erupt into hives?! For moments like this, I should really keep emergency bitchy-banter lodged in the back of my head…before I say something stupid like that!
“Very attractive, Dobbs,” he whispered, his hands pressing mine flat against the wall on both sides of me. His eyes were dark, and growing ever darker as they neared.
I couldn’t tell what was making me dizzy—the husky whisper of his voice, or the dark, intense shade of his eyes.
It drove me crazy that my plan was backfiring—because now he was toying with me! In my mind, I tried to think of a clever way to get him off. But the man was a bloody Titan, and was probably enjoying incarcerating me.
Still, I couldn’t believe he was using my tricks to get to me. Captain spot is mine and seducing was my idea first! As childish as this sounds…what a cheater!
His violent gaze focused on me, scanning my face. For some reason, I felt as though this were it. Something completely regrettable was going to occur, and it was out of his rage.
Yet in moments, the triumphant look swept off his face, and was then replaced by innocent confusion. It seemed as though he was confused at how I got there, and how he was on me.
Well, you kind of man-handled me, you dolt. Instead of snapping at him, I stayed silent. Strange. Did I want to provoke him?
Maybe he realized how weird this might’ve looked, him pinning me against a wall. Maybe he was concluding that his short little rage-fests led him to do the most uncharacteristic actions.
So many ‘maybes’ going through my head yet…I was still pinned.
With the hitting feeling of realization, one would’ve thought that Samuels would back off, and then probably try to convince me that I was just dreaming. More like nightmare-ing.
But no, he was still on me. Why wasn’t he getting off?!
I opened my mouth to protest, but he moved in closer. Flashbacks of déjà vu incidents similar to this relayed in my head, and I only recalled how mindless and warm I was. This moment wasn’t any different, other than the fact that we were forcibly joined close together.
As his touch became hotter than a flame, I realized something utterly and impossibly inevitable: Jason Samuels was going to snog me.
It was a foreign thought, thinking that Samuels would do anything other than pummel me into mincemeat. The first question that came to mind was “Is he a good kisser?” rather than “WHAT THE HELL ARE YOU DOING EMMA!?”
My mind was irrational, and I did not care at the moment.
His face came closer, and my body remained motionless against the wall. I was too stunned for words, yet I was taking everything without protest. What the hell is wrong with me?!
What added to even more of my irrationality was suddenly realizing how….handsome Samuels actually was. Oh God, I did not just say that.
No matter how alluring his unfathomable eyes looked, or even how touchable his dark brown hair seemed—admitting that my adversary of many years is even remotely “attractive” means that my brain has been ransacked by insanity.
“Dobbs, Samuels,” entered in a snide voice. “Have you survived each other, or—”
One pure thought ran through my mind as Snape assessed the scene: Oh shit.
“Remind me never to resort to a punishment such as this,” Snape continued in his rather condescending tone. “I wouldn’t dare become Hogwarts’ Matchmaker.”
Ugh, go drown in your cauldron
“Professor,” Samuels stammered, instantly releasing me from my makeshift-prison with the wall. “This isn’t what it looks like—”
“You could hardly call this matchmaking.” I scoffed, running my free hand down my spine to comfort the soreness.
“Oh, and I suppose Samuels here was just assisting you in finding the wall, Dobbs?” Snape asked, not convinced at all. He was enjoying the discomfort he had caused….sadistic freak. “Before you two engage in another scintillating encounter, allow me give the antidote. Or do you find your current state all the more convenient?”
“Antidote!” Samuels and I both answered quickly. I couldn’t bare to look at his reaction—afraid that his eyes might be doing that “smoldering” thing again.
“Of course,” Snape said with a Snape-style smile, also known as a distorted frown/ grimace. “Step into my office.”
Thank God. The sooner I get away from this devil-man, the sooner my thoughts will return to it’s normal pattern. I won’t have to think of him, and I will not be think of that would-be kiss!
At least one good thing came out of this: I have to step up my game. No more temporary insanity, no more misleading thoughts. If I want to beat Samuels for the damn Captain spot, I’m going to have to fight fire with enormous, blazing flames.
Dear Readers Who I Apologize To Immensely For My Horrid Updating Skills,
I hope you enjoyed this chapter, and I’m sorry to those who were expecting “the kiss”. But hey, it’s better to wait things out than to just plunge right in, eh? When you’ve finished this lovely little chapter, reviews would be very niceJ Favorite moments, quotes, characters?
Your Obedient Servant,
PS: Happy holidays everyone!