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Chapter 3: What Scares Me Most
Saranghae @ TDA.
Homework is boring.
That is the only way to explain it. Well, it isn't; it's depressing, tedious, dull to the point of madness, just plain crap... I could go on for a while. But the point still stands - I'm bored.
I push back against my seat, moving my hands away from my Braille notes, and pick up my quill. I'm twirling it in my hands, imagining how many times I can get it to write 'Jack Ass Ryder' when I feel it. You know that tingly feeling you get down your back when you know someone's watching you? Yeah, well, I feel it and I don't like it.
I feel like they're glaring at me, like I'm in trouble and about to be scolded. I freeze, hand hovering over the table, quill falling from beneath my fingers; there's only one person here who could be even remotely mad at me. Damn. She figured it out. Well, it was inevitable. I straighten up. I just can't help myself. "Lucy, I've been expecting you."
...Well, I have.
She's leaning against the back of my chair now, I can feel her hands at my sides and her breath tickle my left ear. "Three days ago, you told me you'd talk to Louis about school. Today I find out you've been lying to me."
Okay, that is not technically true; I avoided her so I wouldn't have to lie. Big difference. But I am so not going to tell her that!
I say nothing, it's safer.
"You've been getting up early, much to your dorm mates' complete and utter shock, and leaving before me, letting me believe that you've talked to Louis." I wonder how long it took for her to figure this all out.
"I told you I could take care of myself." That is probably the stupidest thing I have ever said. Lucy's hand plus Ciaran's head equals serious head injury. Ow. I grimace and rub the spot where she whacked me. What the hell happened to her 'Ciaran, you can do anything' speech? "I'm sorry, but it's true." Why the hell am I still speaking? Shut up, Ciaran. Shut up! "For three days I got up, dressed myself and made my way around school accident-free, staircases and all. I'm fine and you know it, so please stop babying me."
Silence. Lucy moves and sits next to me. "I know." She's calm; I like it. This is good... I think. "I'm not enforcing this because I don't trust you or think you're incapable. I'd rather you do it yourself, you know that, you have to sooner or later. I do this because your mother worries too much and will want to pull you out of school if she finds out and I don't want you to leave. So, I'm being selfish; why didn't you talk to Louis?"
"I couldn't find him and you were busy." Technically, I just didn't look but even if I did, I don't think it's ever wise to interrupt Lucy when she's busy, Jack understands that best. I don't bother to hide my smile, thinking of that memory. I wonder if Lucy knows I use that against him when he tries to speak against her. That might get me back on her good side. Just.
"What are you smiling about?" I shake my head. "Good. Now if you won't talk to my cousin, I will. I want you to stay in school and I know you want that, too."
I do want that. I have more freedom here, I can do what I want, take care of myself... Despite what this conversation sounds like. I do everything myself, just with a friend constantly at my side. At home, my mum is always worrying. I think the memory of the car still freaks her out.
"But..." Please don't guilt trip me. Please don't guilt trip me. Please don't guilt trip me. "That won't stop me from telling her."
Worse. Blackmail. How evil. What's worse than that is that I know she'll do it and I don't want to deal with my mother. I shudder still thinking about the letter she sent after she heard about Jack's accident. Her promise to come to school and talk about my 'situation' wasn't needed when Lucy told her she was there for me in the reply. Lucy thought it best not to tell her that she was passing that 'responsibility' on to her cousin. My mum knows Lucy not Louis; she'd wanna check him out.
Have I mentioned how much I actually do love this girl by my side? Despite this horrible situation she's putting me in, which I won't let her get away with so easily. It doesn't mean that I don't love her.
I hope my glare shows how much I am not liking what she just threatened me with, but I nod. "I'll talk to him tomorrow." That'll give me tonight to come up with something to say. She kicks my leg under the table and throws something into my arms; my cane. "Or now, I can go now." I stand up. "I'll go find him."
"Good. I left him in the library, he should just be leaving. You can catch him going to Ravenclaw tower." I don't like that smug tone she's got going on. Oh, no. She did not do what I think she did. Did she?
I swallow down nausea. "Aren't you coming with me?"
"No," she scoffs. "You can take care of yourself."
I want to scream. I really do. Seriously, isn't that the exact same thing I've been saying for the past two and a half weeks going on seven years? I think back to my first year. I officially met Lucy after about a month here and we were all sat together at dinner, Lucy, Jack and I, and the freedom got to my head; I loved it and I wanted more. So I told them that if we got to Abby first then my mum would never know I wasn't being escorted around. Jack reminded me that we were in the same classes and now seeing the same tutor so to suck it up because we were stuck together. Lucy scoffed and said "fat chance, it's either you or Molly."
She chose me.
I wonder what she'd say if I re-requested that. "Go, Ciaran."
On second thoughts, it's best not to chance it. Besides, it wouldn't work anyway; Mum became good friends with Digby and he'd tell her everything. She's smart, my mother, all Ravenclaw. I leave quickly and climb the few stairs to the Ravenclaw common room. I'm not exactly sure where it is. It's kind of a guessing game from here on out; which way to turn, if there is a turn, where to stop. I could be here for hours.
I should have made Lucy come with me; she knows this place better than I do... It doesn't take me long to figure out that this is my punishment. Using my right hand as a guide, my cane swinging lightly in my left, I feel around the wall while I walk until it turns and I know to turn with it, crashing right into someone.
"I am so sorry," I call out, hands in the air.
"It's fine," she tells me. I don't recognize the voice, I don't actually know many people here, not really. She takes my hands, though, and brings them to my side. I'm glad for that and I thank her; knowing me I'd have stood like that for a while. Oh, the awkward memories. "Can I help you?"
"Maybe, did you just come from the Ravenclaw common room?"
"Yeah," she replies.
I nod. That's good. Or bad, depending on how you look at it. "Is Louis Weasley in there?"
"Oh." She sounds unhappy about that. "No, sorry." She takes hold of my arm, ready to lead me somewhere. "Would you like to wait for him inside?"
"No," I tell her quickly. I really don't need an audience for this. I lean back against the wall, her hand falling from my arm. "I'm happy to wait here."
"Are you sure?" I just nod again. I don't know what to think of this girl; she sounds so... Pitying. I hate it. She has to leave. "Okay, then. I'll see you around."
I call out a good bye and I wait. Lucy said he would be leaving the library now, it wouldn't take that long. I really hope it does, though. I have no idea how to do this, I have no idea what to say. I have all of these different scenarios running through my head and not one of them seems appealing. No, this is all going to go horribly wrong, something always does around me. And -
I turn my head to the left; light whistling, the jingle of something metal being moved around, fruity aftershave. I let out a deep breath, preparing myself for whatever nightmare this will turn into, and hold my cane to my chest. Then I look down at it - you understand - and let it go, lifting it up so it's sticking out in a horizontal line.
He walks into it, I know he does; I feel it hit something hard, I assume it's his chest. "Can I help you?"
I lower the cane slowly, managing a small smile; I do have manners after all. "Louis Weasley?"
I don't want him to think I already know it's him, then I'd have to explain why. He really cannot know why. "Yeah," he says slowly, elongating the word, like he's being cautious. Why he thinks he needs to be cautious, I have no idea and doubt I will ever understand; I have more reason to be cautious than he does. "Can I help you?"
I hold up a finger; partly to start my little list of reasons why I'm here, mostly to keep him quiet. It's my speaking time. "First of all, I'm only here because Lucy is mean and selfish and if this is what it takes to make her happy, so be it."
I don't say what it is exactly that will make Lucy happy, nor do I mention my benifit. If my suspicions about what she did is true, he already knows.
He makes an 'oh' sound. "You're Key, aren't you?"
And there it is...
"No," I snap quietly. Harsh yet quiet. I actually rarely ever shout; people think that's weird. "That is not my name! Do I look like something you stick in a door?"
"Hey, calm down," he says softly. I fear I upset him a little; he actually does seem to have a constant need to please people, he obviously doesn't take people snapping at him very well. I imagine his bottom lip is wobbling and everything. Oh, God, I hope not! "I only know what my cousin calls you."
Ah, defensive. The guy's stronger than he... Sounds. You get what I mean. "Sorry, I just don't like it very much. So, I'm here for Lucy."
"Then I know why you're here." I try to continue, but he really likes to interrupt me, it seems. "She found me in the library and asked how everything was going. Once she saw my confusion, it didn't take her long to figure out I knew nothing about it and you were lying to her."
Again with the lying; it's not lying if they don't know. Not that that's the right way to go though life. Truth will out and all, as you can tell. My mum like to say honesty is always the best policy; judging from what I did, I tend to listen to my dad. He has the right idea; women can by scary. Maybe that's why I'm gay...
Right. There's a point to why I'm here. And he's still talking.
"I said Lucy must really love you if she'll do anything to get you to stay," he repeats everything for me and I have to agree; some wouldn't bother. "Though, I didn't think she'd ask me to help her boyfriend; even with her 'schedule' she'd never trust a family member with her personal life. Though, I suppose I could be an exception, considering second year..."
Whoa, whoa, hold everything. I hold up my hands, bringing his ramble to a complete stop. This must be fixed before the thought brings the world to an end. "I am not Lucy's boyfriend!"
"No?" I shake my head quickly, I hope the disgust I feel is as evident on my face as it is in my gut. I mean, there's nothing bad about Lucy, any guy would be lucky to be able to say they're dating her, but, not even talking about my own... preferences, she's like a sister to me; it's just too weird. "Oh, I just assumed because you spend all your spare time together, or as much spare time as Luce can," he laughs softly. I don't, I'm still freaked out. "I know there's another boy in your group, but they don't seem the type."
That's such a nice way of saying they hate each other, isn't it? Not that I really believe any of it. It's love, I swear! I will prove that eventually!
"Actually, every time I hear about Lucy it's 'her and her blind boyfriend, Key'." The name has spread. No! Must stop that. But at least people are now accepting the fact that we don't just sit next to each other, even if they did get the completely wrong idea. I should add 'they thought I was straight and dating Lucy' to my list of reasons as to why no guy will date me.
Is he still talking?
"Right, so I'm here because Lucy asked me to be, so my mum wouldn't find out and pull me out of school, because we both want me to stay. Since my tutor can't do it, she's with Jack during the day," I actually don't think I thought of Abby, but now that I mention it, she really can't, "Lucy thought you were the only logical choice. So, will you do it?"
"You really want me to walk with you from one class to another, then to the library every day until your friend gets back?"
I hate it when people sound patronizing. It makes liking them so much harder. I shrug. "You know what, don't bother. I was only here for Lucy."
I turn to walk away, I just want to go to bed, but I don't get far. Louis grips my shoulder with his hand, forcing me to stop. I feel his hand turn around on my shirt, so I think that he's turning to face me. "I'm sorry, I didn't mean to upset you or make you feel bad in any way; I just meant that we don't know each other, you're trusting my cousin's word that a stranger is a good idea. Are you sure?"
"I trust Lucy, Lucy trusts you." I consider that my best reason.
He let's go of my shoulder. "She told me your mum would be too worried to want you to stay, she sounds like a very protective mother." I shrug; she is. "Lucy would be very upset if I said no and you left." Oh, God. Does that mean...? "So, yes, I will help you."
"Yes," he says, chuckling softly again. "I understand Lucy's reasoning; we're in all the same classes and I go to the library every day anyway. Walking with you is no problem. She also added 'come to Hufflepuff and make sure he's awake' to this; since I get up early, how hard can that be?"
I hold back a scoff. He'll see just how hard that can be. "So, since 'Key' is not allowed, what is your name?"
Ha. "Oh, no, I can't tell you that," I smirk.
"What? Why? You know mine, I can't go around not knowing yours," he whines. He really whines, like a little girl, it's so funny.
Revenge is the reason I won't tell him; he deserves it for what he did the other day. My shoulder really hurt afterwards; I just can't allow that. "You knocked me into the wall, called out a halfhearted sorry and continued running. I could have been really hurt for all you know, but you didn't stop."
He's quiet for a while. I honestly believed he had no idea who it had been he'd run into, that he'd been too wrapped up in whatever he was doing to stop, which kind of makes him like Lucy in that respect. This silence so proves my belief. He starts stuttering; it's quite funny to hear, I can only imagine what his face looks like; all red from embarrassment and his mouth hanging open. "It may have been a little rushed, but I truly meant it and I am so, so sorry. I was late; I had to rush dinner to get to the -" he falters at the end. "I had to go," he finishes lamely.
I hold up my cane, waving it in the air until I get it to point at his chest. I push a little to hard and he groans in pain. "Sorry. I don't need to know why it happened, just take your punishment; figure out my name."
"Yep." I roll my eyes. Honestly, I'm a little confused; I may not know everyone in the school, but everyone knows me, or my name at least. They usually associate it with pity, but don't actually care, though, so I ignore them all. I don't need that. But Louis not knowing me at all? Being able to introduce myself and know he had no judgements or assumptions about me? It's like Christmas for a four year old child; I feel all giddy inside.
I may actually be liking the guy. He's still being punished, but I'm liking him... No, not like that!
"Can I at least have a clue?"
"No, that would defeat the purpose; punishment."
"And my punishment is for not stopping to see if you were okay?"
I shake my head. "You knocked me into the wall, I hurt my shoulder." I hear an 'ah' sound; he finally gets it. "If you really are going to listen to Lucy, I'll see you tomorrow. If not, hopefully you'll look where you're going next time we meet in the halls," I smirk softly, but you can't blame me for my scepticism; this has never happened before.
I don't need to wait for the staircases to change, I'm glad for that; the quicker I get back to Hufflepuff, the quicker I can go to bed.
I have no idea how tomorrow is going to go. I think that's what scares me the most.
A/N: And the story begins. :P I hope you enjoyed this chapter and will love Louis and the others and as much as I do, and Ciaran may or may not end up loving... ;)
I feel now is an appropiate time to say that since this story is completely Ciaran's POV that I will be posting a story collection to go with this, missing moments and other POVs and such, which I hope you will read and love. :)