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Chapter 1: One
“Potter!” Tilly yelled, whirling around and scanning the area. She didn’t see much in the dim room, and fished her wand from her pocket. “Potter what the fuck has that dumbass cousin of yours done now?!”
Silence responded, deafeningly loud.
“Potter!” She yelled again, taking a step forward and subsequently tripping over something. She landed in a crumpled heap on the floor and, swearing, sat up, stretching her hand out, cautiously patting the ground around her in an attempt to find the thing that currently bound her feet. She’d expected rope, or cloth, or maybe even cuffs of some kind. That honestly wouldn’t surprise her right now. But what she did find sure freaked her out a bit. It was hair. She groped about frantically, eventually finding her wand and casting lumos. She almost screamed. There was hair everywhere. It hung from the rafters, coiled around the legs of tables and chairs, rested in heaps in the corners of the room… It was thick and brown and soft looking. And it all came from her head.
“Okay.” Her voice was shaky and low, echoing slightly in the small room. “Okay. This is weird. This is really, really weird.”
She cautiously removed her feet from the strands and stood, making her way over to the window and attempting to open them. Nothing. Locked. An alohamora was quickly cast and the shutters flung open, and she stared in awe at the landscape before her.
She was high up. Really, really high up. She was in a tower, everything scaled down, the forest looking like a child’s toy set and the river a shoelace on a carpet. She was in a freaking tower… She turned back around again. Pale moonlight bathing her surroundings, making everything eerily bright and shadows stretch across the floor like dozing cats in the noonday sun. The silver light highlighted everything, every nook and cranny. And it made it painfully obvious that there was no way out of here. Not for her, anyway. She sighed, sitting down heavily. Propping her chin up on her hand, humming lightly and thinking how, exactly, she came to be in this position. All of it, in the end, boiled down to one person and one person alone. Fred Weasley the Second.
Two hours earlier.
“James! You won’t believe what I’ve got!” Fred came bounding into the room, a large, dusty tome under his arm and a cocky grin on his face.
Tilly glanced up from her work and set him with a stern look. “Weasley, you know you’re not supposed to play with things you find in here, right? And that you’re here to work?” She gestured to the case files in front of her.
He waved my statement away and continued to jabber on to his cousin about how cool this… thing was.
“Well… What is it?” Potter asked from his spot next to me at the desk, a half amused, half affectionate smile plastered on his face.
“It’s a book!” Weasley said proudly, dropping it onto the table in front of us and crossing his arms proudly.
“A book?” She asked, raising a skeptical brow. “You’re getting this excited over a book? Jesus Christ I knew you were simple, Weasley, but I didn’t think it went this far.”
He glared at me. “It’s not just any book. Take a look.”
Potter brushed the dust off of the cover and Tilly glanced down, reading the title aloud.
“E. E. Kidd’s Fairy Tales for the Bored of Heart?” Potter spoke at the same time as she did. “What kind of -” But Tilly was cut off by the flapping of pages as the book opened up before them on the table, pages whizzing by as if someone was skim reading at supersonic speed. “Weasley…” Her voice was dangerously low. “Where’d you get this?”
“Misuse of Muggle Artifacts Office.” He sounded nervous, and he took a few steps back, just as she mentally slapped him. “What’s it -”
But Potter and her never heard the rest of what Weasley had to say, because at that moment an invisible force grabbed them by the collars of their shirts, tugging them forwards, headfirst into yellowing pages, falling and falling and falling, with Weasley’s yells ringing in their ears.
And then she was here. Sat in a dark room at the top of a tower, with hair impossibly long and realization dawning upon her. They’ve been fairytaled.