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Marlene by LittleWelshGirl99
Chapter 1: Why Are You In A trunk?
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Author’s Introduction: Hello, hello, hello :) I'm LWG, and this is one of my dafter stories (a VERY daft story) that is extremely fun to write nonetheless. I hope you enjoy it! Please review if you read :) A shoutout to NaidatheRavenclaw for beta'ing!
I was sitting on my creaky old bed in the orphanage, trying to meditate. I don’t actually know how to meditate, but hey, it pays to try. My best friend, Lily Evans, is great at meditation. She sits on her bed in the school dorm just humming away to herself while her legs are twisted into truly unnatural positions.
Lily is good at everything. She told me that she did it to consider intelligent questions like ‘what is the point of living’ and ‘why do I fancy James Potter so much.’ She still hasn’t agreed to go out with him, despite being madly in love with every bit of the guy. I’m not exaggerating here, Lily can have quite a dirty mind. I think she’s being a bit stupid actually. I mean, the boy likes the girl, the girl likes the boy too. What could be simpler? They could have such a romantic love story. As long as they call their first born child Marlene, after me. Or maybe if it’s a boy I’ll allow them to consider Malroy (purely for the child’s sake, of course. Wouldn’t want him getting teased now, would we?).
I sighed at my own thoughts in exasperation. I was such a stereotypical 'dumb blonde.' I couldn't even meditate properly! Useless. Maybe my parents died from a heart attack caused by me telling them the capital of France was Washington. They died when I was six years old. They died from ‘something’ apparently. What do people generally die of? I didn’t really understand what had happened at the time, until I woke up in this place. I don't miss them; the only memories I really have of them are how strict they were.
I realised that my legs had pins and needles in them, so I groaned and stretched out, promptly falling off the narrow bed and into my half packed trunk.
“Ow!” I swore, just as a little girl called Sophia wandered in, sucking her thumb and holding her teddy in a strangling grip. I’d kind of taken Sophia under my wing since her arrival. Her parents had recently been killed in a car crash, but the other kids teased her because of her thumb sucking problem and her obsession with marmalade.
“Why are you in a trunk?” she asked, her soft brown eyes looking huge in the dim light. I grinned at her,
“Well I was meditating and then I fell off.”
“What’s the trunk for anyway? Why is it called a trunk and not a suitcase?”
“That,” I replied, standing up with difficulty, “Is a very good question, my little banana boat.” Her thumb came out of her mouth with a loud slurping noise,
“I’m not a banana boat, I’m a carrot boat!” she protested, “And answer my first question.” I considered how to break the news to her that I was going away for the rest of the year.
“Well…I have to go back to school in about twenty minutes.”
“Oh. Ok, I’ll see you at tea time then." she started to wander out when I stopped her,
“Actually…It’s a boarding school,” I said regretfully. Even though I wasn’t regretful. I couldn’t wait to get back to Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. But you know, the empathy thing was supposed to placate people. Or is that sympathy? Sophia span around, looking alarmed,
“But who can I eat marmalade with, then? Mr. Mushroom will miss you!” tears started to well up in her eyes and I felt a whole lot of guilt. I pulled her little frame onto my lap and hugged her tightly,
“I’ll miss you too, Mr. Mushroom,” I spoke to her teddy, “But one day I’ll be a grown up and I can come and take you away from this place and the other mean teddy bears who tease you and are horrid,” I promised. Sophia smiled,
“Do you pinky swear?” she asked, holding out her little finger for me to solemnly shake with my own pinky linked through it,
“Pinky swear.” She slid off my knee and waved once before scampering back to her dorm. She’d probably lie on her bed drawing for the rest of the day. I watched her go, silently, before turning to my trunk. With a quick scan of the room, I retrieved all of my scattered belongings and stuffed them into the battered box. It was time to go.
“MARLS!” Almost as soon as I stepped onto platform 9 and 3/4 I was hug tackled from behind by a ball of red hair and green eyes . Well, not a ball actually, more like a stick?
“Lily!” I yelled back, beaming, “I’ve missed you so much!" I hugged her tightly. She smelt like vanilla ice cream as she laughed,
“I’ve missed your daftness too. Did you get my letters?”
“Every one of them. I would have answered, but you know how closely they watch us there. I’m so sorry about what Petunia said to you, hon. That’s terrible.” Lily’s eyes welled up with tears and I hugged her comfortingly.
“I just don’t know what I’ve done wrong,” mumbled Lily, “I’ve tried so hard to be a good sister. I never meant to hurt her though,” she sighed, “ Anyway, how was your summer? Not too boring?” I shrugged,
“Just the usual. I practiced meditating again!” I exclaimed happily.
“Oh, yay! Now we can do it together! Did you remember to clear your mind of all thoughts save one?”
“I sure did. And I had a remarkable vision in which you actually agreed to go out with James as you secretly want to.” Lily slapped my arm and blushed,
“Shut up!” she hissed, glancing around. Out of the blanket of fog that was surrounding the station came two very familiar people; our fellow Gryffindor friends, Mary MacDonald and Alice Harbour. I noticed that mary had dyed her hair black.
“Ahoy there Mazzy-Azzy!” I hailed them cheerfully. The two were such an unlikely pair of friends; Mary was very emotional and sarcastic, while Alice was on the quieter side but with a feisty temper. Still, they were never seen without each other. They both grinned back at me and wandered over, dragging their trunks.
“How are you guys?” asked Alice, “Good summers?”
“No!” I replied dolefully, “I lost my favourite pair of socks."
“Oh what a tragedy,” grimaced Mary. I tried to save her fail of a grimace in my memory forever.
“You look like you’re about to throw up, are you ok?” Lily asked innocently. Mary scowled,
“Fine. No-one ask how our summers were then.”
“We were just about to-“ I began but Alice cut across me,
“Never mind her. She’s just had some bad news over the summer.
“That would be the understatement of the year,” muttered Mary darkly before being pulled away roughly by little Alice.
“Mary’s dyed her hair black,” I observed, “I wonder what I’d look like with black hair.”
“Like Sirius’s twin sister,” Lily answered, just as the boy himself ambled round the corner with his hands in his pockets. He grinned happily as he saw us and was about to say something but I’d already screeched,
“SIRIUS!” causing Lily’s owl to squawk in alarm.
“Well I wonder who that is,” commented Sirius, “Could you make any more noise, McKinnon?”
“Yes, I could if you wanted me to actually-“
“Pretend I didn’t ask that last one.” I stuck my tongue out at him.
“Hi Sirius,” smiled Lily perfectly. Her teeth are so straight. I wonder what toothpaste she uses. “Where’s the rest of the gang then?”
“Buying chocolate frogs,” he grimaced. It was a better grimace than Mary’s. That’s because it actually was a grimace.
“I hope they’re buying me some. I am poor, you know!” I smacked his arm, “Buy me more jewellery for Christmas! A girl can’t live without jewellery, you know, and all I currently have is an elastic band,“ I was still nattering away when Lupino Supremo, Poo poo head Potter and Peter Pan bumped into us. Otherwise known as The Marauders; the most awesome people in my life. Next to Lily. And then maybe Mazzy-Azzy come third. Anyway, they are pretty cool friends. They give me chocolate.
“Remus, James, Pete!” I called, “Say hello to me and give me your chocolate frogs!” They grinned at us and started eating again,
“No,” munched James, “Oh my god these are so delicious; the chocolate just melts in your mouth and trickles down your throat-“ I turned to Peter, my little adopted son. I don’t know why I’ve adopted him, he just looks really cute and small next to the other guys. He needs a bit of motherly love.
“Son,” I addressed him seriously, “You wouldn’t want your mummy to starve now, would you?” He raised his eyebrows,
“How do you know?”
“I am a mind reader,” I actually kept a straight face. Doubt flashed across Peter’s face and then he laughed,
“They don’t exist!” I put an arm on his shoulder,
“Ah my young boy. You have much to learn. You are currently looking at that girl over there and thinking she is pretty.” Peter blushed and chucked a chocolate frog in my face, which I caught easily thanks to years of Quidditch training. Remus looked at the platform clock and coughed,
“We have 2 minutes and 45 seconds to get on the train, guys. 5 seconds have gone throughout the time it took me to tell you this. The doors close at 2 minutes. Run?” We ran with our trunks to the closing doors. Lily had the bright idea of jamming her trunk in them to stop them from shutting completely, and we all scrambled in, falling on top of each other and giggling hysterically in a heap. Well, the boys were doing 'manly giggling'. Apparently.
We’d managed to nick a compartment all to our special selves, and were now chatting amiably about the summer and something to do with a Quidditch World Cup. I wasn’t particularly interested in Quidditch; I just knew how to play it. I looked at Lupin who was lazily watching us all with quiet amusement. He had got quite a nice tan over the summer. Well, when I say tan I mean that he didn’t look dead anymore and only half dead. He was also taller and seemed a lot surer about himself. His sandy hair was ruffled messily and I couldn’t help but think that he looked quite nice. Very nice… A slight blush rose up my cheeks. I startled myself. I couldn’t believe that I had actually just been checking out a boy. I never thought I would have had the confidence to do that again. I’ve had too bad an experience with boys.
I was distracted from my shocking relevation by Peter who was opening and closing one of those little muggle cocktail umbrellas. He has this thing where he purposefully breaks old supersitions like stepping on cracks, walking under ladders, opening umbrellas inside. All of that stuff. It's quite amusing.
“We are sixth years woo hoooooooo!” sang Sirius tunelessly.
“Opera standard, Sirius, mate! Bravo! You could kill you-know-who with your voice alone,” poked James.
“Aw, come on, admit to singing it with me back on the platform just to frighten those first years!”
“Never!” James acted astonished.
“Sixth year, and still Petunia won’t accept me,” muttered Lily to me sadly. I patted her arm a little clumsily in an attempt to cheer her up.
“Oooh! McKinnon and Evans sitting in a tree…” gibed James in a lame attempt at humour.
“Cabbage off,” I snorted.This could be a long journey.
We were back in our cosy sixth year dorm, involved in a vigorous pillow fight which I, of course, was winning.
“Catch me if you can!” I screamed, jumping up and down on the bed and flailing my pillow about wildly, catching Lily on the back of the head. She yelled and chucked her water at me, splashing it all over my face.
“That’s cheating!” I spluttered, trying to get off the bed. Mary tackled Lily from behind and somehow got the duvet over her head, wrapping her up like a mummy. Lily shrieked and thrashed about as we laughed and I toppled off the bed onto her.
“Let’s build a den!” suggested Mary loudly and we all laughed in agreement.
“A den! A den!” I danced around singing. Dragging our blankets and pillows onto the floor we arranged them into a tepee over one of the beds and pushed and shoved our way inside. Alice started reading out various facts about her new pet fish at home and we all pretended to listen for a while. Did you know that fish are 100% edible?
Eventually the others drifted off to that mystical land of dreams otherwise known as sleep and I watched them breathing peacefully. It was really strange how people went to sleep. It's almost like you die every night then come back to life again in the morning.
But not quite.
A/N Please review! If you've read this far then i must be doing something right! :P
Edit 17/4/12- A few things changed thanks to my more than amazing beta, Naida! <3
Chapter 2: And a little bit of Charms
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Hi guys! Another chapter-wasn’t that a quick update? xD Oh and check out my newly created Meet The Author! I’m so chuffed about it! *grins* Anyway, enjoy! -LWG xx
I sat in front of the mirror doing my hair. It just wouldn’t sit right! I pulled it up then twirled it round and finally settled on a loose side plait before sorting through my large amounts of make-up to find the perfect shades. As it was a Monday, I would wear pale red eye shadow and matching lip gloss. I had different colours for every day. I smiled at myself then scowled and winked. Shaking my head, I realised how weird I must look and got up to find some clothes. It wouldn’t be a very good idea to go around in my bra and lacy knickers all day would it? Although I’m sure the boys wouldn’t mind that at all. I smirked and picked out a nice bright red shirt and tight black skirt to go under my robes. Red was Monday’s colour as it made me feel a tad more cheerful about the boring week ahead, and more confident. I needed to feel confident right now, to get over the slightly shaky way the dream last night had left me in. I kept getting them at the moment. They weren’t really dreams…more like memories from my childhood. It made me feel incredibly homesick for a home I had lost years ago. I didn’t like it. They should invent a dreamless-sleep potion. Hang on, they already had! I needed to order some. Alice woke up with a grumble and crawled out of our den drearily,
“Go away Monday!” she mumbled. I bounced over to her,
“Ally! Rise and shine! Now you’re going to let me pick out your clothes aren’t you? I have to see what you got over the summer in Italy,” I finished jealously. Alice actually had very good taste in clothes and I loved going through her stuff and picking out the perfect combinations for her petite frame.
“No way Marls! Go away!” she groaned, but I badgered her until she relented.
“Yippeeee!” I shrieked and she clutched her head,
“Had a bit too much last night, did you?” I teased her. She shot me an amused smile,
“Yep, I was out partying till 3am.” Then the others got up, equally sleepy.
“Morny-morning,” I said by way of greeting before opening Alice’s trunk and flicking through her neatly ordered clothes.
“Wow, how do you keep things so neat?” I wondered, looking at my own overflowing trunk, filled with loose underwear and sweet packets. I turned back to Alice’s stuff and pulled out a delicate Venetian lace blouse that practically turned my insides green and a calf-length, tight grey skirt.
“Ok, these are your clothes!” I declared before noticing the most gorgeous little black dress I had ever seen. I pulled it out lovingly and gaped.
“Oh my merlin! Alice Harbour where did you get this dress? I want it!” I shrieked making everyone wince. Alice blushed slightly and hesitated before saying,
“Well…actually I kind of met someone in Rome and he bought it for me…” she began nervously,
“Oh, wow!” I yelled, dropping the dress and jumping up and down, as I tend to do a lot.
“What was his name? I bet it was something amazingly romantic-Italians always are!” shrieked Mary excitedly.
“He was called Orlando,” laughed Alice shyly, “But he wasn’t that amazing. Bit of a prick actually.”
“Why, what happened?”
“Well, we’d gone out to this little pizza restaurant for dinner. It was a lovely little place,” Alice sighed wistfully, “And there were cute little candles and cushions. Loads of mirrors too that reflected the stars in the sky. Then, just as we were leaving, he gets out these gorgeous, black, Italian leather gloves which he gives to me and I was completely in awe of him by this stage,” Alice pauses and a look of disgust crosses her face, “But I then discovered later that if an Italian man gives you leather gloves it means that he doesn’t ever want to see you again! I mean, I can’t be that repulsive, can I?”
“Oh, honey no! Of course you’re not, you’re perfect in every single way!” I exclaimed, hugging her fiercely, “He sounds like such a jerk! If I ever go to Italy I’m gonna kick his arse!” Alice laughed half-heartedly.
“What did you do with the gloves? I hope you burnt them and sent the ashes back to him?” suggested Lily angrily.
“I’ve still got them actually, they’re in my trunk somewhere. They’re really nice!” Alice motioned towards her trunk. Lily ran over to the trunk and after a bit of digging around pulled out some soft black gloves, with tiny silver buttons up one side. She let out a soft gasp,
“Wow the Italians are weird! Why would he spend so much money on an I-don’t-want-to-see-you-again present? This would have cost almost as much as a bloody engagement ring!”
“I know…I don’t understand it either…”
“Well let’s not dwell on sad things like this but lift our heads high and look forward to a sunny future filled with cute boys, gossip and parties!” I proclaimed happily before putting on a spot of blusher, and even more mascara, “Come on girlies, let’s go get ‘em!” I flounced out of the room proudly before realising that no-one had followed me and my grand plan to storm the Common Room had failed. I shrugged and looked around before throwing myself into the biggest, comfiest armchair with a dainty (yeah, I wish) sigh. As I was waiting for the others to hurry up and get their buts down here, Lupin walked down yawning and looking really tired.
“Morning Reemy!” I chirped, “Been awake all night?” He noticed me and groaned,
“Tell me about it. Pads and Prongs are just too excited right now. Something about Quidditch.”
“Erm…who the hell are ‘Pads’ and ‘Prongs?’”
“Oh…never mind…” he looked guilty for a second before shrugging and strolling over to the Gryffindor notice board. I realised for the first time that there was an enormous new notice in the middle of it. I galloped (yes, you heard right. I love galloping) over to Remus and peeked over his shoulder.
MUGGLE FLU RATES AMONG WIZARDS HAVE REACHED CRISIS LEVEL. St. Mungo’s Hospital for Magical Maladies and Injuries has performed extensive research into a magical cure but after several wizarding deaths, have decided on a new course of action, a method invented by the muggles. FLU VACCINATIONS Every citizen is advised to have their vaccination done before the 20th September due to the alarming amount of flu around at the minute.
“What’s a…vacsinashon?” I wondered, slightly worried. Apparently it was a muggle invention, but I’d never heard of it at the orphanage.
“Well they take a weakened form of the flu germs and put them into some kind of sterile fluid. Then they inject them into you and the antibodies in your immune system learn how to fight off the weakened germs without you getting actually affected by the disease, so that if you actually get the disease-“ Remus rambled on, being the brainiac he is. I cut across him,
“Wait, did you say INJECT?” I screeched in his ear. He nodded slowly,
“So inject as in….as in…INJECTIONS?” I started to freak out.
“Yes, Marlene!” he sighed and I scowled,
“That is inhumane! I am NOT having a big, fat needle jabbed in my bum.” Remus started to laugh,
“They don’t inject it up your bum!”
“Oh,” I felt a bit stupid. How did Remus know so much about them anyway?
The rest of the guys came down, laughing maniacally, which annoyed me. I grabbed James’s arm and pulled him over to see the notice. When he’d read it (which took quite a while) he sobered up immediately and scowled at everyone as James Potter does when things don’t go quite according to his perfect, imaginary world. Alice, Lily and Mary came down too and craned their necks to try and read the notice over the heads of the rather large crowd that had gathered. Mary shrieked in alarm,
“WHAT? No way!”
“That’s what I said, they are not jabbing a needle in me!” Alice looked like she was about to faint at the thought, so I steered everyone in the direction of food. Food was always good. Even if it made you fat, which meant you couldn’t fit into dresses, which meant you couldn’t go to parties, which meant you’d never meet any cute boys and never get married and die a virgin! Ok, food was going down on my mental list, but for now, it’d have to do. The rich smell of toast and coffee filled the air and we all realised how hungry we actually were. We sat down heavily on one of the benches, piling our plates with hot, buttered toast. I got that weird feeling that someone was looking at me and turned around sharply, but couldn’t see who it was. I went back to my delicious toast and immediately got the feeling again. Frowning now, I picked up my pocket mirror that I always carry around with me because I’m just cool that way, and pretended to look in it but actually used it to look around the room. I met eyes with someone but they turned away. Interesting… I told Lily, who was sitting next to me. She spluttered on her toast spraying me with crumbs that I wrinkled my nose at.
“Marls! You’ve got a secret admirer!” then she burst out laughing, which was highly offensive, so I ate her last bit of toast in one mouthful,
“Wook whofs laffwing naw,” I chomped, just as the Marauders came over to the table of course.
They looked at me slightly weirdly but then brushed it off as almost normal behaviour. I suppose it was… I swallowed and grinned at them as they sat down with us, shovelling food in their mouths as if there was no tomorrow.
“What’s the rush?” I asked lazily.
“We’ve got a plan. A kind of first-day-back laugh to get rid of all the hyper summer energy!” grinned James enthusiastically.
“Right…” I began but Lily cut across me,
“It’s nothing illegal, right?”
“Of course not Lilykins! Just a harmless little prank-”
“Don’t call me Lilykins! For the hundredth time! And knowing you, Potter, it’ll be a bit more than just a harmless prank!” Lily scowled.
“Actually, it’s pure genius,” commented Sirius, “Remus thought it up, I think the summer must have changed him. He never likes pranking!”
“Where were you over the summer?” I asked Remus.
“Oh, here and there. Was with my parents for a bit then visited my grandparents who haven’t seen me in a while, stayed at James’s for a week,” he answered vaguely.
“What’s the prank then?” asked Mary, sounding excited. James cleared his throat and whispered the plan to us,
“Basically, you know how the Professors always try and make those absolutely awful jokes? Well, in whatever lesson we have next, we’re going to make the class laugh really loudly and madly every time he says one! If we laugh for about ten minutes each time, then I think we’ll waste the whole lesson laughing!” he grinned.
“And the amazing thing is, the Professor can’t tell us off, because HE MADE THE JOKE IN THE FIRST PLACE!” Sirius was practically wetting himself. It was a good idea though, and I smiled at Remus but he looked away.
“What happens if we have McGonagall first, though? She never makes jokes,” I smirked.
“Well here come our timetables now, so let’s find out,” suggested Alice as we all saw McGonagall (speak of the devil) walking solemnly around the house tables, handing out timetables.
“She looks like someone’s died, doesn’t she?” I whispered to Lily with a giggle. McGonagall reached us and shuffled through to find the right papers before handing them out. I was the quickest, and scanned the lessons,
“We’ve got charms first!” I announced.
“Brilliant!” grinned Sirius evilly, “Flitwick’s a complete pushover! Full of lame jokes too,” he rubbed his hands together.
“Shall we get a move on then?” I suggested, “We need to get there earlier to tell everyone the plan. If we have the Slytherins or Ravenclaws with us they won’t agree to it though…”
“Good idea, let’s go!” Everyone jumped up eagerly and filed out of the Great Hall to get their bags and quills. I ran to the cupboard I’d dumped mine in and tried to remember the way to the Charms classroom. I got there eventually and slid into a seat next to Mary and Lily, who were gushing over some boy. Well actually it was Mary doing all the gushing. I love that word; gushing!
“He’s just so…charming, though!” whispered Mary, “I wonder if he’s single?”
“Of course not!” scoffed Lily, “Amos Diggory is never single!”
“You’re not really considering Diggory are you?” I said scornfully, getting out my quills, “He’s such a pompous freak. Anyway he’s a 7th year.” Mary looked at me incredulously,
“Why does it matter that he’s a 7th year? We can’t exactly limit our choices to boys in our year. That leaves us with a choice of the Marauders, Snape or that annoying Ravenclaw Edgar Bones.”
“Don’t be silly! There are loads more boys in our year! What about Evan Rosier? He’s ok looking. Oh, and Benjy Fenwick?” I suggested some names but Mary wrinkled her nose,
“But 7th year have Diggory, Daniel Wood and Caradoc Dearborn, the welsh bloke! And Evan Rosier is just creepy by the way,” Mary was starting to get angry for some reason.
“I suppose…shall we just change the subject?” I looked around at the rest of the Gryffindors and the Hufflepuffs that we were sharing Charms with. I signalled to James,
“Have you told them the plan?” he grinned back,
“Yep. And Flitwick should make his entrance around about…now!” Right on cue, Professor Flitwick hobbled in, waving his wand at the blackboard. The words Supersensory Charms appeared in curly writing as Flitwick cleared his throat.
“Ahem! Settle down, class, settle down. This year we shall be following a complicated course of charmwork including advanced wand techniques and irregular charms. This lesson, we shall be starting upon the supersensory charm, alright?” he continued in his squeaky voice, shuffling some papers, “Ah, yes,” he picked up a plan of some sort, “Professor McGonagall believes it wise for students to sit in register order for all their lessons due to certain…disruptions…last year.” Amidst the groans that followed, I did some quick calculations and realised I’d me next to Lupin. That wasn’t so bad; at least I wasn’t with Jon Egbert, Hufflepuff’s notorious nose-picker, like poor Lily. I swiftly picked up my bags and dumped them on the desk with Remus, mouthing sympathetic words at Lily. I turned to Remus, trying to think of something to talk about,
“So, how’s life?” I asked innocently. Remus looked mystified,
“Erm…it’s ok…” I sniffed and said in a very clever imitation of Professor Flitwick,
“Mr. Lupin, that is not a sufficient answer. See me after the class, alright?” Lupin grinned and shook his head. Silence fell as Flitwick started to say something again,
“Yes…well…supersensory charms. Can anyone tell me what they are, exactly?” Lily’s hand shot up. I saw Remus’s hand up too. He must think I’m really stupid for not knowing any answers. I wished I wasn’t so lazy in class sometime. The only thing I really excelled at was Defence against the Dark Arts. I kind of hated my reputation of the flaky, dumb blonde. My hand inched up but at the last second I pulled back. It was too hard. I heard Lily’s voice answering the question but it seemed to be really far away,
“A supersensory charm extends the boundaries of your nerves, almost into a phantom circle of awareness around you. You know if something is touching that circle and then have time to react to the object or person, and cannot be taken by surprise.”
“Very good, Miss Evans! A very useful charm for Quidditch then, eh?” he attempted a wink and chuckled. The class was silent for a moment, but then James kicked us off. He stared at Flitwick, gradually turning redder and redder, before exploding into violent laughter, giving the poor man quite a shock. Everyone else followed suit, apart from Lily, Remus and I. Lily was a prefect and thought it would be bad example, the same as Remus (even though he’d thought up the idea) and I just wasn’t in the mood. We watched as our classmates rolled around on the floor with fake tears of laughter streaming down their faces. Egbert even managed to pick his nose while laughing, a truly amazing feat. Flitwick just watched us, astounded. I think he’d been shocked dumb. Welcome to a typical day in the life of Marlene McKinnon.
A/N Bonjour my little whimsical ducklings! I have kidnapped the author of this story and turned her into…CHEESE! If you want her back…you’ll have to challenge ME, the Great Baron of Evilness xD (that was fun)
Chapter 3: Confusion
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A/N Oh my rowling, I just had the biggest scare of my entire life. I accidentally deleted the folder with all my stories and drafts and plot developments and chapters in! My chest went tight and my hands were actually shaking until I had the clever idea of ctrl-z, which thankfully worked. Oh my god…never delete a folder guys! NEVER! I need chocolate…
I saw Mary sitting alone by the window. Her figure was silhouetted in the silvery light shining through the glass and her breath had misted against the frosty surface. She was gazing at the snow falling outside and a tear traced its way down her smooth cheek. I felt sad as I watched her, wishing I could find a way to take away the pain that so often plagued her. She seemed to suffer a lot, whether from real or imaginary ghosts I don’t know. I walked over and sat opposite her, leaning my head against the cool window, letting the silence stretch.
Eventually Mary spoke in a cracked voice,
“Snow was our…special thing. Proof to us that muggles could have a bit of magic too. She used to admire how every snowflake was different. ‘Isn’t it amazing? Like magic…’ When we found out we were witches she would laugh at that. Found it so funny. I never did.”
“Life happened. Bad things.”
“She’s…joined…them?” I whispered incredulously. I knew who Mary was talking about; her sister Marcia. Mary and Marcia were an extraordinary case of two twin witch children born to muggles. To heighten that already unusual situation, Marcia was a Slytherin and Mary was a Gryffindor. I had always thought of Marcia as really friendly, the few short times I had met her. Of course, you couldn’t exactly be around people like Mulciber, Lestrange or…Black and remain that way. I couldn’t quite believe it to tell you the truth, but it seemed like Mary was saying that Marcia had joined the Death Eaters, a weird cult-thing that followed You-Know-Who. I wouldn’t have thought they’d let a muggle-born join… But at Mary’s sad nod, I got up and hugged her tightly, trying to convey my sympathy. We sat together like that for several minutes until I realised that we weren’t even particularly close friends. I pulled away, to my own disgust, and Mary went back to gazing out of the window listlessly before speaking quietly, almost to herself,
"I think it's something to do with her secret boyfriend. She won't tell us who he is. If he hurts her..." Mary glared so fiercely at the window I thought the frost might melt right off and drip into her hair. I added Marcia onto my list of people’s buts to kick.
“You are…safe from her aren’t you? She won’t…I don’t know…get you hurt?” I asked cautiously. Mary turned an angry face towards me,
“She’d never do anything like that! She’s my sister! Why don’t you just bugger off McKinnon? I don’t need your false sympathy!” Fresh tears fell down her face but I was annoyed now. I had only been asking out of concern, I had tried to help for Merlin’s sake! I was about to retort fiercely when I remembered that Mary was always changing moods like this. One minute she was sad, then angry, then laughing. It did do my head in a bit. Mary turned away again, pulling at her black hair. I realised that she must have died it black because of what Marcia did. The very awkward silence that followed was thankfully interrupted when a large snowball slammed into the window, making us both jump with surprise. I (cleverly) stuck my head out to see who had thrown it and caught one glimpse of Sirius Black’s irritating face before a very large pile of cold, mushy stuff hit me on the head and I almost fell out of the window.
“Argh! Damn you, Black!” I yelled into the sky waving my arms about as I tried to steady myself. I got the snow out of my eyes and glared down at the Marauders who were laughing, “You are such a vegetable!” Not my best come-back, but still. Sirius looked up at me with wide eyes.
“Do you want to eat me then?” he called up.
“I hate vegetables!”
“Why? Are they too crunchy for you? Would you prefer some chicken breast?”I laughed. This was getting pretty ridiculous. I was about to reply when I saw McGonagall marching towards them angrily and I smirked, “Uh-oh!” By the time they had looked round it was too late and I enjoyed a leisurely five minutes listening to their detentions being dished out before I realised with a stab of guilt that I had forgotten about Mary. I whizzed around but she had vanished. Like magic.
Professor McGonagall had managed to round up all of the 6th years to talk to us in her Very Serious Voice about those Flu Vacsinashon-thingies. It was never a great idea to get all of the Gryffindors in the same room together, never mind the whole year. Add in talking about a Highly Frightening Subject and you have a recipe for disaster. Sirius was chatting up Dorcas Meadows, a pretty Ravenclaw, who I felt sorry for as she would probably be murdered by Emmeline Vance in a second for even trying. It was depressing how sought-after Sirius was. I can’t pretend he didn’t encourage it a bit though. Edgar Bones and Benjy Fenwick were giving each other dark looks. Mary wasn’t talking to me and was studiously ignoring Marcia. Amelia Bones was pestering me with stupid facts and figures. I tried not to look over at the Slytherins. It was too painful. The only cheerful thing about this was that we were missing potions, although I actually liked potions.
McGonagall strode into the room and surveyed us. She had her no-arguing face on which worried me greatly. Visions of six foot long needles and arms falling off filled my head and I gripped Remus’s arm to stop myself hyperventilating. I think I was actually shaking. Yeah, I have a very low pain threshold.
“The Vaccinations,” she began and everyone held their breath, “Have been cancelled, due to the muggle methods being proven unsafe for those with magical blood,” A loud cheer erupted, “However, the Headmaster has asked me to remind you that this disease called ‘Flu’ can be highly dangerous. Leaflets will be pinned up in the House Common Rooms with instructions on ways to stay safer and healthier.” I was pretty annoyed-all this fuss for nothing. Hmph. At least there was no torturous needle waiting for me in St. Mungo’s though. I grabbed Lily as everyone surged out of the classroom.
We walked aimlessly around the corridors for a while, Lily stopped every now and then to help a lost first year. Aw.
“I wonder how they were proved unsafe?” Lily wondered out loud.
“Who cares,” I shrugged. I told her about Mary and she seemed really upset. I think the situation reminded her of Snape, a greasy-haired Slytherin who Lily had been close friends with until last year. I thought he was an ok person, until he was with his little Slytherin gang. Sometimes a person can be changed by the people they’re with. He really hurt Lily though, so he is now at the bottom of my little list of people I like. I have a lot of lists at the moment! I feel almost scholarly.
“What’ve we got next, then?” I asked.
“Muggle Studies,” Lily seemed far away. I yawned; Muggle Studies was pretty pointless,
“I wish we could just wipe the memories of all our teachers! They’d forget about lessons and we could just have a party!” I squealed. Lily laughed,
“Maybe we should do that on our last day. For now, Muggle Studies!” Then she dragged me off to lessons. Workaholic, anyone?
“Superwoman Lily Evans comes to save the day with her battle cry ‘Muggle Studiessss!’ and her lethal quill because of course the pen is mightier than the sword!” I described her battle scene in detail, including how she pulled me upon a vampire desk and fought off the evilness of James Potter with merely a quill and the braveness of her heart!
“Are you even listening to my story?” I demanded as I was dragged along. No answer. Oh for Merlin’s sake, why do I even bother?
Then I saw. Two people were kissing furiously in an alcove to the right that must have previously held a suit of armour or something, their bodies meshed together, lips moving passionately. I wrinkled my nose in disgust; why can’t they go somewhere a little more private instead of putting on a lovely, public display. People who almost wanted others to see them engaged in sexual activities really annoyed me.
I was about to drag Lily on when I realised who the people were. Regulus Black and Marcia MacDonald. My body turned to ice. Regulus…how could he? I tried to turn my head away, disgusted, but it didn’t want to move. I’d thought he was a better person than this. But then again, I wasn’t very good at thinking. Poor Mary. Poor Marcia. Although not so much. There he goes again, splitting up families. Marcia obviously didn’t know what she was getting herself into. I hadn’t. I didn’t regret it though. I even half wished that I was still with him, in Marcia’s place right now. But I tried to brush the thought out of my mind. Regulus wasn’t good for me, I knew that at least. He convinced me do things. Bad things. The room started to sway. I knew we were over but to have it thrust in my face like this? I wanted to collapse to the floor but I forced my knees to hold. Regulus never liked weakness.
I realised that my whole body was shaking as I stood, gazing at the back of my ex’s head. The first person I had ever truly loved. I’d thought he’d loved me back. Until he became a Death Eater. He broke my heart, and now he was going to do the same thing to Marcia. Lucky sod. Lily’s gentle touch brought me back to reality. She was the only person who had known about Regulus and I. Maybe she’d understand. But I should definitely be over him by now. My throat closed up as I picked up my bag, ready for a quick exit when Regulus turned round, realising that someone was there. Our eyes locked. What did I see in his? Nothing. His face was an inscrutable mask; he didn’t care. And that did it. I ran. Hell, he scared me more than any Dark Lord.
I didn’t know where I was. I didn’t care. There was a random picture of a pig eating chocolate in front of me, and I focused on the chocolate. I sat in front of the picture, wrapping my arms around my legs as if it could shield me from him, make sure he didn’t find me here. The pig snorted at me and I told him I’d eat his chocolate if he did that again. I heard him come and stand behind me. His arms were probably folded and he would be leaning against the opposite wall lazily. I waited.
“You ran.” It was a statement that required no answer, so I stayed quiet, hoping that he would stop tempting fate. It was taking all my willpower not to turn and look at his perfect face. He was perfect, like Lily Evans.
“You were practically having sex with MacDonald.”
“And you care about that…why exactly?” his voice was smooth like silk. I jumped up and glared at him,
“You tempted her into your little cult, Black! You’ve ruined Mary’s life, and her’s!”
“Mary’s not even your friend. You find her disturbing most of the time.” I hated him so much! Look at him, standing there, stating facts about me that I hadn’t even realised were true.
“Just go away, I’m late for lessons,” I muttered. He walked off without a backwards glance.
The pig snorted again. I kicked the painting. The pig ran off. Good stress reliever, that.
A/N Ok, I know that was quite a busy and short chapter, but it has to be! You’ll see… Thanks for reading again xD Love you guys so much! Oh and the reaosn I can actually update, despite NaNo-ing, is that I've already written loads of chapters ahead. :) x
Chapter 4: Professor McKinnon
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chapter image by me
I tried to creep into the Muggle Studies classroom unnoticed. It didn’t work. Professor Turrell noticed me.
“It appears that Miss. McKinnon thinks that she can get away with being late. Maybe she thinks that a different set of rules apply to her and her alone?” What an old fart. I straightened up and sighed audibly. This just made Turrell even more annoyed,
“Come and stand at the front, Miss McKinnon,” he ordered and I reluctantly trudged up and leant against his desk with my arms folded. I didn’t really care at the moment. I saw some people sniggering at me and I felt like chucking them out a window. That would be fun. Lily kept glancing at me confusedly and I felt slightly bad for running off like that. But she was the only one who had known about me and Regulus, so at least she might understand more than anyone else. I realised Turrell had been speaking to me about something for the last five minutes and was waiting for an answer, so I quickly said something like,
“OK,” and everyone burst out laughing. “What?” I asked. Emmeline Vance a prickly hedgehog of a girl grinned happily at me from her seat in the front row,
“Professor Turrell was just wondering whether you might like to take over teaching his lesson and see how it felt for pupils to be constantly coming in late,” she simpered. What was her problem? I laughed a bit myself when I realised what I’d said and was about to go and sit down when James piped up from the back of the classroom,
“But Professor, she agreed to your proposal! You have to let her take the lesson now!” Turrell looked completely confused at this point and I was mouthing at James to shut up. Unfortunately, the rest of the class had decided that I would be a much better teacher than Turrell and were now pressuring him to let me teach. Bloody hell, how did I end up in this mess? Oh yeah, Regulus. Damn him. I half hoped that Turrell would find some grand authority and shout the others down but he is really a very weak chested man. So I found myself at the front of a classroom, supposedly teaching a class about Muggles. I looked pleadingly at Lily for help but she was looking at me sternly. She’d never approved of my little secret with Regulus and now was punishing me. I sighed again melodramatically and surveyed the class.
“Erm…ok. Get into groups of three,” I ordered, frantically racking my brains for something to do with them. I rummaged through my bag and felt around for…anything. I felt a squishy thingy and pulled out my fluffy toy rabbit Tiggly Biggly Boggles the Carrot-Eater. I loved Tiggly, I’d had him (or was it a her? I’d never thought about a gender before) since I was two. A gift from my parents. I hugged Tiggly tightly and breathed in the familiar smell. I liked to imagine that a faint trace of my parents was still left on him. People laughed at me and I turned Tiggly round and waved his little paw at them, grinning.
“Nice toy, professor!” commented Sirius. I nodded Tiggly’s head up and down then stuffed him back in my bag. Then I had a truly brilliant, evil, amazing idea. I clapped my hands together to get the class’s attention.
“Right then!” I put on my Evil Planning face, “I think we need to get a taste of how hard it is for the poor muggles having to do everything without magic. Can anyone give me an example of boring jobs that muggles have to do, that would take us about half a second?” There were giggles and a few hands shot up. I picked Emmeline. She giggled,
“They have to peel potatoes,” she suggested, glancing at Sirius through her eyelashes.
“They sure do! Now why don’t you be a good student and pop down to the kitchens to get some potatoes and a potato peeler,” I said in a patronising voice. Emmeline looked horrified, as did everyone else, as they realised what I had in mind for them. This was going to be such fun!
“Mr. Black!” I called and he looked scared, “Another suggestion please?” He gulped,
“Good little student! Now pop over to lovely Professor Filch and grab some paint and a brush!” He didn’t move so I picked up a ruler and thwacked it on his desk, “There is a type of muggle punishment called caning you know…” He ran out of the door.
“Basically my lovelies, you are all going to be my muggle, magic-less slaves for the day!” I explained, “So you can all set about sweeping the classroom, getting me chocolates and cleaning the windows. Chop chop!” I thwacked my ruler on the desk menacingly and watched with satisfaction as everyone scurried about. I got Sirius and Remus repainting the rather boring old classroom walls bright pink, while Emmeline Vance broke about a thousand nails peeling potatoes. I let Lily off and said she could be my partner in crime, but she wouldn’t speak to me. Mary kept shooting me dirty looks too as she scrubbed the desks. I just ordered some more chocolate. After a while though, it got a bit boring ordering everyone about and behaving like the Mistress Bitch, so I gave in and we had a ‘Muggle Picnic’ on the floor which soon turned into a ‘Muggle Food Fight.’ An apple hit me on the head which hurt. So I chucked a chair at the person who threw it-Emmeline. Hmm, maybe a chair was overkill as you couldn’t really count it as a food. I suppose it was food for a goat though. Eventually Turrell realised that this class had got a bit out of hand (talk about slow), so he made us stop. He kind of waved his wand and we all froze mid action. I need to learn how to do that spell! I could do the classic putting pointy things under feet and drawing moustaches on in permanent ink! Then he chucked us out of his class and we all spilled outside, using up the last of the fake snow the Marauders had made. That had been a pretty crazy lesson. At least it had taken my mind off things…
I sat under a tree feeling depressed and bored. I sat there for about an hour. I really got to know the tree. I think his name was ‘Crrrreaaakkk’ or something of that sort. I don’t really speak tree. I banged my head against the trunk telling myself to snap out of it. Seriously, who talks to trees? Am I going mad? I was pretty relieved to see Lily sitting next to me when I’d finished with the random banging.
“I’m going mad Lils! The tree said it was called Creak and then I tried to teach myself tree language, but I’m just so crap at everything that I couldn’t learn it in time,” I wailed to her. Lily sighed,
“We need to talk Marls. How come we don’t tell each other as much as we used to? I never knew you still liked Regulus.”
“I don’t!” I glared. Why did she have to mention that subject. I hate Regulus.
“You so do!” Lily slapped my ankle.
“Ow!” I protested, “No need for violence, woman!”
“Well you were killing that tree with your abnormally large head earlier. That’s hardly fair, is it? Poor Creaky.”
“I have an average sized head actually!”
“Back on topic? What are you going to do about it?” Lily is really very irritating. Although, maybe I do still like Regulus a tiny bit. When he told me he was joining the Death Eaters I thought I would hate him. But I don’t; he’s not evil. He’s tough and gorgeous on the outside but on the inside he’s like a helpless but very sexy lost puppy. And I love puppies. Especially lost ones.
“I don’t know. He’s in pretty deep with the Death Eaters now, Lily. I can’t exactly start dating him again. He doesn’t even want me.” Lily smiled sadly. I don’t know why she smiled though. “I don’t think he’s truly bad though. It just doesn’t seem right…” I trailed off.
“Honey, I think you need a rebound,” suggested Lily. But what has happened to my Lily? What alien has stolen her mind? A rebound?
“Like…go out with a random person just to quench my sexual desires?” I asked, horrified.
“Yep. Now I’ve got to go and finish some homework. I’ll see you later, Marls.” Lily stood up and brushed snow off her bum. It landed in my hair and I sneezed. I didn’t mind though because I was just happy that Lily was speaking to me again. When she had gone I chuckled to myself. Lily talking about rebounds. Ha! I wandered down to the Black Lake and pulled off my funky star-striped socks. The water was freezing but warmed up when my feet were covered in the deliciously squelchy mud in the shallow areas. I sat for ages, just thinking about the universe, my parents and Tiggly Biggly Boggles the Carrot-Eater. I wished he was here. I wish my mum was here. There I go again, wishing for impossibilities.
It started to rain and I shivered, but I didn’t feel like going inside. Nature was refreshing! Mary was right, there was a certain magic about it. I opened my mouth and let the water trickle into it. It made me feel les fuzzy. The Lake had massive waves raging across it and the sky went rather dark. There were strange noises from the Forbidden Forest on my left. What a cheesy name for a forest! And suddenly, it wasn’t so nice out here. A sound from behind made me scream and spin round too fast. With a plunging feeling in my stomach I was falling backwards into the murky depths of the Lake. The cold gripped my chest like iron bands and seaweed tangled round my legs. I thought of the horrible fish that must be lurking down here, just waiting to eat my toes and I started to panic and thrash about wildly. Help! My mind was screaming out. Strong arms grabbed my waste and legs and lifted me out as if I was weightless. I gripped onto that arm as hard as I could, feeling pretty pathetic at that moment. Especially as I realised I’d only splashed into the shallow end. Lightning crackled overhead. Isn’t that just so cliché? The brave warrior saves the damsel in distress…The person put me on the ground. I didn’t look up at who had ‘saved me,’ but I knew who I thought it was. I hung in indecision. What would I say to him? Why did he do it? I looked; it was Remus. Of course it wasn’t Regulus, he would have let me drown. Why was I kidding myself? But for a moment there I had imagined I was in some kind of romantic movie, where Regulus realised that the only thing he really wanted was…me. But now he had Marcia. And I had Lupino Supremo.
Nevertheless, I smiled at Lupin gratefully,
“Thanks Reems. Pretty…stupid of me, huh?” My teeth were chattering together.
“Just a bit,” he smiled back and helped me up, “What were you doing out here anyway Marls?”
“Just…thinking about stuff,” I answered, “What about you?”
“Thinking..about stuff,” he muttered back. Our eyes met. It was really scary; his eyes were exactly the same shade of brown as Regulus’s. Flecked with gold. The rain kept falling. The world carried on turning. So why did I feel so…strange? I started coughing violently and Remus knelt down next to me, worried.
“You need to get inside,” he ordered, then picked me up again. I felt pretty awkward but so what? I was getting a free ride back up to the castle. I snuggled into his chest. How did he stay so warm when everything else was freezing?
“You’re really warm,” I murmered, “Like toast.” He laughed quietly.
Who would have thought this morning that I, Marlene McKinnon, would have become a Professor, realised I still liked a Death Eater, fallen in a lake then get carried home by Remus Lupin. Oh, and make Mary hate me. Oh, no…Mary didn’t know about Regulus and Marcia. Oopsy-daisy. Remus felt me stiffen,
“Oh…” I considered telling him. For some reason I felt really calm round Remus. Maybe I’d tell him half the truth, “Lily and I saw Marcia, Mary’s sister, snogging Regulus Black earlier today. I’d forgotten that we hadn’t told Mary yet. She’ll hate us…even more.”
“Oh…so?” I sighed in exasperation. He was not good with relationship stuff,
“So, Regulus obviously lured Marcia into joining the Death Eaters, thus ruining her life, and Mary’s. Mary is distraught that her sister left her. Marcia will eventually get cold feet or be discarded and get murdered.” Remus didn’t say anything. He was probably analysing the information or something. He was such a nerd. In a cute way.
“You’re such a nerd Reems,” I grinned. He looked pretty happy at my accusation. Strange boy. We’d reached the Entrance Hall by now, and I was thankful for the soft lights and warmth flowing into me. I acted on a sudden impulse and hugged Remus. In a friendly way, of course.
“Thanks for saving me, batman,” I said into his chest. He hugged me back warmly,
“Catwoman? I’m Vegetable Lady!” I pretended to be offended.
“But catwoman is sexier.”
“Nuh-uh, I think vegetables are very sexy.” Remus pulled out of the hug,
“Is that why you called Sirius one, then?” he asked.
“No-Remus-“ I said to his back as he started to walk up the stairs. He didn’t turn round again. Screw my life! I’m never saying the word vegetable again. Vegetables are evil. I didn’t get what Remus was so upset about though. It was just a joke.
I stumbled up to my dormitory, feeling very cold. On the inside and the outside. The girls were all awake. Mary was crying. Alice was trying to make her stop. Lily wasn’t sure what to do with herself. She saw me and let out a sigh of relief,
“Where’ve you been Marls? Why do you look like a drowned fish?”
“Fish can’t drown,” I reminded her, then shuddered. I hate fish, “I fell in the Lake and Remus…saved me.” I signalled to Lily that I’d tell her more later.
“I would hug you…but you’re wet.”
“Medal for stating the obvious,” I flopped onto the bed wearily, “Why’s Mary crying?”
“I told her about Regulus and Marcia.”
“Phew. I thought I’d have to do it!”
“Selfish,” Lily insulted me to the best of her ability.
“I’m off for a shower!” I stripped off my smelly, muddy, seaweed covered clothes and stepped into the lovely hot water. It stung my back and made my hands swell from the sudden temperature change but I didn’t care. I was worried about myself. About how I managed to hurt people without realising. About how I never thought before I acted. About how I keep thinking about how Remus and Regulus have the same eyes. About how I keep wishing for impossible things. Lily was right, big surprise. I need a rebound. But who?
A/N Hey! Please tell me what you think about this chapter. I’m slightly worried about parts of it and I’d appreciate feedback. Oh, and I need a name for a very angry hippogriff. Any suggestions? -LWG x
Chapter 5: Waffles, Quaffles and Madness
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Disclaimer: (because I haven’t done one in a while) I don’t own Harry Potter or any objects, characters etc that you recognise from the Harry Potter books. I own the plot, that’s all! The amazing J K Rowling has done most of the work here. :D Okey dokey, that’s me done.
People think that because I can’t cry, I’m heartless. But I’m not! I’m not some kind of ‘Ice Witch.’ Well actually, I am a witch but that’s irrelevant. You see, not being able to cry is a huge disadvantage in life. You can’t make people feel guilty by sobbing all over them. You have no way to let out emotion, like I wanted to last night. I feel almost claustrophobic because I still get the same feeling that comes before crying but without the tears, which are the best bit. Remus calls them ‘Oesophagature spasms’ and I pretend to understand what that means.
Anyway, this morning I was feeling a lot of self pity, so I had a lie in. When Lily yelled at me to get moving I tried to make snuffly noises that were supposed to imitate crying.
“You can’t cry Marls,” Lily ripped open the hangings and poked me. That girl knows me too well. I’m scared.
“Urgh! Show a little sympathy for a poor suffering woman!”
“No,” Lily replied. Dang. Then she committed the worst crime possible…she kidnapped Tiggly Biggly Boggles the Carrot-Eater!
“Noooooo!” I moaned, trying to snatch him back. She dangled him by the tail. I could hear him screaming out in pain!
“Ok! I’m getting up now!” I hauled myself out of bed, snatched Tiggly back and snuggled him against my chest. I glared at Lily,
“Sadistic teddy-killer!” She chucked me my hairbrush. I couldn’t be bothered to make my bed as beautifully as Lily does, so I drew the hangings back around it and pretended the mess wasn’t there. It worked, actually! I put my trunk on my bed too so that didn’t look messy either. Out of sight, out of mind as someone said at some point. I think it may have been my dad. Mary got up. I hoped she’d forgiven me.
“How’d you sleep?” I asked tentatively.
“Really well until I woke up,” she snapped. Fair enough.
“What day is it today?” I wondered, trying to remember what colours I wore on…
“Friday, also there’s a Hogsmeade trip tomorrow,” answered Lily automatically. She just has to answer questions. Right! Blue stuff today. I pulled out sparkly blue eye shadow, lip gloss and dark blue mascara. Then some little blue teddy bear earrings. And just to add some interest I wore a massive sky blue bow in my hair. Then a blue bag. And shoes. I did a twirl for the girls,
“How do I look?”
“Heavenly,” replied Lily sarcastically, “and I love how you’re wearing all of my things.” I stuck my tongue out at her. It was obvious that she was just jealous of my colour co-ordination skills. Now for a long, relaxing breakfast! I started elegantly descending the stairs, thinking about toast and whatnot, when I saw Regulus leaning against the banister at the bottom. My breath caught. Had he seen me?
“Has blue thrown up on you, McKinnon?” he asked lazily. So he has seen me. Interesting.
“I think the colour blue is quite flattering on me, to be honest,” I sniffed.
“Keep telling yourself that.”
“What do you want?”
“Nothing. You assume that because I was at the bottom of these stairs that I was waiting for you. I was just waiting here for Severus.” I flushed slightly.
“Goodbye, then. I’m going to have some yummy slices of toast now,” I announced. I just wanted to get away. As I walked past, he touched my wrist gently and I stopped. He pulled me towards him. Delicious shivers went up my spine from the place where his fingers were resting. This was why he was bad for me; at his touch I melted like butter and would do anything. His lips entranced me as he spoke softly,
“You always want to get away from me, Marlene.” A tiny sigh escaped my mouth and he gazed at me for a moment. Time stood still. Then an image of Marcia and the Dark Mark swam into my head, and using all my willpower I shoved him away,
“Why do you say things like that, Regulus? You hate me now. We’re over. I hate you too,” I whispered sadly before walking off towards the Great Hall again. I tried not to look back. I thought that maybe I’d seen a hint of regret in his fathomless eyes. As soon as he was out of sight, I ran. I’m quite a good runner now. It’s all this practice.
I hate quaffles. I mean, for a start what kind of a name is quaffle? Like a flying waffle with a q- stuck on the front. Qwaffle. And you can’t even eat this type. Then there’s the whole thing about trying to stop other people chucking them through the three big hoops while being yelled at by James Potter and Sirius Black just because they like exercising their vocal chords too much. Oh joy. I saw one of the chasers, Toby Williams, driving up the pitch towards me, a grim look of determination on his face. Ok people, driving is just an expression. He was flying. Anyway, I started to get a little bit nervous as everyone stopped their individual training to watch little old me. I gripped my broom tightly. I’d managed to buy a nimbus second hand with some of the money my parents left me in Gringotts. Until I turn 17, however, I can’t access all the money, which means I am poor for another year. Williams glared at me. Seriously, he is a very aggressive person. He glares at you if you even look at his shoes. I always thought he’d be better suited to be a beater but hey, who am I to question. I focused my mind on the ball. Everything else was gone except for that one thought. Williams and I locked gazes and I smiled sweetly at him. He glared. So rude! He dodged to the left but I predicted the feint and stayed where I was. Then he flew up as high as possible and started spinning in circles over my head. I followed him easily. He then proceeded to drop the quaffle. Clever. James flew up looking stressed and furious. He started yelling at Williams who yelled back. Both of them were flailing their arms about wildly. It was pretty funny but started to hurt my ears, so I spiralled down to the ground. I got the feeling that practice was over.
I changed out of my Quidditch robes quickly and locked my broom away. I had a muggle bike lock for my broom which everyone found hilarious for some reason. I wondered what to do with the rest of the evening; Lily was at a ‘Slug Club’ meeting. Bah! I don’t see why Sluggy couldn’t invite me for once. I could find Mary and make up with her? Remus? Alice? Creaky? Oh, the possibilities.
On my way out I was confronted by Daniel Wood, another chaser on the team. He’d had a crush on me for ages.
“Hey Marls,” he said cheerfully. He was always cheerful. It was sickening. “That was pretty hilarious, what Toby did, huh?”
“So, I was wondering, do you want to come into Hogsmeade with me tomorrow?” he asked eagerly. I sighed and was about to say no, when I thought about what Lily had suggested with rebounds. I looked Wood up and down. He was pretty good looking, fit from Quidditch. And his cheerfulness might keep me more optimistic or at least distract me.
“Erm…sure!” I said brightly. He looked over the moon.
“See you at the Three Broomsticks then?” I nodded. I knew it was bad. I knew I was using him. But I couldn’t back out now, could I? I remembered my mum telling me to always do what was right. But how can you do the right thing when so many people could get hurt, whichever way you choose? I carried on walking. I remembered that Hagrid had some baby unicorns in. I’d go and pay them a visit.
When I got down to Hagrid’s hut, I saw him talking to a Ravenclaw 7th year. I think his name was Zenophilpots Lovegood or something. Apparently he was mad, but he didn’t look mad to me. He was nice looking with dirty blonde hair and eyes so blue that I could see them sparkling from where I was standing. Hagrid saw me and waved. I smiled and waved back, coming over to talk to the pair. Lovegood looked at me interestedly,
“You’re Marlene McKinnon,” he said. I was surprised he knew my name. I smiled,
“Yes. How did you know?”
“Everyone knows who you are,” he answered vaguely.
“Oh…” I was a little taken aback, “And you’re…?”
“Xenophilius Lovegood. Ravenclaw. Wit beyond measure is man’s greatest treasure,” he sang. Ok…
“Can I call you Xeno? It’s just that Xenophilipotus is quite a mouthful.”
“Sure, Xeno’s fine. Lots of people get muddled with my name. Do you want to help me feed the unicorns?”
“Er…sure. What do they eat?”
“Well it depends what mood they’re in or what age they are really. Unicorns can eat most things. These ones are only babies so we’ll give them warm milk.” We walked down to the field where the beautiful, white creatures were playing happily. I watched as two of the little ones gambolled about like lambs or puppies.
“They’re adorable!” I whispered so that I didn’t startle them.
“Oh, no. They’re quite fierce animals,” came Xeno’s dreamy voice, “They can bite off your arm in a playful snap. Accidentally, of course. Want to come and stroke them?” I was a tad put off at this point. I didn’t fancy living without arms for the rest of my life, but I climbed into the pen behind Xeno. A tiny unicorn that only came up to my knee regarded me warily. I held out the bowl of milk.
“Don’t eat me!” I warned it. The Unicorn snorted. I think the little bugger was laughing at me! Grr. It started happily licking up milk with a tiny white tongue.
“That one’s called Starlight,” Xenophilius told me.
“Why are unicorns white?” I suddenly asked.
“Well unicorns came from the white tips of waves. They rose out of the sea aeons ago, and are made of pure sea magic.” I was quite interested now,
“So there are different types of magic? I’ve never heard of sea magic before.”
“Yes. Elemental magic. It’s quite rare and very powerful. I sense some in you, actually.”
“Quite a strong tie…” Xeno trailed off, staring at something in the bushes, “Oh my!” he gasped fearfully. I looked at the bush and saw a little rat looking at us intently. It seemed to be able to understand us. I moved forwards to pick it up, when Xeno warned me,
“Stop! It is the fearsome Blibberdung! A rare and very poisonous creature that inhabits woodland areas.”
“But it’s a rat!” I laughed. Xeno was awesome. I picked it up by the tail and showed it to him.
“Astonishing!” he murmured, “That was a brave and reckless thing to do Marlene McKinnon.” I let the creature go.
“Not really. Although maybe that rat had the plague…” I checked my armpits for buboes hurriedly. Nope, all clear. Phew. I turned back to Xeno who was munching on watermelons. Lord knows where he got them from.
“Want some?” he asked and I shook my head,
“I don’t actually like watermelons, they just look nice.” Xeno nodded, understanding,
“The seeds make excellent necklaces.” I grinned. I noticed that he had no shoes on.
“What happened to your shoes?”
“I like going around with no shoes. If cavemen could do it then why can’t I.” I kicked my shoes off too. Mud squelched up between my toes and I wriggled them happily. I ran around in circles, relishing the feeling of rebelliousness that came with defying the basic human nature of wearing shoes.
“This feels great!” I proclaimed. I knew I probably looked madder than he was at this moment but I didn’t care. Xeno smiled. I saw that the sun was sinking. I’d better get back and find Lily or she’d think I was jumping in the Lake again.
“I’ve gotta go now,” I explained, “But I’ll see you again, yeah?” Xeno shrugged,
“Maybe. It was nice meeting you Marlene McKinnon. You’re a nice person. You’ll always do the right thing.” He walked back up to Hagrid’s hut, leaving me wondering what he meant.
I carried my shoes as I walked back up to the castle, feeling really happy for the first time in ages. What was it about Xenophilius Lovegood? He was quite mad, that much was obvious. But it was attractive. I chuckled to myself; Blibberdungs! Honestly. That was it, his honesty. You didn’t often find that in people, it was usually always secrets and lies. I was imagining that I had a pet Blibberdung called Blibby and feeling like a watermelon sandwich when I heard my name being hissed from behind a statue. I turned to see Marcia MacDonald pointing her wand at me casually. Wait…what? I stepped backwards,
“What do you want, Marcia?” I tried to be nice for Mary’s sake. I really did! But Marcia isn’t actually that friendly anymore. I mean, she was pointing a wand at me for Merlin’s sake. Plus she had taken Regulus. But Regulus hadn’t been mine in the first place. Damn, this was so confusing! Where’s Xeno when you need him? Marcia spoke,
“I’ve come to warn you.” I couldn’t help noticing that she was taller than me. I felt like that little rat. Just not so rat-like or furry.
“That’s nice of you,” I smiled sweetly, drawing my own wand sharply.
“Stay away from Regulus. I know your history with him. And frankly honey, if you even look at him again you’ll wish you were never born,” Marcia inspected her nails, “’Cos I can kinda make that happen. Imagine if say...people started to hear things about you. Hm?” I gaped in shock. Blackmail! No-one blackmails me and gets away with it. Angrily I advanced towards her and she smirked amusedly.
“Well do you want to know something honey?” I fumed, “Regulus will never be yours. He was mine first and always will be. You’re his rebound.” I watched Marcia’s face flash through several emotions; aghast, fearful then angry. I smiled, “Hurts, doesn’t it? He’ll hurt you even more in the end.” I turned and began to walk away, carrying my shoes. I hoped that Marcia wouldn’t shoot a spell at me from behind. My good mood had gone. That's what happens when I know I've just been a mega bitch to someone.
I met Remus on the stairs up to the Common Room. We awkwardly walked back up together. I guess last night was still on our minds. Before we went inside Remus began,
“Look, I’m sorry for overreacting like that last night. I don’t know what got into me.”
“It was pretty strange,” I agreed, looking anywhere but at him.
“Can you forgive me?”
“How can I refuse those puppy dog eyes,” I sighed. But I felt better. We gave the password and climbed through the portrait together. I was very happy to see Lily and Alice chatting quietly on the sofa. I rushed over to Lily and gave her a massive hug. I nearly strangled her.
“Nice to…see you too… Marls!” she spluttered. I jumped on the sofa with them and curled up into a ball next to her.
“Why haven’t you got your shoes on?” Lily asked.
“If cavemen could go about without shoes then so can I,” I declared to the whole Common Room happily. People stared at me and I just wiggled my muddy toes. Then I told Lily about Xeno Lovegood,
“He’s pretty awesome. Mad in a refreshing way. Nice looking too.” Lily giggled,
“Why don’t you go to Hogsmeade with him tomorrow then?”
“Can’t. I’m going with Daniel Wood! Anyway, I couldn’t think about Xeno in that way.”
“Daniel Wood? Why? Oh I see…rebound,” she looked disapproving which was completely unfair,
“Lily you suggested a rebound in the first place! Don’t judge me like that.”
“Well, you’re getting mud on my skirt,” Lily complained, tactfully changing the subject.
“It’s an improvement,” I explained, “My latest art project.”
“Is the picture meant to resemble your face? ‘Cos you’re succeeding.” Lily replied, giggling. I pouted grumpily and traced my lips,
“I have a very kissable face apparently, Evans!”
“Oh and who told you that, McKinnon?”
“Regu-“ I stopped and covered my mouth. Lily and I glanced at Alice who was looking at us interestedly. Nosy parker.
“Oh, Regulanglio!” nodded Lily knowingly, “I remember him.” You know for a prefect, Lily is amazingly good at lying. Not even a blush there! I applaud her.
A/N Ok I admit it! Xenophilius Lovegood wasn’t at Hogwarts at this time (I don’t think he was anyway…) But I really wanted to put him in it! I’m toying with the idea of Marlene/Xeno at some point… Nah, just kidding!
Chapter 6: Isn't This Fun?
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I’d like to take a moment to thank whoever it was that invented beds; there are so many amazing things you can do with them. You can sleep comfortably, instead of having to make do with a cave or whatever humanity did before Mr. Bed Inventor came along. You can have pillow fights and use it as a trampoline. You can dump all your mess onto it and draw the curtains so you don’t have to make your poor eyes suffer. And most importantly, you can burrow down into the mattress and wrap the covers tightly round your body and hide from the world when you’ve managed to make everything go wrong yet again. Daniel Wood? What was I thinking?
“Marlene McKinnon, you come out of that bed right now!” sighed Lily from somewhere way outside my cocoon of blankets.
“It’s all your fault!” I yelled back in a slightly muffled voice, “You started talking about rebounds and all that shit!”
“Well you don’t have to always be such a drama queen about everything!” yelled Lily, yanking the blanket off.
“Hey! I’m only wearing my underwear!” I grabbed the blanket back and we wrestled over it, probably for too long to be cool. There was a loud ripping noise and it split in two, showering us with feathers and jellybeans. Lily wrinkled her nose,
“Ew! Why are the school filling our blankets with…that?” I picked a jellybean up off the floor and popped it in my mouth,
“Yum.” Lily pretended to be sick and tossed the remains of my beloved blanket on top of me.
“Who are you going to Hogsmeade with then?” I asked with a cheeky wink, “Jimbo? Jamie-poo? Jimmy boy?” Lily sniffed primly,
“Certainly not! I’ll probably wander around with Mary and Alice for a while, until you eventually come running to me.”
“I’ll be running, but in the opposite direction to you.” Lily mock glared and started brushing her hair as I began moaning like a wounded animal and ripping my blanket into even smaller pieces.
“Shut up and get dressed. He might not even turn up.” I snorted,
“He’s been in love with me forever. He’ll be there.”
“Don’t flatter yourself. He fancies you.”
“He loves me!”
“Psh!” I flaunted into the bathroom and turned on the shower, “loves me!”
I ambled as randomly and slowly as possible all the way down to the Three Broomsticks. I usually ran down here, excited to start window shopping, but I had to go and ruin everything. What would Daniel want me to call him? Danny? Dan-Dan? I started to feel really sick.
It looked like he’d been waiting for me for a long time, because his lips had turned blue and he had frost in his hair. I approached cautiously before shrieking in what I hoped was an enthusiastic voice,
“Hi Dan!” He leapt out of his skin but soon recovered when he saw who it was, and grinned happily,
“M…marls! You l…look beaut…beautiful,” his teeth wouldn’t stop chattering. I looked down at the ugliest pink denim skirt I owned with a bright yellow top and bogey green coat. Wow he is either blind, or colour blind.
“Aw. That’s sweet. How long have you been out here then? You look freezing!”
“Only an…hour or s…so.”
“But you were way too early!” I protested, even though he was not at fault whatsoever, “Let’s go get a drink then, before you freeze!” I thought I was doing pretty well at being enthusiastic about this date. Daniel beamed at me and took my hand. He led me over to a table for two in a dark corner of the Three Broomsticks.
“So how’s your day been?” he asked, pulling out a chair for me and taking my coat, folding it neatly.
“Until you met me, of course!” he smiled and laughed. I joined in. Funny. I checked the clock. We’d been together for 3 minutes and 50 seconds exactly. How time flies when you’re having fun. There was a silence between us as we each drank deeply from the Butterbeer bottles.
“Isn’t this fun?” he beamed. He wasn’t kidding.
“Very,” I nodded, my thoughts starting to drift.
“Looking forward to the first Quidditch match of the season then? I’ve been training over the summer too, so I’m in really good shape. I think we’ve got a great chance of beating Slytherin!” I’d forgotten that our first match was against Slytherin. We had to beat them. That’d show Regulus that maybe he wasn’t quite so perfect all the time. It wasn’t in our favour though.
“Ha!” I scoffed, “We haven’t beaten them in the last three years.”
“Come on, be optimistic!”
“No that’s your job, isn’t it.” Oops. I hadn’t meant it to come out quite like that. You bitch, McKinnon!
“I’m sorry, pardon?”
“Nothing.” Ok, this was the moment. Time to end things before they got too serious,
“Daniel. I’m really, really sorry to tell you this but,” I took a swig of Butterbeer to steady my nerves, “I was kind of using this date as a way to get over someone. That wasn’t fair of me, so I think we should stop now before we get in too…deep.” As I had been talking, Daniel’s face had paled and his eyes had started to well up with tears. Dear God, please don’t cry on me! I prayed fervently. That would just not be fair if he got to use the ‘make them feel guilty by crying’ thing when I will never have the chance! Instead of crying, he drank the rest of the Butterbeer in one gulp and broke out into a coughing fit.
“That wasn’t a…nice thing to do Marls, but if it was the only way you could get over someone, then so be it,” he shook his head disappointedly. I could barely believe my ears-he was still being optimistic! You had to sort of admire it; he was taking this really well. He went on,
“Who was it?”
“Who were you getting over?”
“Oh, Reg-Remus,” I hastily corrected my mistake.
“Remus Lupin? The nerdy Marauder?” he smirked, which really didn’t suit him. Obviously he was now trying to act ‘cool’ and ‘bothered.’ I glared at him. It was only ok when I called Reems a nerd.
“How many other Remus’s do you know?” I asked bluntly, then added, “That was a rhetorical question by the way.” For some reason Daniel then burst out laughing, spraying Butterbeer in my face. I grimaced and wiped it off.
“Aren’t you precious!” he chuckled, “I do love you!” What did I do? I really couldn’t cope with people proclaiming their love for me in the middle of a pub right now though, so I quickly stood up and put my coat back on.
“Be seeing you, Daniel.” I left him gazing forlornly after me.
The only thought on my mind was to find Lily. I was focusing upon this so much that I didn’t actually look where I was going. I liked the way the snow parted with a soft crunch to make way for my foot. No-one else had a foot shaped quite like mine. Everyone is unique. It’s the one thing we all have in common. A shiny object on the ground caught my attention. I paused to pick it up and examined it closely. I recognised it; it was Regulus’s silver cross. He never told me why he used to wear it all the time; he’s not religious. But I had become quite fond of seeing it nestled on his broad chest. I slipped it round my neck. At some point I’d give it back to him, could maybe use it as an excuse to see him again. I really had to stop thinking that way though.
I soon realised that I was completely and utterly lost. Regulus, this is all your fault. I pulled my coat even tighter around me as I started to wander into the creepier alleyways of Hogsmeade. I didn’t want to be going even further down these ways, but when I took a turning that seemed to lead back up to the main street…it didn’t. It was like the crowded, lopsided houses were playing tricks on me, taunting me. At that thought, I started to get really freaked out. Mysterious figures were hunched over in doorways; ragged cloaks pulled over their heads. I tried to walk past them briskly, to seem confidant, but an old woman who had previously been slumped in a doorway was suddenly standing in front of me, cackling,
“What you be doin’ down ‘ere pretty? Lookin’ fer a bite ter eat?” I coughed nervously,
“Erm…no thanks, I’m not hungry. If you’d excuse me…” I tried to push past the wart-covered woman, but she held my arm in an iron grip,
“Oh, but I insist! There ain’t brew anywhere in the world like old ma Haggim’s. Come try a touch, we need to fatten you up!” I was distinctly reminded of the witch from the muggle fairytale Hansel and Gretel, and made to draw my wand, prepared to fight my way out of this corner. But it had gone. I must have dropped it when I picked up Regulus’s necklace.
“Oh yer won’t be needin’ a wand where you be goin’ dearie!”
“Where am I going? I’m going back to Hogwarts. Let go of me, you miserable hag,” I demanded into her face. Her breath stank.
“Oh no! We’re going to have so much fun. I do like the spirited ones an’ all,” her voice was gleeful, as if she was excited to start playing some sort of board game. Wild panic was starting to build as I backed up, with nowhere to run. As I filled my lungs for a piercing scream, a greasy hand clamped over my face with terrifying strength, and I was bundled into the house, kicking and struggling.
I would have liked to have been able to look back over the experience and say that I had fought wildly with unimaginable courage, finally freeing myself of the abductor and falling back into the arms of Prince Charming. In real life, things like that don’t happen. I knew that much about the world at least, no matter how much I drifted into a dreamland. I could always separate the lies from reality. That doesn’t mean I didn’t wish for it, though.
I woke with my face pressed into something solid, wet and cold. My immediate thought was one of terror. Was I dead? Had the hag stolen all my belongings then murdered me with a flaming pitchfork? A light breeze was lifting the edge of my skirt up and I jerked my hands behind my back to secure it down. I blinked down at whatever my face was pressed into. Grit and mud got into my eyes and I winced in pain, wiping it away. It occurred to me that my limbs were hanging down either side of a slanting, triangular object. A dirty one. Where the hell was I? I attempted to lift my head and the sky rocked in a whirl of blazing red and purple from a particularly vivid sunset. I didn’t have time to appreciate the view as I flipped off the apex of a roof and started rolling down the side, hands scrabbling to break my fall to certain death. My body was gripped in a seizure of fear; the ground flashed in front of me before being replaced by the sky as I tumbled with gathering speed towards the edge. Ground, sky, ground, sky, my head span and I screamed with terror. People looked up, gasping, but I only caught a fleeting glimpse of their faces before once again my vision was filled with purple. My body was a writhing mess of limbs until finally, my ankle latched onto a small chimney half way down the side of the slate. I was hanging merely by the strength of one ankle, the rest of my body dangling down the slant of the roof, inches away from slipping right off. I was more terrified than I had ever been in my short life. The earth was such a long way away; my muscles refused to move, screaming in protest. I did not do heights. I saw people moving down below, rushing to try and help. I prayed to every god I had ever heard of to save my life, send an angel to carry me down. No such luck. A loud, agonising crack filled the air and pain flooded through my body, numbing the leg I was hanging from. My body was now being supported by a broken ankle. I looked up to see the most sickening shape that I never wanted my leg to be in again, before my vision blurred and I passed out, letting the pain slowly ebb me into unconsciousness.
My ankle felt kind of fuzzy. Like it was made of noodles. It was horrible, and I just wanted to squirm with pain. But that made it more painful.
“Stay still, dear!” came a firm voice from somewhere in the sky. Icy snow was heaped onto my whole leg, numbing the sickening pain slightly. I groaned and blinked to find Mrs. Harbour carefully pouring a hot liquid down my throat. I spluttered and coughed,
“Mrs…Mrs Harbour. What are you doing here?” I was mortified to hear how shaky my voice was. Alice’s anxious face popped into my line of vision,
“Mum was shopping round here when you fell…off the roof of the Three Broomsticks. Marls? How?”
“Maybe now is not the time to interrogate her, Alice!” suggested Mrs. Harbour before turning to me, “What symptoms do you have, dear?”
“I’m suffering from confusion-it is and embarrassed disease,” I admitted, “How many people saw me up there?” Alice blushed,
“Just about the whole of Hogsmeade. Lily, Mary and I were over in Honeydukes and I heard your scream from there.” Lily and Mary finally reached us, out of breath and panting. Alice was an amazing runner. My ankle was feeling comfortably cold now, almost not broken at all. My head started to clear slightly.
“Lily! Mary…” Lily beamed to see that I was alive and talking. Mary had tears in her eyes for some reason.
“Marlene!” sighed Lily, “You big, fat idiot!”
“Hey! I don’t even know how I got up there… Mary, what’s wrong?” Mary sniffed, “I’m sorry, I just…I thought…You could have died! And I was all angry at you for no reason! People shouldn’t get angry…it only makes bad things happen…” tears were sliding down her cheeks. I smiled at her sadly,
“And I’m sorry for being so caught up in my own sorry life and ignoring you to insult Sirius. Then not trying to make it up to you. I’m so sorry, Mary.” Mary hugged me awkwardly.
“Well this is lovely!” beamed Mrs. Harbour, “Aren’t you girls just adorable!” We grinned at each other and laughed. I didn’t even feel the pain as Mrs. Harbour mended my ankle with a simple spell. I didn’t care that I’d lost my wand, and couldn’t feel the cold reminder emanating from Regulus’s necklace for just a few minutes, because I had the best friends ever. I know it's cheesy. So what?
Chapter 7: Harry the Owl
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Hi everyone! Kay, so this update is looong overdue. Sorry!
But here it is now. It’s right here, underneath this random author’s note! So read and review it please!!!
I was lying in such a comfortable bed, I thought that I must be dreaming. No bed that I had ever slept in had been this comfy.
It was so cosy it should’ve been illegal!
So…where exactly was I? I opened my eyes. Good plan.
The familiar vaulted ceiling of the Hospital Wing came into focus. Wow! Madame Pomfrey had finally bought a load of new beds! This was so exciting, I must find Lily and tell her.
Then the events of yesterday came crashing down on me in one big, garbled jumble. DanielHogsmeadeFallingHagAnkleOwwww. I tentatively moved my ankle, and discovered that it was perfectly fine thank you very much.
“How are you feeling, dear?” someone asked, making me yelp in surprise.
“Oh, hi Madame Jayde. I’m fine.”
“All your little friends have been round to see you, love! Very concerned, they were. Took quite a tumble!”
“Yeah about tha-“
“And a strange boy left you this!” Madame Jayde handed me a bunch of white daisies.
“Who was the strange boy?”
“Oh, I don’t know dear! Tall, dark haired. That’s all I can remember. He came quite late at night.”
Regulus? My insides squirmed with part hopefulness, part annoyance. Maybe it had been someone else… Madame Jayde turned to walk away, but I suddenly realised something,
“Wait! Why am I here? Didn’t my friend’s mum mend my ankle? How did it all happen?” She smiled serenely,
“Professor Dumbledore is waiting to speak with you now.”
Oh, shit. Dumbledore actually terrified me. And I was still in my nightdress! I frantically looked around for a jumper to pull on, wishing that Lily was here.
“Miss McKinnon,” Dumbledore’s calm, clear voice resonated through the room. “Were you looking for this jumper, perhaps?”
“AH, there it is…thank you Professor.” He sat down on the rickety side chair as if it were the most ornate throne.
“Would you mind telling me exactly what happened yesterday, Miss McKinnon?” I gulped.
“Well, I was wandering through Hogsmeade on my own…and this strange witch grabbed me by the arm. She kidnapped me I suppose. I mean, I thought I was being kidnapped. She wanted me to eat her stew, but I wasn’t hungry. So she grabbed me. And then….I have no idea how I got on the roof of the Three Broomsticks,” I confessed. Dumbledore put the tips of his fingers together solemnly.
“The ‘strange witch’ as you so descriptively called her…What did she call herself?”
“Um, Ma Higgims? Higgins?” I shrugged.
“Yes. She’s recently escaped from her permanent St. Mungo’s ward. I’m terribly sorry that you happened to be her first victim.”
“But…what exactly did she do?”
“She is a trickster, with a powerful dose of land magic included. Her unstable mental state unfortunately makes her dangerous…I would imagine she jinxed you on top of the roof for a bit of a laugh.”
“Oh. Well, thanks for explaining things to me, Professor. I think I’m fine now, so I’ll just be...” I stood up with only a slight wince, wrapped the jumper more firmly around myself, and practically ran out of there. Dumbledore didn’t stop me, which was good, because I was in such a mood that I might just have jinxed his beard blue.
Even though ultimately that would turn out worse for me. Considering Dumbledore’s a magical genius and all.
Maybe he’d just laugh?
I was tempted to run back and try it.
God, why did this happen to me? Attacked by a psycho woman? Check. A complete failure in the romantic department? Check. Lost my wand? Yep. Falling behind awfully in schoolwork? Check. Currently wandering around the corridors of Hogwarts in the middle of the day wearing only a nightdress? Cheeeccckkk.
Wow, I’m not usually sarcastic, either! Things must be mega-shitting on me.
I found myself in the Owlery. Wish I had an owl. There was a strong breeze blowing through the open window, and it blew my flimsy skirt around.
I wasn’t wearing underwear… Stop looking at me, you pervy owls!
I saw that someone had left out several sheets of parchment and a quill. So I sat down on the window ledge and decided to write to Sofia. Strangely, I missed her. And I worried about her.
It’s Marlene! I miss you loads.
Oh, before I carry on, don’t worry about the owl. Our school has a weird letter-sending system. You can call the owl Harry if you want, because I don’t know what its real name is.
So, how are you? How’s Mr Mushroom? All good? Tell me if ANYTHING’S worrying you, and I’ll help. Pinky promise, remember?
I have a lovely friend here called Lily, and she always makes me smile and feel better. Then my other friends are Alice, Mary (although we only recently became friends again), James, Remus, Sirius and Peter.
I got stuck on someone’s roof yesterday and hurt my ankle. But I’m fine, don’t worry! It was quite funny I suppose. Sort of. Not really.
But it’s all ok now!
Oh, and it’s your birthday soon, isn’t it? I’ll ask my headmaster if I can take you out for the day. We can have a fun, girly day out, yeah?
What have you been up to?
Lots of love, Marlie x
P.S If you want to reply, attach a letter to the bird’s leg! Don’t let anyone see you though…
I sniffed as I folded up the letter, attached it to a bird who was now called Harry apparently. Harry the owl.
I started humming a song about Harry the owl. Then I started singing it properly, and made up some funky dance moves to it. So here I was, singing a song in my nightdress in the Owlery.
People may think I’m craaazy. They can go to hell! That’s a good idea.
“Marlene, are you crazy?”
“Go to hell!” I sang, turning round briefly to see Remus eyeing me warily.
“Um, no? Lily is going to kill you! You’ve been missing for hours.”
“Lily won’t kill me, because then she’ll have no best friends!” I tugged my nightdress down past my knees.
“Why are you singing about owls in your nightdress?”
“Felt like it,” I stuck my tongue out at him.
“Okay.” He shrugged.
“Let’s go have breakfast! I’m starving!” I linked my arm through his and dragged him downstairs.
“Good plan, except for the fact that it’s nearly lunchtime now!”
“Wanna get changed out of your pyjamas?” he asked, as we approached the Gryffindor common room.
“Nope, not really.”
“Well, tough.” He grabbed me round the middle and hoisted me over his shoulder, carrying me kicking and screaming into the common room.
“I HAVEN’T GOT UNDERWEAR ON!” I shrieked, yanking my nightdress down as I got a nice view of Remus’s arse.
Not that I’m looking.
Remus hastily put me down as he realised that I wasn’t bluffing about the underwear thing.
“Marls!” James roared, flinging an arm round my shoulder. “How’s my favourite girl?”
I noticed that Remus was glaring daggers.
“Hey, James. I’m good.”
“Heard you got yourself into a bit of a situation?” he waggled his eyebrows, just as Lily approached. She smiled at James, blushing slightly, then launched herself at me in a bear hug.
Lily blushing around James? I mean, I knew she liked him, but she never showed it.
That was Lily Rule Number One.
“Marlene you stupid, strange girl! Where’ve you been all this time?”
“I’m fine Lily!” I spluttered.
“I found her singing about owls in her nightie,” Remus admitted. I wrinkled my nose,
“You don’t give me enough credit. I was singing beautifully.”
“Well I’m going to get changed. Toodles!” I wandered up to the dorm, Lily following me. As I approached my bed I saw the bunch of daisies resting on my pillow. There was a note in Dumbledore’s handwriting.
Thought you might want these back.
“Who are those from?” Lily asked, slightly anxiously.
“Dunno. Apparently Madame Jayde saw someone come in and put them by my table in the Hospital Wing…”
Lily raised an eyebrow but said nothing else. She sat down on her bed and began quietly meditating. I changed into some comfy jeans and a casual shirt, before poking her.
“So, what’s with you and James, huh?”
“Don’t disturb me when I’m in my mind palace!” she complained. I ignored her.
“I saw you blushing around him. Are you two dating now? Finally?”
“Tell me!” Lily grinned happily,
“We met up by accident in Hogsmeade, both on our own. So we spent the day together. And just before you fell off The Three Broomsticks he…kissed me.”
“On the lips?”
“THE CHEEK!” I screeched, “That’s the absolute confirming sign of love! Lips means he’s just physically attracted to you, but if he kissed you on the cheek he actually cares about you! And respects you as a person, not just a body.” Lily looked hopeful,
“Well, he also asked me to the party tonight! So I should probably start getting ready. It starts in about three hours.”
“What party?” I frowned. I adore parties, and always get upset if I’m not invited to one.
That’s me. Selfish party crasher. Life and soul of Hogwarts.
“It’s Peter’s birthday today, remember?”
“Oh shit, is it? I didn’t get him a present! I haven’t got anything to wear!” I opened my wardrobe door frantically and pulled out a belt. “Can I give him a belt? Socks? Chocolate?”
“Calm down!” Lily snatched away the belt that I was wildly waving around. “We’ll find something for you to give him.”
“Can I borrow that cute red dress of yours?”
“No, cos I’m wearing it.”
“Bah. But James will love it! You have to kiss him properly by the end of the night, ok?”
“Believe me, I’ll try.”
And that right there is why I love Lily Jane Evans so much.
Hey! It’s me again. What an awful chapter, right? Sorry! It’s just a filler (which wasn’t originally meant to be a filler), but there’ll be LOADS of good stuff in chapter 8. I’m not feeling that well at the moment, so I didn’t mean to end it there. But hopefully it’s cleared up the hag business from last chapter. If anyone’s still confused, say so in a review and I’ll edit!