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Chapter 14 : Of Mudbloods And Blood Traitors
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“Oh…hello,” he said awkwardly. He hadn’t spoken to the girl since their incident in the bathroom, and it was positively odd that she would approach him.
“Hello, Haiden. How are your studies going? I know I’m worried about my Potions essay.”
“Anyway, Ronald and I were arguing in the hall the other day about his inability to finish his own homework without help, and we took a wrong turn and happened upon the most interesting creature.”
“Creature?” Haiden asked, his interest piqued.
“Well, yes. We were wondering if you could shed some light on the subject, seeing that you’ve lived in the castle most of your life.”
“Where is it?”
“In the third floor corridor, you know, the one that’s off limits to students?” Haiden raised his eyebrows dramatically.
“What does this creature look like?”
Hermione’s demeanor was deathly serious as she softly replied, “A giant three headed dog.”
“A three headed dog? I’ve no idea…but I know someone who might,” Haiden said pensively. Before he could divulge anymore, their meeting was interrupted.
“Snape and a mudblood? Have you completely lost your mind?” Draco cut in, his newest best friends Crabbe and Goyle by his side.
“Well, Malfoy, if you consider talking to Hermione a sign of losing your mind, then yeah, I guess I have. I’ve decided to upgrade my conversations from dull, stupid drabble to smart academia.”
Draco’s countenance was murderous. “You just wait until I tell father! And your father for that matter! I’ll be he doesn’t know about your little affair with the mudblood.”
“So tell him! See if I care!” Haiden yelled. Within seconds, Madame Pince was sternly approaching the table. “Let’s go, Hermione.” Standing up, he gathered his things and marched out of the library, Hermione close on his heels.
“You didn’t have to stick up for me,” Hermione said, catching up to Haiden.
“Yeah, well, he shouldn’t say things like that. He doesn’t even know you,” he said, staring at his feet as he walked. In truth, Haiden really didn’t know Hermione that well at all either.
“Are the two of you close?”
“We used to be. I don’t know, he’s mad and says I’m moody all the time. Maybe I am. I don’t really want to talk about it. Now, the third floor corridor, you say?”
Hermione wrinkled her nose.
“We’re not going there, are we?” she asked.
“No, but I know just where to go to find out about this creature. Do you know Hagrid?” he asked, his pace speeding up as they reached the entrance hall.
“Hagrd…the game keeper? I know of him, but I can’t say I’ve ever spoken to him,” Hermione replied.
“Well, Hagrid loves weird animals. When I was little he brought this giant…well, thing, with pokey spines and a bad temper, and it accidentally got loose in the castle during the summer. I don’t think I’ve ever seen Dad so angry,” Haiden said, the sudden, unplanned mention of his father wiping the reminiscent smile off his face.
“What was it like to grow up in the castle?” Hermione asked, the cool air blasting them both in the face as they stepped outside.
“It was great. There were always good meals, and I got to know the staff well, but the best was the quidditch pitch. Me an’ Draco used to play for hours in the afternoon, until we started fighting. Professor McGonagall said she wished I’d be a Gryffindor, because with my skills she’d put me on the team in a heartbeat, but…father…didn’t want to seem like he favored his…son…over other children. So I don’t get to play, even though I’m way better than anyone on the Slytherin team.”
“Well aren’t you cocky,” Hermione said, the tone of her voice surprisingly cold.
“I don’t mean that I could do it alone, but…never mind. We’re almost there,” Haiden said quickly, wanting desperately to change the subject.
Hagrid’s small hut was off in the distance, smoke rolling from the chimney. Haiden didn’t visit the large man often, but he knew that Hagrid would know something about the creature in the castle.
When they arrived, he knocked three times on the door, and it was quickly answered.
“Eh…’ello there, Haiden, what can I do fer yeh today?” he asked rather awkwardly.
“Hi, Hagrid. This is my friend, Hermione, and we were wondering if we could talk to you.”
“I…er, I suppose so, come in then.”
The two stepped inside his house, only to find a somewhat untidy, yet quaint little place.
“ ‘Ello, Hermione, it is lovely to meet yer.” He stuck out a large paw and grasped her small hand.
“My dad he…er…he showed me that big creature, you know, the big black three headed dog, that’s on the third floor?” Haiden asked.
“Showed yeh Fluffy did ‘e? I was under the impression that only me ‘n Dumbledore knew ‘bout Fluffy. An’ I’m surprised your dad told you! Tha’s a dangerous place to be without supervision.”
“But I had supervision. My dad was there. Anyway, I was just curious as to why there was a three headed dog in the castle in the first place?”
“Oh, I can’t tell yeh that, it’s between me, Dumbledore, and Nicholas Flamel, and it wouldn’t be good if the secret about what it’s guarding got out.” Just as soon as the words left his mouth, Hagrid’s eyes grew wide and he suddenly looked ridiculously uncomfortable in his own house.
“Thank you, Hagrid. We’d better get back to the castle, it’s getting late. But maybe we’ll stop by again sometime,” Haiden finished, turning to Hermione.
As they quickly left the small hut, he heard Hagrid call after them, “Now don’t be goin’ off an tellin’ people abou’ that!”
As soon as they were safely inside the castle walls, they burst into laughter.
“He’s an interesting man,” Hermione said, catching her breath.
“But what about what he told us! Nicholas Flamel…who is that? And what on earth could Dumbledore have been thinking, putting a three headed dog in the castle!”
“Well, he did say that students should stay away from it. But it’s so easy to get turned around in this castle! Anyway…do you think we should tell Ron?”
“Er…well, you can tell Ron, I’m going to dinner now,” Haiden said slowly, trying to avoid the possibility of having to face Ron. The two boys had largely ignored each other since the incident, and Haiden wasn’t about to test the waters. He wasn’t in the mood to start a fight.
“Okay, fine. I’ll try to find out as much as possible. I spend so much time in the library anyway, it shouldn’t be too time consuming,” Hermione replied brightly, sticking out her small hand.
“Alright. Well, I guess I’ll see you later then.” Haiden shook her hand and walked away, heading straight for the Great Hall. It hadn’t occurred to him that talking to her would get him in trouble with his friends. He knew Draco and knew his opinions well, but it was foreign to him that Draco would stop being his friend just because he talked to a muggle born witch.
However, the minute he took his seat in his usual place at the Slytherin table, he knew immediately what the consequences of speaking to a mudblood meant. The entire table glared at him, and Haiden knew that Draco had been back to tell the whole common room. So, he ate his dinner in silence and left immediately afterward, escaping to his dormitory which would be a safe haven as long as his friends were gone.
It was best that way; his relationship with Draco had deteriorated so much, and Haiden knew he would never go so far as to try and initiate a conversation with him. It wasn’t that he couldn’t fix it; all he had to do was go up to Draco and say “The little mudblood girl is nothing more than a mudblood, I was wrong, and I’m ready to join you in your torture and taunting of mudbloods and half bloods everywhere.”
But there was something inside him that knew that it wasn’t fair to persecute mudbloods. Hermione Granger may have been one of the most annoying know-it-alls he’d ever met, but she was also very smart, and didn’t judge him based on his blood. The fact that he secretly was a half blood also weighed heavily on his mind. He felt like an outsider in his own house. A half blood in Slytherin’s house. What would Salazar Slytherin himself say?
Suddenly, Haiden didn’t want to be in the dungeon anymore. He wanted to deviate his thoughts away from his lost friends, and instead focus on the new mystery at hand. So, he climbed the stairs up to the third floor corridor and crept inside, making sure that he had no followers.
The hallway was dark and dank, lit only with a few small candles, and it appeared that no one had set foot there in a while. His steps echoed down the expanse of the corridor, and it made Haiden shiver uncomfortably as he made his way down, checking each door and listening for whatever sounds a three headed dog might make.
What made him stop however, was the sound of a door opening and closing very softly. Up ahead, Haiden saw the dark silhouette limping toward him. His breath caught in his throat as he stopped and pressed himself against a wall, as though that would make him instantly invisible.
The limping man stopped and looked directly at Haiden, and familiar gazes locked on each other as Haiden’s breath caught in his throat.
“Haiden!” the voice hissed, “what do you think you are doing up here!”
“I could ask the same about you,” Haiden replied to his father. “Why are you limping?” He looked down to his father’s leg and saw blood caked around some fresh wounds.
“That is none of your concern! Why are you up here in the forbidden corridor? You need to return to your common room immediately!” Severus said quietly.
“Why? I don’t want to go back down there, and I don’t really want to talk to you right now either. Just leave me alone.”
“ I don’t want to leave you alone, I want you to talk to me. What would possess you to come up here?”
“I got lost, alright?” Haiden grumped, using Hemione’s excuse from earlier.
“You know this castle like the back of your hand,” Severus scoffed, moving towards the boy. “Come with me. I want to talk to you—“
“Well Idon’t want to talk to you!”
Haiden took off running, knowing his father couldn’t catch him, and he ran back down to his room, pulling the green and silver curtains on his bed the minute he arrived. Uninvitingly, worry pulled at his heart, and he wondered why his father was wounded. At the same time, he wondered if his father had gone to face the three-headed dog. What did he know that Haiden didn’t? What would he want with whatever the dog was guarding?
Dear Father, December 19
Christmas is approaching, only a few days away, and I haven’t decided what I’m going to do. The thing is, there are some things I want to talk to you about, and I find that every day it gets a little harder to completely ignore you exist. I think part of me might be ready to forgive, but not all of me. I still hate that you lied, and I hate that I can’t be who I really am. But I think mostly, the reason that it hurts so bad, the reason that I can’t face you is because I really do want to be your son. I wish so much that I really was. But I’m not. So why should I keep pretending, why should I pretend that things should go back the way they were, when they never can? Why should I bother trying to talk to you when you’re not my dad and you don’t have any authority?
But there are so many things I’m confused about, I wish I could talk to someone about it. Draco called me a blood traitor in front of the whole school yesterday because I walked up to Hermione Granger to wish her a Happy Christmas before she goes home. I don’t understand why I deserve that just for being nice. I don’t understand why things are the way they are.
I want to help Hermione with this mystery, and I think you might know but I can’t ask you, because every time I try I just see your face telling me I’m not your son. Why aren’t things fair? Why can’t you really be my dad?
A/N: This chapter is short, and I apologize. It’s also not my best, so just know that I acknowledge that and I plan to up the game in the next chapter. I was going to write more about it but I have to go to class soon and I really wanted to update today. I’m so excited about the next chapter though, I think you’re going to like it :) Oh, and if you get a chance, check out the Loyalty story! I wrote a chapter for it, “Molly and Arthur Weasley” and I think Logical Raven and Timeturner both really deserve it.
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