Chapter 4 : Oh No, Not Again.
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I sat on the couch in the common room, watching a moth fighting against the window pane. It would fly with full speed towards the glass, bounce off, and then fly at it again, its tiny wings beating with desperation. It wasn’t really that interesting, and yet I couldn’t take my eyes away. There was something so desperate and pathetic about the moth stuck in its glass prison; it made my heart ache.
“Rosie, are you alright?” Albus’s voice seemed rather far away as he placed his hand on my shoulder. I startled lightly at his touch, so captivated I had been that I had forgotten where I was.
“Yeah, I’m fine.” I said quietly, finally tearing my gaze away from the window. Albus and Olivia were looking at me strangely. Olivia, who had decided that she was speaking to me again, cleared her throat and said,
“You’ve been really quiet for like, three days. It’s not like you. What’s up?” the concern on her face was mirrored on Albus’s. I attempted an airy laugh and waved them away.
“It’s really no big deal. Don’t worry about it.” I said.
The truth was I couldn’t stop thinking about what Scorpius had said. “You are so conceited that you can’t even see.” Those words kept playing over and over in my head, driving me mad. I was not conceited! I did not think that I was better than everyone else, why would anyone think that? And yet, he had said that I couldn’t even see it. Was that true? Did I really treat people that way? It couldn’t be, it just couldn’t. Why was I listening to Scorpius Malfoy anyway? He was a complete git.
Albus nudged my shoulder. “Well,” he said slyly, “I know what we can do. There’s a party tonight in the room of requirement. We should go.” He said it matter-of-factly, as if it was our duty to mingle with the “little people.” My mind immediately shot to what Scorpius had said, but I brushed it off.
“I don’t know Al; I don’t think I’m really up for a party tonight, and in the room of requirement of all places. We’re going to get caught.” I made up excuses.
“No we won’t.” Olivia interjected. “We never do, they’ve been doing this for years. The room won’t let us get caught. Besides,” she shrugged, “how else are all the houses going to be able to come?”
I knew this was true, but I really didn’t want to go. Albus, however, wouldn’t give up so easily. “Come on Rose. You need to get out.” I just turned away from him, but I suppose he wouldn’t take no for an answer, because he jumped on top of me until I promised that I would go.
“Okay! Okay! Uncle! Uncle! I’ll go!” I gasped, laughing as Albus got off me. Olivia was staring at us with a strange look in her eyes, the same wide-eyed look she had been giving me in the great hall the other day. It was as if she was trying to tell me something with those big brown eyes, but I didn’t know what.
Finally satisfied that I was under his control, Albus turned to Olivia.
“So,” he said eagerly. Her face visibly brightened at being addressed. “Have you asked your Dad about coming to watch me play?” he asked.
Olivia’s father Edward Winton was the owner of the Whirling Dervishes, an esteemed Quidditch team in Wales that Albus was dying to be a part of. Mr. Winton had also invented some major enhancement spells for brooms, and as such, Olivia and her family were very wealthy. Being a part of upper-class wizarding society meant that Olivia had to play the part of the debutant. She was constantly scolded by her mother for not being proper enough. School was the only place where she really had any control, and she flaunted her popular authority status with gusto.
She turned to Albus with a forced smile on her face. “I wrote to him a few days ago, but he still hasn’t responded.” She said sweetly, picking up her mug of coffee off the table. Her wrists were so thin. She had struggled with an eating disorder a few years ago, but she had been cured for almost a year now. I wonder if she’s started to…
Albus stood up suddenly, bumping into me and interrupting my thoughts.
“What was that about?” I demanded of him, but he was already striding over to the portrait hole where Geneva had entered. I rolled my eyes and looked at Olivia, expecting her to role hers back, but she didn’t. Instead that strange look passed over her face and then she got up and walked up to our dorm.
I sighed, turning away again. What has gotten into everyone? I thought. What’s gotten into me?
When I looked at the window, the moth was still flying against the glass again, and again, and again.
It was dark outside before we left for the party. I sighed as I pulled a fresh shirt over my head. Why was I even going to this party? What was the point? It wasn’t going to make me feel any better. It made have a week ago, but my outlook on life had definitely changed since then.
“Earth to Rose.” Olivia rapped on the corner of my four poster bed. “You ready to go? Albus just looked at the map, and it looks like Mannford is asleep, so now would be the best time.” Mannford was the psycho caretaker who probably ate children for breakfast.
“Yeah, I suppose.” I answered, swinging my legs over the edge of the bed. “Let’s go.”
My friends were all waiting for me downstairs. Usually, this wouldn’t strike me as odd, but today it made me think, Why are they all waiting for me? They could have left already. They don’t need me.
Albus winked at me when I reached the foot of the stairs.
“Alright guys, since I have the map I’m going to be leading us in pairs. Rosie, Olivia, you’re first.” He motioned to the invisibility cloak that he had inherited from his father. “Let’s go.”
We snuck out of the portrait hole and into the hallway. Albus and I had to crouch down because of our height. We didn’t want our ankles to give us away.
When we reached the tapestry of the trolls, Al told us to concentrate on the party. The magical door appeared, and after checking the map to make sure the coast was clear, he deposited us at the entrance.
“See you in a few.” He whispered hoarsely. I scoffed inwardly. He got way to into these undercover things.
“You ready?” Olivia asked. I nodded, putting on my best smile and entering the room.
It was crowded with people from every house, even Slytherin. Loud music that I had not heard moments before suddenly flooded my ears. The room had adapted to look somewhat like a muggle dance club. Some one was carrying a crate of what looked suspiciously like firewhisky. I sighed. It was going to be one of those nights.
Olivia and I walked around, mingling with various people. I probably was complimented on my casual jeans and t-shirt a million times. Olivia was dressed to the nines in brand new designer robes from who-knows-where, and yet people didn’t seem to acknowledge her as much.
Finally, Albus arrived with Geneva by his side. The two were way to close for a just friends type of thing. She was laughing at literally everything he said. Olivia looked as if she might be ill. Albus kept playing with Geneva’s hair. I had never seen him act this way before. The hurt was visible on Olivia’s face.
“I’m just going to get some refreshments and head back to the dorm.” She said finally.
“I’ll come with you!” I said hurriedly. I didn’t want her to be angry with me. She just smiled in her semi-sweet way.
“Oh, that’s alright Rose, I’m just really tired.” The smile on her face didn’t fool me. She was lying, but why? She looked me up and down and then added, “You look fabulous by the way.”
I groaned as she walked away. This wasn’t happening.
Geneva pulled Albus onto the dance floor, and he winked at me once again before allowing himself to be dragged off.
I was finally completely on my own, and I didn’t know what to do with myself. I could feel the bass from the music pulsing in my veins, begging me to dance, but I wouldn’t. I just wasn’t in the mood.
I scanned the room for a familiar face, and was surprised to see Scorpius lurking around the corner of the room, seemingly by himself. He had a bottle of butterbeer in his hand, but he looked like he was enjoying the party just as much as I was (which was not at all). So districted was I by his presence that I didn’t notice Puck Csintalan until he was right in front of me. I startled as he stepped towards me, scaring me out of my mind.
“So Weasley,” he began, giving me the eye “you decided to show up for our little shindig. I’m honored.”
I averted my eyes from his inappropriately intense stare.
“What do you want Puck?” I asked, searching the room. Where was Albus?
Puck laughed quietly and started sliding his finger up and down my arm. I shivered unpleasantly. “Fancy a dance?” he asked as his finger reached my shoulder. I shrugged him off.
“Not really.” I said defiantly. He was way too close; I could smell firewhisky on his breath. No doubt he was the one who brought it.
“Come on.” He said angrily, grabbing my wrists. “Let’s dance.” I tried to pull away, but his grip was to strong.
“Let go!” I demanded. He pulled harder.
“You want to say no to me again Weasley?” He said threateningly. I didn’t know what to do. He was too close. Way way too close.
Suddenly, a hand clapped down on his shoulder and Puck let go of me.
“Everything alright here mate?” came a familiar voice. Puck looked as surprised to Scorpius as I was. He looked at me for a minute before sneering and walking away. Scorpius smirked, turning to me.
“He will do great things.” He said sarcastically. I just gaped at him wordlessly.
Did that just happen? I shut my eyes hard and opened them again, expecting to see someone else. But there was Scorpius, plain as day looking at me in that penetrating. For the second time in five minutes I shivered.
“Why did you do that?” I asked finally. He looked at me as if I were slow.
“He was out of line.” He said slowly. I shook my head.
“No, I mean why did you do that for me? Why are you being nice to me?” I felt my cheeks flush scarlet as a waited for his answer. He thought for a moment before replying:
And with that he disappeared once again into the crowd, leaving me utterly bewildered.
When I returned to my room, it was dark and silent. I sank onto my bed, shaking with a feeling that I couldn’t describe. I sat there for a long time, breathing in and out shakily. It wasn’t until much later when I looked over at Olivia’s bed that I realized she wasn’t there.
That’s odd. I thought. She left the party way before me. I stood up, looking around to make sure she wasn’t there. When I found that she wasn’t, I slowly walked out into the hall and padded down the stairs to the common room.
The lights were off, and the room was seemingly deserted. I looked around and was about to give and go back to my room when I saw a bare foot hanging off the couch. What would she be doing down here?
“Olivia?” I whispered, walking around the couch expecting to see her asleep.
I was surprised to find that the foot did not belong to Olivia, but to Geneva Kingsworth who was on top of Albus kissing him feverishly. His was letting out the sort of small groans that I did not want to be hearing from my cousin. I let out an “Oh!” of surprise, and the two of them shot up, looking around wild-eyed. When Geneva saw me, she turned a deep scarlet. Albus just grinned sheepishly. I rolled my eyes for the umpteenth time that day. This was the last thing I needed.
“I’m err, just going to go back upstairs.” I said, trying not to vomit. Albus didn’t even have to common courtesy to wait until I was out of the room to pull Geneva down and get at it again. I made a mental note to teach him some manners before I headed up the stairs.
I reached the foot of the stairs, glad to be out of that awkward situation. Everything was upside down. My life was not supposed to be going this way. Everything was out of whack; I just wanted to sink back into numbness again.
I had decided that Olivia was simply nowhere to be found, but then as I passed the bathroom, I saw a light under the door. That’s odd; I thought everyone was in bed. I tried to open the door, but it was locked. I knocked on it but no one answered. I could hear the sound of running water coming from inside, and instantly, I knew.
Oh no, not again.
I pulled out my wand and pointed it at the knob. “Alohamora.” The door swung open with a click. I knew what I would see before it even opened all the way.
Olivia was on her hands and knees, head over the toilet. When she heard the door open, she looked up at me with pleading eyes, tears running down her face. Her wand lay discarded next to her pathetic form, covered in bile. I didn’t know what to say. This couldn’t be happening, not again. Surely I would have noticed. But then Scorpius’s words hit me again. “You are so conceited that you can’t even see.” Could I really have been so blind?
I crouched down next to her. She was sobbing. “I’m s-s-sorry Rose.” She sputtered. “I tried, I really d-d-d-did, but I just needed some c-c-control!” she choked, burying her face in my shoulder. I just cradled her frail body in my arms and stroked her hair.
As I rocked my friend back and forth, I couldn’t help but think of the moth that I had seen earlier that day, flying against the glass. In some way the three of us, Olivia, the moth and I, were strangely alike. All stuck in an endless cycle, trying unsuccessfully to escape the hard reality that surrounds us.
Yay! So there it is. It might be slightly confusing the way I wrote it, so if you have any questions at ALL please ask me, and I will be sure to answer them or try to go back and fix it.
On another note:
I am SO flattered by the amount of people who have favorited my story! Seriously, I love you guys.
To all of you who have been reveiwing, you are my favorites. LOL. Keep it up.
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