Chapter 2 : Curious
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“You stole my cherry shine red nail polish, you wanker!”
Rose, sitting calmly on the base of her bed, watched in half-amusement as Audie defensively held up her hands (funnily enough, her fingernails were a suspicious shade of red) her pale eyes pleading as Gwendolen advanced murderously.
Their daily morning argument was interrupted with the loud, frantic chirping of Bollocks, Rose’s canary, as he swerved dangerously around their heads. Gwen blinked, staring up as a blur of yellow zoomed by and Audie flapped her arms in the air rather comically. Rose stifled a laugh.
“Would you get that ruddy bird under control?” growled Gwen, her hands residing to her hips as she turned to glare at Rose.
Rose shrugged daintily, “not my fault, you called him.”
“Huh?” asked Audie, her mouth forming a small pout in confusion.
Gwen sighed and with the roll of her dark tawny eyes, tossed her electric blue nail-polish bottle at her clueless friend, “its name is Bollocks, twat-face.”
Audie’s gave a small, “oh”, shrugged, and turned back to her trunk with a toss of her champagne-blonde bob. “Now, do you think I should wear this green t-shirt, or this floral blouse?”
“What the hell is going on?” came a groggy voice, followed by the appearance of Louisa’s tousled yellow locks and disgruntled features.
“A dilemma,” stated Rose matter-of-factly to her best friend’s inquiring look, “should Audie wear green or floral today?”
Louisa frowned, her heavy-lidded eyes squinting in the direction of Audie who was still looking expectantly at Gwen. Gwen, on the other hand, was rifling through her nail polish box, muttering furiously under her breath.
“Definitely the floral,” mumbled Louisa, only to disappear back behind her bed curtains.
Rose stood up, smoothing down the coral pinafore she was wearing that gave her hair a more coopery appearance, she picked up her satchel and placed Bollocks back in his large, castle-shaped cage, “until later,” she whispered. Bidding a farewell to Audie and Gwen, and a shove in the shoulder to her sleepy friend, Rose skipped down to breakfast.
“You’re looking cheery today. Where’s Louisa?”
Rose gave her brother a knowing look as she slid into her usual seat at the Gryffindor table, helping herself to some fresh, exotic fruit. She knew Hugo had an undeniable crush on his cousin’s girlfriend; it’d been going for a least two years. Two years too long, in Rose’s opinion.
Hugo frowned, running a shifty hand through his flaming tresses, choosing to ignore his sister’s look, he had seemed to come to the conclusion that he’d act oblivious to the fact Rose knew his secret.
Kade and Buck sat themselves down opposite her, grumbling a feeble good morning to Rose as they did so. Rose smiled brightly back, openly watching Buck with undisguised curiosity as he attacked his breakfast. She glanced down at the notes she’d made the previous week on the train.
Scouting around for a certain mane of vivid, crimson coils, Rose scrunched her nose in concentration, tilting her neck high into the air and her eyes skimming the Hufflepuff table.
Loud laughter, a clutter of dishes, a long disordered curly braid, horn-rimmed glasses. Bingo. Molly was eating breakfast in her usual delightful way, chortling manically with her group of friends, who’d seemingly decided to over look Molly’s charming eating habits after five years.
Honestly, Rose thought to herself in secret amusement, you’d think the girl was brought up either by a bunch of baboons, or Uncle Charlie.
Without bothering to finish her mango, Rose stood up, patting her brother distractedly on the shoulder who in turn mumbled, “Gwrose?”, watching as his sister floated dreamily across the hall, and seating herself down beside their cousin.
“Morning, Molly,” Rose said, calmly pouring herself a drink of pumpkin juice in her cousin’s goblet.
“Hey Rosie,” Molly greeted warmly, ignoring the look that was passed between her friends and choosing to silently accept the fact that her goblet had been re-claimed.
“How are you finding school?” asked Rose, looking at her cousin expectantly, a bright smile on her face.
Molly squinted a little in suspicion, but answered nonetheless, “tis alright, I guess. 6th year is a little tougher then I originally thought.”
“You’ll manage,” came Rose’s serene, assured reply. “If you like, I can always help you with your subjects.”
Molly grinned, readjusting her horn-rimmed glasses in excitement, “would you, Rosie? That’d be so brill.” Now Molly’s little friends were looking rather envious.
Rose beamed, drowning down the rest of the pumpkin juice, “it’s no bother,” she stood up, pleased, “it was lovely to talk, Molly, see you around. "
Molly had shoved her freckled face with scrambled eggs, “yah seghaar!”
Rose’s smile didn’t waver, even at such an unsightly display, and she turned back to her own table, satisfaction and excitement tingling in her bones. She was just one step on the way towards success. She picked up her satchel where she’d left it beside her brother, bid him another goodbye, gave Buck a pat on the head (he looked around in bewilderment) and passed a heavily snogging Albus and Louisa as she headed towards her first class, Divination.
The day passed by in a blur of lost thoughts and chaotic, mind-less doodling. Rose was a big fan of doodling; it’s what got her through classes most days. She didn’t pretend to be wonderfully artistic when it came to drawing but it could be said she could scribble with a certain measure of talent. She fancied herself the more dance and music sort. While she pondered this, the people surrounding her began to stand up, piling all their books together. Rose blinked, shaking her chestnut bangs out of her eyes, and Louisa nudge her in the ribs.
“Day dreaming, again, Rosie?” she asked playfully. Rose didn’t bother replying, as she headed out the door into the corridor, she checked her pocket watch. Her lips curled down in frown as she realised the time, a crease deepening between her eyebrows. She didn’t realise how fast the day had gone. She hmphed quietly under her breath. Surely by now…?
Rose paused, a triumph grin spread over her lips. Biting it back quickly, she swirled around, feigning a look of curious innocence. She spotted the familiar mop of crimson curls, “Molly?” she questioned angelically.
Molly, who was dashing through the crowds of students, came to a halt in front of her older cousin; she bent over, her hands on her knees, out of breath. “I-I was wondering if you could help me with my Herbology assignment?” she panted, nervously adjusting her glasses that’d slipped down her long nose.
Rose pretended to ponder this for a minute, “okay,” she eventually stated serenely, “my common room, or yours?” she crossed her fingers behind her back.
Molly straightened up, shrugging casually, “don’t mind. Up to you, really.”
Rose beamed delicately, pleased at the way things were playing out so easily, “mine, then? The password is Phoenix. Promise not to tell?”
Molly nodded promptly, Rose could trust her, she was her cousin after all, “cross my heart, hope to die.”
Rose breathed a laugh, “I certainly hope not,” she checked her clock again, “I’ll see you later tonight then, Molly, say 6’oclock?”
Molly nodded, grinning appreciatively as she ran off.
Rose hummed pleasantly to herself, she spotted Louisa and Albus at the other end of the corridor, and made her way over to them. “Let the magic begin.”
“So, last year you would have learnt the effects of Gillyweed…yes?"
Molly stared at Rose blankly.
Rose sighed softly, refraining from rolling her eyes, “Gillyweed, here look at this,” she said as she pulled the quill from behind her ear and began drawing a small diagram of the gillyweed.
Molly adjusted her glasses, “wow you’re a good drawer Rosie.”
Rose just shrugged, her eyes flickering the room as her quill continued to scratch along the parchment distractedly. When would he come? She sighed, in the mean time, she'd have to search for ideas to explain to her clueless cousin. Looking thoughtful, an idea came to her and her bones began tingling again with excitement. Thrusting the diagram under Molly's nose she said, “Think of Uncle Harry. Remember he used gillyweed for the second part of the tri-wizard tournament?”
Molly shifted her horn-rimmed glasses, her eyes widening, “uh… Uncle Harry was in the Tri-wizard Tournament?”
Rose nodded, looking back down to her notes. When she volunteered her help to her younger cousin, she didn’t assume she’d need this much help.
“Wow, Uncle Harry is cool.”
Rose cringed. Cool. That word was so James Potter, who used it to string every second word together.
“Yes, right. Now, back to Herbology. You know this stuff, Molly, I know you do. The second task was to dive into the Black Lake, now Uncle Harry couldn’t very well go swimming in there without any thing, so he made – alright, so he didn’t make it, but any way – he took Gillyweed, which caused a growth of gills and webbed feet that allowed him to swim safely beneath the surface, and not to mention breathe under water.”
“You talking about Harry Potter?”
Rose and Molly were sitting at the table in the Gryffindor common room, while most other students gathered by the fire or headed up to their beds for the night. Both girl's looked up when they heard this comment, laced with unhidden eagerness. Buck Colbert towered over them, his dark ochre brown hair dishevelled and an intriguing glint in his hazel eyes.
Rose paused, a secret grin pulling up at the corner of her lips, was this is it? Was this the moment? She knew some thing would have drawn him over eventually. Buck always disturbed her at night if she looked like she was actually busy doing some thing. She motioned her hand to the seat opposite them, “yeah… we are.”
Buck slid into the seat, lounging back casually. Molly adjusted her glasses again, staring at Buck, and then turning to stare back at Rose.
Rose cleared her throat, and this was the moment. This was it. “Molly this is Buck, Buck this is my cousin Molly.”
Buck ruffled his hair, eying Molly, “Ah so that’s why you’re talking about Harry Potter. That’s so awesome that you guys actually know him.”
“We’re related to him,” quipped Molly politely. There was an awkward pause, Rose recovered quickly.
“Do you know what we’re talking about?” she asked Buck quietly.
“Man, hell yeah. The Gillyweed. Absolute brilliance. You didn’t know about that?” he said, glancing back at Molly with his eyebrows risen comically half way up his forehead. Molly blushed.
Buck shook his head, his scraggly locks flying every where, “ah mate, I could probably tell you every thing about your uncle, and every other Quidditch player in Britain.”
“Molly loves Quidditch,” Rose said quickly and matter-of-factly.
Molly gave a strange and uncharacteristic giggle. Rose refrained from fainting in surprise. “I would love to be like my Aunt and play for the Harpies,” she confessed.
Buck replied, Rose let the conversation slide over her head. Instead, she squinted, observing their body language. Rose always dismissed whatever any of her “potentials” said; after all, no one ever says what he or she is really thinking. No, that’s always shown through the way they subconsciously act, the moves and gestures they project.
In this case, Molly was leaning sightly forward in her chair, and for once she wasn’t adjusting her horn-rimmed glasses, no, instead she was… twirling a finger through a messy lock of crimson hair? How curious...
Buck was still lounging casually in his chair, but Rose could tell his was eager and excited. He loved all things famous and Quidditch-related, and obviously Molly Weasley was no exception. Rose sighed pleasantly, feeling very much satisfied for the day. For she could tell that this was the start of some thing quite beautiful.
A/N: and so the matchmaking begins! :) Next chapter Scorpius steps in...
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