Chapter 6 : Miles Away
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Charlie seemed calmer once we got back. She sort of just, patted my hand and smiled, before dashing off to her own dormitory, leaving me to go to mine. I climbed the stairs, and tried not to roll my eyes as a group of first years fell silent at the sight of me. Yeah, I’m a Potter. It’s old news. But apparently not to them. They didn’t appear to have any sort of tact either, so as soon as they thought I could hear them anymore, there was a tirade of ‘was that James Potter?’
Anyway, climbing the stairs to the very top dormitory, I pushed open the door and was immediately greeted with the raised eyebrows of four other Seventh year boys.
They were all regarding me with the same ‘where’ve you been’ look, so I rolled my eyes and flopped down on my bed.
“So Potter, where’ve you been?” Tom Chiswick asked, throwing the paper aeroplane I know he’s been working on enchanting since before I left. I threw it back at him, and it landed neatly beside his arm.
“None of your business mate.” I told him, smiling to show I wasn’t trying to be too harsh.
“That Charlotte bird was gone too. Something happen?” Tom asked, not taking the, very obvious, hint.
“Nothing happened Tom.” David Bleach said, from his position on his bed by the door “Take his word for it.”
Thank you David Bleach.
They, along with George Hornby and Michael Milne, made up my other mates. When I wasn’t with Charlotte – or Demeter for that matter – I was with them. While The Beaters were pretty cool, they could be pretty annoying. Plus, I was starting to think Splinters had a thing for Charlie, which was, y’know, less cool than it really should have been.
I wondered if Charlie had told anyone where she’d gone, and realised that the only people she would have told, would have known anyway. I swear my sister wants to adopt Charlie so she gets a sister too. Even Albus, my antisocial little brother loves her. Rose loves her, Hugo loves her…even my seven-year-old cousin Lucy loves her.
Even so, she’s quiet. The fact that Tom and the others don’t even know her properly didn’t surprise me. She’s my best mate, but there’s a lot about her that I don’t know.
Just then, George and Mike burst in, arms bulging with food, and singing ‘A Pirate’s Life for Me’ at the top of their voices. I don’t bother to be surprised. It is George and Mike after all, and with a roll of my eyes, I step forward to relieve them of some of their food.
She was waiting for me when I got to the common room. Demeter, that is. Not Charlie. I assumed she had already gone down to breakfast with Lily.
“Jamsie,” She cooed, planting a big sloppy kiss on my cheek. I felt a smidge of annoyance, knowing that Charlie would have waited if Demeter hadn’t. I shrugged it off, however, when she linked her fingers in mine and sunk into my arm.
I didn’t see Charlie at Breakfast, but I had a feeling that Demeter might have had something to do with it. I decided not to think about it.
I had Defence first thing, so we left the Great Hall and dawdled up to the fourth floor. We paused at the entrance to the classroom, and from within I heard Charlotte scoff. I fought to roll my eyes.
“See you later Jayjay.” Demeter whispered, kissing me on the cheek and sauntering off, glancing back at me as she did so. I smiled dizzily and waltzed into the classroom, taking my seat at the back next to Charlie. She looked like she was fighting with herself, judging by the funny twist of her mouth I knew she only got when she was battling indecision.
“Jayjay?” she finally said, letting out a long breath.
I smiled, and to her credit, she didn’t flinch in disgust this time. Almost.
Defence Against the Dark Arts had been my favourite lesson for a long time. Even though my Dad comes in to give talks every now and again. Which is embarrassing. No, even after seventeen years of hearing ‘omigoditsharrypotter!” I have not become immune.
He’s my dad for Merlin’s sake!
Luckily, Charlie knew next to nothing about him until I clued her in.
No Daddy today, however, so there was no squealing. Thank you Merlin.
“Alright Seventh years!” Professor Penelope said, tapping the desk with his fingers, his greased black hair slicked back against his skull. Edward Penelope may have looked a bit like the back end of a bull but he had been a tremendously talented Auror in his (long past) hey day “Today we will be learning Patronus Charms.”
Aw bollocks. If there’s one thing I can’t do it’s the patronus charm. It’s really embarrassing because my dad is famous for casting his at thirteen.
“You can work in pairs,” Penelope was saying “choose yourself, if you so wish”
Charlie glanced at me from under her hair, smiling. I rolled my eyes good naturedly and nodded, agreeing to her silent ‘partners?’
As it turned out, the lesson was more than chaotic. It took Charlie ten minutes to produce a cloud of white mist, and another forty minutes for it to take some sort of form. It still looked like a blob, but at least it had legs.
Mine was no better than a whisp of white mist, so I gave up trying after the first half hour.
Still, it was a lot of fun, taking the piss out of Yvaine Lennox’s attempts to flirt with David Bleach and laughing at the weird, squeaky way Professor Penelope would clear his throat every now and again.
Then, somehow, and I thank Merlin for this, little Hamish something or other managed to poke himself in the eye with his wand and Professor P. had to escort him to the office. So we ended up doing nothing whatsoever.
“Y’know, I’ll bet we have a test on the Patronus, just because we did nothing for the last hour.” Charlotte said, laughing, as we left the classroom. I laughed with her, although I could feel the blithering humdinger buzzing away at the back of my mind screaming ‘you can’t cast a patronus, Dung brain!’
Although maybe I’ve been listening to Auntie Luna for too long.
Either way, I am royally screwed if that happens.
“Jamsie…” Demeter whispered, stroking my cheek as we sat in the common room after lunch. I looked up at her from the Daily Prophet I’d been trying to read. I say trying because it’s bloody difficult when someone has hot as Demeter’s breathing in your ear.
Charlotte had not graced us with her presence, something which, if im not very much mistaken, had saved my girlfriend from another trip to the hospital wing.
“Why’d you leave?” She said softly.
Crap. I hadn’t told her, and I knew Charlie wouldn’t want her to know.
“Erm…” I said “erm…erm…”
“Erm?” She asked, the softness gone from her voice, replaced by acid “you and Phillips were gone for four days and all you can say is Erm?”
“It’s private.” I said finally, going for an air of finality but failing.
“Too private to tell your girlfriend?”
“Look Dee, it wasn’t even for me, why we went, so if you really need to know ask Charlotte. I’m sure she won’t hex you that badly.” I was being sarcastic, and an ass on top of it all but I couldn’t prevent it.
She huffed and stuck out her lower lip, fluttering her eyelashes. I rolled my eyes and left her standing there, knowing we’d make up later.
I used to get very nervous when I first got my Captains badge, because I was scared shitless that I’d screw up big time. I didn’t, of course, show it.
But I didn’t screw up. We won the cup, made Daddy proud and all the rest of it.
Didn’t stop my nerves, even though we hadn’t taken on anyone new.
“WOOD!” I bellowed, for once using Splinters’ real name for maximum impact “Will you play properly? This has to be FLAWLESS!”
Splinters said something very rude, before hitting the bludger towards Bludgers with such force, that he had to swerve away from it.
“Are you CRAZY?” Bludgers shrieked, which I must admit was interesting. I’d never heard his shriek.
“He’s just pissed.” Becky said, ruffling Splinters’ hair as she flitted past him on her broom. He growled and swung his bat, fortunately missing her by several feet. She was a quick flyer.
“WOOD! Will you STOP trying to hit my team!?”
He just gave me the finger. Lovely boy, that one.
“Come on!” I shouted, throwing the quaffle to Tom, who passed to David “Let’s go again!”
We three chasers didn’t pause for twenty minutes, when we stopped for a breather.
Then I noticed Charlie had come down to the pitch. I was about to go over and say hi but I realised that I wasn’t the only one who had seen her. Splinters, bad mood forgotten, had flown down from the air, with a massive goofy smile on his face, and sat down with Charlie. He was talking animatedly and she was laughing. No, I thought, he was not allowed to make her laugh!
Then I stopped myself. What the hell was I thinking? I shook my head, trying to force that rather irrational thought out of my head.
And then I flew down.
“Charlie boy!” I said, jovially, thumping her on the back. She laughed, shoving me playfully, as is our way.
I may have imagined it, but I don’t think I did, but Splinters may just have glared at me as Charlie slung a casual arm over my shoulder and ruffled my hair.
“Tony was just telling me about how you were yelling at him.” She said, but she was smiling so much I knew she wasn’t angry.
“Only ‘cause he tried to hit Becky with his bat.” I said, grinning at that little twinge of satisfaction when Charlie turned to Splinters and raised her eyebrows.
“I’d go up and tell her to kick your arse,” she said, glancing up at Becky’s red form.
“Go on then.” Splinters challenged in a somewhat flirtatious tone. Charlie cocked her head to one side, clearly not getting it.
She shook her head.
“Aw come on Charlotte,” Splinters said, taking hold of her arm and tugging her towards his broom. She shook her head, and with a smile, removed her hand from his and with a wave to me, left the Quidditch pitch. Splinters looked at me questioningly.
“She doesn’t like flying.” I said, watching her retreating form.
So, it was pretty difficult to write because i actually had to show Demeter as a nice person, which was a lot more difficult than i thought it would be.
I really appreciate feedback, so please leave a review and let me know if i can improve, or even just let me know of your opinion :)
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