Chapter 1 : Three strikes and you're out, what about four?
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A/N: Don't own it, don't have money, don't sue!
No one dared move, for fear of laughing. Well, a few did, only cause they were at the back of the crowd and wanted to see what everyone was staring at. But, by the time everyone saw what was going on, no one moved. Ron and Hermione had been going nuts since yesterday, they hadn’t seen Harry since potions. Snape made him stay after. For not doing his homework, of course (what else would it have been for?).
They had been so worried, they had even gone to see Dumbledore. While he wouldn’t tell them where Harry was, he did assure them that he was fine.
Ron and Hermione had been worried that Snape had snapped and killed Harry, but apparently, that was not what had happened.
“Stop it!” Harry growled at Snape, “you’re twisting it the wrong way!”
“Shut up, Potter!” Snape growled right back. “You don’t know what you’re doing. YOU’RE the one turning it the wrong way!”
“I never should have let you play with it!” Harry argued. “You’re taking all the fun out of it!”
“Me? You’re the incompetent teenager! Now, let go, and let me try again!”
Neither of the two speaking seemed to notice the group of fifteen students that had come into the classroom, and only argued more. How had this happened?
“Hey!” Harry was yelling now, “That’s cheating! Why bother if you’re not going to do it right?”
“It’s getting the job done, isn’t it Potter?” Snape replied, his tongue between his teeth in concentration. “It’s working.”
“Give it back!” Harry snarled.
“Fine, have it!” Snape retorted. “But you’ll never get it that way!”
“You don’t have to just sit there! You could help while I’m doing it!”
“Fine, come closer.” and the two did just that.
How, I am sure you are wondering, does what these two are doing have to do with an excuse for not doing homework?
About half way through class, Harry Potter came bursting through the door, panting, and sweaty.
“Thank you for joining us, Mr. Potter.” Snape called to him. “Detention tonight, and 20 points.”
Harry looked ready to open his mouth to reply, but in the end, decided to let it go. He looked around to see where Hermione and Ron were sitting, and joined them at the table.
As soon as the class resumed, Harry leaned over to Hermione and whispered, “This is all your fault, Hermione! That damn thing you gave to me is too addicting.”
Hermione’s eyes widened, and then she replied, “That’s why you’re late? I gave that to you last night! What did you do, stay up all night and try to solve it?”
He didn’t say a word, and his silence told Hermione that she was correct.
“If everyone would take out your homework, I’ll be coming around to collect it while you get started on your class assignment.”
Ron and Hermione noticing, Hermione spoke up, “Oh, Harry! Not again!”
“I told you, Hermione,” Harry snapped, “it’s all your fault!”
They were arguing so much that neither of them had noticed Snape walking towards them. Ron, however, did, and tried to get their attention to tell them, but they were ignoring him, to intent on their bickering.
“Miss Granger, would you care to join Mr. Potter tonight in detention?” Snape asked, coming up behind them.
Hermione held her mouth shut and shook her head.
“Homework.” Snape said. Hermione all but dove under the table to retrieve her homework from her bag on the floor. Ron, with a little less enthusiasm, also took out his homework. They handed it to Snape, who remained standing by the table, glaring at Harry.
“Well…?” he prompted.
Just as Harry was about to open his mouth, Snape cut him off, “See me after class.”
Throwing another glare at Hermione, Harry began to take out his potion ingredients and started to prepare for whatever it was they were supposed to be doing. Glancing around the room, he saw that all the other students had done what he had, and all were awaiting instructions. Snape, however, was still over by Malfoy, apparently answering some questions.
Checking to make sure that Snape was still busy with Malfoy, Harry slowly reached under the table, grabbed his bag, and pulled it into his lap. Making another check, Snape was still busy, and Harry slowly and carefully, and as quietly as he could, he began to open his bag. Once it was opened enough for his hand to go through, he reached in and began grabbing things at random, searching for one particular thing. Once he found it, he felt a surge of glee. He then slowly pulled his hand back out of the bag and began to play with what he had grabbed.
Unfortunately, he forgot to check where Snape was. Out of the corner of his eye, he could see Hermione trying to get his attention. Probably to tell him to put it away, or something like that, but he just ignored her… pity.
It felt as though someone had dowsed Harry in ice cold water as he heard Snape’s voice by his ear, and saw Snape’s pale, thin hand slowly, but deliberately, pull the object from the students frozen hands.
For the rest of the class, Harry felt like someone on death row. He had been late, didn’t have his homework, and he was playing with something in class. Three strikes, that’s how many chances people get, right?
He knew he was going to die, it was all he could think of, and therefore, his potion was horrid. Worse than Neville’s potion. Harry almost didn’t care, almost. Didn’t that count as another strike? If three strikes meant death, what on EARTH could four strikes mean?
The bell rang. As the students around him began packing their belongings, they threw some sympathy glances at Harry, which clearly said: ‘Sorry about what happened, but… better you than me, mate.’
Snape waited until the last student was well clear of the door, before closing it, and then approaching Harry.
“Oh! Look! Professor!” Harry was laughing, tugging on Snape’s sleeve so he could see too.
“Yes, Harry, I see!” Snape said, “There is no need to pull at my clothes.”
“Ha! And you said we would never finish it if we didn’t cheat!” Harry replied.
“I know, I know, you were right. Ok?”
Someone among the class must have made a noise, for suddenly both Harry and Snape looked up from their positions on the floor, sitting knee to knee, Indian style. Immediately, Snape looked completely mortified. Harry, on the other hand, simply scanned the faces of the crowd, looking for one in particular.
Finding the person, Harry beamed.
“Hermione!” Harry cried out, hopping back up to get off the floor, “I did it! Well, WE did it, I mean! Snape was just going to take all the stickers off and do it that way, but I told him that would be cheating. But, we did it!”
With that, he shoved the completed Rubik’s Cube in her hand, and took his seat, ready for class.
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