“So, tell me, whose class you enjoyed most? Now that we have had time to get use to things, you must know which one you like,” asked Madison as she sat down beside me on the sofa in the Slytherin common room.
We had been in Hogwarts for nearly two weeks. Right now, it was Friday of the second week. I knew why she was asking me this. She asked my last Friday, also, but I didn’t have an answer because I honestly didn’t know. I still don’t really know. It is obvious which classes are Mackenzie’s and Madison’s best. Madison is excellent in Potions and Defense, while Mackenzie is good at Charms and History of Magic. I appear to be decent in all of my classes, except for charms. I really hate charms. Maybe it is because of Professor Flitwick’s annoying voice, or maybe I just don’t have a knack for that class.
I looked up from my Transfiguration homework and smiled at Madison. “I think I like Transfiguration best. It’s fun. Moreover, the fact that Professor McGonagall is an animagius is awesome, although, I love the way Professor Apollo’s voice sounds. I would rather listen to him than McGonagall, but she’s interesting. I loved it when she gave those two troublemakers, Potter and Black, detention for goofing off. The whole thought of Snape being friends with the Gryffindor girl is disgusting, and seeing them sitting together in class makes me want to puke up my breakfast and lunch.” Madison snorted when I looked at her. My nose was crinkled and my eyes squinted in an effort to look disgusted while adding a hint of humor. I’m still not use to the whole “trying to be funny without sarcasm” thing.
“Wait! Hold on! I can’t remember, I know you told me before, but, which is which?” Mackenzie popped up from behind the couch, startling Madison and me. She was on the ground trying to pick up all the beads of her broken necklace. I failed to understand why she didn’t just use magic. I shook my head at the girl, knowing that she knew which was which, but she has become very fond of me telling her, for some reason.
“Potter is the one with the short, messy, black hair and glasses, and Black is the one with long, black hair. Snape is the pale one; I think you know that though. I really cannot understand why you keep asking me about Potter and Black.” I looked down to my book to continue reading.
“You know, that Black guy is really cute,” Mackenzie said, obviously not hearing my last statement. A form of shining awe filled her eyes.
“First, yes, you have told me that before, and second, gross. He is a Gryffindor and a traitor to his family. You do realize that, right, Kenz?” I looked at her, hoping my eyes showed a mixture of stern accusation.
“I do realize that, yes. It isn’t as if I said I wanted to date him, I only said he’s cute. There’s nothing wrong with that. He has a very beautiful family, from what I can tell. I mean, have you seen Narcissa? She’s so beautiful.” Sometimes, Mackenzie’s obvious love of beautiful and well-known families makes me gag. It seems there are plenty of things that I am unable to comprehend lately.
I closed my book before I even started, set it on the table in front of the couch, and walked out of the common room. It was Saturday, I should have been outside, where it was nice and warm. I should have been sitting under the tree by the lake, not inside listening to Mackenzie babble on about Sirius Black.
I walked over to the shaded area beside the lake, lay down, put my hands behind my head, and crossed my legs. Above me, clouds moved and birds flew. It was odd to see things I was sure didn’t exist at my own home, things that were everyday things here at this school. For the first time in my eleven years I finally noticed the smaller things. It felt good, to be able to take a deep breath and breathe in fresh air, but it felt even better to be alone. I was finally able to close my eyes and not worry about a smack on the wrist. It felt good, until the peacefulness was interrupted.
“You alone?” I opened my eyes and saw Severus Snape looking down at me with a curious expression. He never approached me, so whatever had made him do it now was wholly unknown to me. I nodded my head and shifted my body to the right a bit so he could sit beside me. He opened his tattered potions book and began reading.
“You know what, Severus? It’s Saturday. You need to close the book, set it down, and enjoy the time you have away from classes.” When he failed to close his book, I reached out my hand, grabbed it, shut it, and laid it on my other side. I nearly laughed at the look on his face. At first, he seemed slightly annoyed, but when I closed my eyes, he simply took a deep breath and leaned against the tree.
“Severus?” Once I said his name, I complete forgot what I was going to say. How much more pathetic can my mind get today? I decided to ask something else.
“Yeah?” Finally, he was relaxing a bit. I smiled and opened my eyes, looking up at him.
“Do you like it here? I mean, do you enjoy the time away from your family? I do, but I notice how a couple of girls in my dormitory miss there parents and siblings. Of course, I have no siblings myself, and I don’t much care for being around my parents a lot, but other people do. I find it strange. I cannot really understand the need to always be with people you have, well, always been with.” I continued looking at him. He simply stared in front of him, probably not really seeing anything.
He shook his head, “I don’t understand it either. I guess some people just have nice families or something. Why don’t you miss them? Your parents I mean. You are a Lewis. Aren’t all of you really close and everything?” Now he looked at me. Something – sadness maybe – shone through his eyes. A very un-lady-like like snort escaped my nose. Once again, I looked away without answering. After a few minutes of silence, he stopped looking at me and closed his eyes.
“Today is really nice. I am glad it is Saturday.” I pushed myself up into a sitting position and joined Severus against the tree.
“Why do you talk like that?” he asked
“So proper. I haven’t heard anybody talk like that, especially somebody our age.” I shook my head while laughing silently.
“It’s the way I was raised, Severus. I was raised to be as eloquent as one can be. That includes proper speaking and a decent vocabulary.” I looked at him, and noticed him staring at me. His eyes held no emotion as he nodded his head in understanding. He cannot understand.
“Pureblood properness and eloquence taken to the next level.” He sounded disgusted, and suddenly, I didn’t understand.
“Do you have a problem with that?” I asked bitterly as I sat up and kept my gaze locked on his. He jumped back slightly at my sudden change of mood before replying.
o, there’s not. Most pureblood families just aren’t quite so proper nowadays. You know?” He settled back against the tree and closed his eyes.
“Yeah, I know.” It was my turn to sound disgusted.
The rest of the day was amazing. I spent a lot of time under the tree by the lake, which I have officially deemed “my spot.” I might share with Severus and possibly the twins. We will see if they continue being nice. Only one problem occurred, which nearly ruined my whole day.
The sun was about an hour from setting. Tonight was to be a full moon. I loved the full moon, but I had been outside enough for one day.
I walked down the nearly empty corridor toward the Slytherin common room. Unbeknownst to me, I was being followed by a poltergeist. When I realized this, I was turning a corner to the right. Something hit me in the back of my head and water soaked my hair. I stopped dead in my tracks, not sure what had just happened, only knowing that I was standing in the corridor dripping wet. I knew I was being followed, but by this point I was the only person in sight. I turned around and looked up. Sitting on a statue to my right was a type of ghost. He was ugly, with a wide head, beady eyes, andcolorful clothing. In his hand sat a large blue balloon that I figured was filled with water.
“Who are you, and what in the world do you think you are doing throwing those things at me?” I asked, trying not to let my angry side get the better of me. The ugly ghost smiled widely at me before answering.
“Hello, little firstie. I’m Peeves, the school poltergeist.” Suddenly, he threw the last balloon right at my face, before flying off, laughing wildly with joy.
I stood there in shock, before stomping my foot, something I would no doubt be punished for at home, and continuing my journey to my common room. Unfortunately, my parents never taught me a drying spell, so I had no choice but to leave a trail of water behind me.
I walked into the common room after stating the password. Once inside, I saw Mackenzie, Madison, Severus, and a few older people I did not recognize. Madison jumped up and hurried over to me. Taking in my appearance, she shook her head.
“Peeves?” I nodded my head, and she continued, “I don’t know any drying spells. You could always just take a shower and put on some dry clothes, but you will drip water all over the carpet. Kenz, do you know any drying spells?” Maddie turned to look at her sister, who was trying not to laugh, but failing miserably. She shook her head, much to my utter disappointment.
I looked over to Severus. He looked at my briefly and let out a quiet snicker. He picked up his wand, pointed it at me, and mumbled a spell. Next thing I knew, I was dry. “I really don’t understand you people. She would be drying if you would have just let her upstairs to change instead of keeping her down here soaking wet,” he said dryly before looking down at his book, probably potions. I walked over behind the couch where he was sitting. I leaned over the back and wrapped my arms around his neck. He immediately stiffened at my touch, and I pulled away quickly.
“I guess Kenzie is having a bad influence on me.” I would have told him thank you and then apologized, if I had less pride; I don’t think getting drenched by a ghost and standing in the common room like a wet cat is something to be proud of. I made my way up the stairs before ripping my clothes from my body and jumping in the shower.
Now I sat by the window in the common room. It was a couple of hours past curfew, and I was thinking about everything that happened today, trying to take it all in. Severus and I must have sat outside together for at least three hours before he said something about lunch and began to walk away. I called after him and held up his potions book. He walked back and grabbed it, all the while avoiding my eyes. I was not completely sure if this made us friends or not. Iwas not experienced in that area. It was one of the things my parents had failed to teach me. For some reason, I wanted to be his friend. Maybe itwas because I hated that he only had Lucius and Evans, of all people.
I looked out the window and up at the brightly shining full moon leaving a brilliant reflection in the lake. I began to remember a story Miss May, my nanny, told me when I was eight years old.
I sat on my bed late at night, unable to sleep. I knew it would only be another minute before my nanny would open my bedroom door to check on me. When she finally did, I jumped out of bed and ran over to hug her tiny waist. She patted my head, picked me up, and walked over to my bed. She laid me down before sitting down next to me. I moved so I could place my head in her lap while her fingers unconsciously brushed though my long, black hair. This was a weekly thing for us. I grabbed the teddy bear lying not a foot from me and hugged him tightly to my chest
“Tell me a story, Miss May,” I pleaded.
“What about, deary?” she asked, she blue eyes shining brightly.
“I want to hear the story you told me about the boy. You remember. You told me a long time ago. Well, I want to hear it again. Please, Miss May.”
“Oh, my dear Achindra, that was not just a story. It was true. It happened about three years ago, before I came here to take care of you. There was a boy. I knew his parents quite well; they were very good friends of mine. We all went to Hogwarts together. You remember not to tell your parents this story, correct?” I nodded my head so she would continue, knowing I would keep my promise. “It was a very long time ago. The girl and I were sorted into Ravenclaw, while the boy was in Hufflepuff. Now, don’t let that get to you, deary, he was a very brave man indeed. Not long after school, they married and had a beautiful son. The boy was very smart and very adventurous. When he was not inside helping his mother and father he would wander around outside, exploring everything. The boy was a very curious young lad.
“One night, though, when he was outside, something bad happened. The moon was full and a wolf-man, a werewolf, was outside in the woods. He saw the little boy and ran into his yard. He attacked the boy, biting him on the neck. The poor lad nearly died. His parents found him after the wolf-man left and rushed him to St. Mungo’s as fast as they could apparate.
“I remember sitting beside the boy in his hospital room while the healer told his parents that he had indeed been bitten, and about how he would change every full moon. They begged her to heal their son, to prevent the pain he would have to suffer, but she could not. Now every full moon, the boy’s bones break, change, and he turns into a wolf, unable to access the human inside of him. It is a very painful and dreadful thing.
“Now listen to me, deary. No matter what your parents tell you, I want you to nod your head and tell them they are right, even if you don’t think they are. I know it will not be long before they begin to tell you about the people they call monsters, the people they do not think deserve to live, but do not truly believe them. There is no antidote for being bit by a werewolf. There is no way to prevent the pain. It is a curse, not something they ask for. It is not something they deserve to go through. They are people, as are we. I want you to remember that, deary. Every time you look at the full moon, remember the young boy, remember what I and your parents tell you. It is up to you to decide whether you believe them or me. I trust your judgment.
Not a day goes by that I do not remember my old friends and their son. I miss them terribly, and I hate that they must go through so much, being so young. I am not sure I could handle it myself, but I’m not as strong of a person as they.”
I nodded my head in her lap. She moved out from underneath me and sat my head upon my pillow. She bent down to kiss my forehead, her curly red hair brushing against my face as she told me goodnight.
After that night, I began asking her to tell me more stories about the boy and his parents. It was nearly two years later when I overheard Mother and Father talking in his study.
I was walking down the hall toward my room. Just as I was about to walk past my father’s study, I heard something that caused me to stop dead in my tracks. Father’s voice called out a series of colorful words. Father almost never swears unless he is mad. I stopped beside the closed door to listen, thankful for my few years of experience eavesdropping outside his study.
“Read this article in the Daily Profit, Neil.” Father’s voice sounded angry. A few minutes passed before he began speaking again.
“I just don’t understand. Why doesn’t the Ministry get rid of these monsters? This is the third person a werewolf has attacked in two months. It’s bad enough they let the thing bite a Mudblood and don’t deal with it, but now the monster has killed a Pureblood. A Pureblood! Why in the name of Salazar doesn’t the monster attack more Muggles at least then it will be doing some good in this world. Do the beasts think that by taking the blood of somebody who it pure that they themselves will be cleaner too? That would make it worse more than anything could. Fools! Who cares if they cannot control their actions? The Ministry is just as much to blame as they are.” Father was practically yelling. “Well, they will be getting rid of the thing soon enough.”
I could here the sound of his feet moving against the carpet. The sound was becoming quieter, more than likely due to him walking to the other end of the room to grab a book off his shelf. He always read when something was wrong. Why should this time have been any different?
“The Ministry will definitely handle it. I am sure of it. Just try to stay calm. There isn’t anything we can really do about it.” I could just imagine Mother laying her hand on Father’s shoulder in an effort to calm him down. A few minutes passed before either of them spoke again.
“I’ll go down stars and make you some tea,” Mother said. “I’ll be right back. Just read your book, dear.”
I quickly ran down the carpeted hallway to my bedroom, opened the door, and went to my bed. Moments later, Miss May entered my room, sat on my bed, and began to run her fingers through my hair. I looked up at her.
“It’s not even their fault. They can help it. Father said they can’t help it and you said it too, but he still wants them dead.”
Miss May must have known what I was speaking about because she shook her head and said, “No, they can’t control themselves, deary. You’re right,” before she began to hum me a lullaby. Neither of us were in the mood for stories.
Every full moon, I thought about the stories Miss May use to tell me. I thought about the look in her eyes when she talked about the family she was once so close to. I wondered who the boy was, and how he handled the monster inside of him. Looking up at the moon made me think about the nanny I once had, the nanny I wished to see again, the one I truly did care for.
Just as I stood up to make my way to my dorm, I heard footsteps coming from the direction of the boy’s dorms. I looked toward the stairwell and saw a curtain of black hair. Following the hair were pale skin and black pajamas. Severus Snape.
“What are you doing up?” I asked before he sat down in on the armchairs. He looked up at me, but only briefly.
“Can’t sleep,” he stated simply.
“I was just about to go to bed, but I’m honestly not very tired. Would you like me to keep you company?” I asked partly hoping for sleep, but partly wishing to stay in the common room with my new friend.
“Not really.” I glanced down at me feel then back at him, while he stared at the dying fire.
“Well, okay. If that’s what you want. Goodnight, Severus.” I made my down the stairs to my dorm without giving him time to reply.
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