Chapter 1 : Of iPods and Psychotic Herbology Teachers
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A/N: Just writing this to tell you a little bet of what’s in store. There will be…
-A game of strip-Gobstones
-A lot of drunken kissing
-A werecat with blue hair
-An evil Ravenclaw bitch with her eyes on someone else’s guy…
…and more. ;]
The train took off in exactly the same way it always did. A slow rumbling at first as the wheels began to turn, gradually speeding up…
I sighed, pressing my forehead against the window of the train. A warm, furry weight pressed against my shoulder – Rose Weasley, a fellow Gryffindor sixth year; and my best friend and favorite cousin. Albus smiled – Rose wasn’t exactly what one would call a “morning person.”
I seem to remember one morning in our first year when Everett Weasley set off one of his father’s firecrackers in the Common Room and woke her up and she nearly tore his eye out…
Everett was a seventh year Gryffindor, and was my cousin, (which meant he was also Rose’s.) The Weasley and Potter family trees intertwined confusingly, but I had gotten used to sharing all of his relatives with the vivacious redhead. At the moment, Everett was chatting excitedly with Stella Lovegood-Thomas. Stella was another of Rose’s and my closest friends.
She was also a werecat. (It’s a long story.)
Squeezed onto the seat next to Stella was my brother, James Potter. My brother was offhandedly stroking the Snitch he’d nicked from the school at the end of his fourth year. James was in seventh year with Everett.
Next to me, Rose was stirring. She twisted uncomfortably in her seat and yawned like a cat. I laughed soundlessly. Stella looked up from her conversation with Everett, her enormous eyes serene and calculating.
“You make sure her mouth doesn’t stay open for too long,” she said dryly. “Nargles could nest.”
James’ and Everett’s lips twitched, but I somehow managed to maintain a somber expression. “Of course. What an inconvenience that would be,” I replied to her as earnestly as possible, and she nodded and launched back into her conversation with Everett.
It was just so hard to take a girl with cobalt-blue hair seriously. But that was normal for Stella – something you got used to after a while if you hung around her long enough. When I had said goodbye to Stella at the end of his fifth year, her hair had been neon orange. She never seemed to stick with one color for more than three weeks at a time. Stella was about 5’5 and alabaster-skinned, with huge, bottomless eyes that could swallow a person up. She was a Ravenclaw, but she tended to spend most of her time with me and my friends.
Everett Fredrick Weasley was Hogwarts’ supplier of all things mayhem. He liked to cause chaos, a trait that my parents told him he had gotten from his father; my uncle. He was a photocopy of his father, tall and lanky with hair as bright red as Rose’s.
James and I looked almost exactly the same – the only real difference being that I was a year younger.
James loved to entertain the idea that I looked up to him and wanted desperately to follow in his footsteps. Yeah, right. I was just sick and tired of people getting the two of us confused.
After a few minutes of relative boredom, Rose sat up, twisting around in her chair and sifting through her trunk. She came back up with a strange, glowing little gizmo. It was rectangular and black, and was connected to two long wires that ended in small pieces of plastic. Rose stuck the plastic pieces into her ears fiddling with the strange little gadget.
“It plays music,” she explained as if it were the most obvious thing in the world. “Grandad Weasley gave it to me for my birthday.”
We stared at it in awe. Rose closed her eyes, pleased as always to be the center of attention, and dozed off again. But she was startled into consciousness when the compartment door banged open and three people burst inside.
Upon recognizing them, I rolled my eyes and turned my attention back to the window. Scorpius Malfoy, Felix Nott, and Brett Zabini weren’t people I spent my time mingling with. Quite the opposite.
They stood there in silence for a few moments while the words to an old Muggle song (“Miracle Drug” by a band called U2) blasted into my ears.
“…I want to trip inside your head, and spend the day there. To hear the words you’ve never said and see what you might say…”
When Malfoy finally seemed to register that there were, in fact, other people in the compartment, he took a step back, sneering down at us all. I glared at him, unimpressed.
“Oh, I see. A few Weasleys and Potters, and a circus freak,” he drawled. Stella’s eyes narrowed, but she didn’t retaliate. Instead she opened up her copy of The Quibbler and flipped through a few pages.
“How’s your granddad in Azkaban, Malfoy?” James asked, grinning sarcastically. Oooh… way to hit him below the belt, James… Sure, everyone knew that most of Scorpius’ relatives were locked up for generally being evil little fucks, but nobody mentioned it out of a mixture of courtesy… and fear of Malfoy’s vengeance. Scorpius’ pale features contorted with rage, and he for a moment he was silent.
“…I want to see your thoughts take shape and walk right out…!”
I paused the music for the sake of hearing more clearly. Plus, my eardrums were about to burst because the music was so loud, and I hadn’t yet found a way to change the volume.
Malfoy’s eyes were distracted by the movement of my fingers. His hand shot out from nowhere, grabbing my little iPod and twirling it around. He grinned at me maliciously.
“What’s this, Weasley?”
I opened my mouth, glaring at him, but he continued on before I could say anything.
“No matter, it’s mine now.” He stowed it away into a pocket of his robes, winking at me. James and Albus stood up, drawing their wands. The rest of us simply gave each other exasperated looks. Malfoy smirked at them, gave me a little sarcastic wave goodbye, and turned on his heel out of the compartment.
Albus fell back into his seat. “Bloody git.”
James frowned down at me, still on his feet. “D’you want me to hex him for you? Or better yet, take his head off?”
I shook my head, smiling, and said dryly, “Couldn’t figure out how to adjust the volume, anyway.”
The all stared at me in confusion.
“Today,” announced Professor Longbottom, “we have a special treat for all you students.”
Everybody groaned. The Herbology professor’s idea of a “special treat” usually involved a few near death experiences and a lot of slime.
Longbottom didn’t seem to notice. He led us into the greenhouse, where, waiting for us, was a collection of the most revolting plants I’d ever seen in my life. Stella’s immediate reaction was to gasp, run up to one, and start stroking it, murmuring, “Amazing, they actually exist! Have they eaten any student, yet?”
Professor Longbottom blinked in confusion. “No, actually… They don’t eat people, Miss Thomas.”
Stella crossed her arms and muttered something that sounded a lot like, "That's what you bloody think."
Professor Longbottom droned on and on about the magical properties of the Mimbulus Mibletonia, which he seemed to find completely fascinating, and the class gradually dissolved into more of a socializing opportunity.
It was our third day of classes, and I was already desperately anticipating the Christmas holidays. I yawned, leaning against the glass wall of the greenhouse.
“I want you to partner up with someone in a different house,” Professor Longbottom announced excitedly. “Gryffindors, pair up with the Slytherins. Hufflepuffs, pair up with the Ravenclaws.”
There were muted hisses from the Gryffindors and Slytherins. He was a great Herbology teacher, but when it came to people skills, Longbottom was clueless.
“Come on, now. Find a partner!”
I sighed and looked around the room in disgust. The Slytherins in my year that were taking Herbology were Felix Nott, Aishia Joel, and…
“Put on your gloves, Weasley.” A low voice whispered into my ear. “This won’t be fun and won’t be pretty, I guarantee you of that.”
I turned around to glare at the ear-whisperer. Scorpius Malfoy. “What the hell do you think you’re doing?”
He shrugged. “You’re my partner. Look – all the good ones are already taken.”
They – what?! It was true: Albus was working with Nott and Jeanne Bell with Aishia. I sighed. Damn.
Taking my sigh as an indicator of defeat, Malfoy smiled, snapping on his dragonhide gloves and grabbing one of the little potted, pulsating cacti. “Now,” he said, consulting the textbook, “Mimbulus Mimbletonia… It says here that they’re sensitive, so not to scare them by making any sudden movements.”
“Or you’ll end up soaked in slime.”
I nodded keeping my eyes averted from his face. Great. I knew this would involve slime. And working with Malfoy qualifies as a near death experience in itself.
“Hey. Weasley?” His voice was surprisingly soft and close to my face. I looked up and flinched – he was leaning over the table so that his face and mine were separated by about a sixty-thousandth of a millimeter.
Don’t freak out – that’s what he wants.
I raised my eyebrows, keeping cool despite the obnoxious throbbing of my heart. “Yeah?”
He blinked, seeming disappointed at my lack of reaction. Malfoy shrugged. “Better put on your goggles, too. Like I said – this is going to get ugly.”
I lay awake in bed, staring at the ceiling.
He was odd. Such a simple person– an arrogant, self-serving Slytherin moron. Nothing special about that. He had absolutely no complexity to him.
His lips warm on mine; his hands twined through my hair.
No! I shook my head vigorously, eyes squeezed shut. Bad picture! Cue the mental vomiting!
I sighed. He wasn’t bad looking. Far from it. He was bloody gorgeous, so much so that I wanted to hack him up for it. But – unfortunately for the world’s female population – he was also a fucking jerk.
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