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Chapter 10 : Christmas and Back to School
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I have to say, Christmas is fun. Even when I’m grounded. They give Hugo tons of presents, which means they have to give me tons of presents. It’s a fun time. They’ve already given me several books and a new carrier for Faithful.
Grandma sent us all Weasley sweaters. Once I heard Dad say that she still knits one with an F on it for Fred. That’s so sad.
“Earth to Rosie-cakes.” Ew. Don’t ever call me Rosie-cakes again, Dad. “We got you this big package here.” Which means they got Hugo a new broom and felt the need to get something else big for me.
He charms the box to float over to where I’m sitting and it settles down in front of me. “Here you go. Your mother had it specially ordered from Belgium.” Um. Ok. What could they have possibly had specially ordered for me from Belgium? I mean, I really have no clue.
I grab the box and pull it closer. Surprisingly, it’s feather light. Of course, that could just mean they charmed it that way. The paper on it rips easily and I pull open the flaps. Inside is a little scrap of parchment with words scrawled hastily in Dad’s nearly illegible writing.
It should be here any day now. You'll love it!
“Uh, thanks, I guess?”
Mum beams at me. “We ordered it weeks ago, but it hasn’t come in yet.” I’m sure. They probably just ordered it last week or something. Although they probably got Hugo his broom in August. A Shooting Star 1000. Dad promised that I could have a broom next year if I try out for my House Quidditch team. I almost told him something Mum would have considered ‘highly inappropriate,’ but thought better of it at the last minute.
Hugo scampers up the stairs, undoubtedly to put on some clothes and go try out his new broom, and Mum and Dad turn to me. Or on me. “Now Rose, we’re going over to Harry and Ginny’s this afternoon, and then to the burrow so-” Oh god, another lecture on my behavior around others. I wonder how long this one will go on.
An owl raps on the window in the middle of Mum explaining that just because I’m not exactly like my cousins (shocking that they noticed), I don’t need to pick a fight with them.
The owl is Harry’s, it has a streak on its wing where Lily poured some potion on it when she was little and it glistens in the light. “I wonder what Harry wants.” Mum murmurs under her breath as she lets Sickle in and takes the letter from his leg. As she reads it her face darkens. “Ron, apparently some death eaters have been causing trouble around his neighborhood and he and Ginny have been called in to help the ministry round them up.”
“I thought we got them all in Azkaban years ago.” Yes, because I’m so sure the ministry was able to get every single person on the face of this earth who supported old Voldemort.
Even Mum seems exasperated with him. “There will always be people who think Voldemort was right, Ronald. James, Al, and Lily are coming over now. They’ll probably be spending a few nights here while Ginny and Harry are gone. Rose, go put sheets on the bed in the spare bedroom. Al and James can stay there and Lily can sleep in your room.”
Some things never change. I remember when I was little, Harry and Ginny were gone all the time and James, Al, and Lily were always staying over here.
I think they spent as much time here as in their own home. Well, it may not have been that much, but they definitely did spend time here. I head up the steps and pull the sheets out of the dresser at the foot of the bed.
I make the bed and hear voices downstairs, voices referring to Mum as Aunt Hermione. Voices that mean I will be hiding in my room for as long as possible. I may not be as chicken as Rion about James getting his revenge, but I would rather have him get his revenge in an environment that I can fight back in.
Here I’m just a sitting duck. I sit on my bed and begin a letter to Rion, telling him about this stunning turn of events when James walks by my open door. By some miracle, or maybe it’s just because Sophie’s brilliant, his hair is still slightly pink. It’s mostly gone back to black, but some strands are still fuchsia. I wish I could do spells that good.
Albus walks by after James and takes the time to glare at him. His hair is back to normal, thank god. I don’t think I could take it if Rion’s spell lasted much longer than mine. I haven’t seen Victoire in about a week and a half, but her hair was definitely beginning to grow out. I’m sure she fixed it as soon my semi-permanent charm wore off. She’s been showing off her magic since the second she turned seventeen. I can’t wait until my birthday. Then I can apparate and meet with Sophie and Rion and stuff. Although I could probably convince Mum to let Sophie visit for a week or something this summer.
I finish the letter with a smiley face and sign my name with flourish. “Hey Dad! Can I use Pig?” Pig is Dad’s ancient owl. He’s almost 25 or some insanely huge age like that. Mum and Dad both have newer owls, but it’s easier for me to just use Pig.
“What’d you say?!” Dad shouts up the stairs.
“CAN I USE PIG?!” I scream back.
“Rose Weasley! If you need to talk to one of us, come down stairs and do it civilly!” Great. I grab my letter for Sophie as well as the one for Rion and head downstairs.
Mum’s in the kitchen making lunch the muggle way and Dad’s reading the sports section of the paper. “Can I use Pig, Dad? I’ve got a letter to send.”
Mum raises her eyebrows at me. “Again? I thought you used Pig just a week ago.” I did. But that was only because Rion hadn’t owled me yet and I needed an owl to send my letter to him. “And who are you sending this to?”
This is where my genius comes in. “Sophie. She’s the Ravenclaw muggleborn I’m friends with.” I smile up at them angelically (or at least not enough to make them suspicious). Mum nods and goes back to her cooking. “So can I, Dad?”
“Hmm? Oh sure. Hermione, did you know the Cannons are playing the Harpies next week?” I run off to find Pig and when I do I tie both letters onto his leg. He’s so tiny the letters almost dwarf him. “Take the first one to Sophie and don’t wait for a reply, ok? Then go straight to Rion. And don’t even think about letting his father answer it.” Pig hoots at me and flies out the window.
I don’t really like using Pig to send letters to Rion, but what choice do I have? At least Mouse (Rion’s owl) is trained really well not to show his father the letters. I think it’s the only thing Rion really makes him do.
“ROSE! GET YOUR STUPID CAT OUT OF HERE!” Damn. Guess I better go save Faithful from the two evil boys. You’d think she’d be smarter than that by now, but no. She just has to go antagonize everyone in her way. Hopefully she scratched them. Faithful is an extremely good judge of character, if you couldn’t tell.
“Rose, wake up. Rose. Rose. Rose. Rose.” An annoying little midget voice yammers on and on while its owner pokes me repeatedly in the arm. “Rose. Rose. Rose.”
“Ahhh! I’m up. Stop poking me!” Lily stares at me with her huge hazel eyes. To adults, they look full of innocence. To me, they look like the eyes of the devil himself. “What do you want?” Lily may not be my least favorite, but she definitely has the power to annoy me. And Hugo. And everyone else who can see past her innocent face which excludes any adults.
“Auntie Hermione says that if you don’t hurry up she’s going to leave you here and you can spend the next few months wishing you were at Hogwarts with your friends learning magic.” She recites this all in one breath like she’s reciting it word for word. Actually, Lily probably is reciting it word for word. She may be a cute little kid, but she has no brains whatsoever. She got the short end in her family, and believe me when I tell you that is saying something. “Are you coming or what?”
Oh right, Hogwarts! I leap out of bed, perform a series of gymnastics to get to my clothes which lay across a floor that is strewn with anything and everything, and change as quickly as possible. I’d forgotten that we went back to Hogwarts today! I get to see Sophie and Rion… Racing downstairs, I grab a piece of bread from the kitchen and run to the car.
Mum looks at me disapprovingly. “Your breakfast is a slice of bread? Rose, you’re an eleven year old girl, not an animal.” Yada yada, whatever. She has toast for morning which is the exact same as a slice of bread except it’s warm.
“Let’s just go!” I shout as I slam my passenger side door shut. James and Albus are already in the car, I notice as Mum begins to speed off. Dad must be staying at home with Lily and Hugo. I love that they care about us so much they don’t have to come see us off.
When we reach King’s Cross, Mum walks us in, but James runs ahead so as not to be seen with an adult. Even if I care enough to do that, Mum wouldn’t let me. The only reason she let him was because she feels so bad for him and Albus and Lily since Uncle Harry and Aunt Ginny haven’t come back yet. There was this psycho going through blowing up all these muggles in his way, although since he’s out in the country, that’s only been a few.
We head through the barrier and the train is already waiting. Mum leans down and kisses me on the cheek. “Remember to owl us and pull those grades up. I don’t want to hear from Neville or Minerva that your work is barely acceptable. You’re a Weasley, you have the brains to be getting E’s.” Yeah yeah. I suck, so what else is new?
“Sure Mum. Anything you say. Can I get on the train now?” She nods and hands me Faithful’s cat carrier as well as my trunk. She turns and says a few words of encouragement to Albus, who looks like he might cry. What a baby. “Bye Mum,” I say loudly as I head over to the train and she doesn’t even look up. I head down to a compartment and watch out the window for Rion to get here.
After a few minutes, he appears in with his father. Since I’m inside, I can’t hear the pop, so it looks weird for him to just appear like that. His father looks really serious and Rion keeps nodding as though he’s taking in every word Mr. Malfoy says.
He heads over to the train and I wave for him to come to my compartment. When he does, he’s grinning. “Hey Stranger. Good winter break?” Peachy.
“Bet it was just as good as yours.” He winces and sits down next to me. “Your father seemed a bit serious out there. What was that all about?” I’m a curious person, I just have to know what it was that Rion’s dad seemed so obsessed with.
“Oh, he was explaining to me for the millionth time that blood purity is a serious thing and I need to make friends with people who are closer to being equal to me. He hates you.” Good to know.
“I’m so hurt,” I say, and sniff pitifully. Rion snickers and we continue to chat about meaningless things. The train starts up and for the first time I realize we’re still missing Sophie. “Where’s Sophie? Shouldn’t she be here by now?”
Rion shrugs. “Who knows. Maybe she has decided not to associate with us anymore. Might have lowered her social status too much.” Oh yeah, and maybe my mum decided that grades mean nothing. It’s all possible.
At the moment the train door swings open and Sophie struts in. She looks livid, which is not a good sign. “What’s wrong with you?” Sophie turns and glares at me, so I shut up. She can use magic better than I can, so shutting up is probably my best option.
“Hmm, what’s wrong with me? I don’t know.” She tucks her hair behind her ear and the sleeve of her robe pulls up enough for me to see her arm. My eyes widen and Rion’s mouth drops open. “Yeah, saw it did you? Well guess who did it to me. Guess.”
“Uh, your worst enemy?” Rion asks and Sophie’s eyes flash in a way that proved she actually did not want us to guess. “Sorry.”
“Your cousin!” She shouts at me and I cringe. I should have figured one of them would take revenge eventually. It sucks that they did it on Sophie though. “I’m going to kill him very dead. We need to think of something worse to do to him.”
“Just because he charmed your skin a bit-”
“A bit?” Sophie shrieks. “My entire body minus my face is rainbow colored!” Wow, that was some powerful spell. I know I couldn’t do something like that. Of course, James is way older than me, so that could be part of it. “That boy is going to regret the day he was born. I am going to do whatever it takes to get back at him.”
Going a little overboard there, Sophie. I love it. “Awesome, when can we start? What are we doing?”
“Wait a minute,” Rion cuts in. “I don’t want to start a war with a bunch of older students who know more magic than we do. That’s kind of dangerous.” And dangerous is my middle name. Well, I don’t actually have a middle name, but you know what I mean. I like danger.
“We need revenge, Scorpius,” Sophie tells him coldly. “My rainbow skin is not going to be forgotten about. We are going to cause James Potter as much pain as he deserves. I will use every Ravenclaw talent that is at my disposal and you two will try to scrounge up a few talents to help me.”
That’s fine with me as long as I get to be a part of the prank. “You have any ideas yet?”
Sophie nods evilly and Rion groans. “Oh lovely. Being friends with you two is scary. I don’t want to get in loads of trouble with McG and the rest of them.” Oh, deal with it, Rion.
“Deal with it, Malfoy. We’re going to get revenge and you will help us.” Rion shrugs and takes out a book, giving it to Sophie. “The Top Fifty Pranks for Students? I love you, Malfoy!”
Rion glances at me with a slight grin. “I go from being enemy number two to her hero. Go figure.” I laugh and Sophie glares at me.
“Oh, go glare at someone else. I’m not scared of you.” She continues to glare at me and I inwardly shudder. I am a tad bit scared of her. Just a teeny bit. And the second I know magic better than her, that tiny bit of fear is going away for good.
When she glances back down at the book, Sophie grins. “You are my favorite friend, Malfoy. I love you more than Rose.” Yes, because that information wounds be greatly. I think I’ll cry myself to sleep tonight.
Just as I’m thinking that, the compartment door slams open. It’s James, with one of his buddies. “Hello, ladies. Liking your new skin, Arron? It suits your… personality.” I put my hand on Sophie’s shoulder to keep her from leaping at James, think better of it, and remove my hand. If she wants to leap at James, that’s his problem.
“This is war, Potter. Deep psychologically painful war.” She sounds pissed and I’m just glad her anger isn’t directed at me. That girl can hold a grudge like no one I’ve ever seen before. It’s absolutely terrifying in an awesome kind of way.
“Ooh, big words for a little firstie.” He glances down at Rion and laughs. “Love the company you’re keeping these days, Cousin. They seem so… in need of help.” He’s clever. Even Albus managed to insult us better than that.
“Go away, James. You bore us.” I say this in my most bored tone, even though I really just want him gone so we can start planning our big prank.
“Your little girlfriends are defending you Malfoy, isn’t that sweet?” Um, I thought that last comment was directed at me, not him. How are we defending him? “Of course, everyone knows Malfoys don’t have the guts to defend themselves. Girls have to do it for them.”
Sophie pulls out her wand and points it at James and his friend who are cracking up. “Go away, Potter. If you don’t I will hex you within an inch of your life, understand?”
“We’re not scared of you, ickle firstie.” He does look a little paler than he used to though. James turns to his friend and says, “Come on, I’m bored.”
When the door closes, Sophie laughs. “He looked like he was going to have a heart attack! Now what are we going to do to him?”
I don’t know, she has the book. It turns out, this is a rhetorical question because Sophie opens the books and flips through it, muttering to herself. “Is there something wrong with her?” I ask Rion and he shrugs.
“Maybe she has deep psychologically painful issues.” We crack up, but Sophie doesn’t even hear us, so we go back to playing with Mouse and Faithful who have decided to wage war on each other. The rest of the ride to Hogwarts seems awfully long since we’ve lost Sophie to the world of books.
A/N: Hell froze over- I updated! Sorry for the wait. Life and my original stuff caught up with me.
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