Author's Note: Hello lovely readers! I'm updating so quickly again! Don't you love it? I can't really say the same for the next chapter though, I've written a version of it (although it's still not finished) and I don't like it much. It's funny, I suppose, but I'm not sure how realistic it is. So, I think it's going to have to be rewritten...
Anyway, to everyone who has asked me questions in reviews, they have all been answered. You can check them out whenever you want.
And I always love reading everyone's reviews, and new reviewers are always welcome (if you have any comments, questions, criticism, etc., even story ideas! I'll take them. I'll read over every single one and consider them thoughtfully before responding).
I must say this chapter troubled me a bit, I'm not sure how I feel about it. I'm not even sure if I think the title is suitable enough for it. All thoughts on it will be very much appreciated.
Lastly, chapter images are on the way (for 'Confidentialities' and 'Support' anyway)! Someone has taken up my request and I hope everything works out and I'm absolutely positive that when I get them they will be fantastical.
Well, on with the story! Thank you all for your dedicated reading and reviewing!
Down at the pitch that evening, Leighton and I slowly made our way into the Slytherin stands.
Fiona and Jenna were already there, up at the very top of the bleachers, so we decided to sit lower to the ground.
“Who invited them?” Leighton asked, jerking her head up at the two annoying girls as we sat down.
“I don’t know,” I replied as we both began to carefully surround ourselves with textbooks. Thankfully, the air was so calm that there wasn’t even a breeze so we wouldn’t have to worry about pages blowing in the wind or anything of the like. “Knowing them, they probably overheard the boys talking about having practice tonight and decided to invite themselves.”
Leighton snorted, “That sounds like them.”
“So, what do we have?” I asked as I looked at all the books around us, feeling almost too burdened to even begin this mountain of homework we had to get done this week.
“Well,” Leighton started nonchalantly, “we have two chapters to read for Charms, an essay in Transfiguration on the properties of becoming an animagus, one Potions chapter to read along with an essay on the properties and effects of the Amortentia potion, a chapter in Defense Against the Dark Arts, and another chapter in History of Magic.”
“Why exactly are we still taking History of Magic even though we’ve completed our O.W.L.S.?” I asked, annoyed that professors thought that they were being exceedingly generous by piling on the homework so ridiculously high. Here it was only the third day of classes and already I feel like I’m drowning in chapters and essays and more chapters and essays!
“I told you,” Leighton replied, impatiently. “History is an easy O. Honestly, all we have to do is stay on top of the reading and write a few boring essays. Anyway, the guy’s dead and barely even notices if we come to class or not. I don’t even think he reads the essays; all you have to do is ramble on a bit, make sure to mention the goblin wars a few times, and you’ll automatically get an O. And that O will look great on your transcript for when you leave Hogwarts and have to get a job.”
“Well, maybe that’s all nice and dandy for you,” I stated sarcastically. “But I already know what I want to do with my life and, trust me, goblin wars has nothing to do with it, unless I want to research about what not
“Whatever,” Leighton sighed, annoyed. “But you’re not dropping the class, so don’t even think about it,” she added, pointing her perfectly manicured finger at me accusingly. “Now,” she stated, changing the subject. “What do you want to do first?”
I pursed my lips, considering my options carefully.
Do I want to read a bunch of boring chapters or do I just want to get one of the essays out of the way for now?
“I’ll go with the Transfiguration essay,” I answered finally. “It seems easy enough.”
Leighton nodded, “Okay, I’ll work on the Potions essay and later we can switch and copy each other’s work.”
“Sounds like a good plan to me,” I mumbled as I took out my Transfiguration notebook and grabbed the text for the class. Turning to the chapter on Animagi, I began working on an outline for the rough draft of my essay.
About fifteen minutes later, I was already bored with this assignment. I looked to my left to see Leighton scribbling away furiously; she seemed to be on a roll with her Potions essay. In frustration and boredom, I began to tap my pen rhythmically against my notepad as I glanced up at the boys in the sky on their broomsticks.
On one side of the arena, I could see Tybalt and Talon practicing intensely as they hit a bludger back and forth to each other with their clubs.
On the other side, the three chasers—Graham Rookwood (older brother to Jenna Rookwood), Damon Greengrass (older cousin to moi
, but I’m not very fond of him so we don’t talk much) and Jefferson Rosier (older brother to Kenny); all seventh years—were flying around, passing the quaffle back and forth while also occasionally trying to catch Kenny by surprise as he scaled the hoops. Even so, they rarely managed to make a goal.
Kenny, being the keeper on their team, already knew all of their tricks so getting the ball by him was not easily done.
And then there was Scorpius, flying higher than everyone else, searching for the snitch he had set free.
I looked back down at my notebook and began doodling underneath the intro to my essay.
A few seconds later, my doodling took the form of a dress… well, at least a simple outline of one.
“Sirrah, you’re supposed to be writing that essay, not
drawing new designs,” Leighton suddenly scolded me.
I guess she caught me red-handed there, no point in denying it.
“I can’t help it,” I whined. “I thought coming down here and sitting out in the fresh air, watching the boys practice, would get the intellectual juices flowing, but I’m afraid the only juices flowing right now are the creative ones.”
“Well, then use those creative juices to get you through your essay,” Leighton demanded, logically.
I sighed, “It doesn’t work like that, Leighton. Not for me, anyway. You know that.”
She just rolled her eyes at me and went back to her own essay.
“I think it’s time to start working on my creations again,” I stated thoughtfully as I looked back up at the boys flying around. “We’ve been at Hogwarts for almost a week now and it’s been fun and all but it’s time to get back to work.”
“No, it’s time to get back to your essay,” Leighton replied, her tone implying annoyance.
“I will,” I stated, defensively. “But I still need to think about my future and my future requires lots and lots of dresses made by me, not boring Transfiguration essays I could write in my sleep.”
“That’s not the point,” Leighton said, reprimanding me. “The point is to graduate from Hogwarts with good grades so that we can be whatever we want when we’re finally free of this place.”
I considered her argument thoughtfully.
I suppose she had a point.
More than likely, my parents are not going to be supportive of my goal to have a job, especially not my goal be self-employed
in that job. No. Like I’ve said, they expect me to get married and have lots of lovely children.
Hence, if I want to have a business of my own, I’m going to need money of my own and if it comes to it, I might need a loan to provide me with the money I need to start this business. Hence, the goblins are going to need to be able to trust me to be fully capable of paying their money back to them if they give me a loan. This is why I needed good grades, to show that I am a hardworking, highly dependable, young woman.
So, I should really get back to this essay then, I suppose.
It’s not even that hard, to be honest. Transfiguration has always been my best subject.
“Uh oh,” I then heard Leighton mumble quietly.
I looked over at her in confusion.
“What?” I asked.
“This isn’t good,” she stated, her voice blank of emotion.
She wasn’t looking at her Potions book or her essay though; she was looking down at the entrance to the pitch.
I followed her gaze, and now I knew what she meant when she said it wasn’t good.
“You’ve got to be kidding me!
” I shouted, infuriated that of all places he
had the audacity to search me out here
on the Quidditch pitch surrounded by my fellow housemates.
Didn’t I warn him?
Didn’t I specifically tell him to stay far, far away from me?
Didn’t I threaten him and his perfectly shaped face of the serious nose breakage that my fist was just so achingly ready to cause?
So, what in the world was he doing here?
“If he doesn’t stop following me around I swear I am going to—”
“Sirrah!” Leighton stopped me; I looked to see her staring at me as if I were the most clueless person on earth.
” I asked, completely furious.
“I don’t think he’s here to bother you, I think he’s here to play Quidditch,” she stated informatively.
I glared at her and then focused my attention back to James.
currently surrounded by what appeared to be members of his own team, and, if that didn’t give it away, they were
all carrying broomsticks.
Okay, so maybe this didn’t require any nose breakage… but if he so much as tries
to speak to me I will not hesitate this time. I will sock him a good one if he thinks he can try and fool me again!
“So?” I stated defensively, crossing my arms over my chest as I turned back to Leighton. “He still shouldn’t be here. You know, it is just like those Gryffindors to come down here without even thinking that maybe another team had already reserved the pitch.”
Leighton just rolled her eyes and stood up, “Come on.”
“Hey!” I shouted as she suddenly grabbed my arm and quickly began dragging me all the way down to the pitch and across the grass toward the invaders. “Why exactly are we walking towards them?” I asked, finally giving in to her dragging me once we were halfway across the field.
“We can’t let them start any fights,” Leighton explained. “It’s too early in the year to have both teams in detention.”
Was that her only reason?
I then saw a shadow fly over me and looked up to see that the boys had also spotted the approaching group of Gryffindors.
Ty was the first to land in front of them, holding the unruly bludger tightly in one arm, Talon was close behind. Then Kenny and the chasers. And lastly, Scorpius.
“What are you doing here, Potter?” Ty questioned the moment he landed, his tone exhibiting authority and resentment.
Leighton and I were not far behind him and Talon.
“I thought my team could play a nice, friendly game of Quidditch,” James Potter answered calmly.
“Well, you can’t,” Talon stated, becoming territorial. “The Slytherin team has the pitch reserved until curfew. If you had checked with your head of house, you would have known that.”
I was surprised at how calm he was.
Why wasn’t he bothering to argue with them?
Usually when Gryffindors and Slytherins got too close to each other, tensions ran high on both sides. Everyone was always looking for a reason to start a fight. Especially the boys.
“I’m sorry, next time I will remember to check first,” James finally replied, still completely calm.
I watched them closely just as Scorpius slowly made his way to the front of the group.
“You can stay if you like,” he stated the moment he faced his rival.
“What?” I asked, though it was quiet enough that no one but Leighton heard me.
“What?” Potter, Ty, and Talon seemed to repeat all at the same time; all of them looking at Scorpius strangely, as if he had lost his mind.
I was starting to wonder if he had.
But I knew better. This was Scorpius we were talking about here. The only reason he was staying so calm was because of Rose. If Rose were to find out that he had started fighting with her cousins again, she would be very disappointed in him. And he couldn’t let that happen, not now that they had become secret friends.
Ah, the things I knew about Scorpius that no one else could ever know. It makes me so happy.
But anyway, here’s the deal: Scorpius and Rose have become “friends.” It’s true! I’ve seen it (this is what I have been doing while refusing to talk to Leighton). Now, instead of Scorpius watching Rose covertly in the library, they sit together and talk as they do homework! And you should see the secret looks they give when they pass each other in the halls or happen to make eye contact in the middle of class! Honestly, I’m starting to think there’s more going on between them than just simple friendship. I overhead Talon mentioning to Tybalt that Scorpius has been returning to the common room much later than usual after his nightly rounds these past two nights and I find it quite suspicious…
He doesn’t know that I know yet and I don’t plan on telling him either, but don’t think for a second that if he ever tries to cross me again, I won’t hesitate it to use it against him.
Suddenly an awfully nasal voice broke through my reverie, bringing me back to the here and now.
“Scorpius, you’re not really going to allow them to stay, are you?” Fiona stated, looking aghast. She and Jenna must have followed us down to see what would happen. “What will everyone say? They’ll think you’ve gone soft…”
“I couldn’t really care less about what other people think, Fiona,” Scorpius spat back at her. “Now, I don’t remember inviting you to watch our practice in the first place so if you don’t like the decision I’ve made then you and Jenna can leave.”
Ouch. That one had to hurt.
I smirked at Fiona, thrilled that Scorpius had finally told her where to go.
She just huffed and puffed herself up before storming off and out of the pitch, with Jenna in tow.
“Now,” Scorpius stated, putting Fiona out of his mind and returning to the conversation at hand. “Like I said, you and your team can stay as long as you’re willing to cooperate. Gryffindor can have one half of the pitch and we’ll take the other half.”
“You can’t be serious,” Talon stated, stepping up now. “You’re going to let them stay? After what this guy did to your sister on the train?”
Talon was defending me? Trying to protect me from James?
Why do I feel like we just opened up a whole new can of worms here?
“Talon,” I stated, surprising even myself as I stepped forward.
But the last thing I needed was another confrontation about what James Potter did to me.
I honestly don’t think I can take any more of it.
I took his arm and gently pulled him back, “It’s okay. Don’t worry about it.”
He looked at me, both shocked and sad, “But everyone knows what he did to you, S.”
“I know, but it’s over with,” I stated, forcing myself to stay strong and not to look at or make eye contact with James Potter. Talon stared at me like I was crazy and I quickly cut him off before he could try to say anything else. “Look, I don’t want him here anymore than you do, but Scorpius is the captain and it’s his decision as to whether or not they’re allowed to stay. So, if he’s willing to let the Gryffindors play their little game, then so be it. So, please, just let it go.”
He looked at me solemnly for a moment and then nodded, “Is that what you really want?”
No, but I surely didn’t want him to get into a physical fight over this and get detention all because of me.
“Yes,” I stated, trying hard not to falter.
“Okay, fine,” he eventually gave in. “But only because that’s what you want.”
I nodded, happily. “Good, now why don’t you and Ty get back to your bludger practice? I was thoroughly enjoying watching the two of you hit that horrid ball back and forth.”
“Really?” he asked, suddenly perking up. “I didn’t know you cared for the beater position…”
“Normally, I don’t,” I continued, doing my best to butter him up. “But you just have a way of making a task that is so crude and brutish, look so graceful and regal.”
“You think so?” he asked as he puffed up with pride, looking quite pleased with himself.
“I do,” I replied, smiling.
“Okay,” he said, perfectly contented now and ready to get back to practice. “Well, you haven’t seen anything yet.” He then turned to his partner, “Come on, Ty, let’s go show the lovely lady here how a beater’s job is really done.”
I smirked at his corny attempt at flirting with me.
“Yeah, Ty,” I added, looking over at the dark-skinned boy who was watching me carefully with a look that implied he knew exactly what I was doing, but I didn’t care. “Go show me.”
He smirked and shook his head, but began preparing to get back up in the air nonetheless.
Soon enough both beaters were back in the air, followed by everybody else on the Slytherin team.
“Hey,” someone suddenly spoke up just as Leighton and I were about to turn around and head back to our seats.
I turned to see James heading toward us. Once he was a few feet away, he stopped.
Good move, Potter. You don’t want to get too close to me.
“Look, I know you hate me but I just wanted to thank you for sticking up for us—”
“I wasn’t sticking up for you,” I stated coldly. “I only did that to keep my friends out of detention; it’s too early in the year to be losing house points.”
He surprised me by replying with a simple nod, accepting my answer. “Well, thanks anyway,” he added before quickly turning back to his teammates.
I stared at his retreating back, a little shocked that he had taken it all so lightly when I know my words and tone had been so perfectly cruel.
I quickly shook myself out of it.
No use wondering over James Potter and his complete inability to get angry.
This was a good thing.
This meant that I had gotten through to him and that he was now going to leave me alone.
Or, at least, that’s what it better mean because if he thinks he can coax me into being his friend or anything else, he’s dead wrong. We are no Rose and Scorpius. I will not let his antics of playing nice and staying calm get to me. We will not be friends and we will especially not be lovers. Ever.
I hope he understands that.
But who knows?
Boys are so thickheaded most of the time it’s almost impossible to get through to them no matter what you do.