Chapter 13 : Thoughtless
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Updating a lot faster than I thought. Pretty thrilled with that. Not sure when I’m going to start my new story. I’ve still got quite a lot in store for this one. And I’m kind of excited. Not entirely sure how its going to end. We’ll see.
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Title and Summary song:
“Thoughtless” by: Korn
I will not be drowned,
By your thoughtless scheming.
So you can try to tear me down.
Julien de Pontius had another girlfriend. It had only taken him two weeks to bounce back from his attempted-desecration of me to find another poor, unsuspecting soul. And “poor, unsuspecting” would be the nice thing to call his new gal. If it hadn’t been my roommate.
Marlow Starling had been my roomie for nearly seven years. She, of course, was one of those annoying, rich-bitch Slytherin girls that gossiped like chattering birds. Marlow Starling, was, I guess, pretty. She had long, flowing auburn hair and hazel eyes. She had that aura of “I’m so much better than you.” Personally, I thought she was like every other girl I lived with, but I was perhaps a little biased.
Ms. Starling knew she was the hottest Slytherin girl to walk the halls of Hogwarts. She wasn’t necessarily stupid either; she came from an old, pureblood family (like we all did) and was well-educated. Her speech, posture and skin were all flawless. She was typical old money, so I was less than impressed by her. She looked like everyone else in my house.
And the thing with Marlow Starling, is that you could never just call her by her first name. It felt weird. Like you couldn’t just say “Marlow” you had to say “Marlow Starling”. Maybe it was because she addressed everyone by first and last name. I only did the same back to her as a mockery; I’m sure she was aware of this, but was far above my childish antics. But I had to admit, she had a cool name. Nothing like “Capella Black”; a star in some constellation named for a she-goat. My family had major problems with naming kids after constellations. Surely they would have run out of stars by now.
As much as I absolutely hated Marlow Starling for being perfect, it was undeniable. She was beautiful, charming, intelligent, rich and even the perfect bitch. Starling was my ultimate competition in being the utter wretch of Hogwarts. And the thing was, she was so good at being a bitch, you didn’t even know it.
Marlow Starling knew how to perfectly sugar-coat every insult that you never figured out it was an insult until months later. Really. You’d be sitting in class drifting off into thought....and then you’d realize, “That bitch!”. I often suffered through these episodes throughout the years. It wasn’t that I was offended by the insult, of course not, it was that she was so damn good at it. Her bitchery was truly a caliber way out of my league. And that, I despised more than anything.
I saw them everywhere together. Meals, classes, the corridors. I’d even walked in the girl’s bathroom to find them sucking face on one of the sinks. It was like they were following me, deliberately snogging in front of my face. It was ridiculous.
To say that I was angry about this was an understatement. What had I done to deserve that? I wasn’t Julien’s girlfriend anymore, why did it matter so much to annoy me? They were being childish. Julien had had his fun with me (almost), he should just completely move on. I would have been exponentially happier if he had just chosen to act as though I didn’t exist.
The worst part about the whole ordeal...it hurt. It hurt to see him flaunting his new girl all over the place. I had to face it, Marlow Starling was everything I wasn’t. She was charming, popular, sexy. And although I didn’t really care about being any of those, it still hurt. Although I would never admit out loud, Julien had broken my heart.
No one knew of Julien’s little surprises for me either. He was so good at his scheme, that no one realized that he seemed to be everywhere I was, snogging Starling. I would never admit to Severus that this happened either. I’m sure he got curious as to why I was always in such a snappy mood after going to the loo (and witnessing another snog fest), but he never asked. I probably wouldn’t have told him anyway; there was no way I was going to let Julien win this one.
So, every time I saw Julien and Marlow Starling, I merely acted like nothing out of the ordinary was happening. Like it was custom to see you ex-rapist boyfriend and your princess roommate practically making babies everywhere you went. Like it was custom to feel your heart ripped out and stomped on by a troll every time you saw them.
I was becoming a ticking time-bomb. I knew that sooner or later, I was going to snap.
And it wasn’t going to be pretty.
“Trying to watch the match?”
Severus and I were currently seated on the edge of the Black Lake. It was freezing outside, but for some stupid reason, Sev wanted to be there. I figured it would snow soon enough; the clouds were collecting ominously overhead and my breath fogged with every sigh. The two of us were sitting against the old beech tree, but it hardly shielded us from the frosty gales of late November.
In the distance, fourteen figures could be seen zooming around, playing in the clouds. Most people were at the Quidditch game, Ravenclaw verses Hufflepuff, but Severus and I opted out. There were only so many arrogant prats I could take in a hour. Surely the game would fill my quota in seven seconds. But still, we braved the cold like our fellow classmates; the only difference being that we next to the slowly icing lake and they were in a giant crowd of screaming spectators.
Severus had caught me looking in the direction of the Quidditch Pitch. The booming sound of hundreds of teenagers yelling momentarily caught my attention. However, I scowled over at him upon snapping my answer.
“I know you’re such a Quidditch fan.” He drawled, lazily turning the page of his book. I didn’t even care to see the title of this new one. I tried hard to avoid it, actually.
“Don’t know why we’re sitting out here,” I huffed, pulling my cloak in tighter against my body, though the effort was futile. My exposed cheeks and ears were possibly getting frostbite; I couldn’t be sure since I couldn’t feel them, “Its bloody cold.”
“Then go inside,” I watched from beside him as his eyes darted back and forth over the text. I was amazed at the way he did it, I could never speak and read at the same time and successfully comprehend either one, “Maybe you’ll run into another one of de Pontius and Starling’s peep shows.”
I gritted my teeth, whether from the cold or the harsh blow his comment was, I didn’t know. I could have sworn I heard a faint hiss from between my clenched jaw. Severus didn’t react.
“Like I care.” I bit, my attempt at nonchalance an utter failure. The acidity was enough to melt a hole to the center of the earth.
“It was merely an observation.” Severus said, though not trying to placate the sudden flare of my temper.
I stood up, angry that he had noticed Julien’s pathetic attempts at trying to piss me off. And I was even more enraged by the way I was acting. Surely Severus knew now how much it got to me. I didn’t know what it was about Julien that made me react this way. Even the mere thought of his name sent my blood to a boiling point.
I pulled my cloak to me again, just needing something to grip onto as the wrath pulsed in my body. One good thing came of it; I couldn’t feel the biting winds of November anymore. All I could feel was the white-hot anger Julien ignited inside of me.
“Going somewhere?” Severus asked, his eyes still on that damn book.
“Anywhere.” Was my short response as I marched back up to the castle.
My walk was short, seeing as the adrenaline kept me going. That and the fact that as soon as I left Severus behind, I realized how freaking cold it was outside and nearly ran back to the warmth of the castle.
It was completely empty, something that I thanked Merlin for. There could have been some dire consequences for any person that walked past me and gave me the wrong look. I was in that kind of mood. So, for once, I was happy there was a Quidditch game. I really wasn’t into being charged with murder. At least not the murder of someone innocent. Someone with a name starting with “J” and ends with “ulien” might not be so lucky.
And while we’re talking about luck, I will fully admit that luck does not exist in my life. Unless it starts with “un” or “anti”. That’s the only kind of luck that exists in my bitter, pathetic world.
Which is why I will be damned if I didn’t cross the path of Julien de Pontius.
Why Julien was in the castle and not at the Quidditch Pitch will forever remain a mystery to me. That and the fact that Marlow Starling wasn’t with him, but rather three of his male entourage. I have yet to decide whether that would be considered luck. I don’t know if I would have rather taken on Starling or three burly Slytherin boys.
And people wonder why I’m such a negative bitch.
If they had shit like this happen to them on a daily basis, they wouldn’t think that.
He stopped dead when he saw me, his anecdote about something rather funny coming to an abrupt halt as soon as his eyes landed on me. His friends looked confused for a moment, but as their gazes turned to me, their faces broke out into three identical grins. I didn’t like the vibe already; something about their smiles gave me the feeling that they were mocking me. That they knew something I didn’t. I guessed in a second what that could have been: Julien had relayed his tale about nearly “scoring” with me to his buddies. Perfect. Just perfect.
“Capella.” His voice was still like silk, wrapping around me in a kind of velvety warmth. Julien said my name flawlessly, greeting me like an old friend. However, I knew his tone was nothing short of mocking. His arms were wide open, as though welcoming me for an embrace. I stayed rooted to the spot, my arms crossed over my chest in a defensive stance.
I know he must have taken my protective stance as a reaction to him, something that, as soon as he noticed, I saw a glint of victory in his emerald eyes. To be honest, I was not, at all, responding to him. It was merely because my body was still trying to thaw out from the cold, and the castle’s still-too-cool climate didn’t help any. Yet again, pure luck that he thought that I was a scared little bunny, looking for shelter. Note sarcasm.
“My sweet.” He purred, taking a step closer to me. I remained concrete.
“What do you want?” I articulated every word perfectly, conveying my disdain for him without showing the absolute whirlwind of emotions coursing through me.
I felt very close to either punching him in the face or bursting into tears. I preferred the former rather than the latter, but I really didn’t want him to get any reaction out of me.
“Aw, come on, my jewel...don’t be so adversarial.” Julien was too close for comfort now, merely inches from me. He had slightly stooped down so we were eye level and his hands reached up to cup my face.
I swatted his hands away, the tiny slapping sound echoing in the corridor. His friends teasingly “ooh!”ed from behind him. And I distinctly heard one of them saying in a loud whisper to another, “Fiesty!”
“Ahh, someone’s still bitter.” Julien said, patronizingly wagging an index finger in front of my face, scolding me like a child. It took all of my personal strength not to break his hand.
“Yeah, well, rape will do that to a person.” I snapped, smacking away his hands again and trying to walk away.
It was a matter of seconds before I felt a tight grip on both of my shoulders and a hard stone wall at my back. Julien had me pinned and his friends were closing in on us, looking for a better view.
“I wasn’t very successful. Was I, Capella?” His tone had taken a completely different tenor and I wondered if this kid had a personality disorder. Now, he was demanding, harsh, dangerous.
“You had your go. Your fault it didn’t work. Now let go of me.” I barked, clawing at his arms to release me. His friends laughed behind him as his eyes hungrily searched me. He seemed not to have heard me.
“You were always such a pretty thing-”
“That’s why you have Marlow.” I cut in, quickly starting to internally panic. Everyone was at the Quidditch game, surely it would be easy for Julien and his friends to take advantage of me without anyone finding out.
Julien scoffed at me, continuing to allow his eyes to rake my body.
“She’s too easy. I need a challenge. That’s why I had you. And I still haven’t quite conquered you, you know.” His head cocked to the side, gauging my reaction. I tried as hard as I could not to.
“Nice to know I’m a conquest.” I spat, still looking for the weak link in his grasp. There was none.
However, something tells me that Merlin was being particularly generous that day. Because I, Capella Black, experienced luck. And it saved my freaking life.
I heard possibly the most glorious voice in the entire world.
And who knew that would be that of Horace Slughorn?
Apparently Slughorn had not totally seen the scene of Julien de Pontius trying to (again) violate me. He had turned the corner in the corridor and seen four of his favorite students...and me. Upon hearing the approaching footsteps, Julien had let go of me and backed away, rearranging the scene completely to read a nonchalant run-in of housemates.
“Why hello, Professor.” Julien greeted, a dazzling smile on his face. Julien’s three cronies grinned back at Slughorn, whose face read that he was absolutely basking in the attention. It was a well-known fact that Slughorn loved Julien.
Slughorn looked around at the boys, nodding to each of them before his gaze fell upon me. A look of mild surprise passed across his face and then a less-enthused smile saluted me individually. It was probably the nicest expression he had ever given me.
“And Miss Black, good day to you too!” I didn’t muster up any attempt of a smile. I knew Slughorn didn’t even expect it from me either.
As expected, he ignored my visage and continued on. He was halfway through a conversation with Julien about some incurable poison before he seemed to remember something important about me.
“Oh, Miss Black!” His sudden epiphany caught me off guard and I only had time to blink before he continued rambling, “I’ve got an important message for you. You’re to meet me in my office at 7pm tonight. Your parents want a word with you.”
So much for Merlin being generous.
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