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Chapter 24 : She is a snotty little madam
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Problem 32: I have a sobbing Caspar in my arms.
And I have no idea what’s wrong. The suspense is killing me.
In a positive, upbeat world, Caspar would be recovering about now. And we wouldn’t be late to Transfiguration.
But... she’s still crying. I think she may also be speaking.
“...mphg... jesunhdins... awwarf...”
Well, it’s definitely something. I just don’t know what it is.
Livi sighs and sits down heavily. A beetle starts crawling over her foot. I watch it as Caspar shudders and chokes in my arms, and Livi makes ‘what the hell?’ gestures behind her back.
After a while – we are definitely late – she composes herself and I steer her to a handy stump, sitting down and bringing her with me. Livi shuffles forwards and sits in front of us.
And with one word, Livi picks through all of Caspar’s defences. I’m sure she’s set them up – she’s been sobbing for a good ten minutes.
“Spill!” Livi commands. Caspar moans, sways, and puts her head in her hands.
“I cheated on Harry,” she mutters, loud enough for us to hear. And as if that’s not big enough news, she adds, “With Evie.”
Okay, that’s a Muggle belief, but I can’t bring poor innocent Merlin into this. This God guy... I don’t know much about him. I’m sure mum would be more than happy to teach me.
Livi’s jaw had dropped, and my eyes had grown massively. We probably look like a bad cartoon.
“You... what?” I ask stupidly.
“I kissed Evie!” Caspar all but shrieks, “And then I had sex with her!”
Nope, still not getting this.
“Does he know?” Livi asks.
“Who?” Caspar asks blankly, “Harry? Fuck, why would I tell him? ‘Oh, hi Harry! Did you know I cheated on you with a girl whom I now know better than you inside and out? No? Oh, well, now you do!’”
“There’s no need for sarcasm,” Livi reprimands as Caspar glowers, “But you need to—“
“Need to! I’m going to be miserable, thanks, and avoid both of them—“Caspar interrupts, looking angry and worried.
“No! You’re going to go and sit them both down and discuss it like adul—“ I try to rationalise, but I’m cut off.
“I cheated on him; this isn’t a rational conversation I can have over dinner!” Caspar stands up and stomps her foot. Really? How old is she? “I am almost an adult! November the seventeenth, I will be an adult and I am fucking terrified of that day! I don’t want to grow up!” Her legs fold and she sits back down heavily, swiping at her eyes.
I take a deep breath. “Okay. Before we argue this any further, we need to know four things. What did you do, where did it happen, when the hell, and why?”
Caspar swipes on final time, and sighs. “What – we were talking. And then we were kissing. And then I had no clothes on and—“ she closes her eyes and rubs her temples for a moment, and then sits back up and continues, “—Where – this is going to sound really, really terrible of me, but it happened in our dorm. When – four days ago, just after you went into the hospital wing. Why? WHY? How the fuck am I supposed to know? But now I lie in bed after the lights are out and I know she’s in the same room, and it feels like... like she’s everywhere.”
There’s a pause. “Our... dorm?” Livi says slowly, “Our dorm? As in, the one we sleep in every night?”
Caspar shoots a glare at her. “Yes, that one! Not only the one you sleep in, but the one both Evie and I sleep in, too! It’s like... it’s like if Rose slept in the same room as Scorpius. She’d want to go climb into his bed, right?” I nod. Well, duh. “Well, that’s what it feels like. I can’t sleep because the urge is so strong.” She laughs bitterly. “Lust is driving me mad. You must think I’m a freak.”
“I dunno,” I reply, “I’ve always thought you’re a bit weird, that’s why I like you – my cousin’s gay, Caspar, I have no problem with you being in love with Evie.”
“I am not in love!” Caspar growls, “It’s a stupid infatuation, and I will be over it before you can say ‘lesbian’!”
Livi and I glance at each other.
“Yeah...” Livi says slowly, “It’s a stupid infatuation, but you can’t sleep because of it.”
Caspar sends her one last glare before standing up and stalking off through the trees in the direction of the school.
We both follow her. I’m slowly building myself up for one of my infamous interventions – Caspar does not want that to happen, I’m sure. To date, my interventions have all been spectacular; have always resulted in me getting at least two detentions and the victims being permanently shell shocked – but it never fails. Just ask Albus what happened when he found out his girlfriend was cheating on him and mistakenly told me. And quote: “Rose, if I ever have a problem again, I’m going to tell you last.”
He over-reacted. All I did was post a giant billboard of the girl in question in the Great Hall with the word ‘slut’ written in four-foot high letters, and it may have caused a bit of trouble. But she’s been faithful ever since – although admittedly not to Al, but to the boy she was cheating on him with.
Sucks for him.
“Caspar,” I call, “Have you spoken to her since?”
Caspar waits for us to catch up to her and then walks with us at a more sedate pace.
“No,” she finally replies, “I’ve been avoiding her.”
“Don’t take this the wrong way,” Livi says slowly, “But I think you should. Talk to Harry, too. If you keep avoiding them you’re just going to get more and more stressed, and then you’ll be a nervous wreck for the rest of your life.”
“Maybe not that long,” I correct, “But if you want to climb into bed with Evie...” I trail off suggestively, grinning and dodging the blow Caspar sends my way.
“I can’t,” she mumbles, “I can’t just talk like everything’s normal.”
“Then don’t,” Livi says, “Talk like you want to jump into bed with Evie.” I laugh as she also has to dodge a blow.
“Shut it,” Caspar growls, but there’s a smile on her face. Victory! She smiles!
There’s a pause in the conversation. I don’t want to get back into the Harry-Evie-Caspar discussion until I’ve figured out what I think should be done, and I’m comfortable being in love with Scorpius, so I target the person who has been walking with us... Olivia.
“How’s Luke?” I ask airily, expecting an avalanche of gushing. Instead, Livi pouts.
“He’s boring. He’s Quidditch obsessed. He complains a lot. And he calls me ‘Libby’,” she whines, “He stays up all night and then moans about how tired he is. He copied my homework and I got called in for plagiarism—“
“Okay, so everything’s amazing, then,” Caspar says dryly, “I’m glad that at least Rose is having fun with mouse boy.”
“Hey! His name is—“
“-- he keeps going on about the Quidditch cup and how it would be amazing to win it. He says he hated playing before being a captain because he ‘knew he could do better’. He’s obnoxious, and bratty, and I feel like an idiot even standing next to him unless he shuts his mouth,” Livi continues bitterly, “But I can’t get rid of him because he’s threatening to kick me off the team if I try.”
We’re on the outer edges of the forest now, and I can see Hagrid waiting worriedly with Scorpius, who’s throwing pieces of raw meat for Bella with a look of mild disgust on his face.
“He waited for you,” Livi says, and she looks disappointed. “Luke never waits for me.”
“Harry waits for me,” Caspar comments, “But I keep dodging him.”
They share a moment of misery. I, however, am busy being happy.
He waited for me!
He spots us plodding towards us and grins at me.
Well, there go my knees...
Bella sees his distraction and wanders off, presumably to eat something slimy and gross. Like raw liver. Or slugs.
“Shut up, Rose,” Livi mutters, “Just because you got the good one...”
I am pretty sure I didn’t say anything. I glance at Caspar, and she is giving me a ‘our-friend-is-crazy-pretend-not-to-notice’ look. I oblige happily.
“..your dadada, consisted of the same... dadadadaaaa!” I scramble through pages upon pages of sheets of lyrics, chords and lists of songs, desperately trying to find the lyrics to whatever song it is I’m supposed to be singing. Damn this Muggle ball!
This is all Lucinda’s fault.
Speaking of Lu – she’s come down with whatever I had. I’m sure it’s karma.
The band has stopped playing now, and are sniggering at my muffled swearing.
Fergus puts down his guitar and comes over to help, taking half the pile and beginning to leaf through them. Daniel keeps drumming – geez, he never stops! It’s like he’s got a drumming twitch. I notice Eldora is neither playing her stupid keyboard, or helping us. Snooty Ravenclaw cow.
And what kind of name is Eldora, anyway? A rubbish one! It’s a terrible name!
...I’m kind of in a bad mood.
We were late to Transfiguration, despite my pleas to skip it and say we felt ill, and Professor Chang gave us a bloody detention. All through Transfiguration, Livi grumbled under her breath about Luke. Caspar ran out of the room when the bell went to avoid both Evie and Harry, leaving me with Mrs. Grumble, whom I had to put up with throughout lunch. She’s so tiring.
Fortunately, Luke didn’t come visit her – although that may have been one of the reasons she was grumbling – so I didn’t have to put up with an argument, or worse.
Anyway. Since I had most of the evening – bar detention time – I thought I’d schedule an impromptu rehearsal.
Hence, I found out these little known – to me – facts:
1. Eldora Hicks is a snotty little madam.
2. With a stupid name.
3. Daniel Mayfield has some kind of drumming disability and therefore cannot stop at any time.
4. Fergus is the only one I actually like in the band.
Bless Fergus for being so nice. I pull out the correct music with a flourish. I have got to organise this stuff at some point.
Placing it on my music stand, I pick up my guitar and sigh.
“From the top!” I order grumpily. I’m catching Livi’s grump.
“Nah, come on Rose, my fingers hurt,” Fergus says, “You’re supposed to be in your detention in five minutes, anyway.”
Eldora flounces out of the room, her skirt bouncing on her thighs. Fergus follows her with his eyes. Oh good Merlin. Her?
“Fergus, you’re drooling,” Daniel sniggers, standing up from his drum kit and blessedly leaving the room quiet. Fergus scowls in reply.
“I’m not,” he mutters. I raise an eyebrow.
“Do you like her Fergus?” I ask innocently. His ears turn an interesting shade of pink.
“What, Eldora?” he says, trying to be nonchalant. He fails miserably; instead sounding like most of the air is missing from his lungs. “Yeah, she’s okay.”
I burst out laughing, and he blushes. “Okay?”
Let’s get something straight: I don’t like Eldora. But I like Fergus, and therefore I like Eldora for his sake. It’s what friends do.
But the moment she hurts him in the slightest, I’m going to punch her in her snooty face.
I grab my mountain of lyrics and chords and start the run to get to my detention in time.
Normally, I wouldn’t care, but I might as well be on time and not have to do another detention for missing this one.
I skid into Professor Chang’s classroom with a minute to spare, plopping into a seat.
She looks up at me and smiles ruefully.
“Once upon a time,” she says whimsically, “You would have rather died than have been given detention.”
Um... Not my fault I’m a nerd, look who I have for a mother.
I attempt to smile back, but I’m saved from further ‘conversation’ by Caspar crashing into the room, dragging behind her a reluctant Olivia. Caspar appears to be wiping her eyes.
I resist the urge to demand to know why she’s crying, sitting on my hands instead.
“Sorry we’re late professor,” Caspar gasps, “We encountered some... trouble.”
She glances at me worriedly. Why is she giving me that look? I’m not telepathic, I don’t know what happened!
Maybe she’s worried because I’m here on time. I mean, that’s just unnatural. Both Livi and Caspar plop into seats next to me, so I’m sandwiched between them, and we’re ready to face an hour of boredom.
Professor Chang rises from her seat and levitate three large boxes crammed full of files and random scraps of parchment onto our desks. Oh, good.
“Here are the lesson plans for every second year class this year,” she announces, “Sort them by category.”
We start sorting slowly, and Chang goes back to her marking.
Potions. Charms. Potions. Potions. History.
Pistory. Harms. Cotions.
Hooray! A first year messenger.
“Uh, Professor Chang?” he asks, trying to sound cool in front of us big kids – I know, I used to do it too – and failing. “I think Martin’s concussed.”
I try not to snigger, pressing my lips into a weird face. Oh, first years.
Chang bustles out of the room, leaving us with the order “Don’t break anything!”
Caspar turns to me with a determined look on her face.
“Two things. James is on the warpath. And I kissed Evie again.”
Oh good God.
“She missed out the best bit!” Livi says gleefully.
“Livi, please...” Caspar moans, putting her head in her hands.
“No, go on,” I urge. Well, I am curious.
“They combined beautifully and James caught Caspar kissing Evie!” she laughs, “And he’s threatening to tell Harry... which isn’t so good.”
Well. Leave a review because I eat them and my cupboard is bare please! I hope you enjoyed it
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