Chapter 2 : Another Life
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Hey guys! Thank you for the amazing response(: Sorry this took a bit longer than expected. I got rejected the first time in validation so I had to go back and do a bit of editing :/
The song for this chapter is “Another Life” by Third Eye Blind, one of my favorite bands.
Hope you like this chapter! I’ll be introducing other characters, their personalities, ages, etc. Make sure to let me know what you think with a review!
And then, everything changed.
The first few weeks were just as I had expected – lonely. My friends, my family…they shunned me. And when I had mustered up enough courage to walk over to them, they brushed me off, some acting as if I weren’t even there. A few simply pretended that they didn’t notice me. Their betrayal was like a knife in the back, it struck true.
Nonetheless, some acted pleasant enough. Victoire, being a 7th year and the eldest of the Potter-Weasley clan, was mature enough to not make quite as big of a deal out of my sorting. The vast age difference prevented any true friendship from forming but Victoire’s responsive attitude was a slight comfort. However, her younger sister Dominique was another story. At 15, she was the perfect stereotype of a bitchy, uptight teenage girl. And she knew it. Furthermore, much to her liking, Dominique was a great contrast to her sister. While Victoire was sweet as cherry pie, Dom’s words cut like a knife. She was more feared than respected.
And, unlike Victoire, Dominique didn’t speak to me. I couldn’t figure out if she did it because she was truly repulsed by my sorting or just to spite her eldest sibling. Honestly, I didn’t really think she had much of an opinion. She didn’t have any known preference for who she exchanged saliva with so I didn’t think she cared much.
Nevertheless, I couldn’t find any other excuses for why the rest of my cousins avoided me. Louis and Molly, two third years stuck together as if by glue, avoided me like the plague, giving me death glares whenever I happened to glance their way. Their denial stung. I had no idea I could lose friends so quickly. It just seemed so unfair…I hadn’t done a thing.
Fred also mirrored their behavior, but his was more of a muted rejection as his close friendship with James prevented much dismissal. And why was that? Well…James didn’t seem to have a problem with my sorting. He waved every time he saw me, teasing me just as he always had – although his new jokes included many jabs at my newfound loyalties. His lighthearted attitude helped keep my head above water – as did the presence of Roxanne.
Her reaction was perhaps the most peculiar of them all. Although, at the time, I didn’t notice her sorting due to being preoccupied with a bout of self-pity, I learned soon afterwards that unlike the rest of the family, she was sorted into Ravenclaw. Although later I felt guilty about it, I was happy at the moment to know I wasn’t the only outcast of the family.
We became close as the months passed by, finding more in common than I had first believed possible. I learned not to judge a book by its cover as I slowly uncovered Roxanne’s true personality.
Her sugary disposition rivaled Victoire’s. She was so genuinely sweet that I was suspicious, almost doubting the reality of it for the first few months. And, she was intelligent (duh, Ravenclaw) but far more than I was, which left me insecure and jealous at times. On occasion, she reminded me of my mother, although I could never determine if that similarity was a good or bad one.
And she was there for me in the beginning when no one else was. Roxanne let me wallow in self-pity without a negative word falling from her lips. Her loyalty astounded me and I can honestly say that I don’t believe she has ever said a bad word about someone she truly cares about. Roxanne truly felt for me, and that compassion bonded me to her. Of course now I see how selfish I was, moaning about while she was most likely experiencing the same thing. I apologized later on but she merely nodded, never saying a word.
A diamond in the rough, that one was.
Still, my parent’s response ranked right up there with Roxanne’s. I didn’t get a howler from my dad as I had expected, but rather three letters that I oddly received on the same day. The first was a strongly worded composition written by my father expressing his outrage. The second was a letter from my mum, apologizing for my dad and saying that she’d always be proud of me. The third was practically a replica of what my mum sent me but this time, signed by my father. I couldn’t help but wonder if she wrote it and he simply signed it.
I was hurt, but still a little relieved that I hadn’t been disowned. Because honestly, that was something I was seriously worrying about for a while.
And then, there was Al.
What could I say? Everything changed.
It was as if he had constructed a wall between us. He didn’t know what to say to me anymore. When we caught each other’s eye in the hallways, he looked as if he didn’t know who I was anymore. His accusing stare burned through me, causing a wave of guilt to course through me. I felt like screaming…screaming and telling him that he was making everything so much more complicated than it needed to be. This mental boundary that he had constructed was pointless.
I was still Rose. I wasn’t any different than I had been before.
But I kept my cool, I kept my expression blank, never reflecting the chaos within. I wanted to be strong. I didn’t want him to know how truly hurt I was.
And then, after a while, I became just as bad as him. I didn’t know the words to say. I was tongue-tied, at a loss for words. I didn’t know how to express myself to him…pathetic, I know, considering that we were best friends.
So I shoved it all away, pretending I didn’t feel, pretending I was perfect…perfectly fine.
But I wasn’t.
However, no matter how awful the first couple of weeks were, life went on, just as it always does. My newfound friendships with Roxanne and my roommates Alice Avery and Viviana Zabini helped fill the empty space Al had left. The friendly response I had received within the Slytherin house was a sigh of relief. After a month or so, I began to question my previous assumptions. They really all weren’t that bad.
But still, I couldn’t push away the hurt that I felt at Al’s rejection. And his growing friendship with Scorpius didn’t help, only further twisting the knife in my back.
Not only had Scorpius taken my place, he had taken my best friend. The pain that caused was excruciating. I was green with envy, never having been that jealous in my entire life. Within three weeks, I vowed to myself that I would hate Malfoy for the rest of my life. Childish, yes, but for some odd reason, it helped.
And I didn’t make his life hell, I didn’t even say a thing, though I’m quite sure that my hostile glares communicated my loathing loud and clear.
He had taken everything from me and even if I didn’t have the courage to say anything, I sure as hell was going to make him feel bad about it.
5 years later
“Rose,” a completely serious Alice Avery began, “I think I’m in love.”
I paused midway through my ramblings and looked up inquisitively, a slight smile curving my lips.
Alice wasn’t serious, she rarely was. She obsessed about a different boy every week, more out of the amusement and attention she gained from it than an actual interest in the poor boy. It was a little game she enjoyed, manipulating her victim until she tired of the sport and dumped him.
Entertaining? Most definitely.
“With who?” I asked, playing along with her outburst as I returned to painting my toenails, a Muggle hobby Alice and I had recently taken up.
“Elliot Ramsey,” she sighed, falling back into her pillows, nail polish and brush in opposite hands. “Did you see him at that last Qudditch match? I was so distracted by how well he played that I almost forgot what I was doing. And those muscles…I mean, dear Merlin, do you know what I would do – ?”
I held a hand up, “Uh, please spare me Alice. I haven’t eaten anything today.”
The girl laughed, rolling her eyes as she returned to brushing her toenails with a bright shade of sunshine.
“You know, one day or another, some guy is going to figure out your game and dump you first,” I continued.
Alice rolled her eyes, “Not going to happen. I’ve never met a guy who thinks with his head when it comes to a girl. You’re too negative.”
I frowned, “Well, you’re too positive!”
“That’s me, Little Miss Sunshine!” Alice winked and blew me a kiss with her free hand.
I simply shook my head in response, putting the brush back into the bright red bottle of nail polish. I leaned over my legs and just as I was about to blow on my nails, the door burst open. Alice jumped in front of me, accidentally knocking over the little yellow bottle onto her bed.
“Aww bollocks!” Alice exclaimed, leaning back against the headboard of her bed, staring pathetically at the mark the bright yellow nail polish had left on her emerald duvet.
“Merlin, Alice,” a raspy voice began, “couldn’t you try putting your clothes away once in while?”
“Watch out Viv, you might turn into Roxanne if you’re not careful,” Alice laughed and Viviana stuck her tongue out at the brunette in response.
I twisted around, never moving my feet as I smiled brightly at the dark skinned girl who had just entered, “Hey Vivi.”
“Hey love,” she replied, smiling at me as she made her way through Alice’s mess to her bed.
“Ugh, Viv, I can’t believe you made me spill!”
“You’ll get over it,” Viviana shrugged, sitting down on the edge of her bed as she took off her tennis shoes.
Alice pouted, picking up the nail polish and placing it carefully on her bedside table.
“Let me guess,” I started, copying Alice’s actions, “you were out running?”
“God, why the hell do you do that to yourself?” I asked, disgusted, “It’s a Saturday morning.”
“Well, you have to work for this body, babe,” Viv replied dramatically, winking at me.
I laughed, rolling my eyes as I walked over to my own bed and laid down, smiling.
Truth be told, no matter how desolate I had been at the start, things really hadn’t turned out that bad. After the initial shock, people loosened up. Their discrimination and bias was still expressed in between the lines, but for the most part, things had almost gotten back to normal by 6th year.
I liked to think of it this way – if I had never been sorted into Slytherin, I wouldn’t have met Viviana or Alice. They were my roommates, and the three of us were as close as bread and butter.
Although Vivi and Alice butted heads on multiple occasions, they resolved their arguments as quickly as they started them. They were both confident and poised.
But, despite the similarities, the two were their own person. Alice, however, was definitely the most abrasive. Her witty, well-placed sarcasm almost challenged mine. Mind you, I said almost. And despite her gentle appearance, she was rough and to the point, never beating around the bush – her personality perfectly mirroring her performance on the Qudditch field. She jumped into things head first, fiercely positive about the outcome. Despite her super model legs and obsession with the opposite sex, she was a tomboy through and through.
She even hated puppies.
Well, not just puppies.
Alice hated animals in general.
She always declared that they “ate too much” and were “too messy,” upon which Viviana would ask innocently if Alice were an animal and subsequently get a pillow to the head.
Clever and beautiful, Viv was perhaps the most mischievous of us three. She knew she was gorgeous and she liked to use that against the male population of Hogwarts. She was like a siren, from the moment she parted her lips, she had them under her control. However, unlike Alice, she didn’t use her talents for quick flings, instead preferring longer, yet equally meaningless relationships. Vivi was a perfect Slytherin, ambitious and manipulative, so much so that it unnerved me from time to time.
In great contrast to Alice, she wasn’t straightforward and preferred to keep her true feelings, thoughts and emotions covered by an icy mask. She was intimidating at first, I have to admit, but I knew the true Viviana and that girl was nothing like the ice queen she made herself out to be.
And then…well then there was me. The negative, sarcastic control freak of the group. Oh, I’m also a perfectionist.
And I have red hair.
Personally, I found myself a little closer to Alice than Vivi, as I found her a bit more trustworthy and we had more in common.
Now, don’t judge, but we both had an odd sort of fascination with Muggle creations. Not to the extreme of granddad Weasley of course, but our dirty little secret (Slytherin, hello!) was notable. A day didn’t go by that Alice wasn’t on her electric guitar. I swear, sometimes, she spent so much time on it that I got a bit jealous, secretly nicknaming the thing Scorpius.
Then again, I was never happier than when she would play alternative Muggle music, so I couldn’t hate it too much.
Nevertheless, my friendship with both Vivi and Alice emulated what I had lost with Al.
The three of us bonded in first year, our loud personalities meshing surprisingly well together. We considered ourselves lucky; there was an uneven number of Slytherin first years and so only the three of us bunked together. Having a spare bed actually turned out to be quite useful sometimes. And anyways, I doubt we could have tolerated another person. We all annoyed each other enough as it was.
“Hey, do you guys want to go get lunch?” Vivi asked from the opposite side of the room, her stomach rumbling. “I’m starving.”
“Same!” Alice replied, sitting up quickly.
I snorted, “When aren’t you hungry, Alice?”
She feigned offense, “Are you calling me fat?”
“Oh please,” Vivi rolled her eyes, “you know you’re the skinniest one here. Don’t even try, miss-I-weigh-7-stones!”
Alice laughed, looking pleased with herself. The little attention whore…
“You don’t even deny it.” I sighed, “But anyways, it’s too early.”
“Ok, you win.”
The three of us, each clad in our matching winter-wear, made our way into the Great Hall. Over the years, it hadn’t changed one bit. I couldn’t say the same about myself, but it was nice that something had remained constant in my life.
We forced ourselves against the traffic, roughly pushing the younger students aside as they attempted to exit.
Merlin, I loved being an upperclassman.
Finally squeezing through the doors, we winded our way through people towards our regular spot at the Slytherin house table. As usual, I ignored the neighboring Gryffindor table, afraid of glancing over and seeing Al…or Scorpius.
However, just as I was about to make my way over to my familiar home base, a foot stopped me. I looked down, dazed for a moment, wondering how it had gotten there before a laugh interrupted my tired thought process. I looked up to none other than James Potter. Leaning back against the table, arms splayed out casually and arrogantly, he conveyed a challenge to the whole world.
“You really need to watch where you’re going, Rosie,” James began, smiling cheerfully as he drew me away from my friends. I glanced at them apologetically before sitting down.
“Hardy har har, you sod, you know I’m not a morning person,” I shook my head, defeated. “What do you want?”
James feigned insult, “Why do you always assume I want something? Perhaps I just want to catch up with my sweetest cousin!”
I rolled my eyes, smiling slightly, “Sweetest cousin? Really? If you’re going to lie to me, at least come up with something half-convincing.”
James opened his mouth to reply but I put my hand up, continuing.
“But if you want small talk, I’ll give it to you,” I said, patting him on the leg. “First off, I’m fine, thank you, although a bit tired. The weather is far too cold, even for winter in Scotland. And, hmmm, let’s see…yes, I am terribly disappointed in the performance of the Chudley Cannons this season. Will that do?”
James laughed, his eyes alight with amusement and admiration, “I think you might be my favorite cousin, Rose.”
“I know,” he corrected himself quickly.
I laughed, letting the pleasant moment sit between us for a few seconds before continuing, “But, anyways, how’s Al?”
James cast me an odd look, “You know the easiest way to figure that out is to ask him yourself.”
“Like that’d go over well,” I gave him a dark look, this was a sore spot for me.
Truthfully, the only thing that never exactly worked itself out was my friendship with Al. Even after 5 years, it never healed, only worsening with time. We spoke less and less each month, getting to the point where we barely spoke more than a word a day. And it still hurt even after so long…because he didn’t seem to care, replacing me with Scorpius as easily as he rejected me.
“If you’d just try maybe –”
“Not gonna happen, James,” I cut him off sharply.
He sighed, “I still don’t get it.”
“Shit happens. People grow apart,” I shrugged, my direct tone signaling a change of topic.
James nodded and after a moment of consideration, he began, “Well, if you must know, he’s rather heartbroken. They say the first heartbreak is always the worst. Ugh, if Alyssa Macmillan wasn’t a girl, I’d beat the living daylights out of her.”
I gave him an odd look, “If Alyssa Macmillan wasn’t a girl, I’m not sure Al would’ve dated her…him?”
James laughed before continuing, “But other than that, he’s fine. Same as he always is.”
“Thanks bud,” I nodded, “so what was is it that you wanted?”
James’ posture suddenly changed, his eyes taking on a puppy-like demeanor.
“Well, I was wondering,” he began, an air of mischief coloring his tone, “if might you have plans for next Friday night?”
I laughed, “You don’t have to sweeten me up. Just tell me what you want.”
“Well I want to know what you’re doing!” He pouted, folding his arms.
“Oh,” I began, narrowing my eyebrows as I tried to remember my schedule, “I think I’m free. Why?”
“And your,” he paused, glancing nonchalantly towards the Slytherin table, “friends?”
I smiled, suddenly understanding what this was all about, “Yes. I’m sure they’re available.”
“Well,” he continued, grinning, “Fred is hosting a party after-hours in the Gryffindor common room and I was wondering if you and your…ah…friends wanted to come.”
“You know if you want to ask out Viviana you should just do it.”
The two were friends themselves, having developed a companionship soon after mine with her. Whenever I asked either about it, they’d just laughed and mention something about bonding over mandrakes...I never investigated further.
However, at my response, James pretended to gag, making such a convincing retching sound that I was sure the first year beside him thought he was about to puke. I whacked him warningly. He sat up straighter, giving me a playful wink that caused me to roll my eyes.
“Don’t even lie, you’re insanely obvious about it.”
James sighed after a moment, deflating a bit, “Really?”
I nodded, “Yeah. Well at least to me.”
“Well, don’t you worry, because I’ll help you out,” I told him. “Family is family.”
James’ face lit up but before he could reply, I continued.
“But if you break her heart, I’ll beat the shit out of you and you won’t be able to do a thing about it.”
“Well, I don’t know about that, Rosie…”
“Don’t test me.”
“Oh, I won’t.”
I smiled slightly. James Sirius Potter was an odd individual. He liked people to believe he was a confident, impenetrable, emotionless sex god but he really wasn’t. Not that many people actually believed that…or at least the ones who had met him…well, that’s just my opinion. I had a lot of respect for him, considering he had always been there for me (unlike his prick of a brother) but he really was…unique.
I sighed, “You know, sometimes I wonder how you even have friends.”
Not even inquiring on my out-of-the-blue question, he replied automatically, “Maybe because I’m ridiculously handsome?”
I rolled my eyes, standing as I wondered just how many times he had been the cause of that reaction today.
“Aww no, Rosie, don’t leave me alone,” James pouted, folding his arms.
“How about you go sit with all of your friends?” I asked, smirking as I walked away, “Oh wait…”
“I hate you, Rose.”
“You love me!” I shouted back at him, shaking my head as I sat down by my friends.
“What was that about?” Viviana asked, craning her neck to catch a glimpse of the departing James Potter.
“Eh,” I began, grabbing a few chips, “nothing really, he just –”
“I can’t believe it!” A voice exclaimed from behind me, “I simply can’t believe it.”
I turned around to face the pixie-like Roxanne Weasley, her cheeks burning as she sat down beside me, but not before she scanned the seat to assure its cleanliness.
She was mildly O.C.D, not a big deal but, on occasion, I found her insane hygiene irritating. She never even visited our dormitory due to its chaotic, disorganized state. Alice had a bit of a soft spot for Roxanne and found it adorable.
I found it annoying.
“What happened?” Vivi asked, leaning in, eager to hear the early morning gossip that she fed off.
“Tristan Longbottom!” Roxanne cried, “That’s what happened!”
“What did he do?” I asked, slightly alarmed.
“He asked me to go with him to Hogsmeade, that’s what he did!”
Alice choked on her water as Viviana and I burst out into laughter.
“You have got to be kidding me,” Alice snorted after regaining composure.
“I wish I was,” Roxanne replied in dismay, “I was mortified.”
“I mean he’s just so…” The poor girl struggled to find kind words, “filthy…have you seen the way he eats?”
“Yeah! He’s just like Alice!” Vivi contributed brightly just before being wacked on the head by her friend.
“You don’t seem to have a problem with the way his father eats,” I commented casually, pretending not to notice as Roxanne’s blush deepened.
Recognizing the tension and not wanting to confront one of Alice’s nosy questions, I switched back to the earlier topic, “But what I’m wondering is where the hell he found the balls to do that.”
Vivi sniggered in response, but Roxanne kept quiet, unsure of what to say. She was too empathetic to say a bad word about Tristan but she was too spineless to defend him against any one of us.
“It’s not funny, Rose,” She frowned. I could tell it was a little hard for her to disagree.
“Ehh, it’s a little funny,” Vivi replied, grinning as Alice and I struggled to contain our amusement.
Roxanne groaned and put her head back in her hands.
“Well, what did you say?” Alice inquired.
“No! Of course!” Roxanne replied quickly, “But I was very nice about.”
“What, did you tell him? You were too busy to focus on a relationship or some bullshit like that? I use that one all the time,” Alice continued, glancing at me, humor alight in her eyes.
“No, I told him I only thought of him as a friend.”
“Ouch, that’s direct.” I said, “He’s practically a relative, Roxanne, I hope you know you’ll be seeing a lot of him at family gatherings.”
“Well that’s it to! I just...no,” Roxanne shivered.
Suddenly wanting a subject change, I spoke up.
“Hey, do you guys want to go to a party?”
My friends looked at me inquisitively, curious.
“Well, that depends…” Vivi began.
“Sorry, that was random,” I apologized before continuing, “but that was what I was talking about with James earlier. Fred is hosting a party for god knows why and James invited us all.”
I looked pointedly at Viviana, searching for a reaction but nothing came, her expression was completely blank.
“When is it?” Alice asked the logical question.
“Oh, um,” I struggled to remember, “next Friday, I believe.”
“Then I can’t,” Roxanne shrugged, “I have a study session with Gatlin Corner.”
“A study session?” Vivi raised her eyebrows suggestively, causing Roxanne to blush.
“Yes,” she replied tersely, “a study session.”
Vivi and Alice exchanged a knowing look.
“Well, I can’t go either,” Alice replied, smiling mischievously, “I have my own…ah…study session with Elliot.”
Viviana burst out into laughter and even I couldn’t help a small smile. Roxanne, however, looked slightly embarrassed.
Now don’t judge too quickly, it wasn’t as if Alice was opposed to love, she just never found anyone who filled out the mental component of her perfect-man checklist.
Needless to say, she found many that met her physical standard…
“Oh get over it, Roxanne,” Vivi snickered, “and I think I can go.”
I stared at her for an instant, trying to read her motives, but after a moment of unsuccessful mind-reading, I spoke, “Then I guess I’ll go too.”
James Potter owed me big time.
Ahh man, I loved writing this chapter, especially the interaction with James. I kind of love him. We’ll be seeing a lot of him. So did you like? Let me know with a review? It really speeds up the writing process. I swear(: I’d love to know your thoughts on Alice, Roxanne and Vivi. Who’s your favorite?
I know Alice may seem like a total bitch but give her some time to develop and I swear you’ll love her as much as I do(; And I didn’t talk much about Vivi but I’ll expand on her character later!
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