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The Human Factor by SexyDoorFrames
Chapter 10 : The One Where Everyone Is Sort Of Civilized
 
Rating: MatureChapter Reviews: 26


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 Disclaimer: I don’t own Harry Potter.

Authors Note: Hi! How are you all? Thanks for all your support, it means a lot me and inspires me to write. I’m having a bit of trouble writing the next chapter but hopefully it shouldn’t last too long. The next chapter is a fun one. 

Please remember to keep your language 12+ in reviews, otherwise they have to get deleted. Comments and opinions are always welcomed and make the world go round.

  Thanks so much to StEpH_M for being my beta.





Chapter Ten –
The One Where Everyone Is Sort Of Civilized




Amazing Chapter Image By hayley jade@TDA


“I personally like the flaws.” - Albus Potter




It was pouring down with rain. It wasn’t a light drizzle because I might have been able to deal with that. It was huge droplets that hit me like bullets. My clothes were soaked and my hair was dripping like a fountain. I looked like the prefect little Pureblood. In all this, I was expected to find the bloody snitch. I had lost it about an hour ago. This was our Quidditch training; Albus Potter has gone insane. The worst thing was that a lot of people found this acceptable. Cassie was having the time of her life doing different kinds of loops. Just looking at her was making me feel sick. I glanced around. That snitch had disappeared and I had no idea where to start looking for it. Oh well. I shivered, it was too bloody cold. Albus was trying to kill me, I was sure of it. I know he said it wouldn’t be easy but I didn’t expect him to turn into Satan. I was cold. I was going to catch my death.

“Oi Nott!” He yelled at me from above. “Get on your bloody broom and try to find the snitch.” He held the beaters bat in his hand as he hovered just above me.

I had gotten off my broom a while ago feeling defeated. I was just strolling around the pitch humming to myself as I wished to be struck down with lightening or something. “I’m trying!” I yelled. I was trying not to get dirty and I was trying not to take my broom to Albus’ head. I was winning at both.

“To find it you have to be on your broom idiot.” He snapped, clearly quite pissed off. He was getting tired but he still managed the bludger with all his strength. He has a lot of rage I suppose. I should have gone for that position, it looks quite fun. I mean you get to hit things and aim them at people you don’t like.

“What if it was near the ground?” I questioned, ignoring his idiotic remark.

“Just get on your broom before I kill you. I am this close to kicking you off the team.” He threatened. He was grumpy today. I was going to point that out but I found myself wanting the easy life because this rain truly was annoying me, so I mounted my broom and kicked off. I always felt sick for the first few moments before I got used to being in mid air. I was never going to find it relaxing; I was always too worried about slipping off the broom and falling to my death. I was petrified of actually playing a game. I was sure I would take a hit to the head. I flew around as I pondered whether this was worth it. This was a contact sport and I felt like I should have picked Gobstones or something. Then I looked at Albus, who was soaked and angry and I decided it was. His face dropping would make it all worth it. I would be the winner and he would be the loser. I flew around slowly before finally spotting the snitch. I whizzed towards it, feeling like I was going to die at any moment and caught it with my numb fingers.

Albus stared at me. “Not too bad Nott.” I gripped the snitch hard in my hand. “You could do better though; much better.” He shook his head.

“As always.” I muttered under my breath, I had heard those words far too often in my life for it to be healthy. Apparently, I could always do better if I only tried. The phrase was starting to tire on me.

“I think that’s it for tonight’s practice.” Albus called and everyone instantly, me included, flew down to the wet pitch. My shoes instantly sunk into the soft mud. This was disgusting. How do people deal with this? We were all tired and moody. Except Cassie, but she’s had seven cups of coffee today so she has enough energy to last her till the end of November.  “We’ve had a good practice. We need to keep it up if we want to take the cup again.” Albus had won last year; Damien was in a mood about it for weeks. He ripped open a pillow and rivalled me in the glaring stakes. I had to kick Scorpius to show I was the evil child. Scorpius cried that day because I was ‘mean’.

Cassie walked over to me. “That was great wasn’t it?” I glared at her as she wiped her eyes. Her mascara had dripped, giving her the most amazing panda eyes. “Nothing makes you feel so alive.” I can think of some better ways to make me feel alive; a hot chocolate and a water bottle. Yes, sometimes I acted like my Grandma Greengrass but my Grandma Greengrass is cool because she talks to a clock in the shape of a pig. I didn’t know it was a clock until Cassie pointed it out after I took a photo of it. I have yet to tell her because she’ll accuse me of going Muggle and force me to drink tea while I sit with that damn parrot who refers to me as a ‘twat’ as she recites my heritage, whips out the photo albums and tells me to trust no one, not even myself. It’s so annoying. One day I’m hoping she’ll blast me from the lineage and I’ll be done with it all, but until then, I have arguments with the parrot, I get a stomach ache from all the tea and I wonder where I got my looks from because some of my ancestors look like monkeys. 

Cassie waved her hands in front of my face. “Hello? Earth to Pippa?”  She poked me in the arm. I stared at her, giving her my attention, at least for a little while. “How did you find it?”

“I am cold, moody and I fear I may die.” I sniffed as I wiped my nose on my sleeve. “It is normally like that?”

Cassie thought about it for the moment. “It normally isn’t raining.” She shrugged. “Sometimes it’s sunny. Wear another jumper next time.” She patted her jumper that had snowflakes all over it. “It’s what I do.”

“I don’t own a jumper.” I thought about it for a moment. “I’ll steal one of Scorpius’. He has tonnes. I’m not wearing that one with the puppy on it. That just looks stupid.” All of his animal ones look stupid. I would have stolen Damien’s jumper but we still weren’t talking. He refused to look at me and treated me like I was invisible. I was right in this situation and he would be damned before I crawled back to him and begged forgiveness. He’s waiting for me to crack. He’s going to be waiting a bloody long time. “He has one with a zombie on that is eating cookies. I like that one.” I was daydreaming about jumpers but at least it was keeping my mind off my irritation towards my brother. I hadn’t been able to get a good night sleep since I fell asleep with Scorpius stroking my hair in the hospital wing. That was terrible. I had tried to forget Scorpius’ sweet gesture but it was proving difficult because the sweet gesture gnawed at me. He seemed to know what I needed when I didn’t.

Cassie yawned. “I’m so tired.” She told the wall the password and we entered the common room.  “I’m going to bed.” She said as she began walking towards the dormitory. I was going to follow her but I gave one last look towards the common room and it was buzzing with students, I had no interest in any of them but one had interest in me, Scorpius. I sighed, knowing I couldn’t head straight to bed even though I knew I wouldn’t go to sleep straight away anyway. Scorpius came running over to me and frowned.

“You’re soaking.” He looked me over. “You look like a drowned rat.” He took off his cloak and swung it over my shoulders. He was wearing his puppy jumper and I almost smiled at it as I wrapped his cloak around my shoulders. “There, you look a tiny bit better, though I can do nothing about your hair unless you let me use magic.” He chewed on a liquorish lace.

“I’m not letting you use any spells on me.” I sniffed. I hated colds. “I don’t trust you.”

Scorpius raised his eyebrow. “I looked at your exams results; I got higher marks than you in everything.” He was proud of that. I should have been embarrassed but I didn’t care; my marks will never be the best. Anyway, I swear Scorpius cheats. The boy is as dumb as a rock. How the hell can he get decent marks?

“Five year old children would get higher marks than me.” I smirked and Scorpius laughed. The laugh that hadn’t changed since we were children, it was still as innocent and charming as ever. “So we shouldn’t really argue about that should we?” I was being kind to him, I could hardly believe myself.

“I suppose. It’s a strange world when I’m classed as being smarter than you isn’t it?” He asked, blinking and I shuddered. “Want one?” He offered me a liquorish lace and I shook my head. Liquorish is disgusting.  

“You may flourish here but you’d never survive in the real world.” I stuck my tongue at him.

“I’d find an old lady to take me in. I’m cute and she’d feed me pies.” Scorpius shrugged. “I got it all figured out.” This is a boy that didn’t learn how to tie his shoelace until his were twelve. He has nothing worth knowing figured out but then again, neither did I most of the time but still, I had more figured out than Scorpius. “How was your practice?” He pulled me onto a sofa. I sat at the opposite edge to him but I found myself relaxing. That’s the thing with Scorpius, even in a room full of people, I always felt safe with him, it was like nothing could touch me. Even if we ended up in a fight, it’d be me protecting him. He’d scream and faint.

“It was a nightmare.” I complained. “First it was freezing, then it started to pour down and it went on for hours! I thought it was never going to end.” I brush my fingers through my still wet hair. It was going to frizz soon. “Albus is a nightmare. He is serious about this quidditch crap isn’t he?”

Scorpius laughed. “I told you, quidditch is one of the things he cares about. He wouldn’t mind if you ended up killing yourself as long as you capture the snitch first.”  He stared at my broom which I had only just got through yesterday. Dad was proud of me for doing something and Mom said she hoped I was at least ladylike about it. Damien didn’t say a thing. I feared he would never talk to me again. Sometimes it didn’t hurt but most of the time it did. “Your parents actually got you one of the best brooms. I’m surprised your mom is letting her precious little girl partake.”  My mother refused to let me play in a sand pit when I was little because I would have got my dress dirty. She was a little weird.

“I don’t think she had any choice. I had already gotten onto the team.”

Scorpius snorted. “You got it through default.” 

“It still counts.”

“I suppose.” Scorpius finally agreed.  “Has Damien spoken to you?”

“Nope, he’s ignored me for the past week.”  I tugged the cloak closer to me. It smelled like Scorpius. It was comforting. “How about you?”

“He told me I was a traitor. He asked why I sided with you.” Scorpius shrugged. “Why everyone is siding with you.” I didn’t know what everyone thought about the argument and frankly I didn’t really care but it was nice to know that people thought I was right. I have a habit of being an utter bitch sometimes and I never can see the line until I’ve crossed it but I felt like I was right this time but the more I thought about it, the more my head gets fuzzy. “I know Damien has issues but this is ridiculous.”

“I can see why last summer was hard though.” I reasoned. “My parents got worried about me.” Sometimes my dad would stroke my hair until I fell asleep when I found it too hard and my mother always made sure I had food and drinks; I didn’t even have to leave my room. “I mean, I guess Damien just needs attention. He’s always had it so it must be a struggle to lose it, even momentarily.” I pulled my knees against my chest, suddenly feeling very small.  “I didn’t mean for him to get hurt or pushed out…I just…” I couldn’t find the words but Scorpius nodded understanding.

“Yeah, but he should stop being a twat and realize that the world doesn’t revolve around him.” Scorpius sighed. “I love him and all, but the boy’s middle name should be selfish. I don’t know how James puts up with him.”

“I don’t know how you put up with Albus.”  I joked.

Scorpius frowned at me. “Albus has been through a lot; don’t judge him too quickly.” He said it gently but I found myself glaring at him as I felt offended.

In the end, I shrugged as I didn’t trust what would come out of my mouth. I had started to gather more negative feelings against the boy as the days were going by. Somehow I had gained a fully fledge enemy and therefore, I couldn’t imagine that the boy had any good points about him.

Just call me prejudice.

“We should be going to sleep now.” Scorpius told me. “It’s getting late and we have a long day of classes tomorrow.”

“I don’t feel sleepy.” I protested even though my cold bones ached and my eyes were growing heavy.

Scorpius raised his eyebrow. “Really?”

Instead of answering, I yawned.

Damn you body.

“Fine, I give in.” I took Scorpius cloak off and placed in his hands. I then headed towards the dorms but before I disappeared and I turned to him. “Good night.”  I never waited for an answer as I strolled up the stairs, suddenly feeling very cold. I entered the dormitory to find that everyone was asleep. I glanced as Cassie, whose hair was becoming larger by the second. She’d have fun trying to control it in the morning. I changed into my pyjamas, brushed my teeth, washed my face and crawled into bed. I tossed and turned in bed for a little while, feeling restless at the state of my life but eventually I fell asleep.

I woke up in a state. The sleep I had just got was anything less than refreshing. I had dreamt that I fell off a cliff and I watched my funeral from hell. Damien was laughing and took up residence in my room because it was slightly bigger. The utter twat. I pulled back the drapes and looked out the window. It was pitch black still. I sighed as I climbed out of my bed and grabbed my cleaned supplies. I walked down into the common room to find it empty.

It was perfect.

I took out all my supplies and began cleaning the cupboards that were in the common room. I felt slightly better with each scrub, like I was also cleaning away all marks and stains from my life story.

“Nice pyjamas.”

I jumped in the air since I wasn’t expecting anybody. “Holy cow.” I yelled as I turned to face the person who had almost given me a heart attack. Albus Potter stood there in crumpled clothes, tired eyes and smirking lips. “It always has to be you don’t it?” He just shrugged. I looked down at my pyjamas; they were black with a lot of yellow smiley faces on them. Cassie bought them for me when I was really grumpy one day.  “What do you want?”

“I obviously couldn’t sleep.” He shrugged as I carried on with my cleaning. “Why do you clean everything? It’s weird.”

“Everything looks better when it’s clean.” I didn’t even look up. I didn’t want to talk about it because the memory of when the obsession first started would surface and I tried not to think about that too much. “It’s better when it’s perfect.”

“I personally like the flaws.” He ran his finger over my clean surface. “It makes it different from all the generic shit that is around these days. You can’t have the same exact flaw twice.”

“Flaws do not make anything. Flaws only hinder.” I argued as I scrubbed the place he had touched.

“Perfection doesn’t exist, you know.”

“It must do somewhere. If it doesn’t, well, that’s just depressing.”

“That whole statement is depressing.” He countered and I found myself frowning.

“I don’t like being part of a messed up generation. I mean, people went through so much with the war, yet somehow they managed to stay sane.” I stopped scrubbing for a moment as I pondered my thoughts. “We’ve had an easier ride yet we seem more messed up. How does that work?”  I don’t know why I was letting him understand a little about the way my mind worked.

“That’s life.” Albus laughed. “Just because things are different doesn’t make it any less hard. We have to put up with a lot of crap that they didn’t.”

“Like what?” I couldn’t believe we were having somewhat of a civilized conversation. We were still disagreeing but we weren’t yelling at each other. I didn’t like it. He was going to be impossible to figure out.

“Take Scorpius for example, he still gets a lot of crap from people judging him due to his fathers Death Eater past. Someone actually called him scum the other day.” He laughed bitterly and I couldn’t believe it. “I mean, he hasn’t really got a bad bone in his body yet he has to pay for his father’s mistake. It’s not really fair is it?”

“That’s stupid.” I strangely agreed. “I understand that too. My granddad is a Death Eater and because of that we have house checks.” The house checks was something that got forced in to place after the war. Basically Aurors come to check out our home every few years to see if we’re harbouring dark arts crap and planning on becoming the next dark lord. It’s stupid but we’re not trusted. We never will be even though we don’t dabble in that crap. Scorpius has to have his home checked too. “But it also works the opposite way. I mean, you get to reap the rewards because of your father don’t you?”

I didn’t see anything wrong with my words but they caused a switch to turn inside his brain. He scowled at me. “What the hell would you know about it?” I just sat there, trying to find a witty comeback. “You’re just like the rest of them.” That stung me harshly. “You don’t know anything.” He shook his head. “Good bye, Nott. Have a pleasant night.” He stormed off leaving me in the common room feeling more confused than ever.  Maybe he was right. Maybe I didn’t know anything right now but I had a feeling I would understand someday because I had a strange feeling that this confusion wasn’t over, it was only the beginning.


 





The Next Time On The Human Factor

In a universe that was ever changing, one thing hadn’t shifted; Damien still refused to look at me. He was sitting on the Gryffindor table, laughing with some girl I didn’t know the name of. I had distracted myself by threating to kill someone with a spoon earlier. She came up to me and asked if Albus and I were in a relationship as we’d be seen on a ‘double date’, in the halls. I’m just thankful that out night time yelling was a secret between us. To be fair, I respected her guts to actually ask me but that didn’t stop me from wanting to kill her. Then again, in terms of looks, I look harmless, less than harmless really. I had inherited delicate features to snare myself a pureblood husband according to my mother but that is another story. So I threatened her with my spoon, told her I’d break her with it and the answer was no, I wouldn’t touch him even if it was the choice between that and being a pleasant person. She looked at me like I was weird, muttered ‘I thought not’ and ran away from me. I had gone up in the world, I was now part of scandalous gossip.

 


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