Chapter 4 : The Five Fools
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I quickly stopped talking to Miranda, and whacked her on the upper arm when she opened her mouth to whisper something more, smiling despite myself. She sighed, and hit me back tiredly, rolling her eyes. I never said she needed to.
Merlin, she’s immature.
Trying not to look too excited, I folded my arms on our black desk and apprehensively watched Professor Morgan finally snap at the class to shut up.
Sure, normal people would not enjoy having Potions first thing on a Monday morning with an unusually moody teacher, but I just can’t see why. It’s wonderful- Potions is one of the subjects I actually like. I’m fucking good at it, if I do say so myself.
“Good morning, class.”
And I quite like Professor Morgan. Professor Morgan is our Potions’ teacher, and the best bloody Potions’ teacher there ever was, in my opinion. He’s this very skinny, very tall man, with a big nose and a wild mane of hair. He never shows even the slightest sign of stubble, and it always makes me wonder how he does it. He’s a mystery, old Morgan is.
“Good morning, Professor Morgan!” I chanted, beaming. I was one of the very few- half of the class was asleep, and the other half was too grumpy to be nice.
I feel like a kid in a candy store, so excited I could barf. I’m very rarely not cross, but when the occasion strikes, I can be pretty nice. Just saying- it can get to the extent where I send a teacher a love letter. I won’t be calling out any specific names.
It’s not as if Professor Morgan is the nicest person in the world, but he’s okay. I like him.
“Today, we will be doing a very curious and very difficult concoction,” He drawled in bored tone with his gaze flat, but even so, I had to contain my squealing. A new potion is what I needed right now. “It is called the Ageing Potion.” As he said it, I deflated a little, and had to give a little sigh of disappointment, frowning. The potion’s too easy. I’d learnt it two years ago!
Professor Morgan is losing his touch. “Can anybody tell me what it does?” I know what it does, but as I didn’t want to look like a pompous prat, I didn’t raise my hand and waited for someone else to. Bonnie did. Obviously.
“Yes, Miss Mackenzie?” Morgan droned tiredly, closing his eyes for a second. I think he also believes that Bon is one hell of an annoying smartarse. Actually, I’m pretty sure everyone does.
Bonnie can’t keep her mouth shut for the life of her.
“The Ageing Potion is a potion which causes the drinker to become older. Whether this potion makes the drinker older in body only or in both body and mind, it is unclear. It is clear, however, that the more of the potion is drunk, the larger the aging which occurs. The effects wear off after time- it is only temporary after all, but can be rendered stronger if brewed correctly,” Bonnie rambled off, looking quiet pratty. She took a deep breath, and then smiled so largely I thought her face was going to crack in half. I think her eye twitched a little too.
Professor Morgan just scratched his head and nodded a few times, seeming distracted, or bored. I couldn’t tell- but he certainly didn’t look interested.
“Correct, Mackenzie. Twenty points to Ravenclaw.” As he said it, Bonnie huffed arrogantly and whispered something to Eva, who was sitting on her right. Eva smiled, and nodded. I rolled my eyes.
“Well, the instructions are on the board. You have two hours to complete this potion. Get to work!” Morgan exclaimed, before plopping himself in his seat and sighing. He looked tired, as if he hadn’t slept of the night. I’ll have to see what’s wrong with him.
I skipped to the backroom to get the ingredients for Miranda and mine’s potion, humming to myself while picking different kinds of things from the shelves. I couldn’t reach the top shelf; I had to use my wand. Sometimes I hate being so small.
As I finally came back with my arms full of bat wings, pixie dropping and other fine things happily, someone suddenly grabbed my upper arm painfully. I quickly stopped in my tracks and held on tightly to the ingredients that seemed heavier by the minute. I turned my head around, annoyed, to find Dom. I eyed her wearily.
“What the hell are you doing, Dom?” I calmly asked, fighting with myself to keep the ingredients from falling to the ground. I don’t want to get poo on my white shirt. If I do, it’ll all be Dom’s fault.
Her eyes were wide and she looked sort of excited, as if something extraordinary was happening. I stared at her, irritated that she wasn’t saying anything, and waited for her to start talking. Dom somehow always gets me to question her sanity.
“Don’t look,” She started, and I nodded slowly for her to continue. “But James is staring at you.” As she said his name, my heart dropped a mile. I didn’t want it. It felt empty, gone. I tried to smile, to breathe, but I only felt like a china glass doll- too fragile to hold. I despised it.
It feels good to forget he exists at times. There’s no pressure anymore- I let myself forget so easily. But in the end, I always see him, always hear him. He’s still here.
“So?” I try to act defiant, strong. I want to seem unbreakable on the outside, so she won’t see how weak I am on the inside. Why is she telling me this? I don’t understand, and I don’t want to care.
But I do.
Dom just looked outraged, pushing her somewhat square glasses up her nose.
“So?! He’s inconspicuously eyeing you up!” She is supposed to be smart- a Ravenclaw but she’s clueless. It hurts to think of him.
I love Dom, but sometimes she just doesn’t know when to shut up. It’s only been five months. I don’t like talking about him. I don’t like thinking of him. I don’t like him.
“Dom,” Even to my ears I sound heartbroken. As she saw my face, her contented smile silently disappeared, only to be replaced by a morose expression. “I don’t care.” The ingredients I was holding seemed so much heavier now- it was so much harder to hold onto them. I just wanted to let the weight I felt go.
For a second it was quiet, and the silence was so deep, so suffocating.
“I’m sorry, Toni. I was so stupid- I forgot.” I don’t know how she could have forgotten; nobody had.
“It’s fine,” Was the last thing I told her, before I returned to my seat beside Miranda at the front of the classroom. She looked at me for a second, and then frowned.
“What was that about?” She asked, but I don’t think I could have answered her even if I had wanted to. I wasn’t myself- I never felt regret, remorse. I was pathetic.
“Nothing,” I murmured, while starting to cut our black bat wings.
Because it was nothing, and I was fine.
I was fine.
“You alright, Ton?” I snapped my head around and looked over at Eva, who was on her bed in her bright yellow t-shirt and loose purple sweatpants. She always likes to wear very flashy pyjamas, for some reason. As if someone is going to go ‘Wow, your pyjamas are awesome!’. I just nodded, and went back to reading the muggle book my mum had sent me last week. I was alright.
“Yeah, you’ve been pretty quiet today. Is something bothering you?” Miranda interrupted my reading, while drying her hair with her towel. I don’t recall Miranda ever caring. This is weird.
“No, I’m fine,” I told both of them. I tried to smile, but it hurt my face so much I decided not to. Randa stopped drying her hair and stared at me for a while. She had her pink matching pyjamas on, and I remember laughing in her face the first time she had worn them. She then somehow made all of my hair fall off. It was so embarrassing; I had to walk to the Hospital Wing completely bald with her laughing hysterically behind me. Miranda narrowed her eyes.
“Something’s not right,” She stated, before throwing her wet towel on her bed roughly.
What are we in, one of those muggle detective movies?
I squirmed under her knowing gaze, and looked away. When Miranda looks at me, I sometimes feel like she’s looking into my very soul. It’s kind of scary.
“What the hell is wrong with you?” She asked me bluntly, and Eva gasped from her own bed. Eva is too nice for her own good.
“Shut it, Eva. I know Toni best and I certainly know that she does not sulk during a Potions’ class.” Eva looked offended, but eventually shrugged it off and went back to reading Witch Weekly. Dom looked up from her homework worriedly, and an expression of understanding etched itself onto her face. She opened her mouth to talk, but I cut across her. It’s true though, I would never sulk during a Potions’ class.
“I think I know whether or not I am fine!” I snapped her way, but Miranda just raised her eyebrows, crossing her arms across her chest. I hate when Miranda acts like she’s right. Even though she is. How does she always look so superior, even in her pyjamas? I wish I could look all high and mighty too when I look down on her.
“Sure, and I’m Dumbledore in disguise.” Wouldn’t put it past her.
“Just shut up, Miranda. I’m going to bed.” As I started to snuggle under my warm covers, Miranda ripped all of them off of me, and I let out a cry of indignation. I was cold! I pulled my knees to my chest and rested my chin on them, pouting.
“No, you are not. You’re going to tell me what the hell’s wrong with you.” Bonnie was smirking in my face on her bed in the corner of our dormitory, her homework lying abandoned (probably finished) on her bed. Like I said, I have great friends.
“No, I am not.”
“Oh, so there is something wrong with you, is there?” She smirked at me, and I felt like I was in hell, and she was the devil. She’s too observant for her own good.
“It’s my fault!” Dom suddenly yelled, and tumbled off of her bed to rush to my side. “I was idiotic.” As she always is. She looked panicked and worried.
Although I never really think about it, Dom would make a great mum. Nice, crazy at the right moments, slightly annoying, kind of gullible, emotional. Yup, I could imagine her being a mother. Two years ago, when we had our O.W.L’s, she was so stressed out that she started to cry because she grabbed the last toast there was in the closest basket of bread, which happened to be a burnt one. I had to give her mine.
Miranda just stared at Dom with a stony expression. Honestly, she’s a pretty bad friend. I don’t even know why I am friends with her.
“Yes, you were,” I supplied, and Dom bit her lip guiltily.
“I told you I was sorry, Toni!”
“That doesn’t change anything! You know I hate talking about him!” As I said it, a silence ensued in our already quiet dormitory. Great. We all knew who I was talking about. Nobody was laughing, nobody was smiling. Bonnie looked uncomfortable, while Eva looked understanding. But the only person I could see was Miranda, who was glaring at Dom with all of her might.
“Why’d you mention him to her?”
“He’s my cousin!” Dom cried defensively. She looked on the verge of tears, and I couldn’t help but feel bad for her. She’s apologizing, and I’m throwing her apology right back in her face.
“That has nothing do to with this!”
“He was staring at her! What was I supposed to do, dismiss it?!” Dom asked, pushing her beige glasses up her nose swiftly once again. Miranda stopped talking, and frowned. Miranda rarely frowns, and I always have to bite back my laughter- she always looks constipated when she does.
“He was staring at Antoinette?” She asked, and Dom nodded.
“Yes, he was.”
“He hasn’t talked to her in five months! What the bloody hell else does he want from her?” Miranda sounded outraged, angry. She was narrowing her eyes at Dom.
“I don’t know. He looked sorry,” Dom murmured, and I sharply looked at Dom square in the face.
“He’ll never be sorry.”
“What, does he want Toni back now or something?” Miranda interrupted, and glared at Dom as if it was all her fault. Dom shrugged, while Miranda narrowed her black eyes. I sighed, irritated. “The arsehole! I mean, he actually thinks he can-” Miranda seethed, but I cut her off.
“Stop, Miranda! So he was staring at me- it’s not as if it hasn’t happened before!” I said, but even I knew that it was useless. I should have just acted as if nothing was bothering me the whole day.
“Sure it has, before he broke your fucking heart!” Just throw it out there, Miranda. She was now looking at me with an expression of utter disappointment. Saying it made it so real, so true. He broke my heart, and I let him. Even though I agreed with her, I rolled my eyes.
I couldn’t think of anything else to say. It’s true. Miranda is always right.
For a second we were all silent, and everybody seemed to be staring each other down. Miranda was shaking her head at me disbelievingly, Dom was eyeing Miranda wearily, and I was trying to look away from Randa by watching Bonnie, who was reading some article in Witch Weekly with Eva, whispering quietly. It was awkward.
“Hey guys,” Bon said, looking up from the article as if nothing had happened. Normally, I would think she’s completely inconsiderate, but right now I’m kind of grateful that we don’t have to talk about him anymore. “Look at this.” She ushered us over hurriedly.
Nobody moved for a moment, before I got off of my bed and slowly walked to Eva’s bed across the room, Dom and Miranda following me stiffly. I have a feeling that our conversation isn’t quiet over.
We crowded around the article Bonnie was pointing at.
“It’s an article by Olivia Clark,” Eva explained quickly, and opened her mouth to read it out loud. Did she think we couldn’t read for ourselves or something?
“Isn’t she the woman who writes an article every week in Witch Weekly and gives really excellent advice on relationships?” Dom interrupted, frowning.
“Yes it’s her, now shut up!” Miranda snapped, and Dom cowered slightly at the sharpness in Miranda’s usually calm voice.
“I’m sure it’s utter bullshit, then,” I concluded, interrupting Eva again, rolling my eyes.
Eva snapped her gaze away from the paper in her hands, and gasped. Miranda sighed, closing her eyes as if it was the end of the world.
“Utter bullshit?! You should be ashamed. She gives the best advice on relationships! She’s had so many, I think she knows!” Eva frowned, and I raised an eyebrow. I believe she’s had, like, three. Big deal.
“Sure,” I muttered quietly. Bonnie hit me on the head and told me to shut it. I then proceeded to also hit her on the head by jumping on her. For a while we fought- biting, screaming, scratching, and punching each other, while the others just stared at us blankly.
“Stop it, you idiots,” Miranda finally told us, before pushing me off of Bonnie. I glared at her, and ran a hand through my tangled auburn hair. Sometimes it’s surprising how exasperating Bonnie can get. She always tells us we’re the annoying ones. As if.
“You’re an idiot.” Bonnie was frowning and trying to flatten her hair, which had turned messier and larger than usual. I think she shouldn’t even bother- her hair is always just one big orange mess. Like a pumpkin. I hate pumpkins.
“You’re face is an idiot,” She replied. Wow, nice one. Never gets old, does it?
“Fuck off,” I snarled, but she just rolled her eyes at me and smirked.
“I love you too, now can we read this bloody article already?” I huffed and crossed my arms, shutting my mouth. It was quiet for a moment.
“Oh right! Um, so this is what she wrote: “Hello, dear readers. I am here this week with another article for you. As I am a Muggleborn witch, I have heard of this organization called Alcoholics Anonymous. It is an assembly of people with drinking problems who usually see each other every other week, and talk about their drinking hardships. Now, I know that you are all probably wondering why I am telling you this. Well, a few weeks back, I created my own little group, and called it ‘Singles Anonymous’. It is what you could call a gathering of all kinds of different single people, who come every week to talk about their dating problems. I got the idea from the Alcoholics Anonymous group, and I decided to go through with my plan of creating it, since a lot of you like what I have to say.”,” Eva paused here, and looked at each of our faces excitedly.
““And so, this is what I got- every week, there is an assembly that will be held at the Leaky Cauldron for Singles Anonymous, which I will be hosting. Anybody is welcome to come, and it is on every Wednesday. I hope you can make it. Magically yours, Olivia Clark.”.” Eva then stopped reading, and beamed at us. We were all silent, staring back at her blankly.
“Is that all? Her articles are normally around three pages long,” I supplied pointedly, raising my eyebrows. The last time I read an article by Olivia Clark, it had taken me forty minutes to finish. I think I even went to bed after having finished it- I was too tired not to.
I’m pretty sure it was eight o’clock in the evening. Eva just scoffed.
“Of course that is not all. It says there is more on page thirty three, but that’s not the point!” She smiled again, and Bonnie nodded encouragingly, smiling as if she knew what Eva was talking about. Well, this is enlightening. A new conspiracy has apparently been created.
“Then what is?” Miranda asked, rolling her eyes in an obnoxious manner. Although I’m happy she asked- Dom, her and me are still pretty lost.
“The point is, Antoinette could create a group like that of her own!” Eva exclaimed, and Dom frowned, staring into space. Finally, she grinned, and I could see the admiration in her eyes when she looked at Eva.
“Oh Merlin! That’s extraordinary, Ev!” Eva smiled thanks, and seemed as excited as Dom was. They decided to start bouncing on the bed together like five year olds. Sometimes Eva doesn’t act so smart, now that I think about it. She’s behaving more like Dom every single day. If she becomes a second version of Dom, I might just shoot myself in the head.
“Why me?” I cried indignantly, throwing my hands up in the air. “And what is?!”
“Oh God, no,” Miranda said, and unexpectedly smirked. Why am I so slow? Even Dom understands, for Merlin’s sake!
“Why would I create a ‘Singles Anonymous’ group?” I asked them impatiently. Dom smiled at me, pushing her glasses up her nose.
I remember in fourth year when she came back with those glasses, I told her that she had only bought them to look smarter. She said that I was just jealous, or rather- avaricious. I didn’t even know what it meant. The thing is, Dom has never had a problem seeing everything quite clearly. This strengthens my belief that her glasses contain plain lenses. I still haven’t checked if they do…
“Do you remember the wager we made?” I nodded, with a slight raise of my brown eyebrow. “Well, you could execute this ‘Singles Anonymous’ thing with Malfoy!” She beamed at me, but I just looked stared at all of them, frowning. I didn’t understand what they were going on about.
“What the hell does that have to do with our bet?”
“I said that you could train him! Now is your chance- you could create a kind of Singles Anonymous group yourself!” Dom replied excitedly, still slightly bouncy. Why would I do that? One kid is already enough trouble.
“Why? And, aren’t you supposed to be betting against me?” I asked curiously. I was confused.
Dom waved a hand airily as if to dismiss the stupid thought.
“That doesn’t matter. I won’t aid you; I will only attend to the meetings.”
“You need at least a couple of people to create a group. I could just train Scorpius himself…” I reasoned. It seems I’m the only one out of us five that thinks this is the stupidest idea of the century.
“No! You will find candidates, and then you will aide them in their quest to find people who are… foolish enough to date them! It’ll be fun!” Dom grinned, and as if on cue, everybody else did. It was freaky.
Quest? Even by Dom, that word sounds slightly overrated when said. As if we’re in some kind of magical kingdom where we have to defeat the evil dragon to save the beautiful princess.
Stupid? Yes. Funny? Alright, yeah.
“But why would I want to create a group when I could just coach Malfoy alone…?”
“Because it’s fun, alright? Lord, sometimes you’re so slow it’s surprising,” Miranda finally cracked and snapped at me, rolling her dark eyes. I’m the one who’s slow? Please.
“Shut up,” I snapped at her, but she just smiled back quite sarcastically. “So what would I get out of this?” I asked, turning to look at Dom questioningly.
“Well, we could raise the stakes? As in, if you get all of the people in this ‘group’ to become datable within the end of the year, you’ll get-” Dom said thoughtfully, but I cut across her.
“Two hundred galleons.” Hey eyes promptly turned wide.
“Are you completely barmy? Fifty galleons was already too much! I don’t have that kind of money!” She cried.
“Well then, I guess you’re just going to have to win, aren’t you?” I replied cheekily, smiling. Dom opened her mouth to protest, but I just rolled my eyes.
“Do you want me to do this thing or not?” I asked exasperatedly, and Dom reluctantly nodded. I finally grinned.
“Alright, it’s settled. How many people will I need to ‘recruit’?” I asked Eva amusingly, but she just shrugged nonchalantly. I was joking. Man, these people are really serious about this bet. Although, I should be too, since I have a fifty percent chance of losing it…
“How many you want. But not more than ten, as there are only three of us who can help you,” She reasoned, and I nodded. Dom was also nodding. Obviously.
“Okay then, I’ll ‘recruit’ (by the way, that’s a bloody stupid word) five people. Five people is okay, right?” As everybody nodded, I also nodded. “We’ll call them the Five Fools,” I wildly invented, snorting. There was a short silence, while everybody stared at me weirdly. Then Dom started laughing her incredulous laugh, and everybody hesitantly laughed away with her. Even Miranda cracked a small smile. Wow, she’s turning nicer every day.
Children, miracles do happen. Believe it!
“That’s so fucked up, Toni,” Miranda rolled her eyes. I rolled my eyes right back at her. Ungrateful bitch.
“You’re face is fucked up, Miranda,” I replied, and for once, she shut up.
Shit, that really does always work.
Hey everybody (anybody who's reading this story.. haha)! I hope you're enjoying this story!! I really am, I love writing it, it's always loads of fun. Well, the next chapter will probably be very long, so it'll take a longer time to update. Sorry, folks :) And I'm probably going to be updating Unseen, so look out for that :)
xxx sofia :)
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