“You’re such a traitor!”
“Oh yeah, that’s what you’re mad about here!”
“For fuck’s sake, both of you just calm down!”
“It’s his fault!” Jack whined and spluttered. “Tom, get off of me!”
Tom narrowed his eyes, almost foaming at the mouth. “Don’t act innocent you little shit!”
“Get off of me!”
“Fucking hell!” Dom cursed, before wrenching apart the two brothers. “Tom let Jack go; this isn’t getting either of you anywhere!”
The minute hand had just chimed six when Tom strode down the hallway with a faring glint of anger in his usually kind eyes. He strode over to Jack and I as we spoke about class and wrenched his brother from a standing position. A few had gasped at the outburst, including me.
Overpowering his brother quickly, Tom held Jack in a headlock, his bare, muscled arm gripped tightly around his little brother, his bicep choking him menacingly. Dominic followed quickly, chasing after him. He shouted meaningless words towards his roommate and told Jack to run. But the youngest Gates brother did nothing of the sort.
Albus arrived shortly after, he and Scorpius walking from their Defence lesson. They came across the commotion, battled through the growing crowd and stood across from me. Scorpius made no effort to step in – as he usually did to a fight – but instead watched as his roommate choked my friend.
Dom eventually pulled the two apart, sending Tom falling backwards on to a group of cheering Ravenclaw boys, and Jack gasping to the floor.
I jerked forward and laid a hand on to Jack’s back. “Jack, Jack can you breathe?”
“Alright,” Scorpius’ voice bellowed. “Nothing to see here, fight’s over – unfortunately.”
The sound of a sighing groan sounded from areas of the crowd, utter disappointment radiating from the monsters. “Oi!” Albus called. “What are you looking at, fuck off.”
I was torn between glaring at my best friend and still staring in to the eyes of a spluttering Jack. I rubbed his arm and tried to help him up from the floor.
“What on earth was that?” Scorpius questioned, assisting me in my aid of Jack.
Dom still held Tom by the shoulder, pushing him back roughly with every other syllable as he spoke angrily towards him. The eldest brother didn’t look towards his roommate but towards his brother. He was fuming, yet, he didn’t seem to understand quite what he had done.
Jack coughed. “Bloody hell.”
My arms seemed to instinctively wrap around him and he swayed unsteadily. “Jack! You’re okay!”
“He wasn’t going to die,” Albus replied, pulling Jack to a straight stand and throwing one of his arms around my shoulders. “It was just brotherly fighting. I used to do it with James all the time.”
Scorpius scoffed. “Yeah, but when James used to make you cry, he never did it with hatred in his eyes.”
“He didn’t beat me.” Albus rectified.
“So all that crying was victory sobs was it?” I asked snappily. “Albus be considerate.”
Jack laughed quietly and hoarsely. “I don’t need sympathy. I just want to know why the bastard choked me.”
I wanted to defend Tom; this was widely out of character for him, yet Scorpius and Al didn’t seem all that surprised. Dom seemed to know how to handle the situation with authority.
When I tugged on Al’s fingers he turned his face towards mine. “What?”
“Does Tom do this a lot?”
“Define a lot?” Jack mumbled.
Scorpius sent Albus a warning look and headed over to Tom and Dominic, who were still stood at the other end of the busy corridor. Neither seemed too pleased as he arrived.
Albus pulled his arm from around my shoulders and guided me down the corridor. “Come on, let’s go for a walk. You coming Jack?”
“Yeah,” he agreed, running his hand over his neck, needing out sore spots. “I could use a stroll.”
No one spoke until Albus had guided the two of us down the end of the corridor and up a flight of stairs, towards the Great Hall.
I tugged on Albus’ jumper. “So does he?” I asked again. “Fight a lot I mean, does Tom get angry a lot?”
He sighed, “Not unless something really ticks him off. But I guess that you should really ask Jack.”
Jack saw my expectant stare and smirked, still rubbing at the back of his neck. “It’s not that he is a violent person, he really doesn’t like fighting. It’s just that he is angered easily. He’s been spending so much time with you and Dom lately, separately I mean, that he’s had no reason to get angry. He inherited it from Dad; they’re so alike it’s scary.”
“I’m sorry, Jack.” Albus apologised. “It’s my fault; I was winding him up this morning. I saw how annoyed he was getting, but I just couldn’t stop.”
“It’s all good; I’m used to it all now, if I’m honest.” Jack admitted. “He’s not a bad person; in fact my brother is lovely. He would never hurt someone intentionally. Mum thinks that he has anger issues.”
I furrowed a brow. “But you’re scarily protective,” I said to Al. “You don’t let anyone near me that you don’t trust, if you knew that Tom was-“
“I trust Tom,” he interrupted. “He would never, ever, get angry towards you. He likes you too much.”
“But Jack’s his brother.” I said, shaking my head firmly. “They have the same blood, and he still hurt him.”
“That’s exactly the reason why, Ran. He went for me because he knew that he could, and I wouldn’t hold it against him.” Jack explained. “Being an only child, you can’t realise the bond between siblings – you can practically get away with anything, you will want to murder each other at times, but you’ll always find it in your heart to love them.”
“Even if it’s in a really small place,” Ally added, smiling at me caringly. “You’ve seen Lily right, the way that she pushes James’ buttons.”
I nodded, “Like last year, when she snogged his roommate?”
Albus chuckled quietly. “Yeah, like that. James wanted to kill his roommate for doing that to his sister, even when he knew that it was Lily that insinuated the kiss. Being a sibling makes you see the other person for how you want to see them – at their best. You will always see the light in your brother or sister.”
“And you’ll always forgive them,” I said softly “Like you seem to have already forgiven Thomas, even though he put you in a head lock.”
“Yes,” Jack agreed. “Although I don’t quite see how you get away with calling him Thomas.”
I grinned. “Well I don’t to his face.”
“I wouldn’t,” Albus said. “But you could probably call him Twinkle-fairy and he wouldn’t bat an eyelid.”
“Please don’t make this conversation uncomfortable,” I pleaded, turning to face both the boys. “But can I just ask, what was it all about? Albus, if you upset him, why did Tom go after Jack.”
The two lads shared a look, one that seemed to match the other, a similar on to which Scorpius gave Al before leaving to see their roommates. I merely batted my eyelashes and backed off.
“It’s all good,” I rectified. “I can see it’s a boy’s thing, I won’t press it anymore.”
“And that’s why I love you, wifey.” Albus said as he tugged on a strand of my messy hair.
I whinnied as he pulled lightly, moving a grip from its place. I pushed it back and turned around, carrying on to the Great Hall. I was looking forward to dinner, I wanted some tea. I wanted to be able to stir it and watch as it swirled.
Jack walked through first. I didn’t see him stop, and instead walked in to his back. Albus caught me and shoved me back upright.
Laughing he peered over Jacks shoulder. “Oh, good one Perry.”
At the mention of his name, my eyes automatically shot over to the Hufflepuff table. Perry sat towards the end, close to the door. His dark hair looked a little shorter than when I last saw him yesterday, as if he had cut it between the two times. He put his head in to his hands and rubbed his eyes with his palms. But it wasn’t because he was tired.
Next to him sat Marilyn. Her blonde hair was extra curly and her shirt was extra tight. A little part of me wanted to smile that he took absolutely no notice. She pouted her lips and played with her hair. Her fingers brushed over his bicep. But still he only smiled politely and nodded at her persistent talking.
“Again?!” Jack said in disbelief. “She’s been all over him for about a week now – every time I turn around she is trying to throw herself at him.”
I grinned. “Lucky him.”
“She hasn’t been around Scorpius much lately, actually,” Albus recalled. “Maybe she’s moved on.”
“And on to Perry James,” I finished for him.
Albus shook his head and smacked Jack’s shoulder in a friendly way. “You’ve got a very lucky friend there, she’s hot, yes, but she does happen to be a little forward.”
“And carry every sexually passed disease known to man.”
I noticed that both the boys turned to me at my informative words. Albus’ expression was one of slight discomfort and a little bit of disbelief. He wasn’t used to me after spending so much time with Scorpius and Dom. Yet Jack simply laughed. His chuckle is contagious, it’s light-hearted and warming – no matter what the situation.
“On that very-true note, are we sitting with the Slytherins today, or are we saving your mate?” Ally asked with a hint of humour to his tone.
Jack thought for a moment. “The question is, can I deal with an angry Perry later?”
“I would assume that he still doesn’t talk.” Albus said, stepping past Jack. “So I’d think that you’re not going to get shouted at.”
“You’d be surprised.” Jack murmured.
I placed my hand on the small of his back. “Don’t make Perry mad at you.”
Al leaned forward and hooked his fingers in to the pockets of my school pinafore. He pulled me towards him and flicked me in the centre of my forehead. “So, to the ‘Puff’s?”
We followed Jack as he sat down across from Perry. I didn’t look at Marilyn as I took the seat across from Perry but I could feel her glare. Albus slipped in beside me, before leaning over to grab the bowl of mash potatoes.
Jack grinned at his friend and then towards Maleficent and watched as she continued to speak to Perry in a hushed tone.
Albus placed a small amount of potatoes on to my plate before handing it over to Jack. He helped himself to sausages before digging in to the mound he had created and inhaling it like a fool. I picked up my fork. I didn’t feel hungry, I rarely did. But I ate anyway.
Marilyn laughed. “Oh, Perry, you’re so funny.”
My fingers were tangled in the ends of my hair, but I still looked up. It appeared that the others did the same.
“He didn’t say anything,” Albus slurred through a full mouth. I closed it shut for him in a mildly disgusted manner.
“Well, maybe he doesn’t talk to you,” Marilyn sneered. “But he certainly talks to-“
“No he doesn’t,” Jack piped up. “I’m sitting next to the two of you, and don’t talk about him like he’s not here.”
I raised my eyebrow in Jack’s direction; he had stolen my words to him from a while ago. It seemed he had listened to me. Perry retained his straight face, arms folded and slightly tired demeanour. His school robes and jumper had been removed and he sat in only his shirt and tie. The black and yellow striped material hung from his neck loosely, as if he didn’t have a care in the world. Even I – the most oblivious girl in the world – noticed his Keeper’s posture.
Albus and Jack dug back in to their meals, talking animatedly between bites. I didn’t keep up with their conversation; they were speaking too fast, and with too many Quidditch terminologies. Jack said something cheeky, and through his constant chatter, Al leant towards him with a gravy covered knife. I turned my face away and looked towards my empty tea cup – they weren’t serving tea tonight.
I put my fork down, feeling as if I had lost my appetite. It felt odd, eating without Tom’s comments. He was always there, sitting nearby, ready to jump in with a witty remark that made the others shut up. His words were followed by Dom’s, and they were all silenced by Scorpius, only for Jack to re-start the conversation. It was different, missing three of the usual crowd.
My plate seemed oddly empty, only little bits of potato left upon the plate, and the odd bit of gravy that I had poured on top. I looked up, to find Perry’s gaze upon me. I gave him a small smile and in return he winked. It was a gesture that didn’t go unnoticed by Marilyn.
She quickly looked away from Perry, and towards the two chatting boys. Jack wrenched the knife from Albus’ grasp and set it down on to his own plate. Al began to chop up a green bean with the side of his fork.
Marilyn looked and me and forced a smile. “Ranny, I haven’t seen much of you lately. I didn’t hear you come in last night.”
“I was there,” I said truthfully. “I was just in the Common Room until late.”
“Really?” she flouted. “I could have sworn you would have been in the Slytherin Dorms – I mean, since you went totally crazy a while ago and all that shit, you and Albus have been rather close. More so than usual.”
I let out a long breath. Already eating with Maleficent, I could see was going to be a long meal. “Not really. I haven’t stayed in there for a while.”
“Well maybe you should go back,” she pushed cheerily. “I don’t mean that in a bitchy way, who am I kidding; I’m always bitchy, I just mean that we used to use your bed for sleepovers and stuff with the girls.”
“When it’s not in Norway, you mean?” I asked quietly.
She blinked and dared look anywhere but at me. “Yes, when it’s not in Norway. Norway is a code word we have,” she said to Perry with a smile too big for her mouth. “Oh, Ranny, you do make me laugh. Are you alright, by the way; you’re not saying much.”
I looked up at Maleficent with a shrug and imagined her melting if I threw my glass of water over her head. She could be the Wicked Witch of the West. She would melt when the rain came.
Instead I pushed my dry, layered hair off of my face. “I’m just being careful.” I admitted. “I’m worried that if I say a country the table between us will magically go there. Wouldn’t that be funny?”
Her laugh was hollow, loud and fake. She tossed her short hair out of her eyes and held her hand out as if she were explaining an entertaining story. Jack and Albus seemed to have finished their own conversation and were listening in on ours, rather obviously at that.
“Oh Ranny, you always have been able to make me laugh.” She cooed.
Al leant towards me a little more and whispered in my ear, “is she on something?” his breath tickled my neck and I laughed quietly.
“I’m not sure,” I replied in a whisper. “I think she’s trying to impress Perry.”
“That’s obvious, she likes her lads big and strong,” he said pointedly, cheekily gesturing to himself, before taking a sip from my water.
“Do you two want to share your conversation?” Jack asked teasingly, jabbing Albus in the arm. “It’s not nice to whisper at the table.”
I bit down on to my bottom lip. “It’s not a conversation for sharing.”
“We’re naming our children, aren’t we Tuck?” Albus said with a grin. He saw my glare yet he chose to overlook it. “We’re going to get married in a chapel and have one hundred babies.”
“One hundred?” Jack asked with wide eyes. “That’s a lot, you better get started now.”
I put my head in to my folded arms upon the table, having pushed my plate forward. But I didn’t miss the quizzical look on Perry’s face as he looked back and forth between Al and me. I made a low, painful sound as Jack prattled on about names.
After ‘Ken’ and ‘Olga’ had been mentioned he stopped. “Wait, ring, you need a ring.”
“Why?” Albus questioned.
“For marriage,” Jack answered, as if it were the most obvious thing in the world. “You can’t make babies until you’re married – it’s not right.”
“For Circe’s sake,” Marilyn swore. “This is childish.”
I wasn’t about to admit that for once I agreed with her.
I have no problem with it when Albus speaks of this in the Common Room, when he teases me in class, when he calls me pet names in front of Scorpius. I couldn’t understand why I was so embarrassed by it now. Telepathically, I was begging them both to stop.
“Does anyone have a ring?” Albus asked excitedly. “Oi, Perry pass yours over will you?”
“Oh no, he’s not going to,” Jack answered for him. His answer seemed to simply back up the glare that Perry gave Al at this moment. It went unnoticed by the raven haired boy though. “That’s his father’s ring, he never takes it off.”
Albus thought for a moment. “I’ve got a ring in my dorm room, I think it used to be Lily’s, it might fit your abnormally small fingers. Come on Ran, let’s go.”
I took this moment to stay as still as a statue. I kept my face covered by my arms and only pulled back as Albus tugged lightly on my arms.
“I think she might be asleep.” Jack offered kindly.
Marilyn snorted. “Or dead. Perry would you like to go for a walk with me?”
“I’m afraid that he can’t, Lynnie.” Albus interrupted. “For you see, James here promised that he would help me with my Thoski Jolt for Quidditch.” I ponded for a moment; I was sure he had just made the move up.
“But you’re on separate teams.” She questioned.
Albus feigned shock towards Marilyn as I looked up from the table top. “There is nothing like a little bit of House Unity – you of all people should know that, especially considering your evil army of skanks are from other houses.”
Her mouth dropped instantly and her eyes narrowed. I bit down on my bottom lip to stop myself from laughing. It was easy to see, by the look on Albus’ face, he had been waiting to say something to her for the entire meal. Her nostrils flared as she jumped up from the table and stormed over towards the Gryffindor benches.
Jack spoke next. “Well, now that’s settled. Who’s up for some desert?”
AN; Hello! I hope that you all enjoyed this chapter!
The response I got to the last chapter wasn’t quite what I had expected; I thought that people would either be really, really happy or really, really sad – but that wasn’t really what turned out, more … mutual acceptance. :D
As I usually say, I have always wanted the same pairing to be together, and I so desperately want to just write the final pairing here, but I can’t. So please, I beg of you, please don’t stop reading just because you’re not sure if you’re going to like the person she ends with (that’s to say she even ends up with someone). Please give it the chance, although I know that most of you will; you’re all lovely. :)
So, more of Maleficent in this chapter… good old Marilyn. What are your opinions on her; she’s lovely (note the sarcasm). And for Perry, do you think he will put up with her advances?
Don’t forget to leave a review, ROBIN if you enjoyed it, or HOOK if you didn’t?
And, any guesses as to which fairy tale the next chapter is named after?
Thank you for reading!