Chapter 9 : Have fun in Hogsmeade!
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The characters and setting belong to JK, obviously :)
Many thanks to @GinnyPotter25 at TDA for the image!
The second week of November, their first trip to Hogsmeade as seventh years, arrived. Hermione was glad that she would be getting a break from everything and just get a day to relax with her friends; it was always good to get away from their workload for a few hours.
Hermione woke bright and early on the morning of the trip, a bright sunny day, the birds were chirping, the sun was out, and there wasn't a cloud in the sky. It was beautiful. Hermione knew that she was awake far before any of her friends, seeing as how it was only 7:30 in the morning. She put her hair up in a ponytail and got dressed quickly in a striped blue-and-silver sweater; black skinny-jeans and black boots that were perfect for November. While it was a beautiful day, there was still a bit of a chill that foreshadowed winter.
She grabbed her black scarf and silver gloves before going to the door. She would have worn her Gryffindor scarf but it clashed terribly with her outfit. Hermione opened her door quickly and peeked around it, she made sure the coast was clear and ran down the stairs before Malfoy could wake and stop her. She'd been avoiding him for the past week; she didn't want to talk to him, not yet at least. She felt that it was best if they put some distance between them, but only for a little bit.
She walked down to the Great Hall smiling brightly. She wasn't a morning person, but she had a feeling that this was going to be a good day, therefore she was as happy as a kid at the circus!
She sat down at the Gryffindor table. There were a few odd people scattered here and there. At the Slytherin table sat Crabbe, Goyle, Nott, Greengrass, Greengrass and a few people whose names she couldn't remember. There were also a few third years, excited at the prospect of their first ever Hogsmeade trip, but no Malfoy. At the Ravenclaw table she saw Luna Lovegood, Terry Boot, Anthony Goldstein, Padma Patil and Michael Corner, one of Ginny's many ex's. At the Hufflepuff table she saw Hannah Abbot, Susan Bones, Ernie Macmillan and Justin Finch-Fletchley. Finally was her own table, other than the third years and various fourth, fifth and sixth years, there was no one there yet from her year.
She grabbed her copy of Advanced Potion-Making and started to read. She was probably the only person in the school you could find who enjoyed reading her textbooks. She read them in her spare time. Hermione didn't even know how many times she'd read Hogwarts: A History, but she knew that it was a lot. She really enjoyed Potions, not as much as Arithmancy, of course, but it was definitely one of her top classes. It was a bit like muggle cooking really, just a lot more dangerous. You measured out ingredients, put them in a cauldron and mixed: just like cooking. She turned to page eight and started to read, the Elixir to Induce Euphoria was a sunshine-yellow potion that gave a sense of extreme happiness to the drinker.
Hermione really wanted to try and make that potion; she vowed to herself that if Snape ever gave them free reign to make whatever potion they chose, that would be the one for her. She wasn't depressed or anything, she'd just never made the potion before and she really wanted to try it.
"GOOD MORNING, HERMIONE!" shouted Ron as he sat down and helped himself to some flapjacks. He piled them onto his plate in no time flat; they were gone in even less. That boy could eat like Crabbe and Goyle when he wanted to, Hermione didn't know where all that food went on his lean figure; he was like a human trashcan, just devouring everything.
"Morning, guys, Ginny," she replied as she took a bite of her hash browns and flipped the page of her book. Her focus returned to the pages and she started to read about the Draught of Living Death on page ten.
Hermione's attention was diverted from her book to her friends who seemed to be in a heated argument.
"Gin," said an exasperated Ron with food stuffed in his mouth, "You're not going to be a professional quidditch player!"
"I've seen her fly Ron, she flies really well, you know that," Harry spoke up, "We are all on the team together after all."
"Pray tell why you don't think I could ever go professional?" hissed Ginny, very angry; she didn't think she could get angrier at the moment…
"You're a girl!" Ron exclaimed... and then Ron had to go open his mouth and make her see red.
Hermione, just sitting there quietly staring at her friends, decided to join the conversation. She furrowed her eyebrows and spoke up. "What's your point?"
Ron just didn't seem to understand that the more he spoke, the deeper he dug that hole, Harry realized it, but being the amazing best friend that he was, decided not to speak, this was Ron's problem. Hermione and Ginny glared at him with an expression of such fury, that it would have made even Lucius Malfoy cringe. "Yes, Ronald, care to explain why my being a female is a problem?"
"W-well…" he stuttered, "I-it's just t-that, most teams are made up mainly of blokes."
"What is your point," Ginny spat.
"Are girls not good enough for professional sports in your opinion?" Hermione continued the conversation.
Harry took a sip of his pumpkin juice and smiled as he watched the girls gang up on Ron. Just another typical morning.
"You're saying there are no female players?" said Ginny as she stabbed her piece of sausage savagely with her fork. She popped it into her mouth and chewed. Then she spoke again, "Glynnis Griffiths, Gwendolyn Morgan, Gwenog Jones, Wilda Griffiths, Valmai Morgan-" Ginny started to rapidly list the names of famous female Quidditch players.
"N-No!" Ron cried, "That's not it at all! I just mean that most teams consist of male players!"
"Just keep digging Ron," laughed Harry as he mimicked a shovel digging a hole. Ron opened his mouth again, then he did the first intelligent thing he'd ever donewith his mouth, he closed it. That didn't last long though,
"Okay Gin, I'm sorry, you are an absolutely brilliant quidditch player and I just don't want you to play because it's dangerous," he claimed.
"And it's not dangerous when I play chaser? Here at school? And need I remind you that I am the best chaser on the team?" she retorted.
"Well, I'm sorry! But as your older brother and the only one left at this school, like it or not, it is my job to care for you," Ron said stubbornly.
Hermione just knew that this argument was about to blow into something much bigger so she made a quick decision and stopped the fight before it could begin. Ginny hated how over-protective her brothers were. If she was dating someone, or even looked at them in a certain way, one of her brothers would send a letter to all the others, including Charlie who was in Romania and they would have a little talk with her at Christmas about the importance of staying away from nasty little boys.
"Alright then, we are done with our breakfasts, the day is beautiful, let's get going to Hogsmeade!" she said enthusiastically.
Ron, Harry, and Ginny just stared at her as if she'd grown two heads. She started to feel uncomfortable under their gaze,
"Okay then, be all sad and depressed," she muttered. That earned her a smile from Ginny who then proceeded to jump out of her seat and exclaim:
She marched down the aisle and a quick glance behind her told her that her friends were following her. She opened the doors leading out of the Great Hall and the quartet made their way to the entrance. They passed many students that were just waking up and making their way down the stairs. They'd be some of the first in Hogsmeade, which was always a good thing since you wouldn't have to wait in such long lines.
Filch was standing at the oak doors, checking off the names of students who had permission forms for Hogsmeade as they left. Filch took extra long probing his stick around Harry and company, that man had serious issues.
The four laughed, and talked, and made fun of Filch as they walked the lane towards Hogsmeade. They passed Hagrid as they walked and they shouted,
" 'Ello! Yer goin' ter 'ogsmeade I reckon?" he asked.
"Yup! What're you doing?" asked Hermione as she noticed that Hagrid had a bag full of plants slung over his shoulder.
"Snape asked me ter brin' 'im some things fer Potions. Don' know what fer o'course," he happily replied, "Well, off ye go! I got things ter do," he waved a final goodbye and then walked away.
"Oh, ingredients! I hope we get to make some really complex potions!" Hermione exclaimed.
"Only Hermione," muttered Ron as he shook his head.
The walk into Hogsmeade was very enjoyable. It was a bit chilly though and everyone tightly wrapped their scarves around their necks and lower faces. When they finally reached Hogsmeade they all sighed in relief as they sprouted off names of where they each wanted to go.
"Tomes and Scrolls, books!" Hermione shouted, obviously
"Honeydukes, chocolate!" yelled Harry.
"Zonkos and Honeydukes!" Ron cried
"Gladrags Wizardwear! I need new gloves!" screamed Ginny.
They started to argue about where they should go when Hermione, being the level-headed person that she was, took control of the situation.
"Alright, you guys! Let's base this on where we will spend most of our time. First we'll go to Ginny's store, then we will go to my store, followed by Ron's store and lastly, Harry's store, then we'll all slip into the Three Broomsticks for a quick pick me up Butterbeer. Sound good?"
"Yes mum," the other three confirmed, Hermione hit them all over the head.
They headed towards Gladrags and as soon as they entered Ginny squealed in delight.
"Oh, Hermione! We have to get our Yule Ball dresses!" she exclaimed.
"Gin! Calm down," Hermione chuckled at her friend who was obviously excited seeing as she ran towards the dress racks. Ron and Harry just groaned knowing they should have never gone in a clothing store with Ginny.
"Oh my Merlin. Look at this one! Hermione! I want a silver or pink one! Nothing red, clashes with my hair and all, but you could wear red! No wait, too Gryffindor, I GOT IT! Hermione you're wearing green! Emerald green to be precise! Oh that's my best color, but I'll let you wear it just this once! This is so exciting, Hermione check th-"
Hermione cut out Ginny's ramblings while she spared a glance at the dresses that she didn't want to spend today looking at. Especially since Ron and Harry were here and she knew how much they hated looking at women's clothing.
"Gin, as Head Girl I guess I should inform you that at the beginning of December we have another Hogsmeade trip reserved for Yule ball shopping. Madam Malkin's and Twilfitt and Tatting's will be here too," Hermione said.
"Really?" Ginny squealed.
"Who are you guy's going with?" asked Ron, joining the conversation.
"Oh, nobody…yet," said Ginny as innocently as she could. Hermione knew that she wanted to go with Blaise but that wouldn't happen unless he asked her first. Until he did, there was no reason to get Ron all worked up. Ron narrowed his eyes on his little sister prepared to ask her what she meant by that when Harry swooped in and saved the day, just like he did best.
"Ron, who are you going with?"
"Oh, um… nobody, there's nobody I want to go with... yeah... heheh," Ron nervously replied. Ginny picked up on this and started to question him.
"Ronald Weasley, who is she?" she demanded while picking up a pair of sapphire blue mittens.
"Uh, who's who?" he replied looking anywhere but the occupants of the room.
"You know what I'm asking, you like someone, who is she?" she asked as she tossed the gloves and picked up a pair of purple ones.
"I don't like anyone!" he replied, looking at the ground.
"Well, she's not in Gryffindor because you wouldn't be so nervous about that, she's not in Ravenclaw because you don't even talk to anyone in that house, it's not a Hufflepuff because all the female sixth years in that house are dating someone. That leaves Slytherin," she continued acting like he hadn't spoken.
"Eep," Ron squeaked, which proved to Harry and Hermione that Ginny was right.
"Not Millicent Bulstrode obviously. Not Tracey Davis, she's dating Seamus Finnigan. Daphne Greengrass is dating Theodore Nott, so not her. That leaves one person," it dawned on Ginny. Ron knew where she was going with this, and he could not, for the love of Merlin, he could not let her say her name.
"HARRY WANTS TO TAKE LUNA!" he yelled. Hermione and Ginny swiveled to stare at Harry, they never knew he had a thing for Luna.
"Thanks, Ron," Harry grumbled.
"Harry James Potter," scolded Hermione, "why didn't you tell us that you like Luna?"
"It…slipped my mind," he claimed.
"Oh right, I'm sure," snorted Ginny, "have you asked her yet?"
"No… not yet," he answered
"Well what are you waiting for? Ask her before someone else does!" Hermione insisted.
Ron had an expression of relief on his face, he was happy that the spotlight was off of him, for now.
Ginny paid for her gloves, beautiful emerald green mittens and the quartet left the clothing store. Harry and Ron sighed and took deep breaths of the fresh air as though they'd been stuck in the store for days not minutes. They made their way to Tomes and Scrolls and as soon as they stepped across the threshold, Hermione took deep breaths of the air that smelt musky with a hint of yellowing pages of stories growing old. The smell of books full of knowledge was in the air, it smelt like a forest full of old trees where it was peaceful and there was no evil. Well, at least that's how Hermione would describe it; Ron, Harry, and Ginny described the smell of the bookstore as something old. Hermione always felt at home in a bookstore, or even just anywhere where books surrounded her. There was something calming to her about having books full of history and interesting facts around her. Hermione scoured the store looking for new books that she didn't already own. As she did this, the other three went over to the books of quidditch, the only books that could possibly interest them. They turned the pages of Quidditch teams of Britain and England while discussing who would win the league championship this year. Ron was rooting for the Chudley Cannons, of course. Ginny was all for the Holyhead Harpies, the only all female quidditch team in the league, and Harry was partial to Puddlemere United, but that was only because his former captain, Oliver Wood, played as reserve keeper for them.
Hermione picked up a copy of Rune Dictionary and added it to her small pile of books. She decided to get her Christmas present shopping done while she was there and thoughtfully picked out books for her friends. She got The Beaters' Bible and Beating the Bludgers- A study of defensive strategies in Quidditch for Fred and George. She got Ron a limited edition copy of Flying with the Cannons. Men Who Love Dragons Too Much was for Hagrid, Hermione hoped he'd use it to curb his slightly unhealthy obsession with the beasts. Cooking the Muggle Way for Mrs. Weasley. My life as a muggle for Mr. Weasley. Flesh-Eating trees of the world for Neville. Powers You Never Knew You Had and What to Do with them Now You've Wised Up was for Harry, call it ironic, but it was a good book for him. Luna was a tricky one, she believed in all sorts of strange things and Hermione didn't know what to get her. She doubted there were books about nargles so she picked a random book and got her E. Nesbit's Fairy Tales. That left Ginny; Hermione didn't know what to get her so she decided to just get her present in December so that she'd have more time to think about it. Hermione went to pay for her books, a total of 9 galleons 15 sickles and 9 knuts. She shrunk her purchases and put them in her pockets so that they would not attract the attention of her friends.
She walked over to the Quidditch books where she knew they would be and told them she was finished. Ron looked shocked as he blurted, "But, where are your books? You usually buy loads!
Hermione just stared amusedly at him, "It's called the Diminuendo charm Ron."
"Right, I knew that, I was just testing you," he nodded.
They walked into Zonkos and Ron started to look at the different practical jokes. Hermione didn't care much for this store, she didn't have time for things of such insignificance. As Head Girl, it was her job to make sure that students did not exploit the objects they bought from here, so you can understand if she didn't particularly like them much with all the trouble they caused. They were nothing like the items from Fred and George's store, but they were still a nuisance. Ron and Harry each bought some sugar quills and Hiccough sweets that they wanted to use on somebody and then they left for Honeydukes. Honeydukes was the store that they all wanted to go to - everybody loved candy after all.
Acid Pops, Bertie Bott's Every Flavor Beans, Blood-flavored lollipops, Chocoballs, Chocolate Frogs, Cockroach Clusters, Droobles Best Blowing Gum, Exploding bonbons, Fizzing Whizzbees, Fudge Flies, Ice Mice, Jelly Slugs, Liquorice Wands, Pepper Imps, Peppermint Toad, Shock-o-Choc, Spindle's Lick'O'Rish Spiders, Sugar Quills, Toothflossing Stringmints, Crystallised pineapple, Toffees, Pink Coconut Ice, Creamy chunks of nougat, it was bliss. Hermione had dentists for parents, so she seldom had a chance to eat any type of sweet. Going to Honeydukes were such a reward for her, she got to binge out on all the sweets she wanted and her parents were none the wiser.
The four friends stayed in that store for nearly an hour, other students came and left but the four were still in there. They all wanted a bit of everything so they eventually decided that they would split everything that they bought with each other when they got back to the school and were in the comforts of their common room. With that decided, they paid for their purchases and left.
"Well, now that we're done with our personal shopping, who's up for the Three Broomsticks?" asked Harry.
"Yeah!" the others hastily agreed, it was getting a bit chilly.
They marched towards the popular establishment. They opened the door and saw a lot of students there. Guess everyone was awake now, maybe they shouldn't have spent so much time in Honeydukes. They passed Neville who was sitting with Luna and Colin, when Luna waved hello to Harry, he blushed and almost tripped over his feet, headfirst into Goyle. That would have been pretty awkward. They found a table near the back that was near a window and they sat themselves down. Harry volunteered to go get the Butterbeer and the others waited patiently for him to return. After about ten minutes he came back and sat their Butterbeers down in front of them.
"Sorry it took so long, there was a lineup," he apologized.
"That's alright, Harry," assured Hermione as she took a sip of the delicious beverage.
They all smiled and laughed as they talked about Professor Snape. He wasn't as much of an overgrown bat anymore… but still. He didn't take points from Gryffindor needlessly anymore, he was almost fair. This was probably because he was no longer being watched by the children of deatheaters who could have told their precious lord about him. He even awarded Hermione points every now and then. The first time he had done so, the entire room was shocked into silence, Professor Snape, giving the smartest student at Hogwarts well-deserved points? It just wasn't heard of. What was even crazier was when he took points off of Blaise for being ten minutes late to class. Granted, he would have done it to any of the Gryffindors, but he had never taken points from his own house before. Thank Merlin for the house of Slytherin that Crabbe and Goyle were not in advanced-potions, imagine the points they would get deducted, their house would be in the negatives! Snape had changed, he no longer had greasy hair, it was always combed usually pulled back in a ponytail. He also wore color often; no longer did he always wear the black robes that everyone was used to seeing, even if it was only wore dark greens and blues, it was still color! He was all in all, a much better person to be around. The only thing he'd never changed about himself was the fact that he never took points from Draco Malfoy. Malfoy could be as late as he wanted to class, Snape would merely glance at him before continuing the lesson. Guess it had its perks to be the godson of the Potions Master. Speaking of Malfoy…
Draco walked past the Three Broomsticks with Pansy and Blaise. They'd just spent two hours looking at clothes for Pansy and a wand-holster for Blaise. All Draco wanted to do now was take a break from all the walking. Pansy was chattering away with Blaise, while Draco amused himself with his thoughts. They walked into the pub and Draco scoured the place with his eyes. Gotcha, he thought as he saw Granger laughing with her friends at a table near the wall. The three Slytherins walked towards Madam Rosmerta and ordered their Butterbeers. Draco maneuvered his way through the crowds before arriving at a table directly behind the Gryffindorks. He sat across from Blaise and Pansy in a way that when he looked past Pansy's head, he could see Hermione clearly.
He ignored his friends' conversation as he looked at her. She looked up as she felt someone staring at her and she met the eyes of Draco. She dropped her head quickly as if she was afraid his gaze would burn her. He furrowed his eyebrows at her. She'd been avoiding him all week, and it was very obvious to him. She was the last to arrive in class and always made sure that Pothead or Weaslebee saved her a seat, she also never left without the two of them because he knew that she knew he didn't want to approach her while she was with her friends. She was always long gone by the time he woke in the mornings and he never noticed her come in either which led him to believe that either she came at a very late time, or she didn't come at all. If she saw him walking down the same corridor as her, she mumbled an excuse to whomever she was with and darted away in the other direction. It was really starting to bother him because all he wanted to do was apologize to her for calling her that word, but she was making it obscenely difficult. But no longer, tomorrow he would have his say, and she would listen, and he knew just the way to do it…
SOO, that was a long chapter wasn't it? Please review to let me know what you think and if there's something you think the story is missing. Thanks for reading!
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