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Ranny by loopyluna
Chapter 18 : Mother Hulda
 
Rating: MatureChapter Reviews: 20


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Mother Hulda
Olivia Peckham





 

Upon waking up the next morning, a flowery scent wafted around me. I yawned and began to sit up, fighting against the urge to close my eyes tight. A colourful bouquet of flowers was placed on the bedside table between mine and Marilyn’s bed. A tiny card was attached to a red gerbera.

 

I kicked back the duvet and snuck a peak. The other girls would have already left; the light was shining through the open curtains on the Saturday mid-morning. My bare feet padded against the stone as I stood up.

 

With a stretch in the air, I felt my mid-riff uncover for a moment. I relaxed and snuck a peek at the card.

 

To, my beauty.

I hope your morning is sweet.

All my Love.

 

My nose involuntarily scrunched as I pulled on my dark denim shorts. I didn’t find it difficult to think of a person who admired Marilyn with romantic intentions, she was a very beautiful girl – it was the reason why she kept the flowers that confused me; she gets them frequently and she never keeps them.

 

I pushed my thumbs in to the ripped pockets of my shorts. I threw on my green jumper – a gift from Scorpius – and grabbed my ash fur boots in the door way. Pulling the door open, I hopped down the hallway, tugging the boots on to my feet.

 

As I entered the Common Room I fell in to the seat next to Jack and pulled my feet on to the cushion.

 

“I can see we made an effort today,” Jack mocked as I slouched forward, rubbing my eye with the back of my sleeve. “Stop pouting, with the addition of the birds nest on the top of your head, you look like a big baby.”

 

I picked up the pillow I was leaning on and whacked him in the face. “Perry,” I sighed. “Do you think I look like a big baby?”

 

But Perry just blinked, folding his arms over his chest he grinned a little. I had decided that if he became any more secretive I would have to do something about it, possibly setting the Prince’s Guard on to the boy. I could borrow them from Albus.

 

It took me a moment to notice that Jack was patting my head.

 

“What are you doing?” I asked as I narrowed my eyes.

 

His hands retracted almost immediately. “Sorry, it’s just usually it’s not as big as it is today, I was just … giving it a poke.”

 

I blinked. “Yeah, why not?” I settled with quietly. Taking a hair band off of my wrist and tying my hair in to a knot at the back of my head and pushed my fringe from my eyes. “What are we doing today?”

 

“We?” Jack questioned quietly. “What make you think we’re doing anything with you today? Me and Perry may be grabbing the guys and spending the day doing Quidditch Practise.”

 

“You did that last night,” I pointed out. “You never practise the morning after, and besides, you’re wearing your favourite jumper – you don’t train in that.”

 

He raised a brow. “How do you know what I train in?”

 

“I don’t watch you if that’s what you’re trying to imply!” I replied grouchily. “I just meant that you don’t want to get it muddy!”

 

“Alright!” He surrendered. “Calm down, Miss Grumpy Pants.”

 

I folded my arms across my chest and allowed Perry to pull me up from the couch. “Come on,” he said quietly. “You can play with the Bludgers while we get changed.”

 

“You’re really doing Quidditch Practise?!” I whined.

 

He nodded. “Our temporary Captain’s a knob.”

 

“Oi, I resent that!” Jack cried, jumping up from the couch. “I book it like this because none of the other teams do – bloody Gryffindors had the evening slot, it was the only one left. It’s not like you mind Perry, you just like practising, it doesn’t matter to you when! “

 

Perry and I shared a knowing look. He guided me towards the main door of the Common Room and down the corridor. Their original Captian had taken a fall almost a month ago, and had been in the hospital wing ever since. She had appointed Jack as the temporary Captain until she’s better – and he’s milking it for all it’s worth.

 

I listened carefully to Jack’s enraged rant towards his friend as we left the Hufflepuff’s area of the castle.

 

“It has never mattered to you! And since when do you let small little girls play with Bludgers-“

 

I had come to the conclusion that Jack was having a bad day when we reached the Changing Rooms. He continued ranting as he went through the doors, leaving me and Perry stood in the corridor. The door shut behind him, but his muffled voice didn’t stop.

 

I stifled a laugh. “I’ll be in the stands.”

 

“Not too far up,” he said hoarsely. “That way when I try to run from Jack, I won’t have far to go to safety.”

 

He winked as I blushed. Biting the inside of my cheek I resumed down the corridor towards the pitch as he went through the door to the male changing rooms. Each member of the team has a locked area where they keep their clean uniforms and equipment. Al and Scorpius used to train in the middle of the night when in their fourth year; their old captain was a villain. I would sometimes go with them, and hide out in the changing rooms when it got too cold.

 

The Quidditch Pitch was almost empty, the dark winter morning made it an odd temperature for the boys to practise in, but I doubt it would faze any of them for a moment. The odd student sat in the stands, pairs and threes dotted around in the oddest of areas. It was as if they were waiting for the king, preparing for a joust. It was the perfect arena.

 

I walked across at a normal pace, my boots sinking in to the damp earth a little as I went. The pitch always seemed so big, so ominous when you stood in the middle. Albus always spoke of how it could make the biggest of people feel so small – it was what kept his ego in check.

 

I climbed the first four benches, sitting back and pulling my legs up to my chest. The cold air bit against my skin, pinching my thighs – the ripped edges of my shorts brushing against my skin in the wind. I gave up trying to tame my hair by the time the lads ran out of the changing rooms.

 

Darren was first, followed by two of his roommates. They had obviously been there a while. The carried out the equipment box and pulled open the lid, brooms in their hands they each reached for their belongings.

 

For a while they threw the Quaffle between them, not dropping nor flinching as the wind speed picked up. I screwed up my small hands in to bawled fists and tried to bury them in a mass of material around my stomach. I wish that Jack had told me of the temperature. The snow had melted, having only had a brief visit from Jack Frost this year – yet the bitter cold was still lingering. I had not been outside in days. I only had myself to blame.

 

The rest of the team ran out shortly, Jack locking the doors as he left. I watched as he tucked the keys in to his pocket and jogged out to meet his team members. There was another from their year, a boy who I had seen speaking with Perry’s multiple times, yet I couldn’t place a name to the face.

 

Jack made them do drills, running up and down the stairs to the stands multiple times before running around the pitch. None of them stopped to catch a breath, not for a second. The Slytherins complained, constantly, each one of them finding faults in every detail of the practise – the Puffies just got on with it.

 

“Bloody hell,” I muttered, biting down on to my lip and trying to ignore the reddening that I knew was colouring my cheeks.

 

Perry dropped a few feet from the air before regaining balance and flying back up to the hoops. I watched, intrigued, as Jack flew towards him and pointed to the ground. They bickered. Perry shouting for what was possibly the first time in his life. But he gave up in the end and flew to the grass.

 

He threw his broom down on to the ground with a force and marched through the mud. After grabbing his jumper from the bottom stand he ran up the rest of them, pulling it over his head. Behind him, the team re-formed, practising plays without the Keeper. It appeared to be a speed drill.

 

I didn’t move as Perry sat down on the bench below, leaning his head back on to the wood beneath me. My legs were pulled up to my chest as I hugged them tightly, my feet partially crossed over the other. He sighed loudly.

 

“You do that a lot you know,” I pointed out. “Lean your head back and close your eyes. I would imagine that it calms you.”

 

Perry didn’t open one eye and smile as he used to. He simply stayed still. His arms were crossed over his chest, his bruised eye tarnished with the healing colour of yellow.

 

Another gust of wind blew my hair in to further knots. “Your eye looks better Perry.”

 

But still he said nothing.

 

It was no secret amongst the Hufflepuff Team that Jack turned in to a demon while acting the role of Captain. It didn’t matter whether you were a friend or a stranger, if you didn’t do it his way, it became the highway. He wasn’t one of the seven dwarfs anymore, he was simply THE dwarf. Jack became the captain of his own ship of which he led to victory. It didn’t matter if you were in the way.

 

“I’m sure that Jack had a good reason for sending you off.” I said quietly. “I know he can be rash, but he usually has a reason behind it.”

 

“He thinks I’m losing it,” Perry replied in a deep tone. It was hard to hear over the wind; I leaned forward. “He thinks that I’m losing my touch. I can’t be.”

 

I rested my head on to my knees. Perry wasn’t one to open up to a person and so I stayed quiet in vain and twisted hope that he would make an exception.

 

His dark hair was cut short, the ends being tossed around by the wind. “Even when I was little I was ruthless. It didn’t matter if I broke an arm or a leg, as long as I played well in the match. I would play with my brothers.”

 

“You have brothers?”

 

“Three of them,” he replied, casting his soft gaze towards me. His expression didn’t change from disbelief. But I knew that it wasn’t aimed towards me, even when his eyes turned hard once more. “I’m the youngest. They’re all loud; you can never get them to stop talking, even if you try. I learnt quickly to just … listen. You find out more about people sometimes than asking them a direct question.”

 

He pulled his hood up over his head in a hope to warm up his ears. “Each of my older brothers was a little different, one wanted to go in to wizard radio, the next politics and the last literature and history. But Quidditch was always my thing.”

 

Silence parted the two of us, teasing as the wind burst through the stands, howling louder than the spitting rain.

 

“It still is.” I countered. “It always will be.”

 

Slowly he shook his head. “I need to stop getting hurt. It’s throwing me off of my game. The pathetic thing is that I don’t know if I can. It’s the only way that I’ve ever known how to play.”

 

Jack’s call could be heard from the sky as he raced against what I thought was Darren. He pushed the team faster and faster, forcing them to dive in unnatural ways.

 

“He’s good, Jack,” Perry acknowledged. “He knows what he’s doing, and he’d never intentionally hurt the team. But I can’t handle it when he threatens taking me off of it.”

 

“He what?!”

 

“Jack doesn’t mean it, I don’t think he’d ever go through with it,” Perry admitted pointedly, his cheeks reddening from the callous whip of the wind. “But he says it when I do something that gets me hurt, or I do something stupid.”

 

My brows furrowed. “Stupid, like what? I saw it then, when you sort of dropped in the sky. What was that?”

 

“Captain Dearest thinks it’s a reaction from being hit in the face with a bludger, but I’m just tired. I stayed up last night, just sat around. I went for a walk around the castle too. I just couldn’t sleep. But Jack won’t hear that, and even if he did…”

 

He trailed off. I let him. More calls from the Captain echoed around the stadium, certain crowd members leaving due to the dropping temperature, but new ones arriving.

 

“Maybe if I spoke to him,” I began.

 

But Perry shook his head. “No thank you. I couldn’t ask you to do that.”

 

He stood up and turned around to face me.

 

I followed him with my gaze as he watched me quizzically. “What are you doing?” I asked.

 

“I thought I may as well pick up my broom, beg for forgiveness.” He tried in his deep , soft tone.

 

“Wait!” I pleaded momentarily, reaching out and grasping hold of the waistband of his bottoms.

 

He turned mechanically and raised a brow.

 

“Can I ask you something?”

 

“Sure.” I knew the next bit, the bit he wouldn’t say. I’m not guaranteeing an answer.

 

For a moment I tugged on the ends of my shorts and rubbed my cold fingers against my bare reddening legs. “That fight, a while ago, between Jack and Tom, when Thomas had his brother in a headloack and such, what was it about.”

 

If anything Perry smirked, for a moment he stood still, looking back to the Quidditch Pitch, I knew that he had considered running away from the situation. “Just, girls and stuff. Albus and Jack were teasing Tom and he took it to heart.”

 

“Why?” I asked. “Tom doesn’t usually get like that.”

 

“Not with you,” he said solemnly. “With the lads, or people that he doesn’t like, he’s a little more abrasive. With Jack he’s just, the average brother; they fight all the time. You just caught them at a bad moment, Ran. I’m sure that you could figure it out if you thought about it hard enough. ”

 

I watched as he twisted the ring on his little finger. I recalled that it belonged to his father, the silver band was a symbolism of the relationship they had, either a close one, or none at all. I waited for him to elaborate; he didn’t.

 

“Are you going to go back and practise?” I asked, a little hopeful that he would stay and keep me company instead.

 

He nodded a little. “You look cold.”

 

“I would imagine that’s because I am. I wish I’d put proper trousers on.”

 

His laugh was quiet and short, but I caught it. “I don’t think that Darren would be enjoying practise today as much, if you did. Besides, it’s warmer if you keep moving.”

 

“Just one more reason for wanting to fly once more.”

 

“You read me like a book,” he teased. Perry pulled off his jumper, pulling the arms inside out before rectifying the mistake. The grey lining was darker than the outer colour, the emblem dancing on the chest, supporting a well-known wizarding sports shop. He held it out to me. “It’s no pair of trousers, but it’s yours if you want it.”

 

I grabbed it without a second thought, pulling it down over my head and tightening the hood around my face.

 

Perry didn’t wait for my thank you, merely jogging back down the stands after saying. “Don’t wait for me after practise, and tell Jack not to either; I’ve got something to do.”

 

He stood half way but only for a moment, before racing back for his broom.

 

It wasn’t until a while later that I realised why. Sat in the eastern stands was Marilyn. Her friends cheered on the practise, Nina and Rose sat either side of her, watching as the players made their way to the ground and traded in their brooms for the workout of press ups and jogging.

But her eyes were fixed on me. And it wasn’t a friendly glare.

 








 

I clenched my hands in my pockets and smiled gently as a group of younger students made their way in to the Three Broomsticks. It had been three hours and Scorpius was yet to wink at a passing girl. We walked carefully down the slope towards the shrieking shack.

 

“Even from 60 feet away I can still see the holes in the curtains,” Scorpius grumbled. “Mother would have an absolute fit.”

 

Nodding I grinned. “I could see that. But it’s practically a historical monument, I’m sure that the Ministry wouldn’t allow your mother to waltz in with new curtains and redecorate the place.”

 

“You’ve met the woman; she can be pretty persuasive.” He replied haughtily. “She got father to marry her after all.”

 

“That’s just harsh.”

 

“And the truth,” he tried.

 

Scorpius twisted his wand through his fingers as we trekked. The snow had fallen, resting once more on the cold, cobbled ground.

 

Together, with Albus, we hadn’t had much time to spend together as a three, instead we relied on meeting up today, the day if the Hogsmeade trip. Albus had found himself a date, a pretty girl in the year below. She was sweet, with big round eyes the size of snitches. Her name is Olivia and her voice is endearingly kind.

 

Astonishingly, I was alright with it. When Albus told me the other morning, I thought that it would hurt, but it didn’t. I felt fine, happy for him, even.

 

I had spent the first few hours of the trip in Zonko’s, picking up supplies from a list that Al had given me, along with a few objects that Jack had asked me to pick up. Scorpius had gone to lunch with his parents and then to the film shop in the lanes of the town. It was run by an old squib who develops both magical and muggle film – depending on what you asked for. He and Scorpius were on a first name basis.

 

He held the film carefully in his grip, folded within a parchment package, wrapped and tied with a bow of string.

 

“Are you going to show me the photographs or am I going to have to wrestle them from you?” I questioned cheekily as we climbed up a few feet and took a seat on the top of the wooden fence.

 

Scorpius handed me the package. “They’re nice shots, some of them. There is one of you and Albus, I’m not sure when it was taken, but it’s pretty cool.”

 

“Nice,” I nodded. “How did the shots we took by the lake turn out?”

 

“They’re not so good, I thought that the lighting was a little too dark when we were taking them; it turns out I was right.” He sussed, pushing a little mound of snow from the top of the wood. “There is one thing that I’m not too sure of though … I was wondering if you could answer my queries for me.”

 

I pouted a little in thought. “I will if I can.”

 

“When you borrowed the camera back in October time, I would think, when Perry got out of the Pansy Wing, did you happen to have any night time escapades with King Arthur?”

 

“Yeah,” I said with a nod. “He was let out of the Hospital Wing late in the evening, we sat and talked. It was the first time he spoke to me. How come?”

 

A teasing smile twitched at his lips. He took the package back, undone the string and pulled at the paper. After flipping through the photo’s for a moment, he handed me a picture.

 

It was dark, almost black and white, a wash of colour lightly staining the skin tone of his face. It was the picture I took on that night. The first I found was a mistake, the picture of the approaching figure; the flash had blinded him momentarily.

 

Putting that one to the back, I realised why Scorpius had asked such an odd question. The black and white photograph was muggle, it was an image as still as stone, yet spoke so much more than any moving portrait could explain.

 

Perry’s chiselled jaw was clenched, his dark eyes looking forward as I took the photo from an angle closer to behind him. It was raw looking, an essence of artistic power allured from the capture, almost posed looking, the way his shoulders arched forward as he leant upon his forearms.

 

The next image was similar; another I had forced him to succumb to as he dragged his hands down his face. He was tired that night, aching having only woken up hours before from being knocked out for weeks. His eye was a shade of black and purple, yellow blending throughout the right side, I remembered. In the black and white of the shot, it seemed so much more. The darkness of the shots made him look dangerous.

 

Grinning I handed the photo’s back to Scorpius. “Can I look at the rest later please?”

 

“Only if you tell me what you were doing with the poor bloke.” Scorpius replied. “He looks in pain; I never thought that I would see a lad as tough as Perry James in such agony.”

 

“He wasn’t in pain,” I defended, feeling a little deflated. “It was the day he had woken up from having been hit in the match against you. He was really tired. I didn’t do anything to him.”

 

“I bet you spoke,” he grumbled. “If you talk enough it’s enough to put anyone through pain.”

 

Reaching over I shoved him from the fence. He fell the few feet to the snow covered floor as I jumped down after him. I simply picked up the photos’ from the ground and walked away. It took him only moments to catch up.

 

He brushed snow from his shoulder, the white substance drifting off his jacket with a similar consistency to playground sand. “I’m teasing Ran. The shots you took are fucking brilliant. They are once in a life time pictures those ones.”

 

“Perry was angry,” I recalled. “His mother had told him she doesn’t want him playing Quidditch anymore, he was frustrated.”

 

Scorpius hitched one leg over the small fence, reaching back to help me over the step. I jumped and landed lightly, hanging on to the slate wall for support. I clenched my fists in my gloves and waited for him to make over. He laughed to himself for a moment.

 

“At least we know that, if he’s forced to give up Quidditch, he can always be a model.”

 

I couldn’t hide my snort in time; instead it erupted from within me and turned in to a light hearted laugh of disbelief. “Oh yes, Perry seems like the model type.”

 

“I’m just saying, Circe.” Scorpius rounded pulling me in to a hug. “Speak of the devil.”

 

I span around in his arms and followed the point of his finger as his arm rested on my shoulder. Through the falling snow, pushed in any direction the howling wind suddenly wanted to take it, Perry was still easily visible.

 

He towered over the girl he was with, as he did with most. His hair was dishevelled and covered with a black beanie. The fading bruise was hardly noticeable over the distance. But this wasn’t what I noticed first. It was his lips that caught my attention; they were attached to hers.

 

My eyes widened and I felt the need to ask. “Is that Perry?”

 

“It appears so,” Scorpius replied wrapping his arm around my front. He noticed my reluctance to move. “Ran?”

 

“But its Perry,” I noted in dismay. “He doesn’t do things like this; he’s kind.”

 

“He’s dark, Ran. He’s a bad seed underneath the layers of generosity.” Scorpius told me, lifting me under his arm and marching down the snow covered street. “Coming from me, that’s saying something.”

 

I fought against him and pushed myself away. “It takes a ‘bad seed’ to know one.”

 

“Don’t be like that, love.” He simply dismissed. “I was simply stating a fact. I know how close you and Perry are, I just don’t want you getting hurt.”

 

“You don’t want me getting hurt.” I echoed. “Scorpius most of the upset I have gone through this year is down to you and Al.”

 

“But not recently,” he snapped. “We’re trying our best Ran, we’re boys. Me and Albus both adore you. You’re the closest thing either of us is ever going to get to love. You have to bear with us sometimes.” He twisted his wand through his fingers. “I don’t know what’s been going on between you and Al lately, but you act like you’re over him. Perry isn’t as careful as Al was around you. I admit that he didn’t try as hard as he could. But Perry James could really hurt you.”

 

I shook my head. “Perry wouldn’t do that.”

 

“What if he didn’t know he was doing it?” he questioned. “Look at the situation; he stood right in front of us snogging the senses out of Marilyn Chace!”

 

My hands seemed to clam up, heat rising though my body; closing my throat as it rushed to my head. I let out an ironic laugh. It was short, a spit, a sneer. “No. No, he wouldn’t do that, not with Maleficent. He finds her repulsive.”

 

“Ran, did you not see?”

 

“Of course I saw! It’s bloody obvious! They’re practically mating by the fountain!” I squealed, stamping my feet as I made a sound almost inaudible to the human ear.

 

It was then that I saw Al. He took hold of my arms and pulled me in to a big hug. I may no longer suffer from butterflies, but his hugs still made me feel warm. His ability to express adoration for those he cares for is astounding. He could cover up the betrayal I felt in a moment by smothering it with love.

 

He held my shoulders to stop me from jittering. “What’s wrong, love?”

 

“Perry.” I mumbled.

 

Al’s eyebrows knitted together. “What’s the bastard done?”

 

“You like Perry,” I deadpanned. “Don’t change sides because I’m on the opposite one.”

 

“I’m not picking sides. You’re getting yourself worked up over Perry James.” He pondered for a moment before looking over to Scorpius. “Why couldn’t she just date Jack – I can scare the crap out of that kid.” Al made eye contact with me and whined, “Why do you insist on fancying people stronger than me?”

 

Scorpius made an interruptive cough. “Ranny, could you please become a lesbian? It would quite honestly take a load off of my mind.”

 

“No.”

 

“I’m not really following, I’m sorry.” A kind voice interrupted.  

 

A tall blonde girl stood awkwardly to Al’s right, her hair curled in to perfect corkscrews. Her eyes were big and blue, her teeth a shining white. I realised this must be Olivia.

 

Albus turned and dragged her forward in to our tiff. “Our Ranny here wants to make babies with Perry James, but he’s – hang on what exactly has he done?”

 

“Babies?!” I echoed.

 

“It’s more of a question of who has he done,” Scorpius rounded knowingly, ignoring me, before introducing himself to Olivia. She simply smiled and gave her name. She didn’t seem flustered in the slightest; an unusual feat for a girl of her age meeting the heir to the Malfoy fortune.

 

“She goes by the name of Marilyn but unfortunately has the personality of a dementor.” I grumbled. When Perry said he had something to do after practise, I didn’t think he meant literally ‘do’.

 

Scorpius laughed. “She just sucks the life out of her victims with her kiss!” he chimed, before attempted to make a ridiculous impression of his words. But it made me smile and I think that was his aim.

 

Olivia nodded slightly, her mouth falling open in recognition. “Marilyn Chace? The Hufflepuff? Oh Circe, she’s evil.” Her coral lips turned to a slight grin. “I could … casually shove her in to the fountain over there if you want me to. I could make it look like an accident.”

 

“Or not?” Albus offered with a somewhat temperamental look. “Or, while she does that, I could hit James with one or two unforgivable curses.”

 

I tried to hide my smile. I honestly did; the humour of the situation was more overbearing than my self-control. I settled for pushing my hair up out of my face and letting the twisted ends knot together in their self-sacrificing dryness.

 

“As lovely as those offers are, I think I’m going to have to pass on them.” I said politely, my voice returning to its normal pitch and tone. “Hi, I’m Ranny. I don’t know you too well, but already I really, really like you.”

 

I saw Scorpius from the corner shaking his head. "You might be coming on a little too strong there, Ran."
 

Olivia shook her head and took my friendly hug, returning it happily. We walked away from the two boys a little. “Can I just completely ruin the moment and congratulate you on your choice of men?”

 

I barely heard her quiet voice through the muffling of my scarf. “Al and Scorp are two rather lovable guys,” I agreed.

 

“And James, and the Gates brothers … and Dom.” She listed lightly. “They’re all lovely, in their own ways.”

 

“They all have their downsides too.” I replied. After waiting for a moment for the boys to delve in to conversation until I knew they would be deaf to anything we said, I turned back to Olivia. “How did you know that I am friends with them?”

 

A light blush took over her cheeks. “Oh, I have liked Albus for a while now. He sits with you in the Great Hall and that’s your group. Circe, please don’t tell him that; I don’t want to be the creepy girlfriend.”

 

“It will be our little secret,” I assured, wrapped my pinky around hers. “But I will let you know that compared to some of the things that they do, that’s nothing. Dominic fancied this girl about a month ago; he made Tom and Scorpius hide behind tapestries with him for a week watching her so he could ‘figure her out’.”

 

“That’s a little weird.”

 

I nodded in agreement. “He’s harmless really. Tom can be a little violent, but his heart’s a good as gold.”

 

“Is it true that Jack Gates can talk for England?”

 

“Oh yes,” I sighed, leading her back towards the main town. The two boys followed on behind. “He has the biggest mouth I have ever seen.” I kept to myself how I felt about the size of his eyes.

 

She smiled softly. “You’re lucky you know. My roommates always talk about you; never in a bad light either.”

 

My mouth retracted any words it was about to say, instead sounding out the letters of a word. “But I’m a loser.”

 

“What?” she breathed. “Ranny, people admire you. You walk around with Scorpius Malfoy and get away with calling him names from fairy tales, do you know how many people would kill to be in your position?”

 

“Why?” I questioned, “Because he’s handsome, because he has money? There is more to Scorpius than that.”

 

“I didn’t mean it negatively,” she rectified quickly. “I just meant that … well; he’s not exactly the most approachable of people, or inviting to a stranger. But when he’s with you he seems different, more … human, if that makes sense. You see the good in people; your patience is that of a saint. People are mean to you because they feel threatened by you; you see things in them that they don’t know about.”

 

I let out a small laugh. “I’m not exactly a deep person, Olivia. I just like stories.”

 

“And that’s what makes you, you.” She said kindly. “I was actually wondering if I could ask you a favour. Albus said that you like fairy tales. My mother used to read me and my sisters a story before we went to sleep. One was a fairy tale called ‘Mother Hulda’, at least I think that was its name. She would read it to teach me and my sister not to be lazy.”

 

“Mother Hulda,” I tried to recall. “Is it where the girl pricks her finger and drops the spindle down the well?”

 

Olivia nodded eagerly. “Yes! Yes that’s the one. I would love to learn it off by heart. But we don’t have the book any more that he used to read it from, I was wondering-“

 

“I think I have it,” I interrupted. “It’s from the Brothers Grimm though, the more gruesome of the fairy tales, the originals. I have a copy, but I think that Scorpius has it; he prefers the bloodier stories – shock I know. I will get it back for you.”

 

“You, Ranny Baker, are a Princess!” she thanked. “Now, point me in the direction of Marilyn I think that if I run by fast enough she won’t see my face as I give her a shove.”

 

Albus’ sigh was loud enough for us to hear. “Livvy, when I wanted you to meet my friends I thought it would be them who would be hard to control.”

 








 

AN; there it was, the next chapter! Sorry for the slightly longer update than normal, life has decided to become hectic!
What did you all think about Olivia? She is honestly one of my personal favourites, but don’t let that affect your decisions! :)
And Perry? What about his actions?!
There are four chapters left of this story! Any predictions of what may happen? I can’t wait to post them!


The next chapter is called ‘Lancelot’, who do you think is the said knight? :) Thank you for reading!
Oh, and as ususal, if you’d be a kind enough as to leave me a little review, ROBIN for ‘yes, I quite enjoyed this’,  or HOOK for ‘just give up, seriously, go home’. 



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