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Chapter 2 : Insensitive Boys and Emotional Girls
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Oh, for the love of Merlin. If there’s one thing that Oliver does not need, it’s another bloody ego boost.
Have I already mentioned that I’m going to kill Chloe? Let me correct that statement. I’m going to brutally murder her.
But back to reality. Since Oliver's still standing here with that ridiculous smirk on his face, I do what I do best.
I kick him in the leg.
“Oi! Stop doing that, woman! You have serious issues! Serious issues!”
“What do you want, Oliver?”
“Hmm...” He leans further against the wall and goes into his ‘Thinking Pose,’ cocking his head to the side and gazing past me blankly. I’ve seen Oliver strike this pose many times before, especially during History of Magic. I’ve always believed him to be looking at an imaginary Quidditch pitch with little players zooming around.
“What do I want from you...” he trails off, still staring behind me. Suddenly something clicks in his brain (I imagine that one of his Chasers has just scored a goal) and he pops back into reality.
“I was just going to make you try out for the team, but now that you’ve gone and said all those things about me... I’m sure that FrednGeorge will be very interested to find out who you think is fit -”
“Get to the point!”
“Right. My point is that - thanks to you - this information just became infinitely more valuable. I haven’t decided on what I want yet, but I assure you, more will be coming.”
I roll my eyes and make a motion to walk around him. “Fine. Whatever.”
“But really - you think I’m quite fit?”
“OW! BLOODY HELL, LEX!”
“FOR THE LOVE OF WRONSKI, STOP KICKING ME!”
I pull my leg back for another kick - it really serves the git right -
“I swear to Godric, Lexi, if you kick me again -”
“LEXI COVINGTON SNOGGED OL- mpmph!” I clasp my hand over his mouth and drag him back into a broom closet.
“Shut it,” I whisper frantically.
“Mvaphy ifth yhew wouf stoph kwickin mwe -” he complains from beneath my hand.
“Do you ever stop talking?” I hiss furiously.
There are footsteps advancing down the corridor outside of our closet.
“Did you hear that?” Voice Number One asks.
“Yeah. Someone yelled about Lexi Covington and snogging,” says Voice Number Two.
Frick! It’s Noel!
“Lexi? She’s that brunette Gryffindor Prefect, yeah?” inquires Voice Number One.
Who is that? The voice is so familiar...
“Yeah. Sixth year. Likes to kick people,” Noel says.
Oliver snickers from underneath my hand and I elbow him in the gut with my free arm.
No, Noel! I’m not violent! Well, maybe just a little, but you can change me, I plead with him silently.
“I’d snog her,” says Voice Number One.
Double frick! I’ve just realised who it is. It’s that complete arsehole Danny Kershaw. And he bloody well knows who I am! Well, he better, seeing as I hooked up with him last year and totally snogged the life out of him. Boy, was that a mistake. Treated me like dirt and now he has the gall to act like he doesn’t even know who I am.
I should really kick him for that.
Okay, I may have a slight problem.
Noel’s talking again. “Yeah, I guess I’d snog her if I got the chance. Pretty fit bird, I’d say.”
Oh, Noel! A grin lights up my face and I feel little winged Snitches take flight in the pit of my stomach. Noel Hemsley wants to snog me!
“Definitely. Should be easy, too. I’ve heard she’s quite a slag,” Danny replies.
That git! I’m going to fricking kill him. If anyone in this situation is a slag, it’s him. Man-whore.
Their footsteps recede down the corridor and I release Oliver from my death grip.
“Bleh!” he exclaims, wiping his mouth with the back of his hand. “Was that necessary?”
“Clearly, since you can’t keep your bloody mouth shut,” I growl.
Since I have set Oliver free, he starts wiggling around and it becomes painfully obvious why broom closets are not used for the abduction of muscular Quidditch captains. My back is rammed against the door, he’s standing with one foot haphazardly in a bucket, and our bodies are pressed uncomfortably close together. There’s barely any room in here, and Oliver keeps fidgeting. Fidgeting, I tell you!
“What are you doing?” I ask him irritably.
“I’m trying to - oof! - open the damn door,” he mumbles.
His hand disappears behind me, grabbing awkwardly onto the door latch, and before I have time to shout, “No!”, he pushes open the door. I go reeling backwards into the hallway, my body no longer supported by the door. Oliver comes toppling out shortly after, landing directly on top of me. The bucket around his foot is catapulted by his momentum up into the air and clangs loudly against the stone wall across the hallway.
“Ouch,” I groan.
“What was that?”
“Did you hear that?”
“Sounds like it came from over here.”
Whispering first year voices are making their way towards us from somewhere around the bend in the corridor. This is not good. First years always travel in packs - where there’s one of ‘em there’s always bound to be twenty more. And sure enough, a herd of first years comes wandering around the corner and stops short at the sight of the very - ahem - compromising position that Oliver and I are in. Hmm. This is awkward.
“This is not what it looks like!” I yell, attempting to push Oliver off of me (which, by the way, does not work).
The first years look like a bunch of Hippogriffs caught in the headlights. Their eyes are open wide in shock, their feet frozen mid-stride.
“What is going on here?” a strict voice says from the back of the herd.
Frick it all! Frick it all to hell!
Professor McGonagall pushes her way briskly to the front of the herd and gasps in disapproval as her eyes land upon the pair of us and the open closet. “Wood! Covington! Dare I even ask why you two...”
“I swear, Professor! Nothing is going on!” I squeak, still trying to shove Oliver off of me, which is not going very well. Apparently, Oliver has been frozen along with the first years and is unable to move his dead-weight body.
“Mister Wood!” McGonagall shrieks. “Please, remove your body from on top of Miss Covington’s!”
He still makes no motion. Maybe I unconsciously Petrificus Totalused him. We have been working on wandless magic in Defence... But then again, our teacher is Gilderoy Lockhart and I’m fairly certain that he has no clue what the bloody hell he’s talking about.
“Oi! Oliver! Move your bloody arse right now, you wanker, or I swear to Godric I’m going to -”
“Miss Covington! Language! Please!”
My ‘language’ has apparently gotten through to some part of Oliver’s Quidditch-addled brain, as he sits up, unpinning me, and gazes around.
“What?” he says defensively. “What’d I do?”
I swear, he’s had one too may Bludgers to the head.
“Wood,” McGonagall says, shaking her head. “Just - just - never again.”
“Why do you assume this was my fault?” Oliver demands. “It’s always the bloke, isn’t it, Professor? Oh, no, a female could never do anything to shame the Gryffindor house. And certainly not perfect little Lexi. It’s not like she would ever lock me in a closet and cover my mouth -”
“Wood! There are first years present!”
I seriously wish I had a Beaters’ bat right now. I need to bash my head in with something.
“But Professor! She pushed me into the closet!”
“Wood! Enough details!”
Oliver is digging us into a very, very deep grave. Send out the funeral notices. I’ll need to get Lee to preside over the ceremonies. FrednGeorge can provide the Firewhisky for drowning out the sorrows of Oliver’s mourning fan girls. Merlin, I’ve got a lot of planning to do and very little time to do it.
“No, Professor, it wasn’t like that!” Oliver exclaims, finally catching on to McGonagall’s insinuations. “It was just - in the heat of the moment -”
Oh, boy. How can one person possibly be so thick-headed?
“OLIVER! SHUT THE BLOODY HELL UP!” I scream.
I hear a snigger in my right ear. I turn to face the direction of said snigger and find myself staring at - for the love of Merlin, could this be any worse - Ron Weasley. As in Ron ‘FrednGeorge’s little brother’ Weasley.
Just go ahead and bloody kill me now.
I’ll go quietly, I swear.
McGonagall shakes her head in disapproval. “Put the bucket back, shut the closet, then just go, Wood. Just go.”
Oliver obliges, thank Godric. I think I’m suffering from Oliver Overload™. And yes, it is a real thing. Just go ahead and ask anyone on the Gryffindor Quidditch team. Symptoms include rising blood pressure, grinding teeth, and an overwhelming urge to throttle.
I pull myself off of the floor, anxiously looking at McG. Yes, that is my nickname for her. Yes, I have nicknames for many people, including my professors. No, she does not like it. (By the way: If you ever do accidently call her that, don’t yell out ‘For the love of Merlin, even McG could catch more Quaffles than you, you bloody bint!’ during a Quidditch match. Not a good idea.)
“Miss Covington! You are a Prefect! This is not acceptable behaviour!”
“Yes, ma’am,” I mumble, looking at my feet.
I’m not even going to bother to try and explain. I think Ollie boy gave her a bad enough picture already. I’m not sure if kidnapping ranks above or below a closet snogging session on the Inappropriateness Scale, but I am sure that I don’t want to find out.
McGonagall looks out of her depth, so she simply shakes her head disapprovingly again and mutters, “Two more years,” under her breath before walking away.
“Scat! Get outta here!” I yell at the first years. “Me! Prefect! You! First years! Go!”
The first years mobilise their herd and flee from my maniacal waving hands. I can’t even imagine what I look like right now. I guess it would be some sort of cross between a murderous house-elf and a mountain troll.
“Wow, very attractive, Lexi.”
“Hey, Noel,” I say as seductively as a murderous-house-elf-mountain-troll hybrid can.
“So, what have you been up to in the twenty minutes since I last saw you?” he asks, striding up next to me.
“Er - you know, raising hell, permanently scarring first years, destroying Hogwarts. The usual,” I say nonchalantly, when what I really want to say is, “Eavesdropping on you in a closet and fighting the urge to jump out and snog you senseless, boy!”
I don’t think that would go over well.
He chuckles. “Oh, yes, quite the rabble rouser, aren’t you, Lex?” He ruffles my hair and lets his arm fall around my shoulder.
HE’S TOUCHING ME!!!! EEEEEEKKKK!!!!!!
Okay. Sorry. Fan girl moment over.
“Where are you headed?” he asks, making small talk as we work our way down the corridor together.
Oh! How adorable is he, making small talk and stuff...
“Gryffindor common room. You?”
“Ravenclaw common room.”
Golly gee, I love the way he says “Ravenclaw.” And “common room.” And “Lexi.” And “you are the most beautiful creature to walk this planet and I will love you forever.”
Okay, so maybe he hasn’t said that last bit yet, but he will! I swear it! I mean, look at us - we’re practically engaged.
“Erm, Lex? Are you okay? Hello in there. Earth to Lexi,” he says waving a hand in front of my face.
“We’re at the Fat Lady’s portrait.”
Dammit! Why does Hogwarts have to be so bleeding small?
“Right. Er - bye then, Noel.”
“Yeah. See you,” he says, removing his arm from around me and walking away.
Gah. I’m pathetic.
“Password?” asks the Fat Lady.
“Horklump juice,” I mutter dejectedly.
I miss him already.
The Fat Lady swings open her portrait and I clamber into the common room. Everybody is exactly where I left them. Exactly.
I snag my spot between Justin and Andrew again, leaning heavily on Justin’s shoulder.
“Lex, I wouldn’t do that if I were you,” Fred says from in front of the fireplace.
“Yeah, Ollie might get jealous,” adds George. “Didn’t you two just have a little tête-á-tête in a closet?”
“SNOG FEST!” FrednGeorge yell.
“OI! SHUT YOUR DAMN MOUTHS!”
Oliver, of course, finds this very amusing and is practically falling out of his chair with laughter. In fact, everyone else seems to find it entertaining as well. Merlin, why do I hang out with these people?
“Ollie and Lexi, sitting in a closet, k-i-s-s-i-n-g -”
“Silencio,” I say as calmly as I can, jabbing my wand at FrednGeorge.
Regardless of my silencing skills, FrednGeorge continue to move their mouths open and shut like gaping fish. What twats.
“Damn, Lex. You’ve really perfected that, haven’t you?” Andrew comments with awe.
“What can I say? It’s an art,” I respond, twirling my wand between my fingers.
“It’s not that impressive, Andrew!” Chloe snaps, glaring at me.
Jeez, get a life, would you, Chloe? I don’t mean to sound rude but he’s just not that into you. Me ‘distracting’ him really isn’t going to make that much of a difference.
“What’s got your wand in a twist, Chloe?” Andrew inquires, turning back to her. “You’ve been in such a mood lately.”
“I have not been in a mood!”
“Yeah, you have. And you know what? I’m getting pretty bloody sick of it,” he says, pushing her legs off of his lap and scooching closer to me.
Oh, Andrew. You poor, poor thing.
“BLOODY SICK OF IT? BLOODY SICK OF IT? WELL YOU KNOW WHAT, I’M PRETTY BLOODY SICK OF YOU!” Chloe screams before flying up to our dormitory in tears.
“What the hell?” Andrew looks extremely confused.
In fact, our whole group looks confused, furrowing their brows and gazing at the stairs to the girls’ dormitory. Of course they would be. They are boys, after all.
Boys are so insensitive.
Andrew shakes his head, completely oblivious. “Merlin, I don’t understand her. Girls are so complicated.”
“Yeah. And hysterical.” Justin adds.
“And over-emotional,” Oliver comments.
“Oi! Girl!” I yell, pointing at myself.
Andrew grins sheepishly. “Sorry, Lex. I forget that you’re a girl sometimes.”
He did not just say that.
“Run, Andrew, run!” Oliver advises frantically.
“No - I didn’t -” Andrew blurts out in a panic before swinging himself over the back of the couch.
“Sorry, gotta go, Lex. Cheers!” he says, sprinting at full speed out of the common room.
Oliver stretches up from his spot on the floor and plops down into Andrew’s vacated seat. “Well, at least Charlie Weasley knows you’re a girl, right Lex? At least I hope he does...”’
I smack him on the arm and stomp off to my dormitory for the second time that day.
When I reach the sixth year girls’ dorm, I gingerly push open the door and immediately regret leaving the common room. Chloe is sobbing into her pillow, splayed out across her bed. Please don’t think badly of me. Normally I would comfort a friend in need. But Chloe, well, she’s not the easiest to soothe. Have you ever heard a Merperson above water? Yeah? Well imagine that, only three times as loud.
“Er - Chloe?” I say softly.
She glances up from her pillow, eyes puffy and red.
“You all right?”
More tears start to roll down her face.
“Andrew didn’t mean it. You know how he is.”
Chloe bursts back into sobs and flings herself back onto the pillow.
“He’s not worth it.”
The wailing grows even louder.
“He’s just a boy, Clo!”
The incessant noise stops. Ah, sweet silence. She lifts up her head slowly, eyes even puffier and redder than before.
“JUST A BOY? JUST A BOY? YOU WOULD SAY THAT, WOULDN’T YOU, CONSIDERING THE FACT THAT HE’S FRICKING IN LOVE WITH YOU!”
Merlin, what have I done? Seriously, if I’m not deaf before I’m seventeen, it will be a major accomplishment.
“Chloe, Andrew is not in love with me. You know what he just told me? He doesn’t even remember that I’m a girl half the time.”
Chloe rubs her eyes with the backs of her palms and sniffles slightly. This is a good sign.
“OF COURSE HE KNOWS YOU’RE A GIRL! EVERY GUY IN SCHOOL IS WELL AWARE OF THE FACT THAT YOU, LEXI COVINGTON, ARE A GIRL!”
“What’s that supposed to mean?” I ask defensively, ready for the attack. This is the part where she transforms from a Mermaid-above-water into a bitchy Veela. And trust me, there is nothing worse than a bitchy Veela.
“IT MEANS THAT EVERY GUY HERE WANTS TO SHAG YOU!” she screams patronisingly.
“That is untrue and you know it!” I shoot back.
Not my best comeback.
“OH, PLEASE. LIKE YOU DON’T NOTICE.”
“I don’t, because it’s not true!” I protest.
Really, it’s not. At least I think it’s not.
“COME ON, LEX. EVEN YOU’RE NOT THAT NAIVE!”
“You know what? Andrew was right. You are in a mood. And even if he does ‘know that I’m a girl’ as you say, that doesn’t mean that he’s in love with me.”
“FINE! MAYBE HE’S NOT. BUT DON’T TELL ME THAT YOU DON’T NOTICE HIM CHECKING OUT YOUR ARSE EVERY FIVE SECONDS!”
I fling myself onto my bed, tired of playing these games with her, and bury my head into my pillow. I’ve found that it makes quite an effective ear plug.
“Lex?” Chloe whispers after a few minutes of silence.
“I didn’t mean it.”
“I’m a terrible friend.”
I laugh, then push myself up into a sitting position. “I’m only kidding, Chloe. You’re one of my best friends, and no matter how bitchy you get at times, that will never change.”
I can’t quite tell, but I think she smiles at that.
“So does Andrew really check out my arse every five seconds?” I inquire.
What? These are important things to know.
“Please, Lex. You must have noticed.”
Chloe pushes herself upright as well, staring at me incredulously. “Seriously? Wow, you really are that oblivious.”
“Yup. I’m as clueless as they come.”
“Tomorrow, try walking away from him, but turn around quickly after a few seconds like you’ve got something else to say and see where his eyes are,” she giggles.
“Hmm. I’ll have to try that...”
“And it’s not just him,” Chloe says.
“Oh, Merlin, not again, Chloe,” I complain. “The entire male population of Hogwarts does not want to shag me.”
“Okay, not all of them. And I don’t think that Andrew wants to shag you. How weird would that be? But he’s definitely very aware of the fact that you, love, are a girl of the fit variety. And Justin and Oliver are aware of that as well,” she giggles.
I roll my eyes. “So basically, you’re saying that our entire group consistently checks me out.”
“Men,” I scoff.
“Pigs,” she agrees.
“Why do we hang out with them?”
“‘Cause they carry our books to class for us.”
“Oh, yeah,” I nod. That is a perk of associating with the boys. Although they may be super-annoying and (apparently) pigs, we do have them whipped. I guess I now know why...
“And because I’m in like with Andrew,” Chloe continues dreamily.
“Remind me why you fancy him again? I mean, he does stare at my arse.”
“Point. Maybe I need to switch my affections to someone else...” she muses.
“You know, you don’t always have to be ‘in like’ with someone,” I comment.
She ignores me. “Justin? Nah, he’s like my brother. And I’d never get anywhere with Oliver, he’s too in love with you...”
“Not you too,” I groan, throwing my pillow at her.
“What? It’s so obvious. And I have it on good authority.”
“What authority? FrednGeorge?”
“You do know that they only say that to irritate me, right?” I demand.
“That’s what I used to believe, but now I think they might be onto something,” she says.
“Okay, we’re both royally screwed up. Can we go to sleep now?” I ask.
“Sure,” she mumbles. “But I really do think that -”
I don’t hear the rest of what she says, as my eyes are closed and I’m drifting off into wonderland.
A sharp rapping sound wakes me from my slumber. I open my eyes groggily and glance around our dormitory for the culprit. No one appears to be making the noise: Trinity is curled up into a ball on top of her four poster, Nina’s head is resting on a copy of Gilderoy Lockhart’s Voyages with Vampires, and Chloe has disappeared somewhere under her sheets.
The rap comes again, and I locate the source of the sound. Someone is tapping at our window. I swing myself unwillingly out of bed, cross the dormitory, and shove our window open softly.
“Morning, Lex,” Oliver says brightly.
“Oliver! It’s the crack of dawn!”
“Funny, Harry said the same thing when I woke him up.”
“Why were you waking up Harry? No, better yet, why are you waking up me?”
“‘Cause. We’ve got Quidditch practice,” he says, grinning.
“Quidditch practice! Are you insane? I haven’t even tried out for the team yet!”
His grin widens. “Sure you have. When you took your five penalty shots.”
“That didn’t count!” I protest.
“I’m the captain, and I say it was your tryout.”
“Oi! Lex! Who’s at the window?” Trinity yawns.
“No one,” I hiss back.
“Hey!” Oliver yelps. “Offensive!”
“Shut it!” I whisper furiously.
Too late. Nina and Chloe have woken up as well.
“What’s going on?” Chloe murmurs weakly.
“I think there’s someone at the window,” Nina says.
“Can I come in?” Oliver asks.
“No!” I say bluntly, shutting the window.
“Who’s that?” Nina questions.
“Oliver being a git. Go back to sleep,” I command, heading back over to my bed and snuggling under my covers.
“Oliver?” Chloe sits bolt upright, grinning like a madwomen. She scrambles out of bed and rushes over to the window, throwing it open. “Come in, Oliver!”
“Chloe! Don’t you dare,” I snarl in what I hope is quite a menacing fashion.
Chloe lets Oliver climb through the window, dragging his Nimbus 2000 behind him.
Apparently I was not menacing enough.
“Where’s Lexi?” he asks simply.
Trinity and Nina giggle, pointing to my bed.
He strides across the room, throws back my covers, and scoops me up.
“Let go, you bint!” I yell, pounding him on the chest.
“I can’t. We’ve got Quidditch.”
Chloe is positively glowing with delight. I’m sure this is contributing greatly to her ‘Oliver loves Lexi’ theory.
“And you wonder why - FOR THE LOVE OF MERLIN, PUT ME DOWN, YOU CRAZY NUTTER!”
Oliver has made his way back to the window and is standing on the ledge outside of our dormitory. As in the ledge that is fifty metres up Gryffindor Tower.
“You know, Lex, this could have been so much easier if you would have just co-operated in the first place,” he teases.
“Oliver, if you put me on that broom, I swear to Godric -”
“Shut the window, Chloe,” Oliver says.
“Chloe, don’t,” I beg.
“Sorry, Lex. I have to. I’m gambling on your future happiness,” she says smugly, shutting the window in my face.
I hate her. I bloody hate her.
A/N: Thoughts? How are the characters coming along? Hopefully not too terribly cliché.
I’m addicted to reviews, so spoil me, please!
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