Disclaimer: Anything recognizable belongs to JK Rowling.
So, the night of the Quidditch tryouts, Rose finally pulled me aside and asked me what had happened to my hair.
"What do you mean, what did I do to my hair?" I asked, feigning ignorance.
"You cut it!" She exclaimed. "It’s shorter than my brother’s hair! Shorter than John’s! Shorter than Scorp’s!"
"Calm down Rose, it was only a couple of inches." I said, trying not to roll my eyes. "It will grow back fast anyways."
"A couple of inches!" Her eyes were huge now, and her eyebrows were disappearing into her bangs. "More like a meter! If not more!" She thought for a second, then her eyes narrowed. "You did this for quidditch, didn’t you. That was you on the Hufflepuff team!" Now she was torn between being amazed and frustrated.
"Maybe." I said vaguely. "You’re a clever girl, Rose. I’ll give you that. But it was worth it just so you know." I smiled as she fell back onto her bed, frustrated with something.
I went down to the common room, where I saw Lizzie watching John and Scorp playing Wizard’s chess while still talking about Quidditch.
"Where’s Rose?" Asked Scorp.
"She’s frustrated with me." I answered.
"What did you do?" John asked, scowling as Scorp took out one of his knights.
"Oh, it was nothing really." I said. "She’s just confused I think."
"Hmmm. So do you want to play the winner?" Scorp asked.
"Yeah, sure. But I’ll feel sorry for them." I admitted.
"And why is that?" Lizzie asked, looking up from a book she had just begun to read.
"Because I am going to whip their King’s sorry bottom." I said truthfully. (Okay, I was partially joking, but it was still true.)
"Well, we’ll see about that." Scoffed Scorp. "Checkmate."
I did beat Scorp’s arse that game. It lasted about fifteen minutes before I had him cornered.
I also beat John. Then Lizzie. John and Lizzie were going against each other when it was time for dinner. We ate quickly, then went back up to the common room for a round of Exploding Snap. I was awesome at this too, so I ended up teaching them some muggle card games too, like Texas Hold’ Em, Black Jack, and my personal favorite, Bullshit.
"Bullshit!" I shouted. "You’re lying! Take all the cards!" John groaned and reluctantly took the pile of cards that included the two threes that he had said were sevens.
There was a reason that I was so beast at card games. Living as part of Greyback’s gang of wolves was basically living on the road. We would drive, swim, or walk and take trains, planes and buses on our treks all over Europe. That was the reason I knew four or five languages. We would spend a lot of time on the road, or sitting out in hotels when we weren’t being raised like an army or hunting in the woods. This left a lot of time to learn poker, chess, mancala, scrabble, you name it, we probably played it. Once in a while, we would go see a film at the cinema by sneaking in through back entrances in small, cheap little theaters. That’s where I got the name Anastasia. When I was about four, Felipa took me to see Anastasia somewhere in France in a theater that was going out of buissness. She actually paid for our tickets with some money she had found on the street the day before. I don’t remember much about the actual movie except that the main girl, the lost princess, was named Anastasia.
"All right, I’m going to bed." Said Lizzie. "This is ridiculous."
I rolled my eyes. "Okay, see you later."
"I might head up to bed soon too." Added Rose, yawning. "I’m dead tired, and I have a ton of homework to do tomorrow."
"Well, goodnight then." I said as she started up the steps to the dormitory. "Hey, I’m hungry. Is there a way that we could sneak down to the kitchens?" I asked once she left.
Scorp looked towards John. "What do you say John, fancy a trip down to the kitchens?"
John grinned. "Hell, yeah. Let’s go."
We snuck through the corridors, until we reached a portrait of some fruit. John went and tickled the pear, and bada-bing, bada-boom, the door opened to my surprise.
"That was weird." I commented as we stepped into the huge kitchen where house elves immediately came up to us offering us various amounts of food. I smiled. "Brilliant."
We took a seat at one of the long tables that resembled the ones in the Great Hall. I think we were sitting at the Gryffindor table, as it was the one that was usually empty upstairs. It was also the only one without platters and goblets set out on it.
"Would miss like some cream for those strawberries?" One of the little elves squeaked.
"Ugh. Call me Anna please. None of this 'miss' stuff." I said, shuddering. "And yes, I would like some cream please." I added as an afterthought.
The elve smiled at me. "Of course miss! Oh, I mean Anna." She ran off in search of some cream.
"Hey! I would have liked some too!" John said indignantly. Scorpius cocked an eyebrow.
"So, you don't like being called 'miss'." He mused.
"Nope. Feels weird." I admitted. "Plus, it's not right that they have to serve me like that. I know they like it, but that doesn't mean they have to bow down to me or anything. It's ridiculous and demeaning for them."
"Wow." John said, clapping. "You sound like Rose's mum."
I was rolling my eyes when the house elf returned with a huge tub of whipped cream.
"Thank you." I said before she scuttled off.
"Wow, she likes you." John said, pulling the tub towards him, assuming that I would be welcome to sharing.
"Hey!" I said indignantly. "Hand that back! It's my cream." I pulled it back, scooping a spoon into the creamy stuff as John tried to steal it out from under me again. I went with instinct this time, and flicked my hand at him, the cream smacking the middle of his forehead. Scorp laughed.
John then proceded to strike me back, digging his hand into the tub and thowing some at my face. I dodged it, but was hit smack on the nose by Scorp, who had decided to join in.
"You didn't just do that Scorp!" I said, royally pissed.
"You bet I did." He smirked, provoking me.
I threw a huge blob of the stuff, hitting him right on target between his eyes. I laughed, but was assulted again by John, leading me to stuff a bunch of the stuff down the back of his shirt.
We kept up the fight for another ten minutes, each of us thuroughly creamed and laughing. John had been the one to discover that I was ticklish and had tortured me by grabbing me and tickling my stomach until I shouted bloody murder and het let me down, shoving whipped cream in my face. We were laughing and chucking stuff across the room in battle mode when the door opened, revealing Slughorn coming for a midnight snack. He took one look at the three of us and smiled.
"Detention for you three Monday at eight." He said, tutting. "Now, off to bed. All of you."
And that was how I earned my very first detention.
The next morning, my hair had grown out to several inches above my shoulder, too short to put into a ponytail, but I just pushed it back with a thick, stretchy, gray fabric headband.
Rose gave a start when she saw me come out of the bathroom around midday.
"Your hair!" She yelled. "But yesterday- you- it grew!"
I rolled my eyes. "Told you it grew fast." I pulled on a sweatshirt and my favorite pair of sweatpants, intent on going to the library to do my homework. I know, very studious of me.
"Hey Anna, nice haircut." Lizzie said, coming back from the library.
"Thanks." I grinned, heading out of the tower towards the library.
Once at the library, I found John and Scorpius sitting at a table together, attempting to do their Divination homework.
"Hey guys." I said. They greeted me without looking at me, concentrated on the star charts we had been assigned to use.
"You guys figure out any of that stuff yet?" I too, was taking Divination, much to my frustration. It was such an easy subject, predicting the future, yet Professor Trewlawney had a knack for making it a bunch of shit. She was old, Professor Trewlawney, and starting to go a bit bonkers in the head.
In fact, to prove a point, she practically yelled at me when I first entered the room.
"Oh, my dear! You have been blessed with a gift of sight! Yet, oh you poor soul, your days are numbered! I see death in your future." She said boisterously, making me question her prerequisites as well as her general sanity.
She had gone on to predict my death many times in the next few weeks.
"No, we figured we would just make stuff up. But now that you're here, you can help us! This is your best subject so far, besides maybe Defense." John said looking up for the first time. "Hey you cut your hair."
"Yeah, it was getting long, and I cut it for Qudditch tryouts." I said without really thinking about it, rooting around my backpack for my Divination stuff.
"Quidditch tryouts?" John asked. "Why would you have to cut your hair for Quidditch tryouts?" He sounded perplexed. I winced.
"Um, well, I sort of tried out for Hufflepuff." I explained.
"You tried out? How?" Scorp asked confused. "I thought the captains wouldn't give you a spot."
"Well, I cut my hair and tried out as a... well, a bloke." I explained.
"You did what?!" John shouted. Immediately all the students looked towards us and Madame Pince shushed us. Honestly, isn't that woman ready to die yet? I don't mean to be insensitive, but honest to goodness she's old.
"Look, keep it down and don't tell anyone else. Got it?" I stared them down, implying punishment for either one of them shall they decide to betray my secret. "I plan on telling them I'm a girl eventually, but it was the only way I could get a spot, and I have to prove myself before I tell them.
"But don't you think Aaron will notice when you either show up to practice with long hair, or when you show up to meals with short hair? I mean, I can see that your hair grows fast, but can it grow that fast?" Scorp asked, confused. "I mean, do you really plan on cutting your hair every practice, and then letting it grow back during the night?"
"Well, that was the general plan..." I said hesitantly. Scorp seemed frusturated. John just laughed.
"Good luck with that." He chuckled. "Now, can you help us with Divination? We'll help you with Transfiguration and Charms."
That night was the first night of the cycle. I had known that it was coming, so I was plenty prepared. I had wolfsbane potion from the ministry, and had left a note on my bed saying, "Gone for a walk, don't look for me. -Anna" should anyone notice me missing. I left right after dinner, at sunset, telling John and Scorp that I had something I had to do, and that I would see them tomarrow.
I waited until all the students had cleared the Entrance Hall before slipping out the door outside. I skirted around the walls and crept past Hagrid's house towards the Forbidden Forest. I walked for about an hour, finding a good, abandoned clearing trying to make sure it was far from any other creatures. I slipped off my backpack, letting it fall to the ground with a thump, then took my potion and waited for the moon to come out and the wolf inside me to be unleashed.
The transformation came after I had been waiting about twenty minutes. I could feel it, the efffects of the Wolfsbane potion letting me keep my consciousness during the excruciating pain. Once it was complete, I was completely aware of my surroundings. I could see that I was really deep in the forest, with the Black Lake far to my right. I made sure to memorize this spot, then took off at a run, letting the wind rip through my hair as I sped along through the forest at inhuman speeds, finding a nice place to just curl up and relax after several hours of running.
At the mere sight of dawn, I wandered back to my starting place, and tried to relax, understanding that I would have to change back in order to go back to school. I will tell you from personal experience that learning to change back into human form during the day was the hardest thing I have ever had to learn. It is extremely hard and painful. After a few minutes of agony, I began the travel back to the castle as a human, pulling my now just past shoulder length hair into a ponytail and picking the twigs and leaves out of my clothes. It took me about forty-five minutes, as I was walking pretty fast, to get to the edge of the forest.
That was when I heard the wimpering.
I could hear little moans of pain coming from about seventy yards ahead from where I was walking, and stumbled over there, to see what was in such pain. I nearly tripped over the little second year lying in the pitch of dirt and leaves. It was a girl with curly brown hair and scratch marks across her face. I told myself not to panic and assesed the damage.
The girl was badly hurt, with several bones possibly broken. It was not looking good. It had seemed like someone or something had attacked her, beating her up pretty badly, before just leaving her here. It was hard to tell how long she had been there, but she was on the verge of conciousness, with the threat that she might never wake up if she were to fall under darkness.
I untangled her from twigs and leaves, scooping her light body up in my arms. I practically ran up to the castle with her, only sneaking through the entrance hall so as not to draw attention to the frantic girl carrying the unconscious second year in her arms. I rushed up the steps and found the hospital wing quickly.
"Hello!? Anyone here?" I called, not seeing any nurse in the room. "Help!!" I yelled.
A stout woman, Mrs. Pomfrey i think, ran out of her office. Her face turned pale at the sight of the hurt little girl in my arms. "Oh my. What happened?" She asked, bustling forward to me.
"I found her at the edge of the forest." I explained, still frantic.
"Oh my. Will you set her down there dear?" She asked me, rushing to the girl's aid. "Would you mind fetching Headmi- Professor McGonagall dear?" She was already attending to the girl's wounds, cleaning them out. "Quickly, dear, quickly."
I ran out of the room through the corridors to Professor McGonagall's room, where she had class. It was my first class, actually, as I was several minutes late.
"Professor!" I shouted, bursting through the doors. "Madame Pomfrey needs you immediately!"
"Thank you Anna, I will go now, take your seat, we'll discuss your tardiness and disheveled appearance later on." She said brusquely, leaving the room quickly. I found my seat next to Arabella, who was staring at me like I was crazy. Oh, everyone was staring at me like I was crazy, and began whispering to each other fiercely.
"Anna, what the hell is going on?" John asked from in front of me with a bewildered expression on his face.
"A student's been attacked." I whispered, eyeing Arabella cautiously, not sure how much she should know. "I found her at the edge of the woods."
"What were you doing at the edge of the woods?" He asked confused.
"I had to talk to Hagrid about class stuff." I invented wildly.
"How come you're not wearing the uniform?" Arabella asked.
"Er, yeah, I was going to change, but I got distracted." I explained.
"You know you have a stick in your hair." She said. "And you have dirt on your face."
"Do I?" I asked sarcastically. "That's weird. I don't really care to be honest." I said truthfully, worrying about the little girl.
"How can you not care?" She seemed really confused for some reason.
"Do you have a problem?" I asked, not so politely.
"No." She said, crossing her arms and looking away. She obviously did. I rolled my eyes.
"What have I missed?" I asked John, who had been watching the exchange between me and Arabella.
"Nothing." He said. "We've only had class for about fifteen minutes. You did miss breakfeast though."
"Don't remind me." I said, my stomach growling at the thought. I was starving, not to mention dead tired, as I hadn't slept a wink last night. I rested my head on my cheek, closing my eyes.
"You look tired." He noted.
"Yeah, you look great too." I snapped back. "Now, if you don't mind, I'm going to take a nap, as I didn't sleep well last night."
He shrugged, turning around to talk to the bloke next to him. Next thing I knew, the bell to end the class was ringing. I had fallen asleep, and McGonagall had still not returned. I jumped up, and ran to the Hospital wing to check on the second year. Madame Pomfrey shooed me out right away, and I joined John and Scorp on the way to Care of Magical Creatures. Thankfully, John had already told Scorp what I said, so I didn't have to explain, and they only pestered me enough to check if the girl was alright.
"Yeah, I think she's okay, Pomfrey shooed me out though, so I'm not positive." I said, dejectedly. We were walking down the slope of the hill toward's Hagrid's house.
"Where did you find her exactly?" John asked, scanning the woods.
I looked for the spot, just beyond Hagrid's pumpkin patch down closer to the lake. I pointed it out, saying. "It's just there, about twenty yards past Hagrid's pumpkin patch, by that huge rock shaped like a giant boot."
They looked over there. "Yeah, I know where you mean." John responded. "This whole thing is pretty weird if you ask me."
"Yeah, seriously. If that student was actually attacked, which seems to be the case, There will be more people hurt before the school decides that they actually have an issue. Umbridge will completely disregard it as an accident, although we really haven't seen much of her lately. It's been weird. Fantastic, but all the same weird not seeing the little booger around." Scorp said, thinking out loud.
"Yeah, that sounds like what she did last time there was a serious threat to her school." John said.
"Which means that someone else is going to have to find and stop the attacker." I reasoned.
"Yeah, well, it all depends what the other professors do." Scorp added. "It's in their hands now."
A/N: Thanks for reading once again! Please review, and when you do, (Which you will because I'm asking you so nicely!) I have a couple of little questions for you: Would you like to see someone else's viewpoint in the future? If so, who's? Who do you think the attacker is? Anna's sorting is coming up: what do you think she'll be sorted as? Please let me know! Kudos to anyone who does!!
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