Chapter 4 : A Problem in Potions
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Hermione and I walked down to the Dungeons and saw the rest of the Slytherins gathered. Of course, there were less Gryffindors. Lavender Brown stood near Hermione as I stood next to Pansy. She didn’t mind me without my brother, but she despised when I was with Draco, who was standing in the back. She was so pretty; I didn’t know why Draco thought her of a pest. Her silky black hair made her look more like a Slytherin.
“Hi, Pansy. Taking care of my brother?”
“I always am,” she smiled and looked forward.
“Hello students. I am Professor Slughorn. I will be teaching you Advanced Potions this year.”
A creak in the door had made Slughorn turn. There was Harry and Ron. I sighed in frustration and glared at Ron. He shrugged at me and raced to the cupboard. Harry and him were fighting over something. I rolled my eyes.
“Now, who can identify these three potions?”
I could’ve raised my hand; it was an easy test. Instead, I watched Harry and Ron. Hermione, of course, raised her hand and answered. She had gotten to the third potion when I started to listen.
“Amortentia, it’s also known as the world’s most powerful love potion.”
I hadn’t noticed it, but most of the girls were getting closer to the potion that changed colors. My eyes narrowed in confusion and looked to the guys to my sides. They shrugged at me and sighed. Inside their heads they were probably thinking, Girls because that’s what I was thinking.
Class had gone on without me, but I finally moved when my brother tugged my arm. I looked at Draco as he led me to his cauldron. All of Slytherins parted from the Gryffindors, leaving me, the only Gryffindor in a sea of Slytherins. It wasn’t like we had to separate from each other, but they’re rival houses. I felt like the barrier between the two, the common ground.
“I need you over here,” Draco whispered.
“Oh Draco. You make me feel so needed,” I laughed at him.
He smiled, which was something I missed. Our family had gone through some tough stuff in the summer. I made sure I got any chance to make Draco look as if he was alive and not suffering. I put my hand on his shoulder. He took it and squeezed it. I noticed his tattoo and looked away. Draco wasn’t all that proud of becoming something he didn’t want to become.
“Ready to make… What are we making?”
“The Draught of Living Death. Get out your book, Tori.”
I took my bag and rummaged through it. Finally, I found it at the bottom of the bag. I turned through each page and saw it. I got the materials and set them down in front of my brother and I. I saw Pansy leave us and go over to other Slytherins.
“She hates me,” I muttered, which Draco heard.
“I know. Don’t you love it?”
“You’re horrible!” I said as I smacked him with my book.
“Can you just help me make the potion?”
“Since when are you interested in passing this potion just to get a smaller potion?”
He stayed silent and I nodded. I put the clues together and stayed silent. I took my knife and Draco moved farther from me. I made a small smile and tried to cut a bean. It moved out of my reach every time I tried to cut it. I looked over to my fellow Gryffindors, and they were also having a hard time. I was glad it wasn’t just me. Then, right then and there, I made a cut on my palm. Blood was getting everywhere. It started to drip on my robes and I got some gauze out of my bag.
“Ow,” I whispered. Draco took my hand and looked at it.
“Get Slughorn over here,” he said to Blaise. Blaise left.
“Draco, it’s fine. I have gauze right here. Draco, let go.”
“No, it’s a deep cut.” He squeezed a little too hard and the cut opened again. I gasped. “Sorry, Tori. Where is he?”
“Draco, just leave it be. I’ll go to Madam Pomfrey when class is over,” I said as I took his chin and turned it to me. That let him look into my eyes. He nodded and turned back to the cauldron.
“Is there something wrong?” Slughorn had finally arrived.
“Yeah there’s something wrong! My sister cut herself badly, and you were nowhere to be found.”
“Draco, calm down,” I said as I took his hand. I looked at Slughorn. “I’m fine, no thanks to you. I apologize for my brother, but you should’ve been here,” I said, my voice turning cold.
“I understand Miss Malfoy. Are you alright?”
“For now. Can you excuse me? I need to bandage my cut properly.”
I quickly ran out of the classroom, making all eyes turn to me. I walked up the spiral staircase and went to the hospital wing. Madam Pomfrey was healing a second year Hufflepuff when I walked in. I waited for her to be done, but it took a while because the kid’s leg was basically crooked out of the skin. She looked at me and didn’t see anything wrong with me. I raised my hand and she took it to examine it closer.
“Victoria! What happened?”
“I was in Potions trying to make the Draught of Living Death and I cut my hand trying to cut a bean. I thought I had the bean, but I cut too deep. I was hoping that you could help heal it.”
“Of course I can. When your godfather was here, I had to heal worse cuts and scars than this. But then again, this is a different situation. Let me get you something to bite on. It will sting when I pour a potion to disinfect the wound.”
“Thanks for everything Poppy. But I don’t think that I need it. I’ve suffered than some stinging,” I assured as I sat on a bed.
“Trust me, you will. This stuff can take metal off cars.” She stopped as I looked at her. “Don’t worry child, it won’t take your skin off. And Remus endured worse things too, but he also needed the rag to bite on. I’ve seen it all while the Marauders were here.”
I took the rag and put it in my mouth. I didn’t look when she poured the potion on my hand, but I could definitely feel it. I screamed so loud and bit on the rag, but it didn’t help at all. I looked at her with watery eyes. She tilted her head with a look on her face that said I told you so.
“What was that, pure acid?”
But if that wasn’t enough she actually said, “I told you so. Child, I need you to be very careful with this hand for the next three to four hours. If it reopens, you’re going to need some more of this and you don’t want that.”
“Oh and Victoria?”
I turned to her.
“When you write to Remus, and I know that you will, tell him that Poppy says hello,” she smiled.
“But of course.”
I left the hospital wing with a bandaged and stinging hand wound. When I went back to the Potions room, no one else was there. I analyzed the room and saw that the Liquid Luck was gone. I went back upstairs and went into the Great Hall for Lunch. I sat next to Harry, Ron, and Hermione who were all the way in the middle of the table. I pushed my bag onto the wooden surface and sighed. Ron looked at me and came a bit closer.
“What’s wrong Victoria? You rushed out of Potions faster than I would’ve.”
Harry looked at Ron, who was sitting next to him. Ron was acting as if Harry knew that we had known each other since first year. I put my hand on my face and the other on the table, where everyone could see. The three of them hovered over my hand and made a disgusting face.
“Thanks for all the pretty faces,” I said with my words dripping with sarcasm.
“I’m sorry, that must’ve hurt,” Hermione sighed.
“I need to go to the Owlery tonight. I’m writing to Fred, George, and Remus,” I bit my tongue once again. “I mean…Professor Lupin. Hermione, would you like to come with me?”
“I could go,” Harry interrupted before Hermione could even speak.
Hermione had a look on her face. She wanted him to come with me. I looked at her and Harry. I nodded slightly. I avoided eye contact from Harry for the rest of time being. I ran to my free period, which I spent mostly in the library. I walked pass bookcases and bookcases before I chose a spot and stayed there. I took out my journal and started to draw. After a few minutes, I was almost done. It was another drawing of the moon, but it wasn’t full, which was what I usually drew. I picked up the book and raised it to eye level. Someone then took it out of my hands and held it up to their face so I couldn’t see them. I pulled the book down and I saw my boyfriend, red hair and all.
“Hello, gorgeous,” he smiled.
“What are you doing here?”
“What? You’re not happy to see me?” He pretended to look hurt. He started to walk away slowly.
“Shut up, Fred! You know I’ve missed you.” I pulled him back.
“I don’t know,” his voice rising. “I think you don’t w-”
I stopped him mid sentence to kiss him. I put my hands around his neck and pulled away. I tilted my head and smiled at him. I kissed him again.
“I knew I missed you,” he whispered.
“So what are you doing here? Is George here?”
“No, not this time. I apparated to Hogsmeade and just walked over here. I needed to see you. The shop, well, isn’t as cheerful without you. Besides, George said I needed to see you. And I always listen to George.”
“I was about to say. You work at a pranks shop, it should be cheerful all by itself. Well, remind me to give George a big kiss next time I see him. So how long are you going to be here? I hope for a long time.”
I gathered my stuff and stood before him. He took my hand and led me out of the library. My head, leaned against his shoulder, made him smile. I had missed his smile. I missed having his hand interlocked with mine. He didn’t say anything, but he took me to the Herbology greenhouse. I looked at him quizzically and he stared at me.
“I’m leaving in 20 minutes. I think you have Herbology next if I’m correct, and I didn’t want you to be late because of me. I have to visit Ginny, make sure she’s okay. But I will see you soon, love.”
“You can’t leave now. I have this class in ten minutes. Since when are you thoughtful about my tardiness? You can’t just stay a little bit longer?”
“I really have to go, love.”
His hand, still in mine, pulled away. But instead of letting go, I pulled him to me and kissed him again. He smiled as he finally pulled away. Before he left, he kissed me on the forehead.
“I’ll see you soon. I promise.”
“Bye,” I laughed as I saw the love of my life walk away.
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