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Chapter 1 : Weak
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“What makes them better than anyone else? Those egotistical, entitled, jack asses,” One of them says.
Those words made me freeze, I had heard them before. No, not heard, written, I had written those words. In my private journal, about them, last time they annoyed me, I had written about them. Shit, they had my journal.
“Did you hear me Stone?” Someone asks
“What?” I ask looking up.
“I asked if this was yours.” Oliver says holding out the notebook.
“Why would you think that?” I ask glaring at him.
“Well it’s hateful like you, and it has your name in it.” He says
“Look who learned to read.” I snap “and give me that back.”
“No needs to be rude; but based on what is written in this you hate me, so I’m not surprised.” He says. “And I think I’ll keep it.”
“Great, I don’t really care all that much as you know. So, please, if you won’t give that back, leave me alone.” I say turning back to my notes, or what would be my notes had I written anything.
“No, I think I’m going to take a seat right here.” He says pulling out the chair next to mine.
“That’s just great.” I tell him “Enjoy sitting here alone.”
I stand up, gather my things quickly, return the book I had been reading to its proper place, I’m prepared to leave when I trip. I catch myself with my hands, which now sting, but still I manage to bang my knee against the ground hard enough to bruise.
“Great, just so freaking great.” I mutter as I push myself up off the ground.
“You know, if I weren’t so egotistical, maybe I would help you.” Oliver says laughing.
“I would expect nothing less from you, Wood.” I snap as I gather my things again. “And you forgot entitled jackass.”
I, red faced, finally leave the library it wasn’t quiet the dramatic exit I had been hoping for, but at least I was noticed. The walk to the dungeons wasn’t one I particularly enjoyed, I had banged my knee when I fell and it hurt to walk and then there was the great feeling that accompanied everyone reading your private journal. How did he get it anyway? Stole it probably, I wouldn’t be surprised if that were to be the case, he is after all a prat. Though most guys are, let me rephrase that, most Quidditch players are.
I didn’t really get it, that whole sports thing. It’s not from lack of trying, I went to a few games a few years back, but I just could not fathom it. It’s just a bunch of jocks flying around on brooms. How is that interesting? Or fun for that matter? I mean, seriously, how does anyone sit around for hours and watch other people do things? It’s boring and insipid. To me everything about sports, even the people who play them, is just pointless. Even muggle sports hold no appeal for me; I’ m terrible at them all anyway.
I have zero hand/eye coordination, so it’s good I have no desire to play sports. What is it about playing a sport that makes someone think they’re better than everyone else? It’s a trend here, once someone gets on the team they just become complete jerks, they think that because someone else didn’t make the team they aren’t good enough anymore. That’s why I hate them, because somebody has to, somebody has to stand up to them.
I realized I was now standing in front of the doors to my common room, I hadn’t realized I had been heading this way. I never came down here unless it’s after dinner and I mean to go straight up to my room and to bed. I have no desire to walk through those doors, none at all. So I turn around and head back up out of the dungeons. I’m not really a strong believer in house pride either, but being a Slytherin there’s plenty of reasons to hate the house, everyone is rude and holier than thou, I’m not even entirely sure how I ended up in the house I did. Though I guess it might have to do with the fact that I come from a pure blood family.
Unsure of what to do now, I go back to the library, it is Saturday afternoon there’s nowhere else to go. Of course Oliver is still sitting at my table flipping through my notebook. I look around every other table is full, or has one person of equal annoyance as Oliver Wood, so I will be sitting on the floor. I scan the shelves for the book I was reading on rare magical creatures, it’s gone. I go over my homework list in my head, only to realize that I’ve done all of it except Care of magical Creatures, typical. I take a seat on the floor and sigh in frustration, this just kept getting better, and better, and now I have a stress headache.
“Stone, you came back.” An irritating voice says standing a few feet away from me.
“Piss off, Wood.” I snap unable to put up with his crap right now.
“But, I’m a…” he pauses for a moment and I hear pages turning “pig faced, ball juggling, git, so that’s not something I would do.”
Perfect he’s about half way through it now.
“Do you truly have nothing better to do than harass me?” I ask looking up.
“Greylin Stone, I have nothing at all to do period.” He says laughing.
“So tormenting me is nothing?” I snap “You’re only proving me right.”
“Hey, I’m not the one that dedicated an entire notebook to trashing the Quidditch teams.” He says
“Not the teams in general, most of those insults are aimed at one person.” I snap defending myself.
“Oh yeah, who?” He asks interested.
“Why on earth would I tell you?” I scoff
“Because, I have your notebook, and I’m pretty sure you want it back.”
“So I’m being blackmailed over this. That’s great, perfect actually, yet more proof of why people like you suck.”
“I repeat, I am not the one that is keeping an entir-“
“Yeah, yeah whatever, I’m a terrible person. If you give me the journal back, I will tell you which insults are about you.” I snap.
“That’s not really appealing, I’ve read most of this thing, and if a single one of these is meant specifically for me, I don’t want to know.” He says
“You’re the ball juggling monkey.” I tell him.
“What was that? I just said I didn’t want to know!”
“That is exactly why I told you.”
“So, wait, every time you mention the ball juggling monkey it’s me?”
“Every single time.”
“Then who is pig face?” he asks
“Did you really think that was you?” I laugh “Pig face is Flint, Marcus Flint; I hate him far more than I hate you, or anyone else for that matter.”
“I think my name is worse!” he protests
“I’ve gotten more creative, I started it so I could vent about Flint, but it grew, and now most everyone is in there.” I tell him. “And now since I have answered your questions, give me my journal back.”
“No, not yet, we’re connecting,”
“Listen to me, we will never ‘connect’ I hate you far too much.”
“You’re a real charmer.”
“As are you.”
“Why do you hate me?”
“That’s personal; I’m done talking about this.”
“I’m serious,” He says sitting next to me “Greylin, why do you hate me? I’ve never done anything to you.”
“Wood, I don’t know you nearly well enough to tell you something like that. No matter if you have my journal, you won’t find it in there either.”
“Why won’t you tell me? I know a lot about you already, one more thing won’t hurt you.”
“Yes, it would, and you wouldn’t willingly give out private information about yourself. Why should I?”
He didn’t reply he just looked at the floor in front of him. He looked like he was deep in thought, which made me very uncomfortable, because when people think they usually end up saying something important, and that means I have to pretend to care… Which I hate doing because I generally don’t care about anyone. In fact I think that if you care too much it just makes you weak. I don’t think I could ever stand to be weak, not with everything that the world throws at people.
“Greylin, I have decided to tell you something.” He says coming out of his thoughts.
“Wood, I don’t care, whatever it is, I just don’t care.”
It was really starting to bother me that he was using my name, I’m fine with people calling me by my last name, but not my first, I absolutely refuse to be on a first name basis with anyone, because I hate everyone. It’s harsh yes, but liking people is over rated, they all hurt you in the end.
“Don’t care,” he says “I’m telling you any way.”
“Joy.” I say, irritation present in my voice.
“You really are a gem, huh?” he asks laughing “What I want to tell you is; I really don’t think I like you that much.”
“That’s nice,” I say rolling my eyes “but it’s no reason for me to tell you anything, so I’m not going to.”
“Then I might just go read this to the rest of the team.” He says holding up my notebook.
“You won’t do that,” I laugh
“Oh, and why do you think that?” he asks
“You’re far too nice to do that, to them, or to me really.”
“I showed it to Fred, George, and Lee.”
“Yeah, they see it as a joke, and they kind of know me, they know I don’t like them.”
“I highly doubt it would affect them all too much.”
“Go ahead then do it, most people know I hate everyone anyway.”
“Why do you hate you hate everyone?”
“I don’t know I just do, maybe it has something to do with the fact that I’m in Slytherin so everyone hates me.”
“What about your own house?”
“I have always hated them; I’m really only in Slytherin because of my family telling me I couldn’t be anywhere else.”
“So you just asked the hat to put you there because of that?” he asks
“Well as an eleven year old in my family I didn’t know I could think for myself.”
“You sure are telling me a lot of personal stuff, I thought you weren’t going to do that.”
“Oh stuff it, Wood.”
I collapse into my usual seat in the back of the room, Potions would be no different from any other class; I would be alone. That is one thing I can count on, one thing that would not change. After Wood read that stupid notebook he had been following me around, messing everything up. I had made it almost seven years in this school without being noticed, and then Oliver Wood just had to go and screw that up. Not in this class though, there is no way Snape will let him switch seats half way through the year, he will be up at the front like always. A small, but pleasing victory for me, and I wasn’t going to let this go.
One convenience of the back seat, you always know what people are talking about when they walk in; that is how I know Wood was talking about me, no surprise there.
“She’s weird Oliver. Why are you spending so much time on her?” His friend asks as they enter the class.
“She just got something about her, I can’t explain it, Don, she’s just… I can’t give up on this.” Oliver says to her.
She doesn’t reply, but she does look over at me, I quickly look over at the board so it isn’t too obvious I’d heard them, and she glares at me. I smirk at her to piss her off, I wasn’t particularly fond of Dona, she didn’t like me much either, so I guess it’s fair.
Now too far out of earshot, I’m not sure if they’re still talking about me, but I think they probably switched topics because the glare has stopped.
During class no matter how much I tried to focus on my notes, or my potion, I found myself looking up at him. I could be half way through a sentence, and then the next thing I know I’m staring at the back of his head, or watching the way his hand twitches over the paper in front of him. I thought I might just be losing it when I saw Dona touch his arm, my blood started to boil and I wanted nothing more than to smack her. I had to be losing it; there is no other logical explanation to why I felt that way. I could just punch myself for being so stupid.
I am better alone, I always have been, I don’t want to change that, I don’t like change. I don’t intend to be alone forever, but I know the probability of someone you meet in school being the right person for you, and I don’t intend to go down that road, I don’t intend to get hurt. Letting yourself get hurt is for the weak, and I can’t afford to be weak.
I got up, and headed toward to supply’s, since I was low on lacewing flies. I passed by Dona and Oliver, and they grew silent as I did. God, can’t they ever talk about something else besides me? It’s aggravating that they don’t even attempt to hide it. I angrily search through the supplies, unable to find what I needed.
“Want some help?” Someone ask touching my shoulder.
“No,” I snap pulling away from their touch.
“Calm down, Greylin.” They say
The use of my name means it’s, of course, Oliver.
“Piss off Wood.” I breathe trying to calm myself, not very successfully. Something about him just makes my blood boil, and my pulse race a little.
“I’m just trying to help.” He says putting his hands up in the air.
“I don’t need help, not from you, not from anyone!” I snap a little louder than I had intended to.
“Just calm down.” He repeats looking in my eyes.
His eye contact makes me uncomfortable, but I can’t seem to look away. I continue to stare into his warm brown eyes, hating myself for it, hating the weakness I was showing. I swallow audibly, and finally pull my eyes away from his.
“Just leave me alone, Wood. Please just don’t do this anymore.” I say looking down at the ground.
I don’t wait for him to reply, I just leave wishing I was unaware of the fact that he was watching me as I returned to my place at the back of the room. I sit down, and foolishly chance a glance back toward him; he’s still staring at me, unabashed. I find it even more difficult than before to look away, but I know that I have to. Even as I look away I feel my cheeks begin to burn as they turned red with embarrassment.
My mind was screaming at me that I was a fool for feeling what I was, but something else seemed to say that the only foolish thing I had done was look away. I wasn’t accustomed to feeling this way, it was confusing and wrong. What had I let him do to me? What did this mean? How could I be so stupid? All these thoughts raced through my mind, only to be followed by even more confusing things. Why was it so bad that I felt something for him? How could I let this pass me by? Why can’t I just have a little fun?
It was all so overwhelming; I wasn’t sure what I could do to put an end to it. I’m going to start by getting that god forsaken journal back, though.
I had to swallow my pride and all my other unwanted feelings, I had to get it back today, or I would never get up the nerve again. Oliver is practicing alone on the Quidditch pitch, which is the perfect opportunity to get my notebook back.
I watch him zoom around in the air above me; it’s surprisingly graceful for a sport. I can’t help but smile as he maneuvers through the air with speed, power, and beauty. Yet I continue to wait for something that will remind me why I hate it so much, only none come. Could I have been wrong? I shake my head, it doesn’t matter; I’m here for the notebook.
“Wood!” I yell up at him.
He stops and looks down at me. “You are the one person I thought would never be out here.” I says smiling.
“Just come down here, I need to talk to you.” I snap at him.
“Give me a good reason, and I might.” He says laughing.
“Stop being difficult and just get down here.” I yell getting exasperated already.
He, still laughing, flies down and lands a few feet away from me. He smiles brightly at me as he places his broom on the ground. I notice he is just as graceful on the ground as he is in the air. How did I not see that before?
“Well, here I am…” Oliver says looking at me expectantly.
“Right…” I say mentally shaking myself “I need that notebook back, now.”
“I don’t have it with me.” He shrugs.
“Then go get it, I need it.” I say trying to hide the desperation in my voice.
“I’ll get it later.” He says calmly.
“Wood! Please, just… please?” I ask my voice shaking.
I can’t do this, I’m too weak. I can’t stand here and talk to him, it’s affecting me…
“Are you okay?” he asks taking a step toward me.
I move away on pure instinct, and shake my head.
“No I’m not okay, I need my notebook back.” I snap
“Just find me when you have it.”
I turn to leave, but I don’t want to go, I want him to stop me, to call my name. He doesn’t, though, he just stands there dumbstruck, and confused.
“Hey, Stone, want to go for a ride?” he asks when I’m half way back to the castle, I barely hear him.
“What?” I ask turning around.
He holds up the broom in reply. Now it’s my turn to be dumbstruck, no one has ever asked me that, of course I’ve never wanted to. Until now…
“Come one, just this once.” Oliver says beckoning me toward him.
“I don’t think so…” I say shaking my head.
I don’t care if I want to do it; going anywhere near Oliver Wood is dangerous.
“Don’t be such a coward, Greylin.” He says walking toward me.
I’m not sure why I do it, but I meet him in the middle and take the broom from his hands.
After a moment of him teaching how to fly it properly, I’m up in the air, making a mockery of his grace. It’s the most exhilarating thing I think I’ve ever felt, exhilarating and terrifying. I want to scream, but can’t seem to find enough air to make the noise, so I just sigh. The world seems strangely more calm and beautiful from up here, like as long as I never touch the ground again I will never feel pain again.
I know I have to land though, I have to, I’m not sure why, but I just know I do. As soon as my feet touch the ground I feel myself begin to sway. I try to regain my balance, but there’s nothing to grab onto, and I begin to fall. Oliver see’s this and lunges forward to catch me.
He grabs me just in time, but now both of us tumble to the ground. I end up laying on top of him, and I’m unable to move because he’s still holding onto me.
“You okay?” he asks me looking into my eyes again.
“Fine…” I breathe; I don’t want to look away this time.
“You had me worried there for a minute.”
I wasn’t sure what to say, he was worried about me… And now he’s holding me.
“Thanks, for catching me, and well… taking a dive for me.”
“You’re worth it.” He says sounding so sure of himself.
I look away embarrassed now, I could never say something like that…
“Oliver?” I ask still refusing to meet his eyes.
I want to tell him how I feel, but I don’t even know. I try stumbling over the words, but nothing really comes out right, so I finally look at him hoping that he understands.
He warm brown eyes meet my cold blue eyes, and he presses his lips ever so lightly against mine, his grip on me tightening.
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