We had decided that the next emotion to collect would be tiredness. And, as Dom chirpily reminded us, there was ‘no time like the present!’ So we were off to the Gryffindor boys’ dormitory, as James and Fred were the only two people in this castle that it would be vaguely acceptable for us to shake awake, collect their fatigue in the love-o-meter, and then charm back to sleep again.
Hopefully they’d think it had all been a dream by the time they woke up again in a few hours. If not, we’d have the excuse of ‘we were going to prank you, but a racoon was in your dormitory and scared us away!’ all ready.
It’s lame, I know, but it was the best the three of us could come up with in a space of about three hours. So there we go.
We slunk like slinky things through the dimly lit corridors. Eve and Dom were in front of me, eyes narrowed in concentration as they navigated the way to the Gryffindor common room. The ears of my bunny slippers wibbled around as a draft of air caught them.
It was five in the morning.
This was serious shit.
And anyway, I rock my pink-and-white fluffy bunny slippers like a boss.
“All clear ahead!” Eve whispered back. “Agents, move out!” We tiptoed across the corridor, and I wished that the Jaws theme tune would start playing just for that added atmosphere that Jaws could give even the most menial of tasks. My mum used to have it playing while she did the washing up. She’d pretend the knives were shark fins in the soapy water.
My mum was epic.
“Stop!” Eve whispered urgently. “Hide! Quick!” Without questioning it, we dove behind some handy suits of armour, holding our breath as light footsteps made their way towards us and Mrs Norris Jr. strolled past on patrol… with Thaggie in tow?! That traitor! I elbowed Dom,
“Your psycho cat’s hooked up with Norris!” I whispered as Dom looked round and her face paled. She watched her pet stalking arrogantly behind Mrs Norris with his tail proudly stuck in the air behind him as if he was King fucking George.
I don’t know why King fucking George in particular. He sounds fucking cool though.
When the two fearsome animals had passed, we soldiered on with our mission.
The Gryffindor password was still ‘Jubilee’, so we got into their common room easily. There was a first year asleep on the couch and drooling everywhere, but he was a minimal threat and we ignored him. The stairs up to the seventh year boys’ dormitory posed the most difficult obstacle however; they were more creaky than the ones in my grandma’s ancient old place. Did they invent these specifically so that they would give away any intruders trying to sneak up them in the middle of night? So the girls had the transforming slide thing, and the boys had insane creakiness – was that the deal then?
Whatever the reason was, Eve was not a happy mission controller. She kept glaring at the floor venomously and muttering like a mad person. I ran a hand through my hair, hoping that I didn’t look too dishevelled (on the off chance that one of the guys was awake).
We slipped into James and Fred’s room.
The first thing I remember was being amazed at how the place somehow smelt like fresh laundry and orange shampoo. The smells of cleanliness! In the room of four 17-year-olds! It was like a miracle. Even our dorm didn’t smell as nice.
I’d always assumed that it was because Savannah slept in there. She was a bad smell if I ever saw one.
“Lumos,” whispered Eve softly, raising her wand high so that we could see properly and get the right bed. We’d decided to do Fred; he was the person most likely to believe it had all been a dream the next morning.
I tiptoed over to the bed I could see him sprawled across. He was wearing glow-in-the-dark yellow boxers which were decorated with red flamingos- so obviously it was the right guy. Dom passed the LOM along to me, and I was poised in position, ready to wake him up, when he screamed.
“NO! NOT THE BUTTERCUPS!”
I froze, inches away from Fred’s face. He was still asleep.
“He sleep-talks,” Eve whispered softly. “I forgot to tell you, sorry!” I rolled my eyes, and slowly moved my hand forwards to prod the bloke awake, when he sat up in bed so violently that my hair was tousled in the resulting gust of air.
“Stop! Step away from the lawnmower!” Fred whimpered loudly, thumping the bed.
“He also sleep moves,” I hissed at Eve, retreating, a little creeped out. “Should we just do James instead?”
“Ok,” Eve shrugged and checked her watch. “But hurry!”
I approached James’s bed cautiously, half listening to Fred’s unintelligible murmurs in the background. This whole operation was turning out to be far trickier than previously anticipated.
The curtains around his bed were drawn, and as I reached forwards to open them, my foot caught on something and I tripped. I desperately tried to steady myself, but another shriek form Fred (“ORCHID MURDERERS!”) threw me off, and I crashed down onto James’s bed.
Only turns out, it wasn’t James’s bed.
Joe Brown yelped from underneath me and started flailing around with the bed sheets, meaning that I became hopelessly tangled. Eve’s groan was horribly audible, along with Dom’s giggles, as Joe and I rolled onto the floor together (him screaming about assassins and demons). Then a light was flicked on, hurting my eyes with the sudden brightness, and James was standing in front of us in a tight grey t-shirt and shorts, looking suitably shocked and confused.
“Bloody hell!” Joe exclaimed, standing up and staring at the three of us. I coughed sheepishly, then realised that I was wearing a tank top from three years ago coupled with decidedly skimpy shorts and bunny slippers, meaning that Joe wasn’t staring so much at my face but at a different area of my anatomy. James, it seemed, hadn’t let this go unnoticed.
“Eyes on her face, manwhore,” he growled, and Joe backed off looking a bit embarrassed. I grinned at him impishly.
“Give me the bloody lawn fertiliser, you dumb shit,” mumbled Freddy groggily as I sighed.
“Hi there James! Fancy seeing you awake at this time of night!” I chuckled awkwardly.
“Weee’ll just be going now!” Dom announced, quickly hauling me to my feet.
“Hope you don’t mind me asking,” James paused. “But what exactly … are you doing here?”
“Yeah,” Joe frowned. “I wake up to some chick lying on top of me? Was this like, attempted rape or something?”
“Ew!” I wrinkled my nose. “No way!” I decided that I didn’t like Joe Brown all that much.
“Soap!” Dom suddenly blurted out. “I was, err, looking for some more soap for my rare soap collection!”
James looked unimpressed. “Hol told me that collection didn’t exist.” Damn, I did didn’t I?! With a lazy flick of his wand, James locked the dormitory door. Great - we were trapped until we told them the real reason. I wondered just how long we could think up alibis for until we cracked.
“…we were trying to prank you!” I tried our prefabricated excuse. “And then this racoon -” I made a hand gesture that was supposed to show the path of the ninja racoon.
“Really?” James asked with an amused grin. I couldn’t help noticing how cute his hair looked all ruffled up and messy. I was sure Annie would… admire it… as well.
“Nah, you’re right, pranking’s too mainstream for us.”
“The truth is… “ Dom began. “Well…” We looked at each other. Joe was looking disgruntled. James looked like he was having fun, his arms were crossed and he was leaning against his bed.
“Well?” he prompted.
“A… a meteorite is about to hit earth … and we came to rescue you!” James laughed,
“As much as I appreciate the thought, I don’t think a meteorite is about to hit earth.”
“How do you know?” Dom piped up. “It’s called the great mystery theory of the unknown -“ I groaned,
“Don’t go there, Dom!”
Which gave me an idea.
I turned on the puppy dog eyes. Wrapping my arms around my middle I blinked up at James, softening my eyes and mouth and trying to look helpless and innocent. Like a chinchilla. Or some other such cute and adorably furry little animal.
“Please just let us out? We pinky promise with sugar on top that we won’t disturb your beauty sleep ever again.”
James considered it. “Um… no.” But while he was distracted, Eve had been inching towards the door.
“Alohomora!” Eve quickly opened it with her spell and we all ran out and were half way down the stairs before the boys really realised what had happened. They didn’t follow us, but we were certain that we’d be grilled by James in the morning. Dom bellowed up the stairs with a,
“So long, suckas!” before we darted out of the portrait hole.
That was kind of awkward.
Why had I suddenly developed the unfortunate habit of falling on top of people? More particularly, why did I always find myself in situations almost as awkward as the time Voldemort hugged Draco Malfoy in the second wizarding war? It just wasn’t cool. In the slightest. And it meant that random boys like Joe Brown could perv on me in the wee hours of the morning, which is always a treat.
I was going to have to get this falling-on-top-of-people problem looked into by a professional! And no, Dom, that does not mean you, you philosophical freak.
I suddenly remembered the love-o-meter; had we even managed to get what we came for in the end? I held it up to the light, and was gratified to see a silvery, misty substance swirling in the bottom.
Eve whistled to herself happily.
I invited Annie and Roxanne to sit with us at breakfast, and they accepted cheerfully. I purposefully told Dom and Eve to sit themselves so that Annie would have to be opposite James. The two were currently discussing the recent potions project quite animatedly, but James kept shooting me side glances. They were probably to do with last night.
“How are your buttercups, Freddy? Not murdered yet?” Dom teased. Eve looked up from the Daily Prophet and tried to hide her grin.
“Huh?” Fred frowned. “How do you know about my- James, have you been telling them about my sleep-talking?” Fred asked James in a hiss. James looked up from his conversation with Annie.
“They’re asking about my buttercups!”
“And your orchids,” I chipped in.
“Oh,” James chuckled. “They were in our dorm last night.”
“Really?” asked Annie, looking intrigued. “Why were you in their dorm?” Oho! Do I detect a hint of jealousy in her voice? This is a good sign indeed. *cue: creepy, knowing smile* Fred merely grumbled to himself and shovelled bacon into his mouth, earning a disapproving tut from Eve- ever the ladylike one. She’s the kind of girl to dress up as a fairy princess on Halloween instead of a slutty bunny, like I usually do. I wear my bunny slippers too. They complement the costume rather nicely.
“You know,” James said. “That is a really good question. Any of you going to tell me the truth yet?”
“We were trying to find the lost diadem of Rowena Ravenclaw…?” Dom tried, but trailed off under James’s stare. I could tell that he was getting suspicious. But we couldn’t tell him about the love potion because it was kind of top secret and may have been slightly … illegal?
We’d never really checked.
“Seriously,” James said. “I’m not going to just ignore the fact that there were three girls in my freaking bedroom last night, am I? You’re going to have to crack sometime.” He smirked.
We really had to think up a believable lie to feed the guy. And soon. But luckily, Roxy saved us from further interrogation that morning.
“Anyone want to hear about the time we were on holiday in Dubai and Fred sleepwalked into another person’s bed?”
“You know, you totally have a crush on Annie,” I said to James as we walked back to his common room together after the last lesson of the day. I was in a good mood because I’d got quite a good grade on the latest test (an A!), so I’d decided to execute stage one of the Annie/James plan: ‘planting the seed’. (of romance, duh)
“What?” he raised an eyebrow. “No I don’t.”
“Come on,” I pushed his arm playfully. “It’s so obvious!”
“What are you talking about? I barely know her!”
“So?” I paused. “Don’t you think she’s pretty?” James shuffled and harrumphed awkwardly,
“Well, yeah, I suppose but-“
“Seriously, she’s perfect for you! Trust me.”
“I’ve only recently broken up with Savannah, Hol,” James frowned. “Don’t you think it’s a little soon?”
“Well you don’t have to ask her out right now!” I said.
“Hey! Who said I was going to ask her out at all?”
“I did,” I replied smugly. “Because you will. You’ll see.” I dug my lip gloss out of my bag, and reapplied it carefully. My lips felt slightly naked without the comforting shimmer of a lip gloss. As we reached the Gryffindor common room, James suddenly stiffened.
“What?” I asked anxiously.
“Just remembered that I need to go and set up in the Gryffindor locker rooms. It’s the Gryffindor-Slytherin game tomorrow,” he sighed.
“Nervous?” I asked.
“No. More like bored of the stupid hype and fuss it all creates.”
“I’d have to agree,” I smiled slightly. “Well, I’ll see you later, yeah?”
“Definitely,” James grinned and ruffled his hair. “See you around, Parker.”
“Alright, Potter,” I rolled my eyes as he jogged off and I was suddenly left feeling rather lonely.
The space that James had been standing in seemed extremely big and empty. I hurried off to find Eve, hoping that she could fill it.
I found Eve in the dormitory, re-organising her cupboards. She often did this; and for fun too! I would never be bothered with something like that. She didn’t even look round as I came in.
“There’s a Hogsmeade notice on the notice board downstairs,” I remarked, throwing myself onto my bed and rubbing my temples, where the beginnings of a headache were emerging. “We can probably collect the rest of the emotions while we’re there. I’m hoping James asks Annie out, too!”
“Yeah,” Eve said vaguely and I wondered if she was feeling ill or something.
“She’s at Quidditch practice. Can’t believe she agreed to play.”
“Can’t believe Ryan Davies asked her to when the first match is tomorrow.”
“I know right.”
“Have you picked up anything new on Scorpius and Rose today?”
This was weird. It wasn’t like Eve to be monosyllabic. She was usually so full of new information and facts and figures that it was hard to get her to shut up.
I stood up, “Eve Turner, I have been your best friend for nearly seven years. I know when something is wrong.” Eve turned round, irritated,
“I’m just tired, okay? It’s not always some big, dramatic deal.”
“I don’t make everything into a big, dramatic deal!” I protested. “I was just trying to make sure my friend was okay!”
“Well, don’t,” Eve snapped. “Leave me alone.”
“Oh, so would you rather I ignored it when you act weirdly? Or pretend that everything’s fine?!” This was horrible. Eve and I were fighting! It was always Dom and Eve who got into tiffs. This was horrible. I hated arguments.
“Yes, actually,” Eve snarled. “Sometimes, people just want a bit of personal space!” I gasped,
“What is your problem today?”
Her response, however, was cut off as Dom came barrelling into the room, her face flushed and excited. I paused. Obviously Dom had enjoyed Quidditch then.
“Ryan Davies asked me to Hogsmeade, and I said yes!” Dom blurted out in one big rush.
Eve and I both stared at her.
She agreed to go on a date with someone? Without talking to us first? Why was everyone acting so oddly today?! And besides, Ryan Davies really wasn’t the type of guy Dom was usually attracted to. He had a bit of a reputation as a ladies’ man, and was short and blonde, instead of the tall-dark-and-handsome that Dom preferred.
Dom hadn’t dated many boys from school, but plenty outside of it. I wasn’t even sure if Eve had even kissed a guy; she was very closed up about her love life which Dom and I didn’t understand. And me? I’d been on a few dates before, but only ever had one proper boyfriend. But things hadn’t worked out. Because I was a crap girlfriend.
Yeah, I know, it sucks. I’ve got used to it.
I suddenly realised that Eve and I were still staring at Dom with open mouths.
“You know, you could at least pretend to be happy for me,” Dom scowled and stormed into the bathroom, flipping us off before slamming the door behind her.
Well, I could have handled that one better.
But at least one thing made sense to me now: the reason why Ryan Davies had seemed so keen to get Dom onto the Quidditch team.
What was he up to?
a/n: Hi everyone! Really, really, really sorry about the wait! My grandma had a heart attack in Malta, and life became hectic and horrible for a while. :/ I’m so sad that I didn’t manage to get this out before I went back to school! Wah.
Anyway, I hope you at least enjoyed this chapter! It was slightly bits and bobby, but there were a few important sections. Sort-of-credit to the tv show ‘Friends’ for the racoon thing at the beginning. Joey, anyone? :P What do you think will happen next? Will things get back to normal between the girls in the next chapter? What could’ve been wrong with Eve? Next chapter: we finally find out what the deal is with James and Quidditch! A review would be luvverly ;D. I don’t own anything, by the way!