Chapter 6 : How To Charm a Girl While Wearing Suspenders
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Of all the songs.
When I find out who came up with that one, they will wake up one morning gasping for mercy. If they wake up I suppose.
"You ready for this?" Al asks as he adjusts my glasses.
"God no. But I never will be. You?" I ask, adjusting his suspenders.
"I was born ready for this." He smirks.
I smile back. "Is scorpius ready with the music?"
"Yup. He tested it last night. Said Filch nearly caught him it was so loud."
"Brilliant. You remember the lines?" I tighten his bow tie before ducking behind a tapestry with him as we see crowds of people coming for dinner, which is being served in two and a half minutes. We're ready for this. We've practiced a bunch, and we even have matching outfits of blue collared shirts, jeans, suspenders, glasses, and bowties. The classic nerd look.
"Not easy to forget are they?"
"Think everybody's in there yet?" He asks a couple of minutes later.
"Yep. Let's give the signal."
We step out cautiously behind the tapestry, earning a weird look from a fourth year straggler. I stick my tongue out at him and he hurries into the hall.
That's right. Be scared.
Al gives the signal, a high pitched bird sound from his wand that can just be heard in the Great Hall.
"You nervous?" He asks.
"Hell no." I respond, smiling. "You?"
"Absolutely." He smiles. "In a completely manly way of course."
"Why of course. Here we go." I say as our music starts.
We open the doors together and enter, running over to our respective tables. He has Gryffindor, I have Hufflepuff.
I jump onto Hufflepuff table, trying not to land in mashed potatoes, as I sing the lines me and Al have practiced for the last week.
"I'm bringin' Sexy back... The mother boys don't know how to act..."
I strut up the table singing this first line.
Then it's Al's turn.
"Dirty babe... I'll let you whip me if I misbehave..."
I have to try not to laugh as he sings this, running up the Gryffindor table to the cheers of everyone.
We trade off lines, dancing on top of tables.
"Get your sexy on" I sing.
"Go ahead, be gone with it." Al sings back.
Just then, Professor Chang, the Arithmancy teacher, gets over her shock and comes to put a stop to this. So what do we do but dance around her, basically running away, jumping from spot to spot to avoid her.
She's chasing us as we sing the rest of the song.
"I'm bringing sexy back... 'Cause you're burning up"
Allright, I'm not going to lie. This is the most fun I've had in ages.
I jump from the Gryffindor table to the Slytherins, and dance right in front of the Slytherin's keeper's face. Eat that, Matt McClaggen.
And just as the teachers have finally recovered from their initial shock, Al and I jump onto the Ravenclaw table together, at opposite ends, and put our wands up, setting off sprinklers we set up the night before in the ceiling.
In the wetness, Al and I meet at the center of the table. I jump on his shoulders when he offers, and we stand triumphant, our fists in the air.
Everyone's cheering for us, even as I jump down from Al's shoulders and he pulls me by the hand out of the room.
Al's cousin Fred and Aaron Harvey are on their feet, whistling.
I blow kisses to everyone before the door shuts behind us and we sprint full speed out the front door, racing down to the Quidditch pitch.
We make it to the locker room, shutting and locking the door behind us.
"That was brilliant." I say, loosening my bowtie.
"That was. And these outfits definitely helped." He says, fiddling with his bowtie.
"Oh definitely." I agree, reaching over to help him untie his bowtie.
"So you think that we're safe here for awhile?" He asked, unclipping his suspenders and taking off the glasses.
"Oh yeah. Frank placed a false tip to a couple of the prefects, so they'll be mighty busy. They won't catch us until tomorrow." I answered him, discarding my suspenders and throwing them on the floor.
"Hey, we should put all this crap somewhere." He said, piling all the suspenders, glasses, and the bowties together.
"Yeah, just choose a random locker."
He scanned the wall of lockers, before choosing one. "Locker 77. For good luck. I hereby claim locker 77 as our locker. Any random junk we collect shall be left in this locker for only us to see."
"Allright then." I said, a little weirded out by the formalities. But I've learned not to question Al's methods of ritual. That boy loves his ritual.
He closed the metal door with a clang and slid down to the floor, unbuttoning a couple of shirt buttons so that his neck could breathe a little bit.
I went over and joined him against the lockers.
"Yeah?" He looked at me, turning his head.
"That was really fun. I missed you this summer."
"I missed you too Tails."
I smiled. He hadn't called me 'Tails' since probably third year.
"Promise me we'll always be best friends. No matter what shit happens." I said honestly.
He looked me straight in the eyes. "Absolutely I promise."
He held out his hand.
I spat in mine and shook on it.
And that was when something in me clicked, sparked, fizzled, banged, hit me.
I had a big fat wad of feelings for one Mr. Al Potter.
I was such a sucker.
Okay, so you know all those crappy romance movies where there's some big ball or dance or whatever, and then some beautiful mystery girl shows up in a big poofy dress looking like a million bucks, and she walks down the steps oh so gracefully, and heads turn?
Yeah, well that doesn't actually happen in real life.
Or that's what I thought, until I saw it in action.
It was December of our sixth year, so two months or so since our Sexyback performance and two months or so since I realized I felt something for Al.
Everything had been going smoothly, except for the frustration of loving someone who sees you as a friend, said friend being your best friend, being in denial about being in love with this dude, and not being able to tell anyone about this predicament.
But you'll hear more on that later.
So it was December, and the annual Yule Ball was upon us, a tradition held in honor of the Battle of Hogwarts. Everyone fourth year and up could attend, as well as parents, teachers and ministry officials. It was a pretty big deal.
The whole shebang was hosted in the Great Hall and the Entrance Hall, and they were both decorated quite lavishly.
This huge event created a whole lotta drama among girls, as guys were all supposed to bring dates, and the whole month before the event meant that the halls were filled with catfights, brawls, melees, general disliking and contemptous glares.
I wasn't caught up in the Ball at all, probably because I had bigger things on my mind, such as my father's ordeal in prison, the upcoming Quidditch match against Ravenclaw, and my pinky toenail, which was looking somewhat lopsided in recent weeks. All of which were more pressing matters which called for my attention.
Even meetings of The Dare Jar Club were filled with the guys gossiping like old women, debating who they should ask and when.
It had even come close to a couple of fights after Scorpius asked Rose Weasley as a joke three times. All in ridiculously silly ways.
Rose had told me she really didn't mind, it just made her want to knee him in the nuts more so than usual. Rose and Scorpius really aren't the most amiacable people in the world, and they have actually kind of hated each other since the Whose Fault is it that Frank's Frog Fell out of the Boat and Got Lost? debate in first year. Rose claimed she was just holding it because she thought it was cute when Scorpius just grabbed Mr. Gizzard and chucked him as far as the eye can see.
Scorpius says that Rose squealed when she realized how slimy Mr. Gizzard was, and accidentaly threw him out of the boat before Scorpius got a chance to even hold him.
But anyways, Scorp actually admitted to me that the first time he asked Rose he was being serious, but she started laughing in his face and he went along with it, pretending it was a joke, asking her another two times to cover it up.
Poor kid. And Al keeps giving him crap for asking out his favorite cousin as a joke. Which his cousins Fred and Louis did not like to hear. Which means that our Quidditch team is somewhat awkward right now. Which adds to the pressing issue of the Ravenclaw match coming up soon (although everyone knows we're going to cream them).
But the current roster was this:
Tanner was going with some Seventh Year girl that was quite fit in the guy's opinions.
John was going with Debbi Green, a friend of Ashley Rickards (the girl who shunned Al in third year). She actually seems pretty nice.
Frank and Brad were going with some Hufflepuff twins. Their names are Gabby and Abby, so of course I don't know which person is going with who, as I can't tell them apart.
Scorpius still hadn't actually asked anyone, as he had been too busy asking Rose as a joke.
Al hadn't asked anyone either, but he had admitted that he wanted to ask Angela Erikson, since things hadn't really worked out the way he wanted them to back in September. Remember, that was the week Tanner had to say "in bed" after everything. I was trying to remain blase about all this, and had resorted to pinching my arm really hard everytime I felt jealous about it.
"Hey Tay-tay, why's your arm all red?" Scorp asked me in our charms class a week before the ball.
"No reason." I said. "And it's not red."
"Yes it is, and it's purple in a couple of spots too. Are you sure you're okay? Maybe you should see the nurse. I can always whip you something up in Potions if you want me too."
"NO! That will definitely NOT be nessecary!" I said hastily. Scorpius was a wreck in Potions. I'm sorry, but the boy is downright awful. "Look, I'll tell you later, okay? Next time we hang out."
"Ooh! So it IS something! Well count on telling me soon, because we haven't hung out together in a long time! I have so much to tell you!" He said eagerly.
I rolled my eyes. "What about three nights ago when you and Frank broke into my dorm and brought me out to the Quidditch pitch to set up the gnomes for your prank against the Hufflepuff Quidditch team?"
"Oh yeah, that was great. But Frank was there, so it wasn't one on one, Tay-tay and Scorp time!" He says like a little puppy.
"Please stop calling me Tay-Tay." I say, somewhat exasperated.
"Don't you like it though? You haven't said anything about it since I started calling you that two weeks ago! And you let Al call you Tails!" He says indignantly.
"That's different. And I just didn't want to hurt your feelings."
"Well consider them hurt." He says, pouting.
"Oh for heaven's sake Scorp."
"You know, you've been in a pretty pissy mood lately. You better tell me what's going on with you during our little make-up sesh. Does tonight work?" He asks.
"Why of course. Let me just drop whatever I have planned tonight so we can have a meaningful gossip session where I pour out my hopes and dreams to you."
"Great! That's perfect! Let's say eight o'clock after Quidditch practice in the library!"
I bang my head against the table.
"Tay-Tay?" He asks. "You know, self-harm is a serious condition. You're really getting me worried."
"I don't know Scorpius, the whole situation is just so complicated..." I said, tossing another rock into the black lake.
"How is the situation of you not going to the Ball a complicated situation?" He asked.
"Well, it's just... there's no bloke I want to nessicarily go with..."
"So?" He asked. "Why not just go stag?"
"I'd probably be going stag by myself, since Rose will probably get asked by that Ravenclaw she's always flirting with in Potions."
He scowled. "Well, either way, I find it hard that there isn't one guy you want to ask you."
"Well, it's just, I kind of fancy this one person..."
"Um... I can't say." I fidget nervously before chucking a rock into the water.
"What? Why not?" His eyebrows are scrunched.
"It's too complicated. I'm trying to get over them right now."
"Well why are you getting over them?" He asked.
"I'm not. And I'm trying because it's Al."
Oh man. I can't believe I just told Scorpius. Crap.
But, it does feel pretty good to have it off my chest.
Scorpius does a double take.
I hurriedly cover my tracks. "Scorpius- you can't tell him. I mean, you have to keep this uber-secret. If anyone else finds out, I'm screwed over! Royally and completely."
"Scorpius!! I'm warning you right now! No one else knows, and it better stay that way, or you're going to wake up in the near future with a snake cradling your neck!"
"YOU FANCY A- mmphffbffm..."
I cut him off by shoving my hands over his mouth before he can shout it to the whole world.
"Shut up!" I say desperately. "Not a word!!"
He holds up his hands in surrender, and I let him go. "Allright, I won't tell a soul."
I glare at him threateningly. "That's right you won't."
"But seriously?" Scorp asked. "I guess I can kind of see it now."
"And why's that?"
"You two are just so close, you know. And sometimes, I wonder..."
"Wonder what?" I ask, curious, as he trails off.
"Nothing. It's just that some of the looks Al gives you are more than just the platonic, 'sup friend? look."
"Ha. Right. Well, I know for a fact that that's not true. Which is why I'm getting over him. More or less."
"Yeah, oh well. You never know." It's quiet for a couple of minutes. "Hey Tay Tay?"
"Since neither of us can go with who we really want, the two of us should just go together. As mates of course. It'll just be like, 'sup friend? Let's blow this party. We'd have fun that way."
I shrug. "Sounds good to me."
"Please don't ever say 'sup again. It's kind of weird coming from you."
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