I jumped back in my chair, startled as I suddenly saw what he was saying.
"-and if you can't pay attention in my class, it'll be detention!"
I held up my hands in protest. "Hang on, Professor! I'm deaf! I couldn't hear you! The only way I can understand what people are saying is if I'm looking at them. I wasn't aware that class had started yet!"
Professor Snape stopped and raised his eyebrow.
I glanced down the row at Harry, whose hands were clenched into fists to keep himself from telling him I was deaf, I suppose.
I looked back at Professor Snape. "I'm really sorry, Professor. It won't happen again."
Snape sneered. "Just because you and your brother are Hogwart's new celebrities does not mean that you get special treatment, Ms. Potter."
He turned around and I shrugged and looked at Courtney. She was glaring at Snape's back, outraged.
"What is it?" I scribbled on a scrap of parchment.
"He just took five points from Gryffindor for your inability to pay attention!!" She wrote back furiously.
I opened my mouth to say something, but Ron kicked my leg from my other side. "Don't push it. Fred and George told me that he's a real git." He said lowly as Snape began writing on the board.
I clenched my fist, grabbed my quill, and started scribbling down what Snape was writing on the board.
The rest of the class just went downhill from there.
It became clear very quickly that Snape despised Harry and I. He took another point from Gryffindor by blaming Harry for not helping Neville with his potion when they weren't even partners!
I was so confused and upset that Hermione had to stop me several times from putting the wrong ingredient in our potion or putting the right one in at the wrong time. Then Snape went and blamed me for making Hermione do the whole potion, taking off another two points.
I was so mad that as soon as class was over, I bolted out the door. I was walking down the hallway when I felt a shove from behind me.
I fell to the ground but got right back up and shoved Malfoy right back. "Stay away, Malfoy." I warned before continuing down the hallway.
I kept walking until someone grabbed my arm to stop me.
I turned to see Harry and signed, "What's up?"
Harry was looking at me angrily as he signed, "You know that Snape just took off ten more points for you shoving Malfoy?"
My eyes widened. "Seriously?" I signed. "But Malfoy shoved me to the ground! All I did was push him a little!"
Harry shook his head. "Snape saw you. That's all the excuse that he needed."
"That bastard." I said, clenching my fists to keep myself from running back to his class to tell him that.
"Bloody hell, Hollie, why did you have to act like that today?" Harry burst out.
I gave Harry a weird look. "So you're blaming me for Snape being an assshole?"
People passing in the hallway were watching us as Harry threw his hands up in the air.
"You know, Hollie," He signed angrily, "I just wanted to fit in for once in my life! And I almost could have! But having a deaf sister who loses 17 house points in one class does not help! You're just making it worse!"
My eyes widened and my lower lip trembled for a second before I clenched my jaw. I glared at Harry.
"Good to know that you feel this way, Harry." I snapped, ready to get away from him. "Next time just give me a little more notice."
Then I turned and stormed down the hallway.
I blinked tears out of my eyes and kept my head down as I walked to class.
Do all first days of school have to be this bloody awful?
The rest of the day passed by excruciatingly slowly. I sat in the front of every class with Hermione to avoid being near Harry. At lunch, I squished in between Neville and Seamus, across from Fred, George, Dean, Courtney, and Lee to avoid Harry because he tried to talk to me twice.
It was the first time I'd ever hidden behind my deafness. Any other time, I try as hard as I can to acknowledge when people are talking to me.
But I completely ignored Harry. I had nothing to say to him.
As soon as Charms was over, I rushed out of the class and went outside onto the grounds. I walked to the lake and dropped my bag. Then I took off my shoes and socks and waded into the shallow water, sitting on a rock with my feet dangling in the water.
After a while, I felt a tap on my shoulder and turned to see Jem, who had a pumpkin pastie with him.
He held it out as a peace offering. "I'm so sorry for whatever I did." He signed.
My lower lip trembled. I sobbed and threw myself into Jem's arms.
He patted me on the back, understanding that I didn't want to talk. Jem sat on the boulder beside me and rocked me gently as I cried, smoothing my hair back.
When I finally calmed down, Jem pulled back and signed, "Do you want to tell me what's wrong?"
I sniffed and nodded. "It's Harry." I signed, looking at Jem. "He...he said that he wanted to fit in and that having a deaf sister wasn't helping. Basically told me off, saying I was being a pain in the ass."
Jem's eyebrows shot up. "He said that?" He signed, surprised.
"Yeah. Right after I lost Gryffindor seventeen bloody points in Snape's class."
"Ouch." Jem signed, making a face.
I nodded. "Tell me about it."
Jem shook his head then. "Look at me, Hollie." He signed. "Harry is extremely lucky to have a sister like you. And if he doesn't realize that, then it's his loss." Jem put his hand under my chin to look me in the eye. "I'm serious, Hollie." He signed.
I sighed and smiled. "Thanks, Jem." I signed, giving him another hug.
"So," Jem held up his hands."You want to split that pumpkin pastie?"
I grinned and broke the cookie in half evenly. Well, pretty evenly anyway.
I handed Jem the piece that was a smidge smaller and he glared at me, making a grab for my half. We got caught in a wrestling match over the cookie, and soon both us plus the cookie ended up in the water, soaking both of us to the skin.
We were both laughing as our wrestling match turned into a splashing match. I saw some people staring at us as they passed out of the corner of my eye, but I didn't care. Being my best friend, Jem had known just how to lift my spirits.
"So what's your favorite class so far, Hollie?" George asked me at dinner.
I thought for a second.
"Don't tell me it's Potions." Fred said, looking horrified.
I rolled my eyes. "Hell no. Er...I'd have to say that my favorite class is Transfiguration. At least so far." I said and signed so that Jem could see from where he was sitting next to me.
Both of us had tried to dry off as much as possible, but our uniforms were wrinkled and still damp, and our hair was still dripping water. We were quite a sight, as George and Fred had pointed out as soon as we had sat down at the Gryffindor table.
"Eh, that class is too much thinking for me." George said, grinning.
"What's your favorite then?" I asked teasingly. "History of Magic? Don't have to do much thinking there, eh George?"
"Oooh...nice one, Hollie!" Fred reached across the table for a high-five, laughing.
"Thanks, Fred." I said, grinning.
Harry passed behind Fred then, not saying a word or making eye contact as he walked to the far end of the table with Ron, who looked apologetic.
I watched him as he passed, trying to stay mad.
He has never said anything like that before, should I just let it slide? I thought, biting my lip.
No, he made me feel absolutely awful. And the worst part is that he knew what he was doing, but continued anyway.
Jem put his arm around my shoulders, pointing at George and Fred, bringing me out of my reverie.
"How about we take you on a broom tomorrow before you have your Flying class?" George asked, looking extra-cheerful. He had probably picked up on the fact that Harry and I weren't speaking and was trying to cheer me up.
I grinned. "Definitely, George. That would be awesome."
A/N: I don't own any of J.K. Rowling's characters, just Hollie and Jem.
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