Chapter 2 : II- Grace
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The carriage was empty, something that usually determined whether I would sit down or not. I needed the time alone because it was normally guaranteed that some first years would join me once they discovered the rest of the carriages were full.
A long whistle sounded, telling the students on the platform the train was about to leave. They were now frantically trying to board the train, their hair billowing behind them as they leapt onto the carriages.
I sighed to myself and sank back into my seat- I was going for another year at Hogwarts, the place of history, the building of beauty and the hallways that stalked me in my nightmares. I needed to prepare myself for another year of taunting, laugher and hexes being thrown my way.
I heard loud laughter echoing around the corridor and sighed- I didn’t think they would find me this soon.
They were in hysterics over something Fred Weasley had just said, probably a story of one of his shags (that’s usually the subject) and almost bypassed my carriage completely. But at the last second Weasley turned his head and stopped.
He had very obviously come looking for me as I saw him get on the train extremely far away from my carriage, and let’s face it: even if every compartment was full, he would still manage to kick some poor little second year out of their compartment just so he didn’t have to walk far.
“Fawley, aren’t you going to thank me for the compliment I just gave you?”
“No.” The word left my mouth before I could stop it and I knew I had just doomed myself. Sometimes for a Ravenclaw, I could be extremely stupid.
“Sorry Fawley, I didn’t quite catch that.” The teasing had gone from his tone and he was now looking at me with a slight snarl on his otherwise handsome face. His chestnut hair was in its usual styled mess, and his brown eyes were narrowed.
I could see him walking forward towards me; his steps weren’t hesitant (when were they ever?) and he was still looking straight at me. It would take about another three steps and at the rate he was going, only around four seconds.
“I only offered you a nice friendly greeting and look how you treated me. You know, it’s very rude. Didn’t your parents ever teach you manners?”
He was so close now; close enough for me to see his face properly. Close enough for me to count the freckles on his face; close enough for him to hit me.
“Boo.” The sudden move forward made me jump and his friends laugh. “Awww, it’s no wonder you weren’t sorted into Gryffindor Fawley, you’re such a wimp.” The laughter that erupted from his mouth made me want to punch the smile off of his face- but I wasn’t brave enough for that and he knew it.
“See you later, Fawley.”
He slid the compartment door shut behind him and walked off down the corridor with his mates. I could still hear their laughter and the occasional “Did you see her face? Priceless.” echoing down the corridor. I let out a shaky breath and slid my head into my palms; his words were still ringing in my ears and I knew it would be a while before I forgot them.
The train had only just left the platform and yet I had already had my first encounter with James.
Just my fucking luck.
An encounter with James Potter and now this: an extremely awkward situation involving a topless me and a couple of terrified (yet still curious) first years.
Being the nerdy Ravenclaw stereotype, I decided (once I had pulled myself together after the whole James incident) that I should change into my robes now, so that I didn’t have to bother later. This at the time seemed like a perfect idea and, there was the added bonus of not having to go to the toilets on the train as this year no small eleven year olds had decided to sit with me.
I should have known that this was not going to end well (things like this never do) but I carried on regardless. It was at this point (when I had my skirt on but no shirt) that the compartment door slid open revealing two small first years who- may I point out- were gaping at me like there was no tomorrow.
So, here I am now, awkwardly standing here in just my bra while two small male eleven year olds are gaping at my breasts.
I should probably put on a shirt now instead of standing here like an incapable idiot.
Quickly, I picked up my shirt and pulled it on looking over to where they were standing.
They were both quite short (I swear the first years shrink every year), but the similarities ended there. The first one was stocky with quite broad shoulders (let’s hope he gets sorted into Ravenclaw, he had the perfect build for a beater and judging by his arms, quite a good aim) whereas the second was very skinny, with bucked teeth and a book in his arms (The standard book of spells: Grade one), he was also holding his wand in his hand and had a mop of brown hair covering his forehead. However I’m pretty sure he had good social skills (that or he was just very cocky) as he had that confident look in his eyes: another similarity with his friend.
“Sorry, we didn’t realise we were intruding.” I was right, he was confident; he spoke in a clear, reasonably loud voice and had now (thankfully) closed his mouth.
“Yeah,” The second one was speaking now, but was still staring at my chest.
“Errm, we’ll go before your boyfriend comes back. What he doesn’t know won’t hurt him, right?”
What boyfriend? I didn’t have a boy- fuck.
They think that I have a boyfriend. And that I was snogging him?
I almost wanted to laugh at the amount of stupidity these boys have. Isn’t it obvious I wouldn’t get a boyfriend in a million years? Mind you, they don’t really know the social standings at Hogwarts. They’re first years.
Me, the loner and sociopath Grace Fawley, with a boyfriend? It was never going to happen.
It was then I realised they were still looking at me expectantly. I thought they said they were going to leave.
“Yeah,” I paused for a bit, trailing off, “I don’t actually have a boyfriend.” I told them with a sheepish look, silently hoping they caught on and didn’t ask me why I was getting changed in the compartment.
“So you enjoy stripping for fun?” I take back what I said earlier, I don’t want the cocky beater in my house. He annoys me.
“N-n-no!” I spluttered. “I was getting changed.” I could feel my cheeks getting warmer by the second and hoped the boys would just run off frightened like normal first years.
“Aren’t there toilets for that? That’s where my brother said all the normal people change.” Great. The bookish one just insulted me. Knowing my luck his brother will walk in now and tell them to stay away from me because I was such a loser.
He didn’t, and to my surprise the small kid dropped his book on the floor and offered me his hand.
“Hi, my name’s Colin Creevey the second.” He spoke his name with pride, and I guess he had a reason. I remember the name from one of my History of Magic textbooks.
I’m pretty sure Colin Creevey fought in the Battle of Hogwarts, and was one of the people who lost their lives fighting against The Dark Lord. They were dubbed as ‘The Nations Bravest’ and each of the people who died had a grave by the Shrieking Shack. None of my family was mentioned, probably because we were (and unfortunately, still are) very much pro-pureblood. Only the worst Death Eaters got mentioned in the textbooks.
“Errm... Hi Colin, I’m Grace.” I smiled politely at him (although I’m pretty sure it was more of a grimace) and shook his hand.
This is the first time since my first year someone has actually introduced themselves to me so I was a bit rusty with all this ‘Hi my name’s Grace’ business.
Colin was looking at me weirdly, and I realised that I was still (vigorously) shaking his hand. Okay, so I was very rusty on the introducing myself front.
And I’m still shaking his hand.
“Oh, right. I’ll just,” I removed my hand from his and he looked relieved. Social situations aren’t my forte.
Colin’s beater friend looked a bit reluctant to say something to me (probably because he just saw the damage I did to Colin, or maybe it was the fact that he’s seen me in my bra. Either of the two seemed plausible.)
Maybe I should defuse the tension.
“Do you beat often?”
Great. That just made things even more awkward.
Do you beat often, it didn’t even make sense. It was no wonder people made fun of me. I can’t even string a proper sentence together because you know, a sentence makes sense.
“Errm, well my dad and I used to play Quidditch in the back garden a lot. But I’ve never actually played beater before.”
He understood me? Well, that was a first.
“That was...” annoying, weird, stupid? I was filling in the words that beater boy was trying to say in my head. It would lessen the blow.
“You think so?”
“Well yeah,” He was looking at me with his eyes wide open, and I noticed that Colin was too. “I’ve never seen someone be able to do something like that before. It was cool.”
“Really? That’s not what most people say.”
To be honest, it’s probably because I’ve only really blurted things out people don’t actually want to hear, instead of complimenting them like I did to beater boy.
“Why, what do they normally say?”
I grimaced at the memories.
“Well normally it’s ‘fuck off Fawley’ but occasionally they can be polite and offer a quick ‘piss off’ instead.”
“Oh.” He trailed off and stood in the doorway in silence, making me look at the floor.
This was awkward.
I'm guessing beater boy thought so too because he decided to diffuse the tension (A lot better than I managed to)
“Well, my name’s Finn, Finn Matthews. Can we sit in your compartment? That’s why we opened the door in the first place.”
I agreed and moved my stuff so that they could sit down; this was not how I imagined this would turn out. I started the train ride alone and have now managed to have an (almost) normal conversation with two people (So what if they were five years younger than me?)
It’s still an achievement.
A/N: So, it's another chapter.....
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