“Yeah, Chase the Face?”
“Will you do that cute braid thingy on my hair for me?”
Rose whips around quickly, taking her toothbrush out of her mouth, “You only have me do your hair on special occasions. Why is another day of motivational classes special enough for the cute braid thingy?”
“I just want to look nice is all,” I shrug, “Plus, it’ll make my hair all wavy for my date tonight with Louis.”
My best friend spits toothpaste all over my face, “YOU’RE GOING OUT WITH LOUIS? WHY WAS I NOT INFORMED? MERLIN, I THOUGHT YOU TWO STILL HATED EACH OTHER!”
I shrug for the second time this morning, “We made up and made out. I would have told you last night, except when I came in you were already asleep. Who goes to sleep at six o’clock, anyways?”
“Over-worked pregnant girls,” Rose says indignantly.
“Oh,” I sit down and look up at her with my best sad look, “Will you please help me look pretty for your kinsmen?”
She can’t hold back a giggle, “Sure. After all, it’s not every day you get a veela boyfriend!”
I roll my eyes modestly and she does my hair, along with forcing me to wear a very excessively effective push-up bra.
“Rose! I am not wearing this!” I shout to her as I try to shove my usually nonexistent boobs back into my tank top.
She pouts, “Please? It’ll be so fun to make Louis have a stroke in the middle of the divination classroom!”
I groan, “Fine. But only because you have a child inside you and I feel bad.”
She smiles big, “Yay! I knew this embryo would come in handy!”
“No, really, Louis, you have to try this water!” James is exclaiming to his best friend just as Rose and I walk into the classroom.
Louis sighs, “Fine, fine. Although I don’t see how this kind of water would taste any different than any other brand—“
As he takes a sip out of the fancy water bottle, his eyes drift over to where I’ve just walked in and he spews it all over James.
“What the hell, man?” James shouts before turning around to see what Louis is looking at, “Oh, hey, Chase is finally showing off the twins!”
Louis elbows James hard and suddenly finds interest in the floorboards.
And I’m just over here blushing like mad, pretending I didn’t see all that.
“Namaste, children!” Trelawney crows as she saunters in, “It’s time for our next activity!” Taking out her wand, she waves it and mouths an enchantment, “I have charmed the room to directly relate your ability to balance with the balance of your own personal lives. Basically, if you’re unhappy, you fall. Now, flamingos everyone!” She demonstrates by grabbing one of her legs and balancing perfectly on the other one.
Everyone looks around uncomfortably, but we do the exercise. I carefully grab my ankle and pick up my leg. To my relief I stay balanced, though I am wobbly.
I look around the room to see how everyone else is. Hugo is flawlessly balanced and trying to have a conversation with Lily and Roxanne, both of whom are struggling to stay standing. To my shock, Rose only has a wobble just like I do, as do Louis, Albus, Lysander and Lucy. Freddie and Lorcan are as perfect as Hugo and Trelawney. The only two who seem to have absolutely no balance whatsoever are James and Maylin. They keep tipping over completely.
Finally, James grunts and stops trying. Instead, he walks over to Maylin and angrily says, “Just this once,” before pulling her up into a heated, long lasting kiss. He then pulls away and walks back to his spot, leaving Maylin standing there speechless.
Needless to say, neither of them had trouble balancing after that. Although they did start to violently avoid eye contact with everyone, especially each other.
“Okay, okay, that’s all with that,” Professor Trelawney is obviously confused at the sudden PDA, “The next thing we’ll be doing is another partner activity. You are going to find your partners and tell each other where you see yourselves in five years. This should help you to figure out what priorities to focus on in your life now. You may begin!”
I walk over to Louis, really happy to be with him but also feeling awkward because thanks to Rose there is a lot of me being shown that should stay inside a shirt.
“Um, hi,” he coughs.
“Yeah, yeah, I know. My boobs. It’s Rose’s fault, so just keep your eyes up here,” I joke, and his laughter eases the awkwardness.
“So,” he looks into my eyes and the cuteness of his face kind of makes me want to faint, “Where do you see yourself in five years?”
“I have no idea. It’s actually really terrifying how little I know what I want to be. Especially when my best friend has her entire life planned out, even with the surprise baby attack.”
“Yeah,” he bites his lip and I try not to sigh out loud, “It’s… rough not knowing for sure what you want to do with your life.”
Suddenly, I remember something I hadn’t noticed yesterday (I was too busy trying to punch his adorable face), “When you got The Stone, you said you didn’t know if you wanted to be Minister of Magic anymore. Why? I thought you had it all figured out.”
Louis chuckles halfheartedly, “When you grow up with your mum always telling you what you’re supposed to be, it can be easy to believe. But that’s just… not me.”
I look at him sadly, “What about your plan?”
He looks surprised, “You remembered that?”
I open my mouth to respond but I’m interrupted by the Yoga Professor, “Okay, students, that’s more than enough time to discuss your hopes and dreams! Gather back in the circle, please. And stay near your partners,” I do this gladly, “What we shall do next requires that I teach you a very advanced spell. I would not be risking this if I had not made sure beforehand that every child here is a capable young sorcerer. If performed correctly, you will be enchanting your partner to fall into a deep sleep. Once in this sleep, they will have dreams of what they truly love or desire,” she looks at a watch that is literally just drawn onto her wrist with a sharpie, “Hmm. We only have time for one partner. But if you wish you can come in after lunch; I’ll just postpone yoga with Albus,” the Potter boy groans, and then blushes.
Trelawney continues, “The thing that makes this spell so special is that it accesses not only your own memory, but the memory of those you love or desire. This means that your head will be filled with not only thoughts from your head but also the memories of the people you want most,” With that, she teaches us the spell. It’s simple enough, but I know that I’ll probably muck it up somehow.
I give Louis a look. He smiles and says, “Let me guess, you don’t want to be the one to perform the spell?”
“Your head is far too cute to accidentally combust. Besides, this is more in the Charms area, and the only subject I’m not crap at is D.A.D.A. I think you’ll probably be far more successful.”
He puts his hand on my head and ruffles my hair like I’m a little kid, “Don’t worry, I won’t make your head combust. Also, you might want to pull your shirt up, because Hugo is starting to drool.”
I quickly follow his advice. I wink up at him, “Don’t act like you didn’t like it.”
“Hey, I didn’t say anything. In fact, I think you left the entire male population of the room unable to say anything.”
That’s when I get mad because I’m blushing again. What’s up with me getting the blushies this term??
“Just take out your wand so I can sleep already,” I mumble, most groups in the room already had a sleeping person.
I lay down on the floor and he takes out his wand. Carefully, he says the enchantment and waves his wand over my head.
Instantly, my brain slows down and my eyelids feel heavy. Next thing I know, everything is black.
Slowly, words and images begin fading in an out of my vision, some through my eyes and some from the thoughts of others. It gets to the point where I can’t think; only hear the words and voices and memories, in no apparent order, just jumbled and beautiful.
“Of course I have a plan”. “I’ll tell you someday, okay?”
I look down at Chase, excitement coursing through me. Was she actually saying that she wanted to be friends with benefits with me? It wasn’t everything I wanted, but I still couldn’t believe this, “It is?” “Well, um, yeah,” she says and then quickly continues, “But, like, just as friends of course. That casual type of thing.” I can’t help it. I turn and look into her eyes and I just have to kiss her.
But that’s how Rose is; without her class, she’s nothing. That’s why she’s the protagonist and I’m the sidekick. Rose pulls back from the hug, her eyes watering slightly and a smile creeping onto her face, “You mean you want to keep the baby? And stay with me?”
“No! Fine, you got me this time,” he crosses his arms and pouts, but then begins to stifle a smirk, “I can’t say anything sweet, but can I say something spicy?”
“Well that hurt,” I say. She’d scared me and made me fall off my own fucking broomstick! However, I’m now very aware of the fact that my head is on her lap, and I look up into her big, light brown eyes just as she says, “Fuckin’ Wonderboy! Don’t scare me like that!”
I don’t know how, but I was still laughing. I, who five minutes ago wasn’t sure if I still even possessed the ability to smile, was on a giggling rampage. Louis Weasley, a popular, athletic, seventeen year old boy, was obsessed with One Direction. This was pure gold. I decided right then that I would never tell anybody, not even him, about this. It was too sweet to share, this moment of just sudden happiness and laughter. This moment that could only have been caused by something having to do with Louis, of course. I eventually tire myself out, and crawl into his bed. It smelled the same as his bed back at Hogwarts, but it was much more comfortable. I turned the light off, closed my eyes, and tried to block out all the bad thoughts.
After our light chuckles die out, he’s silent for a second like he’s thinking about something before he speaks again, “I wasn’t going to do it, you know. I wasn’t going to let you go all the way with me today.” “Thanks,” I hug Wonderboy, the superhero of the day, and he doesn’t even need to ask why.
But why do I always chicken out? We have fun together, for all I know she could like me back that way. Before I know it, I’m leaning over her, lightly pressing my lips to hers, both of which are still slightly salty from the seawater. It’s nice and sweet, and it feels right somehow. I pull away, and her eyes are fluttering closed. She was falling asleep, and probably wouldn’t remember it. I decide it’s probably for the best; maybe her not remembering our first kiss was a sign that I shouldn’t like-like her. Looking at her, though, I shake my head and realize that’s not possible. Lying back down, I close my eyes and also doze off. After a nap of maybe five minutes, I’m awoken by a rough tap on my shoulder. “Tag,” Chase laughs at me, “You’re it,” she runs off back into the waves. Smiling, I do what I always do. I chase after her.
I take a moment to consider this. I knew Danny was right, of course, but there was something he’d said that had caught my notice. He’d said that I love Louis. I’ve used the word before, but with much lighter connotations. Do I love Louis? Okay, I think we all know the answer to that one.
I jolt awake, sitting straight up and gasping for air. I find myself hyperventilating, but Louis is instantly at my side.
“Hey, Chase, are you okay?” He tries to calm me down, “What is it?”
I catch my breath, and take a second to remember where I am, “I just—I don’t know. That was weird.”
Louis is obviously trying not to smile, but he just can’t help it, “Did you… Did you dream about me?”
I easily grin back at him, “Yes. A lot.”
“You want to talk about it?”
“How about tonight?” I say, unable to hold back the edge of excitement in my voice. I still couldn’t get over how happy I was about the date, and the fact that I now knew the sweet story of Louis being my real first kiss I was even more ecstatic.
My smile falters when I realize something. I hadn’t only dreamed memories of Louis. I’d seen Danny, too, both through my own eyes and through his, just like Louis. There weren’t as many of him as there were of Louis, but the fact that there were any was a very big deal. I really want to talk to Rose about this.
“Where’s Rose?” I ask. I see her looking bored next to a sleeping Maylin.
Maylin jerks awake, and I notice that the instant she’s conscious she glances nervously in James’s direction. She probably didn’t realize that he’d been looking at her since he woke up, too. The stupid, reluctant lovebirds obviously both had nothing but memories of each other. They really need a good, heavy, cliché broom closet snog, because this whole trying to avoid each other thing is starting to give me a chronic headache.
“I just can’t believe you’re not over Danny!” Rose whispers loudly before shoving a giant forkful of macaroni salad into her mouth. We were at lunch, but had made sure to sit at the end of the Gryffindor table by ourselves so we could talk about this. I did not want Louis finding this out like that.
“I am over him!” I argue, “My subconscious just doesn’t know it yet.”
“Well you better get over him! I’ve already decided in my head that February 3rd is officially National Chase and Louis’s First Date Day. I was even thinking about making it an international holiday.”
I sigh, “Should I tell Louis about this tonight? I really don’t want to ruin it, so I won’t tell him. I would tell him the day after, but I also don’t want to ruin the day after our first date. And if the date is good we’ll probably have another one later this week, so I can’t tell him then. I can’t tell him all next week, because who does something like that on the week leading up to Valentine’s Day? And then if I wait two weeks to tell him, it’ll just seem suspicious, so I might as well just not tell him at all.”
Rose is staring at me, “Wow. If I knew you were so easy to convince we would be in a rock band called Bleu Cheese Monday.”
“It’s not that I don’t think the name is lovely, it’s just that neither of us have any musical talent!”
“Hey! I’m a skilled piano player—“
“No you’re not,” James smiles as he plops down next to me, “You can’t even play Hot Cross Buns right.”
“Shut up,” Rose crosses her arms indignantly, “That’s a complex piece of music.”
I groan and begin to repeatedly bang my head on the table.
“What’s wrong with her?” James asks.
Rose begins to reply, “In her dream she—“
“No!” I sit up and quickly throw a bread roll at my best friend, “Don’t tell him!”
“Ouch,” she rubs her forehead, “You could have just said so. No need to throw baked goods.”
“Besides,” I look at the Potter boy suspiciously, “He’s only here because Maylin is sitting by Louis and he’s trying to avoid her at all costs.”
“I don’t love her, okay?” James exclaims a little bit too defensively.
Rose shrugs smugly and takes on an eerily spot-on Trelawney impersonation, “The Stone never lies, child!”
James and I both shudder; that was weird.
“But—but, what if my feelings changed directly after saying that?”
I roll my eyes, “You SO love her. Why are you avoiding it?”
“I don’t want things to be different,” he frowns and looks at the table, “I’ve seen how she is with guys. At the beginning of a relationship she gets all excited and fluttery at the thought of him. But then every time we hang out she gets less and less interested, and then moves on to the next guy. She’ll probably just do that to me, and then we can’t be friends like we are once we’re broken up.”
Rose and I can’t help but burst into laughter. When James give us an extremely confused look, Rose explains, “Honey, does what Maylin does with guys sound familiar at all? Maybe like exactly how you are with girls? You said that every time you hang out she gets less interested, have you not realized that it’s because in her eyes they’re becoming less and less of what she wants in comparison to you? She’s in love with you. It’s plain to see.”
James opens his mouth like he’s about to say something, but then stays quiet.
Rose smirks, “That’s what I thought. So, if you don’t mind, Chase has a date and I’m going back to Trelawney’s class with Maylin so I can have a psycho dream, goodbye my silly cousin.”
I walk Rose to the staircase of the Divination Tower, and after she leaves I have an entire hour and a half before my date. I decide that I should probably find Wonderboy and talk to him about Macey. I’m still pretty damned mad about that.
I knew that Scorpius had Runes Club around this time on Tuesdays, so I figure Danny is probably hanging out with the burnouts. What? All schools have the tripped-out kids; Hogwarts is obviously not an exception. They basically just hang out in the courtyard and smoke crushed bezoars; admittedly most of the burnouts are Hufflepuffs (think about it: Huff-le-puffs? Head of house is the herbology teacher? Their animal is a fucking badger?). Wonderboy doesn’t get high with them, he just likes to hang out and talk about philosophy or whatever.
I walk easily into the courtyard over to the burnouts who are in about three or four little groups, each of about five people, under a huge olive tree. As I walk over my friend Luke Conway, a good looking seventh year with an everlasting goofy grin on his face, sees me and instantly wraps his arms around my torso and pulls me into a really tight and personal hug, “Chase! I never see you around anymore!”
Luke and I had become good friends when we were potions partners in third year. To be honest, I kind of had quite the crush on him back then, but that was before I realized that despite his cute face and surprising intellect he would go nowhere in life; he was kind of the unofficial leader of the burnouts, and he just didn’t care enough.
“Hi, Luke,” I smile up at him, the attractiveness of his face battling with the strong smell of bezoar smoke coming off his clothes.
“You know, Chase,” he puts his arm around me, “I always liked you. If you ever want a place in my business, just say the word and you’ll start off at the very top.”
“Err, no thanks,” I blush, “I would be terrible at, y’know, selling drugs.”
“Alright,” he winks, “Just call me if you ever change your mind. It’s good money. Did you need something?”
“Yes,” I say quickly, “Is Danny here?”
“You mean you didn’t just come here to see me?” He flirts jokingly like he always has with me, “Nah, I’m kidding. Yeah, Danny’s right over there with Leo and Chloe,” he uses his thumb to point, and I see Wonderboy sitting there laughing with two kids that are smoking.
“Thanks, Luke!” I give my old friend another hug and walk over to Danny.
He grins when he sees me, “Baby Buns! What are you doing here?”
“Can I talk to you?”
“Sure,” he shrugs and gets up. As he walks over so that we can talk alone, I look him over again and again trying to figure it out. What is it about him that is keeping me from just completely and totally loving Louis alone? Why is it that a little piece of me still wants him?
Once he reaches me, I try and think of something to say, but for some reason my first instinct is to slap him.
“Ow,” he brings his hand up to his cheek, “What the hell was that for?”
I know that I can’t tell him I’m angry at him for being in my dream, so I think of my other perfectly good reason to be mad at him, “You slept with Macey Ackerly just to spite me.”
Guilt is instantly on his face, and his voice is sad, “Who told you?”
“Oh,” he looks at the ground, and then up at me, “So… What now?”
I realize I hadn’t really planned this out very well, “Um, I don’t know. I guess I’ll leave now. I have to get ready for a date with Louis,” it’s not until I see the look on his face that I see just how much that hurts him.
I knock on the door of the seventh year boys’ dormitory.
“She’s here!” I hear James whisper loudly from inside, “Stop fidgeting with your hair!”
I hear Louis coughing, and then his voice also in a hushed whisper, “James! Stop spraying all that cologne on me! She’s going to think I’m a gigolo!”
“That just means you need more cologne! She might have some cash on her!”
“For Merlin’s sake, this is our first date! I’m not selling her my body!”
“Are you suggesting that you would consider prostitution on, say, your fourth date?”
“No! Just put the cologne down!”
I cough, “You know, you guys aren’t very effective whisperers.”
James shushes Louis, “Dude, I think she heard us!”
“Be quiet! She obviously heard us!” Louis opens the door with a nervous smile, “Uhm, sorry about that. James is a git.”
“No, it’s fine,” I smile, and reach into my purse, “Will I have to pay for the date too? Or just the bedding process?”
Louis’s face goes red and James guffaws behind him, “Ah, man, she heard you call yourself a gigolo!”
“Obviously,” I roll my eyes, and then grin. Louis looks fantastic. I mean, he looks fine
. And yes, I just said that. Great, I should stop thinking now, “Okay, Louis, let’s go.”