Chapter 4 : A Curiosity
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Rita didn’t particularly want to do this job. Every time she had been on a boat it resulted in her getting sea sick and having her Green as Grass couture jacket damaged would do nothing to please her.
Then there was the destination this boat was taking her too. The low-security area of Azkaban. Given how mentally insane both Cho Chang and Lavender Brown were, she strongly disagreed with placing them there. After this article was published she wouldn’t be surprised if they tried to break out of the fortress and hunt her down while she was sleeping.
Finally, the lack of entertainment given to her on her journey did not please Rita in the slightest. Being forced to just sit here for hours was not fun. The boatman kept on snorting loudly, and Rita didn’t want to venture too near to him in the case of catching some sort of infectious disease.
The man kept on rowing for several minutes before the rock fortress appeared out of the sea. He navigated them into the harbour, and when they reached there he snorted and gestured with his arms that she should get out. Rita merely glared at him in return and certainly did not thank him for that ungracious service he attempted to provide. From now on, the only travel she would be taking would be first class.
A guard came to meet and blithered about this precaution and this rule when visiting the prison. He kept on talking about special circumstances and only due to the large donations given to him and his wife was this going ahead. Rita felt as if he missed the point. The circumstances were only special because of her being here. Rita was a star and could bring this prison to fame and fortune if she wanted to, so she should be treated accordingly.
He marched her along the deserted corridors before depositing her in a room where Cho and Lavender sat with their best attempt at looking angelic. “Welcome, Rita. What a pleasure it is to see you here,” Lavender simpered, and this was followed by a nod from Cho.
“How wonderful it is to see you too,” Rita replied, trying to inject a happy tone into her voice. The nicer she was the more they spilt. It was a tried and tested technique. “Obviously, you’ve gone through a very troubling and upsetting time recently do you have anything to say about that?”
“Only that we’re extremely sorry for any upset we have may have caused to the honourable Ministry of Magic and those who attended as a guest that evening. We are very ashamed of ourselves that they were forced to witness the spat between Lavender and myself. It was over a minor thing and never should have been brought to light,” Cho said sincerely.
Rita scribbled down her pathetic statement. That could be twisted into something scandalous relatively easily. After all, ever since her new boss at The Quibbler usurped the previous one scandal was all the rage apparently.
“Yes, and I would also like to add that though I may have been screaming about my love for one Ronald Weasley during the hearing, I only view him as a friend,” Lavender said, blushing scarlet. That was always a sign of a blatant lie being told, Rita thought. “Being there put me under immense pressure and anything came out of mouth without prior thought to it. I apologise for any offence I may have caused him.”
Cho nodded at Lavender before speaking up. “Yes, and I’m also sorry for sending death threats to Ginny Weasley, Neville Longbottom and darling Lavender. They were only meant to be a joke.”
Rita gave a small glare at Cho at the point. Even though she took things to the extremes, she didn’t believe death threats could ever be found funny.
“How did you two manage to get over that infamous fight at the Ministry?” Rita asked.
“We realised that true love should never stand in the path of friendship. As our goal is similar we thought fighting together would be better than fighting against the other.” Lavender’s face glowed with happiness while saying that.
Pff, there was no room for loyalty and love in the real world, Rita thought bitterly before continuing with her questions. “So, when do you think you’ll be out of Azkaban?”
Both of them looked down at the ground at that point, and saying that there were blushing scarlet would be an understatement.
“We’re not entirely sure. We have to serve three months for assaulting one another, another month for causing disturbances at the Ministry and then two and a half months for causing a ruckus in the courtroom. Then they may put more on top of that, so we can’t really say,” Cho replied.
“We have been good though,” Lavender announced eagerly. “I’ve been giving fashion advice to the inmates and Cho’s been giving them lessons to improve their IQ by 30%, even I’m taking part in that.”
Their inane babbling continued on for several hours, neither one knowing when enough had been said. Unfortunate for them, but not for the article, Rita thought gleefully. She gave them a brief hug before leaving. Normally, physical contact was off limits as it them think they were friends but after the fallout of this she needed to do it to keep her life safe. All she had to do now was report back to the boss.
Rita stepped into the darkened room and hesitantly placed the final copy of her article on the boss’ desk. The breezy air to The Quibbler had long disappeared ever since the new person had come along, but with them brought gossip galore and that was what Rita thrived on.
“There’s the final article on Cho and Lavender. We may need to put in place safeguards which would protect us from uprisings from the pair of them once they’re out of Azkaban,” Rita said tentatively.
The chair which the boss was sitting in swivelled around slowly revealing her sitting there stroking a lilac coloured pygmy puff. “Thank you, Rita,” the boss replied. “Cho and Lavender deserve this for saying that Nargles and the Crumple-Horned Snorkacks don’t exist.”
Rita tried to quell the laughter rising in her throat. No wonder they called her Loony Lovegood. To be a successful evil person you needed a white cat, or even a white rabbit, not a mere pygmy puff. Besides, that Nargle nonsense was equivalent to Goblins talking as far as she was concerned.
“Yes, revenge is sweet,” Luna continued. “Especially when the people you give it to don’t expect it in the slightest.”
Luna gave Rita an evil grin which caused shivers to travel down her spine. Even if a gossip galore was taking place at The Quibbler, looking for a new job might be the better option. Seeing that look certainly did make her worried about who would face the brunt of Luna’s revenge next. Perhaps rearing pygmy puffs would be nicer job.
A/N: This is the final chapter of Snapshots and I hoped you enjoyed it! It was so much fun to write when in mid-exam season (luckily it's over now!), though probably not the most productive way to spend my time! I would love to hear what you thought of this chapter so if you left a review it would be great! ♥