Chapter 6 : Potions Partner(s)
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Okeydokey, then. Here it is, chapter six! Enjoy!
Disclaimer: The world of Harry Potter belongs to J.K Rowling. (Obviously) As usual, no copyright infringement intended.
Lily still won’t talk to me. It’s been three days, and she still won’t fucking talk to me. Do you realize how awkward that makes it when you’re the only two sharing a dorm?
You can’t even imagine the sheer uncomfortableness that is insured to come when we both have to get into the bathroom at the same time.
I walked into potions, and took my seat. Gee, won’t this be fun. Being partners with Lily used to be a blast, until she decided to cut all communication between us. Granted, I was semi-responsible for this, but, I can’t take all the blame.
It’s not like I care, anyway.
“Don’t get too comfortable, kids, we’re going to be making some new seating arrangements,” an all too jolly voice called out. Professor Slughorn waddled into the room, grinning from ear to ear like a small child on Christmas morning.
Unhappy groans and grumbling broke out from several places around the classroom.
“Now, now, now. We’re changing seats. Everyone up to the front, please,” Slughorn waggled his finger, but his eyes were still twinkling cheerfully as he attempted to look reprimanding.
Lily looks over at me, wild terror reflecting in her emerald green eyes, argument momentarily forgotten in light of the newest problem. She could get partnered with Potter. Or even worse, with Snape.
He began calling out names. They mainly followed a boy/girl, Slytherin/Gryffindor pattern. Avery brushed up against me. I felt my eye twitch.
“We better be partners,” he whispered roughly as he surveyed the few people left that would be considered “acceptable” by pureblood standards.
So help me, God, we better not be partners. Anyone, even Black, would be better than Avery.
“Evans, Macinnis.” Lily looked relieved. Macinnis was an attractive Ravenclaw, the only one in our class. Most of the other Ravenclaws aren’t lucky enough to have double Potions with the Slytherins on Tuesday afternoons.
I do hope you noticed the sarcasm there.
Avery got paired with some random Gryffindor girl I don’t care to know the name of, leaving me with-
Potter and Black. I retract my earlier statement. Even Avery would be better than them.
“And that leaves, Potter, Black, and Altavilla. We’re short one, so you three’ll have to be a group,” he went on discussing the instructions for the day, but I tuned him out. Pepperup potions. Pft. I mastered those first year. A necessity when you’re trying to get through the days leading up to the full moon.
This time it was me who looked over at Lily with wide eyes. Her resolve wavered, sympathy and concern showing through for just a second, before her face steeled again. It was going to take a lot more than time to bridge the gap that had formed between us during the past three days.
Roughly half of the girls stared at me in awe, envious that I got not one, but both of the most popular Marauders as partners. The other half glared with such fierceness that it almost made me flinch. And I’m not the type to be intimidated easily.
I’ve learned over the years that the best way to deal with woo girls (Girls who fawn over ‘hot’ boys. Typically make an owl like ‘woo’ sound when they come within ten feet of one) is to smile sweetly and make a rude hand gesture. Works every time, just as long as a professor doesn’t happen to stroll by and catch you.
I was surprised to find that my legs had carried me to the table farthest away from the front of the classroom, without me telling them to, the one we had been assigned.
Whoever had the bright idea to put Black and Potter together? No wonder we’re in the back. Less collateral damage if they spontaneously decide to blow something up. I seriously (I really do hate that pun) wouldn’t put it past the two of them, especially with Snape sitting right in front of us.
Yeah, whoever had the bright idea to put Snape in front of Potter and Black, anyway? That’s just plain stupid. A cruel and unusually punishment for one of Slughorn’s favorites.
I sat down, in the seat as far away as possible from the other two.
The volume in the room increased rapidly as people jumped up to collect their supplies, and began to brew their potions, some chatting happily, others not so much.
A loud, extremely obvious silence settled cloak-like and heavy over our table.
“Well,” I said, turning slightly to look at both of them, “someone go fetch the supplies.”
“Padfoot,” James suggested, probably thinking that Sirius and I would most likely kill each other in the short time in which he was gone.
“I’m not a damn dog,” he grumbled under his breath. If I hadn’t been the one to instruct Sirius to do so, he probably wouldn’t have had a problem with it.
I just have a special effect on some people.
I tilted my head to the side, a habit I picked up a few years ago, appreciating just how ironic that statement was. He was, indeed, a dog, which is why I chose to use the word “fetch” in the first place.
I sighed deeply, and massaged the bridge of my nose, considering my options. I didn’t have very many, so, I settled on at least attempting to be somewhat civil towards them. It’s not like it would kill me.
At least, I don’t think it will.
Unfortunately, I’m not the best at making new acquaintances. You’re shocked, I know. I just always seem to have trouble articulating in a way that doesn’t make me sound like a complete bitch. I’m really not. A bitch, I mean. I just appear to be that way to most other kids my age. Standoffish and rebellious and sardonic and ridiculously blunt just for starters.
It’s really my sarcastic sense of humor that gets to people, though. Half the time, I don’t even mean what I say. I guess it’s just hard to distinguish when I’m being one hundred percent honest. Which is not very often, just in case you were wondering.
I pointed my wand at the cauldron in front of me, filling it with the required amount of water. I didn’t even need to think about it. I had the directions memorized, but I pretended to gaze intently at my book every once in a while, just to keep up appearances. If the other kids knew the true extent of my genius, I’d be bugged about brewing them illegal potions non-stop for the rest of my school-career.
“Crush this,” I pushed a mandrake root towards James. I was perfectly capable of doing it myself, but I was growing tired of the two of them “subtly” watching me out of the corners of their eyes. How obvious can you get?
Well, they do call themselves Moony, Wormtail, Prongs, and Padfoot. I’m honestly not quite sure the word “subtle” is even included in their vocabularies.
Surprisingly, he did as I told him to without making any smart comments in return. I threw all the ingredients into the cauldron, and stirred it a couple times, completely ignoring the directions now. You can save yourself thirty minutes by stirring clockwise three and a half times instead of counter-clockwise seventeen times.
Don’t ask me how exactly I know this. It involved a lot of miniature explosions, almost-fires, and inhaling slightly noxious gases on more than one occasion.
I turned out alright in the end, though. At least, I’m pretty sure there wasn’t any lasting damage. Lily’s cat, Lion, did glow in the dark slightly for a couple days, but, she still doesn’t know about that.
I peered into the cauldron. The potion was a sheer and glimmering, dark wine color. I could see my reflection. I slid a few vials out of my bag, and filled them with a quick wave of my wand. James and Sirius openly watched me, now, curious as to what I was doing.
Once I had the vials filled, I altered the level of water by a fractional amount. The potion lightened. I slid two of the three towards James and Sirius, not to be friendly, but to keep them from ratting me out to Slughorn.
James nodded, impressed, while Sirius looked on warily, still uncertain about my motives. We would still get an excellent grade, but we would also gain a perfectly brewed potion, and Slughorn would be none the wiser.
I shrugged, looking at James, “I’ve been doing that for years now. It’s really not that impressive.”
“I probably wouldn’t be talking to us, Altavilla, who knows what your little friends would think,” Sirius said sourly, giving me another one of the glares he reserved especially for me. I held his gaze evenly through analyzing eyes.
Sirius Black confused me. He acted as if he hated me, it wasn’t hard to believe at all, yet he helped me get to the hospital wing when I couldn’t get there myself. He separated himself from his family, but I know for a fact he still meets up with Regulus to talk on occasion. He pretends that he likes having half the school fawning over him, regardless, I’ve seen the hint of uncomfortable embarrassment in his eyes that mirror my own. Yes, Sirius puzzled me, I just couldn’t figure him out. Every time I thought I had it, he would do something to upset my carefully crafted preconceptions.
“Actually,” I said evenly, “I don’t really care about what they think. It’s not like my siblings control me. They just like to think they do.”
“That doesn’t make any-”
“I wouldn’t talk to blood-traitor filth like him, Clio,” Snape interrupted, turning away from his table with a sneer.
“I wouldn’t talk to slime like Snivellus, Clio,” Sirius shot back immediately. Snape bristled at the mention of his nickname, and drew his wand. I rolled my eyes at his stupidity, casting a shield charm over our table silently. It shimmered in the air, not quite invisible. I gave him a warning stare, cobalt eyes glinting dangerously.
It’s not like I’m itching for a fight, but I’ll take the Marauders’ sides over Snape’s any day, mainly because of what he put Lily through last year. I don’t think she’s fully gotten over it yet. She might not ever. He looks at me, then to Sirius, and then back at me again. I watched a look of horror dawning on his face, and I’ll admit, I was confused.
“Ohhh. I get it now. Isn’t one Black enough for you?”
“I’ve seen the way you look at each other. You can’t fool me. I wonder what your boyfriend is going to think when he hears this,” Snape said, responding instantly to the look on my face.
I’m convinced now. Snape is a raving lunatic.
“Listen closely, Snape, because I’m only going to say this once. Sirius doesn’t like me. I definintly don’t like him. At all. Not even as a friend. I actually dislike him. A lot,” Sirius is still too shocked at Snape’s accusation to help me out. He’s sitting there, mouth gaping, like a fish.
“Ouch,” Sirius muttered in mock hurt, finally managing to pull himself together.
You’re a real help, Black.
“Mhmmm. Sure you do, sure you do,” Snape turned back to his cauldron smirking widely. I groaned. He’ll run to my brother, who will tell my sister, who will no doubt tell Bellatrix, who will feel obligated to inform Regulus. And of course they’ll be writing my mother about it. Can’t forget that part.
I’m over. Done. Through.
Oh my Godric.
“Smooth,” James concludes quietly, looking at both of us, and nodding, “very smooth.”
I have a bad feeling about this.
And the plot thickens…DUN…DUN…DUN!
Well, what did you think? Don’t hesitate to tell me all about it, good or bad. I would really love to hear from you. Anything from a simple :) to a paragraph or two would absolutely just make my day. Really, it would.
Anyways, by the time you’re reading this, chapter seven should be almost done. There may or may not be some dueling in it…. Hehe.
Thanks again for reading!
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