Wonderful Ci by azimuth @ tda ^^
Gryffindor Dorms, Sixth Year.
“Lucy, you’re mad and lacking in common sense,”
I was telling this firmly to my pretty friend, staring deep into her hazel eyes to get my message across. She just leant forward and licked me on the nose. I squealed.
“Don’t listen to her!” Rose said, leaping up off Lucy’s unmade bed and walking over, “She’s just a spoilsport. You’ll look fabulous! Trust me,”
Lucy gave me a happy look, and wrapped her arm around Rose’s shoulder, kissing her on the cheek. Lucy was a very uninhibited and physical person. She has hugged me while completely naked on more than one occasion.
“I think so,” she said, sharing a nod with Rose. I shook my head, raised my hands in sign of defeat, and went over to sit on Lucy’s bed, muttering about their insanity under my breath.
Lucy wanted to dye her hair purple. She came up with this preposterous idea courtesy of Rose, who was bored and wanted some excitement in her life, and who was just as mad as her dark – for now – haired friend.
“Rose,” Lucy ordered grandly, pulling off her shirt, “get the dye.” She turned to towards me, “Ivy, get the comb. Stop scowling or I’ll pin you down and dye your hair too.”
We set ourselves up in the small Dormitory bathroom, Lucy shirtless, towel wrapped around her shoulders and head over the sink, Rose standing poised with a bright bottle of Madame Marigolds’ Magical Mix of purple coloured hair dye. I was standing close by, comb in hand, finding this a lot more fun than I wanted to.
It was a messy process, dyeing Lucy’s hair. She had it cut short, to her chin, but it was curly and dark and Rose and I couldn’t tell where there was dye and were there wasn’t. In the end, Rose just ended up dumping the entire bottle in middle of her head and rubbing. Hard. Lucy swore into the sink with eyes scrunched tight.
“Oi, Gitbricks!” She would snap (Lucy had a very original way of putting together swearwords and insults. The logic of it escaped us all) “It’s all over my face! I’m going to have a purple face!”
“Do you want to do it?” Rose would snarl back, giving Lucy’s hair an unnecessarily hard tug. “Because it’s a lot harder than you’d think!”
And so on and so forth.
Finally, we figured that the Magical Mix must have reached every hair on her head by now, so I carefully combed it all back and I spiralled my wand around her head, muttering a protection charm. Then we scrubbed at Lucy’s face till it was red instead of purple, and all three of us leant back against various tiled surfaces, breathing heavily.
“I am never,” Rose muttered, wiping a smudge of purple off her brow, “becoming a hairdresser. Or a cook. Or anything that requires functioning under high stress levels.”
“Or a healer,” Lucy added, feeling the layer of air my charm had trapped around her hair with an amused expression on her face.
“Or an auror,” I chipped in, reaching over to feel the air bubble myself.
“Or a teacher,” Rose said, with a scared look. We all shuddered, shaking our heads.
“May Merlin have mercy on their souls,” Lucy murmured, walking out of the bathroom. Rose and I followed, pointing out all the different spots of purple on each other’s faces. I had a feeling that I was going to be sick of this shade before Lucy even washed it out.
The two other girls who shared Lucy’s dorm had entered in the time we had been in the bathroom. Jasmine was short and redheaded and covered in freckles and Amy tanned and good-looking. They took in Lucy’s funny hair and half nakedness without even flinching; I assumed they were simply used to this kind of thing by now.
“You died your hair?” Amy asked Lucy nonchalantly, pulling off her muddy Quidditch boots with sigh.
“Yeah.” Lucy answered.
“Purple?” Asks Amy.
And that was that.
“How was practice?” I asked Amy, going to sit on Lucy’s bed and resting my head against one of the posts.
“Hell,” the blonde answered, shaking her pretty head, “It was hell, Ivy. Thank your stars you don’t have bloody James Potter as a captain. How’s your team going?”
“Pretty good,” I answered with a shrug, “More than good, actually. You better bring your A game this Saturday,” I grinned, “I say this in the friendliest way possible.”
“No offence taken,” Amy replied, smiling and pulling her golden hair up into a bun. She was so effortlessly good-looking, it almost made me jealous. I wanted a tan like that too. I wondered how the school would take to me lying naked on top of the Astronomy tower.
Not too well, I was guessing.
Lucy’s bottle of dye told her to keep it in for twenty minutes before washing it out, so we waited around in the dorm until her time was up. Amy and Jasmine left to go to dinner, leaving just the three of us sprawled out on Lucy’s double bed.
“You do realize that we’ll be walking into the hall right in the middle of dinner, right?” I pointed out, humour in my tone. “Not one soul is going to miss the fact that you have an eggplant on your head.”
“It’s more of a dark plum colour, according to Madame Marigold,” Lucy answered tartly, “And Rosie thinks it will be wonderful, don’t you Rose?”
“You’ll look sexual, my dear,” Rose answered, pulling at a piece of her own brightly coloured hair, “Boys will come running from all directions.”
“Maybe we should all dye our hair purple then,” I said, laughing. I moved across a little so my head was resting on Rose’s stomach, “We could all do with some manly attention right now, I think.”
“Sadly, all the boys in this place are moronic, sexual turnips,” Rose sighed, shaking her head, “even Al made a lewd comment the other day. I was shocked.”
“What was it?” I asked her, grinning. I could not picture Al doing anything of the kind. Al was even more innocent that I when it came to sex and all things similar.
“He said that Fiona King’s skirt looked very flattering on her.”
“Lewd?” Lucy sounded appalled at the fact that Rose had even dared label Al’s comment with that word.
“Lewd for Al,” Rose corrected, chuckling. “Come on, Plum, it’s time to wash out that hair. Boys will run. Trust me.”
“I thought they were all moronic, sexual turnips?” Lucy said, raising an eyebrow and standing up. We all walked back over the bathroom, wearily picking up our respective protective towels.
The rinsing was less painful than the dying, and involved much less swearing. Finally, when the water ran clear out of Lucy’s hair, she gave it a shake, making Rose and I squeal and jump back to avoid the droplets.
A quick drying spell left Lucy’s new hair soft and curly, and purple. Very purple. Far more purple than I would imagine a dark plum being.
“Did we get the wrong packet?” Lucy asked us nervously, tugging at the end of a violet strand.
“It must take a couple of washes to go normal,” Rose assured her, ruffling the top of her curly head. She wrapped her arms around Lucy’s neck and rested her chin on her shoulder. “It still looks good, dear. Don’t worry.”
Lucy grinned, kissed Rose on the cheek, and turned around to face the both of us. “Dinner?” she asked. We nodded.
The setting of the Great Hall had been changed after The Dark War.
Apart for formal events like the sorting and end of year feast, all four tables in the Great Hall were now open to all houses. Most kids tended to stick to their official spots anyway, but there were also some groups who moved around a bit. We were one of those groups, and tonight, we found Al, Orin and Frankie sitting at what was normally the Hufflepuff table.
Whispers did follow us all the way over to the boys, though mainly just because Lucy was such an attractive, outgoing person and everyone seemed to know her – and like her – to some extent. Despite the surprised glances, my energetic friend just walked proudly along, with something close to strut, grinning at anyone who looked her way.
“Heya,” Al greeted when we reached their spot at the table. Lucy slid in between Orin and Frankie and Rose took a seat on one side of Al, leaving me the other.
There was a short, heavy silence as my friends and I filled our plates up with dinner.
“Say, Luc?” Orin said after a while, shooting the girl a sideways glance, “is that a bit of purple I see in your hair?”
“Yes,” responded Lucy proudly, “and it’s not purple, it’s plum.”
“Plum on acid, maybe…” Al muttered, biting his lip as I nudged him in the ribs.
“I think it’s spectacular,” stated Orin, before digging back into his mashed potato. Lucy beamed at the compliment.
I had noticed Orin’s heightened interest in my eggplant headed friend these past couple of weeks. Lucy seemed oblivious, and Rose too, but I saw it. In fact, I saw a heightened interest between everyone. There were all of these new appreciative glances, quick touches, flirty smiles, small things that hadn’t been between us before. It seemed to have happened over the holidays, because I clearly recall feeling nothing more than platonic affection towards these three idiots at the end of our fifth year. But now we were in sixth, and Frank Longbottom was checking me out.
“Is there something on my face?” I asked him, catching his glance from across the table. He shook his head, grinning, and went back to his dinner. I went back to mine too, but with the added certitude that there was definitely something wrong with these boys of ours.
“Do you guys think our boys somehow picked up overloads of testosterone over the holidays?”
I asked this question later that night, as the three of us sat in front of the Hufflepuff room fire. I was sitting on the floor between Rose’s legs, who was plaiting my hair, and Lucy was lying on her back in front of the flames. I felt Rose’s fingers halt in their braiding as she thought about my question.
“Our boys?” Lucy asked me, twisting her head to the side, her expression amused. I nodded seriously.
“We own them.” I said, matter-of-fact.
“Yeah,” Rose agreed, chuckling, “they’re totally our bitches.”
“But, bitches with added testosterone. Don’t you think?” I was determined not to let this drop, and to find out if I was the only one making these strange observations or not.
“How do you mean?” Rose asked me, pulling her hands through my hair and undoing all of her work, only to start again.
“They just seem more… sexual, somehow.” I bit my lip. It sounded stupid now that I was voicing it out loud.
“Orin has always been sexual, love,” Lucy informed me, folding her hands over her stomach, “and I guess Frankie has too, in his own, awkward way. And I’m not even sure Al owns testosterone. They’re blokes, Iv. Isn’t that how blokes are?”
“Yeah, but not our blokes,” I retorted, sighing. Rose chuckled.
“Our bitches,” she murmured, “I love it. I’m going to make them T-shirts.”
“Maybe you’re just noticing them more,” Lucy suggested, shrugging, “Personally, my opinion of Orin and Frankie changed the first time I saw them shirtless on the Quidditch Pitch in fourth year,” she turned her head to the side, so she was looking at me. “Maybe you’re getting the same thing, just later. How about you, Rose? Do you think the boys have gotten more sexual?”
“Our boys, Luc,” Rose corrected, “And no. Moronic turnips, remember? They’re all the same to me. Although, Orin is fit. Ivs, don’t worry about. Maybe they’re the ones noticing you more, but even so, it’s nothing serious.” She patted me on the head, “embrace it, my love. Go snog one.”
“Yes, because it went so well last time,” I retorted, rolling my eyes. Last time had been at the end of year party before the holidays, with a Slytherin sixth year. I had bit the fellow on the nose. And then had my elbow felt up. It made me disgruntled just to think about it.
“At least your date wasn’t covered in pumpkin soup by Scorpius Malfoy,” Rosie answered, sighing. Luc and I laughed, recalling the catastrophe that had been Rose’s first date with Oliver Grant.
“That was in fourth year,” Luc reminded Rose, who scoffed.
“It was still traumatizing. Why does Malfoy exist? Why?”
“Oliver’s a git, anyway,” I stated firmly, “I say good riddance!”
“Hear, hear,” Lucy raised a slender hand in agreement to my words. Rose tugged gently on my hair.
“You guys are right though,” she sighed, shaking her head. “Did you know that he tried to feel me up under the counter and then left without paying?”
“Moronic turnips, the lot of them!”
When I walked into the Great Hall early the next morning, I found it almost deserted. A couple of early morning stragglers sat sipping bowls of morning cocoa in silence, while others picked sleepily at their scrambled eggs. I loved early mornings – no matter what kind of day it was going to be, they always felt like the beginning of something exciting. I caught sight of Al sitting alone at one table, and walked over to him.
“Greetings!” I said cheerfully, taking a seat beside him and reaching for the pot of green tea, “Did you sleep well?”
“Like a baby,” he answered, applying an alarmingly thick layer of butter on his toast. “You look cute today, Ivs.” He motioned towards my hair, which I had put up into two buns on the top of my head. I inclined my head to the side in sign of thanks, and added a spoonful of sugar to my tea, frowning.
This was some sexual stuff right here, I’m telling you. Next thing I knew Orin was going to be kissing me on the mouth while Frankie offered me roses. I decided to have some bacon. I didn’t usually eat bacon, but when I did, I sorted through my troubles like wildfire. Bacon made me a great genius, I swear.
“What are your plans for the holidays?” my freckled friend asked me.
The Halloween break was coming up, and I was counting on going home and being unsocial with my mother. I told Al this, and he grinned.
“Maybe I’ll come visit you,” he said, nudging me with his elbow, “I’ll rock up one morning when you least expect it, catch you wandering about in tracksuits and a scrunchie.”
“I don’t own a scrunchie.”
“You can borrow Lucy’s.”
Al was right, Lucy did own a scrunchie. Actually, name any piece of strange, uncommon clothing and Lucy probably owned it. I knew for a fact that she was in possession of a fluoro orange scarf with sleeves. Just that. A scarf, with sleeves hanging off the sides.
It was when Al began to squeeze a slice of lemon over his heavily buttered toast that I decided to worry.
“Al, darling,” I said gently, reaching over to place a hand on his forearm, “What the fuck are you doing?”
“Lemoning my toast?” He answered, shooting me a bewildered look from behind his glasses.
“And do you… do that often?”
Al really didn’t seem to understand my point, so I decided to elaborate.
“It’s just that… well, putting lemon juice on your bread - on anything other than fish or salad, really -is a little odd. Does it taste good?”
“It tastes like heaven,” he answered indignantly, placing his squeezed lemon on his plate and taking a big bite of his citrusy toast. I winced when he swallowed. “Want some?” he extended the bread towards me, his smiled inviting.
“No thanks,” I answered kindly, “not ever.”
“You’ll like it!”
“People seem to be saying that a lot lately, and I don’t find it reassuring.”
“Come on, Ivs,” he waved the toast tentatively underneath my nose, and I grinned at his enthusiastic expression.
“It’s not going to happen, Albus,” I said, shaking my head, but Al didn’t back down. He slung a casual arm around my shoulder and pressed his face up next to mine.
“Just look at it, Ivy,” he sighed, holding the toast out in front of us. All I saw was a piece of brown bread covered in butter and dripping lemon juice onto the tabletop, but he seemed to think it was beautiful. “Don’t you want to try it, even a little bit?”
“Not even slightly, Potter.”
“I’ll convince you in the end, you know,” he told me, rather smugly. I was sure he was wrong, so I told him this. I told him, I said “Albus, there is no way on this earth or on all parallel versions (I watch a lot of Doctor Who. With my mother. I prefer to think of it as a quirky habit rather than a sad one though) that I am going to let that lemoned toast enter my mouth. Now let it go”. And I planned on sticking to that conviction.
So I tried it. It tasted like raw dough dipped in lemons and then dropped day old butter. It was horrific. It’s what I imagined the food served in Hell would taste like to Lucy once she ended up there. I would never trust Al with anything, ever again.
“This is dreadful! Iv, don’t you think it’s dreadful?”
We were in potions class, the last class of the day, and I wanted it to be over. I gave Penelope a flat look.
“They’re already dead, and they’ve been crushed into powder. There isn’t even anything vaguely animal about it, Pen,” I sighed, staring at the jar of ground Stag Beetles sitting on the desk in front of us. I was sharing a table with Al and Penelope, and the latter was refusing to pour the beetle dust into our simmering potion. She thought it was inhuman and disrespectful to the lives lost. I thought I’d like to rip the colourful ribbons out of her curly hair and chuck them on the fire.
“Ladies, let me deal with this,” Al intervened, reaching for the jar. He held it poised above our potion, and looked steadily into Penelope’s worried face.
“Pen, I’m going to have to pour this into the cauldron,” he told her gently, “but you can say a few words first, if you’d like. In fact, we can all say a few words.”
His gaze flicked over to mine then, green eyes shimmering with amusement. “Penny, you go first.”
“Beetles,” she murmured, “I’m sorry that you were killed, cut up, and ground. I’m sorry that we’re about to boil you up in a Merriment Draught. My condolences.”
“Rest in peace, Stag Ones,” Al said solemnly, the jar titling a little further so that the glittering dust slid down to the end, “I hope your short lives were good lives.”
“Oh Beetles of the Shimmering Green Coat,” I intoned, trying not to meet Al or Penelope’s gaze. I think even my curly haired friend was finding it vaguely amusing by this stage, “we will pour your crushed remains into a cauldron of bubbling potion. But you will hopefully give us an O in the process. And for that, we are grateful.”
Al tipped the jar upside down after this, letting the pretty dust that was once live beetle tumble into the dark red substance in our cauldron. Tentatively, we all peered over the edge, to see the beetles off, and were met with a cloud of egg-smelling smoke.
“What is this?” Al coughed, as we all pulled our heads quickly away. I waved the yellow smoke away from the open page of our potions book.
“Ah,” I said, my heart sinking. “I see our problem.”
Two pairs of wide greens eyes peered waterily at me through the smoke.
“It says here to ‘measure out two brass spoons of Beetle Dust, and add slowly to potion’. Now, I think there was a little more than two brass spoons in that jar.”
“Damn,” Al swore, waving the last dregs of foul smoke away from our cauldron. We had attracted a few amused glances from our classmates by now, and I could see Professor Fenton, our teacher, making a beeline for us.
“What do we say?” I whispered, staring from Fenton to the empty jar.
“We say I slipped,” Al stated firmly. “I got steam on my glasses or something, and the jar fell out of my hand and into the pot.”
“What, and it just magically reappeared clean and untouched?” I shot back, rolling my eyes.
“I think it’s a little late to throw it in now, Ivs!” He riposted.
“Students?” Fenton had reached us by now, and was staring down at us past his long, abnormally thin nose. We all slowly turned around to face him, our expressions apologetic. “What is happening here?”
“We’re sorry, Professor,” Penelope murmured, flicking her gaze towards our ruined Draught, “but we got a little carried away with the funeral.”
“I’m so sorry guys, I had no idea he’d give us detention for it!” It was after class, and Penelope was apologizing.
“Well, he did,” I answered sadly, shoving my potion books into my bag, “and luckily for you, you only have to polish trophies. Al and I are de-weeding the bloody herb garden.”
“I’d much rather do that, Ivy,” Penelope answered, slinging her bag over her shoulder, “and to be fair, I doubt he would have been so cross if he hadn’t overheard your and Al’s plan to throw the empty jar into the cauldron.”
“And I’m to be stuck with this genius for three hours tomorrow afternoon,” I joked, poking Al in the ribs.
He grinned, slinging an arm around my shoulder, “Bonding time, Ivs!” he said cheerfully, steering me out of the classroom, “aren’t you excited?”
Hey, hope you liked it. The rest of the story is really just like any other story now. No more flashbacks or flashforwards, just their sixth year at Howgwarts. And... I would love some reviews, they always make me ridiculously happy (: