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You could hide beside me maybe for a while
and I won't tell no one your...

Chapter One: Know That Life Is


I smiled as the voice pounded through my ears. I soared over the Quidditch field, the small golden ball was beating its little wings against my fingers. I felt a burst of happiness as the students below me cheered, waving their scarlet and gold banners and flags.

I touched back down, my boots hitting the soft grass heavily. I held up the Snitch to the screaming crowd and dropped my broom, I couldn’t seem to wipe the big grin off my face. The rest of the team was running towards me, waving their hands in the air wildly.

I lived for this feeling. There is nothing I love more than flying, feeling the wind rush through my hair…and most of all, the cool metal touch of the golden Snitch captured tightly in my hand.

“Charlie! Charlie!”

I bit my lip and turned around. There they were again, that group of Ravenclaw girls in my year. They didn’t even look disappointed their own team lost.

“Oh, Charlie, what a spectacular catch! You never cease to amaze me!” Alexa twittered, grasping onto my arm. She clung tightly; I quickly changed my wince to a smile.

“Er—thanks,” I replied. She beamed as her friends broke out in whispers, no doubt talking about how I fancied Alexa or something like that.

Just what I needed. Giggly Ravenclaw girls spreading rumors.

“Charlie,” Madison began. “Alexa was wondering if—”

“Maddy, shut up!” Alexa exclaimed, slapping her hand over her best friend’s mouth.

I shifted uncomfortably, just realizing the Snitch was still in my hand. The stands were beginning to empty as the students filed down the stairs and made their way back to the castle.

“Hey Charlie! Party in the common room!” Matt called, walking over to me.

I waved my arm, or at least the one that wasn’t held tightly by Alexa. “Hey, can you take this to Madam Hooch?” I asked him, handing him the Snitch.

“Yeah, sure,” he said, winking before turning towards the locker room.

I turned back to the group of girls. Then I saw her.

She was standing behind her friends, though she wasn’t facing us. All I could see was her blond hair that fell below her shoulders. I knew she had beautiful green eyes that were now staring off to the lake. She did that a lot.

Just like always, she was waiting for them to hurry up so she could go to the library. I found that she was constantly in the library, but I’m not a stalker or anything like that. Every time I see her, I don’t know, I guess I sort of—freeze.

‘There she is Charlie, old boy. That girl you’re crazy about, but know nothing of her! Do something, there she goes! Go talk to her, you dolt!’

Something about her, she was different. She didn’t dig her nails into my arm like Alexa did, or threaten to let loose some dumb secret like Madison. But there was definitely more to it. There was more than just her actions, I could tell. She must’ve thought differently from the friends she hung around. She had to; she wasn’t trying to get me to notice her, that’s for sure.

But I had. I wanted to know more about her, because as thick as it sounds, I didn’t even know her name. How can you not know a person’s name like that? Her friends were always around me and I didn’t even know the girl’s name.

Sometimes I think I’m hopeless.

“Charlie? Earth to Charlie!” Alexa giggled, waving her hand in front of my face. I blinked. “You like the lake too, huh?”

“The lake? Oh! Yeah, the lake. It’s nice,” I said quickly, covering up my mistake.

“Well, we’ll let you go,” Madison sighed, pulling Alexa off my arm. “We know you want to get to that party.” She winked.

“See you later, Charlie!” Alexa waved as Madison and the rest of the girls pulled her away.

“See you,” I said half-heartedly, staring after the girl-who’s-name-I-stupidly-don’t-know. She followed after the rest of them and began to talk to Madison. I felt a jolt as she smiled; she looked beautiful.

“Charlie Weasley, you’re going mental,” I muttered to myself as I turned around and headed to the locker rooms at the other side of the pitch. The grass rustled under my feet as I walked, the golden hoops were creating light spots along the blades of green.

“Absolutely mental.”

~ : ~ : ~ : ~

“Aw, come on, Charlie! Don’t be a killjoy!” Matt said, thumping my shoulder with a fist. He jumped over the sofa and landed at my side with a heavy flop. The rest of the common room was noisy with chatter, everyone was pleased with our victory.

I grinned. “I’m not trying to be a killjoy, honestly.” I grabbed for a Cauldron Cake and took a bite of it.

“Going to see your girl, again? Going to stalk her like usual, eh?”

I coughed on his words, causing him to crack up with laughter. I cleared my throat, once regaining my composure, and rolled my eyes. “I don’t stalk her, mate.”

“Charlie—you’re my best friend. And I’m going to tell this to you straight.” I snorted. “Ahem. You’re in love with this girl.”

“In love? I don’t think so,” I replied. “I just fancy her a bit.”

“A bit?” He held out his hand as he began to hit each finger with his every sentence. “You’re always looking at her. You leave great parties like this to go watch her. You crave to know more about her. You’ve tried to talk to her a billion times only to get nothing but cold feet. Heck, if you knew her name you’d probably doodle it all over your Transfiguration homework!”

I gaped at him. “I wouldn’t do that. Girls do that.” He raised an eyebrow. “Shut up.”

“I’m telling you…” he said, taking the Cauldron Cake out of my hand.

I stared at the table in front of me. Piles of sweets were stacked on it, along with empty wrappers. “I don’t know, Matt. There’s just something about her…I can’t explain it. Why is there so much I need to know about her?”

“You know, when you first took a liking to this girl, I kind of thought she was just a quiet person. Like she kept more to herself than anything else. But you’re right. What’s with all the secrets?”

“Do you think she has something to hide?” I asked, looking up at him. He was frowning, like he was thinking hard.

“You mean more than just her name?”

“Y—yeah. More than that,” I replied uncertainly. “Do you think so?”

“Honestly, Charlie, I don’t know. She is different. And it’s more than latching herself to your arm wishing for a shag.”

I nodded. That was true, but I already knew she was different. I already knew she wasn’t like other girls, but how? All I had was habits that she had developed. Going to the library, staring at nature, keeping to herself even though she had a group of friends.

But I couldn’t pull anything from that. Those were just things she did, right?

“Well, what are you waiting for?” Matt asked, snapping me out of my thoughts.

“What?” I asked, blinking stupidly.

“What—are—you—waiting—for?” he repeated slowly.

I grinned, pushing myself off the couch. I jumped over the table and ran towards the portrait hole.

“Go get her, mate!” Matt yelled after me. I shook my head and snickered, climbing through the small hole in the wall.

“Congratulations, young man. I heard you won the—” the Fat Lady began, but I cut her off.

“Thanks! See you later!” I called over my shoulder as I ran down the corridor. It was empty, the rest of the students were probably enjoying the warmth of their common rooms after being out in the cold all day for the match.

I raced down the hallways, ignoring the cranky portraits yelling for me to slow down. I couldn’t seem to stop running, though. I guess I was a bit excited and Matt wasn’t helping by keeping my hopes up. The truth was…I didn’t want to freeze like always. I wanted to talk to her. I wanted to know her name.

I finally skidded to a stop in front of the library door. I knew she was in there, I didn’t even have to check. Er—don’t ask.

I wiped the sweat that was forming from my brow and sighed deeply.

“Charlie Weasley is not going to make a fool of himself,” I muttered. “Charlie Weasley will go in there and do what he does best. Charlie Weasley is calm and collected. Charlie Weasley is not going to make a fool of himself.”

“Charlie Weasley better stop talking to himself because it’s making this girl think he’s mad.”

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