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Chapter 4 Title: Gossiping Boys and Girls

Disclaimer: I don’t own anything you recognize. The only things I own are my other characters and the plot. Everything else belongs the magnificent, J.K. Rowling.

Yes, so Ronald Weasley was in fact escorting me back to my dormitory. I felt like I was in heaven floating on the clouds with an angel guiding me. Ron was that angel.

“So, Ashlee, how is it possible that we have classes together since first year, and I’ve never met you until today?” He asked me as I led him up a flight of stairs on the way to the Ravenclaw dormitory.

I wanted to tell him it was because he was busy following Hermione Granger around, but I settled for “Well, we don’t exactly have the same friends, so that might have something to do with it.” To be honest, it was kind of difficult to concentrate on words when he was standing so close to me. I could smell his cologne. It had never occurred to me that he might wear cologne… boy he smelt good!

“Well, you’re friends with Terry Boot and Padma Patil, and I know both of them. And Hermione knows who you are. How is it then, that I didn’t know you?”

I couldn’t think of anything to say so I just shrugged. We were walking down the last corridor to my dormitory. At the end of the corridor there was the painting of a queen. In front of the painting was Terry.

“Ashlee! There you are! Padma and I weren’t sure where you went to. Hey, Ron,” he said running towards us. I pulled my hand quickly away from Ron’s out of embarrassment. I don’t think Terry saw.

“Hey Terry,” Ron replied. “Well, I guess I have fulfilled my duty of making sure you didn’t break any of the rules, Ashlee. I guess I’ll see you in classes tomorrow?”

“I suppose so. Thank you Ronald.” I said with a smile. He gave me one of his lopsided smiles that made me weak in the knees then turned and walked away back to his dormitory.

“Password’s ‘wattlebird’” Terry said making the portrait of the queen open. “After you, Miss Winters.” He said gesturing me to go through first.

“Thank you very much, Mr. Boot.”

I walked into the Ravenclaw Common Room and saw that it was pretty much cleared out except for Padma and a few other seventh years. Mandy Brocklehurst, Lisa Turpin, Michael Corner, and Anthony Goldstein were among the other seventh years.

While Michael, Anthony, Mandy, and Lisa sat together talking about the latest gossip on who’s dating who and that sort of thing. Terry and I sat down on the floor in front of the fire with Padma away from the other seventh years. I wanted to tell Padma all about Ron walking me up from the Great Hall and how great progress I was making on winning his attention and affection, but I decided not to say it in front of Terry. I guess I can sort of see what Padma means when she says he likes me. I mean, he was waiting for me outside of the portrait to make sure I was ok. There have been other times too where he was showing how much he liked me, but I guess I never noticed before.

“Ashlee, where did you get to after the feast? You aren’t one to come in late.” Padma asked me once I had sat down next to her.

“I ran into Ron and he and I were talking and then everyone was gone so he walked me back to the common room.” I told her slightly turning my face away from both her and Terry so they wouldn’t see the smile on my face or the blush on my cheeks.

“Well isn’t that something! That was so thoughtful of him.” Padma said. I could tell she was on the verge of laughing at me. I could hear it in her voice. She was mocking me because she knew how much Ron walking me back… or even talking to me meant to me.

I guess Terry was tired of talking about Ron because he turned his attention to Padma and asked, “So who’s going to be your first boy victim of the year?”

It was a joke between Terry and me that Padma’s first boyfriend of the year was her victim. I don’t really know how the joke started, but it’s continued since second year. Padma doesn’t find it funny though.

“I don’t have victims! Stop calling my ex-boyfriends that Terry Boot!” She said bitterly and pushed her long hair behind her shoulder. “And for your information, there is a boy I have in mind, but I don’t think that I’m going to tell you!”

“What do you mean you aren’t going to tell me? Is it one of my closest guy mates? Padma don’t, that would be awkward. And why aren’t you going to tell me?”

“Because it’s a secret, that’s why! Ashlee, I’m going up to the dormitory. I think it’s time for girl talk.”

“Ashlee gets to know, and I don’t?” Terry asked with a mock hurt expression.

“Um, I already know, Terry.” I said laughing.

“Ok, now I’m hurt. So you ladies have decided to keep things between the two of you this year? Is that how it’s going to be?”

“For now,” Padma said pulling me up off the ground.

Terry gave a deep sigh then said, “Thank goodness! I don’t think I’m capable of listening to another year’s worth of you ladies’ girl talks. I’m going up too. Night Ashlee, night Padma,” he said getting up and walking up the stairs to the boys’ dormitories.

Padma and I laughed as we ran up the stairs to our own dormitory and were still laughing when we got into our room. We automatically ran and jumped on our beds like we always do. Mandy and Lisa were our room mates, but they were still down in the Common Room.

“Do you think Terry was being serious when he was thankful that we weren’t telling him about my latest crush?” Padma said turning to face me.

“Honestly, I think we’ve driven him nuts over these past years. But, I think he’ll realize in a bit how much he secretly likes being a part of it. And when you say your ‘latest crush’, you mean your life long crush right?”

“Of course, I’m talking about Terry. I think this year, the way you’re focusing only on Ron, I’m only going to focus on Terry. And truly, I didn’t have any faith in you and your plots of getting Ron Weasley, but it’s only the first night and he walked you to the Common Room? I guess I was wrong. I think you really are going to be able to win Ron and steal him away from Hermione. So tell me what happened with Ron!”

I laughed and began to tell her all about how he took my arm and we talked all the way to the Common Room. I told her how he wanted to know why he and I had never met before.

Mandy and Lisa came in a bit later and the four of us stayed up late talking about silly girly things like hair and makeup. Mandy and Lisa were good friends with Padma and me, but we had never told them about our crushes on Terry and Ron, and we didn’t plan on it either. Mandy and Lisa had really big mouths, probably the biggest mouths of the school. Well, maybe tied with Lavender Brown and Padma’s twin Parvati. Padma and I were always extra careful about what we said to Mandy and Lisa because we knew that if it was something extra juicy, it would be all over the school in a matter of hours. We also knew that we needed to stay on their good side at all times because they were known for ruining people’s reputations.

I tried to listen as Mandy talked on and on about her summer boyfriends, but all I could think about was Ron. Since he had walked so close to me on the way back from the Great Hall, I had a slight scent of his cologne on my robes. Each time I breathed in, I could see him smiling in front of me with his thick red hair. I can not believe that he walked me back! No guy from another house has ever walked me back to my common room. I couldn’t wait until the next day to see Ron and to get one step closer in winning him over.

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