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(a/n: Sorry for the late update.  I lost all my chapters that I had written in advance because my computer crashed...WAAH!  Plus, I was inundated with school work for the past week, but I have come out of it with only a few scratches and I am ready to start back on my story! Enjoy!)


The month of March rolled lazily around and Micaela found herself slowly dreading the end of the year.  Holidays were looming ever closer and the thought of having to leave her only home haunted her like the plague.  Her parents would never take her back after she had run away.  She wished she could remain at Hogwarts forever.


‘You can come stay with us,’ offered Tucker when she told him of her fear one night at dinner.  Bianca snorted into her soup and tried to cover up her amusement with some choking noises.  'What's so funny Bee?'

'Young love,' Bianca sighed, looking off into the distance.  Tucker's face went bright red and he looked like he was ready to murder her.  

'Do you want me to hex you?'

‘I’d love to stay with you, Tucker,’ Micaela interrupted.  ‘But I don’t even know if I’ll be coming back here.  If you haven’t noticed, I’m not very well liked.’


‘Oh shut it,’ Bianca snapped. ‘You don’t realise how many people around here do like you.  You don’t realise how many people stand up for you when you’re not around.’


Micaela blushed and looked away.  ‘It still doesn’t make up for the fact that certain, powerful figures have it out for me.’


Bianca, Tucker and Carina followed her gaze up to the Head’s table where Salazar was whispering to Hufflepuff.


‘Doesn’t matter though, right?’ Carina offered.  ‘I mean, you have Gryffindor on your side.’


‘I don’t know if that’s enough,’ Micaela said honestly.


‘So, what do you want to do for your birthday tomorrow?’ asked Tucker eagerly.


Micaela groaned and buried her head in her arms on the table.


‘Oh, be fun for once!’ Bianca laughed, kicking her under the table.  ‘Did you think we’d forgotten?’


‘I don’t want to bring any more attention to myself than is necessary,’ Micaela mumbled into her jumper. 


‘I know what you mean,’ Carina said darkly.


On the day of her eleventh birthday, Micaela was woken up by two screaming bodies practically jumping on her abdomen.  She grunted in pain and kicked out furiously.


‘What are you doing?’ she practically yelled over their clamour.


‘Happy Birthday!’  Bianca and Carina sang out.  The other girls in the dormitory glared at their antics in sleepy anger.  One annoyed girl threw the curtains around her bed so hard they all came falling down in one, big heap.


‘Shhh!’ Micaela hushed, jumping out of bed and furiously pushing them out of the dormitory.  She gave the remaining girls an apologetic look, before she dragged Carina and Bianca down the stairs.  ‘Are you trying to wake everybody?’


‘Open my present first!’ exclaimed Carina, pushing a small parcel at her.  Micaela ignored her request until they arrived in the Common Room.  It was nearly empty at such an early hour in the morning.  Only a few, mad students were awake and most had dark bags under their eyes from their lack of sleep.


Tucker smiled up at her from where he was reading a book near the fire.  He looked perfectly revived, as though he had slept for hours.  ‘Happy Birthday!’


‘Thanks,’ Micaela said forcing a smile. 


‘I’ll run down and get some food from the Great Hall!’ exclaimed Bianca, racing for the door.  ‘We’ll have a party!’


Micaela groaned and threw herself into an armchair.  She blinked her eyes rapidly and rubbed them to clear them of sleep.


‘Open my present!’ Carina exclaimed again.  She was thoroughly impatient. 


Tucker gave Micaela an amused look as she rolled her eyes.  ‘Give me a second, I need to wake up.’


Suddenly, Bianca was back in the room and not looking quite as cheery as usual.  ‘Zachary is outside.’


‘What?’ Micaela asked astonished.


‘He says he wants to see you,’ she shrugged.  A Slytherin at the door to the Gryffindor Common Room had clearly squashed her happiness.  Tucker wouldn’t meet her eye.  Micaela frowned and got out of her seat. 


Zach was waiting for her outside the Common Room just as Bianca told her he would be.


‘Happy Birthday,’ he offered weakly.  Micaela smiled, uncertainly, as she watched him practically pace in front of her.  He kept running his fingers through his blond hair, uncomfortably.


‘Thanks,’ she said slowly.  Why was he acting like this?


‘Here,’ he practically thrust a small, brown package into her arms.  ‘It wasn’t even my idea, my mother just had it lying around, and when I told her about you in the Christmas holidays, well, she told me to just take it, and it’s really no big deal, I just thought since you’re a girl you’d like this sort of thing.’


Micaela, amused at his nervousness, raised her eyebrows and took the package.  She folded back the paper to find a small box.  Inside was a small, plain silver ring.  Her eyes widened and she looked up at Zach in astonishment.  She took it out and examined it between her fingers.  Inside the curve, was written the words:


Amori Crede


‘It means, trust in love.  It’s a family heirloom,’ explained Zach.  He searched her face, nervously.  ‘Do you like it?  It’s o.k. if you don’t…I just…’


‘I love it!  I’m never taking it off!’ exclaimed Micaela.  She threw her arms around Zach and hugged him tightly.  She couldn’t describe how much this meant to her.  Surprised by her reaction, Zach stood motionless for a second; however, he soon wrapped his arms around her and hugged her back.


‘I’m glad you like it,’ he said the minute she released him, only to look back at the ring again.  He ran his fingers through his hair again.


Micaela beamed at him. ‘Thank you.’

The Dail Prophet

Top Story:  Hogwarts to be shut down?

Rumours of arguments from behind Hogwarts walls have been circulating ever since the arrival of the Muggleborn.  Numerous accounts of disagreements between the Founders of Hogwarts have been recounted and retold, and now it looks as though the rumours might be fearfully true.


‘The Muggleborn has been disrupting the peace of Hogwarts,’ a Hufflepuff first year explains.  ‘Most of the fights that have been breaking out are because of her.’  Many other students feel the same way and many claim she is creating divisions between the houses.  ‘She’s made all the Gryffindors hate the Slytherins,’ a young Slytherin girl sobs.


Gryffindor is said to be fighting for the Muggleborn remaining at Hogwarts, however, Slytherin is said to disagree upon the matter.  ‘Slytherin told me not to worry, that my daughter wouldn’t have to learn in the same tainted classrooms as that [Muggleborn] for much longer.’


An unnamed source tells us that if the problem isn’t resolved, and soon, Slytherin might desert the school, forever.


Micaela glared at the pages of the Daily Prophet.  The injustice of the article filled her blood with boiling hatred and her stomach clenched uncomfortably.  Tucker and Carina had tried to keep the article from her, but she had managed to finally get her hands upon it.  She looked out of the library window at the thunderstorm and sighed.  She could never seem to catch a break, could she?


She crumpled up the newspaper, threw it into her bag and slung that over her shoulder.  She returned the librarian’s cranky glare as she slipped out of the library.  The corridors were packed because of the horrid weather and students could be seen in all directions appearing just as despondent as Micaela was feeling.


‘Sorry,’ she mumbled as she pushed through the crowds blanketing the staircases.  She felt a few unnecessary jabs from some elbows as she pressed through the pack of Slytherins loitering, irritably in front of the Great Hall, but she ignored them magnanimously and continued down into the dungeons.


Her footsteps echoed around the tunnel and Micaela shivered and hugged her robes tighter to herself.  She hated being down here, the emptiness scared her more than anything.  She was in enemy territory.


She was almost at the corner that led to the Slytherin Common Room, when suddenly she heard a crash echo around the chamber, a grunt of pain and then some shouting.  She stopped in her tracks and edged slowly to the corner, dropping her bag to the ground as she did so.


‘Starting to reconsider your time spent with that Mudblood, yet?’  Micaela’s heart dropped and she flung her back to the wall.  She should just slowly, slink away and get back to her Common Room as quickly as possible.  After all, she could talk to Zach about the article later.  She knew she should flee, but something kept her there.


She heard a small whimper and then another crash of metal.  She couldn’t contain her curiosity, and she inched toward the edge of the wall.  She tucked her hair behind her ears and peered around the corner.  A tall, muscular seventh year, bedecked in Slytherin robes stood not three metres from her.  Micaela’s heart froze at his close proximity and she drew back at once. 


‘Get up you coward,’ sneered the boy to his unseen victim.  She heard more crashing metal and another grunt of pain.  ‘Do you realise you’re disgracing your Uncle’s name, this House’s name with your….frivolities?’


Realisation hit Micaela like a ton of bricks, and she peered round the corner again.  She gazed past the offender and saw Zach crumpled against a fallen suit of armour, blood streaming from his nose.  Anger boiled under her skin as she stared aghast at the situation. 

‘Not talking?  Fine, I’m sure your Uncle will have much to say to you,’ he sauntered up to Zach’s crushed frame and kicked him in the ribs.  Zach clutched his side in pain and curled himself into a ball. 


Micaela couldn’t take it any longer, before she had time to think of the consequences, her body acted of its own accord.  She threw herself around the corner, drew her wand and shouted, ‘Expelliarmus!’


The Slytherin boy’s wand flew from his hand and clattered to the ground, a couple inches from Micaela’s black shoes.  He spun around in bewilderment, but upon seeing Micaela, smiled grotesquely.  Micaela groaned in frustration; it was the Head Boy. 


‘Give me your wand and kindly hand mine back,’ he simpered as sweetly as he could. 


‘No,’ Micaela’s voice trembled with rage and her hand shook with fear as she pointed her wand straight at her offender, but her fearful eyes gave her weakness away.


Before she knew it, he had her thrown against the wall, and his hands clutched her throat in an iron grip.  Micaela choked and gazed up at the Head Boy in complete and utter fear.


‘I could kill you right here for treating me so inappropriately, and I’m willing to bet no one would miss your presence,’ he mocked.  Micaela tried to gulp for air, her head was beginning to spin, but out of the corner of her eye, she saw Zach struggling to his feet, grabbing his wand and…


‘Wingardium Leviosa!’


The dented suit of armour flew into the air at the wand’s command.  The Head Boy spun round upon hearing the incantation and was faced with a face full of metal, before he crumpled to the ground, unconscious.  Micaela fell to the ground also, clutching her throat and gasping for air.  Zach and she stayed that way for a while, both of them catching their breath.


‘Are you hurt?’ she asked finally.  Zach looked up at her in disbelief.  Blood caked his face, his hands and his uniform, and his eye was beginning to swell and blacken.  Micaela gulped, ‘Stupid question?’


Zach nodded, dabbing his nose with his hand to check and see if the flow had stopped.  Micaela considered him wearily.  Should she bring up what she had just seen?  It had never crossed her mind before that he would suffer for being her friend.  She had been so selfish.


‘Zach, I’m really sorry,’ she offered weakly.  Zach shrugged and stumbled to his feet.  He shuffled over to Micaela and held out his hand.  She grabbed it thankfully and he hoisted her to her feet.


They gazed down at the body of the Head Boy in silence.  Zach nudged him with his foot, ‘I hit him good.’


Micaela bit her lip, unsure of what to say.  ‘What do we do now?’


Zach shrugged again.

A timid knock sounded at the door leading to the Headmaster’s office. Salazar glanced up, his face dark with fury and he waved his hand nonchalantly. The door opened. Zach hesitated at the frame, before he stepped in. 

‘Take a seat,’ Salazar said brashly. He observed the boy as he shuffled forwards and took a seat opposite his Uncle. Silence ensued.

‘Is mother alright?’ Zach finally dared ask.

‘Oh, don’t give me that naïve crap. We both know why you’re here and it has nothing to do with your dumb mother!’ Salazar snapped, leaping to his feet. He glared down at the boy in resentment.

Zach glared up at his Uncle in hatred and he clenched his fists as he said, ‘My mother is not dumb!’

‘You dare talk back to me? After all you have done?’ Salazar spat at the boy as he leaned over him, furiously. ‘You are not to speak to her. You are not to touch her. You are not to even have the presumptuousness to look at her. I forbid you. And need I remind you, I am the one that you and your mother so readily depend upon. You wouldn’t dare have the audacity to resist me when I am in control of your future and your mother’s health, would you?’

Zach stared up at his Uncle desperately. His mother’s health? He forced the tears, which he so desperately wanted to release, back and nodded consentingly.

‘Good, now get out of here,’ he snapped, waving his hand at the door. Zach gave him one last, scorching look before he took his leave. 

A/n:  Is it going well so far?  Please give me some advice?  I did a bit of editing on this chapter.  I think it's better now.  What do you think?

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