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Disclaimer: I do not own Harry Potter.  All hail J.K. Rowling for creating HP so that we can all play in her world with her characters.  The only things I own are the plot and any original characters that you do not recoginize.






Chapter 7
A Leap of Faith






Molly awoke on Monday morning feeling quite refreshed.  A part of her felt like something had shifted between her and Harper the previous night, however slight.  She still disliked him, but no longer felt the hatred that burned inside of her any chance she thought about him.  Though, there was no way of knowing if things were truly different between the pair of them, especially considering the fact Harper enjoyed playing his little games with her.  Whether he was being nice to her when it was just the two of them or making fun of her when around his friends, it drove Molly crazy.  Why couldn’t he just grow up already?  She thought to herself.  However, there was only one way to know for sure, and that would be if he treated her with or without respect in Defense Against the Dark Arts this morning.

It was annoying to say the very least that Harper was having this kind of effect on her.  What did it really matter if he really was changing the way he treated her?  It’s not like she liked him either way.  Though, she had to admit there was a small part of her that would have liked to become friends with Finn Harper, there was also the uncertainty in her stomach that he would hurt her in some way shape or form.  It was after this thought had processed, she realized how much power Finn seemed to already have over her by controlling her emotions and feelings toward him any given moment of the day.  First she liked him then she didn’t, and now she liked him again.  What’s next?

She supposed she shouldn’t be surprised since Finn already knew exactly which of her buttons to push when it came to messing and joking around with her.  Though it was different somehow, and the difference now was that Harper was toying not only with her anger, but also with her heartstrings.  Yes, Molly Weasley II was starting to fall for Finn Harper, despite her reluctance to admit it.  Now, to say she was falling for Harper was not the same as saying she was falling in love with him, but rather she found herself wanting to become friends with the Slytherin.

The only problem with becoming friends was Harper’s immature Slytherin mates.  It seemed anytime she came near Finn when he was around his rambunctious, rude mates, he would turn back into a hideous toad she did not want anything to do with yet again.  Though, there were times she saw him pause before calling her name or insulting her, she still felt as though things would never truly improve between the two of them.

“Rise and shine,” Erin exclaimed, while stumbling out of her own bed that was across from Molly’s bed and then threw a pillow at her.  “It’s not the weekend anymore.”

Molly grumbled.  “I am awake.”  She may not have been fully alert, but awake nonetheless, she thought this last bit to herself.

“Well, then get your lazy arse out of that four-poster, little lady!”  Erin scolded in more of a comical sense, causing Molly to smile and shake her head.

Molly grumbled one last time for extra measure before rolling out of bed to head to the bathroom to clean up and change into her school robes.  It was going to be an exceedingly long day, for she could already foresee it trudging along at a snail’s pace.  When Molly had finally finished getting ready after packing up her school bag, she walked downstairs through the common room and out the door with Erin, only to be joined by Mathis halfway toward the Great Hall for breakfast.  Like a dork, Mathis had called out to them to wait up as he sprinted in their direction.  Both of the girls burst into a fit of giggles when he had caught up with them, gasping for breath, before continuing on their way.

“Oversleep, much?” Erin asked, with a slight quirk of her eye brow raised.  She never missed an opportunity to poke fun at Mathis; the pair were perfect for each other, but Molly was not about to inform them of this again since she knew it would not go over well with either of her two friends.

“Joke all you want, but I have a good reason for sleeping in.”

“Oh, really,” Erin replied, “and what, dare I ask, is this good reason and how is different from your other harebrained excuses?”

“Hey!  I resent that!” Mathis said defensively.  “I’ll have you know that I was up all night finishing up that essay for DADA that is due this morning in class.”

“Like that’s an excuse,” Erin said, starting to lecture him on the importance of getting assignments done in advance.  “There was no reason you would have had to stay up late if you had finished it over the weekend.”

Molly tuned out their bantering as she fell into her own thoughts again for the remaining walk down to the Great Hall.  Once she had finished eating a bowl of cold cereal and slice of toast with marmalade spread thinly over the top, she headed toward DADA with her fellow Seventh Year Ravenclaws.  Any thoughts of Harper had momentarily left her mind as she discussed the properties of a few magical plants with Christian Davies, who shared her enthusiasm in the subject of Herbology.

By the time they reached the classroom, Molly barely had time to register that the Slytherins, let alone Finn Harper, had already arrived and were standing outside the closed door in the hallway.  They had been leaning up against the wall, but pushed forward off of it when they saw Molly approach with her friends.

“Oi, oddball!” Nott exclaimed.  “And her little gang of loser friends.”  He nudged Harper in the side, who was the only Slytherin that had remained leaning against the wall.

Molly scowled at Nott as Harper slowly looked up toward where she stood.  She found herself holding her breath, waiting for what was sure to be an outburst of insults aimed at her.  Though, what she got instead was a small smile.  That’s it, nothing else.  For once Finn Harper wasn’t going to make fun of her by calling her ‘Oddball Molly’ or whatever line he found clever and amusing.  Instead, for once, he had chosen to turn over a new leaf by showing her respect, and the best part was that they weren’t alone.  Maybe Finn was maturing after all.  Slowly she released the gulp of air she had been holding, about to say something in greeting, but at that moment the door opened wide to allow the students to enter the classroom.

All throughout the class, Molly could feel eyes on the back of her head though anytime she turned around to catch whoever was staring at her she would find no eyes on her.  Instead, she noticed how Finn would look anywhere but at her, his foot anxiously tapping lightly on the stone, tile floor.  She blushed before turning back around.  By the end of the lesson when Molly looked down at her notes it was to a blank parchment with ink at the tip of her quill dried up to the point of peeling.  She shook her head subconscienously before she stood and followed her friends from the room and out into the hall to head toward the next class.

*

Molly continued to puzzle over Harper for the rest of the day, all the way leading up to the following morning through breakfast and on the way to Potions.  She pointedly glanced in Harper’s direction as they waited out in the hall before class, but it seemed he was determined not to pay any mind to her in front of anyone else.  Nevertheless, she still kept watching him from the corner of her eye.  One thing she noticed was how much quieter he seemed lately, almost mature.  There was still that air of immaturity around him, but it was dimmer than before.  It was almost as though he was finished joking around with his friends, but at the same time she knew he would still be able to laugh and joke around as much now than he used to.

When Professor Holt finally opened the door to allow all of the students to enter, Molly walked inside the classroom and over to the table that Harper was sitting down at; they were still partners after all.  The only acknowledgement he gave her was a simple nod of the head before turning to face where the Professor was standing at the front, trying to get all of their attention.  While Professor Holt explained what potion they would be brewing during that lesson, Molly found herself wishing Finn had said something to her, anything.  She would have even settled for a simple ‘hey oddball’ instead of what she had gotten.  A stupid head nod.  The last time he had said anything to her was a couple nights ago down by the lake.  It seemed like an eternity ago.

She barely paid attention to the instructions being given, though when she opened her textbook up to look at the ingredients and steps it took to brew the potion she understood it well enough to earn an Outstanding.  However, if Harper decided to mess up this potion, too, then she would be extremely upset.  Which was why she thought it odd as the pair of them worked in a terse silence; the tension between the two was so heavy it felt like one of those wool army blankets had been draped over them.  The awkwardness stretched on until Molly could bare it no more.

“Why won’t you talk to me?” she inquired, causing Harper’s attention to snap up from the potion at her.  When his eyes found hers, she felt her face flush before tilting her head down so that her dark hair slid forward to cover her face.  Despite not being able to see the expression on his face, Molly could feel his gaze stay on her as he finally said something to her.

“It’s not that I don’t want to talk to you,” Finn said.  “I just don’t want to make you angry, and since it seems like you always get upset when I talk to you then I decided I’d give you your space.  Unless you want me to talk to you, then I figured I would leave you alone.”

“Oh,” Molly said.  “I thought you were avoiding me for some reason.”

“Avoiding you? Why would I avoid you?”

“I don’t know,” she said.  “You tell me, why would you avoid me?”

Harper paused in thought for a few minutes, stirring the potion counter-clockwise and then throwing in a clockwise stir after every six stirs, before he said anything.  “I don’t have any reason to avoid you, Molly.”

Molly’s brow creased.  “I think that’s the first time you actually called me by my given name instead of some crude nickname.  Okay, what’s up with you, Harper?”

“Nothing’s up with me,” Harper said, starting to get slightly exasperated.  “Maybe I’m just tired of making fun of you.  Perhaps I want to call a truest.  What’d you say; friends?”

“What about your dopey Slytherin mates?” Molly asked.  “Are they going to call a truest to become friends, too?”

“Probably not,” Finn said through a sigh.

“Then how do I know you won’t slip back to making fun of me?”

“I guess you’ll just have to take my word for it,” Finn replied.  “And just to let you know, I always stick by my word when it comes to friends.”

Molly hesitated for a fraction of a minute while she decided whether she could trust Finn’s word.  He looked sincere she had to give him that much credit.  Still not entirely sure, she nodded curtly.  “Fine, but you only get one shot to prove yourself as a friend, so don’t blow it.”  She was quite astonished to notice the way he beamed at her in a good-natured manner before the pair went back to brewing their potion.

By the end of the lesson, the two of them had received full marks on their potion and been able to act civilly toward one another, at times even playful with friendly banter and laughing.  Molly left the class thinking she had been able to get to know a side of Finn Harper she had not seen and couldn’t wait to get to know him more.  Of course, she was still on her guard in case he was tricking her into thinking they were friends.  Why he would do that, she had no idea, but there was just something that made her want to stand on her toes before she trusted him fully.  She was taking a complete leap of faith.



Author's Note:
Thanks for reading! And I'm so sorry for the delay on this chapter; I'm going to be working hard on updating more efficiently from now on, and I'm serious about it this time. I'd love to know what you thought of this chapter in a review! XD

This chapter had been beta'd by californialove (Alice).

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