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Beautiful Chapter Image by cérise @ tda. 
Victoire and Dom

“…was utter hell today, I actually got asked by a child if ‘Mr Handsome was my brother’,” Dom was saying rather accusingly that Monday morning. She was sat in the armchair next to mine, hugging a pillow to her chest. She works as a magical social worker. I found it a little hard to believe at first; its equivalent to putting Mr Weasley in to a room full of little Malfoy’s. I just couldn’t see it happening.

She was oblivious to the fact that her sister was paying her not attention, instead tracing her finger along pages of magazines before ripping out pages and setting them on to the arm of the sofa next to her. Victoire was caught up in her wedding. A pile of untouched books and catalogues sat on the coffee table infront of her, next to her untouched mug.

My focus was directed to the large pile of wedding invitations spilling across my lap; they glared at me after days of neglect. I had no excuse to put them off; I promised Vic that I would have them done by the time I go back to school. I wrote the name and address on the envelopes and charmed my wand to write the passage on the actual invite; if I had to do it myself…ergh, hand cramp.

A small cut on my foot was covered with a pink flowery plaster, the only scar from the moon. It was last night. Last night, the sky went dark and the moon rose. I didn’t change. I didn’t loose my mind. I didn’t even flinch.

I had collected another vial of Wolfsbane from Dan before leaving Hogwarts; one for me and one for Teddy. He labelled the bottles and everything, one had ‘Teddy’ scrawled across the front, the other had ‘Charisma’. Dan was a little confused about the 3am wake up call. I had run to the Ravenclaw Tower, answered the question to their Common Room and ran up to the boys’ dorm. I was guided back to McGonagall’s office by a tired looking Daniel with a jumper thrown over his boxers. He thought I had lost it and escorted me around the castle; not letting me out of his sight.

Only yesterday, Teddy and I sat in the woods behind the Potters and after a ‘cheers’ action, downed the vials in one and waited for the howl of the wolf. It didn’t come. Teddy changed, not without a fuss I may add; it’s how I get the cut. He pushed me over and I fell on a tree root. There was no heroic story, but my klutzy-ness. Upon realizing that the only thing that the only difference I could feel, was a little sick, I scratched behind Teddy’s ears and walked down the road to his little house on the corner, drank a cup of tea and fell asleep on the sofa. It was the best night of my life.

Dom leant over the arm of her chair and picked up a blank envelope, she wrinkled her nose and added it to an unkempt pile at her feet. “I agreed to take this job so that I could help children, but I don’t expect any of those trollops to be hitting on my boyfriend!”

Victoire snorted as she looked up from her catalogue, apparently she had been listening. “Dom, darling, I assume that this boy is Lysander,” the glare on her sisters face said it all. “I don’t think he’s going to go for any of those children. Especially consider that the majority are under 10. ”

I laughed. “Yeah, he’s completely hooked on you. Since your sixth year I believe.” Dom looked up to me, her eyes pleading but still angry. She was more Weasley than Delacour in attitude, but she was her mother in looks. A small red star was tattooed on to her wrist, to stand for Gryffindor I believe. “Xander wouldn’t look twice at any girl but you.”

“I’m pretty sure that there’s going to be a second wedding soon.” Victoire said, a little sourly if I heard correctly.

Dom kicked over the pile of envelopes unintentionally with her foot. “Sorry Sis, wouldn’t want to steal your limelight there.” I smiled and looked over the invitations. It was just like the sisters to argue over something so petty. “Besides, I doubt he’s ever going to ask. He was a Ravenclaw after all.”

I smiled warmly and placed another finished envelope by the charmed quill. “Right, so he’ll have the sense to ask before he looses the best thing he’s got.”

She rolled her eyes, lounging back in to the stuffed armchair and stretching out her legs. She leant her head to the side and smiled at me sleepily. “And where would I go?”

A vague memory of many a wizard ogling at her rushed in to my mind. Xander had to go through a lot to win Dom’s heart. She was a woman in demand. “Oh, I don’t know.” I teased. “There are two of them I believe.”

“Hence, Scamander twins.” Victoire heckled, dodging the pillow her sister poorly threw.

She brushed off the comment, focusing once more on the dates her envelopes read. “Bull - to the both of you.” I stared at her unblinkingly. It shocked me that I wasn’t affected by this comment. Two months ago, I would have been, but now, I merely brushed it off without a second thought. “Besides, I couldn’t leave him.” She lovingly looked to the sky. “I may want to bash his effing head in sometimes, but I love him. He’s mine.”

Victoire glance upwards, setting the catalogue down in to her lap, she scrunched up her pretty face. “And I guess I love Teddy.”

“Fuck off!” Dom cussed, aiming her last pillow at her sister. “You would die for that bloody beast!”

I stared at her unblinkingly; she managed a coy smile and threw her envelopes at me before running off to the kitchen. How she could be so blunt and not give it a second thought was beyond me. Vic noticed my shock and placed her hand on to mine. “You get used to it.” I let out a breath I didn’t know I had been holding.

It wasn’t more than two seconds before a smash was heard from the kitchen followed by a mutter of ‘effing …’ I laughed under my breath at the blonde klutz. She didn’t give two tosses about what she broke in that kitchen. “Fancy tea?” Dom shouted. Her voice was at a volume that it echoed through the house.

“Please.” Vic replied. Her voice lowered, “Charisma?”

I glared half-heartedly before my face crumpled. “Make that two!”

Victoire quirked a blonde brow, her gaze alternating between my face and the envelopes in my hand. “You don’t want to be writing my wedding invitations.” It wasn’t a question. “Charisma, I need you to answer me truthfully.” I nodded. “Do you want to talk about what happened at Hogwarts?”

My face crumpled and I dropped my head a little. “No thank you.”

Victoire’s expression was flat and disbelieving. “Charisma, you and Teddy sat at the dining room table the night that you came and discussed what happened. That’s it, you haven’t mentioned it since.”

“He gave me all the advice that I need.”

“Oh, and what would that be?” Victoire challenged.

I sighed. “If someone is giving me jip, I should stand up for myself.” She raised a brow. “If it is a girl, bitch fight and if it is a boy, kick them where it hurt – or if that is impossible, punch them in the face.”

She let out a little whinny that sounded strangely like ‘oh god’. “Are you sure that you don’t want a girl’s opinion?”

I threw her a pointed glance. “And you would know what it feels like how?” I realized I was being rude. But she had no business butting in to mine.

“More than you think.” She said quietly. “Dom won’t talk about it, but our father is part werewolf. Not as much as you, but enough to notice.” I didn’t want to express that I had seen Bill Weasley, a first sighting at age twelve. He wore scars bravely across his face and torso. I only wish I had that much courage to bare mine. “When the kids at Hogwarts found out that I was too, they weren’t too kind.”

Secretly eager to hear more, I placed my quill down on to the table and rubbed my head of the small ache that began to form. “What happened?”

“Its how Dom found Lysander too, you know?” I shook my head in disbelief. “There’s not much too it, me and Ted; Teddy and I were in an argument, things were said that shouldn’t have been. The school already knew of his condition, but they didn’t of mine, and so he told.” A sly smirk pulled at her lips, it contrasted with my look of shock. Teddy did a James? “I forgave him within a matter of hours; I couldn’t be without Teddy after all. But Dom suffered a little worse.”

My nose wrinkled I confusion as I spoke. “I’m gathering that she’s not one to ignore snide comments?”

Her smirk simply deepened at my comment. “Then you’d be correct. She got in to a fight with some children in her year; Lysander was the one that pulled her out of it.” I could imagine Xander as one who would do that. He was the brown haired hero. “He broke up with his girlfriend over Dom. She wouldn’t accept their friendship. He chose Dom over her, and Dom had nothing else, not for another year anyway.”

“A year later?” I chirped. “What happened? Did she do somethi-“

“Met someone.” Vic interjected in a charmingly Slytherin fashion. “We call it the Simon-era.”

“Simon-era?” I echoed, her voice seemed further away in memory as she delved in to them. “Was this boy called Simon perchance?”

She sighed in annoyance as Dom turned the corner with three tea mugs magically floating infront of her. Vic whispered urgently. “The Simon-era is unmentionable.” She said before Dom could notice. “Don’t say anything. If a Delacour found out that I told you, they would have my head.”

“Why the Del-“ Vic sighed in relief as Dom collapsed in the chair as the cups landed on the table, only a little tea sloshing from the top.

“Okay,” Dom muttered to herself as she sat up straight. She bit her lip accusingly. “What were you two lovely ladies chatting about?”

“Boys,” Victoire said, at the same time I said “Wedding.”

“I’ll just leave it at that then,” Dom snapped in a confused manner. “So Charisma.” Dom began slyly. “I want the low down on when you’re getting with James.”

Victoire spat her tea back in to the cup, a little drizzled down her chin; I simply placed my cup ‘calmly’ on to the coaster. Bags still plagued my eyes, along with the nausea in my tummy. “I’m sorry?”

“It’s sixth year.” Dom stated, her eyes were suddenly wider than I remembered.

I nodded uncertainly. “I do realize that, I’m not dysfunctional with dates.”

She raised her hands up in surrender to my outburst. “I’m just saying, it’s your sixth year, and you’re in love with a Potter.”

“Hang on-“

“We all know.” Victoire said. “It’s sort of a family tradition that you end up getting with your best friend.” My eyes flitted down to the rather dramatic sketch that Victoire was drawing on to her catalogue page. It involved a blonde haired squealing girl, which I could only assume was Dominique, and a beaver. “When James brought you home for Christmas, first year, we all had an assumption.”

Exhaling slightly, Dom spoke. “An assumption my arse.” She said with a giggle. “You actually pinned James to the ground in happiness.”

“Let’s face it,” Vic said, her barley-there blonde eyebrows furrowing together as she stuck her hand out in a melodramatic way, “Little Jimmy isn’t a romantic guy, he really didn’t have a hope in hell.”

I jutted out my bottom lip in irritation. “I don’t think that James and I will ever be together.” They turned towards me desperately with a duo of protests. “Just hear me out…please.” I pleaded. Dom muttered under her breath, pretending to write an invite, her quill ripped through the paper and she was now digging into the board she was ‘working’ on. “I can’t trust him. I don’t know how I will ever be able to. I know that sounds dramatic and petty, but it’s the truth. I have seen lots of the bad sides to relationships. I don’t want that to happen to us.”

Victoire sighed yet again, making her brows knit further. “The bad sides? Sweetheart, have you met our family?”

I paused for a moment as she waited for me to continue. “Have you met mine?” She frowned when I didn’t. “Your family has the best track records for relationships, mine on the other hand doesn’t.” I glanced out of the window silently, assessing the chances of jumping through it. The sun absorbed in to the curtains, subtly staining their original white colour to a tasteful brown. “My parents were married for 25 years, and they hated every second of it.”

Neither said a word, the tension was suddenly awkward. Dom frowned at me, rolling her eyes briefly at the stubborn silence. “And?”

“And?” her sister echoed, gently stirring her tea with a spoon. “What do you mean ‘and’?”

“I mean you’re not your parents.” She said; her gaze boring in to mine. I fought the urge to roll my eyes at how beautiful and angelic the pair of them looked with their blue eyes and silvery blonde hair. It was so easy for them to be optimistic about a situation.

“Ok,” I muttered, swinging my gaze back to the sisters. “So what if he does choose me over Little Miss Snooty he has now-“

“-nice, I like it.”

Vic nodded carefully, motioning for me to continue and ignore her sister. “-Why would he do it?” I asked. “I don’t think that I would let him.”

“What are you on about now?” Dom begged, her shoulders slumping slightly.

I blinked wryly, my blue eyes begging for something that I couldn’t understand. “I have baggage.”

“Don’t we all?”

“More than you,” I could see Victoire’s next reply was ‘wanna bet’. “I have a bad case of depression twice a month, twice a month I turn in to a Grumpy Puss. I’m bad enough to take on cousin Lucy!” They both inhaled sharply.

“I don’t think that’s possible.” Dom said, her gaze sardonic.

I shook my head at her skepticism. “This is serious, Dom. We have so many arguments of late it’s hard to keep track whether we’re talking or fighting. Every time I am near him I feel like I want to run away. I don’t want to be around him, never before have I felt that!” Victoire’s eyes grew wide at that comment, her concerned expression disappearing completely. “If he chooses me, he’s also picking a wolf, a rouge animal.”

Victoire shrugged somewhat stiffly. “You’re not an animal Charisma; you have this under control now. And thanks to you, so does Teddy.” I felt my eyes water, surprisingly, hers did too. “He would be choosing you because you’re everything he’s not. You, Charisma Price, are James Potters other half.”

I began to shake my head slowly, gaining more and more power as realization began to set in. “Face it, you said it yourself; James isn’t a romantic, he doesn’t like relationships that take up much emotional effort. Who is he going to choose, Little Miss Peppy-Party-Princess, or a monster?”

Victoire reared back slightly as Dom dropped the pillow from her grip, her nose wrinkling. “I’m not even dignifying that with a response.”

“Charisma,” Vic said. Her tone was barely heard over the clanking Dom was making with her spoon. “Who was it, in third year who rushed him to St Mungos when he fell off a roof?”

I looked to the floor. “You would have done the same.”

“Not…by choice.” Dom intervened, dropping her spoon on to the floor, cussing and leaning down to fetch it.

I followed her actions with my eyes while Victoire tried desperately not to rush over and deal with the tea stain on the carpet of her living room. “Chic, you’re everything James isn’t. You’re his other half.”

Dom looked at the pair of us curiously. “Yeah, and let’s face it. He doesn’t need any more peppy-party-princess in him; he can fill those shoes on his own.” She clutched her spoon like a sword and rushed it through the air. “Especially the Princess section.”

“I bet he has a tiara.”

I didn’t speak for fear of saying something extremely rude, something that I may regret deeply in days to come. I pulled at the waist band of the cotton sweat pants, pulling them up a little. I rubbed my eyes with the back of my hand, sweeping away the tired state of mine.

Professor McGonagall, who had insisted on escorting me to the Hospital Wing, tugged at the bottom of her robes. “Madame B!” She said as she knocked lightly on the heavy oak doors. She sent me a look. It was obvious I wasn’t supposed to speak.

“Minevera?” The nurse asked as she approached the doors. A small clunk of the door knockers and they were pushed open a fraction.

“Brandon, I do believe that you have two sixth year boys in this facility, do you not?” The nurse looked the Professor in the eye and nodded silently. “I request to see them.”

“I’m afraid that’s not possible,” she grumbled. “They’re both asleep. Is there a way you could return in the morning?”

“I’m afraid not,” McGonagall said sternly. “I can assure you that Mr Potter shall want to be woken for this, Mr Sanford can remain asleep.”

“But, Min-“

“No buts,” Professor McGonagall intervened. “Please return to your chambers Madame, thank you for opening the doors.”

Noticing that she had been dismissed, she asked only one final question. “What, may I ask, is going on?” I looked her in the eye, she took my presence negatively. “They assured me that they fell down the stairs in the Common Room.”

“And they did,” The Headmistress assured firmly. “Miss Price here is leaving in a matter of hours on family business. She is here to say a brief goodbye to Mr Potter.”

To say I was confused would be an understatement. Considering that they ‘fell down the stairs’ didn’t account for the fist shaped bruise that lay prominent on Kyle’s face. I could see it in the dark through the miniscule crack in the door. The moon light shined upon his face, making his stern features seem suddenly a lot more ghost like.

Madame Brandon opened the door another few inches before turning around and walking back in to the darkness. It seemed that she and Professor McGonagall weren’t on the best of terms. I blew a stray hair from my eyes and looked up at the Professor in the moonlight.

“Ten minutes, Miss Price.” She said softly, before walking back towards the staircase. “I expect you back in my office with your belongings for the weekend by the end of the hour.” I felt a small pang in my chest as I realized the limited amount of time that left me with James.

I watched her descend the staircase back to the floor below before taking a deep breath and turning towards the Hospital Wing. I folded my arms across my stomach and hugged it tightly, anything to stop the butterflies.

The ‘Wing was dark, only the moonlight shone through the windows. The odd howls of creatures were heard from the Forest, not a mile away. One big growl shuddered through the trees, followed by a flock of birds soaring away and ascending in to the night sky. I could only hope that the two students in the forest would be alright. I walked past the first cot and slowed my pace; Kyle lay lifeless in the one next on my left.

Ellie sat in a chair next to his bed. Her feet were tucked up on the small wooden seat, her head lying sleepily against the wall. She wasn’t touching Kyle, hanging on for the last bit of love that she may ever have. Elle was in Gryffindor for loyalty, I knew that she would stick by me; but I couldn’t assure it, if people asked me to choose between Ellie and James…

The aforementioned bruise blackened his eye; a trail of small cuts patterned the right side of his face. He had his arm in a sling and his leg was tightly fixed in a bandage. I tore my gaze away promptly. Fell down the stairs…yeah right. I had seen this work before. Forth year, a boy had passed a sexual joke about me, when James found out, all hell broke loose. That Ravenclaw was in the Hospital Wing, pretty much like this.

I looked down the rest of the left row, nothing. Not one bed was occupied, nor was one messy. To my right, I was unable to see. The moon shone through the windows on the left and didn’t reach this half of the room, these windows were blackened out; they lead to the Quidditch Pitch. Many years ago, McGonagall realized that while in the Hospital Wing, student wouldn’t concentrate on healing, but on the match. So she blackened the windows, meaning that students couldn’t watch it. Shame really.

I walked forward and leant my hand out on to a cot on the right. My fingers met with a cold bar, the white seemed evident when I touched it. I could feel its colour. I had been in this room enough to know where things were and what they were for. I ran my hand along the cot until I reached the end of the bar, reaching around I felt an empty bed. I turned around and moved on to the next one, empty. So were the next three after that.

Stomping my foot a little I made a small crying sound in the back of my throat. I couldn’t help but feel a little helpless. Professor McGonagall had sent me in to an empty ‘Wing. It was just like James to bolt; the moment he could, he liked to get out of this place. He didn’t like this wing.

It crossed my mind that I could scare Kyle; it was the least I could do. I could act like a ghost and make him feel bad. I was probably pale enough, and it was most likely that he had a concussion. I didn’t walk to the seventh floor for nothing. I didn’t want to scare Elle, so making sure that Kyle would be freaked out without upsetting or waking my friend would be hard.

My wand was still in the Slytherin Common Room, on Scorpius’s bed side table. It sat next to a dim lamp in the shape of a snake. I glanced briefly over the other side of the room; standing in the pitch black gave me the element of surprise. I turned on my feet and crashed in to a hard object, I put my hands out in front of me to steady myself, placing my palms on to the soft material; a chest.

I looked straight infront of me; a tie was loosely hung around a neck and a button undone carelessly. The shirt wasn’t tucked in, only half way and a black cotton sweater vest was pulled on carelessly, covering the bottom of the tie. I took a deep breath, then another and another. Before I could count of three I was hyperventilating. I heard the other swallow before releasing a shuddering breath. My hands clutched their vest in to my fists, pulling them closer.

A pair of strong arms pulled me in. James held me so tightly that my breathing situation didn’t help me any less. I reached up on my tip toes and threw my arms around his neck, my fingers found his shoulders and grasped on. Lovingly, his cheek touched mine before he put his forehead in to the crease of my neck. His breath tickled my skin as I tried to steady my breathing. It was typical him to escape from the Hospital Wing the moment he could. His uniform was only on because he rushed it.

“Charisma,” he breathed. His voice was barley above a whisper.


He pulled back his head and looked me in the eye. His eyes were such a pure emerald that they seemed to shine through the darkness. They were red, without sleep. A cut lined across his cheek from the ‘tumble’ that he took down the stairs. His eyes flickered to my cut, now washed and healed, only a pale line was visible, actually, it was hardly visible. Blaize is a master mind with the healing spells. A looked back to my eyes and swallowed, our foreheads fell together.

“I…I, am so sorry.” He whispered. “I will understand if you never forgive me, if you never want to see me again. I wouldn’t blame you.”

He looked honestly worried and frightened. “Don’t apologize.”

He took his forehead off mine, his expression was still pleading. Mine was blank. “Bu-“

“Don’t apologize,” I said again. “Every time I am with you lately, I seem to get hurt. Whether it’s physically or emotionally. Some how, I always seem to leave you in pain.” I looked down to my heart unintentionally. “Don’t apologize unless you can state what you’re apologizing for.”

“What are you … you are the …. What you mean?” He said, unsure how to phrase all the questions in to one. I ignored his confused expression and reached out, tracing the outlines of he little cuts on his cheek. “I don’t mean to hurt you, you know.”

I closed my eyes and tried to will the pain away. Simply taking to him allowed a shooting ache to echo in my chest, I felt like I was suffocating. Still, he didn’t release his grip on me. He spoke again, “Did I ever hurt you that badly?”

I nodded. “Last night I felt like … I felt like there was nothing left.” We were silent for a while before I opened my eyes. “You’re ok?” He nodded quickly before sniffing. “That’s all I came to see. James I have to go.”

“What?!” He gripped me tighter, disallowing me to move. One of his hands shot from my back to my cheek. “You can’t go, not yet. You’ve been here for thirty seconds, did you come here to tell me just that?” I looked to the floor, anywhere but his face. Still I was tight in his arms. “You can’t go; I won’t let you.”

“It’s not my call.” I said softly. “I’m going to Teddy’s for a while.”

“Why?” James asked. “You can stay here. There is nothing wrong with Hogwarts.”

Silence took over as James continued to stare at me. I was trying to look anywhere else; anything that would make the pain stop. “People are mean.” I said quietly.

“What about the moon?” He asked. “The moon is one Sunda-“

“I’ll be with Teddy.” I answered as he brushed my fringe from my eyes. “Besides, Dan, from Ravenclaw,” I ignored James’s customary eye roll. “He’s fixed it, he gave me Wolfsbane.”

James was speechless; he kept opening and closing his mouth, resembling a fish. “But it takes weeks to make. They could only have found out yesterday.”

“Not if they’re smart,” I said, finally looking back at James. “He’s a Ravenclaw, he knows the signs.”

“So does Harper know too?” My silence was enough of an answer. “Shit.” He cussed, dropping me from his arms and putting his hand to his head. “How could you have let him find out? We should have been more discrete!”

“How could I have let him find out?” I echoed, my lips curling in to a snarl.

“I didn’t mean it lik-“

My expression said more than words, I obviously looked psychotic; James stepped back. “James you betrayed me, you told bloody Radio Lewis what I am.”

“I didn’t mean to!” He countered.

“Oh and that makes it all okay, I forgot.” I finally looked back at James and pushed his arm away as he reached out to comfort me. “You see this scar on my head, James?” he looked away, anywhere but me; to the ceiling. “My best friend did that to me, because he was afraid.” It would have been a good speech, had my voice not wavered. “He was scared, of me! And then you did that to him. I didn’t even know that was humanly possible to do to a person with brute force.”


I pushed him away, knocking him in to a bedside cart, incidentally knocking over bottles. “Don’t touch me!” I snarled. The look on his face made me regret it. He stood up straight, picking up the glass containers on the side that had fallen. I grabbed my hair and turned around, releasing a quiet frustrated scream.

I crouched on to the floor, the t-shirt riding up over my stomach and my feet dirty from walking on the cobbles. I felt a familiar arm surround me, wrap itself around my waist and haul me in to the air; the other one went under the crease behind my legs as he lifted me like a princess. Royalty was the opposite of how I felt.

I pulled my self away from the hard wall of his muscles and attempted to struggle away. I was a little shocked at the fact that Kyle and Ellie had not woken at the noise I was creating. James sat me down on the bed and held me there, wrapping his arms around me and pulling me in to his chest. Touching him was the last thing that I wanted to be doing.

He had turned on Kyle in an instant, betrayed my secret quicker than that; who’s to say that I wont be the next to lie in one of these cots. I had gone years believing that James would never hurt me, but the past few months have proven me wrong. I instinctively flinched away at his voice.

“Charism- Chic, stop struggling.” I stopped pulling away and sat limp on to bed, tugging at his vest with little force. “Charisma.” he whispered. His eyes widened and a crease knitted in his forehead. “Are you scared of me?”

He looked at my face; I had no idea of its expression. I didn’t think that he would hurt me, I wasn’t scared of him. I was just scared of what he can do when he wants to. He has a blatant disregard for the rules. Could he have that type of disregard for me?

“Charisma, you don’t think that I’m going to hurt you? Do you?” all traces of frustration had disappeared from his features. He looked as if he were the one suffering. “I would never hurt you, not intentionally. Please don’t be scared.”

I shook my head and attempted to move my features so I didn’t give the expression that was disturbing him so. My breathing had slowed along with my heart. Now I felt numb, there was nothing.

“Is this about Kyle?” He asked attentively. I looked away; anything but that question. “Please talk to me.”

He caught my gaze with ‘the look’. I wasn’t prepared. His features were different. I had only seen this look once before; five years ago, Christmas, the day my life changed forever. I had prepared myself for the shouting; I had prepared myself for cursing and guilt tripping. I hadn’t readied myself for the look that could break a person’s heart. I took my hands from his vest and gripped on to a nearby pillow instead.

“I don’t like it when you’re mean.”

“I don’t mea-“

“I know.” I said barely louder than a whisper. “I just…It’s not…I…” silence echoed louder than ever before. “You’re nice, James Potter. You don’t hurt people.”

He swallowed what seemed to be a gulp of air and let his arms fall. Before he could look back up and speak, I was gone.

I pulled my collar tighter as I walked quickly down the high street; my school bag was tucked under my arm. It was a cold January morning and snow was treating the north, down south it was cold enough for a coat. I blew my fringe from my eyes and looked at the straps of my bag that hung around my shoulder. Glancing around the bustling crowd, I was glad that I had Teddy. He carried my trunk.

He threw his arm around my shoulder and pulled me in to his chest. We took a left down Diagon Alley and entered a shop with a big green door. Teddy pushed it open and held it for me as I stepped in to the warmth. I brushed my feet on the welcome mat and followed Ted past the counter of the shop; it appeared to sell trinkets.

“There is a post office in the back,” Teddy said, reading my mind. “This is where all formal post headed to Hogwarts stops at before going to McGonagall, this fireplace leads straight to her office.”

I had expected to head back to Hogwarts by floo, just not in this manner. The floo system at the Potters’ was temporarily shut down due to improper use (Dom blames Uncle George for flooing over products for the shop). This was another option, it seemed practical. I had waved to the family, receiving an extra hug from Ginny, an apology from Harry and a lecture from Uncle Percy before heading down to the town with Teddy; he wanted to see me off. Ginny had threatened upon next seeing her son, she was going to wring his neck.

I love Diagon Alley. Excited faces were always on display as children ran down the cobbled street with parents following in a desperate attempt to control their offspring. Magic had that affect on people. However today, we were the only two who didn’t excerpt that fever.

Teddy checked his watch and saw it was ten to seven, outside it was dark, only the odd wizard walked by. Some were young and obviously on dates where as others were simply finishing up their daily shopping. I had been summoned back to school at seven o’clock. I had a few minutes before I had to leave.

“You’re going to be alright?” Teddy asked. I wasn’t sure if he was assuring me or himself. “You’ve got the Wotters with you; there will always be one to make sure you’re alright. It’s what I had.”

I tossed my hair over my shoulder; it seemed odd having it shorter like this. Dom insisted on having it cut before I returned to school. I was expecting a professional, not to have Dom run and fetch the kitchen scissors while I finish writing invites. With one snip my long locks were gone, and the blonde curls fell to my chest. ‘Any more and you would have been sitting on It’, Dom had said, while she stood there with 30cm of my hair in her grip. I was unsure if Victoire still had any abilities yet, the expression on her face read nothing but shock.

“But…but you can’t…do that!” She had stuttered, dropping her magazines and taking the scissors off of her sister.

While Victoire ran around the house, looking for a phone so she could muggle-call Lysander to come and talk some sense in to Dom, I had asked why she had used the scissors and not her wand. ‘Because scissors are more fun’, she had exclaimed. Suddenly, I wasn’t so sure about being in the same house as this particular Weasley.

She had already started, so my view was, ‘Why not let her finish?’ I could only sit and lamely watch pieces of my hair fall to the floor as she snipped away without a care in the world. She re-cut my fringe; it no longer ran across my eyebrows by instead swept to the side. My eyebrows themselves were now fit for Hollywood.

But my dresses were gone.

The end; they’re gone, chucked, sold (if you can call storing them away in Teddy’s loft ‘sold’). My returning trunk, instead of being filled with an array of colorful dresses was now stashed with jeans, everything from skinnies to a bootleg cut. I had recited my wardrobe to the girls, when I was settled back in, I would give all of my dresses to Lily; she loves them. Considering the ones that weren’t worthy of even letting Lily see (due to their pathetic and tattered state) was actually the majority. I would only have two or three left for me to wear personally. But this is it, a new start. It’s a new year, a new life, a new rumor, a new me.

I had grown an inch or two since September, now making me seem excessively taller than before. A black scarf was wrapped strategically around my neck with a knee-length teal coat. I wore little black lace-up fabric shoes. Dom really out did herself. She even pinned me down for make-up. Victoire said she simply loved having a doll. I felt an overwhelming amount of pity for little Louis.

“This is it,” Teddy said lamely. But not before opening his arms and pulling me in to a tight hug. “Remember, if any of those kids give you jip – just threaten to eat them. They don’t know the truth.”

I smacked him lightly in the chest and pulled away. “I’ll miss you Teddy.”

“You too Lil’ bit.” I smiled at the nickname, suddenly I felt like a child once again, a child with no prospects, no worries, and then I face the fireplace and it all came rushing back. Shrugged my coat off and folded it over my arm.

With a simple wave I stepped in to the fireplace, my small trunk in one hand and a palm full of black and sooty powder in the other.

“Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry,” I said clearly.

I twirled through the fireplace at top speed, gripping to my trunk for dear life. I choked on the floo powder as I cleverly inhaled it while passing what seemed like the hundredth fireplace. I hated floo travel; it made me nauseous. I allowed the colours to consume me, the twirling and the twisting in every direction. It wasn’t until I spotted the large, stone fireplace of the Professors Fire place that I stepped out a foot and jumped in to the empty room.

I couched out a mouthful of black powder in to my hands and accepted the tissue flown to me in a familiar manner. A small amount of inner happiness took over involuntarily as I remembered the reason upon my return; I could see my friends again, perform magic. However that small nagging inclining the back of my head was still there, I pushed it aside; it had no business being in my mind.

“Welcome back, Miss Price.” Professor McGonagall said, not once did she tare her gaze away from her paper. But I received a warm smile from Professor Dumbledore. His portrait always was the best. “Please wipe your feet on to the rug before you.”

I put my trunk down on to the stone beneath my feet and unfolded my coat and shook it. I wiped my hands down my jeans and put the coat roughly back on, running my hand once through my hair. I stepped on to the rug before me and scraped my shoes on the mat.

“Thank you,” the Professor said calmly. “I see you’ve enjoyed your trip,” She said with a smile and looking me up and down.

I nodded once and summoned my trunk with my wand. “Very much, thank you.” She looked back to her parchment, picking up her quill once more. “Thank you, Professor, for making me go, it was the right decision.”

She smiled knowingly. “It was the only decision; you were loosing your grip, Charisma.” My fingers found the pockets of my new coat. “I’m glad that you have found it again. Now, Mr Wilkins will meet you in the library at eight o’clock tomorrow evening. You have permission to be out past curfew. I believe that you both have some questions that need to be answered.”

Apart from wanting to bash me around the back of the head for waking him up at an ungodly hour of the morning and then making him walk me around the castle, I couldn’t imagine Dan wanting to say anything to me. Infact, because of that, I couldn’t imagine why he would want to speak to me.

“Your time table will resume as normal tomorrow morning, I expect nothing out of the ordinary from you.” she said, before dismissing me kindly and returning to her work. “Oh and one more thing,” she lifted her wand and with a simple flick, it was gone. It just disappeared in the air with a little poof noise, the noise that Albus makes when you poke him really hard.

I smiled and nodded gratefully before descending the stairs from her office and closing the door with a light bang behind me. I shoved my hands in to the pockets of my coat and suddenly wished that I was wearing one of my dresses. Jeans felt wired. Muggle clothing was a tradition here at Hogwarts, you only wore robes for school, formal dances, gatherings or if your job required it.

I walked down the familiar corridor, a light skip coming back to my step. The skip had gone; I had lost it at Christmas. Even this little bop in my step was a good sign. I missed it. It wasn’t until I reached the corner and saw a group of third year Hufflepuffs, one girl looked away while another looked to the floor. But it was the third girl, the one closest to the wall that shocked me. She looked me straight in the eye, scowled and walked away. I could already tell that the next few weeks were going to be hell. I needed to find my feet, and quick.

It didn’t help when I reached the main stair case I came face to face with the one person I didn’t think that I could see. Literally, I came face to face, I actually ran in to them while trying to hide my expression by looking at the floor.

I looked up in to the blue eyes of Kyle Sanford. He wore a similar expression to mine; absence, pity, guilt and fear. Bruises and cuts littered his shocked face; I’m assuming they are the ones that Madame Brandon couldn’t heal.

“Kyle,” I whispered, jumping one step down, one step away from him. “If you’ll excuse me,” I said politely. I stood to the right and walked past him, meeting another face.

This welcome was different. The strong-beater-trained arms of Andrew Wood enveloped me; he lifted me off of the floor and spun me around on the steps. “Charisma,” he begged. Drew placed me back on the floor; my feet landed delicately one after the other. He looked in to my eyes and ruffled my hair. It seemed off seeing him hatless. “I am so sorry.” He said each syllable like it was a lifeline. “I am such a douche. I should have listened to you, not to rumor. James is a dick, Kyle is a dick – Yes, I know that you are right there, don’t look at me like that, you are – Heck, love, I am a dick!”

I smirked a little, a small tear coming to my eye. “I have known you for six years now; you’ve been nothing but a complete angel to me, why should I care if you have webbed feet, or even a beak for crying out loud!” I suppose it was easier for him to say that rather than point out my actual faults.

“You have no idea what hearing that has done to me.” I breathed, wrapping my arms tightly around his neck.

“From the tightness of this hug,” he said melodramatically pretending to be strangled. “I am assuming it’s a good thing.”

He bopped my nose as I let go and planted a kiss upon my forehead. I smiled. “It’s a very good thing.”

“What’s gotten in to you?” The voice didn’t belong to Drew, nor was it mine. “Andy, why are you apologizing?”

Drew pushed me aside a little and stood infront of me. “My question is, why aren’t you, Kyle?”

“I have no reason to,” He spat, pointing a bruised finger at me. “How can you even talk to, that, that thing?”

This would be the time for James’s arrival. Where he would heroically ride around the corner on a white horse and bravely come to my rescue. But instead, I had something better, I had Drew. I had a pissed off, over-protective, Scottish Quidditch-Nazi standing infront of me, making sure I was ok for every second of my life.

Kyle was prepared for many things, probably even for me to attack him. Infact, I am sure that if what he was prepared for the most. It was what he had convinced himself. What he wasn’t prepared for, however, was his brother-from-another-mother to pull his wand from his jeans pocket and send him flying down the last three steps of the staircase. He landed with a loud crash on the floor. I could assume that Drew didn’t want to hurt him internally; hence he didn’t send him through the floor and on the floor beneath us. Kyle could expect a heck of a lot of violence to come his way if he kept talking to me like that.

This shut Kyle right up.

“There was an emergency assembly held in the hall at breakfast on Saturday morning,” Drew explained. “They said that we couldn’t muggle-fight, nor could we use curses. Anyone who did would be expelled from Hogwarts.” I looked to him desperately. “But they didn’t say that we couldn’t use charms and hexes.”

“What the fuc-“Kyle spat, rising from the floor slowly and rubbing the back of his head. “Drew!”

“She may be different, but you know as well as I do that she is Charisma. She always has been and always will be.” He was physically shaking with anger as he spoke to his best friend. “There is no bloody way that you get to talk about her like that.” Kyle didn’t look him in the eye. “She’s the sweetest person that we know, you know that.”

I felt a shocked smile creep up on to my face with gratitude towards Andrew. It was then that I noticed Kyle’s expression. He felt betrayed, kind of like I did. For a spilt moment, I could relate to him. Drew hired his wand once more, but I pushed it down.

“Don’t,” I whispered. “Don’t do to him what James did to me.” Drew looked thoroughly confused. “Don’t ruin your friendship over me.”

“Our friendship is already ruined.” He spat. “He did that when he decided to attack innocent people.”


I turned to the voice behind me and marched over to him, cutting off his word. “No, you don’t get to talk.” He seemed a little taken back by my speaking. He had never seen me stand up for myself. “I have never hurt a person in my life,” I thought of Evie, “Who didn’t deserve it.” I added for safe measure. “I in no way deserved what you did to me.”

“You didn’t just get hexed by your best friend!” He yelled, shaking, a little of his spit flew from his mouth and on to me as he shouted. He was at least attempting to hold his anger.

I looked in to his eyes, trying to find some sort of the Kyle that I knew nothing. “Yes I did.” He looked down to me. “Friday night, I was hexed by a person I thought was my best friend. I was wrong.”

Not one look of guilt took to his features. “I did the right thing.” I bit back a snarl. “You’re a danger to others, you’re not human you’re a mons-“

My fist came from no where. But it plunged in to his nose. My wand was in my back pocket, I wouldn’t have had time to grab it without Kyle guessing what I was doing. So I did the next best thing. I couldn’t hear that word, not again. Not spoken with distain. Not even thought. Because deep down I knew it was true.

I turned to Drew, ignoring Kyle’s cries of pain and protest behind me. Andrew looked to me with a mixture of shock and approval. “I just punched Kyle.” I said lamely.

“You just punched Kyle.” He nodded his head.

Leaning forward and grabbing my arm, he pulled me up the stairs. We didn’t stop with the running until we reach the painting of the Fat Lady. He said the password as we reached the top of their stair case and she swung open, revealing a Common Room of working students.

I hadn’t taken in my surroundings as I ran. I could have seen many students looking at me with distain, or hatred. Maybe there would have been looks of pity. Perhaps no one would have looked. Maybe no one cared. Maybe they didn’t know. But that was highly unlikely, especially considering I had been glare-owned by a third year Hufflepuff.

Drew lifted me up by wrapping his arms around my waist and hopping me over the Portrait boundary, she snapped shut. “Charisma!” Lily shouted, smacking her books from her lap and running towards me. She stopped as she saw my expression.

“I just punched Kyle.”

She looked thoroughly confused, a little like Drew’s earlier expression. Within a matter of seconds, Fred and were amount the few students gathered at the portrait hole. James wasn’t there, neither was Elle. Polly strolled over and hugged me from the side.

Drew looked to Dixie. “She just punched Kyle.”

“You just punched Kyle?”

I looked to Dixie; her honey blonde hair seemed scruffier than usual. “I just punched Kyle.”

Fred smiled. “Awesome. You punched Kyle.” He turned around and shouted to the population of the Common Room. “Oi, get this, Charisma just punched Kyle!”

An anonymous ‘Whoop’ came from over in the corner while I heard some more books drop to the floor. Lily was the next to speak.

“I can’t believe that you punched Kyle.”

“I punched Kyle.”

Polly stepped back from hugging me and stood by Lily. “I think it was brave,” she said. “Punching him; he was mean to you.”

I looked up at Drew who shrugged. “We told you when we hired her for keeper that she was a little you.”

I crouched down and looked Polly in the eye, her little brown curls were unruly and her dress reached her knees. “Do you have a best friend Polly?”

She nodded. “His name is Eddie,” she said quietly. “He is over there.” She pointed to a tall blonde boy, sat with a tiny snitch, her twirled it in his fingers and ran a hand nervously through his messy locks. Lily blinked twice.

“Did you go to his house for Christmas last year?” I asked slowly. She shook her head.

“No, my Grandmother wouldn’t let me go.”

“You live with your Grandmother?”

She nodded and looked at my confused expression. “For a few years now, my parents were never really in the picture.”

My eyes grew wide and my smiled grew big. “Polly, there is something that I want you to do.” I said sweetly. She nodded, intrigued. “In a few years, you’re going to experience some feelings towards Eddie, ones that you’re not sure about. I want you to trust them. Jump at them before you can think twice. Don’t even consider the consequences; just follow what your heart tells you.”

She looked confused. Drew laughed. “Now that you’re done confusing ‘Tiny Charisma’, you wanna go to the sofas?”

Lily laughed at the 6’3 beater skipping to the sofa’s like a show girl before falling backwards over the arm and landing on his back. I stepped towards Dixie who hugged me tighter than any girl had ever done before. She smacked me lightly on the cheek. “Don’t ever scare me like that again.” I nodded obediently. “And next time that you punch someone, I really have to be there.” She let go and turned to Fred. “I keep fricking missing it!”

“Dixie, I doubt that she actually wants people to witness this happening.” Lily said supportively, opening the magazine that was in her hand after shoving Drew’s legs off of the sofa and sitting down.

I made a face. “I’d rather you didn’t.”

Dixie narrowed her eyes. I could see that she had a reply before Freddy cut her off. “I love your hair!”

“Oh my Merlin!” Lily cried, chucking aside her magazine and dragging me over to the sofas. “It’s gone! And your legs-“

“They’re covered with material other than tights!” Fred chuckled and picked me up from the ground. “You look good Charisma.”

“Real good,” Drew said, picking his head up from a pillow.

I summoned Lily’s magazine back with my wand and pushed it roughly back in to my pocket. Sitting down, I pushed up Drew and he placed his arm along the back of the sofa behind my head. I pulled a pillow to my chest and pulled my knees up with it. My shoes were on the sofa, and for once I didn’t care, nor did anyone point it out.

“Did you let Dom get a hold of you?” Lily asked persistently.

I made a face, similar to Dixie’s hesitant stare. “She sorta just came over with the scissors.”


I nodded along with Freddy and sniggered after only a moment. I looked at Drew and noticed his missing item. I gasped and pulled my bag up from the floor. “Drew, love,” I said, stealing his word. “I have something for you…”

His face lit up as I pulled out a large grey beanie hat. He snatched it back and sniffed it in an obsessive manner. Freddy looked slightly estranged. “But…I gave it to you.” He admitted, solemnly handing it back.

“And now I’m giving it back,” I grinned cheekily, placing it in to his lap. “You know that you want it, you know you love it!”

Drew narrowed his eyes and shoved it greedily on to his head. “I knew there was a reason that I loved you.”

“And it’s not for your charm or personality either,” Fred said loudly, laughing a bit. “I think it might be because of your complete innocence or massive-” insert elbow by Dixie, “…Ow, perso…nality.” He improvised poorly.

“Good save,” I muttered.

Lily snapped her book shut. “So what happened?”

“Excuse me?”

“With the moon,” said Fred, he seemed unable to keep the noise down. “What?” he asked. “It’s not like we need to keep it down anymore.” I pondered; he did have a point. A few of the younger years went back to their studies, but I could see they were still listening. “I saw that Ravenclaw Prick hand you Wolfsbane.”

“Dan, Freddy,” Lily grumbled. “His name is Dan.”

“Right, sorry,” Fred paused, faking a striking thought. “Yeah, don’t care. What was it like? Did you still loose your mind?”

I blushed a little, expecting Drew to flinch away from me, or to have Dixie squint her eyes in slight disgust, but neither happened. I was embarrassed to be talking of my antics infront of anyone, let alone people who hardly knew of my condition; even if they were my friends. I flopped my hands in to my lap and lamely looked towards Dixie. She smiled kindly, not an expression usually worn on her face in a time like this.

“Sweetie, if it’s any consolation, what you are doesn’t bother us.” She gestured to Drew and to herself. I wondered, if it was such an easy thing to contemplate, why couldn’t she say the word? “If anything, it’s a little of a relief.”

“A relief?” I cried. “You loose your mind and attack people, and then you tell me if you still think it’s a fricking relief!”

Fred leaned back, “Oh don’t start.” He wrapped his arms around Dixie’s tiny waist and pulled her in to the chair with him. “Charisma, you know that she didn’t mean it like that.”

Lily snorted. “You of all people would know.”

“What’s that supposed to mean?”

“Can we not do this now?” asked Drew. He looked to the floor before returning his gaze to match mine. “What do you mean a relief?”

“I was scared,” Dixie admitted. “All those months ago, you came back to the common room in blood.” Lily gasped while I nodded in remembrance. “I thought that you’d gone native or something.”

“Then there was the whole, disappearing every moon thing,” Drew added. “Ellie and I thought that you and James were bonking at one point.” I snorted as Fred simply looked in the other direction, trying to hide his laughter. “What’s Wolfsbane?”

“My lifeline.” I whispered. “It’s a potion that I take before the moon and I can keep my mind. Considering that I don’t change; my mind is the only thing I loose, I am fine when it comes to the full moon.”

“Fine?” Lily asked, “So, nothing happened? You just merrily skipped along last night?”

“Pretty much,” I said with a smile. “Teddy and I sat in the forest, downed the bottles and waited for the moon to rise.” I sighed in memory. “As it did, Teddy transformed, but I only felt a little icky.”

“Increased icky-ness,” Dixie mused. “That’s a bad sign.”

Smiling, I pulled my knees tighter to my chest. “Teddy was a wolf, but I was fine, and in effect, so was he. We played fetch for a while, before I walked home, had a cup of tea and fell asleep on the sofa.” I looked Fred in the eye as he matched my smile. “It was the best night of my life.”

“You’re easily pleased.” Drew said.

Dixie nodded wholeheartedly while the other two rolled their eyes. “Sure,” Lily said. She held the syllable for longer than necessary. “You look after her for the moon and then say that again.”

“I don’t recall you ever doing it, Lily?” Fred mused, folding his arms over Dixie’s stomach.

“Me?” she cried, chucking her magazine across the room and knocking a few robes off of their hooks in the corner. “She would bloody kill me!” my heart stopped. “She broke both your arms in third year after you pulled her off of James.”

“Lily!” He growled, tugging on her hair. Her hand immediately shot to her mouth and her words ceased.

“It’s ok,” I amended. “I know that I’m a hassle.”

Freddy snorted. “It’s worth it.” I smiled while staring at the floor. “I don’t know what I would do without you ‘round Charisma.”

I twisted my thumbs as Lily went to pick back up her magazine. Freddy still had his arms wrapped around Dixie while Drew simply smiled and tapped his feet against the carpet. It was a comfortable silence. “Can I state the obvious?”

“Sure,” I shrugged. “Go ahead Dix.”

She smiled and sat up, grudgingly pulling herself away from Fred. “This is why people call you ‘Wolfy’, because you’re a wolf?”

I nodded and laughed a little bit. “Technically yes, but no one’s really called me it since Christmas.”

“We didn’t think it would be appropriate,” Lily said, collapsing back in to the sofa cushions. “You’ve grown, Charisma, when the time was right to start calling you by it again, it didn’t seem to fit.”

I nodded halfheartedly while Freddy pulled a cushion close to his chest. “After Christmas, I didn’t think that you’d recover, but you pulled through.” If completely honest, it wasn’t something that I wished to talk about. “You can pull through anything. Even this pile of crap that Jimmy-boy threw us all in to.”

“Us?” I questioned strategically.

“Yes, us!” Dixie snapped happily. “You didn’t think that you would reveal something so big, and that we would leave you to it?” I mumbled incoherently. “Well we’re not. We will be by your side ‘till the day we die.”

“You’ll never get rid of us,” added Drew. “We will be overly persistent.”

I was quickly realizing that neither of my friends was slow; they were all intelligent. Without anyone saying a word, they had managed to put the pieces of my life together and form a story that would satisfy their minds. What they wanted to believe was what I would let them. They didn’t need to know everything, they didn’t need to know every pinikity detail of my secrets. But they knew enough, and they hadn’t run.

Voicing my thoughts, I asked “Why aren’t you running away?”

“You want us to?” Dixie asked with a snort. “Cause it’s not too late. The portrait hole is just there, if you walk in with a snake, I will actually just run…no turning back.” I laughed at Dixie’s rambling. She was deathly afraid of snakes. As you could imagine, this didn’t put her on to the best of terms with the Slytherins.

Drew tugged on a strand of my hair. “We’re not running. We’ve already said, we’re ok with it. So is Ellie, despite her disappearance…” He trailed off and sent a pointed look towards Dixie.

“Oh don’t you go blaming her, Wood!” She sneered. “She’s just confused. She loves Kyle, but she doesn’t want to leave Charisma. She is loyal, you know that. She is just…stuck. She’ll come around.”

“She doesn’t have to.” I said. “Kyle may be a bit of a twat, but in a sense, he has done nothing wrong. He was just scared.” I looked up, pulling my gaze from the floor. I saw my friends sitting with open mouths and giddy expressions. “What?”


Freddy laughed. “I have never heard you swear so…”

“-Freely?” Drew offered.

“Kyle is a twat,” Lily sniggered. “I’m just glad that it was you who said it. If any of us had, it wouldn’t have been funny.”

“It wasn’t meant to be funny.” I defended.

“Oh Merlin! Don’t get me started on funny.” Freddy laughed, again, way too loudly. More heads from the corner of the dark Common Room, apart from the roaring fire, only a few lamps hung from the walls to claim leadership of our light source. “On Saturday night…the…the Great Hall…McGonagall’s face…peg…and then the Hufflepuffs…dancing…Flitch!” Only the odd word was determinable throughout his hysterics.

Dixie sighed. “On Saturday night, James decided to pull a prank. When students came in to the great hall, depending on your house depended on what happened to you.” She explained. “Let’s just say that the amount of Hufflepuffs with burns wasn’t what Madame Brandon hoped for at the feast.”

Lily sighed. “You don’t even want to know what happened to the Slytherins.”

“But,” I stammered easily. “What about Al…and Scorpius?”

Drew leaned back, leaning his head against the back of the sofa. “You know, I think that he made it worse for the Slytherins, because, of Scorpius.”

“Yes, Drew.” Dixie intervened. “We all know what you think.”

“I don’t.” I said in a confused manner. “I would like to hear this.”

Fred, still laughing made no attempt to stop Drew from his story. Dixie on the other hand, seemed persistent in keeping it a secret, “Maybe another time?”

“If she wants to hear it,” Drew insisted. I could tell he was desperate to tell his story; he reminds me of a child with his opinions. He always likes good to triumph over evil, for the Prince to save the damsel and they run away and live happily ever after.

In our second year, Drew and I would scurry away to the library when no body else was around and read Muggle fairytales, when we had memorized them we began on the Wizards, although they were a little more tricky to follow. Drew was my story buddy. You could always count on his to jazz up an awkward and possibly solemn situation. However, he is also known to exaggerate. This story might involve a death…or a plane crash.

Andrew took a deep breath before beginning to speak. His story was fast; I had to strain my ears to catch up. “James ran after you on Friday, after Kyle decided to ruin his life and I gave you my hat. Thanks for giving it back by the way. But you spent the night with the Slytherins; Scorpius stopped him in the corridor and had ‘stern words’ with him, if you catch my meaning. So he ran after you, but got locked out and couldn’t figure out the password to their Common Room.” He stopped and took a deep breath. Was he only going to tell me what I already knew? “He came back here ‘fell down the stairs’ with Kyle, and spent the night in the Hospital Wing. He was pissed off Charisma, I mean seriously pissed off, but not with you, with Malfoy, and Kyle and Dan-“

“-Wait,” I intervened, wrongly interrupting Drew’s story. “Why is James upset with Dan?”

Dixie shrugged. “We don’t know, he won’t say. Just let the poor boy resume his pathetic story with vivid hang gestures. I think he may explode otherwise.”

I waved my hand, gesturing him to return to his tale. “So, I wake up at like two in the morning to an empty dorm.” He cheekily looked to Fred who shrugged nonchalantly. “Except for James, who was trudging around the room like a mad-man and knocking stuff over. He actually tore the drapes from the bed. I calmed him down – took me over an hour mind you – and he set his anger in to pulling a long awaited prank.”

“He hasn’t pulled pranks all year,” I said, stating the obvious. James had matured beyond pranks and mischief, although he still gets that glint in his eye when he sees an opportunity. His pranks are legendary; he takes after his Grandfather. “It was about time.”

Drew laughed. “Well this one certainly made up for it. There were drapes and screaming, the Ravenclaw’s danced involuntary while their women began to strip, he got in trouble for that one.”

“How did they find out it was him?” I asked.

Dixie snorted. “Stupid mistake actually. This is where Drew’s theory comes in-“

“-then allow me to tell it Dixie-Pixie.” She rolled her eyes; genuinely hoping that nickname was not on it’s way back in to fashion. “You see, when the Slytherins had gained enough of their brain function back – don’t ask – Scorpius got up and walked over to the Gryffindor table, James met him half way and they began to argue.”

“It was more hushed tones they used.” Fred explained. “So no one could really hear what they were saying.”

Drew’s eyes turned towards me, his hair fell in to his eyes. “After about three minutes, James pulled out his wand, that’s when the teachers got involved. He got carted off to McGonagall’s office while Scorpius laughed and returned to his seat. Rose refuses to speak to James and it’s a little rocky with Scorpius lately too.”

“Is that where he is?” I asked, finally voicing the question that had been plaguing my mind since I arrived back at Hogwarts. “James? Is he in detention?”

Lily nodded. “It’s where he’s been since yesterday, he did a full Sunday job, and then he has it every night after dinner this week.”

“Let’s face it,” Dixie mused. “James Potter is the only person in Hogwarts who could plan a prank of that proportion and pull it off. It was obvious who did it.”

“I reckon you’re right.” I admitted with a smile. “He’s one of a kind.” Drew began to speak but I roughly placed a finger to his lips. With a gasp I spoke, all secret agent like, “One word?” I questioned. “Evie?”

Lily cackled like a witch, no pun. “O.V.E.R!” She spelled, shaking her legs with a giddy excitement only seem by children.

“James ended it on Friday,” Dixie explained. She seemed to be elaborating a lot for me today. “Before all the commotion I mean, she blew her lid.”

“Mental patient,” Lily mouthed as she rolled her magazine in her hands.

Fred rolled his eyes at his younger cousin. “She may have caused a bit of a scene.”

I groaned and put my hands to my face. “Go on!” I said playfully. “We’re already story telling, we may as well have the lot.”

Someone laughed, I think it was Lily. “Basically, the next morning at breakfast, people were really worried, and cautious and stuff-“

“-Yeah, you know. Cause you’re a people-eater and stuff, and you growl.”

“Fred, shut up.” I laughed, for the first time in weeks, I properly laughed. Not a sweet laugh, not a giggle nor a sigh. A belly laugh.

Apparently it was contagious. I laughed, which ticked off Lily. She giggled and her smile set off Drew. Before long Dixie was laughing, Fred’s laugh was the loudest. A few people in the corners were joining in too. Lily squealed and rolled off of the sofa, taking a seat cushion with her.

Minutes later, it had dies out but the smiles were still evident on out faces.

“I missed the show,” Dixie said. “The show being the biggest break up of the year. But I do believe the word ‘Mongrel’ and ‘Ugly slut’ was thrown around a little.”

I snorted in a lady like manner. “Ugly slut being me?”

With a nod she continued. “Basically, she believes that you and James were shagging while they were going out. She wants to kill you.”

“And claw your eyes out.”

I didn’t particularly blame her. “I hope that she kills me first,” I received an array of confused glances. “Because if she clawed my eyes out first it would hurt.”

Fred smiled. “I was there though, best show of the year that was.” I rolled my eyes, this would never be lived down. “Lewis refused to believe that he had broken up with her and that it was ‘A simple mental breakdown’,” his imitation of Evie was rather impressive, he had the hand movements down and everything. “So she walks in acting like the slag that she is and sits down next to James, who simply tells her to Fuck off.”

“It ended with James walking out of the hall with a perfect hand print imprinted on to his face and claw marks in his cheek.”

Vivid Drew, very vivid, “Then what happened?”

Lily shrugged. “She threatened that he better not be dumping her for the Mongrel or she will kill him.”

“You ugly slut.” Dixie said, receiving a pillow to the face.

“So,” Drew asked a few second later, handing me a chocolate frog from the table beside us. “Did he?”

“Did he what?”

“Dump her for a Mongrel?” Lily finished, thank god for the blunt little sister.

I frowned towards her, “Can we stop referring to me as a Mongrel please?”

“Would ugly slut be better?”

“Fred, you’re not funny.” I stated, unwrapping the delicious treat.

He grinned at the crumpled wrapper I threw at him, ducking and dodging it by a centimeter, bloody beater reflexes. “Yes I am.”

I chose to ignore his comment and stuffed the moving chocolate in to my mouth. I looked at my adoring fan’s faces, once more taking in the shocked looks. “If I waited any longer…it would have hopped away,” I added with a swallow. The first half was spoken with the accompaniment of chocolate, so I assume it came out something like ‘mpffhfumywonga’. Swallowing my last mouth full put the wrapped back in to the bowl.

“Don’t evade the question.” Lily ordered, shaking her head.

I recognized her tormenting smile, I was the one she wore when daring her brothers. She was ready for a challenge, a fight. She would wrestle this out of me if she had to. So I have her a straight answer. “No he didn’t.” If anything, she looked disappointed. “Or if he did he’s keeping it a secret.”

“Lillers, did it ever occur to you that he dumped her because she is a rotten slag?” Fred asked.

“Tactful,” I teased. “Besides, I don’t think that I will be testing her threat anytime soon.”
“What? Of her questioning his life?” Lily asked. “But you could just eat her. Now everybody knows about it, you don’t have to keep your cannibalism a secret anymore.”
It was at this moment that a group of gossiping second years climbed through the portrait hole. Their red scarves were wrapped tightly around their necks.

“You’ll never guess what I heard this morning.” A young boy said, bringing to the matter of conversation. His companions shook their heads and so he resumed. “I heard that she got ruthlessly clawing out the eyes of a group of young third years. But it was a group of Slytherins though, so I guess it’s not all that bad.”

“And she is still in school?” Another squeaked. I slumped down in to the chair a little and sent a raging Dixie a look that read Shhh. I wanted to hear this.

“I suppose it wouldn’t really make much of a difference. It’s either she’s locked up here, or she is let loose on the world.”

A tug of hurt pulled through me. “She would be better locked up in Azkaban.”

“But there has been a lot of Werewolves recently right?” The questioner asked once more. He answered his own query before giving anyone else the chance. “I was doing some research in the library-“ insert unsuspected groan from his friends “-and there have been three known Werewolves attending Hogwarts in the past ten or so years, including Charisma.”

A girl shrugged. “Well, I trust McGonagall, if she thinks that she is safe enough to have in school…then so be it.”

“You’re just saying that because you have a crush on James Potter.”

The girl blushed. “Well who doesn’t?”

“Me?” The boy questioned, one of their many companions sniggered. “Don’t laugh, it’s true, you might though.” This earned him a punch. “Oh well, I also heard that its James’s fault that she’s a … well, what she is.”

“A Werewolf, George, she is a Werewolf.”

“I heard that James is a wolf too, and that he was the one that turned her.” Another boy piped up from beside him.

“I thought that it was the other way around.” Yet another said, desperate to be a part of the conversation.

“That wouldn’t be too bad.” The girl said, she earned a chorus of looks that flickered with disbelief. “Don’t look at me like that, I mean at least she isn’t alone then. Think if they had babies; they’re both good looking, so they would have beautiful children.”

“That would unleash a new race of half-breeds to walk among us?” George questioned. “I don’t think so.”

“Well, you’ve all got it wrong – James is really in love with that Dixie girl, Charisma is just a cover, and they needed a story to cover it all up from their friends finding out. Price only went away from the weekend to get away from the rumors.” Well, at least this one was half right.

“Dixie-girl?” Dix hissed, her voice barely louder than a whisper. I could see the visible strain on her face that it took not to slaughter every one of them. She seems to have discarded the fact they assumed James was in love with her, she only heard her name.

“That’s bollocks Vicky.” Georgie said through laughter. “Stop being such a girl on us, yeah?” She blushed once more.

“I heard that she is really a fairy, that’s why she skips around all the time-”

“-something about Malfoy, apparently they’re sleeping together.”

“I thought she had killed a second year…”

“…Oh, but isn’t she dating Harper, the Ravenclaw prefect?”

“The second year’s parents are going to sue to school. They’re not happy about the death of their child.”

“Understandably, Ronald.”

“I heard that she got caught heartlessly murdering a group of small Gryffindor gossipers. She cut out their tongues and stuck them in their ears, far enough to stay in there for eternity. Then she erased their memories, fed them to the dementors and fed their fingers to a Hippogriff, while still attached to their hands.”

The group of students turned to stare at me. A few wore expressions of horror, another of concern. Vicky and George wore guilt. The one that I assume was Ronald looked a little scared. Realization hit them as they acknowledged who I was. They quickly looked away and ran up the dormitory staircase.

When they were out of sight, Fred’s dramatically enthused expression fell in to a smirk. “Heavy on the insanity there much Charisma?”

“I’m in an insane mood.” I muttered with my arms folded. The little excitement of what I had conjured for returning to Hogwarts, had been demolished completely. This day was a mean one. I had been butchered by a crazy blonde with a pare of kitchen scissors, shoved in and out of a wardrobe many times, taken a floo, got in a fight with my best friend, punched him in the face, demeaned and slandered by a group of children and already started a rumor…about myself.

“If it means much,” Fred intervened. “They don’t usually gossip in the Common Room. I let Dixie loose – they don’t talk much after that.” He earned a slap before he pulled her closer in to his lap.

“Come on, love – look on the bright side.” I looked to Drew and ignored his free hand that was nudging me. “Lewis is terrified of you, think of what you could do.”

“She doesn’t remember much of her argument.” Dixie said playfully, twisting her wand between her fingers. “Memory charms come in handy.”

I smiled. “What did you do Pruitt?”

“Little old me?” she taunted. “I did nothing. It was my pesky wand I tell you.” I rolled my eyes playfully and laughed along with Lily. “She may have just innocently have been hexed for a few days straight. It was too late to memory charm her before she could tell anyone, fast little bugger she is – I should know, it was I who chased her around the school. But we got her in time to shake her up a little.”

“All in all,” Lily sighed. “She’s yours for the tormenting.”

Dixie smiled coyly. “So many choices, so little time.” 

AN; Guys and Gals, what do you think should happen to Evie? How many of you are glad that Drew and Dixie have come around. How many of you are smiling at the fact that Kyle is in the Hospital Wing (don’t worry, we are all a little creepy in some way here).

What do you all really fancy? I mean, I only ask this because I am currently experiencing a desperate (and slightly pathetic) craving for orange squash.

Did anyone else fall for the April fool’s joke? I certainly did. I had been having a really bad two weeks (including many sickness bugs) and actually cried when they got rid of the format – when I clicked on my story and the notice came up that my story (and my favorite stories) were getting taken down because they had a mature rating, I felt like my guts had fallen out of my bum. I then ran around for about six hours ranting to anyone who would listen how ‘it’s a travesty that this site has changed like this!’ (I now have a poor defenseless waitress down at the local coffee shop that I have to apologize to. I was only meeting my Nannie there, and I think that I may have ruined this person’s life, I am not actually exaggerating). I am the most gullible person in the world. Shoot me now. :P

Preview of the next one? It’s called Painting Talk and Butterflies.

I sighed, knowing this would quickly turn to a lecture. “Every student has troubles; they parade them on their faces. Their expressions would show all. But you…you were different.”

“Because I’m a dog and I am apparently having a secret affair with Scorpius Malfoy after feeding the fingers of student to Hippogriffs?”

A little different to the mood currently affecting the story huh?

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