Disclaimer: I do not own Harry Potter. Nor do I own the awesome The Office quote that I picked out - hopefully you guys recognize it - or the quote that huffleherbs gave me to use in this challenge entry.
Hey, guys! This is my challenge entry for huffleherbs' "Wait, What?" Challenge. It's pretty awesome. So I think.
Hey, guys! This is my challenge entry for huffleherbs' "Wait, What?" Challenge. It's pretty awesome. So I think.
People say I’m insane.
Well. Isn’t that a wonderful way to start off a monologue about my crazy, strange, chaotic, odd, peculiar way of life. It sure is fitting, I’ll give myself that much, but it’s not one of those catchy one-liners that seems to frequent the pages of the most popular books of the century.
“Call me Ishmael!”
“People say I’m insane.”
There’s really no comparison here, I suppose.
Damn you and your excellent novel-starting skills to hell, Herman Melville. Damn. You. To. Hell.
Alright, back to the main story here – people say I’m insane. And I’m not gonna say they’re wrong. Because they’re totally not. I am out of my fucking mind. And if you lived this life, you would be pretty damn crazy too. Trust me.
Oh, what’s so horrible about my life that it makes me lose my mind every day and act so fucking barmy that people wonder if they should send me to St. Mungo’s? Do you really want to know? Are you sure?
I’m the Keeper for Puddlemere United. That sounds normal enough, yes? Well… it’s not.
All I do is Quidditch. I breathe Quidditch. I dream Quidditch. I talk Quidditch. My meals, my sleeping schedule, my dating life… it’s all centered around Quidditch. Quidditch, Quidditch, Quidditch. I can’t go a single second in any situation without thinking about Quidditch, talking about Quidditch, wishing I was playing Quidditch. My entire life is Quidditch. And it’s worth it – all for the thrill of the game.
Oh, the thrill of the game. It’s what keeps me breathing and living every day. It wakes me up in the morning, drags me from my comfortable quilt and goose-down pillows, throws me into a frigid shower with reluctant preparedness for the chill, makes the instant coffee I drink in a hurry satisfy my craving for caffeine, forces me to ignore the sore muscles, and encourages me to continue on this reckless path that I’ve picked up.
Wow, I sound sappy. I’m in love with Quidditch. What the fuck is wrong with me?
Yeah, yeah, you don’t even have to guess who I am now, do you? I’ve given myself away with my ramblings about the importance of Quidditch to my life.
Ha, you all think I’m Oliver Wood, don’t you?
You’re off your rocker.
That was about… oh, I don’t know, twenty years ago?
I’m not even a bloke. Come on.
I’m Lily Potter. The second one. The more awesome one. (Oh. I shouldn’t say that. That woman was my grandma. I take it back, I take it back, I take it back.)
Not many can say that the thrill of the game captures them enough so that they go absolutely and one hundred percent bonkers, as I have. Perhaps it is only me, willing to undergo all of the suffering that comes along with the game for the moment of glory as I capture the Quaffle before it can soar through a hoop on my team’s side of the pitch, listening to the roar of the crowd filling the stands around the pitch, hearing the satisfied applause from the owner’s box only meters away from where I hover.
To me, the scars where bones have poked through my flesh, the sore, swollen, tortured muscles, and my permanently crooked nose are all worth suffering through, if only I can play Quidditch and play it well.
It’s genuine insanity – but I like it that way. I like the insanity. I thrive in the insanity.
If that isn’t enough reasoning for why people tend to think I’m less than normal, here’s another curve-Quaffle for you. (Shh. I know there’s no logic behind a curve-Quaffle. Don’t burst my bubble. I can’t just say a curveball, can I? What kind of Keeper would I be if I said something like that?)
As I was saying… curve-Quaffle of my life:
I’m currently not working – not playing Quidditch, I mean.
That’s a euphemism – I think that’s the word… – for saying that I’ve been suspended – only temporarily, I hope – from Puddlemere United. So my living, breathing, drinking, eating, talking, etc. Quidditch… well, that’s all on hold at the moment. For the next six bloody matches, at least.
Why, you may ask, am I suspended from playing the sport I love so much?
Oh, it’s all because I’m a bloody redhead – damned Weasley and Potter genetics screwed me over on that one. I didn’t have a chance at birth. I was going to be a redhead no matter what. My brothers were lucky – black hair saves them from this damn temper – but I’m not lucky at all. Here I am – a redhead.
Translation: my temper is less than pleasant.
Further translation: I slammed a Beater’s bat into the face of a bitchy Seeker on the Harpy team who had tried to knock one of my teammates off their broomstick – not such a big deal, you say? Well, said altercation occurred half an hour after the match was over. And I’m not even a Beater.
Needless to say… no one was really happy with me after that little incident. The powers that be deliberated over it – not for very long, much to my aggravation – and decided within an hour that six matches worth of suspension – more if they changed their minds and decided to be very cruel and horrible – would be perfect punishment for causing someone severe facial damage.
Why they’re freaking out so badly, I don’t really know; the girl I hit with the bat was already ugly as it was, so it’s not like I ruined a great, classic beauty or anything. I didn’t. Six matches is a little extreme for hurting an ugly bitch. It felt good to hurt her, anyway.
Shut up. I don’t need anger management. I’m really sick of hearing that from people.
I said, stop saying I need anger management! Fuckers. Don’t make me get angry. I can find another Beater’s bat. Trust me.
Since my suspension began, my favorite place to brood and grumble over my own stupidity has become the bar of the Leaky Cauldron. I live in a tiny flat downtown, and nightly, I find myself Apparating here to the pub, where I nurse my frustrations away with firewhiskey and whatever other kind of alcohol the barmaids will let me get away with before sending me back home.
Home is too lonely for me to stay there for more than a poor night’s sleep; I’m very rarely home, as I spend most of my time practicing or going out with my teammates. I’m banned from practices as well as matches now, which makes for lonely days, and half of my teammates are furious with me for my instability that caused them to lose their prized Keeper, which ruins my nights. I’m a social creature – a bit too obsessed with Quidditch to meet a huge variety of people, but social nonetheless – and this suspension is no good for my social needs; I feel like I haven’t seen anyone but the barmaids and the landlady of the Leaky Cauldron since my suspension two weeks ago.
As much as I complain about my suspension and my current state of life, I know this shitty way of life is my own fault – my temper is unmanageable, and, yes, hitting someone with a Beater’s bat was probably not the best way to handle a problem that I had with them. Words would have sufficed, but I find no satisfaction in words – even vulgar, angry, loud, violent words. I only find pleasure in force. I’m a petite girl with a slender build, quick and agile, but the sound of my fist or something in my grasp colliding with the nose or the cheek of someone I passionately hate… well, that’s so much better than just screaming at someone, isn’t it?
Alright. I get it. I’m insane. Stop telling me that. I know I am. Merlin’s beard, you think people would stop telling me that after my twenty years of life, but no. You hit someone in the face with a Beater’s bat one damn time in public and you never hear the end of just how insane you are.
It’s not a stretch to say that I’m miserable without Quidditch – nor is it a long shot to assume that if I don’t get back to my beloved sport, I am going to lose the tiny shred of control over my brain that I still hold. There will be a lot more violence coming from me if I don’t get back to my game, damn it. I won’t hesitate to pull out my wand on a couple of those Ministry workers who decided upon my suspension terms… fuckers. I’ll get them. Mark my words, I will.
Okay. Maybe that’s taking it a bit too far. Hmm.
“You look chipper,” someone comments, sliding onto the empty barstool next to me at the bar.
I glance over, smiling weakly at the interruption from my mildly insane thoughts. He always knows where to find me.
Logan Wood – my lover.
He’s my best mate, and I love him. I’m madly, deeply, crazily, insanely in love with him, and it’s been that way since I was thirteen or so; I’ve known him since I was eleven. He’s been in my life since I can remember. I don’t know where I would be without him. He’s the sane voice to calm my murderous thoughts; the gorgeous heartthrob to counter my crooked nose and constantly scratched and bruised body; the Quidditch-obsessed Seeker who fills my heart and makes me complete.
Even though he doesn’t know that he’s any of those things to me… it doesn’t change the fact that he is.
Every time I see him, my head feels with a lovey-dovey song that fits better in a cutesy scene of a romantic comedy, where the insane, awkward, bumbling main character lays eyes on the tall, dark, handsome piece of man candy she loves with her entire heart. As I stare at him, the romantic comedy-esque music speeds up with my rapid heartbeat, and by the end of the song, I feel very much like the idiotic main character that the audience has been laughing at all along for her obliviousness.
Welcome to my life.
Throw in a temper, red hair, and Quidditch – along with a piece of man candy who doubles as the best mate of the main character and doesn’t know that said main character adores him and always has adored him – and you’ve got my very own personal romantic comedy. With emphasis on the comedy, because the romance only seems to lie in my brain. Which might actually be a good thing.
“Don’t you know not to interrupt a testy redhead when they’re quite obviously brooding?” I tease and raise my eyebrows at Logan, reaching for my nearly-empty mug of firewhiskey and lifting it to my already-tainted lips.
I know I’m close to being drunk; I’ve never been a heavyweight when it comes to alcohol, and Logan, who always appears to assist me when I’m moodily sitting at the bar, knows this very well. He knows how to handle my drunken state, especially in its increasing prevalence in my life since my suspension from the team began.
Soon enough, the bloke I love will take my drink away from me, and he won’t allow me to order another. He’ll place a galleon on the bar for my consumption and whisk me back to my flat. Like the good best mate that Logan always has been, he’ll help me into bed and sit next to me until I’m asleep, and he’ll be in my flat when I wake up in the middle of the night sick to my stomach.
I’m lucky that in all the years of our friendship and my tendency to drink when upset, I’ve never spilled my secret to Logan – oh, Merlin, would that be embarrassing. I’m thankfully a quiet enough drunk; I don’t put up much of a fight. I’ll be at the point of sullen, quiet drunkenness by the time I reach the bottom of my mug, I’m sure. Logan won’t have to wait long to take me home.
Much to my surprise, Logan waves at the barmaid, who instantly brings him a mug of firewhiskey and slams it down on the bar in front of him with a warm smile. The woman, a small-chested, pink-cheeked girl with long blonde curls, beams and sticks out her barely-there chest for a little attention from my heartthrob of a best mate. He raises a single eyebrow and turns back to me, holding the full-to-the-brim mug up so that we can toast.
“To Quidditch,” he calls out, a toast most people would find odd. Do normal people also toast to Quidditch, or is it just crazy people like us?
“To Quidditch,” I reply, slamming my mug against his with a little extra force; a splash of firewhiskey flies from the mug and lands on his lap.
Logan laughs at this. “Thanks, Lils.”
I smile at him. “No problem, Wood.”
For a few moments, I simply watch him. He drinks heartily, taking a long gulp of half his mug. He barely flinches as the liquid scorches his throat on the way down. I envy blokes for their ability to chug such a potent alcohol the way they do. I come to this pub every night and drink firewhiskey – more and more with every passing day, hoping it will numb the pain of my miserable Quidditch-less existence – but it still amazes me that there are any people in this world who are able to drink such a vile concoction without even the tiniest flinch or twitch. If I take too much of a sip at once, I’ll spit half of it back out across the bar; I can’t take the fire in such concentration. The barmaids sure do love me.
Such drinking isn’t in his character; he stays sober in order to watch after me. He joins me here at the Leaky Cauldron night after night, but he never drinks. In fact, I haven’t seen him drink since we both made Puddlemere United after our seventh year of Hogwarts finished up. Perhaps that’s why I’ve been suspended from the team and he has not – the alcohol consumption doesn’t really help my temper, I’ll tell you that much.
“Is something the matter, Logan?” I ask him after a few more minutes of watching him.
He shrugs his broad shoulders and shakes back his dark brown curls from his tanned forehead; he’s got the athletic look about him. When you look at him, even for a second, you can tell he plays Quidditch. I love blokes like that – especially Logan. Only Logan.
“Not a very pleasant day, you know?” he answers after a moment of fidgeting.
I think back as to what could have caused a less-than pleasant day for this bloke. I try to keep up with Logan’s life as well as I can; when we’re both playing Quidditch, it isn’t that hard. We’re close. Best mates. I may be in love with him, but I’m his best mate first, and I always keep myself updated in his life. With my suspension, the evil thing that it is, I haven’t seen him without being heavily inebriated beforehand; it ruins the best mate time that we usually have together at practice. I feel terribly behind on the goings-on in his life.
Then, I recall something that I shouldn’t have ever forgotten – today was a match. Against the Appleby Arrows. Oh, Merlin. I forgot all about the match – the first match since I’ve been gone. The first match Puddlemere played without their incredible, temperamental Keeper. Oh, boy.
“What happened?” I probe into his life a little further as only best mates can do. I don’t want to directly mention the match – on the off chance it isn’t what has him drinking – but surely he’ll tell me if that’s what caused his interesting mood.
Logan tips the mug back, taking another long gulp and emptying out his mug. He slams it down on the bar and looks at me with his somber green eyes.
Oh, those eyes. I love those eyes. So passionate, so gorgeous, so attractive; it isn’t hard for me to understand why Logan Wood has so many feminine fans filling the stands at all of our matches, as jealous as that may make me. Those eyes… ah. Mesmerizing.
Sickeningly sweet mental romance, party of one. Kill me now. I just need to shut up and drink more.
“Nothing happened,” he answers.
“You had a match today, Logan,” I remind him.
Okay, I know I said I wasn’t going to bring it up directly, but I have to know. This is the first match since I’ve been suspended. I’m not allowed to watch the matches from the stands at the moment, and I haven’t gotten my hands on a newspaper yet – soon enough, I’ll be too drunk to read an article anyway. No one has run in to the Leaky Cauldron talking about the match, either – something I was counting on to remind me that there was even a match. There’s no way for me to find out the results, and I cannot go another minute without hearing about it – nor do I want another minute to pass with me unknowing of what’s bothering Logan.
“How did it go?”
“Lily, I love you,” he tells me, waving at the barmaid for another drink. When she brings it to him, he looks up at me again, his eyes thoughtful and his jaw set. “We lost, by the way. By a lot.”
“Logan – stop drinking,” I push the mug away from him. Then I pause and stare at him, furrowing my brow. My jaw drops a little as his words hit me with full force. Late reaction. Whoops. “What did you just say to me?”
“I said I love you. And we lost the match. Because you weren’t there. Merlin, I love you, Lily – I wish you were there today. We wouldn’t have lost.”
He doesn’t sound drunk. He hasn’t drank enough firewhiskey yet to be drunk. He isn’t even acting drunk. But… he just told me he loved me. Three times. Logan has never told me he loved me. Whether or not he’s my best mate, he’s never told me that. Never. Just in case it came across as a miscommunication and I took it for something more than what it was… he’s never told me that he loved me. He has to be drunk. He must be drunk.
Logan shakes his head. “No, I’m not.”
“You keep saying you love me.”
He cocks his head to the right. “What is your point, Lils?”
I wrinkle my nose. “I’m confused.”
“Lily, I’m telling you I love you,” he reaches out to put his hand over my own.
My heart speeds up a little faster. “You love me.”
“Yes, I do.”
“Do you mean you love me like, ‘Oh, hey, there’s Lily – I love that girl!’ or do you mean you love me like you love me love me?”
“I love you love you,” Logan responds. He smiles.
I can’t take it that simply. I’m too insane to take it that simply. I bite my lip nervously and lean back in my stool, distancing myself from Logan just by a little bit – all I need is a little space, a little air, a moment to understand and process and comprehend. There’s no way – oh, there’s no way.
“What makes you say that?” I question.
A girl shouldn’t question it. The main character of that romantic comedy I’ve been talking about? She would smile and kiss the bloke like her life depended on it, not babble on or interrogate the bloke. She wouldn’t question it. Not for a single second.
That’s where my life is much more pathetic than a romantic comedy, I suppose.
“That you love me.”
Logan shrugs his shoulders. He doesn’t reach for his mug of firewhiskey – that’s what I would do in such a situation. He tilts his head to the right and takes a deep breath, like this is a monologue he’s been practicing for a very long time.
“You’re my best mate, Lily,” he reminds me – unnecessary information. It’s not like I could forget about that. “I’ve known you since we were eleven, and I think I just realized today how much I love having you around. Our team isn’t anything without you – and neither am I. We need you. I need you. I couldn’t think straight today. We lost, because I couldn’t get my act together. I couldn’t find the Snitch – Merlin, I don’t think I remembered what the Snitch looked like. I’ve been practicing and working my arse off for this match for weeks, but it all boiled down to nothing. You weren’t there.”
Logan reaches out to take my hand again. He squeezes it tightly in his, and I feel odd. Is this what the main character of that romantic comedy feels like in the end scene, when everything is happening at full speed – when she’s finding out that the bloke she loves more than anything in the world loves her too? If it is, I’m never going to laugh at the end of one of those sappy movies ever again. I think I’m going to fall over.
“Maybe it’s stupid, but I think you might be what keeps me from falling apart,” Logan tells me. “I know I’ve been taking care of you for so many years… but… I never realized that you take care of me, too.”
“So what you’re saying is…”
“I’m saying that I love you, Lily Luna Potter.”
“Well… erm… I… I don’t… I lo – ”
Logan puts his fingers over my mouth, interrupting my stammering and stuttering as I try to respond to his declaration of love. “I’ve known you for nine years. I don’t need you to say it back – I already know.”
Then, the climax of the romantic comedy happens to me – the one moment I thought I would never experience in my own awkward life. At least not with Logan, my man candy of choice.
Logan leans in and kisses me.
No rain. No foot pop. No fireworks. No fountains. No singing. No music – at least not out loud. No love letters. No photo montages. Nothing cliché that always seems to pop up in those damn romantic comedies that I think I watch way too much.
It’s just me and Logan. The bloke I love. The bloke that loves me.
My romantic comedy has its happy ending. And it’s not comedic at all.
“Wait, what!? We lost!?” I shriek, almost falling out of my barstool as I jump away from Logan and scare him senseless. “We lost the match!?”
“Lily, you missed that moment like ten minutes ago. Can you just keep kissing me?”
Sorry, my darling audience. I couldn’t help myself. I am insane, remember that? I told you that from the very beginning. Insane people don’t have very good timing. Nor do we comprehend things the moment we hear them. Excuse me for being out of my mind. This wouldn’t be a comedy if I didn’t pull some stupid shit like this, you know?
Cue the lovey-dovey ending scene music and the passionate snogging as the credits roll, eh? You guys can see yourselves out.
I hope you all like it. :)
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