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Chapter Eight: Yuletide Yielding’s

A holiday is when you celebrate something that's all finished up, that happened a long time ago and now there's nothing left to celebrate but the dead.
-Abraham Polonsky


“—and after we got out of the carriages, he walked me to the Ravenclaw rooms,” I sighed for the fifth time this hour. “And now, here I am.”

Mar let out a squeak. “You didn’t kiss him? Not even a hug?”

“I was this close to shaking his hand, but I figured it was too soon for that,” I rolled my eyes and fell back into my pillow. “Sleep; now.”

I closed my eyes as she stood from her bed to go to the toilet; however, I was asleep before she came back.

Through the halls, few people walked by and the portraits slept. I crept slowly along the walls, as anyone patrolling could catch me. Slowly, I got closer to the dungeons.

“Oof,” I was pulled into a broom closet, and against a warm body. “Subtle enough?”

“Not quite,” I pulled away and turned to look at him. “But, this is nice.”

He laughed, “One day it will be much nicer, that I promise.”

I grinned and wrapped my arms around his neck. Leaning in, our lips met in—

The floor next to my bed was cold and hard when my face hit it that morning.

“Lynn, get up—and stop mumbling in your sleep, will you?” Mar threw a pillow at me. “Today’s my last day in the castle this year, and I’d prefer it if it wasn’t spent fantasizing about you boyfriend.”

“He’s not my boyfriend,” I grumbled and sat up. My head swirled and I grabbed it in the hope that the pain would stop. Such a wonderful, peaceful dream.

Mar grabbed my hands and pulled me up, “Come on, you didn’t fall that hard—and I gave you enough time, that I’m done packing.”

I looked around her side of the room, empty, except for the sheets on the bed. Her trunk at the door was ready for the house-elves to bring down, and the room was already feeling lonesome. Well, I guess I should prepare for another two weeks of books, information, and lack of human contact.
On the walk down, I stayed slightly behind Andrew and Mar as they whispered to each other; being a third wheel didn’t occur to me until this moment.

“Well, I’ll miss you guys,” I said as I came to a stop out side Hogwarts. “Enjoy vacation.”

“Oh, Lynnie, I’ll miss you too,” Mar tossed her arms around me and her grin spread to me. “And Andrew will too.”

He rolled his eyes, “Yes, of course I will, Lynn. But, if you two will excuse me, I have to talk to Thomas.”

“See you on the express!”

Mar watched him go and smiled. She then turned to me, “Now, I want you to be careful, okay? I know, I know—”She continued as I gave a look of confusion. “You believe he’s a good guy, which is great, I trust your judgment and all—but, for the love of Rowena, be careful. Time are getting so dark, you’ve read the Prophet, people are dying, Lynn.”

“I am aware, trust me,” I rolled my eyes. “Just do me a favor, okay? Don’t worry about me.” I smiled and gave her a hug. “I’ll be fine. Nothing can get past Hogwarts.”

The next day, I admit it was nice to wake up and not have anything to do or anyone to see. Being one of two Ravenclaws that stayed at the castle brought a silence that I rarely had—of course, I may as well have been the only Ravenclaw as the seventh year spent the entire break with her Gryffindor boyfriend. I however spent most of my time in the library, writing a Charms essay due after break and reading up on new and useful spells.

Until about the sixth day when I went out for a walk around the grounds. The snow had fallen, and armed with heating charms I braved the cold. A group of boys had been throwing snow near the lake, and I tried to not make eye contact when I saw the green on their robes.

Of course, when a clump of snow hit me on the back, I faced them with anger in my eyes. They’re Slytherins—oh, like that matters—get your wand. Pulling my wand from my pocket, three of them came up to me.

“Sorry about that,” The blonde leered. “Do you need some hel—”

“Cut it out,” Regulus. “You alright, Lynnette?”

My eyes wouldn’t come out of their glare until he put his hand on my shoulder to wipe off some of the snow. “I’m fine. Thanks.”

The third was about to say something, but Regulus turned with a glare. “Um, yeah, sorry about that.”

I gave a quick smile and turned to walk away; the two ran back to the group, but Regulus stayed. “Lynn—how’s break going?”

I looked down at his hand on my arm and he quickly pulled it back, “I’m fine, been in the library writing that essay for Charms.”

“Yeah, I’ve been postponing that. Been caught up with a lot of stuff,” He ran a hand through his hair. What kind of stuff?

I must’ve had a questioning look on my face, for he responded. “Just…family…stuff. My cousin is getting married soon, and my mum’s been talking. Annoying, the lot of it.”

“I’d bet,” I nodded. “All my mother ever talks about is…well. Nothing, really. My father is always out, and she only talks to him.”

It had been going on for most of my life; I doubt it to be strange. I’ve asked what goes on in her life, but she just brushes it off with ‘why don’t you put on a dress, those pants aren’t for a lady of your age.’ Father, on the other hand, seems to enjoy talking with me (no at me, like mum does), though he never gets the chance with being out all the time. Social influence is key, Lynn, and as I am out, I bring the family name to others—as I build this family, you will have nothing to worry about in your young life: typical pureblood father, so I’m told.

“I often wish that’s how is was in my house,” He shook his head. “Ever since…Sirius…left, she’s been ranting and yelling in the hopes that someone will listen. Only the house elves do, unfortunately.”

Everyone knows about the older Black’s defamation, as he flew to the Potter’s over break to get out of a dark household. The way Regulus talks about it, it seems average. Of course, those Gryffindors always need to break free of something.

“I should be heading in,” I looked up to the castle, almost time for supper. Warmth covered my hand and I glanced down to see his pale skin encircling mine.

“Would you like to sit at the Slytherin table? Dumbledore doesn’t mind, since so few are here during these times,” His skin is so warm and nice. “Lynn?”

“Oh,” I blinked and looked into his smirking eyes. “I’d love to.”

And with that, we walked up the steps and in to the Great Hall; empty, except for a few teachers, I followed Regulus to a side of the castle I had not seen before. The table and benches were the same, though they looked darker and held a different feeling than those of the Ravenclaw table. As I sat down to his right, the goblet in front of me filled with water.

“Different,” I nodded at the view from this side of the Hall.

He let out a laugh, “You get used to it.”

“Good evening,” said a voice; I looked up into the blue eyes of the Headmaster. “Did you enjoy the snow, Mr. Black?”

“I did, Professor,” Regulus held an elegant air even around the wonderful Dumbledore.

“And you, Ms. Grey?” His eyes seemed to twinkle.

I smiled, “It wasn’t as pleasant as I’d hoped, but everything worked out for the best.”

His smile grew, “Lovely, I was just telling Minerva that she should take a walk in the snow, but she prefers to stay inside. An interesting thing, a Gryffindor that prefers to not explore the outside world, don’t you think?”

“She probably prefers observing the castle, as it holds far more secrets,” I replied.

The Headmaster nodded, “Quite true indeed, Ms. Grey. I must be off, do enjoy your meals.”

Regulus and I nodded our goodbyes and I picked up my goblet. As I took a sip, he turned to me. “That was an impressively held conversation, Grey.”

“Why the sudden switch to surnames, Black?” I retorted.

“The Daily Prophet stated this morning that there is only Black and White with what is currently brewing, however,” He nodded in my direction. “I believe there is always a gray area.”

I gave him a curious glance as the group from the snow came to join us. Their loudness overwhelmed my next words, but I believe he heard them from the grin that grew.

“I concur.”

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