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I went from being the new girl to ninja assassin to master prankster to loose cannon. People were justifiably weary of me now. As for the debacle with James; no one seemed ready to broach the subject. No one normal that is.

“It was unfair,” Fitz said for the hundredth time that week. We were sitting in the stands in the Quidditch pitch despite the cold. It was the only place people would stop trying to listen in on our conversations, glare at me, attempt to hex me… or claw at me with their scary manicured nails, but I considered that to be in the same category as being hexed. It was starting to get to me but I wasn’t about to admit that.

“He started it.”

“That would’ve been justifiable before you went and accused him of, well, everything.”

“But he is a stupid, entitled-“

“If you start one more time, I’m going to sell you to a troll.”

Somehow the other houses had heard about it by the next morning. I hadn’t expected it and had to deal with everyone whispering through breakfast. You’d think it would have blown over a week later, but here we were; sitting out in the cold trying to avoid everyone. Fitz was the only person who seemed to know that I wasn’t going to freak out at him and I felt horrible that he’d been dragged into this. The most surprising thing was that no one went to a teacher. This made me feel even guiltier because it proved just how bad what I’d done to Jillian was. Sure, she was a right bint, but her boils had taken three days to fully heal.

“I didn’t mean to,” I groaned and let my head fall into my hands.

“She looked like she got attacked by The Hulk,” he said knowledgeably.

“Thanks.”

“No problem.”

“Tracey and Rebecca won’t look at me. They charmed their curtains to stick together.”

“That’s stupid. You could just burn them down before you murdered them-“

I groaned and he shut up.

“It’s not like they didn’t do anything to me. I mean, Potter started the whole ‘let’s steal Marley’s stuff’ trend and Jillian followed. How am I the bad guy here?”

“You dyed his hair pink and insulted him-“

“But it’s true,” I almost yelled. “All the stuff I said-“

“Ahh, but this is Hogwarts and no one actually gives a kneazle’s arse.”

 “I want to go home,” I said miserably, leaning back and looking up at the cast over sky. Even the weather seemed to not want to cooperate with me. It was gross and cold.

“I would too if I were you,” Fitz said, leaning back at well.

“But if I did, you’d be left alone to fend for yourself.”

“I wouldn’t be that insane bird who hexes people into next week. So it wouldn’t be that bad.”

“Good point.”

“I try.”

I would’ve rather been in the warm Common Room with its roaring fire and cozy red sofas. But every time I walked into a room with actual people, everyone would stop talking and stare at me. And if either Jillian or, Merlin forbid, James was in the room the stares would be death glares. So I’d been spending most of my days on the grounds in the cold and for whatever reason Fitz decided to join me. He was really a better person than anyone gave him credit for.

Jillian was constantly surrounded by a group of girls who would glare daggers at me every time I walked by her; like I  was the one who’d gone through someone’s personal stuff and called their mother a tramp. But I assumed that her minions were all a part of James’s stupid fan club, so I didn’t take them seriously seeing as they probably had a collective IQ less than the length of my wand in inches. In our dorm, she always had something mean to say and thus far I’d managed to ignore her because I felt bad about the scratches the boils had left on her face.

James himself hadn’t looked at me in a week and was pretending like I had some highly dangerous, easily contractible disease. The one time he communicated with me was during Potions when I was blocking the supply closet. He’d cleared his throat loudly and stood there with his arms cross, looking away while he waited for me to move.

“Do you want to go do that essay about Inferi?” I asked. Talking about something else might do both of us some good.

“Already did it.”

“When? Professor Lupin assigned it to us just before lunch.”

“Did it between Arithmancy and Charms,” he shrugged. He didn’t realize I was gaping at him.

“Are you some kind of genius?” I demanded.

“Maybe. Although Mum said I’m crazy. But that could be because I’d just blown up the backyard and she didn’t take kindly to her gnome collection going up in smoke-“

“What are you doing here?”

I wanted to groan out loud but I no longer had the energy to deal with Jillian and her stupidity. Instead I looked at Fitz and he nodded, reading my mind and getting up. We both ignored the group of girls (who all looked weirdly similar with their dark shiny hair and long nails) and walked towards the exit.

“I asked you a question,” Jillian said huffily.

“Congratulations,” I rolled my eyes.

“Ugh. Stop being so stupid,” another one of the girls said.

“When you stop being a hypocrite,” I couldn’t stop myself from retorting. They all blinked at me.

“Come one,” Fitz muttered, pulling at my sleeve.

“Yeah,” Jillian put in. “Listen to the freak. For once he’s making some sense.”

She’d never said anything about Fitz before. As long as her comments were directed at me, I could deal, but Fitz was only in this because of me and Merlin be damned if I let her walk all over him.

I turned around and made a show of pulling my wand out of my pocket. I didn’t actually intend to hex them; just scare them a bit so maybe they’d shut up for a few days. Fitz seemed to realize this and he sighed.

“I’m going to the library,” he said tiredly. “You can find me later.”

And then he turned and walked away. I didn’t blame him; I was starting to get tired of my crap too.

“Don’t bring Fitz into this,” I said directly to Jillian. All of them were eyeing my wand wearily as I took a step towards them. Jillian seemed to make a decision because she pulled out her own wand and stepped forward. I had to fight a smirk from forming on my lips.

“Looks like your little boyfriend is too much of a loser to stand up for himself,” she spat at me.

“No, he’s just been in this place long enough to be impervious to git-like behavior,” I shrugged.

“You’re a stupid slut,” she snapped.

“Do you even know what that word means, Jillian?” I sighed.

“Yeah. And I also know you want James. You can’t have him!”

I stared at her in wonder.

“And you think I’m crazy,” I snorted. I was going to turn to leave when she raised her wand.

It was a reflex, honest to Merlin. I didn’t intend to get into a duel with her, really. But I sprung away from her hex just as my Body-Binding Curse hit her and all her minions started screaming like I’d Avada’d her or something.

“Oh my God, Jill!”

“Are you okay?”

“You killed her!”

“Ooooh, you’re going to Azkaban.”

“Talk to me! Say something!”

I groaned and sat heavily down on one of the chairs. A dull hammering pain was beginning to pound at my temples. I’d just gotten myself into a deeper pit than I was in about ten minutes ago. No doubt people would be hearing how I was Voldemort reincarnated before the day was out. The stupid minions (whose shrieks were ringing across the pitch, in case you were wondering) would no doubt make this out to be something that it wasn’t.

I stared up at the sky, wondering if I should jump from the stands just so I wouldn’t have to hear those stupid twits screeching anymore.

I let my head fall into my hands in a vain attempt to stop the throbbing.

“You’re such a freak! Stop stalking James,” one of the idiots said. I grunted.

We always come to watch practice. You have no right to be here.”

“James doesn’t need you to be here. Stop trying to get his attention!”

“Merlin, just Avada me. I promise I won’t bother you in the afterlife,” I muttered to myself.

“Oh my God, you’re so weird.”

“I knew she was crazy.”

My head felt like it was going to explode. I got up and out of the corner of my eye I saw all the minions quickly step back.

“Stay away from practices,” one of the brave ones said. That wouldn’t be a problem. Unfortunately the stands were the only place where I thought they’d leave me alone. Obviously I’d been terribly wrong but I wasn’t in any mindset to explain that to them.

“Yeah, James doesn’t need you hanging around.”

“You’ll jinx the team.”

“Don’t come to the matches either.”

“Just stay away-“

I wanted to say that that wouldn’t be a problem; that I had no interest in James or his matches. What actually happened was that I yelled, “I FREAKING HATE QUIDDITCH” at them. They all took another step back and I would’ve felt a little bad if I wasn’t shaking so bad.

“Shut up,” I sighed finally. “Please, just shut up.”

They all burst out shrieking at me again and I thought I would maybe combust.

“What is going on here?!”

All the minions whipped around. Fred was standing there in his Quidditch robes with his Beater’s bat in one hand. He was panting and it looked like he’d run all the way up to the stands. He took in the scene; Jillian lying motionless on the floor and me standing there, probably looking ready to murder someone. Somehow this seemed to relieve him.

Stupid git.

“We thought someone had died with all the screaming,” he chuckled. I wanted to wrestle the bat from him and club him over the head with it.

“She cursed Jill!” one of the girls shrieked, pointing an accusing finger at me. “We don’t know what’s wrong with her!”

Fred looked at me and I think he realized that I was five seconds away from going demented troll on everyone.

“She’ll be fine. Just let me go get my wand,” he said calmly, eyeing me cautiously.

“She’s crazy!”

“She attacked us!”

“Where’s James?

“Someone should do something about her.”

I jammed my wand in my pocket, turned around and began stalking towards the exit on the other side of the stands.

“Marley!” I heard Fred call, but I ignored him. I heard him running after me. He finally reached me when I reached the stairs and grabbed my wrist to stop me. When I turned around I saw the minions over his shoulder looking at me with nothing short of hatred.

“Don’t listen to them,” he said. His voice was deep and soothing and I looked at him. His eyes were kind and brown and the corners crinkled a little when he smiled. The gesture was nice and I knew he meant well, but he felt bad for me. His pity was not something I was willing to accept.

So, I pulled my hand out of his grasp and stepped back.

“It feels like I’m in the loony ward at Mungo’s,” I told him.

“It’s a bit like that, yeah,” he chuckled.

“Right,” I didn’t know what else to say. Fred was going to say something when there was suddenly a lot of twittering at the other end of the stands. We both turned to see that everyone had forgotten about Jillian’s unmoving body and were clustered around James Potter. Quin was behind him with another guy I’d seen around the Common Room and all three of them were in Quidditch robes like Fred. I caught words like ‘crazy’, ‘unstable’ and ‘attack’.  Someone decided to use a counter curse on Jillian and she immediately sprang up and latched herself onto James, panting like a complete twit and behaving as though she’d just been attacked by a Death Eater.

When I finally looked at him, he was already watching me with that annoying blank look on his face. He seemed oblivious to the fact that at least three people were trying to grope him and the others were twittering about saying things to him. I decided that he was probably deliberating whether to come yell at me or not and I certainly didn’t need everyone to think I attacked both Jillian and James in the same day. So, I turned to Fred.

“I’m going to go,” I said to him. He looked at me for a long moment before he spoke.

“Hang on, I’ll walk you. I’ll just tell James that-“

“It’s fine. I was going to meet Fitz in the library anyway,” I shrugged, shooting him a smile. “Maybe attempt to save him before he suffocates…?”

I jabbed my thumb in James’s direction and Fred snorted.

“I’ll see you later. Sorry about ruining your practice,” I said. Then I turned around and walked away.




Fitz and I spent the majority of the weekend in the library. This worked well for us both, seeing as it was warm inside and the few people who actually went to the library were more or less sane and seemed to realize that I wasn’t going to bludgeon them and their immediate family.

“Is everyone going to just be like this forever?” I asked him over lunch. We’d taken to eating in there as well; sneaking food from the kitchens and setting up camp in the back aisles worked the best since the ancient librarian didn’t venture past the first two rows of books.

“Nah,” came his reply from behind The Daily Prophet. “It’ll blow over. Like that time Reggie Hopkins came running into the Great Hall stark naked on a dare. Everyone forgot the next week when Fanny Hays and Dalton West hooked up.”

“Good,” I sighed.

“But then again, you’re the new girl and I’m fairly sure the Ravenclaw Captain wants to get with you so maybe not.”

I stared at him, wondering if I should ask him how he knew these things. In the end I decided to just ignore him and moodily take a bite of my liquorice wand. Fitz was frowning at his paper with so much concentration you’d think it was educating him about the reason Voldemort didn’t have a nose. I rolled my eyes; leave it to Fitz to be fascinated by tax hikes or whatever.

“Hey!”

I had to turn around to see who it was, but I saw Fitz freeze at the sound of the voice. I don’t know if it was cute or a little sad that he could place Dom’s voice.

“Hey Dom!” I said brightly as she took a seat next to me.

“Hey, Marley, Fitz,” she nodded. Fitz choked on his own saliva. Dom looked at him a little worriedly.

“Oh, don’t worry about him… bad ham,” I said lightly.

“Right. Erm… well, anyway, I just came to say hi,” she smiled.

“Aren’t you fraternizing with the enemy?” I asked, eyebrow raised. Dom only rolled her eyes.

“You sound just like James and it’s a little unnerving,” she said, shaking her head. “And erm… well, I actually came to see if erm… if you could maybe do me a favor…”

She trailed off, biting her lip and staring at the table uncomfortably. Fitz was being suspiciously quite next to me and I looked at him just to make sure he hadn’t forgotten to breathe. He was staring at her with his mouth open, so I had to smack him upside the head. Dom heard and turned to stare at us.

“Oh uh… that bacon. It makes his brain a bit foggy sometimes,” I chuckled.

“I thought it was ham.”

“Yeah, that too. It was ham… and bacon. He likes to eat them with erm… cereal. Anyway, what were you going to say?’ I switched topics. This seemed to do the trick because Dom’s face turned slightly red and she began chewing her lip again. Fitz let out a sigh.

“Well, uh… there’s this party coming up soon and I wanted to see if you guys wanted to go,” she said, fidgeting a little with her bag.

Fitz was making raspy noises now, and I would have done something if it hadn’t been for the blatant fact that Dom felt sorry for me.

Today was turning out to be extra sucky.

“I don’t think that’s the best idea,” I said, looking away from her. She must have caught on to what I was thinking because she was quick to explain herself.

“It’s just… my boyfriend’s best friend just broke up with his girlfriend and, um… I mean, it’ll be great if he had someone to hang out with him,” she said hastily.

Oh, so that’s what she wanted.

“You mean someone to hang out with him while you and your boyfriend go off and do… well, I don’t want to think about that,” I pondered. I knew I was right when Dom’s face turned a lovely shade of red.

“I mean… you’re really funny and all… Roger thinks so too. He thought it was really funny when you dyed James’s hair pink,” she tried to divert conversation.

“So… why’re you asking me, then?”

“You know, just… thought it would be fun,” she said vaguely. I patiently stared at her as she turned even more red than she already was.

“Oh, fine! It’s just that Roger thinks all my friends are weird and I can’t ask my cousins go because it’ll get back to James, Al and Fred and then they’ll go batshit that I’m dating someone.”

Then she adorably hid her head in her hands.

I looked at Fitz and he looked like someone had punched him in the gut. I found his hand under the table and squeezed it comfortingly.

“Sure,” I shrugged.  Dom peeked at my through her fingers.

“Yeah?” she said hopefully.

“Yeah,” I shrugged. “Right, Fitz?”

Fitz gaped at me, and I prayed that some stroke of brilliance would strike him and he’s said something.

 “Anha fichat shafka,” he said directly at Dom.

Oh, dear Merlin.

“What?” Dom looked scandalized. Fitz opened and closed his mouth like a fish, and Dom just looked highly offended. He then turned to me with a pleading expression on his face.

“The sausage really did-“

“Ham,” Fitz grunted.

“Ham. The ham really messed with his noggin. He’s been saying weird stuff all day,” I said reassuringly. “Don’t mind him.”

Dom just stared at us with her mouth hanging open. I had a big fake smile on my face and Fitz, poor Fitz; he began to choke again.

“He’ll come too,” I put in for him. “It’ll be fun!”

“I uh… I’ll tell Leroy to put both your names on the list,” Dom finally said. “And thanks, Marley. Really, it’ll be nice to go somewhere with Roger finally. We’re sneaking about most of the time.”

Her thankful smile was worth it. I nodded as she got up (not risking saying bye to Fitz) and hurried away. I liked Dom. Fitz was right; she really was sweet. That, and I’d do anything that involved hoodwinking James.

Fitz began gasping for air once Dom was out of sight.

“Are you having a panic attack?” I asked uncertainly. Fitz responded by trying to gulp air down like water. I freaked out and started shaking him violently by the shoulder.

“Ness,” he choked. “Ness, stop.”

I did and sat back, looking at him uncertainly. He did seem calmer though. We sat in silence for a bit until Fitz finally broke it.

“Did I just speak to Dominique Weasley in Dothraki?”

“I don’t know what that is, but yes; I think you did.”

Fitz groaned and slumped in his seat, covering his face with the newspaper he had been reading.

“Why did you do that?” he whined.

“Uh… so that you can actually talk to her and she’ll see you’re awesome. You’re welcome, by the way.”

“How am I supposed to talk to her if all I can manage to do around her is impersonate a troll?” he mumbled.

“We’ll figure it out,” I said reassuringly, patting the newspaper. That’s when I caught sight of the picture on the page.

Charles?”

“No, I’m Fitz,” he said into the paper. But I wasn’t listening. I seized it off his face and began reading.

It only mentioned ‘an attack on the house of a Ministry official’. For a sick moment I thought someone had attacked my father. I read through it again and found the name ‘Terence Higgs’ at the bottom of the article.

What was Charles playing at?

I mean, sure, I didn’t know exactly what he was doing with the Ministry. I never asked because at home he was always just buried in paperwork, and I just always assumed that his job was boring and consisted of filling out forms.

Okay ,that isn’t true. I knew he used to be a Hit Wizard. But he’s retired to a desk job ages ago and now… this.

I won’t lie; I started panicking a bit.

“Ness, you okay?” Fitz was looking at me curiously.

For the first time, I really thought about how tired he’d started looking once we’d moved. He was spending late nights out and I guess I always just thought that he was at the Ministry.

Obviously I was wrong, and I felt like a complete idiot for not bothering to ask him about his job.

You know, since he now seemed to think he was some kind of James Bond equivalent and all.

My eyes scanned the picture again. The focus was on a house in the foreground. There were people standing in groups everywhere. I watched as the Charles in the picture talked to a group of younger looking men. All of them had their wands out.

 “Yeah,” I said finally, looking back at the newspaper and deliberating. Maybe this Terence Higgs person was someone important.

“I’ve to go write a letter,” I said to Fitz, getting up and tossing the paper back at him.

“Okay,” I heard him call as I walked away. “I’ll just be… here.”

Under normal circumstance, I really wouldn’t have cared; Charles’s job never did interest me all that much. But if he was running around and getting himself involved in attacks and such, and being secretive about it, I needed to know that he was okay. After all, this was the man who allowed a six year old to run around yielding a pestle.

He also happened to be the only person I had left, and Merlin help me if I let anything change that.




A/N: The Hulk is from the amazing Marvel Comics and created by Stan Lee.

I am SO sorry it's been so long! I have end semster exams and I've basically been zombie-like for the past couple of weeks and I had absolutely NO time to edit this. But I've done it somehow ... And it probably isn't very good editing either so I'm just going to go ahead a say sorry for that.

Anyway, what d'ya think? Fav part? Is Fitz adorable or what? What's up with Charles? Who wants to sock James/Jillian/The Minions upside the head?

Leave a comment and I'll be a happy unicorn! :)

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