Despite fighting for only a day, Albus was delighted to reunite with David, Rose, and Art. He felt that, despite everything, despite the conflicts and secrets, they were stronger than they were before. The day after they all apologized, Albus, Art, and David approached Professor Longbottom and explained how Rose had covered up for them. Rose got off detention, and Albus and David each got a week of detention for dueling. Art only lost ten points for the crater, because to quote Professor Longbottom, “It was an accident.” Albus had never been more relieved to have such a laid-back Head of House. The week of detention went by pretty quickly.

And it was a good thing too, because Halloween was approaching and they needed all the time they could get to make their dragon costumes. The four of them ordered fake dragon hide through owl order, and then they set their preparations of creating their masks. They borrowed a view spikes from James for the Hungarian horntail (Albus didn’t even want to know why James had spikes) and the rest of the head was to be created from the fake dragon hide. But they had plenty of preparations to make in the meantime. David had an idea that they could somewhere make them breathe fire.

“It would be so cool to breathe fire on people!” David said excitedly one evening.

“There’s got to be some spell that would allow us to breathe fire! And I don’t care if that means we have to research it in the library, we just have to do it! Please?” David put on a really cute looking puppy face as he faced Rose. Albus chuckled at Rose’s bewildered expression.

“You actually want to go to the library? Well, I suppose we could,” Rose said. So they all started, once again, to do research. But it didn’t even take an hour: apparently a common spell was already in use to make various creatures and humans breathe fire. Luckily there was a counter-charm too, usually used on dragons so they didn’t burn you.

“This is a fourth-year level charm,” David said worriedly.

“I’ll try it, and if none of us can do it we can ask some older student,” Rose said. She pointed her wand in the direction of her mouth. “Incendio efflo!” Rose shouted. A few sparks flew into her mouth, causing her to shriek.

“Are you okay?” Albus asked. She nodded, even though her eyes were watering slightly. Albus reflected that this spell was a lot like the fire charm. He’d had trouble with it when he first learned it, but once he started using nonverbal magic, he’d done the spell perfectly.

Albus turned his back to his friends, curious to see of this would work. He took a deep breath, and thought “Incendio efflo!”, thinking of his mouth exhaling flame. Surprisingly, when Albus exhaled a burst of flame flew out, the edges nearly licking the nearest bookshelf. “I did it!” Albus shouted, exhaling more flame.

“I didn’t hear you say anything,” Art said, sounding confused.

“Oh, I whispered the words pretty softly,” Albus said, lying. Art still looked a bit skeptical.

“Can you do it to the rest of us?” David asked.

“Sure,” Albus said, casting the spell on Art, David, and Rose. He made sure to mouth the words this time, so he could pretend he was just whispering.

“This is so cool!” David exclaimed, exhaling a really long trail of fire.

“Don’t burn us!” Albus said, alarmed.

“You know I wouldn’t,” David said. They all laughed together for several minutes as they breathed fire into the air.

“I wish I could to do something like those smoke rings Gandalf did in the Lord of the Rings,” Art said.

“What?” Albus said.

“Oh, never mind, it’s a muggle thing,” Art said, and left it at that.

“WHAT ARE YOU DOING!” Madam Pince screamed once she walked around the corner and saw the four of them. “ARE YOU SERIOUSLY AS STUPID AS TO BREATHE FIRE ON FLAMMABLE BOOKS! HOW DARE YOU!” Madam Pince yanked the book of different dragon charms from Albus’s hands. “I’VE HAD ENOUGH OF THE FOUR OF YOU! YOU’RE BANNED FROM THE LIBRARY FOREVER!” The four of them ran before Madam Pince could do something horrendous to them. They arrived outside the Gryffindor Common room, panting.

“Don’t breathe fire on me, you fools!” The Fat Lady said, shrieking as fire brushed the edge of her portrait. “I’m not letting you in!”

“But the password is treacle tart!” Albus said, exasperated.

“Oh, alright,” the Fat Lady said grumpily, and she swung open.

“Madam Pince took the book with the counter-charm! Are we going to be like this forever?” Rose asked.

“We just need to ask one of our cousins to perform it,” Albus said. “Are any of them here?”

“There’s Dominique, sitting on the biggest, plushiest chair,” Art noted.

“I don’t know if we should ask Dominique,” Rose said. “She’s kind of a brat and extremely selfish.”

“Let’s ask her anyway,” Albus said. He cautiously approached her. She was busy reading a book on human transfiguration. “Er, Dominque?”

“What?” Dominique said crabbily, as she looked up from her book. “And don’t breathe fire on me.”

“Yeah, that’s why we’re here. We just got banned from the library, and we need the counter-charm to stop breathing fire. Can you help us?”

“It’s your own damned fault that you got banned from the library. And don’t bother me with something stupid again,” Dominique said, turning her head back to her book. Albus stood frozen for a moment, feeling as though he had just been slapped in the face, and walked away. How could she be practically the polar opposite of Victoire? He wished she hadn’t graduated last year, since she would have been a big help.

“Who else can we ask?” Albus asked desperately.

“Well, Molly and Lucy wouldn’t approve us of getting banned from the library,” Rose said. “I suppose our next option is Louis and Fred, though I don’t think Madam Pince exactly likes them either…” Rose said. As soon as she said that, almost one cue, Fred and Louis walked into the common room from their dormitory, laughing.

“Fred! Louis!” Albus yelled. As they walked over, admiring the flames coming from their direction, Albus quickly explained the situation.

“Sorry, Madam Pince banned the two of us from the library as well, since we set up a prank in there once,” Louis said.

“You mean you did. I had nothing to do with it,” Fred interjected.

“Yeah, but Madam Pince banned both us for the sake of it. Point is, we can’t help you. Sorry,” Louis said.

“What about Roxanne?” Rose said.

“She dueled Vincent Rosier in there once, so Madam Pince banned her too. They destroyed half the library; it was a pretty epic fight actually,” Fred said. “Sorry guys. And good luck.”

Once Albus said goodbye, he turned to Rose and desperately said, “Do you think James is banned too?”

“Probably, but we can try him,” Rose said. “Come on, let’s go to the third year dormitories.” They climbed the spiraling stairs, and luckily James was sitting there with his friend John.

“Woah, are you breathing fire?” James said, sounding impressed.

“That is so epic,” John said.

“Yeah, but we can’t stop breathing fire,” Albus said, and explained the situation once more.

“Well, I’m banned from the library, but John isn’t.”

“What’s the title of the book again?” John asked.

“Dragon Charms,” Rose said. “Simple enough.”

“Alright, I’ll get it. You four, stay here.”

“Thanks John,” Albus said.

“Who’s he?” David whispered.

“John Shafiq. James’s best friend,” Albus explained. They stood there awkwardly for a few minutes, as James was stretched out on a bed completely ignoring them.

“Hey, Albus can you go get me some food from the kitchens?” James asked. Albus opened his mouth to complain, but realized that James and John were doing him a big favor, so Albus turned around to go out the dormitory. As he walked out, Albus was suddenly soaked, head to toe, in ice cold water.

“JAMES!” Albus yelled, as James laughed loudly. “What was that for?”

“Nothing at all,” James said, still laughing. “Except for my own enjoyment at your horrified expression.”

“It does look pretty funny,” David said, beginning to laugh, but stopping when Albus glared at him.

“But John just walked through that, and he didn’t get wet. How did you do it?” Rose asked, her curiosity leaking through.

“Everything was already set up, I just needed to say a spell to activate it, and I whispered it as Albus walked underneath. I was actually planning to do it on Blake later today, but I can’t lose a missed opportunity.

“So I presume you don’t need food from the kitchens?” Albus said, shivering.

“Well, it would be nice…”

“Not in your wildest dreams,” Albus said, and James chuckled. Albus was about to say a retort, but John walked in brandishing the book.

“Got it!” John said. “I can’t do the spell, but here’s the book,” John said. He handed the book to a shaking Albus. “Oh, you did it to him, James? Nice job!”

“Thanks mate,” James said, as they gave each other a high five. Albus scowled at them, despite holding the book that they had helped him get.

“I’m going to try the spell,” Rose said quickly, grabbing the book. She probably felt a little jealous, since Albus had actually done a spell she couldn’t, for once.

Rose tried the spell a few times, and on the third try, the fire was finally extinguished.”Third time’s the charm,” she said happily, as she performed the counter spell on all of them.

“When’s the dragon hide coming in?” Albus asked.

“4-5 business days,” Rose replied.

“You’re buying dragon hide? How much money do you have!?” James shouted, looking at them in awe.

“Don’t be silly, it’s fake dragon hide,” Rose said.

“Rose, you just ruined a great opportunity,” Albus said.

“I have better friends,” James said, grinning.

“Shut up.”

 

Halloween was a blast. The four of them entered as the four Triwizard dragons, breathing fire on everything. However, they were nowhere near the greatest costumes, as a lot of the seventh years transfigured parts of themselves. Human Transfiguration wouldn’t come until their sixth and seventh year, so everyone younger than that had to make do. It was still pretty fun. They ended up taking the breathing fire charm off during the feast, since it was hard to eat something when you kept accidentally scorching it.

The next Quidditch match was only a few weeks into November. Ravenclaw, Hufflepuff, and Slytherin already had a few Quidditch matches, but this was going to be the first one for Gryffindor. The game was Gryffindor vs. Ravenclaw. Luckily, Albus didn’t have to play, since none of the players got injured. Louis and Fred were commentating again this year. Everyone seemed to love their commentary.

“I’m surprised they haven’t been banned yet,” Rose said on the matter. The teachers probably didn’t ban them because half of the school would be in uproar if they did.

“And here comes those really awesome amazing Gryffindors that should totally win except I’m not being biased!” Louis yelled over the megaphone as the Gryffindor team flew out onto the Quidditch pitch. “We have Captain Chris Van Malden as chaser, as well as James Potter and Caroline Mitt! Then we have our two superb beaters, Roxanne Weasley and Brad Romo! Then keeper Matthew Peakes and seeker Olivia Renehan!”

“Seeming how Roxanne gets so many detentions for picking fights, I’m impressed she’s still on the team, and hasn’t been banned,” Fred said. “Oh well, but it’s my duty as an older brother to tell her how many howlers mum sent her this year. I think it was seventeen, if I counted correctly. And if I embarrass her long enough, it’ll probably become eighteen. We send you our love Roxanne!” Albus could see Roxanne shouting something, but he couldn’t tell what it was since she was too far away. It was probably good he couldn’t hear, since it probably wasn’t anything pleasant.

“And here comes the claws!” Fred shouted. “This year they’re made up of a lot of girls, a total of five on the team! Wow! That might even be a Hogwarts record or something. And they’re hot too. Louis, what is your opinion of their hotness?”

“I dunno Fred, I kind of like Gryffindor girls better,” Louis said.

“Oh, well, I know you have a crush on a certain Gryffindor girl,” Fred said teasingly.

“Fred, the entire school didn’t need to know that,” Louis said.

“And her name-”

“FRED! SHUT UP!” Louis yelled. Albus was laughing really hard. This was great. “Besides we’re supposed to calling the Ravenclaw people. So, the chasers are Arwen Mullen, Vixen Burrow, and Grant Davies. The keeper is Carina Davies, and their seeker is Charity Tao. Finally, their two beaters are Haley McLaggen and Doris Tinker.”

“That’s five hot girls,” Fred said. “I personally think Carina Davies is kind of cute-oh look, now she’s glaring at me, that’s always a good sign.”

“Fred, that means she doesn’t want people to talk about how cute she is in front of like, every student in the school,” Louis said.

“Well, I’ll find her later, and see if she’s any nicer,” Fred said. “Anyhow, Madam Hooch is now blowing the whistle, and the game begins! Hooray! Davies grabs the ball- that’s Grant Davies, not super hot Carina Davies- and passes it to Mullen, who passes it to Burrow, who passes it back to Davies, who passes it back to Mullen, back to Burrow, then back to Davies- really, can you be any more predictable? Oh, is she trying to get the quaffle into the left goal? That spices things up a bit. She throws- and Peakes saves it! Yes!”

“Let’s hope the Gryffindors keep this up,” Louis said. “The statistics are currently on their side. They were all on the team last year, so they didn’t have to train any newbies, while Ravenclaw gained three new players. However, next year three players from the Gryffindor team are leaving, while only two from Ravenclaw. So next year may be a different story. Who do you think will fill up those empty slots for the Gryffindors? They will need two chasers and one seeker.”

“Well Louis, there’s a high possibility that Albus Potter, currently the reserve player, could get onto the main team. Whether he becomes seeker or chaser is unknown. But he made a pretty nice performance as keeper last year, when the current keeper, Matthew Peakes, became sick.” Albus grinned because of the praise, while David clapped him happily on the back.

“Fred, don’t you think we should commentate about what’s happening on the field?”

“Why Louis, I do. Thou art shalt commentate.”

“Fred, that bit of Middle English or whatever was terrible. I’m pretty sure that grammar was wrong.”

“Whatever. Anyhow, Gryffindor has the quaffle, and Mitt and Van Malden are currently passing it between each other- oh, look Mitt passes it to Potter, nice to see they still remember him- and Potter fakes to the left, and scores in the right goalpost! I take all the credit for that, since I gave James all of my Quidditch skills.”

“You don’t have any Quidditch skills,” Louis said.

“I do too. So, Ravenclaw has the quaffle now…” The rest of the game passed rather unevently, with both Gryffindor and Ravenclaw making goals constantly, until they were tied 240-240 with no signs of the snitch.

“Fred, I’m getting tired of either cheering or booing every minute,” Louis complained. “Can’t they stop scoring? Or maybe Olivia can find the snitch. That’d be nice.”

“Well, I think- oh, Gryffindor scores again!”

“Excellent. Now we’re ahead by one goal. Oh, look! Renehan is beelining towards the ground!” Louis shouted. “She has to make it! I know she can! Tao is hurtling towards the snitch as well- GET IT RENEHAN!”

“And Renehan is hurtling towards the ground- YES, I THINK SHE CAUGHT IT!”

“But Renehan isn’t stopping in time- she smashed into the ground- OLIVIA!” Louis abandoned the stands and climbed down towards the pitch, where many people were already gathering.

“Is she okay?” Albus asked cautiously.

“She’s tough, she’ll be fine,” Art said, though he didn’t sound very confident.

“The Gryffindor team is probably meeting in the hospital wing, so I’m going there,” Albus said.

“See you later, Albus,” Rose said.

When Albus finally arrived in the hospital wing, Olivia was stretched out on the bed, unconscious. The rest of the team was already by her bedside. Some girls Albus assumed were Olivia’s friends were there as well. But the one person who Albus’s eyes were drawn to was Louis. He was a mess. His hair stuck up all of the place like he was trying to uproot his hair. His eyes looked blotchy.

“He’s liked her for a while,” Fred explained in an undertone to Albus. His mind jumped back to last year, when Olivia caught the snitch and crashed. Louis had been just as distraught then, but she became conscious pretty quickly. Unlike now.

“Move, everyone move! There are only six people allowed at a time, you know,” Madam Pomfrey said, scowling at them all. They shifted away from her bedside, but none of them left the room. She poured a small drop of a potion on her tongue. Olivia let out a weak cough.

“Olivia?” Louis said, dashing next to her, and ignoring Madam Pomfrey’s shouts of protests. “Are you alright?”

“Of course I’m alright,” Olivia said. “We won, didn’t we?” Everyone one in the room cheered. When she first crashed, it was a bit worrisome if she would survive.

“I was too chicken to do this last year when you crashed,” Louis said. “But this year…” Louis bent down, very slowly, and kissed her softly on the lips.

“Go Louis!” Fred shouted. Albus laughed and joined in the cheering.

“I’m afraid a lot of you have to leave, since only six people are allowed in here,” Madam Pomfrey said sternly, but there was a small smile tugging at her lips.

Everyone slowly filed out over the next five minutes, as Olivia and Louis snogged very intently, seemingly oblivious to the rest of the people in the room. Madam Pomfrey declared breaking the two of them up was a lost cause, and busied herself up with caring for other patients in the room.

Albus was smiling as he left. It was good to have a little love in the world.

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