Breakfast on Tuesday February 10th was a dreary affair. That morning the Daily Prophet had published the news that a small magical town in the south of England had been attacked and nearly burned to the ground. The biggest surprise to the Hogwarts students was that it had been a magical town and not a muggle one.
Whoever this group of terrorists were, they were becoming emboldened and brash. As a result, McGonagall put into place more rules and regulations on where students could be and when. And it began with the cancellation of the Valentine’s Day Hogsmeade trip.
All the students were disappointed of course, but luckily Freddie had no sense of decency and decided to throw a party.
“C’mon professor! You know it’s a terrible idea to keep three hundred kids holed up for too long!” Freddie insisted as he hastened to keep up with the old professor. McGonagall walked quickly and students in the corridors parted liked french doors for her.
McGonagall didn’t spare him a glance, “Mr. Weasley, it’s hardly appropriate—”
“But professor, we need to keep on living! If we let them control our lives and dictate where we can and can’t go, then they might as well kill all of us.” He thought that it might have been a tad dramatic, but McGonagall paused.
Freddie rocked on his heels anxiously while McGonagall stared straight ahead and thought. After a pause, “This gathering will be held in the Great Hall after supper. If you wish to decorate, then you will do it yourselves. No help from the house elves. And curfew will be
“That’s so early!”
McGonagall gave him a withering look, “You’ll have to make due. And,” she paused dramatically, “you will be responsible for clean-up.”
Freddie’s mouth popped open as he grasped for words. But McGonagall didn’t wait around for him to figure out how to use the English language and she disappeared into the crowd of students rushing to class. He pumped his fist into the air in excitement.
“Ow!” A younger student yelped after Freddie had elbowed him in the jaw.
“Sorry!” Fred hollered, but wasted no more time wandering the halls. He quickly made for the dungeon and entered the potions classroom just as the bell rang.
Slughorn hardly paid any attention to Freddie as he jumped onto the stool next to James. Freddie had to wonder if today would be the day. Would Slughorn’s skin finally just melt off of his face? Every year it seemed more and more likely that old Sluggie would turn into a pile of slime, but it never happened.
“Where were you?” James whispered.
“Planning a party,” Freddie whispered.
Sluggie turned around and glanced around the room looking for whoever was speaking in hushed tones. Freddie gave him an innocent smile, not that he was particularly concerned about Slughorn coming down hard on him.
As Slughorn explained the potion they would be concocting, Freddie told James about the Valentine’s Day party.
“Everyone go get your ingredients!” Slughorn waved them off with a flourish.
When James got back with the ingredients, he said, “I can’t believe McGonagall is letting you throw a party.”
“I made a good case.”
James stirred the potion thoughtfully and seemed to lose himself in the liquid.
“What are you thinking about?” Freddie asked suspiciously and added a sprinkle of Lark Dusk, turning the potion dark blue. “If you’re
planning on harassing Eliza—”
James shook his head, “No, nothing like that.” But he was still being uncharacteristically quiet.
“You haven’t really been bothering Eliza recently.” Freddie pointed out.
James shrugged, “I’ve moved on.”
Freddie looked sideways at James. James just focused on the potion and Freddie was slightly baffled by his subdued demeanor. He had been acting slightly less crazy, not driving the team quite as hard at Quidditch practice for example.
“After six years of chasing after Eliza, you’ve just… given up?”
Freddie didn’t say anything else. They finished their potion and got high praise from Slughorn. “A little lighter colour would be optimal, but excellent first attempt. Just excellent! When you finish your potion, you’re excused.” He announced to the class and then continued walking around with his hands resting on his round belly. Freddie and James didn’t waste any time packing their bags and darting from the dungeon. They wanted to get to the Great Hall before the rest of the classes let out, so they walked quickly.
“So who are you planning to ask?” Freddie questioned.
James shot him a confused look, “Ask what?”
“Ask to the party!” Freddie rolled his eyes. James was being extremely thick today. “Who are you going to ask?”
James hesitated, “I only found out about this an hour ago. Besides Valentine’s Day in four days, I doubt you’ll be able to pull it off.” It hurt that James doubted him.
Freddie snorted, “Oh, I’m going to pull it off.”
“I still think—”
As they rounded a corner, they ran into Penny who had been carrying a stack of papers which scattered to the floor. Freddie was knocked backwards with an “oof” and Penny, in her attempt to catch her papers, nearly fell to the floor. James reached out to try to catch her, but ended up going down with her, falling on top of her legs.
“Shit!” Penny gasped as she hit the ground.
Freddie groaned as he stood up. James detangled himself from Penny and tried to help her up, but she pushed his hand away.
“What are you doing?” James hissed.
Penny glared at him as she collected her papers. Freddie hurried to help her. “Me? Don’t you watch where you’re going?” She growled and Freddie recoiled a bit at her tone, even though it wasn’t directed towards him. He hoped they weren't in for a repeat of Quidditch practices of late, which had been filled with tension.
James’s eyes narrowed, “Well, we couldn’t see around the corner.”
“As opposed to me, who can see through stone.” Penny snapped.
Freddie looked between the two and had to laugh. They had been butting heads recently and it had made for annoying Quidditch practices. Penny had taken it upon herself to push back against James and in turn, James would shut down.
“Why aren’t you in class?” James pressed.
“Free period.” Penny said shortly. “And you? You’re support to be in potions—”
“Sluggie let us go early,” James said defensively.
“Because we made Essence of Insanity perfectly.” Freddie said proudly, not bothering to mention that tiny colouring issue. “Speaking of insanity, Pen, how about you be my date for Valentine’s Day.” James’s head whipped towards Freddie, but Penny wasn’t phased in the slightest. She didn't even look at James, whose face was turning pink.
She simply rolled her eyes and said, “You know the Hogsmeade trip was cancelled—”
“I’m organizing a party!”
Penny raised an eyebrow questioningly, not doubt about to ask how in the hell Freddie had managed to have a sanctioned party. Or
maybe it was a secret party….
Freddie didn’t give her a chance to speak, “And it’s all been sorted out with McGonagall. But I could use some help planning and getting the Great Hall ready.” He looked at Penny hopefully and she let out a short laugh.
“So you want me to help you with the heavy lifting and then I get the privilege of being your date?” Penny said playfully. “How magnanimous.”
James mouth turned up and he joked, “Maybe he’ll honor you with a dance.”
Penny grinned and nudged James, “Do you think he’ll bring me a corsage and stroll under the moonlight—”
Freddie glared, “I thought it might be fun to go together! Who else would you go with?”
Penny didn’t hesitate, “I’ll probably go with Rosie, of course.” Do not look at James. Do not look at James.
“And who am I supposed to—” Freddie began, but then his eyes fixed on someone. “SCORPIUS!”
The blonde boy proceeded to stumble over his feet after Fred startled him. “Wha…” He looked mildly dazed and confused as to why they were all standing in the middle of the corridor. Freddie waved him over excitedly.
“So I’m throwing a party—”
Freddie clapped Scorpius on the shoulder and nodded quickly, “For Valentine’s Day. Since Hogsmeade was cancelled, and I am in need of a hot date.” Scorpius’s eyes widened.
“There’s going to be a party?”
Freddie rolled his eyes, “If I have to explain this one more time…”
Scorpius had already moved to a different conversation in his mind. “I’m gonna do it.” Scorpius said determinedly. “I’m going to ask Tanzy.” He muttered to himself, talking himself into it. Penny had doubts that he would follow through, considering Scorpius had had a crush of the Slytherin girl for at least a year (that Penny knew of).
Freddie dropped his hand from Scorpius’s shoulder, looking dejected. “Well, who am I supposed to take as a date?”
“Sorry, mate.” Scorpius said sympathetically. “But this is the perfect opportunity—”
Penny snorted, “We’ve heard that before.”
Scorpius’s cheeks turned pink and his mouth flopped a couple time before going on the offensive. “Yeah and who are you asking? Rains
has been staring at you every meal from across the Hall. I bet he’ll ask you.” Penny could feel James staring at her, but she didn’t dare look sideways at him with Freddie and Scorpius right there. She hadn’t been able to stop thinking about when he had kissed her and if she looked at him, her feelings would be plastered all over her face.
And she was too proud, so that was a no-go.
“Oh, he’s dreamy.” Freddie nodded approvingly. “Maybe he wants to—”
Penny elbowed him in the side, “Stop trying to mooch everyone!”
“Fine, you can have him!” Freddie held his hands up in surrender.
“That’s not the point.”
Out of the corner of her eye, she saw James’s shoulders relax slightly. Penny was far too aware of him, but she couldn't help but think that he was also aware of her. He looked very off-put by the idea of her having a date to the Valentine’s Day dance. Which was ridiculous, Freddie had only just come up with this loony plan, she wasn’t going to start hunting down a date.
“I shall be going stag, thank you very much.” Penny said with finality.
“Me too.” James announced, unprompted.
“I’m going to ask Tanzy, have fun being alone.” Scorpius grinned and then turned on his heel and left.
James watched Penny carefully, observing how she purposefully avoided meeting his eyes. He was determined not to badger her, but it was killing him having keep all of his questions inside. He wanted to shake her and demand answers as to why she was avoiding him… James also desperately wanted to kiss her again. She had been so worried that them kissing would mess up the Quidditch team, but as far as James could tell, not kissing was also leading to similar problems.
“Freddie, I’ll meet you in the common room.” James found himself saying. He needed to speak to Penny alone and the opportunity rarely came since they were always with other students.
Penny’s eyes widened slightly but she expertly hid any surprise from Fred, who didn’t think twice about jaunting away. And why would he think anything was abnormal? Penny couldn't imagine that James had told Freddie about the kiss otherwise the whole school would know and he would constantly tease them.
Penny inhaled swiftly, “Whatever you’re going to say—”
“I just wanted to say that I’m sorry.” James said quickly, mostly to throw her off balance. He hadn’t planned on apologizing, but the annoyed look on Penny’s face made him want to prove her wrong. James was sure she expected him to fawn over her. “And I wish you would stop avoiding me.”
Penny hoisted her bag further into her shoulder and looked at the floor, “I haven’t been avoiding you.”
James snorted and couldn’t help but retort, “Yes, you have. And it’s alright, I get it. But we’re teammates and we need to be on the same page. So I just wanted to say that I’m sorry for kissing—”
“Shhh!” Penny hissed and looked around quickly. “It’s fine. Whatever, let’s just forget it.”
James didn’t quite believe her when she said it was ‘fine.’ But he was not going to argue when she told him to forget it. He had been trying to forget about that damned kiss for the past month. It was making Quidditch practices difficult. The bell rings, signaling that more students are about to flood the halls and James has no desire to get stuck in a sea of younger students.
“Alright then, I’ll see you at practice.”
Penny nodded curtly and they both made to leave, but headed in the same direction. “Uh, are you going to the common room?” Penny laughs awkwardly.
“Yeah, I was gonna—”
“Oh, okay. Let’s walk together then.” She said forcefully, trying to make things as normal as possible. “So what’s on the agenda for today’s practice?” It wasn't that she wanted thing to be uncomfortable, but she couldn't shake the idea that she was a stand in for Eliza and James was going to start chasing her around.
“Strategy.” James whispered.
“Why are you whispering?”
James looked around suspiciously, “There are spies everywhere. I can’t divulge secrets out in the open.”
Penny laughed at his dramatic comment. They chatted about non-specific Quidditch things until they reached the common room.
James continually gets himself riled up about their upcoming game against Ravenclaw. She can’t help but admire his dedication to Quidditch and wonders if he is considering going professional.
Despite the fact that they’re teammates, and some sort of friends, she didn’t feel comfortable asking.
So they walked and talked and James was more animated than he had been since New Year’s. He felt better knowing that Penny wasn’t going to ignore him anymore and the Quidditch team would be back on track.
Scorpius walked quickly to the Great Hall after evening free period. He wanted to arrive before the rest of his house mates had a chance to come and clutter up the tables. He had to make sure that he got a seat next to Tanzy so that he could ask her to Fred’s dance.
There was no chance that she already had another date since Freddie had only told a few people.
Scorpius’s eyes lit up when he saw that Tanzy was already sitting at the Slytherin table and there was only one girl sitting around her.
He made a beeline for her, but tried to keep a normal pace so that attention wouldn’t be drawn to him.
“Hey Scorpius,” Tanzy said when she saw him approach.
“Hi,” He said awkwardly, “do you mind if I sit?”
Tanzy gestured for him to sit. “You’re down for dinner early.”
Scorpius grabbed one of the metal pitchers and poured himself some ginger juice. “I finished with my Charms essay early, so I thought I would come and grab a seat before the rest of the school gets here.”
Tanzy sighed, “I haven’t even started and it’s due on Monday.”
Scorpius swallowed thickly, “If you wanted… I’d be happy to help.”
Tanzy laughed and shook her head, “Be careful what you volunteer for. I’m rubbish at Charms and helping me could take all weekend.” Scorpius was thrilled by the prospect of spending all weekend with her.
“Well, I’d be happy to help with the essay for as long as it takes. But Friday night, I was thinking we could do something else?” He asked hesitantly. Tanzy looked up from her supper in surprise.
“What’s happening Friday night?”
“Freddie Weasley is hosting a party. In the Great Hall.” He spoke in broken sentences, not able to get enough air to make it through a full thought. “Since the Hogsmeade day was cancelled, Fred decided that we all needed a little cheering up.”
“And the Headmistress was alright with this?”
Scorpius chuckled and took a long drink from his cup. “Freddie can be very persuasive.”
“I can imagine,” Tanzy giggled. Everyone was aware of how outlandish Freddie’s personality was, but he was the most positive person Scorpius had ever met. That positivity was infectious and he couldn’t imagine a time when the need for it was greater.
Scorpius took a deep breath, “So I was wondering if you wanted to go together. To the dance. On Friday.” He made a conscious effort to speak slowly and take breaths so that his face wouldn’t start turning purple from nerves.
Tanzy looked at him in surprise, “Really? That sounds fantastic.”
Scorpius’s head snapped back into his spine, “Great, that’s really great. Okay then, I’ll um… I’ll let you know what time it is. I’m sure Fred will make a big announcement or something.” Tanzy nodded enthusiastically, her blonde curls bobbing with her head. “And then we’ll make a plan.”
Tanzy smiled, “I’m really glad you asked me, Scorpius.”
They smiled at each other for a moment and it wasn’t too long before other students began entering the Great Hall. Scorpius felt like a weight had been lifted off of his shoulder now that he had finally asked Tanzy out. Maybe Al would stop mocking him for being a limp wand.
Rose and Penny walked into the Great Hall arm in arm. Everyone was dressed in cute casual clothes and it felt like a muggle high school party. Or at least, that’s what it seemed from what Rose had learned through watching muggle TV series.
Penny was dressed in a long skirt with a short slit on the side and a knot at her hip and a long sleeve V-neck shirt. Her outfit was a mix of purples and blacks, while Rose wore blue jeans and a light pink shirt.
“Hogwarts is such a party school,” Rose muttered with a tinge of disappointment in her fellow students.
“I know,” Penny said with excitement.
The music was steady, but not as loud as their after-hours parties usually were. Rose was glad that Freddie had decided on a more somber tone for this gathering and everyone seemed to be following his lead.
“Let’s grab drinks,” Rose suggested, looking for family faces among the crowd.
There was more of a mix of students than usual and Rose figured that was because McGonagall had given permission for all students to attend, rather than only fourth years and up. And it was a school-wide party so people felt comfortable coming even if they weren’t in Gryffindor or friends with the Weasley-Potter clan.
The Great Hall was modestly decorated, the biggest change being the enchanted ceiling that usually bounced between a clear blue sky during the day and a starry sky at night. For Valentine’s Day it was enchanted to be a sky full of fireworks and little fairies flying around tossing handfuls of hearts down on the students.
Rose looked up and red hearts were floating down towards her but dissipated before touching her head. She was thoroughly impressed with Freddie for his vision.
“Oh, look who finally grew a pair.” Penny muttered, nudging Rose’s shoulder.
Rose glanced towards the Hall entrance and saw Scorpius escorting Tanzy through the doors. Malfoy, per usual, was overdressed for the occasion and looked like he was ready to step onto the cover of a muggle fashion magazine. Rose found it quite pretentious how he always had to appear put-together and formal. Who wore a suit to a school party?
“You’re glaring,” Penny said pointedly.
“Why does he always need to be so formal?” Rose rolled her eyes and poured herself some red punch. Under normal circumstances she wouldn’t trust Freddie not to have spiked it, but there were teachers casually observing so she doubted Fred would do anything so stupid.
Penny smirked and tossed her auburn hair, “At least he’s not wearing a tie. And look, he’s undone the top buttons… that’s practically lounging attire.” Rose snorted into her drink in an attempt not to laugh. She appreciated that Penny was able to make fun of Scorpius, even if the traitor was friends with Malfoy.
Rose chatted with students whom she didn’t see much of outside of classes and Penny went off to rescue Haley from her own drama at some point. Rose danced and even let Albus step on her toes for a few songs. He was such a spectacular Quidditch player, but a horrible dancer who seemed determined to make sure Rose wouldn’t be able to walk the next day.
Halfway through the party, Rose and Tanzy ended up chatting at the edge of the room.
Tanzy had always been nothing but kind to Rose, but she still felt awkward and wondered what Scorpius had said to her. If Tanzy was dating Scorpius, Rose could only imagine what Tanzy thought of her. Rose was curious whether or not Tanzy would try to defend her boyfriend or tell Rose to leave him alone. It wouldn't be the first time a girl who fancied Malfoy had tried to pick a fight with Rose.
“You look really lovely,” Tanzy complimented. Rose's head jerked in surprise.
Rose glanced down at herself, wishing that she looked half as good as Tanzy. “Thanks, I really like your dress.” The colour played really well with her blue eyes and blonde curls. Tanzy and Scorpius will have beautiful blonde babies, Rose thought snidely.
Tanzy fiddled with the hem of her light blue dress, “I feel a little silly, like I’m the only one wearing a dress.” She was one of a few girls that had opted to wear a dress, but Rose thought that it was a very cute casual dress.
“Well, we have to take the opportunities we have to look nice.” Rose shrugged. “Who knows when the next Hogsmeade visit will happen with these psychos on the loose.” Tanzy’s eyes widened and then she looked at the floor suddenly, her face stormy. Rose immediately felt guilty for bringing up such a sensitive topic to someone she didn’t know very well.
She touched Tanzy’s arm, “I’m sorry, I didn’t mean to sound so… abrasive.”
Tanzy looked up and smiled softly, but it didn’t reach her eyes. “It’s alright… I’m still processing everything.”
Rose nodded reassuringly and wracked her brain for a different subject.
“So where did Malfoy get off to?” Rose said with a tinge of annoyance. “It’s so rude that he just left you here.”
Tanzy’s mouth turned up, “I think he just went to say hi to Xavier and Al.”
“You didn’t want to go with him?”
Tanzy shrugged, “No, I was actually looking for some of my friends. But they’ve probably all sneaked off to snog in broom closets and such.” Tanzy craned her neck, as if to prove that she was in fact looking for her friends.
Rose got the feeling that Tanzy was more of a loner than came across at first sight. She always seemed to be in a crowd of friends, but upon closer inspection was never engaged or active in conversation.
“Can I ask you something?” Tanzy said quickly, like she hadn’t meant to blurt it out.
Rose hesitated, “Um… sure. I suppose.”
“Do you think Scorpius is a good person?”
Rose’s head nearly snapped off of her body with how quickly she looked at Tanzy.
Seeing the crazy look on Rose’s face made Tanzy laugh. “I know you and he don’t get on—”
“Which is why I’m not the best person to answer that question.”
Tanzy looked away and then sighed, “I know that you two hate each other. It’s just… he’s so sweet to me and I’ve never seen him be rude to anyone.” She paused thoughtfully.
“But…” Rose prompted.
“But I know he’s done really horrible things to you. I suppose it’s just hard to reconcile how he can be so awful to you, his best friend’s cousin, but be so kind with me.”
Rose thought for a moment. She disliked Scorpius with her whole being. He had done things to her that still made her eyes burn. And he was arrogant. At the same time, she had never seen him direct any of his hatred towards anyone but her. In recent years, Malfoy had become more tolerable and they had even studied together on occasion.
“I don’t know,” she responded truthfully.
Tanzy didn’t look satisfied. “I don’t think I should trust him.”
Rose wasn’t sure what Tanzy’s goal was, but she was beginning to feel like Tanzy was looking for an excuse to walk away. The whole school knew that Rose and Scorpius had a tumultuous relationship, but the whole school also knew that they only treated each other with such contempt.
Tanzy had to know all this. Which meant that the girl had to have major trust issues if she knew that Rose hated Malfoy, but still wanted to hear what she thought of him.
Rose knew she would regret this, “He’s not a 100 percent jerk. And if you tell him—or anyone—I said that, I will hex you. I think he’s an arrogant arse, but I give as good as I get. It’s not like I’m completely innocent either.”
Tanzy looked mildly suspicious and surprised by Rose’s confession.
“Thanks,” she finally muttered and made some excuse about going to the bathroom.
Rose watched the blonde walk away. She was very confused about the conversation, mostly because it had seemed like Tanzy was very interested in Scorpius. Rose would’ve assumed that Tanzy believed anything he told her and would always take his side.
Persephone nearly bounced off of Rose and they gripped onto each other to keep from toppling over. Persephone didn’t spare a moment before asking, “Was that Malfoy’s date?”
Rose glanced into the crowd, “Yeah, it was.”
“What did she want?”
Rose’s brows furrowed, “I’m not entirely sure. She was asking me if I thought he was a good person.”
Persephone snorted and giggled, “You are the worst person she could’ve asked.”
“That’s what I said.”
Rose had to agree, it was a very odd conversation. She couldn’t imagine why a Slytherin would trust the word of a Gryffindor about her sworn enemy.
“Oh look,” Persephone motioned to the dance floor, “I think Sybil is afraid of Freddie.” Freddie was laughing and having a good old time, trying to spin Sybil in a circle but she looked absolutely mortified. Freddie started flapping his arms and jumping.
“Should we rescue her?” Rose pondered.
“Nah, she’ll be fine. Oh, there’s Albus, how do I look?”
Rose told her she looked beautiful and Persephone bounced off to go flirt with Albus. Rose wasn’t pretty sure that she wasn’t actually interested in Al romantically, but they liked each other and enjoyed flirting.
“Did I just see you talking with Tanzy.”
Rose jumped and gripped her chest in surprise. “Merlin, Malfoy, next time make some noise! Don’t just sneak up on people.” She hissed and glared up at him through her eyelashes.
“I wasn’t sneaking,” he snapped, “there’s a party going on, in case you haven’t noticed. Bound to be some background noise. Why were you talking with Tanzy?”
Rose folded her arms. “She came to talk to me.”
“You.” Rose replied smugly, knowing it would drive him mad. He didn’t disappoint as his face turned red with frustration.
“What did you say?”
Rose smirked, “Horrible things. I told her she should run.”
Scorpius’s mouth popped open and he looked at a loss for words for a second. “You really are despicable.” Rose set her mouth in a hard line. She was tempted to tell him that she was only messing with him, but somehow the truth was worse.
“It’s her own fault for asking me what I thought of you.” Rose said defensively.
Scorpius’s mouth worked and he finally just turned on his heel and walked away.
Rose’s shoulders drooped and she wondered why Tanzy was acting so strange. In some roundabout way, Rose felt like she was protecting Malfoy by not telling him about the conversation with the Slytherin girl. Tanzy had said weird things and acted as though she wanted Rose to bash Malfoy.
Rose wasn’t sure what Tanzy’s game was, but she couldn’t understand why the girl would come to Rose for character testimony on her sworn enemy.
A/N: Thanks for reading guys! I'm working a couple chapters ahead and am having some writer's block so any reviews/feedback are much appreciated. Stay inside and read!
Track This Story: Feed
Write a Review
JOIN HARRY POTTER FANFICTION
Get access to every new feature the moment it comes out.Register Today!