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Watch out, cause the next chapters might be rated NC-17. I know that is not allowed at hpff.com but you can always check out my livejournal if I stop updating this story here. A big thanks to my new beta, Katie! ----------------------------------------------------------------------- CHAPTER TWO – FALLING “I believe in people lying I believe in people dying I believe in people flying I believe in people crying” (Excess by Tricky) When I finally reached my room and collapsed on top of my bed, the bandages I had wrapped around my left under arm were already soaked in blood. It quite had been a quite small miracle nobody (and especially not Hermione) had noticed the wet spot in the black, long-sleeved T-shirt I had been wearing during dinner. I wondered what Hermione would have said if she had noticed it, though. She probably would have sent me to the psychiatric ward of St. Mungo’s right away. Rolling out of bed, I strolled towards the bathroom on the other side of the room before cautiously starting to unwrap the scarlet bandages. I flinched as I pulled the tacky, wet material off and saw the long vertical cuts. They weren’t bleeding at the moment, but judging by the still fragile scab that had formed itself, they would as soon as anything touched them. Not able to resist myself though, I ghosted my index finger over the rather red and irritated skin around the wounds. My breath caught when my finger touched the first cut.Closing my eyes all sort of images flashed in front of my view. Everything that had been haunting me for the last few months, or even years, came back. Death Cedric, screaming mother, scarlet snake-eyes, Sirius falling… A jolt of pain brought me back to present with a start and I hurriedly started pouring water over the wounds to clean them again.Careful not to damage the scabs even more, I softy wiped off the diluted blood with a towel.
~*~
Overhearing a row between Ron and Hermione wasn’t exactly the thing I had expected to witness when I plopped down next to the door against the cold stone wall later that afternoon, but it was what happened though.I ran my fingers through my hair, listening open-mouthed to the conversation I was not supposed to hear. “…” “Come on, Hermione! He really has been acting like a downright prick ever since he’s arrived!” “Ron!” I heard Hermione’s shrill voice shout, dripping with indignation. I gulped. Little did I know I would to hear my two best friends arguing about me when seated myself on the ground in an effort to make it myself more comfortable. I tried to get to my feet, wishing I hadn’t heard anything, but nevertheless feeling as though I was glued against the wall.I was somewhat hypnotized; subconsciously I wanted to hear what they were saying. “It’s true, Hermione! He hardly talks to us, and when he does it is just in that snappy way of his!” “Well, he’s just been a bit moody I suppose, and seeing the cir-” “A bit?!” Ron exclaimed, interrupting her in mid-sentence. “He almost bit my nose off during lunch!” He took a deep breath. I was feeling sorry for him, I really was. “That’s not exactly what I call ‘a bit moody’; it’s more like ‘bloody frustrated’ if you ask me!” The quill I had been holding in an attempt to sketch the Golden Snitch broke into two with a loud “-CRACK!” Oops. Ron and Hermione fell silent. Would they actually have been able to hear that as well? I thought in panic. There was a profound silence after which I heard a gentle knock on the door, and Hermione’s voice calling: “Can we come in, please?”She sounded both shocked and afraid. I refused to answer. “Harry?” Hermione came in even though I hadn't answered the door. She looked awkwardly at someone behind her, probably Ron, as she saw me sitting against the wall. Ron came in as well. “Hermione, Ron.” I greeted them dryly, not bothering to get up. I saw Hermione eying Ron uneasily; Ron’s face was still quite red because of the yelling. He cleared his throat nervously. “Eh-” He stuttered. “Why… eh-” I gave him a questioning look. He swallowed, but at last managed to say: “Why are you sitting against the wall, Harry?” I looked down at my completely screwed up drawing (full of splashes of ink), before answering: “I was tired of lying on the bed all day, and that desk chair really is an annoying pain in the ass, so I decided to sit over here.” I wasn’t even lying. “Oh.” Ron said uncomfortably. “And you eh… you didn’t accidentally hear anything on the hallway, did you?” I looked up, a smirk crossed my lips. “Well, I accidentally did,” I answered coolly. I heard Hermione take short, edgy breaths. “You heard the two of us talking, didn’t you?” She asked cautiously. “Maybe ‘talking’ isn’t exactly the right word.” I said my voice still remarkably even. I raised an eyebrow. “So you’ve been spying on us?” Ron stammered, sounding as if he could not believe his own ears. I looked into Ron’s eyes, his ears turned almost instantly red. “Well yes, but not intentionally anyway.” “Right.” I heard Ron mumble. “Indeed ‘right’, and why in the name of Merlin were you arguing about me in front of my door if you didn’t want me to hear?” I questioned, getting quite irritated. “So you confess you’ve been eavesdropping then?” He asked angrily. “No, Ron. I haven’t. I was sitting here ever since before you two started bickering about me.” “Yeah right, my arse! I bet you were really keen to hear me and Hermione quarrelling about you. It’s so damn obvious you’re jealous because I’m Hermione’s boyfriend, and you’re not, you insensitive mother-fucking bastard!” I got up; the room seemed to grow darker, the air around me sparkling with a strong, un-known sort of magic. Hermione whimpered, and covered her mouth with her hands. I still wasn’t as tall as Ron but I had reached the quite honourable height of six feet already. Ron gulped. He was really lucky I wasn’t allowed to do magic outside of school. “Take that back… Now!” I pronounced slowly, my voice trembling with rage and emotion. It took a lot of mental strength to prevent myself from doing something I might regret later. Ron nodded shakily and opened his mouth to form the word “yes”, but what found its way out was a trembling “No.”My eyes narrowed in fury; Hermione was shouting desperately but I couldn’t understand her. My ears were ringing, and Ron’s words were echoing inside of me. Jealous… insensitive… mother-fucking bastard… boyfriend… I took a few steps forward, and took Ron firmly by the collar while pushing him against the wall. “Take. That. Back. Now!” Our faces were barely five inches apart. Ron squealed; his whole body was shaking by now. The skin under his freckles had gone really pale. I guess I looked quite terrifying. “OK.” Ron squeaked. “I’m sorry.” Breathing heavily, I let go of him; my hands were trembling as well. Hermione and Ron hurried out of the room; Hermione said something before leaving that I could not comprehend. I stumbled towards the bathroom and fell on my knees in front of the lavatory bowl, clutching it with both hands and vomiting hard. Shaking, I got up and wiped off my mouth, and in search for something sharp I smashed down a little mirror lying in the medicine chest. I ripped off the bandages from my arm before placing the tip of one of the especially sharp fragments on my skin and pushing it in hard and deep.
~*~
It was still early in the morning when I woke up on September first, judging by the small bit of light that hadmanaged to wrestle itself through the gaps in the curtains. Sighing, I stumbled out of bed, scratching my balls absent-mindedly. I opened the window and leaned with both arms on the windowsill, breathing the fresh, but nevertheless rather polluted, air of Muggle London. Actually I didn’t expect today would be any different from the two previous ones: I was still bad-tempered, Ron would still be mad at me, and Sirius would still be dead. Great. My eyes wandered to the three long reddish-brown lines on my left inner arm; one of them was really deep and had started bleeding again during the night so my arm now looked as though it belonged to the decor of a horror film. I guessed it would be better if I bandaged them again today, or people might ask awkward questions if they noticed them. I sighed again; rain was to be expected today, if you looked at the dark grey clouds that were forming in the north. The shapes were beautiful though. I had always liked the clouds, they somehow seemed to conceal a completely different world above; one that could couldn’t possibly be worse than the one below. I was rather quiet when I walked down for breakfast a couple of hours later, buried in thoughts. There was no Hedwig to hoot softly in disapproval as I left her with the luggage in the hall downstairs. I only had her empty cage to bring with me to Hogwarts. I did wonder where she was though, because I hadn't seen her since I had arrived at the Leaky Cauldron. “Morning, Mrs. Weasley,” I greeted Molly after I had brought my trunk and Hedwig’s cage to the hall. “Good morning, Harry dear,” she said, hugging me tightly. “Did you sleep well? You look a bit peaky.” "I'm just fine, Mrs. Weasley," I answered while heading towards the bar to have breakfast. I still wasn't hungry, but I doubted Mrs. Weasley would let me leave without eating anything. "Want some bacon and eggs?" Hermione asked me, sounding way too friendly. I heard Ron mumble something unintelligible on the other side of the table, but I ignored him. "Yes, please," I said politely, looking for the ketchup and pouring some on my eggs as she handed me a plate. Hermione cleared her throat rather nervously.“Eh-” She began. “I think it is about time you guys make up with each other.” I frowned. “Well, I am not going to ‘make it up’ with Ron unless he apologizes for calling me an ‘insensitive mother-fucking bastard.’”Ron glared at me. “And I guess you don’t need to apologize for anything at all.” I ignored him once more and focussed my attention on my plate. “Come on. You two are being so immature.” Hermione informed us. “I’m not the one who is being immature, he is!” Ron and I chorused, pointing at each other and crossing our arms over our chests afterwards, both looking highly affronted. “This is getting us nowhere…” Hermione groaned. Breakfast passed in a tense atmosphere, as did the trip to King’s Cross station in Muggle taxis (Ron and I both refused to sit next to each other and that’s why a greatly irritated Hermione came to sit in between us). Extremely bad tempered I jumped on the Hogwarts Express, after saying a quick good-bye to Mr. and Mrs. Weasley, ready for another wonderful year at Hogwarts. Yes, that was sarcasm. -------------------------------------------------------------------------- Please review! PS: Sorry for not yet updating Fallen Angel, I plan on posting the next chapter any day now but it just isn't finished yet at the moment. I hope you guys understand. This chapter was written weeks ago but my beta just sent it back so that's why I post it ;)

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