Beyond the Foggy Path

Chapter 40: Best Friend

She was wrong . . . Oh god she was SO wrong . . .

Erela scribbled in her notebook angrily on a drawing in the back. The lanky girl pursed her lips and bolded the lines with aggression before the led broke. With a deep groan, Erela hit the back of her head to the headboard. Stupid . . . stupid stupid stupid . . . boom boom boom . . .

Her eyes were closed while she let the heat in the back of her head subside slowly. It was only day two since the break up and already she regretted snapping at Landon. The pain in her chest was just like the first time, only there was more blinding anger that made the heartbreak a little easier. Erela ran her fingers through her hair and lightly tugged her roots before she hopped out of bed and slipped into comfortable clothing to walk around in.

There weren't a lot of students around, the castle was quiet except for the occasional ghosts that floated through walls to go to some get-together that had been going on since break started. Suppose she could hang out with Michael. It had been a while since they spoke and he was staying in Hogwarts while his parents did some traveling in Paris for business. Besides, she needed her best friend while she was emotionally damaged.

Erela shoved her hands into her sweatshirt pocket as she made way toward the library, where Michael had been as of late. Even after working on schoolwork, he read through books on some new interest of his. He wouldn't say what, just that it was fascinating. The Hufflepuff girl slipped into the library and walked past bookshelf to bookshelf for the dark haired Slytherin she had been friends with since year one.

And just two minutes in searching, there he was reading a pile of books when he looked up toward her.

"Hey, robot," he greeted with a smile.

Even that nickname was a pang in her chest. "Hey, snake . . ." she greeted.

"Still pretty down, I see."

She nodded and approached the Slytherin boy. "You'd be pretty down too if you and your boyfriend broke up on holiday."

"Yeah, but at least my imaginary boyfriend doesn't have emotional problems and abandonment issues," Michael rolled his eyes.

"Abandonment issues? What are you talking about?"

"Don't all dogs have that kind of issue when their master leaves them?" Michael raised a brow at her and closed his book.

Erela rolled her eyes and turned to leave. "You're such a prick . . ."

"Wait wait," Michael called after her and turned her around by her shoulder. "Sorry. I know you're hurting. That was a dick move . . ."

"A VERY dick move . . ." she muttered and crossed her arms over her chest.

"Come on," the Slytherin boy sighed and draped his long arm over her shoulder. "We're going to go hang out. Just the two of us. It's been a while since your ex stole you."

Erela rolled her eyes at Michael and shook her head. "Sorry I haven't been hanging out with you," she groaned playfully. "Will you EVER forgive me?"

"I don't know . . . buy me a butterbeer and I'll think about it."

"Your inner Slytherin is showing . . ."

"Bitch, I'm allowed to show greed from time to time. Just like you're allowed to show ruthlessness," Michael chuckled and rubbed her arm.

"Yeah, but MY ruthlessness isn't exactly the prettiest . . ." she mumbled as she remembered what Landon had told her before he left for his break. That she hurt people on purpose.

"Your social skills is pretty unfiltered enough to be mean in an honest way," he shrugged.

"Yeah. Look where that got me. I have a very small circle of friends."

"Is popularity REALLY that important to you?"

"No . . ." Erela answered immediately. "I'm just saying it's not normal to have this few friends in a span on six years."

"Well you managed to make more without my help."

"Joy." And one of them she went out with and absolutely couldn't stand her anymore. "Fine. A butterbeer then. Must I buy you a nice meal too?"

"Woah there. I don't swing that way," he laughed.

Erela narrowed her eyes at him and lightly nipped his head, making him squeal a little and gently shove her away with a big smile on his face.


"I ate too much . . ." Erela groaned with her head on the table. The two sat in the Three Broomsticks in a little corner close to the fireplace. They both had a plate of what used to have food on it, what was left were only crumbs and a half empty pint of butterbeer.

"You consumed more drinks than any drunk I've ever seen," Michael mused as he picked at his teeth.

"They're good, okay?" Erela mumbled and pressed her cheek against the wood. "It's almost a crime to leave here drinking only one."

"Fine fine. Whatever your excuse is," the Slytherin boy chuckled and finished the last bit of his drink, foam on his upper lip when he drained his mug dry. With a lick of his lips, he leaned over the table with a smug look on his face. "Now lets work the food baby out of our system."

"No . . ."

"Yes . . ."

"No . . ."

"Yes . . ."

"No. I'm staying here until that need to roll out of here goes away."

"You're not THAT full."

"Yes, I am."

"Get back on your scrawny legs and get moving," Michael laughed and pulled her up by her arm. "I swear if you had just as much determination to finish your schoolwork, you'd have some determination to work out more."

"I'm more willing to use brain muscle. Knowledge gets people farther in life than brawn," Erela sighed as Michael pushed her out the door, just barely putting her coat back on before the autumn cold enveloped her the moment she went outside.

"So does having sex appeal to get a job. Which clearly, you have none of."

"That's offensive . . ."

"It's true though," he raised his brows at her and linked his arm with hers. "I love you, Erela. But you're the most unappealing lady I've ever seen."

"You're into guys . . ."

"No need to remind me," he rolled his eyes. "I do know what guys want in a girl, you know."

"Sure sure . . ." Erela sighed while the two walked out of the village toward a pathway to the woods. The Hufflepuff girl looked around her as the voices from the village became quieter and quieter until the only thing to be heard was Michael's bantering and the sound of soft crunching from their feet stepping into snow. "So where are you taking me?" she asked, interrupting whatever topic he went off on.

"Just to look around. Is it a crime to look around with my best friend in the world?" he answered.

"Not technically a crime. Just curious," Erela shrugged when the Shrieking Shack came into view.

"Hey . . . why don't you stay in the Shrieking Shack for the night?" Michael mused.

"What!? No!" her voice cracked.

"No one lives there and no one even goes in there," Michael reminded her. "Come on, I dare you!"

"No, I'm not doing it."

"So you're willing to spend the night taming a werewolf but not sleep alone in a haunted shack?" he raised a brow at her.

Erela narrowed her eyes at Michael. "My only fear is that you'll attack me while I'm not looking to give me a heart attack . . ."

"Cross my heart. I won't scare you to death while your guard is down," he rolled his grey eyes at her.

Erela kept her eyes on him. "Promise?"

"Promise," he nodded.

Erela puffed her hair away from her eyes and looked back at the Shrieking Shack. It leaned and creaked, like the building was crying. She let out a sigh and timidly took a few steps to the haunted shack.

"Stupid dare . . ." she muttered.

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