“Sooo,” I leaned against the old bookshelves behind me, glancing at Louis’ nervous face. “remind me why we’re doing this again?”
For the first time since… ever, Louis looked horrible. His hair was sticking up in ten different directions, his normally very beautiful large eyes had shrunk to the size of skittles, surrounded by dark bags that proved he had a bad day, and his robe was on inside out. I had tried to at least fix his tie but he wouldn’t let me. He’d swat my hands away and hissed at me to keep my eyes on the front.
“Because,” Louis said, not removing his eyes from the peephole he created between some books. He had the whole stalker look down pat. “She’s with that slug.”
I rolled my eyes at him and turned back around to spy with him from behind the bookshelf. I felt bad for invading Nell’s privacy… but it wasn’t like I had a choice. Louis practically dragged me down here right after class had ended.
You see, Nell was in the library. With Zackery Montague. Yes, the one who was friends with Potter. You can see why Louis was freaking out about this.
Apparently -right after I ran away from breakfast this morning feeling as if I was about to die- some random bloke asked Nell whether she could help him with his homework because he was having ‘some trouble understanding the material’. And Nell agreed, surprising all of us, and if I could believe Rose, Louis almost died on his pumpkin juice.
“This doesn’t even make any sense.” Louis whispered, more to himself than to me. This boy really had gotten mad. “He’s a bloody seventh year, she’s not, how on earth is she supposed to help him?!” he whisper-yelled frustrated.
I shrugged. “He just wants to get into her pants. I mean he’s pretty attractive I get why she said yes”
Louis glared at me.
I should not have said that. I should not have said that.
“I mean… he looks like a troll compared to you, of course! You know you’re the prettiest flower in the garden.” I tried to save myself. It was true though. Not that Zackery looked anything like a troll, Louis just had that look that belonged on the front cover of a magazine.
The glare remained, but he focused himself back on our targets. “If only she knew what kind of a guy he is. I can’t believe she actually said yes to him.” he cried desperately.
“If only she knew you liked her like this, maybe then she’d say no.”
Louis stiffened and shifted uncomfortably on his feet. He didn’t like to admit he had a thing for her out loud -even though it was extremely obvious to me- because it was doing no good to his ego. He was still a Gryffindor after all, if I may say so myself, as a Gryffindor.
“That’s not the point. I would’ve been standing here too if it were Rose or you he asked. Zackery is just bad news.”
“Are you kidding me?!” I yelled, forgetting where we were for a second and almost blowing our cover. Louis ducked and pulled me down with him when people looked our way, including Nell and Zackery from across the bookshelf. Luckily, they didn’t see us.
“Are you out of our mind?!” He hissed, placing a hand over his racing heart from almost getting caught.
“Are you out of your mind?” I snorted. “You would not be standing here if it were me or Rose Zackery asked for help. You’ve practically already written your best-man speech for Potter and I’s wedding, and James is at least 200 times worse than that sod.”
He stayed quiet for a second. “That’s different.” He stood back up, checking if no one was looking our way any longer. “But nice to know you’d want him to pick me as your best-man, I was actually thinking you’d pick Damian because he’s a bit more articula-“
“How is that different?” I cut him off, raising my arms and letting them fall back at my sides.
“James is my cousin.”
Louis puffed and waved his hand around, making me clear he didn’t want to talk about this any longer. “I don’t know, you two are meant to be together or something? But could you just please focus on the task at hand here?” he turned back around, as if he hadn’t just said the most hurtful thing in the world.
Meant to be?
Yea, if pigs could fly!
I focused my attention back on Nell and Zackery, muttering under my breath that Potter could go die in a hole for all I cared.
Zackery was, indeed, not paying much attention to the books in front of them. Wen Nell leaned over to reach for a book across the table, I saw him quickly glance down her shirt. I scowled as Louis muttered a thousand curse words under his breath, some of them I didn’t understand, and realized they were in French.
“Montague my ass, there’s nothing Romeo about him.” I hissed.
“Exactly what I was thinking.” Louis gritted his teeth and I was surprised he hadn’t done anything stupid yet, like hex the pervert.
“So what are we going to do now?” I asked Louis, scowling again when Zackery ‘accidently’ touched Nell’s arm.
“What do you mean?”
I looked over at Louis, raising one brow. “What do you mean, what do I mean? We are going to do something right? Don’t tell me you dragged me all the way down here just to stare at them.”
Louis bit his lip, narrowing his eyes at the sight in front. “Well what do you suggest we should do?”
I shrugged, having no idea whatsoever.
“Maybe I should just go up there and swing it.” I said.
“No you should not. You’re terrible at improvising.”
“No I’m not!”
“Yes, you are.”
“No I am NOT!”
“Yes, you are. Wait –OI, what are you doing!” Louis yelled after me, but I was already on my way towards Nell and Zackery’s table.
“NELL!” I yelled loudly, making my voice sound a bit shaking so that she’d immediately notice something was off. Nell jumped, looking around in alarm as Zackery just stared at me.
“Nell, you’ve got to come with me!” I said urgently.
She stood up, looking concerned. “What’s wrong?”
I had nothing. I didn’t think this far ahead.
C’mon Ali, think of something!
“Rose! Rose, it’s Rose she needs you!” I got out between pants, and Nell looked at me scared.
“Why? What’s going on?”
“She… euh…. She’s pregnant!”
What the actual FUCK. That’s what I was improvising?!
Nell’s mouth dropped open, and so did everyone else’s that had heard me scream at my friend for dear life. Even the librarian, who I now noticed was halfway on her way towards me, probably to give me a firm talking to for being this loud, had stopped dead in her tracks.
“Yes! It’s… Malfoy’s!”
Rose was going to KILL me. I only choose Scorpius’ name because it was the one name that popped into my head that wasn’t either one; related to her, or two; her best friends.
Nell was actually trembling with shock and her hands flew to her head, covering her ears. “I don’t understand-“
“No time to talk. Just come with me.” I grabbed her arm and dragged her out of the library, pulling on her as she twisted around to look at the people around us.
“Why did you yell that! I know you’re shocked, I mean Merlin so am I but Rose is not going to be happ-“
“What’s going on?” Louis asked, feigning confusion. He followed us out a second later, hands shoved deep into his front pockets as he bit his lower lip. He knew what was going on. He was bloody there.
“Apparently, Rose’s pregnant!” Nell shrieked, twisting her arm out of my grasp and squeezing Louis bicep.
“No, she’s actually not.”
Nell gaped at me. I could see her having a little battle inside her head. She wasn’t sure whether she should believe me or not. And finally, after remembering that Rose could never in a million years be pregnant at the age of 16, she attacked me.
“WHAT THE BLOODY HELL WAS THAT FOR? YOU SCARED ME SHITLESS YOU BLOODY IDIOT!” her fists were everywhere on my body, punching me but not to a point where it hurt.
Until finally, Louis managed to pull her off of me and held her close to him. She placed both of her hands on his arms around her waist to steady herself, taking one or two shaky breaths. I bet he was enjoying that. The git. I'd done all the hard work and now here he was, being rewarded.
I was having none of that.
"Louis dared me to." I exclaimed. Louis's mouth dropped to the floor, or, actually, on top of Nell's head, and he glared at me.
"We were bored doing some homework and then we saw you in the library," I talked before any of them could get so much as a word out. "And out of the blue Louis said that it'd be funny if we scared you in front of everybody."
They were quiet for a second, Nell with eyes wide and Louis mouthing that he was going to hurt me in all the ways he knew possible, his face had turned a light pink with anger.
"But he didn't tell you to say -no, sorry, scream- that Rose was pregnant did he? Only you could come up with something so stupid." She stated, peeling Louis' arms off from around her.
Louis' face fell, but he quickly covered it up when she turned around to glance at him, asking whether her statement was true with one look, and he nodded.
Why was I always the one that got crapped on?! I helped a friend (sure, in the progress screwing up another friend’s reputation, but it wasn’t something I couldn’t fix) and got nothing but nasty remarks in return.
I felt something glow in my pocket and realized it was the parchment, reminding me yet again that I had detention in a few minutes. I hissed, it got hotter by the minute.
Great, as if this day couldn’t get any bloody worse.
"You know what? I'm leaving." I narrowed my brows at my friends, having had enough off this. "I did the dare, you got scared, and now you owe me." I pointed a finger towards Louis. "Now if you don't mind, professor Longbottom is waiting for me."
Before the two of them could say anything, I turned around and stalked away.
The ungrateful git. I'd gotten Nell to leave Zackery all by himself so he wouldn't have to act like a bloody stalker staring at her from behind some bloody books. And he didn’t even thank me. He was desperate beyond words.
The parchment said that I had to be in the greenhouse at 4.30 pm. I had five more minutes. I decided to take the long way there to calm down from what just happened and to kill some time. I wondered how long I had to be in detention. Dinner started at 6. I only hoped professor Longbottom was going to let me go eat. Food was very important to me.
As in really important. Food and sleep. Those two things I could not live without. I must have been a Koala in my past life. Those animals were lazy. All they did all day was wake up, eat, hang on a tree, sleep, and repeat the process. What a great life.
I had finally arrived at the greenhouse where I had to be –not ready to face professor Longbottom at all, but, yeah, it wasn’t like I could just disappear in thin air (although I was certain there was a spell for that). I had to do my time in detention or worse punishments would follow. I already cost Gryffindor 10 points (which Rose gladly reminded me of for the past three days. Great friend she was).
I took a deep breath and stepped inside. I was immediately hit by the clear air and smell of fresh soil, mixed with the many rich and warm scents the plants provided. I always had to stand still and observe a second when I entered one of the greenhouses. I thought Muggle plants were already impressive, but they were nothing compared to magical herbs. And for a split second there I regretted dropping Herbology class.
“It’s amazing, isn’t it?” I almost jumped out of my skin when I heard someone from behind me speak. I turned to the direction where the sound came from.
There, in a far corner of the classroom, stood a guy around my age. I took a step closer to see him clearly, but realized the shadows around him made it impossible. “Gives me the impression that I’m in a completely different universe.”
I shifted on my feet, suddenly feeling a bit uncomfortable being alone in a greenhouse. “Do you always hang out in dark greenhouses on Tuesday nights?”
You had to be sarcastic, Ali?
The guy stepped forward, and immediately, I swallowed upon seeing his face. Pale, curious-colored eyes flashed through the strands of his dark hair. His jaw was firm and strong, and his nose long but slightly crooked, as if it had been broken and left to its imperfections. There was an odd lightness about his eyes, though, and a small curve to his lips, as if there were something terribly funny only he knew the answer to.
Who was this guy? And why had I never seen him before?
“I’m here for the same reason you are.” He explained.
He also had detention? At the exact same time with the exact same professor? That barely happened. The only time this happened to me before was in fourth year. And we all know nothing good came out of that. In fact, if that’d never happened, my life would’ve been completely different. I wouldn’t be harassed by an idiot every day.
“How is that-“
I got interrupted by a painful sting in my back pocket. Cursing, I reached for the parchment and pulled it out, only for it to burn up in my hand just in time. “Bloody hell.” I hissed. That was mental.
“Rookie mistake.” And right then, the man of the hour arrived. Professor Longbottom stalked towards his small desk (fun fact: it was actually just a tree stump) and dropped his belongings. “Never put your detention slip in your pocket. It’ll burn you once the hour of detention has arrived.”
I glued my eyes to the floor, I was not ready to look him in the eyes. “Yea I noticed.”
I heard a soft chuckled from beside me and realized it was… that guy I still hadn’t asked the name of.
“Okay.” Professor Longbottom clapped his hands together, making me look up at him startled. “I’ll just get right to it I guess. You two will help me clean this place up.”
Mister I-have-no-name-but-perfect-grey-eyes wailed. “Cleaning? Aren’t the house elves supposed to do that?”
Professor Longbottom shot him a look that made him shut up and glue his eyes to the floor, squirming uncomfortably under his gaze.
Hah, not so tough as he looked, then.
“Not that type of cleaning. You will clean the plants.”
We gaped at him. Clean the plants? What?
He rolled his eyes at us. “Nice to know you never payed attention in class. You will replace the soil, moist them, remove withered blossoms and repeat until you cleaned every single one. When you’re finished you can go eat.”
Merlin as if we had to take care of babies. A million of them.
I was about to nod my head and get straight to it, when professor Longbottom said the worse thing he could possibly say in a situation like this.
“No wands allowed.”
He reached out a hand and expected us to give it to him. Was he mental? There was NO WAY I was going to give away my wand just like that. Why should I trust him? Just because he was a professor didn’t mean he was trustworthy! In fact, looking back at our history, professors were the once we should especially not trust. *Uhum* Quirrel *uhum*.
“Hand them in.” I switched glances with Grey Eyes and saw him shrug. We had no other chose. And the quicker we handed them in, the quicker we could get the hell out of here. So we did just that.
Professor Longbottom started gathering his things from the tree stump. “I won’t be staying here. I trust you guys will do as I told you.” he smiled and started to stalk away, but I couldn’t just let him leave. I would forever be haunted by that awkward moment if didn’t do something about it.
“Professor.” Having almost reached the door, he turned around to look at me. “I wanted to apologize for… erm, my behavior? I don’t normally… act like that I swear.” Damnit I could feel my face change color, great.
“I understand.” He sighed, as if a ton of weight had lifted itself from his shoulders because of my apology. He’d been feeling at least as uncomfortable as I had. “Just make sure I won’t catch you drunk next time. Same goes for you, Jacob.”
Jacob? As in the Jacob? The one Justin was on about? The one I got a little bit too comfortable with on a drunken Friday night? Please tell me it was not him. Pleas, Merlin, do me this one favor?
I followed professor Longbottom out of the classroom with my eyes and eventually kept staring at the door once he had disappeared. I could not turn around. I could not face that guy. Especially since I didn’t know how friendly it got between us.
“These plants aren’t going to clean themselves, you know.”
I kept staring at the door, eyes wide.
“I might be good with my hands, but that doesn’t mean I’m doing this alone.”
I stayed quiet.
Noticing I wasn’t in the mood to talk, Jacob sighed. “You seemed an awful lot more talkative Friday night.”
I closed my eyes, wishing he’d just shut up.
But of course, he was having none of that. I could hear him sigh again and turn around. “And an awful lot more fun, too.” He muttered.
I balled my fists and turned around, ignoring Jacob completely, I walked to the closest plants I could find and grabbed one of them hazardously without putting the gloves on professor Longbottom had left us.
I felt the pain before I even touched it. A painful stinging sensation travelled across my entire right hand, making me yell out all the bad words in my vocabulary.
Jacob was by my side within a second, a concerned expression on his face. “Well that was fast.”
Clenching my teeth to stop the curse words come out I looked at him, confused.
“Professor Longbottom left literally a minute ago and we already fucked up.”
Despite the horrible pain I was in, I couldn’t help but notice he said ‘we’, as if we were in this together… even though I was being a complete jerk by blocking him out.
“Here, let me help you.” before I could even protest, Jacob grasped my hand delicately and led me to the sink in the back of the class. His fingers were cold, maybe because it was a bit chilly in here, but they felt good against the burning skin of my hand. He let the water come through and positioned my hand under it, letting it cool down.
“Thanks.” I muttered.
“Aha, so it speaks again!” he chuckled.
I rolled my eyes at him and smiled, okay, maybe this bloke was cool. I mean, he didn’t seem like the type I was expecting him to be. He was sweet. If it were Potter who I was here with, he’d probably first laugh his ass off at my stupidity and then, just maybe, help me. If he felt like it.
I shook Potter out of my head and thanked Jacob again when he handed me an ointment he’d found in the emergency cabinet. The palm of my hand was covered in a dozen small, hideous bubbles. I flinched when I applied the lotion but was relieved when I saw the bubbles disappear almost immediately, taking the pain away with them.
“Urtica Diocia.” Jacob muttered. “How did you not know it was Urtica Diocia?” Jacob asked, raising one of his brows.
I raised one of my own in return. “How do you know it’s Urtica Diocia?”
He looked at me with a blank expression on his face, as if it was obvious. Because, sure, remembering the Latin name of a random plant was something everybody did. I even had trouble remembering the English names!
“Third year, professor Longbottom mentioned it once or twice. Remember?”
I laughed at his stunned face. “No I do not. How do you?”
Jacob shrugged and put both of his hands in his robe pockets. And that’s when I noticed it. “You’re in Ravenclaw?”
Right. He was in Ravenclaw. Justin told me.
“You don’t remember?” I shook my head no, an apologetic look on my face. He must think I was pathetic for forgetting everything about Friday night.
Jacob scratched the back of his neck, probably feeling awkward. “Do you even remember anything?”
“I don’t even know how I got here.” I said, shrugging my shoulders. “I mean I know it’s because professor Longbottom caught me drunk and I tried to make pass at him-“ I saw Jacob’s mouth drop (well, I guess he wasn’t there when it happened) and raised my hand to make him stop from asking anything. “but honestly, I don’t know why or how I did it. Or whatever happened that night.”
Jacob crossed his arms over his chest (and I couldn’t help but stare at them, because, you know –hormones) and he narrowed his eyes, looking at me. “Well that’s unfortunate.”
I shifted on my legs, feeling a bit uncomfortable. “How unfortunate exactly?” It wasn’t my intention for it to come out as a whisper… but it did.
“Unfortunate, because now I have to re-introduce myself and you forgot all about your amazing first impression of me.”
I laughed. “I thought Ravenclaws were supposed to be modest?”
He shrugged. “Well that’s some BS. You can’t possibly generalize an entire group of people. And that coming from the girl who is so against gender stereotypes that she took of her top screaming, just to prove her point.”
I cringed and let out a small cry, covering my face with my hands when Jacob started laughing. “I can’t believe you saw that.”
“I know. And even before the first date, that usually never happens.”
Merlin, what have I ever done to deserve this?
“I swear I’m usually not like that. Just don’t get me anywhere near alcohol next time.”
Jacob grinned. “There’ll be a next time?”
And just like that, I felt my face warm up. Was he still even remotely interested in a girl he had seen drunk out of her mind, acting like a complete idiot? I looked up at him. Taking in the sharp but somehow still soft features of his face, I shrugged. “Maybe.”
Jacob’s grin grew wider, and after letting his arms drop back to their sides, he wrapped one of them around my shoulder, dragging me towards a table filled with the plants we still had to clean, as if us being this close to each other was no big deal at all.
“Let’s do this so we can go eat. I will kill someone if I don’t get food in my system anytime soon.”
Now this boy was speaking my language.
I always laughed at my teammates when they told me they couldn’t feel their legs anymore after running one lap around the pitch. Running wasn’t that hard if you had a good condition. And we all had to be in good condition if we wanted to win any games this year. When it came to pushing your body in sports, I always believed that pain was just in your head.
Until today. When bloody Potter decided to almost literally break us by making us run 8 laps around the pitch. Eight. Freaking. Laps. That was far more than 2 miles running non-stop.
Once we had finally finished, everybody collapsed on the ground. I let my body give in to gravity and fell butt-first on the ground, leaning my back against some body part that belonged to Damian. Really, I didn’t care what it was, as long as I could breathe again.
“Alright everyone,” Potter said, still somehow managing to stand on his two legs with no problems whatsoever. “Grab your brooms and let’s get flying.”
Everyone just groaned.
“Come on, stop wasting my time I have better things to do than coach a group of pathetic excuses for athletes.” Potter snapped.
We scrambled back to our feet with difficulty. I could hear Chris curse Potter under his breath and sniggered, trying not to make eye contact with Potter as I walked past him.
“What’s so funny, Martins?”
I was about to retort something stupid like ‘your face’ but held my tong on time. Potter was in a tense mood, and it was crystal clear to all of us. This was the last practice we had before we played against Slytherin . Hence the 8 laps he made us run. He actually put a spell on the ground so that it’d turn into lava every time you slowed down. That’s how stressed out he was. I shouldn’t make it worse, so I just kept my mouth shut and kicked off the ground.
After practice, the team, including myself, sauntered like zombies back to the locker rooms.
“I like watching you play. Proves you can handle balls quite well.” Potter laughed at his own joke and wrapped one of his arms around me. I flinched at his touch. Ugh. This was the last thing I needed right now. I guess he completely forgot about my outburst yesterday. He was back to being a complete tosser.
“I don’t have the energy to deal with you right now, Potter. I need to go take a shower.” I groaned, throwing his arm off of me.
“Perfect, I’ll join you.”
“Not in a million years, Potter. Just bugger off will you?”
I forced my legs to go faster so I could reach the locker room quicker and leave Potter behind. Spencer and Alice were already in the showers when I entered the room. I took of my Quidditch gear and put them in my locker, taking out the clean clothes to wear after, and jumped in the shower.
Aaaah. Who knew a simple shower could be so magical?
I finished showering (I probably used up enough water to sustain a small country… my bad) and pulled on my clothes. My muscles had loosened up, so I could finally walk without it feeling like my body was made out of steel. I felt much better, and the pain had completely disappeared.
I was ready to leave the locker room when I heard a soft, but still audible chuckle. Oh. So I guessed Spencer and Alice hadn’t left yet. I walked in the direction where I heard the chuckle come from, when I suddenly stopped dead in my tracks.
“I mean it’s so fucking obvious she’s only on the team because James wants to shag her.” Spencer’s voice was like a sharp knife stabbing me in the back.
They were talking about me?
“I know,” Alice sighed. “And it’s so bloody annoying. I’m here to play Quidditch, not to watch James fail to catch the girl every time.”
My mouth fell to the floor. Alice? The sweet, innocent Alice agreed with that bint?
“I know right! And what the hell is it about her? I mean yea, sure, I can see why he thinks she’s pretty but she’s not that special. She doesn’t deserve the school’s Golden Boy.” Spencer spat.
“You know what I really think?” Alice asked. “I think that she secretly does want him, I mean… who wouldn’t… but that she doesn’t want to give in because she likes the attention so much. Because let’s face it… once James has done her, he won’t even remember her name.”
“Yea, absolutely!” Spencer let out this super fake laugh, which made the hairs on the back of my neck stand up. “I can’t believe you’ve always thought so too! We should totally hang out sometime.”
Alice giggled. “Yea totally.”
Having had absolutely enough of hearing what nasty things they had to say about me, I turned around, forcing my body to move away from them. And just like that I felt as if I needed another shower. I felt dirty. Even dirtier than after practice. My body did not feel like it was made out of steel anymore, it felt like it’d been dumped in a pool of dog feces and left there to rot.
They hated me. For something that was not even my fault. How could they say such things about me? We were supposed to have each other’s back more than anyone. We were a fucking team. Okay, granted, I barley spoke with them, but, seriously, that did not justify the way they spoke about me. I bald my fists and swallowed the tears that had started to swell up in the back of my throat. I was not going to let them get to me.
This was all Potter’s fault.
A.N: Pfjuuuw! Long chapter, right? Should I make them shorter? Some people don’t like long chapters. Let me know what you think? Shorter chapters or keep the long once? :)
Oh and also, let me know what you think about this story so far. I really really really appreciated you guys’ opinion.
Until next time, lovelies! :)