“I swear to Merlin Jesus, if you don’t get your hand off of my pancake, I will rip your throat out!” Melba exclaimed, causing the entire Hufflepuff table to go quiet for a moment before the chatter started again.
Nick frowned at her but pulled his hand away and Melba then took the last pancake on the plate before it filled up again and Nick could grab one himself.
“I told you to stop calling me that.” he muttered. I took a bite of my croissant as I stared at the Gryffindor table. Angelina sat next to Fred with her arm over his shoulder and hiss arm around her back. I felt a sting in my chest and my blood boil. Seeing them together made me so angry. Yes, I was jealous but was that so weird? She stole him from me and he let her. He didn’t love me. He never loved me. If he did, he wouldn’t have cheated.
“Alright, so what’re we thinking?” Nate said. “Are we winning our first match against Ravenclaw or are we winning the first match?”
“We are totally going to win!” Seth cheered and their palms met in the air above the table. “We’ll win against them all. We start with Ravenclaw in November, then we beat Gryffindor in March and lastly we are going to absolutely smash it when we play against Slytherin in April!”
“Don’t be so cocky.” it came from Cedric who sat a few spots further down the table. We all looked at him as he reached for some bacon. “We lost two of the games last year so if you really want to win more thisyear, you have to put in the work.”
“What do you mean, Ceddie?” Seth asked with a playful grin and I couldn’t help but snicker at the choice of nickname. “We always work so hard at practice.”
“Sure.” Cedric nodded slowly. “Let’s go with that.”
Seth turned towards the rest of us. “We work hard, right?”
“I work hard.” Melba said. “Jules works hard. The rest of you... nah.”
“What do you mean by nah?” Callie scoffed. “I work hard too.”
“You know what?” Melba smiled. “You do. You’re right. You do work hard. Hard with your tongue down Nate’s throat.”
Nate broke into laughter, quickly clamping a hand over his mouth and a small smile appeared on my face. I loved my friends so much. Especially with comments like that. They always made me happy. They made me forget about my heartbreak. Sometimes I was reminded but other times, I’d laugh with my friends and all my worries would disappear.
“You’re such a meanie.” Callie said and reached over the table to shove Melba in the shoulder. “Such a meanie.”
“I know I am.” Melba responded. “But I’m allowed to be. I’m gay.”
“Okay you can’t use that every time you try and defend yourself.” I said with a smile as I took another bite off my croissant.
“Yes I can.” she argued. “I can... because I’m gay.”
“Wow, here we go again.” Seth spoke as a faint chuckle rolled off his tongue. He shook his head at Melba before he ate the last piece of his pancake.
My eyes flicked back to where Fred sat but this time he was looking back at me from over his shoulders. Our eyes met and I quickly looked down, picking up my glass of pumpkin juice and took a sip. When I looked at him again, he had turned back around and was in some deep conversation with Angelina where they smiled, laughed and looked oh so fucking adorable.
“You know what?” I asked. “I cannot wait for Quidditch practice to start. We need to beat Gryffindor in March.”
“That’s the spirit!” Seth smiled. “We are totally going to win if you use that anger in the pitch.”
I didn’t respond. I looked towards the Gryffindor table and my blood started boiling again at the sight of Fred and Angelina. I was starting to get uneasy, bouncing my leg as I tapped my nails against the table. “I can’t do this.”
“Can’t do what?” Callie asked from next to me.
“Sit here.” I breathed. “They are being so oblivious about their love. As if no one can fucking see them.”
“And she’s swearing.” Nick spoke, putting down his fork. “Just don’t look at them.”
“Just don’t look at them.” I scoffed. “It’s not that easy.”
I stood up but Callie quickly grabbed my arm and pulled me down to sit on the bench again. “You can’t leave. You know the rules. During feasts, breakfast and dinner, you have to stay seated until the meal hours are over.”
“I know but I–”
“You’re a prefect and you were just appointed head girl.” Melba said. “You can’t disobey the rules when you’re responsible of people following them.”
“Just what, Nate?” I snapped. “I get that he cheated. I get that he’s happy now or whatever but does he have to rub it in my face?”
“Ignore him. Ignore them.” Callie told me. “Eat your croissant and act like you don’t give a fuck about him. I know you do and I know it’s hard to get over but just try.”
“Okay.” I held up my hands in surrender. “Fine. But I swear to god. If I ever catch them snogging in the hallways, I don’t care about my head girl duties. I’ll stab them both right in the back just like he stabbed me in mine.”
“Are we all just going to ignore the fact that our best friend over here is being all murderous?” Nick suddenly asked, gesturing towards me. “That she’s been talking about killing her ex like twice already?”
“Nick.” Melba sighed. “Now would be a good time for you to shut up before you add to the anger she’s feeling right now.”
“Anger?” I asked. “I don’t feel any anger. I’m fine.”
“Yeah, sure.” Melba nodded slowly before she cut her pancake in half and placed one of the halves on my plate. “Here. Take some of my pancake.”
Our four friends gasped dramatically at her action but she ignored them and smiled sweetly at me, gesturing towards the half pancake on my plate. “Eat it, Jules. Pancakes always comfort me when I’m feeling down.”
“Who are you and what have you done to Melbourne Striker?” Seth asked, looking at her with wide eyes.
“Ew, don’t call me by that ridiculous name.” she objected, her nose scrunching up in disgust. “It’s Melba, not fucking Melbourne you fucking bitch.”
“And now we angered the demon.” Seth sighed. “Sorry. I obviously meant to call you Melba.”
“Did you, Stephen?”
“Alright. There is no need for that. At least I changed my name legally, meaning Stephen isn’t my name anymore. Melbourne is still yours.” he argued.
Well, at least my name’s actually Julie and they don’t have anything to call me to piss me up. The nicknames they have for me is Jules and J and I don’t have anything against those but Seth hates when we call him by his former first name Stephen. Melba hates when we call her by her real name Melbourne and Nick hates when we call him Jesus.
What kind of weird friend group is this? Callie isn’t a Callie either, though she doesn’t hate her name. It’s just easier to say Callie than Calliope and Nate is obviously Nathaniel but he doesn’t hate that either. Again, it’s just easier to shorten it to Nate.
“Finish up your meals!” Professor Dumbledore suddenly announced, making the entire Great Hall quiet. “And get back to your common rooms for the night.”
“That’s my cue to leave!” I said cheerfully before I quickly got up and left the Great Hall along with some other students. Almost right away, I could sense someone behind me. Someone with large steps and I knew who it was.
Didn’t he get enough in rubbing his new relationship in my face? Did he have to fucking follow me? I tensed my jaw as I hurried up my pace but he caught up with me only seconds later. Him and his long legs.
Don’t answer him.
I let out a heavy breath before I bit onto my tongue to ignore him the best I could, but it was fucking difficult. He was walking so close to me and in the pace we were walking, his scent was being pushed right into my face. His fucking scent.
The strong scent of vanilla hit my voice. The same vanilla from the shampoo and conditioner he used, mixed with the cologne he used. It was this cheap cologne that smelled fucking amazing. It smelled like French apple and royal pineapple.
“I need to talk to you.” Fred said but I continued to ignore him. “Julie.”
“Don’t call me that!” I snapped as I stopped dead in my tracks. He took another step before he could process that I had stopped walking and I looked up at him as he turned around to face me. “You don’t get to call me that.”
“What do you want?” I interrupted him. “Go back to your girlfriend and leave me alone.”
I tried pushing him away but he grabbed onto both of my arms and in response, I pushed him up against the wall, keeping my hands against his chest as his hands were still wrapped around my wrists.
“What do you want from me?” I asked. “To rub it in my face? Do you know how pathetic you made me look? You cheated on your Hufflepuff girlfriend with one of your fellow Gryffindor housemates who by the way is also on the same Quidditch team as you. I mean, it was expected. Everyone were probably waiting for it to happen.”
He didn’t let go of my wrists, meaning I couldn’t move my hands so they stayed flat against his chest and it made me absolutely crazy. My eyes flickered from his face and down to the fabric of his uniform jumper. He smelled so good. I hated this. Hated that I stood this close to him. Hated that I could no longer kiss him whenever I wanted.
“I wanted to apologise.”
“You’ve already done that.” I said. “It means nothing, Fred. You can apologise all you fucking want but it means nothing without a proper explanation.”
“I want to give that to you.” he sighed. “But there is no explanation for cheating. I wish I had never done it though.”
“Sure you do.” I fake pouted and looked up at him again. “If you didn’t cheat, you would still be unhappy with me. You wouldn’t be with the girl of your dreams. Angelina Johnson. Isn’t that right, Freddie? ’Cause you wouldn’t have the balls to end things with me, no matter how unhappy you were.”
He didn’t respond. He gulped harshly and my knees almost gave in when I saw his Adam’s apple bop. Instead, he let go of my wrists and I pushed him once in the chest before stepping away, then turning back around and continuing towards the dungeon.
I tried to remain calm as I tapped the bricks in the stonewall in the rhythm as Helga Hufflepuff. I got it wrong, causing me to sigh and take a moment to collect myself. If I got it wrong too many times, it would spray vinegar on me and I didn’t feel like having to clean these robes right now, seeing as I just changed into them on the train.
I tried again and luckily, I got it right. The door opened for me and I entered the common room that was full of chatter. Our new first year students were so excited, exploring the room as it was their first time in here. Some second year students were being not so nice. Well, they were being kids and I remember when I was twelve and started my second year. I thought I was so cool, through I was so shy to show it to anyone but my best friends. I also remember just being so terrified of the seventh year students. I mean, they were so much older and almost adults, working to get out of school and into the rest of their lives. Hard to believe that I’m now one of the students I once feared
“Boo!” a voice rang in my ear as two hands were placed on my shoulders and a high-pitched scream immediately left my lungs as my knees gave in and I dropped to my knees in fear. I sighed and closed my eyes as I realised who it was. While students froze at the sound of my scream, the room filled with laughter from my five friends. I tilted my head back and looked up at Nate who had been the one to scare me.
“You can’t do that to me.” I breathed. “Shit, I thought I was having a heart attack.”
“That was fun!” Nick laughed. “You should’ve seen your face.”
Meanwhile, Melba walked to the table, laughing softly. She looked through the many envelopes to find ours and threw one my way. It hit me before it dropped to the floor. I grabbed it, then pulled myself to my feet, walking around to let myself plump onto the sofa.
Seth let himself drop down next to me once he got his envelope and our friend group was silent for a moment as we all opened our envelopes to see this year’s schedules. We had build them together ourselves with help from our head of house, Professor Sprout but we still opened them together to what classes we had together. Most of our classes were the same as last year, meaning we probably had a lot of classes together.
“You’ve got to be shitting me.” Nate spoke. “Now we have to listen to Jules complain all five days of the week.”
“What?” I asked and looked at him as I pulled my own schedule out. My eyes flicked to the piece of parchment in my hand and I groaned when I read the words on the top of the schedule. “Gryffindor and Hufflepuff have lessons together this year? What kind of crap is that?!”
“And there we go.” Nate nodded. “Listen. We’ll just sit as far away from Fred as possible.”
“Heck yeah we will!” Seth agreed. “And if I just as much as catch him looking, I will personally smash his head in.”
“You do realise he’s half a feet taller than you, right?” Melba asked. “Both he and George are tall as fuck. They’re literally an entire feet taller than Jules over there.”
“Actually.” I protested, holding up a hand to get their attention. “They’re only thirty centimetres taller than me if we need to be precise about this and there are thirty point five centimetres in a feet.”
All looked at me as if I was dumb and I frowned in response, shaking my head a bit as I looked back down at my schedule.
“I’m very sorry.” Melba said, her tone full of sarcasm. “I was a half centimetre off. My point is that they are so tall that you reach their shoulders and you, Seth. You reach their necks. There is no way you’d be able to smash Fred’s head in.”
“Plus, he’s way too handsome for that.” Callie said, causing me to glance at her.
“Can we please not talk about how handsome my ex is?”
“What? She’s right.” Nick told me as he sat down on the armrest of the sofa. “Fred is very handsome. So is George... seeing as they are identical twins.”
“You’re so dumb.” Nate told him, pushing him which caused him to fall to the floor with a band and the rest of us broke into a laughter that filled the entire common room. Nick got up and scoffed at us before grabbing his schedule and disappearing into one of the underground tunnels that led from the common room to the boys dormitories.
“I should probably go too.” Nate said as he stood up before then leaning down over the chair where Callie sat and the rest of us watched sweetly as they shared a kiss. “Night babe.”
“Night night.” she replied before he walked past the sofa with a smile and as he approached the boys dormitories, he turned around and held up his two middle fingers.