Status: Currently being re-edited. Chapters 1-10 have been re-edited.

A Muggle at Hogwarts

Ch. 23: Young Love

It’s strange how much time can change a relationship—how much distance it can create between two people. It’s been a month since the second semester began, and things have already changed dramatically between Draco and me. Other then the little bickering here and there, Draco and I didn’t have much contact with one another. I think it’s to the point in which we would pass one another in the hallway and hardly notice each other.

However, I don’t believe that the feelings we have for one another have disappeared. Or at least I don’t want to believe that they have. I know that I still have feelings for him. No matter how deeply I hide them away, they always surface whenever I see Draco. My heart always leaps just a little bit every time he’s around. His feelings towards me, on the other hand, are something I am uncertain of. I just hope that he still has a place for me somewhere in his heart.

Aside from Draco and me, Harry and I have been spending much more time together—probably to make up for all the time I didn’t spend with him over break. We have resumed our Quidditch practice, although I continue to refuse to ride on a broom. Harry still finds this funny, but he understands. Occasionally, when I build up enough courage, I ride with him on his broom. We never go too high, though.

Speaking of the second semester, Professor Slughorn has returned to Hogwarts as the Potions teacher. Because of this, Snape no longer had to teach Potions and Defense Against the Dark Arts. He seems less stressed out because of this. This is possibly due to the fact that he finally gets the job that he has been constantly applying for. I’m actually quite happy that he’s happy. I mean, as long as he doesn’t smile constantly and skip down the hallways like a bubbly school girl. Then we would have a problem. I would send myself home instantly the moment that happens, but thankfully, it never will.

The morning of Valentine’s Day, Hermione and I walked into the Great Hall to find Harry, Ron and Ginny in the usual spot at the table. As we walked closer, though, we noticed Ginny, Ron and Harry huddled around something.

“Morning,” I smiled as I appeared beside Harry.

“Good morning,” Harry greeted.

“So,” I said as I diverted my eyes to the object on the table, “what is this mysterious item which we are all gawking at?” I asked sarcastically.

“Ah, it’s a rare object that is only seen on special holidays, like today,” Harry replied.

I smiled. “Can you really call Valentine’s Day a holiday?”

“A special occasion, then,” Harry suggested.

“So, who’s the present for?” Hermione questioned as she looked down at the large present on the table.

“It’s for Ron,” Ginny informed with a grin on her face.

“Why haven’t you opened it, Ron?” I asked.

“I’m completely terrified to!” Ron exclaimed. “If I opened it, it would mean I accept it. If she found out that I accepted it, she won’t ever leave me alone!”

“Who’s he talking about?” Hermione asked as she looked at all of us.

“Who else would it be from?” Harry and I replied at the same time.

Harry then turned to look at me with this amused yet astonished look on his face. Slowly, a tiny smile formed on his face.

“I’m assuming it’s from Lavender,” I slowly added while staring back at Harry.

Ginny suddenly cut in and said, “Well I’m curious to see what it is. Aren’t you, Harry?”

Harry spun his head back and stuttered, “W—what? Curious about what?”

“About Lavender’s Valentine’s Day present for Ron,” Ginny informed as she gestured to the scarlet box.

“Oh, yeah!” Harry said nodding. “Of course—I knew that.”

“Let’s just see what the card says,” Hermione said as she reached out and took the card.

“NO!” someone shouted from down the table.

We all immediately turned our heads to where the yell had come from. Apparently, we weren’t the only ones. Everyone was staring at Lavender, who was standing up. Her dark blue eyes stared down the table and at the card that was in Hermione’s hand.

The entire Great Hall went quiet as she hurried down to us. She suddenly snatched the card from Hermione’s hand and leaned down on the table so that she was right across from Ron.

“Won Won!” she exclaimed passionately while staring deeply into Ron’s terrified eyes. She tightly held onto the card in front Ron as she asked, “Why won’t you read my card? I wrote it all by hand!” Not waiting to hear his reply, she opened the card up and read it passionately. “‘My dearest Won Won,'” she said as she glanced up at Ron, “Oh, how I love you so! Despite you not returning my endless letters, I know that you are thinking of me. You are probably writing me an epic letter describing the love you feel for me! I want to return your feelings by giving you this chocolate heart!’” On that note, Lavender threw aside the card and tore open the large present. With a gleeful smile on her face, she pulled out a large chocolate heart in a glass case. Joyous tears filled her eyes as she said, “After you eat this, it will be as through a piece of me is in you,” she said as she reached her hand out and placed it over Ron’s chest. Tears threatened to fall from her eyes as she clutched onto Ron.

Ron stared at Lavender with a horrified expressed placed on his face. Slowly, he turned around from Lavender and stared at us for help. No one knew what to do, though.

“Um…” Ron stuttered as he stood up. He laughed nervously as he gently pulled her hands off of him. Hesitantly, he took the glass case from Lavender with uncontrollably shaking hands. “T—thank you, Lavender. That was—it was—um…unforgettable.”

“Oh, Won Won!” she sighed as she gazed up at him.

He smiled weakly as he said, “I have to go.”

With that, he took the case and ran towards the exit. As he did, the Great Hall burst out in laughter.

“WAIT!” Lavender called as she grabbed the card and stood up on her seat. She waved the card in her hand as she shouted, “WON WON, YOU FORGOT YOUR CARD! WON WON!”

“We should go check on him,” Harry suggested as Ron exited the room.

“Yeah,” Ginny agreed.

The four of us hurried out of the Great Hall after Ron. As we exited, we found him hurrying off down the hallway.

“Ron!” Hermione called. “Wait for us!”

With that, we took off running after him. It wasn’t long before he came to a halt and we reached him.

“Bloody hell, kill me now!” he shouted as he sank to the ground. He gazed blankly into the distance as he said, “She’s going to be the end of me.”

“You’re exaggerating, Ron,” Hermione commented.

“Did you not see what just happened in there?” Ron snapped as he looked up at us. “She’s completely mad!”

“She’s just—“ I began but had to pause to think of the word to describe Lavender.

“Crazy? A lunatic?” Ron suggested.

“No,” Harry cut in. “What Violet means so say is that she’s just—very affectionate towards you. She’s fascinated by you.”

“Yes, exactly!” I agreed.

“But I don’t feel the same way about her!” Ron said. He looked directly at Hermione as he said, “I fancy someone else.”

“Ron,” Hermione whispered.

“I think we should leave these two,” I whispered to Ginny and Harry.

As the three of us turned to leave, we were greeted by an unpleasant presence.

“Hello there,” Cormac McLaggen greeted. “I saw that scene in there, Weasley. That Lavender Brown really fancies you from the looks of it.”

“What do you want McLaggen?” Harry questioned.

“Well, I was actually hoping to talk to Granger—alone,” Cormac replied as he gazed at Hermione.

“Actually,” Ginny said as she slid to Hermione’s side, “Hermione and I have to get going. I have some questions to discuss with her.”

“Right,” Hermione agreed.

Ginny quickly took Hermione’s arm and the two of them hurried off down the hallway. I sighed heavily as I watched them walk away. There was a strong possibility that Ron was going to confess to her. But thanks to Cormac, that obvious didn’t happen.

“Hey, Bell,” Cormac suddenly said.

I turned around and faced Cormac. “Yes?”

“How about you? Could I have a word with you?” Cormac asked with a grin.

“Anything you have to say to her, you can say in front of us,” Ron said as he rose from the ground.

“Okay,” Cormac agreed as he folded his arm over his chest. He held his head up high and proud before saying, “You and me—we’ll go grab a drink sometime.”

“Are you asking her or tell her?” Harry questioned.

Cormac ignored Harry. Instead, he said, “I’ll pick you up tonight at seven.”

“No, I don’t think so,” I replied.

That charming smile on Cormac’s face immediately disappeared when I said this. His face then got red with furry as he asked me to repeat what I just said.

“I said no,” I repeated. “Have the decency to ask, at least. Though I probably would have said no, either way.”

“You—a Muggle—are saying no to me—a charming, young wizard?” Carmac asked as he walked closer to me. “Do you know what you’re saying?”

“I know exactly what I’m saying. I’m saying no to a wizard, who clearly has a narcissistic complex,” I snapped. “Now, if you would excuse us, we would like to grab some breakfast before class begins.”

“Bye,” Harry grinned as we walked pass the dumbfounded Cormac.

Morning classes quickly flew by and before I knew it, third period had ended. As I packed up, I felt as if I was going to black out for a moment.

“Are you all right, Ms. Bell?” Professor Slughorn asked as he hurried to my side. “You look dreadful.”

“No, I’m fine,” I said as I regained myself. “I’ve just been feeling a bit lightheaded today.”

“Okay,” he nodded. “Be careful, all right?”

“Of course,” I smiled as I finished packing by things up.

As I headed out of class, I started in the direction of the Hospital Wing. I wanted to go see Madam Pomfrey and ask her for a tonic or something for my headache. As I walked out of the classroom, though, I noticed Hermione hurrying down the hallway. I looked in the direction in which she was coming from to find Cormac McLaggen struggled through a crowd of people.

“He doesn’t give up, does he?” I whispered to myself. I then turned my heels and headed after Hermione. As I hurried through the crowd of people, I called out Hermione’s name.

She suddenly stopped and looked back. She let out a small sigh of relief as she hurried back to me. Before I could say anything to her, she took my hand and quickly walked off with me. After a while, the two of us came to a stop.

“Are you okay?” Hermione asked panting.

“Am I okay?” I repeated. “I should be asking you that. You look ghastly!”

“I’ve been trying to avoid him since this morning,” Hermione panted as she looked over her shoulders to make sure that he wasn’t following us. “However, he keeps popping up everywhere! It’s like he knows my whole schedule.”

“I wouldn’t be amazed,” I admitted with a slight smile. “That boy is mad for you.”

A smile came onto Hermione’s face. “Good heavens, Violet, you’re starting to sound more British each day. I think you’re even starting to form an accent.”

I laughed. “It’s because I’m around you guys all the time. Because of that, I’ll be the joker of my house once I return.”

“Yes, your parents will wonder where this new-found accent came from,” Hermione smiled.

“Yes, they will,” I agreed. “However, we are not here to discuss the way I speak. So, what’s up?”

“He won’t leave me alone! He keeps wanting to take me out on another date,” she explained.

“Did you tell him that you just wanted to remain friends?”

“I did,” she replied. “But he doesn’t seem to understand that. Every word that comes out of his mouth involves the two of us going out on a date.”

“Tell him directly then—tell him that you two are strictly friends. If he really does like you, he will respect your wishes. If not, tell him you’re going to have to end this relationship with him—permanently.”

“Isn’t that a bit—harsh?” Hermione asked.

“Do you want this to continue forever?” I grinned. “Anyways, I’m sure Harry or Ron told you about what happened after you and Ginny left. After that, I doubt he will bother me again.”

“I don’t know,” Hermione said trailing off at the end.

“You can do it,” I said. “I’ll be there to support you as well if you need me.”

Hermione smiled brightly at this. “Thanks,” she said. “I’ll tell him then. But first, let’s go grab some lunch. Running all day has made me famish.”

“Actually, could we head to the Hospital Wing?” I asked. “I have a killer headache. I want to see if Madam Pomfrey has some kind of tonic or something.”

“Oh, of course,” Hermione replied.

With that, Hermione and I headed to the Hospital Wing. As we turned the corner to the Hospital Wing, I suddenly ran into someone. When I heard Hermione gasp, I thought for sure that it was Cormac. However, when I looked up, I found Draco standing before me.

“Draco,” I gasped.

I noticed him slipping something into his robe pocket before saying, “Watch where you’re going.”

With that, he shoved passed me. As he did, his hand brushed against mine and slipped something to me. I held my breath as my hand wrapped around the paper in my hand. Once he was gone, I recollected myself and quickly slipped the note into my pocket.

“What was that about?” Hermione wondered.

“It’s Draco Malfoy, what do you expect?” I commented.

“Violet,” Hermione whispered. “You don’t have to act like that. I know you—“

“Please don’t,” I begged.

“But you still have feelings for him,” Hermione argued. “You don’t have to torture yourself by pretending you don’t like him.”

I looked away mournfully. “I know. But you said so yourself, this is wrong, and I’m endangering myself.” Before Hermione could say anything, I suddenly said, “You can go back to the Great Hall. I can go from here.”

With that, I hurried off before she could say anything else to me.