Status: In very, very, very slow progress


Catching Up

A few seconds later there was a knock on the compartment door. Harry, who was nearest opened the door and stepped back as upon seeing the girl who was standing in the doorway, Vanessa had squealed and leapt up. When the girl saw Vanessa she gave a similar squeal and they both jumped into a long, tight hug.

“Vanessa!! Oh my God!! Aw, it’s great seeing you after the entire summer holidays with only a few short letters!!!”

“Claire!!! Ah, it’s great to see you too! Umm…people, this is my good Ravenclaw friend, Claire Dray.” Vanessa explained.

Claire was medium height with bright, warm, playful turquoise eyes, curly jaw length fair hair and neither pale nor tanned skin. She was wearing an orange top with black lace detail, brown trousers with white embroidery at the cuffs and white and orange Vans.

“Hi,” Claire said, “I saw Malfoy storm out of this compartment like only you can make him and wondered if it was you here or a Weasley twin.”

“Oh. Um, these are my new friends Ron Weasley, Hermione Granger and Harry Potter.” Vanessa replied. Claire gasped and said,

“My God, THE Harry Potter?! Wow, I’m so glad I’m finally meeting you at last!” She received a sharp elbow in the ribs and an eye-roll from Vanessa for that remark.

“Honestly, you treat him like the Dark Wanderer would be treated if anyone ever saw him and knew who he was! He is human, you know!” She sighed.

“Who is this Dark Wanderer person you keep talking about?” Ron asked as Claire sat next to Hermione.

“Well, MCR- My Chemical Romance,” Vanessa explained, “don’t go by their real names, they’ve made up ones, kind of like usernames on a message board. The lead singer and songwriter’s ‘name’ is the Dark Wanderer. Rhythm guitarist is called Beastie Boy, lead guitarist Metal Head, drummer Cat Dude and bassist Pyrotechnic Toaster-Fork. As you can see, they’re way beyond stage names.” She continued.

“Whoa.” Harry mumbled.

“Oh, that reminds me! There’s someone I want you to meet!” Claire cheered happily.

“Good God, woman, will you stop playing cupid and fixing me up with random twats who’re supposedly my type!!! When will you learn; I’m thirteen, I don’t need a boyfriend!”

“Hey, they weren’t that bad! And I had no intention of hooking you up with these guys; they just seem to be nice people who’d get along well with you as friends!” Claire replied. Looking at her watch she added, “We’d better get changed, it’s about that time.”

“Okay then. You coming with us?” Vanessa asked Hermione.

“Sure.” Hermione replied.

Ten minutes later Vanessa was in a cubicle of the washroom; having changed into her school uniform she was gazing into the mirror. The girl looking back at her was pale, with shoulder length darkest brown hair streaked with bright, acid green. She had dark blue eyes, a small nose and thin-ish lips.

Her compulsory Slytherin uniform (a grey jumper, grey skirt, green-and-white tie and black Hogwarts robes with the Slytherin crest on the chest) was kind of baggy – it did not extenuate her slim figure but was not too big for her, and she liked it that way.

One major thing that separated herself and her reflection was that the girl in the mirror looked happy, rather shy, but still, happy, as if there was nothing bothering this girl except maybe a nagging feeling that she’d left a textbook at home. In reality that was not the case. And it had not been since 25/8/06, exactly a week ago.

“Vanessa? You okay in there?” Claire’s voice rang out, interrupting Vanessa’s thoughts.

“Uh, yeah, I was just fiddling with my robes.” Vanessa lied. In truth she had been dwelling on that fateful day…..