Status: active

The Eighth Horcrux

The date.

Alex crossed her arms and continued to pout. A line of students trailed through the corridors, and there was no foreseeable end in sight. Malfoy stood next to her, holding a stack of papers. For some unknown reason, Malfoy volunteered them to collect Hogsmeade permission slips that morning. They’d been at it for over an hour, and it seemed they were never going to finish. She was supposed to meet Derek in 10 minutes, and she expected there was no way she’d be there in time. Malfoy looked relatively pleased with the situation. Obviously he and Pansy didn’t have any date plans. Which wasn’t very surprising considering he’d spent the last five Saturdays doing who knows what for Snape.

“Can I go now,” Alex asked for the third time. Malfoy glanced at her through the corner of his eye. She made sure to look as displeased as possible. He laughed. Apparently he found her pain amusing.

“I’m mentoring you,” he said, taking the next kid’s permission slip. He brought it to eye-level, examining the signature before adding it to the pile. “You’re good.”

The third-year smiled widely and ran off to join his friends. Alex couldn’t help but feel jealous. That was supposed to be her, running off into Derek’s arms.

“It doesn’t take an Auror to collect permission slips.” Alex said, rolling her eyes.

“Why are you in such a hurry to get to Hogsmeade? It hasn’t changed since last year.”

She shrugged. “Maybe I just don’t want to be around you.”

Malfoy furrowed his brow. Her excuse wasn’t very farfetched. They hadn’t seen a lot of each other in the past week; not since the bathroom incident. It wasn’t necessarily on purpose, Alex had been busy with school, and hanging out with Fiona and Derek. Malfoy hadn’t exactly come looking for her, either.

“We both know that’s a lie. I’m a delight to be around.”

“Did Pansy tell you that? You know you really shouldn’t listen to her. She’s not all there, if you know what I mean.” Alex knew she was being unnecessarily nasty but she didn’t care. She’d been looking forward to today all week and Malfoy was ruining it.

“Leave her out of this.” Malfoy said, slightly irritated, but Alex didn’t care. “Tell me the truth and I’ll let you leave.”

She pressed her lips in a tight line, chewing over whether or not to tell him about her date. She didn’t really have a reason not to, he was supposed to be her friend after all.

“I’m meeting some friends.” This wasn’t a lie. Derek asked yesterday if she had a friend she could bring on their date. Apparently, his mate guilt him into an invite, and to avoid any awkwardness, asked Derek to find him a date as well. Fiona was Alex’s only option, and she had to promise to play Keeper for her a half-dozen times in order to get her to agree.

“Mitchel?” He asked, and Alex nodded, biting the inside of her cheek. “And?”

“Derek and Lucas Flint.”

Malfoy smirked. “So he is your boyfriend?”

Alex shook her head. “I didn’t say that.”

“Well it sounds like he’s your boyfriend.”

“Why do you even care if he’s my boyfriend or not?” She quipped, shooting him a look. She was tired of him constantly evaluating her relationship status. It was none of his business.

“I don’t care.” Malfoy said with a shrug. “It’s just pointless to lie. Are you ashamed of him?”

“No,” Alex exclaimed, gaining a few stares. She didn’t need to explain herself to him. “Can I go now?”

“Fine,” Malfoy said, causing Alex to practically jump out of her skin from excitement. Just as she started to hurry away, she was sure she heard Malfoy shout after her, “Have fun with your boyfriend!”

Alex quickly made her way to the common room where she was supposed to meet Fiona, Derek, and Lucas 20 minutes ago. As soon as she opened the door, Fiona practically wrestled her to the floor. Alex did her best to push her off, but Fiona had the strength of a grown man.

“Get off me,” Alex exclaimed, punching Fiona in the gut. She was sure this ended up hurting her hand more than Fiona.

“You’re lucky I don’t murder you right now.” She said, finally releasing Alex.

“So I’m a little late-”

“That is so not the problem,” Fiona said, throwing her hands up dramatically. “You’ve set me up with Lucas Flint!”

Alex bit the inside of her cheek. Sure, she knew Fiona wouldn’t like the idea of her date being Flint, but she didn’t think she’d react this badly. She knew it would be bad, but not life-threatening bad.

“I don’t see what the problem is-”

“Of course you don’t! You’re dating the most attractive boy in our year and have a side fling with Malfoy!”

Alex wanted to scream. She was so tired of people making assumptions about her love life. A love life that didn’t even exist.

“Malfoy and I are not a thing,” Alex said with as much assertiveness as she could muster. “And stop being so dramatic. You don’t even know him.”

“His brother is Marcus Flint! Marcus Flint. You know, the seventh year that hit on us when we were first years?”

Alex rolled her eyes. Derek and Lucas were sitting in armchairs across the room, their eyes glued to her and Fiona. She knew it wouldn’t be long before they walked over, so she needed to do whatever she could to fix the situation fast.

“Lucas is nothing like his brother.” Alex insisted. “And you’ve already agreed to come, so you can’t cancel now, or I will never forgive you.”

“Fine,” Fiona said, exhaling dramatically. Derek and Lucas were out of their chairs now and beginning to make their way towards them. “But you owe me extra practice sessions. Whenever I want.”

Alex didn’t have time to argue so she quickly agreed with a nod of her head, just as the boys approached. She quickly put a smile on her face.

“Hey,” Alex said, reaching to hug Derek. He smelt really good, like spice and musk.

“Hey,” he whispered in her ear before releasing her. “Are we ready to go?”

Alex shot Fiona a look that suggested sarcastic comments were not welcome before replying, “Yes, let’s go.”

To prevent any outbursts from Fiona, Alex suggested they go to the Three Broomsticks over Madam Puddifoots. Neither of the boys opposed, unsurprisingly. They were able to find a table in the corner of the pub that was out of the way and less noisy. Fiona refused to sit next to Lucas in fear that he would ‘try to make a move’ on her. Alex didn’t care. She just wanted things to go as smoothly as possible.

Alex wasn’t sure why she was trying so hard to impress Derek. It wasn’t like they hadn’t been spending majority of their past few nights together patrolling corridors or their free periods studying in the library. They were already comfortable with each other, but today felt like something else. Today would decide whether or not this thing they had would progress into something more or stay the same. She wasn’t exactly sure which she wanted, so she needed today to go well so she could figure it out.

“Malfoy had you collecting permission forms this morning?” Derek asked, taking a sip from his butterbeer.

“Unfortunately. I’m sure his girlfriend talked him into it.”

Fiona raised a brow. “Do I detect jealousy?” She whispered. Alex smacked her in the side.

“So, Fiona, how’s the Quidditch team looking this year?” Lucas asked, looking at Fiona like she was the most beautiful girl in the world. It was kind of sweet.

Fiona grabbed a fistful of peanuts before replying. “Now that Potter’s AWOL we’re a shoe-in to win the Quidditch cup.”

“Wicked.” Lucas said, his eyes never leaving Fiona. She seemed like she couldn’t care less. “I always wanted to try out for the team. I’m a pretty decent Chaser.”

“Like your brother,” Fiona said, looking at Alex as if to say ‘I told you so’.

“Maybe you can two can practice together!” Alex said. This time Fiona smacked her in the side.

The four of them talked over butterbeers for over an hour. Fiona was actually enjoying herself. She and Lucas actually had a lot in common. They were both huge fans of the Holyhead Harpies, fascinated by training dragons, and premier members of Zonko’s Joke Shop.

Halfway through his second butterbeer, Derek reached under the table to hold Alex’s hand. His thumb traced over her skin, causing her stomach to do flips. He made her happy, which kind-of freaked her out. Fiona was her only friend for a reason. She didn’t trust people easily. She didn’t let people in.

They stayed another hour before finally deciding to head back. Everyone had a lot of homework to catch up on; O.W.L. year was definitely not lacking in course work. Fiona and Lucas walked ahead. Fiona was talking a mile-a-minute about Quidditch strategies and all kinds of nonsense Alex couldn’t begin to understand. Lucky for her, with Lucas around, she didn’t even need to pretend to.

“Sorry…about him,” Derek said, nodding towards his friend. Alex shrugged.

“Don’t be. I’m having a lot of fun.” Alex said, squeezing his hand. It was true, she really was having a good time. It was so easy to be with him.

“Good,” Derek said, smiling widely. “But maybe, next time, we can be alone?”

“We’re alone all the time,” Alex said, which was true. Recently, they’d been spending a lot of alone time together. Granted, most of those times were in the library, and one of them was spent catching slugs, but they had technically been alone.

He laughed before coming to a stop. Alex did the same, looking up at him with confusion. Without saying a word he grabbed her face in his hands and kissed her hard on the mouth. At first, she was caught off guard, but quickly melted into him, standing on her tiptoes to deepen the kiss. Seconds later, they separated, and Alex couldn’t stop smiling.

“That’s what I meant by alone.” Derek said, leaning to kiss her forehead.

“Well, in that case, we can be alone as much as you want.”
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I'm really excited for the next part, so don't be surprised if there's another quick update in your future! I know the story is skipping ahead rather quickly, but the REAL story doesn't really start until Christmas time, so this is mostly background information. Please let me know what you think! I really appreciate feedback! :)