Sequel: Thick Smoke
Status: Trying

Through Her Eyes

House Elves Don't Knock Part 2

As soon as she woke up Friday morning, Ophelia got encouragements from many known and unknown students.

"Why is it such a big deal? A kid from Ravenclaw brought me flowers as soon as he saw me in the Entrance Hall." She moaned feeling like attention was not her speciality.

"I think it's nice. They all want you to win."

"So they can also win," Pettigrew said, getting a kick as the response. "It's the truth!"

Ophelia groaned and threw her flowers over the chubby boy before she hit her head on the table. Once, twice and she couldn't a third time because Remus put his hand on her forehead and softened the blow. She turned to look at him and saw that he seemed a lot calmer than the days before.

"If you were good or even average at potions, you could have prepared a Felix Felicis." Sirius threw that into the conversation.

"Liquid Luck." Remus added seeing how she was not responding. She scoffed and raised her head.

"You should have told me about it this whole week not now, hours before the duel."

"When is the duel anyway?" Asked Lily growing quite worried. She was good at that, being worried.

"When his majesty desires," Ophelia replied feeling doomed.

That proved to take a while because Zabini preferred to be in time for every class. It was only after dinner that he sent after her and they all moved in the Clockyard.

"Do the professors know about this?" She asked him, walking in the middle of it.

"Of course not. That's why we have to end it as fast as possible." He said nonchalantly, throwing her a bored look. "Are you prepared, Molley?"

"No. Are you?" She didn't know why she asked that, really.

"No. I don't know your level since you never duelled seriously during club activities."

She could feel Regulus sigh and roll his eyes somewhere in the crowd.

"Well, let's begin shall we?" He asked walking a few feet from her and facing her while raising his wand elegantly.

Thankfully, she remembered to bring hers along or else it would have been awkward. Actually, it was Severus that reminded her during their last class.


It came fast and the light from his wand was blinding.

"Stupefy!" He yelled but she was fast. Her reflexes from when she trained with Rodolphus were still kicking.

"Difendo!" She said quickly. It was not easy, though because Zabini was throwing spell after spell. It was all attack and not much defence.

"Confringo!" He yelled again, almost getting her but she ran from his sight and hid behind a column, almost getting someone else hurt in the process.

"Immobulus!" He screamed again, getting closer but she ran again and someone else got hit. "Let's not make collateral damage, Molley."

"Better him than me!" She shouted in the moment.

Zabini rolled his eyes as he saw her sprint for a corner of the yard that had fewer students in. As soon as she got there she had to both duck from a jet of water before she had to jump to the side from a huge flame.

"God, why do I have to duel him in front of everybody?" She mumbled feeling all the eyes judging every movement.

As she duck again, she heard her father's voice telling her not to disappoint him. It sounded so real that she turned to search for his eyes. While she was preoccupied with her own issues, Zabini crept towards her and hit her with Stupefy again only she turned right in time and protected herself. As soon as she did that, she pointed her wand at him and in the matter of second she mumbled, Depulso. Zabini was thrown a few feet from her and with a lot more power than he expected. She screamed Flipendo! But luckily Zabini used a defending spell as he rose and ran to the side seeing how she was attacking now.

"Bombarda!" He shouted but it didn't even reach her before she literally blew it aside. Zabini frowned as he got closer to her. "Depulso! Expelliarmus!" He shouted and the latter did reach her but she grabbed back her wand in very fast accio movements. It was crazy how fast she was now compared to her usual performance in the club. "You have been slacking during club activities, Molley!"

"For good reasons!" She shouted back in her normal voice.

Severus was watching from the side, next to Lily. None was shocked by Ophelia's agility because both have seen her duel before. Her entire year has been tutored by Spinnard during detention and it was obvious he did a good job. Even so, it was surprising how much she improved by herself.

Rabastan knew it was all Rodolphus' savage training that led Ophelia to be so quick and act while planning at the same time. He couldn't help at that moment but respect his older brother; Ophelia proved to be his best student.

"Lumos!" She shouted suddenly and made such bright light that no one could see the duelists. "Depulso!" She screamed before she also did something that she shouldn't have. With the tip of her wand still enlightening the whole yard too bright to peek inside, she said very, very softy Crucio. Because he couldn't see well, he only deflected the first and did not see the second coming. Zabini's eyes widened as he crashed on the ground, trembling from every corner of his body and blood dripping from his nose. It was painful, incredibly so, and he gave a loud scream that drew gasps from the viewers.

Ophelia heard them too because she ran to his aid and found him barely conscious. Fearing that she might get unwanted attention and Zabini's pride will shatter, she panicked and took an awful decision. While still containing the bright light, she grabbed his wand and closed her eyes as she hit herself with Petrificus Totalus, thus ending the duel. The light diminished gradually and let the viewers see the result. Both duelists were on the ground but Zabini was still moving, unlike petrified Ophelia.


In the end, both had to be sent to the infirmary, one in a worse condition than the other. Ophelia was dismissed in a matter of minutes but she chose to stay the night so it won't look incriminatory.

"What did you hit him with? His scream was loud." Lily asked, being one of the two allowed to stay more with her.

"I can't remember, maybe Immobulus or Confringo. It was a mess." She lied through her teeth.

The other student that was allowed to stay more with her was Remus and he didn't look convinced. One glance was enough to know there was dark magic in what hit Zabini.

"What happened here?!" McGonagall's voice filled the whole space as soon as she entered the hospital wing with Slughorn, Idris and Dumbledore. "Oh my, Molley! And-" her eyes widened when she saw Zabini's wounds. McGonagall glanced at her student as if she knew what happened and there was fear in her eyes. Ophelia was sure she saw it in Slughorn's too.

"Well, I did hear students talking eagerly about a duel between Miss Molley and Mr. Zabini. I'll take it upon myself since I could have stopped it." Idris said leaving the whole room in complete silence. Ophelia was speechless.

"Is that so...?" Dumbledore asked but his eyes were stuck on Ophelia, not Idris. She felt as if she wanted to dig a hole and hide in it because Dumbledore could see past her silence. He could also see guilt which made him smile softly. "In that case you should take responsibility, Idris. Let's leave now and let them rest. I trust their punishment with the heads of their houses."

As the two incredibly tall men left the room, Ophelia felt her heart lighter. That vanished when she turned to look at her professor.

"I can't believe you let yourself be drawn into such a mess Molley. 50 points from Gryffindor and prepare yourself for a week of detention and extra homework for your break." She said and trotted away. Slughorn didn't stay much more and left too but not without throwing a quick look at her hand. The ring was shining proudly on her finger and he knew her father had witnessed it all.

The rest of the school did not figure out the truth. Because Zabini was still moving when the duel ended, yet still hurt, it was vague if he won or it was a tie. Anyway, everyone who placed their bets on Ophelia lost. She got many nasty calls in the corridor, some from Slytherins who were angry that she had the guts to attack their housemate and some by the rest of the school.

"Two days and everyone leaves," Alice said patting her shoulder encouragingly.

"Most of them, not all," Pettigrew added getting another kick under the table. "At least you leave too, right Molley?"

He barely finished his sentence when Willy flew in with the mail. She usually didn't get letters at school but it seemed that was an exception.

As soon as she opened it, she felt like hitting herself with the cruciatus curse too.

Dear Ophelia,

I am disappointed but there is no other choice nor an easy way to put it. You should not come home this break. Believe me, I wish otherwise and I miss you but some things happened. I'm really really sorry. Please enjoy your holidays at school and write me back about what you want for Christmas. I'll make sure you get lots of presents! Say hello to James from me, doodle ooh!


She read to herself as she grasped the parchment tightly.

"I cannot believe this..." she whispered to herself.

One bad thing did not come alone.


Monday came around and Ophelia couldn't believe that she had to say goodbye to her friends in the common room rather than the train. She waved and smiled as if it didn't matter where she'd stay for Christmas...but it did.

Once everyone left, she sighed and sat in front of the fireplace. It was awful.

"Miss would like a cup of cocoa?"

Ophelia sighed with a sour expression when she turned her head and was met by two blue doe eyes, staring at her with the same amount of interest and care as Dobby. It seemed that house elves hardly ever knocked when visiting. Her eyes fell on his hands and she smiled seeing the cocoa he was holding carefully as not to drip.

"Dylis...thank you," she said as she grabbed the mug from him.

Dylis was not like other elves, he was loyal and very formal but he was also picking up certain traits from Cerberus. It was not every day that a house elf would sit down so comfortably.

"Mr. Cerberus knows he saddened you greatly and he is very sorry. But he has no choice, Miss. Miss Ophelia is in grave danger if she goes back. The shadows are lurking around the house." He said as he shuddered at the memory.

"Shadows as in dark wizards?"

"Dementors too. Mr. Cerberus doesn't know why they are acting so."

"It's my father, isn't it? It sounds like something he would do. But why?" She only thought for a moment before she remembered what Dobby said. "He's searching for Peverell, isn't he? For the black kitten."

Dylis nodded as he eyed her carefully.

"Is miss alright? Is miss hurt? Should Dylis bring the-"

"No, no, I'm fine. You should see the other guy." She joked and laughed to herself at the muggle joke. The room fell silent once she remembered her muggle parents and how they were murdered in cold blood. "Is Cerberus safe?"

Dylis nodded with a wide smile. He was very fond of Cerberus.

"Miss shouldn't worry. She'll always be safe." He said with genuine care which touched her deeply. At the same time, she couldn't help but worry for the people around her, the ones her father had no problem hurting.

The beginning of the break was not bad. Almost everyone left. Zabini was kept in the hospital until Wednesday when she saw him move around freely. As soon as he entered the Great Hall he saw her and continued to glance at her every so often while eating. In the end, he came to her and sat next to her.

"You're insane, Molley. But that was one unpredictable duel." He said in a voice that did not sound angry but not happy either. "You should help the students during club activities when they ask. If not, I prefer you don't show yourself at all." He added in a stricter tone.

"I'm sorry I used-"

"Let's meet in the library after dinner. We should talk. I know you want that." He said and went back to his friends. It was interesting seeing him hang out with some Ravenclaws.


Ophelia was a very blunt young girl so as soon as she sat across Zabini, she didn't even care who was around and just asked.

"Can you tell me about your uncle?"

"My uncle? Why do you want to know about him? How do you even know him?"

Ophelia bit her lip and decided she might as well tell the truth in a way.

"I recently came into the possession of a part of an article about a boy that was pushed off from the Astronomy Tower. His name was Zabini."

He seemed to think about it for a moment before he actually started to speak.

"My family doesn't speak about that incident. I don't even know what was his name but I know that my father despised him. They also got very well with the Ministry after that, as a show of respect for Dumbledore's ignorance." Zabini said sounding like he did try to get the same information once before.

"So then, what do you know?" She asked hoping it wasn't all a waste of time.

"I know he had a fight with somebody up there before he died. He was having a quarrel with his boyfriend and they must have gotten pretty fired up. The rest, you probably have read already."

But Ophelia's attention was still stuck on one tiny detail.

"B-Boyfriend? Your uncle was in a relationship with a man?" She stuttered as she said those words out loud.

"Didn't expect that, did you Molley?" He asked smugly, leaning back with a proud expression. "But that's not the reason he was such a disappointment to the family. The problem was the boyfriend's past. They say he was a low-level wizard whose father was a muggle and mother was a-"

"Veela?" She asked already knowing the answer.

"Yes. The Veela part was nice but his muggle father was a murderer. A witch hunter, more exactly. He was from a long line of descendants from Salem. That is why they forced my uncle to break up with him. He probably did and look what happened."

Zabini said all of this very calmly as if it wasn't his family that was so twisted in their beliefs. It was odd how homosexuality was accepted but not having a witch hunter father in law.

"Well, thanks. It definitely put things in perspective." She said hoping she didn't sound too suspicious.

"By the way, Molley, take extra care around Rosier from now on. He is a sick bastard, even with his housemates." Zabini said leaning over the table with a serious look and a glint in his eyes, one that wanted to reach her and tell her exactly how dangerous it was.

"Why?" She asked, her whole demeanour changing.

Seeing how she took the threat, how her whole body became rigid and her eyes lost all life, he sighed and shrugged.

"Maybe you'll be alright. But once Evan takes an interest in something, he usually has to destroy it. Right now, he wants to know your secrets."

"As in who has a crush on you?"

"That's the Littlewood girl, isn't it?" His answer was a faint blush from the brown-haired girl, "I'll repay your duelling skills by going on a date with her. But that's it." He said, seeming like such a nice guy.

Ophelia couldn't help but think it was way too much kindness for one day, maybe even one year, so she quickly walked away to think about Potter. He was going to go nuts when he will find out the truth.