Please, for the love of Merlin, go see my Background before you send me any stupid questions.
Attention all males; if you dare step anywhere near my angel Karson Paisley and try to make a move on her, that will be the last thing you'll have ever done. Don't even think about it.
Rie’s smile faded as Draco explained that his father had prevented him from sending an Owl to anyone, even Karson. “I’m…sorry to hear that.” Her voice was soft and she crossed her legs, allowing her fingers to lace together on top of the table. Draco’s family was a touchy subject, and she only knew bits and pieces of what he actually had to endure; Rie’s eyes averted down at the small paper crane he had finished folding. It wasn’t a secret that Lucius was a cruel and horrible man.
Rie pulled her wand out and let the tip gently graze the crane as she murmured a charm, and the small white wings began to flap as it ascended up to twirl around Draco’s head. As he spoke the second time, her eyes snapped back up at him, showing a little more of the glimmer of amusement she had worn when previously sitting down.
Rie began to laugh as Draco forced out choked sobs, and she shook her head a little. “You know I’m capable myself at potions I just need that extra little boost, especially after one of your little friends got me off on the wrong foot with Slughorn.” Rie’s eyes rolled as she remembered short duel she and Nott had engaged in, as well as their questionable detention sentence. “You know I’m not using you at all really, this is just compensation for that Divinity paper I forged for you last year. It’s practically impossible to pull off cheated work over a clairvoyant, even one as batty as Trelawney. Especially with Umbridge around.” She added in that last part as the winning blow, biting down on her bottom lip hopefully.
Shrugging, Draco ran a lazy hand through his hair, tugging gently. ”It’s fine, really. I’m used to his shit, and at least I had Theo to keep me company,” he sighed heavily, thinking over his summer and how uneventful it was thanks to Father. There was no secret that he was on the outs with his family, more specifically his father, though that should probably be something that needed to be kept more quiet. Details weren’t necessary among the gossip of Hogwarts, the bits of chatter spreading surely out through the wizarding world slowly, since the Malfoys were a very well known family. People knew there was some sort of conflict, making Draco and Narcissa behave differently around Lucius and act out more, though had no idea of exactly what it is, not knowing it was how they’d been treated all these years, how Lucius lead a terrible, worse life that made him a horrible person. ”I just wished I had gotten to talk to someone else, like Kar, or you. Someone who was a breath of fresh air.” Sighing again, Draco shook his head slightly, trying to push the negative thoughts out of his mind.
He cracked a smile when she charmed the tiny crane, watching it flutter softly around his head with eyes full of mirth. Reaching up, he let it land on the tip of his finger and bringing it down to his eye level as its wings slowed their flapping. The miniature bird seemed to be watching him, the corner of Draco’s lips twitching into a larger smile as it fluttered off his fingers and was sent off in Rie’s direction. He watched with a bemused expression as it slowly circled her head before flying in a random pattern around them, falling and rising occasionally. He’d always been a bit amazed with the most random, tiny things in life. With little bits of parchment and a silent charm he would have miniature birds flying about, frogs hopping along, along with various other animals. He’d even learned how to charm a piece to start looking like a simple seed and with a single word, bloom into a beautiful flower in the palm of your hand, though the magic was more complicated.
Draco chuckled alongside Rie, remembering how Theo had mentioned having gotten into a small tiff with the girl. He found it so far beyond amusing how much the two disliked each other, not offering either any input on the other as to stay out of the way of them. The space between them was a war zone he wasn’t willing to enter, instead playing Switzerland and being friends with both. ”You two should learn how to play nice. The nicer, the better.” The smirk Draco donned during the quip left as soon as it came, reminded of the fiasco of last year. She was right, he owed her big time, considering that paper wasn’t exactly a small assignment and it was damn near impossible to pull off. ”Fine, fine, I suppose I’ll work with you. As long as I’m not doing all the work.”
I like your new tattoo, Love Bug. It’s amazing. :)
Justin appreciated Draco’s offering to listen to his problems. It made him wonder if he should actually tell. Could he divulge into all of his secrets? Could he show the Slytherin boy just how unhappy the seemingly positive boy really was? No, he decided, he could not. It was much easier this way, going on with the smile on his face as if nothing was wrong. After all, most times, he was fine. There was just a rare occasion, when he thought of home, that he slipped back into the sadness he had hoped to leave behind.
So he shook his head as he plastered the smile back on his face, “Well, thanks for offering Draco. But really, I’m okay. Parents are just up to their usual squabbles, like all parents do sometimes. It was just upsetting Marco is all, and I’m worried about him.”
It wasn’t a full lie, just a half-truth. A way for him not to feel guilty for lying, but to also hot have shared everything and given himself away. He was afraid that if he told people what really went on in his mind, they wouldn’t want to talk to him anymore. The only person who really knew all of the boy’s dark secrets was Ernie, and that was simply because the pair were roommates, and he was forced to see how Justin reacted to the dark…..
Justin blew some fringe out of his hair, “So anything new and exciting happen since you came back?”
Draco watched the Hufflepuff intently, noticing the little hesitation and flash of no smile at all that indicated he was hiding something. He wasn’t one to push others unless he was close to them, like Karson and Theo, though he knew when to tread lightly for them as well. It was obvious that Justin wasn’t going to talk about it, and Draco chose not to press the topic as much. ”Maybe you could somehow get Marco and take him on a trip to Hogsmeade or something? Reckon if you got it okay’d by Dumbledore, he’d even let you bring him to the castle.” He wasn’t sure if his suggestion was great, whether Dumbledore would even consider such things, but he knew how much Justin loved his brother, and he figured it might be comforting to know that he had the possibility of seeing him soon and helping him out of whatever was going on at home.
Shrugging slightly, Draco huffed and leaned back against the wall behind him. ”Nothing really has happened. I’ve just been hanging around with Theo, which is nothing different from summer. I also caught up with Karson.” He really couldn’t help but smile when he thought of his girlfriend, happy to be back in contact with her after the long few months of summer. ”What about you?”
Justing rolled his eyes and smiled. He didn’t understand how people couldn’t be excited to get on with their days. He would understand, of course, if perhaps they were back at home, or they had miserable lives. But this was Hogwarts, possibly the most magical and wonderful place on Earth. Or perhaps he was just overly excited about the whole idea of the school of magic because he was Muggle-born. He always forgot that some people had grown up around magic their whole lives, like Draco.
“I’m doing pretty good. I’m just happy to be back, honestly. Home’s pretty messy right now…” he let his voice trail off and he scratched at the back of his head. He didn’t want to talk about the divorce his parents were currently in the middle of. No, things were not very good at home right now, which was why Justin was feeling a little bit selfish for being able to get away to Hogwarts, when Marco was stuck at home, suffering the blunt force of their father. But Justin didn’t want to think about that, it was going to spoil his mood.
“But other than that, I’m feeling fantastic!”
Draco furrowed his brow at the mention of home for Justin, recalling the lad’s younger brother that he was so fond of. He’d seen pictures - Muggle ones that didn’t move, which really, who could live like that? - and he admitted, the kid was adorable. Plus all of the stories the Hufflepuff loved to tell, he himself had grown fond of hearing about the boy, even without having met him. ”Do you need to talk about it?” he drawled, cocking an eyebrow and giving what he hoped was a friendly smile, though at this time of morning, many had described his ‘smiles’ as more ‘looks of you bearing your teeth and smelling something rather unpleasant’.
Really, he was willing to listen to Justin all he needed to. He knew what it was like coming from an unhappy home life, and there was always the possibility that he could offer the hyperactive lad some advice if needed. The Hufflepuff tended to keep a cheery persona no matter what, making Draco wonder what really went on in his mind and wonder just how okay he really was. Nibbling on the inside of his lip, he looked over the boy with a somewhat worried expression, sighing softly. ”I’m hear to listen, if you want.”
Rie’s eyes lingered on the cover of Draco’s Defense Against the Dark Arts book. She knew a storm was brewing between Harry Potter and the Dark Lord, and she knew they would all be forced to choose sides at one point or another. Her fingers twitched nervously and she cleared her throat, her eyes taking a bright disposition as she sat down. “Do I actually need a reason?” She joked, mocking a look of disbelief. “Well then, in that case I choose to dote upon the fact that you haven’t sent me an Owl all summer. Which was really the only thing I’d requested that you do.”
Memories of their last departure before the school ends and a ‘You’d better send me an Owl, Draco!’ flooded her memory for a split moment, and she smiled a little as she shook her head. “Surely it’s because they were all going to your beautiful girlfriend, right?” Rie batted a friendly wink at Draco. The way he got flustered around Karson, merlin, just the way he looked at Karson, made Rie grin.
Draco was a good person, there was no doubt about that. He had suffered a rough past with difficult forks in the road, but he’d managed to overcome most all of it. And Karson was the icing on the cake, she was beautiful and nice, she really did bring out the best in him.
“Anyways, I suppose there is a real reason I’ve come to you. Slughorn has assigned us a long term project already, a brew of the Polyjuice Potion. I think it takes…at least a month to brew. He’s allowing us to work in partners and…well I’m afraid I’ve already gotten on his…well I don’t even think he has a bad side…” Rie shook her head as she began to ramble. “He’s a bit skeptical of me, that’s all. I just need a good grade on this to sort of set the record straight.” Her eyes looked at him pleadingly. “Will you be my partner?” She gave him a cheesy hopeful smile.
Draco had opened his mouth to explain the problem with his Owls over the summer, but then she had to go an mention Karson. He couldn’t help but shut his mouth and smile sheepishly, feeling a blush rise up and tint his cheeks as he adverted his eyes. His teeth sunk into his bottom lip for a moment before he sank back into reality, clearing his throat and turning back to his friend. ”I was going to send an Owl, I swear, Rie.” Hands seemed magnetized to each other, his thumbs fiddling around each other as he looked down at them, the smile from before disappearing just as quickly as it came. ”But, uh, Father- he didn’t want me sending anything, to anyone. Especially Kar,” one hand had found a miniature piece of paper, his tongue sticking out of the side of his mouth momentarily as he folded it into a small bird. The corners of his lips twitched into the smallest of smiles as he set it down in front of him, proud of how well it turned out. (He had a habit of making little creatures and things from paper, most being birds that he charmed into flying about his head. There was a little parchment frog in his trunk that he’d charmed to act just like Apollo, the little critter keeping him company after his small frog was killed cruelly by Father.)
Once he heard her reasoning, the small smile became a smirk, Draco shooting side glances at Rie. Most of his friends knew he had a thing for Potions, some natural talent helping the fact that it was the most simple thing he had to learn yet in his academic career. ”So what you’re saying is that you want to use me to get yourself a good grade?” Turning to her, he feigned shock, plastering a palm flat against his chest and gaping at her. ”I, for one, am appalled that you think that’s all I’m good for. I’ll let you know I’m not just some piece of man who’s only object in life is to complete every potion known to man!” he teased, turning his nose up at her and faux-choking on sobs.
Hermione tried relaxing her posture and lifting her nose into the air, letting her arms sway at her sides. She felt like a fool. She tried shaking out her braid and running her hands through her hair, as if it would give her a more ‘messy’ look. It didn’t work. Nearly stamping her foot in frustration, Hermione’s lips twisted into a pout and she paused in front of an open window, her eyes running over patches of the darkness filled with who knew what. It took a great deal of effort to take a deep breath as if it would automatically unwound the knot of anxiety forming in her chest.
Why was it so difficult to just go with the flow? Because…because she was Hermione Granger and that was never how she went about things. Never in her life did she ever think about how easily stressed out she could become in a split second. It bothered her more than she let on to anyone else. Her slender fingers traced the smooth stone outlines along the window sill and they were extraordinarily pale in the moonlight. Setting her mouth into a firm line of determination, Hermione’s hand dropped to her side just as she heard someone speak behind her, causing her to jump in fright.
“Draco.” she pressed both hands over her rapidly beating heart and shook her head with a shaky smile of relief. “Don’t you know to never sneak up on a girl like me? I could have died.” Hermione pulled her hair back into a side bun and leaned her back against the wall. “I was just on a walk. You’re not the only one willing to break curfew, you know.”
Chuckling at the distressed girl, Draco pushed off the wall and sauntered over to her slowly, the calmness in his walk almost mocking the frazzled feeling of Hermione’s just seconds earlier. Looking her over, he could tell she was trying to keep a calm air about her, but something deeper was… confused, was it? His brow furrowed as he tried to figure it out, though letting his cool voice flow out in the empty air around them. ”I hardly snuck up on you, Herman. And besides, I would have kept you from dying.” He winked to accentuate his light tone, still smirking as he settled against the wall next to her, hands still stuffed deep within his pockets.
In all reality, he was glad he was friends with the Gryffindor now, even with her being from that damn house. He wouldn’t have an issue with Gryffindors if it weren’t for the fact that most students were obnoxiously cocky as being put in the ‘brave’ category, thinking they could get away with anything they wanted just because they happened to be the ‘good’ house. A few were rather humble about such things, though, which was what made him like Granger so much. Sure, early on in their years he was a right dick to her, but he hardly knew any better, and she seemed to have accepted that. It’d taken him so many apologies, but she finally caved, accepting a new found friendship which seemed to have been enjoying thus far.
His chuckle transformed into a short burst of laughter, being careful to still keep somewhat quiet. ”That’d be an acceptable answer if you weren’t such a far way aways from your little crimson and gold home. Not to mention you seem antsy, thus I’m guessing you have no clue where you are?” Draco glanced in her direction, flashing her his trademark grin that hinted mirth, trying to reassure her he was only teasing.
“Oi, there he is.” he heard someone mutter. Theo opened his eyes, sat up, yawned and turned his head to the entrance, only to see Draco hurrying towards them. It was actually rather comical. The platinum blonde’s cheeks were red and he was so obviously seething from something. Probably the students. It was always their fault, in situations involving Draco. Theo had to suppress a laugh. He probably knew what was getting to the guy, too. Knowing Draco…and since it was the first night back….it was probably the slow walkers due to ‘reuniting’. Theo shook his head. That was precisely why he had taken the more obscure route to the Great Hall.
“Have I ever mentioned how much I fucking hate this school?” Theo nearly rolled his eyes, then lowered his voice so only his friend could hear. “I’ve been on the verge going Avada Kedavra on every one ever since we got on the bloody train.” He laughed the threatening comment away, but they both knew he was serious. Raising his voice to a more conversation tone, he continued. “What’s the plan for after dinner? We going into the forest to blow things up or—?”
Draco subconsciously moved closer to Theo, as he usually did when they conversed in places like the Great Hall. Their voices would be near mutters, only loud enough for each other to hear. Even though the two were seen as more well known Slytherins, they preferred ignoring the rest of the crowd and sitting together in a dark edge or corner of the room, murmuring snarky quips to each other and referring old jokes, confiding in each other to find the comfort that someone else in the world thought like them, hated this place just as much as them. It really never was clear on if they were joking or not when they made remarks about Avada Kedavra-ing themselves or others, though they never really questioned it. Anyone who happened to listen to their conversations might find the two mentally unstable, might be highly confused or concerned for the lads by what they said. That’s what made them stick with each other so much, though; that they could make comments and the other partner in the conversation wouldn’t come back with something along the lines of ‘you need a trip to Azkaban, mate’ or ‘what did you get from Knockturn Alley?’
“Can we please go do that? I need to blow off some steam,” Draco grumbled to his best mate, stabbing at the various foods in different serving plates along the table, transferring them to his own plate. With his anger bubbling up inside of him, he was bound to explode at some point, and whether that was punching a first year or getting himself expelled by aiming a very unforgivable curse at someone, the outcome didn’t look good unless he calmed down. Usually the best options for doing so was to simmer and wait until he cooled off on his own, or set various things on fire or make them explode (which honestly made him feel like he was poor Seamus, but he tended to be too angry to pay any attention to that). Gripping his fork painfully tight, he jabbed at the chicken in front of him, deciding that now wouldn’t be the best time to blow something up and to just simmer in his own anger while chewing fiercely through his food.
Moments that could have been hours passed as they stood their in each others arms, nothing else in the world matter in those moments. Of course, bliss was ruined as new students and returning students voices could be heard heading towards the Slytherin Common Room. Sighing, Karson let go of Draco, pulling back just as various students chatting among themselves entered the room. “Well that will ruin a moment.” Pushing her hair from her face as she looked at Draco she tried not to let the end of something great get her down. The students barely looked at them as they made themselves at home on the chairs and couches, their voices flowing smoothly between each other.
“Want to go somewhere else?” Karson bit her lip gently. Really all she wanted was more time with Draco and they were not going to get that in the Common Room with all the other students swarming in. As more and more piled in, filling the room or just passing through to head to their rooms, she felt more and more crowded by the consistent voices streaming through her ears as she tried to stay focused on Draco. Her mind went places, everywhere as the conversations plowed into her mind, ruining any chance of alone time with Draco after a summer apart. Of course, the other students had spent their time apart, but she knew none of them had intimate relations with each other.
Draco mimicked her sigh, annoyed with the students filling the Common Room quickly. A few happened to look over at them while chatting noisily with those around them, making Draco send them a death glare that had them slinking away nervously. He muttered something along the lines of ‘prats’ - maybe with a few more choice words - under his breath, running a hand through his hair slowly. Looking down at the gorgeous girl in front of him, he smiled sheepishly, trying to portray an apology in the gaze. All he’d wanted was to catch up with his girlfriend after a long summer apart, to have some alone time together to reconnect. But would he get that here in the Common Room? Of course not.
That’s why he practically jumped on the idea of leaving. ”Yes! Please, anywhere but here,” he exclaimed excitedly, grabbing her hand and pulling her out of the Slytherin dorms completely. He practically dragged Karson down the hall, checking every once in a while to make sure no one was going to catch them. Turning to grin at her, they came to the end of a corridor, making him spin on his heel and bite his lip looking down at her. ”I’ve got the perfect place, love.”
“Six whole years. Wow, that’s a long time to keep it from the little kids.” He grinned and moved to sit beside him, licking over his lips as his eyes raked the boy’s face. He was undoubtedly attractive, his blonde hair and blue eyes framing his rather good-looking face. Cormac liked his eyes best about him already, the large blue standing out on his pale complexion.
“Hitting on you? Definitely.” He grinned and winked, leaning his head back against the wall. “I’m hitting on you and I don’t even know your name.”
“So tell me, pretty boy, what should I call you?”
“Hey, at this point, I practically own it.” Draco kept his eyes trained on the lad now sitting next to him, watching him obviously checking him out and not bothering to hide it. Surely if Draco wasn’t already taken, he’d be all over him. The Slytherin had no issues with who he got with, uncaring of whether he was with a girl or a guy. And considering that this lad was quite attractive, if he and Karson hadn’t been together, he’d be chatting this guy up like his life depended on it.
“The name’s Draco. And who might you be?” Draco smirked at the lad next to him, extending one of his legs so it laid out more comfortably. He began rolling up his parchment, stashing it, his quill, and his ink pot all away in his knapsack, pushing his book closer to it.
Rie gasped for air as she exited the stuffy Herbology room. The first round of classes were over for the day, leaving the upperclassmen to gorge on food in the Great Hall while the Underclassmen meekly snuck back into their dorms to do their homework like the good little kids that they were. Rie was excited for the school day to be over, her potions book dangling just barely from her fingers as she rounded corners.
He was easy to spot in the Great Hall, not many students sported a mop of platinum blonde hair. Rie grinned a little to herself as she approached him. It was not a secret that she had befriended Draco Malfoy some time in her 5th year, though she didn’t exactly parade around the halls screaming it for the entire castle to hear.
“Hey there stranger,” She murmured, taking a seat next to the blonde. She wasn’t sure where Karson was, in fact it was surprising that he wasn’t already attached to the hip with her. “Long time no see.” She grinned, plopping her book on the table. She frowned a little at it, reminded of the impending detention she was supposed to serve with that stuffy Nott kid.
Draco snorted as he flipped through his Defense Against the Dark Arts book, reading over some of the material that he was supposed to write up as homework. Really, the subject was a joke to him; he wasn’t in any real need for it, considering his family was part of the ‘darker’ side of the wizarding world. Now, that didn’t mean he necessarily agreed with what it entailed and all of it’s twisted and sick ways, but he was still fairly sure he wouldn’t need to know anything about defending himself. Having come from a family from the darker side, he knew about what kind of magic they used; the curses and charms, the magical creatures. He knew what would be the best defense against those, though would he ever need to find a use for it? Realistically, he hoped not, or not to even have to use such dark magic. All he wanted was to stay neutral, though he’d likely never get that because of his ties with such dark families.
The familiar voice knocked him out of his own thoughts, pulling his eyes away from the book and up to the origin. Smiling softly at Rie, he looked back down at his DADA book and shut it lazily, starting to roll up his parchment. He knew with someone like Rie around, he’d hardly have any desire to actually do his work. She was one of those rare people he couldn’t get tired of talking to, and he wasn’t going to sit there and be rude to someone who was actually willing to come and talk with him. ”Ah, Edgecombe, and to what do I owe the pleasure?” he drawled, smirking slightly as he watched he scowl slightly at her own book, fighting a small snort of laughter at it.
Hermione gave a giant exhale and stood up, too quickly, causing her balance to waver. She’d been sitting in the Gryffindor common room for hours after class ended, wondering where in the world her two best friends were. Rare occasions such as these made her wish that she had spent more time with her classmates so that asking to grab a butterbeer wouldn’t come off as out of the ordinary. Up until a year ago, everyone thought Hermione was the bushy-haired girl who tagged along The Boy Who Lived just to show off her skills and smarts. But she was changing. She wanted to…not distance herself from the boys, but just…show everyone that she could be her own person. She could be…daring and…reckless.
She pushed back the sleeves of her dark grey plaid shirt, re-did her side braid and marched straight out of the painting, down the stairs and into a random corridor. It was time to be adventurous. She didn’t need her absolute closest friends at her side to do anything exciting. No, she was Hermione Granger and if she wanted something to happen, she was going to go right out and do just that. Pausing in mid-stride, she realized one thing.
…Hermione had no idea where she was. Being so caught up in trying the daring life, she somehow had wandered off into a part of the castle she never had the time to come across. Shaking her head, Hermione pursed her lips and continued to walk. No matter. It’s Hogwarts. No one ever gets lost permanently. And it’s actually quite nice in these parts. She curiously peered through a window and saw that it was dusk. Somehow she had a view of the Black Lake. How could that be? She couldn’t have wandered that close to the outer walls of the castle…? Drawing in a calm breath, she kept moving her feet and swung her arms with a small smile on her lips.
This was sort of fun.
Draco shambled about the dungeons, something he did often at this time of night to clear his head and just think for a while. Sometimes he’d venture up to the corridors just above the dungeons, like he did tonight. Rarely would he pass another person, and if he did, they knew to leave him be. Only once had he been ‘caught’ (if that even was the proper term) by a professor, and that was just a simple case of needing to charm his way out of trouble. As for Filch…. Well, that man was far more scared of Draco’s family than he let across.
Just as he was about to turn and wander back towards his dorm, he heard a scuffling ahead, the distinct strong footsteps of the only person in the entire school that had such a proud strut. Grinning, he looked up to see a furiously fast walking Hermione, looking out the windows at the Black Lake just outside. Obviously, she hadn’t heard him, and likely didn’t know where she was, considering these corridors were solely used to get to the dungeons for Potions and the Slytherin Common Rooms, the usual route for her being on the most used passageway closer to the other side of the school. He stuffed his hands deep into his pockets, leaning one shoulder on the brick wall and let his typical smirk slide along his lips as he watched her stroll down the corridor, looking lost in her own thoughts (per usual). ”Well well, Granger, what brings you down to my end of the castle?” he drawled, trying to gather her attention.
Hey there, have we met? My memory is a little foggy.
No, we have not. -blows air out-
I am Xander Pace. 7th year Slytherin, and man you are gorgeous.
Well Xander, I am Karson Paisley, Sixth Year Slythern, but thank you.
Their eyes met and another series of butterflies exploded in her small stomach as her heart skipped what must of been hundreds of beats, if that was possible. The moment his arms wrapped around her, she melted into him as the familiar scent of him filled her body. “I missed you.” she spoke softly, quietly into his own neck as she held him just as tightly. She knew they could not possibly be any closer without being a single body, but she wished she could. Her soul seemed to light up when she got to see him, igniting all her true passions in life. Wanting to see his face, she loosened her grip, pulling back slightly as a smile slid across her lips. “Oh, Merlin.” Karson breathed as she locked her eyes with his. Taking her hands she placed them on either side of his cheeks, letting her smile grow to even greater lengths.
Words seemed to be stuck on her tongue, she was so speechless to see him after the long summer. Being stuck in France with her parents, not being able to talk to him, or practically even leave from the house, she couldn’t express how glad she was to be back at Hogwarts, but this, this feeling flowing vividly through her body knew it was all worth it. There was so much to talk about since their days apart, but in that very moment all Karson wanted to do was sit there, to just be held by his caring arms and soak up all his warmth before the fireplace. Her hazel eyes were lit brilliantly as she looked at him, knowing all too well that a faint blush was creeping onto her cheeks the longer she looked at him. Feeling her cheeks ablaze, she fell back closely into his arms, snuggling her head in-between his neck and shoulder.
Letting her down, Draco kept Karson pulled close, unwilling to let her go just yet. He hated the fact that they hadn’t been able to talk all summer, with her parents keeping her locked up in France and his father intercepting all of his letters. Draco had tried Merlin knows how many times to send her letters, to force some sort of contact with his girlfriend, but Lucius wouldn’t have any of it. He didn’t approve of the relationship – hell, he didn’t approve of anything that made Draco happy – and he wouldn’t let any letter past him, keeping Draco unhappy when he didn’t have Theo there to distract him.
But finally, finally, Karson was there in his arms, her tiny body pressed close to his. He had his face buried in the crook of her neck, not caring that her hair was covering most of his face. He didn’t want to move at all, didn’t want to ruin this moment. He knew they didn’t even have to talk, they never really did. They just enjoyed being with each other, opting not to ruin moments like these with words. They could save talking for when they got done being back with each other after a long few months apart.
“Oi, Nott!” He heard someone call in the distance, but he didn’t recognize the voice so he didn’t turn around. Theo strolled down a corridor that was going opposite from where everyone else seemed to go. He heard someone call after him again and suppressed an exasperated sigh. It was an annoyingly common thing when everyone in your house pretended to be your best friend all the time. Normally, it was easier than breathing to embrace it, but Theo wasn’t in the mood right now. In fact, if anyone were to go all ‘buddy’ on him at that moment, he would probably send curses their way with no regrets no matter the consequences. He was tired, he didn’t want to go to the banquet, he wanted to go home, he wanted to be away from all the students that surrounded him. Permanently.
Taking a few twisting turns to avoid all the clamor in the main halls, Theo could practically feel the bundle of irritation and nerves in his chest unwound. A sensation of something between being calm and indifferent spread through him and he took a deep breath, telling himself that it might not be as bad as he was making it out to be. Being at Hogwarts never used to be so bad, he thought with a sliver of hope running through him. It was a lie. The sliver of hope disintegrated. Theo had always hated being at Hogwarts. Stop being so negative, it won’t help, he told himself quickly, almost scolding himself. He was always too hard on himself and everything else for every difficult situation. All he had to do was power through the next year and then he would be coasting.
Theo took a final turn and found himself in the midst of buzzing underclassmen that he didn’t recognize in the bright-lit corridor that led to the Great Hall. He pushed past them and found his place at the long Slytherin table. The exciting chatter that seemed to echo off the walls was giving him a headache and he rested his cheek against his palm, waiting for Draco to appear so they could talk about how much they hated everything.
Draco weaved his way through the throngs of students, nudging most of the small underclassmen out of the way. Honestly, if it were his choice, he would have taken a less busy corridor, though having just gotten inside the castle, he was forced into the busiest corridors of the whole school. It was no secret that the bright blonde lad hated crowds - well, hated people in general - but he preferred little to no people around him. It didn’t help that he had a small case of claustrophobia, which usually could be kept under control when he had room, but of course, no he doesn’t have any, so his throat was feeling constricted and he felt a tiny amount of anxiety bubbling up within him. This urged him to walk faster, get out of the crowds as quick as he could.
He came up behind a group of third years, frowning deeply as the pace slowed to that of a slug’s. As kindly as he could, he muttered, “Pardon me,” to the girl in front of him. The girl tilted her head, indicating she heard him, though ignored him in favour of laughing at some poor joke her friend told. Clearing his throat, Draco called out the phrase louder, grabbing the attention of two more of the girls. He earned himself a matching set of death glares, as though he was the one interrupting them. The anxiety from before quickly boiled into frustration and anger, and Bloody hell, if these idiots don’t move soon I shouldn’t held responsible for my actions. ”Fucking hell, move!” he bellowed, wrenching his arms between two girls and pushing them out of his way before striding past them quickly. He didn’t bother looking back at the annoying group, the shocked gasps and angry whispers running about behind him enough of an indication of their reaction.
Draco practically ran the last length to the Slytherin table in the Great Hall, tired of everyone already and it being only 10 minutes into the new school year. He spotted Theo quickly, planting himself next to him on the bench with an exasperated huff. He knew he looked like a mess; cheeks were probably flushed slightly, hair out of place and annoyance practically seething out of his pores, but he really just didn’t give a shit, especially around Theo. Running his palm over his face, he left it off covering his mouth, resting his chin on it and darting his eyes to his best mate next to him. ”Have I ever mentioned just how much I fucking hate people at this school?” he drawled unemotionally, cocking an eyebrow at his friend.