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Thread: The Character Gymnasium

  1. #41

    The Character Gymnasium: Resolution

    This is the third challenge of the Character Gymnasium and the theme is:


    Nicely following on from last week's theme about conflict, this week we will look at the ways our Original Characters resolve their differences. Is your character always the first to say sorry or too stubborn to admit his/her own faults? Do they feel guilty easily about harsh words that have been said? Are they the type to talk through their differences? Or are they the type to leave a teddy bear in someone's bed as a quiet apology? (okay, so this is something I did as a kid!)

    I'm leaving this challenge open to interpretation. It must either involve an Original Character who wishes to resolve an issue with another character, or your OC's response to another character's wishes. This drabble can be a continuation of last week's, or entirely different.

    Entries must be no more than 700 words and you may enter two drabbles each.

    Deadline: 20th August

    10 points to the winner, and five for runner-up

    Also, I've had quite a few people asking, there's no 'sign-up' for these drabble challenges. You come and go from them as you please.

  2. #42
    Name: andromea_tonks
    House: Hufflepuff
    Original Character: Bethan Cotton
    Warnings: Self harm, mental disorders, DH spoilers
    Word Count: 685

    I run upstairs to the empty dormitory, and sit down at my desk, working hard to keep every movement controlled. My steps are even, my movement fluid. This is the task I set myself daily: to be in control. To be perfectly normal. Nothing wrong with me. Sometimes, if I concentrate hard enough, I block out the voice in my head. Worthless. Worthless. Failure. You think you can pass OWLs? A fool like you has no chance, forget it. You don’t belong in Ravenclaw. You’re no one. You’re nothing. Worthless. Sometimes I can’t block it out. Just now, downstairs in the Common Room, Rose was talking about OWLs. I couldn’t bear it; I had to get away.

    My head is filled with thunder, and I have to fight not to shake with pain. My control is slipping. I know what I have to do. I raise my wand, and gently stroke it along my arm. A red line appears there, quickly spreading across my wrist. All my pain flows out through the cut, until all that I am is reduced to just that one stinging wound. I close my eyes and ride the tide of wonder sweeping over me. It feels like I am discovering the world for the first time. A tingling sensation sweeps over me, and I can feel every cell in my body. I am so very, very alive, every bad thought is gone. My control is back.


    I start as the door slams open behind me, smudging my blouse with blood. Rose is standing there, staring at me. He face spins through emotions: curiosity, disgust, fear, worry, anger. “Bethan!”

    I turn away from her to carefully blot the wound I have made. “Bethan!” she exclaims again, “What are you doing?”


    “Oh, sure. What happened to your arm, then?”

    “I caught it on a nail.”

    “What nail?”

    I look around desperately for something sharp that I might have caught my arm on, but it’s too late. Rose dashes across the room and seizes my wand. “Priori Incantatem!” A ghostly hand with a damaged wrist flies out and hovers in mid air. “I knew it. Oh, Bethan, why?”

    “I didn’t,” I deny uselessly, “I mean I did, but I... Oh, what’s it to you, anyway?” I feel my anger rising, “what do you know? You never worry about anything!”

    “I worry about you. How could you, Bethan?” I expected her to shout, instead her voice is quiet. It is also shaking. “Come on, Bethan. Let’s go to the Hospital Wing.”


    “Bethan, you’ll give yourself blood poisoning!” Her control is failing now, I think she’s on the verge of shouting. She takes my arm and tries to pull me towards the door. Before I have time to think, I react instinctively, grabbing my wand. Rose jerks away from me, gasping, and I see that the palm of her hand is burnt. I cannot apologise. She shouldn’t have tried to take me to the Hospital Wing. I am in control of myself; I don’t need the Hospital Wing. That is for people who can’t look after themselves. People with no control.

    “Get out, Rose.” I expect her to argue, but instead a tear slides down her cheek, followed by another. Then, she turns and leaves without a word. I made her go, so why do I feel disappointed?

    Now you’ve upset her, jeers the voice in my head, How could you?

    She shouldn’t have come barging in here, I argue back, but it is useless. The voice continues remorselessly.

    You hurt her, when she was only trying to help you. She won’t want to be your friend now. You can’t be a friend. You can’t work. What are you good for, Bethan Cotton? I can’t bear it. I simply can’t.

    The voice is right. I hurt her. I deserve punishment. I look at the cut on my arm. The fight with Bethan has destroyed my control. I need control. Control needs order. Order comes in patterns. Ordered patterns are symmetrical. I pick up my wand, and turn to my other, unmarked arm.

  3. #43
    OC: Dandin Walcott
    Word Count: 500
    Warning: None

    Dandin sneered one last time at Harry before turning on his heel and stalking off down the corridor, Branson directly behind him. Anger burned through him like a fire through dead leaves, and he marched furiously though the torch-lit halls until they reached the portrait to the common room.

    “Merlin, Dandin, you know that Cedric doesn’t care for those badges one bit. Why do you have to keep tormenting Potter like that? Why do you have to be so immature?”

    “I’m immature?” Dandin snarled, rounding on his friend. “Potter’s the bloody one who entered the Tournament just for a laugh... and you call me immature?”

    “This really isn’t about Potter, Dann,” Branson started, frowning, but Dandin cut him off.

    “You bet your life this isn’t about Potter, Brandy, this is about Cedric. This whole damned Tournament is about Cedric, Cedric Diggory – our best friend. I’m not going to let some Nargle like Potter take it away from him.”

    “That’s not the point!” Branson shouted. “The point, Dann, is that Ced told you to lay off Potter. He’s sick of the jibes and the arguments. Can’t you respect Ced enough to do that? Just leave Potter alone.” Branson shook his head before turning to tap the portrait with his wand, and Dandin turned away, crossing his arms over his chest.

    Left alone in the corridor outside the common room, Dandin had no desire whatsoever to follow Branson inside. He was angry, and more alarmingly, he was confused. He had always hung to the thread of chivalry that was defending his friends against all odds. Had he really, finally, gone too far? The confrontation with Branson certainly seemed to indicate that. But Potter deserved it, in Dandin’s opinion. This was supposed to be Cedric’s chance to shine, and instead, Potter had once again managed to steal the limelight.

    And Dandin hated him for that. Potter was the enemy, and Dandin had never lost a fight when his friends’ well-beings were on the line. Hadn’t Dandin faced off against the obnoxious Weasley twins the very first day of school so long ago? Wasn’t that his role? The ferocious one who was fiercely loyal to his friends? Why, suddenly, was that not good enough? Why not?

    “Dann?” Cedric’s voice cut across Dandin’s thoughts. “Branson told me what happened. What’s up, mate?”

    Dandin, however, didn’t even turn to face his friend, he was too unsure of what might come out of his mouth when he was in such a volatile mood. And apparently, Dandin had had quite enough of his friends for the moment. “Don’t start, Cedric,” he snapped. “I know, right? I’ll leave bloody Potter well enough alone.”

    “Dann, come on,” Cedric started, but Dandin cut him off.

    “I’m going to the library,” he snapped, before marching off down the corridor.

    Cedric turned to re-enter the common room, but the portrait was opened from the inside as Branson leaned out of the portrait hole, looking after Dandin’s retreating form. “Library, again?”

    Cedric just sighed.

  4. #44
    Name: Mudblood_and_Proud_of_it
    House: Hufflepuff
    OC and POV: Rose Raklynne
    Warnings: Violence
    Words: 450

    I sat, tied up and shaking in Amycus Carrow’s office as I had been for hours, trying to ignore the continuous harsh insults he threw at me about my mother. This time it was my “cheek” that landed me in detention. I tried to block out the grating sound of his voice, but his words were like swords, sticking into me; slowly breaking my calm.

    “She was hardly a witch! Dirty Mudblood lover!”

    I struggled to keep a straight face, trying to dispel my anger, but my efforts remained futile. How dare he? Suddenly, the ropes that bound me started smoking, but he took no notice.

    “Your mother was nothing but a weakling! She died begging at our feet!”

    My calm shattered in that instant and fury such as I’d never felt before shot through me. He would pay for that. He would pay. Suddenly, my ropes snapped of their own accord as the rage coursed through me. I fell for a second and hit the floor. With a burst of energy born of anger, I snatched up my wand and leaped like a cat at Carrow. Blood pounded in my ears and I shook with barely contained fury, but my eyes didn't see him.

    I was back in my parent’s bedroom on the night mum died. I saw, clear as day as Amycus raised his wand and cast the Cruciatus Curse over and over as my mum writhed and screamed. I heard his taunts and jeers as my mother dueled Bellatrix. And I heard his laughter as she fell.

    “Take it back!” I snarled, face-to-face with him, “Take it back!”

    He could taunt me, tie me up, torture me for my “cheek,” but he would not tell lies, he would not dirty my mother’s name and memory with insults like that. She died like a hero, and if that’s what it would take to defend her, so would I.

    “Take it back!” I screamed again, placing my wand tip- quite steadily- at his throat. He smiled, opened his mouth to expel yet another insult, but I swung my arm up and knocked his wand out of his hand, sending it skittering to a corner.

    His eyes widened in fear. He knew I would do it. He knew.

    “Take it back,” I growled, my voice low and murderous, “She died a hero, but you will be nothing more than a coward! Take. It. Back.”

    He didn’t know how much pain he and Bellatrix caused me, but that didn’t matter. For as I stood there with my wand against his throat, I vowed to make him feel every little bit of pain he had caused my mother. Every little bit.


  5. #45
    Name: starkllr/James
    House: Slytherin
    OC: Jane Barnaby
    Words: 548

    My brother is shouting at me. Screaming. “Are you crazy? Do you want to get yourself killed?”

    He knows exactly what I’m thinking, what I’m feeling, and he still can’t understand. “Gwen’s my friend. I have to go.” I have to go soon. It’s already after eleven, and I need to be in the Forest before midnight. I think I know how to get into the secret passage that leads out to the grounds, but I don’t want to cut things too close.

    “I know she’s your friend, and I know how loyal you are, but this is just stupid! The Forbidden Forest is forbidden for a reason! Did you not listen at all when Professor Potter told us about it?”

    He’s scared to death. Even if I couldn’t feel what he’s feeling, I’d know. He gets all cold and distant when he’s angry. He only shouts when he’s afraid. “I listened. But it doesn’t matter. Gwen’s my friend. She needs me there.” That’s all there is to it, really. Nobody else is going to be there for her. She doesn’t have any other friends, just me. So I have to go.

    “I’ll tell Professor Potter! I’ll tell the Headmaster!” His thoughts are as loud as his voice. He’s going out of his head, he’s so frightened. He really does think I’m going to get myself hurt.

    “You’re not going to tell anybody. We’ve never tattled on each other, never. Not once. You’re not going to start now. And you know I have to go. Gwen’s my friend.” I turn my back on him, and I head for the door. We’re in an empty classroom just down the corridor from where we have Transfiguration. If I remember right, the passage I need is just one floor up from here. I’ll be able to get there in time.

    “Jane, don’t do this!” His voice is so loud now it rattles the windows, and it’s even louder in my head. I don’t answer him. He knows I have to go, and nothing he says is going to change that. I’m through the door, and I slam it behind me. He’s still in my head, and he’s not shouting anymore.

    He’s crying. He’s never done that before. Never. It takes every bit of willpower I’ve got not to turn around and go back. He’s imagining what it would be like to find my body, trampled by a centaur, or half-eaten by one of the giant spiders Professor Potter told us about, or ripped to shreds by a werewolf. It’s the worst thing…I can’t take it. It hurts. It’s tearing him up, and it’s tearing me up. .

    I have to go. I can’t do this with George crying about how I might get killed in the Forest. I can’t listen to this. I shout at him like I’ve never shouted before, and I…push. And he’s gone. He’s out of my head, I can’t hear him, I can’t feel him. There’s silence in my mind for the first time since…ever. I don’t want to think how much it’s hurting him. I’ll worry about that later. Right now I have to get out of the castle and to the Forest. I’ve got to find Gwen and make sure she’s alright. Gwen’s my friend.

  6. #46
    Name: Schmerg_The_Impaler
    House: Hufflepuff
    OC and POV: Emma Weasley Thomas and Tyrone Thomas, from Emma's point of view.
    Warnings: The b-l-o-o-d-y word.
    Words: 687
    Note: Emma and Tyrone's daughter is named Joey, short for Josephine. SHE IS NOT A BOY. Thank you. ^_^

    I was washing the dishes with a vengeance, practically rubbing holes in the plates. Like a slave driver, I supervised fiercely, occasionally flicking my wand to amp up the progress of the sponge I’d enchanted to do the job. I was busy glaring at a red plastic bowl with cartoony hippogriffs on it when all of a sudden, a pair of arms seized me from behind. I screamed and dropped my wand, sending the levitating dishes smashing to the ground.

    “Whoa, Em! Relax! It’s me!” laughed my husband of ten years, holding up his big, broad hands in mock-surrender.

    “Yeah, that’s what I was afraid of,” I muttered, bending over to gather up my wand and clean up the pieces of the dishes before anyone stepped on them and sliced their feet into lunchmeat. Though honestly, letting Tyrone do just that wouldn’t be a bad idea.

    Tyrone straddled a kitchen chair heavily, with that lazy, casual grace of his that always seemed to hover between being extremely attractive and extremely irritating. Right then, it wasn’t hovering. It was resting firmly on the second option. “Bad day at work?” he said sympathetically.

    I let out a humourless bark of laughter. “You could say that. I got an interesting memo at the Auror office. Turns out you dropped Joey off at the wrong bus stop and she ended up at the wrong school.” I sighed. “Today was the first day of kindergarten, Tyrone. Could you try NOT to screw something up, just for once?”

    Tyrone blinked slowly. “Whoa. I have no idea how that happened.”

    “Of course!” shouted, dropping the plate I’d just mended. “You’re the most clueless person I’ve ever met—and I’ve met new Auror trainees, so that’s saying something. Look, this isn’t cute. If you’re going to be an idiot, at least save it for times when it isn’t going to affect other people. Joey is a witch, she’s going to have enough trouble fitting in as it is.”

    “Well, maybe if you weren’t always so busy at work, my hands wouldn’t always be so full!” snapped Tyrone. “You think because I’m between jobs, I have it easy. I do a lot more around the house than you’ve ever done.”

    I rolled my eyes. “Well, you never take out the trash. And you never leave the toilet seat down.”

    “You never refill the ice trays.”

    “And you buy sugary snacks for the kids whenever they ask for them.”

    “And you buy them war games, Emma. They think grown-ups run around killing each other. Who’s that going to help?”

    I narrowed my eyes. “It will teach them self-defence,” I snapped. “You’re too trusting. You let them run around wild in the street.”
    “Well, you snore.”

    “You talk about food in your sleep.”

    “You talk about Star Wars in your sleep.”

    “You steal the covers.”

    “You have hair on your toes.”

    “You’ve put on twenty pounds since we got married.”

    Tyrone’s hands flew defensively to his belly. I could tell I’d brought up a sensitive subject—his eyebrows did that thing where they wrinkled up and made him look like a confused puppy. “So what?” he demanded, looking extremely offended. “Yeah, I put on a bit of weight since I stopped with Quidditch. Yeah, I eat a lot of junk food. Better than starving on your cooking.”

    I stepped forward, my arms folded. “Well, if you don’t like it, you COULD help me out with cooking for once,” I said, poking him in the stomach.

    “You slap my hand away every time I try to touch anything in the kitchen!” he protested.

    “Yeah, that’s ‘cos I know you’d screw up anything you tried.”

    “Well, you never have any faith in me.”

    Our exciting argument was interrupted by a horrible crash from above. “We’ll talk about this later,” I snapped. “Right now, I have to check out whatever that was.”

    Tyrone sighed, running his hands through his hair. “Don’t shout too much,” he said quietly.

    “I’m saving all my shouting for you, buster,” I hissed, stalking upstairs and leaving him in the kitchen with a pile of dirty, broken dishes.
    And my second drabble, a sequel to the first taking place about twenty minutes later the same day... This has a resolution in it, because I didn't see what the third challenge was. I'll put a different, more creative type of resolution in my resolutions challenge, but this drabble seems too open-ended without the resolution.

    Name: Schmerg_The_Impaler
    House: Hufflepuff
    OC and POV: Emma Weasley Thomas and Tyrone Thomas, from Emma's point of view.
    Warnings: Mushiness and fluff
    Words: 699
    I was in a thoroughly bad mood as I descended the stairs, a dark nimbus swirling around my head with the occasional lightning bolt shooting out of it. And it didn’t get any better as I reached the bottom of the stairs, because sitting there in the kitchen, looking up at me, was my husband Tyrone, wearing his Innocent Face.

    “So,” he said. “What’s for dinner?”

    “I thought you said you hated my cooking,” I countered.

    He shrugged. “I do. Doesn’t mean I’m not hungry.”

    I gave him a long, long look, the kind my dad would call ‘the old hairy eyeball.’ “Because that’s definitely encouragement,” I snorted. “You get yourself something, fat boy. I’m too tired—you kept me up all last night complaining about how hard it is to find a new job.”

    Tyrone’s Innocent Face switched to his Dignified Face. “You were the one who made me take two years off to take care of Joey when she was first born. Then I couldn’t get back into the pro Quidditch league. So, technically, it’s your fault I need to find another job.”

    “Well, you made me go to Disney World on our honeymoon.”

    “Well, you pinched my bum at the altar!”

    “Well, you got me pregnant THREE TIMES. Worst twenty-seven months of my life!”

    “Well, it’s not like you didn’t help with that!”

    “Well, your feet always smell. And you leave your socks lying around.”

    “Well, you swear in front of the kids!”

    “Well, you play air-guitar in public!”

    “Well, you peel off your lip skin and eat it!”

    “Well, you’ve got a bald spot!”

    Tyrone froze in his tracks. His mouth opened and closed soundlessly. It was as though I had just poured a bucket of cold water over him. Silently, he turned on his heel and raced out of the room in search of a mirror. I cackled to myself. The man’s hair was thriving as always, and, apparently, so was his vanity.

    A few minutes later, having thoroughly inspected every millimeter of his scalp, Tyrone returned, looking rather bashful and defeated. “Listen,” he said. “I’m really, really, really sorry about Joey. And stuff. I was an idiot.”

    “You can say that again,” I snapped, then my expression softened slightly in spite of myself. He was doing that thing with his eyebrows again. “Yeah, I know you’re sorry,” I sighed. “Why does this happen every day? I never mean to start yelling at you. It just happens.”

    Tyrone stepped a little closer. “We both need to calm down,” he mumbled. “You’re a freak, but I love you anyway. That’s the big thing, I guess. That’s what matters.”

    “And you are a total moron,” I informed him softly. “But you know I love you, too.”

    “Sometimes, I’m not so sure if you do,” muttered Tyrone, looking at the floor.

    Oh, no. Oh, no. Stupid, stupid irresistible Tyrone, making it impossible to stand my ground, making it impossible ever since we were teenagers. I couldn’t help myself. I grabbed that man and gave him a great big hug. And after a split second’s hesitation, he returned it. Tyrone may have devoted the last several years to growing a substantial belly, but his arms were still as strong as they’d ever been, his embrace just as warm.

    “Mr. Thomas,” I informed him, “You should know that I love you just as much as I did when I got arrested for carving our initials on the Tree of Life in the Animal Kingdom when we were on our honeymoon.”

    “We’re so weird,” Tyrone said, kissing me. “I don’t know how we stand each other.”

    He was about to kiss me again when a plaintive little voice from the doorway said, “Oh, no, don’t do that!” It was Joey, hands on hips and expression profoundly disgruntled. “I’ve had a hard enough day as it is.”

    Tyrone and I exchanged glances, then burst out laughing.

    “Hey,” said Tyrone, kneeling down at Joey’s eye level. “Want to go play Cowboys and Dark Wizards in the backyard?”

    “Not so fast, mister,” I interrupted, placing my hand firmly on my husband’s shoulder. An evil smile crawled across my face. “You’re doing the dishes.”

  7. #47
    Name: Enneirda/AJ
    House: Hufflepuff
    OC: Artemis Nyxlin
    Word Count: 686
    Warnings: None

    The graveyard was silent. Not even the birds disturbed the dead. Artemis stared quietly at the top of the hill, where a single figure stood. Grinding her stub of a cigarette beneath her foot, she kept her hands in her pockets, protecting them from cold. The small wedding ring she had been holding for ten years pressed against her palm. It was incredibly freezing.

    This had been on her to-do list for quite a while, right after "Murder Minister of Magic" and before "Buy puppy chow for Erebos". Making a mental note to buy that food after this, she trudged up the lonesome hill.

    As expected, the man was standing at the foot of a headstone, solemnly staring at the once sparkling marble. The man's first name was unimportant - she had never wanted to learn it. However, she was familiar with the alias etched on the dirty stone before them: Emily Ahrens-Wood. It was Artemis' hardest murder. The victim was so keen on escaping with her life. It was the only time Artemis regretted her skills.

    "She hated you," the burly man said, rubbing his eyes quickly. She recognized him: A Quidditch star for the Puddlemere United. She forced herself not recall his name.

    "Mr. Wood, everyone hates me," Artemis returned, her pink orb glued to the grave marker.

    "Then it's not a surprise that I hate you as well," he said. He took a deep breath and ripped his eyes away from the grave. "She was everything to me, and you killed her in cold blood." His voice shook, yet it never broke. She stood by in respectful silence, unmoving like a statue. "Do you enjoy it?" he snapped, "Do you enjoy taking other people's lives?"

    She didn't respond at first. It was never in her nature to apologize, but it seemed incredibly appropriate right then. "I simply make a living, Mr. Wood," she explained carefully.

    He scoffed. "The slaughtering of people because others pay you? No, that is not a job - that is not a living."

    "I apologize for your loss," she said after a slight pause. "However, being alone is not the worst thing in the world, Mr. Wood."

    He was looking over the hill of grave sites, as if trying to find something to say. "You took my love away," he finally said. He turned to her. "And you need to know I will never forgive you. In fact, I have an urge to push you down this hill."

    She suppressed a laugh. He wouldn’t even be able to touch her if he tried. She composed herself once more, making sure he didn’t see her restraint. "You needn't forgive me," she said quietly. "I merely wanted to apologize. I... I'm sorry."

    He wasn't speaking to her anymore. She had expected this. "Thank you for apologizing," he muttered, finally. "But saying sorry will not bring her back."

    "I have dealt with death my entire life, Mr. Wood. It is never a pretty thing, nor is it well forgotten. Your wife will always live in my heart, strange as it seems. She was the first person I took that I actually cared for." The gray overcast was unnerving Artemis. She hated the rain. Breathing in the cool air after her short speech, she felt the dead woman's small ring in her pocket. It was getting late; the shop would be closed soon. "Good day, Mr. Wood."

    She started down the hill, but she soon halted. "Why?" he called. She turned to stare at him. "Why did you take her?" he asked again, almost hysterical.

    She climbed back to the top and handed him the ring. He took it in awe. Her guess was that he thought he would never see it again. Clapping him on the shoulder, she took the energy she had saved to produce a comforting smile. It was an odd irony - the murderer consoling the husband of the victim. The world was never simple.

    She placed her hand back into her pocket and headed once more down the grassy knoll. "Goodbye, Mr. Wood. I will see you soon."

  8. #48


    Name: MorganRay
    House: Hufflepuff
    Character: Bijorn Asketorp (his POV)
    Story: Winter's Last Chill
    Words: 602
    Warnings: None

    I ran through the rain as the rain began to beat upon me. It made blood colored splotches on my ruby cloak, and I pressed my bowler hat against my head to keep it from blowing off. I rushed through the doorway and slammed the door against the chill.

    I coughed as I walked and stirred all the dust mites out of their sleep. I took off my cloak and draped it over my shoulder. I paused to straighten out my maroon suite and adjust the black, silk tie. I pulled a strand of wet, blond hair out of my face and put it back into place.

    I was already late, and I didn’t want the reception to be any worse than the one I already knew was coming to me at the top of the stairs. I took a breath and fixed a pleasant smile, which charmed all my colleagues at the Ministry, upon my face. I wondered if it could win him over as I ascended the stairs.

    I opened the door and stepped into his office. “Where have you been?”

    The gruff voice rasped out the question before I had both feet on his frumpy, old carpet. “It was raining, Gregory,” I replied and laid my cloak over a chair. “I’m sorry for the delay.”

    The old man scowled and squinted at me over his thick nose. He needed glasses, but his vanity would not permit it. “You’re a foolish boy, Bjiorn,” he growled and scrutinized every part of my body with those watery blue eyes. I swore he might be trying to look at the fibers in my suite.

    “Why do you wear such bright colors?” he asked with a cutting edge in his voice. Then, in his next question, he let the knife slip into me. “It’s because you like men, isn’t it? You foolish boy. You’re no grandson of mine.”

    I froze for a moment and stood perfectly still. I had been about to sit down, but the comment cut me. I didn’t know he knew. I pressed down the lump in my throat. “Well, grandfather, if you don’t want me here, just tell me to leave,” I replied in a soft, level voice. My good response restored pride in my self-control.

    I snapped my head around when Gregory let out a harsh, rasping laugh. I’d never heard him laugh before in all my time working under him. “Why, boy, you can never leave me,” Gregory sneered as he continued to squint at me, “You can’t do anything with me! What are you without my influence?”

    Something inside of my fluttered, and even though I tried to swallow that lump building in my throat, I could not do it again. I tried to blink back the tears. When he saw the tears, I heard him chuckle. “What a weak thing you are, Bijorn.”

    “On that point, you would be wrong,” I told him even though my voice wavered. “I am a pleasant person, Gregory. Despite what you say, I have friends. I don’t need money to buy me everything in life. Maybe I don’t want your ‘influence.’”

    Gregory only sneered at me over his desk piled with dusty, out-dated papers. “You’ve already dishonored our blood.”

    “Then, I’m not needed hear any more,” I replied curtly as I picked up my cloak and turned towards the door.

    “I’ll have you fired by tomorrow morning!” Gregory bellowed behind me.

    This time, it was my turn to laugh. As I arrived at the top of the stairs, I hollered, without turning back, “People like me. I’ll get another job.”

  9. #49
    Name: Celtic_Jewel
    House: Slytherin
    OC: AdriAnne Edwin (a girl)
    Words: 674
    Warnings: None

    “Do we have to go? Sports are boring. Why don’t we just stay here?” Danielle’s whining was getting on my nerves. Can’t we do something she doesn’t want to do for a change? Or, better yet, she could do what she wanted, without getting including the rest of us. Kathleen hesitated.

    “Come on, Kathleen. You do want to see your brother play, don’t you? Quidditch is great, and it’s the first match of the season! He’ll be really disappointed if you don’t come,” I implored. She nodded, came to stand next to me.

    “But I don’t want to go!” Danielle had started shouting now. Merlin, she was so spoilt. I lost my temper, big time.

    “Well, we do! And we’re going to do what WE want for a change, not you! If you’d just take ONE second to think about somebody OTHER than yourself, you’d realise that the world DOES NOT revolve around you! Who do you think you are? Your just a spoilt, ignorant baby who hasn’t even learnt to share yet!” I took a deep breath, trying to calm down. I haven’t got a bad temper, I’m usually quite easy-going, but there was something about her thin voice that just pushed my buttons.

    But Miss. Perfect was not going to let me off that easy. Her normally pale complexion had gone a deep red, and her eyes were bulging. Oops.

    “I’m spoilt!? I’m spoilt!? It may be news to you that your not exactly the most giving person of the year! You know, I’m the only one here who hasn’t grown up with magic, I’ve got a lot more to learn than any of you,” Danielle glared around the room, before carrying on. “I’ve had to deal with that all on my own, and you haven’t exactly been helping, showing off about Quidditch and all that other stupid stuff. So don’t blame me for not taking an interest! Half the time I’ve no idea what any of these things are! And it’s not like you could take the time to help me. Oh no, it’s ‘I’m so good at this’ and ‘That doesn’t matter because I haven’t managed to perfect it yet’.”

    She stood in front of me, breathing heavily. Just daring me to say something. Half-way through that speech, I’d been willing to apologize, but then she’d turned it around, like she always does, and insulted me. Again. I was not going to put up with that.

    “How dare you? This is what I mean! Things aren’t stupid JUST because you don’t know about them, they ARE NOT beneath you just because your not good at them! All of us have tried to help you, maybe it’s because your just to STUPID to understand!” At this point I realized the twins and Kathleen had all scarpered, probably hoping that we’d sort it out on our own. “Do you really think that blaming US will make you seem better? Because if so you are sorely mistaken!” I screamed at her.

    But instead of screaming back she just stood there, speechless. I almost laughed. I’d managed to make that twittering, giggling, idiot shut up! Finally. I smiled, triumphant. But I’d underestimated the power of her pride.

    “Don’t think I don’t know why your acting like this. You’re just scared of being girly. Even your parents wanted you to be a boy, AdriAnne - because they were disappointed in the first one.” She sneered, glad to have got in a parting shot.

    But she’d insulted me to many times - even insulted my brother. My parents were not disappointed in me or in Cedric! Were they? No! I shouldn’t listen to her. So instead I took out my wand. I glint of fear appeared in her wide blue eyes.

    “If I’m such a disappointment to my parents now, imagine what your mother will say when she discovers her perfect little girl isn’t so perfect anymore.”

    But before I could do anything, Kathleen burst in, leading the Prefect, Lily or something. Slowly, I lowered my wand.

  10. #50
    Name: andromeda_tonks
    House: Hufflepuff
    OC: Bethan Cotton
    Word Count: 700
    Warnings: references to self harm, swearing, DH spoilers

    This carries straight on where last week's left off.

    I need to talk to Rose. I made her cry. Whatever crap is going on in my life, I shouldn’t be passing it on to Rose, that’s not fair. Rose, my wonderful, brave, loyal friend, does not deserve that. She deserves a better friend than me. What can I say to her, though? I cut myself because I needed to be in control... She would never understand. Rose’s life is a whirlwind of missed appointments, lost homework and all round confusion. She is a firm believer in the creed of muddling through, and somehow, she manages it.

    I can’t tell her that I won’t cut myself again, because I know that I will. The next time that I lose control, what could I do if I had promised her not to hurt myself? I know the answer, even though it sickens me. I would break my promise. I can’t even really understand why I do this to myself, but I know that I can’t do without it. It is the only thing stopping me from... I don’t know. Going mad. Jumping off the Astronomy Tower. Running away forever.

    I need to see Rose. I can’t just leave her like that, forced from my presence in tears. Or maybe I should. Maybe it would be better if I just broke friends with her. I’m an awful friend for Rose. She’s always so kind, always there for me, and I repay her with harsh words, and harsher actions. She’s better off without me. So why am I wishing that she would come and find me? Why am I longing to go and talk to her? Today I will be selfish. Today I will go and talk to her. Tomorrow I’ll be gone from her life, as though I had never been. That will be best.

    I leave the dormitory, and set off to find Rose. I know instinctively where she will be. Sure enough, as I reach the Cedar of Lebanon by the lake, I can see distinct glints of red between the green leaves.

    “Rose,” I call softly, “it’s me.” She doesn’t respond, but I know that she knows I’m here. I sit down with my back leaning against the tree trunk. “I’m sorry, Rose.”

    “Oh, Bethan,” she say, her voice muffled, so that I know her head is resting on her arms. “Why?”

    “I have decided,” I say, ignoring this, “that we shouldn’t be friends any more.” There is a swish and a crackle of leaves above me as Rose swings down to land on the ground in front of me.

    “Do you hate me, Bethan?”


    “I said, do you hate me?”

    “No! Of course not, how could I?”

    “Well then, why do you want to break friends with me?”

    “Because I hurt you,” I mumble, ashamed all over again of my actions in the dormitory.

    Rose stares at me for a moment, then shouts so loudly I jump, “Hell, Bethan! Don’t you think it would hurt so much more if you abandoned me? Damn it, don’t be so bloody stupid!” This is so unlike Rose that I am shocked into silence. “What’s tears, a burn and a problem that we can work out together compared with you dumping me? I need you, you stupid cow, you’re my best friend!”

    “Rose, I...” I pause, trying to form the difficult words. I know that to say them would be selfish, stupid, completely the wrong thing to do. But I don’t care, because the wrong words feel so right. “I need you, too.”

    “Come on, then.” She flops down beside me. “What are we going to do?”

    “Rose, can we just not worry about that, now?”

    “OK.” She scrambles up again and pulls me to my feet. “How about we go and write to our parents?”


    Rose laughs so hard at my expression it’s hard to believe she was shouting only a minute ago. “Rose, you little toad, come back here!” She flees in mock terror away from me around the lake, and I chase after her, laughing hysterically. “Curse you, Rose!”

    Nothing is solved, and I did the wrong thing. So why do I feel so much better?

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