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Thread: The Brawl ~ WEEK 11 Results and FINAL WEEK~

  1. #11
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    Title: Relearning How to Fly
    Ratings/Warnings: 1st-2nd, fem-slash
    Word Count: 492 words
    Author's Note: This was so hard to cut down. There's so much more I wanted to write, but this will have to do for now.


    On a secluded green on the edge of Hogsmeade, a year after the Battle of Hogwarts, Ginny Weasley met with Cho Chang.

    Cho looked as elegant and beautiful as ever, but she had been scarred by the Battle too. One scar sliced her left eyebrow in two. She held her old Cleansweep, so tightly that her knuckles were white. “Relax,” Ginny urged, placing her hands over Cho’s and squeezing gently.

    “I haven’t flown since the Battle, Ginny.” Cho whispered. “Not since I dueled with Jugson and fell off the walls.”

    “And I promised that you would fly again, play Quidditch again, and I meant it,” Ginny insisted.

    Cho smiled, but it didn’t quite reach her eyes. “Stubborn Gryffindor.”

    Ginny allowed herself a grin. “So your Ravenclaw calculations say that you have to give in to what the stubborn Gryffindor wants, right?”

    Cho closed her eyes and took a deep, shuddering breath before opening her eyes again. “Yeah.”

    Ginny abruptly realized that she was still holding on to Cho’s hands. She let go and picked up her own broomstick and mounted it easily. “Let’s go.” Ginny kicked off and Cho followed a moment later.

    They flew a few careful, low circles. Ginny spiraled higher and higher. Cho followed slowly. “How are you feeling?” Ginny asked, when they reached fifty feet.

    Cho pulled alongside. “Better than I have for a long time.” She grinned, and for a moment, Ginny saw the old Cho, the pretty flirt, who Harry and Cedric had both adored. “I... I think we should go back down though,” she continued, as the smile faded.

    Ginny wanted to insist that they continue upwards until they reached Quidditch playing height but then decided against it. “Alright.”

    After they landed, Cho looked back up at the cloudless sky. “I never thought I would fly again... Thank you,” she added, turning back towards Ginny.

    “Maybe in a few weeks, we can have a Seeker’s Duel,” Ginny said, pulling a Snitch from her pocket.

    Cho frowned slightly. She’s so much prettier when she smiles... she shouldn’t ever frown. As soon as she thought it, Ginny wondered where it had come from. “I thought you preferred playing Chaser,” Cho said.

    “I do. But I can play Seeker, and this way we can play together without needing teammates. And you always played Seeker.”

    Cho’s smile was back, and Ginny felt herself return the smile. “Thanks, Ginny” Cho said, again and hugged her abruptly. Ginny froze and then slowly raised her arms so that she held Cho. It was strange to hug someone slightly shorter than her, but it was nice at the same time. Cho’s hair smelled good, and was soft under her fingertips. When she finally pulled away, Ginny somehow wished that she hadn’t.

    “I’ll see you next week then?”

    “It’s a date,” Cho replied, and then hesitated. After a moment, she leaned forward to give Ginny a quick peck on the cheek before Apparating away.

    Title: Smile
    Ratings/Warnings: 1st-2nd years; character death.
    Word Count: 498

    The sun is high in the sky, a beacon at midday. I stand in the fringe of trees at the edge of the clearing, out of the hot light. He leans against the fence, looking up at the Shrieking Shack. It seems more desolate than usual; he just stares at it, gaze unwavering. He hasn’t noticed me lurking.

    His legs are straight, but his back is bent forwards at a slight angle, his arms balanced, perpendicular, on the strip of timber running the length of the fence. He isn’t wearing robes, just a baggy white t-shirt and frayed jeans.

    He looks plain.

    This realisation annoys me, because Neville Longbottom should not look plain. He’s, without a doubt, one of the bravest people I know, whether he believes it or not. Biting my lip, I take a step and go up to him. He doesn’t react to my approach.

    ‘Hi, Cho,’ he says flatly, with no intonation, glancing at me. I mirror the position he’s adopted, settling my forearms on the top of the fence beside him. The wood digs into my flesh.

    ‘Neville,’ I reply in acknowledgement, smiling. He smiles back, though it lacks any enthusiasm.

    We stay like that for a few minutes. I pretend to look at the Shrieking Shack, but, actually, I continue to examine him from the corner of my eye.

    I think he’s depressed, drained by everything that’s happened -- even though we won the war, everybody has something to be sad about. Some have more to mourn than others. Even Neville, one of the bravest.

    The silence presses in on me; it grows uncomfortable, and I push away from the fence abruptly. Neville looks around in surprise. I smile again, glad to see a real reaction from him. His face is red from the sun, and shiny with sweat.

    ‘Cheer up, Neville,’ I tell him, looking right into his eyes. They’re sad. He makes me feel guilty for having moved on so quickly. When Cedric died, I mourned for months. This time there’s death on a greater scale, but an overall victory. And this time I want to celebrate for those that were lost. I don’t want to be sad. It feels counter-productive.

    ‘I’m fine,’ he says. He gives me a small smile, but it’s not real. It’s not fake either.

    Sympathy rushes through me; I hug him, and he returns it numbly. ‘You should celebrate for them, Neville,’ I tell him. I feel him nod against my hair, and I think I feel moisture, too. His tears don’t make me uncomfortable like his silence did; I’ve been there. I pull back and kiss him on the cheek. ‘You’re a hero, Neville. So are they.’

    ‘I did them proud,’ he whispers. His expression is vacant, and I know he’s talking to himself now. Despite this, I say ’yes’, and back away from him, into the main town, leaving him smiling to himself, leaving him to his thoughts.

    I think I helped him.

    Title: A Little Light
    Ratings/Warnings: 3rd-5th
    Word Count: 499
    Author's Note:



    Neville hid in the corridor until Ginny grew quiet. When her tormentors were gone, he rushed in and found her trying to sit up, mutinous tears on her face. “Ginny.” He helped her up and disillusioned them both before moving out into the open. “Are you all right?”

    “Yeah.”

    They walked in silence for a few minutes.

    “I wish…” She didn’t finish, but Neville guessed it was something to do with Harry.

    “What?” he asked.

    “Just… a change of scenery would be nice. I wish we could go to Hogsmeade. Stupid, I know.”

    He stopped walking and studied her face: she looked so tired, and not just from this new brand of detention. All at once, it came to him; he took her hand and led her up several staircases to the seventh floor.

    “Where are we going?”

    When they reached the spot, he stopped and closed his eyes, concentrating hard. He heard her sharp intake of breath and looked: a door had appeared. He grinned, stepping back to let Ginny enter first.

    “Neville,” she gushed, looking around. “How did you… it’s amazing!”

    It was The Three Broomsticks, truly and exactly like the one in Hogsmeade: the bar, the tables, the fire… everything was the same. Foggy windows revealed a light snow falling outside, just like always. The place was deserted—not even Madame Rosmerta was around.

    Ginny laughed and pulled Neville toward the bar, where she took one of the two Butterbeers from the counter and handed him the other. “Cheers!” She took a long drink of the frothy liquid and beamed at him. “You’re brilliant, you know.” Her eyes were full of fire as she talked about Hogsmeade, and Neville was immensely satisfied to have cheered her so.

    A while later, her voice grew serious. “I wish we could stay here.”

    The energy of the room shifted, and Neville realized how close she was to him. He’d always been attracted to Ginny, but this was different: this time he was sure she felt it, too. He almost said something to stop it happening, but then it was too late. She kissed him first, and he did not have it in him to resist. Her lips were cool and soft, fitting so nicely to his, and when she pressed herself to him more earnestly, he responded in kind.

    After several minutes, he pulled back. “Ginny, we can’t… Harry.”

    “He isn’t here. And we aren’t together now, anyway.”

    “I like you, you know.” His voice was hoarse. “I always have.”

    “You’re my best friend. No one else will ever understand what this has been like.” She kissed him again. “Please… let’s stay a while longer.”

    In response, his hand found her waist and he buried the other in her hair as he kissed her, this time with less restraint. They clung to each other, exploring… finding comfort… and Neville pressed down the guilt that fought for the surface.

    They’d shared so much darkness already... why not a little light?

    Title: Old Friends
    Ratings/Warnings: 3rd/5th, sexual situations
    Word Count: 498

    As always these days, Cho had hung back in the changing rooms after the match. She rarely wanted to talk to anyone, and quite enjoyed those moments of solitude.


    How different the solitude now was to that then. Now, only days later, she felt nervous, expectant, even scared. The person she was waiting for – would they come? Had it just been another trick?


    Unexpectedly, the door opened. She turned around to see a girl, slightly younger than Cho, slenderly built, with dark hair.


    Cho applied some of her raspberry-flavoured chapstick – just to protect her lips from the cold.


    “You’re in the wrong changing rooms, Pansy. And Draco wasn’t even there – didn’t he tell you?”

    “No, I– I knew that. Of course I knew that. I just thought he might–”

    “Well, he’s not here. So if you don’t mind...”



    A figure was walking towards her; the snow was falling in such thick flakes that it was hard to make anything out, yet Cho found that her heart was beating unreasonably fast.

    Finally, she realised that it really was her. It was hard to believe that she had actually meant it, that she hadn’t intended for Cho to make a fool of herself.


    For a moment, Cho thought she had been a bit too snappy, but when Pansy returned to her usual self, those doubts vanished in an instant.

    “Oh, sure, Chang, I’ll leave you to your moping about. It’s all you seem to have done for the past year. No boys around to listen now, are there?” Without waiting for an answer, Pansy turned back around to leave.



    Pansy was close enough for Cho to see the nervous expression on her face, her eyes that darted this way and that, and the snowflakes that got caught in her dark hair. Almost hastily, Cho pulled Pansy close and placed her lips on hers. Pansy responded deeply to Cho’s tentative nibs, and soon, the entire snow-covered village around them had disappeared.


    She had her hand on the doorknob when Cho said, “I haven’t forgotten, you know.” Pansy froze. “We used to have lots of fun back then,” Cho continued. “Before all of this started. Boys, I mean, and all the pressure. I liked being able to just talk to you. I still see you around town a lot at home.”


    This was it, Cho thought as she ran her hands up Pansy’s softly curving side beneath her cloak. It hadn’t been Harry’s insensitivity, or all the attention Cedric got from other girls. It had been Pansy. Her full, sweet lips, those delicious hips, the way her body arched against Cho’s when they kissed...


    The tension in the room became almost unbearable. Suddenly, Pansy spun around and, her eyes fixed on the floor, spoke. “I’m going to Hogsmeade on the next weekend. I’m going there alone. Draco never has time anymore.”


    “I’m glad you showed up,” she said.
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  2. #12
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    Title: Against the Wall
    Ratings/Warnings: 3rd-5th to be safe though only very mild.
    Word Count: 499
    Author's Note: I've placed this on the timeline after Luna's disappearance at Christmas but before Ginny is forced to leave Hogwarts at Easter. I couldn't find evidence to suggest when the Hogsmeade curfew came into effect so I decided that it wasn't in place yet.

    “Neville, are you sure about this?” Ginny’s voice was barely a whisper.

    “It’s our only chance,” he breathed back. “We’ve been waiting months for a night like this, and now we can be certain there’ll be no one guarding the gates. You heard Carrow – they’ve all been called back. We’re lucky that Fred and George could get us the supplies on such short notice.”

    They walked through the grounds in silence, slowing down as they approached the gates. While they were almost certain that the path would be clear, they had learnt too much that year just to assume it would be safe.

    Their luck held and they passed through the gates and out into the open -to freedom.

    Neville took a deep breath. “We did it!” he whispered. “We actually did it!”

    She threw her arms around him. “I can’t believe we’re out of there.”

    For a moment they stood enjoying the feeling and she knew they both wondering the same thing – they would probably never have this chance again; they could leave and not come back – join the real fight, on the outside. The thought had gone as quickly as it came. They had to go back –the others were relying on them.

    “Come on.” Neville took her hand and began to guide her down the path to Hogsmeade, until finally the village came into view.

    “This is where it gets really tricky,” said Neville stopping for a minute to survey the route ahead. “Just stick to the shadows and we should be okay.”

    The walk through the village was nerve-wracking. They did their best to stay in the shadows and alleyways but every so often they would have to break out into the open. Suddenly as they broke away from the shadows, they heard footsteps heading towards them. Quick as a flash, Neville grabbed Ginny and pushed her flat against the wall of the alley, his body pressed flat against hers.

    She could feel his heart beating a mile a minute, almost as fast as her own. Neither of them dared breathe as they waited for whoever it was to pass. Their eyes locked, and they knew the punishment if they were caught would be so much worse than just another detention.

    Neville pressed himself further into her, as if hoping to make them both invisible. Their hearts continued to race and then without warning, and without either really knowing who had made the first move, their lips met and they plunged all their tension and fear into each other. Ginny wrapped her arms around his shoulders. He moved his hand up to her hair, winding his fingers through it as they sank deeper into the kiss.

    At that moment, a bright wand light burst into the dark alleyway, causing them to freeze in place.

    “If it isn’t Weasley in the arms of Longbottom. What will Potter say?” The slimy voice of the headmaster emerged from behind the light. “I think you’d better come with me.”
    Title: A Leap of Faith
    Ratings/Warnings: 1st/2nd year/AU*
    Word Count: 437
    Author's Note: Events take place during “Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire.”
    *Apparently, Saturday, December 19, 1994 would have been a Hogsmeade weekend, if the term hadn't ended the day before, so took a liberty on the time-line, for starters.

    Trevor sat nestled in the comfort of Neville's left robe pocket, unsettled by the conversation he was forced to overhear.

    “Man,” Ron said, sullenly, sucking back a huge swig of his butterbeer. “Less than a week until the dance, and none of us have a date.”

    “No real prospects here, mate,” Trevor's Neville said sadly, as Trevor shimmied up to the top of the pocket, moving the side of Neville's robe to get a look around.

    “I'm gonna look a bigger git that you two put together,” Harry said sadly, slowly tearing off the label of his butterbeer. “For the first time in the history of the Tri-Wizard Tournament, they've found a competitor so lame he couldn't land a date.”

    Trevor managed to leverage himself inside of his pocket, hanging by a bare toenail, as he searched for a possible date for his Neville.

    He scanned the room, depending on his specially-bred, ultra-sensitive hearing to pinpoint the perfect female for his Neville.

    “I can't wait,” some slightly attractive blonde human gushed, “Until two o'clock to pick up my new robes. It's too bad, Ginny, that no one asked you.”

    “Yeah,” Ginny said, slightly sarcastically, “ I'm such a troll I'll be leaving Hogwarts before the Yule Ball.”

    Trevor looked at the table, where the two girls sat, as he shook his head and blinked twice, making sure that what he heard was true.

    Ginny Weasley was available. Trevor had felt remiss that he hadn't been more proactive in his attempts to help his Neville secure a date to the ball. Oh, sure, the furtive jumps as he'd lunged into an attractive girl's oatmeal, or his forays into being “found” in some anonymous females dormitory room had led to nothing, but, now he had real prey. Ginny Weasley, yet.

    “It's almost on two,” the clearly lesser human female began, “Gladrags Wizardwear should have finished my alterations...”

    Trevor somehow managed to fling himself from that feeble foothold he maintained on Neville's pocket and land perfectly, dead center in the middle of Ginny Weasley's girlfriend's drink. Diluted, pinkish liquid seemed to hover momentarily, then crash downward, spraying everyone at the table in sticky, girlish goo.
    .~.

    Trevor nestled triumphantly in his pocket as his Neville enjoyed the Yule Ball. He felt the sharp intake of breath as Neville entered the hall, escorting a great beauty. He found himself snoozing as the couple danced through the night. Perhaps it wasn't a love that lasts, but it was the best night that either one of these special humans had ever had.
    Title: A Not Love Story in Four Parts
    Ratings/Warnings: First years
    Word Count: 489
    Author's Note:

    All men have defining moments in life. Neville Longbottom had four:

    One. They'd been five years old. He would never forget the black-haired girl with the pug nose who pushed him to the floor at Fortescue's Ice Cream Parlour. He'd scraped his hands, and cried; she had called him a silly toad, stepped over him, and ordered a hot-fudge sundae. He left the shoppe in tears and a wounded pride; his grandmother had scolded him afterwards for letting a Parkinson push him around. Then she reminded him once more that he was a Longbottom, by Merlin's pants, act like it! By the time she had cleaned up his scrape, the girl was long gone, but Neville would never forget the air of self-importance the young girl projected and wished he could have an ounce of that self-righteous behavior to claim as his own.

    Two. They'd been eleven years old, and bumped into each other on the Hogwarts Express. As he stood in the corridor asking people if they'd seen his toad, Neville couldn't help the feeling of déjà vu when Pansy pushed him against a carriage compartment, demanding he 'move you plebian' with a great sense of entitlement. He'd blushed and stuttered, and scrambled to move out of the way. Then he'd become angry with himself because what would his grandmother say if she'd seen this display? Neville wished even more ardently than before, that he could carry himself a bit of more self-confidence and do his grandmother proud.

    Three. They'd been seventeen; it was the Battle of Hogwarts. She stood and announced to everyone gathered at the Great Hall that they turn Harry over to Voldemort. He'd stood there, and watched, conflicted, as this girl, whom he'd known his entire life, had the audacity to state her mind, with no regard for others, only considering her self-preservation. But by the age of seventeen, Neville had learned that Pansy Parkinson was a lot of things: arrogant, proud, entitled, and scared. Scared because her world was falling apart, and didn't know her place anymore. And for once, Neville could claim that he had a much more defined sense of self than Pansy Parkinson.

    Four. They'd been twenty-three. Neville was a professor at Hogwarts; Pansy had opened a small tea house in Hogmeade after Madam Puddifoot closed hers. He'd become a regular client on weekends, and they shared a congenial relationship of business-owner and customer. One day she smirked at him and said, "I hated you growing up, just so you know, you knew your place in the world, it made me angry." Neville laughed at her words, and the scowl on her face.

    And Neville learned that some times, it's not the people closest to you who define you, but the ones who challenge your sense of self.

    "Ms. Parkinson, if you have a moment to spare, I'd like to tell you a story of when we first met."
    Title: Room 203
    Ratings/Warnings: 3rd-5th years; sexual situations
    Word Count: 308
    Author's Note:

    When he sees her again, she is wearing the same scarf. She walks slowly down the lane and into the village unaware of his gaze. He sighs a soft sigh and follows her. His eyes follow the scarf, the washed pink thread. His eyes pull it from her neck, from her chest, from her skin. His eyes pull off the scarf and somewhere in his mind he can feel it in his hands. He can remember the way it fell to the floor of Room 203 in The Three Broomsticks, forgotten.

    When he sees her again, her hair clings to her neck with the wind as it did with her sweat. And he can close his eyes, and he can remember that skin on skin, and that salt fire burning. She enters the Post Office and he wonders what she is sending and to whom. A brief want for it to be him flickers like the snow falling soft, falling wet, falling down. She leaves the Post Office and heads to Scrivenshaft’s.

    When he sees her again, her lips are blue, chapped from the cold. She scowls into the wind and he almost laughs. It is the same scowl. The same scowl with the same scarf with the same hair plastered to her neck. He wants her to turn, to see him, to scowl at him. Again.

    Afterwards, as he does up the zip of his trousers and as she pulls up her stockings, they speak.

    “Well.”

    “Yes?”

    “Can I see you again?”

    “I’m not sure that’s a good idea.”

    “Why? Not enough Potter for you? Not enough Dig-”

    She scowls. She turns away. The hair is still plastered to her neck.

    “I’m sorry.”

    “Goodbye, Seamus.”

    “Cho...


    When he sees her again, he wonders if it means more to him than it should.

    And then she turns around.
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  3. #13
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    Title: This Seat Taken?
    Ratings/Warnings: 1st-2nd years/Slash
    Word Count: 500
    Author's Note: It was REALLY hard to cut this down to 500 words.

    Neville settled into a corner of the Three Broomsticks to sip his butterbeer. There was a poster on the wall of all the Death Eaters who had escaped Azkaban the year prior. The hairs on the back of his neck prickled as Neville looked into the eyes of Bellatrix Lestrange. He knew it was only a photograph, but all the same…

    “This seat taken?”

    Neville’s thoughts were interrupted as he looked up at Seamus Finnigan. He felt the back of his neck heat up, and was quite glad that his scarf was covering it. Then he realized how ridiculous that was – why should he be embarrassed that Seamus had asked about a chair? He probably wanted it for another table…

    “N-no, you can take it,” stuttered Neville.

    Seamus pulled it out, sat down, and began to sip his butterbeer in silence.

    For some reason, Neville felt a thrill as Seamus did this; it meant they would have to exchange at least another few words before leaving the village and returning to school.

    “So, Seamus,” Neville began in a falsely cheery voice, trying hard to ignore their gloomy environment. “How are you?

    Seamus turned toward him, and Neville immediately realized what a stupid question that was. Voldemort had taken over, and everybody was scared out of their wits. Seamus grimaced. “I’m about as good as anyone else here.”

    Neville suddenly realized how close Seamus was sitting. If he adjusted his grip on his butterbeer just a little, their arms would be touching…

    He was overcome in an instant with a thought that had never occurred to him before, and was thoroughly embarrassed by it. This time, Neville couldn’t hide the flush that crept its way up his cheeks, and found himself once again staring determinedly at the poster of the escaped prisoners.

    “My parents,” whispered Neville, barely saying the words out loud.

    “What?” Seamus asked, confused.

    “My parents,” repeated Neville, shaking. “Those people – they tortured my parents.” He wasn’t sure why he was telling Seamus this, but it felt good to tell somebody. “They’re in St. Mungo’s now.”

    Seamus was silent for a while as he took this in. Neville worried if he should have told him. Then, Seamus moved his hand so it rested on top of Neville’s, looking him right in the eyes. Neville felt a wild fluttering in his stomach.
    “One day, this’ll all be over, Neville,” Seamus said with finality.

    Before he knew what he was doing, Neville leaned over and kissed Seamus on the mouth. It only lasted half a second; for Neville, that half-second had been magical – in the theoretical sense. But then he looked over at Seamus, saw the confusion on his face, and realized what he had done.

    Horrified, and more embarrassed than he had ever been in his life (and that was saying something), Neville stood up quickly, knocking his chair over, and raced out of the pub, leaving his butterbeer and a very confused Seamus at the table in the corner.

    Title: I Wish I Knew How
    Ratings/Warnings: 1st-2nd years, none
    Word Count: 500
    Author's Note: I hated this at first, but then this pairing sort of flowed out.

    ‘It’s a wonder the Carrows let us out at all,’ Neville said as he and Ginny walked along the snowy Hogsmeade street.

    ‘I know,’ she replied. ‘I don’t expect it to last, though. Not after what we’ve got planned.’

    She giggled to herself at the thought of the tins of magical paint that were hidden under her bed this very moment, a present from Fred and George. How it had managed to slip through the security, she didn’t know. Probably heavily disguised as something or other.

    As they walked along the high street, they saw that, in addition to Zonkos, several of the shops had been boarded up. They stood in gloomy shadows next to their brightly lit counterparts.

    ‘Starting to look like a ghost town, isn’t it?’ Neville murmured, looking at Ginny. She looked up at him, and saw him quickly turn his head back to the row of shops to their left.

    She and Neville had begun to spend a lot more time together this year, as, along with Luna, they became the leaders of the resistance against the Carrows. Ginny noticed that this was not the first time she had caught him looking at her. Neville was not the shy, weedy boy who had asked her to the Yule Ball three years ago. Leadership was having a positive impact on him, and he was noticeably more confident and forthright that he had been before. Sometimes she found herself staring back.

    They walked along the high street in silence together, their footsteps falling perfectly in time. Ginny felt her body tense as Neville wordlessly, and without a look, felt for her hand and grasped it. She allowed herself to step closer to him and return the pressure, an internal battle raging inside her.

    Harry was gone, and there was no knowing when he might return, or if he ever would. She knew she loved him, yet here Neville was, he was kind and they had so much in common now as fighters in the internal battle at Hogwarts. Harry could never understand that. Harry would always be fighting more danger, going through more perils than she ever would. Could he understand just how hard this year at Hogwarts really was, when he was risking his life doing Merlin knows what? She knew Neville would.

    They had come to a stop now, outside Gladrags Wizardwear, and turned to face each other. She looked at Neville, willing her doubts to vanish as he leant in towards her.

    ‘Neville, I’m sorry,’ she burst out, he inches away from her face. ‘I can’t. I wish there wasn’t anything complicated about this, I do, but I have to wait for Harry. I’m sorry.’

    He dropped her hand and stepped away, and Ginny thought she saw a fleeting look of pain pass through his eyes.

    ‘It’s okay,’ he replied. ‘I understand.’

    And with that, they strode off again, each keeping a casual distance away from one another, towards the warmth of the Three Broomsticks.
    Title: Whirlwind
    Ratings/Warnings: 1st/2nd Years — None
    Word Count: 490
    Author's Note: The missing words in Viktor’s speech was done intentionally. Imagine it with the accent, and it’ll make sense, I promise.

    When he arrived at the Weasley wedding reception at Three Broomsticks, she was just as beautiful as she was the night of the Yule Ball. Viktor could scarcely believe how much she had changed from the Hermione he remembered from a decade before. But when he thought of that same shy smile which had robbed him of sleep for days, he felt the urge to speak to her.

    Viktor had trouble pushing his way toward her through the mass of humanity, and he was almost bowled over when someone collided with his arm. He looked over to see who had almost knocked him off balance, only to be gobsmacked by the one woman in the room who could usurp Hermione as the loveliest. Her raven hair shone in the candlelight, and he had to fight the urge to reach out and touch it.

    His sense of breeding reasserting itself, Victor bowed to her. “My lady.”

    She flushed at his salutation and said, “Sorry. I didn’t mean to run you over.” Hesitantly, she added, “You’re Viktor Krum.”

    Da,” he said before amending, “Yes.” Smiling sheepishly, he explained, “I haven’t spoken English for long time.”

    “It’s okay,” she replied, holding out her hand. “I’m Cho. Cho Chang.”

    “Diggory’s girlfriend?” Viktor asked, curious as to why he hadn’t remembered such an important piece of information. However, as soon as the question left his lips, he wished he could’ve taken it back. “I’m sorry. You probably not vant to talk about that.”

    Cho sighed. “It’s fine. It was a long time ago.”

    Relieved, Viktor allowed himself to take in the far more subtle differences in Cho. She looked much the same as she had back then, only her eyes seemed far sadder than they had been, no doubt she still bearing the burden of Diggory’s death that she had just dismissed.

    And she was far too beautiful for so much sorrow. Her hand still in his, Viktor said, “Vill you dance with me?”

    “I’ve got two left feet.”

    “And I’ve got three. It doesn’t matter.”

    With a giggle at his comment and a sigh of relent, Cho let Viktor lead her to the nearest open spot on the dance floor. They managed to quietly stumble their way through a waltz, though it was far more his doing than hers, but he was infinitely more surprised when she agreed to a second dance. And a third.

    Breathless, they made their way out into the streets of Hogsmeade. Cho laughed as Viktor twirled her into his arms, but that chuckle melted into a sigh. Pulling her close to him almost instinctually, he lowered his lips to hers. When their mouths parted, he already missed the contact. Viktor wanted so badly to tell her, but he couldn’t think of the words. By the time his brain pieced together the correct English phrase, Cho had backed away, eyes shining with tears, and left him standing in the street.

    Title:More Important
    Ratings/Warnings: 3rd-5th years/ mild profanity/ sexual situations/ slash
    Word Count: 487


    More Important

    Seamus and Neville were standing in the cold, round the back of some pub, waiting for someone who may or may not be able to help them illicitly enter and leave Hogwarts. Neville was on edge, ears pricked for the slightest noise.

    Seamus picked up a twig and began to draw in the snow. He’d never been good at drawing, unlike Dean. He hoped that Dean was all right, wherever he was. He couldn’t be worse off than they were, he thought, looking up at Neville and feeling his heartbeat suddenly increase.

    Neville’s face was hard and his eyes old and strong. Suddenly, and it was very sudden, he was––hot. Seamus found himself grinning. That word sounded wrong, out here in the snow, where he could see Neville’s hot breath hit the air.

    A portrait had told Neville someone would meet him here. Seamus thought it was a trap but Neville suspected it was a message from Harry and so insisted on going. Seamus had to go with him. Then, if the teachers caught them away from the groups they were supposed to stay in, the punishment would be divided between them.

    They were waiting for Harry. Seamus felt a sudden surge of jealousy. He liked and respected Harry and had never felt jealous of him. But Neville talked about him with such pride and respect. Damn it, Seamus thought, standing up straight.

    “See someone?” Neville said, sharply.

    “Have you ever kissed someone?” Seamus had always been rather blunt but even he winced slightly as he spoke.

    Neville’s mouth opened in shock and he looked like the old, awkward Neville. He shook his head, as if to forget what Seamus had just said.

    “I haven’t, but there are more important things at hand.”

    Seamus stepped in front of Neville and kissed him. It wasn’t that gentle, Seamus thought later, and had been pretty clumsy. He stepped back, waiting for Neville to speak. When Neville just stared at him in wide-eyed silence, Seamus felt words he hadn’t thought about falling quickly from his lips.

    “I’m sorry, I’m sorry. But since you started playing the hero and leading us and fighting and everything I can’t help it!”

    Neville looked scared. Neville didn’t get scared. Neville had broken into Snape’s office without even breaking sweat. With an awkward gesture, Neville stepped towards Seamus, whose heart rate quickened. But then Neville’s gaze was caught by something over Seamus’ shoulder and he said, with a slight frown, “Aberfoth?”

    Seamus turned and saw a man he vaguely recognised walking towards them.

    “He own’s the Hog’s Head!” Neville said, excitedly. “If he can get us a way into the castle which the Carrows don’t know about-” Neville walked towards the man.

    “Yeah. It’ll be grand,” Seamus said to himself, watching Neville greet the older man as an equal. Yes. Neville had more important things to do.
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  4. #14
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    Title: Of Drool-worthy Perfectness
    Ratings/Warnings: 3rd-5th Years, Sexual situations
    Word Count: 496
    Author's Note: I do believe that it is entirely plausible that the shallow protagonist could do this. =P

    As he enters the Three Broomsticks, a crisp summer breeze seems to blow in with him, cutting through the biting chillness of the winter evening. He is tall, his sandy hair ruffled just slightly, framing his face—a face with features so perfect, they could have been chiselled by one of the masters of the Renaissance, out of the purest marble. His jumper sits lightly on his body, rippling muscles visible taut in his arms—toned after years of Quidditch practice.

    Behind him enters his friend, Dean Thomas. They throw themselves onto a couple of chairs, and order drinks for themselves. Seamus looks around, his eyes of liquid amber resting on each table and face for just a second before moving on.

    “Mate,” says Dean Thomas. “Seamus, what’s wrong?” Seamus’ eyes are oddly unfocused as he stares at a table. “What’s going on?” Dean says again, shaking his friend.

    “Wha—what?” asks Seamus, pulled jarringly out of his reverie. “Dean, I think I’m in love.”

    Dean’s eyebrow shoots up. “What?” he asks sceptically. “With whom is this, then?”

    “I’m… I’m in love with Pansy, Dean. Pansy Parkinson. I know it is forbidden, for I am a Gryffindor and she a Slytherin, and the enmity between our houses decrees that I must not indulge in a liaison with her, but I cannot help myself, Dean! I could willingly spend hours gazing at her, immersing myself in her aphrodisiac features, simply waiting for her to catch my eye. She is Aphrodite born on Earth, and I yearn to be her Adonis. Dean, and I would do anything to have her!”

    “She’s fat, Seamus. She’s fat and she’s a woolly-minded bint. Are you out of your mind?”

    “Don’t you dare call her fat! If this is insanity, I revel in it, for sanity is a small price to pay for true vision! What shall I do to convey my feelings to her, Dean?” Dean sighs, and rolls his eyes.

    “Go get her, Seamus. Go get her.” And Seamus gets up, a slight pink entering his cheeks as he makes across the room to the Slytherins. Pansy looks up from her drink noncommittally. Seamus bends across the table, hardly minding the others, grabs her by her tie, and kisses her on her lips.

    “I love you, Pansy,” he declares.

    “Seamus… I love you too,” she says, and joins him on his side, and together, they make for one of the bathrooms. Once inside, Pansy wastes no time pinning Seamus to the wall, pulling his jumper off with her teeth and straddling him. A moan escapes his lips—

    “Miss Parkinson, I would be much indebted to you if you would stop daydreaming and return to your Charms work! That frog isn’t going to summon itself, you know? Practice the moment—accio!” From the other end of the room, Seamus grins, hearing the squeaky voice of the Charms professor, and Pansy sighs—she will get him one day, she will.

    Title: On a February Day
    Ratings/Warnings:1st-2nd years; mention of canon character death
    Word Count: 499
    Author's Note: I don't for a moment believe this happened, but I do think it's possible.

    "Oh! You're Viktor Krum."

    Viktor looked up with a sigh, prepared to contend with another fan. To his surprise, he recognized the girl. "You are the girl from the task in the lake," he said. "What are you doing here?"

    She laughed a little bit; it sounded forced and slightly watery, and there were tear stains on her cheeks. "I go to Hogwarts! What are you doing here?"

    "My team, we are in England for some Quidditch games. I thought, it is Valentine's Day, maybe I will try to see Herm-own-ninny."

    The girl's reddened eyes narrowed at the mention of Hermione. "She's busy with Harry right now, I hear."

    Viktor raised his eyebrows. "You think she would not want to see me?"

    She shrugged, acting very nonchalant for how upset she looked. "Did she know you were coming?"

    "I sent an owl, but I think it will be too late."

    "Oh, it's very possible she will slot you in later," she said bitterly. Viktor wished he could remember her name; it seemed a little late to ask now.

    "Are you all right?" he asked hesitantly.

    "Brilliant!" she exclaimed while her eyes filled with tears again. "I just need to buy a quill, if you'll excuse me." She turned and started surveying the Writing Implements section, wiping her cheeks.

    Viktor did miss Hermione, a lot. But if she was indeed on a date with Harry, he didn't want to intrude; he liked Harry, and trusted him with a girl as special as Hermione. So he got up and followed the crying girl.

    "I am sorry that you're sad," he said. "It is because of Harry? Or Cedric?" he added.

    To his surprise, she turned and threw herself in his arms. "No one knows what it's like!" she sobbed. "He was k-killed and I'm here, and Harry won't talk about it, no one will. I don't know how I can keep going!"

    Viktor wasn't sure what to do; beautiful women sometimes tried to throw themselves at him, but usually they weren't crying. He decided that she was making a scene, though, so he walked them out of the store and into an alley.

    "I am not so good at talking," he said finally. "But I will listen." He stroked her hair and murmured Bulgarian to her until she quieted, then he listened.

    After she was done, she managed a smile. "I can tell what Hermione sees in you," she said. "Thank you." She leaned up and kissed his cheek; he felt the tingle of her tears against his skin and surprised himself by taking her chin and planting a gentle kiss on her mouth.

    "It is all right to be sad," he told her, the taste of salt on his tongue.

    She nodded, then disentangled herself. "Good luck against Pride of Portree!" she said, sounding more cheerful than she ever had.

    Hermione wouldn't have known that. Viktor smiled and waved as the girl walked away.
    Title: How the Mighty Have Fallen
    Ratings/Warnings: 3rd-5th; alcohol abuse and sexual situations
    Word Count: 439
    Author's Note: I had far too much fun with these two. If I'm not careful, I think they may demand a one shot!

    "What's a girl like you doing in a place like this?"

    It was the sort of phrase that once would have tumbled out of Seamus Finnigan's mouth as a glib, chat-up line, but not anymore. There was a dark edge to his voice, angry and a little threatening.

    Pansy Parkinson looked up from her drink and gave him a tight-lipped smile that didn't reach her eyes. "You mean what's a Death Eater's daughter doing allowed out in public with the normal people?" Her tone mocked him, but it was too subtle for him to be able to call her out on it. She was calculated as ever.

    "Pretty much," he said, returning her non-smile (it was more of a snarl), as he nodded at Rosmerta for a drink. A double Firewhisky appeared in front of him as he slammed the right coins down on the bar. There were no words needed between him and the landlady: she knew his drink and he knew the cost. It was an increasingly regular transaction between them.

    "I'm staying here," Pansy said. The cool detachment was gone and there was something quieter and stiller in its place. If he didn't know better, he'd say she sounded vulnerable.

    "Did daddy going to prison mean you had to sell up, so the little princess is left without a mansion?" There was no kindness or sympathy in the harsh laugh that bubbled from him. It burnt like the spirit that he tossed down his throat.

    "Pretty much."

    Seamus found himself riled by the deliberate mimicry. Angry words spilt from him like bitter bile. "Living in a pub: how the mighty have fallen!"

    "You don't seem so mighty yourself, getting drunk on your own in the afternoon! Shouldn't you be out rounding up Death Eaters or saving the world or something?" Pansy spun on her barstool to look at him. Her eyes searched him for answers he didn't have, and he crumpled into the seat next to her.

    "Since the Battle, it's just been ... I just want to feel something." He flapped a hand loosely towards his empty glass, because even to feel drunk was to feel something.

    He didn't know where the words had come from. He certainly hadn't meant to say them - edjit that he was with his mouth running away from him like always. He hadn't mean to give her more ammunition to mock him.

    But she didn't. Instead, she said, "Me too," as she stood up. Then before he had chance to respond or even realise what was happening, she'd leant over, kissed him full on the mouth and walked away.

    Title: A Friendly Date
    Ratings/Warnings: 1st-2nd years None
    Word Count: 499
    Author's Note:

    Being in Hogsmeade wasn’t really what Seamus had in mind that day; he’d rather be up in his dormitory, doing almost anything else.

    Stupid Seamus, he thought to himself as he stumbled over his robes, trying to smoothen his sandy-brown hair. Why did he have to ask Cho out on a date, anyways? Well, technically it wasn’t really a date; he had found her sitting all alone near the lake, seeming really gloomy, and he was just trying to cheer her up. Finding nothing better to say, he asked her if she wanted to go to Hogsmeade with her the next weekend. Cho had seemed quite happy about the offer, and she accepted.

    Back then, Seamus had been quite glad. Now he was cursing himself.

    Then again, he thought, how bad could it be? It was just a friendly date, nothing more. And besides, he was in his sixth year. He’d dated a few girls already, so why would this be any different?

    Cho was waiting for him near the gate. Upon reaching her, Seamus gave a little smile. For some reason, he felt really nervous seeing her. Maybe it was just because she looked simply stunning dressed up like that.

    “Hi,” she greeted him, smiling sweetly. Seamus felt his stomach give a back-flip. Snap out of it Seamus! he told himself.

    “Hey,” he replied back tentatively, trying to smile back.

    They started walking along the path towards the village in silence. Once or twice Seamus cleared his throat, but other than that neither spoke a word.

    “So…” Seamus said after a while, trying to make conversation. “Where would you like to go?”

    “Um… the Three Broomsticks?” she suggested, looking at him with her sparkling, black eyes. “I haven’t been there in a long time.” Seamus couldn’t help but agree.

    Once they were in the Three Broomsticks, Seamus got them a table and ordered some Butterbeer. They sat down together.

    “So how are things with you now?” Seamus asked, looking at her. He tried not to stare, but it was hard not to. She was very pretty.

    “I’m quite good, you know. Much better that before. And… thanks for bringing me here, Seamus,” she said, not looking up. “After what happened last year with Marietta, no one really wanted to speak to me. I’m glad you asked me to come with you.” She looked up, and he was surprised to see her eyes looking glazy.

    Seamus felt himself going red. “Don’t mention it,” he said hastily, smiling. “I thought you really needed someone to talk to. Besides, you’re a nice person; I don’t know why anyone won’t like you!”

    Cho seemed really cheerful after that. They talked for quite a long time that day. Seamus could feel himself getting engrossed in her, and he could tell Cho felt likewise. He spent the entire day with her, and they parted that evening with plans to meet up again soon. Seamus felt he’d finally found the girl he was looking for.
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  5. #15
    Wizengamot Hufflepuff
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    Title: Damaged
    Ratings/Warnings: 1st-2nd years, a bit of angst
    Word Count: 498
    Author's Note: Nada.

    The snow spiraled down slowly outside, settling on the coat sleeves and hats of passerby. Seamus Finnegan sat at one of the tables by the window of the Three Broomsticks, nursing a Butterbeer and watching people go by.

    It was Valentine’s Day. Once more, Seamus was in Hogsmeade alone, without a girlfriend. Of course.

    Madam Rosmerta appeared at the table, carrying a pitcher. “Can I get you anything, dear?” she asked.

    “No, thanks,” Seamus said impassively, and after a moment Rosmerta left.

    Seamus heaved a deep sigh and knocked the rest of his drink back. He stood, bundled himself up in coat, hat, gloves and scarf, and strode out into the snow.

    He tried Honeyduke’s, Zonko’s, and even the Shrieking Shack, but he couldn’t keep still in one place. Finally, he settled for walking along the main street of Hogsmeade.

    Seamus had made two circuits of the street and was starting on a third when she appeared, striding down a side street with her black hair streaming out behind her. Her head was down, and she wasn’t looking where she was going at all. Seamus knew that look. “Cho!” he called.

    She stopped, turning to face him just as he reached her. “Er – hi. Sean, isn’t it?”

    “Seamus,” he corrected her. He noticed her eyes were red, and her eyes were still shining with tears. “Are you okay?”

    Cho shrugged. “I suppose. I just ended it with Harry.”

    “I’m sorry,” Seamus said. Then, since that didn’t seem like quite enough, he added, “He can be a bit of a tosser sometimes.”

    “You’re telling me,” Cho laughed bitterly. Here, with the snow swirling around her and the tear tracks on her face, she looked like a mourning angel.

    “Can I buy you a Butterbeer?” Seamus asked on a sudden impulse.

    Cho smiled slightly. “Thanks, Seamus, but you don’t want to get involved. I’m too damaged.”

    Seamus shrugged. “Maybe I do. And one drink is hardly getting involved.”

    Cho smiled at him. “Okay, then. I’d like that.”

    Valentine’s Day, Three Years Later

    Seamus walked in to the Three Broomsticks. He took off his coat and hat, then sat on one of the stools at the bar. He glanced down the bar and froze, shocked. Cho Chang sat there, wrapped in a cardigan far too large for her. If anything, she’d lost weight since leaving Hogwarts, and her hair was cut in a choppy bob. However, that had not diminished her beauty in the least.

    “Hi, Cho,” he said quietly. In the nearly empty bar, she heard him clearly. She turned and saw him.

    “Hi, Seamus,” she replied. “How are you?”

    Seamus smiled wryly, remembering a Valentine’s Day long ago. “Damaged.”

    Cho nodded. “I think we all are.”

    They sat in silence a moment. Finally, Seamus asked, “Do you want to go to dinner sometime?”

    She slowly nodded. “I’d like that.”

    “Tonight?” he pressed.

    She smiled. “Okay.”

    They stood up, mechanically put on their coats, and stepped out into the snow.

    Title: Love Hurts
    Ratings/Warnings: 1st-2nd years; none
    Word Count: 499
    Author's Note: Meant to go for requited love, but the bunny pulled me in another direction. xD

    Seamus sighed and walked back into Hogsmeade, reluctant to go home even though Dean had gone back up to the castle. He was living with his mum still, and their fights about Seamus not going back to re-do his NEWT year hadn’t stopped when Hogwarts had started. If anything, they seemed to have become more frequent as the months passed. His mum wanted him to make something more of himself than some anonymous clerk at the Ministry, and without NEWTs, that was going to be hard. Seamus didn’t mind, himself, and he told her as much, but this only seemed to annoy her more.

    A flash of bright red hair caught his eye, and he turned his head to see Ginny Weasley standing a few feet away. He stopped and called out, “Hey, Ginny!”

    She jumped and turned to look at him. Recognition dawned, and she said, “Hey, Seamus.”

    Seamus stared. Ginny didn’t look like her usual self at all. He had never seen her look so…defeated, not even during that last terrible year at Hogwarts. She always had the upper hand in life. It was one of the many things he admired about her.

    Where were her friends? He looked around for Luna or Neville or someone, but Ginny seemed to have come to Hogsmeade alone. He cleared his throat, suddenly nervous. “It’s, um, been a long time. How’s Hogwarts?”

    “It’s fine,” she said automatically, not really looking at Seamus. “Look, Seamus, I think I’m going to go back up to the castle. It’s nice seeing you, but I’ve got homework.”

    She turned to leave, but, without thinking, he reached out and grabbed her arm. She shook it off and turned back, looking angry. As she opened her mouth, Seamus said quickly, “Sorry, that was dumb. It’s just…something’s obviously wrong. I just wanted you to know…I mean, we were in the DA together. If you need someone to talk to…”

    She shook her head. “It’s okay, really.” She caught his eye, and smiled sadly. “It’s not because you were in the DA, is it? The concern?”

    “What?” asked Seamus, taken aback. She gave him a wry look, and he shrugged, suddenly uncomfortable. He didn’t know how, but she’d rumbled him. And, without saying a word, he’d just admitted to what she had guessed. He stared at his shoes and said, “It doesn’t really matter, though, does it?”

    He heard Ginny sigh, and looked up, curious. In answer to his unspoken question, she said, “Love hurts, doesn’t it?” She pulled a letter out of her pocket and held it up. “Harry was supposed to meet me here. We weren’t going to do anything special, just enjoy seeing each other. He was supposed to have the day off, but a Death Eater’s been spotted, and…”

    She broke off, shrugging. “Saving the world will always take priority over our relationship. I knew that, but...” It was her turn to look down at her shoes.

    “Love hurts,” Seamus repeated, and she nodded.
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  6. #16
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    RESULTS!

    Minnabird –Love Hurts <0,0>
    Apollonius – Damaged <1,1>
    Majestic ginny -A Friendly Date <0,3>
    h vic – How the Mighty Have Fallen <1,0>
    Cinderella Angelina. – On a February Day <0,1>
    Welshdevondragon – More Important <0,3>
    ToBeOrNotToBeAGryffindor – Whirlwind <3,0>
    Sainyn Swiftfoot – Of Drool-worthy Perfectness <5,0>
    Sapphireatdawn – I Wish I Knew How <0,0>
    Flight of Song – This Seat Taken <1,1>
    the opaleye – Room 203 <2,1>
    mugglemathdork- A Not Love Story in Four Parts <2,0>
    Leahsm2 – A Leap of Faith <1,0>
    coolh5000 – Against the Wall <1,0>
    Karaley dargen – Old Friends <3,1>
    WeasleyMom – A Little Light <1,0>
    inspirations – Smile <0,1>
    AidaLuthien – Relearning How to Fly <2,0>
    Midnight Storm – Advice <0,7>
    Gwendalynne – Of Boyfriends, Brothers and Bruises <2,1>
    hestiajones – Playing with Fire<1,1>
    Fawkestotherescue - Lollipop <1,6>

    I declare the winner this week to be ...

    Sainyn Swiftfoot


    who wrote the wonderful Of Droolworthy Perfectness
    He gains 5 points for his House (Hufflepuff) and bragging rights for the week.

    Leaving us this week are the lovely Megan (fawkestotherescue) and Annie (Midnight Storm) who take 5 points each for their houses and lots of special barmaid huggles.

    The Fallen (but collecting participation points)
    MissMeg – Ravenclaw
    Maple and Phoenix Feather - Gryffindor
    Fawkes to the rescue - Gryffindor

    Midnight Storm - Ravenclaw

    Disqualified/Zach Smithed
    Olive_Oil_Med
    melody98

    For the rest of you ...

    Week 3 – The Potter Horror Picture Show

    Below are some quotes from three classic movies. You must incorporate one of these quotes into your drabble. You may not change any wording – except for the names (although Frank could work in the Potterverse) The quotes do NOT count towards your word count.

    Quotes
    A) You know how to whistle, don't you, Steve? You just put your lips together and... blow.
    (To Have and Have not)

    B) "This is a very strange love affair."
    - "Why?"
    - "Maybe the fact that you don't love me."

    (Notorious)

    C) "When we get home, Frank, then there'll be kisses, kisses with dreams in them. Kisses that come from life, not death."
    (The Postman Always Rings Twice.)
    You may, if you wish, break up the sentences between two characters and add dialogue tags or the odd word, but you cannot change the order of the sentences/words.

    Example
    “When we get home, Frank, then there'll be kisses, kisses with dreams in them,” Alice said breathily.

    Frank nodded, “And they will be kisses that come from life, not death.”


    Use this form when you return your drabble to me.

    PHP Code:
    [b]Name:[/b] (this will be removed from your drabble)
    [
    b]House:[/b] (ditto)
    [
    b]Title:[/b]
    [
    b]Ratings/Warnings:[/b]
    [
    B]Quote used A,B, or C[/B]
    [
    b]Word Count:[/B]
    [
    b]Author's Note:[/b] 
    You have until Thursday 17th March 8pm GMT to get your drabbles in to me.


    Note to all Brawlers. Please be wary of asking questions on the forums that could identify your drabble.
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  7. #17
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    WEEK 3- VOTE NOW


    It is now time to vote for your favourite and least favourite drabbles.
    So, read through all the drabbles and place your vote wisely. When choosing, please bear in mind, not only the SPaG issues, but the prompt and how well the drabble fits it.

    For the first time, I have set up an option to comment on your choice or on any of the drabbles. I will pass on any comments to the brawler, although anything offensive or over critical will be deleted.

    Vote here

    The poll should close at 3pm Sunday 20th March. Please note the word should. Your barmaid may not be available due to her wondrous work for charity and also her work commitments assessing the competition. (Okay, okay, I may be out having an early birthday lunch somewhere, but I am also doing a charity walk that day). This means that the brawl results may not be on time.
    If this is likely to happen, then I shall post the next prompt early, and the results later.
    *wipes brow*

    Get voting, and encourage everyone else.

    EDIT: There will again be TWO people leaving us this week.



    Title: Unforgiven
    Ratings/Warnings: 3rd/5th Years — Character Death, Sexual Situations
    Quote used — A,B, or C: B
    Word Count: 500
    Author's Note: This quote just jumped out at me for Quote B.

    The cigarette hung lazily from his mouth, ashes falling unheeded from its tip onto cheap cotton sheets. “We should do this more often,” he mused aloud.

    “No, we shouldn’t,” his partner replied. “Are we even together? I mean, are we really together?” Her red hair swung around her shoulders as she turned to face him.

    Pulling the cigarette from his mouth, Theo exhaled heavily, sending a billow of smoke into the stagnant air of their room at the Hog’s Head. “Well, this is a strange love affair.”

    “Why do you insist on blowing that into my face?” Susan said, waving her hand to redirect the foul cloud back toward him. “And as for love affair, that’s a load of old bollocks.”

    Her comment visibly wounded Theo. “Why?”

    Susan scoffed. “Maybe it’s the fact that you don’t love me. You love the idea, but you can’t love me.”

    “Don’t say that. You know why things are the way they are.”

    “No,” she retorted. “No, I don’t. Guys aren’t in love with girls they meet once a week in a dirty, rented room. Most of them have the decency not to pretend otherwise.” With a derisive chuckle, she added, “I’m like a whore that doesn’t even get paid.”

    Theo flicked his spent cigarette onto the floor and grabbed her shoulders, desperate to make her understand. “It’s not like that, Susan. You know it’s not like that.”

    She looked down at his hand digging into her flesh, cognisant of the bruises that would no doubt appear later that night. They would stand as a testament to their foolhardy alliance along with other scars — ones that could not be found in the flesh but in less corporeal places. Her heart was already a wounded soldier in this battle of wills she fought so often with Theo, and her soul was another matter entirely.

    His eyes drifted down to his hands, finally realising that he was hurting her. He withdrew and hugged his knees, no longer looking at her. “I’m sorry. I want to do better, but…”

    But you don’t know how and never will, she finished to herself when he trailed off. As much as he professed to care about her and that the history between them didn’t matter, that little glint of conviction never quite reached his eyes. He wanted to believe it and had even duped himself into thinking he did, but Susan knew better.

    Feeling a rush of shame, she clutched the sheet to her and slid out of bed, very conscious of her nudity. As she collected her cast-off garments, Theo watched her but didn’t try to stop her from leaving. She had hoped he would try, but it only proved what they both already knew.

    They’d both killed and maimed in the battle, but one life she had stolen, one set of lifeless eyes stared back at her in her nightmares. Those same eyes had been passed from father to son, and they watched her leave one last time.
    Title: Money
    Ratings/Warnings: 3rd/5th; sexual situation implied
    Quote used - A,B, or C B
    Word Count: 499


    “You know, Dean,” she said, sitting on the edge of the bed with her bare back turned towards him, “I’m quite enjoying our little love affair.”

    “Is that what you call it?” he asked, and couldn’t resist staring at her slender figure as she tied her hair back. She always did this, and it never ceased to amaze, even fascinate him. The sheets were a complete mess, she was entirely undressed, and yet the thing that concerned her most was getting her hair back into that neat ponytail.

    “Sure,” she replied. She threw him that dazzling smile over her shoulder, and his ears reddened as he felt that she had caught him staring at her. “Why not?”

    “Well, this is a very strange love affair then.” Finally, he sat up and moved to the edge of the bed on his side.

    “Why?”

    Maybe the fact that you don’t love me makes the term somewhat inappropriate.” He wasn’t looking at her now, and an odd bitterness was rising in his stomach as he pulled his socks up.

    “But you love me.” He froze, the sock halfway up his left leg. There was no trace of a question in this statement that seemed to be so casual to her. “I think that’s quite enough, isn’t it?”

    “For us?”

    “For semantics, silly. You love me, and I’m married, so it’s an affair. A love affair, quite simply.” Having finished the elaborate work on her hair, she got up to inspect the result in the mirror on the dressing table. She still hadn’t bothered to put even her underwear on, but that couldn’t distract him from his dark thoughts right now.

    He got up and put his trunks back on, then went down on his knees to search for his robes. When he emerged from under the bed, he suddenly said, without looking at her, “I don’t even know why you’re married to that guy. Smith is a complete arse. No one can stand him.”

    “I never married him for his popularity,” she replied, somewhat distractedly, as she was applying mascara to her eyelashes. He couldn’t help but feel that she was doing things the wrong way around. She was still sitting there completely naked, and now that familiar twinge that he often felt in this situation reappeared.

    “Then what did you marry him for? His personality?”

    She threw him a look between a frown and a smile, then turned back to her mirror. “Don’t be daft, you know I don’t love him. Obviously, I married him for his money. I get to buy the most marvelous things, and no one cares how much I spend.”

    “Look, Daphne, I–”

    “No,” she said, and pulled some fresh underwear out of her drawer. “Oh Dean, Honey, how often have we had this conversation? It wouldn’t work with us – that way.”

    “But I love you!” he exclaimed, almost furiously.

    “I know.” She smiled at him. “But you’re an artist.”


    Money.

    It would always be about money.

    Title: Bethany and Juliet
    Ratings/Warnings: Femmeslash/ sexual situations 3rd-5th
    Quote used - A,B, or C A
    Word Count: 499. Thank God the quotation did not count.
    Author's Note: Two OCs. Juliet is Blaise's aunt.

    Bethany Hadley and Juliet Zabini were sitting across the lawn from a very large house. The grass was pleasantly damp, the night air cool. The couple had been moving silently and carefully through and around the great house, unnoticed by any of the many guests.

    It had been surprisingly simple to first disable the security charms, and then another half an hour to set the spells in place. Now all they had to do was wait.

    It struck Juliet, visiting the house as a guest, albeit uninvited, rather than an inhabitant, that it was monstrously large. Across the lawn and through the open windows the lights from inside the ballroom seemed too bright, the laughter too high and braying, and the chinking of glasses as horribly false.

    “Are you sure you want to do this?” Bethany turned to Juliet. Juliet nodded. Her brother had thrown her out of that house the week before and it grated. She wanted to make the final cut from that life and this was how to do it.

    “Do you think we’ll get away with it?”

    Juliet nudged Bethany with her shoulder. “Bit late to be getting cold feet.”

    “I don’t have cold feet,” Bethany said, indignant. “But we didn’t really think about the afterwards. You’re the Slytherin, you should have thought this through. We’ll just have to run to the gate now, like idiotic Gryffindors.” Juliet didn’t reply. Bethany said, suddenly, “We really shouldn’t be together.”

    Juliet smiled, inclining her body even closer to Bethany. “Oh yes, we should. But you’re right, it was very remiss of me not to think this through. Have you got a plan?”

    A slow smile tweaked Bethany’s face. “Yeah. If we think someone sees us, we whistle. You know how to whistle don’t you, Juliet?” She turned to face her. “You just put your lips together and blow.” They kissed, gently at first, but then Juliet tugged her closer, and they lost balance, falling over and lying on the grass.

    “I’ve given up that house for you,” Juliet murmured.

    They stared at each other, lit by the moonlight, for what felt like minutes but was probably less. The banal noises from the house ceased to matter.

    Suddenly a clock chimed and Bethany sat up, alert. “The twelfth chime. Come on,” she said, pulling Juliet up. Juliet grinned.

    “There’s no way I’m missing this.” The clock chimed again.

    “Star-crossed lovers, we are.” Bethany rested her head on Juliet’s shoulder.

    “Not anymore,” Juliet kissed her forehead, before looking up at the house. She had grown up in that house. She had been to this party every year, since she was fourteen years old. She knew that whilst the clock was chiming, everyone left the house to watch the fireworks display that her brother would have meticulously arranged to go off at the twelfth strike of the clock. He was in for a surprise.

    The guests were gathered on the lawn now, looking up at the house expectantly.

    Juliet began to whistle. Bethany smiled. There was an explosion and then the house began to burn.

    Title: Fear the “Dinged-up Dementor”
    Ratings/Warnings: 3rd/5th; Sexual Situations, Substance Abuse, ummm... Sap Alert
    Quote used – A, B, or C A
    Word Count: 499 (minus 15, obviously)
    Author's Note:

    Ginny woke with the sun, dreading what her teammates called 'the walk of shame.' She'd seen the banter before, but never dreamed it would happen to her. Everyone would know where she'd been and with whom she'd left. She closed her eyes, embarrassed.

    “How stupid,” she thought, looking at Harry sleeping so soundly beside her, fighting the urge to hold him close. “He should have been the one, but he decided he wasn't.”

    She sat up and watched him sleeping, almost as if this was where he belonged. She fought the urge to wake him and cradle him and love him the way she'd always imagined she would, but no. It was too late. She'd given him every opportunity to return to her, and always, there was something more important.

    Ginny sunk back into the bed, blushing at the memories of the night before.

    “Buuuwwwaaa, Ginny!” Gwendolyn Burlap exclaimed, handing Ginny some strange alcoholic shot that featured an odd blue flame in the middle, and twirling her around full circle. “The way you popped that bloke when he went for the Snitch... bleedin' brilliant.”

    Ginny looked at her teammate, feigning wide-eyed innocence and shrugging at the very idea that she'd impede another competitor's forward progress.

    “Another 'Dinged-up Dementor'?” Her coach asked, handing Ginny a new flaming blue shot.

    “That's just wrong,” Ginny laughed, looking at the shot. She had just clinked the woman's glass, downing the contents, when she glanced sideways and saw him. Harry Potter, holding the same stupid drink and smiling at her.

    “You were terrific, Ginny,” Harry said, as he fought through the crowd and joined her.

    Ginny found she had another flaming shot in her hand, and toasted him.

    “To Harry Potter,” she said, “'Our One Great Hope.”

    “Oh, Ginny,” Harry laughed, “what would I do if I lost you?”

    “You know how to whistle, don't you, Harry?” Ginny hiccuped, provocatively. “You just put your lips together and... blow.”


    The rest of the night was enveloped in an unfortunate blue haze.

    She couldn't believe she'd allowed this to happen. So many times she'd been there for him, opening her heart to him, and loving him. Every time he had looked her dead in the eye, telling her she wasn't enough for him. Well, his words had been different but, that was how they sounded to Ginny.

    “How horrible,” Ginny thought, as she rose from the bed and tried to find something to cover herself with. She felt so bad. She'd betrayed herself. All she wanted was to leave before he woke up.

    “Ginny,” Harry exclaimed, smiling that stupid grin that haunted her daily.

    “Oh, Harry,” Ginny said, “I never wanted it to be like this.”

    Ginny looked down in shame, noticing that she was fully clothed.

    “Neither do I, Ginny,”, Harry said, cupping her head in his hands, forcing her to look at him. “I love you. I always have and I always will. Ginny Weasley, you silly fool, will you marry me?”
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  8. #18
    Wizengamot Hufflepuff
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    Title: Whistle While You Work
    Ratings/Warnings: 1st-2nd years/None
    Quote used - A,B, or C: Quote A
    Word Count: 399
    Author's Note:

    Ron watched in amazement while Hermione dipped her quill into her ink bottle and began to write her Arithmancy essay incredibly quickly, her hand flying across the parchment as she wrote.

    Ron still wasn’t done his questions for Professor Slughorn, which were due tomorrow. They did nothing but make his head ache. How had Hermione done it in ten minutes? He wished Harry would return from his meeting with Dumbledore so he could lighten the mood. Hermione took homework far too seriously for Ron’s taste. He sighed.

    “How do you do it?” Ron blurted. Hermione looked up from her Arithmancy notes.

    “What?” she asked. “Homework?”

    “Yeah!” said Ron impatiently. “I can’t write an essay in about five seconds like you can! I can barely even take the right notes in Flitwitck’s class.”

    He thought he saw a flicker of a smile before an expression of annoyance crossed Hermione’s face. “I know what you’re getting at, you know,” shielding her Potions notes instinctively, “I’m not letting you copy!

    Ron sighed again.

    “Try to make it fun,” she tried.

    “And how exactly do I do that?”

    “Make a strategy up, I don’t know. Try to think about things you like in terms of Potions, like – like Quidditch, for example. What types of wood make for the best broomstick? Don’t look at me like that!” she added defensively. Ron was smirking at her lack of Quidditch knowledge. “You know I’ve no idea how to play Quidditch!”

    Ron snorted. Then he sighed for the third time. “Well, then what do you do?”

    “I study properly, Ron. I take the right notes and pay attention in class.” Then she added sarcastically, “I suppose you could always whistle while you work. That always makes it interesting. Gives your work a beat to it.”

    “Whistle?” he said, missing the sarcasm.

    “Yes, whistle. You know how to whistle, don’t you, Ron?” she asked in mock concern. “You just put your lips together and…blow.”

    “Does that ever work for you?” he questioned.

    Hermione decided to play this out for all it was worth. “If it didn’t work for me, do you think I’d be suggesting it for you?” she said, more sarcastic than ever and trying to suppress a grin.

    “Hmm,” he said thoughtfully, taking her seriously, “that could actually work.

    “Only problem is,” he admitted, “I don’t know how to whistle.”

    It was Hermione’s turn to sigh.
    Title: Selfish Sacrifice
    Ratings/Warnings: 1st-2nd years; none
    Quote used - A,B, or C Quote B
    Word Count: 497
    Author's Note: I don't know whether to be pleased or apprehensive that I wrote this without having to cut anything.

    Alicia was telling Angelina George's plans for the evening -- dinner and a comedic play ("At least he's willing to try to laugh," she said) -- when Angelina said casually, "Are you going to invite him in tonight?"

    "I ..." Alicia started. She'd thought about it; she wanted to. But she knew in her heart that it would be too, too selfish, especially considering the way Angelina was watching her out of the corner of her eye. "I don't think that's going to happen," she said finally, and was gratified by the relief on Angelina's face. She needed to talk to George, but she'd have to be careful about it.

    That night, after the play, George walked Alicia home, regaling her with the best jokes from the production and adding his own twists. She could barely move for laughing, and he had her arm to keep her from collapsing. His own laughs were subdued.

    "Thanks for a great evening," Alicia said when they reached her doorstep. "I always have a wonderful time with you."

    He smiled, and bent his head for a kiss. She hesitated, but allowed herself this final pleasure. When he moved to deepen the kiss, she pulled back slightly and said against his mouth, "This is a very strange love affair."

    "Why?" he asked, smiling (no doubt at her word choice).

    She took a deep breath. "Maybe the fact that you don't love me."

    He stiffened and looked her in the eye, stricken. "Maybe it's a little early for that word," he tried, but Alicia shook her head, placing her hands on his shoulders.

    "You love someone else," she said gently. "I've seen the way you look when I talk about her, the way you pretend not to stare when she's around. I see your heartache," she added.

    At least he didn't pretend ignorance. "She's ... Fred's," he said heavily.

    Even knowing that was how he felt, it irked Alicia to hear it and she reminded herself to be cautious. "I don't think she feels like Fred's anymore," she told him. "I think she just feels lonely. Don't ignore her for your brother's sake; I'm sure that's not what he would want."

    "Don't say that," George said, suddenly bitter. "We'll never know."

    "You're right," Alicia said, cursing her insensitivity. "But I do know this: Angelina wants and misses you. You want and miss her. I don't think you need to be afraid of any ghosts between you, not until you at least try."

    He was still angry, but Alicia hoped he'd give her words some thought. "Thanks again for tonight. I'm sorry."

    "I'm sorry too," he replied after a moment. "I hope ... you're okay."

    "Always," Alicia said, ignoring the keening of her heart and putting on a smile. "Good night."

    "Good night." He stayed on her doorstep while she went inside. After a while she heard the crack of his Apparition. It was probably too much to hope that he'd gone to Angelina's, but just in case she didn't contact her. There was always tomorrow; tonight, she let her heart be broken.
    Title: Untitled
    Ratings/Warnings: 1st-2nd Years, Mild lanaguage if you're a prude =P
    Quote used - A,B, or C B
    Word Count: 496

    Tonks, her hair a bright pink, a contended smile on her lips, lies on the bed with her head on Lupin’s lap. Even in this moment of intimacy, he seems tense, his muscles taut, as if he never let himself relax entirely. He runs his hand through Tonks’ hair, the other hand resting on her hip.

    She breaks the silence, looking up at him and saying thoughtfully, “You know, Remus, this is a very strange love affair.”

    Remus takes a second to answer. “How so?” he asks.

    “Maybe because you don’t love me?” she replies. Remus’ eyebrows knot, and he looks puzzled.

    “What do you mean?” he asks. He isn’t sure if this is another one of her jokes, or if she really is serious this time.

    “You haven’t said it yet, you know?” Her voice chokes as she replies. “You haven’t said that you love me yet. You’ve said you have affections for me, that you care for me, but those words are cold and calculating and surgical, Remus! You haven’t told me that you love me, not once!” She sits up, her back against the wall, hair turning duller, browner.

    “I… I can’t say it yet, Tonks. I really care about you, I do, but I cannot promise you a safe life, I cannot promise that I won’t kill you during the full moon, I cannot promise that our child will not end up a werewolf, like me! I turn into a monster every month, a monster who won’t hesitate to tear your throat out. I never was the bravest or the most loyal of my friends—how do you know I won’t leave you and run away in a moment of doubt? How could I possibly burden you on top of all this with my love as well?”

    “Because love makes everything easier to deal with, dammit! Why can’t you see what everyone else can, Remus? What made your days at Hogwarts bearable, what stopped you from sinking deeper and deeper into depression? Your friends, Remus, and your love for them! You were scared even then, you tried to protect them—or maybe protect yourself, scared they’d abandon you if they found out the truth—but they persisted and they got your barriers down… And that helped you, Remus! Why don’t you remember that, why don’t you let me pass through your fences?” Tonks’ voice isn’t choked anymore though she is crying, tears rolling down her cheeks. Remus looks down at his feet.

    “I’m scared,” he finally whispers. “For me and for you. There is no guarantee that either of us is going to make it out of this war alive—“

    “Then shouldn’t we make sure that the fey days we have are worth it? Shouldn’t we make them last?” demands Tonks, and she kisses Remus, conveying more than she could through her words. When they break away, Remus looks up at her, into her teary eyes.

    “I love you,” he says.


    Title: Unspoken Affection
    Ratings/Warnings: 3rd-5th years /Sexual Situations; Character Death; Angst
    Quote used - B
    Word Count: 493 [including the quote]
    Author's Note:

    Later, when Astoria would look back on her life, she would always think that they got married too young. They hadn't had an opportunity to experience life on their own before being forced to start one together.

    She had been fresh out of Hogwarts. And he had spent two years learning to navigate an adult world where his place in society was questionable, at best.

    He courted her for a year before their wedding day – it was only proper, he told her later, that she experience the romance of a love affair. It had seemed ironic to her – their marriage had been arranged years before. They'd merely been going through the expectations placed upon them by birthright alone.

    On their wedding night, they laid next to each other, neither one eager to consummate their marriage.

    "I don't want to force you into anything you don't want to do," he murmured, getting up from their shared bed, and walking across the room to stare out the window.

    She had wanted to scream at him, "You already did! I married you!"

    Eventually, they got drunk and laid down together – using liquid courage in order to move on to the next phase of their married life. She conceived right away. Then she miscarried. It took five pregnancies before Astoria carried Scorpius to term.

    He doted on their son – his love for the child was obvious in every atom of his being. Astoria scoffed at the idea of being jealous of her own progeny because Draco was a good husband to her. They never fought, or screamed. He took her opinion into consideration, and sometimes even followed her advice. He bought her flowers, and kissed her every morning and every night. He held her hand in public, and pulled out her chair and opened all her door. He knew all the things she favored, and all of her quirks. And after their only drunken night together, he'd become a very considerate lover.

    But the one thing she wanted most – wasn't hers. When Scorpius was five, she became pregnant again. Draco dotted on her; both of them scared that they'd lose another child.

    He was helping her lay down to bed, when she finally said what she'd thinking for so many years:

    "Before we got married, you said I deserved to experience romance at least once." He nodded. "Well, this is a very strange love affair," she said. He looked confused, but finally asked, "Why?"

    She considered her words, carefully, and whispered into the night: "Maybe the fact that we've been married for quite a long time, and still you don't love me."

    His eyes softened at her words. He tenderly brushed her tears away. "I'm sorry that I've never told you how I feel for you, Astoria. I may not have loved you when I was a foolish young man, angry at the world, but my affection for you cannot be described in words."


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  9. #19
    Wizengamot Hufflepuff
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    Title: Him, Alice and Me
    Ratings/Warnings: 3rd-5th yr; Mental Disorder
    Quote used - A,B, or C C
    Word Count: 451 (minus the quote)
    Author's Note:This turned out to be a bit depressing.


    Hmmm. Mmmmm. Mmmmm. Hmmm.

    “Alice,” says the man sitting on the opposite bed. “Alice.”

    I smile at him to shut him up. His pale white skin crinkles.

    Why is it all white here? All white and icy cold? It’s always white.

    Hmmm. Mmmmm. Mmmmm. Hmmm.

    My wedding dress was white. The hair that falls on my pillow is white. This is a white place. This place. Not home. Cold, yet so warm because I’ve been here so long, trapped in brief flashes of my story…

    My story! Let me tell you my story before it vanishes again. I was tortured. Pain, so much pain, so much pain. Why? Why?

    Hmmm. Mmmmm. Mmmmm. Hmmm.

    There he is. That boy again. His face…so kind, so knowing. And there is the gum. And this gum is salty. Salty. Not sweet. SALTY.

    I wish…I wish…

    There is a feeling in me. I can neither say it nor act it, but I feel it when he comes here. His face…so familiar. I think I should touch him but I am scared. He might break. Crumble. Melt like his eyes do when I stare at him. I should give him a part of me…He must know I care…

    This wrapper would do. But – but – I should warn him. The gum wasn’t sweet. It was salty. Should warn him even if there isn’t a gum left.

    Hmmm. Mmmmm. Mmmmm. Hmmm.

    “Alice.”

    Left alone with the man again. Always, always. Alice. Alice. Alice.

    “Al? Ee? Al-lee? Ees? Allees?”

    “Shut up! Shut up! SHUT UP! I cannot stand your inanity! Going about some…some… I am not your damned Alice. Leave me alone! Let me enjoy the peace! I have enough to go on with, enough I tell you, you stupid man! Enough! EN-AAARRRGGGH!”

    Pain. Pain once again as they pull me away from the man, try to stop me from scratching him. They should shut him up, but it’s me they are after. Me! I never make noise. I never make trouble. But it’s me they grab, me they poke with their stick, me whose neck tingles as the stick does something to my body, me whose nerves jangle with extreme excitement and heat at first then sober up within seconds, defeated and cold and tamed.

    And then we are left alone. And I lie down, all curled up among the whiteness. And he reels off the single litany he knows, the one thing that escapes his lips often but only when we are alone. And it makes my brain hurt, a dull thud each time a syllable strikes it.

    “When we get home, Alice, then there’ll be kisses, kisses with dreams in them. Kisses that come from life, not death.”

    And I want to shut him up so that I can go to sleep. Only…I can’t.

    Hmmm. Mmmmm. Mmmmm. Hmmm.

    Title: Flawed
    Ratings/Warnings: 3rd-5th, implied sexual situations, slash
    Quote used - A,B, or C B
    Word Count: 164
    Author's Note: Enjoy!

    They lay in bed together, in a room above the Leaky Cauldron, clothes scattered across the floor.

    For awhile, he could just listen to the sound of their breathing, inhale their combined scent, and trace aimless patterns on someone else’s skin or run his fingers through wavy hair that was, at once, so familiar but not quite right.

    For awhile, if he closed his eyes, he could pretend.

    But only for a very little while. Eventually, something had to break the fantasy.

    He watched his lover get out of bed and get dressed. “This is a very strange love affair.”

    “Why?” he asked, genuinely curious.

    He received an artless shrug in response. “Maybe the fact that you don’t love me.”

    He shrugged in response. “I never pretended that I did.” He sighed. “I’m a deeply flawed human being, I thought you would have understood that by now.”

    “Then maybe you need to come down from your pedestal, Albus Brian Wulfric Dumbledore, and embrace your flaws.” The door slammed behind the young man.

    Title: Some Things will Never Change
    Ratings/Warnings: 1st-2nd/none
    Quote used - A,B, or C B
    Word Count: 499 with the quote, 483 without
    Author's Note: -

    “Did you know we’re engaged?” Hermione asked as she turned the pages of the Daily Prophet.

    Harry started choking on his juice. “What?” he spluttered.

    “Not actually, you idiot. But according to Society section of the Daily Prophet, you proposed to me in secret the day after the battle and we’re now planning a private wedding in Barbados.”

    “Where do they get this stuff?”

    “I have no idea. And it’s not even Skeeter. It’s some new writer, just calls himself Jeremy.”

    “Well that’s all we need. Don’t tell Ron will you? The last thing we need is him convincing himself that we’re carrying out some sort of love affair right under his nose.”

    Hermione laughed. "I don’t think we need to worry about that. Besides, this is a very strange ‘love affair’."

    "Why?"

    "Maybe the fact that you don't love me, for one thing, or that I’m actually in a relationship with your best friend, and you with his sister. So I don’t think we actually have to worry too much about Ron being jealous.”

    “Being jealous about what?” Ron entered the room, still in his pyjamas, and started serving himself breakfast.

    “Oh just some rubbish about Harry and I in the Prophet.”

    Ron’s eyes narrowed. “What sort of rubbish?”

    Harry desperately tried to cut Hermione off, knowing exactly where this was going, but she seemed completely oblivious.

    “Oh just, the usual. Apparently we’re engaged.”

    “You and Harry?”

    “Well, yes, but obviously it’s complete nonsense. I don’t know why they still bother publishing stuff like this.”

    “Because it’s what everyone wants, isn’t it,” Ron retorted.

    “What?”

    “Everyone wants to see Harry Potter and Hermione Granger, two heroes of war, fall into each other’s arms and live happily ever after. They’re not interested in the spare part.”

    “Oh come on, Ron, how many times do we have to talk about this. You’re not the ‘spare part’. Harry and I, we’re not in the least bit interested in each other are we, Harry?”

    Harry was quick to reply. “No, not at all,” he said, shaking his head.

    “That’s not the point.”

    “Well, what is the point, Ron? Because I am certainly sick to death of you blowing up over everything little thing someone says or does when there is nothing we can do to stop them. It’s time you grew up.”

    “Oh, you’re right, I’m sorry; every other guy would be perfectly fine reading about his girlfriend’s relationship with someone else in the paper every day.”

    “Any other guy who’d been through what we have would know that it means nothing, and what we say to each other matters more than what some idiot named Jeremy says about us in the paper. I can’t stand you acting like this anymore.”

    “Fine.” Ron jumped to his feet. “Then I guess I’ll just leave you to your wedding plans.” He stormed from the room, leaving Hermione glaring after him and Harry inwardly sighing to himself. It seemed that some things would never change.

    Title: A Conversation Under the Stars
    Ratings/Warnings: 1st-2nd, none
    Quote used - A,B, or C C
    Word Count: 199 with quotes not included; 219 with
    Author's Note: Scraping in at the last minute, eek!

    A warm breeze circled a star-lit field, rustling in the leaves of an oak tree and making the long grass wave. It was a quite night, the only sounds the wildlife and the whispering of the man and woman who lay side-by-side in the grass.

    They had been talking for some time, about one thing and another, their conversation surprisingly light. But finally, a heavy question came.

    “Do you think we’ll ever go home?” the woman asked.

    The latter thought over this question a moment, his eyes fixed on the stars. “I think we will. We’ve lived this long, which is more than a lot of people can say. And…” he faltered. “Harry Potter – he’s still out there somewhere. That has to count for something.”

    The woman shifted. “How one kid can –“

    “Shh,” interrupted the man, taking the woman’s hand. “Let’s not dwell on doubts. Not tonight.”

    They fell silent, listening to the sounds the night made.

    “When we get home…” the woman said wistfully, turning to look at the man again.

    His eyes were far away. “Then there’ll be kisses, kisses with dreams in them.” He met her gaze squarely as he squeezed her hand. “Kisses that come from life, not death.”

    And for the first time in a long time, she could do nothing but smile.
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  10. #20
    Wizengamot Hufflepuff
    Kill the Spare
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    Title: Luna's Leisure
    Ratings/Warnings: 3rd-5th, mind sexual situations
    Quote used: B, from Notorious
    Word Count: 498
    Author's Note:


    I’ve met a man. I met him months ago, to be precise, at a Natural History conference in Sweden. He asked me to go for a drink, which turned into dinner, some incredible conversation, and eventually, breakfast.

    There he is now, over in the bed, sleeping. He sleeps soundly and doesn’t snore much, the first of which is quite unlike me and the second of which makes my nights much more peaceful. I wake easily, you see, when I can’t turn off my mind, the way I can’t seem to turn it off right now.

    We’ve been traveling together—studying, working, and having lovely sex—for over six months now, and I wonder if it means anything. I don’t need to know yet, but I’ve seen him looking at me differently these past few weeks. He doesn’t mind when I catch him, either. In fact, I think he likes it when I discover him watching me with that thoughtful look he gets; I raise my eyebrow, and his smile is so wide I can see his molars.

    I’m extremely fond of him—this much I know. I never tire of his presence, or even his habit of asking questions continually. This curiosity not only makes him an exceptional researcher and naturalist, but perhaps an ideal companion for me. I like questions, and I like looking for the answers to them. The question is: am I happier not doing so alone?

    “What are you thinking, Love?” He is studying me with a sleepy look, his head propped on his hand.

    “How nice it is when you ask me questions.”

    He smiles lazily, and I wonder why I left the bed.

    “There by the window, in the moonlight, you’re like an angel.”

    Rolf says things like this with no pretense at all. They are merely his thoughts. “You don’t believe in angels.”

    “I’ll believe when I see one, is what I said.”

    Because I cannot resist him, I return to bed and sit near him with my legs crossed.

    “This is a very strange love affair, sweet Luna.”

    I have been called strange so often, the word has become quite pedestrian. “Why?” I ask anyway, because he does not have a pedestrian bone in his body.

    “Maybe the fact that you don’t love me.”

    I study his expression: he is vulnerable, but there is no pressure. I cannot keep from touching him... my hands are on his face, then his neck and chest. He is beautiful, and so is his mind. Is this how I know?

    “It is not true that I don’t love you. I’m simply not sure that I do.”

    “Oh, you do,” he teases.

    I raise an eyebrow because I know what will happen if I do.

    His hand hooks around my neck and pulls me down on top of him. “You will, sweet Luna,” he whispers into my hair, which falls like a curtain around his face. “You will.”

    And I daresay… he may be right.
    Title: Doesn't Mean a Thing
    Ratings/Warnings: 3rd-5th years, Sexual Situations
    Quote used - A,B, or C B
    Word Count: 395
    Author's Note: None, really.

    She reclined back on the pillows, her dark hair falling over her collarbones, and watched him dress in the half-light seeping through the window.

    “You know, this is a very strange love affair,” she said, pulling her black nightgown further down, toward her knees.

    He turned, straightening the collar of his tuxedo, and asked, “Why?”

    She laughed. “Maybe the fact that you don’t love me.”

    He plucked his bow tie off the back of a chair. “Well, you don’t love me either, do you?”

    “No,” she admitted.

    He grinned crookedly at her. “So what’s the problem?”

    “It’s not a problem,” she assured him, sliding off the bed. She walked across the room toward him, deliberately slow. Finally she reached him and draped her arms around his neck. “You’re just always on my mind, that’s all.”

    He grinned, leaned down, and kissed her, tracing spiraling patterns on her back with his fingertips. When she didn’t think she couldn’t stand it any longer, he pulled back, a slight smirk on his face. “Come on. The Ministry ball starts in only an hour. You need to get dressed.”

    She made a face. “Why do we need to go to that silly ball anyway?”

    “I told Potter I’d be there. And you“ – he gently chucked her under the chin with his forefinger – “are currently my plus-one.”

    “But I’ll only be there – I’m only here – because you think it’ll make her jealous,” the girl said.

    His grey eyes met hers unflinchingly. “Of course. Why else do you think you’d be here?”

    She shrugged. “I don’t know. I’ll go put on my dress now.” She turned away and strode into the large closet off the bedroom.

    He leaned toward the mirror above his dressing table and used his fingers to comb back his blonde hair. She emerged from the closet, holding a navy blue gown up to her frame.

    She turned, exposing her bare back. “Zip me up, would you?” He obliged.

    “I hope you’re not beginning to read too much into this relationship,” he said as she sat at the dressing table. She pulled a case from the drawer and opened it, spilling its burden of cosmetics over the table.

    She looked up at him, and for a moment her eyes betrayed her. Then she resolved her face into a smile. “No, of course not. It doesn’t mean a thing.”

    Title: For Harry
    Ratings/Warnings: 3rd-5th Years/Mentioned character death
    Quote used C
    Word Count: 480
    Author's Note: Zilch


    She stares out of the window with a wistful look on her face. The leaves on the trees outside are somewhere between emerald and a light shade of brown – a mark of the oncoming change, winter. The season, however, is one of the insignificant changes occurring outside the little cottage. As Lily Potter’s eyes trail the lone leaf that falls out of one of the trees, she ponders over the present condition of the Wizarding World. A miserable look flashes across her face.

    Behind her, she can hear her husband pacing the length of the dining room. She worries about him. She tears her gaze away from the window and walks over to James.

    His messy hair is more dishevelled than usual, and there are dark circles under his eyes – the same eyes that once had a mischievous glint in them. However, they now bear the resemblance of dark and hollow pits. He looks very edgy; Lily cannot blame him. She glances at the piece of parchment that lays abandoned on the dining table – it is the same one that holds the news of the Prewetts’ death.

    She rests a hand on his shoulder. He barely acknowledges it; he is looking at the letter intently.

    “This wasn’t supposed to happen,” he says in a gravelly voice. He hardly talks nowadays. “The Prewetts… they were two of the bravest men I knew.”

    Lily says nothing. Tears begin to swell up inside her eyes, but she cannot cry now; James needs her to be strong. She will be strong for James and Harry.

    Lily knows her husband. She knows how frustrated he is. He has never been cooped up in one place for so long. Every day Lily can see James getting more impatient. She can hear him gritting his teeth whenever the owl brings in news. He is a warrior, a true Gryffindor; he wants to go out and fight like he’s meant to. Yet he can’t do anything to help… and that’s what bothers him.

    “Don’t worry, James,” she finally says in an effort to cheer him up. “It’ll all be over soon. We’ll make it through, I promise.” Deep inside, however, she knows that things are far from over. There are worse things to come.

    He doesn’t speak. He just looks into her eyes with fierce determination. Reluctantly, he nods.

    "And when we get home, James, then there'll be kisses, kisses with dreams in them,” she says, looking at him with eyes full of hope.

    He smiles sadly. “Hopefully kisses that come from life, not death."

    Lily hugs him and rests her head on his chest. She knows it’s too much to ask and that he won’t do it willingly, but she still says, “For now we stay out of this mess. For Harry.”

    James hugs her back. “For Harry,” he agrees, and kisses the top of her head.

    Title: In Love and War
    Ratings/Warnings: 1st-2nd years; no warnings
    Quote used: C
    Word Count: 497
    Author's Note:

    The first time he tried to kiss her they were sitting on a cliff with the crashing surf hundreds of feet below them. It was dark and he could hardly see her but he knew she was there and he could feel the warmth of her beside him. That was another lifetime really but it wasn’t hard to recall the absolute terror that had been so constant, so inevitable.

    She told him that everything was going to be all right. She told him that he shouldn’t be scared, couldn’t be scared, and at first he had wondered if she really was as mad as everyone thought because if you weren’t scared as the world fell apart, then you mustn’t have anything to lose, and if you didn’t have anything to lose then you didn’t have anything at all. There was nothing but uncertainty, now, nothing but distrust and lies. When he breathed in, it tasted of death and while he was on the run, fear had been the only constant in his life. But she looked at his trembling hands in his lap and smiled such a normal, beautiful smile that he understood what she meant. He took a deep breath and threaded her fingers through his. Her smile didn’t falter.

    “See, that wasn’t so hard.”

    He remembered the way he smiled, the way he leant forward, the way her smile changed to something different, something more. And then the moment was gone. Shafts of light split them apart as Fleur opened the front door of Shell Cottage announcing supper and Dean wished he had the nerve to just grab Luna and kiss her anyway. But he didn’t. He was scared.

    The second time he tried to kiss her, she was dancing. He sat at the Gryffindor table in the Great Hall with Seamus, trying to convince himself that it was real, that it was all over, that he could return to his family without fear. He remembered the way he glanced up to see her swaying unnoticed in the corner, her eyes closed, arms drifting above her as if they didn’t really belong. He stood, leaving a baffled Seamus behind him, and walked towards her. It was as if she could feel him watching her as he approached and she opened her eyes to stare back at him, a curious expression on her face. When he reached her, he cupped her face in his hands.

    “I’m not scared anymore,” he said and she smiled that same smile from the cliff.

    “I know, Dean, but now is not the time.”

    He remembered the way he drew back, the way that familiar clammy fear seemed to return for a second before she reached up and stroked his cheek.

    “When we get home, Dean, then there’ll be kisses, kisses with dreams in them.”

    He sighed and returned her smile once more.

    “Kisses that come from life, not death.”

    The third time, he didn’t even try. He just kissed her.
    I'm a BARMAID. I write. I drabble. I duel. I poet. I'm a BADGER!!!

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