684. The best cheaters on school work are muggleborns because, while all the teachers are looking for magical cheats, muggleborns are using morse code to send answers to one another and using water bottles with notes written on them.
(A/N: It gets kinda awkward towards the ending. Sorry. I’m not the best at writing feelings…)
"That’s the last of them. All safe and sound tucked in their beds where the Toad won’t find them." Alicia made her way back into the room of requirements, which was still littered with pillows from the night’s DA meeting. She, Angelina, and Katie had offered to chaperone the evacuation of the meeting so that they could have the room to themselves after it was over. They were planning on having girl’s nights this year, so they could really hang out before Alicia and Angelina graduated in the spring.
After Harry had showed them the room of requirement at the first meeting of Dumbledore’s Army, they knew they had found the perfect place. Katie strode to the center of the room, and flopped down on a multi-colored pile of pillows haphazardly. “So are we doing this or what?” Katie inquired, propping herself up on her elbows.
"Oh it’s happening, for sure. There is no way you are getting out of celebrating your 17th with us! I’ll go grab the firewhiskey. Will you guys be okay without me?" Angelina crossed the room to the door. "I think we can manage five minutes without you…" Alicia giggled. Angelina rolled her eyes. "I’ll be back in a moment." And with that she slipped out the door and into the rest of the castle.
Alicia waltzed over to where Katie lay in the center of the room, gracefully taking a seat next to her friend. “So,” she paused taking in their dim surroundings. “How do you think this place works? Do I just think of something I want and it appears? Like if I thought wicked hard about, like and Ice-cream sundae, one would just appear in front on me?”
"In theory yes but-" Katie began, before Alicia interrupted her. "Then how come I don’t have a sundae in front of me, hmmm? I could really go for a sundae right now." She pulled her best serious face and stared her friend down. "Well if you had waited, I would have explained. If I’m not mistaken, it has to do with Gamp’s Law of Elemental Transfiguration, or rather the first of the Principal Exceptions," Katie explained, trying her best not to sound like a know-it-all. She smiled at her friend’s confused expression before continuing. "The first of the Primary exemptions to Gamp’s Law: It is not possible to make food out of nothing. You can summon, or multiply it, but not conjure it from thin air. I assume this place follows the same basic laws as the rest of the magical world…"
"Really, Katie, sometimes I think you could give Granger a run for her money." Katie stuck her tongue out at her best friend, before pushing herself up to sit face-to-face with Alicia. "Now if you were to think of something simpler," Katie continued her lecture, "like oh, say, a quaffle…" At that she reached behind her back for the quaffle she hoped had appeared behind her. Success! Her hand connected with the soft leather ball, gripping it in a way that was second nature by now. She whipped it out from behind her back, and playfully lobbed the ball at her friend. "…Then perhaps you might have more luck!" Katie finished her sentence as Alicia’s quick reflexes allowed her to catch the ball.
Silence built around the girls, not necessarily uncomfortable, but definitely noticeable. Katie rearranged the pillows so they were beneath her head, before laying down on her back. She stared at the ceiling wishing she could see the stars, as Alicia laid down next to her. Katie felt the stone floor beneath her begin to soften, as the floor turned into grass. Everything grew darker for a moment as the lanterns dimmed, only to be replaced by starlight, the only sound the soft rustle of clothing as Alicia fidgeted next to her. “It’s not going to be the same next year.” Katie said softly, a short time later. “Without you here.” She had been avoiding the subject because she hadn’t wanted to think about it, but summer was approaching, and her friends would be gone, and she would be alone.
"Angelina and I are gonna miss you, too." Alicia muttered. Katie’s stomach fluttered. She had grown used to the butterflies now, as they were pretty much constant whenever Alicia was around. "No, Alicia. I am going to miss you,” she emphasized hoping her friend would understand what she meant. She had never been the best at this whole “feelings” thing. She turned to look at her best friend, who was laid out next to her completely stiff.
At first Katie thought the tension was because of what she had said, but as she began to make out the outline of her friend she saw that her Alicia had in fact taken the quaffle and was now using one of the grooves in the ball to help her balance it on her forehead. Alicia, feeling Katie look at her, and caught somewhat off guard by the implications made by her friend, turned to look at Katie, momentarily forgetting the quaffle balanced on her head. The ball fell as she moved landing above their heads on the ground with a soft thud.
Katie, unsure of where she wanted this conversation to go, having not thought this far ahead, buried her face in her hands, embarrassed. “God, you probably think I’m an idiot or something,” Katie chattered, “Just please can we pretend I never said anything,” So much for Gryffindor bravery, she thought, wishing she could perform a memory erasing spell or the like. She felt pressure on her hands, pulling them down, away from her face, practically forcing her to look Alicia in the eyes.
Katie didn’t know what was going on in Alicia’s mind, but she was scared to pieces. She had just confessed her biggest secret, and now she was sure she was going to lose her best friend because of it. Suddenly, she sensed Alicia’s face right next to hers: Katie wasn’t even sure when she had shut her eyes. She opened them to see Alicia’s sparkling eyes centimeters from her own, staring at her. Alicia’s eyes flicked down to Katie’s lips, then back up at her eyes, as she leaned in even further. Katie tilted her head to accommodate Alicia’s, and then they were kissing. They were kissing, and for the first time in months, Katie forgot for a moment how little time there was until summer.
They broke apart the kiss, and returned to laying on their backs, significantly closer than they had before. Katie knew that they would have to talk about what happened, but for now she just wanted to lie there and enjoy it. “That was definitely better than an Ice-cream sundae,” Alicia joked, grinning. “I wonder what’s taking Angelina so long? She was just supposed to be grabbing the firewhiskey and your present.” Katie shrugged, leaning her head against Alicia’s shoulder. She didn’t know, and honestly, at the moment, she didn’t really care, she had just received the best birthday present she could have hoped for.