|Through the Looking Glass
Author: garg-girl PM
Several students are chosen to take part in a Study Abroad program at a typical Canadian muggle high school. Post DH.Rated: Fiction T - English - Humor - Chapters: 4 - Words: 9,177 - Reviews: 3 - Favs: 2 - Follows: 6 - Updated: 09-27-07 - Published: 08-07-07 - id: 3709386
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
Through the Looking Glass
All canon characters appearing in this fic are copyright J.K. Rowling.
No infringement of these copyrights is intended, and is not authorized by the copyright holder.
All original characters are the property of garggirl.
Author's Note: This is a post "DH" fic. Because of all the trouble during the events of "Deathly Hallows," the Ministry decided that all Hogwarts students would have to repeat their school year. As such, the "Study Abroad" program was developed for the students who displayed talents above and beyond what they had learned in school during the final battle. A number of students were chosen to spend a year at a typical Canadian muggle high school.
ADDED NOTE: Snape is still alive -- explanation will come later in the story.
Chapter 1: Down the Rabbit Hole
"Come on guys!" Hermione yelled up the stairwell leading to the boys dormitories. "I don't wanna be late!"
After a moment, Ron's head bobbed into view from above. "Geez! Hold your horses, Hermione. We'll be down in a minute."
Hermione huffed impatiently and plopped down onto her trunk. She was excited, one could hardly blame her. She had been looking forward to the Study Abroad program ever since she found she had been accepted almost a week earlier. The thought of casting a 'Hurry Up' charm on the boys quickly flitted in and out of her mind just as the sound of footsteps echoed on the stairs. Hermione jumped to her feet the instant they appeared.
"Finally!" she said hautily, bending down to pick up her dufflebag.
Ron, Harry and Neville each carried bags similar to hers, their trunks levitating two feet in the air behind each of them. Hermione cast a similar charm on her trunk and headed toward the portrait entrance.
"I wonder who else got chosen for the program?" Neville asked to no one in particular as the quartet wound their way through the castle.
Harry shrugged. "I don't know. I imagine most of the school applied. I just hope Malfoy isn't."
In a matter of moments, the group turned the corner into the Great Hall and Harry abruptly stopped. Sure enough, no more than five feet away, Draco Malfoy was sitting on his trunk. He was staring listlessly around the room, seemingly lost without his goons. With a frustrated sigh, Harry turned his gaze to the ceiling. "I'm being punished, aren't I?"
"What are you doing here, Potter?" Draco started, his features twisting up into a sneer.
Before Harry could reply, Hermione answered for him. "The Study Abroad program, if you must know."
"No, no," Draco rose to his feet, unbelieving. "There must be a mistake."
"No, Mr. Malfoy. There is no mistake." Professor Snape replied approaching the assembled group.
"What? We have to live with him for an entire year!" Ron asked, angrily.
"Yes, Mr. Weasley. You will." Professor McGonagall interjected as she walked into the massive room leading Luna Lovegood, Ginny Weasley and Cho Chang into the room with their luggage. "And Professor Snape will be chaperoning you. Remember that this trip is a trial. If this does not go well, it will never happen again. So I hope that each and every one of you behaves yourself. Am I understood?"
"Yes, ma'am." They all chorused.
She huffed in approval and turned to discuss something with Severus.
The students tuned out the teachers conversation, looking at each other with malice.
"A whole year with you lot. This is going to be horrible." Draco hissed.
"Well, we aren't exactly looking forward to it either," Neville retorted. At that moment, a small delicate hand slipped into Neville's larger one. Neville looked down and smiled sheepishly into Luna's ice blue eyes.
"Oi! Look at this," Draco crowed. "Longbottom's got 'imself a girlfriend. How sweet!"
Ron glowered. "Shove off, Malfoy!" He brandished his wand at Malfoy.
"Ron, no!" Hermione cried out, stepping between Ron and Draco. "Do you want to get kicked out of the program before we even leave?"
Draco smirked behind her. "Better listen to your girlfriend, Weasley! Boy, didn't think you needed a girl to fight your battles for you."
Ron's brow furrowed in anger at the comment, and he raised his wand to cast but was quickly halted by the firm, no-nonsense look that Hermione shot him. Relucantly, he lowered his wand. Malfoy's smirk grew wider in satisfaction.
"Face it, Malfoy," Harry chimed in with a slight smile. "You're just jealous 'cause the three of us have something you don't." Harry indicated Luna, Ginny and Hermione beside their respective boyfriends. "Not to mention the fact that your goons deserted you."
Draco opened his mouth to retort when he was quickly silenced by McGonagall's invading voice.
"May I have your attention, everyone?" McGonagall addressed them. "You each will be given a modest budget for clothing and necessities. Until you board the outgoing Hogwarts Express, I must ask you to wear your school robes over the casual clothes you are now wearing. You are going to a muggle high school in South-Western Canada. It's a relatively modest-sized student body. It has been decided that all but Miss Weasley and Lovegood with be placed in the," she consulted the parchment in her hand, "Grade 12 classes. Whereas they with be in the," she looked at the parchment again. "Grade 10 classes. Remember, you will be interacting with muggle teenagers in very close quarters so magical devices will be confiscated from you before you leave the grounds of this school. You will be allowed to only keep your wands but are never to use them in mixed company. Is that understood?"
"Yes, Professor," everyone grumbled.
At that moment, Filch appeared carrying something that looked strangely akin to a flashlight -- obviously a magical device sensor of sorts. He passed the device over each student and their respective luggage looking for offending items, occasionally finding one and relieving the student of it. As he worked. McGonagall turned to Snape.
"Is there anything you would like to add, Severus?"
"Indeed." Snape replied curtly, assuming his most imposing stance. "I have but five rules. One: Any magic cast while in the company of muggles will result in expulsion from the program and you'll be sent you back to Hogwarts on a one-way broom for Professor McGonagall to deal with you. Two: You will keep a journal of your experiences which will be reviewed by me on a regular basis. Three: For the duration of this trip you will address me as 'Sir.' Not 'professor' nor 'Mister' -- and anyone to even attempt to call me 'Sevvy' will find themselves in infinite pain. Four: You will be required to participate in at least one extra-curricular activity which must also be discussed in your journals. And finally: Be on your absolute best behaviour. I am well aware of the mutual animosity you share. Any word of abuse or sabatose will be dealt with. Am I understood?"
"Yes, sir." They chorused again.
Snape nodded satisfactorily. "If you will take your trunks and head to the train, we will head off. When we reach London, only then will you receive your plane tickets before heading to the airport. When we touched down at the T.M.A., I will have additional instructions for you."
The flight overseas was relatively uneventful, save for a delayed take off and Malfoy's constant flirting with the stewardess. At one point, Malfoy had overheard the stewardess he had been hitting on asking Neville if he wanted to join the 'mile-high club.' To which Neville had innocently replied:
"I really don't fly that often to make it worthwhile."
Harry, who had been sitting between Neville and Malfoy, laughed out hard, spraying his coke out his nose.
Malfoy sat the rest of the flight in angery silence.
When the plane finally landed, Snape lead the group out of the terminal, all of them having changed by now out of their robes. Even Snape, who was wearing a rather well-tailored grey sports jacket and nice jeans. At the baggage claim, Snape turned to address the group.
"Attention, please. As mentioned before we had set off, you will each be given a weekly stiple of 20 Galleons which, roughly converted, is approximately $100 dollars in Canadian currency. You will receive no more than this on a weekly basis, so I suggest you spend it wisely. I have your envelopes with your initial allowance and your class schedules. The Ministry has arranged for a van to meet us out front of the airport. Since Miss Granger in the only one with a Muggle driver's license, I ask that she drive us to our destination." Severus said as he handed out the envelopes. "Collect your trunks."
"Sir," Ginny interjected meekly. "What about where we'll be living?"
Severus replied with barely a glance at the girl. "The Ministry has taken care of that as well."
Sure enough, a dark blue caravan waiting for them.
"Uhh," Harry started. "Sir, we're not all going to fit in there, not with the luggage as well."
Severus rolled his eyes in annoyance at Harry. "I assure you, Mr Potter, the vehicle is larger than it appears."
So the boys were given the task of hauling the trunks into the vehicle. When it came time for everyone to get themselves into the van, the kids were surprised to discover that the vehicle was indeed larger inside than it looked. Harry turned a questioning glance to Snape who, at that moment, was presently stowing his wand in the inside pocket of his jacket.
With Hermione's turn of the key in the van's ignition, and Snape's 'impeccable navigational skills' with the map, they were off to 3 Bidwell Street in Tillsonburg, Ontario.
It wasn't long before someone broke the ever-growing silence.
"How much further?" Malfoy asked, his voice tinged with annoyance.
"Farther," Hermione replied from the driver's seat.
"What?" Malfoy growled.
Hermione flicked her gaze to him via the rear view mirror. "Farther describes actual distance, further is more figurative."
"So you're a dictionary now?" he sneered.
"I'm sorry I'm smarter than you," Hermione retorted.
Approximately 30 minutes later. The van pulled up the driveway of a four story house (which included both a basement and attic). It also contained a living room, dining room and kitchen. The yard was bare save for a few maple and pine trees and bordered the rim of a large gully.
"Alright." Severus said, calling everyone's attention once again. "There are three large rooms on the second floor. The student rooms are on either side of the corridor leading to the upstairs lavatory: boys in one, girls in the other. Go unpack and settle in. Tea will be served promptly at 2o'clock, dinner at 6:30."
The boys grumbled under their breath at having to room together but did as instructed.
They found the rooms easily enough. Just as Snape had said, the rooms were separated by a short hallway that ended in a quite roomie washroom, complete with a sliding door shower. Opposite of the student rooms sat another bedroom, obviously Snape's room.
Inside the boys room, the walls were painted an off-white with a bed in each corner, a nightstand and dresser beside each, and large writing desk against the far wall with a large bookcase on either side. Ron had poked his head briefly into the girls room and saw that it was decorated in much the same way, except the walls were painted a dusty rose.
Quickly, the boys each chose a bed and heaved their trunks up onto the mattress to unpack.
Harry grabbed his dufflebag and dumped the entire contents onto his bed. Candy, toys, a laptop, three different types of GameBoys, a cd walkman, some cd's, a few articles of muggle clothing, and other various items were strewn across his mattress.
Malfoy crossed the room to scrutinize the muggle items. "What the bloody hell is all this?"
Harry shrugged. "Most of this stuff I never had a chance to use because of the anti-muggle technology enchantments around the castle." He grabbed the laptop and turned to put it on the writing desk. "I nicked the gameboys from my cousin Dudley's room last year before he and my aunt and uncle were relocated to safety."
Malfoy picked up one of the gameboys and turned it over in his hands. After a moment, he turned a questioning look to Harry. Harry smiled slightly, picked up his Pokemon Silver game, and held it out. Malfoy's hand darted out greedily and he retreated to his bed with the game and player in tow.
"What, no thank you?" Harry called after him.
"Yeah, whatever. I'll remember in my will, okay?" Malfoy grumbled as he fumbled to work the machine.
Neville watched as Harry tacked a poster at the head of his bed.
"Who's that?" Neville pointed at the poster. "Is it one of your household gods?"
Harry looked quizzically at his friend and then to the poster. It was a picture of the animated character Daffy Duck. Harry laughed out hard before replying. "That's Daf— Yeah, well, in a way I suppose it is. It's sort of the Egyptian god of frustration."
Neville seemed satisfied with the answer as he turned back to his own trunk. Behind him, Harry and Ron shared a silent chuckle.
It wasn't long before the boys had nearly everything unpack when a light knock souded on the closed door.
Cho's voice flitted through the crack between the door and it's frame.
Harry was the last to arrive downstairs. The tea set, polished silver and bright, had been laid out on the livingroom coffee table, and everyone else was seated around the room waiting for him.
"About time, Mr Potter," Snape said hautily
"Sorry," he replied meekly and sat down in the empty space on the couch between Ron and Ginny.
Snape leaned toward the table and began pouring the tea.
"Tomorrow, will be your first day of school so this evening we will head over to the local mall. There you will purchase clothing and school supplies. Remember, what you have is what you get. Buy necessities, then see to other needs. There are laundry facilities in the basement. For those unfamiliar with such things, I'm sure your roommates will aid you. There is a chore list written on the dry-erase board in the kitchen. It is written in permanent marker so it cannot be changed." Snape eyed the boys at the statement, seemingly relishing their groans of displeasure. "As for bathroom time, the schedule will be up to the eight of you to decide upon."
Ginny picked up a piece of melba toast from the tray. "Sir, what about magic? Are we not allowed to use it at all?"
"Magic will be used only in the confines of this structure, and only when deemed absolutely necessary," Snape replied. "This program is intended to give you an idea of how the other half of the world lives. You may decided you like the muggle way of things.
Malfoy dipped a cookie into his tea and popped it in his mouth. "I can't imagine anyone not wanting to use magic if given half the chance."
"For your information, Mr Malfoy," Snape growled, over the rim of his cup. "I've known many a witch and wizard who returned to the muggle world after leaving Hogwarts, rarely using their magic."
The rest of tea-time was had in silence.
"The Town Center Mall," Severus said as they walked up to the entrance. "We will be here until 9o'clock. You will need to see to some school clothes. This is a relatively small town so their schools do not have uniforms," Snape sneered at this, as if saying the words left a bad taste in his mouth. "Do not go wandering off alone, stay in groups of at least two. I will be waiting for you in the food court are down this way," he pointed to the right of where they stood. "Be on your best behaviour. Understand?"
"Yes, sir," they chorused as one before heading off.
For awhile, they stayed in one large mass, until they passed a clothing store causing Ginny and Cho to veer off. A minute later, they lost Hermione and Luna to a book store.
Looking around at the different stores, the boys tried to decide where to go first. Harry pointed to a store that expanded across a wall a good 25 ft. Above the entrance was a neon red sign that read "Zellers".
"How 'bout here? It looks like they have everything we might need," he suggested.
With no one having any better ideas, the others agreed and they went in.
After choosing a few outfits, the boys took to the change rooms to try on their clothes.
"Okay, guys, what about this? Do you think I could pull this off?" Ron asked coming out of his fitting room. Turning around in a full circle, he displayed the loud hawaiian-style shirt and brown corderoy pants he wore.
Neville pulled a face. "Ugh!" he replied. "Pull it off and throw it away!"
The boys laughed together as Ron headed back in to try on another outfit.
Next Malfoy emerged wearing and pair of tight acid-washed jeans and a black shirt that said "I used up all my sick days, so I'll calling in dead!" Malfoy admired his outfit in the mirror before he noticed a pair of teenage girls in the reflection. He turned to look and them and put on his most charming smile.
"Ladies," he said in that British drawl of his. Their response was to giggle wildly and run away, blushing. Malfoy looked immensely please with himself.
"That was fun," he said to no one in particular.
Neville, Ron and Harry's response was simply to roll their eyes in annoyance.
Once the boys had picked out a couple outfits each, they moved on the the school supplies department.
Remarkably, the excursion didn't take as long as any of them had expected. By the time they met back up, everyone was certain they had everything they would need for the time being with a few dollars each to spare. Satisfied with their purchases, and with as minimal grumbling as possible from Malfoy, they all headed of to meet back up with Snape.
Okay, this is my first HP fic. Please review and tell me what you think. Hopefully, the next chapter won't be far off.