written for tgs '12 days of christmas' and ilvermorny 'beaded bag: alphabet soup'
(character) Katie Bell
(phrase) leaving behind your footprints on the sands of time (derived from the Psalm of Life, William Wordsworth)
(phrase) mending hearts
9. nine ladies dancing: write about a ball
school, house: hogwarts, slytherin
word count: 527
a/n: sorry for this complete introspective weird symbolic trash idk what i'm doing and i was so uninspired for this
. . .
Looking at the jade dress in the mirror, Katie thinks, Do I really want to go?
Yes, you do, she tells herself. After him...you need to move on.
The room is silent but for her thoughts. She's doubtful. And after what happened with Adam, she's not sure if it's worth it.
Adam was a scumbag, she reminds herself. Oliver isn't.
. . .
So Katie Bell rides into the Yule Ball with that jade dress and an arm hanging on Oliver Wood's arm with a little bit of doubt and more than a little bit of apprehension.
They sway to the music and they're both feeling really awkward and they don't really know what to say.
"It was — it was nice of you to ask me," Katie says finally. "I — well, you know that Adam kid I dated last year?"
"What about him?" asks Oliver, concerned.
"He — he was cheating on me. And he didn't even try to hide it. He said I looked good next to him but I wouldn't give him what he wanted — and —"
"Katie," Oliver cuts her off softly. "I would never do that to you. And that's just kind of the way some people are, isn't it? You've got to let go and hope that there's someone else...you know, I got cheated on once, too. There was this Melinda girl…"
Katie laughs. "Melinda Song? What were you doing with her?"
"I wasn't thinking. I don't know — but anyway, my point is — I don't know if I'm the one for you or if someone else is. But you can't find anyone if you don't try."
It feels a little mellifluous, this moment. Katie likes that feeling — maybe it's that feeling of mending hearts or Christmas cheer. She doesn't really know, but it feels good.
"You know, someone told me once that life is like leaving your footprints in the sands of time...and I realize now — how do you do that if you're not walking? This — it's kind of like that, isn't it?"
"Who is this wise friend you speak of?"
Katie winks. "A magician never reveals her secrets."
. . .
And so that's how they end up moving on, even through the worst of the worst and exams and Umbridge. Katie knows that she needs to take a step, and so she holds Oliver's hands and runs with him, because there are those footprints, and maybe time is like sand in more than one way — sometimes the old footprints get washed or blown away, but then you get to make new ones with new people. And isn't that the charm of it all, really? Trying to keep your imprint in the world when it keeps leaving? That's just kind of how it works in the sands that are worlds and time — it's kind of about trying to leave your mark.
But for Katie and Oliver, it isn't. It's about having the strength to take those steps and keep moving and moving and hope that someday someone will stumble across their footprints. And if no one does, then they know they've seen each others'.