Harry Potter and the Anger Management Experiment
"Harry, I've been thinking…"
"Hermione, you're always thinking," Harry said in exasperation. He rubbed at the scar on his forehead, it was an uncomfortable pins-and-needles sort of feeling.
"Well, its just… and please don't be angry at me for this, but we know now just how important it is for you to study Occlumency and everything, but Ron told me you still haven't been having much luck."
He glared, "I'm trying, all right!? I'm supposed to rid myself of emotions and stuff, but you can't just turn it on and off like a tap! I'm a wizard, not a jedi!"
She made a kind of 'calm down' sort of motion and Harry realized he'd stood up and the other students in the Common Room were looking at him.
"See? This is exactly what I'm talking about. So I started to read up on a way to help."
Harry blinked, "They have books about this?"
"Of course! I admit that most of the wizarding books weren't very helpful. I read through 'How to be an Unfeeling Bastard' 'Emotion Spells for Everyone" and even 'Feelings are for the Weak' by T.M.R. before I realized that I was looking in the completely wrong place!" She thumped the arm of her chair, her eyes shining in some kind of academic frenzy.
"You were?" Harry said weakly.
"Yes! And I found the answer! Muggle Therapy! I read about it all summer. There are some very good books on the subject…Anger Management, Psychoanalysis and so on. And if I may say, you could stand getting in touch with your inner child, Harry."
"Well that's really not important now." Hermione waved a hand dismissively. "But I wanted to show you something. Will you come with me? We have loads of time before curfew, and you've finished your homework for once."
Harry hesitated. Hermione was a brilliant witch, but some of her ideas were more than a little…harebrained. //Well, she did come up with the DA. Guess I should go see at least.// That and he felt a little guilty for snapping at her earlier.
So he followed her up a familiar set of stairs across from the tapestry of very un-ballet-like trolls. "The Room of Requirement?"
"Perfect, isn't it? Such a clever room," she smiled, "You know, Harry, I think I've been too hard on you and Ron about Quiddich," she said as she started to pace.
"You have?" Talking to Hermione always left him feeling like he was a step behind and to the left.
"Yes, you see, I thought it was all just a silly game that promoted class rivalries and an unjust system of popularity based on how well someone can perform physically. But I understand now." She turned and started her second pass.
"Yes! You were working off your natural aggressions! No wonder you were so snippy last year, not being able to fly." She finished her third pass and a smooth silver handle appeared in the wall.
She pulled it open and the two of them stepped into a wide and mostly empty room. Soft yellow lights lined the ceiling casting a gentle glow. In the center of the room there was a soft foam bat and a series of inflatable dolls; the kind with the weighted bottom so if you knocked them down they sprang back up again.
Harry who had been expecting padded walls and a leather couch, was greatly relieved. "I thought you were going to make me lay down and talk about how Uncle Vernon never loved me," he said in bewilderment.
She smiled again. "Oh don't be silly. It takes years of training to become a proper psychologist. But I thought it would be nice if you could work out your aggressions in a safe, controlled sort of way."
"So what are these then?" He pointed at the dolls. Each of them had a crude sort of face and hair.
"Do you like them? I painted them myself," she said proudly. Hermione's artistic ability seemed to be rivaled only by her knitting ability. "I did all the people you hate."
"I have Professor Snape," she said patting one with a quantity of black paint splashed about.
"Vernon Dursley." To a particularly round doll with a bushy moustache.
"Dudley Dursley." An even rounder, but somewhat shorter doll.
"Petunia Dursley." The doll was tall and thin and looked ready to topple over.
"Umbridge." A pink and yellow doll with a wide slash of a mouth.
"Malfoy." A blond poncy looking doll.
"Aaaaaannnnd….Voldemort!" This one was particularly silly, painted green with red eyes. It looked less like a arch-nemesis and more like a Christmas decoration. "I wasn't sure what he actually looked like. I was passed out for that part last year, but I figured snake-like would be all right."
"What's that one over there?" Harry asked pointing to one with a very piggish sort of nose.
"Pansy Parkinson….that cow."
He blinked, "But I don't hate Pansy Parkinson."
Hermione rolled her eyes. "Harry, you don't' think you're the ONLY one with aggressions to work out, do you?"
She gave him a fond pat on the shoulder. "Well, have at it. Hit, yell, curse, jinx…the room is quite soundproof." Then she handed him the foam bat and left the room.
Harry looked at 'Voldemort.' "This is stupid," he said and poked him with the bat. The green doll wobbled backwards and popped back up. It was kind of funny. He gave it a harder poke. It sprang back to attention.
Harry grinned. This may not be such a bad idea after all.
1. So everyone and their mother has probably thought of this...but I don't care. I'm writing it anyway! Mwa ha ha. I thought it was funny.