All Harry Potter characters and figures belong to J.K. Rowling and her affiliates. Unfortunately, all I own is the free will to twist them to my own maniacal creativity.
Hermione dropped her quill and sniffed the air suspiciously. Looking around her, she cautiously stood up from her table in the Gryffindor common room, ignoring the fact that it gave an ominous wobble and threatened to buckle under the weight of all her books and one very fat, orange cat curled on top of Arithmancy, A Guide To All Those Insane Enough to Enroll, Year 5.
Hermione, not a girl usually prone to sniffing, sniffed again. There it was… it kind of smelled like dirty gym socks and flowers that have been in a vase too long and have started to rot. Hermione's agile mind quickly leaped to three possibilities: 1.) the house-elves forgot to pick up Ron's shoes, 2.) some dirty gym socks and flowers were actually lying around somewhere, or 3.) a Weasley twin and/or Lee Jordan was somehow involved. And, considering that the house elves at Hogwarts were almost flawless in their cleaning skills, Hermione was prepared to bet that it was possibility number 3, which is why she carefully began to pick her way through the common room, on the alert for a sudden assault of Dungbombs. Hermione took her 5th year Prefect duties seriously, and she wasn't going to let her authority, or her homework time, slip away. She strained her ears to try to hear some sound, but the common room was absolutely empty- it was almost one 12:30 a.m., and almost all were already asleep. But then, she heard a low thump, and she quickly headed towards the portrait of the Fat Lady, convinced that the sound had come from outside.
Shivering slightly in the night air and treading carefully so as not to alert Ms. Norris, Hermione quickly rounded the corner, and heard a muffled snigger come from one of two huddle figures grouped around a statue of Bethilda the Baffled, a confused looking witch who seemed to be in the middle of asking a question. Her heart pounding a little faster, Hermione cleared her throat and walked officiously towards what she assumed were two boys.
"Boys, you are out way too…" her voice trailed off as she realized to whom she was talking to, and she bit the urge to laugh as the two boys jumped nervously to face her.
"Oh, it's you," she said, trying to hide her smile. Fred and George Weasley stood guiltily infront of her, trying to look innocent, a feat that could never be accomplished so long as their eyes held that devious, yet not unkind, sparkle.
"Hermione," said George, shifting his body so that Hermione could not see what they were doing.
"You're looking ravishing tonight," Fred added, winking cheerily at her. Hermione giggled.
"You know, I should take points off," Hermione began, and was prompty cut off by the twins.
"Oh come on Hermione," they wheedled. "We're just up, doing something to further our intellectual pursuits."
"Right," Hermione said knowingly, "Something that involves an unidentifiable thing that smells like Ron's shoes?"
"Oh," Fred said, looking at George. "We weren't aware that smell would carry…"
Hermione wanted to giggle again. As much as she hated the boy's rule-breaking habits, they did provide a little cheeriness in her hectic world of work.
"Well, actually," Fred began,
"It's a little something," George continued,
"For our dear old Snape..."
"You see, we specially made these packets of what we call 'Weez-Bombs'…"
"Sort of like Dungbombs, but better…"
"And we thought we'd plant a few in Bathilda's mouth, and jinx her to spit them out whenever Snapey-poo walked by…"
"He'd never know what hit him, until we start selling the Bombs, of course…"
Hermione smiled again in spite of herself. She was torn between her Prefect duties, and her desire to see Snape pelted with aweful smelling Weez Bombs. The Weasley Twins knew she wouldn't punish them, but she could at least draw the fun out a bit.
"Well, I dunno…" she said, wringing her hands. She saw Fred twitch, and smiled inwardly. "I would be neglecting my duties…"
"No! Of course you wouldn't!"
"Think of it as a duty to your House!" came the vehement denies.
"Oh, fine," she said. "But if I come under duress, I'm going to say that you threatened to force-feed me some of your Pumpkin Pies unless I didn't comply."
"Are you saying our cooking is bad?" Fred asked, looking offended. Hermione smiled.
"No, but I just don't want to sprout another head that will start to sing 'Greensleeves' whenever I try to answer a question."
"Well, good night you guys," she said, and the twins both beamed. "I expect to see that statue cleaned and rid of those Bombs by morning."
She walked back to the common room, knowing that the twins had both turned back to their project before hearing, and knew that Snape was bound to get a very nasty surprise the next day. Hermione shook her head, amazed that those two could be so irresponsible.
Hermione woke to the roars of an infuriated Snape the next morning, and decided that this was the best way to start a day. While all of Gryffindor House excitedly filed out to see what happened, Hermione slowly got dressed and headed to the Great Hall for some breakfast before her Muggle Studies, sauntering past a glowering Snape who seemed to be rooted to the spot. Nice touch, she thought, while covering her nose with her hand…
She sat down at one of the tables and pulled a pot of pumpkin juice towards her. She was joined a little bit later by Harry and Ron (Did you see Snape? Bloody brilliant!) and eventually the twins, who were flushed with success.
"Did you see what happened to Snape?" Ron asked excitedly, meanwhile trying to cram some scrambled eggs into his mouth. The result was a majestic spewing of egg, but nobody but Hermione seemed to care. She sighed: she needed more girlfriends.
"Yeah, mate," Fred said, winking at Hermione. She raised her eyebrow to let him know she saw, and proceeded to eat. "Pretty brilliant, if I say so myself." George smirked.
"Did you have something to do with it?" Harry asked, noticing the smugness of the twins.
"How then?" asked Ron, "I mean, you must have done it at night, and I would have bet that you would have been caught and punished by a Prefect…I mean, I should have caught you, but I was asleep… and I had the strangest dream about this Niffler that was madly in love with me…"
At this Hermione coughed and sputtered some of the juice onto her books. She quickly wiped her face and glared at the twins.
"Oh, well, you know," Fred said complacently. "We get by." Harry noticed Hermione's reaction and grinned- the only oblivious person seemed to be Ron, who proceeded to cram his mouth with food.
"So, about that niffler, Ron…" Hermione started, trying to change the subject.
Muggle Studies was one of Hermione's favorite courses. Professor Marsh (a/n Does anyone know the Muggle Studies prof's name?) had allowed Hermione to move up to the 7th year level, and while this meant more time with the Weasley Twins and Lee Jordan, she found the course to be interesting and the work load not unbearable.
"Today, class" began Professor Marsh, her voice still clear despite her old age. "We will begin to immerse ourselves into a very common practice in muggle culture. We will study it, while at the same time living it, to give us a complete understanding and appreciation for what they do. What I'm talking about, of course, is the muggle ritual of flour-babies." Hermione's head jerked up. Uh oh.
"In many a muggle school class, students are paired off and are assigned a sack of flour (a gross imitation of a human baby, if you ask me) and are to act as it's "parents". Students feed this baby (pretend, of course), clothe it, change it's diaper (though a sack of flour cannot produce too many nasty diapers), wake up in the middle of the night to feed it… you get the idea. It is meant to teach responsibility, and to foster a sense of accountability for another human being. Now, I believe flour to be a weak substitute for the real thing, so we will use something else. You will be using a 'Tele-baby', an object that is bewitched to look, eat, scream, and act like a real baby, but in reality it just a mold of plastic. Don't get me wrong- it's just like having one of your own, and you will have it for the six weeks until Christmas break. Now, here is the syllabus," Professor Marsh waved her wand and papers appeared on everyone's desk.
"I am going to assign the partners now…" Marsh started. All the girls started giggling, and Hermione sighed. She should have stuck with 5th year Muggle Studies. At least then she didn't have to take care of yet another burden in her life.
Marsh conjured up a pair of tiny reading glasses, perched them on her nose, cleared her throat, and began to read. The class rustled into quietness.
"Hunter, you're with Kent Gardner…" Giggles.
"Jordan, you're with Spinnet." Lee Jordan got a high-five from George.
"Angelina Johnson, aaaand Greg James."
Hermione was nervous.
"Granger, and… oh, dear…" Mrs. Marsh gave Hermione an almost pitying look…"You're with Fred Weasley."
After Professor Marsh had announced that the project would start the next day with the arrival of the baby on the girl's, Hermion stole a glance at Fred. Unfortunately, he was too busy having a mock fight with Lee Jordan using a couple of dragon finger puppets that shot flames. Hermione sighed. Great. This was going to be the father of her baby, and he was acting like a 6-year old.
"Hermione, what's wrong?" Ginny asked later that day, at lunch.
"Oh nothing, Ginny. Just that Fred Weasley is going to be the father of my baby."
And not for the first time that day, Ginny, Ron, and Harry choked on their pumpkin juice and nearly avoided giving Hermione a premature shower.
A/N: I was sort of combing through ideas for a new story, and this is what resulted. Please tell me what you think! Email me, drop a line, anything. Thanks!