A/N: It takes place after the 5th year… Harry/O.C, Hermione/Krum

"Argh, I have to go!" the girl said urgently, though a small smile lit her face.

Harry Potter smiled back and gave a slight nod.

"I'm going to be late for detention and Filch is going to skewer me-" she said in a rush, grabbing her books, which were flung out all over the halls (partly Harry's fault). Harry helped her with an amused glint in his eyes that wouldn't disappear.

"Stop it, will you?" she exclaimed, catching a glance at his expression.

"I'm not doing anything," Harry grinned.

"Stow it, I know you're about to blow with laughter, you twit," she shook her head, scanning the floor for her quill. A chuckle escaped Harry's lips upon hearing her words but she was too busy collecting herself to notice. She grabbed the final piece of parchment Harry held out with his hand and darted away. Harry shook his head as he watched her leave.

It was Harry's second week in his sixth year at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry and this was the third time he had bumped into that specific girl. Each and every time, one or both of them were in a hurry and hadn't thought of introductions. Their meetings were slowly becoming habit and they were acting quite friendly with each other now, though the only thing Harry knew about her was that she was a Ravenclaw-and he only knew that by looking at her robes. She was a funny one, that girl.

Harry had never been all that familiar with the Ravenclaws, with the exception of his sort-of first girlfriend Cho Chang. He had had a crush (more than that, she was quite possibly his first love) on the beauty since his third year and just last year the two had finally gone out. Officially, they had only gone out the one time, and the one time they had kissed, she had been crying. Things hadn't worked out wonderfully between the two. Now, she was in her final year here and though they were on friendly terms, Harry doubted romance would ever be a viable road anymore. Last he had heard she was still cozy with a bloke named Michael Corner.

Harry continued his way up to the library, half-smile still lingering on his face. He quickly glanced around at the students occupying the room and almost instantly spotted his best friend ever since Hogwarts started: Ron Weasley. With his bright red-orange hair and tall, long-limbed appearance, he wasn't exactly easy to miss.

"What was the delay? You were only a few steps behind me," Ron said.

"Oh, I ran into that Ravenclaw again," Harry answered, sitting down at the table.

"Ah, the clumsy girl?" Ron grinned. "You know, you've been rather clumsy yourself lately. Not purposely trying to crash into things as a way to meet girls, are you?"

Harry laughed and lightly thwacked Ron's arm. "Oh shut up, of course not."

"As if Harry would need to resort to that to get the attention of anyone! Or have you seriously not noticed the giggles that follow him wherever he goes?" Dean smirked from his spot across the table.

"Aw, stuff it…!" blushed Harry. It was true, though. Harry's continued heroism had led to the inevitable development of his very own Potter fan club. To change the subject, Harry asked, "Where's Hermione?"

"Writing love letters to Krum," Ron rolled his eyes. "She didn't deny it this time, either. Honestly, he's a duck-footed, surly, incomprehensible…"

"You asked for his autograph," Harry pointed out. "And you drooled over him about as much as the girls did."

Ron glared at his friend and muttered, "That's beside the point."

"Ron, just because Hermione's gotten herself a boyfriend doesn't mean you have to sulk for ten years. Though I'd be worried if I were you, both your best friends already with a first relationship under their belt… I'm sure you won't be alone forever." Dean grinned. Harry let out a guffaw and a moment later, Ron had thrown his textbook at both their heads.

The next day was Saturday and also the beginning of a new Quidditch season. After Umbridge left and Dumbledore was re-instated, Harry's privileges had been given back to him. A wonderful thing too, for Harry did not think he would have survived the summer if he hadn't been able to at least fly to get his mind blank for at least a portion of his waking hours. He was in denial about all the recent events. In his short life, Harry had already had to live with intense trauma. He had been able to adequately cope… But last year was too much. Harry had lost the closest thing to a father he had known…and it was his own fault. Essentially, he had murdered his godfather Sirius Black. The guilt would have killed Harry way before now if his body hadn't launched itself into immediate shock and denial. For the past few weeks, he had been cheerful. It was odd, no doubt, but no one questioned him. People just acted as if things were like they used to be…as if their lives were still normal. They were touché around him and probably relieved to see him appearing all right and unscathed. Relieved to see he had not continued with his angry out bursts. Harry didn't mind the arrangement; he wouldn't bring up Sirius and neither would any one else. It was the only way he could function. Besides, no one could see how hurt he was inside… Neither Ron, Dean, Seamus, nor Neville had ever noticed Harry lying awake night after night. He was going by maybe four hours of sleep everyday, fuelled by his built-in autopilot to keep going to class, his obligation to be the strong one that the others could rely on. He hadn't broken down before and he was going to hold out on breaking down now if he could. The others needed him to. He was the Boy Who Lived; after all, he had to be there for his friends, he had to be cheerful.

"HARRY!" an annoyed voice yelled. A moment later, a bludger nearly rammed itself into Harry's chest. With a jolt, Harry swerved to the side just in time, missing the bludger by a hair.

"What the bloody-!" Harry gasped. He whirled around to see who it was who had so gracefully tried to maim him when practice hadn't even started yet.

"Finally, Potter! I've been screaming at you for the past five minutes!" Angelina Johnson called up, motioning for him to land.

"Angelina?" Harry raised his eyebrows in surprise as he headed to the ground. Once his feet were firmly against the grass, he continued, "I thought you graduated last year?"

"I did. You know how the toad Umbridge completely wrecked our Quidditch season last year, and though I'm not as fanatic as Oliver was… I was concerned about the team. And McGonagall felt bad that I had such a turbulent term as team Captain… so she said she would let me pick my replacement." Angelina explained. "Not that I needed reassurance, but seeing you out here zooming around the pitch feverishly a half hour before practice normally begins proves how obvious my decision is. Harry, how would you like to be the new Gryffindor team captain?"

"What?" Harry's jaw dropped.

"I'm choosing you. You are my first and only choice, really, for the position. Though Katie would be an okay alternative if you down right refuse… So, what do you say?" she said.

"Me?" Harry blurted. "Captain?"

"Potter, how about you stop with the one word responses?" Angelina said slightly impatiently.

"Angelina, are you absolutely sure you want me for captain?" Harry exclaimed, still very surprised.

She smiled and put her hand on Harry's shoulder. "You're amazing at this game. You were born to play it. And I've seen how much you care about it, too. You've got the skill, competitiveness, devotion, and leadership needed. Honestly, I can't think of anyone better or more qualified for Captain. I actually think you may be over qualified. Quite frankly, I was surprised that I was made Captain last year and not you."

"I-I don't know what to say…" Harry answered, turning slightly red from the praise.

"Say you'll win Gryffindor the Quidditch Cup." Angelina grinned.

"How can I refuse-? I'd love to, Angelina! Thanks," Harry's face split into a wide smile.

"I know you won't let all this praise get to your head," the older girl teased.

"Really, thanks, Angelina!" he said gratefully.

"You deserve this, Harry. Ah, I see the rest of the team's coming down at last. I only came back today to tell you in person. I can't stay to watch your first practice, I'm sorry to say. However, I might be able to sneak away to watch your first game." Angelina said. "You'll do me proud, Harry, or I'll round up Wood and we'll give you a crash course on how to be Quidditch Captain!"

Harry laughed but he couldn't help but get an image of Angelina and Wood waving game plans in his face while lecturing him about every motivational speech ever used in the human language. He wouldn't put it past Wood to march down here, professional Quidditch or not.

Angelina and Harry said their good byes and Angelina gave a short wave to her approaching former teammates before she departed. Harry smiled as his team gathered around the pitch.

"Guys…I'm your new captain," Harry grinned, blushing modestly. Pride, pleasure, excitement, and the first real feeling of peace in a long while washed over Harry as the other Gryffindor Quidditch players whooped and he donned the role of captain for the first time. Not a bad way to start a fresh year…

A/N: So, what do you think? You like it, you loathe it, you love it, you want to burn it...? Any and all input welcome. Constructive criticism would be great! Pleeease Review!