Chapter 10 - Hospital Wing Part 2
Albus felt a grin alight his features as he saw his brother James enter the Hospital Wing, closely followed by his red haired cousin, Fred.
He quickly walked towards them, his green eyes happy, "Why are you guys here?"
"More like, how could we not be here, mate? It's tradition to sneak out in the middle of the night!" Fred spoke, clapping a firm hand onto Albus's shoulder.
"Midnight." mumbled a voice behind the red haired boy.
Albus raised his head slightly to look past his taller cousin. A plump, unremarkable boy with a dull air came into his sight.
"What was that, Ethan?" Fred asked sharply, his brown eyes sparkling in irritation.
"Nothing!" Ethan replied hurriedly, his boring eyes moving left and right in a nervous manner.
Albus looked away from Ethan and instead turned to his brother.
"Why are you really here?"
"To give you a present Al." James ran a hand through his raven hair, looking just like his namesake.
"And this present couldn't wait until morning?" Arianna sarcastically asked, speaking up for the first time.
Fred and James jumped slightly, while Ethan shrieked and clung onto Fred.
"Get off man!"
"Who the hell are you?" Fred asked, his voice lowered a little, mindful of the slumbering nurse a few rooms away.
"That's Arianna. She's a friend." Albus introduced the brunette to his brother and cousin.
"You're the Snape, right?" James asked, his brown eyes narrowing in fascination.
"More like the snake, James." Fred snarled, his upper lip drawing back to reveal his teeth. His eyes were hardened, a look of anger and deep hatred in his eyes.
"Fred?" Albus hesitantly asked, unable to comprehend why his cousin was looking at Arianna with such malice in his expression.
"I won't start anything now, Albus."
"How magnanimous of you." Arianna couldn't resist putting in.
"Why you…" Fred started for the bed but James stepped in front of him.
"Maybe we should do what we came to do and then leave, right Fred?"
The redhead was still looking dangerously at the defiant girl, who glared right back at him, challenge in her eyes.
"Fred," James spoke in warning, "Now is not the time."
Fred shook himself and locked eyes with James, "You're right."
"So, what's the present?" Albus said, trying in vain to dissolve the tension in the room.
James turned to his brother, a mischievous expression on his face. "Well, little bro, you know how Fred and I always get into trouble…."
"Yes, you go looking for it."
"Don't interrupt Albus! Now where was I?" James was now reaching behind his back, his eyes sparkling.
Fred picked up after him, "Trouble! Despite the fact that Minnie's always trying to catch us and put us in detention…."
"You really should stop calling McGonagall that; she's going to kill you…."
"Ethan! Keep quiet!"
"The fact is, my dear brother," here James whipped out a wad of old parchment, "we have a secret weapon."
"Weapon?" Ethan squeaked.
"Idiot! He's talking about the map!"
"Oh. Ok then."
"What Map? Albus asked, his curiosity reaching to unbearable heights.
"The Marauder's Map!" James and Fred sang together, horribly off tune.
"The what map?"
The parchment was thrust into Albus' hand.
"The Marauder's Map!" the two older boys said impatiently again.
Albus slowly unfolded the parchment, revealing it to be a blank expanse of white.
Fred opened his mouth to speak when he stole a look at Arianna, "Maybe we should give it to him in a more private setting…."
"It's okay, I trust her." Albus said absentmindedly, not looking up from the parchment that he was running his fingers across.
A strange expression flitted across Arianna's face, so quick that no one noticed it.
"Tap it with your wand and say, I solemnly swear that I am up to no good." Fred instructed.
Albus did exactly what Fred said and gasped as ink began to appear on the map, lines snaking across the paper until a detailed outline of something could be seen.
"It's a map of the castle!"
"It's not just a map. It also shows you where everyone is! It's also yours!"
"Really?" Albus clutched the map towards him, finding it unbelievable that his brother was being so nice to him.
"Maybe it's because you got into Gryffindor instead of Slytherin," A tiny voice at the back of his head spoke.
Ignoring the voice, he jumped out of the bed and hugged James and Fred.
"Thanks you guys! But, what about you?" the green eyed boy furrowed his lip in worry, wondering what the pranksters would do without their map.
"Oh, don't you worry about us. We have our own one," Fred waved off Albus' worries nonchalantly.
"Yeah, just remember; when you're done with it, tap it again and say mischief managed."
"Guys, we should really be going."
"Who asked you Ethan? We'll go when we say so!"
"Shall we go then, Fred?"
"You totally just ignored my point."
"Yeah, ok. Come on." After wishing his brother goodnight, the elder Potter grabbed his friends and exited the Hospital Wing.
"Thanks again, you guys! Good night!" Albus called after them and then settled down to examine the map.
"Sorry Arianna. But this is so cool!" he whispered.
"I suppose." Arianna said and ducked her dark head under the pillows, ready to go back to sleep.
"Oh don't even pretend that you don't think this is cool."
"I'm not pretending."
Albus smiled at her stubbornness and looked down at the Map, "Wow, I can even see Hagrid in his cabin."
A warm weight soon deposited itself next to him. Albus lifted his head up to see Arianna's dark eyes alarmingly near his.
"Move over, I want to see."
"Sorry." Albus shifted aside to let her have room to sit and they both pored over the map, Albus exclaiming at certain intervals and Arianna shushing him every time.
When the first rays of dawn began to filter through the window, they wiped the map clean and Arianna got back into her own bed.
Just before Albus drifted off, Arianna whispered, "Maybe it's a little cool."
He went to sleep with a smile on his face, dreaming of maps and the exciting new classes that awaited him in just a few hours.
A/N - Ok, I apologise for being so late with this. I started up a site for a 19 Years Later RPG and I was really busy working on it. We need new members desperately so please sign up. Link's below.
http: / / www . 19yearslaterhp . proboards50 . com / v45index.cgi?
Just remove the spaces.