TITLE: Only in Ravenclaw
CHARACTERS: Cho Chang, Roger Davies, Marietta Edgecombe
SUMMARY: Friendships and fun in the Ravenclaw common room. Written in late 2005.

"Agh!"

"That's what you get for enchanting the Cluedo board." Cho Chang looked up sweetly from where she was marking her list of suspects, rooms, and weapons. "Mrs. White does not like being falsely accused of murder."

"So it appears," Roger Davies said with a wince, rubbing his hand where the angry, little white game piece had poked the little metal candlestick into him. "I'll have you know that was much more painful than it looks."

Cho giggled. "Of course it was, you big wuss." She flashed him a smile, still feeling giddy over the fact he was actually here. It had taken a lot of prodding and persuading, but Cho had managed to drag Roger away from his NEWTs studying to come have fun in the common room. Cho was not one to shy away from studying, but as April of her seventh year drew to a close, she was starting to realise that what she would miss most about Hogwarts was not the classes and not even the boys, but just the ability to be around her friends all the time. She was resolved to, at the very least, balance studying and schoolwork with friends and fun, and now that she had roped Roger into a game of Cluedo with her and Marietta, Cho was feeling rather accomplished.

After marking off one last box, Cho looked over at Marietta. "It's your turn, Mari...oh."

Marietta, having been ignored while Roger had deliberated over his accusation choices, was propped up against one of the common room couches, snoring softly.

Roger snorted in amusement. "At least she didn't witness me getting injured."

"Oh, I'm sure tales of your exploits will reach her." Cho set down her pad of paper, wondering whether or not to wake her friend. "You put up quite a fight, after all."

"That's right." Roger tentatively flicked the white game piece, and it gave a tiny shout in protest. He glanced over at Cho. "But we can't play with just two people."

"Maybe we can rope Peeves into playing with us," Cho said with a small smile.

"He'd cheat," Roger said with a grin, leaning back against the couch. "And he'd probably rile up all the little game pieces and then they'd attack me. I bet that little knife really hurts, too."

Cho's stomach fluttered; she had been half-afraid that he'd take this opportunity to go back to studying, but now it looked like he was settling in. To chat. With her. "Peeves has a way of causing chaos, I suppose."

"Maybe Yoda over there wants to play," Roger said, nodding to a portrait resting facedown on the floor.

"Why's the Yoda portrait upside down?" Cho asked, frowning. She liked the Yoda portrait--it was a recent addition to the common room, brought back over Christmas holidays by a fifth-year, and Cho had found Yoda's wisdom a welcome change from some of the more vapid talking portraits.

"Michael Corner hexed the portrait to say some, uh, inappropriate things." Roger Davies, the self-proclaimed ladies man of Ravenclaw, actually blushed. "Yoda and Lovegood were deep into discussion this morning, and I had the misfortune of overhearing one of them saying, 'A better option, self-pleasure is.' So, uh, Flitwick says the portrait's going to stay facedown until the hex wears off."

"Oh." Cho felt her face flush. "Oh."

"Um. Just a normal day in Ravenclaw Tower, though, huh?" Roger gave Cho a sheepish smile, then gestured over to one of the opposite corners, where two fifth-years were huddled conspiratorially over a nearly-empty bottle of butterbeer. "Bradley and Rickenwalker have been experimenting with replenishing charms. I'd be careful if you go near them; they actually replenished Lisa Turpin's homework earlier today."

"Good to know," Cho said with a smile. "And see that...oh dear, it's a wig, I suppose...over there?" She pointed to one of the couches by the fireplace, where a rainbow coloured wig sat in an undignified heap. "If you want to talk about odd happenings in the common room, Lovegood was wearing that today. It was a call for house unity, apparently."

Roger shook his head, still smiling. "Lovegood. Her antics get old, but she's...she's definitely amusing."

"I might actually miss her 'antics' after leaving here." Cho said this quietly, sneaking a hesitant glance over at Roger. "I'll probably miss all of the madness."

Roger gave her a quizzical look. "What do you mean?"

Cho drew in her breath, evaluating the common room. You couldn't sit down on a couch without knocking over a book or two, and you couldn't ever get a moment's peace, between chess games turned violent, experiments gone wrong, and the latest pranks and tricks from one of the many creative geniuses of the house. As messy and chaotic as the common room was, though, there was no place Cho would rather be.

"It's nice here," Cho said vaguely, looking down at her hands and suddenly feeling shy. "The people here. Having this place. The outside world's not like that, you know?"

Roger went quiet for a moment, then said, "No. It's not."

"A lot scarier, too," Cho said. As soon as she said it, she regretted it--bringing the war into a casual conversation usually meant disaster, and she didn't want to drive Roger away.

"A lot scarier," he echoed in agreement, his voice catching.

Cho spoke again quickly. "But I suppose there's no choice in the matter. Can't stay here for another year, unless I fail all my NEWTs," She managed a slight smile.

"And hey, if we can survive seven years in Ravenclaw, we can survive anything," Roger said, straightening up. "It's a disaster zone sometimes, isn't it? Threats from the inside, threats from the outside--"

"Threats from the outside?"

"Oh yeah," Roger said, with a wry smirk. "Look out the window. See the Giant Squid out there? He's been stalking...or swim-stalking, I suppose...back and forth all day, his eyes on the Tower. I think he's planning an attack."

Cho craned her neck, trying to see out the window, but she could only see the vague shadow of the Giant Squid in the dark of the night. She turned to Roger. "I hope you're kidding," she said, with an amused smile. "I'm going to have nightmares now, of the Squid staging a stealth attack to stage a coup and take over Hogwarts."

"Not Hogwarts, just Ravenclaw Tower. Really, we're the only ones worth staging an attack for."

Cho was about to comment, but was interrupted by someone banging through the common room door, yelling behind him, "Peeves, I'll get you for this! Ugh!" Cho could hear Peeves' manic laughter echoing in the outside hallway, and she wondered what had happened as Anthony Goldstein stomped through the common room, drenched in some brown liquid.

The sounds apparently shook Marietta awake. She sat up sharply, mid-snore. "What--oh..." She sleepily waved her game sheet. "It was Colonel Mustard, in the conservatory, with the lead pipe."

Roger grabbed the envelope with the answers and checked them. He dramatically quirked an eyebrow, making Cho giggle. "Miss Edgecombe, how in the world did you manage that?"

Marietta shrugged, stretching lazily. "Wasn't it obvious?"

"No. How'd you do it?"

She gave them a sly smile. "Terry Boot marked the backs of the cards with an ink that can only be seen when you're looking for it. I just looked at the backs of the cards you both were holding and figured it out through a process of elimination." She grinned, standing up. "Good night, kids." With a wave, she headed up to her room.

Cho and Roger both turned their cards around. Sure enough, now that she knew it was there, Cho could clearly see letters, or symbols, perhaps, written there. "What are these letters?" she asked, frowning.

"Elder Futhark," Roger confirmed. "Obviously the work of an Ancient Runes nerd." He grinned. "Only in Ravenclaw, huh?"

Cho grinned back. "Only in Ravenclaw."