A Less Than Perfect Day.
To say there was no great love lost between Myself and Oliver Wood, would be an understatement.
The words Cat and Dog spring to mind.
Oh, don't get me wrong, you could hardly say that we hated each other, because neither of us really cared about the other enough to muster the kind of energy that would take. To be honest, we do have our moments where we can be downright civil to each other. But, the fact of the matter remains that we argue, a lot. Too much, too often, to consider each other friends. If I was completely honest, I'd have to say it was due to a major clash in personalities; something that neither of us can really be blamed for. But, how often are you completely truthful about about someone you're biased towards?
Ask us who was to blame, and we would both say the other.
Wood would tell you that I'm sarcastic, loud, rude, and stubborn.
I would tell you that Wood is arrogant, egotistical, controlling, and entirely too full of himself.
All of the above is true ... especially the bit about Wood.
So, as the intelligent magical beings that we are (or, well, at least I am), we have done our best to avoid each other, avoid winding each other up (yeah right), and generally keep our time at Hogwarts as peaceful as possible (no chance). We were just never meant to be more than people who (very) occasionally tolerated each other.
Or, so I thought, that is, until the interfering little sod that calls himself Fate got his (and believe me; Fate IS a man) greasy little hands all over my sodding life, and decided it needed to be royally rucked.
Don't understand? Yeah, well, welcome to my world.
Prefect meetings had to be the biggest waste of time ever. There was absolutely no point to them. We would sit through the most boring two hours of the week (and I'm including Binns here), be given a list of Prefectly duties to be carried out, of which no one would do anything assigned to them (unless it was used to aid their own Mischief making), and we would drink tea. Responsibility just isn't a well known concept to my generation.
There was always the odd one or two who seemed to take responsibility very seriously. Take for example: Oliver-if-I-Don't-Put-A Trillion Percent- Into- Everything-I-Do-The-Bogey-Monster-Will-Eat-Me-Wood, who did everything by the sodding book (and believe me, there is one). And as a result: I got dragged along in his really annoying wake.
At least, he wasn't as bad as our darling Head Boy: Percy Weasley. Now that's a face worth breaking a nail over. Or, preferably, after it's lodged itself in his eyeball. Oh to dream ... but reality awaits.
A slight shift to my left brought my attention back to the meeting at large, and I turned to look at my Prefect-In-Crime. Or, not, as was the case. I snorted derisively at him, draped comfortably over his chair, his full attention on Percy-Respect-My-Authority-Weasley, who was stood talking at the front of the room.
But, my snort had obviously caught his attention though, because he was watching me out the corner of his eye now, jaw tense. I smirked. I couldn't help it, because Merlin knows I love to wind him up when there's nothing he can do about it.
A scowl creased his face, and my smirk widened into a grin.
Especially when I'm so good at it.
Over my shoulder someone else snorted too, and Wood's scowl deepened as he twisted in her chair to see who had laughed. Paige Judge, it would appear. Lovely girl; I always did like her. Sort of.
He turned back, and his glaring eyes settled on me. It was a fight and a half to keep myself from laughing outright at the look of annoyance stretched across his face. He looked momentarily as if her were going to say something, but as these things go, I was saved by the ... err, twat.
"Excuse me Children, but do you think you could behave yourselves?" Percy drawled, pompously. I shot him a nasty look.
I will if you go drown yourself in the lake.
"Sorry Perse," we mumbled turning our attention back to the Head Boy, who, it now appeared, had set up a projected slid show. Merlin. No.
I gave a soft whine. "Wood, kill me now," I muttered, and was rewarded with a quiet chuckle, and to my surprise it hadn't been a mocking one. Upon looking up at him, I discovered a genuine smile of amusement curling at the corners of his mouth.
I was struck, not for the first time, by just how good looking Oliver Wood was when he wasn't scowling, smirking, or screaming at you. Because, Oliver Wood, make no mistake, was a phenomenally good looking man. And, he was well aware of this fact. Soft brown hair that curled ever so slightly, big, honey coloured eyes, a strong jaw, high cheek bones sharp enough to cut, and lips that any girl, myself not withstanding, would have killed for.
Yes, so he was entirely too good looking, and I wasn't exactly on the best of terms with him.
I do love the situations I get myself into.
Now, don't go thinking I fancy him, because I don't. At all. I'd have to be able to talk to him for any amount of time without kicking off. And, there was about as much chance of that happening as Hagrid becoming Minister for Magic. And, I certainly wouldn't want anyone else, least of all Wood himself, thinking I fancy him either. That would be bad.
"Miss West, when you're quite finished staring at Mr Wood ..." Percy again.
Well, sod it.
An hour later, I swung out of the room in a whirl of black robes, my mood hitching momentarily as I considered the impressive figure I must have made. I had one priority at the moment, and that was to put as much space as possible between myself, the class room and, most importantly, Wood.
Because, there was one, single thought swirling through my head at that moment in time: Humiliation, thy name is Sean.
As long as I could avoid Wood until after I'd suffocated myself, I'd be all right.
I ignored Wood's shout from behind me, and I picked my pace up slightly.
I could see the tapestry of Wilbur the Warty ahead of me; there was a short cut behind it. If I could just get to it ...
"West." His voice was much closer this time, and I nearly lost my footing when a hand grabbed hold of my arm, and swung me around. For a fleeting second there was the hope that it wasn't Wood who had used his seemingly inhuman speed to catch up with me. But, alas, Life's a bitch, and there stood Misery himself. Excellent.
"Generally, when a person calls your name, it's considered polite to stop and acknowledge them."
Wood, lecturing me about my manners? Had the man ever seen himself eat? Or, heard himself talk for that matter ...
"Yes, well, you are not a person, Wood, you are a parasite." I knew I was being unnecessarily defensive, but I was embarrassed, and I didn't want the big headed sod to think I fancy him.
Rationality: not big with me.
However, any indication of his thoughts were hidden away behind a mocking smile, and oddly glinting eyes.
"Have you ever wondered why you're single, West?" My eyes narrowed dangerously.
It's because I'm far too much woman for any of theses morons who call themselves men to handle. Obviously.
"Don't you have some plans for world domination to be cackling over? Or, cute fluffy animals to be torturing?" His smile widened, and I couldn't help the feeling that he was laughing at me.
"My point exactly." If you say so. "Look, I can't be bothered with you're obnoxious little arse today," he said dismissively, waving a hand flippantly.
"Who're you calling obnoxious, Lockhart?" Surprisingly, he ignored me.
"But we have fund-raising events to organise. So, I'm thinking we start tonight after practice, and try and get it out of the way as soon as possible. Less time I spend around you the better." The man had a point.
" I agree." Wood looked momentarily surprised at my concurrence, but seemed to recover quickly enough. The smirk was back. Well bugger.
"I might catch something off you." Cue eye roll. Very witty, Wood.
"You mean like a clue?" Woods eyebrow shot up.
"Oh, very good, West, insult me, that's mature." My own eyebrow rose to mirror his. Hypocrite.
"This coming from a person who still laughs when he hears the word boobies?" His lips twitched minutely, before immediately settling into a scowl. I smiled triumphantly. I do love being right.
"Oh sod off," he shot at me and I grinned. Your wish: my command.
"Gladly." And so, with a smug smile, I spun on my heel and stalked off, flicking the V over my shoulder as Wood called after me.
"Try not to be late for training tonight, Shit Trench."
West – 1, Wood – 0.
My feet pounded the ground. One after the other, progressively faster and faster until I was practically throwing myself around the next turn. Oxygen burned in my lungs, the cold air stung my skin, and adrenaline coursed through my body. I loved it.
As it was, I wasn't late for training at all. Actually, I was a half an hour early. After leaving the Prefect meeting I had headed straight to the tower, collected my stuff, and proceeded straight to the Quidditch pitch. And why had I done this?
So I could see the look on Wood's face when he realised he wasn't the first one there.
He probably considered it some kind of failure as Captain. First one on, last one off, and all that rubbish. Sometimes, the way he went on, it honestly felt like we were preparing for war.
Though, when you consider the bloodied mess in which I had left the pitch at the last game, anyone would think we were fighting a war.
A warm, satisfied feeling stole over me as I remembered the horrified look that had crossed Wood's face upon entering the changing room to find that, not only was I there before him, but I was already dressed for training, and he was still in his robes
"Eager much?"he had shot at me, slamming his locker open and glaring at everything in sight, picking something up and viciously throwing it to the back.
Yeah, because it's your cups fault that I'm just well better than you.
"Idiot much?" I shot back, striding past him, and smiling brilliantly. This, it would seem, annoyed him even more, because the wand he had just pulled out of his robes let go a flurry of golden sparks.
"Where are you going?" he called after me.
"Away from you." Smirk "Try not to miss me too much."
I chuckled to myself as I heard him scoff, muttering darkly to himself whilst throwing, and slamming things around.
Wood was clearly wound up.
My day had not been a complete waste after all.
Despite the fact that there was still some of it to go.
Famous. Last. Words.
"West." And there was the object of my arrant joy calling me over now.
To be honest, I really should have seen it all coming.
Had I really just thought that? Wood, the object of my arrant joy? Had hell just frozen over? Surely ...
And suddenly, I was flat our on my arse, in a bloody ocean of mud, having lost my footing on the wet grass.
Raucous laughter rang out behind me, and I recognised its deep tone immediately. Prick.
I twisted around to scowl at Wood, and was not disappointed to find him supporting himself on the door frame, (hopefully) killing himself laughing. I growled angrily, pushing myself up onto my feet, embarrassment setting an almighty blaze in my face.
Looking back up I was glad ( and, though I'll never admit it, grateful) to see that Wood had gone back inside, and with an embarrassed sigh I wiped my muddy hands on my bare legs, and set off towards the changing room.
My face was still letting off a radioactive glow, my backside was throbbing painfully, and my heart was beating a wild tattoo in my chest. This was simply not acceptable. There was only one thing for it: Wood had to die. And just to make sure, I'd do it with my own bare hands.
The smug-faced, obnoxious, egotistical, self-centred little shi-
Oh Merlin, I had gone deaf.
"Jesus, Wood! I'm right here," I ground out through gritted teeth.
Woods amused, honey coloured eyes locked onto me, and he sniggered as he observed my slight limp, and mud streaked legs. I glared menacingly.
You won't be laughing if I decide I'm in too much pain to ride my broom, Dungbrain.
But, the thought must also have occurred to Wood, because his face suddenly dropped, and he opened his mouth "Are you ..." No chance, Dicko.
"Sod off, Wood."
The wind speeds had picked up frighteningly, and I was struggling to keep any control over my broom, which seemed intent on being blown further and further away from the rest of the team. But, I was a strong flyer, I knew I'd be fine. I wasn't worried.
It was probably due to the fact that I was concentrating so hard on getting back to the rest of the team that I didn't realise just how far out I'd been blown.
It was only after Katie's terrified yell of "SEAN!" and the horrified look on her face as she pointed behind me that I looked over my shoulder, and I realised as I watched the branch swing towards me ...
I was furious.
No. No, actually I wasn't. I was beyond furious. I was ... I was ... I was ...
"AARRGGHHH," I screamed at a random group of third years. None of whom looked remotely disturbed by the fact that Stig of the Dump appeared to be storming past them, bearing her teeth in rage.
Could nothing go right today?
It was all his fault, ALL of it. Oliver Sodding Wood. He was the captain; he was responsible for all of us. He should have called off training when he'd seen that we were losing control of our brooms. He was more worried about winning the sodding cup than ... but hang on, rewind, it wasn't we at all, was it? It had only been me.
I was the only one who had lost control of their broom. Marvellous.
I left forth another howl of rage.
I realised what a deranged picture I made: covered from head to toe in mud, hair wild, and sticking up in every direction, blood coming from my nose, and various other cuts and scratches covering my body. A rather vivid purple bruise on my jaw had started to swell, and I was fairly sure that my lip was twice its usual size.
Safe to say that I was NOT SODDING HAPPY.
I stormed through the Portrait Hole, growling rabidly at any one who dared gasp or giggle at me. I stormed up to the Seventh year dormitory, slamming the door open with a resounding thwack, and began savagely grabbing at random pieces of clothing littering my bed, including a Falmouth Falcons sweatshirt lying at the foot of it.
Because, they were quite obviously to blame as well.
I whirled around ignoring the startled stares of Alicia and Katie, who had just entered the Dorm, flushed, sweating, and panting heavily, having obviously just chased my up there.
"Sean, what ... ?"
But, I was already flying back down the stairs again, eager to put as much space between myself, and people as possible.
Now, I'm not a very rational, or particularly observant person when I'm calm, never mind when I'm angry, and that's probably (more like definitely) the reason I never noticed the person stood at the foot of the stairs, that is, until I was back on my arse for the second time that day, rubbing a small lump on the top of my head.
Could this day get any worse? No, but, Seriously?
"Christ West, I knew you were hard-headed, but this just takes the piss."
Of course it could.
Wood was still alive.
Instantly, I was back on my feet, and dodging around Wood with a speed that (had I not been too incensed to notice, certainly would have) surprised even myself.
"Oi! West!" But, I was too enraged to listen, and was once again storming out of the portrait hole in what would surely have equated to a Gale Force Ten. Wood, the stubborn git, appeared to be in pursuit.
"West, come back here!" I scoffed loudly at the warning tone in Woods voice, and vaguely realised that I had never heard him say my name so many times in one day. I was sorely tempted to change it.
"Sean, will you just slow down ..," And, once again having used some form of superhuman speed, Wood had caught up with me, grabbing the back of my mud-caked robes, and literally pulling me to a halt.
"Let go of me, Wood," I raged, struggling against his iron-clad grip, not caring that everyone in the corridor had stopped to watch the scene unfold, most of them openly laughing at my deranged appearance.
"West, will you just stop-" Wood gritted out between his teeth, obviously struggling to keep a hold of me.
"No, I won't! Will you just FUCK OFF!" Snap. And, suddenly I was flying backwards, my back connecting with Woods chest as two of his burly arms encircled my waist, and lifted my thrashing body from off the floor far too easily. It would appear, that not only was Wood capable of Superhuman speed, but that he was also bloody Hercules as well.
And, then I was being forced through a door to our left, inside of which Wood dumped me onto the dusty floor of the abandoned classroom, and turned to lock the door with his want. He whirled back around to face me; eyes flashing dangerously "Now stay there and shut up until you've calmed the fuck down," Wood growled savagely.
For some reason, I obeyed.
I remained on the ground exactly where he had dropped me: clothes still clutched in my hand, positively seething, and staring at the floor, watching the dust shifting around from my heavy breathing. Wood remained behind me, silent, obviously wanting me to calm down before he decided to speak.
We stayed like that for a while: neither of us speaking, the only sound in the room that of our own breathing, and the faint tick of a clock. Finally, after what had felt like an eternity of staring at the floor in thoughtless rage, the blood had stopped rushing in my ears, my heartbeat had returned to a relatively normal speed and the violent shaking of my hands had lessened to a slight tremble. With a shuddering breath, I lifted myself from off the floor, and dusted myself down, throwing the clothes still clutched in my hands onto a nearby desk, and finally turning to look at Wood.
He was leaning against the door, still in his training clothes, arms crossed over his chest casually, and his hair considerably wind-swept. He was watching me through curiously dark eyes, though his face remained carefully blank, and I suddenly felt like a toddler being reprimanded for throwing a tantrum in public. Which, essentially, I just had. I averted my eyes from his rather piercing stare in embarrassment.
And, finally, Wood stood too, uncrossing his legs, and dropping his arms to his sides as he pushed away from the door.
"Finished throwing your toys out of your pram then?" he asked me, voice disapprovingly quiet. I felt a stab of annoyance at his patronising tone, but found I was suddenly too exhausted to muster any true anger, and so settled with shooting him a dirty look. Wood smirked, eyes glinting mockingly.
"That was really something, West. I've never actually seen anyone throw a tantrum quite like that. I mean, that was something my two year old nephew would be proud of," Wood informed me, and I felt my face heat with shame and anger at his words. It was all right for him, he hadn't just been humiliated in front of the whole sodding team. I opened my mouth to reply, but was cut off when he held up a hand to silence me and I glared at him indignantly when he continued to speak.
"I don't want to hear it, West. We all have bad days on the Pitch," he said, voice low, and serious, eyebrows drawn into a disapproving frown, and my expression changed into one of incredulity. A bad day? Was he joking? It had been a bloody catastrophe! "But, none of us go rampaging around the school like a nesting dragon," he chastised me.
"Yeah, well, none of you lost control of your bloody brooms, and ended up getting ripped a new arsehole by a fucking tree, did you?" I snapped. His eyebrows rose challengingly.
"What do you expect when you're still riding a sodding Cleansweep Three? Look, Sean," he cut me off when he saw me open my mouth in outrage. "None of us is questioning your ability to ride a broom," he told me, voice placating. I scoffed, crossing my arms across my chest, and glaring. "Really, we've all seen you fly, and we all know you're bloody good, and I know that any of us would have lost control over a Cleansweep Three in those kind of winds. It's not exactly the most stable of brooms, is it?" I continued to glare at him, refusing to answer, but I knew he was right. "But, that's still no excuse." And, that's when I knew it was coming. The talk.
Wood's I'm-The-Captain-And-Therefore-Overall-Supreme-Ruler-Of-The-Universe-Voice was about to make an appearance. I suddenly wished I was back in the prefect meeting, watching Percy's slide show again.
"Now, I know you're embarrassed." And suddenly his voice was louder, and his expression had turned hard and disapproving. "But, I will NOT tolerate team members acting in the way you did tonight. The way you treated the rest of the team was beyond unacceptable." He paused momentarily, taking in the mutinous expression on my face (and also for dramatic effect, because he's a ponce). "We are supposed to work together, and TRUST one another. Not scream at everyone when they try to help you. I do not need a petulant little girl on the team who's going to take her embarrassment out on the rest of us whenever she has an accident, or makes a mistake," he finished, tone almost threatening.
I was gaping at him in a rather undignified, disgusted manner, completely shocked at what had just come out of his mouth. There was no possible way ... he wouldn't dare, he couldn't afford to ... "Are you kicking me off the team?" Wood merely shrugged his shoulders, and spread his hands out in front of him. Panic began to flow through my body.
"Unless you pull your act together," he replied. "I will replace you if I have to, West. I'm sick of your tantrums and complete disregard for anyone else on the team. You've gotten away with far too much for far too long. It's about time you fucking grew up." And with that he spun around, unlocked the door and left, leaving me to stare after him in complete scandal.
For the first time ever, I was completely speechless.
And, Wood, had apparently just put the ball firmly in my court.