Disclaimer: Don't own anything from Harry Potter or Kingdom Hearts. Alas, woe is me!
I really, honestly didn't think this would be as popular as it apparently is, but you guys proved me wrong. XD Anyway, thanks for your support, everyone. Coming up with the next chapter was fun and I hope you enjoy it.
I don't plan on this being a major project, since I'm preoccupied with writing Memories of the Broken. (Still need a beta for that, in fact. –hinthintnudgenudge-) Still, it will get fun little chapters every once in a while. I have a few ideas that should keep me going.
Now, without further ado, here's the second chapter.
The eccentricity of the Hogwart's staff was often what made them great. After all, it was reasoned, students didn't want some boring teacher. They'd just lose interest in their lessons and become a worse wizard or witch for it. Anyway... In the wizarding world, 'eccentric' was almost mandatory. Actually, 'eccentric' was the best of it! After all, certain wizards who won't be mentioned used to do rather inappropriate charms on goats. None of Headmaster Ansem Wise's staff did such things!
....At least, that he knew of.
Still, despite all their eccentricities, they were all good people. That, Ansem was sure of. He wouldn't have them any other way, to be honest.
Of course, that opinion only lasted until one of his dear professors came in ranting and raving. And it was always the same professor.
"-and not a day goes by that he doesn't make some sort of snide comment to me! He's the most arrogant example of a wizard I've ever met! In my personal opinion, he should be expelled-!"
Ansem holds up his hand, gathering every inch of patience he possesses. "Vexen," he says gently, staring at the disgruntled Potions professor. "I can understand your frustration concerning young Marluxia Macmillan. However, from what I've heard, you're somewhat... extreme in your punishment of him." Vexen just gives him a blank look, and Ansem must explain further. "You took 20 points away from Slytherin because he blinked."
Immediately, Vexen flushes at being caught. Huffily, he crosses his arms and looks away, still brilliantly red. "It was a very insolent blink," he mutters.
Ansem almost laughs at the sight. Somehow, he manages to keep his voice as calm as always. "I've returned the points to his house, and I simply request that you do your best to ignore his... arrogance. You are a professor of Hogwarts and head of Ravenclaw. You are better then such petty things." By now, he's risen from his desk and walked over to the still flushing professor. As he lays a hand on Vexen's shoulder, he asks, "Now, can I trust you to keep your cool around him?"
Vexen gives a sigh. "I suppose I have no choice," he mutters, and gives a jerk of a nod. At Ansem's laugh, he looks up, curious.
"You could always quit," Ansem points out as he escorts his longtime friend to the door. Vexen looks properly scandalized.
"He'd win, then!" Vexen exclaims, enraged and flustered again. Suddenly, he seems to realize something and places his fist to his mouth. "Hm, but I suppose if I stay on... Ignore his ridiculous attempts... That would be a point in my favor, wouldn't it?"
"It would," Ansem agrees as Vexen leaves the office. "Now, I'll see you at supper." When he finally closes the door, he can't help but lay his forehead against it. Oh boy....
Behind him, a small wardrobe gave a small rock before one of its doors opened. Shaking his head and blinking, Luxord steps out. "Uncle, I hope you realize that they'll just start this whole bloody thing all over again next year." He pauses, and adds, "If we're lucky."
"I know, I know," Ansem groans, one hand passing over his face as he began to walk back to his desk. "What was it that happened last year?"
Somberly, Luxord replied, "Professor Malfoy dyed Marluxia's hair pink."
There's a small moment of silence between the two of them before the room is suddenly filled with laughter.
"Mad," a painting grumbles, glowering at the laughing. "Positively out of their minds."
The portrait next to it only chuckles good-naturedly, its blue eyes twinkling. "Come now, Phineas. There is no harm in laughter, only good."
'Phineas' gives a sniff, even as Ansem and Luxord's laughter slows to chuckles. "Perhaps," he admits sulkily. "But they're still insane."
Ignore Marluxia? Easier said then done, Vexen thought with a frown as he walked through the halls and back to his classroom. Still... Well, some one had to be better then that arrogant little rat! That's right. He was better; he was definitely better-
"Oi, Vexy! What's on your mind?"
Excitement and pride drained out of Vexen to be replaced by minor annoyance, and he sighed before turning to the speaker. A very short man with bright red-orange hair stood before him, grinning widely. His chin was in severe need of a shave, and freckles were splattered all across his face, although mostly on his nose. In the opinions of the students, he either looked like some small mammal or like he had a perpetual cold, minus the mucus.
He wasn't one of Vexen's favorite people, but the Potions master could still deal with him... On a good day. Vexen's gaze turned positively arctic as he said bitterly, "Don't call me by that nickname, Timon. Honestly... Don't you have a gnome infestation to take care of?"
Timon just laughed and smacked him on his back, causing the blond to stumble forward with a small yelp. "Oh, relax. Fine, I'll be all polite." The gaze in his eyes turn mocking as he says, "Professor Malfoy, what doth trouble thou royal, stick-up-thy-rear self? Eh?"
The answer only receives an even icier glare then before, although Vexen finally relents. "It's Marluxia again," he grumbles, crossing his arms.
Timon promptly turns delighted. "Heh, hey, I remember that kid! Didn't you dye his hair pink?" An almost evil looking smirk spreads across Vexen's face, which causes Timon to give a loud guffaw. "Hoo boy, I don't think I've ever seen anyone that pissed! Yeah, I know that friend of his, Luxord. Plays a mean game of Hearts and his girlfriend is vicious as they come." He gives an impressed whistle just thinking about it before he runs a hand through his mess of hair. "Anyway, I wouldn't worry about the kid, Vex."
"I told you to stop-!"
"I mean, kids like him," Timon continues, ignoring Vexen's interruption, "it's just the way they are, am I right?" Shaking his head, he leans against the wall, next to an open window. "Makes me glad I'm just the groundskeeper. Anyway, like I was sayin', it's just how that kinda kid is, alright? The day a kid like that changes is the day pigs learn to play Quidditch."
Suddenly, a dark blur speeds through the open windows not two seconds after Timon has given his little speech. The two men stare at the chubby figure that's suddenly crashed into their midst. The man is somewhat tall, with something of a belly. Perhaps his most notable feature is the insane mess of hair on his head, an inane mixture of wild curls and messy dreadlocks. The black man pulls his broomstick up, and grins at them. "Heya there, Timon, Vex!" he calls cheerfully, waving with one tightly closed fist.
Timon turns to Vexen for a moment and jerks a thumb in the broomstick rider's direction. "An' Pumba doesn't count." Shaking his head, he hops over to his best friend. "Oi, Pumba! Aren't you supposed to be teaching the newbies about flyin'?"
"Yup!" Pumba grins as he lazily guides his broomstick over to the two. "We're learnin' about Quidditch right now! Figured I'd show them our ole Zazu, first." He holds out his fisted hand and slowly relaxes his fingers. In a snap, a Golden Snitch bursts out from its prison. It darts around their heads for a brief second before making a mad dash for the outside. Its escape attempt is halted, however, when Pumba's large dark hand encloses around it again. "Just about to head out again."
"Good, you can give me a lift," Timon says with a grin and hops on before there's any argument. "Tifa asked me to help her with some shipments, so just drop me by her place." Vexen can't believe that the tiny little broomstick can hold both Timon and Pumba's weight, but it somehow seems to hold up perfectly fine. The two friends give a cheerful wave to the Potions professor before they zoom right out the window. Vexen shakes his head at the sight before he continues his trek all the way down to the dungeons.
There's some one waiting for him when he arrives, however, even though no students are to arrive for another five minutes. A young woman with light brown hair and a pale blue robe is waiting for him outside his door and smiles brightly when she sees him. "Hello, Vexen," she greets, and practically barrels into his arms. "How'd your talk with Ansem go?"
The sight of her always manages to relax him, and Vexen smiles at her for a moment before the memory of Marluxia promptly spoils everything. With a grumble, he pecks her on the corner of her mouth before he opens the door to the dungeons, where his classroom awaits. "Oh, as well as can be expected, Ella." Their arms loop together as he leads her down the steps. "I still have to deal with that little menace."
"Relax," she coos, and kisses him on the cheek. "I'm sure things will get better. After all, you have students you like, right? You talked about Zexion Kobayashi and Lexaeus Bête, didn't you?"
Vexen cheers up at this and nods. "That's right. They're amazingly intelligent, it's a shame that they didn't get into my house. Lord knows they would have been more then welcome. Now then..." He smirks at her. "'Professor Cinderwish', don't you have work you should be doing or sleep you should be using?"
She laughs and skips back, her hands held up innocently. "Already done," she beams. "I am from Hufflepuff, you know. 'Unafraid of toil', remember?" Ella folds her hands behind her back and twirls back to the stairs, humming a waltz under her breath. "Still, I should get some sleep. After all, I need to go to my class at midnight, and such." She gives a wiggle of her fingers at him, smiling lovingly. "Bye, Vexen." As he waves farewell too, she walks back up the stairs, still humming that silly little song of hers.
Unfortunately, it gets in his head. Fortunately, it keeps him in a good enough mood throughout the rest of his classes...
At least until Yuffie Kisaragi, a fourth year Hufflepuff, blows up half the classroom and sends three other students to the Hospital Wing. As soon as the rest of the class clears out, Vexen takes a look at the soot covered classroom in dismay before practically slamming his head against his desk.
Merlin's Beard, why did I take this job?