Of Lilies, Stags, Dogs and Roses

Chapter 4 – The Prank's Sabotage

September 4th 1973

9:30 am

Just so typical really, only the fourth day back at school yet Bella's cousin and his crew were already up to something stupid. As Bella and I walked past the Griffindor table we heard them cheering, moronically clinking their orange-juice filled glasses to 'Frankie and Alice'. I have to admit, it was pretty common knowledge that the Gryffindor prefect Frank Longbottom was head over heels for that little measly Alice Cullen, but had those Mauraders actually managed to set them up at long last? Whatever would they do next?

"Did you hear that Bells?" I asked as I took my seat amongst the extravagant breakfast banquet on the Slytherin table.

Bellatrix nodded solemnly, taking a piece of grapefruit in her hand.

"Sure did Rach." Bella said, "Those sickening marauders are so good at pranking I shall give them that one; but why they waste their talents on such nauseating nonsense I shall never know."

I nodded in agreement. Then, a thought struck me; it was a thought that came as sudden and explosive as a bolt of lightning.

"Well, the mauraders are not the only ones who can prank Bells." I grinned. "Shall we, urm … put an end to the 'nauseating nonsense'?"

There was something hidden within my angelic song-songish welsh accent that made the slightly sinister lines like those sound all the more chilling, all the more thrilling; and, oh, how I love that effect.

Bella's playful grin was now echoing the one that was sprawled happily across my own face … how great it is to have a friend on the exact same wavelength as yourself. As thick as thieves Bella and I are, like sisters without the unfortunate genetics that go along with it. I wouldn't be without her. Our minds think as one most of the time, our thoughts of magical purity being the main thing that we have in common. Mudbloods – the foul loathsome things; should at the very least be made to live as muggles, unable to use the magic that they 'stole'. Blood-traitors are just as bad in my opinion – it makes me sick to think that you could even consider getting so friendly with such dirty blood. Alright – there's a weird little leak in my heart when it comes to that point; there is one muggle-lover that has craftily made it through. Would you believe me if I told you that it was Bella's cousin? That it's the only member of the house of Black that has been dishonoured and cast aside? A Griffindor of all things?! Yes, you guessed it; it's the handsome, amazing, pure-blooded Sirius Black. Oh, I know its treachery of the worst kind – I certainly would never go there! I'd never do that to Bella, hell I couldn't even tell her how I feel right now. And the idea of disgracing my family in such a way, that makes me sick to the core. It's just a crush, just an infatuation over his irresistible good looks – that muggle-lover will worm his way back out eventually, despite how long he's lasted there already.

Bella and I planned to sabotage Sirius and Co's plan as soon as possible; but it wasn't until right after Herbology, during our lunch hour; that we saw the two of them together for the first time. Frank Longbottom and Alice Cullen – the true sight of vomit-inducing romance as they walked through the pumpkin patch hand in hand.

"Follow them?" I whispered.

With a nod Bella walked toward them, nonchalantly talking to me as we walked. We kept such a distance behind the 'happy' couple that no one would suspect a thing.

After half an hour of discreetly following them, taking different routes here and there, and getting lost in crowds quite often; we finally got a chance. Just in time too, since the time to head to Charms class was almost upon us. We were still a good few paces behind, so we weren't sure which of the locked stalls Alice was behind once we'd entered the bathroom, but that didn't matter.

"You heard about Longbottom?" I chorused, slightly louder than my usual tone of voice.

Bella carefully hid back her urge to giggle and she casually responded with a 'No'. I pulled my make-up out of my bag, it needed reapplying, and well; I had to look like I was in the bathroom for some sort of purpose.

"Really? Thought the whole school knew by now." I sweeped the eyeliner under my lid expertly, with one solid motion. "He and Potter and the gang have pulled the cruellest joke on Alice Cullen. You know, that little Gryffindor in the year below us?"

Bella 'ummed' and 'ahhed' and enquired in all the right places. This devious plan of ours was much easier than I first thought it would be.

"Yeah," I continued, applying my mascara by now. "they found out that Alice likes Longbottom, so they were going to pretend that Longbottom likes her back. Apparently they're going to tell her it was all a joke in a day or two."

Bella started to act all innocent, all concerned and pitiful for Alice. Then, now that my make-up was fully reapplied; we walked back out the door as if nothing had happened at all.

Outside the bathroom we saw Longbottom, leaning against the wall, whistling; waiting for Alice. Bella and I swerved round the corner and waited until the moment the cheerful whistles stopped. As soon as we heard Alice fly out of the bathroom door we knew that moment had arrived.

"AVIS!" She yelled. "OPPUGNO!"

The tiny flock of yellow birds that she had conjured from mid-air went flying toward Longbottom. He yelled with both fright and shock and started running down the corridor; the birds flying right by his side, chasing him and attacking him with all the strength those little creatures had in them.

"NOW SEE IF THAT DOESN'T TEACH YOU A LESSON!" She yelled after him.

Alice ran off in the opposite direction, her sobs already sounding totally uncontrollable.

Bella and I glanced at each other then burst out into hysterical laughter. Yes; us two Slytherin girls are no match for any stinking marauder!

"Prank one of the year perfectly sabotaged?" Bella giggled sarcastically, knowing that she sounded exactly like one of those pathetic marauders.

We hadn't even properly finished laughing when Frank came walking back in the opposite direction, this time unfortunately no birds were present; but both Sirius and Potter were in tow.

"Go after her mate!" I heard Sirius coax.

Frank kept on saying that he hadn't done a thing, stupidly repeating himself like a broken record.

"Come on then Frankie! Let's go tell her that then! She's probably in the common room. Come on!" The idea of the 'prank' falling apart before them was too much for Potter's tiny little brain to handle.

Bella nudged her head toward the direction they had walked. We followed once more. Oh little Alice won't give Longbottom the time of day after what she heard us talking about. Whatever little pathetic crush she had is long gone by now. But, it would be fun to see his reaction, even if it did mean tiny little Flitwick bouncing on his pile of books as he told us we were late.

As we followed the motley crew down the corridor that I knew the Griffindor common room was in, I feared we'd lose them behind the portrait of that fat ugly witch. Luck, however; decided to grant us with her ever so gracious presence. Alice and her mudblood-chum Lily Evans stumbled out of the portrait, probably to head to lessons.

"Alice!" Longbottom called.

The two girls kept on walking. Bella and I paused just close enough to hear them, completely out of sight behind some suits of armour. Longbottom called out to her again.

"She doesn't want to talk Longbottom!" Lily barked back at him. "Pretending to like her! It's pathetic! That's almost stooping as low as a Slytherin!"

With that the two girls had walked quickly out of earshot, arm-in-arm looking ridiculously as if they thought that no boy could harm them if they stayed together.

"But…" I just about heard Frank whisper, almost in tears. "I didn't pretend!"

The baffled looks on all the boys faces could easily have sent us into hysterics again, but the laughter waited until we were almost at Charms. Sure we were late, sure we were told off … but we weren't late enough to warrant a detention like I knew Frank would be. The fifth-year Griffindors had potions with Slughorn, down in the dungeons, almost at the other side of the castle. Sometimes being as cunning as a Slytherin ought to be; has such a sickening satisfaction.