snowdrifts and cold days
Snow falls like powder on the green fir trees that surround the looming stone building that is Hogwarts. Inside, by the cosy light that is the Gryffindor fire, sit two sort-of friends.
"It's cold," Molly Weasley, the redheaded girl, comments aloud.
"Thanks for announcing it," Lysander Scamander, the brunette boy, replies. "I never would have guessed."
"Shut up," Molly tries to sound harsh, but ends up failing miserably. "Did you get your OWL results?"
"Yeah," Lysander glances down at the ashes that are burning in the fire. The ashes remind him of his future, crashing and burning before his eyes. "Three OWLs- about as much as I'd expected, anyway. You?" The boy pretends not to know the answer he's going to receive.
"Ten," Molly scowls. "I was a bit disappointed, of course- twelve's the maximum, and I didn't get close-"
"Wait a second," Lysander holds up his hand, indicating he has to figure something out. Confused, he scrunches up his lip in that way Molly notices he always does. Not that she notices that much about them, because, of course, they're barely even friends. "You got ten OWLs and you're disappointed?"
"Yep," Molly pops the 'P', just because it's fun. "Why are you inside, anyway? Your friends and that girl that you fancy are out there."
Sighing, Lysander lays himself back against the couch. His blue eyes meet hers. "That's exactly why I can't."
"Because she's out there?" Molly wrinkles up her nose. Suddenly, Lysander notices the grand contradiction of her copper-coloured freckles, blue-green eyes, and red-and-gold Gryffindor scarf. She's just a whirlwind of colour and attempted perfection, she is. Quietly, she continues, "But doesn't that give you a reason to go out there?"
"No," Lysander glances at the ground, keeping his eyes trained off of her. "I'm trying to get over her."
"Why? What's her name?" Molly stares eagerly at him. He knows as well as she that Molly Weasley has a thirst for new information, just like her father, and also like her father is naive enough to believe anything that she's told. But he doesn't lie this time.
"Aquarius Flint," Lysander mutters. At first, he hopes she doesn't hear him- he's a bit ashamed, y'see.
However, Molly's eyes widen in surprise. Everyone's do, at first, because he's a Gryffindor, she's a Slytherin and it won't work. But he knows, just as she does, that Aquarius Flint declares herself the 'least mean' of all the Slytherin girls, and regularly hangs out with Ravenclaws, Hufflepuffs, and sometimes even Gryffindors. Too bad she's still got that Slytherin core when you get down to it. Finally, Molly says something. "She's going out with Albus."
This is another problem, he admits. But he has to also admit that he fancied Aquarius before Albus, he just didn't admit it until they were already going out. Groaning, he tells her, "Don't remind me."
"Fine," Molly appears to be thinking. Suddenly, her eyes light up. "I've got it!"
"If it involves dressing me up in an animal suit, I don't want to hear it," Lysander informs her.
Obviously confused, Molly raises an eyebrow. "It doesn't."
"Then what is it?" Lysander prods, not wanting to talk about his experiences with animal suits. He'd much rather hear her plan that would help him to forget Aquarius.
She grins over at him. "First, let's go outside-"
"What?" Lysander cuts in. "You want me to go outside, where she is?"
"No," Molly replies, shooting him a look that implies he's crazy. Her glare indicates to him that he should wait until she's done talking. "I want you to go outside, with me. We don't have to go anywhere near Lorcan, Lucy, Dominique, Aquarius, Lily, and Albus."
"All right," Lysander sighs. Peering out the window, he stares at the blanket of snow that coats all the trees. His eyes meet Aquarius' form, bent over to scoop up some snow. Her brown hair frames her face like a brown halo, at least until she pops up and lugs a huge snowball into Dominique's part-Veela face. Angrily, the blonde fires one back, and the two stubborn sixth-years get involved in a battle. Frowning, he looks back up at Molly. "How will we get past them?"
"I asked James to borrow this a while ago." Smirking, from behind her back Molly pulls out the famed Invisibility Cloak. Lysander gasps and trails the soft fabric through his hands. "Actually, I was interested in its physical properties, I've never heard of anything quite like this. But I suppose it will come in handy today."
"It sure will," Lysander beams. "Fine, I've done enough brooding for today. Let's go distract ourselves, shall we, Molly?"
"We shall," Molly replies. Slowly, she spreads out the Invisibility Cloak and spreads it over herself and Lysander. Lysander turns his head to look at her, and is surprised (but not entirely) when he can't see her. Glancing down at his hand, he realises it's not there either.
"Wow," he breathes. Grinning, he exclaims, "Let's go!"
She laughs out loud at his childish excitement, which somehow she shares. No sort of Muggle science (or even Wizarding classes, at that) could explain the phenomenon known as the Invisibility Cloak. They walk quickly down the stairs, and she tries to ignore the feeling of his arm brushing hers. For some reason, his tanned skin is incredibly warm, almost as if it's on fire.
As they walk by Lorcan, Lucy, Dominique, Aquarius, Albus, and Lily, Lysander winces under the cloak. He's grateful that Molly can't see his reaction. He's doubly grateful that he doesn't have to face Aquarius.
Sometime after that, Molly takes his hand and leads him up a snowy hill. Behind them, two pairs of footprints in the snow trace their path, but do not seem to be created by anything. Magical animals glance in confusion at these strange creatures.
Once they are at the very top, Molly removes the Invisibility Cloak from her body and Lysander's. "This is my favourite place, and I'll admit, it's even better covered in snow."
"It's beautiful, Molly," he tells her. Even for a supposed prankster with no feelings, he has to admit that the hill, with its snow-topped trees and berry-bearing bushes (though the berries will probably die soon), is beautiful. A smile appears on his face. He can already feel himself starting to forget about Aquarius.
"Have you ever gone sledding?" She asks him, wringing her hands nervously. After all, sledding is such a Muggle pastime, and he might ridicule her for even asking. That is, if he's like most other blokes.
His brow creases in confusion. Though Luna and Rolf Scamander aren't biased against Muggles at are, they'd much preferred to live in their world of Nargles, therefore never having much time for Muggle things like sledding. "What's sledding?"
"It's a Muggle thing," she mutters, face turning bright red. For some strange reason, he finds it attractive. Still red, she asks, "Do you mind?"
"Not at all," He grins at her. "How do you do it?"
Molly demonstrates, showing him the rubbish bin lid she'd nicked from a deserted Muggle street. Then, to Lysander's intense surprise, she sits down it and it travels down the hill, picking up speed as it goes. Once she reaches the bottom, she hops off and drags it back up to the top.
"Can't you just use magic to help you get down there?" Lysander asks her quietly.
"Lysander," She replies, eyes burning with an obvious passion. He can't understand the passion, but finds it endearing nonetheless. She just wants him to give it a try. "Haven't you ever wanted to try anything without magic?"
"Fine," Lysander agrees. Slowly, he plants himself on the rubbish bin lid and sits there. Rolling her eyes, Molly stalks up behind him and gives him a gentle push. He's off.
The wind he's going against blows his light brown hair back. Adrenaline pumps through his veins as he struggles to remind himself that he's not going to hit anything. Thrill keeps him wanting to go just-a-little-bit faster, but he's scared that if he does he'll hit the freezing cold lake. Suddenly, all-too-fast the ride is over, and he's sitting on a sled on the snow again.
"How was that?" Molly calls down to him, a confident smirk on her face. She knows that Lysander, the Gryffindor risk-taker, will love it.
"Wonderful!" he calls, bounding up the hill, sled in hand. Grinning, he plants a kiss on her cheek. "You're amazing, Molly Weasley. Got any other Muggle pastimes?"
Next, she shows him how to make a snow angel. Hers looks perfect, just as he'd expected and she'd wanted. His is a little rough around the edges. Molly, the thinker, can't help but notice that it's a reflection of their personalities- even more so when Lysander accidentally kicks a pile of snow on to hers. (He can't stand perfection, she knows. Only if he knew she wasn't perfect at all.)
Then, he tells her of hearing stories about a man made out of snow. Giggling, Molly tucks a piece of red hair behind her ear and makes a small snowball out of snow.
"This is a man made out of snow?" Lysander inquires dubiously.
"No," She frowns. "Watch."
She then proceeds to roll the snow around, making a humongous snowball. Afterwards, she commands Lysander to make one that is medium-sized, not bigger than the first but not too small. She commences on making one that is just right for the head. Together, they stack them up, largest to smallest.
"Terrific," Molly compliments their snowman. "He looks as if he could come to life at any moment! Now, he needs a face."
Lysander goes scouring around for more berries, while Molly breaks off perfectly styled sticks to use as arms. From her Expandable Bag, Molly produces a carrot, which she sticks on as the nose. Lysander returns with the berries and adds eyes and a nose. Then, he removes his own Chudley Cannons hat from his pocket (he'd cast an Expanding Charm on it and put it in there when he was sledding) and places it on the snowman's head.
"There," His face lights up. "Now it's perfect."
Afterward, they end up lying side by side in the snow. Somehow, they get on the subject of futures.
Molly rolls on her side. "What are you interested in?"
"I don't know," Lysander replies thoughtfully. "I love pranking and fun stuff like that, but I'm hopeless in school."
"You could always go work with my uncle, George is eager for new recruits," Molly offers. "Or Zonko's, but that would be a bit of a betrayal to my entire family."
"That's true," Lysander bites back a laugh. He sees the happiness on her face. "But I don't know if that would be much of a future, that's what my dad is always saying, at least."
Glumly, Molly glares up at the sky. "I know what you mean. Dad's thrilled that I've got good marks at school, but he doesn't approve of my interest in Muggles. Of course, he's got nothing against them- just thinks I've been 'blessed with these powers' and I should 'use them to the best of my ability'."
"Yeah, Mum reckons I should go off on searches for Crumple-Horned Snorkacks, but I'm not much for that," Lysander sighs, staring up at the wide, vast sky. It always reminds him of the world beyond Hogwarts. "Lorcan's more of the nature type. You know, sometimes I despise how we're always expected to live up to our parents."
"Sometimes, when people hear that I'm Percy Weasley's daughter, they expect me to be a bit of a prat," Molly confesses, giggling. "But at least my mother has a fairly good reputation."
"I don't want to be a nature person," Lysander tells her.
She props up on one elbow. "I don't want to be a Ministry Prat."
Rolling back over, they both lay there in complete silence, considering their futures.
"Forgotten about Aquarius yet?" Molly inquires.
"Who is she?" Lysander teases. They laugh, and then are thrown back into the comfortable silence again.
Sometime during that silence, his hand finds hers, and slides around it. He pulls her a bit closer to him and soon she's lying on his chest.
It's a lot warmer there.
A/N: Well, that was for you, ListenAndBelieve, for the Write Me a Story! Challenge on the NextGen fanatics forum. I hope you enjoy, I enjoyed writing it, though it's not that great.
Please review, everyone else, and I hope you enjoyed it too!
And by the way, I've just posted two new fics and have no reviews. If you could check them out, that would be great!