Disclaimer: All of J.K.R.'s characters belong to her, no matter how much I wish they were my own.
This will be a multi-chaptered story, centering on Frank and Alice's relationship. It will contain little drabbles and memories as well as longer, plot-driven parts. That's all the information you're getting right now. Read!
Worth Fighting For
Chapter One: A Trolley Encounter
She remembered it. The name.
Droobles, capitals printed on the blue wrapper.
Droobles Best Blowing Gum, it said, in neon pink lettering.
She couldn't remember why it was important though. It just was. And she needed to save the wrappers.
She needed to.
She needed to.
It just was.
The first time he saw her was on the train.
He was racing through the compartments to the food trolley- sweets were pretty much the most important thing on the Hogwarts Express, at least to a twelve-year-old boy. He reached the cart where the young, curvaceous witch stood, dolling out change to the crowd of children eagerly awaiting the candies.
Easily wading through the mob because of his height, Frank soon reached the overfilling trolley. Grabbing several Pumpkin Pasties, a few Fizzing Whizbees, a couple of sugar quills, and about two-dozen Chocolate Frogs, he caught sight of the glass jar of Droobles gum.
Now, Frank was a smart, logical boy. He quickly did the math in his head. Never-ending flavor plus giant cobalt blue bubbles divided by two Sickles per piece of gum equaled totally and completely worth it.
As he dove his hand hurriedly into the jar, he accidentally pushed a little girl aside. Turning towards her, his fists stuffed with the pieces, he noticed the glum look on her open face as she saw the now almost empty jar. Feeling an immediate wave of shame, he offered his hand to her.
Gazing at him with large brown eyes, her mouth opened in an unasked question.
"Sorry," Frank muttered gruffly, aware of her eyes on his face as he scuffled his feet on the carpet. "Here. Do you want some of mine?"
After another moment of staring, the girl allowed a small, innocent smile to tug at her mouth. Shyly, she reached her little fingers up and grabbed two pieces. Frank felt much better, even with two pieces of gum gone.
"Thanks," she replied, her voice like lemon meringue (He didn't know why he thought that, but he just did. She also smelled like his mother's cherry pie).
Then emboldened by her action, she asked, "What's your name?"
"Frank Longbottom. I'm a second year Gryffindor," he declared proudly. "You?"
The girl looked slightly confused, her brows wrinkled.
"What House are you in?" Frank asked, slower this time.
"I'm new. This is my first year," she answered faintly
"Oh! You're new! That explains why I haven't seen you around before."
The girl simply looked at him. He didn't quite know what to make of it.
"Well, you'd better hope you don't get put in Slytherin. They do awful things to the new students." The girl gasped, gullible and horrified.
Feeling slightly cross at his thoughtlessness again, he quickly added, "Don't worry. I'm sure you won't get put in Slytherin- you're far too nice."
She hesitated as if testing his honesty, then smiled a little, a small giggle escaping her lips.
"How do you get chosen?" was her next quiet question. Frank debated in his mind- should he tell her the truth or make something up?
"Well, it's not scary. Don't worry, you'll be fine. But between you and me-" Here he leaned close, as if to tell her a secret- "you'd do your best to get placed in Gryffindor. We're the best."
With that, he handed the patient witch his bulging pouch of coins and sauntered off. The odd feeling in his stomach made him forget all about his change from the sweets trolley. And it wasn't until much later, when his innards had finished twisting knots, that he realized he hadn't asked the girl her name.
"Alice!" Frank called across the courtyard. "How'd your test go?"
Excusing herself from her chatty companions, the small dark haired girl hurried across the expanse to where Frank sat with a group of his rowdy friends.
"It went fine, Frank. I think I lost a couple of points when Professor Flitwick asked me to perform a Cheering Charm on a hamster and instead of making it squeak it sprouted another leg…"
Frank tried to hide his amusement by hiccuping vigorously.
Alice continued, ignoring him. "Other than that it went quite well. I performed an excellent Hovering Charm on a china cup for extra credit."
Sirius swung down from his perch on the oak tree, robes unfastened and hair windblown.
"Look, Longbottom's got a girlfriend!"
Frank blushed crimson from head to toe as the other three fourth year Marauders turned to gape.
James jeered, "Awww, how sweet! Alice and Frank, sitting in a tree, K-I-S-S-I-N-"
Frank was about to whip out his wand and hex the little weasel to the Forbidden Forest, but Alice was quicker.
With an expert flick of her wand, James flew off the tree branch and started cartwheeling haphazardly around the courtyard, robes whipping in every direction.
Frank and his friends watched in fascinated horror as Alice directed the acrobatic James toward a group of fourth year girls huddled on a bench.
With a nauseating thump, James Potter was unceremoniously hurled onto the grass by their feet.
When he peered up the line of sock-clad slender legs, he recognized a familiar star-shaped scar on one of the girl's lower thighs.
"Hey there, Evans," he managed to gasp out pompously. "Bet you I-"
And with that, James abruptly vomited his lunch on their loafers.
Frank turned away from the commotion and gazed at Alice, who was smoothly pocketing her wand, flattening an errant wisp of black hair that had escaped from her braid.
He found that words were quite impossible, so merely reached into his pocket and offered her a piece of Droobles gum, as was their custom every time they paused for a talk in the hallway.
Smiling, she took it, nodded once, and strode off.
He watched her until she had left the courtyard with her amused friends, talking loudly.
Shaking his head and grinning to himself, Frank returned to his Transfiguration homework laid out on the bench, but his mind was still stuck on Alice.
Frank finished knotting his tie for the thirty-second time that night.
Remus bumped past him on the way to the loo to brush his teeth.
"Come off it, Longbottom," he chuckled. "Anything more and you'll miss the damn dance!"
Sirius swiveled from his crouch next to James' nightstand mirror where he was diligently combing his hair next to James.
"Yeah, mate. Alice probably won't even notice how god-awful your tie looks when she's too busy staring into your dreamy sapphire eyes!"
Frank gave an indignant yell, leaped fluidly over Peter's bed- swiping his pillow in the process-and began to mercilessly beat the other boy over the head with it.
Sirius bravely defended his flawless coiffure, managing to wrestle the pillow from Frank's grasp.
"Hey! Don't mess with the hair, mate, or you'll be sorry!"
Sirius glared at Frank, his eyes narrowed menacingly and wand pointed at his nose.
Frank glowered back, staring down at Sirius because of his height.
Peter, Remus, and James just chortled in the background.
Eventually, Frank had to crack a tiny grin.
Sirius couldn't hold his laughter in any longer, and soon both were chuckling and pounding each other on the back with manly grunts, purposely ignoring the fact that just moments ago they had been prancing around their dormitory like non-athletic pixies.
The quintet gamboled down the stairs from the top of the tower (they got the highest and largest dormitory because they were seventh years, and fondly referred to it as 'The Prerogative Penthouse'). Three exquisitely dressed girls met them at the bottom of the steps, all looking extremely exasperated.
"You're late," was the first thing out of Lily's mouth. She was tapping her foot impatiently on the floor, one of her red brows arched, irritated. Frank looked her up and down, and even though she wasn't his date he had to admit that she looked stunning. James simply gurgled unintelligibly, obviously agreeing with Frank's opinion.
Remus and Peter pushed past the girls, smiling at their friend's reaction.
"We're off to get our dates," Remus called as they exited the portrait hole. Remus' girlfriend was a Ravenclaw, and Peter had somehow pulled enough courage together to ask a Hufflepuff.
"Have fun, guys," muttered Mia, scowling at a corner of the common room where an umbrella stand was placed. She seemed intent on breaking it in half with her stare.
Sirius seemed to think that this current state of displeasure was because of the lack of his presence by her side.
Sauntering over to his gorgeous but irritable date, he draped a suave arm over her shoulders.
"Hi there, sexy."
Frank rolled his eyes. Sirius, the official Casanova of Hogwarts, captured ladies' hearts by calling them 'sexy'?
Mia was one woman whom Sirius could not work his charms upon.
"Bug off, you rake," she snarled, twisting out from his embrace. "Let's make this clear. Tonight will include none of the following: talking, touching, or snogging… and definitely no shagging!"
Sirius merely stared at her for a moment, perplexed. He turned to Frank and gave him a quizzical look. Frank merely shook his head and turned away.
It was then that he spied Alice.
She had been waiting silently next to Mia, grinning quietly at the scene. Her normally straight dark hair had been curled elaborately into shiny, smooth ringlets and her eyes glimmered alluringly. Her dress was of a magnificent indigo and it pleated across her frame temptingly. As Frank teetered down the stairs, she stood a bit straighter, her head now even with his because of her towering stilettos.
Of course, Frank noticed none of this. He was, after all, a boy. He only saw the full picture, and never the details. But the full picture- it was enough.
He grinned lopsidedly at her, barely believing his luck at the beautiful girl standing in front of him.
It was one of those goofy little grins, the ones that young children who have been up to mischief have smeared across their angelic countenances, or the dog that just purposely relieved himself on the kashans in the corner has on his smug little muzzle, or those people who are completely in love have plastered on their dazed faces.
It's not their fault. They can't help it.
In a way, all those developing infants and disobedient canines and adult lovers (who are really children inside) are all in the same boat.
They're all creating mischief- for love is a mixture of mischief and the incredible feeling of joy associated with creating mischief with another wonderful person.
Or in some cases, the joy is associated with the alleviation of one's bladder on expensive rugs.
But that mischief should not be punished, simply because it is human nature (hound, as well). And also because it is way, way too much fun.
Words weren't necessary.
He simply held his arm out and she placed her petite one in his, and they walked out of the common room, happily anticipating the devilry that would happen that night.
A/N: I would definitely appreciate it if you reviewed... *hint hint* :)