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Just a plain old English "One"

The only language I'm interested in learning is Italian, and I already know how to count in that. Sorry to buck the trend Seamus and sixth years. And speaking of which, sixth years, with the exception of Quintus you're all as about as subtle as Sloper whenever Teagan Moran walks by. Even Trelawney must realise you're up to something.

Sooo, career talks. I don't need a visit to Trelawney to foresee what is going to happen. I'll be given a sternly appraising look over the top of Professor McGonagall's glasses and told that my marks aren't high enough for what I want to do, yet too high for what I don't want to do, and then told to pull my act together and sent on my way with a Ginger Newt or two. Three, if she's especially annoyed with me.

And has anyone else created or come across the concept of a plateau or default mark? That is, what you know you can usually get by not slacking of exactly but just sort of going through the motions of things. For example, I seem to pull an "E" for most subjects, and am currently averaging that for History of Magic. Yet I known than in order to get something higher than my plateau mark, namely, an "O," I'll have to work that much harder and am still not guaranteed success. So it just doesn't seem worth it, you know? Particularly since it is History of Magic.

Susan, I'm so thankful you're talking to me again.

- Stephen Cornfoot, (Temporarily) One-Armed Keeper


What is it that you want to do after school?
I'm considering going into foreign relations like my dad. Though as I was telling Padma, my Italian needs work. So I'll probably take a year or so off and study to improve on it more. Dad can speak without an accent. Can you imagine?

And what about yourself? You're so bright and good with people, I can't imagine you being anything else than successful with what you put your mind to.

Speaking of Italy, I'm Portkeying a bunch of mates with myself and the brat and brattess to Mum and Dad's villa. What are your plans?
I have always wondered how he can do that. I still cannot manage to speak without a hint of a Spanish accent when I speak English, nor can I hide my English accent when I speak Spanish. It is not fair, really. But being in foreign relations will be great for you. You will be brilliant at it and will you keep me updated on how your accent is going? Maybe there is a trick that I have missed.

Except for marrying Theo, I honestly have no idea what I want to do with my life. I was thinking about something with music, but I really am not talented enough to make that a career. There are so many options out there and how can I possibly choose one?

Oh, that will be fun! Who is going with you? I really do not have any plans. I will not be going home, so I suppose I will stay at the school and study.
There's nothing wrong with having an accent. I think yours is rather adorable. I particularly like your "r's." The lack of one just shows the extent to which my father has mastered the language, though it's extremely difficult to lose your accent entirely as an adult and you can still speak a language very well with one. I will definitely keep you posted on how my efforts go though.

You should do whatever you want. You only get one life after all, so why compromise it? Even if you don't succeed, it's worth it just to give it a shot. You don't want to be in your eighties and thinking, "What if?" I can't imagine anything worse than ending my life that way. And you have so many different talents to choose from. The meeting with McGonagall will probably help to point you in the right direction too. Besides, we're still young. There's no law saying we have to make our mind up now and that we can't change it later.

So far there's the three Cornfoots, obviously, and Terry Boot, Lisa Turpin, Zacharias, Cadwallader and Luna Lovegood. And that must be a dreary thought, staying at the school while we're off in Tuscany. Oh, unless you came with us? Would you like to come with us since you don't have other plans? You'd be able to get by linguistically since if you speak Spanish slowly, Italians could understand you well enough, we have a nice big villa so while you'd probably have to share a bedroom with one of the girls there's still plenty of space - and it's Italy.
Adorable? I do not think it is at all. Especially with how Katherine can be. She was always been a right pain where my accent is concerned. Actually, writing about Italian...do you think you could talk to me in Italian when we work on our project? I have not had anyone to talk with for a while. I started to study it right after fifth year, actually. Mum thought it would be a good idea to be multilingual.

Well, I think that no matter what I do with my life, there will always be a "What if?" somewhere. Really, I do not have many talents. I can play the piano and cello somewhat decently, but that is about it. I think I am just stuck with figuring out the first step.

Go to Italy? YES!!! I suppose that I could go, as long as it is all right with your family. I do not want to cause anyone any inconvenience.
Katherine is just jealous because she doesn't speak Spanish as well as you. From what I've heard you're practically bilingual. And I can certainly try and talk to you in Italian, but I warn you that I'm not fluent. I know enough to express myself and use it socially, but I could never write an essay in it. I think because I learnt it through living there I speak and understand it better than I read and write it.

There'll only be a "what if" because you have so many different options to choose from since you're so good at everything.

No inconvenience at all. I'm sure my parents will be delighted to have you. They still ask me what you're up to and how you're doing.

Private to Susan: Well, I hate to bring up an awkward matter, but I wasn't planning on asking significant others to come. Our villa is big but not that big, and the only reason why Luna is coming is because Zacharias is my cousin, and he comes out of his shell a bit more when she's around. So would it be alright if Theodore didn't join us? I'm still waiting to hear back from one or two friend I've asked, and to be honest, I think he'd prefer to stay behind as he doesn't seem to enjoy groups and social occasions anyway. So it might be kinder just to leave him.
Actually, I am bilingual. I do not know if she is jealous so much as being Katherine. You have met her, she is not exactly the nicest of my cousins. You do not have to be fluent as any talking will help. I am sure that we can muddle our way through a conversation together.

No, I wish that were true, but it is not. I just keep second guessing myself at every turn.

Do they really? I feel horrible about that. I should really owl them. Oh, Merlin, what they must think about me after all of this.

Private to Stephen: Oh. Well, he has yet to mention anything and I have no idea what he is doing for the holiday. I...I will have to see. I do not want him to be hurt if I do not spend it with him. But...Italy.
Yes, I definitely converse in Italian. I've even been on dates with girls who don't speak any English, and we've managed. I just wouldn't class myself as fluent.

You just need to have faith in yourself and give yourself a chance. Learn to look on things as challenges rather than immovable obstacles. Success wouldn't be so highly related if is came easily to the point where it was a given.

Private to Susan: Oh. Bugger. She might not be coming. If there was space I'd offer to invite him, but I don't think anyone else would want him there. Yes. That is a very big "but." I can understand your dilemma though.

I think you should just do what makes you happy, as he has his own friends to spend time with. Your friends don't have to be his friends and your life doesn't have to be his life and you don't have to spend every waking moment together. If you went to Italy, think of all you'd be able to tell him after you got back. And he might have some stories of his own.

Another option is that you could come for the first half of it and then leave several days early and spend the rest of the holidays with Theodore.

As I said, my parents would be thrilled to see you again. But no pressure. Just do whatever is the best for you. I'd love to catch up on all you've been doing the past two years, but I also want to see you happy. Relationships can't be easy things to juggle, particularly in your NEWT year.
You should consider becoming a motivational speaker. You are quite good at it, you know.

Private to Stephen: I will think on it. When is the latest I can give you my answer?

I really would like to go to Italy and talk with everyone, but spending quality time with Theo would be wonderful as well. I have been trying to juggle my relationships since the beginning of the year and I am still lost as how to do it as I was before.
Some people are easier to motivate than others. You with all your various talents are rather easy to find nice things to say about, nice and sincere things too. My sister, on the other hand...

Private to Susan: You can decide almost right up to when the Porkey activates, if you wish. I gave Mum a rough estimate of how many people to expect, so as long as I don't go above that number and there's enough beds for everyone, she won't mind. Take all the time you need.

You sound a little frazzled, if you don't mind my saying so. But it must be going well if the two of you are engaged, right? Either way, I have a sympathetic ear available, if it's needed.
As I said before, I do not have many talents. I can play music decently, but I do not consider it a talent. Your sister is lovely, even if she can be a bit difficult at times. How has she been?

Private to Stephen: It may very well be up to the time of the Portkey. You know how long it takes me to make a proper decision. Maybe I should just scrap the whole thinking process as that tends to get me into even more trouble in the long run. Hmmm...maybe a pro and con list. I can do that. I think so, at least. No harm in trying it, right? And now I am rambling and I am sorry. I tend to write what I think, but you knew that already and now this is turning into a strikeout and that is unfortunate as that's a waste of ink, so I'm stoping now.

I am frazzled, but it has nothing to do with my engagement. Actually, that's a lie. But he makes me happy so I can forget all the negativity and such from my friends, right? But my friends could be right and I am wrong, but Hannah did not mind and neither did Wayne. His friends did not mind at all. Zacharias still hasn't talked to me much at all since I made the announcement. If I go to Italy, maybe I can make up with him. And Cad. I really don't like my friends being unhappy with something that I'm doing. But if it makes me happy, then it's a good thing, right?
It seems like this conversation is going around in circles. To settle it I will just have to listen to you play sometime and judge your aptitude for myself. We have a grand piano in our Tuscan villa. And Rachel is doing well. She's even managing "O's" in two subjects and is terrorising the other sixth years. I receive complaints about her every day.

Private to Susan: A list would be a great idea. You'd be able to view things in a more objective manner that way, when it's all laid out in black and white in front of you. And sometimes you find that what you've written in the "Pro" column negates and contradicts items in the "Con" column. Like something that you thought was a "Pro" isn't actually true. Or vice versa.

Now I'm torn. I want to tell her what I think of Nott and ask her to at least think, really think, things over, before she marries him. But then I'd just be another friend she feels is against her, and quite frankly, it's not my place to say. At least not yet. I think it's best to shelve my own feelings about Nott and choose the neutral route. If he makes her happy, than what I think isn't important at all. But I suspect he doesn't, that is, at least not as much as he should. Well, ultimately you have to make the decision, not your friends. If you are happy with Theodore and you feel that he's good for you and that you're with him for the right reasons, that's what important.

At the same time you have to remember that your friends do have your best interests at heart and are trying to look out for you, whether it may be misguided or not. I know it is frustrating, but they do mean well. They could be wrong about the nature of his character and how suitable the two of you are for each other, and obviously you have spent more time in his company than they. If he truly makes you happy and your life is improved for having him in it and he brings out your best self, than they should accept that. Their opinion isn't the one that is important. Yours is.

But then again, they do want to see you happy. Zacharias, Cadwallader and Ernie for all their faults are unselfish and reasonably mature blokes, and while I don't know Ernie well enough to speak for him, I suspect that if Zacharias and Cadwallader thought that Theodore was indeed the best person for you and made you content, they could put their own feelings of him to one side. They are not so selfish as to wish you to be miserable simply because they are not fond of Theodore themselves. They may think your closeness clouds your judgement and that there is something you are not seeing.

His friends may have not minded, but they are his friends, not yours. They may like you, but ultimately it is his well-being they are more concerned with.

If I may be so bold, you seem a bit uncertain yourself, and not just because Zacharias and Cadwallader disapprove of him. I think you should try and clear your head and think things through as free of outside pressure as possible. What is the best decision for you? Not your friends. Not even Theodore. You only get one life, as I said, and it is neither your duty or responsibility to waste it trying to make other people happy and content and fulfilled if you are not so. Perhaps this could be another thing you could make a list about as well? If you are unsure, that is.
I suppose you will have to. Since Terry and his other bandmates have been spending more time in the music room, I haven't been there as much as I had been. Which I'm not happy about at all. I had that room to myself for years and now...I barely can get time alone.

Two "O's"? That's fantastic! Well, at least it's good to know that some things don't change.

Private to Stephen: I made the list and well...I shall be joining you and the others in Italy. ITALY!!

Yes, I know that I have to make the decision, but I still value my friends's input. They are the most important people in my life after my family.

And I'm glad that someone gets it. That is exactly what I have been feeling and thinking for the last few months. It's wonderful that you understand both sides to it. I don't think anyone else really does. It's either they like him or they don't.

I am uncertain.

Theo is a wonderful man and I am so glad that he loves me...but I was going to end it when he proposed to me. I can't imagine my life without him in it. He loves me and I love him more than anyone. He makes me happy. But...of course I worry. You know how my parents are. I am absolutely terrified. The only time my mother is happy is when I'm home. She loved my papa more than anyone, but then it stopped. I don't want that to happen with Theo and I. Also, you know the luck my family has. I'm terrified that my parents are going to be murdered because my papa married a Muggle and not a Pureblood. Everyone in my family has been murdered, except for my papa and me. We are the only Bones that are left, so who knows if we will still be alive at the end of the war. I do not want Theo to have to deal with anything happening to me. I don't want anything to happen to him, because I really can't handle if someone else I love died. So I don't even want to get married because who knows how long our happiness will last. But then I cannot imagine being without him, even if I left him to keep him safer. I don't really think a list would help me at all. I wouldn't even know where to start with it.
Sorry! That's my fault as well. I'm in the band too. I'll make sure you have time to practice in the future.

Rachel may be working hard now, but last term she was underperforming woefully. McGonagall contacted my parents about her, and they forbade her from having any guests in the villa for Easter. So I think that sort of shocked her out of it, and now she's doing better academically.

Private to Susan: That's fantastic! We'll really look forward to seeing you there, and I'm certain you'll have a great time. I will write a list on my journal of what people need to bring closer to time, but make sure you have a swimsuit or two. Our pool is heated.

I don't much care for Nott either. I try to be impartial. Among your friends, Hannah and Wayne appear to be happy about the match. But Hannah would be happy about anything so long as you seemed to be so, and Wayne is a bit of a romantic. On the surface it seems like a story out of an 18th century romance novel - boy from a bad family falling for and successfully wooing a wealthy, beautiful, wonderful girl from a family of impeccable reputation. And on the surface all looks rosy, but you have just told me yourself that it isn't necessary the case. If you look upon Hannah and Wayne as being the optimistics of the group, then Ernie and Cadwallader are the realists, and Zacharias is, well, Zacharias, so he is the doom-and-gloom pessimist.

I know you are.

So if I'm to understand correctly, you started to end things and that was when he proposed? Would you feel better about things if his proposal had come at another time, and has what led to your wanting to break things off been resolved?

We all have these fears, and you more so than most. I know that it is not easy and it is our natural instinct to want to protect our families and loved ones, but you cannot let them rule your life. That way You-Know-Who has almost won. Fear is his biggest weapon, so while we shouldn't act rash and put ourselves in danger, if we take it away from him, then that will be a huge step towards finally defeating him once and for all.

So this is what you think of the war. What do you think of Theodore for himself, aside from the fact that you love him? Are you a better person for having him around? Has he improved your life? Is he a good and calming influence on you? What do you want to come out of all this? What, realistically, do you think is the best thing that could happen? Are you ready for marriage? Is he? What are his good or bad points, and are they things you can deal with, or not? Who's doing the compromising, you or him? Or both of you?

It seems like your thoughts are rather jumbled, so (if it's something you feel comfortable doing) I think that a list would greatly help you. Also getting away from it all for a while might help you to clear your head and think about things in a calmer manner.
Well, I am not playing with a purpose, except to practice, so you and the others need it more than I do. Susan Bones, you're doing it again! Stop acting like everything is okay when it bothers you. The music room is your only escape and you're willing to let it go. No, that is not okay.

Oh, dear. Poor Rachel. I cannot believe she did so badly. It's her NEWT year next year and she can't afford to do badly. Her future depends on her grades. What on earth is she thinking?

Private to Stephen: Your...you have a pool. A heated pool? Why didn't you say you had a pool in the first place? I want to start packing now. What's the weather like this time of year?

Yes, that is exactly how I see them. Should I listen more to the realists and not to the optimistics?

How it happened is that I had been feeling a bit neglected. Even though Theo and I spend almost every day together, usually we're doing homework or he's working on the paper. Really, we haven't had much “us” time. We haven't really been talking that much, but that's also because of how busy we both are. So I thought that maybe he really didn't want to be with me. But when I went to talk with him, he said how much he loved me and then proposed. He said that he had been carrying the ring with him since winter holiday. We have been trying to resolve our issues since then.

I cannot help but be afraid. The only thing I can do is push those thoughts to the back of my mind. I know that they will not help me in the long run, but what else am I supposed to do? I shouldn't have been born in this time. I cannot deal with war. But I have to.

This is going to make me seem like a horrible person, but I have no idea. I was a complete wreck last year. Now I'm happy. When I'm with him, I don't feel lost anymore. Like I actually have a reason to be here. I'm not ready to be married, but we will have a long engagement and getting everything planned will help me be ready. I'm seventeen years old. I just want to be with the man I love.
No no, you need that place, and really, we have been selfish. Let me know next time you're practicing. I'd love to hear you play.

And naughty Susan. Stop acting like your wants and needs are worth so much less than other people's wants and needs.

I think the problem with Rachel is that with her brains, she's not used to having to work for her marks. But Mum and Dad refusing to let her have guests over shocked her, if her marks last term didn't.

Private to Susan: Indeed we do. I'll leave more details in a later entry, but the weather is a lot more mild than Scotland. Still, Tuscany can get a bit cool in Spring, so I'd recommend bringing layers: jeans, a jumper or two and a light coat. But the temperature won't be a factor when it comes to the pool, fortunately.

I think you should listen to them all. Or at least try and find out why they feel the way they do. Why are Hannah and Wayne happy for you? Is it because they think Theodore is a wonderful person, or because you appear to be content? Conversely, try to probe Ernie and Cadwallader for the origins of their feelings. Even Zacharias too, though I of all people know he can be a bit prickly.

I...I think I see. Does his response satisfy you? You still appear a bit perplexed by it all.

War makes us act differently to how we would normally. I haven't had the misfortune to be exposed to it in the way that you have, but if it comes down to that, well, I hope that it would bring out the better sides of my nature and not the worse.

But I don't think you are giving yourself enough credit. You are dealing with it, and very well too. You may not feel good, but that is to expected. So long as you are surviving and functioning, then that is the best that anyone can do. And you're doing it. You are much stronger than you consider yourself to be. You just have to realise it and have faith in yourself. I wish you had the same belief in yourself that I do.

I really hope that I'm not prying, but is the reason for your contentment that you're in a relationship with Theodore, or that you're in a relationship - period? I am not trying to hurt you. But you seem to be struggling to make a decision, and I am trying to be a good friend and ask questions that would help you make that decision.
Yes, okay. I will let you know the next time I go. I have been terribly busy with school and Quidditch, so it may be a while.

Naughty Stephen for making me feel like a reprimanded child. I cannot help the way I feel and I just want everyone to be comfortable.

I hope she gets it together. When she starts applying herself, she'll be brilliant at whatever she tries her hand at.

Private to Stephen: Do you have any idea how excited I am for the pool? It is going to make the rest of school before the holiday much more excruciating.

I really do not know. I will have to ask them. Probably over the journals, though, as confrontations have never been my strong point.

Of course I am a bit perplexed by it all. I was going to break up with him and then I ended up being engaged. His response does satisfy me as he had wanted to marry me before I tried to break up with him. So, he really does care about me.

I hope that you never, ever have to lose anyone close to you. It's the worst feeling in the world when you get one of those letters from the Ministry saying that someone in your family has been found dead and they won't even tell you what really happened. But then you see what had happened inside your aunt's house and know what happened. That she was murdered....

Oh my, that was getting exceedingly depressing, wasn't it? Yes, I hope nothing bad happens to anyone in your family. Or your friends as well.

And no, I'm content because I'm in a relationship with Theo. Last year I had been with Kenneth for over six months before I broke up with him. I was not content at all with him. You are being a good friend, Stephen. No one else has asked me any of these sort of questions and I greatly appreciate your effort in trying to help me sort through all of it.

But my hand is starting to cramp up and I have no idea how you are managing to write this much, since your other arm is in a sling. How is it doing by the way? Is your arm getting any better?
That would be great. I think you'll put me to shame, personally. It would be nice to be able to hear Mozart how it's meant to be played, for a change.

I wasn't trying to make you feel like a reprimanded child. I was joking, though it probably didn't come across with it being through the journals. Imagine me tapping you on the end of your nose as I did, the way I used to when we were younger, then you'd have an idea of the tone. I know that you can't help how you feel, and your consideration is part of what makes you such a wonderful person. But have a care to only go out of your way for people who will appreciate it, and better still, reciprocate it. The world woud be so much better if everyone was like you, but not everyone repays generousity with generousity, unfortunately.

I hope she gets it together too. She used to be a hard worker, but now she's become a bit more distractable. I wonder what's distracting her. She has a boyfriend, doesn't she? Oh Rowena, she has a boyfriend.

Private to Susan: I just don't want you to make the right decision for the wrong reasons. Or the wrong decision for the right reasons.

I am sorry you have all these worries, and I am grateful to be able to do any little thing that can help you. But my wrist is starting to fall asleep, so I'll just leave things by saying that you can write to me or talk to me about this whenever you like.

With my shoulder, none of our stuff is doing any good, but the anti-inflammatory Muggle medication that Mandy Brocklehurst gave me is doing the job. They say that I should be back practicing next Tuesday. Thank you for asking, and I'm very happy that we're friends again. You've...you've made me realise how much I've missed you, I suppose.
My mum's Italian and I'm bilingual because of her. Want some help with it?
Sure, I'd appreciate any assistance I can get. I understand it well and speak a decent amount, but I still have trouble with the grammar, particularly the conjunctive tenses.
I hate the grammar too.

Whereabouts in Italy are you going this Easter?
Yes, but you're bilingual, so you just learnt it along with English. You don't have to bother with it. I unfortunately am not so lucky.

My parents' villa in Tuscany. So, have you made up your mind whether you're coming or not?
But I still have to write it too for cousins and my grandparents.

I haven't been invited yet.

Bollocks. I asked Cadwallader to invite you on my behalf, but I suppose he forgot. So consider yourself invited. Are you coming or not?
I'll have to ask my parents first, they'll want to know how much it costs etc
It won't cost you a thing. We'll be Portkeying there together and staying at the villa for free. Though come to think of it, we might actually need two Portkeys with all the people I've invited. The only way you'd spend money is if we went to Florence for a day, so it might be good to bring some Muggle currency.
My parent's don't understand Portkeys in fact I'm struggling myself but I'm sure they'll let me go as we won't have air fares etc to pay on the proviso that we see my grandparents and take my cousins out with us.

As for Euros, do you want some Wizard money changed into it?
Excellent. Are your cousins near Tuscany? It will be so awesome to get to interact and spend an extended amount of time with actual Muggles. I mean, I do get to see them, but usually only briefly and even then I'm pretending not to be me. Well, I'm still me, but just not a wizard me, so not me...ahhh...

I think my dad will take care of the currency. He always seems to have those things organised. The Muggle money will have to be in Euros, but Knuts and so on are universal. You can still use them in magical areas of Italy.
Yeah. I also have cousins in Milan and Rome.

I've never been to the Muggle areas of Italy but I know a lot of good restaurants in Tuscany
Crap, I was meant to ask you. Sorry. But Stephen has asked you now, so it's alright, isn't it? Stephen is the left half of my brain. I wouldn't remember to breathe if he didn't remind me.
Quite. Remind me of why I even asked you to invite Devon on my behalf? Oh, sorry. Reminding isn't really your forte, is it?

I'm only messing with you, mate. I asked and it's not too late for him to owl home, so no harm done.
What will you do when Stephen finishes at Hogwarts?
Get lost on his way to class and end up in a cave with a hag, that's what.
I knew I forgot something when I saw your entry. So express owled mum and dad, and they okayed my going to Italy with you.

Just as well. Since apparently Maddy has this Easter Hols sleepover thing happening. I still shudder when I think what happened the last time I was around at one of those.
Excellent. It will be like a mini-Ravenclaw and Hufflepuff party.

Private to Michael: Oh, but I would imagine that you'd look rather fetching with blue eyeshadow and bronze lip gloss. How very house pride of you too.
Who else is invited again?

Private to Stephen: Ha bloody ha. Only if you do so as well. Best friend solidarity and all that. Wouldn't be fair of me if you didn't get a 'makeover' as well.
Terry, Lisa, Cadwallader, Zacharias and Luna are definites, and Summerby and Susan are still contemplating their opinions. And me and the brats will be there, obviously.

Private to Michael: Don't worry about my cousin. Zacharias will behave himself unless you provoke him, and Luna's presense will calm him down a lot. She's been a very good influence on him.

I don't quite know what to do about Susan. She was excited about coming, and then she seemed to remember Nott and seemed to become almost despondent. I'd love her to come, and I think that's what she'd prefer to do too, but I don't want to sway her too much towards one course of action or another since my own opinion on Nott isn't particularly neutral. That, and I think she should make up her mind for herself.

But I really want her to come! We used to be so close and we didn't talk for two years due to a silly misunderstanding, and now that we've finally settled things, well, I'd just like to spend time with her again before Notts whisks her away to the ends of the earth after NEWTs are done with.

I think I'll take a raincheck on the makeovers, thank you. I'm the brains and you're the pretty one, remember? Or is it the other way around? Actually, I think you have them both, you lucky sod, you.
At least Maddy isn't coming along, there'd be no escape then. How'd Summerby manage an invite?

Private to Stephen:Now see that kind of talk would suggest you like Susan more than a friend. Of course I don't how your mind works, so I won't go assuming anything.

Well I hope he can behave himself. You know he and I don't exactly get along and have an almost non-friendly rivalry.

If you think about it, I'm an incredibly lucky sod. Not only brains and beauty, but also brawn. Seeing as how I'm a Beater and all.
Devon is my friend. I asked Cad to invite him, but a pensieve he isn't.

Private to Michael: What? Of course I don't like Susan. Well, not in that way at any rate. She's a wonderful, special girl, but I have concern for her only as a friend. You have to understand, when you grow up with someone, friendships have a different type of depth.

He will. He wouldn't dare start anything on my turf, and I suppose I could take him if it came to that. Which it won't. We sort of outgrew that phase when we stopped riding Bluebottles. But still, I make sure he's aware of that little snippet of information.

Ah yes, you have it all. Why else would I be your friend other than to worship your greatness? And why would you need to be friends with someone with my lack of all three qualities? Oh right, I remember. To borrow my History of Magic notes so you can travel to the Land of Nod during class, that's why.

Private to Stephen

Mhmm. And sometimes friendship develops into something more and less platonic. But don't worry I'll stop there and not tease you about it.

All right then. Do you find it at all curious that a wizarding broom company named their broom after the Portuguese Man of War? Just a little bit weird.

Like you were saying, if it weren't for you I'd be failing History of Magic. Which I might add is only useful for catching up on sleep. You haven't been worshipping of late, I might have to start charging interest.

Private to Michael

Nope. I do not have more than friendship and less than platonic feelings towards Susan, thank you Michael. Because that would mean The Talk I'm planning to give her, The Talk about how I suspect she's not following her heart where Nott is concerned and that she shouldn't worry about ending up alone as she can do so much better, would have ulterior motives. Which it doesn't. You can tease all you want, as there is nothing to tease about. So bearing that in mind, can I tease you about Tracey? Touche.

It is rather odd, now that you mention it. I suppose they just wanted to give the impression that it flutters rather than fires through the air, as it is a children's broom.

History of Magic is useful for catching up on sleep only if you have someone you know you can trust to stay awake and take notes on your behalf. If it wasn't for Hermione Granger and myself, the universe as seventh years know it would cave in. And my apologies for my lack of devotion. It is rather hard to worship one-armed.

Private to Stephen

I don't know, it's not as if Tracey and I started out as friendship y'know... Besides we(me and her) both decided that it's just FWB anyway.

Yes, well lucky for me I do have you. Hmm, I'll let you off this time. But no slacking off in the worshipping department next time you have a broken arm... or leg.

Private to Michael

Yes, I did pick up on that. What exactly do you say to that? Somehow "congratulations" doesn't really seem appropriate. But it's interesting how if you look at it one way, an open relationship is a few steps up from FWB. Except in an open relationship, you have sex with more than one person, but you two are only sleeping with each other...ah, I'll leave you alone now, mate.

I'm trying to do work on the DADA project but my attention span is lagging. Fancy a kitchen raid?

Private to Stephen

It'd be pointless to sleep with another girl. Look at her, for Rowena's sake! Why should I try to get another girl when I have that? But dating's never really been brought up and it could have been but never was but things work the way they are. Besides, I 'dated' Fiona and see how THAT turned out.

Kitchen raid sounds good right about now.

You know what's really odd about this project for us? You're working with Susan and I get to work with Theo. I wonder if this is karma or something.

Private to Michael

Well, if they're working for you, then there's no point ruminating on how your relationship is a bit more unconventional that other people's. You may not agree, but personally I think you're a couple in everything but name. Which is much better than being a couple in name only, of course.

Righto then. Meet me downstairs.

Yes, that is bizarre, now that you point it out. We didn't speak for over two years, and now we get assigned together. And Nott gets assigned to you. How's that been, working with one of Tracey's friends?

July 2007

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