Longbottom is at my party.
Can you not see the inappropriateness of this development? Can you not see how my fists are clenching at the mere thought of him helping himself to my vol au vents?
The worst thing is, it's all my doing. Well, my parents doing. They were the ones who allowed people to bring along plus ones. The real criminal, however, is Goyle for thinking it was an intelligent idea to bring that horticulturist weirdo to my birthday shindig.
Did she think it was a brilliant idea to bring the moron who I had been playing pranks for several months to my party where my father was shuffling around on the dance floor like a typically rhythm-lacking old man – a fact which he could definitely use as bribery/tool for great embarrassment?
Exactly. This does not bode well.
Plus, the look he just gave me... Well, let's just say it doesn't appear he's too chuffed that I've been tipped to replace him as Head Boy whilst his 'inappropriate behaviour' is being investigated. If I was a weaker man, I would have been terrified.
Luckily I know the worst he can do is brandish a pair of blunt secateurs my way. Whereas I am skilled in a variety of deplorable hexes, that and I have a sword. Therefore I would most definitely win in a fight between the two of us.
"Work it, Potter! I like your style!"
Is that my father speaking?
Merciful Merlin, is that Pot-head engaging in some serious macaroni (...Macaroon?) dancing with my father by his side? They look like the weirdest comedy duo ever.
I think it is safe to assume that this may in fact be the most humiliating experience of my life. My reputation that I once held as ice-king of Slytherin – cold and aloof yet still, suave and demure - has long gone down the toilet. Now I am just 'that idiot wearing a tin can whose Dad dances like a hippogriff with a permanent jelly-legs jinx'.
And just when I think things can't get any worse...
"Well... this makes a change."
I grit my teeth. "Just because I am in a room full of ministry personnel, Longbottom, does not mean I won't hex you so bad that even your potted plants are screaming for mercy."
"Potted plants can't scream," he informs me pedantically – sounding an awful lot like a ginger someone we all know and get incredibly annoyed by in lessons...
"I'll remind you of that next time I whip a mandrake out its pot and you get knocked unconscious," I remind him. His slightly chubby cheeks pink up a bit when he realises that I have just outsmarted him.
It's strange... I think people forget how intelligent I am because of my dastardly good looks. It's one thing being really, really ridiculously good looking, but many people neglect to remember that, yes, some of us are that fortunate to be blessed with staggering handsome-ness and straight O's.
"What do you want, anyway?" I demand, sniffing in derision at his 'Zorro' costume. He hardly looks like an agile Hispanic do-gooder. More like a jolly cowboy with a cape and mask.
"I was just going to say that it makes a nice change that you're clothed for once," he remarks. Though the look he gives my suit of armour suggests that he still disapproves.
Whatever, I don't need approval from a chubby cowboy.
"Don't worry, I'm sure I will rectify that error later," I respond, taking another sip of my firewhiskey. "It's tradition..."
"What? To get naked at your family party?"
I roll my eyes. "Just wait till the old fogies leave to write up their cauldron reports and the like. That's when the party really starts. It's the perfect opportunity for you to prove that you're not a boring fart like you always appear to be."
Longbottom frowns. "Is that a challenge?"
"Take it how you like, Longbotts," I say, with a dry smirk. "But if you intend to impress Goyle I suggest you get your soppy Gryffindor arse over to the drinks table."
He looks at me wide-eyed before deciding that my advice is probably right and shuffling straight over to the drinks table to pour himself a glass of wine. Ponce.
Of course, I was bluffing about the whole youth's after party. As I have mentioned earlier, it is uncommon that there are any youth here to merit there being one... but since we have a handful here today I don't see why a couple of bottles of Ogden's finest Firewhiskey can't be put to one side for when all the boring Ministry people have gone home...
In fact. Now that I think about it a bit more – it's a bloody good idea.
Bottom's up to that! And I down the rest of my drink.
"Father!" I call merrily across the dance floor. My dad does a rather snazzy hip shake and jumps to face my direction. "Teach me the moves!"
If you can't stop them dancing like fools – join them.
"I'm not strong enough."
"Potter, don't lie. I've seen house elves that weigh more than her." I point at Huntworth who miserably looks at his slightly prominent belly. "Not you Huntworth, it was a figure of speech."
"Just pick her up, Malfoy. I need to carry the late-arrival slip so we can get into school again."
I snort. "Don't you think it'll look slightly suspicious that we're carrying an unconscious girl back into school."
Longbottom steps forward from where he's been whispering plant-related love poems into the ear of Goyle. "I asked my father to let us in. No questions asked."
Wow. Longbottom has actually proved useful. Hurrah for that. Never thought I would see the day.
"Now that that's settled, Malfoy, please carry her," Potter is practically begging on his hands and knees. "My arms will hurt if I have to carry her up the fifty million stairs up to the Head's common room."
"Oh! Is that what this is about! Stairs!"
"I'm also still slightly tipsy," Potter admits.
This is true. I, however, have sobered up since I was forced to spend the last hour away from any form of alcohol in order to bid farewell to many ministry guests that I didn't really know. Curse these family obligations.
Longbottom whips off his cape and flings it into Goyle's arms. "For goodness sake. I'll carry her."
What? What is this? Longbottom trying to upstage me by insinuating that his weedy little arms have more strength than mine?
This will NOT do.
I elbow him out the way dramatically. "Take my helmet, Potter." I take off my helmet, then realising I won't be able to carry someone with all this darn armour on, I start taking off the arm pieces. The body piece comes off last, so I am just left with a plain white t-shirt. Longbottom tuts loudly. Well, I did warn him earlier.
Merlin, it feels good to be freed from that metal cage.
I bend down and scoop Weasley up into my arms. Who knew that the Head Girl would get into such a state! I daresay this gives her no right to complain at me for those little things she insists are rule-breaking... like wandering into dinner topless. Frankly, passing out at a classmate's birthday party tops them all.
Shame she did really, I was looking forward to having a little après party. Obviously one cannot have a party when one's Head Girl is passed out in the corner.
I stand up with her in my arms and she lets out a little squeak. "At least she's alive," I say cheerfully.
Longbottom looks annoyed that he has lost his chance to look manly. Thankfully I have managed to prevent being over-shadowed by Longbottom trying to impress Goyle with saving poor Weasley's life. "Don't drop her, Malfoy," he whispers menacingly as we wander over to the fireplace to head back to school. "Or I'll hex you so badly your ferrety ancestors will be spinning in their graves."
"Are you calling my ancestors ferrety?"
Longbottom folds his arms smugly. "So what if I am?"
"Do you have a deathwish?" I ask through gritted teeth. Really, who is Longbottom to be calling my ancestors ferrety? His great grandmother who picked him up from the station at the end of last term was wearing a whopping great eagle on her hat. Who wears stuffed birds of prey on their head? It's just weird. "Because I wasn't holding an innocent ginger in my arms right now, you'd be making up the compost come next week."
"Eww," Zabini remarks. "That's a gross image."
"What's a gross image?" Goyle asks, holding out a pot of floo powder.
"Longbottom as compost," Zabini replies, grabbing a handful. "Don't ask," he adds when Goyle looks mighty confused, "those two are just having a moment." He steps in the fireplace. "See you in a minute lads, Hogwarts." And he is engulfed by green flames.
Longbottom grabs a handful of green powder and sneers at me as he walks past to the fireplace.
As soon as he vanishes, I declare, "I swear he has turned into more of a prat recently."
Goyle shrugs her shoulders. "He's nice most of the time. You just bring the inner goblin out of him," she tells me, holding out the pot to me.
"How the hell am I meant to do this?" I ask, looking down at Weasley who appears to be just asleep rather than passed out. Would it be bad if I poked her awake?
Potter stumbles over. Looks like Weasley wasn't the only one to overdo it on the firewhiskey front. Luckily Potter is far more able to hold his drink. "Side long apparition?"
I immediately retort with, "You can't apparrate in Hogwarts grounds." Goyle gives me a funny look. "It's in Hogwarts: A History," I reply in explanation. Then I catch myself before I say anything else that makes me look like a total loser-ish nerd. Merlin, if I didn't know better I'd say that I was turning into Weasley or something. I've become such a geeky wuss recently.
"Shall I wake her up?" Goyle asks, peering down at Weasley's ginger mass of hair. I can barely see my arm it is concealed behind the enormous bush atop her head. When neither Potter or I give her any response to the contrary, she points her wand and says, "Ennervate."
Weasley blinks her eyes open. And immediately begins flailing around.
I do the gentlemanly thing and lean down a bit so when I drop her she has less far to fall.
Then she starts giggling. "Malfoy your hair looks wonderful tonight."
I must admit that I agree with her there. My hair does look spectacularly coiffed this evening and I am glad that somebody has noticed, even if they are so sozzled that they can't even stand up. "Why thank you, Weasley. Your hair looks remarkably less bushy than usual."
It looks just as bushy as usual, but she grins with delight and adjusts her devil horns happily. "Where's the party gone?"
"We're taking the party back to Hogwarts!" Potter announces. (This is news to both myself and Goyle). He lunges forward and grabs two bottles of Firewhiskey from the table next to him, lifts them up to the air and lets out a holler of victory, before tucking one under his armpit, grabbing a handful of floo powder and disappearing in a flash of green.
"Well, Pot-head certainly has cheered up now that his cousin's conscious again," I comment drily.
I suddenly feel a hand on my leg, and then Weasley is standing in front of me. She used me to help her up? What am I? A banister! Goyle holds the floo powder pot out to her. "Say Hogwarts really clearly."
"Hogswash," is Weasley's worrying response.
"This will not end well," I declare. Jumping forward and grabbing some powder for myself and stepping into the fireplace with Weasley at my side. "Hold on," I tell her, before dropping the powder to my feet with a loud, "Hogwarts!"
Weasley is clinging round my neck with such a vice grip that I am half worried my head will simply pop off and be flung out of one of the many fireplaces we are passing as we spin around in a tornado of dust and green sparks.
Thankfully, it does not, and we smoothly arrive in a dusty heap on the floor of the deputy Head's office, coming to a skidding stop at Professor Longbottom's feet.
I look up to see his face bearing down on me. "Evening, Mr Malfoy. Or should I say morning. Off to bed with you, and no fuss."
Unfortunately Weasley has landed rather unceremoniously on top of me, and with blushing cheeks she manages to stumble up without damaging any crucial regions (her knee goes very close to a certain area...) and promptly collapses onto a wall. The painting next to her observes her in astonishment.
Professor Longbottom gives me a strange look as I stand up. "I suppose you are responsible for this."
"Professor," I assert confidently, "Why on earth would I be responsible for..."
"Corrupting the Head Girl?" He grins slightly. Clearly a more forgiving character than his gremlin of a son.
"I'm afraid this time it's all her doing." Which is true. Alright, I may have encouraged her to engage in a bit of drinking which under usual circumstances she is far too prudish and boring to even attempt, but that does not mean I am responsible for the stumbling oaf she has become. That is all her doing. And Huntworth's.
I reach over to her and allow her to link her arm in mine for support. "I will escort her to her room," I inform him politely.
"You have your moments, Malfoy, but deep down I think you're more sensible than you let on," Professor Longbottom declares, looking pensively at our linked arms. Even the deputy head thinks I am becoming a were-Hufflepuff. I knew it. My transformation is almost complete!
I'm going to have to sort this out before the entire school thinks I am a total milksop.
"Malfoy dared me to drink firewhiskey," Weasley then declares, ruining the moment in its entirety. "He's evil."
Professor Longbottom smiles half-heartedly, "Or maybe not..."
Goyle then appears in the fireplace behind me and together we manage to persuade Weasley to stop stroking that lethal cactus, come with us and we'll sort you out.
Waiting for us in the hallway is a very impatient Longbottom and a very merry duo of Zabini and Potter.
"PARTY ON, MALFOY!" Zabini insists, thrusting a ¾ full bottle of firewhiskey into my empty hand. "Show this pathetic Gryffindor cur how to party like a Slytherin!"
Longbottom shakes his head with his arms folded. "If it wasn't a Saturday evening I would take points away from you."
"Stop being such a joykill, Ernest," Goyle says, taking the bottle from my hand and handing it to Longbottom.
Longbottom refuses to take it and shakes his head. "Oh no! Somebody has got to remain sober around here to keep you all in check. And what about Rose? I have to take her back to the Head's dorm."
He dives forward to take her arm, once again in a clear attempt to try dispute my manliness. What does he think? That I am incapable of taking an intoxicated girl who weighs about as much as a dried leaf up to her dorm?
Actually, now that I consider it, it sounds a bit dodgy. But, come on, it's Weasley. As if I would try something on her!
I scoop her up in my arms before Longbottom can reach her. "I know the password, it's fine."
Longbottom narrows his eyes at me. "I am not letting you take her on your own. I'm coming with you."
Goyle looks quite taken aback. "I'm sure Malfoy knows the way."
Zabini and Potter let out a synchronised screech of excitement at this point, near deafening me in my right ear. Potter bounds over to me and flings an arm round my shoulders. "Let's all go. Party in the Head's Common room! Hurrah!"
Potter then bounds towards Zabini and together they start skipping towards down the corridor. That is one image I never ever thought I would see.
"Wrong way!" Goyle shouts.
This will be a long night.
I look down in my arms to see Weasley looking at me with a most puzzling look upon her face. "What, Weasley?" Please don't tell me she is about to drunkenly insult me. I get enough of her calling me a cocky git when she's sober.
"I meant what I said."
I frown. "About me having lovely hair? I really do. I'm surprised you've never noticed it before."
"Not about that. About what I said to Goyle."
I look at her in confusion. "What did you say to Goyle?"
"It doesn't matter."
And then she promptly falls asleep.
Well, that was an interesting conversation. Not. I don't think she's ever passed up the opportunity to natter on endlessly about nothing whatsoever to me before, that or complain about something or other. I was half anticipating some remark about how my arms are bony, or that I smell too 'evil'.
I still can't believe she called me evil.
I will remind her of that tomorrow and hope that she severely recompenses for causing me so much emotional distress.
We, led by Longbottom, deposit Weasley on her bed, pull the covers over her and then return to the Head's Common room. Finally deciding it is safe to once again obtain a beverage (and seeing that it is only 12! Which is pitifully early for a Malfoy to be returning to bed, especially when it is now his birthday), I grab a glass of Firewhiskey.
In fact, I grab two. And to show Goyle that I am trying to not be so hateful towards her evil mite of a boyfriend (he's the evil one, not I) I hand one to him with a friendly smile. Or as friendly a smile I can muster whilst looking at his soily chops.
"Drink up, Longbottom," I say, lifting my glass.
He eyes the drink suspiciously.
"No, it's not poisoned. I may be a Slytherin but I have standards. I would never dare waste poison killing someone as pointless as you," I state, gulping my drink down in one and pouring another.
"Well. Thanks," Longbottom says, taking a delicate sip.
Don't know why he's sounding so offended. I just said I wouldn't poison him, and if that's not extending the hand of friendship then I don't know what is.
"I will not degrade myself thus..."
Goyle presses a glass to his lips and makes him drink further.
"HOGWARTS, HOGWARTS, HOGGY WARTY HOGWARTS..."
I turn to Zabini. "He's singing the school song, isn't he?"
"That is devotion, right there." Potter wipes a fake tear from his eye.
"Dare!" Zabini announces.
"I dare you to steal a pair of Longbottom's pants and wear them on your head!" Goyle says gleefully.
I grin cockily. "Kinky."
"Shut up, Malfoy," she screeches, throwing a pillow at my head.
"I am PANT-HEAD." Zabini clambers onto the coffee table. "I will protect this town from evil with my sidekick, SOCK-HANDS!"
Potter jumps up onto the sofa and jazz hands with a pair of Longbottom's socks on his hands.
Actually, would that make it jazz... socks?
Fir whiskle. Best thung evahhhhh!
"Who is your favourite Head Girl?"
"WEASHLEYYYYY! I LOBE HER!"
HA HA. Goysh is LAUGHIGN at me!
A/N: Apologies for there not being much Weasley/Malfoy action in this chapter... More next time methinks. But anyway, Malfoy is finally starting to get over his immense hatred for Longbottom and that can only be a good thing, right?
I hope you enjoyed this chapter, please let me know what you think :)