Disclaimer: Don't own etc
AN: This is another fic based off of ChoCedric's fic Keep Holding On. This is set around chapter 13-ish.
"I can't believe it!" Rebecca Hardman shouted as she stormed into the empty classroom and Matthew Banner raised a curious eyebrow. This was not how he had expected his girlfriend to start their date, with her deep brown eyes flashing in anger and her mousy brown hair swinging about behind her. "I can't…" she growled angrily and she sat down with a heavy sigh. Matthew scooted closer to his girlfriend and put a comforting arm around her shoulders. She would tell him soon enough.
"It's just not fair! Jeffrey Bushman is busy crowing like an idiot because Harry Potter is on the run and his stupid, idiotic petition is no longer needed because he's no longer here!"
Matthew raised his eyebrows. He should really have seen this coming. He knew exactly what she was like. It was a part of why he loved this girl so much. Her sense of fairness and her dedication to it was so very attractive.
"What makes you think that he's innocent?" he asked and Rebecca let out a frustrated scream.
"I don't know if he's innocent or not!" she practically shouted. Matthew smiled as he watched her get more angry. "I don't know anything! But innocent or guilty, he deserves a fair trial at the very least! A chance to prove his innocence or guilt at the very least! What happened to the right to a trial!? What happened to justice!? It's not fair and it shouldn't have been like this!"
"I agree," Matthew said and Rebecca looked at him in shock. "I don't much care for Gryffindor's golden boy and I would be happy to see him out of Hogwarts, but this is not something we should be encouraging."
"You're not just saying that to make me happy are you?" she asked with a slightly puzzled expression and Matthew shrugged almost nonchalantly.
"No," he said as he sat back in his chair. "No. Accusing people without evidence and punishing people without even a fair trial is a very bad idea. It encourages very bad habits. Very bad habits indeed. A precedent that I think we should avoid." He chuckled with amusement at the look on his girlfriend's face. "Oh this isn't out of some raging sense of fairness, especially not to a Gryffindor."
"Of course not," Rebecca said with a slight smile as her eyes danced with amusement. He smiled back. It was a game they played and they both knew it.
"No, it's so much more than that. Can you imagine what would happen if we chased away anyone without any evidence? Why today it would be Harry Potter. Tomorrow it could be me. It could be our rising stars or even teachers who have caught the ire of our leaders. Can you imagine what would have happened if it had happened a couple of years ago, when the Chamber of Secrets was opened?" He paused and shook his head. "No, this is not something we should ignore."
"Exactly!" she practically shouted, waving her arms about angrily and almost hitting him in the process. (She didn't notice, but he didn't care. She was amazing when she was like this and he wouldn't change it for anything.) "Cedric was the embodiment of what Hufflepuff is supposed to be. Hufflepuff should be rallying together against this, not rushing to join the mob against him. This is supposed to be the sort of thing that Gryffindors or Slytherins," She paused and looked at him "No offence."
"None taken," he replied and she pressed on.
"We're supposed to be fair! We're supposed to want justice for Cedric, not chasing some kind of witch hunt against whoever is convenient!"
"Wasn't Jeff supposed to be one of Cedric's friends?" Matthew asked with a slight frown, before shaking his head slightly. "People can be weird about people they knew personally. It clouds their judgment and all that."
Rebecca threw her hands up in frustration and let out a small scream.
"That's exactly why he shouldn't be involved with this! He's just lashing out and not doing anything helpful. Cedric wouldn't have wanted this. It's all about making him feel better and that's it! Never mind what Cedric would have said or done! Never mind what actually happened or any kind of justice or anything! No, he's hurting and he wants to hurt whoever is convenient," she said slightly bitterly.
"Well I doubt you're going to change his mind about this. He probably thinks that he's doing the right thing, that this is justice." He held his hand up as Rebecca opened her mouth to say something.
"Convincing him that he's wrong is a dead end. I don't think he's going to admit he's wrong even to himself. But I don't think that your fellow Hufflepuffs are going to be so closed minded to your side. At least some of them are And the Gryffindors are certainly going to back Potter. He's one of them and their golden boy. The Ravenclaws might be open as well, if you can put it across the right way. I might even be able to persuade a few Slytherins to look past their automatic dislike of Gryffindors to see why it's a bad idea."
She looked at him and a smile slowly started to cross her face. He smiled back. He could see the cogs turning in her head.
"So what would you do?" She asked and a thoughtful expression crossed his face . A bit of casual theatrics and fun for them to enjoy. She knew full well that he had already figured out what to do by now. And he knew that she knew.
"Well first you should talk to your fellow Hufflepuffs. Especially those who you think are still on the fence or agree with you. I can do the same with my fellow Slytherins. Persuade them that it will come back and bite us in the rear if we don't stop it now."
"What about the Gryffindors?" she asked and Matthew shook his head.
"No. Not yet anyway. They're already on Potter's side. Or at least most of them are. And we need it to come from outside Gryffindor. It needs to look like it's more than just house loyalty behind this," he said with a sigh. "We don't want the people who support Jeffrey to accuse us of being just a Gryffindor mouthpiece." He sighed again. "And you know that Slytherins would hate being called a Gryffindor mouthpiece. No, we need to do this outside Gryffindor."
Rebecca nodded thoughtfully and Matthew pressed on.
"In September, we'll present a counter-petition," He held his hand up as she opened her mouth. "We need time to get everything together. And we still don't know what's going to happen in the future. Dumbledore is under arrest and Harry is still a fugitive. And there's rumours about You-Know-Who being involved. It's better to do this properly than half baked. And if things escalate…well we'll just have to adapt and adjust accordingly."
She leaned over and kissed him with a smile.
"I knew there was a reason I loved my sneaky Slytherin boyfriend," she said in a teasing voice and Matthew kissed her.
"And I knew that my fair Hufflepuff girlfriend would pick the right side," he said with a smile and the two teenagers kissed once more. Organising their plans could come later after all.
AN: I am about 99% sure that ChoCedric will make this obsolete soon enough, but for now I'm just going to imagine that it's canon-ish until then.