The Sharpest Lives

Disclaimer: I don't own any of the character and such that have appeared in the HP series. Sad, I know.
A/N: a friend and me played a guessing game with appearances and a few other things, and houses. Actually, I rather like it.
Summary: Spoiler warning. Nineteen years after the Battle of Hogwarts things are beginning to stir. Though Harry Potter's scar had not pained him since the day of the Dark Lords demise that leaves the question of what could possibly be happening in the magical community?

"It did for me."

He pondered his father's words. What if the Hat only did him that favor? What if it refused to listen to what he had to say? Albus glanced next to him at his brother meaning to ask him but James was busy taking the mickey out of Victoire. He sighed and sat back in his seat and stared longingly out the window. Maybe if he wished hard enough he could make this all go away. Couldn't he have been more like Rose? Even she looked more at ease than he did!

Albus wrinkled his nose. What would happen if he did get sorted into Slytherin? He didn't want to think on that, really, but his mind betrayed him. He got a vivid image of his parents trying to look pleased about it, and James just taking a laugh at it. None of that was like his family, except for James, that is. He would find a strange sort of glee in it. Wouldn't that mean that they couldn't talk to each other as much as they had liked, then? He bit his lip in thought and fidgeted in his seat.

The movement was not unnoticed by Rose who had reached out and patted his leg, smiling.

"A few more hours!" She whispered loud enough for him to hear over the arguing of James and Victoire. "Al, it'll be brilliant. Think of the stories Dad's told us, and what Uncle Harry-"

He blinked at his cousin. "Yeah, what Dad did, I know," and he smiled a bit. What Dad did, it made everything sound so much less scary.

Suddenly, James jumped to his feet with a "Whoop!" punching the air around him. "I knew it! I bloody knew it! Victoire and Teddy! Oh, man, wait until the house finds out. Does Uncle Bill know? Blimey!" He could have done a dance around the compartment, by the looks of it. But Victoire wasn't having any of it. She stood up and poked James square in the chest causing the younger boy to flinch.

"We are not 'aving this conversation!" She hissed at him, Albus stifled a laugh while Rose giggled. "It does not leave ze compartment," and the she cursed at him in French before sitting down again. James frowned before sitting down across from here again.

Rose fiddled in her seat, pulling her legs under her as she sat. Looking down at her for a moment or two in silence before she gasped. Looking between the two brothers as if she had just realized that only one of them had red hair, She pointed to Albus, a gesture that made him flinch, and said to James, "Where's he going to change, then? Mum told me to change before we arrived. You and Victoire changed before we got on the train, too. Al didn't. He's got to before we get to school!" Her voice hit a high note as she said this, it could have rivaled a squeal.

Albus felt his ears burn and was very certain that they were red. He looked to his brother hopefully, but scowled when he saw that ever-present grin. Realizing what James was about to say he planted his head into his hands and groaned. Why couldn't Mum have told him to change before they left? Now he would have to change in front of his cousins, his girl cousins. He was vaguely aware that Victoire had snickered something to herself in French before turning her back to him. With a sigh he got up to grab his trunk and said, "I'll be in Hufflepuff at this rate."

James had a row of laughter of which Albus tried fiercely to ignore.

Rose closed her eyes and waited patiently for him to quickly dress. The only thing that worried Albus was if someone were to walk past their compartment and see him with his trousers down. The very thought made him pulled them on and off much faster than he had ever done so in his life. Then came the white shirt, then the jumper, necktie, and lastly his robes. "Okay," he said quietly sitting down so that he could tie his shoes and stuff away his discarding clothing.

Victoire turned back around, and Rose opened her eyes. James smirked, giving his brother a hard pat on the back. "Not such a fuss, then? Did the same thing my first year. Vickie here had a right old laugh, didn't you?" Victoire scoffed and said nothing. "'Course Mum had told her to sit with me, too, and she had her friend with come with her. Can't say they like me much now," he said, his voice full of gloat.

Rose and Victoire rolled their eyes while Albus smiled faintly. "Yeah?" he asked, sounding hopeful. "What's it like, then, being sorted I mean. Is it anything like Uncle Ron says?"

James' smirk grew wider. "Oh, yeah. Yeah. Terrible, awful, actually. Mental torture it is. You sit up there, in front of everyone and they judge you based on four questions asked by the Head of each house. Your answers decide your house. Best not to think about it, really. They say if you try to hard they make you start all over!"

There Albus sat. He didn't believe James had said. The Hat still did the sorting, Dad told him so! And even Rose was giving James her 'You're a complete idiot' look before shaking her head with a snort. That was some relief at least.

"There are times when I hate you so much, you know," Albus tried earnestly, looking at his brother. He failed and slouched.

James grinned, throwing an arm over Albus' shoulders. "Aw, I love you too, Al!"

"I'm not knowing you," Victoire said, meaning it. "I don't 'ave to live in the same 'ouse as you, I'm glad."

"Oh!" Cried Rose, jumping to her feet. "Look, we're almost there!"

Albus groaned quietly to himself. Hufflepuff was looking to be a better choice than Slytherin now, and he didn't think he'd mind Hufflepuff at all. If he could live past this night without much embarrassment then he was sure that he could handle the rest of the year, he decided as he shrugged off James.