The blond boy grimaced but kept his composure as well as he could and walked to the front of the queue, all bravado, nothing of bravery. As he was passing by, he blinked an eye to the Tyrell girl and she smiled back. Thoros could notice the disdain and contempt in the smile, but the boy only saw what he wanted to see: devotion. Such a fool. I bet I'm going to enjoy this. I'm sure there will appear some kind of monster. He had to leave Care of Magical Creatures and choose another elective subject because he had no guts to even get close to some of them. Or perhaps he'll see himself as a beggar in ragged clothes! Thoros moved away to let Joffrey face the boggart and the non-being started changing.

That time there was no woman, no beggar Joff and no human at all. Sudden gasps spread across the classroom when the huge, grey werewolf appeared and Thoros could swear that Robb's name was mentioned by someone - Jon or Theon, of that he wasn't sure. Could well be but for the fact that the beast had two Lannister heads: one was Tywin's and the other was Tyrion's and Thoros had to use every bit of his willpower to avoid bursting into laughter. Joffrey looked terrified; his face had lost its colour and he was babbling, unable to say the single word. Four threatening eyes fixed upon him and two mouths showed their teeth as if they wanted to devour him alive and the young Baratheon panicked. The wand dropped from his trembling hand and he fell on his own back while trying to recoil. He was screaming hysterically, unable to stand up. Mischievously, Thoros let the moment linger before making a movement; he was enjoying the scene too much and knew that most of the group was so. However, the weird beast was going to jump over Joffrey, and Thoros would never allow one of his pupils get hurt without helping them. Thus, he ran and said the incantation and poor Beric Dondarrion made his appearance once again. Forgive me for what I did to you, my friend! I hope your soul found peace at last. The Lord of Light bless you! He knew for certain that night would be truly dark and full of horrors and nightmares for him and he would be praying for redemption all night long.

"Well, Joffrey, I expect you to have learnt something from this experience. It wasn't as easy as you presumed, was it?" the adult said as he helped the boy to stand up.

Joffrey looked daggers at him and went back to his former place in the classroom, still shuddering frantically. He will complain to his family, no doubt, and his mother will get really angry. That Cersei had been spoiling his child so much, as if he were the greatest wizard of all time and deserved everyone else's submission. She had delayed his entering their school for two years because she had decided him to be taught at home by private teachers. Definitely, they had failed in making him the greatest wizard in the world, as the rest of the students were reminding him of.

"Professor Tyrion? Seriously? It seems I'm not the only one with family issues," said Jon.

"You weren't even able to cast the spell! You are nothing but a braggart and know nothing, pureblood !" Ygritte screamed.

"Robb will be delighted to know about this little show. Surely I will make him know," Theon mocked at him.

"Blood of the craven!", Daenerys spat the words with disgust. Her family held a grudge against Joffrey's, for his uncle had given Dany's father to the Dementors and his father had tried to get her brother Rhaegar sacked from the Ministry of Magic. It was true that Aerys had embraced the Dark Arts after becoming insane and he had been on the verge of destroying the whole country, but Rhaegar was an upright and reliable Minister, supported by his family-in-law, the Martells. They all were powerful families that were still playing a game of seats in the Ministry. Useless struggles! Instead of worrying about what really matters, the real danger. He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named, R'hllor's enemy.

For once in his life, the spoilt brat didn't reply and stayed behind, humiliated. Thoros almost felt pity for him. Almost.

Anyway, the students' failure was not what Thoros had planned for that lesson. He wondered what the reason for it was -whether he had overestimated the teenagers' skills or had underestimated their burden of fears. Nonetheless, the general mood seemed more relaxed and he considered a bonus to motivate them.

"Maybe I have pushed you a little further to start practising this particular theory, but I'm still sure that some of you can pass this test. Besides, the ones who can will receive 3 bonus points for their house. So, do we have another courageous volunteer?"

There was some hesitation here and there and some of them seemed to be thinking about it when an unexpected one staggered along.

"Samwell? Thank you very much," the teacher said.

"Well! I'm not... I do not..." the boy stammered, confused.

"C'mon! We do need the points!" said Ygritte. In fact, she had been the one who had given Sam a violent thrust to volunteer.

"But...I, I..."

" I trust you, Sam. You are a brave guy and you're smart!" Gilly encouraged him.

Isn't she adorable? Nonetheless, her words made Sam make his mind and take his wand with resolution. Teenagers.

"Alright, Sam. Be prepared!" Thoros told him.

And the boggart changed.

Firstly, it took Samwell's father looks but the vision was a little blurred. Before the image became clear, it shifted into a faceless woman dressed in fancy clothes. Immediately, it became a corpse and then a wolfish monster and then a giant spider and then...

For R'hllor's sake! Is there anything in this world he's not afraid of?

Everybody else was silent, too astonished to say a word or make a jape. To Sam's credit, it had to be pointed out that he didn't make a scene like Joff had made before. He just froze, eyes and mouth wide open, the useless wand still in his hand. Thoros tried to take advantage of the situation.

"Well, this could be used in your favour. Its shape is so unstable that it's almost as if the boggart had to confront a group of people. It will be weak! Say the charm!"

It was no use. Sam stayed motionless and mute and the adult saved the day again. I'm going to vomit if I see Beric like that just once more!

Sam finally moved, resigned. Gilly comforted him with reassuring sentences -"You were intelligent, you tricked it."

Suddenly, Thoros felt very tired and thought that the lesson would rather be over but before he could tell his students, an actual volunteer gave a step forward.

" You losers! It's time for a grown man to teach you something," Theon said.