La! What a day! I left the Tower this afternoon to escape the tension and squabbling, and I returned this evening a changed woman! I caught everyone completely off-guard, prancing in here while they're all going mad with studies, and when last they saw me, I was storming out of the room, kitten in arms, cursing in Greek. It was rather amusing to watch their reactions when I got back, really. Lilian thinks I've gone bats. I flounced into the room and kissed her on the cheek when I got in -- which, considering she isn't speaking to me, confused her, I think.
Mmm... Cooper... I think I rather startled him, throwing myself at him like that. Still, he didn't seem to mind. At all. And it needed to be done.
What a perfectly glorious way to spend a chilly winter afternoon... we eventually just settled down by a roaring fire, and it was... lovely. It felt natural and comfortable and... we fit. I am so deliriously happy.
Oh, hellfire and damnation. I'm going to have to tell Richard, aren't I? Blast it...
oh, well, he can't very well object, look what he's dating.
Niamh is hiding under my pillow. I think she's upset we were out in the cold for so long. Sorry, Niamh.
Oh! Got a letter from Mum this morning. Hehe... had forgotten in all the... excitement.
I wouldn't fret too much. Richard has a good head on his shoulders -- you know that. Yes, I know about Del. Not just from you and Lilian, either. I've heard some other girls -- and a few boys -- sniping about her. If she's really such a harpy, Richard will see through that soon enough, and you and I will just have to trust him to make the right decision.
And, if that doesn't work, you'd be amazed what a good piperlingua can do to make a boy see reason. But you didn't hear that from me.
Will write Mama back later... and I've decided writing Richard back is pointless, seeing as I'm going to go find him tomorrow.
Hehe... Rosemary's just come in and looks like she can't decide whether she wants to ask me what's going on or go on ignoring me like Lilian is trying very hard to do.
Dear Mama --
That little Montreve brat is at it again. But this time she's not set her putrid sights on some unattainable Adonis. I'm not one for gossip, Mama, you know that -- that's Lilian's sphere of influence, really -- and so I usually don't care, particularly when it's just a sullen fourth-year dangling after an older boy who's really quite happy with his lot in life. I generally wouldn't give two Knuts. But this is different.
Mama, she's set her cap for our Richard.
I really don't know what to do. I don't want to look like a bitch by denouncing her or anything, but I can't just let this happen. Poor Richard is already half out of his mind about various things. Personally, I blame his mother.
I really think I need to have a talk with him. I do not have a good feeling about Mlle Montreve at all. You know, Mama -- you probably hear more stories than I do. She's an absolute harpy. Richard's entirely too good from her.
In other news... Lilian's giving me the silent treatment because I snapped at her earlier. I had to mediate a situation today in which Richard and Tanzy made each other cry... and on top of all of that, Snape gave me detention. Again. (Yes, Mama, I know, I should just keep my mouth shut in his class, but he does make it awfully hard).
Your loving daughter,
Mercy heavens, I'm exhausted. Rosemary's already glaring at me... I swear I'm going to bed just as soon as I've finished writing, honestly.
Well, the dance was certainly more... eventful... than I was expecting. First off, it is worthy to note that I did not spend the entire evening sitting on the sidelines. Nor did Tanzy throw one of her boys my way. No, I managed to attract a boy's attention all on my own. Alright, he tripped over me while I was foolishly blocking the path by the buffet tables, but that bit isn't important. His name's Cooper, he's a sixth year Hufflepuff, a musician, he kept making me turn all shades of pink, and he's just darling. We talked. We danced. It was lovely.
Right up until the Dementors decided to crash the party. I only got a glimpse -- they were in the garden. Julia shouted in to warn everyone, the teachers swarmed out there... and I made a complete prat of myself by nearly having a panic attack. If Cooper hadn't grabbed my arm, I'd probably still be standing there, deer-in-headlights-style. At least I didn't faint; that would've been dreadfully embarassing. At any rate, Cooper led me out of there and I eventually came back to my senses, and he walked me to the tower and made me smile and kissed my cheek, and d'you know, for a moment it was like those bloody Dementors hadn't shown up at all. It was... happy.
Of course, I'd barely got into the Common Room before Lilian was squealing at me. "Where have you been?! What were you doing?! And who was that boy you were dancing with?!" She's still squawking something at me, but I stopped paying attention a few minutes ago. I'm seeing how long it will take her to notice.
I should send an owl to Mum... doubtless she'll hear about the Dementors and be worried about me. I'll pen a note to her in the morning.
Niamh is pouting because she got ignored all night. Poor baby.
Oh. Lilian noticed. Or at least she stopped talking. She's singing now. I wish she'd go back to interrogating me.
Damn. Damn damn damn. Dance is tonight. Can't find my hairbrush... Niamh chewed up one of my clips... Rosemary and Lilian are squabbling about something, which wouldn't be unusual or bad except that one of them's got my lipstick and I don't know which one and I can't ask them because they're in the middle of something, and you know, I'm really wishing I had better shoes because these pinch something terrible, and where's my other earring? because these don't match at all, and...
Okay, Alyx, chill.
Alyx's note to self for the day: air is my friend.
Ahh! Just flopped on bed, ready to admit defeat, curl up in a ball, and spend night cuddling with kitty instead. And I sat on my hairbrush.
I have a dress. Mum sent it over.
It's pink. Really rather inexplicably. I'm not one of those girls who's violently opposed to the color... but I'm not a big fan, either. Mum said she thought it would suit my hair and complexion, and I suppose she's right. No matter what anyone may say, a blonde with peaches-and-cream coloration will always look good in pink. And at least it isn't bubblegum or carnation... more towards mauve, actually. And it's a very nice cut... not too frilly or girly, but very sophisticated. I really rather like it.
But it's still pink.
And apparently Tanzy Morrow has a "special feeling" about me and the ball. I was afraid to ask. The look in her eyes was pointing in a rather mischievous direction (and I've seen that look on Lilian enough times to recognize it on anyone else). Well... we'll see what happens, I suppose. Personally, I'm just as happy sitting on the side. Okay, that's a lie, I'd rather be dancing, but... it's not so bad by the wall. Fascinating to watch everyone else interacting. And a writer has to know about that sort of thing.
Bother. Lilian's trying once again to convince Rosemary that tangerine orange is "so her color." I think I need to intervene...
Mum's response to my owl: "Be yourself, dear. You're lovely and everyone will want to take you to the dance. And if they don't, then you didn't want to go with them anyway."
...thank you, Mum, you're such a big help. In that not at all sort of way.
Another day, another utter lack of a date. Ah, well. I'm trying not to think about it (it isn't working terribly well). Looking ahead to the match against Gryffindor. I probably won't get to play, our full team's in perfect health, damn them (kidding, guys!), but it should still be exciting. Normally, I'd be afraid they'd slaughter us, because of the Boy Wonder's flying skills, but everyone knows that Potter's on one of the school brooms. Ha! Cho will be flying circles around him. And our Chasers are the fastest in school. Even without me. ;) So if I can just get past the dance without hyperventilating too many times, I have that to look forward to. Oh! And there's a Hogsmeade trip the day after the dance! Which means I'll get to see Mum! The best thing about her having a shop in Hogsmeade is that I get to see her more often than anyone else gets to see his or her parents. Which wouldn't be that great if I didn't have the best Mum ever. Maybe I should send her an owl and ask what to do about this dance thing. Apparently she was dreadfully popular when she was here. Maybe she'll have some advice.
Right. A decision! Off to the Owlery it is, then.
Valentine's Dance. Frankly, the thought makes me want to crawl under my bed and stay there until March. Not that I don't like dances! I love them, really. But, really... well, going doe was acceptable when I was younger, but...
Professor Flitwick told us that the dance was supposed to be a bit of a stress reliever -- what with the Dementors rampaging and the fact that we're all convinced Sirius Black is going to murder us in our sleep -- but... stress reliever?! I'm going to hyperventilate just thinking about it... even Rosemary already has a date. Some fourth-year Hufflepuff, I don't remember his name. And I saw Aileen asking Kelby in the common room earlier. Lilian told me that Rosa's going with Aileen's older brother, and then proceeded to inform me that she's going after that Caio Ballesteros -- her and about twenty other girls, way I hear it.
There's been a lot of that going on... people getting cornered and asked to the dance... or boasting about their catches... all flitting around happily... Me? Curled up in a big armchair in the corner with my notebook, as usual. I've just started going silly around any guy I know... giggling pointlessly and turning all shades of pink and I'm not even sure why. I keep almost asking different guys, just to have someone I vaguely know to go with, but then I turn a very bright hue and can't go through with it. I'm going to have a fainting fit, I swear, this is all just too much on my nerves!
Okay, Alyx, deep calming breaths, deep calming breaths. I suppose there's nothing to do but pray that someone asks me... and prepare to put up a brave and confident front if/when no one does.
Well, Quidditch was certainly exciting. First off, Slytherin buggered out because that pansy Malfoy is still swooning like a girl. So Hufflepuff played instead, and of course we all thought Gryffindor would just flatten them. And they probably would have, too, except Potter fell off his broom! Wasn't really the poor boy's fault, of course. These Dementors showed up, and from what I've heard, Potter doesn't react well to those things. Well, I mean, no one reacts well to Dementors, but he seems to take their presence harder than the rest of us. He was going after the Snitch, and he saw them and fell off his broom. Honestly, from where we were all sitting, we thought he was dead! I'm glad he's not, that would be dreadful. Diggory caught the Snitch right after, and then tried to claim it wasn't a fair win. What a gentleman. I can see why so many of the girls just drool over him. I probably would, too, but he's not really my type. Anyway. Hufflepuff won, and I've never seen Oliver Wood so depressed, which is really a shame, he's far too good-looking to have defeat etched on his features. Current rumors are that Potter's alright, no permanent damage done, except, of course, that the Gryffindor team is going to have to work their collective asses off in order to have any hope at the Cup. So much the better for us, I say! We might stand a chance now! And now all the Gryffindors are rooting for us to slaughter Hufflepuff next round because it'll improve their standing. Happy to oblige, boys!
And the weather was dreadful. We all went out anyway, because who would miss Quidditch on account of a little rain? Except it wasn't a little rain. It was a lot of rain. And wind. And it was just bloody miserable. And now I think I've caught cold. I've been sniffling and sneezing all day. I just hope it's not pnuemonia, that would really put a damper on things. Rosemary's after me to go to Madam Pomfrey and get a Pepperup Potion, but honestly, I've no desire to have steam pouring out my ears for the rest of the afternoon. No need to look like a cartoon character who's swallowed too many hot peppers just on account of a case of the sniffles. So this has turned into a great game to try and keep any of the teachers from hearing me sneeze or cough, because if one of them catches me, it's off to Madam Pomfrey for sure. It's really rather hard to sneeze quietly. The coughing I can manage, but sneezing's difficult. Professor Flitwick nearly sent me to Madam Pomfrey earlier, but I managed to convince him I'd just inhaled an awful lot of dust. Even as I write this (and sneeze loudly in the comfort of my dorm room), Rosemary's glaring at me from above her book. I promised her if it does turn out to be pnuemonia, I'll go to the hospital wing, but I'm not going for anything less.
Defence Against the Dark Arts today was... strange. Poor Professor Lupin isn't looking well at all. He's all pale and gaunt -- well, he's always pale and gaunt, strike that. But he looks worse off than normal. Maybe it was Halloween. The Black incident gave everyone a fright. Rosemary's still shaking.
Side note: Never mention Professor Lupin in front of Snape if it can be helped. Snape really seems to hate him. Probably just jealous he didn't get the Dark Arts job again. (Serves him right, too, last thing we need is a bloody sadist in the position). He was really in a dreadful mood today, too. Worse than usual, I mean. Must be a Slytherin thing -- everyone of them I saw today was hissing. At each other, no less! Better than them baring their fangs at the rest of us... I wonder what's got them all riled up.
Speaking of Slytherin... I overheard a couple of sixth-years saying the Weasley twins have a betting ring going. I think I may find out if that's true and lay some Sickles on Gryffindor for the match (only a few, mind you, I spent all my pocket money in Hogsmeade). Of course, everyone's going to be doing the same. The only people betting on Slytherin will be the Slytherins. (memo to me: when telling Mum about the first Quidditch match, leave out any gambling I may or may not do).
In other news, Naimh has reached a new level of cowardice. The little thing actually fled from a shadow today. Honestly. She's such a sweetheart, and I love her dearly, but she's got about as much of a spine as Rosemary. The way she jumped, you'd've thought she'd seen Sirius Black! Not that she would have known who... oh, well, it started out as a good analogy. But it was just a bird flying past the window. She's such a coward, but she's the cutest coward ever...
Player Contact: Cass13MX@aol.com
Character Name: Alexandra Maeve Bradford, called Alyx
Race: Human -- half Muggle, half witch (her mother insists there's faery blood in her background, but no one's been able to prove it so far)
Birthdate: August 18
Hair: curly, blond
Weight: 132 lbs.
Skin color: alabaster
Brietta Leila Ailerny -- mother, 40 years old, a pureblood half-Irish witch. Brietta was a Gryffindor when she was at Hogwarts, known for a sharp tongue and a fiery temper. She's mellowed some since then, but is still a very high-spirited and active woman. She runs a small chain of stores, Ailerny Accessories, selling to both wizards and Muggles. Her wizarding stores sell protective amulets and other enchanted jewelry, while her Muggle-oriented stores are just normal jewelry stores. Brietta has been in trouble with the Ministry more than once when her orders got mixed up and enchanted items accidentally wound up in Muggle hands. She lives in an apartment above her store in Hogsmeade.
Philip Garret Bradford, baronet -- father, 45, Muggle. Philip divorced Brietta not long after Alyx was born, when he learned his wife was a witch. It simply wasn't good for public image. He retained custody of Alyx until her eleventh birthday. A stuffy, orderly man without an imaginative bone in his body.
Brendan, William, Charlotte, and Samantha Bradford -- 20, 18, 13, and 9, respectively. Alyx's half-siblings from her father's other marriages. Nondescript Muggles who were glad to renounce their "strange" sister. Samantha was the only one who showed some promise of having an open mind, but her elder siblings do their best to keep that in check.
Lorcan Conleth and Aileen Maille Ailerny -- Alyx's uncle and aunt, 35 and 32 respectively. Lorcan is Brietta's younger brother. They have no children, but dote on Alyx excessively. Lorcan was a Gryffindor and now works at the Ministry, in the Department of Accidental Magic Reversal. Aileen was a Ravenclaw and now works with Brietta, managing the shop in Diagon Alley.
House/Year: Ravenclaw 5th year
Favorite/Best Class: Charms is her favorite, even if it's not her best -- that would be Transfiguration, which only isn't her favorite because McGonagall is so strict!
Wand Type/Familiar Type: Wand -- unicorn hair, willow, ten inch. Familiar -- Niamh, a calico cat who quite literally gets scared by her own shadow.
Physical Description: Tall and lithely built. Her golden hair falls to her waist in spirals more than traditional curls. Her jade eyes have a sort of haunting, feline look to them. Her skin is alabaster by nature but tans easily. She looks older than she is and easily passes for eighteen. Generally wears her hair down or in one long braid. Is never without a golden necklace with her maternal grandmother's wedding ring strung on it. Also frequently wears three pairs of hoop earrings, and a ruby stud in her upper right ear.
Personality: Alyx is generally a bubbly person, displaying Ravenclaw inquisitiveness, but also the more Gryffindor traits of defiance and brashness. She has a very active imagination and a highly curious nature -- she justifies both as manifestations as the pursuit of knowledge, "which just makes me more Ravenclaw than ever." Alyx also talks a lot, with a tendency to babble, and her charisma quotient is through the roof, which makes up for the fact that despite being very intelligent, she hasn't got a dash of common sense. She's one of the few Ravenclaws you'll ever catch daydreaming in class -- her mind is so active she often has trouble keeping it focused on one topic for very long. But she's also very quick-witted, and can talk herself out of almost any situation, conflicts with certain Potions masters aside. Alyx has an appaling habit of getting detention, usually from Snape, as she doesn't always know when to keep her mouth shut -- Alyx generally says what's on her mind, and does so forcefully.
She's extremely high-spirited -- and a little high-strung, prone to panicking and making a scene about things. She's even fainted from hyperventilation a couple of times. Years of being taunted and belittled by her siblings have made her quite unused to compliments, and she can get a little silly when she recieves them. It also made her fiercely protective of her friends, and anyone who decides to tease them or otherwise be cruel can look forward to an eloquent tongue-lashing from Alyx.
Other Notes: Alyx is alternate Chaser for the Ravenclaw Quidditch team. She's a Holyhead Harpies fan. Her mother told her she could change her last name, but she kept her father's "because Alyx Ailerny sounded daft." She's a gifted writer, a talent she wants to pursue after finishing school. Alyx almost always carries with her a notebook and pen to jot down story ideas.
Short Personal Background: Alyx's parents divorced when she was a baby, after her father found out that her mother was a witch. Alyx's father won the custody battle, and she was raised hardly seeing her mother and not knowing about her magical heritage. When she was eleven and recieved her letter, her mother came to claim her and told her everything. (Her father gladly relinquished her to avoid the stigma of having such odd offspring). Alyx was perfectly ecstatic to discover she had special talents, and enjoys school with the sort of zeal only a Ravenclaw can, excelling in all of her classes except occasionally Potions ("bloody unfair") and Herbology, which she just can't muster the interest for. Since coming to Hogwarts, she's spent all school holidays with her mother and maternal relatives. She's only seen her father and half-siblings once in all that time, and got in trouble for slipping her sisters Chocolate Frogs and Every Flavour Beans.
As I'm always forgetting what I want to tell Mum by the time I see her, she suggested I start keeping a diary to record the events of my life (exciting or otherwise). I can see the merits. It's been proven that writing things down increases the probability that the memory will be triggered later. So here goes nothing.
I think I may have picked a bad day to start a journal. The only thing that happened today was Ibid arriving with the letter from Mum and this book to write in. Unless, of course, you count Rosemary fainting during DADA. Again. I keep trying to explain to her that at least we're doing something this year. But Rosemary just gets all pale and looks like she's going to pass out. I just hope the girl never has to face any Dark creatures, because she wouldn't last five milliseconds. I love her dearly but...
Oh, dear. Little Aileen just raced into the common room, giggling manically. It's a good thing she's so cute, or someone might've killed her by now. Or at least turned her into a particularly spunky throw rug.
Rosemary's giving me her "if-you-don't-go-to-bed-now-you'll-regret-it" look. So I suppose I'll humor her. More later (when I'll hopefully have more to write).