It was incredible how many of these trophies had misspelled Benny's name. Horrific misspellings, too, as it were: not a simple "n" or "a" out of place. Like...they'd actually managed to spell out "Cadoan Berkeley" instead of "Benny Laut," which really wasn't very close at all. Mistakes, mistakes. Benny tutted disappointedly. What good was being Head Boy in one's imagination if nobody played along with your ruse?
No good at all. Rather sad, actually.
The case, in truth, was that Benny's name appeared on less than forty trophies in the entire room, which was his original goal back in his early years at school. In fact, he hadn't even made it onto ten. Hell, he'd be shocked if his name was even on a single bloody plaque. Even a medal, or a tacky plastic pin. He sighed and dug his thumbs deep into his eyes. Who said it was acceptable, memorable
, what he'd done here? What would he leave behind? Why was he suddenly cursed with a blatant and somehow physically sickening sense of nostalgia?
Benny had thought a lot since he'd arrived at school about success. Surpassing the pathetic benchmarks his grandfather and father and older brother had set before him at the school, becoming a priceless asset to the Hogwarts community, growing into some one important. Influential. His desire for triumph, prosperity, and retribution of the family name was, at one point, his most prominent attribute, and probably the very trait that led the Hat to sort him into Slytherin house seven years ago. But he'd grown lazy. The summer before Fifth Year had drained him. He still cared that he'd been denied the badge, the one thing, the tangible, manifest item of such symbolism as to forever give him proof of his familial superiority. Something he could, for lack of more elegant language, shove in the face of he failure of a father. He'd failed to prove his ascendency, and there was no one left to blame.
He was still thinking about it, he was still bitter.
He'd gone wholly unnoticed from year one, though he'd tried to draw attention any way he could. He wasn't particularly impressive at dueling, nor did he show any sort of prowess whatsoever on a broomstick. Hell, he hadn't even been able to get a real girlfriend, for Merlin's sake. Would he really have to settle for being remembered as "the guy who counted people," or "the dude with the excellent hair," or "the kid with the water balloons"?
"The one Slytherin who almost got a Prefect's badge, and then whined about it for the next two and a half years"?
What a reputation.
He hadn't done what he'd come to do, and even though he was graduating with an OWL and a NEWT under his belt, alongside some of the most wonderful people he'd ever met, some of the most amazing students this school had ever seen, some of his very closest friends and his very worst enemies, Benny Laut still felt like a failure. He'd done himself a disservice by letting go after the letdown of an empty envelope back in 2015, and he was bogged down with regret. It wouldn't get better, because he'd ruined it.
So. Here we are. I'm not going to say it feels like only yesterday that all this crap started, because it doesn't.
Seven years is a long time, and it felt like a long time, made longer by the fact that I didn't get done what I planned to while I was here.
Or maybe that made it shorter.
...nah, it was longer, because I had time to waste, and I did. Waste it, I mean. I kinda gave up on things in the end, which sucks,
because that's exactly what I came here to prove that I wouldn't do. If that makes sense. It's...weird to think my name won't even be here after I'm gone.
But really. Good times in this crumbly hellhole. I'll miss the Slytherin stands, and the food, mostly.
Ethan: I'm totally
almost sorry I kidnapped you that one time. You're still the shi best, mate.
Moss: Totally awesome, man. Shame we didn't bother hanging out much till Sixth Year, right? Would've owned this school, or something.
St. James: ...I still don't like you.
Same to you, Underwood. Cheers.
My counting duties shall be left to whomever wishes to keep the spirit of house rivalry through population superiority alive.
My cheering duties shall never be paralleled by a hundred men, so don't bother trying.
I'd like to come back in a few years, to finish what I gave up on, but I don't think they'll want me coming back in after that whole Polyjuice ordeal, so...Laut, out.
The eighteen-year-old steepled his fingers over his nose, quill still dripping freely in his hand and probably down his face. His fingernails needed to be trimmed, his hair needed to be cut. He scowled, not wanting to reread anything he'd just written. The finality of it all, of his mistakes and regrets and lost chances, was pulsing through him now, all at once. It was like letting his father win, and his brother, and his entire family tree. His ancestry had beaten him, had proved that he was no better than they were. It was like he'd kept some sick tradition alive.
It was like letting his father win the battle he didn't even know he was fighting.////emoooooo. ;_;
<333333 My eternal love to all of VH8. Love you guys, thanks for three great years.