Veronica Kennedy

Nothing to do, nothing to lose

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She had a book in her hand, the other preoccupied with an empty spoon hovering over half-filled bowl. Her brown eyes registered the physical structure of each letter imprinted on the pages, working diligently across its width yet the same words remained foreign as she scanned them time and again. There were people around her, all seated way too close to the next on cramped benches and she shuffled further down the edge of the line. By the fifteenth minute, she had been well acquainted with her lunch neighbor's love life and the blueprint of their school’s broom closet, something that had been immensely more interesting than her neglected novel. 

 

Still, being on the same page for the elongated period must have looked suspicious. She thumbed for the next and dipped her spoon for another mouthful. 

 

It took only the third swing of her feet to realize she had new company. The soft thuds of her shoe against the solid construction of another’s shin had her head snapping up in surprise, an apology at the tip of her tongue before recognition kicked in. 

 

“Oh it’s you.” Ronnie said, almost letting slip the tinge of relief she most definitely did not feel. “If you’re looking to acquire some souls, I’m afraid I’m all out of stock today.”

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It'd been a week since the incident in which Emmett had been drugged with a sleeping drought and his unconscious body dragged into the forbidden forest, stripped of his shoes, socks, and wand, woken up to realize the betrayal. He was feeling a constant stir, a buzz under the surface of his skin, as if someone sparked him, as if one wrong movement would cause him to snap. The flame on his skin caused him to act more brooding and subdued than usual. He didn't want to deal with people, no bloody humans, so he wouldn't, for the first few days anyway.

 

He was getting bored.

 

Emmett's gaze ping-ponged around the Great Hall, intentionally avoiding certain faces and sneering at others until they set on someone.. tolerable? He wouldn't say that, but she was oddly better than most everyone else right now. He didn't even want to deal with Atlas, because although the boy was not involved, he didn't want to see the look on Atlas's face when he told him he got shown up by Isobel Blake.

 

He didn't feel the same crackle of hatred toward Ronnie, though, to his surprise. He almost dwelt on this feeling for a moment.. comfort? She was disassociated in a way.

 

Emmett had the odd, unfamiliar urge to be nice.

 

He paused, forcing himself to crack a smile at her question. "No, not today." He was still thinking. Without pause, he sidled into the small patch of space at her side so he was positioned next to her at the table, and he leaned on his fist, looking at her seriously.

 

"Veronica," Emmett enunciated. "Maybe next time." He picked up a clean fork and twirled it in his fingers. "I'm bored. Entertain me."


Edited by Emmett Blaze

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In the strangest of circumstances, Emmett had a certain charm to him that her attention seemed to gravitate towards, a paradoxical element to their briefly established dynamics she would much prefer to feign ignorance about—and in all candor, perhaps it was this inclination for oblivion that fueled the little hop of excitement when he appeared in all his broody glory while she readied herself for another round of banter.

 

Apparently, that was not on their agenda today.

 

With his attempt at a smile, Ronnie tilted her head in confusion. “You don’t have to smile if you don’t want to.” She started. “You scoffing at me like I’m the dumbest person you’ve ever met bring balance to the world.” She did not usually smile, not beyond polite exchanges anyway; Ronnie had been the perfect portrait of melancholy, her lips slightly down-turned with an ever-present crease between her brows. Yet, as she spoke those words, Ronnie let a faintly amused grin escape.

 

“Entertain you?” As abruptly as he asked, she mirrored with incredulity. “Emmett.” Mimicking all seriousness projected in his voice, the girl sighed dramatically. Her body shifted so she could face him. “I didn’t mean for you to find out this way but... I may look like the most popular kid in school—” Her soup spoon hand gestured at all the empty chairs all around them. “But I’m possibly the most boring person you’ll ever meet in your life.”

 

Still, it wasn’t like she was going to brush him off just because he had approached the wrong person to douse his boredom. Snapping her novel shut she leaned an elbow on the table, rested her chin atop it and gave the request a serious consideration.

 

“Want to make a potion that turn people into frogs?”


Edited by Veronica Kennedy

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Emmett had levels on the scale in which he critiqued others that ranged from pure, unbridled hatred to tolerance/mild irritation. There were very few people who he could tolerate, but Ronnie was someone he read as intelligent and even-keeled in a way that made him privately enjoy their quipping in speed friending and, with recent circumstances, her presence became more appealing, although this wasn't something he ever planned to admit to her.

 

In "the strangest of circumstances", then, she was also considerate. Who else would note something like that? She recognized the forced nature of his smile and released him from the burden. He felt something.. warm. His expression relaxed into a neutral position, and he nodded -- the extent of thanks she'd receive. He almost let out a genuine chuckle at her next statement. "If you insist, then, I was merely trying.. well, never-mind."

 

Veronica was pleasant to look at, he realized. Her face had a symmetry. What was it about dark hair and eyes that so enticed him?

 

He actually cracked a grin at her next statement.

 

Smart, attractive, sassy -- Ronnie was, it seemed, a triple threat. Emmett did not dwell on this, otherwise he'd have to fight the urge to terminate a potential friendship immediately.

 

"On the contrary, I think you're one of the more interesting people in this school." Not that this was a huge compliment as most people were painfully dull, but it was close. 

 

Emmett made a spasm motion to prevent his eyes from flinging wide open at her suggestion.

 

That was possible? Or was she pulling his leg? His jaw twitched.  Intrigue sparked in his brain, colluding against its walls, as possibilities reeled. He could then turn Isobel into a frog?

 

"Ronnie," he began. "Veronica. You better not be messing with me."

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Perhaps it was the rarity of the occasion that made Emmett’s grin so much more pleasing to look at, or had it been the contrast against his forced smile that made Ronnie’s widen just a tad? A sense of pride maybe, that she was capable of breaking his wall, even if it hadn’t been anything deeper than a vague crack. Ronnie didn’t mind if he smiled a little more frequently than he allowed himself to, Emmett had a nice smile to him. Strangely warm and genuine, and everything she did not know he could be.

 

Granted, she did not know much about him at all.

 

Granted, she would never tell him any of that.

 

“I am?” She might as well have written the word ‘surprised’ across her forehead with her undisguised gaping. “Uh, thanks?” Her face warmed ever so gradually, reaching from her cheeks to her ears. It had been one thing to bicker with Emmett and another to have civilised conversations—bickering with him challenged her wit and did not require emotional capacity. In fact, the less significance she held to his words, Ronnie figured, the better it would have been for the both of them. “Dude, you’re putting me out of my element.” Aware of her furious blushing, she patted her cheek with the palm of her hand, an analogy for snapping herself out of the state of fluster. “Sorry, I do a lot better trying to out-sass you than accept a compliment.” This is so embarrassing, she added with a mumble.

 

When excitement coated his next words, however, Ronnie noted that Emmett was full of surprises. She had expected him to question the practicality of her suggestion or her less than innovative choice of species to turn people into; she hadn’t expected him to be this on board with her spur-of-the-moment idea. When had she ever heard him be excited about anything? When had she really heard him talk besides that one session even?

 

“Are we on nickname basis now?” She nudged him playfully with her elbow against his own. “Oh. Oh no, have I planted an evil idea in your head?” Leaning closer, she squinted; brown eyes staring straight into Emmett’s, attempting to decode the puzzle that was his mind.

 

“I mean, if Polyjuice allowed the drinker to assume the form of another person temporarily, who was to say that with alterations, turning someone into a frog was farfetched?” She was caught in the web of her own thoughts now, leaning back to her original position with her eyes narrowing in concentration at the possibility, teeth catching her lower lip captive. Everything around her blurred out in the trance of her ponders.

 

“Or at least I suppose it’s not. I’m eleven; I don’t exactly have an extensive knowledge about potions.” A short pause. “That said, we are Ravenclaws for a reason.”

 

“Want to give it a go?”


Edited by Veronica Kennedy

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