The following morning found Rowan sucking on a cough drop before breakfast as her throat was quite tender that morning. Waiting in the common room area to her surprise, Regulus was the first one up. Emerging with the fluffy purring form of Alchemy, Regulus flushes as he hastily explains himself. "It wasn't me this time! He just showed up in my bed last night!"
"Trust me, Alchemy does exactly what he wants too much to the chagrin of others," Rowan drily said as she eyed the purring cat. Regulus carefully places the purring Alchemy onto the floor, who rubs gently against Regulus's leg, before trotting up to the girl's dorms where a warm bed was surely waiting for him.
"You could always ask for a cat, either for Christmas or for your own birthday, Regulus," Rowan suggested as she rose to her feet.
Regulus regretfully shakes his head. "Even if my parents did consent to say, yes, I don't my cat would be safe around some of my extended family members," Regulus confessed.
"Well, there's always a kneazle," Rowan suggested as they left the common room.
Regulus giggles and says, "Sirius would really hate me then."
"Well, it's always an option," Rowan snickered as they made their way to the Great Hall.
The Great Hall is mostly empty as only the earliest of risers are already at breakfast. The two of them take a seat as Rowan digs into a plate of cinnamon French toast and strawberry crepes with whipped cream. Happily eating the sweet treat, Rowan fails to notice Regulus periodically glancing over that the Gryffindor table. It wasn't that she halfway through that she noticed the periodic glances.
"What's wrong?" Rowan swallowed another bite.
Regulus sheepishly glances away and says, "I was just waiting to see what Sirius would do."
"Ah, well, knowing him, I think it'll be a few more days, before he gets the guts to apologize," Rowan frankly murmured as she took another bite. Regulus nods his head in understanding, but that still does little to stop his periodic glancing.
By the time, the half of Slytherin arrives Rowan was on her third plate. Watching her eat, Regulus sickly says, "That's your third plate, aren't you full, Rowan?"
Severus snorts with a mouthful of strawberry crepes. Licking the sweet cream off his lips, Severus says, "Rowan has a pit for a stomach."
"Says you," Rowan said with a mouthful of food. "If I recall correctly you and Terry currently hold the record for finishing six plates in one sitting."
"Six?" Regulus whispered as his face gained a tinge of green. Suddenly feeling sick, Regulus turns to peek at the Gryffindor table to see his rather gloomy faced older brother picking at his food. Regulus is momentarily distracted as he hears the flapping of wings overhead and gapes a little in awe at the sight of hundreds of owls fluttering overhead.
Suddenly, the Great Hall grows silent as a single owl flutters with a red envelope. The rest of the students glance up in confusion at the silence as they too become glued to the flight of the owl. Soft whispers sprout as they discuss and pray that the Howler is not for them. Slowly circling, the Gryffindor table the rest of the house table members sigh in relief as they discuss which unfortunate Gryffindor had already garnered the wrath of their parents.
The Gryffindor table pales until the owl calmly drops the letter neatly in front of the pale-faced Sirius Black, before flying away. The Great Hall bursts into whispers as they all gaze in expectation waiting for Sirius Black's reaction. James pats Sirius on the back in comfort and motions for Sirius to open the envelope. With dread, Sirius grabs the Howler which had begun to smoke the corners.
Rowan and the rest of the students except for 1st years and some of the muggleborn wizards and witches stuff their fingers into their ears. A dinosaur-like roar exploded and filled the huge hall, shaking the dust from the very ceiling. "Sirius Black, WHAT WERE YOU THINKING?! ARGUING WITH A YOUNG LADY FROM SLYTHERIN IN PUBLIC?!"
Sirius winces at the jab as he tries not to quiver. "BUT EVEN WORSE DENOUCNING SLYTHERIN! THESE ARE NOT THE VALUES YOU HAVE BEEN TAUGHT, YOUNG MAN! YOU ARE GROUNDED!" Sirius lets out a gasp of shock at the pronounced words. "PROFESSOR MCGONAGALL, HEAD OF GRYFFINDOR HAS BEEN INFORMED! YOU ARE TO BE FORBIDDEN FROM PARTICIPATING IN THE QUIDDITCH TRYOUTS!"
Sirius all but wilts as the pronounced punishment as he had been looking forward to the Quidditch tryouts all summer long. "THIS IS NOT OVER YOUNG MAN! ONE MORE INCIDENT LIKE THIS AND YOUR FATHER WILL BE TRANSFERRING YOU OVER TO DRUMSTRANG!" Sirius lets out a horrified gasp as the letter burst into flames before curling into ash. Sirius all but hid his head in his arms as James tried to comfort Sirius.
With ears ringing, everyone unplugged their ears as a burst of noise filled the Great Hall. Some laughed, but mostly others babbled about the letter or resumed their prior conversations. "He deserved it," Severus ruthlessly said as the others nod their heads in agreement.
Regulus gulps rather queasily, "I hope mother does not make that a habit."
Everyone snorts at the comment as Rowan says, "Better finish up, we've got potions and charms next. Plus, those of us taking any other extra-curricular classes."
"Well, I guess it's our turn to take Regulus and the rest of the 1st year brats," Silvia said causing Regulus to snort at her. Silvia flashes back a wolfish smile causing Regulus to solemnly stare back at his plate. Silvia flashes another grin, before wiping her plate clean.
Bethanie merely shakes her head and sighs as Tiffany pulls out a small pocket mirror and finishes smoothing out her hair. A girl always had to look her best or at least that's what Tiffany had always been taught. And she wasn't one to fight against her fate.