Finally, the winter term ended, and it came time for everyone to return home for the winter break. With great relief and a fair bit of perverse pleasure, Rowan watched the nave 1st years be taken away by Hagrid to cross the freezing lake on tiny flimsy wooden boats. Almost whistling in a dark Grinch-like fashion, Rowan happily waited at the front entrance with Terry and Severus for the carriages with the rest of the school.
Not long after an empty carriage came into view pulled by the skeleton, reptilian, flying horse steed thing, a Thestral. With a gentle stop, the carriage came to a stop as Terry climbed in first followed by a grumbling Severus about why Lily should sit with them and not the other Gryffindor girls. And last but not least Rowan climbed in and shut the door behind her.
With a gentle roll, the carriage began to move forward on the muddy track as wisps of snow began to fall from the thick gray sky. Wrinkling her nose, Rowan mutters under her breath, "It still smells of mold and straw." Severus and Terry ignore Rowan's complaints as per usual and instead excitably point out various features on their way. However, in Rowan's personal opinion there wasn't much scenery to look at beyond snow and trees.
Finally, the carriages roll to a stop on the same bare track as before. Carefully jumping down in the mud and snow, the trio made their way up the already muddy trail towards the Hogsmeade platform up ahead. Suddenly, a barrage of snow hits the trio right in the back.
Rowan immediately whirls around as do Terry and Severus to only spot the annoying Gryffindor foursome grinning with fists full of snowball. "I suggest a tactical retreat," Rowan firmly said, before bolting away without looking back to see what had befallen Terry or Severus. After all, Ladies First.
Thankfully, Rowan wasn't ever called slow and unlike Terry and Severus she at least tried to fit in a fifteen-minute fast-paced walk every day for exercise. Managing to escape the pelt of snowballs, Rowan made it back to the platform, before searching for the compartment where to sit and relax. With some vile grinch glee, she watched the shivering 1st years with blue lips arrive with Hagrid in tow.
The wonderful dark moment is broken by Terry and Severus as they slam the compartment door open. "You! You!" Neither Terry nor Severus can finish their sentence as they can only coldly point at her in their outmost fury.
"We Slytherins can be brave, yes, but not foolhardy," Rowan proudly said as she waved her wand to cast a drying spell on them. And though the water instantly vanished, they still were left feeling a bit damp and cold.
Still pointing her wand at them, Rowan says, "Feverns Aeris," as the hot-air charm begins to blow hot air from the tip of her wand.
"You're still not forgiven," Severus growled as Terry turned his face away from her. Needless to say, Rowan largely ignored by the boys for the rest of the trip, which served her just fine as she was able to nap quite blissfully.
With a shrill whistle, the Hogwarts Express pulls to a stop as the snow whirls all around. The students quickly pour out and gather their neatly placed trunks placed in alphabetical order on Platform 9 's. "I'll see you later," Terry called out as he ran off towards a large light-haired family including that of his parents, six old sisters and their husbands and children.
Seeing Terry suddenly engulfed by some many family members, Severus and Rowan merely stare as Severus says, "Remind to never have that many children."
"As if you'll ever manage to reproduce," Rowan wickedly teased back.
Severus chokes and turns a splotchy red but doesn't dare say anything else as he knew he'd unable to beat his sister for the moment. From his cage, Owyn hoots as the nearby greeting of Nibby can be heard causing Severus to whirl around and spot Lily. Severus happily waves as Lily does the same, before running off towards her family, where a grumpy light-haired girl with pale eyes awaits the Evans couple, Petunia Evans.
"She's still unpleasant as ever, I see," Rowan muttered under her breath, but not soft enough for Severus not to overhear.
"Yes, well, I do believe the feeling is mutual in that regard," Severus drily observed.
"C'mon," Rowan said as she none too gently prods him in the direction of their grandfather.
The tall, slender figure of Reginald Prince elegantly waits some feet away from the Evans couple for privacy. Reginald's lips twitch into a small smile as he leans with his arms wide for a hug. Pulling Rowan and Severus both into his embrace he chuckles and says, "Ye gods and little fishes, the two of you have grown again!" The twins glare up at him as Reginald gives them one last squeeze before releasing them.
"Well, we best be going now," Reginald said as nodded at the Evans couple who were departing from the platform with Lily and a rather sullen faced Petunia in tow.
"Ah, Prince leaving so soon?" A masculine voice drawled from behind.
A flash of coldness can be seen in Reginald's eyes as he turns to face the speaker of the voice. "Yes, I must get the children home as my wife and sister are expecting us," Reginald most politely replied without a trace of his dislike heard in his voice.
The handsome dark-haired man with elegant features flickers his gray eyes over the Prince twins. "Yes, well, I'm sure they can manage a minute or two," Orion Black said as he seemingly brushed a snowflake from his fine cloak.
From behind Orion the sharp features of Walburga Black can be seen as she keeps a hand on your youngest son's shoulder, Regulus Black as her eldest, Sirius trails behind her. Pursing her lips in distaste, Walburga's eyes flicker over the half-blood Prince grandchildren. Keeping a sneer from her face, Walburga's gray eyes flicker towards her husband as if warning him to be quick about it.
"And what is that you wish to know, Black?" Said, Reginald barley keeping the contempt out of his voice.
Orion's face tightens as he asks, "I can correctly assume you are to be in attendance for my cousin's betrothal?"
"I shall be present with my wife or that of my sister, but I hardly think that is any of your concern, Black."
"It is of my concern as it is family. But I suppose you wouldn't know anything about that, would you now, Prince? "The air turns that much chillier between the two men as Regulus peeks in bewilderment at his father, while Sirius openly gawks in awe of his hero.
Reginald's eyes flicker for a moment, before drawing himself back. "If I have satisfied your ill-natured curiosity, Black, I shall be taking my leave."
"Wait!" Orion said through gritted teeth as he saw older Prince turn to leave.
Reginald pauses and arches an eyebrow as he turns a now annoyed gaze back onto Black. "I grow weary of these tiresome games, Black. Quickly state your intent."
"I would request that the younger Prince, Georgine be in attendance," Orion hastily proposed.
Reginald's eyes fill with disbelief. "My sister?"
"Yes, Georgine Prince."
"And why is that?"
"There are old acquaintances who wish to meet with her again."
"I can guarantee nothing, you understand, Black?" Reginald slowly said. "But nevertheless, I will convey the message."
Orion nods his head in mute understanding, before whirling around as his cape snaps in the cold breeze behind him. "We are leaving," Orion barked as Walburga cast a curious glare at the Prince family, before happily pulling her youngest son forward and pointedly ignoring her eldest trailing behind her.
"That was rather peculiar," Reginald commented as he watched the eldest son of the Black's wave at them, before running off to keep up with his family. "Well, no matter, shall we be off children?" Rowan and Severus nodded their heads, but their smiles quickly slipped away as they recalled their means of transportation. With faces already pale, they sadly follow behind their grandfather as they solemnly contemplate if they would need a bag in which to be sick in.