The day that the Halloween Feast was to be held luckily fell on a Friday. They all awoke to the fragrance of pumpkins and sweets in the air. All-day long students chattered in class as the Professor's finally gave up on getting them to do much of anything. Luckily, their last class was DADA, which was always a treat with Professor Pollen.
It was a rather enjoyable lesson as Professor Pollen had brought in a glass box containing a hinkypunk, a little one-legged creature who looked as though he were made of wisps of smoke, rather frail and harmless looking.
"Don't let its innocent looks deceive you," Professor Pollen warned them as they took notes. "It lures travelers into bogs. You'll notice the lantern dangling from his hand? It hops ahead people follow the light and then ." The hinkypunk makes a horrible squelching noise against the glass as if in response.
The bell suddenly rang causing a few Slytherins to flinch as everyone eagerly gathered their things and went out the door. As they made their way down to the dungeons, Severus unhappily says, "I still need to finish that dastardly Divination tea reading. As if tea leaves could predict the future!"
"Really, I finished mine, ages ago," Terry innocently remarked as Severus gave him a glare.
"You really should have taken Arithmancy with us, Severus," Tiffany happily chimed in. "Unlike hazard guessing numbers always read true."
"I'm starting to see that now," Severus griped as he glared at Terry, who had begged him to take the class with him. He really should have stuck with his original choice.
"You're looking a bit pale, Rowan, are you alright?" Bethanie said causing the rest of them to glance over at Rowan. Sure, enough Rowan seemed to be more pale than usual as her face looked rather wane.
"I'm not feeling very well," Rowan confessed, which was not an entire lie. She had a painful cramp going on at the moment. But nothing that a nice douse of one of the potions in her trunk couldn't fix. "I don't think I'll be going to the feast."
"But it's the Halloween Feast! You'll miss all the candy and food!" Terry protested in horror.
Silvia jabbed Terry painfully in the ribs and said, "Don't worry, we'll bring you something back."
"Thanks," Rowan gratefully said as they made their way into the common room area, before heading to the girl's dorms. She was the first one into the dorms and quickly grabbed a pain potion from her trunk and gulped it down in one gulp. Hurriedly closing back up her trunk, she climbed into bed and tried to look miserable, which wasn't a great feat at all.
Seeing Rowan curled up in bed, Bethanie says, "I'll let the Prefect Pizarro know that you'll be staying behind." Bethanie went back out as Tiffany says, "I've got some sweets if you'd like some."
"I'm fine, no thank you," Rowan murmured.
Silvia mutters in sympathy, "We girls always get the short end of the stick." Rowan and Tiffany grunt in agreement as Tiffany begins to get ready as does Silvia. Not long after Bethanie returns with the tired looking Prefect Pizzaro who makes note of Rowan's condition, before rushing off onto some other task.
"Is it just me or does being a Prefect seem more like a form of cheap labor than an honor?" Rowan drily remarked out loud.
"Why?" Tiffany said with some puzzlement in her voice as she brushed her hair until it shone.
"Well, Prefect Pizarro's a 5th year and she's supposed to be studying for her O.W.L.s," Rowan slowly said. "And on top of that she still has to be in charge of all the students in the house not to mention helping or aiding them as needed. When will she ever have the time to study?"
There is a lapse of silent as Tiffany whispers, "I hadn't thought of it like that." But with a shrug she says, "Does it really matter? There's not much of a chance of any of us becoming a Prefect."
"I don't know," Silvia slowly said as she sat on her bed already to go. "I'd say that Rowan might have a pretty good chance."
Rowan makes an unpleasant expression and says, "Merlin so help me, I'll kill Slughorn if it comes to that."
"Well, I wouldn't mind it all," Bethanie explained as everyone gave her similar expressions.
"If it was you, I'd think the younger things would be rather lucky to have you," Silvia said with a smile as Tiffany and Rowan both gestured in agreement.
"Thank you," Bethanie said with a smile. "I'd be honored, but if it went to someone else, I wouldn't mind that very much at all.
The four of them chatted for some time more, before the girls finally got up to go. Making sure Rowan was comfortable, Bethanie patiently tucked her in, before saying, "We'll return early if we can."
"Don't!" Rowan protested a little too loudly and instantly rectified the statement. "What I mean to say, I'll probably be asleep by then. Just enjoy yourselves, it's not like I'm going to be going anywhere."
"All right then," Bethanie said. "But I'll make sure to bring you something back."
"Me too," Tiffany piped in as Silvia cheerfully added, "Me three." Laughing the three girls left as Rowan waited for the dorms to slowly empty and fall silent.
Certain that the girl dorms were empty Rowan quickly got out of bed feeling that much better thanks to the pain potion. With a flick of her wand, the pillow transformed into an image of herself as she tossed the covers over the still form only leaving the back of the head poking out. Pulling the bed curtains shut, she pops open her trunk and gets out her carefully already prepared pouch. Giving herself a quick glance, she nodded in satisfaction and quickly eats a chocolate bar for energy and to calm her rumbling stomach.
Soundlessly Rowan teleported herself up to the seventh floor and warily peeked around and most especially into Professor Vector's classroom. To her relief, Professor Vector wasn't there as she slowly made her way to the left corridor that held the tapestry of Barnabas the Barmy attempting to teach trolls ballet.
Closing her mind, she slowly thinks of what she wants and needs, before very carefully holding the thought in mind and walking up and down the corridor three times. The tapestry gently moves as if by a hidden breeze as Rowan glances in the opposite direction of the gleaming oak door that is directly across from the tapestry. With one final glance behind her, she pulls the door handle and enters the room, firmly shutting the door behind her.