Low and behold more than half of the school in the following week were down and out for the count with sniffles and rather awful colds. Quarantined classes were held as those ill were to remain in their dorms and common rooms, while those free of sickness were to attend their usual classes. It wasn't fair to those free of illness, but it's not like those stuck in bed were enjoying themselves either.
As the classes were much smaller, some of the classes with only a few students were temporarily combined with classes of the same year. Take for example Arithmancy and Ancient Runes. The 3rd year classes had been combined into one sole class until the quarantine was removed
The most pessimistic ones about the entire situation were the 5th and 7th years who were stuck in bed or in the infirmary. More than few of those years had to even be given calming draughts as they had despaired over ever catching up. Luckily, the Professors were rather understanding and held small classes in the house dorms, assigning low-level homework to those two years. Which did miracles for the panicking 5th and 7th years!
When regular classes once more resumed the library and study hall were bursting with students trying to desperately catch up on more than a weeks' worth of lessons and homework. Sitting in the library, Rowan rather dismissively sniffed as she finished the wizarding physiology textbook. Though wizards were more advanced in some way, it seemed that they were nowhere near as detailed as the medical physiology of the human world.
It made perfect sense as wizards had magic to rely on whether as normal people did not and as such had to make do. Not to mention, wizards viewed it as insane to cut someone open in order to heal them, which shouldn't be as if said procedure could heal the individual, why question the approach?
Having learned nothing that she didn't already know, Rowan closes the book with a snap as Lupin glances up at her and says, "Didn't find what you wanted, Rowan?"
"I'd say," Rowan muttered under her breath. "The wizarding physiology textbooks are a century or two behind on the muggle ones. They could learn a thing or two to say the least."
"And why are you studying the human anatomy in the first place again?" Pettigrew said with a dubious glance at her as he peeked at her over the brim of his course textbook.
"Research of course," Rowan flatly stated causing Pettigrew to shiver at the cold statement. Thinking better of it to ask, Pettigrew quickly drops his head back behind his book and begins to urgently read.
Glancing around, Rowan just noticed that Sirius and James weren't present. "Where are those two?" Rowan asked as she gestured to their empty seats.
"Sirius was going to ask some cute Hufflepuff girl to go with him to the next upcoming Hogsmeade trip, whenever that is," Lupin answered without glancing up from his essay for Divination. Apparently writing a plausible symbolism for a frog in a teacup was harder than it looked.
"And James-," Lupin paused in thought. "I'm not actually sure, where James is, but he said something about asking someone to go with him."
"Lily," Rowan instantly thought, but didn't say it out loud. But it was about time though, they were now thirteen and hormones were starting to act up. Now, when James realized how much he truly liked her that would be an entirely different story.
Not in the mood to study anymore, Rowan gets up and leaves and makes her way out of the busy library as Madam Pince sees to be rather furious at the mount of students disturbing her peace and quiet. More than a dozen students had already been kicked out by the cranky librarian for being too loud or eating in the library.
Rowan hadn't gone down the hall very far when she encountered the walking snogging pair of Wilkes and his paramour. Pressing herself against the wall, she waited until they safely passed past her, before shaking her head. "It's a wonder they get around without walking straight into walls," Rowan muttered to herself as she passed down the stone hall.
From the frosty windows, she could see the grounds were stark and bare as the black lake had frozen over even more, but still wouldn't be fully frozen until the first real snowfall, which could be any day now by the stormy gray clouds that seemed to perpetually hover in the distance. The dungeons, of course, had already begun to turn into frozen freezers but hadn't become unbearable yet. Not watching where she was looking, Rowan suddenly found herself slamming straight into someone.
They both let out a groan as Rowan glanced up as the angry retort in her voice froze. "James?" Rowan finally said as she watched him rub the red bruise on his face.
"Oh, hey, Rowan," James sheepishly said. "Sorry, I wasn't watching where I was going."
Rowan didn't confirm that the was the case for herself as well, but instead says, "Why were you so distracted?"
"Nothing!" James hastily cried out as his face began to flush like a tomato.
"Really?" Rowan said as she crossed her arms over her chest. "I find that hard to believe given the steaming red lobster color that you're turning."
"Fine," James pouted as he crossed his arms over his chest. "If you must know, you, nosey snake. I asked Lily to come with me to Hogsmeade during the next trip and she turned me down."
"I'm not a nosey snake!" Rowan flatly snapped back. "And why?"
"She's going with her friends," James murmured back with unconscious relief heard in his voice.
"Well, there's plenty of more opportunities," Rowan pointed out. "And besides-." Rowan's voice trailed off as she caught a face staring at her in the corner of the window's reflection. Whirling around, she turns and stares behind her, but she doesn't see anyone but the glimmer of a shadow hurrying away.
"Rowan?" James frowned as he too turned to stare in the direction she had so hastily turned to stare into. "Is something wrong?"
"Must have been just a figment of my imagination," Rowan lied, before saying, "Anyway, I'll see you later," before hurrying away. It wasn't her imagination, was it? But then again, she had felt that stare several times since her first year. Was someone watching her? But she'd never noticed anything unusual except for the disappearance of her scarf last year.
Somewhat unsettled for the rest of the evening, Rowan found herself distant and poking at her food. But if someone was watching her, why? And if it really had started in her first year, there wasn't any reason for her to be watched. She had stood out a bit, but nothing too unusual. Nor had she involved herself with Malfoy and them beyond October. Still, she resolved to be more attentive and see if she could catch her unknown stalker.