The snow was falling thickly upon the castle and its grounds now. The pale blue Beauxbaton's carriage looked like a large, chilly frosted pumpkin next to the iced gingerbread house that was Hagrid's cabin. On that note, an incredible number of girls had asked Hagrid to be their date was just mind-blowing. Hagrid only too happily declined their invitation as he'd been invited by Madame Maxime.
And yes, Rowan had helped Hagrid select his Yule outfit. It was guaranteed to have Hagrid be ravished by Madame Maxime. Or else, Madame Maxime must have a really weird taste in men.
Christmas morning, Rowan awoke to Tiffany squealing in delight. Opening her bed curtains, she glanced down to find a pile of presents next to her bed. With glee, Rowan put on her fluffy robe and began to open the first present. It was from her grandfather and it was a rare book that she had been searching for regarding squibs.
The next gift was a small jewelry box from Aunt Georgine. With care, Rowan opened the box to find a glittering silver necklace encrusted with opals and a pair of dangling matting earnings. The note inside reading, "They'll be sure to contrast nicely with your silver gown."
Faintly smiling at the considerate gift, Rowan put the box away and opened the small presents from her friends. It was mostly books and sweets that she liked. Nothing unusual there.
Though Petunia did send her the anniversary edition of Monopoly 1974. It was lovely and she'd most likely invite Andrew to play with her. Personally, she'd have preferred a genetics' volume but as DNA was still in its early stages and the Human Genome Project wouldn't even start until 1990, there was not much else she could do.
In return, Rowan had gifted Petunia with a perfume bottle charmed to change scents depending on the time of day. For example, a softer scent for morning and stronger scent for evening outings. Needless to say, Petunia adored the gift and sent her a very happy thank you letter back.
With a pause, Rowan spotted one last gift in bright wrapping paper. With a frown, she slowly opened the gift to find a silver bracelet with a glowing round sphere dangling from it. Glancing around she finally spotted the note that read,
"To my dear apprentice,
The bracelet is enchanted to allow underwater vision, maintain perfect body temperature, and has enough air for three hours each day. Use it wisely.
Your Apprenticeship Master, Albus Dumbledore."
No doubt, Severus had gotten something similar more likely in the form of an armlet or arm band. Putting the thoughtful gift aside, Rowan quietly snickers to herself. If that wasn't a clue or blatant cheating from Albus Dumbledore, then she didn't know what was.
Striding out of bed, Rowan says, "Well, shall we go up for breakfast now? We do have all day to get ready." The girls nodded as they went downstairs in their pajamas, but still at least brushed the hair before they left. They weren't the only ones as the majority of the school had come to the same conclusion.
Breakfast and lunch were rather light as tonight would be a large feast. After lunch, Barrett Boone pulled her aside in the Great Hall to the squeal of Tiffany and the stares of others. And especially away from the smoldering dark glares from Severus that if looks could kill, Barrett Boone would have already been burned to a crisp.
Barrett Boone and Rowan hadn't talked nor really interacted since that day if one disregarded their classroom participation in Ancient Studies. The ashy brown-haired young man with silver eyes looked much better since the last time they had been alone. A bit of his usual lazy smile was starting to come back, but there was still a tint of sadness to him. But at least the light spray of freckles across his nose tended to hide his feelings making him seem that much more cheerful than he really was.
"So, shall we meet half an hour before seven at the entrance?" Barrett asked as they received a lot of strange glances from those entering and leaving the Great Hall.
"Yes, that will be fine," Rowan said as she carefully eyed him. "You only have to stick around for dinner and the first waltz. I don't mind if you decide to wander off afterward. I know that the invitation was made in a state of great emotional duress."
Barrett looks shocked at the offer as a slow grin appears on his face causing Rowan's heart to erratically beat for a moment there. She quickly reminded herself of his personal s.e.x.u.a.l preferences causing the feeling to swiftly go away.
"You were there for me in my greatest hour of need, it's only fair," Barrett replied with a bit of the old brightness in his eyes. "And besides, I think it'll be fun. I do need something to take my mind off of things. I hope you don't mind if I have you dancing the entire night away."
"It's fine, I'm not wearing high heels, but fine slippers instead," Rowan instantly murmured earning a chuckle from Barrett.
"Well given your height, I can see why that would be the case," Barrett jovially said as Rowan made a face at his comment. There wasn't anything wrong with her height! It's the boys, who were short from only eating sweets and pumpkin juice! They lacked a proper nutritionally balanced meal!
"Well until tonight," Barrett said and was about to turn away before he paused. "By the way what color are your robes?"
"Silver, why?" Rowan called out to him.
"It'll be a surprise," Barrett said with a mischievous grin, before walking away leaving Rowan blankly staring at him. He really was her type. It was a da*n shame that the best ones were always taken or batted for the other team. What was a girl to do?!
The minute Rowan entered the girl dorms Tiffany launched herself at Rowan. "Tell me, what did he say!" Tiffany eagerly begged to know like an adorable cruppie. Just because she couldn't have some romance in her own life that didn't mean she couldn't live vicariously through her friends.
"He just wanted to know what time we would be meet and where," Rowan replied as she scrambled to remove Tiffany away from herself.
Pouting Tiffany clung to Rowan until finally Bethanie took pity on Rowan and said, "Tiffany, dear, we have to start getting ready. We all need to take baths, do our hair and makeup, and accessorize correctly. There's much to do, dear, now let go of Rowan."
Tiffany instantly let go and said, "Then we better hurry to bathe! I'm sure that the washing room will be full right now!"
And sure, enough it was, the four of them barely found a shower stall to bathe in as long lines began to form as the rare younger years, the fourth, and fifth-year girls impatiently waited to shower. The sixth and seventh years didn't need to worry as their dorm rooms had private bathrooms including a bathtub and two showers.
Back in the dorms, Rowan had gently dried her hair, before doing her hair. Thanks to Tiffany, she knew what spells to cast to get her hair to fall in silky, thick black waves. Her normal long straight hair now fell in thick waves that had Tiffany singing their praise. Tiffany kept rubbing her face in Rowan's silky soft hair until Rowan threatened to steal her makeup. That scared her off as Tiffany went off to finish her look.
With care she began to do her makeup, Rowan didn't really need much given her age. She just applied a light foundation to leave her skin smooth. There was a bit of eyeliner and mascara as well as very natural looking eyeshadow. Satisfied, she added the finishing touch a bit of rosebud lipstick and perfect. She wasn't one for adding blush, but all she needed to do was pinch her cheeks to add a bit of natural color.
Finished, Rowan carefully undressed and then finally dressed. The long silk silver gown clung to her every curve making her seem much more endowed than she really was. Feeling a trace of an embarrassment at hearing Silvia wolf whistle, she quickly puts on open silver dress robes that nicely matched her sleek silver gown. The dress robes fit perfectly clinging to her form and interlocking seamless with the sleek silver gown.
Rowan paused to glance at Silvia, who was putting on a dark blue gown with matching robes. While Tiffany had gone for a warmer color, a lovely rose shade with a matching gown. It was Bethanie who left her staring. Normally Rowan would have said that an autumn orangey-red gown was a terrible color choice. But on Bethanie, the gown not only clung to her figure but made her look simply divine. Regulus truly wouldn't know what hit him.
Quickly returning to her own task, Rowan still had to finish changing. Sliding knee-length silk dress socks, she felt a tad risqu. Chuckling she understood where the kink formed from as she slipped on her slippers. She paused to carefully removed the silver chained necklace with the glittering dark moonstone that she usually wore under her clothes.
Once it was safely put away, Rowan grabbed the gifted jewelry from the box. She carefully put on the dangling silver, opal encrusted earrings with the matching necklace. Satisfied, she added just one final finishing touch a spray or two of a fruity, spiced perfume. She quite liked the sensual scent but didn't dare put it on until now.
With a whirl in front of the mirror, Rowan found herself grinning. Before adding her wand into the hidden wand pocket in her dress robes. Satisfied she glanced at the time and blinked. It was already five! Where had all the time gone?!