Ooookay! Time for an update!
Eija - Thank you very much for your reply, and your PM that arrived as I was posting this. I had been hesitative of writing about the Cannon characters until now as I did not know if I could capture the way JKR depicts them. I read some specific chapters of OotP again to get me in the mood again, as well as a chapter of the herbology class of COS.
Malfoy was a bit more easy to come across as he is described in details by JKR in her books. And yes, he and Yannick will have more encounters, especially after the rebutal Yannick sent him in teh last chapter. Malfoy does not forget easy, I have seen.
I plan to continue to show different facets of Yannick as I have done so far. You might have nticed now that he is good in Herbology, seeing that this is his father;s field it is not too surprising. All I can say without revealing too much about Yannick is that even he does not realize yet who he is really. He will find this in the chapters.
Harrysbabbe, Gmhpfan - I am very glad that you like my fanfic and I hope you will enjoy this next chapter as well.
One last word for Erwan - Thanks a lot for sending me some of your stories so I could read them. I took one or two ideas from there, you'll recognize them. Your own fanfic are really great and gave me some ideas on how to write mine, although I am trying to keep my style my own.
Okay, here is the next chapter
Chapter 7: Quidditch
"Beautiful day for the last Quidditch match of the year" Yannick thought as he entered his dorm that Saturday morning. He had awaken early that day and cursed himself for that. He had tried to fall back asleep but failing to do so, had then decided to go out for his morning exercises. That had kept him busy until 8:30AM and all that he needed now was a good shower. He let his archery bag down by his trunk and looked around the room. Sean was not in bed anymore but seeing that his friend's clothes for the day were still there untouched, he knew that he had not gone to eat yet.
"Probably under the shower."
Yannick undressed, put on his bathrobe and headed to the common shower. When he got there he saw that only one of the showers was being used.
"Sean? You there?"
"Yup mate!" He heard Sean answer from the shower. "How was your exercise this morning?"
Yannick entered the shower that was on the left of Sean's. "Not bad. Feeling exhausted but also a lot more awake."
"That is why I do my exercise in the evening" Sean answered. "So I can just crash in bed and sleep the exhaustion away."
"Yeah, well, to each what he prefers." Yannick answered, taking off his bathrobe. He took his wand and flicked it towards the faucet. The water started coming out, nice and hot. "Perfect as always." he thought.
"So," he heard Sean say. "Last game of the year today. Ravenclaw against Slytherin. Should be fun to watch."
"Yeah. Ravenclaw should have it easy."
"Don't be too sure mate. Slytherin is known for playing dirty."
"Well Ravenclaw is quite good from what I saw at their practice. Who does Slytherin have?"
"Well, their captain is Montague, a chaser.Warrington and Pucey are the remaining two chaser of the team. Bletchley is their keeper, and not a good one if you ask me. The beaters are... hold on for this one... Crabbe and Goyle."
Yannick let out a laugh. "Those two gorillas? I did not even know they could fly a broom."
"Miracles happen." Sean continued. "I think Malfoy had a lot to do in them getting on the team in '95. Figures he would feel better having his two bodyguards watching over him while he tries to find the snitch."
Yannick rolled his eyes in disbelief. "That git is their seeker?"
"Yup!" Sean answered. "If you ask me, it had more to do with daddy's money than from his skills on a broom or as a seeker."
"What do you mean?"
"I mean that the year he came on the team, the whole Slytherin team had brand Nimbus 2001 brooms."
"Thats why I say that Slytherin is still a hard to beat team." Sean said. "But Ravenclaw should be able to to it still. They have to, I bet two galleons that they would win today."
Yannick chuckled. "Don't worry Sean. I have seen their last practice and I can tell you, they are good."
"Oh, thats right! You attended their last practice. That could be useful for our team as well."
Yannick heard Sean's shower stopping and his friend stepping out.
"So, what are their preferred tactics to beat a team?" Sean continued.
Yannick laughed. "Oh no my friend! I am keeping my mouth shut on this one. All I can tell you is that they are good."
"Aaww, come on Nick! You can say more than that. Help the team!"
"Sean. Our team is already very good and I am not going to risk my friendship with Alex by playing spy on her team."
He heard Sean chuckle. "You and your honor. Bad spy, no hot water." Yannick heard a flick of a wand and suddenly, his shower was ice cold.
"RAAAAAAH!!! SEAN! GET BACK HERE YOU..." Yannick shouted while trying to catch his friend who had already disappeared from the bathroom. He cursed and then laughing at the prank, flicked his wand towards his shower to get the hot water flowing again. He finished his shower, dried himself and then headed back to his room. Sean was finishing to dress up when he entered.
"No hard feelings mate?" Sean asked him.
"Well, it was quite unexpected." he answered. "Just don't complain to me when I get back to you for it." he added with a wink.
"Oh my! I guess I need to watch my back then..." Sean started with a grin on his face.
"Oh shut up!" Yannick told him, throwing his towel in Sean's face.
Sean laughed and threw the towel back at him. Yannick caught it and put it up to dry on a hanger. Sean had finished to dress and was heading out.
"You are going to take long?" he asked Yannick.
"Just a few minutes" he answered.
"Right. Then I'll wait for you in the common room." he told him. "See you there." he added, going out of the room.
Yannick finished to put on his clothes for the day that consisted of the usual Hogwarts uniform with his house's colors. He took a look at his wand and winced at the sight. Fingerprints could be seen on the sleek and polished mahogany wood. He opened his trunk and took out his wand cleaning material. He first took out any smudge and fingerprints off it, making sure to not add more by holding the wand without a cloth. That done he took out a bottle with a green liquid solution, he dabbed a cloth with it and started applying it to the wand. The wand emitted some blue sparks at its end and the wood started to glow a bit. Yannick smiled. This lotion was a special one made by his father. It consisted of normal wood wax that had been mixed with a plant feeding agent. A little magical touch here and there and his father had come up with a solution that waxed the wood and also kept it nourished and healthy, thus greatly reducing the risk of having one's wand break from wear.
"I would look so stupid if that happened during a spell."
He held the wand at arms length and made several quick moves with it. The wand was slashing the air, making a small noise. He then made a circle movement with the tip, slashed up diagonally through it and then drew an "S". The S shone in a silver light and then changed into the silver leaf emblem.
He tucked the wand in his belt and put his wand cleaning materials back in the trunk. He was closing the lid of the trunk when his attention was caught by an object in it. He took out a black leather wand-sheath with silver lining. He took out the sheath fro the trunk and held it in his hand. The leather was soft to the touch and the inside had silver velvet lining to protect the wand. Straps on the sheath's back could be adjusted to fit the arm if any wearer, but it also could be placed on a belt. He sighed, the object brought back so many memories, his old school, the dueling classes, his father's pride when he had won the cup in the school's dueling cup for the fist time. His father had presented him with that sheath the evening of his win. He turned it around and looked at the date etched in silver on the leather, June 1993.
"Merlin! It seems so long ago already."
He stood up and strapped the sheath on his belt at his left side. He took his wand and tucked it neatly in the sheath. Still lost in thoughts he grabbed his backpack and cloak and left from the room.
He met with Sean in the common room and they headed to the dining hall to get their breakfast. They settled at their usual table and started to eat, talking with some fellow sixth years about the oncoming Quidditch game. While they were talking Yannick looked over to the Ravenclaw table. Alex had just sat at her place talking with some of her friends. Their eyes met, she smiled at him and then continued to talk to her friends. Yannick continued to look at her and then felt someone nudge him in the ribs.
"Mate. You are staring at her again." Sean said.
Yannick smiled, blushing a bit and started to eat again.
"Yeah well, at least I am talking to her now, so you can't tease me anymore on that one." he told his friend.
"Ooooh, low blow." Sean replied "But I can do lower. So... did you ask her out for the Yule ball yet?" he added with a sly grin.
Yannick did not answer.
"I thought so." Sean said with a wide grin. "Well, you better hurry mate. I don't know if she will wait until the last day for you to ask."
"How do you know that she is not going with someone yet?" Yannick asked him.
"Ah well... I have my inside sources." his friend replied.
Yannick was about to ask him about it when they were interrupted by the sound of flapping wings. The morning mail was coming. Hundreds of owls filled the dining hall, coming to deliver letters to the students. An grey eagle owl landed in front of him. Yannick untied the package it was carrying and gave the owl a piece of bacon. The owl ate the bacon and flew away again. Yannick opened the package. It contained two letters, one from his parents and one from his grand mother, as well as two smaller packages. One was addressed to him but the other had no name.
"News from home?" Sean asked him.
"Yeah." he answered, putting the mail in his backpack. "But I'll read it later. Right now, I am due to the library. I want to do this essay Snape gave us to do." he added standing up.
"Mate, now I know you are daft! Half the school is going to Hogsmead and you are staying back to do an essay for Snape? It is not due until next week."
Yannick chuckled. "I prefer getting the bad stuff done first so I do not have to think about it later."
"You are hopeless, you know that?" Sean said, feigning despair.
"So I have been told." Yannick answered with a smile. "Just make sure to bring me some stuff back from Honeydukes." he added starting to head towards the entrance of the dinning hall.
"Will do mate." Sean called after him.
Yannick entered in the school's library some minutes later and went to a desk where he knew he would not be too disturbed. While on his way he picked out two books about potions for his essay. He sat at the desk. The table was big enough to seat four students, two on each side, and had a chandelier in its center that gave out a nice golden light. He took out his parchment, his quills and his ink from his backpack and set them before him on the desk. Somehow, the idea of doing this essay right away did not appeal to him. He looked in his backpack again and took out the two letters he had received. He opened the one from his parents and started to read.Dear Nickie,
"Will she ever call me another way?" he wondered, he read on.Thank you very much for your letter, it was very pleasing to receive news from you and to see that you are adjusting well in your new school.
Your father and I are very busy however and our days are unfortunately very long. We don't spend that much time at home, in fact, we did not even take much time to unpack things ourselves and had to leave that to the House Elves. They are very helpful and it is a real joy to have them around to help. The house is now fully furnished and I do think you will like it, especially your room as we tried to keep everything the same as you had it in France.
I forwarded your comment to Gran and she appreciated it a lot. She said that this young lady has taste to appreciate such simple things. She said she would answer you and if you did not get her answer yet, it should arrive very soon to you. You know how Gran is on such matters.
Yannick smiled at the comment. His grand mother was one of the person who always took care to reply to letter or comment she received and that was something he respected a lot in her. He continued to read the letter which told him about his parents' daily routine and as well gave him news of the family. Reading the letter he realized how much he actually missed them. They had always been so close together while in France and now they were separated for most of the year. He sighed, he would see everyone in the winter holidays anyhow. At the end of the letter, the handwriting changed and he recognized the handwriting of his father.Hey Son,
I am sorry to make it this short but I have to rush back to the ministry to take care of a situation that has come up.
I looked at the name, Dewitt, you asked data about. I did not find any record of wizards of that name except for a young witch who is right now at Hogwarts, sixth year in Ravenclaw. Both her parents are Muggles. I will not go into the details of their profession and all, this is something this young lady should tell you herself, not me.
I am very proud to see that you are doing well at school. You have a very promising future in front of you.
I love you very much, Dad.
PS: You might want to think about inviting your friend Alexandra to our end of the year celebration, I'd be delighted to meet her and I am sure the same goes for your mother.
Yannick rolled his eyes as he read the post-scriptum. He should have known that his parents would put two and two together, no matter how cryptic he tried to be. He let out a sigh and took the letter from his grand-mother. He looked at it, taking note of the care she had put in it, the way she wrote his name, the seal that closed the letter, all these little things that showed how much she liked to keep in touch with others. He opened the letter.Dearest Yannick,
Although it was small, I really enjoyed your letter giving me news from you. I am very happy to see that all is going well for you in Hogwarts and from the conversations I have had with your parents, they feel the same way and are very proud of you. It is still a strange feeling to not have you around my house anymore though, I miss my little helper. Your cousin Anaïs often asks for new from you each time she comes to see me. You should write to her, I am sure she would like it.
The crest you sent me is of a very old design and I am amazed to see it turn up at Hogwarts. I know from where it comes from but I will tell you this when I see you in the holidays. It is a sensitive matter that I feel I cannot entrust to a letter. Please keep me informed of anything strange you see or Altair reports to you.
I have enclosed two packages with this letter. One is for you, the other is for the young lady who commented on you brooch. I do not know her name and I did not ask your mother when she told me of her comment so I entrust it to you to give it to her. She has very a good taste for simple things and that has always been something I liked in others.
Take good care of yourself my Yannick and do well on your studies.
Yannick smiled, something the letters of his grand-mother always did to him. He cast his thoughts to her home, near the enchanted forest in France. He had always felt so good in that house. It was big, a manor, and his parents had lived there since he was born. He always could turn to his grand-mother when he needed someone other than his parents to talk to. She had been the first to realize the bond he shared with Gwendall and also the first in comforting him after the accident. In fact she was one of the reason he had not fallen deep into depression. He was still deep in thoughts when a voice brought him back to reality.
"A knut for your thoughts?"
"What? Who?" He said, startled, turning to see who had said that. Alexandra was standing by a bookshelf on his right. "Oh... sorry... I did not realize your were there." he told her.
She smiled. "I could see that and that is why I waited before making my presence known. News from home?" she asked, pointing to the two letters.
"Yeah, parents and grand-mother."
"Nothing bad, I hope?"
"What? Oh no! No, no. Nothing bad at all." he answered. "It is just that the last one got me thinking of home and that made some memories resurface. Some more painful than others." he added.
"Want to talk about it? I am a good listener."
He smiled at her remark. "I know and no. It's fine. Thank s for the concern though."
"So, what are you doing in the library instead of enjoying a nice Saturday?" he asked her, changing the subject.
"Ha! I should ask you the same question, mister!" she laughed. "Well... actually I was looking for you."
"Oh really?" He asked her, surprised. "I wonder why..."
"Well, I am kind of having a problem on my herbology homework and... seeing that you are top of the class in that subject... I was wondering... maybe... if you could give me a hand on it?"
He smiled. "Sure. I was going to do an essay for Snape on potions but that can wait." he told her.
"Great!" she told him, smiling back and coming to sit in front of him. "I can see if I can help you on that in exchange. I am not too bad on potions."
They worked together for the rest of the morning. The herbology homework was not that hard in Yannick's point of view but seeing that Alexandra was still having trouble understanding it, he went on to explain it and answered her questions about the subject. They took a short break for lunch and then continued. When Yannick was certain she now understood the subject of her homework, he started on his own essay. Alexandra gave him tips here and there and also referred him to a good book on potions where he found exactly what he needed to finish his essay. When it was done, looked at it over, doing corrections where needed.
"Well, that finishes that. Thirty bloody inches in all. Just what Snape asked for." he said. "Alas! I am afraid my quill will never recover from the strain." he added in a dramatic voice.
Alexandra laughed at his remark. "If your quill survives the whole year, I'll be amazed." she told him. "You should buy some extra ones in Hogsmeade."
"It's fine, I have spare ones in my trunk already."
Alexandra looked at her watch. "Well, I guess I should be going now. The match will start soon and I need to get ready." She stood up. "Thank a lot for your help on this."
"Hey, you're welcome. I am glad I was able to help you out." he told her.
"See you at the game?" she asked.
"Would not miss it for anything."
She smiled and left from the library. Yannick looked at her go out and then let out a sigh of well being. He crossed his arms behind his head and looked up at the ceiling. When was the last time he had felt that good?
An hour or so later he was with Sean at the Quidditch pitch. They were in the Hufflepuff stands, both sporting Ravenclaw flags. The rest of the stands around the pitch were packed with students. The game was ongoing at a fast pace and Slytherin was leading by twenty points. Sean was looking a bit desperate at this but Yannick had told him that Cho Chang, the Ravenclaw seeker, was much more able to catch the snitch than Malfoy would ever be.
"Warrington has the quaffle, he passes to Montague, passes to Pucey... YES!! intercepted by Bradley!! Come on! Score this one!"
"Mr FINNIGAN!! I asked you to be UNBIASED in your commentaries!!"
Yannick laughed at the scolding of Professor McGonagall. Seamus Finnigan, the Gryffindor student commentating the game was clearly showing on which side he was for this game. He was cheering the goal scored by the Ravenclaw captain when he felt something observing him. He turned towards the area it came from, the forest. He looked intently there, not being able to see anything. Suddenly the feeling disappeared just as he had spotted a dark shape in the trees.
"Strange." he thought "That was not Altair..." He looked again but the shape had disappeared.
A loud cheer from Sean got his attention back to the game. Ravenclaw had scored again and they were now tied in points with Slytherin. Suddenly a green blur passed their stand, followed closely by a blue one.
"Uh-oh! It looks like Malfoy has seen the snitch and is going for it. Chang is in close pursuit." he heard Finnigan say.
Malfoy was going as fast as he could one hand outstretched, trying to catch the snitch. The small golden ball was doing crazy figures in its attempt to escape. Cho was trying to keep with Malfoy but her broom could not match his speed and she was starting to loose ground. Yannick heard Sean moaning as he watched what seemed to be the oncoming victory of Slytherin. Suddenly, as Malfoy's hand was almost touching the snitch, a bulger cut his flight pass, hitting the snitch and sending it flying upwards. Malfoy was destabilized and started spinning out of control. Cho on the other hand, saw the snitch go up and chased after it.
"Superb intervention by Dewitt! Ha! Tough luck Malfoy!"
Yannick looked towards where Alexandra was and saw that she was quite pleased with her last move. Goyle sent a bulger flying towards her but she saw it coming, flipped her club confidently and sent the bulger back to him with a two handed swing. Goyle had to dive hard to avoid being hit. A sudden explosion of cheers got Yannick to look towards the center of the pitch again, Cho was flying around with her fist in the air. She had caught the snitch. Ravenclaw had won the match.
The rest of the day was pure celebrations for Ravenclaw and they were not alone either, Gryffindor and most of Hufflepuff were happy for their win against Slytherin. Sean was ecstatic, having won his bet on the outcome of the game. Dinner followed with the same mood, the only silent spot of the dining hall being the Slytherin side, who were clearly sulking over their loss. Professor Flitwick could be seen at the teacher's table talking with Professor McGonagall and making figures with his hands, depicting the game. Professor Snape was looking at them talking and seemed to have lost his appetite.
"Gee! I wonder why?" Yannick told himself with amusement as he looked at him.
He was talking to Sean when he saw Alexandra standing up with a group of other Ravenclaw girls and going out from the hall.
"I'll meet with you at the common room." he told Sean.
He grabbed his backpack and stood up to follow them. He caught up with the group as they were about to go into the corridor that brought them to their common room. He called Alexandra and saw her look in his direction. She smiled an said something to the other girls who giggled and then continued without her in the corridor.
"Congratulation on your win." he told her as he reached her.
"Thanks." she said. "It was a hard game though."
"The way you got Malfoy off the snitch was absolutely brilliant. He was still fuming about it at dinner."
"Yeah well... I guess I know who I can thank for that training." she said.
"Really? Who would that be?" he asked innocently.
"Like you would not know!" she replied hitting him playfully on the arm.
"Ouch! Ok, ok! I am happy I was of some help." he told her. "Hey, by the way and before I forget." he added reaching in his backpack. "This came for you in the mail." He gave her the package from his grand-mother. "It's from my grand-mother." he added quickly.
She frowned, taking the package and looking at him. "I don't even know her... Why would she be sending me a package?"
Yannick shuffled a bit on his feet, a bit embarrassed. "Well... I wrote to my parents recently and... well I told them about what I had been doing in Hogwarts and... I also remembered you commenting on the brooch of my cloak." he said "I know the time my grand-mother spends on making these things and... I asked my mother to transmit your comment to her. She appreciated it a lot as you can see." he added pointing to the package in he hand. "She told me that herself in her own letter, but as my mother had not told her your name, she asked me to give it to you."
Alexandra considered the package for a moment, then looked at him again. "Has she always been that way to persons she does not know?" she asked him
Yannick nodded. "She is someone that is very open with her opinions. And she always lets the person concerned know. I remember one day in my French school that a teacher told me that I was a hopeless case in the herbology subject and that it was anyway a dying art that was not really worth studying. I mentioned that in a letter to her. The next day a howler arrived for that said teacher in the mail, right when we were all having breakfast. He went to another room to open it but I guess that she had put a sonorus charm on it because the whole school heard the howler. I never heard Gran that angry."
"She sounds like a very interesting person." she told him. "Thanks a lot Nick." she added.
They stood there looking at each other for a minute, until Alexandra spoke again.
"Well, I have to go to my common room now. We are going celebrate our win in Ravenclaw style and I would hate myself for being late." she said. "I'll see you around tomorrow." she added with a smile and turning towards the corridor.
Yannick grabbed her gently by the arm. "Can I ask you just one question before you go?"
She turned around to face him."Of course you can. What is it?"
Yannick felt heat rising in him. He opened his mouth but words seemed to have escaped him. His throat was dry. He felt like an idiot for even trying to ask her.
"Well... I... Sean told me about... and event that.... takes place just before... Christmas... the Yule ball." he said. Why was he finding it so hard to talk all of a sudden?
Alexandra was looking at him, waiting for his question.
"I was wondering if... well if you want... if you would agree... to... to be my date for the ball." he finished. There, he had said it. "I know it is still a month or more away... I thought I would ask you so... you know... you would have time to consider it and..." he continued.
Alexandra smiled and put her hand on his mouth to get him to stop talking. "Yannick, you talk too much." she told him. "But I would love to be your date for the ball." she added, taking a step forward an kissing him lightly on the cheek.
Yannick had been ready for any reaction from her, or at least he thought he had. He now realized he had not expected it to be that one. Alexandra stepped back, smiling at him. "Merlin she is beautiful!" he thought.
"So... so we have a date then?" he asked her, still a bit under shock.
"Of course we have a date Nick." she laughed and then hugged him. They held each other for a while and then she pulled from the embrace. "Okay, I really have to go now. The rest of the team will start to wonder where I disappeared to if I don't show up to the party." She looked him and gave him another kiss on the cheek. "Goodnight."
"Goodnight Alex." Yannick said, looking at her walking down the corridor. She turned in another corridor towards her common room and was gone from his sight. He stood there, even thought he could not see her anymore, still amazed by what had just happened.
*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*Okay, I know, it goes a bit in romance right now but don't worry... action will start at some point.