One Way Or.
Disclaimer. Harry Potter and all related characters are the ownership of J.K. Rowling.
Really not sure how many chapters this will end up with. Chapter 1 start in 91 and ends in 96. While not a direct sequel this tale share characters with Call Me. If you haven't read that one Harry's behavior is not exactly canon.
Mandy slammed the bedroom door shut in her excitement and launched herself onto her bed. She was a magic user, a witch, the strange little man had told her. She was going to magic school. She needed to read, to prepare. She cast her eyes over her books. Who was a good example to follow? Pug or Garion? Tarran wasn't a wizard nor Frodo. She pulled Magicians Gambit from the shelf, skipping to him in The Vale rereading the boys attempt at moving a rock, laughing at his attempts, and his friend's jokes. The Will and the Word was his method of magic.
The only thing wrong with finding out she was a witch meant that her friendly poltergeist probably wasn't real. For years if she had focused, if she had asked just right, then sometimes the things she wanted in her room flew to her. For years she had been talking to her poltergeist but now she realised it was all her.
With that thought she concentrated and after a few false starts summoned her wooden sword from across the room. She couldn't wait, wizard school was going to be fantastic.
The castle was amazing. Magical moving staircases, doors that only opened when you answered a question. Classrooms that only appeared on a particular Monday. She was sorted into Ravenclaw with other serious. bookish sorts. Ravenclaw was a surprisingly diverse group that year. Su Li's family had only recently moved to Britain from Hong Kong. Padma had a lool that made you expect a mysterious accent but her family had lived in Leicester for generations. Morag insisted she was a Pict and not a Scot, Mandy doubted this but wasn't inclined to argue.
She formed a friendship with Lisa, not because she was the other white English girl but because while technically a half blood, as she understood the term Lisa was the only one with a background that was almost entirely non magical. She had watched the same TV shows and listened to, if not the same music at least bands she had heard of.
Not everything was perfect, the fiction section of the library was lacking. It wasn't until she stumbled across the histories that she found what she wanted. The lives of Merlin and Arthur detailed in all their gory and bloodthirsty detail but best of all was Hogwarts A History. It was full of Heroes. Giants. Villains. Miracle Men. True Love. - Not just your basic, average, everyday, ordinary, run-of-the-mill, ho-hum history book. She was keeping that on extended loan until she bought her own copy. Apart from the lack of fiction, made up for by the actual history the other downside of the wizarding world was quills and ink.
It was fair to say her handwriting was poor. Even with a biro and lined paper her cursive script was unreadable, her hand lagged behind her brain and even she struggled to read it. Having to learn to use a quill and parchment lowered her standard even more. She had tried. Snape gave her a T on her first piece of work. She had asked her Head of House if she could use pen and paper, for once Professor Flitwick lost his smile refusing her request. She struggled on but didn't see much improvement in either her writing or her marks.
It was frustration rather than rebellion that when McGonagall wanted ten inches summarising the latest chapter she scrawled across the parchment in large blocky letters "Why bother you won't be able to read it."
She was shaking when Flitwick lead her from the great hall to the headmasters office. She was going to be expelled, she knew it. Flitwick left on some signal and she took the offered lemon sherbet. It helped to unstick the tongue from the top of her mouth.
"Well Miss Brocklehurst, reports about you are divisive. Any subject with a strong practical element say you are an able student, theory based ones are less complimentary." Dumbledore's eyes seemed to lose their sparkle as he looked her over. "However all are agreed that you handwriting is close to unreadable."
"Yes sir. It's pretty bad with a pen, my cursive looks like an injured spider but with a quill and ink I can barely read it."
"Hmm. Professor McGonagall likes you. She places you in the top five percent of the year on practical and verbal answers. I'd like you to write me a sentence as clearly as you can. First with a pen then cursive then swap to quill and ink."
Three times Mandy wrote out the quick brown fox, in the styles he asked for. Concentrating to make it as clear as possible before passing it over.
"As you say, your work is readable with pen and paper and gets gradually worse. The ideal from your perspective would be to allow you to use a pen however when you sit your exams. The examiners are from outside Hogwarts and they won't accept anything other than parchment and ink. Try again with a biro on this parchment."
She did as the headmaster asked. Her handwriting improved as her fear of being expelled lessoned and her shaking decreased.
"Now watch, this is a transfiguration although not something we usually teach. It should be even simpler than a matchstick to a needle after all its just ink to ink."
Mandy watched carefully as he exaggerated the wand movement then repeated himself another two times before actually casting the spell. The handwriting on the page changed from her scratchy biro to beautifully calligraphied green ink.
"It's actually possible to use lined paper and change that to parchment as you alter the ink. Although that might be beyond you as a first year. Now I'd like you to practice that transfiguration for me and once you have it mastered you then have until tomorrow morning to actually complete your transfiguration homework or Professor McGonagall will give you a T and I imagine a detention too."
It took her two attempts but she got the transfiguration, she then ran back to Ravenclaw tower she had an essay to write and for once she was going to put more effort into the contents than making it readable.
Her penmanship did improve but that was how she made it through her time at Hogwarts. The transfiguration got easier but although she got to the point she could just create words rather than write them first she couldn't do more than a sentence at a time and they were never as well structured as when she wrote out her essay's first.
While some people seemed to not go through a term without an adventure her time at Hogwarts was unremarkable. She studied and improved, Lisa was without doubt her best friend but she was friendly with all in her year, boys and girls. Then fourth year came and suddenly she watched the scramble to find a date. Lisa confessed that she had a crush on Harry Potter and it seemed safe to admit to that too, didn't all the girls want Harry? Teen Witch Weekly said they did. In the end the unpaired Ravenclaw's went as a group, she was nominally Anthony's date but neither of them were serious about it She danced in the huge mass of people while the Weird Sisters played, it was almost as good as real music, certainly better than anything she normally heard on the wizarding wireless. It also allowed her to dance next to the one she found her eyes following.
Fifth year was Owl year and like most of the rest of the Ravenclaws she was concerned about getting decent grades. As was usual they had a rubbish Defence teacher. Lisa had wanted to attend Harry's study group but Marietta had warned them off. Cho had set her sights on Harry and Marietta was ensuring she had a clear run.
Thankfully from a view point of passing the subject there was enough precedent for students with a poor teacher to get through defence. After all plenty of people passed when Quirrell was teaching. Mandy also had to put up with Lisa, her crush on Harry was getting annoying, her inaction even more so.
"When are you going to ask him out?"
"After the Owls. Things are too political now. Hopefully I can get to see him over the summer"
"I won't be around this summer so you can have to yourself but if you haven't made a move by sixth year I will." Mandy had no intention of any such thing but a bit of healthy competition might spur Lisa on, or at least keep her quiet in the meantime.
"Not coming up to York this year then."
"No, my dad's changing jobs so he'll have the whole summer off. He's planned a holiday of a lifetime over in America. He's found a company that will let him pick up a mobile home in Miami and drop it off in Los Angeles. Every time mum writes he's added a new place he wants to visit. I want to go to Cedar Point, Devils Tower and see Monument Valley but dad wants to go everywhere. Apparently we'll be driving for a week."
"That's not too bad."
"A full week of driving? 107 hours? Doesn't sound too great to me. Still I guess it's a big country and when I come back you can tell me how things are going with Harry."
When she and her family returned from their American adventure all Mandy wanted to do was sleep in a bed that wasn't moving. They had seriously miscalculated times and distances. It had taken them a leisurely two weeks to get from Miami to Niagara. Stopping as they wanted along the East Coast. The rest of the drive across the continent got strained. Towards the end from Mount Rushmore down to LA they had been sleeping in shifts not stopping the RV except for fuel. Her dad had even let her drive sections so he and mum could take a break.
Still, she was glad she'd done it, the sounds of New Orleans would stay with her a lifetime. In amidst the mountain of mail was a letter from Lisa. She decided to give it a quick read before she slept.
Even via the letter it seemed that Lisa was having a good summer, her plan to get her tattoos had worked, she also told Mandy that this next year she had decided to stop pretending to be a polite girl and she was coming as herself. With Tattoos and a nose piercing she wouldn't be able to hide it anyway so she would be leaving her hair her preferred pink. Lisa also seemed to drop some hints about a boy, maybe that was where her confidence came from. If Lisa could come with pink hair then she could get a cut that suited her more but not today, today was for sleep.
September the first saw her saving a seat for Lisa and cursing the girl. Where was she? If she'd been here her new hair style and leather jacket would not be a talking point with Morag and Su Li in their robes. Her hair, short to the rear but swept over in a huge parting was miles away from last years modest pony tail, what she wanted was someone with tattoos and dyed hair to cause a distraction.
What she got was two. Suddenly Harry Potter was sitting next to her and Lisa was sitting on Harry Potter. Harry had black jean and a sleeveless t-shirt showing a range of tattoos, a stag on one shoulder, Lisa on his forearm and a small ankh on his right hand. He had stopped wearing glasses and his hair was longer than it had been and was in a mullet. Lisa was in light summer dress that showed more leg than most pure bloods expected to see in their lives. Her hair was a mix of reds. Her shoulder bore an Ankh tattoo and her right hand had a stags head, on her left, Mandy blinked and stared at the engagement ring she had on her hand.
"Sorry everyone, I've just lost us fifty points."
Su Li scowled, Anthony who was competitive over the house points questioned Lisa. "What happened?"
Lisa looked questioningly at Harry who nodded and shrugged. "Hermione caught us fucking in the toilets, I should really have used a silencing charm not just a locking one."
Mandy stared at Lisa in amazement, while this was the Lisa she knew from private conversations and time spent together in the summer, this Lisa would be a shock to her fellow Ravenclaws who thought Merlin was a swear word.
Morag was the first to notice. "Merlin girl, what's that rock on yer finger?"
Once it was pointed out everyone gapped.
"I don't think I need to tell a group of Ravenclaw's what a ring on this finger means."
Mandy sat back and watched as Lisa deflected a thousand questions. She felt an ache whenever she looked at Lisa and Harry, a cold hand around her heart. Eventually the pair left, their cases where in another compartment, Lisa gave her a questioning look and a made a gesture to ask her to follow but she declined and did her best to tune out the conversation that was dominated by her best friend and her fiancée.
Mandy was avoiding Lisa, every time she saw her with Harry she felt the same pangs, the same icy grip. She didn't want to admit, not even to herself. She was jealous. Not for the number one eligible bachelor, the chosen one, the boy who lived. No she was jealous because of him. He was with the person she wanted. She was jealous of Harry Potter because he was with Lisa, holding her hand, kissing her, losing house points for being out past curfew with her. Doing what she didn't want to think about. Obviously not skate boarding, Potter had had that confiscated within a week.
She, she fancied Lisa. She admitted it to herself. She didn't want to think about the implications of that. Wasn't going to admit to it and was therefore avoiding Lisa, even if she was by herself. Especially if she was by herself.
Mandy was reading in bed, not hiding, not avoiding people, most definitely not avoiding Lisa, she was reading. Belgareth's biography had only come out last year and she hadn't got to the point where she had memorised it yet. The wry humour of the book should help her keep her mind off her situation. She hadn't heard any noise to warm her, mostly because she had cast a silencing charm but a mass of pink and red hair burst through her curtains followed by Lisa in her sleep wear.
"Move up." Lisa plonked herself on Mandy's bed. She was wearing a loose vest top and a pair of boy shorts.
Why couldn't she go away or at least put some clothes on? Mandy sighed.
"So why are you avoiding me? I sort of get it when I'm with Harry but you're avoiding me when he's not here."
"Have you ever thought about working up to a subject Lisa?"
She shrugged and a strap moved on her shoulder. "Not with you, not really. I didn't think we had any secrets. Now you're avoiding me. I know you said you fancied Harry but you never seemed serious about it. Is that it?"
"No, you're right I don't fancy Harry."
"At least I can cross you off the list of girls I have to worry about I think the Weasley girl wants to kill me. So what's the problem Mand? I thought we could tell each other anything."
Mandy looked down and away from Lisa. She was showing too much skin for Mandy to feel comfortable looking at her. She let out a long sigh, Lisa was right she was her past friend, they had sworn to tell each other everything. Hopefully this would still be the case.
"I am jealous." She began hesitantly.
"I thought you said you didn't fancy Harry"
Megan glared at the girl. "Look Lisa you want the truth just shut up and let me finish. I am Jealous but not because you're dating Harry. It's because Harry's dating you."
Lisa frowned as she considered this then her eyes opened in surprise. "You mean you're gay." She whispered the last word.
"I don't know, all I know is that there is only one person I fancy and it's you. I don't know if I'm gay it's not like you realise you have feeling for another girl and some pink fucking fairy jumps out of your closet with a handbook."
Lisa squirmed uncomfortably and started to play with her hair a sign she was stressed. "I'm sorry, would a hug be inappropriate right now?"
Mandy looked up surprised. "You're dressed in, not much. We're on my bed and I've just said I fancy you and you want to give me a hug?"
"We're still friend, if you're gay then you won't be my first gay friend. If you hit on me constantly then you also won't be the first, although I don't think you will do that. You look like you need one."
"I do, but it can wait till you're not wearing a top that any sudden movements might make your tits fall out. I only have so much self-control."
Lisa laughed at that and some of the tension eased.
"So you're the straight girl all the gay girls want." Mandy tried a joke too lighten the tension.
"I don't know about all, Pansy hasn't hit on me yet."
"Pansy? Parkinson? Is she gay?"
"So the gossip says. You know her new nose? She got that after Tracey broke her old one when Pansy hit on here."
"And you know this how?"
"Daphne witnessed the punch and Tracey told her what happened. Daphne told Su, she told me. You interested?"
"Well she has that strange mix of arrogance and vulnerability that's why she's so spikey. But there's a long way from admitting I have feelings for you and hitting on another girl. How are." Mandy paused not even wanting to admit the word, eventually whispering it. "lesbians treated in the wizarding world."
"Well the wizarding world is patriarchal as fuck otherwise it would be the witch's world. How they treat women not willing to produce more heirs for them I've no idea. You've spoken before that you're not certain you want to stay in this world after school closes. It's not perfect in the normal world but if you want to come out it might be easier there."
Mandy tried to get her thoughts in order and ignore the sudden image of her kissing Pansy. "Look there is a long way from admitting I have a girl crush to coming out. Even if I am, which I'm not certain." She paused. An enormous relief that they were able to talk about this, that Lisa hadn't run off screaming. "Thanks for being so cool about this. I was half expecting you to run screaming."
"Mand, you're heading into hug territory again. How could we ever stop being friends, especially after that thing we don't talk about."
"Careful now, we shall never speak of that again." Mandy now had a full smile at their shared joke. Things might not be as she hoped but they would be fine all the same.
Mandy looked over to Pansy who was concentrating on her herbology text. She placed her hand on her wand in its pocket and concentrated. The text in Pansy's book transfigured to the dirtiest thing she could think of. Mandy watched she could tell by the widening of her Pansy's eyes and the faint blush that coloured her cheeks when she had come to her altered passage. Mandy touched her wand again and changed the next line of text.
You're cute when you blush.
Mandy concentrated on her own text on the repotting they were about to do while Pansy looked around the class. The rest of the Slytherin's and Ravenclaw's in the greenhouse seemed oblivious to Pansy looking round the room.
"Right everyone pair up and let's get started." Madam Sprout instructed them.
"Shall I work with you Pansy? You seemed unclear on the instructions." Mandy reached for Pansy's book. She could do the transfiguration silently now and without the wand movement she still needed to be touching her wand. She had one hand on her wand in her pocket and one quickly snatched up Pansy's text book. Changing the text back to how it was. "I think I've got this. Could you get us a new pot?"
Pansy looked confused as she queued with the other students to get a pot for this lessons work. She kept looking around trying to work out who had changed her text book.
Mandy said nothing for the rest of the lesson, she held her peace until they filed out of the greenhouses and back into the castle. Pansy seemed slightly isolated. The other Slytherin girls were shunning her and Draco seemed constantly preoccupied. The students started to fragment as they headed for optional subjects, some to runes others to divination. Mandy timed it perfectly, she fell in step with Pansy.
"You're pretty cute when you're flustered too."
Pansy stopped dead in her tracks turning wide eyed to look at Mandy. At this point there was no one paying them any attention. Mandy took Pansy's upper arm and pushed her through the door of the girl's toilets that she had stopped directly in front of. There were two second years in front of the mirror practicing lipstick charms, a copy of Witch Weekly open before them.
Mandy fired off a cannon blast from her wand. "Get out." She locked the door as they slammed it on the way out.
Pansy shook off her hand and had her wand out, held low pointing up at Mandy's face. "What the hell are you up to mudblood?"
"Oh I must have you flustered, six years and you've never called me that before." Mandy's left hand pushed Pansy wand away from here and she took a half step closing the distance the two girls. Her right hand followed the same trajectory and a destination as a slap but at less than a tenth of the speed so her open hand brushed down Pansy's cheek.
"I would have thought it was obvious. I'm coming on to you." Mandy's hand had not left Pansy's face as she spoke. She then closed the distance between them until she leaned in and kissed Pansy. It was a quick peck, a touching of lips together.
Mandy stepped back, watching Pansy intently. The girl had a look of wonderment on her face. Mandy's hand dropped down on to Pansy's neck and applied the smallest of pressure to pull Pansy to her. The second kiss was deeper as she drew Pansy into her mouth tasting her cinnamon flavour. Mandy could have continued this for ever, but broke the kiss, stepping back from Pansy, the look of longing on the dark haired girls face nearly made her cave in and kiss her again but she turned on her heel, unlocked the door and left Pansy alone in the toilet.
Mandy did not seek her out again. She ensured that she sat with her back to the Slytherin's for the next few days. The only shared subject they had was Herbology and that was only once a week. She smiled politely when she saw Pansy on the corridors but she ensured she was never alone. Finally they had their joint Herbology lesson. Mandy ensured that she partnered Pansy who was at this point staring daggers at her. Their work was substandard and Madam Sprout was unhappy with them and they just about scraped an acceptable grade. Mandy headed back to the castle and stood outside the girls toilet until Pansy came into to sight, she then deliberately and slowly headed into the toilets, she let out a breath she didn't know she'd been holding when Pansy came through the door.
She wasn't expecting the look of fury on Pansy's face as she invaded her personnel space. "What bloody game are you playing? First you kiss me, then you ignore me. Did you win your bet? I'm not some toy for you to play with then ignore."
"This is no game Pansy. What am I doing? Let me tell you. I could have had you last week. In a fit of passion I could have taken you further than I did but this is serious and so am I. What will happen to your perfect pure blood reputation when word gets out you're with a mudblood girl? What will they call you in your dorms? Yes, we could have gone further, yes we could have walked out of here hand in hand. It took me some time to admit, even to myself but I'm gay. Are you? Are you ready to face what that means ? Despite what I put in your book the furthest I've gone with a girl is kissed her and that was here with you. If you want more of this." Mandy stepped forward from where she'd been backed against the sinks. Stepping into Pansy personnel space, her two hands came up and pulled her into a kiss. It took all of her determination not to deepen it to lose herself in it. Reluctantly she backed away. "And I know you do, then I need to know you've thought about it. If we're ostracised by the whole school, if it all starts to get too much I want us to face it together and not have you blame me for seducing you.
Look, todays Thursday I will be here waiting 7pm on Wednesday evening. If you don't turn up then I'll know your answer." With that she pushed past Pansy and headed out. She couldn't believe she done it. She couldn't believe that in possibly six days she might be coming out to the whole school.
She tried to gather her thoughts but she was everywhere. It continued all week. She could barely eat, she was distracted in all her lessons. Lisa saved her from destroying her cauldron and possibly the whole potions lab as she lost concentration. When Wednesday morning dawned she rushed to the toilets to throw up, her nerves had got to her. She overheard Su Li jump to the entirely wrong conclusion she was pregnant. That was most unlikely.
By the time of evening meal, she felt so sick she could barely stand. It was only Lisa taking her by the arm that got her to the great hall. As for eating, her hand was shaking so much she could barely hold her fork. People drifting in and out at meal times but there was a natural rhythm when it was obvious that the hall was at peak attendance, when the noise was at peak volume it was then that Pansy got up from the Slytherin table and approached her. She barely noticed herself stand to greet her. Pansy very casually and wandlessly cast a silencing charm around them.
"You're smart you Ravenclaw's giving me a week to think, to decide what I want. I won't be meeting you in the toilets." Mandy almost collapsed at that, still she'd survived Lisa's rejection and she'd survive this. "Slytherin's are ambitious, I want the best and a relationship started in a toilet isn't the best. I'm Pansy Parkinson, I'm a pureblood witch, going further back than we can count. I'm proud of what I am and I don't a fuck what lesser people say. What I am is gay, what I have is a sexy girlfriend. Those who don't like don't matter."
Mandy tried to take in Pansy's words just as her brain started to catch up with her ears her lips took over as Pansy pulled her into a kiss in the great hall. It didn't matter who saw because all she saw, tasted and touched was Pansy and that was all that mattered.
I planned out her USA Odyssey. It was as insane as I could make it. Starting in Miami up to Niagara , down to New Orleans across to the Alamo up to Mt Rushmore. Then to LA via monument valley.
Also if you haven't read it Harry and Lisa are documented in Call Me.
www. deviantart art/Portrait-714953066
Remove the spaces to find Mandy.