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Louis Valois, Aladren
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Fri Jul 21, 2017 14:18

Professor O’Malley was late. Ten minutes late. Normally, Louis would either be chatting and enjoying the reprieve, or getting mildly annoyed that they couldn’t just start the lesson already, but today he wasn’t in the mood to do either. Flopped over his desk, he just sat there and stared into space, unsuccessfully trying not to think about anything, and especially not the summer.

He’d received two letters that morning. The first had been from his cousin Juliette, a response to his somewhat dramatically written plea. It had been full of sympathy and kindness, telling him not to make any rash decisions, but assuring him that he could stay with her, in Britain, over the summer if he really didn’t want to go home. Having already been disowned from the family, she understood some of the moral dilemmas he was facing. The other letter had been from his grandmother.

Normally, Louis loved hearing from his grandmother. She was the family member he was closest to. They shared similar ideas, and she was always the one person in his family who understood him (other than Juliette, of course, but officially she was no longer a Valois). Louis’s grandmother was the main spanner in the works, the person who he would miss if he really did run away. And, somehow, she seemed to know all about his plans.

My dear, do what you want afterwards, but please come home this summer. If my advice means anything to you, come back to Paris after term ends, before you make any decisions. That is all I ask of you.

He couldn’t really say no to his grandmother, not when she asked him like that. It was rare of her to give him direct orders. Normally she gave him advice, helped him talk things through, and she must have had a good reason to write like that. He wasn’t sure how she knew that he’d been planning to stay away from home this summer, but now he was torn. Should he go back, this one last time, or should he ignore his grandmother and cut ties completely? What would he regret more: going back to his father, his family, and his old life, based on all the values he hated; or turning his back on his grandmother, who had always been there for him?

Professor O’Malley finally arrived, interrupting his musings. He was relieved when she gave them their instructions for the lessons without asking questions. He usually liked the opportunity to answer the questions, but today he felt that getting on and immersing himself in potion-making could be the distraction from his thoughts that he needed.

He prepared his cauldron, still not managing to divert his thoughts from the summer. He absent-mindedly reached for the salamander blood, only to clumsily miss it, knocking over the bottle. Thanks to Quidditch, his reflexes were quick enough to prevent much spillage, but there was still salamander blood both on his desk and the desk next to him.

“F**k, sorry about that,” he apologised to the desk owner, grimacing at his unusual clumsiness as he reached for his wand to clear up the mess. Great. He just couldn’t catch a break these days.

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