The Sugar Quill
Author: Team Fidge (Professors' Bookshelf)  Story: Fidgers, Lockhart, and Valentine's  Chapter: Default
The distribution of this story is for personal use only. Any other form of distribution is prohibited without the consent of the author.

~*~
Daily Prophet, Excerpt:
January 31, 2002
‘Escaped Professor Causes Mayhem’
‘ It has been confirmed… former Hogwarts professor and St. Mungo’s resident, Gilderoy Lockhart, has escaped. ‘Mr. Lockhart is certainly not ready to be returned to the streets,’ an irritated St. Mungo’s Mediwizard is quoted, ‘only one quarter of his memory has returned, and he is still quite unaware of his identity.’ Lockhart was last seen in Brussels. He is rumored to be wearing a ‘Cupid suit’ and carrying a golden harp. If you happen to come upon the deranged Gilderoy please use extreme caution and notify the proper authorities at once. Obliviators are on hand to receive your call.’
The rumor was spreading around Hogwarts like wildfire as January came to a close. Lockhart was coming back to continue his ‘Valentine’s Day Tradition’.

It wasn't happy news; the bumps on everyone's heads had finally flattened out and they weren't ready for more insanity. (Harry, especially, wasn’t keen on the return of the card-carrying cupids.) Hogwarts seemed to be the hot spot for insane activity these days; Lockhart would fit right in.

He had escaped from St. Mungo's only a week ago, and, as the Daily Prophet report stated, was still in "a rather odd sort of mood."

Just how odd, no one was sure. But, knowing Lockhart, it would be quite alarming.

It was said he could only remember certain events in his life. Like when he played ‘ Spin the Butterbeer’ (a Wizard rendition of the classic Muggle game, ‘Spin the Bottle’), got his first kiss, when he got his second kiss (at Madame Malkin's Robes for all Occasions), his third kiss at…well…come to think of it, every kiss he had ever had. In fact, it seemed all he could remember had to do with kissing, flowers, robes, chocolates, and, most of all, love.

Harry was even more depressed with this news. Lockhart was officially a menace and now...now he was a love-obsessed menace.

As it drew closer and closer to Valentine's Day the tension in the air was thick as dragon skin and twice as tough. It wasn't with a light heart that Harry entered the Great Hall for breakfast on February the 14th.

Stepping into the hall, all he could do was gape. It was covered in pink and there was confetti falling at a rapid pace; doves were calling from the enchanted ceiling and dropping other things with the confetti. Oh no.

No…no…anything--anything but Lockhart…

Ron was horror-struck.

"Oh no," he gasped. "I was hoping it was just a rumor. This is too much."

Hermione flushed.

"Really? I think the decorations are rather nice. For now at least, I couldn't stand it every day, but the curtains really do blend well with the...."

Harry and Ron turned to her, mouths open, looking as though she had just proclaimed love for a Horntail.
Ron looked even worse for the wear (Harry didn’t think it was possible for him to look more horrified than he had moments before) and was positively green in the face.
Hermione blushed crimson, mumbled something to her toes, and sat at the table, pulling Hogwarts, A History from her schoolbag, burying herself in its pages.
~*~


The boys seated themselves at Gryffindor table as well and Ron shook his head, mumbling something about "girls", but Harry's attention was drawn to something else.

Looking out the window, he could see a piece of wood about as big around as a tree and hollowed out.
A boat.
No, it wasn’t a boat…it was a canoe and a rather odd canoe at that.
It was painted crimson and floating in midair, hovering 3 feet above the lake. Harry had grown rather weary of boats of all kinds. He couldn’t quite explain it. Perhaps it had something to do with Fred and George claiming that ‘those girls’ (also known at Hogwarts as the dreaded ‘Matchmakers’) had appeared in a boat of some kind.
Just then the doors burst open, and Lockhart strolled in, flanked by very odd-looking (but, overall, quite gorgeous) girls, all dressed in white. Lockhart was wearing an amused smile (though somehow looking totally dazed in the same instant) as he watched the confetti float gently from the ceiling.

The hall was silent for a minute, until a girl laughed.

It was one of his ‘Helpers’.

“Go on..." she said, prodding Lockhart in the back with a book.

She looked very amused, too, looking at all of the students. She laughed at some and grimaced at others, and when she came by Gryffindor table she even winked at Ron and Harry.

Harry felt a shiver go up his spine-she seemed to know all about him… he could tell with just that one friendly motion.

"What's wrong?" asked Ron, obviously coming out of shock just soon enough to realize something wasn’t right.

"I dunno. I think she knows me or- er- something," said Harry strangely, watching the dark-haired girl herd Lockhart, who was now drooling profusely, up to the staff table.

"Well, everyone knows you..." said Ron, only slightly joking.

Harry would have liked to explain the eerie feeling better, but decided he didn't know what to say.

Dumbledore shook the girls’ hands and lead them to seats of honor on the other side of the staff table. Several chairs had been added, four were filled, but at least five sat empty.

"Dran!" came a voice from the entrance hall. "I forgot to turn off the canoe!"

"Well, hurry and turn it off! We need all the gas we have to get back home!"

The attention was drawn to the door as the voices drew nearer. They were very loud, almost to the point of being obnoxious.

"ROAAAAAAAAARRRRRRR!" a loud call came from the entranceway.

Ron felt Harry flinch next to him, and Hermione looked up from Hogwarts, A History looking both shocked and annoyed.
~*~
Fred and George were gazing fixedly at the dark-haired girl seated next to Lockhart, who was now plucking a rather odd looking harp.
Dumbledore looked slightly amused, the corners of his mouth were twitching.

The girl with the book had fallen out of her chair in a fit of laughter.

"What?" Hermione was saying in a hushed voice. "What is this? They're all insane..."

Once more the doors burst open to reveal about four more girls, also dressed in white and laughing hysterically. Harry could pick out faces, three to be exact, that he remembered. The entire hall went quiet. And with all eyes upon them the girls calmed down eventually.
As the leader stepped forward nearly half the hall either ducked under tables or put their hands over their heads in fear.
Draco Malfoy began growling, baring all his teeth at them.
"Glad to see they remember us.... Such a warm welcome," said one of them.
The new girls took their seats gratefully after shaking hands with Dumbledore, and things were silent for a few minutes.
Harry gathered the same feeling from them as he had from the girl with the book. It was like they knew what he was thinking. They knew his feelings. Suddenly a sharp pain went through his scar and he smacked his hand to his forehead.
One last girl came running back into the hall, keys jingling in her hand.
A few daring people popped their heads up just long enough to see her run up to the table and fling the keys into the hands of the leader.
She too shook hands with Dumbledore, smiling nicely, and settled herself into a chair.
The hall was eerily quiet again, and the girls kept giving each other strange looks and knowing smiles, giggling.
It reminded Harry of way Hogwarts girls had acted before the Yule Ball the year before.
Most of the students had moved from the floor back up to their seats, although several kept their arms locked protectively over their heads.
The silence was menacing.
Suddenly shrill note came out of nowhere and filled the silent hall, Lockhart beamed; holding the instrument in his hand.
"All tuned up!" he said very happily to the girls.
They smiled back.
"So, play something then," said one of them in a whisper. "My ears hurt- it's too quiet..."
He strummed the golden harp gracefully, in tune that was slightly familiar to Harry.
"Once I was a boogie singer, playin' in a rock n' roll band, I never had no problems, burnin' down the one night stands..."
Harry gaped, as did most of his schoolmates as Lockhart continued singing.
"... Yeah they were dancin' and singin' and movin' to the groovin', and just when it hit me somebody turned around and shouted..." a very dazed look had come over his face and he stopped.
"I forget the rest," he mumbled looking disappointed.
"For Pete's sake!" yelled the short girl with slightly maroon hair. (Harry recognized her from the previous visit the Matchmakers had paid.)
"It's not that hard!"
Her accomplices giggled.
“‘They shouted, 'Play that funky music white boy!'" the girl sang. She rolled her eyes.
"Honestly..."
"Er- Sorry," said Lockhart with the same dazed look. "What shall I play then?"
The leader took something out of her pocket, causing the entire hall to gasp.
It was a sceptre.
She waved it a Lockhart threateningly.
"Absolutely nothing! No. more. singing." She looked totally exasperated, and Harry couldn’t blame her…who knew how long she had had to listen to Lockhart’s singing.
~*~
Harry sat at the table and sighed, he now knew things were even worse than he had dreamed…not only had Lockhart come to Hogwarts, but the Matchmakers were back and armed, too.
And they had brought friends.
"This is the last thing we need…" he muttered to Ron. Ron nodded weakly, his hair making an interesting contrast with his decidedly green face.
"Isn’t someone going to do anything?" Ron hissed anxiously. Harry shrugged.
The hall was almost totally silent. Everyone seemed to be waiting for something with trepidation, watching the head table with dubious expressions. There was no sound of chewing, giggling, or the pouring of pumpkin juice. There was no scrape of cutlery on the golden plates, and no sound of voices. In fact, there was no sign to contradict the idea that the entire hall had been Petrified.
Except from the Matchmakers. Their leader was absentmindedly tapping her sceptre on the table, and Harry was having very unpleasant memories, that somehow involved that table being his head.
One of the Matchmakers, a girl of around sixteen declared (in a strange accent that could have been Australian):
"You know, this is groovy fidgeness!"
Her companions burst out laughing.
Lockhart giggled uncertainly.
The girl’s cheeks flushed, and the leader of the Matchmakers reached across to pat her on the back.
"Don’t worry."
"Fizzness?" Lockhart said in a polite but bemused way. "Like that Muggle sweet I gave to my third ever date?"
He seemed to brighten considerably, and launched into the story (likely to be comparable to one of Professor Binns’ speeches—long, boring, and painful), but it was notlong-lived, for the Matchmakers had collapsed once again into their laughter.
Their laughter was not comparable to a pack of hyenas. It sounded human (and almost melodious, were it not for the fear it evoked in the minds of Hogwarts residents), for one, but it far outdid wild dogs in terms of loudness and hilarity.
"No—‘fidgeness’ !" the Matchmakers cried through their giggles.
Lockhart frowned, then scowled, looking like Valentine’s Day had been cancelled.
"Fidge. Mmm!" someone said.
It took a great many minutes for the girls to calm down (especially since it hadn’t been that funny anyway).
When they finally did straighten up, gasping for air and wiping tears of laughter from their cheeks, it wasn’t long before one of them swore.
"Hecfk!" It was the Australian again.
"What?" asked several of the Matchmakers.
"Ah, Gin, hate to ask you this, but where the hefck is your sceptre?"
"On the table." Answered Gin, matter-of-factly (Gin was often matter-of-fact like).
"No. It isn’t."
“Oh no.” Gin whipped around in her chair, looking desperately for her missing sceptre.
Sky (the maroon-haired girl) turned to her grimly and pointed to the Great Hall doors, lurid pink robes had just whipped around the corner and out of sight.
“Lockhart!”
~*~
Lockhart had left the staff table and was sweeping through the hall with a manic glint in his eyes, wielding the missing sceptre.
Panic ensued.
A mountain troll in the dungeon had nothing compared to Lockhart on the loose with the Sceptre of Doom (as Harry had mentally dubbed it).
Lockhart (having returned from the hall, realizing there were no victims) was heading for the Slytherin table. Its occupants leapt from their seats and backed away. Lockhart came ever nearer, waving the sceptre.
"I’ve heard of these!" he crowed.
That was too much for the Slytherins. They fled into the Entrance Hall, with Lockhart in pursuit.
The Matchmakers, wide-eyed, leapt from their seats and scrambled wildly after him. They made it to the Entrance Hall with am unbelievable speed--but it was too late.
Lockhart had cornered Draco Malfoy, and dealt him one massive blow with the sceptre, crying "Moaning Myrtle!"
Draco, however, didn’t seem to fall to the sceptre right way. He instead gave Lockhart a look of distaste and shook his head.
"I'm not going anywhere near that bloody creature! And if you hit me with that sceptre again, you barmy coot, I'm going to call my father!”
Lockhart didn’t seem to absorb any of this and laughed.
He flashed his smile again, "But the two of you would make a beautiful couple. You must!" Lockhart raised the sceptre high over his head.
"Stop!" screamed a raven-haired girl of about seventeen.
"You don't know of its power!" the Australian one added.
"But of course I do; dear children, now please--quiet while I do some match making!" Lockhart raised the sceptre again.
"You're using it all wrong! If you mess up any of our matchmaking…" the leader threatened, "You'll suffer dearly."
"And just how would I suffer?" Lockhart asked merrily, "chains and whips?"
"No," she replied. "Vespertine?" she called.
A small girl with short dark brown hair stepped out from behind the raven-haired girl. She smiled, "you called, Gin?"
"You'll punish me with that little thing?" Lockhart laughed, "That's hilarious! Just what can she do? Cute me to death?"
"Vesp, show him your stuff," Gin ordered. The little girl nodded and stepped up to Lockhart, pulling out a rather large old-looking book and flipped through the pages.
Lockhart peeked into the book, "you're going to read me poetry? How darling!"
Vespertine cleared her throat and began...

It flies on hideous night-wrought wings,
Its eyes staring pools of death.
Why, why, why does it torment me so?
I see it stare with its dead eyes. Sometimes
I think it may be an angel. But what
angel could have such a dark heart?
I hardly dare to speak its name.

Cornish Pixie.

It destroys me.
It destroys me.

Lockhart stood in front of the young girl for a moment, his head cocked slightly to the left.
The girls had burst into applause for their younger member. Lockhart shook his head, "I don't see the beauty in that, besides, no more poetry, I have business to do." He turned back to Malfoy and raised the sceptre a final time.
"Stop!" The girls all cried but it was far too late.
Lockhart's last swing had left Draco Malfoy lying on the floor, lifeless.
The group of girls stood in silence as they watched Draco's ghost rise up from the floor.
His eyes were longer filled with venom, and his lips, amazingly, didn’t curl into a painful grimace…his own death must have brought a considerable amount of happiness to him. He even smiled.
"Now," he said as he clapped his hands together, "where is my dearest Myrtle?"
"Sozo ijo no mono deshta," Vespertine whispered.
"What did she say?" asked another girl, who had an astonishing similarity to Gin.
"She said, 'that was different' and I can't agree with her more," replied Emo.
"Well," asked the Dead Draco, "where is she? My Myrtle. Where is she?"
The girls ran after, dumbfounded, as the ghostly Dead Draco floated down the corridor, calling “Myrtle, my flower, my petal, my honey bun!”
“That’s…that’s…that’s just…sick!”
The maroon haired girl slowly turned to face Lockhart.
“Do you realize what you have done?”
She turned to her leader, “Gin, we never should have brought him! What havoc is he going to cause next, eh? Crabbe and Neville? Lavender and Nearly-Headless-Nick? OLIVER AND FLINT?!”
“Remember the nice Vespertine’s rules?” the pointy-eared girl asked in a very annoying, patronizing voice, “The Sceptre is not a toy…--Remember? One must exercise extreme caution…”
Lockhart nodded slightly, though his face was quite vacant.
“Look, I know we’re all amazing and that, and we can do practically anything…”
The girls grinned at each other, looking quite proud.
“… but we can’t bring people back to life!”
The fidgers lost their look of triumph and sighed.
Gin finally spoke, “Well, it might not be such a bad thing that Draco’s dead. I mean…” she cut off suddenly.“Hey! Where’s he gone?”
“Who?” they chorused.
“Lockhart! And he’s got my dran Sceptre!”
The group looked everywhere for Lockhart, but unfortunately he wasn’t in Emo’s pocket, Kneazle’s purse or Gin’s hat.
“Um…right. We need to split up. You five go after Draco and well…do something! We’ll go after Lockhart. I think I know where he’ll be heading for.”
~*~
Five of the gang scurried down the hallway after the lovesick Malfoy, while the others followed the trail of chaos Lockhart had left behind.

They saw a Slytherin and Hufflepuff smooching by the Transfiguration classroom, George Weasley and Pansy Parkinson holding hands by the library, and, to their disgust, Professors Trelawney and Vector snogging on the stairway.

The path of terror led straight up to the Astronomy Tower.
“Noooooo! He can’t have gone in there! Do you realize how many couples will be in there? It’s Valentine’s Day, for goodness sakes’- the most loved-up day of the year! And he’s in there creating havoc!”
“If I ever get my hands on Lockhart, he’s going to lose more than his memory! Just you wait!”
“Calm down, calm down. We can’t all go barging in there upsetting everyone!” the elfish girl said. “Look, all we have to do is go in there, see what damage has been done, not panic, find out where Lockhart is, get the Sceptre back, kill him painfully and slowly, and put the whole of Hogwarts back to rights. We’ll probably get kicked out of Hogwarts and told never to return, but at least everyone will be happy. Well, apart from Malfoy, and possibly us. Not so bad once you put it into perspective, eh? No problem for us!”
The others looked at her as though she had just told them they were about to create world peace.
“Yeah, Anna. No problem,” a taller girl replied sarcastically.
“Come on.” Gin said finally, “Might as well see the mayhem he’s caused.”
They pushed open the door to reveal a deserted room. It was worse than they had imagined. Luckily most of the couples had escaped (presumably, they ran for their lives when they saw a deranged madman wielding a sceptre) but there were still a few dazed victims of Lockhart’s rampage.
Among them, sadly, were Fred and Angelina. But they hadn’t fallen in love with each other. Fred was kissing a confused, extremely tall Hufflepuff and had a large red lump on the top of his head, while Angelina was snuggling into the arms of a Ravenclaw second year.
“Ewwwwww! Please tell me that this is all a dream!”
But unfortunately this wasn’t a dream, or in fact an awfully terrible nightmare.
It was very, very real.
The group made their way through the odd couples, either biting their knuckles in fits of laughter or trying not to be violently sick. The girls were starting to get extremely annoyed with Lockhart.
“Lockhart! If I get my hands on you…ughhh! You’ll wish you never left St. Mungo’s!”
“Um…wasn’t it our idea to bring him here in the first place?”
“Well…well… technically…yes… but I always thought it was a stupid idea!”
“Shut up! Listen!” Gin cut through the chatter with her ‘Cap’nly voice’ (it never failed to get everyone’s attention).
They were heading for the upper most part of the tower, up the tiny spiral staircase.
“Um…listen to what?”
“Shhhh!”
The sound of a harp being strummed came from the summit of the steps, and a loud voice singing Beatles songs.
“Can’t buy me love…love…la…ala…Oh blast it! Um…Love, love me do! You know that I love youuuuuuu!!!…Um… She loves you! Yeh, yeh, yeh! … No…She loves me? …No… I love me? … OH! What are the words?”
“Well,” Vespertine said, grinning, “He may have caused havoc and he really can’t sing, but he does have good taste in music!”
They climbed the 3,247 steep steps to the top (Team Fidge can assure you that this is a correct calculation- they counted themselves) and saw Lockhart sitting by the window looking very pathetic. Gin reached over to grab the Sceptre but Lockhart moved it out of reach.
“Excuse me! I’ll have that, thank you very much! You’ve caused enough chaos for one day!”
But Lockhart started to cry. Big, fat tears began to roll down his pallid cheeks. The girls almost felt sorry for him, but then remembered what he had done to Fred and Angelina, and glared.
“I’m sorry. I’m very sorry. I didn’t mean to upset everyone. I just wanted people to be happy. I thought making people fall in love would be easy, but it wasn’t. Oh, I’m so very sorry!”
Then he started wailing all over again.
“Oh, pull yourself together, man!” Gin said firmly, “ Of course you can’t use the Sceptre! You don’t have the knowledge, you see? But that’s why it’s mine! M-I-N-E! MINE! So keep your greasy little mitts off it in future! Geez! You’d think understanding that was rocket science! Give me the Sceptre NOW!”

Gin reached for the Sceptre. Lockhart clutched it tightly in his arms, staring at Gin in wide-eyed fear. Then he let out a loud sob and buried his face in his arms, positively wailing. A few of the girls threw their hands up over their ears to drown out the horrible noise he was making, but the maroon-haired girl bravely stepped up.

"Oh, come off it," she snapped, causing Lockhart to peek up at her cautiously. "You're a terrible matchmaker, and you're ruining everything! There's no way we're gonna let you keep this up! And stop crying, you're getting the Sceptre all wet." She reached out to take it from him, but he immediately dropped the "I'm so sorry" act and sprang to his feet.

He dashed around behind her, raising the Sceptre high above his head.

"Now, now," said Lockhart, with a maniacal glint in his eyes, "that's no way for a lady to behave - especially on this, the most joyous holiday! The day of love ! I shall teach you to appreciate the power of true love."

The girls all stared at him, terrified, none of them daring to move lest he should do something rash. But he merely answered them by saying, "Don't fret, I'm sure you shall thank me in a moment." He let out a fiendish cackle. "You, little girl, are to fall madly in love with the first man you see!"

"Sky!" Gin called out. "NOOOO!"

~*~

"Cover your eyes, Sky!" called the girl with the sonnet book, in a last desperate attempt to save the maroon-haired girl.

Sky squeezed her eyes shut tight and began blindly running around in circles, trying to get away from Lockhart, but it was too late. Taking aim, Lockhart brought the Sceptre crashing down on her head. At that very moment, a voice from behind them made everyone jump.

"What is going on here?"

Everyone turned to look - all except for Sky, who was still running around in circles with her eyes closed (thank goodness she hadn't completely lost her senses).

Snape was making his way up the spiral staircase, his dark robes billowing behind him. "Well?" he snarled. "What is the meaning of this? I demand to know!"

His sour gaze lingered on Lockhart, who was still grinning crazily, and his upper lip curled into a vicious sneer.

No one answered him. "You there!" Snape cried, walking forward and seizing the maroon-haired girl by the shoulders. "Stop that nonsense, right this instant! Open your eyes!"

"Don't do it, Sky!" cried a blonde girl fearfully, ready to throw a piece of stale fidge.

She caught Gin's eye and nodded toward Lockhart, who had forgotten all about the Sceptre.

If Gin caught him off guard, she'd be able to get her prized weapon back... she stepped back slowly, silently, circling around Lockhart and reaching out to seize the Sceptre...

Sky shook her head furiously. "I won't!" she cried. "You can't make me!" She swung a fist out in Lockhart's direction. He let out a yelp as her fist collided with his nose; if he'd only been a bit more sane, he would have realized how bad the pain was, but instead, he just chuckled.

"Yes, open your eyes, you silly little thing!" giggled Lockhart. Sky began to squeal, but stopped abruptly as Lockhart brought the Sceptre down upon her head once more.

"Dran!" thought Gin as the Sceptre was lifted just out of her reach. Then, along with the other girls who were standing by and watching the scene unfold, her eyes widened with the sudden realization that something much, much worse was going on.

Sky was no longer squeezing her eyes shut. She was gaping at Snape with a dreamy expression on her face.

"NO!" cried Gin in outrage. Sky had fallen for the first male she set eyes upon, and it just happened to be the meanest, nastiest Potions master Hogwarts had ever seen.

"That's it!" shouted the short girl with the pointed ears. "You've gone too far!"

"I, Lady Cadogan, shall chase him down with my Stale Fidge!" shouted the blonde girl, brandishing a plate of incredibly stale, hard-as-rock fidge.

"And I'll punish him with my Sonnet Book of Death!" cried Vespertine, ready to strike, her green eyes flashing maliciously.

Another girl stepped forward. "I'm going to get him back once and for all with my bad typing skills!" she cackled.

Everyone fell silent.

"Er, you kind of need a computer in order to make typing errors, BlackSwan," whispered a taller girl.

The one called BlackSwan didn't seem to care. "What differenc deos tht mke, Emo?" she yelled. "Oh, hecfk! Le'ts get him! Tiaras on full-blast, everyone!"

"CHARGE!" chorused the entire team.

"This is for you, Sky!"

The girls followed directly behind Lockhart as he fled with the Sceptre, shouting, "Adolescent females on rampage! ADOLESCENT FEMALES ON RAMPAGE!"

They raced down the stairs of the Astronomy Tower, weapons in hand and fighting with all they had.

Lady Cadogan threw her stale fidge as hard as her arms could manage, Vespertine viciously poked Lockhart with her Sonnet Book of Death, and BlackSwan uesd hre cad tping skills to the bestt of ther avility.

Emo would have joined in, too, of course, but a Quidditch-starved Oliver was nowhere to be found on the grounds of Hogwarts School that day.

The girls must have chased Lockhart halfway across the grounds by the time he finally broke down.

“Okay…” Lockhart cried, throwing himself to the ground, his chest seizing with sobs. “I surrender! I just wanted to make this Valentine’s Day the best one ever… I was just trying to make the world a better place! I was trying to help! Really, I was… I just…” Lockhart looked up at the girls. His face was pitiful.

“I just want to spread love as easily as you do!”

The Fidgers looked sympathetic. “Well… well, maybe we could give you a second chance…” said a girl with long, brown hair. “If you promise to be good…”

There was a murmur of agreement from the rest of the team- the rest of the team, except for one.

“NO!” shouted the Cap’n.

“Look at you!” she screamed, motioning to her fellow friends and accomplices.

“I can’t believe you! Just accepting him into your arms right away… look what he has done! To Fred! To George, Angelina, even Trelawney, for goodness’ sake! But most of all, remember what he did to Sky…”

“Yeah, I suppose you’re right…” they agreed.

“Of course she’s right! She’s Cap’n Gin!” shouted a bespectacled raven-haired girl.

Lockhart looked uneasy. “But… but I was trying to better the world! Really, I didn’t mean any harm…”

“By bonking Sky in the head? You knew what you were doing, you… you meanie !” Anna spit this word as angrily as any Italian elf could.

“What? Someone bonked Sky?” asked a girl in what seemed to be a Scottish accent. Everyone spun around.

“Arabella, JK, Alanna, Kneazle, Sagittaire!” Everyone welcomed the girls warmly and happily.

“How is Draco fairing? Did you do something about… them?”

“Well, at first we were having quite a difficult time with Malfoy. We weren’t quite sure what to do- we couldn’t bring Draco back to life, and, well, we didn’t see the point of trying to stop him from falling for Myrtle. She was having quite a good time- and the students thought it was hilarious. We were in the middle of a discussion about exactly what to do, when we heard Myrtle make an interesting proposition…” JK grinned.

“What? What happened?” asked the Captain.

“Myrtle asked him if he would go with her to Greek Isles, and spend eternity there together…”

“And he accepted, I’m guessing?”

“Of course. Our problem was solved right then and there. And now, we never have to see Myrtle or Draco, ever again! Touch wood…”

“And thank goodness for that!” Everyone laughed, their mood finally turning up with the unexpected good news.

“ However- you heard us right… Sky was bonked. And quite hard, too…”

Everyone was silent. Finally, the blonde Kansan broke the silence.

“Who? Who was it?”

The voice that spoke was barely a whisper. “Snape.”

Whatever they were expecting, it had not been that- the girls that had not been in the Astronomy Tower all jumped. “No… it can’t be true…I can stomach most ships- V/V, B/C, T/M… but Snape/Sky? I just… just can’t believe it… Please say that it’s a lie! ”

Vespertine bowed her head silently. “It’s true,” she muttered. “It’s all true!”

Suddenly, the greasy-haired, hook-nosed Slytherin potions professor came, ending the silence and knocking several of the girls to the ground.

“Come here, Sevvie Baby! I love you! Come back! Why aren’t you coming to me! Are you sad? I’ll make you feel better!”

But then, as quickly as she had come, she was out of earshot.

“Wow… that was… scary. And horrible. Gin, where is the Sceptre? We need to help her as soon as possible- before it’s too late.”

“Actually, Lockhart was just about to--”

Gin stopped.

He was gone.

The entire team began looking around frantically for Lockhart, but he was nowhere to be seen.

“Honestly,” exclaimed Vespertine, “he’s wearing bright pink robes and we’ve managed to lose him how many times now?”

“Look! There he goes!” Alanna was pointing across the grounds back toward the castle.

With Gin in the lead, all of the fidgers set off on a mad dash after Lockhart, who had just disappeared into the entrance hall of Hogwarts.

They followed him around corner after corner, up stairway after stairway, but he had a fair lead and was nowhere in sight by the time they reached the Gryffindor portrait hole exhausted and out of breath.

“No! Not that! Let him go anywhere but there!” moaned Lady, staring at what was obviously the work of the crazed bonker.

Fat Lady and Sir Cadogan sat in the portrait, snogging away, obviously not noticing that Lockhart had opened the portrait hole and gone straight into the Gryffindor common room. “Do you have any idea what he could do in there?”

Every fidger’s face paled at the thought, but Kneazle bravely stepped forward and pulled the portrait hole open wide enough for everyone to see inside.

~*~

Gin gasped, BlackSwan screamed, and Emo fainted dead away.

What they saw was absolute chaos.

Dean Thomas was running after Katie Bell, Alicia Spinnet and Neville were snogging by the fire, Seamus was flirting shamelessly with a first year, and Lavender and Parvati had cornered very scared looking Creevey brothers.

As soon as they had recovered from the initial shock, the entire team entered the common room, occasionally glancing around and trying not to cry at the sight of some of the pairings scattered around the room.

“Look,” gasped JK, “There he is!” And there he was. Lockhart, in all his Valentine’s Day glory, had cornered Harry, Ron, Hermione, and Ginny and was wielding the Sceptre menacingly.

Lady gasped. “You guys,” she whispered, “I’ve just thought of something. Lockhart, he isn’t…H/H… is he?”

Kneazle looked like she was about to be sent to Azkaban.

Vespertine started to hyperventilate.

Emo regained consciousness only to lose it again.

Cap’n Gin decided to take action.

“I’m not about to stand here and let Lockhart give those H/Hers a hefckn basis for their fics! We need to get my sceptre back, and we need to get it back now! We can’t let an imbecile like Lockhart ruin our Valentine’s Day! We are Team Fidge, the matchmakers, the sceptre beaters, the bonkers, and most important of all, the H/G and R/Hers!”

Team Fidge stood, mouths agape, staring at their Cap’n.

Emo looked dazed.

“I always knew she was called ‘Mione at Heart’ for a reason,” Kneazle muttered.

The bonkers turned around as they heard a scream that sounded remarkably banshee-like. The sceptre was descending towards Harry’s head, and Ginny was nowhere in sight.

Anna (whose ears had already been assaulted more than three times that day) leapt at Lockhart. The rest of the team followed her lead--which was how all of them came to be tangled upon Harry, who had just been bonked with the dreaded ‘Sceptre of Doom’.

In ordinary circumstances, he would have been quite happy to have a group of gorgeous girls tackle him, but now all he could think about was Hermione.

“Hermione, where are you my honey bun?” he cried.

Kneazle promptly puked on one of Alanna’s fragrant shoes situated under her nose. The rest of the matchmakers looked like they were about to do the same.

Team Fidge managed to untangle themselves and left Saggitaire, Vespertine and JK plonked on Harry’s lap so he couldn’t escape to Hermione.

The fidgers realized they needed ammunition. It was time they raided Zonko’s – or the next best thing- George and Fred’s dorm.

~*~**~*~

And so it came to pass that they were sneaking up the stairs to the boys’ dormitory, surprised at how easy this actually was. They passed George on the stairs, but he was too busy snogging a second-year Slytherin girl to care. Lee Jordan, however, was unaffected by the Sceptre.

“Stop!” he cried. “This is a boys’ dormitory, and you don’t look much like boys to me.”

“Out of the way, Lee,” said Gin imperiously. Usually, she would have been far more polite to George’s friend, but she was a woman on a mission.

Lee moved, blocking the door. “What’s this all about, anyway?” he asked suspiciously. “They say Lockhart’s back -- and something about a sceptre -- and Fred’s going around snogging some Hufflepuff…”

“We know,” said Kneazle with a sigh.

“And we’re trying to fix it,” Alanna added. “So we need into your dormitory. Now.”

Lee looked at them -- ten girls, ranging in ages and sizes, standing stubbornly in front of him -- and sighed a sigh to match Kneazle’s.

“Desperate times call for desperate measures,” Alanna continued. “Three of our priceless Fidgers are sitting on Harry’s lap, trying to stop him from getting to Hermione.”

Lee immediately assumed a revolted look. “Like you said, Fred’s in there snogging a Hufflepuff. And our own Sky is currently chasing Snape through the snow, calling for her ‘Snapey-Wapey’s’ return to her loving arms. Dude.”

Lee’s revolted look deepened before he suddenly smiled.

“What do you need?”

“Good boy. That’s the Fidge spirit.”

*~*~*~*~*~

Ten minutes later, their arms loaded with Dungbombs, Exploding Pillows, and several nose-biting teacups, the group snuck back down the stairs.

“Our first job,” Lady C declared, wielding her stale fidge, “is to regain the sceptre.”

“No! Let’s get Sky back!” someone else protested. The nine girls quibbled among themselves for a few minutes, before Gin stood up.

“We need Sky to get the sceptre back,” she said, and everyone agreed.

But what could they do?

*~*~*~*~

A few minutes later, having tied Harry to a chair and regained the other three team members, they were chasing Sky across the Hogwarts grounds, panting with exertion. “Sevvie!” she was wailing. “Come to me! I love everything about you -- your gleaming hair, your skin in that lovely shade of yellow, your curious odor of boiled squid! Come back, Severus my love!”

Gin hid her face in despair for a moment, and the other members began to fear that it was a lost cause.

“Come on!” yelled JK and Alanna at the same time, then looked at each other and burst out laughing.

Vesp waved the Sonnet Book of Death; Lady Cadogan wielded her stale fidge; and Kneazle grabbed a tree branch for good measure. Between them, the thirteen Fidgers managed to wrestle Sky to the ground, hit her over the head, and feed her some Fizzing Whizbees. While it didn’t cure her -- only the Magic Sceptre could do that -- it managed to subdue her to the point where she forgot about Snape. Momentarily.

“Mobilicorpus,” Arabella Figg cried, and Sky floated along behind them. It was an odd and strangely moving sight, and every girl was struck with a strange conviction that they must regain the sceptre and put things to rights immediately. Perhaps it was because Sky was quiet.

“Target sighted!” Anna cried, leading the way into Hogwarts. Lockhart was brandishing the Sceptre in the middle of the Great Hall, and seemed to be about to turn it on McGonagall.

“NO!” Alanna screamed. “NO Dumbledore/McGonagall! NO!” But before she could say anything, Lockhart had turned to her instead, and was lowering the scepter slowly, a manic glint in his eyes…


And before Lockhart had a chance to wreak any more havoc, the Fidgers descended. They had had quite enough.

They subdued his perfume (which had managed to make many quite light headed) with a few Dungbombs, and stuffed his mouth with Sugar Quills.

Finally, they wrenched the sceptre from his hands and left him with Snape, a fitting punishment.


It was time to put things to rights at Hogwarts.

Gin immediately came to charge, organized a short meeting, and the Figders came to the decision that their powers were most needed in Gryffindor Tower to begin.

Upon apparating in the Gryffindor commons (“But you can’t!” cried Hermione.) they assessed the situation.

Harry was resting listlessly in his binds, staring at Hermione who was sitting across the room composing a ballad for Seamus.

Gin tisked to herself and went about the room bonking each person (some needing more hits than others), setting things straight.

Hours later an exhausted team collapsed into their boat, rubbing sore arms (well, they had to hold them down while Gin bonked).

“Is everything straight then?” Arabella asked.

“Yesh. Everything…” The others replied, sighing.

“Except for Sky.” Gin finished.

“Can she be helped Gin?” Alanna asked, looking grave.

“Yesh. I believe. Who has her?” Gin surveyed the canoe. Kneazle and Vespertine waved from the back, “She’s here.”

Sky was lying near the back of the boat, every so often rolling over and muttering, ‘Snapey-poo.’ Or ‘Sevie.’

Gin advanced on her slowly, raising the sceptre gravely. The fidgers clenched their eyes shut as Gin brought it down Sky’s head with a plunk.

They all watched in revered silence as Sky’s lashes fluttered and she rose up slowly.

“What in the bloody hell just happened?!”

They all jumped up and wailed.

“Sky! You’re back!”

Gin, in particular, enveloped her First Mate in a large hug, absolutely screeching with joy.

And so our story ends. The Fidgers, having restored Hogwarts (and themselves), departed form Hogwarts, their newly awakened First Mate and jovial Cap’n steering the Canoe out into the night, heading off into their next expidition, never knowing what would happen next.

“Hey Gin?”

“Yesh, Swan?”

“Wouldn’t it be lovely to do some matching at Beaxbatons?”

Gin turned around, aghast, as the other girls giggled.

“Just kidding.”

~*~*~

Nil. Naught. The End. The sonnets have been stated. The fidgers have flown. And the sceptres have been silenced. Until next time, that is.

© 2002 Team Fidge

//
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