The Sugar Quill
Author: EilonwyG  Story: Sugar Quills: Under The Influence  Chapter: Default
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"Do you know much about Hogsmeade?" asked Hermione keenly. "I've read it's the only entirely non-Muggle settlement in Britain-"

"Yeah, I think it is," said Ron in an offhand sort of way, "but that's not why I want to go. I just want to get inside Honeydukes!"

"What's that?" said Hermione.

"It's this sweetshop," said Ron, a dreamy look coming over his face, "where they've got everything . . . . Pepper Imps-they make you smoke at the mouth-and great fat Chocoballs full of strawberry mousse and clotted cream and really excellent sugar quills, which you can suck on in class and just look like you're thinking what to write next-"

Sugar Quills were the greatest idea in the world. It was marvelous how something so sweet could make you look so smart. Ron wished he knew who invented them so he could thank him. They were every student's dream . . .well, his at least.

~ * ~ * ~ * ~ * ~ * ~ * ~ * ~ * ~ * ~ * ~

Ah, this was the stuff. Sugary goodness drifted passed his taste buds. Ron sucked again, melting more of the quill's candy. He propped his head up on his elbow, letting his eyes fall out of focus, all the while keeping them on Professor McGonagall.

She had gone into explaining something or another. The words she spoke reached his ear, knocked politely, desiring admittance to his brain. When no answer came they pounded irritably and still there was no response. Fortunately, they found the door unlocked and entered. Unfortunately, the door lead down the hall, to another unlocked door, out the other side of his head. Frustrated and annoyed, the words gave Ron dirty looks and plotted revenge.

Ron savored the taste in his mouth before he swallowed. Yes, these certainly were the best-

"Mr. Weasley!"

McGonagall's words lay panting in exhaustion at the bottom of Ron's brain. They had finally found a tiny opening in the hallway and had spent several minutes rattling around before these particular words-sharp and heavy-had finally awakened him to consciousness.

Ron opened his mouth in surprise, then reluctantly took out the sugar quill to speak. "Yes, Professor?"

McGonagall's eyes behind her square spectacles examined him. "I find it astounding and amazing . . ." She studied him more closely. "Were you actually paying attention for once, Mr. Weasley?"

Ron blinked. "Huh?"

"It is obvious you were thinking hard about this lesson by the way you were chewing your quill. I am impressed."

The blank void in Ron's head gave way to a feeling of pride. He smiled modestly. "Well, I try, Professor."

"You will be sure the Headmaster will hear of this. He will be very pleased." McGonagall actually beamed at him.

All around him, Ron's classmates clapped their approval. Harry was going wild. "My best friend, you know!" Hermione gave him a shy smile. Ron grinned at her as everyone patted him on the back, feeling as if he'd won the Quidditch World Cup.

Quite pleased, Ron placed the sugar quill back into his mouth and let the tingle of sugar tease his tongue.

Tangy, sweet, mouth watering. Ron's sugar quill melted slowly in his mouth as he sat with Harry and Hermione in the library-he couldn't quite remember how he'd gotten there, but that didn't matter. All thoughts to their history paper had been forgotten in the advent of sugar. He stared, dreamily and contentedly, his mouth slack. A book lay open before him, and though it seemed his eyes were upon it pages, in truth they stared passed it, passed the table, passed the floor.

"Ah, Mr. Weasley," came a voice that miraculously found an entrance to his brain. "Studying hard, I see."

Ron looked up to see Professor Dumbledore. He pushed his vacant thoughts away and held his sugar quill, as if ready to write something truly scholarly. He smiled. "That's right, Professor."

"Excellent! I've talked with Professor McGonagall and I see she's right. You are very intelligent."

Ron shrugged. "It's a gift, Professor."

Dumbledore leaned in secretively. "Because of your intellectual demonstration, I've decided to make you a Prefect."

Ron gaped. "Prefect?!"

"Hmm, you're right. That doesn't suit you." Dumbledore rubbed his chin. "Head Boy, then."

Had Ron still had the sugar quill in his mouth he would have lost it when his jaw dropped. "Head Boy," Ron murmured to himself. A lopsided grin formed on his face. "Wicked."

Dumbledore pinned a Head Boy badge on Ron's robes. All over the library came ooo's and ahh's, Madam Pince joining in on the congratulations.

"Head Boy, Ron!" Harry exclaimed. "I never could have done it! Good show!"

Hermione leapt into his arms and kissed him passionately on the lips. "Oh, Ron," she said in a throaty, seductive voice, that didn't sound like Hermione at all. "I am so proud of you! You're the only boy for me."

Ron stuck the sugar quill roguishly between his teeth and pulled Hermione toward him with and arm around her waist. "It's you and me, Hermione."

"Oh, Ron!" She melted into him.

Percy came up and grabbed his free hand, pumping it wildly in excitement. "You're definitely smarter than me, Ron. Would you like me to shine your badge?"

Ron waved a hand away, only to be handed a Firebolt broomstick. Oliver Wood looked ecstatic. "We've taken a vote and we've decided you should be Quidditch Captain!"

The rest of the Gryffindor team cheered as Oliver made this announcement. "Excellent," said Ron, accepting the position. The cheers grew louder.

Malfoy fell to his knees next to Ron. His looked up at him with terror on his face. "Is there anything I can do for you, Sire? I live only to serve you, Sir."

Lazily, Ron shoved Malfoy onto his back by stepping on his face. "Very good, Sir."

Hermione hugged him tighter. "You're so brave, Ron!"

Filibuster Fireworks, set off by the twins, climaxed this most perfect of moments. Ron felt giddy, the sugar getting to his system. He worked his tongue over the edge of the quill-definitely the sweetest thing he'd ever tasted. He chewed the end thoughtfully, wanting to burst out laughing due to his sugar high.

On impulse, Ron dipped Hermione and kissed her, all the while everyone chanted his name. "Ron! Ron! Ron!"

~ * ~ * ~ * ~ * ~ * ~ * ~ * ~ * ~ * ~ * ~

"Ron! Ron! Hello, Ron!"

Ron blinked. Harry and Hermione watched him worriedly from across the Gryffindor table. Harry's hand was still on his shoulder from where he'd shaken him. "Ron, you okay?"

"Huh?" A partially chewed sugar quill fell from his mouth.

"We lost you for a moment," Hermione said. "What were you thinking of?"

"Er . . . nothing." Ron picked up his sugar quill and looked at it as if he'd never seen it before.

Hermione shook her head. "Well, don't do that again. You scared us."

Ron smiled at her reassuringly. "Sure thing." He wrapped his tongue around his sugar quill and bit the end of it, savoring its sweetness. Yes, sugar quills really were the best candy . . .

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