The Sugar Quill
Author: Booklovr  Story: The Invasion of the Muses  Chapter: Default
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It was a bright, clear, beautiful Halloween afternoon

The Invasion of the Muses

By Booklovr

 

It was a bright, clear, beautiful Halloween afternoon.  The sky was blue, the clouds white and puffy, with the sun beaming down on Hagrid’s fifth year Gryffindor/Slytherin Care of Magical Creatures class.  The leaves on the trees had all changed to brilliant orange-red, so that the Forbidden Forest now strongly resembled a Weasley family reunion.  Hagrid had just received an owl and had left the class, dashing into his hut to read whatever had come.

 

The students stood, staring nervously at the wooden crate in front of them.  Hagrid had taken the top off, but had left before telling them what the day’s lesson was about, except that he had found a “rare an’ in’erestin’” creature.  This translated as “highly dangerous,” so most of the class hung back, hoping whatever was in the crate was tired and not hungry.

 

Harry was surveying the Slytherins in puzzlement.  While he usually didn’t pay much attention to the rival House, he thought that there were more of them than usual.  He stood on his toes, trying to get a headcount, when he noticed something even more curious.  Sitting under a tree at the edge of the Forbidden Forest was a silvery, ghost-like girl who appeared to be scribbling furiously in a notebook.  Harry opened his mouth to say something, when a gasp ran through the gathered students, snapping his attention back to the crate.

 

“It moved!” Hermione squealed, grabbing Harry’s arm.  “Did you see that?  Something in there moved!”  She seemed to realize she was clinging to Harry and let go.

 

The crate shook, lurched, then tipped, and out walked….

 

…A small, white rabbit.  It blinked, glanced at the students, and began nibbling grass.

 

“A rabbit?” Ron demanded.  “We were all worked up over a fluffy bunny?”  He started forward.

 

“STOP!” Hermione cried, grabbing his bicep.  Then she frowned and dropped her hands, bewildered.

 

“What?” Ron pointed.  “Don’t tell me you’re scared of that!”

 

Hermione rolled her eyes.  “Honestly, Ron, haven’t you ever seen Monty Python and the Holy Grail?”

 

“Uh, no.”

 

Before she could explain, one of the Slytherin boys Harry was sure he had never seen before stepped towards the rabbit.  Suddenly, it lunged, grabbing the boy’s neck.  Seconds later he lay on the ground in a puddle of blood.

 

“AAAAAAAHHHHH!”  Shouting and screaming, students ran in all directions, fleeing from the fluffy menace.  Draco Malfoy didn’t move fast enough, and the rabbit leaped for the back of his neck.

 

“Noooooooooo!” Pansy Parkinson wailed, falling to her knees.

 

Fortunately for Draco, he was wearing a high-collared robe, which he quickly ripped off, the rabbit falling with it.  Draco stumbled away, scowling at the heap of cloth and fur while he rubbed the back of his neck to ensure there was no permanent damage.

 

Hermione gasped, staring open mouthed at Draco.  Harry noticed that Draco was now wearing a pair of leather trousers and no shirt, and was surprisingly muscular.  He and Ron exchanged a worried glance.

 

“Uh, Hermione?” Harry wondered, waving in front of her face.  “Are you okay?”

 

She shook her head, now completely perplexed, at least until she noticed the strange girl writing under the tree.  “Oh, no,” Hermione wailed.  Then she turned and ran towards Hogwarts.

 

“Hermione!  Where—wait!”  But she was already gone.  Harry turned back to Ron.  “Did she just run away?  Is Hermione now cutting class?”

 

Ron looked no less shocked.  “Yeah…I reckon so…think we should follow her?”

 

Harry glanced at Malfoy’s robes, where the rabbit had almost worked itself free, then around at the panicking mass of students.  “Yeah.  Sounds like a good idea.  But where did she go?”

 

 “The library,” said Ron and Harry at the same time.

 

~*~*~*~

 

For once, Hermione had not gotten as far as the library.  She was standing in the Entrance Hall, gazing up at he ceiling.  “No,” she murmured.  “It-it can’t be…”

 

“What is it?” Harry wondered.

 

Hermione jumped and turned around.  “Look!” she cried, pointing up.

 

Harry did.  A thick, gray mist seemed to cover the ceiling.  “You mean that’s not normal?” he wondered.  “I thought it was another of those wizard things I never understand.”

 

“I thought it was Peeves again,” Ron supplied helpfully.

 

“And I didn’t notice because I’ve always got my nose in a book!” Hermione wailed.  “Those are…fanfiction writer muses!”

 

Ron gasped.  “You mean…this is a fanfiction?”

 

Hermione groaned.  “Worse.  It’s Halloween, and unrest is high among the fanfiction writers in the world.  The wall between our worlds has weakened, allowing their muses to come here and directly affect us.  It all makes sense now.  The random movie reference, the unnatural attraction to every male character…” she trailed off, her face turning red.

 

“Who’s attracted to every male character?” Ron wondered.

 

“All that’s missing are the brilliant ideas that spontaneously form in our heads, and those plot-holes where nothing happens for several hours….”

 

~*~*~*~

 

Several hours later, Ron, Hermione, and Harry showed up for the Halloween Feast.

 

“Whoa,” said Ron.  “Does anyone else feel like we just stepped through a plot-hole?”

 

“So,” said Harry unsurely, “why can this only happen on Halloween?”

 

“Because something happens on Halloween that doesn’t happen any other night of the year.” Hermione said solemnly.

 

“Strong magical forces?” Harry guessed.

 

“No…all the Hogwarts students gather en masse, with no strict plot requirements.  On Halloween, anything can happen.”

 

Suddenly the gray mist on the ceiling condensed and began taking the form of hundreds of men and women, boys and girls, scribbling in notebooks or typing on floating computers.

 

“Are those…the mooses?” Ron asked.

 

Hermione hit him on the arm.  Honestly, Ron, muses.  And no, it’s worse.  The muses have done their work.  Those are the fanfiction writers being inspired…as we are channeled to them, they are channeled here…which means…”

 

The doors to the Great Hall burst open and in rushed a crowd of unbelievable beautiful fifteen-year-old girls wearing very revealing robes.  Many shouted in American accents and waved to the boys, while more than half immediately made a beeline for Harry.

 

“It’s…the Mary-Sues!”  However, Harry didn’t hear anymore as he was swarmed on all sides by raving, gorgeous girls fighting for his attention, waving, flirting, blowing kisses until…

 

…Suddenly, his head cleared.  Ron, Harry and Hermione were now standing someplace in the dungeons.  “What…how…”

 

“I got you away from those mooses,” Ron said proudly.

 

“Muses,” Hermione corrected

 

“Whatever.  I had the brilliant idea that they can only affect us if they’re nearby, so I dragged you two away while I still had a clear head.”

 

“You came up with that plan all by yourself?  Oh, Ron…” Hermione gushed, pulling him into a hug.  Ron grinned, quite pleased, and turned very red.

 

Harry looked up and wasn’t surprised to see a group of silver muse-writers wearing badges that read “W.A.I.L.” and “Good Ship R/H” floating over their heads.  “Hey,” muttered Harry.  “Aren’t those…?”

 

“Shut up, Harry,” Ron said through clenched teeth.

 

Hermione pulled away.  “So, how do we get these muses out of here so we can return to our lives?”

 

Harry thought for a minute.  “Didn’t you say this was caused by boredom?  Maybe…”

 

Just then, a crowd composed of every witch, wizard, student, and muse-writer in Hogwarts charged down the stairs to the dungeon.  The muse-writers pointed crying, “There they are!  DON’T LET THEM GET AWAY!”

 

“This way!  Hurry!” Harry shouted, leading his two friends, who were now holding hands, through the dungeons.  “It should be…yes!  YES!  Here it is!”

 

“Wow, where’d this come from?” Ron wondered.

 

Honestly, haven’t you read Hogwarts, A History yet?  It’s the first thing in there!”

 

Ron’s eyes widened.  “Well.  I’ll have to get right on that.  It suddenly sounds much more interesting.  How’d you know about this, Harry?”

 

“I’m the title character, remember?”

 

In front of them stood a big door, labeled “J.K. Rowling.”  Harry pulled the door open; inside was a nondescript canvas bag full of…something.

 

“Not supposed to use these until next summer, of course, but this is an emergency,” Harry muttered, levitating the sack.  He guided it into the hallway and opened it up.  “Oi!  Writers!  Come and get ’em!”

 

The silvery crowd of muse-writers froze, and a cry rose from them, as one voice:

 

“ORDER OF THE PHOENIX!”

 

Together, they dove towards the bag, full to the brim with the thick books.  Immediately on touching a book, each muse-writer vanished, taking the coveted prize, until the air was clear of their presence.

 

Slowly, the Mary Sues vanished, and the Hogwarts residences shook their heads, coming back to reality.  One by one, they returned to the Great Hall.

 

“Well,” Hermione said, pleased.  “There’s another disaster averted.  And no one had a chance to do anything embarrassing.”  Then she noticed where her hand was.  “Ron why are we…” She threw down his hand.

 

“RONALD WEASLEY!  We were under the influence of Sugar Quill muses and you knew it, didn’t you?”

 

She turned and stalked away.

 

Ron’s face fell.  “Yeah…back to normal all right…but I almost got the girl!”

//
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