Merry Marchmas

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Fan Fiction  |  House: Booksie Classic
Who says caroling can only be done in the winter?

Submitted: December 08, 2009

A A A | A A A

Submitted: December 08, 2009

A A A

A A A


“I don’t believe you.”
“Its true! She really can’t say them.”
“That’s mean. I bet she can say them just fine.”
“Nope. Can’t.”
Vincent jabbed a finger in Morgan's chest. “Prove it. If se says everything wrong, I owe you a butter beer.”
“Deal!” Morgan pushed Vincent’s hand away and rubbed the sore spot on his chest. “Ouch.”
Riona had been watching this exchange between her boyfriend and his best friend with mild interest and slight aggravation. The three of them were sitting outside in a courtyard, Morgan and Vincent sitting on a low stone wall and Riona cross-legged on the grass. It was a normal afternoon in a typical day during a regular school term. As regular as possible, that is. Riona knew that each day used normalcy as a façade and hiding underneath was a conglomeration of exciting events. However, this was all beside the point. Her aggravation came from the two boys talking about her as if she wasn’t there. She didn’t like it and said so.
“Hey!” she grabbed their feet to draw attention to herself. “Stop talking about me like I’m not here.”
Morgan grinned down at her. “Sorry.” He wiggled his foot away and slid to the ground beside her. Even though they had been going out for a few weeks, Riona still felt one or two butterflies rocket around in her tummy when he was close. “Remember that list of words Laertes got from Muggle Studies? Remember that?”
“I’m not stupid. I remember that.” She felt her face flush with a half grin. As much as she loved Morgan, she didn’t like being reminded of downfalls. But at the same time, if the downfall as funny, she didn’t mind so much. “I just can’t say them is all.”
“You can say them. Everyone can say them.” Vincent scoffed from his perch on the stone wall.
“No, I really can’t.”
“Look, Birdy, you aren’t helping my bet!”
Riona sighed and looked up at Vincent with her large eyes and smiled. He automatically smiled back and his smile got bigger when she turned away and jabbed Morgan in the chest. “Fine. Let’s try this again.”
Morgan grinned roguishly. “Say: polynomial, Riona.”
“Plop a dop ical.”
“Polynomial.”
“Pom a nom in all.”
Vincent’s face grew incredulous. “Polynomial?”
“Papa nomma null!” Riona mumbled, ducking her head. She twisted the end of her braid between her fingers and grinned and Vincent. “Looks like you lose the bet. Sorry.”
“What other words can’t you say?”
Morgan was more than willing to provide Vincent with a list. “A type of chocolate bar called…?”
“Toe bob ler own.”
“Toblerone,” he corrected, smirking at Vincent. “Try saying it again.”
“Tube her clone?”
Vincent almost fell over with laughter. “That is the most amazing thing I’ve ever seen in my life!”
“Say ‘Marlborough,’” commanded Morgan.
“Marl awe bur rouge.”
“Nope.”
“Maul all below?”
“You have issues, don’t you?”
“I have issues?” squeaked Riona with a laugh. “You’re the one laughing at my disability!” She looked at Vincent who was shaking with laughter. “Don’t forget to breathe, broom head.”
Vincent sucked in a huge gasp of air, then went right back to laughing. Morgan wasn’t laughing, but looked very pleased with himself. He had heard Riona stumble over these words before, so they weren’t as funny to him, but he loved to make other people laugh. Riona was great for that.
“Of all the silly things…” Riona shook her head at the boys and pretended to be mad. “I don’t like you anymore.”
“Oh, but you do,” Morgan argued, linking his fingers with hers. “I know you do. You said so at breakfast. Remember?”
Riona’s face flushed again as she tried to pull her hand away from his. “Never said anything about that. Hush, you’ll embarrass Vincent.”
“Don’t mind me.” Vincent waved a hand in their direction from where he now lay on the ground. “Keep arguing or flirting or whatever you call it.” At the sound of Riona’s cry of pain he sat bolt upright. “What was that? What’s wrong? Morgan? What did you do?”
Morgan looked just as startled as he did. “Nothing! She just freaked out!”
“Girls don’t freak out on their own, dummy. Sweetheart, what happened?” Vincent watched as Riona stood and thrust her hand into Morgan’s face.
“You popped my finger!” she wailed comically. “Fix it!”
“I can’t fix it, its been popped.” Came Morgan’s helpless reply.
“No, I mean make it even!” She began flapping her hand. “When I tried to pull away and you held on tight, it popped just this one finger and none of the rest. My hand won’t be even and I cannot stand that!” she explained pitifully. “Please do the others too. Please?”
“Pop them yourself.” Morgan and Vincent said together.
“It hurts!”
“It hurts? You don’t want to do it yourself, so you want Morgan to do it for you?” Vincent raised an eyebrow at her. “Raving bonkers, this one. Completely bonkers.” He flopped back down and flung and arm over his eyes. “Take care of it, McFusty, so she’ll stop bouncing around like a rubber ball.”
“Please make it even,” Riona begged. “Please?” She looked as pitiful as one possibly could.
Morgan looked like he was debating his choices. “What will you do if I refuse?”
“Pester you till it’s fixed. Cry. Wail. Be a bothersome banshee. Cry more. Pout. Chase you until you do what I want and generally be a brat.”
“In that case…no.” Grinning wickedly, Morgan scooted away from Riona. “You can just suffer.”
“Argh!” Riona screamed and dove for Morgan, but he bolted away before she could catch him. He loped off across the courtyard with an awkward gait. Chasing after him, Riona wailed and kept flapping her hands at him. “You have to finish me!”
Vincent snorted. In the time that he had known Riona, his life had never been dull. Added that Morgan was his best friend and things got very interesting quickly. After their fist lap around the courtyard, he called out “Don’t kill him or anything. You’ll want him later.”
“What on earth are you allowing them to do?” An all too familiar voice demanded. Vincent peeked out from under his arm and took in the sight of Audrey Goodfellow in all her blonde glory. She had her hands on her hips and the usual expression of amused exasperation. He had seen her this way every time they talked.
Dark haired Mary popped out from behind Audrey and settled down on the grass next to Vincent. “Leave him alone. Besides, how else is Morgan going to get his exercise?” She poked his arm. “Do you have the History assignment? I forgot to write it down.”
Before he could reply, Audrey piped up “It’s the same assignment I have. I’ll give it to you.”
“Way to cut in and answer for me all at the same time, Blondie.”
She smirked at him and sat on the low stone wall, looking very prim and proper. “Well, excuse me for being prepared, Vincent Albright.” Audrey didn’t even blink as Morgan and Riona hurtled over the wall, panting and laughing.
“Finish me, you broom head! I hate you so darn much!”
“Riona look!” he gasped. “Something shiny!”
Her head swiveled toward the direction he pointed and her expression went blank. “Huh?” She stopped running and stood looking around bewildered. Her long hair stood out at odd angles and her face was rosy red. She looked like some insane statue attributing the joys of being scatterbrained.
“Great. You broke her, stupid.” Audrey pointed at Riona, stating the obvious. “Broken. You. Her. Stupid.”
Morgan collapsed in a panting heap next to Audrey and slumped over. “How else would you stop a charging girlfriend?”
“For that matter,” interjected Mary, “How do you stop a charging Riona?”
“My point exactly.” Morgan grinned stupidly at Vincent, then at Audrey. Audrey hated his stupid grin.
“You’re useless.” She shoved his shoulder, knocking him off balance completely. He tumbled off the wall with a thump and an expletive. “Stupid.” Audrey muttered more to herself than anyone else.
 
 
In the 27.5 seconds that Riona stood gazing into space, a teacher had failed five papers because they were late, the groundskeeper had dug another foot in the garden, two relationships began and one ended. The one that ended involved a broken nose, but that is beside the point. None of this was as interesting as what was going on in Riona’s mind. It went something like this:
“Shiny? Like aluminum or like a gemstone? Gemstones will shine with a brilliant cut. Can a stone other than emerald be emerald cut? Shiny could be a reflection off glass. Or satin. Sateen is something entirely different. It can look metallic, like aluminum. Where did that word come from? Muggle use it almost every day. Perhaps I hear it in Muggle Study class. I’m not in that class. Who is? Thalia was last I checked. Thalia is the muse of comedy and poetry, daughter of Zeus and counted as the sixth muse. A sixth sense for comedic timing might be a gift from her.
Gift equal Christmas. What am I getting everyone? Christmas already passed. I need to get them gifts for this year. Trees are a German tradition, so how was it carried over to England? We’re in Scotland. Ever seen a Scotsman angry? Did a Scotsman get displaced when the castle was build?
The walls of the castle are at least one foot thick at the mid-point, three at the base near the dungeons. Dungeons. Dragons. Dragonflies. Flying. Airborne. Fluttering. Wings. Wings and flying. When do I have flying class? Am I even in a Flying class? Maybe it’s on Wedne-“
“Riona? What on earth are you doing?”
Riona blinked rapidly as her mind snapped back to reality. Her eyes focused on the chocolate brown eyes directly level with hers. “Flying on Wednesday.”
Now it was Thalia’s turn to blink in confusion. “Flying?” She gently took Riona’s arm and pulled her back to where the others were sitting. There were all still laughing at Morgan and Audrey. “Did someone use a confusing charm on poor Riona?”
Vincent was brushing grass from his pants. “Blame Morgan, don’t look at us. Arret!” He glared at Mary, who ignored him and kept pulling up grass and tossing it at him.
“Morgan? What did you do?” Thalia leaned over the wall where he had fallen. “You mean thing!”
“All I said was something shiny!” he whined.
“Shiny?” Riona perked up again, no longer distracted by braiding her hair.
“No dear. Nothing is shiny. Sit down.” Audrey held out her hand expectantly. “Everyone stop being mean.”
“I’m not being mean, they are!” came their response in perfect unison, followed by peals of laughter. Other students in the courtyard turned and stared at the group, which only made them laugh harder.
It was when Professor Bai came gliding past did they quiet down. She looked at them with her intense gaze. Vincent always felt that when she looked at him like that, she suddenly knew everything he ever did wrong. It was scary to think that she probably knew you stole those cookies from the jar when Mum wasn’t looking.
Everyone watched as she passed, her silk robes swishing elegantly on the stone floor. She didn’t say a word and neither did anyone else. Thalia couldn’t help feeling convicted somehow, even though she hadn’t done anything wrong. She squirmed slightly where she stood. Gad, she walks slowly when staring.
“Christmas has German traditions, but we’re in Scotland. Most of us are from England. Anyone else think this is odd?”
Five pairs of eyes stared at Riona with a mixture of amusement, bewilderment and confusion. She looked right back at them. The statement made sense to her and she was sticking to it.
Mary responded first. “She’s right, you know. Christmas does have some strong German traditions. Even ‘Santa Klaus’ is Germanic.” The mood suddenly changed from confused to easy camaraderie. “Aren’t Christmas trees a German tradition, or did that come from somewhere else?”
Always willing to share her vast knowledge, Audrey quickly answered, “Yup. Someone wanted to duplicate the image of stars twinkling in the tree branches. Right, Riona?”
“I have no flippin’ idea.”
“You’re the one who brought it up, crazy!” Thalia said indignantly. “You should know!”
Riona defended herself. “Now hold on! Just because I’m talking doesn’t mean I’m saying anything.”
“That’s for darn sure.”
“Shut up, Morgan.” Riona said without looking at him.
“I mean, I love you?”
“Slightly better.”
Morgan slunk over to where Riona now sat on the grass not too far from Vincent and Mary. He put his arm around her waist and pulled her close. “More better?”
“More better.” She blushed and looked rather pleased with the whole arrangement.
“Get a room,” Mary scoffed, tossing at handful of grass at them. “Or not. That might be fun too.”
“Anyway.” Mary said loudly over Vincent’s laughter. “Back to the Christmas topic. Many traditions are Germanic, some are Roman, and some are Celtic.”
“I always partial to Christmas carols, myself.” Thalia added. “Didn’t get to go this year. Disappointing really.”
“Why not?”
“Never got the chance. Papa caught a gold and Mum was at a Quidditch match somewhere in Ireland for most of the holiday. Besides, I was still recovering from the Yule Ball. That was a blast, by the way.”
“I saw you and Ewan had a rather good time. I never pegged him for a dancer, but he held his own pretty well,” came a new voice from right behind Thalia. She was so surprised, she almost fell over.
“Gah!” She didn’t fall, but leapt to one side with a yelp. The boy behind her latched onto her waist as gracefully as a dancer himself.
“Don’t fall, crazy! Calm down, its only me!” He flashed a dazzling smile that made the girls swoon (either out loud or just in their heads) and made the boys roll their eyes.
“Put her down,” commanded Audrey imperiously, once she recovered from the swoon. “She’s all red in the face. Don’t forget to breathe, Thalia dear.”
Thalia wheezed an intake of air. Laertes, on the other hand, winked rogueishly at Audrey. “What? I think she likes to be man handled.” With that, he buried his face in Thalia’s neck till she screamed with delight at embarrassment.
“I’m telling Ewan,” quipped Morgan, who had made it back onto the wall and had pulled Riona close.
Laertes, Audrey and Thalia all rolled their eyes at him and said “Ewan won’t care,” at the same time. Everyone laughed again and conversation resumed.
This is one of those happy times you think must be a dream, because you’re so happy, thought Riona. Or that someone is writing a book and you are just one of the characters. I wonder if anyone would read a book with me in it? She leaned against Morgan, feeling his hand on the small of her back going up and down. Riona loved her friends. She loved it even more because they were all connected in so many different ways. Before her mind could wander too far away, she pulled it back to the present. This was a moment to enjoy, not to speculate about.
It was one of those quiet afternoons when the weather was just right at and the sunshine just warm enough. Vincent looked at his friends and grinned. “Weren’t we talking about Christmas a few minutes ago?”
“Christmas in March?” Laertes scoffed. “Why?”
Fingers from five hands pointed to Riona in explanation. “Well, that makes sense then.”
“Why does that count as explanation?” demanded Riona. “I protest!”
“Can’t protest if it’s true.” Mary stated. “Besides, it explained things. Don’t mess with something if it works. Never mess.” She shook her head in mock severity. “And I thought that you didn’t like long explanations. Makes your head hurt, doesn’t it?”
Riona just stuck her tongue out at Mary as a response and snuggled closer to Morgan with a slight pout.
“It is impossible to keep you people on topic!” Laertes grumbled. “I’m wondering what was said about Christmas and why Thalia didn’t get to go caroling this past Christmas.”
Thalia explained herself again and the conversation turned to traditions in their own families. Soon everyone was seated in a circle on the grass, all talking and laughing. Mary and finally stopped throwing grass at Vincent and Thalia found her head in Riona’s comfortable lap with her hair being stroked.
She had been explaining to Riona and Morgan how much her family loved to go caroling. Morgan knew this already and made it very clear how knowledgeable he was. The result, however, was Riona and Thalia exchanging looks of slight exasperation.
Mary and Audrey were discussing French traditions, but because the two liked to argue, it was quickly becoming a heated argument. Knowing it would be best to stay out of it, Vincent got up from the grass and worked with Laertes on dueling stances.
“What if we went caroling for you? Today? What are you doing right now?” Riona leaned over Thalia, pulling her own hair back and beginning to re-braid.
“Watch it, you’re braiding us together!”
“But what do you think? Want to go caroling?” Riona asked again, not bothering to take the braid out.
“Where would we go? Its March!” came Vincent’s incredulious cry. He stopped mid wand swish and smirked at Riona. “I know you forget things, Birdy, but even you should be able to tell what month it is.”
Riona gave Vincent that surprised him a little. “You think you’re so clever, don’t you? Thalia wants to carol and so do I. Therefore, we are going to.”
“We are?” Thalia sounded surprised and pleased.
“Yes, we are. Everyone should come with us. Except you,” she pointed at Vincent. “You’re mean.”
“Am not!” he whined.
Riona sniffed aristocratically. “Prove it. If I find a place to carol, will you go with us?”
“Deal.” Vincent smirked again. He was positive she would either forget or never have the courage to actually go up t a door and start singing. He was totally same from making a fool of himself.
 
 
Ten minutes later, all seven students found themselves huddled in a giggling group outside Professor Bai’s office door. Vincent was squished between Riona and Thalia. “How do I get talked into these things?” he mumbled. The girls gave no answer, but did give him a poke in the ribs.
“Wait, what are we singing?” someone hissed.
“ ‘We Wish You a Merry Christmas’,” came an equally hissed reply.
“But it’s March!”
“Shut up, Vincent!”
“You shut up.”
They had to pause for a moment to quiet their giggles. It was Laertes who came up with the bright idea to change the words to fit the month. The quiet excitement was totally thrilling and even Vincent had a stupid grin on his face.
“Ready?” squeaked Riona. All seven took a large inhale…then laughed at themselves. Audrey shushed them all and they tried again. This time it worked.
 
“We wish you a Merry Marchmas,
We wish you a Merry Marchmas!
We wish you a Merry Marchmas,
And a happy new…month!”
 
On the second line, the office door slowly opened to reveal a rather bemused Professor Bai. She looked very regal indeed, delicate tea cup in one hand, the soft glow of a lamp backlighting her elegant profile. It was the look on her face that was the funniest part.
When the song was finished, Professor Bai didn’t say a word, but just closed the door. After a few seconds of barely contained laughter, everyone fell on the floor in an absolute giggle fit. Then they all began laughing and talking at once.
“Did you see her face?”
“I was trying to harmonize. I think I did it.”
“Harmonize with what, a rhino?”
“That was amazing fun! Lets do it again!”
“Right. Go see if Bogolomov is in a cheery mood. I’ll watch.”
“Shut up.”
“No, you!”
“Best caroling ever.”
“Made up for missing at Christmas?”
“Bai will never let us live that down, you know.”
“You want to live that down?”
“We’ll do this again at actual Christmas, right?”
“Of course!”
“Will it be Decembermas, or are we going to use the real words?”
“Someone is touching my leg. Who is that?”
“Sorry.”
“Keep your hands to yourself, Morgan.”
“Shut up.”
“Make me.”
“I think we’ll go back to Christmas.”
“We just had Christmas! Oh- right. Nevermind.”
“You’re touching me again, Morgan! Stop it!”
“Ow! It wasn’t me!”
“Creep.”
“I think I lost a shoe.”
“That was so much fun!”
“Best caroling ever!”
“Already said that, broom head.”
“Shut up.”
“Make me!”
“Wonder if anyone else has done this?”
“As if. We’re unique.”
“If that’s what people are calling it these days, then yes we are.”
“Suppose they sang Marchmas?”
“Let’s do it again!”
“What, sing?”
“No, feel up Audrey.”
“Laertes!”
“What? It was fun.”
“And I got blamed for that? Not fair!”
“She’ll expect us and won’t open the door.”
“So? We’ll still have fun.”
“Let’s do it next month for Aprilmas.”
“Doesn’t roll off the tongue as well as Marchmas.”
“You roll off the tongue.”
“Fail, Morgan. Fail.”
“Vincent said it! Why am I getting blamed? Not fair again.”
“Where is my shoe?”
“I think this heap of people is a heap of fun.”
“No one else does this, I bet.”
“Its part of our uniqueness.”
“Didn’t we say all this already?”
“So?”
“Nothing. Just observing.”
“No, really…where is my shoe?”
“You were singing the bass line. Impressive.”
“Thanks. Been working on it all day.”
“Budge up, my arm’s fallen asleep.”
One by one they got up off the floor and dusted each other off. Morgan pulled a shoe out of his robes and winked at Riona, who smacked him on the arm and grabbed it back.
Thalia tossed her now messy hair off her shoulder and laughed. “See this?” She made a sweeping gesture that included her friends and most of the surrounding area. “This is why we’re friends.”
Riona bounced over to her and pulled Thalia into a warm hug. “Why, yes. Yes it is.” Within seconds, everyone had joined in the hug, making a clump of loving bodies. “Ain’t it great?”
Clearing her throat, Audrey declared it was time for dinner and they needed to break up the love circle. Most everyone protested loudly, but did as they were told. Soon their voices dimmed away and the hallway was peaceful again. From behind the closed office door, Professor Bai softly laughed to herself. She repeated with a smile, “This is why we’re friends. Merry Marchmas to all, and too all a good night.”


© Copyright 2020 ariella. All rights reserved.

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