Chapter 27

All Things Ordinary at Hogwarts

The lights in the Great Hall were dim as Lady de Rigeur stood, surveying the scene before her. She was the new Headmistress, so far an unknown entity to all of the students, but her scowl and the downward turn of her lips did not bode well for them. Still, surely nothing could be worse than the terms they endured under Headmistress Danuliete.

The older students all sat at their house tables, awaiting their new housemates; the new first years stood in a crowded group at the front of the Great Hall. Everyone watched as the Headmistress placed the battered old Sorting Hat onto a three-legged stool.

A rip near the seam of the Hat opened up, resembling a mouth. Then the Hat, to the new students’ surprise, began to sing:

I may be just a ragged hat
But I’ve more than meets the eye
For Hogwarts is full of magic
From post owls to an enchanted sky
The founders of this prestigious school
Gave me a very important duty
To Sort you into houses four
And tell you where you all should be
Into Gryffindor I shall place
Those of noble hearts
And bravery for Gryffindor
Is greater than the sum of its parts
Slytherin shall get those students
Who possess ambition aplenty
For cunning and pride are but a few
Of their traits as you shall come to see
The caring and the loyal shall go
To Hufflepuff, where its occupants are true
To themselves and their duties
To the end they see everything through
Ravenclaw, house number four
Is for those of wisdom and wit
Those who dwell within its walls
Are sure to find friends with whom they fit
So there we have it
Four houses true
So put me on and I shall find
The one that best suits you!

When the applause for the Hat’s yearly song died down, Lady Scarlett held up a scroll containing the names of all the new first years. “When I call your name,” she told the first years, “You shall sit on the stool and put the Hat on to be Sorted.” Nearly half an hour later, the new first years were Sorted. “As I am sure you all want to commence with the feast, I shall remind you that there is to be no magic in the corridors. We are also welcoming several new members of staff, who I am sure you will all become acquainted with in due time.” The Headmistress had resumed her seat at the faculty table now that the new students were all seated.

“This term we will also be reviving the Zacharias Mumps Trophy, which means that the traditional inter-house Quidditch cup will not be taking place. Further details of this event can be found in the Trophy Room. The two team captains are to be Vivienne Moor and Donal Talmorra.”

“One last thing before the food is sent up,” there was an audible groan at this, from professors and students both. “I suspect that we will be visited by several Ministry employees over the course of the year, so I expect your behavior to be impeccable. Thus, the Prefects have been given my express permission to remove up to ten house points for any one offence—the Head Boy and Head Girl will be able to remove up to twenty. They are my voice in the school.” A smile crossed her dark red lips. “Enjoy your meal.”

With this, food covered the four house tables and the feast began. An irritated Prefect!Avery tugged at his badge, wanting very badly to rip it off and hex the silver bugger into a comfortable oblivion.

That, of course, wouldn’t set a good example.

Screw examples.

There were lots of wonderful firsties to hex…err…rather mentor and instruct in the ways of kindness and decency.

Oh boy. That’s a joke.

Despite how odd it was that he was a Prefect, he figured he had better get used to it. Lys had, after all, and she was definitely no kind, loving, considerate, adult-like example-setter person.

Least there was comfort in that…

Some, at least…

Avery sighed, wrenched his hand away from his badge, and peered down at Vivi. “So,” he said to Vivs, staring at a Ravenclaw firstie who was punching the crap out of another firstie.

Yeah, okay, that’s great. He figured he should intervene, but, ya know, he was just so far away from them…can’t…walk…that…far.

Or he was just lazy. You pick.

“Back at school. Yay. More evil dark lords and more fun with Aggie. I could just scream. Really, I could.” He picked a roll off the tray in front of him and threw it at the back of a Slytherin’s head. So what if he was a Prefect. He was still Avery.

‘Nuff said.

Vivi grinned up at Avery, giving his shoulder a little nudge. “Aw, come on Avery, look on the bright side,” she encouraged. “You’re a Prefect. That’s ‘sposed to be a good thing.”

Vivi herself was not terribly excited to be back at school. She had spent the most absolutely perfect summer of her life at home in Mississippi, with Avery. There was no Agatha Swales to make their lives miserable and no creepy Hogwarts Professors breathing down their necks. Memories of Prince had been left behind. It had been bliss. Vivi had even hit a wild growth spurt. Amazing.

Now, though, they were back. She was happy enough, due to the Quidditch announcement, but Avery seemed less so. Standing up a little, Vivi gave him a kiss of the cheek. “Cheer up, honn. Classes don’t start for another week.”

True, Avery thought. Classes didn’t start for a bit, but a few things were still annoying him.

1) The impending doom that was Agatha Swales.

2) It was school. That’s just always depressing.

3) His rather odd summer with Vivi’s family.

It had been better than going home, he admitted to himself. Despite the quirks, he was away from home and with Vivs. Only all of the cobbler (to which he was most likely now allergic) and thoughts of Aggie had ruined the summer.

That ain’t bad, considering how last year went.

“That’s always good,” he said, smiling at the little Huth who had actually grown a bit over the summer. So he would not end up with back problems after all. He shook his head as if to clear his mind, and then turned to face Vivs. “Sorry. I’m just…thinking…too much, not healthy, ya know?”

“No problem, Avey.” Vivi said lightly, pouring herself a goblet of pumpkin juice. “Tell me if ya wanna talk about it.”

Avery just shrugged, his eyes drifting towards Donal, a sure sign that something was up. Donal sat in his place at the Gryffindor table, a small smile on his face as the feast began. It was more of a smirk really. Casually looking around to make sure no one was paying him particular attention, he caught Avery’s eye and gave a very small nod. Ducking down towards his shoes he carefully slid something from beneath his robes and onto the floor between his feet, and pretended to be tying his shoe laces. Straightening up, he helped himself to some more food, and slipped his wand into his hand, but keeping all the tip hidden in his sleeve.

The object on the floor was a bludger, but no one could tell because it had an invisibility charm cast upon it. Donal had also added an Anti-Sticking charm so that things would not stick to its surface, and used the Imobillus charm to ensure that it didn’t move on its own until he wanted it too.

He lowered his arm so his wand was pointing between his feet, and whispered “Finite Imobillus!”

WHAM! A hole about twelve inches across appeared in the middle of the table. SMASH! A candelabra suspended from the ceiling was sent wildly spinning and swinging back and forth. Food, plates, seats, even the occasional person, were sent flying as the high speed, invisible object went careening around the Great Hall.

Finite,” Avery muttered, a sadistic grin gracing his face. So what if he was a Prefect? He could always give himself the points back. And surely Lys would help too. She, after all, was not the model student.

A hole appeared in front of Avery as the second invisible bludger flew upward, taking out a few floating candles in its wake.

Oh how fun destruction can be.

Avery grinned at Donal, and then joined the others in a panicked frenzy.

Not the most responsible thing I could do, but whatever. I’m Avery, after all.

Vivi just rolled her eyes. Chaos: that was one thing she was guaranteed to have plenty of while dating Avery Berke. Pulling back her goblet in an effort to avoid spilling any more pumpkin juice while the bludgers destroyed the table, she smiled.

He is Avery, after all.

As the bludger destruction continued and Avery became wrapped up in a conversation with Donal, Vivi realized that someone had just sat down beside her. She turned to view this new person. The announcement had been made about the new teams of Quidditch, and the first thing Cisco had to do was find one of the captains and get put on their team. Getting up and heading to the Hufflepuff table, he spotted Vivs and took a seat next to her, only after pushing a slightly smaller child aside. (After all, why not use his powers as Head boy, right?)

“So Vivs, you’re the new Quidditch Captain, congrats.” he gave her a little nudge on the shoulder, “so I am getting a spot on the team, right?” Francisco had been on the Ravenclaw Quidditch team since his first year at Hogwarts, and there was no way he was planning on not being on a team.

“I dunno, some of the first years look pretty promising,” Vivi quipped, pondering for a moment before dropping the pretense. “Course ya are Cisco, I would’ve asked you,” she said, very enthusiastic over the entire thing. The only down side was that her opponent was also a friend, Donal Talmorra, but she was determined to keep the competition friendly and fair.

“I’m excited. Be good to have a full team for a change,” she admitted. After the Prince events, with the attendance rate dropping rapidly, furnishing a full team had become nigh on impossible. The trophy gave Hogwarts a chance to actually have a real Quidditch tournament for a change…

“Great.” Cisco said, and they began talking Quidditch, a subject that would last well into the feast.

It was the first day of classes, and the new Transfiguration professor was already waiting at the front of the classroom for her older students, in all of her flamboyant pink glory. Her hair had grown gradually more flyaway during the course of the day, although the majority of it still hung like a rope down her back. Her hat had either been lost or discarded somewhere between lunch and the lesson.

She beamed at the class. “Welcome to Transfiguration. My name is, um, well, I’m Elizabeth Hopkins. Seeing as you are older than my other classes, I shall allow you to address me by my first name. Although,” she added a second later, “it’s, um, well, it’s probably best to call me ‘Professor Hopkins’ if the Headmistress is around.”

“We’re gonna launch straight into a lesson. An oldie but a goodie, even if I do say so myself. It’s, um, commonly called the ‘Gender Bender’ spell, so no prizes for guessing what it does. You will, erm, you will be turning your partner into their male or female equivalent. So pair up and we can get started.”

She conjured the incantation with a flick of her wand, and the words of the incantation, pink and sparkly, hung in the air: Mutare Sesso. “Remember to swish and flick,” she warned. “I once heard of a wizard who flicked and swished instead of swishing and flicking. The consequences, while amusing, were painful, or so I’m told.”

Avery had thought that all of the stupid assignments were done for the day. He felt that maybe, just maybe, he would get a normal teacher with a normal lesson.

He was dead wrong.

So, aside from the unnerving thought of getting his yahas transfigured, there was the small problem of needing to find someone good at transfiguration. He wasn’t very keen on the idea of his yahas getting cosmically splinched between two planes.

He winced at the thought.

Okay. Who to work with. Donal would do something odd, Aiko would castrate me for kicks, as would Aggie. Vivs may just accidentally castrate me ’cause she’s just that bad. Mori? Avery looked at the odd Slytherin fourth year. They had never really spoken, and sure, he was a bit, different, but he seemed to be okay at transfiguration.

“Mori,” Avery called, walking over to the forth year. “Wanna work with me?” Sure, Avery was slightly dangerous, but a sixth year was better than someone younger and less experienced, right?

Mori was not expecting someone to ask him to be partners. In fact he had imagined that he would end up being stuck with whoever was left. Mori was pretty good at transfiguration, and the only times he had really messed up were when he was doing something not natural to his own magic. For example, dealing with fire last year. He had never been liked by fire so it did not work out right. But he suspected that he could do this spell with something of ease.

He was already fairly feminine, with his heart-shaped face, smooth, unblemished, alabaster skin, flawless and perfect, soft, full, blood-red lips, a little nose, soft definition of cheekbones, and eyes that looked mysterious. His long black eyelashes cast shadows against his cheeks and looked more like butterfly wings than anything as he blinked slowly. His hair was another thing that contributed to his feminine appearance. It was long, to his ankles, but usually in a braid, and colored bright, vibrant purple. It matched nicely with his silver eyes, and added deep contrast to the color of his skin.

Hearing his name called, his silver eyes widened slightly, blinking, thinking it may have been the teacher doing something like roll call, but it wasn’t.

Instead it was…Avery Berke?

Glancing around the classroom quickly, Mori saw that many people had yet to be paired up, so why was Avery asking to work with him? Looking extremely disoriented and confused for a moment, Mori didn’t respond, purple bangs falling into his eyes as he looked at the sixth year.

“I…” Well he was not going to say no, he just had to get over his initial shock of being asked relatively early in class. “I…I would be elated working with you.” This was still odd, not understanding why Avery, who had a dozen other friends and people to choose from in this classroom, would pick a boy who seemed to slowly be becoming the Slytherin outcast.

Picking up his wand, Mori twirled it through his fingers, making a clicking noise of nails against wood. “Since we have to do this spell eventually, who should be the caster first?” Wait, did the professor tell them the reversal spell? Well, hopefully she would come around and perform the reversal spell on people.

Nervousness showed, well, almost radiated, from Mori’s eyes. He kept the rest of his expression very neutral and kept looking straight at Avery. “It is up to you,” he said in the same whisper, as he quickly looked at the Professor again.

Mori had expected something enhanced, but for all the life of him he could have sworn that gender spells were illegal, or on their way to becoming so. It was because of parents who decided they would rather have a girl, or rather have a boy. A million things could go wrong. He managed a weak, slightly nervous half smile at Avery.

Avery, it seemed, was a touch more intimidating than he had anticipated. Either that, or Mori was just afraid of any human contact. “Okay… I’ll go first, I guess.” Avery said.

Despite the overwhelming qualms he was having, Avery extended his wand and, after doing the proper wand movements, commanded, “Mutare Sesso!” A swirl of blue, black, and green lights shot from his wand and hit Mori in the chest. Which was growing, it seemed, progressively larger.

Avery just stared, panicking even more because he knew he was next.

Mori looked up to say, “Just give me a moment to get ready.” He was not allowed that liberty as his partner said the words and the spell flew from the tip of his wand, barreling towards Mori and knocking him straight in his chest, actually taking him completely off guard he fell backwards, landing on his butt. Wincing from that, he registered the pain going through his own body. It was not just from landing on the floor a little to hard. It was the spell taking effect, and it did not feel like roses and sunshine…not at all.

It felt like the muscles in his body were being twisted the wrong way, and left him gasping. His skin was falling off, it had to be, no one could withstand heat burning under their skin. Coughing violently, trying to get air back into his lungs, Mori felt as if everything was contracting terribly, especially his lungs.

A spell that changed one thing into another did not feel pleasant. No wonder the little animals made such a squeak when they were being changed into something like clear glass goblets; it was not a welcomed feeling.

It was an awful experience, and as Mori moved to his hands and knees, he finished his coughing. It seemed everything expanded and went back to normal; his lungs were clear and working, his heart was beating and pumping blood, not smoke, through his veins. Catching his breath he finally managed to clear the increasing fog that was surrounding his mind away.

Oy va. He spoke to himself in his own mind and used the desk as support, stood up. That in itself was a procedure that took more effort then it should have.

He didn’t even have to ask if the spell worked.

The first thing Mori noticed was that everything seemed a little taller; everything was a tad more menacing then before. He had shrunk; well basically he was just around three or so inches shorter from his natural 5’6″. The sleeves to his robe and shirts fell over his hands, and the cuffs to his pants were something he was going to trip on. But that was not the only surprise that came with him standing up. He shifted from foot to foot, feeling as if the clothes tailored to his male form did not fit right, and with a little glance down he found out why.

Cloth covered hands reached up and cupped what was on his chest. He had breasts and they were huge. Quickly reaching for the clasps he pulled off his robe to see that the material of his sweater was stretched, and probably ruined. But that was not all. Finally letting go of his newly formed chest, he went down to his stomach, still as skinny, but with the exception that he had hips, not that much, but they were defiantly more defined. Gulping, just by shifting from one foot to the other, he already knew that the important part of his male anatomy was gone.

The spell had worked; he was a girl.

Before aiming his wand and firing the spell at Avery, Mori picked up his wand from the desk, took a pencil from behind his ear, and with a whisper, transfigured the pencil into a mirror to see what changes had occurred to his face. His eyes, though always bedroomy with long eyelashes, now appeared seductive. They were slightly larger and looked more innocent. His nose had not changed much; it was still little and could now be described as cute as a button.

Avery would have found it funny, Mori being a girl, provided he did not have to undergo the same change. If he knew in five minutes his junk (as it is so called by random locker-room perverts) would remain where it should, he might have been on the floor, laughing his male butt off.

He, however, would soon be a girl. That could suck the fun out of anyone’s day.

“It worked,” Mori said finally. Even his voice had changed, though still whispered it was octaves higher and sweeter, like alluring honey. Confusion, shock and almost fear still coursed through Mori. He took out his wand and pointed it at Avery.

“It only hurts for a second. I won’t mess up.” He would not either. Besides History of Magic, Transfiguration was Mori’s best subject.

Speaking slowly, and with the right wand movements, Mori said, “Mutare Sesso.” It was still whispered, but spoken with firm belief and pride in the spell. The spell floated out in the colors of purple, silver, and red, swirling around each other, and then wrapping around Avery like a cloth, instead of the blast that Mori had received.

Time seemed to slow down as Avery saw the colorful energy flying toward him. His breathing quickened and he closed his eyes as the spell enveloped him in a cool, cosmic blanket.

Mori said there would be pain. Short-lived pain, but pain nonetheless. Avery, however, felt no pain. The blanket of energy that had surrounded him seeped into his pores and flowed through each inch of his body. It was a bit cold, but there was no real discomfort. If anything, it was a pleasurable experience.

There seemed to be a sort of cleansing calm that washed over him as the chill washed through him. He could feel his expanding chest press hard against his button-down shirt, pulling the fabric tightly across his newly added body parts. He could feel his hair growing and he could definitely feel himself shrinking.

Well, two things shrinking, one a touch more unnerving than the other.

He felt his shoulders shrink a bit and his legs and arms become thinner, making his male clothes fit oddly. His shirt was tight around his chest and loose in the arms, and his pants were ready to fall off of him, as he had nothing there to hold them up. His boxers were already around his now-thin thighs, and his sagging pants were threatening to expose his non-existent junk.

Well, that’s just uncomfortable, he thought.

The chilling sensation subsided and Avery opened his eyes. He feared people would look; upon scanning the room, he realized people were too occupied with their own foreign changes to notice his. That was good. He was not exactly ready for the world to see him as a girl.

Having pulled his dangerously low pants up, he grabbed down there, as if the familiar part might still be there. Though he had felt it shrink (as odd as that sounds), he was hoping it was just some sort of mind game the spell had played. It was not. There was nothing there.

“Lemme see that.” Avery said, grabbing the mirror off the desk next to Mori. He was a she? Avery the girl raised it slowly to her face and gasped when she saw her reflection.

Long, black, curly hair framed her now-thin, heart-shaped face and full red lips sat thereon. She realized she was paler than before. Clearly Female!Avery did not like the sun as much as Male!Avery. And she also did not like any sort of manual labor. Her hands were perfectly soft (and manicured to boot) and she had no muscle definition at all. He would have wagered that Female!Avery had not lifted anything heavier than ten pounds in her life.

“Okay. This is different. Odd. Uncomfortable.” Avery paused, playing with her hair for a moment. “So,” she said, setting down the mirror, “When do we get changed back?” Suddenly, Avery noticed, she was feeling more emotional, nearly on the verge of a sort of indignant fit. Tears, even.

On the other side of the classroom, Vivi sat with her nose in her Transfiguration book, trying desperately to understand the spell better before she tried it on anyone. This spell was whacked up, it really was, it made people into virtual hermaphrodites. Eep!

When the Professor had mentioned partners, Vivi’s frenzied brain had yelled one thing: Not Avery!

As much as Vivi liked Avery Berke, she was highly uncomfortable with the thought of robbing her boyfriend of his, um, equipment, and also with him messing with her body that way.

True, her cloths would stay safely in place, but there was just something very, very wrong with that picture. So, naturally, as soon as Vivi finished reading about the spell, she turned to her other favorite person in the world. Aiko Watanabe. The girls had been friends since first year, and fast friends at that, despite the fact that Aiko hated Berke with a vengeance.

“Partner, Aiko?” Vivi asked, glancing at the dark-headed Prefect next to her. “Please?”

Aiko knew there was a reason she had not gone to class the year before. It was because the teachers were bloody insane (and who knew what gender, apparently). She only hoped that no one had used this spell on a more permanent level.

Although that would explain Berke…

…who was dating Vivi.

Aiko paled and shook the unpleasant thoughts (both of them) from her mind. After all, Avery’s first reaction was to grab himself after transforming (a sight she hoped never to see again, ever). But why on earth did Vivi look so calm about the whole thing?

There was no way in Hades that Aiko was going to give up her…boulders…not after she had spent all summer maturing them. Or rather, watching them mature with feelings of great excitement. It was reassuring to know her petite nature did not apply to all parts of her anatomy.

“I suppose it’s better that we’re doing this in transfiguration, rather than Muggle Studies,” Aiko admitted, turning to face her best friend. “You’re first, Jerk-Kisser. Mutare Sesso!”

“Wait—I,” was all Vivi had time to say before the spell hit her, and hit her hard. She thudded into the back of her chair, nearly knocking it over, and gasped as a heat wave poured over her body.

It was like jumping into the shower when the water is just a little too hot. Heat trickled down her arms, across her back, and into her joints. She throbbed, all over, like the blood had suddenly sped up and become too big for her veins. It hurt, but it was a good pain, sort of like cracking your knuckles. Everywhere it seemed that things popped, even down…

EEEEEEEEPPPPPPPPP!

“Oh my gosh!” Vivi yelled, jumping up as the spell ended, allowing her to speak. Her eyes went wide and her hands flew to her throat. That was not her voice!

This was not her body!

Normally, Vivi had long, wavy black hair that hung below her shoulder. She was short but no longer tiny, at 5’5, having experienced a growth spurt over the summer. She had grey eyes and a fair complexion, with a few freckles sprinkled across her small nose. She was muscled from working out and Quidditch, yes, but as she was thin in the first place it merely gave her stick figure definition. As for her girly parts, well, they were nothing to brag on, but formerly her shirt had puckered out a heck of a lot more than it did now.

Vivi, bringing her hands down from her throat, bit her lip, and chanced looking down. The ground was a lot further away than it had been. She was no Avery, but Vivi the Boy was about six feet tall.

Nice.

Continuing her, no, his inspection, Vivi, noticed that his legs were more muscled. His feet were bigger. And his hands…bigger too, with more hair. Feeling upward with a rough palm, he realized that his hair was short, although still long enough to fall into his eyes. His chin seemed more defined, and his shoulders broader.

Worse, Vivi no longer fit into his cloths. In growing, he had practically split the pants, and was feeling very, very pinched. The t-shirt stretched across his chest, tight but still in one piece. The only lucky thing for Vivi was the fact that he had worn robes to class. So, while they were too short and ripping at the shoulders, no one could see his unfortunate pants situation. This is incredibly…tight. Ouch!

The clothing would be dealt with in a moment. There were other things to attend to, other curiosities to satisfy. He was beginning to feel overwhelmed, or then again, maybe that was just the guy emotions kicking in. Did guys always feel so bewildered? Vivi didn’t know. “Mirror,” Vivi pleaded, then, spotting one, grabbed it up. “Oh my gosh.” Vivi sat down hard. “I look like my Dad.”

Creepy. But not as creepy as having a what-sit.

Glancing across the room, Vivi noticed a very pretty female staring at herself in the mirror.

She’s hott.

Did I just think that?

Someone kill me. That girl is Avery.

“See anything you like?” Aiko teased, watching Vivi admire her significant (ly moronic) other from across the room. The spell had done little for the other Hufflepuff’s taste; Vivi seemed to still be attracted to the amazing bird-brain. Hopefully Alex would show up soon; seeing him as a girl was sounding more and more appealing.

“Your turn.” Vivi said, eyes lighting up as she turned her wand on Aiko. Jerk-Kisser indeed, she thought before she yelled, “Mutare Sesso!”

Aiko gasped, perhaps out of surprise, but more likely it had something to do with the large bulge that had dropped quite suddenly in a place nothing should ever be. Ever.

“Oww! Ow! Owowowowow!” Aiko squealed in discomfort as her yellow sundress suddenly became a lot more revealing than it was designed to be. The straps broke off with a twang and snapped against her darkening skin. A metallic snap told her that her strapless bra had been rendered useless as well as her back expanded and her chest—”No! Come back!”—disappeared.

“These were expensive!” she burst out, her voice abnormally low. She held up the broken sandals that her large, unpolished feet had destroyed, and threw them across the room (unfortunately, missing the Jerks head). “Bloody heck!”

Thin dark hairs grew from previously smooth legs, and she was disgusted to find that she had hair under her armpits as well. Her long, dark curls redrew themselves into her scalp with a burning sensation until they reached the base of her neck. As Vivi grew upwards, Aiko was very disappointed to see that she remained a near-midget. The two or so inches she gained barely made a difference. Width wise, however, there were more prominent issues.

Like the fact that she was now a muscular boy wearing a very small—and getting smaller—sundress. “Fix it!” she yelled, targeting Vivs.

“If I have ta.” Vivi said, grinning down at the stocky boy standing next to him. He was feeling very pleased with himself, as he had not turned done anything to Aiko that the spell was not intended to do.

Rather than try to transfigure the sundress while Aiko the Boy was still wearing it, Vivi turned to the shoes that had been tossed across the room, and summoned them back. Performing a basic transfiguration spell, he produced larger cotton robes, although they were the color of the sandals. “Here,” Vivi said, handing the robes to Aiko. Then he bent to tug at the hems of his own pants.

Waving his wand again, Vivi transfigured the pants enough to wear he could move again, without fear of severely chafing, ah, er, something.

If transfiguration had not been such a challenge, Vivi would have been a lot more inventive. As it was, he felt safer staying with simple spells, ones he had practiced before. Doing the Gender-Bender right had been a bit of luck, but he did not want to try his chances again. Still, the shirt was too tight. Maybe if he pulled it off. Guys could do that, right?

It took minutes of struggling with the stubbornly tight shirt, but Vivi got an arm out soon enough. He wrestled with the other arm, and finally slipped out of it. He pulled it over his head, and then glared at it. Maybe one more little spell would not hurt…

Swish, flick, spell.

The shirt withered up, until it was even smaller.

Dang it! Vivi thought, raising his wand again.

Swish, flick, spell.

Now it was huge. He had over-shot. Shrugging, Vivi kicked the robes away and pulled it over his head, feeling very piece-meal in his large shirt and makeshift jeans. At least now he looked presentable though, and he felt, well he felt strong. And sturdy.

And like he wanted to snog something.

Do guys always think like this?

Grinning at the short and stocky Aiko, he resisted the urge to laugh, and said instead, “This is weird.”

Aiko deigned not to respond as the bell rang, and the motley class scurried into the hallway. Vivi decided that chatting with Aiko could wait until they were both female again, so she sought out Avery.

Avery the girl smiled, and without a word, took Vivi the boy by the hand.

Weird, Vivi the Boy thought, and getting weirder. But she did not protest. Maybe it was the testosterone, but being led away somewhere by his girl-friend…boy-friend…European lover…did not necessarily seem like a bad thing. Not at all.

Avery led Vivi by the hand to the Gryffindor Common Room. For some reason unknown, most likely the girly hormones, Avery had to talk to her—him.

“Snorklump,” Avery said to the Fat Lady. The portrait swung open and Avery, still clutching Vivi’s hand, led him inside. People were staring. Obviously, no one recognized Avery as a girl, nor did they recognize the Hufflepuff disguised as a boy. Had he been a guy, Avery would have glared at all who were staring. However, he left that up to Vivi. He was too busy being embarrassed and scanning the common room for a few hott guys.

Though, obviously, none were hotter than Vivi.

Despite being a girl, it was odd to be attracted to guys. He felt a bit gay. He would quite enjoy having his junk back when the spell wore off. Eyeing the few who dared stare at his woman, Vivi stood up a little taller, displaying his full height of six feet tall. Man, he felt strong. So what if he had formerly been a girl known as Vivi? They better not mess with him now. Yeah that’s right people. Back off.

Avery and Vivi continued across the common room and climbed the stairs leading up to the sixth year boys’ dorms. Once there, Avery opened the door and gasped. Surely this was not her room. Clothes were everywhere and there was a foul odor wafting out through the open door.

Oh, that’s right. She had once been a guy. That would explain the gross-ness.

Maybe she should become a lesbian. Then she would not have to deal with disgusting men.

Avery crossed the room, trying to avoid stepping on the unwashed clothes that littered the floor, and sat down on her unmade bed. She tucked a loose strand of hair behind her, apparently, pierced ear, eyes glued to Vivi. As a girl, Avery was more needy. It was as if she could not let go of her man.

That would explain why she had yet to release his hand.

Within moments the two were in the dorm room, which was messy. Oddly enough Vivi did not care. He was a lot more interested in the only female in the room: Avery.

He looked cheekily down at her. Gosh she was fine, and needy. There was no one around; maybe they could hit a home run. The dorm was as good a place as any. What am I thinking?

Whether it was the boy hormones or her own, evidently repressed feelings, Vivi had no way of knowing. A whole new range of thoughts was now flowing through her head, and she was not entirely in control of it. Maybe this is the wrong thing to do, she thought. Avery did look awfully inviting though, sitting there.

Vivi held Avery’s hand in his larger one, and leaned down onto the bed, supporting her back with the other arm while pressing her gently down with their hands. He kissed her fully, male confidence raging, and then backed off a little. He slipped onto the bed beside her, still holding onto her hand.

“Ya know? I still like it.” Vivi said, before the female side chimed in, “Even if I am a guy.”

Avery beamed. Vivi loved her. He really did. He was not just some horny guy who was trying to take advantage of her—he might have been, but he was not acting on any of those raging guy hormones Avery remembered so well. Vivi genuinely cared for her. Avery was grinning from ear to ear, her now perfectly straight teeth glistening.

Apparently the longer one was under the influence of the spell, the more they thought like the opposite sex. Or maybe it only worked when a guy was changed into a girl. Vivi did not seem to be as affected as Avery was. Maybe, though, it was just feelings that he had suppressed but that he could now, as a girl, express. He was not exactly sure, but he knew he was feeling them, and they had to have come from somewhere inside him. Whether the spell had magnified them to exaggerated proportions was another thing…

“That’s good. ‘Cause you know, having been a guy and all, that’s kinda a necessary part of any relationship…” Avery trailed off and kissed him softly, slowly easing her way on top of him. She ran her fingers though his curly hair as she deepened the kiss, and she shivered as his hand crept onto her back, tracing small circles on her pale skin.

She broke the kiss for a second and peered down into his gray eyes, shivering again as his warm breath brushed across her face. Mouth inches from his, she whispered, “I love you,” then resumed kissing.

Okay. Girls can be horny too, Avery realized. Being horny is not something reserved solely for guys. He now knew that first hand.

Vivi wrapped strong arms around Avery, stroking her back and hair, as he was pushed firmly into the duvet by her weight. Her lips were softer than he remembered, and fuller. It was a thrilling sensation, being on the other side, and his thoughts were zooming around in a circle revolving on one thing: Avery was lying on top of him.

That little detail led his mind into a whole new range of possibilities. He was nearly sixteen, a guy, and seriously considering trying to do something with Avery’s clothing—like toss it across the room.

Perv, whispered a little voice in the back of his head. You’re not even a guy.

He brought his hands up to gently cup Avery’s face, opening his eyes so he could stare into hers, before kissing her cheek, and then lower, on her neck. She was on top of him, after all.

So, he thought, trying to brush that little voice of reason out of his mind. High strung emotions and lust felt so good.

I know having a what-sit is exciting, the little voice persisted. In further attempts to ignore it, Vivi went back to kissing Avery. But this really is too much, The voice finished. There was a snap, like a tree being hit by lightning, and Vivi stopped mid-kiss. He pulled back, carefully, and touched Avery’s face.

“I love ya too.” He said, still feeling hot, but he, no, Vivi, was in control now.

It seemed that the internal affects of the spell wore off quicker than the physical ones. It was clear that Vivi was no longer thinking with his junk, but rather with his heart. The “I love you” was a big clue, as was the fact that he moved his hands away from very suggestive places.

Vivi still felt a need pulling at him, trying to toy with him like a puppet on a string, but he would not yield. She forced herself—himself—to roll over, slowly moving Avery to her, no, his, side. Vivi kissed Avery, a sweet kiss, lingering and playful, before going back for more, a little deeper but less intense than earlier.

Vivi was a girl, and girls knew how to play too, but she had a better handle on her emotions. That, right now, would be wrong. Even for Avery the Girl and Vivi the Boy. And they both knew it. Or so Vivi hoped.

It had been hot and passionate, something Avery had never before felt. Anything this steamy experienced as a boy would have been driven by pure lust. Being a girl, all the heat between them was fueled by nothing but pure, honest love.

Well, maybe a little lust. Vivi, after all, was really frickin’ hot.

But he’s a guy, ya twit… ‘Course he’s a guy,. Avery was a girl, he was a guy. Need it be spelled out? Little bits of sanity flashed through her head, but she brushed them off, trying hard to forget that they were under a spell.

She was nearly about to rip her shirt off herself when something in her head kinda clicked. That physical jarring had snapped her back to reality—

–Avery was a guy. He was supposed to be the one with the insatiable horniness. Yet he was the one who wanted the soft, tender love.

Something was a touch off.

The spell must be wearing off, Avery thought, suddenly not feeling so hot for a guy. A guy? Yeah. That’s just wrong.

And it’s wearing off on Vivs too, Avery realized. Vivi, a few moments earlier the insatiable sex bunny, was now reverting to the logical Huth she (or was it still he?) had always been. She had just said “I love you” for goodness sakes. Any guy, when presented with either love or sex, takes the latter hands down. Yet Vivi had decided against it and had reverted back to her old “love”-loving self.

Still, Vivi had a bit of male left in her, as Avery still had a bit of the emotional, needy, girl-Avery in him. So why not go with it?

Vivi kissed him with a more tender, caring touch, slowly deepening it to nothing more than what one would allow their children to see.

Avery had a sudden though; he was kissing a guy, willingly. And liking it.

Yet he was still in a girl’s body and was partially still a girl, so he didn’t care. It may have been a bit odd on some weird level, but it was Vivi. Even if Vivi had been forever been stuck in a male body, Avery wouldn’t have cared. It would still be Vivi inside.

Thus he continued making out with the boy-girl hybrid thing, trying to toss all reason out the window.

It was magic for goodness sakes. Can’t do much about that.

Brian walked into the Great Hall, a bit ashamed and embarrassed. He swished his long bangs out of his eyes and sulked at a Ravenclaw Table. He had been gone for a long time, how long Brian didn’t know. All he wanted to see was Avery, his best friend. He wondered if the weirdo was still around. He searched the Great Hall for his face and tall figure.

Avery entered the Great Hall for a break in between his classes.

They had been odd, as usual, but at least this time none required messing with their anatomy in an awkward magical-surgery sort of way.

Avery was about to shove a firstie aside and sit down at the Gryffindor table when he spotted someone unbelievably short. He squinted, trying to decide if it was a firstie or…

…naw…it couldn’t be…

Avery continued walking, hooking around a corner and striding up the isle between his table and the Ravenclaw one. As he got closer to the midget in question, he realized that it, in fact, was quite possible.

Brian was back.

Avery opened his mouth to talk, but no sound came out. It was going to be awkward, he was sure. Brian had not shown his face in the school for a long while.

Then again, neither had Avery.

Finding a small part of his voice, Avery walked closer to the shrimp and said, “Welcome back, Limes.”

Nearby Kameko, a Ravenclaw fourth year, was playing a game of solitaire, which perfectly suited her lonely state. Hearing nearby voices, she looked up, curious.

Limes? Who the— Kameko cut her thoughts off as she turned to look at the sound. Avery Berke was standing in front of a familiar face…Brian Limey. She recognized him as a Ravenclaw, but she had not seen him since last year.

Kameko raised her eyebrows but said nothing. She watched them talk for a moment. Then, blushing, she turned back to the cards and placed the ace of hearts.

Brian turned around quickly, his mouth agape. His face met with a stomach. Slightly shocked, Brian looked upwards and recognized Avery’s familiar face. Brian’s mouth formed a toothy grin, as he laughed at Avery’s last remark.

“Hey! I’ve grown a bit!” Brian laughed, standing up and twirling like a model. “I can’t help it, it’s my dads fault for being a damn elf!”

Brian observed Avery. Is it possible he got…taller? he wondered.

“How have you been, mate?” Brian said after grabbing a biscuit from the Ravenclaw table, “not to sound corny or anything, but life has been hell without you or Donal. Let me tell you, I’ve wanted to pull some huge prank for the longest time. But my mother threatened to send me away if I caused ‘One bit of trouble!’.” Brian squeaked, imitating his annoying mother’s voice.

“My grandparents got murdered back home,” Brian announced, though he didn’t seem at all heartbroken. “Never saw them before. On me mum’s side. But my mom really took it hard, quit everything. Made sure everyone in the family was having a hard time. I’m lucky I got the hell outta there. I don’t think I really want to go back…” Brian trailed off.

“So what’s been going on with you? Love life? Classes? I gotta know…if Donal’s around we need to start plannin’ a end of Hogwarts prank, for seventh year.” Brian quit talking and looked out of the corner of his eye to see Kameko quickly look, and look away. Brian cleared his throat, a bit annoyed, and moved his eyes back to the Giant.

Avery sat down and was now at eye-level with Brian. He was about to offer condolences (he wasn’t completely heartless after all), but Brian made a point to mention that he had not ever met them. Least that made the situation less awkward.

Trying to avoid the topic of death (as he had had enough of it his previous year), he returned to the whole can’t-do-anymore-pranks topic. “Ya know, I’m a prefect now, so I could vouch for you. Either way, don’t think we’d get caught doing anything. Donal’s become, if possible, even more…shifty.” He shivered slightly. Though Donal was one of his two best friends (not including Vivs, o’course), he had the sickening feeling that Donal would backstab him (quite literally) if need be.

Therefore the aforementioned shiftiness was not all that comforting.

Brushing aside yet another awkward conversation topic, Avery moved on to Brian’s other questions: the one pertaining to pranks, classes, and his love life.

He had forgotten how nosy Brian could be.

“Classes…well, all our professors have escaped from St. Mungo’s, I think. One made us magically switch genders….” He stopped for a moment to remember that horrible experience. He was really self-conscious, being a girl, and very emotional. Then again, his time with Vivs in the common room…okay. It wasn’t all bad. Parts were good.

Once Brian stopped laughing, Avery continued. “And I’m with Vivs now. Not sure if I ever ended things with Agatha, but I’m quite certain she’s gonna hire a hitman to kill Vivs. Then she’ll just torture me.” He shrugged, no longer caring what Agatha would do to him.

“You and Vivi, it was bound to happen sometime, about time if you ask me!” Brian acknowledged.

Avery just blinked. Had he, before he returned, showed any feelings toward Vivs? If so, was he so obvious that even Brian could pick up on it?

That was slightly disheartening.

“Except for some reason, my brain just isn’t letting me imagine you two make out.” Brian finished, pretending to gag. “Well, she’s a cool chick. Much better then Agatha mind you.” Brian shivered.

Avery just smirked. “Well, we have. Her little cousin walked in on us once during the summer. Poor kid’ll be scarred for life…” He quickly recalled the incident and the subsequent feelings of embarrassment and paranoia.

“About the prank, Donal’s around, somewhere. Either way, we’ve already got a few ideas in the works. Nothing final yet, though. Your two cents, my friend, will be greatly appreciated.” Avery grabbed a cup from the table, filled it with pumpkin juice, and took a sip.

Wow…all the Scoobies are back…cool! Avery thought, mentally celebrating.

“I haven’t many logical ideas for it yet,” Brian admitted, “We could maybe use that sex change thing though, that’d be interesting. Maybe become a girl, seduce Alex Stone, and break his heart.” Brian’s dark brown eyes were wide. “You do know that git is still around, right? I’ve always wanted to toy with that guy.”

“Yeah,” Avery said, taking another long swig of pumpkin juice. “Either way, I’ve been considering something with the gender-bender spell too. I’ll fill you in later.” Avery said, looking cautiously around him. “But yeah, mess with Alex’s mind. I won’t stop you. I’ve heard nothing about it…” He smirked, figuring he could put his prefect status to good use.

“Long as you do the messing… I’d rather steer clear of him.” Avery remembered the ball and the make-shift duel he and Alex had. Alex had nearly killed him with various electricity blasts and he had yet to fully recover from the humiliation. He was not very keen on risking his neck messing with Alex (for Alex just might retaliate and possibly smear his brains on a conveniently located wall). Though Avery would never admit it, he was scared of the fifth-year.

“You know about classes…” Brian began thoughtfully. “I’m not quite sure I want to do much of those this year,” he sniggered, “especially Herbology. Screw that, I get enough about plants back home. My mom was too messed up to tend to her garden, so my dad made me do it. Wasn’t much help of course.” Brian’s past Herbology lessons had mostly been followed by visits to the hospital wing.

“I might just do Charms, Defense Against the Dark Arts, Divination, Muggle Studies, and of course Potions. Unless that’s the class that makes you a girl. I would be embarrassed to look at myself naked,” Brian smirked. “But, it might be a cool thing though too. I’d be able to get into girl’s bathrooms…how sweet is that?”

Avery laughed as Brian rambled about what classes he planned to take (and those he planned to ditch). The kid always was a bit blunt. Not that he cared—he shared many of the same views as Brian. But not the bit about the girl’s bathroom.

“But seriously, you a girl…you must have looked horrific man,” Brian taunted. Avery just glared. He may not have been the most attractive girl, granted, but Vivs didn’t seem to mind.

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