Above Average




Harry Potter, contrary to popular belief, was just an average kid. He was of average height for his age, had an average mop of black hair, and average glasses for someone whose relatives didn’t want to spend money on him. He was an average student with average scores, had an average dislike of homework and revision, and had an average skill as a young wizard. He had an average penchant for breaking rules, receiving detention, and losing house points. He had average friends, got into average fights with them and made up again. He had crushes like everybody else and sometimes made an embarrassment of himself around them. Like now.

The flower was one of the first of spring. It had silvery white petals, a silvery gray center, and was on a slender green stem. Harry had picked it immediately from a bunch growing outside along the castle wall, while he was wandering around before lunch.

He shoved it at Draco Malfoy’s chest, who brought his hand up reflexively and caught the flower against his black school robes.

“It’s pretty, like you,” Harry blurted, before scurrying off without a backwards look.

The Great Hall was filled with students eating lunch. Harry dropped into a seat at the long Gryffindor table beside Hermione, moved his plate aside, and began banging his forehead on the table.

“What now?” Hermione asked without looking up from her book.

Harry paused, head resting on the hard surface of the table, and replied in a somewhat choked voice, “I just flirted with Malfoy.”

“You’ve been flirting with him since you were eleven. Can you be more specific?”

Harry made a noise of distress and banged his head some more.




Double Potions was the first class after lunch, with Slytherin as always. Harry was glad that he sat at the front of the room so he didn’t have to look at Malfoy throughout the lesson. His face had taken on a permanent blush, he was certain, since Snape pointed it out.

“Today, we are making the Raspodil Potion. If you’ve done yours correctly, it should be the same color as Mr. Potter’s face. The ingredients are on the board. Get to work.”

“I’ll go get the ingredients,” Harry mumbled to his partner, Dean Thomas, who snickered without malice at his reddened cheeks. He hustled off to the table where bottles, bags, and bowls held unmeasured amounts of what they needed for the potion.

Harry’s step faltered on return to his station. Resting on his closed potions textbook on the table was a black flower. At first, Harry thought it was dead, but as he got closer, he saw that the petals were fresh. The center of the black flower was a brilliant green and the stem a reddish gold. It was very pretty, now that he’d looked at it. Beneath it was a scrap of parchment with a note written on it in slanted ink: ‘This doesn’t come close to you.’

Harry looked towards the back of the room. Malfoy’s head was down as he began counting newt tails. There was a pinkish tinge to his cheeks.

Harry Potter, contrary to popular belief, was just an average kid. However, on occasion, he had an above average day.



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