Sunday, July 01, 2012

A Polarity Reversed

The Potions class had observed the Feast of Saint Valentine with an in-depth study of the Amortencia Solution, which naturally lead to an introduction to all sorts of attracting potions. The lead professor, Thaddeus Halliwell, explained that being able to craft an attractant had its uses.

A bee had crept into the classroom through the open window, and was circling the glowing orbs intently. Several of the students had watchful eyes on the insect, and more than one would cringe as it took wing and dove from light to light. Professor Halliwell waved it off a couple of times before he stopped.

"An object lesson," he said, taking a tiny bottle from a pocket in his robes. "Observe." He walked to the window and unstoppered it. The bee whirled in midair, heading directly for the professor. He put a cotton ball over the mouth of the vial, and the bee returned to buzzing around the light globes. He then tossed the bit of cotton out the window, and the bee followed it. He slammed the window shut. "Now. Turn to page 988 in your text, and create Wigworthy's Attractant."

Spike began preparing her ingredients, grinding the moonstone to a fine powder, adding the crushed vervain, and stirring it to a paste with distilled water. Socks. I will use this to create a pair of socks, and they will all worship at my feet!
It was working well. The potion coagulated nicely, forming strands when she lifted her wand over the potion. Lush concupiscent purple shot through with contentedly glowing gold flecks, swirls of giddy pink. Yes, just as it should be. She carefully adjusted the flame under the cauldron. Don't want this to overheat. Stir one last time. Almost there . . . And then everything went wrong.

The golds tarnished into bitter anxiety; the pink and purple dissolved into despair and jealousy. Spike struggled to correct the potion, adding chocolate and flower petals, but no use. Stirring faster only caused the potion to split and the colors to shatter.

Halliwell looked over her shoulder. "That," he pronounced, "was certainly not the effect we were after, Spike."

She slumped, despondent. "No. No, it was not, professor." It was hard for her to stand next to her cauldron of failed solution, and not just because of the Repelling Potion she had brewed.

"I'll see you in Detention, then, while you prepare three feet of parchment on exactly how this went wrong." Waving a hand in front of his nose, the professor left quickly.

Spike studied the contents. Socks. Socks that would keep someone away. Socks that would make someone not want to notice you, not want to . . . She brightened. Well. This solves some of the problems with Filch, now doesn't it. I should be able to mule anything I want into Hogwarts--as long as I'm careful which socks I'm wearing.

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