Character: Harry Potter
Disclaimer: JKR owns. I only play. You do not sue.
Length: 900 words
Summary: "I officially declare today to be over." Harry has a really bad day.
Note: Originally written for a challenge (fic must include Draco Malfoy, the giant squid, Professor Sprout, Firewhisky, Crookshanks, and a potion experiment gone wrong) at hogwarts_elite. First-place winner, ~900 words.
Concrit: Always welcome and appreciated.
Harry walked into greenhouse three, rolling his shoulders and lamenting the fact that it was once again Monday. It wasn't that he hated Mondays especially, but Mondays meant Potions before lunch. Potions meant Snape and all the resulting unpleasantness.
"All right, class?" came Professor Sprout's voice from behind a large crate filled to the brim with a foul-smelling brown substance. Harry threw his schoolbag down by the wall and joined Ron and Hermione, who were bickering about something.
"Today we will pair up and work on the Venomous Tentacula saplings from last week. Be sure to wear your dragonhide gloves; they've grown a little and are getting feisty. Now, there is something new I'd like you to do today," said Professor Sprout, getting up and walking to stand in front of the crate she'd been crouching behind. "Neville Longbottom has made a startling discovery over the summer. It turns out that dragon dung is not the best kind of fertiliser for magical plants." She gave a kind smile to Neville, who blushed. Professor Sprout took a look around the greenhouse and raised both eyebrows. "Llama dung, class, is the best sort of fertiliser there is," she said.
Harry frowned. Llamas?
It was only the beginning, as it turned out.
After Herbology, as Harry took his seat in the Potions classroom, his eyes almost popped out of their sockets as he watched Snape roll in a large box that rested atop a trolley. The box was filled with coarse thick fur.
"You will notice," said Snape, "that we will be using a new ingredient in our Fearlessness Formula today. Through a series of revolutionary experiments, Draco Malfoy has established that llama fur enhances the effectiveness of any potion." Harry turned around. Malfoy was standing there with a smug look on his face, buffing his nails against the front of his robes. Harry wanted to punch him. Snape continued to speak. "You will add three llama hairs to your potion just before the final solution reaches boiling point. The rest of your instructions are on the blackboard. Extra ingredients are in the store cupboard. You have two hours."
Harry received zero marks again for -- predictably -- forgetting to add the llama fur. Even Neville received marks for his potion, despite the fact that his cauldron exploded twenty minutes into the lesson. Harry left the classroom with his head threatening to explode.
At lunch, Ron insisted on loudly praising today's food selection, which turned out to be llama hamburgers with mash and llama milk to wash it all down. Seamus was passing around a bottle of Firewhisky under the table and Harry actually took several swigs, even though he didn't like to drink before five in the afternoon. At least the Firewhisky enabled Harry to doze right through History of Magic, but he thought he distinctly heard Binns deliver a lecture on the llama rebellion of 1835. Harry told himself firmly that it had to be the Firewhisky, because whoever's heard of a llama rebellion, really?
Hagrid showed them pictures of llamas in Care of Magical Creatures and Harry was beginning to feel slightly panicked. He was definitely starting to hate Mondays for the mere fact of them being Mondays. After dinner (twice-fried llama liver with chips and cucumber salad), Harry decided to go take a walk by the lake. Ron and Hermione didn't want to join him and so Harry grabbed his cloak and walked out by himself.
It looked like it was about to rain as Harry exited the castle. The grounds were deserted, and the only sounds Harry heard were the rustle of leaves in the Forbidden Forest and Fang's loud barks from Hagrid's cabin. He thought about visiting Hagrid, but decided against it, recalling the Care of Magical Creatures lesson and those damned llamas. Harry walked across the edge of the lake, occasionally casting suspicious looks at the giant squid, which was splashing around in the far end. Occasionally, it would snake out a tentacle and spell out what looked suspiciously like "llama" in the air.
When the first few drops of rain hit Harry's face, he hurried back inside the castle. Monday was over and things just had to get better tomorrow. All Harry needed to do was go to sleep. He made his way up to Gryffindor Tower, mounting two steps at a time. When he walked through the portrait hole and sat down in an armchair by the fire, things seemed like they were completely back to normal. Hermione was reading a book in a chair next to him, Ron was playing chess with Dean, and Seamus was passing around the Firewhisky.
Crookshanks stretched out on the hearthrug in front of Harry and purred. Harry looked up at Hermione and grinned. She smiled back. "Did you know that llama intestines are--"
Harry couldn't take it anymore. "ARGH NO LLAMAS EVERYWHERE! WHY IS EVERYTHING ABOUT LLAMAS?"
Hermione blinked. "Didn't you read the memo?" The chess game across the room suddenly got very quiet as Ron and Dean stared at Harry. Seamus was sitting frozen, his bottle of Firewhisky at his lips.
Harry felt his frustration mount at their uncomprehending expressions. "MEMO? WHAT MEMO? WHY DO I ALWAYS MISS ALL THE MEMOS?"
Hermione pointed at the noticeboard, her eyes wide and overly sympathetic. Harry sprang up from his chair and stalked across the common room.
Sure enough, pinned to the noticeboard was a piece of parchment with a picture of a llama and International Llama Appreciation Day! below it in large letters, followed by today's date.
Harry tore the memo down from the noticeboard and crumpled it up in his hand.
"I officially declare today to be over. There will be no more llamas."
He tossed the balled-up parchment into the rubbish bin below the noticeboard and stalked upstairs to his dormitory.
Llamas. For crying out loud.