thesteppyone (thesteppyone) wrote in rwhg_ldws,
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rwhg_ldws

Round 3, Challenge 9: Voting

Below the cuts are the drabbles and poll for Round 3, Challenge 9 of rwhg_ldws

• Please mark the drabbles out of 10 using the poll below.
• If you are taking part, please do not vote for your own drabble.
• Please mark ALL of the drabbles. If you don't, none of your scores will count.
• The order of the drabbles random.

Feedback is welcome, just no flaming, bitching or the such. I'll be having words if there is. *looks menacing*

Challenge 9: Drabbles

Drabble 1
Author: lauryne78
Title: And Now We'll Hear From the Best Man...
Rating: G
Word Count: 5 x 100 = 500 (yay math!)
A/N(optional): Harry wormed his way in here somehow. Don't know how that happened, but he was persistent. :D

“It would be cliché to tell you it was love at first sight. Actually, it was anything but. Ron spent the first months of first year complaining about her or avoiding her. And Hermione? She nearly nagged the poor bloke to death – s'pose that hasn't changed. Still, I'm actually glad to say it wasn't love at first sight…the idea you can automatically love someone…it's too easy. Ron and Hermione had to work to get where they are, and when I look at them now, I think I speak for all of us when I say the struggle was worth it…

-

…And to call it struggle is no exaggeration. I've been around more of their 'bickering' than most, and I have to say there were some rows that got so loud I thought my ears would never stop ringing. It's totally fitting that a couple that has always been so loud and contentious themselves had their first kiss in the middle of a raging battle. That was one of the few moments I can remember when they were completely quiet in each other's presence, though I do prefer to block out the reason why neither of them was able to speak…

-

…I'd rather remember a different time that Ron rendered Hermione speechless – or, well, nearly speechless. I'm thinking of Christmas fifth year when he made a rather misguided attempt to buy her perfume for a present. He never let me smell it before he wrapped it for her, but I have it on good authority from Ginny that its, erm, 'aroma' was not soon forgotten, nor was the look on Hermione's face when she opened the box. Thankfully, Ron's gotten better over the years at knowing what Hermione likes and holding the reception here in the rose garden was his idea…

-

…Who would’ve guessed all those years ago that he’d have such good taste, right? But Ron has really come a long way in the time I’ve known him. So has Hermione, for that matter. Watching them grow – both as individuals and towards each other – has, despite all my joking, been one of the great pleasures in my life. It would take me far too long to cover everything they’ve meant to me over the years, but I hope that you’ve all gotten at least a brief taste of how important they’ve been every step of the way. They’ve taught me…

-

…they’ve taught me about family, about love, and about persistence and hope. Without them, I’d never have made it through everything I had to do. They’ve touched me, changed me, and changed each other. For so long, we were three friends, standing together against everything else. When they started down a path of their own without me, it was odd, to say the least. But I also knew it was utterly right. I could not be happier for them. I’d like you all to join me in toasting their long and happy future. To the newest Mr. and Mrs. Weasley!!”





Drabble 2
Author: maybe1ce
Title: A Sense of Time
Rating: PG
Word Count: 100x5=500


Six seconds after The End, Harry Potter couldn't see a bloody thing.

It was a blessing, honestly, to be lost for a moment in a blur of relieved tears and embracing arms. At least he didn't need to look to closely at this new, uncertain world.

When he finally emerged, Harry was blinded by colour. The golden morning light shone through the cracked and broken stained glass of the Great Hall. It's stonework still scarred and smoking, the room was now filled with glowing jewels of light -- the colours of his Beginning.

But first, what Harry really needed was a rest.

******

Six hours after the battle, Ron and Hermione hadn't had enough time to rest, but there was work to be done.

The Great Hall buzzed with activity, but the pair was still too numb to speak. Walking silently to their usual table, they were startled by a familiar shriek, and turned to see Lavender Brown racing towards them, arms outstretched. Ron stepped back reflexively, but Lavender was not to be deterred. She ran up and threw her arms...

Around Hermione.

"You saved me!" Lavender squealed as she squeezed her shocked schoolmate tightly.

"I'll...er...get you some toast..." Ron stammered, slowly backing away.

******

Six weeks after parting from her friends after the Victory at Hogwarts, Luna Lovegood burned the toast.

Her father wasn't the man he used to be, but at least he was out of Azkaban. Their home was a wreck, but at least it wasn't the Malfoy's cellar. She sighed and fanned the smoky air.

"Bargle-snouted Soulsuckers!" Xenophilius shouted in terror, cowering against the remains of his printing press. "I smell them! They're coming for me!" He curled into a ball, sobbing loudly as Luna embraced him.

"It's OK, Daddy. They aren't real." She rocked softly. "None of it is real."

******

Six months later, Lucius Malfoy still couldn't believe that it was real.

What a bitter potion it was to swallow. So many years of careful work, only to reach 50 years of age with a nation that hated him, a wife that pitied him, and a son who resented him. He uncorked a small bottle and downed its contents, wincing at the acrid taste.

"Speaking of bitter potions," Lucius sneered, although, technically, there was no one else there to speak of anything at all.

He ignored the salt on his lips as he sunk into a stupor, a merciful sleep.

******

Six years after, Ron's arm tingled as he held his surprisingly heavy godson.

James clutched at his finger with his impossibly tiny fist, and those soft but strong fingers gave his uncle a clear message.

Ron was a Grown Up.

He was a married man, 25 years old, but part of him had been playing house. But, now, this was Harry and Ginny's son. They were the ones who would give, protect, and love. And, finally, Ron felt ready for that, too.

Ron turned to speak to Hermione, but his eyes were full of tears. He couldn't see a bloody thing.





Drabble 3
Author: miss_daizy
Title: Falling Through Time
Rating: PG
Word Count: 100 x 5
Author's Note: Thanks to fabulous betas for eagle eyes and restraining my flights of fancy. Good luck to my fellow drabblers. I'm flattered to have made it this far with such great writers.

She's always bobbing on her toes or practically dancing in her seat. Her hand waves in the air, her hair crackling with excitement, racking up more house points than the rest of the Gryffindors combined. Sometimes she seems to almost shiver with excitement when she gets the question, any question, right, which she always does. She's annoying, but he doesn't seem able to look away. It makes him squirm to see her trying so hard for attention. He could tell her that it isn't that easy, that it hurts to fail, but she wouldn't listen. He can see that already.


He's talking that loud on purpose. All the way across the common room, she can hear him nattering on...Scabbers this, Scabbers that, Scabbers, Scabbers, Scabbers... as though she is worth less to him than a rat. He wants her know that he's ignoring her presence. Did Scabbers help him with his homework and tell him not to eat too much and remind him to write home? Did Scabbers laugh at his jokes? He's never carried on about her that way, which doesn't stop his voice from echoing in her mind. Hermione, c'mere...Hermione, listen to this, Hermione, Hermione, Hermione...


The problem with girls is that they smell. It's not a bad smell (like Fred and George's room, full of old socks and strange potions), but it isn't a comforting smell either (like his mum's, warm as fresh biscuits and clean laundry). It's different from anything he's noticed before; both exciting and frightening. With their hair and their skin, when he's lucky enough to get close to some of it, they knock him off-balance, leaving him a step behind in more ways than one. Not that it means anything but Hermione smells the best. He wonders if she wears perfume.


Jealousy has a flavor, bitter and sharp, which burns in her nose and throat. It seasons her food and spoils her drinks. Her anger tastes like burnt offerings, made of charred hopes and ashen wishes. Choking the acid heartache down, she feels the bile rising in her mouth. She gags on her own sour imaginings before they churn her stomach into knots. Loneliness is bland and tasteless, heaped high in front of her but leaving her empty. Late at night, she images love tasting like chocolate. She hopes she'll find out one day. She hopes it will be with him.


He wonders if she's awake, as aware of him as he is of her. He gets his answer when she reaches for his hand. "Please," she whispers, and he knows she needs more than his touch can give. Her hands are so small, which he always knew, but he feels a need to protect her when he's holding one of them. She's looking for reassurances he can't offer; that they aren't on the run now, that today's attack didn't happen, that it will end. He wraps his hand around hers. "Go to sleep," he whispers back. "I won't let go."





Drabble 4
Author: shocolate
Title: Five, Four, Three, Two, One...
Rating: R
Word Count: 5 x 100
A/N(optional): warning: angst.

Sight
You lose your sight first.

You're sure that your eyes are open, peering into the darkness, straining hard to make out shadow or form, to see Harry still chained to the wall beside you, and making that terrible keening noise.

It is painful to blink, but everything hurts and you don't know if your eyes are physically damaged or destroyed by a curse.

Or if they work perfectly and the room is in darkness.

You close your eyes, though the gesture is meaningless, and you picture Hermione's eyes, her smile, the look on her face as you kissed her goodbye.


Sound
When sound goes you are left with the final echo of Harry's final scream rolling around inside your skull.

You shake your head to dislodge it and pain shoots through you, ripping a soundless scream from your own throat which rumbles silently inside you; you sob noiselessly and shamelessly, hanging in your chains, alone in the darkness.

You daren't think about being alone, so you focus inwards and listen to all that remains of Harry, dying away as the echo fades.

That shouldn't be the last thing you ever hear, and you try to remember the sound of Hermione's voice.


Smell
If only smell would fail, as well.

You don't identify the strange, billowing heat until you smell burning flesh, and you uselessly turn your head away.

You've always taken smell for granted, and now you gasp for shallow breaths through your dry mouth as you try to cling onto phantom fragrant memories of your mother cooking breakfast, of lying in the long summer grass with Hermione in your arms, your face buried in her perfumed hair.

You cannot block out the smell and you fling your head back against stone, trying to take it all away, reaching for true darkness.


Taste
The taste of blood in your mouth is harsh and metallic and you choke as it dribbles down the back of your throat.

Your tongue is dry and swollen and fills your mouth and you gag and cough and remember the taste of chocolate melting on your tongue, how much you enjoy Firewhisky burning smoothly down your throat, above all the silky, cool, peppermint slide of Hermione's tongue between freshly brushed teeth and into your mouth.

Your cracked lips open and you reach for her without conscious thought, knowing the end is close, that you will be with her, soon.


Touch
The flames have reached you, drying the sweat that prickled your skin, then burning away the hairs on your bare arms.

It feels like a loving caress, like Hermione's cool hands running over your body, and you try to cling to that coolness, to block out the heat that surrounds you.

The flames lick closer and the scars on your arms burn first, as if the evil thoughts within them had waited years to ignite, making ropes of pain fly around your body.

One last deep breath for a soundless scream scorches you inside and out.

And it is over.






Challenge 9: Voting

Poll #1570888 Round 3, Chellenge 9: Voting
This poll is closed.

Drabble 1

Mean: 6.81 Median: 7 Std. Dev 2.65
1
2(5.6%)
2
1(2.8%)
3
4(11.1%)
4
1(2.8%)
5
0(0.0%)
6
5(13.9%)
7
6(16.7%)
8
6(16.7%)
9
5(13.9%)
10
6(16.7%)

Drabble 2

Mean: 7.19 Median: 8 Std. Dev 2.38
1
2(5.6%)
2
1(2.8%)
3
0(0.0%)
4
1(2.8%)
5
5(13.9%)
6
1(2.8%)
7
4(11.1%)
8
10(27.8%)
9
8(22.2%)
10
4(11.1%)

Drabble 3

Mean: 8.03 Median: 9 Std. Dev 2.22
1
1(2.8%)
2
0(0.0%)
3
1(2.8%)
4
2(5.6%)
5
1(2.8%)
6
2(5.6%)
7
3(8.3%)
8
5(13.9%)
9
11(30.6%)
10
10(27.8%)

Drabble 4

Mean: 6.94 Median: 7 Std. Dev 2.48
1
1(2.8%)
2
2(5.6%)
3
2(5.6%)
4
1(2.8%)
5
3(8.3%)
6
3(8.3%)
7
7(19.4%)
8
6(16.7%)
9
5(13.9%)
10
6(16.7%)

Tags: challenge 9, challenge: voting, round: 3
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