"Harry," Hermione's voice sounded stern. "you're gonna be late for Transfiguration if we don't leave now. And she's as critical about tardiness as Professor Snape."
Harry's thoughts had been wandering since the train incident. He nodded his head with a silent groan as his two best friends left before rising from the Gryffindor table himself. He dreaded going to Professor McGonagall's class as he walked out of the Great Hall and into the Entrance Hall. He knew his grades weren't too good in his Head of House's subject, though slightly better than Snape's own class in the dungeon. The young Potter was startled when he noticed he only had ten minutes and paced himself in a run. The young Gryffindor would have made the trek across the castle had he not collide into another student; school bag flying out of his grasp while all three fell to the floor. You could hear the shatter of his ink wells as Harry's bag was ruined with ink all over his parchment, used and unused, covering every inch as it seeped out. Ink was soaking into his school books and a tear from the shards had sliced through the thin material like a well placed diffindo. "Just what I need," Harry thought bitterly. It was then he realized the student he knocked down was extending a hand while the thirteen year old remained on the floor. It was then Harry studied the fifteen, almost sixteen year old Hufflepuff before him; black Hogwarts robes outlined with gold trimming with the Badger emblem as the crest, black trousers, gray undershirt with gold on the neck trimming, and a gold and black tie to match. Cedric's hair was swept back in a wave, mix between a dark brunette and auburn with sterling grey eyes. His cheekbones were defined with a sight tan where his eyes shone with mirth.
Harry's breath was caught but pushed the feeling aside as a side effect of their collision. But he couldn't deny the Weasley Twins' words, 'pretty boy, Diggory.' A fool could see that Cedric was stunningly attractive and green eyes met grey, darting to his full red lips and back to his eyes.
"Thanks," Harry mumbled as he let the Hufflepuff pull him to his feet and flush to his chest. Harry flushed as he took a step back. Cedric only responded with a soft smile as he replied.
"It's not a problem, I wasn't looking where I was going. You're Harry Potter, correct?"
The young Gryffindor winced slightly, "Yeah," he whispered quietly. He knew like everyone else who had met him, they'd only asked to see his scar and resorted to stare.
"I've seen you play Quidditch, very impressive. You may have the chance to go professional."
Harry almost gapped at the older Hufflepuff, it was the last thing he expected. "You're pretty boy, Diggory." The words were blurted out and the Gryffindor instantly wanted to smack himself as his cheeks turned pink.
Cedric only raised an eyebrow as he grinned, it didn't escape his notice either that Harry's blush was adorable. Secretly pleased the younger boy knew of him as he took note were Harry's gaze went to his lips and almost sighed in relief that he wasn't the only one to find the other attractive. "Hmm, is that what they're calling me?"
Harry ducked in his head in embarrassment, "The twins."
Harry didn't need to elaborate, Cedric knew the twins very well especially for being in the same year. The Hufflepuff bit his bottom lip as he rested a hand on Harry's shoulder as the boy in question darted his gaze to the older boy's. Harry could see grey eyes swimming with emotion as if debating internally, yet it made the Hufflepuff appear even more attractive.
Cedric suddenly looked sheepish, "Oh, Merlin! I made you late for Transfiguration."
Harry looked alarmed for a moment before his shoulders slumped in defeat. "I'm so getting detention. Better than Snape."
Cedric kept his grin as he snorted in laughter, "Not so, I'll accompany you."
Harry gave Cedric an incredulous look yet fell in step with the grey-eyed boy.
The two boys came to a stop a few feet from McGonagall's classroom when Cedric stopped him. Harry's eyebrows knitted together in confusion. Cedric never lost his smile but it grew sheepish, "I almost forgot to repair your stuff."
Harry waved his concerns off, "There's nothing to fix, its all ruined now. My professors' won't be pleased." Harry's ending words came out as a mumble.
The Hufflepuff's smile grew mischievous as he took out his wand. The wand was made of Ash and yet the wood seemed to gleam. Cedric spoke no words as items floated out of Harry's bag. The older boy had a fierce look of concentration. He repaired the ink wells first before proceeding to the next step. The ink from the parchment and books began to separate as the ink flowed flawlessly like a river into the hovering ink wells before sealed. All the items lowered down, relaxed on the concrete floor before Cedric placed one last charm. Sweat almost broke out on the Hufflepuff, "There. I even placed a durable and unbreakable charm on your ink wells. It should keep everything safe if your bag falls again."
Harry was speechless, he had just witnessed Cedric display very advanced magic, non verbally. A lesson not taught until 6th year. Any more and his mouth may have been gaping in awe. There was a lot more to Hufflepuff that Harry never realized. He knew if Hermione was here, she be drilling the prefect with questions.
"It's not a problem, least I could do for ruining your stuff." Without another word did Cedric place a peck on the Gryffindor's cheek, who just sputtered in shocked. His cheeks glowed ruby red before rushing after the Hufflepuff who winked at him before entering his classroom. "Excuse me, Professor McGonagall," came an older voice
The older professor glanced up and expected to see a rushed Harry Potter, being over twenty minutes late. That was the sight that awaited her, with the additional of one of her prized students. A small smile graced her lips, "Diggory, is something the matter?"
Cedric waved off her concerns. "Young Harry got cornered by a few older students in Slytherin. They have detention assigned to you tomorrow night."
Harry didn't know if to laugh or what, here was an older student lying to a professor to keep him out of trouble. Though he grew nervous, Cedric said they were to serve detention with her. Were there actually a few older Slytherins that wanted to torment him as much as Malfoy?
McGonagall only nodded her head, the class watching with intent as Cedric leaned down to whisper in the 13 year old's ear. "I didn't lie. Flint took up the challenge to try to harass you to keep in graces with Draco Malfoy."
Harry could feel Cedric's heated breath in his ear, keeping the young boy's cheeks flushed while he tried to concentrate what was being said. It was after the Hufflepuff left that Hermione noted that her best friend had looked a little flushed, much to young Gryffindor's embarrassment. Harry had pushed the girl's concerns aside, assuring her that he felt fine, though if the young Potter had more difficulty concentrating, that could hardly be his fault.