"Wow, did you see the way the first year stared at Chaewon? She looked like she got struck with cupid's arrow," Yujin says as she, Chaewon and Minju walk out of the Great Hall, heading to the courtyard.
Chaewon flips her hair and jokes, "I mean, everyone falls in love with me at some point, don't they?"
Minju raises her eyebrows, "If by everyone you mean people who don't know you or aren't scared of you, which is, like no one, then yeah," she laughs.
Chaewon scoffs and turns to Minju, "Are you really one to talk when the whole school really thinks you're a quiet and pretty nerd?"
Minju smiles and looks back at Chaewon, "So you think I'm pretty."
"Wait, no, that's not what I-" Chaewon throws her hands up in frustration, "Ugh god I hate you."
"The feeling is mutual," Minju retorts.
They stare at each other for a while longer until they both look away with a loud "hmph".
"Okay break it up children," Yujin cuts in between them and pats both their shoulders, "Now say sorry to one another and we can go on our merry way."
"Children? Yujin you're like 7," Chaewon says.
Yujin takes a step forward and sticks her tongue out at Chaewon, "Yeah, but you look like you're 7," she laughs and runs away.
"Oi Ahn Yujin!" Chaewon runs after Yujin, leaving Minju to sigh and run after their friends.
When she catches up, they're at the courtyard and Chaewon is pulling Yujin's ear playfully.
Minju starts, "Chaewon stop bullying--," but ends up in a fit of laughter because Yujin starts to pull Chaewon's cheeks.
Chaewon stares at Yujin, and ends up laughing along with Minju because she realises how ridiculous they look.
"I swear I always feel 7 whenever we're together," Yujin manages to say before she too joins in the laughter.
All of their parents were close friends, so the three of them spent a lot of time together even when they were younger.
To Chaewon, holidays were always spent with family, presents, magic, food, Kim Minju and Ahn Yujin.
Though Chaewon's elder sister, Eunbi, joined them sometimes, it was mostly just the three of them.
When Eunbi left for Hogwarts, their meetings only increased in frequency.
From playing and arguing to learning spells and jinxes, they spent almost all their time together.
They also once discussed what they thought their future houses would be.
Chaewon thought of herself as a Ravenclaw because she insisted that she was smart, and she was (probably), but she eventually agreed with the two that she'll probably get sorted into Slytherin.
Yujin, with all her bravery and justice (& dumbassery, Chaewon thought), would be in Gryffindor.
But Minju was a tough one, because she was disgustingly smart and witty, but also really hard-working and patient.
(Her being friends with Chaewon and Yujin proved the second point)
In the end, they settled on Minju being whatever she wanted to be because Eunbi once mentioned that "the hat takes your choice into consideration".
And since Eunbi was in Ravenclaw and (supposedly) smart, Chaewon believed her.
Being the oldest, Chaewon was the first to enter Hogwarts, and just as expected, she was sorted into Slytherin, though it took a bit longer than some other students.
Minju, who entered the year after, became one of the most talked about students after the sorting ceremony due to being the one and only hatstall that year. Though it was mostly because she was "the prettiest girl Hogwarts had ever seen", according to some annoying 2nd year Slytherins.
(What no one knows is how she might've rushed the hat because she didn't enjoy all the attention)
When it was revealed that she was one of the top few students in her year, the attention only grew and she became one of the most popular girls in the school.
Chaewon knew how she wasn't very comfortable with the attention, especially from the older male seniors who'd sometimes wolf-whistle at her, so she walked with her to protect her whenever she could.
With the two always hanging out, it wasn't long before people also noticed Chaewon.
Then came along the youngest of them, Ahn Yujin.
Her sorting ceremony wasn't anything special, with the Sorting Hat annoucing Gryffindor almost immediately after it was put on.
Being the person she was, her housemates quickly warmed up to her and affectionately referred to her as "the funny loud first year".
While already having some popularity on her own because of her height and attractiveness, her always being with Minju and Chaewon made her even talked about.
Yujin's entire first year was filled with many boys asking her out (and even some girls), but her number didn't compare to Minju's.
Minju had a love letter sent to her almost every week, all of which ended up being incendio'd by Chaewon.
Chaewon on the other hand, never ever receives anything because of how intimidated people were by her.
(Even though she could be such a ball of fluff around her friends)
Part of the reason why people feared her so much was because of what happened around the start of her 2nd year.
Minju was pretty. Chaewon knew at least that much the first time they met.
In fact it seemed that everyone did, with all the stares Minju got the first time they played at the playground together, with a boy coming up to her with flowers.
What Chaewon didn't expect was how Minju looked like she wanted to run away, but still accepted the flowers because she didn't want to hurt his feelings.
Yujin was playing at another part of the playground with some other children, so she wasn't able to see what happened, but Chaewon told her about it, and from that day on, Chaewon and Yujin formed the Minju Protection Squad (without her knowledge), where they'd scan people to make sure they didn't come on too strongly and made sure that Minju was never uncomfortable.
Naturally, the Protection Squad continued in Hogwarts, though it was only Chaewon, since Yujin didn't enter yet.
The boys at the playground usually watched from afar, because they were too shy to go up to Minju when she was with the two.
(Though it was probably also because of the death stares they'd get from the protection squad.)
In Hogwarts, though, the boys became more forward and aggressive, and Chaewon couldn't always be around Minju because of her classes, so it was up to Minju to reject boys on her own.
And reject boys she did. Most of them would stop bothering her after the first time, but there were still the select few who would endlessly bother her, somehow thinking that their persistence would gain them a date with her.
One particular 5th year Slytherin guy named Lee Jisung was extremely persistent and the very definition of a douchebag.
If Minju was the most popular girl in school, he was one of the most popular guys.
Girls from other houses would fawn over how good-looking he was and how he supposedly was such a sweetheart, though every Slytherin knew otherwise, including Chaewon.
He'd boast about how his father was one of the best Aurors in the Ministry and was probably on the way to becoming the next leader of the department.
(Which would've sounded kinda cool to Chaewon if she didn't personally know the Minister of Magic himself, who happened to be Yujin's uncle)
He was also a part of the Slug Club, which many thought was due to his expertise in Potions, but hearing how Professor Slughorn was from Eunbi, Chaewon bet it was because of his connections.
Chaewon would've thought he was attractive if he didn't consistently talk about which girls he's had in bed in the Slytherin dungeon with his friends.
Most of all, he was popular because he was the Slytherin's star keeper.
After finding out that Minju was his new target, she had to do something. There was absolutely no way she'd ever let him play with one of her best friends like that.
(A nagging voice tells Chaewon that it might not be the only reason, but she ignores it)
The first thing she does the next morning is warn Minju about this boy, and sure enough, by the end of the day, he'd already try to profess his "love" for Minju.
Which, thank god for Chaewon, ended up in a rejection from Minju. But he persisted.
He'd find her in between classes and try to walk her to her next class, much to the displeasure of Chaewon and his fangirls.
Almost always, though, he'd be unsuccessful, because Chaewon would appear and pull Minju away from him.
The only time he seemed to have her to himself was every Friday, where Minju would wait at the courtyard for Chaewon's Charms class to end.
Before the school year started, they agreed to meet at least once every week (though obviously they met more because of Minju's irresistibility) to talk and complain about their professors and housemates. The left side of the lake (nearer to the Whomping Willow) ended up being the perfect place because most students pass through the other to go to Hogsmeade.
Friday happened to be the day they ended the earliest, with Minju ending half an hour before Chaewon did, so they fixed it as their meeting day.
Unfortunately, Professor Flitwick had the habit of ending class late, so Minju always waited a little more than half an hour.
What was even more unfortunate was Jisung ending the same time as Minju, so he'd always try to flirt with her while she was waiting.
Every single time she rejected him, the more aggressive he'd be.
Chaewon once caught him telling Minju a dirty joke, but thank god Minju didn't understand it.
'Minju really is too pure for this world,' Chaewon thought.
She gave Jisung one of her death glares, and the boy backed off, but not without a snarl and an insult, both of which Chaewon completely ignored.
That night, the Slytherin dungeon was pretty empty, save for a few people studying and Jisung's group of friends.
Chaewon walked in and made eye contact with Jisung, who gestured her to walk over and talk to him.
She ignored him and tried to walk to her room, but he grabbed her arm.
She peered over and noticed everyone staring, especially Jisung's group of friends. She raised her eyebrows at them and they immediately looked away, pretending to be engaged in a separate conversation.
He towered over her, "I don't know what your problem is, brat, but I'd appreciate it if you'd stop getting in the way of me trying to win Minju."
Win Minju??? Was Minju an inanimate object to be won now?
But she knew better than to try and argue with a wall, so she simply stared at him and asked, "Yeah? What if I don't?"
"Oh, I know you. Daughter of once-potioneer Kim Taeyeon, who's currently employed under the ministry," he shook his head, "What's a potioneer even doing in the ministry? Being an admin?" he mocked, "I'm sure you know, but my dad is," he paused and smirked, "Well he's pretty close to the minister. So you really should stop. You know I can-"
"Get my mother fired? Get me expelled?" Chaewon cut him off, "Yeah... you could try. I wouldn't exactly suggest it, but... you could try," she took a few steps toward her room after saying that, before stopping in her tracks.
Turning back to Jisung, she said, "Actually, since we're apparently threatening people now, I'd like to just mention that you'd better stop making Minju uncomfortable with your terrible, disgusting pick-up lines before I shut you up myself."
Chaewon could almost see his entire body shake with anger at being provoked, and she just laughed, "See you 'round, son of great auror," she turned back to the direction of her room.
"Let's see who'll get the last laugh," he spat, then walked back to his friends.
Chaewon chuckled and continued walking to her room.
It seemed like the boy didn't take her threat seriously, because on the Tuesday of the next week, she found him standing too close to Minju, trying to show her something on his phone.
Chaewon walked closer and heard parts of their conversation (really, it was him just talking and Minju listening).
"Yeah, so this is a really good date spot. If you were my girlfriend I'd totally bring you there and we could have some fun-" he stopped when he noticed Chaewon's presence.
"Chaewon!" Minju exclaimed and ran to her side, locking arms with her.
Oh, sweet Minju, not even noticing what the boy was trying to imply.
Jisung glared at Chaewon threateningly, which Chaewon returned with a menacing look.
"I hope you didn't forget our little conversation the other night, Chaewon," he smiled.
Chaewon noticed the change in the way he referred to her.
What a joke, pretending to be nice in front of Minju.
"Oh, you mean the night you threatened me, a "brat"?" she did the inverted commas with her fingers, "Yeah. I hope you didn't forget that either."
He leaned closer to Chaewon, whispering with clenched teeth, "You really shouldn't try me, brat."
He then pulled away and smiled at Minju, "I'll see you on Friday."
God, Chaewon hated how fake he looked.
After walking away from him, Minju turned to Chaewon, "I know he's annoying and you're just trying to protect me, but if you get hurt doing that, I swear to god Chaewon, I'll cease being your friend immediately."
"As if I'd get hurt by that douche. The boy can't even enter the Slug Club with his own achievements, let alone win me in a fight."
"A magical duel, yeah. In a physical fight though, anyone with a pair of eyes can see that he'll destroy you, especially with those lackeys of his," Minju stopped and took Chaewon's hand, looking into her eyes, "Promise me you'll stop trying to pick a fight with him?"
Chaewon flushed at how gently Minju was holding her, and stuttered out, "I... I won't promise that I'll stop trying to fight him, but I promise I won't put a scratch on him."
Minju wore the brightest smile after that and continued walking, not letting go of Chaewon's hand.
'Oh god, any feeling but this,' Chaewon thought.
The next week was hell.
Jisung continued trying to get Minju's attention, with each attempt being worse than the previous.
On Wednesday he tried to use the "Was your dad a baker?" line, but Chaewon dragged Minju away before he could complete the second part of the line.
As usual, he scowled at her and gave her a threatening glare, which, of course, she ignored.
Thank god for Minju being a pure, sweet soul.
She didn't understand half his disgusting lines, which Chaewon thinks was a blessing in itself.
Jisung, on the other hand, was beyond angry at how Chaewon wasn't following his orders, and also annoyed at how Minju didn't seem to understand anything.
He went back to the Slytherin dungeon and slammed his hand on the table, startling his lackeys.
"It's bloody annoying how that bitch doesn't understand my lines. She can't possibly be that clueless," he seethed, "And don't get me started on that brat. She just keeps getting in my way even though I told her not to."
One of his lackeys spoke up, "U-um. Don't you think that... maybe she has a good reason for that? Like maybe her mother is bigger than you think?"
Jisung turned to him and raised an eyebrow, "Are you a bloody idiot? My father is going to be the next head auror. Do you think anyone other than the minister is bigger than that?"
"W-well no, but,"
"Yeah. No. No one is bigger than that. She just doesn't know what she's going up against," he exhaled, "If I don't get Minju by this friday, the girl's mom is gonna get fired whether she likes it or not. And Minju will know what I want this time."
Somehow thursday passed quietly, and Chaewon was thankful she didn't have to angrily glare at anyone for once and could peacefully walk with Minju.
And yet, she didn't know why, but she had a bad feeling about friday.
When friday came, Chaewon went through her earlier classes feeling jittery, and praying to every god she knew that Professor Flitwick would end on time that day.
She thanked the gods after, because lo and behold, he actually ended earlier than the lesson was supposed to.
Powered with adrenaline, she ran to the courtyard, and arrived just in time to see Jisung grabbing Minju's arm the way he did to her in the Slytherin dungeon.
Minju desperately tried to pry his hands off hers, but with the difference in strength, it felt like a tickle to Jisung.
Seeing how afraid Minju looked, Chaewon lost all sense of reason and raised her fist up, preparing to hit him.
She made eye contact with Minju, who stared at her with warning, reminding her of their promise.
"Oh look, your knight in shining armour is here," Jisung scoffed, "This is perfect."
He raised his voice, making sure people in the vicinity could hear him.
"My dear, why are you pretending to not like this? You weren't like this last night," he caressed Minju's face, which painted only a horrified expression.
The people around them stared at the two, and their mouths were agape when they realised what he'd just implied.
"Yeah, you guys should've seen her last night. So so eager," he dramatically spoke and Minju looked like she was about to cry, "And god her face when I bent her over and-"
"Mmmphfhpmmh," Jisung tried to speak, but his tongue was stuck to the roof of his mouth.
Everyone gasped in shock and horror, including Minju.
A second year Slytherin just jinxed a fifth year.
In the courtyard.
Where everyone could see.
'Oh I'm so fucked' Chaewon thought to herself.
But there were more important things to do now, like clear Minju's name.
"So if it wasn't obvious enough, this guy," Chaewon pointed to Jisung, who was still trying to speak, but to no avail, "was lying, because no girl in their right mind would sleep with this douchebag, no offence to the girls who already did," she took a breath, "And if any of you even try to spread something like this around, I will personally ensure you either end up as quiet as this douchebag right now, or you have your whole face rearranged by yours truly."
The students still had their mouths wide open, partly because it was unbelievable, but mostly because it was bloody impressive.
"Show's over, I really think all of you should leave before the professors come and get mad at me," Chaewon sighed and thought about her impending doom.
"You too, Minju. They'll link this to you and you'd get in trouble even though it was all me," Chaewon shooed Minju, who looked like she didn't want to leave, "I mean it. Go."
And Minju went.
From the courtyard, Chaewon could see the students making way for someone, which meant the professors were arriving at the scene of crime.
She sighed again, but looked over at Jisung, who was still struggling to talk, and Chaewon laughed, "Yeah, this was so worth it."
Both Jisung and her were taken to the Headmistress' office, where Professor McGonagall (she insisted everyone still refer to her by professor) was waiting for them, back faced away from her table.
When she turned around, she had a slight look of surprise before she shook her head.
"I have to say, when I heard about a student jinxing another, I definitely didn't expect you to be either one, Miss Kim."
Chaewon looked slightly guilty; she really liked the professor.
"I... Yeah I'm sorry," Chaewon said. The floor seemed to be much more interesting than the professor's look of disappointment.
"Somebody please explain to me what happened," Professor McGonagall looked at the other professors who brought them there.
Filch, who was one of them, spoke up, "Not sure what happened, but when we got there, this boy hadn't been able to speak, ma'am."
"Thank you, Argus," she nodded to him, "While it is rahter surprising, maybe even slightly impressive," she muttered under her breath, "that you know such a jinx, Miss Kim, it is still very much against the rules to jinx another student. Now I'll give you a chance to explain yourself, and maybe the severity of your punishment would be lessened."
"I... don't really have an excuse to give, professor. He was harassing a friend and spouting lies about her, so I did what I thought was right so that he'd stop talking. It just so happened that I, uh... thought of using that," she looked up at the professor for a moment before looking back down, sheepishness evident in her voice.
"Yeah, so you should get her expelled or something. How dare she do this to me," Jisung tried to walk towards Chaewon, seemingly asking for a fight, but Filch held him back.
"Harassing a friend?" Professor McGonagall probed, ignoring Jisung's childish outburst.
"He's been... um, sexually harassing her for the past few weeks, actually. He'd tell her disgusting things that'd make her feel uncomfortable, and he tried to lie about having had her last night right before I jinxed him," Chaewon looked up, but keep the eye contact this time, "He also threatened me when I told him to stop, saying his father could get my mother fired from the ministry."
McGonagall could see the genuine anger in her eyes.
"Oh, not this again," she heaved a sigh, "This is the fifth case this term, and I believe we've already spoken to you about you threatening students, Mr Lee," she rubbed her temples, "It pains me to have to say this, but we're revoking your privilege to play quidditch."
Jisung looked as if he'd been wronged, and started begging, "You can't just cancel quidditch! Yeah, maybe I lied about what I said just now in the courtyard, but it's not as if that woman understood anything I said the past few weeks, and Slytherin wouldn't have a chance if I didn't play!"
"Then maybe you should've heeded my advice when I was still being nice to you, Mr Lee," McGonagall nodded at him, then turned to Chaewon, "And as for you, young lady," she was about to continue when the door opened.
"Dad!" Jisung exclaimed, "I knew you'd come!"
"I heard my son got jinxed, so I came as fast as I could. Sorry to bother you, Minerva," Jisung's father said, his voice low and deep.
'At least the father has manners,' Chaewon thought, then looked at the owner of the voice, 'Wait. He looks really familiar.'
"So what happened here? Why did he-" the father looked around, and when his eyes landed on Chaewon, his eyes widened, "Oh. Chaewon? Not sure if you remember, but we met briefly at the hit wizard commendation party."
Oh. Right. They met when her mom received an award for... kicking ass or something. From what she could remember, he was a very nice and funny gentleman.
"Oh, yes. You were there with the other aurors, weren't you, sir?"
"Yes, yes. Wait, were you the one who jinxed my boy?" he made the connection, and looked at Chaewon pretty intensely.
"Miss Kim was trying to protect a friend from your son's promiscuity, James," McGonagall cut in, "It seems he's also been using your name to instill fear, I'm afraid."
James frowned and turned to Jisung, "Is it true?"
Jisung looked stunned and stuttered, "Y-yeah, but um, it was just, I didn't mean it!"
Chaewon snorted, "You sounded pretty convincing when you implied your father could get my mother, a mere admin fired and me expelled though."
"Shut up, you brat," Jisung hissed.
"Brat? Jisung, this is not how I brought you up! We need to have a talk later," James scolded, then turned to Chaewon, "I'm so so sorry my son did that to your friend, and insulted your mother. Her department has been a great deal of help to us recently, especially with the new magical weapon fiasco."
It seemed Jisung finally realised that Chaewon's mother wasn't just an admin, and the look of shock on his face made Chaewon almost as happy as jinxing him did.
Professor McGonagall cleared her throat, which gained all of their attention.
"While Mr Lee was in the wrong for doing what he did, Miss Kim is still at fault for putting him under a jinx, James," she reminded, "And as such I now declare your punishments. As mentioned before, no quidditch participation for the rest of the school year for Mr Lee, and for Miss Kim... three months of detention."
Honestly, Chaewon expected to get suspended or much longer detention, so she was more than happy with the result and a small smile started growing.
It didn't go unnoticed by McGonagall though (much like everything else).
"However, if this should happen again, Miss Kim, there will be suspension, regardless of what reason you had."
Her smile dropped slightly
She left the office first, leaving the others in the room.
She was met with a worried Minju and an apathetic looking Eunbi when she came out of the stairwell.
Chaewon was so happy at how her official punishment wasn't horrible that she completely forgot about how her law-abiding sister would take it.
But before she could say anything, Minju walked up to her.
"You shouldn't have done that," Minju scolded Chaewon, but the look of joy in her eyes said otherwise, "You're older than me but you're so stupid, you ended up getting into trouble," she thrusted forward and hugged Chaewon to hide her tears, "Stupid. Stupid. Stupid."
"Is what you say, but you're crying because you're touched, aren't you?" Chaewon teased and closed her eyes, hugging Minju back.
Chaewon pulled away after a while and told the both of them, "You know what's great? They're suspending Jisung's quidditch activities," she laughed, "Also his father was evidently very, very disappointed with him, so that's a major plus point."
(Honestly, she still felt a bit of unrest at the lack of expression on her sister's face, but she also knew Eunbi would never scold her in front of Minju)
"Yeah, that makes both parents involved," Eunbi said.
Chaewon then realised that if the school called Jisung's father, they definitely also called her mother.
"I'm in trouble, aren't I?"
"Unless you tell mom a bloody good reason, yeah. You're so in trouble," Eunbi looked serious, and while almost nothing scared Chaewon, the wrath of both her mother and her sister both did, and Chaewon was prepared to apologise profusely to her sister.
But Eunbi just laughed, "Though I must say," Eunbi punched Chaewon's shoulder playfully, "Well done, lil sis. He deserved that."
Though still a tad shocked, Chaewon smiled and teased, "I can't believe famous law-abiding prefect Kwon Eunbi herself is endorsing me jinxing a senior."
"Law-abiding prefect Kwon Eunbi might, but let's see if hit wizard with a catch rate of 100% will," Eunbi teased back.
Yep, Chaewon was still screwed.