Where: Stairwell, after the feast
What: Some light harrassment gone terribly, terribly wrong.
The feast had ended, all the ickle Firsties and younger years had been shown to the dormitories and given the password, and Pansy wanted nothing more than to take a long bath and go to sleep. However, there were always the little adventurers who felt like exploring on their first night (or first night back) at Hogwarts, and Pansy's duties as Prefect included helping the little idiots back to their dorms. She hovered from stairwell to stairwell, begrudginglly helping a little one here and there (ignoring Gryffindors altogether), and as it grew later, she found a large windowsill to tuck herself into, next to the stairs leading closest to the Slytherin dormitory. Anyone who happened across her path, regardless of age or inexperience, would certainly not get a happy helping hand from Pansy. However, she wasn't going to sit quietly and let them go by, either.
Holden remained in the Great Hall for as long as humanly possible, having starved himself that morning in preparation for the feast he anxiously awaited at the start of each year. He was feeling drowsy as he filed out after the Hufflepuffs, the last group to leave. He knew when he made it back to his dormatory his friends would be awake, teasing him mercilessly about how he'd never fit his robes this year if he kept eating so much. He grinned to himself - he couldn't remember gaining a kilo since he was twelve. He parted from the rest of the group as they reached their dorms, heading down the stairwell that would give him the quickest route to Ravenclaw Tower. One of the ghosts was still lingering by a windowsil, but he dare not even turn to it, not wanting to be held up any longer.
Pansy let one leg drop quietly to the floor, one hand resting idly atop her other knee. She turned and grinned slightly at the boy hurrying past, but couldn't get a very good look at him in the dark. He certainly wasn't a first year, which wasn't quite as fun as terrifying the little things, but she could make do. She sat a bit straighter against the sill, and cooed softly, "Someone's out late. Certainly not a good way to start out the year, hmm?"
Holden had made it halfway up the stairwell when he heard the voice, and stumbled on the step in front of him as he was startled. "Shite." He muttered, cathcing his breath. "You almo-" He froze as he turned to view the source of the voice - a girl he recognized as one in his own year. He quickly realized what had made him think she was a ghost ... the light of the moon behind her had illuminated her features, casting a glowing effect on her dark hair. A smirk was fixed on her face; one he couldn't grasp the meaning for - unable to collect his thoughts. He soon noticed he'd been staring for quite a while and looked down, making as if he'd dropped something. "I'm sorry." He said hurriedly to the ground.
Pansy's grin widened, teeth glinting in the pale light. "Almost what? Killed you? That would be a shame, wouldn't it?" She lowered her other leg and slipped down the window ledge onto the floor, dusting her robes casually and making sure she knew which pocket held her wand. Her eyes narrowed slightly at Holden, trying to place his face while apparently tried to make very good friends with the floor. He seemed awfully flighty, which might be fun afterall. "What are you, Hufflepuff? I'm sure Filch could escort you to your common room, if you're lost," she continued, softly, waiting and watching carefully for Holden's reactive expression.
Holden swallowed hard and looked back up at her. She was now coming closer and he was positive he'd seen her before, perhaps even knew her name at any given time - but now he was blank. He almost forced a laugh at her joke, but it became clear that she might have been more serious than he thought as he caught sight of a shining badge and green and silver trimmings on her robes. 'Just perfect' he thought. This couldn't be headed anywhere good, and confrontation was certainly not his forte. "Ravenclaw." He stuttered, rushing through his words. "I'm really fine, I know where I'm going. I just -" He couldn't help but notice that she still looked as if a spotlight was following her. "...got a late start.
Pansy's eyebrows raised in amusement as Holden stumbled through his defense, looking at him almost predatorily. "A late start? To the Start-of-term feast? Now there's one I haven't heard, Mr..." she trailed off, gesturing with her hands to prompt a name out of the boy. "Really, it's no trouble at all to have Mr. Filch escort you. All I've got to do is call Mrs. Norris, and she'd be happy to help you find him." She placed a patronizing hand on Holden's shoulder before taking a step towards the curve of the empty hall as if to call the cat.
"Chambers. " He mumbled to finish her thought. "I left last." He found that if he tried to look back towards the windowsil she had come from, instead of meeting her eyes, it was likely he wouldn't begin hyperventilating just yet. As she touched his shoulder, however, he felt a blush creep from that exact spot to his scalp, where he could've sworn his hair was standing on end. "D-don't be rediculous." He tried to move a few steps away. "We should both be off, eh? It's late." He made as if to look at his watch, which obviously currently sat on his bedside table back in Manchester. He sighed heavily, his arm dropping to his side, as he looked back up at Pansy with a pathetic frown.
"Chambers..." Pansy repeated, biting her lip slightly in thought. "Oh yes, I remember you. You broke something last year... didn't you? Of course, that could have been Longbottom, always breaking things. But I remember you from somewhere..." she laughed sort of breathily, meanly, then shifted her weight to one hip and nibbled absently on a thumbnail. "But I suppose that if I never see you roaming the halls at night again, you can run off to your dorm and double check your summer homework." She smirked, eyeing Holden up and down. He did look rather pathetic, looking at her like that. She didn't particularly care for it.
Holden racked his brain for what he might have broken that was significant last year, but it would be easier to think of what he hadn't broken. Still, he was amazed she recognized the name. She didn't seem the type to want to bother with anything that didn't concern her. He didn't even notice the hardness in her tone, and was amazed at his luck. A Slytherin prefect was just going to let him go. He stood there wearily for a moment as she looked him over, feeling slightly uncomfortable. He took the oppurtunity to look down at her, examining her more closely. She actually was pretty, and would probably be stunning if she were smiling, instead of fixed on a sneer. "What's your name?" He suddenly asked, surprising himself. "I mean ... I really don't recognize you ... sorry." He was trying to save himself now. "I won't tell anybody you let me go or anything..."
Pansy narrowed her eyes, looking slightly affronted that Holden hadn't known exactly who she was. Everyone knew Pansy. At least they were supposed to. "Pansy Parkinson," she answered, cold with pride. She laughed a little again, obviously delighting in Holden's discomfort. "Do you say everything that pops into that funny little head of yours? Really, you might want to work on that." He seemed genuinely amazed that she would just let him run off, apparently not realizing how easily Pansy tired of people. Even though she had already planned on telling Draco and company all about the timid boy before her and having a few laughs at his expense, she pretended to consider his offer for a moment.
Holden was finally able to place a face to her name. Pansy Parkinson was a name that came up more than often, especially with his friends in Gryffindor. He'd just never known who she was, and didn't see yet what was so terrible about her. He laughed softly, mistaking her amusement for genuine friendliness. "...I suppose I do. I can't help it, really..." She may have been toying with him a bit, but the girl had charm, and that was undeniable. "Well, I apologize once again. You must get alot of this..." He said, his eyes boring into her own, forgetting to finish for a moment. "As a prefect, I mean." He chuckled nervously, but seemed to forget how to walk as well.
Pansy's eyes widened, and her eyebrows rose as she realized that Holden might be more than just stupid. More than just naive, even. "Apparently you can't," she murmured, agreeing wholeheartedly, knocked slightly off kilter by the way he was looking at her. She really didn't care for it. "Apology accepted, I guess," she said, after a long moment of thinking. She really didn't know what to say, and wondered for a moment whether or not Holden was as batty as Trelawny. "Just... don't let it happen again, or I will call Mrs. Norris. Understood?" Pansy said coolly, regaining just a bit of her composure.
Holden sensed the tension mounting between the two. He could swear he had a sixth sense for that, but perhaps it was better explained by the fact that just about anything made Holden tense. "Right. No no, you don't need to worry about me. T-thank you." He said gently, beginning to inch away from Pansy slowly, still watching her expression. After a few more seconds, he subdued the awkward silence with a mutter of "Goodnight," and he was finally able to tear his eyes from her and continue up the stairs, his pace quickened quite a bit. He didn't know what had had him dumbstruck back there, but whatever it was he longed to leave it at the landing of the spiraling stairwell.
Pansy stood, blinking into the dark, and shook her head. After a moment of eased silence, she muttered, to no one in particular, "I'm... going to bed. Right. Now." She turned back towards the Slytherin dorms, and after one last puzzled look towards the stairwell, strained every inch of her decorum not to run the entire way.