She was answered by a loud clap of thunder, one that made 15-year-old Aberforth jump. In the corner, however, Albus, 12, did not gasp until moments later, and that seemed to be in reaction to the book he was reading.
“Still reading that Muggle novel?” Alice asked disdainfully. “Frank-in-stern?”
“Frankenstein. And do be quiet!”
“The storm won’t be.”
“Bugger the storm.” And Albus promptly pulled the book up very close to his nose in an indication that his attention would not be pulled away from it.
But shortly after that he suddenly laughed and shook his head. “Oh, honestly! Is this man an imbecile?”
“Is what man?” asked Aberforth, confused.
“Frankenstein! He doesn't realise the monster intends to kill Elizabeth? How obvious can a thing be?!”
“Is that papa?” Alice was still peering out the window, and had just seen a carriage struggling up towards the manor. “I’m going to mama!” She hurried out of the room.
Aberforth actually wasn’t very good with his letters. But he found watching his brother read much more intriguing than most reading material, especially Albus’ reading material, which more often than not was extremely difficult to understand even by those who had their letters much better than Aberforth. Albus was used to his brother watching and often didn’t seem to notice him anyway.
So when Albus’ eyes kept moving up from his book to his brother with a glint that tempted Aberforth’s heels to move themselves about five feet up into the air, he started wondering if the book was poorly written. He eventually decided though that was unlikely. A single flaw such as the one Albus had recently ranted about was enough to throw him off his reading in this manner.
The problem was what happened when his he was thrown off his reading.
He should have followed Alice out before Albus finally put the book down, and said, “Listen to that thunder. The storm must be almost on top of us.”
“You don’t think it will flood, do you?”
“No. Not flood.” He took the book, slid it on top of the desk, open face-down to his page, making sure not to wrinkle any of the pages. “Did you know what you can do with lightening?”
Aberforth wasn’t sure he wanted to know, but Albus always had the command of him, being so much smarter. “I do not know.”
“Bring minds to life. Come. Let us see what we may do with a wand. We’ll stay inside, of course.”
“And if no lightening strikes the manor?” Aberforth pointed out.
Instead of answering his question, Albus strode up the Aberforth, spun him around, and shoved him against the window. His eyes pressed against the glass, the lightening that streaked in front of it felt as if it was going straight for his head!
Then the touch of his brother’s wand at the back of his neck, violent shivers invading his back, flying to his hips and shaking them, against his brother’s, because Albus had suddenly pressed himself into Aberforth’s back, and his brother chanted:
Thunder black and lightening white,
Bring this dead mind into life!
“Wait a minute, that doesn’t exactly rhyme,” he interrupted himself, pulling back. It was at this point that Aberforth realized something very disturbing was happening down in his smallclothes.
He’s crazy! Aberforth thought desperately to himself. He may have come home from Hogwarts last month with twice as much knowledge as any other first year, but that only makes him more crazy! And he’s making me crazy!
“Perhaps it worked anyway.” Aberforth was grabbed and spun back around, titled back so his robes fell back against him, and did not hide what was happening to him. “Oh!” Albus saw and jumped back. “I’m terribly sorry. I should have realized, that hasn’t happened to me yet...do you need to be alone?”
Dumbly Aberforth nodded.
“I’ll be with Alice and mama. Papa’s probably drying by now. Join us when you can?” And he raced out without waiting for an answer. If he hadn’t banged him shin on a table leg, and hopped around and out while clutching onto it, he would have been gone before Aberforth saw that he was lying about *that* having never happened to him, because even if it hadn’t before, it had now.
He could only pray Albus never mentioned it again. He knew he wouldn’t.