The Lies You Tell Yourself by Shanastay
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Shana: *screaming again*

Snape: Why do you insist on making such an infernal racket?

Shana: Actually, I was kinda hoping you\'d bite me again.

Snape: Really.

Shana: Or you could kiss me. I think that would have better results than biting or prodding. *smiles innocently*

Snape: Hmmm…

Shana: Oh, come ON, you ruddy bastard! You know it\'s been a while since you got to snog a willing woman.

Snape: Hmmm…

Shana: Okay, fine. Do it the hard way. *opens mouth to start screaming again*

Snape: *shuts her up*

Kim: *walks in on Snape snogging Shana* Goddamnit! She has ALL the luck! Shanastay claims ownership of Miss Callaway. All others belong to Rowling. She makes no compensation from this. Unless you count *that*! *points at lip-locked pair*

Chapter 6: Open Mouth, Insert Foot Here

Dead silence greeted the UD professor\'s bald declaration. The three youths before her sat slack-jawed, blinking up at her initially smiling, and now grimacing countenance.

\"That\'s not quite how I envisioned that coming out,\" she declared, throwing up her hands in defeat. \"Well, fuck!\"

The trio before her seemed surprised and somewhat shocked at the sudden, unexpected profanity. Apparently they weren\'t used to \"adults\" cursing around them. I\'m gonna hafta start watching my language, especially come fall. Fuckin-A!

Jamming her Ray-Bans back on her head, Shaluinn spread her now empty hands in entreaty. \"Look, Dumbledore dragged me here all the way from the Pacific Northwest of the USA to help you. If you like, you can ask him, well, his portrait anyway, yourselves.\"

Dubious looks met her latest outburst.

\"Crap. How \'bout I leave you alone to decide for yourselves, and you let me know, eh?\" She pointed toward the other end of the yard. \"I\'ll be over there whenever you\'re ready, or whatever.\" The visibly agitated American stalked away, muttering to herself, \"Brilliant. Just fucking brilliant. Way to go, Shaluinn. That was a great way to gain their confidence…\"

As soon as she made it to the other end of the yard, the woman looked back to see the youths conversing, at least one of them throwing a glance her way at any given time. Letting out a pent-up breath, she shook her head at herself. Diplomacy never was your strong suit.

What to do while I wait? Might as well get some form practice in. Shaluinn proceeded to fish around in her pockets before coming up with the items she needed. Marking off a spot ten paces away and parallel to the trio, she placed one of the items in the grass and stepped back.

Shifting everything over to her left hand, she flexed her right wrist, catching her wand as it dropped out of her sleeve. Concentrating carefully, she practiced the necessary wand movements several times as she recalled the appropriate incantation. Satisfied she was doing it right, Shaluinn focused her mind and performed the spell that would return the piece of shrunken equipment to its original size.

The witch couldn\'t repress the small smirk that graced her lips as a full-size archery target round, resting on its stand, grew up out of the grass. From the corner of her eye, she saw she had a rapt audience. Stepping back the ten paces she\'d mentally marked off, she placed the rest of the items from her left hand in the grass.

Flexing her right wrist and then left, alternately, she switched wands, now performing the enlarging spell with her left hand. A full-size black compound bow with red cams and a hip-quiver filled with red-fletched arrows, that matched the fire-engine shade of the owner\'s hair, rose out of the grass. If there had been any doubt about having the attention of the group on the other end of the yard, it was wiped away as the trio now stared openly.

Positive she would have a little while before they came to a definitive decision Shaluinn returned her wand to her sleeve before shrugging out of her ankle-length, black leather coat and casting it to the side. The doffing of her coat revealed the skin-hugging nature of the attire beneath. The matte black color of the stretchy black top and curve-gripping leather pants went a long way toward hiding the details of her figure, but nothing could disguise its hourglass shape.

The reluctant witch reached up to drop the Ray-Bans back over her eyes before bending to first retrieve the black quiver, with a small red, white and blue banner attached to it, and fasten it about her hips. The red-fletched arrows sat in the forward-facing sleeve, resting against her right side. She removed a black canvas visor with an American flag emblazoned across the brim from the belt, situating it on her head with her bangs settled over the top.

Only then did she pick up the bow, removing and tucking the oversized clothes-pin-looking stand into the back of her belt, and wrapping the red and black braided retaining strap around her left wrist. Eyes on the blank bale before her, she retrieved her release aid from a zippered pocket on the side of the quiver by touch alone. Slipping her right hand through the loop attached to the release, she pulled an arrow and nocked it between the points of the D-loop, the body of the arrow set against the rest. With a flip of her wrist, her release was in hand, the back end of the D-loop caught in its hook.

Taking a stance perpendicular to the target, left side out, focusing totally on form and not worrying about aiming, Shaluinn brought the bow up. Left arm and elbow locked-out, she pulled the string back in one smooth motion, right hand twisting at the end of the draw, so the backs of her knuckles rested against the side of her jaw. With a minute flex of her right shoulder and press of the thumb-button on the release, she let the string and arrow go, left hand relaxing its grip, as the bow dropped forward several degrees in a smooth follow-through.

Without conscious thought, the American dropped her hand to retrieve arrow after arrow, repeating the shot, feeling her way through it. The woman had been shooting for so many long years that the motions no longer required conscious effort on her part. Even aiming, unless it was a live and moving target, took only a minimum of thought. That was why this had become her favorite, and preferred method of relaxation, even as it won her a gold medal at the World Championships, years prior.

The witch hadn\'t been sure what to think of the reaction she garnered from the then Headmaster Dumbledore after he had spent an hour watching her shoot. He told her that the entire time, the only thoughts he could read off her were, \"Nock. Clip. Pull. Snap,\" or some variant of those. He claimed he\'d never encountered a more effective block against Legilimency, not even in those individuals highly skilled in Occlumency.

He even tested his theory further, having her merely sit and think about shooting archery, with the same, supposedly, impressive results. Even with various distractions, her focus was so total that the shell she had created around her mind never broke. Shaluinn knew that, to a certain extent, she lost awareness of the outside world, and frankly, she wasn\'t sure that was a good thing.

But right here and now, in the Weasleys\' backyard, Shaluinn allowed that totality of focus to fall around her until the entirety of the world consisted of her, her bow and arrows, and the blank bale. It wasn\'t until she\'d emptied her quiver of target arrows that she registered the fact that someone was calling her name, and probably had been for some time.

The UD professor turned to her right to see that Molly and Minerva had joined the three youths, and it was the Headmistress who had been calling her. Deciding to have a spot of fun at the lot\'s expense, Shaluinn retrieved a broadhead arrow from the quiver and nocked it. Looking past the group, she zoomed in on her intended target, reaching over to adjust her sight with a twist of a knob. She snapped the release onto the D-loop and drew, aiming (or so it looked) right at the openly staring group, tracking her quarry for a half-second before popping the release.

Molly Weasley didn\'t even have time to gasp, as the broadhead arrow neatly skewered one of her forever annoying garden gnomes, dropping it to the ground.

Minerva, on the other hand, looked rather irritated at her newest employee\'s blatantly inflammatory antics.

Harry, Ron and Hermione were once again staring at her open-mouthed, though with Molly present that didn\'t last long, and they quickly schooled their features.

Shaluinn pulled the bow stand from the back of her belt and clipped it to the bottom limb of her bow before settling the weapon on the ground. She then strode to stand before McGonagall, quiver slapping against her thigh as she walked. The woman brought her hands up before her chest, palms together, and waited.

Staunchly refusing to appear surprised, or unnerved, by the strange woman before her, Minerva McGonagall mustered up every bit of dignity she had as she spoke. \"I\'m returning to Hogwarts now. When you are through here, Floo back to my office and apprise me of your status. I will also have some \'homework\' waiting for you.\" Her eyes twinkled, and the corners of her mouth turned up at that last. \"Now, do behave yourself.\"

She then turned her attention to the three sitting at the picnic table. \"Harry, Ron, Hermione, do take care of yourselves.\" She turned. \"Molly, always lovely to see you.\" With that, the Headmistress turned on her heel and marched back toward the house.

Shaluinn turned her attention to a slowly simmering Molly.

\"Please, put those things away. I don\'t need dangerous things like that lying around.\"

\"But Mom…\" a male voice whined off to Shaluinn\'s right.

The much taller redhead decided to break in, \"Of course, Madam,\" and made a small bow before maneuvering past to collect the broadhead arrow.

On her way back, Shaluinn paused as she passed Molly, reading a question written on the other woman\'s face.

\"How old are you, dear?\"

The American smiled, \"Thirty-eight,\" she turned her gaze to the three at the table and winked, \"though I\'m regularly accused of being much younger.\"

That set off a series of whispers and elbows nudged into ribs, as the tall redhead carefully retrieved and shrank her equipment while Molly returned to the house and preparing dinner. As Callaway replaced the last item in her pockets, she caught sight of Harry approaching, a determined look fixed on his face.

\"Accio wands!\"

Shaluinn\'s head snapped up and around at the sharply verbalized command, her eyes narrowing at the young man, now standing several feet away from her, wand drawn. She left her coat on the ground and rose to her feet, her heeled boots giving her an inch or so over the young man with the lightning scar.

Confusion and disbelief warred on Harry\'s face, as Ron and Hermione simultaneously cried, \"Accio wands!\" from behind him.

Again, nothing happened.

The American witch paled as she realized what was probably coming next, dismayed that she\'d fucked things up bad enough for the three youths to come at her like this.

\"Expelliarmus!\" all three cried together. Three dazzling flashes of light flew at the UD professor, the American diving and rolling on the ground, just narrowly missed by the spells.

Rolling to her knees, she raised both hands and snapped her wrists, wands dropping. \"Accio wands!\" The trio\'s wands flew out of their hands and into hers. She swiftly tucked the wooden shafts into the back of her waistband. The woman concentrated, lifted both wands and waved them silently in the air, Hermione and Harry both locking up and falling over in Full Body Bind Curses, followed by Ron.

Callaway walked to stand over Harry so she could meet his very torqued gaze. \"Might as well calm yourself, Mr. Potter. You chose to approach me in such a manner, so you only have yourself to blame.\" She let him search her gaze, to see for himself that she was totally calm, and deadly serious.

So all three could hear her, she continued, \"Lesson the First: I am not your enemy, nor should you make one of me. I picked up a great deal during the decade I lived in Japan, which, by the way, is where my wands are from. Lesson the Second: You have got to shut your mouths when spell-casting in combat. The split-second advantage it gives you literally means the difference between life and death. I can\'t teach you that. It will come only with concentration and practice.\"

The American moved away from Harry and over toward Hermione, bending her wrists to re-seat her wands out of the way. As she neared the younger witch, she waved her hands, ending the incantation and purposely turning her back on the most dangerous side of the triangle. Callaway was impressed that the brunette did not immediately rush her, considering first. The end result was the same, either way.

Predictably, Hermione went for their wands. Anticipating this, the American spun to the right as she sidestepped, using the centrifugal force, plus the younger witch\'s forward momentum, against her. Callaway caught Hermione\'s right wrist in her right hand, her left hand coming up to push against the brunette\'s right shoulder, taking her to the ground, arm twisted and bent up at an awkward angle, the professor\'s left knee in the small of Hermione\'s back.

Ron tried to swoop in to the rescue, only to be tripped by Callaway\'s right leg, the American\'s right foot swinging back to pin his prone form painfully, by the neck, partially cutting off his airway. Thankfully, Harry stood back, actually paying attention.

\"Lesson the Third: And this is the most important one. You may at some point find yourself wandless that does NOT mean you are defenseless!\" With that, she released her two captives. Standing swiftly, she offered a hand up each to Ron and Hermione.

Ron eyed it for a second before waving it off.

Hermione had her left knee up and reached for the proffered hand with her left across her body. Recognizing what was about to happen, Callaway resisted only enough to make it \"real\" and let the younger witch pull her left arm across her body as she stood, left hand pinned to the brunette\'s left hip, Hermione\'s right hand sliding around and over the American\'s upper arm until the blade of the younger witch\'s hand pressed in painfully, forcing Callaway to bend at the waist.

Already knowing what came next, the American was able to cushion her descent, as Hermione then took a step to the left and pivoted with her hips, falling to her right knee, dropping the professor to the ground in a textbook, balance-disruption and take-down technique.

Callaway twisted her head to look up at the brunette as she felt the wands tucked in her waistband being removed. \"Excellent, Miss Granger! This is exactly what I\'m talking about!\" She then easily twisted out of Hermione\'s grip, rolling back to her feet. \"You perceived weak positioning and sought to use it to your advantage. Flawless arm-bar take-down by the way. Of the three of you, I had hoped you had received some self-defense training. This will make my job that much easier.\"

Harry was the one who blurted out what was evidently on all three youths\' minds.

\"Who the ruddy hell are you?\"


A/N: A HUGE thank you to everyone who has reviewed! I adore feedback and the more encouragement I get, the more I tend to write. I already have a total of 11 chapters written! Please, continue to feed the authoress!

A compound bow is a modern bow that has pulleys or cams at the end of each limb through which the bow string passes. As the bow is pulled back (drawn) the pulleys or cams turn which, in turn, reduce the amount of force needed to completely draw the bow. The archer usually uses a release aid to hold the string steadily and release it precisely. This attaches to the bowstring at a point and permits the archer to release the string with a pull of a trigger. With less force required to hold a compound bow at draw, the muscles take longer to fatigue, thus giving a compound archer more time to aim.

An arrow consists of a long and thin shaft made from aluminum or carbon fiber composite. It is pointed or armed with an arrowhead at one end and with a nock or notch in the other. Arrowheads (specifically multi-blade broadheads) fit hunting and military purpose better than a mere point, which is mostly useful for target-shooting. Near the notch end are vanes, which keep the arrow pointed in the direction of travel by strongly damping down any tendency to pitch or yaw. There are often three vanes, but many fletchings have four or even more. They are now often made of plastic bound to the arrow\'s shaft.
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