(Force Of) Habit
by Soulstarsinger

Not doing magic is harder this summer. Somehow, along the way this last year at school, it's become automatic to reach for his wand in any situation. Which he knows is daft on many levels - it's not like he's been doing magic at every turn, really. He's hardly a Molly Weasley in the kitchen, for example.

But when Aunt Petunia asks him to help with some household or garden chore - and she is asking, this summer, not ordering, and only nodding when he says he'll just finish this or that piece of summer homework first - he thanks Moody and Lupin for that every day; when she asks him to do something, his first thought is to use magic. In fact, not even that - it's his instinct, before thought even kicks in. Though he has to wonder if the idea of scaring the Dursleys silly isn't factoring into the equation somewhere?

He thinks it was maybe the DA that did it, doing all that extra magic away from adult supervision. Although, that hadn't exactly been every day, either.

He wonders if any of the other DA members are feeling the same, but he's kind of reluctant to owl Ron or Hermione about it. Because, what if it isn't cos of the DA? What if it's.... something else? Last thing he needs is one more thing to make him different. But he's probably just being paranoid, right? It's probably nothing. Normal. Most probably.

And yet, where last summer his wand was a reassuring awkwardness in his jeans pocket, this year there's what he can only describe as an itch. A definite temptation. He's not sure he's entirely comfortable with that, and if it wasn't for the ever-present threat hanging over him, he thinks he might even leave his wand in his trunk. Maybe. Some of the time.

He considers not carrying it while he's inside the house - he's supposed to be safe there, right? But then it occurs to him that that might get him too used to being without it. What if he forgets, and wanders outside, wandless? No, it's probably best to keep it with him all the time. You know. Just in case.

What he doesn't know, though, is whether he really means just in case he needs it. Or, is it just in case something happens that gives him the chance to do magic? He tries not to worry about that, and concentrate his thoughts elsewhere.

He wishes he were seventeen.


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