The theoretical aspects of magic came easily to Lucan, as did memorising the various practical applications of potions. His mother, as she frequently reminded him, was a professional potioneer, and it was through her ingenuity that he kept his lycanthropy a secret at Hogwarts. He studied the subject intently, yet without fail would falter in the actual creation of potions; memorisation of how much each ingredient was needed meant nothing when one lacked a delicate touch.
Indeed, Lucan's 'acceptable' grade in potions came not from a failure to understand its concepts, but a failure to bring what was envisioned in his mind to reality. Time, of course, was the major factor— with hands as large as his brewing potions became an arduous task that required most, if not all, his focus, and he spent many of his classes with his face nearly pressed directly against the ingredients he was cutting to ensure precision.
The problem, he concluded, was borne out of frustration and impatience. Developing the proper cutting technique took both time and effort he was yet unwilling to spend, and so Lucan trudged through his first five years at Hogwarts with a passing grade at the subject.
At least, he glances at a girl not far away in the classroom, he was not the worst of the class. Many times he witnessed Song Jin's potions go awry, each concoction brought with it myriad unexpected effects— some funny, others devastating (though still funny, according to him). At first he found the girl amusing, now he found her equal parts amusing and annoying.
He would always turn to look at her, caramel tresses and bright smiles, and something in his chest would begin to twist and knot uncomfortably. She was always happy, always so positive and energetic and tiresome to deal with. In her presence Lucan would think of nothing but the way she effortlessly lit up a room with her presence, and it certainly didn't help his endeavours to improve at potions.
His hand slipped against parchment, and Lucan cursed in suit. The 'w' in Golpalott's Third Law became crooked, and now he would have to start again. He acknowledged Song's smile goodbye with a curt nod, then returned to his work.
Writing notes for her, that is.
He decided on the day that it was annoying how she struggled. Her mistakes muddled his focus, it was all her fault, and if no one helped her improve she would forever be stuck in his thoughts. Lucan pressed harder against the parchment, as though forcing the nagging feeling into the paper and out of his mind: tips and tricks on making better potions as told by his mother. Lucan lacked the dexterity for the techniques, but Song's delicate hands could probably do them justice.
The room was empty when he packed up. Lucan shoved his books away tiredly, wanting nothing more than to sleep the hazy feeling in his chest away. If nothing else, sweets and a nap fixed most of his problems. He approached the doorway at a languid pace, his feet near dragging against the stone floor. The smell of… cat dander(?) hung suspiciously in the air, becoming pronounced on his exit.
It took a moment for Lucan to register the pain of claws latched onto the skin of his face. He stumbled, attacked by an unfamiliar black cat, and a string of curses followed by unintelligible shouts escaped him. The werewolf struggled against what was stereotypically his greatest enemy, pulling at the angry ball of fur assaulting every inch of exposed skin. With one hand still gripping his 'notes' fighting back became a great struggle, but Lucan refused to let go.
When he finally pulled the cat from himself he had already fallen like a tree, six feet and ten inches of height hitting the stone floor with a dull thud. His back felt the brunt of the force, but at least he no longer felt claws digging into his cheek. Overwhelmed by an animal instinct he quite nearly barked at the offending animal, but stopped himself at a low, guttural growl.
Only then did the rolled up parchment tumble from his grip onto the floor. His freed hand reached to gently brush against his cheek; it stung, and when pulled into view Lucan could see streaks of red wetness on his fingers. Bleeding. He clicked his tongue in annoyance, but a hiss from the cat brought him to attention.
Lucan pulled his foot back, ready to kick the animal if it decided to attack again. Damn cats, he sniffed the air and snarled, with their bad moods and bad smells.
"Who lets their angry cat wander the godsdamned grounds?" He grumbled, struggling to get to his feet. The notes he worked so hard on were all but forgotten on the ground, along with the rest of his belongings.