Chapter 3 : Uncovered
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A/N- a very big thank you to the beautiful people that reviewed, you are very loved. As for the rest of you ... well i guess i love you too for reading but i'd love you ever MORE if you reviewed! ;)
“Oi, we should probably get changed into our robes now,” James suggested after Remus informed us that we were about an hour away.
Sirius and Peter glanced out the window, as though wondering if they should trust Remus and James’s assessment. They seemed satisfied with what they saw as they turned back to face us.
“Yeah we should,” agreed Sirius. “Shame, I thought I looked pretty hot in this shirt,” he sighed.
James grinned. “It looks better on me, mate.”
Sirius scoffed his denial while I rolled my eyes to myself and exchanged looks with Remus. It seemed that these boys were a little too high in arrogance levels.
Grabbing their things, they began to head out the door when they noticed me, sitting there frozen and paused.
“Kate, aren’t you going to go get your things?” Remus asked with a frown.
I have no bloody things! I was going into panic mode.
“Oh, uh ... um, well …“
I was not making much progress in answering. Actually, spluttering would probably be the more appropriate term.
Sirius raised his eyebrows. “Your stuff, Kate? Who’d you leave it with?”
More important was where I’d left it. A whole other world was where I’d left it.
I couldn’t seem to find words – I had never been good at making things up on the spot no matter how many times I had needed to.
Like the time Tracey Barns asked me how many times I had been kissed. I’d begun my lie with, ‘Um, sorry can’t talk - I have to go to a meeting.’ And I’d ended it with, “… on the toilet.”
That had been embarrassing.
I’m just really not a good on the spot thinker and I’ve lost count of the number of times it has resulted in my public humiliation. Kind of like now.
I was sitting there frozen, with no signs of ever using speech again.
The boys sighed simultaneously and came and sat back down. The curiosity on their faces was much more prominent than the resignation as they looked at me with expectant eyes.
“Where are your things, Kate?” James asked.
I looked down at the dusty floor, something I hadn’t actually felt the need to do much since I’d met the Marauders. It was something about their carefree attitude that made me feel more open. Everyone I had ever met had been so uptight about what other people said. The Marauders were less judgmental and I found myself not as worried about what they would think.
I kept my eyes trained on the red carpet with layer upon layer of dust embedded into it as I answered James.
“I don’t have any stuff,” I mumbled.
I could feel the frown in his voice as Sirius asked, “why not?”
My breath was coming quicker as I panicked. I mentally asked the questions I needed to know the answers too. Should I tell them? Should I explain that I really have no magical ability and am not registered to go to this amazing school that they spoke of?
Would they reject me for it? Would they report me or something? Could I go to jail for this?
I sighed to myself, trying to fight the panic.
Honestly, I didn’t really have any other options. They were going to find out sooner or later and if I didn’t tell them myself, they might be annoyed and just the thought of that made me feel terrible.
Funny how attached I’d gotten to them over only a few hours.
Drawing on some inner strength I was lucky enough to find, I attempted to control my breathing and looked up at them. They all wore similar expressions of curiosity.
“Because I’m not magical,” I finally admitted.
“What? But – “
“I’ll explain, Sirius. Just … look I’ll tell you guys the story.”
Where to start? Well I suppose the beginning was as good a place as any. We did have an hour. So I told them about The Wall People (they laughed at that). I told them how I’d attempted and failed to copy them (they laughed then too). I told them how after I talked to Sirius, I tried it again and I came through. I tried to explain to them how utterly amazing it was – all of it. And then I came back to meeting them and I finished.
It was surprisingly easy to keep talking once I had started. Normally, I find it a little hard to talk in front of more than one person, especially with people I don’t know all that well. Something about having all the attention on me - it makes it worse if you screw up.
There was silence all around me and I chanced a glance up at all of them. Each of their faces held different emotions. They were all reacting differently to my story.
James’s face held a combination of awe and admiration. Peter’s held shock and astonishment. Remus’s was full of compassion and a touch of confusion, as though something in my story didn’t make sense. Finally, Sirius’s face was unreadable. I thought I saw bitterness on there at one point but when I looked again it was gone, tucked away carefully.
“Wow, you have some serious balls,” James said finally. It was clearly meant to be a compliment.
The tension in the room broke as Sirius let out a laugh. I noticed it was a little more forced than his usual bark. “No, I have some Sirius balls,” he grinned.
Remus rolled his eyes. “You know. I would have thought that you would get sick of people using your name as a joke. You seem to enjoy it,” he told Sirius in disapproval, shaking his head and muttering something that sounded vaguely like, “… anything for attention.”
“Um guys,” squeaked Peter, “we should probably get back to Kate’s … uh news.”
All the heads snapped back to me and I felt myself blush under their gaze.
Remus opened his mouth to say something and shut it again. I looked questioningly at him but he didn’t react. He just continued frowning at me, as though he was trying to work something out. I hoped he didn’t have a grudge against non-magic people. I hoped none of them did.
“So … what are you going to do?” asked James, ruffling his black hair. He was very inquisitive, that James.
“Honestly? I have no idea,” I sighed quietly, looking at the floor. “I just wanted to do something impulsive and fun! I didn’t want to deal with what would end up happening.”
I decided not to mention my desire to get away and escape everything. They didn’t need to know quite that much.
James seemed to understand my explanation quite well. A grin lit up his face.
“Something impulsive and fun, eh? That’d be something new for us!” he smirked with sarcasm.
At James’s words, Sirius seemed to pick up a little and a wondrous expression came over his face.
“You’re right, Prongs,” he murmured.
“Honestly, Padfoot, I’m always right. You should be used to it by now – “
“No, I have an idea, git. Shut up!”
James gave him a glare that contained no anger at all and closed his mouth. He folded his arms crossly.
Sirius looked around the group. His eyes rested on me the longest and his grin stretched further.
“We should smuggle you into Hogwarts!” he exclaimed.
He looked around at the compartments occupants, waiting for their reactions.
There was about a three second moment of silence before James cried, “That’s bloody brilliant!”
Remus smiled and nodded his head slowly, thinking to himself. “It could work. We’ll have to be smart about it though,” he murmured.
Sirius made a noise in his throat and I could almost hear what he was thinking - being smart isn’t too hard for us, Moony.
I smiled to myself.
Peter looked at Sirius with admirable awe and nodded his head vigorously in agreement and finally, all heads turned to me again.
“Do you want to come to Hogwarts, Kate?” Sirius asked.
My heart started beating fast again. Did I want to go to Hogwarts?
Yes, I decided. I’d made that decision the moment I had hopped on this train. I wanted magic. Wanted it bad.
I nodded slowly, allowing a small smile.
James clapped his hands together. “Okay, so let’s start planning!” he declared enthusiastically. It was a tone that suggested he had done this far too many times. “Where should she stay?”
Sirius, Peter and Remus pondered the question. Sirius looked at me as he replied, “I don’t think she should stay by herself.”
Remus nodded his agreement. “Right, so … Gryffindor boys’ dorms?”
Peter let out a small gasp of surprise and looked around the compartment a little wildly. “But people will wonder why a girl’s sleeping in our dorm!”
“That’s what the cloak’s for, prat,” James pointed out with a roll of his eyes.
“Cloak?” I interrupted. I was amazed at how well they were taking this! Already they were planning for me to stay instead of banishing me from their midst as I had predicted them to. I was so lucky to have met them. It was a bit much to believe, a little too good to be true.
“Wait a minute, guys. Just … I …. How can you be taking this so well? I just told you I didn’t have any magical powers and you don’t seem to care at all!”
The boys smiled again.
“We’ve had some …er experience with secrets, eh Moon?” Sirius smirked, looking over at Remus whose smile was wiped clean off his face as he paled considerably. He gave Sirius a death glare while I looked on in confusion.
Sirius just snickered before turning back to face me.
“The cloak is … well its pretty much the reason we don’t get caught doing all our pranks,” he admitted. They did pranks? I suppose I should have seen it coming. “It’s James’s,“ he continued, “and it makes you invisible if you put it on.”
“Show Kate,” Remus commanded to James.
Grinning, James dived into his bag and pulled out a transparent cloak that I could only see by the faint silvery-ness of it being squished together. My eyes were wide as I reached for it, wanting to examine every inch of the amazing substance. James became suddenly stern as he pulled it out of reach.
“Hold on there, Kate. Do you promise not to tell anyone about this cloak?”
Tearing my eyes away from the cloak I looked at James who was watching my every move fiercely.
“I promise, Mr CIA,” I teased him, rolling my eyes.
Everyone in the compartment looked at me in confusion.
“I’m James, Kate – “ James begun, looking at me as though I had sprouted three arms but he stopped when Remus burst into laughter.
Remus looked at me, still laughing and put his hand up for a high five. I slapped his hand, pretending it wasn’t the first time anyone had offered me a high five before.
“At least someone gets my jokes,” I muttered, smiling at him.
Remus stopped laughing after a few more seconds.
“They just don’t understand because they’re pureblood, Kate,” he explained, though this only confused me further. He recognized my flash of confusion. “Oh crap, that’s right you wouldn’t know anything about that would you? Right, well I’ll explain it a bit. A muggle is what you are - it’s someone without magical powers or anything like that. A pureblood is someone who has parents that are magical and a muggle-born is someone magical whose parents are both muggles. A half blood is either where one parent is magical and the other isn’t or when one parent is muggle-born.”
He looked at me with some sympathy, as though understanding what I was going through a little. “Does that make any sense or have I just confused you more?” he asked, smiling good-naturedly.
I shook my head slowly. “No, I think I get it. I think. So all you guys –“ I indicated everyone except Remus, “- you’re all pureblood or something?” I said unsurely.
Remus nodded. “And I'm a halfblood,” he told me, “I also read muggle books sometimes … so I know what the CIA is,” he finished with a chuckle.
I laughed back a little. “Are there many muggle-born students at … what’s it called again?” I asked, looking at the compartment at large again. I had a bit of a too-much-information overload.
“Hogwarts,” Sirius answered, grinning. “And there’s pretty much a similar amount of everybody: purebloods, half bloods and muggle-borns but uh … not many muggles.”
“Okay,” I replied, nodding slowly in wonder and causing Sirius to laugh. “And does it make any difference if you’re halfblood or pureblood or whatever?” I asked.
Sirius’s face turned dark and bitter so fast it was as though I had flipped a switch.
“No, it makes no difference,” Remus answered quickly.
There was some tension at the room that I seemed to have caused when I asked that question and no one spoke for a few moments. I wondered what Sirius had heard in my words.
Finally, James seemed to explode.
“Will somebody please tell me who the CIA is?” he demanded impatiently.
Remus and I laughed.
I'd like to apologise if i got any of the marauders' blood status's wrong, i wasn't entirely sure of peters or remus's so i kind of guessed them haha. Any thoughts are welcome - you can tell me what you had for dinner if you feel like it in a wonderful thing called a review :) oh and im sorry that this chapter was rather short with not alot happening but it didn't work to put the next chapter in with this one, hope it wasn't too bad!
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