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Bragging Rights by EllaMennowPea

Format: Novel
Chapters: 29
Word Count: 51,395
Status: COMPLETED

Rating: Mature
Warnings: Strong Language, Scenes of a Sexual Nature, Contains Spoilers

Genres: Drama, Romance, AU
Characters: Lily, James
Pairings: James/Lily, Remus/OC, Sirius/OC, Other Pairing

First Published: 11/17/2008
Last Chapter: 04/03/2010
Last Updated: 11/14/2010

Summary:
Absolutely spectacular banner by LilyEvansPotter15 @ TDA
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It started from a breakup and will end with one. 
They must snag the four boys. 
And the girl who finishes first gets the bragging rights. 
Everything was accounted for. 
Except love.


Chapter 1: Chapter One. Lily.
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“That’s utterly heartless!” I hissed. Elsie and Camilla and I were sitting on the hardwood floor. Elsie kept giggling as if what we were discussing were amusing. Mute was sitting on my bed, flipping through some muggle magazines that I’d brought specifically for her. We were all in our pajamas, on the second day back from winter holidays. Personally, I’d been relieved to spend so much time away from Potter, Black, Lupin, and Pettigrew.

“It’s not heartless.” I waited for Camilla to elaborate, but as always she left me hanging, desperate for her to dissuade me from forming my own conclusion. I took the pillow that Mute was leaning on, and slid it out from under her before tucking it to my chest and resting my chin upon it. She made a dejected grumble, but just grabbed another pillow.

“It’s just sadistic and selfish?” Elsie contributed, but we ignored her.

“It’s just a dare. If you wimps don’t think you can handle it…” Reverse psychology has never been such an enemy to me. Enmity seeped through my skin and radiated towards Cammie for suggesting such a task. But I had to admit, it wouldn’t be too hard. And with the Sage twins teasing us about being prudes, this would be quite the scandal. But I wasn’t coldhearted and I didn’t want to injure Potter’s feelings, despite how nasty he’s been to me.

“I’m in…” Mute mumbled, almost sounding absentminded while turning a page and blowing a bright pink bubble of chewing gum. The brown haired, hazel-eyed girl looked very studious, but in reality she was just as flaky as the magazine in her hand. I rolled my eyes, and looked down at my feet.

“Me too!” Elsie giggled. I wanted to pull her hair or at least throw water in her face to make her see just how much her actions affect other people. So Camilla was going to use peer pressure against me? Well, she has another thing coming if she expects me to go along with this.

“I’m not. And I won’t be.” I got up rather quickly and walked to the side of my four-poster, tucking myself under the warm covers. Mute looked at me expectantly, but I just kicked her and made her fall off my bed and to the floor.



I woke the next morning and grimaced upon rolling out of bed. I heard from my sister once that the expression you make when you wake up defines your mood for the rest of the day. This information comes in handy quite often. I quickly prepared for my day and grabbed my school bag upon exiting. Today would begin classes, and I was eager to claim a good seat. Camilla groaned and threw her alarm clock across the room, hitting the bed post of Mute, who in turn threw her alarm clock, without looking, and hit the bed post of Elsie. This chain reaction was thought up by me in fourth year, and while I’ve since become accustomed to the early breakfast and early arrival to class, the others are thick heads who “need their beauty sleep”.

I rolled my eyes, continuing down the stairs and into the common room, where two people whose names I was unfamiliar with looked up at me and smiled in welcome. I smiled back out of courtesy; however I knew that no one could possibly mistake my smile as a happy one.

Walking briskly out of the common room, I strolled down the grand staircase, every few moments having to pause and wait for one to change. I was making excellent time, I thought as I began to walk down the corridor to the Great Hall. I was sure to be the earliest student, and therefore eat my breakfast in peace while simultaneously avoiding James Potter.

Camilla’s dare rolled back into my mind and I thought of how preposterous it was. I wasn’t going to admit that I hadn’t actually considered it, but the thought of doing that to Potter, and the repercussions afterwards…I couldn’t bare to entertain the idea.

Bullocks…and here I was excited to go to breakfast…

Sitting at the Gryffindor table, all looking keen as mustard, were the four people I most detested to share a meal with, let alone three everyday for almost a full year. Sirius nudged James and in shoulder as I walked in, and the latter of the pair turned his head to gaze at me.

Don’t get me wrong, I found his affection endearing and a bit flattering, but these attributes didn’t make it less annoying. He grinned at me, and I let a small, fake smile spill onto my mouth. He could always tell, and I knew he could, when my smiles were cold. That never deterred him though.

“Good morning,” I began. “Potter, Black, Lupin, Pettigrew. Are you all well?”

They all smiled at me, although I’m not totally sold on the idea that they all like me. After all, I humiliate and reject their best mate, what’s not to love?

“Lily, you look lovely!” James grinned, running his calloused hand through his hair, a gesture which annoyed me. I chose not to comment on this. I smiled, trying hard not to let him affect me. “Have a good holiday?”

“Smashing.”

“Receive any nice presents?”

“Loads.”

“Want to know how my holiday was?”

“Not particularly.”

“It’s was nice. Christmas was brilliant. Got a new broom, it’s the latest model!”

“How nice.”

“Having a good day?”

“Had better.”

“Okay…”

The conversations between us were forced. I had to tolerate him for business purposes—together we were head boy and girl. Other than that, I preferred for there to be limited contact, and no physical contact whatsoever. In November, he accidentally bumped into me while we were walking in the hallway, patrolling, and I flipped my lid. He’s since learned a valuable lesson.

“So…Hogsmeade is next weekend?”

“Your point?”

“We should go!”

“No.”

“Why not?”

“Because.”

“We’ve been over this, sweetheart, because is not an answer.”

“Call me sweetheart again, I dare you.”

“Please?”

“No.”

“Ergh! Fine. I still love you, though!”

That’s it. Fine! Camilla wins. I will do the stupid dare!

At that very moment, the devil herself walked in. Camilla caught my eye, and we exchanged a glance. In that moment I knew that she was sure I would participate in this sick little game of hers. I would seduce one of the Marauders. And so would Elsie, and Mute, and Camilla. But now the question was who gets who.


Classes ended early considering that it was the first day back. Together Mute and I traveled to the common room, meeting Elsie on the way. We strode up the staircase, pulling our school bags along.

When we finally made it to the common room, Camilla was waiting with a piece of paper in her hand.

“A contract?” I sighed. “You really are too into this whole thing…”

“Just sign here and then we’ll decide on the semantics and such,” She held the piece of parchment out to me, and I took the quill she provided. With a flourish, I signed away my soul.

“Now, I want the real challenge, so I’m going for Black, of course. Mute should have Lupin, because they don’t know each other much. That will make it easier. Elsie already agreed that she should have Peter, simply for the corresponding intellectual similarities…”

It was common knowledge around us that if you wanted to insult Elsie that you should speak with large words. She has no idea what you’re saying, it’s rather pathetic.

“And that leaves, for you Lily,” she paused. I took a deep breath, closing my eyes. Somehow, I’d known that I would be stuck with him…

“That leaves Potter for me…” I shook my head, but not with rejection, rather with disbelief. Lady Luck has dealt me a losing hand, and I’m to proceed with false bliss. At least it won’t be too hard, unlike Camilla and Mute. They will be working on this for a while, whereas I’ll just put on some slinky clothes and bat my eyelashes. I’ll have him soon, and then this whole thing will be done with. And I’ll make sure to be annoying as hell; Potter won’t pursue me at all after we’re done!


So I know that this seems really strange right now, but it will get better, I promise! Please review! Chapter Image by me.
-love-
LilyMaria


Chapter 2: Chapter Two. Mute.
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Camilla glanced at me and winked. Lily was staring at us with an innocent, and yet scandalized countenance. I almost wanted to shout at her to not care so much about this dare—it’s not like any of those guys would go for us, excluding her. She’ll win and then it will all be over. I wondered briefly if the thought ever occurred to her that it wouldn’t be hard at all for her. Camilla had already told Elsie and I that James was for Lily, not for anyone else.

I was assigned to Remus Lupin. He’s very cute, but I’ve never been up close enough to actually see if distance makes a difference. He usually appears to have three scratch marks upon his face, which worries me. I wonder if he accidentally tripped and landed on a schnid bush.

At this moment, he was raising his glass and smirking to his comrades, probably making some lame toast about some lame endeavor they’d just embarked upon. Lame…

Remus’s eyes glanced all around the room, as if he was embarrassed and didn’t want everyone to look at him. Too bad, buddy; you’re part of the elite. Leave it to one of the most popular boys to be totally handsome and sweet and smart. That’s just like them. His bright eyes flowed to Camilla, and then to Elsie, rather quickly. And then to me. I was looking right back at him, the weird and annoyed expression still resting upon my features. We stayed in the same place, frozen, as others around us continued to bustle and chatter amongst themselves. It was that moment that I thought that maybe this wouldn’t be so bad—or maybe it would be the most horrible event ever to take place in my life. 



Later, Camilla was making us all sign very formal contracts. I read mine over, unlike Lily and Elsie. The punishment for failure was disclosed only with the words, “or else”, which imply many nasty accounts. Lily signed quickly and rolled her eyes. I wondered if she was really thinking about this. I mean to sign off for a relationship with someone before having their consent is one thing, but actually seducing someone is an act worthy of sin. No, it is sin, isn’t it?

Elsie was talking to Mary Macdonald about something trivial, such as classes. I rolled my eyes and looked around the common room. Camilla seemed to notice Remus before I did, and as such she gave me a push in his direction. I whipped my head around, almost running into a third year.

“Are you insane? I look terrible!” I hissed. She laughed sardonically, as if my insecurities pleased her.

“Mute, you’re beautiful. Just go over and talk, you’re not sleeping with him tonight!” She told me. And then she seemed to rethink it, “But if you want to try, you know that’s your own thing…”

I took a deep breath, looking over at Remus. He was talking to Mimi Hans and laughing. She giggled and put a hand on his arm. A wave of jealousy swept over me as I fixed my eyes solely upon that horribly manicured hand. She probably bites her nails…

Remus looked at the hand too, but he didn’t want to be rude. It’s funny how I felt that I already knew him…

The scene seemed to be getting closer. Like my eyes had zoom in them. And then I realized that I was walking over to them. It’s weird how that happens sometimes. Your body moves before your brain can keep up.

I heard words finally as I moved closer, and tried to think of what to say when I finally reached them. It wasn’t as if I was some master flirter or that I was insanely gorgeous and could whip a guy away from some other girl with a snap of my fingers.

“I totally understand!” Mimi was giggling. I rolled my eyes and looked back, stopping right where I stood. I was about ten feet away from them, strategically placed to make an entrance. Camilla was using her hands as if she were shooing me, pushing me in the direction I’d just turned away from. Fine. I can do this!

I walked again, this time actually reaching my destination. Mimi looked up at me with a slightly odd expression—she understood exactly what I was intending. It was simple enough to see. But the thing I admired about her was that she smiled at me, nodded briefly enough so that he wouldn’t notice, and stepped away. I stared in shock as she said goodbye to Remus and then hi to me. What a sweetheart!

I smiled back radiantly and wondered if I’d been too quick to judge her. Remus looked up upon Mimi’s salutation and stared at me for a moment too long. His scratches that were on his face were more prominent up close, but he still looked handsome. Perhaps they were battle wounds from a fight, or the karma related punishment to one of his many pranks that the four of them pulled?

“Hi, I’m Mute,” I greeted. I expected him to scoff and suggest a pun or something that usually went along with my name. I get that a lot, actually.

“I’m Remus Lupin, pleasure to meet you?” He grinned. I immediately took a step closer, almost subconsciously. This boy had style, I’ll give him that.

“Well, I’ve wanted to come introduce myself for a while. You’re quite intriguing from afar,” Okay, Mute, slow down. This is insane.

Instead of reacting as I’d expected, Remus grinned and held out a hand, “well I’m glad that you did.”

I shook his hand, not feeling a spark, but definitely having an embarrassing vision of the future to come. I’d expected Remus to be shyer. This is interesting.
“So, would you like to play a game of wizard’s chess, Remus?” I asked, noticing that we were standing next to the only vacant board available. Remus looked over to a small cluster of people, I’m guessing they were surrounded around James, Sirius, and Peter, and then looked back at me.

“You know what?” I waited. He smiled, “I’d love to.”

Thanks for reading chapter two! I hope you review, and that you enjoyed it! Chapter image by me.
-Love-
LilyMaria


Chapter 3: Chapter Three. Camilla.
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The others don’t quite understand just how difficult this is going to be for them. Even innocent little Elsie thinks that losing her virginity to Peter Pettigrew will be an easy task; she hasn’t even taken into consideration the fact that Peter hasn’t even spoken directly to a girl in at least five years. Lily is especially nonchalant about the dare—which she shouldn’t be. Has she bothered to think about the fact that James will never leave her alone after this?

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying that this is going to be a piece of cake. Except that I totally am. Sirius is a whore, and everyone knows it. He’ll do anyone at anytime and not care about anything. And that’s why I chose him, and not Peter frickin Pettigrew.

I pushed back a strand of honey colored hair. Originally my hair is a deep brown, but it felt only right to practice my beauty charms and make it lighter, considering my oh so sweet disposition.

Right on schedule, my dark haired hunk stepped out of the History of Magic classroom, and bumped right into me. My books went everywhere. This moment was expertly planned and I’d spent at least two days practicing my book scatter. Now this plan rested squarely upon Sirius’s shoulders. He, according to my research, would bend down and assist me in picking up my scattered belongings, of course. Except, there was always the option for him to stroll about, muttering a brief apology before turning around, and walking away.

But I’m beautiful, and therefore the only option was to help, in his eyes. I’ve got the boy narrowed down to a science.

His hand, outstretched, held my transfiguration text book, along with a pen. I gently reached my hand up and acquired them. I’d never actually spoken to Sirius, except for in second year, when we were partners for a potions lab. I’d taken a liking to him, but as soon as that project was over, his shoulder had turned cold to me. Now it was time to extract revenge. After all, hell hath no fury than a woman scorned. And oh have I been scorned…

I lifted my head to give my radiant smile, the one I’d actually degraded myself enough to practice in front of a mirror. It was just innocent enough to look great, and hot enough for him to be pleasantly intrigued. His eyes widened just a tiny bit, and a smirk broke out upon his face. He looked very nice, his uniform not perfect by not messily put on either.

“Thank you,” I said in a slightly higher tone than my usual voice, I tried to put sweetness into this first comment. Attracting someone is a planned process.

“Hey, no problem! Do I know you?” He asked. I smiled and tilted my head to look at him. His voice was nice, slightly lower than James’ and his eyes were a shade lighter than Peter’s.

“I’m Camilla Hollisander, Gryffindor.” It was common knowledge amongst the students that when introducing yourself, it was only polite to inform the other of your house.

“Sirius Black, Gryffindor,” He smirked. He took a small step back and started to scan my face, my body, and then my overall presence. “I think I recognize you…”

“I believe we had potions in second year together…” His face lit up slightly as he recounted. I smiled, almost feeling my plan work.

“Yeah, I think I’m starting to remember. Are you coming to the common room?” He asked. I nodded. “We should go together! It’s the least I could do, after walking straight into you like that…”

I smiled brightly, nodding, and tucking my arm in the nook he created with his elbow. The other girls were probably just introducing themselves to the concept of this dare, whereas I was fulfilling it.

Hope you enjoyed it! Chapter image by me. Please review!
-love-
LM


Chapter 4: Chapter Four. Elsie.
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The act of chewing in itself is rather disgusting. I hate chewing, so I try to eat as little as possible, choosing instead to use charms in order to liquidate my food. Surprisingly, it’s not as gross as you might think! Camilla tells me all the time that this repulses all the guys, but since I’m not exactly interested in them, it doesn’t matter. I’m not gay or anything, just not obsessed with the males. I like chicken and corn-bread shakes.

My mother likes to point out my flaws, and therefore loves to remind me how disgusting the shakes are. “You can’t just liquidate all your vegetables!” Whatever. I think being different is the key to blending in, if that makes sense. That’s why I like Peter. He’s so simple—not complex like most other guys, including his three best friends—and therefore I understand him. He’s really cute too. My twin sister, Haley, enjoys teasing me about him. I used to obsessively stalk James, but when he proved too in love with Lily, I discovered Peter. Don’t get me wrong, please, I’m not saying he’s a second choice—a consolation prize—but rather the brightest of the light bulbs.

I’ve only talked with him, face to face, once before. It was magical.

“Hi, I’m Elsie Aliskaiser, Gryffindor,” I told him, smiling. He looked a bit timid, so I held out my hand. He took it and beamed. I don’t believe he’s had much interaction with girls, but he wasn’t sweating and stuttering or anything. He actually seemed like a very normal guy, which was wonderful!

“Peter Pettigrew, Gryffindor.” He had a slightly higher voice than most of the guys I know, but not feminine or anything. Actually he looked really cute and completely straight! “Nice to meet you!”

“It’s nice to meet you, too. Are you here alone?” We were in a crowded corridor, but he looked all by himself.

“Yes. Are you?”

“Yes…”

We talked for a few more minutes and then we had to go to class—him to transfiguration, me to ancient runes—so we didn’t actually have a deep, meaningful conversation that completely changed my life, but it was still magical.

When Camilla suggested the dare, I was immediately enthralled with the idea that I could be closer to Peter. I don’t want to hurt him; I see this as a way to bring us together. Not tear us apart. If you have nothing, you have nothing to lose, right?

I walked slowly down the stairs and stopped on the last step, listening through the crack that was between the big two wooden doors that separated the common room from the dormitory staircase. In the common room there were only four students—convenient, no?

“Lily just came up to me and smiled softly. I don’t know, I think something is going to happen! What if she likes me?” James was practically whispering. I had to strain to hear it, and I understood why he had to whisper—didn’t want Lily to hear him talking about her.

“Well, have you spoken to her?” Peter said. My heart pounded, feeling like it would shatter if I let my pulse speed up any faster. I closed my eyes and smiled.

“No,” James interrupted my heavenly minute. “I am kind of nervous.”

“Don’t be. But now it’s my turn for report,” Sirius said, as if the report was some kind of event. “So I talked with three Ravenclaws, snogged a Hufflepuff, and I had a conversation with this girl named…Camilla.”

“Lily’s friend?” James asked fervently.

“I guess. She’s really class, I mean her jumper was unbuttoned; I almost started to lean in to kiss her,” Black muttered the last part. I had to stifle a giggle. The topics these guys talk about…

“I met this one girl named Mute. We talked for four hours straight. She’s sweet, but…well you know my issue with relationships,” Remus’s voice sounded for the first time, seemingly giving his ‘report’.

“Your furry little problem?” James laughed. I’m guessing that Remus nodded, because they moved on. I waited for Peter to say something…

“What about you Pete?” I held my breath. Then heaven arrived.

“I talked to a really pretty girl!” Peter sounded ecstatic! Eek!

“That’s great, Wormtail!” James and Sirius said together. I heard a clap; they’d smacked him on the back.

“Yeah, she was real pretty, and she likes the Blubbering Blades, just like I do!” Wait...I hadn’t mentioned that I liked them…

“What’s her name, Wormy?”

“Haley Aliskaiser…” WHAT?

I hope that you all liked it! Thanks so much to everyone who has reviewed, please continue! Chapter image by me.
-love-
LM


Chapter 5: Chapter Five. Lily.
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Author's Note: This chapter is dedicated to ItalianKiss. I hope it's long enough for you ;)

Over the course of a week, it was easy to convince anyone of anything. I convinced my parents that Hogwarts was a real place in under a week. I convinced my sister that I was a natural born freak in just four days. I convinced Camilla that she was better as a brunette in two minutes. I’m good at deceiving, a talent I was born with, I suppose. But for some stupid, inconceivable reason I was having an immense amount of difficulty convincing Mute that I was mentally stable enough to perform this task.

It’s not like she’s any more sane than I am, so I don’t know why she bothers to analyze everything that I do. I mean, I practically live in the city of Sane. I’m the mayor! And I’m pretty sure I just convinced you that I’m abnormally insane.

“Lily, I just think that maybe this isn’t the best idea for you,” She was saying. I rolled my eyes and plopped down upon my big comforter that covered my four-poster bed. The hallway between the common room and the dormitory was filled with the echoes of the merriment happening downstairs. Mute sat down on her own bed, pulling a goose feather pillow to her chest.

“Look who’s talking, Mute,” I snapped. Ever since I’d signed that contract, life had become fused by this little experiment. Quite frankly, I was tired of having to pretend that I was concerned about James’s well-being. “Look, no one is going to get hurt but him.”

“But do you realize how you’re going to feel after you tear up his heart? Lily, Camilla can’t get into your head too! You’re not as nasty as she is!” Her voice rang through the dormitory, coating all the surfaces. “Don’t become her.”

“Calm down, gosh. Maybe I am as vile as her?” I spat back. Camilla wasn’t on the defensive when she heard this.

“I’m trying to sleep. Can you please lower your voices?” She called with a harsh tone. Elsie was lightly snoring on the other side of me, in her own comfy bed. It was late at night, but almost all the rest of our dorm mates were downstairs with guys.

“Sorry, Cam,” Mute shrugged.

“Whatever.”

“Lily, at least think about him, and what you’re doing to him.” Mute sighed and walked downstairs, probably to try and get a few minutes with Remus before she had to go to bed as well. They’d become quite the pair, talking for hours at a time, sending secret smiles over at each other, and once I caught them just standing across from each other in a corridor, just looking at each other’s eyes and smiling fondly. It was sickening.

“Lil,” Camilla’s voice rang out. I hopped slowly from my bed and walked to hers, curling around one of her bed posts. “Mute’s right.”

“Excuse me?”
“Look, James is a real person. He has feelings. I may be the devil incarnate, but you aren’t. You’re one of the sweetest people I know, just not to him.”

“He curses innocent people, makes fun of Severus!” I shouted. “And all without giving one single thought to how they feel! Why should I care what he feels, if he has no respect for his victim’s thoughts?”

“Lily, have you ever considered the possibility that this whole tough guy, school bully act is all just to impress you?” She mumbled. I could tell that the sleep was wearing down on her. She turned around and curled up in a ball, looking the most vulnerable I’d ever seen her. I was trying to think about what she said, ignoring the logic of it.

I walked blindly back to my own bed in the dark, the room dimly illuminated by the furnace, but still too dark to distinguish anything but shapes. When I reached my bed, I pushed myself under the comforter and sighed. Maybe James wasn’t so bad? I mean, if he did all this just to impress…me, it is kind of romantic…kind of. The only reason I was doing this stupid dare was because he annoyed me, and I wanted to hurt his feelings. How immature.

I stood, in my pajamas, and walked to the door. As quietly as possible, so Camilla wouldn’t hear me. Students were dancing and snogging and drinking in the common room. When did this happen?

I suppose this is the kind of scene you miss when you’re a ‘prude’ like Lily Evans…

“Lily!” Two girls rushed over to me. I smiled, feeling a tad bit wonky. I was in my pajama bottoms and a tank top, without bra, and they were dressed for a royal affair. Was it really this exclusive? Gosh, I must look ridiculous.

“Hi Molly, Trisha!” I greeted, flashing a smile that I’d tried with my dad and got me a new puppy. They smiled back, just as brightly. I wondered if they were thinking malicious thoughts about me, about the way I looked. I brushed the thought off, thinking it stupid to be so concerned about what others thought.

“Did you not know about the party?” Trisha grinned. She spoke with her words slightly slurred, and I knew she was drunk from the moment she opened her mouth. I could smell the cheap alcohol on her breath.

“No, I knew. I just didn’t think it so crucial to dress for it. Besides, this is against…I mean,” I was about to scold them for disobeying the clear and binding school regulations, but then I had a flash of James’s face in my mind. As if my telling these girls off would completely ruin this dare. Don’t ask me why, but I changed my tune immediately. “Where’s the firewhiskey?”

“Over by that table,” Molly was pointing. I followed her finger to the nook right beside the giant stone fireplace. “You see? Last time we were there…what’s his name was serving…”

She trailed off, smiling with a drunken grin. Envy struck inside of me like a rod and I felt the urge to imitate her actions; to be as free and careless as Molly Salvatore. I beamed over my shoulder at the pair of teenage girls as I made my way carefully over to the table where bottles upon bottles of rum lay, waiting to be consumed.

Peter Pettigrew was sitting in a wooden rocking chair just behind this magnificent display, his eyes wide at the sight of me. He asked with disbelief, “You want a drink?”

“Yes. Two please, for me and a friend.” I lied. I planned to drink both and afterwards, perhaps get some more. The more alcohol, the better. I’d never actually drank real firewhiskey before, but I’d seen Elsie and Camilla swig back quite the cornucopia of beverages in their times. Mostly after a rough breakup, failed exam, or just the not so occasional boredom the seeped into us after the first few weeks of classes, Elsie would indulge. Camilla would be drinking whenever, I didn’t always know why. Mute and I never cosseted, choosing to just amuse the inebriate, whoever it might be.

Peter handed me two bottles, smirking slightly at my hesitation. I took a quick gulp right in front of him, just to show off a little. The surprise was on me though, as I’d never tasted alcohol before, and as such was not accustomed to the ache that was in my throat, the burning on my larynx. I coughed a lot, but managed to earn only the tiniest bit of attention; someone new wanted a drink. Thank Merlin.

Mute was sitting with Remus in the corner, just talking. They seemed very in control of themselves. Envy—that blasted emotion—once more took me. I sauntered to the nearest chair and set one bottle down on the table while sipping on the other. Should I just tell Camilla that this entire dare is off? I mean, I haven’t even spoken to James. Then again, I probably wouldn’t need to. That’s when I hatched the evil plan that would spell downfall and ruin, in my eyes anyway.

James was sitting with Molly on the giant red couch in the center of the room, right in front of the fireplace. An ideal location, an attractive guy, and a disturbance in said plan. Molly…

I chugged down the rest of the bottle, starting on the next almost immediately. My brain was starting to feel a bit fuzzy…no my eyes. No…definitely my brain! I noticed another bottle sitting on the table, right next to where the one I was currently consuming had been. It was half full—I’m an optimist—and I wasn’t going to let it go to waste!

So the two and a half firewhiskey bottles that I drank were the root, if you ask me. They were the reason that I catapulted from the table over to the big red couch, right beside James, and in front of Molly.

“Hi, James.” The black haired guy’s eyes ran from my bloodshot eyes, down to my mouth, slowly down the rest of me. I ate the attention up. “You looked lonely, I thought that I’d come see you.”

“James wasn't lonely; he was talking to me!” Molly shouted from behind me. I paid no attention, scooting just a bit closer to the object of my desire at this given moment. The faster I hooked him, the faster I could just sleep with him, and therefore win this stupid dare.

“Er…Hullo Lily,” He ran a shaky hand through his hair. I found the action adorable, feeling the urge to do it myself. So I did. As my hand passed through his hair, onto the back of his neck, I paused. So close…

I began to lean in, smiling in spite of myself. James leaned in. We were two inches apart! And then, he stopped.

“Perhaps we should save this for another night?”

“No,” I cried. “No, no. I know everything’s going to be alright!”

I kept my hand on the nape of his neck, scooting even closer. I heard a huff behind me and the pressure of the seat cushion rise; Molly was no longer here. This meant more space and freedom with James.

We continued to lean in, my vision slightly blurry because of the firewhiskey. James reached a hand and put it on my shoulder, his other hand resting upon my cheek. As our lips met, I felt a release. We molded together as briskly as possible, his body fitting into the areas mine left vacant, and mine doing the same. We were snogging like our lives depended on it; it was actually a bit pathetic.

He stroked my cheekbone with his thumb, the rest of his hand tangling itself into my hair. I’d have a difficult time combing that out later…

We broke apart for air. He seemed so eager to continue, that I felt a rush and a small pain in my lungs. He pulled me back to him. James’ hands were everywhere that was seemingly appropriate in public. His arm was wrapped firmly around me, pushing me to him by the small of my back. I felt a small noise escape from my throat, and I blushed.
He grunted. Somehow amongst all this, I forgot it was James and seemingly realized it was James. We broke apart once more, his eyes opening. I saw them, the light hazel darkened.

“We have to stop this,” He said evenly. We were still embracing, but something was missing now. The urgency was replaced by common sense. “You’re drunk off your wits and I’m taking advantage of you. I’m sorry…”

“No, no. I like being taken of advantage of of…” I was way too drunk to be speaking.

“C’mon, Lily. I’ll tuck you into bed.”

He held me up by supporting me with my arm around his shoulders. I sighed and rolled my eyes as we exited the party. A few people looked at us bemused and flabbergasted—seemingly polar opposites…together?

The stairs were no trouble for James. To this day, I’m still not sure how he managed to get me into my bed; all I know is that he did. He pushed me into the blankets, which at first were cold but soon became warmer. He used the sides of his hands to push the covers to me, forcing me into a little cocoon of cotton. He kissed my forehead and grinned in a somehow sheepish manner.

“I waited for so long, and then when you finally kiss me—you’re drunk.” He laughed to himself. At the time, I’d been far too drunk to form complete sentences. “Good night, Lily Evans…”


This is by no means supposed to be promoting alcohol. I know you probably weren't thinking that, but I just thought I'd make that clear.
Thank you to everyone who has reviewed! I greatly appreciate it! I hope everyone had a good Thanksgiving!
Please review!
Love,
LilyMaria



Preview of Chapter Six:

I looked into Remus's eyes and somehow saw a kindness that I hadn't anticipated. I knew then that he couldn't hurt me, even if he wanted to. Now, as much as I yearned to turn away and let my face flush from the intensity, but instead I was entraced further by this realization.
I cared for him much more than I should. He smirked suddenly, started to lean towards me. I closed my eyes, wanting nothing more than to feel his lips on mine. But he didn't kiss me. No, instead, suddenly we were in darkness.


Chapter 6: Chapter Six. Mute.
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It’s become something of a hassle, the dare. The reason being that whenever I’m enjoying time with Remus, thinking that we’re getting on really well, the dare floats into my mind and I think about all the lies I have to tell him and the tasks I have to do with him in order to win. And the sad part of this is that I don’t even care about the challenge anymore. He’s quite the charmer.

Some days are harder than others. Mostly when we spend time alone, with the fireplace glowing in our peripheral vision, and the heat that’s radiating from it, it’s very hard to concentrate on conversation. But that’s what we’re based on right now. We haven’t even hugged yet. I’m starting to lose hope, but you never know?

It was almost three o’clock in the afternoon, and yet the sun looked as if it were about to set. I was walking to meet with Remus; yesterday he’d asked if we could talk over by the whomping willow. I’d been hesitant, as this was not a destination I was familiar with, nor formerly intending to visit. It was his half-smile that made my decision, of course.

I was walking down the steps, entering the courtyard with the eagle fountain, when I was harshly pulled to the side by a calloused hand. I almost shrieked, but I was too afraid to. The shadows were just a bit colder than I’d anticipated, and mixed with my fear, the feeling made me shiver.

“I’m not going to hurt you, sorry,” A chuckle from the voice of the aggressor. I looked up; Sirius Black, I should have known. “I just wanted to have a little chat with you.”

“Chat away, sir,” I don’t know why suddenly I was so calm, but I was. It was strange, but I felt at ease with the childlike essence that seemed to be resonating away from Sirius.

“Remus, my brother, he happens to like you,” he said. It was reproachful, as if at any moment he would blurt out that he was kidding. I heeded this, taking care to control my expression, as this could just be a ploy. This didn’t cancel out the fact that on the inside I was dancing with joy and adrenaline. I just nodded meekly. “He’s…well he’s special, Mute, and I don’t really want him to say something to you if you’re not seriously into him. I need to know that I can trust you with him?”

“Look, I like him a lot. Right now, it’s a little awkward for me to be talking to you though.”

“Why?”

“I don’t know, it’s just kind of strange,” I mumbled. He chuckled again, a barking sound. “I trust him more than any guy in…a long time. And I hope he trusts me too; I’d never intentionally hurt him.” Just, you know, seduce him and then potentially break both of our hearts and ruin the remainder of my seventh year on the whim of one mischievous manipulator who happens to be one of my best friends, oh, and the girl who is currently attempting to do the same to you.

He smiled at me, a genuine smile that I never expected to see on his face. “I believe you. Mute…that’s an interesting name.”

“Yeah, I get that a lot,” I beamed. We walked away from the shadows, and pretty soon he was escorting to the whomping willow to meet Remus.

“Do you get a lot of pun jokes, like ‘that Mute sure does talk a lot’?” He asked. I smiled, nodding. “I get those too. Well, not with Mute, of course. People usually say I’m anything but serious.”

We walked, laughing together, him leading the way slightly in front of me. It was close to sunset now, and the sky was painted with beautiful splashes of red, pink, and blue, along with yellows and oranges here and there. I shivered again, wrapping my arms around myself in a strange hug. The snow beneath my feet crunched every step that I took. I liked the sound, letting it take me to memories of snow fights and girlish giggles.

“Sirius? Are you harassing my friend?” Remus’s voice called, waking me from my daydreaming state. I smiled at Remus, wrapped in a maroon jacket, with his Gryffindor scarf tucked in, a true brit.

“Relax, Moony, I’m merely keeping her safe from the wild creatures of these here parts. You’d know all about that, no?” I looked from guy to guy, confused. What on earth? They laughed and then Sirius said goodbye to him, waving. He turned to me and gave me a bear hug, the friendliest guy that I’d probably ever known.

“Bye Sirius.” The sound was muffled by the hug, but he chuckled and retreated once more to the castle, where I’m sure Camilla would be waiting to talk with him and enchant him.

“Beguiling another Marauder? I’m wounded,” Remus laughed, holding his hand to his chest with mock hurt. I beamed, shaking my head and walking over to where he stood. The sky was turning darker by the minute, reminding us that the day would be up soon. The moon was visible just behind some trees, waxing crescent.

“Oh gosh, the moon looks beautiful!” I said without really meaning to. He gave me a very strange look, as if I was on the borderline of insulting him. I looked down, feeling really guilty for no apparent reason.

“There’s a party going on in the common room tonight, do you want to go?” He asked suddenly, changing the subject rather quickly.

“Is that why you wanted me to meet you by the most dangerous tree in history of ever?” I asked. “You wanted to invite me to a party?”

“Er…yeah.”

“Okay,” I said, shrugging and smiling. We walked to the castle, ready for supper.

We ate in separate groups, and I was with Lily, trying to convince her that her mean outlook on this entire thing was stupid and impractical. I mean, she treats James like dirt sometimes. I secretly think that she likes him. A lot. But she’s afraid to be a hypocrite, and therefore keeps up a façade.

We arrived back at dorm, and on the way there, I saw Remus sitting in an arm chair. He winked at me, and I smiled brightly back, waving a tiny wave and following Camilla up to the dorm. A few hours passed, and soon most of the girls in our dorm fled to go hook up with guys at the party. I heard most of the people downstairs getting ready, but it seemed as though Camilla and Lily were oblivious.

Lily walked over to her bed, moving the blankets so that it formed a curvy triangle, awaiting the sleeping form of her. I sighed, trying to convey my point.

“Lily, I just think that maybe this isn’t the best idea for you,” I mumbled. She rolled her bright green eyes and climbed into her blankets slowly. I sighed and sat down on my own bed, the comforter feeling comfortable and fluffy, almost convincing me that I should sleep too. But I couldn’t listen to weird enchanting bed dressings; I had a boy to romance.

A few cheers were coming from downstairs—someone had brought alcohol.

“Look who’s talking, Mute,” She snapped. I raised my eyebrows. “Look, no one is going to get hurt but him.”

She sounded an awful like Camilla. I grimaced. That manipulator had already convinced Elsie to flaunt herself all over Peter; she wasn’t going to get Lily too.

“But do you realize how you’re going to feel after you tear up his heart? Lily, Camilla can’t get into your head too! You’re not as nasty as she is!” My voice rang through the dormitory, coating all the surfaces. “Don’t become her.”

The last few words came out weakly, as if I was begging.

“Calm down, gosh. Maybe I am as vile as her?” She spat back. It almost made me laugh that the girl we were talking about was mere feet away, listening.

“I’m trying to sleep. Can you please lower your voices?” She called with a harsh tone. I heard Elsie emit a soft, high pitched snore from the other side of Lily, and chuckled to myself.

“Sorry, Cam,” I shrugged.

“Whatever.”

“Lily, at least think about him, and what you’re doing to him.” I walked downstairs, slowly. Replaying the entire conversation in my head, I sighed and entered the common room. The students were all scattered, some with drinks and with partners. A few couples were snogging in various areas of the warm room. I felt my lips purse a tiny bit as I thought of Remus and me snogging. How odd? I’d never thought of it before. Would he be gentle, as his countenance? Or wild, as I’d assumed he was underneath everything?

A sudden tap on my shoulder cleared my mind instantly, as I turned and gazed at the person I had been just thinking about. A flush came to my cheeks and I smiled meekly.

“Hey, want a drink?” Remus asked me. I looked up at him, confused.

“Um, no alcohol, please,” I muttered. He started laughing.

“That’s not what I meant,” He chuckled and handed me a cup of pumpkin juice. I accepted as another flush crept onto my face. “Let’s go talk.”

“All right,” I smiled.

Several minutes later, we were playing a game of truth.

“Would you ever cheat on a test?” I asked. The questions had been pretty mundane and frivolous thus far, not amounting to much and definitely not increasing my chances of winning the dare.

“No,” He smirked. “Could you ever love a monster?”

“What kind of monster, exactly?” I asked. This was by far the most intense question.

“I dunno, perhaps a vampire, or a mutilated guy, or…a werewolf?” The last one he said rather quickly. I pursed my lips once again, in deep thought. I emitted a low hmmm as I let my eyes stroll over the faces in the common room. Peter, Roger, Ken, Molly, Trish, Helga, James, Lily…LILY?!

My eyes widened and I saw that she was with James, snogging. Oh my goodness. She was all over him, poor bloke. Remus seemed to notice too, because he stiffened his posture. “Oh…wow.”

“I think I could.” I finally answered.

“What?” He seemingly had forgotten the question.

“I think I could love a monster. If he were humane,” I smiled. His lips smiled, but his eyes showed a different emotion.

“I want to tell you something, but I can’t do it here. Do you want to accompany me to the astronomy tower, malady?” He offered me his arm, and I took it. His skin radiated warmth that I relished. We talked about trivial subjects on the journey, eventually reaching the tower.

It was really dark, but then he turned on some light that I hadn’t seen. Desks and telescopes lined the walls, but the center of the room was devoted to a small square of couches where the class discusses their findings. The couches were empty now.

I took a seat on the closest one, right in front of the largest window I’ve ever seen. Looking over the night sky, I was distracted until Remus sat down closely next to me. The switch to the large light was hanging from the ceiling, and it kept brushing my shoulder—rather annoying.

Remus sighed.

“What did you want to tell me?” I asked, trying to be as sincere and attractive as possible, contrasting objectives.

“I have a confession. And I’m afraid that it will completely alter that way you see me, and...feel about me. Because, unless I’m terrible at reading people, you like me…I think. And I really like you, Mute. But I think that your feelings for me will be changed after you hear…”

“Remus, you kind of scaring me.”

“Good! You should be scared. When I asked you if you could ever love a monster, it was because I was testing the waters. I didn’t know how to tell you this, and I still don’t. Mute…I’m the monster.”

I stared at him, my mouth agape, my head spinning, “What?”

“I’m a…” He took a very deep breath, and closed his eyes. “I’m a werewolf.”

I blinked radically for a few seconds, registering this information in my mind. It’s sickening, but the first thought that popped up in my mind was ‘how will this affect the dare?’

“I don’t care.” I said quickly. He opened his eyes lightening fast and stared at me.

“You…don’t care.”

“No.”

“How can you not care?” His voice was incredulous.

“Because I like you, and I don’t think I could stay away from you anyway, so what’s in the point in thinking about that? I mean, just because you’re cursed with that terrible syndrome, well…it doesn’t matter. I like you, and you’re human now. That’s all that matters.”

“I could kill you. I could snap your bones, and kill you. That doesn’t bother you?”

“Well, if you make it sound like that…” He cut me off.

“That’s how it is! Mute, I don’t have brains when I transform. I’m just an animal.”

My perverted mind suddenly got the best of me. “An animal? Does that translate to your human self?”

“Well, if I get too angry or…well if I get angry, then yeah. But I don’t have the strength as a human that I do as a werewolf, just the intensity.” I smirked, he obviously didn’t catch on to what I’d been alluding to.

“That explains so much. I mean, you have this wildness about you sometimes. And the scratches…” I smiled at him, and he smiled back, bemused.

I looked into Remus's eyes and somehow saw a kindness that I hadn't anticipated. I knew then that he couldn't hurt me, even if he wanted to. Now, as much as I yearned to turn away and let my face flush from the intensity, but instead I was entranced further by this realization.

I cared for him much more than I should. He smirked suddenly, starting to lean towards me. I closed my eyes, wanting nothing more than to feel his lips on mine. But he didn't kiss me. No, instead, suddenly we were in darkness. I opened my eyes quickly.

The sky in front of me through the large window was suddenly illuminated by the sheer darkness of the room we were in. Remus wrapped an arm around my shoulders, and I looked at him, slightly embarrassed by my expectation that he was going to kiss me earlier. But then he started leaning in again, and this time, his eyes closed before mine. 


Holy cow, shocking! I hope you enjoyed this chapter! Thank you to everyone who has reviewed thus far, I hope you continue to do so! Thanks!
-love-
LM

Chapter 7: Chapter Seven. Camilla.
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“Let’s get out of here,” He winked at me. I felt something inside of me just pop, like all of a sudden nothing else mattered. I won't bore you with the details of how I ended up in the common room. Simply, I decided that it was a good opportunity, and after Lily snuck out, I changed and went too. I could see Remus and Mute exiting the common room, Remus with a strange expression written upon his face. Looking to my left, I saw James with a very drunk Lily. It was confusing to say the least, and honestly I wasn’t very eager to hear the story of how they got to where they are. All that mattered right now was the grin on Sirius’ face, and the warm feeling that spread through me as I beamed up at him and took his outstretched hand.

He pulled me up from the couch and grinned to himself as we trotted through the crowd, tens of girls eying me like I was the biggest bitch in the land—not too far off ladies. What was it about Sirius that sent the females into frenzy? His good looks, his charm, his debonair persona that seemed to only fall apart whenever Remus or Peter or James was talking to him? But was that the guy he really was? That was my goal as of late—I was going to decode the infamous Black.

He pulled me closer to him as we exited the common room, and I smiled to myself, earning an interested glance from him. I winked and he grinned, tugging me even closer. I had a small feeling that perhaps tonight was the night I would finally win. After like a week of just talking to the guy, I would finally win the stupid dare that I’d proposed.

About the dare—I’d done that with a bit of haste. I mean, I was hurt from Ken Kroger (arrogant bitch) breaking up with me. Okay, that’s a bit of an understatement. See, if Ken hadn’t broken up with me, out of the blue (and I mean completely), then this whole thing probably wouldn’t be happening. The four boys were actually random. I know Lily thinks that they weren’t, and Mute thinks that I have a thing for Black, but the truth is, they were just the four boys that were unavailable and promiscuous enough—well Black and Potter, at least. It just seemed to fit. Four with Four—but now that’s backfiring.

See, last night, Elsie decided we should copy the four of the guys and try the reports. I protested at first, not seeing the relevance, as this is a competition, but I gave in eventually and we huddled together on Mute’s bed, curtains closed, silencing charm in effect.

“So, I think I’m going to approach James tomorrow, but I don’t know how…any ideas?” Lily began. I proposed she just go over and kiss him, but she refused, blushing like mad. I mean, what’s the use in blushing about simply snogging a guy if your ultimate objective is to seduce him? Isn’t that silly, I mean, seriously?

We contributed a bit about that, but eventually the topic became kind of boring, and I knew all the other girls, not excluding myself, were thinking about their own guys and their own problems. Elsie finally caved and piped up.

“Peter likes Haley.”

Ouch. Talk about a low blow—I mean, I can understand if he liked someone else maybe, but someone who looked practically identical to Elsie? Ouch.
“Convince him that it’s you he wants, not Haley,” I told her.

“And how do you think I should do that?” Her tone was that of a non-believer. Like I could possibly be wrong when it came to guys? And Peter? He was even easier than the usual bloke.

“Do something she doesn’t dare to do. Be adventurous, be timid, be slutty, I don’t care, just be what she is, but more!” I told her.

How the hell was I supposed to know that the idiot would take my words to mean that she should go and take off her top to Peter. I mean, it captured his interest (probably made him wet himself) and all, but I would never stoop so low to get Peter freaking Pettigrew.

Sirius blew a shallow bit of air into my ear, making me giggle—planned, of course. Everything about this entire endeavor was planned. Down to a science, as I’ve previously said. And that’s all that really matters. In order to win, you have to play the game, correct? And to play, you must have strategy, right? To have strategy, you have to fucking plan!

I wrapped my arms around his neck and swayed a bit, making him stop walking and just stand with me, in the middle of the fifth floor corridor. We were standing in front of the portrait of Romeo and Juliet, the perfect spot; the perfect moment. I started to lean in. He grinned, and leaned in. This is the time when the plan is finally set into motion and executed perfectly.

This is where my plan failed. Because as his face drew closer to mine, all I could think about was Ken Kroger and how much I missed him. I felt a jab at my heart and a fall in my stomach, like all my hopes shattered and decided to tumble down. I turned away, a tear escaping from my eye and I suddenly remembered the time that Ken lead me out for a midnight stroll. He’d taken the advice of one of his mates and brought me down to the lake. The moon was shining on the water, giving a perfect setting. That’s the similarity between Ken Kroger and me, Camilla. We plan, and we execute, and we set others in motion as well. I hadn’t seen him much, and was thrilled, vulnerable only with him, enough to be thrilled.

He walked us over to a small oak tree, standing against the trunk and pulling me to him. I smiled at him, and he smiled at me. I wrapped my arms around him neck, only to have him say, “Millie, things aren’t working out.”

I took a very deep breathe, my head falling onto Sirius’s chest. He stiffened, obviously panicking. He had been planning for a quick snog with me, obviously. I took another breath, the humiliation seeping into me like water to a sponge.

“I’m sorry, Sirius,” I quickly assessed the situation, deciding that this vulnerability could work for me later. Make him see me as a damsel in distress—emotion distress is distress nonetheless. “It’s just…I don’t know why, but I just feel so safe with you, and that scares me.”

“Camilla, darling,” He stretched the syllables on darling in order to make me laugh—he succeeded, and I’m not entirely sure if I planned laughing or not. My defenses are down, and therefore I’m not prepared right now for this. “Honestly, I’m not the nicest guy or anything, but you really don’t have to be scared of being with me.”

“I’m just not used to people being so nice to me…” I trailed off, leaving him hanging there, waiting for me to continue.

“Well, get used to it, Camilla Hollisander, because I’m going to be around…a lot.” He grinned and I beamed up at him, the tears still kind of in my eyes. I blinked hard and they splashed onto my cheek. He took his hand and wiped them off, smiling at me.

As his thumb wiped away the last tear, he let his hand rest on my cheek. I leaned into his touch, and closed my eyes. I practically could feel him staring at me. I waited expectantly.

“I really want to…” He whispered, but stopped himself. I felt a strain on his voice. Why did he sound so strange? What else was he going to say?

I opened my eyes, arching my eyebrows, and opening my mouth a little. He half-smiled and I wanted to just yell, “Get it over with!”

I didn’t, and he took another minute to just stare at my face.

“What’s wrong?”

“I just feel like I’m taking advantage of you, and that isn’t what I…do. You know?” NO!!!

“Uhm…it’s okay?” It sounded too earnest. I look like such a slag right now!

“No, we should save this for another time. There will be another time,” He said it more to himself than to me, but I could tell he was pained to let it stop here. Was he planning me? Like I had planned for him? Was he using the “Semi-hard-to-get-despite-technically-already-being-got-leave-em-hanging” method?

I smiled, and we walked back into the common room, hand in hand.

By the time we returned, most of the buzz had worn down, students passed out on couches, tables, the floor, everywhere. Firewhiskey bottles lined most surfaces, and there was a stench in the air, that I purposefully blocked from inhaling; I didn’t want to associate it with this moment.

I turned to Sirius when we got to the top of the stairs and kissed him on the cheek, like I always did when we said hello or goodbye. He grinned at me, and let go of my hand. I looked over the little balcony that looked over the common room, and right in my line of vision I saw that arrogant bitch, Ken Kroger. No bitterness in my tone at all. No sarcasm in my tone at all. Wow, I suck at lying to myself.

I blinked away the image of him, passed out just below with his tongue practically hanging out of his mouth and onto his cheek, his legs sprawled over the top of the biggest arm chair. Sirius cleared his throat, and I smiled at him, turning to leave.

“Erm…bye Camilla,” He sounded weak and tired, strained. Strained seemed like a pretty fitting word for almost everything tonight. I turned around again and smiled once more, muttering a goodbye and opening the door to the stairs that would lead me to the seventh year dorm, and to my comfortable four poster bed.

I closed the door behind me, leaning against it, and taking a deep breath. I heard a crash from outside and a faint grunt. Was Sirius slamming doors because of me? That could only mean one thing: he wanted me.

This was definitely going to be interesting. I just had to make sure to keep the plan in motion next time. I couldn’t lose focus like I had tonight. This was unacceptable and inexcusable. I couldn’t let my guard down with Sirius, and I couldn’t let Ken Freaking Kroger get in my head anymore.

That part of my life is over, I told myself as I crawled into bed after changing. I need to move on. That was the point of this stupid dare.

My mind, in its pre-sleep mode, scrambled and produced the image that was of the three girls and me, talking about the dare.

“So…the dare is simple. Seduce the guy that is assigned to you. You must complete the ‘deed’ in order to receive bragging rights, and when you do, well the rest is up to you. You can dump their asses, stay with em, or you can pretend this whole thing never happened.”

My gaze had shifted to Lily with that last line, seeing her doubtful countenance. Mute bit her lip and shifted in her seat, clearing her throat and just listening. Elsie had done nothing, stared at me like I was fascinating, waiting to drink in more.

I turned to Mute. “So Chickadee, whatcha think?”

“For the last time, Camilla,” She snarled. I smirked. “That is not my name! The process didn’t even go through!”

You might be confused at this point. See, when Mute was about four, she was being teased at preschool because of all the Mute jokes. She begged her mom to let her change her name to Jennifer, Jessica, Ashley, anything normal. Her mother agreed on the name change, but decided she wouldn’t let her child choose, as they never get to choose when it first happens when they are born, so why let Mute choose now? Her mother, Crazy Mrs. Connelly, decided on Chickadee. What a wonderful name?! Mute, being mortified, agreed to keep her name.

“Think you can handle it?” I smirked over at her.

Mute raised her chin and said with a bit of flare, “I think I’m going to win.”

Now, a week later, I can see just how close she was to winning. Well played, Chickadee, well played.

Well, tomorrow’s always another day… And with that thought, I drifted off to sleep. 



I only added in the bit about Mute's name, because so many people were asking about it. I wanted to let you guys know about why she hasn't changed it, and why she got it in the first place--her mother is eccentric. I hope you enjoyed this chapter. I wanted to let you know Camilla a bit better, and also answer some questions some people needed answered, like the specifics of the dare. Thanks so much to everyone who has been reading and reviewing! Please continue to do so!
-love-
LilyMaria


Chapter 8: Chapter 8. Elsie.
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“Do something she doesn’t dare to do. Be adventurous, be timid, be slutty, I don’t care, just be what she is, but more!”

When Camilla had said that to me, I’d immediately thought to go and talk to Haley. It wasn’t as if I knew my sister perfectly, or anything. We were identical twins, but very different. If I wanted to know how to impress Peter, then I needed to know what he liked so much about my sister.

I tried to recall the words he had spoken that night I’d eavesdropped during the four guys’ ‘reports’. I giggled just thinking about that, earning a few dirty looks from some of the other people in the library. I felt a flush rise up to my cheeks, and pulled my big Thirty-Seven Ways to Distinguish a Merman From a Mermaid, special edition, up onto the desk and situated myself so that it was like a small fort I was in, with my book shielding me from the glares of the people around me.

I’m used to receiving strange looks from people. In my mind, it’s because I’m unique and interesting, but Camilla assures me, almost everyday, that it has to do with the fact that I’m abnormal and obtuse. I’m not exactly positive about what she means by obtuse, because I figured that was only relating to triangle, and so I’m still kind of trying to sort that out. Don’t get me wrong—I know I’m not smart. I’m just not an idiot either.

I know why Camilla does something, I know why Lily is so afraid to commit to this dare, and I know why it’s so hard for me to think that I might lose. Nobody in our little group understands just how much I understand!

My thoughts were pulled from the angry revelation I was experiencing, back towards the objective at hand: Peter freaking Pettigrew.

“Yeah, she was real pretty, and she likes the Blubbering Blades, just like I do!”

His words kept going over and over in my head. He said that Haley was really pretty, and excluding the fact that she really likes the color yellow, and I don’t, we usually look almost exactly the same. So I’ve got this pretty thing down.

“Do something she doesn’t dare to do, just be what she is, but more!”

Camilla told me in order to be like Haley, I have to be better than Haley, and to be better than Haley, well that would be a challenge.

What is she like…? I carefully pulled out a small roll of parchment that I kept in my messenger bag for emergencies and dipped my sugarquill in ink.

Haley -Pretty
-Nice
-Blubbering Blades
-Adventurous
-Flirty
-not me…

I sighed, letting the parchment twist up, folding into a roll again. The list was probably all smudged now. So I had to like the Blubbering Blades? I already did. I had to look like Haley? I already did. I had to be nice? I’d be an angel. I had to be adventurous? Oh I’d show him adventurous. And mix in flirty…yes, this was going to be quite a…thing.

I don’t remember actually thinking to take off my shirt in front of Peter. I don’t think I did, really. I mean, I don’t usually think before I do something. I just knew that he was dangling, unsure, and not caught. I needed to get him, and fast.

So I pulled a New-Camilla-trick and decided to think about the situation a bit. He didn’t have much experience with girls, and I didn’t have much experience with guys, either. He was swallowing a lot, and rubbing his hands fervently against the fabric of his trousers. His hair was nice that day, shiny in a masculine kind of way, stringy but not greasy. If anything, I could honestly say that he looked quite attractive.

Back to where it started.

“Hi there, Elsie, right?” He guessed at my name, which made my smile falter just a tad before it regained its usual ambience towards him. He grinned and nodded in my direction, taking a seat on the plush red armchair to my left. The fire roared and cackled a bit in the hearth, just a few feet away. I could feel a tiny bit of warmth from the flames, and smiled at I closed my eyes and inhaled the sent of fire. “How are you?”

“I’m fine, thank you.”

“Er…that’s great.” Peter paused, my lack of trying with this conversation was making him nervous. I laughed silently, inwardly and regained my composure.

“So…” I sighed, and crossed my legs. The fabric of my wool, gray uniform skirt slid just a tad bit upward, exposing just a small glimpse of my thigh. Peter’s eyes flickered down to it, his forehead starting to glisten. Was he really so nervous? He rubbed his hand along the itchy wool material of his trousers, staring intently at me.

“You don’t talk to girls a lot, do you, Pete?” He sputtered, as if my question came as a complete shock for, out of the blue.

He moved his head, not shaking, but not nodding it. Instead, he looped his head in almost a figure eight kind of motion, giving me the impression that he was saying, “maybe, kind of, sort of, yeah.”

The thought didn’t occur to me until later how degrading this was, how preposterous. I’d talked to the boy a grand total of ten minutes, and suddenly my top was pulled over my head. I shivered in the cold air of the common room. My jumper, when I’d shrugged it off to remove my blouse, was balled up on the couch behind me, the white button-up blouse resting just next to it.

Peter stared dumbfounded, his eyes as wide as saucers. I blinked, waiting for a reaction. I can’t remember just how long we stood like that. I don’t remember if I was embarrassed right away, or it the embarrassment settled in the pit of my stomach.

He blew out some air and just stared at me, “Uh…wow.”

I giggled stupidly, and then looked around. I was humiliated to an extreme rate. Why had I done that? I shivered again and scooped up my shirts, pressing them against my chest. I stumbled to get out of the common room, hurdling up the stairs, pushing the door open so hard that it slammed against the wall behind it, and rushed inside, almost breaking into tears.

No one had been in the common room, but by now, a few days later, almost everyone knew about it.

I walked down the corridor; my book clung to my chest, my head bowed. People were standing in various places, pointing and whispering at me like I was an animal at the zoo that just did something incredibly funny.

I heard them whispering and almost cried. But then I saw Haley up ahead and sped up to reach her. Maybe if I explained why I did what I did, she’d talk to me again?

“Haley! Hey Haley!” I shouted. Her shoulders went up and then down, sagging.

She turned around and suddenly I saw myself, looking at myself annoyed and staring behind me at the other students, who were most likely staring back and whispering again. I heard some people laughing from a little bit behind us.

“Haley, I need to explain,” I started.

“Save, El. I can’t even look at you right now without seeing…just don’t talk to me, okay?” I looked at her, shocked. She looked to her left and right before proceeding in the way she had been walking.

I felt the tears well up in my eyes and I shrank away from everyone. Four boys passed me in the hallway. Sirius and James were playing keep away with Remus, tossing his Arithmancy text book between the two of them. Every few steps, they would use their wands and make the book float a bit higher, laughing. Remus walked along, his hands going up every time the book passed by, but his face had an expression that looked kind of bored and pained.

Peter was walking behind, every now and then throwing in a few comments, “Way to go with that one Rem!” “Oh c’mon Padfoot, you can do better than that!”; teasing the others. His eyes flickered to me, and I just stared back.

“Later,” he mouthed, and I nodded. So he wanted to talk? Fine. I looked back and saw that Lily was passing down the hall where they were walking into. Oh dear.

She’d been avoiding James ever since the party.

As they passed each other, James looked away from the keep away game and at Lily. She looked at the stone floor and hurried past. The book dropped to the ground.

I pitied him, but I didn’t have time to worry about Lily and James. For all I know, it’s all an act to fool us. I don’t know…

Peter looked over his shoulder at me, and I gave a half-smile. He returned it. 



Ack! I hate writing for Elsie. She has a bad writing style.haha. I hope this helped fill in what happened with Elsie and Peter. Thanks so much to everyone who has reviewed! Next chapter will probably be out tomorrow if I get enough reviews ;) 
Love,
LilyMaria


Chapter 9: Chapter Nine. Lily.
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James tried to get my attention, but I just bowed my head and didn’t respond to him, passing Elsie, who wasn’t looking at me, but gave me a small smile. I refused to acknowledge James ever since the kiss, despite the little voice in my head that reminds me about how I’m not going to really be dating him. Dating…oh gosh, that word!

But even now, one day after the corridor incident, James was now avoiding me it seemed. I walked into the common room and he would go up to his dorm. He never tried to be my partner in any of our classes, like he usually did. I found myself scoping the locations, actually trying to find him. And that was good, because I needed to win this blasted dare, and so far Mute was doing a bang up job of beating me. And rubbing it our faces.

They are everywhere! Mute and Remus whispers are floating around. They take walks everywhere, holding hands, leaning in to whisper instead of talking normally, because they are so close. Damn them.

Part of me, the friend to this girl, is very happy for her. Because in spite of the fact that I know it’s all for the dare, it really seems like she’s happy with Remus. Like they’ve really, truly found something in each other. And that’s somewhat relieving and really sweet, because Mute hasn’t had a boyfriend in forever, and I don’t think I’ve ever seen Remus with a girl.

I walked into Muggle Studies (Camilla was constantly badgering me about how I don’t really have to take this class, but it’s still quite interesting) and sat down in my usual seat. I took out a roll of parchment to use as lecture notes, and also a quill. I felt strangely worried, so I took out another just in case, along with my ink pot. Before I opened my ink, I shook it lightly, in order to make sure it is still fresh and ready to be used—I’m a bit meticulous in that sense.

Remus and James walked into the classroom, talking about something that would happen in two days or so. I tried my very best not to feel hurt when Remus sat down in his usual seat behind me, and James sat in the chair to my left. Not at my table, but at the one next to mine, leaving a spot open for someone. I could tell he was saving the space, because he pushed up his legs and covered the chair with them, still talking to Remus but not about the same thing. I wrote my name on my parchment, trying to look busy, so that I wouldn’t have to deal with his snooty attitude.

A few minutes passed, class would begin in three or four more. Molly Salvatore walked into the classroom and beamed as James moved his legs in order for her to sit down. I snapped my head in blind reaction, completely and totally shocked. James paid my sudden snap of neck no attention, grinning at Molly and putting an arm around her shoulder briefly. Remus looked just as shocked as I was, his eyes flashing from me to the scene to my left.

I paid absolutely no attention in class, simply glancing to my left every few minutes and thinking about how I could win him back. I had no idea how to. On my parchment for lecture notes, which usually held about three feet of notes per class, there was nothing except the doodle that I’d made just under where I’d written my name. I didn’t know what we’d covered. I doubt that it would matter later, considering I was already a muggle-born. That fact did sometimes make the classes tedious, but I still found it interesting.

It was time to leave, and as soon as Professor Holland dismissed the class, I gathered my belongings and raced out of the classroom. I dodged a ton of students, knocking a fifth year to the floor. I flew by, shouting my apology behind my shoulder.

When I said the password to the fat lady, I started to run in before she’d opened the portrait.

“Hey! You watch it next time, girlie!” She shouted behind me when she paused and then opened the portrait. The fire wasn’t lit in the common room, which I barely noticed as I dashed past the blurry room. I bounded up the stairs and pushed open the door, screaming. Okay, not screaming…

“I quit!” I shouted. Elsie wasn’t there, obviously, because she was probably in Herbology. Mute was sitting on her bed, writing something that I couldn’t see, and Camilla was lying on her side, flipping through a Witch Weekly and popping her Droobles Best Blowing Gum, blue bubbles floating above her head. I grimaced when I realized just how long those were going to take to pop.

“What are you talking about,” Camilla asked with a bored tone, although her eyes were suddenly jumping. Mute stopped writing, pushing her quill atop her parchment and stacking it on her night table, right beside the vial of potion I'd given to her the day before.

“The dare, challenge, experiment, whatever you want to call it,” I seethed. “I’m not participating anymore! So have fun trying to gain an STI by yourselves! I am done with it all!”

They stood at me, eyes wide. Mute pursed her lips and glanced back and forth between Camilla and me. Finally she said, “Are you serious?”

I was tempted to make the pun, but I digressed, and gushed, “Do I look serious?”

“Oh goodness, Lily, what happened?” She sounded concerned, but I doubted that it was geniuine. I mean this meant one less competitor. And Elsie, with Peter barely even looking at her now (his eyes must be burning), it was doubtful that she was still in the game. I’m no seer, but Mute had every good omen in winning.

“Look, he’s moved on! I had him, so completely enthralled with…me, and I just passed it up to let him go to that bimbo Molly. Leave it to me to fail the easiest task in the universe!” I bit my lip and sank onto my bed, the comfortable comforter not enough to comfort my despair. Why was I so dejected about losing…Potter?

Just because we’d shared a drunken kiss meant so little, and I wasn’t even sure if I was completely secure with myself enough to go through with this dare. I mean the other girls were all very beautiful, each in their own way, and I knew I have nice features, but I was still insecure. I mean, I’m only human, and this is a huge step. I never, in my wildest dreams, pictured that I’d be competing to win some whore competition.

I never shared my thoughts with Camilla or Elsie or Mute. I didn’t want to insult them by suggesting what we were doing was way too sleazy for who we are as people. But I was pretty sure if they all weren’t, at least Mute was having the same concerns and doubts that I was.

“Lily…” Camilla sighed, and closed her magazine, popping her gum loudly. “You can’t quit. You signed the contract. I know it seems impossible, but I mean you have way better chances than Elsie, and I’m pretty sure that even though you think James has moved on, he hasn’t. You can’t get over someone that quickly.”

She sounded like she was speaking from experience. I knew she was, but I was still shocked—this was the first time she had referenced, directly or indirectly, the breakup that had occurred between Ken Kroger and her. I felt my heart go out to who she had been before.

I knew in my gut that this whole transformation that she went through was the result of the terrible ordeal that stupid Ken caused. He ripped out her heart and danced with Kendra Rollins atop it. Now she’s just the shell of who she used to be, forcing us to call her Camilla like we did when we were in third year, before everyone called her Millie. I think it hurts her too much, because of Ken and how he was the one who started the nickname in the first place.

“Look, all I know is that he didn’t even look at me once the entire lesson, flirting and touching Molly the whole hour,” I mumbled her name, the taste of it annoying in my mouth.

“Lily, I don’t think you really know how to attract someone.” Camilla told me quickly, as if for once she was taking my feelings into account and as if saying it faster would make it be less hurtful.

“I know a lot about attracting someone, especially Potter.” I said defiantly.

“Prove it.”

“I will!” I shouted and marched out of the dormitory, strutting towards the library with a glint in my eye. People actually jumped out of my way.

“Geeze, Evans, really?” I heard someone shout behind me, but I didn’t turn to see. It wasn’t James and it wasn’t a professor—who cares?

I walked into the library, scanning rows upon rows of books, pulling out any that seemed like they would help. Madame Aphrodite’s True Guide to Love, How to Hook a Wizard, Laws of Attraction According to William Shakespeare’s Nephew’s Son’s Wife.

It wasn’t until I had scattered all my books on the table and opened the first one, hearing the spine creak a bit, that I realized that bitch had used reverse psychology on me.

“Damn.”

“Something wrong, Lily Evans?” James Potter. Oh-My-Merlin!

“Uh…I…uh,” I unrolled my parchment as fast as I could, trying to cover my books. How embarrassing!

“What’s that?” He moved the cover, but I flew out of my seat and covered the book with…myself. He gave me a side glance, muttering how odd this was. “Well, er…I’ll see you later?”

“Uhm, sure.”

He walked around the huge wooden bookshelf, and out of sight. I sighed and laughed a little to myself, uncovering the books and sitting myself back into the uncomfortable wooden chairs.

There was a flash of dark wool and I cursed to myself. James Potter was a dirty rotten little liar, who hid behind bookshelves and jumped out when the covering on top of really embarrassing books was removed in order to humiliate his former fancy.

“Well, well, well, Evans, who are you trying to impress?” His tone was alike to someone who was mocking, but I thought I detected a little jealousy in his voice. His dark, low, beautiful voice…which I am no longer focusing on!

“I uh…er…uh…” I stuttered for a moment. “Remus!”

I said the first name that came to mind, and I immediately regretted it. How could I be so stupid? Mute is going to hate me!

“Re-Remus?” Surprised. He was surprised. Not hurt? Not jealous? Where did the jealousy go?!

“Uh, yeah. He’s really nice, and I know that he and Mute might have…a thing, but I really kind of, maybe, like him. And I uh….well, I wanted to…” I trailed off, putting hand on my forehead and shielding my blushing cheeks and humiliation.

“Oh…” He gave a soft chuckle, taking a seat across from me.

“Well…yeah,” I shrugged, still embarrassed.

“Wow. I really, can honestly say that I didn’t expect that,” He mumbled. I nodded, stacking my books in a neat pile in the corner of the wooden table. “But…I feel  attached to you, and I think that I can help you.”

“Wait, what?”

“I can help you. I think we should take a step towards being closer, being friends. And if to do that, I need to help you date on of my best mates—that sounds really bad—but I’ll do it. I’d do a lot for you, Lily,” He breathed.

I was sure the expression on my face was alike to a deer in the headlights, but I just sat there, not making any motion to change it.

“You want to help me date Remus?” I nearly cried at how pathetic and devastating the chances of my winning now were becoming.

“Yes.”

“Great!” I said, the smile melting off my face within seconds. Just great… 




Wow, thank you to everyone who has continued to review! I really, truly appreciate it! This chapter was intended to be longer, but it's going to have to do. James seemed pretty dull this chapter, I know, but I promise as time goes on, everyone will be more developed and interesting. Please review!
-love-
LilyMaria


Chapter 10: Chapter Ten. Mute.
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I pushed open the door, making it thud against the wall with a resounding slam. I walked through the claustrophobically small corridor, and breathed deeply. I couldn’t let my anger get the best of me, and I knew that, but honestly I was very, very pissed off. I was pretty sure from the way my hair was billowing from the sides of my face that I looked like some kind of psychopath on a rampage. Which, in all honesty, wasn’t far from the truth.

“Mute, slow down,” Camilla mumbled, irritated as I pushed the dormitory door open roughly. As per usual, she was lying on her side, flipping through Witch Weekly, popping Droobles.

“Where is she?” I said evenly. She looked up briefly, her bright eyes looking particularly smashing with the way she heavily lined them with thick black eyeliner. But as quickly as the look came, it went, and her attention was once more focused on the magazine.

“Who?” She asked innocently, but her voice low enough for me to know better.

“You know who, tell me.”

“Vol—oh. That ‘you know who’, gotcha,” She popped her gum and the sound echoed around the room momentarily. If I hadn’t been so astounded that she’d almost actually said his name aloud, I’d have hit her.

“Don’t get smart with me, Millie, tell me,” I spat. The magazine dropped closed, and within an instant she was in front of me, a finger pointed in my direction threateningly.

“Don’t ever call me that, Chickadee, you hear me?”

“Right, anyway,” I said. “Where is Lily?”

“Library with Potter last I heard,” her voice sounded strange, like she was…happy?

I rolled my eyes, muttered a quick ‘thanks’, and left in the same huff that I’d entered in. I raced down the corridors, muttering to myself and laughing at the looks I was receiving. I pushed open the door to the library, spotting a head full of bright red hair instantly.

“Lily,” I said.

She had the nerve to look surprised, like she didn’t expect this. “Mute? Er, hi? What’s going on?”

“I need to talk to you,” my eyes shifted to James for a moment, a lazy expression on his face, drunkenly pleased. I raised an eyebrow in his direction, to which he showed no emotion besides straightening up his posture.

Lily excused herself from the table, and James then slouched once more. Together, Lily and I walked to the corner, out of earshot. I grabbed her arm along the way, tightening my grip just a tad bit in order to demonstrate how angry I was at her. She looked to me out of the corner of her eye, a sad expression on her face.

We reached the far end of the library, and I turned around to glance at the table where she’d occupied. James was still sitting there, eyes shut, head to the table. I turned back to the redhead in question, pursing my lips shut and staring at her with a bemused expression.

She sighed, “Mute…”

“Why would you do this to me?” I snapped.

“I was in a hotspot. I had no idea what to say, and Remus’s name just popped into my head. Mute, I didn’t know that this would happen!” The intensity in her voice, along with the regret was almost overwhelming, but I managed to continue to glare at her.

“What am I supposed to do, Lil?” I sighed. “He is so awkward around me now. I’ve talked with him enough to know that he has this fear of people leaving him, and he thinks that now that I know you like him, I’m going to…”

“I’ll tell James. I’ll quit everything. I promise, I just think that…well this has been helping me with the dare. How about, you tell Remus that it’s not him that I like, I just didn’t want to give James the name?” Her mind was working, that was sure.

“He’ll tell James.”

“Make him promise he won’t!” She snapped quickly. Her head flipped to the side suddenly, and I noticed she was getting anxious being away from James. This was abnormal to me.

People were glancing our way every now and then when one of us would snap. I sighed, checking the large clock on the wall and noting the time.

“Fine, but what if he asks who the real person is?” I said, giving up. Remus was probably waiting for me, checking the time, and fidgeting.

“Er…I dunno. Make it up, and get back to me as soon as you can so our stories match.” She said, dismissing the conversation quickly, and walking briskly back to the table, plopping down on her chair and waking James by nudging his arm a bit. He looked up drowsily, his eyes resting on her hand touching his arm. Lily moved it away quickly, turning her head sharply and saying something that I was too far away to hear. I think I wasn’t the only one to notice the blush on her already rosy cheeks, because James smiled softly to himself before she turned back to him.

I caught her eye and nodded brusquely, turning and walking away. I dashed up to my dorm, grabbing a small translucent vial from my bedside table, which contained the Wolfsbane Potion needed to give Remus a night of ease, halting the painful transformation. I’d tricked potions master Lily into believing that I was going extra credit, needing her help in brewing said potion. I’d watched every move like a hawk, and it also helped that she explained everything thoroughly, sometimes a bit too extensively, and now I knew how to brew the potion myself for Remus.

I trotted to the hill, watching as Remus fidgeted and checked the clock, not noticing me approaching. His head turned and I saw the blank sky reflected oddly in his eyes. The moon hadn’t risen, but I knew it would any moment. I gave him a kiss on the cheek when I met him, and handed him the potion with a shaky hand. He smiled at me sadly, kissing me softly, then motioning that I should leave. I nodded, smiled softly back at him while I walked away backwards. When I fully turned around, I could see the moon creeping slowly over the hill.

Shutting the door behind me, I bumped into Peter Pettigrew. He stumbled and then smiled at me, a gesture which I returned.

“Sorry ‘bout that, Mute,” He said. Then he opened the door and walked outside.

“Peter, I’m not so sure that’s a good idea!” I shouted after him, looking to make sure no one was in the entrance hall.

“Relax, Mute. I’ll be back in a few…minutes,” He called. I sighed, shaking my head. Was it safe for him to be out there? Well, the potion would assist Remus in keeping his human brain while transformed, so either way, I suppose he wouldn’t be hurt.

I walked slowly up the staircase, bumping into a rushing James and a smirking Sirius, whose posture, I noticed, mellowed when I was away from him. I sighed and shook my head, he and Camilla were made for each other…

I walked to the common room and noticed how empty it was. People were probably at supper—that’s most likely why James was in a hurry. The windows gave no light from the moon, the room being lit only by the roaring fire. I sighed, sitting softly on the plush couch. Looking around, I laid my head on the side cushion, ready to begin a long night of waiting for him. 


Sorry for the short chapter. I just wanted to make sure everyone could see the repercussions of what Lily said, and also the relationship of Remus and Mute about five days after the last Mute chapter. Don't worry, more action and intrigue in next chapter! Please review!!
-Love Always-
LilyMaria


Chapter 11: Chapter Eleven. Camilla.
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I was sitting on the ground outside. The sun was in my eyes, but I looked at the lake at a different angle, suppressing the ugly expression that arrived while squinting. Ken Kroger and Kendra Rollins were down by the edge. A blanket on the ground, charmed to not get wet with the snow. I’d cleared a space of snow with my hand, sitting on wet grass that will probably stain my jeans. I grimaced, unintentionally, and looked away from the new couple. Why must they be so happy when I’m…not?

A snap of a twig came from behind me, but I was so involved in cursing Ken with my mind that I didn’t pay heed. Sirius plopped down beside me, like myself he cared little about the condition of his pants in reference to the wet ground. I mumbled a hello, and he said something.

I didn’t hear it. I was too busy letting out a huff of air, glaring at stupid Kendra Rollins, whose name is not simply Kendra, or even Kendra R., but it has to be pronounced together. How eccentric do you have to be?!

Suddenly Sirius’s voice cut into my thoughts, “It’s a lot clearer now. Tell me, is it hard?”

“Is what hard?” I asked, obviously confused. He gave a small, gentle smile.

“Holding onto the past?”

“And what exactly does that mean?” I flared. He grinned in an innocent found guilty kind of way. It made me remotely suspicious.

“I know you’ve been lying to me.”

I let my eyes widen. Uh-oh. “What do you mean?”

“Camilla,” I nodded. “I know that you have some kind of attachment to Ken Kroger. All right? I know you have issues.”

Crap. Rule number one of snagging Sirius Black—broken.

“I don’t have many. I mean, everyone has some, Sirius,” I added his name out of impulse. Genuinely the more you look at someone in the eye or say their name while talking, it shows that you like them, and it tricks their brain into liking you…or so I’ve heard.

My throat tightened, and I found it a bit hard to concentrate.

“It’s okay. I just thought you should know that whatever you did before we began our relationship…because that what’s we have right, a relationship? Well, before this,” His hand enveloped mine and he held it up for me to see our fingers intertwined. “Before this, nothing else matters.”

I looked at him so seriously, my eyes wide. Was this guy for real?
“You can’t be serious?”

“I am,” he, Merlin charm him, ignored the pun, moving on. “Camilla, I don’t know how you did it, but you’re just so…I really like you. Will you…be my girlfriend?”

If relationships were Christianity, I’d be the anti-Christ. I smiled at him, nodding and acting like I was extremely excited about the prospect of having a boyfriend, a sick, lost puppy that follows me around. The worst part is that this made me the tiniest bit happy, but rest assured it was simply in alliance with my desires to win the dare.

Sirius gripped onto my hand, pulling in for a quick kiss, which turned into a long kiss. I pushed him away, continuing with my nice-girl routine. He opened his eyes, smiling lazily into my eyes. The dark gray eyes staring into mine had dark circles encasing them. I would have asked about them, but I just figured he’d been out with some other girl.

Did that bother me? I felt a pang of jealousy, sure, but I thought that I’d promised not to get remotely attached to Sirius. He was a womanizer, and I was about to deceive him, trick him, seduce him, and leave him. I was going to get revenge on him and all the other womanizers who lie to girls until they get what they want, and then ruin my life, I mean the girls’ lives.

Then it clicked. As fast as it was for me to conjure up the dare, it was easier to piece it all together in my mind. I wasn’t afraid of Sirius; I wasn’t angry or resentful towards him. I liked Sirius. I liked him a lot, but I was doing this to get back at the arrogant bitch Ken. And I was being such a bitch to him by playing with his heart. This isn’t me.

I jerked my hand away from Sirius. My face surely displaying everything I was feeling. So I did the only thing that makes sense to me when it comes to problems—I ran.

“Camilla?” Sirius yelled after me. Ken and Kendra Rollins looked up, noticing me for the first time. My cheeks flushed, but I didn’t turn around again for them to see, I just ran into the castle and up several flights of stairs.

I said the password to the fat lady, rushed through the common room, and into our dormitory. I panted and rested upon my four poster bed. Elsie was laying in bed still, snoring softly, but now looking like she wanted to wake up anytime soon. Mute was tying her shoes on and getting ready to leave, ignoring me like I usually ignore her, and Lily was gone.

Probably with James. Whatever. Just because she’s having good luck with him, and Mute’s having really good luck with Remus—it doesn’t mean anything. Because I will still win. I just have to come up my a different strategy. A better one. 

Hi everyone! *hides behind something* Here's chapter eleven... I uh hope you liked it! I'm sorry for the lack of action, and I know I promised you better last author's note, but I didn't have anything except this, because I need to get to Lily's chapter fast, for reasons I can't disclose *wink double wink* But I really hope that you review! I love reviews! I finally got to 100! (that's why I updated. lol)
-love-
LilyMaria


Chapter 12: Chapter Twelve. Elsie.
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I walked down the hallway into the fifth floor corridor where Peter had promised to meet and talk to me. I skipped along, taking extra care not to make too much noise, as it was later, just half an hour before curfew. I swung open the large wooden door and stepped inside the old charms classroom that they use for dueling practice now. Unfortunately, with limited candles and the dark hour, I could scarcely view what was three feet from my own face.

“Elsie, close the door,” a voice told me. I obliged, feeling rather giddy and light-headed. Peter emerged from the shadows; the small candle sitting atop an old wooden desk provided an eerie glow to his features. I sighed, feeling my heart seemingly combust. I walked away from the door, looking behind my shoulder and sighing.

“Peter, can I just say, before you cut in, that I am so sorry. I mean, blimey, had I known what I was doing, I wouldn’t have,” Peter cut me off.

“Elsie, you liked me, and I ignored you. I thought I liked your sister, because you guys look so much alike, and I’m a plonker when it comes to names, honestly. I was so cruel to you, and you’re apologizing?” He laughed to himself. “You’re amazing.”

“I don’t believe this…” I looked down. I sighed and looked around myself, completely surprised to view my surroundings. It seemed old and worn, but the classroom was remarkably cozy and comfortable. “Wait, how did you know I liked you?”

“A long story,” he grinned. I smiled to myself softly when I saw how crooked his teeth were. His hair was longer than most boys wore it, but if I could just touch, I would imagine it to be smooth and soft. His bright blue eyes, which had hints of both green and yellow in them, seemed to sparkle even more than usual in the dull glow of the candle. How could I be so lucky to have found someone who was so alike to me, and yet so wonderfully different?

“I have time,” I mumbled. He nodded, sitting on an old desk.

“Well, as you probably know, Lily and James are spending a ton of time together, even though Prongs won’t tell us why,” he mumbled the last part, and I smiled because I knew why. “But, she sort of let it slip that you er…liked me a bit, and that you don’t deal well with, as she put it, ‘stressful situations’,” he said it with quotations marks. “And well…that’s why you kind of, you know, took your top off.”

“Oh, Peter,” I cried. “I am so sorry.”

“You don’t need to apologize; Merlin knows I didn’t mind,” he laughed, to which I joined in, extremely abashed. “So what do you say, friends?”

“Friends,” I smiled sadly. He held out his hand for me to shake. I looked at it despondently.

“Forget that.” I pulled his hand forward and pressed my lips to his, to which he responded rather enthusiastically. 


Holy Mother of Pearl!!! How short is this chapter?!?! Don't you just want to smack the author for making you wait, I know I do! Haha, but seriously, I warned that eleven and twelve would be short, and I came through, no? Well I promise that you will definitely not be disappointed with chapter 13!!!! I'm thinking about 3800 words...
-love-
LilyMaria



Preview of chapter 13: 
"That's not how you kiss someone," He breathed. I sighed, my cheeks flaring a bright red, my eyes cast downward. "Go slowly...enjoy it."

Chapter 13: Chapter Thirteen. Lily.
  [Printer Friendly Version of This Chapter]

My feet carried me to sit across from the lake. Not three days before I had been here, reduced to sighs and silent screams of frustration. The lessons were just getting frivolous now. I mean, honestly, do I have to learn how to flirt, hug, kiss, walk, stand, talk, fly, and be able to talk about any subject that could possibly interest the male—who James now knows isn’t Remus, but is completely oblivious to the fact that it’s him—in question? Answer is no. Although, I must admit I am looking forward to the kissing and flirting lessons. So far it’s been books, books, and more books.

At the moment, I know how to polish a broom, why divination class is considered a sleeping drought, which teams are going to the Quidditch World Cup, and who won the last six cups—seven if you count the previous year’s Wimbourne Wasps victory, which James says I shouldn’t because, and I quote, ‘they have weak chasers who merely sit on their bloody brooms till the cows come home, griping about how much their beaters suck, while not even bothering to score, and simply letting their seeker do all the bleedin’ work’. I’m now fluent in the masculine ways of the world.

And what’s really pathetic is that this is probably the worst and best times of my year thus far. I’ve been drilled constantly about quidditch, a sport that I’ve never admired nor cared for at all, I’ve been put through vigorous physical training, going around the pitch at least twenty times a day, and I’ve had to endure three hours of the last Cup being replayed upon a huge white projector screen. How it is even remotely considered the best? I’ve gotten to know James a lot better.

He’s truly an individual regardless of his obligation to the lot of them. He is so loyal to Sirius and the other two that he would take an unforgivable for them. And he enjoys reading his books, regardless of length, at least three times to ensure that the information has sank in. The kid is deep.

I sighed and hummed a little as the air came out of my mouth, billowing with the wind that came in a huge gust, blowing my hair every which way. I heard the crunch of leaves to my right, and smiled. Here he comes, I thought.

I ignored the urge to turn to him, instead allowing him to sneak up on me like he wanted to. I caught quickly a glimpse of Camilla suddenly bolting away from where she and Sirius had been sitting. It confused me, how hurt she looked. I doubt she even noticed I was here.

A sudden hand on my shoulder actually did alarm me, as I’d been completely distracted from his presence. I gave a small scream, completely unplanned, and turned around quickly. His face was bright and smiling. He had the tiniest of pimples upon his nose, which I didn’t doubt would be gone by tomorrow, as that’s how we handle skin problems. James’s glasses were askew, crooked and barely resting on the bridge of his slightly long nose. I sighed to myself, amazed that I’d developed even the slightest of feelings for him.

It didn’t affect the dare though. No one had won yet, although according to Elsie, she and Peter came very close last night. Yeah right, little Pete?

Don’t get me wrong, I wish her the very best of luck, but I have to be honest and say that I don’t at all anticipate for her to win. Not that I’m saying that I will, I think that I won’t actually.

“Hey,” He elongated the word. I smiled back at him. “How are you?”

“I’m decent, thanks,” I told him.

He cleared his throat and popped something into his mouth. “So, I think we should try the flirting and kissing today. You know, get it over with.”

His confidence astounded me. I cleared my own throat, feeling my mouth get very wet all of a sudden. Gross, what if I had a ton of saliva in my mouth when he tried to kiss me? Oh Merlin, please don’t let it happen!

I looked into his eyes for a very long moment that seemed to stretch like a rubber band before snapping and pulling me back into reality. He wanted to kiss me, and flirt with me, and I had to seduce him. Why did this all seem so important right now?

“Whatever you think is best, professor,” I mocked him, to which he gave a small chuckle of approval. He moved closer.

“Let’s see where your level is,” He muttered before cupping my face with his hand. I inched closer to him, licked my lips, and then swallowed, feeling my throat suddenly all too dry. He leaned in closer, making me suck in a sharp breath. He whispered seductively, “Relax.”

I exhaled just before our lips met. The kiss was familiar, and I was reminded with drunken memories of the night just a few weeks prior to this moment. Our lips overlapped, and I wanted to show just how well I knew how to snog, so I pressed against his lips, moving against them rapidly. He broke the kiss and licked his lips. He tasted like a sweet candy with a tad bit of something unidentifiable.

“Okay, how about we move onto flirtation, and double back. By that time, perhaps it will work out on its own?” His voice sounded reproachful. Had I done something wrong? Perhaps been too hasty? I knew that putting that much pressure upon him would drive him away. Am I really sober, because I could have sworn that the drunk kiss was better?

“So, how is this flirtation that you hint at?” I was sarcastic without a purpose, so rather imbecilic, in my opinion. He grinned and caught a strand of my currently wavy red hair in his fingers while some other strands danced in the breeze. He inched closer, acting like he was examining the hair, which kind of disturbed me, except for the fact that I was getting goose-bumps from his proximity.
“How is it or what is it, Evans?” He smirked. I felt my cheeks become florid, and I tried to hide my face a bit.

“You know what I mean,” I blushed.

“Nah, basically we’re just going to ensure that this,” he pointed to my increasingly red cheeks, “doesn’t happen every time you attempt to conversate with a guy.”

“Conversate is not a word, Potter, the actual word is converse.”

“Yes, yes, that’s all well, but do you actually understand what I’m talking about? I mean, personally, I find the whole rosy cheek thing endearing, but some blokes find it a bit too…I don’t know. But the point is, since I know it’s not Remus, I don’t know which fish we’re trying to catch, so we’ll just have to meet standards.”

I wanted to tell him that the guy, or fish, I was attempting to catch was one who thought the ‘whole rosy cheek thing’ was ‘endearing’. I wanted to let him know just how pointless this whole thing was. But I couldn’t.

“How are things with that Hufflepuff you’ve been seeing?” I asked, attempting to make conversation with him. He’d been talking about Chelsea since before we’d started this silly project, but I had the feeling she was just a replacement for me. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not conceited, but she has dull red hair and blue eyes, she laughs the same way I do, and she refuses him just a little less than I did.

“Chelsea?” He remarked as though he didn’t really care all that much. I nodded with mock interest, amused and curious, but on the inside regretful and jealous. “She’s adequate. I’m not speaking to her much these days.”

“Oh, I’m sorry,” I feigned sympathy.

“No, it’s fine, I s’pose. We didn’t get on as well as I’d figured we would,” he sighed and shifted his weight, laying down on the grass, even though it was covered with frost from the night prior and really wet.

“So, about the lesson. Are we going to get to it?” He laughed at me softly, leaning on his elbow as he sat up, and looked at me. James nodded, and I scooted over a bit.

“Firstly, let’s just skip the flirtation. I think that whoever you’re trying to impress probably already fancies you, so the blushing like wild won’t matter. Kissing is the difficulty.”

“Great,” I mumbled, irony seeping through my tone.

“What experience do you have?”

“Well, basically two muggle blokes I met at my sister’s engagement party, and you.” He looked unsure of me, which is confusing in itself.

I remember kissing the other two blokes better than I remember James and my first kiss. For obvious reasons, I’d omitted the fact that the bride was my sister while at the wedding, considering I hadn’t been maid honor, or even a bridesmaid. The first was named Rusty, and he was very sophisticated, probably aged in his mid-twenties. His face had golden stubble and his grin was sideways.

Rusty had come over to me, cheap alcohol floating in his breath. He had gripped my wrist and just pulled me in. My first kiss was a drunk who gave me no choice in the matter. But I didn’t mind. It was surprising, sure, but it was only a year ago, and I was relieved to get it over with. No one wants to kiss a lip virgin, or at least that’s what Camilla had told me not a week before the ceremony.

After Rusty puked mere inches in front of my open toed shoes, I grimaced and walked away. Of course, I walked into the arms of Galen Alexander, Vernon’s second cousin twice removed, literally. He wrapped his arms around me, his form excellently slim, yet firm. Rather fit, if I do say so myself. He asked me if I was all right, which resulted in me confessing all this hatred for the bride, to which he responded with his own contempt for the groom. I’d never thought that a conversation about hatred could drive two people to snog, but weirder things have happened. Like the dare, for instance.

James nodded, his eyes squinting in the noon sun. I sighed and wondered when this would be over, and whether or not I was making any progress.

“Well, let’s just go back to it then,” he said, grabbing my shoulder rougher than he had before.

“What,” I began, but was cut off. He swallowed another piece of toffee, which I hadn’t even realized that he had been holding. He pulled me to him, as I said, rougher than the first kiss. His lips moved over mine, and I responded very quickly. He cut it.

“Whoa, all right then, er, how ‘bout we just…how ‘bout you just not do anything and I’ll kiss you?” I nodded—my mood and self-esteem fluctuating lower and lower. He leveled his face to mine, looked in my eyes, and gave a soft smile to encourage me. Then he pulled me to him. I stayed motionless, as he told me to do. His lips moved over mine softly, slowly. It felt kind of strange with me not kissing back at all, but I let him have the moment, and then decided that it was enough.

I overlapped his lips with my own, moving at the same pace. He seemed to smile satisfactory in the kiss, and we kept going. I inhaled from my nose, taking extra care not to make too big of a noise. He seemed to appreciate it or something, because in a moment he did the same. We sat there; his hands cupping my face and shoulder, my hands stupidly place at my sides, twiddling with the grass between my fingertips.

We finally part, panting ever so lightly. I felt very good, and my lips felt a bit…swollen? No other word seemed to encapsulate such a feeling. I rubbed them together and let my tongue dart out a bit to wet them, knowing another kiss was coming soon.

“You’re getting there, Evans,” I nodded to him. This time, I place my hands on his neck and guided him towards me slowly, smiling slightly. He chuckled just before our lips met. I don’t know why, but I moved with the faster pace again, cursing myself for the lack of concentration.

"That's not how you kiss someone," He breathed. I sighed, my cheeks flaring a bright red, my eyes cast downward. "Go slowly...enjoy it."

I smiled a little and nod, muttering an apology.

“Don’t be sorry, Evans, I understand that you probably don’t have that much experience,” He cleared his throat and leaned forward, but I hung back.

“What’s that insinuating?” I asked, my tone halfway to angry. He cleared his throat again, sighing, and running a calloused hand through his dark brown hair.

“Nothing, I just guessed, sorry,” He stuttered, and leaned in again. I rolled my eyes. “All right, Evans, one more round.”

“Call me Lily,” I whispered as we leaned in towards each other. The sun was in the highest point by now, and many people were in the Great Hall eating their lunches. I was enjoying James.

We connected and I sighed into the kiss, something I probably wouldn’t have done with anyone who I hadn’t kissed at least three times already. James put a hand to my chin, supporting it, or acting like he was. Then his hand traveled lower, and I felt it on my shoulder. Then it was on my back, just resting where my bra was, as he used the touch to pull himself towards me more.

A noise went in the air that was a low squeak. I grimaced slightly when I realized that it was me who had made it. Then he kissed me again, and I wasn’t as angry, as now I had justified cause. He scooted closer so that we were even closer. I felt us going horizontal, my brain on overdrive, and his hands on my lower back. I worried for a moment whether someone was watching, but as his tongue grazed my lip I let the thoughts disappear. My lower half burned with some kind of emotion and I felt myself give out the soft, low squeak once more.

James responded with his own sound, a sort of guttural noise that made my stomach explode with pressure and butterflies. His tongue danced inside my mouth, grazing over my teeth and gently massaging my own. It was ecstasy.

Then he was on top of me, his hands everywhere, and his hips pushing forward, grinding slowly against my own. We swayed a bit before I let my arms fall and we were on the ground, his body covering my own. It was a sudden shift and caused me to let out the air I’d been saving. I cursed mentally, pushing him away to breathe. His mouth trailed to my jaw and neck, where he started sucking gently. I giggled and swatted at his arm, but couldn’t deny how sweet and sensual this moment was.

He chuckled against my throat when he heard my giggle, and then softly whispered in my ear, “Enjoy it.”

I shivered, my heart turning to mush, my body limp and relaxed under his seemingly expert touch, though I knew he’d only had two serious girlfriends. His hand got tangled up in my red hair, and I could feel the other resting lazily upon my hip. After he seemed satisfied with nibbling and kissing my neck, his face came up again, looking into my own. His eyes were a dark brown, no longer the light hazel, seemingly filled and coated with some dark emotion. His lips resembled how swollen my felt, and I smiled as he leaned in once more to capture my lips again.

We probably looked a bit silly, on the ground snogging with our bodies totally connected, our minds only on the main objective our lower halves was pleading for. I moaned again, embarrassed, but comfortable enough with it, as it seemed to edge him on. He continued to kiss me, to ravish my mouth with his own.

“We have to stop,” I whispered as he continued his ministrations regarding my jaw and neck. I heard him groan and wanted to keep going, to make him make that unearthly, remarkably pleasing sound. But I knew we looked like a pair of rowdy, hormone-driven students who can’t be trusted with the privilege of being unsupervised outdoors. He nodded and gave me one last peck on the cheek before rolling onto his side and sighing.

Without all the weight of his body, mine felt very empty, much too small to be trusted by it. I missed the sensation that his weight set coursing through me. I missed having him near me. I sighed at my own pathetic whisperings. He let out a sigh as well, breathing, his chest going up and down in a steady rhythm that I watched for about thirty seconds as it rose and fell, before finally he turned to me, his eyes calculating and curious. I shrugged for no apparent reason and then sat straight up, slowly. He followed suit and together we watched a few birds fly over the lake as the sun glared down upon our skin, his rather tan while mine was very fair and easily burnt. I swallowed, realizing that my throat was dry.

“Shall we go in for some water?” I asked, clearing my throat quickly before speaking. My voice sounded a bit weak, but he chuckled and nodded, the expression on his face portraying that I’d ‘read his mind’. As we began walking to the castle, going up the hill, his cheeks grew extremely flushed and he seemed very uncomfortable. As I began to wonder whether or not I should talk to him, we entered the courtyard.

The fountain was still going, as always, spurting water from the birds and angel situation upon the stone. James looked at it and grunted, picking up his pace.

“I’m just going to go up to my dorm rather quick though, if you don’t mind,” he mumbled and sprinted away from me when we’d reached the entrance hall. I watched him run away towards the grand staircase, barely catching one before it began to move and shift. His run was a little awkward, like he had ants in his pants, but I didn’t think too much about it.

I walked into the great hall just in time to see Elsie getting her ear whispered into by Peter. He seemed very happy that she giggled, smiling to himself like he couldn’t believe his luck. It was one of those moments that you witness and know that something special has occurred, but I knew it wasn’t the something special, because Elsie didn’t look up smugly when I passed. She simply looked up and found my eyes, smiling softly before returning to Peter.

Mute and Remus were snogging lightly at the very end of the table, much to the dismay of the professors, who sat there and watched (some of them) for a few moments before turning away and shaking their heads. Students all around me buzzed and whispered, smiled and ran to the other side of the table to see their friends and stuffed their faces with the delicious food provided on this day by the house elves. All was well.

James walked in ten minutes after I had found a seat next to Trisha, away from the snoggers and the giggling duo. Camilla and Sirius weren’t here, but I knew they wouldn’t have been together, simply because of the way Sirius’s face looked hurt when Camilla ran away earlier. I sighed, feeling actually pity and sympathy for the bloke.

James walked down the opposite side of the table, sitting directly across from me. Molly and Trisha greeted him, but surprisingly didn’t actually try to direct his attention elsewhere for the first time in a long time. In fact, Molly even looked a bit miffed.

“Lily,” He greeted. I relished the way he said my name, knowing that when he did I turned to absolute putty in his hands. Whether this was good or bad was immaterial.

“James,” He smiled when he heard my voice. I returned the smile, taking a bit of a cucumber sandwich.

“So, when should we continue?” Trisha, I saw, looked in James’s direction when he said this, and it made me the taddest bit worried that the meaning behind James’s words would be taken seriously, which in all honesty, it should be. We were planning to meet up and snog, but the whole school inferring that, regardless of the truth behind the inference, was just embarrassing.

“Later. I’ll meet you in the common room,” I told him. I had to accomplish a few personal matters, such as talking with Mute in attempts to make peace, and also to complete a few assignments from both transfiguration and arithmancy that I’d been neglecting.

“Sounds great,” He chuckled, digging into his own lunch, gulping down pumpkin juice.

The hours passed slowly as I tried to focus on my schoolwork, only to be constantly distracted by the roaring thunder known as chatter in the common room. The next quidditch game was coming, an opportunity, James said, for me to impress the certain someone with my knowledge of what’s happening during the game. I held back, of course, the information that the ‘certain someone’ would be on his broom during the game.

I walked over to the staircase that led me up to the girls’ dormitory. I sighed, weighing my options, deliberating within my mind on the point of attack, the surest way to victory with Mute. Finally, I swallowed my pride and made my way up the stairs.

“Mute?” I called.

“Yeah?” She said excitedly.

“Wow, you’re excited!”

“I think tonight’s the night, Lily!”

What?! No! It couldn’t be. Well, at least now she wouldn't be mad at me anymore. This meant I had to step up my game though. If she was going to do it, then I would have to first.

James and I had gone far on the grass, imagine how far we’d go if no one could see us? If we didn’t have any weird limitations? My throat went dry, and I had to face up to the fact. I was going to give myself away like a cheap floozy to James Potter to win a dare. But the bragging rights would be worth it in the end. Hopefully.

Would they?

I smiled at Mute, asking a few generic questions, such as what she was wearing, where they would go, and a few personal questions. I went over to my dresser and took out the contraceptive potion I’d made when we had signed the contact. It had taken a while, and I had to steal the ingredients in order for dear Slughorn not to find out, but in the end it would definitely be worth the risk. They prevent pregnancy and contracting any sort of STI.

I handed her a vial, managing even in my rage of jealousy and fit of emotion, to try and be a good friend and watch out for her. She took it, smiling, and then excused herself to go brush her hair and get ready. I used this as my escape cue. The sound of her brushing her teeth was my escape music, to which I bounced around the dorm and gathered everything I would need—only the potion and my wand—and I changed into a loose fitting outfit that still hugged me generously.

I raced down the staircase and appropriately into James’s arms. He was sitting on the back of the couch, his legs firmly planted on the floor, and his attention focused on Sirius, who was telling him about the newest addition to the Hufflepuff team, the alternate, Chelsea. James chuckled, not affected in the least bit. I smiled at his demeanor.

When he saw my fly down the staircase, he turned and grinned. “Time?”

“Yeah, I need you, really important, let’s go.”

His countenance immediately shifted, enjoyment replaced with distress. “Are you alright?”

“I’m fine, really. Now stop badgering me, and simply follow.” I pulled him towards the staircase leading to the dorms. Then he opened his dormitory door, the large frame creaking when we entered.

I looked around, studying the appearance of the seventh year boys’ dormitory. It wasn’t at all different from the girls’, excluding the posters of celebrity men and the excessive amounts of makeup scattered over surfaces. I turned around to face him.

He had been studying me, his eyes fixed upon me like one scrutinizing an ant farm. I gave a small smile, clearing my throat, and beginning to speak. “So I just…er…found out that my someone…has loads of experience. I’m kind of…lacking in that department, if you catch my drift.”

I began to continue, but he interrupted, “Wait, Evans, please don’t even suggest it.”

“James, please,” I begged, using to sleaziest tone I could muster. Degrading myself had never felt like this, like it was all right. I shuddered and began thinking of ways to seduce him.

“Lily…I would love to, really, I would. But you’re not ready for that, and you don’t want me to, I know that. And deep in your heart, I know that you want your first time to be something memorable. You just started to really snog today, I mean, that’s a big step, Lil,” he stopped.

“James.”

“Lily, if he loves you, he’ll understand.”

“I know. But I want to be with him,” I sighed, laying my hand to my forehead. I sat down on the bed closest to me and put my wand next to me, the feeling of it in my pocket entirely awkward.

James looked agonized, and it was then that I felt horrible for the lessons. He was helping me date another guy, when it was apparent that he still had feelings for me. I looked down, my eyes almost brimming with tears, but I refused to let it make me cry.

“Lily. I can’t help you be with some other guy. I won’t.”

“But James, I know that deep down he wants me to be with you,” I said it. Then my mind screamed at me. It was the most disturbing comment I could have possibly made, and his face showed my concern.

“What?” He stuttered and gaped like a fish out of water, his mind flopping around on the deck for the right words. He looked to the ground, “Lily, how…what does that even mean? Why would he want you to sleep with me?”

“Because I learned quidditch rules, scores, teams, players. I learned so many frivolous facts about stupid sports. I didn’t need to learn how to flirt for him, because the whole rosy cheek thing is endearing.”

“And this relates to me…?”

“Because it’s you, James!” I shouted. His eyes flew up, wide. “It’s always been you, I just couldn’t let you know. And I want to be…with you.”

He lunged forward and strangely for a moment I thought he might strike me. It was better. His lips came crashing down on mine, and we fell backward onto the comforter that was messily scattered towards the bottom of the bed. I responded with enthusiasm, moving my lips over his at his pace, making sure not to kiss with too much force, but all the while keeping the intensity behind it.

Together we flipped a little so that he was on top of me, and together we pushed ourselves up more onto the bed so that our legs weren’t hanging out the edge. We moved over each other, touching and kissing. 



 Wow. This is the longest chapter I've ever written! I really hope you liked it! It took three days to write, but I think it's worth it, and I know I said 3800 words, but it went over 4,000. Lol. I know, I know, you're all very angry about that...

PLEASE leave a review, especially for this chapter, as I would greatly appreciate your feedback. Best wishes!
-love-
LilyMaria


 

Chapter 14: Chapter Fourteen. Mute.
  [Printer Friendly Version of This Chapter]

I leaned my head on his shoulder, my eyes watching the dancing flames, my heart thumping in my head. There was a rush to this slow moment, and I couldn’t figure out why. Maybe it was the dare, but maybe it was just…me?

Of course, Elsie was commenting that she and Peter would probably conclude the premise of the contract we all signed around tonight or within the week. Perhaps it was bragging or bluffing, meaning Elsie was actually being remotely practical and using strategy—a thought that not only confused me, but downright sent terrified shivers down my spine. So perhaps I just fall victim to mind tricks more easily than say…Lily?

She’s been putting subtle hints out there to Potter, but he’s acting like he doesn’t really get it right now. A fact, which, knowing him, means that he totally has suspicions but is actually being polite by not mentioning them. I feel for the kid, I mean, Lily is a tough cookie to crumble, and I just want them to finally get together. Of course these friendship ties are intensely cutting into my obligations with the dare, which I have to win. I have to.

But I saw them by the lake today, snogging shamelessly on the wet grass, in plain view of the failing Camilla. It might make me a very bad friend, but I honestly am glad that Sirius is putting Camilla in her place, even if he doesn’t know he’s doing it. Simply by being with her, he’s throwing her normally perfectly orchestrated plans into this chaotic vortex; it’s driving her mad.

I turned my head slowly and saw the fire reflected in Remus’s eyes. It was oddly relaxing, despite the devilish appearance. I gave him a kiss and then put my head back on his shoulder. I know what you’re thinking, it’s probably late at night, most students have gone to bed, and there is just a gentle crackling of the fire to be heard, right? Wrong. This moment is being interrupted by Mimi, who claims she’s very supportive of our new relationship and that she practically set us up, rambling on and on about how she shouldn’t be failing transfiguration. Then there are the Sage twins, who keep laughing hysterically despite owning talking with each other and probably not even saying anything funny…

It was around seven. My eyes were getting sore from looking into the fire, and I knew if I didn’t stop I would probably damage them for good. But in this world, they probably have remedies for such predicaments. Remus had his arm around my shoulder, his thumb rubbing my arm when his hand was sitting. I could feel his breath coming in and out onto the top of my head, and I badly wanted to snog him, but I knew he would consider it much too inappropriate in such a public area.

He looked down at me again, this time surprising me. His gaze flickered quickly to the portrait hole, to which I smiled.

“Five minutes?” He asked. I nodded and bolted all the way upstairs into my dorm.

If you’re ever in doubt as to whether or not you are out of shape, simply run full speed up a narrow staircase and into a dorm and begin to get ready like I did. My breathing was coming quickly, in short breaths. I sighed, placing a hand on the bedpost in order to steady myself, exhaling. I imagined what Remus and I would do.

Oh my gosh. We’ve been dating for two weeks, this is definitely the night! I bounced into the lavatory, taking a look at myself in the mirror. I heard someone enter the dorm, and immediately tried to slow my pace, as not to attract suspicion. Remus dislikes attention. I know that we snog at dinner a lot, but he really thinks that if people pay more attention to him, they’ll eventually figure out his secret. The werewolf thing. Which, I must say I think does affect his human form, if you catch my drift.

“Mute?” Oh my god, Lily. Crap, what could I do? I bounced out of the washroom and pretended to dust off my clothes a bit.

“Yeah?” The excitement in my voice couldn’t be masked. I decided then to play with her mind a bit.

“Wow, you’re excited!”

I couldn’t keep it in any longer, “I think tonight’s the night, Lily!”

“Really?” No, I just told you that to screw with you, what do you think!? “That’s so awesome, Mute!”

“Thanks,” I mumbled, shifting my position. She asked me a few questions, like what I was going to wear and where we were going to actually go. The truth was, I had no idea. I mean, I figured I would just wear what I was wearing…

She went to her wardrobe and grabbed a contraceptive potion. I smiled very wide, feeling amused that I was finally using the potion that I’d been staring at every morning for the past few weeks.

I excused myself after a moment of light conversation, the five minutes that Remus gave me seemingly like a remarkably short amount of time now. I rushed into the washroom, brushing my teeth quickly. When I walked out again, Lily was gone. I looked over at the wooden wardrobe in the corner where she’d grabbed the vial. Out of the four that were usually placed there, two were missing. I had one in my hand.

Fuck.

I sighed, moseying down the staircase, a definitive skip in my step. Remus was waiting by the portrait hole, looking as handsome as I’d ever seen him. I sighed, staying in place for a brief moment as I observed him. His gaze was at the floor, making it easy to blatantly stare without getting embarrassed. All of a sudden, as if he sensed me watching, his eyes flickered up to meet mine.

We gazed at one another for about a minute, both smiling widely. I pushed the vial into my pocket quickly, humiliated to even have it in possession. I should have taken it upstairs, but I didn’t want to jinx the evening. I walked forward, and Remus grabbed my hand gently. We sauntered in step through the narrow portrait hole and then hurried to catch a moving staircase that, just as I’d guessed, led to the astronomy tower.

Unbalanced and fidgeting, we stumbled into the room, the huge window illuminating the room with the moonlight radiating from outside. I shivered, knowing that unlike the rest of the school, the astronomy tower was made to be remarkably cold.

“So…” Remus sighed, taking my other hand in his too. I giggled despite repeatedly telling myself mentally not to. His smile grew just a little wider, giving a devilish appearance. I didn’t mind one bit.

His lips came to mine like magnets, just as my hands immediately were softly caressing the back of his neck, playing gently with his hair. I admit, when he gave grunted, I was startled, and thought that this was a totally different person, but we continued to snog with just as much intensity.

We stumbled onto the couch that we had our first kiss on, both touching each other. His hips, more narrow than my own, pushed a bit into mine, making me gasp. A sound emitted from his throat that I hadn’t realized could have possibly been formed. His hips pushed mine again, and this time I literally made my own unnatural sound.

His hand went from my cheek, to my shoulder. As we slowly tumbled down, horizontal, his hand slipped to my hip, making me completely locked in place. I didn’t mind. His lips moved away from mine, forming small kisses on my jaw and neck.

“Remus,” I sighed. He continued, the sound of his name seemingly edging him on. His other hand, apparently more adventurous than the other, slipped into my shirt, and I gasped. It was cold. He moved it up until he was touching my chest. The soft kisses on my jaw stopped. Silence took over. We were completely motionless.

His lips ravaged my own, moving and moving. I didn’t expect it. Suddenly Remus was everywhere. His hand was sliding over my bra, not making skin contact yet, but arousing certain senses regardless while the other hand was gripping my hip. He marched forward, his weight ramming into me, more fiercely than before.

“Mute…” he groaned. I nodded, placing another kiss on his lips. I took one hand away from his shoulders and slid it downward. His breathing hitched as it reached his waist. I continued, sliding it lower, and he growled. Literally growled.

“You don’t…can’t understand…” he wasn’t making any sense, but it didn’t matter. I placed my hand delicately on the waistband of the muggle jeans he was wearing. I exhaled, my breath coming out on his shoulder. “Mute.”

“I’m right here.”

“Oh, I know,” He laughed, but stopped immediately as I attempted to unbutton his trousers. His lips came crashing down, like he needed to immediately thank me for some amazing favor. Another growl came out of his throat and I was surprised by how much it both frightened me and aroused me at the same time.

“Mmm…” I breathed. He shook his head.

Then it stopped.

Before I could count to two, Remus was on the other end of the couch, his hand far away from my chest, and my hand not unbuttoning his jeans.

“Mute, I can’t.”

“No, Remus, it’s all right…” I stopped trying to undo his clothing, instead undoing my own. I unfastened a button on my own shirt, then another. Remus’s eyes, usually so light and comforting, flew to my hands. They were darker than normal, but lightening by the second.

“Mute, stop.” He let out a small grunt, the sound seeming very uncomfortable.

“Why?”

“Because if you don’t, then I won’t be able to. I’ve never had this happen before, so I didn’t know. But now, I can tell. My…condition won’t allow for this to happen.”

Fuck.

“No, no, why not? I mean, don’t get me wrong, please, I understand, but I just don’t see why?” I tried to sound supportive, but my disappointment was palpable.

“If told you if I get really angry, my intensity from the whole…werewolf thing comes in. I can’t control it; I just go into this huge rage, like an animal. Well, that rage, that intensity, it’s here. I couldn’t keep going; I’d hurt you, or just be completely disrespectful.”

“I don’t mind?” I made a joke out the sentence, and he gave a small smile which didn’t help me. “So…we can’t?”

“Not now. I don’t trust myself.”

“I trust you.”

“I know, that’s what scares me,” he was closer to me now, and he placed a delicate kiss on my forehead. I sighed, being pulled contently into his arms. Cuddling was all right for now, but if whoever had that vial succeeded tonight, I was done for.

“Tonight is not the night,” I mumbled to myself. He put his arms protectively around me, and rubbed my shoulder with his thumb.

“Another night. Soon.” He didn’t sound very confident… 



In the meantime stay classy HPFF.
-love-
LilyMaria

Reviewer Question: Who do you think is going to win?


Chapter 15: Chapter Fifteen. Camilla.
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I know that eavesdropping is wrong, and that it could be doubly horrible if it’s your ex that you’re trying to hear, but this was essential. I curled around a corner and listened hard. A lot of the other students had gone to bed, but I was waiting for who I knew would be there.

Sirius stood there, James by his side, talking. I loved the way the fire lit up his eyes, like devilish orbs of ecstasy. How odd, that I should notice now…

“So what’s the problem?” James was saying. Sirius shook his head, taking a swig of firewhiskey, and then clearing his throat.

“That’s it, mate, I dunno! She’s completely mental sometimes! I mean, one moment I’m all cuddly as fuck, the next she’s practically ready to blow and running away! Chick’s fucking mental!” I winced as Sirius breathed again. I knew he was slightly drunk, but even the alcohol in the firewhiskey wasn’t potent enough to induce anger from nowhere. That was there before the drinking.

I sighed running my hand through my hair, which was starting to grow and produce ugly brown roots. I scrunched up my nose when I thought about how annoying the beauty charms are to get rid of roots. My eyes flew back to where Sirius and James were standing, still talking.

James had been saying something, but I only caught the last word, “her?”

Sirius grumbled something, taking another swig and swallowing rather hard, his face twisting a bit. Then he exhaled, “’s just, sometimes I feel like…well, do you ‘member that annoying book they made us read for Muggle Studies, with Homer or whatever, and all those singing fish?”

“The Odyssey?” Sirius nodded. “Those were sirens, Padfoot.”

“Right, well, I feel like she’s a singing siren, and I’m this little sailor. And y’know me, mate, I’m no fucking innocent little sailor, but she’s makes me feel like a pansy kid—anyway, I feel her singing fish song and I’m pulled in, and I just keep getting pulled in, but she’s just doesn’t seem to really want me to die, y’know?”

James stared at Sirius for a long moment, processing the information. Sirius took yet another swig of firewhiskey and coughed, almost spitting up on himself, but knowing how to handle his alcohol. I grimaced when I thought about how the firewhiskey affected him.




I let my hands tangle into my hair, feeling more than a little bit annoyed at what had just occurred. Siren? Is he crazy?

I shook my head again, fighting the urge to sneeze and holding my breath. There’s a light pounding above my head, and suddenly Lily comes into view. She’s as keen as mustard, bouncing over to James and telling him something. Whatever it is, it confuses him. She takes his hand rather roughly and pulls him to the staircase she just leapt away from. They disappear, leaving Sirius with nothing.

I begin to detach myself from my honourable hiding position when suddenly there’s more banging. Mute is in view now, and she looked torn. She stopped just in front of Sirius, who observed her for a few moments before she walked towards Remus. The two left together.

Now Sirius was alone, drinking and mumbling to himself. I pulled away from my dark corner and walked a little ways away so that he wouldn’t see where I was hiding. Then I approached him.

“Sirius,” I called. His head turned towards me and his eyes darkened.

“Unless you have a fantastic excuse, I wouldn’t bother,” He told me, taking yet another guzzle of firewhiskey.

“I can’t be your girlfriend, Sirius,” I sighed and released all the air I had in my lungs. A weight had been lifted from my shoulders, but it was miniscule compared to the one on my heart. “I can’t be your anything.”

“Why not? We get on, Milla, and you’re being ridiculous!” It was a drunken response, and although I knew that our romance had been built upon deceit and confusion every word we were speaking up until now was truth.

“I just don’t do well with relationships. Once there’s a title on it, it’s not as special. I want to be the one you can’t wait to see, not the girl you always and have to see…” I trailed off, but I think he got my meaning. Sirius nodded, his eyes fixed upon the ground.

“Friends?” He finally said. I nodded, feeling the level of my bragging rights chances dropping even more. “I don’t want to be.”

“You’ll have to deal.” I told him, sticking my chin up ever so lightly. He nodded again, looking at the ground once more.

“Just be m’ girlfriend?” He groaned. I shook my head, taking a deep breath.

“This is going in circles! Let’s talk when you’re not drunk.”

“No! Just agree to be my girlfriend and this will all go away.”

“You’re being unreasonable,” I sighed, running a hand through my hair, he mimicked me. “Let’s just go on living and not stick any labels on it?”

“I don’t want to pretend.” He pulled me to him, rushing to put his lips on mine, but I kept resisting. He moved his lips over mine, running his hand over my back, in my hair, and along my chin. This was ridiculous.

Note to self, never make out with an angry drunk guy. Ever again.

It wasn’t bad, just completely unromantic. And yes, even I can be a helpless oaf when it comes to matters of the heart, but this wasn’t something that I wanted to file into my memory. I shoved him off of me.

“I’ll talk to you again when you’ve learned some manners!” I shrieked. I rushed up the stairs and into my dorm, cursing at myself in my head and rubbing my wet eyes with the backs of the knuckles. Humility is the curse of the romantic schleps. 


Dont hurt me! It will get better! I promise! Please review! 

-love-
LM

Review Question: Who is your favorite character and why?

Chapter 16: Chapter Sixteen. Elsie.
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A few days passed. I giggled at something Peter had just said, sipping my corn bread and chicken shake. The guy across from me, his pale features appearing so handsome, chuckled half at his own joke and half at my dinner choice. He said he never understood the appeal of the shakes, and found them rather “grotesque looking”. Of course, after he told me what grotesque meant, I made him try one.

“Just take a quick drink!” I urged. He chuckled, shaking his head, and guarding his soft pink lips. I giggled, moving the lid off of my goblet and quickly, as if I had said the thought out loud, a metal spoon appeared. I picked it up and dipped it into the shake, not scooping up any of the chunks, but getting all the goodness.

Making a sound alike to an airplane, I let my hand swoop over to his mouth, encouraging him to open it. He laughed a lot and in that time I managed to drive the spoon into his mouth. He took it with grace, I must say, and tasted the food.

Just like I knew he would, his face lit up and he exclaimed, “That’s mind-blowing!”

It was cheesy and awesome, and I rewarded his courage with a kiss. Peter smiled, and I smiled back. Bliss.

I looked down the table, grinning to myself as I saw Camilla walk in and sit down all grumpy. James and Lily walked in, and I almost choked on my shake, Peter nearly copying me as he coughed and hacked for a moment. They were holding hands.

Lily had her chin raised, and suddenly whispering was all around us. People were ogling them, laughing, whispering, making suggestive noises; it was chaos. The professors at the front table looked up in sudden alarm, but then just sat there, faces amused, eyes wide, and lips smiling. This was truly a sight to see. Someone started to slow-clap, which made Lily bust up laughing, turning into James’s chest, to which he wrapped an arm around her shoulders.

“Wow,” Peter breathed as the couple passed by us. “They look…happy?”

“Yeah,” I beamed, smiling as wide as ever. I knew it was inevitable! “Lily!”

The redhead turned to me, a bright smile coming to her face as she saw Peter with his arm wrapped around my shoulder. She winked at me, and I gave a face, mouthing, “Did you…?”

She shook her head, a mock frown coming on her face, but then she turned to James and planted a kiss on his cheek.

I started to laugh, and Peter stared at me like I was mad. He gave me a quick peck on the cheek and then excused himself to find some seasoning for his pasta. I watched him go a few feet away, my eyes landing on Mute and Remus. He was talking to Sirius, who was sitting across from him. I noticed that Sirius had his eyes planted on Camilla, even though she refused to even look at him at all. Actually, she didn’t look at anyone. I didn’t blame her though; on one side there was Ken and Kendra Rollins, and on the other was her dare subject. Rather enthralling story, no? Poor Millie…

Mute was playing with Remus’s fingers, entwining them with her own and poking them, moving them, instigating a chuckle and a kiss from Remus. It was cute, but not as cute as Peter and me, for sure.

My thoughts were drawn to images of previous nights, how close we were, and yet still how very far. I had considered telling Peter it was a dare, just so he would speed it up, but of course I knew it would ruin our relationship.

“Peter,” I called. He came to my side, smiling as he had found the seasoning. He sprinkled it onto his pasta, and stirred it all up, taking a quick bite before he turned to me. I sighed, taking a piece of cloth and wiping his cheek for him, smiling.

He laughed, “Thanks, babe. What’s goin’ on?”

“We should meet in the classroom…tonight,” I told him, looking at him evenly. He stared into my eyes, his own flickering from my left eye to my right.

“Really?” He gulped. I nodded, smiling, and taking a sip of my shake. He nodded and turned to his food, thinking to himself no doubt.

An hour ticked by and then everybody stood from their spots on the benches and we walked back to our common rooms. I smiled over at Haley, and she waved, obviously forgiving me for the flashing incident. That was awkward for her.

As we walked into the common room, Peter kept his hand protectively on my back, and he led me over to the window seat. Someone lit the fire, and people were separating and coming together, lining up over by the chess boards, snagging their spots on the sofas and armchairs, circling to play miniature games, and being teenagers. I smiled at Peter, and he smiled back at me nervously.

“So when you said we should meet in the classroom,” Pete sighed. “Well, I know that we usually meet in the classroom, but we’ve never planned it, and I was just wondering…well, I know that this is probably nothing like what you were thinking, but…well, did you maybe think we would…that something would happen?”

I started to reply, but he immediately cut me off, shaking his head, “No, no, something always happens, but,” he paused and smiled awkwardly. “I’ve never been in a relationship, and I don’t know how this goes. You’re my girlfriend though…right?”

“Of course!” I answered doubly by giving him a kiss.

“And…well I think that I might love you.”
“Oh,” I was astounded, completely floored by what he said! He loved me! He really loved me! And I loved him too, right? But I hadn’t told him, so he told me first, and this was wonderful! “Oh, Peter…”

I pounced on him the way an animal might. It was embarrassing, looking back, but then it was simply an automatic response to something so completely amazing. I felt butterflies in my stomach, a pressure in my heart, and this huge gust of happiness. He responded enthusiastically, his hands coming to my waist and rubbing my hipbones. It tickled, making me squirm just a little.

“Get a bloody room!” Someone with a very deep voice shouted from a little away.

“Oh we intend to,” Peter laughed. And I laughed too.

“How about we meet in about half an hour? That way we won’t have to worry about curfew and we could just stay until early morning? Sneak out while others are coming for breakfast?” I offered. He nodded, staring deep into my eyes, his own twinkling with something unexpected.

I bounded up the stairs to the dorm, laughing like a maniac, and opening the door.

I began to hum, singing a gentle tune. That’s when I saw them.

Mute, Lily, and Camilla. All there. For the first time in who knows how long! I gulped.

“Well, lookie here, the gang’s all” I was cut off by Camilla.

“Save it, Els, we know you plan to do it tonight, but we have trouble.”

“Trouble?” I asked. I looked over to Lily, who was staring hard at the floor, her eyes blinking back tears. Why would she react this way? “Define trouble?”

“It’s Molly. I think…I think she’s trying to blackmail me,” Lily said. I looked at her, confused.

“Why would she blackmail you, Lil?” I asked.

“She likes James. And she shares the dorm, she’s heard us whispering, put two and two together, and told me that she knew our plan. She didn’t say anything else, so I don’t know for sure.” She stopped. Then she started to sob, “She’s going to make me give up James.”

“Shh,” Mute rubbed her back, her own eyes a little wet. I stared, dumbfounded by everything that was happening. How could a moment so wonderful turn into something so horrid? “You won’t…”

“Stop acting like you actually care for the guy,” Camilla huffed. Lily looked up, pure venom seeping from her gaze. I shivered. Those green eyes, so normally happy, were dark and loathing. “You only like him, because he’s the first bloke since the whole Snape debacle.”

“Oh, shut it, Milla!” Mute snarled, still patting Lily on the back.

“Who asked you, Bickerdyke? You’re the same way! You don’t care for Remus. None of us would of even considered the guys if the dare hadn’t come up. You know it!” Camilla shouted. My gaze drifted to the door—it was open.

“Lower your voice,” I hissed.

“I say we just let the bitch have Potter and get on with our lives, forget about the dare, forget about the guys, forget about everything!” She continued.

“We can’t do that now! And it’s all your bleedin’ fault you know! You’re the one who came up with the bloody bet!” Mute shouted.

“Guys, really, you need to calm d..” They kept fighting, cutting me off.

“Well, just quit! Tell them you don’t care, tell them you’re dying, tell them anything! Just fucking leave this!” Camilla yelled. I shook my head, my own sobs starting. I couldn’t give up Peter, not now.

“We cant’!” Mute yelled. Then she took a breath, “We signed a contract. If we don’t seduce the guys, we have to go through ‘or else’. Remember?”

Her gaze went to Camilla, her eyes seemingly laughing and reprimanding Camilla at the same time. Everything about this moment was wrong. The two stared at each other, just stared.

“Well, hurry it up, and then ditch them. We have to pretend this whole thing never happened,” Her eyes shifting to the floor. “Do it all tonight.”

Then there was silence. We all looked at each other. I knew I was in for a picnic, but the rest of them had to hurry. Silence.

“Tonight?” Mute whimpered.

“Yeah,” said Camilla.

We looked at each other. Silence. 


Oh SNAP! 

So, what do you think? What are your thoughts about everything? To tell you the truth, I think this is the most honest writing I've ever done. I saw the scene between the girls playout like a movie, and so it might be a bit raw, but it's just as I saw it. 

Please leave a review!
-love-
LilyMaria

Reviewer Question: What's the one thing you really DON'T want to happen in the coming chapters?


Chapter 17: Chapter Seventeen. Lily.
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My mind raced a lot that night. Of course I wasn’t going to just walk up to James and ask for him to ravish me. Of course I wasn’t going to try and make a deal with Molly. Of course I wasn’t going to try and sit back and let this whole thing work out by itself. I needed to take action, but it all had to be suggestive, stealthy, and successful.

After Camilla’s orders, I walked into the washroom and just stared into the mirror for a long time. Stared at my tear-stained face, at my ratty, tangled hair, at my bloodshot eyes; wondering the whole time whether I, at all, looked pretty when I cried. This, in actuality, is a ridiculous thought and more than a bit narcissistic. But that’s what I thought; moreover, I thought whether or not James would think I was pretty when I cried.

Another ridiculous thought. But I’ve always been that way, always been too concerned with how other people see me. That’s half why I wouldn’t agree to date Potter. I never wanted people to think of me as anything other than perfect, while I’ve always been anything but.

I cleaned up my face and attempted to brush out my frizzy red hair, succeeded a bit, but only slightly. I brushed my teeth quickly and then turned to change clothes. All the others were doing mostly the same thing, all busying themselves with getting prepared, cleaning themselves up. Mute was furiously combing her hair, tears running down her face. I walked over to her and wrapped one arm around her.

“Shhh,” I pacified her. “Listen, everything is going to work out.”

I don’t know what the catalyst to this sentence was. I knew everything wouldn’t work out, but the sight of Mute crying was unsettling, as she was always the rock solid comforter. And now she needed my comforting.

“You don’t understand, Lily,” She chirped. “He won’t do anything with me.”

“Of course he will!” I hushed her. “You’re an attractive, amazing, charming, intelligent young woman! He’d be lucky to have such a privilege!”

“No,” She sighed. “I wasn’t fishing for compliments, Lil. He literally won’t. Don’t ask me why, but he just can’t. And I can’t force him!”

“I hate to say this,” I paused. “But you have to try and make him.”

She nodded, her eyes filling with fresh tears. This was a hopeless situation. I knew that making anyone do anything is completely and totally wrong, but I shivered when I thought about the ‘or else’ might be. We couldn’t risk that.

I changed quickly, pulling on a khaki skirt and a soft brown velvet blouse that I’d bought at a small Hogsmeade shop last term. I pulled my hair back gently and dabbed a bit of perfume on my neck. I dabbed on some lip balm and then sighed. I was ready.

I waved to Elsie, who was changing into a halter dress, and then exchanged a long look with Mute, who was wiping her cheeks with a towel. I turned and waited about ten seconds, as Camilla had just exited, and I didn’t want anything to seem too obvious.

When I entered the common room, everything seemed so mesmerizing. The light from the fire was reflecting from the mirrors and metal picture frames that lined the walls. The students were all participating in different activities. The smell of warmth and cinnamon and wood was in the air. I inhaled deeply, looking around hopelessly for the raven haired guy I needed.

“Lily,” Sirius darted up behind me and scooped me up in a huge bear hug. I squealed, drawing way too much attention to myself and Sirius than I’d planned. I quickly located Camilla, who was looking straight at us, a glint in her eye, and biting her lip. Sirius put me down so that I could turn to him.

“Sirius, you know better than to sneak up on a gal and sweep her off her feet!” I grinned. I hadn’t been on friendly terms with Sirius Black for very long, but he was quite a clever bloke, and I noted immediately that we had chemistry as friends. Which, after loathing him for almost seven years, I was tremendously surprised to discover.

“Ah, I simply cannot help it, lady, as I’m quite the charmer!” He chuckled at his own joke. His glossy black hair was falling into his eyes, which were bright as he looked down at me.

“You wish,” I laughed heartedly, turning a bit to scan the room.

“Looking for Jamesy Poo?” Sirius smirked, looking as well. I knew he already knew where he was, so I simply endured this silly game he was playing. “I noticed him over by the window, with Molly.”

“M-Molly?” I stuttered. Oh Merlin, she couldn’t have! Not yet! I turned toward the window quickly, my peripheral vision spotting Mute jumping off the last step, directly into Remus’s arms. They beamed at each other and exchanged a long kiss, which I was proud to see (oddly enough) because Mute was holding up so well.

Sure enough, James and Molly were seated on the window seat. I froze in place, my mouth open, and my eyes wide with worry. Molly was facing towards me while James was looking out the window. I looked to Sirius. He made a shooing motion with his hands, smiling ever so slightly. I turned towards James again.

As I walked over, of course a thousand thoughts raced through my head. Had Molly already told him? What would happen if she had? Would he forgive me? What was going to happen when I finally reached them?

Molly looked up from James, her eyes spotting me immediately. At her sudden disinterest, James turned as well. He beamed when he saw me. And I only had eyes for him, despite the evil death glare that I was receiving from Molly. I glared back when James turned to excuse himself, but as soon as his attention was to me, I found my glare dissolve.

“Hey,” He breathed as he rushed over to me. “I’ve been looking for you all night.”

He kissed me quickly, a light smacking sound going in the air. And when we were apart again, I smiled sadly at him. He didn’t pick up on the edge tonight, which was a relief.

“I, er, have a gift for you?” I laughed. He laughed too, confused though.

“A gift? Babe, you know I don’t need a gift or anything! Being with you is,” He paused to take a deep breath. “It’s more than anything you could ever give me…”

“Well, that’s the gift,” I took his calloused hands in mine. He looked at me strangely. I let my thumbs rub the back of his hands softly, and I looked down. “I want to give you…me.”

“Lily,” he sighed. I started to shake my head gently. “You know how wonderful that is for me to hear, you know. But I can’t make you do that!”

“But,” I started to refute, but he continued.

“We only started dating a little while ago. What sort of a bloke would I be if I let you do this? I’d feel like a prat, Lily. You’d feel terrible too! And don’t deny it.” I shook my head. I almost started to cry when I realized the truth in his words. But then a thought came over me.

I loved him. It was such a weird sensation. A dumb feeling swept through me, like this was always there, but it was just now that I could truly see it, feel it. I’d been so blind, so ignorant of myself. It was a good feeling, knowing that I cared for him so deeply. And I knew he cared for me the same way, even if he didn’t say it.

“It’s what I want, James. Don’t you?” I asked, looking up. I knew it was a guilt trip, but this entire night was just so terrible, I could be just a bit like Camilla if I needed to be.

“Of course I do!” He nearly choked. “Merlin, normally it’s the guy pressuring the girl!”

I laughed, “Well, you know there’s never been anything normal about us, J.”

“I s’pose not,” He sighed, tucking a piece of my hair behind my ear. I let my eyes flutter closed. “Listen, I don’t think you’re going to get this out of your head. And…I’ll do it.”

“You will?” I shouted, throwing my arms around him and squealing. He lifted me up and swung me around a little, laughing at my enthusiasm. “Oh James, thank you!”

“But let’s wait. At least a few weeks. Maybe next month?” He said, rubbing a hand through his hair, and looking to the ground.

Camilla’s word rang through my head. We needed to do it tonight, it couldn’t wait. “Well, just quit! Tell them you don’t care, tell them you’re dying, tell them anything! Just fucking leave this!” That’s all I could hear, Camilla shouting over and over again. It was annoying, and demanding. I sighed.

“James, I can’t wait that long.” I took his hand roughly and guided him up the stairway. He protested all the way up, but didn’t snatch his hand away.

Once we were in the boys’ dormitory, I led him to the bed I knew now was his, and hopped up. He had no choice but to sit down as well, or leave me. But he just sat on the edge. I groaned and pulled the curtains closed all around us, the one on his side draping over his legs. He pulled them up so that the curtain could hang straight. I lifted my wand, “Silencio!”

“Lily,” He began sternly, but I just looked up at him with the biggest puppy dog look.

“You just don’t get it, James. I need you. Right now, I need you, and it can’t wait, and that’s just…that’s just it,” I pulled him to me, putting his hands on my waist. I’d never seen a guy so reluctant to snog or shag or anything. It was obvious James was different. And I was so proud and so honored that he was, but right now that mattered very little.

“Lily, I can’t do this. I can’t! We’re seventeen! That’s so young, I don’t think you realize!” He griped.

Camilla’s words again crossed my mind: “Well, just quit! Tell them you don’t care, tell them you’re dying, tell them anything! Just fucking leave this!”
“James, it can’t wait!” I told him quickly.

“Why? Why can’t it wait?” He waited skeptically. I watched him apprehensively, wondering what could possibly make him help me in this. To make him sleep with me. And then, finally, Camilla’s words came in handy—not that I’d ever let her know it.

“I’m dying,” I cried. I worried I would be horrible at acting, but the tears came easily when I stopped to think about everything and how overwhelmed I was right now. How Molly was threatening to take James away, and how I was so worried that she could. That someone could literally effortlessly grab someone you love and make them love them…it seemed completely mad, but it scared me so much. Because I didn’t want to lose James.

“You’re…you’re what?” He asked, thoroughly confused. “You can’t.”

“I’m dying. I can’t explain. But that’s the gist of it. Please, I just need to do this.”

I cried into his shoulder for effect, and he kissed the top of my head. And we just sat like that for a really long time. And then his lips found mine.

It was like he was putting everything he had into it. And I felt horrible, because it wasn’t suppose to be this way. He wasn’t supposed to be guilt tripped into sleeping with me, like I had been guilt tripped into dating him.

His lips moved over mine, and he quickly kicked his shoes off. They tumbled off the bed onto the floor, but I never heard them land, as we were surrounded in a silent cocoon. I kicked mine off as well and inched closer to him. He looked into my eyes for a moment and then we kissed once more. I felt him roll on top of me and relished his warmth. It was a wonderful sensation.

We collapsed onto his pillow, and I inhaled deeply this familiar scent that was embedded in the cloth, but also on the man who was kissing my neck. I sighed, trying to edge him on. It was one of the most crucial moments of my life, and I just wanted it to be over. And strangely, I wanted it to last longer. Because James didn’t know. And now that I’ve told that horrible lie, he’s going to hate me even more.

His tongue licked at my neck, and then went upwards, leaving a wet trail to my ear. He whispered, “I love you.”

And I knew he meant it, because I meant it.

I pulled him to me, pushing my lips onto his. There was a sadness in his eyes, and I knew it was because he was still think that I was going to be dead. And I hadn’t lied. I will die, eventually, and therefore, every moment I live I am in fact dying!

James’s hands went to my hips, rolling softly back and forth. I smiled and put my hands at his shoulders, wrapping them around his neck, pulling him closer. Because I wanted him to be closer. Closer than any other person had ever been.

We rolled onto our sides, and stared at each other. Minutes passed. Then, very slowly, I took my hand and unclasped my brown blouse, undoing on button at a time.

James smiled, “Why would you buy a shirt with so many buttons?”

“So I could torture you?” I guessed, undoing buttons at an even, steady pace. His eyes were glued to my chest, but not in a sick way, in an enticing way. It made me feel wanted, desired for more than just notes or answers. It felt so good.

Gods,” He moaned, taking matters into his own hands, literally. The buttons were undone in less than ten seconds, and my stomach was exposed. I felt more than a bit self conscious, but I tried not to show it. He stared, and then he looked into my eyes, and I saw such warmth that I sat up a bit and edged the shirt off.

He touched my arm, and moved his hand gently up to my shoulder, touching every part of me. And I closed my eyes to feel it. His hand traveled over my bra, giving me goose bumps. I scooted closer to him, just to make him touch me more. It felt so good.

That sinking feeling, the feeling where your abdomen sinks into your lower half, that beautiful feeling was going double time right now. It was delicious, and I craved it. I moved ever closer, so close that I was touching him. And he was firm, if you get my drift.

We drew closer for another kiss. His tongue darted between my lips, massaging mine with this abandon I didn’t know he had. He reached back, and after a few numb tries, his feeble fingers unclasped my bra. I stopped the kiss. Then he looked panicked, and I realized we were both fumbling teenagers, and I started laughing.

Which was completely the wrong thing to do, because it probably scared the hell out of him, and he scooted away, his eyes full of humiliation and disgrace, and I was laughing my ass off, my heaving chest exposed.

“What’s funny?” He managed to smile, but I felt so bad for him that I pounced at him. My words coming in between the pity kisses.

“We’re so inexperienced. I love it,” I gave him a passionate kiss.

“Inexperienced?” He laughed. Then he flips me a bit and he was on top of my again. That delicious feeling of his hips pressed to mine was back, and I moaned. I covered my mouth, embarrassed, but he grinned and pulled my hand away. “I like to hear you.”

I gave a small smile, and then he kissed me again. His hand roamed my chest for several minutes, marvelously giving the impression that they were experienced. I sighed, arching up to meet him several times. I realized he was still mostly clothed, and tugged on the bottom of his light jumper. He laughed, pulling up off quickly. I was flatly horizontal, but he was sitting up straight, a leg on either side of me, his groin pressing into my pelvis. And I couldn’t control the moan that escaped me. And that’s when he ground his hips into mine.

It was like fire. I gasped, reaching up to pull him back to me, my hand working to trace every part of him. His chest wasn’t defined perfectly, meaning he wasn’t the epitome of a macho man. In actuality he was rather lanky, but boy was he fit! I kissed his shoulder, his collar bone, everywhere. He let out a groan, and it made me feel satisfied in a strange way. “Lily…”

My heart was racing and I played his game by grinding my hips and bucking them upwards to meet his. He fell over, on top of me, panting. I laughed, kissing his jaw, his neck, licking the space beneath his ear. He was beautiful.

I reached down and unbuckled his pants, sliding them down a bit before his hands came to assist me. My skirt had been lost in the tumble.

Moments of awkward movement passed, and then we were just us again. He was lying on top of me, his weight heavy and wonderful. We were both simply in our undergarments. I felt his hands reach down, driving my knickers a bit lower. And my eyes met his. He smirked, loving this power he had over me. I felt this delicious feeling, this magnetism that drew me to buck my hips once more, which made him groan. It was lust, but covered by love. Because in my mind, ultimately, they are one in the same when in action, and I loved James with so much of my heart, and I knew he loved me. And this was just beautiful.

And we continued, touching each other and discarding smaller bits of clothing, until we were completely together. He looked into my eyes again, and I nodded. And then the bed rocked a little. And we were together, in the closest sense. I bit my lip and closed my eyes. James gently patted my hair and kissed my lips and my cheek and my forehead. He stayed completely still so that I could try to regain my breath.

The dare didn’t come to mind until after. When we were both laying in silence, under his sheets, bathed in a soft layer of sweat, panting. It was the most glorious feeling I have ever felt. I turned to him, and he patted my hair again. And there was a glint in his eyes, which, I’m sure, matched my own. Triumph.

“I love you,” I whispered.

“I know,” He laughed, and he held my hand. 

So, I'm definitely a horrible writer when it comes to close moments such as these, and I hope that didn't ruin the chapter.

PLEASE review and tell me what you thought, especially this chapter!
-love-
LilyMaria


Review Question: What is Mute's favorite color? Camilla's? Elsie's? Lily's? 

Chapter 18: Chapter Eighteen. Mute.
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Author's Note: This chapter is dedicated to Equilibrium, who, in the review response, gave me the nicest compliment ever. It made my heart swell, and I can't say how much that meant to me =) Everyone should go read the current one shot (that should totally be transformed into a novella *nudgenudgewinkwink*) Lullaby by Equilibrium. It's truly amazing! Okay, sorry, onto chapter Eighteen!

We were back in the astronomy tower, on the couch, snogging. I hadn’t introduced the concept to him yet, but I was pretty sure, if I wanted anything to happen, I would have to say something soon. He ground his hips to mine, and I let my hands tangle into his hair. Remus was so free tonight, it actually came to my mind whether or not he had given up on the notion that we couldn’t be close together. But since we still had all articles of clothing on, I assumed nothing had changed.

“So I’ve been thinking,” I told him. He was nibbling on my ear, extremely gently, so he would break skin of course—he was terrified of hurting me. He stopped momentarily.

“Oh yeah?” He asked before returning to his ministrations. I laughed and nodded, wrapping my arms around his neck and keeping them there, staring up at him with widened eyes.

“Yeah, and I’ve decided that you’re a big boy. You’re seventeen. And I think we could handle it if we had sex,” it all came out in one breath, closing the argument for me with a heave. I was so embarrassed to be saying this, my mind still focused on the incident earlier.

Remus stared into my eyes. I could feel his heartbeat—alerting me that, despite everything he believed about him being such a monster, he was truly just as human as I was. He sucked in a breath and collapsed onto me. His voice was muffled by my skin, “Mute, I’ve told you. We can’t!”

I knew he wasn’t angry at me, but simply frustrated at himself. Because regardless of what he would tell me, I knew that Remus, merely by being a teenage boy, was craving sexual contact. And I was all too happy to give him some, if he’d let me.

The strange part: I didn’t know if it was only for the dare. Because as much as I wanted to finish it—I honestly didn’t care who won—I didn’t want it to end. I loved him too much to let him go, and I loved him way too much to explain that I only used him to win a bet. He’d be heartbroken.

“Please?” I asked, whispering.

“Why do you want to so badly?” He cleared his throat, which tickled against my collarbone. I giggled, and he gave a soft smile.

“I’m a teenager, I love you, and I want to?” I told him evenly. He nodded, as if my argument was valid. But I knew he loved me and wanted to, I just didn’t think he wanted to enough. Maybe with some convincing? But I wasn’t that manipulative, or confident. “Do you not want me?”

“Oh Merlin, Mute, how could you even assume that?” He breathed. I let my eyebrows float up, giving me my innocent, yet truly confused, expression. “I want you…so badly.”

He kissed me again. I licked his bottom lip before gently pulling away. Remus played with a piece of my hair that was grazing my cheek. I touched his hand, “Then be with me.”

He rolled over a little so that he was on top of me. And all of a sudden there was this huge, enthusiastic gust of heat. I don’t know how to aptly describe it, Remus just seemed like he was exploding. All of the tension, all of the self control, the discipline—gone. He pushed towards me, against the couch, devouring my lips with his own, moving his head in every which way to get better angles. I moaned, running my hands through his hair.

Remus twitched his finger a bit and then my shirt was undone, just like that. I froze, staring at the shirt and then into his shiny, almost burgundy colored eyes. He wasn’t the same reserved boy I had talked to this afternoon anymore.

He growled and marched forward, his hand resting on my hip, and then on the small of my back. I clutched his shirt, hanging on just to keep him at bay. His lips avariciously consumed mine, I felt him nibble on my lip. I rushed a hand to his neck; he felt like he was burning up. His hips bucked towards mine, and I could feel him.

“Re…” He let me breathe for a moment, and just as I was going to tell him that maybe he was right, he kissed me again, hungrily. His hand caressed my chest, stroking my stomach and breasts. I could feel his tongue dart in between my lips, could taste all his want. Another growl, and more weight was with me. I lurched forward to meet him, and when we had the smallest bit of mutually induced contact, it was like a surge of lightening. And his grunt was the thunder.

His hand left my breast to touch the waistband of my pants. I hesitated, but then I felt him slide them down. And I helped. As soon as my pants were around my ankles, Remus’s hand trailed upward from my ankle to my thigh. I gasped at the rough tenderness I could feel in his touch. He moved his hand ever so lightly, and I just about lost it. I gasped, cried, shook, everything.

He had this devilish smirk on his lips. I kissed him.

He moved his hands again, and I bit down on his lip. He growled and charged forward, ramming his pelvis to mine. All the breath I had in my body caught in my throat. I looked up into his eyes. They were angry.

“Remus,” I called out to him. I wasn’t loud, but didn’t whisper. He just looked into my eyes. He rammed forward again. “Oh, oh!”

He exhaled, “mmmm…”

“Fuck!” I shrieked. He bent his head down and quickly located my pulse point on my neck. He sucked on it, and I could feel him tongue lapping at it every now and then. I could feel his breath on my skin. “Oh…fuck.”
I reached my hand out and grabbed onto one of his belt loops. How could I be feeling so much without there being any real contact between us. I moved my hand over the button of his trousers, unbuckling them. His breathing hitched, and he froze. I shoved his pants down quickly, putting my hand directly where I figured it would most be appreciated. I wasn’t wrong.

Remus started snarling. His whole body shook violently, which made my shake. I wrapped my arms around his waist and then pulled him with all my strength. His arms gave out momentarily, and he wasn’t supporting himself anymore, he was just on me. I found myself panting lightly from all the warmth. Remus finally said something, “Merlin and Agrippa!”

I smirked and ran my fingernails over his spine, going up and down softly, not pressing any harder than a light breeze would. He shuddered. Then there was a buzzing. Just a dull sound.

All of a sudden the animalistic part, the desire, the ardor, everything was back in seemingly ten fold. Remus charged forward, his breath hitching, and my body tensing. We moved together for a few more minutes, and then I laid my finger gently on the band of his boxers. He froze. Everything was still. I pulled them down without any hesitation.

As I quickly dared to explore a bit, Remus seemingly lost his patience. He growled deeply and took control. I still heard that buzzing from just a moment earlier, and pulled Remus down a bit to investigate. He was mumbling to himself, “Please, please, oh, Gods, oh, shit please no, yes, Merlin….”

I couldn’t make sense of anything of what he was saying. I could hear the simple words, but it sounded as if he was speaking a different language, something very foreign.

“Remus,” I kissed him to get his attention too. His eyes bore into mine, the same dark burgundy color filling his irises. It startled me. He looked demonic. I whimpered, “Please, just do it. I want you to.”

He wavered, pausing to stare deep into my eyes again. I tried to look as serene and confident as I could, but all I could think about was how uncomfortable I thought I was. I knew he loved me, but a strange mix of self-consciousness and guilt washed over me. But love overcame everything, and I was sure that if we kept going it would work out.

Then the guilt kind of overpowered my lust. Which was a very unsettling feeling while being practically naked and pressed against a sexy, adventurous werewolf. He was so adorable, even in his animosity, his demonic, thrilling, terrifying mode. I let my hand wander and tangle into his eye length sandy colored hair. He rocked his hip gently.

“Mute…”

“Just stop.” I said evenly. He looked more than a bit aghast. One moment I’m tempting him, singing the sexiest siren song I can muster and the next I’m admonishing him?

He moved away from me. We sat on different sides of the couch. I buttoned my shirt.

“I knew this would happen,” he sounded heartbroken, like he’d just been cut from the little quidditch league. “I’m so sorry. I told you I couldn’t control it…”

He trailed off, and I finally was the least bit secure in my appearance after I’d readjusted my pants and fixed my hair. He had pulled on his boxers and trousers, but left his shirt off. I was tempting to run my hand over his chest, but I refrained.

“Remus, don’t blame yourself. I loved it! But, I couldn’t do that to you,” I sighed.

“What are you talking about? You weren’t doing anything but…well, you weren’t doing anything but good! And I should be the one apologiz,” I cut him off harshly.

“No. I would have. Oh Merlin…Remus take a deep breath. Good, now just hear me out, okay? Please don’t get mad, don’t hate me. Because I love you more than I could ever, ever explain!” I started to continue, but he cut in quickly.

“I love you too, Mute,” He grinned to himself.

“No, Remus, you won’t after…Remus, I have something I need to tell you.”

“Okay, shoot,” He incited.

“Okay, well, you know when we returned from the holidays? Well Camilla had been broken up with, you know Camilla, the bitch who is ensnaring Sirius Black, probably as we speak, well she hatched this horrible dare.” I paused, cleared my throat. “And it was that we had to seduce a guy that was assigned to us. Or else.”

Remus snapped his head up, his eyes, no longer that brilliant shade of enticing claret, bore into mine.

“And we signed a contract,” I continued. “And, you were my person, Remus. That’s why…but then I got to know you. And I love you more than I could have ever expected!”

I started to go on, but he cut me off.

“You…you used me? You used me for a fucking dare?” He looked murderous.

“It was like a bet, you know? Oh, Remus, no not like that. No, she bullied us into it. Please, you have to know,” He cut me off.

“All this time, the pressuring of sex. I thought maybe, maybe you cared for me too much? Or you were curious…I was. And now. It all makes so much sense, perfect sense.”

“Remus, please,” I started.

“And it was all just trying to win a bet. I get it now. Fuck, Mute!” He yelled.

“No you have to know, though. I love you so much, please! I’m only trying to tell you the truth. I don’t even think about that fucking bet anymore when I’m with you,” I’m telling him so much truth laced with so many lies. Whatever it would take for him to believe me.

“What do you expect me to do, ignore the whole premise of our relationship? You only wanted to date me because you wanted to win! And I fucking bought into it!” I shuddered as Remus pounded his temples with his fists, shut his eyes tight. 

"I can't believe this," He groaned. A few minutes passed. Silence.

“Can you forgive me?” I cried. Tears were streaming freely down my cheeks.

“I don’t know, Mute, maybe we should fucking bet on it?” He picked up his shirt and cloak and stood from the sofa, his gaze leaving mine.

He left. And I was there, alone.

So much for the truth… 





You honestly don't know how long I've waited to use the 'maybe we should bet on it?' line. Seriously, since like chapter five! 
Remus has found out, but will he tell the others? Will the others succeed before it's too late? 
I don't know...    ;)

Thank you so much to everyone who has reviewed, faithfully or sporadically, it's all amazing. Thank you so much to everyone who follows the story, who answers the review questions, who takes the time to analyze why the characters are making the choices they are, why they are acting the way they do. It's all so amazing, and I'm so honored to have all of you involved in this strange little fantasy of mine.

That being said, please make my day and review! =)
-love-
LilyMaria


Review Question: If you were any of the girls, do you think you could go through with the dare knowing what you know? 


Chapter 19: Chapter Nineteen. Camilla.
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This chapter is dedicated to _Puck_, who has reviewed a ton, and is very nice and supportive. Thanks so much!



Despite what anyone will tell you or whatever you may read in some romantic comedy, waking up in some guy’s bed after a night of drinking is not something that gives you a warm, fuzzy feeling inside. Quite the opposite. But, of course, it does depend on the guy, and your current situation with him.

I rolled over, my head resting on a full, slightly damp pillow. I grimaced when I realized why the pillow was wet—my eyes were leaking. Some may call crying a birth right, but ever since Sirius Black came into my life, I’m going to have to call it a weakness. I fervently wiped my eyes, sniffling. I didn’t know, until then, that you didn’t need to be awake to weep. I rolled over again. The bed smelled of sweat, sex, and the soap that the house elves use.

With slight relief, I discovered I was quite alone. In a room I didn’t recognize, however, this didn’t satisfy me very much. I closed the curtains, and rubbed my arms, trying to gain some warmth. I’d been sleeping only slightly covered by the thin, cotton sheets. My mind flew into frenzy as I attempted to relive the past few hours.

I saw Lily dance down the stairs, still looking shaken, but hiding it. I’ve always had an excellent judge of character, and therefore can usually tell when people aren’t being themselves. Sirius greeted her, and the two talked for some time. My fingers ached, and I looked down to note that I’d been gripping the back of my chair with a vice grip. My knuckles looked cracked and dry. I let go.

Students buzzed past me. Mute floated down the last step and jumped into Remus’s arms. I grimaced. They looked too happy. My stomach knotted, and I felt my heart thump for a few beats louder. I had to make this all right. It was all my fault that they were in these situations.

I hopped off my cushy red armchair—which took quite a bit of effort, as I’d quite literally fallen into it—and glided across the room. I already knew, or at least thought, that this wasn’t how I wanted Sirius and my relationship to happen. I didn’t want to go down as just some random slut in his book. So I walked up to him as soon as he pointed Lily in the right direction.

My eyes followed the redhead for a moment, and landed on Molly. There had to be something done to that bitch before anything else could occur. I could literally feel my anger and hatred boiling for her. Lily, despite how I just screamed at her, is one of my best friends. They all are.

I couldn’t allow this to happen.

Before I could stop myself, I was by Sirius’s side. He was looking at Lily and James. Lily had grabbed James’s arms and was trying to persuade him, I assumed, to sleep with her. He looked shocked and nervous and excited all at the same time. I smiled, despite myself. Then I noticed Sirius’s eyes were on me now.

“Oh, uh, hi,” I laughed. He didn’t. He merely stared at me, and then turned so that his eyes were focused up Molly, who was glaring bullets at one of my best friends.

His attention returned to me, his face completely bemused, “There’s something not right about that girl…”

As he trailed off, my eyes jerked to Lily, who had finally won, it seemed, and was pulling a stricken James up the stairs. Momentarily, I felt rather annoyed and expectant. Why was I so mellow when it came to this dare? Why didn’t I care if Lily was going to win right now, before me? My mind returned to the task at hand, and I faced Sirius, “You mean Lily?”

“No,” the tone and inflection in his voice made it seem like it was obvious, and what I’d said was preposterous. “ Molly.”

“Oh,” I whispered. In my mind, I cursed the witch, but of course, in reality, that would get me expelled. No, the revenge had to be covert, just scrupulous enough to avoid punishment, and just disastrous enough to teach her a lesson on blackmailing people. My mind blazed with the scheme, just childish enough to capture her by surprise and maybe embarrass her. All I needed to do was recruit the troops and rally them up!

“So.”

“Hey.”

We said at the same time. He laughed a bit and motioned for me to continue. I smiled, “I have an idea.”

I’m sure that my eyes twinkled just a bit while saying this, and I image my face twisted into an expression of a purely devilish smirk. He lifted his eyebrows, his lips forming a rivaling, identical smirk. “I’m listening?”

~*~

“It was all for a bet?” Sirius’s eyes aren’t wide, they aren’t angry, they are just apprehensive. He doesn’t even seem hurt. And for a moment or two, I feel myself get rather annoyed a hurt that he isn’t the least bit emotion about it. Instead of flaring up, he takes it in stride. I watch his eyes looked to the ground, and it’s almost as if I can hear and see the thought process.

He’s upset, but he probably knew something was up. A group of four girls doesn’t just randomly decide to hook up with four boys. Life isn’t that fair. He’s angry, but he understands the thrill of dares and the absolute gratification one gets when they’ve won those immaculate bragging rights. He’s relieved, because now he doesn’t feel so bad about the rush of his affection. He knows that the relationship had a deadline all along. He’s embarrassed, because he actually had feelings for me. But at least they’re gone now.

I grimace. Gone. Then my head spins as I realize that I thought all those things, and he could be thinking something totally different.

I looked around the room, seeing Molly with two other girls that I’d never bothered to get to know. The fire was still blazing in the hearth, and I wondered if everyone would be getting ready to head to bed soon.

“Are you mad?” I ask, the first time I’ve let my voice sound like this. It’s vulnerable and hopeful and afraid. I didn’t like it, and scowled. Sirius shook his head, still looking at the ground.

Then he stood up.

“I’ve got to tell the others. Moony is going to flip, and I can’t even begin to imagine what Wormtail’s face is goin’ to look like when he finds out that the only girl to ever kiss him is only doing it for a bet…” My eyes grew wide, and I turned on him so fast, my strawberry blonde hair whipped a bit.

“You can’t! Not yet! Look, I do not know if you realize this, but the ‘or else’ that I didn’t specify is not exactly something I want any of them to go through! I don’t care for me. I understand if you never want to talk to me after tonight, let alone sleep with me,” I sniffled. Lying through my teeth until now, I let out the only truth I was positive of, “But, they’re my best friends, and I can’t let anything happen to them!”

“So, in order to help your friends, I have to allow my own to get hurt? I don’t think so, Milla,” I cringed. He chooses now to create a nickname? That’s going to haunt me for life. Milla.

And just like that, I was transported to yet another memory of Ken and me. We were sitting on the big, plush red sofa just a few feet away from where I was standing with Sirius now. Ken wrapped his arm around me, sniffing my hair, inhaling, and letting out a long, “hmmm.” I cuddled into him, burying my head into the crook of his shoulder. He was so warm and soft.

Ken rubbed my shoulder with his thumb, and I giggled, this moment feeling something akin to heaven.

“I love you so much,” Ken whispered. I looked up at him; his were eyes twinkling because of the fire. I ran my hand up his arm to his hair, and ruffled it a bit, smiling and kissing him quickly. He chuckled, “I’m waiting.”

“So am I,” I sighed. He looked at me, his eyes very confused.

“Millie, just tell me you love me, and get it over with.”

“Why?”

“Because it’s what couples do, for crying out loud,” He chuckled again.

“Well, we’re not average, and we’re not jumping on any bandwagons, so I think that you should stop pressuring me,” my voice was laced thickly with false sweetness. He scoffed.

Ken stood, “Well if you aren’t going to say it, then maybe you don’t feel it? Maybe I’m wasting my time?”

“Maybe you’re overanalyzing things?” I countered. Ken straightened his shirt absentmindedly and picked his cloak up from the side of the armchair. I sat up a bit straighter on the sofa.

“Maybe this whole thing was a severe lapse of judgment?” He mumbled. I locked eyes with him.

“Maybe you should go?” I spat.

“Maybe you should stop being a bitch?” He tossed over his shoulder, and then continued to walk to the staircase that led to the dormitories.

“Maybe.”

“Wait, just like that? You never give up that easily?” Incredulous, he stopped. When he turned to me, I was already halfway off the couch, sauntering over to him slowly.

“Maybe I don’t want to fight tonight,” I sighed, and quickly ran a hand through my—then—dark brown hair.

“Do I want to know why?” He asked, not catching on.

“Maybe,” I smiled. His eyebrows furrowed together, and he stared at me for a moment longer than he usually did before replying.

“Why?”

“Well, Ken,” I stepped closer, wrapping my arms around his neck. “Maybe I love you too?”

He put his hand on the small of my back, and locked eyes with me. His face was dark with love and lust, and I inhaled sharply. He guided me closer to me, his face an inch apart from mine, before his lips—

“Hello? Earth to crazy plotting maniac?” Sirius waved a hand in front of my face, disrupting the fantasy. My eyes closed, blinking back tears. Then they opened and I locked eyes with a different guy than the one I’d been thinking about—trading amber eyes for gray ones. “So, I think that I’m just going to help you right now, and then I can tell them first chance I get.”

“Right,” I nodded. “All right, well I think that Molly just needs a good kick in the rump. Nothing too drastic, but nothing to simple, know?”

He smirked, his eyes dancing with delight and mischief. We set to work, thinking up trillions of different schemes and pranks.

~*~

After conspiring for about ten minutes, Sirius took action. A simply flick of the wand, and Molly’s skirt and stockings were transported to the Headmaster’s office. I smirked as Molly strutted right up to George Marin in nothing but her purple, frilly panties. A snicker escaped my lips just as Sirius let out a bark of laughter. I looked at him and, in sync, we high-fived each other. It was a moment between friends, I grinned.

Suddenly there was laughter and whispering everywhere. Everyone was gawking at Molly, who remained oblivious (did she really not notice the draft?).

A shriek sounded as Molly listened to George, whose eyes were glued to her legs, and looked down as well, seeing at last what we’d done. Her eyes flew up, wide and humiliated. For a moment, I felt bad. But then my mind went zooming back to the scene I’d just exited of Lily crying and Mute crying and Elsie being weird. And I didn’t have it in my heart to be sorry for this girl who’d threatened the people that’d stuck with me, despite my bitchiness.

Molly’s eyes flew to mine. I was still smirking, just obvious enough for her to know that I’d done it. She stormed over to me, her humiliation being replaced by fury.

“Where are my clothes?” She spat. I laughed.

“Well, just forget about telling James about that dare, and you can have them back,” I offered. She bared her teeth, her eyes becoming slits.

“You’re blackmailing me?” Her voice held an immense amount of pure malice and disbelief.

“Doesn’t feel so nice, does it?” I patted her on the head, and she looked as though she was going to attack me. Sirius put a hand on my back. I hadn’t remembered he was there, but suddenly I felt comforted and smiled up at him, returning to the sweet girl that I’d been when I’d met him—back then, it was spurious sugariness, but now, I was pleased to note that it was sincere.

Molly looked from Sirius to me, and then stormed up the stairs to the dorm, huffing on every step and muttering obscenities. I watched her go, barely noticing all the laughter that was coating the common room.

Sirius didn’t lift his hand from my back, but lifted it to my shoulder, turning me around and embracing me gently. I wrapped my arms around his neck and stood on my tiptoes, clinging to him. And he was squeezing me tightly.

I laughed and stepped back, looking around at the damage. I saw a ton of girls whispering, a few guys laughing. I looked past them, and caught the eye of Ken, who was holding hands with Kendra Rollins as she gossiped to some sixth year. He smirked at me, and nodded in recognition of pure genius. And I beamed back.

Closure.

~*~

“You don’t have to do this,” I whispered. He chuckled, as if what I was proposing was absurd. He shook his head, my mind flickering back to his speech about how he wanted to. “I know that chivalry isn’t dead, Sirius, you really don’t have to prove that you’re a gentleman by being a whore.” 

Another bark of laughter came from deep in his throat. His lips were still kissing m neck, and I could feel his tongue leaving a fiery hot trail on my skin. I closed my eyes. I’d been waiting for this, and now it was going to happen. I was going to find out if he deserved his reputation. 

We paused for a moment and reached to the table by the bed, both taking a few sips of firewhiskey. Don't ask me why, but it tastes really good before sex.

Sirius’s hand crept to my belt, unbuckling it quickly. I hadn’t remembered putting on the belt, but did know that I needed it. All the worrying and scheming had worm me out, and made me lose weight. I looked rather frail these days—which helped with the acting dainty crap, but in retrospect was just unhealthy.

His hand snuck into my knickers, and I knew he didn’t plan for this to be extremely romantic, but then, neither did I.

I let my hands travel to his lower half, and whipped off his trousers quickly. He kicked them off with his feet, and then returned the favor. He didn’t bother unbuttoning my shirt; he just slid his hand up my waist, to my chest, under my shirt, and rubbed his hand over my bra a few times. It wasn’t exactly arousing, but I didn’t mind.

I slipped my hand into his boxers and he groaned. It was the first immediate, sincere reaction I’d gotten from him ever since he’d snuck me into this room. He hadn’t told me where it was, because according to him, “it’s a secret.”

I touched him and wiggled against him as he touched me. My lips worked over his, the first passionate kiss. My mind flew, and I realized that I didn’t actually want to do this. So I faked it—don’t tell Sirius.

I grinded against him, letting him know he should continue and get it over with. He understood. A moment later, he was with me, in that way. I responded. And we moved together.

I won’t detail it exactly, as it wasn’t romantic, and it wasn’t even what most would consider real lovemaking. It was just sex.

~*~

I sighed, running a hand through my hair, last night completely coming back to me. No wonder Sirius wasn’t here, he’d gone back to get ready. To leave me here, in this strange room, that only had a bed in it, and nothing else.

I grabbed my pants, put my belt through the loops, straightened my bra and shirt, and slipped my feet into my shoes. I combed my hair quickly with me fingers, and licked my lips.

When I opened the door, a few students were passing me by, their weekend clothes on. They didn’t notice me, and I shut the door carefully, stepping away from it slowly. I looked around, trying to account for where I was, and remember this spot, just in case I ever wanted to revisit that strange room.

“Milla!” I heard from behind me. I turned around to see Elsie flying towards me, her shoes making clattering noises on the stone floor. “Whatcha doing here?”

I looked back to the door, my finger pointing at it. But there was no door. I stared at it, dumbstruck. Where the wooden entrance and brass doorknob had been, there was simply matching gray stone.

“Right,” Elsie laughed. I assumed things with Peter had gone well last night. “Well, c’mon, let’s go. Mute needs to talk to us.”

She pulled me to the dorm. I didn’t even realize we were there, until I sat down on my bed, feeling my warm comforter underneath me, my fingers sliding over it softly. Last night was a blur, and I had a wicked headache.

Mute had dark circles under her eyes, and was fiddling with her fingers. I observed her, thinking back to about a month and a half ago, when I’d announced the dare. I remembered the lively, single Mute, with long brown hair, and dark, knowing eyes. I remembered the excited, love-stricken Mute, the one who had discovered more in Remus Lupin than even I could have guessed. And now, this new Mute, with sullen expression and sad eyes, this new girl was a new memory.

“Before you start,” I told her. Mute’s eyes fluttered up at me. Lily was sitting on her bed, holding her knees to her chest, and rocking back and forth. Elsie was twirling her hair on her finger. “I need to tell you guys something…”


Okay. So, Camilla and Sirius's sex scene was a disappointment, I know, but I didn't want them to have a beautiful experience, as terrible as that sounds. I just needed her to 'win' quickly, and him to help, and get out of the picture. So, I hope you don't mind that too much.

I had a review ask me if we could see more about Ken and Camilla together, because she didn't feel like Ken did enough wrong, or that they had a strong relationship, so that it why they have that in this chapter, and I thought that Camilla needed that beautiful moment of closure. So, yeah. 

All right, please review! And if you want to hear a few songs that I think go with Camilla and Sirius's relationship, you can check out my xanga, there's a playlist there. Xanga.com/LileeMaria. Also, listen to the song 'Show Me Love' by T.A.T.U. (It's the theme song for the entire story, and inspired me a bit in the beginning to write it. 

Thanks so much to everyone who has reviewed (I know I'm really  behind on answering them all, but I promise I will!)
That being said, please review!
-love-
LilyMaria


Chapter 20: Chapter Twenty. Elsie.
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Peter was excited, as any seventeen year old, hormonal teen would be. I was too, of course, but there was a huge weight on my shoulders from the moment Camilla began speaking. She was so sure of herself, and her goals. I wasn’t.

I was sure of quite a few things. Firstly, I was positive that when I left school I never wanted to have any form of contact with most of the people I knew. Second, I know that I was to have a blue house with white shutters, or a white house with blue shutters. And Third, I was in love with Peter, and he was in love with me. And to ruin that with premeditated spontaneous sex—it felt wrong, sacrilegious.

He held my hand as he led me to the normal classroom. The desks had a cushioning charm on them, and I was quite pleased to see he had taken a few precautions.

I walked up to him slowly. He tightened his hold on my hand a bit, and then loosened it to slide his hands up to my wrists, and then to my shoulders. For all the words to describe Peter heartless isn’t one of them. He was the most compassionate guy I’d ever known, and I let my lips form into a sincere smile at that moment. He kissed me tenderly, and I leaned my head on his shoulder without a sound.

He put his hand on my cheek and guided my face towards him again, looking into my eyes until the last second, right before our lips touched, and he closed his eyes. I let my hands roam a little, playing with his hair, tickling the back of his neck, sliding my hand down his arm to hold his hand. He pushed forward a little, relocating us to where the table was.

I won’t go into any more detail, but it was amazing! It felt like perfect, and magical, and I just wanted to keep going, but Peter got really sleepy, so we stopped. Despite the fact that we were sleeping atop a splinter-filled wooden desk, it was extremely comfortable. Lying down, Peter’s arm shrugged over me. I played with his fingers a little before I began to drift off.

He tickled me awake the next morning.

I couldn’t tell him about the dare. It would have destroyed him, and I loved him too much to do it. So I didn’t. But still, he loved me so much, and I loved him. It felt terrible to do.

I waddled down the corridor the next morning after being told by Lily to meet in the dorm during lunch. My thighs were sore, and I was really sleepy, but I felt more alive than I had in a really long time. The only bad part of this sunny afternoon was that Peter wasn’t around to share it with. He left to go to hang out with his mates.

I wiggled past some talking fifth years, and saw Camilla seemingly walk out of a wall. I figured she’d just been leaning against it. Her hair was rumpled and her lips looked kind of swollen, but she was as pretty as ever.

“Milla!” I shouted. I ran towards her, hearing my shoes make funny noises. She turned towards me, her eyes wide and confused. I beamed and asked, “Whatcha doing here?”

She looked really confused now, and turned, pointing at the wall. My eyes scanned the wall rather quickly, seeing nothing but old, gray stones. I giggled, “Right. Well, c’mon, let’s go. Mute needs to talk to us.”

I grabbed her arm and ran to the dorm, my eyes watching as the portraits of dead wizards, witches, and important people flew past in blurs. Students ducked out of our way, and then turned back to see us dodge a few more people. When we finally did reach the dorm, Camilla immediately shrugged out of my grip and flopped onto her bed, wiggling her fingers into her blankets. And people say I’m weird.

Mute was playing with her fingers a bit and kept opening and closing her mouth, like she had a lot to say, but couldn’t get it out. After two or so minutes of this, Camilla finally opened her mouth and blurted out, “Before you start, I need to tell you guys something.”


Lily, who had been balled up on her bed, rocking back and forth, now untangled her limbs and scooted to the edge to hear what Camilla had to say. Lily’s bright red hair, the locks that I’d always been jealous of, glowed in the sunlight that was entering the room from the window. I watched as Mute looked up at Camilla expectantly, and wondered what the strawberry blonde was gonna say.

“I ruined everything.” Camilla breathed. It seemed like this confession was really difficult for her to say, and I felt really bad for her. But I couldn’t deny that she’d messed up my life. “I love you all so much. When I was a shrew after that arrogant bi—after Ken left me…you guys didn’t abandon me. You were there for me. And Mute, you even let me stay with you for a week over the winter hols, and I can’t even tell you how helpful…it meant so much to me.

“The dare…it was the worst thing I could have possibly come up with. I was hurt, seeking revenge on the male population. The Marauders pulled that weird yellow snow prank, and I saw Black, and I saw Lupin and Potter and Pettigrew, I saw them and just put it in my mind that they needed to be punished. I’m so…sorry!”

We stared at Camilla like she was a leper.

“Lily,” Milla began once more. “Lily, you love James. And he loves you so much. You should be together. Apologize to him and if you truly loves you, you guys can work through this. And Mute, Remus loves you, and I bet if you told him, he’d still love you. Same for you, Els.”

“That’s what I need to say,” Mute chimed in. Her face looked really sad, guilty. “I told Remus last night. And he left me.”

A few tears streaked down her cheeks, and I gave her a one arm hug, trying to comfort her.

“We’ve got a lot to think about,” Lily finally said.



Well, I am so sorry it's taking me so long to update. I had a play and a ton of schoolwork. I know this chapter is short, but next one will be longer, I promise. I'll try to update before the end of the month. Please review!

-love-
LilyMaria

Reviewer Question: Besides the obvious Lily/James, which couple would you like to see stay together?


Chapter 21: Chapter Twenty-one. Lily.
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There was somewhat of a loud crash from downstairs. I sensed it before I heard it, just as I’d always sort of known I would end up here. From the very first moment I’d heard about the dare until now, I’d always dreaded being exactly where I was.

“Who is it?” Elsie called, her voice portraying no emotion, keeping our little powwow secret from the outside world. Elsie pushed a few strands of hair behind her ear using her fingers, and then plopped down on her mattress. It took quite a few moments before she called once more, “Hello, anyone down there?”

“It’s Remus. I need to talk to Mute…please,” His voice traveled through the crack in the door. It didn’t sound as polite as normal Remus was, and that was expected. Our eyes all met and we stared at each other for a long moment, silence becoming heavy and suffocating.

“Hold on, she’s coming,” Camilla called back. We heard a small shuffling and then turned towards each other once again.

“What are you doing?” Mute shrieked with her voice barely audible yet holding hostility mixed with fear. “Have you not heard the past half hour discussion? I can’t just talk to him!”

“Do you love him?” Camilla asked. Mute took a small step back, her face shocked. I reached a hand up and played with her hair a bit, positioning it behind her ear on one side and in front of her shoulder on the other. Mute shrugged away from me after a moment, glaring bullets at Camilla.

“What’s that supposed to mean?”

“Just answer the damn question, Mute,” Camilla sighed, a hand rushing to her forehead.

The answer was instantaneous, and Mute didn’t look embarrassed in the least after she very plainly stated, “yes.”

“Then work through this,” Camilla sat down, very calmly, atop her four poster. Then she stood up and began to pull the edges of the comforter that was resting on top of it, making her bed. Elsie giggled. Camilla breathed every word as she worked and moved around her bed, her voice stiff and harsh, “People who are truly in love, they work through all the shit to get to the real stuff. Mute, work through the whole fucking mess, and be in love, dammit.”

“Yes, sir,” Mute said quickly. She seemingly marched out of the dorm, leaving Camilla, doing chores in all her fury, and Elsie, still giggling, and me. The heavy wooden door closed behind Mute, the sound of its closing cutting through the new silence.

“Okay, love guru, what is my advice?” I asked, clearing my throat and moving to lie under my blankets. As I did so, Camilla sort of left my eyesight, so I moved my curtains to ensure that I could view the entire dorm.

“Go tell James the truth, hopefully before the guys did,” Camilla said, smoothing the bedspread on her four poster into flat perfection. I stared at her, mouth agape, bemused as to why all of a sudden the one who seemed unethical and sagacious now had all the answers. She noticed me staring, and then shouted, “Go!”

“Right,” I grimaced, getting out of the warm cocoon that I’d created with all my blankets, and practically running over to my mirror that was hanging just off to the left. I adjusted my hair quickly and dabbed on some lipstick, accidentally smudging it in all my haste.

As I made my way down the stairs slowly, I didn’t think about what Elsie was going to do, or when Camilla planned on letting us know what the ‘or else’ in the contract that we’d all ignorantly signed actually was. I didn’t think about how horrible it would be if all of us had to live with this the rest of our lives, or how embarrassed I would be if the guys, in a final act of revenge, informed the entire school (staff and students alike) about the past few weeks. They wouldn’t do it, but even if they would, I didn’t think about it on my way to see James.

I walked into the common room, ready to be completely honest with him. My ears suddenly were filled with the sound of a guitar strumming. I looked around, my eyes desperately searching for him. And ironically enough, it was the music that lead me to him.

“Oh, James, you play so well,” one third year was giggling.

“Where’d you learn?” Becky Whitlock, a sixth year, and top candidate for head girl of next year, batted her eyelashes at him.

“Play another?” That same third year asked, touching James’s arm lightly. James started playing, seemingly hearing and seeing the girls around him, but not really acknowledging them except every so often when he looked up.

“This one is the only song I’ve ever written that is complete. It’s called My Flower,” he began to play. I knew it was dedicated to me, but in true girl fashion played modest and acted surprised as I sat down. James was still playing, but he looked up.

“Hi,” I mouthed, smiling. He looked overjoyed to see me, his eyes twinkling. The sun was shining brightly in through the window behind him, and I had to squint slightly just to see his face.

The song continued—probably the most beautiful song I’d ever heard—and all the girls surrounding James looked at me with malice and envy in their eyes. They knew who the song was for, and yet they were still overly attentive to every strum just because they longed to have a guy play them a song like this one day.

The final note hung in the air long after he’d played it, and I was just smiling at him. Not reduced to tears, yet still completely speechless, I reached for his hand. He gripped mine as well, and asked, “Did you like it?”

“Are you kidding?” I laughed. It seemed like a completely innocent exchange, and yet my mind was annoyingly plagued by what I had to do. In this way, James was excruciatingly happy, and I had to break it to him. I, the girl he’d sought with so much vigor, the one he had chased endlessly until I was finally his, I had to tell him that it was all to win a bet.

“I was going to write lyrics to it, but I’m no singer, so I figured that wouldn’t be as…good as just the song,” James laughed, running a hand through his hair in that James way, which was weird. I used to describe it as stupid and annoying. But now, it was just…his—an action that was completely and totally reminiscent of James.

“I loved it. But…er…I have to tell you something,” I began, “and you really won’t like it.”

By this point the girls who had been drooling over James’s every word and twitch of finger were gone, distributed around the room; the only common interest they shared was him. I looked around quickly, checking for eavesdroppers and annoyingly observant people that I knew. We were in the corner, by the window, and without the music that James had been playing we weren’t drawing any attention whatsoever.

“I’m all ears,” James said, taking my other hand into his and holding them there between us. I could tell that he didn’t quite understand how terrible this was going to be. And why should he?

“Well, okay, do you want me to say it easy or just come right out with it?” That was dumb.

“Definitely straightforward truth. What is it? Is it your condition? Did the nurse say something?” James asked.

For a moment I was completely bemused by his rambling and questions. And then I remembered that my dear boyfriend, well he thought I only had three or so weeks to live. A stupid lie just to get sex—I’m an idiot.

“Well, hmm…that should make it a quick thing then. James, I’m not dying.”

“But you said you were?” He looked so cute, just sitting there, his eyebrows raised in confusion. I pitied him more than ever.

I snapped, “I know what I said, James. I lied, okay? I’m sorry.”

“Wow…I cannot believe you would—that doesn’t even—why would you…” He continued to stutter and stare me down for a few moments, and I looked down at our hands, strangely still joined.

“There’s more,” I whispered.

“More?” He groaned.

“I didn’t want to go out with you. I still hated you when I told you that I liked you the first time. And then we had lessons,” He interrupted my speech.

“You hated me? What?” He was almost shouting by this point.

“James, there was this bet. Camilla made it. We had to seduce you guys and all, and then we wouldn’t have to suffer the or else that wasn’t specified, and believe me, depending on what the or else was, if I’d known, I wouldn’t have,” He interrupted once more.

“Lily, what the hell—“ This time I interrupted him.

“But then I started to actually like you, because you’re kind of the best guy I’ve ever met, and you’re smart, and funny! And you’re charming, but in that totally accidental way, and I love that you don’t try to be—“

“It was all for a—what do you mean a bet? Bloody hell woman, what sick bet would you fucking want to win so badly that you would completely—and I thought I—and you said—bleedin’ Merlin!” James wasn’t making sense except in the way that he totally and completely made sense. I knew what was going through his head. And I didn’t want to be anywhere nears him right now.

“James, listen, I know you’re really angry, but you have to know, that I was bullied into it. And you didn’t make it any better. You were so bloody annoying that it totally made me want to screw with your emotions. But then I got to know you better, and I found out how amazing—“

“Lily…just don’t,” He winced. I tried to stop myself, but tears spilled onto my cheeks, and I couldn’t even imagine what this scene would look like to those who were observing. In an incredibly obvious fashion, most of the common room was ogling us, staring blatantly and giving me dirty looks. They had no clue what was going on, because they were too far away for them to hear, but if I upset big man on campus James Potter, I was public enemy number one.

“Do the rest of the guys know?” James interrupted my thoughts.

“Huh? Oh, I don’t think all of them, no. I know Remus does, and Sirius might, judging by how bossy Camilla’s been,” I said, evenly. Was he going to forgive me?

“Okay.” He spoke very calmly, but I could tell, simply by looking at him, that this was not good; whatever he was going to say was going to be bad. “I can’t do this. I can’t be near you. Just…don’t talk to me. Don’t touch me. Don’t talk to my friends. Just…let me be.”

“James!” I cried.

“Lily, I can’t do this right now. I can’t believe you would do something so heartless…so…just forget it.” He stood, and left. I looked down at my hands, sweaty from holding James’s, and somewhat cold, a sudden chill from James leaving.

People were gawking at me. And they had reason to; I was sitting there with tears streaming down my cheeks, my eyes red, puffy, and smudged with makeup, my mouth open, gasping like a fish out of water. I felt so alone.

I sat like that for a very long time, just sitting, staring at my hands, feeling the stares. And then there was a hand on my shoulder. I looked up to see none other than Sirius Black looking down at me, a comfortable, friendly, and completely unexpected smile upon his face. His hand crept from my shoulder to my hand, and he wrapped his own around mine, replacing James’s.

Without a word, we left the common room. 



Cliff hanger much? Well, thank you to everyone who reviewed! I know right now, the story is just one big confession after another, but it will soon become more, I promise. I hope you continue to enjoy, and review!

edit: ack, stupid typos. sorry everyone who noticed the weird/word mixup!
-love-
LilyMaria

Reviewer Question: Are there any songs that you think represent any of the characts, or couples? I'm asking, because  I am working on another playlist, and I need songs!


Chapter 22: Chapter Twenty-Two. Mute.
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There was a banging from the corridor. I jumped when I’d heard it, as the intensity of the moment seemed to seep into my mind, leaving me somewhat numb to any other emotion except worry and dread.

“Who is it?” Elsie called. Her voice was bland, and I didn’t understand how she had gone from completely stricken to blasé in the blink of an eye. And then I realized what exactly she was doing—making it seem like nothing was wrong, acting.

Elsie pushed a few strands of hair behind her ear using her fingers, and then plopped down on her mattress. Silence. It took quite a few moments before she called once more, “Hello, anyone down there?”

“It’s Remus,” I felt my heart quicken merely at the sound of his voice. I closed my eyes and exhaled deeply, tears nearly coming to my eyes. “I need to talk to Mute…please,” he added the mannerly phrase as an afterthought—typical Remus—but his voice was still edgy and hard. Our eyes all met and we stared at each other for a long moment, silence becoming heavy and suffocating.

“Hold on, she’s coming,” Camilla called back, her eyes never leaving mine. We heard a small shuffling and then I leaned toward Camilla.

“What are you doing?” I shrieked, attempting to be quiet, and yet holding hostility in my tone. “Have you not heard the past half hour of discussion? I can’t just talk to him!”

“Do you love him?” Camilla asked. I took a small step back, completely shocked. Lily messed with my hair for a minute, a very motherly gesture that I didn’t deserve. Even though I felt no trace of anger towards Lily at the moment, I shrugged away in spite. My eyes were still glaring at Camilla.

“What’s that supposed to mean?”

“Just answer the damn question, Mute,” Camilla sighed, a hand rushing to her forehead, feigning a headache.

The answer was obvious and I answered immediately, “yes.”

“Then work through this,” Camilla sat down, very calmly, atop her four poster. Then she stood up and began to pull the edges of the comforter that was resting on top of it, making her bed. Elsie giggled. Camilla breathed every word as she worked and moved around her bed, her voice stiff and harsh, “People who are truly in love, they work through all the shit to get to the real stuff. Mute, work through the whole fucking mess, and be in love, dammit.”

The way she accentuated the last word left me with little room to disagree. “Yes, sir,” I said quickly. I rushed from the room, opening the door and finding myself face to face with Remus faster than I’d been ready for.

He looked normal. I don’t know why I’d been expecting dark circles and disheveled hair, mixed with the inkling of a repentant smile, but I had.

“Why don’t we take this in here?” He motioned to the cupboard just off to the right. We walked inside and just as he shut the door, I thought I heard someone walking down the stairs—I presumed it was Lily.

“Remus,” I began, but he interrupted.

“Mute, I didn’t come here to talk about that,” he paused, looking to the ground, thinking. I raised my eyebrows just a bit and lowered my head a small fraction, inadvertently giving him a puppy-dog look. I didn’t actually mean to do it, but once I discovered that I was in mid-lip quiver, I didn’t try to stop it either. He looked back up and, taking in my countenance, looked back down, “incident. I just wanted to tell you that it’s all good and well. I don’t even care about that anymore.”

“Honestly?” I practically squealed, preparing to throw my arms around his neck. He nodded curtly. I threw myself at him, giving him a quick kiss on the cheek before I squeezed him to me.

His whole body stiffened.

I looked on, half absent, while he detangled himself from me, forcefully removing my arms from around his neck. My eyebrows furrowed, the sting of rejection seeping into my heart. I felt the need to vomit, and yet my throat was completely dry. Even my eyes couldn’t muster the strength to actually cry. “Remus?”

“I don’t think we understood one another,” his voice was calm and even, completely detached. His eyes were looking to the ground, blatantly refusing to make contact with my own wide and confused ones. “I meant that while I can look past the entire incident and accept your apologies, I’m afraid that I cannot find it within me to be as forgiving as to completely forget this event. I feel it best if we steady ourselves at a mature and respectable acquaintanceship.”

“You’re not making any sense,” I whimpered.

“Don’t I? Well, I’m afraid that is as clear as I feel I can make it. I hope in time you can come to completely understand the effects and repercussions of your actions, and inevitably mature and grow as a person. In the meantime, I can only offer a polite and distanced association.”

“You can’t do this,” I cried.

“Can’t I?” He yelled, his eyes flying up, for the first time meeting my own. His anger seemingly came from nowhere, and yet I knew all too well where this was leading to. “You’re saying that I can’t try to forgive and forget the best three months of my life if they were an elaborate charade? I can’t try to come to terms with the steaming pile of shit that you’ve bombarded upon my heart?”

I knew I’d hurt him, but I had no idea just how emotional he was. He had choked on the last word, making ‘heart’ sound like some form of curse.

“Remus, no, don’t do this to me again!” I shrieked.

“Mute, are you honestly playing victim? Well, I won’t try to mess up this self-pitying thing you have going on here, you’re obviously worse off than I am!” He trailed off towards the end and turned, attempting to leave. He opened the door and took a step outside.

“Remus Lupin, come back here! Don’t be a right git just because you’re angry!” I shouted, the slight Irish accent that I had been attempting to weed out of my mouth since I was ten crawled into my voice.

“Mute, don’t tell me what to do!” He was too angry. This was dangerous—it was never wise to argue with a werewolf.

“Remus, please, don’t be like this. You know that I could never intentionally hurt you! I wouldn’t have done that stupid dare in the first place if I had known that I would grow to love you so much,” I stepped towards him, reaching out to take his hand in mine, and surprised to find that he didn’t retract it or shrug away from me entirely. “You have to believe me when I say that I am not that horrible wench you’re making me out to be!”

“I know,” he sighed. Just when I thought all traces of anger were gone, he shouted, “but that doesn’t change the fact that you would have done this dare, that you did do it! It shows your true colors, Mute.”

“Don’t you love me, Remus?”

“Don’t use that on me,” he threatened. I ignored his tone, merely because he hadn’t removed his hand from mine. I stepped closer, sliding my hand up his arm to his shoulder.

“I promise I will never hurt you again,” I whispered in his ear, my own tears making it sound slightly slurred and rushed.

“Stop,” he breathed.

“I promise,” I whispered right before I let my lips touch his. He didn’t respond, and then…

I felt all of his anger burst into his lips, his hands coming to my waist, pulling me closer. He kissed me fiercely, his hand rubbing my back in a circular motion. I wrapped my arms around his neck and then raised myself slightly on my tiptoes. He devoured my lips, the kiss so rushed that I couldn’t breathe. I tilted my head and ran my hand through his hair.

“No!” Remus had pushed me away, hard. His eyes were dark red, his mouth was open, his fists were clenched.

“Hey!” A voice called.


It was the first time I’d ever been happy to see Camilla. She was by Remus’s side in seconds. And her fist collided with his face just instants later.

I stared, open mouthed, in completely shock.

“Get up, hun, let’s go.”

As Camilla hurried me to the hospital wing, I looked over my shoulder to see Remus staring at me, his expression so shocked and confused that I had to look away.


Wow, okay, harsh chapter.

Before you freak out, no, Remus is not an abusive boyfriend--he got extremely overwhelmed, and he had said before that when he gets angry, he isn't in control. It's a side-effect of being a werewolf in my story (refer to harsh, rough love scene).

So, I'm really sorry I took forever to update, and on top of that, this chapter isn't even that long! Gosh, LilyMaria, you really suck at giving the people what they want! 
uh...sorry?
I promise that the next few chapters will make up for this one, even though I don't think that this is too terrible.

And yes, the reviewer question is to try and get more ideas for the sequel...that being said, please review!
-love-
LilyMaria


Review Question: Is there anything from PAST chapters that you want to know more about, and/or wish you could have changed? 


Chapter 23: Chapter Twenty-Three. Camilla.
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As Lily hustled out of the room, I couldn’t help but feel like a big hypocrite. Who am I to be giving others love advice? I don’t even have an example of a functional relationship in my entire family, and yet, there I was barking orders.

I put my head in my hands and wondered to myself if I was doomed to be eternally alone. Perhaps I would find someone equally as unfortunate in the ways of the heart, but I somehow began to doubt that. My head turned to Elsie, who was staring at me with a bemused, and yet friendly smile on her face.

“I suppose you’re waiting for your advice?” I asked, my voice raspy. She nodded staring at me with her eyes blank.

I wondered if she had matured like the rest of us in this quest. I couldn’t remember much about before the dare had begun, as it all happened rather fast after the winter holiday was over. Elsie had always been rather absentminded, but never dumb. We were careful with her, as she was always playing the role of the baby sister. Even if she hadn’t become more intelligent throughout this damned bet, she was definitely not the baby she had been before. And that was my burden to bear.

“Well,” I sighed. “There’s really only one thing to do. You have to tell Peter. He won’t be happy, Els, but if you let one of the guys tells him instead of you, that will just be worse, understand?”

She nodded, looking down as she tangled her hands together. I looked at her for quite some time, taking in the lush hair and the full lips, the smaller, round, innocent eyes.

“Milla, I never blamed you. You know that?” She looked at me.

“Yeah,” I breathed, although I wasn’t sure if I had known that. It was just easier than saying how I really felt. Elsie wasn’t the right person to dish every little hypocritical, self-pitying thought to. Or, maybe she was? But this wasn’t the right time.

“Do you?” She half-smiled at me, her eyes suddenly brighter.

“Sure, El, sure,” I gave a soft chuckle as reassurance, and then continued, using my hands to shoo her. “Go on, get!”

She glanced at me as she walked over to the heavy wood door. “Milla?”

“What now?” I said in a low voice.

“You’re not as horrible as you think you are.”

And with that she was gone, to go tell the bloke she loved all the good news. Sarcasm, of course. I silently wished her heaps of good luck, knowing that if anyone deserved not to come to the dark side, or get their dreams tumbling down, it was sweet and simple Elsie.
I tucked in the last corner of blanket to my bed and then stood back to admire my handiwork. Adjusting the pillows just a tad bit, I let my mind graze over to the inconvenient facts. One, Sirius and I weren’t on good terms. Two, I’d ruined essentially everyone’s love lives. Three, I didn’t have a plan to get us out of this fix. Four, I was a wee bit hungry. I stumbled over a lone black shoe on my way to my trunk, which, instead of being at the foot of my bed like the other girls’, I’d moved to be just under the window.

My eyes glanced outward, flowing over the Black Lake, seeing the shady trees of the Forbidden Forest, the glass roofs of the Herbology green houses, and even a few yards of the grassy area that surrounded the castle, the space between lake and forest. A single tree was reflecting the sun’s rays off the newly green leaves that were beginning to come in on the branches. My eyes widened as I took in the sight in front of me.

It wasn’t the spring blossoms that astounded me, nor was it the moving of the tree branches several miles away that I spotted in the forest. None of this was surprising. It was the sight of two people, one sitting, one leaning over the other, underneath the shade of the tree.

Lily and Sirius were talking, I saw, and they weren’t yelling. Lily was talking, and Sirius was listening, and then all of a sudden Lily was standing. She dusted off her rear end and then wiped underneath her eyes, checking for makeup running. Sirius opened his arms, and she nearly fell into them.

I watched as she planted a quick kiss on his cheek and he rubbed her back. The shock of what was happening nearly had me toppling over, but then I saw Lily’s tear stricken face, Sirius’s mournful gaze. I couldn’t help but tell myself that what I was seeing was something that was innocent. And envy could kiss my ass, because I knew my best friend wouldn’t do this to me, especially with James in her heart. But still, it was all a bit too much to take in, and I found myself stumbling backward, away from the window.

I pulled my hair back with a ribbon and then pulled my shirt down a bit, preparing myself to go out. I didn’t know what exactly I was going to do, but I knew I had to get out of that dormitory.

I opened the thick door, pushing one foot ahead of the other and walking through the drafty corridor to the common room. I was about to round the corner when I hear what sounded like sobbing. There was a scuffling of feet and then a small little crash, and then came more crying and murmuring.

“No!” Came a booming voice which I recognized as Remus’s.

Just when I’d stepped out of the shadows, I saw, about ten feet away from me, Remus pushing Mute. She stumbled back, landing in a heap on the floor.

“Hey!” I shouted. I raced towards my friend, the ribbon falling away from my hair and making my artificial blonde locks fall into my eyes as I felt my arm begin to rise. Before I could have known what I was doing, my fist collided with Remus’s face, a sickening crack resounding against the stone walls and floor.

“Ow!” I breathed, doubling over and grabbing my hand. Don’t let the rumors fool you—punching someone in the face hurts really, horribly bad. But as soon as I saw Remus stumble backward and cup his face in his hands, I bent over Mute and grabbed her elbow with my good hand.

She was staring at me, complete shock and terror evident upon her face, her eyes flicking from me to Remus. I pulled her up harshly and then started to walk.

“Get up, hun, let’s go.”

She finally started to walk with me and then turned to stare back at the guy who’d just thrown her against a wall.

I felt anger and confusion bubble into my brain as I clutched Mute’s arm and walked to the hospital wing. All of this was coming so far—the bet, the sex, the blackmail, the Lily/Sirius rubbish, Mute being attacked by her lover, all this was so unexpected, so unprecedented.

“What was that all about?” I asked roughly.

“We fought, we kissed, and he got frustrated. I don’t know, Cam, it was so strange,” she sounded weak. I looked at her out of the corner of my eye and could see the build up of tears.

“What’s all this then?” Madame Pomfrey shrieked as we walking into the airy hospital wing. I looked around, wondering why she was so angry if we were the only patients she had to tend to right now.

“We, er, had an accident?” I tried. She didn’t bother asking anymore, as I sensed she knew we weren’t going to tell her.



A few hours later, I was walking away with a newly mended hand, wrapped securely in a cast for overnight healing. Mute was strolling beside me, her head down, glancing at the floor. She was merely bruised and confused, but physically in good shape.

“It’s not your fault, Mute, you know that?” I said.

She looked up at me, startled, it seemed, to have heard me utter a word. I looked back at her as we walked. 

“I know that Milla, I know. But, in some way I just never pictured Remus losing his temper. It is my fault!” She exclaimed, suddenly changing her countenance. “If I hadn’t pushed him over the edge, if I hadn’t kissed him and deceived him in the first place. I ruined him.”

“And I ruined you. You can't seriously blame yourself, Mute.”

“You didn’t ruin me. You freed me.”

“Are you mental?”

“I’m serious,” she glanced at me, her expression annoyed. “I was so dull before the bet. I had been on one date, had no experience, didn’t know anything about life. But now, I have…well, no, I don’t have Remus. I had him though, and that makes it somewhat bearable.”

“You lasses and your corny monologues. I swear, Elsie did the same thing. Telling me that I shouldn’t put all the negativity on myself for the bet. I say we just try to sort this out, and get on with out lives.”

“Wait, Camilla, I need to ask you something. Normally, I wouldn’t, but since it might be serious…well I need to know.”

“Go on,” I muttered, waiting to hear what she had to ask. Her eyes glanced up from the floor and then fluttered back down.

“Mil, what exactly is the ‘Or Else’?”

I stood there, in the middle of the grand staircase as the stairs we were on began to shift. My eyes were wide and almost filling with tears. I’d completely forgotten. I’m such a bitch.

“Mute, I don’t think you want to know.”

“I have to!” She exclaimed. “I need to know what I’m up against, since Remus and I…didn’t.”

“I’m so sorry,” I cried, tears streaming down my cheeks. I began to hastily wipe them away, completely aware that we weren’t alone, but were somewhat private, as no one else had joined us on this particular staircase.

“Tell me,” She closed her eyes, bracing herself for it.

I took a very deep breath, and then let it out in one quick sentence, “The or else was…you don’t get to stay with your guy.”

“Pardon?” Mute asked, not opening her eyes.

“Mute, I knew that it was inevitable that we’d grow attached. I just…didn’t think anyone wouldn’t be able to do it. I needed to make it somewhat motivating for myself! I knew that it wasn’t actually a bad thing for me, as I don’t think I’m staying with Sirius anyway, but I knew that if I hyped it up to be something terrible, well you’d want to get it over with so you wouldn’t have to face it. I’m so sorry.”

“So…I won’t be with Remus?” Her voice sounded heartbroken, confused, yet strangely detached.

“All this fighting, the feelings that you’re having, the simple split, it’s all because of me. Remus wants to be with you, he wants to forget this all and just be with you, because he loves you. I know it. But…the contract was magically binding. The feelings he has won’t overpower the magic that’s telling him otherwise,” I sniffled. “I made sure of it.”

Mute stared up at me, her wide chocolate brown eyes burning into mine like fire into my heart. I felt terrible.

“Milla…I…I need to go.”

I watched her walk calmly away from me up the staircases. I didn’t move, I just slumped down, crouching into a ball and sobbing as the stairs once again began to shift and people climbed all around me. Students walked upward and downward, all of them noticeably gazing at me, but none of them seeing me. 




So, this chapter was really dramatic, as were the last few. And I'm sorry about that. Haha, but I really think it's essential that we get past all the confessions and heartbreaking to get to a resolution. 

Well, you all finally got to know what the 'Or Else' is. Mute and Remus will not be ending up together. I can practically hear all the hearts breaking. I'm sorry guys. I set the OR Else and who was going to complete the dare before everyone began becoming attached to the couple. 

That being said, even though I know you're probably disappointed, I hope you enjoyed the chapter. Please review.

-Love-
LilyMaria


Chapter 24: Chapter Twenty-Four. Elsie.
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“So…what do you think?” I asked him. Peter looked at me, confused and somewhat blank. I waited a few moments, tempted to wave a hand in front of his face. “Peter?”

“Yeah?” He asked, completely bemused.

“I…well, I just wanted to know what you were thinking?” I asked again.

“What do I think,” it wasn’t a question, but more of a statement. He was searching through his brain, looking for any trace of emotion that could be useful at this time.

As I waited for him to continue, I let my mind wander back. I briefly contemplated over how everything with the others was going.

“Elsie, I love you.” Definitely not what I thought he’d say. “And I know that you love me.”

“I do! I really do!” I exclaimed, perhaps a bit too happily. He took a deep breath before continuing.

“So why should I let this ruin us? If you say that it doesn’t mean anything anymore, then it doesn’t.”

“Oh, Peter!” I threw my arms around him. He detached himself, smirking just a bit.

“But, you’re on probation.”

“What?” I looked at him, confused. “Probation?”

“If the whole purpose of our relationship was sex, then I think we should stop that until I’m sure you’ve learned your lesson,” he smirked.

“Oh,” I smirked, putting a hand on his shoulder. “Okay, I agree.”

He smiled to himself, obviously happy with himself. I let my hand fall from his shoulder to his hand, gripping it a bit and looking into his eyes. Then without a warning at all, I lightly let my hand crawl, as though my middle and index fingers were legs, onto his lap. After a good minute he finally let out a breath, his eyes clouding over a bit.

“I think you’ve learned your lesson,” he took hold of my hand and pulled me up with him. I squealed as we raced up the staircase that led to the dorms.

Peter pushed the heavy wooden door open and as soon as we were in the safety of his dormitory, he pulled me to him by putting his arms around my waist. I giggled, kissing him.

“Not smart, mate,” a voice came from one of the beds, and I had to look around to figure out which one. Peter and I separated and stood there, a bit shocked.

“Prongs?” Peter asked, his hand falling back onto my waist, pulling me again over to stand by his side. “You all right?”

“Oh, I’m keen as mustard, Wormtail,” James sighed, his head falling back against the wall. I saw now that he was sitting on his bed, his legs spread out, his arms hanging uselessly at his sides.

“Wormtail?” I looked up at Peter, suddenly wondering what this strange nickname meant.

He smiled down at me for a second before saying, “I’ll tell you later.”

“James I thought you were with Lily?” I asked.

He let out a low chuckle, “No, no, she’s elsewhere.”

“Obviously?” I let out.

“You mocking me?” He asked, although I couldn’t be sure if he was serious. And then all of a sudden, I could see where his anger and aggression was coming from. It was as though a torch had clicked on in my mind.

“She told you,” I said, not bothering to add the questioning tone.

“Yeah she bloody well told me. Have you told him yet?” His chin flicked upward towards Peter, and I nodded.

“Yeah,” I paused, taking a look at Peter. I smiled and he gave a tiny, almost nonexistent smile of encouragement. “Yeah, I did.”

“Pete, how could you just let it slide?” James addressed the other boy, who had sat down on his own four poster bed and was looking down at his hands. “She lied to you, mate. They all lied to us.”

“And she told me the truth,” Peter looked up, his eyes meeting James’s own hazel eyes. I could see the reflection from the window on James’s glasses. "She regrets it."

“Oh, really?” James spat cynically.

“Peter understands that I love him. That I wouldn’t do anything to hurt him, and that I was involved in that bet way before I’d known how amazing he was. Well,” I paused, thinking back. “That’s not entirely true; I did like him a bit before Camilla suggested the dare.”

“How can you trust her?” James thought aloud it seemed, not even looking at Peter. 


“Lily loves you James. She loves you more than I think she loves anybody, and she did that all on her own. She needed to sleep with you, and she did, and then she stayed with you. She could have dumped you that afternoon, do you realize that?” I asked him. I could literally see the thought process in his eyes. “James, she’d never hurt you," I said.

A Minute passed, and then I added, "she’d never have agreed to that bet if she could have possibly known how much she would grow to care about you.”

“She loves me,” He breathed.

“Isn’t that what you wanted along, mate?” Peter asked, standing up again to come and put his arm around my shoulders.

“She loves me,” James said again, this time looking up into my eyes.

I stared at him for a long time. I don’t know if it was seconds or minutes, but our eyes were locked for a very long time. Peter used a bit of strength and pulled me closer, planting a kiss on my temple. I swayed a bit, but my eyes remained locked with James’s.

And then, I said quickly, “Go, James.”

And he got up. He stood there, swayed a bit on the spot, and then he let a hand come up and brush through his hair. I watched as he repositioned his glasses, rolled up his sleeves, and then stumbled out of the dorm.

“I can’t believe it!” I beamed up at Peter.

“That he could ever doubt her?” he guessed.

“No,” I shook my head, my smile growing wider. “I actually helped!”

“Right,” he laughed, kissing me quickly and grabbing my hands, tugging me over to his bed. “Now where were we?” 



Oh, Elsie, Elsie, Elsie. How your sweet little mind amazes me...I know this chapter was super short and you were all probably expecting some kind of awesome show-down or something....that's coming. 

I liked this chapter, because I think it shows Peter's character a bit better--he was a really sweet and cool guy. (Just so you know, I don't have a theory as to why Peter would betray James and Lily other than that he was scared, and I don't intend to add anything to show his cowardice and cruelty in this story). 

Thank you so much to everyone who has review! I'm trying to respond to all of them, so keep checking back! Thank you guys!

Please review!
-love-
LilyMaria


Reviewer Question: What do you think about Peter's reaction? Good or not mad enough?


Chapter 25: Chapter Twenty-five. Lily.
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As we made our way out of the castle, I couldn’t help but wonder what exactly his intentions were. We walked down the grand staircase, my eyes flickering from his face to the portraits on the walls, and for the first time I felt that this was a mistake.

My mind flew back, and in one giant montage showed me the past two months. I saw James’s face when I told him I was with his best mate, I saw his bright eyes when I confessed that it was a lie and that I was after him, I saw his swollen lips after we kissed for a full two hours a few nights ago, and then I saw his eyes, so close to tears that it was unnatural.

Sirius opened the door for me and I stepped out after muttering a brief thank you. The chill spring air met my nose and it tickled for a few moments as we continued through the courtyard and across the bridge. I looked out at the Black Lake and saw that it was abnormally calm.

“Right here’s fine,” Sirius said after we’d walked by a rather tall tree. He blew his hair out of his eyes with a deep exhale and then leaned against the trunk of the tree.

“You know?” I asked with my head bowed towards the ground. I kept my eyes on a single blade of grass.

“Yeah,” he answered in a sigh. I nodded and then wondered what this was about.

I sat down on the grass and leaned against the trunk of the tree, waiting for Sirius to continue.

“Do you remember back in the beginning of the year when we pulled that rubbish prank on McGonagall?” He looked at the lake and at the forest, his seemed rather distant. It was as though I could hear his words but he was out on the other side of the water, far away from me and all my problems. “So that all reflective surfaces she looked into would scream at her? Prongs got three weeks of detention for it. It was my idea, but he thought that since he did the magic that he should take the fall. Naturally, McGonagall knew that he couldn’t have thought it up.”

I sat patiently and listened, not so much remembering the memories but listening to Sirius’s.

“Because that’s the difference between James Potter and Sirius Black—although we both do wrong, bad things, he has some kind of conscience. I do too, don’t get me wrong, but it’s different with him. He’s always been the one everyone loves, the charmer. James is the charmer, Remus is the sensitive bookworm, Peter’s the adorable silent type, and Sirius? He’s the player. That’s how it’s been since fourth year. No one bothered to get to know us as anything else.”

I looked down at my hands which were wringing themselves in my lap. There was a strange noise from my right, where the Forbidden Forest was, but I ignored it to continue listening to Sirius.

“And then this little fiery sprite came into James’s life. He bloody well loved you first time you screamed at him. Because you resisted the charm. And then he tried going out of his way to impress you, get to know you, and made a complete arse out of himself. And you continued to hate him, because he was imprinted in your mind as something different—a pompous arrogant little toe rag. Do you see where I’m going with this?”

I looked up, suddenly surprised to hear him speaking directly to me. I blinked, “Not really, no.”

“Me neither. Look, Camilla and I—we’re one in the same. We both scheme and let others take the fall for our foolishness. Because of your ruddy friend, my best mate’s holed up in his dorm in pitch black contemplating whether to be furious or happy,” Sirius sighed, his eyes traveling upward to glance at Gryffindor Tower.

“Sirius, can I tell you something?” I asked quietly.

“Of course, love,” he gave me his trademark grin and I took a deep breath.

“I love James. I love him so much,” I wasn’t even on the verge of crying before, but suddenly I was sobbing. “And it’s all turned to shit!”

“Hey,” he put a hand on the top of my head and began to smooth my hair down. “He loves you too, he’s just overwhelmed.”

“Why aren’t you like the rest of them? I mean, Remus and James all threw a fit, but you kept your cool. Should I be taking advice from Camilla or something on how to tell a guy stuff?” I asked, wiping my eyes.

“I…don’t think I’ve really let it settle yet.” But it came out quickly enough for me to realize that this statement wasn’t true.

“Yeah?” I asked skeptically through a few sniffles.

“Just between you and me?” he looked down at me and locked me into a very intense gaze.

“Of course.”

“I can’t get that wench out of my head,” he breathed. He ran a hand through his hair, making it look handsomely misshapen. “I mean she screwed me and my mates over, she’s ruined eight lives, and yet I can’t stop thinking about how she just…got me.”

“Maybe you’re meant to be together?” I asked.

“Please,” he scoffed. “I don’t believe in happy endings.”

“That’s terrible!” I stared up at the bloke as he leaned on the tree a bit more.

“It’s reality. I mean, I thought that my life was going to go in one direction and it went in another—no happy ending. I thought that the girl I loved…liked returned my affection but I was wrong—no happy ending. I thought I was going to be somebody…”

“Sirius, Camilla love-likes you too! I know that she does, you should just go talk to her. And, you are somebody! You’re bloody Sirius Black for crying out loud! Trust me, Sirius, one day every wizard and witch will know your name!” I wiped under my eyes and then stood up, dusting off my pants.

“Backatcha Red,” he opened his arms and I laughed as some more tears came gushing out of my eyes. I fell into a nice, friendly hug and cried a little into his robe.

“Oh,” I sighed as I stumbled away from him. “This day has been so strange.”

“Hang in there, Lily.” Sirius smirked, backing away from me and tilting his head in the direction of the castle behind me. I turned around and saw James.

“James,” I whispered in spite of myself. A small, meek smile broke out across my face and I dared to walk a few steps towards him. James took his hand and ruffled it through his hair. He had a very nervous smile on his face and I couldn’t see his eyes because the glare from the sun was obstructing my vision. He walked to me and I walked to him and we met in the middle.

“Lily,” he began. I relished his voice and closed my eyes very briefly to savor my name on his tongue.

“James, before you begin, I just need you to know that I love you more than I could ever have imagined and that this wasn’t my idea and I’m really, really dreadfully sorry!” I pleaded in one breath.

“Are you finished?” he asked, his face very serious. I took a moment to step away from him and think.

“I love you, wasn’t my idea, sorry—yeah I’m finished,” I said, stepping towards him a tiny bit.

“Good,” he breathed before putting his hand on the crook of my neck and his other hand on my cheek, guiding my face towards his. He smiled just in time for me to see it before our lips met.

As soon as the fire erupted over me, I threw my arms up and wrapped them around his neck. I closed my eyes and tilted my head just a little to the right. I worried for a moment whether I was imagining this, but then I heard James making a few noises to let me know he was enjoying himself. I nibbled on his bottom lip, moving my hands down a bit to pull him closer to me.

“I’ll just leave you two alone then,” Sirius coughed, walked a little too slowly away. Then he seemingly got a change of heart. “Who am I ki—“

James and I broke away from each other and shouted, “Go!”

“Right, I’ve got a girl to go talk to!” Sirius laughed, racing away towards the castle.

James encircled my waist with his arm and then pulled me over to him. I smiled brightly as he leaned forward to give me another kiss.

“What changed your mind?” I asked.

“Elsie and Peter, actually,” he laughed and kissed me again.

“Who-duh-thunk-it” I whispered before leaning back towards him, a teasing smile on my lips.

~*~

James and I sat, his arm around my shoulders and my head on his shoulder, staring out at the lake, our backs against the trunk of the tree. The setting sun provided a romantic atmosphere, but somehow the chilly air kept things comfortable.

“Oh!” He pulled away from me abruptly. “I almost forgot!”

James grabbed my hand and kissed it. I stared into his eyes, completely dumbfounded. His gaze traveled to my finger, which made my own eyes look there as well.

“My ring!” I screamed, throwing my arms around him. "I lost this months ago!"

“I’m just sorry I didn’t have the courage to give it back to you sooner,” he kissed the top of my head as I settled back down.

“What other things have you been hiding from me?” I asked, smiling as I fiddled with my ring.

“I’ll tell you everything one day, I promise,” he gazed down at me.

“Pinky-promise?” I asked.

“Yes, of course.” He gave me a kiss that I could feel all the way down in my toes and then we walked hand in hand back to the castle.

Wow! I'm so excited to post this chapter, because that means that the next three chapters will be....the last! Ack! Are you excited? I'm excited. I'm going to have three more chapters and then a special epilogue-ish thingy. 

-love-
LilyMaria

Reviewer Question: Which of the girls' Point of View do you like most?


Chapter 26: Chapter Twenty-Six. Mute.
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I ran from the staircase into the library where I collided with a chair. After cursing the wooden piece, I sat down on it. The tears were instantaneous, and I couldn’t really control them, or me for that matter. My makeup was running but I didn’t have the stamina or will to wipe it away. It didn’t matter.

I didn’t know what to do. Should I go to him and explain? Should I stay here and mope? Should I go to Camilla, throw a rope around his skinny little neck, and pull? Nothing seemed to work in my head. No scenario was appropriate. The day outside was beautiful, exactly the type of day I would have been enjoying, but my mood wasn’t heightened or cheered by the clear blue sky outside. It was lessened.

I pulled at my hair, feeling a few strands actually break loose from my skull and stay in my hands. This was so frustrating. I flicked the hairs away impatiently and looked around. No one was staring, but that didn’t mean that everyone was ignoring me either. I probably looked like a right tosspot, pulling out my hair and sobbing uncontrollably.

I saw some Ravenclaw look up and give me a worried glance—which I returned with a glare. She didn’t understand, and she probably never would. I was losing the guy I loved because of some contract, and he didn’t even know it. He was probably being forced into hating me.

I looked down at my hands and sighed deeply. Why was I even in the library—it’s not the place I would ever choose to come and cry. That’s what lavatories are for. I looked over to my right where Remus and I had studied just a few nights ago for the upcoming Herbology exam. It wasn’t exactly a productive session; we’d snogged most of that time. Over to my left was the small couch where we’d come down with James’s invisibility cloak and snogged, with Pince just a few meters away.

We wouldn’t do that ever again though.

I stood and started walking to the door, knowing full-well why I’d come into the library, and also knowing that I couldn’t possibly stay in the room where most of my happiness with Remus was spent. The common room was too risky. The great hall was a disaster waiting to happen. The grounds, the greenhouses, the empty classroom on the third floor—everywhere I could possibly travel, I was met by memories of him.

I strode quietly downward, taking two staircases to get to the lower level dungeons. The walls were somewhat colder and the air was thicker, as one might expect. I stepped off the very last step and shuffled a little over to the wall, where a suit of armor was standing in an alcove. A few Slytherin students strutted past me, but I attempted to ignore their hasty glares. If I wasn’t me, I’d probably dislike me as well.

I strolled numbly into the potions classroom where Slughorn was joyously teaching a class. I sat down on a stack of books large enough to be an actual chair, and I watched silently as he droned on in an enthused tone about the wonders of the Pepper-Up Potion, a topic I’d studied not too long ago. He continued to talk, smiling at students who answered, and tsking at students who mumbled or blew the entire assignment off.

I looked to my left, seeing Sluhorn’s magical shelf of achievements—the students he predicted would one day become important figures in magical history, the ones who excel. Lily smiled at me and waved awkwardly as she shuffled a bit closer to the rest of the group. I was never on the shelf, nor would I ever be. I’d never even though about excelling, it wasn’t something I strived for.

Perhaps that was an issue, I thought as I began to evaluate myself. Setting the bar too low, and never quite bothering to jump. I looked at Lily’s picture, watching as it replayed over and over, the scene becoming a bit more interesting each time. Did I not succeed merely because I expected myself not to? My mind wandered back to the second week that Remus and I had been dating. I’d started doing better in my classes because I would remember him when remembering answers. He believed in me, therefore I believed in me. But now that he was gone, I had nothing more to believe in.

I was a beautiful portrait in a large puzzle that was missing pieces. I briefly contemplated whether or not Remus was having the same difficulties as I was. If perhaps he was struggling to remember the person he was before we were together.

“Mute Connelly, is it?” I heard the professor ask. I jumped a bit, ripped away from my reverie.

“Yes, sir.”

“Well, do you need anything?” He asked, a funny smile playing upon his face.

“Actually sir,” I paused, thinking. “Have you ever heard of a magical contract?”

“Yes, of course,” he smiled, as if this was absurd.

“Are those…well, what I’m trying to ask is…how long do those last?”

“You must be joking?” He asked incredulously. I shook my head, and he continued with a tone that was more bemused than anything else. “Forever, my dear. Magical contracts are the single most poignant forms of contract in our worlds, disregarding unbreakable vows. They are impossible to rid oneself of, I’m afraid.”

I nodded, my slight polite smile deepening into a frown as each word processed through my brain. I stared down at the ground, looking on as my feet contracted themselves into fitting into the shapes of the stone that made up the floor. Sunlight was coming through the windows in sharp rays, and I had to shield my eyes every now and then when they caught a reflection.

“I’m hoping you haven’t made the mistake of signing or creating one?” He was cautious, as he should be.

For a moment I considered telling him the truth, telling him everything about the contract and my ex-boyfriend, and everything. But as much as I would enjoy watching Camilla hauled out of the castle like the cargo she was, I couldn’t do it. Something in my throat locked and words wouldn’t form in my mouth, or on my lips. I merely smiled and shook my head, tossing in a, “No, no, just wondering.”

“Yes, well, you better be running to dinner, dear. I hear it’s pumpkin pie for dessert tonight!” He rubbed his hands together and licked his lips excitedly. I smiled politely and excused myself, walking away from the dark, humid dungeons and the answers that I didn’t want to hear.

I skipped dinner. I don’t know if it was because I wasn’t hungry or if I just didn’t want to face him, but instead of walking to the Great Hall, I continued past up to the common room.

Imagine my surprise when I found the person I’d been avoiding.

“Hey,” Remus said, the bruise on his face reflecting a bit in the fire. I held back a smile when I saw it, which was strange as I should have been upset that my best friend punched my boyfriend.

“Hi,” I replied, walking a bit too quickly towards the staircase.

“We can’t even talk?” he asked. I turned around and saw that he was standing now. His tie was almost all the way undone and his sleeves were rolled up to his elbows—my favorite look. I stared at him for just a few moments, alternating between his eyes and the bruise on the left side of his face.

“What do you want to talk about? My back’s already bruised, Remus, I can’t afford to get pushed into anymore walls,” I backed away a step.

“I didn’t mean to do that. You know that if I’d been in control, I would have never,” he put two fingers to the space on either side of his nose, near his eyes. A sigh came from his mouth, echoing in my ears long after the actual sound had dissolved.

“I know,” I whispered.

“Then why are you so angry?” he asked. I knew he would hear me. Bloody werewolf hearing.

“Why am I so angry? You’re asking me why I’m angry?” I snapped with a tone I couldn’t identify. I took a step forward, the books I’d been carrying in my hand slipping onto the couch.

“Yeah?”

“I can’t believe you!” I breathed. “You were ready to tear my head off the other day, you threw me against a wall earlier, and you haven’t spoken to me but to simply tell me off ever since you found out! I know it was a shock, believe me it wasn’t what I wanted to happen, but get over yourself, Remus.”

“Me get over myself? What about you, Mute?” He snapped, taking a step towards me.

“What about me? I said I was sorry, and that’s it. Why can’t you leave me alone and let me be?” I felt the tears well up in my eyes despite the continuing mantra in my head of don’t cry, don’t cry, don’t cry!

“Because,” he snuffed.

“Why?”

“I don’t know! Part of me loves you so much and part of me wants to hate you, and I don’t know why!” He sat down, his head falling into his open hands.

“I know why.”

“Oh, really?”

“We signed a contract. The penalty for not completing the seduction was that you couldn’t stay with your guy. I told you the truth hoping that it wouldn’t be so bad, but now that I know you can’t be with me, I just wish we’d done it before I’d come clean.” I paused. “I’m sorry, that’s a horrible thing to say.”

“Yeah it is.”

“Yeah,” I sighed, sitting down on the couch.

“So I can’t get over this because I’m bewitched by a contract?” He asked, looking up at me finally.

I nodded, staring into his eyes and waiting.

“But I loved you,” I cringed as I heard the past tense, but found it within me to look him in the eye.

“I loved you,” I said.

“Okay. So where do we go from here?” he asked, running a hand through his hand and sitting up straighter. His posture reminded me of a political figure preparing to debate the pros and cons of an issue.

“We can be friends?” I volunteered. His face grew a little more solemn, but eventually he nodded and held out a hand for me to shake.

“Friends.”

I smiled sadly at him, shaking his hand. The skin to skin contact made me excited, a fact which I felt guilty for even feeling. I relished the entire episode, knowing that somewhere in all this heartbreak, confusion, and sorrow was a lesson that I had to learn. But for now I didn’t care. All that mattered was that this kind of sucked. 


Two or three more chapters folks! 
Thank you so much to everyone who has reviewed--once, twice, or every chapter. It all means to much to me and I cannot tell you enough how much this entire process of writing Bragging Rights has taught me. I'm a better writer because of this story and because of all your feedback, which I continue to enjoy receiving. I don't mean to sound cheesy, but it's been a great journey! 

Thanks again :)
-love-
LilyMaria

Reviewer Question: What do you think is going to happen next chapter with Camilla and Sirius?! :)


Chapter 27: Chapter Twenty-Seven. Camilla.
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Sometimes when life gives you lemons, you can’t help but wonder why it didn’t give you something more useful. Like a sense of humor, or money, or the courage one needs to face up to what they’ve done, and ask for forgiveness. But, of course, that’s too sensible. After everything that I’ve done, I have to make fucking lemonade.

I sat down in the common room, thinking about, strangely enough, not Sirius, but Ken Kroger. Was I happy that I was over him and that I’d fallen for someone else? Was I over him? I know that I thought I was, but somehow it just seemed hard to look back on the past few months and not truly think that it was all for him.

I brushed a hand through a lock of my hair and saw that the deep brown roots had progressed down, and my hair was a mixture of faded strawberry blonde and deep mahogany. It was a cliché metaphor depicting how I felt. The brown was who I truly was, and the blonde was who I’d tried to be. Underneath it all, maybe I just should realize that no matter how much I try to change who I really am, the roots will always put in a fight to appear.

I laughed to myself, thinking about how after just a few months, my thoughts had somehow formed a more philosophical nature. That was wrong though, as I was no deeper than the average human being, and it would always be dumb of me to assume I was. I coughed a bit and turned to the side, looking at the fire and watching it burn. The cackling that ensued reassured me. It was a sound I knew all too well.

I tugged at the silver ring that was on my middle finger, I sighed several times, and I change the position I was sitting in at least four times before I heard it. A clopping of sorts, a hip-hopping that was coming closer and closer—footsteps. I looked at the portrait whole, waiting, watching, hoping. And it wasn’t a surprise, but rather a dream come true when I saw him race through it. I caught my breath and watched him, my eyes widening and somehow blurring about the edges.

“Milla,” he breathed as his eyes fell upon me. I felt my brow furrow and waited. “Milla, I’m so…I didn’t even get to react really, and I realize now that I can’t be so…and you didn’t mean to do anything that was…that bastard broke your heart, and you…well, what do you say?”

I stared at him in silence. The meek, rambling, and altogether strange apology was both unexpected and glorious. Sirius was sitting, or rather kneeling in front of me, his hair matted to his forehead as spring had begun and it had likely gotten much warmer. I stared into his gray eyes, the eyes that both taunted and mesmerized me. It wouldn’t be easy, I thought. We argued, we’d never had a real conversation, and we’d likely break up before the month was out.

“We can’t be together,” I whispered, more to myself, but he heard and I watched as his face fell.

“After all that?” I knew what he meant. It was impossible to ignore the fact that we’d been tested already. If we endured all that we had, it seemed ethical enough that we should eventually come together. But my gut was telling me this wasn’t what needed to happen.

“Sirius, we fight. We bicker. We don’t talk much. We haven’t done much else than snog and shag. We’re a mess, and I don’t know if we’ll even have a functional relationship,” I confessed. The words piled out rather quickly, but I didn’t doubt they were already planted in his mind long before I’d whet the inkling.

“But I think…I love you?” It wasn’t supposed to be a question, but that’s how it came out. I sighed and crossed my legs, putting a hand under my chin and leaning forward.

“And that’s unnatural as hell,” I muttered.

“Look, all I’m doin’ is telling you how I feel, alright, so if you could just listen,” he began, but I interrupted him.

“Sirius, you’re starting an argument.”

“You don’t have to be all matter-of-fact about it,” he mumbled getting up and sitting on the other end of the couch. I turned to face him, criss-crossing my legs under me and pulling my hair back quickly. A few strands fell out of place.

Sirius took his finger and brushed them back, folding them behind my ear. His fingers remained there, making my skin heat and my eyes urge to roll. Why was it that we couldn’t be within the same vicinity without being completely crazed? I took hold of his hand in my and held it gently, looking into his eyes and waiting.

A sudden thought came into his mind. I knew it because his eyes went from looking down to looking up rather quickly.

“Conclusion,” I muttered as he opened his mouth to speak.

“Friends with benefits?” he proposed. Gee, what an invitation, I thought. The thought was revolting in my mind—a person used merely for pleasure, and then discarded once something ‘serious’ came up. How charming a notion.

“I’ll try it,” I shrugged my shoulder, sounding a bit too nonchalant. I saw him go over the last few moments in his mind and laughed to myself, thinking back to when I narrowed this guy down to a science, calculating every decision and move before it stumbled into his mind.

Now, there was no calculation. I knew it after it happened. I sighed, and rubbed my thumb over the palm of his hand, feeling the calluses that he’d built up from sports.

When he kissed me I didn’t fight it or try to time it to a precision. I was unraveling, and that was okay. 


Wow! Okay, so here is a very short chapter. I'm so sorry about the wait. I've been super sick with pneumonia and I've been slightly banner from the computer. And when I've managed to sneak over, I usually focus on new stories (stupid me) but I finally did this! So, just a few chapter left!

Gosh, can you believe that in two months it will have been a year since I began writing this story? Oh how time flies!!! I hope you enjoyed it as much as I have!
-love-
LilyMaria

oh, and p.s: If you have enjoyed Bragging Rights, please check out my other stories. I have a brand new one--Solidarity--which I'm hoping will be very good. Thanks!!


Please review!


Chapter 28: Chapter Twenty-Eight. Elsie.
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Peter kissed my cheek quickly as I turned my head to look into the fire. It was roaring beautifully, which was a little strange. It was the hottest day of the year so far and little beads of sweat were pooling onto everyone’s foreheads. I used the back of my hand to wipe the moistness off, and then I turned to the bright window.

“Shut it?” I asked the fifth year who sat by it. We all wished for the fire to stop, but it strangely continued to roar. I turned to Peter, “Where are they?”

He pulled out some kind of parchment and tapped it, whispering something. His eyes glanced over it while I debated whether it was right of me to look or not. I was his girlfriend but just because of that did it mean I was privileged to look into his business? No, I decided. I glanced at the couch we were sitting on and absentmindedly picked off a few stray threads off of the fabric. I sighed as Peter tapped the parchment once more and smiled proudly to himself.

I looked at him with a raised eyebrow and waited while he put two and two together and then answered finally, “Padfoot’s the closest, Moony is upstairs, Mute’s coming in a few minutes, and Prongs is probably snogging Lily in the corridor by the Arithmancy classroom.”

“Do they even care that we’re waiting?” I asked as I tucked a strand of Peter’s dirty blonde hair behind his ear, thinking about how he needed a haircut, and loving the fact that he hadn’t gotten one yet.

“Except for Moony, I’m thinking yeah.”

The portrait hole opened at that moment and I hiccupped. Covering my mouth with my hand, I watched as Sirius and Camilla walked in, far apart from each other. Sirius plopped down on the armchair to our left and asked me, “Did you just hiccup?”

“Yeah,” I felt a red twinge coming onto my cheeks, but I knew I didn’t have a reason to be embarrassed.

“Does it mean you’re going to cry?” Sirius asked.

Camilla, who sat on the armrest of Sirius’s chair, added, “Or that you’re going to vomit?”

“No, no,” I put a hand up, “It just means that I will possibly hiccup again.”

Suddenly Lily entered with James’s arm wrapped around her shoulders, a bright smile across her pale face. I bit my lip to keep from smiling too widely, but it was rather difficult not to. James used whatever power he had over her to pull her head to the side and give me a kiss. She laughed and then pulled away, sitting beside Peter on the couch, James then looked at her for a long while. She sighed, got up, watched James sit down where she had been, and then sat on his lap. He picked up her legs and swung them over to the side, beaming as he did so. 

Sirius shook with laughter while Camilla tsked at Lily, who merely blushed and leaned back against the armrest of the couch. I looked up to the portrait hole, waiting anxiously for Mute to walk in. I hadn’t seen her since last night when I’d woken up to find her sobbing. I tried my best to comfort her, but I don’t think it went well.

Peter stroked my hair and made small talk with his mates. Camilla was fastidiously trying to manage her own hair, which looked a bit odd now that the beauty spells were wearing off. But it somehow suited her. I watched as she leaned against Sirius for a moment, and then away just as he began to mold around her. She kept this up for ten minutes whilst we waited for the last two to arrive.

I didn’t blame her for not coming. With the rest of us seemingly getting our happy endings just as we wanted, it had to be hard for Mute. I hiccupped again just as I thought back to her sobbing, distraught face last night. Mentally, I pictured Remus upstairs, pacing, reading, trying to keep his mind off the feelings his heart most definitely was having. I never used to think about other people. I just thought about things.

A collective kind of thought process is what I called my mind. I didn’t have words in my heads sometimes. Lily tells me that’s impossible. That by not thinking, I’m thinking about not thinking. She’s wrong. Sometimes I just stare at the wall and it is absolute peace inside my mind. And Peter thinks that’s nice.

I heard the portrait hole opening and thought for sure that it wasn’t Mute. Most of the kids were either roaming around outside or in their common rooms, and if Mute didn’t want to be here, she had plenty of other choices. But lo and behold it was her.

Her chocolate brown eyes were a little red and lined too heavily, but her lips were naked and chapped. There was a piece of her hair sticking up just a bit and her clothes were too baggy on her, but that’s just how she wore them not because she’d lost weight. Mute likes food too much to get turned off by it. Just like me with my brilliant shakes.

She sat down in the remaining armchair, her eyes on us but her mind looking and watching for Remus. Camilla asked her how she was feeling, to which she answered fine. Lily told her that the polish on her fingernails was an interesting color, to which she answered thanks. Peter asked what time it was, to which she answer two.

I cleared my throat with a high pitched sound and then scooted away from the back of the couch, slouching a bit. I looked around the circle and grinned, “So here we are.”

“All of us,” Lily beamed like this was all because of her.

“Together,” Camilla beamed because it was.

Sirius and Mute exchanged a look. Something deep and indescribable. At least to me anyway. Then, and this was a surprise to everyone, Mute let out a small laugh. And Sirius barked a bit with laughter, shaking Camilla who had finally just rested against him. The entire circle erupted.

“Peter, Elsie, plans?” Mute asked. I didn’t know if I should tell her that Peter invited me to go to Poland with him after graduation, if that would depress her.

“We’re staying together, if that’s what you’re asking,” Peter said plainly. Mute gave us a small smile and her eyes lit up. It hit me now that she was truly and sincerely happy for us if not happy herself.

“And you two?” she asked Camilla and Sirius. He put an arm around her shoulders and she shivered for some reasons, giving him a look that suggested that such an incident was something between them, an inside joke.

Sirius barked a laugh and then said, “We’re takin it day by day, ya know? I mean, she’s a bit touchy, but I’m going to just work my way up, ya know?”

Camilla sighed and shook her head, but turned and gave him a kiss on the cheek all the same.

Mute turned to Lily and she answered without being asked, “We’re in love and he’s reformed. What more could I want?”

“A Nimbus 750? Yeah, me too,” James and Sirius slapped hands and laughed.

I turned the question on Mute.

“I’m leaving for a while. Going to Dublin to visit my cousin, and then I’m thinking about coming back or going to work there, dunno. Either way I’m gonna pave my way, hopefully.” I stared at Mute as she said it and watched the lights behind her eyes dim slightly, hoping just for a moment that they would be happy like her words. But they weren’t.

“You better write,” I told her. And she gave me a soft smile. And that meant that she wouldn’t.

“And floo me at least three times a year depending on how long you’re there. I’ll give you the address of my flat I’m getting,” Lily conjured a quill and short bit of parchment. Mute took it when she was done.

“Don’t call me. Don’t floo me.” Camilla said with a deadpan voice. And then she added after we all stared at her in horror, “oh, er, because I’m coming up there to see you.”

“I’d like that,” Mute smiled. They shared a look. I could never tell with girls. I knew that I was one of them, but for some reason the catfights were just a bit out of my realm. But I understood then what the look meant. It meant that honesty was there. I liked that quite a bit. Actually, I liked that a lot.

“I’m going to study for a few years and be a professor I think,” Remus’s voice came floating from the stairs. We all turned to see him, looking weak but holding up.

“Fits ya, mate,” Sirius smirked.

“Yeah, thanks,” Remus said with unintentional sarcasm.

“So that’s it then?” Lily asked, her voice growing softer. “After graduation, we’re all just going our separate ways?”

“That’s the way it is,” Mute gave a weak, apologetic smile. “Sometimes it’s for the better.”

There was no mistaking who that comment was meant for, but Remus didn’t flinch, merely nodded.

“Bullocks,” James barked. “We four aren’t splitting up anytime soon, ladies, so if you expect to never see each other, I think that’s shit.”

“Watch your language,” Lily hit him playfully on the arm. They laughed a little and then looked about them.

“Definitely,” Remus coughed.

~*~

The graduation ceremony was the most beautiful event I ever witnessed. Students sat in their house colors, receiving their honors as their name was called. Professors cried. James and Slughorn shook hands and called a truce. Sirius, James, Remus, and Peter all swarmed around McGonagall until she gave them a group hug—it took about half an hour, but those persistent bastards managed to do it. A huge feeling of unity swept across us all.

The marauders had a send-off prank—the words “Mischief Managed” floating high above the great hall remained all week. Even after our trunks were packed, our tears shed, and goodbyes said. Even after we boarded the train and watched the castle we’d called our home disappear in the distance from the small windows beside our seats. Even after we wept at the train station and exchange addresses, phone numbers, floo lines, and other means of communication.

I kissed Peter goodbye as I went with my parents. We’d see each other in two weeks and be on our way to vacation. I hugged the other three Marauders, giving each a kiss on the cheek. I told Camilla how much I’d miss her, my address, and that she should really beauty charm her hair again. She squeezed me tight and actually shed a tear. Mute smiled kindly at me, gave me a warm hug, her cousin’s address, and her very best goodbye. Lily didn’t say goodbye, claiming she’d see me soon anyway.

And that was that. 


This is going to seem like the most pathetic thing in the world, but I nearly cried while writing the graduation part. I have no idea why, but the entire concept was so jarring in my mind. It was beautiful. haha. 

Thank you so much to everyone who has reviewed. I really hope you REVIEW again. haha. I'm excited that next chapter is the last, and I can't wait to read and answer every single one of my reviews. 

Again, thank you all. 
-love-
LilyMaria

Review Question: What do you think is going to happen now? Now that they have graduated?


Chapter 29: Epilogue.
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I picked up a newspaper and sighed, reading the headline:
BABY DEFEATS HE-WHO-MUST-NOT-BE-NAMED

I felt my forehead scrunch together as I pieced it all together in my mind. Lily and James were dead. But somehow, their son had lived and defeated the dark wizard who’d killed his parents. And somehow, in all this commotion, Sirius had become a traitor and killed Peter. I couldn’t even imagine how horrible Camilla and Elsie must have been feeling.

I walked to the nearest fireplace and flooed immediately over to Elsie’s flat. The place looked dark, something that confused me very much. Elsie was the brightest, most optimistic person I’d ever met. The curtains that were covering the windows, the lack of light in the entire room—it wasn’t Elsie. I walked around the large sofa and picked up a few glasses, some still full of liquid. “Else?” I called.

I flicked my wand quickly and all of the dishes around the room floated over to the sink, where the faucet turned on and the sponge began to scrub. I opened the curtains and folded a blanket to put over the back of the sofa, just attempting to tidy it up a bit. I heard a shuffle from the back and walked over. Elsie’s room was on the right, and I leaned against the door for a moment. I heard sobs and muffled noises. Poor Elsie, I thought.

I rapped on the door, calling, “Elsie?”

No response. The sobs stopped. I opened the door and was greeted with a strange sight.

“Camilla?” I asked.

Sure enough, Camilla was sitting in pajamas on Elsie’s bed, with Elsie beside her. They were surrounded by blankets and pillows and tissues, lots and lots of tissues. Camilla had her dark brown hair pulled back, with her nose all red and her eye makeup running.

“Mute,” She smiled sadly, fondly. I nodded and raised my eyebrows and the two of them. My best friends. “I’m sorry about Remus. I heard that he is off somewhere trying to get over—“

“Mil,” Elsie stopped her, shaking her head. It was an effort to protect me, but really, it was I who needed the least of the comforting.

“How are you?” I asked Elsie. She smiled up at me, shaking her head.

“Oh, Mute,” she breathed. “He was such a good guy. So…brave.” I never would have described Peter as brave, but if that’s how Elsie wanted to remember him, I didn’t see need to correct her. “And this is ghastly. Truly, it’s horrible!”

I heard it in her voice—she was about to cry again. I handed her a tissue and Camilla rubbed her back. It was strange to see them both so close. I’d been away too long, I reasoned. They’ve formed ties and bonds that I couldn’t intrude upon even if I attempted to. I caught Elsie’s eye and she laughed.

“It took three deaths and a disappearance for you to come home!” She sounded almost proud by it. I laughed too, apologetically. “Where’ve you been?”

“Ireland, with my family. I traveled around Dublin and then I went straight to where I grew up. It was nice, but I’ve been gone too long,” I sighed and reached down, touching my fingertips to the gold mink blanket that Elsie had got just before sixth year. It was a fond memory of mine, to curl up on it after long days. She never knew it, of course, because I didn’t want to creep her out—‘hey I’ve been taking naps in your bed’, yeah, that’s not creepy…

“Oh, Lily always talked about going up to Dublin,” Elsie smiled.

“I can’t imagine life without—“

“I know! This is awful,” Camilla interjected.

“Ghastly, simply ghastly,” Elsie adjusted the pillows behind her. I stared at the two of them. Together despite of everything we’d been through.

My thoughts somehow were spoken aloud, “After the bet, I didn’t think that life was worth living without Remus. But you guys were there. But now Lily and James were murdered. And Sirius decided the whole situation wasn’t completely fucked up enough, so he goes barmy and gets all crazy on Peter. And we’re here. Together. Alive and well.”

"Sirius wouldn't..." Camilla sobbed. Elsie rubbed her back, crying harder than before. I stared at them, thinking about how strange it was--Camilla's love murdering Elsie's. None of this would have ever happened without the stupid bet. But I couldn't blame Camilla. Not when she was up to her hair in tears and had dried snot around her nostrils. Elsie weaved a hand through Camilla's dark hair. I'd never seen her look so grown up before.

"It's going to be all right," I told them. And with the tone in my voice, after hearing me say such a thing, I believed it.

“Well, I wouldn’t necessarily say that we’re all peaches and good,” Camilla laughed bitterly. She ran a hand through her hair.

“No,” Elsie agreed. But she reached an arm over and pulled both of us into a hug. “But we will be.” 

Wow, guys. This is it. I know it was short, but I just wanted to get a bit of closure without completely saying THE END. Just in case. 

Thank you so much to every single person who has reviewed. It means a lot to me! 

It's been just over a year since I started this story. It's been a nice journey!



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