You are viewing a story from harrypotterfanfiction.com


Autumn falling by fayeswonderland

Format: Novella
Chapters: 10
Word Count: 12,696
Status: WIP

Rating: Mature
Warnings: Strong Language, Strong Violence, Scenes of a Sexual Nature, Contains Slash (Same-Sex Pairing), Sensitive Topic/Issue/Theme

Genres: Drama, Humor, Romance
Characters: Teddy, Scorpius, Albus, James (II), Lily (II), Hugo, Rose, Victoire, OC
Pairings: James/OC

First Published: 01/11/2012
Last Chapter: 12/14/2012
Last Updated: 12/14/2012

Summary:
stunning banner by .asperity @TDA






Life Lessons.

James II / OC (well, hopefully)


Chapter 1: Lesson 1
  [Printer Friendly Version of This Chapter]

Disclaimer: I solemnly swear I'm not J. K. Rowling and the Harry Potter series is not mine.




"AUTUMMMMMMMMN!!!!" Mom called from downstairs. 

I groaned. In no way I'm going to get up.

"AUTUMMMMMMMMMMMMN!!!!!" She called a second time.

I forced one eyelid open and closed it immediately as the bright sunlight that fell through the windows blinded my eyes.

"FOR THE LOVE OF MERLIN, AUTUMN!!!" My mother shouted angrily from the foot of our stairs. "IF YOU ARE NOT GOING TO GET YOUR BUTTOCKS OUT OF YOUR BED THIS INSTANT, I-"

"Alright, alright." I returned, way too tired to shout back.

Slowly I lifted my blanket and sat up on my bed. I tore my eyes open and groaned again, suddenly hating that my bedroom was painted in a bright yellow. It made my mornings even harder.

I leaned my hands on the bed and was about to stand up when my feet touched something soft. I looked down to examine which pillow had made its way out of bed at night only to find that it wasn't a pillow at all.

"James!!" I hissed and poked him in his side with my toes. He mumbled something incoherent and went to sleep again. Tosser.

"JAMES!!" I tried louder, kicking him harder.

"What?" He grumbled.

"Roll over, I want to get out of bed." He turned around to face me staring down to him.

"Why don't you just get out of bed on the other side?" He raised an eyebrow.

"This is my lucky side." I shrugged. Nothing uncommon in that. Not at all.

He smirked. "Is that so?"

"Yes."

"Well then-" And before I even knew what was going on he pulled me from my bed, down to the floor to him. If you're wondering, he didn't fall asleep on the floor yesterday. We always sleep in the same bed - NOT WITH EACH OTHER - when he is sleeping over here or I'm at the Potter's.

So, yes, you're guess is right when you assumed that this is James Potter that is sleeping on the floor next to my bed. The same Potter who ALWAYS tosses around in his sleep and ends up on the floor. It's a grudge. Seriously. The healers say it's nothing unusual. And I mean hey, everyone I know falls out of his or her bed every night, so nope - nothing weird there.

Please tell me you noticed the sarcasm?

I giggled loudly because James was tickling me. And I'm extremely ticklish. Come near me and try it. I promise you'll learn some dark magic the moment you try.

Actually no. I'm a pretty peaceful person. And I don't use spells to hurt someone. I've got my fists for that.

MUHAHAHAHA.

Just joking.

I don't do violence. It's just not my thing.

"Stop it James!" I laughed and he smirked the infamous Potter-smirk.

"If the lady does wish so." He winked.

"Yes, the lady does wish so, Mr Potter." I grinned and he stopped.

"Morning to you, too, Miss Fierce."

I scrunched my nose and snuggled into his chest. "It's way to early. But mom wants me - us - to get up."

I barely remembered that my mom didn't even know James slept over. Not that it matters anyway - he's practically living here the second part of the summer holidays. You can guess three times where I spent the first part. Right. 10 points for Gryffindor!

Well, only if you are in Gryffindor. Me and James are anyway. 7th year Gryffindors to be exact. Head Boy and Head Girl. Both on the Quidditch team.

*Go Cannons!!*

"Well, we can stay here until she comes upstairs and gives us her speech." James pondered grinning at the first time my mother didn't get her wish on one morning 3 years ago.

Meaning she got in here and shouted and screamed like a fury. Don't get the impression that she's a loud person. She's quite peaceful when she's asleep actually.

"And face the wrath of the Number 1 Erinye?" My eyes went big. "Thanks, but, no thanks."

"Just saying." He said.

"AUTUMN!" My mom bellowed just in time. James and I exchanged meaningful looks.

I counted with my fingers and James had to grin big time.

3, 2, 1-

"I KNOW YOU'RE A TEENAGER, YOUNG LADY, BUT THIS BEHAVIOR IS NOT-" The door opened and revealed an angry 40 years old lady with black hair. "Oh." She simply said eyes widening at the sight of us.

"James was allowed to sleep over, wasn't he?" I said sweetly, blinking my long eyelashes.

"S-sure." She stuttered taking in the scene in front of her, namely her seventeen-year-old daughter squished to the floor by a boy. Well, not any boy. James. My best friend of a lifetime James. James, who ran around in diapers with me.

"Mom, honestly, get a grip. There's no need to think equivocally." I rolled my eyes and James feeling a bit awkward I guess removed himself from me.

"I do not accept your language, Autumn Emilia Fierce." Whoa. No need to pull the full name, mom. My language was perfectly fine. "Kitchen duty today." I grimaced.

My last day of summer holidays and she makes me do the dishes. Awesome. "Oh and James?" She turned to him. "You can help Autumn, while you're still here."

She gave us a last disgustingly sweet smile before she closed the door behind her.

James and I looked at each other and we fell back on the floor, groaning.

"AND DON'T YOU DARE GOING BACK TO SLEEP!"

I snorted.

***

Lesson 1:

Better not mess with my mom.




Reviews would brighten my day ;)
-Sally


Chapter 2: Lesson 2
  [Printer Friendly Version of This Chapter]

Disclaimer: I solemnly swear I'm not J. K. Rowling and the Harry Potter series is not mine.



 "Kitchen duty sucks." I cursed scrubbing a dried crumb of whatever off a plate.

"Why again can't we use our wands?" James asked popping bubbles in our sink. 

"Because my lovely mom charmed this whole kitchen so dad and I do something useful in the household as well." I frowned. "It's worse than detention all this cleaning by hand. I wouldn't be surprised if my mom came down the stairs one day and said 'Autumn, sweetie, I'm going to be a teacher in Hogwarts this year, so I can deduct points from your house and make you polish the floor in detention all the time.'" I gave James a meaningful glance and he erupted in laughter.

Suddenly my mom stood in the doorframe. "Autumn, sweetie, I forgot to tell you something." 

James and I blanched and looked at her with a shocked expression.

"Your dad and I won't be at home for Christmas." She paused. 

"Oh, thank god, I thought-" I broke off, suddenly realizing I said this out loud. "Never mind." I added hastily and felt James' silent laughter beside me, his expression stern and thoughtful.

"We won't be in England either, actually. Work for the ministry. We have to spent Christmas at the annual Wizarding Congress in Hawaii." Whatever. It's not like Hawaii is the coolest place on earth AND I AM NOT COMING WITH THEM or so. And "have" to spend. Come on, she makes it sound as if it's a burden of sorts.

Chill, Autumn. Stay calm. Do not say something snappy. 

I pressed my lips into a thin line.

My parents are ministry officials. Their career took a one-hundred-eighty turn this year when they became popular. Higher salary, less time for me, and bitchy attitudes were the results. Needless to say I'm not quite happy about this. Well, we don't fight that often anymore… Considering that they even work Sundays it's not a miracle, I guess.

Most of the time I have no idea what they're doing at work. Not like I care. I mean, I won't ever go into the ministry of magic. Way too boring, if you ask me. You don't? 

Well, then I'll shut up.

Or not.

Haha.

I'd rather do something fun, like… something with dragons or… or… professional Quidditch! Yeah, Quidditch sounds great. Actually, practically amazing… I wonder-

"And I wanted to ask your parents, James, if she could stay at yours for the holidays, perhaps?" She raised an eyebrow. "I wouldn't want to ask aunt Theodosia.. you know how she gets…"

Let's just say we're not on best terms with auntie Dosia. She's somewhat creepy if you ask me. Always talking about and more importantly TO her cats. I bet I couldn't even count all the cats she possesses. And it stinks. I honestly wonder how uncle Epaphoditus (his parents clearly must have hated him) puts up with this. The only explanation I can make sense of it is that he simply can't smell. Yeah. I bet that's it.

Well, it's not only the fact that she possesses these "lovely" creatures. (I seriously haven't got anything against cat's but I'm thinking that she has put them under some spell to get angry with everyone except her and her husband…) Anyway. They haunt you. One night when I was five I had to spend the night at their house because my parents were working night shift and the Potters went away for a "family bonding trip". I woke up at night because I felt something at my feet and when I opened my eyes there were three pairs of luminescent eyes staring at me. I screamed as if my life depended on it and my Dosia came into the room thinking I hurt myself or so. Well, I guess you can imagine that these weren't ghosts that I was staring at but only three cats that made their way in my room. 

I had nightmares for a whole month after that.

James must have noticed the rather painful expression my face changed into while remembering the incident because he swiftly spoke up and took my mind of that horrible memory.

"Oh that's completely fine, Mrs Fierce." James blurted out laughing. He slung an arm around my shoulder and declared. "You know that Autumn is practically family." I had to grin. I mean even grandma Weasley knits me one of the famous Weasley jumpers with my initial on it for Christmas. 

"Oh then we could go ice-skating all day!" I said excitedly.

The Potters have a lake in their garden. Just saying. Cough. How "ordinary". Cough.

"And make these wonderful cookies with your mom and-" My mind went to all the cool things we could do while spending Christmas at James' house. AHHMAZING. Christmas at Potters, i imagined, would be just like Christmas in our family when I was younger. 

It was always a family thing in the past. And my parents never went to work, because they wanted to spend 'the most wonderful time of the year' with their 'most beautiful' (and only) daughter. 

But Christmas changed with the years. We started to fight on Christmas Eve, hold grudges on Christmas, and ignore each other on Boxing Day. 

"You know, sometimes I keep wondering if you even need us anymore." Mom mumbled. I couldn't decipher the tone and if she meant it seriously or not.

"Aww mommy." I cooed and flaunted myself into her arms. "Of course I do need you both." She hugged me tight and smiled into my hair.

"And now get back to work." She said suddenly releasing me and strolling out of the room into her office.

Gone is the kind and loving mom I once knew so well and back the cold and bitter ministry official. 

I stood there shoulders hanging, pondering.

I didn't even realize that James has come over and slowly put his arms around me. He always was like that. Knew what I felt. Knew when to hug or leave me alone. Knowing me better than anyone else, including me.

"Don't worry, A, we are going to have a blast." James murmured into my hair.

"I don't doubt that." I said, a small smile creeping up my face.

In James' arms I felt safe. Safe and hidden from all my problems. Safe from being hurt.

He took my face in his hands and kissed my forehead, his lips only resting for a blink of an eye, a gesture, I only ever experienced from him. 

"We should probably get back to work before-"

"AUTUMN AND JAMES, I AM FULLY AWARE OF THE FACT THAT YOU ARE NOT WORKING RIGHT NOW. CHANGE THAT." A pause. "NOW." Did she invent extendable eyes? Or install cameras I didn't knew of? 

We sighed and set off back to the sink.

***

Lesson 2:

Mom's eyes are everywhere.



I'd be the happiest person in the world if you'd review. <3


-Sally


Chapter 3: Lesson 3
  [Printer Friendly Version of This Chapter]

Disclaimer: I solemnly swear I'm not J. K. Rowling and the Harry Potter series is not mine.



 I am usually a happy person. Really.

Well, I guess that it's basically because of James.

"Auuuuuuutumn." He prolonged my name.

"What James?" I was currently lying on the couch with James, my head in his lap, while we watched Puddlemere United versus the Chudley Cannons. 

"I was thinking-" He started.

"Wow James thinking!" I exclaimed. "Trying something new then?" I smirked at him.

"Funny, A." James failed to look offended.

"I know you love me, sweetheart." I winked.

"You wish, Fierce." He flicked my nose.

"Hey!" I called out pouting. 

"Oh look he caught a glimpse of the snitch!" James shouted.

"Who?" I shouted back, my eyes leaving his face, shooting back to the display. 

"Gotcha!" James laughed and tickled me.

"James!" I laughed as well not being able to stop. I did mention I'm ridiculously ticklish, didn't I?

"That's my name." He retorted and I let out a snort.

"Your intelligence astounds me, you conniving little Potter."

"And that, love, is also my name."

"Stop it, James." I slapped his shoulder lightly.

"As you wish, milady." 

I grimaced.

"Oh look! The games over and we missed it!" I exclaimed.

"What?" James asked confused and before he could even guess what was going on, I pulled him off the couch and pinned him to the floor.

"Gotcha!" I shouted and tickled him as well. I'm not the only one who's ticklish here. Muhaha. 

"You Slytherin!" James gave a suffocated laugh.

"Nah ah. Gryffindor through and through." I reminded him poking him in the chest.

"Smart-butt." He said and grinned.

"Why do I always find you two on the floor when I come into the room?" Mom suddenly said from the doorway. "It's not like we do not have any furniture."

"Coincidence." I said.

Mom didn't look entirely convinced but shrugged it off. "Anyway. I just wanted to ask you if you have packed your trunk? It's nearly 10pm and you don't have any time for this tomorrow morning, Autumn."

"Sure mom. Everything's packed. James helped this afternoon."

"Well, good then. You remember not going to sleep too late?" She asked. "I have to get to the ministry again and help your father with some important work. So I am not sure when we're getting back tonight."

I bit my lip and decoded the true meaning of the words in my head. "Not sure when I'm getting back tonight" usually means she won't be home for at least two days. It's nothing uncommon, I could easily write a book about it.

"No problem, mom." I said forcing a smile.

"Well, I'll be going now." She told us and swept out of the room as sudden as she came.

I fiddled with my hands and looked at my nails once I sat up straight. I missed the hugs and occasional exchange of 'I love you'".

James shifted up beside me and took my hands in his. "Don't worry, Autumn."

His stare was intense. I could see the flecks of gold in his eyes that were usually more of a grassy green.

I tried to smile, but the only thing I achieved were single tears breaking through my shell, floating down my cheeks. I didn't mean to cry. I didn't even want it but I wasn't in control of my body.

James pulled me into his chest resting his chin on top of my head. 

"When did everything go wrong?" I asked myself silently into his shirt.

He only held me tighter not knowing what to say. And he didn't have to. I mean I didn't know the answer either. And I also didn't have an idea how to fix my family that was slowly falling apart. 

"Maybe they'll make it home until tomorrow." James said quietly after a while.

"Maybe." I knew the chances were about one in a million but my hope didn't leave me.

"Come on, love. I'll make you some tea." James clasped my hands together with his.

"Peppermint with no sugar but milk?" I asked looking up at him with small puffy eyes.

"Whatever you want, love." He smiled and scooped me up in his arms. 

"You know that I can walk, James, right?" I wanted to know as he carried me into the kitchen and put me down on the counter.

"I know." He flashed a grin at me and patted my thighs. "But you love to be carried around by me, Autumn."

I laughed. "Sure, James."

"Plus." He turned around from the counter pausing for extra effect. "I know you love me."

"I'll show you my love, Mr Potter, if I'm not getting my tea in a minute." I told him playfully and he snickered. 

"Feisty." He clicked his tongue. "I guess, I have to be even more overprotective of you this year."

"Any why is that?" I asked raising an eyebrow.

"Because every teenage guy will be after you, sweetheart, if you keep doing this." He looked at me meaningfully.

"We'll see about that, young man." I grinned.

James took the can with the boiling water and poured it into my favorite cup. The scent of peppermint unfolded in our kitchen and I inhaled deeply. I don't know, how James does it, but somehow I think he can see into my soul. I can't hide anything from him. He always senses how I feel, most of the time he knows my feelings better than I. I would love to say I'm able to do the same with him. Read his mind. Feel what he feels. But I don't. His mind is locked from me. From everyone. I'd do everything to find the key, but it seems like it's hidden somewhere, where no one can find it.

"There you go, love." James deep satiny voice ripped me from my thoughts.

"Thank you, James." I said, taking the mug into my hands and feeling instantly warmer and happier.

"Shall we go upstairs then?" James suggested and held out his right hand. 

I took it and smiled.

It was dark outside by now but one could still here the birds sing. I was aware that we would have to get up pretty early tomorrow and James had to send an owl home that his family would have to bring his trunk to the station tomorrow.


After I drank the tea James made me, I went to the bathroom, brushed my teeth quickly and slipped into my pajamas. I didn't care that they consisted of a pair of James' boxers and a huge Quidditch Jersey, I mean why should I. It's not like I have someone to impress with my choice of nightwear. And even if I did I probably wouldn't do it. I just can't understand how all these girls sleep in super scanty nightwear that probably itches in all places. Well, no thanks. I don't need that.

Pulling my hair up into a messy bun I returned into my room, only to find James already in his boxers half asleep on my bead. He must have used the bathroom on the ground floor. He smiled swiftly at me and then brought his eyes back to the television as he zipped through the channels.

"All set?" I asked referring to the owl to his parents.

"Yup." He quipped and pulled up the blanket a bit, motioning for me to get in. "Do you want to watch one of these horrid romance films or a documentation about the economy in Merlin-knows-who?"

I grimaced and snuggled into his side. "Can't we just listen to music?" I asked hopefully.

A satisfied smirk appeared on his face. "I knew you would say this."

I grinned. Of course he knew.

"So... we're going to be 7th years tomorrow, A!" James said resting his head on top of mine.

"I know! Can you believe it?" I looked up into his sleepy eyes.

"Not until I'm at Hogwarts." He sighed. Hogwarts. Oh how I missed it during the summer. 

"Well, I can't wait." I yawned tracing patterns on his chest.

I was barely aware of my eyes closing against my will. 

"Me neither." He mumbled.

Neither did I hear what James whispered into my hair before pressing his lips on top of my head, nor did I hear Coldplay's "fix you" lingering softly in my room.

I just fell asleep in James arms, cushioned against reality.

***
Lesson 3:

Some things never change. Some do.



I'd be delighted, if you reviewed. :)
-Sally

Ps: Coldplay's song "fix you" which was mentioned at the end of this chapter, really exists, and is not mine.


Chapter 4: Lesson 4
  [Printer Friendly Version of This Chapter]

Disclaimer: I solemnly swear I'm not Joanne K. Rowling and I do not own the Harry Potter Series.



Lesson 4


RRRRRIIIIINNNNGGGG!!!

"Hrngpf." I grumbled and reached out for my alarm clock with my eyes still closed.

Argh. I flailed around with my arms but it wasn't there. 

"G'morn." My pillow mumbled into my ear.

My eyes snapped open and I took in the situation. No wonder my clock wasn't within reach. James seemed to have taken me with him while he rolled out of bed.

Great. I bet my back is going to hurt for the next three days now.

"Morning." I said grumpily as I sat up and hit my alarm clock which was still ringing loudly.

I stretched my arms in the air and bend back my head when I saw an owl sitting on my windowsill from the corner of my eye.

"What is Twinkles doing here?" James asked confused. He seemed to have noticed the light grey owl as well.

"I don't know." I replied while getting up and walking to the window. I opened it ad Twinkles tapped in. She stared at me with her eyes wide open and handed me a small piece of parchment she held in her claws.

I was nervous as I unfolded the paper because Twinkles wasn't just any owl. It was the owl of our minister himself. So what would he possibly want from me?

I began to read.

Autumn,

your dad and I aren't going to make it home before you leave to Hogwarts.

My heart sank. There it was. My last spark of hope gone with the wind. I felt James' breath on my neck and shuddered inevitably.

You can take the car to drive yourself and James to Kings Cross, we will fetch it sometime soon. We hope you have a fantastic year at Hogwarts, and don't forget to write, okay?

I snorted. Don't forget to write. Right. They're the ones too busy to reply to my letters, but I should not forget to write? Funny.

We will see you for your easter holidays.

Love,

Mum 

PS: Your dad says I should tell you to stay safe and out of trouble.

I oppressed another snort. Stay safe. Thanks dad. Rub in my face that I'm still single. A frown made its way on my face. And stay out of trouble, huh? As if I ever even pulled a prank.

I felt James' arms snake around my waist and sighed as he held me close. 

I don't know why I felt so sad and disappointed. I mean, it was clear, they were not going to make it. Still I felt this jab of pain in my chest ready to explode. 

But it didn't. I just stood there frozen, not a tear streaking down my face. Maybe there are no tears left anymore? Twinkles nudged my arm and brought me back from my reverie, clearly wanting a snack. I grabbed into the box of "Watercrack's Owl Snacks" I placed next to the window and she took it out of my hand gratefully. Then she turned around and made her way back to her owner. 

Mum didn't even tell her to wait until I gave her an answer.

***

"AUTUMN YOU'RE GOING TO CAUSE AN ACCIDENT!" James cried as we sped through the countryside.

"No I'm not, James." I gave him a meaningful look. I knew what I was doing. Kind of.

Okay, I had no idea what I was doing, but so what. We're young. We're allowed to do something reckless. (Because driving a car with a drivers license is totally reckless and all.)

I honestly have no idea how I got my license, though. I mean, clearly I was unable to drive. I think my dad bribed the examiner into giving it to me.

I hate what money can do.

"EYES ON THE ROAD, FIERCE!!" James clung onto the car dashboard for dear life.

"Yeah, yeah, James." I smirked. "Chill, dude."

"HOW AM I SUPPOSED TO CHILL WHEN YOU'RE ABOUT TO KILL US?!" James screeched, his voice an octave higher than normal. Oh boy. I'm not going to ever forget that. "I, UNLIKE YOU, WANT TO SURVIVE THE RIDE!"

"God, James, you sound like a 5 year old girl-" James tried to cut in here but I just went on. "who has a terrible fear of spiders and is facing a tarantula, not a 17 year old boy-"

"HEY!" James pouted. 

"Fine. MAN." I stressed the word and James looked pleased again. "Who is driving in a car." I cocked one eyebrow.

"I'm pretty manly." James stated.

"Suuuuuuuure." I grinned.

"Is this-" James started and stopped abruptly, fake hurt dripping from his voice. "Is this you questioning my manliness?" He tried to look offended.

"Considering your little show just now…" I pondered for a moment. "Pretty much. Yes."

"You didn't." James stated rather matter of factly.

"Oh and how I did." A smirk spread on my lips.

"If you weren't driving…" He trailed. 

I burst out laughing.

***

"I can't believe I'm alive." James stated while he lifted our trunks onto the trolley once we arrived at King's Cross.

"Come on, Baby Potter, it wasn't that bad." It was. Even I was wondering how on earth I managed to not get ourselves killed on the ride.

"Don't call me that, A." James pouted. "That's my nickname for Lily. And seriously, it's weird being called just like your baby sister." He scrunched up his nose.

"Fine, J." I rolled my eyes at my best friend.

I closed the boot and locked the car, before looking up to James. He was frowning and clearly deep in thoughts. 

"Everything alright with you?" I waved my hand in front of his face.

He suddenly snapped out of his trance and smiled. "Sure, everything fine."

I smiled back.

"We're seniors, A." He said excitedly and held his hand out for me to take.

"I know!" I grinned, lacing my fingers through his as we made our way to the platform. 

***

It was crowded. Way too crowded. Witches and Wizards were all over the place, hugging and scolding their children who were about to hop on the train. 

"Mummy I'm going to miss you so much." A little blonde girl with pigtails sobbed while her mother hugged her close, her dad rubbing her back soothingly.

My heart dropped. Exactly seven years prior it was me who was crying on my mother's shoulder while my dad tried to calm me down.

And now, no they didn't even come to see me off.

I felt James squeeze my hand and I turned to look at him. When he saw a single tear drop from my eyes he lifted his other hand and wiped it away with his thumb.

"I'm here for you. Here with you." He murmured. "I always will be." 

My stomach began to flutter and a warm feeling spread through my veins.

Wait, what?

Before I could even register what just happened and notice the close proximity of my face and James', a shout completely threw me off.

"HOLY MERLIN'S PANTY LINES!!! FREDDIE YOU OWN ME 10 GALLEONS, BOY!" Let me introduce: Ronda. Fellow 7th year Gryffindor and my girl-best-friend. 

James and I turned around to see a gaping Ronda in between the masses and a spluttering Freddie Weasley on her heels.

"YOU CAN'T BE SERIOUS!" He coughed and then looked at us. His eyes widened and he gulped. 

"I can't believe you two are together and didn't tell us!" Ronda exclaimed with an outraged look on her heart shaped face.

Wait, what?

My brain decided to work in slow-motion and when I finally found the words to say, to clarify we are NOT together, James beat me to it.

"Frederick Weasley, I cannot believe you made bets about me and A being together!" He almost shouted.

WAIT, WHAT??

And then it all made sense in my head.

10 galleons. Freddies shocked face. Ronda saying we're a couple.

Merlin's beard, our friends really made bets about us.

***

Lesson 4:

Laughing feels good.



I'm so sorry for not updating sooner!
Life is way too hectic these days...
-Sally

 


Chapter 5: Lesson 5
  [Printer Friendly Version of This Chapter]

Disclaimer: I am no J.K. Rowling nor will I ever be, as sad as it is.


chapter image by .asperity @TDA {aka. Kristina <3}




"WHAT? HOW CAN YOU NOT BE TOGETHER?!" Ronda boomed once again while we sat in our compartment.

I still couldn’t wrap my head around the fact that they bet on when we would get together. James just laughed it off and hit Freddy on the back of his head before taking him in a headlock and starting a wrestling match, which he won. For them the bet was old news then and they started to chat about what they did during the last week of the summer holidays, which was – to be honest – the only week they went without doing something crazy together.

James and Freddy grew up together as they are cousins. Somehow they bonded over a flubberworm when they were three and are joined at the hip the ever since. With James being in the possession of the infamous invisibility cloak and the marauders map, you can probably imagine the mischief they caused. I forced myself not to grin at the hilarious moments both of them provided us with, as they flew through my head, but seemingly failed, as I received a raised eyebrow from Ronda.

“We’re just not, okay?” I said, not wanting to discuss the subject any further. We already bickered for the first hour on the train about it.

Ronda huffed and resigned to reading the newest edition of “Quidditch Daily”.

I looked out the window and enjoyed the peace. James had soon fallen asleep with his head on my lap and I absentmindedly treaded my fingers through his mop of hair. This would be our last year of school. Our last year of being safely tucked under the arm of something bigger. After that we would be alone in the big world, having to navigate on the seas of life. I shuddered inwardly. As bad as I wanted to stand on my own two feet, I feared the pool of possibilities.

I mean, I was sure I wanted to go Quidditch Pro; I came as far as that. But it’s not that easy to even land a spot as a reserve on a half-decent team. There were scouts, sure, but they usually only took up to two Hogwarts students, so my chances of getting in were about zero per cent.

James ripped me from my thoughts by grabbing one of my hands and nuzzling it into his face. He sighed happily. Fred raised an eyebrow from the other side of the compartment and I just shrugged my shoulders. He gave me a knowing look before leaning his head against the window and drifting off into a sweet slumber next to a lightly snoring Ronda, who was still clutching her magazine tightly in her hands.

Leaving me the only one awake.

***

“No, it won’t explode in your face, Freddy.” Ronda assured him.

A wary expression formed on his face. We were in the middle of a pretty intense game of exploding snap.

“Oh it so will.” I said smugly. I had this feeling in the pit of my stomach. That’s going to be a fine moment for the history books.

“No, it won’t.” Ronda shot me a mocking glare and I chuckled; James, on whose knees I was leaning on, behind me joined.

“Oh just tap that card already, Fredster, or I will tell everyone what you did that time last year when Filch’s favorite broom went missing and-” Ronda didn’t even get to finish her sentence because Freddy already had tapped that card which - BOOOOOM - resulted in a huge explosion. And fits of laughter on James and my side.

“Told you so!” I cackled oh so girly while trying to regain my breath. Freddy’s appearance was priceless. His frizzy hair stuck up into all dimensions and the look on his face… let’s just say you could get famous with a picture of it.

Ronda seemed to be torn between shouting at James and I for laughing at him, or laughing herself. The outcome was a weird snort kind of thing that made us laugh even harder, and Ronda laugh at herself.

“Anything from the trolley, dears?” Mrs. Fitch, the trolley lady, stuck her head in our compartment and was instantly raided by the boys, who leaped at her and bought almost the entire thing.

Boys.

“Want anything?” Freddy said with his mouth full of three chocolate frogs. I only stared at him thinking how that was possible.

“No thanks.” I pulled a face at him. He didn’t even seem to notice that his eating techniques are gross.

I shuddered inwardly and concentrated myself on James, who didn’t resemble a monkey while munching on a liquorice wand. So much better to look at. The muscles on his neck tightened every time he chewed and his face displayed a very determined look. I wondered what he was thinking. His eyebrows knit together, pupils darkened he seemed to be in his own world. Absentmindedly he stared out the window. At times James just switched from being his usual cheery self to a whole different person. He would build up a fort and line up an army of soldiers, to protect the unbreakable walls, hiding in the dungeons where no light would find him. No one knew what was invading his mind at those times but everyone knew better than to disturb him. It would be like waking a dragon from a beauty sleep.

I averted my eyes as I noticed I was staring at him too long and fidgeted on my seat; my eyes trying to not meet those of Freddy.

Because he saw me staring.

***

I don’t even know why suddenly I felt so hot, because I, as the official best friend of James Potter, have a legitimate excuse to do so. Still, my cheeks lit up like fire and my palms were getting sweaty. Strangely it reminded me of the feeling I always got as a little child, when James and I did something off-limits and our parents were on the verge of finding out.

An uncommon tension hung thickly over our compartment, like the dull fog in the mornings. Time seems to stretch and the noises coming from the metal wheels hugging the rails exceptionally loud. The silence of nobody speaking was killing me, though. That was until Alex McLaggen burst into our compartment.

“Gotta change into your robes, ladies and lads.” He threw a wink at Ronda and she giggled. Uh, I could totally understand why she was always acting so gibberish around him. With his 6’’1’ tall and muscular frame and the mop of bright blonde curls on his head, he basically looked like a Greek god.

“Evening, Autumn.” He directed his attention to me and I raised an eyebrow in return. Since when do we communicate? “Seems like someone finally grew into her body over the summer, eh?” He shot me a smug grin and I gaped at him. “Relax, girl, you’re looking mighty fine, as always." 

And with that he was gone.

And I received a glare from Ronda. And Freddy?! Huh.

“Relax, Ronda, he’s all yours.” I looked amusedly at her blushing form, then to Freddy. And decided that he was most definitely having a bad day. “Let’s change, yeah?”

They both nodded and I thought it was time to bring James back from la-la-land. I scooted over to him, wrapped my arms around his middle from behind and laid my head on his shoulder. “Wakey wakey little Jamesie!” I cooed into his ear and instantly heard the boy in question groan.

“Was it really necessary to call me that?” He pulled a face and pouted.

“Yes, and now change, boy, we’re almost there.” I grinned and reached for my trunk to pull it down.

Once I found my uniform in the mess of my trunk, I cast a disillusionment charm on myself, as did the others, to be able to change myself without someone seeing me half naked.

We only finished changing into our school robes, when the Hogwarts Express came to a halt and the students began hurrying down the train eagerly awaiting the welcoming feast.

James took his trunk and mine and we made our way out the train, where the new first years were anticipating our instructions.

Our last year was about to begin.


Lesson 5:

Don’t watch Freddy Weasley eat food, ever.









I'll be forever grateful for any comments / shared opinions <3
-Sally xx



Chapter 6: Lesson 6
  [Printer Friendly Version of This Chapter]

Disclaimer: I'm not J.K. Rowling and the Harry Potter series is not mine.

Here's to Kristina, my lovely friend and beta, because she's so awesome!





“I’m never going to sit next to you again, Freddy.” I threw a fairly disgusted look in his direction, but he barely acknowledged me. He only stuffed his face further with the piles of food, that were aligned on the tables in the Great Hall.

A happy noise of hundreds of students reporting to their friends of their respective holidays; newbies swapping the first sentences with their future house mates and friends and sounds of people muncing on food and slurping drinks. The overly good mood infected even the Bloody Baron and Peeves and they decided to stage a performance of tap dancing, while singing a song of “how the Nearly headless Nick locked himself in the bathroom with Moaning Myrtle”. Needless to say the whole student population of Hoggy Hogwarts cheered them on.

“I don’t think he heard you.” James, who sat on my other side, chuckled lightly at the behavior of his best friend. I frowned. 

“He’s never going to get a girl, I swear.” I said pointedly to James. “He seriously needs to attend some classes for improving his manners.”

Ronda snorted into her pumpkin juice and mumbled something incoherent, before turning to Chase Thomas, who was still chatting happily mostly to himself. Weird kid.

“Getting a girl isn’t the problem here, I’m afraid.” James pointed out. “Keeping the girl is.” Referring to Freddy’s love life that basically consisted of numerous one night stands in dusty broom cupboards rather than relationships.

“True dat.” I agreed and munched on my mashed potatoes, when suddenly James reached over me to look at my watch.

“Look at the time!” He cried out. “We have to get to the prefects classroom for the start of term meeting!”

I threw a look at it and drowned a last sip of my juice. “Shit, you’re right! We still have to prepare the meeting. Oh god, James, it’s the first meeting and we’re already late! Some role models are we!” I exclaimed and pulled James up with me.

“Later guys!” James called to Fred and Ronda before rushing along the Great Hall.

“Chill, Autumn.” James said, once we reached the classroom on the fifth floor. “Remember, the prefects still have to get the first years into their respective dorms.” He squeezed my hand, he was still holding

“I guess you’re right.” I mumbled and bit on my lip. “Still, everything has to be perfect!”

“Relax, love.” He pulled me into a hug. “You’re going to make a great Head Girl and you know that. This year is ours.”

He winked cheesily and I rolled my eyes.

***

You know how they say that time travels fast, when you're having fun? Well, imagine how fast the first few weeks of our seventh year at Hogwarts flew by with the teachers giving us hell because apparently our NEWTS {that are - just to remind you - taking place at the end of our school year} are "just around the corner". 

Exactly.

“I can’t believe that we have to write a 4 foot long essay about the “Medieval Assembly of Wizards”, we already had to do that in second year!” Fred exclaimed, while propping his feet up on our table in History of Magic. “Binn’s clearly should have retired ages ago.”

“You wouldn’t have to whine about that essay if you hadn’t burned all your stuff from our previous school years.” I smirked. Oh how I was enjoying his pain. “Personally, I thought this assignment was fairly easy.”

Freddy’s face went through a phase of confusion until he reached the point when his brain made sense of what I was trying to tell him. “W-w-what??” He spluttered. “B-b-but HOW??” He frantically waved his hands through the air. “Oh you sneaky little thing.” His eyes narrowed. “You’ve kept your old essa-”

“AND TODAY WE’LL BE WORKING ON THE UPRISE OF ELFRIC THE EAGER.” Professor Binn’s voice squeaked through the classroom and my hands instantly flew up to my ears. Great, how am I supposed to survive this class again?

“’Tis pretty easy my fair lady.” A slimy voice drawled from my right. Whoops, I think I may have said that last part aloud… “There’s you, hot stuff, and me…” He wiggled his eyebrows and I pulled a face.

“Gross, Holden, no wonder you haven’t had a girlfriend for more than a day.” Let me explain to you. The guy in question: Holden Flint, 7th year, Slytherin and son of ugly face Marcus Flint.

Freddy let out a snicker behind me, as did Orion McZane, who somehow was following Flint around like a lost puppy – some gnome must’ve killed his last braincells when he was a kid. There is no other explanation.

Holden let out a grunt and turned back to face Professor Binns and the history lesson that bored us all to near death.

With a satisfied grin on my face, I leaned back into my chair and let my eyes wander across the room. Nobody really listened to Binn’s and he apparently was way too dedicated to teaching his wonderful – his words not mine – subject that notice that he was the only one fascinated by Elfric the Eager or really anything ancient.

Most of the time I asked myself why I chose to study History of Magic NEWT level. James seemed to be the only Gryffindor smart enough to not take it. But then, it’s pretty easy to get fairly good marks with Binn’s as a teacher, so it could be worse.

Then my eyes fell on the figure of Freddy, sitting on my left. Something was off. Definitely, off. He drew circles on his blank paper in front of him matching the dark ones under his eyes and was dead quiet for the whole lesson. I frowned.

“Hey Fredster.” I nudged him with my shoulder. “What’s gotten your knickers into a bunch this early into the year?”

“Nothing.” He mumbled, still not looking at me.

“You can’t fool me, Freddiboy.” I smirked and snatched the pen out of his hands.

Fred’s head rose and he stared across the classroom, a look of disgust crept onto his face. He turned to me, his eyes black. “THERE’S NOTHING WRONG WITH ME, SO LEAVE ME ALONE, AUTUMN. YOU’RE NOT MY MOM!”

He snatched his bag from the floor and his parchment on our desk, before storming out of the classroom. I stared after him with my mouth agape, as did the majority of our class including Binns. Excluding Alex Mc Laggen and that pug-nosed Eunice Parkinson across the room who were making kissy faces at each other, not noticing anything besides themselves.

Huh.

***

Lesson 6:

Don’t burn old school stuff, for it can be really useful.




Please do leave a comment (:
-Sally




Chapter 7: Lesson 7
  [Printer Friendly Version of This Chapter]

Disclaimer: I'm still not J.K. Rowling and don't own the Harry Potter series~




After Binns declared the end of the lesson and collected our essays I sprinted out of the classroom in search of Freddy. Even if he told me a million times that there is nothing bothering him, I wouldn’t believe it a single time.

It’s more than just a gut feeling telling me that there’s something completely wrong with one of my best friends, I’ve just known Freddy for too long to not notice such a change in his person.

I ran along the crowded corridors and tried to ignore the fact that I was going to be late for my next class. My feet seemed to have a mind of their own, leading me down the stairs, through the entrance hall and to the edge of the Black Lake where I saw the outline of a figure leaning back against a tree while throwing stones into the water. I let out a sigh and made the last steps before slowly sitting down next to him. 

I took Freddy’s hand and toyed with his fingers, signalling to him that he could talk to me, no matter what. No words were needed at that moment, it was just two friends in silent understanding that the unspoken truth will be shared when time comes.

He leant his head against my shoulder and took a deep breath. I could practically feel the chaos that was going on in his head at this very second and realized that whatever was going on with Freddy was something big.

***

I stumbled into Charms class about 30 minutes too late, muttering something about not feeling well, before slumping down in the back of the classroom next to a frowning James, who eyed me suspiciously.

“Where were you, Autumn?” He asked me once I unpacked my parchment and quill, one eyebrow raised in expectation of the truth.

“I wasn’t feeling well.” I bit my lip and tried to not look into his eyes, as I knew my carefully built up ice castle would crack within a blink of an eye under his determined stare.

He snorted. “You can fool Flitwick, but I won’t fall for that.” Darn that perceptive friend of mine.

“I-” I searched for another lie, for I thought it would be better to keep the thing with Freddy to myself. If he wanted James to know he was hogging a secret, he would surely find a way to do so. “I suppose you don’t want to hear about the perks of my menstrual cycle, am I right?” I cocked an eyebrow, matching his, and noticed a faint blush creeping up his cheeks.

I knew it would work. Somehow, in my 17 years of being a witch I experienced that every time a girl mentions her period around a guy, there somehow seem to be alarm bells going off in his mind, It signals for them to not ask any further questions, for it would only result in information he does not want to receive.

“So what did I miss?” I asked him, unpacking my copy of “The advanced book of spells” by Miranda Goshawk and accidentally slamming it down on our table with a loud thud, disrupting Professor Flitwick in his rant and making the whole class turn to James and I.

“Sorry!” I called out with a sheepish grin on my face, silently scolding myself for my clumsiness. “Continue, please.” I added and tried to shoot a rather charming smile to our professor, whose pink tinged cheeks revealed my success in doing so.

He awkwardly coughed, making the heads turn around to the front of the room again. Meanwhile, James erupted into silent fits of laughter which he desperately tried to cover up. That, however, only ended up in him choking badly and me hitting his back so his lungs would fill with enough oxygen again.

***

When we sat down at the Gryffindor table in the Great hall, James’ laughing fit still hadn’t subsided fully and we were in a full on joking mood.

“Hey James!” I called to my best friend who sat on the bench across the table.

“What?” His head snapped up, the pea I flicked and aimed at his forehead bouncing right off its destination.

“Watch out?” I offered him before Ronda started laughing hysterically and I eventually joined in.

A smirk spread out on Jame’s face and he flicked some peas back at me making me giggle and squirm in my seat trying to dodge them.

“You’re going down, Fierce!” He growled, eyes shimmering darkly, flickering down to his plate and up, only to lock with mine again.

“You wish, Potter.” I hissed, grabbing some dozen peas without breaking our eye contact.

And then Pea War III started.

Hell broke lose as Ronda and I fought against James in an intense battle of peas over the Gryffindor table. I managed to capture the bowl of peas, earning Ronda and I a significant advantage, as James had to fight with the peas he caught from us.

Memories flooded back to me of our first Pea War in our second year here at Hogwarts. Freddy said something about Ronda’s nose being weird and she took major offense in that comment, chucking the first few peas at Freddy. You can imagine what happened next.

Ronda squealed as a pea hit her right on the nose and she squeezed her eyes shut, throwing the following peas blindly across the table.

Hitting Freddy in the face.

An uncomfortable silence hung over us, as nobody dared to continue the war. Freddy, who had been very much interested in stabbing the food on his plate before, not so much in our battle, lifted his head for the first time this lunch with a scowl on his features.

“Is it so hard-” he said through gritted teeth. “For you to be mature for just one day?!”

I inwardly raised both my eyebrows. That coming from Freddy? Master of pranks? Most immature person I know? I blinked.

He placed his napkin on the table angrily and stood up, “If you’ll excuse me.”

He strutted to the doors of the Great Hall, turning back to look at me quickly with a serious look on his face. The look that said it all.

“I think Freddy is PMS’ing.” Ronda interposed.

I looked across the table only to find James frowning for the second time this morning. “Maybe I should go check on him.” He pondered and was just about to get up when I stopped him with my words.

“No, I’ve got this.” I smiled, trying to achieve a reassuring look, and got up, leaving two of my best friends behind, showered by a wave of confusion.

I stepped through the enormous double wing doors of the Great Hall and looked for Freddy, whom I found leaning against a pillar.

I took a step towards him and he stepped away from the column. It’s time to get some answers.

And by the looks of it, I was going to get them right now.

***

Lesson 7:

Friends are usually more perceptive than you think.




I would love it if you took the time to write a short review (:
-Sally

PS: ALL THE THANKS TO KRISTINA, MY PERFECT BETA <3




Chapter 8: Lesson 8
  [Printer Friendly Version of This Chapter]

Kristina, my beta & friend is the most amazing person on the planet for she is my better half and the only reason I am writing on this story regularly! <3

Disclaimer: I solemnly swear I am not J.K. Rowling and I do not own the Harry Potter series.




Freddy and I walked silently next to each other until we reached the giant tree from earlier today. I instantly sat down, pulling Freddy beside me. 

He shifted uncomfortably and was clearly nervous. Breathing in the October air, I stayed silent, letting Freddy find the first words to say.

“If I tell you what’s up with me.” He broke through the silence. “You have to promise me, you won’t tell anybody. Not even James.”

“Sure, Freddy.” I turned to him and smiled reassuringly. “Your secret’s safe with me.”

A hint of a smile spread on his face, while his eyes still floated over the Black Lake; watching it as if it was the most fascinating place in the world.

“I-” He began. “I fancy someone, Autumn.”

My eyes lit up. “But that’s awesome, Freddy!”

His face grew stony again. “It’s serious this time. I-” He broke, his usually confident shell at his feet on the gound. “I tried stopping it, Autumn, I really tried.”

“But why would you want to stop-” I tried cutting across but he wouldn’t have it.

“It’s not right Autumn, I can’t fancy… that person.” He brought his hands to his forehead and hid behind them.

“But, I don’t understand.” Why couldn’t he fancy her?

“It’s just not right, Autumn. Gosh-” He said, burying his face in his hands again.

“What’s her name then?” I grinned and gently nudged his shoulder.

“That’s exactly the point, Autumn.” Freddy exclaimed. I just stared at him waiting for further explanation, as my brain apparently didn’t want to put the pieces together. “You don’t have to ask what her name is. The right question would be: what’s his name?”

His name? Did that mean that- “You’re gay?” I asked dumbfounded.

“Yes, Autumn.” Freddy mumbled and fiddled with my fingers - I didn’t even notice that he had taken my hand in his.

“But what’s wrong with that?” I asked, once I collected my thoughts.

“What’s wrong?” He snorted. “Everything is wrong, Autumn. I’m not supposed to feel that way! I’m supposed to have a girlfriend and-”

“Hang on there, Fredster.” I interrupted him, placing my free hand on his shoulder. “You’re not supposed to be anything but you! Being gay isn’t a crime. And doesn’t make you a bad person or any different!”

“But that’s exactly what it does!” He mumbled. “It makes me different. If it comes out, people won’t look at me the same. They will treat me different, hell Autumn, some will even be disgusted.” He threw me a look to say “don’t even think about interrupting” and went on. “And that’s exactly why no one can find out. Do you get that?”

I nodded silently and enveloped him in a bear hug. “I won’t tell anyone, Freddy.”

He threw his arms around my tiny waist and buried his face in the crook of my neck. “Thank you, A. You have no idea how much this means to me.”

I smiled at the fact that Freddy trusted me so much that he would tell me his deepest secret and hugged him tighter. “I’ve got one question, though.” I pulled back to look at him. “And you have to answer it, mister.” I grinned cheekily.

Freddy raised an eyebrow and motioned me to go on.

“Who is it you fancy?”

***

“I can’t believe I agreed to this.” I grumbled as I hit my head on the stony arm of the statue of Salazar, as we hid behind it.

“Shush, Autumn, or they’re going to hear us.” Freddy growled to my left.

So you probably are asking yourself: why am I currently crouching on the cold floor of the Slytherin dungeons behind an ancient statue?

Well, that’s a rather easy question to answer: Freddy dragged me across the whole castle to the entrance of the Slytherin common room to spy on McLaggen and Parkinson.

Jealous bugger.

I frowned and shuffled a bit closer to Freddy – this statue was way too small to cover two people.

“There he is!” Freddy hissed and motioned to the left where McLaggen skipped along the corridor. Yes. He skipped. With the top two buttons of his shirt undone and sleeves of his robe rolled up to the elbows, he actually looked kind of fit. I shuddered at my thoughts. I did not just think that. Gross, Autumn. “But I can’t see pug face anywhere.”

“She’s probably off in the bathrooms stuffing her bra or something.” I stated, rolling my eyes and Freddy only shrugged his shoulders.

The minutes passed by slowly and nothing happened. A dead silence hung over the hallways in this part of the castle and I had to stifle a yawn until we heard someone coming down the stairway to the dungeons.

I closed my eyes and prayed not to burst out laughing as I heard McLaggen was talking – no, singing – to himself. “I’m too sexy for my robe, too sexy for my robe, soooo sexayyyyyy yeah-”

“Freddy.” I pointed my thumb at McLaggen. “Seriously? YOU FANCY THAT DOLT?!”

“Hey! I take offence in that!” He whisper yelled, for McLaggen still hadn’t made it into the common room.

“You should.” I told him.

“Look, I know you don’t think highly of him, Autumn, but-” Freddy started.

“He might be nice yadda yadda, I get it, Fredster.” I threw him a look. “But before you get your hopes up, kiddo, we best find out, if he’s even into guys. For all we know – and seeing at the moment-“ I said referring to his flirtiness towards Parkinson. “he appears to be straight, I’m afraid.”

Freddy nodded reluctantly and let out a sigh, when suddenly a familiar voice interrupted our conversation.

“What in Merlin’s dirty socks are you two doing here?!”

Busted.

***

James was staring at Freddy and me awaiting our answer, while tapping his right foot impatiently.

“Ummm…” Fred started, looking at me with wide eyes. He obviously needed some help there.

“You see-” I whirled around to look for McLaggen, but he seemed to be gone already. “Fredster and I overheard a conversation during History of Magic between Flint and McZane talking about smuggling dung bombs out of the Slytherin common room to prank some of the first years, and you know, we couldn’t just let that happen.”

Call me master of excuses, please.

James eyed us suspiciously but let it go. “So you’re cowering behind a statue.” He trailed.

“Exactly.” Freddy and I chorused and promptly burst out laughing, relieved to let go some of the built up tension.

“I have such weird friends.” He mumbled and rubbed his forehead, making us laugh only harder.

“So what brings you down here, mister?” I reversed the situation and Freddy raised an eyebrow.

“Uhh. Actually I heard the same rumor.” He said scratching his neck. “Just wanted to check out if it’s really true.”

My head spinned to Freddy and I shot him a disbelieving look. James couldn’t have heard of that rumor. I only made it up a mere thirty seconds ago!

“Oh, sure.” Freddy said grinning, before raising his eyebrows suggestively at me, mouthing “we’re so going to talk about that later” when James wasn’t looking.

“Well, welcome to our hiding place then!” I chirped and we all crouched down behind the statue again.

And that’s when all the thoughts in my head started going wild: Why did James lie to me?

***

Lesson 8:

When life hands you lemons, you lie life away.




Any reviews / opinions would make me the happiest person ever (:
-Sally




Chapter 9: Lesson 9
  [Printer Friendly Version of This Chapter]

The question why James didn’t tell me the truth followed me into my dreams that night. I was having a nightmare and couldn’t escape. Tossing and turning in my sleep my mind set a scenery of a dark forest. I was being chased. Lies haunting me into desperation and madness until I fell down and a shadow hovered over me. I screamed at the top of my lungs and tried to get up; broken bones and deep cuts on my ankles, refraining me from doing so. I looked up to face the shadow and a shudder overtook the control of my body as I looked right into its face. A face made of bones. Nothing but. And then I blackened out.

“Wake up, Autumn!” Someone nudged my shoulders. 

I bolted up and my forehead collided with the one of the intruder of my nightly slumber.

“Shit, Autumn.” A male voice grumbled and as my vision cleared I saw it was James rubbing his face. 

“Your fault.” I grumbled and felt my own. Great, this was going to bruise. Just what I needed. “Besides, what are you even doing here? If I remember correctly this is the Head Girls’ dormitory, J.”

“Yeah, well I just wanted to remind you that there’s Quidditch practice in 40 minutes, Co-Captain.” He looked at me smugly.

Geeze. I completely forgot.

“Ughhh-” I groaned. “Just give me ten, James.”

“You better not be late, Fierce.” He winked.

“Oh come here you dolt.” I said grabbing him by his shirt and pulling him down onto the covers of my four poster bed.

James wrapped his arms around my waist and nuzzled his face into my neck. “Only five minutes.” He mumbled and I felt my eye lids getting heavy again.

Only five minutes, I repeated in my mind, before I drifted of to sleep.

***

“CRAP!” I exclaimed. “JAMES!!!” 

“Whughh-” He grumbled and tried to pull me closer.

“WE’RE LATE, LOSER.” I screeched. “PRACTISE STARTS IN 15 MINUTES. GET UP!”

“Nghhh-” James groaned.

I hopped out of my bed, suddenly wide awake and started searching for some training attire; but not before hitting James with a pillow in the face.

“Hey!” He exclaimed, faking a hurt expression and failed badly.

I laughed heartily while rushing into the bathroom and trying to smoothen down the mess that stared at me through the mirror.

I guess I set a new record because we still had 11 minutes to spare before practise began. I grabbed my broom from its handle on the wall of our dormitory and looked at James who was waiting for me on my covers, his broom leaning on the bed.

“Ready to go? We still have time to grab a bite from the kitchens! Wouldn’t want to starve during practise.” I winked and James opened the window.

“Ladies first.” He smirked and I got on my broom and out into the morning air. Wind rushing through my curls, I breathed in the scent of the october breeze and instantly felt home.

With my eyes closed I hovered high over the Hogwarts grounds and let the freedom consume me. Being on a broom always gave me a feeling of safety; a place where none of my sorrows could reach me. Just like being in Jame’s arms.

“I thought you wanted to raid the kitchens!” James called from three feet to my right, pulling me back from my reverie.

I grinned and rushed towards the ground before calling back to him. “Race you there!”

“YOU CHEATER!!” James laughed and took off behind me.

***

In the end we still managed to be 5 minutes late. Great role models we are, eh?

But that was entirely James’ fault, I swear.

I mean, I only wanted to get some take away toast and a hot chocolate from the house elves but then James happened. He asked for fried bacon. And scrambled eggs. And guess what. Making fried bacon and scrambled eggs kind of takes longer than chopping a slice of toast. But try telling that a severely hormonal seventeen year old guy with an appetite of a walrus. I wouldn’t recommend that, though.

“QUIETTTTTT!” James’ voice boomed over the pitch and the prior chaos and turmoil evaporated in thin fall air. “Go on, Autumn.” He grinned cheekily and I continued with my speech.

“As I was saying,” I looked pointedly at Freddy, who had whispered something in Ronda’s ear and was now throwing me a sheepish smile, while my best girl friend shook her head at the goofball. “you know what to do. Our match against Hufflepuff is coming up soon and yes, Freddy I know they’re too good to hurt a fly and their beaters might as well sit in the stands rather than play, we’ve heard you say that about a hundred times already – in the past week-” The team snickered and Freddy’s cheeks got a pink tinge. “BUT we want to be the best, so-”

“WE’LL GIVE OUR BEST!!” Our team bellowed pumping their fists into the air. God, I love Quidditch.

“THAT’S THE SPIRIT I’M TALKING ABOUT!” James cheered and I laughed. “NOW GET UP INTO THE AIR MIDGETS. 15 LAPS AROUND THE PITCH. NOOOOW!” He blew into his shiny silver whistle and they all took off.

“AND IF I HEAR A SINGLE GROAN OR COMPLAINT IT WILL BE 30 FOR ALL OF YOU!” I inwardly smirked. Geeze, I sound like a Slytherin.

“Nice threat, Fierce.” He wiggled his eyebrows.

“I know, right? I’ll never understand why I’m a Gryffindor..” I pondered.

“Ah, that’s because you’re so brave, my little snake.” James winked and pinched my nose.

“Hey!” I cried and flicked his forehead, making him pout. “Up in the air, Potter, or I might give you detention for disobeying your Captain’s orders.” Smirking alert!

“It’s still Co-Captain to you, missy!” He grinned, evidently enjoying our banter.

“Sure, because you’re wearing the pants in our Captainship.”

“Exactly!” He cried out. “Wait-” He thought for a second. “That was sarcasm, wasn’t it?”  

I nodded and erupted in fits of laughter before speeding away on my broom, a laughing James hot on my tail and a team of Quidditch players.

Try-Outs this year held two awesome players for us. Since we were short one beater and a chaser because Molly Weasley and Kent Springfield graduated last year, we did our best to find substitutes to fill the open positions. In Alice Longbottom we found our new chaser on the team and Brian Thomas certainly impressed us with his Beater skills – I never knew that fifth year had it in him. 

James thought it was funny how Ronda wasn’t a beater with that temper of hers but instead held the position of the third chaser next to Alice and I. Personally I thought that she fit well in her spot and I think it’s safe to say that her fiery attitude certainly helped us to score more effectively.

Fred and Brian thus formed this years Beater-duo. They instantly clicked during the first practice which made me jump around in glee, as I figured they would make our team unstoppable.

Now add the infamous James Potter as Gryffindor seeker and little Potter {aka Al} as our keeper to complete the team. Undoubtedly they inherited some major Quidditch skills from their father – both are brilliant. 

So what can I say? The House Cup was so ours.

***

Lesson 9:

Quidditch is to be taken as a serious matter. No exceptions.

Chapter 10: Lesson 10
  [Printer Friendly Version of This Chapter]

“FREDDY GROSS!” I shrieked and ran in the direction of the Great Hall, where dinner was waiting. “TAKE THAT STINKY THING AWAY FROM ME!!” 

We just finished practice and everyone was in a fantastic mood. Practice had been flawless tonight. Everyone was in an impressive shape and I was sure that with our skills and the right motivation, we could easily beat Hufflepuff in our first game this season.

“I’M A HELICOPTER, A WIZARD HELICOPTER!!! I FLY SO HIGH, IN MUGGLE SKIES, SO NO ONE SEES THE LOBSTER!!!” Fred chanted and continued to race after me while rotating his smelly Quidditch Jersey over his head.

“Give it up, Fredster, you can’t rhyme to save your life.” I yelled over my shoulder and heard Fred laughing.

“I’M A FREDKING LOBSTER, A PUFFY MUFFY LOBSTER!!! IT’S RED AND HOT, WITH POLKA DOTS, AND RAPPING LIKE A GANGSTER!!!” His voice cracked and he choked on some air in the process of trying not to burst out laughing at his own stupidity again.

“You sound like a dying cat, Frederick.” I pointed out and Freddy laughed.

“Oh but I’m your dying cat, so it’s not that bad, is it?” He winked cheesily and I had to grin.

“Sure, Fred, whatever makes you sleep at night, buddy.” I patted his head and he slung his arm around my shoulder in return.

“I AM A GHETTO GANGSTER, A-” Fred’s song died out abruptly as I clamped my hand over his mouth.

“Enough, Freddykins.” I told him. “The world has heard enough of your singing skills tonight.”

“I suppose you’re right.” He regretfully admitted.

“I always am.” I said with a smug grin.

“Of course you are.”

I turned around. That was not Freddy who said that.

“J!” I said brightly. “We thought you were already in the Great Hall with the others.”

“Actually, we were supposed to meet McGonnagal in her office 15 minutes ago. Heads stuff, did you forget?” James said with a frown while alternating his gaze between Freddy and I, whereupon he rather glared than glanced at the boy next to me.

My stomach dropped. Of course. How could I forget? We even talked about during practice. I hit my forehead. “Shit, sorry, I totally forgot!”

“I noticed that.” James said grimmly.

“I’m really sorry, J.” And I meant it. I couldn’t believe that meeting slipped my mind. I was head girl, I should be the most responsible girl in school! And here I was, being forgetful and unreliable! I looked at the ground and bit my lip.

“It’s okay, A.” He forced a smile. “I told her you didn’t feel well so you weren’t able to come.”

I looked in his eyes, a greatful look upon my features.

“So, I’d recommend you to act a bit sick during dinner.” He pointed out before falling into a reverie that caused him to start grinning. And I new what it meant.

“Or raid the kitchens instead?” I asked, trying to pull off my best puppy dog eyes.

“Exactly.” He chirped and I skipped towards him entwining our arms.

“Will you survive dinner without your two most favourite people in the world?” I asked Freddy, who nodded eagerly and swaggered to the Great Hall not before throwing me a wink.

What was that supposed to mean?

***

“Ugh!” I exclaimed completely exhausted while plopping down on James’ lap after taking arelaxing bubble bath. Tonight really had worn me out and I was glad to just spend the rest of the evening in my oversized sweater and sweatpants.

James groaned under my weight and I laughed at his pained expression. It had become a tradition for the both of us to pass the evenings on our favorite red plush couch in front of the fireplace in our Head Dorm. Most of the time we would just tell each other random things, laugh about the stupid people that we call our friends or just sit in each others arms enjoying the company of the other. Sometimes, though, the topics of our nightly talks would get more serious; revolving around the problems in my family or other things that were on our minds. Thoughts about NEWTs, about the future, what we were scared of.

To be honest, James was the best thing I could ever ask for. I don’t really know what I have done to deserve a friend like him, but what I know is that I don’t really know what I would do without him. He was my better half.

Without any warning I flung my arms around James’ neck and buried my face in his chest, inhaling his musky scent and earning a low chuckle from him.

Wait. Something was wrong here.

I sniffed again. There was something missing. He didn’t smell right. I opened my eyes and stared at his chest.

Oh. Well, that explains a lot.

In all the years I have known James, he always smelled the same. Okay, he started smelling a lot manlier when he began using after shave, but the essence still lingered. I don’t exactly know what it is, what James smells like; I think it’s a lot of things combined, like honey, summerrain, white lilies, fallen leaves and a scent I can’t really place. But with my eyes open I can definitely say that the note of James’ favorite white lily washing powder was missing.

And so was his flannel shirt.

Where was his flannel shirt?

I eyed him suspiciously and he seemed to understand where my weird expression came from. “I am hot, okay?” He said apologetically, his hands tight on my hips. When did they get there?

“Sure, you are hot, Jamesie. The hottest guy in existence.” I snickered and threw my head back. It was obvious that he meant he was feeling hot and not hot in a sense of sexy, but oh well, it was too much fun to get him flustered.

“Is that so?” What? Cocky James instead of a blushing one? When did that happen?

“Sure you are.” I rolled my eyes and he laughed.

“I miss you, Autumn.” James suddenly spilled.

I quirked an eyebrow. “But you’ve got me right here, silly.” I tightened my grip on his neck to emphasize it.

“Yes. No. I mean-” He broke off in search for the right words. “It just feels like this year is different, you know? Like we are different.” I blinked at him. “This was supposed to be our year, A-”

“But-” He cut me off.

“It was supposed to be you and me, Autumn. And now I feel like it’s only you and Freddy, while I’m standing on the sidelines.” He broke our eye contact and looked down.

Oh my. That meant that- “You are jealous of Fredster and I?”

“What? NO! I’m not jealous-” He spluttered and his cheeks went rosy.

“Aww, Jamesie!” I cuddled him. “There’s no need for you to be jealous of us. This is still our year, silly boy.”

James lifted his head and a small light lit up in his sad eyes. I can’t stand James’ sad eyes. He looks like a lost puppy and that just awards me with the urge to heal all his wounds. It’s like an instinct.

“I’m not replacing you with him, if that’s what you fear.” I tousled his mop of hair and elicited a small tug on the corners of his mouth. “Why would I want to replace my idiot when he’s the best thing that could happen to me.”

James smile brightened up our common room and I felt chills going down my arms. “You mean the world to me, love.”

Sighing I rested my head in the crook of his neck and summoned our fluffy fleece blanked from my room, before covering us both with it.

“I love you, James, you know that, right?” Absendmindedly my finger traced crooked patterns on his chest.

“I know.” He answered, kissing my hair before positioning his head on mine. “I love you, too, A.”

I smiled contentedly and felt my body grow weaker by the second. The day had been exhausting and I dearly needed to stock up on some rest.

“A?” I heard James’ voice through a layer of fog.

“Mhm?” I managed.

“Oh.. nevermind.” He mumbled

***

Lesson 10:

Don't ever let Freddy's singing get out of control. 


http://www.harrypotterfanfiction.com