There is absolutely no way I could do justice about Sirius Black’s kissing skills by describing it to you.  Of course it doesn’t mean I couldn’t try.  If I was allowed only one word, it would be flawless.

Apart from the surprise factor, which provides an extra chill down one’s spine, the wizard knows what he’s doing.  I mean, the way he pushed me against the wall alone should be worth at least a hundred points to Gryffindor.

I know, I know, I shouldn’t have said that out loud to him, but it was stronger than me.  Besides, it made him smile that half smile I love so much.  And he’s a competitive guy, which granted me another hundred point kiss right away.

Too bad we heard Snape coming down the hall.  All right, Sirius heard it.  I was totally off.  Anyway, Sirius finished up the kiss, squeezed my waist with his strong hand (yes, he had his hand in my waist during the kiss, thank you) and vanished.

I was physically unable to move and, in spite of being two steps from my common room’s entrance, Snape caught me.

“Another brilliant excuse for me tonight, Miss Eaton?” He asked me with that slimy voice of his.

“What?  No.  I mean, I forgot my password” I said, really proud of being able to think of such a clever excuse so fast.

Snape frowned and looked up at the portrait right above my head.  It was a picture of a very old wizard, long grey beard and a funny looking red hat.  He wore a rather tough expression on his face.

“Mr. Pickery, how do you do?” Snape asked the wizard in the picture.

“Not so well, Severus.  This school is not the same anymore” and he looked down at me “but, thank you for asking.  You are, as usual, very kind.”

“Don’t mention it, Mr. Pickery” Snape said, and looking straight to my eyes, went on with the little chat.  “What is it that is bothering you, sir?  Being the Head Boy I could, perhaps, intervene.”

Now I knew how Snape got his information on the whereabouts of the Gryffindor boys – sucking up to the castle paintings! 

“In my days, young ladies restrained themselves to their dormitories after hours, instead of promoting obscenities in front of the public eye!”

I couldn’t help but smile.  I know it wasn’t absolutely the appropriated reaction, but I just didn’t think.  After two hundred points I simply didn’t care.

“I’ll see what I can do about it, Mr. Pickery, thank you.”

Snape took me by the arm and started dragging me away from my house.

“What do you think you’re doing?  Let go of me!” I protested, pulling my arm away from his filthy hand.

“I’m taking you… to the headmaster” he answered, hesitantly.

“You are, aren’t you?  And what the hell are you going to tell him?  You have nothing on me, Severus.  Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to bed” and I turned around.

He was fuming, but still managed to ask.

“Without a password?”

“It was just temporary memory loss.  It’s all back now” I whispered the password so he wouldn’t hear it and walked through the entrance.  Before the passage closed, I got to hear him say “Damn you, Black!”

Needless to say I knew I would have to deal with Snape later.  I didn’t care a bag of magic beans, though.  He, after all, was the cause of the situation that led me to get kissed by Sirius in the first place.  I shall never, ever forget that.

I finally went to bed and was incapable of sleeping.  My heart was pounding like a rabbit’s and I couldn’t stop reliving the recent events in my head.  Before six a.m. the next morning I was up and dressed for class, waiting for Claire, my best friend and roommate, to wake up – I had to tell her every detail before first class began.

I talked non stop all the way down to the Great Hall and during breakfast.  We both sighed noisily when I was finished.  Merlin, how good it felt to just say it!

“Cora?” Claire called me as we walked to Potions.


“What next?  Do you think he’s going to ask you out or something?”

That was a very sad thing to ask.  How could Claire be so greedy?  I got to kiss him.  Twice.  What else did she expect?

“I wish, Claire, I really do.  But let’s face it: it’s not going to happen.  When did you ever see Sirius with the same girl more than once?”

“But you could try, couldn’t you?” She asked hopefully.

“I don’t want to spoil my perfect Sirius moment with a rejection, Claire.  I won’t do it.”

Claire nodded in agreement and looked as disappointed as I suddenly felt.  After a few hours of self pity, I took a deep breath and decided to be happy about what happened, instead of mourn about my Siriusless future.  

Anyway, as certain as my Siriusless future was my Snapeful present. 

“Enjoying your lunch, Miss Eaton?” Snape’s slimy voice made me loose all my craving for the treacle tart in front of me.  I looked at him and blinked slowly, as waiting for him to get to his real point.

Realizing I wasn’t about to chit chat with him, he went on.  “I have quite a special route planned for your patrol tonight.  A little help to prevent you from getting distracted from your prefect duties. Once again.”

I felt my blood boiling from his try to intimidate and control me.  I wouldn’t stand for this kind of harassment.  A few unpublishable expressions were on their way out of my throat when I saw a hand on Snape’s shoulder.

“Trying to charm the girls, Severus?” a sweet voice said before I could spot its owner.  “You could begin by getting a twentieth century haircut, I’d say.”

Snape growled and stepped back as to escape Sirius touch.  Sirius was smiling at him and, instead of answering, Snape just turned around and left.  Too many battles lost in the past, I guess.

“Thanks for that” I said to Sirius with my best smile on.

“My pleasure” he answered winking at me.

He lingered for just a second longer, enough for my melting inside and headed back to his table.

A little moan escaped Claire’s lips.

“He’s cute, isn’t he?” I said.

“How are you going to manage not throwing yourself at him?”

“I’ve been practicing that for quite a while now.  I know a thing or two about self control when it comes to Sirius, Claire.”

It was only partially true.  The words ‘my pleasure’ kept reverberating inside my head for days after that. 

The nasty part was that Snape wasn’t kidding when he implied he would watch out for my prefect duties.  He spent the entire patrol that night walking two steps behind me.  I almost threw myself from the top tower just to see if he would follow me down.

“Well, well, isn’t your little friend awfully quiet tonight?” Snape’s rhetorical question sounded like acid burning my ears.

“What is the matter, Eaton, isn’t he brave enough to wonder on the hallways without corrupted prefects available?”

So, that’s what he thinks is happening!  He thinks I’m bait to get to Sirius! I thought.

“You must be desperate in need of things to do, or you wouldn’t be trying to get to Sirius through me.”

“Your feeble attempt of dismissing me will not work, Eaton.  Keep walking.”

I sighed and prayed for a quick end.

The next morning, all other prefects were patting me on the shoulder, as to let me know how sorry they were about Snape’s sick behavior towards me – which had an incredible resemblance to detention.  I simply nodded and accepted my destiny.  I figured that if I made a big fuss about it, he would give me an even harder time.

Now, the good part was that somehow Sirius heard about it.  And felt guilty.  And impelled to talk to me.

I was walking outside to Herbology when he caught my pace.

“Hi there, Cora.  How are you doing?”

I forgot to breathe for a couple of seconds and answered shyly to him.  “Fine, you?”

“I’m good.  Listen, I hear Snape has been chasing you around during patrols lately.  How much is it bothering you?”

“How much?  I’m not sure, maybe as much as a migraine, I guess” I answered chuckling.

He smiled back.

“I’m sorry about that… I was thinking, maybe I can help getting his mind into something else” he offered.

“Never mind, Sirius, that’s exactly the reason why his been stocking me.  If you stay away long enough, he’ll give up by himself” I couldn’t believe I was telling Sirius to stay away from me – was I demented?

“He won’t know it’s me.  Besides, I’ll do it far from you, so it’ll attract him to some other place and leave you alone” he explained.  “And I owe you.”

I stopped in front of class and turned to face him.  I quickly closed my eyes not to get lost in his.

“Why are you asking me this?  Isn’t your mind set already?”

He chortled at my observation.  “It is, but I needed your approval because I might have to mess things up a little bit and it might cause you prefects some trouble cleaning up.”

It was my turn to laugh.  “What the hell – go ahead.  If you make him mad enough, I’m willing to work until dawn, for all it’s worth.”

He grabbed my hand and kissed it.  “Thanks!” he said turning to go.

Wait, wait!  I’m not finished!  That’s not yet the kiss I got him to give me again.  Not quite. 

Two more occasions of patrolling with Snape as my shadow went by and no sign of Sirius.  One would think Snape was about to move on, but he was stronger than that when it came down to bringing hell on someone else’s life.  I barely saw Sirius during the day either, my life was going back to plain boring.

“Why the long face, Eaton?  Your boyfriend doesn’t have any more favors to ask you in exchange of a lame snogging section?”

Now, of all the nasty things Snape said to bug me, that one really hurt.  That wasn’t a payment kiss!  It was a thank you kiss, or a heat of the moment kiss… A turned to him fuming, my hands tight into fists.

“Watch out your mouth, Snape.  Next time I’ll hex you in self defense!  No portraits will dare to defend you against it!”

“Easy, easy there” he said smiling ironically at me.  “You don’t need to get so defensive just because your shining armor didn’t come to rescue you.  What did you expect?  Eternal love?  You should know better.”

“Nice try, Snape” I said suddenly getting his game.  “You won’t have me on your side in this insane hunt.”

He growled, muttered a couple of inaudible words and started to speed up in front of me.

“Hey” I heard a very low voice calling me.  I turned around to spot Sirius.  “Tomorrow night it is!”  He warned me.  I nodded in response and looked back to the corridor to check on Snape.  “Great answer, by the way” he said before disappearing.

Well, well, what do you know?  Turns out my shining armor is taking close care of me, preventing Snape from doing anything beyond keeping me hostage for a couple of hours every night.  I wish I could rub it in Snape’s face.

Apart from a slight greeting on the Great Hall next morning, I had no more contact with Sirius the next day.  I should have asked him what the prank would be about, as to know what to expect.  Just in case I really had to end up rubbing the floor until dawn, I decided to wear my oldest pants and shirt underneath my cloak that night. 

Snape assigned the routes and, as already usual, left me last.

“Eaton, you and I down the east wing tonight.”

Without further ado, we moved on.  Snape decided to walk ahead of me, just like the night before.  I couldn’t help but look back every once and while to check on anything unusual.

We were almost half way through when we saw Peeves popping in front of Snape.

“Pixies are having a blast on the third floor, Severus!” He said very much satisfied with the breaking news.

Snape frowned and asked “Where exactly?”

“No need to be more specific!  They’re everywhere!”

The head boy looked at me with piercing eyes and rushed to the stairs.  I had a feeling I didn’t need to rush – if Sirius wanted Snape to be on the third floor, I’d better be late for their date.

A couple of minutes later, I found my colleagues throwing spells around to freeze the damned pixies.  I played along and started doing the same, with not much enthusiasm.

Snape had a particularly thicker crowd above his head and I noticed they were leading him towards a corner.  He kept on shooting his spells and the prefects’ bathroom door opened right in front of him.  Altogether, the pixies grabbed him by his cloak and threw him inside the bathroom’s huge tub.

We heard several ‘pop’ sounds of the pixies disappearing and rushed to see what happened to Snape.  He was drenched in mud from head to toe, already standing up and I swear to Merlin I saw a little smoke going up his head.

A flash blinded us all and we couldn’t quite catch where it came from.  Without a word, Snape walked out of the tub, grabbed his wand from the filthy mud and pointed it to himself in an attempt to clean up.  Nothing happened.

“It’s probably jammed…” one of the boys said pointing to the useless wand.

Dripping mud all around him, Snape started walking towards the dungeons.  In a rather low tone, I heard him say “Damn you, Gryffindors!”

We all waited paralyzed for him to be out of sight and spent the next five minutes laughing as loud and uncontrollably as I ever remember laughing in my life.  All of a sudden, all the nights walking around dark corridors had paid off – it wouldn’t get any better.  Unless, I thought, I could get a little loving from Mr. Black.

Not tonight… We cleaned the whole thing up, not to let any proofs lying around.  None of us wanted Snape to get revenge out of it.  When all the mud was gone, it was a little past midnight and I slowly walked back to my common room, as to give Sirius the opportunity to find me.  He didn’t take it.  Wake up, Cinderella, the prince is gone.

Next morning at breakfast, every student held a pamphlet with a picture of Snape covered in mud.  The headline read ‘The Slytherin Head Boy Beauty Secret’.  Even Dumbledore had one in hand.

Snape was nowhere to be found, but the Gryffindor boys where all there, receiving glances from the whole school.  Sirius was especially gorgeous and I was especially miserable.

When I was leaving my last class before lunch, the Professor told me to go to Dumbledore’s office.  Now you have it, I thought.  It was all too easy, after all. 

Besides Dumbledore, Snape was there holding the pamphlet.

“Hello, Miss Eaton, thank you for attending so promptly” Dumbledore politely said, pointing to the chair right beside Snape.  I simply nodded and took the place.

“Severus tells me you might know something about last night’s incident during prefects’ patrol?”

I looked at Snape trying to guess how distorted from reality his words to Dumbledore had been.

“Well, Professor, I know what every other Prefect knows.  We chased after the pixies on the third floor and I saw some of them take Severus inside the bathroom.  That’s all.”

“I meant about the backstage, Eaton, Black and his friends” Snape said between his teeth.

“Calm down, will you, Severus?” Dumbledore asked.

“I swear Professor, I didn’t know anything.  And Sirius is my friend, but I don’t think he has anything to do with this whole thing.”

“She’s lying, Professor!  She’s been helping Black with his pranks and she sure knew about this one!”

“Enough, Severus!  Miss Eaton, you are dismissed, thank you” Dumbledore stood up and showed us both to the door.  “I agreed to listen to what she had to say and I did.  Now, if we don’t have any further proof of your theory, let’s put the whole thing in the past, shall we?”

The both of us walked side by side for a few moments, until Sirius showed up.

“You!” Snape shouted, hand in his wand.

“Step back, Snape, I came to talk to Cora!”

“This is not over, Black, I’ll get you” Snape retorted.

Sirius held my hand and we walked outside to be alone.

“Why did Dumbledore call you?” He finally asked me.

“Snape asked him to interrogate me.  He said I knew you planned everything and wanted me to tell.  But don’t worry, I didn’t say anything” I answered sadly.

“I’m not worried about what you said about me, Cora, I just don’t want to get you into trouble” he sounded honest.

I wanted to ask him why he didn’t come find me after the prank, but instead I just said “You didn’t.”

Disappointment was all over my face.  I knew I wasn’t supposed to raise any expectations about Sirius, but it was stronger than me.  I was numb during all my afternoon classes.  It was really lame to have Sirius pitting me – and it was my entire fault.

I didn’t want to go down for dinner.  Claire insisted, she said there was no reason for me to be depressed over this and dragged me to the Great Hall. 

When we opened the door, there stood Snape and Sirius apparently arguing.  A little audience watching the so far verbal fight.

“There she is” Snape said looking my way.

I looked at Sirius, trying to understand what was happening.  He didn’t give me any clues.

“This is between you and I, Black, or are you going to hide again behind your puppet?”

“What?” I asked, clearly insulted.

“Watch you mouth!  I can stand on my own, you’re the one using Cora to get to me” Sirius responded.

“Which was, indeed, a bad choice.  Once I blew out your double agent, you lost interest in her anyway.”

I was blushing feverously now.  I couldn’t face Sirius or any of the twenty people staring at us.

Out of the blue, Sirius walked towards me and grabbed my face with both his hands.

“You know he’s wrong, right?  I would never use you” he whispered to me.  “The only reason I didn’t look for you anymore after that night was to keep you out of trouble.”

I had two choices now: agree and go back to my dorm or call his bluff.

“Prove it” I said.

And he did, right in front of our little audience.  Five hundred points to Gryffindor.


The end

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