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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

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