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Chapter 8: Deal or Date
When I joined Lily for dinner later that day I found her sitting with our fellow 7th year girls Mary MacDonald and Alice Hastings. We had lived together in the same dormitory since 1st year but we rarely hung out, because Mary and Alice preferred to spend time with their friends from Ravenclaw. Mary was a tall lank girl with short messy blonde hair that was always in two braids, she wore thick yellow spectacles that were always pushed down her nose and if one word could describe her it would be ‘random’. Alice was the opposite of Mary with her short plump build, she had shoulder length light brown hair and the bluest eyes known to man, and in the 7 years I had known her I had never heard her curse or say anything bad about someone.
“Hi Effie, excited about the Hogsmeade trip tomorrow?” Alice greeted when I sat down across from her.
I shrugged, “Not terribly, I’ll most likely go alone,”
“I thought you would ask …” Lily stopped mid-sentence as she noticed the alarmed look on my face. “… Someone.”
I had found out during the day that no body except for James and his friends knew about Remus, and I would rather it remained like that. If Mary and Alice hadn’t heard by now I wouldn’t want to ruin the ignorance. Besides, Lily had already blurted out about the crush once, there was no need for a second round.
“Decided against it, we weren’t meant to be,” I told her, receiving puzzled stares from Mary and Alice. Lily opened her mouth to reply but let it go; probably realizing this wasn’t a conversation to have with the two other girls listening in.
“Who are you too taking?” Lily asked instead trying to change the subject, which I appreciated.
“Fallon Gilbert asked me out two weeks ago, almost right after the trip was announced …” Mary started rambling about her date and I was suddenly reminded why we didn’t hang out, she rambled quite often and you could never get a word in. While Mary was telling about Fallon, I stole a glance towards a group of boys sitting nearby; they seemed to be deep in conversation, all leaning over the table to make sure that no one could eavesdrop. My stare shifted to Lily who like me had her attention elsewhere, she was looking in the same direction as I had but her eyes was set on the guy sitting beside Addens – Matthew Cunningham. She seemed to be thinking, but when Matthew looked up she gave him a smile before noticing me and lowered her head.
“You are lucky, Mary,” I said as Mary had finished talking. I would never have considered Fallon as a date for the mere reason that he had shown a strong dislike for Montrose Magpies and was friends with Addens, but I couldn’t deny that he was somewhat good looking, even though he was a bit of a show off.
Alice was taking her long time boyfriend Frank Longbottom who she had been with since the end of 5th year; I always thought of them as the ideal couple, and knew quite a few who agreed with me.
When Lily was finished telling about her date with Matthew and my terrible matchmaking skills the conversation was turned to me again, I was sure as an attempt to make me feel better.
“How’s the practise going? Is it safe to do some betting?” Mary asked cheerful receiving a stern look from lily as she did.
“The team is looking good, we defiantly have potentials,” I answered with honesty, though Mary thought I was lying and her smile faded a bit.
“So Addens wasn’t lying. I had hoped he was,” She said and sighed.
“Addens?” I narrowed my eyes “What has he been saying?”
“Promise not to get mad,” I promised “He mentioned that you were a rubbish captain, but that’s not what I referred too,” She quickly added “He wouldn’t count on winning the cup this year, he has been saying so to everyone,”
I eyed the boy who tried to chat up some girl, oblivious to my glare. I made a mental note to confront him about it later.
Alice and Mary left soon after to go meet up with Frank and Fallon. After they left Lily took the opportunity to remind me yet again to ignore Addens, and asked me not to get in any trouble as she wouldn’t bail me out, again.
To avoid the crowded Gryffindor tower I occupied myself with Lily in the Heads Common-room later that evening playing wizard chess. Lily was a brilliant chess player and was continuingly destroying my players, I on the other hand was rubbish at it and had no idea what moves I made. I had been quick to learn that chess was not my forte, and I had only won a game against Lily once but I assumed she had intended for me to win though she never told me.
“Checkmate,” Lily finally exclaimed. I groaned loudly and fell down on the couch I had been sitting in. “You’ll never learn will you?” She asked with a wink as she started to pack away the game. I stuck out my tongue.
The door opened and another groan escaped me as the four boys I had tried to escape walked in, one laughing louder than the next. They continued through the room until Sirius noticed Lily and me.
“Hello ladies,” Sirius bowed theatrically. I couldn’t help but notice that Remus was hiding behind Peter avoiding looking my way.
“If it isn’t the gentlemen,” Lily said sarcastic. “Why aren’t you in the common room?”
“Too many students,” James grumbled.
I snorted “Since when has that stopped you,”
“Well aren’t we cheeky today,” James said bitterly. It had been two months since the incident on the train and it seemed that James had yet to forgive me. I hated being on James’ bad side, because we had always been somewhat close in our earlier years and even though we were never the best of friends we had our own inside jokes and I had always felt like he was my brother. Not only my big brother, because he wasn’t always overprotective, but also my annoying little brother.
“I could say the same to you,” I grunted with a low voice. Lily shot me a look telling me to behave, but if he wasn’t behaving then why should I.
“James, I believe we are in here for a reason, which is not arguing,” Peter reminded and the two of them went up to James’ room, leaving Sirius and Remus in the Common-room.
“So…” Lily peeped after a bit. I shifted around the couch uncomfortable, knowing something humiliating would happen. Sure enough, not long after did Sirius make a similar noise and then a mischievous smile appeared on his face.
“Remus, didn’t you want to show Effie something,” Remus looked almost as alarmed as I did, but before any of us could reply Lily had joined the game.
“Oh yes, I heard you say that as well,” I gave her a devious glare, but she wouldn’t have noticed as she was looking at Remus, so was Sirius and now I was too. The boy looked if possible even more pale than normal but he eyes were narrow.
“Right,” Remus began when the situation became too much, “Effie, can I speak with you privately?”
“No!” I squealed quickly.
“Oh silly head. Just go talk to Remus,” Lily practically pushed me out of the Common-room.
Being alone with Remus in a dark corridor was as awkward as situations get. We were both trying our best to look anywhere but at each other, and none of us knew what to say. Even though I pretended to be examining portrait to Remus’ left I managed to get a glimpse of his expression, he seemed to be thinking.
“I’m sorry,” We said in chorus. I searched Remus’ face for the reason behind his apology but he looked just as confuse as I was.
“Why are you sorry?” Yet again we had spoke at the same time. I chuckled and asked Remus to go first.
“I can’t go out with you,” While I appreciate honesty, I would have preferred if he had made up an excuse about a sick aunt he was visiting tomorrow, but Remus choose the honest path.
“I understand, I’m sorry for …” I thought about my answer for a while. What exactly was I sorry for? I couldn’t tell him I was sorry for having a crush on him or that Lily told the whole world. Well, she told James.
“You don’t need to apologize for anything, it’s not you. I just can’t date you, or anyone,” Remus explained, I wasn’t sure if he was honest or being nice.
“Why can’t you date anyone, that’s ridiculous,” I looked at him wide-eyed “Bloody Merlin, are you homosexual?”
“What? No!” He answered hastily before falling into hysterics.
“I don’t see the problem then, unless you are secretly married which I doubt very much,”
“Thank you for not doubting my sexuality,” He said faking a hurt voice. I gave him a wink as he continued.
“I wish I could be straightforward with you and tell you the reason, but I can’t,” Something in his voice made me believe him.
“It is okay Remus. Just don’t get all awkward around me please? I’ll promise not to jump on you”
“That’s a deal! If you will stop hiding under tables as well,”