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Chapter 54: Exams
Disclaimer:The OC's and parts of the plot of this story belong to me. The story title comes from a song of the same time by Taylor Swift and everything else was created by J.K Rowling. Thank you so much for reading!
"You have fifty minutes to complete the exam. You may begin" The moment the examiner's booming voice echoed through the Great Hall, quills began to scratch furiously and then, N.E.W.T's had truly begun.
The Charms exam was the first up. Coralie, Lily, Alice, James, Sarah and Nathaniel were among the roughly twenty students sitting the exam. Much like almost every other subject, the exam had two parts to it- a theory part and then a practical.
The theory was first and was mildly difficult though when Coralie's eyes checked the clock, she could Sarah grin widely at her paper- it was clear that someone knew exactly what she was doing.
Coralie had to bite back a giggle, she couldn't see the examiner's believing her if she told them she'd be laughing about how enthusiastic her classmates were about the exam. It sounded like something James would say, in order to be a little smart. She didn't really want her exam taken away.
The practical was even easier and then, the first exam was over- just like that. One down, seven more to go.
Defence Against the Dark Arts was the next day. It was schedule to run just after the fifth year students had sat their Muggle Studies exam, so Coralie was able to catch Angus as he made his way out.
"How do you think you went?" Angus shrugged his shoulders in response and Coralie just smiled. "I bet you did wonderfully"
"Bonne chance" Angus whispered in reply before disappearing off, most likely to study for the Potions exam that he had the next day.
"Is everyone ready?" Alice asked when Coralie joined the rest of her friends against the wall, some of them sent Alice odd looks and went back to trying to learn the entire of the seventh year class in the span of two or three minutes.
"I bet Miranda would pass if she were here" Kiki commented fiercely, throwing a glare at Remus who stared down at his feet meekly.
Miranda was still unconscious in the Hospital Wing, it had almost been a week since her attack and she was yet to show any signs of improvement. Madam Pomfrey was beginning to worry and Dumbledore, as well as Miranda's parents who had come to visit had agreed that if she was not showing improvement by the end of the week then she would be sent off to St. Mungo's.
Kiki only took this as a reason to treat Remus even worse despite her friends’ demands.
"She would, but she'd been freaking out even more than all of us put together" Lily smiled, trying to break the tension between the two friendship groups- even if, not so long ago they'd all been remarkably closer.
"You disgust me," Kiki stated, disappearing in a crowd of Hufflepuffs.
"Ignore her Remus, she's still touchy on the subject" Coralie explained and Remus shrugged his shoulders.
"I just hope they find out who did it" Mary commented shyly, despite believing that Remus was innocent she still hadn't quite gotten used to the idea of being friends with a werewolf though she tried to hide it as best as she could.
"Any leads on that necklace?" Peter asked Coralie and she shook her head solemnly. She had planned on giving the necklace to Dumbledore but he had advised her to send it to Jacob, he had voiced his suspicions that the Ministry wouldn't put it with a high level of importance.
It had taken the necklace longer to get to Jacob; he had been helping Violet as she had moved back to France and into their old home in the past week. But since, he'd been working on it almost every hour of the day; every day of the week was yet to find anything substantial enough.
It was keeping everyone on the edge of their toes.
"You may enter" An examiner, a different one from the one who had been sitting in for their Charms exam declared. "Please enter in an orderly fashion and take your seats"
Before any of the seventh years really knew it, their exams were over and they were practically free. So, of course- they had celebrating accordingly.
The Marauders had gone crazy with pranks, they had charmed the suits of armour to block doorways whenever someone tried to get passed them, toilets had been covered with invisible foil which made a usual trip to the bathroom becoming suddenly a lot more difficult.
They'd been targeting the girls as well, hexing their goblets are breakfast so they poured Pumpkin juice over themselves, charmed little singing cupids to follow them around during the day and swapped their shampoo's around.
They girls had taken it lightly but made sure to get each of the boys back in their own ways. Brooms had been 'beautified' with diamantes, glitter and different colour ribbons. Clothes had been charmed pink and the boys had even woken up covered in honey some mornings which left them all wondering how the girls had done it so quietly while they had been asleep.
The boy's had gotten to each other, as had the girls and so Coralie found one morning that Lily had charmed her pillow in the middle of the night and so she was awoken with a fright the next morning when she rolled into her pillow to find a picture of Nathaniel staring back at her.
Other pranks had not been so nice, the same day as the pillow change-up, Coralie found herself standing at the bottom of the stairs mid-kiss with Nathaniel, drenched in yellow liquid- she had looked up to see Shelena standing there with a now empty bucket.
"That's fish oil," She called down, "You should try to avoid it Cors" And with that, she had disappeared.
On their last night as seventh years, The Marauders organised a mini-party for them in the Common Room. Other year levels joined them but there were no members of other houses, the Marauders had made sure of that.
The party was in full swing within minutes of the music being played, people were dancing all over the place. Lily and James were in the middle of what seemed to be a circle that formed around them by the rest of the seventh years, bar Miranda and Shelena- even Kiki had joined though she stayed close to Mary.
The circle spun around a few times, things were being shouted around it though no one really knew what they were hearing or saying, really.
Coralie could see a camera flash from somewhere outside the circle and watched as James kissed Lily full on the lips, causing the rest of them to go made with screams and claps despite the fact the pair had been together for a short while now.
Even though she was feeling a little dizzy from the spinning, Coralie couldn't help but smile at her friends as she focused on their faces. They all looked so happy, even without Miranda which Coralie knew was at the front of everyone's minds. But she also knew that Miranda would have hated being the cause of a bad time. Maybe that was the reason they kept spinning, just for Miranda.
At some point they must have stopped because Coralie suddenly found herself sitting outside the Portrait Hole with a letter addressed to her in her hand.
She stared down at it, before she leaned up against the wall and let out a deep sigh. She wasn't entirely sure she wanted to read what was on the other side of the envelope; Merlin knows she had bad experiences with letters in the past. What if it was just another one of those?
Somehow, Coralie managed to talk herself into it and slipped open the envelope. She was glad to learn it wasn't a letter from Leo, though she was disappointed when she realised it wasn't from Jacob either.
It seemed much more professional and so she, nervously, started to read.
Dear Mademoiselle Bennett,
My name is Cassandra Dubois and I am healer at Saint-Joseph Hôpital pour Maladies et Blessures Magiques. It is with great regret that I must report to you that on March 5th, your dear friend Mademoiselle Emma Melot of a muggle disease called pneumonia which affected her lungs. Mademoiselle Melot spoke of you often and wished for you to come and visit her. A funeral service will be held on the twenty second of July for Mademoiselle Melot, here in France. A representative of the Melot’s will be in contact with you within the next couple of days to discuss the items left to you on Mademoiselle Melot’s last will.
I am deeply sorry for your loss,
Healer at Saint-Joseph’s.
Coralie let the letter slipping out of her hands and onto the floor, before she wrapped her arms around herself and let out a strangled sob. Wonderful, beautiful Emma. No. Coralie didn’t want to believe a word of it, she couldn’t believe a word of it.
It had to be a joke, some sick joke played by Leo or Shelena or some else but it couldn’t be true. Not Emma, anyone but Emma. She’d always been the one to joke about how the two of them were going to grow up and marry well, have lots of children and then be placed in the same retirement village- talking about the old times and drinking galleons of tea until the day they died together. They had promised each other- they’d used their secret handshake that no one else had ever managed to copy despite how much they tried.
It was Coralie and Emma, Emma and Coralie- best friends and always together until the end. That was all a lie now, they weren’t going to grow old together and watch each other have children and grandchildren- at least not be each other’s side. With a loud sob, she picked the letter back off the floor and stuffed it inside her pocket.
She left the party quickly, dodging between her dancing friends so she could make her way out of the Common Room- she only just made it outside the portrait hole when she collapsed to the floor in tears. She wanted to be able to walk back inside and throw her arms around her friends and tell them what had happened but something stopped her. She wanted them to enjoy their night and they couldn’t do that if they were worrying about her.
“Bennett?” Coralie’s head snapped around at this, standing behind her was Shelena- a blank mask over her face.
“Sorry, I can leave” she whispered, preparing to stand up and go find somewhere else to sit when Shelena sat down next to her and wrapped her arms around her.
“What’s happened?” Shelena asked this with so much worry in her voice that Coralie found herself completely speechless.
“My best friend died” Coralie replied once she finally managed to get her voice back. She could hear Jacob in the back of her mind telling her not to trust Shelena, that it would only end badly but something deep inside Coralie told her otherwise.
“I’m sorry” Shelena answered immediately before the two of them fell silent. Shelena squeezed Coralie’s shoulder slightly as she tried to hold back more tears. “We need to stop this” Coralie frowned at this and turned to stare at Shelena who was looking solemn out at the wall in front of them. “I don’t want to fight anymore”
“What?” Coralie whispered in reply and Shelena turned to stare at her.
“I’m sick of fighting, we aren’t exactly going to find what this stupid curse is going to do to us if we are too busy fighting” Shelena said furiously, glaring at her fingernails which she began to pick at.
“What about our families?” Coralie asked, her eyes widening slightly.
“You mean what about Leo?” Shelena paused her for a moment and bit down on her bottom lip. “I’ll deal with him, besides I’m the one it’s going to hurt not him”
“Okay” Coralie whispered in response as Shelena stood up before offering her hand to Coralie and pulling her up. With a small smile passed between the two of them, they headed back into the Common Room and joined back up with the party.
Authors Note: I just, I don't even have words to explain how excited I am for this Friday. I don't want to give you guys some massive speech sort of thing this chapter because I can always do that next chapter, this is sort of my last proper Authors Note before the end!
Let me know your thoughts of this chapter, who do you think the werewolf is and do you believe Shelena with this whole 'truce' thing? Psycho, that one is!
So I hope you all enjoyed this chapter, I'd like to thank all of you for your support in the last few chapters and for the last time ever on this story, I say to you- I'll see you Friday.