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The Name of the Game by churro12
Chapter 4: The Joy of Fuzzy Socks
Ella Moore is the best friend ever. Like, no argument. She is the Han Solo to my Chewbacca. I would jump in front of a flying bullet for her. Hell, I’d jump in front of a flying ice cube for her, and that’s saying something.
Hmm, I really should get over my irrational disliking of ice cubes. But, then again, what’s wrong with liking my ice crushed? I just don’t like the way those little half-circled “cubes” fit in the glass, or feel on my teeth…
Wait, I’m off topic here. Anyhoo, I love Ella Moore. Why? Because she let me wear her fuzzy socks.
Now, I know I sound as over-dramatic as Ella herself here, but for us, this is a big deal. You see, Ella’s a freak about socks. She takes care of them like they’re those baby monkeys you see on TV wearing the cute little diapers. She has a special washing machine and dryer set at home JUST for her socks, because she says it keeps out the unwanted lint.
And it really pays off. Wearing a pair of Ella’s socks is like putting your foot into a puppy, if the puppy was all soft and fluffy on the inside and not all gross and smushy. But even her usual socks have nothing on her fuzzy socks; my feet are in heaven right now. The reason she let me wear them?
Because James Potter freakin’ found his Spiderman boxers in MY purse, and she pitied the crap out of me for it.
Right now the four of us were all sitting on Melanie’s bed in our comfy short shorts and baggy t-shirts. It’d been about a half-hour since the dance ended, and we were all pooped.
Not literally, ‘cause that’d be really gross. Like, I was internally gagging gross.
“Err, Lils? Are you okay? I know you’re upset about the whole Potter thing but don’t hurt yourself…” I hear Mel say.
Apparently I wasn’t just gagging internally.
“What? Oh- yeah, sorry. I was just thinking about poop.”
“Miss Evans, darling, Roger says you have some serious issues.”
Great. Now Cassie’s imaginary monkey friend Roger thought I was the one who had issues. Probably because of my stupid short attention span and lack of ability to keep anything to myself.
Suddenly, through my peripheral vision, I see three flashes of light come from the boy’s dormitory window. There’s our cue.
Mel and Ella look at each other and nod, and Ella says, “Oh no! I feel faint! I have the sudden urge to walk down stairs, I just don’t think I could handle it if I didn’t! Cassandra, dear, walk me down to the common room!”
Mel and I exchange glances that say, “Our friend is an overdramatic freak,” but obviously it worked somehow because Cassie quickly jumped up to walk down with Ella. We just roll our eyes and follow.
We get to the common room just in time to hear Cassie gasp as she looks around. The guys have covered the room with candles, Cassie’s second favorite flammable object, and they’re standing in a perfect line in that way that only the Marauders can.
And that’s when they burst into song. Well, tickle me Elmo.
“Hey, hey, hey,
We’re sorry ‘bout that other night,
When we yelled and made you cry..."
The rest of the song contained some sweetness, but mostly weird lyrics about unicorn mating rituals and the anatomy of black-toothed squirrels. But those parts were just added in for rhyming purposes.
Cassie giggled at them once they were done, “Oh, guys! You should really learn how to harmonize.”
Sirius smiled big, “Here, Callor, we also wanted to give you this.”
He took out a silver locket and handed it to her. I knew what was inside it, of course, since I DID help make it.
Yeah, you heard me.
She opened it up to see that, on the left side, was a picture of seven-year-old Cassie and a boy our age, her brother a couple months before he died. On the right side there were thousands of stars.
“It’s the sky above the cemetery your brother is in, so, in a way, you’re always with him,” James tells her softly.
A tear starts to run down her face, but she quickly wipes it away, “Y’know guys, that’s really kind of creepy. But I love it anyways. GROUP HUG!”
We all smile and huddle in for a giant bear hug.
And it’s nice.
“So, in conclusion, I would choose the llama kiss,” Remus finishes his argument.
We were sitting in the boys’ dormitory playing truth or dare again, and Lupin had just finished his truth. It was now Peter’s turn.
“Err… Uhh… This is too much pressure!”
“Just choose someone and ask them truth or dare!” Mel rolled her eyes.
That’s when Remus felt the need to step in and protect his lumpy little friend, “Hey, it’s not his fault he doesn’t know who to pick.”
Here we go.
“I’m sorry, Lupin, I didn’t realize it was so difficult to choose a person to ask a simple question.”
“There’s an entirety of eight people here, Barrett! And it’s not just one question, after asking the initial ‘truth or dare’ he would have to create either a truth or a dare! That’s a lot of pressure for one person!”
“Guys, I think I’m ready to pick someone-“ Peter tried to interject, not wanting ANOTHER one of Remus and Melanie’s famous heated debates to ruin our nice evening. They both gave him a death glare, and his response was immediate silence.
“First of all,” Mel continued to speak angrily at Remus, “there are only seven people for him to choose from since he can’t pick himself. Secondly, it’s obviously not so difficult considering the rest of us have done it just fine.”
Remus narrowed his eyes, he obviously didn’t have a smart retort, but then his eyes widened as he thought of something to say, “You’re right. You seemed to have absolutely no problem answering Lily’s question about me the last time we played this game.”
Everyone’s jaw dropped, including Melanie’s; no one had brought up Mel’s admittance of her crush on Remus since that night. But, being Melanie, she quickly regained her composure and prepared to respond.
“You know what, Lupin, you’re absolutely right.”
Everyone’s jaws dropped once again, this time including Remus. Melanie Barrett NEVER admitted to being wrong.
And that’s when she proceeds to grab Sirius Black by the shoulders and snog him right then and there before walking calmly out of the dormitory. Sirius just shrugs and follows after her. Once again, she’d gotten the last word.
Oh, Merlin, the drama!
As soon as Mel and Sirius were out of sight, everyone took a turn slapping Remus right upside the head. Well, except for me, I wasn’t really one for slapping anyone.
“Moony, you ass!” Potter, the only person I do enjoy slapping, yelled at his friend.
Ella moans, “Now we’re going to going to get an ear-full when we get back to the dormitory about what a self-righteous idiot you are! Not to mention this whole snogging business with Black, it just won’t end well!”
“I’m sorry, I’m sorry!” Remus tried to defend himself, “She had me backed into a corner!”
We all sighed and rolled our eyes.
There seems to be an awful large amount of eye-rolling going on lately.
I smiled as I walked down the hall. It’d been two days since the dance, and it was a beautiful day, the sun was shining, the birds were chirping, the flowers were blooming, and greasy black hair… Wait, what?
Severus Snape was standing right in front of me.
I need a vacation. Maybe to Hawaii. Or Morocco. Or I heard Fiji was nice this time of year.
“I’m going to Fiji,” I blurt out, then mentally slap myself, “Err, I mean, what are you doing here, Severus? You know I don’t want to talk to you.”
I hadn’t spoken to my ex-best friend since the incident by the lake earlier this year, when he called me a mud-blood.
“Why were you at the dance with James Potter?”
I laugh at him, stunned, “What does it matter to you?”
He frowns at my nonchalance, “I don’t think it’s very fair of you to try and make me jealous by going out with my worst enemy.”
My smile fades away. So that’s what he thought. Now I was angry, “Why would I care enough to try and make YOU jealous? Have I not made it clear enough that I no longer want anything to do with you?”
“Well I can never know for sure, you have to be catching crazy with those little ‘maraudettes’ you’ve been hanging ‘round with. It’s like you chose the three freakiest girls in the school to become friends with.”
Now I was fuming. Nobody insulted my friends.
“Well, if you have a problem with the Maraudettes, then you have a problem with me, because I’M a Maraudette!” I decided to add on one more word for effect, “Snivellus!”
I then proceeded to throw Potter’s underwear at him and stomp away.
Wow, immaturity can feel surprisingly good.
After the Snape incident, I really didn’t feel like going to my classes. Besides, it’s the last Monday of the school year, it’s not like we’re learning anything important. I walk to the infirmary instead, the cleanness of the place calms me down.
In there is Remus Lupin, looking absolutely horrid. He’s pale and sickly, with scratches all over his face. I’d seen this before, he got sick this way every month or so.
He looks up and sees me, and weakly says, “Lily. Hi.”
I look around, shocked that there are no other Marauders here. They usually never leave his side.
Remus must notice my looks, because he says, “McGonagall said that I was sick too often for my friends to be with me every time when it means missing classes.”
I nod, and sit down beside him. And, though I don’t know why, I start telling him everything about my life. I talk about my sister, my friends, my problems with Sev and with Potter. He just sits there, patiently listening. I’d probably be boring him if he had anything else to do. Finally, I finished with telling him about my parents.
“Usually, in abusive relationships, it’s the man who is the problem. But in my house, things are different. My mom doesn’t treat my dad right. All she does is yell at him, except for when she’s busy throwing stuff at him. It’s so wrong, but my dad is too nice to do anything but put up with it.”
Remus just nods. He knows what it’s like to have trouble with parents, his dad left when Remus was just a kid.
I look at the clock, class must have just ended. Which means…
In walk Potter, Black, and Pettigrew, all right on cue. They all stop short when they see me next to their friend, but I just shrug and walk out.
I’m not sure why I told Lupin all those things. But somehow I know that he understands, and that he won’t tell anyone any of it.
I sit in the Great Hall during dinner, poking my mashed potatoes with a spoon.
“Hey Lils, you alright?” Ella asks me.
I look up at her, my brain feeling dull and blank, “Did you ever realize that the plural of the word potato includes the word toe?”
She gives me an understanding look, “Potter?”
“Snape,” I spit the word out as if it were a bloody tooth.
She nods, not saying anything because she knows that I’ll do it first.
“This morning I was having such a nice day, but then the stupid hook-nosed prat had to come and make it all crap! Then I went and… Never mind.”
“What is it?” Ella raises her eyebrow, and I know that if I don’t tell her there will probably be no sleep for me ever again. Curse her stupid eyebrow!
….Did I just say that?
“Earth to Lily!” She snaps her fingers in front of my face, “What’d you do afterwards?”
“Well, it’s weird. I went to the hospital wing and, well, I talked to Remus Lupin.”
“Everything. I just rambled on and on. The poor guy, he was too sick to run away screaming.”
Ella laughs, “I’m sure he didn’t mind. Why didn’t you want to tell me?”
“Well, because now Remus knows more about me than you do.”
Ella frowns. It wasn’t her fault I’d never really opened up to her about my parents.
“Oh,” She says, obviously upset.
“Let me explain why?” I ask feebly.
She just nods.
“Well, when I met you on the Hogwarts Express on our first train ride here, it was the first time I’d felt like I fit in. At home, even with Sev around,” I barely choke out his name, “I was never where I belonged. And I felt like if I told you everything about my home-life, it would somehow follow me all the way here. I mean, obviously I don’t feel that way anymore, but I guess it just still feels wrong to tell you.”
Now she looks guilty, “Lily, if you’re talking about…” She looks around to make sure no one in the big room is listening, “Y’know, the abuse your mom gives him, I know. I’ve seen it.”
“What? You have? But my mom always acts like a freakin’ saint when we have company.”
Ella smiles at me, “Do you NOT remember how many times I’ve come over uninvited?”
My mouth turns to the shape of an “O” and then to a smile.
Ella always gets me.
A/N- So, my apologies for another slightly short chapter, but I have a lot planned for the next few, so don’t you worry my little kittens! Oh, and here’s Cassie! Imagine her hair more curly.