Chapter 6 : Deal
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Rabastan ignored Sita for the rest of the evening. He avoided her at dinner by speaking with Snape and Avery at the other end of the table. Sierra and Tobias were acting as though everything was normal, which further annoyed Sita. She finally snapped when they were finishing up their essays for Charms.
'He's acting like a child,' Sita declared, shoving her parchment into her bag.
Tobias shrugged and said nothing; Sierra raised her eyebrow. 'Is he? You started it by ignoring what happened last night and then entertaining Black,' she said coldly. Tobias shot Sita a curious look.
'That was different,’ Sita said, at which point Rabastan entered the common room.
'Can we talk now?' he asked. He looked tired and a little conflicted. Sita couldn't help but think about how much he looked like an overwhelmed teenage boy, which he was. It had never occurred to Sita that anything could faze Rabastan other than Quidditch. She nodded slowly and followed him out of the common room. Sita smiled softly at the sound of Tobias whispering urgently to Sierra as the stone wall shut.
'What do you want to talk about?' Sita asked automatically. Her hands slid into her robe pockets as she rocked back and forth on her heels. Rabastan watched her for a moment as she gazed around the hall.
'You,' he replied simply.
'What about me?'
'What's wrong with you?' Sita stayed silent. Was she meant to be falling madly in love with Rabastan just because he liked her? Was she not meant to be attracted to a blood traitor like Sirius Black, no matter how handsome he was? 'Answer me,' Rabastan demanded harshly.
'Why don't you tell me? I honestly have not got a clue,' Sita replied awkwardly as she stared at the stone floor. Rabastan sighed loudly and leaned his back against the wall, tilting his head back.
'I don't know what's wrong with you. Last night, you seemed to like me as much as I like you – yes, I do like you,' he added, seeing a faint look of disbelief in her eyes. 'And this morning you acted as though nothing had happened and claimed to be plotting against Potter only to turn around and entertain Black in Potions!' Rabastan exclaimed, his voice strained and fervent. Sita didn't reply and for a moment the two of them stood in silence.
'I wasn't entertaining Black on purpose,' she stated lowly when she finally responded. Rabastan rolled his eyes, frowning at the answer. 'Well, actually, I suppose I was,' Sita continued hastily. Rabastan made an irritated noise in the back of his throat. 'I figure that if I get on decent terms with Black, it will be easier to get at Potter, or at Black himself.'
Rabastan's frown vanished and his trademark sneer took its place. 'What, get close with one of them and then take out the other?'
'Something like that,' Sita admitted. She couldn't believe she'd thought of that so quickly and the best part was Rabastan seemed to be buying it. His cold eyes stared into the darkness; he appeared to be considering it. After a moment he nodded slowly, breaking into a small smirk.
'That could work, Massaro. Good idea.' Sita watched his eyes flicker over her unsurely before sighed loudly and slid down the wall. 'So, about us –‘
'Is flattering,' Sita said firmly as she took a seat next to him. 'But I don't think I want to risk our friendship.’ She could feel Rabastan watching her, and she wondered what his reaction would be now if she were to anger him. 'What if it didn't work out?'
'So what? We'd get over it, we're adults here,' Rabastan answered confidently. His hand rested on her arm and he began to run his fingers up and down the bare skin, making Sita shiver from his touch.
'I don't know, Rabastan...'
'How about this: if we win the first Quidditch match, we'll try it for a week. If it doesn't work, we'll go back to being friends.'
Sita studied him for a minute; he was being serious. It might work. She didn't like Rabastan that way, but if it would get him talking to her again, it was worth a try.
'Sure, we'll give it a go,' Sita agreed, giggling as Rabastan pulled her into a hug. They sat out there against the wall for a few more minutes before going back into the common room. Tobias frowned at Sita when she returned but it quickly faded when Rabastan sat next to her and happily started chatting with the three of them as if nothing had happened. Sierra cast Sita a curious look, but Sita waved her off. They could talk later.
'What happened?' Sierra demanded when they went up to the girl’s rooms.
Sita grinned. 'We made a deal. If we beat Ravenclaw I'll go with him for a week. If not… well, I think he just figures we'll win,' Sita laughed.
Sierra tilted her head a little. 'Are you not going to win?' she asked, a small note of worry in her voice.
'We're not not going to win on purpose,' Sita scowled, climbing into bed. 'I need the Cup this year, for my ego and possibly for my future.’
'Thank Merlin it's a Friday!' Rabastan drawled at breakfast the next morning, helping himself to some toast. Tobias nodded in agreement.
'What do you have first?' Sita asked once she swallowed. 'I've got Transfiguration.'
'Herbology,' Sierra answered, motioning at herself and Tobias. 'Rabastan has Care for Magical Creatures, I think.' Rabastan nodded.
'My two favourite subjects,' she said sarcastically, rolling her eyes. Tobias snorted into his food.
'Yeah, because Transfiguration is so much more fun,' he challenged.
Sita raised an eyebrow and smirked. 'Maybe it is.'
'Eh, no.' Tobias replied defiantly.
Sita left it and focused on finishing her cereal before the bell. When they got up from the table, Sita found herself alone behind the Gryffindors. They always seemed to be ahead of her, she thought.
'What do you think of Hufflepuff for a first match?' Sirius could be heard asking.
Sita thought she saw Potter shrug before replying. 'We'll beat them, no problem. Slughorn's an idiot, though; Slytherin versus Gryffindor always opens the season.' Sita noted a slight note of resentment in his voice; obviously, Captain Potter hadn't been prepared for the change.
'But won't beating them at the end of the year to win the Cup be more fun?' Lupin asked. Sita thought his voice sounded strained and tired. When she finally passed them she thought he looked quite ill.
Transfiguration proved more difficult than Sita had expected. Her class was one of two mixed NEWT Transfiguration classes; it contained mainly Hufflepuffs, and an equal amount of Ravenclaws and Slytherins. She had sat next to a Ravenclaw, and found herself being outperformed. Missing the double class had hurt her more than she had expected. McGonagall asked her to stay after class.
'Are you feeling better, Miss Massaro?' Professor McGonagall asked curtly. Sita nodded, wondering was this going to lead anywhere. 'You didn't do very well in today's exam. Why? You were out of the hospital wing on Tuesday, weren't you?'
'So why didn't you study?'
'Sierra forgot to mention we had an exam,' Sita lied.
McGonagall's eyebrow raised very slightly. She stared at Sita for a moment. 'Make sure to catch up. You may go.' Sita nodded and turned to leave. ‘Miss Massaro, next time you try to take out another Quidditch player on any team, I will personally make sure you do not play this season.'
Sita barely hid her smirk as she entered the hall.
That afternoon the four of them sat around in their own area of the common room, surrounded by parchment, quills and books. Rabastan was growing increasingly irritated with the first years and Tobias was snoring lightly in his chair. Sita peered over his shoulder and managed to swallow her giggle. 'He was working with 'Indormina Plants', according to this,' She explained when the others looked at her curiously. 'When mishandled they shoot venom. It works slowly, but in time the person hit with venom will fall into a dreamless sleep. I wonder if we should bring him to Pomfrey or not.'
Rabastan chuckled, but said nothing as he repositioned himself and continued copying Sita's Charms notes, as he had spent most of class in Dumbledore’s office for fighting with Diggory. Dumbledore was usually quick with dealing out punishment, but Rabastan had used a few of Rodolphus’ curses, so he had received a long, stern lecture about dangerous magic.
Sita's eyes fell back onto the History essay she'd been working on the night before. She was dreading having to finish it. Somehow Binns had managed to make the leprechaun uprising of 1916 boring. Sita did like the idea of Michael Collins paying his taxes with leprechaun gold, though.
'Do we have training?' Rabastan asked.
Sita pulled out her timetable, hoping they did since she didn't want to work on her essay. 'We have it in a half hour. I'm going to get my gloves,' Sita said. She ran into the room and rummaged for her gripped gloves. After a few minutes she returned to the common room and flung herself into a spare chair while she waited for Rabastan.
'Look out, Massaro!' yelled Baddock as he accidentally hit a Bludger in Sita's direction. She laughed as she spiralled out of the way. Rabastan sped past her, Quaffle in hand. Sita watched as Bletchley chased after him furiously, but Rabastan managed to score as Regulus barely missed.
'Hard luck, Black!' Davies called from behind Sita. They were playing two-on-one with Rabastan. She watched them for a little until she remembered she had to catch the Snitch. She grinned as she saw a gold sparkle near the ground and quickly forced the Nimbus into a dive. The wind whipped her hair behind her face as she leaned forward to speed up. Sita's hand reached out and gripped around the Snitch happily. She pulled up quickly and smirked at her team mates, who had forgotten their game.
'Nice dive, Massaro!' Regulus called from the goals. He looked like he had been expecting her to crash and burn as she had against Gryffindor last year when Potter used the Wronski Feint – she still hadn’t lived it down. Bletchley looked thrilled.
'Massaro, Potter officially has nothing on you! Fly like that in the final and the Cup is ours!' Sita blushed a little and descended, the Snitch still struggling in her grip.
Sita felt someone watching her in the changing room. Feeling a little uncomfortable, she carried her things into the bathroom and changed there, away from prying teenage eyes. She heard Rabastan start talking to Bletchley.
'Massaro has an idea to get rid of Potter,' he announced maliciously as Sita emerged. She stared at him for a moment before copping on.
'Oh right, Black.' Regulus glanced up upon hearing his name. He stared at the two nervously for a second thinking it had something to do with him. 'Er, yeah, I was thinking that if I got closer to Black – Sirius Black, I mean –' she said, looking at Regulus, 'I could slip Potter some bad potion or something.' Her voice trailed away a little as she finished. The team were glancing around at each other unsurely.
'We'll talk about it, Massaro,' Bletchley decided. He didn't sound too keen on the idea. Sita scowled at her stupidity as she left the room. They would never go for it; it involved a Slytherin becoming friendly with a blood traitor like Black. Sita sighed. She still couldn't see what the big deal was. What was so important about blood?
'Massaro! Wait up!' Rabastan called, catching up with her easily. 'The others aren't sure if they like the idea of you and Black, but I love it,' he grinned devilishly. 'I think you should go for it, and I'll be here to support you.' Sita smiled softly as he raised her hand to his lips and kissed it lightly. He kept his arm around her all the way back to the common room, grinning cockily at every teacher they passed. They passed Professor Dumbledore along the way, and he wished them a good night as he walked past, humming. 'Delusional man,' murmured Rabastan, making Sita snicker.
'Massaro and Lestrange, surely not!' came a horrified voice from down the hall that was followed by the sound of dry retching. Sita rolled her eyes. It was Potter and his friends, of course.
'Massaro, honestly, I thought you had some sort of taste, seeing as you were never interested in Prongs here, but obviously not,' Sirius laughed. James frowned at Pettigrew and Lupin, who were both chuckling, before laughing along with them.
Rabastan's lips thinned as he glared at Potter. 'How's the Mudblood?' James stopped laughing instantly and pulled out his wand.
'Take that back.' Sita noticed he had gone very white. Sirius suddenly appeared to realise what had been said and pulled out his own. Sita wondered if they all followed James blindly, or if they actually had their own opinions.
'James, Sirius,' Lupin warned, lowering their arms for them.
'Forty Points from Slytherin,' James said, remembering he was Head Boy. Sirius laughed out loud, as did Rabastan, which caught everyone by surprise.
'Whatever, Potter. We'll be watching when you fail against Hufflepuff,' Rabastan sneered, steering Sita around the four, who watched them leave. Sita moved her hand subtly to her robes. She had a feeling James was going to jinx them from behind. Why not? She'd done it to him.
'Furnunculus!' screamed James, but Sita was ready.
'Protego!' she yelled in time, managing to deflect the spell. Potter's spell flew back at them, and they all leaped aside as the flash of light flew past them down the hall. The six of them stood in silence, waiting and listening.
Sita could barely stifle her giggles as Filch came hobbling into view. 'NO MAGIC IN THE CORRIDORS!' he screamed. The six students sprinted off toward their common rooms before Filch could pick out any of them. Both Rabastan and Sita fell into the Slytherin common room laughing hysterically. Sierra raised her eyes and watched them stumble over to their seats. Tobias was still asleep. When they calmed down, Rabastan repeated what had happened with an amused drawl. Sita didn't think she'd ever seen him so relaxed. After a few minutes of chatting, the three quieted down and started finishing their homework. The common room was quieter now, and Rabastan was able to focus. Sita sighed as she continued her History essay. It was going to be a long year.
A/N - My apologies, this was a bit of a filler chapter but I there were bits here that I needed to post =)
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