For most of the day, Hermione was entertained by the Marauders and Lily. They had escaped to Hogsmeade and grabbed handfuls of sweets and butterbeer. Lily was amazed at all of the things they had, while Hermione just sniggered and accepted with a smile. Everyone knew that she wouldn't talk of the future, so they bombarded her with questions about herself. Hermione was a little overwhelmed, but she answered every question with careful review. The questions were everything from her parentage to her friends in her day. She saw no harm in mentioning Harry, Ron or Ginny - they were in no way related, yet. She disguised Harry's last name so that they wouldn't get suspicious of his parentage. The fivesome seemed awestruck at the stories that Hermione told from her first years at Hogwarts.
"A troll in the girls lavatory?" Asked Lily, wide eyed. "And you three first years battled it and won?"
"Well, not so much me," Hermione smiled while she reminisced. "It was mainly Ron and Harry. They used a quite simple 'Wingardium Leviosa' charm and knocked it out."
"Oh my..." Lily gasped with her hand over her mouth. James smiled, envying the strength of Hermione. Sirius was on the edge of his seat, listening and taking in every word that Hermione said. Peter was fidgeting with his robes and trying not to look directly at Hermione; he was still afraid of her attacking him.
"Yes, well...That was nothing compared to the Basilisk in second year," Hermione said matter-of-factly. "That was bloody terrifying."
Shocked gasps followed that statement, and everyone was even more eager to hear the story. Lily looked as though she was going to fall out of her chair, and her eyes were going to pop out of her head. "Harry actually killed it with Godric Gryffindor's sword. Ron's wand, that was snapped in half, obliviated our Defense Against the Dark Arts teacher's memory. He is actually still insane to this....my day...weird.." She giggled.
"What else," Remus said interested to hear the adventures. He loved his adventures with James and Sirius, and he was wondering if she had any to top theirs.
"You three are right little problem starters, eh?" Sirius had a proud smile forming on his lips. He was becoming entranced with Hermione, not realizing that she could handle such danger.
"Not really. Problems tended to find us. Mainly because of Harry," Hermione kicked herself mentally for even bringing that up. Everyone stared at her with confused expressions. "Don't ask, you know I can't tell. Just assume that it's not good," she said while James was about to open his mouth. He closed his mouth instantly and sat back in the chair that he had subconsiously scooted out of. "Anyways...In third year we battled dementors, travelled in time, faced a werewolf...erm..." she darted her eyes away from Remus and looked to the ground. "And we saved an innocent man from going back to Azkaban." Her eyes travelled over to Sirius, meeting his in a staring contest. She could see that he was trying to read her mind and she was thankful for Occlumency lessons with Harry.
"Okay...That one might top some of ours," James said beaming.
Remus nodded in agreement and ventured the question that was burning everyone's mind. "How did third years conjure a Patronus Charm...If you were battling dementors?"
Hermione smiled fondly at the Professor, "Harry learned from a teacher that he had grown close to. His memories from the dementors were particularly horrible, and this professor helped him overcome it. I didn't learn the charm until my fifth year during a defense club meeting that Harry was president of."
"Seems like this Harry boy was quite the wizard," Lily said with envy.
"He is powerful," but she giggled and said, "Doesn't think much of books though."
"So...what about fourth year?" Peter finally spoke up.
"The Triwizard Tournament came to Hogwarts," she started but she was cut off.
"And Harry was chosen, wasn't he?" Asked James.
"Well, yes...but there were four champions. Someone put Harry's name into the Goblet," Hermione said gravely. "I won't say anymore on that because it's too close to everything in the future," a final tone dripped from her lips.
"Wow, you have been through a lot," Sirius said with a lopsided smile. He was secretly asking himself if Hermoine was really stable enough to handle everything that she had been through.
"I know people who have been through worse," she said instinctively looking at the door of the dorm.
"It's us," Remus guessed. "Isn't it?"
"No," Hermione lied quickly. "Just, people...other people." The five met their eyes and nodded in agreement that they would not pressure Hermione to tell anymore.
The laughter started again as Sirius and James did a skit of a battle with a troll, trying to mimic Hermione's story. Even Hermione couldn't help but relieve a belly bursting laugh. Hermione was starting to have a comfortable feeling, sitting with these people. She knew that the future for them would be aweful, but she couldn't help letting herself get attached. She felt at home. The longer she watched the charades in front of her, the more she wished that she could stay with them for longer; she knew that she would have loads to tell Harry about his parents and mentors.
Dumbledore came into their common room as they were getting ready to head to the Great Hall for dinner. "Seems that our new student is keeping you all occupied," he said with a twinkle in his blue eyes. "I am most pleased that you all are getting along. Hermione," he turned to face her, letting his eyes scan her brain, "I feel that it is wise to wait to introduce you to the school until breakfast tomorrow. There will be less questions if you are brought in during the morning than at night."
"Yes, sir," Hermione nodded. She was relieved that she didn't have to face a bunch of people on her first day here. "What should I do for dinner then, Headmaster."
Dumbledore answered quickly as if he had already heard this questions a second before it was asked. "I will recommend that James stays with you here to keep you company, and that the others go to eat. They can make a good excuse for James' absence." Dumbledore inclined his head to James, who nodded with enthusiasm. "Dinner, you all. Chop chop." He walked back out of the door, closing it gracefully behind him.
Lily, Remus, and Peter all left behind Dumbledore, disappointed that they had to stop their fun. Lily, though, was excited about getting to do rounds tonight; she needed to feel authoritive.
"Sirius, mate, are you going down to dinner?" James asked hopefully.
"No," he said with a slight sneer at James. He knew that James had been trying to get Hermione alone since yesterday night. "Besides, I had that horrible break up with Aneela Patil. I'll wait until that storm blows over." He smirked at James, who scolded him.
"Lovely," Hermione said rolling her eyes. "So...what's for dinner? I'm starving."
James stood from his chair, staring at Hermione. He was fascinated by her appitite. She wasn't like most girls, afraid to admit that she needed food to live. "What's your fancy?"
"Anything really," she thought outloud. "I haven't eaten in almost a week," she admitted.
"Why," asked Sirius, growing concerned.
"Boyfriend troubles," she smiled. She noticed that James was frowning and Sirius looked as though he had sad gleam in his eyes. She reassured them, though she wasn't sure why. "We broke up a week ago...He cheated on me."
"What a git," James muttered. "If there is one thing-"
"James," Sirius said with force, "It's not like we've never done it."
"Well, he was always telling me that he loved me. I'm sure you've never done that - making a girl fall in love, telling her the same, and then cheating on her because she has...erm...special plans for her...erm," she blushed fushia, "first time," she mumbled.
Dawning comprehension shown on James and Sirius' faces. They both nodded in agreement. "So," James started, "I'll get the food." He dashed from the room and headed toward the kitchenette located in the dorm.
Sirius was staring at Hermione, intently watching her every move. She fidgeted a lot. She hadn't been alone with Sirius and she was apprehensive about the situation. He raised one eyebrow and cocked his head to the side. "Why were you almost in tears when you were talking about me?"
"It..." She didn't know what to say. 'Damn,' she scolded herself. She thought that she had hidden that fairly well.
She was about to tell Sirius to mind his own business and stop asking questions, when James walked back into the room. He had three plates with piles of food and three glasses filled with pumpkin juice. Hermione dug into her food as soon as it was set down in front of her. The food was delicious, she had almost forgotten how wonderful the castle food was. She let a moan escape her throat as she bit into a particularly tastey piece of chicken.
"Thanks," she mumbled when her mouth was finally empty.
"Anytime," James smiled his enchanting smile and took a sip of pumpkin juice.
"Hermione," came a soft voice from the door. "Would you like to join me for rounds tonight?" Lily was standing in the door, eager for Hermione's answer.
"Oh, I would love to, Lily. Is it okay with the Headmaster? He said I should stay here."
"I asked. He said that it was a good idea." Lily said as she nodded vigorously.
After chatting with the boys for a while longer, Lily and Hermione walked from the dorm, arm in arm, to go find trouble. Hermione could feel it in her heart that if Lily and Hermione went to school at the same time, they would have been best friends. They giggled as they walked down the hallway, stopping to take turns to tell off snogging students that were hidden in corners.
Hermione looked over to Lily to tell her about a time that she had caught two Slytherins practically naked behind Boris the Bewildered, when she saw stunning emerald irises staring back at her. Lily, who had stopped walking, looked like she was going to burst. "I think I've figured it out," she said in a strange whisper.
"Figured what out?" Hermione was a little confused by this sudden statement.
"You go to school with our kids," Lily stated in a sort of questioning sense.
Hermione smiled warmly. Lily was partly right. "Not exactly, Lily. It's more...erm...I can't say," she said in a high pitched frustration. She stomped her foot to the ground. Above all else, she wanted to tell Lily to be careful; that Peter was a metaphorical rat and that he would be the reason that she dies. But, she did know better, and kept her mouth shut.
The girls continued walking, acting as though that scene didn't happen. Lily felt sympathy radiating from Hermione. She could feel that Hermione wanted to persist in her story, but knew better than to pressure her.
"Psst. Mione." Hermione heard a soft whisper in her ear as a gentle hand had tugged on her elbow. After countless times of Harry doing this to her under his invisibility cloak, she knew that it was James. "Come with me," James requested.
"Lily," Hermoine squeaked, "Would it be more prudent for us to split up? We could get things done faster and get back to the common room." Lily nodded in agreement, it was a great idea - they could get back to the boys quicker. Hermione continued, "I could do the library and you can do the Astronomy Tower."
Lily smiled and bounded to the Astronomy Tower. Hermoine turned to face James, though she didn't know if she was looking the right way. "James," she exclaimed in a harsh whisper. "What are you doing?"
"I want to spend some time with you, " he said taking her hand. "Away from everyone else."
"That's sweet," Hermione smiled, pulling her hand slowly from James. "Where to, Mr. Potter?"
"Call me James, please. I hate formalities."
"It was supposed to be cute."
"Coming from you? It was."
James draped the cloak to cover Hermione, excited that he got to stand so close to her. She smelled sweet, like strawberries and vanilla. He almost missed the wall in which he was looking for because he was basking in her extraordinary presence. He came to a halt in front of the wall that Hermione knew as the door to the Room of Requirement. He dragged Hermione back and forth in front of the wall three times when finally a brass doorknob appeard on it. James smiled at Hermione, who blushed and returned his grin.
She was amazed at his simplicity. The room that they entered was decorated exactly like the Head dorms; white walls and carpet, a roaring fire on the opposite wall from a single, green sofa. The only difference that Hermione could see was that there were no extra chairs around the fire. James grabbed Hermione's hand again and led her to sit on the fluffy sofa. When she sat down on one side of the couch, James threw himself down right next to her.
He looked at her, admiring the firelight dancing across her face, causing it to glow a beautiful golden color. He let his sapphire eyes gaze into Hermione's enthralling eyes that were beginning to lighten to the color of a fawn's fur. "You are beautiful, Mione."
Hermione felt a flush start at the base of her neck and work it's way quickly up to her cheeks. He was so charming - his twinkling azure eyes, strong jaw, chisled body that could be seen through his clothes. His smile was wide as he watched her eyes grope his features. She kicked herself mentally when she met his eyes. "Very flattering, James. But this cannot happen," though her stance was strong, her voice was weak. She fancied him. 'Uh-oh,' she thought, 'This isn't good.'
"Why not," he whispered desperately as he leaned closer to her. He took in her whole face; her worried expression was fighting with her strong confidence. A beauty that he found in her was scarce in most women; she had a natural attractiveness, instead of superficial.
"Because I don't belong---" but she stopped when James was an inch away from her lips. He gazed more intently at her, marveling at his lack of fear for what they were doing. When his eyes had moved their way from her eys to her lips and back up to her eyes, Hermione took in a slow breath. She didn't stop what happened next, though she knew that she should have. James' lips caught hers in a seductive, lingering kiss. He felt so comfortable to her and she obliged quickly as he moved his tongue over her lips, requesting enterance. Hermione moved her hands to cup the back of his neck; she was pulling him closer. While he was being tugged toward her, he slowly began to push her downward onto the couch. He was trying to be careful not to startle her into thinking.
Too late. Hermione came to her senses as she felt herself becoming captivated by his passion. She thought to herself, 'I'm snogging Harry's dad...soon to be dad...Ahhh!' She pulled away from the kiss, her lips were tender and swollen. Her eyes were darkended to the color of coffee. She watched another smile creep across James' face as his hand ruffled his hair.
"I'm sorry," Hermione said regretfully, looking away from James. He took his finger and put it under her chin to force her to look at him. He quirked an eyebrow, clearly not understanding what she was apologizing for. She explained with four hurtful words. "This shouldn't have happened."
Lily walked toward the Astronomy Tower, peering into corners and trying to catch wrong-doers. Disappointed that she hadn't caught any, she ascended the staircase leading to the tower. She walked slowly to the space that was open below the stars, shocked to see a dark figure leaning against the ramparts. Lily drew her wand and aimed it at the boy's back. Inside she was dancing the conga at getting a chance to tell someone off.
"What are you doing here," she said with impressive authority. "You are out of bounds after curfew."
"Lils! Pleasant surprise," turned the boy, revealing that he was, in fact, Remus. He offered her a friendly smile and gestured for her to join him in his star gazing.
"Remus, you gave me a fright," she said, lying and blushing at his outstretched hand.
"Don't lie," he said, knowing what was going on in her head. She was always trying to be girly around him so that he would protect her. "I know you were here in hopes of catching a Slytherin couple."
Lily smiled brightly, her green eyes absorbing the moonlight. "It's strange, isn't it?"
"Your need to piss off the Slytherins?"
She rolled her eyes and snickered, "That Hermione girl."
"Ah, yes," he sighed as he fisted his hands into his pockets. He turned his attention back to the stars. "She certainly seems emotional around us."
"Yes, especially Sirius. You don't suppose-"
"You know better than to ask, Lils."
"She almost called you Professor," Lily yelled as she tossed her arms up in frustration. The pain of not knowing her and her friends future when someone held all of that knowledge was overwhelming her. "She almost attacked Peter...Not that I blame her... And, did you see the way she looks at James? She felt more comfortable with him than she did with even the Headmaster!" Her chest was heaving as she stuck her finger out at Remus. "Please, tell me you are noticing all of this."
Remus took one quick step toward her and pulled her into a hug. "Things change, Lily. We cannot guess what all of this means. It is not for us to know yet," he whispered into her auburn hair. He was stroking her back while she was sobbing into his chest. "James loves you, you know?"
"I don't love him. We just started to become friends and I'm not going to ruin it," she sobbed. "Plus, he's an arrogant prat."
"I know that about him too, but I still love him," Remus said reassuringly.
"It's not going to happen Remus." Lily looked up to see his serious face. He looked truly concerned for her. He swept a piece of her straight ginger hair from her eyes, and let his thumb caress her cheek. He leaned in close to her face, his lips grazing her cheek. He whispered into her ear, "We'll know soon enough." The hairs on Lilys neck were standing on end as shivers ran down her spine. He pulled his mouth from her cheek and moved it gracefully to her full lips. He lingered there for only a moment before he retracted. He looked sweetly into her eyes before he turned away.
Lily stood with her hand to her tingling lips, watching her best friend walk away.
A/N - Thanks for sticking with me for this long!! Please please please let me know what you think!! Chap. 6 should be along soon!! ~Jessi
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