Chapter 2 : There's Friendly and Then There's Friendlier
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I got into the common room and sat on the couch, looking into the fire. I stared at the flames as they licked the wood beneath it and devoured the ashes. A hand on my shoulder jerked me from my thoughts and I looked up. Fred was standing there, a sad puppy dog look playing across his face.
“I’m sorry.” He said softly, coming and sitting beside me. “It was just… it was… I don’t know what it was. I shouldn’t have said those things. And I didn’t mean them. I’m just really sorry.”
A nervous look flashed through his face and I moved closer to him, snuggling into his arms. He pulled me close to him and kissed the top of my head.
“It’s ok.” I whispered.
The next day, I awoke in Fred’s arms. No sex. That was the agreement. But we did share a bed. I curled up against his warm, bare chest and he sighed contentedly. A hand rubbed the length of my back and my hands moved over the ripples of his toned body. Being on the Quidditch team really worked for him. I kissed his chest and he kissed my forehead. We stayed like that, held together by only our arms. His warm breath cascaded across my skin. My eyes stayed shut as he rubbed from my back, to my arms. His hand cupped my chin and brought my lips to his. And then something strange happened. Draco Malfoy flashed through my mind and I imagined his lips on mine instead of Fred’s… and I didn’t pull away.
Fred and I walked, his arms around me as we strolled through the Quidditch field. His hands suddenly covered my eyes and I giggled.
“What are you doing?” I asked.
“You’ll see.” he whispered.
He led me to a shadowed place. His spontaneous acts were becoming more frequent and they became more incredible every time. His hands left my eyes and I looked around. We were under the stands, but there was a small blanket. On the blanket a bouquet of red roses laid next to a box of chocolates and a small box, wrapped in deep purple paper. I turned to him with a smile plastered to my face. He smiled and led me to the set, sitting down. I sat down next to him, kissing him full on the lips in gratitude. We pulled apart and he grabbed a picnic basket I hadn’t even noticed.
“You’re too good for me.” I told him, resting my head on his shoulder.
He smiled and pulled out a container of strawberries and another filled with a white powder. He opened them both and dipped a strawberry in the white powder, which I now recognized as powdered sugar. I smiled as he held it to my lips. I bit down on the end and he pulled it away. I grabbed a strawberry and dipped it in the sugar, holding it up for him to nibble. He bit onto it and I smiled as he did so. He kissed me, then, holding a hand to the back of my neck and the sweet taste of strawberries erupted in my mouth.
We lied together after eating our fill and interlaced our fingers. I stared through the cracks of the stands and could see dusk filling the air. But I didn’t care. For once, I didn’t think about getting in trouble or getting caught. It was just then and there, me and Fred.
He brought my hand to his lips and placed a tender kiss to my knuckles. I rolled on my side and draped myself over his body. He wrapped his arms around me and I stayed warm in his arms. A drop of water fell onto my cheek, spilling down onto Fred’s folded arm.
“Tears.” He whispered.
“What?” I asked.
“They’re Angel’s tears.” He told me, playing with a strand of my hair. “Watching over us. Everyone we know that died, no matter how long ago, cries while watching over us. The rain tells us they still care, that they’re still watching to make sure we’re ok.”
A swelling in my heart took over my body and I held on tighter to him then ever. His arms warmed me and I thought of her, watching over me at this very moment. I felt a tear escape from my eyes and his thumb brushed it away instantly. He sat up, pulling me with him. I buried my head in the crook of his neck and felt the silent sobs shake my body. He rubbed my back and held me close.
“She died, didn’t she?” he asked softly.
I nodded and clutched to his shirt. He stroked my hair and kissed my head.
“It’s ok,” he said. “It’s ok.”
“She was only eight years old,” I whispered. “How can someone get cancer at eight years old? What did she ever do?”
“I know.” He said, holding me tight. “It’s not right.”
“I just wished I could have stopped it, take it away.” I whispered, pulling back and sitting on my knees. “I just feel so responsible, like, I could have at least been a better sister than I was. I just don’t want her to hate me.”
“She could never hate you.” He whispered, wiping away the tears that fell from my eyes. “You loved her, so much. Everyone could tell.”
I hugged him again, not wanting to let go. Was he right?
I woke up in Fred’s arms for the fifth time that week. My eyes instantly flew to the new ring on my finger, gold with a peridot stone in the middle – my birthstone. We were still under the stands, I realized, and under just the one, thin blanket. I hugged him tighter and he instantly pulled me close to him, keeping me with him and only him.
I couldn’t believe what I was seeing, but I saw it. She was back with him. I cursed to myself and watched as she cuddled up next to him under the stands. He told her something and she giggled. That should’ve been me. Me.
I had to make a plan.
“So, then you get a perfect life.” Fred finished.
I giggled. “You have high expectations.”
“Maybe.” He said, tracing my face with a finger. “Maybe not.”
I took hold of his hand and brought his fingertip to my lips, kissing it gently. I kissed them one by one, finishing with his pinky and moving to his palm. He kissed my forehead gently, then moved to the middle of my brows. Then he kissed each eyelid and the tip of my nose. He kissed each cheek, finally ending with my lips, moving slowly and gently over mine. His tongue gently caressed my bottom lip and I opened my mouth to allow entrance. His tongue found the inside of my mouth, exploring and tasting. Our tongues touched and brushed, grooming each other’s mouths. His hands crept to my waist and my arms wrapped around his neck. We repositioned and he was on top of me again. His lips strayed from my lips to my jaw line, following the pronounced line. My head tilted back slightly and he started trailing my neck with kisses. He followed the path of my collarbone and I found my hands tangled in his hair. What was I doing? I was leading him on.
“Fred,” I whispered heavily.
“I know,” he told me, breathing hard onto my chest.
He moved back to my lips and we rolled to our sides. His arm draped over my waist and my hand rested in the crook of his neck. He kissed my forehead and I kissed his nose. I buried my face in his chest like a little kid and he held me there, safe in his arms. But something felt wrong.
I walked to Potions, a huge smile stuck stupid to my face. I opened the dungeon door, taking my seat next to Ginny and smiling at her. She gave me an all-knowing grin and I blushed.
“Fred, Fred, Fred…” she softly tsk-tsked.
I giggled softly and sighed, paying attention now to Snape.
“Today we will be working with a muggle sickness known as cancer.”
My face drained of all color.
“Thousands of people are suffering right now, not having any cure.”
My eyes burned with the sudden presence of salty water.
“Adults and children alike are suffering and dying from this illness.”
I saw her figure run past to a far corner, sinking to the floor. I knew it was her. No girl ever ran crying plainly down these halls. Not at Hogwarts. I walked slowly to where she was. She had slid down one of the walls hidden by the staircases and was sobbing quietly in her arms, her legs up, her arms wrapped into a square atop her knees. I put a tentative hand on her shoulder and she looked up within an instant. She looked back down and her body shook with another silent sob. I knelt to the floor, my hand rubbing her upper arm.
“Is it Weasly again?” I asked.
She shook her head.
She shook her head again.
She suddenly wrapped her arms around my neck and cried onto my shoulder, her
tears wetting my shirt. But I didn’t care. I pulled her closer and she didn’t pull back.
“I can’t go back.” She whispered. “I can’t go back.”
Somehow, I knew she meant class, so I took her hand and helped her to her feet. My feet started walking on their own accord, but I didn’t care. I knew where we were going. She followed obediently, wiping her tears with her free hand.
We made it to a blank wall and she stared at me curiously. I smiled to myself and walked three times in front of the wall, thinking that I needed a place to help her, help Crystal. A door appeared and her eyes widened slightly. I opened it and led her in, greeted by a large room. There was a couch, a fireplace, and a folded up blanket on the arm of the couch.
“It’s the Room of Requirements.” I told her, closing the door behind me.
She sat on the couch, looking around. I sat beside her and she cast me only a quick glance before exploring the walls with her beautiful blue eyes. She finally settled on the fire, staring intently into the flames. A tear rolled down her beautiful face and I wiped it away, her softness blending with the roughness of my thumb. She looked at me again, staring into my eyes.
“Cancer,” she said finally, looking down at her hands.
“The muggle sickness?” I asked.
She nodded. “My sister died from it over the summer. She was eight years old. It just spread through her body, finally taking over.”
The struggle and shortness of her words told me that she was fighting the tears back and holding in the sobs.
“I’m sorry,” I said finally. “I had no idea…”
The pause between us was thick with worry and sadness.
“I just couldn’t handle it.” She told me, picking at the couch.
I nodded, staring intently at her beautiful lips as they moved to form her words. They
moved again, forming more words.
“I didn’t know what to do.” she whispered.
Her eyes watered slightly, pooling her sapphire eyes with salty tears. Through her tears, the normal gray specks were washed away, leaving only a deep pool of blue. A tear escaped and made its path down her fair cheek. I found my hand reaching for it and cupping her chin, brushing the tear away with my thumb. Her eyes turned on me and I gave her a small smile. She smiled too and moved closer. Our eyes met and held tight to each other as I felt my body move closer. I was leaning, leaning for those full, soft lips. And then they met, her lips beneath mine… and she didn’t pull away.
Draco’s lips moved over mine and I took in his taste, breathed in his air. His hand was still on my face and my hands moved to his shoulders. His kiss was soft and gentle, lacking nothing. I could feel my mind start to loose control while my body took over. All my worries melted away with his kiss, everything, everyone. Cancer, death, my sister, Ginny, Harry, Ron, Hermione, George, Fred… Oh God, Fred. I wanted to pull away and could feel my mind start to gain over some control but he moved to the top of me. We fit together like puzzle pieces, him and me.
Fred’s voice rang through my head and my mind gained a little more control. Draco’s lips moved to my neck, sucking slightly on the skin and caressing it with his lips. All the things Fred had done for me came flooding to my mind and it gained a sliver more of control. Draco’s lips were going further, going to my chest. I let out a soft moan. My body took over again. Something. I had to think of something. This was wrong. This was so wrong. My ring glinted in the light of the flames and my mind took control once more. Draco’s hands were now under my shirt, moving over my stomach and gliding everywhere. His mouth sucked on my chest, slightly nibbling.
“Draco, stop.” I said in a breathy whisper.
“Draco,” I whispered.
He didn’t even look up.
“Draco.” I said louder, my chest heaving.
He looked up at me, fire playing through his eyes. I sat myself up, running a shaky hand through my hair. What was I doing?
“I’m sorry,” he said finally. My heart swelled. He was sorry. He knew it was wrong too, and he accepted that we made a mistake.
“It’s not your fault.” I told him. “I… we…”
What was I supposed to say?
“I should go.” I told him in a whisper, straightening my clothes and standing up. “Ginny’s probably worried about me.”
He nodded and I went to the door, looking back only once.
Fred wrapped an arm around me that night as we sat on his bed in the boy’s dormitories. I kissed his cheek, guilt heavy on my mind. He hooked a finger under my chin and our lips met. He held the side of my face and I clutched into his neck. His tongue asked permission for entrance once again and I opened my mouth obediently. He tasted me and I tasted him in return. His body moved on top of mine, his lips now moving to my neck. I tangled my hands in his hair and he moved farther down. Draco’s face flickered through my mind but I pushed it away. Fred pushed his hands into my shirt slowly, tentatively. When I didn’t stop him, he moved his hands over my body, exploring. I owed him this much. After what happened between me and Draco, guilt kept me rooted. Fred didn’t deserve me. But he deserved to use me, like I had used him. His fingers undid the button on my pants and his lips moved slower, begging for me to let him continue.
Oh God, oh God, oh God… what was I going to do? I knew what I should do, what I should preserve. But after what I did, he deserved an apology, even if it was a secret one. Oh my God, oh my God… I was frozen. I didn’t want to do this. I shouldn’t do this. I was saving myself for my true love. Did I love Fred? I thought I did… ohmygod
I lifted his shirt over his head and he looked down at me, shocked but smiling. I smiled tentatively and he kissed me again while inching my pants further down towards my ankles. He kissed my chest, my neck, my lips. My pants were off. He nibbled on my earlobe and I giggled softly. He kissed down the side of my neck until he found his way back to my mouth. He lifted my shirt over my head.
Oh God, oh God…
His pants were off too. How long ago had he taken them off? His mouth kissed down my neck, to my chest, to my stomach.
Oh my God… Oh God…
He unclasped my bra, lifting it from me, leaving me feeling slightly uncomfortable and awkward.
His kissed my stomach, resting his lips on my navel. He inched my underwear down.
His boxers hit the floor.
I wanted to take it all back. All of it. Even Draco. If I hadn’t felt so guilty, I wouldn’t have done what I did last night. I lied in Fred’s naked arms and he held our bodies close. His heat radiated to me, even though it was a cold morning. I wanted to cry, I wanted to scream, I wanted to take a steaming shower and wash it all away. He was so sweet… but was he the one? Really, truly the one? Who knew? His breath flowed over my bare skin and I slowly untangled myself from his grasp. I pulled his shirt over my head and pulled on my underwear. I gathered my clothes quickly and tip-toed out of the dormitories.
I made it to the fourth-year girl’s dormitories, dropping my clothes to the foot of my bed and hurrying to the showers. There was one left. I closed the curtain and started to take his shirt off when I heard my name.
“I’m here,” I told them, pulling the curtain back.
“Oh, there you are.” The girl said. “Fred’s looking for you.”
“Tell him I’m taking a shower and I’ll be down in a bit.”
“Ok,” she said, taking a good look at me. Her eyes widened. “You guys… you guys… you two did it!”
“Ssshh!” I hissed.
She giggled. “Oh my God! And you’re wearing his shirt! Oh my God!”
“Keep it quiet!” I whispered.
She giggled. “Whatever you say…”
Once the door closed, I looked in the mirror. Did I really look like I had just had sex? My hair was disheveled and slightly tangled. Maybe I did. I don’t know. I closed the curtain and peeled off his shirt. I slid off my underwear and stepped into the shower, embracing the burning water. I had to get clean.
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