Chapter 7 : Chapter Seven. Camilla.
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He pulled me up from the couch and grinned to himself as we trotted through the crowd, tens of girls eying me like I was the biggest bitch in the land—not too far off ladies. What was it about Sirius that sent the females into frenzy? His good looks, his charm, his debonair persona that seemed to only fall apart whenever Remus or Peter or James was talking to him? But was that the guy he really was? That was my goal as of late—I was going to decode the infamous Black.
He pulled me closer to him as we exited the common room, and I smiled to myself, earning an interested glance from him. I winked and he grinned, tugging me even closer. I had a small feeling that perhaps tonight was the night I would finally win. After like a week of just talking to the guy, I would finally win the stupid dare that I’d proposed.
About the dare—I’d done that with a bit of haste. I mean, I was hurt from Ken Kroger (arrogant bitch) breaking up with me. Okay, that’s a bit of an understatement. See, if Ken hadn’t broken up with me, out of the blue (and I mean completely), then this whole thing probably wouldn’t be happening. The four boys were actually random. I know Lily thinks that they weren’t, and Mute thinks that I have a thing for Black, but the truth is, they were just the four boys that were unavailable and promiscuous enough—well Black and Potter, at least. It just seemed to fit. Four with Four—but now that’s backfiring.
See, last night, Elsie decided we should copy the four of the guys and try the reports. I protested at first, not seeing the relevance, as this is a competition, but I gave in eventually and we huddled together on Mute’s bed, curtains closed, silencing charm in effect.
“So, I think I’m going to approach James tomorrow, but I don’t know how…any ideas?” Lily began. I proposed she just go over and kiss him, but she refused, blushing like mad. I mean, what’s the use in blushing about simply snogging a guy if your ultimate objective is to seduce him? Isn’t that silly, I mean, seriously?
We contributed a bit about that, but eventually the topic became kind of boring, and I knew all the other girls, not excluding myself, were thinking about their own guys and their own problems. Elsie finally caved and piped up.
“Peter likes Haley.”
Ouch. Talk about a low blow—I mean, I can understand if he liked someone else maybe, but someone who looked practically identical to Elsie? Ouch.
“Convince him that it’s you he wants, not Haley,” I told her.
“And how do you think I should do that?” Her tone was that of a non-believer. Like I could possibly be wrong when it came to guys? And Peter? He was even easier than the usual bloke.
“Do something she doesn’t dare to do. Be adventurous, be timid, be slutty, I don’t care, just be what she is, but more!” I told her.
How the hell was I supposed to know that the idiot would take my words to mean that she should go and take off her top to Peter. I mean, it captured his interest (probably made him wet himself) and all, but I would never stoop so low to get Peter freaking Pettigrew.
Sirius blew a shallow bit of air into my ear, making me giggle—planned, of course. Everything about this entire endeavor was planned. Down to a science, as I’ve previously said. And that’s all that really matters. In order to win, you have to play the game, correct? And to play, you must have strategy, right? To have strategy, you have to fucking plan!
I wrapped my arms around his neck and swayed a bit, making him stop walking and just stand with me, in the middle of the fifth floor corridor. We were standing in front of the portrait of Romeo and Juliet, the perfect spot; the perfect moment. I started to lean in. He grinned, and leaned in. This is the time when the plan is finally set into motion and executed perfectly.
This is where my plan failed. Because as his face drew closer to mine, all I could think about was Ken Kroger and how much I missed him. I felt a jab at my heart and a fall in my stomach, like all my hopes shattered and decided to tumble down. I turned away, a tear escaping from my eye and I suddenly remembered the time that Ken lead me out for a midnight stroll. He’d taken the advice of one of his mates and brought me down to the lake. The moon was shining on the water, giving a perfect setting. That’s the similarity between Ken Kroger and me, Camilla. We plan, and we execute, and we set others in motion as well. I hadn’t seen him much, and was thrilled, vulnerable only with him, enough to be thrilled.
He walked us over to a small oak tree, standing against the trunk and pulling me to him. I smiled at him, and he smiled at me. I wrapped my arms around him neck, only to have him say, “Millie, things aren’t working out.”
I took a very deep breathe, my head falling onto Sirius’s chest. He stiffened, obviously panicking. He had been planning for a quick snog with me, obviously. I took another breath, the humiliation seeping into me like water to a sponge.
“I’m sorry, Sirius,” I quickly assessed the situation, deciding that this vulnerability could work for me later. Make him see me as a damsel in distress—emotion distress is distress nonetheless. “It’s just…I don’t know why, but I just feel so safe with you, and that scares me.”
“Camilla, darling,” He stretched the syllables on darling in order to make me laugh—he succeeded, and I’m not entirely sure if I planned laughing or not. My defenses are down, and therefore I’m not prepared right now for this. “Honestly, I’m not the nicest guy or anything, but you really don’t have to be scared of being with me.”
“I’m just not used to people being so nice to me…” I trailed off, leaving him hanging there, waiting for me to continue.
“Well, get used to it, Camilla Hollisander, because I’m going to be around…a lot.” He grinned and I beamed up at him, the tears still kind of in my eyes. I blinked hard and they splashed onto my cheek. He took his hand and wiped them off, smiling at me.
As his thumb wiped away the last tear, he let his hand rest on my cheek. I leaned into his touch, and closed my eyes. I practically could feel him staring at me. I waited expectantly.
“I really want to…” He whispered, but stopped himself. I felt a strain on his voice. Why did he sound so strange? What else was he going to say?
I opened my eyes, arching my eyebrows, and opening my mouth a little. He half-smiled and I wanted to just yell, “Get it over with!”
I didn’t, and he took another minute to just stare at my face.
“I just feel like I’m taking advantage of you, and that isn’t what I…do. You know?” NO!!!
“Uhm…it’s okay?” It sounded too earnest. I look like such a slag right now!
“No, we should save this for another time. There will be another time,” He said it more to himself than to me, but I could tell he was pained to let it stop here. Was he planning me? Like I had planned for him? Was he using the “Semi-hard-to-get-despite-technically-already-being-got-leave-em-hanging” method?
I smiled, and we walked back into the common room, hand in hand.
By the time we returned, most of the buzz had worn down, students passed out on couches, tables, the floor, everywhere. Firewhiskey bottles lined most surfaces, and there was a stench in the air, that I purposefully blocked from inhaling; I didn’t want to associate it with this moment.
I turned to Sirius when we got to the top of the stairs and kissed him on the cheek, like I always did when we said hello or goodbye. He grinned at me, and let go of my hand. I looked over the little balcony that looked over the common room, and right in my line of vision I saw that arrogant bitch, Ken Kroger. No bitterness in my tone at all. No sarcasm in my tone at all. Wow, I suck at lying to myself.
I blinked away the image of him, passed out just below with his tongue practically hanging out of his mouth and onto his cheek, his legs sprawled over the top of the biggest arm chair. Sirius cleared his throat, and I smiled at him, turning to leave.
“Erm…bye Camilla,” He sounded weak and tired, strained. Strained seemed like a pretty fitting word for almost everything tonight. I turned around again and smiled once more, muttering a goodbye and opening the door to the stairs that would lead me to the seventh year dorm, and to my comfortable four poster bed.
I closed the door behind me, leaning against it, and taking a deep breath. I heard a crash from outside and a faint grunt. Was Sirius slamming doors because of me? That could only mean one thing: he wanted me.
This was definitely going to be interesting. I just had to make sure to keep the plan in motion next time. I couldn’t lose focus like I had tonight. This was unacceptable and inexcusable. I couldn’t let my guard down with Sirius, and I couldn’t let Ken Freaking Kroger get in my head anymore.
That part of my life is over, I told myself as I crawled into bed after changing. I need to move on. That was the point of this stupid dare.
My mind, in its pre-sleep mode, scrambled and produced the image that was of the three girls and me, talking about the dare.
“So…the dare is simple. Seduce the guy that is assigned to you. You must complete the ‘deed’ in order to receive bragging rights, and when you do, well the rest is up to you. You can dump their asses, stay with em, or you can pretend this whole thing never happened.”
My gaze had shifted to Lily with that last line, seeing her doubtful countenance. Mute bit her lip and shifted in her seat, clearing her throat and just listening. Elsie had done nothing, stared at me like I was fascinating, waiting to drink in more.
I turned to Mute. “So Chickadee, whatcha think?”
“For the last time, Camilla,” She snarled. I smirked. “That is not my name! The process didn’t even go through!”
You might be confused at this point. See, when Mute was about four, she was being teased at preschool because of all the Mute jokes. She begged her mom to let her change her name to Jennifer, Jessica, Ashley, anything normal. Her mother agreed on the name change, but decided she wouldn’t let her child choose, as they never get to choose when it first happens when they are born, so why let Mute choose now? Her mother, Crazy Mrs. Connelly, decided on Chickadee. What a wonderful name?! Mute, being mortified, agreed to keep her name.
“Think you can handle it?” I smirked over at her.
Mute raised her chin and said with a bit of flare, “I think I’m going to win.”
Now, a week later, I can see just how close she was to winning. Well played, Chickadee, well played.
Well, tomorrow’s always another day… And with that thought, I drifted off to sleep.
I only added in the bit about Mute's name, because so many people were asking about it. I wanted to let you guys know about why she hasn't changed it, and why she got it in the first place--her mother is eccentric. I hope you enjoyed this chapter. I wanted to let you know Camilla a bit better, and also answer some questions some people needed answered, like the specifics of the dare. Thanks so much to everyone who has been reading and reviewing! Please continue to do so!
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