Chapter 9 : Chapter Nine. Lily.
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But even now, one day after the corridor incident, James was now avoiding me it seemed. I walked into the common room and he would go up to his dorm. He never tried to be my partner in any of our classes, like he usually did. I found myself scoping the locations, actually trying to find him. And that was good, because I needed to win this blasted dare, and so far Mute was doing a bang up job of beating me. And rubbing it our faces.
They are everywhere! Mute and Remus whispers are floating around. They take walks everywhere, holding hands, leaning in to whisper instead of talking normally, because they are so close. Damn them.
Part of me, the friend to this girl, is very happy for her. Because in spite of the fact that I know it’s all for the dare, it really seems like she’s happy with Remus. Like they’ve really, truly found something in each other. And that’s somewhat relieving and really sweet, because Mute hasn’t had a boyfriend in forever, and I don’t think I’ve ever seen Remus with a girl.
I walked into Muggle Studies (Camilla was constantly badgering me about how I don’t really have to take this class, but it’s still quite interesting) and sat down in my usual seat. I took out a roll of parchment to use as lecture notes, and also a quill. I felt strangely worried, so I took out another just in case, along with my ink pot. Before I opened my ink, I shook it lightly, in order to make sure it is still fresh and ready to be used—I’m a bit meticulous in that sense.
Remus and James walked into the classroom, talking about something that would happen in two days or so. I tried my very best not to feel hurt when Remus sat down in his usual seat behind me, and James sat in the chair to my left. Not at my table, but at the one next to mine, leaving a spot open for someone. I could tell he was saving the space, because he pushed up his legs and covered the chair with them, still talking to Remus but not about the same thing. I wrote my name on my parchment, trying to look busy, so that I wouldn’t have to deal with his snooty attitude.
A few minutes passed, class would begin in three or four more. Molly Salvatore walked into the classroom and beamed as James moved his legs in order for her to sit down. I snapped my head in blind reaction, completely and totally shocked. James paid my sudden snap of neck no attention, grinning at Molly and putting an arm around her shoulder briefly. Remus looked just as shocked as I was, his eyes flashing from me to the scene to my left.
I paid absolutely no attention in class, simply glancing to my left every few minutes and thinking about how I could win him back. I had no idea how to. On my parchment for lecture notes, which usually held about three feet of notes per class, there was nothing except the doodle that I’d made just under where I’d written my name. I didn’t know what we’d covered. I doubt that it would matter later, considering I was already a muggle-born. That fact did sometimes make the classes tedious, but I still found it interesting.
It was time to leave, and as soon as Professor Holland dismissed the class, I gathered my belongings and raced out of the classroom. I dodged a ton of students, knocking a fifth year to the floor. I flew by, shouting my apology behind my shoulder.
When I said the password to the fat lady, I started to run in before she’d opened the portrait.
“Hey! You watch it next time, girlie!” She shouted behind me when she paused and then opened the portrait. The fire wasn’t lit in the common room, which I barely noticed as I dashed past the blurry room. I bounded up the stairs and pushed open the door, screaming. Okay, not screaming…
“I quit!” I shouted. Elsie wasn’t there, obviously, because she was probably in Herbology. Mute was sitting on her bed, writing something that I couldn’t see, and Camilla was lying on her side, flipping through a Witch Weekly and popping her Droobles Best Blowing Gum, blue bubbles floating above her head. I grimaced when I realized just how long those were going to take to pop.
“What are you talking about,” Camilla asked with a bored tone, although her eyes were suddenly jumping. Mute stopped writing, pushing her quill atop her parchment and stacking it on her night table, right beside the vial of potion I'd given to her the day before.
“The dare, challenge, experiment, whatever you want to call it,” I seethed. “I’m not participating anymore! So have fun trying to gain an STI by yourselves! I am done with it all!”
They stood at me, eyes wide. Mute pursed her lips and glanced back and forth between Camilla and me. Finally she said, “Are you serious?”
I was tempted to make the pun, but I digressed, and gushed, “Do I look serious?”
“Oh goodness, Lily, what happened?” She sounded concerned, but I doubted that it was geniuine. I mean this meant one less competitor. And Elsie, with Peter barely even looking at her now (his eyes must be burning), it was doubtful that she was still in the game. I’m no seer, but Mute had every good omen in winning.
“Look, he’s moved on! I had him, so completely enthralled with…me, and I just passed it up to let him go to that bimbo Molly. Leave it to me to fail the easiest task in the universe!” I bit my lip and sank onto my bed, the comfortable comforter not enough to comfort my despair. Why was I so dejected about losing…Potter?
Just because we’d shared a drunken kiss meant so little, and I wasn’t even sure if I was completely secure with myself enough to go through with this dare. I mean the other girls were all very beautiful, each in their own way, and I knew I have nice features, but I was still insecure. I mean, I’m only human, and this is a huge step. I never, in my wildest dreams, pictured that I’d be competing to win some whore competition.
I never shared my thoughts with Camilla or Elsie or Mute. I didn’t want to insult them by suggesting what we were doing was way too sleazy for who we are as people. But I was pretty sure if they all weren’t, at least Mute was having the same concerns and doubts that I was.
“Lily…” Camilla sighed, and closed her magazine, popping her gum loudly. “You can’t quit. You signed the contract. I know it seems impossible, but I mean you have way better chances than Elsie, and I’m pretty sure that even though you think James has moved on, he hasn’t. You can’t get over someone that quickly.”
She sounded like she was speaking from experience. I knew she was, but I was still shocked—this was the first time she had referenced, directly or indirectly, the breakup that had occurred between Ken Kroger and her. I felt my heart go out to who she had been before.
I knew in my gut that this whole transformation that she went through was the result of the terrible ordeal that stupid Ken caused. He ripped out her heart and danced with Kendra Rollins atop it. Now she’s just the shell of who she used to be, forcing us to call her Camilla like we did when we were in third year, before everyone called her Millie. I think it hurts her too much, because of Ken and how he was the one who started the nickname in the first place.
“Look, all I know is that he didn’t even look at me once the entire lesson, flirting and touching Molly the whole hour,” I mumbled her name, the taste of it annoying in my mouth.
“Lily, I don’t think you really know how to attract someone.” Camilla told me quickly, as if for once she was taking my feelings into account and as if saying it faster would make it be less hurtful.
“I know a lot about attracting someone, especially Potter.” I said defiantly.
“I will!” I shouted and marched out of the dormitory, strutting towards the library with a glint in my eye. People actually jumped out of my way.
“Geeze, Evans, really?” I heard someone shout behind me, but I didn’t turn to see. It wasn’t James and it wasn’t a professor—who cares?
I walked into the library, scanning rows upon rows of books, pulling out any that seemed like they would help. Madame Aphrodite’s True Guide to Love, How to Hook a Wizard, Laws of Attraction According to William Shakespeare’s Nephew’s Son’s Wife.
It wasn’t until I had scattered all my books on the table and opened the first one, hearing the spine creak a bit, that I realized that bitch had used reverse psychology on me.
“Something wrong, Lily Evans?” James Potter. Oh-My-Merlin!
“Uh…I…uh,” I unrolled my parchment as fast as I could, trying to cover my books. How embarrassing!
“What’s that?” He moved the cover, but I flew out of my seat and covered the book with…myself. He gave me a side glance, muttering how odd this was. “Well, er…I’ll see you later?”
He walked around the huge wooden bookshelf, and out of sight. I sighed and laughed a little to myself, uncovering the books and sitting myself back into the uncomfortable wooden chairs.
There was a flash of dark wool and I cursed to myself. James Potter was a dirty rotten little liar, who hid behind bookshelves and jumped out when the covering on top of really embarrassing books was removed in order to humiliate his former fancy.
“Well, well, well, Evans, who are you trying to impress?” His tone was alike to someone who was mocking, but I thought I detected a little jealousy in his voice. His dark, low, beautiful voice…which I am no longer focusing on!
“I uh…er…uh…” I stuttered for a moment. “Remus!”
I said the first name that came to mind, and I immediately regretted it. How could I be so stupid? Mute is going to hate me!
“Re-Remus?” Surprised. He was surprised. Not hurt? Not jealous? Where did the jealousy go?!
“Uh, yeah. He’s really nice, and I know that he and Mute might have…a thing, but I really kind of, maybe, like him. And I uh….well, I wanted to…” I trailed off, putting hand on my forehead and shielding my blushing cheeks and humiliation.
“Oh…” He gave a soft chuckle, taking a seat across from me.
“Well…yeah,” I shrugged, still embarrassed.
“Wow. I really, can honestly say that I didn’t expect that,” He mumbled. I nodded, stacking my books in a neat pile in the corner of the wooden table. “But…I feel attached to you, and I think that I can help you.”
“I can help you. I think we should take a step towards being closer, being friends. And if to do that, I need to help you date on of my best mates—that sounds really bad—but I’ll do it. I’d do a lot for you, Lily,” He breathed.
I was sure the expression on my face was alike to a deer in the headlights, but I just sat there, not making any motion to change it.
“You want to help me date Remus?” I nearly cried at how pathetic and devastating the chances of my winning now were becoming.
“Great!” I said, the smile melting off my face within seconds. Just great…
Wow, thank you to everyone who has continued to review! I really, truly appreciate it! This chapter was intended to be longer, but it's going to have to do. James seemed pretty dull this chapter, I know, but I promise as time goes on, everyone will be more developed and interesting. Please review!
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