MANDATORY AUTHOR'S NOTE. IF YOU ARE A RETURNING READER AND YOU DON'T READ THIS, NOTHING WILL MAKE SENSE.
I wrote it at the beginning of Chapter 14 in an edit, but for those of you who didn't see that (and I'm guessing most of you didn't) I'll copy and paste it here.
I did something that changes the direction the story was going in starting four chapters ago. I realize it's incredibly unprofessional of me to take something out that was (pretty much) a driving part of this story (as of four chapters ago.) Actually, I decided not to take it out completely, but just change it. My argument, though, is that I am NOT professional and I'm on this site to LEARN how to write, ahem, decently. Thus, if I figure that something wasn't working, I fix it. So...okay, I'll tell you what I did.
Violet is NOT DATING ANTHONY. I fixed it so that she meets him and they become friends, but DO NOT DATE. She has been SINGLE since breaking up with Michael in Chapter Eleven. I then took all future references of that out of the story or altered them so they fit in more of a friendship-y way.
Now, I'll tell you why. Part of the reason I haven't updated in so long is that I've been so stumped on how to start the next chapter. I had rewritten several times and nothing was working. I thought about it and realized that introducing Anthony as a love interest was only messing up the rest of my plotline. Basically, I looked at my outline on where I want the story to go, and realized that with Anthony as Violet's boyfriend, things in the future would just put Violet in a really sticky situation that would not be easily maneuverable. Also, I KNOW I'm not the only one who thought this, but Anthony was an incredibly weak character and they went from Point A to Point B wayyy too quickly. His character was never really developed so even though he was a main character, he had very little screen time.
In conclusion, I decided that it was in everyone's best interest to make him more of a minor character. I've realized how much space I've taken up here and if you want me to elaborate or ask me questions or yell at me and try to change my mind, visit my Meet the Author Page and pose your questions there. Or leave a review. Whichever works for you. Okay, continue on reading.
Image by .bewithyou at TDA
Chapter Fifteen: Hogwarts is Going Crazy.
When I got back to Hogwarts, the school was buzzing. Yes, literally buzzing. I had happened to be in the last carriage, so Lily, Clara, and myself were among the last to step into the Entrance Hall. We looked around and noticed that all the students who had gathered to greet the new arrivals were whispering, all whispering to their friends. You know that feeling where everyone seems to have their own little group or niche in the school. Clique, I believe is the accurate word. Well, just about every single student seemed to be segregated into the appropriate batch. I noticed that many of the kids who had stayed at Hogwarts over the Christmas Holiday were talking at nearly a hundred miles an hour to inform those who had gone on vacation of something
that had happened. Not only that, but people were looking everywhere. The students kept turning around or peering over their friend’s shoulder to look at someone
. This was the real live process of rumour spreading. We were actually witnessing it with our own eyes.
“What in God’s name is going on?” Clara hissed to me.
Me, being the paranoid type, automatically came to the conclusion that somehow everyone had found out about me, the mask, The Plan—everything. I touched my face, just to reassure myself that the mask was, indeed, on and firmly attached. No, it couldn’t be me. For one thing, no one was really looking over in our direction. Well, not enough for it to be noticeably uncomfortable, at least.
“I have no idea,” I muttered back to Clara. “Maybe Dumbledore went and died.”
“You say that like he had a choice in the matter,” Lily murmured, having overheard my comment. “Maybe Stella Anders is pregnant.”
“No, no,” whispered Clara. “That would be horrid for the kid. With Black as the father and all.”
“Nah, they broke up,” I put in.
It was at that point I saw Jane standing with a group of Hufflepuff girls, all peering over at a group of Ravenclaws nearby. I caught Jane’s eye and waved, giving her a questioning glance.
She made her way over to where we were standing. “Hey.”
“Hey. What’s going on?” I asked.
“Yeah,” added Lily. “Why is everyone so...gossip-y?”
Jane gritted her teeth nervously. “The Valentine’s Day Dance was just announced.”
Clara curled up her lip in disgust and whirled on Lily. “You really
Lily crossed her arms defensively. “Yes, we did. James and I thought it would be a good way to get the students to interact with each other.”
“Well aren’t you Miss I-Have-School-Spirit-And-Want-Others-To-Have-It-Too.”
“Anyway,” interjected Jane. “Boys are gearing up by eyeballing the girls they’re going to ask. And the girls are busy praying to God that the boys they’re
eyeballing asks them.”
“Hence the whispers,” I muttered. “We wouldn’t be teenagers if we never shared with anyone who’d listen what was going through our minds about the opposite sex.”
“But dances are so...formal
,” moaned Clara. “Couldn’t it have been a school picnic or something?”
“In the arctic temperatures outside?” snapped Lily. “Be my guest and try to enjoy some tea and biscuits out there.”
“Has anyone been asked yet?” I asked Jane.
“Well...it was just announced this morning, so it’s basically just speculation. Obviously the couples who’re already going out will go together. Not much else. Well, Will Stelle, Gryffindor Seeker, is going with Melanie Allens.”
Clara laughed. “The Ravenclaw Seeker? That’s so fitting.”
We said goodbye to Jane and began our trek towards Gryffindor Tower.
“A Valentine’s Day Dance?” Clara continued to skoff. “As in Cupid and hearts and pink and sprinkles?”
“Yes,” agreed Lily. “It will be very lovey-dovey.”
“Did you consider all the people who wouldn’t be able to acquire dates?” I asked. “Lovey-dovey will only make them feel worse, won’t it?”
Lily paused briefly and crinkled her eyebrows. “You’re right. But really, any dance would do that. It doesn’t matter the theme much. Besides, only fourth years and up will be able to go, so that might cut down on a little bit of it.”
“What about the rest of the kids?”
“They can hope the Head Boy and Girl next year will be more lenient.”
We reached the portrait hole. “Woggle,” said Lily.
“How do you know the password already?”
“I’m Head Girl. I know everything.”
We found our Dormitory empty, for everyone had probably gone down to the Great Hall for dinner.
“So,” asked Clara, throwing herself onto her bed. “Can I take Andy to the dance with me?”
“You’re still seeing that Hogsmeade guy?” inquired Lily.
Clara nodded. “I try to go out and see him once a week or so.”
Lily closed her eyes. “I’m going to pretend I didn’t hear that.”
“Go ahead,” taunted Clara. “Turn me in. I dare you.”
“I should, but I won’t.”
“So, can I bring him?”
“I think so,” said Lily. “There might be some permit you’ll need to get from Dumbledore or something—just to make sure he’s not Lord Voldemort in disguise or something.”
“That would suck,” I said.
“That’s a bit of an understatement, don’t you think?” asked Lily.
I turned my head toward the red head. “Who are you
wanting to go with?”
She paused, and then said, “I don’t think I’ll go with anyone. I’ll be too busy making sure it all goes smoothly.”
We were silent and then Clara groaned. “Oh God. You want to go with Potter, don’t you?”
Lily turned slightly pink. “Of course not! Where on earth did you get that idea?”
“You touched your Head Girl badge when you said it. And you weren’t exactly avoiding him at your sister’s wedding. I saw you chatting him up.”
“That’s completely insane,” cried Lily. “I wouldn’t date him—,”
“—if he was the last boy on earth?” I offered.
“—if you had to choose between him and a werewolf?” asked Clara. “Sing a new tune, why don’t you?”
Lily collapsed on her bed. “Who’s side are you on?”
I sat down on the trunk at the edge of the bed. “I think that if you like him, you might as well ask him.”
My comment seemed to be the breaking point for her because Lily rolled over and I heard a muffled scream go into her pillow that sounded a bit like, “But it’s James bloody Potter.”
Man, had I known Lily was going through so much internal turmoil over the Holiday, I would have kept a good ten feet away from her at all times.
Clara seemed to be thinking the same thing, for she said, “You’ve been thinking about this a lot, haven’t you?”
“Ever since Violet decided to tell me he wasn’t joking about liking me,” she said into the pillow.
Clara glanced at me. “And you know this because?”
“He’s made it blatantly obvious,” I said. “I honestly think we just refused to see it.”
Clara frowned, obviously not liking the idea of her best friend with James Potter, but she finally came to her conclusion. “Just ask him, Lily. It’s probably destiny, anyway. If you like him, I’ll,” she swallowed, “try to like him.”
The red headed girl just groaned.
I suppressed a laugh and turned to Clara. “I could be wrong, but I think she’s suffering from wounded pride.”
“Probably. She and Potter are more alike then we give them credit for.”
I went over and laid down beside Lily. “Boys are so stupid,” she muttered.
She finally sat up. “Okay, say I do ask him. There’s too much history between us for me to just go up and say, ‘Hey James. Go to the Valentine’s Day Dance with me!’”
Clara jumped from her bed to Lily’s to join us. “Then say, ‘I think I want to go to the dance with you.’”
“No,” Lily said. “He’ll say no.”
“He won’t,” I said. “It’s James Potter.”
“He doesn’t act like he did before. He’s not interested anymore,” Lily muttered.
Clara raised one eyebrow. “He wouldn’t have gone to your sister’s wedding if he wasn’t interested.”
Lily groaned. “God. I wish I wasn’t a girl.”
“Boys don’t have it much easier,” Clara offered.
“Yes they do.”
“Girls don’t have to deal with morning...happiness.”
That made us all start laughing, and for a long time, we couldn’t really stop.
“I think,” said Lily finally, gasping for air. “I’ll ask him...tomorrow at breakfast. If he says no...it’ll be incredibly awkward and we won’t be able to work together anymore....but I’d hate myself if I didn’t.”
“Please,” I said. “It won’t be that bad.”
The red haired girl turned to look at me. “Enough about me. What about you
? Who will the oh-so-famous Viola Rinelle go with?”
I wasn’t going to pretend I hadn’t been thinking about that. To be honest, I had no idea. As soon as I voiced my answer, Clara piped up. “I think it’s time we start to fry the Big Fish with this plan.”
“The Big Fish?”
“I think it’s time we try to take out the patriarch of dating.” Clara’s eyes were shining. “You think you can do it?”
I stared at her. “To be completely honest, I don’t really know what you’re asking me to do.”
“If you are asked to the Valentine’s Day Dance by Sirius Black, I say that you accept.”
“Do you think that’s a good idea?” I asked.
“I think it’s necessary.”
It was then that I came to the conclusion that Sirius Black would never not
be in my life while I was attending Hogwarts. I had already walked around the castle with him at nighttime, been kissed by him, and talked to him as my real self. No matter how hard I tried, I could not escape him. Maybe it was my fate to ensnare him and teach him the lesson this whole Plan was based around. Sure, I could teach it to every other male at Hogwarts, but it was Black, Sirius Black, Mister Casanova, who took the cake. Without him, all of our efforts would be wasted.
What would my peers think of me? Could I ever be respected again by dating who everyone knew to be a womanizer? Then again, what if...what if I was exaggerating. I thought he was a womanizer because he had dated my best friend and then dumped her for a slag. This same scenario did not hold true for everyone else. Maybe he wasn’t a womanizer and I was just biased. Or maybe not. It was too early to tell. I would have to see where things took me.
I looked at my two friends. “Alright then. I guess we’ll see what happens.”
And that, inadvertently, spelled my doom.
At breakfast, everyone was nervous. There was still a good three weeks until the dance, yet the whole school acted as if it was tomorrow. Boys were paranoid that all the girls would be gone and the girls grew more frantic with every hour that didn’t consist of them getting an offer, for fear no one liked them. I knew this because I heard the frazzled fragments of conversation on my way to the Great Hall. Hogwarts was freaking out.
And yet, this was nothing compared to what Lily was feeling. She looked like she hadn’t gotten a wink of sleep the night before. Her face was pale, thus emphasizing her green eyes to the point where they almost looked unreal.
When we walked into the Great Hall together she grabbed my arm tightly. “Oh, my God. He’s here
“I highly doubt he went anywhere else
, Lily, Dear. He’s a growing boy who needs his breakfast.”
It was just the two of us. Clara had gone up to the Owlery before classes started to write a letter to Andy. Boyfriend and girlfriend stuff, I guess.
“Easy for you to talk. People are already asking you.”
“Just one person.” It was true that I had one offer on my way to breakfast from a Ravenclaw sixth year. I had tried to be polite while saying no.
“Listen, Lily. We’re going to go to the table and start eating breakfast, okay?”
I led her over to an emptier part of the bench and we sat down. I ladled some poached eggs onto her plate. “Eat.” I poured her a goblet full of pumpkin juice. “Drink.”
The bench on the other side of the table was quickly occupied. I looked up and saw Remus Lupin sitting there. “Hey Lily!” he began. “Did you understand Slughorn’s homework over the holiday? I was doing okay but I got stumped on question thirteen, part L.”
Lily seemed glad for the distraction. “Here. Let me look for mine.” She began to dig into her bag for her Potions homework. She pulled it out. “I think you have to talk about why the affects of the bol—.” She trailed off as the man of the hour ran over to sit by Lupin.
James Potter swallowed whatever food was in his mouth. “Oh good! Is that the Potions? I didn’t understand any
Lily, if possible, turned even whiter. She pushed her paper forward. “Here, you guys can look at it.”
The two boys’ jaws dropped. “Is Lily Evans letting us...copy
?” gasped James.
I couldn’t feel sorrier for my friend. She was struggling so hard with herself. I think she was trying to decide whether to throttle him or kiss him.
“So James,” I started. “You notice what an uproar your and Lily’s decision to host a Valentine’s Day Dance has caused around the castle?”
Lily kicked me under the table.
James laughed. “It’s hilarious, isn’t it? It’s like someone let loose a hoard of headless chickens or something who are squawking about how the world is ending.”
Lily forced a grin. “I never thought things would get this crazy.”
As if on cue, a loud shriek of ‘What do you mean he said no
!’ issued from the Hufflepuff table, followed by the sound of breaking china as a large, blonde girl lobbed her breakfast plate at a Gryffindor boy’s head.
“I think it’s entertaining,” replied James, a grin stretched from ear to ear. “People go through so much trouble trying to ask someone to the dance.”
You’re telling me.
“They just have to realize it’s not that hard. It’s really simple.”
“Exactly,” said Lily. “It’s like if I was, hypothetically, going to ask you, James. I’d just say, ‘Hey James! I think I want to go to the dance with you.’”
I faked a coughing fit over my roll to hide the fact I was almost wetting my pants with laughter.
Lupin, who seemed to be catching on a little faster then his mate, stared at me with a Does she mean what I think she means?
look on his face. My coughing/laughter seemed to confirm it for him.
James remained ignorant of all this. He was nodding. “Yeah! It’s like if I was going to hypothetically accept I would say, ‘Yes Lily, I will go with you.’ I don’t have to start crying and throwing a fit. That’s just so...immature.”
Lily just stared at him. In fact, we all stared at him.
He stared back.
Here it comes.
“Was that real?” he asked. “Was that a sincere dance offer, not just an example?”
Lily nodded, trying to avert her gaze.
Everyone was quiet for a moment, and then James slumped backwards off his seat onto the floor.
Oh for God’s sake...
“Did he faint
?” Lily cried.
“Looks like it,” muttered Lupin. “God, I hope you didn’t kill him.”
I rolled my eyes and pushed my pumpkin juice towards Lupin. “Here. Dump this on him.”
He did as he was told and pretty soon James was squirming around on the floor and trying to sit up. “What happened?” he asked groggily. His eyes fell on Lily and he nearly toppled over again. “Did that just happen?”
“Yeah,” my red-headed friend replied.
“You really just asked me to the Valentine’s Day Dance.”
“If you want to go.”
“If I want to—of course
I want to go.”
“Then sure, we can go together.”
We were all silent for a moment. Then James stood up and swayed a little on his feet.
Then he yelled.
And jumped up on the table and pumped his fists in the air.
And shrugged out of his robes and ripped his shirt off.
And did a little wiggly dance.
“HEY YOU GUYS!” he roared out to the rest of the dining students. I saw Sirius and Pettigrew staring at him wide-eyed. James was waving his hands around in the air until everyone was watching him. “I’M GOING TO THE VALENTINE’S DAY DANCE WITH LILY EVANS!”
Then a roar of approval from the rest of the student body.
I looked at Lupin. “Didn’t he just
say that all this behavior was immature?”
Lupin smirked. “James is the king
Once in Transfiguration I explained the whole breakfast ordeal to Clara behind me.
“I cannot believe I missed that,” she cried.
“Believe it, Sista’,” came a voice from the front of the room. “You missed the essence of epicness itself this morning. Sirius Black and Remus Lupin made their way up to their seats beside us. Across the room I saw James and Pettigrew ambling toward their seats.
Clara scowled. “Shut up, Black.”
Surprisingly, he did as he was told and faced the front, where McGonagall was going over her notes for the lesson. After about half a second of doing this he turned toward me. “So I met Violet over the Winter Holiday.”
I had to stop my mouth from dropping open. Instead I just quirked an eyebrow. “How is that you’ve met her, but I haven’t?”
“I got lucky and had an ‘in.’”
“Well, that’s cool.”
“She’s really nice.”
“Of course she would be. She’s friends with Clara and Lily.”
“Normally, I would disagree, but Lily just asked James to the dance, so she’s cool now. As for Clara...” He shot a disgusted look over his shoulder at the blonde girl behind us and stuck his tongue out at her. “My judgements are reserved.”
“You’re a loon.”
“Honestly,” he lowered his voice. “I think she’s really pleasant. I just remembered when we talked about her when you and I were locked out of Gryffindor Tower and I wanted to tell you what I had found out.”
“I’m glad you like her, Sirius—,”
“Woah, woah, woah. Did you talk to her?”
“Why do you ask that?”
“You called me by my first name and I specifically told her to tell you to do that if she ever talked to you.”
I shrugged, thinking fast. “She sent me an owl introducing herself and explaining what happened at the wedding.”
Sirius looked pleased with himself. He turned around again. “Clara, you’re cool now. You make good friends.”
She rolled her eyes. “Glad to hear it, Black.”
He turned back around, trying to look suave. “Did you have a good holiday, Viola?”
“It was good,” I replied. “Not too busy, so it was a great chance to relax and get caught up on school.” I paused. “How about you?”
“I spent it with my mates. We wreaked havoc on the civilians. Tons of fun.”
“Did you really?”
“Nothing too bad. There’s this muggle trick where you attach a muggle five pound note to fishing wire and leave it on the ground for someone to pick up...and then when someone tries to, you jerk it away. That was entertaining for about half an hour.”
“Crazy in love with life.”
I laughed, unwillingly. “Okay.”
We stopped talking as Professor McGonagall started addressing the class.
She was interrupted as James Potter stood up in the back of the classroom. “Guess what, Professor?”
“Sit down, Potter.”
He swirled his hips in a circle. “Lily asked me to the daaaance. Lily asked me to the daaaance.”
“He’s never going to get over it, is he?” I muttered.
Black grinned and leaned back in his seat. “James has style, Viola. James has style.”
A/N: Yes, I do realize that it has been five months since I last updated. I am incredibly sorry. I really have no excuse. Basically, life got ahead of me and I found no time to write. That, on top of the whole Anthony crisis I was going through, deterred me from wanting to start the next chapter. Yesterday, I edited the four chapters in which Violet and Anthony were technically dating. Today, I sat in front of my computer and wrote out this chapter. Yes, pretty much the fastest I've ever done for Deception. That's how badly I wanted to update and how easy it was for me to get back into the swing of things once I got Anthony out of the way.
I realize that this chapter is slightly (or maybe a lot) over-exaggerated in terms of the dance and the fact everyone's freaking out. But I thought it would be fun to do it this way.
You know, I almost didn't come back to finish this. I almost listed it as abandoned about two weeks ago, but then I didn't. I really would like to see this completed. Well, we'll see.
As for the next chapter, I really can't say when it will be up. It won't be five months. I promise you that.
Now, I've answered all my reviews up to this point. So please don't hesitate to leave me a new one. (God, I hope I still have readers at this point.) Please let me know what you think. The good and the bad.
Thanks for sticking with me.