Chapter Thirty-Four: I found those pictures I took
He stormed into his own dormitory, conjuring pillows out of thin air as he muttered under his breath. The rest of the boys came into the room shortly after that. Arianna was too afraid to ask anything when Sirius was in a rage like this. She was almost glad that she hadn’t seen his bad moods when he wasn’t speaking to her. She knew that he had been furious about the Snape thing.
“I’m sorry Ari.” He said finally, lowering his wand. “I never realized that you and I having a disagreement would have such an effect on how the rest of the school treated you.”
She hesitated. “It’s not just because of that Sirius. It’s more because of Severus. They hate him too, and think I’m crazy for even talking to him. The reason they’ve been so mean to me lately is because of him, not just you. They think I’m insane for being with him instead of Remus, who everyone loves.”
“Well, at least they got that part right.” He muttered. Arianna glared at him and he burst out laughing. “Take a joke, Ari. I mean seriously, Remus is five times the man that Snape will ever be. I don’t get you, but I’m not going to put my big nose in it anymore.” He said, smiling at her. She glanced over at Remus, who was trying to look busy straightening the pile of pillows.
“Hey James, will you help me enlarge my bed. Ari is sleeping in here from now on.” Sirius announced.
James immediately stepped forward but Arianna tugged on Sirius’s sleeve. “Don’t you think that is a little inappropriate?” she said in a low voice. “I mean, I realize that you probably don’t realize this, but I’m a girl, and this is an all boys dormitory.”
“Ari, when will you realize that I don’t give a flying fuck about the rules?” Sirius demanded, pushing her hand off his sleeve. “You’re sleeping here and that’s the end of the discussion.”
She crossed her arms over her chest. “And what if I say no?” She asked back, setting her mouth in a stubborn line that Sirius was very familiar with.
“You want to sleep on a rock mattress? Fine, we’ll turn your half of the bed into one.” He said, looking at James and laughing. “C’mon Ari, quit being stubborn. I’m trying to help you out here. Those girls are downright beastly and the farther that you get away from them the better.”
“You don’t seem to think those girls are so beastly when they are throwing themselves at you.” Arianna reminded. “Normally, you seem to find them pretty appealing.”
“Yeah, well seeing the way that they treated you made them lose any appeal that they had.” He muttered. “No one messes with my sister.”
She sighed as she watched the boys rearrange the room to accompany the bigger bed, now fit for two people. She sat down on the edge of the bed and watched Sirius, trying not to smile. “And how long will I be sleeping in here for?” She questioned.
“Until we get this sorted out.” Sirius said back vaguely. “Now go get ready for bed, and don’t talk to any of those girls. I mean it, Ari. We’re going to deal with them. You just stay out of it.”
“It’s my problem. Shouldn’t I be the one dealing with it?” She asked back, edging for the door. “I could very well tell you to leave them alone and let me deal with it.”
“That you could.” He agreed. “There’s no promise that I would listen to you, however.” She saw that James was biting his lip in an attempt not to laugh. Arianna and Sirius stared each other down for another minute and then all of them burst into laughter.
“Alright, alright. I’m going to get ready for bed. I’ll be back in a bit.” She told them, heading out the door.
It was a bit awkward to go back in the room and change into her night clothes in front of the girls who her brother had just yelled at. They all avoided eye contact with her except for her former friend Lisa McNally, who shuffled her way over to her. “Hey Arianna, I’m sorry that there was a misunderstanding. I mean, it was just a prank. We were trying to make you laugh because we’ve all seen how down you’ve been lately. I mean, I would be sad too if Remus broke up with me.”
Arianna cricked her neck around to stare at Lisa in surprise. “What?” She asked.
“Well, you know,” Lisa said, smiling a little. “That’s why you’ve been hanging out with that Snape guy isn’t it? Because Remus dumped you and Sirius is mad at you. I mean, we were just trying to cheer you up. Your brother is the king of pranks; we thought that he of all people would find this funny.”
Arianna rolled her eyes. “Yeah, well he didn’t.” She said shortly, trying to curb her famous Black temper from getting the best of her. She scooped her blanket off her bed and headed for the door.
“Where are you going?” Lisa asked curiously.
“Well, it’s a funny story actually.” Arianna began. “It’s really uncomfortable to sleep on the floor. So I figured that I would find a big strong boy with a nice warm bed to curl up in for the night.”
She walked away from Lisa, knowing that more rumors were just going to spread now. That Black family temper, it just kept getting her into trouble.
She tried not to let the stares of the people in the common room affect her as she walked back across the steps and up into the boys dormitory. She knocked lightly on the door and stepped into the boys room.
“Damn.” James muttered as she came in, handing a Knut to Sirius, who grinned happily at her.
“Oh,” Arianna said confused, “Do you want me to leave?” She asked, looking around at the boys. She had thought they wanted her in here, but James did not look excited to see her back in here.
“No, no, Ari, you’re staying. Let’s just say that James didn’t believe that you were coming back. He thought that you were going to be stubborn and sleep in your room anyway after you promised me that you were coming back. I, of course, bet on you coming back.” Sirius beamed. “Trust me James, I know my sister.”
She rolled her eyes. “You boys are idiots, seriously.” She muttered, climbing up into Sirius’ bed and tucking her bare feet under her. “If anyone should get that Knut, it should be me.”
Remus smiled at her as he climbed into his own bed on the other side of Sirius. Whether on purpose or not, the side of the bed that Sirius had designated for Arianna was the side that was closest to Remus. She was now less than five feet away from Remus and would be quite close to him as they slept. She would wake up and be able to see him first thing. Even though she and Remus had amended their relationship awhile ago, it was still going to slightly awkward to sleep in the same room as him.
James and Sirius bantered good naturedly with each other as they got ready for bed, pushing each other to be first in the bathroom. Arianna smiled contentedly, realizing that she was sort of glad that Sirius had taken her away from the other room. She felt safe here, relaxed finally. Maybe Sirius was right, maybe he could actually make everything okay for her. Now, if she could just get Severus on the same page. Why couldn’t he just agree to meet with Sirius so they could put this whole mess behind them and her life could start to be a little more normal? If the two boys who were the center of her life could just agree to get along, for her sake if nothing else, things might actually start making sense.
“You okay, Ari?” Remus asked quietly, as to not alert Sirius’ attention. “You’re quiet over there.
“Yeah, I’m great.” She said truthfully. “I’m just thinking.”
“About what?” He asked, still careful to keep his voice down.
“This whole crazy situation. It’s strange, if things are okay with Severus, then thing with me and Sirius are not okay. If things are okay with me and Sirius, me and Severus aren’t okay. It’s just all very odd and frustrating. Sometimes I wonder if my life is ever going to work out.” She sighed.
“You and Snape aren’t okay?” Remus asked, trying to ask it casually, and not trying to let her see how this excited him.
“Well, Sirius wanted to meet him and patch things up, but I guess Severus isn’t ready to mend fences yet. It’s frustrating, he knows how miserable I’ve been without Sirius’ approval and now that Sirius is being the bigger man and trying to put all this behind them, Severus won’t participate. He says he’s not ready to forgive Sirius yet.” She admitted, as always finding it extremely easy to divulge everything to Remus.
Remus was quiet for a minute. “You have to remember Arianna, that Sirius and Snape hated each other long before you were ever in the picture. They’ve done things to each other that you can’t even imagine. It’s going to take time for the two of them to reach any kind of peace.”
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