Chapter 5 : Detour
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Chapter Five: Detour
“Mellie, I think that’s the third time we’ve passed that hedge,” Sirius says, sounding worried. I roll my eyes at him. We have not passed that hedge three times, this is the first time we’ve passed it. I think. I hope.
“Honestly, I know how to find my way home from a shop three streets away,” I reply, irritated that he’s questioning my judgment, (Actually, he has every right to be questioning my judgment when it comes to getting to and from places, considering I got lost at school the second-to-last day before term ended, and I’ve been going there since I was fourteen. In my defense, they did repaint, and that was very confusing.). “And all the hedges look the same!”
“That one’s different!” he protests, and I let out a frustrated ‘why are you being so irritating’ sigh. “That one’s got a big hole in it shaped like an owl.”
Who sees a random hole and says it looks like an owl?! I’d say the boy’s just lost his mind, but it’s been lost for a while now. As proven by how he was raving on in the tree house about giant cats and such.
I turn around to get a good look at the hedge-with-the-owl-hole.
He’s right. It does look just like an owl. Freaky.
“This is the first time we’ve passed it,” I say, reassuring myself more than him, and continue walking. He shakes his head but follows me. He’s quite for about two seconds, and then,
“That tree looks familiar!”
I sigh, stop and glance at the tree he’s pointing at. Oh bugger. It does look familiar.
“It’s a pine tree,” I say, “all pine trees look familiar.” I start walking again and Sirius heaves a huge sigh before following me.
“They do not,” he mutters. “That pine tree has a pinecone on it that looks like a broom.” I ignore his ramblings and turn the corner. I stop, staring at the house across from me.
Oh crap. Crappity crap crap. I KNOW I’ve seen that house before. That crazy dog lady named Wilhelmina or something lives there! And it’s nowhere near my house! We are lost!
“Hey, I know I’ve seen – ” Sirius starts.
“Don’t say it!” I interrupt him. He smirks, knowing that I know he’s right. Prat. He’s so fit when he smirks. Super prat. I turn in the other direction, the direction I hope home is in. I’ve had quite enough Sirius for one day. In fact, I think I’ve had enough Sirius today for a whole month.
The super prat follows me, still smirking.
We had a nice chat when we had just left the shop, while we were eating our chocolate, but ever since I took one wrong turn and we went down the same street twice, he’s been bugging me. And now, we’re more lost than ever and he’s irritating me more than ever.
I turn another random corner that looks vaguely familiar (I’m hoping it’s familiar because it’s near my house, not because I’ve already passed it two times today.) and grin when I see the sign at the end of the lane that simply has an arrow and reads “Green Park”.
It’s the sign for the park! Huzzah! I know my way home from the park (due to my parents dumping me there all the time when I was little)! Hallelujah!
“Mellie, just admit you’re lost,” the super prat says. I give him the evil-eye. He pretends to not be alarmed by it and just smirks at me in that superior fashion of his. It wouldn’t tick me off nearly as much as it does except he looks so darn fit when he does it!
“I am most definitely not lost,” I reply, this time speaking the truth. He raises an eyebrow at this. I raise my eyebrows right back at him and put my hands on my hips for added effect.
“Really?” Darn that smirk.
“Yeah. Really. I was taking you the scenic way. I know exactly where I’m going.” I hope I sound like I know where I’m going.
“And what scenery did you have to show me?” he teases. I point randomly, and he looks at what I’m pointing at. “A rock?”
I can feel myself turning bright red. “No, not a rock.” I can tell the super prat is trying hard not to laugh. “But there’s all the pretty houses, and such.”
He’s losing that battle not to laugh.
“Oh shut it,” I say, and then cut him off before he can say “but I wasn’t talking” by pointing to the park sign and saying, “Actually, I was just taking us to the park. It’s lovely this time of year.” I don’t know where that last bit came from. I sounded just like my mum.
The super prat looks dubiously at the sign. “The park, eh? You sure you didn’t get us lost because you were distracted by my good looks and charm, and then by pure luck managed to see that sign and then decided to pretend that’s where you were going all along?”
Whoa. That was kind of scarily accurate. Curse the super prat.
“Er . . . no! Of course not!” I reply quickly and probably defensively. The super prat smirks again.
“Fine then, let’s go to the park,” he says sounding like he’s suppressing laughter, and heads towards the sign. I really want to throw something at his head, but I stifle the urge and follow him.
Green Park contains lots of trees, bushes, some flowers, a small pond, a bunch of benches, and some swings. Oh, and there’s a small merry-go-round that I haven’t been on ever since went too fast on it and then puked on an old lady, who proceeded to beat me with her handbag.
Needless to say, I’m scarred for life.
“So . . . .” I say when we come to a halt in front of the swings. “This is the park.” Goodness. As my mates like to tell me, I really am a horribly awkward person sometimes.
Sirius looks around. “Looks like a great hang-out for old ladies and small children.” I grimace, because he’s absolutely right.
“Er, right. It is,” I reply. “Wanna swing?” He’s now looking at me with a peculiar expression on his face. “What?”
“Nothing,” he says, and then walks towards the swings, “get on, I’ll push you.”
I hop on a swing, still trying to figure out the weird expression he had. It was less of a “you’re nuts” look and more of a “you’re one-of-a-kind” look. I think. I hope.
And then next thing I know, Sirius’s hands are on my waist, and he gently gives me a shove. I don’t go very high.
“What kind of wimpy push was that?” I tease as I’m coming back down. Sirius laughs.
“I didn’t think you could handle much more than that,” he replies, before giving me another push, this one harder, and I go much higher. I laugh as the wind whips some hair loose of my ponytail.
“That old lady we saw earlier is stronger than you,” I joke. He laughs again, and next time I swing back towards him he grabs the swing and stops it. I barely manage to not fall off.
“Hey!” I cry, but his arms are already on my waist again, gently helping me regain my balance. I’d say it was unwanted physical contact, but it isn’t exactly unwanted. He smells good.
“Okay then,” he says, letting go of me and sitting on the swing next to me, “If you think I’m so weak we’ll just see how high you can go by yourself.”
“Is that a challenge?” I ask, grinning. He nods, and when I look at him I see he’s smirking again. “I’ll have you know, I have some major skills in the swinging department.”
He scoffs. “I bet I can go higher than you,” he says. In response, I kick off from the ground. “Hey, that’s cheating!”
“No it’s not!” I shoot back as I soar upwards. Sirius kicks off too.
For a while we swing, shouting abuses at each other as we each try to go higher. An old lady hobbles by and stares at us as if she’s never seen two teenagers having fun on the swings before.
Okay, she probably hasn’t.
And then, once Sirius and I are swinging in rhythm, just as we’re going as high as we can, and it’s about even, he reaches over and grabs my swing, yanking it towards him. Once again, I barely manage to hang on.
“Are you trying to kill me?” I ask, as we touch the ground. “Because I just saw my whole life flash before my eyes.”
I did too, and I never realized I had such an interesting life. Lots of horrific memories.
Sirius laughs. “Oh, Mellie, I wasn’t trying to kill you. I just thought that since it’s obvious I was swinging much higher than you, we should stop embarrassing ourselves and do something else.”
“What if I like embarrassing myself?”
“Well, then, you should be happy, because you’re very good at it.”
I give his swing a shove and he goes flying into the metal bars of the swing set.
“Ouch!” he cries as he clutches his probably-bruised shoulder. Now it’s my turn to smirk.
“You deserved it,” I reply. His eyes narrow and now it’s my turn to yell “Ouch!” as he pushes me into the other side of the swing set.
“That was uncalled for!” I exclaim as I rub my side. He raises an eyebrow.
“I think it was very much called for,” Sirius replies.
“Will you two pipe down?,” the old lady, who gave us the funny look before, shouts at us from her position at a bench several metres away. “You’re disturbing my peace! And Mellie, that definitely was called for, so both of you just shut up.”
Sirius and I try very hard not to burst into laughter.
“Sorry, ma’am,” I manage to get out without cracking up. She nods briskly and then goes back to her knitting. Sirius has got a hand shoved in his mouth to keep from laughing. I roll my eyes at him and then grab his free hand and drag him away from the swings and the crotchety old lady, towards an empty clearing a short distance away with a few benches. Hopefully the old lady can’t hear us from there.
Sirius starts laughing as soon as we’re a safe distance away, and I can’t help but join him.
“Wow,” he says once he’s stopped laughing. “You got told off by an old lady.”
“You did too,” I reply, and then we reach the clearing, so I release his hand and plop down on one of the benches. Sirius shrugs and sits next to me.
“She was probably just jealous,” he states. I snort.
“Of you,” he explains, grinning. “She wishes she was the one getting to spend time with the incredibly handsome Sirius.”
Well, somebody is certainly full of himself. It’s kind of a turn on.
Er, forget I just thought that. I’m definitely not attracted to Sirius. He’s a nutter.
“I really doubt that,” I inform him. He shakes his head but doesn’t reply, and we sit there in silence for a moment. It’s a really nice day, not too hot, not too cool, just right.
“So what do you want to do now?” Sirius asks lazily. I shut my eyes.
“I could go for a nap right now,” I reply. My legs feel like they’re about to fall off. I suppose it was that grand-tour of the neighbourhood that did it.
“Well, you’re no fun. Napping is boring,” he teases. I open one eye so I can deliver my brilliant comeback with some dignity, but when I do so, I realize that Sirius’s face is mere millimetres from mine, and instead all I can say is,
“ACK!” I jolt backwards, which causes the bench to fall over backwards, which causes Sirius to fall too, on top of me.
Besides the huge bump that’s forming on the back of my head, and the fact that Sirius is really heavy so I can barely breathe, it’s actually not all that bad. Sirius does smell quite good, after all.
“Er, sorry about that,” he says uncomfortably, pushing himself up a little with his elbows. “You, er, had a beetle on your face, and I was just getting it off, and er, yeah.”
Well at least I can breathe now. And wow, is Sirius actually blushing? Yes, I think he is. Hhmmm, he definitely doesn’t seem like the blushing type.
“Is it gone?” I ask. He looks confused.
“Is what gone?” he replies. I can’t help but roll my eyes.
“The beetle,” I clarify, “Is it gone?” Sirius still looks uncomfortable.
“Right.” He glances at my hair. “Nope, it isn’t. Hold still.” Propping himself up with one arm, he grabs the beetle with the other, flicks it away, and then rolls pushes himself off me. I sit up, a little relieved to be out of that situation, even if wasn’t entirely unpleasant.
Sirius stands up and then offers a hand to help me up. I take it, and once we’re both upright, we push the bench upright too.
“What do you say we head home?” I ask Sirius, feeling tired and like I’ve had enough excitement for one day. “I need to put ice on my head.”
“Sorry again,” he says, and I smile to say “it’s fine”. We start walking towards the park exit, with me slightly leading the way.
“So, will we really be heading home this time, or will there be another detour?” Sirius asks, smiling.
“No more detours,” I reply. My head hurts too much for detours.
Suddenly, there’s a sharp pain in my right hand. I look down and see a dead bee fall from the air. Ooh, I hate bees. And hell, now my hand really hurts! The bugger must’ve stung me!
“OW!” I cry as I stop walking and clutch my right hand with my left. Sirius looks alarmed.
“What happened?” he asks. My hand really, really hurts. Ow ow ow ow ow.
“A . . . bee . . . stung . . . me,” I manage to get out, my eyes watering with pain. Sirius, looking concerned, carefully takes my hand and examines it. I can’t help but whimper when his finger brushes against the sting.
“I’m gonna try and get the stinger out,” he says. I nod, because I don’t trust my voice right now. The combination of my head throbbing, and the pain in my hand is not a good one, and I don’t want to cry in front of him. I have low pain tolerance. Courtney says it’s because I’ve never had braces.
“There, got it,” he says after a minute. I let out the breath I just now realise I’ve been holding in. “You should probably put some ice on that too when you get home.” I nod again, and we start walking, a bit faster now.
“I’m usually not this much of a wimp,” I say after a minute. “I’m just . . .tired.” I don’t want Sirius thinking I’m the damsel-in-distress type. He frowns.
“I didn’t think you were being a wimp,” he replies. He sounds like he’s telling the truth, not just trying to make me feel better. “My little brother cried for ten minutes when a bee stung him. And he was twelve.”
I can’t help but giggle a bit. But my hand still hurts. And my head.
“I didn’t know you had a little brother,” I say, purely for the sake of saying something to get my mind of my hand/head. I can’t help but notice his face darkens a little bit.
“Yeah, Regulus,” he replies shortly. Okay, really now, what kind of name is ‘Regulus’? I’m pretty sure it’s a star system or something. That cannot be a real name. Regulus must be imaginary too.
I suddenly realize that Sirius hasn’t let go of my hand, and it’s been at least five minutes now since he got the stinger out. Oh my. I’m no dating expert - in fact the last date I had was five months ago and was a complete disaster - but I’m pretty sure there’s generally no hand-holding until at least the first date. And we haven’t even been on a date! He better not be counting this as a date, because it wasn’t. A date usually involves two people both acknowledging that they fancy each other, and I haven’t done that. So there, Mister Makebeliever.
I have to remedy this hand-holding situation immediately. But I can’t just yank my hand out of his, that’d be really rude, not to mention awkward. I could pretend to sneeze, and use that hand to wipe my nose, but that’d be kind of gross. Hmmm. . . . oh, I know!
“Look at that!” I exclaim, and pull my hand away from Sirius and use it to point randomly. He doesn’t seem to notice this, and looks to where I’m pointing.
“What?” he asks, looking confused. Oh, I hadn’t gotten that far.
“Er, nothing, sorry, I thought I saw another bee,” I answer, staring at the pavement to keep from blushing.
“Right,” he says, and I can’t see his expression because I’m still staring at the pavement. Well, at least he’s not holding my hand anymore. “Maybe you’ve got some sort of post traumatic stress disorder.”
Oh goodness, don’t get me started on PTSD or we’ll be here all night. Every single time I have a nightmare I have to analyze it with Mum, and nine out of ten times, she decides I have PTSD from “The Event”, and have to go to therapy.
“The Event” happened when I was seven, and Mum and Dad and I were driving back from Gran dad’s house in the country, and got stuck in a blizzard. The car rolled off the road, and then it wouldn’t start, and we had to walk to the nearest house in the freezing cold, and we all almost got frostbite.
And it was not traumatizing. I remember the whole time I was thrilled because the blizzard would mean school was cancelled the next day, which was brilliant because I had to give a presentation on the history of the royal family in front of the entire class.
I decide not to inform Sirius of this, because we’ve reached my driveway.
“Well, I’d better head inside and put ice on my hand, and head,” I say quickly. “I’d invite you in but Martha, the cleaning lady, is probably in there, and last time I brought a boy inside the house when she was there—“ I stop myself from relating the truly horrific events that took place. “Well, it wasn’t pretty.”
Sirius laughs/barks, and I grin back at him.
“Bye then, Mellie,” he says, cheerily. “Thanks for the chocolate.”
“You’re welcome, Sirius,” I reply, “See ya.”
And then I run inside to stick my head and hand in the freezer.
A/N: SOOO?! What'd you think? Did you notice how I snuck the beetle's son's revenge in there. Tricky, aren't I? And did you like the Sirius/Mellie action? I sure hope so, because there won't be a lot in the next chapter. Sorry about that, but there will be other good stuff in it, I hope. But I can't have Sirius fall on top of Mellie every chapter, or that would get repetitive. Anywho, review please, I love you all.
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