“Okay, who broke it?” I heard a voice shrieking. I rolled over and rubbed my eyes, glaring at whoever would dare to disrupt my sleep.
“What now, Moony?” James groaned. I felt myself awaken just a bit more and pushed the blankets away with my feet. Rubbing my eyes again to get the sleepers away, I sat up and pulled my shorts down a bit.
“Why is the spinner on the chore wheel gone?” Remus asked calmly. “I spent two hours the other day charming that bloody piece of cardboard, and I just…well this is kind of annoying, that’s all.”
“Relax, Moony, just look around, I’m sure it’s here somewhere,” Sirius prompted, rolling back over and pulled his blankets over his head. I personally could never seem to fall back asleep once woken up. It was a condition that I’d been having since…birth.
“I have looked, and I haven’t found it.”
“So it got up and walked away?” Jenny asked, skeptically. I stared at her, wondering if she knew, truly knew, that in the wizarding world, that probably wasn’t as far fetched as she presumed.
“Apparently,” Remus sighed, running a hand through his sandy blonde hair. I looked around me, wondering if maybe it had slid somewhere over in my direction, but the floor was clean, the blankets didn’t go to the floor—I could see under the beds and other than the trunks that housed our belongings, there was nothing.
“Well, we’ll figure something else out. But seriously, it’s too early. Go back to bed.” James mumbled, his mouth connected to his pillow and therefore making his voice muffled.
“No, no, I can’t,” Remus breathed, rolling over Sirius’s cot to gain access to the food. Sirius made an annoyed sound and then curled into a ball so that Remus could roll the rest of the way off his bed. I laughed to myself, silently of course, at the silliness and the general disregard the boys had for one another. It was all in good fun, and I sort of envied their bond.
Remus scuffled over to the food cabinet and then pulled out some crisps and began to munch on them.
“Remus?” I called lightly. He turned to me, hand halfway to his mouth full light colored crunchy wafers.
“Huh?” he asked, shoving them into his mouth.
“Crisps? At,” I checked my watch, “Nine in the morning?”
“Evans, you obviously don’t know much about men if you think that Rem is going to eat something nutritious.”
“Black, I wasn’t talking to you, go back to sleep.”
Surprisingly he did what I told him, and I heard his low snores in just a few moments. Rolling my eyes, I looked back to Remus who had discreetly replaced the crisps and was now walking on his way back to his cot. As he sat down, my vision was blocked by Jenny, who was leaning up and stretching, her short top riding up higher with her movements. I didn’t, however, miss the expression on Remus’s face when this happened.
I mentally had to remind myself that just because Remus was ultra sensible, he was still a guy.
“Hey, I’m in the mood to walk.”
“How nice,” I told Jenny, smiling sarcastically, but she didn’t seem to catch on or get offended.
“Let’s get dressed and just go for a quick stroll, what do you say Lily?” Jenny smiled at me, but I couldn’t return the nice gesture. I mean, sure I wanted to get to know Jenny and like her even, but I was definitely in the mood to just sit back and read today.
“Aw, c’mon, please?” She pouted and then smiled brightly at me, pulling her hair back with a bright blue ribbon and pushing back the covers, dropping to fetch some clothes from her trunk. “We can explore this place a bit.”
“Sure,” I hesitated. She gathered an outfit, and then started walking to the loo, stopping by my bunk to smile another bright grin at me and then proceeding and shutting the door behind her. I heard the faucet turn on and then turned a bit to see James grinning up at me from his pillow.
I put a hand under my chin and leaned forward, a bit self-conscious that if I didn’t, then he would see some double chin. I raised an eyebrow at him, “What?”
“Just keep your mind open, Lily. I’m sure she’s not as shallow and dumb as you believe her to be,” he told me and then shut his eyes. I stared at him for a while and wondered how he could have possibly picked up on my latent disdain for Jenny. And even hearing his voice say my name in casual conversation was enough for Remus to turn his head and glance at me, eyebrows furrowed and a bemused smile on his lips. I raised an eyebrow back at him, really not in the mood to do this right now.
“Okay,” I heard her light, flowery voice wisp by me. “The loo’s free!”
“Thanks,” I said, watching as she bounced back to her cot and put her clothes into her trunk, flicking her wand at them at first and casting a cleaning charm on them. She was in a bright blue top and a dark denim skirt, with stockings and boots on. She looked like she was going shopping in Hogsmeade, not a hike through the forest with me.
I grabbed a few articles of clothing from my trunk and hurried into the washroom, brushing my teeth and hair before changing. I threw on some brown pants and a light pink long sleeved shirt before putting on a dark green short sleeve shirt over it. I didn’t look as glamorous as Jenny did, but I figured if she looked excellent, then I might as well make an effort.
Walking out, I saw that James was sleeping, as was Sirius. Remus was still trying to find that spinner, aiming his wand in the air and shouting, “accio spinner!” with a disregard for the other two boys. I laughed when Sirius opened one eye, seemingly rolled it, and then closed it again, once more pulling the blanket over his head.
I coughed back a laugh and then turned to see Jenny grabbing a small, decorative purse, gliding towards the door. I followed, not bothering to grab anything except my wand and a hair tie.
We walked out of the cabin and let the crisp, cold air chill our lungs before stepping away. Jenny breathed in and then remarked, almost a bit too cheery, that it was far too cold to be May.
“It’s probably just because it’s morning,” I told her, stepping over a rather hefty looking log. She nodded, and then looked at the other white cabins that surrounded the forest. I looked as well, being greeted by the monotonous white walls, gray roofs, the tree blending and shrouding so that it all become somewhat picturesque.
“So…” She put her lips together and gave a rather forced smile. “We should talk.”
“Go ahead,” I gave a tiny grin, showing I couldn’t really care less about how this conversation, this frivolous bonding moment went. I had no interest to keep contact with this girl as soon as the two weeks was up, and I was almost positive she felt the same way about me.
“Lily, I know we’re from different houses. I know that we have different backgrounds, but honestly, if we don’t stick together, we’re going to end up ripping our hair out and fighting, so I think that it’s best, if for these few days that we’re together, we form a truce.”
Why was everyone suddenly forming truces? Was it really necessary to pretend to be friends? I would be quite all right just avoiding and ignoring each other for this time.
“You know what?” I asked, my voice almost too cheery. She looked at me expectantly with her flawlessly shaped eyebrows high on her forehead. “I agree.”
“Oh, you do?” She sounded so thrilled that I almost felt bad for lying. “Oh, Lily Evans, I know that if we just cooperate and try to live in peace, we’re going to get on so well!”
We walked on for several minutes, discussing vaguely our favorite colors and what we thought about the boys. Apparently, we shared the same opinions on Sirius—he was slightly lazy and ate practically all the time. We were just about to discuss James when an idea popped into my mind, and I couldn’t evade it.
“Look, Jenny, if we are going to attempt to be friends for these two weeks, then I think we really should get to know each other. I’m not saying this to be mean, and I hope you don’t take it the wrong way, but we are really different people. And I think we need to establish some rules.”
“I completely agree,” She beamed at me and continued to walk. “How about you tell me what bothers you and what I can do to improve, and I’ll do the same after.”
“Okay, but we have to agree that we won’t get mad. I know that some things we have to say might be hurtful, but we need to ignore the personal rubbish, yeah?” I asked, moving a branch aside and going along the dirt path that someone else had laid.
“All right—well, Jenny, I don’t know why, but I think I have some impression of you in my head…that’s really…really shallow. And I don’t know if you are, or if that’s an act, or what, but I’d like to know if this somewhat blank exterior is really…you.”
“Oh my god.” She gasped, and I looked sideways at her. Tears were slowly filling her eyes, and she looked at me with complete shock in her eyes. “Why would you….that was so…hurtful.”
“Jenny! I didn’t…I er…really…I just, didn’t mean to…well…I’m!” I gaped like a landed fish and started fumbling for some unprecedented apology.
“Oh my god!” She started quacking. Her shoulders started thundering back and forth and she began to tremble, doubling over so I couldn’t see her face.
“You should have seen your face!” She gasped out, her eyes still streaming out tears, but tears of laughter. I glared daggers at her, completely shocked by this display of playfulness.
“You…you were joking?”
“Well, yeah, sorry Lily!” She kept laughing, trying to calm down.
“You are such a freak!” I breathed, almost laughing myself.
“Oh, you should have seen your face! That was great!” Then she seemed to sober up and breathed more deeply. “Lily, I want to be an actress. I want to see the world and learn, I want to be someone important. And I can’t do that in a little white cabin. But I can get people’s attention. I’m not shallow, I’m thoughtful, I’m smart even—my marks are pretty decent, if I do say so myself. I just have a certain way of living, and I don’t really feel ready to shed that skin yet, you know?”
“What’s really scary is that I understood that completely.”
“Aw, c’mon, Lily, I know that deep inside you, there is some kind of that preppy, cutesy, cliché girl! You just need to find her!”
“Yeah, this is a bit much, Jen, not gonna lie.” I sighed and paused, standing in front of a rock that looked like it was being eaten by moss. “Okay, tell me what annoys you about me.”
“I’m going to be honest—you’re too uptight. I know that I’m acting kind of shallow; I’ll work on that, but seriously, Lily, you’re so tense!” To demonstrate her point she put her hands on either side of Lily, cupping her arms, and shook her a little. Despite herself, and her own personal space boundaries, she smiled and let out a small snort of laughter.
“Okay, okay, well, we should be heading back.”
“Why?” Jenny asked, her eyebrows raised. She smirked and took hold on my hand as she began to skip. “The key to being completely loose and shallow,” she began. Mentally, I questioned if I was truly awake. I honestly never thought that I’d hear those words, and in such a condescending, advice-giving tone! She continued, “Is to stop caring.”
She gave what I presumed to be a fake giggle and then skipped some more. I followed, half because I was completely confused, and half because the wench wouldn’t let go of my hand.
“This is ridiculous,” I muttered under my breath, almost low enough to be unheard—almost.
“No,” She smirked, stopping abruptly and almost making me crash right into her. “You know what’s ridiculous? How you and James seem to have so much, and yet you’re too uptight to even open your eyes!”
“What the hell does that mean?” I asked, and although my wordage may have been slightly rough, my tone was light.
“Lily, James practically drools over you. I’ve seen the way you look at him too—I don’t know if you have let yourself realize this yet, but he’s gorgeous! If I wasn’t such a good person,” I scoffed at this, but she continued, “I would snatch him up for myself!”
“Jenny, I know that James is fit, but so are Sirius and Remus. Just because I can appreciate their attractiveness, doesn’t necessarily mean that I’m attracted to James.”
She seemed to think this over. We started to walk again, this time back to our white cabin. “But I’ve heard you talk to him!”
“Yeah, I’ve heard you talk to Sirius and James and Remus. Doesn’t mean a thing.”
“No, no, Lil, I heard you and James talking during the night. I’d pretended to be asleep—don’t hurt me—and I heard you talking. There’s huge chemistry there!” She smirked, having successfully one-upped me. I scowled and thought to myself.
“I don’t like Potter.”
“Look, I am by no means an expert on relationships. I may have had a few snogs now and then, but I don’t know much. What I do know is when people are in denial. You even reverted back to using his last name. Didn’t you two promise to be civil?” I grimaced.
“I don’t like him!”
“Don’t walk away from me! I’m sorry, okay? I didn’t mean to offend you, I just can see how you look at him. I hear how you talk to him—like it’s just you and him in the world, like you only have eyes for him. It’s just that I know well enough that if people have the chance to be together, they should take it!” She marched a bit ahead of me, scowling for the first time since I’d met her in the Great Hall a week ago for our introduction to the project.
“Jenny!” I called, running to catch up with her. “Look, I’m thick-headed sometimes. I don’t like him though. Or at least I don’t think I do, and personally I don’t think I ever will—“
I was about to continue when she cut me off.
“You don’t think you will, or you won’t let yourself?”
“I want to say sorry. Okay? Can we just forget this?” I looked at her, suddenly very aware that someone that I’d loathed just this morning had now, by two o’clock in the afternoon, made me feel inadequate enough to apologize—and mean it.
“I accept your apology,” she gave a small, hesitant smile. “But I won’t forget this.”
“Good enough,” I chuckled, grabbing her arm, looping it through my own, and then walking just a bit closer to her. She smiled and nudged me a little. The sun was blazing down as us, and the chilly air which we’d encountered earlier in the morning was completely absent.
“I think that’s us,” she pointed to one of the many white cabins that we’d seen for the last few hours.
“Yeah, number fourteen.”
As we entered the cabin, Jenny shook off her boots and placed them discreetly by the door, greeting the boys with a quick smile and then flopping down on her cot. I placed my own shoes beside hers, walking over to the food cabinet after feeling and hearing my stomach growling for the past half hour. I quickly grabbed two Curly Wurly Cadbury chocolate bars.
“Go for a good walk?” Remus asked Jenny.
"Smashing," she answered, pulling her blankets around her and shutting her eyes.
“You must have gone round the entire establishment—you were gone for three hours,” James nodded to Jenny.
“Actually, we barely made it through half the camp. We turned back when there was still a ton more path ahead of us,” I told him, unwrapping of my chocolates. He laughed, biting the head off a chocolate frog.
“Did you discover you are actually best friends?” He asked through a chocolate filled mouth. I laughed and shrugged.
“Well we did have quite an interesting conversation,” I mumbled, chewing my food slowly, savoring the taste.
“Chances,” I said quickly. I turned around and saw Jenny watching me. “We talked about chances that you get, and how, when you know it’s the right time to, you should take them.”
“I’m so bored!” Sirius grumbled. He was lying on his cot, his feet high above his head resting on the wall.
“How about a game?” Jenny suggested without opening her eyes.
“Okay, but if it involves some kind of dancing, I say no!” Remus grumbled, glaring at Sirius.
“Hey, you know that the Mandrake liked it!” Sirius yelled at him.
“Volume!” I shouted at him, glaring over the top of my book.
“Yeah, yeah…” He mumbled.
“Truth or dare?” Jenny asked.
“Too cliché,” I replied.
“No, no, I like it. It sounds like fun!” James stood from his bed and yawned while stretching.
“Assemble!” Sirius called, running to the center of the room where we’d all sat in a circle to make the chore wheel just a few days ago.
“How are we going to do this?” asked Remus.
“The chore wheel?” I offered.
“That would be a great plan,” Began James.
“But the spinner is gone,” Remus finished.
Jenny rolled her eyes and put an empty Coca Cola bottle in the middle of the circle, and then spun it.
James widened his eyes as the mouth of the bottle landed in his direction.
Jenny smirked, “Okay, James,” her eyes fluttered to me, and I scowled. “Truth…or dare?”
I've been getting a lot of reviews asking for longer chapters, so I tried to write just a bit more this time.
Thank you so, so much to everyone who has reviewed so far! I'm working on responding to all my reviews right no--I have seen them, just haven't had time to say thank you and reply to everything yet.
I just decided that I'm going to make a playlist for this story, which will be planned so perfectly that you can play it as you read the chapters and all that jazz. It will be coming as soon as I can. Thanks again guys, and please review!
Write a Review White Houses: Chapter Four. A Chat With Jenny.