Chapter 35 : Chapter Thirty–Five: Stupid
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“I don’t get what’s up with him,” Lily ran her hand through her long, red hair, obviously frustrated.
Adara sighed and flipped the page of her book as she laid her head in her other hand, “I don’t know either, Lily.”
“It’s been almost three weeks, Addie; why is he still acting like I’m contaminated?” Adara let her head drop onto her book on the table. Lily didn’t even jump – she was staring at wall, thinking.
“I don’t know, Lily,” Adara repeated, her words somewhat muffled by the pages. She felt like that was going to be the only phrase she would be able to say in another few days.
“He’s had to have said something to you,” she trailed off.
“I don’t kn–”
“No, no!” She patted Adara violently on the head until she sat up, looking weary. “He talked to Sirius!” The red head’s green eyes lit up. “And you’re dating Sirius, right?”
Adara tried to hide her smile, “I am.”
“So talk to him about it!” Lily hit the table as if coming to some great conclusion.
“Lily,” Adara started. The other girl’s face dropped, “You are becoming obsessed with this.”
“I am not,” Lily scoffed, looking away. “I honestly don’t care what James –”
“You haven’t shut up about him for three weeks.”
“I don’t know what you are talking about,” Lily said, opening her own book for the first time.
“Sure,” Adara grinned to herself and shut her book. “I’m going to eat.”
Lily looked up, “Aren’t you going to write your essay?”
Adara swung her bag over her shoulder, “Already done. I finished my essay an hour ago while you were still talking about James.” Adara raised her eyebrows and spun on her heal, walking away and leaving a speechless Lily behind her.
She walked into the Great Hall and smiled upon seeing a mop of black hair, her heart thumped loudly as Sirius pulled her onto his lap and kissed her full on the mouth, “Hi.” He grinned.
Adara concentrated on breathing as she slid off of his lap and onto the bench beside him, “Where’s James?” she looked at her boyfriend then across the table at Remus; after talking about the boy for three hours straight she couldn’t help but notice his absence. They sighed almost simultaneously.
“In our dorm last I saw him,” Remus told her. Adara grimaced before beginning to pile food on her plate.
It wasn’t that James had just been avoiding Lily since the party – he’d been nearly avoiding everyone. The day after the party Adara had barely seen Sirius at all due to the fact he and James needed a “man date,” and ever since then it seemed like she and him hadn’t had time together at all. James was moody and pathetic-looking, always sulking quietly in the back of a room instead of taking center stage. He talked when addressed, even to Lily, though he wasn’t his normally bubbly self and never looked at the red head directly. There was no reason for the teachers to be alarmed though – in fact, if anything, they were impressed thinking that Remus had finally settled his friend down. It wasn’t the teachers that had to deal with the heartbreaking sight of his flat hair and distant eyes coupled with his “I don’t care” attitude.
And all of this was despite the fact that Lily had dumped the Hufflepuff. After a week of seeing him here and there while having James stare dolefully in the opposite direction of her whenever possible, she had stopped seeing him. “His eyes were weird. And he talked about his Mum too much,” she’d listed when Adara asked why she’d broken it off. It was almost believable, too. Except she’d glanced at James as soon as she thought Adara wasn’t watching.
Three weeks. The Marauders and Adara and the rest of the school had been dealing with this for three weeks now, and frankly, Adara wasn’t enjoying having her two friends who obviously fancied each other, keeping her from seeing her boyfriend. Yes, it was selfish and yeah, she could understand why James didn’t want to be around Lily, but every time Lily beckoned her away from Sirius or James moodily stalked away looking back to see if Sirius was coming… Adara couldn’t help but want to scream.
“Lily just talked about him for three hours straight,” Adara sighed as she picked at her green beans.
“That sounds like a fun conversation,” Sirius deadpanned.
“If I had a knut for every time I said ‘I don’t know, Lily,’ I’d be bloody rich.”
“I can imagine.”
They sat in silence, each eating and thinking, until someone slammed into Adara’s back pushing her forward thus forcing her spoon of potatoes to collide with her nose.
“Ugh!” she grabbed a napkin and wiped her nose as both she and Sirius turned to see who had hit her.
“Oh, sorry!” exclaimed a girl as the guy she was holding hands with stopped to see what the commotion was.
Adara stared in shock at the girl, she looked so familiar, but it wasn’t until the guy turned, “Gracie?” Jayden asked, still holding the girl from her potion’s class’ hand.
“I’m so sorry, Adara! I didn’t mean to bump you – I wasn’t watching where I was going and –”
“It’s fine,” She heard Sirius say from next to her.
She was still looking at Jayden’s face, albeit now much, much redder face, as she saw Gracie smile and nod, “Come on, Jay!” she smiled and tugged him along after her.
“Git probably pushed her into you,” Sirius muttered as he turned back to his food.
Adara turned back around too, “Maybe,” she allowed, still in shock. Jayden was with Gracie now? She glanced at their back to really look at Gracie; she was a little taller than Adara, slim, and had short chin-length natural blonde hair that stopped right above the red scarf she was wearing. She was pretty; Adara had never really paid attention to her before.
“You okay?” Sirius asked her, looking more concerned than was necessary. Adara shook the thoughts from her head, “Yeah, yeah. Of course…” she trailed off, looking back at Sirius. She felt herself smiling at him, “Just threw me off a bit.” She kissed him on the cheek and went back to eating.
After dinner, Sirius walked Adara back to her common room but soon had to return to James. Adara sighed as she watched him disappear down the staircase and turned to enter the common room. The first thing she noticed was a small group of people crowded around the notice board. Curious, she walked over and tried to peer over to see what was going on.
“Bunch up people, I’m trying to get out here,” she heard a familiar voice say and soon Christine appeared by her side. “Oh, hey Adara.” She greeted as she straightened her hair and uniform.
“What’s going on?”
“Oh, apparition lessons start March second, this coming Saturday – they finally found another instructor,” Christine replied happily.
“March second?” Adara said, her eyes widening.
“This Saturday, yeah,” Christine furrowed her brows. “Why?”
“Shit!” Adara cursed. “Take this upstairs for me, please,” she thrust her rucksack into Christine’s arms then turned on her heal and ran out of the common room before the other girl could blink.
She sprinting all the way to the portrait of the fat lady, breathed the password and pushed her way up to the seventh years’ dorm not even thinking for a second what she would do if Sirius was there, “James!?” she gasped, looking around wildly.
“Adara?” Adara swung her head to the left as she heard her name and saw James draw back his hangings.
“Thank Merlin,” she sighed before looking around. “Where’s Sirius?” she asked him, walking closer to his bed. It was then that she noticed he didn’t have a shirt on and was simply wearing an old pair of sweatpants. She also happened to notice how damn fit he was – though it was nothing compared to her Sirius, at least in her mind.
“He went to the kitchens to get me something to eat- though I told him I wasn’t hungry,” James said in his dead voice. Adara wanted to kick him, shake him, anything to get some emotion out of him.
Instead she sighed, “When?”
“Just now, I’m surprised you didn’t see him.”
“Okay, then we have a while good,” Adara nodded and began pacing at the foot of James’ bed.
“What’s up with you?” James asked as he climbed out of bed and leaned against the pole at the end to watch Adara, a bit of confusion and maybe a small hint of amusement in his voice.
“This Saturday, James! How could I have forgotten!” Adara threw her hands up and faced James. His usually messy hair wasn’t sticking up per usual, but lie almost flat to his head. His brown eyes seemed even darker than usual, the spark of mischief absent.
“Oh, Sirius’ birthday?” he asked.
“Fuck, James, yes! Sirius’ birthday! I’m a rubbish girlfriend; I absolutely suck at remembering birthdays!” Adara exclaimed. “Please tell me you have something planned or can help me or can help me anyway because I need to get him something –”
“Adara, calm down,” James said, this time definitely more amused than she had seen him in three weeks. Well, at least her freaking anxiety attack was making him smile… “Remus and Peter and I have got the party covered – marauder tradition, you know.”
Adara breathed an auditable sigh of relief, “I love you so much right now.”
“I wouldn’t’ let Sirius hear you saying that again,” James half-smiled at her, referring to the time they had kidnapped her to plan Lily’s party. “You missed mine and Remus’ I’m afraid, they were before you and Sirius were together.”
“Oh damn, and I wanted to see everyone dancing drunkedly on each other,” Adara feigned disappointment.
“Hey, I’ll have you know that I can have completely sober people dancing on me.” James interjected. “It’s just that I don’t like to dance on everything with a pulse…” he had that dark look in his eye again that informed Adara that they were no longer discussing people in the room.
“I don’t want to talk about it,” He turned and went to get back in his bed.
“No,” Adara caught his wrist, “we’re talking about this.”
“Adara, I said –” James tried to gently pull his hand away.
“And I don’t give a fuck,” Adara said loudly and commanding, causing James to stop resisting. “I want to know why you’re wasting away up here – she dumped that guy for you James! She’ll never admit that but even so it’s obvious that she hates how you’re treating her!”
“She doesn’t give a fuck about me other than as someone to yell at and that much is obvious,” James told her sternly.
“You’re not the one that’s had to deal with her these last three weeks, James Potter. I just spent three hours listening to her thoughts on why you hate her now! If you love her like I think you do – like I’ve heard you do – you wouldn’t be treating her like shit!”
James stared at Adara coldly before pulling his hand out of her grasp and walking past and away from her. He paced for a minute while Adara watched before he spoke in a controlled voice, “You don’t know anything, Adara.” He stated simply. Adara couldn’t count on her hands the number of times she’d heard that from this very boy. “I love her, okay? I do, and I’m not treating her like shit. I’m just trying to keep myself from getting hurt again – I don’t think that makes me such a terrible person.”
Adara’s heart ached for the topless boy standing in front of her and she walked over to him, grabbing a shirt off of his bed to give him, “It doesn’t, James, I know that. I just think that maybe you shouldn’t be so cold to her. She misses you – even if she won’t admit it to herself.”
“I don’t think so,” he looked away from Adara.
“I know she does, James, call it a girl thing.”
James sighed, “I just don’t know what to do anymore.”
“Just be nice to Lily – and maybe try to talk to other girls, Merlin knows they all fancy you,” Adara joked.
James half-smiled again as he looked at her with his brown eyes, “How can anyone resist this, Ms. Moore,” he asked.
“I have no clue, Mr. Potter,” Adara laughed and moved forward to wrap her arms around her friend.
“Thanks,” he whispered, holding her tight to his muscled chest.
“Anytime,” Adara said back and turned her head to kiss him on the cheek.
“-the fuck is going on here?”
Adara and James broke apart as the voice sounded against the walls. It wasn’t a yell – more like shock and/or anger that was trying (and pretty much failing) to be suppressed.
“Did you get those treacle tarts?” James asked his friend immediately.
Adara hit him with his own shirt then, upon realizing that that looked even more sketchy, dropped it to the ground, “I was trying to get him to put his shirt back on!” she said, her mouth speaking before her brain caught up.
Sirius just looked from James to Adara, trying to take it in, the bag of food that Adara assumed had been in his hand now on the floor next to his feet, “I need to leave before I say something I regret,” Sirius said in a forced-calm voice right before turning on his heel and marching out of the room, slamming the door behind him.
“Oohh,” James exclaimed in realization, his eyes widening as he turned to look at Adara who was past the point of thinking anything. “He thinks… we were… he walked in just as… fuck.”
“Yes, James, that’s exactly where he thinks that that was going!” Adara snapped, walking away from him and towards the door, still not comprehending what had just happened.
“Wait – Adara,” she turned as James called to her. “Let me c–”
“No, that would be worse. I need to –” she trailed off, not knowing what she needed to do. She didn’t even know where Sirius was right now. Where he’d go if he thought that his best mate was sleeping with his girlfriend.
He can’t really think that, can he?
She watched James run a hand through his hair, a gesture that made his hair stick up in all the usual places but she didn’t realize this now. “At least take the map,” he said finally, as he went over to dig through his trunk. He pulled out a blank sheet of parchment and walked over to hand it to her. “He can’t really…”
“Yeah… he knows that we…”
James nodded, “Yeah, he knows we aren’t.”
“He’s just shocked or something,” James reasoned.
“Yeah,” Adara agreed, hoping he was right. “Well I should probably go make sure…”
Adara took the parchment from him and exited the dorm without another word. Once she was in the corridor she took a deep breath, “I solemnly swear I am up to no good,” she breathed, her voice cracking a bit. She wouldn’t cry. Sirius was fine. Just overreacting, surely he couldn’t think that she would cheat on him – least of all with his best mate. This was James, for fuck’s sake, he was Lily’s.
She watched as the ink crept to the surface of the paper, showing her the location of everyone at Hogwarts. She didn’t have time to marvel at the advanced magic, she begin immediately searching for her boyfriend.
She started getting anxious after about thirty seconds of not seeing him on there before she thought to check… there he is.
The astronomy tower, she should have known that. She wiped the map clean and all but ran up to the tower. When she reached the door she took a deep breath before pushing it open, which was good because the sight that greeted her was breathtaking. Sirius was standing on the other side of the tower, his dark hair shining in the light of the stars and the almost-full moon. He was standing slightly hunched over in a stance of hurt or pain, but he still looked completely beautiful. Adara felt bad interrupting such a scene with her mediocre presence.
But he was here because of her, and he was hurting because of her, and she couldn’t stand that last part, so she let the door shut noisily behind her to announce her entrance. He jumped slightly upon hearing it, but didn’t turn around. Adara walked over to him and put her hand on his arm, he tugged it out of her reach and walked to the other side of the room again.
Her heart stung with rejection and her eyes prickled uncomfortably but she managed to swallow, “Sirius, please,” she said her voice completely giving her state of emotion away.
He was silent for almost a full minute before turning to look at her, “What do you want me to say, Adara?”
Adara felt tears leak down her cheeks and she pulled her jacket closer to her body as a gust of wind blew through, “You can’t honestly believe that I’d cheat on you, Sirius! You know I love you and –”
“How am I supposed to know that? Huh?” he roared, throwing his hands up in the air.
“What are you talking about? I love you–”
“Don’t give me that, Adara Moore,” he snapped.
“Sirius, you have to listen to me, why are you –”
“You loved Boot didn’t you,” he said almost to himself.
“What?” Adara was stunned by the random change of subject. “What are you talking about? This isn’t about him this is about James!”
“No, it’s really not,” he turned to look at her full on. “You loved Boot didn’t you?”
Adara was stunned at how hurt and angry he looked. “Yes, you know I did. But not anymore! I love you now, I don’t want him anymore!”
“I’m just saying that you loved Boot and you didn’t mind snogging me up in the hospital wing so how the fuck am I supposed to believe that you can’t love me and still snog James with his shirt in your hand in my own fucking dorm?” he said in a low voice.
Adara’s jaw dropped and she swore her heart stopped beating. He did not just… how could he… but that was… she couldn’t even form coherent thoughts. All she knew is that her heart had just completely stopped and dropped into her stomach where it was breaking into a thousand pieces. She couldn’t breathe, she couldn’t think, she couldn’t feel the drying tears that had long stopped out of pure shock.
Then came the anger, in a split second everything had gone form hurt to pain to choking to anger. She looked up at Sirius, more mad at him than she had ever been, and felt her hand reach up and crack him across the face. “You know that was not the same thing and you were the one that fucking kissed me, you no good, stupid bastard. That right there is the reason you come from the Blackest family in the entirety of the wizarding world.” She spat at him, seeing the shock on his face as he stood there with one hand to his cheek right before rushing out of the tower and down the stairs, not stopping until she collapsed on her bed in sobs that ran through her whole body.
“Adara, Adara!?” Christine was through the dormitory door a second after she was and on her bed a second later, pulling her sobbing friend into her arms. “What happened, baby, what’s wrong?” Christine rocked, running her hand through Adara’s hair soothingly and she sobbed. “Shh, it’s okay. You’re okay. It’ll be okay.” Christine whispered over and over as she held Adara.
And the latter didn’t have the breath to correct her.
“Up you get, come on Addie,” Christine shook Adara until she was awake.
“Go away, Chris,” Adara moaned, turning over.
“You have to get up, we have Runes,” Christine told her gently.
“I’m not going.”
“Yes, you are.”
“Adara Moore get out of bed and get dressed right now or I’m writing to your mother and telling her what is going on,” Christine threatened.
Adara rolled over in bed and opened her crusted-shut eyes, “You wouldn’t.”
“Try me.” Christine had her hands on her hips and was looking at Adara with such a fierce look that she knew her friend wasn’t kidding in the slightest.
“I hate you so much,” Adara muttered as she threw her legs over the side of the bed and stood up, reaching for her kilt.
“Don’t you want to shower?” Christine asked in a tone that told Adara the exact face her ‘friend’ was probably making.
“I want to go back to sleep,” Adara told her as she sniffed a shirt, and deciding it wasn’t too bad slipped it over her head without unbuttoning it.
“Adara you’ve worn that shirt all week,” Christine told her. “Look it still has the mascara stains on it from that night –” she stopped dead at the look she was receiving from the brunette. “I mean, you look great let’s go get breakfast.” She led the way out of the dorm.
“I’m not hungry,” Adara slung her bag over her shoulder and followed her… or she did until she ran into her.
Christine had stopped and spun around, looking mutinous, “Fucking hell Adara, it’s Friday and I haven’t had breakfast since Monday, we’re going to get breakfast. You don’t have to eat if you don’t want, I’m not going to force feed you again, but you are going with me or I swear to Merlin, Circe, and every other great wizard I will write to your mum.”
Adara stared at Christine after her little outburst, but didn’t show any emotion. “Fine, let’s go.” She said and walked past her friend and down the stairs.
They were silent on the way down to the Great Hall, Adara trying not to think of anything in particular. She translated the speech Christine had made into runes and was in the middle of trying to remember the Hogwarts song, when she was nearly tackled in the Entrance Hall.
“Bloody hell,” Adara cursed, looking up to see who had hit her.
“Bloody hell is right, Adara,” James Potter looked down on her patronizingly. “Where are you going?”
“To get breakfast,” Christine answered for her when it became apparent that Adara wasn’t going to.
“I’m betting Adara isn’t hungry.”
“Mind if I steal her?”
“Go for it, maybe you’ll have better luck than me,” Christine shrugged, relinquishing Adara to James as if she were a small child. Not that Adara cared. Adara didn’t care about much since the last Monday. If she had, she would have noticed that James’ hair stuck up messily just like it had before, even though he wore a stressed expression.
James swung his arm around Adara’s shoulder and led her off towards the Runes classroom, or that’s what Adara figured, “You haven’t talked to me since Monday night, Adara.”
“Sorry, I didn’t know if that would be the best thing to do,” Adara told him stiffly.
“Merlin, Addie, I feel awful about this whole thing – it’s all my fault and Sirius” Adara flinched when he said his name “isn’t even mad at me anymore.”
“It’s not your fault, James. You’re not the one that…” she trailed off, not knowing how to explain what Sirius had done. She sighed, “It’s just not your fault, okay? He knows that nothing happened, or he would have if he pulled his head out of his arse and thought about it for more than a second.”
“He knows nothing happened,” James told her softly. “I explained everything.”
“Bully for you.”
“Addie, why don’t you just talk to him?”
“Because it wasn’t my fault.”
“You’re not the one with the bruised cheek,” James chastised her pulling his arm off of her shoulders; he wavered under the look she gave him.
“He deserved that, and he knows he deserved that or he would have had the nurse fix it all up,” Adara told him darkly as they entered the empty Runes classroom. She moved to the left, the very back row where she had been sitting in all of her classes all week.
“I know,” James ran his hand through his hair. “Lily doesn’t like this either, you know.”
Adara looked at him at the mention of Lily, “You two are talking again?”
“Yeah, I had to ask her something the other day and we talked – but that’s not the point. The point is that you both over reacted and said things that you didn’t mean –”
“He’s the one who –”
“That shot at his family?”
Adara quit talking. Okay, so she hadn’t meant that about his family; even if they were trying to kill her and her family, she understood that Sirius wasn’t anything like them. It had just happened to be the only think that she could think of that would hurt him as much as he had hurt her.
“Exactly,” James said. “You two obviously love each other, Adara, and I’m not just grasping at straws here like you were when you were trying to cheer me up.”
“I wasn’t gras –”
“Don’t interrupt me,” James cut her off. “All I’m saying is that you and him need to talk, at the very least. You’re both being immature and brooding and are obviously miserable.”
They were quiet for a moment while Adara digested this.
“He’s miserable?” she asked in a small voice. The fact that he might be feeling even the tiniest bit of what she was nearly tore her in half but also made her feel better. It was very confusing.
James gave her an exasperated look, “I can’t believe you even have to ask me that, Adara. And therefore, I am not even going to dignify that stupid question with an answer.” Adara opened her mouth to defend herself, but James held a hand up. “Nope. I have to get to class anyway.” He stood up, “Oh, and by the way, you stink – no offense.”
Adara half-heartedly gave him the finger as he kissed her on the head in a very friendly manner, “Talk to him – I’m giving you the same advice you gave me so don’t even try to say it’s stupid.”
“Go away, James.”
“Oh, Sirius’ party is at eight tomorrow night in the room of requirement, just so you know,” he said as he left the room. Adara banged her head down on the desk. She should have just stayed in bed… or at least showered.
Adara lay in bed the next morning, Sirius’ birthday, and actually thought about him. She hadn’t gotten him anything – no present, no card, nothing. Though they weren’t necessarily talking so she didn’t know if that was bad or not. She wasn’t even sure if they were still dating or not. Can you still be dating someone after you cracked him across the face and insulted him?
She didn’t think so, but she didn’t like not to think so, which is why she hadn’t been thinking lately. Dawn was just breaking and she took a minute to marvel at the fact that she was even awake. She hadn’t been falling asleep until well past midnight and had therefore been sleeping until, like yesterday, Christine woke up and demanded she get her arse out of bed for something like apparation lessons.
But not today. Today was different. Today she had woken up just as it was grey outside – the exact shade of grey that made her think about him. Now, she could see through the cracks in her bed hangings, the sky was pink and blue and yellow and the sun was halfway up. Soon Christine would get up and Laila and her other dormmates. They had all been ignoring her lately, skirting around her like she had some contagious disease.
Heartbreak. A disease called heartbreak.
She rolled over onto her side and stared at the royal blue hangings as she thought. Maybe she should just go talk to Sirius. Maybe they were just overreacting, both of them. She did love him, that much was (literally) painfully obvious.
Really, when it came to matters of love, this year had shown her only that everything is easily shattered.
“Are you going to the party?”
“I don’t know, Christine.”
“I think you should.”
“I know you do, Lily.”
“This is getting ridiculous and everyone knows it.”
“Not even his fan club has begun to look at him with those sneaky glances again; they know he’s yours.”
Adara sighed and looked up from her book. She was hiding in the very back corner of the library but apparently that hadn’t deterred these two freaking gingers. Okay, so neither Christine nor Lily were technically “ginger” but Adara was not happy and she would call them whatever she pleased.
She also knew that the only way that they could have found her was with help from one James Potter and his map. Damn him.
Both Lily and Christine had their arms crossed and were dressed for the party, as it had started ten minutes ago. “Can you two just drop it and go – I’ll show up later if I feel like it.”
The two ‘honorary gingers’ exchanged glances, “Are you going to shower first?” Christine asked.
“I’m going to curse you first, and Lily second, if you don’t get out of my face and let me read my fucking book!” Adara practically growled at them.
“Fine, have your way then – but don’t say we didn’t try,” Lily huffed. “Come on Christine, if she wants to sit her and be moody all night we don’t want her at the party anyway.”
“Too true,” Christine agreed and they turned and walked away.
The nerve! Adara fingered her wand in her pocket… two quick spells and they’d be sorry… She sighed, why had she wanted Christine and the Gryffindors to get along again? Adara had definitely decided she liked it better when they didn’t know each other and therefore could not gang up on her.
Damn ginger best mates.
She turned back to her book and tried to immerse herself in the world of … what was she reading, anyway? Oh, right, a book on potions – she really was getting desperate.
She slammed the book shut and stood up. Returning the book to it’s proper self, she wandered out of the library and made her way back to the Ravenclaw common room, thinking about the awful apparation lessons they had been given earlier in the day.
No one had managed to do anything, really. Though apparently this teacher didn’t know how to teach yet. Kept muttering something about three D words…
When she finally reached the common room, she saw stood looking at the fire for a minute before making her way up to the dorms. As soon as she entered her own dorm she saw an outfit laid out on her bed. She rolled her eyes and walked over to her bed, Wear this! Christine had written. She took the note and the clothes and pushed them on the clothes before sitting down and staring out the window. Tomorrow night was full moon, which she remembered James talking about earlier in the week. She hoped that everything went okay…
She didn’t really know how long she sat there just thinking about Sirius and James and Sirius and Remus and Sirius before she got up and went to take a shower.
I’ll just show up and see what’d going on. Say ‘hi’ to James so he won’t be upset that I missed the party he set up…
When she stepped out of the shower, she dried her hair with her wand and actually spent time fixing it for the first time in nearly a week. Might as well look presentable.
She pulled on the clothes Christine had laid out, mainly because she didn’t feel like digging through her trunk to find anything else, and stopped to look at herself in the mirror before she left.
Her eyes looked dead. She applied a bit of eyeliner and mascara, but it didn’t really help. It was something about her actual eyes – they were dull, uncaring. With a jolt she realized that she reminded herself of James when he was moping over Lily. Only, she admitted, she looked worse.
Deciding there was really nothing she could presently do about it, she stuck her wand in her back pocket and left the dorm. Making her way to the room of requirement she began to feel more and more stupid. By the time she made it she had all but convinced herself to turn around.
However, just as she was about to leave, James opened the door and smiled down at her, “I knew you’d be here, Addie,” he grinned.
Adara tried to smile back at him as he grabbed her hand and pulled in into the room. It was huge, just like with Lily’s party, only there were more couches and tables and a larger dance floor. It was truly extravagant. And the people! There were so many people there, it was as if all of Hogwarts had attended.
“There are a ton of people here, James,” Adara pointed out dumbly.
“We’re popular people,” James winked at her and Adara rolled her eyes. The music, which had been in the middle of changing songs, began booming loudly again with an upbeat tune that had the dance floor covered with people within seconds. “Dance with me!” James yelled at her over the music.
“What?” Adara yelled back.
“Dance!” James pulled her towards the dance floor.
“No! No, I don’t think that this is such a good id –” she was silenced as James pulled her to him and began dancing crazily.
“Come on, dance; you look stupid just standing there,” James said into her ear.
“I don’t want to,” Adara whined.
“I don’t care,” James said simply and put his hands on her waist and began to ‘help’ her dance.
“James!” Adara yelled at him, but upon seeing the childish look on his face, laughed a little and began dancing with him. “Fine.”
“That’s the ticket,” James nodded. They danced wildly and probably badly together for two songs until Adara was sure she was about to fall over from lack of sleep combined with physical exertion. Just as she was about to ask if they could take a drink, the song changed to a slow one and James grinned at her, pulling her close.
“You’re crazy,” Adara told him, pulling away.
“Come on,” James whined. “If Lily won’t dance with me, I want to dance with one of my mates!”
Adara sighed but wrapped her arms around his neck, “I don’t even know why I’m here, James.”
“You’re having fun!”
Adara didn’t answer, but stared at her arms or really at anything but James’ face.
“Mind if I cut in?” asked a very familiar voice. Adara’s head shot up and she blushed as she saw Sirius, looking fantastic in a tight black shirt and jeans. She looked up at his face and saw that he, like her, had dead-looking eyes. Though now, they were sparked with something she couldn’t name.
“Not at all, mate,” James grinned and let go of Adara’s waist. Adara didn’t even bother sending him a glare, as she couldn’t take her eyes off of Sirius. He looked so broken, but put together at the same time. He was beautiful. Surely she hadn’t forgotten how beautiful he was? But here she was just as amazed as ever at the pure beauty of the man standing in front of her.
Sirius stepped forward and wrapped his strong arms around Adara’s waist and she nearly melted into a puddle right there on the dance floor. She stiffened and managed to remember to put her arms around him.
He was staring at her. Taking in her face, her hair, her lips, her eyes, her nose… it was like he was trying to memorize her for the last time; Adara felt unnerved by it. The awkwardness set in and she looked away, trying not to cry now that she was in his arms again.
“You look good tonight,” Sirius said huskily, trying to ease the situation.
Adara snorted in disbelief, “I don’t. But thanks.” Silence crept in again, only filled by the song. It seemed to last forever. Adara looked back at Sirius. Really looked at him.
“Happy Birthday,” she said quietly.
“Not really,” he answered. “But thanks.”
Silence, again. They swayed on the spot – why was this song so long? What would happen when it was over?
“I’m sorry I don’t have a present for you,” she told him, trying to break the tension somehow.
“You’re all I want, actually,” he said after a minute. Adara looked away again, and felt a tear escape. “I can’t do this, sorry,” she stole away from Sirius and the dance floor. She passed a shell-shocked James dancing with a caring-looking Lily as she slipped out of the room of requirement.
She made it halfway down the corridor before she just couldn’t walk any farther. She slipped down the wall and wrapped her arms around her knees and she cried. She shouldn’t have tried to go to the party. She shouldn’t have said that thing about his family. She shouldn’t have slapped him.
She should have expected that he would follow her this time.
“Adara,” he whispered as he sat down at her feet on the cold ground.
Adara looked up and wiped her eyes, probably smearing mascara everywhere. She shouldn’t have worn mascara.
“I’m sorry.” He told her. “I’m so terribly sorry. I overreacted when I saw you with James and I overreacted up in the tower.” He put his hands on her knees, “I know that you and James wouldn’t ever do anything – hell, I know that you wouldn’t cheat on me at all. I do trust you, though I don’t see how you can believe that now.” he reached up with one hand and moved her hair. “I love you Adara, and I really, really hate fighting with you.”
Adara looked at him, tears running down her face, “I love you,” she said and allowed herself to be pulled into his arms. She leaned into his chest and felt him rest his chin on her head as he wrapped his arms around her tightly. “I know you do, ‘Dara,” Sirius said.
“I didn’t mean that about your family at all, Sirius. I know you’re not like them, I know…” she trailed off as she moved her hands from around her own knees and wrapped them around Sirius’ waist.
“I’m sorry that they’ve caused you so much trouble, I’m sorry that I’m so bad for you, I’m sorry,” Sirius kept saying.
“No, shh. Stop apologizing, damnit. You’re making me feel terrible,” she pulled away from him and looked into his face again. She saw that he was tearing up and felt a stab pierce her heart. She never wanted to see him so sad. “I’m the one that slapped you,” she said and brought a hand up to caress the cheek she’d assaulted. “We both overreacted. I wish you’d listened to me – I was trying to talk to James about what to get you for your birthday. And here I am, and I have nothing and we’re both upset.”
“Adara, I know you weren’t doing anything with James – I was being so stupid,” Sirius whispered.
“Yes you were,” Adara grinned at him. “But I’m still crazy about you.”
“I love you, Adara Moore.”
“I love you, Sirius Black,” Adara said. And then she kissed him for the first time in nearly a week. “I wish I’d gotten you something,” she whispered when they broke apart minutes later.
Sirius chuckled, “You did, silly.”
And then he kissed her again.
A/N: Okay, so I figured it out. There are going to be forty chapters. I haven't decided if this will include the epilogue or not, but forty will be the last actual chapter, if not the epilogue. I hope that this isn't getting too uninteresting or whatever. I hope it's not dragging on and on and on... I hope you still enjoying reading and whatnot. Sorry about the long wait, guys. I really appreicate all of the reviews I get! Please continue to review so I know that I still have some people who like this story :].
Over and outt.
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