Chapter 25 : Honesty and Owners
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We're only two chapters away from the end, you guys!! Can you believe it? Hell, I write this stuff and I can't believe it!! It is just so surreal! And Deja Vu has already hit 15,000 reads no problem with the last chapter! And we've got over 260 reviews! Give yourselves a pat on the back because you lot are the best readers I could ask for! :D I never though it would get this big.
I'd like to dedicate this chapter to everyone who has favorited this story. You guys are amazing, truly. You started it off. I remember when the story only had two favorites and now that number's at 128. All of you are amazing and I love you.
This chapter is also dedicated to everyone who has me on their favorite authors list!! I didn't even know I was on anyone's favorite author's list and I saw yesterday that ten people added me. TEN. Thanks you guys, you're too kind.
Thanks to emmapotter for betaing this chapter. She's brilliant, folks :D
Oh and happy April Fool's day :D I hope you like the chapter!!
I froze but not for long.
Not for nearly long enough.
His lips felt soft against mine, not demanding or pushing. Just there for me to feel.
Soft and warm.
Maybe it was because he caught me off guard or maybe it was because he was just so gentle.
Either way, that’s when I kissed him back.
And then it was his turn to freeze, though only for a second. He seemed almost as surprised as me, that I was actually kissing him, but he recovered quickly. One hand slipped to my waist, while the other continued to rest against the door. He pulled me closer to him, so that my body was right up against his, sending sparks of heat flying across my skin. My hands moved up to rest against his chest, and his mouth moved more fluidly over mine at the contact. His other hand moved to cup my face, stroking my jaw line with his thumb, and I sighed, shivers running down my spine with pleasure. He used the moment to his advantage, slipping his tongue into my mouth, slowly exploring me and I melted against him as he kissed me.
So this was what it was like to be kissed by James Potter.
For once, the gossips were right.
My hands slipped up his torso, to the back of his neck, playing with the ends of his hairs. His hand tangled itself in my damp hair as he kissed me, his palm pressing into my back. I raked my nails against the skin on the back of his neck, subconsciously asking him to keep doing what he was doing. He groaned against my lips and pushed me back against the door, his mouth never leaving mine.
His breath was my breath, his lips were my lips.
My stomach was churning in a very pleasant yet unpleasant way and my heart might as well have stopped beating.
I was kissing James Potter.
I was kissing James Potter.
In his room.
After his birthday party.
After his birthday party that my boyfriend didn’t come to.
My boyfriend didn’t come to.
I pushed James away from me, and he staggered back. He looked confused and, for a moment, hurt. But I must have imagined it, because the next second, he just looked confused. He was about to open his mouth to speak, no doubt to ask me what the matter was, but I held up a hand to silence him. He shut his mouth and his expression turned impassive.
Go on Aidan, make my day. What exactly is this?
“This is… a mistake.”
Brilliance. That’s what that answer was.
“I’m in a relationship, James.” I said, trying to keep my voice steady, quite a task, let me add, with my breath shuddering its way in and out of my lungs. “I have been for a while now and I can’t… I’m not the kind of girl who cheats on her boyfriend. I refuse to be.”
“Aidan,” he took a step forwards. “I –”
“No, James, it’s alright. Don’t say anything. We…we both had a lot to drink. This is nothing. Just a moment of weakness, that’s all. It’s my fault, I should have never let it go as far as it did. I’m sorry. Just…please don’t tell anyone.”
He looked very troubled as he took all of this in.
“Of course I won’t but Aidan, I’m…” he faltered as I watched him expectantly. “I…”
I waited for him to speak, but he couldn’t bring himself to. The hand that he’d been holding out to me fell to his side and he closed his eyes, shaking his head. I took that to be the end of it.
“I’m sorry.” I whispered one last time, and he nodded.
“No, that’s okay. You’re right. We did have a lot to drink. It’s like you said. It was a moment of weakness.”
He looked into my eyes then. “Nothing more… right?”
No, it meant everything! It meant everything! I’m lying, can’t you tell? Can’t you –
I silenced the voice in my head by clamping down on it. I wouldn’t allow myself to think of that. So what if I was lying? It hardly mattered. I was right; I knew I was. It meant nothing. James had been known to make out with random girls after a night of heavy drinking. It did mean nothing. My feelings… they didn’t matter. Not after what I’d done. I just cheated on my boyfriend. If I was in a different country, I’d be dragged down the street by cattle before I was tarred and feathered.
I maintained eye contact, trying not to let my resolve crumble. I was struggling and eventually I lost. I couldn’t do it, I couldn’t look him dead in the eye. Yes, I was a coward. I could deal with that. I just needed to get out of there.
“Nothing more.” I reiterated. “I’ll… I’ll see you later, James.”
With that said, I left, closing the door behind me.
As I fled down the corridor, I heard the unmistakable thud of a fist slamming against a door.
“Sweetheart, can I come in?”
I pushed my hair away from my face and into a ponytail before I answered. “Yeah.”
The door to my room creaked open, and mum entered, a tray hovering in front of her. She smiled at me warmly and closed the door behind her gently. She sat down near the foot of the bed, placing the tray between us and I had the sudden urge to laugh. Mum always thought that tea would make life seem all better. If it was up to her, she’d have it included in Potions books as the cure to sadness. Ironically, since she did research in that field for a living, it might actually have been up to her, so I was a tad surprised that wizarding Britain wasn’t singing the praises of tea yet. She’d also included a plate full of scones and raspberry and mint jam, which she made especially for me, seeing as how everyone else in the family had an unhealthy fascination with blueberries.
Mum was surveying me closely, that smile still on her beautiful face. She was in her work robes, so I figured she must’ve just gotten back. I hadn’t been keeping very good track of time in the past week. Time, I found, wasn’t really required for the purposes of reading and avoiding people, which was all that I’d been doing really. The day that ‘It’ happened, I hadn’t slept. I had packed up my things almost immediately, and had rushed downstairs, where Fred and Louis had fallen asleep. I had tried not to make too much noise as I threw a handful of Floo powder into the fireplace, and made my way home. No one had been awake yet, and for that, I was grateful. I’d made my way upstairs to my room and slept.
I woke up, more than 24 hours later, to an empty house.
Mum and Dad were at work and Landon had left the day before to go to Paris, a trip that he and Sasha had had planned for weeks. There were plenty of letters waiting on my bedside table that must have arrived while I slept, and still mum and dad hadn’t woken me up. I supposed that was Landon’s doing. He always could tell when I needed time to myself. There were 18 letters in total. 7 were from Rose, five from Albus, 3 from Mona, 2 from Lily and 1 from Henry.
None from James.
I hadn’t expected there to be.
Since that first day, I had stayed in my room. I read - a lot.
I had made my way through most of my books, re-reading old, comforting favourites, the ones that transported you to a world different from your own. That was exactly what I needed. If I had read a good book and was in a brave mood (I found myself in a brave mood as I read through the Narnia series) I would join my parents for meals. I had to give them due credit. Except for putting letters on my bedside table and bringing me meals, they didn’t bother me. Only thrice, had they tried to make me contact the civilized world and all three times were when Henry had apparently tried to contact me through the living room fire, scaring the living daylights out of dad. I had a feeling dad wasn’t warming up to Henry simply for this reason. I still didn’t write Henry, or Floo over or anything. I didn’t write back to anyone actually.
The official reason was that I needed to think. I wasn’t doing much introspection though since I was being a complete chicken shit, escaping into stories like Jane Eyre, Anna Karenina and, strangely, romance novels by Sophie Kinsella and Nicholas Sparks. But that was the official reason, and I was sticking to it.
I had done some thinking though. Those moments right before I fell asleep were far too clear and lucid for my liking. And the only feelings that registered in those brief moments were of crushing guilt and useless regret. I had cheated on my boyfriend, perhaps one of the biggest and most handsome celebrities in the wizarding world, a guy who cared about me more than I deserved, and was nicer than it was truly possible and sweet. I had cheated on him with my best friend’s brother, the son of the saviour of the effing wizarding world.
I felt immeasurable guilt.
I’d always looked down on people who cheated on their boyfriends, or who helped other people cheat on their girlfriends. I had always thought that there was no excuse for such actions and, here I was, one of those people that I had judged so fervently. I had not realized and not even come close to thinking about what drove people to it. In my mind, the idea of cheating on someone had been this well thought out and evil plan made by bad people. Being on the other side, I realized it hadn’t been like that at all.
It had been fast, impulsive. Thought hadn’t even entered the picture until later. I realized that kissing James wasn’t why I felt guilty at all, although I still felt plenty guilty about that. The real reason that I was disgusted with myself was the thought that had entered my mind when I had run into my room after ‘It’ had happened and the thought that spilled into my dreams sometimes, torturing me. And that thought was that that one kiss with James had perhaps contained more free, unfettered passion than all of my kisses with Henry combined…except for the first kiss with Henry, the only one that maybe matched up to my kiss with James.
Had I given up on Henry when James had started making an effort to get to know Henry for me?
Was that what had happened?
Probably, it certainly seemed like it. No matter what it had all been about, I had made a mistake. This was all my fault and I didn’t know what to do. I couldn’t take it back…and, for some reason, I didn’t want to.
I hated to think that I regretted that kiss. No, I didn’t regret it at all. That dark heated moment with James as we fumbled in the darkness of his room was perhaps the one moment with him that I’d never be able to forget. What I regretted was never having moments like that again. What I really regretted was that James probably didn’t care one lick about what had happened and had probably moved on. That was what I regretted and this only caused me more guilt.
Yeah, that’s how much I thought in the few moments before I went to sleep. Can you imagine what it would have been like if I hadn’t tuned out?
I refocused on my mum; whose eyes showed the mingled concern and curiosity, that Landon said was often mirrored in my own eyes. When I had turned 16, dad had been quick to remind me that I looked extraordinarily like my mother. I realized then, what a compliment it was, since my mum, even though she was tired from work, looked like the most beautiful woman ever. She aged rather well. You’d never be able to guess that she was nearing 50.
She handed me a cup of tea, which I took with a small, but grateful smile. She mixed in a spoon of sugar and two spoons of cream, just the way we both liked it, before she picked her own cup up. We sipped our tea in comfortable silence, and I realized that it had been almost a year since we shared a quiet moment to ourselves like this. I realized that, in another year, I’d be done with school and possibly moving out of mum and dad’s. That thought made me feel even more guilt, if that was possible, about avoiding my parents over the past week and a half.
Mum drained her tea and placed the cup and saucer back on the tray before she picked up a scone. She bit into it and started chewing it thoughtfully before she swallowed and turned to me with a sigh.
“Alright then, love. What happened?” she asked.
“Mum, I don’t want to talk about it to be hon –”
She cut across me in a millisecond. “If I thought leaving you to mope and stew would help, I would. But, love, you are a lot like your father beneath the surface, you don’t talk about things and the bad thoughts start festering in there like unwanted garden gnomes.” I gave her a sceptical look and she reached out to pat my knee comfortingly. “Let’s have it, love. I promise I won’t interrupt you. I’ll just listen. And if I feel like I have helpful advice at the end I might just share but that’s it, I promise.”
She looked so hopeful that it made me want to laugh. But I just gave a huge, exaggerated and, dare I say, dramatic sigh instead. “Okay…but you won’t like it.” I said and she just waved it away, gesturing for me to continue. “Do you want the abridged version or the whole shebang?”
“I have all the time in the world.” she smiled encouragingly at me, and I sighed once more.
I told her everything, everything from the beginning of the school year all the way to what happened just a little over a week ago. Mum didn’t say much. She did ‘ooh’ and ‘aah’ at appropriate places, as well as clap in certain other places, but as far as words went, she kept it to a minimum. I skipped some details of course, but left the story as it was for the most part.
I was surprised that talking to mum made me feel lighter. It was the kind of levity I felt when talking to Landon and, I realized, that I had spent so much time confiding in the person in my family who was closer to my own age, I had forgotten that he must have gotten his listening skills from somewhere.
“Well, love, you’ve gotten yourself into a bit of a mess, haven’t you?” she asked, mirth gleaming in her eyes.
I narrowed my eyes at her.
“You don’t say.” I deadpanned and she laughed.
Her unbridled laughter was infectious, and soon I was laughing with her. She banished the tray to the kitchen and pulled me into a warm, mum hug, the kind that only mothers seem to be able to give, packed with so much love, care and affection that all of your problems seem like distant memories. I sighed as I rested my head on her shoulder, my smile melting away.
“Oh mum. What am I going to do?” I asked, my voice sounding small, even to me.
Mum pulled away from me, continuing to stroke my hair as she looked into my eyes with her own. She smiled sympathetically.
“Sweetheart, I remember when I was your age. Every little thing seemed like the end of the world to me. I’ll admit, what you’re going through is a little more difficult than my problems which mostly centred around a bad hair day. I had things relatively easy with your father. I never had doubts once I met him whether I was with the right person. You really seem to have it more complicated than I did.” She paused as she saw the look in my face which told her that she wasn’t making me feel any better.
“But you’re a stronger person and much more mature than I was at your age. You’ve always made smart decisions and I know you’ll do it again. I’m glad you told me all this but I’m afraid I can’t tell you what to do. You’ll figure it out on your own and one day, you’ll look back and feel proud of yourself for doing so. I won’t take that accomplishment away from you. For now, I think the smartest course of action would be to get in touch with your mates again. Let them know you’re still alive and so on. And then, preferably soon, I think you should get in touch with Henry.”
I mulled this over as she stroked my hair and, finally, nodded. Mum was right. I’d take this one step at a time. Slowly, I’d figure this all out myself. I’d gotten myself into this so logic dictated that I could get myself out, right? Right. I convinced myself before I smiled at my mother.
“Oh, it was nothing, darling. It’s nice to know that you still need your mommy sometimes.” She flashed me a grin and I grinned back.
Just then, the door banged open and mum nearly fell off the bed in shock. My dad was standing there in his own work robes with a determined look on his face.
“That’s it, Aidan Capricia Briars! No daughter of mine will sulk around all day and avoid her –” dad caught sight of me and mum and stopped. “What are you doing here?”
“I got here first.” Mum supplied with a smirk.
“That is not fair at all! I never get to give motivational speeches!” whined Dad as he walked over to sit on the bed, huffing grumpily.
“That’s not true! You gave one to Landon when he first did magic.” Pointed out Mum and Dad gave her a cold look.
“He was three.” I started laughing and dad started pouting.
“Oh, sweetheart, I promise you can give the next one. You should really step up your game, though. I always beat you at this.” Mum grinned at him and dad rolled his eyes.
“Oh alright wise one, I’ll make sure I – Aidan, honey, where are you going?”
I hopped off my bed and grabbed my towel and some fresh clothes. I turned back to my parents.
“I’m going to go talk to my mates and, when I get back, I’m making dinner. How’s that sound?” I asked. Mum smiled at me and Dad grinned as he slung his arm around her.
“Sounds great.” replied Dad. I grinned at them both before I slipped out of my room.
“We did good as far as the kids go, didn’t we?” I heard mum ask dad.
“We really did. Why, d’you want to have more?”
“I don’t mind trying. Come here, you handsome –”
“Don’t you dare do anything on my bed!” I yelled right before I slammed the bathroom door shut, hearing my parents’ laughter echo in the house.
“Could he tell that something was off with you?” Mona asked with wide eyes, as she sipped her milkshake and Rose rolled her eyes.
“His girlfriend disappeared off the face of the planet for a solid week. Of course he noticed!” she exclaimed incredulously, before she turned to me. “What did he say?”
I shrugged. “He didn’t get mad. Said that he understood that something had happened, and that I could take my time telling him and that I could talk to him about it whenever I was ready.”
I stirred my ice cream soda with my straw in silence, remembering back to that conversation. Henry had been very surprised to see me at the Headquarters of WWN just a few hours ago. But he had also seemed very happy. He insisted that he had been worried, but had a feeling that I had a reason for avoiding him like the plague. He hadn’t taken it personally, apparently. I suppose he shouldn’t since I had been avoiding everyone and not just him.
“That’s… really understanding of him.” Rose said tentatively.
“Yeah, that’s really….” Mona took a very long pause…so long that Rose and I both turned to stare at her as she struggled to find a word. “Nice?” she finished.
“I guess…” I trailed off, not really knowing what to say.
There was a brief silence until Rose just couldn’t contain it.
“Why is he so nice? And so understanding? I mean, Scorpius would have burst in through the door to smack me to my senses within three days!” Rose exclaimed.
“But you and Scorpius have been together longer, haven’t you? You know each other backward and forwards! Henry and Aidan haven’t spent nearly as much time together. They barely saw each other when we were at school! Maybe he just…didn’t want to push her because he doesn’t know how she’ll react, you know? Prentice played it safe for ages when we first started seeing each other!” Mona defended. She’d always been a big supporter of camp Henry.
“That’s true but…he’s a bit…too nice, you know?” I asked, looking from one to the other. “I mean, sometimes I wish that he’d call me on my bullshit and get mad at me for being a complete idiot!” I threw up my hands in frustration. “Sometimes I hate that he’s so calm and patient! I mean, I feel like telling him the truth, just so I’ll get a rise out of him!”
“No!” Yelled Mona and Rose together, startling people at the tables around ours.
“Down, girls.” I hissed, my eyes wide.
“She wanted to bleach her hair.” Mona explained to the people at the table next to ours, as she pointed at me. The girl in the couple nodded her understanding.
“You really shouldn’t! Your hair is lovely! It brings out your eyes.” the girl said sincerely.
“Um, thanks.” I replied awkwardly and she smiled before she turned back to her boyfriend.
Ah, the universal language of Witch Weekly that brings witches from all walks of life together.
“We’re sorry, we just…” Rose pinched the bridge of her nose as she thought for a second. “We just don’t think you should tell Henry to make him angry, you know?”
Mona nodded her agreement. “If you were ever to tell him what happened with James, you should tell him because you want to be honest with him, not to spite him.”
I looked from one to the other. “But you do think I should tell him.”
“Yes.” they said in unison.
I groaned and let my head fall into my arms on the table. Rose leaned over and rubbed circles on my back soothingly. That was one conversation that I wasn’t looking forward to having. But I knew I’d have to do it. I prided myself on being honest about things that mattered and as much as I didn’t want to do it, I’d tell Henry the truth, even though it might end our relationship.
I lifted my head off the table, rubbing my eyes with the palms of my hand. “I guess that I’ll have to, huh?” They both nodded sympathetically.
“How long are you going to take with that, then?” asked Mona quietly.
“It took you 5 days just to get yourself to talk to him after you came to us.” Rose pointed out and I sighed.
“I don’t know. I don’t know how long it’ll take but I’ll do it, I promise.” I assured both of them and they nodded.
“You know we’re not saying this to make you miserable right?” asked Mona worriedly.
Rose nodded. “It’s just that, we –”
“It’s ok you guys.” I cut in. “You’re just being good mates. I understand.”
“Okay…” said Mona.
“Let’s change the subject.” Rose said quickly. “My birthday’s coming up!”
“I know! Less than a week left now. You’re going to turn 17! Are you excited?” I asked, trying to distract myself.
That was one of the reasons why Rose had owled me so much while I was in my state of catatonia, we had always organized each other’s parties since we had turned 12-when the party comprised of cutting cake with friends and having a sleepover. Rose’s birthday was on the 24th, only 6 days away, and ever since I’d gotten back to normal some days back, I had been busy putting everything together. It would turn out great, I knew. The colour theme was the only thing that Rose had chosen (red and silver, if you’re wondering… I couldn’t help but think that the silver was Scorpius’ influence) and everything else was left to me and Mona, the queen of decorations.
The venue for the party was smaller than that of James’.
God, just thinking about his name was making me flinch.
Anyway, Rose had decided that she wanted to have her 17th at her own home which, being just as big as Harry and Ginny’s, had a pretty cool ballroom that we could use. Scorpius had originally offered to hold the party at his own place, but Mona and I made up an excuse to keep it at Rose’s since we figured Ron might have a heart attack if his little’s girl’s 17th birthday party was held at Draco Malfoy’s house. It’s not how we saw it but we didn’t want any problems. Scorpius, being rather smart, probably understood why we had declined his offer.
“I hate to burst your bubble and all, but it’s a bit of a letdown. The only good thing about it is you get to drink legally in wizarding London. They still turn you down in muggle pubs.” Mona said monotonously.
Rose and I exchanged amused glances.
“And I suppose doing magic out of school is insignificant?” I asked and Mona shrugged.
“Big whoop. I barely need to use it since I’ve gotten so used to life outside school without it. I took the tube to go see Prentice the other day, just because I forgot I could apparate now.”
She had passed her Apparition test back in March following the crap lessons that we’d only gone to three times. We’d already done side along plenty of times and Rose had hammered the theory into our heads so badly that it only took us three classes to master it.
“Hardly matters about how useful it turns out! A birthday is a birthday, no matter how insignificant and it’s worth celebrating!” I said fervently.
“And it’s an excuse to get people to do whatever I want and I get tons of presents! You know how huge my family is, right?” giggled Rose.
“No, Rose, we didn’t. Please do tell us!” Mona clapped her hands together in mock excitement.
“Well, it all started with Granddad not being able to keep it in his pants around Nana Weasley,” Rose started casually. “So one day they were having lunch at Nana’s house and they started going at it like rabbits in Nana’s parents’ room –”
“Rose, ew! Shut up!” I yelled, chucking a rolled up tissue at her.
“I’m not listening, I’m not listening!” Mona cried, covering her ears.
“Great, you just scarred Mona for life!” I chided.
Rose burst into laughter and we started laughing with her. I had missed my friends, more than I could say.
“Hey, you lot!”
I whipped around and grinned.
“Hey Al!” we all chorused and he gave us all a look as he took a seat beside me.
“Have you three been practicing that?” he asked as he grabbed Rose’s sundae.
“You could tell? Good, I knew we were getting better!” Rose mused with a smile.
“What are you lot talking about then?” he took a bite of the sundae and stared at the sundae contemplatively. “This is really good…” he shrugged and started digging in.
Rose smirked. “Well, we were discussing how big our family was and how Nana and Granddad –”
“We were talking about her birthday.” Mona said, cutting across Rose firmly.
Albus looked from Mona to Rose. “Do I want to know?” he asked, turning to me and I shook my head.
“I don’t think you do.” I grinned at him and he smiled.
“I’ll take your word for it. Guess what I just saw at Quality Quidditch?” Rose, Mona and I exchanged glances before turning back to him.
“What?” we asked together, and he raised an eyebrow.
“You really are getting good at that. It’s a bit creepy. Anyway, this,” Al lifted himself off of the chair for a second to pull out a magazine from his back pocket. He tossed it onto the table before he sat back down and took another bite of the sundae. “Is what I saw.”
I was the closest so I grabbed the magazine, Rose and Mona shifting their chairs closer to mine to get a look. I rolled out the magazine and the three of us gasped collectively.
“Seriously, stop that.” Al said, looking more than a little disturbed as he stared at us, but we paid him no mind.
It was the latest copy of Quidditch Quarterly and James Potter was gracing the cover. He was wearing the sky blue Tutshill Tornadoes uniform as he flew on his broom, which I noticed had been upgraded from the gold series Firebolt to the platinum series. He scored a goal before taking a swift turn to face the camera and grin. Just seeing that grin made me feel faint and this was only an effing picture. He ruffled his hair and winked at the camera before he flew off. I searched for the title of the article about him and it jumped out to me with its bold sky blue letters, proclaiming: ‘JAMES POTTER OF THE TUTSHILL TORNADOES READY TO TAKE THE QUIDDITCH WORLD BY STORM’. It was on Page 27.
Rose grabbed the magazine and flipped through the pages quickly until she got to 27. She laid the magazine flat on the table so the three of us could read it. The three of us leaned in close to read as Al watched for our reactions.
To anyone who had not attended the Quidditch cup finals at Hogwarts this year which, let’s be honest, means most people in the Wizarding world, the announcement on the 16th of June by Bethany Meyer, owner of the Tutshill Tornadoes, came as quite a shock. Ms. Meyer hinted, in not so many words, that the Chaser position that had been needed to be filled after the retirement of Alfred Till had been given to an amateur player, fresh out of Hogwarts. Little did we all know, that that amateur player happened to be the son of the wizarding world’s saviour.
You heard it here first, folks.
Harry Potter’s eldest son, James Sirius Potter, has joined the ranks of the Tornadoes and will be playing his first match against the Wimbourne Wasps in a little more than a week’s time.
Potter was spotted by a talent scout during the Quidditch cup finals held at Hogwarts. The scout, word has it, had been tipped off by Frederick Weasley (who, just in case you’ve been living under a rock your whole life, is the son of George Weasley of Weasleys Wizarding Wheezes fame, as well as James’ cousin and fellow chaser) who thought that James showed great promise as a professional Quidditch player.
Lucky for Mr. Potter that Ms. Meyer, who had acquired the team after her father’s death last year, happened to agree and she arranged a meeting with the young man less than a week after he completed his magical education.
One would have thought that Potter would have signed on as quickly as possible, seeing how the team hasn’t played a game since April, but Potter insisted on joining the team only after he completed his seventh and final year at Hogwarts. Hat’s off to Harry Potter for teaching his son the value of an education.
As of now, James Potter hasn’t given any interviews, most probably at the orders of Ms. Meyer. The team, we are told, is training hard and fast for the upcoming match and Meyer doesn’t want the rookie to be distracted. But we are told all this secrecy will end as soon as the match is out of the way.
Let’s hope so because we can’t wait to sink our teeth into the rather delicious James Potter.
I leaned back as soon as I finished reading. Rose and Mona soon followed suit. Albus was watching for my reaction carefully but he needn’t have worried. This didn’t upset me in the least. If anything, I was happy for James. He, unlike me, had so much going on in his life that he had an excuse, not to think about certain events.
I had heard from both Albus and Rose that he had been very busy training with the team since his first match was going to be on the day after Rose’s birthday. The team manager and owner had officially announced his contract with the Tornadoes and there was a flurry of activity concerning James. People were looking forward to seeing what the Chosen One’s eldest son could do.
“That’s the third article, isn’t it?” Mona asked and Al nodded.
“Yeah. Mum had heard that this came out yesterday so she asked me to pick it up since I was coming here to see you guys anyway. I bet she’s going to save every single article about James’ career.” Al rolled his eyes but we could all tell that he was proud of his brother, despite the past events.
I had told Albus what had happened. After the initial reaction, (“I’m going to kill him! What the fuck was he thinking, doing that?”) Al had gotten over it. I had explained that it was as much my fault as James’, if not more so. Al still thought it was very immoral of James to kiss me, knowing that I was taken, but I told Al the same thing I had told James. A moment of weakness. On both our parts. Al had been very forgiving and hadn’t judged me in the least. I loved him for that. He never failed to remind me why he was my best mate.
“Well, there’ll be plenty of those coming up so get ready to do a whole lot of running around this summer, Al.” commented Rose.
“I know.” Albus moaned, as he licked the last of the sundae off his spoon. “Why is it so hard to be a part of my family?”
“I’ve been asking myself that question since I was 4.” Rose remarked drily.
“You know I thought I had it bad, but you lot really have a lot to live up to, don’t you?” Mona noted and Rose and Al nodded.
“Oh, yeah; we’ve got Aurors, curse breakers, Unspeakables, Quidditch players, models, writers, broomstick designers…You name it, we have it.” Rose was speaking as if she was advertising her family, right before she rolled her eyes.
“Sucks to be you, doesn’t it?” I joked and we all laughed. Everyone knew that no one hated being a part of their family.
As Mona, Al and Rose chatted away about Rose’s upcoming party, I drifted off into my thought, my eyes on James on the cover of the magazine in front of me. James was finally on his way. He was going to become a Quidditch star. He was going to get everything he’d worked so hard for. I might not be speaking to him at that moment but I was thrilled for him. He deserved this, he really did. But then a new thought filled me with panic.
James would come to Rose’s birthday, no matter what. He could be stuck in the bloody Amazon forest without a wand and he’d still come. And I would have to face him then. I wasn’t looking forward to it. Missing Rosie’s birthday wasn’t an option for James but, cruel though it may be, I sincerely hoped it was. It was hard enough seeing James smile at me from the cover of Quidditch Quarterly, I didn’t think I’d be able to handle that smile in person. I was hoping, to be honest, for a miracle…or a case of dragon pox to keep me bedridden. At that point in time, anything would do.
“Shit, shit, shit!” I whispered, wringing my hands together until Albus covered them with his own.
“Oy, listen to me. Breathe, okay? Calm down.” His voice was soothing (a lot like his dad’s I noticed), but it didn’t help me calm down at all.
“They’re talking to each other, Al! They’re talking to each other!” I hissed. “Why are they talking to each other?” I peeked over my shoulder and immediately covered my eyes, regretting the action.
“They do know each other, Aidan. You introduced them, remember?” he said sarcastically and I gave him a look. “Right, sorry. Listen, I bet they’re just catching up. They don’t look like they’re discussing anything serious. They’re laughing…well, Henry is anyway; James looks like he’s trying to laugh but seems to be grimacing his way to his death.” Al noted, looking over my shoulder. “I don’t think James will tell him anything.”
“You sure?” I asked, trying to inhale deeply. Al put his arms around me and pulled me into a hug.
“Yes, I’m positive, alright? Just relax. It’s going to be fine.” He rubbed my back as he held me close.
I couldn’t help but compare his hugs to James’. I found that I liked both in their own ways. Al’s hugs calmed me down while James’ hugs… I didn’t want to think about them.
“Have they stopped talking to each other yet?” I mumbled.
“Nope.” He answered, his voice muffled.
“Is that why you’re not letting go of me?”
“You can let go of me, Al. I can handle it.”
“Okay then.” Al pulled away from me cautiously and I took a deep breath before I turned around to face the bar, where James and Henry were standing as they nursed their drinks. I turned back around and hugged Al.
“I can’t handle it. My mistake.” I said frantically.
Al chuckled as he hugged me.
I felt safe with my best mate. He had always taken care of me in ways that I couldn’t quite describe to anyone. It was the kind of protection that Landon provided; subtle yet powerful. Ever since I was 11, Al had kept me away from things that would hurt me, but had let me go when he knew I could face them on my own. It’s the thing I loved about him. His strength, his loyalty, his friendship. I’d said it before and I would say it again: thank god for Albus Potter.
“Albus, let her go.” My eyes snapped open and I groaned.
Can’t I get a break?
“Rose, she’s –” Al fell quiet, no doubt at the glare he was receiving. He withdrew his arms from me and turned me around to face my other best mate.
“You better grow a backbone and soon Aidan Briars. I did not call my best mate for my birthday party so she could hide from everyone, including her own bloody boyfriend!” Rose’s voice was low and dangerous and I knew better than to argue with her when she was using that tone.
“Okay.” I said timidly. She gave me a look before she sighed.
“I know you’re worried, okay, but the party’s almost over. Barely an hour left now. Just trudge through it and then you and Henry can leave.” she said kindly. I nodded and threw my arms around her.
“I’m so sorry, Rosie. I didn’t mean to ruin your birthday.” I murmured and she laughed.
“Don’t be an idiot! It’s been the best day of my life, because of you!” she pulled away and kissed my cheek. “Thanks for organizing everything. It’s turned out beautifully.” I smiled at her gratefully for the compliment.
Everything had turned out beautifully. The place looked fabulous thanks to all of Rose’s cousins pitching in. Rose’s mom turned out to be such an asset with the decorating. She really had an eye for that sort of thing. The food was provided by all of Rose’s aunts, except for her Aunt Audrey since she had made some vegetarian thing that, according to Rose, would get rejected even by a goat that had been starved for 3 years.
The night had been amazingly fun and, since Rose was turning 17, alcohol was allowed, much to the dismay of Ron, but he got over it when Harry took him over to his place for a celebration of their own. The entire night had been filled with drunken idiocy (without anything getting destroyed, thank Merlin), mostly initiated by Rose’s cousins. Teddy and Vic couldn’t come since Victoire was feeling ill. Roxie was busy training and was unable to take the night off. Since James had insisted on coming, Fred decided he’d make a stand as well and the two of them had ditched practice together. Dominique was in some exotic location for a photo shoot. And Molly was working but Lucy had dropped by with a present for a couple of hours. Louis was ever present, as usual, and Lily and Hugo were busy dancing and having fun.
“What are best friends for?” I asked rhetorically and she laughed.
“You would know. Now, I have to get back to my boyfriend and Al has to get back to his girlfriend. And we think you should do the same. Don’t we Al?” Rose said the last part meaningfully and Albus cleared his throat loudly.
“Uh, yes. You should.” he said and I rolled my eyes.
“Alright, alright… I’ll go.” I huffed.
“You will?” asked Al and I nodded. “Okay! Good luck, then.” He nudged me towards the bar. I stumbled but took it in stride, trying to walk as slowly as possible.
I had, somehow, managed to avoid James the entire night. I hadn’t gotten within 10 feet of him in any direction which wasn’t hard, with most of the people from school rushing to get his autograph. James, Fred and Henry were the centre of attention for a while, but people quickly got used to their presence, just like at the ball after graduation. I had managed to keep Henry away from James as well…I took one little bathroom break, and look what happened while I was gone!
James caught sight of me first and surveyed me in silence as I walked over. He was wearing a white dress shirt with a black waistcoat and jeans, a look he carried off very well. He had stubble on his chin, but it suited him and I had a feeling that it was grown intentionally. His hair looked a little longer but I must have been imagining things. I’d only not seen him in… almost a month… which was a bit long I supposed.
“Hey, boys, hope I’m not disturbing.” I put on a cheerful smile which James didn’t return.
“Hey, love. I was wondering where you’d gotten off to.” Henry slipped his arm around my waist and pulled me closer to him. “I was just trying to gather some questions for James’ interview with me. James was just telling me how training has been so far.”
“Oh?” I asked, trying to sound nonchalant. “How’s it going, James?”
“Good. Great.” James replied tightly. “Hard work but I manage. I’m about to move out of my parents’. I get my own apartment with the contract so…” he trailed off.
“That’s brilliant. You should be proud of yourself.” Henry complimented as he drained his beer.
James shrugged as Henry turned to get another beer. “Not that impressive, really. It means nothing.” James glanced at me before turning away. The way he said that last part made me remember the last time I had spoken to him. And I was pretty sure he said them for that very reason.
Henry raised an eyebrow. “James, you’re barely 18. You have a brilliant job, you’re probably getting a brilliant apartment and you’re a household name already! That isn’t nothing.”
James shrugged again. “You have all the things I do except you probably own your apartment.”
Henry laughed a little. “When I was 18, I was in training to be a Healer with barely a few galleons to my name whereas you have, allegedly, signed a contract for 2 years for an unprecedented 7 figure amount. Care to comment?”
“I guess I got lucky.” James answered, not refuting or confirming anything.
“I suppose being the son of the Chosen One doesn’t hurt, either.” Henry commented with a grin.
“I suppose not.” James kept his tone even and normal, but I noticed the change in his demeanour.
I saw his eyes narrow slightly, and his jaw clench briefly. He never did like the insinuation that he had achieved anything because of his father alone. And why should he, when he was plenty talented without needing the support of his last name?
“Henry, you’re not interviewing him right now, are you?” I said lightly. “When’s the interview scheduled for, anyway?”
“Late July, early August, I’d say.” Henry estimated. “Depending on James’ schedule of course!” I glanced at James who only inclined his head.
“Of course. Things are pretty busy already.” James turned to me. “I have my first game tomorrow, in case you didn’t know.” I nearly grimaced at the coldness in his voice.
“Yeah…yeah, I did know, actually. Rose can’t make it so Al gave me her ticket. He didn’t want to be on his own.”
James looked a little surprised and, for a second, even a little pleased, but no trace of it was left after I blinked. “Did he? I didn’t know that. That’s cool though. I hope you have fun.”
“I will.” I said quietly.
There was a moment of silence which was interrupted by the arrival of Fred.
“Hey, Henry, Aidan! Haven’t seen you two in a few hours! Bet you sneaked off to Aunt Hermione’s library, yeah?” teased Fred as he nudged me and punched Henry’s arm lightly.
“If only.” Henry joked. “She didn’t want to steal Rose’s thunder by engaging in debauchery at her party.”
“Maybe next time, man!” Fred laughed before turning to James. “Hey, cuz. Bethany just sent me a bleeding patronus while I was having it off with…well, never mind that but she said that we had to get home now because she didn’t want us tired out for the match tomorrow, so we need to get going now.”
“Oh, okay, then. Let’s push.” James said as he finished his own beer and put the bottle on the counter.
Fred waggled his eyebrows at James suggestively.
“She asked about you again. Asked if you had arrived with a date.”
My heart plummeted to my feet and James glanced at me in an almost smug way before answering.
“Shut it, Fred. Good night, Henry.” James shook Henry’s hand as Fred gave me a hug and was about to walk away before he turned back to look at me. “See you at the match.” He said quietly and I nodded.
I didn’t feel like staying very long after that, and when the last guests were straggling out, I said goodbye to Rose and told Al that he could come over to pick me up whenever he wanted, for the match tomorrow. Henry was going to take me home via side along and he waited patiently, passing the time by chatting to Mona and Prentice who were very drunk and therefore very happy to see Henry. After a lifetime, it seemed, we stepped out of Rose’s garden past the gate, and Henry took my hand firmly. I felt the air around me squeeze me tightly until it gave way.
I was standing in front of my own gate now. I pushed it open and Henry closed it behind him as he slipped in, behind me. He fell into step beside me, as we walked up the walkway to my front steps.
“Did you have fun?” he asked me, I nodded. “I did too. Thanks for bringing me.”
“You’re my boyfriend.” I said quietly, he remained silent a moment.
“Yeah, I am; but it’s still nice that you went with me, instead of spending the night with just your friends.” I nodded again and he leaned in to kiss my cheek. “Thanks.”
“You’re welcome.” I replied.
We got to my front steps and he turned to face me.
“Aidan, you’ve been really weird and distant these past few weeks.” He was straightforward, but his face showed utmost concern for me. “I knew you’d talk to me about it eventually, but I think that not making you talk about it was a bad idea, because we’re just so not with it, like we used to be.” He took a deep breath before he spoke again. “So I just wanted to ask you if there was anything that you wanted to te –”
“I kissed James.”
Have you ever heard silence?
And I am not talking about just normal silence; I am talking about that deep, complete silence, that even made the sounds of nature disappear. So complete that, even the sound of blood pounding in your ears dims down to nothing?
That was the kind of silence that took over, after I said those three words.
It seemed never ending.
Henry just stared at me with those big, blue eyes of his, dark blonde hair ruffling in the warm summer breeze.
It was a perfect night. A perfect night, which I had just ruined with my stupid mouth.
When Henry finally spoke, his voice was so quiet that I wouldn’t even have realized that he had spoken, if I hadn’t seen his lips move.
I took a deep breath, exhaling slowly as I answered him. “I kissed James…well, he kissed me but I kissed him back so… it’s basically the same thing, really.”
“You kissed James?”
I stared down at my feet in shame.
“Yes.” I steeled myself.
I took another deep breath.
“You kissed James Potter?”
I continued to brace myself for the yelling.
I wondered, for a second, whether Henry would actually yell at me for this. He wasn’t very much like most guys. He was probably the most patient and calm person that I knew, beside my brother and my dad. I’d never even seen him annoyed at something. Angry yelling seemed like a far cry for Henry. He’d surprised me before when I had expected him to act like a complete guy.
Maybe he’d do it again.
Then again, maybe not.
“You kissed James?”
I nodded, assaulted by guilt.
I cleared my throat as I shuffled my feet.
“On his birthday.”
“What, you ran out of ideas for a present??” His tone was acidic.
I shut my eyes and grimaced.
“I suppose I deserve that.” I replied quietly and he snorted derisively.
“No shit, Aidan! You kissed another guy while you were with me!”
“It was 3 weeks ago.” I stated softly.
“Yeah and you’re telling me now!” I dared to look up at him. He looked pissed to say the least.
“I’m sorry.” I whispered, unable to look him in the eye.
“Oh, yeah, you’re sorry! I’m sorry for not noticing this sooner!”
He started pacing and I stepped back to give him some room.
“The signs were all there! I thought, I was just imagining you guys acting all weird around each other! Or I thought, at worst, you guys had had a fight! I didn’t think you were the cheating type!”
I felt the need to defend and explain myself. “It was just one kiss, Henry –”
“Oh really?” he cut across me. He stepped right up to me and pinned me with his piercing gaze. “You know how I measure faithfulness? A girlfriend can go sleep with another guy because she was just way too drunk and it was an honest mistake and I wouldn’t get pissed off about it.”
“But it was an honest mistake!” I protested, but he continued talking as if he hadn’t heard me.
“I wouldn’t get pissed, because it meant nothing and that guy she slept with meant nothing and she still wanted to be with me. Can you say the same thing, Aidan?” he asked, breathing heavily. “Does James mean nothing to you? Was that kiss nothing?” he stepped even closer to me, roughly lifting my chin so I couldn’t look away from him. “Or let me make it simpler for you, could you ever stop talking to James just to be with me?”
I couldn’t say anything to that.
What was there to say? That yes, I could stay away from James? Yes, I could stop looking at him whenever he was around? How could I say all that when it wasn’t true, nor was there any way to make it sound believable, even if I said it? I couldn’t stop talking to James. It was impossible. Even if I tried (and I had tried before) somehow, things would conspire to bring us closer. And I was friends with a great big chunk of his family. Seeing him was inevitable.
But the more important fact to face was; I didn’t want to stay away from him.
Henry watched me as I mulled this all over, unable to speak before he stepped away with a curt nod.
“Right. That’s what I thought. See, those girls who screw around because they’re drunk? They’re just plain stupid. That’s their reason for forgetting they have a boyfriend. You, though? I know you’re not stupid. What you did? That’s what you call cheating.”
“It…it didn’t mean…” I could barely speak because of the thick lump of guilt and regret that was forming in my throat.
“Don’t try and lie to me about what it meant, Aidan. If it meant nothing you wouldn’t have not told me. You wouldn’t have locked yourself away for the better part of two weeks. You…don’t know how to be honest, do you?” he asked, shaking his head, anger etched on his face.
“I tried… I tried to… stop.”
Where was all my logic now? Where was the bold ability to speak up and defend myself? Maybe I couldn’t defend myself because this time I was way in the wrong. There was no point.
“Good job. I can see how well that worked out for you.” he remarked sarcastically. “You know what? I’m getting out of here.” He started walking away.
“Henry, please –”
“I really don’t feel like talking shit out right now…or ever, for that matter.” he stated, without glancing back at me.
Henry exited the gate and disapparated with a crack.
I slid down, collapsing on the front steps, staring at nothing.
How had I let things get like this? 2 months ago, I was a normal, moderately happy teenage girl who had amazing friends and a brilliant family and a great boyfriend. Now I had a brilliant family, presumably an ex boyfriend who was very pissed off and a group of amazing friends who were trying to help me get my shit together, while trying to live their own lives.
When had things become so desperate?
Henry was a nice guy. He really was. He had always treated me with respect and affection, and I screwed around with that. I had never felt guiltier in my life. Yes, I had only kissed James and nothing more. Then why did I feel like it had been so much more than that?
Henry was right, that kiss hadn’t meant nothing to me. I had, in a way, cheated on him on a deeper level than I had thought. I hadn’t been honest. I really should have not been such a coward about things and let the relationship end when I knew that I just didn’t feel the same way about Henry anymore.
I felt bad for hurting him, I truly did.
I was pretty sure that Henry and I had broken up. It wasn’t explicitly said, but it was safe to say that it was over.
I remembered Henry telling me very clearly about girlfriend number 10, how he had left her because she had cheated on him after an 8 month relationship. I had been with Henry for less time than that and I had already cheated on him.
Oh, yes, it was over.
I felt a strange sort of freedom and relief flooding me as this realization hit home.
Henry and I had broken up.
It was done now.
All the conflict that had been clouding my mind for months now was beginning to clear up. I would be able to sort everything out now. That kiss that I had insisted to James hadn’t meant anything, could mean something now. I still didn’t know if he wanted anything with me for sure, but at least now I had the option of trying.
And, even if it was just to make sure that all the trouble was worthwhile, try I would.
“C’mon, mucker! Bank left, let’s go!” yelled Al as James flew past our booth.
I applauded along with everyone else, as James zipped through the other players on the pitch, Quaffle tucked under his right arm. His game had improved tenfold, I noticed, but then again, he was training under the best coaches with the best players. And James absorbed pointers like a sponge. He always had the capacity to improve. It’s what made him such a good Quidditch player.
He was faster now, he seemed more agile and his turns were sharper. He moved gracefully and efficiently, not flying even a meter that wasn’t necessary. I couldn’t help but admire his skills as he flew. I had never thought I’d be able to come for James’ first match ever. I’d really lucked out with the ticket.
Rose was with Scorpius. I didn’t know why exactly, because she said it was something between just her and her boyfriend. But if it was important enough for her to miss James’ first match then it was definitely a big deal. She’d tell me when she was ready, I knew. I wasn’t complaining; I was sitting in an amazing seat to watch one of the most eagerly awaited matches in the series.
The match was taking place on James’ home turf, something I knew wasn’t done by accident. I knew that the manager and coaches for the Tornadoes had made sure that the Wimbourne Wasps would come to Tutshill for the match so James, being the newest player, had the support of the crowd, which included a chunk of his family. James’ Uncle George and Aunt Angelina were here to support Fred. Harry, Ginny and Lily were also there along with Ron, Hermione and Hugo. Our booth alone was making more noise than what would be considered normal for an entire stadium.
So far, having the match in Tutshill had turned out to be a good plan. James was playing his finest, having scored 14 goals out of 20.
“And that’s Potter, Weasley, Lovett back to Weasley, Potter. Potter shoots and he scores! That brings the score 210- 120 in favour of the Tutshill Tornadoes!”
The crowd roared its approval as they cheered, sky blue rosettes and flags flashing everywhere. It was rather fascinating to watch, actually.
“That’s my nephew!” George yelled proudly.
“He’s my nephew, too!” Ron yelled, as if competing.
“He’s both your nephew. Now shut the hell up so I can watch my baby play.” Ginny waved George and Ron down as she watched James take a quick lap. Ron stuck his tongue out at his sister. “I will hex your tongue to stick to your nose if you don’t put it back into your mouth this second, Ron.” she said breezily, without glancing at Ron.
Ron mimicked Ginny, making faces at her, causing Lily to giggle and Hugo to grin widely. Harry, however, only shook his head at his best mate. “Unless you want to steal James’ day by dying at his first match, I’d suggest you tone it down, mate.” Harry warned.
I laughed as the adults started arguing (“You’re supposed to be my best mate, Harry! You’re not supposed to sell me out to your wife!” “She’s your sister!” “Exactly!”), before I turned my attention back to the pitch. The Wasps had called for a time out and James’ team was taking a water break. They were being handed towels and bottles of water by the towel boy as they waited for game to come back into play. James, Fred and the third Chaser for the Tornadoes, Vance Lovett, had flown to the ground to talk hurriedly to their coach.
“Who is that?” asked Albus, grabbing Lily’s Omnioculars to focus on the little huddle that James, Fred and Lovett had joined.
“That’s Bethany Meyer, Al. She’s your brother’s boss.” George supplied before he smirked. “Don’t feel too sorry for James though, I wouldn’t mind working under that woman.” Angelina glared at her husband who grinned at her. “You know I love you more, Ang.”
“So you tell me, and I, like a fool, believe you.” Angelina rolled her eyes and turned back to Ginny and Hermione, whom she was chatting with. George caught my eye and smirked.
“I know I have a girlfriend and all that but, I’ll say it, that woman is hot. James, you lucky sod.” Al let out a low whistle as he lowered the Omnioculars.
I didn’t even need to look through the Omnioculars to know that he was correct. I could see her quite clearly from here. She must have been in her early to mid twenties. Bethany Meyer had chestnut brown hair that was poker straight and fell to her shoulders. She was wearing over sized sunglasses, and her outfit would’ve fit in perfectly in any corporate office. She was wearing a grey pencil skirt with a sky blue blouse. Her shoes had a good four inches, as far as heels were concerned. She could have used them as a weapon. She was the kind of woman that men lusted after just by looking at her once. She was, to be frank, quite stunning and was smiling as she talked to James and Fred.
“Would you stop looking at her like that, Hugh? She’s not a cut of meat!” Lily exclaimed indignantly as she forcibly shut Hugo’s mouth which had been hanging dangerously close to the ground.
“Right, right.” Hugo mumbled cheeks tinged with pink.
“No harm in looking, Huwey!” George said, clapping a hand on his nephew’s shoulder. “I’m a firm believer in the look but don’t touch rule.”
“George, stop corrupting my son.” Hermione stated airily as she craned her neck to look out at the pitch. “And I think they’re starting again.”
Hermione was right. Within a minute, the Quaffle was back into play and, once again. The Tornadoes were in possession.
“Look at Fred Weasley go! I swear he gets better every single day. He hardly looks like the young, inexperienced chap fresh out of school that joined the team a year ago. These days he looks and plays like a seasoned pro! Let’s hope that his cousin can follow his example. So far, Mr. Potter, you’re not doing too badly!”
Everyone cheered, showing their approval for the commentator’s words as Fred passed the Quaffle to Lovett who flew in formation with the beaters flanking him. Lovett feinted to the left and passed to James, who carried it forward looking more than ready to score again. He took the shot, but his aim went awry when the commentator’s voice blared out once more.
“Great Scott, was that the snitch ladies and gentlemen? I think it was! About time too; we’ve barely seen it in almost 3 hours of play! Yes, there go the seekers, Greenfield in the lead!”
Greenfield, the seeker for the Tornadoes, took many sharp, angular turns as he followed the snitch, the seeker for the Wasps not far behind him. Unlike Hogwarts matches, play didn’t halt to watch the seekers as they chased the snitch. The shot by James was blocked by the keeper of the Wasps, who passed it to one of his own chasers, giving the Wasps possession of the Quaffle.
“And just look at them flying off. Never seen Greenfield in such good shape! He’s put the last few months to good use, and it shows! Wasps’ chaser Warwick with the Quaffle as he laces past Lovett and Burley! Looks like he’s about to make the shot! And Greenfield pushing his broom to go a little faster, hand only 3 or 4 inches away. Reach for that snitch, man!”
I barely knew which part of the pitch to look but finally settled on the seekers, which is what Al and Harry had decided as well. We both cheered for Greenfield as he pushed his broom to go a little faster, face screwed up in concentration as he flew. And finally, after what seemed to be hours, but was only a few seconds, his fingers closed around the little, winged golden ball.
“He’s done it! He’s caught the snitch! Greenfield secures the win for the Tornadoes and James Potter, in his maiden game, ensures that the win is by quite a margin! Looks like the Tornadoes are back!”
The applause was uproarious.
Ginny was jumping up and down while Hugging Hermione and Angelina. George, Harry and Ron were making all sorts of noise as they cheered and kept giving each other man hugs, which I noticed Lily roll her eyes at. Albus and I hugged as we laughed and clapped for James.
James was flying a victory lap and he blew a kiss to his mother as he flew by the booth. Ginny laughed as she called out that she was proud of him. James had never looked happier than when he waved to the many Tornadoes fans gathered in the stadium, fans that were standing and cheering for his performance. James touched down on the grass, only to be assaulted by his teammates and Fred who was grinning proudly at him. I clapped so hard that my palms were growing numb, but still I cheered. I couldn’t wait to tell him how proud he’d made us, how well he’d played…and there were a few other things I wanted to discuss but that could wait until later, when we’d all go over to the Potters’ for lunch.
James shook the hands of his coaches and trainers, smiling gratefully at them all until he reached Bethany Meyer, cameras flashing all around him. She was smiling broadly as she took off her sunglasses. He held out his hand to her and she looked at it for a second before she swatted it away. He looked a little surprised and his brow creased a little.
“What’s going on?” Al asked, frowning at the scene.
“I don’t know, mate. I think she’s-”
I barely heard George was saying, because I was too shocked with what was unfolding in front of me. All the exclamations of surprise around me blurred into nothing and all I could hear was the blood pounding in my ears as I stepped forward until I hit the front of our booth, my hands grasping the railing tightly to support my weight.
Bethany Meyer grabbed the front of James’s robes and pulled him towards her, catching his lips in what looked to be a searing kiss. The cameras started flashing furiously as every reporter captured the moment. I didn’t notice any of them. All I noticed was James’ surprise melting away until his hand moved to the small of his boss’ back to pull her closer.
Then a new sound filled my ears.
I couldn’t be sure but, it might just have been my heart breaking.
A/N: Please don't kill me!!!!! Please?
Okay, then. I guess I earned all that swearing. I'm sorry, really. But I swear this is all going somewhere! Let me know what you guys thought... and I know you guys are angry with me now but do keep it under pg-13 for the sake of site rules.... please?
Sorry!! You know I love you guys, right?
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