Chapter 5 : The Fifth.
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I looked at everything in my trunk, it was all useless. I ended up wearing a pair of acid washed jeans which I had found in a muggle store by accident. I liked them but I had no idea what to wear with them. I went with a cream v-neck sweater and white canvas trainers. I looked plain but I didn’t have time to complain.
We were meeting them in the great hall, just before the queue started. There was always a queue. Everyone had to line up and al the third years had to get their forms checked for forgeries. Hopefully we would be gone before the majority of people showed up.
I was disappointed to say the least when we walked down the stairs and saw the four figures. Why was I disappointed? Because none of them were the tall sandy blonde who I was rather taken with. The figure who ordinarily would have been him instead had long red hair.
Lily Evans was here instead of Remus Lupin. I should have remembered that she was coming but all the excitement of talking to Remus out classes and about something other than projects had pretty much eclipsed any other thoughts from my mind, as pathetic as that sounded, it was true.
When we walked up, Annabelle was immediately talking to Peter. I was annoyed that I would be the spare wheel. Well, me and Sirius would be. At least I had him to talk to. I was under strict instructions from Isabelle not to talk to him even though she’d dumped him for her new boyfriend. Apparently he was a complete ass.
“Hey,” I said, trying not to sound disappointed. If any of the marauders knew I liked Remus, I wouldn’t be allowed to walk the halls without being either laughed or shouted at. Actually they would probably find a more creative way to embarrass me.
“Hey Warrender,” Sirius said, currently the only one who was listening. I hated couples.
“Where’s Remus?” I asked, all too casual.
“Curious? You asked about him yesterday too.” James said, half joking, half defensive.
“No, I was just wondering is all.”
“He’s gone away for the weekend to look after his Uncle.”
“What happened to him?” I asked, worried. I had no idea Remus had a sick Uncle.
“That’s so sad.” I said, feeling sorry for him. I knew that feeling, well not exactly, but I still felt bad for him.
“Exactly,” said Sirius, “so lets talk about happier things.”
We started walking toward the gates to leave the grounds. The couples were still in their own little world, gazing into each others’ eyes and all that mushy crap which annoys everyone who’s not got it. Plus it was awkward standing next to it.
When we finally arrived in the small hamlet, the streets were still quiet as though it were night. We prowled around the streets, glancing in shop windows and looking for somewhere to sit.
By now the lovers were sick of each other and were finally joining into a group conversation as we walked into Honeydukes. It was the best shop in Hogsmeade by far, well for all the girls anyway. You can’t do much better than chocolate.
They had a massive sale on to celebrate the start of a new school year. Every student who had Hogsmeade privileges was going to walk in and a huge majority of them were likely to buy a cauldron load of sweets. I had settled for buying three bars of chocolate and a bag of moonbeams, silvery sweets which melted almost instantly when you ate them, they were my favorites.
Annabelle had bought hardly anything, Peter the same. Lily had bought pretty much one of everything and was trying to jinx her purse into carrying it all. Sirius and James bought whatever was in front of them. They were much more eager to visit Zonkos. I didn’t want to leave the nice warm shop, the air was still cold.
After being dragged out by Sirius, we made our way over to the blue-fronted shop which had Zonkos painted above the door in purple and yellow lettering. I had only been in a few times before and had never bought anything. Jokes weren’t exactly my thing. I was boring.
As I walked in the first thing I noticed was noise. The shop was empty but there were still nags and pops from various joke items going off. It was loud, annoyingly so. I tried paying attention as I looked around quietly but kept getting distracted by the bizarre noises which were going off around me.
Peter, James and Sirius were clearly in their element here, immediately seeking out the items which they obviously needed to carry out the pranks which they had planned. It was their last year after all, they had a legacy to form. Future troublemakers would look up to them if they got their way.
I was talking to Annabelle for the first time since we’d left Hogwarts and she seemed really happy. She had only been going out with Peter for about a week but she was already gushing about how kind he was and how sensitive. I couldn’t see it but I guess I was bias.
We decided to go to the three broomsticks for lunch even though it was guaranteed to be mobbed. It was just about the only place to go for a drink in Hogsmeade. Only Slytherins went to the Hogs Head and only idiots went to Madam Puddifoots. It was sickeningly sweet.
It was as busy as we’d expected, Sirius had managed to scare us a table. I felt almost guilty as I saw the third scurry off but that died away when the butterbeers came. They were warm and comforting to drink.
We stayed for a while, just talking, but decided to return to Hogwarts at around four. It was starting to darken outside and none of us wanted to wait until it was completely dark to start the rocky walk back to the castle.
On the way back we passed by the shrieking shack, apparently the most haunted place in Britain. I had no idea how they knew this because nobody actually lived there and I’m pretty sure nobody had been in it for five years. The villagers had only started hearing the shrieking back then so it must have been a pretty new ghost.
I wanted to go in but I was outvoted by the rest of the group who were all wanting their supper courtesy of the Hogwarts house elves. I made them promise that we’d go in next time. I was sort of curious about it to say the least.
The only ghost I’d ever talked to was they grey lady and she didn’t even seem like she wanted to talk. She just nodded to everything I said and then said something about finding the Baron. I don’t think she likes students very much at all. Which is weird seeing as she haunts a school.
When we finally arrived, there were a throng of third and fourth years who were trying to barge their way through the doors all at once. I shook my head at their impatience and their stupidity. Then I just marched a path through them, I guess I might be impatient too. Perhaps.
They great hall was already laid out for supper, but no one was sitting down and eating. Supper was the only time the students were all forced to dine at the same time with each other. Something about school unity or some kind of crap like that. I didn’t believe in it myself. Probably because I was quite hungry.
We split from the guys and Lily as we came to the doorway which leads onto the Ravenclaw tower. I tapped the bronze knocker twice and waited for it to ask me a question. Sometimes it was annoying having to answer what the bird asked. It usually took a fair bit of reasoning for it to accept a wrong answer. AN answer which I usually felt was the right one.
“What is so fragile, speaking it alone breaks it?”
“Hmm… It must me some kind of animal or something.” Annabelle pondered to herself.
“Silence.” I said easily, Annabelle wasn’t the brightest Ravenclaw, as nice as she was, I couldn’t help but sigh. That was an easy one.
“Wow, good guess.”
We walked through to the common room to find that although leaving after us, Maia and Isabelle had returned before us. Both of them looked slightly disgruntled to be in the common room before supper. I guess Maia’s romantic plans didn’t quite go as she’d hoped.
“How come you two are here?” I asked innocently.
“Stupid fucking Tom didn’t go into Hogsmeade today. Decided it was best spent training for the tryouts tomorrow.”
“The tryouts are tomorrow?”
“Yes, why on earth is he training for tryouts? It makes absolutely no sense.
“Well, firstly, he’s a boy,” I started, “and secondly, it’s quidditch.”
We all agreed that Tom would fall in love with Maia the moment she tried out for chaser tomorrow. Isabelle and I would be trying out with her. Annabelle had backed out at the lest second. Something about having made plans with Peter. Boy she sure was throwing herself into this relationship. Any other boy would have ran for the hills but Peter was just as socially awkward as she was so I guess it fit.
They instead decided to focus on our trip to Hogsmeade which they had hoped was more fruitful than theirs. Anna told them about the sweet shop, the joke shop, the streets, the three broomsticks and even the shack. She had pretty much poured out every detail of our day and didn’t finish until we were in the great hall on our way to dinner.
When they finally asked me how my day went, I had to tell them that Remus was not present and for me, it was a wasted trip. They seemed more disappointed than I did to find out I had had absolutely no interactions with Remus today. I felt slightly guilty about feeling annoyed he wasn’t there. After all Sirius had told me he would be away for a few days looking after a sick uncle. Man I was selfish.
That’s the kind of guy Remus was. The guy who enjoyed his studies but would give them up to look after a relative. The guy who would ditch his friends to help someone out. I didn’t tell anyone else about Remus’ sick uncle. It wasn’t mine to tell and it was probably something that was private.
I couldn’t figure out why Sirius told me if it was such a big secret. Seeing as I was known as a bit of a bitch. It wasn’t for anything horrible. It was just that in fifth year I may or may not have jinxed Dorcas so that her face changed in a way which I will not describe. I was the only one who thought she had deserved it.
It was after my brief fling with Davie, who was in the year above and had left now. We’d only been going out for a few weeks when Dorcas thought it would be fun to make out with him in a broom cupboard. I wasn’t in love with him or anything but it still wasn’t a very classy thing to do.
I jinxed Davie too but he didn’t whine about it. She ran about telling everyone I had set upon her for no reason and jinxed her so badly she had to stay off school for a week in the hospital wing. Madam Pomfrey and I were the only ones who knew she was faking it. Eventually she was kicked out of the hospital wing.
She was a Gryffindor so the Hufflepuffs and Gryffindors had automatically believed her over me. The Ravenclaws knew I jinxed Davie but he was on the quidditch team and they weren’t very happy about him getting injured in any way. The Slytherins just enjoyed the fact someone had been humiliated, I doubt they even knew it was me.
Well, after that I sort of ruined a few of her relationships, only one of them was intentional. I truly believed she was the bigger bitch but I guess that may have been lost amongst other people. Last year I stopped annoying her about it and settled down. It was something I learned from experience. Guys like to watch cat-fights, but they hate the cats.
I sat down and as I glanced over to the Gryffindor table I was shocked. Imagine my surprise when a boy who is supposedly away for the whole weekend with a terminally sick relative is happily ripping chicken apart with his teeth. I must have been staring at him wolfing down his chicken leg because Sirius noticed me.
He nudged Remus in the ribs and once he had caught his attention, whispered something in his ear. I averted my gaze a quickly as I could as Remus’ eyes flitted to our table. When I looked round again, he had a brand new, and much more sober demeanor. James and Peter were smirking uncontrollably and even Remus’ mouth twitched as he tried to act sad.
I continued eating my food in silent speculation over Remus’ weekend. He looked ill. Maybe he was the one who was ill and he had simply taken a day off to rest. He had bags under his eyes and looked as though he could do with a good night’s sleep. I was still curious about him but I didn’t want to be curious to the point of obsession. That would be a bad thing I reminded myself, still wondering about why he cancelled.
When I got back to the common room that night, I looked up at the moon, it was full tonight. It looked so romantic, it’s beams cast across the grounds. It even made the annoyingly hideous Whomping Willow look nice. I glanced at the willow as it’s branches swayed in the breeze, every so often violently whipping the air as a bird got too close.
Paranoia got the best of me as I became worried that I was the reason Remus had cancelled upon us. Maybe I was being too presumptuous in joining their group so quickly. I mean I only sat beside Remus in one class. I was probably closer to Sirius than I was to him at this point, something which would hopefully change as we received our Charms projects. Anna was my only solid link into the group and that was based upon a first crush relationship with Peter Pettigrew. I was doomed to this crush apparently.
A/N: Hope you like this chapter even though there is a distinct lack of Remus, sorry about that! Hope you like the story so far, I have quite a lot written but it is mostly just skeleton stuff so if you have any idea, feel free to share! Alex :)
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