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Chapter 3 : The Kitchens
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thanks to lionheart@TDA for the gorgeous chapter image
“What’s this?” Braxtany asked, talking the cup from Devon and looking nervously at Anna then into the cup full of clear liquid. The three of them were sitting cross legged in the middle of his bedroom floor on a cool summer night between Braxtany’s third and fourth year at Hogwarts.
“It’s vodka!” Anna answered excitedly. “Try it!” She encouraged.
“It’s not bad, promise.” Devon said, smiling at her. “Anna and I went to Jenna Carrie’s house for a study night this year, and she brought this out, and we tried it!”
“Only take a sip though.” Anna cautioned, “It’s strong. I almost gagged, but it’s worth it. Here,” she handed Braxtany a glass of pepsi from the coffee table. “drink this right after. It makes it better, I swear.” Braxtany did gag. The vodka seared its way down her throat causing her to splutter and heave. But she managed to get it all down and she snatched the pepsi from Anna’s hand and took a large gulp.
She tried twice more. Three shots in all, and thirteen year old Braxtany was feeling the impact of the alcohol. It was fun, freeing. She felt heavy and unstable, but she liked the slight disorientation and the fact that everything felt like less of a challenge and more like a thrill. She grew to love the sweet sting of the cold fluid running down her throat and the fact that she was disobeying her mother who had been too wrapped up in her new boyfriend to even notice that Braxtany was home. Her one issue was that, had her father still been alive, he would have been extremely disappointed in her.
She let such concerns be pushed aside as Anna handed her another small shot. And as she downed it, she was filled with a vindictive pleasure.
“Ugh.” I groaned, looking at the clock next to my bed. It was to late for breakfast in the Great Hall. This meant I had to walk all the way down to the kitchens by myself because no one was in my dorm room. My stomach let out a loud growl. Note to self: kill Lily for not waking me up to eat. I ruffled my hair and trudged out the door in my socks, ratty sweats and tee.
The common room was deserted, but that was to be expected. It was beautiful out and it was late on a Sunday morning. I pushed through the portrait hole and out into the corridor where I found a smiling James and a pissed off Lily arguing in hushed tones. Well, they weren’t really arguing, more like Lily was scolding him and he was just happy to have her be speaking to him. I strolled up to them, catching James’s eye and winking.
“What’cha guys up to?” Lily screeched and leaped into the air, causing her to back into James.
“Jesus Bee! Don’t do that!” She was still clutching to James’s arm, but hadn’t noticed it yet. I laughed at James’s delighted face.
“I won’t Lils, promise. Now I’ll uh, be going. Have fun you two.” I smirked towards where her hand was gripping James’s arm and I walked by them. As I waled away I could hear Lily’s gasp of horror when she realized where her hand had been. Then I heard James, being the dolt he was, make some smart remark about her being able to put her hands anywhere she liked as long as it was on him. Then I heard a smack and Lily’s retreating footsteps with James calling after her:
“Awe, common Lily! It was only a joke!”
I finally reached the picture of the bowl of fruit, tickled the pear, and let myself in.
“Sirius? What are you doing here?” He was sitting at a small table in sweatpants and a loose fitting tee, barefoot, and eating a plate of what looked like chocolate chip pancakes larger than his ego. Which was hard to believe.
“Hey there Bee. Lovely morning isn’t it?”
“That wasn’t an answer.” I said, crossing my arms and glaring at him. It was to early in the morning for Sirius.
“Relax, I overslept and I’m here to feed my starving body.” I snorted, and he simply looked at me. “What’s your excuse?” He finally asked as he patted the seat next to him. I rolled my eyes as a crowd of house elves swarmed around me. I asked politely for scrambled eggs and french toast then turned to Sirius who was silently waiting for my reply.
“Oh yeah, same thing.” I hesitated, then sat down next to him. It looked like he was almost done so I figured he’d be on his way soon enough and I would be able to eat my food in peace. He smiled at me, but we still sat there in an awkward silence for a moment.
“So, how are classes going for you this year?” I asked awkwardly. He shrugged.
“I’m trying this year, so they’re going well. How about yourself?” I was stunned. I wanted to shake him and ask what he had done to the Sirius Black I had known. Turning the conversation away from himself? Trying in school? Who was this kid?
“Uh,” I mumbled. “I mean, its only really the first week, but it’s going well other than Astronomy. I can never really figure that out.” He looked up at me hesitantly.
“Need help? Astronomy is one of my best subjects. I could tutor you.” I blinked.
“Uh yeah. That’d be helpful.” He laughed, probably at the look on my face.
“I told you I was going to change a bit this year Brax.”
“In what ways?” I asked, curious. He paused.
“I want a job. A good one. So I’m going to try hard in school in case my original Qudditch plan doesn’t work out. And I want to settle down. No more slags. I want a relationship.” I was shocked, to say the least. Who was this guy? But then he continued,
“Basically I just want to be the kind of guy people like for more than the fact that he’s ridiculously funny and stunningly good looking.” He smirked and tossed his hair. And he’s back. I rolled my eyes and made to stand up. I wasn’t hungry enough to put up with this. I could always come back later, when I was sure he was gone.
“Wait!” He called, grabbing my arm. I glared.
“What the hell do you want Black?” I spat. This was insane. He was the worlds biggest prat. I may be a little insensitive, but he was cold-blooded, callous and cruel.
“I wanted to talk to you.” he looked kind of nervous. Which was weird, but I couldn’t bring myself to care very much.
“What!” I asked again as I tried to free myself from his grip. His hand loosened from my wrist and he slipped his hand down to my own, taking hold there instead. I eyed his
“Sit down?” He asked pleadingly. I didn’t know what was going on, but he looking kind of sincere.
“What.” Third time I’ve asked. He better let on soon or I was leaving, sincerity or no.
“Look, this is kind of hard for me OK? Can you just cut me some slack?” I just looked at him, waiting. He sighed and let go of me. “I’ll take that as a ‘no.’” Good boy.
“Cut to the chase, Black.” He flinched at my harsh tone. But he patted the seat next to him. I rolled my eyes, but sat back down.
“Look, Bee.” He was staring straight into my eyes. The grey in his eyes seemed like a storm: intense and foreboding. I was mildly nervous, but I stood my ground, staring straight back, hoping my ice blue eyes were affecting him in the same way. He drew in a breath that sounded somewhat shaky. How unlike him.
“Look Bee,” He said again. But this time he continued. “I really like you. A lot. And I’m not talking like ‘I think you’re hot and I want you’. I’m talking about really, truly liking you. I see you, every facet of you, and I like it. I’ve liked it since we took the train together as first years. I’ve never had my eyes off you. Not once, not ever. I’m just finally working up the courage to tell you.” He said it in a rush, but I caught it all. I was stunned. But that soon turned to skepticism.
He had to be joking, Sirius Black, nervous to tell a girl he liked them? As if. And this whole thing about liking me since we met? Bull shit. He was an ass hole. He always had been. And regardless, I don’t believe in things like lasting feelings. Everything in the romantic area was usually fleeting, and based off lust. Thats why relationships never really lasted. Thats why people got bored with their partners and cheated, or broke up or got divorced, or just hated their life. Fleeting and momentary. Everything else was a lie.
He was waiting for a response. I’ll give him one. A punch in the face. Shut him right down. I bet he thought I liked him, or I wanted him. I bet he thought he could nail every girl with a pulse besides Lily (because if he did James would murder him in cold blood). I was willing to put money down on the fact that I was one of the few he had left to secure before his time at Hogwarts was up.
But he seemed to take my silence as an invitation, because he was leaning in. Getting closer. Closer. Even closer. My pulse quickened. Fight or flight? Punch in the face, or a simple slip away? I didn’t want those lips near me. I didn’t want the saliva of a hundred other scorned girls on my own. I wanted to get out. I wanted to leave him here, wishing he could have me, his final conquest. On the other hand, I was the only girl who had not fallen prey to his dreamy eyes and smoldering smile. I was the only one who had been able to resist the charm and the looks. Even Lily had gone through a Sirius phase, but to no avail, thanks to James.
But he intrigued me. I would not deny that. He was every bit as good looking as everyone made him out to be. He could be my experiment. I could see what the big deal was. Maybe if I kissed him, the mystery of the infamous attraction of Sirius Black would unravel in my hands. Maybe there would be some hint to the things other girls saw in him. Maybe. I had no intention of continuing with him if I decided to let this happen. He was getting closer and my thoughts were still whirring. I had to decide something quick.
He was the schools biggest man whore. Maybe the biggest slut in the whole country. Maybe even all of Europe. What he had said to me was probably a line, one he used on many different girls at many different points in time. I wasn’t falling for it, I didn’t have the slightest of romantic feeling for him. But the possibility of discovering what was so special about him intrigued me. I was curious about what the big deal was, and so I let it happen. I let Sirius Black kiss me. Biggest. Mistake. Ever.
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