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Shadows of Midnight by Moments Reprieve
Chapter 10 : Seeker, Seek Her
 
Rating: MatureChapter Reviews: 23


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“Oh no, no, no, no, no,” I chimed as they all filed in around me, making a half-circle around my front. “I am not being drafted into this.”

“I’m pretty sure you are,” James said, sitting beside me and throwing a casual arm around my shoulder. I gave him a look that clearly tried to remind him of our earlier conversation, but he returned one that was something along the lines of who-cares-and-I-am-so-going-to-win-this-fight.

Cocky bastard.

“I’m not doing it,” I said crossing my arms over my chest.

“Ella,” Oak started before I cut him off.

“I’m not! I downright refuse!”

“Um, why are we asking this girl again?” Serge asked quietly.

“Because she’s wicked fast,” Annalie muttered back, her unfaltering attention on me.

“Faster than Jessica?”

“Way,” P.J. said grudgingly, still staring at me.

Serge shrugged and smirked. “Fine by me then.”

James leaned closer, his breath on my cheek. “We need you, Ella,” he murmured, his fingertips gently caressing the side of my neck.

I turned so that my mouth was a slim inch from his, a smirk on my lips as I said, “Need someone else.”

Then I was pulling away, zipping up my jacket and storming up the bleachers to the staircase.

I don’t know why, but my heart began to pound unnecessarily hard, reverberating off of my ribs and the other flesh that surrounded it. Breathing evenly became a struggle as I started to run with long, quick strides. My legs carried me around the field and into the Dark Forest, through the underbrush that generally discouraged such activities and around the huge trees. Small animals fled as I thundered by, their instinct so much better than mine as they ran from danger instead of towards it.

What was I looking for? A place to hide? A haven that was safe from James and his brushing fingertips, his narrowed gaze and his oh-so convincing voice?

Damn it,” I breathed, shaking my head furiously. “Don’t think about it, Ella. Don’t even start…”

But I already had started. I had thought about the feeling of a broomstick beneath me, the only thing keeping me from a death-causing plummet to the earth. I had thought about my eyes scanning the arena for that little flash of gold, soaring after it when I saw it, using my superior reflexes to snag a win. The screams of triumph, the flare of satisfaction, the way James’s eyes would light up when I landed and he wrapped his arms around me…

NO!” I screamed, turning around and slamming my back into a knotted tree trunk. I wasn’t sure if my scream of denial had been pointed towards becoming the seeker or at my little beautiful fantasy, but it hardly worked in either case. It continued in the back of my mind, becoming more and more wonderful, more and more necessary.

“It’s off limits,” I murmured, much more quietly as I looked up into the leafy canopy above me. “All of it is off limits.”

The reality of my statement struck me like a physical blow, causing much more pain than I ever imagined. None of it was for me – not Quidditch, none of my friends, not even my grades. None of it was real. My life at Hogwarts was nothing but an unreality, a dream like my fantasy of winning a Quidditch match, something we came up with. I didn’t deserve any of it.

It hurt like hell, but it was painfully true. Tears rose to my eyes, real, genuine tears; I couldn’t remember the last time I had cried. But I did now, huge, broken sobs that drove me to my knees in severe, sweeping depression.

It was weak, but I couldn’t help it. I thought about all of the things that I was claiming that weren’t rightfully mine, all of the things that I could never truly have. Friends, academic ability, a sense of belonging…

I didn’t belong. I didn’t deserve to belong. I was a lying little cheat that would never really fit in to society because of what she was – a killer, a hunter.

Merciless.

Shady.

Murderous.

My sobbing gained a new pitch as I thought about everything I was and everything I was not. Each piece of evidence stung like a bee sting, covering my mind until I was nothing but a swollen, pussy ball of pain. A want to scream began to grow inside of me, one I struggled to squash with the best of my ability.

That was where James found me – on my knees, stooped over, rocking and hiding my weepy face in my hands. His arms were around me before I could even hear him settle in beside me, an immediate shhhh sound coming from his lips. I tried to quiet, to ask him what he was doing, but every time I attempted to speak he held me tighter, his lips against my scalp as he continued his odd little hush song.

Finally, I felt my shoulders relax, my body slumping against his as I cried into his chest. His lips moved from my scalp to my temple, his mouth closer to my ears. “It’s okay Ella,” he whispered when the worst of my blubbering had faded. “We aren’t going to make you do anything you don’t want to do.”

I slipped up. I knew that the moment I whimpered, “I don’t belong here.”

In all honesty, I meant that I didn’t belong where I was right in that moment – in his arms, no matter how beautifully they fit around me. James was James; handsome, wonderful, clever, trusting James, and he was not mine, just like nothing else was mine in that place. I shouldn’t have been there, not like Annalie should have or even P.J.

His grip around me tightened as he breathed, “Of course you do. You belong with your family.”

“My family is in an apartment in London,” I whispered back, tears still moistening my cheeks.

“We are your family, Elaina Riley.” James reached down and took my chin in his strong fingers, forcing it up so I had to look at him. “We always will be.”

“But what if - .” I started, only to be cut off by his thumb over my lips.

“We. Are. Your. Family.” He repeated before the hint of a smile touched his eyes. “So you’re stuck here with us. Where you belong.”

Then his thumb moved, brushing gently across my cheek, his hand following it to my neck. I forced a shaky laugh as I murmured, “You’re just trying to get me on your Quidditch team.”

He grinned and shook his head slowly. “In most cases, that would be true, but not in yours. Never in yours.”

“Why not in mine?” I asked, closing my eyes and leaning against his chest.

“Because you’re good enough to be serious.”

“That doesn’t make any sense at all.”

“Of course it does – you’re so epic that I would never screw with you.” I smiled and almost commented before he added, “That’s why what Oak told you is nothing but a load of crap.”

I froze and so did he, reading my body movements as easily as he would read a picture book. I wanted to pull away, but there was a far more dominate part that said it was safer curled up inside of his grip, where I couldn’t see his eyes.

Then I made a split-second decision that would change everything.

“I’ll be your bloody seeker, James Potter.” I lunged forward and pecked his cheek, light enough that I could barely feel his body heat. “Just make sure I stay good enough to be serious.”

 

“May I request a drum roll?” James asked grandly, ignoring the odd looks everyone was shooting him.

I glared at him from behind the sweaty cloak he was holding in front of me, blocking me from the view of our friends. The theatrics were completely unnecessary, and he knew it – but then, he was a Potter, and Potter’s never did anything that was average.

Immediately, there was a long series of metallic clicks against the table as several people beat their spoons against the wood. I sighed and shifted my weight to my other foot, rolling my eyes as James purred ostentatiously, “It is my honor, my pleasure, my orgasm to present to you the new seeker of Gryffindor house – Elaina RILEY!”

He whipped the robe away from my face, revealing my ruffled and muddy form. Annalie let out a shrill scream, launching up from her seat and throwing her arms around my neck. “Yes!” she screamed as Oak jumped to his feet as well. He threw one arm around my shoulder and shook me roughly as Rhyad clapped, laughing with relief. Even P.J. was smiling, the tension that had risen up between everyone evaporating like a fog beneath the sun.

“Welcome to the team, sweet-cheeks!” Oak roared into my ear.

I squinted and grinned, poking him between his ribs. “Thanks.”

“So what changed your mind?” Rhyad asked, leaning forward on his elbows.

“My wonderful persuasion skills,” James said, striking a bold pose.

My eyebrows rose as I poked him in the chest hard enough to make him wince and rub the spot. “Yeah, that’s it.” I growled sarcastically.

“But really, what was it?” Rhyad pressed.

I shrugged slightly, very aware of P.J.’s eyes on the very small space between my body and James’s. “I figured I couldn’t turn all of you down without you torturing me in to submission, so I gave in.”

“Good choice,” Oak said with a smirk. “We would have duct taped you to a chair and made you listen to bad opera – not the good stuff, the old crap with fat ladies dressed as Viking women.”

I laughed along with the others, shaking my head at him as I finally peeled myself away from their grasps. “I’m starved,” I said, pushing my way into a spot on the bench.

“Well, you’d better eat quickly,” James advised as he reached over my head for a roll.

“Why’s that?”

“Because you’re going for a fly right after dinner.”

I froze, fork in hand and eyes wide. “I’m doing what now?”

“Going for a fly. Look, love, the only time we’ve actually seen you on a broom was when we went for that ride of ours.” Both James and I smirked at the memory. “So we need to see how you are in the air.”

Abruptly, Serge, who had been sitting unnoticed beside Rhyad, taking part in a completely different conversation, joined ours. “Wait,” he said, looking affronted. “We’ve had this girl join our team when we haven’t seen her on a broomstick? What the hell are you guys thinking!”

“Serge-.” Annalie began with a soothing voice before he interrupted.

“No. I mean, why does it matter if this girl is fast when she’s a novice in the air?”

The space between us grew very thick and congested as everyone tried to think of a way to defend me – and themselves – against Serge’s outburst. Surprisingly, it was P.J. who spoke on my behalf, making me wonder if God existed after all.

“This girl is the quickest freaking thing that you will ever have seen. She caught an apple that I threw at James when she was sitting a couple of feet away from us to begin with.  No one can run faster, have better reflexes – hell, she probably has better senses than you and I can ever dream of. This girl is exactly what we need. It doesn’t matter if she can’t ride a broom; if the snitch comes within three feet of her, she’ll get it. Guaranteed.”

Maybe if Annalie or Oak had said this, Serge would have remained doubtful or angry. But with P.J.’s words, he eased up, respect entering his face. “If you guys are so convinced,” he said grudgingly. “But if she loses a game for us, I will quit.”

With that, he turned around and once again talked to his friends.

“Maybe… we should head out to the pitch,” I said quietly, my appetite suddenly abated.

“Relax Ella,” James replied, rubbing my back. “We know you’re going to rock it.”

“I’d still rather get some time on the broom now, if that’s okay.” I rose from my seat and straightened my shirt, not looking at anyone.

James could obviously tell that I was still a little insecure from my crying bout earlier, so he nodded and took my arm. “Okay, no problem.”

Oak lifted himself up as well and threw an arm around my shoulder, squeezing me encouragingly. “Yeah, we’ll go down and practice now. We probably can’t use the pitch, but that doesn’t mean we can’t fly, right?”

“Good luck,” Annalie chirped as they dragged me away. “I know you’ll do great! Just take it easy, all right?”

I wasn’t allowed time to answer as the boys pulled me out the doors and into the cold evening air. On our way to the pitch, Oak and James quizzed me on every aspect of Quidditch possible, from the positions to the rules and who broke the rules in the year 1832 to 1974. Apparently, they found my knowledge of the sport more than adequate as we reached the broom shed, Oak pulling a key out from beneath his shirt and unlocking it.

“Did you hear about what our dads did?” James asked as Oak began sorting through the broomsticks, trying to find the right one.

“No – what?”

“Well, our old men were tired of listening to us gripe about how crappy the school’s brooms were, so they got a lot of parents together to pay for some good ones to fly on. They also made a deal with the broom companies so that when any one even starts to wear out it will be replaced.”

Oak joined in, finally pulling out a slender dark brown broom with a golden-and-red fringed tail. “A lot of them are even specialized for certain Quidditch positions for the kids who can’t afford their own brooms.” He offered me the one in his hands. “You know, specially-made ones for speed, durability, maneuverability, etcetera.”

“How did you guys manage that?” I asked unthinkingly.

Both Oak and James looked at me with raised eyebrows. “My dad is an internationally known Quidditch star.” Oak said.

“My dad is ‘the Chosen One’ and still receives gift baskets for his service for the wizarding world.” James added.

“Not to mention Scorp’s old man, who is loaded…”

James saw my confused look. “Scoprius Malfoy – seeker for Slytherin team. He’s apparently as good as my dad was, but the only reason people say that is because Dad had this evil Nazi teacher on his butt all the time…”

“Bull shit!” Oak interrupted. “Your dad was always in trouble because of himself, not because of Snape!”

“Yeah, well, your dad had an ass so tight that he wouldn’t even dream of misbehaving!”

“Boys, chill!” I squawked as Oak started to retort. “Seriously – you two are like babies. Are we going to fly or not?”

The two glared at each other for another second before their anger evaporated, leaving them good-natured as ever. “Yeah,” James said, reaching out and finding a slightly thicker broom with the same colored tail. “We’ll go with you, just so we can sort of get a feel for how you move.”

I sighed and straddled the broomstick, forcing my heart to slow down. When I remained on the ground for a rather long period of time, Oak said, “We’re ready when you are.”

“Right. Of course.” I swallowed thickly and jumped into the air, the broom catching me before I could crash into the ground and carefully lifting me higher.

Slowly, experimentally, I leaned forward and was propelled out over the lake, the stick between my thighs faster than the old piece of crap my father had taught me on. I didn’t slow, however, instead encouraging the broom to carry me farther, quicker, leaving the boys behind me.

“Ella!” James called.

I sighed and leaned to the side, pulling on the front of the broom so I could turn and face them. “Yeah?” I yelled back, watching the two soaring to catch up.

“Will you fly with us for a minute? We want to make sure you’re used to the broom before you go racing off like that,” Oak said, slowing to a stop beside me.

“Hey, you were the ones who wanted to get a feel for how I move; I move swiftly.”

The boys looked at each other before sighing. “Fine – go.” James said. “But when we tell you to try something, try it, okay?”

“But stay above the water!” Oak added before I could disappear. “That way if you crash, it won’t hurt too badly.”

I snorted but didn’t deny their statement, once again beginning my flight. The two gave me a minute to just soar, getting used to the broom, rising high into the air before lowering until I was an inch above the water. After I had been granted that, Oak called, “Tight left turn!”

I pulled to the side and my tail end swung around until I was flying to what had been my left.

“Same to the right!”

I repeated the process to the other side.

“Quick rise!”

I kicked my feet onto the tail and shoved downward, resulting in a perfectly straight upward broom. I flew above the treetops, above the lower towers of the castle, until I heard James scream, “DIVE!”

It was as if I was a stone dropped from a bird’s talon. I pressed my body close to the wood, my hair streaming out behind me as I fell closer and closer into the water. I swear I felt the broom quivering beneath me, growing fearful as I continued to not pull up. When I had dropped so close to the water that I could feel its moisture on my skin, I jerked up on the handle and pulled to a sudden and definite stop.

My heart was pounding in my ears and my breath was rapid in my chest as I stared at the ripples the air from my body had made on the water, circles that grew larger and fainter as the distance between me and them grew greater. I close my eyes for a brief minute, calming myself before my hearing started to work again.

Fucking God, Elaina!” Oak roared, making me flinch towards him. “Are you trying to die?”

“Excuse me?” I asked, swinging in a slow and lazy turn to him.

“What the bloody hell was that?” James snapped, the two boys flying towards me, red-faced and raging pissed.

“What you told me to do – a dive.”

“We asked for a drop, not a suicide!” Oak snapped, swerving closer to me.

“What’s the big deal?” I asked them, looking from one boy to another.

“The big deal is the fact that we need you in one piece, not a million!”

“We don’t want you hurt,” James said, a little bit quieter than his friend.

“But I’m okay! I’m fine – I’m in control.”

There was a long silence before Oak sighed and reached out, touching the back of my hand. “You are a part of our team now, Elaina. You are working for all of us, not just yourself. And even if you weren’t our new seeker, we would do everything we could to keep you safe.”

I couldn’t help but offer him a small smile, shaking my head. “You lot are so protective,” I said.

“It comes with the package,” James replied dryly.

I flew a lazy circle around them as we were quiet for a brief moment. Then Oak said, “Let’s see how tight a circle you can do,” and I knew we were back to the grind.

 

“Elaina,” Annalie crooned softly, shaking my shoulder. “Ella, wake up.”

I made a sound that was something along the lines of ‘gggnaffno’ and rolled over, burying my face in my pillow.

“Ella, Connor O’Brian is waiting outside the portrait hole saying something about a late breakfast. And he had a bouquet.”

That caught my attention and I lifted myself upright, my hair tangled and pushed to one side of my head, “What?” I groaned, squinting at her.

She wrung her hands nervously as she stared at me. “Do you want me to tell him to go away? I could say you’re not feeling well…”

I sighed and pushed myself upright, trying to rub my eyes into usage. “No, no. Go down and tell him… tell him that I’ll be ready in five minutes, okay?”

Annalie nodded and disappeared down the staircase as I crawled towards the end of my bed, falling off of it in a painful heap. Traditionally, (as you might have noticed) I am more graceful than that, but my flying workout with James and Oak had lasted from five at night to one-thirty in the morning, at which time the current flying instructor (Professor Wiggin, complete and total old nutter) had stumbled outside and screamed us out of the air. My legs were the rough equivalent of jelly and I was completely exhausted for one of the first times in my life.

It took me a minute to unlock my trunk, at which time I managed to find a pair of pants and a shirt that I hadn’t worn that didn’t completely clash. How I changed in to these was a wonder, and by the time I did Annalie was back.

“He wants to know what you were doing before you started getting ready,” she said, leaning against the doorway.

I sighed and popped my back, saying, “Tell him that one, I was sleeping, two, he sounds like a complete and total creeper asking me that, and three, he needs to stop using you as his messenger.”

She grinned and vanished, forcing me to stumble into the bathroom. I managed to wash my face without splattering water all over myself and I brushed the worst of the knots out of my hair before moving on to my teeth, squeezing toothpaste onto my toothbrush. That was when Annalie appeared in the mirror behind me, saying, “He asked if I minded being his owl to you, and I said no, so he told me to tell you that he doesn’t mean to sound like a pervert but he wants to know why you aren’t ready for your date.” She paused before asking, “Is it a date?”

I sighed and shoved the brush in my mouth, mumbling, “Only because of a poor choice of words. And tell him that I wasn’t expecting him to take me so literally.”

I guess Annalie was getting in to the whole “lover’s messenger” part because I didn’t even have a mouth full of foamy spit before she was back again, panting slightly and chiming, “He wants to know if you’re upset with him and if you didn’t actually mean it was a date or if you were just placating him by telling him that you were going to have breakfast with him but were planning on spending the morning avoiding him at all costs.”

I spat out a glob of blue spittle before turning to her, saying, “If you’re enjoying this, tell him that I was planning on eating with him, I just wasn’t expecting him to go down and pick me a bunch of flowers and I feel bad that he went to all that effort and I accidently completely forgot about our meal together until this morning because of a rather disastrous series of events that took place last night.”

I was back to brushing and she was back to rushing and I was finally rinsing out my mouth when she reappeared. “He says don’t feel bad about forgetting but he wants to know why you forgot.”

I dried my face and smiled, giving her a hug as I passed. “You should go eat a chocolate frog or something for all of that,” I told her.

“What are you going to tell him?” she asked me, trailing after me as I made my way to the door.

“The truth.”

“Shoes,” she added as I started to slip out, making me look down at my feet and swear. I shoved my feet into my now-abused sneakers and left, thumping down the stairs and sliding out the portrait hole.

Connor O’Brian was sitting on the floor not three feet away, a bouquet of roses and Queen Anne’s lace in one hand while his other held his chin. He stared at the ground dejectedly, not having heard my approach.

I smiled and knelt beside him, cocking my head to the side as I said, “I’m sorry I forgot. I really am.”

He must have jumped a foot in the air, clutching his heart and gasping, “Jesus Elaina! Were you trying to give me a heart attack?”

“Yes, it’s my life’s ambition. Did it work?”

He laughed and nodded furtively, pushing himself upright. He remembered his flowers and offered them to me, saying, “For you, Madame.”

“Thank you, good sir,” I replied, accepting them and giving the bundle a curious sniff. “They’re lovely.”

“Quite like you.”

It was a struggle not to freeze, not to act as if I was never complemented. Instead, I smiled and nodded down the corridor, asking, “Shall we go?”

He nodded and led me to the kitchens, showing me yet another path that I had yet to discover. The moment we stepped inside I was enveloped by an embrace of heat and good smells, the kind of sensation that made you smile and feel tingly.

Connor took my elbow and led me to the corner where a small, round table waited for us, all dressed up in a white tablecloth and a wide arrange of cutlery. I smiled as he pulled my chair out for me, commenting, “This is beautiful, Connor. How did you - ?”

“A gentleman never kisses and tells,” he told me, sitting across from me.

“Are you implying that you make out with house elves on your spare time?”

“They’re excellent practice.”

I couldn’t help but laugh, the sound rising over the clank of pots and pans being thrown over fires. One of the elves, probably having heard its species named, rushed over and asked, “The muster and musses would like some fink, yes?”

I nodded at Connor and said, “I don’t know how this works.”

“We can ask you for anything we want, can’t we Lyric?” he asked the house elf, making her bob in agreement.

“Yes sir, the muster can order whatever he wishes.”

Connor smiled at me and said, “Ladies first then.”

“Um…” I felt my forehead wrinkles as I said quietly, “A blueberry muffin and some fruit, if that’s possible.”

She nodded enthusiastically before turning her wide, blue gaze to the boy across from me. “I’ll take the usual,” he offered before she darted off, her scamper containing nothing but pure joy.

“I take it you do this a lot?” I asked, placing my flowers on the table.

“Yeah.” He reached out and took a pitcher that was sitting beside his elbow, pouring iced pumpkin juice into the two goblets before us. “A lot of times I stay awake working on homework or Quidditch strategies and fall asleep really late at night, which means I wake up after breakfast is over. I’ll just come down here and grab something between classes or, on weekends, eat down here. It’s useful.”

I nodded and took the glass he offered me, swirling it a bit before taking a sip. “I didn’t even know this was here,” I admitted.

“Really? I would have thought someone in your group would have showed you.”

I shrugged. “Maybe it didn’t occur to them.”

“Or maybe they wanted to impress you.”

“It would have worked.”

“Is it working now?”

I laughed slightly and nodded, “Yes, it is.”

There was a slight pause before he asked, “So why did you forget about having breakfast with me?”

My good mood and smile faltered for a minute before I said, “I am the new seeker for the Gryffindor Quidditch team.”

“You’re what?”

“My reaction exactly.”

“But how could that have happened? They, I mean, you had a seeker, didn’t you?”

I shrugged. “Not a very good one. She quit yesterday, and my friend talked me in to taking her place. Her robes even fit me, if you can believe it.”

“Oh my God. Oh my God.”

“I know,” I groaned, leaning forward and smacking my forehead against the table.

“You don’t seem too enthusiastic.”

“They had me flying for eight and a half hours yesterday.”

That made his jaw drop completely. “You’re kidding me!”

“I’m not.”

“What is Oak bloody thinking?” Connor reached out and touched the back of my hand, making me look up. “He hasn’t has a seeker for a day and he’s already worn her out.”

I smiled weakly. “Tell me about it.”

There was a brief lull before Connor said, “You know this totally messes with my plans, right?”

“What plan was that?” I asked.

“Well, I was hoping that come the Gryffindor-Ravenclaw match that there would be some part of you what was rooting for my team, but now that is obviously not going to happen now because you are forced to have allegiances to the lions down the lane.”

I laughed and brushed my hair out of my eyes, saying, “Well maybe I’ll take my time catching the snitch against you instead of just grabbing it from under your nose.”

“What makes you think my team won’t get it?”

Smiling, I replied, “Because I’m fast.”

Abruptly, Connor grabbed the pitcher from the table between us and dropped it straight down towards the ground. I lunged forward and snatched its handle, several droplets spilling out over my fingers as the fluid inside of it sloshed about.

“You weren’t kidding,” he said as I carefully replaced the jug. “Can you fly well?”

I shrugged and winced, feeling my sore muscles from the night before. “Relatively, I guess. I’m not about to fall off because of a mistake any time soon, but a first-year could probably out fly me.”

He bit his lip and watched me for a long moment before a house elf appeared, laden with our food and beaming at us. She placed the trays in front of us and walked away after a slight bow, off to continue her work.

“I didn’t really want to do it,” I admitted quietly.

“Then why did you?”

“I felt obligated in a way. They’re my friends, you know?”

“I’m your friend.”

I smiled at him as he grabbed a fork, smearing what looked like hot chocolate sauce all over his pancakes. “Yes, but they easily outnumber you, and I didn’t want to be tortured into submission.”

He smirked and we started to eat in silence, him diving into his chocolate overload and me picking at the wide selection of chopped fruit in the bowl before me. I found myself watching Connor out of the corners of my eyes, studying him as he moved.

He and his kind were a mystery to me – the race of teenagers that I was commonly inappropriately associated with.  This boy was smart, funny, charming, but then there were those like P.J., who was sullen and snappish. They all had depth, had meaning, had joy; things that I knew had been stolen from me.

Connor was also admittedly handsome. And no one in my group had claimed him like they had claimed James and (this name I thought as quietly as a whisper) Oak. If I were to enter a relationship with him, no one would think a thing of it.

And it would be harmless, even effortless. He would allow me to get James off my back – more appropriately, get his arm off my shoulders – and make P.J. feel unthreatened.

Would it really be too terrible to have someone to hold my hand? To eat meals with, to cheer me up? He could be there while I, secretly, studied to try and find the beast. And then we would be through, me ending the relationship the day I finished my mission.

But as I lifted my gaze I realized that I couldn’t. I couldn’t do that to him, giving him the wrong impression and hurting him. He was too good for that.

I sighed and rubbed my temples, feeling the inkling of a head ache starting between my eyes. The stress was beginning to tear down my body from the inside, killing me slowly.

“Things will work out, Elaina,” Connor promised, making me look at him.

“I know they will. I just… wish they would be worked out sooner.”

He nodded in agreement before he said pointedly, “So how did the end of you water fight go with Wood?”

I laughed and shook my head. “Well…”

 

E/N: So? What did you think? Why don’t you tell me with a word of two in the little box here? Liked it, didn’t, quotes that you enjoyed, you’re opinion of Elaina’s weakening resolve… Cheers.
 


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