Chapter 16 : As the dust settles
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Lily was sat on her bed, Hope beside her. Hope was a real mix of emotions. Proud of her best friend’s whorish side, angry at Snape for exposing it and Jake for keeping it a secret, sad because Lily was suffering and also extremely guilty. Were it not for her selfish actions in trying to break up Sirius and Kingston, Snape would never have found out about Jake and Lily. This whole mess was partially her fault, although she’d never admit it to Lily. Lily hadn’t spoken either since they’d entered the room. She was humiliated, depressed and furious all at the same time. She’d lost the respect of pretty much the entire school, as well as of her best friends. Worst of all, it was someone she thought cared about her, Severus, who had dealt her that devastating blow.
Both girls were interrupted from their chain of thought when Hayley entered. She had obviously been crying as she was a total mess. She looked at Lily who opened her mouth to speak but then shut it again. For several minutes, the girls sat on their respective beds in complete silence, occasionally glancing at each other. Eventually, Lily spoke:
“What’s happening with you and Jake?” she asked.
“Well,” Hayley’s voice was hoarse. “I wish I knew Evans. But I don’t. So maybe you can help me by telling me exactly what happened between the pair of you. And if you two’s stories aren’t identical, I’m going to find out which one of you lied and make sure their life is a living hell!”
Lily sighed. “I still like Jake Hayley, but he’s never done anything to me that suggests I have a chance with him anymore. So ruining yours and his relationship would not help me in any way. All it would do was destroy any chance I had of either of you ever speaking to me again. I’m willing to do the right thing, even if I get nothing out of it. Right now, my life is so shit that I can’t imagine making things worse.”
Hayley snorted. “Oh please your life isn’t that fucking bad. You’ve got my brother drooling all over you which is not as bad as it sounds. You’ve actually got a brain in that head of yours that’ll take you miles and you’ve got a best friend who cares about you. The only thing I’ve got in my life that is worth a crap is Jake and I don’t even know if he’s worth it anymore. So compare your life to mine you self-centred, arse-kissing, little shit!”
Hope stood angrily, pulling her wand out of her pocket. Lily also stood but grabbed Hope and sat her back down. She took a deep breath and managed a smile at Hayley.
“She’s right Hope. I need to stop feeling sorry for myself. Besides, she’s going through a lot right now and it wouldn’t be fair of me if I didn’t help her. Ok, me and Jake. We met in a little café in Northampton. I was feeling down because my sister Petunia was being nasty to me because I’m a witch. He was cute so I let him sit with me. He kissed me and I kissed him back. We got to know each other better and I began to really like him. He was oblivious to it though. We had sex about half a dozen times and then summer ended. I never expected to see him again so I didn’t think he needed to know how I felt about him.”
Hayley sat, transfixed as Lily’s story came to an end. Jake had told her the truth. But did that mean she could trust him? Sure he hadn’t lied to her about Lily and he could see why he wouldn’t tell her but did that mean he was keeping other things from her? Hayley lay back on her bed, thought about everything she and Jake had been through. All the logic, all the evidence, everything she knew and loved about him was telling, screaming to her that she was making a mistake. He was telling the truth, she could trust him, why was she doing this? But then there was a part of her that wouldn’t let her get up and find him. Something was holding her back. She couldn’t force herself to trust Jake, it would have to come naturally and right now, she just couldn’t look him in the eye.
The girls were forced to leave their dorm the next day for lessons. Lily took a lot of abuse. People shouted in corridors, threw things at her or just plain sneered. Even those who she thought liked her just gave her blank looks and ignored her. Hope stood by her the whole time, refusing to let anyone get near her. But the fact of the matter was, Lily was the most unpopular head-girl since Flynn Riding, the girl with the biggest boil in Hogwarts history. Jake had less of a hard time of it. Mainly because he was with the Marauders. James wasn’t happy about having to spend time with him but both Sirius and Remus agreed they all had to stick together. Neither of them agreed with what Jake had done but neither of them (especially Sirius) could argue they’d do anything different. It wasn’t, in truth, a massive thing. It was just the way it had come out and the people involved that made it an over hyped thing. James didn’t blame Jake but he felt alone. Even though both Sirius and Remus refused to leave his side, he couldn’t help but feel the world was passing him by. Jake also felt more alone than ever. Amelia was still in the hospital wing for a day or two and Hayley refused to go anywhere near him. Luckily, she managed to compose herself in public and nobody apart from him and the girls knew they were (or had been) an item. Jake didn’t need to compose himself as much, he could easily blame his sadness on the events of the previous day.
Lessons that morning were subdued. The whole school had picked up on the vibe and there was a coldness to them. Lily’s treatment was a mixture of mocking and just a loss of respect. Jake’s was cold glances or murmurings. No-one dared say anything with Sirius Black nearby. Rumours however were merciless. Everyone felt Sirius was only helping Jake out because he was shagging Jake’s best friend. Everyone knew about James Potter and Lily Evans, everyone had felt it was a foregone conclusion. The new guy was almost certainly top of James Potter’s hit list, yet he was protected by James’ best friend. Everyone felt that was a tad unfair. As soon as lessons were done for the day, the girls, Remus and James headed up to the common room. Jake and Sirius, on the other hand, had one last thing to do before Amelia returned to the common room that evening. Find Snape.
Snape was about to head into the Slytherin dormitory when he found himself pinned up against the wall by an invisible force. He gasped and looked round. Jake held his wand out in front of him, clearly the one casting the spell. Sirius stood behind him, twirling his wand menacingly. Snape opened his mouth to call for help but nothing came out. Jake grinned nastily.
“I’m the only one you can talk to Snivellus. Now, you know what I’m going to ask so start talking!”
“Well,” Snape began. “I’d say you were around 5’10, slightly lanky, no really good features about you apart from the fact you’re the spitting image of James Potter.”
Jake sighed and kicked Snape in the balls. He groaned in pain as Jake spat on him.
“How did you find out about me and Lily?”
“You’d be surprised what you can find on the internet!” Snape replied. Jake gave him a nasty little hex that made his kneecap shatter.
“Ok, ok!” He grinned evilly. “You’d be surprised what you can find out when you’re an expert in Legillimency. It’s rather easy to read the mind of a vulnerable little girl with more bark than bite. By the way, how is Kingston?”
Both Jake and Sirius realized what he was saying at the same time. Neither of them had time to consider their actions. They both started punching Snape for a few seconds before realizing they were wizards. Jake pulled out his wand again but Sirius was quicker.
Snape screamed in pain, but no-one heard him. Jake took a step back and grabbed Sirius, trying to cool him down.
“Too far,” he muttered to Sirius as he restrained him, before turning to Snape. “Snape, this never happened. Unless you want McGonagall to find out about what you did to my best friend.”
“Of course not Hunt. Do I look like a snitch to you?”
Neither of them answered, but as Sirius calmed himself, the pair headed off, knowing that that was not going to be the end of it.
James caught Lily as she headed up into her dorm. She wanted to run away as his hand lightly held her arm but knew that he deserved the truth and an explanation. She turned to face him and was saddened to see that James’ face was chalky white and he seemed haunted.
“James, are you okay?” she whispered, feeling his face and realising he was freezing cold yet clammy.
“Yeah don’t worry about me,” he replied, failing to sound cheery. “Listen Lily I just wanted to apologise for everything I’ve done. All this time I’ve been chasing after you… I should’ve realised I was just an annoying little toe-rag to you.”
Lily felt horrible. She’d given James completely the wrong impression. She guided him to a sofa, shooing away a couple of 2nd years who shot her daggers. He slumped beside her and she put her hand on his knee as she looked at him.
“Listen James. Whatever you think, you’re not an annoying little toe-rag. I’ve enjoyed a lot of the time we’ve spent together this year. Look James, I don’t know if the more mature, caring side you’ve shown this year has been to get me in bed or if you’ve actually changed. To be honest, I’m not massively bothered. What happened between me and Jake happened before you became that nice guy and had nothing to do with you. He’s not you and he never will be. And maybe in many respects that’s a good thing. After all, you never broke my heart…”
James was taken-aback but at least Lily’s speech had restored some colour to his cheeks. She smiled at him and he grinned back.
“Does this mean I have a chance with you Evans?”
Lily groaned. “Look Potter, right now the majority of the school hates me so on balance I’d say you’ve got as good a chance as anyone, more than some. More than Severus which is something that last year I wouldn’t have said.”
James chose to ignore the last comment and gave Lily a broad grin.
“Well if you need some shelter from the abuse you’ve been getting, I know a quiet little spot we can go to,” he said, his voice oozing seduction. Lily smiled and knew that she was completely crazy. She was actually starting to like James Potter. She found herself strangely drawn to him but she was not going to make it easy.
“Sorry Potter, I need my beauty sleep. All this doesn’t come from sneaking off with dirty boys now does it?”
With that, Lily winked at him and slipped away. As soon as she was in her bed, she realised something. She’d just flirted with James. She’d had a proper, heart-to-heart conversation with James Potter and then she’d flirted with him. Lily smiled. Strangely, even that thought didn’t disgust her anymore. She really was losing her mind.
Amelia’s return to the common room was imminent. Yet, despite this, nobody really felt in the mood for partying. Sirius and Jake returned shortly before she did and were there to greet her but everything else was kind of an anti-climax. Hope and Lily were up in their dorm and Hayley was sitting with her brother. They were clearly having a tender moment, snuggled up together with cups of cocoa, talking. Jake’s heart skipped a beat when he saw this but James just smiled at them both as they entered, so Jake assumed Hayley wasn’t going to tell him. She hadn’t spoken to him since their ‘break up’ and although he knew she needed time, it was torture for him to let her go. Remus was nowhere to be seen, which was strange. Jake headed to up the dorm to see if he was there. The dorm was locked which was also rather strange. Jake was worried and muttered the alohamora spell to get inside. He immediately backed out as Remus was lying in his bed with a girl and the last thing he wanted to do was interrupt. He slipped back downstairs where Sirius was waiting for him.
“Well, is he up there?”
“Sirius, today is the day Remus becomes a man. He’s up there with some girl,” Jake explained.
Sirius’ jaw dropped. Remus, with a girl. This was almost unprecedented.
“Fuck off. Remus, a girl? The only girl he’s ever liked is Amelia!” he exclaimed.
“Look on the bright side, at least now he won’t be bugging you and Amelia!” Jake joked.
“Who won’t be bugging me and Sirius?”
Both boys turned to see Amelia standing in the middle of the common room. She was pale and had a few scratches but otherwise she was fine and as beautiful as ever. Both their faces lit up as they raced over to her. Jake nudged Sirius and pulled his best friend into a massive bear hug. She gasped in pain and he released her.
“You okay?” he asked, his face falling slightly.
“Yeah, I’m fine, my guts just haven’t been the same since… you know.”
Jake smiled and kissed her on the cheek as Sirius coughed. Jake winked at her before stepping back and allowing Sirius to pick Amelia up and swing her around before pulling her into a deep, passionate kiss. It was Jake’s turn to cough and Sirius let her go. Amelia stumbled dizzily for a few seconds before finding her feet.
“Thanks for that you guys. So who’s not going to be bugging us anymore?” she enquired.
“Remus, he’s upstairs shagging some girl. Seems he’s over you at last!” Sirius grinned before trying to kiss her again. Amelia caught Jake’s eye and shook her head to indicate he didn’t know about the second incident between her and Remus.
“And in other good news,” Jake interrupted. “We found out who hurt you.”
Amelia’s face darkened. She pushed Sirius off and stared intently at Jake.
“Who?” she demanded.
“It was Snape.”
Amelia took a step back, like she’d been shot. She aimed for the portrait hole but Sirius gently grabbed her, caressing her hair gently.
“We’ve dealt with Snape,” he soothed. “He’s not going to go near you again unless he wants another taste of my favourite curses.”
Amelia smiled and relaxed herself in Sirius’ grip. “Can we go somewhere Padfoot?” she whispered.
“Both dorms are full but I know a place,” Sirius replied, winking at Jake as he led Amelia out the common room.
Amelia found herself in one of the old tunnels to Hogsmeade. Sirius led her through it and they popped out in Honeydukes cellar. He started to kiss her and she allowed his lips to envelop hers, going along with him and letting him guide her. He slipped his hands up her top, as he had tried to do on several occasions and for once, she didn’t resist.
“Really?” he whispered.
“Yeah Black, you earned it. But the trousers stay on! We’re not rabbits.”
Sirius grinned and took off Amelia’s shirt, followed by her bra. After a few minutes of intense kissing, they fell back on the floor, exhausted but happy.
“Sirius? Can I ask you something?”
“Have you ever slept with someone?”
Sirius went slightly pale and lay back, contemplating his answer.
“In all honesty, more people than I should have. Fifteen if you must know.”
Amelia sat up and glared at him. She had been worried about this for so long, it‘d taken a lot of courage to ask him. She didn’t want to be a notch on Sirius’ bedpost and whilst she knew he was happy to take it slow, she found herself angered by his answer. She had hoped he was a virgin but in all honesty she’d known his answer would be yes. Despite this, she couldn’t contain the pain his answer had inflicted on her.
“Take a good look at my chest Sirius because it’s the last time you’ll ever see it!” she snarled.
He sat up, alarmed and laid his hands on her arms. She shoved him off and pulled back on her bra.
“Why did you ask if you were just going to get angry at the obvious answer?” he growled.
“I don’t know Sirius. Maybe because I hoped this was as special for me as it was for you. But seeing as how I’m only girl number 16 I guess that means it isn’t.”
“All those girls are in the past Kingston!” Sirius snapped. “I haven’t slept with anyone or even got close since the first second I laid eyes on you. Why? Because I felt we had a chance of something special and I didn’t want to ruin it. This relationship isn’t about our pasts, it’s about you and me and if you want me to, I’ll never ask you to be girl 16. As long as you’re the girl I can spend every minute of every day with, that’s enough for me. By the way, your chest, best I’ve seen. Be proud.”
Amelia smiled despite herself and pulled Sirius into a hug.
“I’m sorry,” she whispered. “I just don’t want to be some girl to you. I want to be the girl!”
“Amelia, you are my girl. Anyone who thinks they have a chance of breaking us up is living in a dream world. I won’t let anyone hurt you anymore.”
“I love you Sirius.”
“I love you Amelia.”
A/N Sorry there isn't a great deal about Jake and Hayley in this chapter, so those on the edge of their seats will have to wait a bit longer. On the other hand, James and Lily, Sirius and Amelia? Are they looking happy? Well we're barely halfway through so there's still a great deal of chaos to come. Over 1500 reads so thanks a lot guys, lets try to get that review count up!! Fave characters? What do you reckon will happen? :) HP
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