Disclaimer; Coralie Bennett, the rest of the Bennett family, any other OC's and the plot are all owned by yours truly. The story title is taken from the song of the same name by Taylor Swift. . Massive thank you to elizabeth_black, my brand new (and first) beta! Everything else is J.K's. Thanks to everyone for reading.
amazing chapter image made by lollipop. over @ TDA. Isn't it amazing?
"What can we do?" Lily asked, folding the letter up again and putting it back on Coralie's bed, exactly the way she had found it. She sighed before turning to face all the rest of her friends, who were all spread out over the spacious dormitory.
"We could ask her about it," Alice suggested as she lay upside down on her four-poster bed, her hair sprawled out like a halo. The latest edition of Witch Weekly slid off her stomach and lay forgotten on the floor as she stood up to look at Coralie's letter.
"Yeah, ‘cause that went so well last time," Marlene snapped sarcastically, slamming shut the old Charms book she had previously been reading.
"But this time we're offering to help her," Alice retorted from her powder table, rolling her dark blue eyes at Marlene's reflection.
"I say we send a reply," Miranda smirked from her place on the floor besides Coralie's bedside table. "Give him a piece of our minds; tell him to back off and, maybe even find out who he is. We can curse – !"
“And get ourselves on his list?” Marlene demanded furiously. “Or get killed? I don't think so," she added, flicking some of her black hair behind her. "I know she's a nice person and all, but we haven't known her anywhere near long enough for me to put myself on the line for her –"
Alice shook her head. "This is where I disagree with you," she cut in before Marlene could add anything else. "Sure, we haven't known her very long, but if this 'sweetheart' is harassing her, we should do something! Or at the least, tell someone who can help!"
"Like who?" Lily asked fairly from the corner, her green eyes laced with worry.
Mary, who hadn't really been paying attention until now, nodded. "Dumbledore?" she suggested, twirling some of her hair around her fingers, like she always did whenever she got nervous. "McGonagall, even?"
Miranda bit down on her lip. "What about someone who's more our age? Someone who can make this guy’s life hell?" she suggested mysteriously.
"Who do you have in mind?" Lily asked sceptically. The other girls looked on with a mixture of excitement and worry.
"Two words for you." Miranda paused dramatically, and the girls all looked dumbfounded. "The Marauders," she said simply.
"This is stupid, Miranda," Lily argued as the pair descended the girls’ staircase, "there is no way they're going to agree. Besides, I honestly don't think this is the best of ideas –"
"They'll agree," Miranda replied nonchalantly, tapping her nose knowingly. Seeing the scowl crossing Lily's features, she shrugged her shoulders to annoy her friend. "Just offer Potter a date with you and he'll be in before you can say Quidditch."
"You are not offering Potter a date with me," Lily informed her through gritted teeth.
"Aw, why not, Evans? It'll be loads of fun," came the cheery voice of James Potter from the chairs around the coffee table by the fire. Miranda didn't know how he did it; after continuously being rejected by Lily, somehow he never gave up. She knew Lily hated him for it but Miranda had always felt a strange trust in him; she knew he wouldn't dare break Lily's heart, but for some reason Lily, couldn't or simply didn't want to see that.
"Potter," Lily groaned, turning around to see James's smug smile. Okay, so maybe that was the reason: The fact that whenever James Potter got within a five mile radius of Lily Evans, he acted like a stupid, arrogant git. Sometimes Miranda could see why Lily hated him so much, but even Lily had to admit, James Potter was definitely one of the more attractive males in the school.
"Lily-kins," he replied with an arrogant tone, the one Lily liked to call his I-think-I'm-best-at-everything voice. His smug smile did not leave his lips.
"Hello, Miranda," Remus said, sending her a small smile and a wave. Remus Lupin was another attractive student. Cute for sure, but there was something mysterious about him, with the scars on his face and his trips to his ill mother every month. Miranda wasn't sure why, but something was definitely fishy about that. "Lily," he nodded to the redhead, some of his sandy brown hair falling into his eyes.
"Hi Remus," she smiled back politely, before turning to James, who was watching her with wide eyes like she was the first girl he'd ever seen. Miranda rolled her eyes - cute but weird was how she described James. "We have a proposition for you," Lily informed the two Marauders.
"Interesting...” James mused, messing up his black hair. “Does it involve my Lily-Flower?" he asked innocently.
Lily glared at him before switching her glare to Miranda, who sent her back a wide grin and raised her eyebrows suggestively.
"Coralie, actually," she answered, her eyes flickering over to Remus, who was watching the conversation with interest. "And it involves ruining someone's life."
"I thought she was your friend," Peter stated in his small voice; his two friends nodded in agreement.
Most people didn't think Peter fitted in with the Marauders. All he ever did was follow James and Sirius around. However, Miranda knew different. She had worked with Peter on a project the year before, just after everyone had found out Shelena had slept with James. Peter had told her how cut up Sirius was, and how the pair of best friends couldn't look at each other without wanting to rip each other’s hearts out. It was Peter who got them talking again, told them they were being stupid and there was no point wasting a good friendship over a girl like Shelena.
"Not her life, the life of this guy who's messing with her," Miranada explained, exasperated. Although Peter was great guy, sometimes he could be just a little dim.
"Well, what do you want us to do?" Remus asked with a puzzled expression on his face. He probably wasn't as used to blackmail as the other Marauders.
"Make his life hell, stop him from pestering Coralie, the usual," Miranda said airily, tilting her head to the side with a challenging look on her face.
"What do we get in return?" James asked warily.
Lily rolled her eyes. Miranda could almost read her mind: He always needs a reason to do something...
"The satisfaction of helping someone nice?" she retorted sweetly.
"How about a party?" Remus suggested calmly. "One you don't report, Lily," he added pointedly.
It was true. Lily wasn't much of a party-goer, and she had more than once reported parties that Shelena had planned. She and Shelena had had many fights over it, but somehow everyone in Gryffindor still liked her.
The common room was filled with Gryffindors from every year, and most of them were already drunk. In the middle of everything was - no surprise - Shelena Millen, on the arm of an incredibly drunk Sirius Black.
Glaring from across the room was Lily, with Miranda standing next to her. Without even looking at her friend, Miranda could tell Lily was furious at what was going on. Miranda took a deep sigh and journeyed back up the staircase without even bothering to look as Lily grabbed Shelena by the arm and roughly pulled her out of the party.
Miranda wasn't exactly friends with Shelena. She was what Shelena considered 'too quiet' simply because, like Lily, she wasn't the kind of girl who got drunk at every party and snogged random boys who she wouldn't remember the next morning. The other girls who hung around with Shelena weren't nearly as bad; they were all kind and smart and, well, everything Shelena wasn't.
"What are you, my mother?" Shelena's drunk voice demanded loudly from the other side of the door, "because for your information, I already have one. And I think I prefer her disappearances than your appearances."
"I'm only trying to help you," said Lily, desperate and close to tears.
"I don't need her, so what makes you think I'm ever going to need you?"
The noise was unexpected and made Miranda jump half out of her skin. Although Miranda had always thought she hated Shelena Millen, it was only when Lily came through the door in hysterical sobs while clutching the side of cheek, where Shelena had struck her, did she realise just how far her loathing extended.
"Only fifth year Gryffindors and up,” Remus said in a calm voice, “and maybe a bit of butterbeer, to celebrate the demise of this guy." Remus focused his eyes on Miranda, silently begging her to agree.
Without even bothering to think sensibly, she grinned. "I like that idea,” she agreed, “seems reasonable, right, Lils?"
Lily rolled her eyes. "I suppose," she replied, sounding as though it was a struggle for her to say it.
Miranda grinned again and clapped her hands together excitedly.
"Well, now we have a party planned,” James began, “I'm going to need a date. Interested, Evans?" He smirked, raising his eyebrows suggestively.
"Not in a million years, Potter," Lily answered calmly, although ice was dripping from the words.
Giving a tight smile, she and Miranda climbed back up the girls’ staircase. Looking behind her, Miranda flashed a shy smile at Remus.
"You're kidding. You're absolutely bonkers. There is nothing going on between Black and Coralie," Kiki exclaimed, staring at Alex like he'd grown an extra head.
"You're the one kidding, Soho. Don't you think it's a little weird that not even a minute after she left, Black was gone too?" Alex raised one of his eyebrows before taking a sip of his pumpkin juice. Kiki glared furiously at him.
"I still say you're bonkers," she grumbled, throwing a chip at his head. The chip bounced off his head and fell to the floor. Smirking at Kiki, Alex picked up and popped it into his mouth, despite the look of disgust on Kiki's face. "Ew,” she said blankly. “But that still doesn't explain why you won't ask her out!" she added forcefully.
"I don't want to," Alex mumbled, a blush creeping in his cheeks.
"Why not?" Kiki asked with disbelief.
"Because I don't like her."
Kiki scoffed and rolled her eyes. Alex mimicked her expression, and was sent a glare for it. "Why not?” Kiki demanded. “You told Lils and I you did just the other day!"
"I like someone else," Alex replied softly.
"Who? I promise I won't tell," she said warmly, putting on her best angel face.
"You," Alex said simply.
Authors Note; Um...Okay, I can't really explain the fact that I haven't updated this is in more than a month because I've had this half written for the past three weeks I've just been sort of avoiding this chapter, Don't know why but this chapter really didn't want to be written. Thank you to my beautiful twin Mellie who helped me write this chapter, My amazing beta Lizzie, All forty two reviews I've recieved, All thirty seven people who have favourited so far and all 4,600 plus readers! THANK YOU!