Actually its bloody freezing, but I decided to prescribe myself some fresh air for my mental state.
“You look cold” a smooth sounding voice says from my right.
“Obviously” I say in a very Snape-like voice. I’m in a very Snape-like mood, so its not all that disgusting.
“Let me help you out” I finally look up to see a very chivalrous ( and very cute) guy taking off his cloak and wrapping it around my shoulders. He takes a seat next to me on the stone bench. He’s one of those guys that have nothing exceptional such as blue eyes-cute, but he does have the cheek bones-cute.
“I want to ignore the chessy pickup lines you just said and give you a chance, but they’re not letting me” I say apologetically, though his cloak is admittedly warm.
“Don’t fix something if it isn’t broken” he shrugs. Why is this cute guy talking to me? I am a frigid, unloved, thing.
“How revolutionary” I response back.
“We are the future, you know” he says seriously back
I let myself laugh at that one-but only for a second. I am still a unhappy mess.
“You need to let loose, you look a little stressed” he says seriously. I notice his flat brown hair. But so flat in color it compliments his perfectly peached face in the cold.
“Don’t offer alcohol on the first date” I warn him, handing him back his cloak. He refuses it with a lazy hand wave.
“How about second? I know a place doesn’t question age in Hogsmeade” He grins at me, but it doesn’t meet his unsure eyes.
“You’re of unsavory character and work fast. I appreciate both” I really do.
“You’re as beautiful as a doe and snappy as a turtle”
I cringe, “Not on the same compliment footing” but even as I say this something seems to click at the word ‘doe’. The ever-long mystery of James Potter...what did that doe from Evans really mean? I make a mental note to dig through her closet when she’s not there.
“I’ll shower you with compliments next time we meet then!” he exclaims already stepping away from the bench.
I give him a puzzled look, while he bends at the knee and kisses my hand “Save the date, next Hogsmeade trip, at the place we discussed with very cool beverages and ale”
He turns and starts walking away. I yell after him “Hey I don’t know you’re name!”
He replies without looking back, “I don’t know yours either. Life’s more fun a mystery!”
I smile to myself. Hogsmeade date Valentine’s date with mysterious suitor. Better. I inhale the clock’s scent like girls are supposed to do, it just smells like fire ash and pine. Dangerous hobbies, noted.
“You’re in a good mood” Abby says to me
“Thank you” I say sincerely.
“And sarcastic as always” Sirius adds sitting down at our lunch table of Abby, Blair, Nicole, and I.
“Why are you always popping in at my life like a perfectly timed commercial?”
He smirks at the me, “I do miss those muggle jokes you always crack. I really do, Chlo. Almost as much as I miss you” then turns to the rest of the table and says “She is an unnervingly good mood”
“Am not!” I say, but still beaming nevertheless.
“You know even when you and James were together you still weren’t this...happy. My god stop smiling!” Sirius says shoveling his hands over my face.
“I think she killed Gina” Nicole says seriously. All at the once the table freezes and looks at me then snaps their heads towards Gina is supposed to be sitting with the other THBs.
“She’s not there!” Abby exclaims
“Enough. I don’t want Gina dead, where did you get that idea?”
Laughter and scoffs go around the table. Most from Blair, who holds on to the table before collapsing in her laughter.
“Its nothing. I have just...have a date for Hogsmeade tomorrow” my grin completely covering my face like a arse.
Squeals come from the girls as well as questions while Sirius’ eyes actually ignites with curiosity. This could be fun. I mean I haven’t heard James has a date yet, but he will most defiantly know that I do if I share with Sirius. Oh then there’s the problem that I still don’t know his name.
“Its a surprise....mystery if you will” I say.
The girls start again while Sirius says, “No chaps good enough if they don’t pass my inspection.”
“Which consists of mud fights with you (“three rounds” I add on the side), chugging contest, and a game of who can last the longest on a broomstick while speeding towards the ground.”
“How do you know this?” Nicole asks laughing.
“He challenged James to it over Christmas holiday” I say rolling my eyes.
“Even then, he didn’t win, but he gets a E for Effort” Sirius puts in.
“I really didn’t see you last Hogsmeade trip, what with you snogging Ellen’s face” I say
“Ah, but now its your cousin. I think a little better” Sirius winks. I shiver. Very gross, very unnecessary.
“Aw guys we will all have dates and won’t see each other tomorrow!” Abbys pouts to the girls and I.
“Just hangout tomorrow night” Sirius suggests
“Oh I’m not planning to have my date end at Hogsmeade” Nicole suggest slyly.
Sirius perks up, “Wish I met you a little early in life”
“Shove off you pig, both of you!” I add looking at Nicole. She just smirks.
James chooses that moment to walk by us, and as if life slows down, our whole table simultaneously watches for my reaction. James walks down the between the tables of Gryffindor and Hufflepuff like its an alleyway, a nonexistence wind, belonging to a higher being, sweeping his hair back. He looks troubled but more bad-boy Sirius troubled than James troubled. Flanking his sides are two beautifully thin THB biddies.
I pretend not to notice him, or the fact he just sat down at a table with even more beautiful girls than me. Like the fucking red carpet at a Witch Weekly event, the next celebrities roll in the Great Hall; Gina, Remus, and Ellen. Remus, like James, bypasses Sirius and sits down with some biddies, Gina keeping a close eye on him the whole time.
Sirius looks unnerved until Liz slides next to him and whispers something in his ear that makes his upset.
“Are you okay?” Abby questions me, putting down her fork.
“Obviously” I say picking up my fork in response; filling my mouth with chicken I’m not hungry for to avoid conversation.
Sirius gets up suddenly from the table. I glance at Liz, whose returns the stare and promptly gets up to sit with some Ravenclaw Quidditch players.
My mind is racing. Something bigger is here. I have a mili-second to act upon it and finally find out some answers that everyone, apparently, already knows.
I swallow the dry chicken in my mouth and get up from the table quickly, chasing after the invisible Sirius, already gone through the doors.
I feel for the first time in the weeks, since James broke whatever we had, that sense that I was part of something important again. It was kind of the sense you get when you become the character of your favorite movie. Enthrallingly mysterious. Like it was night again.
Then again, it being night might help with that too.
I spin in the middle of the deserted hall knowing that someone was about to burst through the Halls after me. I had to decide where Sirius would of headed? Dungeons? Common Room?
My eyes flitted to the up the stairs in the thought process. Outside? I hold my glance to the unlocked, but forbidden doors leading to the dark grounds. He can’t be that cliche.
But he is. Fucking romantic. At the last second I turn around and run straight towards the doors swinging them open then sliding then shut, with the smallest space making the Entrance Hall still visible to me. I have no idea why I’m running or hiding, but I feel like Sirius getting away, when I need him. When I can still get things from him.
The Great Hall opens and reveals: James.
He steps into the moonlight of the Entrance Hall warily looking around for Sirius...or maybe me. Probably both of us. His shoulders slump, hands planted in his pockets his eyes rotate around shrewdly. He focuses on the small slither revealing outside and walks towards me. My heart beats as I feel the chill of February pressing against me on one side and my other flattened to the warmth of the castle door.
He pulls out an old parchment. He’s right next to me now. Against my greater judgment I wait around to see what he’s doing instead of looking for Sirius, who I am now sure is somewhere in the dark grounds. How I will find him is going to be challenge.
He whispers in the softest vocals a kind of melody, but so distinct were the words that they easily floated to me, hidden behind the door outside: “I solemnly swear I am up to no good”.
As he does the doors of the Great Hall open again, and a breathe of relief escapes me as James jumps and swings around, dropping the parchment he held. The opening of the doors release the smallest wind that slides that parchment James dropped through the small expanse of door leading outside to the foot of my trainers.
I shakily pick up the parchment and without thinking, pocket it and run around the castle as fast as I could, silently thanking whoever opened the door of the Great Hall.
The air is crisper and colder than any night. I’m dressed in jeans, a ribbed sweater under a open Gryffindor cardigan, that let every wind chill my bone. Feeling a stitch in my side I finally stop. The only sound in the air was my own panting and the constant shuffling of the leaves, the ever reminder that Winter is still present.
I grab the parchment, saying “Lumos”
My eyes dances with amazement, “Maraders Map” I read to myself. I scan Hogwarts, looking where everyone precisely is. This can’t be real...? But then here I am. On the perimeter of the castle, not far from the West Wing Tower....and according to this, Sirius Black.
“Remus, oh Merlin. It’s just you”
I walk in to the Entrance hall finding James near the door leading outside.
“Bit jumpy? What are you doing here?” My patience with James has been wearing thin. I really don’t want to complain, as I’m not the complaining type (much more Sirius than me) but its been bloody horrible the past couple of weeks.
Between James being distance and moody to everyone, then Chloe being depressed and ignoring me (with every right to), then Gina holding a death grip on me, and the full moon coming soon life hasn’t been to peachy.
“Nothing mate,” James says and starts walking up the stairs. I force myself not to roll my eyes. I know James is lying to me, but I don’t care. He’s been lying to everyone so often I don’t know what to believe.
I’m still standing in the hall when halfway up the stairs, he turns around asking, “Have you heard anything from Chloe?”
“Why do you ask?” I say tiredly, still staring at the wall in front of me
“I thought you guys were friends...” he trails off
“She’s a lot closer to Sirius, you have better luck asking him” I say turning my back to him fully and start to head to the front door.
I heard James mull around the hall for a second longer then turn to head up the stairs yet again. I sign out, some force tells me I need some fresh air.
The night air is cool and refreshing. I feel a strained smile spread across my face. Memories of running through nights like these with friends that felt like brothers. I don’t know if anything can feel as good as that. I don’t even know if it will ever feel as good as it used to. I never admit to not knowing things, I don’t like it. It makes the world seem so vast.
I walk straight, conscious that no one can see me on this dark night. I let my feet drag and think about Chloe.
This is the only time I feel like I can even think about her without feeling guilty. In this dark, wide and empty plane. Where no one can see my grin of pleasure when I think of her soft dark hair, and smooth curves.
I can’t think like this. I love my girlfriend. I will tell her this tomorrow on Valentine’s day. I promised myself that. I think this is the closest I’m going to be to love.
I hear scream to right of me, washed away quickly in the wind. I jog to the spot, quickly pulling out my wand and crouching.
“Sirius? Don’t tell m-” Without thinking I recognize the voice and the name she spoke, and spring up quickly.
I wonder what the heck Sirius is doing on the grounds at this time of night. Then again I shouldn’t judge.
Sweeping over me repetitively was that chilling wind of winter, but i carry on nevertheless, needing to figure out what Sirius knows (if anything), and also to avoid James if he’s still in the Entrance Hall.
My heart beats erratically as I come to spot where Sirius is suppose to be right in front of me. I look up from the map, my wand beam still spilling over the lawn. He’s not anywhere.
I glance down at the map to make sure I’m in right place and looking up I see a dog in the spot where Sirius is supposed to stand. I started screaming.
Before my eyes, the dogs jumps at me, in mid-air transforming into Sirius Black, landing on me very hard.
I am now on the very solid grass Sirius straddling me with his hands covering my mouth.
“What are you doing out here?” He asks in a rush. I pointedly glare at him covering my mouth
“Sorry,” he mumbles, removing his hands and climbing off of me. I take his hand and stand up too.
“What were you and Liz saying that made you come out here?”
“Its nothing, I just needed a run”
I breath in and out the fact that Sirius was a dog five minutes ago hits me.
“Sirius? Don’t tell m-”
“Remus?!” I turn around and scream yet again, this time clinging onto Sirius’ arm. Role reversal, ironic.
“What the bloody hell are you doing out here?” I ask. That came out a bit mean.
“What are you two doing out here?” he asks looking between us. I roll my eyes, getting angry at him.
“Calm down, we’re not in a secret redouvouz like some people you like to saddle next to”. Yes I did refer Gina. Yes I am going to regret that later.
He looks impressed and at the same time annoyed (and also a hint of superiority).
“Yes, how could I forget you love meeting your friends in the middle of dark?” he says raises an eyebrow
That cocky bastard....is he referring to us almost kissing?
“I also love walking my friend’s significance other to my lap and stroke their hair”
I’m not even aware of Sirius now. After all he put me through? Everything he doesn’t know. Every second he preoccupied in my mind, can he say these things to me?
He walks forward glaring down at me, we’re only inches apart, my wand still lit at my side, white puffs of our own breath mingling.
Sirius interrupts this very sexually charged situation. Don’t know if that’s good or bad.
“Wait, what are you holding?” I turn away from Remus and answer Sirius
“What? My wand?” I say already trying to hide the Marauder’s Map under my shirt.
“No this,” Remus says catching my other hand holding the map.
Oh fuck. Shit’s really going to hit the hippogriff now.
“How did you get that?” Sirius says walking next to Remus. I gulp.
“Chloe, this is very important” Remus says
“Don’t talk to me like I’m a child!” I yell back
“For Merlin’s sake can you guys quit it?!” Sirius yells at the two of us.
“Students out of bed?” We all freeze. I can feel my face twist into ‘Oh great this just got a lot more bad’ look.
Turning around we see Flinch with a lantern in his hand, and the look of sadistic joy on his face.
“Detention! Tomorrow night. Nine to Eleven”
“Can he do that?” I whisper to Sirius
“Better him than McGongall. She’ll go nuts” he mumbles back. I glance over to Remus. Oh, he doesn’t look too happy.
Flinch escorts up back to the castle, where he tells us to be for detention tomorrow (VALENTINE'S DAY MIND EVERYONE) and as soon as he’s gone Sirius grabs me and says to Remus, “Excuse us, we have multiple homework assignments to discuss”
Dragging me along the corridor, I start talking “Listen Sirius, I don’t know what I saw, but I’m going to bet its you turning into a human from a dog form, and you know I’m not good at school, but I bloody hell know what a bloody Animgas is, and it doesn’t take a Lily Evans to recognize thats what you are, now the question is why?”
He stops, “Do you...care?”
I look at him confused, “Do I care?”
“Do you care that I’m a animagas?”
“No....” I trail off looking at him confused.
“You are honestly one of the coolest girls I have met” he says breathing out relief
“Sirius, why are you one?” he doesn’t answer me. Guess I have to try another tactic. I learned this deflection process from Gina, so it must work.
“Are you okay?” I ask widening my green eyes for effect
“Wha-? Yeah, of course Chlo don’t worry”
“Its not your family? Or James?” I ask him worriedly grabbing onto his arm
“Nothing like that Chloe, its more-”
“Does Liz know about this?” I say with a slight hint of accusation. Oh yes, that’ll get him.
“Well yeah she knows I’m a bloody dog sometimes. I love her,”
“Does she know why?” This time scrunching my eyebrows and moving my weight to one foot.
“She doesn’t really give much more than two sickles what I do with my bod-”
“-she doesn’t know the real reason?” Now I’m just making this up
“You know the real reason?”
“Course, who does-” I really don’t know what I’m talking about, but he seems too.
“Remus told you he was a werewolf?”
My mouth takes an O-shape. Damn the Gina-defection and its effectiveness.
“You didn’t know...okay. This is bad for me, not so much you. Mostly me at fault here, fuck me”
I still stare at him, letting my brain work in over drive. Yes this makes sense. More sense if I was in the library with a book about werewolves. I look up, Sirius is still talking to himself.
“Wait how does you being a Animgas fit into this?” I ask with surprising calmness.
“Er...well since you know about remedy, no use not telling you about poison in the potion, we help Remus out, you know mentally, us being there to help him through the transformation. So he keeps his mind. It’s crazy, but imagine going through that your whole life...alone. Its Peter, James and I....rat, stag, and dog ”
“Moony, Padfoot, Wormtail, and Prongs...the Marauder’s Map” I nod, “I won’t tell anyone you know”
“I hoped” he replies, leaning against the stone wall. We really shouldn’t be loitering after hours, especially since we just got detention. Sirius seems unfazed by being out at nocturnal hours.
We stand in a silence for a couple more moments before Sirius asks again, “Do you care?”
I don’t need to ask what he means this time.
I shake my head, “It suits him you know. The werewolf thing, everything”
Then I add in an afterthought, “Not that being a werewolf should suit anyone, well you know what I mean”
“I do” he laughs humorlessly
“Why did you need a run tonight then?” I finally ask him the question I’ve been waiting to ask the whole night.
We start walking down the corridor again, our shadows reflect on the stone floors.
“I don’t know. Something Liz told me I guess. We were arguing before about James, she wanted me to spend time with him since he broke up with you, but I really can’t feel sympathy since he broke your heart, and James lately, well he’s been a plain arse. I can’t deal with fighting with everyone. I don’t really want to deal with him, and I feel like I’m the worse person in the world for not wanting to help my best friend through the worse time in their life”
“You’re not the only one you doesn’t help their best friend,” I say bitterly
“Sorry, but what do you think I should do? I mean it would be easier to understand James if I new why you guys broke up”
“I would tell you if I knew myself. Don’t pity me please, I don’t deserve it” I say rubbing my arms with my hands, trying to gather enough friction for warmth.
“I think you deserve a lot Chloe, a good guy especially. Go on that Hogsmeade date tomorrow. Seriously. You don’t want us Marauders, we’re trouble. Anyone can see that from afar”
Then and there I knew he knew about Remus and I. Maybe not completely, but enough to know that we had (have) feelings for each other. He’s standing there and telling me to give up on the one person I can’t say no to.
“I owe you a lot Sirius, and I won’t ever forget it”
I stand in the Entrance Hall, looking down at the sea of awkward greetings, and nervous giggles. It’s blatantly Valentine’s Day . The following conversation occurs as I spot my mysterious, funny, cute, suitor standing with the Slytherins by the Dudgeons.
“I told myself I’d never date a Slytherin, and I really don’t want to break that rule right now” I say
“Shut the fuck up” Liz inserts
“Can it be noted I take offense to that?” Nicole adds
“Noted” Abby replies
Liz tries again, “Maybe he’s not a Slytherin? Maybe he’s one of those Ravenclaws that never hangs out with Ravenclaws?”
Blair comes in and says “No he’s a Slytherin. For the record I also take offense for your previous comment Chloe”
“Noted. What if he asked me out on a dare?” I say
“Nicole, what’s the stats on this guy?” Abby asks
Nicole clears her throat, “Brigham Witte. Six foot, three. Member of the the Conversation of Magical Forest Club, Year Seven, emphasis on studies of Language.”
“That’s it?” I ask
“What else do you want? Likes long walks on the beach?” she snaps back.
“Brigham, Brigham, okay” I say. I walk two steps before turning back to the people I call my best friends. They’re still standing in the line I just left, above everyone else on the steps of the staircase, carefully dressed in combination of gray and beiges hues with a mix of tights and jeans to their own personal taste. The look at my nervous face and each give me their advice.
“It’s too late to turn back”
“He’s fucking hot, do him”
“Don’t judge a book by it’s cover”
“This will make James super jealous”
I look at them all and in a moment that rarely comes across me, I jump on them and huge them all.
“Thanks, really” I say and walk down the staircase into the real world of hormones.
I can feel the stares of the Maraders to the left of me, and the THBs to the right, and well everyone else. I just came to the realization I am James Potter’s ex-girlfriend and I am going on a date before him. On Valentine’s Day. I would appreciate my own major burn on him if I wasn’t nervous to the extreme right now.
Brigham glances at me, just realizing that I’m walking over to him. He grins and meets me halfway pulling me under his arm. I can’t help smiling.
“Chloe Pierpont” he nods, looking straight ahead while we Flich checks our names
“Brigham Witte” I nod back. I feel very smooth right now. I am so sly. Like we’re one of those couples who are also spies.
“Don’t forget about detention tonight Pierpont” Flich growls as we leave. Of course he says that in front of my date. Who doesn’t know anything about me, but the fact I have detention tonight.
“Don’t judge me, I sometimes do bad things” I say to him as we finally leave the castle and get into a carriage to take us to Hogsmeade. I am very aware his arm is still around me in a very casual way. I can only describe it with being in the same room as a Prince who is so rich it doesn’t matter if he impresses anyone else, because he doesn’t need to.
“What was said bad thing this time?” he asks
“Ah, caught after dark on the grounds with Remus Lupin and Sirius Black” I murmur.
He whistles, “You really do live up to your name, don’t you?”
“What are they saying about my name?” I ask
“That you’re the craziest Pierpont in the school. That you are about to de-thrown Gina Domella, that you have an on-going feud with her about some unknown, but a very juicy thing. That your best friends are the biggest bitches to walk to face of earth, that you slept with every Marauder, that your failing out of school...that you’re more beautiful up close”
“Which one of them do you think is true?” I ask in a flat voice. I heard everyone of those things before, but I didn’t know everyone thought that me....the Marauders, my friends.
“You’re more beautiful up close,” he says looking down on with his brown eyes.
“Thanks,” I say breathing softly, reaching over to straighten his hat, he closes his eyes at my touch and I lean in a bit closer, he closes the distance in an instance.
I forgotten how good it is to be kissed, and touched and wanted. I slip deeper into his mouth pulling him closer by tugging on the rim of his hat. His hands picks me up and places me on his lap. My hair falls out of its bun, and wave of curls spill onto his face.
“Sorry” I say
“Mnmh, don’t apologize” he moans, his eyes still closed. I restrain the THB urge to giggle and start kissing his neck. I can feel him trying not to straddle me right here and now.
He buttons my jacket quickly slips his cool hands under dress.
A glaring white light falls down on us. I look up to find a bunch of scarred looking third years waiting for a carriage back.
“Oops” I nervously grin, detaching my self from Brigham’s neck. I feel his hands shoot out from my dress as we walk past the third years in a rush.
He puts his arm over me again whispering, “Well that was highly embarrassing”
I grin, “Just so you know I’m not that type of girl that makes out with a guy she just met”
“Oh I know” he says casually. “I’m not that type of guy either. I never had a girlfriend, you know”
“I had one” I say to make him feel better.
“That, I think everyone knows” he says pointedly.
We walk down the dusted snow covered lane to the village opening towards us.
“You seem to know a lot about me”
“You’re very pretty and you’re friends with a lot of pretty people who actually like you. This makes you well-known on the gossip side of things”
“I never heard of you before...”
“I tend to stay out of the limelight. And away from Typical Hogwarts Birds”
“I am not a THB!” I say defiantly
He shrugs, “I just like the person you are”
It’s the craziest thing, but I haven’t heard someone say that to me in months, and here comes this bloody stranger who likes me and my persona.
Brigham and I walked to this mysterious bar of underageness. I really doubt there is one, I mean the Marauders never mentioned it, and if the Marauders don’t know something, no ones does.
Of course I speak too soon.
Through many side streets and and alleys, we finally find the broken path of Rocher St, and in the middle of small square of snow covered flowerpots there is a bar named “Ar Meisce” and standing outside of it, of course sits Sirius with a cigarette and Remus by his milking his beer.
I start a subject of conversation quickly to avoid talking to/acknowledging Remus.
“So Ar Meisce? What does that mean?”
“Some shit in Gaelic, are you going to say hi to your detention mates?”
“I guess I have to,” I say
“I’ll get us a table inside, it gets crowded sometimes” and with that he was gone. Like he literally left me on side of the road like a lonely prostitute with Remus and Sirius. With me knowing Remus’ huge secret, and him not knowing I know and Sirius knowing I know, but can’t tell Remus, and the sexual almost tension carrying over from New Years, and the fact that I am now single, and the fact me and his girlfriend are feuding about him and on top of all that the fact I am with a guy and ran into him at a illgeal pub. What can you possibly say to someone after all that?
“What’s up?” Remus says like a statement. I guess thats what you say.
“Nothing much, Sirius?” I shrug
“You know, want a smoke?” he asks, Remus looks like he wants to kill him to asking me.
“Sure” Now he looks like he wants to kill me for saying yes.
“You smoke?” Remus asks
“Socially” that’s mostly true. I mean I smoked with Fina so that counts.
I lean in as Sirius lights the cigarette he handed to me with his wand.
“He’s right about the wait being long,” Sirius starts between breathing out smoke, “James and Peter are in there now”
“I never thought the day I’ll see the Marauder's waiting for a table”
“We’re waiting for our table” Remus inserts. Oh Merlin, they have a table. I want to ask a million things to him in that moment, but instead I just take another drag of my cigarette.
“This is very romantic for Valentine’s Day” Sirius says
“I don’t see your girlfriend with you” I say
“I’m going to get Liz later, don’t you worry” he assures me finishing his lit. “I’ll be inside it’s bloody cold” and before I could think he walks inside the pub, leaving Remus and I alone.
“Gina is coming later with Liz” Honestly of all the topics underneath the bloody sun, he picks to talk about he’s fucking girlfriend.
“So?” I say very cool and nonchalantly (or the cigarette does)
He doesn’t seem to have a sufficient answer for me and instead buries his hand in his trench coat. All these considering I find the situation of leaning against snow covered rocks in silent, cigarette smoke the only thing between Remus and I, romantic. I glance at him sideways. Its been a while since I’ve really looked at him and all his glory. Looking at him now I see I’ve tried to forgot how beautiful he looks we his hair combed straight and his perfect posture, and the wonderful laziness he has on days like this with his mouth turned to a down in lack of care.
I finish my cigarette in silence and we walk back inside the pub together.
Immediately I am greeted by a waitress with little shots on a tray, “Something to warm you up with!” she says
Remus and I look at each other before taking a shot each. Things happen. I think Valentine’s Day is now National Lets-Get-Fucked-Up-Day.
Brigham finds me, “Hey I can’t find us a table”
I open my mouth to suggest somewhere else, when a familiar voice yells my name, “Chloe! Over here!”
I turn around to see Fina with beads of hearts around her neck, “Happy Valentine’s Day! Come sit with us!”
“I’m with Brigham here” I nod towards Brigham who stands next to me. She’s obviously stoned and/or drunk.
“My mate Brigham! Not as hardcore as he looks. Come on both of you” she nods leading us away from the door and to her high table with six stools around it. We take the three empty seats and Fina introduces me to her friends.
“Mates, this Chloe, ya’ll know Brigham. Chloe, these are the mates, Bren and Nuzy. Brigham used to roll hard with us, but he couldn’t keep up could he mates?”
Bren was a slim guy with warm brown skin, his black hair covering his eyes, he laughed short and softly, Nuzy on the other hand looked she dropped out of a Scandinavia ad about toothpaste. She grinned hugely.
“You guys look cute together, Brigham’s a good guy” Nuzy says to me
Brigham broke into conversation with Bren and Nuzy while Fina turned me.
“So is the union between you and the Marauders over?”
“I’m kind of done dealing with them and biddies”
“Truer words never spoken. I see you’ve taken my advice”
“What? Fuck men, get money?”
“Except you changed it to Fuck James, get men”
I shrug, not more to say to that, might as well enjoy my Valentine’s day. I drink the wonderfully cool beer as it arrives while Brigham throws his arm around me again. I smile up at him.
“So you want to make out again?”
While we’re snogging I am brought to a simpler time in my head. I like Brigham because he reminds me of James. Besides the Slytherin factor, he is a funny, attractive guy who wants to snog. I have no problem with that. I had no problem with that. Then it ended up a mess with everything, and here I am starting another other mess when I haven’t even started to clean up the first.
I break away with Brigham, using the beer as an excuse, and take a huge gulp. I am having my own little eucatastrophe right now. In the bar.
How am I going to fix my life? I really shouldn’t be thinking about life decisions tipsy.
“Fina, how does one fix one’s life?” Apparently I am quite the dramatic drunk
“Retrace your steps” I look at her puzzled, she explains further, “Go back to the basics, thus you back to reality”
“Pretty sure that’s a song, but okay” Right then and there I decide to go fix my life. Yes in the middle of snogging and drinks and on Valentine’s Day.
“Where are you going?” Brigham asks as I fumble to put on my scarf.
“This was fun, but I have to go back to my life, like way back. Farther than you can imagine”
“You’re funny, I’ll remember that” and with those words I depart from the bar into the clear air. It’s bloody bright out here.
“I need to find Jeff and Gabby” I say to myself. I really wish I had the Marauder's Map right now, who would have it? Remus!
I rush back in the bar, ducking to avoid seeing Brigham (it would involve too much explaining on my part) and ask the waitress, “Four boys, they have their own table, where is it?”
She looks at me, unsure what to think but points me in the direction opposite of the Fina and company. I thank her and walk to the other side of the pub.
Here there is much more smoke and men. Few of them eye me up and down. Gross. Where are the Maraders when you need them?
“Chloe! What are you doing here?”
“Thank Merlin! Peter!” I run up and hug him. Looks like I just ambushed him coming back from the bathroom.
“Peter I need you to do me a favor, go tell Remus Gina is waiting for him outside the pub” I beg
“Yes! But don’t say I told you, say you saw her” Best to lie to Peter, since he is a bad liar himself.
“Sure...wait here” he walks away, and in retrospect, not sure if he’s going to tell Remus.
Apparently he does, as Remus walks into me, looking very surprised.
“Hi, Chloe didn’t know you were still here, I’m about to me-”
“No you’re not. I lied to Peter to get you out here. I need the Map”
“What? No!” he says
“It’s life or living a dead life! situation”
“The Map is-”
“-Come with me if you don’t trust me with the Map alone, but I wouldn’t ask for it if I didn’t need it. Just tell me where Gabby and Jeff are”
He signed, “I wish I could Chloe, but the Map only goes as far as Hogwarts grounds. Gabby and Jeff are most likely somewhere in Hogsmeade.
“Just check to make sure they’re not in the castle of something” I plead, grabbing the front of his shirt. That was probably a little too excessive.
“Fine” he says dragging me with him in the corner. He pulls out the map from his pocket whispering, “I solemnly swear I am up to no good”
I watch him scan with precision the halls of Hogwarts, flipping over the page or turning it upside down every so often. “They’re on a carriage headed towards Hogmeade. They’re with Daniel Heart and Emily Quinn”
“Perfect! Thank you so much. Remus”
“Um Chloe I don’t think you should be going there alone, do you even know the way back?”
“I’m an independence woman, mind you!” I could use some help.
“I’m coming with you, let’s get this over with, stay here let me grab my coat”
He leaves me waiting in a dark corner, and before I know it I start laughing by myself. My situation is so funny. I’m going to spend my Valentine’s Day with Remus Lupin. Too bad it’s not as romantic as it sounds.
“Stop laughing, and lets go” Remus says coming back with his cloak on. He leads the way out, as I roll my eyes following him.
We walked in silence for about five minutes. Firstly because I was still trying to get the affects of this alcohol off, and secondly because Remus was walking so fast in front of me.
“You honestly need to work out a bit more” he says to me
“Sorry we all....don’t have....lean bodies...of...steel” I pant. I really hope he doesn’t take as a compliment.
“See what smoking does to you?” he says walking back to meet me halfway.
“This is not a direct effect of smoking, this is the effect of bad dietary habits. I would know, I want to be a chef”
“I never knew that” he says
“You don’t know a lot of things about me. Are we almost there yet? I swear if I am going to miss them!”
“Almost I can see the main road of Hogsmeade now. What’s so important that you need to see them half tipsy now?”
“Now or never, Mate” I say walking ahead of him.
After another thirty seconds of silence I start again, “I’m starving. On what kind of date do you not get food?”
I don’t give him time to answer, “A bad one. Remus I’m going to give you some valuable advice right now, probably the most valuable advice you’ll get in your life. Always feed a woman. A woman left hungry, is a woman unhappy.”
“Clearly,” he answers dryly.
I see the crowds of students become denser, “We’re here! Do you see them?”
“No, what are you even going to say once you do see them?”
I stop short. What am I going to say? “It’ll come to be in the moment”
“It’s not like the heat of pursuit Chloe...” Remus trails off.
“You’re very sassy”
“Well you don’t have to wander around and watch your ex-best mate’s girl look for her ex-best friends”
“There is a lot of negative statements in that sentence”
“I wish you were sober”
“I wish you were fun”
“There they are,” he signs tiredly. I forgot it was near the full moon, a feel a little bad now. Though its probably not as bad as the pain he caused me as he broke my heart.
“They just went into the Three Broomsticks, lets go!” We follow them in and there is a sea of Hogwarts students waiting for a butterbeer at bar.
“They’re in the corner over there Chloe” Remus helpfully adds (not really)
I walk over to their table and before I know it I am standing in front of my two ex-best friends, as Remus so delicately pointed out earlier, with nothing to say.
“Uh, hi” I say. Jeff and Gabby stare at me with empty faces of shock.
“Listen I’m sorry about News Year, I knew you guys were just worried about me, and I totally understand. I hope you can forgive me for being a mega bitch. I really do. I want to talk to you guys about so many things again. I miss you. Jeff, Gabby, I wish I could take it all back, everything, every second I was making that mistake”
“Would you take back being with James? Would you give up all those memories?” Gabby directly speaks to me for the first time in what feels like ages
I think back to Christmas break, and before that, the start of my friendship with James, us as children, just playful and lonely.
“That’s what I thought. If you can’t take back the guy who ruined the person, the wonderful amazing person, you were, I don’t know how we can be friends. Ever.”
“You know me Gabby! You’ve known me for years!” By now half of the students in the Three Broomsticks were watching us. Jeff just sat and let her yell at me, Emily looked at the floor and Dan Heart was playing with the bottle cap of his butterbeer.
“You smell like alcohol and cigarettes” And with that she got up and left. Dan ran behind her, and I tried Jeff.
“Jeff, you’re my best friend ....you know that” he just walked away with Emily was trying to drag him back to talk to me, but they both ended up leaving me standing alone.
Tears welled in my eyes and came cascading down.
“Chloe-I,” I turn around and saw that Remus was behind me the whole time, and heard everything.
“You’re lucky you have the best friends in the whole world. I know it doesn’t feel like it now, but your friends are going to save you”
He just brought me in his arms and gave me the most well needed hug of my whole life.
For the first time I saw Remus’ composure fail, “Let’s get the fuck out of here” he said.
Hi loves! I missed you all. Hope you missed me as well.
Chloe has found out the Marauder secret! (Finally), but lots more to unravel, such as James' book with the doe charm...
Thoughts on Brigham? Love his edgy-ness or hate his Slytherin-ness?
James' doesn't seem too excited to be single now...or in general.
Like Sirius and Chloe's blossoming friendship?
So is Remus and Chloe finally going to get together...at the expensive of Gabby/Jeff?
Was Gabby/Jeff justified in what they did to Chloe?
Oh, yeah lots of Remus in the chapter :)
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