Pretty much the whole school knew about what had happened. Jake Hunt and Hayley Potter were an item. James Potter had found out and had tried to hurt Jake. As a result, his own sister hated him. Meanwhile, Amelia Kingston and Hope Murphy had a catfight over Sirius Black. Kingston won but as a result, betrayed her best friend. That was the story. Lily mulled over what had happened as she and Amelia sat their dorm, fixing up her injuries. Sirius and Remus were nowhere to be seen at the moment but they’d find out. Hope had vanished, but no-one really cared. Lily had cleaned up most of her injuries. She was just tending to Amelia’s hair, which was a rugged mess after Hope’s dealings with it.
“You know Amy,” Lily said after she’d helped Amelia re-grow her strands out using her wand. “My mum is a hairdresser and she’s taught me a lot. If you fancy a new style, then I’d be happy to help you out!”
Amelia looked in the mirror Lily had provided. Her hair was quite dull and lifeless. It meandered aimlessly around her shoulders and although she loved it, there was too much of it. Way too much of it. It was time for a new look.
“You know what Lily. I fancy a change. Cut it. Short.”
“How short you thinking?” Lily grinned.
“On a scale of Hayley to me?”
“Shorter. But with a fringe?”
Lily gulped. Now was not a good time to tell Amelia she’d never cut hair using magic.
“Yeah sure. I can manage that for you, no worries.”
Lily set about Amelia’s pixie, shearing carefully with her wand. Long strips of her deep brown hair fell to the floor, as Lily worked. A couple of times she thought she’d cut too short, but Amelia gave her a wicked grin so she evened it out. By the time she was finished, Amelia was almost unrecognisable. She studied her new hair. It was closely cropped to say the least, and as Amelia ran a hand through it, she was surprised by her prickly it felt. Although Lily’s pixie had grown out a bit, even if it hadn’t, Amelia’s was noticeably shorter, almost giving her a boyish appearance. Amelia’s fringe however, was long and sweeping, covering large parts of her face. She grinned at Lily and admired her hair. She’d had it cut short before, but that was only for a short while when she’d been younger. And even then it had only been a bob, nothing even close to this short.
“Well, let’s unveil the new you to the world!” Lily suggested.
Amelia was nervous at first. Something like this wasn’t really her forte. But she soon relaxed as several people told her how amazing she looked. She grinned as she saw Remus and Sirius whose jaws dropped more than a mile. Remus went red and muttered something about pretty before Sirius took over.
“Wow, am I really lucky enough to have you as my girlfriend because you are a stunner! I mean seriously Amelia, you just look absolutely stunning babe!”
“Thanks Sirius. And look, I’m sorry about earlier…”
“No worries!” Sirius cut her off. “James told us what happened and I should’ve realised you needed space. But seriously, you chose me over Jake?”
Amelia flushed slightly. “I didn’t mean to Sirikins, I just got angry and didn’t think about the consequences. Is he mad at me?”
“No one has seen him or Hayley since her fight with James,” Remus explained.
“Where’s James?” Lily asked, concerned.
“Oh yeah.” Both boys looked shifty. “We told him we knew about Jake and Hayley and well, he didn’t take it great.”
Lily groaned exasperated with the tactlessness of the pair. She escaped the conversation and headed out of the common room, following her instincts as she attempted to find James and help him out. He clearly needed help right now, as everything seemed to be collapsing for him. She found him in a spare classroom. There wasn’t long until curfew, so Lily knew they were gonna have to shift. James looked vulnerable, something she’d never seen in him before. He wasn’t crying but there were certainly tears in his eyes and he couldn’t look her in the eye. She sat next to him and put her arm around him. James turned to face her.
“What do you want Lily?” he sounded tired, beaten.
“I just came to check on you James. I’m worried about you!”
“Why? It’s not as if you two shits about me. After all, you were more than happy to keep Jake and Hayley a secret, along with everyone else!” he snapped.
“Look James,” Lily found herself tearing up. “I like you, okay. I know I’ve not always given you the best impression and then all that shit happened with me and Jake but that’s done with. I do think that you’re a good guy James Potter but how could I tell you? It wouldn’t be fair on them when I promised not to. It broke my heart as badly as it annoys you!”
James contemplated her words and turned to face her for the first time.
“Look Lily, I’m flattered you think I’m a good guy but what does that mean for me? I’ve got enough people keeping secrets from my in my life Lily so just tell me what’s happening with us or I’m walking out the door.”
“James, what do you want me to say?” Lily asked. “I like you but I don’t know enough about you. I mean sure I could imagine myself liking you and maybe even being with you but I just don’t know if that’s possible or if we could or would work out as a couple. I don’t want this to end a good thing if neither of us are sure.”
“I’m sure,” James replied, staring into her vivid green eyes with a passion and warmth that made it impossible to doubt him. Lily punched herself metaphorically for thinking that. She wasn’t going to set herself up for another fall so soon after everything that had happened with Jake.
“Look Lily,” James brought her back down to earth. “I want to get to know you better and Christmas is just around the corner. Why don’t you come to my place over Christmas and we can get to know each other better and maybe decide if a relationship is the right thing for us?”
Lily’s stomach turned. On the one hand, the idea of two weeks alone with James Potter terrified her but also excited her. What was so bad about liking him? Lily was going to punish herself for that thought at a later date. Why? Why the constant punishment? You should be allowed to like James. Lily knew this was a bad idea and had to consider other factors.
“Who else will be there? And besides James, I can’t just run away for two weeks with every guy I have a crush on!”
FUCK! Lily berated herself mentally as she was never this careless. James’ face lit up.
“So you do have a crush on me? Anyway…” he turned the conversation, seeing Lily’s clear discomfort. “I doubt my darling little sister will want to see me and right now Sirius and Remus can fuck off!”
“James, I just don’t know…”
Yes she did. Lily knew she wanted to give James a chance. She had to. He’d liked her for as long as she could remember and now she liked him…
“Lily, just look into your heart. You know the answer to this.”
“Ok James. We’ll give it a shot.”
Hayley couldn’t sleep. Her and Jake were lying on the bed in the room of requirement, both of them contemplating the consequences of what had happened. Neither of them could quite believe it. Hayley’s guilt was keeping her awake, guilt that she had burned the bridge with her brother. James had only meant to look after her, was she rash to assume that she didn’t want him in her life? Screw that, she told herself. James had never treated her like a human being and now she was finally standing up to him. Unlike her boyfriend, who was still stinging from the wounds James had inflicted. Not that Hayley minded. In a way she was glad Jake hadn’t retaliated but it would’ve been nice to see some fighting spirit, to see Jake beat the crap out of her brother would’ve made everything seem right.
“I love you,” she whispered, the only words that she could muster right now.
“I love you too. I’m really sorry Hayley this is all my fault.”
“No!” Hayley retorted. She wasn’t going to let Jake blame himself for this mess. “We both knew it would get out sooner or later and we both made mistakes along the way. Neither of us should point the finger at ourselves because in truth we’ve both screwed up. But relationships are about screw ups and sometimes you just have to look past the mistakes and focus on the good bits. You know?”
“What if I can’t?” Jake stuttered. Hayley turned to look at him, uneasy by this. He was clearly struggling. “It’s not you Hayley, I know we just have to move on. But what about Amelia?”
“You believe what Hope said? That lying cow has done enough damage!” Hayley snapped.
“She admitted to it Hayls, what am I supposed to think?” Jake replied, his voice eerily quiet and emotionless. Hayley was worried. When Jake was angry it showed he cared. He wasn’t angry.
“I think that are you going to let 15 years of friendship go to waste over this?” Hayley tried.
“Exactly Hayley. 15 years and now I’m second best in her life. She was happy to let us break up or for James to intervene as long as her and Sirius…”
“Don’t make accusations Jake!” Hayley snapped. “If you think I’m going to let you ruin your friendship with Amelia without establishing the truth then you can go to hell!”
“And if you think I’m going to let you hate your brother because of me you can go to hell!” Jake retorted. That’s better, he’s fired up now, Hayley thought.
“James dug his own grave. Amelia was backed into a corner. Now if you don’t talk to her tomorrow then consider this,” (she gestured to her body) “Off limits.”
“Yes babe?” Hayley’s tone left no room for questioning her.
“Say that one more time Hunt and I might just decide to give you a permanent sexual ban!”
“Ha, sounds like a deal!”
The mystery behind Hope’s disappearance was solved shortly after breakfast. As it turned out, she’d spent the night with Tony Meadan, a Ravenclaw who was more than up for a night of passion with Hope Murphy. Although to be honest, almost the whole male population of the school were. Hope went and sat beside Lily, who regarded her with distaste. Everyone else stared at her in almost hatred.
“What’s wrong Lils?” Hope enquired.
“Look Hope, I’m your best friend but what you did was completely out of order! Amelia and Sirius are happy together and you had to go and try to mess it up. Plus, you nearly killed her by setting Snape on her! Why did he agree to that anyway?”
“Lily, don’t be mad…” Hope decided to come clean. “I told him that if he broke up Sirius and Amelia that I’d help him get together with you!”
This revelation had the Gryffindors on their feet. Jake and Hayley weren’t present but the three Marauders were all on their feet, fury clear in their eyes. Amelia didn’t react. She as good as knew that already but in amongst the chaos of the previous night she had forgotten to tell Lily. Or Sirius. Oops. Lily sat there for a moment, staring at Hope. Then she punched Hope in the nose. A loud crack told everyone it was broken.
“For fuck’s sake,” Hope muttered under her breath. “I just fixed that nose. I’m sorry Lils, you have every right to be angry with me!”
“You know what Hope? I don’t care. Amelia’s been a better friend to me than you ever could be!”
Hope had no arguments. She felt bad. In every single sense of the word. Her stomach churned with pain, she was still wincing in pain from where Amelia had injured her and worst of all, she had betrayed and let down her best friends. Lily hated her and with good reason. Hope stood and trudged out, leaving her food untouched and her dignity in tatters.
Amelia was relaxed, alone in the common room. Well, as relaxed as she could be. Everything had worked out, right? Jake and Hayley were still a couple, she and Sirius were stronger than ever… And yet it didn’t feel like a victory. Hope had destroyed the one thing she thought she could never lose, her friendship with Jake. Well, she guessed so anyway. She hadn’t seen him since Hope’s revelation and the look on his face at the time had said it all. It was her own fault. She should’ve said something to him and Sirius, they could’ve worked out a plan or at least given Jake and Hayley the chance to come clean. Instead she’d blundered in and attacked Hope, thus taking any chance Jake and Hayley had of preparing themselves. Why was she so fucking impulsive? The portrait hole opened. Oh joy, Jake. No doubt here to read her the riot act.
“Hi Amy. Can we talk?”
“If you want!” Amelia retorted. She hit herself internally. Why was she making it hard for him?
Jake seemed taken aback by her snappy tone but proceeded to sit next to her on the sofa. He didn’t move too close and Amelia compounded this by moving further away.
“Tell me what happened,” Jake’s voice was tender but it was cold. Amelia winced at the coldness.
“Make it quick Amy.”
Amelia suddenly felt something click inside her. Who was he to order her about? She’d made a mistake but he was not being fair. It was as if he’d already given up on her.
“I’ll be as slow as I want thanks Jacob. If you want to listen I suggest you stop interrupting.”
“Look, I’m here because Hayley told me to give you a chance!” Jake snapped. “So please don’t make this hard!”
Amelia slapped Jake. Jake blinked, her face barely able to control the increasing flow of emotions within her. She was furious with him, extremely hurt and also very guilty at what she’d done to him. If her slap had hurt, he wasn’t showing it. But never, in their whole friendship, had either of them lifted a finger against the other. Yes, they duelled and had fun but they’d never tried to purposefully hurt the other before. Jake was stunned and Amelia was confused. So she went with her most powerful emotion, anger.
“If you only want to talk because your pretty little girlfriend told you to then get the fuck out of my sight Hunt. Now I don’t want to ruin this friendship, so until you actually want to sort things out, stay away from me.”
“Fine. That’s exactly what I intend to do!”
Amelia looked up but he was already gone. She knew she’d done it again. Fucking impulsive. That was her. And yet at the same time, he’d been different, he hadn’t been fair on her. What did she expect? She’d basically told him he didn’t matter to her that much anymore. No she hadn’t. If he’d given her a chance to explain he would’ve known that. Yes this was probably her fault but he was the one being stupid about it all. And yet if she’d just gone along with it, explained, she could’ve fixed it. Instead she’d slapped her best friend. What the bloody hell was wrong with her? Amelia found a comforting arm on her shoulder. It was Lily.
“People make mistakes Amelia. You have to decide if he’s worth it!”
“Of course he’s worth it!” she retorted. “Sorry Lily, I know you’re only trying to help.”
“He’ll come around Amy. Just you wait and see. Just give him time.”
A/N Well well well. Jake and Amy? Lily and James? Hope and everyone else? Who knows if anything will be the same again... 2000+ reads guys and lets try to keep the reviews coming :) Keep reading and I hope you enjoy reading as much as i have writing. HP
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