Chapter 4 : A Knack for Embarrassing Situations
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James and I lasted just over a week before landing ourselves in another detention. As usual, James deserved it and I received mine because I was provoked.
It was a Wednesday, and we'd had a fairly good day. The timetable was halfway decent, double DADA with Teddy... Professor Lupin, free period, and then Charms. James had even been good recently, laying off the pranks in an effort not to get a Howler from his Mum in our first term. There hadn't been anymore moments, as Alice liked to call them, that had made me question if our relationship was more than platonic. We were just like we'd always been - best friends.
Lunch was when it all went downhill though. I could actually blame my bladder for the whole thing because I'd made James go on ahead to the Great hall whilst I went to the loo... and I ended up stumbling into my fair share of embarrassing situations.
It was quite a me thing to do really, James said I had a knack for getting myself into embarrassing situations whereas he had a knack for getting in trouble. I agreed with him. My first kiss is a memory that still makes me blush even six years on.
( And no, I'm not going to relay the tale, it's too mortifying.)
As I was making my way down to the Great Hall after my toilet trip, I spotted a familiar head that caused my stomach to drop. Mark Zabini, a massive twat of a Slytherin, was heading in my direction and I was keen to avoid him. Walking alone past Zabini was never a good idea, he'd first slag you off in front of his 'cronies' and then he'd try it on with you.
And he never got the message when you declined his offer to 'shag in a broom closet'. Because as obviously romantic as that sounds (note sarcasm here) the thought of having sex with Zabini makes me want to vomit. A lot. For hours.
He's attractive enough, but he's so smarmy and... vile that you are instantly put off if you have a brain at all. Which is why he only gets Slytherin and Hufflepuff girls. No offense to the Puffers, but they aren't the most switched on.
So, following my description of Zabini, I think you'll understand why I leapt into the nearby broom cupboard to wait for him to pass. The moment sort of went like this:
"Fred?!" I squealed as I glanced at a familiar face on the floor
"Oh, hi Titch."
"What're you doing on the floor of a broom cupboard?"
As Fred moved to stand I noticed Chang beneath him with her skirt hitched up and her knickers off.
"Oh merlin!" I blushed heavily as Fred pulled his trousers on and Chang scrambled about looking for her knickers. "I'm so sorry! I didn't know anyone was in here! Zabini was... Oh I'm so sorry!"
"S'alright Lise we'd just finished anyway" Fred smirked at me. I gaped at him for a moment before eventually coming to my senses.
"Fred! A broom cupboard? With Chang? Do you have any decency?! You're lucky I wasn't a pair of first years!"
"Bye!" Chang grinned quickly as she escaped from the broom cupboard, sensing my rage at Fred.
"Did you tell her you loved her too?!" I nodded my head towards Chang. Fred laughed and pushed me out of the broom cupboard before him.
"I didn't actually. She was quite happy to-"
"Shag you in a broom cupboard." I finished for him, hoping he'd notice the distaste in my tone.
"Are you disappointed in me?" Fred rolled his eyes as he nudged me in the side. I caught my shoe on a loose slate on the floor and toppled behind a tapestry, bumping into the couple sharing a heated moment behind it.
"Lise!" Drew gasped as he pulled his hand out from under the girls skirt. She pouted at him and flounced off, leaving me on the floor behind a tapestry with Drew, whose flies were undone. I averted my eyes and got to my feet, glaring at Drew.
"What?" Drew furrowed his brows at me as I yanked him out by the wrist towards an amused Fred.
"Oh Lise don't look so upset. You know Drew and I do this all the time" Fred smirked at me.
"She caught you too?"
Fred grinned in triumph. "I'd just finished doing Chang when she came in our broom cupboard."
"Nice!" They high-fived and sensing that they didn't give a damn what I thought of their actions I stalked off to lunch.
"Hey Lise, what's up?" James took one look at my face and shuffled away from me, sensing that if he said the wrong thing he'd end up in pain.
I slammed my bag onto the table and threw a look at Fred and Drew who were entering the Great Hall still discussing their pre-lunch sexual encounters.
"I just caught those two with girls."
"Where?" James asked casually, he didn't seem to surprised.
"Fred in a broom cupboard with Chang, you were right he did shag her. And Drew behind a tapestry with some Puffer slut."
James shrugged at me as Fred and Drew joined us. "I don't get why you're upset though?"
"Because they're using girls!" I glared at Fred and Drew who smirked at me.
"Don't try and teach them a lesson Lise they won't listen" Nick appeared by my side and plonked himself down onto the bench.
"Well at least do it somewhere where people won't find you!"
"Well we can't take them up to our dorm Lise. Be reasonable!" Fred rolled his eyes at me as if I was being ridiculous. "They'll get the wrong idea... think we like them or something!"
"I think she's just upset because she's in love with me and she's jealous..." Drew slung an arm around my shoulders. "It's okay Lise, we can go behind there later and-"
"Shut up Drew" I snapped.
"Ooh feisty" Drew winked. "I like that."
"Don't wind her up Drew she's angry enough" Nick advised.
"Yeah, she's about to explode" James sniggered.
I was about to hit one of them, or hex them, when I heard someone shout my name. I turned on the bench and groaned in disgust as Zabini strutted over.
"Hey Lynch" he smirked.
"What do you want Zabini?" James glared at him, gritting his teeth angrily.
Did I mention James hates Slytherins? Especially Zabini. They have the house rivalry thing down to an art.
"I was talking to Anneliese actually" Zabini sneered, before turning back to me with that smug smile.
"Anyway, Lynch I was wondering if you wanted to meet me later on. Seeing as we're seventh years now I don't see why you'd have any problem with me putting my basilisk into your Chamber of Secrets if you know what I mean..."
I think I just threw up in my mouth. Is he serious?!
"... Because if your interested in making some magic together my wand is at the ready" he winked suggestively.
I stared at him open mouthed, so still I could have been Pertrificus Totalus'd. I glanced at the boys who were sniggering at Zabini's hideous chat up lines. Surely this was some weird dare from his friends or something? Who chatted up girls like that?!
"So Lynch, why don't we go look for the Room of Requirement? Because Hagrid's not the only giant in Hogwarts if you know what I mean."
Before I knew what was happening, James leapt up and punched Zabini in the face, knocking him down onto the floor where he lay screeching and sporting a bloody nose.
"James!" I jumped up and held his arms back as Nick assisted me. "What in the name of Dumbledore was that about?!"
"I didnt like the way he was talking to you" James spat, a nerve in his jaw jumping as he clenched his teeth together to demonstrate his anger.
"He's an idiot James! You should've just ignored him."
"I won't have him talk to you like that."
"Well I admire your chivalry James but I can look after myself!"
"Oi Potter!" Zabini said thickly as he attempted to stem the blood pouring from his nostrils. "I think you've made it obvious how much you want to stick your wand in Lyn-"
Nick held James back at the same time as I lunged forward and hit Zabini straight in the balls. He screamed in pain as all the boys in the newly formed audience winced collectively as they felt his pain.
"I hope Zabini, that I've broken your wand so badly even the Elder Wand can't fix it" I sneered at him. The crowd around me erupted into laughter and victory cheers.
(Brief moment of Gryffindor pride here.)
I smiled as James pulled me in for a congratulatory hug, noticing Fred and Drew were crouched down on all fours they were laughing so hard.
Then there came the all too familiar, "Potter! Lynch! Detention!"
And so James and I found ourselves under the half-blind watch of Argus Filch, the decrepit caretaker who'd been here since Mr and Mrs Potter's time. Apparently he was only a Squib, so nobody really understood why he was still around.
He'd wheezed out instructions to us and left us sat on the floor of his dingy office, left to sort out the files of all those who had misbehaved in the last century. Joy.
"You know James" I said as I flicked absent-mindedly through a file, checking it's contents all had the same name on the top. "I don't know why I'm still friends with you. You're always getting me in trouble and sometimes I doubt if you're even worth it."
James snorted and gave me a look to suggest I was an idiot. "I'm definitely worth it."
"What do I ever get in return? Death wishes from your fan-club?" I said scathingly.
"You should be honoured that they find you enough of a threat to send you death wishes."
I found it hilarious how James didn't even attempt to say he didn't have a fan club. Not only was he Harry Potter's first born, which had sparked the initial interest back in the days when boys and girls weren't interested in each other in any sort of way other than friends (ahem first and second year!) But he'd also grown up to be Quidditch Captain, one of the most popular Gryffindor's, mischievous (the girls loved a bad boy type), and one of the hottest guys at Hogwarts.
Don't tell him I said that though, his ego is big enough already.
"They should find me a threatening! I am your best friend after all. Not to mention I'm drop dead gorgeous and you're obviously in love with me..." I sniggered. "Did you hear that a sixth year Ravenclaw asked me if I'd shagged you yet? Apparently every girl in the school thinks I'm a lesbian or mad if I haven't tried it on with you."
Surprisingly, James didn't smile, he just switched his attention from the file in his hands to me. "Why haven't you?"
I blushed. "What? Well... You're my best friend..."
"Didn't stop my Uncle Ron and Aunt Hermione. Or my Grandparents Lily and James either" James frowned at me.
"I didn't think I was meant to want to try it on with you" I bit my lip. "Why haven't you tried it on with me? I know I haven't got a fan club or anything but some boys have showed some interest..."
"Yeah, they show interest because your gorgeous Lise."
My jaw dropped as I gaped at James. My heart was in my throat, hammering away as if to try and alert me it was in the completely wrong place. Was I panicking? Or nervous? Excited? Recently with James I'd found it difficult to understand my emotions.
"Thanks" I stammered. There was an awkward silence between James and I, something that was very rare, so I decided to occupy my fingers with another file. I glanced at the front and gasped.
"Yeah?" he leant over to see what I was staring at and gasped too. "James Potter! That's my grandfather!" he pulled the file from my hands and began to flick through it.
"I think you're dad was right when he said you were like your grandfather" I snorted. "Your files are almost identical in width."
"Look! Theres loads mentioned about Sirius Black, Dads godfather!" he grinned as I handed him the next file which was just as thick as both James'. "Wow, this was Sirius'. They were badass!" he muttered away to himself.
I was jealous of James, I wish I could have mountains of family who were famous for something worthwhile, like Mr Potter was for saving the entire world and being the Chosen One, than for stupid things that my parents were famous for, like Quidditch and singing. I could try to find my fathers file, but I knew he'd never been much of a trouble maker, instead just a Quidditch obsessed loon.
"James?" I interrupted his mutterings over his Grandfather and Sirius Black. "Why did you want to know why I wasn't drooling all over you?"
He grinned cockily. "Well, every other girl is so..."
I nudged him with my elbow, shooting him a glare. "Seriously James."
He was silent for a moment, before licking his lips and leaning closer to me. "I dunno, I guess that you always hear about best friends getting together in the end and I just wondered... I mean, I've heard the stories about Dad's parents.. They got together in seventh year."
"I heard the stories too, James. They weren't best friends before. James loved Lily, she loathed him."
He shrugged. "Technicalities. But the point is, that does happen to some best friends..."
"Doesn't mean it has to happen to us" I smirked at him. "What did you think would happen anyway? We'd look at each other one morning over breakfast and fall madly in love just like that?"
"I just... well I'd like something like it... something proper..." he sighed defeatedly, running a hand through the back of his hair. "I've been with loads of girls Lise, you've watched me, but I've never felt anything proper for them. I just... I just want to know what that feels like."
"Well don't ask me, I've never had it either. I always seem to go for the idiots."
"Would you like it?" James asked quietly.
"Of course I would! I'd love to be in love James, but who knows whether it'll ever be at Hogwarts? I'd be surprised if the love of my life is someone I know now."
James and I both spent a moment thinking over what I had just said. "We never have talks like this Lise."
"I know. It's because we're not soppy people. Maybe that's why we haven't fallen in love with anyone yet."
"I'm glad I have you Lise" he threw an arm round me and I leant against him.
"Because I accompany you to detention?"
He smirked and played with a strand of my hair. "No actually. Because you're the only person I feel like I can talk about this kind of stuff with."
"What about Fred?"
James snorted. "You talk to Fred about shagging or snogging techniques. Not feelings, or about relationships. I think he'd die on the spot if I tried."
"So that's why you've kept me around!"
"There is more than one reason" he murmured so softly it was as if he was telling himself it. So I ignored the comment and continued to sift through the files cuddled up with James for the next hour or so.
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