No, I was not talking to Benjamin. I shouted this to my Quidditch teammates. Five of them were messing around after practice. The sixth was trying to get their attention before our surroundings bathed in orange light dimmed into darkness.
I felt a little proud of myself when the Stevens siblings stopped trying to smack each other senseless and the third years stopped gossiping and giggling. Even Sirius stopped tapping our teammates on their right shoulders from their left sides and flying away before they turned.
“Potter, continue,” I said calmly and not as if I just yelled loud enough to be heard by my father.
James looked at me with the same bewildered expression he had whenever I used my outside voice, then turned to face our teammates. He gave the usual speech about how we were doing well, but our next game was in a few weeks and we had to be prepared to play Slytherin, probably in a snow storm.
I tuned out of James’s spiel, having heard these ‘pep’ talks by him and the captains before him. I noticed Benjamin, sitting on the stands, watching me from far away. I averted my gaze before he noticed that I was giving him attention.
My brain then thought about Sirius. He seemed normal enough now, but I feared on what might happen to me once I was on the ground. He had yet to ‘tutor’ me today, and I still had Charms homework that I needed to complete for tomorrow. I didn’t want to waste an hour or two trying to guess the spell Sirius was trying to teach me. I’ve actually taken that long to think of spells and then perform them to Sirius’s standards. I hope that boy never becomes a professor.
“Alright, you lot,” James said, his change in tone telling me that he finished the standard speech and I should resume paying attention. “We can’t get onto the pitch tomorrow, so I’m having us practice bright and early on Saturday morning. Team breakfast in the Great Hall at seven, and in the air by eight. Any questions?”
Paul raised his hand. “Yeah, can Sirius not wake me up that morning? I can get up on my own.”
“What’s the matter, Stevens?” Sirius laughed, moving to hover next to the boy Beater. “Afraid of little old me?”
“Nah, just your morning breath.”
The girls, including me, all laughed.
“No promises there, Paul,” James said, though there was a glimmer of mischief in his eyes.
Normally, I want to switch lives with anyone, but I did not want to be in Paul’s shoes on Saturday.
Paulina led the way down to the ground, aiming for the broom shack and the locker rooms. Most everyone followed her. I decided to stay in the air. Hopefully Sirius would get too involved in some Marauder business and I could escape tonight. Besides, the waning moonlight should be bright enough for me to avoid flying into the hoops.
Sirius followed the crowd, flying close to Paul. He was probably going to ask him about his supposed ‘morning breath.’ Another good sign that I might be forgotten tonight.
“Hey, Kulinski?” James was the only one who didn’t join the crowd to the ground. He actually flew up to me. “Can I have a word with you?”
“What about?” I asked. My heart started hammering. Did I do something wrong in practice today? Did he ask me something during his speech just now and I didn’t answer, and now he wanted to scold me privately? Is he tired of me yelling at the others for him? Did he want to kick me off the team?
“It’s about Sirius-”
“Merlin’s beard! I, er, I just remembered. I have to finish that Charms homework! Sorry, Potter, but I have to go!” I aimed my broom and went into a moderate dive.
Okay, James didn’t want to talk to me about Quidditch. But I could have handled the Quidditch topic. I could not handle a ‘Sirius’ conversation right now. I would much rather do the Charms homework.
“So, what’s got your wand in a knot now?” Benjamin asked, appearing and standing against the door frame to the girls’ locker room. “I thought you were going to do some moonlight flying.”
“Potter wants to talk to me about Sirius.” I landed rather hard. I stumbled a bit to recover, then put my long legs to good use, escaping into the locker room before James landed. Maybe I could hide out there until he was gone.
“Wait, that’s not too bad! I like talking about Sirius too. And- Hello, James Potter! I think I’ll wait out here with him. Give you your privacy and all that.”
Joy. I planned to spend the next few hours in here. Maybe I could take a nap. I’ll need one if I intended on doing my Charms homework tonight. Not even back a week and I was behind.
Dear Merlin, I have the best life. Love Marta.
As I rounded the corner, all thoughts of James and the conversation he wanted to have vanished from my mind like a good banishing charm. I stopped, in full view of the three girls who were huddled together and whispering softly.
Paulina’s back was to me as she continued to do most of the whispering. Wendy’s attention was focused solely on the fifth year. Erin, though, was facing the entrance. When she saw me, her jaw dropped a bit and she elbowed Wendy.
In an instant, their whispered conversation ceased. Paulina looked over her shoulder. Her cool gaze alone told me that she didn’t want me there.
Not feeling welcome anyway, I shed my scarlet robes and started changing back into my school uniform. I threw my slacks at the base of my locker. It wasn’t like I went anywhere but in the air with them anyway. Who would really care that the Gryffindor Keeper wore wrinkles slacks?
“Uh, Kulinski?” Erin’s soft voice sounded close. “Uh, I was wondering, or rather we were wondering, um, if maybe you wanted, uh, like, if it wasn’t too much trouble, but if you wanted to hang out with the three of us-”
I adjusted my winter cloak, slammed the locker door, and headed for the exit.
“I told you she was stuck up,” Paulina’s voice carried around the corner. “Just because she’s better than us on the pitch, she thinks the rest of us are beneath her . . .”
I almost turned around right there. I didn’t know if I would have yelled at Paulina, slapped Paulina, or broken down and sobbed in front of her pretentious face. Like she had any right telling others that I was stuck up.
“That was quick, Kulinski.” James emerged from the boys’ side of the locker room, also redressed in his school robes. The silver clasps on his outer cloak were still undone. He made no sign that he realized Benjamin was standing next to him, mirroring his stance. “I thought for a bit you might have tried hiding out in the girls’ locker room until I would go away.”
“That had been my original plan,” I muttered softly.
“What was that?” James asked.
“Nothing!” I looked around him, expecting to be ambushed any second. “Uh, where’s Sirius?”
At the mention of his best mate, James crossed his arms, though his expression remained neutral. “I think he went ahead. But now that we’re on the subject-” He let that part hang, probably waiting for me to speak about our ‘relationship’ first.
“Alright Marta, now is when you tell James Potter that he can’t have you, because you’re now Sirius Black’s girlfriend.” Benjamin also moved to cross his arms over his chest. Unfortunately, he made no effort to hide his smirk.
Sighing, I pulled out my white gloves, white scarf, and black cap. “I think we shouldn’t stand still while outside. I don’t want to catch pneumonia because of you.”
I’ll say this for him, the bloke took his Quidditch players’ health seriously. He kept pace with me as we walked back up to the castle. The snow that had fallen during the break still crunched under our shoes. It also reflected enough light so we could see each other clearly in the dark.
“I just wanted to ask you about Sirius,” he finally said. “He’s my best mate, you understand. I don’t want him hurt.”
I nodded. I understood the logic. I could only dream of having that kind of relationship with someone.
James hesitated a moment, letting me have a chance to speak. When I didn’t, he went on. “Trust me, it was surprising to hear Sirius call you his girlfriend.”
I nodded again, though I winced at the term. I certainly didn’t think of Sirius as my boyfriend. Maybe a boy friend, but not boyfriend.
James stopped us just as we got to the entrance hall. “I saw that, Kulinski. Now tell me, truthfully, whose decision was it to start your relationship?”
“Tell him yours, Marta. Yours.”
“Sirius’s. I swear, it was all his idea.”
“Not from what I heard. He told me that you were the one who brought up boyfriend/girlfriend stuff in front of him.”
I sighed. He was hearing all this from Sirius? Well, I might as well explain to him what his best mate has been up to for nearly the past two months with the Keeper of his Quidditch team.
It only took a few minutes, and I felt like I was humiliating myself even more by explaining how Sirius found out I couldn’t remember how to do even the most basic of spells, but James just listened calmly. He looked surprised when I told him about showing Sirius a secret passage out of school, and he nearly laughed when I told him about a few of the more ‘memorable’ situations Sirius had put me through just to ‘teach’ me something anyone else in our year would remember instantly.
When I finished, James still had his arms cross, but his grin was reminiscent of the expression he made whenever he had a brilliant idea for a prank. “All I can say,” he said slowly, “is that I never thought I’d hear the day when Sirius would willingly tutor someone. But his methods don’t really surprise me in the least.”
“It’s not ‘tutoring,’ and it’s not amusing.”
“Oh, well I think it is!” James actually had the nerve to laugh. “What I wouldn’t give to see Sirius’s handiwork in action.”
At once, I looked all around us, making absolutely certain the two of us were indeed alone. So far, the entrance hall to the castle appeared deserted.
“No worries, Marta, the coast is clear. Not a soul around. Besides the three of us, of course.”
“So that’s why you’ve been a little jumpier than usual,” James said, snapping his fingers.
“Huh?” I turned to look back at my captain. “What do you mean?”
“Nothing!” James said quickly. He ruffled his hair in the back, a sign he was either feeling flirtatious or nervous. Knowing he wouldn’t flirt with anyone besides Lily, I think he was feeling the latter. He recovered soon enough. His entire attitude sobered. “Kulinski.”
James took off his glasses. He rubbed at his eyes. He then replaced his glasses. “How do you feel about all this? I don’t want Sirius hurt, but I also don’t want-”
“Your Keeper off her game,” I finished for him.
“No.” James offered a weak smile. “We’re not just teammates only. The seven of us are all friends. At least, that’s how I feel.”
Friends? I thought of Paulina, who would probably think her brother smacked her in the head too many times if she heard James imply that she was also my friend.
I looked down at my gloves. I was reminded of Hogsmeade. More specifically, Gladrags Wizardwear. If only I had more control over Benjamin, more control over myself, I probably wouldn’t be in this position.
“I’m okay with it,” I said softly. I pulled off each glove, placing them deliberately in their corresponding pockets. “Beggars can’t be choosers, right?” I pulled off my scarf, rolling it around my wrist before pulling it off and stuffing it in with my left glove.
“But what about Remus?”
I was in the process of pulling the cap off my head. I paused only long enough to make sure my face was composed, then placed it in the pocket with my right glove. “What about him?”
A loud groan emanated from James. When I looked back up at him, he was looking up at the stone ceiling. The shadows from the torchlight made it look like shapes were dancing up there.
“Look, Kulinski,” James said slowly, “I understand that you’ve been a long-time friend of Remus. You’ve known him longer than anyone else has at school-”
“Eight years, two months,” I said automatically. “Practically half our lives.”
My mind turned to an old memory. Sterile halls. Small rooms. White beds. An eight-year-old boy covered in bandages, staring blankly at the ceiling. No one else in his hospital room. Amber eyes that, when he noticed me standing in his doorway all those years ago, looked at me with a mix of sadness, fear, and hope.
Three emotions that my eight-year-old self shared with the then-stranger. Sadness of being left alone in St. Mungo’s because of my father’s supposed ‘concern’ for my mental health. Fear of reminding there forever, with only Healers to ask me more stupid questions after stupid questions. And hope of finally finding someone else, my age, that could possibly replace the imaginary friend that was forced to abandon me on Halloween night.
All at once, I wished that I hadn’t removed the cap, scarf, or gloves. I pulled my winter cloak closer around my body, my only protection against the chill of old memories.
James’s hand on my left shoulder snapped me out of such memories. “Kulinski?” His voice sounded unsure. “Are you okay? Do you need to see Pomfrey?”
“No!” I backed away. Then, realizing how I must have appeared, I forced myself to relax. “No,” I repeated softer. “I’m okay. But Remus and I are just friends. We can only be just friends.”
“Okay,” James said. He released my arm. “But-”
“Ouch! You don’t have to pinch me!” I took my left shoulder in my right hand, rubbing the spot.
“I didn’t pinch you.” James frowned at me. “How could I anyway? You’re wearing too much to be pinched like what you’re implying.”
“I guess you’re- ouch!” This time it was my opposite shoulder. “There it is again! Something’s pinching me. Ouch!” My right leg jerked back.
“Oi, Prongs!” Sirius walked up to the two of us, his wand aimed at me. “Good practice. But our ‘New Year's Resolution’ requires us to get to work.”
James broke out in a wide grin when he saw Sirius. “And you expect to do that with her tagging along?” He inclined his head towards me.
“Are you daft?” Sirius shook his head. “But who says we can’t plot? Slytherin is taking the field all afternoon tomorrow, preventing us from practicing. I think they should be reminded on the rules of fair play.”
“A Marauder, talking about fair play?” I asked. “You- ouch!” Another pinch, this time on my stomach. “Sirius!” I stepped forward, intent on taking Sirius’s wand away from him.
“Oh no you don’t,” Sirius said airily, moving his body to block me with his left side. His wand reminded safely in his right hand, as far from me as it could get. “I want you to disarm me by means of magic, Marta. How else are you going to learn anything?”
“Potter!” I turned to James. “See what he puts me through? This is just stupid! Tell him to cut it- ouch!- out.”
I knew it was useless when I opened my mouth. One didn’t need to be a genius to know which ‘friend’ James would support. Ouch!
“I don’t think this is stupid,” James said. “I think it’s clever. Gives you proper reason to disarm him, doesn’t it?”
“I thought so,” Sirius said. “Now Prongs, about the Slytherins-”
“Ouch! Give me your wand!”
In a typical Marauder fashion, they went on to ignore anything that didn’t involve them giving the Slytherin team a hard time tomorrow. I eventually took out my wand, and after a hint from Benjamin telling me to ‘expel his arms,’ I remembered the disarming spell and tried to use it on him.
“Nope,” Sirius said, not even looking at me. “My wand didn’t even twitch. Okay Prongs, I can get the triggering spell in place. Any detection of too much body odor and repugnant slime from their grimy selves-”
“Or you can trigger it to go off whenever anyone goes into the boys’ Slytherin locker room,” James cut off his friend patiently.
“There’s that too.”
Benjamin eventually got bored. He had started off leaning against a wall, but after ten minutes, he slide down to the floor. “You have to will yourself to disarm him, Marta,” he sighed, examining the end of his scarlet-and-gold tie. “You have a good enough wand technique, but your desire isn’t there. I’d almost think you like being pinched.”
“Ouch! Do I look like I’m having fun?” I snapped. “Expelliarmus!”
Sirius glanced at me. “Okay, that time I felt something. I think.” He smiled. “Keep trying.”
“Yeah, Kulinski, keep trying,” James snickered. He nodded to Sirius. “Join me when you’re done with your girl friend, alright?” Still smiling, he turned and went back outside into the freezing winter weather. By the way he walked with a light spring to his step, I could guess he was still laughing at me.
“Some friend,” I grumbled. The only reason I didn’t completely detest him at the moment was because he put in an audible space between ‘girl’ and ‘friend.’
“Yeah, he’s a great friend,” Sirius agreed whole-heartedly. He didn’t seem to pick up my sarcasm. “Alright. Marta, at least you know the word, but you need to want to disarm me.”
“Ouch! What do you think I’ve been trying to do for the past half hour? Ouch!”
“Prongs and I were plotting for a half hour?” Sirius checked his watch. “No, it’s only been twelve minutes. Though I do admit we usually spend no more than five minutes working out the details of our pranks. I wonder what made us take so long tonight-”
“Maybe- ouch!- because you stopped every- ouch!- five seconds to smirk at me when- ouch!- you thought I wasn’t looking! Ouch!” I then rushed forward, intent on grabbing Sirius’s wand by force.
“Hm, you might be on to something,” Sirius said while keeping his right arm far out of my reach.
“Ugh, just forget it!” I turned away from him, intending to just walk away. I was tired of playing his games.
“Hey Marta, wait for me!” Sirius, and the pinches, followed me as I ascended to the second floor.
“I’m not in the mood for your ‘lesson’ tonight!” I snapped at him, stopping. I pocketed my wand and crossed my arms. “Go ahead, pinch me to death. I’m terrible at magic, I know that.”
“You’re not terrible at magic,” Sirius said plainly. “You just lack confidence in yourself.”
I groaned, just as Benjamin came up the stairs behind Sirius. “Did I miss anything?” he asked. “Sorry for zoning out on you.”
Frustrated at both boys, I turned to continue up the stairs.
Sirius blocked my way. “I want you to disarm me before you go,” Sirius said. “Or use any other spell you can think of to get me to go away.”
“Won’t you just listen to me when I tell you I want you to go away?”
“Maybe,” Benjamin said slyly, winking at me, “your subconscious wants you to spend the night with Sirius. Sure, you’ve only been a couple for a few days, but you’ve been meeting this way for months-”
I screamed in frustration, fueled by Sirius’s persistence and Benjamin’s taunting. I turned, but not to go up or down stairs. There was a bathroom nearby. And unless Sirius couldn’t read the sign, he would keep out.
“Marta, why are you going in there?” Benjamin hurried and followed me into the girls’ lavatory, leaving Sirius at the threshold as he shot one last pinching spell at me.
“Ouch! Just go away, Sirius!” I rounded the corner. I went to the first sink I came to, but no water came out when I turned on the faucet. “I walked into the broken bathroom, didn’t I?” I grumbled.
“I was wondering if you realized that in the first place,” Benjamin sighed. He hopped on the edge of the sink and started studying the faucet. “I think the toilets work, but don’t expect to be able to wash your hands here.”
“Fantastic.” I kicked the base of the sinks and stalked to the stalls lined up in the back. Tonight just wasn’t my night.
And to make my night even more fantastic, a high-pitched moan emanated from one of the cubicles. “Diana! Here again to try to ‘console’ me and then tease me behind my back?”
The annoying, squeaky voice echoed off the walls as its owner floated through one of the bathroom doors on my right. Her silvery form still wore old Hogwarts robes, a Ravenclaw crest faded but still distinguishable. She sniffed away some ghostly mucus, though her eyes continued to glair at me as she pushed up her glasses.
“I- I’m not Diana,” I said, confused on this ghost’s behavior. Most of the dead in the school just leave me alone. Even ghosts have favorite students, I suppose. “I’m Marta. Marta Kulinski.” At the mention of my mother, my right hand reached around my neck and found her sapphire pendant.
“Oh?” The ghost’s hard stare softened somewhat. “You sounded just like Diana Greengrass.”
“She was my mother.”
“Oh?” Her tone of voice had sounded like she was going to back away. Instead, she rushed forward. She brought her face so close to mine, I could count several zits on her chin. “So Diana Greengrass broke her oath and actually got married, did she? Oh, how lovely for her while I’m still a ghost!”
“You knew my mother?”
“Perfect Diana? Of course, that busybody,” the ghost huffed. “Pretended to care about everyone in our House, but she only cared about getting the next ‘O’ on her papers.” She sniffed. “She soon got tired of listing to poor me.” With that, she floated over to the sinks. “A student that needed help but that everyone ignored until I died!”
I looked to Benjamin, wondering if he was seeing this. There was a ghost in the bathroom.
But for once, Benjamin wasn’t paying the slightest bit of attention to me. His gaze rested on the ghost. His frown deepened as the ghost let out a short wail.
“What’s wrong?” I asked.
“This ghost is-”
“I am dead, that’s what’s wrong!” The ghost turned back and rushed me again, forcing me to take a step back. “I am dead! And nobody cares!” She broke into tears. As she flew past me, the left side of my body felt like it had fallen into the frozen Black Lake. “Nobody cares about poor Myrtle!”
“That’s for certain,” Benjamin agreed.
I had been in this bathroom for less than two minutes, and already her wailing was getting to me. I reconsidered whether or not I wanted to hide from Sirius in here or face more pinching spells. Let’s see, sore eardrums or sore skin all over? Sore eardrums or-
“Merlin, won’t this Mudblood give it a rest? So she’s been dead for a few decades! That’s nothing! And besides, did this blubbering, stupid, ugly little girl expect to make friends while she was complaining about how terrible her life was?”
“Benjamin!” I snapped. I stomped towards him. “What have I told you about-?”
“Benjamin?” Myrtle stopped her wailing instantly. As I turned back to her, her eyes were wide. “You know a Benjamin too?”
Myrtle’s question made me pause. Myrtle might be a ghost, but she could still talk to the living. I was proof of that. What if she told someone else? I opened my mouth, intent on telling her that she must have heard me wrong.
The worried look in Myrtle’s eyes stopped any words from escaping my throat. Her silvery hands formed worried fists just under her mouth. “You’re Diana’s daughter. You look like her. You sound just like her. And she also knew a boy named-”
“That’s. Enough.” Benjamin now stood himself, another being who wasn’t physically in the bathroom. He looked more real than the ghost beside me, though.
A choking sound next to me refocused my attention. I looked back to Myrtle. Her hands were now over her mouth, her fingers scraping her white skin as if trying to rip something off from her lips. Her eyes looked all around, looking for the source. They finally rested on me. She looked at me with absolute terror. Her gaze slowly traveled down to my sapphire pendant, still resting outside my robes.
“You were killed in this bathroom, Myrtle,” Benjamin said darkly. He came to a stop beside me. “As a Mudblood, you don’t even deserve the right to remain as a ghost! Out of my sight!”
“Benjamin!” I screamed.
All the stall doors opened, their echoes reverberating through the bathroom for several seconds. A cold wind whipped past me, dropping the temperature several degrees in a matter of moments. A gurgling came from the toilet in the stall that Myrtle had come from just minutes ago.
Myrtle squeaked in terror, the sound being lost in her ghostly throat, as the toilet water shot out of its home and headed straight for the poor ghost girl. It enveloped her and, in a feat that I thought was impossible, pulled her back into the toilet. Her screams continued to sound from her place somewhere in the U-bend.
As quickly as it had happened, everything seemed to revert back to normal. The stall doors all eased back into their semi-open positions. The water that remained dripped lazily to the floor, which formed a tiny stream towards the floor drain.
I took a step back, away from all that happened and what I just saw. My jaw continued to hang open.
Benjamin turned to me. There was no apologetic look in his eyes. Those hazel orbs remained stone cold. He narrowed them at me. “I. Hate. Mudbloods.”
For once, Benjamin’s language did not ignite an anger within me. It only terrified me. I shook my head back and forth, not believing what I had just seen. This was impossible. How could my imaginary friend have such power?
“She deserved it, you know.” Benjamin inclined his head towards the stall. “She was annoying. She deserved to die all those years ago, and she deserved tonight’s terror. That was the price she paid for leaving the safety of her Muggle world behind.”
And then, Benjamin smirked. He stood tall, as if he had just accomplished a noble task.
“No,” I whispered. I took another step back. And another. And another.
Finally, Benjamin looked back at me. His smug expression lingered for a second. Then, he seemed to come to his senses. His eyes dimmed. The smirk was replaced with a frown. “Marta, did I startle you? I’m-”
“You monster!” I turned and ran out of the bathroom. I had to escape him!
With the water on my shoes, running became a bit risky. I couldn’t get a proper grip as I rounded the corner, and I nearly smacked Sirius down to the ground.
“Took you long enough to come out,” Sirius complained loudly. “What-” He paused to take a better look at me. “What happened in there? And why are you all wet?” His wand remained at his side.
Sirius wand flew out of his hand, arced through the air, and landed in my outstretched fingers.
“You’re disarmed. Happy now?” I turned and chucked Sirius’s wand at Benjamin, who was just running out of the girls’ bathroom.
The wand, predictably, vanished through the hand Benjamin put out on instinct, only to clatter to the floor just behind his heels.
“Just stay away from me!” I screamed at him. I turned to continue running. But my shoes were still slippery with water.
I tapped each shoe, and the water evaporated in an instant.
I then continued to run. Down the stairs. Through the entry hall. Across the snowy grounds. To the broom shack. I charmed the door open before I reached the handle.
“Come!” I snapped. My broom obeyed, flying off the wall and into my waiting arms.
I was in the air two seconds later, heading for the closest hoop.
I didn’t realize I was shaking until I rested myself against the pole, just below the circular hoop. I wrapped my right arm around said pole, not wanting to be blown off course.
“Marta!” Benjamin ran onto the field and came to a stop directly below me. He arched his head as far back as he could to shout up at me. “Marta, I’m sorry!”
I closed my eyes. What could I do to finally be rid of him?
“Marta?” Another voice followed me up to the hoops. Sirius came to a stop before me, hovering just out of arm’s reach. He looked up at me cautiously. “Look, I’m sorry about that, Marta. I went too far, I guess-”
“It’s not you,” I said softly, my voice surprisingly even as I spoke. “It’s just . . .” But what it was, I couldn’t tell him. I could never explain to anyone what had just happened.
Sirius let out a short laugh. “I guess I have to learn how to listen to ‘no,’ don’t I?” He shrugged. “Having a girlfriend isn’t easy.”
“I’m not an easy girlfriend to have.”
“Come on.” Sirius offered his hand up to me. “It’s freezing tonight. James will kill both of us if we’re sick for Saturday’s practice.”
My judgment told me to stay at the hoops. The air was my only safe escape from Benjamin, the only place he could not follow. Besides, I could have asked Sirius what the heating charm was. He probably would have told me after the way I acted.
But since he was here, and not running off to tell everyone how crazy I was, I released the pole and put my hand in his. He guided me down to the ground, back to the broom shack.
As Sirius helped me back to the castle, we passed by Benjamin. His eyes pleaded with me, silently begging me to forgive him. When Sirius and I got close to walking through him though, he let out a sigh, turned away from me, and walked away. He took just two steps before disappearing completely.
I made myself walk closer to Sirius. If being with a fellow Pureblood would help keep Benjamin from remaining with me at all times, I would be willing to date Sirius for the rest of my life.
I never knew that one could feel delighted and disgusted at the same time.
A/N: Aloha! Long time no author’s note, I suppose. Well, we’ve reached the tenth chapter, and I can’t resist having a few words with you lovely readers.
First of all, I’d like to thank blue_splash, DetectiveMenace, Harmonia, and rosepetal704 for their multiple reviews! You all have helped me know how I’m doing, what impressions I’ve given out, and also pointed out some things about Benjamin that I made sure to clear up. I probably wouldn’t be this far into the story if you didn’t review and let me know someone cares about what happens next, encouraging me to continue. So here’s a special thank you for all of you!
And an extra special thank you goes to dirtydeedsdonedirtcheap, who has reviewed every single chapter of this story! Thank you so very much! If I could, I would send you some of your favorite treats and a bunch of hugs! (Or, if you don’t like hugs, a lot of friendly waves and smiles!)
And I want to just thank everyone who has even just read this story! I really like sharing my little hobby with the world, and I’m delighted you’ve stuck with me this far. If you could, please leave a review and tell me your thoughts. They could be predictions on where this story will go, impressions of the characters, typos that I overlook and accidentally post, anything! I won’t bother you anymore here, but a girl can be quiet for only so long before she needs to say something in her own voice. Aloha!
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