I watched them as they climbed the staircase, being careful to make sure they didn’t see me. It isn’t that I’m a stalker or anything, only that I believe images are captured through a lens much better when the main characters are unaware that the image is being taken.
I took a deep breath and inched my head around the corner of my hiding place, my eye fixed through the sight of my camera. It was almost as though the camera was drawn to the couple, as though it found the obvious adoration they had for each other magnetising. I snapped the capture button with my index finger and held it for a moment, waiting for the full moving image to be recorded, and then pulled the camera away from my face.
I inched my whole body around the corner and as I did so somebody tapped me on the shoulder. I spun round; suddenly very fearful I’d been caught in the act. I was met by a scarred face, deep red lines scratching across the skin like thin strands of frayed rope. He looked far older than he should have done, with tight features and even wrinkles developing, and that’s what made Remus Lupin such a good subject for me.
“Adrian,” Remus smiled as he recognised me, “who is it you’re stalking with that camera now? I saw you hiding in those shadows.”
“Oh, nobody,” I said hurriedly, dropping my camera so it fell to my stomach, the strap putting weight on the back of my neck.
“You don’t need to lie to me,” Remus laughed. I let out a small smile, blushing red slightly as I realised I’d been caught red-handed. Remus knew exactly who I had been photographing, he was just seeing if I would own up to it.
I gestured at the couple, who were stood talking to a smaller boy with beady watery eyes and a shock of mousy brown hair, I knew him as Peter Pettigrew.
“I was photographing them,” I admitted to Remus.
“I thought so,” Remus nodded, “why is it you’ve suddenly taken a liking to them?”
I ran through the multitude of answers that I could give in my head. Perhaps I could just shrug it off and say I just wanted a change, or perhaps I should just tell the truth and hope Remus wouldn’t laugh at me. Remus wasn’t one to laugh at others though I remembered, perhaps it had something to do with his own ragged appearance and strange disappearances each month, and that’s how I based my decision. I would play it straight with Lupin.
“They photograph beautifully,” I explained, “I’ve taken tens of photos of them and every time the light has caught their faces in a different way, reflecting their every emotion fantastically. I like to steal moments from people, and their moments, they seem so unique.”
“I see,” Remus nodded thoughtfully.
I hadn’t told him everything. I hadn’t told him about the way the girl brushed her strawberry blonde hair from her shoulder, or the way she looked at the boy with her blazing green stare, or the way she held herself when she was with him, her body language showing a mix of both anxiety and excitement whenever he was close. It was all of these things that made me want to use up my expensive film on them.
“I’ve seen you though Adrian, for days now you’ve been hiding in the shadows, following them, I’ve never seen you so enraptured by one of your subjects before,” Remus interrupted my thoughts, pulling my gaze away from the girl who was sharing a joke with Pettigrew, her smile flashing across her face and reaching her emerald irises.
“I suppose you’re right,” I nodded.
I couldn’t explain it to Remus, not in a way he would understand at any rate. I had photographed hundreds of people, stealing short moments from their lives, and yet I had never been so captivated by a subject, two subjects in fact, in all my days of being a photographer.
It wasn’t just the girl that amazed me; it was the boy as well. He was tall and well built, his muscular frame almost rippling the fabric of his robes as he shifted. He moved with a casual elegance, his strides definite yet graceful, and he had these striking grey eyes that when angry bore into objects with a glare that could drill a hole through diamond but when happy lit up with a light that could possibly rival the aurora borealis, or as it is more commonly known, the Northern Lights. He was quite a piece of art when it came to photography.
I watched, feeling a smile wrap around my lips, as the pair of them smiled at each other, their eyes glistening with an obvious desire for each other’s touch. I picked up my camera and pressed the shutter button down, stealing another precious moment from the couple’s life.
“You really are fascinated by them, aren’t you?” Remus laughed as the camera fell back to rest on my stomach.
I raised my camera and snapped an image of Remus’s grinning face as a response, showing I desperately didn’t want to admit to Lupin how much I was totally mesmerised by the couple. He shook his head but he understood.
“Well, I best be off, got places to be, enjoy yourself,” Lupin smiled, patted me on the back, and climbed up the staircase to meet Pettigrew and drag him away up another staircase.
That’s when the boy took the girl’s hand in his and began leading her back down the staircase, right towards me. I didn’t have time to pull into the shadows nor did I have time to turn and run, so I just stood there, like a rabbit caught in the headlights. The pair stopped as they reached me.
“Hey Ade,” Lily Evans smiled. I blinked. Lily was my friend, she had been since the first time we had sat together in Defence Against the Dark Arts, but still, every time I saw her, her bright green eyes seemed to blow me away, rendering me incapable of forming any words for a moment or two.
“Hi Lily,” I managed eventually.
“Cat get your tongue?” Sirius Black asked, his eyebrow arching. Of course, Sirius Black had proven to be quite the photogenic being, but his personality did not quite measure up.
“No, I just…” I gulped.
“What have you been taking pictures of?” Sirius cut in.
I steeled myself, I didn’t want to sound weak, that was how Sirius Black picked his victims, for Sirius Black was a bully, along with his crony James Potter, and I had no idea how Peter Pettigrew and Remus could bring themselves to be friends with such awful people. I guess it was because they didn’t see Potter and Black as bullies, but as pranksters, class clowns if you would.
“That’s none of your business,” I replied.
“Oh really, I guess it probably would be my business though if perhaps, you were taking photographs of me?” Sirius Black sneered, “right?”
“Sirius, don’t be so horrible, Adrian is my friend, you know that,” Lily said, a spot of anger morphing her features. I had to fight the urge to grab my camera and snap a picture as she did so.
“Whatever, come on Lily, we’ve got to get to class,” Sirius growled and tugged Lily past me. She offered me an apologetic glance as she went by but did not look back as I turned round to watch the pair vanish down the corridor.
Photographs are not just images, they are stolen moments from a person’s life or an object’s existence, and, when compiled together, form an entire story, a story that when looked over completely give a picture that perhaps couldn’t be seen before, at the first person perspective.
There is a reason I’ve been photographing Lily Evans and Sirius Black. There is a reason I have been hiding in the shadows, following them. There is a reason that I have been so obsessed by them over the last few days.
Sirius Black is a bully, a tormenter, a tyrant, but nobody sees it, nobody, especially not Lily Evans. As I said, Lily is my friend, my good friend, and I know that Sirius Black will hurt her, he might well break her heart, and that is my reason behind my obsession.
I am going to show Lily a different perspective, and I’m going to show it her today, all I have to do is develop my film.
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