Chapter 34 : Chapter Thirty Four
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Hope everyone had a good and safe New Year too. ;-)
I froze at the doorway, paralyzed it seemed. My eyes darted towards Henn, pleading for help, but she looked just as hopeless as me. How did she find out?
“Why?” Gaby cried, sinking to the floor and looking up at me with watery eyes. It startled me to see her like this, vulnerable, and weak. Perhaps there was a side to her that never was shown except for rare occasions like this, when her brave and strong shield would break down and crumble. “Why?”
“Gaby,” I said softly, stepping forward and trying to look comforting. I bent down and slowly reached towards her shoulder, which was shaking as she dug her face into her hands, sobbing. My fingers barely grazed her shoulder when she backed away suddenly, standing up and trying to look defiant in her feeble state.
“How long?” she said loudly, turning around and stumbling slightly in her robes. She looked at each of us, as if we were criminals, and I suppose we were. She cricked her neck towards me, stepping forward so that she was right in front of my face. “Tell me, Lily. How long have you known?”
I wanted desperately to lie to her, to tell her that I had just recently found out but I was still mustering the courage to tell her. But the way she was staring at me with such anger blazing through her eyes, you could still see that deep down she was hurt. I looked down at my hands and said slowly, “For a while.”
I backed away into the wall, glancing at her and saw that her lip was quivering. I thought that maybe her knees would give way again. I looked at Henn, who was trying to approach her, but Gaby moved out of reach.
“Don’t you get it?” Gaby said angrily, spinning around again until her eyes landed on Grace, who looked solemn. “You three, you’re supposed to be my friends! How could you do this to me? How could you?”
“We tried--” Henn started, but was cut off. She glanced at me, then at Grace. Had we really tried? Were we really that brave to do so? The truth was, we were afraid of hurting her feelings, or that she would get mad at us like she undoubtedly would. But this was much worse. Henn gulped, starting over. “We tried to, Gaby--”
“You tried?” Gaby screeched at us. “You didn’t try! When did you try?”
I stayed silent; I knew that she was right. Gaby glared at Henn, who swallowed and looked down at her hands. She was ashamed, like I was.
“You could’ve told me! Are you telling me there weren’t enough chances?” Gaby asked incredulously. “We share the same bloody dormitory!”
“Okay, Gaby.” Grace suddenly said, looking furious. “Maybe we didn’t try hard enough. But tell me; would you have believed us?”
Gaby opened then closed her mouth, looking sulky. “That doesn’t matter.” She growled.
“Yes, it does.” Grace said, finally moving to the center of the room and facing her. “It does matter, because you know, and all of us do also, that you wouldn’t at all. You’d be mad. You’d hold a grudge. You know you would.”
“You still could’ve told me!” Gaby screamed. “That’s what friends do!”
“We were trying to protect you!” Grace yelled back.
“Stop it!” I yelled. “Stop!”
“You’re supposed to be my best friend, Grace!” Gaby’s eyes were watering again, and she wiped her tears away. “You’re worse than Jack!”
“It is! You know it is!”
“Gaby…” Henn said weakly.
“I hate you!” Gaby screamed, then turned to Henn and I. “I hate all of you!”
She shoved me out of the way, sobbing and slamming the door shut behind her with such force, it knocked the vase that was by the door over. I heard her staggering through the hall, wailing as she went. I had never seen Gaby cry like that.
I turned to look at Henn, who was squatted down by Grace, holding her in her arms. Grace’s shoulder shook as she sobbed also, her face contorted as tears overflowed her face and raced down her neck.
“It’s okay, Grace.” Henn said soothingly in her ear, as I bent down also so that I was at eye level with her. Her blue eyes looked back at me, red and swollen. She opened her arms and I immediately reached over and hugged her tightly, her salty tears soaking my shirt.
I had never seen Grace cry like that either.
I don’t know how the next day everyone woke up to another day, when the night was so much worse. The sunlight still soaked through the window, shining through the crack in my curtain and illuminating my skin. I opened my eyes groggily and reached towards my rubber band, feeling that it was necessary.
“Lily?” I heard Grace say as I shifted in my blankets, opening the curtain and seeing that Gaby’s bed was empty and neatly made, just as she left it. Grace was sitting on the edge of her own bed, looking far different from the state that we left her to sleep in. She wasn’t crying, but she looked grave and dark circles were left under her eyes.
“Morning.” I said, snapping the rubber band one last time before getting up and going to her. I sat next to her, patting her shoulder slightly.
“Are you okay?” she asked me. It was rather ironic that she was asking me that, since she had felt the worse the day before. But she was still Grace, depressed or not.
“Yes. Are you?” I said, just as I heard Cecilia turn over in her bed and let out a snore. I winced, rolling my eyes and then returning my attention towards her. She didn’t answer me; instead she looked at her fingernails, studying them. I was guessing that she had wakened up much earlier, since she was already in her robes and her hair was brushed and clean. “You don’t have to go to school today.” I reminded her. She looked at me, widening her eyes.
“That would be considered skipping.” She said, in her stern prefect voice. I felt rather ashamed to be advising her that, since I was Head Girl and was always bashing James for not being a responsible Head Boy. I cleared my throat.
“Yes, but maybe you need a resting day.” I said slowly. Once I heard my voice, I cursed myself.
“Is that what you did?” Grace asked, although I knew it was more of a statement because she already knew the answer. She was looking at me suspiciously. “You weren’t really sick, were you?”
It was another trick question. Damn it.
“No.” I said heavily. “I wasn’t.”
“But Gaby--” she began, but stopped. She frowned, furrowing her eyebrows. “She gave you the medicine.”
“Yeah, I know.”
“You didn’t need it.”
“Lily,” Grace groaned, leaning her head back and closing her eyes. “Why do you do these things?”
“What do you mean?” I said, suddenly offensive.
“You know, these things.” She said meaningfully. I narrowed my eyes at her. Right. By ‘these things’ she meant dumb things. Stupid things.
“Well. I’m going to get ready now.” I said sulkily, standing up. Grace stood up also.
“I’ll see you later. I’m going down to breakfast to see if I could find Remus.” She said, looking down. “I want to tell him what happened.” She finished softly.
“Okay.” I called out to her retrieving back. “I’ll see you later.” I thought of how usually Grace would go down to the Great Hall with Gaby, since she was more of a morning person than Henn and I. I sighed, walking into the bathroom and brushing my teeth.
“Good morning.” Henn yawned at me, just as I was going to flick my wrist again. I cursed inwardly.
“Morning.” I said, taking the brush that was set on the table and going through my hair.
“How’s Grace?” Henn asked, trying to sound nonchalant so that none of us would worry as much. I shrugged, but she got the message. She looked at Gaby’s neatly made bed and sighed, noting the same thing I did.
Once we were both ready to go down to breakfast, which I noticed, I hadn’t eaten in a very long time in the Great Hall; Patricia woke up and staggered towards us, her blonde hair messy in a bun. She smiled slightly at me and I smiled back; today I felt like I should be nice to the girl.
“Let’s go.” Henn said, and we both made our way towards the door. Before leaving I pointed my wand at the broken vase, so that it came together again and looked unharmed. We shut the door behind us and slowly walked down the stairs, feeling a sick feeling in both our stomachs.
As we were passing by the sixth year girls’ dormitory, the door opened and out came Kat and Leah, looking quite awake. I suppose they were morning people like Gaby and Grace.
“Good morning.” Leah greeted us, Kat looking quite grim. I noticed that each day she’d steadily grow more and more unkind to me, something that sort of hurt. I tried to look indifferent though, smiling at both of them.
“Morning.” Henn said. Leah bit her lip as she closed the door, following us as we made our way down the spiraling staircase. As we arrived in the common room, Leah moved so that she could walk alongside with us, and that’s when I noticed she looked rather grim also.
“Listen,” Leah said, before either of us could open our mouths. “Gaby didn’t want me to tell you this; but last night she came to sleep in our dormitory.”
“She’s up there now?” Henn said quickly, turning so that she was facing the staircase again, then looking back at Leah. Leah nodded.
“Yes, we got some extra blankets and we made a bed for her on the floor.” Leah said. “We also stole some pillows from the common room…”
“Didn’t your dorm mates disagree?” Henn asked. It was common knowledge that practically all the sixth year Gryffindor girls were rather like the Love sisters, always looking up to them and wanting to be the new ‘it’ twins although know of them were twins. They all hated Gaby, except for Leah and Kat, probably because they were jealous that she dated Sirius and Jack from Hufflepuff, a boy they all found to be very handsome in their year.
“We cut them off.” Kat said, waving her hand impatiently. “They’re all dimwits anyway.”
“Hm.” I said.
“Anyway, don’t be surprised if she cuts class today.” Leah said, and then glanced at Henn. “And don’t go up after her; I don’t think that will do her any good.”
“Alright.” Henn said uncertainly, following us out of the portrait hole, where Jinx was roaming about and purring at our legs. I patted his head as we passed by, jumping into the hallway so the Fat Lady wouldn’t close the portrait on me.
“What happened?” Leah suddenly asked. “I mean, anyone who was in the common room could hear someone screaming in the girls’ dormitories, but no one knows who and why.”
“A lot of rumors are probably going to be spreading today.” I said grimly. Leah nodded.
“What I don’t get,” Henn said slowly, looking thoughtful. “Is how did she find out? The only other person who knew was--”
“—Sirius.” I finished for her, just as we rounded the corner and saw Sirius himself. I narrowed my eyes at him, then without thinking, Henn and I both simultaneously started to run the hallway to meet him.
“What? Wait!” Leah called behind us, but we ignored her and kept running, leaving her behind with Kat.
“Black!” Henn said loudly, making him stop his conversation with James and turn around with raised eyebrows. I gritted my teeth once I noticed James was smirking at me, still triumphant from the night before. I scowled at him and turned to Sirius instead.
“Hullo Henn.” Sirius said pleasantly, grinning at both of us.
“Did you tell Gaby?” Henn demanded. Sirius grimaced, scratching his head slightly as we both stared at him in horror.
“Well, not exactly…” he started. Without warning Henn grabbed his shirt, bringing his face towards hers.
“What?” she spat at him.
“Whoa, take it easy.” Sirius smirked, looking far from uncomfortable. Henn shoved him away, crossing her arms and glaring at him. James was giving me that ‘look’ again.
“Black, what did you do?” I asked tiredly.
“I didn’t tell her.” He said, rolling his eyes.
“Yes, you did.” Henn scolded. Sirius gave her an innocent look, but she was still glaring at him. He then sighed in defeat, shrugging.
“Well, not in person…”
“Black!” Henn and I yelled at the same time.
“What did you do?” I asked incredulously. “Send her a note?”
“Yes, actually.” Sirius replied simply. I stared at him.
“What did you write in it?”
“I said that she should talk to her friends about her boyfriend.” Sirius said in a rather casual voice for someone who just committed a heinous crime. “Hey, I left it anonymous.” He added in a defensive voice.
“You left it anonymous?” Henn asked incredulously. “What are you--”
“—A five-year old?” I finished for her, but noticed that I wasn’t the only one who said that. James and I quickly averted our eyes, blushing. Sirius laughed openly.
“Shut up.” James growled.
“Whoa. Is it your time of the month or something?” Sirius snickered. “Ha…Hey!” Sirius ducked, the spell barely missing him. James pocketed his wand grimly.
“We’re off the subject here.” Henn said, rolling her eyes. “So, what? I don’t get it. She didn’t talk to any of us about Jack.”
“What exactly…happened?” Sirius asked, looking from me, to Henn, then back to me.
“None of your business.” I snapped.
“Of course it is, I caused it didn’t I?” Sirius said humorously.
“What’s wrong with you?” Henn asked in a disgusted tone. “You should regret what you have done.”
“Regret?” Sirius repeated incredulously. “Hey, you were asking for it. I’ve been warning you for a whole month--”
“Well it’s not exactly easy to go up to one of our best friends and go ‘Hey, how are you? Oh, by the way, you’re boyfriend’s cheating on you’.”
“What? Gaby’s boyfriend is cheating on her?” James asked in a confused voice.
“James, shut up.” I snapped at him.
“Hey, don’t start with me, Evans.”
“Both of you shut up.” Henn said through gritted teeth. I gave her an offended look, but she ignored me and turned to Sirius again. “Okay, so what happened? She didn’t talk about Jack with us.”
“How am I supposed to know? I just sent her a bloody note.”
“A note that made her want to stop being friends with us!”
“That’s your own fault.” Sirius said decisively, crossing his arms indignantly.
“Henn, calm down.” I said, getting a grip on her arm as she stepped towards Sirius, looking as if she wanted to slap him. “If this dimwit didn’t tell her directly--”
“Dimwit? Dimwit my arse.”
“—then she must’ve seen something.”
Henn widened her eyes. “You’re right.” She said slowly.
“Sirius,” I said suddenly, turning to him. “Who is the girl Jack’s cheating with?”
“Why ask me? I’m a dimwit, remember?”
“Stop being a git.” Henn growled at him.
“Merlin. Are you having your time of the month, too?” Sirius asked, having to duck again because this time two jinxes went flying at him. He stood up again, furrowing his eyebrows. “Okay, fine. But why do you think I know?”
“You have to.” I said matter-of-factly. “You’re the one who found out about this whole fiasco.”
“So? That doesn’t mean I know who the girl is.” Sirius replied.
“Then how did you find out?” I asked. Sirius looked reluctant to answer. “Sirius, tell me.”
“Fine, okay.” Sirius said finally, sighing in defeat. “I didn’t see the girl, but I heard him and his mates talking about the arse meeting her during that one visit to Hogsmeade.”
“Which visit?” I asked suspiciously.
“The one in February, a few days before Valentine’s Day.”
Henn gulped, exchanging looks with me. We were helping Gaby shop for Jack’s present that day in Hogsmeade, when we saw him with his friends. We thought he was getting a present for her.
“Oh, no.” I said softly.
“We need to figure out who this girl is.” Henn suddenly said.
“Why would you want to?” James asked, surprising me because he had been uncharacteristically quiet practically the whole conversation. “Ignorance is bliss, remember?”
“So we could make her life a living--”
“Henn.” I said warningly. “We don’t want to do that.”
“Of course we do.” Henn said, frowning. “Then maybe Gaby will let go of her grudge.”
“You know that she won’t.” I said. Henn grunted in reply.
“Look, I did my part.” Sirius said.
“I guess your part was ruining everything then.” I spat.
“Evans! I told you to tell her, this is your own doing.”
“You know what?” I said, narrowing my eyes and poking him in the chest. “You’re helping us.”
Sirius raised his eyebrows. “With what?”
“What else?” Henn asked incredulously. “With finding the girl!”
“Why should I?” Sirius asked in his quirky manner.
“Because we’ll tell Gaby you sent her that note.” Henn said. James and I gave her an incredulous look.
“That’s blackmail.” Sirius said, but looking far from threatened. He actually looked quite amused for us thinking of something as low as that. “But okay, I guess I can help.”
“You too.” Henn said suddenly, jabbing a finger at James.
“What? Why?” James asked indignantly. “I’m not romantically tangled with Gaby or am I friends with her.”
“I’m not romantically tangled with her!” Sirius protested.
“You heard this whole conversation.” Henn narrowed her eyes. “You’re definitely helping, Potter.”
“He doesn’t have to, Henn.” I said quickly. I didn’t want to spend extra time with James. James however, looked at me with amusement.
“Don’t want me to come along, Evans?” he mused.
“No, that’s not it--” I began heatedly.
“Okay, I’ll help.” James said, cutting me off. I gaped at him.
“You’re doing this just to get on my nerves.”
“Yeah, pretty much.”
“Okay, no one breathes a word of this to anyone.” Henn said, preventing me from talking any further. “This is going to be a surprise attack.” She had a mad gleam in her eyes of adventure, reminding me slightly of a commander telling his troops in battle their attack plan onto the enemy.
The bell rang, followed by Sirius’s groan. “Look what you ill-tempered girls did? I missed breakfast.”
“You’ll live.” I said breezily, turning around so we could walk to Transfiguration. I was still thinking of how James was smirking at me, though.
“Right, okay.” Sirius said. “I’m just telling you, this plan better be good.”
“It will be,” Henn said, grinning at me. “Just wait.”
She opened the door to the Transfiguration classroom, and we all walked inside. I sat by Henn, glancing at the seat that Gaby usually sat at, next to Grace. I was pretty sure she wouldn’t sit there, if she even showed up at all. James and Sirius went to sit in their seats also, James glancing at me for a moment as he did so. My heart gave a painful throb but I ignored it.
Soon enough, the people who ate breakfast were filing in, chatting to one another. Grace came in with Remus, cradled under his arm and clutching tightly to him. I found it cute but rather strange, since Grace hardly ever liked to depend on someone. She usually was the one comforting her friends and giving them advice, not the other way around.
“Sit with me.” I heard Grace say from the back of the room.
“But Gaby--” Remus started.
“She’s not going to sit with me.” Grace interrupted. “I know it, trust me.”
Remus was rather reluctant, but sat anyway beside his girlfriend, holding onto her hand. Peter walked inside and looked panicky once he saw that Remus was sitting with Grace; not knowing if he should go sit behind the other two Marauders by himself.
“Go ahead, Wormtail.” Remus said softly. “I promise to sit with you in Herbology, alright?”
“O-okay.” He stuttered. I looked hard at him as he sat down, looking jumpy. And I mean more than usual.
“Doesn’t Peter look a bit…twitchy today?” I asked uncertainly.
“Doesn’t he always?” Henn grinned. The grin slowly slid off her face though once Mcgonagall came in, closely followed by the last student of the class. Gaby wasn’t skipping class like Leah had suggested, but was now looking around the room, frowning and avoiding eye contact with any of us. She glared at Remus as she passed, probably for taking her seat although she probably wouldn’t even sit there anyway. That was how Gaby’s mind worked though…if she had arrived earlier and sat elsewhere, she’d be the one to hold the grudge. But this time Grace was the first offense, and Gaby had no choice but to sit in the only empty spot, which was by Peter.
The bell rang and Mcgonagall took attendance as she usually did. When Remus assured her that he was present though, her eyes roamed to the back of the room where he was situated. She said nothing however, since she wasn’t very big on seating charts. Her rule was if you could behave and pay attention to the lesson in the same time, it didn’t matter where you sat.
“Alright, today you all have a pop quiz.” Mcgonagall said, once she was done with the roll. The class groaned simultaneously, and Mcgonagall narrowed her eyes. “No complaining. This is a N.E.W.T.s class so this should be expected. First however, I am going to pass out your essays. This may relieve some of you…but a few have gotten abysmal grades. I’m ashamed to call you my advanced class, since everyone here should have gotten something close to perfect.” She cleared her throat, being straight to the point like she always was. I heard James snicker from the other side of the room.
She walked over to her desk where a pile of parchment was stacked, about a foot and a half high. “Ms. Evans, come here please and help me pass out your essays.”
I immediately left my desk and took the rolls of parchment she gave me, which I had to tilt my head to look at the name. I walked over to Patricia and handed her essay to her, then with a quick glance saw that my essay was next. I dropped it carelessly onto my desk and moved onto the next person, not really worrying about it.
After I was done with helping Mcgonagall with the papers, I sat down on my desk and carefully unrolled my parchment. My heart stopped. A big, red capital D was written on the top.
Dreadful. I had gotten a Dreadful on my paper.
“Ooh, I did much better than I thought.” Henn said happily to herself, and then tried to glance over at my paper discreetly. I rolled it up quickly and stuffed it in my bag, my eyes filling with tears.
How could I have done so horribly? I thought I had gotten it down right, I mean it was only on Animagi… I even exaggerated a bit and wrote another half page! I had never gotten a worse grade than an Acceptable, and I didn’t think I would now.
But what did I expect? Not this, I thought, even though Transfiguration was my worse subject. Was I really letting all this stress get to me? Dumbledore definitely wouldn’t make me Head Girl if he knew I was such a nut case.
I turned around, pretending to look at the clock but instead glancing around the room. Everyone looked pretty happy and relieved about his or her grades…except for Peter, who looked close to tears like I was. Gaby gave him a disgusted look, but looked pleased when she found out her grade.
“Class, settle down.” Mcgonagall said strictly. “Alright, now time for that pop quiz…”
“What did you get?” Henn asked eagerly at the end of class, where we walked to the back of the room to meet up with Grace and Remus. Gaby had already left in a hurry, glaring at us as she went but not talking to us, which was expected. I hitched my bag higher onto my shoulder and stared gloomily at the parchment that Grace was holding, as she showed Henn her grade. I noticed that she was considerably happier than that morning, as Henn widened her eyes in astonishment. “An Outstanding! How do you do it, Grace?”
“What did you get, Lily?” Remus asked. I looked up at him, opening and closing my mouth. I probably looked like a goldfish.
“Uh…” I said. I swallowed. “Um, what did you get, Remus?” I asked, throwing the question right back at him.
Remus didn’t look perturbed though. “An E.” he said nonchalantly, not getting very into it. He didn’t look too triumphant either. I love that guy.
“That quiz wasn’t too brutal either.” Grace said, as we walked out of the classroom and headed down towards Herbology. “I think I did alright on it.”
“Yeah, me too.” Henn agreed. They continued to chat, while Remus and I walked behind them.
“So, are you alright?” Remus asked softly. I didn’t know what he meant though, if it was the essay or the quiz. Because of this I started to tear up again.
“What do you mean?” I asked in a rather chocked voice. I coughed, trying to hide it.
“The whole dilemma between you three and Gaby.” He replied. Oh, that. Another worry, how great.
“I suppose I can’t really do anything about it.” I said slowly.
“You can apologize.” He offered. I scoffed.
“You don’t know Gaby, do you?” He smiled.
“Grace said that too.” He replied. He sighed, as we walked out onto the grounds towards the greenhouses. “I’m worried about her.”
“Yeah.” I said. “Me too.”
Remus glanced at Grace who was up ahead, but she wasn’t listening to what we were saying. “You know, she nearly started crying all over me at breakfast today.” He said in a low voice.
“She did yesterday.” I said. “It was sort of shocking, since I had never seen her cry before.”
“Yeah, that worries me too.” He said, frowning.
“What do you mean?” I asked.
“Well, I think that since she hardly ever shows any horrible emotion at all…when she really does need to she just…explodes.” He said slowly. “It’s overwhelming onto her.”
“I never thought about it that way.” I said thoughtfully. “I just thought she was a cold-hearted bitch.” I laughed, and so did he. Remus had a nice laugh.
“Seriously though,” he said, once he stopped laughing. “I really do hope you and Henn are alright.”
“Thanks.” I said, smiling at him. “That’s nice of you.”
He chuckled. “Just watching out for you guys.” He said softly, and then grinned at me. “So, are you sort of okay?”
Well, ignoring the fact that I was doing horribly in Transfiguration, the whole Gaby ordeal, and the wedding that was coming up that I still had not decided if I was to go or not, “Yeah.” I said, forcing a smile.
I’m not entirely sure if he believed me, since his smile faltered for a bit before returning to his face. “Good.” He said, nodding. He then speeded up so that he could walk next to Grace, putting an arm over her shoulder. She stopped talking to Henn momentarily and smiled at him, before continuing.
I sighed. At least Grace had Remus.
“She is the most stubborn person I have ever met.” Henn said, shaking her head. Gaby had just arrived in the Great Hall for dinner, quickly avoiding everyone’s gaze and swiftly taking the seat next to Kat. She didn’t look at us or even acknowledged our existence. “This is going to go on for a long time.”
And she was right. What if she held this grudge until the end of the year? What if we graduated without even speaking to one another? What if I was going to get married and I sent her an invitation, asking her to be one of my bridesmaids, and she didn’t even respond, or didn’t even go to the wedding? Well, I suppose that was unlikely since I would never get married. No one would want to stay the rest of his life with me, during sickness and in health, till death do us part. No one who was sane, that is.
I sighed. “Yeah, you’re right.” Henn didn’t seem to have heard me though, she was actually looking at someone sitting at the Hufflepuff table, and I had actually a pretty good idea of whom.
“Look at him,” she said in a low voice, narrowing her eyes as Jack laughed along with his friends. He looked fine. You wouldn’t even have known they had broken up. “I bet it’s one of those gits that are with him.” She was of course, referring to the girls that surrounded him and his friends, who were giggling madly and reminding me of James and Sirius with their usual cronies. I rolled my eyes but felt angry nevertheless.
“Do you even have a plan yet?” I asked, raising my eyebrow as Henn gritted her teeth, her hand twitching towards her wand.
“Not really.” Henn said nonchalantly, chewing extra hard on the meat she stuffed in her mouth. She swallowed, looking thoughtful. “Unless…”
“What?” I asked curiously. Henn widened her eyes suddenly, slapping her hands on the table with a loud smacking noise and leaning forward.
“Quick! Do you know anyone at the Hufflepuff table?” she hissed.
“Oh! I know! Diggory, that dimwit will fall for anything.” She said, scratching her chin and answering her own question. “Okay, I’ll be right back.”
“Um--” I began, but she had already hopped off the bench was proceeding towards the Hufflepuff table, where Amos Diggory, another seventh year, was chatting with his friends and letting out his loud and rough laugh. He was rather dim, and was easily tricked. Most people didn’t cross him though because his dad worked for the Ministry, and could fire any of their parents in a heartbeat. He stopped chuckling at what his friend said when he saw that Henn was coming over, smiling at him. I smiled too; she was so evil.
I watched discreetly as she sat next to him and pretended to be flirting with Amos, her eyes darting towards Jack who was nearby every so often. He had just noticed that she was there, and had abruptly stopped talking once he saw that she looked at him. Jack’s friends all looked at Henn too, although that didn’t stop them from chatting. They probably didn’t know Henn was Gaby’s friend.
Diggory however, was laughing animatedly at whatever Henn had said, while his friends were let in on the joke. I caught Henn’s eye for a moment and she grinned.
“What’s your evil little friend doing now?”
I turned around and saw that Sirius had gotten up from his usual seat near James, Remus, and Peter, where Grace had decided to sit there also. I grinned as he smirked at me, sitting down.
“Noticed, did you?” I mused. Sirius’s lip curled as his eyes darted towards Henn, where she was now giggling in a very uncharacteristic way, while once again her eyes moved towards something Jack had said.
“Is Gaby still mad?” Sirius asked casually. My smile faded and I narrowed my eyes at his tone.
“Yes.” I said.
“Hm, figures.” I rolled my eyes at him.
“Don’t you ever show any emotion?” I asked coldly. “Like remorse, perhaps?” He grinned at me.
“No, not really.”
“You and Grace would do well.” I noted.
“We would, wouldn’t we?” he said amusedly. “But nah, Moony’s crazy about her.”
I laughed, just as Henn decided to say goodbye to Amos and return to the Gryffindor table. She sat down happily, grinning at us.
“Diggory, eh?” Sirius laughed. “Isn’t he a bit stupid for you?”
“Oh, shut up.” Henn said, as she stopped smiling and started to blush. “You guys know I wouldn’t go out with him.”
“Oh, really?” I teased. I looked over at Amos, who had a wide grin on his face as he talked to his friends. “I believe he thinks otherwise.” As I said this Sirius slapped both his hands at the sides of his face, fluttering his eyelashes as he pretended to be a girl.
“‘Oh, Amos! How strooooong you are!’”
“Stop.” Henn murmured, blushing. “Who do you think I am? Cecilia Love?”
“No, or else I’d be dating you.”
“Sirius!” I said, laughing.
“Okay, do you want to listen to what I saw or not?” Henn said crossly.
“Go ahead, dear.” Sirius said easily, leaning against the table and grinning. Henn pursed her lips, but said nothing.
“Alright, I think it’s one of the girls that was over there, cause she kept on touching his leg and smiling at him.” Henn said, pretending to gag. “It was disgusting.”
“I don’t know.” She said, frowning at Sirius. “We’ll have to figure that out.”
“Which one is it?” I asked, turning around in my seat so I could get a better look at the flock of girls that surrounded Jack and his friends. My eyes landed on a petite and thin blonde girl that was giggling and indeed touching his leg. My mouth dropped. “Henn! That’s Natalie!”
“Natalie, who’s she?”
“One of Aaron Smith’s cronies.” Sirius said grimly. “Hate that kid.”
I rolled my eyes, since Sirius’s hatred towards Aaron was common knowledge. “Remember, Henn? We sat with them at breakfast once.”
“I thought she was dating your ex.” Henn asked in a confused voice.
“You mean that French, scrawny, blonde kid?” Sirius said, his eyes lighting up. “The one that Prongs hated?”
“Yes.” I said, rolling my eyes, although deep down I sort of wished James was still jealous of my boyfriends.
“The one we played that one prank on?”
“You played a prank on him?” Henn asked incredulously. I smiled. Even though I wouldn’t admit it, whatever the prank was, it was good enough.
“Yep.” Sirius said proudly. “Let’s just say that’s one of the reasons that he broke up with you.”
“Whoa, I thought you liked Prongs now.” Sirius said, widening his eyes. I blushed.
“I do not.” I said indignantly. Sirius and Henn gave me the same annoying, knowing look. “Stop it!”
“Okay, after we’re done with this evil doing,” Sirius said, smirking at me then grinning at Henn. “I think we’re going to have to find a way to make James break up with Eve so he and Lily could get together.”
“That plan is already in process.” Henn said, grinning. I gaped at her, while Sirius laughed.
“Good.” Sirius said pleasantly.
“You guys, stop it.” I said through gritted teeth, my face getting redder by the second.
“It’s alright, love.” Sirius chuckled. “First, we got to get rid of the blonde twig.”
Henn cleared her throat. “How are we going to do it, though?”
“We can turn her hair blue.” Sirius said, taking his wand out of his pocket and taking aim on Natalie’s head. “With bronze streaks, since she’s a Ravenclaw and all.”
“No, we need something worse.” I said thoughtfully, furrowing my eyebrows.
“How about we turn her upside down like Snivelly so her knickers can be on display?” Sirius suggested in an innocent tone.
“No, that’ll be just for you and all the boys’ enjoyment.” I said, rolling my eyes.
“No, not really. She’s so skinny I hardly think it’ll be a good sight.” Sirius said, pocketing his wand. “I like a little meat on them--” he said, pinching my waist unexpectedly and making me jump. I glared at him, while both him and Henn laughed.
“Wait,” Henn said suddenly, widening her eyes as she grinned. “I have an idea.”
“Do you?” Sirius smiled.
“What is it?” I asked.
“Come here,” she said, making us lean closer so that it looked like we were huddling or something. “Listen up…”
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