Disclaimer: I own nothing that you recognize from any Harry Potter book. If you don't recognize it: Hey it's mine! There's a small bit of 'Puff the Magic Dragon' – I do not own it. And the 'Mervin' bits are from 'Robin Hood Men In Tights'. I hope you enjoy it.
BEAVER BUDDY BROUGHT ME TO 500 REVIEWS FOR TGTYEL!!! Let's all give her a round of applause!! *applause breaks out* Absolutely lovely.
Hey guys I'm back for the sequel to The Greatest Thing You'll Ever Learn…
Good to know half of you already guessed the title of my third instalment. ;) Well, as a 'Welcome to Chapter One!' I'm giving you guys a hugely long chapter. Hugely. So, enjoy it and tell me what you think! Adios!
PS. Jen and Sirius' summer are combined. Just letting you know. ;)
* * *
"Hello! How many today?" Lily chirped. 'Oh someone's going to pay for this…' She grumbled inside, trying to ignore how sore her cheeks were from smiling all day.
"Four and a half." The man laughed, gesturing to the sleeping boy in his wife's arms. They were both laughing.
Lily faked a laugh. "Highchair then? " The man nodded and she grabbed a highchair. "Right this way." Lily sat the family near the back of the restaurant. "Your waitress will be right with you." She smiled. "Enjoy your meals." Lily walked away, smiling like she so often did at work, and back to her post. "Four and a half…" she grumbled, "Been said too many times…" Lily looked around and started organizing her front area, dusting her hostess podium.
"Lily dear you can go on break, I'll take your post." Mr. Evans said, putting his hand on Lily's shoulder.
"Thanks daddy." With a real smile Lily walked into the back. "Bloody hell… it has to be illegal to force someone to be constantly perky." Looking around, she grabbed a teacup and poured herself some Earl Grey. "Oh yea…" she said after taking a sip. "That was so good."
Petunia ran into the back. "Freak, there's an owl trying to get in every time customers open the front door!" She hissed at her sister.
Lily shot up, ignoring her tired feet that begged her to stay, and ran back into the lobby. "Excuse me." She pushed past the people waiting to be seated. Lily opened the door and saw the owl circling above. It swooped down and landed on her outstretched arm. She was about to take the letter off its leg when she noticed the crowd of twenty or so people watching her…
"You attracted way too much attention…" she mumbled to the Tawny, barely moving her lips. It hooted in indignation. Biting her lip, she turned and brought the owl in the restaurant. "Quickly to the back, Lily…" She urged herself on, trying to shield the owl from view.
"Lillian!" Lily stopped and closed her eyes. "Lillian, what in blazes do you think you're doing?" Her father hissed at her.
"There were too many people outside!" She hissed back. "I'm taking it to the back-"
"Oh no you're not! Not in my restaurant." He kept his voice quiet, and pointed to the front door. "Back outside."
"Daddy you're attracting more attention." Lily stated simply. "It's from school. I want to know if I made Head Girl."
Her father took a shuddering breath, trying to calm himself and stole a quick glance at his customers behind him. They seemed to have not noticed the owl… Grabbing his daughter by her owl free arm, he guided her to the staff area, blocking both her and the bird from prying eyes. "Make sure that thing doesn't go near the kitchen." Mr. Evans said, pointing at the bird. The owl ruffled its feathers and snapped his beak at the finger before it.
"Ok daddy, thanks." And then she rushed to where she was previously. "Let's see what you have for me…" She untied the letter eagerly. "Dear Ms. Evans," the owl flew to the back of her chair. "Please note the school year begins, yadda, yadda, yadda… list of books, ok…" She flipped to a different page. "Congratulations for making Head Girl!" Lily screamed, jumping up and down. The owl, sensing the excitement, began to screech and lightly flap its wings.
Petunia ran in, but before she could scold her sister, Lily jumped Petunia into a hug. Petunia, although shocked, pushed Lily off.
"The whole bloody restaurant can hear you. Keep it down Lily." Petunia said quietly, straightening out her clothes before leaving.
Lily stood there dumbfounded. "She called me Lily…" It sounded odd coming from her sister's mouth after nearly 7 years of absence.
"What's this I hear about my baby girl being Head Girl?" Mr. Evans asked happily, coming into the back. Lily laughed and ran to her father, giving him a longer and stronger hug than she had Petunia. "Congratulations Lily."
"Thanks daddy." She pulled away. Crossing her fingers she skimmed the page again.
"So who are you working with this year, hun?" Her father asked, also crossing his fingers, but for different reasons. That Patrick kid sounded appealing to him. Silent, studious…
A huge smile broke out on Lily's face that told her father the answer. "James Potter!" She squealed. "Oh I'm so happy!" She hugged her father again. "Can I get off early and go congratulate him? Do you think he got his letter yet?" She asked, taking her badge out of the envelope.
"No Lily. You just have an hour and a half left, you can wait." He replied with a smile. The owl hooted. "And can you get that bird out of here now? Through the back door perhaps?"
"Sure, I'll just get him some food and water." She made a beeline for the kitchen and got two strips of bacon from the head chef. "Just an hour and a half…" Lily said as the owl ate and drank.
She took the bird to the back entrance and let it out, watching it fly away.
She sighed. This day was going to go better than she expected it to…
~ * ~
"James, are you almost done with the MacWilliam files yet?"
"Almost Mr. Longbottom, a couple more minutes?" James asked, smiling at the young man.
"Yes of course. And how many times do I have to tell you? Frank is just fine. You've been here a month, today's your last day – just call me Frank, ok?" Frank Longbottom smiled back and walked to his office.
"Ok Frank!" James said, loud enough for the other man to hear.
"You pestering Frank again, son?" Mr. Potter asked, walking into his office and loosening the collar of his robes.
"Never." James replied with a shake of his head, still looking down at the papers before him. "Is there any way I could stay here longer?" James looked up.
"Sorry James, but a month was the longest I could get. I tried for the whole summer, but alas-" he sighed dramatically "- I'm just not popular enough."
"About time you figured that out." Frank said at the doorway, his arms crossed. He nodded to James. "You done yet?" He said exasperatedly with a roll of his eyes.
"Just." James said, straightening the papers. He walked around his father's desk and handed them to man. "There you go Frank."
"Thank you Mr. Potter." Frank replied importantly. "I'll see that these get filed right away, sir."
"No, no – you can call me James." James said casually, putting a hand on Frank's shoulder. Mr. Potter looked on amusedly.
Franks hand flew to his mouth and he looked at Mr. Potter. "He touched me!" He said in a happy whisper. "Oh wait till I tell the wife!" He ran down the hall and the two Potter's heard him calling for 'the wife'.
"That man is odd…" Mr. Potter said, shoulders shaking with mirth. "Brilliant, but odd." He turned to his son. "Well, you're done James."
James sighed. "Yea, let's go." He looked around one last time, and grabbed his cloak. "Home cooked meal tonight?"
"Sure." His father replied, grabbing his own cloak. "Race you to the lobby." He said, eyes twinkling.
"Dad that's so immature." James shook his head. "Race you!" And he was off.
"You filthy cheater!" Mr. Potter yelled, chasing after him.
"You only cheated because you knew I'd win." Mr. Potter said triumphantly, throwing Floo powder into the flames of the great fireplace.
"Believe what you want, but that doesn't change the fact I won." James stepped into the fire, shouted "Potter Manor" and was gone. Mr. Potter walked outside the Ministry building and apparated.
They both entered the living room at the same time.
"You're just too old to beat me: James Potter. Quidditch Captain and everyth- Lily?" James stopped mid-sentence when he spotted his girlfriend sitting on the couch.
Mr. Potter spun around in surprise. "Well… what a shock, I mean surprise."
Lily stood up smiling. "Hello Mr. Potter." She looked at James. "You-"
"Me?" He asked, quickly going over every prank him and Sirius had pulled over the summer… Call it a habit.
Lily ran up to him and gave him a kiss. "Congratulations." And then she kissed him harder. Although taken by shock, it didn't take long for James to retaliate.
"Will you be staying for dinner, Lily?" Mr. Potter asked, unfazed.
They stopped and Lily nodded. "If that's all right with you?"
"Perfectly fine." Mr. Potter said as James said: "Damn fine!" happily. Mr. Potter left to the kitchens to tell the House-elves. "We're having lasagne, is that ok?" He called.
"Sure!" They replied.
"So what are you congratulating me for? I didn't mention today as my last day that many times, did I?" He asked, leading Lily to the couch.
"You don't know?" James shook his head. "Well, I guess 'e' is long before 'p'."
"James, you have an owl." Mr. Potter said, bringing the bird into the living room. The owl flew from his arm to James' knee with a soft hoot.
Lily was bouncing on the couch in excitement and James had a good idea why. He smiled at her and took the letter. Hands shaking, he opened it. "Dear Mr. Potter," he started, "Please note, blah, blah, blah…" He flipped past the book list. "Congratulations for making Head Boy!" He yelled, jumping up and sending the owl flying and twittering. "I'm Head Boy!" He yelled again throwing the parchments in the air and spinning Lily around, laughing. "And you're?" He asked, setting her down.
"Head Girl!" Lily shrieked.
"Head Girl!" James clapped and looked at his dad. "I'm Head Boy!" Mr. Potter opened his mouth but James cut him off. "And she's Head Girl!" He pointed to Lily who was holding him.
"Yes I got the newsletter." He said sarcastically with a grin. "Congratulations to the both of you." He gave his over-excited son a hug, where James nearly crushed him. Then startling Lily, he gave her a hug as well.
"Thank you, Mr. Potter." Lily said when he let her go.
"Call me David." Mr. Potter said lightly, with a wink at James. Lily wiped away her tears. "Well I think the table is set and dinner is served."
"Mr. Potter, sir?" Stelphie squeaked tentatively. "Dinner is ready."
"Thank you Stelphie."
They went into the lush dining room and ate their lasagne and Caesar salad (with garlic bread of course).
"I believe this celebration calls for candlelight." Mr. Potter said. Lily was confused. Wasn't the whole house lit by candlelight at night? He waved his wand. All other candles were put out and twenty appeared amongst the table. A cork being popped sounded. "And champagne."
Clang. Lily dropped her fork. "I love you." She said without thinking. James snorted into his salad, and had a small coughing fit into his napkin for the lettuce that got stuck in his throat.
"Sorry, sorry." He mumbled, keeping his head down and trying not to laugh.
"Why thank you… Lily." Mr. Potter said, eyeing her oddly as he poured three glasses. "A toast." He held up his champagne glass. "To a prosperous year for our new Heads, and to all their friends. May this year be the best of your lives."
"Cheers." And they drank to it.
~ * ~
"One scoop of cherry, one of mint chocolate chip and one of rocky-road. Got that? I don't want any of the cherry touching my rocky-road." The customer said sternly, watching Mel carefully.
"Yes it's all fine sir. Will that be all?" Mel asked, putting the scooper through the 'clean all' spelled sink.
"Yes, yes, how much?" The man asked irritably.
"15 sickles and 3 knuts." The man counted his money, handed her exact change, grabbed his ice cream and left. Mel could feel a twitch coming. "You know Florean…" Mel said, walking over to her boss and plopping into a chair beside him. "I think of myself as a patient person…"
"Indeed." Florean Fortescue nodded.
"But people like that…" She blew some hair out of her face. "Drive me insane I guess you could say."
Florean laughed. "I know what you mean." He stood up. "Well, it's late, time to close. Thank you for all your help this summer Melissa. I really mean it. Coming in early, leaving late if need be… you've been great."
Mel smiled sincerely. "You're welcome. I'll have to admit I'll miss coming to work here… but I'll stop by before I leave for Hogwarts and when I come home for Christmas." She shook Mr. Fortescue's hand and left. "Good bye."
"Good bye Melissa, until next time." He waved.
Mel waved and left the little parlour, swinging her purse in her left hand. She laughed as Anne Waterfield, a Gryffindor who had just graduated, came out of Magical Menagerie and ran past, chasing her cat (who was known to run away) down the cobblestone road. The lanterns of Diagon Alley were lit and the whole area was peaceful. She walked slowly to the Leaky Cauldron, saying hello to the few she'd pass.
As she was about to walk past Knockturn Alley, she heard whispered voices. Now, the smart side of her told her to keep walking normally and forget about it. That's why the Sorting Hat wanted to put her in Ravenclaw. But the stupid side of her, the one that enjoyed a bit of excitement, made her stop and listen. That's why the Hat ended up putting her in Gryffindor.
"But Master said that he wants to get that mudblood chick."
"He's putting it on hold for now… something about Gryffindor. But no – he'll be right mad if we try to do this. I say let it go-"
"But she'll be off soon! Bait. She can be bait, and Master can just kill the mudblood when she comes-"
"-you know she wouldn't. Dumbledore is probably all over his plan anyway. And you know how Master is, remember what he said before?"
The more authoritive man sighed in frustration, "And I quote: Didn't your mothers ever tell you not to play with your food? Yes well, that is not true with your prey. And she, my followers, is my prey. End quote. If we stay on her, no one will suspect a bigger step-"
Mel had heard enough. She took a few strides backwards then began a speed walk, making noise so they'd hear her coming… they wouldn't think she had eavesdropped…
Quickly making her way to the brick wall before the Leaky Cauldron, she counted the bricks backwards. "Two across, three down." Mel entered the little stone enclosure and entered the pub. "Hullo Tom."
"Why hello Miss Gorman. Work late?" He inquired, seeing her flushed cheeks and sweaty forehead.
"Yes. Took a brisk walk here. Never can be too careful these days, can we?" She attempted a smile but was way too spooked to succeed.
"Too true. Well, I'll talk you some time other then. It's been nice seeing you." Tom said, wiping down his counter.
"Bye Tom." She threw in some Floo powder into the flames, shouted out "Roe Cottage" and was off, speeding through the Floo system.
She stepped out at her house, dusted herself of and headed straight upstairs. She put her ear to get grandparents bedroom door. She heard her grandfather's snores, and her grandmother's knitting needles.
She opened the door slightly and smiled at her Grandma Roe. "Grams, I'm home."
"Oh hello dear. I thought I had heard you. Had to stay late?" Grandma Roe asked.
"Yep, till closing. Well, I'm pooped. See you in the morning. Love you." She blew a kiss and closed the door. Making her way to the bathroom, she flicked on the lights and turned on the tap water. She looked at her reflection.
Her hair was matted down on her forehead, her face pale, and cheeks pink. "I look sick or something…" She muttered. Mel bent down and splashed her face with the cool water, washing off all her make-up.
Bringing the small towel with her, she dried her face and sat down at her desk in her small room. Mel took out some parchment and a quill. She dipped it in some pretty blue ink and began the letter in her cursive writing, to be sent out with Hibou, her grandfather's old owl.
Dear Professor Dumbledore.
I hope this letter finds you well. This evening on my way home from work I overheard two mean talking in Knockturn Alley. I know, I know – I should have kept going but my Gryffindor side won the battle.I heard something's that might interest you…
~ * ~
Peter walked down the streetlamp lit sidewalk. With his hands in his pockets, head down and black robes in his knap-sack, he trudged home from the late night meeting. His thoughts were all a whirl and it was beginning to make him dizzy. He sat upon a bench at a nearby bus stop to collect his thoughts.
Peter raised his hand at the meeting and the one elder Death Eater made her way over.
"W-why can't we talk to each other?" He had asked quietly, so no other could hear his voice.
The Death Eater stepped back from him. "This young individual has made an excellent point." She spoke articulately and slowly for all to hear. "All of you here go to Hogwarts. Knowing each other would jeopardize everything. During dinner you recognize that voice you hear here. You may never have heard it outside of this group, but at school it catches your attention. You search for the owner and are shocked. Too shocked for words. Your friends notice, but keep quiet.
"One look in the hall or passed word in a classroom could ruin your entire group. Say someone, a friend, notices and tails you. Say they inform Dumbledore. He speaks to you about your associations that are out of your house and year. Surely there is nothing wrong with that – but if a friend is worried… it must be addressed for the safety of you and the school." She paced in the middle of the circle.
"You fumble your words, stutter a response and avoid his gaze." She stopped and looked towards Peter. "As one you are weak, but together you are powerful. After Hogwarts you may know each other, and will be branded with our Master's glorious symbol." Here she lifted up her sleeve, and in the dim light of the forest they could still see it's dark outline on her pale skin: Skull with a snake substituting for its tongue. She put her sleeve back down.
"Knowing each other is too risky. You falter in front of Dumbledore and the next thing you know you're telling him everything, weeping at his feet." She looked back towards Peter. "Does that answer your question?"
So no one knew he was there… no one there knew who he was… Voldemort didn't even know his name. Peter had stayed later to find out if this was true.
"What do you want?" The Death Eater had asked. "The meeting is over, go back to your mother Pettigrew – we got her out for you, never forget that." She said coldly to the lone boy standing before her.
"Yes, t-thank you. I-I just wanted to know if Master knew my – our, all of our names." Peter asked, sweating and staring at the dirt ground. He cursed his nerves, and once again wondered why he had been made a Gryffindor.
"Of course not. There are too many to keep track of. Your group aren't even officially signed in." She took off her hood. Peter had thought correctly – it was the Malfoy lady this time. "Remove your hood Pettigrew." He did. "So young…" She traced her cold, pallid finger down his jaw line. The effect made him shiver. "You may think you're special by being in Gryffindor, but I know you Peter. You couldn't convince anyone there to join. I remember what I saw for you in the orb. You are weak, Pettigrew. Hide behind your strong friends; that is why you are here.
"Who will look after poor Pettigrew after Hogwarts? Who will keep him safe when Voldemort killed his father?" Peter flinched at the name. "Who will give him care when his mother went insane? Who will give him strength when his grandfather beat him? His friends and that school he attends.
"But what of after school? His friends work and marry, his school is not an option – he is not capable enough to teach others what he himself cannot master.
"Who will take him in? Who will rid him of his abusive grandfather? Who will restore his mother to him? Who can make him more powerful than his friends? Voldemort-" Flinch "can, and Voldemort-" Flinch "will."
Peter ran his hands through his hair and stared at the pavement between his feet. He didn't see the lights, or hear the bus stop and open its door.
"Hey kid – you getting on?" The bus driver yelled.
"Oh, no I'm sorry." Peter apologized, getting up to leave.
"Bloody hippy teenagers… All drugs, no brains." The bus driver mumbled, closing the door and driving on.
Peter kept walking down his street, wondering how late it was now. A few minutes later he got to his driveway and stared at his house. It was in desperate need of a paint job. The white coating was chipping off, and one of the brown shutters on an upper window was hanging by its lower hinge. The windows needed hosing down and the grass cutting.
He dragged himself up the walkway, taking longer than needed. Turning the rusted handle, he wished for his mum to be in bed. Swinging the door open he saw her sitting on the stairs, watching him enter with obvious relief.
"Oh Peter I had no idea where you were!" She put her hands on the sides of her head and sighed. Peter closed the door and took off his shoes. "Where were you?"
"Out." He answered, not in the mood to talk. He began to walk past her to go to the kitchen and get some water.
"Peter I don't know you anymore, you're acting different." Mrs. Pettigrew said, standing and looking down at her son by the stairs.
Peter stopped. "Yea well, you weren't here for most my adolescence. Why do you expect me to be the same?" He looked at her depressingly. "What do you mean you don't know me 'anymore'? You never knew me!" He said angrily. "You chugged depressants for two years before they looked you up. You stopped knowing me when I was seven." He glared at his crying mother and turned. Peter walked into the kitchen and poured himself some tap water.
Mrs. Pettigrew followed him, wrapping her robe tighter and hugged her body. "Peter we're falling apart." Peter put the empty cup in the sink. "Why won't you talk to me?" He brushed past her but she followed. "Tell me what goes on in your head!" She yelled at his back as he went up the stairs.
"You wouldn't understand." He said quietly. "You never would."
She followed him still. "I would if you just talked to me."
Peter slammed the door in her face. He threw his bag in the closet and forcefully shut the door. She would never understand, and neither would he.
~ * ~
"Ok, ok… um… alright, I got one. How old were you when you got your first kiss?"
Ara thought for a minute, looking up at the twinkling stars. Carl had taken her out for a sunset picnic in a nearby park. Now they sat atop a small hill near a handful of oak trees, lying upon his wool blanket, finding out embarrassing moments from each other.
"I was 5… and was in the park with my mum. This boy I go to school with now was dared to kiss me." She turned her head and looked into Carl's eyes. Ara was laying on her back, one arm supporting her head and her other hand held onto one of Carl's. "I hit him pretty hard after I found out."
Carl was on his side, propping himself with his left arm and tracing circles on Arabella's stomach with the hand she held. "And his name was…?" Carl prodded, lightly tickling her.
Ara giggled and squirmed. "S-Sirius Black." She laughed.
"I'll have to watch out for him, won't I? Carl laughed and kissed Ara lightly. "You will warn him of me, won't you, when you go back to school? Tell him while I'm in the picture, he's not?" Carl tickled her more and Ara curled up and laughed.
"Y-yes!" She screamed, trying to roll out of his reach. Carl stopped and pulled her near, pleased with himself. "As long as you avoid all those female students of yours. They're nothing but trouble for cute guys like you."
"I will even if I have to beat them off with sticks and dragons." Carl said, kissing her on the lips.
"Dragons? Where are you going to find dragons?" Ara asked with a smile, snuggling closer to him. 'And which species?' she thought with a smile.
"Well, there's 'Pete's Dragon'," he said, counting on his fingertips. Ara snorted, "'Puff the Magic Dragon'…" Ara burst out laughing.
"All they need to keep him at bay are string, ceiling wax and other fancy stuff." Ara poked him in the chest, quoting the song.
"Well we better forbid all of that at my school, won't we?" Carl asked, millimetres from her face.
"Mm…" Ara replied. He bent down and kissed her compellingly. Ara obeyed and wrapped her arms around his neck, pulling him closer. Smiling while she kissed him, Ara removed one hand from his hair and felt for something on the blanket. 'Ah found it.' She thought, trying not to laugh.
Carl pulled back. "What is it?" he asked. "I could tell that you were laughing or something."
Ara grinned devilishly and brought her outstretched hand to his face, smearing icing all over it from the cake they hadn't finished. "That." She said with a smile.
Carl's mouth dropped in shock, and he stared at her. When Ara got up to run, he grabbed her ankle and pulled her back down. While she scrambled and laughed, he grabbed a handful of cake, feeling it squish between his fingers.
"Get here you!" He yelled, getting up and chasing her around the great oaks. "I am going to smother you in baked goods!" He laughed, trying to find the tree Ara had hid behind.
"In your dreams!" She yelled back, running to another tree.
"Aha!" He saw her. "And when did I tell you about that dream?" He asked, waiting patiently in front of the tree he saw Ara run behind. "Ha!" He jumped around the tree and smeared the vanilla cake down her cheek. "Well I caught you." Carl said, holding her upper arms, getting a cake imprint on her left. "What's my prize?"
Ara pleased herself for noticing that he still had an icing smear on his cheek. "A bath?" She mused, taking off a bit of icing with her finger, and putting it in her mouth. She leaned forward and got the rest off, hands free, (A/N: *winks*) and Carl worked on hers, Soon their lips met and both tasted of sweet vanilla.
After a vigorous half hour snog session, they decided to pack up. Carl drove her home, had another ten minute kiss, and then left. Ara walked into her house, smiling.
"Well, well, well…" Janine said from the living room. "And here I was – about to call some Aurors to find you." Ara opened her mouth, but Janine continued. "Put you picture in the paper…"
"Call Scotland Yard…"
"Janine!" Ara exclaimed with a laugh. "It's only 10."
"Uh huh…" Janine stood up and walked over to Ara. "And what is on your face?" She asked, flicking off some dry icing.
Ara turned red and smiled. "That," she said, "is none of your business." She turned and walked up to her room. Janine followed. (A/N: Like every annoying parent does…) When Ara took her coat her aunt burst out laughing.
"Now you have to explain that!" She laughed, pointing to Ara's upper left arm.
Ara looked down and felt herself go beet red when she spotted the white handprint. "We had an icing war." She stated matter-of-factly but with a face that belied a smile.
"Uh huh…" Janine leaned on the doorframe, her brown eyes dancing with suppressed laughter.
"Oh shut up you." Ara glared, putting her coat on a hanger.
"Ouch." Janine closed her eyes and mocked pain. "You kiss your boyfriend with that mouth?" She smirked.
"Out!" Ara yelled, throwing a hanger at the door laughing. Janine closed the door with a grin. "You sound like Sirius!"
~ * ~
"Check." Jen said, leaning back in her seat and grinning broadly at the chessboard in front of her.
Sirius looked near to tears. His hair stuck up from every time he ran his hands through in frustration. He was gripping the hair above his ears, leaning on his elbows, muttering to himself, and searching the board frantically for some sign of help. The chess pieces weren't helping much.
"What do you think you're doing you lazy swine?!" His pawn screeched as Sirius' hand hovered above it. Jen heard him mumble 'I dunno…' with wide eyes, and a rapidly growing twitch. "You bloody inguinal!" Sirius' hand shot back to his lap. "Don't move me. Now, Joseph over there – he's expendable-" Sirius' eyes flickered to the other side of the board, to his front line, "-get his arse beaten off by her knight."
"But he's guarding my Queen…" Sirius said to the abusive pawn.
"Oh no he's not dearie." The Queen scoffed. "He's not doing a darn thing. Pardon my language Henry." She added to the King by her side. The King muttered something that sounded like 'ruffians…' That prompted a 'hmph' and slap from his usually benign wife.
Sirius whimpered something unintelligible and flicked at his left ear for inspiration.
"Oh do something you feeble wanker!" A different pawn yelled.
"Oh shut your trap you over strung malinger!" The first obscene pawn yelled.
"Uh guys, can't we all just get along?" A castle asked.
"That's it!" Sirius yelled, jumping from his seat and effectively sending his chair flying. "I give up! I cannot work with these – these pawns of Satan!"
The Queen put her hands to her mouth. "Well I never-"
"Listen to me sonny-" The King began.
"No need your Majesties! I will make sure the hooligan does not get away with his crude tongue-" Said the one knight Sirius had left, unsheathing his white marble sword.
"Oh shut up you horse's ass-" The first pawn broke in.
"You're such a cantankerous individual, Mervin." Joseph, the 'expendable' pawn threw in.
"Mervin?" The Bishop snorted. "Your name is Mervin?"
"What of it?" Mervin, the beginning pawn asked bitterly. All the chess pieces, black and white alike, laughed. "Oh shut up!"
"Alright…" The Bishop hushed everyone. "…Mervin." They all burst out laughing again.
Sirius watched the board in amazement as they all picked on 'Mervin', the anger management needing pawn.
Jen sat, still slouched, fingers entwined below her nose. "Well it looks like I won." She stated with a smile.
Sirius grumbled and poured the chess pieces back into their little black velvet bag (with a lot of cursing on Mervin's part). "Yes well… I get black next time."
"Sure." Jen agreed with a smirk. "I think I can handle Mervin and the gang." Laughter was heard from the slightly shaking bag, and cursing from the aforementioned pawn. "Shall we get a snack?" Jen asked gleefully, jumping up. "I'm in the mood for some nachos, you?" Sirius grumbled and followed her downstairs from the sunroom across from Jen's room, on the fourth floor.
As Jen and Sirius descended the stairs they heard their father enter. Sirius and Jen shared an excited look and ran down to the third floor to see their father walk to the kitchen.
"Daddy!" Jen yelled, starting to run down to the main floor (second) with Sirius on her heels. Their father looked up and acknowledged them with a nod. He continued his walk to the kitchen.
"Why don't you go spend time with the children before dinner, Orion?" Mrs. Black asked, puring her husband a glass of red wine.
"I'm tired, Celica. I just got back from Russia I need to rest." Mr. Black yawned.
Sirius and Jen stopped where they were and his behind a statue of Chiron Black the Masterful (who, by legend, had ridden and tamed a male Unicorn at the age of 30, unscathed) to hear their parent's conversation. What teenager wouldn't?
Mrs. Black sighed. "Will you spend time with them tomorrow or are you too busy?" Mrs. Black's voice was cold. "Do you have some major assignment that needs to be done by tomorrow, that you can't put it off for a few hours?"
"Celica, please don't harass me tonight, I've had a long-"
"Day? Yea, so have I. A bloody Norwegian Ridgeback nearly ate one of my coworkers for not being properly secured. I have to undergo reports and write up pages of information and details as to why it happened. I, too, had a bad, long day, but I spent time with them earlier and plan to later tonight as well." Mrs. Black slammed the cupboard door closed, and its glass pane shattered onto the counter.
"Celica, I know your days aren't perfect, but you know I would if I could. I love them-"
"Do you?" Mrs. Black interrupted, fixing the broken shards. "Well I'll be damned if they know it. When was the last time you told them?"
Mr. Black faltered. "I-I don't know-"
"And what about the last time you showed them that you loved them? Nothing materialistic. Actions speak louder than words, Orion, and you've done shit with them since you've gotten promoted twelve years ago." Mrs. Black paused to collect herself and Mr. Black seemed to be chewing on her words. "So you know how many times I've gone to them during the night? All throughout their childhood, and even now they scream from nightmares-" Jen and Sirius looked at each other confused, then back at the scene before them "-and do you know who they're usually calling for? You.
"You Orion. They love you, but their screams tell me they think you deserted them. They didn't fear the boogie-man or monsters in their closest as children. They feared your permanent abandonment.
"You were never there to console when Jen broke up with her first boyfriend over the summer between second and third year, nor were you there when they came home for Christmas break fourth year to congratulate them on joining the Quidditch team. Sirius nearly got expelled this year and you don't even know why, do you?"
Sirius gulped and Jen squeezed her hand.
"He nearly got expelled?" Mr. Black asked, angry and completely dumbfounded by this information.
"And I wonder if you'll be there when they graduate. They're going into their seventh year, Orion, and moving out afterwards. By the time your life slows down, theirs will pick up and all that time you missed to toss a Quaffle with your son or lecture your daughter about boys will be gone.
"They will be gone." Mrs. Black finished, sitting at the table beside her husband. "Why are you afraid to love them?"
"I'm not afraid to love them, Celica. I'm afraid of them loving me too much. If I die on the job I don't want them distraught over it. I want them to be happy." Mr. Black said finally.
"Do you think they're happy with the way you treat them?" Mrs. Black whispered, standing. "Do you think they'd rather know and love you, or regret and forget you? The biggest step in healing after a loved ones death is remembering the good times, not the bad. Do you three have any good times together after their age of 5?
"Just love them, Orion. Love them like a father should. You're their father. Their father. Whatever that means to you, make it happen for them." Mrs. Black walked out of the kitchen wiping her eyes. She gasped when she spotted Sirius and Jen. Her daughter crying, and son angry. "I'm sorry you had to hear that." They heard a chair move sharply across the floor and saw their father come around the corner.
His face was pale and he was worn down. His regular stiff and straight stance was hanging and limber. He walked towards his children, trying to find the words that rested so heavily on his tongue, taunting him.
Jen backed up, tears going down her pink cheeks while Sirius stepped forward, guarding her from more pain, glaring at his father.
"Jen, don't cry…" Their father said despairingly, reaching forward slightly.
"What would you care?" Sirius spat. "You never calmed her tears before, you never cared."
Jen's voice cracked as she spoke. "Do you love us?"
Mr. Black's eyes widened. "What? Of course I do, pumpkin. I've always love you two, no matter what I've said or done-"
"Or not done." Sirius cut in sharply. "I had to hold your daughter for half an hour last month while she cried over you. Last month. And don't think it's the first or last time that will happen."
"Oh you know my name? I'm surprised." He interrupted sardonically.
"Don't take that tone of voice with me. I love you two and… and want to start over." He put his hands in front of himself. "I know it's farfetched and will take a while… but – what could I do to make it up?" He asked dejectedly.
"You can't." Sirius said, shoulders slumping. "But to start, take off the rest of the summer. Call in tomorrow and demand from now till September second to see us off to Hogwarts. That's the best you can do right now."
Mr. Black seemed hesitant. That was nearly two weeks… an unexpected two weeks off for his children's love? "Ok, I'll-I'll do it."
"And if they don't let you?" Sirius narrowed his eyes.
"I won't quit my job, Sirius, with the times we're in and facing. But trust me, they will give me it off." Mr. Black said, trying to persuade his son to believe him.
"Alright then." Sirius turned, put his arms around Jen and led her to the stairs, and up.
Mrs. Black beamed a watery smile at her husband. "I'm proud of you, love." She wrapped her arms around his neck and kissed him. "You know, before you make the call… there's something else you've been neglecting." She smiled seductively and pulled him into the basement. He complied eagerly.
Sirius and Jen continued to Sirius' room, fourth floor, top of the stairs. They, reading each other's minds, lay down on Sirius' bed and held each other. Jen tucked her head under Sirius' chin, and wrapped her arms around his waist. Sirius rested his chin atop her head and rubbed her back. They would lay like that for a while every since they were children, to feel secure in each other's arms – know that they were there for the other.
"Do you think he will, Sirius?" Jen asked quietly.
Sirius thought for moment. "Yes. He seemed desperate enough to get to know us, and he's never taken much time off anyways." He added bitterly. Then he groaned. "He's going to ask about the expulsion thing…"
Jen smiled and burrowed her head further into the crook of Sirius' neck. "It's ok, he doesn't know about Remus." Sirius felt her smile broaden against his skin. "What do you think they're doing right now?"
"Having sex." Him and Jen burst out laughing, then stopped abruptly with a synchronized: "Eeew…"
~ * ~
"Ok littlest brother, this is where I leave you, half an hour early. Have fun, come see me if you get bored and restless. I think I have a few dog biscuits on me if you're hungry." Romulus said, simultaneously patting Remus' back and his pocket.
Remus shook his head. "I'm not sure whether to take your humour of everything in life as a hindrance or a help."
"Oh help littlest brother, it only serves as a help. If you don't pop by this evening-" insert fake sniff here "-I'll understand."
"Sorry if I prefer my family alive, and not wreaking havoc on the people of Hogsmeade." Remus rolled his eyes and grabbed a stick. "I'll see you in the morning oldest brother." Remus said, about to prod the knot on the Willow. "Out of curiosity – where are you staying tonight?"
Romulus smiled. "That new lady at the Three Broomsticks asked me to stay at her place last month I was here. I nearly stayed the entire night at that pub… I bought her so many butterbeer after her shift was over…"
"You looked worse than me. You bought more than butterbeer oldest brother - you were pissed that night. Do you even know her name?" Remus asked, prodding the knot.
"Rosmerta, blimey she's a looker…" Romulus snapped back to reality when Remus laughed. "What?"
"You should see James and Sirius with her, all shameless flirting or joking around. She loves it when we go in… But I got to get going. See you tomorrow." Remus had to prod the knot once again and scramble in before the tree whipped him.
"James Potter and Sirius Black cannot stand up to the utter charm of the Lupins, Remus!" Remus heard his brother call, away from the Willow's grasp. Laughing to himself, Remus kept on through the tunnel. Having his brother around was great, made his anticipation towards the full moon dull a bit. Of course having Animagus friends was great, but they still took pity on him. Romulus' attitude slightly changed since he left for Australia (never mind the small accent he picked up) and he joked about nearly everything. He amused Remus by saying that life threw him shit, so he should take it as a gift, and thank life for it – just to piss life off.
Smiling, Remus speed walked to the trap door and pulled himself through. Remus looked around, no doubt by himself tonight. That brought a pang to his gut. It was going to be like last month when no one could make it… He kicked the door shut and dragged himself to the armchair. That walk through the tunnel, over roots, tripping over stones, and the long walk itself took a lot out of him. He plopped down onto it. He curled into a ball, resting his head on the armrest and tucking his feet between the seat cushion and other armrest. It was starting soon…
"S-so… c-cold…" He stuttered, his teeth chattering, his head splitting, and body shaking. He bared his teeth as the transformation began.
Crying out in agony when his back arched and lengthened, he fell off the chair. His body jerked as his muscles contracted and shaped themselves to that of a wolf. Five minutes later yellow pigment seeped through his normally light blue eyes and he howled, signalling the beginning of a restless, destructive, lonely night.
Moony stood from the floor, growling softly at his surroundings. So he was alone again this time, was he? So be it. He puffed out an angry breath through his long snout. He heard a creek upstairs in the bedroom. His bedroom. His territory.
Stealthily stalking up the dust covered stairs, Moony kept his teeth exposed and hackles raised. A few stomps echoed across the hard wood floor. He reached the upper floor and surreptitiously crept to the bedroom door that was open but a foot. It streamed light from the full moon onto Moony's paws then glinting in his ochre eyes.
A shadow fell before the light and hid the werewolf. Without a thought, Moony charged its victim, taking the tall creature by the neck and surprise.
An agonizing whinny escaped the creature's mouth, and a sharp kick with its hooves to Moony's hind legs shook the werewolf back to thinking where he now lay, down the hall.
The stag stumbled backwards from the attack and stared at the werewolf in shock with its great brown eyes. Deep red blood crept down the chestnut brown fur of the stag.
Moony whimpered and attempted to stand, but his left hind leg had received the almighty blow. Panting, he bowed his head and tried to forget the pain. He heard the hooves trot over to him and felt the antlers nudge his head. Moony, in pure restless anger, snapped and grabbed an antler, yet again surprising the bleeding Prongs that evening.
Prongs shook his head and attempted a rear. Finally waiting for Moony to release and come to his senses, Prongs stood in defeat. Moony, sensing this let go and looked at his friends' neck.
If Moony had recognized the creature as a stag, and still attacked in blind rage, Prongs wouldn't be alive to help his friend through the night. Not knowing what he was up against caused Moony's calculations to waver, and he missed the jugular by a few inches. Prongs walked backwards, unable to turn in the narrow hallway, and passed the stairs, facing them. Sobering up, Moony followed on a limp (Prongs didn't care at this point that his friend was hurt, he was bleeding for Merlin's sake…) and went down the steps. Prongs trailed cautiously on his not-made-for-stairs legs.
At the bottom he followed Moony's upright, slightly wagging tail. Reaching the main room they grappled and wrecked the furniture more than it was. The chair now had one armrest. Near morning Moony yawned, in turn getting one out of Prongs.
Bending forward on one front leg at a time, then pulling in and sitting on his hind legs, Prongs readied himself for sleep. Moony circled the spot a few times before tucking his thick black tail in and laying beside his friend. Resting his muzzle on the stag's back, the werewolf fell asleep.
With a slight moan Remus rolled over. Dammit that was a hard pillow… Remus propped himself on his elbows, eyes closed, he punched it a few times. His pillow groaned and croaked out a: "Bugger off you bloody idiot!"
Wait, his pillow groaned? Remus opened his now light blue eyes and saw that his pillow was none other than James' ribcage and spine. Apologizing, Remus sat up and rubbed his face. God his leg hurt. He winced as he stood and helped James do the same.
"Sorry about kicking you last night, mate." James apologized, gasping as he brought his arms to his side. He had spent the entire night (well… what they slept of it at least) on his stomach, head cradled by his crossed arms.
"Why are you apologizing? Look what I did to your neck!" Remus paled more than he already was after he told James to pull down the collar of his shirt, and expose his neck. "Bloody hell…" He muttered. "I'm so sorry James, I really am." He lightly touched it, making James swat his hand away.
"Jut because I don't want you to think that it was your fault, doesn't mean I'm going to pretend it feels like a soft summer breeze when you touch it." James snapped, letting go of his shirt.
Remus said he was sorry once more, and looked confused. "How did you get here Prongs?"
"My dad has an overnight excursion." He walked over to a boarded window. "I Flooed to the Three Broomsticks, walked to the back of this place, so as no one saw me, and climbed up the bedroom window." He squinted in the light that seeped through the cracks. "I knew you'd already be transformed by the time I'd have made it here." He looked at the village down below. "Think Romulus left yet?" He checked his watch. "It's 7 o'clock."
"Yea, he's probably en route." Hobbling beside his friend, Remus took another look at the wounds he inflicted. "How are you going to hide and explain those James?"
James took a shard of mirror from the floor, blew the dust from its surface, and examined both sides of his neck. "Well bugger me…" He whispered. There were two tears on each side from Moony's canines, and a few more dotted scratches from the less sharp teeth. The blood was smeared and dried down his neck, staining his shirt and stuck in his hair. "How's this: I got attacked by a crazed carrier owl and had to fend for my life?" Remus shook his head. "I dunno… I'll have a House-elf look at it, fix it up a bit."
"James," Remus sighed, "I don't think a House-elf can fix that. Just make sure you wash up before anyone sees it at the pub. Just think of what Madam Rosmerta would say…"
"I know… she'd butcher me herself, thinking I'd gone through the Forest. Well, I'd better go. See you in a week and a bit." James said, going into the kitchen, Remus following him.
"Sure. Thanks for coming by, and hey – congratulations on making Head Boy." Remus smiled.
"You're welcome Moony and thanks." James crawled onto the counter, over the sink and climbed out the window. He jumped onto the foot high grass and ran to the pub.
Remus left the Shack, travelled the tunnel, prodded the knot and met his brother on the other side. "Hey oldest brother."
Romulus smiled. "Hey, I brought you some butterbeer and toast." He handed them to Remus. "I know pumpkin juice or something would be healthier in the morning… but butterbeer just warms you right up – like a hug in a drink." Remus took them gratefully and laughed at his brother. Definitely got pissed last night… They began their trek back to Hogsmeade. "What happened to your leg?" Romulus asked, concerned.
Remus looked the best he could, sheepish. "Oh… got into a bit of a fight with a table." He said distractedly, he could tell Romulus was trying not to laugh. 'After I tried to bite its head off…' Remus added silently to himself.
He was really going to apologize to James next time he sees him…
"So how'd the date go?" Remus asked, throwing the crust to the ground for the owls or other birds to find.
"I think I passed out."
* * *
Ok, wow – I'm done the first chapter. *tear* Well, I hope you enjoyed it. A lot of emotions once again, but that's cause we're getting into each of their summers, and thus home life. Much more personal. Not all the chapters leading to Hogwarts will deal with each of them – this is the last. And when I read over it, I started to question my sanity when I reached the chess game part… I really did. Anywho – tell me what you think (in a review), and yea… my thanks for Chapter 30 of The Greatest Thing You'll Ever Learn…
everblue3: I know what you mean with the bar stools in the water. Although I have no memory of it (I was 3), my family and I went to Mexico, and there're pictures of it… The helium/Oompa Loompa thing was what my friends did. Picture 2 guys - one tall, hairy (like, he has a huge fro) and deep voiced; and the other average height, well, average everything, no high or low voice. Well, they sang the entire Oompa Loompa song with helium. I think it took them a few balloons… Five maybe? Ok, and the phrase "Lily will love you in them" has many meanings, eh? Ok, I see two. Possibly three. You've read my reviews for other stories and think they're informative? I really don't know which ones you've read (lol) but I think I really tried to 'review' (in the real sense of the word) all your chapters! Even with the odd anecdote… (I told Sarah that I told you about the 'dirty scrabble' game. We were talking about it (around 4 of us), and I brought it up. She went red and started banging her head on the table.) And you got the titles right too. *sighs* I can't surprise anyone these days… Anywho – thanks:):)
Star: Well here's the sequel! :) It wasn't as funny as it could be… well not so much not funny, but there were some darker things than usual. I'll try to remember to keep up the humour! ;) Thanks for the review!!
KeeperOfTheMoon: Lol – I'm glad you still love it! Hope you liked this chapter. :) Thanks!
LizMarauder4eva: Ok, I have to say this: You sound like my friend. I would honestly think you were her if I knew she read the books. Just the way you type, ex. lolz, I honestly thought you were her for a second, but that's done now. And the last one was long, eh? This one's longer! I'm trying to not keep upping them cause I don't want to end up with like, 20 000 words per chapter. I really couldn't type that much. Well I could, but I don't want to, not without going from updating once a week, to once every 2 weeks. ANYwho. Thanks for the review!
Beaver Buddy: Oh yes – hip hip hooray! Hope you liked the first chapter! Just as, if not more, eventful this time around, eh? Thanks for the review!
Moe23: Ah yes – a sequel. Makes me feel special – and in turn, you should feel special too. Evanescence? Being sold on TV? Dammit… and I have to wait another… 16 days! Damn. Anywho – thanks for the review!
penpunk: Yes, no waiting for sequel. I'd feel bad postponing it just cause I could. But I'm just nice that way. ;) I think you're one of three or so people who told me what you liked and didn't like… *lol* Thanks! I really wanted that. I think theirs comedic timing in writing… maybe it's comedic 'styling'? I don't know. I know, I don't like sad things… but we can't all be puppy dogs and sunshine, can we? (If only we could… *sighs*) And when do I find time to write? Ok, I'll let you in on a secret. I don't have school or work right now (taking a year off, and the restaurant I worked in ran out of business). I'm just mooching off my parents as much as I can until they threaten me with rent (which has happened – but only jokingly) or kick me out. But I am looking for work. And I tend to write late at night… after dinner to midnight is when I'm the most creative… Anywho… yes! See you in your next review! Thanks for the last one!
GreenEyedPickle: *LOL* Glad you liked the Oompa Loompa bit… I was really thinking of taking it out. Honestly – I think someone put crack in my mashed potatoes or something when I wrote that… It's something you and your friends would do? Well, it is something my friends did. And it really was the funniest thing… Yea, I like putting humour in the chapters, even the sad ones. It's like the comic relief characters in Shakespeare (not that I'm comparing my self to Shakespeare!!!) – you just need them. I like Remus and Jen the best too (and not cause my name is Jen, and that I'm in love with Remus… *looks around nervously*). I think I need some more James and Lily moments though… but Remus and Jen are so fun… ah well. Thanks for the great review!
~sundust~: I'm happy you think the last chapter was the greatest! :) Yes – you are yet another who has recognized the titles of my story… Ok, there's a slight problem with the gift this time around. You see I gave up tea (hot tea, cause Tuesday I accidentally had about 5 mugs of iced tea with my friends when we ate out. All you can eat fajitas baby… so I changed it from all tea to just hot tea…) and so a nice steaming cup of Earl Grey tea would do me wonders right now… (Hence the reason Lily has Earl Grey in the beginning… *blushes*) But if it weren't for Lent – I'd be using it! But I will take the plate, and hide the cup for another… 30 or so days. So, thank you for the review!! Hope you liked this one! ;)
TheSilverLady: Oh you think it's the best? Aww… thanks! So, Sirius is your favourite? Well, coming up (I think chapter 3…) has a lot of Sirius. Mmm… I do enjoy him too. Thanks for the review!! Hope you liked this chapter, too!
VoldemortsIllegitimateChild: Yes – and I updated again! Woo! *lol* Hope you liked this chapter, the beginning of more fun, as much! Thanks for the review!
geordie lass 4eva: Ooo… Brilliant you say? *blushes* Well that was very nice of you. Happy you like my writing, and hope you liked this chapter. ;) Thanks for the review!
Dani: *lol* Feel bad for Remus and Jen? I feel bad for stopping their…time together (as Romulus says), but it was just too fun. Oh good! I'm promised a review for every chapter? That's too cool! :):):) Well, thanks for all the reviews!
running-out-of-ink: No you haven't reviewed this before. ;) Aw, one of your favourites – how sweet. Ok, I took the 'love' to heart and deleted a few. (lol) But you mean when they say: "Bye, love" or "I love you"? Cause some people say I love you so much… but you mean the former, right? MSTT was one of my favourite parts as well – I was crying with laughter when I thought of it in bed. I'm not usually one to do that with my own stuff, but yea – I couldn't help it. It's one of those things you would have loved to be there for… Well, thanks for the review, and being truthful with the 'love' thing! Hope to see more of you!
kerry: *sighs* You amuse me… but you already knew that. I'm trying to remember if I commented on anything in the e-mails… damn – can't remember (although they're saved for the info you gave me…) Anywho – that's the second time you've commented on my musical taste. ;) (speak of the devil – Evanescence come on right now…) With the Remus and Jen part, I was thinking of having Troy pop in, or have Sirius follow her for something… but then I thought: Romulus – he'd be great! Although I think Sirius walking in on them would have been hilarious (wheels turning in head for future chapters… hmm… Sirius, eh?) I'll have to think about that… Ok then – thanks for the review! (and you won't be a Death Eater)
Nessie: You're dependant on me getting Sirius and Ara together? Well, it won't happen for a while… I think. But there is some S/A coming up (chapter 3 I think) that you can look forward to. :) Just remember that Sirius will always remain a little daft. Ok, I'll put you in (or you could wait till the 3rd sequel and be like… I dunno, a coworker. *lol* No, I'll probably put you in here…) Thanks for the review!
song*breeze: Hellohello. And yes – you are also correct with my title to be… Honestly – I think everyone has seen that movie. I still cry too. I think I've seen it about… 10 times? Not sure. Ok, and I'm confused… random Becki chapter? Did you ask to be in it at some point? Cause I have all the request reviews saved, but not one with yours on it… so could you brief me on that if I don't ask you online! Ok well, thanks for the review!! :)
LadyArwen: I did spoil Remus and Jen didn't I? Well, I wanted to keep my rating at PG-13… and God knows it would have been R in a few sentences… *lol* Wouldn't that have been a surprise for you guys? Ok… with Romulus – I'm not sure what part he'll play, but he will be there every now and again. Actually!!!! I just had an inspiration!! OMG!! YES! Yes – he will be there… I can see a plan forming in my head… I was going to try something for a while, but couldn't think of any characters to fill the space – but there we go! Thank you for bringing him up!! *Lol* Glad you liked the Oompa Loompa – I wasn't too sure how that'd go over… I was iffy on it myself. It would have been hilarious if you told me your fave/least faves for every chapter. Wow. That's 60 things all together! Oh I am so jealous that you're majoring in Ancient Egypt… I'd love that… maybe I'll take that in college/university… hmm… anywho! Thanks for the absolutely great review!
bananafanayou: Oh thank you! Sequel for Harry's time? No I highly doubt it. Highly. I don't want to impose on Harry and Co, and try to make them have all the correct quirks, thoughts, etc. That's why I like L/J fics. But, if ever I get bored writing original fiction when I'm done this series, I might just pop out with a one or two page short story of the HP universe. Thanks for the review. :)
mugglewolf: Thank you :) Well, here's the sequel, hope you enjoyed the first chapter!
SiriDragon: Oh I hate it when you can't review! It says either 'Cannot Find…' or 'Invalid request…' or something. Anywho – I'm happy you came back to review! Thanks so much!
Amethyst: Welcome, and at least you know who to talk to in your school about Hp! I think only… 10 people in my grade read HP… but that's a bunch of 18 year olds! But I'm outta there, so I don't really care anymore. And did you say there're only 350 people in your school?? We had 2000 in our 4th year of being open! Anywho – you said you'd act it out? Ok, explain to me how you'd do the peanut butter thing. *lol* Thanks for the review!!
Jess: Ah yes – Liv. Aw, all you said made me feel so good! You stayed up till 1 am to read this? I know how you feel… I've done that before, too. And I don't think you're babbling! I still think it's like… I don't know, psychedelic or something that you guys actually talk about this at school! Thanks for the fabulous review!
Liv: Wonder if Sirius and Ara get together? Well, in the mean time – do you like how he was her first kiss? I think it's cute. Tell Price I say hi. And as for a IJTL being long… I don't know if it'll reach the length of TGTYEL because that had all the story developments and character introduction… but I'm sure it'll be a fine length. But one thing I can assure is that the chapters will be longer. Like, compare this one (8,465 words) to Chapter 1 of TGTYEL (1,341 words) – big difference, eh? Well, thanks for the review!! Hope you liked this chapter!
luza: Aw, thanks for the congrats! Really, thanks for all the compliments! I always love new readers!! I'm happy you like my writing (and plot/characters… but it's sort of the writing that counts, eh?) Hope you liked the beginning of the sequel as much! Thank you!
magnolia: Thank you! Happy I'm still doing well! And you know what? You reviewed just before I posted this! Lucky you! I'm happy you liked the cookie monster. You're the only one who mentioned it!
And for everyone who reviewed other chapters? Here're your thanks: Dani ( :) Thanks!), amy (Glad you liked the prediction), magnolia (Yea, with the Figg thing… I'm working on it. I have a few ideas in the works don't worry. ;)), song*breeze (Hello again. 102 Dalmatians would be marvellous). Beaver Buddy (Ok, I'm working out some way of getting you in! If you have anymore info to send – do it in e-mail, ok?), nerdypurdy (Glad you're hooked, and I hope you enjoyed the last 12 chapters – what with MSTT and Valentines day!), Xnedra (That was a great review, honestly. With the speeches, I wrote them thinking of what I would feel and write if it were one of my friends that had died. So I cried while writing them – and am glad that they were well received.).
Alright, so we've started the sequel, and thus seventh year! Woo! Ok, so tell me what you think (in a review, what else?) and I'll see you all next week!!
Ok, just a quick question: Some people put '::waves::' in their reviews (you know who you guys are), and I'm wondering – are you actually waving at any point when you do that? Cause I wave back (*laughing so hard*), and I want to know if my waves are being received… That's all really.