Title: Love Potions Aren't Supposed to Be Black
Setting: Mostly at Hogwarts School Of Witchcraft and Wizardry; Marauder's Era
Fluff: Liberal. Appologies.
Spoilers: You should have read all the books, end of story.
Author's Notes: This takes place during the sixth year for the Marauders. I know the setting says it takes place in Hogwarts, but there involves some of Grimmauld Place and Diagon Alley and the like.
Disclaimer: It should be painfully obvious to you that Harry Potter and all it's names and trademarks are property of J.K Rowling, and Warner Brother's studios. I am neither, nor am I making a profit off of this publication. If I were, I wouldn't be babysitting tomorrow.
I heaved my battered and worn trunk out of the back my parent's beat-up car. Heaving it onto the sidewalk, next to my owl, Ophelia's cage, I returned to their car.
"Thank you, Mother, Father." I gave them each a small kiss on the cheek.
"Love you." My mother frowned, and refused to meet my eyes.
"Love you, too. Send Eric and Kelsey my love!" I leaned into the back to ruffle my younger brother Josh's hair.
"Be good." My father gruffly intoned, and my mother nodded.
"I will." With a finalpat on the arm, I was released.
I resisted the urge to skip across the station; I was finally free after three months of stiff, awkward silences and half-hearted attempts to include me in the family. That was the last summer I'd spend there; this May, I was turning seventeen, and I planned to find a nice flat in a wizarding neighborhood, and finally immerse myself in wizardry
Some people chose to live with their parents for a while after they were done with their schooling, but I couldn't stand the lonely house and it's painfully normal occupants any longer.
I bypassed the cart racks, choosing to struggle with my heavy trunk then to attempt to manage an awkward, wobbly cart. I managed to shove it across the station, and up against the brick column that would take my fellow students and me to platform Nine and Three Quarters. Before stepping into the column, I glanced around to make sure that no one would notice my sudden disappearance. The only other people in the station at the time who didn't appear to be Hogwarts-goers were boarding a late-morning commuter. I held my breath, and stepped through the barrier, my trunk following my obligingly.
Five minutes later, I sat, red faced and panting in a compartment of the purple Hogwarts Express. Compulsively, I smoothed a hand over my thick chestnut hair, and glanced at my reflection in the window to be sure I was all in one piece. A pair of blue eyes set in a round, olive-colored face, with pink lips. The thin bridge of my slender nose was sun-kissed, dotted with freckles. Not a beauty, but not a hag.
The door to my compartment rattled open, and a familiar face poked in. I plugged my ears in time to stifle the squeal that emitted from my pink-faced blonde friend. "You made it!" She bubbled, squeezing into the compartment beside me. "What'd you tell them this time?"
I laughed. "The usual. I told then that if they didn't let me go, I'd run away and play violin on the street corners for spare change."
Adriana let out a squawk of laughter, and her body shuddered with giggles. "Your parents would flip."
"They did." I beamed. I was quite pleased with my brattiness.
When Adri's wild giggles had subsided into chuckles, the train took off. Out the window, I spotted many students waving to parents and younger siblings, calling out last-minute goodbyes and reminders. Adriana soon joined them, bidding her short, stout father, and tall thin mother a cheerful farewell. I stared on wistfully, until we rounded a bend.
Adriana returned to her seat, and began chatting about her summer and the various holidays to exotic islands she had taken.
I listened intently, as she described her adventures, until there was a knock on the door. I slid the compartment door open, to be faced with three boys, all our age. "Can I help you?" I asked carefully, looking between the faces for a familiar sight. I recognized them for being in my classes through the years; they were part of the infamous quartet of Gryffindor troublemakers known causing havoc throughout the school on a regular basis.
"Yes, is there room in this compartment for four dashing bachelors?" The speaker, James I think his name was, leaned against the side of the compartment, knowing that it set his handsome male figure off to an advantage. He was thin, with messy black hair and laughing hazel eyes.
"Sure, if you see any, let them know." I stifled a grin as I spoke.
James looked rather put out; I guess he wasn't used to girls turning him down. The boy to his left, a short, pudgy boy with blonde hair plastered to his round had, laughed, a loud, obnoxious sound. The one to his left, Sirius Black, school swoon, elbowed the blonde one, saying, "Stuff it you two." He turned to me, and grinned charmingly. He had jawbone length black hair, and kind gray eyes that twinkled mischievously
"As you see, my friends and I lack seats, but we noticed that you and your charming friend over there are not using your remaining seats, so we were wondering if we could spend the remaining journey in your lovely little compartment, here." He looked expectantly at me, his grin still in place. James, on the right, was sniggering.
"Wow, Padfoot, that's a lot of big words." But 'Padfoot' ignored him, still looking expectantly in my direction.
"I'm sorry, but those seats are occu-" Interrupted in the middle of turning them down, I glared at Adrianna as she gently pushed me out of the doorway.
"Sure, come in." Adriana had appeared over my shoulder, and was glowing from being called 'lovely' by such a cute boy.
I admitted defeat, and relocated Ophie's cage to the rack above, where three other trunks soon joined her. The tawny owl screeched indignantly from being evicted because of mere boys. I poked a finger through the wire bars of her cage to stroke her head apologetically, muttering, "Blame Adriana."
Ophelia twittered in response, and I settled back into my seat.
"Love what you've done to the place." James commented, looking around the generic compartment with mock appreciation.
"Since we have the…pleasure of your company for an indefinite amount of time, would you mind introducing yourselves?"
"Certainly not. I'm James," He confirmed my guess as he gestured to himself. "That's Peter," Points to the blonde, who nods vigorously. "That over there is Sirius." He jerked his thumb at Sirius, who was staring out the window, spacing. "And Remus is in the Prefect's Car, but he'll track us down in a few minutes."
Adriana speaks for me this time. "I'm Adriana, and this is Olivia." I nod, and climb up again on my seat to fish in my trunk. I emerge with a pencil and thin booklet. I sit in my corner seat, my knees drawn up to my chest, my flip-flops abandoned on the floor, and the book open to the first page. I tuned out the conversations between the boys and
Adriana, and buried my nose in my book of music, reading the lined bars and round notes as though it were a fantasy novel. I didn't realize I was being watched, until…"You know, I've heard that musicians do that." I jumped, and glanced around the compartment. "But I really don't see how you can entertain yourself for hours on end, just staring at those bars, without you instrument, even."
I realized that Peter, James, and Adriana were deep in a Quidditch discussion, and the only person looking in my direction was Sirius. I blinked at him for a moment of two, taken off-guard by the unexpected attention.
"I'm just seeing what needs to be done. Scoping the territory first makes the conquering easier, right?"
I then returned to my music, pointedly telling him that I was done with out conversation.
She just sat there, her eyes moving along the row of shapes, humming purposefully to herself, and occasionally muttering about rests. Every now and then she would pluck the pencil out of its place behind her ear, and scribble something on the yellowish parchment, but mostly she just…read it.
And with her dark, glossy hair loosely pinned up in a bun, and her formidable gaze softened as it followed the trail of musical notes across the page, and her dark, slender fingers tapping gently at the edges of the page, her forehead wrinkled in concentration she looked…beautiful. Although I knew that, in factual terms, she was rather plain, I was drinking in the sight of her, from the way her green sweater hugged her thin frame, to the way her long lashes caressed her cheek.
I wanted to speak again: to ask her something just to hear her voice again. So I did. It took every ounce of my experience with the opposite gender to say smoothly, "Can you really play that?"
She looked up, looking a bit annoyed. Like someone disturbed from reading a favorite book, which, I suppose she was. "Yeah. I should be able too, it's bit tougher then I thought, though."
She made to turn back to her music, but I stopped her once again. "What do you play?"
"This here is for violin." She no longer made an attempt to be polite, she just wanted me to shut up.
But of course, I didn't comply. "What are you learning it for?"
This time, she closed the book, using her index finger to mark the page. "Self improvement. I like staying connected to my Muggle roots through music. Plus," She glanced out the window, where they day was becoming increasingly gloomy. "My parents like it when I play. And that essentially the only thing that makes them proud of me, anymore.
"Wow. That must be awful." She nodded vigorously.
"I don't mind them when they ignore me or something anymore, I just know that I've disappointed them by not leading a normal life. They don't like wizards or magic or the occult or anything, even though I've told them that Hogwarts isn't what they think it is."
"They'd be absolutely appalled at my mother's taste in décor." I couldn't help but sound bitter.
She cocked and eyebrow. "Parental issues yourself?"
I shrugged one shoulder. "More like entire family issues. Ever feel like an ugly duckling?" Probably not. She's too pretty for that.
"With older sister in law school, an older brother who's star quarterback at his high school, and an angelic younger brother? I'm about as black sheep as you can get." She was trying to lighten the situation.
With all her Muggle references, it was hard to tell exactly what she was saying, but I got the gist of it. "How about being the only family Gryffindor? Actually, I'm the first Black not to be put in Slytherin since the school was created."
My eyes widened. "Black? As in Regulus Black?" That name was a bad memory for me. I watched as Sirius looked away, out the window.
"Yeah. My brother." I nodded, trying not to be too revolted. He continued, almost grudgingly. "I'm sure you've seen my folks in the Prophet."
"No, I don't get the Prophet. My parents don't like owls flying around and whatnot…" I coughed. "So your brother takes after your parents, then?"
He nodded. "Dark wizards, the lot of them. It's a miracle they haven't disowned me yet. Or maybe it's just the opposite."
The compartment door slid open once again, and a brown-haired boy poked his face in. I recognized him as the fourth Marauder.
"What took you so long, Moony?" James asked. Taking his feet off the empty seat, reserved for this newcomer…Remus, I think they said his name was. Sirius got up to help him maneuver his trunk through the small room, and onto the rack without decapitating anyone.
I eyed the newcomer. He had brown hair a few shades lighter then my chocolate color, and was dangerously thin. He wore glasses, and he had already donned his school robes, which had grayed in the wash, had been patched or darned in multiple places; the hem had been let out more then once. A Prefect's badge was at home on his thin chest.
Once he had sat down in Sirius's vacated seat, his eyes traveled around the compartment, at James, Peter, Sirius's blurred shape through the frosted glass of the window, and then on to Adriana, then me. His brow furrowed.
"Why, may I ask, have you chosen to sit with the animals I call friends?" He asked, looking between the two of us. I shrugged. "They asked to sit here, and they're better then the Gobstone club."
"Ugh, I'm still getting that goop out of my hair. I'm Adriana, and that's Olivia."
"Pleasure. I'm Remus, also known as Moony." He rolled his eyes, giving us a "don't ask" look.
Sirius had finished shuffling the trunks around, and promptly collapsed into the only remaining seat, between Adriana and myself. I had once again returned to my music, but as soon as he sat down, Sirius tugged the book out of my hands. I glared at him, but he only smiled, saying, "You have four single and dashing young men, as well as your attractive friend, here willing to converse with you, so put that away; you'll have plenty of time at school."
I rolled my eyes. "Yes, Dad. Now stop hitting on Adriana, she's already got a boyfriend."
Adriana smirked at me. "Now, now, jealousy does nothing for the complexion."
"Neither does infidelity." I muttered, but Sirius, being the closest to me, was the only one to hear. He let out a loud, bark-like laugh, and I found myself grinning.
The rest of the trip was fairly uneventful. Except for the time when James spotted Lily Evans. We had all been laughing at a joke James had just cracked, when he got up to peer out the frosted glass window. "What is it?" Adriana asked.
"It's her," He said, his eyes shining. He slid open the compartment door, and shouted,
"How could he know it was her? The glass makes everything all blurry." I asked, confused.
The other three rolled their eyes, and chorused, "The hair."
"James has been harboring a growing affection for Miss Evans since sometime in the middle of second year. If you hang around him for more than two hours, the subject will come up. He used to be quite a meanie to her, but he's gotten better."
Sirius snorted. "Meanie, Remus? Really…"
Meanwhile, James had gotten Lily's attention with a second, louder, "Evans!"
Lily adopted a deer in the headlights look, covered her face with her hair, and dived into the nearest compartment.
"I missed you too, sweet pea!" He called, and shut the door, grinning from ear to ear as he fell back into his seat. "Man, I missed her." He looked around at all the guys." This is gonna be the year, I know it! This is the year that Lily Evans will be my girl."
"You do realize that's the fifth year running you've said that." Sirius was unimpressed by
James's love struck speech.
"She seems to be quite frightened, James. You've got your work cut out of you," Adriana observed.
"Jealousy is bad for the complexion." I informed her.
"Touché." She replied. "I have a boyfriend who I love very much, thank you."
I rolled my eyes, and turned to the window, watching the beginnings of a dark rain cloud form above.
Author's Note: I am actually quite proud of this, and that's the first time I can say that about my writing. You can go ahead an flame me, as long as you are intelligent about it, and don't review with something along the lines of: "lily is remus', u bich!1!1!111" If that happens, you will get a form letter review response. Yes, I do have a form letter drawn up.
By all means, correct any of my misspellings in names. My brother has raided my store of Harry Potter books, and while I am all too happy to let him enjoy them, I highly doubt that I will ever get them back. So, feel free to correct me, I will not bite.
And finally, to any religious people out there. I am not a religion basher. All reference to religion in the story, for instance, the presence of Catholic-themed items in Olivia's trunk, and her distain for them, are not my personal comments on the religion. I have several Catholic friends, and I highly respect the religion and all others. I do not, however, respect the belief that Harry Potter is work of the devil, nor do I believe that if you are Catholic, you think that. However, that is why this story contains some slight religious reference. If you find it offending or hurtful, notify me in the politest way possible, and I will be sure to revise it out.
Author's Note Two: Hey, guys. I'm back. I've started by editing and polishing these first few chapters, which need a lot of work done on them in order for them to be acceptable.
If this is your first time reading this, then only read chapters with two author's notes at the end, and only pay attention to the first author's note. If this is your second time reading this, go ahead and read it anyways; I'm doing some major plot changes and such, just to make things flow better.
Also, if my beta is still around, I'd like to talk to her again, although I think she's grown out of fanfiction…
In which case, I'm looking for a beta, someone to point out inconsistencies, grammar and spelling errors, typos, awkward points, the like. You don't necessarily have to be nice about it, but that would be cool, too. If you're interested in beta-ing, even if you've never beta-ed before, contact me via fanfiction. My e-mail is also available.