Dreaming of You

Author's Note:  Thank you to PikaCheeka, Rain in Fire, and Adelina.  They know why.

If you're wondering – yes, the original author's note has been removed.

Part 1 - Lianne

Chapter 1

            "Come on, Li, he's really cute."  Nichole looked at Lianne beseechingly.  "Let me set you up with him.  You'll like him, I know you will."

            "I told you, Nichole, I've got a boyfriend."  Lianne brushed back her dark brown hair as she bent down to get at her locker.  Out of her friend's eyeshot, she scowled at the conversation she knew was coming.  Why couldn't Nichole understand?

            "Oh, him."  Nichole dismissed him with a wave of her hand.  "He's not real, Li."

            "He's real to me."  Lianne rummaged around for her art folder and sketchbook.  "Can you see my sketchbook?  Oh, never mind, it's under my history book."

            "Don't change the subject, Li."  Nichole sighed.  "You can't date a book character."

            "Why?" Lianne asked absently, standing up and kicking her locker closed.  She could've carried on this conversation while asleep, they'd had it so often.

            "It isn't normal, that's why."  Nichole pursed her lips.  "I really think you'd like Jeff, if you'd just give him a chance - "

            "Would you cheat on Taylor?" Lianne interrupted.

            "Of course not!" Nichole said indignantly.  "What do you take me for?"

            "Then why do you expect me to cheat on Sirius?"  With that, Lianne turned around and stalked away.

"Autumn!  Hey, Autumn, wait up!"

            Autumn turned around.  "Oh, hey, Casey.  How goes it?"

            Casey sighed.  "About as well as you'd expect, considering I just got out of Mrs. Drake's class."

            "That bad?"  Autumn winced sympathetically.  "Poor you."

            "Yeah."  Casey grinned suddenly.  "But I do have Paul in there, to cheer me up."

            "Oh, God, not the romance!"  Autumn made gagging noises in the back of her throat.  "Don't start, Casey, please don't start!"

            "Ok, ok, I won't."  Casey shook her head in resignation.  "But you've got to find a guy eventually."

            "Got one."  Autumn waited challengingly for Casey to deny it.

            "Would it be a waste of breath to tell you otherwise?" Casey asked, laughing.

            "Yup."  Autumn nodded decisively.  She raised her voice a little.  "I love Draco Malfoy, and the whole world can know about it!"

            Several people in her vicinity turned to look at her a little strangely, but since most high schoolers didn't read Harry Potter, no one knew who she was talking about.

            Except for one person.

            "Excuse me, but did you say 'Draco Malfoy', as in from the Potter books?" a young-looking brunette asked hopefully.

            "Yeah, so?"  Autumn looked at the girl warily.  She was probably a freshman, as she didn't have the look of a hardened veteran that most juniors and seniors wore, and Autumn would've recognized a fellow sophomore.

            "That's – that's awesome!"  The girl's dark green eyes lit up.  "I mean… I've never met anyone before who… who actually – "

            "If you're from the psychology class, you can drop dead," Autumn snapped.  "I don't need to see a shrink, especially not a geeky wanna-be."

            "No, no, I'm not!" the girl exclaimed.  "I'm a Potter fan, too!"

            "Really?"  Autumn grinned in relief.  "Oh, well, that's ok, then!"  She paused, cautious once more.  "You aren't in love with Draco, too, are you?"

            "No, definitely not."  The girl shook her head firmly.  "Sirius Black's my soul mate!"

            Just as Autumn opened her mouth, the bell rang.  "Aw, crap!  We're late!"  She frowned.  "Say, what lunch period have you got?"

            "B lunch till the end of the year," the girl answered.  "You?"

            "The same."  Autumn grinned.  "Meet you in the courtyard?"

            "Sure!"  The girl gasped.  "Oh, by the way, I'm Lianne."

            "I'm Autumn, but I've kinda got to run.  Mr. Howe's gonna murder me as it is."  She waved, then hurried for her next class as quickly as she could without getting a detention from the security guards for running.

            Hazel buried herself in her book, trying to ignore the chattering crowds jostling and shoving around her.  Couldn't they see she was trying to read?  Just because it was lunchtime was no reason to push people.

            Finally, most of the students either drifted into the cafeteria or found other tables in the courtyard, leaving the junior in peace.

            Until two girls came up beside her.

            "Can we sit here?" the younger girl asked, tacking on "Please?" as an afterthought.

            Hazel sighed, but nodded.  "Don't bother me," she ordered, picking up her sandwich.  She didn't trust school food.

            It wasn't that she was anti-social.  She had several friends - but all of them had A lunch.  And in her experience, many of the girls who tried to sit with her were the prissy sort of girly-girl who wanted to try to gossip with her about boys, makeup, clothes, and who other girls were dating.  Hazel thought the last one was none of her business, had no interest in discussing the middle two, and would drop dead before spreading her love life across the school, which eliminated the first.

            She tuned out the two girls, burrowing into The Fellowship of the Ring.  So what if she'd read it before?  It was still good.  After a while, though, ignoring the other girls' conversation became difficult.  The older girl with black curls had one of those charismatic voices you couldn't help but listen to, and the brunette had a bright, carrying laugh that continually pierced her consciousness.

            Much as Hazel tried to avoid it, she ended up listening in.

            "Yeah, I've been in love for… probably over a year, now," the brunette was saying, grinning in a self-deprecatory sort of way.  "It didn't hit me till the second time, but then, wham!  Head over heels."

            "I fell right away," the black-haired girl admitted, grinning back.  "First time I met him in Madame Malkin's."

            Hazel looked up sharply.  Madame Malkin's? she thought suspiciously.  That's from the Harry Potter books - that's where Harry met Draco.

            "Oh, are we talking too loud?" the older girl asked, her brown eyes just a shade too innocent, as were the other girl's dark green eyes.  "I'm sorry, we just get so excited about the Harry Potter series - "

            "You've read it, too?"  Hazel sat up straight, her grey eyes bright.  "I knew that's what you had to be talking about, with Madame Malkin's!"

            "Yup, another Potter fan."  The brunette nodded in satisfaction.  "I thought so."  She grinned up at Hazel.  "I'm Lianne Treyvan, and this is Autumn… Autumn…"  She paused, frowning.

            "Autumn Vance," the brown-eyed girl filled in.  "Yeah, anyone who reads Lord of the Rings is almost definitely a Potter fan, too."

            "I guess."  Hazel smiled.  "I'm Hazel Randel.  Nice to meet you."  She frowned suddenly, the conversation she'd overheard coming back to her.  "Wait - you're in love with Harry, too?"

            "Too?" Lianne echoed - then laughed.  "Aha, another psycho!  So Harry's the one who captured your heart?"

            Hazel drew away, cautious.  What in the world had possessed her to blurt out that too?  "I'm not psycho."

            "Course you are."  Autumn grinned.  "Same as us.  Don't worry, we're kindred spirits."

            "Sirius Black and Draco Malfoy are our knights in shining armor," Lianne explained.

            "Speak for yourself!" Autumn said indignantly.  "I won't be some guy's damsel in distress.  He tries to romance me, he can have a fist in his face!"

            Hazel privately thought that Autumn looked the type who just might carry out on her threat, too.  Definitely not a prissy cheerleader type.

            "You'd hit Draco?" Lianne asked in interest.

            "I don't do the romance thing," Autumn replied.  "No kissing, hugging, holding hands, or anything of the sort."

            "I would if it was Sirius offering."  Lianne grinned mischievously.

            "You know, he is about twenty years older than you," Hazel felt obligated to point out.  "The fact that he's a book character aside, any relationship would be illegal."

            "Who cares?"  Lianne thrust her chin into the air defiantly.  "Soul mates are soul mates.  Love will find a way."

            "Could you get any more cliched?"  Autumn mimed gagging.  "You sound like an inspirational greeting card."

            "Actually, no, she didn't," Hazel countered, smiling.  "She was worse."

            "Lianne Treyvan, you put that sketchbook away and go to bed right this minute!"

            Lianne scowled at her drawing for a moment, but called back, "Ok, ok, I'm done, I'm done!"  She closed the sketchbook with a sigh and transferred her art materials from the bed to her desk.  "Goodnight!"

            Her mother poked her head in the doorway, smiling at her youngest child.  "Night, Li.  Love you."

            "Love you."  Lianne climbed into bed as her mother flipped off the light.  She listened, grinning in delight, as her mother had to tell her older brother off when she discovered he'd put off his English paper until just then.

            Lianne stared at the ceiling, watching the shadows dance over it.  For the longest time, she'd been afraid of the dark… now, she wasn't.  When she'd fallen for Sirius, when she'd discovered that he lived in shadows, to hide from the Ministry, she'd begun seeing him in every darkened room.  All right, she was obsessed… but it had helped get rid of her nightlight, hadn't it?

            Her mind drifted back to the conversation at lunch.  What if I really did meet Sirius? she wondered, already half-asleep.  What would I really do?  She imagined kissing him on the lips.  No… it would be fun, but he might not be too pleased.  After all, he is a lot older than me.  Would she just introduce herself?  How uninteresting.  No, it would have to be something more fun.

            Lianne's gaze fell on her sketchbook.  That was it, she could ask him to pose!  Well, he probably wouldn't, so maybe she wouldn't exactly ask first, but she could show him her picture when she was done, and that would be an excellent way to strike up a conversation.

            She drifted off to sleep, imagining out how her first encounter with Sirius ought to go.

            "Sorry, Autumn, I've got to go," Casey apologized.  "Mom says go to bed."

            "Talk to you later, then," Autumn said, smiling even though she knew Casey couldn't see over the phone.

            "Later."  Casey hung up.

            Autumn gently put the phone back on its hook, so as not to wake her father.  He'd never actually said she couldn't be on the phone this late, but that didn't necessarily mean anything.  It was nearly midnight, and parents tended to have funny ideas about how late kids should stay awake, even on weekends.

            Too bad I couldn't just call Draco up on the phone, Autumn thought with a grin.  Wouldn't that be interesting?  "Hi, Draco, you don't know me, but I just wanted to say hello."  Sure.  And where would he get a telephone in the first place?  She laughed at her own wishful thinking.  Watch it, Autumn.  You wouldn't want to go all optimistic, now, would you?

            "Hey, Erin," Hazel said, answering the phone when she saw her cousin's number on the caller ID.

            "Hi, Hazel," Erin Conner replied, the stuffed-up quality of her voice explaining why she hadn't been in school that day.  "How goes it?"

            "Not bad."  Hazel twined the telephone cord around her fingers.  "I see you were sick."

            "A cold," her cousin confirmed.  "I should be back at school tomorrow, though… mom says it's one of those three-day bugs, and I had it all weekend."  Her voice brightened.  "But I did get a chance to read those books you've been talking about, though."

            "The Harry Potter series?"  Hazel grinned.  "How'd you like them?"

            "I… liked Remus Lupin," Erin admitted, and Hazel heard the blush in the eighteen-year-old's voice.  "He seems nice."

            "Yes, he does," Hazel agreed, her voice slightly teasing.  "Going to join the Lunatic Love Association?"

            "The what?" Erin asked suspiciously.

            "I met two other girls today who have obsessions just like mine, and now you say you've got one, too," Hazel explained.  "Lianne Treyvan and Autumn Vance.  They've fallen in love with Sirius Black and Draco Malfoy, respectively, though Autumn keeps denying it."

            "Lianne Treyvan?" Erin repeated thoughtfully.  "I think I know her.  Yeah, she's in my art class, isn't she?  Short girl, layered brown hair?"

            "That sounds like her," Hazel agreed.  "You should introduce yourself… in fact, if you want, I could introduce you to Autumn, too.  I think you'd all like each other."

            "We probably would."  Erin laughed.  "The Lunatic Love Association… I like it."

Chapter 2

In sleep he sang to me,

In dreams he came -

That voice which calls to me

And speaks my name…

And do I dream again?

For now I find

The Phantom of the Opera is there…

Inside my mind.

            "Oh, no.  No, no, no."  Lianne shook her head violently.  "Pettigrew is much worse than Voldemort."

            "You've got to be joking, Li."  Autumn laughed.  After nearly a month, she, Lianne, Hazel, and Erin had grown to be close friends, and always sat together during lunch.  And argued about the Potter books, of course.  "Voldemort kills people.  He does the Muggle torturing thing.  He's the main villain."

            "I don't know," Erin broke in thoughtfully.  "I mean, at least Voldemort is openly evil.  Pettigrew was a sneaky little traitor.  He double-crossed all his friends!"

            "Well, I was thinking more because he got Sirius thrown in Azkaban, but yes, there's that," Lianne said, grinning.

            "You're obsessed."  Hazel looked up from her book, Magic's Promise, shaking her head wryly.

            "So are you," Lianne pointed out.

            "True, but I'm not openly insane," Hazel replied.

            "Insane?  Me?"  Lianne stared at the other three in wide-eyed innocence.  "Do you really think I'm insane?"

            "No, Li," Autumn said reassuringly.  "Don't worry.  We know you're insane."

            "Speaking of insane…"  Lianne frowned.  "I had the weirdest dream last night."

            "Not the one about Sirius and the swimming pool of green Jello again, please," Erin said, making a face.  "If that was it, I don't want to hear about it."

            "No, I made that one up to frighten you," Lianne said, her eyes strangely serious.  "This one was… really freaky.  It was about Sirius, yes… but…"

~*~ the previous night ~*~

            Lianne stood in the middle of a huge hallway, looking around curiously.  What was going on?  She knew she was dreaming ("I could remember going to sleep, and waking up is one of those things you tend to know about.") but where she was, she couldn't imagine.  Which was strange, since in her variety of dream, she usually knew things like that.

            She saw several doors leading out of the hall, but she didn't quite dare go through any of them.  This could very easily turn into a nightmare.  Besides, if there was something here her subconscious wanted her to see, it'd show up sooner or later, whether she went searching for it or not.  She sat down on the floor to wait.

            After a huge amount of time had passed ("I swear, I've never been so bored in a dream in my life!") she heard footsteps.  "About time," she muttered, getting to her feet.  "Stupid subconscious, dragging a girl out of bed at this hour!"  Then, much to her disgust, the footsteps passed her by.  "Great.  Do I have to do everything myself?"

            She sighed, then walked hesitantly towards the door closest to which the sound had come from.  "This had better not turn out to be a nightmare," she said threateningly to whoever happened to be listening.  Opening the door, she slipped through as quietly as she knew how.  Which wasn't very, as she immediately lost her balance by trying to walk on her tiptoes and fell over, the door slamming behind her with a clang.  ("Which is different from normal how?"  "Quiet.  I am the one telling this story, thank you!")

            A tall, black-haired boy spun around, yelling in surprise.  He gave Lianne a suspicious look, which she hardly noticed.  ("I knew him.  I knew him.  Not like you usually know people in dreams, but the way you know someone you've known all your life.  I couldn't have thought he was anyone else, not if he'd been trying to confuse me.  I'd know him anywhere.")

            "Sirius Black…" Lianne breathed, scrambling to her feet, wishing that for once in her life, she could manage it gracefully.  ("I don't know why I was so surprised.  I mean, he's kinda a recurring character in my dreams, but this was different.  Not just because he was younger, my age, but something about this whole dream was weird.")

            "You… don't go to school here," Sirius said, studying her in the puzzled way of someone trying to match a name to a face that's just vaguely familiar.

            "Er… no," Lianne agreed, making no attempts to hide the fact that she was staring outright.  He was just as good-looking as she'd thought he would be, tall and lanky, with big brown eyes and thick black hair that was just shoulder-length.  This was the person she'd been trying to capture on paper ever since she'd met him in the book series.  "No, I don't."

            "You're American," he added.  Lianne was unsure whether he considered this to be a point in her favor or against her.

            "I wish I was British," she offered.

            He half grinned, before remembering that she was probably some sort of American spy or something.  Maybe the man-eating zucchinis had sent her.  "How'd you get here, anyway?"

            Lianne shrugged.  "I dunno.  I was just back home in bed asleep, and then I was here."  She looked around in interest.  "Is this really Hogwarts?"  ("It didn't look anything like I'd imagined.  When they say stone, they don't mean that pretty white marble stuff.  This place was rock.")

            "Obviously."  Sirius sighed.  "Ok, I give up, who are you?  And how the heck do you know me?"

            "I'm Lianne Treyvan," she told him.  "And…"  ("Well, what would you have said?  I mean, 'you're a character in a book I read' seems to lack that certain something.")            "And…" Sirius prompted.  "You were going to say how you know me."

            "I'm special?" Lianne tried, falling back on the time-honored response of people everywhere who don't want to give away all their information.

            "I'm special, too," Sirius said calmly.  "I expect my suddenly finding myself outside the front hall has something to do with you?"

            "Huh?" Lianne asked, confused.  ("As usual."  "Do you want to hear this or not?  Shush!")

            "Like you, I was in bed, asleep, until I suddenly found myself out here in the middle of the school, very far away from Gryffindor Tower.  I was about to go back to bed when you fell over back there."  Sirius narrowed his eyes at her.  "And you still haven't explained how you know me."

            "Wow, that's really weird," Lianne said, ignoring the demands for an explanation.  "Usually my dreams are a lot more straightforward than this.  And you always seem to know how it is I know you."

            "You dream about me?"  Sirius clearly didn't know whether to be flattered or disturbed, and after several moments of being unable to decide, settled on bewildered.

            "Um… sorta kinda maybe," Lianne said, grinning embarrassedly.  "I mean, I'm dreaming now, right?"

            Sirius blinked.  "No, I'm dreaming.  This is my dream, I'm sure I'd know if it wasn't."

            Lianne blinked, dumfounded. ("Well, it's not exactly the sort of thing you expect.  Maybe you don't know if you're dreaming, but the other people never insist that it's their dream."  "They do in Wonderland."  "Yes, but I'm not Alice.")  "Your dream?"  She smiled sweetly.  "So you dream about me?  Why, Sirius Black, I am honored!"

            Sirius blushed, looking annoyed with himself.  Then he seemed to decide that served no useful purpose, and was annoyed with Lianne instead.  "There you go again, acting like you know me!"

            "Of course I do, if it's your dream," she pointed out.  "Rather a dull dream, isn't it?  Couldn't you have made it more interesting?  A few flying saucers, or maybe a dragon or two?  That's not too much to ask, is it, after you yanked me out of a sound sleep to come visit you here?"

            "I've met dragons, you wouldn't like them," Sirius told her, rubbing his shoulder ruefully.  "I've got a scar that'll take years to fade, after James got the bright idea to see if we could track down some wild British dragons last summer."  He glared at her.  "And my dreams are not uninteresting!"

            "This one is," Lianne replied.  "Are you sure you don't want to make it more interesting?"

            "How am I supposed to do that?" Sirius snapped. ("Now we know why Li hasn't got a boyfriend.  Her method of showing she likes someone is to annoy him to death."  "Quiet, you.")

            "You could try this."  Lianne moved forward to kiss him…

            "And…" Erin prompted when Lianne stopped talking.

            "And my brother knocked a table over on his way to the bathroom."  Lianne scowled.  "I still haven't forgiven him.  That dream might've been weird, but it was the best one I've had yet."

            "You're lucky."  Hazel grinned.  "I wish I could have a dream like that about Harry.  You'd better write yours down, you'll kick yourself if you forget it."

            "First thing I did," Lianne said, somewhat indignantly.  "And I'd never forget this dream.  I can still remember it, as if it actually happened."

            "That is weird."  Erin frowned thoughtfully.

"Even for you," Autumn added.

            "Gee, thanks."  Lianne made a face.

            Autumn opened her mouth to make a retort, but the bell cut her off, signaling the end of lunch.  "Oh, wonderful.  See you all tomorrow, then."  With that, they scattered their separate ways.

            Autumn laid back on her bed, playing with the telephone cord.  Her father was out, and wouldn't be home till past midnight.  Normally, she'd call one of her friends, but Casey was out of town, Erin was studying, Hazel wasn't home, and Lianne's line was busy.  She supposed she could always study for one of her classes, but she didn't really have anything in particular she felt like going over.  She wished someone would call her.

            It was like a little voice had whispered in her ear, "Granted."  The telephone jangled impatiently, waiting for her to lift it and speak.

            She snatched it up.  But before she could say a word, the person on the other end snapped, "Yes?  What?"

            "Sorry?"  Autumn frowned.  This was a boy's voice, about her age, but not someone she knew from school.  She'd have remembered his voice, a light tenor that would be pleasant to listen to, if only he'd speak more gently.  "Who's calling, please?"

            "What do you mean, calling?  You called me!" the boy sneered querulously.  "And it's Draco Malfoy.  Who did you think it was?"

Author's Note:  Yes, I know, where did Draco get a phone?  All will be explained in the next part, which will quite cleverly be titled "Autumn".  Anyway, disclaimer.  Autumn, Hazel, and Erin belong to the authors they are based upon.  Lianne is mine.  Potter and Company belong to JK Rowling, who is kind enough to let us fanfic writers play with her characters.  The various books I mentioned belong to their respective authors.  The other characters are - I'm pretty sure - all mine.  Zhai'helleva!