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HP stories following Canon after Deathly Hallows >> Chapter One: Back At The Burrow by SisterNightfall

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So...when did I begin to see James Sirius Potter as more than my best friend? Honestly, that's a hard question to answer. I won't deny that from the day I met him on the train before my first year...I always had a strange reaction around him. I don't really know what it was...a twitch, a stomach flip? The thing is that I never noticed it. I was too busy being friends with the git. We didn't have time for romance. Yes, many girls had it bad for the popular James Sirius Potter, son of the famous Harry Potter and retired Holyhead Harpy Quidditch player, Ginny Weasley...not to mention that he is also Gryffindor seeker...and he's freaking hilarious and knows how to charm the ladies. But, he was never interested...well...until last year. But I'm not counting that. He and I were too busy coming up with school pranks that probably could rival Fred and George Weasley's back in the old days. We were also preoccupied with challenging each other to Quidditch games, Wizard Snap and even chess, but we kind of gave up on that when Rose's dad decided to sit a game against both of us and kicked our asses.

So all in all...I was just too daft to see him as anymore than a brother, even if something inside of me was telling me that there was way more to it than that. I guess I can say that I truly started to fancy him last year after a Quidditch practice during April. (Yes, I am on the Quidditch team as a beater...and a pretty damn good one at that, if I say so myself.) I had just gotten out of the showers and then I saw him out in the sun...shirtless...his godlike body totally halting me in my tracks…not to mention his messy wet dark hair totally shaggy and all over the place. He turned around, the sun catching his warm chocolate eyes...and he smiled at me. Just the normal James smile. But for some reason, it was different. It was more beautiful than ever. That's when I felt like I was smacked in the face with a bludger and it gave me sight to see again. Kind of like in the Bible.

I remember that he laughed...his laughter ringing through my veins and pounding through every pore of my body, "Enjoying the view, Els?"

I remember my cheeks turning bright red, but Elaquay Smithson never backs downs, not even from total embarassment and shock. "You wish, Potter." I gave him a smirk and spun around, turning back toward the castle, my heart pounding and my head in a complete whirlwind.

I remember telling myself that James is like my brother, and that I'm not supposed to like him. Then I asked myself why I am freaking out. It's just James. He's the one who helped me convince the elves to run around and cover the whole school with stink pellets filled with dung that turns you into a parrot when you smell it for Christ's sake (that was a complete hilarious disaster)! But it's different now. It's stuck. I am now infatuated with James Potter, and that may be a bit of a problem.

So...now, I'm at the Burrow...and I am damn happy. Happier than ever before. There's the usual reasons why I'm so happy to be away from home. One, the stupid muggle private school Brits who absolutely despise me due to my American heritage and accent, the complete boredom of living with my nightmare of a mom and her stupid husband Jared (who can kiss my ass), and of course...I get to be with my best friends. I get to enjoy James's grandma's cooking, which consists of damn good British heaven, I get to stay up and gossip with Rose all night, I get to play Quidditch with everyone out in their badass overgrown field they call a quidditch pitch, and James and I can walk for hours in the woods, talking about nothing but devious plans and pranks that can rival the Weasley Wizard Wheezes.

But there's a new reason to be added to the list now. I get to see James....just to see him. I get to see James and be with him all summer, and hope something might happen. But really, what are the chances of that? I could see it in his eyes that he sees me as nothing more than a sister, or one of the guys.

But I can only hope. I hate that though. Elaquay doesn't pine. She just doesn't. But that's exactly what I'm doing, and it's hopeless. I sometimes wonder why the hell I even am into the guy. He's thickheaded, difficult, a bit arrogant, and often times rude and irritating. Yes, he's gorgeous, but if that's all it is...then I am letting a shallow infatuation take over me.

But no, there is more to it than that. James is my best friend. He always can make me smile no matter how upset I am, I can always turn to him for basically anything, and he's protective of me when he needs to be, but treats me as his equal and understands that I want to fight my own battles. He just knows me so well. It's like God...or whatever force is ruling over this universe, shaped him to be my best friend. But....lover? Who knows?

This is what is running through my head every day...even as I'm standing in the living room of the Burrow, my favorite house ever...being suffocated by James's grandma. Mrs. Weasley Senior is a short and stocky woman with the friendliest smile I have ever seen. I immediately took a liking to her, though she can be a bit high strung and overbearing.

"Elaquay dear, I'm so happy you are here. My, you've gotten so thin. We'll fix that right up though won't we? Dinner is going to be in an hour, so you can freshen up upstairs. Rose and James will be absolutely delighted to know that you've arrived." She kissed me on the cheek and sent me off. I found myself grinning like an idiot. I’m so glad that I’m back with the Weasleys and the Potters. I feel more at home with them than I ever have with my mom and her husband, Jared.

“Oh…and dear, please leave your belongings down here. I’ll take care of them for you.” Mrs. Weasley Senior said as she used her wand to chop up numerous amounts of potatoes, her red hair frizzing under the heat of the sizzling frying pan.

“Um…you sure? It’s not that heavy.” I said, my voice cautious. I hated it when I feel guilty, but I often do…especially when awesome people like James’ grandma offers to take all of my stuff up to the room for me.

“I insist. Don’ t forget dear that I am a fully trained witch and I did defeat one of the most dangerous death eaters of all time during the war. I think I can manage.” She looked over her shoulder and gave a sweet smile, her eyes twinkling. I couldn’t help but grin back at her whole heartedly. Whenever I look at her and think of the famous wizarding war and how much of a part this family played in it, I can’t help but think of how badass they are. I mean, seriously! They’re all on freaking wizard cards! How epic would that be to see your picture on one of those?

“Silly me. How can I forget? I’ve heard the story about a hundred times, and it never ceases to be epic.” I said, turning toward the rickety stairs that trailed up the burrow like an awkward snake. I climbed up about three flights of steps, stumbling here and there due to the strange arrangement of the steps. I was never a very coordinated person, so this just makes it about ten times worse.

Finally, I reached the room that Rose and I always slept in when we stayed at the Burrow. She took no hesitation in decorating it. The door was plastered with quidditch posters, one in particular was always so inspiring to me….the one of James’ mom, zooming in and out of the picture on the broom, her Holyhead Harpy uniform whipping along with her thick fiery red hair. She reminded me so much of Lily.

I pounded heavily on the door, pushing my whole body weight against it…causing a resonating boom throughout the whole rickety house. I think I heard the ghoul in the attic moan in protest.

“James, go away. I’m not interested in trying out your bloody breast enhancers!” Rose’s voice came from the room, sharp and irritated. She sounded exactly the same and it made the urge to hug her increase about ten times.

“Why not Rosie? Don’t you want to look like a scarlet woman?” I asked, attempting my best British accent. I honestly don’t think it’s that bad, but apparently everyone else here finds it hilarious. It never ceases to cause James, Albus, Lily, and Rose to roll on the floor laughing their asses off. You’d think that after living six years in the UK and spending most of my summers with a whole bunch of Brits would result in me becoming “Britified” or whatever, but it really hasn’t. I guess I’m just to American. I dress like an American, I could never change my accent for shit, and when I’m back with my boring mom in Little Whinging, I watch American TV…well…most of the time. I’ve grown quite fond of a British teen drama called “Skins” on E4. Yes, it’s completely trashy and all of the characters end up sleeping together once or twice…but I just love Effy! I’m sad that she was only in four seasons though.

The door swung open at once and before I could even look at Rose properly, I felt myself being enveloped in a vicar like embrace. Because I was so tiny, she managed to lift me off the floor. “Oh my God, Elaquay! I’m so glad you’re here! I don’t think I can stand living with the boys for one more moment…I tried talking to Lily, but she’s got Dom…and it’s just not the same without you…”

She was ranting and breathless…while I was getting my windpipe freaking crushed. “Rose…ROSE!!! I can’t breathe!” I yelled.

“Oh God! I’m sorry!” She shrieked and put me down. I looked at her in the face. Her pale face was splashed with freckles and her big eyes were still twinkling and blue. Her red hair was pulled back and put in a ponytail at the nape of her neck, where her long beautiful curly fiery red locks spilled down her back. She was wearing a pale pink blouse and long skinny jeans. Yes…she looked tight and clean and proper, all put together like her mom, but she also had the trademark Weasley mischief twinkle in her smile and in her eyes. Put it all together and you got one of my best friends ever…Rose Weasley.

I gave her a huge grin and yelled, “Oh my god!!! I missed you so much!!” I hugged her around the waist as hard as I could.

Once I let go, she ushered me into the room and shut the door hurriedly. The room is exactly how I remember it. A huge window facing the woods, a low wooden ceiling and walls covered in more quidditch posters, and two small beds crammed into the little space there was. I was at home.

“I hope you don’t mind, but I think I’m going to hide up here for a little while. The boys have been badgering me all day about testing out their new invention for them, since they think that I happen to be the only girl willing to do so…” She was ranting again. There she goes. It always cracks me up.

“Breast enhancers?” I asked, trying not to burst out in laughter, but I failed.

“Oh honestly, you’re just as bad as them. Normal girls wouldn’t find it absolutely hilarious…” She started, rounding on me with a pointed glare.

“Ahh, come on Rose. Have a sense of humor here!” I whined in my best impression of James I could muster, and yes…I attempted my “failure” at a British accent once again. Rose couldn’t hold her stern stature any longer, for she burst out in laughter. “Els, you honestly have no chance of being British. But I love you anyway my American friend.”

She looked at me appreciatively as I said, “You’d honestly think I’d be more European after living here for six years, attending a British wizarding boarding school, and spending time with all of you.”
I walked over to one of the vacant cots and collapsed on it, listening to the squeaky springs bend under my weight. I lay spread eagle, looking up at the ceiling, feeling a bubble of excitement boil in my stomach. For the first time this summer, I felt content…I felt like it really was a vacation. And boy do I freaking need one.

“You know, not to be a bitch or anything…but Lily could use some breast enhancers. She’s got really small boobs.” I remarked casually. Rose gave a small chuckle and I heard the squeaking of springs as she sat on her cot.

“Yeah, but she’s beautiful without them. Have you seen how many guys pine after her at school? There’s Thomas, Anders, erm….”

“Don’t forget Scorpius. He’s totally smitten with her even if he doesn’t want to admit that he’s falling on his ass for a Weasley – slash- Potter.” I said as-a-matter-of-factly. It is true. Lily is gorgeous and she has got boys falling on the ground worshipping at her feet left and right, including the smarmy git Scorpius…who despite his complete doucheness, has gotten extremely attractive in the last few years. I just hope Lily doesn’t notice that. We don’t need a Malfoy in our lives.

“How d’you know?” Rose huffed, her voice rather grumpy.

“It’s pretty obvious. He’s always staring at her and attempting to flirt with her, not that Lily will have any of it. She just thinks he’s trying to insult her, as per usual. But I see the difference between the way he treats us and the rest of your family as compared to her…well…besides Dom…but who can resist her? She’s a veela, so it doesn’t count.” I stated this all as if it were a fact. Honestly, I don’t really pay attention to details like this, but since it’s one of my best friends I’m concerned with here…especially with a git like Malfoy. I have to play older sibling and watch. James, Albus, Hugo, Teddy, and I swore that if he lays one finger on her that we’d curse him into oblivion.

“What if he’s just being a git like he always is? What if he doesn’t like her?” Rose’s voice was rising and it was starting to freak me out.

“Rose, seriously…” I started.

“Everyone’s freaking smitten with her!!! Both her and Dom literally rule the entire school. They’re both smart, pretty, and Lily is the best chaser on the Quidditch team!” She was ranting…no fuming!
I sat up to get a good look at Rose. Her red curly hair was frizzing up like her mom’s did when she was pissed, her face was turning into a blotchy red, her eyes were squinted in irritation and her fists were clenched.

She was angry…no she was jealous of her younger cousin. I could say cousins, but it’s mostly Lily.
“Rose…don’t tell me you’re jealous.” I said, my voice a bit tactless. I cursed myself.

“Me? Jealous?! Shut your damn mouth before you start making assumptions Elaquay Smithson!” She was glaring daggers at me. I knew this is when you back off. Her dad always said that having the combination of the “Granger and Weasley temper” is like setting off an atomic bomb.

“Okay, I’m sorry. Forget I said it.” I tried to talk soothingly. I watched as Rose slowly deflated until she just looked a bit defeated.

I felt for her. I mean she was a teenage girl. Need I explain more? Rose is in the top of our class. She’s so damn smart that I think she seriously has a mutated brain…and not a bad mutation either. She always knows the answer in class, freaks out about her grades like no other, and always yells at Albus and I to study when we’re guffawing like buffoons. She’s usually buried in some book, and has a knack for heading to the library at least every once every two hours. Yes, I admire her talent and logic, but I could see where others admiration for her fall short. Her hand raising and jumping up and down in her seat can get damn irritating, her long monologues and stern lectures get boring, and once or twice…she’s been called an insufferable know-it-all.
But despite all that, Rose does have this strange mischievous knack for breaking the rules. Even though she tries to denounce this part of her, she just can’t. It’s part of who she is. She sometimes assists in me and James’ plots, she finds all of the Weasley jokes hilarious even though she tries desperately to hold in her laughter, and she’s damn sharp when it comes to insulting. I recall my first day on the train and how she made Malfoy put his tail in between his legs and trample off. Not only that, Rose is very pretty. Not many people can look past the insufferable façade, but she is attractive. She’s not fat or stick skinny…but has a good healthy body and an adorable face with the most amazing blue eyes I’ve ever seen. (The only eyes that I find more amazing than hers are James’ brown ones, oh…and I have pretty awesome eyes if I may say so myself. Haha) Her hair, though is gets uncontrollable and frizzy if unattended to, is usually long and nicely curly. Better than what I can say about my hair anyways.

“It’s fine. I just lost my head a bit there.” She said. Her voice sounded a bit glum.

“It’s all good.” I responded good-naturedly.
“Anyway…” She plastered her smile back on her face. “I think it may be safe to go down there. I haven’t heard them do-“

Before she could finish, there was an earsplitting crash at the window that made both Rose and I scream like banshees. I watched as the glass flew everywhere in tiny shards. I stared open mouthed as James, Hugo, and Albus flew through the window, landing flat on the their asses.
My stomach did a back flip when I saw James’ messy dark brown hair. His skin was a bit tan…as per usual, and his sparkling chocolate eyes were twinkling. I tried not to hyperventilate but my insides were still squirming.

“Well done boys. Successful landing indeed.” James remarked. Both Hugo and Albus were laughing their heads off, as they stood up to brush themselves off. Albus looked the same, maybe a bit taller…his jet black hair sticking up in all directions, his emerald green eyes twinkling good naturedly and his glasses askew. Hugo was a carbon copy image of his dad. He was tall and lanky with big hands and feet, as well as a long nose. His messy red hair was flying everywhere and his freckled face was twisted into a half smile.

I couldn’t help it. I threw my head back and burst out laughing. They just looked so hilariously stupid and I was just so happy to see them again.
“Oh, fancy seeing you here to Els.” James said to me, his smile growing. Albus and Hugo cracked up even more at my laughing.

“Honestly you four! It’s not funny! You could’ve gotten extremely hurt!” Rose attempted to say in her stern voice, but she was unsuccessfully hiding a wide grin.

“Lay off it, sis. You’re laughing anyways.” Hugo said.

“Anyway…” James said, drawing out the word. He looked down at the two of us since he happened to be very tall. He gave a lopsided smile that made my stomach do another little jig.

Calm down Elaquay! It’s just James!

“As Rose probably already told you, we’re trying to get testers for breast enhancers…”

“Oh honestly!” fumed Rose, crossing her arms stubbornly. “You three are that desperate to crash through a window, scaring us half to death at risk of injury, to try and convince us again to try out your bloody breast enhancers.”

“Well…no. We heard that Els arrived so we wanted to see her, since the two of you were to cozy to actually come down and give us a proper greeting.” James answered, raising his eyebrows at us.
“And, secondly….My mum would murder me if I even dared ask Lily to try them, Dom, Victoire, Roxanne, Molly and Lucy are out of the question…for their own specified reasons.” James answered, staring pointedly at Rose.

“I swear, I can seriously hurt you three.” Rose snarled, drawing her wand.
“Oh, I know you can. But I don’t think you want to be expelled.” James said, drawing his wand and pointing it at the glass. It all flew back toward the window and molded itself together to be completely mended. Oh yeah…James is of age…and he has been for almost a year now. In September, he’ll be eighteen. I’m still fifteen. I won’t be sixteen until August.

“And…of course, I can never ask Elaquay. She definitely does not need them.” James said, giving me a wink. I felt my face grow hot, but I covered it with a small laugh. I think he just complimented me….oh shut up Elaquay. He always compliments you. He’s your friend! That’s just his sense of humor.

I suggested nonchalantly, “Just slip them in Sarah Corner’s drink when we get to school. I’m sure she won’t mind. She’s kind of a whore anyways.”
As the boys roared with laughter, Rose glared at me and said, “Elaquay! How can you possibly encourage…”

“I honestly won’t mind if her boobs explode or something. It would be an improvement. Maybe the boys can come up with an ass enhancer while they’re at it. The girls would be all over it.” I suggested, letting my mouth run naturally. Yup, this is who I really am. I have a guy’s sense of humor. I guess that’s why I get along so well with the boys. Don’t get me wrong, I get along with the girls too…they’re some of the best people I’ve ever met…Rose, Lily, Dom and all, and I do need my girl time as well. I do have estrogen to you know.

“That’s a really good idea, actually. Thanks Els!” Hugo remarked, the three boys still laughing.
But my attention was mostly directed at James. His laugh was addictive and it warmed my insides. It made me feel completely at home. His eye twinkled and he resonated with happiness and a troublemaking spirit.

“Well, Els. I still haven’t gotten my proper greeting.” His eyes shined and he threw out his arms. The sight of him like this made my heart skip a beat, but I disregarded it. He’s looking for a hug from his best friend of six years.

I walked over and threw my arms around him. The way he hugged me was so perfect, it made me want to snuggle with him forever. It’s surprising that I just noticed how great they were last year. I was really short, and he was tall…so he rested his chin on top of my head and his arms curled around my upper back.

“You know I really didn’t miss you, you wanker.” I remarked, showing off my trademark ludicrous British accent. I felt the vibration of James’s laugh. “Speak for yourself. Who would miss you, you ignorant tosser?” He threw back at me playfully. Yup…this is how we always talked to each other. It’s just the way it all works, and has been working since day one.

Once he released me, I ignored the cold feeling of the absence of his arms and went to hug Hugo and Albus. I withdrew and stood next to Rose, who…was staring at me strangely…a small half smile creeping on her lips. I looked at her quizzically…silently communicating with her…asking her what the hell she was staring at.
She just shook her head, still smiling and turned back to face the boys. Now, I’m not sure if I want to know what’s she’s thinking.

“Well, if you boys don’t mind…Rose and I are going downstairs to see the other lovely people inhabiting this house.” I stated, before grabbing Rose’s hand and pulling her out of the room. The boys trailed behind us, talking about the new breast enhancers and how they could slip it into Sarah Corner’s drink.
Rose and I walked down the rickety stairs…as per usual…I tripped more times that I could count and Rose kept shooting me smug looks. I wanted to ask her what she was thinking, but at the same time…I really didn’t. I heard the shouts of laughter and conversation vibrate throughout the whole house, and apparently…Mrs. Weasley Senior was still cooking ferociously due to the sounds of the hissing and steaming coming from the kitchen.
We all went into the living room to see four adults.
The first person I saw was man with messy jet black hair, round glasses, and emerald green eyes like Albus. I could even see his lightning bolt shaped scar from here. He was sitting on the couch, his wife sitting next to him…her flaming red hair pulled up in a messy bun, and her chocolate brown eyes fixed intently on the table in front of her, where a large chess board was. Rose’s dad was on the other side of the table, his face smug with ease as he said, “Queen to D6.”

We watched as the little queen moved and then knocked Ginny’s opposing figurine over. Ginny groaned and said, “I give up. You’re impossible.”
“Hello Elaquay.” Said James’ dad, Harry Potter brightly. He smiled at me and I responded. “Hey Harry.”

I learned not to call him Mr. Potter a long time ago. He and his wife Ginny prefer to be called by their first names. The same goes for Rose’s dad Ron and his wife Hermione. In fact, the whole Weasley family with the exception of Molly and Lucy’s parents likes to be called by their first name…and of course Mrs. Weasley Senior.

Ginny looked over at me and gave me a bright smile, her brown eyes twinkling exactly like James’s. I always found his mom extremely beautiful. I could definitely see why Lily is so stunning. “We’re so glad you arrived, Els. James wouldn’t stop harping about you.”

I felt a burst of joy at the news and I heard James yell, “Mum!”

I could almost feel his glower.
She shrugged nonchalantly. “It’s true. And stop glowering. You look like a troll when you do that.”
“Anyone want another go?” Rose’s dad, Ron asked…his eyes trailing over everyone…a triumphant smile on his face.

“Ronald, you’ve just about beaten everyone here. I’m sure that everyone here was done a long time ago.” His wife, Hermione, said in her stern voice that matched Rose’s exactly. Hermione Granger was seriously the smartest witch I have ever met. I don’t think I could have survived OWLs without mailing her for advice every single day.

“Hey! Don’t undermine my amazing chess skills. Don’t forget the time in first year when I…”
“Yes, Ronald. You don’t have to make us relive it. Harry and I were there and everyone else has had the pleasure of hearing the story about a thousand times.” Hermione said, her voice still sharp…but a smile breaking on her face as she looked at her husband, her eyes twinkling lovingly.

“Hello, Elaquay.” Hermione looked away from Ron and regarded me. Her bushy brown hair was pulled back into a bun at the nape of her neck so that I could actually look at her face properly.
Before I could greet her back, Ron looked at me and beamed. “Els!!! Play a game of wizard chess with me!!!”

I laughed as Hermione smacked him on the shoulder and said, “Ronald!! Honestly. I’m sure that she wants to see the others.” Ron rolled his eyes and she looked back at me. “If you want to see them, they’re all outside.”

“Thanks. And it’s nice to see you all.” I said, as Rose, James, Hugo, Albus, and I headed toward the door that led outside.

“You guys have the best parents ever.” I told the other four sincerely. I did love all of their parents. They were more of a family to me than my mom was. They were entertaining, fun, loving, and very warm.

“Yeah, but you haven’t been the victim of my mum’s wrath.” Hugo remarked.

“Or mine.” James said. “The bat bogey hex is not very enjoyable I must say. It’s going to be a nightmare when Lily becomes of age. Her and mum will team up and I think I just might throw myself out of my bedroom window.”

We reached the little wooden door and pushed it open to find ourselves on the main field. It was all green and beautiful, the sky a slightly darker blue due to the evening approaching and the buzz of crickets breaking the still warm air. Besides that, we heard more shouting and laughing. And yes…they were all there…her family.

There was Lily, sitting on the grass in a stylish lavender top and attractive shorts. Her long silky flaming red hair was pulled back into a French braid. She was sitting with Dom, who was also insanely gorgeous, her hair was wavy, and red…but had an abnormal golden glow to it. Her face was alabaster white and so beautiful that it even made me feel a bit snappy. The two both held their heads together in private conversation and were laughing and giggling.

With a violent flash, I saw the broomsticks zoom by playfully…but in speed competition. It was Fred, and his sister Roxanne, the only two half black Weasleys in the family. Two more brooms whizzed by and I saw their parents, George Weasley…the genius classic jokester of the family (who James should give more credit to than he does) and his wife, Angelina Johnson, her black hair in braids. The Two were laughing hysterically as they soared up straight into the sky and dived down, successfully doing the Wronski Feint.

A few feet from Lily and Dom were Victoire, Dom’s older sister and her boyfriend Teddy (who like me, is completely unrelated to the family, but still considered part of it)…the two were locked in a fierce embrace and were making out like no other. I felt a laugh escape my throat, but I concealed it. Those two were so hilariously perfect for each other. I honestly think that her mom, Fleur (who, by the way is another extremely beautiful French veela) is trying to drop hints to the pair that she wants a wedding soon.

Molly and Lucy were also sitting on the grass, conversing quite loudly about their OWLs to come. Molly, like her father…was all chipper and a law nazi. When she and I talked, she always had something to complain about…especially when it came to me and James’s little stunts. She was like a high-strung version of Rose. Lucy wasn’t any better. Her red hair was always pulled into this perfect sleek ponytail and she had these horn rimmed glasses that made her look like a snob. Plus, she had a book open in front of her right now. Seriously? It’s freaking summer.

Louis was also there, but he looked like he was dead asleep on the ground. His shaggy red hair was all messy and his arm was laid sloppily over his eyes. Yup…he definitely is asleep.
Lily turned and her face brightened at the sight of me. “Elaquay!!!”

She jumped up and ran towards me. She gave me a hug and said, “I’m so glad you’re here…James has been moaning and groaning…”

“Why does everyone keep saying that?!” James yelled. I turned around to look at him. His face was grumpy and extremely adorable. It made me flush, but I didn’t respond to my sudden rush of hormones.

“Well, it’s true.” She said. “And James…I’m afraid you’ll have to wait a bit longer because I think that the girls need to borrow Els for a little while.”
“But…” James started, glowering at his sister.
Lily gave a smug smile and rose an eyebrow, tapping her foot, her hands on her hips. “Yes? Do you want me to tell mum that you tried to slip your breast enhancer rubbish into my drink again?”

James shut his mouth and backed off. “Fine. C’mon, guys…let’s play Quidditch.” He, Hugo, and Albus stalked off toward the broom cupboard.

So the four of us girls all just talked…having out trademark girl time that the boys find completely insufferable. I must admit that it’s fun. I am a girl anyways. It’s fun to be just that and giggle with Dom, Lily, and Rose.

“So you sorted out that Malfoy situation, Lily?” I asked, good naturedly. I felt Rose stiffen up beside me. Crap, I shouldn’t have brought it up. But why should it bother her so much?

“I honestly don’t know what you guys are all on about. He’s a stupid arrogant toe rag who just likes to insult me because I happen to be a Weasley slash Potter. It’s all family prejudice!” She fumed, crossing her arms and raising her eyebrows half irritated-half quizzically.

“My God, Lily. You can be so daft. If Els can see it than there’s something off there.” Dom remarked. “No offense, Els, but you aren’t one to really pick up on these things.”

“Not offended. It’s completely true.” I said, shrugging.

“Anyway…Lily…the way he treats every other Gryffindor girl…including me, Els, and Rose is different from you. He’s downright nasty to us…but to you…it’s almost playful. Unless you find Malfoy extremely date-worthy…which he isn’t, disregarding his rather dashing looks…then I’d watch my back.” Dom continued, flipping her golden-red hair.

“I’m going inside.” Rose huffed, her voice irritated. She stood up and marched off sullenly.
“What’s up with her?” Lily asked, obviously confused. I stared at her, as she stalked inside, slamming the door behind her. She was either seriously PMSing, or there was something about Malfoy…but Rose can’t fancy Malfoy. That’s just out of the question. So what is it? She can’t hate her own cousin.

I shrugged, defeated. “Who knows. PMS?” I suggested.

Lily and Dom laughed.

“So…Els, since we happen to be on the subject of boys…do you happen to fancy anyone?” Lily asked, wagging her eyebrows, a sly smile creeping on her lips and the classic Weasley twinkle appearing in her brown eyes. I felt it again…the flush and the stomach turning as I thought of his smile…his laugh, his sense of humor, his ability to understand me better than anyone else…and of course looking at his own sister’s identical brown eyes didn’t help matters.

Did I mention that I’m a horrible liar?

“Um…no…of course not…” I started, knowing that I was failing miserably already.

“You are such a bad liar.” Dom remarked almost pitifully. “Just tell us. It’s a lot less painful.”

How can I tell them that I am freaking infatuated with James Potter, my best friend of six years, brother of Lily, and cousin of Dom? It just doesn’t work. I can’t tell them…though I have this creeping suspicion Rose might know…but she’s Rose. She doesn’t have much to say about it. Lily and Dom on the other hand…their mouths are just as fiery as their hair.

If I keep acting like this around James than I think they’ll figure it out. Damn it.

“C’mon…just give us a hint. Is he in your year?” Lily asked.


“Younger of older?”

“You see…” I attempted, but failed.

“Is he tall? Muscular? Skinny? Blonde? Brunette?”

They were firing these questions at me, and I cracked.

“Will you two shut your goddamn mouths!!” I fumed, silencing them.

“Since when is it your business anyways? Why does it matter? Is it essential for you to know or something? Do you need to know so that you can freaking breathe the air you breathe?”


“Will it help you grow a balloon Kardashian ass or something?” I was seething…and when I seethe…it can rival any Weasley explosion.

“Okay…okay…we’ll drop it. Sorry we brought it up.” Dom said, trying to calm me down, her face collected in a calm expression. Lily on the other hand looked red and irritated at me. We glared at each other, trying to outdo the other in mental murder.

“Honestly you two, drop it. It’s fine. Els doesn’t want anyone to know and that’s the way it is.” Dom stated, flipping her hair a bit as she said this. It suddenly irritated me just how beautiful the two girls really are.

I now really wanted to be with Rose right now. I stood up to go find her, but then Mrs. Weasley Senior’s voice shook the whole house as her amplified voice yelled,


I was racing toward the kitchen as if my ass just caught on fire.

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