The Snitch of Secrets Three

It's His Fault

The rest of the week flew by. Snape was returned to his normal age and Sirius and James had their detention with Professor McGonagall. James was amazed that although he'd been away for the summer holidays the truth was Hogwarts hadn't changed. The Slytherins were as evil as ever, History of Magic was still dull – Professor Binn's was now teaching them about witch hunts, and Lily Evans was still friends with Severus Snape much to James' disgust. Luckily their classes were more mixed this year. Only the core classes were split by houses so the Gryffindors only had to put up with the whole of the Slytherin class for four hours of potions a week. James had hated potions this week. They'd still been working on the shrinking solution from the beginning of the week. They'd written notes about its uses and its production on Tuesday, had a pop quiz about it on Thursday and had to produce it from memory on Friday. Slughorn had even given the class an essay on the potion to be handed in on Monday. Those four hours had been the worst hours of the week for James. Lily and Snape were sat directly in front of him and Sirius. He had to watch them giggle and smile as they worked together – best friends again. James sat behind them silently angry, it's his fault Holly's dead… how can she be his friend? James began to cry noiselessly. He wanted to hit the sleazebag. His hand was drawn into a punch under the desk. "James are you ok?" Remus asked.

James shook his head, wiping his eyes quickly just as Lily turned around to face him having heard what Remus had said. "Yeah, I'm fine Rem," he looked directly into Lily's eyes. Her eyes scrunched up in confusion but she turned back to face the front after a few moments. Severus leant in and whispered something in her ear, watching James. Creepy git, James thought to himself.

"Watch this," Sirius whispered. "Calvorio." He pointed his wand at Severus' head and the Slytherin's hair vanished. Soon the whole class was laughing. James tried to laugh but he was still upset about Holly.

Lily turned around in her seat, "you jerk! Why did you do that Potter? He didn't do anything to you!" She said angrily.

"I didn't do it," James replied, barely audibly.

"Whatever – of course you did!" She shouted.

"I don't care what you think of me Evans. Besides it's his fault Holly's dead!"

"No it's not," Lily replied, "he was just trying to protect me."

"Miss Evans could you please…" Professor Slughorn began.

"It is his fault – no matter how you look at it… Either way it's his fault. If I'm right and he's one of them then he arranged it with them in which case it's his fault. If you're right and he was merely protecting you then he failed didn't he? You still ended up in the tower… I still ended up nearly dying to save you… Holly still died because I didn't care if I died as long as I saved you first." James stormed out of the room leaving Lily open mouthed with shock.

James and Lily didn't speak for the rest of the week. James managed to avoid her. On Saturday morning he arranged a meeting with all the people who were hoping to join the team. It was six am. Sirius yarned unhappily, "I don't get why we have to be up so early…"

"It'll let us know who is most committed," Cynthia smiled, "thanks for this, guys. We'll be in the stands watching."

James smiled at the group of Gryffindors who had gathered on the pitch, "Anyone fancy a quick fly around and then maybe a friendly match?"

There was a general murmur of agreement. Most of them were confused but willing to go with whatever was suggested. Cynthia sat in the stand making notes on her clip board. Her and Rob watched for ages before she sighed, "We've got a problem…"

"What?" Rob asked.

"None of them are seekers," Cynthia Keeney frowned.

"Bloody hell – what will we do," Rob Calloway leant forward in the stand watching them closely. "You're right – they haven't got the eye."

"Did James not say he can play seeker?" Renee asked.

Cynthia nodded, her mind thinking away, trying to come up with a plan.

"But he's our best cha…" Rob began but quickly stopped when he realised what he was about to say.

"Best what?" Cynthia asked, "You weren't going to say chaser were you? Never mind. We'll talk to James about it later…"

That evening James and Sirius attended the Slug Club party. It was just a quiet dinner party. Slughorn had invited a few new first years as well. One of them had a famous mother whilst the rest were just pure-bloods. James was completely unimpressed. Lily however, seemed to be enjoying herself profusely. James watched her from across the table. She was sat talking to Severus. She seemed completely oblivious to all of the Slytherins staring at her. Snape on the other hand seemed completely aware. He looked at them awkwardly. Mulciber shook his head in disgust. Lily happily continued talking away about something they had done over the summer. James couldn't believe she could be so stupid. There was a knock on the door and Cynthia Keeney walked in; "Sorry Professor could I steal Potter for a second?"

"Of course Miss Keeney but don't keep him too long," Slughorn smiled.

She pulled him out into the corridor, "right we have a problem…"

"None of them are seekers," James finished for her.

"Bloody hell! If you weren't four years too young for me I'd marry you Mr I know Quidditch better than anyone else…" Cynthia replied feeling slightly flustered.

"What are we going to do captain?" James asked the seventh year girl.

"We're going to have a general try-out… No one is trying out for a specific role. They will try their hat at everything and be given the job I give them…"

"Ok. How will that help?" James asked.

"Well you see I've already got my seeker," She smiled. "Right get back in there." She practically skipped down the corridor and out of sight.

James returned back into the office where they were eating. "Everything alright Mr Potter?" Slughorn asked.

"New girlfriend Potter?" Avery asked snidely.

Sirius laughed, "you say that like it would be an embarrassment to date a seventh year in your third year… that's every boy's dream, you idiot."

"Just Quidditch sir," James replied.

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