The holidays passed without much fuss or particular fanfare: James managed to carry out his prank (it involved several jars of frogspawn and some very unsuspecting First Years) resulting in him getting three severe telling-offs (one from Professor McGonagall and two from Lily) plus a week’s worth of detentions; Adie and Remus bumped into each other one afternoon and spent a very pleasant hour discussing a book they had both picked up on the goblin wars and Adie managed to spend very little time in the Slytherin Common Room and an almost excessive amount of time by the lake with Lily and Emmeline, which suited her greatly.
Sirius seemed to have accepted the fact that Remus and Adrianna were friends although when Remus mentioned having spoken to her, Sirius did appear to mutter “Just you wait, Lupes”. James would shake his head wisely whenever Sirius warned Remus against the friendship. Peter just appeared to find the whole situation very uncomfortable.
The first lesson after their break was Gryffindor/Slytherin Transfiguration, period one on Monday. Remus was careful to make sure he had packed the essay he and Adie had worked on before he set off to breakfast; McGonagall would flip if anyone had dared to defy her request and had failed to complete their work.
“How dare you defy the direct request of a professor and fail to complete your holiday work?” Her voice was dangerously calm as she spoke the words but her nostrils flared, giving her true rage away. Even Sirius dared not make an amusing quip or invent some ridiculous excuse for his lack of essay.
Almost half the class had failed to turn the assignment in and Minevra was not happy.
“Perhaps you’ll find it easier to work away from the distractions of your friends? Get out of your seats - I’ll decide where you’ll be seated for the rest of the year.”
The heavy wooden desks of McGonagall’s classroom seated two and she got her revenge on the lazy class by pairing them Gryffindor student with Slytherin. The class had naturally divided with the Snakes on one side and the Lions on the other.
There was a moment of considerable tension in the class as McGonagall picked Adrianna out of the crowd; Remus and Lily had both been paired off already. Adie groaned as her teacher went beckoned towards Sirius Black.
I give us one week before both or either of us is in the Hospital Wing, she thought ominously.
However, as Sirius stepped forwards with a grim scowl on his face, Professor McGonagall stopped him.
“Not you, Black,” She said curtly. “Mr Potter, you and Miss Greengrass will be sitting right there, if you please.”
She indicated a desk in the centre of the room and the two teens seated themselves rather reluctantly. Lily shot her best friend a very sympathetic look.
Adie shifted uncomfortably in her new seat as McGonagall finally began the lesson, talking about Vanishing spells. Adie knew they were supposed to be complex and she really was trying to pay attention and takes notes but it was rather hard with James’s angry glare practically boring a hole in the side of her head.
Oh, screw it, I’ll just copy Remus’s notes, she thought as she turned to face the disgruntled, messy haired boy.
“What’s up, Potter?” she hissed, automatically feeling her levels of Slytherin rise.
James held Adie’s gaze although her usually smiling blue eyes had turned quite icy and threatening. “Nothing, you know, just loving sitting next to the crazy girl that hates my best friend and almost knocked him off his broom a few months ago.”
Adie rolled her eyes; sarcasm really didn’t suit James Potter. “Well it just shows how much you know, Potter. You got that entirely backwards. For starters, it’s your mate Black who has the irrational hatred of me and it was him who hit a Bludger at me after the match had ended.”
There was a moment of silence after Adrianna said this as both students quickly glanced to the front of the room to ensure McGonagall had not noticed their whispered conversation. Adie could not resist adding a childish but truthful statement, “He started it!”
James bit back a smile at this comment, looking at Adrianna slightly differently. She certainly didn’t look like the others with her honey hair pushed back of her face with a blue headband, she looked almost… sweet. Especially with the way she was pouting childishly at the thought of Sirius and his unfair antics.
James almost shuddered as he realised he’d just been thinking about Greengrass in an almost sympathetic manner. Sirius was right; just because she didn’t look like your typical elitist witch, just because she didn’t always act like one, it didn’t mean that she wouldn’t end up like all the rest of them.
It would be the people like Lily and Remus who’d allowed themselves to believe she was different that would get hurt and betrayed.
James knew all this because of how close he and Sirius were; he was the only one who was allowed even the smallest of glimpses into Sirius’s very private family life. His best friend had been hurt so many times by his family. He’d convinced himself that they weren’t as bad as the others, that they cared and that they wouldn’t do the same awful things. But they always did.
Sirius had been so close to Bellatrix when he was young; he couldn’t ever explain to his friend how it felt to see her years later performing the Cruciatus curse on an innocent, harmless Muggle but James could sense the pain in his voice whenever he spoke about his formative years with the older girl.
And that was why James stopped thinking about Adrianna as anything like ‘innocent’ or ‘sweet’.
“Seriously, Adrianna,” James began speaking wearily. Adie looked at him cautiously, wary of this new tone of voice he had adopted. “You are just like them. I don’t know why you can’t understand it and accept it. It’d just be easier for everyone, seriously. God, I never had you down as so stupid, Greengrass.”
He turned back to the front of the classroom and started to take notes in earnest; he resolved in that moment not to try and gauge her reaction to his little speech.
In fact, her reaction was utter shock. Although she had heard similar many times before from her sister, parents, Cissy, Reg, Lucius and so many others, this time it resonated with her far more deeply. To hear such a judgement from someone who barely knew her and someone that she had always thought seemed like a nice and good person had unsettled Adie.
Neither one of the pair realised that Lily had been quietly observing the tiff and as Adrianna sped out of the classroom the second the lesson ended, the redhead sidled up to James.
He looked surprised to see Lily approach him; he couldn’t remember a single time that she’d ever started a conversation with him. As she got closer, however, he recognised a certain steely glint in her eye – she was preparing for verbal combat.
“Potter, don’t you dare ever speak to any of my friends like that ever again. I understand that you’re taking Black’s side in this dispute he and Adie have going but there’s no need to say awful things like that,” Lily had spoken calmly and quietly, without pausing for breath. She looked James straight in the eye before continuing.
“You do not know her, you cannot judge her, and she is not like them. If she ends up marrying a Muggle-born hating elitist then I will not be hurt, it’s not her decision! You just know nothing, James! Does it really mean nothing to you that both Remus and I adore her? You’re an imbecile, Potter. Just don’t try speaking to either of us again.”
Lily’s quiet and calm phase had not lasted long and by the end of her tirade her screeching was almost on a par with that of a banshee. She stalked away from James in a rage to catch up with the subject of their rather one-sided argument.
James just stood there; so he would just ignore Greengrass from now on. Although, he thought wryly, the fact that she was another reason why he was in Lily’s bad books definitely didn’t score her any brownie points…