Becoming Someone Else, Somewhere Else

Chapter 8

The rest of the week was uneventful at best. Between classes and quidditch practice, Sirius and I spent most of our time together studying, either in the library or next to the fire in the common room. Since I arrived right in the middle of term, I had a lot of catching up to do, including having to write essays, research papers, and I even had to come up with a prediction for Divination class. For my prediction, I decided to break away from the normal 'I see grave danger in your future' and I harped on my inner fortune cookie. "Your true love will show himself to you underneath the starlight" was the best I could come up with. When Friday came, and our last class was over, Sirius caught up with me and kissed me on the cheek.

"It's a Friday night, Miss Horsefeather," he said, as if he were on a cheesy game show. "Any hot dates tonight?" He had a hopeful look in his eye. I looked at him from the corner of my eye and saw him with a look on his face like a puppy sick with love.

"Oh, I don't know," I said casually. "It depends. What are you doing tonight?" I grabbed his hand and swung my arm enthusiastically.

"I guess I've got a date with you!" he said sounding a little bit too excited. "What did you have in mind?" He questioned, giving me the authority to pick the setting for our rendezvous. "We could go to Hogsmeade. I know a secret passage!" I gave him an amused look.

"Of course you know a secret passage, Sirius. But I have something else in mind." I gave him a wink that made his face turn pink. I stroked his hand with my thumb as we approached the portrait hole. "Fig Pie," I said quickly, but the portrait did not budge. "Fig Pie!" I said, even loudly, as if being more obnoxious would make it open easier.

"The password has changed, you silly girl! No need to shout!" The Fat Lady said, quite perturbed. I threw my hands up in exasperation as I felt my books getting heavier by the second.

"Well now I guess we wait until someone comes by with the password, or somebody lets us in." I said, sitting down on the floor in front of the portrait.

"You could always try guessing!" The Fat Lady piped up. "It's ruddy fun for me!" I rolled my eyes and Sirius started laughing.

"It's worth a shot!" he said, humoring the Fat Lady. "Argle-Bargle! Cockamamie! Whistling Kitty Chaser! Kerfuffle!" The Fat Lady was absolutely dying of laughter as Sirius rattled off the most ridiculous words he could think of. Gryffindor tower did, however, have the reputation of having the most outlandish passwords of any of the houses. I started to giggle as he looked at me and picked me up, helping me to stand. "You try some, Mar. We're bound to hit it eventually!"

"Namby-Pamby! Gobbledygook! Flibbertigibbet!" I could barely control myself from so much laughter. The Fat Lady was holding onto her sides, carrying on as if somebody had been tickling her with a feather duster. As soon as we nearly could not take it anymore, the portrait hole swung open, and James popped his head out to investigate.

"What's going on out here?" He questioned, eyeing Sirius and me as I wiped a tear from my eye and he straightened out his robes.

"Thank goodness, James," Sirius said, pushing his way past him into the common room. "We forgot the password." James looked us over as I was still trying to wipe away tears from laughing so hard.

"The password is collywobbles," he said shortly, obviously irritated that we were having such a good time over a trivial occurrence.

"I was just about to say that one!" I said as Sirius turned and smirked at me. "I promise!" As we both headed toward the stairs to the dormitories I pointed a finger at Sirius. "Meet me in ten minutes and we'll go get dinner, and then," I said, purposely leaving my statement hanging. I left him with a wink to go change out of my robes.

We ate dinner in a hurry, both of us eager to get on with our Friday night engagement. I could tell Sirius was excited and apprehensive for our evening together. "So you never told me what we are doing tonight," he said in a hushed tone as he finished off the last bite of his plate. James, Remus, and Peter were far off in their own conversation to notice us whispering.

"It's a secret!" I said, pressing my finger against my lips. Sirius's eyes lit up as if he'd just had a tremendous thought.

"Are you taking me to that room?" he said, a little louder than he probably should have. I shushed him and looked away, not wanting to give anything away too soon. Sirius jumped up from the table and took my hand in his.

"Well boys," he said, saluting to his friends, "we best be off. We've got a long night of essays ahead of us!" he dragged me out of the Great Hall before I could even give them a small wave goodbye. We ran up to the seventh floor, barely having time to catch our breaths and I stopped in front of the tapestry of the trolls in tutus. I looked behind me and discovered there was no door. "Is this where it is?" Sirius said, looking puzzled. I nodded and closed my eyes. I had not known exactly how I had gotten it to work the first time, but I had faith I could do it again. 'I need someplace where Sirius and I can be alone together. Something romantic and beautiful. Really impress me.' I kept my eyes shut tight until I heard the sound like vines crawling up a wall that told me that a door was conjuring itself. I heard Sirius gasp a little. I opened my eyes and saw a door that was much larger than it was the first time I had seen it. It was covered in intricate metal designs swirling along the grain of the wood, and the handle was giant and ornate, resembling a work of art. Sirius's mouth hung open as I reached for the handle to open the door.

As I pushed to door forward, I noticed the room was darker than it was the time before when I had entered. I walked in and felt soft earth beneath my feet. The floor was covered in dark green grass, and a short path was lined with tea candles. My mouth fell open as we both stepped in and closed the door behind us. The ceiling was bewitched to look like the night sky, but was much blacker, and the stars were even clearer to see than they were by night. I took Sirius's hand and led him down the candlelit path, where a large blanket was laid down with an array of pillows at its top. There was also a small gazebo in the background with disembodied sounds of violins radiating from it. At first, I thought it might have been too much, but judging by the bewilderment in Sirius's face, it was absolutely perfect.

"Shall we?" I said, holding out my hand as I sat down on the blanket and gazed up toward the stars. Sirius followed and sat down beside me, speechless. I scooted closer to him as we laid back to rest on the pillows and get a better view of the star-laden ceiling. I closed my eyes as I let the sound of the violins allow me to drift away.

"This is amazing," Sirius finally spoke, astonishment in his voice. I just hummed in agreement, feeling completely at peace.

I opened my eyes and gazed up again. "Tell me about the stars, Sirius," I said softly, knowing that we had both had the same astronomy classes. I thought maybe he would be able to tell me something new. Something dreamy. He slipped his arm underneath my neck, allowing me to rest my head on his chest. He pointed up.

"Do you see Orion's belt?" he said, motioning with his hand as he pointed out three stars. I nodded. He then moved his gesture toward the left. "See that really bright star? It's the brightest star in the night sky," he said, sounding satisfied with his knowledge.

"Is that the north star?" I questioned, noticing that we were not looking at the Big Dipper. He shook his head.

"That star is a part of the constellation Canis Major, Orion's hunting companion." I did not know why I had not known this already. It seemed like something I would have learned first year, but I did not dwell on it.

"What's it called?" I asked, trying to make out the shape of a dog among the glittering stars.

"Sirius," he said with a smile. I looked up at him, doe-eyed. I longed to be so much closer to him, though our bodies were already pressed against each other. He placed his fingers under my chin and lifted my face even with his. I could feel his breath linger on my skin as I breathed in his scent. He smelled like sandalwood and evergreen, faintly like a love potion. Butterflies fluttered inside me when I felt him lean into me and press his smile against my lips, as his hand traveled up to touch my face. I leaned into him and returned his kiss, running my fingertips up his arm, shooting chills through his body. I felt like electricity was surging between us as we kissed, the violins still playing in the background. I felt like we were no longer in the Room of Requirement, or even still at Hogwarts. I felt like we had traveled to a place far beyond the walls of the castle where no one could interrupt us, like we were settled on a cloud that was all our own and we floated high above the earth, warm inside each other's embrace.

When our lips finally separated, I gave a sigh of content. I had not wanted it to end. His gaze captured mine as I studied his face. The stars flickered in his eyes and they glowed a deep brown, full of passion and life. "Such beauty," he whispered, kissing me again delicately. I had never felt so complete in my life as I adjusted myself onto his chest where I was before. He stroked my hair as we continued to look up at the ceiling full of twinkling orbs.

"Can we name a star after me?" I said softly. Sirius kissed my head as a new, small light flickered beside the brightest star in the sky.

"How about that one?" he said, pointing to the light that had just blinked beside his. "I don't think that one has a name yet." I watched as it glowed brightly.

"I think that's a perfect one," I said closing my eyes and smiling as I breathed in his scent again. It was as if each second I laid beside him was a second I fell deeper and deeper under his spell. I heard his gasp as he pointed up in excitement. There were streaks of light flashing across the blackness of the ceiling. "Shooting stars," I said in wonder, watching as they flew across the darkness.

"Don't forget to make a wish," Sirius said, tightening his arm around me and pulling me even closer to him. He closed his eyes and bit his lip as if he were wishing the biggest wish he could come up with.

"What are you wishing for?" I asked with curiosity.

"It won't come true if I tell you," He said with a chuckle. "What about you?" I didn't say anything. I had no idea what to possibly wish for. I had everything I had ever wanted in this room with me. I was genuinely happy as I thought about my prediction for Divination. 'Your true love will show himself to you underneath the starlight.

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