Once James returned, he was introduced to Carter, a new recruit. He was the son of Damian and Gabby Dreadnought (A.N. Minor OC's), also spies in the Ministry. Carter was tasked with joining James during his time at Hogwarts. Naturally James wasn't to happy about getting a "partner", and Carters "thumb up his ass" attitude didn't help, but overall decided to deal with it.
During the wait James had started to up his training style. He devised new training fields and methods. He also learned to cast spells without speaking. Although he did get the occasional letter from Tonks, which kept him sane from Carter's attitude. Unfortunately Carter took it upon himself to read one of Tonk's letters to James. Interested, he put the letter back, but decided to meet this person when they went to Hogwarts.
Carter took his time in preparing, brushing up on the Imperious Curse. If he saw this girl as adequate, then he'd try to woo her. But the only problem was James.
After a long wait, the time had come to return to Hogwarts once more. James and Carter loaded their things onto the train with Draco, while Tonks loaded her tings with the Golden Trio. Things seemed to be going well, until the train suddenly lurched forward and stopped. A cold chill fell upon the train as all water began freezing up.
"What the hell is going on?" Carter says
"Silent" James quietly says
Carter went quiet.
Soon a cloaked figure hovered by the door and opened it. It was a Dementor. The Dementor quickly looked around the small room before leaving. After a few tense seconds, James slowly closed the door with a quiet click.
"That was scary" Crabbe says
"Yeah..." Carter responds
Soon the train was moving again, and they found themselves back at Hogwarts. Like usual everyone was led to the Great Hall where they all devoured the feast that awaited them. During the feast, James and Tonks had met up and sat next to each other while Carter joined the Slytherin table.
Once the festivities started settling, the school's choir sang a small number. Dumbledore made the announcement of Professor Lupin's position as Defense Against The Dark Arts teacher, Hagrid being the new Care Of Magical Creatures teacher, and the Dementors that would be stationed at Hogwarts. After the warning, and encouraging words, the feast officially ended and each "House" went to their respective Common Rooms.
Deciding to try something new, James and Tonks went to bed with everyone else, but waited for everyone to fall asleep, which took a while due to the fact that the guys stayed up and had a . During the night James and Tonks went to the couch, with the fire's embers still lingering. From there they situated themselves on the couch in their usual position.
James wrapped his arm around Tonk's waist as she leaned her head against his shoulder.
"I missed you" Tonks whispers
"Me too" James responds
After a few seconds Tonks asks, "What are you thinking about?"
"I'm trying to think of a nickname for you, how about Nym?" James says
"Sure" Nym says, "A lot of people use it so that's fine"
Both then fall into a gentle slumber, resting up for the next day.
In the morning Harry and Ron had divination while James and Tonks had Potions. It seemed that James had become Snape's "Go to man", and had him answer any questions that the others found to difficult.
"So if you pour the liquid into the caldron, it should turn Red" James explains
He had just finished explaining how to finish a Potion, and let the other student take it from there. Continuing with his own Potion, James gathered the necessary items and got to work. Looking through a Level 5 Potions book, James started brewing the ingredients into his caldron.
After class ended, James and Tonks went to meet up with The Golden Trio to go to Hagrid's class. Getting there, Hagrid had everyone follow him into the woods and wait for him. He had them open their books, but Neville's didn't seem to like him.
After a small confrontation between Draco and Harry, Hagrid came back with an animal.
"Meet Buckbeak" Hagrid introduces
"Isn't that a Hippogriff?" Tonks asks
"That's correct Tonks" Hagrid says "They are very proud creatures, and it's not wise to try messing with them. Now, who'd like to go first"
Everyone took a step back, while Neville jumped down, leaving Harry to just stand there.
"Well done Harry, well done" Hagrid says
After a few tense minutes, Harry was able to pet Buckbeak. Hagrid then lifted him on it's back and it took off. After waiting some more, Harry descended and dismounted from Buckbeak.
Draco decides to do something stupid and approached Buckbeak.
"Oh no..." James says as he run at Draco
'You're not so tough are you, you great winged Chicken" Draco taunts
Buckbeak then tries to attack Draco, but James quickly tackles him to the ground and is clawed in the back. Hagrid then calms down Buckbeak a bit and tosses a dead ferret away from them.
"Ah...dammit, hurts" James says
He had a long slash mark across his back. It was a small cut and not too deep, but it was long.
"James!" Tonks yells as she rushes to him
"I'm ok, I'm ok" James soothes
"No your not, look at the length of that cut!?" Tonks yells
"James...I'm sorry" Draco says
"It's not your fault man, it's fine, injuries are only temporary" James says
"Hagrid, he needs to be taken to Madame Pomfrey" Hermione says
Hagrid then lifts James up and dismisses the class. Tonks trailed behind as James was brought to the Infirmary. Getting there he was placed on a cot face down while Tonks sat in a chair next to him. James had a spell cast that would help heal the cut, and was then bandaged. Since the cut took up a large portion of his back, James had to be fully wrapped in bandages.
After that he was able to leave and head to the Great Hall for dinner. Getting there, James sat with Tonks and the others as usual, but was surrounded by a couple of Gryffindors that had the class with them. They started questioning him about how the cut was, and for the majority of the guys, if he though that there was going to be a scar. He then learned that Sirius Black had been sighted in a nearby town.
Soon everyone dispersed again left him alone.
"Jeez, never knew everyone could be like that" James says as he bites a piece of bread
"Well, you did take a hit for Draco Malfoy, so it's going to bring some attention" Tonks says
Soon everyone was dismissed yet again to go to their Common Rooms. Draco caught James before he went to far away and thanked him for stepping in. James merely said, "What are friends for?", before walking off to his Common Room.
Things were pretty straight forward after getting to the Common Room. Stay in your Common Rom once curfew sets in was basically the only real rule. Once everyone went to bed, James and Tonks met up in their usual spot. Tonks had James fully lie down before laying down herself.
Letting James wrap her arm around her, Tonks turned herself so that se was facing him.
"Please don't do something like that again" Tonks says, "You made me worry, and I don't like worrying"
"Don't worry, OK? I always survive somehow" James says
"What if you don't!" Tonks nearly yells, "I couldn't stand the thought of loosing you"
James then pulls Tonks closer as she starts to tear up.
"Ssshhh" James whispers, "It's OK. I'm here"
Soon Tonks fell asleep with her head under James' chin, and James eventually tired as well. Only he did wonder, when was his luck going to run out? Hopefully after Voldemort has either won or been defeated. He would never say this in front of other Death Eaters, but he personally hoped that Voldemort would lose. He didn't want anyone to go through what he had to.
Letting the sweet contentment of sleep finally consume him, James sought comfort in his dreams...and Tonks.
Carter had decided to keep at a distance and watch James. Now doesn't that sound nice and stalkish. During his observations he had also noticed Tonks. James must be thick if he hadn't tried to claim her. Tonks had matured ever since the first yer, both mentally and physically. Deciding that James didn't deserve someone like her, Carter decided to claim her for himself.
Tomorrow when they were separated, he would take her, and make her his.