A Secret is Meant to be Kept

When Ron lashes out at Hermione and gets them into a sticky situation, Hermione transports herself back in time. But the Marauders Era was a bit farther than she expected. She must figure out how to reverse the spell, deal with falling in love all over again and fight against some of the most notorious Death Eaters, who are inside the castle's walls. Not as intruders, but as classmates.

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20. Good Luck

It seemed as if the moment Hermione’s mood had begun improving, yet another aspect of this new life was crumbling to pieces and the weight of it was more than Hermione could hold.

“Have any of you seen Sirius?” the young witch asked as she descended the stairs that led away from Gryffindor Tower.  The group of third years simply shook their heads at her, causing Hermione further frustration.  After looking for nearly half an hour, she realized she was going to be late for Potions and began to head toward the dungeons.  Turning a corner, she heard a couple of students laughing at a young boy who was puking up slugs after having been cursed by another boy his age.  She began to chuckle to herself as she was brought back to her second year when Ron’s own curse backfired and left him puking into a bucket for hours.  As she refocused, she realized the head of thick black hair belonged to the person she had been looking for all this time, though she did not recognize the girl in the green-lined robes next to him, facing away from her line of view.

“That was great!” the girl exclaimed, laughing and falling into Sirius, who simply took her into his arms and continued to shake with laughter.

“Sirius!” Hermione yelled to him, grabbing his attention.

“‘Mione!” he bellowed, running over to her, giddy as a schoolchild.  The girl who had been with him looked seriously annoyed by the fact he had abandoned her completely for Hermione, but Sirius failed to notice.

“I’ve been looking all over for you, where have you been all this time?” she asked.

“Bailey and I had lunch together and then went to the library to get some homework done,” he began, causing a chuckle to arise from the girl beside him.  Hermione gave her a pointed look, confused at what her laugh meant, but Sirius continued without notice.  “You know Bailey, right?  She has Potions and Charms with us.”

“I live down the lane from Sirius, our families have been friends for years,” the girl, Bailey, added.  Hermione nodded and smiled, then Bailey added, “We’ve had some fun times together,” before latching onto Sirius’ arm.  This led to an awkward silence before Hermione mentioned that they all best be getting to Potions or Slughorn would have their heads.

Throughout the course of the class, Hermione would periodically glance about the room to see Bailey staring at Sirius, which would cause her to scoff every so often.  When the class had been released, Hermione went to ask Sirius if he’d like to accompany her to the library while she did some homework, but he had given her a quick kiss on the cheek before explaining he was off to Hogsmeade ‘with some friends’ and running out of sight with Bailey.

“What did I miss?” Hermione said aloud, not expecting anyone to hear her.

“He’s been doing that a lot,” James said, nodding in the direction they ran off.  “Moony, are you going to dinner?”

“Moony,” Hermione whispered, looking at the pair of them.  She had been so caught up in her own life that she failed to realize the Marauders were now aware of Remus’ monthly transformation.

“Hermione,” Remus said as James waved a hand in front of her face.

“What?” she said, coming back to the present.

Carressa and I are going to the library, would you like to come?” he asked, looking a little concerned for Hermione.

“That’s where I was headed but I think I’ll head back to the common room, I’m feeling a little tired,” she said.

“Would you like any co -” Remus began.

“No.  No, I’m fine thank you,” she said sternly.  Despite her attitude on the subject, Remus and Carressa made their way back to the common room not long after Hermione did, saying it was too crowded to focus.  Hermione was secretly grateful for their kindness and joined in as they worked.  As they did, Hermione took note of several of Carressa’s mannerisms.  She was outgoing to the point that it perfectly complemented Remus’ soft-spokenness, and she was also incredibly intelligent, making points that even Hermione was not, despite this being her second go at schooling.  

The trio quickly made their way through their Potions assignment, as well as the 8 feet of parchment they had been assigned that weekend for History of Magic.  Carressa seemed to excel at Defense Against the Dark Arts and even said she aspired to be an Auror since she was young.  As the night moved on, Hermione learned more about the pair of them, but eventually grew distant from the conversation.  She sat in an armchair by the fire and simply listened to them chat on until Carressa realized she should rest up for the Quidditch match tomorrow.  She went off to bed, but Remus had, of course, asked if Hermione would like him to stay until she fell asleep, but she politely declined, saying she would be up for a while.  

‘Sirius will put me to bed,’ she thought, which was far from the truth.  But, as time dragged on, Hermione fell asleep in the chair and drifted back to her usual nightmare.

Take me, not him, please.  Harry!  No!

“Hermione … Who’s Harry?” a voice asked, waking her from her slumber.

“What do you mean, ‘Who’s Harry’?” she retorted, dazed from the dream.

“You were going on about him.  Who is he?” the voice said again.  As Hermione’s eyes refocused, they set on the grey pair that was peering into hers.

“No one,” she said, creating an unconvincing lie.

“So Harry is no one … you’re only dreaming about him, that’s all?” Sirius said, sounding a bit annoyed by her lack of honesty.

“Yes?” Hermione said, still not fully awake.

Well, what was the dream about?” Sirius pressed.

“Nothing,” Hermione said.

“Oh, right, you’re dreaming about another guy, I’ll just drop the subject.  Typical.”

“And what’s that supposed to mean, exactly?” she said, sounding offended, but still a bit confused.  Sirius simply remained silent, realizing he had upset her.  “No, please, go on.  Or would you like to tell me about your date with Bailey instead?”

“It wasn’t a date,” he said firmly.

“But it also wasn’t ‘going out with some friends’ like you made it seem.”

“She is a friend, not that you’d know that.  You’re too busy running around with Remus.”

Hermione didn’t dignify that with a response, as she felt she didn’t have to explain herself, Remus was nothing more than a friend, at least he had been around when she needed him.

“Screw it, I’m going to bed,” Sirius said, rubbing his temples as he stood up.

“I wish I could have the luxury of that peace,” Hermione said.

“I wish I could help you, but I tried.  I made a friend while you were off doing who the hell knows what when you weren’t locked up in your room,” he said, ringing a hand around his neck.  “I’m just tired, now, okay?  It doesn’t mean I love you any less.  I’m going to bed now.”

Sirius ascended the staircase leading up to his room and never turned back.

***

“It’s only the biggest match of the year!” James said, slamming his morning toast onto his plate, clearly over-excited about the fact that Gryffindor was facing Slytherin that day.

“Right, mate, but you’ve got to calm down,” Sirius said, jittery about the match as well, trying to remain calm.  The table of Gryffindors was engaged in their usual chatter, while Hermione and Remus laughed at all of their excitement.  Unlike the boys, however, Carressa was hardly feeling nerves.  After sitting in on their practices, Hermione knew why.  Even though she was a Keeper, her skills surpassed those of many of the Chasers across all four teams at Hogwarts.  Even a Keeper as dedicated as Oliver Wood didn’t measure up to the fiery redhead.  

 

Carressa had been downing a plate of eggs when a sweet voice from behind the girls called out, “Sirius!”.  Those seated at the table turned to face the owner of it to see Bailey standing there, eyes trained on Sirius.  “Good luck today, not that you’ll need it,” she said, causing Hermione to give an eye-roll.  Hermione also failed to notice that Bailey winked at Sirius as she walked away, but she certainly did see Sirius perk up and begin eating the plate of food he had earlier pushed away.  Hermione raised an eyebrow, and Carressa noticed that Hermione’s grip on the fork she was holding had gotten much tighter.  The moment Hermione began to slam her hand down on the table, Carressa slid a hand below the fork, stopping it midair.  Hermione locked eyes with her and Carressa simply smiled.

“Wotcher, ‘Mione!” she said innocently.

‘Much better,’ Hermione thought.  Wandless magic, impressive for a fourth year.  The group decided they would head out to the pitch now and Remus and Hermione began to debate over which area of the pitch would give them the best viewing pleasure.  As they were about to reach the doors leading out of the Great Hall, another voice caused them to turn, this one calling for James.

“Good luck today … you too, Sirius … and Carressa.  You’re all going to do lovely, I know it,” the soft voice spoke.

“One pestering witch after the next,” Hermione spat, shaking her head, pushing the boys to continue out of the hall, leaving Lily standing in their tracks, once again on the verge of tears.

   

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