Chapter 14

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We got back from Hogsmeade late that night. It was around dinner and everyone was in the Great Hall. I spent the whole day with Neville, and we got to know a lot about each other.

We entered the Great Hall together and I saw Harry, Ron, and Hermione sitting at the end. A seat was saved next to Harry, but Ron stared me down as I walked in.

"Stay away from Harry." Ron mouthed. I nodded, then Harry looked over at me.

"Rhea." He said once I got close enough. "I saved a seat for you."

"You don't want her sitting next to you." Ron said. "She's a back stabber."

"I highly doubt that." Harry said. "Sit down."

"Harry, I need to tell you something." Ron said. I shook my head, then turned to Neville. "Let's go sit down."

Harry looked at Ron confused, then said. "Rhea, wait." He jumped up from the bench and stopped me by grabbing my shoulder.

"It's obvious Ron doesn't want me here. I'll just go sit somewhere else." I said. I brushed Harry's hand off my shoulder and walked off.

Neville led me to the opposite end of the table. He sat down and I sat next to him. Two boys were sitting across from us, then one of them said. "Hey Neville." He had an Irish or Scottish accent. I can never tell the difference between the two.

"Hey guys. This is Rhea Lupin. She's going to be sitting with us for a while."

"Hey Rhea." The other boy said. "I'm Dean."

"And I'm Seamus." The boy sitting next to him said, holding out his hand. I shook it from across the table looked back at Harry, Ron, and Hermione.

Harry was looking down at us, a confused look on his face. Ron started talking to him, and Harry looked less confused. He then shot a look of sadness down towards me. He stood up and I looked away. I heard footsteps coming towards me, and I kept my eyes fixed on my food.

I felt someone tap on my shoulder. I turned around, already knowing who it was.

Harry stood behind me, face red, eyes glassy. "Can I talk to you?" He said. I nodded, then looked back at the others. "I'll see you in a minute." I said quietly. They all three nodded and I stood up.

We walked out of the Great Hall and walked to an empty corridor. Harry stopped me after a while of walking.

"You know Rhea, if you didn't want to go out with me, you could have just said so." He said angrily.

"I wanted to spare your feelings. I could tell you really liked me." I said. Harry was about to say something, but I cut him off. "And I did not read your mind to find out. You are very affectionate."

"I just don't get why you would say yes if you don't like me that way." Harry said, sitting down in a window sill. I sat next to him and put my arm around him.

"Look, I'm really sorry." I said. "I only said yes to keep you as a friend. I thought that if I said no, then you wouldn't be my friend."

"It would have taken a while, but I would still be your friend." Harry said, looking at me. "It's like this. It's going to take a while. And until then, maybe we just shouldn't be around each other." Harry stood up and walked off. I shook my head in disbelief. I started crying and didn't know what to do.

I heard footsteps coming my way. I opened my eyes and looked in the direction of the steps. Fred was coming towards me. He sat down next to me on the window sill and put his arm around me.

"What happened this time." Fred said.

"Harry found out that I don't like him like he likes me, and now he said it's best if we have some space for a while." I said. I rested my head on Fred's shoulder.

"I'm sorry Iris." Fred said quietly. "It'll be alright."

We sat in silence for a moment, then I realized something. "Hey Fred." I said, looking up at him.

"Yes?" He said, looking down at me.

"How do you always know where I am?" I asked.

"I have my ways." Fred said.

"You do know I can read your mind and find out, right?" I said, sitting up.

"Oh, right. I forgot. Well, you won't find anything up here." Fred said, then tapping his head. I laughed quietly and looked into his beautiful, brown eyes. I shook the thought from my head and looked again. I saw everything about me in his head. He thought about me quite a lot. He wanted to protect me ever since first year. I didn't care for that now, only how he found me.

Then I saw it. The Marauders Map. I broke our eye contact and looked at Fred.

"I know how you keep finding me." I said, a grin breaking out on my face.

"Ok fine, prove it." Fred said, getting cocky.

"There's a map you use. It's called the Marauders Map. It shows every person in the castle, there every move, all the time. You use it to find me. And you have it on your person now." I said. Fred nodded approvingly and pulled a piece of parchment from his pocket. He drew his wand, then I quickly drew mine.

"I also know how to open it." I said. Fred handed the parchment to me and said. "Go on, open the map."

I tapped my wand on the page and said. "I solemnly swear that I am up to no good."

Ink flooded the parchment and spelled out, Messers Moony, Wormtail, Padfoot, and Prongs, proudly present the Marauders Map.

Fred looked at me with amazement. "I told you." I said. A large smile broke out on my face.

"This is amazing." I said. Fred smiled, then said. "Open it."

I opened up the map. It showed everyone in the castle. I looked at Harry's name. He was in the Common Room. His name was moving back and forth around the room.

"Is that..." I started. "Harry? Yeah." Fred said.

"And he's..." I started again. "Pacing? Yes." Fred again finished. "So, how did Harry find out about, well, that you don't like him like that."

"Well, we were walking up to Hogsmeade, and I said I was relieved that I wasn't going on a date my first trip to Hogsmeade. The Hermione said the strangest thing."

"And it was?"

"She said she saw us out on the Quidditch pitch. She says that I like you, and that you like me."

"That's crazy!"

"I know." I said. "We're just really good friends, that just met a couple months ago."

"Well, let's get off the topic." Fred said, quickly changing the topic. "What else happened?"

"Well, then Ron became very protective of Harry, telling me off because he really liked me, then he led Hermione off and he told Harry."

"Ron'll be hearing a mouthful later I swear. Hurting one of my closest friends. I'll tell him off for you." Fred said, sitting up.

"I can talk to him Fred." I said, putting my hand on his shoulder.

"Are you sure? I'll do it. Rough him up a bit." Fred said, suddenly becoming very serious.

"Oh no, that's not necessary." I said.

"Alright, now, to change the subject, do you know how to close the map?"

"Yes I do." I said, becoming cocky. I tapped my wand on the now closed map. "Mischief managed."

All the ink went to the tip of my wand and disappeared. I smiled and looked at Fred, who still had his arm around me.

"So, let's go back to the Great Hall." I said, standing up.

"Alright." Fred said. "Oh, and don't tell anyone about the map. I..."

"Stole it from Filch in your first year." I finished. He smiled his cute smile and I smiled back. I hugged Fred tightly and smiled. We let go and I kissed him on the cheek. I smiled and walked off, leaving Fred standing there without another word.

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