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chapter thirty-seven; A Pessimist's View
You look good, Potter. "

  MADELINE HAD BEEN looking forward to her final school supply shopping trip for a while

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  MADELINE HAD BEEN looking forward to her final school supply shopping trip for a while. But the day it approached, she was a melting pot of melancholy happiness. It was the first she'd be able to spend with people that meant the most to her— as she'd just found them the year prior. But it was leading up to her final year.

  Over the summer of 1977, Madeline had delved into not only independence but reality. The newspaper headlines no longer shocked her, a leaning tower of printed papers stood beside her desk. James frowned every time he saw his little sister hunched over a new issue, but he never chose to comment.

  It had been that way for weeks now. James remaining silent, holding his tongue. Madeline had had free reign of her life, which wasn't as dangerous as he thought.

  Reading papers, spending days with Lily Merlin knows where before collapsing into her bed at night. It felt like James was finally seeing the girl he'd hidden all those years, the one who would help her mother in the kitchen and her father in the garden, how Madeline focused sole attention when someone important was talking— important being relative to her.

  And the color drain her face when they were in Diagon Alley.

  It seemed paying attention had finally paid off that faithful day when James' hand was interlaced with Lily's as they strolled beside Madeline and the black brothers. They'd each been to Gringotts, the seventh year shopping list in Lily's jean pocket, sixth in Regulus' hand. And right as they entered Flourish and Botts, Madeline stopped hard.

  James noticed before anyone else, his halting pulled Lily to a still as well, and soon enough everyone knew the reasoning.

  "Can we come back later?" Madeline asked quietly, already backtracking to the store-front.

  "Oh, Maddie," Lilly tutted, slipping her hand from James', "Come on, you'll never see him again, this is your shot."

  "Her shot at what?" Sirius questioned instantly.

  "At showing Keeler what he missed out on," Lily said with a bit of fire, making Sirius recoil and wish to retract his statement.

  Because Nico was standing in an aisle. His blonde hair still long and gravity-defying, though one single strand had fallen down into his eyes. In his hands, he held a book whose title was covered, eyes focused on the pages inside.

  "Come on," Lily urged gently, linking an arm with Madeline's, "You're a badass."

  "Yeah, right, a total badass," Madeline nodded, murmuring more to herself. "Can we just, get what we need to and go?"

  "Sure," James jumped before Lily could respond, "Whatever you need, Maddie."

  So they did.

𝐀𝐍𝐎𝐁𝐑𝐀𝐈𝐍, sirius blackWhere stories live. Discover now