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Sirius's Secret Girlfriend (isn't a girl)

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Before he knew it, there were three days until the bet expired, and he would lose to Sirius. James doesn’t understand how he’d let so much time pass, but it did and now, he was screwed. He was no closer to the answer than he was the first day. He had tried to remember the conversation with Lily, but unfortunately, he could only remember Remus’s name being said a lot, and Lily being exasperated. Before he knew it, he was on his way to the Gryffindor common room to try and catch the ginger-headed girl. Luckily enough, she was there, sitting with Mary and Marlene, watching the two play wizard’s chess.

“Lily Evans, the love of my life and the prettiest flower I know,” He declared, walking over to where the girls were sitting near the fire.

“What do you want, Potter?” Lily said, looking down as she was unable to hide the smile appearing on her face.

“I’m doomed.” He sat down on the floor with a pout. “I only have three days until I’ve lost. Three days! How did I let that happen?” He threw his hands up in the air and laid down on his back.

“I don’t know, but I don’t believe it’s my problem.” She turned back to her friends, watching the game, only to get interrupted by James once again.

“Well. I was hoping you’d help me again- yes, I know it didn’t work last time but I’ll try harder!” If this had happened two years ago, Lily would’ve rolled her eyes and told him to bugger off, but recently she’d been finding it near impossible to deny him.

The redhead sighed and turned her body to face the boy in front of her. “Okay. To start, your list is stupid.” This earned her a frown, and since he didn’t start talking, she continued. “I mean that it won’t help you, so I suggest you scrap it.”

“Got it.” Much to Lily’s surprise, he took the said paper out of his pocket before ripping it in half.

She tilted her head to the side before glancing at the paper. “Have you just been carrying that around for the past month?” He nodded and asked her to continue talking. “I know you’ve heard this time and time again, but it's much more obvious than you’d think.”

“Can you elaborate, maybe?” he grunted, “I understand I'm a bit oblivious, but if it was right in front of me, I’m sure I’d see it!”

“I’m not so sure.” She shook her head, biting her tongue to hold down a smile.

The two sat in silence for a moment before James lifted his head to meet her eyes. She realised that his eyes were filled with despair, and her's immediately softened as well. “Is everything okay, James?” Somewhere in the back of her mind, a voice was reprimanding her for the use of his first name, but she realised she didn’t care for that voice anymore.

“It’s just,” He paused for a second and pursed his lips, “I don’t understand why he told you and not me, I’m a little hurt is all.” He met her eyes for the second time in their conversation and she could see sorrow displayed across his face.

She reached out and put a soothing hand on his arm, much to James's astonishment. “It’s okay to feel like that, he's your best friend. But it wasn’t just Sirius deciding on who to tell.”

“Oh,” His eyebrows furrowed, “Yeah, I guess I hadn’t thought about that.”

“There were just so many factors involved, James. It would’ve been difficult for the both of them to tell anyone other than me.” This was true. Lily was the first person who Remus came out to, with Sirius being the second. He had told her one night during third year when she found him snogging a fourth-year Hufflepuff boy in the astronomy tower. She was also the second person Sirius came out to, with his first being Remus. The two of them had confided their secret relationship with her, as they weren’t ready to see how everyone else would react.

He nodded and smiled softly. “Thanks, Lily.” Despite having gained no new knowledge, he was satisfied to know that there was a reason his brother hadn’t trusted him with this important information. He got up at walked over to the stairs, passing Remus sitting on the couch reading a book.

After he made it up the stairs, Lily Evans turned to watch the end of the chess match that was still going on, when she felt a hand on her shoulder. Spinning her head around, she was met with a smug-looking Remus Lupin.

“I see you’ve abandoned your couch.” She said, knowing what was to come.

“I see you’ve abandoned ‘Potter’. What’s up with calling him James?” He laughed with a bright smile, “And the arm-touching? Are you sure you're Lily Evans?” He reached the back of his hand and pressed it against her forehead, only to get it smacked away.

“Oh, shove it, Remus.” She stated, despite the small smile that appeared on her face.

“On a more serious note-”

“Isn’t everything on a Sirius note for you?”

“Fuck off. I was going to say that it’s okay to like him, Lils.” Remus watched as a frown appeared on her face.

“But what about my ego?”

“It could take a hit or two.”

“Remus!” She smacked his arm, as he continued with his statement.

“Lily, you’d both be so happy. Just think about it, okay?” They sat in silence for easily half a minute before she nodded, grabbing Remus’s hand and giving it a quick squeeze.

“I will, Rem.”

Usually, James Potter woke up energized and excited for the day ahead, but today was different. Three o’clock would mark a month, ending the bet.

See, when he made the bet, he expected it to be obvious. He expected it to end in a week, and though he didn't expect Sirius to get him a date with Lily Evans, he still expected to win.

So when he woke up today without a single clue who Sirius was dating, he felt a bit put out. He got dressed, choosing to not brush his teeth, and headed down to breakfast.

As he sat down, he grumbled what was possibly a greeting, and put a blueberry muffin, his daily breakfast, onto his plate.

“Wake up on the wrong side of the bed, Prongs?” Sirius humoured, trying to see what was wrong.

“Yes, Pads, I did. I woke up on the ‘loser’ side of the bed.”

“It’s okay, James, you’ll know by the end of the day, anyway.” Peter reasoned, setting a hand on the boy’s shoulder.

“I don’t want your sympathy, Wormtail. I’m still upset with you.” Though he didn’t shrug the blonde’s arm off, “You figured it out and didn’t tell me.”

“Yeah, that’s fair.”

“How about this, Prongs. If three comes around and you still don’t know, then I'll tell you after me and Remus’s detention.” Sirius and Remus didn’t have detention, but James didn’t need to know that.

They received a half-hearted grunt in response, and the four all grabbed their bags and headed for potions.

 

When they made it, James looked at the instructions for the day and immediately regained some hope that he had lost.

“Today, we will be brewing Amortentia. You and your partner will have ninety minutes to complete your potion, which should end up being an iridescent pink colour. Afterwards, you shall put a vial on my desk for grading, and we will all go around and say what we smell in the potion. Your ninety minutes start now.” With that, Professor Slughorn sat down at his table and began reading.

James grabbed the arm of Sirius’s robes and shouted in his ear, “Out of luck, Pads! I’ll know what she smells like!” He gasped once more and turned to face in front of him, “And I’ll know what Lily smells. Oh, merlin.”

“Hopefully she doesn’t smell Snape,” Sirius replied with a smirk.

“Don’t even joke about that.” He started chopping up some rose petals to include in the potion. “What do you think you’re going to smell?”

“Probably my love.”

“Well, yes. But I meant like scent wise.” James wasn’t sure if Sirius had heard him, as the end of the sentence turned into a cough. This potion was rather potent in its earlier stages, he observed.

“Scentwise? Oh, I don’t know. Rather interested to see what they smell though.” Sirius didn’t realise he had slipped up until he saw an ecstatic James Potter to his right.

“They’re in this class?” He whisper-shouted and turned around to take note of everyone in the class.

“Shit.” He was quite fond of the muggle swears that Remus used. “James, the potion’s going to burn, look around afterwards, alright?” The other boy nodded but was still bouncing up and down.

Reluctantly, James did as Sirius asked and waited until the potion was finished to do a one-over around the room. He raised a confused eyebrow and squinted at his best friend. “So, they’re in this class?” Sirius didn’t technically didn't answer him, but the blush on the other boy's face did. “I don’t see any girls here who are tall and have short hair, Pads.”

Sirius shrugged and softly chuckled, “Oh no!” He joked.

James turned back to the amortentia and smelled exactly what he’d expected. Broom polish, vanilla candles, and the fragrance of fresh lilies. He felt his shoulders relax before professor Slughorn made another announcement to the class.

“Your ninety minutes have passed, you all should have finished your potions. Now, I will go around and ask each one of you to share what you smell.” James' eyes widened and a blinding smile appeared as he turned to the boy on his right.

Processing the fact that he might have a chance of figuring out who Sirius’s ‘secret girlfriend’ was, he missed Remus' glance backwards at Sirius, stifling a laugh at the raven-haired boy’s worried expression. Remus put a hand over his mouth and shook his head, still looking backwards.

“Why are you worried, Padfoot?” Remus questioned, with a shit-eating grin,

“He’s just being a sore loser, Moony. Knows I’ll win after I find out who he smells.” James butted into the conversation.

Confusing James once more, Remus burst out laughing, which made Sirius put his head in his hands. “What are you two laughing about, I’m feeling rather excluded.”

“Nothing, James. Just the fact that Pads here is about to lose this bet.” James took this answer as good enough, but was still questioning if it was the truth when Remus wouldn’t stop smiling. It couldn’t be that funny to him, could it?

Unknown to James, Remus was laughing at the fact that Sirius would have to share that he smelled Remus’s ointment cream. Remus found out that Sirius was attracted to the smell a few months after they started dating.

-

It was on Sirius’s birthday, and the two of them had gotten extremely pissed, and started playing twenty questions, a muggle game that Remus used to play with his friends back home. About ten questions in, Remus had sat on top of the other boy, with his arms around his neck, and asked “What makes you physically attracted to me?”

“Everything,” Sirius had responded. He meant it to be serious, but Remus had laughed softly and flicked his forehead.

“No Pads, I mean like specific things.” The werewolf rested his head against his boyfriend's.

“I like your eyes a lot and your hands. Your hands are very, very nice.” He reached down and intertwined their fingers. “And the way you smell, like a lot. I really enjoy the way you smell.” Remus leaned back, looking the older in his eyes, earning him a look of puzzlement.

“Sirius.” Remus had stated, “I smell like my cut ointment most of the time.”

He shook his head, dismissing the idea as Remus got out of the bed and headed over to his trunk. “No, you smell like you. Kind of minty, but green like the outdoors. A little sour as well.”

Remus walked back over to the bed, crossing his legs as he sat down. He had gotten a little tub out of his chest and started opening it. “Smell this,” he instructed.

Sirius leaned down and gasped, looking back into his boyfriend's eyes. “Oh, Merlin, I'm attracted to ointment cream!”

-

In the potions classroom, after many of the Ravenclaw students sitting near the front of the room had revealed the scents they smelled, Slughorn was inching closer to the desks the four of them were sitting. “Ms. Evans, may I ask what you smell.”

She leaned down, taking a long whiff from the iridescent potion, “I smell… lavender, lake water, and blueberry muffins, I think?” James had immediately shut off. She had smelled the breakfast food James had every morning, that had to be a sign didn’t it? Who else smells like blueberry muffins? As he continued to be wrapped up in his thoughts over the fact that Lily Evans may be attracted to him, he missed Remus and Sirius revealing what they smelled.

“Um, I smell hot chocolate, old books, and… leather.” Remus hadn’t thought about what the leather might imply before a few kids in his class started giggling.

To his left Lily had teased, “Never knew you were kinky, Lupin.” he had blushed tremendously before unnecessarily stating that it was Sirius’s leather jacket. They both had turned around when they heard the professor ask Sirius what he smelled.

“I smell rain, smoke, and um-” He mumbled something unintelligible, looking at his shoes.

“Repeat yourself, Mr. Black.” Slughorn prompted.

“Ointment cream,” Sirius said, not looking up from his shoes.

“Ointment cream, oh. Quite unusual, Sirius.”

“No, shit.” The boy had murmured, just quiet enough for Slughorn not to hear.

James zoned back in as he was asked, feeling immediately devastated as he realised he had missed what Sirius had smelled. He told the class what he smelled, and packed up to leave as it was getting close to the time.

He decided he would go out to the quidditch pitch to clear his head about Lily and Sirius. Though he was fairly disappointed that he hadn’t been paying attention to Sirius’s confession and lost the bet, the fact that Lily Evans may be attracted to him outweighed that. He had spent years believing that she wanted nothing to do with him, and was having a hard time processing that she may not feel that way.

About an hour later, the girl who had been filling his thoughts showed up and called out for him, prompting him to fly down. “Lily? What’s up?”

She sighed and looked him in the eyes, looking like she had something to say, “Did you lose the bet?” The ginger asked, but James couldn’t help but notice she looked to have something on her mind. After potions, Remus had stopped her and filled her in about blueberry muffins being James's everyday meal.

“Yeah, I did. Officially about thirty minutes ago.”

“Oh, that’s too bad.” He just nodded back, and the two stood in awkward silence when they both started talking in sync.

“You go first.” James said, nodding.

She nodded as well and took a deep breath. “Well, I was wondering if,” She took another pause and looked into his eyes, searching for something to convince her to walk away and pretend she didn't want to do this, only to find his full attention on her and her question. “Maybe you would want to go to Hogsmeade, with me?”

He sat in a bit of stunned silence for a moment before ecstatically agreeing. He grabbed her hand and kissed the back of it, making her flush, “I’d love to Lily, I'd really love that.”

She nodded a few times and smiled softly at him before pulling her hand away. “Next weekend?” She asked. He enthusiastically nodded as she walked away, leaving him in a shock.

“Lily Evans just asked me out. On a date,” he repeated, to himself and the air around him. Before he knew it, his feet were carrying him to his dorm room, excited to tell the marauders what had just happened. He knew that Sirius and Remus had detention, and Peter was off in herbology, but he just couldn't wait. Lily Evans had asked him out after almost six years of pining! On the off chance that Remus and Sirius got out of the detention, he headed up to their shared dorm room.

If he had bothered to check the marauder's map he would have noticed two of his friends lying suspiciously close to each other on Remus Lupin's bed.