On Friday I had lunch with Betram, who had a free period afterwards which we decided to spend together before I went upstairs to get set into homework before the weekend started in earnest. “We don’t do this nearly often enough,” he murmured into my ear as we settled ourselves in a nifty little alcove he’d discovered behind one of the staircases on the first floor.

“Don’t talk about that now,” I said. “Just make the most of the fact we’re together.”

He grinned at me. “I like the sound of that.” I smiled back and pulled him in closer.

He was right, we didn’t catch up nearly often enough and so I tried to make the most of it when we did. Within reason, of course – I was still wary of heading back into the Hufflepuff common room or, worse, his dorm, and therefore preferred to stay in places just a little more public. The seductive part of it was, of course, the fact that when we were making out it meant that we weren’t talking and that meant in turn that I was less likely to stew over what was wrong with our relationship, instead focusing on what made it good. And lazy hours like this one certainly helped me do that.

Of course it was over much too soon and it seemed like no time had passed when we had to call a stop to it. “Bloody school,” Bertram grumbled as he put his arms around me again. “We have to do this again. Soon.”

I smiled as I reached up and kissed him. “Sounds good to me.”

We stayed for as long as we could but unfortunately we eventually did have to part, or at least we did if Bertram wanted to pass Charms, so at long last he grabbed his school bag and headed off to that class and I went in the opposite direction and started making my way up to Gryffindor Tower.

The quickest route from Bertram’s little alcove took me past the library, and as I walked past its entrance the door suddenly opened and I was bowled over by Sirius, who was looking a little fraught as he barrelled along at a rate of knots. The collision was pretty forceful and we both ended up rather awkwardly on the floor.

“Oh, Laura, sorry, I didn’t mean to run into you like that,” he said apologetically as we picked ourselves up and I gathered my scattered books back into my bag. “I was just trying to escape …” His voice trailed off.

Getting back to my feet, I looked at him in confusion. “Escape? What from?”

He looked a little uncomfortable. “More like who from,” he muttered, and I looked up to see Elvira Vablatsky and Greta Catchlove standing at the open the library door, noticing him talking to me and throwing death looks in my direction.

Sirius followed me around the nearest corner where I waited while he got himself sorted out, putting two or three library books into his bag. I grinned at him. “What, you don’t want to spend your afternoon with Elvira and her friends? Whyever not?”