All right, this wasn't the way things were meant to go.
She'd walked into Sikowitz's class late to find Beck kissing Tori. She did not know if it was a play, nor did she stay to find out, because honestly, she didn't want to know. All that she saw in front of her eyes was red, colouring everything with rage and jealousy.
Biting her lip, she'd fled from the classroom, not bothering to listen to Beck's cries of 'Jade! Wait up! It's not what it looks like!' or the snickers of the class. All she heard was the ringing in her ears, and all she could see was Beck and Tori kissing, both of them so happy.
Angrily, she ran into the bathroom, determined that she was not going to cry. She stormed over to the mirror, staring at her destroyed reflection- the way her eyeliner seemed to have run a bit down her face. Pressing her finger tips to it, she thought over and over, I wish I was anywhere that here. I wish I was in another world, one where Beck and Tori don't exist.
The mirror swirled before her eyes, distorting her reflection until she faded into the mirror. Before she could so much as even try to protest, she felt herself being sucked into the mirror. She tried to scream, tried to pull herself out of the mirror, to keep herself in the bathroom, but she was being pulled in so hard that resistance was useless. Then she was swirling around, turning upside down and back up again. Without warning, she was thrown onto a street that she did not recognize. It hurt- pain seared through her knees as they made contact with the ground- but she grit her teeth and bore it. There was no use crying out in this world of strangers.
Dusting herself off, she forced herself to get to her feet, slowly, almost painfully. Suddenly, another voice startled her. "Are you all right, there?"
Looking up, she found herself looking up into a pair of brown eyes- similar to Beck's, but no, this wasn't Beck. He was awfully handsome, though. No. She wouldn't let herself think like that, not so soon after her first breakup.
"I'm fine," she hissed, ignoring the pain in her feet. "I don't need your help."
"Such a Slytherin," the boy muttered under his breath, then his eyes widened as if he'd said something really stupid- which, really, he had.
"We're not in Harry Potter, idiot," she informed him cruelly. "I know those dorky books make you feel like you can live your fantasies, but-"
The boy's eyes widened. "You know about Harry Potter?"
"Of course," she replied, looking miffed and confused. "I might be a bit of a- well, a different person, but I'm not totally out of date on the popular culture."
"But you know who he is?" the boy looked absolutely shocked.
"Well, duh," she retorted. "Too bad he's not real."
"Of course he's real!" he exclaimed, frowning. "He's my father!"
She stared at the boy in shock and confusion, and in that moment, she knew that she had two options. One, she could believe the boy to be mentally unstable, and go talk to someone halfway normal. Two, she could go along with this whole Harry Potter charade and see where it got her. In an instant, she chose the second option. Jade West had never been one for normal or taking the easy way out, anyway.
She stared at him for a moment, drinking him in- muscular body and all. "Who are you?"
"James Sirius Potter," he told her with a friendly smile. "And you?"
"Jade West," she replied, not bothering to make up a fake name- this crazy was no threat to her. "Where am I?"
"London, England, of course," he told her easily. "One of the more remote parts, though- I'm here with my family on an outing. But look, Jade. You look really lost. You just sort of fell out of the sky. Do you have a place to stay?"
"No," Jade replied hotly, "I don't even know where I am or how I got here, but I don't see how that's any of your business."
"Well," James informed her, a confident smile taking over her his face. "My father's sort of the hero type, obviously, and he's' always taking in strays- stray cats, stray dogs, stray dragons. Pretty much whatever he can take in. I'm sure he wouldn't mind taking in a stray girl.
Biting back the cruel remark that bubbled to the front of her mind (she could tell that James was earnestly trying to be nice), she said, "All right, then."
"I'll take you over to my family, then," he said with a cocky smile. "I'm sure you'll love them."
She found his sarcasm appropriate when they finally got back to his family. Two parents stood there- one dark-haired, one ginger- and two children (young teenagers), a dark-haired boy and a red-haired girl, stood with them.
"Who's that, James?" the young boy asked with a smile.
"Your girlfriend?" the younger girl sang.
"A friend from school?" his mother offered politely.
She smirked as James' face heated up a brilliant red. "No! I, um, I just met her, actually." But (though he probably didn't want her to), she heard him whisper to his brother, "She secretly thinks I'm sexy, though."
"In your dreams, Potter," she replied flatly before turning to his parents and siblings awkwardly.
Thankfully for her, James jumped in. "Mum, Dad, Lily, Albus," she snorted quietly at the younger boy's name, "this is Jade West. I don't know how she got here- neither does she, really, but-"
The redhead cut her son off. "It's a pleasure to meet you, Jade. I'm Ginny Potter and this is my husband, Harry Potter, and our children- James, who you've already met, Albus, and Lily Potter."
"Pleasure to meet you," Jade choked out, hoping that they wouldn't noticed the sarcasm she couldn't keep out of her tone.
"Anyway," James continued, looking at Jade pointedly, "Jade doesn't know how she got here or how to get back to where she lives, and since we take in a thousand stray animals anyway that Lily brings home, I was wondering if we could take her in for a bit. Just until we figure out how to get her back. A stray girl isn't so different than a stray cat…"
She noticed Ginny and Harry exchange glances, probably doubtful about letting a strange teenage girl into a house with two teenage boys. Desperately, she blurted out, "I have a boyfriend."
Both of the parents chuckled, but James' eyes flicked over to her, looking both shocked and surprised- why hadn't she mentioned it before? Truth was, she hadn't mentioned it because she wasn't sure if she still had a boyfriend. Had she stayed, she was almost sure she would've broken up with Beck, but of course, nothing was for sure. Things might have changed. Uncomfortably, Jade tore her eyes away from James' probing gaze and looked expectantly to his parents.
"I suppose we can take her in for a few days," Harry looked a bit uncomfortable but smiled at her anyway.
Grinning, Ginny was sure to inform her, "But you still will not be sharing a room with James."
"Not that I would want to," Jade muttered under her breath.
She watched as the two parents turned to each other and began to discuss. James nudged her. "If you're going to stay with us, you're going to have to be more polite."
"I don't do polite," Jade hissed back, scowling.
He laughed quietly and the parents stopped talking at last, turning to them. "We're going to Apparate back, but you two will need to Floo back since it's risky to use Side-Along Apparition with more than two people and all."
"Alright," James shot Jade a confident smile, but she was not reassured. The Floo did nothing to reassure her. What had she gotten herself into this time?
Before her eyes, Harry, Ginny, Lily, and Albus disappeared. She blinked, disconcerted, before turning to James. "I demand to know what's going on here."
"We're going to Floo back to my house," James replied, as if it should be obvious.
"What is a Floo?" Jade demanded, scowling.
"You'll see, James said confidently, picking up his pace a bit. Not amused one bit, Jade continued to walk at her slow pace, keeping her arms crossed across her chest.
James turned around. "Stop pouting, would you?"
"I'm not pouting," Jade informed him, not feeling happy about any of this at all. "Keep walking backwards and you'll crash into someone."
"I will not," James replied, but his voice faltered and he turned around as if to check.
"I'll make sure of it," she told him with a scowl. He gulped, probably because she looked and sounded as dead serious as she felt. Frowning, she watched as he turned so that his eyes fell upon a hotel-looking place.
"We can Floo from here," he said, still confident and gleeful as always, and it was then that she realised how very little she affected him. Sighing, she wondered if she was going soft or something.
He walked into the hotel, motioning to the fireplace. "Ladies first, love."
"Don't call me that," she hissed stubbornly, walking over to stand beside him. As she looked at the fire, she blanched for two reasons.
First, the fire was green. Second, he could not expect her to get into that to travel, could he?
The room looked semi-regular, a wooden room- wooden walls and floors- with a small fan going around the room slowly. But there was a green fire, which made the room unusual.
She voiced her opinion on this method of travel quickly. "You cannot expect me to get into that. No way."
"Scared?" James crossed his arms, smirking at her.
"No," she told him, not really sounding or feeling brave at all. Then she mustered up all of her courage and masochistic tendencies and informed him confidently, "In fact, I'll go first, if you tell me how."
He handed her a handful of powder, grinning from ear to ear and not protesting a bit, much to her displeasure. "All you do is throw a handful of powder down and say the name of the place you want to go. Be sure to say it clearly. In this case, the name you need to say is Godric's Hollow. Godric's Hollow," he repeated.
"Whatever," she rolled her eyes, stepping into the fire, not letting her fear consume her. She tried to concentrate. "Godric's Hollow." The fire consumed her, but it didn't hurt like she had thought it would. The fire didn't burn her. It consumed her, and the world was fading again.
She skid across the floor, landing at the feet of James' younger brother Albus. Dusting herself off, she jumped to her feet awkwardly. "Oh, hello there."
"Where is James?" Lily asked, looking quite scared.
"He's behind me," Jade told them. "I insisted that I come first because he implied I was scared."
Lily laughed as James popped out of the flames, grinning at all of them. "I see you made it, then," he said to her.
"Did you really expect me not to?" Jade asked crossly.
"I failed the first time I tried," Harry laughed at the memory. "I said diagonally instead of Diagon Alley, and I ended up at Knockturn Alley, one of the worst places around. Good times, really."
Jade had to laugh at that.
Then, as if it was all a big explosion, everyone burst into questions- Are you a Muggle? Where did you come from? Who are you? Everyone except Ginny, who offered her an understanding smile.
"Guys," Ginny told them with a kind smile, "I think that Jade's quite tired. Harry and I agreed that she could stay with Lily, if Lily's all right with that-" Lily nodded enthusiastically,"- so yes. James, how about you show her to her room? I don't think that Lily's tired yet."
Instantaneously, Lily's mouth fell open in protest, but it closed when she saw the mysterious twinkle in her mother's eyes. Jade saw it too, but she decided to just go along with it.
James led her up a staircase silently, as if he was trying to think of the words to say. At last, he spoke. "You have a boyfriend?"
"Not exactly," Jade replied with a shrug. "He cheated on me just before… before I came here. So probably not anymore. I was trying to think of a revenge plan, actually…"
Looking relieved, James just nodded. "All right, then."
That was their only conversation until they reached Lily's room, covered in flowers and pink and Jade hated it, but she had to be polite so she just bit her tongue, murmuring under her breath, "Ugly room."
"Well," James said, staring at her, "Good night, then."
"Good night," she called after him, but he was already gone. As she walked him walk off, she wondered how she could be so familiar (and so interested in) someone she had only known for a few hours. She supposed that was the wonder of this new world of magic.
Because honestly, she couldn't think that he was mental any more.
She woke up in the morning with the sun shining through her window, and she grumbled, wondering who had pulled the curtains open in her room again- she preferred to sleep in absolute darkness. But then she opened her eyes and saw pink.
Terrified, she let out a small scream.
Lily's eyelids flew open. "Jade! Are you all right?"
As she looked around the room, all of the events of the previous day came flooding back to her, and she remembered where she was. Angrily, she rolled over in her bed. "I'm absolutely fine. Leave me the… heck alone."
"Someone's moody," Lily laughed, rolling over (positive as always) and going back to sleep.
She frowned, stretching out her arms, and slowly slid out of the bed, feeling sore in every place imaginable. Standing up, she stretched out her arms and went to go check out the damage in the bathroom mirror.
Her makeup was smudged, and she realised absently that she didn't have any makeup with her. Sighing, she decided she had to go to the store soon, if she was going to be here a while. Without her makeup, she felt naked.
With a frown, she grabbed a brush and ran it through her hair, smiling absently at the fact that her hair streaks were still intact. She decided she was decent, at the least, decent enough to go downstairs.
Slowly, she made her way down the stairs, spotting James, Ginny, and Harry sitting at the kitchen table. She offered them a small smile. "I know I look bad. Don't comment."
"No," James responded automatically. "You look great." Confused, her eyes snapped to his face just in time to see him blush.
"I know," she replied, a small smirk gracing the edges of her face.
From beside him, Harry cleared his throat. Both Jade and James' faces snapped to him as he spoke, both of them trying to look innocent. Finally, Harry spoke. "So, I think it's time we got to the bottom of this mystery about Jade. Ready to answer some questions?"
"Shoot," Jade responded at once, crossing her arms across her chest.
"All right," Harry folded his arms across his chest, staring at her. "Where did you come from? What time, country, city?"
For a second, she was quiet, but then she finally spoke, feeling everyone's eyes on her. "As far as I know, it's the same year and all as it is here, or else I'd be out of luck. I come from America, the losers across the water and all." She rolled her eyes. "And my city is called Hollywood, where all the big stars live."
"Merlin!" Little Lily appeared in the doorway, looking unhappy. "I thought I asked you to let me be here when you questioned her? Anyway, you live in Hollywood?"
"It's not that great," Jade scowled. "Bunch of idiots and airheaded girls that tend to get on my nerves. But yes, I'm from Hollywood."
Head apparently swirling with thoughts, Harry continued, "All right, you're from the USA, then. How old are you?"
"Sixteen," Jade replied easily, not meeting any of their eyes, though it was an easy question and all.
"Sixteen," Ginny repeated, her eyes trailing meaningfully to James.
Frowning at his wife, Harry continued, "Here's the tough one. How did you get here?"
At first, Jade considered keeping her head down and biting her lip to keep from crying as she continued. But then, she decided it wasn't her and looked up determinedly, keeping her confidence. "So, I walked into drama class- I go to a performing arts school – to find my boyfriend kissing this girl from my class that I absolutely loathe. I neither know nor do I care whether it was a play or just because. But I ran out, because I didn't want to deal with it. Found myself in the bathroom, pressed my hands against the mirror and wished for something. And then I found myself here. It's not like I still care about the idiots, anyway, but I don't understand why I'm here," she scowled at them.
They all looked to each other. Scowling, James hit his fist on the table before he just stared at her. "I'm sorry, Jade."
"I don't need your pity," she responded. "I just want to know why I'm here."
"I don't know," Ginny replied, looking out of the corner of her eye to Harry.
Sighing, Harry just looked at her. "I don't know, Jade. I would say that the mirror was a Portkey, but the magical legislation in America is nearly as tough as it is here- they wouldn't let something like that slide, especially with a Muggle. Which leads me to the question- are you a Muggle? Are you non-magical?"
"I don't know," Jade gave him a shrug."I don't do magic or defeat dragons or anything, if that's what you meant. But… I think we're from different worlds. My boring world of superstars and freaking fame and ugly losers like Vega, and your world of magic."
And as the words came out of her mouth, she started to think that the people who adored Harry Potter weren't quite so wrong after all.
Everyone stared at her, all of them, until James finally spoke. "So… you don't exist in my universe?"
"Yep," she popped the 'p', trying to figure out why this was so surprising. She fingered the streak in her hair with a frown. "I'm from a world where I'm the one who ruins people's lives. Surprise, right?"
At that, the tension seemed to break. "That would be Al in our universe!" James crowed, and Albus stumbled down the stairs to shoot James a scathing glare. Beside him, Lily cracked up.
As the whole kitchen erupted back to activity, she felt someone's lips by her ear. "I always knew you were out of this universe, Jade."
"I hate you," she retorted, but she had to laugh anyway.
The rest of the day was jam-packed with people trying to figure out a solution to Jade's little dilemma. Lily, who obviously believed that she could do everything better than everyone else, kept suggesting things. "Can you Apparate to the US? Cause then Daddy can take you there and Apparate back! But then there's the universe thing…"
Harry disappeared to the study, and Ginny explained that he was probably going to Floo his co-workers to ask about solutions. Everyone else seemed busy thinking.
What amused her the most was that they seemed as if they cared about her. Other than Beck (who, to her delight, she'd nearly forgotten about), not many people cared about her back at Hollywood Arts. It was a nice feeling, but no, she wasn't going soft at all.
Then, around the time when the sun was setting in the sky, James disappeared. She didn't know where he had gone, but it was getting harder to convince herself that she didn't care. Nobody seemed to know where he'd gone, either, so she decided that she would find out for herself.
A thick tangle of woods lay behind the house. At first, she was scared to so much as set foot into the woods, but then she reminded herself that she felt no fear. Slowly, she crept up to the woods, pushing vines and thorns out of her way, smiling as she was pricked by the thorns.
The woods seemed to go on and on forever, almost into the distant sunset. But she reminded herself that there was a large possibility that James was out there, so who was she to refuse the chance to talk to him alone?
Finally, the woods came to an abrupt halt and she found herself at the edge of a creek. "Whoa," she muttered, brushing a piece of her hair out of her face.
A voice echoed out of the dimness. "Whoa is right," James Potter grinned at her, coming up a rock to wave at her. "You've found my hiding spot, I see. Just couldn't stay away, could you?"
"What?" Her face contorted in indignation. "You're a loser, James Potter, and I hate you!"
He seemed used enough to her by now that he took it in stride, instead just offering her a hand. "Look, I know you hate me and all, but the sunset's pretty much beautiful from down there. Come with me, since you're so interested in getting away?" He offered a hand.
She scowled and kicked a rock at him, but he just blocked it with his hand- his reflexes were quick, she noted. Sighing, she just leaned forward and took his head, following him down there. "Don't make assumptions about me."
"I try not to, but it's hard," he replied jokingly, offering her a sweet smile. "Oh, look, this is about where we stop."
The sunset was breathtaking, she had to admit. Even though she wasn't much of a nature person, there was something so satisfying about seeing the sun sink down into the sky, leaving an array of pretty colours behind. She took in a breath, but let it out upon seeing his eyes on her, watching her reaction. "Bug off, Potter."
"I just like seeing how much you like it, West," he replied with a laugh. "I thought you might."
Her eyes travelled over to him, eyeing him warily. "It's not possible."
"What?" he asked, looking concerned.
"That after one and a half days, you should know me better than a lot of my friends back in Hollywood do. That after one and a half days, I should be thinking about you in ways I've ever only thought of one guy in before! None of this makes sense! You're from a different universe, a different world," she reminded him, growing angrier by the moment.
He got to his feet along with her, looking her in the eyes. Then he spoke some of the truest words she'd ever heard: "Sometimes, magic doesn't make sense. You just have to go along with it."
Then he sat down, legs almost touching the surface of the creek. She wasn't sure what she was meant to do, but after a moment, she sat down beside him. Cautiously, he reached over and intertwined his fingers with hers. "I was right, though, about what I said? You wanted to get away from it all?"
"I hate crowds," she responded immediately, trying desperately not to break away from his touch. It was fiery and sent a heat through her entire body, but her body was screaming back that it was wrong.
Amused, he looked over at her. "I figured."
"I have a list of things I hate," she told him, her mouth curving up into a smirk again. "Care to hear it?"
"Why not?" he leaned his head back, flipping his brown hair out of his face as if it would help him to listen better. "Go for it."
"I hate crowds, I hate ducks- I really hate them, all right? I hate Tori Vega- she's my archenemy of sorts, though I like that word, archenemy, it sounds cool. I hate the sun, allergies, October, mustard, lullabies, babies…" she rambled on, crossing her arms defiantly across her chest.
Yet he did not leave, as she'd expected him to, nor did he tell her to shut up, as Beck had. Instead, he just inclined his head, looking riveted and chuckling when she thought he might. It was as if he actually cared.
And that sent a weird thrill through her body.
That night, he walked her back to her room. Outside of the room, it was as if it was the end of a date. He looked as if he wanted to kiss her, and she felt like she wanted the same.
But it was too much too soon, and she knew it. In school, she'd always loathed the play Romeo & Juliet because they fell in love within a matter of days. She knew that it couldn't, shouldn't be possible, but James was no regular human and neither was she. And even if she no longer believed in love, there was something different about the fiery boy- something that had never been there with Beck. In a weird sort of way, she trusted him (disregarding the fact that she'd known him about two days at that point).
The next day at breakfast, she came down to find all of them waiting for her. Her breath caught in her throat- it couldn't be time for her to go back already, could it?
But no, Harry told her gently, "We think we may have found a way for you to go back. The problem is, it might take a while. We just want to know if you're comfortable staying here for little bit longer."
"Of course she is," James cut in, shooting a glance at Jade.
"That's not really your place to say, son," Ginny glared at James before inclining her head to look at Jade. "Are you, dear?"
She thought it over for a moment. Though she had an inkling of something like desire to go back to Hollywood Arts, she honestly did not want to face Tori and Beck, or be questioned about where she had disappeared to. Besides, she would miss James (and all the rest of them, of course)- besides, there was something endearing about the world of magic she'd entered. With something that was as close to a real smile as she ever got, she informed them, "You bet I am."
They all sighed in relief as Harry launched into his explanation. "You say that you came here through a mirror. I'm beginning to consider that this mirror is similar to the Vanishing Cabinet that my 'old pal' Draco Malfoy used once to help the Death Eaters- though I believe it appears and disappears at random. We'll just have to wait for it to come back."
She thought about that for a second. "You think that the magical mirror is going to come back for me?" Rolling her eyes, she shook her head. "I don't know about that."
"It sounds unreasonable," Harry began.
"But Dad's an Auror!" Lily jumped in, her brown eyes shining with admiration. "He's almost always right about everything."
Jade just shrugged. "I suppose I'm in no hurry for the mirror to come back, then."
They all seemed to laugh at that, and the tension in the room diffused as Ginny went back to making her cake, Albus and Lily jumped into a conversation, and James walked over to her.
"Suppose you're here for a while, then," James whispered into her ear.
"Guess I am," she replied, smiling a bit of a smile.
"You should smile more often," he replied, running a hand through his hair. "You look prettier when you do."
And no, there shouldn't have been chills running down her spine at that simple compliment. But there were, and she didn't know what to do.
His hand came far too close to her face, and he simply brushed a piece of hair out of her face. "You- had a piece of hair…" he told her.
Then he smiled, stood up, and strode away, leaving her to watch him and wonder what the heck was going on.
That night, she crept into the room that she and Lily shared to hear sobbing. Confused, she asked quietly, "Lily, are you all right?"
Usually, she didn't care about the well-being of others. But for a young girl, Lily was all right, cute, even. She reminded Jade of herself at a younger age, and she realised at that moment how very much she would've liked someone to ask her if she was all right when she was twelve.
Lily stopped sobbing enough to look up at her. "Oh. Jade. Hello… and no, not really."
Slowly, Jade walked over to her. "Look, I normally don't care about people, but I'll care about you just for this bit. What's up?"
"My brother," Lily sniffed. "Not Albus, obviously, but James. He won't stop giving me a hard time because of what House I'm in. I thought that family loyalty would run deeper than House loyalty, but I suppose not."
"What House are you in?" Jade inquired curiously.
"I'm a Slytherin," she replied, and Jade noticed the green and silver scarf at the foot of her bed then.
"Slytherin?" Jade repeated, her jaw dropping as she remembered the words James had spoken to her before- 'such a Slytherin'. Yet, he hadn't given her a hard time because of what House she probably would've been sorted into, but he was giving his own little sister a hard time and making her cry? Even though she'd never been actually sorted into Slytherin, she felt her house loyalty kick in. "That jerk!"
"I know," Lily said unhappily. "But don't say anything to him, all right? I don't want him to think I'm a crybaby or anything."
"All right," Jade lied, but as Lily turned over and went back to sleep, she knew that she had to have a word with one James Potter.
She rolled over and tried to go back to sleep, but things filled her head- Lily's cries, along with many memories from back in Hollywood, though she tried harder to ignore the memories.
It took her a while to fall asleep that night.
It was late by the time she finally pried her eyes open. Groaning, she stretched out, and then the memories of last night hit her. She stood up quickly, ignoring the rush of blood to her head, and dashed down the stairs.
Knowing her hair was in a frenzy (and not caring), she stormed down the stairs to the kitchen. They all gave her strange stares, but once she saw Lily was not around, she demanded, "Where is James?"
All of them exchanged glances meaning something like 'is this girl mentally stable?', but Ginny finally responded, "I don't know. Do any of you?"
They all shook their heads, looking confused, and that was enough for her. Right after that, she figured out that she knew exactly where James was.
But she couldn't tell them that, because as much as she despised James at the moment, she wasn't going to give away his place of solace. She nodded, sitting down to eat a quick breakfast before she ran outside, heading straight for the woods.
The branches tangled in her messy hair and caught on her pajamas, but she didn't care. She knew exactly where she was going and just how to get there this time.
"James!" she yelled angrily once she finally arrived there. "James Sirius Potter, get yourself up here right now."
"I'm here," James climbed up the ridge, offering her a smile. "Is something wrong?"
"Is something wrong?" she retorted, crossing her arms. "Is something wrong? There are a lot of things that are wrong, James; where do you want me to begin?"
"At the beginning?" he replied obliviously.
"All right, then," Jade hissed, frowning. "James Potter, you're a freaking idiot and a loser and I don't want anything to do with you."
"What- what did I do?" he answered, looking entirely terrified. "What did I even do to you?"
"Not to me," Jade insisted. "But to your sister. You made her cry, James; did you know that? I was just starting to believe that you were a decent human being, but you won't lay off your sister and just because she's a Slytherin! It makes me wonder, James. The first time we met, you called me a Slytherin. Does that mean you have something against me as well?"
"Of course not," James' face fell. "It's just-"
"Just what, James?" she hissed. "Just that she's your sister and you can say whatever you want to her? I hate people like that, James; I really do. And you fooled me into thinking that you were different. I suppose not."
"I am different, Jade," he protested. "I mean- I had a problem with Slytherins, but it's gone now."
"It's gone now?" Jade's mouth fell open, as if she was pretending to be surprised, and her black nails flew up to her mouth. "Well, excuse me. I thought it was gone before, but you fooled me then, too, so how am I supposed to believe you now?"
"I swear, I'll try-" James began once again.
"The time for trying is done. It's time for doing," she hissed at him, crossing her arms. "And by the way, if you ever get onto Lily again for being a Slytherin- which, by the way, I realise now is the best house- I will take that walking stick of yours and shove it up your-"
She cut herself off, deciding that she'd said enough by the look of horror on James' face. And, since she really had nothing else to say, she took off running back through the woods to the Potter house.
Tearing right through the kitchen and dining room, she didn't give any of them a second glance until she made it to her room.
She didn't realise she was crying until she looked into the mirror and saw the eyeliner streaking down her face.
Mentally, she reprimanded herself- no, Jade didn't cry over stupid guys, especially not James Potter, the biggest idiot ever. But the messed up eyeliner told her otherwise.
Dabbing under her eyes, she wondered if she had been a bit too harsh on him or if it was just something like a guilty conscience.
She then decided that he deserved every word he got.
The rest of the day was filled with awkwardness. She came back down for lunch once she cleaned herself up, and much to her displeasure, James was there too. She couldn't even bring herself to so much as look at him.
Everyone else seemed confused, and Lily looked more uncomfortable than ever. But with everyone else, she pretended that everything was just fine- smiling and laughing and all. Then she would look back at James and the smile would disappear into a glare and a scowl.
Ginny, obviously sensing that they'd had a fight, demanded that they fix dinner together. Too bad she didn't realise how stubborn Jade really was. The whole time, Jade refused to speak to James unless it was to ask for him to pass the salt or to ask him for some flavouring. There was no conversation, and Jade liked it that way.
The rest of them arrived at dinner expecting to see Jade and James as happy and chummy as before, but Jade still wouldn't so much as give James the time of day, much to everyone's irritation and sadness. The dinner was filled with awkwardness, which Jade was quick to comment on- though when everyone asked why she was angry with James, she wouldn't explain why.
It was James versus Jade for a while after that, and both of them had their tricks. They didn't ever mention that they were fighting or confirm to anyone that Jade despised him now, but they fought in secret. Once, he put mayonnaise in her shampoo- she smelled it before she put it in her hair, thankfully. Another time, she cut up one of his t-shirts, so that once he put it on, the rips were evident and he looked like a zombie, of sorts.
The war kept on in secret for a while. It was one bad girl versus another bad boy and there seemed to be no clear victor. She would smirk a lot of the time at him, meaning that she'd done something once again.
Once, she whispered to him, "You're not so bad, for a Gryffindor."
But for a few days, that was the only nice thing she said to him. Once, at dinner, the tension seemed to be worse than ever, and everyone could feel it.
"Can you pass the salt?" James asked with a fake polite smile.
A frown popped onto Jade's face. "Why should I?"
The people around Jade seemed to take a breath in all at once, as if they hadn't known that she was this rude- she was, really, but she hadn't been around them. Frowning back at her, James replied, "Because I want some salt on my food?"
She picked up the salt as slowly as she could, and then reached over and unloaded half the salt onto his plate. "Is that enough?" she asked sweetly.
Unhappily, James popped out of his seat. "Look here, I don't know what your problem is-"
"I already told you what my problem is!" she yelled, anger prominent on her features. "But you obviously don't listen because you have the attention span of a goldfish, and the brain of one too-"
"I don't know how you would know how big my brain in! We've never been to school together!" James protested.
"I can tell by the way you speak," Jade hissed, standing up then too so that she was leaning toward him. "I can tell by the way that you don't give a crap about anyone other than your idiotic, arrogant self."
"It's not like you would know, but I do care about people other than myself," James replied hotly. "Actually, you should know-"
That seemed to shut her up for a moment as she tried to figure out what he was on about, and Albus jumped in at that point. "Why don't you just snog and get it over with?"
Both Jade and James jumped, looking taken aback and confused, as if they'd just been snapped out of their own personal bubble. Ginny didn't look as amused as Albus and Lily, though.
"Look, this has gotten to be too much," she told them, standing up and crossing her arms. "I'm tired of the two of you fighting all of the time. You're going to learn to respect your differences if I have to force you to, and believe me, I surely will."
"How are you going to do that?" Jade spat, before realising who she was talking to and blanching. "Oh, I mean…"
"I'll show you," Ginny replied bitterly, grabbing each of their wrists and pulling them off to a room. "You two will stay in here until you learn to work out your differences, and I mean really- not any of your fake apologies or anything."
"Are you sure that's a good idea?" Albus called, and Lily cackled behind them.
"Yes, I'm sure," Ginny answered, a fond smile taking over her features. "Mum used to do it to me and Ron when we would fight… which was a lot of the time."
"But it's different," Lily reminded her. Too bad it was too late for that, as Ginny pushed them into the room and shut the door.
It was dark, at first, until a light flickered overhead and then turned on so that she could just make out James' face. She looked over at him with a bit of a frown. "Look, James-"
"No," James cut her off, and while it didn't thrill her that he'd interrupted her, she listened. "You're not the one who needs to apologize, Jade. That would be me, and I'm just really sorry, all right? I'm a bit of a jerk, and I realise that now. I was treating you well, but I was being mean to my sister at the same time, though you would be in the same house. And I'm just sorry about that…"
"I wasn't going to say I'm sorry, anyway," she informed him, but when he looked at her through his puppy-dog eyes, she let out a snicker. "Kidding, kidding, chill. I'm sort of… ugh, sorry as well. I shouldn't have done any of the mean stuff I did to you, and I shouldn't have gotten so angry."
"Friends?" James offered, his handsome face flickering in the dim light.
"Friends," she replied, extending a hand.
And as he shook her hand, his flaming skin pressed against her ice cold skin, she realized just how very much she wanted to be more than friends.
After that, things were still awkward, but not nearly as much. The underlying tension had not disappeared yet, but it was remarkably less present. At times, they would actually have decent conversations. But then she would remember why she'd despised him so and their relationship would not be going as smoothly anymore.
There were times when she felt the hate flaring back up again- when he'd offer her a smirk that stretched to the edges of his face, or when he'd make a cocky comment that indicated that he was superior to everyone in the world- which obviously, he wasn't. But then she would have to wonder if it was because she hated him or because she sort of had feelings for him (but only sort of).
It was a normal day when it happened. She didn't know why it happened, but she didn't really fancy questioning it. All she knew was James had disappeared and she knew just where to find him this time.
She had to rectify their spot, make it back into a happy place instead of a place where she'd started their infamous feud. So she tore through the woods until she found him sitting just where she knew he would be.
Breathless, she leaned against the tree- not sure if it was from the running or if it was because of him. "Potter."
"We're on last name terms again, are we?" James smirked, walking toward her and crossing his arms. "I thought we were more mature than that, West."
"We are," she rolled her eyes as she walked toward him. "I just like the sound of your last name and well, it's fun to say."
"I agree," James remarked dryly, moving closer to her. "The girls just can't stop saying it, you know?"
"I'm sure," she laughed, pressing her back against the tree.
He moved in, closer still, until his breath mingled with her own and she could not stop herself from inhaling and exhaling deeply. He was right there, and he was just so James that it was unbelievable. He was cocky, fiery, the opposite of her and yet so much the same. She didn't know what to do, what to say, except to move closer to him, loving the feel of his body against his- fire with ice, yet somehow, he didn't melt her.
"Well," she demanded impatiently, "are you going to kiss me or what?"
His face was so close that she couldn't stand it. "What about your boyfriend?" he teased relentlessly.
"I don't give a... I don't care about him," she informed him, and since she was sure she could not wait any longer, she grabbed his face and pressed his lips to hers.
His arms wrapped around her back as he eagerly kissed her back. It was everything she'd thought it would be- fire and ice, the perfect contradiction but somehow so right together. Somehow, they were separate but still the same.
At first, guilt hit her like a tidal wave. She had a boyfriend, because she hadn't actually ended things with him, and James was from a parallel universe- how wrong was this? They could never be together and they were only making things harder on the two of them. But then she realized how very much she didn't care, and how very much she wanted him. She didn't care about Beck, not anymore. How could she even think of the cheating jerk when she had James all to herself?
When his arms were around her like this, there was no doubt in her mind that he thought of her in the same way she thought of him- it was far too soon for love or anything like it, but too deep for something like a silly crush. It was something she'd never felt before, and she mused absently that she rather liked it.
Once she finally found the strength to pull away, she stared into his eyes, which were so similar to Beck's that it sort of stung but yet so different. "James… I…"
"No need to say anything," he replied cockily. "I know how great of a kisser I am and you just can't resist."
For once, she didn't try to prove him wrong. She just leaned back in again, pressing her lips to his in that way that made him smile against her lips, knowing that he was right. It wasn't like it mattered, though.
She supposed that she could sacrifice and allow James to be right about this one little thing (because there was no way that she would give up kissing him for something silly like pride).
Then a voice interrupted them, fake and high and silly-sounding. "Mum! James is snogging Jade!"
Footsteps followed along with childish giggles as someone obviously dashed away, entertained by the notion that James and Jade would behave in such away. James sighed. "My sister's getting her revenge, I suppose."
Entwining her fingers with his, she asked childishly, "What did you do, James?"
"I… um… I sort of announced to the whole family, extended as well, that Teddy and Victoire were snogging," James said, rubbing the side of his neck and blushing. "In my defense, I was going into third year, but still. My apologies for anything that she- or anyone else in my family, for that matter- does. It's so far out of my control."
"I guess I'll just have to get over it, then," Jade smirked, staring up at him. "Any chance you can make it up to me?"
"I'll try," he retorted, then his lips were on hers again and it was the same fire-and-ice thing she'd felt before but somehow, it was so much more.
After that, they were James-and-Jade, the alliterated names that everyone thought to be adorable. They held hands under the table and exchanged glances that meant something but everyone else was oblivious to.
Ginny seemed thrilled, but Harry didn't seem to be as amused- he seemed to be taking every opportunity he could to keep the two of them apart for whatever reason. Jade assumed it was because either he knew what teenage boys were capable of or he knew how forbidden their relationship was- honestly, they were from different universes. But she didn't care, really.
Then, one day at breakfast, Lily proceeded to make the whole thing so much more complicated by exclaiming, "Are James and Jade going to get married?"
Looking over at James, Jade noticed that he'd gone beet red. She squeezed his hand and waited for someone to remind her of the sad truth.
"Honey," Ginny jumped in, frowning a bit, "You do remember that Jade's not from this universe, don't you? She's from her own world, and at some point, she's going to have to go back to her universe."
"Oh," Lily replied, embarrassed. As she stared down at her plate, she said, "Right."
Everyone exchanged glances, not liking how awkward the situation had just gotten. It was at times like these that Jade wondered what the point was.
What was the point of falling in love if it was only going to be ripped away from her in the end? This was only going to tear her down in the end.
But then she would look at James, at his radiant, handsome face, and remember that she honestly didn't care- that she just had to make use of the time that they had left, even if she didn't exactly know how much time that was.
A few days later, Ginny pulled her aside. "I'm sorry, Jade, if this makes you uncomfortable in any way, but we're going to have some visitors for the next couple of days." She offered Jade an apologetic smile.
"Why would that be not okay with me?" Jade demanded. "I honestly don't want to disrupt your everyday lives. If you want to have visitors, then by all means, have them over. I won't be bothered in the least."
But she considered taking that statement back when the door was flung open and a girl ran straight at James, nearly tackling him in a hug.
His arms wrapped around the girl's waist and she felt something like jealousy flare up. The girl was awfully pretty, with long, dark red curls and big brown eyes. She didn't know what to do except to stand there awkwardly, wishing that the girl would pull away.
Finally, she released him with a laugh and stared at him, grinning. "I've missed you, James! Hugo just wouldn't stop going on about the pranks that you did at school last year with him, and I wanted to talk to the prank master to make sure that he was right and all." She winked at him, causing him to laugh, and jealously flared up in him once again.
She was just about to march up to them and put her arm around him (and possibly punch the girl in the face), when they walked over to her. James grinned from her to the girl, as if they would get along just like that. "Rose, this is my well… uh, my girlfriend, Jade."
Only she understood the gravity of this declaration. They'd kissed (a lot) and snuggled. They knew that they liked each other. However, they'd never officially called themselves boyfriend and girlfriend… at least, until this moment. But she decided that it was a good an admission as she'd ever get and smiled evilly.
Instead of making some mean comment like she'd imagined Rose would, Rose grinned brightly at her. "It's so nice to meet you!"
Then James turned to her. "And Jade, this is my cousin Rose."
Cousin. The word hit her like a pile of bricks. She'd assumed that Rose had a crush on him or something of the like, but no, she was his cousin. They were family; they were related. She was stupid, blinded by her jealousy.
But as Rose stood beside James, a smile on her bright face, she realised the similarity between the two of them- the shape of their faces, and not to mention, their smiles looked exactly the same. Relaxing immensely, she wiped the scowl off her face enough to give Rose a half-smile back. "Hello, it's great to meet you."
Rose's face lit up even more, and she grabbed James' arm, pulling him off. "We were thinking of playing Quidditch with the family, if you wanted to invite Jade to play-"
"What's Quidditch?" Jade interrupted, accidentally cutting Rose off.
Confused, Jade watched as Rose's eyes fell to James, looking just as confused as James was. Quietly, James gave a small chuckle. "Uh, Rose, Jade's sort of a Muggle… only sort of, though."
"What do you mean, sort of a Muggle?" Rose's eyes just grew wider as she looked from Jade to James.
"She's not exactly from this universe," James squirmed, looking uncomfortable.
And right after those words passed through his lips, Jade understood why. The girl started to fire questions like a machine. "Where are you from, then? What is it like in your universe? How did you get here?"
"Rose," James protested, looking embarrassed.
"No," Jade shook her head. "It's all right. I'm from a universe where there are no magical people- where Hogwarts doesn't exist. I live in the world of celebrities, where how well you sing and how pretty and sweet you are is basically everything. I despise it, obviously. I got here through some kind of strange magic- I obviously don't understand, since I know absolutely nothing about magic."
Rose's eyes widened as she stared at Jade. "You have to come watch us play Quidditch, then! I know it sounds better, it being a sport and all, but it's actually a lot of fun to watch. I never play, because I sort of fail-"
"You're good at it!" James protested.
"But even when I watch, I find myself enjoying it immensely and I'm sure you would too," Rose gushed. "Come on, you have to!"
James looked at her, expectantly, almost, and then she felt as if she had to agree, so she simply nodded. "I guess I will, then."
"Awesome!" Rose exclaimed. "Obviously, you're playing, James, I'll go tell Fred, then."
And at that moment, a rush of people came in. A lot of them had the same colour hair as Rose or Lily- another red headed girl, a redheaded boy the same age as Lily, a boy with caramel hair streaked red. They were all socializing and yelling, and Jade had to wonder if these people were the few guests that Ginny had mentioned.
"These people are all your family?" Jade asked in amazement.
"I have a bit of a large family," James replied, looking embarrassed. "It's a bit of a long story."
"And I'm a bit thrilled to see this sport of yours," Jade said sarcastically, rolling her eyes.
"Trust me," James jumped in, "it's a lot of fun. And I'm really good at it, which is why I sort of became popular in school and all. I mean, it's not boring like a lot of Muggle sports."
"Are you trying to say something about Muggles?" she protested, raising an eyebrow, but a hint of a laugh escaped her mouth and she slid her fingers through his. "Bring me to this fun sport, then."
Smiling over at her, he led her to the backyard. But as soon as she got there, her jaw dropped.
They legitimately had brooms. Whenever she thought of witches, she thought of brooms, but since she'd met the Potters, she'd ruled that out. But now, they all stood there, all of them holding brooms and looking insanely excited for the sport.
"There's a bench over there," James told her gently. "If you get bored, you can just go inside, but I doubt you will."
"Sure," she retorted, but as soon as they began, she saw what he was talking about.
The way they zoomed around on brooms was just amazingly breathtaking. They were moving so fast that she could barely keep track of it. There were balls up there, and they were being thrown around the field from person to person, but she couldn't tell who had them at any given point. She tried to figure out the game, but it seemed nearly impossible.
Too bad James had been right about one thing- she wasn't bored, not in the least. In fact, this was one of the more entertaining things that she'd watched so far.
She didn't know how they could do it- rest on the brooms so far up without falling off- but they seemed to be doing just fine.
Then James was knocked off and he was falling, falling- she screamed, though she couldn't hear herself. He hit the ground hard, almost enough to kill him (had he been a Muggle, at least). Scared, she ran over to him. "James? Are you okay?"
"Fine," James managed to choke out. "Go get my mum or someone, would you?"
Worried still, she ran back into the house, jerking open the door to the house as quickly as she could. Running up to Ginny, she grabbed the woman's shoulder. "James… fell off…"
"Oh, I'll be out there in a moment," Ginny shot her a dazzling smile. "I've just got to grab my wand."
Dazed and confused, Jade stumbled back outside to see James looking as dazed as she felt, and she hoped secretly that Ginny would hurry up, though she didn't voice her worry. She wasn't such a coward, was she?
Ginny finally ran out there, carrying her wand. Muttering something under her breath, she waved her wand over James' body and watched as he began to stir again, looking completely healed. It was strange, watching it, and it almost took her breath away.
While she was there, she'd noticed James' family refrain from using magic as much as she was sure they normally did, and she understood why now. Even this small display of magic took her breath away.
"He's completely fine, now?" Jade inquired, looking up to meet Ginny's eyes.
"Good as new," Ginny told her with a grin.
It was then that Jade realized how much she didn't belong there.
Later that night, once all the family was gone, she snuck into James' room, feeling so bad and so uncomfortable. James didn't look displeased, though. He just took her into his arms, letting her bury her head in his chest. "Not that I don't want you to be here, but why are you here?"
"I think I have to go now," Jade informed him, feeling depressed and sad but slightly relieved. "I just… I just feel it. Is that weird?"
"No," James told her. "If you have to go, then you have to go. But let me properly say goodbye…"
He leaned in, pressing his lips to hers once again and inducing the same fire through her veins that seemed to be present whenever he kissed her. She relaxed into the kiss, wrapping her arms around his neck and kissing him back. For that one second, the only thing in the world that was real was James, his brown eyes and cocky smile and-
The mirror behind her flashed. Sighing, she pulled away from him. "I suppose this is goodbye, then."
"I suppose it is," he tried to mimic her American accent. "I think this is a bit too soon, but I think I love you. Just to let you know and all. And I'm sure that you'll be back here soon."
"I suppose so," she replied, taking a step back, but then she felt glass behind her and realized that she'd hit the mirror. "I lo-"
But it was too late- the mirror sucked her in, and all she could manage was a simple "bye" before she was pulled away.
She found herself on the bathroom floor once again, her elbows slamming against the floor. Painfully, she pulled herself up to her feet.
Suddenly, a squeal filled her ears. "Jade! Jade, you're back! You've been gone for 3 days and I thought that you were kidnapped, but here you are and-"
She was tackled, her air supply being cut off. Amused, Jade realized that the person was Cat. She stared at her. "Wait, what? How long have I been gone?" In the wizarding world, it had been a few weeks. That obviously wasn't the same as there…
"Three days, silly, I already said!" Cat exclaimed, staring at her. "Are you deaf? Anyway, where were you?"
Rubbing her head, Jade replied, "You wouldn't believe me if I told you."
"Course I would!" Cat sang, and she grabbed Jade's wrist. "Come on, I've got to take you to see everyone else!"
Rolling her eyes, Jade relented and let herself follow Cat.
"Jade," Beck called from behind her. "I suppose you're back, then."
Coolly, she turned around, crossing her arms and glaring at him. "What do you want, Beck? I don't want to talk to you. Get the heck away from here."
"Look," Beck grabbed her wrist, ceasing her hand motions. "I know you're angry, but kissing Tori was a mistake. You know I love you-"
"Of course you do," she crossed her arms and scowled at him. "It was a mistake last time too, wasn't it? Look, this is stupid."
"Yes, it is," Beck looked relieved. "So you won't mind-"
"It's stupid," she continued, "Because I keep going out with you even though all you want to do is play mind-games with me. But guess what? I'm done."
"What?" Beck exclaimed, looking startled and hurt (much to her pleasure).
"I'm done with you and your mind games, Beck Oliver," she told him crossly. Crossing her arms, she stormed out of the room, leaving him behind.
After that, life wasn't the same anymore.
Most of the time, when she saw a mirror, she would press her fingertips to it, hoping for an opportunity to go back to the wizarding world. But most of the time, it didn't work.
Until one day, she caught a flash of a brown eye, and she felt her heart jump.
It was sad, sometimes, how much she missed him- even if he was a jerk, because in the end, the one she thought was a jerk wasn't as much of a jerk. And the one that she had loved? In the end, he was the real jerk.
A/N: Lol. What. Just what is this? All right, this is what happens when my muse goes crazy.
THIS IS A CROSSOVER, VICTORIOUS/HP, AND IT EXISTS IN AN ALTERNATE UNIVERSE… where James and Jade are the same age, so, yeah. I don't even know. Please don't flame about that. Credit to Summer for the awesome name that she gave this universe- Victory-verse. I adore that name.
Un-betad, so feel free to point out any out any grammar mess-ups and I'll change them.
I REALLY HOPE YOU LIKE THIS. BECAUSE JADEJAMES IS LIKE MY NEW JAMES OTP. I DON'T EVEN KNOW WHERE THIS CAME FROM, THOUGH, AND I HAVE NO IDEA WHY I WROTE IT, OR HOW SUMMER GUESSED IT O.o
BUT PLEASE REVIEW ANYWAY, EVEN IF IT'S CRAP? JUST A SMALL REVIEW WOULD MAKE MY DAY.
Please don't favorite without reviewing. =)