* A flower for a pretty girl *
Six girls were sitting in the green grass at the edge of the Black Lake, close to Hogwarts castle. It was morning, but the sun was shining bright and it was rather hot outside. The grass had warmed up nicely, and the girls sat in it, content with the sun shining on their faces and backs. A few birds were chirping happily and a squirrel jumped from one tree branch to another. One of the girls had beautiful red hair and emerald green eyes that shone brightly in the sun. She was weaving flowers in the blonde hair of the girl in front of her. "So, I was thinking," Marlene started, “about tonight. Y’know, I thought, that maybe we could make sure we pair something. Like jewelry or our hair. Do you remember the bracelets that Nashira bought for us two years ago?” Lily put another flower in Nashira’s braid and finished it quickly. “Perfect,” she smiled, “you’re all set.” Nashira moved over to sit next to Mary, with her back against the tree. This way, she could look at the Black Lake, and finish the drawing in her sketchbook. “I think the bracelets are a marvellous idea.” Dorcas said. She pulled a hand through her dark curls and smiled. “You do have dresses that match the bracelets, right?” Alice murmured. Lily giggled. “Of course we do, Al. Mine is purple, if you’d like to know.” “Mine is dark blue,” Dorcas smiled at Mary, “and Mary’s dress is the same as mine, but in a different colour. Hers is yellow.” “My dress is pink.” Alice said. Nashira smiled softly and put her sketchbook down. “Mine is red, with gold. The colours of our brave Gryffindor House.” Marlene stated dramatically. The five girls turned to look at Nashira, whose cheeks heated up. “Mine is a surprise. It belonged to my mother, you see?” At the mentioning of her mother it became silent. She swallowed. It was still a hard subject for her to discuss, as her mother was killed by Death Eaters only a year ago, just after her father had passed away due to Dragon Pox. With her brother becoming a Death Eater, - being one of Voldemorts most loyal followers – she had nobody left. Her friends knew this, and thus, tried to avoid the subject. Nashira was rather sensitive due to the way she was raised and she did not like to speak about her family at all, even though she did love them all a lot. “I really hope it will be a nice Ceremony. I’m rather nervous,” Mary quickly said, before Nashira could get lost in her thoughts. Nashira turned her head to her best friend. Lily took her hand and squeezed it. She smiled and turned her head again to listen to Mary’s story about the Graduation Ceremony.
A few hours later, when the sun was already on its highest, Nashira woke up in the warm grass. Her sketchbook did not lay in her lap anymore. Her head was on Lily’s stomach, and her best friends hand was tangled in her white blonde hair. Slowly she got up and she looked around. It seemed like the other four girls had already gone inside. Probably for lunch, she thought. She nudged Lily, who woke up with a grunt and got up in a seated position. “How long have we been here?” Lily yawned and stretched. Nashira took up her bag from the ground and helped Lily up. “I have no idea, but probably two or three hours. Marlene, Alice, Dorcas and Mary are probably having lunch now.” “Yeah, food is a really important thing in their life,” Lily snorted. Nashira couldn’t help but smile. She took Lily’s hand and started pulling her towards the castle. “Maybe we should go too Lils.” Lily shook her head and turned around. Nashira didn’t say anything, but she watched the girl she thought of as a sister closely. Lily’s head lowered a little as she looked at the nature surrounding them. “I’m really going to miss this,” she whispered. Nashira moved to stand beside her. “I just don’t-“ Lily sighed. “You don’t want to leave,” Nashira said, “I understand. I feel the same way. For seven years, we’ve been able to be here, and now we have to leave this safe haven. Everything danger was there, we could hide behind the walls and the backs of the professors here, but now we’re eighteen and we are going to see the real world with our own eyes. There is a war raging on out there, and frankly, I am very scared.” Lily looked at her best friend. Nashira had had a hard time after her parents died and she could see the tears in her eyes. She reached for her hand. “Maybe it’s scary, but we’ll manage this together. Come on, let’s go. After lunch we can take some time to come back. Do I have to get your boyfriend to carry you back into the castle?” The two girls laughed.
Only fifteen minutes later Nashira found herself walking into the Great Hall. She paused and looked around, trying to take in the familiar sight of the Hall. She looked at the Hufflepuff table, where Mary was seated, chatting with her roommates. Then her eyes darted to the Ravenclaw table, where Dorcas was discussing something in a lively tone with another girl. Her eyes moved to Gryffindor table, where she saw Alice, Lily and Marlene, huddled together with the guys. James had his arm slung around Lily’s shoulders while laughing about something Sirius said.
Before she knew it, her boyfriend got up from the table and walked up to her. In his hand he held a beautiful white rose. He pressed it in her hands and pulled her into a warm embrace. "Lils said that you needed some time alone. Are you okay?" He asked concerned. She pulled away from the hug and looked at his green eyes. "I'm fine Remus, really. You don't have to be worried." She smiled and pressed a soft kiss to his lips. He grinned widely. "Alright, then come sit with us, to use your last lunch at Hogwarts." She let him pull her with him.
After lunch Dumbledore got out of his chair. The moment he did, all the chatter disappeared and every student in the Great Hall looked at him with curiosity. "Dear children, today is the day that you have to say goodbye to all the seventh years. Since you will not be attending the Graduation Ceremony, you will need to say goodbye to them now." A collective sigh passed through the Hall. "Now, I understand it must be hard, but don't shed any tears, because you will see them this summer. Thank you." Everyone applauded and the chatter started again. Nashira felt Remus' arm around her and he leaned over to her. He pressed a soft kiss on her cheek. "Maybe we can go take a walk outside? Or we can go to the bedroom?" Nashira felt her cheeks heat up after his question and Remus grinned devishly. "Seriously Moony, is that really what you think about on the last day at Hogwarts?" Sirius shook his head and pulled Marlene towards him. He whispered something in her air and her cheeks got lightly pink. She slapped him. "You're a filthy little hypocrite," she sneered. Sirius only laughed. "You love me." He simply stated and he kissed her. "Padfoot, I'd really appreciate it if you wouldn't stick your nose in other people's business, especially if that business means me and my girlfriend," Remus said, but he didn't sound angry at all, rather amused. Before the two would continue their stupid conversation, Nashira decided to intervene. "We can go for a walk now Remus."
The sun was still burning hut, but Nashira enjoyed it. Remus held her hand while they walked towards the Black Lake, where they sat in the shadow of the big tree. "Are you sad because we are leaving Hogwarts?" Remus asked. Nashira looked at him and sighed. "You could say that, yes. It's just, that we were always so safe from the outside world here, and now we're going to leave, and I really don't want to." Remus pulled her on his lap and cupped her cheeks. He pressed a kiss on her nose. "You will be safe with me." He said. He looked at her rather innocently and Nashira couldn't help but smile. "I love you," she whispered, and he smiled. "I love you too Nash, so much." He said. He pressed his lips to hers and tangled his hands in her hair, which resulted in the flowers falling out of her hair. She put her head on his shoulder and closes her eyes.
After an hour or so, Lily came to pick Nashira up. "Alright Nash, we've got to get ready for the Ceremony." Nashira got up and pressed a quick kiss on Remus' lips. He smiled. "You go make yourself even prettier than you already are." Nashira blushed and followed Lily inside the castle. The Gryffindor Common Room was filled with students saying goodbye to each other. A few tears were shed, but they disappeared quickly. Nashira followed Lily upstairs, to their room.
Marlene and Alice were already there, putting on their make-up. "I want to do your hair Nash, so make sure you have everything ready, because this is going to take a while." Lily said. Nashira smiled. "Alright, alright Lils." She kneeled next to her bed and pulled out her trunk. She put her trunk on her bed and opened it. Then she took out a small package, which had the words For my little girl on it. "What's that?" Lily moved closer. Nashira opened the package and took out a beautiful silver night gown with a split in the skirt and a deep V-neckline. "Wow." Alice looked at it with big eyes. "It's beautiful," Marlene whispered, and Nashira giggled. "Yeah, it is. Now come on, let's get started!"
"Merlin's beard Nashira! You look amazing!" Marlene called out as soon as Nashira stepped out of the bathroom after she changed into her dress. Nashira felt her cheeks heat up. Lily and Alice had curled her hair and pulled two locks to the back of her head, and clipped those two together with a silver pin, with small diamonds. In her ears there were two silver earrings and around her neck there was a beautiful silver necklace with a pendant in the form of the letter N . The dress' sleeves were ofshoulder and seethrough. Nashira was wearing her friendship bracelet, which was a small bracelet in the form of a long dragon, with a diamond in it. The dress hugged her figure so tightly, Nashira couldn't help but feel a little naked, but seeing her friends' reactions was enough for her to know that it was okay. "Why, you don't look wrong yourself," she stated. Marlene was wearing a beautiful red dress, with golden letters on it. The dress had no sleeves and stopped just above her anckles. Marlene had pulled her blonde hair up into a ponytail and wrapped a red ribbon around it. She was also wearing her friendship bracelet, a golden bracelet with a pendant in the form of a lion, and a crystal in it. "You only need a crown, and you will look like a queen," Lily laughed. Nashira turned around to see her best friend. Lily was wearing a figure-hugging purple dress, with an open back. The purple dress had beautiful golden flowers engraved on it. Lily had let her red hair loose on her shoulders and she was also wearing her friendship bracelet, a golden one in the form of a snake that wrapped itself around her arm, with a beautiful emerald in it. "Lily is right, but I think you look like a princess this way, and for now that should be enough," Alice said softly. The four girls laughed. Alice was wearing a pink dress with short sleeves. The skirt reached her knees and there was a ribbon around her waist. Alice's dark brown hair had been cut short and she had decorated it with a few flowers. She was wearing her friendship bracelet as well, a golden one, with a pendant in the form of a swan, with an agate in it. "We all look amazing," Nashira said with a smile.
A few minutes later it was time to go downstairs for the Ceremony. The trunks were packed and Alice was just checking everything to make sure nothing would be left behind. "I'm really going to miss this." she said with a smile. Nashira pulled her into a hug. "It's going to be okay Al. We will be fine." The four girls made their way to the Common Room. Remus, Sirius, James and Frank were already waiting for them. Alice kissed Frank softly and the two climbed out of the portrait hole without looking back. Sirius took Marlene in his arms and carried her out. Nashira and Lily looked at each other and smiled. Remus' mouth had fallen open upon seeing his girlfriend. "You look marvelous," he murmured while taking her in his arms. Nashira just laughed and kissed him. Then the four made their way to the Great Hall.
Professor McGonagall welcomed them and as soon as they stepped into the Great Hall Nashira could feel the tears in her eyes. She looked around. The four House tables were not there anymore. In the middle of the Hall, there was a beautiful crystal miniature version of Hogwarts. She felt Remus' hand on her back. "Come on darling," he whispered. They walked to the front and sat down next to Lily and James. "Welcome everyone," Dumbledore spoke, and everyone fell silent. "I cannot say that I am happy to see you all here, because I do not wish for you to leave. You completed your last year at Hogwarts, and I must say, I am incredibly proud of all of you. You did very well." The professors applauded. "I want to keep this short, because it is already late and I suspect you want to spend some time alone at Hogwarts. First, the graduation." He started reciting names, with how many OWLS that person had. Every person had to get up and walk to him. He would give them a document. When the last student returned to his seat, Dumbledore started to talk again. "As many of you know, the last part of the Graduation Ceremony is going back. This will happen at precisely twelve O'clock. Let the party begin," as everyone got up, the chairs disappeared. The music started to play and everyone took place on the dance floor.
After the first few formal dances, the music turned wild. Alice and Frank left the Great Hall. Marlene, Sirius, Mary, Dorcas and Peter went in the crowd to dance and that left Remus, James, Nashira and Lily. The two girls were standing next to each other. Nashira could feel her boyfriends eyes on her, and she knew exactly what he wanted, and she also knew that she was not going to give that to him, not tonight. Lily grabbed her hand. "I love you Nash," the girl whispered. Nashira smiled and she felt the tears building up. "I love you too Lils." That was all she needed to start crying. It was Remus who took her in his arms and stroked her back. He kissed her forehead. "We will be together after this." He said. "You will not be alone. Ever." Nashira looked up at him. "I promise you that you won't ever be alone." Nashira smiled. She turned around, just in time to see James going on his knee in front of Lily. The music stopped and everyone turned to look at the two. Lily squealed and threw herself into his arms. "Yes! Yes, I will marry you!" She yelled. Nashira grinned and leaned towards Remus. "They are so sweet together." She whispered. Remus smiled. "Yeah, they are."
Before they knew it, it was already twelve. Dumbledore called them together and bid them farewell. Their trunks already were in the train. When everyone walked outside, Nashira held Remus' hand tightly. She was scared and her hands were trembling slightly. She did not want to leave this safe haven. She did not want to leave these strong walls that would protect her against everything. "Come on, let's step into a boat together." Lily pulled her away and she got into a small boat with Alice, Marlene and Lily. The three girls smiled at her, but she could see the sadness in their eyes. The boats started to move over the water slowly and Nashira turned around. Some lights were still on in the castle. It looked like a fairytale. She smiled. "Goodbye Hogwarts." She whispered. Her eyes fluttered close. They would start a new life, outside Hogwarts.