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Chapter 26: Chapter Twenty-Six: Instantaneous
Chapter Twenty-Six: Instantaneous
The adrenaline shot to her brain was immediate; she both felt like she needed to breathe and never wanted to breathe again. Every part of her that was touching him felt as if it were on fire – but not a bad fire. Just a tingling, warm feeling that she could not describe. All she knew is that she wanted more.
Her lips moved with his roughly, new, wanting to be closer. Part of her knew this was insane but the other part didn’t care. She pressed herself up against him, enjoying the warmness she could feel even through his sweater and hers. She wrapped her arms around his neck tightly, securing herself to him. He ran his tongue across her bottom lip and she opened up, quickly responding. His hands had moved to rest on each of her hips and he pulled her closer obviously feeling the same need she was.
She didn’t really remember moving (hell, she couldn’t remember her own name), but before she knew it she was backed against a wall and his hips were pushing hers in a most pleasurable way. He tasted different from anything she’d ever experienced and she couldn’t have described it if her life depended on it. His hands slowly ran up and down her sides, making her crazy. She pulled herself even closer, though she wouldn’t have thought that possible, and she heard a quiet moan escape from Sirius. She broke away from him, gasping for air, her whole body tinkling and her mind spinning.
He rested his forehead on hers; Adara stood there breathing in his breath with her eyes closed as reality slowly seeped back into her now-clouded mind. Jayden. The break up. Her horrible day. Then… Sirius. Before she even knew what was happening, she was crying. Not sobbing as she had been before, but just crying. Sirius opened his eyes and ran his thumb over her wet cheek.
“Go,” her voice cracked as she said nearly the same thing she had told him last time they were in a similar situation.
This time, he didn’t say anything; he nodded, wiped a tear from her cheek and walked out of the classroom. Adara watched him go before shrinking down against the wall, curling into a ball, and crying herself into a restless sleep.
She eventually made it back to her dorm room, but it was s late that no one was in the common room and everyone in her dorm room was asleep. Well, she had a feeling Christine wasn’t, but the latter didn’t say anything as Adara climbed into bed still fully clothed.
The next morning, only Tuesday, she awoke as soon as her alarm went off. She climbed out of bed, grabbed her towel and went to shower without looking at any of the other girls. She turned the water on way to hot, hoping this might wash away the eyeliner that had stained itself to her face and maybe do something for her still-puffy eyes.
Her newly cut hair still freaked her out to wash, but she barely noticed it this time. She scrubbed her body then got out of the shower and walked back into her room silently. She felt the stares of her roommates on her but didn’t acknowledge them. She wasn’t in the mode or sympathy or just conversation in general. She knew Christine felt bad for her, but she didn’t want to hear her thoughts on the subject.
She dressed in a clean kit then brushed her hair and threw it back into a ponytail not having the energy to fix it. She grabbed her bag and exited the silent room.
“Do you think she’s really that upset?” Adara heard someone ask as soon as she shut the door.
“They dated for three years,” another answered.
“Yeah, but her and that Sirius bloke have been close for a while.”
“Guys, it doesn’t matter. She’s obviously upset; can we drop it?” Adara was grateful for Christine’s words but knew that she was just as curious as the rest of them. She sighed and kept her eyes down as she exited the common room and headed for her first period class – Runes – not hungry at all. She sat down at her normal table and pulled out her book – she might as well do something while she was waiting.
She was halfway through translating the next story in the book when someone spoke, “You really should eat, you know.” Adara smiled weakly up at Lily as she sat down in ‘Sirius’ Chair’ and put a treacle tart wrapped up in a napkin in front of her.
“I’m not hungry,” Adara answered.
“I know, but you still need to eat,” Lily persisted, pushing the food closer to Adara.
“You aren’t going to leave me alone until I eat, are you?” Adara asked.
“Not a chance,” Lily smiled. Adara sighed, closed her book, and picked up the pastry. Lily watched her take a bite then asked, “How are you?” she asked quietly. “You don’t have to talk about it if you don’t want to.”
Adara thought about it, and for some reason she didn’t mind talking to Lily. Lily was just the kind of person that you could tell your problems too and have her not make a big deal yet do everything she could to help. She took another bite of her pastry, swallowed, then said, “I don’t know how I am.”
Lily nodded, but didn’t push. “I… I guess I’m still in shock, really,” Adara explained. “I mean I knew that things between us weren’t how they used to be, but I guess I just convinced myself that that kind of stuff happened after you dated for so long.”
Lily pinched off a corner of Adara’s treacle tart, “I’ve never had that long of a relationship, obviously, but I can imagine. And, just watching you two, I’ve noticed that you seemed a bit off – don’t take that the wrong way.”
Adara shook her head, “I know. I just hadn’t been feeling the, I don’t know, need to be with him as much as I had even over the summer. But I guess I just didn’t actually think of breaking up with him, or vice versa.”
They sat in silence for a minute, thinking. Adara felt better explaining her thoughts to someone that would just listen and not have any sort of judgment. She liked Lily for that; she never felt judged by her.
“Have you talked to Sirius yet?” Lily asked. “I know that you two were really close and I thought I heard him say something about going to talk to you last night.” Adara’s heart immediately sped up.
“He found me,” Adara said quietly. “We… well, I don’t know where we stand right now.”
Lily looked at her, confused, and Adara gave her the basic outline of what happened. She didn’t mention the way her heart had reacted, or the feeling that his hands on her body had given her, but either way, Lily got the gist.
“Wow,” she said. “That’s a bit low of him to play off your break up like that.”
Adara shook her head, “No, no, no!” she said. “I don’t think he was doing that at all. I just…” she sighed, “I know that we can’t deny there was something, but I don’t want him to be the rebound guy or the guy that just takes Jayden’s place, you know? And it’s just so soon…”
Lily nodded, “You two did connect really fast,” she said. “But, and you don’t have to listen to me, I just think that you shouldn’t let this break up also be the end of your relationship with Sirius – even if it is just as friends.”
Adara nodded, she knew that the redhead was right but she didn’t understand how she and Sirius could be just friends again. After last night, and after his confession that he had realized he liked her, and after she had felt all of that from just one kiss – again.
“Thanks, Lily,” she said.
“Anytime – I had a feeling you might want an outsider friend,” she smiled and gave Adara a hug. For a moment, Adara wished that the sorting hat had just put her in Gryffindor.
Over the course of the next few days, Adara tired to stay out of the crowded places like the Great Hall and the common room when she could because she hated the stare that she received. Most of them were from Ravenclaws who had saw her relationship with Jayden for the past three years and wondered why it had so abruptly ended. Some even asked her if she had just run to Sirius afterwards (though most of these people were Jayden’s friends or ‘followers’ as she’d come to call them). Christine had been nice, but distant and more than once Adara had seen her and Cole hanging out with David and Jayden in the common room. Not hat she minded that, she wasn’t mad that Christine was hanging out with them for they were her friends, too. It’s just that that and their distance lately made it seem like she had chosen to ‘side’ with Jayden.
This didn’t bother Adara as much as she would have guessed, mainly because she spend a majority of her time with the Gryffindors. Well, Lily, Remus, Alice, and James, anyway. It’s not that she was mad at Sirius or he was mad at her, it’s just that there was an awkward tension in the room whenever they were both there. They were civil towards each other, but usually would find an excuse to be elsewhere. Adara was sure that the others had noticed and were just being nice in not mentioning the stupidity of the whole thing.
Yes, Adara knew that it was stupid to not just forget the whole thing and be friends again, but it’s just that this time she couldn’t push the kiss to the back of her mind. It attacked her at the most random times and made Adara wish even more that she were on good terms with Sirius again.
What bugged her the most were the looks the others would give them when they were in the same room. It was a look that plainly said ‘this is ridiculous, you two know better.’ Adara hoped that it was only a matter of time before this awkward stage was over. Surely, they could get past this, right? She hoped so and she couldn’t help but feel a bit more encouraged on Wednesday when she watched Courtney walk into potions, give Sirius a dirty look that he didn’t respond to, then sit on the opposite side of the room.
“What’re you finally smiling about?” Lily poked her and asked.
“What?” Adara turned from that scene to look at the redhead, puzzled.
Lily looked to Courtney, “Oh, yeah they broke up the morning after you and … well, Tuesday morning.” she trailed off; they didn’t mention his name if at all possible.
“That’s…” Adara searched for the right word. “I’m sorry to hear that.”
Lily snorted, “Oh, really?” she raised her eyebrows. Adara gave her a look that make her change her tactic, “I mean, you’re the only one besides her, then. James and Remus threw a party in the commons.”
“Mmm,” Adara sighed. She looked down at her parchment and began to doodle as Slughorn started class. She didn’t know what she felt; everything had just gotten so confusing lately.
The rest of Wednesday and all of Thursday, Adara was slowly beginning to come out of her extreme slump. She was still avoiding certain places and people, but she actually laughed at James when he told a corny joke and ate a second slice of the pie Lily had knicked for her without being prompted to do so. By Friday morning, Lily had finally convinced Adara to eat breakfast in the Great Hall. ‘Just walk in and come sit with me, it will be fine!’ So she had made up her mind to do it.
She walked into the Great Hall and was shocked by the atmosphere that greeted her. It wasn’t the chatty place that it tended to be in the morning – in fact, usually on Friday it was even more happy and chatty than usual due to the weekend, but now… it was almost hushed. It was oddly silent, as if people were only talking in whispers. Everything seemed morose and she didn’t know why; she felt goosebumps erupt on her arms and legs and had no clue as to why.
She walked over to the Gyffindor table and began to look for Lily, she had just spotted her sitting with James and Alice when a large, black, official-looking owl swooped down and landed on her shoulder. The Hall, it seemed, got even quieter.
Confused, and with a terrible ominous feeling, Adara unattached the note from the owl’s leg. She looked at the letter:
Ms. Adara H. Moore
Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry
Sent with regard from:
The Ministry of Magic
Her breath caught, what was the ministry writing to her about? More, what were they writing to her about ‘with regard?’ Forgetting everyone in the hall that seemed to be staring at her, she opened the letter with trembling hands. It was nearly impossible to read it because her hands were shaking so badly.
“Miss Adara H. Moore,
It is with the upmost regret that we at the Ministry of Magic write to inform you of a terrible tragedy. Last night, at approximately 8:00 p.m., a group that call themselves the ‘Death Eaters’ attacked the house of Bryce and Claire Hayden killing both Bryce J. Hayden and the couple’s daughter MacKenzie C. Hayden. Mrs. Hayden was at her office at the time and was not harmed. Auror’s are working hard to find the people responsible and are making some progress. We send our deepest condolences and assure you that your family will be under special protection henceforth.
Head of Auror Department”
She stared at the letter, only taking in one line: killing both Bryce J. Hayden and the couple’s daughter MacKenzie C. Hayden.
She stopped breathing. This was some sort of sick joke. She’d just seen them, damnit; she had a picture of Kenzie, her little sister, her three-year-old sister, blowing kisses into the camera right up in her dorm. She’d just seen it when she awoke to hit the alarm clock off this very morning. They couldn’t be… they weren’t… they were fine…
She didn’t know how much time she’d been standing there but before she could register what was happening, Professor Flitwick was at her side ushering her out of the Great Hall, “We’ll take you to Dumbledore. I’m sure it can be arranged for you to go home for the funerals…” she stopped listening after that last word. Funerals.
“No,” she croaked and jerked out of his grip. She ran down the hall away from him, from the Great Hall, from people. She only wanted to see one person, the person she’d been avoiding – the only person who understood the dark magic because his family had been affected, too.
She reached the portrait of the fat lady in less time than she would have though possible and, realizing that she was crying, yelled, “Get Sirius!”
“What are you talking about?” the fat woman said, pretending not to be the entrance to the place she needed to be in.
“I know that this is the Gryffindor entrance,” Adara sobbed, “get me Sirius!”
“I have no idea what you’re talking about,” she said looking away.
Adara screamed, “Sirius! Please!”
After a few useless attempts at it, she gave up on beating the wall and sat down, crying. “No,” she told herself, wiping away her tears, “this isn’t happening.”
She thought she might have heard some mumbling from the portrait above her, she she wasn’t sure. She was trying to get the heartbreaking memories that were attacking her to leave her alone. Her dad and MacKenzie playing with her stuffed bear… her dad smiling and telling her that she needed to start working on that band plan…
“Adara?” she looked up and saw him. “They said… are you – Merlin! What happened?”
Adara stared at him, half-paralyzed. “Sirius!” she sobbed as he pulled her up and wrapped her in a warm embrace, “Shh, it’s okay.”
“N-no!” she stuttered, “it’s not!”
“What happened?” Sirius wondered softly into her ear.
“They got them,” Adara said burying her head into his chest. “Dad…Kenzie…”
“Miss Moore,” a little voice wheezed, tired from chasing after her. “There you are, we must get you to Dumbledore; he said immediately.”
Adara nodded into Sirius, but didn’t move. Sirius pulled away from her a bit, “Come on, now. We have to go,” he said softly. Flitwick looked at him, “Er – I’m not sure –”
“He’s coming,” Adara looked right at him and said the first coherent sentence she’d said in a while. Sirius accompanied this with a ‘try and pry me away’ look that no one would dare fight.
Flitwick stared at the two of them for a few seconds then sighed, “If you want.”
Sirius pulled away his arm only to wrap it around her shoulders and tuck her to his side. She felt safe even though she hadn’t realized she was scared before. Everything happened so quickly. This morning she woke up thinking it would be just another day and in an instant, her world was completely flipped upside down. Again. Gone. And, while she knew her whole world was falling apart, she had a terrible feeling it hadn’t really hit her yet. She couldn’t grasp the fact that they were really gone. Her dad, her sister; they wouldn’t do this to her.
When they reached the two gargoyles Adara vaguely recalled the last time, the only time, she’d been up there before was when she flooed to Hogwarts not long ago. She had fought with her mother; they still hadn’t made up. She needed to say she was sorry – she needed to make sure that her mum was okay.
Sirius led her onto the ascending stairs; she was barely aware of her surroundings as they entered through a huge wooden door. “Ah, Miss Moore,” she looked to see that the Headmaster was at his desk, but had stood as she entered.
She knew that she should respond to him but she couldn’t open her mouth to do so. “She’s not really very talkative right now, Professor,” Sirius answered for her.
“I understand,” Dumbledore nodded to her. “Please, have a seat.” She and Sirius took a seat in a huge chair they could both fit in comfortably in; Flitwick sat in the other.
Dumbledore sat down and folded his hands on his desk. He looked to Adara, “I wish I could tell you that this was a rare occurrence but in these times, I cannot.” He started, “I can, however, tell you that I am so sorry for the extreme loss and pain that you are feeling right now and if I could I would take it from you.”
Adara nodded, barely taking in what he was saying. She wanted to see her mother; she needed to be there for Claire. She needed… she didn’t know what she needed to do, really. She still could not grasp the fact that half of her family was gone. Sirius tightened his grip on her and all she knew was that she needed Sirius and that he was not going to leave her.
“We have been in contact with your mother, Adara,” she looked up at these words. “She’s fine,” Dumbledore assured her seeing her worried look, “well, as fine as anyone can be.” He amended sadly. “She is set to arrive in about five minutes to take you home – your trunk is being packed as we speak, I assumed you didn’t want to go and pack it yourself?” Adara shook her head. She was sure whomever packed it, most likely Christine, would do it better than she would in this state, anyway.
“You won’t have to worry about any classwork, I’m sure you will catch up just fine,” Dumbledore said, with a slight smile. Adara nodded again; for once, missing classes was the last thing on her mind.
Dumbledore and Flitwick began discussing something, but Adara was no longer paying attention. She leaned on Sirius, who held her tightly, and just kept replaying times from Christmas break in her head. The snowball fight with her dad and Kenzie; MacKenzie with eggs and syrup all over her face, smiling at Adara; opening presents…they can’t be gone.
She heard the fire blaze and it registered that that meant her mother was here to get her. She jumped up and ran over to her, “Mum!” her mother wrapped her in a crushing hug.
“Oh, Adara!” Elle sobbed and held onto her daughter like a lifeline.
“I’m sorry, I’m sorry!” Adara whispered. “I didn’t mean it, I-I didn’t mean it!”
“Shh, it doesn’t matter,” Elle ran her hand over her daughter’s hair. “It’s not important.”
Adara nodded, “Ar-are they really –” she asked, tears once again leaking from her eyes.
She felt her mum nod into her hair, not able to say it aloud. Adara closed her eyes and just stood there, crying with her mum in the middle of the headmaster’s office. No one interrupted and, after a while, they pulled apart. Elle straightened her shirt and wiped her eyes, “Sorry, Professor,” she said to Dumbledore.
“Not at all, Miss Moore. And, please, call me Albus,” Dumbledore stood and bowed. Elle nodded, “Thank you for taking care of Adara.”
“It was not a problem,” Dumbledore assured her. “Her things are waiting at your house.”
“Thank you,” Elle repeated.
“Dumbledore walked around the desk and shook Adara’s hand, kissed Elle’s, wished his condolences again, then exited his own office with Flitwick.
“I’ll see you when you get back,” Sirius walked over and told her.
“What?” Adara turned to face him, her eyes widened. “What? No!” He couldn’t leave her. He had to stay with her. He wasn’t staying here! Her breathing accelerated as if she were sprinting, “You’re coming,” she told him, “you have to come. Please!” she started to tear up again, but she didn’t care.
“Adara, honey…” Elle started, putting a hand on her shoulder.
“No!” Adara shook it off and turned to face her mum, “he’s coming! He has to come. I need him, Mum!” she didn’t know why she needed him so much, but she did. Going through this without Sirius would be too painful. She was beginning to completely lose it at the thought of not having him with her; in a second, she was going to have to be admitted to St. Mungo’s.
“I’m sure he doesn’t want to –”
“I don’t mind at all,” Sirius said, boldly taking Adara’s hand. Adara relaxed the tiniest bit. Elle looked from her daughter, whose eyes now sparkled with tears, to the man who was standing there with her and sighed. Adara knew that she must have looked pathetic but she didn’t care. Sirius made everything better – even this.
“I’ll talk to Dumbledore,” Elle sighed. Adara’s heart and breathing began to slow as she relaxed into Sirius’ side again. “Can you go to Claire’s alone? I told her we’d be there as soon as possible. She’s such a mess.”
“Not alone,” Adara said quietly.
“I’m not leaving,” Sirius whispered.
“I’ll meet you there,” Elle said softly as she disappeared through the huge door.
“Thank you,” Adara turned to look at Sirius.
“Don’t,” Sirius said. “This isn’t a favor; I wouldn’t leave you if you asked, ‘Dara.”
Adara nodded, those words made her feel better. Now was the hard part. She had to go to the place that her dad and sister had died. She had to go see the lone survivor of this attack – her stepmother; well, they were the only two who had survived as part of this family and this was going to be horrible.
She knew that seeing the house – empty of two of the most important people in her life – would make it real. She needed to be brave, for Claire. For her dad. For MacKenzie. She looked behind her as she took a pinch of floo powder; Sirius stood there, determined and caring. She took a deep breath and threw in the powder; she could do this as long as he was there for her. No matter what had happened between them, or what might happen in the future, he was truly her best friend.
A/N: Sorry that it took so long for me to post this, guys. What with the holidays and the queue closure and stuff... yeah. Anyway, I'm kinda in school so i can't leave a really long A/N. I hope you guys had a good break/holiday season. I know I did. So anyway, PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE continue to review. They make me happy. Though you may not want me happy after i just killed them off. Sorry, guys, but i warned you of dark times. R.I.P.