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Chapter 1: The Passion of a Thousand Suns
For Jane. ;)
It was a beautiful house. It was a mysterious house. None of the other houses on the block could rival it. The trees in the front yard were all gnarled like graveyard trees from bad horror movies. They’re so gnarled that they look kind of like old people’s hands. But that just makes them more mysterious. Just in case you were questioning the mystique and otherworldly mysterious-ness, allow me to reuse more lame adjectives to prove my point again. It was super mega awesome eerie.
Inside the house, a solid, muscular, beautiful man was sitting at the kitchen table. He was looking angsty. What makes it even more angsty is that he didn’t know what he was angsty about. His eyebrows were knit together and he was wearing a deep green V-neck sweater that showcased his perfectly arranged, not-too-thin, not-too-thick chest hair. His lips were like honey (never mind how that is possible, since honey is liquidish). His eyes were like the flame-y parts of candles. His nose was like a faucet, but the plumbing wasn’t broken and it was a rather straight, angular nose. His skin was one-quarter beige, one-quarter ceramic-tile-white, one-quarter creamy ivory, and one-quarter milk.
“My love,” cried a voice. It was ridden with depth and emotion and lots of woe.
Cedric (that’s the muscular angsty man) stood up at once, and ran to the open window. From below, dead leaves were blowing in the wind. They were blowing in circles, like a tornado. They made a whooooooosh sound. It truly enhanced the mysterious, haunted appeal of the grand old house. It’s so grand a house, in fact, that we should henceforth refer to it as an estate or a manor.
But most importantly, standing in the center of the inexplicable leaf tornado, was Cho. Cho Diggory. (I will allow you a moment to let that sink in.) Just by looking in her dark, snapping eyes, you could see right through her soul into a memory – the memory of how she went back in time to save her love – her Cedric – from the clutches of some very old man with no nose whose name I have forgotten because I am too busy thinking about angsty Cedric and angsty Cho. But it’s a good angst, rest assured.
Cho’s hair is edgy and black, and the ends are dipped with red to make her more punk and interesting. She has shimmery gold eyeshadow and full lips and is not the whiny crier that we know from canon at all. The only tears she sheds are when she is helping a mother cat give birth to a litter of kittens. Cho Diggory is a professional Cat Midwife. With this occupation, I am both original with inventing wizarding world jobs; and also cleverly letting the audience know that she is kind to animals and therefore very nice and soft-hearted. But also punk-ish – don’t forget the hair. She’s so original! Original, I tell you!
“My love!” Cedric calls. We have paused for about fifteen minutes to explore their appearances and back-stories in too much detail, but they do not seem to notice. After all, they could gaze into each other’s eyes forever. There are invisible beams of electric, sparkly mind-connection-ness tunneling through the window from one pair of orbs to the other. If it hasn’t been hammered into your skull by now, allow me to point out the fact that Mr. and Mrs. Diggory are soulmates of the acutest kind, and you can just forget about ever falling in love yourself because it’s going to pale in comparison. Their love is deep…like…the buckets in one of those old vacuum cleaners that operates on water. Yeah. One of those buckets. Or maybe a nice-sized humidifier.
“I’m leaving you!” Cho shouts.
“No!” Cedric gasps. We are suddenly in present tense. Prepare for lots of switching.
“I have to!” she had called through her tears. (See?) Cedric was astounded. His darling Cho never cried unless there was an animal being born! His mind was spinning. He closed his eyes. When he opened them again, she was gone.
“Crap,” someone muttered. Oh – Cho hadn’t gone, after all. She was trying to apparate but had tripped over her shoe and splinched herself. Her head was sitting on the ground, disconnected from her body. “Well, this is awkward.” She was looking especially angsty at this moment, but still beautiful and exotic and distraught.
“Cho! I won’t let you leave me!”
Cedric rushed down onto the lawn and picked up Cho’s head. She glared moodily at him, protesting as he stuffed a large hat on top of her head and wedged her on the sitting room shelf to serve as a bookend.
“My body’s going to be back any minute to get me, and you’ll be sorry,” she warned.
“I have to keep you with me forever!” he exclaimed, cried, mourned, wept, and screamed. “I thought we were meant to be! What about all those frozen peas I put on your knee as an ice pack when you sprained it? What about that time you wore the red dress that was clearly two sizes too small, and I told you that it looked great on you? I mean, for crying out loud, the buttons were popping off.”
“Red is my color!” She yelled. “It’s the color of inner turmoil. And it matches my hair!”
At that second, Draco Malfoy bolted into the room. Never mind the fact that he’d never been in the Diggory house before, and the sitting room was on the top floor, and there was a series of complicated stairwells and hallways to navigate through before reaching it. Perhaps Draco had dramatically swung each and every door he encountered open as loudly as possible, just in case he discovered them there.
“You can’t have her, Cedric!” he said, blue-grey eyes fierce and desirable. “We have a long and convoluted history that you somehow don’t know about, and we’re lovers now!”
“Gasp!” Cedric said.
“It’s true,” Cho sang.
“I love you, Cho,” Draco chimed.
“I love you, Drake,” Cho confessed. Draco did not wince at his nickname. He smiled, bright eyes brimming with gleaming, shining, shimmering tears of salty condensation. Despite the cold grey eyes and cold white-blond hair and incessant use of turtlenecks, he was such a warm individual. He cradled Cho’s head in the crook of his arm, petting her like a cat.
“But I totally got here first!” Cedric insisted. “Why are we all so out of canon?!”
“Cannons go ‘boom boom’,” the batty old lady next door shrieked. Until that moment, she had been hiding in the chimney.
“My body!” Cho shouted gleefully. Her headless body slid through the chimney, knocking Batty Old Neighbor onto the ground. They were both covered in soot.
“Wanted to stop by for some eggs,” Batty cackled loudly. She smelled like old Christmas wreaths. It was rather pungent. “I’m making pie!”
“I love you, Cedric!” Cho proclaimed, fixing her head back onto her neck. She ran into his open arms. “I don’t know what came over me!”
“I’m going to forgive you and completely forget all about this,” Cedric vowed.
"Feeeed meeee," Batty Old Lady crowed, gnawing on her own arms.
“And I’m going to still be angsty,” Draco added, “but since loose ends are unappealing, I will conveniently fall in love with someone else very soon, and we will all be friends and approve of each other.”
“Let’s make some chicken,” Cedric said. Cho agreed. And then they went into the bedroom to eat, because living rooms aren’t a romantic enough location.
The next day, Cho informed her husband, very lovingly and tenderly and emotionally and happily, that she was not crying because a cat was giving birth to a litter of kittens. She was crying because she was going to give birth to a Diggory.
And two months later (because calculation doesn’t matter in AU), Cho gave birth after a series of words describing how much it hurt. It was a little girl (of course), and she was twelve pounds (holy crap), nine ounces, and had very long hair and brown eyes and smelled like rainbows/orchids/waterfalls/Brazilian plants because she never had any dirty diapers. She was a miracle child.
And if she touched your face with her hands, you could see her thoughts. Wait a moment – are we sure this is still Harry Potter? Oh, well. Chochina never cried and she slept all night long and Cho lost all of her baby weight in two minutes. And she was always energized and smiling and they took lots of family pictures in bed, all of them wearing white and smiling and being sappy.
And then Bellatrix burst into the room and turned Cho into a raccoon.