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Photographs by starryskies55
Chapter 1: Beaches
In a small house by the sea, Dominique Weasley wakes up slowly as her alarm clock vibrates underneath her pillow. She checks the time, and internally groans. Her daily routine could be a bit of drag sometimes- although surely she could be exempt today? It is, after all, her thirteenth birthday, and it is already promising to be a glorious day. The sun shines brightly through her open window, sending rainbow reflections from her glass dream catcher dancing across the walls. The familiar briny smell of the sea fills her nose and Dominique sniffs appreciatively. The waves crash on the beach below, and seagulls scream loudly at each other- but Dominique cannot hear it. She leans out of bed, and puts her hand to the floor, feeling for any vibrations through the floorboards which will indicate if her family are up yet. She can feel a little, which probably means someone is making breakfast. She glances across the room, and sees her older sister, Victoire, sprawled across her bed like a starfish, her painted toenails bright against the white of her duvet.
There is a pressure on the bed next to her, and then her large black Labrador, Joey, clambers across her legs. Joey wants his early morning walk, oblivious to the occasion of his mistress’ birthday. Dominique fondles his large ears, as soft as velvet and then levers herself out of bed, padding across to the wardrobe to get dressed as quietly as she can manage- she doesn’t want to wake up Victoire. Joey waits on the bed, his head resting on his paws as he watches Dominique with large soft eyes. She sits back on the bed to pull on trainers, and he jumps down onto the parquet floor, his claws skittering, and then noses open her bedroom door, leading the way downstairs. Dominique follows, screwing her pale, gingery hair up into a loose ponytail, and jamming her wand into the waistband of her shorts.
As she slips through the kitchen, she sees her dad busy at the oven with the pancake pan. He raises a hand to wave to her, and she grins back, grabbing Joey’s lead from the hook by the back door. Bill turns back to his cooking as Dominique leaves. It had been his idea to get his daughter a dog for hearing- after the Healers at St. Mungo’s had conceded defeat, they had recommended the Muggle methods of helping with disabilities. Dominique had been given Joey on her sixth birthday, and he had aided her immensely since then.
Joey bounds in front of Dominique as they walk down the path to the beach. She stoops, and picks up a piece of driftwood. He jumps up at her in eager anticipation, leaving sandy paw prints on her woolly jumper. There is a stiff sea breeze blowing, and it pulls at her hair, tugging it out of its ponytail. She launches the stick as far as she can, and Joey leaps after it, disappearing into the sand dunes. Dominique ties her hair up tighter, and the dog runs back, skidding to a stop at her feet and dropping the stick, wet with saliva.
Dominique gives it a kick, and Joey half-heartedly runs after it, but returns to Dominique’s heels quickly enough. Together, they walk down to the water’s edge, and Joey runs in and out the surf, his black fur becoming plastered to his body with salt water. The beach is deserted so early in the morning. The sky is pale blue and Dominique looks over at the horizon, where the sea meets the sky in a delicate azure haze. She doesn’t think there is anything prettier in the whole world, apart from perhaps the deep orange and red hues of a sunset.
They see a couple walking across the beach towards them, and Joey leads the way back to the house. He knows that Dominique doesn’t like to meet people on her own. Dominique runs to catch up with Joey, and sprints straight past him, across the wet sand towards the dunes. Joey gives a playful woof which Dominique doesn’t hear, and follows, his ears flapping in the wind like wings.
Dominique can hear the blood thumping in her ears though, as she pushes herself to run faster and faster, eventually racing down the garden path and slamming into the kitchen door, forcing it open. Both her parents are in the kitchen, ready to welcome her home, brightly wrapped presents piled high on the scrubbed wooden table. Her mother smiles, and hands her a cup of steaming tea as Joey barges in, rubbing himself against Dominique’s legs and then shaking, sending arcs of water into the air. With a high, tinkling laugh which Dominique has never heard, Fleur gets a towel and covers the awry dog, stopping him from making the kitchen any saltier.
If Dominique could pause this moment, make it a snapshot to cherish forever, she would. Bill is wearing a floury apron tied around the middle and holding a ladle in his large hands, leaning on a high backed chair. Fleur is covering as much of Joey with a striped towel as is possible, and Joey is attempting to lick Fleur’s face with a large, wet, pink tongue. Dominique can even see her sister coming down the stairs on the right, her strawberry blonde messy hair half-hanging over her face and wearing her favourite loose pyjamas patterned with giraffes.
Dominique loves photographs, the stillness and the clarity. She can’t miss anything in a photograph. There isn’t anything happening behind her that she can’t hear, there isn’t anything going on in her peripherals that she needs to keep aware of. It is complete. Dominique’s version of complete.
A/N: this is for CloakAuror9's No Dialogue Challenge, which I kind of twisted to make the dialogue -or lack of it- central. I hope you liked it, and reviews are always appreciated.