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Behind Enemy Lines by MidnightBlue_x

Format: Novella
Chapters: 12
Word Count: 22,201
Status: WIP

Rating: Mature
Warnings: Contains profanity, Strong violence, Scenes of a sexual nature, Substance abuse, Spoilers

Genres: Drama, Horror/Dark, Romance
Characters: Lupin, James, Lily, Sirius, Regulus, R. Lestrange, Voldemort, OC, OtherCanon
Pairings: Other Pairing, James/Lily

First Published: 03/22/2010
Last Chapter: 05/18/2016
Last Updated: 05/18/2016

amazing banner by AdinaPuff @ TDA

'Bad love will make a museum of you.'– Jillian Fleck


Chapter 1: Friday Night
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Disclaimer: The OC’s and parts of the plot are all that belong to me. Everything else belongs to J.K Rowling, I do not claim ownership to it. Thank you for reading.

Look at this amazing CI by victus. of TDA. Are they not the most beautiful things you've ever seen?

In typical London style, it was raining that morning as Victoria Drew pulled her apartment door closed behind her and dashed across the street. In typical Victoria Drew style, she was already running late for work.

In all honesty, Victoria couldn’t have cared less—her job was pathetic, but she desperately needed the money. Otherwise she’d have to move back in with parents, and she did not want that to happen. She knew she wouldn’t be able to bear another year of snide remarks about her unemployment made by her father, and endless cups of tea and circled newspaper ads that her mother would bring up the stairs with a sympathetic look on her face. It was almost worth sitting behind a desk all day, doing nothing, if it meant avoiding that.

She’d been lucky to get the job at the Ministry of Magic at all. At the time she was thoroughly outraged and even a little bit depressed that it was the only job she could get. She was a Hogwarts graduate, an ex-Ravenclaw and her NEWT scores were more than impressive. Yet, there she was—a nineteen year-old stuck in a dead-end job.

Once upon a time, she’d had ambition. In her Hogwarts days, her friends used to joke about her becoming the next Minister of Magic but that had died out soon after graduation. As it turned out, Victoria wasn’t even good enough to become the Minister’s secretary—the job she’d originally applied for. By now, she realised ambition would get her nowhere, instead it was much easier if she just accepted her position in life.

Her family had never been rich, but they weren’t poor either. Sometimes she wondered if it would have been easier if they had been, rather than stuck in this awkward middle class limbo. That awkward limbo seemed to define her entire being. She was halfway between pretty and ugly—though some would argue for one more than other. She was halfway between talented and useless. She was halfway between a witch and a muggle—a half-blood. It’d never bothered her at school, but now it seemed like it was all that mattered.

Sure, she wasn’t a muggleborn but nowadays, her muggle father was as damning as ever. In Hogwarts, she’d been one of those silly, one of those naïve people that didn’t believe in what was coming. She’d laughed at the idea of a war in the wizarding world, and now she couldn’t ignore the feeling that it was right on her doorstop. At any moment she could be taken away like the others. There one moment, gone the next.

She’d already lost friends—Danny Larson, for example. Victoria had met Danny on her very first day at Hogwarts. They were both Ravenclaws and became fast friends. He was a muggleborn, and only two weeks after their graduation—he disappeared. Victoria and her 'friends' had never quite recovered. She’d lived in fear that she’d be taken any moment ever since.

The Ministry job was sort of like a safety blanket. More than that though, it was much needed money. It didn’t pay very well, but the small amount she got every week was saved up and stored in the back of her sock drawer—just waiting for the day when she had enough to up and move herself somewhere safer.

It’d been her plan for almost a year now, and she was almost ready to leave.

If Victoria had had any idea what was going to come in the next few months, she would have left then and she would have never looked back. Unfortunately, she was not blessed with the ability to foresee the future. If she’d been able to see into the future, she never would have gone out that night. But she couldn’t, and so she did.

It was an unspoken sort of weekly ritual. Every Friday night, Victoria would make her way down Diagon Alley and into a seedy little bar in Knockturn Alley. She would take a seat at the very back and order a firewhiskey from the barman—before that firewhiskey arrived, the boys would.

It was impossible to say how this had all started. In fact, she couldn’t remember her reasoning at all but that didn’t stop her from turning up every week.

“You’re looking well,” Evan Rosier said, sliding into the seat beside Victoria. He gestured to the barman to bring him and his friends a round of firewhiskey. “How’s the Ministry treating you?” It was a joke with these boys, because they all well and truly knew how Victoria felt about her work.

“When are you finally going to leave?” Wilkes asked, with his trademark smirk.

Victoria brushed both of them off with a wave of her hand, “When are you all finally going to do something with all your free time?”

Avery snorted, “We have plenty to do with our free time. The Dark-” Avery drifted off, no doubt as a result of Evan’s sharp glare. They never of He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named in front of Victoria, though she knew very well that all four of the boys had taken the mark long ago.

“If we got jobs, then we surely wouldn’t be able to spend as much time with you,” Regulus Black drawled, wrapping his arm around Victoria’s waist.

“You’d miss Reg then, wouldn’t you?” Wilkes teased, and Avery chuckled in response. That was another thing they never discussed—whatever went on between Regulus and Victoria. Then again, Wilkes and Avery had always been a few ingredients short of a potion.

“Keep your mouths shut,” Evan furiously whispered over the table, “We don’t want anyone recognising any of us.” He raised his glass to his lips and took a long sip of his drink. By the time he was done, his charming smile was plastered over his lips again as if it had been there the whole time.

Victoria felt a shiver run up her spine—it always terrified her how quickly the boys in front of her could change. That’s what they were—boys. They were just barely out of Hogwarts—Avery and Wilkes were older than Victoria (only by a year), but both Regulus and Evan had only graduated that June. She knew what they were, what they must have done but she could see this boyish innocence in all of them in certain lights. In a way, she figured herself to be a little in love with them all—her boys.

“Are you ready to head off?” Regulus whispered in her ear, bringing her back to reality. She nodded weakly, and followed Regulus out of the bar—the boys all nodded in acknowledgment as they headed out.

A part of her knew how unhealthy this all was, but knew she could never stop. She was too far gone to pull herself back now.

Author’s Note: It’s been a little while since I posted anything on here, but I’ve been considering rewriting this story for years now and I decided to finally to do it. This is very, very different to the original and it’s much better—trust me! Anyway, I hope you all enjoy this and thank you for reading!

*Edited (slightly) 15.10.15

Chapter 2: Diagon Alley
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Disclaimer: The OC’s and parts of the plot are all that belong to me. Everything else belongs to J.K Rowling, I do not claim ownership to it. Thank you for reading.

This beautiful CI was made by victus. of TDA

Victoria woke up the next morning with a pounding headache. It took her an hour before she was able to coax herself out of bed and into the kitchen for a cup of tea. Her apartment looked the same as always—a little messy, but still bearable. There were no signs that Regulus had ever been there.

That was how this worked after all. Sometime in the very early hours of the morning while Victoria was still fast asleep, Regulus would pick up his things and disappear from her life entirely until the next Friday. Sure, it was strange and Victoria didn’t even want to begin to imagine what her mother would have to say about it, but it worked. For a couple of hours a week, she was wanted and that’s all she needed.

Victoria poured a drop of milk into her cup of tea and curled up on the couch with her newly delivered copy of The Daily Prophet. This was her usual morning routine—a cup of tea, the couch and a quick check through the missing pages of the paper. It was bittersweet in a way, but she’d gotten so used that she didn’t even think of it anymore. It was just something she did to pass the time.

She was lucky that she got weekends off—the Ministry was usually empty on the weekends and so there was no use for secretaries, especially terrible ones like Victoria. Needless to say, she looked forward to the weekends more than anything. Usually, she just spent her time lying around her apartment, doing nothing but it was still nice. When she was fresh out of Hogwarts she had used the weekends to catch up with her friends, go shopping with the girls or get a spot of lunch and then spend the night at outrageous parties and cosy bars where they all got royally drunk. Those days were long gone.

She lost contact with those friends months ago—the loss of Danny caused a strain on their friendship, and it was then that she realised they’d only ever talked to her because of Danny. She decided to put them out of their misery. Nowadays, the only people she talked to apart from her parents and the people she was forced to make contact with at work, were the boys.

They were rules though. It was only ever on Friday nights that they knew each other. If they passed in the street, something that didn’t happen very often due to Victoria’s self-imposed prison sentence, they just walked on by. Sometimes Victoria almost wished things were different.

There were times when she felt this pang of loneliness so strong that she considered owling the four of them and inviting them round. Only Regulus knew where she lived, and she knew it had to stay that way. Maybe trusting a Death Eater wasn’t the best idea, but she had a feeling that Regulus wouldn’t betray her. Or at least, he hadn’t yet.

She didn’t pretend that there was anything real between them. She figured Regulus did it for the same reason she did—to hold that loneliness at bay, even just for a little while. He may have seemed to have more ‘friends’ than her, but sometimes when no one else was looking, he’d send his look that made her realise how alone he felt. She knew the feeling too well to resist him.

That's how she'd gotten into this mess in the first place. Danny had always said that she was too trusting, it'd just taken her this long to figure it out for herself. She didn't know how to stop though, and maybe she didn't want to. Sometimes it was nice to have somewhere there, even if it was just for the night.

She shook the thought from her head and downed the last of her tea. She needed to get out of the house, get Regulus out of her head. She went back to her bedroom and threw on a pair of jeans and a top that lay unwashed on her floor. She grabbed her wand from her bedside table and made her way out of her apartment.

The air was cold, especially for mid September. It felt like winter had already arrived. Victoria considered going back upstairs for her coat, but she knew that she'd just stay up there and so she continued on, rubbing her hands up and down her arms in an attempt to keep warm.

She found herself in The Leaky Cauldron before long. Despite living in Muggle London, she had never explored the area—her trips outside usually consisted of travelling to the Ministry and to Diagon Alley. She wasn't nearly as adventurous as she'd been once. Nowadays, it was safer to stick to the places you knew otherwise you might find yourself in trouble - whether it be at the hands of Death Eaters or the opposing side. Victoria didn't particularly want anything to do with either group.

As she made her way through The Leaky Cauldron—that was particularly busy for a Saturday, especially after Hogwarts had started up again, she thought about her own Hogwarts days. It seemed so long ago now, though she'd only been graduated for two years. She could hardly remember what it felt like to pack up her things and get on the Hogwarts Express. She was so wrapped up in these thoughts that she didn't notice the man watching her from the other side of the room.

There was something weird about being in Diagon Alley during the day for her now. She was so used to passing through at night that she was surprised to see the shops bustling with witches and wizards. The way everyone was moving around it was almost impossible to tell that there was a war going on. Now and again, someone would whisper something to their companion or the look in someone's eye would change to fear as another person passed them. That was the unavoidable hint of the war.

Victoria wandered for the rest of the day, slipping in and out of shops as she pleased and stopping every now and again for a quick bite to eat. The day passed quickly, and before she knew it, it had turned colder and darker. With a sigh, she headed home - pausing in The Leaky Cauldron for a moment where she wished she'd had her fireplace approved for the Floo Network. It hadn't seemed important at the time, but now she regretted it.

The walk home seemed even longer because of it. Not only was it freezing, but she had the distinct impression that someone was following her but every time she turned around to check there would be no one there. She brushed it off, and quickened her pace.

The war did funny things to people's minds.

It was hardly a comforting thought, but it had slipped into Victoria's mind before she could stop it. Now it was only thing she could think of. A part inside of her wanted to pretend it wasn't true. She wanted to pretend that everything was right with the world, but she didn't have that childish ability anymore.

She'd almost reached her apartment building when something crashed behind her. There was a curse of 'you idiot!' that bought her to a stop. It was a man's voice - unfamiliar too, which only made her heart beat quicker. She risked a peak over her shoulder but she couldn't see anyone in the dark.

The street was quite apart from the usual London noises—sirens wailing in the distance, a loud, drunk laugh from someone. She focused on her building in the distance—at the most, it was maybe twenty metres away. If she ran quick enough, maybe she could make it before whoever was behind her caught up. She'd never been a great runner though.

She decided to risk it. She sprinted off, her feet pounding against the floor and her ragged breath make white puffs around her. At that moment she cursed herself for not keeping fit.

The people behind her followed—there'd been a couple of curse words when she'd set off, but now they were silent. Victoria could only hope that meant they were as out of shape as she was.

She'd just stepped up onto the first step that led to her apartment building when someone grabbed her from behind. She kicked and swung her arms around, but that didn't help her at all. Her mind was racing with possibilities and fears, and so she didn't even have time to form an escape plan in her mind.

It wouldn't have mattered though. She heard a second pair of footsteps behind her, and an out of breath voiced whispered, "Petrificus Totalus."

Then, she was still.

Authors Note: There we go - chapter two! I didn't mention this in my last authors note but I'm hoping to update at least every fortnight until University goes back next year. This isn't going to be a super long story so I hope I'll be able to get it finished by then. Thank you all for reading!

Chapter 3: Stupidity and Judgement
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Disclaimer: The OC’s and parts of the plot are all that belong to me. Everything else belongs to J.K Rowling, I do not claim ownership to it. Thank you for reading.

This beautiful chapter image was created by victus. at TDA.

When the world came back into focus around her the first thing she did was curse her own stupidity. What kind of person trusted a Death Eater? Let alone four of them.

She let out a groan, turned onto her side and lifted up her hand to shield her eyes from the bright light. Her prison room was significantly nicer than what she’d been expecting, though she supposed those arrogant purebloods had a reputation to uphold. Merlin knows what would happen if rumours started going around that not every room in the Malfoy Manor was perfect. Something like that would kill poor Lucius.

She highly doubted this was the Malfoy Manor anyway. It was grander than what Victoria was used to, but it didn’t strike her as being grand enough for the Malfoy’s. Maybe it was one of the boys’ places? She knew Evan, she paused for a moment, she knew Rosier lived in a fancy Manor but Wilkes and Avery lived in an apartment somewhere together. The Black’s lived in London, Grimmauld Place—even Victoria knew that. This place seemed far too bright for the London she was used to.

The walls were painted an odd shade—a mix between egg yellow and gold that made the rest of the pre-1900 furniture look even older. She thought it looked ridiculous, but the things were probably considered heirlooms. In her experience, the rich were into those kinds of things.

She was tied by one hand to a rustic old bed. She’d tried freeing herself with her other hand, but the rope was enchanted and so all her pulling was for nothing. From the bed she couldn’t see anything apart from the furniture of the room and the door. There was a window too, but it was oddly high up on the wall and so she couldn’t peak through it. She wasn’t sure if she even wanted to. This place seemed depressing enough, she didn’t care to see what English field she would be killed by.

She was oddly calm considering she well and truly understood what was going to happen in this house. She was more confused as to why they hadn’t already done it. They could have easily shot the killing curse at her on the street, but instead they had just knocked her out. Why? Was this some kind of torture method they had?

Oh Merlin, they were going to torture her for information. She tried pulling on the rope again, a new desperation for escape flooded her heart but it was still no use. She didn’t even know anything. She was a lowly secretary at the Ministry, she’d never heard anything even remotely important and if she had, she certainly hadn’t been listening.

She was going to die because she was too stubborn to let go of a couple of boys. She should have just stayed home. In that moment, she promised herself that she’d never leave her apartment again if she ever got out of this place alive. Maybe she’d just move back in with her parents and adopt thirteen cats and speak in riddles to anyone who dared to come across her.

She’d been so tied up in these thoughts that she hadn’t even noticed the door creak open until someone cleared their throat. Victoria snapped her head around, cursing the sharp pain this caused.

“You’re awake,” The voice said—a woman, much prettier than how Victoria pictured a Death Eater to look. “Are you feeling alright?”

“What does it matter?” Victoria cut back, hating the way her voice sounded, she cleared her throat and tried to sound less afraid, “You’re going to kill me anyway.”

The woman sighed, running her fingers through her dark hair, “I told them that sending Black to get you was a terrible idea. You poor thing, you’re probably half scared to death.”

“I knew it was Black,” She said coldly, looking the woman up and down, “I suppose you’re the infamous Madam Lestrange, then.”

The woman laughed, a considerably warmer laugh that what Victoria was expecting, “Oh Merlin,” The woman whispered, “You really are poor thing.”

Victoria turned her face towards the wall—she couldn’t stand the pity in the other woman’s eyes.

“You’ve got the wrong side, love,” The woman said, “I’m Emmeline Vance. We’re fighting against them.”

“Why am I here then?” Victoria blurted out.

“I’ll let one of the others explain that,” With that, Emmeline turned on her heel and Victoria was left alone once again with her thoughts.

At some point, it seemed that Victoria had drifted back off to sleep because the next time she opened her eyes, a red headed girl stood in her room—Lily Evans, they’d been in the same year at Hogwarts.

“You look different,” Lily said by way of greeting, “A lot paler than you used to be.” Victoria didn’t reply. “Em said you thought she was a Death Eater.”

“So Em has made me the laughing stock out there, has she?” She spat bitterly.

Lily looked taken aback, “You used to be sweet. What happened to you?”

“Life,” She responded dryly, “Not all of us got our Prince Charming’s.”

“No,” Lily agreed, almost solemnly, “Some of us get Death Eaters instead, evidently.”

“You can’t judge me,” Victoria half-whispered, “We do what we must do to stay alive.”

“You’ll get used to the judging, Drew,” Lily replied, almost venomously, “That’s what you’re here for after all.”

Victoria was left fuming as Lily closed the door — her footsteps disappearing quickly down a flight of stairs. She let out a sigh, only a few hours into captivity and she’d already made a fool of herself and driven away the only one who might have given her answers.

What did Lily mean that she was here to be judged? Why was she here at all? She figured it was something to do with Black. It wasn’t as if her meetings with the boys would have gone completely unnoticed — she’d always accepted that as a fact, but this? She was not expecting this. Whatever this was.

Maybe they were going to kill her instead? Maybe they’d torture her for information that she didn’t have. She and the boys had never spoken about their ‘work’, and it wasn’t as if she and Regulus had cuddle sessions where they decided exactly how many muggleborns he’d tortured the night before, or even earlier that day.

She was innocent in all of this.

Wasn’t she?

It turned out that the house full of people didn’t see it that way.

A particularly ruffled looking Remus Lupin had bought her downstairs. She was shocked to see him—not because she never imagined he would be there, after all wherever Potter and Black were Lupin and Pettigrew would never be far behind, but because he looked even worse off than he had in school.

His face was covered in more scars, Victoria had never understood where they’d come from in the first place. His clothes barely fit him, a sign that he’d lost even more weight since graduation and his hair was longer than she’d ever seen. She had almost wanted to wrap her arms around him when he let herself into her prison cell, after all they had been friends at school, but the uncomfortable look in his eyes kept her away. He was judging her.

Downstairs was worse. The living room was filled with people, some that Victoria knew, like James Potter and Peter Pettigrew, and others that she had never seen before. They all clearly knew who she was.

“Miss Drew,” Dumbledore said, considering the tension in the room, he sounded strangely joyful at Victoria’s presence, “I’m sorry we had to bring you here so unkindly, but we were inclined to believe that you wouldn’t come willingly.” Pettigrew snorted at this, but Victoria kept her eyes on Dumbledore. “It’s been a while, but I’m sure you remember your old peers —”

“Yes, but why am I here?” Victoria cut him off, resulting in a dark look from several members of the room.

Dumbledore’s eyes twinkled slightly, “Of course, my dear, I suspect no one has told you anything. It’s a Gryffindor trait, I must say—that fierce loyalty, but nevermind.”

“You’re one of them,” Pettigrew cut in, but he shrunk back when Potter sent him a stern look.

“Please, Mr Pettigrew, don’t get ahead of yourself,” Dumbledore replied, only turning his head slightly towards Pettigrew though he kept his eyes trained on Victoria. “People in this room have evidence to suggest that you are working for a dark wizard, most commonly referred to as He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named, that you are one of his followers—a Death Eater.” Eyes throughout the room darkened at this statement, someone even growled but Dumbledore waved them all off with a shake of his hand, “I don’t believe that you are Miss Drew. In fact, I think you just happen to be a very lost witch in this terrible war. I’m giving you the chance to change that.”


“Join us,” The corner of Dumbledore’s lip turned upwards slightly.

“And what would that entail?” Victoria asked, tilting her chin up to mask her fear and uncertainty.

“I believe you have a connection with some of the young men fighting for this cause.”

Perfect images of the boys popped into her head. She could see Wilkes—his cropped dirty blond hair and those hawk-like eyes. Avery—that smirk whenever he thought of a particularly horrible joke. Evan—the way his dark hair covered his eyes, the smell of cigarettes that clung to him. And finally, Regulus—that smile he sent her sometimes, the one that didn’t quite reach his eyes but made her weak in the knees anyway.

“You want me to turn them over,” Victoria whispered. She found it hard to speak with the sound of the boys’ laughs echoing in her head.

“No,” Dumbledore replied softly, “We want you to help us save them.”

Authors Note: So, long time no see! What’s it been? Four and a half months since I last posted a chapter? I’m really sorry about that, and honestly I didn’t even expect to continue this story but this hit me out of nowhere tonight and well, here’s chapter three!

I’m really happy with those this chapter turned out and I’m going to try and keep up some momentum so I can write the next chapter. I’ll hopefully she you all again very soon.

Chapter 4: Save Them
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Disclaimer: The OC’s and parts of the plot are all that belong to me. Everything else belongs to J.K Rowling, I do not claim ownership to it. Thank you for reading.

Beautiful chapter image by clowder of TDA.

Save them. Save a bunch of already Death Eaters. The idea was ridiculous. Evan had always said that Dumbledore was more than a little touched in the head. She’d always secretly disagreed with him, but now—signs seemed to indicate that he was right.

She wondered whether she was touched in the head too. She hadn’t been able to say anything downstairs. Instead, she just stared blankly at Dumbledore once he’d finished speaking. Remus had bought her back up to her prison, only this time she wasn’t tied to the bed.

Save them? Really?

Victoria shook her head. She liked the boys, she couldn’t lie about that, but she also knew them—she knew they couldn’t be saved. They were too far gone, and anyway, they didn’t want to be saved. They thought they were doing the ‘right’ thing, they believed in their cause. There was no way they’d change their minds.

They saw the world split in half. Mudbloods and mudblood lovers, and purebloods. There was nothing else. There would never be anything else for them.

Not for the first time, she wondered where they were, what they were doing. Had they even noticed she was gone? She didn’t even know what day it was. Had Friday already passed? Had they been worried when she didn’t turn up for their usual drink? Had Regulus been worried?

In all honesty, it wouldn’t have surprised her if the boys didn’t even care. She’d always known they didn’t value her company like she did theirs. They had families, friends, creepy snake-like leaders to tell them who to kill. They didn’t need pathetic little Victoria Drew.

But dear Merlin, did she need them.

That’s what had done it. That little thought, the realisation that she needed these boys to live. Ironically, it could be thing that would lead to her death.

“Do you understand how this works?” Remus asked, he’d leant over the table towards her, clearly having noticed the way she’d lost focus.

“I owl you whenever I notice or hear something that might help the Order,” She replied almost mechanically—they’d gone over this more times than she could count. “I use the codewords and codenames we’ve been through. You’re Moony.”

“And if anything goes wrong?” He asked, his face was softer when he asked this as if he’d really be upset if something was to happen to her. She wanted to laugh in his face.

“I owl you,” She replied instead, “And you’ll make sure everything is safe.”

He nodded once, “How are you feeling?”

“They don’t talk about him much,” She blurted out. She said that same sentence more times in the last few days than she could possibly count. For whatever reason, the Order didn’t care or maybe they didn’t believe her. They still went ahead with the whole thing.

“Just be careful, yeah?” Victoria nodded, “Alright, will you be alright to apparate home?”

“Of course,” He pushed himself out of his chair and gestured for her to do the same.

“You’re really brave, Victoria,” He said, he went to reach his hand over to her but she’d already turned on her heel and pushed her way through the Order headquarters. She didn’t stop moving, her eyes looking straight forward, until she finally reached the living room of her apartment.

Then everything went to shit.

She’d never been one to be blinded by anger, and yet that day it was like she’d become a monster. She pulled her boots off quickly and threw her at the wall. Books were flung across the room, the mug she’d left on the kitchen counter was smashed into tiny pieces that cut into her now bare feet.

She pulled at her hair. She clawed at her throat.

She was out of control.

“Quite the performance you’ve got going on here,” A voice interrupted. She dropped the awful vase that had been in her hands.

“Regulus?” She whispered, watching him carefully as he strode out of her room and over to her.

“Where’ve you been, Vic?” He asked, with every step closer to her, she stepped back another two until her back was pressed up against the wall. “Your feet are bleeding,” He said softly. She hadn’t noticed the stinging pain until he spoke. “Let me heal them,” She nodded once, intending to hobble over to the couch when suddenly Regulus had lifted her into his arms.

“I can walk, you know,” She said bitterly.

“Barely,” He replied with a roll of his eyes, “Now stop wriggling,” He said, laying her down on the couch. He sat down at the end of the couch, moving her legs into his lap.

“Thank you,” She whispered, as he started his work. He was surprisingly gentle for a Death Eater. Her mind reminded her that he was still Regulus—he’d always been gentle with her.

“So, what’s your answer?” He asked after they’d been silent for a while. He’d finished with her feet now, but rather than moving them away, he held onto them.

“That depends,” She raised an eyebrow, “What was your question?”

“Where’ve you been?” He repeated, his eyes were searching her. In that moment, she felt like he could see into her soul—past all the walls she put up, and the lies she told herself and everyone else. He could see Victoria. “I was worried about you.”

The moment smashed like someone had thrown a brick through a glass window. What was she supposed to tell him? Oh, I got captured by your older brother and forced to join the Order of the Phoenix to save you and the other boys and bring an end to You-Know-Who’s reign? Somehow she figured that wouldn’t go down well.

She was only freaking him out—she could tell by the way he was looking at her like she needed to be wrapped up in a blanket and sung a lullaby to. He squeezed her knee comfortingly, and shuffled up the couch to be closer to her. Not even an hour in, and she could already see the Order’s plan dissolving before her eyes.

So she did the only thing she knew how to do. She pulled on Regulus’s collar, and lowered his lips to her.

He didn’t question her after that.

Authors Note: I’m going to be completely honest with anyone reading this. I kind of gave up writing fanfiction for a while there. I got really caught up in OF, and I thought that there was any point doing this anymore. Then the other day I thought to myself, ‘You know what? I need something that is just pure fun to write’ and so here we are once again.

I don’t know how often I’ll update, but I am going to keep writing this story. I hope some of you will enjoy reading it.

Chapter 5: Visitors
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Disclaimer: The OC’s and parts of the plot are all that belong to me. Everything else belongs to J.K Rowling, I do not claim ownership to it. Thank you for reading.

Gorgeous CI by clowder of TDA.

Victoria woke up the next morning ready to go back to her usual routine. She shuffled herself over to the edge of the bed to check her clock. She let out a loud groan, and was trying to convince herself to swing her legs over the edge of her bed when an arm wrapped around her waist and pulled her back to the middle of the bed.

“Where are you going?” She found herself eye to eye with a sleepy, but cheeky Regulus.

“Shouldn’t you be back home?” She asked in reply.

He let out a chuckle, “Trying to get rid of me, Vic? And no, my parents are away for the next two weeks,” He pulled her closed again and buried his head in her shoulder, placing light kisses as he moved along, “I can spend all my time with you.” She smiled, shuffling herself down until she could comfortably rest her head on his chest. Both of them were asleep again in no time.

When she woke up again later—three hours later according to her clock, she found her bed empty. She pulled herself out of bed, trying to shake off her disappointment that Regulus had disappeared as usual. She tried to remind her that she didn’t own him. The two of them weren’t even dating, not really. She had no reason to be disappointed with him.

She was slowly making her way out to the kitchen for her morning cup of tea when she noticed Regulus crouched down in her living room. He stacking up a pile of books—ones she’d flung across her apartment the day before. “Morning,” He smirked over at her, levitating the books back into the bookshelf. He’d clearly woken up early enough to go back to his house and change into a navy blue sweater—he’d needed to after she practically tore his shirt off the night before.

“You didn’t have to clean up after me,” She said in reply, she watched him from the doorway of her bedroom for a moment.

“I figured if I did it then you couldn’t use it as a way of avoiding my questions,” He cut back. She’d stupidly thought that after last night that maybe he would have let the whole thing go. She was seriously starting to question whether she’d deserved to be a Ravenclaw at all. “Not that I didn’t enjoy last night,” He added with a smirk in her direction, “That doesn’t change the fact I’m worried about you though. I’ve never seen you like that before. So tell me, what’s happened?”

“It’s difficult to explain,” She let out a sigh. She meant to think of an excuse last night, but then they’d gotten a little carried away.

“Difficult?” He quirked one of his eyebrows. Yes, difficult as in it might just get me, you and everyone you know killed. Oh, and by the way, last night—that was great. Let’s do again sometime if we don’t die.

“It’s family stuff,” She ended up settling on.

“Vic,” He warned, “You know I understand family stuff better than anyone.”

“Do I?” The words came blurting out of Victoria’s mouth before she had the chance to think them through, “We’ve never really talked before. We just sleep together, and then you leave.”

He sent her a confused look, and then sighed, “I guess you’re right. Maybe we should change that?”

“What do you mean?” Her response was instantaneous. This was not going the way she thought it would at all.

“Well, I can’t really take you out for ice cream in Diagon Alley,” He started, “But you could come around to mine tonight and I’ll have Kreacher, that’s our house elf, cook us dinner.”

“You really know how to woo the ladies,” She replied dryly, though inside her heart was beating like mad.

He grinned, he crossed the room to her and wrapped her up in his arms, “Good thing I’m only trying to woo the one lady.”

“I thought he’d never leave,” A voice said, just as Victoria went to close her apartment door.

“Have you been here this whole time, Black?” She asked, as Sirius sauntered around the corner and pushed his way into her apartment. She checked to make sure Regulus wasn’t coming back before closing her door, and turning to look at him.

“You didn’t tell the Order you were screwing my little brother,” He said, his voice was light and teasing despite the bitterness in his words.

“I don’t see how it’s any of your business,” She replied, crossing her arms over her chest. She was painfully aware of the fact she was still wearing her skimpy pyjamas.

“I suppose so,” He shrugged his shoulders, “Though I’m sure Dumbledore is more than aware of it. I mean, it’s not as if you’re particularly quiet, is it? I could hear you through the walls. It’s a miracle your neighbours haven’t complained.”

“You’re disgusting,” She shot back, pursing her lips together, “What did you want anyway, Black? Lupin is my contact, not you.”

“Thought I’d welcome you to the Order properly,” He replied with a little smirk. It reminded her too much of Regulus—she ignored the jump in her stomach.

“You were plenty welcoming the other night,” She said, “Emmeline said it was you they sent to get me.”

“I couldn’t believe you actually,” He let out a little bark laugh, “I followed you all day, and not once did you realise I was there. That must be why Reg likes you so much—you’re too thick to notice anything around you.”

“Well, you’ve welcomed me,” She smiled sweetly, “Now you can buzz off.”

He threw his head back in laughter, “I can’t say this was the warm reception I was expecting.”

“Funny about that,” She said dryly, “What did you expect to happen?”

“I admit I was rather hoping for a welcome like the one you gave Reg,” The smirk was back.

“I wouldn’t touch you for all the galleons in the world,” She glared over at him.

“I wouldn’t bet on that,” He whispered, brushing up against her side and he let himself out of her apartment. She stood there frozen for a moment—half disgusted, half confused before she let out a loud groan, and slammed her apartment door closed.

Stupid Sirius Black.

Maybe this had been a stupid idea, and yet, her legs refused to move. She spared a glance over her shoulder and let out a loud sigh, raising her knuckles to knock the door. It flew open immediately.

“It’s about time,” Regulus said on the other side, pulling her inside from the cold, “I was starting to wonder whether you were ever going to knock.”

“You’ve been standing there this whole time?” She said, letting Regulus turn her around so he could take her coat off her shoulders.

“I was worried you wouldn’t turn up,” He replied, sounding a lot less confident than she’d ever heard him. “Come on, Kreacher’s got dinner waiting for us.”

“No wine and pre-dinner talk?” She half-teased as he led her through a dark corridor.

“Well, there’s was supposed to be but then somebody waited outside for half an hour,” He replied, he shot her a grin over his shoulder that made her go weak at the knees. She liked it more than anything when he smiled.

“I was nervous,” She whispered. She thought he wouldn’t be able to hear her, but his hand squeezed hers gently. The dining room wasn’t exactly what she’d been expecting. It was dark and grim, which seemed to fit right in with the rest of the house. It was also barely big enough to swing a cat in, and yet the Black’s were absurdly rich.

“What are you thinking?” Regulus asked, cutting through her thoughts. He dropped her hand and was now staring at her with a worried expression on his face.

“It’s smaller than I imagined.”

“What?” He furrowed his brows, “What did you expect? Gold plated chandeliers and crystal goblets?” He let out a laugh that stopped abruptly when he saw the expression on her face, “You were. Oh Merlin. I’m sorry to completely disappoint you.”

“I just figured,” She broke off, “Well, your family is loaded. I just assumed the whole place would be ridiculously decadent.”

“Oh, we save the decadence for upstairs,” He replied seriously, “With the severed house elf heads, and that sort of stuff.”

“You’re kidding,” She said instantly, her eyes widening.

“No, that’s real,” He replied with the shrug of his shoulders, “Don’t you know it’s an honour for a house elf to have their head cut off by their master when they’re too old for service?”

“That’s cruel,” She whispered, “Sorry, I—”

“No, I agree with you,” He shook his head suddenly, “Let’s not talk about that anymore,” He pulled out a seat for Victoria and helped her into it, even adding a little kiss to her hand as an extra flourish. “Now, Miss Drew, let me spoil you.”

She felt herself go to pieces. There was no helping her now.

Authors Note: Look at this—an update in a reasonable time period! I wasn’t originally going to post this for a few more days, but I’m off a short holiday/break tomorrow and I’m not sure I’ll have internet. I’ve already written the next chapter, and I’m going to post that the same time next week. Until then, I hope you all enjoyed this.

Chapter 6: This Is It
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Disclaimer: The OC’s and parts of the plot are all that belong to me. Everything else belongs to J.K Rowling, I do not claim ownership to it. Thank you for reading.

Look at this beautiful CI by clowder over at TDA.


I haven’t heard anything from you in a few days. Can you please send me an update on how you are?

I hope you’re safe,


Victoria threw the letter into her fireplace and sighed. She was already regretting her choice to help the Order. What had she been thinking agreeing in the first place? She wasn’t a spy—far from it. Besides, she was a Ravenclaw and they were neutral in these sorts of matters. Just like at Hogwarts, this was purely a Gryffindor vs. Slytherin fight. She should have never gotten involved.

More than that, she hated the codename Mona. It was her mother’s name, and therefore the Order had decided it wouldn’t be common knowledge. They said it would keep her safe, but really it all it did for now was remind her what was to come.

She’d lost her job. It turned out bosses generally didn’t appreciate their employees disappearing without notice for a few days, no matter how awful those employees happened to be. She couldn’t say she hadn’t seen it coming. She knew they’d been looking for a reason to fire her for months. Now they’d finally found one. As glad as she was to be out of that hellhole, it meant goodbye London, hello Birmingham.

She wondered how long she’d last back at her parents house. She’d moved out the second she could, and had promised herself to never wind up back there again. Her parents weren’t bad people. It was only that her mum was a bit of wet blanket, and her dad, well, he was a Muggle—he didn’t and wouldn’t understand the magical world. It would be like her teenage summers all over again. She’d rather crucio herself.

A part of her didn’t want to admit it, but she was also hesitant to leave Regulus behind. After the dinner at his house, the two of them had spent almost every free moment with one another. She wasn’t stupid enough to call it love, or to even consider it but it was something. It was something she hadn’t felt since Hogwarts. She wasn’t ready to give him up just yet, and she definitely wasn’t going to invite him up to Birmingham. Her dad still thought she was a baby in that department, and she planned to keep it that way. She couldn’t imagine her mum would be overly fond of a Black in her house, even if she’d never say it out loud. Just the thought of the disappointment on her parents’ faces made the idea seem even worse than before.

She sighed again. She’d have to write a letter back to Remus before he had a search party out for her—a search party that would mostly like include Sirius Black. At least if she moved back to Birmingham, she wouldn’t have to see that tosser anymore. Then again, she wouldn’t put it past him to drop in announced just to bug her.


All is fine. Nothing to report.


She scratched out her letter, and then winced slightly at how awful her handwriting had become. She hoped that Remus would be able to read it. If not, the Order might have some fun interpreting her letter. Maybe it would give them something to do other than kidnapping innocent young women.

“You two are looking cozy tonight,” Evan smirked, slipping into his usual seat beside Victoria. Neither she nor Regulus dignified him with an answer, though Victoria shuffled an inch away from Regulus’ embrace—that was as far as he’d let her go. “How’s the Ministry?” He asked with his usual mocking tone.

“I wouldn’t know,” She replied, Evan looked taken aback, “I got fired.”

“It’s about time,” Wilkes said with a laugh as he and Avery finally joined them, “We were taking bets on how much longer you’d last there.”

“Thanks for your overwhelming belief in me, boys,” She said dryly. She wasn’t in the mood to be teased and bantered with that night. She wanted to be back in her apartment, in bed, savouring the last few days she had of freedom.

“Someone’s feisty tonight,” Avery commented, sharing a look with the other two boys. Regulus refused to meet their eyes.

“She’s been getting even busier with Reg than usual,” Wilkes winked at him, and then again over at Victoria.

“I’d watch what you say, Braxston,” Regulus shot back, a dark expression on his face. An awkward silence fell over the group. While Regulus and Evan were almost always referred to as such, Wilkes and Avery were always referred to by their last names. Never Braxton and Lyndon. They all knew what it meant, even Victoria—she was his now, and the others were expected to respect that.

“Did you see the match on Sunday?” Avery said, breaking the silence and returning a sense of normalcy to the group. At least, to the boys.

Victoria sat silently as they droned on and on, wishing even more than before that she’d just stayed in bed. She couldn’t believe how stupid Regulus had just been. Did he not understand what he’d just done? She hazarded a look over at him. No, of course he didn’t. News like this got around quickly in pureblood circles. Before she knew it, she’d have Death Eaters on her doorsteps expecting her to join up. She was the girlfriend of Regulus Black, after all.

She stood up suddenly, before she even knew what she was doing. All four boys stared up at her as if she’d grown an extra head, or two.

“Victoria?” Evan said, raising an eyebrow in disbelief.

She stared at him for a minute, then suddenly her feet seemed to have a mind of their own as she found herself storming out of the bar and through Knockturn Alley at lightning speed. She could barely hear Regulus calling after her, and the sound of the boys trying to chase after her but she was gone, apparating in front of her building. She was up the stairs and inside in a matter of seconds.

“So you can apparate,” A voice said from the couch, Victoria ground her teeth together in reply, “I was just wondering, since you thought it would be a good idea to walk home the other night.”

“Shut up, Black,” She replied, rather than acknowledge his presence, she turned her attention to getting a glass of water without dropping the glass with her shaking hands.

“You are incredibly rude to me, you know?” He drawled, swinging his legs over the side of the couch and joining her in the kitchen. “You’re shaking,” He said, his voice softening immediately, “What’s happened?”

“It’s going to happen,” She replied, at his confused look she went on, “Death Eaters. Any day. Here.”

“You’ve been caught?” He asked, she couldn’t ignore the worry in his face despite how much she wanted too.

“No, but,” She took a deep breath, “Your brother just pretty much confirmed our relationship.”

“Hadn’t he already?” He asked, the cockiness in his voice had return, “Anyone who heard you two on the floor the other morning would’ve assumed so.”

“Not like that,” She replied, sending him a disgusted look, “He protected me in front of his friends. Word’ll get around pretty quickly.”

“And you figure Death Eaters are coming to kill you because you shagged my brother?” Sirius let out a laugh, “They may be inbred idiots, but even that this a little far fetched for them.”

“Not kill me,” She groaned, “Recruit me. Do you honestly think I could date a Black and not be expected to do something for their cause?”

Sirius’ face softened again, “We can keep you safe.”

“You don’t get it,” She replied, running her fingers through her hair, “I’m not a pureblood. My dad’s a Muggle.”

“I’m going to take a guess that my darling brother doesn’t know this little fact about you.”

“You’d be right.”

His face broke out into a grin, “So you have got guts, eh Vic?”

“Don’t call me that,” She replied, pursing her lips together, “I don’t see the funny side here.”

“Oh, I get it, only Reg gets to call you that, right?” He teased, “I suppose I’ll play along, but I’m going to need my own nickname for you.”

“How about Mona?” She offered dryly.

“No, that’s awful,” She couldn’t help but agree, “I’ve got it—Tori.”

“No,” Victoria shook her head, “Absolutely not.”

“Why not?” He pouted, “It’s a great nickname.”

“Fine,” She threw her hands up in surrender, “If you get to call me Tori, then I get to call you Siri.”

“You don’t play fair,” Sirius groaned.

“Take it or leave it, Black,” She could barely keep the proud smirk off her face.

“Whatever,” He sighed, Victoria’s grin grew wider, “I’ll be back in the morning.”

“Why?” She wrinkled her nose like he was a bad smell.

“I’ve got to keep you safe, right?” The grin had been well and truly wiped off her face by then. She stood frozen in her kitchen, and Sirius kissed her forehead and ruffled her hair on his way out of her door.

There—that proved it. There was definitely something very wrong with the Black brothers.

Authors Note: This is a day later than what I’d planned, but I ended up spending yesterday with my family, so this wasn’t really my top priority. The plan is to update this story weekly, though the days with differ depending on what I’ve got happening. Thank you all so much for reading this. I hope you’re enjoying the story, and I promise we’ll have some proper action very soon. I’ll see you next time hopefully!

Just before I do you all feel about chapter images? I've cast all the characters, but do you prefer imagining them for yourself or would you like to see how I imagine them?

Chapter 7: Miss Drew—the Destroyer
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Disclaimer: The OC’s and parts of the plot are all that belong to me. Everything else belongs to J.K Rowling, I do not claim ownership to it. Thank you for reading.

“I was hoping you wouldn’t actually turn up,” Victoria said as she opened her front door to see Sirius standing in front of her. For once, he didn’t have a snappy reply for her, instead he smiled slightly, looking up at her through the dripping strands of his hair. She stood frozen by the door as he made his way inside.

“Anything to report?” He asked, his voice sounded, well, more serious than she’d ever heard it. It sounded strange to her ears.

She started at him for a moment before shaking her head, “No, it’s been pretty quiet.”

“Emmeline says there’s no strange activity around here since last night,” He replied, walking over to her window and peeking down at the street through her curtains. She didn’t imagine that the Death Eaters would be standing on her street staring up at her apartment—they were much more subtle than that, surely.

“You’re having me watched,” She raised an eyebrow. The idea was a little comforting, but mostly it just freaked her out. The Order wouldn’t have her watched unless they thought something would happen.

“Would you prefer I left you alone to die?” He cut back, spinning on his heel to face her. He noticed how she jumped back at his words and reached out his hand as if to comfort her. She refused to look him in the eye. The words had shocked her. Sure, her thoughts had travelled to that dark place several times during the night but actually hearing the words spoken out loud was different. “I’m sorry,” Sirius whispered, his voice was soft. “I didn’t mean to say that. I won’t,” He broke off, “I won’t let you die. I promise.”

“It’s fine,” She replied, her voice sounded eerily cold even to herself, “I know it’s a possibility,” She paused, “If they find out what I’m doing, or even if they suddenly remember my dad’s a muggle. Well then, that’s it for me.”

“They won’t find out,” He replied instantly.

“They could.”

“You’ve been,” He trailed off, “You’ve doing this thing with Reg, whatever it is, for a few months. If they wanted to, they wouldn’t have done something by now.”

Victoria shook her head, “No, you don’t understand. You don’t know them. For them, half-bloods are just as bad.”

“No, you don’t understand,” He replied, “My brother cares about you. You said he protected you against his friends last night. He’s clearly already protecting you.”

“What do you mean?” She asked, her eyebrows furrowing, “Are you saying he already knows about me and just isn’t saying anything?” Sirius nodded once. “I don’t believe you.”

“You obviously care about him, so why couldn’t he feel the same about you?”

“This thing—it isn’t really about caring for each other,” She replied coldly.

“Then what is it about?” He asked, clearly not believing a word she said.

“Loneliness,” She replied, surprising both of them with her words. She’d never admitted how she felt out loud before. She’d been denying it to herself for months. She was though. She was incredibly lonely.

“There are other ways to fix that,” He replied. He don’t sound cruel or disgusted like she’d almost expected him to, instead he sounded like he understood her better than anyone.

“Like what?” She was almost scared to ask.

“Friends,” He replied, “I find friends really help.”

She let out a slightly bitter laugh, “I don’t have any of those. I’m not very good at making, or keeping them.”

“That’s where I’m here to help out,” He replied with a smile, “I’ll be your friend, and then my friends will become your friends.”

“Why are you doing this?” She asked, raising her eyebrows at him again.

A wicked smirk came across his face, “You’re cute.” She fought away the blush that threatened to colour her cheeks. “In fact, you’re too cute to be as sad as you are.”

“I won’t sleep with you,” She replied seriously with a fierce glare.

He laughed softly, “I don’t expect you too.” She smiled at the sincerity in his voice. “I won’t be entirely against it if you change your mind later on.”

She let out a groan. “And you were doing so well, Black.”

“Sirius,” He corrected, “We’re friends now after all.”

Victoria was getting sick of opening her door to the Black brothers. She was beginning to think she’d be more than happy to run away to a deserted island and never see either of them again. Maybe that way she could finally work on that long list of books she needed to read. Knowing her luck, they’d only follow her there.

It was honestly like the two of them had worked out a schedule. Sirius would come early in the morning, and Regulus in the afternoon. Then at night, she figured they were over fighting on their different sides of the same war.

They were more similar than they realised, not that Victoria ever dared mentioning it to either of them. Sirius would freeze up, and Regulus would ask too many questions about how exactly she knew Sirius. She wished they could talk, reconcile. It was sad, but she knew they never would.

It was Wednesday afternoon—Regulus lounged gracefully on her couch. The same couch she and Sirius had drunk tea on only a cup of hours before. If she squinted she could pretend he was still Sirius, and that Sirius was him. One Black brother would have been significantly easier to deal with. She didn’t know which she’d choose anymore. As it turned out, Sirius was actually sort of nice when he wanted to be, but she didn’t know whether she was still jaded by her anger towards Regulus.

He hadn’t bought up Friday night, and she was beginning to think she’d managed a spectacular escape when suddenly out of nowhere, he spoke up. “You ran off very quickly the other night,” His words sounded casual enough, but she could hear the confusion behind them. Still, she refused to crack under his stare. “What happened, Vic?”


“Don’t give me that bullshit. You’ve been acting all weird for a while now.” All the fake casualness was out of his voice now. His glare hardened.

She sighed, twisting her hands together. She tried to avoid his gaze, but he was determined to get a response out of her. “I just don’t understand what we’re doing anymore.”

“What do you mean?” His eyebrows furrowed together, lips slightly open, eyes dazed.

That was a good question. What did she mean? Not even she knew, but her mouth kept running like it had a mind of its own. “This wasn’t supposed to be anything serious.”

“And why not?” She didn’t know whether he sounded confused or angry, or both. She wanted to stop speaking, to take back what she’d already started to say but it was like something had taken over her body and won’t release its hold on her.

“We’re just using each other.”

“You’re using me?” She couldn’t look at him when he said those words. He sounded like a sad, scared little boy. Hadn’t he seen what she had? Did he actually care for her? No, it couldn’t be possible.

“Don’t. You know I am, just like you’re using me. We’re just trying to pretend that we’re not lonely and pathetic, but we are.” They were maybe the truest words she’d said ever said in life. At that moment, they certainly felt like it, even if Regulus could no longer look at her.

“So we’re doing this then?” He asked, his voice broke awkwardly in the middle of the sentence. She couldn’t respond. “Alright then,” He threw his hands up somewhat dramatically, “If this is what it is then maybe we should just stop it right now.” Her eyes flew to his reflexively. “Thanks Miss Drew,” He nodded to her once and swept out of her apartment before she even had the chance to blink.

What had she done? She’d lost him. She’d lost the only thing that was keeping her alive in this godforsaken war. What would they do to her now? She didn’t even know which they she was worried about—The Order or the Death Eaters? Both of them would have reasons to dispose of her know. She knew things about both of their organisations, but she was useless.

She half-hobbled over to the couch where Regulus had just been sitting and collapsed onto it, pulling her knees up to her chest. There she went again, royally screwed up everything in the way only she could.

Authors Note: And there we go, another chapter! I know this chapter is a little ‘meh’, but it’s leading up to some seriously intense stuff in the next chapter. The story is really going to pick up from here (or at least, I think so).

I hope you’ve been enjoying it so far, and I hope to see you next time!

Chapter 8: Prospective Cat Lady
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Disclaimer: The OC’s and parts of the plot are all that belong to me. Everything else belongs to J.K Rowling, I do not claim ownership to it. Thank you for reading.

If you ever consider breaking up with the one guy who made you feel alive, Victoria would advise against it.

In her experience, it led to drinking a little bit too much cheap wine and serious consideration about becoming a cat lady. In fact, she’d thought about that so much that it was actually starting to sound like a good idea. That was how she knew letting Regulus go had been a bad idea. He probably didn’t even like cats. Though, neither did she.

She just wanted him to turn up on her doorstep like his brother was becoming far too good at. Sirius had come every day for the past week and a half, but she’d squeaked through the door that she had the flu and he couldn’t possibly come in. Strangely, he seemed to buy it. Regulus wouldn’t have, which only made her want him more. She would have liked a nice cuddle.

Not that she would have gotten once in her current state. She was staring to smell pretty bad, and she was sure that if she were food, she probably would have started growing something by now. Still, a shower seemed like too much work—washing her hair and her body? That seemed like a work-out, and she did not do work-outs.

The problem was, she was starting to run out of food. More importantly, she was getting dangerously low on her tea supplies. Well, she had that funky tasting green tea left in her cupboard but she needed her strawberry and raspberry tea otherwise the apocalypse was sure to start.

She knew she couldn’t go out like she was now. It’d been so long since she’d brushed her hair that now it stayed in the shape of a bun even when she took her hair band out. Besides, she had a feeling anyone in the street would die instantly from the smell of her. Then again, maybe that wasn’t such a bad thing.

An intense craving for cinnamon donuts was what eventually got her in the shower. Cookies and cream ice cream was what got her to scrub the grime and tears off her skin. Chocolate was what ignited her desire to fight against the demon that was currently her hair. It was the tea that got her dressed and out the door.

At least she knew she couldn’t bump into Regulus in the supermarket. After all, he was a fancy pureblood and they had house elves to do their dirty work. How did house elves even shop? It wasn’t like they could just walk into Tesco’s and pick up a few supplies. She’d never seen anywhere in Diagon Alley, but she tended to stick to the same few stores. Maybe she could just jot down a letter to the Black’s elf and find out how he, or she (she couldn’t remember which), shopped. She snorted at the thought.

Dear the Black’s house elf, I was just wondering how you shopped. If I remember correctly, you were quite the ugly thing—don’t think you should really be seen in public. Oh, and please tell your young master that I’m an idiot and I almost wish he and his Death Eater buddies would just kill me now and put me out of my misery. Love and kisses, Victoria Drew.

Now wouldn’t that go down spectacularly?

She’d never personally met the woman, but she wondered if the infamous Mrs Black had heard about her yet. She sounded like the awful kind of women who’d personally maim Victoria for ruining her son and heir. Then again, a lowly little half-blood like her probably wasn’t even worth the trouble.

A couch from below her bought Victoria back to the present. A small muggle boy was looking up at her like she had the black plague or something. It was then she realised she’d been muttering to herself.

The cat lady idea just kept getting better and better.

She didn’t know what possessed her to march down to Knockturn Alley that night. She didn’t know what she expected. It wasn’t like the boys would welcome her in with opening arms and they’d all pretend she hadn’t screwed up this thing with Regulus. Maybe the others would, but he certainly wouldn’t. She didn’t think the boys were that fond of her anyway. Why would they be? They had nothing in common.

“Look who it is,” A voice drawled, just as she had decided to apparate home. “What are you doing here, gorgeous?” Wilkes asked, slipping into the seat beside her. She didn’t reply—she didn’t even know why she was here. “Heard about you and Reg.”

“Did you?” She asked dryly. She regretted her tone almost immediately. She imagined that these boys had killed people for less.

“He’s not here,” He replied, he pulled Victoria closer towards him and shot a dirty look at a man who was staring at her from across the room. “It’s probably a good thing you broke up with him, right?”

She nodded once, “Yeah, sure.” She wasn’t really paying attention to him anymore, or anyone else in the bar. All she could thing about was where Regulus might be. Was that the reason he hadn’t come to see her? Because he was away? Did he miss her like she missed him?

Wilkes was evidently still talking, though she had no idea what he was going on about now. “You remember Carrow? Alecto?” Victoria fought back a shudder. Alecto Carrow was a hard person to forget. She was brutal in school, a slightly younger version of Bellatrix Lestrange, only more bitch, slightly less psychotic. She’d persistently bullied Victoria all through their fourth and fifth years. She couldn’t say she was exactly a fan of Alecto Carrow. “She and Reg seem to be shacking up now.”

Now she just felt ill. There it was, the real reason Regulus hadn’t come to see her. He’d already moved on. Onto a fellow Death Eater no less, but Alecto Carrow—really? He could do much better than her. She figured he probably didn’t have many choices within the ranks. It seemed women weren’t overly welcome in Death Eaters circles. Go figure.

“Can you take me home?” She asked, turning her head to face Wilkes.

He looked slightly surprised by the turn of events. “To yours?”

“How about to yours?” He nodded, a grin spreading across his face. He stood up and offered her his arm, leading her out of the bar like he’d won the jackpot. Victoria couldn’t have cared less about what anyone thought, and so, she let him apparate her back to his flat.

“Avery isn’t home,” He said, as he unlocked his front door.

“Good,” She said, propelling herself forward until her lips were attached to Wilkes’. He didn’t pull away like she’d half expected him to. Instead, he lifted up her legs and carried her into his room. He was groaning and breathing heavily, moving his hands up and down her body. He pulled back to take off his shirt and then promptly reattached his lips to her neck. She couldn’t say that she wasn’t enjoying it, he certainly wasn’t the worst snogger in the world. It’s just that her attention was elsewhere. He didn’t seem to realise or care.

She was starting to think of cats again. It was better than thinking about Regulus.

The regret came down heavy in the morning. For once, she was the one out of bed and gone before the other woke up. The feeling wasn’t as great as she’d expected it to be.

She had a pounding headache, and her entire body felt like it was on fire. In that moment she decided to swear off boys and sex for the rest of her life. It seemed to just get her in more and more trouble. Wilkes, really? She wanted to smash her own head in. How could be stupid enough to do that last night? Now she’d slept with two Death Eaters. She might as well just have hit up Avery and Evan and get herself the set.

Why couldn’t she have fallen in with some nice Order boys after school finished? She had to admit, Remus wouldn’t have been that much of a struggle. Maybe she could have even shacked up with Sirius, even if the thought kind of made her want to vomit.

“You’re looking spectacular this morning.” Great, it was the devil himself standing on her doorstep. “No more flu?”

“Shove off Black,” She grumbled, sticking her key in the door and pushing her way inside. She tried to stop Sirius from coming in, but he was much stronger than her.

“How’s Reg?” He asked with a smirk taking in her appearance, in particular, the bites on her neck. She didn’t bother to blush.

“Wouldn’t know.”

“What?” The smirk dropped off his face in an instant. “What do you mean? Where have you been?”

“I dumped him,” She replied emotionlessly. All she really wanted to do was getting in the shower, into her pajamas and then cry over her stupid decisions into a bowl of ice cream for a few hours.

“When? Last night?” He asked, he grabbed hold of Victoria’s hand gently and led her over to the couch.

“No, almost two weeks ago.”

His mouth dropped open, “Where have you been?”

She hated the way he was looking at her—like she was a baby bird he had to save or something. Maybe that was what led her to confess. “Wilkes’. I’ve been securing my new Death Eater informant.”

Sirius stared at her blankly for a moment. “Are you insane?” He finally managed to spit out, his hands flying immediately to his hair as he started pulling on the strands.

“Careful, you’ll pull it out and you wouldn’t be an attractive bald man,” She said simply, earning her a disgusted look from Sirius.

“Do you even realise how stupid you’ve been? Do you see what you’ve done?” He yelled, burying his face in his hands.

“Don’t talk to me like that,” She spat back.

“Now you are going to get yourself killed,” He said. He still yelled it, but the words seemed softer and more worried than before. “Why wouldn’t you just leave it alone, Vic? I could have protected you.”

“Maybe I didn’t want your protection,” She yelled back, “Maybe I’m sick of protection from the Black brothers. Maybe I’m sick of everything. Maybe I just want this all to end.”

“It’s a war, Drew,” He practically whispered the words, “It’s not all about what you want.”

“You know what I do want, Black?” She answered, leaping off the couch, “You to kindly fuck off.”

“It would be my pleasure.”

Her apartment looked strangely big with all of her furniture gone—she didn’t like it at all. All her furniture had sold for some much needed funds. All of her clothes and books had been stuffed into her old Hogwarts trunk—it was almost impossible to lift, but she managed to get it down the stairs and only seriously feared for her life five times. She knew she’d regretted it more when it came to getting down the steps at her nearest tube stop. She had to change again at London Euston to get her train up to Birmingham.

Her parents had been very excited when she told them she was coming back. Like ridiculously excited. She could almost see her mother dancing from the way she slanted her handwriting. Her dad had even added extra x’s at the end of his section—there hadn’t been any x’s since she’d moved to London.

That’d only been two days ago. Considering she didn’t have any friends or a job, she didn’t have any loose ends to tie up in London. She would have been on her way yesterday, but she didn’t fancy paying an extra eight pounds for the same train. She could use those extra pounds to save up for her own place one day. She didn’t plan to ever come back to London, but eventually, she’d like to move out of her parent’s house again, even if it was just somewhere in Birmingham. Maybe she could try her hand at the muggle thing since she was such an awful excuse for a witch. Her dad would love that.

Maybe Birmingham wouldn’t be so bad after all. She hadn’t completely hated it when she’d lived there before Hogwarts, and it wasn’t like she could blame the city for that. There wasn’t a place on earth that could stand up to Hogwarts. Besides, in Birmingham, there was no Knockturn Alley, no bars, and no pureblood boys to get mixed up with. It sounded like a much safer city for her.

If only she could survive without murdering her parents.

Authors Note: This is the longest chapter in the story so far—isn’t that exciting? So quite a bit happened in this chapter, let me know what you’re thinking about it all. I don’t really have anything else to say here. I hope you enjoyed the chapter, and I’ll see you next week with chapter nine!

Chapter 9: Back to Black
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Disclaimer: The OC’s and parts of the plot are all that belong to me. Everything else belongs to J.K Rowling, I do not claim ownership to it. Thank you for reading.

Victoria’s bedroom door was nudged open, the light from the streaming right into her face. She rolled over and faced the wall.

“Darling?” Her mother’s voice whispered from the doorway. She didn’t wait for Victoria’s reply before she walked in. The usual cup of tea was placed on her bedside table, and the bed shifted as Mona sat down. “It’s almost noon, darling. Are you feeling alright?” She groaned in reply. “Honey, I’m really worried about you. You’ve been different since you came home. Tell me what happened in London. Why’d you come back?”

“I lost my job remember?” She grumbled, wrapping her arms around herself.

“That’s not it, honey,” She replied. “You hated your job. You were probably happy to see it go. You were too good for them anyway. It’s something else.”

“It’s nothing.”

“I’d wager anything that that this is about a boy.” She replied. Victoria could practically hear the twinkle in her mum’s eyes. This was her dream, after all, a nice boy for her ‘beautiful’ daughter.

“There’s no boy, mum,” She replied firmly. No boy that still wanted her, anyway.

“Don’t be silly, Tori. Of course there’s a boy.” Her mum just kept pushing today, didn’t she? “And I daresay, this boy broke your heart.”

“Maybe I broke his,” She grumbled back.

“Then you can fix it.” The optimism in her mother’s voice almost made her tear up.

“Maybe it’s not worth fixing,” She replied sadly.

“Whatever happened, or didn’t happen, make sure you do the right thing for you. If you don’t think it’s worth fixing, then don’t give in.” Her mum sighed, and rubbed Victoria’s shoulder. “You need to look after yourself, Tori.”

“I know, mum,” She whispered, “I’m trying.” She buried her head back into her pillow, and pulled her blanket tighter around her shoulders. Her mum left the room a few seconds later.

“Tori, there’s a boy downstairs for you,” She whispered as if were some big secret. She supposed if her dad was at home, then it probably was supposed to be.

“Don’t joke about these kinds of things, mum,” Victoria replied dryly, not looking up from her book.

“Victoria, I’m serious,” She whispered furiously. “Can you please put some trousers on and come downstairs? Don’t leave the poor boy waiting down there.”

She groaned once her mother had left the room. All she wanted to do was sit in bed and read without being restricted by trousers or the need to brush her hair. If this was another one of her mum’s set ups, then she was just going to move into the pub down the road. At least there she wouldn’t be expected to do completely unnecessary tasks. She managed to find a pair of reasonably clean looking trousers on her floor and pulled them on. They smelt kind of weird, but then again that might have just been her.

What if this was a trap? What if this was how she died? She stopped at the top of the stairs and contemplated this idea for a moment. In all honesty, she was starting to not care as to whether she made it another day. At least this way she’d probably get in the newspaper.

‘Stupid girl gets killed by Death Eater in her own house. Also: her hair looks shoddy.’

Well, it’d be memorable at least. By the time she reached the bottom of the stairs she was starting to doubt that getting an amazing headline like that in the newspaper wouldn’t be worth actually dying for.

“I don’t know what’s taking her so long,” She could hear her mother say from the living room. She rolled her eyes, and quickly walked over.

“I’m here, mum,” She said, smiling widely at her mum. She turned to look at this mysterious ‘boy’. Really, she should’ve known. There were only two possible ‘boys’ that would ever come after her. Sirius, and Regulus—and there he stood, looking immaculate as ever in a suit. Her mum was probably having an inner panic attack. She’d always wanted Victoria to have a ‘gentlemen’, whatever that meant.

“Do you need anything dears?” Mona asked, looking between the two of them with a big grin on her face. Victoria resisted the urge to roll her eyes—this was probably the best thing that had ever happened in her mum’s eyes.

“We’re fine, thank you Mrs Drew,” Regulus replied pleasantly, ever the charmer.

“Alright, I’ll be outside if you need me,” She practically skipped out of the room. Victoria wanted to scream for her to come back. If her only her mum knew that Regulus was a Death Eater, then she wouldn’t be so quick to leave her only daughter behind with one. She decided then that if she survived this, she’d tell her mum everything from now on.

“Vic,” Regulus said in an almost whisper.

She cleared her throat. “You’re looking good.”

“Are you kidding me?” His jaw was set angrily.

She ignored the annoyed look on his face. “How’s Alecto? Keeping you up at night?”

“What are you talking about?” He asked, his eyebrows raised. “What does Alecto have to do with anything?”

“I just thought, since you’re,” She trailed off.

“Since I’m what?” He asked. She stayed silent, and stared at her feet—she hadn’t realised before but she was wearing odd socks. She really needed to go out and buy some matching pairs. The odd sock thing wasn’t cute pass the age of ten. “Since I’m what, Victoria?”

She stared up at him and shrugged her shoulders. “I just heard, things, you know?”

“About me?” He asked, now even he looked uncomfortable. “You were the one who told me to leave.” She pursed her lips together in an attempt to stop herself from blurting out something stupid. “I didn’t want to go.”

She stared up at him in shock. “Why are you here?” She asked, after she regained the ability to talk.

“I needed to talk to you,” He replied.

“Go on then, talk.”

“The boys all thought you were daft, you know,” He started, pausing briefly when Victoria scoffed loudly. “But I knew you weren’t. You’re much smarter than the rest of us. You’re just lost.”

“And that’s why you messed around with me, right? You thought it would be fun.” She asked in a sugary sweet tone.

“No,” He replied, ignoring her bitterness. “I liked you because you saw me. I wasn’t Sirius’s little brother, or a Death Eater with you. I was just Regulus.” He let out a loud sigh, “I thought we were good together, Vic.”

“It was never going to work,” She replied, focusing on a mark on the wall just beside Regulus’ head. “You’re a Death Eater. I’m nothing.”

“You’re not nothing,” He replied fiercely. She could feel the hairs on the back of her neck. He turned her face towards him with a gentle push of her chin. “You’re incredibly brave you know. I don’t know anyone who would hang out with suspected Death Eaters, just for one person.”

“That or incredibly stupid,” She replied dryly.

“That doesn’t matter,” He said. “The point is, you kept coming to those Friday night meetings for me. You can’t say there isn’t anything between us.”

“You know it couldn’t work,” She replied. “We can’t even be seen together in public. What kind of relationship is that?”

“A private one.”

“You’re here,” She said, “Which means you can see it. I’m not a pureblood, Reg.”

“Maybe I don’t care,” He replied instantly.

“Maybe you’re crazy,” She countered.

“Maybe I am.” He took a few steps closer to her.

“Maybe this’ll go up in flames. Maybe I’ll get killed. Maybe you will.” She said, her voice getting more and more desperate with every step Regulus took towards her.

“Maybe you should shut up so I can kiss you,” He smirked down at her, before his lips down to her.

“Maybe,” She whispered just before their lips made contact. She couldn’t argue that this didn’t feel right, because it felt like the best thing in the world to her. Everything suddenly seemed so much brighter, maybe even blindingly so. She pulled away first, and rested her forehead against his.

“When are you going to come back to London?” He whispered, his lips almost covering hers again.

She chuckled softly. “My parents will kill you for asking that.”

“It’d be worth it,” He replied with a little smile.

She shook her head, and sighed. “There’s no way I could afford it, and I can’t ask my parents to pay for me again. They’d never go for it.”

“Maybe, I could,” He started, but she cut him off with a look.

“I’m not taking money off you either,” She replied firmly. “I’ll just have to find myself a new job, and save.”

“Does that mean I’ll have to come and visit you all the way up here?” He asked with raised eyebrows.

“If you want to see me at all then yes.” He sighed, but didn’t say anything else. “I don’t think I should go to the Friday night things anymore.”

“Of course not,” He agreed. “It was a stupid idea in the first place. I could have got you hurt, or worse.”

“The boys will still remember be though,” She said casually.

“They won’t say anything.” He replied. She wasn’t entirely sure she agreed with that. For all she knew, Wilkes could be going around telling everyone that they’d slept together. For all she knew, The Dark Lord already had her name down on a list. The question is—was it the recruit or kill list? Both seemed like they were going to end the same way.


I’m sorry that I’ve been such an idiot for the entire length of our friendship so far—I promise I’m working on that. I want to move back to London, but I don’t how to do it. I was hoping that you, and Moony, with all your worldly knowledge might be able to help me out somehow.

Again, I’m sorry.



How nice it is to hear your voice again. Okay, so that doesn’t strictly work but just pretend I’m leaning against a doorway as I say that. I’m glad that you can admit your idiocy. Flower tells me that I can’t say that to you, but I know you’ll appreciate it.

As for the London thing, well I think I can help you out. As you know, I’ve been on this Earth a lot longer than you and I happen to have many more connections with important people. What I’m saying is, I got you a job. Okay, so I didn’t exactly get you one, someone else did but I’m the one who’s telling you so really, I’m the winner here. As for an apartment—that didn’t go so well. Come by HQ soon, and we can discuss an idea I have.


Standing out the front of the Order’s headquarters, she started to wonder whether this was such a great idea after all. What had possessed her to even write to Sirius of all people? She refused to expect any help from her parents, or boyfriend (was he her boyfriend?) but she practically begged help from someone she barely knew. She really need to work on her logic when it came to situations like this.

Maybe it wasn’t too late to turn around? “Mona,” A voice called suddenly from the doorway, causing Victoria to jump almost a mile in the year.

“Moony,” She replied with a weak smile. He gestured for her to come in. She bit down on her bottom lip, and weighed out the options in her head for a minute. She sighed, and slid into the front door.

“How are you?” Remus asked with a warm smile.

“I’m okay, how are you?”

“Good.” He smiled again. “Sirius is in the back room. I warn you, he’s a little overjoyed that you decided to contact him,” He paused, “Us, again.” He corrected himself.

“What do you mean?” She asked, furrowing her eyebrows.

“He was worried sick about you,” He replied. “He wouldn’t tell any of us what had happened but he was obsessed with watching his brother. More obsessed than usual, that is. It’s nice that you’re back. He was starting to drive us all up the wall.”

“Tell me about this job,” She said, trying to break the awkwardness that followed Remus’ little speech. “And who found it for me.”

“Well, it’s in Flourish and Blotts,” He started, smiling at the excited grin Victoria gave him. “And one of our Order members found it for you. Marlene McKinnon, you might remember her from school?”

She shook her head. “Is she here today? I want to thank her.”

“Yeah, I think she is,” He nodded. “You need to see Sirius first though, before he accidentally burns down the whole place or something.”

“He’s that happy to see me?” She asked, eyebrows raised.

“Oh you have no idea,” James said, popping his head around the corner of a door. “Thank Merlin you’re here though. I was going to dress up as you, and try to convince him you were here if you took any longer.”

“Yes, thank Merlin she’s here,” Remus said, scrunching up his nose at the idea of his best mate in a dress. James just didn’t have the legs to pull it off.

“Hey, Padfoot,” James yelled down the hallway, “She’s here.”

There was a clatter of what sounded like several things falling over, and the occasional cuss word groaned out before Sirius finally appeared from one of the doors down the hallway. He grinned at Victoria, and gestured for her to follow him. Remus and James shared a knowing look behind her back.

“Good to see you back,” He said when she finally reached him. He placed his hand on her lower back and guided her into an empty room. “This is where you say something along the lines of how much you’ve missed me.” He offered when she stayed silent.

“You said you had an idea about the apartment situation,” She said, taking one of the seats.

“Straight to business then,” He muttered, taking the other seat. “I was thinking maybe you could come stay with me until you saved enough money to find your own place.” He said with a weird look in his eyes that she couldn’t place.

“I don’t see how that would work,” She said, furrowing her eyebrows. “Reg can’t know that we know each other. It’d completely ruin everything.”

“Reg?” He asked in confusion. “Don’t tell me you’re back with him.”

“What do you mean?” She asked, confused. “I thought you’d be happy about it. It means you lot still have an informant.”

“You thought I’d be?” He repeated in disbelief, “Happy? What?” He muttered to himself. “Where are you going to stay?

“I’ll find somewhere else,” She shrugged. “Now, can you tell me where Marlene McKinnon is?”

“Down the hall,” He mumbled, staring blankly at the wall behind her. She offered him a smile, and left him behind in the room to whatever he was thinking about. She didn’t think she’d ever understand him.

As it turned out, she did remember Marlene McKinnon from school. She was a hard person to forget. She had the most striking features that all the girls had been jealous of at Hogwarts. In particular, she had these eyes that made you feel as if she were looking into your soul. The boys had loved that.

“You got me a job?” Victoria asked, taking the seat across from Marlene. She was flipping through some sort of file. Unlike anyone else in the Order, she didn’t close it when she noticed Victoria sitting across from her, “Why? We’ve never even spoken.”

“You may have got caught up on the wrong side, but you seem like an alright person,” Marlene replied, before a smirk crossed her face. “Besides, I think Black has a thing for you. He was miserable when you were gone. It was actually kind of pathetic.”

Victoria rolled her eyes, “We’re only friends.” If they were even that.

“Right.” Marlene was still smirking at her.

“I’m dating his brother.” She said firmly.

Marlene didn’t even bat an eyelid at her confession. She got the distinct impression that this girl knew more than she’d ever let on. “Never stopped him before.” She smirked again. “Just look out for yourself alright. One Black brother is enough trouble, but two?” She let out a short laugh. “Good luck.”

Authors Note: I know it’s been a little while, but with NaNo going on, I’ve been focusing on a new original novel. I’ve almost made 50k, so I’ll be back to updating this more regularly soon. Just a quick thank you to Amanda for kicking me back into gear!

Chapter 10: Flourish and Blotts
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Disclaimer: The OC’s and parts of the plot are all that belong to me. Everything else belongs to J.K Rowling, I do not claim ownership to it. Thank you for reading.

“You must be Miss Drew,” A man appeared from behind the counter, almost giving Victoria a heart attack. He was only a small man, but he sure knew how to get himself noticed. “I’m Mr Townes, the owner of the store.”

“Of course,” She smiled nervously, “It’s nice to meet you, Mr Townes.”

“Marlene said you used to work in the Ministry,” He said, gesturing for her to follow him through the store. “I’m sorry to tell you that this job will involve a lot more standing around and doing nothing.” She wasn’t sure if that were even possible considering what she’d been doing at the Ministry.

“What do you mean?” She asked, eyebrows furrowed.

“Well, when we’re not selling books for the school year, I’m afraid we’re rather slow here.” He sighed. “There’s a lot of re-stacking and organising to be done every day—some of the books like to move themselves around. Otherwise, I’d suggest you start looking for a few books you might be interested in reading. Customers always appreciate a good recommendation. Any questions?”

“Where do you want me to start?” She asked with a smile.

He grinned at her. “How about you just have a look around today? Get used to where all the different genres are in the store. If a customer comes in, then come back to the till and I’ll show you how it works.”

“Thank you, Mr Townes.” She said, the shop manager sent her a puzzled look. “This job is really important to me. I promise I’ll do my absolute best.”

He smiled brightly at her. “A passion for books is the only thing you need to succeed here. I’m sure you’ll be fine, Miss Drew.”

She smiled at him again. He disappeared back off to whatever he’d been doing before she got in, and she started her way through the sections of the shop. She knew the basic layout of the shop, after all she bought all of her books for Hogwarts here. Her favourite class had always been Ancient Runes, and so she knew her way around that section the best. It seemed like as good a place as any to start. She already had a few books on her mental to-be-read list that she had just never had the chance, or the money, to pick up. She had to admit, she was maybe just a little too excited to have the chance to read some of these books. It’d give her something to do at least when she wasn’t working.

After all, the only other important thing in her life was Regulus. They hadn’t exactly discussed how this round of their relationship was going to work. The only thing they’d agreed on was that she wouldn’t be attending the Friday night drinks anymore. She was honestly relieved. In fact, she was more than happy to never face Wilkes again, or the other two really. She could spend her Fridays reading now.

An hour later, she was surrounded by a pile of books when the doorbell chimed. She waited while the customer walked around, and sprung to her feet when she heard Townes ringing up the register. He smiled at her when she joined him. She watched his movements carefully as he noted down the books the customer was purchasing, every now and again he paused to make a comment to her or to the elderly man. All in all, the whole thing seemed pretty simple.

For the first time in forever, Victoria was actually feeling good about her life. It turned out to be quite the strange feeling.

She stood there and watched him get ready. It felt strange to not be getting ready herself, after all, it was Friday night. She knew she couldn’t risk going out tonight, not with Regulus, and if she wasn’t with him then she didn’t really want to go anywhere. Even if it hadn’t been extremely dangerous, there was no way she could face Wilkes. For all she knew, he could be waiting to tell Regulus everything tonight. The thought terrified her. She wasn’t ready to lose him after she’d just gotten him back.

“Maybe I should stay in,” Regulus said, breaking her out of her reverie. She furrowed her eyebrows. “It’s not going to be any fun without you there anyway. You’re the only reason I ever went. I don’t even like firewhisky.”

Victoria let out a short laugh, and wrapped her arms around Regulus. “You know you have to turn up. They’ll suspect something if you don’t.”

“I hate it when you become all responsible on me,” He groaned, turning around so he could bury his face in the crook of her neck. He kissed her softly.

“Just go, stay and hour or two and then come home,” She replied, grinning as he started to leave a trail of kisses up her neck.

“Am I staying over tonight then?”

She punched him lightly in the arm. “You can’t keep me up all night though. I have to be up early in the morning for work.”

He drew away from her. “Work, huh? You never mentioned that you found somewhere.”

She blushed slightly. “It’s just a part-time thing at Flourish and Blotts. There’s not a lot of money in it.”

“But you get to work all day with books,” He finished off her sentence for her. She blushed slightly. Sometimes she forgot how well he knew her. “So, you absolutely love it then?” She nodded. “Soon enough I’m going to be fighting for your time with a bookshop, aren’t I?”

“It’s a better job than being the secretary to some stuck-up Ministry worker,” She answered as calmly as she could.

“I’m proud of you, Vic,” He kissed the top of her head, and then sighed. “I wish I could stay in and celebrate with you.”

“But you have to go keep the suspicions off you, and me.”

He groaned again. “When did our lives get so complicated?”

She couldn’t help but laugh again. “You’re delusional if you think our lives have been anything but complicated since we met.”

“I wish I could argue with you on that,” He replied sadly.

“I wish you could too.”

Saturday mornings had never been a particular favourite of Victoria’s, but she was learning to appreciate them more and more. She couldn’t pretend that she didn’t love the feeling of waking up next to Regulus, but even going to work turned out to be not that bad. In fact, she kind of loved it.

“You’re looking particularly cheerful for this hour of the day.”

She almost knocked herself out on a stack of books as she turned around to the voice. “Marlene?”

“The job’s alright then?” Marlene asked, flipping some of her blonde hair over her shoulder. She looked so casual, yet glamorous, as she did it that Victoria couldn’t help but feel a little jealous. If she tried that all she’d end up with was a mouthful of hair—that’s why she usually kept it tied back.

“It’s been excellent,” She replied. She took a few books off the top of the pile she’d almost bumped into, and started to sort them. Mr Townes was convinced that some sort of poltergeist was making Flourish and Blotts his or her home, and was constantly disturbing the books. She didn’t have the heart to tell him that it was his muddled brain that was causing the chaos. “Thank you for recommending me for the job.”

She beamed. “You’re very welcome.”

“Was there something you were looking for?” She asked after the two of them had been silent for a moment.

“No, nothing,” Marlene shrugged her shoulders. “I just thought I’d come by and see how you were doing.” They were silent again. “Actually, Black wanted to come with me but I thought you’d prefer if he didn’t.”

“Did you use those exact words with him?” Victoria asked, raising one eyebrow.

She smirked. “Of course I did.”

“It’ll be good for him,” She nodded once, making a face at a particularly badly designed book cover.

“From what I hear, you don’t exactly hold back with him either.” Marlene let out a throaty laugh. “I hope this doesn’t mean he’s going to fall for me now.”

Victoria rolled her eyes. “We’re not like that. We’re not even friends.”

“You don’t have to be friends to be like that.” Marlene said dryly. She picked a book off the top of one of the piles, and turned it over in her hands.

“What makes you think we’d ever be like that?” She asked, scrunching her nose slightly. She could barely stand more than a couple of minutes with Sirius before she wanted to knock herself out, she didn’t even want to imagine spending the same amount of time with him as she did with Regulus.

“Because he’s Sirius Black,” She stated blankly. “He always gets what he wants, and right now—that’s you.”

“I’d rather facing the killing curse,” Victoria replied with a sigh.

Marlene let out another laugh. “I can’t wait to tell him that.”

“Feel free to jazz it up a little if you think it’ll get him to leave me alone.” She pulled her wand out and levitated each stack of books to their designated spot one by one.

“You’re really not into him.” Marlene said in amazement.

Victoria shot her look. “It took you that long to figure that out?”

“You’re going to be an interesting addition to our group.”

Judging by the almost wicked grin on Marlene’s face, Victoria started to worry whether the whole thing was a good idea or not.

Author’s Note: I know what you’re thinking…is this for real? Did Ely actually finally upload another chapter? I know it’s been a while, but I was really unwell through December and for most of January, and writing was just not an option. I know this wasn’t the best chapter either, but the next one is going to really kick off. I won’t make any promises as to when that’ll be up, but the wait won’t be as long as it was for this chapter. Thank you all so much for reading.

Chapter 11: Between The Stacks
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Disclaimer: The OC’s and parts of the plot are all that belong to me. Everything else belongs to J.K Rowling, I do not claim ownership to it. Thank you for reading.

She’d really been an idiot to think that she could avoid one place, and suddenly be free from those who wanted to harm her. Now she was going to die for her stupidity.

Or at least, that’s what she thought would happen when Evan walked through the doors of Flourish and Blotts. She really should have been at the till, waiting to serving any customers that might walk in, but once sight of his perfectly styled dark hair and she’d disappeared into the storeroom as quick as lightning. Mr Townes was out there now, completely oblivious to the fact that the only customer in the store was a Death Eater.

She placed herself right by the door. From there she could see Evan almost anywhere in the store, and would hear anything he’d say to Townes. He wouldn’t be able to see her though, unless he went looking. Maybe that’s why he was here.

A sharp pain ran up her arm, causing her to let out a little gasp. She was terrified for a moment that he’d hear her, but he was staring intently at the book in his hands. She couldn’t see the title, but she could imagine what sort of book it was. Townes didn’t sell anything explicit about the Dark Arts, but there was always the chance something had slipped through years before. If anyone could find that kind of book, it would be Evan Rosier.

It felt like hours, sitting there and watching him stare at this one book. She could tell that even Townes was feeling a bit uneasy by the way he kept glancing over to that corner of the shop. Evan seemed oblivious to the two sets of eyes that watched him.

She thought she was going to go mad. Maybe she already was, considering the fact she wished desperately that he would do something. She knew she’d reached that point when she actually wished for him to attack her. As it turned out, lying in wait seemed a lot more painful than an actual attack. If she was going to die today, she’d prefer that it was a nice quick affair.

She jolted slightly, almost bringing a stack of books crashing down on her, when Evan suddenly moved towards the counter. She managed to right herself in time to hear what he said to Townes, or rather, the lack of words. It wasn’t that surprising, Evan never spoke to anyone he believed to be beneath him, unless it was to remind them of that fact. It wasn’t until he handed over the few galleons he owned that she noticed something was wrong.

His hand shook, only very slightly, but it was strange enough for someone like him who never got anxious or stressed over anything. It might have been the trick of the light, but she swore she could see something red on his hand. She fought back a scoff—imagine a Death Eater wearing Gryffindor colours? Oh, the boys would have a field day with that. He was already out of the store before it dawned on Victoria. That wasn’t a piece of clothing, that red she’d seen or imagined, that had to be blood. With the shaking hands? Well, that could only mean one thing. Something very bad was going to happen.

She waited until the end of her shift, but when she made it over to where Evan had stood earlier to check. Sure enough, dark red blood marked the floor.

She was out the door so fast that Townes was left staring in shock at where his employee had just been standing seconds before.

“Youths,” He muttered to himself.

“Are you alright?” Remus’ voice shocked Victoria back into reality. She stared at him blankly for a moment, unsure of what he was even referring to when it suddenly hit her. She’d been so focused on making sure the Order was prepared for whatever was about to happen that she’d completely forgotten about her brush with danger.

“I’m okay, really,” She replied, though she couldn’t even convince herself. Now that it was over, she realised just how bad the whole thing could’ve gone. If she hadn’t been paying attention when Evan walked in then she’d be dead by now, and to think there was a point she was almost wishing for that.

“You were incredibly brave today,” He said, he placed his hand gently on her forearm and smiled down at her. With anyone else, she would have felt uncomfortable but Remus had this comforting presence. Maybe one day she’d regret it, but right now she felt like she could trust him. That made two members of the Order.

“I hid in a pile of books, Remus,” She scoffed at the idea. How stupid must she have looked crouched down there as if books would’ve protected her from the killing curse? In the past, when she’d said books had saved her life, she’d never meant it literally.

“You picked up on it, though,” He continued. “Now we’ll all be ready for something to happen. It’s better than just sitting around here. People are starting to get restless.”

“You mean Black is starting to get restless,” She pursed her lips slightly.

He let out a little chuckle. “You’ve really figured him out, haven’t you?”

She shook her head. “I don’t know him at all. I don’t think he’s the type that anyone really knows.”

“He’d like you to know him.”

She groaned. “Not you too.” Remus sent her an interested look. “Marlene has already been through this whole thing.”

“And what ‘whole thing’ is that?” He arched one of his eyebrows.

“You know, this whole fancying—” She stopped mid sentence and sighed. “You’re trying to trick me into saying something, but I won’t fall for it.” She crossed her arms. “I think both you and Marlene are insane. In fact, you should be locked up in St Mungo’s for your own safety.”

Remus laughed again. “Considering nothing is going on, you’re awfully quick to defend yourself.”

She stared at him incredulously for a moment. She couldn’t for the life of her think of a witty comeback to that. Everything she thought of sounded childish or would be taken the wrong way. There was nothing going on, no matter what Remus and Marlene thought.

“Is there a reason you’re standing in the middle of the corridor?” Victoria almost hit the ceiling when another voice interrupted her thoughts. She really wished people would stop doing that to her. Of course, it was Black. She glared at him. “Earth to Vic? Come in.” He pushed himself off the wall he’d been leaning on, and knocked on her forehead.

“You’re all completely bonkers.” She ignored his laugh, and headed home where no more Order members could sneak up on her.

“If you’re going to start talking about Black again, I will get up and leave.” Victoria said when the floor behind her creaked.

“Bit insecure, are we Vic?” Marlene grinned as she took a seat across from her. “But really, how are you feeling?”

She sent Marlene a sharp look. “I’m not nearly as fragile as the whole Order seems to think.”

“I didn’t mean it like that,” She replied, and then sighed. “You considered him to be some kind of a friend right?”

She frowned, and stared down at her chipped nails. “I was lonely. I had no one else to go to.”

“I’m not judging you for anything,” Marlene said softly. “Lily used to be best friends with Snape until he hurt her. I just wanted to make sure that you were feeling okay.”

She shrugged her shoulders. “I’m not worried about Evan, or the other boys. It’s just,” She paused. “It’s Regulus. He’s not a bad person. He just got roped into this life.”

Marlene nodded. “Sirius is always talking about how he wishes he could have taken his brother with him.”

“Why didn’t he?”

“Regulus is a Slytherin,” She replied, Victoria opened her mouth to defend him but Marlene cut her off. “He could leave behind that life at home, but Merlin knows what his own housemates would have done to him.”

Victoria had never thought of that before. She thought time and time again that live would have been easier if Regulus hadn’t been so stubborn and proud. She’d never once thought about the backlash that would’ve happened to him. She knew he wouldn’t be alive now if he’d tried to leave back then.

“Does Sirius really talk about him all the time?” Marlene glanced over her shoulder as if she expected Sirius to appear at the door, then she nodded once. “He never mentions Sirius, ever. I think he’s afraid to. Besides, I suppose he thinks I never met him.”

“Don’t push it,” She said firmly. “If you start wanting to know everything about Sirius, then he could get suspicious. I don’t think he’d ever give you up to You-Know-Who, but I have no doubts his mates wouldn’t think twice about it.”

Victoria frowned slightly. Her mind had wandered to a scary place. A scary place in which she wondered whether Regulus really would give her up. Was there really anything stopping him? She picked nervously at her nails. After a moment, she looked back up at Marlene and opened her mouth to speak just as the door swung open violently.

“They’ve attacked,” It was Benjy Fenwick, looking extremely out of breath and a little worse for wear. Before Victoria had even had the time to process what he’d said, Marlene was up out of her seat and pulling on her cloak. She would never understand how Marlene could do it—be so ready and willing to fight, not knowing whether she’d ever survive.

“You should go home,” Marlene said, tying her blonde hair out of her face. Victoria opened her mouth to protest, but Marlene cut her off. “Remus will owl you to let you know what’s happened, but you need to be at home.” She wished she could dispute it, but she knew deep down that she’d be no good in a fight. She barely used simple magic at home, and she couldn’t remember the last time she’d dueled.

Before she even thought about it, she threw her arms around Marlene and hugged her tight. “Be careful out there.”

Marlene grinned, and disapparted—Benjy was close behind. Victoria flopped back onto the couch and let out a deep sigh. It wasn’t fair that she had people to worry about on both sides. She thought the world of Marlene and she’d been devastated if something happened to her only friend, but then there was Regulus. She didn’t even want to think about that.

She picked her own cloak up and headed home. She had hours of worrying ahead of her yet.

Authors Note: I said there’d be a quicker update this time! Unfortunately, it wasn’t as quick as I’d hoped it would be. I’d been babysitting my cousins for the last ten days and had no time to write, even though I only had another 200-300 words left to write. I have already started the next chapter and I think that’ll be up in about a week, so I will see you all then!

Chapter 12: The Wrong Side.
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Disclaimer: The OC’s and parts of the plot are all that belong to me. Everything else belongs to J.K Rowling, I do not claim ownership to it. Thank you for reading.

Victoria decided that she would never get bored of snogging Regulus Black. She didn’t know how he did it, but the seconds his lips touched hers, everything else ceased to exist. He knew it too. She arched her back to push her body closer into his. His smirk grew wider against her neck.

“Reg,” She half-whispered, half-groaned. He ignored her, and kept kissing further down her neck. Merlin, she didn’t want him to stop. “Reg,” She tried again, firmer this time.

“What is it?” He asked, barely moving his lips away from her neck. She froze for a moment. In all honesty, she couldn’t even remember what she had wanted to say. Regulus drew away and held her face gently in his hands. “What’s wrong?”

She shrugged her shoulders, and sighed. “I saw Evan the other day.” Regulus’ eyes flickered dangerously. “He didn’t see me, but,” She sighed again. “We’re too young for this war.”

He refused to meet her eyes. She knew then that she shouldn’t have said anything. She should have kept her mouth shut like she’d done thus far in their relationship. They’d never discussed the war—it was like an unspoken agreement. They’d never even really discussed the Dark Mark that stained his left arm.

He stood up from the couch suddenly, and ran his fingers through his hair. She watched him carefully. She couldn’t pretend to ignore the fact that he’d been limping all day. She knew what it meant—he’d been there at the Order attack. Potter had been teasing Black about the fact he’d only managed to hit one Death Eater in the leg. He doubted either of them knew it had been Regulus. “You can’t say things like that,” He said suddenly, making Victoria jump in surprise. “We’re safe here, but if you even so much as utter something like that outside then anything could happen to you.” He sighed. “I couldn’t live with myself if anything happened to you.”

“You don’t have to worry about that,” She replied. He sighed again, buried his face in his hands and mumbled something. “You don’t have to worry about it because I don’t speak to anyone but you.” Or Marlene, or Remus, and sometimes even the older brother you hate.

He looked up and smiled at her. She could feel her heart catch in her throat. Oh Merlin, she hated lying to him. “I wish our lives could be different.” In a way, she was sick of this back and forth. She wished their lives could be different too, but they weren’t. This is what they’d been given. It sucked, but it was all they had. “Just promise me this,” He started, “Promise me you’ll be careful when you go out there. You don’t know who is on the wrong side out there.”

She nodded in agreement, but all she could think was—which side was supposed to be the wrong one?

Victoria was starting to get sick of the old house the Order was using as their headquarters. Every time she walked in she wondered whether today would be the day the ceiling would decide to collapse in on her. Sometimes, that would have felt like a blessing.

Especially on the days she walked in to find someone waiting for her. It tended to be Black. It was like he had some sort of sixth sense as to when she’d walk through the door because he was almost always there. Other times it was Marlene, ready with a wicked grin and a drink to shoot back before anyone saw them. Those kind of days were her favourite.

Lily Evans had never been one to wait for her arrival, and yet, there she was. Victoria raised an eyebrow, before dropping her eyes back to her scuffed boots. With any hope, she’d manage to slip into the kitchen where Marlene was probably waiting before Evans noticed her. Realistically, that was a stupid hope considering they were the only two in the room.

“Victoria,” She said, sounding awfully chipper and confident. Victoria fought the urge to roll her eyes. She wasn’t feeling like listening to Evans rant. She just wanted Marlene’s silent understanding. She never thought she’d say it, but she might have actually even preferred Black in that moment. “Can I borrow you for a moment?”

Victoria bit down on her lip, and turned to Lily with a fake smile plastered over her face. “Of course. What can I do for you?”

“Sirius is fond of you,” She started. Victoria felt like smashing her head through the wall. Or maybe Lily’s head. No, that’d bring the wrath of Potter down on her. She really didn’t want to have to deal with him. “Remus tells me you’re not interested. I get that.” That was a new one. “I’m not trying to convince you otherwise. I just. Well.” She paused and took a deep breath. “It made me realise how unfair I’d been to you.”

She arched an eyebrow, and stared blankly at Lily. Where was this coming from? Did she even want to know? With her luck, this was all Black’s idea. She wondered what she’d have to do to convince him to leave her alone. She wasn’t in the Order to make friends, or anything else for that matter. “Thank you, Evans.” She eventually settled on. She was about to move on—she could practically taste the drink Marlene would have for her.

Naturally, Evans chose that moment to speak again. “We were friends at school,” She all but blurted out. Victoria had to cover her laugh with a completely unconvincing cough. Lily acted like she hadn’t noticed. This definitely had to be Black’s idea.

“We spoke once so you could switch patrols with me and make out with Potter,” She replied firmly. Lily blushed slightly and stared down at her own feet—her boots were shiny and in perfect condition unlike Victoria’s. “I don’t think that really made us friends.” Lily nodded once, and opened her mouth to speak again. “With all due respect, it’s been a long day at work and I don’t have the energy to deal with you pretending to like me right now.” With that, she marched on into the kitchen.

“Not everyone is out to get you,” Marlene said as she handed Victoria her drink. She took a big gulp, and sent her friend a meaningful look. “Lil’s a good person, and an even better friend. Get her on your side and you’ll have the whole Order supporting you within the week.”

She sighed, and took another swig of her firewhiskey. “I don’t care if the Order is on my side or not. I never asked for this.”

Marlene rolled her eyes, stole the bottle off Victoria and poured the rest down the mouldy sink. “Maybe you didn’t, but you’re here now. You should be trying harder. It’s whether people like you or not that’ll matter when it comes down to it.”

“And what if you lose?”

“What if we lose?” Marlene corrected, “You’ve got your lover boy for that. The rest of us won’t be alive to worry about it.”

The kitchen door swung open, and Marlene took it as the perfect time to escape. Sirius waved at her joyfully as she left. “Do you two ever speak about anything nice? It’s always death and destruction.” Victoria sighed—she wished she’d had more of that firewhiskey now if she was going to be forced to speak to Black again.

“Yes, sometimes we talk about happy things,” She replied in a fake cheerful voice. “Sometimes we talk about your death. It’s very fun. In fact, there’s nothing that brings me greater pleasure.”

A smirk grew on his face. “I will always remember this day. This wonderful day where you finally admitted I bring you more pleasure than my dear brother.”

Victoria could feel herself going redder and redder by the second. She let out a huff, and pushed past him. She ignored the kissing noises Potter and Pettigrew were making behind her, and slipped into the seat in between Marlene and Emmeline. “If I murder three people, what do you think my chances of staying out of Azkaban are?”

Marlene raised an eyebrow, but Emmeline laughed. “Hun, if you’re going to murder Black then I might even take the fall for you.”

“Don’t encourage her, Ems,” Marlene said with a stern look. “I have no doubt that she’ll actually go through with it.”

“Let her,” The other girl replied with a grin. “She’d be doing me a personal favour.” She sent Victoria a wink.

“Can I have your attention?” Benjy asked. He seemed a little more put together than the last time she’d seen him. When he wasn’t mid-panic he was actually kind of cute. At least, Marlene seemed to think so. For a second, the thought kind of weirded her out. Marlene seemed so independent and in control, that the idea of her dating someone like Fenwick seemed almost absurd to her. If she really thought about it, then she figured that he probably wasn’t that bad. After all, anyone seemed reasonable beside Black, who kept trying to wink at her from across the room.

“How’s Frank?” Caradoc Dearborn asked, half to Benjy and half to the newly married Alice Longbottom. She hadn’t been able to get anything straight out of Marlene, but from what she gathered, Frank had been injured badly in the attack on Diagon Alley. She hadn’t personally ever spoken to him, or Alice, but from what she remembered of him at Hogwarts, he was a decent guy.

“He’s okay. Grumpy that I wouldn’t let him come along today,” Alice answered, though her voice was strong, there was an undeniable anxiety underneath her words. “The healers think it’ll take him a few more days until he’s ready to be back out there.” Caradoc and a few others nodded in understanding.

“All in all, I think the situation was a success,” Benjy said, oddly cheerfully considering they were discussing a battle. “Frank was the only one that suffered an injury, and while I wish we could say we all managed to get out unscathed, I think those are still pretty good odds.” More people nodded in agreement. “Before we move on, does anyone have anything else to add?”

Lily cleared her throat awkwardly. “I think we should thank Victoria for warning us.” Marlene nudged Victoria playfully in the side. Emmeline grinned. Sirius clapped loudly for far too long. Both Lily and Remus smiled softly over at her. She nodded once in acknowledgement, and sent a look to Benjy.

“Yes, thank you,” He stuttered over his words. “Uh, okay. Other business. We’ve been looking into goblin relations again at the request of Moody. Of course, we’re struggling to get any of them to talk, but hopefully that means You-Know-Who is too.” Moody grunted from his isolated corner. “This’d be a really great time for someone to come forward with an odd knowledge in goblin affairs.” A few people laughed. “Honestly, we’re struggling here a bit.”

Victoria tuned out after that. The Order were more delusional than it seemed if they thought they’d be able to improve wizard-goblin relations. Not even You-Know-Who himself stood a chance with that.

Authors Note: I know it’s been too long…again! I had half of this chapter written, but I just couldn’t finish the other half until now. It’s a little bit shorter than I wanted it to be too, but I didn’t want to stretch it out too much. I have already started on the next chapter, so I’m hoping I can keep the momentum going. Maybe, if you’re lucky, I might even get a chapter up next week. Anyway, thank you all for reading!