You are viewing a story from harrypotterfanfiction.com
Against the Odds by yerawizard27
Chapter 1: Tragedy
[Printer Friendly Version of This Chapter]
fantastic chapter image by legendson @ TDA
I squeezed my eyes shut as hard as I could and opened them again.
Well, this wasn't supposed to happen.
I think I may have forgotten how to breathe. Maybe I'll die. That's just what I need. To die here in the bathroom, only to be discovered by my dormmates, lying on the floor holding a pregnancy test.
A positive pregnancy test.
How did this happen?
(Not literally. I know how this happened.) Why me? Oh, Merlin. We slept together once. One time. He was my first.
Shit. Shit. Shit
I groaned loudly, burying my face in my hands.
A baby. A fucking baby.
I'm sixteen. I'm still in Hogwarts. I have my N.E.W.Ts next year! I can't be pregnant. I just can't be. I knocked my head against the edge of the bath from my position on the floor. How could I possibly be such an idiot? I'd be an awful mother! I don't know the first thing about children.
I swallowed harshly, locking my hands between my knees. There was always the option of having it... 'dealt' with. I wouldn't even have to tell him. I had heard rumours of the abortion spell. It was quick and painless, I could have done and dusted within a few hours, this horrible situation would be cleared up and soon just be a distant memory of my idiotic teenage years.
I was never meant to be a mother. Children make me uncomfortable. I babysat for the muggle family next door once. Never again, I swear on Merlin's greasy back hair.
A sob escaped the back of my throat against my will.
I knew I was mainly feeding myself lies to try and soothe the shock. I suppose, deep down, I couldn't get rid of this baby... But I don't see how I could keep in either.
My meltdown is interrupted by a tentative knock on our shared bathroom door.
"Violet? Are you okay?" My dormmate, and best friend, Rose Weasley.
Rose knew me better than anyone. She would see straight through me instantly. I jumped up from the floor and dashed towards the sink. "Um, yeah! Out in a sec!" I struggled to keep my voice even as I splashed my face with cold water.
I glanced in the mirror. It was worse than I thought. My usually violet coloured eyes were wide and blood-shot, and the expression mirrored that of a scared mouse. (I know what you're thinking. My name is Violet and my eyes are violet. How very original. But according to my mother, my eyes were a neutral blue for the first few weeks after my birth, so it is pure coincidence.)
I tried to a few deep breaths to even out blotchiness of my face that always occurs after I cry, which isn't very often. My long dark brown hair was sticking up in weird directions at the top of my head, as if I had been raking my hands through it. Which I had.
I continued my soothing breaths to try and calm myself, panting stupidly as I willed my face to return to normal.
"Vi? Unless you are out of there within thirty seconds, I am Bombarda Maxima-ing your ass out of there." Rose sounded worried.
"Relax, will you? I'm on the loo!" I lied, glancing at my face again and pointing my wand at my hair, trying my best to smooth it out.
"Twenty! Nineteen! Eighteen!" Rose shouted sarcastically at me through the door.
Sighing, I pulled the chain on the toilet, giving myself a final look in the mirror. Apart from the obvious worry and torment in my eyes, my face looked normal, I noticed with relief. I adjusted my hair so it hung down just past my rib cage as usual, tucked the test into the inside pocket of my Gryffindor robes, and exited the bathroom into my dorm.
Rose was standing outside the bathroom with a concerned look on her face. I put all my effort into trying to look indifferent. I practically saw her brain going one hundred miles and hour as she looked into my eyes.
I fought as hard as I could not to break down in sobs and tell her everything about the tests.
The positive tests.
She sighed, seemingly realising if something was truly wrong with me, I would tell her. But I knew I couldn't, no matter how badly I wanted to.
She would tell him.
"Look, guys! 'How to know he's the one- is it true love or just lust? Take this quiz and find out!'" I pulled my eyes away from her intense gaze to look at Ruby who was lying on her stomach on her bed reading Witch Weekly.
Ruby was definitely one of my closest friends. Not as close as Rose and I, but still close enough. She's the only one who knows about what happened between me and him.
It was all her fault really.
It was the start of October. We had only been back at school for about a month, and it was the first trip to Hogsmeade of the year. Ruby and I had spilt up from Rose who had run off it look at quills and books and stuff. Yawn.
We decided to head to the three broomsticks for a drink. Frankly, I couldn't wait. Jeremy and I had broken up during the summer after six months together. What kind of guy dumps a girl just because she wasn't ready to have sex with him yet?
An utter douche, that's who.
It was with this mindset that Ruby and I sat at a tiny table in the middle of the hustle and bustle of other Hogwarts students drinking. Butter beer, in the cases of the young and the goody-goodies. Normally I would do the same.
Not this evening.
I was snapped out of my flashback by a pillow being thrown at my face. As I yanked it away, it was fairly obvious who had been the one to throw it.
"Rose" I muttered venomously.
Giggling, Rose picked up the second pillow from Ruby's bed, where she had joined Ruby to read about the quiz. I screeched out something resembling a battle cry as I dived for the closet weapon, which just so happened to be a pillow from Alex's bed, which was the one closest to the bathroom. I ran at Rose and began to hit her as she squealed and tried to escape.
Ruby then came to Rose's defence and hit me across the face with a teddy bear.
Oh no she didn't.
Together, the three of us screamed and laughed and beat each other with pillows, until the room was bathed in feathers.
The door burst open to reveal Alex standing there looking confused. We all stopped mid-war. Literally.
I had my hands above my head clutching the pillow, about to slam it down on Ruby who was on the floor amongst the feathers. Ruby's face was still holding an expression of fear, as I'm sure mine still held an emotion that can only be described as victory.
All was silent for a moment.
As we all stayed still, as if we were playing an insane version of 'statues', that muggle party game. Alex looked at all of us for a moment before grabbing a towel and whipping it at Rose who was standing on her bed (the one nearest the door) where she was previously cheering me on.
We all burst into laughter and began attacking each other again.
About an hour later, we were getting into bed when Misdana (or Missy as we call her) came into our room for the night. She sighed when she saw the state of our room and with a quick wave of her wand, the room was returned to it's former condition.
Missy wasn't the greatest of friends with the four of us, she usually preferred to keep company with the Ravenclaws of our year, but we all got along well.
I roughly pulled the curtains around my bed shut, shouting a quick goodnight in the general direction of the four girls in the room. They all called back their farewells as I lay back on my pillow with a sigh.
And it was as I snuggled down in my covers, preparing to go to sleep, when my thoughts drifted to him as usual, that I remembered the tests.
The positive tests.
Well... that's it! This is my very first story, so I'm a little nervous. Please leave a review and let me know what you think :)
Chapter 2: Wide Awake
[Printer Friendly Version of This Chapter]
And it was as I snuggled down in my covers, preparing to go to sleep, when my thoughts drifted to him as usual, that I remembered the tests.
The positive tests.
Two weeks seem to go by very quickly after I learn that I'm pregnant, and I'm surprised to find Christmas is less than a month away. I feel like everything I do I do in a daze. I hardly notice the time go by.
What do I do? Do I tell him? Do I tell Rose? Do I tell my Mum? I know for a fact she'll hate this entire situation. She's never hidden her distaste for the Potter family.
Don't get me wrong, she's not evil or anything. She doesn't hate what Harry Potter did for us all. She appreciates him, y'know, saving everybody's lives and that, but she hates the excessive praise he and his family get. To this day there are interviews and pictures of Harry Potter, the saviour of us all. Mum thinks his kids just get a free pass and never have to work for anything the get. Which isn't true at all.
I hardly see Mum much anyway, since I go to Hogwarts and always spend my Christmases with the Weasleys. The only time I see her is summer break, and even then, she's working all the time. She's the editor of the Daily Prophet, and she loves her work. She commits to it so fiercely that sometimes I find myself jealous of a newspaper.
If I thought getting her attention was difficult in the past, I'm sure it won't be hard now.
I knew getting pregnant was irresponsible. If you asked the students of Hogwarts who was most unlikely to have a baby out of wedlock, I was sure I would be number one. To those who didn't know me, I was just 'that quiet Gryffindor who is friends with the children of the saviours of the Wizarding World.' I was not someone to drink or sleep around.
Next year would be N.E.W.T year, and I'm estimating that the baby will be born this summer. There is no way I can go into seventh year with a baby. I knew if I kept the baby I would have to leave Hogwarts. The thought makes my heart break into a thousand pieces.
My thought process is interrupted when I realise the entire transfiguration class has gone silent.
I look up to see Professor McGonagall looking at me expectantly. Shit. She must have asked me something. Anxiety riddles my stomach as I search my brain hopelessly for even a hint of what she said. Nada.
Rose is coughing maniacally beside me, whispering "Animagi." under her breath. I take a chance and look up at Professor McGonagall.
"Er... Animagi?" I say, although it sounds like a question.
"Very good, Miss Weasley" McGonagall emphasises, glaring at Rose. I swear the woman must be over a hundred years old at this stage, but she's the only teacher that scares Rose shitless. Rose blushes almost as red as her hair and looks down at her lap.
I imagine Rose being a mother. I think she would be a great one. Not while she's still in school, of course. She has more sense than that.
The next day I got morning sickness for the first time.
I woke up earlier than all the other girls and was just lying in bed enjoying the last few minutes of sleep before I felt my stomach lurch. I swear, that dash to the loo and heaving my guts out really woke me up. After the burning in my eyes had subsided and the lump in my throat had decreased, I paused.
I know it sounds like an odd place for a realisation, staring into a toilet bowl full of last night's dinner, but that's where it happened. My body was changing, evolving in way that was purely being caused by this baby. It hit me almost like a pile of hippogriffs all at once. This was a baby. This was real.
In that moment, I knew for sure. I wouldn't be able to get rid of the kid.
I was definitely not being naïve about his. I knew this would be hard, the hardest thing I would ever have to do. And although the thought of leaving Hogwarts, telling my mother, telling my friends, telling him, makes me want to sink into a black hole and never emerge, I know it's the right thing to do.
Later that day, Rose and I sat down with her younger cousin Lily, and the two of them began discussing the Christmas holidays. Every Christmas, I go to the Weasley's because Mum is always working. But there is absolutely no chance I'm going this year though. No chance. He'll be there.
I know I'm being stupid. It's not like I can avoid him forever. After all, I am carrying his spawn.
I wonder briefly how he'll react. I knew I was on the verge of a mental breakdown when I first suspected it, but now that I've had time to adjust, I see the baby in almost everything I do.
I see it in the vegetables I'm eating at dinner now rather than the usual chips.
I see it in the new shine in my hair and the strength in my nails.
I see it in the slight rounding of my face.
I can't believe it. I'm having actually having a baby.
If my calculations are correct, (and I'm positive they are, considering I've stayed awake almost every night since I found out staring at the ceiling above my bed doing maths like a mad person) I got knocked up on the first of October. It is now the second of December. That means I am sixty-two days pregnant, which is roughly ten weeks. There are usually forty weeks all together, right? I search my brain for any common knowledge I have of pregnancy.
Ruby poked me with her fork. I didn't even noticed her join us.
"Huh?" I looked up at her. She nodded at Rose. "Rosie is trying to talk to you, Violio."
"Oh" I muttered, feeling embarrassed. "Sorry, Ro. I just have a lot on my mind," I said apologetically.
Rose looked at me with her usual concerned eyes and rubbed my arm. "I know, Vi," she soothed gently. Her kindness made me want to cry.
"Shit, are you crying, Violet?" Alex leaned over from where she had been sitting along the long table to get a closer look at the rare enigma that was Violet Beale's tears. When she had confirmed that yes, I was indeed crying, her mouth almost hit the table in shock.
"Why are you crying?" Rose asked softly, curiosity seeping into her words.
I understood their surprise. Ever since we all met when we were eleven, none of them had ever seen me cry. Not even Rose.
I felt the tears stream faster down my face and I hiccuped, "Rose.. is *hiccup* being.. so.. so.. *hiccup* nice!" I wailed. I could tell I was being ridiculous. Even in my own head I knew it was insane to cry over someone being nice to you. My bloody emotions didn't get that though.
"That's why you're crying?" Ruby asked, surprised.
I nodded as the tears continued to fall. Rose grabbed me by the elbow gently and pulled me up to standing. "Shall we go up to the dorm?" She whispered to me quietly, doing her best not to turn this into a scene. I nodded again. I knew I was making a fool of myself and I couldn't ignore the stares of half the school from around the Great Hall, shocked to see Violet Beale cry.
Rose gently led me towards the door and the rest of my dormmates and Lily created a sort of moving barrier around us to stop people gawking at me.
We were almost to the door when I heard a familiar deep voice say my name, and I was catapulted back to that night.
After far too many fire whiskeys, the day began to grow darker as we grew drunker. Ruby and I began a muggle game called 'truth or dare'. Ruby is a half-blood and grew up in muggle London, so she knows all about muggles and their lifestyles.
Basically, we would dare each other to do stupid stuff or force the other to tell the whole truth, and when we were done, we would take a shot of fire whiskey again.
The dares started out really stupid, like admitting who was our first crush. But the more we drank, the more daring we got. I dared her to jump over the bar and steal the clock hanging on the wall. To my utter shock, she actually did it when the bar keep went back into the storage area. The entire pub cheered when she waved it proudly above her head.
She also revealed she lost her virginity to Tommy Browne when she was fifteen. That one was a shock. Tommy Browne was so not Alex's type at all. He had glasses and terrible acne, and he practically lived in the library.
She then dared me to grab some random bloke and dance with him on our table. I did this, no problem. The poor guy seemed terribly frightened of me, all females in general, actually. He nervously pushed his glasses up his nose a lot. I think I did him a favour, though, because after I pulled him up onto the table and danced with him, he climbed down into the crowd of men who cheered him, patted his back and offered to buy him another drink.
I remember thinking how unlike myself I was behaving. I was always so quiet and kept to myself. But there was something exhilarating in the freedom of inebriation. The alcohol coursed through my veins, it's fiery hot trail leaving me tingling.
Standing on the table, I saw several Hogwarts guys and a few of the random men looking me up and down. I suddenly felt very exposed in my tight skirt. I climbed down immediately, not liking the attention, even if it was flattering. I let my hair fall forward, hiding my blushing face as I thought of another dare to give Ruby.
I looked around the room, looking for inspiration for a good dare. It was then that I saw him. He was over by the bar with a few friends. Damn that boy looked good. I blushed an even deeper red and turned back to Ruby before he could look and catch me staring.
"I dare you to... kiss that woman over there. On the lips" I said gesturing in the direction of some woman standing chatting to a random man.
Ruby surprised me by not arguing and heading straight over to the woman, put her hands on either side of her face, and pressed her lips firmly to hers. It only lasted about three seconds, but the entire crowd cheered and wolf-whistled. I caught several guys in our year's jaws drop.
When she returned to the table, she smiled as she took the shot. "Your turn," She said.
I sighed, glancing back at him involuntarily. This time, he noticed me looking and smiled at me. I felt the butterflies trying to bust out of my stomach. I nodded shyly. I see the alcohol hadn't really helped in this area. He still affected my entirely. Ruby noticed me looking and a devilish look crossed her features. Fuck.
"I dare you... to go snog hottie over there!" Ruby announced proudly.
"No." I said simply. She and Rose were the only people who knew how much I liked him. There was no way I would kiss him. No way.
"What, are you scared, chicken?" Ruby began making clucking noises and bobbing her head back and forth. Even I could tell she was slurring her words, and in retrospect, I realise that the fire whiskey had taken more of a toll on me than I had realise at the time.
I knew this because if I had been sober, there is no way Ruby could convince me to kiss him. But I wasn't sober.
Not even close.
As I returned to the present, I realised he had called my name again.
All of the girls except for Ruby had no idea we had slept together. They had no idea how awkward this conversion was likely to be. Ruby raised her eyebrows knowingly as I heard his footsteps approach behind me, and I felt his hand on my shoulder.
All the other girls greeted him cheerfully and I winced.
I turned around slowly to face James Sirius Potter.
Chapter 3: Ready or Not
[Printer Friendly Version of This Chapter]
As Ruby raised her eyebrows knowingly, I heard his footsteps approach behind me, and I felt his hand on my shoulder.
All the other girls greeted him cheerfully and I winced.
I turned around slowly to face James Sirius Potter.
I prayed my face went back to some realm of normality, and I didn't have snot and drool running down it. (You're very welcome for that mental image)
As I turned around and looked up into those gorgeous hazel eyes that I had been avoiding for the past ten weeks, I felt my heart accelerate madly and my knees weaken. James was looking down at me with a worried expression, and some other emotion.
Was it... guilt? Why would he feel guilty? I mentally shook my head. He doesn't feel guilty. I guess it's just my bloody pregnancy emotions messing with my head.
I tried desperately to calm myself down, but I kept hyperventilating like a lunatic.
"Violet," James said again, looking at me very seriously. I should be mad at him. He had been avoiding me just as much as I was avoiding him.
So why is it that all I can think about is jumping at him and tangling my fingers in his gorgeously messy black hair?
He and I actually used to be friends. Before it happened anyway. I knew Rose knew something was going on between us, she knew how I felt about him. She never pushed me into telling her, though. That's why I love her.
"What's the matter?" James asked, carefully watching my face as he waited for my answer.
Right now in my emotional state, I knew I wouldn't be able to look into those amazing eyes without breaking down and telling him everything... even about the baby. His baby. Oh, Merlin.
"I, um... banged by knee? On the... table?" I said, but I sounded very unsure.
I started to inspect the floor as I tried to collect my bearings. I noticed the girls all still standing beside me, even Lily and Missy. I looked at Ruby and she smiled at me sympathetically. If anyone knew about awkward encounters with one-night shags, it was her.
James was still looking at me when I glanced back at him.
"Right.." he said, obviously not believing a word of my lies.
"Um... Yeah. So we had better get going. Things to do and all... So. Yeah." I stammered and walked quickly out of the Great Hall, leaving him standing there with the girls. Not for long though, because almost immediately, I heard the sound of several footsteps behind me and then Rose's warm embrace.
They all walked with me in silence up to Gryffindor tower. Lily gave the fat lady the password, and they all ushered me up to the sixth years dorm.
Lily was in third year unlike the rest of us, but she came in too, which I appreciated. Rose sat me down on my bed, the one closest to the window, and wrapped one arm around me, and the others all climbed onto the bed too. It was then that I truly let go all of the emotion of the two months, all my stress and my worry, and I cried.
I don't mean cried like delicate tears running soundlessly down my face, I mean cried. I threw my head back and I bawled my eyes out, I cried so hard my vision blurred and my nose ran and my mouth hung open, and I wailed loudly about how unfair my life was.
All the girls exchanged worried, disbelieving glances. I noticed Missy scurry off and I felt a flash of anger. How could she abandon me when I needed her?
But she returned from the bathroom clutching piles of tissues, and handed me one. I felt so bad for thinking she would leave me that I cried harder. This continued on for about five minutes and I tried to get a hold of myself, and eventually, I was reduced to a snivelling, embarrassed, tissue-requiring mess.
This time Alex ran to get me the tissues. I smiled at her gratefully as she handed me the wad of tissues and I heard several sighs of relief from the group of girls around me.
"Are you going to tell us what the problem is?" Alex asked softly, positioning herself back on the bed with all my other friends.
"I don't know." I sighed. "I guess I'm just hormonal. Time of the month and all." I lied.
Well not lied-lied. That was partly true, I guess. This would be like a nine-month long hormonal rampage. Everyone seemed to believe me, even Rose. They all reached out and petted me soothingly.
"I know!" Ruby exclaimed. "Why don't we have a sleepover?"
Everyone (excluding Lily) groaned.
"Come on! It'll be fun! We can do each others hair, paint our nails, do different skin treatments and play sleepover games!" she squealed, getting more excited as she went on.
"Sleepover games?" Missy asked questioningly.
"Yeah! Like charades! Or truth or dare!" Ruby exclaimed.
"No." I said seriously. "No truth or dare."
Ruby looked at me sympathetically again, realising her mistake, while everyone else just looked confused.
"I don't understand. How do you play?" Rose asked. She hates not knowing stuff. "We aren't playing it." I said finally.
Ruby nodded. "We don't have to. Sorry" she said, patting my arm again. Now everyone looked really confused.
"The sleepover's a good idea though." I said, hoping to distract everyone. It worked.
"Yes!" she exclaimed, and again everyone groaned, except for me and Lily.
"Right! Let's get cracking! Lily! You go to your dorm and convince your friends to cover for you. Get your pyjamas! The pinker the better! And you!" Ruby screeched, pointing at Missy. "You take a the pillows from the beds and arrange them on the floor. Rose! You're in charge of snac-"
"Wait." Lily said quietly. We all looked at her and waited for her to speak. "I'm coming?" She asked.
"Of course, you muppet! Why wouldn't you?" Ruby exclaimed. Lily grinned so widely I thought her face would split.
"Right so. Off you go." Ruby commanded.
Lily dashed from the room as Rose continued to chuck commands at us. Rose went down to the kitchens to get us loads of junk food, Missy took all the pillows/cushions/blankets in the room and arranged them on the ground. Alex got everyone's makeup out from their area of their room and created a pile beside the circle of pillows.
Wasn't really a pile, more like a mountain.
I just sat on my bed while Ruby barked orders at everyone. Except for me, that is. I think she realises that my crying had nothing to do with my time of the month. Of course she has no idea about the baby, but I bet she thinks this is about him. James.
I wonder what the baby will look like? Of course it's hair will be dark, black like James or dark brown like mine and my mother's. In fact James' father has black hair too.
What if it inherits James' mother's hair? Ginny Weasley? I don't think I would mind having a red head. In fact, I think I would be cute. Rose has red hair.
Rose. It's only just occurred to me that she is related to the baby. James is her cousin after all. In fact, Lily is James' sister.
That makes her my baby's aunt.
She entered the room wearing pink flannel pyjamas covered in yellow ducks.
I felt my heart warm at the sight of her.
She's my baby's aunt.
I smiled at her and she smiled back. She'd better be one of those aunts who spoil their nieces and nephews.
A few hours later and we're all sitting in a circle laughing and chatting and doing each other's hair and makeup.
Lily is sitting behind me styling my hair into some sort of complicated braid. I feel so much lighter after my cry. I'm chatting away with Rose who is sitting opposite me painting Ruby's toenails a bright shade of scarlet. She always paints her nails with magic, so she's making a right mess of doing them the muggle way.
Somehow the conversation is steered back to the Christmas holidays. There's only another week and a half until we leave for the break.
Rose's family is so huge, so she's only allowed to bring one friend over ever year. She's brought me every year, since first year.
So when I told her I wouldn't be joining her this year, she immediately knew something was up. "What do you mean you aren't coming? Of course you are! It's tradition!" Rose demanded.
"I have loads of work I need to get done! And studying! The quiet of the castle is the best place to get it all done!" I cried.
Rose looked like she didn't believe me at all. "But it'll be fun! We'll get to see Lils almost every day!" Rose said, smiling at her cousin.
Rose had no idea that avoiding the Potter family was exactly why I didn't want to go. Every time I imagine the look on James' face after I tell him about his unborn child makes me want to run away and hide under a rock.
"Is it because of me?" Rose asked quietly, staring hard down at her knees.
"What?!" I exclaimed. "Why would it have anything to do with you?" I asked.
"I don't know, Vi... You just seem so distant lately. I feel like you're keeping things from me and I don't understand why. I feel like you don't want to be my best friend anymore." Rose's eyes filled with tears.
The entire circle had gone silent to listen in on our conversation.
"Oh Rose! No no no! Of course not! I love you to bits and you know it!" I insisted, throwing myself across the circle at my red-headed friend.
I was very gentle though. Much gentler than I would have been ten weeks ago.
I wrapped her in my arms and strangely, we both began to sob.
I swear, I never cry, but lately I have been an emotional wreck. Roddy must be slipping something in my pumpkin juice. (By the way, Roddy is the head house-elf in the Hogwarts kitchens. There isn't just some bloke named Roddy following me around looking for chances to spike my drinks.)
After a minute or two, Rose and I looked up at each other and grinned, wiping away our tears.
"So you're coming then?" Rose inquired hopefully. I let out a long sigh. I suppose I just keep on avoiding Potter as much as possible.
"I guess so."
Rose squealed and hugged me again. Everyone jumped on top of us and hugged us both. I removed myself from the heap of girls on the floor, afraid someone might hit me in the stomach by accident. I stood there watching all my friends rolling around giggling and I felt so happy.
Then I realised what I had agreed to.
A/N: Thank you so much to those who have reviewed! Reading them really makes my day, keep 'em coming! :) I would love to hear more of your opinions!
Chapter 4: Trust me, I'm a Doctor
[Printer Friendly Version of This Chapter]
A/N: I'm really sorry this chapter took longer to be updated than usual. I was having serious writer's block. But no matter, because here it is! Please r/r! :)
On Sunday, a few days later, I find myself sitting in the Gryffindor common room with Rose, Alex and Albus (Rose's cousin and James' brother). James is in the year above us, but Albus is in sixth year like us.
Rose is sitting on the floor beside the fire (which was basically the same colour as her hair) with her nose buried in a book so thick, I think it weighs more than me. Merlin knows why that girl enjoys reading so much.
Albus and Alex are sitting together on the sofa chatting quietly. I'm in the single squashy chair trying to do my Potions homework on my knees. I really should be doing this in the library, but I wasn't bothered to get up out of this chair. Bloody hell, it was comfortable.
When I finished all my homework that was due for tomorrow, I closed all my books and sat back and closed my eyes with a sigh. I must have fallen asleep, because next thing I knew, I was being shaken awake.
"Violet?" I groaned loudly. I opened one eye slowly but didn't move my head at all. I saw Rose standing in front of me with an amused expression and an outstretched hand. "What?" I moaned, closing my eyes again.
Rose giggled and grabbed my hand. "Violet... It's way past curfew and we have classes tomorrow."
"Don't remind me!" I groaned, squashing my face into a cushion. Rose laughed out loud and pulled me to my feet. The fast movement made my stomach flip and for a minute I was afraid I was going to projectile vomit on Rose's face.
I stayed utterly still for a moment, concentrating extremely hard on keeping my dinner in my stomach. "What are you doing?" I heard Alex say from the stairs behind me. I didn't answer her, because I knew that if I opened my mouth now, it wouldn't be pretty.
I clutched my stomach. It wasn't big enough for anyone to notice that I was pregnant yet. In fact, you really couldn't see anything at all.
"Are you okay?" Rose asked, still holding my hand. " Yeah! Yeah, I'm fine!" I insisted, trying to seem cheerful, as my stomach settled down. Sighing with relief I followed Rose through the door leading to the staircase to the girls dorm.
Alex had already gone up to our dorm ahead of us so Rose and I walked up the stairs together. When we reached the sixth year dorm I pushed open the door and saw Missy was already asleep in her four poster bed. The door to the bathroom was closed, so Alex must be in there getting ready for bed.
I threw myself down on my bed and sighed. I knew no matter how tired I was, there was little chance I would sleep. My head was so full of worries still, even after my emotional meltdown. I felt so much lighter and carefree for a day, but then I saw James walking down the corridor and I felt terrible all over again.
The door to the bathroom opened and Alex emerged, in her green pyjamas and her light brown hair was bundled up on top of her head in a loose bun. She smiled at me as she walked towards her bed, but I was too tired to move my facial muscles into a smile.
Rose went and got ready for bed too. My mind was running around with the usual thoughts of James and the baby, and The Potter family, and the Weasley family, and my education, and my... *cringe* Mum. I am not looking forward to telling her.
Well that's a huge understatement.
I should really go to Madam Pomfrey and make sure everything is okay. With the baby, I mean. But I can't help but be worried that she would get in contact with mum or tell Professor McGonagall, who is headmistress as well as my Transfiguration teacher.
If I specifically told her not to, she wouldn't though, would she? Patient confidentiality and all that?
Frankly, I was worried about the baby, if I was doing the right things. Should I be eating healthier? Should I be taking vitamins or something? Is it okay to fly? Can I floo?
I spent a long time lying there stressing out about things, long after all the girls had gone to sleep. I was still wearing my muggle weekend clothes, but I was far too tired to get up and get dressed.
And so, in the early hours of the morning, I finally fell asleep.
On top of the covers, in my jeans and stretchy t-shirt.
I think I may be losing it.
I woke up from a nightmare with a start. My heart was pounding quickly in my chest and my hair was damp with sweat. Feeling extremely uncomfortable, I realised I was still wearing my day clothes. It's still dark outside and all the girls are asleep and breathing heavily, with the exception of Rose, who is snoring so loudly, you'd swear she had swallowed an elephant.
I sigh in relief, after realising I was no longer in the dream. I rub my hand over my face and through my messy hair, and decide to go and have a shower, despite the ungodly hour.
I step into the bathroom and shut the door quietly behind me. I carefully strip out of my clothes and step under the stream of warm water. I close my eyes and let the warmth surround me. I lean my head back and hold my hair under the running water.
As I wash my hair, my thoughts again return to the baby and I realise I want go to the Hospital Wing and get checked out. I'm totally surprised at how made up my mind is. I don't think I have ever been so worried about anything in my entire life, as I am about this child.
As I pour a handful of my fruity body wash into my hand, I stop my thoughts from drifting to James or my mother. I don't want to start my day off feeling worried. So instead I think of pointless things. I think about what nail polish I'm going to paint my nails tonight. I think about Rose and her frizzy hair. I think about Quidditch. I think about my Charms essay.
When I finish with my shower, I return quietly into my dorm and see all the girls are still asleep. I change quickly into my school robes and make my bed quickly, even though I don't have to. I check my watch to see it is quarter to six in the morning, much earlier than I usually care to wake.
As I gaze at all the sleeping girls around me I instantly make a decision to go to the Hospital Wing. I stuff my feet into my shoes and silently make my way out the door and down to the common room. I move quickly, yet quietly, afraid that if I stop and think for too long, I'll change my mind. I know Madam Pomfrey will already be awake, dealing with unlucky patients who have managed to end up in her care.
As I dash into the ward, I notice Madam Pomfrey strolling in between the beds, checking on the sleeping students, although there aren't many. I recognise Michelle Every, a Hufflepuff girl in my year. She seems to be covered in boils. Normally I would be curious, but after spending six years in this school, you learn not to ask questions.
Madam Pomfrey looks up at me as I walk through the door and she looks at confused to see me for a moment. "Yes?" She asks, although not impolitely. I clear my throat and my eyes dart to all the sleeping figures. "I was wondering, Madam Pomfrey, if I could speak to you alone for a moment?" She nods and points towards a door at the back of the ward. "I will be in with you in a moment. Beale, is it?" I force a smile on my face and nod. She smiles back and me and continues around the beds.
I go through the door she pointed out and find myself in a small room with a desk and two chairs facing it. I've never been in here before. I sit down in one of the chairs and wait for Madam Pomfrey.
She doesn't take long, and enters the office quietly. She doesn't say anything until she sits down at the desk and looks at me carefully. "You look very pale." She points out and I want to roll my eyes at her. I'm always pale.
Before I say anything back to her, she speaks again. "Is there something I can help you with?"
I bite my lip. Maybe this was a bad idea.
"Your name is Violet, isn't it?" She prods at me, trying to get me to talk.
"Yes" I say. My voice croaks and I clear my throat again.
I take a deep breath, and just say it, like ripping of a plaster. "I'mprettysureI'mpregnant" I say quickly. She looks confused for a second and then her feature smooth out, and concern shows in her eyes.
"I see." She says professionally. "Did you take a test?" I nod my head, still unable to form words properly. She stays quiet for a moment. "And?" she asks and I blush. "Um, it was positive."
"Any symptoms?" She asks and I nod. "I was, um... late, which is why I took the test. I have terrible sickness in the morning too." I left out the part about my boobs hurting like hell.
"Okay. How far along do you think you are?" I look down at my knees and and mutter, "About ten weeks." I look up at her and she looks deep in thought. "At fifteen weeks, you'll have your first scan."
I look up at her. Her eyes are filled with care as she gives me a soft smile. "Normally you would have your scan at some time over the next three weeks, but since the holidays are coming up, and I assume you don't have any previous history of miscarriages," Madam Pomfrey looked up at me for confirmation and I nodded swiftly. "We can wait until you get back from Christmas break."
I sigh. "Okay." I stammered and she gave me another smile. "I will have to inform the headmistress."
My heart stops momentarily and then picks up speed. "NO! No! Please don't. I haven't told anyone yet and I don't want people to find out this way!" I shout, and I begin to panic.
Professor McGonagall will tell my mother, who will force me to tell her about James, who my mother will kill, and my baby will be born without a father, and I will be the most hated person in the Wizarding World for being the cause of the death of the son of our saviour. Then war will break out! It'll be worse than when Voldemort was alive!
Madam Pomfrey looks at me with worry and I realise I must look insane. I smooth down my hair and try to appear calm. "Please." I look up at her and give her my very best puppy-dog eyes.
She sighs and looks at me. "So, I assume the father has no idea?" I shake my head and she lets out a breath. "Okay. You can have until your fifteen week scan to tell all the parties involved, but by then, whether you have come clean or not, I will be informing the headmistress of your situation. Until then, I promise to keep this confidential." She looks at me seriously and I sigh a breath of relief.
Five weeks. One week after we get back for our Christmas holidays. I can do this.
"Thank you." I breath and she smiles at me. "Of course. If you have any questions, don't hesitate in coming to me." I stand up to leave but she holds up a hand to stop me.
She routes around in one of her drawers and pulls out a large bottle and hands it to me.
"This is prenatal potion. Take a spoonful every morning. It should help with the morning sickness and will help the foetus receive all the nutrients it needs." I nod to her and turn to leave once again.
"Violet." I turn back around and she smiles at me. "In all seriousness, any concerns or questions, please ask." I smile back at her and leave the ward, tucking the large green bottle in my robes, hiding it from view.
A/N: Hi again! Thanks for reading. Thoughts? Suggestions? Guesses as to what is going to happen? Let me know! Please feed the review box, I thinks he's hungry :)
Chapter 5: This is a Call
[Printer Friendly Version of This Chapter]
A/N: How proud of me are you for this super-fast update? Sorry this chapter is so short, and a total filler, but trust me, the story is at a turning point! Things are definitely starting to rumble. Please review! Thank you!
Soon enough, it was time for us to go home for the holidays.
Rose had packed for me, due to the fact that I had been so fatigued the last few days, and I couldn't sleep from all the stress and worry of telling James, I could barely keep my eyes open, never mind muster up the strength to use magic to pack.
On the morning of our departure from Hogwarts, Rose, Ruby and I all sat in the carriage pulled by the Thestrals that brought us to Hogsmeade train station. I was the only one out of the five of us that could see them. I have been able to see them since third year, after my Gran died.
When we reached the train station, we were one of the last few to board the train. Ruby had left all her packing until the very last minute, and totally over-packed. Who needs five trunks for one week? When you are going to your own home?
As we looked into all the compartments, and it seemed as though there was only one that contained less than three people.
I felt my heart swell in my chest and my stomach drop. As the girls ran into the carriage, whilst I took a slight step back, out the door. "Where are you going?" Rose asked, her brow furrowing.
"Um... I need to, er, check in on someone. Make sure they have... change for a fiver..." I mumbled almost incoherently, taking small steps back out of the carriage, staring hard at the floor. When I was standing in the corridor, I dashed off in the other direction. I heard a small, "what was that about?" from one of James' friends. I never actually looked to see who they were.
I looked in each window to each compartment, dying to see someone I knew. I looked through one and saw Alex chatting to some Hufflepuff guy and my heart lifted. I opened up the compartment door and burst in.
"Sorry, do you guys mind? Everywhere else is full." I sat down next to Alex and smiled at the Hufflepuff guy. He was blushing, and I now noticed Alex shared the same expression.
"Sorry to interrupt." I said, yawning loudly and rested my head on Alex's shoulder and kicked my feet under me. She patted my leg and continued chatting to the 'Puff as I fell asleep.
I awoke to the sound of whispering. I kept my eyes closed, praying for a few more minutes sleep.
"How long has she been out?" A deep voice whispered quietly. I felt my spine stiffen.
It was him. He was here.
I kept my eyes shut.
"About an hour." I heard Alex say from above me. My head was resting on her knees. "She's been sleeping so much lately, it's mad. I think she's under a lot of stress." I heard Rose add in a low voice.
"Is she alright?" He spoke again. Merlin, he has a nice voice. "Has she seemed... strange recently? At least stranger than normal?"
I wanted to protest, I was always normal, but I kept quiet, wanting to hear what everyone said. The compartment was silent for a moment, it seemed as though everyone was contemplating his words.
"Totally." I heard Alex whisper, and a "Mmhm," from Rose.
"Really? Did she... say anything? About me, I mean" His voice remained quiet, but his tone was quite urgent.
Oh no. I did not like where this conversation was headed. How do I stop this? I can't let them know I've been listening. Shit! Maybe I should cause a scene. Is it too soon to pretend to be in labour? Oh Merlin. Fuuuuuuuuuccc-
My thoughts are stopped by a large crash, as the door to our compartment flew open.
"James! Come quick, mate! The trolley lady is giving out the sweets for free!" Albus screamed from the doorway.
"Shh! You'll wake Vi..." James trailed off as he looked at me and saw my eyes open. Al was standing in the doorway next to a tall blonde boy I recognised as Scorpius Malfoy, a Slytherin and Albus' best friend. Albus looked at me lying there and a guilty look crossed his face. "I'm sorry Violet... I didn't see you. I just got so excited, I wasn't thinking..."
"No worries." I smiled reassuringly at him, while sitting myself up. I was acting all cool on the outside, but on the inside, I was on my knees, worshipping this boy for interrupting possibly the most awkward conversation in the history of time.
"So are you coming?" Scorpius exclaimed, looking at James. I could feel James watching me but I looked at everything and everyone but him.
He sighed, and stood up to join his brother and Scorpius.
"Bye Rose!" Scorpius shouted over his shoulder as he, James and Albus raced each other down the corridor. I looked at Rose to see her cheeks were a bright pink.
I made a mental note to tease her about that later when we were alone. I looked at her knowingly but she just ignored me and continued reading a book. That girl needs to stop reading. It's not healthy. She takes after her mother. I settled back down on Alex's knee and she started combing her fingers through my long hair.
It wasn't long until I was being shaken awake again.
"Gnpgh!" I grumbled, attempting to turn over and return to sleep.
I heard quite a few laughs in the compartment around me so I yawned and stretched my arms above my head and opened my eyes. My head was still on Alex's knee, and I found that several people had joined us since I had fallen asleep. Rose and Alex had been here before, but Rose had obviously left and gotten changed into muggle clothes. Alex was still wearing her school robes, probably because she couldn't move without waking me.
But since falling asleep, Albus, Ruby, Fred and Scorpius all squeezed in next to Rose on the seats. Scorpius and Rose were sitting extremely close together, but it didn't look like they minded.
I realised I was stretched out over a seat meant for at least three people and felt very guilty as I looked at all five of them squashed together.
It was as I shifted to sit up again, I realised my feet were resting on someone's knees.
I jerked my feet away and stood suddenly. "I should... Um, go get dressed... Into er, my muggle clothes..." I didn't look at him. I don't know how I thought I could do this. Seeing him everyday, being so close to him... touching him. It was too hard.
I tried to hide my embarrassment as I rushed off to get changed.
Once we pulled up at King's Cross Station, Rose linked her arm in mine and we dragged our trunks out onto the platform. I spotted the Weasleys immediately, the large group of distinctive red heads were hard to miss. Hermione and Ron were saying hello to their son (and Rose's brother) and his new girlfriend, a girl from Ravenclaw. I recognised her because she's keeper for their Quidditch team.
Rose dashed over to them, dumped her trunk and hugged them both. Ron hugged her back with such adoration, I wanted to cry. I hadn't seen my dad since he walked out on me and my Mum when I was three. Good riddance, I think.
I walked over and said hello to Hermione, who pulled me into a warm hug. I loved Hermione. I really thought of her as a second mother. "Violet, honey! How are you? You're looking very well!"
Ron, too, gave me a hug, things he doesn't give away easily. He smiled at me warmly. I felt someone tap my shoulder and turned around to see James there, looking at me.
"James, m'boy! How's my favourite godson?" Ron bellowed, patting James on the back.
James smiled weakly at him, and turned back around to me. "Violet, could I talk to you for a minute?" James whispered in my ear. I physically fought off the tingles running up and down my spine.
Before I could answer him, a flash of red hair dashed over to him and gave him a hug. It was his mother. I tried not laugh as he struggled to escape from her clutches. I tried to walk away quietly while James tried to soothe his sobbing mother.
"Don't even try and sneak off, Violet." Ginny warned me, squeezing her son one last time before turning to me and giving me a bone-crushing hug.
"You're looking great, Violet! Did you do something to your hair?" Ginny asked, after releasing me.
Before I could answer her, I heard Rose yelling "Oi! Good to see water is thicker than blood in your case, Aunt Ginny!" Ginny rolled her eyes and turned to Rose, giving her a hug. "As if I could forget my favourite niece!" Ginny joked, resulting in several "Hey's!" from offended female relatives of Ginevra Potter.
We all laughed, and Hermione came over and hugged James, her godson.
Hermione let go of James and turned to Rose and myself, ushering us away from the busy platform, saying it was time to leave.
"Bye, Ginny!" Rose and I called. I had long stopped calling her Mrs. Potter. She had insisted I call her Ginny, claiming Mrs. Potter made her feel old, and it seemed far to formal for a woman I saw almost every holiday break. I offered her a smile as Hugo, his girlfriend, Rose, Ron and Hermione all scurried away.
I didn't look at their son. I ran off after Rose and the Weasleys, hoping to Merlin he wouldn't get a chance to corner me like that again.
A/N: Thanks for reading! Please review!
Chapter 6: Trouble
[Printer Friendly Version of This Chapter]
Uh, oh, we're in trouble, we're in trouble
Uh, oh, we're in trouble, something's come along
and it's burst our bubble.
Uh, oh we're in trouble, book us a ticket on the next space shuttle.
Shampoo - Trouble
The first few days at Rose's went by very quickly.
We spent our days shopping for Christmas presents, baking gingerbread men and having snowball wars with Ron and Hugo. Yes, Ron and Hugo. Ron is such an overgrown child, it's hilarious.
Before I knew it, it was Christmas eve, and we were going to floo over to the Burrow to spend the night and Christmas day with all the other Weasleys and the Potters.
Rose was in the shower and Hermione was getting dressed. I wasn't sure where Ron and Hugo were.
I was ready to go, wearing regular dark jeans (I tried to ignore how tight they had become around my waist and the deep red grooves in my skin they left behind) and a grey open-weave jumper over a white tank top. I wore my hair wavy down my back, taking full advantage to show off how shiny it had gotten recently.
I was pacing the living room while I waited for the others, and I thought of James. I wondered how he would react to the news. I had to tell him soon, as I only had about two weeks until my scan. Although I don't want to do tell him now, on Christmas. There was also the fact we weren't speaking, which may make the situation slightly awkward.
I strolled around the downstairs area of the Weasley house. It was obvious they had money, but they didn't really show it off too much. I walked into the library, one of the biggest rooms in the entire house. Rose and Hermione were both total bookworms, so I wasn't surprised to see this room on my first trip to the Weasleys.
I scanned the shelves absent-mindedly after I entered the room.
I then noticed Hermione had categorised her books by genre. I rolled my eyes. She was definitely Rose's mother.
After a few minutes of browsing, I saw a baby name book. Smiling to myself and gently touching my stomach, I opened the book carefully. I flicked through the pages and saw a few names had been highlighted and the pages dog-eared from previous use.
I was just contemplating the possibility of having a boy or girl when I heard footsteps walking down the hall towards the library. I shut the book quickly and I just set it back when Ron entered the room.
The smell of fire whiskey filled the room and I noticed Ron holding a crystal glass. He winked at me as he took a sip.
"I'm going to need it if I'm spending the next few days with my mother" He smiled.
The smell invaded my nostrils and it brought me back to that night.
James looked up as I approached him. I looked back at him, determined not to lose my confidence. I hear Ruby yell "At least fifteen seconds!" at my back.
I shot her a glare but continued walking. I stumbled a little as I reached him and he grabbed my arm to steady me. My arm felt hot where his hands had connected to my skin.
"Hi" I breathed. "Hi" he smiled back at me. I saw Ruby move to stand behind him and tapped her watch playfully.
I sighed. "Sorry about this" I murmured, and reached up to kiss him.
I felt as though my entire insides melted and my knees weakened. I kept my eyes open though, watching Ruby count down from fifteen. After the first few seconds I felt him kiss me back and I could not imagine being any happier. I closed my eyes and just fell into the kiss. I wrapped my arms around his neck and ran my fingers up through his dark hair. It was just as soft as it looked. His hands tightened around my waist and I felt, rather than saw, his smile on my mouth.
I was vaguely aware of Ruby tapping me on the shoulder. I batted her away and grabbed James' collar. I opened my mouth and I felt his tongue invade it. My heart fluttered and I kissed him back just as enthusiastically.
I heard Ron say something else but I was too caught up in James' kiss to actually hear what he said.
"I'm sorry, what was that you said?" I asked him, embarrassed for tuning him out.
He laughed loudly. I smiled at him and he continued. "I was just saying we should tell the the family to hurry up, unless they want to be late."
I agreed with him and went off in search of Rose.
Once we were all lined up and ready to go, I eyed the fireplace warily.
I was a bit hesitant about the flooing, even though when I had asked Madam Pomfrey during one of my many visits to her, full of questions, and she had assured me it was safe until I was at least thirty two weeks pregnant. I stepped into the green flames, but crossed my arms protectively over my stomach before shouting "The Burrow!"
As I stepped into the living area of the burrow, I saw Hermione who had just left before me hug Lily.
I smiled at Lily but her eyes fell to my arms covering my stomach and raised her eyebrows questioningly.
I quickly released my arms and went over to say hi to her just as Rose shot out from the fireplace.
She coughed and brushed the ash off her muggle jeans and jumper
Scorpius rushed over to help her stand up. He was staying with the Potters this Christmas since his parents were of skiing or something. Which means...
"Excuse me," I muttered to Lily, making a beeline to the bathroom before James spotted me and asked to 'talk' again.
It didn't matter though because before I could go anywhere I heard my name being called from across the room.
I looked up to see Harry standing with Ginny by the door to the kitchen. Harry smiled at me brightly. "Violet! I didn't get a chance to talk to you on the platform! How are you?" Harry asked as he gave me a hug.
I forced a smile back at him. "I'm good, How are you?" Apart from the fact I'm pregnant with your grandchild and your son has no idea, I added in my head.
Shit! What if someone was Legilimens? I looked around quickly for a disapproving glare. My eyes darted around the room and I saw Scorpius, Al, Roxanne, Percy, Molly, Lucy, Audrey, Hermione, Bill, Charlie, Ron, Hugo, Arthur and... him. I locked eyes with him. He was chatting with his cousin Dominique, Bill and Fleur's daughter. He looked at me for a second longer when I saw his lips mouth "excuse me" to Dominique.
And he started walking towards me, never breaking eye contact. I squeaked and turned to Harry and Ginny. "Sorry, I have to go check on something." They nodded kindly at me, Ginny gave me a knowing wink and their gazes moved to James who was getting closer and closer by the second.
I dashed off to find Rose who I had seen go into the kitchen. She was in their talking to Nana Molly. Even though I have absolutely no relation to the Weasley family, their grandmother always insisted I call her Nana.
I said hello and Nana Molly gave me a quick hug. I grabbed Rose's arm. "C'mon let's go for a walk" I smiled at her and she smiled back, and we slipped out the kitchen door into the snow.
Dinner that night was uneventful. I sat as far away from James as I physically could.
I started having a good chat with Dominique. She graduated form Hogwarts last year and was now working as a model. She was really nice, surprisingly. You would assume she was a total bitch because she was so beautiful. Her hair was a waterfall of strawberry gold and her eyes were such a beautiful shade of blue.
If I swung that way, I would totally go for her.
I giggled to myself just as I caught Lily's eye from where she was sitting across the long table from me and I smiled at her, realising I hadn't yet had a chance to talk to her.
She returned my smile but she looked questioningly at the gherkins I had nicked from the pantry and I was mashing up with my potatoes.
I know that sounds disgusting, and a few months ago I wouldn't even had considered it, but right now I'm telling you it tastes like heaven.
Actually, if only I had some chocolate sauce to put on top of this, it would be perfect.
I felt my mouth water just thinking about it. I shrugged at Lily and continued eating my dinner.
A few hours later, Ron and Harry waved their wands about the living room, muttering incantations under their breath. Pillows and blankets emerged on the floor around the room. One for each of us teenagers, as there were only enough bedrooms in the Burrow for the adults.
Rose and I took the two 'beds' in the corner, and Lily took the one lying sideways at the bottom of them. There was a couch in the centre of the room that Molly, Percy's daughter claimed for herself.
I wouldn't mind if she was nice about it, but she just jumped on it without saying a word to anyone. I know it sounds terrible, but out of all the Weasleys, I liked her the least.
Her sister Lucy, a very quiet girl with short red hair and big blue eyes, took the bed on the floor beside the couch next to Roxanne, George and Angelina's daughter, who even though was younger than me, I couldn't help but be jealous of her flawless caramel skin and flowing black hair.
Al, Scorpius and Louis took three beds together in the corner of the room, and James and Fred settled down beside each other on the other side of the room.
We all lay down, and quite quickly, I heard the deep breathing and snores (Ahem, Rose I'm looking at you.) all around me. I stayed awake for quite awhile, very aware that the father of my child was only a few metres away from me.
After what was probably hours, I finally fell into a restless sleep.
I awoke groggily the next morning. I looked up at the ceiling and frowned. Where was I? I looked around me and saw all the sleeping teenagers and I smiled to myself.
"Merry Christmas, love." I thought towards the baby as I stretched my arms above my head and yawned. As I twisted over on my side to nudge Rose awake, I felt my stomach turn over and I gagged. Shit. I really hate morning sickness.
I stood up quickly and quietly, jumped over Lily lightly and then dashed silently towards the bathroom. I moved swiftly, opening the door quickly and closing it gently behind me. At Hogwarts I would cast a silencing charm on the room, but since I wasn't of age yet, I couldn't do it here. Nor did I have the time. Plus, everyone was asleep, anyway.
I knelt down and neatly deposited the contents of my stomach into the toilet bowl. When I had finished, I flushed the toilet and wiped my mouth with the back of my hand. I walked towards the mirror and examined myself.
I was deathly pale, with terrible bags underneath my eyes and hair like a scarecrow. Sighing, I leaned forward and took a mouthful of water straight from the tap, gargled and spat it back out again. I pinched my cheeks to try and give myself some colour, and then grabbed my long dark brown hair and braided neatly over my shoulder.
I silently unlocked the door and stepped out into the quiet hallway.
"Were you just getting sick?!"
I jumped about a foot in the air and let out a shriek. I twirled around to see a fourteen year old wearing familiar pink pyjamas covered in fluffy yellow ducks.
I glanced around me quickly to see if anyone had woken up at my outburst. I heard faint snores coming from the living room.
"No" I said solemnly looked Lily in the eyes. I could be a great liar when I wanted to be.
"I just heard you! You were vomiting your guts out!" Lily exclaimed.
"Shh!" I shushed her as I pulled her into the bathroom. "Do you want to wake up the entire house?!" I stage-whispered to her as I locked the door.
"I don't care! Why are you lying?" Lily demanded. "Shut up Lily! everyone will hear you!"
"Why were you getting sick?" Lily asked quietly, a sudden change from her shouts moments before. It seems she inherited her mother's quick mood changes.
"I-" I started when she interrupted me. "Don't even try and lie, Violet. I heard you."
I sighed in resignation. "I think I have a tummy bug or something." I lied very convincingly, looking Lily straight in the eyes.
"If that's true, then why did you lie when I first asked?" Lily stared me down. Fuuuck. I really did not think this through.
I racked my brain for some excuse. "I... um... didn't want people to know I was sick... You know what Nana Molly is like. She, Ginny and Hermione would be flapping all over me." I tried to roll my eyes as believably as I could.
Honestly, I loved it when they fawned all over you like mother hens. My mother wasn't like that.
"Violet,-" Lily took a deep breath as if she was gearing up to say something she didn't want to say.
"Are you... pregnant?"
A/N: Dun dun duuuuuuun... What will happen next? Will Violet reveal? Will James find out? Will Lily forget about what she heard and act like nothing happened?
Wait and see... *cackles evily*
Chapter 7: Lean On Me
[Printer Friendly Version of This Chapter]
A/N: Sorry this update took longer than usual :( Sadly, school is back in session and I have crap loads of homework... Luckily, I am a huge procrastinator, so even though my updates won't be as frequent as before, the will still be very often :D
With that said, read on!
I'm right up the road
I'll share your load
If you just call me
Lean On Me - Bill Withers
Oh. Dear. Merlin.
How could she know? I didn't tell anyone! Nobody knew! I kept this strictly to myself! I didn't tell a single soul, not even Rose! My very best friend!
What do I say?
Deny, deny, deny!
I looked at Lily who was still looking at me, waiting for an answer. I suddenly realised that I was taking much longer than was socially acceptable to answer her.
Well if I didn't look suspicious before, I sure did now!
"A-Are you calling me fat?" I giggled maniacally, trying to push it off as a joke, but even I could hear the cracking in my voice.
"Violet." Lily looked at me sternly. For someone two years my junior she looked surprisingly scary. "I am not calling you fat."
I knew that she wouldn't figure out I was pregnant due to my size. There wasn't any physical evidence I was having a baby, stomach-wise, except a bump so slight you could pass it off as having a big dinner.
"What would make you think I'm pregnant?" I asked calmly, being sure to keep steady eye contact. Lily released a sigh and shrugged. "You've been so weird lately. I don't think I've ever seen you cry before, and you were totally sobbing in the great hall for no reason! Also, when you were flooing, you kept your hands wrapped around yourself, like you were protecting your stomach. And you were eating gherkins with your mashed potatoes, which is just plain disgusting." Lily made a face at the thought of my eccentric food choices. "Plus, you were just sick, and-"
"Okay, okay, I think I get it." I snapped, holding up both my hands.
"Tell me the truth." Lily said, her eyes staring into mine so intently I felt like she could see straight through me. I could feel all kinds of emotions swirling around in my head. Frankly I was sick of hiding it, but there was no way I was ready to tell James. I could barely look the guy in the face. How could I raise a child with him?
It occurred to me then that even though Lily had figured out I was pregnant, she would have no idea who the father was, and honestly I really needed someone to confide in.
So I broke down.
The wall I had put up against her crumbled apart and I let my emotions bubble to the surface. With a sob, I sat down on the edge of the bath and held my head in my hands and began to cry. I felt Lily sit beside me and wrap her arm around me comfortingly. She gently shushed me and made cooing noises, trying to soothe me.
"So it's true, then?" Lily asked, biting her lip, slowly rocking me back and forth. I nodded, still unable to form words through my tears. She made a small "Aw" sound and continued to comfort me.
I looked at her through my tears. "I'm not a slut, you know" Lily looked shocked and hugged me tighter. "I know you aren't a slut, Vi!" she murmured soothingly.
"I've only done it once, I swear" I felt the need to explain myself. I really liked Lily and I didn't want her to think less of me.
"Violet, I am absolutely not doubting you!" Lily insisted.
After another few minutes of comfortable silence in which Lily looked deep in thought, Lily looked at me strangely again. "What?" I asked, feeling confused. Lily giggled. "I forgot it takes two to make a baby..." She trailed off. I rolled my eyes at her, but I knew what she was getting at. "Who's the father?" Lily inquired, leaning forward in interest.
I simply shook my head, indicating I didn't want to talk about it. "Lily, he doesn't even know yet..." I said and she sighed. "I understand, I guess. I would hate to hear I was having a baby from a random person." Lily smiled at me.
I felt so relieved having someone to talk to about all of this. I patted Lily's shoulder and blew out a huge breath. "We should probably go back and wake the others. It is Christmas, after all." I added, as Lily jumped up and grinned. "I almost forgot!" she squealed excitedly and pulled me into a hug.
I buried my head in her wild mane of hair and closed my eyes. "You can't tell anyone, Lily. I'm not ready." I felt her hand rub circles around my back in a comforting gesture. "I know. I'm here for you. If you need anything. Seriously." My eyes filled with tears at her kindness as she pulled away from me. She reached up and wiped an escaped tear away and smiled at me a final time before dashing out of the toilet towards the living room.
I rolled my eyes at her retreating figure as she burst into the room full of sleeping teenagers. "Merry Christmas, one and all!" She cried. I followed her into the room as she grabbed a pillow and began whacking everyone's sleeping face in turn.
This action was met with plenty of moans and a few "Fuck off's" and one "Is she kidding? She's kidding right?" from a very disgruntled looking Fred.
I saw James sitting up groggily, wiping his eyes and ruffling his hair. How can anyone look so hot after just waking up?
I leaned against the door frame watching with amusement as everyone sat up grumpily. I noticed Molly combing her fingers through her frizzy hair and wiping the sleep out of her eyes while giving Scorpius what I guess she thought was a seductive smirk, but in actual fact, made her look extremely constipated.
Scorpius nodded politely at her, but I saw his eyes flicker towards Rose, who was now standing up, as excited as Lily at the idea of gifts. I swear those two will be the death of me. Far too much enthusiasm for their own good.
I smiled at both of them despite myself and crossed the room to Rose and gave her a hug.
"Happy Christmas, babe!" Rose exclaimed, squeezing me tightly. I breathed in her familiar scent of vanilla and roses and muttered a quiet, "You too."
A little while later, we all gathered in a circle next to the tree and Lily and Rose ran between the circle and the tree, carefully examining each package and dumping it in front of the person to whom it belonged. Rose warned us that if anyone attempted to open their presents before we were all in the circle, she would hex their hair off.
I noticed James comb his hair with his fingers, terrified. He had no doubt Rose would stick to her word. Rose wasn't scared of using a bit of underage magic. It was one of the many reasons we were best friends. If you looked in from the outside, you would see a simple, yet attractive curly haired red head with great grades and a book obsession. However, if you knew her personally, you would find she actually had a huge heart, and a fierce streak you wouldn't want to mess with.
When the two of them had finished stripping the bottom of the tree of all its gifts, they both joined us in the circle. They Rose squeezed in to the left of me and Lily sat on my other side, giving my knee a reassuring pat.
Rose announced that we should each open our gifts one person at a time, going around the circle clock-wise, so everyone would get to see the other person's reaction to their gift.
Rose started, opening each of her presents one at a time, thanking everyone. She opened my gift last, and genuinely squealed with delight when she saw a tiny purple pygmy puff sitting in the box. I had punched a few air holes in the top and I only wrapped it last night. Thankfully, he was asleep in the little bed of cotton wool I had made him, as he had been when I wrapped him. I also got her a bunch of books from Flourish and Blotts that she stacked up into a pile to read later.
Picking presents for Rose was easy. She stable, predictable. I got presents for everyone in the Potter/Weasley clan, even the few members I wasn't very close to. I thought it was only polite since I pretty much crashed all their family gatherings. It was quite easy to buy presents for the people I knew well, and for the others, I played it safe with gift cards or socks.
Don't look at me like that. Socks are very practical.
I knew I had to get James a gift as well. I didn't want to get him anything too personal, but I also didn't want it to look like I didn't put any thought into it, either.
While thinking of possible gifts for him, my mind kept wandering back to that night in the Three Broomsticks.
After James and I kept snogging for a good ten minutes, James began kissing my neck, and I couldn't believe what was happening. James Potter, my crush of the last year was kissing me.
Insert fangirl squeal here.
I noticed some old men sitting in a booth leering at us. I winced and looked away from them. Maybe this was getting a bit too heated for public.
I pushed James away from me and he stared at me with those puppy dog eyes. He looked hurt. I felt my heart break a little bit. "We should probably go back to Hogwarts." I had to yell to be heard over the chatter of students. My head was already starting to ache.
I leaned up to James and pressed my lips to his ear. "We could be alone..." I still had to raise my voice slightly to be heard. When I pulled away I saw his eyes light up like it was Christmas and he grabbed my hand.
"I know a shortcut!" He exclaimed. He waved goodbye to Fred who was sitting with a group of guys. He smirked and nodded at him. I caught Ruby's eye as James led me out the door of the crowded bar, her face totally shocked. I shrugged at her and she rolled her eyes, shook her head and smiled at me.
James led me to Honeydukes, the really old sweet shop. I was confused as to why we were in a practically empty shop, but James didn't stop moving. He led me somewhere dark and we walked for a while before emerging out of a statue somewhere in Hogwarts, although I can't remember which one exactly.
James grabbed my hand again and pulled me over his shoulder and into his dorm. I have no recollection of walking from the statue to the common room.
James laid me down on his bed and kissed me lightly. He removed his grey wool button-down coat and threw it over a chair. James let out an unexpected groan. I asked him what was wrong, even though speaking made my head throb.
"I forgot my scarf!" He exclaimed, ran his hand through his messy hair. I stood up from the bed and swayed over to him kissed him again. "Forget about the scarf" I whispered. He kissed me back, but pulled away after a few seconds. "But it was my Gryffindor scarf!" James moaned. I kissed him again and pulled off my top revealing my lacy bra.
James let out a moan and I whispered "Forget about the scarf." again. This time he smiled and nodded and began kissing me passionately once again.
Everything that happened beyond that point is pretty hazy, but I remember enough to be sure of what happened. All I know for sure is I woke up in his bed the next morning, the curtains drawn around us, with the worst headache of my life. I snuck out of that room as fast as I possibly could, and we haven't even glanced in each other's direction since then.
So when it came around to James' turn, he opened my gift first, although I don't think he knew it was from me at first. He carefully opened the card attached to the gift, which said simply, 'To James, From Violet.'
He glanced up at me before her tore open the gold ribbon and red wrapping paper. He laid them aside and lifted the large, shallow, black box to reveal a red and gold stripped Gryffindor scarf. I had 'James' embroidered onto the end of it in gold thread.
He removed the scarf and wrapped it around his neck several times, over his pyjamas. James let out a laugh, obviously remembering that night. I let out a giggle at his reaction and everyone went quiet and turned to me.
All was silent for a moment before James too burst into laughter. I joined him, giggling hysterically. James and I just sat there, at opposite sides of the circle, laughing our asses off. Everyone stayed silent watching us in surprise.
Everyone's shocked reaction made me laugh harder. They knew James and I hadn't really been speaking properly in a while, so I'm sure this was quite weird for them to watch. I was on my hands and knees, pounding the floor with my fist, tears of laughter streaming down my face.
Lily looked at me incredulously and muttered something under her breath that sounded like "Hormones."
I punched her lightly in the arm but didn't stop my laughter. I noticed James lying on his back, laughing so hard his face had turned a deep shade of red.
I crawled across the circle as he sat up, still chuckling. He saw me approaching and looked a bit frightened. I rolled my eyes as I reached him, and pulled him into a hug. I felt his body tense up in surprise as I wrapped my arms around his neck. "Friends?" I muttered in his ear.
"Friends." he sighed, pulling me closer.
I loved all of my gifts. Rose got me the cutest amethyst gemstone hanging from a gold chain. It was only a few shades lighter than my eyes. After I had opened it, Rose told me how when she saw it, it instantly reminded her of me.
My eyes threatened to tear up at her thoughtfulness as I engulfed her in a bear hug.
James had gotten me an adorable bracelet with a crystal dangling from it. When I opened it, I smiled widely. The stone was my favourite colour, a bright turquoise.
When I told James this fact, he smiled awkwardly, and muttered a small "I know." and he blushed slightly. I noticed Fred smirk knowingly at me, and I wrinkled my eyebrows in confusion.
James then explained to me that I had already told him my favourite colour, my confusion deepened. After a moment of silence, realisation struck me. I told him that night.
When I let out a 'Ooh' and I felt my face flush. James turned just as red as me and I gave him a one-armed hug from beside him, where he had squeezed in after our reconciliation. I thanked him anyway and gave him a nervous smile.
Nobody seemed to notice this awkward encounter as everyone began chatting amongst themselves about their different presents.
When all the adults emerged much later in the morning, all us teenagers were lounging around the Burrow, wearing our jumpers from Nana Weasley. I gave Harry and Ginny their gifts as soon as they both emerged from upstairs (together, of course) It's very rare to see one of them without the other.
Al, James and Lily all grimaced when Harry pecked Ginny on the cheek. I smiled. I thought it was lovely.
Harry laughed at my gift of a hairbrush and comb set. I teased him about his messy hair (which James had inherited) even though I actually liked their hair. Harry had become such a father figure to me over the past years that I felt so comfortable joking with him.
After I was released from Harry's fatherly hug, I handed Ginny her gift, wrapped in pink tissue paper and a pearl-white ribbon. She opened it carefully, totally opposite from the way James had.
Ginny gasped in surprise when she opened the the present to reveal two delicate silver tear drop earrings, with accents of teal running through the design. When I saw these in a muggle shop in London with Rose last week, I immediately thought of Ginny, and how the teal would compliment her red hair beautifully.
Her gasp startled me though, and I began to ramble nervously. "Oh Merlin, you don't like them, do you? I'm so sorry Ginny, I know they aren't magical or anything but I saw these and I just thought of you, and how great the would go with your hair. Oh no... You can exchange them if you want! Here, I'll take them back to the shop for you and get you something else. Is there anything you want? I know it's Christmas but I'm sure there must be at least one shop open toda-" My insane rambling was cut short by Ginny pulling me close and hugging me gently, which was a change from her usual bone-crushers.
"They're fabulous, sweetie. I absolutely love them. I just can't get over how thoughtful you are!" Ginny muttered into my hair, which was still braided over my shoulder as it had been since this morning.
She squeezed me gently one final time, before releasing me and pecking me on the cheek. My eyes welled up with tears yet again, just as the door to the kitchen burst open with a bang.
"Lily, love!" Ginny smiled at her daughter, but still held my hand with such motherly care. I wanted to burst into tears. Soon, everyone was bound to find out I was pregnant (I mean, come on, it's not like I'm shrinking) and then the baby's true parentage would be revealed, Ginny would hate me for ruining her son's life and never speak to me again.
Lily smiled warmly at her mother, which was a change from the usual eye-rolling. I guess the Christmas spirit was really affecting her.
"I was just looking for Violet. I couldn't see her anywhere and I was just wondering what she was up to..." Lily trailed off and turned her gaze to me and gave me a worried smile.
Her concern touched me, and I felt so grateful to have her looking out for me. I smiled reassuringly back at her. "I'm fine, Lils"
Lily opened her mouth as if she was about to say something, but she was interrupted by a loud banging and a blur of red and green come storming into the kitchen and began waving a wand around and muttering incantations.
I watched in amazement as Nana Molly charmed the dishes to dance through the air and begin polishing themselves, as the vegetables magically separated, as though someone invisible were standing there chopping them.
Nana Molly gave all of us a self-satisfied smirk as she continued to conduct the items in the kitchen as though they were an orchestra.
She did this every year when she prepared Christmas dinner, but it still managed to amaze me every time. I have yet to meet anyone who could do any household spell half as well as Nana Molly.
Harry grinned at her and taking Ginny's hand, they departed from the kitchen together, muttering something about getting everyone's presents.
Lily walked over to me and wrapped a protective arm around me, and although she was a good head and a half shorter than me, she felt just like a big sister.
"Thanks for your gift, Lils. I love them." I said as I fingered the red mittens I was wearing on both hands. Lily laughed. "Stop thanking me!" She exclaimed cheerfully.
"It's not just the mittens that I'm thankful for" I said, tightening my grip on Lily.
She smiled brightly at me, but eyed Nana Molly wearily. Nana Molly didn't seem to be paying any attention to us, too busy preparing the Christmas dinner/feast.
"Follow me" Lily muttered under her breath, walking quietly out the back door into the snow. I walked after her obediently. Nana Molly beamed at me as I walked past her towards the door. I smiled back at her just as widely. I love Nana Molly.
Lily was only a few seconds in front of me and turned around to face me when a smile emerged on her face.
I didn't get a chance to complete my sentence, as a huge snowball came flying at me and whacked me in the back of the head.
I shuddered as the ice slid down the back of my pyjama shirt. I swung around to see James and Fred snickering hysterically, fully clothed in boots and padded jackets.
"No fair!" I squealed as I bent down to pick up a bundle of snow in my mitten-covered hands.
"Shit! Run, run, run!" I heard Rose scream to the two boys from the doorway to the garden. She knew how seriously I took snow ball fights. I clasped the ball of snow in my hands and I concentrated extremely hard. Slowly I raised my arm. James had taken Rose's advice and had sprinted off to attack Lily.
Fred however, was a less quick on his feet.
I aimed for Fred's retreating figure and threw. The ball hit him square on the back of the head. I burst out laughing at the look of shock on his face as he turned to face me.
I giggled again and began sprinting off in the direction of Lily, who was now on James' back, trying desperately to cover his eyes with her small hands. James was laughing, gently trying to get her off. I know for a fact if it were anyone but his little sister clinging to him, they would be on the ground with their face stuffed in the snow, but James was so gentle with his baby sister.
Taking advantage of this position, I grabbed a handful of snow and threw it straight into James' face.
"Who did that?!" James bellowed, still trying to release Lily's tight grip. Lily and I screamed with laughter. I noticed Rose and Albus had joined in, along with Roxanne and Louis. Together they all were attacking Fred.
Apparently this was war.
After we had been running around in the garden for almost an hour, Lily and I were completely soaked and shivering, given the fact that we were wearing only our pyjamas, and mittens, in my case.
Anxious to go dry off and warm up, I dragged Rose inside with me, and Lily, who was just as wet as I was, saw this and obviously thought it was a good idea, and ran after us into the house. We walked through the kitchen into the living room, where all the adults were sitting around chatting.
They all looked at us with shocked expressions on their faces. George Weasley burst out laughing at the sight if us and all the adults began to smile. Rose laughed along with them, comfortable in her heavy coat and woolen scarf.
I smiled at them sheepishly and Lily left the living room, heading upstairs to go and get ready for dinner. I noticed all the adults were wearing Nana Molly's knitted jumpers with each of their initials added on.
Although Ron was looking rather grumpy, pulling uncomfortably at the hem of his maroon jumper.
"Er... so we'll be going then!" I said cheerfully, inserting my arm into the crook of Rose's elbow, and pulled her up the rickety stairs to get ready for dinner.
A/N: Sooo... James and Violet are friends now. Thoughts? Predictions? Reviews make me happy! :)
Thanks for reading,
Chapter 8: Umbrella
[Printer Friendly Version of This Chapter]
“Now that it's raining more than ever
Know that we'll still have each other
You can stand under my umbrella.”
After a hot shower and change of clothes, Rose and I stayed up in one of the spare rooms lounging on on the double bed and chatting casually while she did my makeup.
Even though Rose and I were so used to not wearing makeup, and when we did, we did it by magic, I agreed to let her experiment on me.
While Rose was concentrating on my face, I contemplated how to let her down easy when she revealed her work. I was expecting a total clown-face disaster. When she had finished, I had a false smile prepared as she held a mirror to her chest. When she turned the mirror around to face me, I was very pleasantly suprised.
She had put a light layer of concealer over the blemishes on my face, and she just gave my eyelashes a sweep of mascara and handed me a tube of cherry chap stick to put on myself. Overall, I didn't look as though I were wearing makeup, except for the fact my pale skin was now flawless and my eyelashes looked much longer than their humble reality.
"Wow Rose! You're actually really good!" I smiled warmly and her and she smiled bashfully back. She murmured a small thanks and started packing up the small amount of cosmetic products spread all over the bed.
As I watched her, I brushed out my hair and rolled it into a slightly messy ballerina bun on the top of my head.
Rose was just pulling her frizzy hair into a ponytail when we heard Albus scream from the bottom of the stairs, "Mum says would the two of you stop mucking about and get your arses down here now!" Rose and I smirked when we heard Ginny shriek, "That's not what I said, Albus!" and a soft whack, followed by a loud 'OW!" Ginny Potter hadn't lost any of her ferocity with age.
Rose rolled her eyes and nodded at me. "We should probably go down." I nodded in agreement and Rose made her way to the door, wearing a knitted dress with a scoop neck and a pair of my boots.
"Wait!" I warned her as I picked up the knitted maroon jumper with a large gold 'R' on it, an exact replica of her father's. Tossing it at Rose, she let out a loud groan. I rolled my eyes and shook my head at her.
"It's so cute!" I insisted after Rose pulled the jumper on over her dress. She scoffed when she caught a glimpse of herself in the full length mirror hanging on the door.
I smiled as I pulled on my own jumper, a blue affair with a grey 'V'. Careful not to damage my hair or makeup, I straightened out the large jumper and checked my face in the mirror to make sure everything was intact, and I was relieved to see it was.
Rose moaned again and I turned to face her to see she was eyeing me. "What?" I asked.
"How do you manage to look good in everything? It's so bloody unfair!" Rose stamped her foot like a child and I bit my lip to stop myself from laughing at her.
"First of all, I do not look good in everything. You know as well as better than anyone I cannot pull off leggings. Do you not remember the disaster outfit of November Hogsmeade '19? Second of all, Rose Weasley, you are possibly the most gorgeous girl I know! Stop doubting yourself!" I held her by her shoulders and shook her gently.
Rose pursed her lip and furrowed her brow.and turned to face the mirror again. She pulled impatiently the hem of her jumper. "I feel so... frumpy" Rose explained. "I mean, come on, I look awful. I would I even stand a chance with Scor-" Rose stopped mid-sentence and bit her lip.
I raised one eyebrow. "...Scor what, Rose?" I teased playfully.
Rose blushed so red I thought her head was about to explode. I giggled loudly. "I knew it! I knew it! You fancy him!" I jumped onto the bed and began dancing. "Rose and Scorpius sittin' in a tree, K-I-S-S-I-N-G!" I sang as I jumped off the bed and gave Rose a hug. During my whole performance Rose started laughing and she hugged me back.
"You can never tell ANYONE" Rose threatened. I crossed my heart with my right hand and grinned. "Scout's honour!" Rose rolled her eyes at me again and grabbed the door handle and exited the room, heading for the stairs. I followed after her, after quickly dusting off my black skinny jeans.
As we entered the dining room, which had been magically expanded in order to fit the large clan, I saw Victoire had arrived with baby Remus. She and Teddy had just celebrated their one year wedding anniversary with a baby boy, named in honour of Teddy's father.
Rose and I ran to her immediately and exchanged hugs. Rose complimented Victoire on her figure, saying she looked amazing for having a four-month old child.
I was bent over the pram to look at Remus. He was so adorable. Obviously. I mean seriously, look at his parents. Victoire was part Veela, and Teddy was metamorphmagus, so he could choose his own level of attractiveness.
Remus gave me a toothless grin as I played peek-a-boo with him. Our game was interrupted by my name being called from behind me.
I spun around to see Teddy standing there, his hair a bright blue. His eyes lit up when they met mine, and I threw myself at him, giving him a big hug. He laughed in my ear and hugged me back, lifting me off the ground, so he didn't have to bend. "Violet!" he greeted me warmly.
Teddy and I met at my first Weasley Christmas. He and I hit it off instantly, being the only non related members, even though he was six years older than me.
I heard Victoire laughing good-humouredly at our embrace. "Seems as though water runs thicker than blood in your case, Teddy!" I heard Rose mutter. I giggled to myself. It seemed as if she said that a lot.
Teddy laughed out loud, placed me back on the floor and turned to Rose and opened his arms to her dramatically. She laughed and accepted his outstretched arms.
"Technically, you and I aren't related." Teddy added as he let go of Rose. Rose pondered this momentarily and she nodded. "But you are married to my cousin, though." Teddy beamed at Victoire and wrapped his arm around her small waist. "That I am" he pecked Victoire on her cheek and she blushed.
"Aww!" Rose and I squealed in unison, and I clasped my hands over my heart. Victoire smacked him lovingly on the arm.
"So... How's life with children?" I asked them, trying to seem nonchalant, picking imaginary dust from my shoulder.
Teddy looked at me and sighed. "Tiring. I get no sleep anymore!" Victoire laughed at this and turned to me. "Do not listen to him, Violet. He sleeps like a log while I get up with the baby in the middle of the night."
Teddy blushed. "Do not!" he exclaimed childishly. "Do to!" Victoire shot back. They continued like this for a while when I turned to Rose.
"Let's leave them to it, shall we?" I winked at her and she grinned back. We walked over to Albus and Scorpius who were standing in the corner next to a potted plant, obviously trying to avoid small talk with relatives.
Scorpius' back straightened up as he saw Rose and I approaching. Rose's cheeks turned a pale pink. Albus and I shared a look. Grinning, I gently pushed Rose so she stumbled into Scorpius' arms. He caught her firmly, and concern showed in his eyes. "Are you alright?" Scorpius asked her.
"Yeah.. I, um.. Yeah. Totally!" Rose stammered, as her blush deepened.
Albus smirked at them and then looked at me. He subtly cocked his head, indicating we should leave them alone. I nodded slightly and took a tiny step to my left. This movement went unnoticed by the nervous couple who were still apologising to each other.
Albus copied my steps, and we slowly backed away from the two of them.
As soon as enough distance was put between us and the couple, we turned and walked normally to stand together near the head of the huge table.
Albus and I were in the same year at school, but he was a few months younger than me. We were friends, but I never got very close to him. We stood together discussing our different classes and teachers. Al was just laughing at my impersonation of Professor McGonagall when I noticed James enter the room.
I watched him carefully as he gracefully walked towards Teddy and Victoire. He kissed Victoire's cheek and gave Teddy a brotherly hug.
He bent down to the pram and smiled at little Remus. I unintentionally smiled too as I watched him. I think I felt my ovaries skip a beat.
I turned back to Albus, not wanting him to think I had been watching his brother.
Albus was telling me about a prank he and Scorpius had played on the teachers before we left for Christmas. I honestly wasn't really listening to him, but I did my best to laugh at the right time, and to keep my eyes on him, not his insanely hot brother.
No. I am not thinking about James that way. He is a friend. A friend, I tell you.
Lily then entered the room wearing her 'L' jumper and came over to us. She smiled at me and rested a hand on my arm. "How are you feeling?" she asked kindly. "Great!" I answered, although honestly it wasn't true. I kept thinking about how this was most likely my last Christmas with the Weasleys and Potters and how, soon enough, they would all hate me.
Albus opened his mouth to say something but was cut off by Nana Molly entering the room and declaring the feast ready for consumption.
Everyone who wasn't already in the dining room came in and joined us. We all squashed in, trying to make room for everyone to fit the long table.
I caught James' eye as Lily dragged me to the table and he smiled. "Sit with me?" He mouthed.
I felt my stomach erupt with butterflies, and inwardly I screamed, "No! He's my FRIEND! Nothing more!"
Except the father of my child. Whoops.
I nodded at him and he beamed at me. I made my way across the room to him and Lily followed me, and Albus went and sat next to Scorpius on the other side of the table.
I noted with pleasure that Rose was sitting on Scorpius' other side.
James held out my chair for me and I smiled at him. Lily took the seat next to me, and James took the one on my left. Fred took the one on James' other side, and Rose sat directly opposite me. I raised my eyebrows at her and looked from her to Scorpius and back again, trying silently to convey the message 'He totally fancies the pants off you.' without being too obvious.
She shook her head violently, eyeing all her Weasley relations, who have made no secret of their hatred for the Malfoy family, although everyone got on well with Scorpius.
James looked at Rose questioningly but she dropped her eyes to inspect her empty plate as if it were the most interesting thing she had ever seen.
James turned to me. "What's going on?" he asked me.
I stayed silent for a moment and shifted my gaze to Ginny, who's eyes were flicking from James, to me, to James and back to me again. There seemed to be some sort of emotion in her big brown eyes. Excitement, it looked like.
I turned back to face James and looked him straight in the eye. "I have no idea what you're talking about." I said seriously.
James raised one eyebrow. "Shouldn't friends tell each other things?" he asked jokingly.
I was about to retort when Nana Molly reentered the room, this time levitating a huge turkey on a silver platter, and several steaming bowls full of chopped vegetables, mashed potatoes, and several gravy boats.
James rolled his eyes and let out a big breath. "Never mind. I will find out what's going on, though." James's warm eyes held a glint of determination and I stuck my tongue out at him, which made him chuckle at my childishness.
Lily patted me on the back and I turned to smile at her.
It seemed as though things were looking up. James and I were friends, Lily was so supportive, Rose and Scorpius were finally starting to make a move on each other, and now I would get to eat the most delicious meal ever.
Once again, though, I spoke too soon.
As soon as the huge turkey was lowered onto the table right in front of me, the glorious smell that filled my nostrils, which would have made my mouth water at just the thought of tasting it a few months ago, now made my stomach lurch and my throat gag.
Well I guess it's safe to say the baby doesn't like turkey.
As soon as I felt my stomach flip, I knew there was no avoiding displaying my breakfast to the entire Weasley clan.
That doesn't mean I didn't try.
As soon as I realised the smell of the turkey was causing me to gag, I immediately held my breath, determined not to breathe in the scent.
I kept my eyes firmly on my plate in front of me, and clamped my mouth shut. I desperately repeated "Not now. Not now. Not now." over and over in my head, willing the baby to understand.
I felt beads of sweat begin to form on my forehead from the pure effort of keeping my previous meal where it belonged.
I let out a large breath, unable to hold on to it anymore. As the smell assaulted my nostrils again, I knew there was no helping it.
I clamped my hand over my mouth and let out a strangled groan. The entire table turned to me to see what could possibly be wrong with me. Not knowing what to do, I looked desperately to Lily, who was sitting on my right. She looked into my eyes, confused, and I tried to explain my problem without speaking.
Lily's eyes lit up with understanding. "Quick! Someone of age! Anyone! Conjure up a bucket or something!" Lily screeched to the entire table, not addressing anyone in particular. I saw Harry wave his wand quickly, and a silver basin appeared beside me.
Finally giving in, I released my hold on my mouth, and was violently sick into the pristine basin. I knew everyone was watching me with morbid curiosity, but I couldn't bring myself to look up at them.
When I had finished emptying my stomach of it's contents, I wiped my mouth with the back of my hand, before looking up guiltily to the large table.
Instead of the disgusted looks I was expecting, I saw every face was filled with concern. "Sorry..." I apologised. I felt my cheeks warm was a blush spread over my cheeks.
I noticed James' hand was resting comfortingly on my back. I felt like my skin was burning under his warm touch. I jerked my body away from him out of instinct.
Careful to only breathe from my mouth, I saw Ginny had stood from her seat towards the top of the table, and was now approaching me, worry etched all over her face. Lily grabbed hold of my hand and squeezed. I slowly stood as Harry vanished the bucket I had just... erm... used.
"Are you okay, Violet?" Harry asked as Ginny reached me, and wrapped a motherly arm around my shoulders. I realised Rose had followed her mother around to my side of the table, and she rested her hand on my shoulder gently.
"I think I just need some air." I said quietly. I saw Teddy stand from his seat on the right of Lily and I saw his eyes pierce into mine. "Maybe we should take you to St. Mungo's?" he suggested, his concern shining through his chocolate coloured eyes.
I was briefly touched by his kindness, before I realised what going to St. Mungo's would entail. They would examine me, realise I was pregnant, tell Ginny, who in turn would tell Harry, who would tell the entire family, including James, who would do the math, realise he was the father, sink into a deep depression, Lily would put two and two together, tell everyone, they would blame me for James' depression and alcoholism (he would take up drinking to numb the pain) , Harry would kill me, in turn killing the baby.
And that was the best-case scenario.
"No! No!" I bellowed. I tried to lower my voice and appear calm. "I'm fine. I think it's just something I ate. I just need some air." I insisted, but nobody looked convinced.
Lily stood up. "I'll take her outside." I nodded gratefully at her. Ginny bit her lip, still considering if it was the right thing to do. Rose removed her hand from my shoulder and smiled at her aunt. "I'll go too. You guys should eat the dinner before it gets cold"
Ginny nodded. "Alright. Take care of her. If she gets dizzy or anything, bring her straight back." Rose and Lily nodded in unison. I saw Molly II roll her eyes at us. "Clearly she's fine! Can we not just eat now?" She asked impatiently. I noticed everyone except Percy and Audrey shoot her a dirty look.
Rose placed her small hand on my back and started to lead me out the door, and Lily followed close behind. We stopped in our tracks when we heard another chair scraping against the wooden floor. I turned back to see James was now standing too. "I'll come too." He said.
I shook my head forcefully. "That's not necessary." I said. I did not want him to come with us.
"That's what friends are for, right?" he smiled cheekily at me and I physically fought off the blush I felt threatening to crawl over my face. Damn pale skin.
I tried to look impassive as I eyed his handsome face. "Sure" I shrugged, acting like I couldn't care less.
George let out a loud belly laugh. "There won't be anyone left at the table!"
"Save us some dinner for later." Rose said, ignoring her uncle's comment, as she continued to lead me towards the door. I heard James increase his speed in order to catch up with us as we headed out to the garden.
Although the garden at the burrow was covered in a blanket of snow which covered all the wild flowers and beautiful grass, it was still one of my favourite places in the world. The entire Burrow had such a homey feel. You could almost sense the magic.
As soon as we were outside, I let out all the stale air I had been holding and breathed a sigh of content as I filled my lungs with the cool, crisp air.
Lily started to laugh, but covered it quickly with a coughing fit. I glared daggers at her as I bent over with my hands on my knees, still breathing deeply.
"Are you okay, Vi?" Rose asked again, casually rubbing my back. "Yeah. I told you already, I'm fine!" I insisted. James chuckled and we all looked at him.
"You look terrible, Violet." He said. Rose and Lily looked at him angrily. "What kind of thing is that to say?" Rose demanded.
James still smiled gently at me as he conjured a mirror. Damn, I forgot he was of age.
"I speak the truth." he said sarcastically as I looked at my reflection. He was right. My hair had loosened and the bun was now at a weird angle, my face was so pale it was almost as white as the snow and held a slight green tint. My chap stick was smudged slightly and there were deep circles under my eyes.
I groaned. "It's no wonder they wanted to send me to St. Mungo's!" I cried. James chuckled and I frowned at him which just made him laugh harder.
Rose licked her thumb and wiped at my chin, trying to remove the pink chap stick. "Roooose!" I wailed like an infant while Lily and James continued to laugh at my expense.
Rose kissed my cheek and gave me a satisfied smirk. "All gone!" She sang. Lily began pinching my cheeks in an attempt to bring some colour back to my face.
I batted her hands away. I wrapped my arms around myself in an attempt to keep myself warm out in the snow. Luckily Nana Molly's jumpers were extremely thick and did a fantastic job of conserving body heat.
Rose and James had ran out into the large garden and were chasing each other around playfully. Lily rolled her eyes at them and walked over to a wooden bench and wiped off the snow that was piled up.
She sat down carefully and patted the space beside her. I walked up slowly and sat next to her. Rose and James had begun throwing snow at each other as they ran around the garden.
"How far along are you?" Lily whispered quietly. My eyes flashed to Rose and James, to ensure they weren't listening. Even if we weren't whispering, I doubt they could have heard us.
"Just turned three months" I whispered to her. Lily nodded. "That's what I guessed. When are you going to tell... the father?"
I stiffened. "Lily..." I began.
"I'm not asking you to tell me who it is. It's just... You won't be able to hide it much longer. The longer you wait, they worse it will be." Lily interrupted.
I bit my lip at her intelligent words. I often forget Lily's only fourteen years old.
"I get that. I'm going to tell him, I just-" I abruptly stopped talking when I saw James run up to us.
"You starting to feel better, Vi?" he asked, shaking his hair out like a wet dog. Rose ran up behind him and threw herself down on the bench beside me.
"Yep. Probably just ate something." I smiled up at him, shading my eyes from the sun,which was brighter than you would expect on a December afternoon.
"You ready to go inside yet?" Rose asked. The thought of going back into that room made me want to gag. "Um... no. But you guys go ahead, eat your dinner. I'll come in in a minute" Rose nodded kindly at me and patted my shoulder.
Lily, too, stood. The two of them made their way to the door. Lily turned again and raised a hand to stop to sun from blinding her.
"You coming, James?" she asked. James looked at me inquisitively but shook his head. "Nah. I'm going to stay with Violet for awhile."
"You really don't have to. I'm fine.'' James held up his hand to stop me talking. "I want to." His intense gaze burned through me and I felt tingles run up and down my back.
Lily shrugged and smiled. "Suit yourself!" She cried and inserted an arm into the crook of Rose's elbow. I noticed Rose wink at me but I shook my head. It wasn't like that to him.
James sat down next to me and raised his wand to Rose. Before I could demand what the hell he thought he was doing, he shot a spell at her back.
I opened my mouth to scream when I saw Rose was perfectly fine, just dry and no longer covered in snow.
She gave him a grateful smile and he smiled back. "Didn't think Nana would be very happy if you destroyed her gift to you on the day you got it!" He called to Rose. She laughed and called, "I'll get a new one next year!" over her shoulder and James chuckled.
Rose and Lily disappeared into the house. I pulled my hair down and combed through it with my fingers. "You don't have to stay with me, you know." I muttered as I pulled my hair back into a ponytail.
James fiddled with a worn leather bracelet on his left wrist. "I know." He said, seemingly less confident as he had when we were with other people.
We stayed in silence for a few moments. I couldn't stop thinking about Lily's words. She was right. The longer I waited, the worse it would get. I knew it would all come out eventually, and the sooner the better, right?
I was just trying to convince myself of this when James spoke. "Are we going to talk about... it?"
I felt all the air leave my body at once. He knew. Oh my Merlin, he knew about the baby.
I gasped loudly and James gave me a look. "We can't avoid the elephant in the room, Violet."
I opened my mouth to say something but he cut me off. "You can't deny... what happened." James said determinedly.
Wait, what? Realisation took over and I literally sighed in relief. He was talking about sleeping together, not our baby.
"I'm not denying it James," I began, "I just think we should move on." I saw James grimace. Oh Merlin, was it that bad? It caused him actual pain to think about that night?
I couldn't remember it clearly at all, but I often had flashes of memory, and from what I remember, it was pretty amazing. I remember calling out his name in pure ecstasy.
Obviously the feeling wasn't mutual.
"Is that what you want? To move on?" James asked, looking me in the eyes for the first time since we were left alone. I tried not to wince at the thought of how much he obviously regretted that night.
"Yes." I whispered, looking down to my knees. I saw James close his eyes briefly and nod to himself.
"Okay then. Friends, though, right?" He smiled at me.
"Absolutely." I agreed. This was for the best. Now I knew for sure he had no romantic feelings for me, and vice versa.
Finally we had closure.
A/N: Thoughts? Please review! :)
Chapter 9: Jump then Fall
[Printer Friendly Version of This Chapter]
A/N: Hi. I'm really sorry about this chapter. I'm not very happy with it to be honest, but it has been almost a month since I updated, so I thought it would be best just to update the story :) enjoy and please review :)
Over the next few days leading up to New Years and after our reconciliation, I found myself spending a lot of time with James. I kept trying to work up the courage to tell him I was pregnant, but as soon as the words where about to pass my lips, I would chicken out.
Lily's words were echoing around my head. I knew I only had less than two weeks until my fifteen week scan, and I knew I had to James by then.
The Potter's were planning a New Year's ball, an event of epic proportions. Almost everyone in the Ministry of Magic had been invited, as Harry was head of the Auror department, not to mention everyone's hero.
The Weasley's were invited too, of course, due to their celebrity status, as well as the fact Ron and Hermione were both dedicated members of the Ministry.
The ball was going to be held in the Potter's mansion, and Rose had insisted on going dress shopping for the event, even though she had more than enough evening dresses as her parents always dragged her along to Ministry events such as this.
She announced we would be spending the day in Diagon Alley, and possibly muggle London, over breakfast which we were sharing with the Potter children, as well as Hugo and her parents.
"Uh... we are?" I asked, raising one eyebrow. James and Albus chuckled at me and Rose gave them both her famous death glare, which shut them up immediately.
"Yup!" She popped the 'P' and took a bite from the buttered sluce of toast on her plate.
"Why?" I moaned.
"The Potter's ball is tomorrow, and as much as I know you would like to go in tracksuit bottoms, a ratty t-shirt and no makeup, it simply won't be acceptable!" She lectured, and I rolled my eyes at her.
Ron smiled at me sympathetically and I sighed. "Can Lily come?" I asked, nodding at Lily who was sitting between her two brothers.
"Of course! And we're meeting Ruby, too, in twenty minutes, so I suggest you get dressed." Rose said.
I groaned again. "You're kidding right? Ruby is, like, a hundred times worse than you when it comes to shopping!" I cried, much to James' amusement.
I pointed my toast threateningly at him. "You want to laugh again?" I asked menacingly, narrowing my eyes.
He bit his lip to hold back laughter (Oh Merlin, his lips... ) "No, Ma'am." He muttered solemnly.
Twenty minutes later I dashed downstairs after changing from my pyjama shorts and huge t-shirt into a pair of jeans and a light blue button down shirt.
I ignored the dirty look Rose gave me as she examined her watch. One at a time, each of us took a handful of floo powder, threw it into the fireplace and stepped into the green flames
A few hours later, and we are heading into our tenth dress shop in a quest to find 'the one' as Ruby called it.
div>We had been chatting about random topics all morning, but the most interesting of all of them was the fact Lily had developed a crush on someone at Hogwarts.
"Come on! Just tell us who it is!" Ruby demanded as the flicked through a rack of dresses.
Rose nodded as she held up a long pink dress to the light to get a closer look. She grimaced and put it back on the rack quickly.
I was sitting on a plush red stool, watching Ruby flick through the dresses with such speed her hands almost blurred. Rose was doing the same, but she was much slower, and stopped every so often to give a dress closer inspection.
Lily was walking around the large shop, but she didn't seem to be paying much attention to any dresses, as she was blushing deeply and staring very hard at the floor.
"You don't know him.'' Lily muttered, almost incoherently, and Ruby snorted.
"You've already told us he goes to Hogwarts. We go to Hogwarts! So, obviously, we do know him." Rose pointed out, and picked up a green floor-length gown and gave it a smile. She draped it over her arm but still continued to look through the racks.
"I don't want to tell you until he makes a move first. You lot would probably hold him at wand-point and force him to." Lily sighed, and reached up to examine a grey purse covered in studs. I thought it was hideous but Lily seemed to like it.
"What do you mean, make a move?" Ruby asked, waggling her eyebrows suggestively. Rose and I both frowned, and Lily blushed.
"Don't you even think about it, young lady! You're only fourteen!" Rose said while she strutted to the back of the shop where there was a small platform surrounded by mirrors, a few chairs and two little dressing rooms off to the side.
I noticed Rose had three dresses in her arms as she headed for one of the changing rooms.
"Of course not! I have no intention of giving up my virginity anytime soon." Lily claimed, giving me a gentle smile.
I smirked at her. "Good idea. All... that does is create trouble"
Ruby nodded knowingly and I noticed she had two dresses in her arms. "Violet's right. You don't want to lose it to the wrong person, or before you're ready."
I rolled my eyes. "Could you be anymore hypocritical right now?" I smirked as Lily raise her eyebrows.
"How is she being hypocritical?" Lily asked me, before turning to Ruby. "Who did you lose yours to, Rubes?"
Ruby mumbled something and looked away from us.
"Tommy Browne!" I exclaimed and I rejoiced when I saw Ruby squirm.
"I was young, okay?! I didn't know any better!" Ruby insisted and she ran a hand through her shoulder-length blonde hair. Lily squealed, "Tommy Browne? As in head boy? With the glasses and the acne?"
"Yes!" I laughed along, and Ruby started turning quite purple in the face.
"Give it a rest, Violet! We can't all lose our virginity to celebrities!" Ruby spit out. I felt my stomach drop when I realised where this conversation was headed.
Lily knew I only did it once. She knew whoever I lost my virginity to was my baby's father.
"Ruby, don't you dare say anything more!" I shouted, earning myself a look of disgust from the lady behind the cashier's desk.
Ruby grinned evilly, realising she had all the power in this conversation now. "Oh really? Are you not proud to have lost your virginity to James Potter?" She exclaimed.
I stood up quickly and grabbed a dress of the rack without looking at the size, colour or price and dashed with it straight into the only other spare changing room and quickly shut the door before Lily could say anything.
Shit. Now Lily knew everything.
I took a minute to slow my erratic breathing and then looked at the dress in my hand. It was a horrid brown colour, but it was my size, so I struggled to pull it on in a desperate attempt to waste more time.
I looked at myself in the floor-length mirror in the small changing room and cringed. The colour looked even worse when I was wearing it. The style of the dress was alright though, it criss-crossed over my chest and then the skirt fell down to my feet.
I was delaying going back out and facing Lily, so I stayed in the small room for much longer than was needed, staring at my reflection, turning from side to side checking to see if there was any sign of a pregnancy bump yet. It was small, but it was there.
I heard a gentle knock on the door and I felt my heart drop. "Um... occupied!" I called out, but Lily ignored me. "Violet Beale, you let me in there right now!" She called impatiently.
I bit my lip and sighed. I had to face Lily at some point. So I gently unlocked the door. As soon as Lily heard the click, she burst into the room like a tornado. She waited for me to shut the door again, before whispering loudly, "It's James'?!"
I looked down at the floor, ashamed. "Yes." I whispered. Lily covered her mouth with her hand. "No way!" She whispered back.
I nodded, still not looking at her. "I knew something happened between you two!" I cringed and looked up at her, finally meeting her eyes. "Obviously." I sighed, gesturing towards my stomach.
"Wow. I just... well, wow. I can't believe... wow!" She muttered to me.
"Wow. Yeah, I get it, Lils" I sighed. "Look, I understand if you hate me right now, but-" I began quietly, but Lily looked taken aback and interrupted me.
"Why would I hate you? If anything, I love you more! You're carrying my niece slash nephew in there!"
She smiled at me before going silent for a moment, lost in thought, before she looked at me again.
"You have to tell him though, Violet. He's my brother and he deserves to know." I sighed at her words. I knew she was right. "I know. I'm going to tell him tomorrow."
"At the ball?" Lily asked and I nodded. "Promise?" She whispered and I smiled at her.
We exited the room together to see Ruby was missing, obviously trying on a dress in the other changing room, and Rose was standing on the platform inspecting herself in a pretty forest green dress with thick straps.
A thought struck me and I stopped walking.
"What?" She asked and Rose looked up at us, realising we had entered the room. She smiled and did a turn on the platform. "What do you think?" She inquired as the long dress fanned out around her.
Lily and I smiled. "Beautiful." I complimented and then pulled Lily to me. "Did she hear?" I hissed in her ear and she shook her head.
I sagged with relief and patted Lily's shoulder. Ruby then entered the room in a yellow flowy gown and looked at me. She mouthed 'sorry' and I shrugged my shoulders as if to say, 'no big deal.'
Ruby gasped when she saw Rose. "You found the one!" She squealed and Rose smiled back at her.
Ruby walked over to me and gave me a big hug and I smiled. "Just don't tell anyone else, okay?" I joked and she rolled her eyes. "Back at you. Never say the words Tommy Browne ever again."
Ruby looked me up and down and pursed her lips. I sighed. "I look like a shit, don't I?" I asked seriously and all three girls burst out laughing.
Rose stepped down from the platform and straightened out her dress. "Yeah, love," She smiled. "You do." Making Ruby and Lily laughed harder.
The next day I woke up unusually late in the morning. Normally I was a very early riser, so I was shocked when I saw the time on the alarm clock next to my bed in the Weasley house.
I pushed myself out of my comfortable bed and stretched my arms up towards the ceiling, stretching my entire body and moaned in satisfaction. My body ached after the torture (er... I mean shopping) yesterday.
After we all found dresses (Which took until late evening since I refused all the pink frilly gowns Ruby tried to force on me) I was asleep on my feet and just accepted whatever random dress Rose picked out.
We had also gotten our nails done. Rose had gotten a French manicure, as did I, but Ruby got bright red to match her dress, and Lily got a cute pearly-pink colour. I quickly inspected my nails as I stretched my arms out in front of me and yawned widely. Thankfully, they all seemed to be intact.
I slowly rose to my feet and walked quickly onto the corridor and down the staircase. I followed the hall to the kitchen which was situated to the back of the house, and grabbed a box of cereal from one of the shelves and poured it absent-mindedly into a bowl.
I sat down at the table and began to chew on the cornflakes, when I noticed there were other people at the table.
Ginny and Harry were looking at me in amusement and I realised I must look terrible. I could only imagine the haystack-y excuse for hair plastered on my head, desperately in need of a wash, as well as sleep-filled eyes, no makeup, pale face and over-sized Chudley Cannons t-shirt and ratty pyjama shorts.
Blushing, I smiled at them. "Morning." I nodded at them and they smiled.
"Looking well, this morning, Beale!" I heard from behind me and turned around to see James standing in the doorway of the kitchen. His hair was wind-swept, as if her had been flying on his broom. He looked so gorgeous...
I mentally slapped some sense into myself and glowered at him. "Can't say the same for you, Potter." I spat at him and he chuckled. I chewed away at my cereal and James disappeared out the door again. I was making small talk with Harry, Ginny and Hermione (who was standing in the kitchen the whole time, but I never noticed.) When Rose and Ruby entered the room smiling happily.
"Ruby?" I asked, confused. "What are you doing here?" She rolled her eyes at me.
To get ready for the ball, duh!" She exclaimed as if it were obvious. My brow furrowed even more in confusion. "But it doesn't start for another eight hours..." I pointed out.
"Oh my Merlin, you're right!" Ruby exclaimed and I smiled happily at the chance to go back to bed, when Ruby spoke again. "We'd better hurry if we want to be ready on time!"
I spit out a mouthful of cereal and looked up at Ruby and Rose incredulously. "Surely you can't be serious?" I asked Ruby who simply nodded.
"Come on, then!" Ruby said as she pulled me up from my seat. I followed her willingly up the stairs and into Rose's room, which was across the corridor from mine. Rose went and turned on the shower in her en suite bathroom and Ruby sat me down on the bed and started dragging a brush through my knotted hair.
A few minutes later, sighing in defeat, Ruby bundled several towels in my arms and pushed me towards the running shower.
Locking the door behind me, Ruby called to me through the door, "Don't even try and come out until your hair is back to normal!" and I heard Rose laugh along with her.
I hate them both.
Eight hours later and believe it or not, but we were running late.
Rose was standingn by the bedroom door, ready to go, but Ruby and I were frantic, running around the room putting finishing touches on our hair, looking for a shoe, a purse or a perfume bottle.
Rose looked totally elegant. Her forest green dress is so simple yet so beautiful. The straps were thick, running over her shoulder and meet in the middle under her bust. The dress was backless, showing off her pale skin. It fell simply down to her feet, which were encased in silver high heels. Her jewellery and bag were both silver too. Green and silver... I wonder who she's trying to impress?
Her normally frizzy hair has been tamed and is now falling in soft waves down to the middle of her back. She really looked gorgeous.
Ruby stood up from her previous position of her hands and knees on the floor looking underneath the bed for her purse, which she was now holding triumphantly in the air.
She straightened out her strapless, fire-engine red dress. She truly looked stunning. The kind of stunning that broke guy's necks. Her dress sparkled in the light and had a slit running up the right side, showing off a lot of her leg. Her blonde hair was pulled up into a fashionable bun.
She smacked her bright red lips together as she examined herself in the mirror. "We scrub up well, if I do say so myself." She boasted.
I slipped my feet into the navy platform stilettos I had borrowed from Ruby that matched the dress that Rose had picked out for me. When I first got a proper chance to examine the dress, I was actually surprised that I liked it.
It was a deep navy, but in the right light it almost looked purple. It had a sweetheart neckline and really thin straps that were dotted subtly with small rhinestones. The material cinched in under my bust and flowed down gracefully, covering my small bump perfectly. The material was light and floated around me when I walked.
By the time Rose had done my hair and makeup, I knew by the end of the night my I would be hot, uncomfortable and my feet would be killing me.
However, I knew that sore feet would be the least of my worries for tonight.
I felt my stomach clench uncomfortably at the thought of what I had to do. The nerves where kicking in, and I wasn't sure if I would actually be able to tell James, even though I knew I had to.
The three of us made our way down the stairs to Ron and Hugo who were waiting for us patiently by the door. Ron gave Rose a quick hug and murmured something about her growing up so fast.
Ruby and I stepped down the final step into the large foyer and Hugo stared at both of us with wide eyes. After a few moments, Rose hit him over his head with her silver clutch and hissed "Put your tongue back in your mouth!" to which Hugo snapped out of his trance and stammered, "You guys look... nice."
Ruby beamed at him and I thanked him quickly. I could tell he was trying extremely hard to act cool, there was no denying the pink hue spreading over his freckled cheeks. I knew his reaction was mainly for Ruby and her bomb-shell dress.
We all lined up by the door as we waited for Hermione to join us. Ron was clicking his tongue and looking at his watch every few seconds. Ron walked to the bottom of the stairs and called up, "'Mione, love? We're already running late!"
Hermione suddenly appeared at the top of the stairs and called, "Alright, alright, I'm coming." as she descended the staircase. Ron was extremely quiet. "What?" Hermione demanded and Ron broke out into a smile. "You look gorgeous, love."
Ruby and I sighed "Aww" in unison, but Hugo and Rose both pretended to gag as Ron wrapped his arms around Hermione. It was true, though, she did look gorgeous.
I was so used to seeing Hermione in her Ministry robes or in a blouse and pants. Her dress was a beautiful golden colour, and was very simple, but it complimented her brown hair, which tonight was pulled into a sleek updo.
Hermione smiled but batted Ron away and looked at each of us. "You all look wonderful." She complimented. We all thanked her and got ready to apparate.
When we had all arrived safely, we made our way up to the large gates of the Potter mansion. There were several people walking in the same direction. The lights of the party were bright up ahead and the air was filled of talking people and clinking glasses.
We made our way into the house and followed the party noises to a set of large doors. As we stepped into the ballroom, I looked up in awe. The ceiling was a perfect depiction of the night sky, just like the great hall at Hogwarts.
Hermione noticed my staring and smiled. "It reminded Harry of Hogwarts." She whispered.
I nodded, totally understanding. The thought of leaving Hogwarts broke my heart, and I would do anything to be reminded of it once I left.
The ballroom was a perfect circle, with round tables dotted around the edge of the room. The middle of the floor had been cleared for dancing, and a small stage was placed at the top of the room, were currently a group of men in purple tuxedos were setting up instruments.
As we all took our seats at our assigned table. I immediately began scanning the room for James.
After quite a while, I was beginning to lose hope. Lily burst into the room and her eyes darted around before settling on our table, and she skipped over to us.
She was looking very cute in a white dress with a light pink belt. Her red hair was loose and free and swinging with every step she took. She came to a stop behind Hugo's chair and gave him a pointed look. Hugo sighed, knowing her couldn't win a fight with Lily, and stood up reluctantly. Lily grinned triumphantly and threw herself down in his chair. He walked away towards another table, apparently spotting someone he knew.
Lily looked at me pointedly. "Have you seen James yet, Vi?" She prodded. I shook my head and pretended to pick at a piece of invisible lint on my dress. Rose looked between the two of us and shrugged. "Have you seen Al?" She asked Lily.
Lily nodded. "He and Scorpius were making their way down here last time I saw them. Scorpius seemed to be looking forward to it, though." She smirked at us. I held back laughter and Ruby snorted into her wine glass. Rose glared at all of us. "Do you have a problem?" Rose demanded.
We all shook our heads furiously, but didn't look at each other, knowing we would burst out laughing at each other's expressions. My laughter faded instantly when a familiar raven-haired man walked into the room.
My stomach twisted into knots and I looked at Lily. She gave me a sympathetic look, but cocked her head towards James, indicating I should talk to him.
I scrunched my eyes closed and took a deep breath. My stomach was full of nervous butterflies, which weren't helped by how handsome James looked in his black dress robes. Even his shirt was black. He still stood by the door surveying the room, so I swallowed hard and just decided to do it.
I stood up suddenly, and all I eyes turned to me. I smiled nervously at the table, and stammered, "I'll be right back."
Rose looked at me skeptically but nodded. Ruby seemed too absorbed in her wine glass to pay much heed to what I was doing. Lily looked almost as nervous as I did, and gave me a encouraging nod.
I smiled gratefully at her and made my way across the room to James Sirius Potter.
... See you next time! :)
Chapter 10: Hope
[Printer Friendly Version of This Chapter]
A/N: Hey there :) So I was really happy with the reaction the last chapter got... I'm super sorry for that cliffy (Okay, I'm not really that sorry.)
ANYWHO, I'm in the middle of my Christmas exams at the moment (Maths on Friday, eeep) but I'm trying to keep up with my schedule as much as I can. Thanks to everyone who has reviewed and added to your favourites, I genuinely squeal when I see them, so keep them up :)
"My day will come
I know someday
I'll be the only one"
Hope - the Descendents
James looked up as I approached him and I saw him visibly swallow. As I came to stand in front of him, I realised even in my high heels he was still quite a bit taller than me.
I looked up into his hazel eyes and I smiled at him. I felt my heart rate increase considerably when he returned my smile. "You look beautiful." He said, and I felt my face warm with a blush. "So do you." I replied automatically, but my blush deepened when I realised what I had said. "Erm, I mean... you look good, too, I guess." I tried awkwardly to rectify the situation.
James smirked at me. "So you think I'm beautiful, huh?" He teased, and I felt as though my face was on fire. "Er.. No. I mean, yes. No. I guess." I stammered. James chuckled and I realised if I was going to tell him, I would have to do it now. Quickly. Like ripping off a plaster, just like I told Madam Pomfrey. So I cut him off.
"Look, James," I began, and James smile fell, confused by my suddenly serious tone. "There's something I need to talk to you about."
James brow furrowed and he looked me in the eyes. "Shoot." he said.
I shook my head. "Not here." He looked worried and was about to say something when he was interrupted again, this time, by his mother.
"James! I told you to wait by the door and greet guests on their way in!" She exclaimed. "Where have you been all evening? I am very disappointed in you, young man!" Ginny lectured. I noticed her long evening dress was teal coloured, and she wore her red hair back in a french twist, revealing the earrings I had gotten her for Christmas. I noted with pleasure that they matched her dress perfectly.
James gaze flickered to me. "Now isn't the best time, Mum." James looked very uncomfortable.
"What do you mean, now isn't the best time? Last time I checked, James Sirius Potter, I was your mother, not the other way around!" Ginny looked furious.
James bit his lip. (Oh Merlin he looks so hot when he does that) "Mum, I'm in the middle of a conversation." He indicated towards me, and Ginny turned to me, appearing to just realise I was there. "Violet! You look amazing!" She exclaimed, and I smiled. "You too. Love the earrings."
I grinned at her and she pretended to be flattered. "Oh, these things? They were a gift!" She clasped her hand to her chest dramatically. "Well whoever gave them to you must have wonderful taste!" I giggled.
Ginny giggled back at me and James was looking at us with an incredulous expression. I looked at him and pursed my lips. "We can talk later." I muttered to him. His eyes flashed to Ginny. "Are you sure?" He whispered back to me, and I nodded. "It can wait."
James looked at me reluctantly and nodded. He turned to Ginny and held out his arm. "Shall we, mother?" He joked, and Ginny laughed. "We shall, son." Together they exited the grand hall arm in arm.
I walked back to the table, disappointed, but also a little relieved he didn't know yet. Lily looked up at me worriedly. I shook my head slightly, so only she would see.
Lily released a loud sigh, loud enough for Ruby to question her if she was okay. Lily smiled and shrugged her off, saying she just had a headache.
I sat down in the chair I had previously vacated, and nobody said anything to me about my short conversation with James. Rose didn't relax her hawk-like stance, until Albus and Scorpius entered the room ten minutes later. She turned bright red and let out a squeak.
We were the only two left at our table, as Lily left to say hello to another third year she saw enter the room, Hermione and Ginny were standing off to the side of the dance floor talking to two other women in evening dresses and Ruby had abandoned us to dance with a group of guys in seventh year, after running her tongue across her teeth, adjusting her dress and winking at us suggestively.
Al looked up at me from where he stood with Scorpius by the door and raised his hand to give me a small wave. I smiled at him, then looked intensely at Scorpius, then did the same to Rose, (who was trying to hide behind a napkin) before turning to Al again and giving him a look that I hoped he would understand meant let's get these two fools together.
He seemed to understand me. He turned to Scorpius and said something, giving him a nudge towards our table. Scorpius shook his head violently and went to run out of the ballroom but Al caught him by the arm and started to drag him over.
I smirked and turned to Rose who hadn't noticed them approaching yet. (Too busy trying to figure out a way to hide under her chair without drawing attention to herself, probably) I nudged her knee with mine and cocked my chin to Scorpius when she looked up.
She turned so red her face and hair appeared to mix together and she went to stand up. I hooked my arm into her the crook of her elbow and pulled her back to her chair.
I leant to her ear and hissed, "Stop messing about! You like him, he is clearly infatuated with you, so for the love of Merlin, SIT. DOWN." Rose looked embarrassed momentarily, then nodded her head, resigned. I sighed. "I only say this because you're my best friend." I whispered, more friendly than before. Rose looked at me and gave me a light smile. All was silent for a moment before she burst, "Do you really think he's infatuated with me?" She asked excitedly.
I opened was about to reply but shut my mouth promptly when I saw Albus drag Scorpius to the chair beside Rose. He pushed Scorpius down and muttered something in his ear. Scorpius flushed slightly and nodded.
Albus looked triumphant and sat down in the chair next to me. "You look fabulous." Al said to me and I thanked him and returned the compliment. He and I fell into a comfortable conversation about Quidditch, even though I didn't play.
It wasn't because I didn't like the sport, but because of my total lack of coordination. Al was keeper for the Slytherin team, and he informed me that he would pummel Gryffindor for the House Cup, just like last year. I was laughing at this when I saw Rose and Scorpius were talking quietly, slowly leaning closer to one another as they talked.
Al noticed this too and gave me a self-satisfied smirk. "Let's get out of their hair." He whispered and held out his arm to me. I took it gladly and we slipped away from the table quietly and walked to the dance floor.
The dance floor was full of dancing couples, but the floor was so big, there was plenty of room to move around. The band was playing a beautiful song that I recognised, but I couldn't quite put my finger on where I had heard it before. Albus placed his right hand on my waist and took my right hand with his left, and we started to move around in a circle.
Although the song was slow and Albus' hand was on my waist, I knew there was nothing romantic about the gesture, and it wasn't awkward either. Somehow I still felt comfortable. Al looked over to Rose and Scorpius, who were now so close together you couldn't fit a book between them. He gave me a small high-five and I laughed.
I saw Ron from across the room shooting them dirty looks, but I saw Hermione murmuring softly to him, trying to calm him down. I giggled at them and turned back to Albus, who winked at me, seeing them too. "It seems as though our genius plan is working!" He exclaimed. I laughed as he let out a dramatic, evil laugh. "Muahahaha!" He cackled.
I was about to do the same when James re-entered the room. I closed my eyes and steeled my nerves. Now or never I thought to myself, as I tried to ignore the knot in my stomach.
I turned to Al to excuse myself, but before I could get the words out, I saw Chastity Everlynch enter the room, wearing a black strapless dress that shimmered in the light.
Chastity was a seventh year Slytherin at Hogwarts. She was tall, with blonde hair and blue eyes, flawless skin and a tiny waist. She was totally beautiful.
But this was not why I couldn't get any words out. I couldn't speak, because as she entered the room after James, she hooked her arm into his elbow and walked with him to the table next to mine, and sat down in the chair next to him.
I stood there, my mouth gaping open like a goldfish. Albus noticed I had stopped moving and looked at me with concerned eyes. "Vi? Are you okay?" He questioned. I mentally smacked some sense into myself.
I forced a smile at Albus and continued dancing like nothing was wrong. I had my mask in place and I wasn't going to let it slip. I saw Rose and Scorpius get up and start dancing out of the corner of my eye and I gave Albus a pleased grin, which he returned.
I let my eyes roam the room, taking in all the guests. Hugo was talking to an old woman in a wheelchair with a sour expression on his face. Hermione was now dancing with Ron, who still kept a protective eye on his daughter who was laughing at something Scorpius had said. I saw Ruby leave the room with an arm wrapped around a good looking tall man. She caught my eye and winked at me. I stifled a snort. Albus followed my line of vision and he, too, snorted at a tipsy Ruby stumbling out of the room on the arm of a stranger.
The song ended and another melody filled the air almost immediately. Albus and I continued dancing as if the change hadn't happened. "Who was that?" Albus asked curiously. I snapped my eyes up from watching Fred Weasley who was dancing with a pretty brunette. Fred had quite the womanizing reputation, so I couldn't help but feel bad for the poor girl.
"Huh?" I asked, fighting off the urge to look at James and Chastity. Albus looked towards the door which Ruby had just disappeared out of. "The guy with Ruby." Al clarified, and I shrugged. "No idea. As long as he has a pulse, Ruby will shag him." Albus smirked and twirled me around.
"Who's James with?" I asked innocently, like I didn't know. Albus looked over to his brother.
"Um... Chastity something, I think? She's in my house." I nodded and continued looking intently anywhere but at James. "I didn't know they were going out." I said nonchalantly, and Albus shook his head.
"They're not. Chastity arrived with her parents while James was greeting guests on their way in. She practically threw herself at him." Albus chuckled. "Why do you care so much anyway?" He winked at me.
I blushed. "I don't! I was just curious! I couldn't care less really." I stammered. Albus smiled at me and winked again. "Your secret's safe with me." He whispered and I shook my head, but didn't say anything.
As the song came to a close, I risked a look at James. Chastity was still sitting beside him, talking away. He was fiddling with his collar, something he does when he's bored, I noted with pleasure. She was boring him. I supressed a giggle as I clapped with all the other guests a the song ended.
Just as Albus took my hand again, James looked at me. He gave me a crooked smile as Chastity chattered away at him. I saw Jame's gaze trail down my arm to where my hand was attached to his brothers. His smile faded and a crease between his eyebrows appeared.
I didn't get a chance to think too much of it before Albus led me back to our table, which Lily had now returned to. Sitting on her right was another third year, Lorcan Scamander. Lily blushed lightly as we joined her, and I couldn't help but feel we had interrupted something.
Lily gave me a stern look. I knew what she was getting at. It was almost eleven o'clock and I had yet to tell James anything. I glanced over at him again and saw Chastity leaning toward him, giving him an eyeful of cleavage. Slut.
I looked back at Lily pleadingly and she crossed her arms and pursed her lips. It was strange how we always ended up having these silent conversations. Albus was talking to Lorcan. 'Talking' was a bit of a loose term, though. 'Grilling' would be more appropriate. I even think I heard him say, "What are your intentions towards my sister?" just like one of those Mafia movies.
Lorcan looked increasingly uncomfortable, so Lily stepped in telling Albus to cut it out.
The next hour went by very slowly. It was full of stolen glances at James and Chastity, who alternated between dancing and talking to each other. I ignored the stabs of petty jealousy that hit me in the stomach every time I saw James laugh, or say something to her.
After a while, Lily stopped trying to convince me to talk to him, and instead gave my sympathetic looks and encouraging pats on my knee.
After a while, Rose and Scorpius sat down with us after dancing for about seven songs in a row. Harry came over to us at about half eleven and asked us if we were enjoying our evening, and we all responded enthusiastically, although it was very forced on my part.
Yes, Harry Potter, I am having a lovely time at this ball in an uncomfortable dress and sore high heels with an aching back and sweaty face, because of the fact I just turned four months pregnant with a baby. All of this is not helped by the fact that said baby's father is your son, who has no idea this baby exists, and is happily chatting away with the biggest slut in Hogwarts. (okay, so maybe I had no evidence to back that up, but I just had a feeling.)
As the clock inched closer to midnight, I knew my time was running out. I kept working up the courage to go and talk to James, but the idea of interrupting his little chat with Chastity made me chicken out at the last second. I have no idea why the bloody sorting hat though I belonged in Gryffindor.
Ruby rejoined us at ten minutes to midnight, her hair and makeup perfectly retouched. She winked at Rose and I, and Rose rolled her eyes at me when Ruby looked away. I giggled and crossed my eyes at her.
James and Chastity continued flirting, and I kept watching, waiting for her to get the idea that he wasn't interested and back off, so I could jump in and talk to him. Unfortunately, it never happened.
As the seconds ticked down to midnight, I resigned myself to the fact I would have to talk to James after the New Year rang out. As the entire ballroom counted down, I smiled as I looked at all my friends surrounding me.
Scorpius took Rose's hand.
Ruby tucked a stray hair behind her ear.
Lily blushed as Lorcan leaned towards her.
Albus shifted in his seat and looked across the room at Niall Nott, a seventh year Ravenclaw.
I looked over at James and Chastity.
HAPPY NEW YEAR!
The room exploded with cheers and fireworks went off in the night sky above us.
Scorpius leaned in and kissed Rose gently on the mouth.
Lorcan pecked Lily on the cheek.
Ruby took a swig from a silver flask she had hidden in her clutch.
Albus leaned in and kissed my cheek.
And Chastity crashed her lips against James'.
He stayed still for a moment, eyes open, eyebrows raised in surprise, before shrugging and closing his eyes, wrapping an arm around her waist, and pulling her closer.
I felt as though my blood had gone cold. I could feel my hands visibly shaking, so I casually tucked them under my legs. I pressed my mouth into a straight line as I watched him attempt to eat her face off.
Everyone at our table were watching them in silence, and I avoided the looks I knew Ruby, Rose, Lily and Albus were shooting me. I bit back my tears, totally forbidding myself from crying. I blinked furiously and straightened up my back and tucked a strand of hair behind my ear.
I forced my eyes away from the father of my child and the whore with her tongue down his throat, and looked at Rose. Scorpius had his arm wrapped around her and I could tell she was ecstatic, finally kissing him after months of pining for him.
I could tell I was ruining her moment. She was so obviously worried about me, which was preventing her from being happy. So I took a deep breath and replaced my mask of cool indifference and gave her a smile and suggestive wink.
She breathed a sigh of relief and looked at Scorpius, who leaned forward and pressed his lips to hers in such a strangely intimate fashion that I had to look away.
After a while everyone began talking again. I looked at everyone except Lily, the only one who knew the truth. James and Chastity left the room arm and arm shortly after midnight and I again blinked away stupid tears.
When the clock turned to half past twelve, Ron and Hermione found Rose and I and told us we were leaving. Rose gripped my arm supportively as we left the Potter house, kissing Harry and Ginny goodbye as we left.
"Do you want to talk about it?" Rose whispered in my ear as we staggered across the grass to the apparition point.
Ruby's father (a very important Ministry official) was at the party too, so Ruby decided to go home with him. It was just Rose and I walked along with Ron and Hermione leading the way, with Hugo bringing up the rear.
"Talk about what?" I asked innocently, batting my eyelashes at her. She rolled her eyes. "Don't be cute. You saw James trying to lick out Everlynch's tonsils just as much as I did." I forced a laugh and shook my head. "Like I care..." I said offhandedly.
Rose looked at me sternly. "You have have had crush on that boy for, what, almost a whole year now?" I bit my lip. "Not that I understand why, personally." She added and I giggled. "James has had girlfriends before. Nothing is different now." I lied.
Of course everything was different now. Never before was there a possibility that one his girlfriends could end up being a stepmother to my child.
Oh my Merlin, I hadn't actually thought about that before. Chastity Everlynch, my child's stepmother? I bet the baby will like her better than me. Would the baby call her Mum? I bet the baby will ignore me completely and only want to be in her other mother's slim, tanned arms.
I can just see it now. Oh dear lord, my own child hates me! I feel anger swell inside of me. That bitch is stealing my baby from me! Not only is she a slut, she's a home wrecker! A big, fat home wrecker! Just wait 'til I get my hands on-
My train of thought is interrupted by the uncomfortable squeezing sensation of apparition. Ron or Hermione must have taken a hold of me while I wasn't paying attention.
Rose and I stumble up to her room and she immediately took off her jewellery and chucked her purse on the floor.
"What about you, eh?" I asked, sitting on her bed and prying my swollen feet from my shoes. Rose twisted around and undid the zipper at the side of her dress, and stepped out of it, only wearing a nude-coloured slip and stockings.
I saw her blush before she turned away from me and walked towards her wardrobe to hang up her gown.
"I don't know what you're talking about." She muttered and I grinned "Sure you don't." I teased as I pulled my dress over my head. "Oh Scropius, ooh how I love the way your muscles ripple in the moonlight! You have the loveliest grey eyes that look into my soooul. Oh I am so glad you are mine, you big hunk-" Rose turned and chucked a pillow at me.
I smirked as I rifled through her chest of drawers and pulled out a large t-shirt and pulled it on over my underwear. Rose put on a pair of flannel pyjamas as I walked to her en suite. Looking in the mirror, I sighed and pulled the many hair pins from my complicated hairstyle. My hair fell in waves down the length of my back and sighed with relief now that the pressure had been released from my head.
Rose walked in beside me and started brushing her teeth. When she had finished, I took her toothbrush from her hand and brushed my own teeth. She rolled her eyes, but didn't stop me.
She climbed into her double bed first, and I followed in after her. She looked over at me and smiled. "So I suppose you're sleeping here tonight then?" She said. I nodded and lay down. I heard her snort as she turned on her side and closed her eyes.
In what felt like seconds, I heard her snores fill the room. Merlin, they were loud.
And it was as I lay there, looking up at the ceiling, that I finally let the tears I had been fighting all night come.
Sorry, it had to be done. It can't be that easy. I know quite a few people will be upset that she didn't tell him, but we're working up to it, I promise.
I need some opinions, though. Do you think this storyline is moving too slowly? Let me know :) Thanks for reading.
Chapter 11: Heroes or Ghosts
[Printer Friendly Version of This Chapter]
A/N: Thanks to everyone who reviewed and given your opinions, I really appreciate them all. Most of you are okay with the pace of the story, but one or two agreed that things were taking too long.
So this chapter was actually meant to be in two, but I decided to drop some irrelevant points and join the two chapters together, so now things are picking up. I hope you all had a great Christmas, or whatever it is you celebrate, and I hope you have a safe and happy new year. :)
"Or am I just too cynical for my own good?
too scared to say,
we'll get there if we should"
Heroes or Ghosts - The Coronas.
When I woke up the next morning, Rose was still snoring loudly in my ear with her arm wrapped around me and her face buried in my hair. I realised after a second that the reason I had awoken so suddenly was because the bed was shaking.
I looked up to see Fred, who was jumping in between us on the bed, and James leaning against the door frame watching, clearly amused.
"What the fu-" I was interrupted mid-sentence by a loud crash as Rose fell out the other side of the bed. Her hair was wild, frizzy and sticking up in every direction as she looked around from her place on the floor.
Her bewildered expression was enough to make me burst out laughing, along with Fred who had to stop jumping and lay on his back on the bed, wheezing for air.
I stood up and made my side of the bed as Rose, too, stood and tried to regain some dignity by combing through her hair with her fingers and holding her nose high in the air.
Fred whistled. "Sorry ladies, wouldn't have disturbed you if I had known you were busy." He said, grinning mischievously.
"What do you mean?" Rose asked, stretching her arms to the ceiling and yawning. James smirked, deciding to join in on the conversation.
"You two, in bed together, in very little clothing." He winked at me and I realised I was only in my underwear and a big t-shirt, and Fred was now staring pretty intensely at my revealed legs.
Rose smacked him over the head. "Stop perving at Violet. She's mine." Rose joked and I grinned. "That's right." I smacked my lips. I felt a familiar lurch in my stomach and walked calmly to the en suite muttering a small "Excuse me."
James was glaring at Fred for some reason, but I found I had other things on my mind as I shut the door behind me and leant over the toilet bowl, emptying my stomach quietly. I flushed the toilet and walked slowly to the sink and washed my hands and brushed my teeth. Morning sickness had become such a normal part of my morning routine, it was now as regular as having breakfast.
When I returned, Rose was alone in her room, seemingly more awake than she was a few minutes ago, "Good morning!" she sang. I raised one eyebrow at her good mood.
"Scorp and Al are coming over today, and Fred and James are here! And, er-" She grimaced, "James invited Chastity."
That is the only word to describe New Years day.
Scorpius, Rose, Fred, Albus, James, Chastity, Me.
Rose greeted Scorpius with a kiss, and blushed a fiery red when everyone whistled and cat-called. Scorpius simply pulled her tighter to him, smiling proudly.
Fred and Albus started playing an insane game of muggle Monopoly, which was so complicated even Rose couldn't keep up with the rules they had invented. (Not that she cared. She just sat on the couch curled up in Scorpius' arms.)
I sat on an armchair in the corner of the room and watched Fred and Albus get increasingly competitive as the played their game, stopping every so often to argue over the rules.
James sat on the couch next to Rose and Scorpius, but there was quite a space between himself and the couple. A space which I could have probably filled, had I not felt extremely awkward sitting beside the unknown father of my unborn child.
The Weasley doorbell rang after about a half an hour and James jumped up and left the room, calling, "I'll get it." I clenched my jaw and secured the mask, steeling myself to act politely. After all, I didn't know the girl at all. She could be perfectly nice.
James entered the room holding hands with Chastity. She pulled him to the couch and curled up into him when he sat down and everyone was silent as she hadn't said anything. James cleared his throat.
"So Chas, this is everyone. Everyone, Chas." We all chorused 'Hello Chastity." (I may have replaced 'Chastity' with 'whore' but I said it under my breath so nobody heard me.)
Chastity nodded at us before tilting her chin up to James and crushing her mouth to his. Taken by surprise, James fumbled a little, hitting his head off the side of the couch. Chastity didn't stop, though. She started to pull him into a lying position on the couch, leaning closer and closer towards Rose and Scorpius.
Together, Rose and Scorpius both stood and moved to the floor beside where I was sitting, both wearing matching looks of disgust on their faces.
Everyone was looking at them with the same expression. Even Albus stopped yelling at Fred about getting out of jail for free to mirror our horror. They were going at it like the world was ending, and James showed no signs of pulling away.
Afraid my tender stomach was going to be sick, I stood and walked towards the kitchen. As I searched through the cupboards, I found myself craving lemon flavoured biscuits. Of course, they had none. Just my luck.
I could hear conversation picking back up in the living room as I sat on the countertop, wondering where I could find some lemon flavoured biscuits. An idea popped into my head and I stood up, and returned to shuffling through the cupboards, extracting flour, butter, milk and eggs.
I took out a huge bowl, and took my hair which had hung down my back, wavy, thanks to the braided up-do, and pulled it into a twisted bun.
I was mixing the butter and the sugar together when I felt someone watching me. Judging by the warm tingle that spread from my fingers to my toes, I think I knew who it was.
"I didn't know you were into baking." A masculine voice teased. I rolled my eyes, but didn't turn around to face him. "Detached yourself from your girlfriend's face, I see?" I mocked, adding the eggs to my mixture.
James pretended to gasp. "Do I detect a hint of jealousy, Beale?" I wasn't even looking at him but I could practically see the smirk on his face.
My cheeks flamed. "Hardly, Potter." I shot back, continuing to stir my batter. All was silent for a moment, before I felt him standing directly behind me. He was as close as he could possibly get without touching me, and I felt shivers run down my back. I could feel his breath blowing on my neck. I stiffened and stopped stirring.
"Are you sure about that, Violet?" He whispered in my ear. I shuddered with pleasure internally, but on the outside clenched my jaw.
I knew being alone with him wouldn't last long. This was pretty much my last chance to tell him I was pregnant. I grit my teeth and sighed.
"Look, James, the thing is-" I was interrupted when James threw a handful of flour in my hair. I twirled around swiftly and looked at him for the first time.
"What. The. Hell." I growled, grabbing a handful of flour from the bowl I had laid out, and chucked it in his face. He gasped and started coughing, his entire face white.
He wiped his eyes clean and narrowed them playfully. "You are so dead." He threatened and I squealed, running around the kitchen island to get away from him.
He chased after me, and I held him off by throwing more flour at him. He growled and grabbed some sugar and poured it down my shirt.
Giggling, I ran back to the middle of the kitchen and grabbed an egg from the fridge. James slowed, raising his hands in surrender. "You wouldn't." He glared at me, and I tapped my chin, pretending to be deep in thought. "Wouldn't I?" I teased, casually passing the egg between my hands.
He took a step back and I grinned, chucking the egg at him, hitting him right in the face. He let out a strangled moan and wiped his eyes. He stayed utterly still for a moment, before raising an eyebrow. "Right." He said calmly, before charging at me.
Caught by surprise, I didn't start running in time. Grabbing me from behind, James wrapped his arms around me and dragged me towards the kitchen island where all the ingredients were laid out. I struggled against his vice-like grip and let out a few screams, making futile attempts to get away.
James stopped and suddenly released me. I looked at him in confusion and opened my mouth to ask him what was wrong when I saw where he was looking.
Standing in the doorway was Chastity Everlynch, glaring at us so hard I thought her gaze might burn through my skull. I took a tentative step away from James, brushing some excess flour from my red shirt. I could only imagine how ridiculous we looked, covered in flour and sugar, with egg dripping from James' chin.
"Um..." I penetrated the silence. Chastity turned to me and gave me the deadliest look I had ever received and I immediately shut up.
She looked to James and placed a forced smile on her face. "Babe, you should go in to your friends. They sent me to get you to sort out some argument about their little game." She waved her hand as if it was all beneath her. "I'll help Violet clean up." She added, the disgust showing on her face as she said my name like it were a bad word.
James nodded quickly and brushed past her and out of the room. She grabbed his arm before he left and kissed him full on the mouth, keeping her eyes open and looking at me the whole time. I shifted from one foot to the other uncomfortably.
Chastity released him and walked into the kitchen towards me. James headed into the sitting room and Chastity turned to me and I began talking. "Do you know any clean up spells? Sorry, I would do it myself but I'm underage so I-"
Chastity held up her hand to stop me from talking. "Listen, bitch." she growled so venomously I took a step back. "Excuse me?" I asked, surprised. Chastity extracted her wand and pointed it at my throat.
"James is mine." She declared. "If I see you flirt, speak or even look at my man ever again, you will not live to tell the tale, do you understand me?" She threatened, pushing her wand into my neck to the point of pain.
I nodded numbly, too terrified to answer her back. "Good." she sneered. She turned and strutted out of the kitchen, waving her wand as she walked, the mess of the kitchen instantly righting itself.
"Oh." She stopped and faced me again. "If you tell anyone about this, you will wake up in the morning with all your hair cut off. Am I clear?" She asked me coldly.
Again, I nodded, too shocked to speak. And with that, she gave me one last death glare before storming out of the kitchen, leaving me stuck to the spot.
Over the next few days leading up to our return to Hogwarts, I made sure to keep as far away from James as I could. The look in Chastity's eyes when she held her wand to my throat, so full of hatred, I had absolutely no doubt she would follow through with her threat if I spoke to James.
Rose and I spent most of our time with Scorpius, since the two of them couldn't seem to get enough of one another since they began dating. They had yet to tell their parents that they were together, and Rose told me she wanted to keep that way for as long as she could.
Even though the war had changed so much about blood purity and family status, even house rivalry, it hadn't changed the way Ron Weasley felt about Draco Malfoy. He tolerated his son at the Burrow because he was Albus's friend, but if he knew Rose or Hugo were to became close to him, he would probably have a fit.
I hadn't seen Lily since New Years Eve. I hadn't sought her out because I knew she would pressure me to tell James, although I didn't blame her. If I had a brother and some girl told me he got her pregnant, I would want her to tell him as soon as possible. But I couldn't. Especially after Chastity's threat.
If she thought running around the kitchen with James was bad, how would she feel about me carrying his child?
I don't think she'd be too happy.
Rose obviously knew something was up. I could even tell I was much quieter since that morning in the kitchen. After Chastity left the kitchen, I continued baking alone, ate a few of my biscuits (Damn they were good) and then faked a headache (not a total lie) and went back up to my bedroom at the Weasley's.
Now on the Hogwarts express, Rose and Scorpius are sat close together with their fingers intertwined while Albus and I sit on the opposite side, playing a game of Exploding snap on the space of the seat between us. I was staring determinedly at the pile of cards between Albus and myself and Rose and Scorpius leant closer together, whispering quietly.
I glared at them. Why was everyone all loved up? Why is everyone getting exactly what they want? Rose and Scorpius, Hugo and his girlfriend, Lily and Lorcan, even Alex and that tall dark stranger... and James and Chastity.
I was just thinking these thoughts when the door to the compartment opened and in stepped James. My heart sped up and I got butterflies in my stomach, before I saw Chastity step in behind him.
James gave me a smile, but I kept my face impassive and pulled my gaze away from deep brown eyes and stared intensely at Albus and our game. I heard Chastity clear her throat, and I looked up at her. She was not clearing her throat at me, thank Merlin, but at James, who was still standing in the doorway of the compartment, unmoving, a look of confusion on his face.
James' expression snapped so quickly that I didn't have enough time to read him, but I could swear for a second he almost looked hurt. I shook my head and continued slapping cards down onto the pile in front of me as James finally moved from the doorway to sit down beside me on the seat.
Chastity fierce glare and I stopped throwing my cards down to look at James. He gave me one of his signature crooked smiles that made my insides melt, but I refused to return it as I usually would. My eyes flickered to Chastity who had sat down next to Rose and Scorpius. She gave me a threatening look and I looked down at my knees.
"You should probably sit with Chastity." I muttered, looking between the two of them nervously. I saw Rose out of the corner of my eye, giving me a weird look, but I didn't return it.
James looked stunned for a second and let out a forced laugh. "You don't want me to sit beside you?" He asked, and I bit my lip. He had no idea how much I wanted to sit beside him. I looked to Chastity, who was fingering her wand, and giving me a smug look. She shook her head subtly, not once breaking eye contact.
"Er... no. I don't." I stammered. James looked at me for a moment, his expression unreadable. Suddenly, he looked furious. He glared at me with so much hatred, I shuffled further away from him on the seat.
"Fine then." He said as he stood up swiftly and took Chastity's hand and stormed out of the compartment, but not before Chastity had the time to give me an arrogant wink.
As soon as the compartment door shut with a bang, I found myself biting back tears. I could not, would not allow myself to cry in front of my friends. I swallow harshly and blinked furiously as Rose let out a deep breath.
"What. The. Fuck?" She spat, her anger staining each word. I glanced up at her and saw her entire face slowly turning as red and her eyes flashed with anger.
I clenched my fist, digging my nails into the palm of my hand, until I was pretty sure I broke skin. "I- I'm sorry, Rose... I didn't mean-" I stuttered, but stopped when I realised I was about to cry. Rose's angry eyes flashed to me and I noticed Scorpius shift uncomfortably in his seat, as he shot me a concerned glance.
"What?" She exclaimed. "You think I'm pissed at you?" Her voice rose several decibels and cringed away, fighting the urge to cover my ears.
"Well... yeah." I said quietly, looking at my knees. I felt Al place a comforting hand on my shoulder. I saw Rose stand up suddenly out of the corner of my eye.
"I saw the looks she gave you, Violet! What the fuck was that about?" She demanded, sitting down beside me and wrapping an arm around my shoulder.
I felt my stomach settle in relief and rested my head on her shoulder. "You're not mad at me?" I asked. She shook her head, but she still still felt stiff with anger.
She pulled away from me and looked me in the eyes. "What's going on, Violet?" She asked solemnly. I shook my head and felt a one of the tears that had built up escape out of the corner of my eye as I thought of Chastity's threat.
"Vi?" Rose asked quietly. I shook my head and closed my eyes, another small tear escaping. I swatted it away, ashamed of myself.
"I can't tell you." I mumbled and Rose looked furious.
"What happened? Did James do something? Did Chastity do something?" Rose looked angrier than I had ever seen her.
I cleared my throat. "Chastity may have mentioned I wasn't allowed speak to James..." I muttered hesitantly. As soon as I did, I regretted it.
"She what?!" Rose screeched. I heard Albus, too, let out a squawk of protest. Scorpius kept quiet, but his grey eyes hardened.
"That bitch!" Rose yelled. "Who the fuck does she think she is? I'll fucking murder her! Where does she get off telling you to ignore one of your best friends?!" Rose cried.
Rose must really be furious if she was swearing this much.
I shook my head. "I'd hardly say we were best friends, Rose..." I tried to calm her down, but she wasn't listening.
"Violet, you have been crushing on that boy for the past year!" Rose stood, waving her arms around like a mad woman. I heard Scorpius' sharp intake of breath at this revelation, but Albus stayed quiet, this piece of news nothing new to him.
"Merlin, Rose! Announce it to the whole carriage, why don't you?" I frowned at her but her gaze didn't falter.
"That bitch should not be banning you from talking to James. I'm going to go have a word with her." Rose said through gritted teeth. She turned on her heel and made her way to the door of the compartment.
"No!" I yelled, running at her and pulling her back down roughly to sit beside me. She flopped back in her seat and looked at me in surprise.
"Why not?" She demanded. Albus and Scorpius watched in silence. Albus's green eyes were glazed over in fury and Scorpius had a look of determination in his eyes that I didn't like.
"You can't tell her I told you!" I insisted with a shudder. "They'll break up soon and it can go back to normal. If she knew I told you..." I trailed off. Albus sat back down beside me and pulled me into a comforting hug.
Rose bit her lip and let out a big breath. "Okay," She muttered, but I could still see the anger in her eyes. "But if she threatens you again, you tell me." Rose demanded.
Rose grabbed my chin and pulled my face towards hers so she could look me in the eye. "Promise me." She said sternly. I looked into her light brown eyes and nodded again.
"I promise." I said seriously. Her eyes were searching mine. I felt the tears starting to fill up again. but I didn't let them fall.
I hated this. Rose was my best friend. My very best friend in the entire world. My studious, level-headed, loyal, neurotic, beautiful best friend, and I was keeping possibly the biggest secret I will ever have from her.
I blinked back my tears quickly and took a shaky breath. "Albus? Scorpius?" I asked as I turned away from Rose to face them. "I need to speak to Rose alone. Would you mind giving us some privacy?" I asked formally.
They both shot me concerned glances but nodded and stood.
"Oh, and boys?" I said, and they stopped to turn and face me. "The deal I made with Rose goes for you two, too. No confronting Chastity, no telling James. Am I clear?" I demanded in an authoritative tone. Both boys nodded their head slowly.
"And Scor?" I mumbled, looking to the floor. "Yes?" He said gently. I felt a blush spread on my cheeks. "Keep the information you learnt today a secret, please." I muttered.
"Got it." He chuckled and I blushed even harder.
I looked up to see Rose lean up and give him a kiss before he left the compartment. Rose and Scorpius looked dreamily into each others eyes and Al rolled his eyes at me and I giggled.
Scorpius and Al turned again to leave but I stopped them again when I sighed and said, "Find Lily and tell her to come here as soon as she can."
"Lily? Why Lily?" Rose asked confusedly once we were left along together. I shook my head. "You'll understand soon enough. Please, just wait, for now." I said with a smile, reaching out and holding her warm hand. She nodded, biting her lip.
It didn't take Lily long to burst into our compartment. "Violet! For the love of Merlin, why are- Oh." Lily stopped her short rant abruptly. "Hey Rose." Lily twisted her fingers together awkwardly and shifted from one foot to the other.
Rose furrowed her brow. "What's going on?" Lily looked at me, unsure, and I swallowed.
"Rose... I need to tell you something." I began, trying to seem calm. "Lily, come here please." I said, gesturing to the free space on the seat to my left. Lily obediently sat down and took my left hand, understanding what I was doing. My right hand remained in Rose's.
I took a deep shaky breath and squeezed Rose's hand tightly. "I love you, Rose. You're my best friend. Ever since first year when I first met you, I knew we would be close, and we have been. And you know, I would be there for you no matter what. And I'd like to think you would be the same for me." I said, my voice rising in pitch toward the end. I glanced at Lily who gave me a sympathetic smile and rubbed her free hand up and down my arm.
Rose had a look of pure confusion on her face. As I was about to begin again, her expression cleared, almost as if a cloud was lifted. A sudden expression of realisation spread over her features and she gasped.
"Oh Merlin!" She cried. I winced, awaiting her lecture. "You two are a couple, aren't you?!" She exclaimed. The entire compartment was silent for about two heartbeats before Lily and I started laughing.
I laughed so hard I got a stitch in my side and had tears running down my face. I glanced at Lily and saw she was in a similar position, bent double and gasping for air.
After about two full minutes of hysterical laughter, I sat up straight and wiped my eyes with my sleeve, still giggling. Lily took my hand again, and I smiled at her.
I turned back to Rose. "Rose... You have no idea how wrong you are." I grinned weakly and reclaimed her hand. I cleared my throat and took a deep breath.
Just do it. C'mon, I thought you were a Gryffindor!
"Ro, I'm pregnant."
The entire carriage fell into silence. I looked at Rose carefully. Her mouth was hanging open and her eyes were wide with surprise. I glanced at Lily quickly, and she returned my concerned gaze.
"Rose... Are you okay?" I asked carefully, waving a hand in front of her stunned face.
She snapped her mouth closed and readjusted her position on the seat. "I don't- I... How did you- who did you- pregnant..?" She mumbled incoherently, her voice sounded hoarse.
"Rose I know this is a shock..." I started, but Rose interrupted me. "A shock? You said you were a virgin!" Rose exclaimed. I still had a hold of her hand, and I squeezed it.
"Last time we talked about it, I was." I sighed. Rose continued staring at me, mouth agape. "Who?" She inquired simply. I shook my head at her.
"I want to tell him first. I would prefer he hear it from me." Rose looked crestfallen.
"What's with all the secrets, Violet? I thought we were best friends! Best friends tell each other things!" Rose said angrily, snatching her hand away from mine.
"Rose..." I looked desperately to Lily, but she remained silent, a sorrowful expression on her face.
"Don't 'Rose' me! I cannot believe you! You go off and have sex with some random guy, and end up pregnant, and yet you don't even tell your best friend?" Rose was now standing, her eyes were full of fury. I felt tears begin to run down my cheeks again as I reached out to her.
"Rose... Please don't-"
"Why is Lily here?" Rose demanded, pointing at her cousin. I looked between the two of them and wiped my tear-stained cheeks. I began to explain. "Lily was the first person to find out. She-"
"Lily?" Rose interrupted, yet again. "You tell Lily, over your best friend of almost six years? This is unbelievable!" Rose cried, waving her arms in disbelief.
"It's not like that, Rose!" I insisted, standing up so we were eye to eye. Rose's own eyes filled with tears and she glared at me. She held up her hand to stop me from speaking.
"Don't. Just don't. I can't believe- I just..." Rose looked totally lost. She turned around and pushed open the compartment door. She looked back at me one last time before exiting the compartment, slamming the door behind her.
It was then that I broke down in sobs. Why was my life such a mess? I'm a pregnant teenager, my child's father hates me, my child's potential step mother is a raging bitch and I just lost my best friend in the entire world.
As Lily enveloped me in a hug and I wailed my eyes out into her warm shoulder, I could not believe how much of a mess I had made of my life.
A/N: ...Well, at least Rose knows now, right? I'm sorry things are so grim at the moment, but after all, this story is in the angst category. This is part is kind of the rock bottom point, but things will get better eventually, I promise.
Thank you for reading, please review!
Chapter 12: Little Talks
[Printer Friendly Version of This Chapter]
A/N: Sorry this one took quite a while to get out there, but I have my mock exams coming up next week *screeches* and I've been doing my best not to get distracted and procrastinate. It's not really working. On the bright side, this chapter is the longest one yet!
There's an old voice in my head
that's holding me back
Well tell her that I miss our little talks.
Little Talks - Of Monsters and Men
The past few days had passed by in a blur of lessons, sleeping and throwing up, and before I knew it, it was Thursday.
The last couple of days had been so difficult because whenever I walked into a room Rose was in, she would ignore me for a while before walking out, without saying a word. This happened a lot, considering we were roommates and had pretty much all of the same classes together.
James was worse. He and Chastity stayed pretty much joined at the hip. (Although, it was more usually the mouth.)
Whenever Chastity would see me in the same room as the two of them, she would glance at me before practically jumping on James and sticking her tongue down his throat. What made it worse was that I knew she just did it to piss me off. Shamefully, it worked.
This seemed to please Chastity. There wasn't a second that went by where I didn't want to smack that smug look off her face. I wonder how pretty she would look with only two teeth?
To top it all off, I looked like shit. My sleeping habits had gotten worse, if that were possible. I was paler than ever, I had terrible bags underneath my eyes as though I had been punched in the face, and even my hair seemed to have lost the luster it had gotten during the first trimester of my pregnancy. Now it was dull, lifeless, and hung in knots down my back.
Sitting in the library trying to study Herbology, I couldn't seem to stop my mind from wandering off. My scan was this Saturday, only two days away. That was two days until I had to tell James.
Although... had I really considered all my options? Who said I had to tell James? I could very easily leave for Mexico in the morning and raise my child as a single mother. I could name him or her Carlos or Juanita and teach them Spanish as a first language. Nobody would ever have to know.
That plan would be flawless if there wasn't the small problem of Lily. And Rose, for that matter. I could obliviate them, I suppose. But first I should probably learn the obliviation charm...
Albus slapped down in the chair next to me and a cloud of dust swarmed around us from the large stack of books he had slammed against the table.
He smiled brightly at me, and without saying anything, opened up a book and began to read. I sighed, and returned to my Herbology.
Plants, plants, plants, yadda yadda yadda.
After a while, I stifled a yawn and looked at my watch. Nearly six, so dinner would be being served soon. I closed my book with a thud, not having learnt anything.
The chair scraped loudly against the wooden floor as I stood and looked to Albus. "Dinner'll be starting soon. You coming?" I forced a false smile on my face, although I knew he could see through it.
"Yeah. I just-" Albus stopped talking as the seventh year Slytherin, Niall Nott, entered the deserted library. "Actually, I need to finish this. I'll follow after you, 'kay?" I gave him a small nod and gathered up my book and pieces of parchment and I strolled out of the library.
After dropping my books back to my room, I made my way down to the Great Hall quite quickly. As soon as I entered, I walked automatically to the Gryffindor table to sit down with Ruby and Alex.
Since our fight, Rose left her usual spot beside me at meal times to join Scorpius at the Slytherin table. In return, Albus left the Slytherin table to come sit with us on the Gryffindor side.
"Violet!" I looked up at the sound of my name coming from Alex, who was sitting directly in front of me. "What do you think?" She said, leaning toward me in wait of an answer. I looked between the two of them briefly.
"Um... what was the question again?" I asked, feeling my cheeks warm with embarrassment.
Alex sighed and Ruby rolled her eyes. "Kevin. What do you think? Of him, I mean."
I searched my brain for any sign of recognition at he sound of his name. "The name doesn't ring a bell," I told Alex.
She raised her eyebrows in silent question. "Kevin? The guy I've talked non-stop about?"
"Sorry..." trailed off. Alex closed her eyes for a moment and I got the feeling she was trying to calm herself.
"Look, Violet." She started. "I know you're having a bit of a tough time at the moment, with Rose and James and all, and when you're ready to talk to us you can. But could you maybe try to listen to me every once in a while?" Alex rubbed her temples in frustration.
I looked down at my empty plate. I hadn't felt much like eating lately. Usually when I did, I threw it up within a few minutes. "I'm sorry. I've just... I've been dealing with some stuff." I pulled at the end of my messy ponytail and kept my eyes on the plate in front of me.
I heard Alex sigh and I looked up at her wide, hazel doe eyes. "I know. And we've tried to be understanding, but you won't let us. Something is obviously going on and I've tried giving you space, but it's hard. Whatever it is, I know you'll tell us when you're ready, but it's clearly taken a toll on you. You haven't been looking in best spirits lately so I-"
"Basically, you look like shit, Violet." Ruby blurted out. I scowled at her and rubbed a hand over my face. "Thanks." I spat.
I pushed my plate away, rested my forehead on the wooden table and let out a groan. "I'm sorry, okay? I just need to work through a few things. I promise I'll listen to you." I said, keeping my face pressed against the table.
I heard Ruby chuckle and without raising my head, I made a very rude hand gesture.
I only lifted my head when I felt the pressure of someone sitting down on the bench next to me. I looked up to see Al, who was reaching across the table immediately to grab a chicken leg off a platter in the middle of the table.
Alex, Ruby and Al fell into comfortable conversation, while I sat back and let their chatter fade into mindless buzzing as I let my thoughts wander.
Two days. My scan was in two days time. I wasn't stupid. I knew I couldn't put off telling people for much longer. It was getting harder and harder to hide my growing waistline. I looked like I had enjoyed far too many pies over the last few weeks.
I also knew James had a right to know, but until he detached himself from Chastity's face, I was a bit reluctant to discuss the fact his life would be over in about five months. This reluctance was only made worse by Rose's reaction to my news. My best friend wasn't speaking to me, how would my one night stand deal with it?
My mind was once again interrupted by a tap on my shoulder. Damn it, could I not have two minutes to ponder the end of my life as I know it?
I turned my head around and was shocked to see Rose standing behind me, looking extremely awkward. "Can I have a word?" She asked a she fiddled with the rose pendant around her neck that I had gotten her for her fourteenth birthday.
I swallowed and nodded, and followed her from the table to the large oak doors leading from the Great Hall to the Entrance Hall. We walked together down the corridor of classrooms in silence before entering the one farthest away from the hall.
The room was freezing cold and covered in dust, so I wrapped my arms around myself in a vain attempt to preserve some body heat. I stood by the door while Rose walked further into the classroom and sat down on the teacher's desk.
Rose sighed and looked up at me for the first time. "I'm a raging bitch, aren't I?"
I almost burst into laughter, but I managed to restrain it slightly, so it came out as a snort. "A bit." I gave her a half-hearted smile, and she looked at me for a moment, before suddenly she burst into tears.
I stood still in surprise for a second before rushing across the abandoned classroom to wrap my best friend in a hug. Rose was shaking as tears streamed for her eyes. She buried her face in my shoulder and let out a wail. "I'm so, so so-orry!" Her voice was wavy with hysteria and I tried to calm her down, giving her shoulder reassuring pats.
"Don't worry about it." I murmured as I stroked her hair. This only seemed to upset her more as she pushed me away and looked up at me through wet, blood-shot eyes.
"Don't worry about it?" She wiped her cheek in an attempt to dry it off, but as soon as it was clear, new tears took it's place. "Don't worry about it?!"
Rose pulled away from me and began pacing back and forth. "Violet, do not be nice to me! I yelled at you for being a bad friend, and I turned around and abandoned you when you needed me most! I'm the bad friend here. You have no idea how ashamed I am of myself. I can't imagine going through what you're going through. Being threatened, losing your best friend-" Rose let out a sob and I looked at the ground uncomfortably trying to blink away me tears. Rose took a shuddering breath.
"And a baby, on top of everything else. I'm a terrible person... I should have seen this sooner. You've been so emotional lately and I didn't even think twice as to why." Rose's eyes were still streaming tears as she finished her speech.
"Oh Rose..." I soothed softly, reaching a hand forward to rest on her shoulder and stop her incessant pacing. "You are not a bad friend. You were just in shock, that's all."
Rose looked at me through tear-filled eyes, "I've really missed talking to you. I'll make it up to you, I swear. You don't have to tell me who the father is, if you don't want to. From now on, I'm totally here for you. Consider me your child's second parent."
I brushed away the tears escaping from my eyes and pulled Rose into yet another hug. "I'd like that very much, Rose." I murmured into her shoulder.
Rose tightened her hold on me as we both tried to stop crying.
(I swear I never used to cry. Pregnancy is turning me into a total wuss.)
Rose pulled away and wiped her eyes with her sleeve and took a deep breath through her nose. "We really need to stop doing that." Rose chuckled as she threw an arm over my shoulder and we exited the classroom together.
I rolled my eyes and wrapped my arm around her waist, glad to have my very best friend back again.
I woke up the next morning with a feeling if impending doom in the pit of my stomach.
It was Friday. My scan was tomorrow.
I couldn't keep this from James anymore. Whether he is dating Chastity or not, I will tell him today. Even if we aren't speaking at the moment. He needs to know.
Rose and I were the only two left in our room, after the other girls had left for breakfast. She sat perched on her bed, her eyes followed me, clearly amused, as I flew around the room with a toothbrush sticking out of my mouth, one arm in my shirt, one leg in a pair of tights, and hopping around trying to zip up the side of my now far too tight school skirt.
"Don't help or anything!" I snapped at Rose, who grinned before crossing the room and grabbing hold of the side of my skirt. I took a deep breath and stayed very still as Rose grabbed the zipper with her right hand, and steadied herself by resting her left hand on my hip.
She struggled with the zip for a few moments before she gave up and let go. We both released the breath we had been holding and I began to feel tears pricking the back of my eyes.
"Why won't it zip up?" I cried, angrily stepping out of the traitorous skirt and giving it a kick for good measure.
"Because you're having a baby," Rose bent down and picked up the skirt and folded it quickly. "You know, your baby is already the size of an apple."
I stopped re-buttoning my shirt and turned to Rose. "What?" I said. Rose looked up from Alex's trunk where she was searching for something.
"Your baby is about the size of a small apple now." She repeated.
I rested a hand on my slightly bulging stomach. "Really?" The feeling of annoyance at not being able to fit into my skirt was replaced with a feeling of pride.
My baby was growing all by themselves! How smart was that?
"How do you know that?" I questioned Rose as she pulled out a scrap of black material from Alex's trunk with a triumphant "Aha!"
Rose tossed the fabric at me and I caught it with both hands. "I did some reading. After our fight on the train I snuck into the restricted section and found a few pregnancy books." Rose sat back down on her bed as she spoke and I realised the piece of clothing she had thrown at me was Alex's spare school skirt.
I slipped it on over my now-adjusted tights and buttoned it up at the waist. It was very snug, but miraculously, it fit. Luckily Alex was a bit more on the chubby side. I hoped she wouldn't mind me borrowing her skirt.
"Why did you do that?" I asked Rose as I shrugged on a grey cardigan over my shirt, trying to ignore the straining of the buttons across my stomach.
Rose stood and handed me my tie and robes and she started walking towards the door. "I was worried about you. I was annoyed you hadn't told me first, but you were still my best friend." Rose said as we walked together down the girl's staircase.
I gave her a grateful smile as we walked out of the common room and down the stone hallway. We made it down to the great hall quite quickly and walked through the open oak doors.
As we got closer to our table, I stopped in my tracks when I realised there were more people in our area then there would normally be.
Rose continued to walk on, not realising I had frozen. She turned to the side as if to say something, but stopped when she noticed she was walking alone.
She whipped her head around a few times, obviously trying to see where I had vanished to. When she turned around and saw me standing there, she walked back to where I was frozen.
"Vi? What's wrong?" Rose asked, before I saw panic set in to her features. "Oh Merlin, is there something wrong with the baby?"
I snapped out of my trance and shushed her. "Keep your bloody voice down!" I snapped, looking around to see if anyone had heard. Thankfully, nobody seemed to have noticed us yet.
"Well, what's the matter then?" She inquired.
I shook my head. "Nothing. Come on." Together we walked up to the table and I swallowed hard as we were greeted by everyone. Except for two people. Two people who shouldn't be there.
James and Chastity.
Steeling my resolve, I nodded. This is it. After breakfast, I will be telling James.
As we sat down, I saw understanding lit up in Rose's eyes. She shot Chastity a glare and sat down next to me on the bench where I had joined Albus.
The chatter continued on, except for Rose and James who stayed as I silent as I was.
Chastity was very involved in the conversation, interrupting people and blurting out random snide comments in her nasally voice. Every time the conversation went in a different direction, she would try to steer it back around until she was the centre of attention again.
When she spoke, she took large bites from an apple, making me wince and press a protective hand to my stomach.
As I sat there, a wonderful smell began to invade my nostrils. I looked searchingly up and down the table, looking for the source. Seeing nothing of interest, I sniffed the air. Deciding to follow the scent, I stood and walked towards the direction of the smell, leading me straight to the Ravenclaw table.
There, in the middle of the table, sat a stack of glorious golden pancakes, piled high on top of one another, beautiful steam rising from the top, and running syrup dripping down the side. Swallowing the excess saliva in my mouth, I turned to look at the group of Ravenclaws sitting in front of the pancakes.
"Do you mind?" I asked, pointing towards the platter. They all looked up at me in confusion, but nodded. Grinning, I picked up the entire platter and went back to the Gryffindor table.
As I got closer, I heard Fred speaking.
"...She was gorgeous, I tell you. Got hardly any sleep at all the entire summer." Fred boasted, puffing out his chest in pride.
It was immediately obvious to me that Fred was talking about the mysterious blonde he had spent his summer with while he was over in Romania visiting his Uncle Charlie. The blonde who he bragged about constantly ever since he returned.
I sat down at the table, and instead of putting a few of the pancakes onto a plate for myself, I dove straight into the huge platter with a knife and fork, ignoring the looks I was getting from everyone around me.
"She had amazing legs." Fred sighed resting his hand under his chin. "Alas, it was not meant to be." Fred lay a hand over his forehead dramatically, earning him a giggle from Rose and Ruby.
Deciding the pancakes were missing something, I picked up a can of whipped cream and squirted it all over the top of the pile.
James rolled his eyes "Please give it a rest, Freddie. I'm sick of listening to you go on about 'Ikea' or whatever her name is."
Fred glared at him. "You're just jealous! I bet you get hardly any action."
Stabbing at the pancakes with a fork, I tried not to laugh. James Potter should not be getting any action. At all. Just look at the consequences!
Chastity laid a hand on James' chest and gave him a sickly sweet smile. "He gets just plenty, thank you very much." She said snootily.
It just so happened that I had just take a huge forkful of pancake when Chastity spoke. Out of surprise, I took in a large breath of air, and managed to get a bit of pancake accidentally stuck in my throat.
Bright red in the face, I coughed and hacked away as Rose patted me on the back to try and help me remove the lodged piece of food from my oesophagus.
When I finally composed myself and looked up, I saw several amused faces looking back at me. Except one.
"Gross!" Chastity sneered, wiping down her face as if I had spat on her, even though she sat furthest away from me.
I cleared my throat and pressed my lips into a line. Chastity sniffed. "Maybe you shouldn't be eating so much, Violet. It's no wonder you're choking on the amount of food you try to shove down your throat."
Ruby, Rose and Albus all jumped to my defense. "Excuse you?" Ruby demanded, pointing a finger at Chastity.
Chastity scoffed and flicked her hair over her shoulder. "Well, it's not like it's breaking news or anything. It's clear to everyone that Violet's been looking very heavy lately."
Everyone was stunned at her random insult. Even James looked shocked. "Chastity!" He said, in a what the hell kind of voice.
Chastity shrugged. "All I'm saying is that she needs to cut down on her carb intake."
I shot Chastity a glare as I slowly stood from my seat. "I do not need to cut down on my carb intake, thank you very much."
It was when I straightened from this position that it happened.
The second last button on the cardigan I was wearing came away with an audible 'pop' and skittered across the oak dining table, coming to a stop directly in front of Chastity's plate, as though for inspection.
I turned bright red as Chastity clicked her tongue and picked up the shiny button between her thumb and index finger. She brought the button closer to her face and inspected it before looking up at me. "Clearly."
I let out a huff and spun on my heel and began to walk away from the table. Rose followed after me, reaching out to touch my arm, but I shook my head. "I'm just going back to the common room, Rose. Just... let me be alone for a while, okay?"
Rose nodded in understanding and went back to the table, as I marched out of the hall with the little dignity I had left.
After a few minutes of walking around the corridors, I started mentally smacking myself. I was meant to tell James about the baby after breakfast! What the hell was I doing, running away just because of a few mean comments from Chastity?
I took a deep breath and decided to turn around and head back to the Great Hall. As I turned, I found myself banging straight into a five-foot tall red head.
"Lily?" I asked in surprise.
Lily gave me a serious look before waving her hand in a 'follow me' gesture and stalking off down the corridor. Breathing a sigh of relief at not having to go and talk to James immediately, I gave a small shrug before following after Lily to the direction of the common room.
When we reached the Fat Lady, Lily called out the password and climbed through the portrait hole. Following behind her obediently, we both entered the empty common room in silence.
Lily stood in the middle of the room with her hands on her hips as she gave me a reprimanding stare. Even though I was two years older than Lily, she still somehow managed to seem much older and wiser than I was.
She released a deep breath and pinched her nose. "Violet." She said seriously. "Enough is enough. You need to cut the crap and just tell the truth."
My eyes widened and I looked around me quickly to make sure that we were truly alone. Seeing what I was doing, Lily shook her head. "Everyone is at breakfast. I followed you from the Great Hall."
I nodded slowly before swallowing and closing my eyes. "I know. I bloody well know. Do you think this is easy, Lily? Having the burden of potentially ruining someone's life on your shoulders? Never mind the fact that this is James Potter we're talking about. His dad is Harry Potter, for Merlin's sake! Do you realise how big this will be? Everyone will know! Everyone will be talking about it! This isn't something I can just blurt out!" I defended.
"I am well aware of who James' father is, since he is my brother." Lily clenched her jaw. "I'm not an idiot, Violet. I knew this wouldn't be an easy thing to say. Which was fine a few weeks ago! But your scan is tomorrow. It's not like you're getting any smaller." Lily eyed the small bulge of stomach peeking out from behind the popped button of my cardigan.
"Thanks." I murmured sarcastically as I pulled the cardigan tighter around myself. Lily rolled her eyes. "You know what I mean."
Rubbing a hand over my face, I thought over everything.
Why was I being such an idiot? The longer I left this, the worse the repercussions would be. When was I finally going to work up the courage to tell James? When I was in labour? On the baby's tenth birthday? On their graduation?
One thing was for sure, I needed to tell James. As soon a possible. Before he heard it from Professor McGonagall tomorrow.
"Alright." I sighed. "Okay. I can do this." Releasing a deep breath, I looked to Lily for confirmation. She nodded briskly, a proud smile on her face.
"You can do this." She agreed.
Here we go.
Closing my eyes briefly, my determination set in. I turned to walk towards the portrait hole, but just as I reached it, it swung open and hit against the wall with a bang.
Wincing at the sharp sound, I looked up to see who the intruder was. As soon as I saw them, my blood ran cold. Chastity.
Chastity alone was scary enough, but nothing frightened me more than the expression on her face. The pure, unadulterated hatred and fury. I'm sure if she were a cartoon, smoke would be pouring from her ears.
"You little BITCH!" She cried a she stormed into the common room. How she got the Gryffindor password, I don't know. I didn't really have time to think it over as the furious girl started to approach me like a lion stalking it's prey.
Slowly backing up, I raised my hands in an 'I'm unarmed' gesture. Even though my wand was tucked into my pocket, I wasn't about to aggravate her further my pointing it at her.
"Chastity?" Lily asked innocently, looking between the two of us in confusion and alarm. Of course. Lily had barely spent more than two minutes with the girl, she had no idea of what she was capable of, or the threat she had given me.
Looking slowly to Lily, I gave her a fake reassuring smile, which I'm sure looked totally forced. "Lils, I think you should step outside for a while."
Lily shook her head and was about to say something when Chastity cut her off as she whipped out her wand and pointed it at her. "Nobody goes anywhere, do you hear me?" she demanded.
Shocked at her loud voice, I nodded shakily and I saw Lily do the same.
"I'm sure you know why I'm here." She spat, taking a threatening step toward me. Automatically, I took a step back and fought off my natural instinct to pull my wand out.
It isn't just you anymore, Violet. Think of the baby. Your baby. Do not make Chastity feel threatened. You do not, under any circumstances, want her to attack.
I nervously swallowed. "I have no idea why you're here, Chastity."
She scoffed. "Bullshit. Of course you know why I'm here." She hissed angrily, taking yet another step toward me. When I reversed another step, I ended up backed up against a set of bookshelves.
The fear in my stomach swelled and swirled around as I realised she had me cornered. "I honestly don't." I said.
Chastity let out a scream of frustration. "You know exactly why, you little slut! James dumped me. Because of you."
My eyebrows rose in surprise. "Because of me?" I squeaked.
"Yes, you ignorant little pig. Because I was 'rude' to you!" She exclaimed angrily, still holding the wand at me. "I warned you to stay away from him! I asked you very nicely. How do you repay me? By convincing my boyfriend to break up with me!" Chastity's voice was steadily getting louder, and I was gradually growing more fearful.
"Don't worry. We'll be okay. It will be alright. She won't hurt us," I thought comfortingly towards the baby.
"I didn't convince him to break up with you! I haven't even spoken to him!" I cried, desperately trying to get her to believe me.
"Stop LYING!" She shouted furiously.
Before I could reply, the portrait hole was thrown open again to reveal Rose and James, both red and panting from exertion. James's eyes flickered from Lily, to Chastity, then finally, to me.
When our eyes met, I tried frantically to get him to see all the sorrow and guilt I felt.
"Violet." He whispered, fear lacing through his features.
Chastity let out a cackle. "Look who's come to join the party!" She exclaimed. James eyes never left mine, his eyes seeming to be holding an expression of utter pain.
I could feel Rose watching me anxiously, but I couldn't seem to tear my eyes away from James. My mind raced with all the regrets and secrets I had kept as panic began to take over.
"It's about time you got what you deserved, Violet Beale." Chastity said threateningly.
James eyes flickered towards her, and he tried to reach forward. "Chas..."
"No! Don't you dare defend her James!" Chastity yelled, interrupting him.
Her blazing eyes turned to me. "You. This is all your fault! I warned you! I fucking warned you to stay away from my James!" Her fury seemed to be radiating from her as she lifted her arm, which was shaking with rage, to point her wand directly at my heart.
I took a deep breath as her expression suddenly changed to be shockingly calm. "Now you have to pay." She said serenely.
A bright flash of light emitted from the end of her wand and hit me square in the chest and I felt the pain of a million blades slice through my entire body as I was thrown backwards.
In the distance I heard a blood-curdling scream. It could have belonged to me, but I wasn't entirely sure.
Time seemed to move in slow motion as I felt myself slam into the bookshelves behind me and I heard the pounding of books falling to the floor, and felt agony rip throughout my entire body.
Various shouts and screams filled my ears as I landed to the floor with a loud crack.
Then everything went black.
A/N: ...Uh oh.
Thoughts? Predictions? Criticism? I wanna hear it! Please review :)
'Till next time,
Chapter 13: Secret's Out
[Printer Friendly Version of This Chapter]
A/N: I'm so sorry this update took so long, but my mocks are now totally over and done with! *throws confetti* So now I won't have anymore serious exams until the BIG ONE in June. (So basically, you won't have to listen to any more of my lame excuses.)
I also wanted to say HUGE thank you to everyone who added this story to their favourites, since the last chapter gave us that push into the hundreds. (Wowza)
Also, there is a switch up in the point of view in this chapter. Fair warning.
Thanks for reading, please review, and I'm sorry for this colossal author's note! :)
Chastity's blazing eyes turned to me. "You. This is all your fault! I warned you! I fucking warned you to stay away from my James!" Her fury seemed to be radiating from her as she lifted her arm, which was shaking with rage, to point her wand directly at my heart.
I took a deep breath as her expression suddenly changed to be shockingly calm. "Now you have to pay." She said serenely.
A bright flash of light emitted from the end of her wand and hit me square in the chest and I felt the pain of a million blades slice through my entire body as I was thrown backwards.
In the distance I heard a blood-curdling scream. It could have belonged to me, but I wasn't entirely sure.
Time seemed to move in slow motion as I felt myself slam into the bookshelves behind me and I heard the pounding of books falling to the floor, and felt agony rip throughout my entire body.
Various shouts and screams filled my ears as I landed to the floor with a loud crack.
Then everything went black.
I have to say, nothing pleased me more than watching James yell at Chastity for being rude to Violet. It was bloody hysterical, actually, since it's almost painfully obvious how much James likes Vi. And she has been crushing on him for so long it's ridiculous.
I had always hoped those two would end up together. In fact, Ruby, Alex and I have had a running bet for the past year on how long it will take them to realise that they are meant for each other.
I was so sure I was going to win. That was, until Violet told me she was pregnant with some guy's baby.
I don't think I had ever been so surprised in my entire life. Violet was so quiet and sweet, she was the very last person you expect to end up as a pregnant teenager. The shock of the enormity of the secret is really what made me so furious.
It took me a while to cool down, and once I had, the guilt of turning Violet away when she needed a friend the most almost consumed me. I was so ashamed of myself, I couldn't even work up the courage to speak to her for a couple of days, so sure she would reject me as I had done her. But of course, she didn't. She welcomed me back with open arms, despite all the awful things I had done.
James ushered Chastity out of the Great Hall so that they could speak more privately, without all the years of Hogwarts listening in. I saw all the gossiping girls of James' fan club slump in disappointment when they realised they wouldn't be able to hear the newest gossip about the most popular guy in school.
I sat back in my seat and reached for a slice of pumpkin pie and everyone in our little area of the Gryffindor table stayed quiet, all wearing matching smiles of smug satisfaction. None of us cared for Chastity and we were glad she was getting what she deserved.
The group eventually picked up the conversation again, but I let my thoughts wander. As I sat there, I let my eyes roam around the Great Hall, carefully inspecting the faces of the male population. Who was the father of Violet's child? Was it him? Was it him? Was it him?
Out of the corner of my eye, I saw Lily stand up from further down the table and walk towards the double doors leading to the Entrance Hall. She walked with a keen determination, eyes fixed on the exit.
A few minutes after Lily left the Great Hall, the hum of Chastity and James' fighting outside the hall stopped. I stood up and suggested I go and check on James.
I walked back up the length of the hall and left through the double doors. As I looked around, I saw no sign of either James or Chastity. I ventured out further down the stone corridors and soon enough, I found James sitting on the floor against a wall running his hands through his dark hair.
I sat down beside him and winced when the cold concrete met my back. "Are you okay?" I asked gently. James held his head in his hands and I became increasingly more worried when I saw his shoulders start to shake.
"James? What's wrong? Don't cry." I laid a comforting hand on his back as the shudders racked through his body.
James turned his head to the side to look at me and I braced myself for the tears. However, what I saw shocked me even more. "James!" I cried, giving him a playful slap. "You're laughing?"
His whole body convulsed with silent laughter as he rested his forehead on his bent knees to try to regain control of himself. "It's just..." He wheezed, "Oh Merlin, she was horrible!"
I stared at him in wonder for a moment as tears of laughter rolled down his face. Warily, I asked, "Then... why did you go out with her?"
My question seemed to strike something with him, as his laughs gradually slowed until he was left with a serious expression on his face. Staring intently at his shoes, he stayed quiet, seemingly considering my question.
"I don't know." He said eventually as he wiped at his eyes. "I really don't know."
Not sure how to reply, I settled for a hum of understanding as I patted him on the back. "Where is Chastity now?" I asked.
James shrugged. "How should I know? She stormed off somewhere mumbling to herself."
I stayed very still. "What direction?" I asked carefully.
James looked at me in confusion. "What do you mean?" He asked.
I stood up quickly. "I mean what direction did that psychotic girl you just dumped go storming off in?" I demanded as I felt my heart rate start to pick up.
I knew Chastity felt threatened by Violet. I knew she had warned Violet not to speak to James. I knew her threat had frightened Vi so badly, she had cried. Violet never cries. (At least, not until recently) And now James had broken up with her. What would Chastity do next?
"Oh, shit!" I dashed off, my footsteps echoing around me. I heard James swear and start running to catch up with me, calling out to me to wait for him.
I paid no attention to him, continuing on towards the Gryffindor common room, where Violet had told me she'd be. I saw James start to gain on me out of the corner of my eye.
"What. Are. You. Doing?" He exclaimed, taking quick pants between each word as he continued to sprint alongside me. I felt my lungs start to burn as I rushed up the staircase, but I didn't stop. Violet might be in trouble. She might need me.
I chose to ignore him and save my oxygen to tackle the last few steps of the staircase. Bloody hell, had these stairs always been so long?
As we grew nearer to Gryffindor tower, James continued to follow me, still demanding to know where I was going. I still ignored him, feeling sweat begin to build up on my forehead as I ran the last few steps to the Fat Lady's portrait.
As I began to say the password, James grabbed ahold of my elbow, interrupting me. "Hang on a second! What's going on?" He demanded, looking very red in the face after the exertion of running.
I shook my head as I gasped for air. "Vi. Threat. Chastity. You. Breakup. Danger." I panted.
James furrowed his brow in confusion and looked at me. "Who's in danger?" He asked, scratching the side of his head.
I let out a groan of frustration. "Violet!"
I saw James spine straighten and his eyes set with determination. "Why is she in danger?" He growled as he took a step forward. I backed away when I saw the fire in his eyes.
I didn't know for sure whether I was just overreacting or not. Maybe we would walk in there to find Violet cleaning up or reading a book. Maybe Chastity had just stormed off to go for a walk and clear her head. However I couldn't shake the gut feeling that told me my friend was in trouble.
Still recovering from the strain of running, I simply pointed at the Fat Lady. James barked out the password and yanked open the portrait without waiting for the Fat Lady open herself. I briefly heard her complaining about children these days having no respect.
James led the way and rushed into the portrait hole and I followed quickly after, but the sight awaiting us made us both freeze.
There, right in the middle of the Gryffindor common room, stood Chastity Everlynch, with her wand pointed at my best friend.
"Violet." James whispered, his features twisted in distress.
I could see Lily standing over on the other side of the room as Chastity cackled, "Look who's come to join the party!"
I looked at her in utter disbelief. Bloody hell, this bitch really is psychotic.
My stomach twisted and turned as I watched Violet who had her hands raised in submission, stand silently, looking straight at James with tortured eyes.
"It's about time you got what you deserved, Violet Beale." Chastity threatened.
James looked away from Vi for the first time. "Chas..." He took a slight step forward as he tried to reason with the insane blonde.
"No! Don't you dare defend her, James!" Chastity shouted as she looked back at Violet. I fought every instinct I had not to dash out and defend her. I couldn't risk angering Chastity.
"You. This is all your fault! I warned you! I fucking warned you to stay away from my James!" She shouted at my best friend. James looked at me in surprise as he realised what Chastity had said.
Before he could speak, Chastity straightened her arm to point her wand directly at Violet's heart.
I gasped and James took another hasty yet cautious step forward just as Chastity stated, "Now you have to pay."
A bright flash of light engulfed the room. I felt my heart drop to my stomach as all of my senses were knocked off-kilter for a moment after the blinding spark. I heard a heart-wrenching scream of pure agony come from Violet as I saw the spark of light hit her directly in the chest.
James shouted out "NO!" as Violet flew like a rag doll back into the wall of bookcases, hitting against them with a loud whack. Books began to fall to the ground and I heard Lily scream in horror as Violet landed onto the hard floor, a loud crack resounding around the room.
All was still for a moment as we all froze in shock. In the silence that hung around the room all I could think was: my best friend, my best friend, my best friend.
James raised his wand at Chastity with a shaky hand. "Get away from her." He spat.
Chastity tilted her head to the side cockily. James cleared his throat and pointed his wand with more strength. "I said, get the fuck away from her!" He shouted.
Smirking, Chastity backed away, sarcastically holding her hands in the air. James kept his wand pointed at her as he began moving to towards Violet's lifeless body. I held out an arm to stop him getting too close.
"There might be some residual magic." I croaked out. "You have to be careful." It wasn't until that moment that I realised I had been crying.
Silent tears streamed down my cheeks as I checked Violet from a distance for any obvious signs of injury. She lay on her side, with one hand on the floor above her head and one arm draped over herself. Her leg was bent at an awkward angle and she had large scratches covering her hands and face, a particularly large cut above her right eyebrow.
As I examined her, Violet let out quiet moan and reached to cradle her stomach. I felt my body freeze. The baby.
For a while I had forgotten it wasn't just her.
Lily seemed to come to this realisation at the same time as I did, as she slowly raised her terrified eyes to look into mine.
"The baby," she gasped, her eyes swimming with tears and distress.
We continued to look at each other in horror when Chastity scoffed. "Oh please. She's hardly a baby anymore."
Without looking at her, I knew she was rolling her eyes in that arrogant way she does. She thought we were talking about Violet. I spun around to face Chastity, who was still being held at wand point by a distraught James.
I let out a growl. "She's pregnant!" I screamed, allowing myself to release the pent-up frustration inside of me.
Chastity's grin fell at my words.
Out of the corner of my eye, I saw James' face turn as pale as a ghost. "She's pregnant?" He whispered.
Turning to him, I nodded in resignation. "Yes."
I saw his demeanor immediately change to one of absolute fury. Turning to look at Chastity, he raised his wand. Without a hint of hesitation, he shouted "Expelliarmus!"
He yelled the spell with so much conviction that the power blasted from his wand was enough to send Chastity flying backwards, to where she landed on the floor, unconscious.
3 DAYS LATER
For a long time, I was under.
Under darkness. Under a weight pressing on my chest, securing me in the black fog that threatened to consume me. So much darkness. No light. No life. No up. No down.
There was nothing. Darkness and nothing.
I felt nothing. I heard nothing. I saw nothing.
But slowly, the nothing became something.
And that something was pain.
And soon that something also turned into light. Like a veil gradually being lifted, I became more and more aware of the sounds around me. I heard the creaking of a chair, the tap of gentle footsteps, the soft murmur of quiet conversation.
"How much longer?" This voice was the first one I had heard clearly since I started to feel something. Although my eyes remained closed, I would have known that voice anywhere. Rose.
Another voice answered her. "It shouldn't be much longer now."
"Do you think she's in pain?"
Her question was met with silence.
The something I had began to feel started to hurt even more. I hoped this meant I could open my eyes soon. It was horribly frustrating to hear and not see.
"Did you see that?" Another voice asked. "Her eyes just moved!"
"Violet?" I feel a cold pressure on my hand. "Vi, can you hear us?" Rose's voice was soft and sweet.
I wanted to scream. Yes I can hear you! but my mouth refused to cooperate. The pain kept increasing.
"Violio?" The sound of Ruby's old nickname for me made me want to smile. But my mouth refused to cooperate. The pain kept increasing.
I heard Albus chime in next. "Look! I saw it too!" I wanted to reply but my mouth refused to cooperate. The pain kept increasing.
The agony I now felt must have peaked. There was absolutely no way anyone could hurt this much and survive.
"Everybody stop." The strong masculine voice interrupted. "Give her a second."
That voice only made my chest ache even more. The guilt. The immeasurable guilt I felt. The secrets, the lies, the hiding. I should have told him. I should have told him as soon as I found out.
Slowly, my eyes began to open. The brightness of the room momentarily stunned me and I raised a hand to cover my face. Ouch.
"Vi?" Rose gently brought my hand down from my face. I saw her amber eyes were filled with tears.
I started to answer her, but only ended up croaking. I cleared my throat. "Hi."
Rose let out a sob and wrapped me up in a warm hug. Which would have been nice if it weren't for the stabbing pain in my ribs. "Ow." I winced.
Rose pulled back from me immediately, and I reached down to touch my stomach. When my hand found the taut swell of my small bump, I almost collapsed in relief. All other pain I felt became irrelavent. My baby was okay.
I looked around my bed at the relieved faces of all my friends, crouched by my bed side. James was the only one who stood, facing me from his position at the bottom of the bed.
I looked at his face. Did he know now?
In his eyes, I could see nothing. No concern, no sympathy, no hatred, no love. Just blankness as he took a moment to study my face, as though he were assessing my well-being, before turning around and walking straight out of the hospital wing.
I tried my best not to break down into tears just as Madam Pomfrey came over to me and slid her way through my friends. "Out of the way," she said impatiently.She laid a warm hand across my forehead and pressed to fingers to my neck, checking my pulse. "There we are." She said triumphantly. "Wonderful."
Her eyes wandered down to my stomach, before they flashed back up to meet mine. She gave me a brief smile. "Everything looks good."
She gave me a quick nod before turning to Rose, Ruby, Lily and Albus. "Everyone out." She demanded. "Miss Beale and I need to speak in private."
Ruby, Albus and Rose let out a moan, but soon turned quiet when Madam Pomfrey gave them a glare. Lily nodded submissively and leant forward to give me a soft hug.
As she leant forward, she pressed her lips to my ear.
A/N: Well that's all for now, folks. Please favourite and review! You have no idea how much they motivate me to keep writing!
Chapter 14: The Forgotton
[Printer Friendly Version of This Chapter]
A/N: I know, I know. I'm a horribly awful person for waiting so long to update. I promise you I was down with the flu and in an ibuprofen-induced coma for the past few weeks. Since I made you wait so long, this chapter is extra long!
I don't want to make this author's note too long, but I just wanted to give a quick shout-out to Richard Griffiths (Uncle Vernon) who passed away on the 28th of March due to complications after heart surgery. I loved him and his character so much.
It's where your spirit seems to roam
Like losing faith to our abandoned
Or an empty hallway from a broken home.
The Forgotton - Green Day
I really hated the Hospital Wing.
This place held many awful (and embarrassing) memories for me.
That time in second year when I fell into the great lake and got hypothermia.
The night of Rose's fifteen birthday when I accidentally set fire to my hair with her birthday candles.
That incident in potions last year when I manged to turn my skin purple.
But none of them compared to now.
Never before had I been in so much pain, and never before had I felt so guilty. (Even more so than that time I fell onto Rose's cake)
The silence of the Hospital Wing was what irked me the most. Unusually, there were no other patients. This place was rarely empty, as someone was always suffering from some kind of illness or injury.
Every so often, I could swear I heard a noise coming from outside the double doors, as if someone were pacing back and forth. However, if I held my breath and listened intently, the noise would stop, and I would convince myself that it was all in my head.
As I sat alone in my solitary hospital bed, I contemplated the situation.
James knew I was pregnant.
Had he figured out he was the father?
What had happened after I had been knocked unconscious?
Where was Chastity?
I heard the click of the light in the Nurses office at the end of the hospital wing. Night was falling now. I laid my head back against the pillow and sighed in exasperation.
I knew nothing.
After my friends had left, Madam Pomfrey had sat down next to me, and told me about my injuries which she had managed to heal. My leg had been broken, as well as my right arm and wrist. Even my ribs had taken a bruising. But none of these mattered to me. All that mattered was that my baby was safe.
And for some unexplained miracle, it was.
I looked up when I heard the shuffling outside the Hospital Wing doors start again. I shook my head and held my breath. There was definitely someone out there.
I was about to call out to Madam Pomfrey in the Nurse's office when the doors were thrown open.
I sat up in the bed when I saw it was James who strode into the room. Although he walked with purpose, his thoughts seemed to be miles away. He walked to the foot of my bed, pulled out his wand, and with a cautious look to the closed door of the Nurse's office, whispered. "Muffliato"
I felt the nerves swirl around in my stomach as James started pacing back and forth, his eyes flicking around as though they were chasing his thoughts as they sprinted around the room.
A knot in my stomach formed when he stopped walking and finally raised his gaze to look me in the eye.
We stared in silence for a long time. Him, standing as still as a statue and as pale as a ghost, me sitting in the single hospital bed and holding my breath.
"Is it mine?"
His voice broke in the middle of his sentence and his eyes stared warily at me as he waited for my answer.
I swallowed hard and avoided his eyes, looking awkwardly around the room.
"Is what yours?"
James didn't seem to appreciate my cryptic answer. At all. He kicked the end of the bed in frustration "What do you think?" He shouted.
I winced and sat back in the bed. James, realising he was losing his cool, blew out a breath and pinched the bridge of his nose. "The baby. Is it mine?"
I ran a hand through my hair and looked down at the sheets which were covering the lower half of my body. I wanted to say something, but it was like I couldn't form the words. "Answer me!" James exclaimed
"Yes, okay?" The little colour that was in his face drained away entirely. "Yes! It's yours!"
I thought that once I had told the truth, I would feel better. James would know, and I wouldn't have to worry so much. I could actually concentrate on my baby and not all the secrets I was keeping. I was expecting it to feel like some weight had been lifted.
It didn't feel like that at all.
Watching James struggle to stay calm, as he turned his back to me, I felt even more guilty than before. Damn it, I should have just fled to Mexico when I had the chance.
"Fuck." James voice was loud and strong. He yanked his hands through his dark hair, making it even messier than usual. "Fuck!"
I bit my lip as I watched him walk around in a circle, trying to deal with the news.
"What are we going to do?" When his eyes met mine I could see they were full of torment, exactly as mine had been that night in the bathroom when I had just found out.
I cleared my throat. "I'm keeping it."
James looked back at me. I could tell he was at war with himself.
"Why didn't you tell me?"
I frowned, "I didn't know how you would react."
James let out a snort. "I didn't know how you would react, she says." He spoke out loud as if he were speaking to a third person in the room.
He turned back to me "You didn't know how I would react? That's it? You kept this secret from me for what, four months, because you didn't know how I would react?!" His voice was gradually getting louder and louder and I could physically see his face grow redder.
"How could I tell you? We weren't even speaking to each other until Christmas! And that didn't even last for a week!" I shouted back.
"Exactly! How do you expect us to raise a child together when we can't even last a week without fighting?"
"I never asked for this! It's not like it was a choice!" I yelled, tears threatening to fall.
James began grinding his teeth. "Neither did I! Do you think I wanted this? I'm seventeen, I don't even know the first thing about raising a child. I couldn't even keep a toad alive for more than a month!"
"That was when you were a kid!"
"Same difference! I'm not a father, that's the point."
The tears that had been brimming in my eyes spilled over as I stared at James, who was breathing heavily as he looked back at me.
I cleared my throat and wiped my eyes. "So what are you saying?"
James began pacing again. "I don't know. I don't fucking know!" His voice broke in the middle of the sentence. "You didn't even tell me, you didn't even give me a choice in the matter."
"What choice is there to make? What happened, happened."
"How could you keep something this big from me?" James turned his face away and I saw his swipe subtly at his eyes with his sleeve. "I just... I can't do this." And with that, he turned on his heel and marched back out of the Hospital Wing as he had earlier, once again leaving me in tears.
It was all out in the open now. I spent hours trying to fall asleep, I tossed and turned, thinking about what James had said. So he didn't want anything to do with me or our child now. Excellent.
I suppose there was only one thing left for me to do. Leave Hogwarts, go home to Mum, if she would take me, have the baby, and pray to Merlin that the media never find out my child's grandfather was Harry Potter.
Alright. I had a plan. That was an improvement, at least.
My resolve setting, I finally fell into a restless sleep.
I winced, scrunching my eyes against the morning light that was shining on my face.
I opened one eye slowly to see Madam Pomfrey standing beside my bed.
She had a cold flannel pressed to my forehead, as she dabbed lightly.
"Professor McGonagall has called for you." Madam Pomfrey gave me a tight smile, but we both knew what Professor McGonagall wanted me for.
"And does she...?" I coughed awkwardly, trailing off.
Madam Pomfrey nodded. "She is aware of your situation, yes. She agreed to wait until your health had improved before discussing the matter with you."
I took a deep breath. Of course McGonagall knew. I'm sure a duel between two students resulting in injury of one of them couldn't be kept a secret from the headmistress of Hogwarts. Is that what happened to Chastity then? Was she expelled?
"I have laid out your robes for you, take your time getting ready." With that, Madam Pomfrey left me to dress myself.
I noticed the robes she had given me were not my regular ones. These were bigger, especially around the middle. Were these maternity robes? Seriously?
I pulled them on over my head and my eyebrows rose in shock when I realised how comfortable they were. My Merlin, I could wear these all the time.
When I looked in the mirror on the wall, I saw my face was very pale. The dark bags under my eyes confirmed my sleepless night and my eyes themselves were puffy and blood-shot from crying.
Seeing my reflection only reminded my of last nights events. I blinked hard and swallowed harshly to fight against the lump forming in my throat. No. No more thinking about James. I could do this alone. I didn't need him.
I peeked out from behind the separator that offered me privacy from the rest of the hospital Wing. "Em... shall I go, then?" I called out to Madam Pomfrey. She emerged from the Nurse's office to walk over to me.
"I'll escort you."
The two of us walked in silence until we reached the ugly, stone gargoyle that guarded the Headmistress' office. I had never had to come here before. Only rule-breakers and disobedient students had to see the headmistress. I guess I was one of them now.
I clutched my stomach against the nervous butterflies that exploded when Madam Pomfrey uttered, "Albus Dumbledore." and the statue granted us entrance. Fuuuuuck.
Madam Pomfrey tapped a quick rhythm on the wooden door that lead to Professor McGonagall. A quiet but stern voice called, "Come in."
I looked to Madam Pomfrey who nodded at me and stepped back, suggesting I should go in alone. I took a deep breath and pushed open the door into the large circular room.
McGonagall sat behind the head desk in the room. I looked around in awe at the excessive amount paintings and shelves full of books that covered the walls in a way that should have looked cluttered, but somehow didn't.
As I approached the desk, Professor McGonagall stood, her tall frame draped in emerald green robes. Her grey hair was pulled back into a tight bun at the back of her head, and I couldn't help but imagine the horrid headache it must be causing her.
"Take a seat, Ms. Beale."
I gently lowered myself onto one of the chairs that were placed in front of the desk. Professor McGonagall eyed me as I nervously swallowed.
"How are you feeling?" McGonagall's voice was hard, but her eyes showed sympathy. I had never been a trouble-maker. In fact, in a group of people, I was always the quiet one. Not the one to end up sixteen and pregnant.
"Much better. Madam Pomfrey healed me almost completely." I was not surprised to find my voice sounded as quiet and meek as I felt. There was no denying it, I was utterly intimidated.
Professor McGonagall nodded. "And as I'm sure you have figured out, I have been informed of your situation."
I felt a blush spread over my cheeks. "Yes."
"I think it's time we discussed how this will affect your education."
I looked down at my lap and twisted my fingers around each other. McGonagall spoke again, "I also think this is a conversation that the father should be involved in, don't you?" her voice was surprising soft, like she were speaking to a reluctant hippogriff. "Who is it?"
I was about to make some excuse, when I heard a knock on the door of the office. She looked up at the noise in confusion.
"Come in." Her statement sounded like a question.
My eyes widened when the door opened slowly to reveal James.
He took a slow step into the office. McGonagall eyed him suspiciously. "I'm with another student at the moment, Potter." She gestured to where I sat, nervously twiddling my thumbs and looking everywhere but at the father of my child.
James cleared his throat. "I know." I heard him take a deep breath. "And I think this conversation is something I should be a part of." He released the breath and walked up to take the second seat facing McGonagall's desk.
"But.." I started.
James' head whipped to look at me. "What? You want to keep this from me too?" He asked angrily. I sunk back in my chair and reverted my eyes to look at the edge of the mahogany table, trying to ignore the petty tears I felt beginning to form.
Professor McGonagall began, "So, Potter, you are here because-" James interrupted, "It's my kid." He grit his teeth as he spoke. Out of the corner of my eye I saw McGonagall nod her head gently as if she weren't surprised.
I fought off the urge to look at James. I thought he didn't want to be involved? I had basically committed myself to the fact that I would have to be doing this alone, and now here he was, standing (okay, sitting) in front of the headmistress, admitting he was the one who got me pregnant.
I kept my eyes low and didn't say anything but out of the corner of my eye I saw McGonagall pick up a quill and begin scratching out a message onto a piece of parchment. James cracked his knuckles nervously just as she rolled up the parchment and walked over to one of the many windows adorning the wall of the office.
"Athena!" She called. Almost as soon as the words had left her mouth, a beautiful tawny owl flew to the window and outstretched it's foot for the letter to be tied to. McGonagall murmured, "The Potters." and the bird took flight.
She returned to her desk and sighed loudly. "Alright. Potter, Beale. I'm sure you both know what you did was wrong. I could sit here and lecture you all day about responsibility and the repercussions of your actions, but," Her eyes wandered to my stomach, which even though hidden by my new maternity robes, we all knew what was under there. "I'm fairly certain you already understand. It is not my place to discipline you about the results that come from recklessness."
"James, I have notified your parents and they shall be with us shortly. As for you, Ms Beale," McGonagall made a cradle with her hands and rested her chin on them as she looked at me over her small rectangular glasses. "I have been trying to get in contact with your mother since your..." She paused and pursed her lips. "accident." She rubbed a small hand across her forehead. "She was unable to come to Hogwarts due to her busy schedule."
As my eyes wandered around the room, I shrugged. I suppose some would wonder why I was not upset that my only parent had not made time to come and visit me while I was in hospital, but that was just how my mother was. She worked extremely hard, as she should. She was editor-in-chief at the Daily Prophet, and I understood how much she loved her job. Frankly it would be selfish of me to expect her to make unnecessary time for me.
I looked over Professor McGonagall's shoulder at the painting of Albus Dumbledore behind her. "However I have been assured that she would be joining us today."
I froze. "...Today?"
"I think it's about time, don't you?"
Frankly, all I had been really concerned with was James finding out, and now that I was over that hurdle, I was just faced with yet another challenge. I hadn't really given much thought to how my mother would react. We weren't very close, with her work and everything, but I hoped she would support me through this.
"As for your education, you are welcome to remain at Hogwarts until a few weeks before your due date." My due date. The day I would be giving birth. To an actual child.
I automatically looked over to the fireplace to the right of McGonagall's desk when it suddenly erupted in emerald green flames and the small frame of Ginny Potter stormed into the room. "Minerva?" She asked frantically, blinking rapidly as thought she were trying to focus on us. "What's wrong? I came as soon as I got your letter."
Her eyes flicked to me, and without waiting for McGonagall's answer, or even taking a breath, she raced forward and wrapped her arms around me in a tight hug. "Oh, Violet! We heard you were in the hospital wing. Harry and I, we were so worried for you!"
I automatically buried my face in her warm shoulder. The motherly care and sympathy I felt rolling off of her in waves only made the guilty knot in my stomach expand.
I heard, rather than saw the fireplace roar, alerting us to another person entering the office. I looked up over Ginny's shoulder, only to see the one and only Harry Potter, looking very confused and slightly uncomfortable by the scene in front of him.
He cautiously took a step forward. He looked over to his wife before speaking. "I came as fast as I could. What's going on?" His eyes fell to James who had been sitting silently through the entire exchange. "What have you done, James?"
"Why don't you both take a seat?" McGonagall extracted her wand and summoned two chairs to the front of her desk.
When Harry walked past me to take his seat, he placed a hand on my shoulder and squeezed it gently before sitting down to the right of James.
"Now," He took a breath, "Why are we here?" He asked McGonagall, shooting James and I a disconcerting look.
There was a moment in which nobody said anything. I could see McGonagall was struggling to find a nice way to phrase, "These children are irresponsible idiots and I suggest you punish them for being such insufferable fools." Just as she was about to answer, James beat her to it.
"Violet's pregnant." He uttered.
It took a moment for James' words to sink in before Ginny turned her head to look at me. "Really?" She bit her lip anxiously and grasped my hand. She seemed to be searching for the right words. "Do you need anything?" Her eyes examined mine before she began blasting question at me like a beater whacking bludgers. "How far along are you? Have you told your mother yet? Have you been to Madam Pomfrey? Are you on prenatal potion? Who's the father? Wha-" She stopped mid-sentence and turned to look at James. Nobody said anything and I could practically see the wheels in Ginny's head start turning. She let out a gasp. "No."
Harry hadn't said anything. It seemed as if he had worked out why he and his wife had been called to this meeting as soon as his son had spoken. He stared at the two of us with an unreadable expression as Ginny began babbling.
"Tell me this is some kind of joke." She reached across and shook James arm. "James Potter! Please, for the love of Merlin, tell me this is a prank!"
James looked up into his mother's eyes. He shook his head, a guilty expression his face.
Like a strike of lightening, Ginny's expression changed from one of confusion to absolute fury. "Are you serious?" She breathed out through her nose. "How could you possibly be so careless? You're only seventeen."
James kept his face low, not bothering to argue back. I understood why. He and I both knew what we had done was stupid. But there was no way to take it back.
Harry chose that moment to speak up. His voice was calm, but I could tell it was taking him a lot of effort to control himself. "I'm disappointed in you, James. What about your education?"
McGonagall cleared her throat. "James is in his seventh year. He can still continue his education as before and graduate as planned."
"What about Violet?" Ginny asked. "Does her mother even know what's going on?"
I heard James clench his teeth from the chair beside me. "Her mum didn't even bother to come and see her when she was in Hospital Wing."
I frowned, not liking what he was implying. It's not that my mother doesn't care about me, she just doesn't have a lot of time on her hands. "Hey. I was fine. She was busy. It has nothing to do with you, James."
James looked me in the eyes for the first time. His eyes were blazing with anger and I noticed for the first time just how stressed out he looked. He had circles under his eyes deep enough to even rival mine and he looked like he may fall asleep at any second. "Nothing to do with me? It had something to do with me when I was my your beside, day and night, for three days!" He slumped back in his seat. "Not that you give a shit."
"James!" Ginny scolded.
Before anyone could say anything, the flames in the fireplace turned green for the third time. But this time, my mother was the one who strode out into the office. She was wearing grey robes, and her hair was pulled up into a bun at the back of her head. Her dark brown hair had gained a few more silver and white strands since the last time I had seen her.
She looked at me through her small cat eye glasses that were perched at the end of her nose.
I squirmed under her gaze. Mum always had a way of looking at me as if I were under examination and could never measure up to her expectations.
Mum didn't usually bother with greetings. She liked getting things done quickly and efficiently. She spoke to McGonagall. "So I assume you've called me in because of this..." She waved her arm around as she thought of the correct word to use. "mishap that led to my daughter's hospitalization."
Ginny blinked and intervened. "I wouldn't call it a 'mishap', Adele. From what I heard, Violet was targeted by another student."
Mum gestured her arm through the air like she were waving away smoke from her face, dismissing what Ginny was saying. "It doesn't matter. Where is the other student now?"
I sat up. This was a question I had wondered about too.
Professor McGonagall wiped a hand over her shoulder. "Ms. Everlynch is in St. Mungo's Hospital at the moment. We believe her spell rebounded and threw her back against a wall." For some reason, McGonagall kept her eyes on James as she said this. "However, once she has regained her health, she will be expelled from Hogwarts for using magic against another student with the intention of harm."
Mum smiled. "Excellent. So are we done here? I need to get back to work. The newspaper's going to print in a few hours and I still haven't worked out the kinks in the layout of the front page, so if you would excuse me, I really must be go-"
McGonagall stood. "I don't think we have finished here, Ms. Beale."
Mum furrowed her brow and clicked her tongue. "Can we please speed this up a little, then?"
I took a deep breath, knowing she would prefer if we moved swiftly. It's best to do it fast, like ripping off a plaster. "Mum" I swallowed. "I-I'm pregnant."
My mother's expression didn't change. It was as if I had told her I had gotten a haircut or bought a new shade of nail polish.
She pursed her lips and continued to stare me down with her cold eyes searching mine. "Well." She said sharply. "I can't say I'm surprised."
I blanched. "What?"
Mum's stern expression didn't falter. "I always knew you would never amount to much."
I heard Ginny gasp behind me. My mouth popped open slightly as my mum continued. "You always were a disappointment to me."
Each word from her mouth hit me like a blow to the stomach. Where was this coming from? I knew my mother and I weren't very close, but I never, ever thought she thought so lowly of me.
"You have no ambition, no drive. You haven't achieved anything in your life, except getting yourself pregnant at sixteen." She laughed without humour. "And I can assume that you're the father, yes?" Now she spoke to James. His jaw was clenched and I could see a vein throbbing in his neck as he nodded at my mother.
She scoffed. "Well congratulations, Violet. You're having a lovechild with the son of the chosen one. A boy who can live off his father's fame for the rest of his life without ever having to work for anything." She held her nose high in the air.
"Oi!" It was Harry who spoke. "That's my son you're talking about."
Mum didn't remove her icy stare from me. "I am well aware."
She moved on, "How could you possibly be so stupid?" I couldn't reply due to the rather large lump in my throat at the tears that were blurring my eyes.
"You'll end up alone and caring for a child by yourself. Mark my words." She turned on her heel and started walking towards the fireplace.
"Mum..." I choked out through the tears.
She flipped back around to stab me with her cold stare once again. "You are no daughter of mine."
And with that, my mother flooed out of the office, leaving me alone, in tears, with no back-up plan.
Ginny rushed over to be and wrapped me into a hug. "Oh, Violet." Her voice was choked up and it was then that I realised that she had begun to cry too. "I'm sorry, sweetheart." She rocked me gently back and forth. "I'm so so sorry." Her kind, motherly words induced the tears that I had been holding back to begin to flow once again. The sobs that emitted from me were honestly really embarrassing, but I couldn't seem to stop myself. My mum was my only family. Now I had no one. No one but my baby, who would have to deal with my shitty parenting and would probably end up hating me.
Ginny pulled back and looked at me as if she could hear my thoughts. "You have us. We'll help you through this." Ginny reached out and placed her hand on top of James. "This isn't the end of the world."
Harry placed a hand on his son's shoulder. "We'll get through this." James wouldn't look at me, but it seemed like he was close to tears too.
What a mess.
That night I was sat up in bed, unable to sleep. Again.
After I was welcomed back to my dorm by Rose, Alex, Ruby and Missy, I spent the majority of the day in bed. The girls all assumed it was because I was too tired after my stint in the Hospital Wing, but the truth was the emotional strain was beginning to take it's toll on me. Not only losing my mother, but the pressure of keeping this secret from my friends.
Only Rose knew that I was pregnant, but even she didn't know who the father was.
They all slept soundly in their beds, except for Rose's expected snoring, oblivious to my struggles. What was I going to do about money? Where would I live? I had been relying entirely on my mother, and now she had abandoned me... well, I have no idea how things would play out.
And James. His parent's had agreed to help me, but him? I had no idea how he felt. He had showed up at the headmistress' office, and owned up to being the father, but he had not given me the impression that he wanted to do it. I didn't want to force him into something he didn't want, especially if it meant he would end up resenting me, or worse, his child.
I ran a hand over the my stomach through the fabric of my tank top. Looking around in the dim light at the beds of my friends and insuring they were all asleep, I cautiously lifted my top up, revealing my small bump. I ran a hand over the slight swell protruding between my hips. It's so weird to think that there was a baby in there. Like, an actual kid. My kid. I haven't even met it yet and already I could never imagine leaving it the way my mother had left me.
My thoughts were interrupted my a quiet knock on the window of the dorm. The heavy red curtains had been drawn so I couldn't see outside. Unsure what to do, I instinctively picked up my wand and pointed at the window. The knock sounded again, but slightly louder this time.
Quietly, I climbed off of my bed and tip-toed to the window. Keeping my wand pointed forward, I lifted my left hand and slowly peeled back the curtain. Outside the window, floating on his broom, was a tired looking James.
I stared at him for a moment before unlocking the latch that held the window closed. I pushed it open wide enough for him to climb in, taking his broom with him. He clambered in, landing softly on his feet and checking to see if he had woken anyone.
I took a deep breath and ignored the slight dizziness I felt at the sight of James in his pyjamas. I looked down at myself and blushed when I realised my top was still bunched up under my boobs, revealing my stomach. I reached up to pull it back down, but James grabbed my hand.
James looked down at me, as if silently asking permission. My breath hitched in my throat as I slowly nodded. He reached down warily, unsure of himself, and gently pressed his hand against my stomach. He exhaled and slowly looked at me, a glimmer in his eyes that made me smile. He moved his hand across my bump, making my heart beat harder.
He swallowed hard. "We're in this together." He whispered.
I nodded, unable to speak.
"This is my kid too." James muttered fervently. He removed his hand from my stomach and helped me pull down my tank top. "I just wanted you to know that, I don't want you to worry about me not being committed to this."
He stood back up to his full height. "I should go."
He went to the window to leave, but I found myself reaching forward to touch his arm. "James... could- could you stay with me? I don't want to be by myself tonight." I chewed on my lip nervously.
James ran a hand through his messy hair, in thought. After a moment, he nodded. "Sure."
I sat down on the bed and made room for him on the other side. He climbed in under the covers and I reached to turn off the lamp beside my bed. Half-pulling the curtain around my bed closed, I got under the covers and stared at the ceiling in the dark.
And just like that, with James beside me, for the first time in a long time, I slept through the whole night.
A/N: Thank you all so much for reading! I'll try and update the next chapter sooner than I did this one. As usual, please review, they always inspire me and make me smile :)
Chapter 15: Only Love
[Printer Friendly Version of This Chapter]
I'm not entirely happy with this chapter, but I figure I've already kept it from you for long enough, so here you go!
Only love, only love.
Give me shelter, or show me heart
Come on love, come on love.
Only Love - Ben Howard
I woke up gradually, the vague mist of my dreams slowly evolving into the hard reality of day. Except for some reason reality wasn't hard today. In fact, it was soft...And warm?
So. freakin'. warm.
There was an unexplainable heat consuming my body. I felt a mild panic begin to mingle with my utter confusion as I found I could not roll away from it or shake it off. I slowly cracked open one eye and in the dim light, I took in my surroundings. Everything seemed to be as it should. I was in my dorm, in my bed. Nothing strange... except for the long arm draped across me. I squeaked and quickly covered my mouth with my hand.
Memories of last night came flooding back in a rush. James Sirius Potter at my window. James Sirius Potter agreeing to help me through this. James Sirius Potter in my bed. And now, James Sirius Potter, asleep, and practically crushing me to his chest. I felt his warm breath puffing against the back of my neck as I remembered the previous night's events.
What could have possibly come over me that I had invited James into bed with me? My money was on my insane hormones.
This was not a good idea, not a good idea at all. Judging by the dim light surrounding the bed, I'd say it would be safe to assume that it was still quite early in the morning. Hopefully, I could find a way to wake up James, sneak him out of the room and get back into bed without waking the other girls.
I knew if we were caught like this, they would all just jump to the wrong conclusion, especially Ruby, as she was the only one who knew of our past... endeavours.
Okay. How do I do this?
First things first, I need to escape his death-grip.
I gently reached an arm out to the edge of the bed and gripped on tightly. I slowly started to pull myself out of James' warm embrace, yanking myself free using only one arm. I was just starting to make leeway when James grip on my waist tightened.
I stopped. Was he awake?
I twisted around to see him and was met with a sight that made my heart melt. James was lying on his side, his arm reached out to stop me from pulling away. His eyes were closed, thankfully. His eyelashes were so dark and long, I found myself fighting off a weird sense of jealousy.
He looked so peaceful in his slumber; the ever-present frown that had recently taken up residence between his eyebrows had vanished. His lips were pouted out gently and I wanted nothing more than to press my own lips to them again. But I couldn't. Ugh.
James had pulled me back to him in such a way that I was now somewhat trapped in his arms. His head lolled forward to nestle against my neck and he let out a huff of satisfaction.
I shouldn't wake him. Not when he's so peaceful. What kind of person would that make me? And perhaps, maybe, I could lie here for a while in his arms and pretend he actually liked me that way and that I totally hadn't mucked up my life.
Yeah. I like that plan.
My eyes opened with a start. Things were just as they had been when I had woken up the first time. That was, except for the racket coming from the dorm around me.
"Watch where you're walking!"
"Oi, no fighting this early in the morning."
"She started it!"
"There we go. I finished it. Can you stop acting like five year olds now?"
I heard a series of muffled grumbles coming from the other girls.
I stiffened during the tirade, afraid one of them would come over to my bed, pull back the curtains, and find I wasn't alone.
It seemed as though I wasn't the only one this thought occurred to as I felt James freeze beside me and quickly release me from his arms. He was awake.
I risked a glance at James who, although scratching his eyes and adorably cute from just waking up, mirrored my expression of worry.
"Is Violet up yet?"
My eyes flashed to James' again.
"Go wake her up for me, will you?"
The voice I recognised to be Ruby's hummed in agreement. "Violio! Wakey wakey, rise and shine!" The enthusiastic words were paired with the sound of feet hitting the floor in a series of upbeat skips leading to my bed. I saw the curtains around me ruffle as Ruby grabbed ahold of them. I looked desperately to James one last time.
The curtains pulled back and Ruby's face came into view.
"Eh.." I began, my mind racing to come up with an excuse to explain to her why I was in bed with they guy I slept with not four months earlier.
Ruby swiped at her eye and smiled at me. "It's time to get up. It's your first day of classes since your epic duel and rumours have been flying around the school like mad. You need to go and show them that you whipped that bitch's ass and that you aren't afraid to do it to anyone else who looks at you the wrong way!"
I stared at Ruby dumbfounded. I slowly turned to look at James but was shocked to find that I was in bed alone.
I stuttered, "Yeah, yeah... okay. I'll- I'll do that."
She gave me a nod and turned to go back to her side of the room to get changed. I looked back to the other side of the bed in confusion once more time. I patted the bed carefully and picked up a pillow to look underneath it. Had I just imagined having James here with me?
Just as I was about to declare myself clinically insane, I saw Ruby stop walking randomly in the middle of the room.
"Hey," She began. "Whose broom is this?"
I halted once again as I looked up to her. She was pointing down to James' broom which was laid haphazardly on the floor beside the window. "This is James' broomstick, isn't it?" She asked confusedly.
My mouth popped open. "No..." I saw Rose, Alex and Missy all look over to Ruby as she poked at the broom with her bare foot.
"Yes it is. It's the LightningDart5000."
"Is it?" I stroked my chin as if in deep befuddlement. "How peculiar. Alas, we are attending a school of magic. Lots of strange things happen here. Am I right?" I giggled nervously again and stopped abruptly with a snort.
"Violet..." Rose trailed off.
I twisted to look at her sitting up in her bed. "Yes?"
"Why is there a foot sticking out from under your bed?"
I laughed lightly. "Oh, is there? How strange."
All four girls looked at me through sleep-filled eyes like they were worried for my sanity
I was unsure how to explain myself and was just mapping out the quickest escape route in my head when I heard a grumble come from the bed underneath me.
I saw James army crawl out from under the bed and give all the girls a quick wave. "Ladies." He greeted, like it was the most usual thing for a teenage boy to be hiding out under someones bed all night. I slapped a hand over my mouth dramatically.
"J-James?" I gasped, pressing the hand against my chest. "What on earth are you doing here?" I exaggerated each word in the hopes that it would make my surprise more realistic. I don't think anyone bought it though, judging by the smirks plastered on each girl's face.
A huge smile spread over Ruby's face. "I knew it!" She cackled. "Pay up!" She called out to the room in general. I saw Rose reach under her bed before tossing a pouch of tinkling coins over to Alex who was standing beside her bed. Alex in turn Alex tossed the pouch to Ruby.
"How long have you two been together?" Alex asked conspiratorially.
I swallowed awkwardly. "It isn't what it looks like-"
"Sure, sure." I saw Alex roll her eyes.
James sighed as he pushed himself up to his feet. "It really isn't what it looks like." He brushed some dust from climbing under my bed off his grey t-shirt. "I should go." He rubbed a hand through the already out-of-control mess that was his hair. "Or else I probably won't be able to get breakfast before Ancient Runes."
I nodded and James turned to walk towards me, to do what, I'm not sure, but seemed to think better of it before stopping and nodding back at me stiffly.
I heard Ruby chuckle. "Oh, don't hold back on the snogging on our account, you guys."
I rolled my eyes. "Nothing happened!"
All the girls chuckled. James gave them all an awkward wave and looked over to me. He gave me a small secret smile that made my stomach twist delightfully just as he hopped on his broomstick and skillfully maneuvered his way out of the window.
As soon as he was gone, I began getting dressed quickly, ignoring all the cat-calls from the other girls and deferring all their questions about our 'relationship' ("were we dating or were we just snogging buddies?") by telling them repeatedly that nothing had happened and that we were just friends.
I put on my usual school robes (I would miss the comfort of the maternity robes, but I couldn't risk somebody recognising the difference) and ducked out of the room while Rose was in the shower and the girls were busy getting ready.
I avoided them all between classes for the rest of the morning. I knew Rose especially would be bursting with questions that I just couldn't answer yet. Of course she knew about my perpetual crush on James, as well as the baby, but had she put two and two together yet, especially after finding him in my bed this morning?
If the way she was looking at me was any indication, she definitely had her suspicions about James and I. In fact, I'd say the parentage of my child was fairly obvious. Maybe she wouldn't figure it out, but I wasn't going to give her a chance to confront me about it.
I had so many conflicting emotions swirling around my head, it was hard to keep up with the whirlwind of thoughts. I felt as though my head would explode at some point. There was James, agreeing to help me and be there for the baby. This made me happy. Knowing that he would never like me how I liked him, nearly broke me. But I couldn't dwell on that.
There was Ruby and Alex, my friends who knew nothing of my secret. This made me regretful. There was Rose, my very best friend who I was doing my very best to keep in the dark at all costs. This made me guilty. And my mother, who I had refused to think of until now. I felt as though a piece of my heart had taken from me. She was my mother, the woman who has raised me, practically alone. She was the only family I had ever known.
And to top it all off, the reason for all my problems. The baby. Although the baby was the cause of my anxiety, I couldn't find it in myself to resent it, even a little bit. And although I was sixteen and this was stupid and I was irresponsible, and I knew I would end up regretting a lot of things in my life, I knew the baby wasn't one of them.
I looked up from the parchment on my desk that I had been doodling on. Now that I looked at it, the previously innocent lines and swirls seemed to resemble and all too familiar sleeping face. I quickly slammed my charms book on top of the offending portrait.
"Yes?" I looked up at Professor Charleston, the charms professor. He was new to the school this year, a middle-aged man with a bald patch, pot belly and constant sheen of sweat covering his forehead.
In his small chubby hand he clutched a piece of parchment that had been folded several times. He wheezed out a breath as he reached in the pocket of his tartan cloak and extracted his cloth handkerchief before swiping it across his forehead. "The headmistress wishes to see you as soon as possible. You are excused from class." His formal Central London accent was punctuated with deep gasps as he spoke, again running the piece of material across his face.
As I stood from my desk and placed the parchment in between the pages of my book, the class erupted in murmured "ooh's," and shouts of "what have you done to get sent to the headmistress, Violet?" I kept my head down and rushed out of the room with my book clutched tightly to my chest, nodding at professor Charleston as I left.
I dropped my book and quill back in the Gryffindor common room before heading up to McGonagall's office, much more at ease as I had been the day before. Her attitude had been, although mildly strict, fairly understanding and accommodating. I appreciated her letting me stay at Hogwarts for as long as I could before I became my own planet.
I did, however, wonder why I was being summoned to her so soon after we had spoken. Things the day before had ended on a fairly conclusive note.
After uttering the password to the stone statue guarding the office, I taped timidly on the main wooden door and waited for a reply. I entered at the sound of Professor McGonagall's voice, and walked into the office to see James had been called as well.
He gave me a smile that I couldn't help but return. When I pulled my eyes away from his, I found we weren't the only visitors to the room.
Ginny was sitting in one if the office chairs in a pair of really pretty lavender robes. She gave me a soft smile.
"What are you doing here?" I asked, taking a step into the room.
Ginny said, "I know you were planning to have your scans and check ups here with Madam Pomfrey, but I was doing some thinking last night, and I think it would be best if we took you to a specialist in St. Mungo's, especially after the incident."
I nodded and looked James. I noticed his jaw clench as Ginny said "incident," but other than that his face held a fairly neutral expression.
"I'm sorry we had to pull you both from class," Ginny continued, "but I'd prefer if we got you completely checked as soon as possible, Violet."
James shrugged and with a grin, said, "I'm only missing divination."
I stifled back a chuckle. It was no secret that James had inherited his aunt Hermione's distaste for the subject.
I saw Ginny smirk a little before turning to Professor McGonagall. "I'll have them back in about an hour, Minerva."
McGonagall patted the hair at the side of her head. "Absolutely."
James, Ginny and I lined up beside the fireplace. They each took a handful of floo powder and in turn disappeared in the emerald flames. As it was my turn to go, I stepped into the green fire and looked to McGonagall.
"Good luck." She stated.
We reached St. Mungo's quite quickly and Ginny swiftly brought us to the maternity department. As a kind young Healer spoke to Ginny briefly, James approached me. "I'm sorry about this morning." he murmured in my ear. I shivered involuntarily and tried to remember how to speak.
"...That's okay," I said. "But now all my friends think we're dating." I giggled nervously and heard James laugh quietly, although it did seem a little forced.
Just then the Healer began to lead the three of us to a small examination room. When we reached the room, he indicated I should sit on the examination table propped up in the centre. I hopped up on the table, my feet hanging several inches off the ground as I swung them back and forth nervously. James took a seat in the chair beside me and Ginny stayed standing in a subsidiary fashion.
"Healer Clearwater will be in with you shortly." The other Healer left, closing the door gently behind him.
The three of us sat in compatible silence, the only noise a soft ticking coming from a clock mounted on the wall as we waited for the healer to arrive. I saw James tapping his foot nervously as he glanced around the small room. Ginny kept shooting me supportive smiles as I bit my lip and wringed my hands.
The door opened suddenly and I looked up from my lap into the eyes of a very short, timid looking healer in white robes with long, curly hair and tired eyes.
"You must be Violet," She said kindly. I attempted to give her a smile, but the nerves soon took over and I stopped trying. She reached over and shook my embarrassingly clammy hand firmly. "I'm Healer Clearwater." I liked her instantly. She just had one of those faces you could trust.
Healer Clearwater turned to embrace Ginny. "Penelope." Ginny muttered as she hugged the other woman. "It's good to see you again." I looked at James in confusion as to how the two women knew each other, but he simply shrugged in response.
"How's Percy?" The Healer asked cautiously.
Ginny replied, "He and Audrey are doing well. Thank you for asking." Her voice was kind.
I saw the Healer sigh in disappointment before turning back to me. She reached up with her index finger and pushed up the pair of glasses that perched on the end of her nose. "So, you are here for your fifteen week check-up?" She asked while consulting the folder she had just picked up.
I took a deep breath and replied. "Yep." There was a moment of silence before Ginny intervened. "Violet was injured recently. She went to Madam Pomfrey and was assured that the baby was fine, but we just want to be sure."
Healer Clearwater smiled and patted my knee gently. "Madam Pomfrey sent over all your information a few minutes ago." She cleared her throat. "She had a lovely owl." I twisted my mouth awkwardly as she continued on and explained the process by which she would get a clear scan of the baby. She helped me lay back on the examination table and pulled out a jar of what appeared to be a potion of some kind, its consistency quite gooey. It reminded me of the jelly they serve at the end-of-year feast.
Come to think of it, I would really love some of that jelly now.
While slyly wiping the slight drool from the edge of my mouth and convincing myself not to eat the potion Healer Clearwater had now extracted from its jar, I began to roll up the hem of my white school blouse as she had instructed me to. I saw James look away out of the corner of my eye, obviously trying to give me privacy, as if he hadn't seen it before.
Healer Clearwater spread the warm goop over my stomach in an even layer. She took a step back and rolled up her sleeves. "Are you ready?" She asked with a slight grin. I nodded silently, suddenly over-taken with nerves. I held my breath as she pointed her wand at the gentle swell of my belly and declared, "Praesenti manifesto."
Immediately after the words left her mouth, the room became filled with a steady whirring noise. Even though I had already mentally prepared myself for the sight that followed, the blurry projection that materialised in the air in front of me made my throat grow tight. There, in front of me, was the outline of my baby.
I heard a small gasp come from behind me. I pulled my eyes away from the blurry image of my child to look at Ginny, who had a hand clasped over her mouth as she took in the picture of her first grandchild. I grinned at looked back at what could possibly be the most beautiful thing I had ever seen.
Curious, I peeked at James under my lashes. His eyes were wide as he examined the moving picture in front of him, his lips parted slightly as he released a soft "wow."
Healer Clearwater looked at me after examining the picture. "Everything looks wonderful." She reached with her index finger to point at the vague round outline. "That's the head." She brought her finger back through the air to trace around the curved outline attached to the head. "The body," she said with a smile. "And these little things are the hands."
The emotion that built up inside of me until I felt I could no longer bear it. If I thought I loved this kid before, it was nothing compared to the absolute adoration I felt now. I didn't realise I had tears streaming down my face until I felt a soothing hand wipe them away gently.
My eyes flickered to James as he stroked my cheek absent-mindedly with his thumb. Our eyes met and I could see my joy reflected there. It didn't matter how this had happened. It didn't matter that everyone would be talking about us. All that mattered was the child we shared, nestled safely inside me.
"I'll leave you alone for a moment." I barely heard Healer Clearwater's voice before I heard Ginny murmur a small thank you. She walked over to us and clasped my hand. I looked up at her and I could see the tears forming in her eyes as she swallowed.
The three of us held hands in silence, watching the most magical thing I had ever witnessed undulate around in the air in front of us.
Suddenly, I heard Ginny clear her throat "I was speaking to Harry." James and I both turned our attention to her before she spoke again. She took a deep breath before doing so, "It won't be long until someone finds out about this and reveals your secret." She said.
I bit my lip nervously as I tried to figure out where she was going with that line of thought. "And when that happens, you know the press will be all over it. Especially Irina Skeeter." Ginny shuddered. "That girl is even worse than her mother, I tell you."
James rubbed his temple, as though trying to soothe a head ache. "So?"
Ginny scratched the side of her hand. "So when that happens, we want to be prepared."
I watched her carefully and swallowed. "And how do we do that?"
"Harry and I both agree that the best thing to do is present a... united front." Ginny took a pause as she looked between the two of us. "We believe it would be best if it seemed like the two of you were an item." She said quickly. She stopped to see what we thought before saying anything else.
James' brow furrowed. "You mean pretend like we were dating?" He asked in confusion.
"Exactly." Ginny pursed her lips. "And that you still are."
I raised my eyebrows and looked to James. His face was, as usual, totally unreadable. "And how exactly does that help us?" I asked, brushing a piece of dark hair that had fallen free of my ponytail behind my ear.
Ginny sighed. "Well, we hope this situation will seem less scandalous if it appears to be more of an accidental grievance rather than a totally unplanned one-night stand." She looked sternly at the two of us. "We just hope it will make people by more sympathetic towards you rather than judgemental."
I raised my hand slightly. "That's a great idea and all, but the we haven't been dating. Nobody will believe us if we just claim it out of the blue."
James rubbed the back of his neck and grunted. "That's not necessarily true." I stared at him in confusion. "Your dormmates..." He trailed off.
"Oh." A light bulb seemed to go off in my head "Oooh." I turned back to him. "That may work."
Ginny raised her hand to block of the explanation I was about to throw at her. "I don't want to know!" I chuckled as she handed me a few napkins. I began wiping the hardening jelly off my stomach as I thought over her suggestion.
"So, what do you think?" She asked finally.
James and I looked at each other briefly before turning back to her.
Just to let you know, I won't be updating for a couple of weeks due to exams which are starting in a few days (eeep)
I really hope nobody will give up on this story, because I WILL be back (terminator voice)
So that's it! Thank you for reading. As usual, please review, they always bring a smile to my face.
Chapter 16: But It's Better If You Do
[Printer Friendly Version of This Chapter]
Exams are over! YAY. To celebrate, here's the next chapter. So sorry for the long wait.
But, but I'm afraid that I
Well, I may have faked it
And I wouldn't be caught dead in this place
Panic! At The Disco - But It's Better If You Do
James' brow furrowed. "You mean pretend like we were dating?" He asked in confusion.
"Exactly." Ginny pursed her lips. "And that you still are."
"So, what do you think?" She asked finally.
James and I looked at each other briefly before turning back to her.
After our classes were over that very same evening, James and I met in the common room to talk about how we would work things out. My main concern was telling our friends our secret as soon as possible.
Time was running out for us to come clean before they found out I was pregnant from someone else, or figured it out on their own. I didn't know how they would react, especially once they knew James was the father.
I was unsure of so much, and I really hated it.
James leaned forward, resting his elbows on his knees. “How do you think we should tell them?” His voice was gentle, like he was afraid I might panic if he spoke louder than a whisper. I think he could sense my unease, and Merlin knows the sudden increase in hormones put me in constant danger of bursting into tears for practically no reason at any moment.
I cleared my throat, and looked down, felling slightly ashamed. “Well… Rose and Lily already know.” I winced as I waited for him to reply, afraid he would be upset that others had found out before him.
James sighed. “I know they do, Violet.”
I looked up suddenly, dropping the bracelet charm I had been fiddling with in my lap. “How did you know they know?” I asked in surprise. James seemed a little uncomfortable as he shifted on the cushion he was seated on.
“When you were… hurt,” James swallowed harshly, looking down. “They were worried about you. They were worried about the baby. It just slipped out.” He twisted his mouth as he looked away, like it was difficult for him to look me in the eye.
I took a deep breath. I didn't blame either of them for telling the secret. In fact, I was sort of relieved. It saved me having to come clean, and honestly I knew they only told because they cared about me. I couldn't be angry at them for that.
I released the air I had been holding and nodded. “Okay.”
James seemed somewhat surprised that I had dropped the subject so fast, but quickly changed his face back to his usual unreadable expression. I ran my foot along the carpeted floor beneath the window seat we were perched on together as I thought about how we should tell our friends.
“I think we should just do it fast. Just sit them down and tell them,” James nodded along, agreeing with me. “And the sooner the better.” He added, making sure to keep his voice down so the few people in the common room didn't overhear our conversation.
Aside from that, we also had to convince people we were a couple. I blushed when I thought about what that would entail. Would we have to, er, show affection? How far were we willing to take this? And would anyone even believe us?
I suppose it would be fairly easy on my part, what with my friends knowing about my perpetual crush on the guy. They would know that I would jump at the chance to be James’ girlfriend.
But what about James’ friends? I suppose to them, our seemingly sudden relationship would be random and totally unexpected. Would they believe us at all? Would they buy James taking a sudden interest in me even though he had shown no signs of attraction before?
I tried to hide my disappointment at that thought. Yeah, James had agreed to fake-date me. That still didn't mean anything. He was protecting his dad’s reputation, as well as his own. It really had nothing to do with him and his feelings for me, of which I am sure he had none.
“Hey,” I heard James say. “What’s wrong?” I looked up at him and sighed, shaking my head. Trying to reassure him, I forced a smile. “Nothing.” He didn't seem to believe me, judging by the doubtful expression on his face.
He chewed on his lip and looked down at his lap. It seemed like he was having somewhat of an internal battle with himself as he thought of what to say next.
“This isn't about us ‘dating’ is it?” He made the air quotes with his fingers while he talked, “because, if it is..” James stopped and dragged a hand through his messy hair as he trailed off, looking around the quiet common room as if searching for inspiration of what to say next. “We don’t have to do anything, if- if you don’t want to.” He swallowed. “I don’t want you to feel uncomfortable.”
I felt touched that James was willing to risk his entire life if I wasn't happy with our arrangement. But that totally wasn't the case. I mean, aside from the fact that it would be another lie to keep up with, the deal was pretty sweet. Come on, I’m not going to lie here. The chance to pretend that James was my boyfriend was brilliant, even if it was just all make-believe, even just for a little while.
“No- I’m okay with the plan,” I scratched the back of my neck stiffly. Something shifted in James’ eyes and for a moment, he looked almost pleased. “I mean, we can try.” James chewed on his thumb while he mulled over my words.
“Yeah,” He said. “We can try.” Glad that we were both in agreement, I smiled at him. He returned it with his signature crooked grin and the ever-present butterflies in my stomach picked up yet again. They never seemed to go away, no matter how much time I spent with him.
“So when should we tell everyone?” I asked anxiously, chewing my lower lip. James’ eyes drifted over my shoulder and he let out a nervous chuckle.
“No time like the present.”
Before I could even respond, I heard the thump of enthusiastic footsteps. “Well, well, well, what do we have here?” I looked around at the familiar voice and saw Ruby skipping towards the two of us with a huge grin on her face and a mischievous twinkle in her eye. “Why, it’s the two lovebirds!,” she teased.
I sighed and looked at James. Slowly, I mouthed, “I want to tell everyone together.” He nodded mutely and faced Ruby.
“Where is everyone else?” He inquired, leaning back in the seat and crossing one of his long legs over the other knee. Ruby jumped down to sit in between us, smiling brightly and indicated to the old clock placed on the wooden table to the left of us. "It's almost dinner time. Everyone will be down in the great hall."
James ran a hand through his hair again, one of his most nervous habits. I swallowed harshly as I started to notice some of the other students start to leave the common room, presumably on their way to get their dinner. James sighed, stood up quickly, and offered me his hand.
Here goes nothing.
“What’s going on?” Fred didn't try very hard to mask the suspicion in his voice.
I turned to James, hoping he would start the explanation. He rolled his eyes at me and faced our friends.I looked down at all our friends sitting down in front of us. Fred, Albus, Alex, Ruby, Rose and Scorpius.
Herding them together hadn't been as difficult as I thought it would have been. After dinner, they had all followed us soundlessly to the Room of Requirement, their curiosity apparently their driving fuel.
The room was small but cosy, providing a soft couch for our friends to sit on. James and I stood in front of them.
Well, I stood in front of them. James paced.
He tugged at his ear. He opened and closed his mouth a few times, as if he were unsure how to begin. “So.. Violet and I have some news,” He said nervously.
I captured my bottom lip between my teeth and began chewing fiercely. His voice broke the silence again. “It may come as a bit of a shock to you.“
Before I knew what he was doing, I felt his strong arm wrap awkwardly around my shoulder. While fighting the feeling of warmth I felt spread through my chest, I almost missed what he said next.
Nobody said a word in reply, the shocked gasps and grins emitting from our friends mouths were response enough.
“So it's true!” Alex exclaimed, reaching across the couch to high-five Albus. He smiled at her happily as he settled back in his seat. “Frankly, I knew it was just a matter of time before you told us.” He said, with a smug smirk on his face.”I told everyone so.”
Fred nodded, “It’s true. He did.” Scorpius joined in with the nodding.
James squeezed my upper arm reassuringly. “Yeah, well. We've been dating for quite a long time now.”
Cries of “I told you so”s and “Five galleons please!“ were chattered excitedly between the group as James and I looked at each other. I knew our friends were somewhat rooting for us to get together, especially after the girls reaction this morning. But I had no idea we had been a topic of discussion and debate among them.
I silently watched Rose, the only one who had not spoken since our revelation. She sat staring into space, seemingly in deep contemplation. I think I knew what she was thinking about. I took a deep breath to explain James’ involvement in my pregnancy, but she beat me to the punch.
“Well," Her voice was quiet. “what about Chastity?”
I felt James’ firm grip on my arm falter momentarily and I froze.
James and I hadn't thought about how to explain Chastity. If we had been dating for the past four months, how did that explain him having a girlfriend for the past two weeks?
My teeth’s grip on my lip increased until I tasted blood.
The group in front of us all fell into silence as they awaited an explanation.
I racked my brain. How did we explain this?
I was about to burst into tears and admit defeat just as James spoke up.
“Violet didn't want people to know we were a couple.”
His explanation was poor at best. And honestly, I was annoyed he was choosing to blame me as an excuse.
Indignant, I raised a finger. “Now hang on just one second.” I interrupted.
James shot me a sly warning look, immediately shutting me up. His eyes told me he had a plan.
Deciding to trust him, I closed my mouth with a pop.
He turned away from me again, taking his arm with him. I had to stop myself from making a pathetic whimper at the loss.
He carried on. “So anyway, Violet and I had a fight on New Year’s Eve. I said either we tell people we were dating or we would break up. I wanted everyone to know we were a couple, but Vi wouldn't hear of it.” His eyes slid back to me, and I saw a mischievous twinkle in them. The little bugger was messing with me. “So we decided we should break up for a while.”
Alex huffed. “On the night of your breakup you started going out with someone else?”
Ruby crossed her arms. “That was a dick move, Potter.”
James ran a hand through his messy hair, ruffling it up even more. “I was mainly going out with Chastity to make Violet jealous.” He watched me and tilted his head to the side. Surprisingly, I found his expression to be very sincere. I had to admit, it was a good story. Heck, I almost believed him there for a second.
Our friends burst into chatter once again, talking away to each other animatedly. Apparently, the had been convinced. James cleared his throat. “Guys.”
They ignored him, continuing to babble on.
“Guys.” He emphasised. Again, no one responded.
I pursed my lips and exhaled through my nose. “Guys!” I called out loudly. They all silenced and looked at me expectantly.
“There’s more,” I said simply. Rose clasped her hands and looked at me sympathetically. In that moment I knew she had figured everything out. She knew James was the one to get me pregnant, and she knew I was about to tell everyone now. In a movement so quick I almost missed it, she nodded her head mutely. The small act of support was the only push I needed.
Silence fell around the room in a way that could only be described as uncomfortable. Each face staring back at us had their mouths hanging open bar Rose, who sat with a small smile of satisfaction. James returned his arm around my shoulders.
“That was a little more abrupt than I would have done it, but okay.” He whispered good-naturedly in my ear. I lifted my hand to squeeze his as it hung over my shoulder.
Ruby’s eyebrows knit together. “I knew you two had slept together, but I had no idea…”
Fred shook his head. “Neither.”
I briefly remembered seeing Fred’s nod to James as he pulled me from the pub that October night. I hadn't really ever given much thought to how much he knew about us.
At least I could stop worrying now. Everything was out in the open now. Well… at least almost everything. Suddenly, James’ arm around my shoulder felt like a weight, burdening me. I casually took a step out of his reach and wrapped my arms around myself. I had confessed one secret only to gain another. When would the lying ever stop?
Albus rubbed his jaw before he spoke. “Do mum and dad know?” He asked carefully.
James was nodding before I even opened my mouth to reply. “They weren't very happy.” He shrugged. “But they came around. Mum, especially.”
“That’s good.” Albus sighed in relief.
“What about your mum, Vi?” Rose inquired, twisting a piece of red hair back behind her ear.
The sudden ache in my heart had me swallowing to avoid tears once again. I would not allow myself to be upset anymore. I had pushed all thoughts of my mother and her abandonment from my mind and I wasn't about to revisit them.
Seeing me struggling, James reached for me again and tucked me under his shoulder comfortingly. “She didn't take it so well.” I saw him shoot them all a head shake, signalling them to not say anything more. I bit the inside of my cheek harshly, trying to distract myself from my oncoming tears.
Trying to diffuse the situation, Fred jumped up. “Er… Congratulations!” He spread his arms out for a hug and I walked towards him cautiously. My head barely reached the top of his arm, but I wrapped my arms around his waist and he patted my hair. I heard murmurs of support and I felt another pair of arm wrap around the two of us. Then another. This continued on until the eight of us were wrapped up comically in a group huddle, laughing.
Finally, something had actually turned out alright.
There you have it! Sorry it was a short one, but I felt guilty about neglecting the story and just wanted to get something out. Please take the time to leave a review, they always mean so much to me.
Chapter 17: Animal
[Printer Friendly Version of This Chapter]
A/N: Happy Anniversary! Yep, it's officially been one year since this story began. I know, I can't believe it either. I want to say a quick thank you to those who have been here since the beginning, and to those of you who have joined in along the way. Love you guys xx
I feel the chemicals kickin' in
It's getting heavy
And I wanna run and hide
Neon Trees - Animal
"I don't know how I didn't notice before." Ruby's tone was thoughtful as she paced the floor of our dorm around me in a circle.
I fought the urge to squirm under her scrutinising stare. Her eyebrows were raised in contemplation as she studied me intently.
"I mean, I knew you were getting kind of chubby," Rubbing her chin, deep in thought, she spoke once again. "But I just figured you had been going a little heavy on the fried chicken."
Rose gasped. "Ruby."
I closed my eyes in embarrassment. After weeks of hiding myself under heavy layers and large robes while around my friends, they were all getting a good look at my newly swollen stomach. It still wasn't easily noticeable over my clothes if you didn't know what you were looking for, but bared to my friends in no more than a tank top, there was no denying it.
Alex sat up on her knees from her bed. "Well I think she looks gorgeous." This obviously ardent false display of reassurance didn't fool me, but I smiled happily back at her all the same.
Ruby scrunched up her nose. "I never said she didn't, you twit." She chucked a pillow at Alex and resumed her circling around me. "Look on the bright side." She said brightly. "Your tits are massive!"
Warmth flooded my face as I buried my face in my hands. The three girls laughed in amusement as I stalked off back to my bed and grabbed my large woolly cardigan. "Har har har," I mimicked sarcastically, shoving my arms through the knitted sleeves and wrapping the material around myself, concealing my body.
Ruby jumped onto my bed and lay back against my pillow. "Oh, relax. It's something to be proud of." She cupped her hand over her own chest and motioned vulgarly. "If you've got it, flaunt it."
Sure my cheeks were now permanently stained red, I pulled my hair out of its ponytail and brushed it down to cover my face. The other girls chortled in amusement while I lifted up the covers of my bed and slid in between the sheets. Ruby remained on top of my bed, but scooted to over to the side so we could both fit.
Alex and Ruby soon followed after, plonking themselves down on the end of my bed, Alex lying on her side with her hand supporting her head, and Rose sitting with her legs crossed underneath her.
Alex stretched an arm out to touch the material of the curtain that hung from one of the four posters of my bed. "What I don't understand is why you didn't just tell us all sooner," she said, running the fabric between her fingers.
I shifted uncomfortably. "I didn't even tell James for a long time," I explained, carefully adjusting the pillows behind my back.
"Why not?" Ruby looked at me from the side, and I shrugged casually. "I was kind of afraid."
She nodded in understanding. "I get it. At least I can learn from your mistakes now, and lead a life of celibacy," She could barely keep a straight face as she talked and soon enough burst into fits of laughter.
"Yeah, right." Alex said with a sarcastic eye roll.
I fought off a smile and lay my head back on the pillow. "Do you know how far along you are?" Alex asked with a curious expression.
I placed a hand over my concealed stomach and patted gently. "Yep. The Healer said I was almost sixteen weeks." A sudden light bulb seemed to light in my head. "Oh!" I jumped up out from under my covers and scurried around to my trunk at the foot of the bed.
"What are you doing?" Rose asked, laughing at my enthusiasm. I waved her off with my left hand as I tugged my satchel out from the mess of my belongings.
Wrapping it up in my arms, I retreated to the bed as Ruby lifted the covers for me to get back in. Placing the satchel on my knee, I began to rifle through it. "Here we are!" I exclaimed, extracting the envelope of small photographs.
Dumping my bag on the floor, I held the envelope between both hands. Looking up at my friends, I pulled out the first photograph in the pack. "Look."
All the girls squashed together to get a glimpse of the picture I was showing them. They all let out gasps of awe and sighs of delight when they realised what I was showing them wasn't really a photograph at all, but a sonogram.
I twisted around to get another look at the baby I had already memorised. The picture oscillated to show the baby moving around lazily. "Is it sucking its thumb?" Ruby asked in surprise, pointing at the sonogram.
"Yes," I noted proudly.
"That's so cute!" Alex squealed, sitting up on her knees to get a closer look at the vague outline.
I looked to Rose, who I saw had a hand placed over her heart and another covering her mouth as tears glimmered in her eyes. "Are you alright?" I asked in disbelief.
She nodded silently, the movement encouraging the tear to escape and roll down her cheek. "I'm fine," she sniffled, wiping her eye with her sleeve. "But I just realised that since James is the father, it means that I'm related to the baby, too."
Rolling my eyes, I shook my head. "You would have been anyway, you silly goose. You know you were already family to me." Rose hiccuped and reached forward to bundle me into a huge hug. I patted her back and she burrowed her face into my hair.
"Get off me, you old sap," I joked. Rose gave me a watery grin as she released her arms from around my body. "Can I keep it?" She asked quietly, pointing to the picture in my hand. Silently nodding, I passed it to her.
"I asked the Healer to make lots of copies. Even Ginny got a few." I explained, picking the envelope up from my lap. "James has one and so do I," I said, gesturing to the envelope. "These are all spares."
Alex leaned forward. "In that case, can I have one as well?" She examined her copy gladly once I handed it to her.
"One for me, too." Ruby reached for the pack. The three of us stared at her in shock. Ruby had always made it clear that she disliked all children, in any shape or form.
"What?!" She huffed, "The little bastard's cute, okay?"
She ignored my disapproving glare as she snatched the picture from my hand and tucked it into her pocket nonchalantly and began examining her nails.
"Are you and James going to go to Hogsmeade together tomorrow?" I glanced up to Rose's voice. I immediately fought off the knot of guilt in my stomach. "Of course," I forced a smile, "James thinks it would be the best time to... Announce our relationship. Publicly." I cringed inwardly when I thought of the performance we would have to put on. Things were awkward enough after telling our friends this evening, now we had to convince the whole school.
"I'm glad," Rose smiled, patting me on the shoulder. "I'm so happy there are no more secrets between us."
I scratched my nose and leaned back. "Yeah. Me too."
Trying to get to sleep that night was oddly difficult.
I spent the night tossing and turning, falling into fitful spurts of sleep before finally giving up at around five in the morning when I hauled myself out of bed.
It was difficult sleeping without James. There was no point trying to deny it. It had only been one night since I had shared the bed with him, but somehow I still expected to find his warm body next to me when I rolled over during the night.
Without him there, the bed felt strangely empty. I was missing the comforting feeling of curling up beside him and feeling his arm around me.
It’s thoughts like that that will get me in trouble. I have to think of James as a friend.
Just a friend.
When the time came for us to go to Hogsmeade, I was already exhausted. I avoided the mirror as much as possible, knowing I would find a pale hag with dark circles under her eyes staring back at me.
Once again, I had to borrow clothes from Alex. Her dark grey hoodie was perfectly large, gladly hiding my secret. I wore my own jeans, but i had to keep the top button open to allow room for me to breathe.
James and I had to do a awesome-ass job of convincing people we were deeply in love, because I don't think I have much time left before its entirely obvious I just haven't just been slacking on my exercise and everyone discovers what's truly going on under my baggy clothes.
"You ready?" Rose asked, tapping me on the shoulder and distracting me from daydreaming.
I took a deep breath. "Yep," I said, popping the P.
The two of us walked down to the common room. I spotted James almost instantly. He and Scorpius stood side by side, chatting quietly. Although no one had confirmed it out loud, the four of us were going on a double-date of sorts. I knew I would need Rose's support desperately to get through this trip, even if she didn't.
As soon as she spotted them, Rose immediately ran to Scorpius and tucked herself under his arm. He chuckled happily and pressed his lips to the top of her head. I was more hesitant, carefully making my way through scattered groups of students littering the common room slowly.
When I reached the three of them, I kept a few feet away from James, uncomfortably looking at the ground and fidgeting.
I felt his warm grip surround my hands, effectively stopping my twisting them together nervously. I looked up and saw he had a grin on his face. "Hello," he smiled softly.
Here come the butterflies.
"Hi," I breathed, returning his squeeze on my hand.
I looked down and watched his strong fingers wrap around my small, pale ones as he swung our joined hands back and forth.
Giggling, I looked back up and found myself closer to him then I remembered being before. His eyes were inches from mine and I was once again consumed by their colour. Not quite brown, not quite green.
"You ready to go?" He asked casually, releasing my hands and wrapping an arm around me.
My brain still not cooperating with my mouth, I nodded mutely.
The four of us began walking together to Hogsmeade. James oozed confidence, laughing amicably with Scorpius and Rose. I was less carefree, constantly surveying the crowd of students, who I saw had already started noticing James' grip on me.
By the time we reached the village, almost everyone was watching us, their eyes trained on our joined hands. I kept my eyes on the ground, watching my runner-clad feet step one in front of the other over the cobbled stones. I wondered briefly if I could just take off running, then and there, just break away from this huge mess and just keep running until I went somewhere no one knew me.
I kept walking at a steady pace, breathing evenly, trying to ignore the stares I could feel on me.
"You alright?" I heard James murmur. I kept my eyes low. "Everyone is staring at us," I said under my breath.
"Not everyone," he consoled me, "that group of second years over by Honeydukes aren't... Oh wait... never mind. They just looked."
I elbowed him in the ribs. "Not funny," I scolded, glaring at him and fighting off the urge to let go of his hand.
He rubbed the part of his stomach I had jabbed. "You have some sharp elbows there, Violet."
I scowled at him and he burst out into laughter. "Relax," he said, "Nobody really cares. They'll get bored soon enough."
"Great," I muttered sarcastically. At least I had something to look forward to.
"Three Broomsticks?" Rose asked, leading us towards the old pub after waiting for our positive response. I followed after her willingly, still entirely aware of the looks James and I were getting.
As soon as we stepped through the door, I was hit with the familiar warm smell of smoke and wood. The atmosphere was as friendly as ever, the soft murmur of conversation and clinking of glasses filling the room with their inviting sound.
I heard James chuckle from behind me. We shared a look and I knew we both had the same thought.
"Memories, huh?" He said, following after Rose to a booth to the side of the room. I pursed my lips in return and nodded, letting him lead me forward by the hand.
We all slid into the booth, Rose first, then Scorpius, followed bu James. I sat in after him, easily sliding on the worn leather in my soft tracksuit bottoms.
Almost immediately, James wrapped his arm around me. I could see the attention we were drawing, and I hated it. I ducked my head down to hide my face and escape momentarily from the inquisitive looks coming from the other Hogwarts students grouped around the pub.
I almost gasped in surprise when I felt James breath suddenly on the side of my neck as he softly ran his nose along my jaw in a seemingly sweet motion. But of course I knew better. "Act natural, Violet." He whispered, directly into my ear.
To an outsider, I'm sure like we looked like a loved-up couple murmuring sweet nothing into each others ears. The ever-present disappointment kicked up again when I remembered that this wasn't the case.
I nodded, taking in a deep breath. I pulled away from James, with a big smile on my face. "Would you like a drink, James?" I asked happily, playing the part of the adoring girlfriend. He smiled at my effort.
"I can get the drinks for us," he suggested, tenderly reaching forward to stroke my cheek. I was instantly reminded of the day of the scan, when James had brushed his thumb lightly over my tears in almost the exact same way. Except that time, it wasn't just for show.
James pushed a piece of my hair back as he spoke again. "What would you like, love?"
I was instantly struck dumb by the term of endearment. I almost physically swooned as the small word left his mouth.
Seriously, Violet? You are such a loser. You're rejoicing over one word. four letters! You are drooling over four meaningless letters!
My face fell as I realised just how correct the little voice inside my head was. That word was utterly meaningless to James. He was using it as part of the act. The show we were performing for an oblivious audience. It's not real.
It's not real.
"No- no. I'll get them." I said quickly, pulling away entirely from James' grasp and walking quickly away from the table.
It's not real.
I was already weaving my way through the other students before I realised I had never asked what drinks they wanted. Frustrated and adamant I wouldn't go back to the table and James' false displays of affection, I kept moving towards the counter.
It's not real. It's not real.
I found a clear spot at the wooden bar and leaned across the counter top, gesturing to Madam Rosmerta that I was there and ready to order whenever she was. I started tapping out a quick rhythm on the surface before me, distractedly staring up at the clock on the wall behind the bar. I remembered Ruby that night, proudly snatching it down and holding it up triumphantly.
It was hard to believe that that was only a matter of weeks ago. It seemed like a lifetime had passed since then. It was strange to think that it was not that long ago that my biggest concern was whether or not the boy I had a crush on liked me back and if I would be able to complete my History of Magic essay on time.
So much had changed since then. So many responsibilities faced up to, so many lies formulated. I knew what I was getting into when I agreed to pretend to date James... So why it was weighing so heavily on me now?
I guess I never realised how difficult it would be to hear him say such sweet things, to offer such gentle caresses, and to know they were all lies. He would never like me as I did him.
When I felt a warm hand touch my back I snapped my head back to see James had joined my side at the bar. "You forgot to ask what our orders were," he said with a grin. But underneath his joking exterior I could see he was truly concerned for me. As a good friend should be.
A good friend.
I shrugged, "sorry, I was thirsty." I forced a giggle for the people surrounding us, acting as though they weren't listening intently to our conversation. I saw one of the young members of James' fan club sidle up beside us, casually facing the opposite way, as if that would change the fact I could see she had a hand cupped to her ear to hear what we were saying.
James drew his arm around my waist and leaned forward on the counter with his other elbow. We stood in uncomfortable silence, waiting for Madam Rosmerta to come take our drink order. She came over soon enough and got to work on pulling three butterbeers and pouring a cold glass of water for me.
After paying, I began taking small sips of my water as James and I started walking back to our table, him levitating the three mugs of butterbeer in the air as he followed me.
Not paying enough attention to where I was going, I felt myself bang into a someone suddenly. I jumped back, holding my hand with the glass out in front of me. A bit of my water spilled over the rim of my glass and splashed onto the floor. I glanced up in surprise, an apology already on my lips, just as the someone spoke up.
"Avoiding alcohol, I see, Violet."
My stomach dropped when I heard the sound of my name spoken in a horrid nasally voice.
Thanks for reading, please review!
Chapter 18: Settle Down
[Printer Friendly Version of This Chapter]
A/N: No, your eyes are not deceiving you. Yes, this is an actual update! I know, it has been WAY too long. Life gets in the way sometimes. But here it is, the next chapter. I plan to begin updating more regularly again so hopefully we won't have this issue anymore. Once agin, I'm very sorry! Read on :)
And oh what a let down,
And I don't seem to be having any effect now
Falling all over the place.
Settle Down - The 1975
Not paying enough attention to where I was going, I felt myself bang into a someone suddenly. I jumped back, holding the hand with the glass out in front of me. A bit of my water spilled over the rim of my glass and splashed onto the floor. I glanced up in surprise, an apology already on my lips, just as the someone spoke up.
"Avoiding alcohol, I see, Violet."
My stomach dropped when I heard the sound of my name spoken in a horrid nasally voice.
I turned on the shower, the spray of water shocking me as it rushed out quickly. It beat down on the porcelain floor as I reached my hand out reluctantly, feeling the strikingly cold temperature of the water.
I left my hand under the stream until I felt it begin to warm, before grabbing the hem of my hoodie and tugging it over my head. I dumped the jumper onto the floor in a careless heap. I moved slowly, exhausted, my hands fumbling to undo the drawstring of my tracksuit bottoms. The small room was swirling with steam by the time I had stripped out of all my clothes. I took a step into the shower, the heat of the water unbelievably welcome as it washed over me, soothing my tired muscles.
So, it was official now. The secret was out. Everyone knew.
I felt like the iced water in my glass had been dumped over my head and drenched me from head to foot.
What was she doing here? Hadn’t she been expelled?
My eyes widened as I looked up at the girl before me. A tiny, ridiculous part of me, the non-Gryffindor part, was scared. Scared about what she might do. Of course the other side of me, the rational part, argued that we were in a crowded place. There was nothing she could do. But yet the look on her perfectly made-up face made it pretty obvious that she wasn’t here just to chat.
My heart thundered in my chest, my mind flashing back to an evening, not so long ago, when she had worn that exact same expression.
I felt a strong arm reach around my waist as James tugged me behind him. He stepped forward towards Chastity, a scowl on his face.
“What the fuck are you doing here?”
I jumped at the harsh growl of James’ voice. Never had I heard him speak so bluntly. And I had a faint feeling that if he ever spoke in that way to me, I would burst into tears.
Chastity obviously didn’t feel the same. She kicked out her hip, confidently resting her hand on her waist and pushing her chest out arrogantly and spoke proudly. “What? You’re not happy to see me?” She pouted her bottom lip. “And here I was thinking you’d want me here to help share the good news,” Her eyes fell down to my stomach pointedly.
A large breath escaped me in a gasp. No. She knew. How could she possibly know? I looked down at my stomach. This morning the bump had seemed so meagre, a small swell of flesh. Now, I felt like I had a quaffle shoved up my top.
My heartbeat picked up, my eyes shifting hurriedly around me. The people directly beside us weren’t really watching with much interest. The loud chatter still continued from the students outside our little bubble, entirely oblivious to what was happening a few mere metres from them.
“No, Chastity. Don’t even think about it.” James’s voice had not lost its frightening edge. He reached his right hand reaching back to grasp me, to make sure I was still there. I squeezed his hand in support, but it didn’t make him relax his protective stance in front of me.
Chastity flicked her long blonde hair over her shoulder and snorted. “Whatcha gonna do? Have McGonnagall expel me? OH, wait!” She threw her head back and laughed loudly, “you already did that!”
The crowd of students standing nearby looked over, curiosity etched on each of their faces.
James snarled, stepping forward. I pulled at his hand, urging him to not threaten her, but he didn’t budge. “You brought that on yourself,” He pointed a finger at her chest.
She slapped it away harshly. “It was a simple hex! I didn’t deserve to be expelled!”
“You were expelled because she was unconscious for days!”
Chastity’s face was slowly becoming darker. “That’s bullshit and you know it!”
I closed my eyes in embarrassment. I could feel dozens of eyes watching our stand-off intently, no doubt looking for gossip to spread around later. They were all vultures, every single one of them, only desperate to find out the next scandal. And they were about to get it.
Chastity went on, “The only reason it mattered was because she’s pregnant!”
Gasps echoed from around us before breaking into loud murmurs as the news was spread around to those who hadn’t heard. I could hear shouts of question and disbelief even from where I stood.
There was no misconception as to ‘she’ was either, as Chastity’s long, tanned, pink-nailed finger was pointed directly at me.
I didn’t even realise I was crying until I started snorting water up my nose.
I faced away from the shower spray, and sniffed harshly.
But the tears didn’t stop.
My body shuddered with sobs while the tears continued to flow. Everything was out in the open. Everybody knew I was pregnant, and it didn’t take a genius to figure out who the father was. Soon the gossip will have spread to all corners of the school.
I clutched one hand over my stomach and another over my mouth to hold in the gasps of air my lungs were trying to get to fuel my keening. I scrunched my eyes shut and slowly slid down to sit on the floor of the shower.
Everything I had been trying so hard to protect, the months I had spent covering the pregnancy up, it was all over now. I would now on be known as she school slut, not to mention Most Wanted Witch #1 in the eyes of every member of the female population of Hogwarts who wanted James to themselves.
I buried my face in my knees and cried. I was having a child. I can hardly protect myself, how am I meant to care for a whole other person? The tears mixed with the water from the shower as I kept crying. Even my mum couldn’t bear to look after me. She had always been somewhat cold, but I thought she would at least care enough to help me. Was that a glimpse into the future? Would I be a terrible mother too?
Rose’s voice was soft as she called out to me through the door. She tapped lightly on the dark wood. “You've been in there for a long time. Is everything alright?”
I snuffled pathetically against my knees, not having the energy to shout back to her. This all seemed very familiar. Not too long ago, Rose had stood outside this exact same bathroom and called out for me. It’s amazing how quickly these things can change.
She had been wonderful earlier, smuggling me out of the Three Broomsticks, beating her way through the crowd with me under her arm while Scorpius held back a muttering James. James kept repeating “never hit a girl, never hit a girl, never hit a girl,” over and over while Chastity looked at him as if he were insane. It would have been funny if it weren’t so tragic.
There was another light tap on the door. “Violet, please.”
I wrapped arms around my folded knees and stared blindly into space. I could still feel the tears running down my cheeks but I couldn’t find it in myself to wipe them away.
“Talk to me.”
I closed my eyes and lay my head down on the tops of my knees. The water was cooling down considerably but I didn’t want to get up.
“I’m going to come in.”
Everything was silent for a moment before she knocked again.
When I didn’t reply, I heard her sigh deeply. I could barely hear over the hum of the shower as she whispered alohamora.
I didn’t look up at the click of the door being opened or the sound of Rose taking a step into the room. The door closed softly behind her, and she took another step towards the shower.
She didn’t say anything, but I could hear her breathing as she reached in to turn off the freezing cold water coming from the shower head. My teeth chattered together as Rose grabbed my hands and gently pulled me up from the floor of the shower. My feet almost slipped on the wet ground, but Rose held on to me tightly.
It didn’t occur to me to be embarrassed of my nakedness while Rose grabbed a towel from one of the rails on the wall. She pulled it down and wrapped it around me securely, rubbing my arm quickly, trying to warm me up.
I sniffed away another tear and lowered my head to her shoulder. She rubbed my back soothingly as I cried quietly. I don’t know how long we stood there like that; her being the only thing keeping me standing.
Eventually, she led me from the bathroom and into our dorm. She deposited me on the bed and cast a quick drying spell on my hair. She brushed through it with a hairbrush, the muggle way, before she went to rummage around in her trunk.
She pulled out a pair of flannel pyjamas with bananas printed all over them, holding them up for me to see. I couldn’t help the small smile I cracked as she brought them over to me.
I stood up and Rose handed me the pair of pyjamas. I slipped the bottoms on quickly and shoved my arms through the sleeves of the top. I could only do up the first four buttons, but it was enough to cover me up, even if my belly did peek out a little bit.
Sweet Merlin, this had been a long day. And it was only the afternoon. I climbed into bed and was followed quickly after by Rose, who put one arm around me and held be tightly. I leaned against her shoulder and sniffed, wiping at my face. I felt like an idiot. A few months ago I would have been mortified to even let anyone see me crying, and now it seemed like the only thing I did was wail like a baby.
“I’m sick of feeling so weak all the time,” I whispered.
I could feel the soft rise and fall of Rose’s chest as she breathed in and out. She didn’t say anything, but rubbed my back slowly, soothing me like I was the baby. I closed my eyes and released all the air in my lungs in one loud whoosh. I didn’t feel strong, but I knew I had to be. For me. For James. For our baby.
When my eyes opened again, I was alone, curled up in a ball. The curtains around my bed had been pulled shut haphazardly around me, not fully closed, allowing a stream of dim light to seep through. Outside my bed, there were quiet whispers that became louder as I sat up in my bed and rubbed my eye. In my half-asleep state, I was blissfully unaware of the events of that afternoon. It didn’t take long for my memory to catch up with me.
“It’s not up for you to decide, Rose.” I knew James’ voice instantly.
I could hear faint snoring in the background. Judging by the silence of the room and the dimness of the light, it was safe to assume it was either extremely late or extremely early, depending on how you looked at it.
“She’s my best friend and I’m telling you now isn’t a good time.”
“Yeah, well, I’m her- her… boyfriend. I just need to see her, I don’t have to wake her up,” He sounded desperate, even in his whispering.
“You can see her in the morning, James. It’s late. She’s all ready been through enough today.”
I leaned forward to look out the gap in the drapes. I could see Rose standing to the side, her fiery hair pulled back in a messy bun. I could only see James from the back, his dark hair messy as he ran his hands through it.
“Please, Rose,” Not giving her time to turn him down again, I sat up on my knees and pulled back the curtains. They both turned to look at the sound, and as soon as James and I locked eyes, the relief on his face was obvious. I held back the curtain and indicated that it was alright for him to join me on the bed. I shrugged at Rose and and she tilted her head to the side.
“Okay. But not too late, do you understand?”
“Yes, Mum,” I said, rolling my eyes. James smiled at my poor attempt to lighten the mood with sarcasm as he climbed onto my bed. I tried to ease Rose’s worry with a forced smile. “Really, it’s alright.”
James nodded at his cousin as he pulled the curtain shut behind him. Quickly casting a muffliato charm, he sat down on the bed, crossing his legs beneath him. I chewed on my lip and looked down at my hands awkwardly. When I looked back up, we both stared at one another for a moment, neither one of us knowing quite what to say.
“So.” James began.
“So.” I repeated.
“I guess it’s all out in the open now then.” He noted, looking carefully into my eyes. I shrugged, pursing my lips. “I guess so.”
We fell back into an awkward silence. I racked my brain for something to say. Anything.
“How did Chastity know?”
James scratched his jaw. “Huh?”
I raised an eyebrow. I knew he had heard me.
“Chastity? Your psycho ex-girlfriend?” I said.
James snorted. “I know who she is.”
I rolled my eyes at him. “How did she know I was pregnant?” Subconsciously, my hand fell to my stomach. My fingers slid beneath the gaping fabric to the soft skin of my stomach, I rubbed them across my bulge lightly, thinking briefly about the small being inside, warm and nestled, completely oblivious to the drama it was creating.
James cleared his throat and looked to the side. “I told you before that after you had been hurt,” He still winced as he spoke, as if the word caused him physical pain, “that Rose and Lily had let it slip that you were pregnant. Well… Chastity was there to.”
“Oh,” I nodded. That seemed simple enough. I don’t know why I had the feeling that something big had happened after I had passed out. It all sounded very straightforward.
“So everyone knows?” I asked meekly, looking up at him from underneath my eyelashes.
He smiled sympathetically at me. “Yes, everyone knows. You and I are quite the school scandal at the moment.”
Butterflies erupted in my stomach at the thought of everyone discussing me. James, seeing my sudden anxiety, reached out for my hand.
“Hey, hey. It’s all good. This will all blow over soon enough. We just have to stick to the plan.”
He waved his other hand around in the air as he searched for his words. “You know, the couple thing. Show people that we’re in this together.” He squeezed my hand.
“Right. The plan.” I closed my eyes and shook my head, letting out a big breath. I was sick of moping over this. It was time to be positive.
“Well at least that’s one less secret to keep, right?” I I forced a grin onto my face. James matched my unwilling smile. “Yeah, I guess so.”
Finally giving into the drooping of my eyelids, I let go of his hand and climbed under my duvet. James, taking a hint, started to crawl off the bed to leave.
“Wait.” I said quickly. “You can stay the night, right? It’s late and… that’s what couples do, isn’t it?”
James gave me the first genuine smile I had seen in a while. He moved up to the top of the bed and slid under the covers with me.
“You’re right.” He lay down next to me and looked at me over the pillows. “That is what couples do”
A/N: So things are moving along, slowly but surely. With any luck the next chapter will be out soon! Thank you for sticking with this story, guys. Please leave a review! :)
Chapter 19: Kiss Me
[Printer Friendly Version of This Chapter]
Do you reckon it’s a boy or a girl?
Jessica told me that Bryan said that Charity said that Violet said it was a boy!
I heard it was twins.
Wait, I thought it was triplets?
The whispers around me got more and more distorted as I walked along, the next one even more embellished than the last. I don’t even think they were trying to keep their mutterings quiet anymore, they didn’t care if I heard. I had been hearing different versions of these accusations all morning, none of them even remotely close to the truth.
I kept my head down and kept walking down the cold corridor, avoiding looking at any of the people clustered together in groups. I could feel them all watching me as I went past, I could hear them all talking. I had set my mind to keep my eyes on the floor and ignore them, but all of a sudden, I didn’t feel like lying down and overlooking their idle gossip any longer. Just before rounding the corner, I stopped and turned back to look at my fellow students.
“Actually, guys, I’m having quintuplets, hadn’t you heard?” I shot all of their shocked faces a double thumbs up and walked on, holding my head high. Now that would give them something to talk about.
Suddenly, I felt a pressure on my right hand as someone grasped it. I looked upwards to see James’ smiling face. “Well, that sure was something.” He grinned, intertwining his fingers with mine.
I laughed nervously. “You saw that?” We continued walking along the corridor, heading for the moving staircases.
I looked at James out of the corner of my eye as he smirked at me. "It was kind of hard to miss," the smirk expanded into a full goofy grin that took over his entire face, his dimple sinking deeper into the flesh of his cheek. I pursed my lip playfully and nudged him with my elbow.
"You would do the same thing if you had to listen to all that crap all day." I rolled my eyes.
James shrugged his shoulders. "I've been getting it too," he stroked the inside of my palm with his thumb as we stepped onto one of the staircases. "But then again, mine have been more congratulatory that critical."
I huffed out a breath at the idea of him getting praised for something I was so heavily judged for. "Just because you're a guy, you get the high fives. But since I'm a girl, I get to be called a slut." I frowned and puffed out my bottom lip. "Double standards."
James clicked his tongue in annoyance and pulled me by the hand to stop me from continuing to climb the stairs. He walked down to one step below me so we were almost eye level.
"Violet Iphigenia Beale." My frown deepened at his use of my horrible middle name. "No matter what anyone is saying, no matter how horrible they are being, they don't know what they are talking about." He indicated between us. "What happened between us was nothing to be ashamed of. Sure, maybe we weren't the smartest about how we... did it." I blushed awkwardly, breaking eye contact and looking at the ground.
"But that does not mean we have to apologetic about the result." He rested his hand against my stomach. "And if anyone has anything of the contrary to say, they're idiots. They don't know what happened, and they don't need to know. Because we do." He leaned into me, tipping my chin upwards to look him in the eye. "And I wouldn't change a thing." His soft smile took my breath away. "Don't listen to what they say." He whispered, reaching up to run his thumb over the frown line in between my eyebrows.
I sighed. He was right, of course. The frivolous gossip being spread about me wasn't worth my time. Soon I wouldn't even be attending Hogwarts, and this would all just be a distant memory.
"You're right." I said. "but if you ever use my middle name again, I will not hesitate to punch you right in that pretty face of yours."
He chuckled and wrapped an arm around my shoulder and we continued up the stairs, which were now anchored to the landing. "Pretty, huh? Thanks." He puffed out his chest in mock arrogance. wiggling his eyebrows. I rolled my eyes once again, deciding to not to retort to his witty remarks.
"Hey." James said suddenly. "Where are we going?"
"I was just following you." I paused. "Shit, I'm supposed to be in Ancient Runes!" I added, wondering how I could have forgotten my intended destination.
"Why not just skip it?" James suggested, leading me back down the stairs. "Come for a walk with me."
"Don't you have a class now too?" I asked, pulling my hand back and raising an eyebrow.
He waved his hand dismissively. "Missing one divination class won't hurt." I snorted at his rationalisation of the many classes of divination I was sure he had missed.
"Come on," he smiled, grabbing my hand again. "You know, you're allowed to break the rules every once and a while."
I stuck out my chin defiantly. "I break the rules."
"Oh yeah?" James asked, "What rules have you broken, eating an After Eight at seven?"
I wrinkled my nose in frustration. I'd show him and his shitty attempt at reverse psychology. I can break the rules, and I can enjoy myself while doing it too.
"Okay then. Let's go."
Together, we strolled across the grass beside the Great Lake. The weather was surprisingly beautiful for a January afternoon, the sun shining down in that lovely way that makes everything warm and bright. There was a soft breeze blowing the grass lightly around our ankles and swaying the leaves on the trees. I smiled up at the sky, glad to see the weather was beginning to turn around. Maybe this was a sign that things in all aspects of my life would start to improve. I hoped so.
"Here?" James asked quickly, gesturing for us to sit on the ground underneath our feet. I nodded my consent, and James sat down on the warm grass, offering his hand to help me sit down between his legs. The butterflies kicked it up a gear, from faint fluttering to a full-fledged fiesta in my stomach. No matter how often he touched me, I couldn't ever imagine this feeling stopping.
I leaned back against his hard chest and breathed a deep sigh. The mix of the fresh air and James' distinct smell that was just him was perfection. I don't think I would mind skipping another class if it meant I could stay like this all day.
I could feel James take a deep breath in like he was about to say something, but he paused. I waited, pretending I didn't know. He breathed in once more, but stopped once again.
"Spit it out, Potter." I said jokingly. I twisted my head and looked up to see his face. He smiled, but it didn't quite reach his eyes. I frowned, pulling away from his chest and turning around on my bum so we were face to face. I scooted forward, kicking my legs behind him so we were closer.
"What's wrong?" I asked seriously, reaching my hands up to hold the front of his jumper.
He shook his head, looking downwards to avoid my eyes. He seemed... nervous?
"James? Look at me."
I smiled when his familiar hazel eyes met mine. "What's wrong?" I repeated.
He moved his jaw from side to side. "I was thinking." He said, lifting his hand to place over mine on his chest. "That maybe... since we're doing this whole 'couple' thing..." He paused, shaking his head.
"People are going to expect certain things. I- it just seems like... Oh, bollocks."
He looked down again, but I stayed quiet, letting him finish.
"I just think that since we'll be convincing people we are happy couple in love, that we should be, y'know... doing things couples do and whatnot."
I looked at him questioningly. "I'm not sure I know what you mean." I stated worriedly. What exactly was he asking me here?
He met my gaze. "In order to make this believable, we'll probably have to... kiss." He said. "In front of people." He watched me, awaiting my response.
Of course I had considered this (and imagined it over and over in my head, so sue me) and I knew it would probably have to happen. I mean, I was happy (ecstatic) to get the opportunity to kiss James, but I didn't want to introduce the topic for fear he wouldn't want the same.
James spoke up again, "So maybe we should... practice."
My heart thumped faster at the suggestion.
"Just so things aren't awkward when we have to do it in front of people. Only if you want to though, and purely for practice purposes. Just for the sake of preparation." He rushed to explain himself. "Feel free to say no, honestly, I won't mind."
"Well," I said slowly, "preparation is key."
James nodded, his eyes falling down to my lips. I quickly peeked my tongue out and licked my bottom lip, and his eyes returned to mine in a flash.
I could see the hunger growing in his eyes, an expression I am sure was reflected in my own.
"Practice makes perfect and all that." I breathed, scooted myself closer to James, running my right hand up his chest to his neck. I was close enough to him to see the freckles splattered across his cheeks and his jealousy-inducing long eyelashes. I lightly ran my index finger along his jaw as I breathed him in.
The corner of his mouth turned up as he brushed a loose strand of hair behind my ear. He leaned in slowly, too slowly. He brushed his thumb along my jaw and used his soft grip to lead my mouth up to his. I took a final deep breath.
And then, our lips finally touched.
The electricity exploded the same as it had before, if not, then even stronger. His lips were impossibly soft as they moved with mine, slowly at first, his hand moving softly to hold the back of my neck. I was surprised to find our compatibility in this area had not changed. Our lips fit perfectly together as they moved in synchronisation, brushing off one another lightly.
I had a desperate need for more. This wasn't enough. I needed to taste him. I opened my mouth slightly, and he reciprocated immediately. I gasped at the feeling that came with the taste of his breath. His hand slid down to hold the back of my waist, and he roughly pulled me closer to him. I wrapped my arms around his neck just as he hesitantly slid his tongue to touch my bottom lip. I met him instantly, smiling as our tongues lightly traced one another.
I ran my fingers through the hair and the nape of his neck and tugged on it gently. He groaned, tightening his grip on my waist. I let out a whimper when he captured my bottom lip between his and sucked on it. Our lips moved with more urgency now, moving against each other feverishly.
I never wanted this to stop.
But... it had to.
There was no use in kidding myself.
All of this was for show, and the more distanced I made myself, the less it would hurt later.
I moved my hands to lay flat against his chest and opened my eyes as I pulled away. James leaned forward after me, his eyes closed, searching for my lips. When he didn't find them, his eyes opened. He blinked deliberately, looking down at me through heavy lids. He blinked again. "Oh." He cleared his throat. "Right."
I placed a closed-mouth forced smile on my face and moved away from him and turned back around.
"Like riding a broom." He joked, "You never forget."
I forced a laugh as I lay back against his chest.
Things were about to get very complicated.
Ah! They kissed! Finally, am I right?
Thanks again to everyone who reviewed the last chapter. I'm still trying to get back into the swing of things, but hopefully this chapter will tide you guys over until the next one.
Thanks for reading, and don't forget to review!