I looked towards the door and saw my best maid of honor friend, Lily Evans, standing in the doorway.
“No,” I replied back, pouting slightly with my voice threatening to enter whining mode, “I look terrible!”
“You haven’t even put on your dress yet?! The ceremony starts in less than an hour!”
“It’s too confusing!” I said on the verge of a complete meltdown, “The straps won’t stay on my shoulders!”
Lily rolled her enviable green eyes at me, “That’s because they’re supposed to be off shoulder, dear.”
I stared at her with a dumbfounded look on my face before sinking to the floor and wrapping my arms around my legs, “It’s a sign Lily! It has to be!”
“Or you could just be completely hopeless when it comes to dresses.”
I had to admit, she had a point. When it came to dresses I knew next to nothing, which is exactly why I never wore them! “I have a very good reason for not wearing dresses!”
“Oh really,” she said in mock surprise, “I’d love to hear it!”
I eyed her desperately, “You know, despite what James thinks, you are a very cruel person!” She grinned.
“Just get up so we can get you ready!” I was very tempted to just stay on the floor and challenge her by saying “make me”, but I decided against it. Today was too important, and since it was almost time for the ceremony, I figured that now wasn’t the best time to be stubborn.
“Have you seen him yet?”
Lily smiled, “Yes I have.”
“How is he faring?” I said rather impatiently. This girl just loved to torment me!
“He’s getting by. I think when I last saw him, he was all wet and saying something about having deer at the reception.” She saw my horrified face and quickly added, “He wasn’t wearing his tux! I think he was just about to start getting ready when the whole ‘wet’ fiasco started!”
I sighed, “Good.” Looking in the mirror, I didn’t know what to think. I honestly never thought this day would get here this soon! I would always tell myself, ‘Oh we have a month left! There’s still time!!’ I chuckled dryly. It seemed to have gone from ‘There’s a month left!’ to ‘It’s tomorrow!?!’ overnight.
“Don’t worry! You look beautiful!”
“Ha! Easy for you to say! All you have to do is stand there!”
“That’s all you have to do too Laverna.”
“That may be, but it’s a lot scarier when you’re the one getting married!”
She gave a frustrated growl and turned me to face her; her green eyes boring into mine, “Laverna. Everything is going to be fine!”
“But what if I tri—“
“No buts! Today is all about you and him! No one else here matters except for the two of you! Okay?”
I hesitated and when it looked like she was about to start talking again, I quickly agreed.
She nodded her head in satisfaction, “Good! I’ll wait outside and come get you when we’re ready.”
I nodded, “Thanks.”
As the door shut, I turned back to examine myself in the mirror closer. My long dark hair was up with a few loose strands that fell down and tickled my exposed shoulders, and my face was all painted up with the yucky makeup that made me look slightly clownish in my opinion.
While I continued trying to find odd deformities in my appearance, my thoughts slowly traveled back in time—reflecting over all the memories that I had made since meeting the infamous Marauders almost a year ago. I could still remember, very clearly, the first time I encountered them.
The sky was beginning to turn a deep red as I walked out of my little cottage and headed into the forest. The branches of the thick twisted trees reaching out and clawing at my shirt as I made my way to a little spot that I had discovered a few weeks back and claimed for myself. Tonight was the night. Tonight was the night that I’d finally venture deeper into the Forest. Ever since I had moved out here about a month ago, I had been getting some weird vibes from it.
After I moved in, I realized that this was no ordinary place. I remember a year ago I had had enough trouble accepting the fact that werewolves even existed, let alone that I was one, and now I had found out that there were other… mythical beings that inhabited the world. Needless to say I was pretty darn excited!
As for the whole werewolf thing, I guess I could be considered a hereditary werewolf. My father was one and he was the person that taught me all about this. He would always tell me stories about witches and wizards and magical mumbo-jumbo stuff like that for bedtime stories when I was younger. As I grew, I wrote them off as the overactive imagination of a man getting along in his years, but then I began to feel these awkward sensations. Sadly, my mother wasn’t around to help me with this. She had died more than a year earlier due to a miscarriage. I was heartbroken at the time and my father said that it was these feelings of loneliness that sparked my conversion from normal teenage person girl to that crazy werewolf chick. It wasn’t so bad with my father’s guidance. I actually grew to quite like the feeling of being a wolf and soon, on my seventeenth birthday to be exact, he deemed me ready to move out on my own. I protested of course, but he insisted that I needed to get out and learn how to survive in the world. Even though he said these things, I knew that deep down he wanted me to stay. He wasn’t the same after my mother died, like he was lost and didn’t know where he was or how he got there. However, I knew that it was pointless to argue. It was, and still is, almost impossible to change his mind once it was made up. Stubborn as an ox he was. His pushing was the main reason why I moved out here in the first place.
For the past month, I had been staking out the boundaries of my territory. It was easy considering the fact that I was the only person that lived this close to the forest. I would go out every day, circumference the area that was already mine, and expand it where ever I could the more I explored. By this point, I knew my territory like the back of my hand and now that the full moon would be upon me in mere moments, I was free to venture beyond my claimed territory somewhat safely.
Looking up, I saw that the sky, at least what I could see of it, had turned purplish. That was my cue. I began stripping til I was completely naked, balled up my clothes and tossed them on the ground. Hopefully they’ll still be in one piece when I got back. I stood there clutching my arms and trying not to shake as the chilly autumn wind that was blowing through the trees gave me goose bumps. Patience is not a virtue of mine and it was really showing as I began to pace and growl a bit at the sky, willing the light of the moon to hit me and give me freedom.
When it finally did, my skin tingled and crawled as the hairs on my arms grew thicker and longer. A great pain twisted and wrenched at my insides and I doubled over, trying very hard not to scream out in agony. I opened my eyes and saw my hands shrinking in a grotesque manner until they finally resembled large black paws. The pain that had seized me before was gone, leaving me numb and exhausted on the forest floor.
‘Well, at least the worst part’s over now,’ I thought. Regardless of the agonizing transformation, full moon nights are my favorite time of the month. I love the sensations that I feel as a wolf and, at that time, felt that nothing in the world could compare to them.
After I had taken a few minutes to compose myself, I pushed up and began to sniff around. The various scents that bombarded my nose were unbelievably exhilarating. Each one different from the next, yet blending together in a wonderfully delicious medley that caused my mouth to water. As I picked my way through each individual scent, I came across one in particular that made me freeze.
‘Werewolf?’ I thought. My heart began to race and my excitement escalated. There was another werewolf nearby! Latching onto the scent of the other wolf, I dashed forward. While tracking it down, however, I caught three other very bizarre scents. It smelled as if there were humans and animals with the werewolf. That doesn’t sound too bizarre when put in those words. I should say that it seemed as if each animal scent had an underlying human scent. I guess you could call it a two for one scent.
Seeing the wolf in the distance, I began to slow down. It – or I should say he judging from the scent – was with what looked like two other creatures: a large black dog and a powerful stag. However, my nose told me that there was another creature with them, a rat, to be exact. This was the strangest thing that I had ever seen!
I whined and shook my head in confusion. These actions, however, were not exactly the smartest thing for me to do. For you see, by doing these two simple gestures, I had alerted the wolf and the dog to my presence. The dog turned towards his… ‘friends’ and made a soft noise in the back of his throat, telling them that he would check things out. As the dog advanced on my hiding place in the shadows, my heart stopped. What was I still doing here? It was the wolf that I was interested in meeting, not this freakishly oversized mutt!
I was about to retreat and find a roundabout path to the wolf, when the dog stumbled upon my hideout. Pausing for only a second, I turned sharply towards him and registered shock in his eyes when I instinctively began to growl and slowly advance on him.
The dog backed up, seeming a bit confused at first, then, as if finally registering what he was looking at, he stopped his withdrawal, stood his ground, and began growling back at me. The minute that he did, the sound of thundering hooves reached my ears and the stag appeared next to the dog, his sharp antlers pointed at my chest.
The dog stopped his stream of growls and a smug expression took over his face. I wanted very much to attack him at that moment, but the stag’s antlers kept me at bay and kept me growling. Looking between the two of them, I weighed my options. Option 1: I could charge blindly forward and be killed by something that could possibly be my dinner in the future, or option 2: I could run away with my tail between my legs and never get a chance to meet the other werewolf, but I would at least still be alive. Making my decision, I was about to execute option 2, when finally, the wolf joined his friends. I instantly felt slightly at ease. This was someone who knew what it was like to be a werewolf! Someone who understood the pain, the thrill!
My tongue lolled out of my mouth in a happy pant as I saw the wolf and attempted to approach him. I don’t remember exactly what happened in that moment, but I do know that one second I was happily trying to connect with a fellow werewolf, and the next, I was on the ground, my front drenched in my own thick, crimson blood. Its delicious aroma filled my nostrils and as more blood poured out, I could feel my consciousness slowly and insufferably slipping away. Lifting my head, I saw that the stag was holding the wolf back with his antlers. The wolf, who had seemed calm and innocent enough when I first saw him, was now snarling viciously, scratching at the stag that was restraining him and preventing him from reaching his goal, which seemed to be my throat. His eyes were bloodshot and radiated with his hunger and bloodlust.
I couldn’t seem to tear my eyes from him. Was this how I looked when I lost control? Shuddering at the thought, I closed my eyes and dropped my head to the ground, whimpering at the pain that that action caused. My breathing was beginning to labour and the throbbing in my chest was bittersweet. As the stag drove the rabid wolf farther and farther away from me, something warm and wet pressed against my chest, the pain making me dizzy. I began whimpering even louder than I already was and turned towards the cause of my pain. My eyes landed on the dog that I was growling at earlier. His head was bent low and he was licking at my wounds.
I didn’t know what to think. This dog, who had given me the impression of being very hostile and arrogant, was suddenly trying to help me? Obviously I highly doubted his seemingly pure intentions, because a soft warning growl bubbled up from deep down and escaped me. The dog turned his head sharply in my direction. I tried lifting myself up in an attempt to appear more intimidating, but the dog would have none of it. He placed his paw on my head and pushed me firmly to the ground before returning to my bleeding chest.
I sent a ferocious glare in his direction—which he ignored naturally—and grudgingly let him finish working on me.
A sudden, thunderous banging at the door shook me out of my reminiscence. Growling slightly at being momentarily robbed of my happy memories, I called out annoyed, “Who is it?”
When no one answered, I listened closely to hear Lily arguing with someone.
“But, you’re not supposed to see her until she walks down the aisle!” Lily whined.
“Says who?” argued the other person, who just happened to be my best man.
“Everyone! It’s bad luck if you do!”
“Why is it bad luck?”
“It just is!” Lily’s frustration was probably showing evidently now.
“I think I’ll take my chances. Laverna?”
“Yeah?” I replied. I couldn’t help smiling abit at the all the trouble that Lily was going through to make this day right.
“You don’t mind if I come in do you?”
I thought about it. Really, I did! For about two seconds… then I replied, “Not at all!” I heard Lily’s exasperated sigh and the chuckle of the man outside the door. Honestly, the main reason I said yes was to hear her reaction. It was so worth it!
Before the door was even halfway open, Lily’s irritated voice once again carried through and reached my ears.
“Fine! Just throw away all the traditions! You both had better be ready when I come to get you!” And with that said, she stormed down the hall, biting the head off of anyone who crossed her.
Sirius Black, my husband-to-be, walked in laughing and said, “You know, maybe we shouldn’t be so hard on her.”
Smiling, I replied, “You’re right, but it’s so much fun!”
Sirius Black. I don’t even know where to begin to describe him. He has these incredible steel gray eyes that just seem to stare directly into my soul, a non-burly frame that, despite its looks, has this mysterious strength which makes me feel as if nothing could go wrong, and this very affectionate behavior that… well you get the picture. To sum it all up, and at the risk of sounding cliché, he was perfect!
Usually one the more talkative ones in the group, for once it seemed as if Sirius couldn’t find anything to say which, of course, made me feel extremely good about myself. I had to admit though; the man could wear a tux!
I would have liked to say that his mind went blank just looking at me, but that wasn’t the case. He made his way towards me, eyes never leaving mine.
“You look unbelievable Darlin’,” he said as his arms snaked their way around my waist.
“Psh. Sure. You’re just saying that because of… well today!”
Shaking his head, he retaliated, “Nuh uh! I mean everything I ever say! To you at least.”
I looked at him skeptically, “Really.”
“Of course!” he said. “At least now I do! I wasn’t really sure if I could trust you when we first met.”
Backing out of his comfortably warm hold on me, I pulled a face of mock offense, “Why not?!”
A grin started to play at the corners of his mouth as he answered, “Hmm, let’s see, other than your hostile attitude and petty attempt at intimidation?”
Not finding any way around these accusations, I decided a little tweaking was in order, “My hostile attitude? If I recall, it was you who started the whole ‘hostile attitude’ thing!”
“I started it?” An incredulous look crossed his face, “That’s bu—”
“Hey Padfoot!” A small whispering voice said. “Padfoot!”
Sirius, in frustration, sighed and rolled his eyes. “What do you want Prongs?!” he said somewhat irritated.
“Lily’s on her way! What should I do?” Both Sirius and I caught the joyful eagerness in his voice. Like a child on Christmas morning. Except this child was eighteen years old and had way too much time on his hands.
With a nod from me, Sirius did the equivalent of giving candy to a baby, “Stall her! Do anything you need to!”
“Aye, aye Captain!” And with that he was gone, off to torment my own personal wedding day tormentor.
“So then,” I said, drawing his attention back to me, “What was it you wanted to ‘talk’ about?”
Confusion passed over his face, “Talk? I just came here to see how you were holding up.”
“Really?” And here I was thinking he had some ulterior motive.
“Well yeah. James kept telling me that you were doing fine, but he becomes a compulsive liar whenever I ask him something. He doesn’t deny it either! So in my search for the truth, I figured, ‘Hey, why not go to the source!’ So here I am!” He gazed at me very seriously with a fierce intensity to his eyes, “Are you doing alright?”
My heart fluttered in my chest with sporadic three-sixties as I stared back into his beautifully captivating eyes. “Honestly, I don’t know. Everything seems to be happening so fast.”
“I know what you mean,” he replied as he sat on the little couch, pulling me down with him, his sweaty hands covering my trembling ones. I could feel his pulse pounding and knew that he was just as scared, maybe even more so than I was. Wait—scratch that—I was definitely more scared than he was. After all, this was going to be my first and last time getting married!
“Anyways,” Sirius continued, “I came in here to tell you what I was going to—”
“NO! Stop it James!! It’s about to start! I need to get her ready!!” Lily’s voice shrieked dangerously close to the door.
Sirius growled again in frustration, “Again?!”
I could see that this wasn’t just some fun little talk that he wanted to have, and I greatly wanted to hear him out before we went through with what could possibly be the most important day in our young, adult-ish lives, but I also knew that Lily’s little shrieks, no matter how annoying at this moment, were right. We both needed some time to mentally prepare and I tend to find it very hard to prepare anything mentally with the most stunning being in the world sitting next to me.
Sirius heaved a sigh, “I guess it’s time for me to go Darlin’”
“Fine.” I must admit, I was pretty irritated with Lily at the moment. I wanted to hear what he had to say! “We’ll talk later then?”
He smiled at me, and then moved forward, his hand moving to the back of my neck as he lowered his lips to my forehead, “We won’t have to. Also, don’t worry. We’ll have more than enough time to get back at her after this is done.”
I smiled back at him and whispered, “Can’t wait!”
It was then, annoyingly enough, that a very disgruntled Lily Evans burst through the door, breathing heavily. James, who was—not surprisingly—on the floor, grinned up at us and shrugged saying, “Sorry mate. I tried!”
“YOU!” Lily said in a dangerous voice somewhat madly while pointing a shaky finger at Sirius, “Out!”
As he walked towards the door, he rolled his eyes in my direction. This, of course, caused Lily to physically throw him from the room and slam the door before turning on me. I didn’t particularly have a death wish that day so I let her do all her little fussing and getting ready stuff. To my own surprise, I didn’t turn out half bad. Sure there were a few things that I would have gotten rid of altogether, such as the makeup, but overall, it was pretty good.
“Ok,” Lily finally declared, “You are ready.”
I didn’t say anything. I couldn’t say anything. The little organ in my chest was pounding away, faster and faster, and my mouth seemed to dry up as a lump formed in my throat. This was it.
“Laverna?” Lily’s worried voice broke through my thoughts as she gently reminded me, “It’s time.”
I opened my mouth to say something, but nothing seemed to come out other than air, so I just resorted to nodding and having her drag me out the door to get me into position, all the while murmuring little instructions to me. Don’t look down. Keep your eyes on him. Don’t trip. Smile.
“And don’t forget, you walk after the kids, but only when your music starts!”
I nodded and managed a weak, “Got it.” I found myself staring into space and took solace in the blankness of my mind, but then my view was obstructed by a curly red headed monster and I was hurtled back to reality.
Lily threw her arms around me and whispered in my ear, “You’ll be fine!”
“I hope you’re right!” As I said these words, the music started up.
Turning to me, Lily said, “That’s our cue!”
For some reason, when Lily exclaimed this with her enthusiastic tone, my heart seemed to stop mid-beat, and before I knew it, it was my turn to walk. The music changed and I stared at all the intricate little decorations courtesy of a Ms. Evans and my father, Mr. Lamont. I continued to look around and saw one delectable little decoration that I couldn’t tear my eyes away from even if I wanted to. And its name was Sirius Black.
He beamed at me as I walked towards him, trying really hard not to run or walk too fast. It felt like the longest walk of my entire life. I could have sworn that it wasn’t this long during rehearsals! There must have been some kind of magic on it or something!
While these thoughts of conspiracy to make the bride mad raced through my head, Sirius’s hand appeared out of nowhere. I looked at him dumbly for a split second before grasping his hand and letting him pull me up beside him. His warm hand covered mine and he smiled down at me. My mind spun with happiness.
I could see the Pastor’s mouth moving in words that my mind refused to process. All I was aware of was Sirius. I felt his fingers entwine with my own and squeeze my hand, moving slowly and massaging my fingers between his own.
I figured that the main important parts of the ceremony were the vows and the exchanging of rings so I let myself drift off and focus on the soothing stroke of Sirius’s hand on mine. I was almost completely out of it until Sirius pulled me back by turning me to face him. I looked at him confused and seeing my blank expression, he mouthed, ‘Vows,’ to me.
“Oh!” I whispered handing the bouquet behind me to Lily. I grasped his other hand and switched to attention paying mode, ready to repeat whatever the pastor said and finally be married to Sirius! A wide smile plastered itself on my face. That is until…
“Before we continue on with the traditional vows,” the pastor began, “Mister Black would like to say a few words.”
Where did this come from?! I knew nothing of this! Was this what he wanted to talk about earlier? It had to have been! I opened my mouth to say… something to him… but he beat me to the punch. He would pay for this later! I looked to Lily for some support, but all I saw was her happy/evil little grin on display. She knew about this all along! I knew she was evil! She’d pay for this too!!
I would have continued with my mental ramblings, but Sirius had already begun talking. This had better be good!
He began by staring into my eyes. It kind of annoyed me how he knew exactly what would stop any of my mental tantrums and actually make me listen.
“Laverna,” he started, “I would love to mention all the fun moments that we shared, but that would take way too long, so I’ll just focus on one: The night that we met.”
My heart almost stopped. He couldn’t talk about that! There were non-magical, muggle type people from my family here that knew nothing about what my father and I were! I was about to protest, but a look from him that said, ‘Let me finish first then you can kill me later!’ silenced me.
“It seemed that the moment we saw each other we were hostile. Naturally, you were the one that started the hostility, not me, but I’ll admit I was quick to follow.” I noted some scattered laughter and I smirked as he continued. “I remember my first impression of you was that you were small, wild, and violent.” He paused for a split second, “What happened after, however, changed that opinion.” I felt Sirius squeeze my hand even tighter than he already was, all signs of joking disappeared from his face. In its stead, there was an intense, but loving expression that had my heart racing and skipping like crazy. “When I saw you there, yes you still looked small, but there was something else. You were exposed and helpless and though I had other primary concerns, I just couldn’t seem to turn away and leave you.” A small, warm smile crept onto his serious face. “So much has happened since then and still, I can’t leave you. So today, I willingly give myself to you. And no matter how hostile things may get, know this, I love you Laverna. These three words have my life in them.”
Sighs and soft squeals from the women filled the room, but I hardly noticed. The only thing that mattered to me at that moment was Sirius. The joyful, mischievous spark had returned to his eyes, but there was that extra touch that just took my breath away and made my heart want to burst with glee.
I continuously kept running through his last few words in my head. ‘I love you, Laverna. These three words have my life in them.’ The most beautiful words I have ever heard uttered to me by the most incredible man ever. Nothing in the world could compare to how I felt at that moment.
He knew it too. I saw a hint of that smug expression of superiority that he gave me that first night that just seemed to scream, ‘Yeah, I know I’m good!’ when he repeated what the pastor said.
‘Cocky bum,’ I thought, a happy little smirk played with my mouth as I began repeating my vows. Finally, after all the screams, tormenting, and pulling out of Lily’s hair, everything that we had planned and worked on in the past couple of months was coming to a close. My heart swelled with elation, my hand slid through Sirius’s and into the beautifully simple ring that lay hidden there, and soon the Pastor said the words that I had been looking forward to all day long.
“I now pronounce Sirius and Laverna to be husband and wife, in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Sirius, you may now kiss the bride.”
I felt Sirius’s hand snake its way behind my neck and pull me forward as he lowered his head, his eyes closing, probably hoping for a nice little romantic fairy tale kiss. But that wasn’t our style now was it. Feeling very happy and spontaneous, I raised my head and crushed my lips to his, enjoying the sight of his eyes as they widened in shock. I smiled against his lips, savoring the scrumptious taste. His lips curled upwards, moving slowly and sensually as he pulled me deeper into the kiss. My mind spun with pleasure and I fought hard not to make any… inappropriate sounds. It wasn’t until Lily’s barely audible clearing of the throat sounded that we broke apart.
His hands found mine once again and his fingers intertwined with my own before starting their little massaging motion. I bit my lower lip to keep from squealing with joy, and Sirius, seeing my little squeal stopping efforts, chuckled.
The Pastor, now with a small smile on his face, placed his hands on our shoulders and turned us to face the crowd with a surprising strength. “It is now my privilege,” he began, “to introduce to you for the first time, Mr. and Mrs. Sirius Black.” Cheering erupted from the audience as we walked back down the aisle, pausing for the occasional picture, his hand still entwined with mine.
After we had made it to nearest room, which just so happened to be mine, I felt Sirius’s arms surround me from behind as his lips worked their own magic on the nape of my neck. I would have stayed to see where he was going to go with this, but I was feeling particularly playful at the moment. So I moved out of his reach, enjoying the bewildered look on his face.
“What?” He said completely confused as to why I wasn’t going along with him.
“You still need to pay for surprising me with that little speech earlier!” I said smirking at him.
“Oh really,” he said as he stood and stepped in front of me.
“Yup! And just so you know, I didn’t appreciate that ‘small’ comment either.” His arms once again encircled me but this time I didn’t move.
“And just so you know, I meant everything I said up there.” His smiling eyes met mine.
“I know,” I whispered with a smile, my heart once again skipping in delight as he brought me nearer and laid an even more mind blowing kiss on me than the one we shared at the altar. Regardless of all the tormentors and surprises that stressed and freaked me out today, this single moment, with Sirius’s beautiful words racing through my head, made up for everything.