I do not own Harry Potter. I also do not own Doctor Who.
The aftermath of the Quidditch World Cup and a return to London.
I’m noticing a pattern with the summer chapters. There is always a large portion somewhere that focuses on Selene. I suppose it gives more insight to her as a character, since the school years focus on Harry. Soon, it won’t just be her since in the near future, we’ll be learning more about a few other vampires like Constantine and Vladimir. Also, I couldn’t resist making the Doctor Who
references at the end.
If you’re ever bored for something fun to listen to, I suggest the HPFF Podcast! It’s always a great listen, the StaffChats are hilarious and the stories that you love to read are beyond amazing when put to words.
Also, I still offer to contact you when I update or have story related news. If you request this, or even leave questions you’d like answered directly, please be sure to leave contact information. Also, you can ask questions on my Meet The Author page on the forums. My user name there is also, Selene
Warnings: Swearing, Kitchen Abuse, Sensitive Issue/Topic/Theme
“Is this day over yet?!”
Harry peaked into the sun room of their home where Selene was sprawled on the wicker sofa, an ice pack held against the right side of her face and the portable muggle telephone in her hand. Each of them had left the camp at dawn, to avoid the already long queue for portkeys home. The three of them had left the Weasley family and Hermione at the Burrow with a hysterical Molly and headed home themselves only to arrive in a miniature chaos themselves. The house-elves were in a minor panic and both the telephone and Floo network had been going off nonstop for hours.
With a growl, Selene put the small phone down onto the coffee table and threw the icepack across the room and into the wall with a splat. As she tilted her head back, Harry caught a glance at the bruise still marring her face before it was hidden by a hand as she pinched the bridge of her nose, a habit of irritation.
“Whose idea was it to install a Muggle telephone line?” She asked in irritation.
Harry stepped into the room and sat in a chair across from her. “Yours.”
“Hn…next time, don’t let me get my way,” Selene instructed as the phone started to ring in its shrill pitch, the sound echoing in their ears.
Selene picked it up and was arguing with some unfortunate vampire on the other end. “Hello? No, he isn’t here,” Selene snapped before hanging up. She slammed the phone back down. “That woman has called three times in the past twenty minutes.”
“What does she want?” Harry asked, eyeing the phone as he wondered if it would survive till lunch.
“An interview with-” the phone cut her off. “Hello? No! I don’t care-” Selene sat up on the sofa, her pillow flopping to the ground, “do not interrupt me,” she snarled. “I don’t care if you offer the Crown Jewels as payment for five minutes with him. There will be no interview!”
Harry’s lips twitched in a small smirk as he watched Selene flop onto her back, murmuring swear words to the Muggle device. “Didn’t anyone ever tell you that patience is a virtue?”
Selene snorted. “It seems I prefer sins over virt-” the phone rang for the third time since Harry entered the room. Selene sat up so quickly, that Harry wouldn’t have been surprised if she hurt herself in the process. “Oh, piss off will you!” A small tick started in Selene’s left eye as Harry caught the sound of a female yelling at Selene. “No, but…yes, I…well…yes ma’am, I…hello? Hello?”
Selene stared at the phone for a moment, her mouth hanging open ever so slightly in surprise; the woman on the other end had hung up on her. Harry was trying hard not to laugh over it. “Who was that?” He managed to ask.
Selene looked up at him, the bruise shining dark upon her cheek, and back down at the phone, before flinging it onto the cushions and leaping up, racing towards the door. The next series of events were a slight blur. As Selene slid through the doorway, dear Rebecca Potter could be heard shouting from the kitchen, her voice growing louder by the second. As Selene reached the stairwell, Rebecca was seen coming down the short corridor that led to the kitchen; by the time Selene was at the top of the stairs, Rebecca was behind her, her long and elaborate skirts held with one hand to keep from tripping while the other had a firm grasp on Selene’s left ear.
“Mon Dieu, Rebecca, qui fait mal
!” Selene gasped in French, twisting as Rebecca pulled her down the steps.
“Enfant impudent! Votre mère, bénissez-la et je vous ai élevés avec les manières
!” Rebecca hissed, her eyes narrowed in an all too familiar cross way. “Le fait de parler à vos anciens d'une telle façon. Je devrais vous donner une raclée solide pour votre conduite, Selene.
” Rebecca tugged Selene towards the corridor to the kitchen, scolding her in French the entire way. She passed by Sirius with a curt nod.
!” Selene squeaked as she tried to grab Sirius in a desperate attempt to escape from Rebecca’s merciless clutches. Sirius gave her an apologetic look, however amused, as Rebecca succeeded to drag her into the kitchen corridor.
The two males stood silent until the booming echo of the kitchen door being slammed shut echoed throughout the house; Harry was quick to start laughing after that.
“I’ve been on the receiving end of her death grip to many times,” Harry chortled, sitting down on the carpeted steps. “What were they saying?”
Sirius shook his head, his handsome features lit up with a wild smirk. “I only caught part of it. Basically, Selene’s busted.” Sirius ran a hand through the clipped black locks. “I hate it when those two go at it like this,” he continued. “Their French becomes the older dialect and I can barely make it out.”
Harry looked up at his godfather in mild surprise before frowning. It was moments like this that Harry realized how little he really knew about the man he viewed as family. All because of Voldemort and Pettigrew. “I didn’t know you spoke French,” Harry told him after a quiet moment, fiddling with his hands in slight awkwardness.
Sirius leaned against the wall of the sun room, crossing his arms. “Yeah, French and several others,” he explained, looking over at the younger wizard. When their eyes met, Harry noted that Sirius was looking more through him than at him; it was as though he was facing a memory rather than reality. “Pure-blooded parents are known for teaching their children dozens of languages in hope of snagging the best possible match when arranging marriages,” he continued. “French is just one of many my parents forced me into…” Sirius voice trailed off as he began to scowl over some secret locked within his mind. “No matter though,” he said finally, shaking his head and grinning once more at Harry. “The ladies seem to love French and it was that that I met – never mind that. The ladies enjoy French, I’ll have to teach you a bit,” Sirius said. “I’m surprised Rebecca never taught you.”
Harry laughed sheepishly, ruffling up his hair; he needed to have it trimmed soon. “I never had a head for languages, really,” he admitted. “Amadeus tried to teach me German I think.”
Sirius laughed out at that, the bark like sound ringing around them. “That might have been the problem, but don’t you worry, pup. I can teach you a few basics before school starts; the ladies will appreciate it,” he added with a wink.
Harry shook his head, rolling his eyes at the teenager like antics. “What are you talking about?”
“You’ll see soon enough,” Sirius shrugged. “Selene’s still debating on whether or not to tell the lot of you or make you wait. Speaking of Selene though,” Sirius pushed himself away from the wall and crossed the little room, peaking down the corridor towards the kitchen door, “we should see if she’s still alive.”
“Good idea,” Harry agreed. “Brave of you to volunteer.” Vampire, yes. Wizard, of course. Boy-Who-Lived, well duh! Willing to go freely into the same room with an angry Rebecca Potter? Oh hell no.
Sirius snorted, throwing him a glance over his shoulder. “Nice try, coward. You’re going with me,” Sirius argued. “With you in tow, dear Becca is less likely to catch me with that temper of hers.”
“Now who’s the coward?”
“Not a coward,” Sirius defended. “I’m merely a self-preservest. You’re blood, so Rebecca’s less likely to maim you. Now onward, Potter!” Sirius walked towards the stairs and grabbed Harry’s wrist, hauling him to his feet. “We must be brave, my young apprentice!” He said, pushing him towards the door.
The silence within the kitchen could only be described as awkward. Harry and Sirius sat at the little breakfast nook away from the grumbling vampires. Rebecca banged pots and pans together in a noisy tirade, mixing, baking and frying countless dishes in her temper. Selene stood at the sink, washing by hand everything that she could reach in attempt to calm down; the house elves had long since vanished from the cozy yet tense room.
Sirius cleared his throat, drumming his fingers against the scrubbed wooden tabletop. “Becca,” he began quietly, sounding as though interrupting the clanging of copper and iron and the fragile clinks of porcelain and steel was a horrible crime. “You really don’t have to do that,” he told her. “Cooking I mean.” He held up his hands in submission and scooted towards Harry. “Not that I mind of course; your cooking is great,” he was quick to add when Rebecca turned just slightly from the polished beast of a stove in their direction.
“Nonsense,” Rebecca scoffed, wiping her hands on her apron before reaching into the cupboard above the crowded stove top. She brought out a ceramic tea pot with a grace that dancers would murder for. “It gives me something to do while Amadeus is away on business,” she explained as she proceeded to gather the matching cups and saucers. “Besides, the three of you could use a decent meal, I dare say so myself. Selene, mind the stove.”
“What?” Selene asked, her tone dripping with mild sarcasm. She continued washing dishes, clean or dirty, and never turned away from the sink. “Can you say that again? I can’t hear you; I’ve been abused of the ear.”
Harry shook his head at the stubbornness of the two women closest to him. Selene was simply over exaggerating again, since he knew well that the redness would go away in fifteen minutes and she’d be able to put all the earrings back in before nightfall.
Rebecca shot a sharp glance at the back of Selene’s head. “Do not take that tone with me, Selene Adeline Charisse Hart,” Rebecca warned; Harry could tell by the tensing of Selene’s shoulders she was cringing over the use of her full name. “Otherwise it shall be the other ear. Do not roll your eyes at me either, young lady,” Rebecca said sharply as she gathered up the necessities for tea. When Rebecca turned to place fresh scones on a dish, Selene turned and stuck her tongue out childishly at the older woman.
“Honestly,” Rebecca sighed as she placed the tea tray on the table and sat across from Sirius and Harry, her back to the busy stove, “I do wonder some days if there were a way to revert her back to her youth. Selene was often easier to handle as a seven year old than she is now.”
“I heard that,” Selene grumbled as she banged dishes together.
“Oh?” Rebecca asked in mild surprise as she poured tea into the crimson cups. “I thought you had gone deaf, child.” Ignoring Selene’s irritated growl, Rebecca poured cream into her tea, stirring it in smoothly. “I apologize for dropping in unannounced, though, Sirius,” Rebecca continued. “But after I finally sat down and read the papers this morning, I was in a panic. The Dark Mark after so many years…who would have imagined such a thing?” She paused to sip her tea. “Both of you, do eat the scones, you are far too thin, especially you Sirius,” Rebecca instructed as she nudged the little dish forward, smiling as they both snatched one up on reflex. “Good lads, the both of you. What was I saying…ah yes, the Dark Mark, who would have believed it? I started pouring through every article I could get my hands on and, oh Harry do not interrupt, I know I that I taught you better manners. Please do not tell me that Selene’s habits have actually worn off upon you…”
As Rebecca continued talking, Sirius and Harry exchanged a small look, wondering how to inform Rebecca of what was happening without a larger fire than what was fated to happen. Selene had gone over near the stove to put away a stack of dinner plates and bumped into an open bottle of Worchester Sauce Rebecca had been using, causing it to fall into one of the copper kettles. Selene quickly fished it out and tried to doctor up the mishap; she raised the heat beneath it while adding salt, pepper, cinnamon, brown sugar and what Harry believed to be basil. All the green things looked the same to him to be honest.
“I tried to get through on the Floo network,” Rebecca continued as a second pot started boiling over, the contents simmering into a third, “but it was continually jammed. The human telephone was even worse; I do not believe that I shall get that annoying tone out of my head for weeks.” Selene turned the heat down on the second kettle while stirring the first and adding minced garlic to the third to fix the mistakes there. “With Amadeus gone, I could not get here straight away and I was so terrible upset,” Rebecca told them while Selene removed a casserole from the oven. Sirius let out a choking noise at the same moment for Selene’s hair fell over her shoulder when she reached in the oven, a thick lock of it falling into the gas stove. “Heavens Sirius,” Rebecca gasped as Selene dropped the casserole onto the counter and smothered the little flame in her hair, “chew before you swallow. Drink some tea, it will help,” she instructed.
Once sure that Sirius wasn’t about to asphyxiate, Rebecca continued on with her one sided conversation, oblivious to the catastrophe happening behind her as Selene spooned in what looked like a pickled dish into a saucepan that had encountered the contents of the first pot. “The papers are no help in trying to find if your family is still alive - I am not finished Harry - and my house-elves could find no useful information to ease my worries. Sirius are you well? You are looking a little green,” Rebecca commented as Selene tried to stir several things at once, burning her hand in the process; Harry had always thought Selene was just teased about poor cooking skills, but watching her now he didn’t know if he could eat anything that was prepared with her in the same kitchen. “Maybe you should lie down this afternoon,” she suggested. “Would you mind telling me what happened to that Muggle family though, Sirius? To think, they even attacked their children,” Rebecca said, pursing her lips in a maternal fury. “Selene is no help for answers; she will not tell me how she received all those bruises. Selene are you minding the stove?” Rebecca asked, looking over at the sink while thin black tendrils of smoke sneaked through the cracks of the oven door. Selene was just as oblivious as Rebecca as she frantically concentrated on the stove top. “Selene? Oh! The chicken is burning!” Rebecca gasped, standing from the table. “Why didn’t you mi….oh Selene….”
Rebecca covered her mouth with a hand to stifle her laughter as Selene turned around, hiding the wooden spoon she had been using behind her back as though to show she had nothing to do with her kitchen war zone. The apron she wore was covered in nearly every dish she was near, and a few that she created. Black smoke was coming thicker from the oven and the contents of the first pot were bubbling madly, now a thick and pasty shade of green when it was originally red. A portion of Selene’s hair had singed where it had fallen and how on earth she got flour on her face was beyond Harry’s imagination.
“What happened, child?” Rebecca asked finally heading over towards the ruined dishes as she tried hard to not laugh.
“You told me to mind the stove,” Selene answered meekly, looking at her shoes with sudden interest.
Rebecca sighed and shook her head. “Much easier to handle as a little girl,” she teased. “Fetch your wand and help clean up,” Rebecca instructed as she hastily turned the silver knobs and removed the flames. “Boys, why didn’t you say anything?” She asked as Selene patted herself for her wand.
“We tried,” Harry said as Rebecca removed a charcoal chicken from the smoky depths of the oven. “You told me not to interrupt,” he reminded as Selene used her wand to clear away the contents of the pots and pans on the stovetop.
“Next time interrupt, please. I shall forgive you,” Rebecca told him, with a smile. “Good Merlin, Selene, how on earth did you manage to melt cast iron?”
The rain dripped from the eaves, trickling down the wall as the inhuman growl reverberated through the deserted streets. A man stumbled like a drunkard from the shadowed back streets, leaving his unconscious victim behind, coughing furiously, shudders raking through his body. Sunlight peaked through the storm clouds above him, causing the man to look up with blood shot eyes and curse the gods that mocked him so.
It should have been simple, it had been planned perfectly his revenge had. Every last detail had been perfected, down to what to do with that mortal of hers if necessary. But no! He was damned if it could be so easy. Edward knew he should’ve listened to their warnings, but couldn’t fathom the idea that the little bitch had changed so much in a thousand years. And now his plans were ruined, he nearly revealed his greatest asset and now he was paying the price…painfully at that.
Pain was never a crucial factor for Edward Parisi, for he reveled in it. It made him feel alive and in control, he loved the feeling of it. When those blunt objects were shot into his shoulder, bullets they called them, but this…this was different. He could feel the natural gifts of his vampiric blood fighting with his internal organs as they attempted to utterly destroy themselves. This was the pain that cost him his revenge. All because of one bite.
As Edward stumbled down the strange stone paths, he caught glances of his ghastly reflection in store front windows. Whatever it was that ran through his step-daughter’s blood was taking effect on his outward appearance as well after so many hours of fighting against it. Once flawless and smooth, his skin looked much like the corpse that he once was. Damn her! Damn her to hell!
“I warned you, didn’t I?” A cool voice drawled from the shadows of a stores doorway; Edward could tell by the tone that the man was sneering in amusement. The shadowed man released a breath of smoke from some strange smelling cigarette, filling the rainy air with a scent of clovers. “I told you not to bite, just touch.”
Edward growled, the noise mixing with the thunder above them, his gleaming teeth barred in threat and anger. “You could’ve clarified your warnings, you fool,” he snarled. “One would think you had an infa-” Edward was forced to grow silent as he doubled over in pain, eyes wide, as another coughing fit seized him. The vampire across from him merely watched on in disinterest, finishing his cigarette, as Edward was forced to clutch a wire rubbish bin for support.
Spitting blood onto the rain soaked ground Edward proceeded to wipe his mouth with the wet sleeve of his borrowed robes. “How…how long will…this go on?” He said slowly, despising the fact that he needed to rely on someone beneath him for assistance.
“Depends,” the man said simply, shrugging in the shadows. “Depends on how strong you are and how willing you are to stand that kind of pain. Countless vampires that have bitten her have succumbed to the venom in her blood within the first hour. This is why she has never sired a vampire.” There was a pause in his little speech, the click of a lighter filling the rainy silence, the little flame illuminating the vampire’s calm face and green eyes. “But like I said, it really depends on you and your will.” A puff of smoke lingered in the air. “And how gracious I’m feeling, of course.”
Edward snarled lurching towards the vampire; the bastard was holding back information!
“My graciousness could end quickly, Parisi,” the man informed him, stopping Edward in his tracks with the tip of a wand. “Very quickly indeed…” The wand was held still long enough for the message to be delivered before being returned to its proper spot. “Lucky for you, I’ve got the answer to your problem,” he continued, pulling a slim vial of a bubbly black substance from a hidden pocket. Edward snatched it away and swallowed the contents, ready for the unnecessary pain to leave him.
“Be cautious; once Selene finds out someone has been in her home, her guard will become stronger,” the vampire explained. “It wasn’t easy getting in, I might add.” Another puff of smoke filled the soggy air. “I wouldn’t suggest biting her again; those lucky enough to be blessed with that antidote have never been foolish enough to try it again and I don’t know if it will help after this one time.”
Edward merely answered by smashing the vial in the roaring gutter, letting the water wash away the evidence. There wouldn’t be a next time…he wouldn’t fail again.
The days after the Cup passed in a way that could be considered normal for someone like Harry Potter; it was all rather chaotic. Sirius was constantly being summoned to the Ministry on Auror business, since he had decided to accept the position for the time being, and Selene kept disappearing to Merlin knows where at all hours of the day and night, both returning to look upset and frazzled. Things did not seem well in either the Wizarding or the Vampire world. While it seemed like a week had passed for them, it was only two days, and already decisions were being made. The revelation of which were announced with the arrival of packing supplies for the second time that summer; oh joy. Chaos and packing was what Harry woke to on that dreary August morning.
“Harry?” Sirius called as he knocked on Harry’s bedroom door, the sound filling the room in a quick staccato. “You awake yet, kid?”
Harry rolled over and growled at the unsuspecting male. It was his night to sleep for the week, and Sirius just had to come and ruin it. He loved the man to death, but his timing needed work. Lots and lots of work.
“Go away,” Harry grumbled, his words enunciated through the pillow he held over his head.
He could hear Sirius chuckling at his mercy. “Not a chance. Now up. I’ve got a bit of breakfast downstairs in the kitchen for you, before we start working,” he explained, rapping his knuckles idly against the wood. “I hope to have us in London before midnight. Now come on, up with you, or I’ll send Selene in.”
“Fine,” Harry sighed, flopping his pillow onto the floor. “I’m up, I’m up.”
As Sirius walked away chuckling once more at his expense, Harry crawled from underneath the light weight blankets, ruffling his freshly trimmed hair as he shuffled towards the little bathroom adjacent to his room. Selene was kind enough to give his hair a trim the night before, so that it hung around his jaw line; he took the inspiration from Sirius, much to Selene’s amusement.
After washing up and changing out of his pajamas into jeans and a jumper, since it was a bit windy outside, Harry left his room and walked across the landing towards the stairs, fiddling with his wand while trying to figure out what Sirius fixed for breakfast.
‘Hmm…bacon, bacon is a good sign; bananas…bananas and bacon? Ooh, eggs, I smell eggs. Eggs are good. And, are those mushrooms? Yes, most definitely mushrooms…
Ten minutes later Harry was back in his room, this time with Selene, as they packed up all his clothes and personal items before they left for wherever it was they were going.
“Where are we going?” Harry asked, shoving his impromptu sandwich into his mouth as he literally dumped another drawer of clothes onto his bed. Selene was folding them and piling them up quicker than he could provide.
“London,” Selene replied with a roll of her eyes over his manners. She smoothed the unseen wrinkles from one of his school jumpers and set it atop the ‘Donation’ pile since he had outgrown it over the summer months. “Harringay to be exact.”
Harry dumped a pile of socks near the pillow. “Harringay, huh? That should be a nice place then. Is it the only place you have in London?”
Selene placed a pile of shirts into a garment box before setting it down into his trunk. “No, I’ve got real estate across London, but the house in Harringay is the only one available, since I rent out the others,” she explained.
“I thought we were going to stay outside of London though.”
Selene scrunched her nose in slight annoyance. “We were,” Selene answered tensely as she filled another box with more force than was necessary. “The wards were compromised.”
Harry, who had been trying to retrieve a few things that had been kicked under his bed, froze for a moment at her tone. “Edward?” He asked finally after a moment’s pause. He took her silence as confirmation. When he emerged from underneath the bed and exited the dust bunny realm, Harry looked at Selene from behind the unfolded pile of clothes. She kept folding shirts and trousers, packing them away while not really noticing a thing she did as she muddled over something in her head.
“London isn’t so bad,” Harry said brightly as he stood, brushing dust off the knees of his jeans. “There are entrances to the Underworld scattered everywhere, and not to mention Diagon Alley,” he told her in effort to remove the previous train of thought. “Plus, we could go see some of the sights, maybe take a stroll through Alexandra Park,” he suggested. “Besides, being in London means we’re close to all those shops. Think of all those bags that you can make Sirius and I carry. All of those shoes…”
Harry couldn’t help but smile like a small child when Selene gave a small laugh, smiling again. He’d suffer through tourist season at Harrods to make his family happy.
They arrived in London at a late hour, even with Selene behind the wheel. Sirius had made her drive at a legal speed limit since he hadn’t been in a car since before he was arrested and wanted to enjoy it the first time rather than cling to the seats in terror. Selene, needless to say wasn’t thrilled with this proposal, but did relent after a bit, granting Sirius his rather simple wish; Harry was immensely grateful. Once they finally did arrive in London, they made a quick trip to the Sakura District of the Underworld, Selene and Harry’s home away from home, and picked up the groceries that they had ordered that morning. After that, Selene made their way through the evening traffic of London, before they made it to their final destination. Selene stopped the car, allowing Harry and Sirius to unload the trunks and bags, before leaving them to cart them into the house while she went to find the ever so elusive parking spot. Alright, so it wasn’t that difficult to find one, since two spots were always reserved for the household, but Selene drug it out as long as possible. To be frank, Selene wasn’t quite sure if she was ready. But then again, it was either here or Grimmauld Place and she couldn’t do that to Sirius. She’d rather face the ghosts of this house, than have Sirius deal with the ones that lurked within his childhood home. Slipping into the designated spot, Selene parked and turned off the Land Rover, sitting stone still in the driver’s seat. Looking up at the rear view mirror, Selene could see the cool stone that made up the exterior of her home. By the looks of it, the boys had nearly every light on in the house, the glow of the delicate bulbs glowing behind the window coverings. She rubbed her hands across the leather covering of the steering wheel, psyching herself up to go inside; no doubt Harry thought she was parking the car in Paris by now, or something dramatic like that.
Sighing, Selene slid from the driver’s seat and locked the car behind her, before dragging her feet towards the house. She moved as slow as she could, which was saying something for a vampire, but she still managed to arrive at the front door far too soon for her liking. Gathering her courage, Selene turned the weather worn brass knob and entered the former home of Mr. and Mrs. Sirius Black. Pausing long enough to secure the locks for the evening, and slip off her pink trainers, Selene made her way through the house, dropping her keys into a ceramic dish on the antique sideboard as she passed. She wandered down the small corridor and past the archway that led to the spacious parlor and padded up the wooden stairs. Her socks kept her footsteps silent; Sirius and Harry probably didn’t even know that she was in the house.
As she walked along the landing, Selene could hear the memories of years past echoing in her mind with every step she took. The clink of dishes ringing up the stairs, laughter from small gatherings; conversations she had had in her office drifted through the open door as she passed, whispered words from the guest rooms as she prepared it for friends. She stopped before her bedroom door, their bedroom, the past rushing towards her like a looming storm cloud. She gripped the handle until her knuckles shown white, eyes shut as she blocked the memories behind stone walls. Finally, she twisted the knob, the door swinging open allowing her to walk into the darkened room. Turning on the electric lights, Selene looked around the old bedroom, not surprised to see that it was exactly how she had left it all those years ago. Everything from the mystery book on the left bedside table to the shimmering perfume bottles on her dressing table was exactly the same. Closing the door behind her, Selene started working on bringing some sense of order upon the master bedroom and bath.
Selene took careful steps in sorting her clothes into their proper drawers and shelves, hanging them up so not a single wrinkle would be found. She did the same with Sirius’ clothes as well. Selene didn’t like to admit it, but Sirius had the unfair skill to look rather decent for any occasion at hand; he could go to a ball in his pajamas and still manage to pull it off. It was very unfair in her opinion and he’d been able to do that since she had known him, and from the stories, well before then as well; to be honest, and she wouldn’t admit it either, she was glad Azkaban didn’t destroy that little talent. Once she was finished with their wardrobes, she found other things in the bedroom and adjacent bath to keep her busy. Books and knick-knacks upon bookshelves, fresh towels upon the glass shelves in the bathroom, shampoos and lotions in baskets, Sirius’ shaving kit; a little lap blanket across the back of the chaise lounge in the corner, photos here and there as well. With some difficulty, since the bed was in a futon style and rested so close to the floor, she managed to install the muggle telephone without banging her head too often. Finally, as the items in their trunks lessened, Selene placed out the items on her dressing table and Sirius’ area atop the chest of drawers. Combs, brushes, pin, and so forth were placed upon their designated spots one by one. It was then, as she opened a drawer at her table to put away and old perfume vial that she saw it. Her heart clenched in pain at the sight of the simple wooden box, hidden in her partial shadow.
The memories she had managed to avoid with her busy hands rushed forward as the slender crystal vial slipped from her limp fingers, shattering on the wooden floor. Selene was oblivious to the sound of shattered crystal and of the heavy pungent mush that poisoned the room. She one saw one word, one name, with every fiber of her body.
Reaching down with unsure hands that shook, Selene picked up the lacquered box of maple, taking in the etching that had been painstakingly engraved fourteen years ago. Her little babe, her tiny Seifer, all that she had left of him rested in her hands. His name was there, demanding attention in the center of the lid, a snake on one side, a lion on the right. Staring at his name the entire time, Selene rose from her small stool and exited the room, taking only a few steps to her left down the corridor to a simple door that opened to her unconscious command.
The bedroom sat dark, empty and bare save for the high backed rocking chair near the curtained window. All the furniture and items had been sent away after that fateful day, leaving only the mural walls as clues to the nursery intent.
As Selene settled in her rocking chair, she could hear the echoed debates over these very walls. He wanted bright, she wanted dark; he wanted Hogwarts, she the countryside; he wizard, she vampire. On and on they argued until the eventual compromise, the compromise that was left behind. As the gentle Lady Moon shone down through the window, Selene could make out the twilight that had been painted with such delicate care. The setting sun, in warm reds and gold, eased to peace behind her, casting its final warm rays onto the green grass of the meadow below, a castle looming off in the distance. These final rays grew darker and cold as the gentle moon gave off her pearly glows. Below her sat the rippling water, reflecting her beauty to those that were to behold. Day and night, as the moon rose and the sun doze, the signs of their heritage took to the skies while three little Marauders roamed in their animal forms. The fourth one? Selene didn’t know.
As she rocked ever so gently, the pain squeezed her heart. Her son never saw these walls or his father’s Animagus form. Her little son was cold and gone, merely bones and dust, gone from her arms but never her heart.
“Selene?” Sirius called out to her; Selene wished he would disappear. Her wish was ignored and he walked across the room, kneeling beside her, his larger hand covering hers.
“They lied, you know,” Selene said after a moment’s pause, her voice thick with the tears she couldn’t let fall. “They told me that time would make me heal. ‘Just you see dear, a few years and the pain will be gone. Wait and see my dear, and there will be no more tears.’ That’s what they would always say to me.”
Sirius’ grasp tightened around hers, and Selene was thankful of that. She knew that it killed him inside and out after that damn summer’s night; he mourned and cried and felt the same hurt, but he never felt the werewolf’s curse, never felt when their precious life it took.
“Fourteen years, Sirius,” Selene whispered as he took the little box from her. “Fourteen years and I can still feel him when they put him in my arms.”
From his spot on the floor, Sirius pulled Selene from the rocker to cradle her in his arms with loving care.
“It wasn’t your fault,” Sirius murmured into her ear, his voice thick, as he rocked her to and fro. His free hand slid down his leg to where the box rested near his knee. “You did everything that you could’ve done. His death wasn’t your fault, Selene. Never your fault.”
Selene placed her head over his heart, hearing it beat its mortal rhythm, while her fingers grasped at his satin waistcoat as though life itself demanded it. So many what-ifs shot through her thoughts. What if she hadn’t asked to take a walk after the appointment? What if she had listened to Sirius sooner? What if-
“You never really mourned, did you?” Sirius asked, interrupting her thought. “You went through the motions, but I know you Selene, you locked yourself up after he was taken away.”
Selene refused to look at the item he now offered her, burying her head further into his chest instead. He had opened the box, something she hadn’t been brave enough to do since the funeral. Stupid Gryffindors and their stupid courage.
“I’m not asking you to forget, Selene,” he told her, his tone soothing. “A parent never forgets.”
Selene gave the object in his grasp a wary glance, hesitant to actually take it from him. As though he sense this, Sirius placed a chaste kiss on her temple. “I’ll be here the entire way.”
It took another few minutes, before Selene took the offered item; the muggle ultrasound photos. She could still see the shape of his tiny body, the shape of his head and his little fingers. Shifting on Sirius’ lap, Selene pulled the box closer to her. Slowly, she pulled out each item from their son’s memory box. Dragon hide booties that he never wore, a dark blue baby robe decorated with tiny silver bats; a dark green pacifier with a little snitch painted on the front. Both his death certificate and a special stillbirth certificate, the little bracelet that held the luminarium stone to keep him safe from the sun and two little stuffed toys, a wizard teddy bear and a black dragon. On the bottom of the box was a folded piece of cloth, a warm scarlet color with silver swirls embroidered in by Selene. This piece was all that was left of the baby blanket she had made; the rest would forever stay with its babe. Careful of the delicate material, Selene removed it from the box and held it in her hand. With trembling fingers, she unfolded the cloth revealing the photo that had been hidden away. Fourteen years, two months, eight days and thirteen hours ago, the image was taken by a sympathetic assistant of what should’ve been a happy moment. Selene sat in a bed at St. Mungo’s, her skin blanched and tear stained. By then her tears had become blood, staining her cheeks. Sirius sat behind her, much like he was now though visibly younger, looking weary and battered with dirt and blood upon his cheeks, forehead and arms. His scratched arms were wrapped around Selene’s waist, coming around to cradle her smaller arms. Nestled in the crook of hers rested their precious bundle. One month more, one simple month, and this would have been a happy day. Just one more month. The Healers had cleaned up the baby and swaddled him up tight in a soft blue blanket. Both parents silently comforted each other in that photo, Selene’s shoulders shaking as she cried into Sirius’ neck.
Selene felt Sirius’ fingertips against her cheekbones, brushing away the tears that had fallen in silence. She wasn’t even aware that she had been crying for several minutes. But now that she was aware, she couldn’t seem to stop. Sirius held onto her tight with patience, allowing her to cry out the pain of fourteen years.
When Harry entered Selene’s London home with Sirius, the feeling of sadness pushed down on him, almost drowning him. The house seemed to be haunted by the emotion, it felt so very oppressive. Harry was normally a person that would unpack first, then have fun, but this time he took to offer to visit his family in the Underworld, just so he could resist the urge to search for Dementors in the bedroom closets.
So several hours, and countless card games at the bar later, Harry Apparated back to her home, entering the home as quiet as a tiny mouse. The difference he felt from his first arrival was so vast, Harry turned around, stepped right back out onto the little stoop and checked the decorative numbers fastened to the side of the house, just to make sure that he didn’t go to the neighbors by mistake. After double checking the numbers at least three times, Harry felt confident enough that nothing was slipped into his drinks, and reentered the house.
The sadness was almost gone, like someone had washed it away; he could still feel it in his bone, but now it didn’t feel like he were drowning in sorrow. For the most part, the house was silent. Harry could hear water running upstairs from Selene’s bedroom and the faint wurring of the refrigerator motor in the kitchen; there was a lingering scent of paint as well, wafting towards him from the upstairs. Putting his keys into the ceramic dish and hanging up his jacket, Harry kicked off his trainers and headed towards his room. Passing Selene’s room confirmed the location of the water and, after a quick glance in the room next to hers, he found the paint smell. The tiny spare room had been painted bone white in his absence, or at least touched up to refresh the paint. With a wave of his wand, the one window opened more to better ventilate the paint fumes, and Harry went to his own room.
Once in the room, illuminated by the bright Muggle light bulbs, Harry began the ever so tedious task of unpacking, even though he would have to repack in a few days time. This also served the purpose of figuring out what he needed to stock up on for another year of schooling. He put away his Morsatra uniforms, he wondered if they even still fit it had been so long since he had actually worn them, and his formal clothes; made up of muggle dress trousers and shirts. After getting his clothes put away, Harry started to clean out his school trunk, a ritual drilled into him by the Temple Sisters as a small child. Dust, lint, ink spills, everything had to be cleaned up so that the thing looked like new. He put away all his old textbooks that he wouldn’t need again, for either academic or personal reasons, making a small pile of books that would be making the trip with him. His rubbish bin was soon overflowing onto the rug with old parchment balls, broken quills, candy wrappers, a cracked ink bottle and much more.
To pass time once he had finished unpacking and cleaning, Harry chose to clean the vintage revolver Amadeus had given him for his birthday; his working Colt pistol was in its padded case near his knee.
“We’re not taking them this year.”
Harry looked up to his doorway, scooting a bit back on the floor to better see. Selene stood leaning against the doorframe wearing pajama pants and a silky red camisole, her damp hair between her hands as she dried the ends with a yellow towel. In all the years he’d known her, Harry had never seen her dressed so down, even when in her pajamas.
“Not taking what?”
Selene entered the room, throwing the wavy locks over her shoulder while nudging the case with her foot. “Automatic weapons. Only blades, small and discreet preferably.”
“Why did Dougie make that decision?” Harry asked finishing the task by polishing the silver metal.
“Dougie didn’t,” Selene answered. “I did.”
Harry glanced at her for a second or two. “Why?”
“Discretion for the most part,” Selene told him, bending over to tidy up the salvable pile of parchment. “Because of events this year, we’ll want to stay under the radar and avoid notice. Blades are easier to use should the need arise.”
“And what is happening this year to need such discretion?”
“You’ll see today at breakfast; I’m telling you, the Weasleys and Hermione when we’re at Diagon Alley,” she explained. “I don’t want to explain half a dozen times.”
“That’s fair, I suppose,” Harry sighed, putting the revolver in the velvet lined box. “As long as you tell me before the train. What is it with you and secrets?” He asked, teasing her.
Selene shrugged as she walked back towards the door, spinning the damp towel in her hand. “They keep me sane, I suppose. The less that people know, the easier it is,” she answered. She looked over her shoulder, still playing with the towel. “Make sure that gets put in the safe before we leave.”
Harry nodded as he locked the case. Even though it was an antique, the revolver still worked and could be used. Because of that, they locked it in Selene’s gun safe until they could find something suitable for Harry to safely display it in. “Yes boss,” he replied cheekily.
“Prat,” Selene smirked. “If you need me, I’ll be watching Doctor Who
on the telly.”
Harry groaned as Selene disappeared. She was one of them…a Whovian
Much to Harry’s dismay, he soon found himself in the back sitting room with Selene, watching Doctor Who
reruns until the sun came up, and a few hours later since, to his utmost horror, Selene had several home recordings of the stupid show. When Harry was positive that his mind would implode from the torture she was making him sit through, though he wasn’t actually watching it just staring at the screen and playing Quidditch scenarios in his mind, he heard the clock behind him chime, signaling that it was a quarter to eight.
“Selene?” Harry called, stretching his arms above his head, glad that he didn’t have to act like he was watching and put up with all that ‘timey-whimey’ stuff.
Selene, who had cocooned herself in a light green blanket at some point, turned her head in his direction just enough to show that he had some level of her attention. “Hmm?” Harry knew he had just been demoted by some blonde bloke wearing a vegetable.
“We’re supposed to be in Diagon Alley at nine.”
Harry sighed and stood from the sofa, resisting the urge to unplug Doctor Who
. “It’s almost eight now.”
Seeing as that was the only thing she’d said in a few hours that was longer than a single word, Harry left it as that and went upstairs to get dressed.
Selene and Sirius were taking the Weasley crew to a late breakfast in thanks for their hospitality during the World Cup. They were going to a popular place that catered to the tastes of mortals and immortals, so neither party would feel out of place. He dressed casually in fresh jeans and a Weird Sisters shirt and slid on a pair of trainers. As he ran a hand through his black locks, he noticed the two gun cases still lying at the foot of his bed. If Selene knew he’d left it there, she wouldn’t be too thrilled since he knew better than to leave them out in the open. Gathering the boxes in his arms, he headed towards Selene’s room; the gun safe was in the back of her closet. As he neared the plain white door, Harry heard the ending music of Selene’s show and decided to be quick. Get caught, get a lecture. Not get caught, get ice cream later. Harry chose to not get caught as he nudged the door open. As the hinges swung open in silence, Harry froze.
His godfather lay sprawled on one side of the futon like bed, bare-chested with his quiet snores filling the room. Harry was thrown in surprise seeing him there, for after all this was Selene’s room and not Sirius’. The thought that Selene gave Sirius this room, since he would be living here for a few months, and took a guest room for herself crossed his mind, but after spotting signs of Selene everywhere, dashed that idea to pieces. Maybe they were simply sharing the space instead of moving things before leaving for Hogwarts for Sirius to just move his after they left. Yes, that had to be it.
Sirius started to stir on the bed as he no doubt began to wake, the sound of silk sheets rustling took over the sound of snores. Harry stepped back out of the bedroom, pulling the door shut as slow as he could.
Harry froze once more, the door still open enough for him to see Sirius shift and pick something from the low bedside table. Turning his head to the left, he could see Selene stopped in mid-stride on the stairs looking up at him while nibbling on her lip. Their eyes caught for a brief second and Harry could see the sign within them that proved both his previous theories utterly wrong. He didn’t have to look back into the room to know Sirius saw him standing there. Without speaking or looking once more at either adult, Harry knelt, put the two gun cases before the door and returned to his room. Just what was going on between Sirius and Selene? Whatever it was, they’d obviously kept it secret for awhile and if there was one thing Harry didn’t enjoy were secrets.
Yes! It is under 10,000 words!! This chapter will probably put Creperum over the 100,000 word mark too. Below, are the translations for the brief French dialogue clear at the beginning of the chapter and a really short explanation on the luminarium stone. It has been so long since I’ve updated and I want to apologize for that. I’ve been meaning to update, but time has been extremely scarce. This will probably be the last update until at least August, unless we get lucky, since I will be in Europe the majority of July and time will be tight next month.
Thank you all for your patience and sticking by me through these long breaks. I do not mean to take so long. A big chunk of chapter 21 (I can’t believe we’re that far already) is already written, since it was originally part of this chapter. I’d like to give special thanks to Lisa for ripping this apart and betaing it for me.
Thank you for everything! See you next chapter. ~Selene
Mon Dieu, Rebecca, qui fait mal!
“My God, Rebecca, that hurts!
“Enfant impudent! Votre mère, bénissez-la et je vous ai élevés avec les manières! Le fait de parler à vos anciens d'une telle façon. Je devrais vous donner une raclée solide pour votre conduite, Selene.
“Impudent child! Your mother, bless her, and I raised you with manners! Speaking to your elders in such away. I should give you a sound thrashing for your behavior, Selene.
Luminarium=Light. This is the name that I finally gave to the sun that protects the vampires from sunlight and helps hide them in with mortals.
Morsatra - Death bringer
May 23, 2008 - Edited: August 7, 2011