Chapter 57 : All My Walls Come Down
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You speak and it's like a song
And just like that all my walls come down
. . .
Love you save me like nobody else
Surprise! I bet you weren’t expecting a letter from me, were you? But I have a surprise! (That would be another surprise, in addition to getting this letter.)
I’m coming back! Yes, I know - cue the fanfare and parade.
But, all puns and jokes aside, I am coming back this year. I decided that I had to tell somebody, but I mostly want it to be a surprise, so I had to decide who the best secret keeper would be . . . And it would, quite obviously, be you.
So, I’ve got to go, as I’ve got to finish some last minute packing and help my parents out a bit.
I’m assuming that you and the rest of the guys’ll see Anna off on the First . . . See you then!
I hit my hand to my forehead. It wasn’t as if I wasn’t excited that Stephen was coming back; it was quite exciting news, actually, to have a bit of the past come back. However, it was exactly what Anna didn’t need at the moment.
Anna and Damon had hooked up at least seven times throughout the month and a half or so that we were all together, and Darren had told me that Anna tried him as well. I laughed, of course, when he told me; it was hilarious to see Darren - the hardcore man-whore - tell me about how he had to literally talk Anna out of hooking up with him.
But it was also very upsetting, because something was wrong with Anna. And, like I’d said, the last thing Anna needed was another former flame to come back.
But, that was towards the bottom of my mental ‘Top-Ten-Things-To-Worry-About’ list, because I was busy getting ready for a date with Dora when Stephen’s owl arrived.
I don’t have time for this right now, I thought. Hmmm . . .
I turned to the owl and held out two shirts; one was white and blue striped and the other one was a light, mint green. “Which one do you think is better? Hoot once for the blue and hoot twice for the green.”
The owl hooted once. “Yeah, that’s what I thought, too.”
I threw it on and pulled my jeans up quickly when I saw the time. I had to meet Dora at the Leaky Cauldron in five minutes. Anna and the Marauders, who were also staying at my house (Damon and Darren had returned to their respective homes) were still sleeping soundly, at eleven o’clock in the morning.
Not that I blamed them, of course. If it hadn’t been for Dora’s insistence to meet me at the atrociously early hour, I would still be sleeping as well. But, as it was, I wasn’t sleeping, so I had to make the best of my early, early hours.
“Good bye, Mum!” I called, as I started the fire and picked up the jar of Floo powder. “Make sure you get them all up and tell them to meet me at Florean’s at three!”
I threw some Floo powder into the Fireplace and the previously red and orange flickering flames turned to a bright, solid green. “The Leaky Cauldron!” I shouted, stepping into the tickling flames.
The first thing I saw when I arrived in the Leaky Cauldron, half a minute later, was Dora sitting, looking particularly bored at one of the uneven wooden tables. I couldn’t help but laugh as the elbow she rested on the table came out from her under and her head fell to the table.
She whipped around, probably to tell off whoever had been laughing at her, but her grimace turned up-side down when she saw me. “Remus!” She sat up a little straighter, smiled a little brighter, and played with her hands a little bit more.
I bent down and kissed her on the cheek; I may have shagged quite a few girls, but I was in favour of private displays of affection. (However, my level of affection for said girls was debatable.)
Dora, however, had completely won me over.
“Remus, I can’t believe this is the first time I’ve seen you all summer! I read your letter - it really sounds like you guys are having a lot of fun.”
I nodded. “We are. You know . . . I think we’re going back to Anna’s house for the last few days before school starts again - I’m sure no one would mind if you showed up for a day and came to the beach with us.”
She smiled. “I’d love that.”
We sat in silence for a moment; it wasn’t awkward, just a patterned break in conversation. “So, have you ordered anything yet?”
She shook her head. “I was waiting for you.” Then, she made to get up from her chair.
I got up and placed my hand lightly on her shoulder to stop her. “That’s nonsense. Just tell me what you want and I’ll order it.”
“What a gentleman,” she said, winking at me. After she told me what she wanted, and I walked away towards Tom, the bartender, to place the orders, I could have sworn I heard her say, “But you’re not like that when we’re alone, are you?”
Very true, I thought. I’m not a gentleman at all.
For the next half hour or so, we chatted and laughed and sipped our drips. (I had a fire whiskey; she had a butterbeer.) But at that point, I decided it would be nice to roam around Diagon Alley for a bit.
I got up from the table, pushed my chair in, and walked over to Dora. I had learned the hard way that she did not like having her chair pulled out when she was already in it. However, I stood by, expecting some sort of complication, and I got one. She pushed her chair back, stood up, accidentally putting one foot on top of the other, and found herself heading towards the ground. But I caught her.
Fanfare! Hooray for Remus!
“Thanks.” She smiled.
I returned her smile, and grasped her hand before leading her out the backdoor and into Diagon Alley. We walked leisurely down the street for a while, waiting to find a shop that struck out fancy, when Dora said, “So . . . It’s going to be rather different with you not at Hogwarts next year.”
Uh-oh. This doesn’t sound good?
“I mean, you’ll probably be off becoming Minister for Magic, and I’ll just be a Sixth year . . .” Dora continued to talk, but it was one of the only times I ever turned her out; I was too concerned with my own conflicted thoughts.
Minister for Magic . . . Hardly. Not for a werewolf - no, sir. She obviously doesn’t know what she’s talking about . . .
But it’s not like she knows that, I argued with myself.
Maybe you should tell her? I mean, you guys have been together for a while now.
Sure as hell longer than you’ve been with any other girl, my mind taunted.
“. . . So what do you think, Remus?”
“Er, about what, again?”
Dora sighed and rolled her eyes. “You weren’t listening to me, were you?”
“I’m sorry, I’m sorry,” I apologized quickly. “I’ve just got a lot on my mind.”
She nodded understandingly. “Me too, and that’s why I needed your opinion on this!”
“On what?” I asked eagerly, hoping that my wanting to help would put me quickly back in Dora’s good graces.
She shook her head. “You go first - if you’ve got something on your mind, I want to hear about it.”
And in a horrible turn of events, I was forced to quickly decide whether or not I could tell Dora my secret without her running away in fear.
It took you four years to tell Anna - do you really think you could tell Dora? You’ve barely know her for a year.
I’m much different that I was two years ago.
True . . . True.
“Uh . . . Er . . .”
Quick, Remus, if you’re going to do something, you need to do it now!
. . . No . . . No. I can do this.
“Dora, maybe we should sit down?” I gestured towards a bench that was nearby to where we were standing. Dora scrunched her eyebrows and looked at me; she looked rather upset - I couldn’t imagine why.
You’re making it sound like you’re breaking up with her, dumbarse.
Regardless, she followed me to the bench and sat down across from me. I took one of Dora’s hands in mine and looked pleadingly into her eyes.
Here’s to hoping that Dora isn’t too good to be true.
“I have something to tell you. I was rather hoping I wouldn’t have to. But . . . At this point, I’m way too far in to back out. Dora, I love you, and I need to tell you my secret.”
It was the first time I’d told Dora that I loved her.
She went to open her mouth and say something, but I cut her off. “Hold off on whatever you have to say for just a minute; I’ve got to tell you before I back out.” Still holding her hand - though more tightly than before, and admittedly probably more painful for Dora - I looked discreetly around to make sure no one would hear my proclamation.
“I love you Dora; you’re definitely different than any other girl I’ve been with . . . Mostly because I haven’t actually been with you,” I stumbled around. It wasn’t coming out quite like I had hoped. Rather than making it sound good, I was just reiterating my former Casanova tendencies. “Anyway, my point is - I love you, and because of that, I have to go against my better judgement and tell you something . . .
“I’m a werewolf,” I whispered.
Oh shit, oh shit, oh shit, oh shit. Just blew it - oh shit, oh shit, oh shit.
She continued to look at me, her thick, blonde eyelashes fluttering over her bright blue eyes.
“I . . . I . . . I . . .” she stuttered.
Now what do I do? I was about to walk cowardly away. Dejectedly, I said, “Alright, well, I’ll just be goi-”
“Don’t!” she cried, putting her hand on my shoulder and keeping me seated on the bench.
Don’t? Don’t go? Why not?
I waited for Dora to say something. Instead, we just ended up sitting quietly for a minute.
“Do you hate me?” I finally asked, when Dora did nothing but look down at her hands and pick at her nails.
“No,” she said slowly. “You can’t help what you are, am I right? But . . . I dunno, it’s just a lot to take in, you know?”
I nodded. “Tell me about it.”
We sat in silence for a bit, and I was shocked when Dora threw her arms around my shoulders and refused to let go.
She finally released me from her clutches (not that I was complaining) and said, “Remus, I love you, too.”
I don’t know about Dora, but in my head, there were fricking fireworks going off. I don’t know if it was the thrill of actually loving a girl, but something got me so joyful.
Up until I had met Dora, I slept around. A lot. I can admit that.
There was no real reason why I did it; I suppose I just started young, and kept up with tradition. But I knew Dora was a keeper; we hadn’t even done it (or planned on it) and I loved to be in her presence.
She loved me for me - horrible, terrible, hairy disease and all. She loved me even though I was the worst I could possibly be - Dora made me feel wonderful.
She was calm, cool and collected, despite a clumsiness that could rival Anna’s. She was nice. She liked my friends. And, of course, she was something to look at, as well.
Tall and lean - like a dancer’s body - with the brightest, tousled, wavy blonde hair I’d ever seen. When we finally did shag, it would certainly be a treat for my eyes.
I dove on Dora and kissed her excitedly and quickly.
She pulled away, laughing, after a few seconds. “And to think, I thought you were going to break up with me.
“And now, Remus, it’s my turn to share a secret with you.”
Secret? Crap. I hate secrets.
“You ready?” she asked.
I nodded fearfully as she stood up.
Oh, crap. Why does she need to stand up? Please, tell me she’s not a closet- axe murderer!
I forced my head to go up and down and never took my eyes off of Dora’s.
I blinked for only a second, and did a quick double-take.
“Holy fucking shit!”
Before me stood, not Dora, but some other, strange person.
She had long, mousy brown, straight hair. She shrunk a good amount, as well; if Dora was standing next to Anna, she probably would have had a good four or five centimetres on her. Her lean body had taken a more average size, and her narrow hips gave her a rather rectangular body shape, overall.
“What the hell, Dora?”
“I’m a Metamorphmagus.”
Well, I certainly wasn’t expecting that.
I looked at the new Dora, and thought back to the old one.
“So . . . Which one is the real you?” I asked.
Dora quickly morphed back into her familiar form. “This one,” she indicated the tall, leggy blonde that I had come to know and love. (Not that, of course, a change in her appearance would have changed the way I felt for her.)
“What I was before is usually the state that I take on when I get depressed, for whatever the reason happens to be, you know?”
“Thank you for telling me,” I said earnestly, “but, why did you keep it a secret? It’s not some terrible, foreboding condition.”
She shrugged. “I dunno. I usually just don’t tell anybody about it.”
“But it’s such a cool trick,” I protested. “You were born with one of the coolest magical abilities! Show it off, dammit!”
She laughed and smiled. “Alright, then. I’ll take you advi-”
Cue the completely mental best mates.
I looked up to see Sirius galloping (yes, galloping) towards me, with Anna clinging tightly to his back. A bit further behind was James, with Peter on his back. Now, James was a skinny kid - there was a good chance Pete outweighed him; it was a funny sight to see.
“Hey, you lot!” Dora said brightly, turning around to wave to the complete and total dumbarses that were my mates.
They waved enthusiastically and James and Sirius seemed to simultaneously skid to a stop in front of us; then, in a perfectly synchronised motion, Peter and Anna jumped off of the respective backs to land in the middle of the other pair.
We all stood quietly for a moments; apparently, no one had anything to say.
But Dora did. “Hey, guys! Guess what I can do!” This time, Dora transformed, not into the same person she had before, but different. She grew a little shorter, but not much. Her long, blonde hair retracted into her head and became a bright, turquoise blue color. Her nose grew wider, and her eyes grew smaller.
Anna, Sirius, James and Peter were speechless. All four stood wide-eyed and open-mouthed at the not-Dora in front of them.
“Holy hell, you’re a Metamorphmagus!” cried Peter.
Dora smiled sheepishly and shrugged excitedly.
“Ohh, so that’s how you did that,” Anna marvelled.
I looked oddly at her - could she really not have figured that out? “Did anyone ever tell you that you’re a complete and utter idiot?”
She nodded. No further explanation.
“It was a rhetorical question,” I pointed out.
“Well, I answer those all the time.”
I decided to end my conversation with dear Anna there; further continuation may have resulted in loss of brain cells on my part.
When no one had any better suggestions, Sirius piped up, “Hey, why don’t we go get our school stu-” Pause. “Oh my God! We’re not going back!”
I half expected Sirius to drop to the ground on the spot and break out into tears. I was quite proud of him that he didn’t.
Anna punched him in the arm. “Stop reminding me!”
“Hey, we’re just as upset about it as you are,” Sirius defended himself.
“Really? Because you don’t have to go back to school all by yourself and-”
“You have Darren!” he cried.
Dora glanced sideways at me and nodded (not-so-discreetly) towards the dynamic duo - currently a few steps away from a real argument.
“Why don’t we go to Florean’s?” she quickly and deftly suggested.
Anna and Sirius immediately stopped fighting, and after mumbled and quick apologies, we were all walking off down the alley.
“You know,” Anna began. “The only thing I don’t like about this place is that it’s in an alley.”
Help. Help. Loss . . . of . . . brain . . . cells.
“Anna,” James said slowly, his unspoken thoughts seeming to echo my own. “We’re in Diagon Alley. Do you not realize this?”
“Oh, I do. I just think this whole area would be so much nicer if there were trees and grass. The only place around here like that is Florean’s.”
James gave her that ‘you’re a total dumbarse’ look. But he didn’t say anything. We’d all learned not to question Anna; she had her own brand of insane thoughts.
“Oh, shit, Anna! Look out!” And then there was Anna, sprawled on the rocky pavement.
I should have known that wasn’t the end of it.
Dora tripped over Anna and landed on top of her with a cry of surprise.
Both were too doubled-up in laughter to roll off of each other.
“You know,” Pete whispered to me, out of the corner of his mouth. “This could turn into some pretty hot girl-on-girl action.”
I hit him. So did Sirius. James gave him a high-five, the stupid tosser.
“So, Remus, anything interesting happen today?” It was not the first time in my life that I wondered whether or not Anna was really more observant than she let on. However, I always shot down the idea.
Hmm . . . Stephen’s letter, me telling Dora I get really hairy and angry once a month and run around all deadly-like, Pete implying that you and Dora would make a hot lesbian couple. Nope, just a normal day for the Marauders.
However, I knew that two out of those three were quite a big deal. And one was a secret. So that left me with only one topic of conversation.
So I went on to explain how I had finally told Dora about my ‘furry little problem.’
“I’m proud of you, mate,” Anna said.
However, I appreciate the sentiment.
“Me too, Moony,” James added in. Sirius and Peter echoed the first two, and somehow, we all found ourselves in a giant group hug.
“I love you guys,” Anna said, though it came out rather muffled as her face was squashed into my back. “I know I’m not always the best mate to you guys, but I love you all so much.”
“I love you guys, too,” Pete said. “Who would’ve thought a group of outcasts like us could end up so happy?”
“Aww, man, this is going to be one big tear fest,” Sirius whined. We were all still in that giant hug, but over the course of half a minute, we’d fallen over, and were now more like a pile on the floor than a hug.
“You guys are awesome!” James cried.
“I love you guys, man!” I added in, not even caring that I was on the bottom of a body pile that probably totalled more than forty stone.
Nothing says love like a hug.
A/N: So, I was wondering, as Polychromatic rounds the final corner to the finish (though, in actually, we’ve still got a bit to go - I just like all this done ahead of time,) if anyone was interesting in helping me with some graphics. I’ll need a banner, and if you want to volunteer, I’ve got some pictures and ideas. I’d also really appreciate it if maybe you’ve made quite a few graphics before, and really know your way around Photoshop (or whatever program you use.) I’ll also need some chapter images for the sequel, and I’ve got pictures for those too. Usually, I make my own chapter images, but my computer crapped out on me, and until I get a new one, I can’t reload the program onto it.
A/N2: Any video editing buffs out there? I was curious and interested in making a trailer for Polychromatic to put on YouTube (I’ve seen those before.) Right, so as I was saying, anyone who’s kinda familiar with video editing - is there a good, fairly simple software I could work with? Also, where do I find video clips? Thanks mucho for any help. :D
A/N3: The next chapter marks the first day (September 1st) of Anna’s Seventh year at Hogwarts. What surprises await them, I wonder? . . . We already know. ;)
A/N4: You guys are awesome. :D
A/N5: Fun Facts - one of the last ones before they're all done!
Darren: Darren is fond of Muggle contraception as opposed to the spells that Wizards have come up with.
Anna: When she was eleven, she found a stack of Playboys under her brothers bed.
Sirius: His favorite scent is vanilla - Anna has charmed herself to constantly smell like vanilla; the two have no connection.
James: Can play piano, cello, bassoon, and the harp.
Remus: Has walked in on his parents having sex five different times throughout his life.
Lily: Cannot fall asleep without some kind of noise - at home, she sleeps with an overhead fan on. At Hogwarts, she sleeps with the window open so she can hear wind and crickets.
Anna: Wanted to die her hair purple for a month during her Fourth year.
A/N6: Sorry about the terrible choice in music for this chapter - I had a flash from the past and it just kinda fit with the chapter. I also am sorry about all the people I just offended by calling it a 'terrible choice in music.' ;D
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