Chapter 68 : Life's Changing Around Me (I'm Going to Make it Mine)
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Life's changing around me, and I’m going to make it mine
I'm reaching out and living by my rules
Time's moving way too fast
- Sabrina Main Theme, Nickoleon Network
“Sirius! You, fuckwit! Get in here!”
Sirius slowly crept into the bedroom. He looked like a puppy that was about to get yelled at; and he was.
“What did I do wrong?” he whined. “I can’t even think of anything at the moment!"
“You have three guesses,” I told him, standing with my hands akimbo.
“One! Eh! Wrong!"
“Wait!” he protested. “That doesn’t count!”
“Two! Eh! Wrong!”
He glared menacingly at me. However, given my state, I didn’t really give a fuck about how Sirius was looking at me.
Under his breath I could hear him mumbling, “I didn’t smother you, I didn’t belittle you, I didn’t side with not you on anything, I didn’t beat up any little children . . .”
Deciding not to be the cliche, angry girlfriend who shoves the positive pregnancy test in her bewildered boyfriends face, I declared, “Okay, we’re gonna play charades.”
Poor, Sirius; I almost felt bad for him. He looked so bewildered. However, I couldn’t quite muster up sympathy for him.
In the next ten seconds I squeezed in the following: a suggestive hip-thrusting motion, and very excited face. I also mimed someone casting a spell.
It was obvious that Sirius had more common sense than James. However, it was his shining moments that really made me doubt that. “There’s a dance; they will be serving yummy cupcakes. It’s at Hogwarts.”
“No, dipshit ”
“Wait, my mistake. It’s at the Ministry.”
And I laughed. Right then and there - I laughed. I shouldn’t have been laughing; I was pregnant. I was barely eighteen years old and pregnant. But Sirius, my Sirius, made me laugh, and that was all that I needed at that moment.
I ran up to him and hugged him. “Come on, you dumbarse, figure it out ”
“What?” he laughed, his manner joking. “Are you pregnant?”
I gave Sirius The Look. He returned The Look with The Other Look.
“Holy mother-fucking shit,” he whispered. “Oops, I mean, darn it.”
I waved my hands in front of his face, probably interrupting some sort of interior monologue or epiphany. “Let’s get one thing straight; our kid’s not going to be some embarrassing, little rule-following child; we’re going to teach him to curse like a man . . . Or a woman, I suppose.”
I crossed my arms over my chest, daring Sirius to contradict me. He didn’t contradict me. Instead, he hugged me lightly from behind and said, amused, “We are going to be such bad parents.”
I laughed, knowing that he was right. “Don’t you know it.”
Sirius sighed and collapsed onto his bed. I fell down on top of him.
“Ugh, you definitely are getting fatter.”
I stuck my tongue out at him and struggled to get my arms under his back so that I could lay there and hug him. We lay quietly for a while before Sirius says, “So you’re actually okay with this whole going to have a baby thing?”
I considered it for a few seconds. “At the moment . . . Yes. However, I’m pretty sure that the whole situation will eventually sink in, at which point I’ll have some sort of mental breakdown and need help picking up all the pieces.”
He laughed - maybe he didn’t know that I was completely serious . . . But not at all Sirius, because that was his job. Neither of us said anything for a while, and I found myself getting drowsy. I was dozing ten minutes later.
I didn’t wake up until it was dark out; Sirius was gone, and I heard loud raging music in the next room over.
Ooo, yay! A party!
I got up and had to grab onto the bed-post for support; I stood up too fast.
In a few seconds, I regained my balance and traipsed out of the room and into the den down the corridor. When I hit the corridor, the smells of the party hit me.
You know, the smells that are usually good ones - chips, cheese, pizza, sugary snacks - things that usually send you running towards them. Of course, when you’re pregnant, that’s not the case. I had to veer off to the right and detour to the loo so that I could puke. I hated puking.
I am so never getting pregnant again.
I quickly cleaned up and exited the bathroom as if I hadn’t puked out my guts. (For the thousandth time that month - thank you hangovers. Well, perhaps it hadn't been all the hangovers, after all.)
Ah! Remus! Shit crap!
I can’t tell him yet - but he’ll know He’s Remus; he’s like fricking God, he’s knows everything!
I stopped walking towards him and stood there, ringing my hands nervously.
Remus sighed and frowned when he came to a stop in front of me. “Crap, Anna, what’ve you done now?”
“Nothing!” Well, fuck. If he didn’t know something was up before he certainly done now.
“Will you just tell me? I’ll find out anyway.”
I looked wildly around the room. “Uhhh . . . Uhhh . . .”
Luckily, I spotted Sirius dancing his way across the room with a slice of pizza in his hands. “Sirius! Over here!”
He looked up and smiled brightly when he saw Remus and I. He continued dancing over to us; it was an excruciatingly long period of time.
“You dumbarse girlfriend is hiding something,” Remus accused. I stuck my tongue out at him; he returned the gesture.
Sirius smiled. “Yeah, I know.”
Remus looked mildly shocked. “Oh, well, then can I know?”
“. . . Nope.”
Remus cried out in frustration, before grabbing me by the shoulders and rocking me roughly back and forth, trying to force the answer out of me.
Sirius jumped to my defense. “Watch it, mate! She’s going to have a baby! . . . Oops.”
I suppose the only way to describe Remus’ reaction to that was gob-smacked. Completely, and totally gob-smacked.
“I . . . Wow.”
Around us, the party continued. Music blasted, I could hear Damon’s tipsy shouts and declaration of joy echoing throughout the villa. The doorbell rang and a cheer went up as the pizza guy announced that he had arrived with ten more pies.
“Why don’t we grab our other two imbeciles and talk this out, eh?” Sirius suggested. He led me out to the back porch while Remus went to fetch James and Peter.
Sirius and I were sitting on the swing, rocking gently back and forth when James and Peter stumbled excitedly outside. “What is it?” Pete asked. “What’s the news?”
I got unnecessarily nervous all of a sudden; there was no reason for the sudden case of chills and jitters I was getting. I mean, these were my best mates. I was about to open my mouth and say something when -
“Hey, you lot, what’s with the funeral?” I looked up to see that Darren had joined us. Apparently I looked just about as thrilled as I felt at the moment.
“Uhhhh.” I had nothing to say. “You know, Remus was totally lying, there’s nothing-”
“Aha! I’d wondered where you all had gotten to.” Oh, crap, not Damon too.
“I didn’t need a fucking audience for this,” I muttered.
Sirius puts his hands comfortingly on my shoulders and I shook him off. Psh, dumbarse. How was that supposed to help?
“I have an idea! Let’s let Remus tell everyone!” I was excited at the prospect of me not having to say anything.
Remus smiled nastily. “Nope. This was your fuck up, Anna, you can tell everyone.”
I glared at him. He was so fricking lucky that I wasn’t one of those sensitive, moody pregnant chicks. Okay, maybe a little moody, but I was like that anyway. “Well, I suppose it’s best if I just come out and say it . . . I'm . . . pregnant.”
Crickets. Stupid crickets. That’s all I heard, ‘cause everyone was dead silent.
Then, “Holy shit!” I looked towards the doorway to see yet another member of the audience - Stephen.
And then - honest to God, could’ve killed them - they all started to slow clap Sirius.
I was readying myself for some kind of blow-up reaction when an owl flew past our little group and dropped a letter at my feet. Temporarily distracted, I picked up the envelope, it read, ‘Jason.’
“Oh, shit. Oh hoooooly shit.”
“What?” Sirius peered over my shoulder at the name written. “Oh. Shit.”
“Damon, man, make sure you come for the wedding, alright? And the bachelor party and all that,” I reminded him, as Sirius and I got ready to board the plane back to England. We could have Apparated, but no one seemed to know whether it was alright for someone who was pregnant to Apparate, and we certainly didn’t want to ask anyone who would know from first-hand experience (ie - my mother.)
Granted, after all the Firewhiskey I drank over the course of the month before I realized, Apparating was probably the least of that baby’s worries.
Sirius and I had to go home; we had to tell my Mum and Dad and Jason. He had to tell Mr. Potter. Coming back with us was James. His and Lily’s wedding was in a month, or so, and they needed to get going on planning.
James was terrified of the wedding planning, but, somehow, I felt like Sirius and I had a little more to be scared of.
I bid goodbye to Remus, Pete, Darren, Stephen, and Damon and walked on board.
Behind me, I could hear Sirius threatening James. “If you don’t behave, mate, we’re going to have to sedate you.”
Luckily, with that warning, James shut up and was pleasantly quiet throughout the ride.
And, my stomach was pleasantly not puking through the ride.
Back in England, my stomach wasn’t as pleasant; I made a mad dash to the loo, and luckily, didn’t puke all over the airport.
While I was puking, Sirius rented a car. “Now,” he said, as I approached him. “I can’t drive . . . I know you can. But can you please promise not to kill us?”
James was looking fearfully at me and slowly backing away.
“Sure.” I smiled and whipped the keys out of his hand.
As I traipsed away, I heard him whisper, “Dear, sweet Merlin, please keep us alive during this extremely illegal trip.”
An hour later, we had dropped James off at his Dad’s house, where he was meeting with Lily, her parents, and his Dad to begin planning.
The ride to my parents’ house was rather silent, especially considering the fact that it was Sirius an I in the car.
I think the only thing I said during the entire car was, “Fuck my life.”
Three hours after we dropped James off, we pulled into the driveway of my house/old house.
“Anastasia,” Sirius said, grabbing my wrist as I began to exit the car. “There are things you can do so that you don’t have the baby . . .”
I shook my head. It wasn’t any sort of love for the unborn kid, or some ethical belief. (Not that it was wrong for some to think that way.) It was simply that I believed everything happened for a reason. “No. I’m going to do this. I mean, if I were still in school, then maybe I would’ve, but…”
I got out of the car, and shut the door with my uncharacteristically nervous, shaking hands. Looking through the window of the house, and seeing Mum, Dad, and Jason eating dinner made them shake even more. I took a shaky step and stumbled.
Sirius caught me by my arms and lifted me back up to my feet. “Anastasia . . .”
I turned to look at him. “Anastasia. I got you into this mess, and I’m going to take responsibility for that . . . But this isn’t only because I feel responsible. It’s also because I love you more than everything, even chocolate.”
He got me laughing, and the nauseous feeling subsided slightly. “So, what are you trying to get at, Sirius?”
“Anastasia Xanthis . . . Will you marry me?”
Sirius, you are such a fuckwit.
However that little pregnancy thing made me a bit less abrupt than I usually was. “Sirius . . . No. You know how I am. There’s no way I could commit to something like that.”
“But you can commit to a baby?”
I shrugged. “Just don’t question my logic, please. You know it only makes sense to me.”
He nodded and grabbed my hand. “Alright. Are you ready?”
We walked slowly up to the front door. I felt as if it was a funeral march. And who knew, it could quite easily turn into that. Sirius and I looked at each other briefly, before he knocked sharply on the door.
Inside, I heard the ‘clink’ of silverware on a glass plate, the scraping of a chair, and heavy footsteps. Jason opened the door.
“Hi, Jason!” I put on one of those huge ‘I’m not in trouble, and haven’t done anything wrong’ smiles and held my arms out wide to hug him.
He put his arm out in front of him to stop me. “You’re supposed to be in Greece; what did you do?”
I stuttered. “Uh . . . Nothing?”
“Eh! Wrong! You did something, and I know it!”
I sighed and relented. “Well, can we go inside first? I’ve got to tell Mum and Dad too, and it’ll be way less horrible if I only have to say this three times.”
As I stepped through the threshold and walked down the corridor, I could hear Jason muttering behind me, “Three times? So bad that she’s had to tell people this three times?”
As soon as I stepped into the kitchen, I decided to play the ‘innocent little girl’ act, no matter how untrue it was. “Mummy! Daddy!”
My Dad accepted my hug with open arms. Sometimes, if I didn’t know him better, I would have sworn he was flying high with the clouds.
My Mum, however, was far more hostile and knew that I’d screwed up. “What did you do, Anastasia? And why is Sirius here to help tell us?”
Uh-oh . . . She used the whole name . . .
And she probably knows, as well . . .
“Well, you see, it’s a funny thing-”
“Oh, I doubt that.” Mum did not look happy.
“Okay, maybe you’re right . . . Er, Sirius d’you want to take it from here?”
If not in a potentially hostile environment, I’m sure Sirius would have laughed at my silly suggestion. “You’ve got to be kidding me. I love you, kid, but not that much.”
“Thanks for that,” I mumbled under my breath, before turning back to my parents and Jason. “Well . . . Remember how you two always wanted to Jason to have kids so you could be grandparents?” I paused, gauging their reactions.
My Mum looked raging mad, and I hadn’t even confirmed anything yet.
Dad still looked confused, but I could see realization dawning on his face.
And Jason, who probably had made some sort of inference the moment he opened the door was looking evilly at Sirius.
“Well you don’t have to wait!” I told them excitedly. “I’m having it for you!”
A spoon clattered from my Mum’s hand. My Dad knocked over his glass in surprise.
Jason didn’t move a muscle . . . And then, he burst out laughing. “Anna, that was fantastic! I’ve never seen you keep a straighter face!”
I laughed nervously, and then noticed that Sirius had backed up a couple steps, farther away from my ‘ticking bomb’ family. “Haha, yeah, well, it’s easy to keep a straight face when you’re not kidding.”
And that is when my ‘ticking bomb’ family, exploded bigger than an A-bomb.
“So, Sirius, what do you think?”
Under the influence of the supportive Mr. Potter, and my angry and intimidating family, Sirius and I were going to live together. Much to the chagrin of my parents, I was still disinclined to (and therefore, not going to) marry Sirius.
Sirius shrugged at the one-bedroom flat. “I dunno . . . I just feel like we could get something much nicer if we go into the country . . .”
I nodded. “Well, alright then! To Somerset!”
Sometimes, when I was younger, Mum and Dad would drive Jason and I down to Somerset county (specifically, the city of Bath), where our Mum’s parents had moved when we had. We’d visit them and be spoiled to bits, and it was all good fun. The hot springs, the funny tourists, (though, at that time, we were hardly more residential than the tourists themselves.)
But, those fun times in Somerset made me want to move there. After driving around for a bit, we came upon Glastonbury. It was a small town - no more than 8,000 people lived there, and the River Brue ran right through it.
As Sirius and I walked around the town, I told him, “Sirius, this is where I want to live . . . For now, at least.”
We’d stopped in a pub to get something to eat. I was temporarily off alcohol (it was a miracle that I hadn’t already caused damage with my hardcore partying.) Sirius had just finished placing our orders when the conversation took a turn.
“Anastasia . . . Are you sure you want to live with me?”
I thought about it. The idea had been thrust upon me, and in a moment of pressure, I’d agreed without even thinking. And here he was, giving me a chance to take back what I’d said.
Therein lay the question - did I even want to?
Well, let’s weigh the pros and cons . . .
Pros: you can do it all the time, you’ll have a companion and not be lonely, you’ll have someone to cook for you, you love Sirius, it’ll (slightly) get your parents off your back.
Cons: fights are more likely, too much commitment might drive you away from Sirius, you loose everything you own . . . it’s not a good idea to loose a house.
And, after listing and thinking for a long while, I came to a conclusion. “Yes.”
“Yes?” Sirius sat up straighter, appearing excited. “You want to live with me.”
I nodded, and took one of his hands. “Listen, Sirius. I know I may not say it often, but I love you. And (although I’d rather not be in this situation at all,) I’d rather be knocked up by you than anyone else.”
Sirius put his hand to his heart in a mocking gesture. “Oh, wow, I’m just so flattered.” He paused. “But, actually, I am.”
"Not to mention," I added, "that I actually have been living with you for the past few years. So what's the difference, really?"
We ate in a mostly contemplative silence before hitting the streets of Glastonbury once again. We were walking down a particularly tree-lined (yet, relatively populated, considering the small number of people living in the town,) street.
I like to think that fate is a real concept . . . So, I was obviously quite thrilled as a small, brunette, mustached man nailed a ‘For Sale’ sign down in the front yard of his home.
The house he had stepped out of was cute looking. It was built from homologous brown bricks, and the roof was made from slate of a slightly darker color. A stone path led from the front door to the street, and the entire house (so far as I could see) was lined with big, green bushes.
“Excuse me, sir?” Sirius addressed the man.
The man had just finished nailing and looked up, smiling pleasantly. “Can I help you?”
“Your house is for sale?”
The mad nodded.
“Er, would it be too intrusive to ask for a look inside?” Oh, that damn Sirius and his politeness.
“Of course!” the man smiled jovially and at once engaged us in conversation. “You know, with this recession and all, I was sure it would take months to find somebody to buy the house. And, what do you know - the second I nail the sign up, we’ve got someone looking already!”
The cheerful man continued talking as we walked through the threshold, where he briefly introduced us to his wife, and two teenage daughters.
It gave me a weird sort of chill to realize that those girls were hardly younger than me, and here I was, only two or three years older and pregnant, looking to buy a house with Sirius. (Who had, luckily and coincidentally, just come into a large sum of inheritance from his uncle.)
The house began in nothing more than a big open space, divided only by the outer walls of the house, and the walling of other rooms. To one side was the sitting room. To the other side was the dining room. Upon venturing through the door across from the entrance, we arrived in the kitchen. There was a bathroom, a large hall closet, and three smallish bedrooms in the rest of the pleasantly small, one-story house.
“Let’s buy it,” I told Sirius, when the mustached man (who we learned to be named Ed,) stepped away for a moment to answer the phone.
“Er, Anastasia . . . Shouldn’t there be a little more thought put into this? Maybe a bit of looking around? This is the first house we’ve seen,” he pointed out, quite reasonably.
I gave him a look.
“Okay, it doesn’t matter, I suppose. But, are you sure? Because a house isn’t something you can just trot back to the store and return.”
I nodded. “I like it. I want it.”
Sirius shrugged. “Well, alright.” Ed returned to the room, smiling. “Ed, we want the house.”
Ed appeared quite shocked. (Though not in an unpleasant way.) “Wow, that was a rather fast decision.”
Sirius nodded, chuckling. “Yeah, well, Anastasia here likes to do things a bit off-the-cuff,” he said, patting my fondly on the shoulder.
Ed smiled. “Very well, then. We’ll meet back here in a few weeks?”
I readily agreed, and Sirius did so, as well. Then, I happily trotted off to enjoy the rest of the day in our future home.
A few weeks later, Sirius took a large sum of money out from Gringotts, had it exchanged to Muggle money, and then gone to a Muggle bank where they turned the heaps of cash into a single, small sheet of paper. A check. This was all done through some confusing system that I could never for the life of me figure out – maths were never my strong suit (neither in Muggle primary school, nor when I had a glimpse of Arthimancy in my Third year.)
We met up with Ed and his family, exchanging the check for the house. At that time, a monstrous moving truck pulled up along the street next to the house. (The driveway being too small to accommodate such a large vehicle.)
Sirius and I had purchased furniture and a few appliances; our own moving truck (we’d decided to do it the Muggle way, as to avoid awkward explanations with neighbors or Ed and his family) was parked a bit down the street, ready to pull up as soon as Ed’s truck pulled out.
“It’s been good doing business with you,” Ed said, nearly an hour later, when everything they were taking with them was loaded up into the van.
“Same here.” I smiled happily.
He waved and climbed into the station wagon with the rest of his family, pulled out of the driveway, and followed the moving truck down the road. Simultaneously, the movers with mine and Sirius’ belongings pulled up and began to unload.
Two hours later (in which Sirius had helped the movers as much as he could, not allowing my pregnant self to help the Muggle way, and not allowing my magical self to help for fear of startling the Muggle movers and breaching secrecy,) all of our newly purchased belongings were crowded into the expansive entrance area of our new home. It took only a few minutes after that to levitate everything to their proper places.
Heaving a tired sigh (though I hadn’t been working, I’d been on my feet all day), I plopped down on the couch, pulling Sirius down next to me. “It’s kind of crazy to believe we have a house now . . . Where we’re living . . . That belongs to us.”
Sirius nodded wordlessly, and kissed me lightly on the cheek.
For a few moments, Sirius looked at me liked he wanted to ask a question.
He was silent for a few more moments. “. . . Can you shag when you’re pregnant?”
Wow, I never thought of that . . .
“Well, we’ve done it before.”
Sirius shrugged, and nodded. “I was thinking that we should probably ‘christen’ our new house.”
Smirking devilishly at the father of my child-
Wow, that sounded weird!
-I agreed, and pounced on top of him.
As it turned out, we had purchased a very comfy couch.
A/N: I believe this is one of those times when no more words are needed than ‘nuff said.’
A/N2: However, I feel the need to address the abruptness of this chapter. It was totally and completely meant to be like that. I’ve read far too many stories where the lead-up is just so terribly obvious, and the girl has it totally figured because she missed a period and is puking up a storm and has started to show before she even hits a month (I thought I was quite clever - covering up Anna’s puking with a hangover.) So, I decided to do it up ‘Anna style’ and pretty much have her not notice until the very last moment.
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