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Chapter 2 : Secrets
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“ She screams in silence, a sullen riot penetrating through her mind waiting for a sign to smash the silence with a brick of self-control.”
Teddy left the Prefect’s compartment at the front of the train after tossing a handful of dungbombs into the “Confiscated” bin. He cast a spell over his hands to clean them, relishing the fact that he was now seventeen and would be able to use magic even after he got off the train. He pushed his green hair out his face and tiredly rubbed his eyes as he set off towards the back of the train to look for Victoire—his Prefect’s duties for the year officially over.
Though he popped his head in on several compartments full of family friends, Weasleys, and classmates, Teddy wasn’t very surprised to find Victoire sitting by herself.
Victoire’s fourth year of Hogwarts had been lonely, coinciding, not coincidentally, with the onset of raging teenage hormones. Not only did she have Veela blood, but the hormones and pheromones to accompany it. She looked a full two years older than she actually was, much to Bill Weasley’s horror. Boys suddenly began to stare at, pester, and pursue her, and girls, whom were turned hostile by Victoire’s Veela pheromones, distanced themselves from her or openly began to spread rumors. 1/8 the blood, but none of the self-possession of a Veela, made Victoire vulnerable. Well, as vulnerable as Gryffindor House’s Quidditch keeper could be. Teddy didn’t truly understand how Victoire could bravely face hostile athletes wielding bats and bludgers but have her feelings hurts by gossip. That was until he really began to hear the gossip following her break-up from Roger Davies II, a Ravenclaw boy in Teddy’s year.
“Sarah said that she slept with him.” Teddy heard one of his female classmates whisper in Charms from the table behind his.
“Well, then she can add Roger to that extensive list, can’t she?” Her friend replied, and both girls sniggered derisively.
And on the way to Flitwick’s musical ensemble practice, levitating his upright base in front of him, he heard a 5th year boy tell his friend that Victoire had begged Roger not to breakup with her. Needless to say, the young Ravenclaw was surprised when Teddy suddenly sentenced him with detention for ‘looking funny’.
Other than the occasional abuse of power to defend Vic’s honor, Teddy ignored all the rumors and sneers. He did not pry into to the true nature of her and Roger’s breakup, and Victoire did not volunteer any information. He just stood by her side as always, like he had that night when she snuck into the Gryffindor 6th year boy’s dormitory and woke him up bearing the news.
Teddy sat bolt upright when Victoire tapped him awake, surprised to see her standing next to his bed looking very pale and shaken in the moonlight.
“Roger and I broke up,” she croaked before breaking into sobs. He quickly removed the scarlet blanket from himself and wrapped it tightly around Victoire, pulling her into a tight bear hug. He cast the Muffliato charm around his bed hangings and let her cry into his chest until they fell asleep.
“Good morning,” he mouthed when they had been woken up by the sounds of his roommates getting ready. Vic smiled back at him from where she was wrapped like a spring roll in his blanket, her eyes puffy and red.
Apparently noticing his own blanketless state for the first time, she whispered, “Aren’t you cold?” Victoire attempted to extract herself from the scarlet comforter with the intention of sharing, but had only accomplished making a good deal of noise including one particularly high-pitched squeal when she had almost rolled off the bed.
“Ted?” He heard Brian, his roommate ask. Obviously, the Muffliatio charm had worn off. “Are you awake, mate?” Footsteps were moving closer to his bed. Victoire looked panicked, so Teddy reached under his pillow for his wand, indicated that she be quiet, and quickly cast a Disillusionment Charm over her.
A moment later, his bed hangings were violently opened. Teddy covered his face with his arm and pretended to have just woken up. “Close the curtains, you prat, I’m trying to sleep.”
“Prat? What about you, lazy bum; it’s almost time for lunch and we’ve got to study for our Transfiguration exam!” Brian exclaimed, somewhat anxiously as he had been struggling in their N.E.W.T. level Transfiguration class.
Teddy groaned dramatically. “Go on down, I’ll meet you in the Great Hall.”
Brian, however, seemed unsatisfied and lingered by the bed, shifting his weight back and forth between his feet. Teddy raised an eyebrow in question. “I thought you may have had a girl up here,” he said, awkwardly scratching his nose, “I heard a squeal.” Brian said the last word slowly as though he didn’t believe that Teddy could have made such a noise.
Victoire kicked her leg out impulsively, accidentally kneeing Teddy where it really, really hurt. His eyes watered. He cried out, his voice rising to an unnaturally high-pitch as he spastically reached forward to clutch his groin, but thought of Brian’s presence and grabbed his upper leg instead. In the commotion, Teddy felt Victoire tumble unseen from the narrow bed. Brian was left confused as to why his friend was suddenly withering around like he had just been kicked in the Gobstones. “Did you hear something like that?” Teddy gasped.
“Yeah. Mate, are you all right?”
Teddy nodded vigorously, tears streaming embarrassingly down his beet red face. “Leg cramp, terrible leg cramp,” he lied, “I’ll—meet—you downstairs.”
Finally satisfied, Brian nodded and turned to walk out of the dorm, looking back toward Teddy as though he were vomiting slugs. He eventually left, mumbling something that sounded suspiciously like “toss pot.”
“Sorry,” she groaned from the floor. The sound of her fall had been muted by Teddy’s cry of pain. She extracted herself from the blanket and stood. The dorm now empty, Teddy lifted the charm off of Victoire. It was not an easy task considering he was still curled up in pain and couldn’t see her. Victoire’s apperance managed to distract him from the throbbing ache he still felt.
Her hair was tangled and her knee high socks pooled at her ankles, both of which could have been the result of this morning. However, her shirt, which had seemed misbuttoned in the dark, was actually missing buttons. Several scenarios on the nature of Victoire and Roger’s break-up played in Teddy’s mind—most of which made him want to hex Roger Davies’s scumbag face into oblivion.
“Don’t worry about it,” Teddy finally replied to her apology, pulling his eyes away from her unkempt appearance to meet her eyes. He had to clear his voice to get it to return to its normal pitch. He wanted to ask her about the preceding night, but thought better of it.
However, some of what he was thinking must have shown on his face, because Victoire said, “ I don’t really feel like talking about it right now.” Looking sad, she crawled back onto the bed and wrapped her arms tightly around his middle. Teddy squeezed her back, hoping to comfort her. “You’re the only boy I can trust,” she declared, her voice vibrating in his chest.
“Thank Merlin, that’s finally over,” he said by way of greeting as he entered the compartment, pulling his wand and a book from the pockets of his robes. In quick succession, Teddy had shrugged off his school robes, tie, sweater vest and shirt to reveal a faded band t-shirt hidden beneath the whole lot.
“You know, for someone who supposedly likes rules, you certainly waste no time in getting out of that uniform.” Victoire said, barely wasting a glance on him as she changed the color of her nails with her wand.
Teddy looked offended as he ruffled his green hair. “I do not like rules; I’m just clever enough not to get caught breaking them.” And as if to prove his point, he pulled a confiscated Fanged Frisbee out of the pocket of his discarded robe and chucked it at Victoire. She caught it without flinching with the hand she had previously been holding out towards the window, attempting to decide if she liked her newly orange nails.
Damn Weasley Quidditch skills. Teddy thought.
“Someone’s stuck up” Victoire sing-songed, referring to his previous comment.
“Wart-hogged face baffoon.”
Teddy raised an eyebrow before scrunching up his face and morphing his nose into a pig snout. Victoire gave him a wide, mischievous grin. It was a beautiful smile, but it didn’t quite reach her eyes. And he had been hoping to make her laugh.
Made uncomfortable by Victoire’s lingering unhappiness, he buried himself in his book, the book that he had never shown anyone since he had found it in the attic—not even Victoire or Harry. It looked like an old copy of Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, beat up from frequent use and yellowed with age. But Teddy knew better. He opened it up to the cover page, which read:
Silently, Teddy thought,This journal is the property of Moony. The book gave a small shudder. Teddy turned to a page he had marked with a picture of him and Victoire playing a duet on the piano. The entry on Flobberworms disappeared, and was replaced with his father’s neat handwriting, the ink faded a little from age.
On the train again. Sixth year is over and our final year looms ahead. I say—write—looms because I cannot help but thinking on it with dread. My last year at Hogwarts, my last year under the protection of Dumbledore, with this terrible evil moving over England, I fear that life will never be as peaceful or as easy as it is now. How I envy my friends! Prongs is excitedly talking about following his father into the Department of Magical Law Enforcement, confident that he will do well enough on his N.E.W.T.S to get into Auror training. Padfoot is, of course, thinking along the same lines. And let’s face it, despite having broken every school rule, everyone knows they will accomplish exactly what they set out to do. And me? By law, I am not allowed to work at the Ministry, or be a Healer like Lily wants to. Plus, I’m rubbish at Potions…
But enough of this self-pity, Remus. Someone has to cheer up this compartment. Ever since Lily and Anne stopped by to talk to me, James has done nothing but draw L.E.s onto a spare bit of parchment and occasionally roll his eyes whenever Sirius reads off another ad for flats from The Prophet. Prongs doesn’t understand why Padfoot feels this need to move out of the Potters now that he’s seventeen, but pride is the simple answer. Plus, as Sirius has suggested more than once, it will be a great place to bring girls. Pete’s been building a rather impressive house of cards out of an Exploding Snap set; I am considering causing it to explode. Pete will get singed, Sirius and James will laugh and then they will stop being so damn morose and serious. That’s my department. Sorry, Wormtail, you’re taking one for the team…
Oh, another thought. Prongs keeps shooting (dare I say it?) empathetic glances in my direction since he caught me staring—avidly, I hate to admit—at Anne earlier. I think he’s on to me. I mean, I’m not mad about her the way he is about Lily; I just happen to find it intriguing that her eyes are the same color as the lining of her Ravenclaw robes . . .
An annoyed tut drew Teddy out of his teenaged father’s words. He looked up to see the light blue eyes of his best friend trained on the book as though it had mortally offended her. This happened almost every time he pulled it out. Teddy suspected her annoyance had something to do with the fact that he had never shared the secret of what was supposedly his father’s old textbook with her. He sighed, and moved the picture of the two of them together, now smiling at each other and singing “Rock the Casbah” to mark his place.
He looked up at Victoire, but she was staring out the window, sitting on her hands and looking apprehensive. After a moment, Ted turned back to his book but before he could begin reading…
“Sorry?” Teddy inquired, setting the book aside.
“I did--,” Victoire began again, but again her voice failed her. She took a deep breath, apparently concentrating very hard on not looking at him. “I didn’t have sex with Roger,” she blurted out, her face turning trademark Weasley red.
Teddy suddenly felt very warm and fidgety. He brought his feet down from where they had been resting on the seat to the floor. He and Victoire had never talked about their relationships with other boys and girls. It had always seemed a taboo subject between two people who had spent most of their summers together making mud pies and climbing trees. Not that Teddy had much to say on the subject anyway. Sure, he had asked a couple of girls to Hogsmeade and had snogged Kara Adams in a broom closet a few times, but he had never had a girlfriend. Between his studies, Prefect duties, music practice, commentary for the Quidditch games, keeping all the various Weasley’s from doing anything too stupid, and hanging out with Victoire and his dormmates, Teddy never had the time or, honestly, the desire to spend most of his waking hours with an undoubtedly silly girl. Not that he didn’t spend most of his waking hours with Victoire, but she really wasn’t a girl. Was she?
Teddy let his eyes wander over Victoire for the first time. Her small hands were resting in her lap, her nails now a dusty rose color and her wrists looking impossibly delicate. He brought his eyes up. Long silvery blonde hair cascaded around her face and over her collarbone that peeked out prettily from the V-shaped neckline of her shirt. His eyes continued to follow the neckline of her shirt, but, with a jolt of realization, he averted his gaze.
Victoire was a girl, a gorgeous, fit, almost-a-woman girl with nice skin.
“Teddy?” Victoire was giving him a questioning look, causing the skin between her eyebrows to pinch together. Her cheeks were still slightly flushed from her confession.
Right, Teddy thought, I haven’t said anything yet.
He cleared his throat. “I never thought you had…slept…with him.”
Victoire smiled weakly up at him, before dropping her gaze again and gulping. “Roger—he wanted to, but I—I didn’t. He—er—got a bit aggressive, so I pushed him off, told him to stay away from me and ran. “
Teddy was aghast. Concern for his best friend mixed with rage at Roger Davies II was causing his heart to beat painfully fast. By the look on Victoire’s face he could tell his hair had lost its green color.
“Oh, please, don’t be upset, Ted!” Victoire pleaded, crossing the compartment to sit next to him.
But if Teddy was made this upset by the incident, than he couldn’t imagine the emotional bedlam Vic was going through. Sympathy washed over him, allowing him to regain control of his emotions. He took a deep breath and willed his hair emerald green again.
“Don’t worry about me,” he said, shaking his head, “ How are you?”
Victoire laughed and took his hand in both of her own. “I’m fine, Teddy; I have you.”
Teddy’s facial expression lightened for a moment before a dark scowl crossed his normally cheerful features. “I wish you had told me sooner, so I—“
“So you could what, Teddy? Kick his arse from here to Norway?”
“It’s an appealing thought.”
“What? And ruin your chances at becoming Head Boy?” Victoire shook her head incredulous. “There was no way I was going to let you throw that away on me.”
Teddy met Victoire’s gaze for the first time since this conversation began. It pained him that Vic actually thought so little of herself that she wouldn’t tell him her woes for fear he’d do something brash and jeopardize his shot at Head Boy. It was trivial compared to how much he cared for her. “ I wouldn’t be throwing anything away.”
“Well, he’s not worth it anyway.”
“But you are.”
Victoire smiled at him, a little sadly herself as though Teddy was missing a major point to her argument. She chose to drop the subject, however, and asked Teddy to play something. “It will make me feel better.”
Teddy gladly consented, and stood to begin rummaging around in his magically expanded trunk for his guitar, a slow, steady anger continuing to pulse through his system.
A/N: Hey, I'd just like to thank you for reading so far. I'm not overly thrilled with this chapter, and I hope you, dear reader, don't feel like you were just on a conveyor belt of a chapter. I envisioned Teddy as a musician, because I wanted him to resemble his parents and not be just like the Weasleys and the Potters. As remus was studious and Tonks loved music, I figured Teddy was one of those kids that can play several different instruments. Anyway, I hope you enjoyed it. Please review; I appreciate the feedback.
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