Chapter 12 : Reflections
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Renee couldn’t sleep. She felt anxious about going back to school, even though she knew Allegra, so didn’t have to worry about being on her own.
Allegra was fast asleep, curled up in a ball. Renee moved to the other side of her bed, trying to cool down. She decided that she would go and get a glass of water. Both Terese and Sirius had told her to help herself to food and drink. She got up and crept out of the room and downstairs to the kitchen and got her water. As she crept back towards the hall she heard voices. She stayed where she was, not wanting her best friend’s parents to think she was eavesdropping on them.
“Babe, are you ok?” Terese’s voice was full of concern.
“I’m fine. That little shit isn’t going to get to me anymore” Sirius replied, with a stubbornness to his voice that Renee had heard frequently in Allegra’s.
“Jesus, Sirius. Could we not have this again?” Terese was exasperated now.
“Have what, Tess?”
“This whole thing of you pretending to be oh so macho and bottle things up until we end up having a row and all that crap.”
“I’m not bottling anything up.” Terese sighed.
“One of your old school friends has just died Sirius, you’re bound to feel something, no matter what he did.” There was silence for a while. Renee peeked around the door in the hope that they had gone back into the lounge and she could creep back upstairs. Instead, they were still standing in the hall way. Terese had her arms around her husband and he had his head resting on the top of hers.
“You know what gets to me most?” He asked her eventually. She pulled back and pushed his hair off his face.
“The thought of what would have happened if we hadn’t suspected him in the first place and gave him the veritaserum…”
“I mean it Tess. James, Lily and Harry would be dead. And you… what if he had got you to Bellatrix? You wouldn’t have been strong enough for her, pregnant. And then what? She would have killed you and Francesca. I nearly lost you Tess. I couldn’t have born it if I had. And Cesca. Then there would have been no Steven. No Allegra. No Addie.” Renee stood in the kitchen, wishing that she couldn’t hear any of this.
“That scares me too” Terese said quietly. “But you know, you didn’t lose me and Cesca. Or James, Lily and Harry. We’re all here. With Steven, Allegra, Adriel, Harry and Aurelia, Harry’s kids. Remus and Tonks. Teddy and Tabitha…”
“Alright, Tess. I get the picture.” Sirius said. “You’re right.”
“Of course I am. Potters are always right.” Renee could hear the teasing tones in Terese’s voice.
“Seriously though, you know I wouldn’t be without you and the kids don’t you?”
“You are getting sentimental in your old age, Black. But I know. I would change a second of it.”
“Not the Samantha fiasco? Or that trip to Paris?”
“Nope. The making up was too much fun.” Sirius laughed.
“Very true” he murmured. Renee cringed, now strongly hoping that they would go upstairs to bed before doing anything else. She heaved a silent sigh of relief when she heard Sirius speak again. “Come on, Mrs Black”. Renee peaked through the door, thankful to see Sirius carrying his wife upstairs. She waited until she heard the click of their bedroom door at the end of the hall until she crept upstairs herself and back into Allegra’s room. As she got into bed, Allegra sat bolt upright, her eyes round with fear.
“MUM. NO. Steven…Teddy… Make it stop…Make it go away”
“Allegra. Allegra wake up” Renee sat on the edge of the bed next to her. Allegra stopped shouting and slowly shook herself awake.
“Ren?” she said eventually.
“Yeah. Are you ok?”
“I was dreaming…my mum… in Italy…”
“She’s fine Al. I heard her and your dad come upstairs.”
“Sorry, Renee. I don’t usually talk in my sleep.”
“It’s ok. I understand.”
Allegra lay back down, and Renee got back into bed.
“Reading that newspaper article, I guess it made me think…” Allegra’s voice trailed off.
“Yeah…” Renee agreed. She was thinking about the events of the day. Having heard Sirius and Terese talking, it made her think about her own parents. They hadn’t really got on as far as she could remember. There had never been any rows as such. Just numerous frosty silences. Allegra had told her that Sirius and Terese had had some really big fights over the years but mostly they made up not long afterwards. Her parents had let things lie, therefore there was usually a lot of tension and Renee had never been sure how to react. She had spent most of her childhood blaming herself for whatever the problem was.
Whatever they had been like though, she missed them.
“How do you do it?” Allegra asked her.
“Cope with what happened? I only saw a… I suppose it was like a memory… of what happened to my mum and I know she’s ok.”
“I don’t know. I just take it a day at a time.”
“Not easy though.”
“No.” They lay in silence for a little while. “Allegra. This Christmas… It would have been really hard if you hadn’t invited me…”
“It’s been fun.” Allegra replied sincerely. “Mum told me to tell you that you’re welcome anytime.”
“Thanks. I appreciate that.” Renee said. And they both fell asleep feeling better.
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