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French Charm by elegantphoenix
Chapter 6 : Of White Weddings and Spanish Surprises Part I
 
Rating: MatureChapter Reviews: 2


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"And there's nothin' sure in this world..." [1]


"Dom," She said, swallowing hard. She looked up, her eyes wet and rimmed with red. "I think I'm pregnant."

For a moment, Dom said nothing. What could she say? Now it was her who wanted to claw her sister's eyes out, not the other way around. She wanted to call her all sorts of foul names and hex her into next week, but she couldn't bring herself to do so. It wasn't her place. So instead the only words that came out of her mouth was an incredulous "Are you sure?"

Victoire turned her back to her sister, powdering her nose and the faint dark circles under her eyes calmly, watching Dom's expression in the mirror. "I've never been more sure of anything else in my life," She said quietly.

"Have you told Teddy yet?" The questions just kept forming and tumbling past her lips of their own accord, but she didn't care. Somewhere, deep inside, she had to know the answers.

"No, not yet..." She sighed, still powdering her nose.

Puff, puff, puff.

Dom's brows furrowed in concentration. She licked her lips, anticipating her sister's reaction to the next question. "Is it his?"

Victoire shut the little silver compact with a loud, sudden snap and it clattered onto the vanity before her, but otherwise she remained as serene as ever, picking it up again before putting it away.

"Yes, of course it is," Victoire replied, her tone slightly sharper than it had been a few seconds before. Her eyes narrowed into cat like slits. Now that was the Vicky she remembered. "Don't you have somewhere to be?" She stood, smoothing her dress. "There's much too much that needs to be done before tomorrow to be wasting time with your aimless chit-chat."


On Sunday morning, every person at Apolline's chateau was either bustling hurriedly around trying to help with setting up the seating arrangements or barking orders at someone who already knew what to do. The sky was a clear, robin's egg blue and the sun was appropriately nestled behind a fluffy white cloud. It was certainly a nice day for a wedding - the wedding of the Summer, where two childhood sweethearts were finally going to tie the knot.

Why, then, was the groom catching a quick snog behind the fountain in the garden with a certain bride's sister, when he was supposed to be getting dressed?

Teddy kissed Dom passionately in their secluded area of the garden, cleverly concealed by tall hedges and rose bushes. He picked her up by her arse a little ways off the ground, running his fingers lightly up her bare thigh so it would send irresistable tingles up her leg. Dom gripped his hair tight in her hands, arching her body closer to his, never wanting to let go. Dom held on to him so tightly that Teddy stumbled backward, colliding with one of her grandmother's ornately trimmed hedges.

"Woah," Teddy laughed, righting himself again before pulling a twig out of Dom's short pinstraight brown hair. He remembered when she had dyed it just before her first year so that nobody would know that Victoire was her sister and compare the two of them. From a very young age she had known that Victoire was better than her, and accepted it, but always taking small measures just so that she could have her independence.

Dom averted her eyes sheepishly. "Sorry," She admonished softly, examining her hand, which had several scratches across the knuckles. "I suppose I got a bit carried away." Teddy took her hand and kissed her scratches, letting her know it was fine. Dom sighed.

He looked up, his brows pulled together slightly. "Tell me what's on your mind," Teddy said as he put his arm around her and they settled in next to eachother on the ground by the fountain.

"I can't believe you're getting married in a few hours," Dom breathed, toying with his fingers and trying out the feel of his laced through hers. It felt kind of nice, until he pulled away.

"Anything but that," He laughed without humor, watching as she experimented.

She frowned at his attempt at amusing her, sitting up and removing her hand from his. "This is serious, Teddy," Dom reminded him, shaking her head. "This has to stop the moment you say 'I do' and Victoire says it back."

Teddy picked up a lily from a discarded pile on the rim of the fountain, and twirled it between his thumb and forefinger. He gazed at it as he did so, as though it held all the answers in the world.

But it didn't.

It couldn't tell him right from wrong, or which girl to pick. It couldn't tell him that sneaking around with Victoire's sister really was wrong, it couldn't tell him to walk down that aisle today and marry his childhood sweetheart, and it could not tell him that his love for his bride-to-be had faded long ago - back when he'd really seen Dom for the first time. But it couldn't tell him any of that. Why? Because it was just a stupid, answer-less flower.

Teddy set the lily down on the ground between him and Dom. It was about time he started taking matters into his own hands.

He looked up at Dom. "But what if I - "

"Teddy Lupin, I have been looking for you for ages!" They both looked up to find Fleur hovering, with her hands on her hips and her cheeks flushed. Fleur hurried over and pulled him to his feet, pushing him in the direction of the house. "You need to go and get ready," She told him. "There can't be a wedding if there's no groom,"

Her mother's laughter echoed in her ears, almost as if it was really far away. Teddy looked back at her, his stormy grey eyes apologetic. Dom looked down and, noticing the flower, picked it up.

They hadn't even had a chance to say goodbye.

~

Dom held onto the edges of her vanity as a house elf did up the laces of her dress, staring at herself in the mirror. Her eyes were rimmed with black kohl and, though she had attempted to make it a little more festive, her hair was presentable at best. As Dom stared into the grayish blue eyes of her reflection, she remembered Teddy's last words.

"But what if I -" He'd said, and she couldn't help but wonder what it was he was going to say.

Had it been a good thing, or something she didn't want to hear? Had her mum inadvertently saved her from a break down, or had she discovered them a moment too early? The curiosity gnawed at her insides like mad, and she was afraid that she might not have time to see him again before the ceremony.

Suddenly, the laces of her dress tightened and all of the air was squeezed from her lungs. Why, again, had she chosen such a replacement? To get revenge on our dear sister Vicky, Her conscience reminded her with a snicker that only made her heart sink lower. Maybe upstaging her sister at her own wedding was a horrible idea after all and maybe she and Teddy were meant to be with eachother - maybe her baby was proof of that.

The house elf tightened the laces once more, beforing tying it off and disappearing with a loud crack, leaving her in her room alone with her thoughts. Dom's head was swimming and she felt suddenly like she was going to vomit again. Without a second thought, she turned on her heel and bolted for the door, down the spiral staircase, and out on the patio.

Once outside again, Dom inhaled very deeply (or rather, as deeply as her dress would allow).

"Excuse me, senorita?" At the very unfamiliar and sudden voice behind her, Dom jumped, spinning round. Before her now was a man with dark hair and dark eyes, but was obviously very gorgeous. But that wasn't what had shocked her the most - it was his accent.

"Si?" Dominique said without thinking. She blinked. "Er, I mean... can I help you?" Giving the man a quick once over, she noted the beautiful bouquet of flowers in his hand.

He nodded and grinned, his face lighting up. "My name is Marco, and I am looking for a... how you say, beautiful woman, si?" The man explained, gesturing to the bouquet in his hands. "Her name is Victoire."

Dom's eyes widened for two reasons: one, this man was clearly from Vicky's past, someone whom she wanted no one to know about; and two, this day would be ruined if she knew he was here. A very clever, very selfish plan filled Dom's head. She smiled pleasantly at the man, offering her arm to him. Sadness no longer consumed her.

"Walk with me," She said as Marco took her arm and she led him towards the garden. "Now," Dom smiled again, batting her lashes sweetly up at him. "Tell me the story of how you met my sister,"

~

Victoire gazed at herself in the mirror, her fingertips lingering on the single, elegant pearl that graced her right earlobe. They had been shipped in from a quaint and remote little boutique in Prague overnight and had been handled with the utmost care, Vic still couldn't help feeling as though something didn't feel right.

Her hand fluttered to her abdomen. Perhaps her dress was just a smidge too tight. With a sigh, she closed her eyes and shook her head. The dress had been custom fit for her, so as to make sure it was snug enough to show off her chest; she wanted to look sexy, not suffocated.

She bit her lip and turned to assess her side view. Perhaps she'd been thinking about the baby at the time, too. Was she sure that no one would be able to tell that she was already three months along? Was she sure that by going through with this her past would no longer be relevant? She'd gotten the wedding she had always dreamed of, and she would be married to the man she loved, and that was all that really mattered.

But if that was all that mattered, why did she feel like she was making a big mistake? Dozens of questions spun around in her head, and she suddenly felt dizzy, although she had been standing still. There was a knock on the door and suddenly the room stopped spinning.

Victoire quickly swiped at the wetness under her eyes, careful not to smudge her makeup. "F-five more minutes, Mum-" She began to call, but the door opened before she could finish her thought, and Dom came into view. She lingered on the threshold of the bedroom with a bouquet of flowers in her hand. Her eyes widened and she spun around. "Those are beautiful," Victoire breathed. Her tone dripped with envy.

"There's no need to be jealous, dear sister," Dom purred as she crossed the room, her lips curving into a smile. It just barely reached her eyes. "These are for you."

"Surely there must be some mistake," She replied as she eagerly took the flowers from her sister, combing through them for a note. When she didn't find one Victoire looked up again, intrigued. It was hardly possible they had been from Dom. If they were, she feared for her health. "Who sent these?"

Dom perched herself on the edge of Victoire's bed, pretending to think about it for a moment with her tongue poking out of the side of her mouth. Then she snapped her fingers. "Some guy... Marcus, I think he said his name was?" She lied.

Victoire's eyes widened and her fingers gripped the bouquet tighter. Dom refrained from smirking. "Marco," She whispered, staring at nothing in particular.

"So you know him?" Dom inquired. Victoire swallowed hard, her face flooding of color. "I will take that as a yes," She leaned forward, focusing steadily on her sister. "But the better question is... what the hell were you doing in Spain on New Year's?"

Dom remembered that she'd been home for Christmas, but then Vicky had disappeared for a span of at least a week. Everyone had just assumed that Vic and Teddy had run off together for some much deserved alone time - which everyone could understand, with the ever abundant Weasleys running around everywhere - but it seemed that the assumption had been way off base. Victoire had run off, but with someone who certainly was not her fiance.

After a moment of awkward, you-caught-me-so-I-guess-I-have-to-spill-everything-now silence, Victoire shut her eyes and sighed deeply. Her grip on the bouquet slackened. "We met in a night club in Madrid..."

The air was cold and crisp, and stars littered the deep indigo sky high above the reach of the too bright streetlamps; colorful leaves covered the pavement. Spanish pop music drifted out into the street from a club nestled between a run down building and a closed restaurant. She looked left and right before hurrying across the street, her hands deep in the pockets of the worn leather motorcycle jacket she had nicked from her boyfriend's closet, and her blonde hair fanning out behind her, rippling in the night air.

A woman with scarlet lipstick grinned at her as she held the door open for her and the blonde slipped by, just as the song changed to flamenco. Men grabbed their favorite girls and pulled them onto the dancefloor, doing moves she'd never attempted, even in her daydreams.

"
¿Por qué no estás bailando?" A voice asked from behind her, the language foreign to her. She turned just as a man with nice eyes and even nicer hair took her jacket, revealing her simple black halter dress underneath.

She put a hand up to her ear and shrugged. "I'm sorry?" The blonde asked, having to raise her voice a bit for him to hear her over the music. "I don't... I can't understand..."

Recognition filled his dark brown, almond shaped eyes. He smiled, and her heart warmed. "Oh, you are English!" He said, putting his hand on the small of her back and leading her across the room. "I was just asking why you are not dancing," His eyes were full of appreciation as they roved her body. "A beautiful woman such as yourself should be out there. As mi madre says, '
Una flor no puede florecer en la sombra'." He smiled. "A flower cannot bloom in the shadows."

Her cheeks flushed. "You're too much," She told him softly, looking away, gazing at a couple dancing with passion a few feet away in longing. Oh how she wished that she could move as passionate as the Spanish could. Her Gran had forbade her and her sister from learning how, claiming that it was much too vulgar for proper ladies.

Well, she was almost twenty, at a club in Madrid, and Gran was nowhere to be seen. As far as she was concerned, she could damn well do as she pleased now.

"My name is Marco," He said, taking her hand and kissing it, his eyes never leaving hers. "Dance with me."

"Victoire," She replied softly.

"Dance with me," Marco repeated.

She shook her head. "I can't dance," Victoire told him, turning to leave and forgetting that their hands were still entwined entirely. In a split second she felt a tug on her arm, and then she was spinning, until she ended up in Marco's arms, about three inches from his face.

He was grinning.

"You seem like a natural to me," Marco observed, his dark eyebrow raising. "You are graceful, like the gazelle. I have never seen anything like it,"

"I took ballet when I was a girl," She blushed.

"Ah! Then you know that dancing is less about using your head" - Marco took her face in his hands - "and more about using your body." He took her by the hips then, making her jump. Marco winked, before taking her hand again. "It's all in the hips." He walked backwards now, leading her out onto the dancefloor.

"But I know I can't -"

He pressed his finger to her lips. He leaned down to her ear and murmured, "I said no thinking."

Victoire smiled, and finally let him take her into the little crowd of people - and they danced. For hours they drank, and ate, and danced, and she didn't think at all. It was the most fun she'd had since her seventh year at Hogwarts, and she was happy to be finally free from her Gran's strict rules, her star sister, and her crazy family, even if only for a night. Suddenly, Marco stood from where he'd been sitting, and she started shaking her head.

"I'm afraid you're gonna have to dance with yourself this time, Marc," Victoire chuckled, sticking out her foot from under the table. She'd taken off her heels a long time ago. "My feet are killing me."

Marco laughed. "I was actually going to ask if you wanted to, how you say... get out of here?"

She smiled, gathering up her shoes from under the table before standing up, too. "Si," Victoire told him. He grinned and kissed her hand, before running off to get her coat.

"What happened after you left the club?" Dom inquired, seemingly having really gotten into the story. Victoire couldn't recall seeing her blink.

"You're a smart girl," Victoire told her sister quiestly. "I'm sure you can figure it out." She toyed with her compact, an antique passed down for generations from mother to daughter the month before she got married. It was part of tradition; cheating on your husband-to-be certainly was not.

Dom's eyes widened as she shot up from where she sat on the bed. "You didn't." Victoire laced her fingers together across her abdomen, glancing down at it. Dom stumbled backward, bracing herself on the bedpost. The room was starting to spin.

She had.

"Dom, you have to understand. I love Ted -" Victoire tried to explain, but Dom refused to listen anymore.

"I have to tell him," She told her, turning for the door, but Vicky was quicker. She picked up her wand and commanded the door to shut and lock before rushing to her side. She put a hand on her arm but she shook it off.

"I beg of you, Dom, don't tell him about this. He doesn't have to know. I-It could just be our little secret..." Victoire trailed off, breathless. For the first time, her tone was pleading.

Dom spun around and glared at her. "You weren't going to tell him at all, were you?" Dom yelled, her hands clenched so tightly that her arms were shaking. "He deserves to know! He deserves so much better than you -"

"You think you're so much better for him, don't you?" Vicky shook her head, laughing bitterly.

"Anything's better than a bossy, cheating, good-for-nothing whore," Dom spat, ripping the veil from Victoire's hair and tossing it on the ground.

Victoire gasped. "You know, I had a feeling you were trying to steal him from me, but I'd decided I didn't want to believe it. Although now I am beginning to," She rolled her eyes. "There's no way he could love you more than me. We're childhood sweethearts, remember? We're supposed to be together," She jutted out her wrist, showing her the string bracelet that was tied there with five beads spelling out 4-E-V-E-R.

She'd had it since Teddy made it for her when she was seven and he was eight.

"That doesn't mean that it's all set in stone," Dom muttered distractedly, still staring at the place where the bracelet had been, even though she'd pulled her arm away again.

She just shrugged, "You're right," Victoire admitted, leaning closer to her sister. "But it's the next best thing."





Disclaimer I own nothing but the plot and whatever OCs you may seem to come across along the way. JK Rowling owns the rest (:

AN I'm sorry for the long wait everyone, but here is the 6th chapter (finally!). I had it written for a while, but I just needed to add some twists and a flashback and bam! The second to last chapter was born. Both parts are going to be extra long, trying to tie everything together and finally resolve the story. Thank you to all of my faithful reviewers (and readers!). This story was so much fun to write.

[1] - taken from White Wedding Part 1 by Billy Idol


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