Chapter 7 : Marauder Demons
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There was the soft mutter of voices.† Clouded and hazy...I couldn't make out what was being said.† But they were deep and oddly soothing.† Angels, my brain whispered to me. Those are the voices of angels.
"Angels," I repeated through stiff lips.
There was a silence for a moment.
"Did you hear something?" Oh.† The words were finally making sense.
"I bet heaven is beautiful," I grinned with a loopy smile.† Merlin, I felt wonky.
"What the fuck?"
And, with great effort, I managed to pry my eyes open.† I tried to blink away the mist that seemed to be covering my eyes, but all I managed to do was lessen it.† The tilting and spinning was still at work and...there seemed to be a unicorn in the corner.† How pretty....
Heaven looked remarkably like the Hogwarts infirmary.† And the clouds were strangely bed like.† And did all the angels look like the most attractive boys at my school?†
No...wait...not just any boys either...I knew those faces....† The Marauders?
Nope.† This most definitely not heaven.† This was hell.† A hell designed just for me but a hell nevertheless.
"Ah. She lives," the demon wearing James Potter's face said weakly.
The Remus Demon sent him a dark glare.† "That's not exactly something to joke about at the moment."
"Away!† Away, Demons!" I shrieked while scrambling out of whatever was pretending to be a bed.† "Back! Back, I say!"
All the damned creatures stared at me with blank looks.
"Say, Moony, just how much of the drug did Poppy give her?" James Demon asked, giving a poke in the side to Remus Demon.
"Shoo! Shoo! Go away!" I continued.† Why weren't they leaving?
"Uh. Does someone want to go get Poppy?† I think this needs to be dealt with."
"I'll go," Sirius Demon replied, with a disgusted look on his face.
It took the beast only a few seconds to come back with a Madame Pomfrey Demon.† And, during that time, I ensued a long stare down of the Remus Demon. His face looked much like his counterpart in Hogwarts.† He even sounded like him.† He tried to use his trickery to make me obey him.† He used silky words and soothing phrases but I wasn't fooled by such deceptions.
"Oh, dear! Yes, I see what you mean, Mr. Black," Pomfrey Demon agreed.
"Yeah, she's fucking high as a kite."
"Language, Mr. Potter." He muttered his apologies.† "Now, the problem is going be getting her to let me come close to her.† Medical magic has to be done from a nearer proximity...."
Stupid, demons.† I'm not as absurd as you think. Like I would ever let you-
"Not exactly necessary, Mr. Black. But effective nonetheless," the demon sighed.† She came close to me...much too close.† But there was nothing I could do.† My body was rooted to the ground in its defensive position.
She placed her wand in the smooth space just above the bridge of my nose.† Try as I might to squirm, I couldn't move at all.
And, very gradually, the haze of my vision crept away.† My mind was suddenly clear and unbarred.† And I felt ridiculously foolish.
"Oh, Merlin," I moaned when I had been un-stunned.† Why couldn't I have been one of those people that didn't remember anything when they were on a trip?† Damn my life.
"Miss Marshelle, how many fingers am I holding up?" I glanced at her appendages.
"Three, Madame Pomfrey," I said with a flush on my cheeks.
"Yes...well, she's fine now.† Perhaps you would like to continue to chat with each other," her lips twitched as she hurried out of the room.† The healer was far more welcoming of me than some of the professors, but that wasn't to say that she was going to play patty-cake and braid hair with me.
And then all stares were on me.† Well...all except Sirius's, which was focused on the floor.† In fact, his entire body was giving off the air that he didn't want to be there and would rather be, oh, I don't know, plucking out every beautiful hair on his head one by one.† Either way, he was ostracized from the rest of the group and was leaning, arms crossed, against the wall.† I hoped that a stack of bedpans would somehow fall on him.
"So, guys, what's up?" I squeaked.
Remus deadpanned at me, "Elaina, you almost died."
I blinked.† "Well...at least it was almost, yeah?" I tried to joke.† Remus returned with another icy stare.† "Okay, look.† These things happen.† Probably."
"Yeah," Remus retorted. "They happen when you're old and have lived life.† Elaina...this is† because of that thing, isn't it?† That's why, right?"
I sniffed.† "I have no idea what you're talking about."
"Elaina," he said sharply.
"So I've been caught then?"
"Oh you've been caught in more ways than you think, Marshelle."† James held out a hand in which a piece of paper was crumpled.
"Detention slip.† Funny, Hogwarts doesn't look too highly upon students beating each other up in the corridors.† You'd think Sirius would have learned that by now...not to get caught, that is."
"Fuck off, Prongs," he muttered from the corner.
"My first detention," I said thoughtfully to the slip of paper.† According to it, I was going to spend my next weekend polishing the frames of all the paintings in the school.† Fun.
"Lovely," Remus snapped.† "Now, back to the topic at hand.† Elaina, you need to tell them."† No, Remus, I couldn't.† Not when this "friendship" we had was still so weak and fragile.† Thus, my skills at evading questions came back into play:
"So...how long was I out?" I turned to James this time.† Remus's eye twitched.† I could tell that he was getting more than a little annoyed with me at the moment.† Pissed, I would say actually.
"'Bout a day," he guessed with shrug.
"A day?" I repeated.† "How am I not dead?"
"If it has to do with what I think it does, I can tell you.† If you tell them first," Remus offered.† Damn you, Lupin.
"I'd rather not," I reasoned.
And the dam broke.
"I don't give a fuck about what you want and don't want right now, Elaina!† You almost died from their ignorance!"
"Fine.† Fine!† You know what?† No, I can't take your soul!† But everyone cling tight to your happiness because the fucking dementor is going to steal it!"
"I...I don't quite seem to understand," James said as he stood up from the foot of a bed where he had taken a seat.
"Yeah.† Yeah, I know," I snapped.† "I know everything you've felt.† That's me, the freaky half-dementor chick that has a sixth sense that allows her to read emotions!† Yes, that's right.† I can tell!† Your guilt, your shock, your horror!† I know it all!" I cried out as my eyes stung with tears.† I let them fall this time and they streaked my cheeks in a hot mess.† "God dammit!"† I brushed them away.† "Yes, I have the taste of a dementor!† I have to eat, in a sense, happy emotions to live!† Dammit!"
I stalked away from them the best I could, taking care not to trip over myself in front of them.†
"Where are you going?" Remus asked.
"I have to piss.† Is that okay with you, Mum?"
"Yeah.† Yeah, I guess it is," he frowned.
I stomped into the bathroom and turned to look at myself in the mirror.† I was wearing a terrible gown given to all the patients in the infirmary.† My eyes were red from my tear of fury and my nose matched.† My skin was blotched and there were circles under my eyes that looked dull.† And, was it just me, or did I look thinner?
And why wasn't I dead?† Yes, I played it off as if it was nothing in front of Remus and the other Marauders but it was irking me.† Not so much the thought of dying...I knew I was always going to have to die at some point and that it was a perfectly natural part of life.† But still.† How could I be alive?† It was practically impossible - no, it was impossible.† And how did I get here in the infirmary from more than half-way across the school in that dank closet?† It was pure insanity.
Answers.† I needed answers.† And Remus was the only one who could give them to me.
I splashed some cold water on my face, hoping to mute the scarlet on my skin.† However, all it really managed to do was drip down my neck and make me shiver.
Returning to the main room, I saw that James, Remus, and Peter had all taken residence on my abandoned bed while Sirius continued to sulk in the background.† Remus, it seemed, was filling them in on everything that I left out in my snappy retort...which I imagine left quite a few gaps for him to patch up.
All eyes fell on me again and James jumped up to wrap a blanket over my shoulders, as if he thought I would catch hypothermia from a little water.† Perhaps he was even thinking that I'd tried to drown myself or something....
"Well, this explains a lot," he laughed nervously.
"Does it?" I asked darkly.† Guilt poured out of the poor bloke.
"You can feel everything?" he gulped.
"Everything," I confirmed.† I knew what he meant.† All those years were haunting him now.† He walked over to the window that peered out over the Quidditch pitch and stared intently through the glass.† Guilt and self hatred.
"So...are you going to tell me how I'm alive or not, Lupin," I said thickly.
"I thought that it didn't matter much to you," he sneered back.† I opened my mouth to snap something back but he took back his words.† "Okay, I didn't mean that.† Sorry.† I just put two and two together, you know?† You said something about needing to feed and dire consequences and, well, I'm not stupid, Elaina."
"I suppose not," I sniffed.† "But that still doesn't explain how I got here or how I was cured."
He blinked.† "Sirius carried you to the infirmary."† I shifted my glance over the dark haired youth in the corner.† He paid us no attention and was still staring moodily.† "As for the other thing, did you know that someone can willingly give their emotions to you?"
I paused.† "No, actually I didn't know that.† But it makes sense, I suppose.† If you think about it."
"Exactly! And I did.† And gave you my emotions...."† A steady flush rose to his cheeks and his ears.
I narrowed my eyes with suspicion.† What precisely did he do to me?† I asked him so.
"I kinda sorta maybe might have kissed you possibly," he stumbled.† He was quite embarrassed.† "Sorry!" he added quickly.
My first kiss taken by Remus Lupin while I was unconscious and on the brink of death.† Most girls didn't have a fourth of that story to go with their first lip lock.
"Well...I can think of worse things," I smiled weakly.† "Ironic though, yeah?"
"If you are referring to the fact that a wizard was kissing a dementor to save it from death, then yes.† Very much so."
"Right.† Well, er, thanks then.† For saving my life and other nonsense."
"Anytime, Elaina.† Except, well, you know, not really."
At that exact moment, there was the soft clicking of a doorknob being turned and gently pushed open.† All eyes were on Dumbledore as he entered the room.† Even Madame Pomfrey came out of her office to take a peek at the new arrival.† He, however, signaled her away with a wave of his hand; she smiled and nodded.
Dumbledore's mouth was a line so thin and frightening that I could almost imagine him and McGonagall going to scowling classes together of the summer to learn proper technique.† Both must have passed with flying colours.
The Headmaster walked over and handed me a second piece of paper - two to be exact.† I glanced down at them reluctantly.† I feared more detention slips but I found train tickets.† For London.
Oh, I see.† Sunday, 29 September 1977.† 8 p.m.
"You know what to do, Miss Marshelle.† I thought that you might be in favour of bringing one of your new companions so there are two for this trip.† Choose wisely.† Stay as long as you must.† We don't want any repeats of this situation."
"Of course, sir.† And, ah, I'm sorry to have caused all this trouble."
"Miss Marshelle," he replied, eyes sparkling with interest. "If I was afraid of trouble I would not be teaching.† Take care.† Have a nice trip."† He turned and left the room just minutes after he had entered it.† Again, all eyes followed after him.
"I'll go."† The voice that broke the silence made me jump.† Sirius hadn't spoken the entire time I'd been awake, save the mumbling under his breath.† "It's my fault, anyway," he continued as he pulled himself away from his own leaning space.† What an odd moment to take on responsibility...but, then again, if there was one thing I had learned in these past few days it had to be that the Marauders had a most ill sense of time.
Honestly, it didn't really bother me that Sirius had been the one to nearly kill me.† It could have been anybody that was in that situation...it just happened to be him that hated me more than the typical person (okay, so maybe that part still bothered me a little).† And especially if they weren't aware of my little secret.† A normal person wouldn't be affected like that - they might simply cry or hit the accuser.† It wasn't him, it truly was me.
And I couldn't say no to† him.† His reason for wanting to go seemed reasonable enough.† There was just going to be some awkward tension between us.† And if he was willing to put up with it, then so was I.† I could be the bigger person here and submit to his wishes.† Not to mention the guilt coming off of him was so severe that I almost felt sorry for the poor guy.† If he hadn't, you know, brought it upon himself.
I nodded to him lightly.
"I'll go pack."
Hey guys!† Hopefully this chapter answers some things for ya.†
This chapter image is some random model that I found and liked for Narcissa.
Please leave a review!
~The Forgotten Muse
EDIT 10-28-10: Yo, guys. Thanks for being so amazing and keeping me going. I did some minor edits to this chapter recently. Just letting you know.
AND, serenade (you might know her from her killer story Trapped.) and I are writing a story together. It's called Miss Marauder and it's under the penname of Lady Marauders. You can find it in my favorites :D
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