Chapter 1 : The Damage Done
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The Damage Done
Laura’s favourite part of the day was just after dinner and the dishes have been done, and the hot summer sun begins to sink in the sky. She and her twin sister would go for a walk through the wheat fields and talk. Sometimes they didn’t say anything and sometimes they could hardly shut up long enough to hear each other. Every day, since they were twelve years old during the summer this is what they did. It’s how they made it up to each other, how they would compensate for the nine months they were apart.
“Do you even know what you’re going to do after this year? Because I don’t. I know mum and dad want me to go to University, I mean that’s what I’ve planned to do for years, but I don’t even know what I want to study.” Leah, her sister frowned.
“Study history,” Laura suggested. “Or study music – you’re a really good singer and you play guitar. Study music.” She prompted, deflecting Leah’s original question. Although she knew pretty much everything about the magical world, she didn’t quite understand based on the fact she had never really seen it first-hand. How was Laura going to explain to her sister her occupational options?
She laughed. “That is just for fun, I couldn’t do it seriously. I mean, I would love to but I have nothing to say. I haven’t really lived enough to.”
“Maybe that’s what you should do, live. Take a year off, travel, live a little.” Laura told her.
“What about you? Don’t think I didn’t notice that little deflection.” She nudged Laura in the arm.
“And don’t try to dumb it down, I want to know what my baby sister is going to do with her life.”
“We’re the same age.” Laura reminded.
“I’m five minutes older, and you act like the baby so let’s not start this argument.” Leah smirked.
“I don’t know... I could be a Healer.” Laura said half-heartedly. She didn’t really have any interest in being a Magical doctor.
“A doctor? Really?” Leah cocked an eyebrow at her sister.
“Okay, no, not really. I just... that’s what I told my Professor Longbottom in fifth year. You have this meeting and they ask you what you want to do. I said I wanted to be a Healer because I didn’t really know anything else. All the jobs you have to be really good at something. Healer, Auror, writer, teacher? I’m not any of those things. I get average grades in every subject. They are so average that I pretty much had no idea what to go into a career for because there is nothing standing out as the best option. Even my Head of House thought so. She just asked me point blank what subject do I like best, and I shrugged. I have to be the worst Witch ever.” Laura said, defeated.
“That can’t be true. You just said you got average grades. What do you get? B’s, that’s okay, that’s what I get at school. Average doesn’t mean you aren’t intelligent enough, it just means that school is something you’ve adapted to but-”
“Leah, it’s okay. I don’t need you to build me up. By the end of the year I’ll have it figured out.”
Laura assured her. It was sweet, she was doing what she always does when Laura beat herself up. But it never really works, Laura never feels more confident. Perhaps more confident in their relationship considering for a long time it was strained and competitive. They were always trying to out-due each other, show who was the better, smarter, cooler, nicer, meaner, prettier sister. They were twins, they’ve been compared their whole lives.
“Who knows you could be a singer with me.” Leah grinned.
“Shut up, we both know you’re the better singer. No use rubbing it in my face.”
“That’s because you went off to school and stopped singing. If you sang more you’d be just as good, we both know that.” There she went, building Laura up again. And before she knew it Leah began singing their favourite traditional, Red is the Rose. Joining in, they lavished in their perfectly harmonized voices, something learned from the many years they had sung together. Laura would only sing with her sister for this reason.
As they walked down the long dirt road through the wheat fields their father planted every year, Laura stared into the setting sun’s light, squinting as she did so and enjoyed it’s warmth before it disappeared. Her sister skipped ahead in the dirt, her dark straight brunette hair trailing behind her. Following her lead, Laura began to skip after her sister, her curly brown hair whipping her face as she ran. The only difference in their appearance was their hair, and yet Samantha felt it set them completely apart.
“Slow down!” Laura yelled as her sister ran ahead. Picking up her pace to keep up, Leah turned to look at her and laugh. “I hate you!” Laura shouted, and watched as her sister laughed. Then, as Leah turned around to keep running she stopped. She was on her feet for a second and then she landed on the ground hard. Dust rose up around her, and Laura raced to see if her sister was okay. “Leah! Leah! Are you okay? What happened?”
Laura skidded next to her sister and knelt down next to her. Rolling Leah on to her back Laura shook her madly. Her eyes were open but didn’t seem to register anything, something was missing. She wasn’t there.
“Leah!” Laura screamed, becoming frantic. “Leah wake up! Wake up!”
With a start Albus sat up in bed. He was sweating, and his entire body ached. At once he regretted sitting up so quickly as a wave of nausea hit him. Someone had placed a rubbish bin next to his bed and he grabbed it just in time to retch. His heart pounding, his throat rough he put the bin down and took a sip of water from the glass next to his bed. That had to have been his father. Rubbing is jaw that was sore, he put the glass back. Lying back down, Albus pushed the heavy blankets off his body. He was shaking, and once again he took a sip of his water. Putting his fingers to his neck he felt his pulse, almost as if his heart was in his throat. He couldn’t remember ever feeling this hung-over before and he regretted the last fire whiskey shot of the night.
“You alright mate?” Albus became aware that his best mate, Scorpius Malfoy was also in his room, most likely on a cot. “I bet you’re regretting that last fire whiskey.” He chuckled from somewhere in the darkness.
Gripping his wand tightly, Albus shut his eyes and whispered, “Lumos.”
Through his eyelids he could see the light of his wand fill the room, and shielding his eyes he prepared for the intensity. He could hardly open his eyes, wincing as the light hurt his head.
“It’s not even six in the morning, go back to bed.” Scorpius grumbled.
Testing the light again, Albus succeeded this time at opening his eyes. Looking at Scorpius with blurry eyes (he couldn’t see his glasses anywhere) he let the first question in his mind slip out. “What the hell happened? I don’t remember anything after my fifth drink.”
“Exactly,” Scorpius sniggered.
“Git,” Albus grumbled, and Scorpius rolled over to face him.
“You had another drink, danced like a moron, tried to snog with Charlotte Wood – which is why your jaw is probably sore right now. She punches pretty hard. Then you spent most of the evening drinking more and hiding from Lewis who wanted you dead for hitting on his sister. I found you by the pond with half a bottle of fire whiskey mumbling about how much you loved me, and then proceeded to hug everyone and tell them you loved them until your dad helped me get you into your bed. All in all you did a superb job of embarrassing yourself.” Scorpius summarized.
“What a shit birthday.” Albus sat back in bed, and wiped the sweat off his forehead. Cold now he pulled the covers back over him.
“Best seventeenth birthday I’ve ever been to.”
“I drank more than James.”
“I wasn’t aware that it was a contest.”
“You don’t have brother’s.”
“Thank Merlin because I would not want to be you. Your mother is going to kill you tomorrow.”
“I think I’m going to be sick.”
“Well can you do it quietly? I’m trying to sleep.”
Albus heaved once more into the bin, and drank some more water. Rubbing his jaw, he curled into a pull and waved his wand. The light went out, and he looked out the window. The sky was a dark grey, and the sun would be rising into the sky soon. Trying hard to remember the night before he couldn’t remember a single thing. He remembered greeting his family and friends. His cousins and all of their friends had been invited, and there had been a Quidditch match before everyone got too intoxicated. The last thing he remembered was having a drink Charlotte Wood, and he guessed it was shortly after that when he tried snogging her.
It was just after noon when Albus woke up again. Scorpius was gone, probably with Rose laughing about his stupidity from the night before. It was all he could do to get out of bed and make it into the shower. Leaning against the cold tile, he closed his eyes. He felt like such a crap. What a waste of a birthday.
“Oh Al, darling!” James burst into the loo, and Albus cringed at the booming voice of his brother.
“Go away,” Albus.
“Oh I certainly will but after I let you know, mum says to hurry up she needs to talk to you.” James couldn’t hide the excitement from his voice. Nothing made him happier than watching his brother getting in trouble from their mother.
“Don’t worry Alby, I’m sure she won’t rough you up too much.”
“Shut up please,” Albus groaned rubbing his temples. Standing directly under the water he couldn’t hear the last words his brother said before leaving the loo. Albus could already hear in his head the voice of his mother. Nothing scared him more than his mother’s wrath. He never wanted to leave the comfort of his shower. But as he felt his fingers and toes prune he stepped out.
After dressing and drinking more water Albus began to feel a little better. His stomach continued to spin but if he could sneak into his mother’s potions before she reamed him out he could fix that and be in the best shape to face his mother. Sneaking downstairs was the hardest part as he had to skip the squeaky steps on his way to the kitchen. It was all in vain anyway, as Albus went to sneak into the kitchen he found his mother, hands on hip waiting for him.
“Morning mum,” he swallowed hard.
It was almost like her lips hadn’t moved. Albus did as he was told. “You look lovely this morn-”
“Albus Potter don’t try to sweet talk your way out of this. What were you thinking getting drunk last night? Your entire family was at that party! Thank goodness for Scorpius, he managed to get you to stop drinking and get you inside before you caused anymore damage to your liver! Do you want to tell me what you were thinking Albus Severus Potter?”
“Uhhh,” Albus suddenly felt like he was nine again getting scolded for setting his brother’s hair on fire when he made fun of him for needing glasses.
“You better start talking soon Mr. Potter-”
“Really mum? ‘Mr. Potter’ – that’s what they call dad.” Albus complained.
“Well since you seem incapable of giving me an answer you can go start de-gnoming the garden.” Mrs. Potter was a force to be reckoned with, and after shoving a piece of toast down his throat and some tea he begrudgingly went out into the back garden and frowned at the sight of all the gnomes running for cover at the sight of him.
“If it isn’t Albus the alcoholic.” Said a flowery voice.
“Don’t you have someone else to annoy, Lily?” Albus grumbled when he saw his sister. She was holding James’ broom, and looked all sweaty. “Practising again?”
“Yeah, since Lewis Wood graduated they need a new keeper.” Lily shifted uncomfortably.
“You should get James to help you practise,” Albus suggested.
“I would but, you know...” Lily shrugged.
“You want to do it on your own.” Albus said, reading her mind.
“Exactly,” Lily laughed. “So, you want some help?”
Albus looked at the garden, and spotted an evil looking gnome hiding behind his mother’s flutterby bush. “Nah, this will be good for me. You know, teach me my lesson not to drink so much.”
Lily laughed. “Wait until dad gets home, he’ll save you.”
Albus smiled, but felt too sick to his stomach to say anything more. A wave of nausea hit him, and he had to lean over so he wouldn’t keel over.
“Whoa, did mum not give you anything?” Lily put James’ broom down and went over to see if Albus was okay.
“I think she wanted me to feel the full pain.” Albus tried to laugh but he felt too sick to do so.
“I’ll be right back.” Lily disappeared and Albus heard the back door slam. A few minutes later Lily reappeared with a bottle of Grandma Weasley’s Hung-over cure – a brew their great-great grandmother had concocted and cured the drinker of hangover symptoms within minutes after drinking. Albus took it greedily from his sister and uncorked the bottle. Drinking a more than necessary amount, Albus handed the vial to Lily and grinned. “Better?” she asked.
“I feel all new and shiny.”
“You’re so odd,” Lily laughed. Picking up James’ broom she turned to the house. “Have fun de-gnoming the garden.”
Two hours, and seven gnomes later Albus decided it was time to go cool off. Walking down the path towards the forest where the pond was, he was happy to see that Scorpius and Rose were there. Rose was reading a book – typical – while Scorpius seemed to be trying to catch fish with his wand. When they heard him walking down the path both Rose and Scorpius stopped what they were doing and waited for him to join them.
“Please don’t start,” Albus told Rose warningly. She had a big grin on her face and poked Albus in the side playfully.
“You look pretty alive for someone who drank three quarters of a fire whiskey bottle.” Rose teased.
“Scorpius said I only drank half a bottle!” Albus looked to his mate, surprised.
Scorpius shrugged. “You had only drank half, you got some more in you by time you got to bed. Your father had to practically hold you down while I pulled the bottle out of your head. As your best mate, I should really tell you that you’re not allowed to drink anymore.”
“I wonder how long I’m going to have to live this one down.” Albus said, taking a seat next to Rose on the blanket she was sitting on. Scorpius took his other side. “Can you believe we start school tomorrow?”
“Can you believe my mother hasn’t swooped in and taken me home yet?” Scorpius said, looking at his watch.
“You’re sister is probably pre-occupying her.” Rose said passively.
“Very likely, Andromeda has been a brat lately.” Scorpius agreed, speaking of his nine year old sister.
“Lately?” Rose laughed.
“You two seemed to have missed my point.” Albus looked at his mate and cousin. “We start Seventh year tomorrow, our last year at Hogwarts. It feels like we just finished first year.”
“Stop being so nostalgic. It’s sad.” Rose nudged her cousin.
“I saw Lily practising – does James know?” Scorpius asked.
“No... maybe. I don’t know, it’s James he probably won’t think it’s real until she writes to him that she got onto the team.” Albus shrugged.
“Will she get on?” Scorpius asked.
“Of course she will, she just never wanted to try-out as James’ little sister. I’d say she’s as good, if not better than Lewis.” Rose concluded.
“You don’t even know anything about Quidditch,” Scorpius laughed.
“I grew up in a crazy Quidditch loving family, and everyone besides my mother talks and plays Quidditch – I am the smartest witch in our year! Do you really think I know absolutely nothing about Quidditch? Really Scorpio?” Rose narrowed her eyes
Scorpius cringed at the nickname, and Albus prepared himself for another epic fight between his two best friends. Before they could even begin he stood up quickly and walked over to the pond. He could see fish bathing in the dwindling sunshine and the Grindylow’s were hiding in the weeds. The pond was fairly large for a pond, about three kilometres round but was almost eight feet deep in the centre. It was mostly sand, except near the middle where it was thick with weeds and the Grindylow’s lived. They had a Kelpie once living in the pond back when Albus and his siblings had been young. They didn’t know about it until it appeared one day by the pond. James was eleven, and he was almost ten and they wouldn’t let Lily play Quidditch with them because she was eight and small for her age. She got upset and ran to the pond where the Kelpie was in its horse form.
Albus could still hear his sister’s scream in his head when he thought about it. James and Albus had stopped playing Quidditch and flew straight to the pond where they saw the Kelpie dragging her into the water. Together they raced into the water to save her, screaming and yelling. In the water they fought the Kelpie, but it had been hard. Albus felt helpless pulling on his sisters arm as James kicked and fought the Kelpie screaming for help. Albus wouldn’t let go of Lily even when James went up to get air. Albus was feeling faint, he had needed air but his sister felt limp in his hand and he couldn’t let go.
Their parents had heard their screams and rushed to the lake. Albus was pulled away from Lily, and suddenly he was in the arms of his mother, gasping for air. There was a flash of light, but his mother’s grip was so tight on him that he couldn’t see where Lily was. He tried fighting his mother but she wouldn’t let go, and once they were on shore they sat on the ground watching as his father reappeared holding Lily in his arms. James was standing in the water, and rushed over to their father asking if Lily was okay repeatedly. His mother was shaking and Albus started to cry. She wasn’t moving, and his father laid her in the wet grass. She was blue. James tried to shake her awake, but their mother pulled him close and he started to cry. Albus and James watched as their father, Harry Potter, did everything he could and after performing a spell their sister coughed and was alive. Finally their mother let go of Albus and James and they crawled towards their sister hugging her.
“Albus stop being weird,” Scorpius shouted from the grass where he was now lying down. Rose was smirking, she was reading again.
“I’m not being weird.” Albus smiled and went back over to where they were sitting. The sun was starting to set, and Albus wondered where the day had gone. Probably because he had slept through most of it.
“He is always weird, you know that.” Rose teased.
“Thanks Rose, you’re so supportive.”
“Glad to have helped.” Rose laughed again, and stood up. “Come on, let’s go inside before your mum yells for us. Dinner should be ready.”
“Yes Ma’am,” Scorpius saluted Rose and followed her lead.
Albus gave a small laugh, and watched as his friend started walking up the path. Rose said something to Scorpius and Albus assumed she was probably teasing him. It would only be a matter of months before the two of them started dating, Albus was waiting for it. It was in sixth year when Albus started hanging out with Scorpius. Rose had been paired with Scorpius in potions, and once they became friends Albus had started talking to him to. He quickly came to realize that he and Scorpius had a lot in common.
“Albus stop being weird!” Rose yelled this time. She and Scorpius were both standing at the end of the path looking at him with an odd look. Albus nodded and hurried after them. One day he wouldn’t be weird, he hoped.
A/N: It's been a long time since I wrote anything. Almost two years. And although I have a bunch of stories waiting to be re-written and posted I feel like I've out grown them in away. This wasn't necessarily the story I want to write but at the moment it's the best I can do. Please leave a review and let me know if this story is a little too dark and boring. Thanks!