Chapter 13 : Dream
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Chapter Thirteen: Dream
“James, you are so stupid!"
“Mate, you’re the one dating a muggle! You should’ve known this would happen sooner or later.”
“Yeah, I should’ve known you’d be a complete and utter moron!”
“I didn’t know she was coming!”
“We should’ve been more careful!”
“It’s not like she’s going to remember anything! Calm down!”
“But what if you permanently brain damaged her? What if she doesn’t wake up?”
“Sirius. It’s okay. It’ll be fine. She’ll be fine.”
My head hurts like an obese elephant is Irish step-dancing on it.
Bloody freakin’ hell.
I open my eyes for a split second but then shut them when the light blinds me. Ugh. I feel like death. Oh, maybe I am dead. I think, trying to remember the last thing that happened to me. Did a train hit me?
I remember climbing over the Potters’ fence . . . and then waking up here. Where is here anyway? Hhhmmm . . . this feels like my bed. The question is: would I be lying in my bed in heaven, or hell? Because I personally think my bed is too comfy to be in hell.
So, heaven then. Brilliant. I’ll go ahead and open my eyes then, so I can meet God. I’ve got a few questions for Him.
Oh, that’s not God. It’s just Sirius. I must be alive then. Unless the train hit Sirius too. Or maybe Sirius is an angel.
“Mellie! Thank Merlin! Are you okay?” Sirius exclaims, far too loudly for the elephant-headache I have. He looks really concerned, and a bit freaked-out. It’s weird; I’ve never seen him like this.
“I’m dandy,” I tell him, although my head still hurts. And I feel a little funny. Like . . . my brain is fuzzy. Yeah . . . fuzzy. Like a bunny.
“Do you remember what happened?” James asks. He’s standing on the other side of me. I wonder how we got in here. I wonder if Mum knows I have two boys in my bedroom.
“Nosireebob,” I tell him, smiling at the way the light reflects off his glasses. It’s pretty.
James and Sirius exchange funny looks. Like they’re relieved. Sirius’s hair looks fuzzy like my brain.
“What’s the last thing you remember happening?” Sirius asks, slowly. It hurts to think.
“Climbing over the fence,” I answer, and then roll onto my side, hugging the pillow to me. I wish I had a blanket over me, but it seems like too much work to pull one up from where they’re tangled at the bottom of my bed. “I’m sleepy.”
“Is she supposed to be sleepy?” I hear Sirius whisper from what must be a great distance away. He sounds worried. I wonder why he’s worried.
“I dunno,” James replies, sounding just as worried. He’s so silly. They’re so silly.
“Mellie? Listen. Are you sure you don’t remember anything happening after that?” Sirius asks in that silly worried voice. I nod. I’m sure. I remember climbing, and then waking up and all the fuzziness. “Do you remember everything that happened before that? What’s your last name?”
“I remember. It’s Parrish. You’re silly,” I inform him, and then shut my eyes so I can be comfier. Comfier. That sounds silly.
“Mellie, I need you to look at me,” Sirius says. I open my eyes and stare into his deep grey ones. They look like storm clouds. “See, after you climbed the fence, you fell. Off of it. And you hit your head,” Sirius explains. I nod, still staring. “And so James and I brought you back here. A doctor came, he said you have a mild conclu—coll—concushion. No, that wasn’t it. Oh, concussion. You have a mild concussion. You’re mum was here too. She said it was okay if we stayed with you. But you’ll be fine. The—er—the doctor said so.”
I feel fine now. The elephant went away.
“Okay,” I say, smiling at his silly worried face. “Okay, Sirius.”
He smiles back at me, the worry fading. “Now, how about you go to sleep?”
Sleep sounds lovely. Absolutely lovely. And fuzzy. Lovely and fuzzy.
“Okay,” I repeat, and then slip into nice, lovely sleep, where silly dreams await me.
I drop off the fence, and turn, putting a very nice “I’m not here to interrogate you” smile on my face. But what I see puts all thoughts of an interrogation out of my mind.
James is standing across the garden, his eyes closed and his legs splayed, using what appears to be a stick as an air-guitar. He’s singing along with a wireless, very loudly and off-key.
“Sure, honey, you can hold me tight!” he sings/screeches. “Just want to keep you safe tonight! Don’t be afraid of all those curses and frights!”
He’s so into the song I don’t say anything to interrupt him, just grin and watch as he swings his arm the way I suppose he thinks guitarists do. It’s very entertaining.
“I’m right here, it’s gonna be alright! Alriiiiiiiight!” he bellows, and then thrusts the arm holding the stick into the air.
And then . . . sparks shoot out of it.
Well that’s a neat trick. I didn’t realize he was holding a firecracker. He spins and then points the stick at Sirius, who, until now, I didn’t notice was sitting on a lawn chair facing away from me, reading a magazine.
The pictures on the front of the magazine are moving.
“And drum solo!” James shouts at Sirius, while drums blast of the wireless. Sirius, engrossed in his magazine, ignores him. “Come on, mate, drum solo!”
“Levicorpus!” James exclaims when Sirius continues to ignore him, while pointing the stick at Sirius. Some light shoots out of it, another neat trick.
It seems as though an invisible hand plucks Sirius off the lawn chair by his ankle and dangles him in the air, a foot or so off the ground.
Bloody hell. That’s not just a trick.
“Prongs!” Sirius, irritated, shouts. “Let me down!”
I’m frantically looking for some sort of string or harness or rope or a jet pack or some explanation for why Sirius is now floating upside down.
“You wouldn’t do the drum solo,” James replies, dancing out of reach of Sirius’s frantically waving arms. “We both know the drum solo is always your job.”
“Hand me my wand and there will definitely be some drumming,” Sirius threatens.
If I was still eleven years old and going through my fairytale-obsessed phase, I’d probably think that Sirius is being held up not by wires and a harness, but by magic.
No. No. It’s not magic. It can’t be. Magic isn’t real. This isn’t real. There’s a perfectly logical explanation for what I’m seeing right now.
I seem to take in all the details at once, in an oddly detached way, as if I can’t really process what’s going on so I’m just taking it in.
There’s a wireless playing on a patio table near the two boys, still playing the song James was jamming to, turned up loudly, which must’ve been why they couldn’t hear me. Mrs. Potter’s garden looks nice, with the nicely-pruned row of shrubs and the brightly-colored flowers sprouting alongside them. James is busy cracking up at Sirius’s angry expression. They’re two teenage boys having fun. The sun beats down on a picturesque garden and I feel like I might faint.
“Sure, honey, you can hold me tight,” James begins to sing along with the wireless again, now sounding even worse because he’s holding back laughter. Sirius is still dangling in the air. What’s holding him up?! After James butchers another verse or so, with me standing frozen, the song is over and he starts to take his bows.
“That was the Screaming Hags’ new hit, ‘I’ll Be Your Auror’,” a voice from the wireless announces. “Next up is Judy and the Witches, with ‘I’m Not Your Banshee, Baby’.”
“I hate that song,” James proclaims, completing his bows and turning the wireless off. Then he turns. And sees me. And his mouth drops open. And he lets loose a string of f-bombs.
At this Sirius turns as much as he can, still being upside down, and seeing me, freezes. His expression is shocked, guilty, horrified, and stunned, all at once.
“James, your singing is really awful,” is the only thing I can think to say.
There’s a horrible pause, a pause that’s completely empty and at the same time full of things: shock, amazement, awfulness.
“Stupefy,” James says shakily after what could be seconds or years.
Red light flashes out of his wand, towards me.
Then the dream shifts and everything is purple.
James and Sirius are arguing. I’m sitting on a patio chair, listening to them fight about what to do. I think I might’ve screamed at some point, because my voice feels scratchy like it does after a good scream, but I don’t remember screaming. An emu runs across the garden, and I know I must be dreaming but it feels real. Even if everything is purple, even my own skin. My skin, the sky, Sirius’s anxious face and James’s angry face.
James keeps shouting about how he’s not sure if he can do a memory charm correctly, and Sirius is shouting about how he’s too nervous to do it himself and I’m just sitting here.
I’m dreaming. Sirius and James are waving wands around. I’m dreaming.
I wake up, feeling more exhausted than when I fell asleep. The first thing I realize is that James and Sirius aren’t by my bed anymore. The second thing is that I just had once of the strangest dreams of my life.
Not strange because of the content. I’ve had dreams much more insane than that. The one where I was being chased by a giant beetle carrying an axe who was seeking revenge for me killing his beloved father had some pretty weird content.
It was strange because of how real—but at the same time, not real—it was. It wasn’t like in most dreams when I don’t really question the odd things that are happening, I just accept them with dream logic, and only later, when I wake up, do I question them. This time, I questioned what was happening when it was happening. And even though it could never, ever happen . . . it felt so real.
Sirius and James, wizards. No. It’s not possible. My life is not some kid’s fairytale where I discover magic exists and I’m a fairy and my boyfriend’s a warlock. No. That doesn’t happen in real life.
It just happens in really, really oddly realistic dreams, apparently.
It’s also a weird dream because of how it picked up just when I blacked out before. I mean, I remember clearly going over the fence, and I remember blacking out and waking up to Sirius and James. But everything in between is now perfectly filled in by that dream.
Ugh! Why can’t I just have a normal day! All I wanted to do yesterday was talk to Sirius about his potential paramour and I end up falling and hitting my head and having weird dreams! I fling myself out of bed, barely noting that I’m still wearing the clothes I wore yesterday to see Sirius (the clothes I was wearing in my dream). I go downstairs, ignoring my mother as she calls good morning to me from her office, and head straight to the kitchen phone.
Before I’m even sure what number I’m dialing, my hands are punching buttons of their own accord, and then it’s just a matter of seconds until I hear the voice I need to reassure me that everything is alright.
Sirius. His phone voice is almost just like his in-person voice, only slightly deeper. I smile at the sound of it, sinking against the counter onto the floor.
“It’s Mellie,” I reply.
“How are you feeling?” he asks hurriedly. “Does your head hurt? Do you remember your name? Your address? Your birthday?”
I have to laugh. The oh-so-normal sound of him is already pushing away the odd dream. “I’m peachy. Remember everything, except for, you know, blacking out.”
I decide, without really deciding, not to tell him about the dream.
“Good,” he answers, the relief in his voice warming me like a caress.
“I can’t believe I fell,” I say, smiling. “I’m so clumsy. A danger to myself and others.”
Sirius laughs. I ignore how it seems to sound forced. It’s not the usual bark of his laugh.
“Yeah. A menace to society,” he replies teasingly.
I decide I want to see him in person. No, more like I need to see him in person. I need to see him so I can prove to myself my dream was just a crazy, random dream. I stand up and stretch the phone’s cord over to the calendar so I can see Mum’s schedule.
“You know,” I say in what I hope is a seductive voice, but probably just sounds ridiculous. “In about ten minutes, my mum leaves to deal with the nutters and she’ll be gone until like six. So will my dad. Do you want to come over?”
“Hhhmmm, I’d have to check my calendar,” Sirius says, and I can tell he’s grinning. “Oh, lucky me, I’m free.”
“Well there’s a relief,” I joke. “I know how busy you are.”
He laughs, and it’s more real this time, less forced. “I would love to come over,” he says sincerely.
“Good. I’ll call you as soon as Mum leaves,” I say, already excited to see him. I pause, about to say good bye, but then I change my mind—or lose it, not sure which.
Oh bloody hell. Could I sound any more insecure? And that is not at all casual like I planned! Why does my mouth refuse to cooperate with my brain? Why?
“What?” exclaims Sirius, sounding completely surprised. “No. Why on Earth would I do that?”
Because you’re hiding something from me. I know it.
“No—it’s just, I had this feeling . . . like you weren’t telling me something . . . and I just thought I’d ask. About, the, you know, hiding. Things. From me. And Remus put the idea in my head!” I say. Hell. Smooth, Mellie, smooth.
“Remus wha—” Sirius replies, sounding confused now. “Oh bloody hell. No, Mellie, I am not cheating on you. And I will prove just how much I am not cheating on you by snogging you senseless when I come over.”
I giggle, but the weird feeling isn’t going away.
Maybe with a few hours of snogging, it will. I tell Sirius good bye and then go upstairs to hurry my mum out the door. When I lean against her office doorway she looks up from her desk and smiles.
“Good morning, Melanie, how are you?” she asks while putting some papers away. Good, she’s already dressed for work.
“Okay,” I reply, and then add, in case she was worried, “my head feels fine now.”
Mum pauses from sorting her session notes to look up at me, confused. “Your head?”
Sometimes before she’s had her morning coffee my mother is extremely slow.
“Yeah, you remember yesterday how I fell. It doesn’t hurt now,” I explain, barely refraining from rolling my eyes at her. Her expression changes from confused to concerned.
“You hurt your head, Melanie?” she asks, raising her eyebrows. “You sure fall quite a bit. You really need to be more careful.”
This time I do roll my eyes. I don’t fall that often. “Thanks for the advice, Mum. Next time I feel like falling, I’ll resist the urge,” I tell her sarcastically. She shakes her head at me before snapping her briefcase shut.
“I’m just saying, head injuries have to be taken seriously,” she says, and then walks over and gives me a little shoulder pat, the kind I hate. “I’m on my way to work; I’ll be back around six.”
I roll my eyes again and follow her down the stairs. When Mum heads towards the garage door, I stop her.
“Wait, don’t you need your morning coffee?” I ask her, about to head into the kitchen to get it. She shakes her head.
“Already had it. Bye, Melanie!” she replies and then leaves.
Huh. I guess lack of coffee wasn’t why she was being so slow. She must’ve just been distracted by work.
Anyway, Sirius time!
After ringing him, then running back upstairs because I belatedly remembered I just got out of bed and have horrible bed-head and morning-breath, I quickly change clothes and then rush back downstairs just in time to get the door.
Just seeing Sirius makes me smile. He looks completely normal (not dangling upside down) and happy to see me. He barely has time to shut the door behind him before I’m kissing him.
Kissing Sirius has got to be number one on my list of favorite activities. It’s really, really nice.
And it has great distraction properties. When I’m kissing him, I’m not thinking of anything at all, especially not weird dreams and how he might be hiding something. It’s lovely.
My legs wrap around Sirius’s waist as he attempts to maneuver us over to the sofa. But the sofa is all the way in the living room and since I don’t feel like removing my lips from his to make getting there any easier we bump into the wall a few times. We collapse onto the sofa, the very same sofa I’ve fallen asleep under numerous times, and continue to snog.
“Mellie?” Sirius murmurs after a bit. I decide to pretend I don’t hear him. “Mellie.”
Ugh. Stop talking. Talking requires thinking and I don’t feel like thinking because thinking leads to me thinking of a certain dream and badness. I would much rather think of the way Sirius’s exceptionally fit body is pressing me into the sofa cushions, and the way his hands feel roaming from my face through my hair to my back.
But alas, he pulls away, scooting his weight off me to lean back against the sofa. I don’t move, hoping he’ll take the hint and forget about talking.
“Mellie, as much as I enjoy kissing you, I also enjoy breathing,” he jokes, and I stick my tongue out at him. “Plus we need to talk about why you think I’m cheating on you.”
I groan and flip onto my stomach, so my legs are on his lap and my face buried in sofa. Sirius prods my side.
“I’m assuming that means you don’t want to talk about it,” he sounding partially serious, partially like he’s mimicking a shrink. “But we’re gonna. Avoidance isn’t healthy.”
Avoidance is how I survive in this world.
“Did you nick one of my mum’s shrinky books?” I accuse, tilting my head a little so my words don’t come out completely muffled.
“I might’ve borrowed a couple without asking,” he replies, and I can tell he’s smirking. “I was curious. Anyway, why’d you think I’m cheating on you?”
I feel stupid saying it out loud. Because although I just feel like he’s hiding something, I don’t have any concrete evidence of it. I don’t remember a specific incident, I just have this feeling.
Wait a second. I do have evidence. A whole notebook full of it.
But I can’t just show him the notebook. The notebook will make me seem creepy and stalkerish. I mean, yes, he’s already seen it, but hopefully he’s forgotten about it. No one wants a stalker for a girlfriend.
I heave out a huge, dramatic sigh, that only makes Sirius chuckle. So I kick him in the face.
“Bloody hell!” he exclaims and now it’s my turn to chuckle. Although laughing at my boyfriend’s pain is probably not a good thing. Probably a sign of bad mental health. And stalker-ness. “Okay, that’s it.”
With that, Sirius flips me around so I’m lying on my back, resting in his lap, and wondering what exactly that evil smirk he has means. He’s got one hand clamped around my wrists, and the other resting on my feet. What is he . . . oh hell.
“If you don’t stop this avoidance thing right now, I will tickle your feet. Mercilessly,” he threatens, with a smirk that says he’s clearly enjoying himself. I for one am regretting not showering and shaving this morning before he came over because my legs are all prickly and now he’s going to feel the gross stubble.
“I’m not avoid—” I start to say, but Sirius just shakes his head and begins the torture.
Why, oh why, did I tell him the only place I was ticklish was the bottom of my feet? Why? I guess because he was being absolutely adorable at the time and not threatening to use torture to get me to talk.
“Sirius!” I manage to get out between the uncontrollable giggles. I try to get free but he’s holding my wrists so I can’t shove him and it’s hard to kick him when the feet I normally use for kicking are being tickled ruthlessly. “St-stop it! I can’t breathe!”
“I’ll stop when you start talking,” he says, smirking and clearly enjoying himself. The prat. I refuse to give in to his demands. I’ll stay strong and never cave! I have an iron will! I’ll be as stubborn as a mule! I’ll—bloody hell.
“I think you’re cheating on me because I feel like you’re hiding something from me because it feels like you stop yourself when you’re talking a lot and change what you’re going to say and sometimes you just do really weird things and I dunno!” I exclaim, and then take a few deep breaths because Sirius has finally stopped tickling me and now that the giggles have stopped I can breathe normally.
Damn. So much for my iron will. I roll back over and shove my face into the couch cushions because I can’t look Sirius in the eye right now.
I hear him groan. I have no sympathy for him. He asked for it. He actually used torture to make me talk so he has no right to groan now that I have. The super prat.
"Mellie, I would never cheat on you. I mean, we had the boyfriend/girlfriend being exclusive talk last week and once I have that talk with a girl I never ever cheat on them. Unless you count that one time, but I don't, since it was revenge for her cheating first. Plus I was a fifth year and a prat," he says.
"And you think you've grown out of being a prat?" I can't resist sarcastically asking.
"What was that? I couldn't hear you with your face pressed against the cushions like the big avoider you are," Sirius replies. I don't respond, since I know he heard me and he's unfortunately right about the avoiding thing.
"Anyway," he continues. "The reason it seems like I'm, er, hiding something from you is . . . well . . ." he trails off, and I pull my face from the pillows so I can look at him. He's running his hands through his hair and looks frustrated. I'm trying to figure out of that's a good thing or a bad thing.
"It's just, some things I just can't tell you and, um, I wish I could but I'd be breaking some law I think. Shoot, I mean, not breaking any laws, it's nothing serious, but I shouldn't tell you anyway 'cause it's not my place to tell and . . ."
He looks highly uncomfortable now. Which makes me think he's actually being honest, but at the same time makes me very nervous because if whatever he's trying to say makes him uncomfortable, it's bound to make me uncomfortable. Also, it's just weird seeing Sirius uncomfortable. Really weird.
"And it'd probably be dangerous if you knew, and the last thing I want to do is put you in danger but I probably already have and now I'm freaking you out and I dunno what to say but I really, really, really like you Mellie and--"
I decide to take pity on him. So I shut him up with a kiss. He pulls me close but this time I'm the one to pull away.
"So, is this one of those, 'I'd tell you but then I'd have to kill you' kind of things?" I ask, giving him a smile I hope puts him at ease. Because the uncomfortable look on him is freaking me the heck out.
"Er . . . "
Okay, I was joking, but the look on Sirius's face says I hit the nail on the head.
I knew it! Sirius is a super spy! I mean, he definitely has the whole super-fit-spy-charm thing going on. Just look at his smile! I bet if when he wears a pair of sunglasses he looks exactly like some exceptionally posh spy.
But if he's a super spy, a James Bond-esque spy, then I am clearly not cool enough to be his girlfriend. Or sexy enough. And my name is far too boring. Melanie Parrish is NOT a Bond girl name. Maybe the Melanie part, but not Parrish, which puts you in mind of church. And church is not sexy. I'll have to change my last name then. Something French, maybe. Like . . . Lalonde. Yes, Melanie Lalonde has a nice, spy-ish ring to it.
Or he's a secret agent. Wait, is there a difference between a spy and a secret agent?
Anyway, I need to react correctly. I mean, the girlfriend of a secret agent has to be supportive, even if she doesn't get to know everything that goes on in her hot boyfriend's life. Sexy and supportive. That's me.
Oh, and cool. Don't forget cool.
"It's okay, Sirius. You don't have to tell me whatever it is you apparently can't tell me, I understand," I say, in what I hope is a supportive, sexy, cool tone.
But it seems that I haven't quite yet mastered that tone, because Sirius looks at me like I'm ill.
"Do you have something stuck in your throat?"
"Erm, no," I say, dropping the supportive, sexy, cool tone. "Anyway, It's okay if you don't tell me everything. But you should know that you can. Tell me anything, I mean."
Sirius gives me a smile. One of those smiles that somehow manages to make me feel all warm and floaty and happy. One of those smiles that tells me everything is going to be okay. For now, at least.
I no longer think Sirius is cheating on me. However, there's definitely something he's not telling me. I guess I'll just have to just wait for him to spill the beans. But in the mean time . . .
I give him a long, slow kiss as he pulls me into his lap.
"You're the best girlfriend ever, you know that?" he says, and I grin at him.
I'd be even better if I had a sexier last name.
"Oh shut up and snog me," I reply, and then lean in to continue what has to be one of my favorite activities.
A/N: This was a surprisingly difficult chapter to write, and one I never intended to write. So I really hoped you liked it. Also, who's seen Crazy Stupid Love? Because the model that's Mellie in the banner and chapter image, is in it! Annaleigh Tipton. I saw it and went "Woah, there's Mellie!" Anyway, I'll try and make updates more often, but no promises, because I'm a college girl now, and therefore mucho busy. And I can't exactly turn a fanfiction in to my creative writing class.
I'd just like to thank all my reviewers and readers, everyone who's still reading this after about a year of me posting chapters with super long gaps in between. You all rock, and y
our reviews make my day!
One more thing . . . Dobby nominations, anyone?