Chapter 18 : Life advice from Fred.
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She didn’t watch him leave the garden, choosing instead to turn around and storm back into the house, wiping her eyes furiously as she neared the door. She willed herself to hold back her tears but she was failing miserably.
She wrenched open the door and entered the room, quickly realising that someone new was in the room to see her tear filled face. Mariah Hayes was Albus’s girlfriend and had been since their sixth year, how anyone could manage to stay with Albus confused Amelia to no end, she could barely sit next to him at dinner.
Mariah had obviously arrived whilst Amelia was outside with James, as her bags were by her seat, which would mean that Albus didn’t know she was here yet; Albus had told them all previously that Mariah was arriving late due to her work commitments.
Amelia tried to rush past them ignoring the looks that Fred, Lucy, Roxanne and Mariah were shooting her, noticing vaguely that everyone else had left the room. She walked across the room as Fred began walking towards her.
“Amelia... are you ok?” he asked. She barely stopped walking as she answered him.
“I’m fine!” she said shortly through gritted teeth.
“Where’s James?” Fred faltered, noticing that she was crying.
“I don’t care,” she cried managing to leave the room before more tears fell.
Fred gave the others a confused look before he ran out of the house and after James. The girls all stood up and rushed after Amelia, after shooting each other silent looks. But by the time that they had reached the room that James and Amelia had been sharing, Amelia had already entered and had locked the door behind her.
“Amelia,” Lucy said as she knocked on the door. Amelia didn’t reply.
Lucy knocked again, when she didn’t get any answer she looked at Roxanne and Mariah, who Roxanne had filled in with everything that had happened earlier down in the kitchen, Fred and Lucy had stayed silent through that conversation.
“What do you think happened between them?” Mariah asked them in a low voice. Lucy let out a quick shrug, trying to make it sound like she had no clue.
“I don’t know either,” Roxanne said also quietly, looking at the door quickly before turning back to the others, nodding down the hall telling them to walk down there so they could talk a bit louder. After they had moved she spoke again, “I’m not sure if any of you have noticed but they do seem to be acting a bit strange.”
She looked back up the corridor before she continued. “They’re not as affectionate as they used to be, they used to hardly be able to keep their hands off of each other and now it’s like they don’t go near each other.”
“From what Albus has told me in his letters they don’t seem as happy as they used to be,” Mariah said.
“Now if Albus has noticed, something big has got to be happening,” Roxanne said with a laugh. Mariah smiled as she nodded her agreement.
“Although maybe they’re both just tired? I know she’s been really stressed because of work, she’s doing all of the hours under the sun,” Lucy stated trying to get the others to just think that this was down to stress. “And James can’t have been much help at all acting like... well James. We all know what he’s like!”
The others all nodded their agreement.
“He can be annoying,” Mariah stated, folding her arms over her chest as she looked at the others.
Roxanne scoffed. “Understatement of the century.”
“I bet it’s just that though,” Lucy continued. “I mean look at how they were the other day when we were at the pub, and that time when we cooked lunch. It’s just a fight, I’m telling you. Maybe the whole getting remarried was meant to be a secret and they were going to surprise us, and Amelia just got annoyed that he told early.”
Mariah and Roxanne nodded at what she said. “That must be it. I hope they sort this argument out soon,” Mariah stated.
“Me too. Do you want to go find Lily? She said that she wants help getting Hugo a date, and with Hugo she’s going to need all of the help she can get,” Roxanne stated, Mariah laughed loudly.
“I’ll meet you down there,” Lucy told them as Roxanne and Mariah began descending down the stairs, they stopped to turn and look at Lucy. “I’m going to try and get her to talk to me, and if she won’t I’ll just unlock the door with Alohamora.”
“Why didn’t we think of that?” Mariah cried throwing her arms in the air.
“Because you’re both stupid,” Lucy said with a smile at them as she turned around and walked back to Amelia and James’s room.
Lucy knocked on the door. “Amelia it’s me, let me in.”
Amelia wiped her eyes again as she grabbed her bag, walking around the room she began grabbing things and stuffing them into it, the anger building up in her at James and herself, causing her to shake slightly.
Letting out a few sobs she continued making her way around the room, not caring that she was making a mess in her haste to pack things. Not caring that she probably looked a mess, and trying so hard not to care about the argument she had just had with the man she still loved more than anything else in this world.
Her hand reached out and messed up a pile of clothes, grabbing for her own clothes and stuffing them into the bag. But the force of her stuffing them into the bag caused her to drop it, the contents spilling out slightly. She let out an annoyed cry as she fell to her knees to pick her stuff back up.
As she finished she let out a sigh and looked around the room from where she was kneeling to see if she had forgotten anything, her eyes fell on a bit of fabric that was sticking out of James’s bag by the door. Sniffing loudly she crawled over to the bag by the door, she sat down normally her back leaning against the foot of the bed as she pulled the rest of the fabric out of the bag.
Amelia’s eyes watered again as she looked at the jumper in her hands. It was the Quidditch jumper he wore at school that she always stole from James when she was cold, feeling ill or just generally feeling down. It was incredibly soft, worn, and large. She brought it up to her face and inhaled deeply, it always smelled of James.
She felt her chest tighten slightly as another sob escaped her lips. Taking the jumper away from her face she pulled it on, the sleeves were too long for her and she ended up crying into them instead of her hands.
She heard a knock on the door and Lucy’s voice come from the other side of it. “Amelia it’s me, let me in.”
Amelia brought her head up from her covered hands and leant up in front of her to unlock the door before she sat back straight, her legs moving out of the way so Lucy could come in.
The door opened slowly as Lucy came into the room, Amelia kept her eyes on the bottom of the jumper, fiddling with the worn hem. She heard Lucy close the door behind her.
“What happened?” she asked her, Amelia shook her head as she screwed her face up slightly, the tears falling down her face again. Not trusting herself to speak yet, she knew the sobs would make it unintelligible.
Lucy waited patiently as she slid to the floor by the door; her knees touching Amelia’s both sitting cross legged. She could only watch as her friend tried to calm her tears. After what seemed an age Amelia finally spoke up.
“How did we let it get so bad?”
Lucy didn’t know how to answer her.
“Come home,” Fred said simply as he stood next to James. It had been an hour before he found him; He almost missed him as he was skulking in a dark corner at the bar of the local pub of the area. James was hunched over on the table, his head in his hands and more than a few empty bottles of drink in front of him. “Talk to her.”
“What’s the point?” he heard James mumble from behind his hands. Fred shifted slightly on his feet before he shoved his hands in his pockets. “She’ll just walk away from me like she did when we split up.”
“James you need to try again,” Fred said as he sat down next to James, not knowing what else to say to him.
“I have done nothing but keep trying for her Fred!” James yelled angrily before he grabbed for the drink in front of him.
Fred resisted the urge to roll his eyes at James’s behaviour. “James, this isn’t helping you at all. Alcohol is never a solution to anything serious like this.”
“Wow,” James said harshly before he downed his drink and asked the barman for another one, he eyed James suspiciously before he poured him another drink and pushed it over to him, James already had the money ready to pay him on the bar. “Life advice from Fred Weasley, don’t hear that everyday now do you?”
“There’s no need to be so rude James,” Fred stated, feeling quite hurt by what James had said. It wasn’t his fault that the family saw him as the joker and never one to give help or advice.
“No one asked you to come looking for me did they? No one cares that I’ve gone do they? No one cares how I feel about everything, or what I’m going through. Especially her,” he said the last sentence through gritted teeth before grabbing the other drink and downing that as well, his face grimacing at the taste making its way down his throat.
“I care James.”
“You’re about the only one,” James muttered before looking at the barman again.
“You need to slow down there mate,” The barman said as he poured another drink “Drinking this quickly isn’t good for your health,” he passed James the drink. James gave him a hard look before he downed the drink quickly and pushed his money towards the barman.
“Don’t worry I’m leaving soon anyway.”
The barman watched James for a few more seconds before he went off to serve the next customer.
“I think we should go,” Fred said, grabbing hold of James by the arm and trying steering him out of his seat.
“I think you should stop telling me what to do,” James growled pulling his arm away from Fred a hard glare on his face. They both walked out of the pub and James began walking away from Fred. He rushed over to James and grabbed his arm to pull him to a halt.
“I know you feel -”
“No Fred you don’t know anything! You don’t know what it’s like to know that you’re marriage has failed!”
Fred just looked at him, “No I don’t know how it feels James, and I’m sorry.”
James ran his hand through his hair as he took a deep breath, sorrow had filled his eyes and they were starting to sting. He shook his head as he turned away from Fred, not wanting him to know that he was near tears.
“I done a stupid thing,” he said, Fred could hear from his voice that he was trying not to cry. “And I wish so hard that I could take it back but I can’t.”
Fred walked forward and placed a hand on James’s shoulder comfortingly, James didn’t throw him off this time, and he just dropped his arms down to his side and stood dejectedly. “And I can’t keep doing this Fred, I really can’t. There are only so many times I can punish myself. And she doesn’t even care at all! I’m done Fred. I’m done with this - with everything. I’m going to give her a divorce because I just can’t put myself through this anymore.”
Fred nodded slowly as he gave James a hug, James clutched onto Fred as he sniffed back his tears.
“And I know that she’ll never forgive me, because I can see it in her eyes that she hates me. I don’t know why I bothered even bloody trying!” He pulled away from Fred, suddenly feeling angry at himself. “I’ve had enough Fred, I have had bloody enough of this, and of her! I’m done with her.”
Amelia wiped her tears with the sleeve of the jumper, as Lucy watched her.
“The only thing I don’t understand Amelia is why you came here if you can’t stand to be near him.”
“I don’t know,” Amelia said with a sniff. “I only thought it was going to be a weekend and I would have been able to see you all for that last time...”
“Amelia ...” Lucy said softly as she placed her hand gently on Amelia’s hand, causing her to stop her babbling and look up at Lucy. She let out a small sigh as she shook her head slightly and shrugged.
“I just don’t know Lucy. I missed him. I know I shouldn’t because of the way that he treated me but I just – I just miss him. I miss the way he made me feel like the only person in the whole world; the way he looked after me when I was sick or hurt; the way he used to wipe my tears away when I was reading a sad book. The way he made me laugh when work was stressing me out. How he ...” Amelia faltered.
Lucy could only look at her friend sadly and rub her hand comfortingly as tears sprung in Amelia’s eyes.
“And now I have to come home to an empty flat and see reminders of him everywhere. It’s one of the reasons why I work as much as I can, It’s because I can’t face coming home to an empty flat and thinking about what we used to be.”
“You could’ve sent me an owl Amelia; I would have come over and – I don’t know, helped you somehow.”
“But I couldn’t tell you, no matter how much I hated him for what happened I couldn’t bring his family into it. I didn’t want them to have to choose a side to be on.”
Lucy sighed as she watched Amelia, play with the jumper. She didn’t know what to say to Amelia, she wanted to tell her that there wouldn’t be a divide but she knew that family would side with family in the end, even though Amelia was as much family as everyone else.
“I’ve been trying to convince myself that I could be without him,” Amelia spoke again, interrupting the silence that had engulfed them. “And for so long I had kidded myself into thinking that I was doing fine, that I was going to get over him. And then this happens, he turns up at my work and asks me to help him out. I can’t help myself when I say yes."
She sniffed before continuing, "Now I’m around him almost every moment of the day and it makes me think that maybe I won’t ever be able to live without him. Nothing will ever be as great as they were with him, and that no matter how many times I have told myself and him that I don’t love him anymore I know that I’m lying, because in all honesty he’s the only one I’ll ever want in this life.”
She gave another sniff as she wiped her eyes with the sleeve of the jumper again. “I want to forgive him but there’s this one small part of my brain that thinks he’s just going to do it again. And I’m scared that by the time I get that voice to shut up it’ll be too late to let him know how I feel.”
Lucy stared at Amelia for a moment.
“You’ve been pushing him away to protect yourself; I can see why you would do that. Hell I would have done it myself. But you need to talk to him about this Amelia, you really do. I can only offer you words of comfort and advice but in the end you need to think about whether or not you can be without him.”
Amelia nodded her head at Lucy. “I can’t be without him Lucy.”
“Then you need to forgive him, just hear him out Amelia. Before it’s too late.”
Fred had managed to finally convince James to come home, but only after James made Fred promise that he could crash in his room. It would be a bit cramped but Fred agreed.
“What’s up with you?” Albus asked looking at James who was sat on the end of Fred’s bed, a dark look on his face as he glared at nothing. “Amelia kick you out? Did she finally see sense and want the better looking Potter?”
“Albus for once just please stop talking,” James muttered. Albus looked at James before turning to look at Fred with questioning eyes; Fred just shook his head at him.
“So tell me Albus, how does Mariah feel about you making all these jokes about Amelia?” Louis asked Albus who scoffed.
“She knows she can’t control me, I’m a ladies’ man.”
It was Mariah’s turn to scoff, Albus turned to look at Mariah who was sat on his bed.
“More like a lady man,” she stated.
“I am no lady!” Albus shouted outraged at her.
“Like mother like son aye?” Louis laughed.
“You must admit you do look rather fetching in those sexy women’s trousers,” Fred said with a wink at Albus.
Albus lifted his leg up onto the bed and started rubbing them seductively, much to the disgust of everyone else in the room.
“Oi!” Mariah cried shoving Albus as she laughed, he stumbled to the floor. “Stop touching my trousers like that!”
The boys laughed including the sullen James, as Albus stood up straight.
“You’re wearing Mariah’s trousers?” Louis asked incredulously, shaking his head at his cousin.
“Mine were all dirty,” Albus told them with a shrug. “And mum’s refusing to do my washing for me, so I borrowed Mariah’s. We share everything.”
“Including your bad taste,” Fred joked; Mariah threw a pillow at him, which he ducked out of the way of.
“Well you must have,” Fred laughed as he threw the pillow back at her. “You’ve agreed to go out with jerk face here,” he pointed at Albus who was still rubbing the legs of the trousers whilst winking at Louis. “And he’s the biggest freak I know.”
“Must be love,” Albus said, now rubbing his torso over his t shirt and dancing in front of a scared Louis.
“I must be drunk,” Mariah laughed, shaking her head at Albus.
A/N: Does anyone want to know how many chapters are left in this story? And... would anyone be interested if I posted the prequel to this story after I've completed this one?I love you all!
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by crimson quill