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Collateral Damage by ariellem
Chapter 1 : Greater Good
Rating: MatureChapter Reviews: 15

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 Betaed by the amazing Academica. :)



If life is what you make it, then Peter Pettigrew’s life was a game of chess.

He ironically played the white side, the side that chose what to do first.

He dodged other people’s attacks, and struck back with a vengeance. He had chosen his side and had his own reasons. He was not willing to compromise.

Muggles weren’t stupid, but their intolerance and their inability to see that being different wasn’t a bad thing made them disposable.

He could remember the fits his body would have every time he tried to suppress his magic. He recalled the electric currents that burnt through his brain and ran down his spine. Sometimes the magic would come through anyway, though; he could remember the boys from the elementary school throwing rocks at him as he tried to climb a tree to get away from them.

He remembered a branch falling on the leader’s head, even though the boy was nowhere near the tree. Peter could remember the branch levitating and falling on the boy’s head.

To the best of Peter’s knowledge, the boy was still in a coma, and his parents still couldn’t understand what had happened. No one blamed Peter, though other parents looked at him in disgust.

He was just the small, chubby, little boy who couldn’t defend himself.

But Peter knew he was special, he wasn’t a hero or an angel,;he learned that quickly as he read all the books he could find about people with special abilities. He didn’t feel the need to help people and he would never be kind to his enemies if they needed him.

So Peter was, as usual, alone.

He was never very good at most of his subjects. He excelled at math, surpassing his age group, but everything else suffered terribly. The teachers started looking at him oddly; they started whispering when he walked by, and when he looked back at them, they would suddenly go quiet.

So he let his math grade suffer as well; he was brought in and accused of cheating. He let it go past him. But still the whispers continued.

The incident happened during a class where some of the boys had decided it would be fun to take the class rat and dunk it underwater.

Peter had never felt such anger before. Some of the girls from the class watched, and one even giggled as the ringleader brought the rat above water, Peter could hear it gasping.

Suddenly, the ringleader began choking; he clutched at his throat and let the rat drop to the floor, and the rat ran for it and was never seen again. As the boy was turning blue, the girl that giggled turned around and saw Peter.

You freak!” she yelled. “Stop it, you mutant! You’re hurting him!”

Peter stopped. The boy was unconscious.

He ran away like the rat, not wanting to try his odds against a bunch of angry ten year olds who weren’t afraid to use their fists.

A couple months of torment later, he received a letter from a school, a school of special people like him. Peter was both relieved and disappointed at the same time. It was good to know he wouldn’t have to deal with normal people anymore, except for summers.

But he had wanted to believe he was special.

Hogwarts was different than anything he had ever expected. There, he had friends, Sirius Black and James Potter, who reminded him of the heroes in his books, and Remus Lupin the boy who was like a tormented angel.

He was perfectly content during his first couple of years at Hogwarts to play the tag-along, or the ‘stupid one’, as others less kind would call it.

Screwing up on his tests was easy; asking Remus for help because he didn’t understand what the lesson was about was fine. He didn’t mind pretending to be stupid.

He was accepted.

There was that time in fourth year, though. He had figured iout long before James and Sirius where Remus was going every full moon, but he pretended to be surprised. It was taking the other boys so long to master the Patronus Charm, and Remus needed someone to be there, so he let his guise slip and before the start of the fifth year he could successfully turn into a rat.

James had looked confused, and Sirius had stated his confusion outright. Peter just shrugged and said it was probably because his creature was smaller and less complex. They swallowed it and moved on.

It was in sixth year that Peter found someone that he felt was like him. She was an actress, a girl hiding her true potential in order to not be called out. She was a girl desperate for the acceptance and approval that he would be able to provide.

He daydreamed about this girl, watching her every move. She only slipped once.

Her name was Dorcas Meadows, she was a Slytherien. She shared the same dorm with Bellatrix Lestrange, a girl whose self-consciousness and need for respect would hamper her later in life.

But he missed his chance, and Remus got her instead. Remus found her, ready to jump off the Astronomy Tower. He was there to help her down, to tell her she was special.

He stole her from right under Peter’s nose.

Peter was right, Dorcas was special; in fact she was genius. She wasn’t an angel or a hero. She was a fallen angel.

She was supposed to be Peter’s.

Peter started to distance himself from Remus and the others. He would have been perfectly happy to have been their left-behind, the tag-along, why did Remus do that?


Peter actually considered jumping off the Astronomy tower himself, but changed his mind when he meant Rabastan Lestrange in the library while trying to avoid Remus and James.

Rabastan could barely breathe without using an inhaler every ten seconds. He said he had some kind of breathing disorder that magic couldn’t fix. He was studying medicine and said he’d someday find a cure.

Peter had no doubt that he would.

He stuck around Rabastan. They were hardly equals; Peter was much more intelligent than he was and Rabastan knew it. He didn’t bother hiding it around him. Rabastan introduced him to some of his friends, and Peter liked them. They were all different, they all understood.

Bellatrix was the quietest. She wore glasses, her frizzy hair was cut short, and she looked even smaller then she really was in her oversized uniform. 

“My parents said that if I get all Os in my classes, they’ll fix these”, she said, pointing at her eyes, Peter had to look around to make sure she wasn’t talking to anyone else before answering.

“Oh, that’s nice.”

“You liked Meadows, I remember that.”

“Yeah, she was interesting.”

“I can be interesting. too.”

That was Peter’s first kiss. It was also when he decided that he was possibly in love with her.

The years passed. Peter never had a relationship with Bellatrix, though he certainly liked her—even loved her. The contrast between their backgrounds made it obvious they would never be together.

They had kissed once, and they never kissed again, at least not until her wedding day, when she was about to be married to Rabastan. Peter didn’t attend the wedding, but he saw the bride beforehand. He had meant to stay for the reception, but he merely left for home cold and confused.

He began dancing on what James called the Line of Good Versus Evil, though all Peter saw was the Line of The Greater Good.

Wouldn’t the world be better when Muggles realized how special magic people really were, when they accepted those who were different?

He danced right in the middle, listening to both sides and processing them equally. In order to hear everything, he had to join both the Death Eaters and the Order. Every time the Death Eaters were about to do something he felt was unnecessary, he would tell the Order, allowing them to block the attacks.

Peter enjoyed playing God.

Dorcas was the first to find out. Peter decided that in every game of chess, there must be some kind of collateral damage. So he led her up to the rooftop of a building that he had no clue about, letting her follow him, and he told her lies. He lied about everything; he may or may not have told her that her friends, Remus and Marlene, would die within the next twenty minutes if she didn’t do it.

He didn’t consider it murder. She threw herself off the building; all he did was talk. He told them later that Voldemort killed her, that he had seen it and couldn’t do anything about it. No one was surprised; they all saw him as the stupid one, not the God of their war, the one who moved the pieces.

But it was all for the Greater Good, all for a better world.

Why couldn’t anyone else see it that way?





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