Adorable chapter image by DangerousDraco589 @TDA
As you very well know (better than anyone else, I suspect), I was sick for five years, and just began my recovery a year ago. Lying on my deathbed, I couldn’t help but realize… My life isn’t how I always wanted it to be. I didn’t expect to get pregnant and then married and end up running some old bar for the rest of my life. And I have to admit that while you and Chase were at school this school year I’ve been doing some… partying. Anyways, I’ve met someone great—Daryl—and he’s really helped me to find my inner light. I think you would like him; he says that teachers are the poets of The Man. I’ve done some soul searching and have discovered that Daryl is my soul-mate. I love you and Chase, but this life just doesn’t belong to me. I’m tired of being trapped to a bed. Daryl and I are moving to Santa Cruz, California. I’m afraid I’m going to have to take all of our furniture, but I’m sure Molly will let you stay with her until you can afford some new stuff. Tell the locals I said au revoir!
Your(soon to be ex, but let’s focus on the positive) wife,
We all knew this was coming. Okay, maybe not this exactly, but something. My mom has been going crazy lately with the partying, ever since she’s gotten her health back and her hair has grown into some cute pixie style. And now she’s running off to America with some hippie guy named Daryl.
But, no matter how expected it may have been, the second I read that letter in my father’s office I instantly had this inescapable feeling of being… unwanted. It was no secret that I wasn’t exactly planned, my creepy Uncle Jimmy (on my mother’s side, of course) never hesitated to remind me that I was the result of a drunken one night stand. But never once have I felt like she honestly regretted me being born.
I look up at my dad, and then over at Louis, and then I just kind of can’t speak. Louis gives me a questioning look, but I can only shake my head. I’m too numb to even speak.
I notice that we’re walking somewhere, just my dad and I. I wonder where Louis is. Next thing I know, we’re in McGonagall’s office. Why is time passing by so quickly?
“Of course it’s fine for the two of you to take the week off!” I think I hear the old woman say, “I am so sorry, Mr. Longbottom. No, Chase doesn’t need to make up all of her work, she can just be excused. Sixth year isn’t all that important, anyways.”
There’s some more conversation, but I can barely register it. I realize that I’m now in front of a fireplace, and I’m expected to step into it.
I walk in and in a deadpan monotone say, “The Burrow.”
As soon as I’m out of the fireplace Molly Weasley has wrapped me in a huge hug that only she can give, “Oh, my darling Chastity!” that’s the official name on my birth certificate, but that was really only to please my Grandma Abbott. Nobody calls me Chastity, except old people. But I’m okay with these old people; Arthur and Molly are like the loving grandparents I never had.
Some more stuff happens, still in a blur, and I look at Molly’s face and realize she’s asked me a question, “Would you prefer a guest room or Louis’s room?”
Louis has been living with his grandparents ever since he and Aunt Fleur got into a huge argument when Louis was in fifth year. They’d long since made up, but he liked it at the Burrow far too much to move back. Regardless, it would have been a very short move, since the entire Potter-Weasley family has used their vast sums of money to buy out the area, so they all live within ten yards of each other. His sister lives here too, Victoire and her four year old daughter, Gabbi.
Rose wasn’t the first Weasley girl to get pregnant as a teenager. Victoire had barely graduated when she got pregnant. Everyone thought it was Teddy’s daughter, but she sadly admitted that it wasn’t, though she didn’t tell us whose it was. It broke poor Teddy’s heart, seeing as he was practically in love with her.
“Louis’s,” I answer Molly’s question softly and without a second thought. I needed the kind of comfort you just couldn’t get from a guest room.
She smiles, and I think she understands my reasoning, “I have some of Ginny’s old pajamas. You can borrow them until Hannah sends your clothes over.”
I nod as I’m handed a soft pair of flannel P.J.s. They’re nice and warm. Louis’s room has a Queen sized bed with neatly made navy blue plaid bedding, matching curtains, and posters all over the wall of cool muggle musicians like The Who, Led Zeppelin, and Cream. His carpet is made of the same soft, beige carpeting that covers the house. I sigh, I would definitely be able to fall asleep in here. I’m not sure if I would have if I were in some lamely decorated guest room.
The closet door is as covered with posters and magazine cutouts as the walls are, and I feel the first emotion I’ve felt since I read the letter: curiosity.
Making sure to close the door behind me so that Arthur and Molly don’t think I’m some kind of creep, I quietly open the closet door to peek inside.
And, somehow… I start laughing uncontrollably. Taped to the inside of his closet door are so many pictures of One Direction it’s almost unbelievable. I knew Louis was into muggle bands and all, but I didn’t know that included boy bands.
I don’t know how, but I was still laughing. I, who five minutes ago wasn’t sure if I still even possessed the ability to smile, was on a giggling rampage. Louis Weasley, a popular, athletic, seventeen year old boy, was obsessed with One Direction. This was pure gold. I decided right then that I would never tell anybody, not even him, about this. It was too sweet to share, this moment of just sudden happiness and laughter. This moment that could only have been caused by something having to do with Louis, of course.
I eventually tire myself out, and crawl into his bed. It smelled the same as his bed back at Hogwarts, but it was much more comfortable. I turned the light off, closed my eyes, and tried to block out all the bad thoughts.
I was swimming in a pool. I was under water, but I didn’t need to come up for air. It was amazing; there were thousands of different types of fish around me. But they were made of… pancakes? And why was the water suddenly syrup? I start swimming away just in time to escape the bacon shark.
My eyes flash open. I’d been sleeping, but the smell of breakfast had woken me up. I sit up and stretch, remembering where I was, and why I was here.
I also notice something that wasn’t there last night—a piece of parchment on the nightstand. I pick it up, and see that it’s an I.L.
R.L.W- Hey, hun, it’s Rose. I heard what happened, so I had Grandma Molly set up an I.L. for us just in case you wanted to talk about it. I’ll have it with me all day, so just write whenever, yeah?
I run over to Louis’s desk and quickly find a quill and some ink, he won’t mind if I use it. I don’t know what to say, so I write the first thing that comes to mind.
C.A.L- I think your grandmother called me Chastity.
R.L.W- CHASE! YOU WROTE ME! THIS IS SO EXCITING! But, urhm, totally not exciting, due to the present circumstances. I mean, well, how are you holding up?
C.A.L- Surprisingly, I’m actually… not that bad. Yesterday I was really just numb, and nothing felt real, but I think that I really don’t mind that much. I didn’t like seeing the way she hurt my dad anyways, always going out and never wanting to spend time with him anymore.
R.L.W- Really? That’s great, I guess. Did you get stuck in one of the boring guest rooms at the Burrow?
R.L.W- WAIT NO. YOU SLEPT IN LOUIS’S BED, DIDN’T YOU? I KNEW IT. I CAN’T WAIT TO TELL HIM.
C.A.L- It’s not a big deal. And I really don’t know what’s going to happen with us, anyways.
I sit back a second and look at what I’ve just written. It was so… true. I didn’t want to be in a relationship right now. It was just the other day that I was practically groped by Danny Boot, whom I was actually starting to have feelings for, and then that stuff with Louis not saying anything when he was poisoned, and now all this with my mom… I’m a sidekick! I shouldn’t have to deal with all of this drama! Now was not the time for me to get a boyfriend, whether he’s perfect and sweet and funny and has a six pack or not.
R.L.W- So… You DON’T want to date Louis?
C.A.L- Not now, Rose. Not when I’m like this. Louis deserves better than that.
R.L.W - The two of you are so frustrating! First he spends most of his life denying the fact that he has feelings for you when he so obviously does, and now once he actually admits it you’re too angsty to date him.
C.A.L- And that’s another thing! If he likes me so much, why did it take me snogging another guy for him to realize it?
R.L.W- Chase, you and I both know it’s not like that. If he only wanted you so that no other guys could have you, why didn’t he go for you when you were with Albus?
Oh. Erhm, I guess I should mention that I dated Al Potter in fourth year… People rarely remember it, though, seeing as it wasn’t all that interesting.
C.A.L- Puh-lease. That barely counted as a relationship.
R.L.W- IT LASTED HALF A YEAR. HE WAS YOUR FIRST KISS. IT TOTALLY AND EXTREMELY COUNTS.
C.A.L- Huh. What is it with me and your cousins, anyways? Next thing you know James will be revealing his undying love for me or Freddie will snog me in a broom closet or something crazy like that.
R.L.W- You’re getting off subject!
C.A.L- Yeah, well anyways, the smell of your grandma’s pancakes is calling to me. Bye, now!
R.L.W- Grr! You make me angry, kid!
I fold up the piece of parchment and put it in the giant pocket of the pajamas I’m wearing.
Following the magnificent smell of buttermilk pancakes, I soon reach the kitchen where my dad and Molly are sitting and drinking tea, deep in conversation.
“Of course I did, but you know I wouldn’t have asked her if I didn’t think it was right—“
Molly quickly interrupts my dad when she sees me at the bottom of the stairs, “Chase! Darling, grab a plate! I’m so used to cooking for so many people that I’ve made quite enough for an army. Dig in!”
She wasn’t lying when she said she’d made a lot of food. I thank my lucky stars for the fact that I rarely gain weight (I usually curse it for my lack of curves) no matter how much I eat.
“So, do you want to go with me to Diagon Alley today to pick out new furniture? I’m sure your taste in décor is far better than mine,” my dad asks me distractedly as I devour some scrambled eggs.
“Sure, Dad. We need to go anyways, the locals must be going crazy with the bar closed and all.”
“Actually, Young Scotty called last night while you were sleeping. He said that he caught Hannah on her way out, and when she told him the news he was really put out. He called to ask if he could run the bar as a type of manager when we’re at school, and said he didn’t need any pay as long as he could live in our guest room. I guess he got laid off from his job at the pet store, and couldn’t afford his apartment anymore. I told him of course he could, and he started this morning.”
“Wow, that’s great,” I take a sip of chocolate milk, “When we get back I ought to tell Teddy that Young Scotty is getting off his bum and actually doing something with life.”
“Chasey!” Four year old Gabbi runs down the stairs and into my arms, “When did you get here, Chasey Whasey?”
She’d once heard Louis call me that, and thought it was so hilarious she’d been calling me that ever since, “Hey, Gabbi Wabbi. I got here last night, but it was late. You were already sleeping.”
Gabbi was a beautiful little girl, with the Weasley blue eyes. Her hair was blonde, but dirty blonde, unlike her mother who had the Delacour sandy blonde hair.
Victoire walked down the stairs after her daughter, “Gabbi! Stop eating Chase’s bacon!”
I laugh, “I really don’t mind, I have to go get dressed anyways,” I turn to Molly, “Thanks for breakfast, it was the food of the gods.”
I pick Gabbi up off my lap and set her down. After I get dressed, my dad and I floo ourselves to the Cauldron.
I take a sip of my tea; I’d been up since four, unable to sleep. Molly had just woken up now and found me sitting at the table in the kitchen. She’d made me the tea and sat down to talk to me about what was on my mind.
“It’s not Hannah, is it?” She asks me wisely.
“What do you mean?”
“Come on now, Neville. My kids tell me everything. I know that you only married Hannah because she was pregnant, and I know it was after a one night stand. That’s pretty common knowledge. But I also know that the one night stand happened because you were trying to get over someone else. Your daughter doesn’t seem to be the only one that has a thing for blondes.”
I look at the ground, blushing, “Who told you that part?”
“Hermione. But that was years ago. Honey, I know it might be too soon, but Luna is single.”
Shaking my head, I sip some more of my tea, “She’s not single, she’s widowed. Rolf didn’t leave her, he died. I could never understand the pain she must have gone through.”
“He was poisoned by the mafia twelve years ago when the twins were only three. I’m sure she’s ready to get out there again. Besides, it was always obvious that you were the one she really loved,” Molly smiles warmly and puts her hand over mine.
“Then why did she marry him? Why didn’t she marry me if it was me she so obviously loved, like you say?”
“Does the reason why she did it matter? Just talk to her. You need to go to Diagon Alley tomorrow anyways, isn’t that where the Quibbler is published? Just go find her at work, stop by and say hello.”
I sigh, “Molly, Hannah just left me. Whether I felt that way at first or not, I did grow to love her. I’m not quite over it yet.”
“Oh, good heavens Neville, I’m not asking you to pledge the rest of your life to Luna! I’m just saying that she might be a good friend to have at a time like this. She understands you like nobody else does.”
The old woman was right. No one quite got me like Luna always did; she saw what others didn’t. She thought I was a hero before I killed that snake. And then… she got engaged to someone else.
I was twenty-two. Luna had just come back from her trip to study Moon Frogs in the rainforest. She’d been gone for five months, and during those months I decided to tell her my true feelings for her. We were meeting for lunch at some café on the Alley.
I walked purposefully, although I had to slow down when I saw her. She looked beautiful; the trip had made her skin tanner and her hair even blonder. She was wearing a hat and dress that made her look like the heroin of some old ‘40s muggle movie, and I felt myself fall even deeper in love just at the sight of her.
“L-Luna,” I stuttered out, I still hadn’t fully grown out of my teenage awkwardness, “Hi.”
“Neville!” She grinned big, standing up to hug me, “It’s been far too long.”
“Yes, it has. Listen, Luna, there’s something I need to tell you before I lose my courage. I’m—I’m in love with you.”
Her face softens, and a look of sadness sweeps over her, “Oh, Neville. Why didn’t you tell me before I left?” Her eyes start to water, “You should have told me before I left.”
“Why?” I feel sick and confused.
She sits down, and I do the same. She takes off her hat and wipes the tears from under her eyes, “Neville, I met someone. On my trip. We’re—we’re going to get married.”
“Oh.” My heart drops. I don’t know what to say. The girl I love loves someone else, and there’s nothing I can do about it, “I have to go. I’m sorry, Luna. Goodbye.”
I get up and walk away, unsure of what to feel, of what to think. What do most people do in this situation? In books, whenever the main character is feeling down, he goes to a bar and has a drink. I decide to give it a shot.
“Remember,” Molly continues, “She may have been the one to get engaged first, but you’re the one that ran off to the Leaky Cauldron and took someone else home the second you found out.”
“I didn’t go there with the intent of taking Hannah home!” I defend myself, “I just stopped by for a drink, and then I saw her. I hadn’t seen her since Hogwarts, and there was a lot of firewhisky and reminiscing. Is it really my fault that one thing led to another? How was I supposed to know she would get pregnant?”
This is the first time I’ve seen Luna since I revealed my love to her. It’s only been two months, and yet my entire life has changed.
It was an accident. I was walking down the road, and I happened to pass by a bridal shop. Through the window, I immediately see her. She… She looks beautiful. It’s the only way to describe her in that dress. She sees me too, and I know I can’t walk away with a clear conscience. I walk into the store, hearing a bell ring when I open the door.
“Neville,” once again, she smiles that big grin at me, “I’m so happy to see you.”
“I’m glad to see you, too. Are you here alone?”
“Hermione and Ginny will be here in an hour. So, how are you?”
“Well, I’m, erh, I’m engaged too, now.”
“Really?” Her expression drops, but she manages to regain her smile again, “To whom?”
“Do you remember Hannah Abbott? From school?”
“Yes, I do. She was… a lovely girl. Why so soon?”
I look down at the ground, ashamed, “She’s… pregnant.”
“But it was your choice to propose to Hannah once she told you about the baby. Didn’t you still love Luna?”
“Of course I did, but you know I wouldn’t have asked her if I didn’t think it was right—“
Molly interrupts me, and I realize that Chase is at the bottom of the stairs. She eats breakfast, gets dressed, and then we’re off to the Leaky Cauldron.
I’m pleased to see that Young Scotty has everything taken care of; he’s wiping the bar down when we walk in.
“Chase!” The locals all shout once they see her, and she happily gives all of them hugs. Hannah never liked that a bunch of drunks were like family to Chase, but I’ve always loved it. She’s a free spirit, like her mother; nothing like me as a kid. Everyone always says they see so much of me in her, but I know that she’s much better than that.
Big Carter is talking to her, “Scorpius is my new pen pal! We’ve become good friends. That was so nice, what you did for him with the love potion,” the big softie begins to tear up, like he does so often, “Even though you did leave him locked in that room for hours.”
Chase laughs, “You? And Scorpius? Pen pals? Weirdly, that makes a lot of sense.”
She finally seemed to get back to normal. She was so distant all day yesterday, I was worried. I could tell that Louis was too. He was a good kid; I knew he would always protect her. I remember a couple of years ago, when Chase started dating Albus, overhearing Louis calming telling the younger Potter boy all the terrible things he would do to him if he ever hurt her. Honestly, it was pretty awesome. I never told Chase, though, because I figured it wasn’t really my business.
We leave the bar and start walked down the Alley; the furniture store was all the way at the other end.
“So, Molly tells me you slept in Louis’s room last night,” I chuckle, knowing that she probably only did it so she wouldn’t sleep in some lonely guest room like I had to. But she and I liked to mess around with each other, so I said it like she had some ulterior motive.
Her face turns bright red, and she absentmindedly says, “Fuckin’ blushies!”
Her eyes go big when she realizes she’s cussed in front of me, but I just laugh, “You do know that I’ve heard you cuss before? Merlin, you’ve been doing it since you could talk. Your mom always blamed it on me for cussing around her all the time when she was pregnant with you.”
Chase snorts, “You? Cussing? Sorry, Dad, but you don’t exactly come off as the swearing sailor type.”
“Yeah, I know. After the war I took it up so that I could maintain whatever ‘bad boy’ reputation I thought I had. It’s a tough habit to quit.”
She gets a thoughtful look, like she’s considering something, “Maybe I should stop cussing. So that Rose’s baby doesn’t do it.”
“Wow. This is weird.”
“What?” She gives me a questioning look.
“It doesn’t feel like that long ago that your Aunt Hermione was telling your Uncle Ron to stop swearing because she was pregnant with Rose. And now you’re going to stop because Rose is pregnant with her own child. That makes me feel really old!”
A/N: I’d like to start off by saying that I have never been exposed to a parent leaving, so HUGE apologies if I didn’t represent Chase’s emotions right. I kind of justified it by thinking that the Longbottoms aren’t really your average kind of people. Also, I’d meant for the entire story to be from Chase’s point of view, but I cheated a little bit for this chapter. Sorry for the sad chappie, I tried to not make it super dark. As usual, I’d love for you to review with favorite parts, quotes, predictions, and what you would like to see next. Thanks for reading! x
“Oh,” My daughter smiles, musing over the idea of me being old.