Chapter 2 : Strangers With Cigarettes
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Nearly a week had passed since the Pettigrew incident. Andromeda was still a little nervous about Rabastan and the others finding out that she was involved in freeing him. He had been so angry the next morning when he’d come down to breakfast, threatening that he’d use the Cruciatus Curse on anyone who had helped him down.
Rabastan’s temper was yet another reason why Andromeda didn’t want to marry him. The bruise on her arm was finally beginning to fade, and it had been a hassle hiding it from her friends in their dormitory. She’d been a bit distant from them since school had started, so she couldn’t blame them when they came storming at her while she was eating breakfast in the Great Hall.
“Andromeda Black!” came the voice that made her internally groan.
Marcy Cartier was the most temperamental woman Andromeda had ever met, apart from her own sister Bellatrix, of course. With her deep black hair and piercing grey eyes, Marcy could turn you to stone, which Andromeda had a feeling was about to happen to her.
“Is this becoming a seventh-year habit?” she continued with a shrill, standing across the table with folded arms. “I mean not telling us about the party last week was one thing but avoiding us in the mornings?”
Andromeda held up her hand, her mouth still full from the bite she had just taken.
“Don’t hold your bloody hand out at me Andromeda Black,” Marcy warned with a finger.
“I don’t think she’s holding her bloody hand out at you Marcy,” Xia panted, finally catching up to her. Her amber colored hair was tied up in a tight ponytail, showing off her green, emerald eyes. “She’s just chewing her food.”
“I don’t care if she’s chewing her food or choking on it,” Marcy shouted at Xia, throwing her hands in the air. She’d been more angry than usual since school had started.
“Who’s choking?” Pru panted, running down the Great Hall after Xia, her short heels clicking against the floor.
“No one is choking Pru,” Xia rolled her eyes at the brunette beauty whose hair had fallen out of its gracious bun and around her shoulders. “Marcy here is accusing Andromeda of holding her hand out to her when she’s clearly just asking for a few moments to swallow her food.”
“So she’s not choking?” Pru frowned.
“No!” Marcy and Xia both shouted at the same time, making Pru step back.
“But she might as well be,” Marcy sat down, staring straight into Andromeda’s eyes. “It’s been weeks. You’ve been avoiding us, and now you’re attending Slytherin parties without us?”
“I didn’t want to go to that party,” Andromeda explained, finally swallowing her food. “Rabastan made me go.”
“So now Rabastan tells you what to do?” Marcy narrowed her eyes at her.
“No!” Andromeda nearly yelled, frustrated. “I unwillingly accompanied him and left before it was over anyway. Besides, I’d assumed you’d all be there.”
“Are you alright?” Xia asked, sitting down next to Marcy, followed by Pru. “You’ve been a bit distant.”
“I’m fine,” Andromeda smiled at them. “I’ve just been stressed out with N.E.W.T.s and…family stuff.”
“This is exactly what I’m talking about,” Marcy threw her hands in the air again. “Family stuff.”
“You can talk to us you know,” Pru gently placed her hand on Andromeda’s. “We’re your best friends.”
Andromeda stared at her friends longingly. She loved and trusted them, but what was she supposed to say? By the by I’ve started seeing a shrink but I can’t even tell her that my father and sister are Death Eaters because she might get them thrown into Azkaban. No, definitely not.
“You know how my family is. They’re anti anything that’s not Pureblood and they’re pressuring me to…” Andromeda trailed off.
“Pressuring you to what?” Xia asked kindly, and her kindness came so naturally that Andromeda was reminded these were, after all, her best friends. Spending the summer alone, shut in her room, pretending that there weren’t Death Eater meetings happening in the dining room, had distanced her even from the people she cared most about.
“Get married,” she sighed, letting it out. “And that’s not the worst part.”
“They’ve arranged a marriage for you?” Pru guessed.
“They’re shipping you off to France to find a husband?” she guessed again.
“No,” Andromeda frowned.
“For goodness sake Pru let the woman talk!” Marcy shouted, still hot tempered.
Andromeda faintly smiled at their banter before leaning in close and whispering, “Rabastan proposed.”
“What?!” Pru clasped her mouth, her brown eyes wide as they blinked vigorously.
“Isn’t your sister married to his brother?” Marcy asked, her tone incredulous.
“Yes!” Andromeda exclaimed, still whispering. “He thinks we’re all going to be one big happy family.”
“Well I’m not really surprised, Andromeda,” Xia said in a know-it-all tone. “His brother and your sister are married after all, so it was only a matter of time. Besides, he’s had his eyes on you for a while now, I told you last year.”
Not just his eyes, Andromeda thought to herself, touching her arm, which still hurt.
“Oh no,” she said, sitting up. “Here he comes. Not a word.”
“If you don’t want me to say a word, then no more shutting us out,” Marcy warned, holding her finger up again.
“Fine,” Andromeda shushed her, stuffing her mouth again as Rabastan approached the table.
“Well well well,” he said with a sneer, “looks like another round of gossip in the Great Hall.”
He sat down and draped an arm over Andromeda’s shoulder, her eyes widening as she slowly chewed her food. She turned to him, gave him an awkward closed mouth smile, and turned back to her cereal.
“So, what’s new in the industry?” Rabastan asked with sarcasm, turning to Pru. “Have you decided to change your name for the twentieth time?”
“Shut up, Lestrange,” Pru mocked him, rolling her eyes as she poured herself a glass of orange juice.
Rabastan snickered at his own joke while the rest of the girls remained silent. Pru’s real name was Imperia, which she had changed their second year, claiming that no parent in their right mind named their child after an Unforgivable Curse, even if it were a letter off. She had changed her name to Deja, legally of course, through the Ministry of Magic, and changed it again during their sixth year to Pru. She had stuck with it so far, but the girls all knew she might impetuously petition to have it changed again.
“Look at him,” Rabastan sneered across the hall. Andromeda followed his gaze to find it resting on Peter Pettigrew, who sat next to Sirius at the Gryffindor table. “Just wait till I run into him one day, alone, without his bodyguards around to babysit him. I could take them too if I wanted.”
Andromeda internally rolled her eyes as he continued to express his egotistical demeanor to the entire Slytherin table. “Oh for goodness sake, Rabastan, it happened over a week ago. Can’t you move on already?”
“No, I can’t,” he brushed her off, and continued his ranting.
She let her thoughts trail off, losing herself in his words. She’d learned more than lying at the dinner table while growing up. She’d also taught herself to numb out people when she didn’t want to listen to them, and she’d grown quite adept at it.
She caught Sirius’s eyes across the hall and smiled at him, admiration burning in her chest for her cousin. She wished she could be more like him.
Her thoughts were interrupted when a figure blocked her view of Sirius. She looked up at him, her smile fading when she met his eyes. It was him. It was the boy she had walked into last week when she’d rushed out of the shrink’s office. She was sure of it. He stood tall, at least over six feet, his brown eyes locked onto hers, his fair messy hair hanging about. Andromeda didn’t notice that she’d dropped her spoon, or that he’d stopped awkwardly in the middle of the hall. She just let him hold her gaze.
For the second time that morning, she snapped out of her own head, turning to Rabastan. How many times had he called her name? Five, maybe six times?
“What are you playing at?” he asked, staring across the hall.
“I wasn’t,” she quickly assured him, stuffing her mouth again. “I didn’t sleep very well last night and I’ve been dozing in and out all morning.”
“Well I was just asking if you want to go to Hogsmeade with me on the next trip,” he asked, his question sounding more like a statement, or a fact.
She looked over the table at her friends, who were all avoiding both Rabastan and her eyes. They were loads of help.
“Sure,” she finally squeaked, turning away from him before stuffing more cereal in her mouth.
“Looks like you’re here already,” Rowle announced, making his presence clear. Crabbe, Goyle and Dolohov followed behind him, plopping down on the benches as the table rattled.
Pru sat up, running a hand through her hair as Rowle sat down beside Rabastan. He eyed her before turning to Rabastan.
“We’re having a meeting tonight in the dungeons. Let the others know when you see them,” he said in his husky voice that made Pru’s face turn red.
She had admitted at the end of their sixth year that she heavily fancied Rowle. According to her, he was the three B’s: big, bad, and burly. Not to mention she’d been lusting after him for the past three years. Of course, Pru had filled out in all the right places during the summer, and she seemed much more confident about approaching him. He turned his gaze to her again, holding it for a few moments before stacking a few loaves of toast onto his plate.
Andromeda was too shocked to acknowledge what was happening around her. She was still processing that she’d seen the boy from last week. Slowly and naturally, she glanced over at the Gryffindor table, only to find him looking at her while four Gryffindors, three boys and a girl, went on chattering about around him.
What if he approached her, inquiring about why she’d been talking to the school counselor? Then they would all know. Everybody would think she’d gone mad. She had to get out of there.
“Excuse me,” she said abruptly, setting down her goblet as she stood up.
“Where are you going?” Marcy asked.
“I don’t feel good,” she tried to act faint. “I’m going back to the dormitory.”
“Well we’ll come with you,” Marcy said, standing up with Xia and Pru.
“Will I see you later tonight?” Rabastan asked, staring at her intently.
“Maybe,” she smiled, trying not to choke. She looked across the hall again and met the boy’s eyes for what felt like the fifth time. “If I’m feeling better.”
She turned and headed down the hallway, the girls following behind her.
“What was all that about?” Marcy stopped her when they reached the entrance to the dungeons. “You were asleep at nine o’clock last night so don’t give me the ‘I didn’t sleep well’ squabble.”
“I just don’t want to be around Rabastan right now,” Andromeda followed her instinct, not wanting to tell Marcy about the boy. “I mean, did you see how he draped his arm around me, like he owned me?”
Marcy nodded feverishly in agreement, so she continued to complain about how annoying Rabastan was. It was true. He really had been audacious, assuming a relationship with her without her consent. She just left out the part about the boy across the hall who was staring at her because he recognized her from a therapy session. She sighed, internally babbling again.
“Why don’t you just tell him you’re not interested?” Marcy shrugged, crossing her arms. “I mean, you’re a Black. You don’t have to be with him if you don’t want to.”
“I know, I know,” Andromeda bit her lip. “But you know I’ve always been bad at saying no. And we’ve grown up together so our families are really close. My sister’s married to his brother!”
“Well then, this is the perfect time to practice,” Marcy cleared her throat. “Andromeda, will you accompany me to Hogsmeade on the next trip?”
Andromeda stifled a laugh at her friend’s attempt to impersonate Rabastan.
“Seriously, Andromeda,” Marcy said, trying to keep her face straight.
“Okay, okay,” Andromeda shook it off. “No, Rabastan, I won’t.”
“Because, I’m not interested in you.”
“But my sister is married to your brother-”
“Okay Marcy it’s not going to work like this. It’s different when it’s him. He has a way of convincing people to do what he wants. Besides, I don’t have to worry about talking to him tonight. Isn’t he going to a meeting or something?”
“Yeah, with Rowle,” Pru finally joined the conversation.
“Yeah,” Xia eyed her up and down, imitating Rowle’s interest from earlier. “I noticed that.”
“I think the entire bloody school noticed that,” Marcy rolled her eyes.
“Oh he wants me,” she whined, leaning against the wall and lifting her right foot against it. “I mean, did you see the way he was looking at me?”
“Pru!” Andromeda exclaimed, her eyes wide. “He just wants to shag you!”
“Then by all means,” she smiled pervertedly, running her hands excitedly through her hair.
“Be a lady,” Xia reprimanded her.
“I am being a lady,” Pru retorted angrily. “I’m embracing my womanliness. I’m going to seduce him.”
“Seduce him!” Marcy laughed. “And how are you going to do that?”
“I will…somehow,” she looked around indecisively. “It’ll be spontaneous. Just watch. All of you.”
She stomped off into the dungeons, obviously nettled by them ridiculing her. Pru was the baby of the group, and they let her know it, which usually resulted in her throwing a fit or two. They shrugged it off, knowing she’d come around later.
“Don’t worry, Andromeda,” Xia comforted her. “You don’t have to marry anyone you don’t want to.”
“You don’t know my family,” Andromeda laughed, slumping down against the wall. “What meeting are Rabastan and Rowle going to anyway?”
“What do you think?” Marcy raised a brow.
“Is it a Death Eater meeting?”
“No, it’s a cupcake party,” Marcy muttered sarcastically. “Of course it’s a Death Eater meeting! And there’s probably going to be an after party in the dungeons. I saw Crabbe loading up boxes of Firewhiskey this morning.”
“Well,” Andromeda started. “Let’s hope Peter Pettigrew stays as far away as possible tonight. We don’t want them hanging him upside down in a troll cage.”
Later that evening, Andromeda found herself standing outside Miss Faye’s office, leaning against the door. In five minutes, it would have been an exact week since she’d spoken to her. Miss Faye had asked her to come back again in a week, but Andromeda thought it had been a ridiculous gesture. Then why had she been standing outside her door for an hour? One more minute now. This was it. She shook her head. She had obviously come for a reason. Taking a deep breath, Andromeda knocked on the door three times.
Within seconds, the door was opened and Miss Faye stood under the arch, that familiar warm smile spreading across her face.
“Andromeda,” she smiled, stepping back so Andromeda could walk in. “I’m so glad you came.”
Andromeda smiled back, making her way over to the same sofa she’d sat on last week, with the silly gold fringes that had entertained her fingers.
“I wrote your name in my planner,” she explained, sitting down across from her and removing her spectacles. “I have to be honest though, I wasn’t sure you were coming.”
“I wasn’t sure either,” Andromeda smiled unsettlingly.
“What made you change your mind?” she asked, crossing her legs.
“I-I don’t know. I just needed to talk to someone I guess. Not that I don’t have people to talk to, but there are certain things I don’t like to talk about with people.”
“Do you feel comfortable talking about those things with me?”
“I’m not sure yet,” Andromeda bit her lip. “I honestly don’t know why I came.”
“Well why don’t we start off with you telling me how the past week has been for you,” Miss Faye leaned forward.
“It’s been fine I guess,” she shrugged. “Not unlike any other week.”
“What’s your mood been like?”
Andromeda frowned. “I’m not depressed if that’s what you’re asking.”
“Why do you think I implied that?”
“Mood sounded like moody which sound like sad, and, well…I’m not depressed or anything.”
“You can be sad without being depressed, Andromeda,” Miss Faye explained.
“Fine,” she said, frustrated with all her questions. “I’ve been sad, but I’ve also been happy.”
“Tell me about why you’ve been sad,” Miss Faye said, crossing her legs and leaning back.
Andromeda shut her eyes, trying to think hard. “Well, I was sad when I found out that my sister was interested in a Slytherin brute. I was sad when-” she stopped herself. She couldn’t tell her about the Pettigrew incident. No matter how confidential these sessions were, she would report them if there was any sort of abuse involved. “I always feel sad around Slytherins, except my friends.”
“You feel sad around people from your own house. I imagine you spend most of your time around Slytherins, so it sounds like a lot of sadness to me.”
“Slytherins are, for lack of better terms, cruel. Their day-to-day vocabulary consists of the two words Pureblood and Mudblood. There’s nothing else. No in between or balance, just black and white. Or maybe it’s just the Slytherins I’m around.”
“You talk about Slytherins as if you’re not one of them,” Miss Faye pointed out.
“I don’t know. My entire family has been in Slytherin for centuries. It only seems right that I am too. Besides, my family would kill me if it were otherwise. Sirius is the first who’s broken the tradition.”
“Sirius Black. My cousin. He’s a fourth year,” Andromeda explained.
“How did your family react to that?”
“I think my aunt Walburga threatened to disown him,” Andromeda tried not to laugh. “Sirius told me she cried in her room for an entire week.”
“I noticed that when you talked about your aunt’s reaction, you were holding back a smile,” Miss Faye smiled herself, shifting the position of her legs.
“Sirius and I always joke about our families. I feel the most comfortable with him,” Andromeda grinned genuinely, missing her cousin. “It’s because we have the most in common. We’re not like our families.”
“I see, and so you feel most connected with him because of that. That’s very understandable,” Miss Faye nodded. “Do you ever wonder what it might have been like if you were perhaps in Gryffindor as well?”
Andromeda’s eyes widened. “That would have been terrible. I mean, my sister Bellatrix would have…oh God, she would have forced the school to switch me into Slytherin. I don’t think I would have stood a chance.”
“I’m not asking about your sister or any of your family, for that matter. I’m asking about you. Just close your eyes and picture having been sorted into Gryffindor, or Ravenclaw, or Hufflepuff. No one’s opinion matters. How does it make you feel?”
How did she feel? If she were in Gryffindor, she would be surrounded by Purebloods, Half-bloods, and Muggle-borns. People in the other houses didn’t care about blood status, no one would judge her. She could say what she wanted, speak to who she wanted, act the way she wanted, and nobody would tell her she was humiliating her family or degrading her blood status.
“I feel…I feel like…it would have been easier to be myself. Nobody cares about that stuff in the other houses. People don’t treat each other differently because of it.”
“Can you clarify what you mean by ‘stuff’?”
“Blood status. It’s always been so serious in my family, and in Slytherin, but for the past two or three years it’s become like law, like a matter of life and death. I just don’t understand. They’re people too, you know?”
“Life and death?” Miss Faye asked, sitting up a little straight, her chin tilted up.
“I’m s-sorry,” Andromeda stammered, now realizing that she’d let slip a little more than she’d hoped. She’d become a little too comfortable that she hadn’t exercised any control over what words came out of her mouth. “I think I said too much.”
The door suddenly opened, and Andromeda froze. There he was again, the same boy. He stood there, tall, one hand in his pocket and the other hanging about loosely. He was wearing a black sweater with his black school slacks, his body lean.
Andromeda stood up and walked to the door, glancing at him for only a moment before lowering her head and leaving the office. She could feel his eyes on her as she turned into the hallway.
“Andromeda,” she heard Miss Faye call out. “I’m so sorry, he shouldn’t have walked in like that. Next week…”
Her voice faded as Andromeda’s footsteps grew louder. What had she been thinking, being so open? She wasn’t supposed to let anyone get that close. It was dangerous, not only for her but for whoever she let in. And it didn’t help that this tall messy haired boy kept showing up out of nowhere. She groaned. She was sure he knew who she was by now. He’d heard her name.
By the time she stopped walking, she was well out of breath. She kneeled down, placing her hands on her knees, panting as everything finally hit her. Last week was repeating itself. Every day was repeating itself. She wasn’t sure how much longer she could continue like this. After a few moments, and some very disturbing thoughts, she stood up and entered the dungeons, stopping beside a door when she heard voices.
“…has given his orders. We leave Saturday the next at midnight, through the Vanishing Cabinets. We slip out and we slip back in. Simple.”
She recognized Rowle’s voice, and after peeking through the crack of the door, was sure enough seeing him sitting at the head of the table.
“And what is this mission exactly?” Crabbe’s voice came this time, dry and dull.
“There have been a few families openly protesting against The Cause. Like I said, only a few, but their numbers are slowly growing now that they’re more comfortable speaking out. I have a list of names. We’re going to be paying some of them a nice friendly visit.” His tone was anything but nice and friendly, and it made Andromeda cringe.
“Are we torturing or killing?” Crabbe asked, and he sounded bored out of his mind. Andromeda felt her breath catch in her throat. She didn’t want to know what came next, but every muscle in her body was frozen in place.
“Mostly torturing, possibly killing any who continue to resist,” Rabastan spoke this time. “The Dark Lord himself recently killed a family of five who had been actively protesting against The Cause: mother, father, and three children. We’re going to face situations that are similar. It may not be easy, especially with children involved, but we have to remember these are our orders.”
Andromeda fell back against the wall, her hand covering her mouth. She shook her head in denial, eyes brimming with tears as shocked enveloped her. She couldn’t stay here; if they came out and saw her by the door they’d know she’d overheard everything. She left the dungeons and somehow found herself retracing her steps from last week, reaching the Astronomy Tower. She pushed the door open and stepped outside, letting her sobs fill the air. This time, there was no one to hear her: no gang of Slytherins, no music, no crowd of people she couldn’t stand to be around. It was her secret place, like all other times, where she came to get away from everyone.
Children. They were going to kill children. Rabastan, the man who wanted to marry her, was talking about killing children. How could he even think of marrying her and having children of his own? Her father and sister, she was sure, would be a part of these missions. They would be killing children. How could her father look in her eyes, in the eyes of his own child, and not see every child he mercilessly killed?
She walked over to the edge of the tower, bending her head over and staring down. She closed her eyes. Just for a moment, she imagined falling off, flying through the wind, free from everything. Free from pain, sadness, desperation…free from it all. How nice it would be, to not be. No longer a part of this sick world, full of sick people, with their sick, twisted thoughts.
She heard Miss Faye’s voice in the back of her mind. Life and death? Only death. Only if she knew.
She opened her eyes, wiping them, standing straight. But it was who she was. She didn’t have a choice. She was one of them, and she hated herself for it.
“Would you like a cigarette?”
She spun around, coming face to face with him. It was him. Again.
“Are you following me?” she snapped at him, her temper rising.
He laughed, looking sideways as he took another drag from his cigarette. He let out the smoke, sighing before turning back to her.
“Don’t flatter yourself,” he finally answered, looking her in the eye. “I was up here first.”
“I think I would have seen you if you were up here first,” she narrowed her eyes at him, crossing her arms defensively.
“I was standing in that corner over there,” he pointed with his free hand. “You ran out here sobbing and were about to jump off the edge.”
She could feel her face getting hot. “I was not going to jump off the edge.”
“That’s what it looked like,” he shrugged, taking another drag.
“Well everything isn’t always as it seems. I don’t owe you an explanation,” she snapped at him for the second time.
“I never asked for one.”
“Good,” she said firmly, walking over to the edge of the tower again. She placed her arms on the ledge and looked outwards at the sky. She heard him approaching, and then he was standing beside her and pulling something out of his pocket.
“Would you like a cigarette?” he offered again.
She glanced at the skinny little stick he offered her and huffed, “What a pathetic excuse for a cigar.”
“It’s a quicker smoke than a cigar,” he replied casually. “And it’ll kill me slower.”
“And here you are accusing me of trying to kill myself only moments ago.”
“We all choose our poison,” he half-assed a grin. “Besides, I bought these in a Muggle shop. They’re cheaper, about a dozen in a pack.”
“Are you Muggle-born?” she asked slowly, still not looking at him.
“Yeah I am. It’s what you Slytherins call Mudblood, isn’t it?”
She narrowed her eyes at him once more and he chuckled, offering her a smoke again.
“I don’t smoke,” she said, looking away across the school grounds.
“Of course you don’t,” he smiled to himself. “A lovely Slytherin lady like yourself would never touch a cigarette. It’s probably beneath you.”
She felt her jaw tighten at those words. A lovely Slytherin lady. As opposed to what?
“Give me that,” she snatched it out of his hand, sticking it in her mouth.
“It’s the other way actually. The white tip sticks out,” he chuckled again.
She flipped the stick and tapped her foot impatiently. “Well, this is the part where you mutter a spell so it lights.”
Shaking his head, he pulled out a lighter and flipped a switch, causing a flame to erupt at the tip. “I prefer…” he leaned forward, “to do it the Muggle way. Unless that’s a problem for you, of course.” He said that last part sarcastically, with a grin. He brought the lighter close to her face, staring stonily into her eyes as the cigarette lit.
She sucked in too fast, bursting into a fit of coughs as she dropped the cigarette.
“What…the hell…is the matter...with you?” she gasped in between coughs. “Are you trying to kill me?”
He picked it up off the floor. “You’re supposed to inhale slowly,” he chortled. “Like I said, not for a lady.”
She snatched it out of his hand again and stuck it back in her mouth, slowly letting it fill her lungs before realeasing it back out into the air. She didn’t have much experience smoking, except for the rare occasions of stealing a puff or two from one of her father’s cigars. Of course her mother had disapproved and so even that had discontinued. She could understand why it was appealing. It was soothing, the way the smoke settled inside her. If it weren’t for the smell…
She turned to see him watching her as he exhaled smoke.
“Not bad for your first time,” he snickered, leaning over the ledge next to her.
“Who said it’s my first time?” she asked with attitude.
“Oh clearly you’re an expert,” he made a sarcastic bow, earning a scowl from her.
“It’s definitely my last time,” she muttered under her breath, but loud enough for him to hear.
“It’s a nasty habit, I admit.”
She turned her head and stared, this time getting a good look at him. “What are you doing up here anyway?”
“I should ask you the same question.”
“You probably were following me,” she sneered, placing the cigarette between her lips.
“You really are a Slytherin,” he sneered back. “All self-righteous and shit.”
“I am not self-righteous,” she answered heatedly, facing him. “You don’t know the first thing about me you M-”
She stopped herself. She had almost said it.
He smiled at her, a dark smile, one that had I-was-right-about-you written all over it.
“Mudblood, right? Isn’t that what you were going to call me?” he scoffed, not offended in the slightest.
He flicked the rest of his cigarette over the edge of the tower, walking over to the door. He opened it, turning to her one last time.
“It’s Ted, by the way. My name.”
She didn’t look at him, staring over the ledge instead. Her gaze was unrelenting, until she heard the door shut. She took one last drag of the cigarette he had given her before throwing it over the edge, watching it as it fell down and faded into the darkness. Her name, like the smoke, hung in her throat.
Andromeda, she wanted to say. My name is Andromeda.
A/N: I hope you enjoy reading this chapter as much as I enjoyed writing it. I was super nervous about Ted and Andromeda meeting for the first time. I'm so lame hahaha! I can't wait to write the next chapter! Review please review review review!
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