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Chapter 63 : I'm Not One For Love Songs, And I Want Everything For You
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I'm not one for love songs
The way [you're] livin', makes you feel like giving up but you don't
And I want everything for you
The second of May, in the year 1979, was a day of many things. Okay, more like two - however, they were big things. Firstly, it was the first time I would get to see my bestest mates in three months. Secondly, it was the day (exactly one year previous) that I broke up with Sirius. In fact, I hardly remembered the second thing.
But at the moment, the first thing was far more important. “They’re coming, they’re coming!” I shouted to Darren, skipping happily after him on our way to the Great Hall for breakfast.
“No,” Darren said, probably exasperated with me by that point; I’d been in that state of excitement for a week. “But word on the street is you got Sirius-.”
"Hey! I'm in a fabulous mood right now! You better quit it. Say no more! I'm so excited!"
Then Stephen stepped in. “I hear you got Sirius really excited.” I went to hit him and he ducked. “What? You only said that Darren couldn’t say anything, not me.”
“Oh, just shut up, the both of you. Can’t you let me be excited in peace?”
They looked at each other for a moment before saying, in unison, “Nope.”
“Shove off,” I said irritably, despite my thrilled mood.
“Aww, come on, Anna. We’re just playing with you,” Darren punched me in the shoulder.
I wanted to be angry, but I couldn’t help but smile. “I know, I know. So, what shall we do as we excitedly await the arrival of the Marauders?”
“Let’s have Quidditch practice,” suggested Darren. Stephen nodded in consent.
Psh! He would side with Darren.
“Fine,” I grumbled. We all got up from the table and headed up to the dorms to throw some practice clothes on. Mind you, the only reason I agreed with Darren was so that I had something to do to concentrate my excitement on. Otherwise, the day would drag on far too slowly.
“Alright, El Capitan,” I said, five minutes later, all ready with my broom thrown over my shoulder. “To the pitch ”
“To the pitch,” he agreed.
We walked through the castle, chatting idly about Quidditch plans; our victory this year needed to be just as epic as the last one.
We exited the castle casually through the front doors, and I was just beginning to make my way down the steps when I saw him.
“Sirius!” I screeched. I increased my pace ten-fold, consequently tripping and rolling down the remaining ten steps.
“Merlin’s pants, Anastasia! You’re as much of a mess as you were when we left you ” Sirius exclaimed, running towards me and laughing as I clambered to my feet.
But he sure wasn’t. Somehow, Sirius was even better looking than before. Perhaps it was the prickly shadow of stubble on his face. Or, maybe it was that looked even stronger and more protective than before (probably due to whatever escapade he had gone on for the Order.) Or, possibly, it just that age old saying: Absence makes the heart grow fonder.
By the time my mind had finished processing Sirius’ sex appeal, I had already launched myself at him and hooked my legs around his waist. I’m sure I cut off a great deal of his oxygen. I probably would have hugged him like that for the next hour, but I saw Remus and James approaching in the distance.
“Guys!” I cried, and detached myself from Sirius so that I could run across the lush green grasses and greet them each.
We were all having dinner in the Great Hall when an owl swooped down and dropped something in front of James. “That’s odd,” he said. “There’s never mail at this time - especially for people who don’t go to this school.”
He picked up the scroll of parchment and poked it gingerly with his wand, as if afraid it might explode or something. Nothing happened. He looked and me and the Marauders and shrugged before unrolling it and beginning to read.
From the moment his eyes touched the parchment, he was frowning. We all watched his eyes continue downwards, and the more he read, the more upset he grew. When he was done, he threw down the scroll of parchment and stared at the table. His jaw was set, and he was biting his bottom lip so hard that he was drawing blood - I could see a faint red rim forming around his teeth.
“James? Mate?” Sirius tentatively put his hand on James’ shoulder; he violently shook Sirius off and said nothing.
Although the rest of the Great Hall continued to chatter incessantly, our little group of six had gone completely quiet. Sirius reached worriedly for the parchment that had gotten James in a way that none of us had seen before.
His reaction was identical to James'. A frown at first, and his face steadily grew more distraught. My eyes darted back-and-forth between James and Sirius. James was still staring intently at the table, and I could see a small muscle in his jaw twitching.
Sirius, unlike James, didn’t try to bite his lip off, or pull a muscle in his jaw. He roughly got up from his seat, knocking a few things over and fast-walked out of the Great Hall.
I looked at Remus curiously. He shrugged. It was my turn to pick up the letter.
I was hoping, James, that contacting you at this short time before your wedding would be a positive thing. I didn’t want to write you under these circumstances . . .
Yesterday, your mother died. As you know, she’s been growing steadily weaker since the summer, and it was only a matter of time before the inevitable happened.
The next few lines of the letter were mostly illegible; spots that looked suspiciously like teardrops blurred the words.
I want you, Sirius, Remus, Peter and Anna to attend your mother’s wake - I’ll be writing Dumbledore to excuse Anna from her classes. Lily is, of course, invited to attend as well; I was thinking mostly of Anna and the guys because you all had such a close relationship with your Mum.
The wake will be three days from today, on the fifth of May. James - remember, your mother and I both love you no matter where we are - it’s a matter of time before I fall into the same fate as your mother. We best be prepared.
“What?” Remus asked, worried.
“Mrs. Potter died.” I got a chill down my spine just saying it. Mrs. Potter had been such a motherly figure to me - I was sad, but more than that, I was terrified. I’d never experienced the death of a loved one before; it was all too real.
At that point, James got up in a manner similar to Sirius, although his roughness seemed a bit more intentional. He got up and stormed out. We watched him kick the door on his way out.
Remus’ eyes widened in shock at the news and James’ reaction.
“Mrs. Potter was Sirius’ Mum, too,” I marvelled. “He’ll be a mess.”
Remus and I sat silently, not knowing what to do. I looked up towards the Head Table, and saw Dumbledore watching us intently.
Of course he knows. He always knows.
“You take James. He’s angry, and way more destructive than Sirius, I think. I’ll go find Sirius.” He nodded and we got up, exiting quickly.
I knew exactly where to find Sirius. I only hoped he would be there; to have any extra time alone with my thoughts would not be good at all.
Mrs. Potter is dead, my mind screamed at me.
I wanted to scream back at it; why it would focus in on a tragic event and torture me, I didn’t know.
Because that’s what happens when tragedy happens. You wouldn’t know that - you’ve been lucky enough to have nothing wrong with your life what-so-ever.
But why does it work like that? Why?
At least my brain was silenced by that question. I tried to keep my mind off death (which suddenly seemed like a real possibility) and focus on the way the spring and the trees smelt. The sweet smell of flowers that surrounded me; the faint, pleasant smell that was coming from the lake. I concentrated on the twittering of the birds that flew around in the evening light and the slight nip in the air.
As I closed in on that place the Marauders and I had found all those years ago, I was shocked to not find Sirius there. I had been sure that’s where he would go; it was where I had run to the previous year when I had a mental breakdown, and where we’d all been running to for years whenever we had a problem.
As I walked back to the castle, my brain was busy thinking about where in the world Sirius could be.
The Room of Requirement!
As soon as I thought it, I knew I was right. I raced the remaining distance up to the castle, and zipped through the secret passageway that led directly to the corridor across from the Room of Requirement.
As I stood across from the blank space of wall, I knew that I would not be able to find Sirius until I knew what room he’d gone to.
What the hell? Who made this stupid crappy rule ? You can’t find someone - what the hell is up with that?
However, I soon realized that that was the point of the room, and stopped blaming the extremely useful room for my own misfortune.
Maybe if the room knows I’m trying to help him . . .
Maybe . . .
I glared at the empty space of wall and decided that it was, at least, worth a try.
I need to find Sirius so that I can help him. I need to find Sirius so that I can help him. I need to find Sirius so that I can help him.
To my surprise and delight a door appeared right in front of my eyes. It was suspiciously familiar - dark wood, with a simple pattern and an old, brass doorknob. I couldn’t place exactly where I’d seen the door, only that I’d seen it many times, and other ones identical to it.
As soon as I stepped inside, I knew where I was, and why Sirius had gone there; it was his bedroom at the Potter house. As soon as I closed the door behind me, I heard the distinct sounds of someone crying. I didn’t think Sirius had noticed me yet - it wasn’t too late to escape and avoid the situation.
Don’t even think about it. I swear to Godric, I will abandon you if you abandon him!
I stepped towards Sirius; I needn’t have worried. There really was no risk - I hadn’t really, seriously considered skipping out on Sirius.
I love that guy - you couldn’t pay me all the money in the world to leave him hanging.
I walked tentatively and quietly across the room, observing as I went. The theme of his room was Gryffindor; I loved it, and its familiarity. The walls were painted a crisp maroon, and the top and bottom were bordered with a sparkly gold. A large, animated lion was painted on one of the walls, and a huge ‘Gryffindor’ banner hung above it. On one wall was a large, stone fireplace. On the wall across from it was his four-poster bed; like the ones in the dormitories, only bigger. On the last wall was a collection of Wimbourne Wasps Quidditch memorabilia. Posters, banners, and old calendars adorned the entire wall. The exception was a single, solitary Holyhead Harpies poster. I laughed, remembering when we had gone to Diagon Alley and gotten it - Sirius had been ranting about how terrible the team was (but how good-looking the players were) for nearly ten minutes straight when we happened upon a poster of the team in bathing suits. Why there was a Quidditch team in bikinis, we didn’t know, but Sirius bought the poster and proudly displayed it amidst his favourite team.
Returning to the present, I walked to the other side of Sirius’ bed, where his hulking figure was hunched over onto itself, and shaking.
“Sirius?” I said quietly.
He looked up and quickly looked away, wiping his eyes. He didn’t say anything.
“It’s okay, Sirius. I don’t care; you don’t have to pretend that you’re not sad.”
I collapsed onto the floor next to him and snuggled up close to his side. “Are you alright?”
He didn’t answer.
“Is it bothering you that I keep talking?”
He didn’t say ‘yes’ or ‘no.’
“Do you want me to go away?”
He shook his head vigorously and grabbed my hand, which had been lying uselessly at my side. This time, I persuaded him to uncurl from his ball, and got him to look up at me. His beautiful, youthful grey eyes were more upset than I’d ever seen them. His thick, black lashes were shiny with tears, and a few drops had accumulated on his cheeks.
I kissed him on the forehead. If he didn’t want to talk, the least I could do was sit there and be helpful by being close.
Sirius had ceased crying (which, admittedly, I was thankful for) and his breathing was returning to normal when, all of a sudden, he retracted into his little ball again and his body racked and convulsed with a new set of sobs.
I sat there, trying to put my arms around him despite the fact that they didn’t reach all the way around. I didn’t know what else I could do to help. Here was a nineteen year old boy, brought to a complete and utter emotional breakdown by his mother’s death. I didn’t know how to handle it, but I was amazed.
I loved it about him, I think, that he was so compassionate. I simply wasn’t like that; it wasn’t my fault. But Sirius was just the total opposite. His emotional capacity was that of a ton, whereas mine was more like a teaspoon.
And as Sirius sobbed into his knees, a terrible, terrible thought occurred.
Seeing Sirius all emotional like that - crying, and all - made me want to kiss him.
All the sadism of the thought aside, it was a terrible, terrible time to come to that realization.
“Sirius,” I whispered. “You don’t have to crawl up into a ball.” I tried pulling at his arms to get him to at least sit up. But Sirius was a tough nut to crack. Sighing, I scooted over so that I was sitting on my knees and facing him. I finally pried his arms from around his knees and put myself in their place.
I wrapped my arms tightly around Sirius and either he didn’t notice or didn’t care that he was no longer curled up in his fetal position. He sobbed roughly into my shoulder. I had never before understood how someone could cry so much that it would actually begin to wet an article of clothing. But Sirius did. I wasn’t exactly sure how crying out sadness worked, but I just waited it out until he stopped again.
Eventually, he did, but I still didn’t release him. I held my arms tightly around his shoulders, enjoying being in his grasp again.
“Sirius?” I asked, once again. “Are you okay?”
He shook his head. “No.” I was surprised and taken aback at how hoarse and raspy his voice was. “But I will be . . .
“Anastasia - thank you. I know that it must have been really difficult for you to come up here and sit through this.”
“Sirius, I would run through the fucking Acromantula infestation in the back of the Forbidden Forest if it was enough to make you feel better. You’re, like, my everything.”
I was fucking terrified of spiders. So that was saying something. And Sirius knew it, too, despite the semi-joking manner I had said it in.
Still hugging, he kissed my cheek. “I never knew how hard losing a Mum was,” he confessed. “How is James doing?”
I shrugged. “He tried to break the table, I think. He was very angry; I sent Remus after him.”
Sirius laughed. It wasn’t exactly a happy laugh, but at least it wasn’t a fake one. “Come here, dumbarse,” he said, before kissing me chastely on the lips.
But that one, chaste kiss, changed everything.
"Anna, shut up! We have a problem! I think there were remnants of a few potions on that table - and one of them is Veritaserum!"
Oh, well I suppose this explains the babbling like an idiot - not that I don’t do that normally, but this is a different kind of babbling.
. . . This could be a problem.
"Okay, calm down," Darren warned, being uncharacteristically helpful. "We have to keep you from blurting out any deep, dark secrets that you have that none of us want to know.
"I have nothing to hide," I told Darren.
"You want Sirius to know what you’re thinking?"
"I’m going to tell him anyway," I explained.
"Do you want to end up telling him things you don’t even know you’re thinking?"
Wow . . . That could be dangerous. You know how volatile your mind is, Anna.
". . . That would be bad," I admitted.
"Exactly," Darren exclaimed.
"So what do we do?" I said frantically, completely ignoring the instructions that Slughorn was giving on the potion we were to be completing the next time we had double.
"Uh," Darren stuttered around, thinking. I know First I’ve got to take a swipe of this table; we don’t know what other potions are all over this thing.
"How do you reverse the effects of Veritaserum? It’s probably a bad idea if I meet up with Sirius while I’m still on this stuff. We might both end up learning stuff about me."
Darren riffled discreetly through his back before extracting a clean scrap of parchment. He swiped it over the desk in the spot I had laid my head earlier, folded it up, and put it in his pocket. "Anna, we don’t know what other dangerous potions have been spilt on here; we have bigger problems than you babbling like an idiot."
"You know," I blurted, "you always had a stick up your arse."
"Go cry about it to Sirius," he drawled.
"Maybe I will. He’s so cool, I like him so much." Well, see, my thoughts were exactly as I had thought they were; I like Sirius. Nothing more.
By that point, Darren seemed to be ignoring me. I couldn’t exactly blame him, though. I probably wasn’t the best companion at the moment. Under his breath, he muttered, "Come on, bell. Come on, bell. Ring."
And it did. When the bell rang, he grabbed my wrist and dragged me roughly from the dungeon. He didn’t tell me where we were going, or why, but I didn’t ask, on the chance that he would become frustrated and no longer want to help me. Which would suck.
Instead of taking me up the stairs that would lead to the Entrance Hall, he pulled me around a corner I had never been before. There were a series of doors that looked exactly like the one to that lead to the Potions classroom; old, decrepit, liable to fall apart easily. Perhaps, even more so. "Come on," he urged.
He pulled me into the first door we came to. My hands flew to my ears as the door creaked. It was a high-pitched, unpleasant sound. My first thought was that we were back in the classroom, but then I realized that we weren’t. The cauldrons and desks in this room were far more dusty, and the room had an overall unused feeling to it.
"Okay, Anna, sit here and try to not spill all your secrets out. I won’t talk to you, seeing as that triggers it. Do you think you can sit quietly here for an hour or so while I analyze these potions?"
"No, Mr. Smart Guy." I couldn’t have lied if I tried. Besides, Darren should have known better.
Darren heaved a sigh. "Well, then. Anna, I’m sorry, but this is for your own good."
"Nooo-" I cried, just as Darren flourished his wand. The rest of my cry was cut off; Darren had used a silencing charm on me . . .
Stupid little bitch.
I spent the hour twiddling my thumbs (surprisingly entertaining,) pacing the dungeon, and hovering over Darren’s shoulder. It annoyed him a lot.
"Okay, wow." The strip of parchment that Darren had dropped into the cauldron a half hour earlier was now covered in different blotches of color. "Okay, well, on that table that you decided to inhale," Darren paused, presumably to mutter to himself about what an idiot I was, "was some Veritaserum, some sort of memory-disabling potion, a Swelling Solution, and Euphoria."
"What’s Euphoria? And why isn’t my face swelling? And why isn’t my memory disabling, and why-"
"Anna! Shut up!"
"Look, Anna, I don’t know why your face isn’t swelling and why your memory is still working. And I can’t even tell if the Euphoria has had any effect because that’s just how you always are and I’m not exactly sure when the Veritaserum is going to wear off, because I don’t even know how much you inhaled. I didn’t even know you could get the effects of Veritaserum from inhalation."
"You worry a lot," I chided. "Come on, we’re missing, uhhh - wait, I don’t care what class we’re missing. What am I talking about? Ha !" I laughed.
I leaned back on a desk and was careful not to put my face on it. Despite my aloof outlook on the situation, I wasn’t exactly eager to have other unidentified potions swirling around my lungs.
We sat around for another half hour before Darren turned to me and said, "Okay, Anna, I’m going to test you and see if you’ve still got the Veritaserum effects."
"So, Anna what do you think of Sirius?"
I like him. I like him a lot. He’s probably one of my favourite people. "I love him. And I couldn’t live without him."
Darren’s eyes widened and his mouth opened in shock. My eyes widened and my mouth opened in shock.
A shocked cry burst from my lips, "Oh my- "
Oh my Godric. Oh my fucking Godric.
I immediately pulled away from Sirius’ embrace and scuttled backward on my hands as if Sirius was a mass-murderer, rather than my best mate.
Oh. My. God. What the hell was that?
That was your memory being triggered after you accidentally ingested a botched potion.
And all of a sudden, I could remember it all - that whole Potions class with Darren and the crisis afterwards.
“Anastasia? Are you okay?” Sirius didn’t move towards me; he looked rather terrified, actually.
“I - I - I . . .” I couldn’t make anything come out of my mouth.
Do I really love Sirius? What the hell is going on, mind?
And of course, when I finally wanted those little know-it-all voices in the back of my head, none of them saw fit to pop in.
“I - I love you. That’s it; I don’t even know what the fuck is going on, but I love you ”
Sirius looked bewildered. “Anas-”
Sirius didn’t even have a chance; I was on top of him and kissing him before he could even question me, and before I even had time to think about it.
However, I was ripped back to reality when Sirius pulled me off of him. “Anastasia, you’d better explain whatever the hell is going on right now. Because I need to figure out whether you’re possessed or not, and exactly how much psychiatric help you need.”
Once I got my thoughts (somewhat) in order they all made sense. Of course I loved Sirius - how could I not see it before? I loved it when he held me. I loved it when he kissed me. I loved it when he taunted me, joked with me, and confided in me. I just plain loved him, and I wanted him.
Why didn’t I see this before - it’s the most obvious thing.
“I love you,” I said simply. Perhaps he wouldn’t question my mental health as much if I didn’t act like I was stark raving mad. “I love you and I want to be with you.”
Despite my calmness, Sirius continued to look at me like I was stark raving mad. “Who put something in your drink?”
I rolled my eyes and took a deep breath. I took Sirius’ hands in mine, and it was a plus that he didn’t pull away or cringe. “I love you, Sirius. I’ve loved you for quite a while; it just took me forever to figure it out. Sirius, you’re going to be my best mate for my entire life, but that’s not going to be enough. I want to hug you, I want to kiss you, I want to shag your bloody brains out, and I want to do it for the rest of my life.”
This time, it was Sirius’ turn to jump me. Sirius learned forward and more forward while we kissed. My back was completely against the ground and my legs were sticking out at odd angles from under him - I forgot how much I had missed being kissed by Sirius.
And it felt right - completely right. When I had hooked up with Damon over the summer, it had been fun; our little escapades were dirty, and wrong, and it was good.
But being with Sirius felt great beyond belief, and that was really good.
Sirius had propped himself up on his hands and was kissing me in a way that seemed to be trying to make up for the past year. My hands were up and down Sirius’ arms, on his stomach - all over. Occasionally, I’d pause of kiss up and down his stomach. He took a break and began to kiss and suckle my neck.
“Anastasia,” he rasped. The way his voice came out just sent me even further into the mood. I was way past the point of no return. “Anastasia - if we don’t stop now, about thirty seconds from now I won’t be able to stop.” He stopped for a moment and looked down at me.
“Shut up, and kiss me - I hit that point about a minute ago.” Sirius, in a swift move that I wouldn’t have thought possible, jumped up to his feet and picked me up. At the same time I hooked my legs roughly around his waist and he stumbled backwards until he hit one of the posts on his bed. He changed his angle a bit so that we fell back onto the bed. Sirius’ shoes were already off, and I kicked off my slip-ons with ease.
Sirius and I were both breathing heavily, and I wasn’t even thinking about what was sure to come next, because being in the moment was too perfect. I was sitting on top of Sirius with one leg on either side of him. I un-buttoned his shirt from the bottom up, kissing his stomach once for each button.
And from there, we wasted no time - it took less than a minute total for every single article of clothing to be laying somewhere around the perimeter of my bed.
Lying there with Sirius, just us and our skins, enlightened me for the first time just how much bigger than me he was. I was absolutely dwarfed by him. I was sure - as I kissed Sirius and used my hands to reacquaint myself with all the contours of his body - that it would occur to me the next morning, just how funny our more than 7 stone, and nearly half a metre difference in size was.
But right then and there, I didn’t give a flying fuck about anything but Sirius.
“Anastasia. You’re sure?”
I smiled up at the guy I loved. (It felt quite good to admit that.)
“I thought you said you weren’t going to be able to stop?”
He smiled as well. “I’m not; I thought I’d just double-check for decency purposes.”
“Because everyone knows I’m such a lady and all.”
“You’re my lady.”
“And you’re my lady.”
Sirius sneered at me. “Watch it, or you won’t be getting any.”
“Oh, just shut up.” And I kissed him once again.
A/N2: See the above chapter . . . Nuff said . . . :D
A/N4: On another awesome note, I've submitted the first chapter of 'Acrimony.' The rest of the chapters should follow in the next two weeks. Give it a look see, if you're interested in seeing Anna from a different point of view; it might change a few things. (Or, you might still love her as much as I do.) :D
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