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The Complicated Life of Mirabelle Rose by Ginny_RED_Potter
Chapter 13 : A Risk Worth Taking?
 
Rating: MatureChapter Reviews: 21


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Chapter 13~ A Risk Worth Taking? 


The next morning, I woke up with a headache that made me wonder whether an elephant had been sitting on it all night. I trudged over to my bathroom mirror and groaned. The curls from my up-do last night were still intact but smushed on one side of my head at strange angles because I’d slept on them. I’d also, out of fatigue from the night’s events, neglected to remove my make up resulting in the raccoon look this morning. I needed a shower, badly before my date with Rabastan today.

During our ‘romantic’ walk around the Minister’s Manor, Rabastan had complained that we hadn’t spent any time together this holiday.

“We’ve seen each other every night,” I managed to choke out a laugh, though my mind was somewhere else entirely. (Fine, I’ll freely admit, it was back in the ballroom with Sirius and his stupid demands.)

He wrinkled his nose and insisted, “Family obligation balls don’t count. I mean we haven’t gone out on a real, non-Hogsmeade date. Just the two of us.”

“Well, whose fault is that?” I teased him, quirking one eyebrow up and smirking. Merlin, I wanted to go back inside already.

He grinned, “Hey, it’s the modern age. You could ask me you know.”

“Yes,” I smiled. “But I won’t because I’m old fashion.”

“You are not!” he laughed. “You’re the biggest feminist I know!”

The sad part was that this was completely true. Purebloods weren’t too big on the whole equal-rights thing. Not that we women were oppressed or treated like second class; we were just expected to know our place. The whole bloody “seen not heard” nonsense.

“Yes, but I don’t make the first move in relationships,” I informed him. Not a lie. I mean, look how long I’d been waiting for Sirius to make a move. Too bad he made it too late. It would have been helpful if he’d have made the move before running away from home.

“Oh, I see,” he attempted a serious face but the grin on his lips shattered the effect. “So you’re a selective feminist.”

Had this been Sirius, I would’ve punched him in the shoulder or laughed and made some smart arse comment. Instead, I just glared, letting a small smile curl my lips, and returned to the original topic of conversation.

“So where do you want to go and when?” I asked, hating how submissive it sounded coming out of my mouth. I was definitely not a selective feminist.

“I was thinking, a day shopping in Diagon Alley and then dinner at this new restaurant that opened or maybe a picnic in the park by your house.”

My stomach curled in revulsion at the idea of going to the park Sirius and I had met in so many times to get away from our insane families. What if he wanted to sit near our place? It did have several choice trees that people liked to sit under on nice days. I couldn’t handle that on my first legitimate date with my boyfriend. It would be like Sirius himself was standing over me, taunting my attempt at a relationship.

“It’s too cold out for picnics,” I told him practically.

Not a lie. It was too cold.

“Diagon Alley it is then,” he grinned.

“Good. I need to stop in Flourish and Blotts anyway-“

He cut me off with a groan. “Not book shopping! On our date? No books, Mira, please! You’re not going to read on our date too are you?”

Sirius always went book shopping with you. The Andromeda in my head whispered, as if I hadn’t already been thinking it.

I was more bothered by his protests than I should’ve been. Not everyone liked books the way I did. I shouldn’t be so upset that Rabastan didn’t understand my fascination with the written word.

Sirius understood, the Andromeda voice reminded me.

I mentally glared at her for the unhelpful comments and put on a pouty face for my boyfriend. “Fine. No books.” It felt like a little part of me died just saying the words.

I tried to put all the implications of this simple little conversation out of my head as the warm water rolled down my back in the shower. I tried not to think about Rabastan or Sirius or my strange Andromeda voice but my brain just wouldn’t quit.

It went round and round in the most dizzying circle ever conceived. Would my date go well? Were Rabastan and I a good couple? Was I fooling myself? How long would this pureblood act last for me? Would I last until seventh year at least? Would I be able to get out of it by then? What place had Sirius been talking about? Was I going to go meet him at the start of term like he’d ordered? What did he want to discuss so badly? Was he going to kiss me again? Was I going to let him? Were we going to get caught together? What was Andromeda’s voice doing in my head? What was the real Andromeda doing right now? Were she and Ted still together? Was she happy? Over and over and over again until I could barely stand anymore.

When I stepped out of the shower I was all wrinkly. I dried myself off with my wand, put on the outfit I’d picked out the night before and the high-heeled boots I’d filched from Rosalie and curled my hair. I didn’t bother with very much makeup, just eyeliner and lip-gloss, because I felt like I’d been wearing a whole new face at every single ball this week.

“MIRA, SWEETHEART! RABASTAN IS HERE!” I heard my mother call sweetly from the first floor. I could almost hear the anticipation of wedding bells and grandchildren in her voice.

“I’LL BE DOWN IN A MOMENT!” I called back. I took a few deep breaths and checked myself in the mirror. I certainly looked the part of the loving girlfriend eager to go on her first legitimate date with her handsome boyfriend, if only I could make myself feel it.

I reached the top of the stairs and stopped. It may have been because of my handsome boyfriend or it may have just been the daunting task of walking down stairs in Rosalie’s boots but I suddenly felt my stomach turn uneasily.

I didn’t feel relief when I reached the bottom of the stairs, nor when we left the watchful eyes of my doting mother. All I could feel was my stomach crawling its way up my esophagus. When we got to the restaurant- a cozy little place, not far from Diagon Alley- it only got worse.

The hostess eyed me with distaste as Rabastan snaked his arm around my waist and told her that we would like a table for two. From what I could tell, she had mastered the spell that Nora had tried to teach me in third year. It was a spell that made your hair change colors with your mood. I was suddenly glad I’d never managed it, not only because my mother would have murdered me when she found out but also because I suddenly saw the disadvantage of displaying one’s mood. The hostess’s short inverted bob turned a delightful shade of sour-apple green.

Despite her obvious resentment, she put us in a cozy little booth table. I wasn’t sure whether I liked this or not. It seemed too intimate for a first date. I was uncomfortable with the fact that no one in the restaurant was likely to see us.

“Your server will be right with you,” the hostess said, a bit too cheerfully.

“So, what do you think so far?” he smiled, gesturing to our surroundings.

“I think that hostess better watch it or she’ll be getting my wand up her-“

His laughter interrupted my threat, “I meant about the restaurant.”

I pretended to consider this before shrugging, “It’s nice.”

Nice?” His nose wrinkled.

“Yes, nice,” I laughed. “I’m not going to wildly praise it before I’ve even tried the food!” I told him like the stuck up princess I was born to be.

He laughed again, “Touché, m’love.”

I suppressed a shudder at the endearment and turned to the server, who had arrived just in time. I suspected she’d been listening. Most likely the hostess had gushed to her about my boyfriend before she’d sent her over and, from the look on her face, Rabastan did not disappoint.

“Shall we order some then?” Rabastan asked, grinning at me the way the waitress was grinning at him.

“What can I do for you?” she asked with a suggestive sparkle in her eye.

I felt a flare of annoyance as she undressed my boyfriend with her dull brown eyes and another when he ordered for both of us without even asking me what I wanted. Did he think me incapable of deciding for myself? Was I going to take it lying down? No. No, I most certainly was not.

The waitress left us and I prepared to tear into him but before I could say a single cross word he grinned that wicked grin of his and said, “What will you do to her if you use your wand to impale the other one?”

I had to laugh at this, it was so typically Rabastan.

Feminism forgotten, I teased him back and the conversation flowed on easily from there. We laughed over our dinner, which was surprisingly delicious, and he deflected each and every flirtatious advance the very forward waitress through his way which made me happy.

We went for a walk after dinner and I began to think that perhaps I was making the right choice in denying my love for Sirius and choosing Rabastan instead. We had fun together, my family approved and he was intensely attractive. Maybe I could get over the rest of it. Maybe I didn’t have to leap off of that cliff and lose everything I’d ever known. Maybe I didn’t have to follow Sirius’s example. Maybe this wouldn’t be as hard as I thought. Maybe-

“Ah! Shit!” Rabastan hissed in pain.

“What? What’s wrong?” I said in a panicky voice. Then I saw that he was holding his left arm like it was broken. My eyebrows knit together but I tried not to let the ice cold horror that was running through my veins show on my face. I wasn’t supposed to know why my boyfriend always wore long sleeves. I wasn’t supposed to know what the sting in his arm right now meant.

The only reason I did know was because of Sirius. How he knew about the Dark Marks though, I had never asked. I wanted to know as little as possible about this particular subject.

“Are you not feeling well? Do we need to go back home?” I asked him, trying to act appropriately. How did a normal girl act when her boyfriend was actually sick?

“Yeah, I think we need to go.” He said, breathing deeply and straightening back out. “C’mon.”


***

Three hours later, I paced the floor of my bedroom impatiently. The second we’d gotten to my house Rabastan and my brothers had left together and my mind started spinning. Why did he need them now? What did he have them doing? Would they come back? And, more importantly, did I want them to?

The past few hours had made me re-evaluate things. I knew that no matter how easy it was to get along with Rabastan and how attracted I was to him, I could not get over this. I could not feign ignorance and live amongst people who stood for everything I loathed for the rest of my life. This would be exactly as hard as I thought. I couldn’t stand to think of what my boyfriend (it left a bad taste in my mouth just thinking the word) was out doing. What innocents was he hurting? Would I read of the havoc he was wreaking in the Prophet tomorrow? Or was it a lower key mission? More importantly, did it matter? No, it didn’t. I didn’t care how minor his and my brothers’ mission might be. The point was that they were on one to begin with.

Finally I heard a thump and a fair amount of shouting downstairs. My heart leapt into my throat and I rushed down the long grand staircase.
The blood was the very first thing I saw. Rabastan and Milo were both covered in it. A small vindictive part in the back of my mind was pleased when I noted that it was all their own blood.

My cousin Rosalie had arrived while I was upstairs, and while my aunts and mother showed my father and brother where to lay the injured boys and prepared to treat their injuries, she and my future sister-in-law played the role of overly emotional females who sob and scream in crisis instead of actually helping. I stood frozen in the doorway until my mother ordered me to hold Rabastan’s hand while she treated his broken bones.

I did as I was told, trying not to think about the blood that was getting on me because of it and straining my ears to hear as my brother told my father and Rabastan’s (who I assume had just apparated here, though the sound of his entrance was no doubt drowned out by all of the commotion) what had happened in subdued tones.

We almost had it.”

But?”
But the Order got it first,” Markus said gravely. “We split up because we weren’t sure who had it. Avery, Rabastan and Milo followed Potter and Black. Malfoy, Bella and I went after Longbottom and Dearborn.” He took a deep breath and shook his head wearily, “Potter and Black had it.” 

Potter and Black had it.
Sirius. My stomach rolled and heaved, attempting to eject the dinner I’d enjoyed with his attacker just hours earlier.

What had Sirius been fighting Death Eaters? Had he been hurt as badly as my brother and Rabastan? What the hell was ‘the order’? And what did they get that my boyfriend’s boss wanted so badly?

My thoughts swirled dizzily and I suddenly felt very light-headed. Rabastan had been chasing Sirius, fighting him. It made me uneasy just to picture. What had the love of my life done to my boyfriend? And why couldn’t I bring myself to care about anything but the fact that Sirius might be injured just as badly?

“How did they get like this though?” Mr. Lestrange hissed.

“Police car,” Rabastan sputtered, clutching my hand tighter as the incantation my mother was working over his leg hurt him. I hadn’t realized he was listening too.

“What?” Mr. Lestrange asked, at his son’s side in an instant. I didn’t like being so close to a man that, though he’d never been anything but nice to me, severely gave me the creeps. I’d heard too many stories of his ruthlessness to feel comfortable with him anywhere near me. Would his son end up being just as notorious? Would I one day feel uneasy being this close to Bas too? Would I be sticking around long enough to find out?

***

I avoided going to see Rabastan where he’d stayed in our guestroom the next morning. I’d tossed and turned all night, trying to decide what my next move would be. And I did have to make a move. It was time.

Sirius had chosen his side and was now battling those I was close to. He was putting himself in peril while I debated on which danger I could live with. The danger of associating closely with Death Eaters or the danger in rejecting them. I had to take action soon or I’d be forced in a direction I didn’t want to go.

The acute feeling of loneliness that I hadn’t been able to quite shake since Sirius had run away from home overwhelmed me now. I needed advice. I needed someone to assure me everything would work out, even if it was a lie. I needed to know if it was all worth the risk. But who could tell me that?

The light bulb turned on in my head.

Of course! Why hadn’t I thought about it before? Well, perhaps I had subconsciously. I just hadn’t had the motivation to act on it. But not I had plenty of motivation. My future was hurtling towards me faster than I would ever be ready for. There was only one person who would know the feeling. Only one person who could prepare me for what was coming next. I now knew what I had to do and I knew I had to do it soon.

***


It wasn't until the week before school began that I took the risk. The very considerable risk. One that, before I would've never dreamed of taking without the devious and clever Sirius leading the way. Assuring me we wouldn't get caught, holding my hand and distracting my thoughts entirely by the physical contact.

But I needed to talk to someone and there was only one person I could think of that could understand my suffering. Only one individual had been in such a similar situation. Only she could truly help me now.

Her decision had been slightly easier but it had still been love over the life she knew. She'd chosen to forsake it all for a boy and a life that her family would never approve of and I needed to know if it was worth it.

I tried to be as inconspicuous as possible, waiting for a rainy day and donning old Muggle clothes. A vintage T-shirt, faded jeans and a hooded sweatshirt. I threw the hood up- wishing I had an Invisibility Cloak instead (maybe I should've filched Potter's) - and tucked my ponytail back into it. I kept my head down but checked over my shoulder subtly- a ridiculous amount of times- as I treaded through the crowded streets of London.

When I got nearer, I took a detour. I shrewdly ducked into a dark back street to make sure I wasn't being followed, making my way through deserted allies with overflowing dumpsters and broken street lamps.

I wasn't scared of anything but being followed. I had my wand if anyone tried something- they wouldn't have a chance if I hexed them.

When I was almost certain no one had followed me, I slithered out of the alley way and back onto the main street. I kept my hood on as I walked slowly down the street. My pulse crashed in my ears, my stomach twisted sickeningly and my brain raced incoherently.

Why was I risking this? I was already in mortal danger, why did I feel the need to make it worse?

I stepped around a puddle on the sidewalk and clenched my hands into fists in my pockets- trying to concentrate on the light sound my footsteps made. I considered turning back but felt a twinge at the thought.

Not only was I in desperate need of guidance, but I really wanted to see her. Part of me was ridiculously excited to see the girl who'd been like my older sister for so long. I wanted it so bad I could taste it.

No, I wasn't going to turn back and pretend that my crazy impulse had never happened. I couldn't.

It began to drizzle again- a light breezy mist. The wind picked up and blew my hood off. But I didn't panic- I'd accepted that I was risking everything. If someone was following me, I would simply look at it as an intervention by fate. She'd be making the decision for me- what ever happened after that, happened. I would take it as it came and assume it would go the way it was supposed to. Even if that meant death.

I stopped in front of the unfamiliar flat apprehensively, would she be happy to see me? Or would she be angry at me for putting her and the love she’d left her family for in even more danger? Or would she be angry with me for not coming to her sooner?

I shook this futile worry away- I'd been in first year, for Merlin's sake! I couldn't have followed her if I'd wanted to. She'd understand that.

I forced my foot forward- one step at a time- until I finally reached the door. I took several deep breaths, trying to work up the nerve to knock on the door. Finally, I held my breath completely and risked a very tentative knock.

Seconds later the door opened and I came face to face with the ever handsome Ted Tonks.

For a moment, I felt like a drooling little first year again. He was still gorgeous as ever, with that strong jaw, prominent chin and those sandy curls. He looked slightly more mature and he seemed to have gotten slightly taller. But his eyes were exactly the same shade of earnest hazel that I remembered.

And then I was snapped out of my momentary daze by a wonderfully familiar voice.

"Teddy, love? Who is it? Is it the bo-?" Andromeda broke off abruptly when she poked her head into the hallway and saw me.

And then the rest of her body followed. I gasped in shock. Because on her hip, nestling her pretty face into Andromeda's neck as she slept, was a small baby girl with turquoise colored curls.

***

(Hey guys,
Sorry about that lack of
updates, writer's block hit me hard. And with all the craziness going on lately I just couldn't bring myself to work through it. But I think I've gotten through it. So I really hope you can lay your down pitchforks long enough to tell me what you think in a {hopefully good} review!
Love love love, RED)


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