part one: still
Disclaimer: I own nothing. Buffy the Vampire Slayer belongs to Joss Whedon and David Greenwalt. Harry Potter belongs to J.K Rowling.
Warnings/Spoilers: Post-War AU Harry Potter (so some character death different than the books obviously). Season 6 & Slightly changed (no Kennedy) Season 7 BTVS.
A/N: This is a Wishlist fic as well, it came from a prompt provided by luna_del_cielo or just Luna over her on TTH. But, since it ran rather long I figured it was better suited to being posted separate from the general collection (Multitude) I had.
A/N 2: Reviews are Good. This has been a subtle hint from the author - Please return to your regularly scheduled reading.Part 1: still
Life continued on for him after the War because it had to.
It seemed that, just like last time, he was the one left behind. The person all alone and simply surviving at the end of the day.
It took him a while to remember that this time that wasn’t
the case. There had been that long moment of simply staring at her form laid out and so still – so very still. His Dora had never been so still.
She was bright, clumsy, playful, fierce, brave, quirky and wonderful. Not….peaceful. Even in sleep she would move around a lot and bits of her hair would change color abruptly.
He just kept staring – just waiting for her to move.
His eyes slid over her body slowly and settled on her stomach and something niggled on his thoroughly numbed brain. Something important. Something theirs
When it hit him, he breathed in sharply and turned on his heel. No one noticed his exit – all too busy celebrating Voldemort’s defeat, tending wounded, or mourning their own dead.
And it wasn’t difficult to leave behind her body there. That thing….her-her corpse no longer felt like Tonks to him. And he had something he had to do. Responsibilities he could no longer ever ever shy away from.
He gave a slight involuntary start when he first entered the house. It was in no way shape or form his mother-in-law’s fault that she bore such a striking resemblance to the woman who had just killed his wife.
It made sense, after all, since Bellatrix had been Andromeda’s sister.
Any similarity to the crazy Death Eater vanished when he saw the tears on her face, the utter anguish in her countenance.
“Remus,” she whispered, choking on even the name. She stood up from the couch she had been sitting on with Narcissa Malfoy and took a step towards him – reaching her hand out before letting it drop. They had never been extremely close, never had the time for that sort of relationship to even form really. But this changed everything and neither knew quite what to say. What to do or how to act.
“I want to,” he stumbled over his own words and had to clench his jaw tight again just to get through this moment. Was this what his life was going to be from now on? (Again.) Moment to moment? “I know he’s asleep,” Remus continued, “but I need to go look at Teddy right now
. I need to just go look at our-,” Merlin he wouldn’t
break right now, he wouldn’t, “-my
“Of-of course,” Andromeda said, stuttering uncharacteristically. “Can I,” she swallowed and averted her eyes as if asking pulled at her, “can I come with you? I don’t want to be alone right now,” her voice ended near a whisper.
As if her statement made her remember the other person in the room Andromeda turned around to her sister again. “Oh, Cissa -,”
“No, Andromeda,” Narcissa said getting up off the couch gracefully. “I do not want to impose on you – especially not at a time like this,” her eyes darted to him awkwardly. “I will simply see myself out.”
“You can come too,” he invited.
The whole room sort of froze for a second. There were looks going on around him and family politics that he only just began to understand when his mind wasn’t clouded by such recent grief. At right now, he frankly didn’t care.
“If you’re sure you don’t mind,” Narcissa said pulling her perfect robes even straighter.
“No, Cissa. I want you to stay,” Andromeda responded grabbing her hand. And something about the stiffness the Malfoy woman always handled herself with seemed to loosen.
“Alright,” she smiled and it was probably the first genuine smile Remus had ever seen from her. “I’ve never actually seen Teddy,” she commented as she allowed her sister to lead her to the bedroom.
Remus followed behind the two women and a hush fell over all of them when they opened the door to the room.
A room that had very obviously been Tonks’ as a child (band posters on the walls, clashing bright colors everywhere, moving pictures chronicling different points in her life stuck into the edges of the mirror, both wizarding and muggle stuffed toys on the window seat) and just been slightly converted for her own
child’s use while he was here. That would probably hurt – should probably cut at him inside – but it barely registered.
Instead he continued, as if in a daze, to his little boy’s bedside while the others waited at the door as if giving him space. And suddenly, there he was.
But now what.
Since…..it….had happened. Getting to his son had been all that had propelled him forward. Remus’ swallowed hard and his hands wrapped around the safety rails that had been put up on the edge of the bed. Now
everything was sharp. Now
everything felt too real. Too cutting. Too much.
Too much. Just too much.
But…but this was still the only place he knew to be.
With a shaking hand he gently ran a finger across Teddy’s hair. As if somehow sensing him in his sleep, the hair turned pink. Bright joyful pink.
Just like his mother.
He pulled his right hand quickly away, balled into a fist against his mouth to try and muffle the noise of his sudden sobbing. He clutched the wooden rail in his other hand – welcoming the bite of the sharp edges into his palm. Slowly Remus sunk to his knees next to the bed and let his head fall forward against the mattress.
He woke the next morning feeling incredibly stiff – his face, body, and his head. And it took a while to register the feel of two bodies leaning against him. Two distinguished women (one blonde and the other brunet), tear-streaked faces now slack in sleep with their heads on his shoulders. They must of rearranged him sometime last night so that he was leaning back against the bed.
Sunlight filtered lazily through the blinds and he allowed knowledge to come slowly into his brain as well.
Tonks was dead.
Voldemort was dead. Again. The War was over. But that hardly seemed to matter to him because Tonks – Tonks was dead.
He bit his lip hard and breathed through his nose. Remus really didn’t want to cry again right now. Moments. Just moment.
He only had to get through moments at a time.
He remembered that from last time.
On his left Narcissa murmured and shifted slightly but kept sleeping and something stuttered inside him, stopping his train of thought.
This wasn’t like last time. He actually had some people left this time. Family.
Teddy, Andromeda, Harry, and …..Narcissa.Ah, the Black family
, he smiled despite himself. Sirius would probably approve.Dora
, he closed his eyes pained, the smile slipping from his face and settling into a grim line. Yeah, Tonks would have approved, too.