Choose to be Free
Disclaimer: Nothing is mine. Harry Potter belongs to J.K. Rowlings and hers, Buffy the Vampire Slayer belongs Joss Weadon and his.
Note: This will be a series of shorts as Faith talks to various characters in the Harry Potter universe. I'm not even really sure if this will end up with a plot, but I loved the poem and couldn't resist.
Poetry Challenge #16
'Beyond this place of wrath and tears
Looms but the Horror of the shade,
And yet the menace of the years
Finds, and shall find, me unafraid.
It matters not how strait the gate,
How charged with punishments the scroll,
I am the master of my fate:
I am the captain of my soul.'
- Invictus by William Ernest Henley
“I don’t know why I came here. I guess after all that happened, I didn’t know what to do, where to go,” Faith was silent for a long moment. He, too, was silent and lay unmoving. The only sound in the room was the two of them breathing. The candles had burned down low and although he could have extinguished them with a word, he did not. Strangely enough, this was their time. After the overwhelming emotion, the passion, the need that clawed at both of them, was this time of sharing. Although they were both tired, neither would fall asleep until the other was through talking about whatever they needed to speak of that night.
They lay on a four poster bed in his chambers draped with green and silver brocade, lazily sprawled on opposite sides of the bed, not touching. There was never much touching, except in the passion of the act of sex. For both of them thought that was all it was. The passion that flared between them was just an itch to be scratched, a need to be satisfied, or that was how it had started. They both tried to ignore the fact that it had developed into more. Yet although they shared a bed, and painful memories of the past, they never reached out to comfort, or hold, or gently stroke flesh pliant from lovemaking.
“What is freedom, after all?” she asked, “I don’t think at any time in our lives we are ever truly free. When you are a kid your parents rule you, an adult society rules you. Being chosen just gave the Council rights to send me to my death. Buff said that she was grateful that I chose to fight with them. It wasn’t a choice. I don’t know what it was. I didn’t have a reason. For me there was no cause. I don’t think I’m suicidal, but going to almost certain death because I had nothing else to do on a Tuesday night?” she snorted.
He listened. He had shared his story another night, a story about love, betrayal, pain, suffering and striving towards some sort of forgiveness, redemption. Not so different from hers, he thought idly. He, too, had thoughts like hers, occasionally still did. Fighting for the side of light, what would it get him? Not love, his love had left him years before, not forgiveness or redemption. He would never forgive himself and who would absolve him? Did he really think the Light would win and thus be on the winning team or would the Dark win and he would regret his choice for the balance of his short life.
“I remember standing at the edge of the Hellmouth, the blood of my lover on my hands and the wind blowing dust over the desert,” she spoke in her harsh American accent. He usually was able to ignore the appalling way she pronounced English words, like he ignored the flash of jealousy at her words, he was her lover. When she was moaning beneath him, or above him, or whispered commands in his ear, her accent sounded like music, a flaw that made her real and reminded him that those moments in his bed actually happened.
“I thought life would go on, my choice, I wasn’t going back to prison, I had fought with the good guys, and I could have a new life. Everyone made their choices, to continue fighting the good fight, to go back to their families and forget what happened. What choice did I have that I could make? It was like my life was over again. Good or bad, the world fell apart, and someone had to put it together again.” Faith was quiet for a long time.
Severus could feel the heaviness of his eyelids and lazily reached over to his wand. With a wave and a whispered, “Nox,” the candles went out. The only light was from the low embers of the nearly extinguished fire in the hearth across the room. “Go to sleep, Faith.”
Without a word, Faith reached over and drank down the dreamless sleep potion that he placed on the night stand every evening. She rolled to her side, curling up into a ball. She closed her eyes and whispered a prayer, as she did every night, “I am the master of my fate: I am the captain of my soul.”