I Love You More than Myself Part One

Chapter 44

If kisses were water I would give you the sea, if hugs were the leaves I would give you a tree, but if love was time, I would give you eternity. ~ Unknown

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*Tonks's POV*

I don't remember falling asleep, but when I regain consciousness, I have to peel a few dead leaves from my cheek as I sit up. I yawn and stretch, suddenly noticing how pink the sky is; I should be home now. My mother is going to kill me. This sudden thought is enough to make me panic so that my heart starts pumping a million miles an hour. I scramble up and start running back down the dirt path, leaving behind my intricately drawn mud designs. They all have one thing in common: a boy and girl in love. I guess you could say I have Remus on the brain.

My converse-clad feet strike the dirt at an alarming rate and soon, I'm breathless. When I reach the gate of my house, just past the border of the forest, I stop dead and fall over. My mother is standing in the threshold of our front door with her wand tapping viciously on her thigh.

"Nymphadora…" she says coldly as I pick myself up.

"Mother…" I say, wiping some dirt off my butt.

"Where were you, Nymphadora?" she asks, still tapping her wand.

"I fell asleep on the riverbank, Mum. I'm okay," I say, rolling my eyes.

"Get inside, now," she says, stepping back to make room for me. I hang my head and obey, passing her and into the kitchen. There I find sixteen year-old Aaron pouring over a Muggle comic book. I stalk over and look at the cover.

'"'Iron Man?'" I read, furrowing my brow. "What in the world is that, Aaron?"

"A comic book!" he explains, setting it down to look at me. "Surely this isn't something new to you."

"Well…" I say, looking at some of the pictures inside. "It doesn't even move!"

"It's for Muggles, dumbass!" he says, chuckling.

"I know that!" I say, exasperated, looking down into the book once more. "What's it about?"

"Well, this guy Tony Stark-" Aaron starts, but is cut off by my mother clearing her throat. "What, Mum?"

"Would you mind leaving the kitchen for a little while?" she asks. "I would like to speak to Nymphadora alone."

I roll my eyes but Aaron says, "Sure" and retreats from the room, bringing his odd comic with him.

"What is it, Mum?" I ask, grabbing a glass from a cabinet.

"I don't like you staying out late," my mother says.

"Mum, I fell asleep on the riverbank!" I explain. "It's not like I was having sex or anything!"

"Well Nymphadora, you're growing up," she says. "You're a teenager now, and I know you like that boy at school, Remus." I almost spill my glass of water.

"Mum!" I say, rolling my eyes. "Do you not trust me?"

"No, Nymphadora, it's just that I want you to know what is acceptable and what is not," she says. "Sasha and Aaron got this talk, too."

"Well, it must've worked on perfect Sasha," I say sarcastically.

"Don't you dare say things like that about Sasha!" my mother basically screams. This sudden outburst startles me so that I whip around to face her strained expression. "It's hard times, Nymphadora, and if you don't appreciate your brother… He's got a job at the Ministry now and it's a very dangerous place to work at the time being."

"Mum, Sasha can handle himself," I say, softening my voice a little now that I realize she is upset. I cross to where she is sitting at the kitchen table.

"I didn't know where you were," she said, mopping up tears, finally admitting why she was so upset with me for being late. "You could've been killed, or captured, or-"

"Mum, I'm okay," I say, laying a hand on her knee. "I'm right here."

"I know, dear, I know," she says, pulling me into her arms. "I just can't stand the thought of losing any of you. Sasha lives away, and Aaron is getting older. You're maturing. And knowing you feel that way about Sasha is hard. He could be gone any day now, Nymphadora, any of us could."

"Don't say that, Mum," I say, hugging her back. "We'll be okay."

"I hope so, dear," she says. We stay silent for a moment, taking in each other's presence. "And Nymphadora, I also wanted to talk to you about your abilities."

"What about them?" I ask, pulling away from her loving grip.

"I want you to stay true to yourself, Nymphadora. You're old enough now to want to change yourself into something you aren't. You'll be pressured by boys and classmates to become the perfect girl. Don't do it, Nymphadora. Stay true to yourself. Remember what your mum told you."

"I will, Mum, I promise," I say, smiling. "I didn't plan on doing that anyways; it wouldn't be any fun."

"Good, you're ahead of the game," she says, finally releasing me and walking over to grab a tissue; she lets out a breath. "What would you like for dinner?"

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*Remus's POV*

The angst of the past few weeks has worn off by now. I've finished some of my homework, cleaned my room, and am now starting to answer my mail.

Dear James,

I'm so incredibly sorry I haven't replied sooner. That whole fiasco with the ball really threw me off, and I'm just now getting back to normal Remus. My brother helped me understand something I thought I'd known all along, but really didn't. It was kind of amazing. I'll explain more when we get back to school.

So, about this "project." You and Sirius really need to tell me what's going on, because I didn't get to hear the full story before we left school. I know you guys have been working on this for a long time now, but if it will get you in trouble, I urge you to stop. What does it involve? I know it has something to do with my "furry little problem," but what? You need to explain. And, if I remember right, Peter is involved too? Please tell me Tonks isn't. If you guys pull her into something that could get her in trouble, I'll… I don't know what I'll do. Just please be careful.

So, how are you guys doing? Having fun at the Potter household? Probably a hell of a lot better than my living hell, I can give you that. Maybe we can arrange a get-together sometime soon? You know, just the guys? I need something like that.

Well, I hope you're enjoying your summer!

Remus

I fold up the letter and place it in an envelope. It then finds its way to the pile of letters I need to send out. Kevin, being the asshole he is, took the family owl and won't let me use it until he's all done with her. In reality, he doesn't have anything to send, he just wants to be a prat to me. I grab a new sheet of paper and the single letter I have from Tonks. It reads:

Remus,

I'm going to be the first one to admit this is hard for me to write this. I'm not sure why you haven't written yet (I would have expected you to) so I'll write first this summer.

How are you? Are your wounds all healed up? I hope so. I'm good, doing nothing in particular. I'm kind of bored to be honest.

Well, I hope you can answer me soon, and if you feel as if this was an awkward letter, then you were right. I'm just… sorry Remus. About everything. Just… please answer.

Tonks

I smile at how awkward she is about the whole situation. She has no idea that I've forgiven her, and that I love her. I run my thumb over her name at the bottom, thinking about how I can imagine her writing this: crouched over, not caring about her messy handwriting. I look back down at my blank sheet and start my letter back.

Tonks,

First off, I don't want this to be hard for you. Tonks, I took a good hard look at this whole situation, and I've come to realize, it was all a learning experience. It happened. We've got to move on to something bigger and better than this, because I know we can do that. It'll be better for both of us if we stop focusing on the negatives and try to turn to the positives. We can do this, you said it yourself.

The reason I didn't answer earlier was because I guess you could I say I wasn't feeling like myself. The aftermath of the whole thing really shook me up and now I'm starting to feel loads better. I actually finished my Transfiguration and my Potions summer work, which is back on schedule for me. How are you? I hope you're not too rattled, and it will make me feel much better if you answer this.

Enjoy the rest of your summer, Tonks, that's all I ask. Live life and forget. It's a new chapter in my life, and should be in yours too. You're one of the best things that's ever happened to me. I love you.

Remus

Writing that last sentence was risky, but I had to do it. I seal it and place it on top of James's letter. As if on cue, someone knocks on the door.

"Come in," I say, grabbing a sheet of paper to answer Lily's letter.

"Kevin wanted me to bring you the owl," I hear Oliver say as he enters my room. I turn around and see him carrying our family owl on his forearm.

"Oh thanks," I say, standing up with my pile of finished letters in hand. "I actually have quite a few letters ready to be sent. Would you be a dear and send them for me?"

"Sure, little brother," Oliver says, taking the pile. He turns right back around and out my bedroom door. I hear him yell something at Kevin, but can't make out what it is.

As soon as he's gone, I sit down and turn back to my letters. I write Lily's name elegantly at the top of the blank sheet of parchment and sigh. I want Tonks's response now.

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*Tonks's POV*

Laying in my warm bed on a sunny summer morning is as close to my idea of paradise as you can imagine. My big fluffy comforter wraps around my torso and my feet poke out the bottom; warm morning sunlight streams through my window and across my bed. The room is silent, and the world is at peace for this short period in time, as if all is right. Unfortunately, the peace is about to be disturbed.

"TONKS! " I hear Aaron yell up the stairs. "MAIL FOR YOU!"

My eyes flash open and I sit up, hair frumpled and already in a bad mood. I was in my happy place, how dare he disturb that? I swing my legs off the bed and stalk across my room to the door which I swing open and shout: "You couldn't have waited until I was awake?"

"No!" he responds from the floor below. "It's from Remus!"

My heart stops. Suddenly, I don't care that I've been woken up way too early. I thunder down the stairs and into the kitchen where Aaron is holding the mail. I grab the letter from his hands and believe it or not, it's actually from Remus.

"Thanks Aaron, but if you ever wake me like that again, I will personally burn your entire collection of Muggle comics," I threaten, tearing open the letter. He chuckles.

"What does it say?" my mother asks, who is sitting next to Aaron, cutting up some sausage. I sink slowly into the seat across from Aaron, scanning the page.

"Nothing much," I lie, holding back tears. "Just about his summer-will you excuse me a moment?"

I scramble up and retreat back my room as fast as I can, flinging myself on my bed, bawling tears of joy, relief, shock. This one letter has brought me so much hope, I can't help but cry.

He loves me.

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Hey guys! So, I'll admit this was hard for me to write (and I don't know why), as you can tell by how long it took for me to post this! Don't give up on me yet, I promise I'll finish this! Promise promise promise promise. (:

So how are you guys? Good I hope! Enjoying summer? Thanks so much to all of you!

Pleaseeeeeeeee review! :D

xoxo

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