"There is never a time or place for true love. It happens accidentally, in a heartbeat, in a single flashing, throbbing moment." ― Sarah Dessen
A suitcase lays open on my bed as I pace around my room, trying to think of anything I could have forgotten. In a few minutes, I'll be leaving my personal hell to go on a trip that manifested itself from James's latest letter.
It's okay mate, I understand. I can't wait to hear about your "epiphany."
Remus, calm down. Okay, maybe it could get us in trouble, but what do you think all this planning has been for? This is two years in the making here. Yeah, Peter is involved, but Tonks isn't. I hope you're happy, but as soon as she finds out, she's going to be pissed that she wasn't involved. But, rest assured, we're being careful. I can't explain in a letter, so would you like to come visit Sirius and I in a few days? I'll invite Peter, too. I hope you can come so we can explain ourselves. It's time.
We're all well. Yes, the Potter household is party central, as always. Sorry about that, mate, but the get-together is soon! And school is only a month away! You can bear it, I know you can!
See you soon,
Today is finally the day I've been waiting for: the 21st of July and time to go on this much anticipated vacation. A vacation from this place that's supposed to offer comfort and security, but gives anything but that. As I slam my beaten-up suitcase shut and venture from my room, I glance down the hallway at Elizabeth's small figure, dashing into her room at the sight of me; a perfect example of why this trip is so welcomed. I roll my eyes and continue my journey into the kitchen, where the whole family, except for Elizabeth, is spending their free time.
"Everything packed, Remus?" my mother questions as I enter, drying a dish from her position at the sink.
"I believe so," I say, smiling meekly, glancing at Kevin's malevolent stare from the table.
"Alright, well you better get going, you don't want to be late," she says, setting a dish down to give me a hug and a kiss goodbye.
"See you son," my father grunts from his post at the table, reading the Daily Prophet. Olivia squeals goodbye and hugs me tightly; Oliver gives me a loving slap on the back and a hug; Kevin does nothing but stare.
"Say goodbye, Kevin, he'll be gone for two weeks," my mother commands.
"Bye," Kevin says stiffly from his seat. I roll my eyes and sigh. I want to confront him violently with a burning passion, but now is not the time. One day, something is going to make me snap, and he's going to regret everything. For now, I just want to leave.
"I'll be seeing you soon," I say through clenched teeth as I grab a handful of floo powder. I throw it into the fire and shout: "James Potter's house!" as swirling green flames appear. I step in and give one last look at my family as the flames engulf my body. It's a warm tickly feeling that I've always quite enjoyed.
The spinning sensation hits me as I fume about Kevin's behavior. If I really hated one person in this world, it would be Kevin. There's a lot of people I don't particularly like, but a hatred that deep is something I feel only for Kevin. I don't think anyone could ever be more hated in my eyes, except maybe Fenrir Greyback. But he's a whole other story. As I slow down, James's extravagant living room swims before my eyes. I have to make an effort to push these negative thoughts from my consciousness as I come to a complete stop.
"Hey!" James exclaims as I step out of the fire. "How are you?" He walks over and slaps a hand on my sooty back, causing a cloud of dust to surround us. He chuckles as I start to clean myself off.
"Fine," I answer as I brush soot off my shoulder. "Just dumb Kevin drama, but that's not anything new. How about you two?"
"Great," Sirius answers. I peek behind James to see him lounging on the very couch Tonks I had shared a kiss a few months ago at Christmas. My insides squirm, then calm. I can't do this to myself now. "We're just waiting for Peter now."
"Great," I say, taking a seat in a very expensive-looking recliner.
"Got any biscuits?" Sirius questions.
"Well, you know it's not a very good idea to eat before… yanno," James says, giving him a very knowing look.
"Oh yeah… you're right. The first time I did it, we got to see my burrito again. And, it got all over your couch imported from China."
"What in Merlin's name are you talking about?" I ask, confused as hell.
"You'll see," James says, smirking. All of a sudden, green flames appear in James's fireplace and Peter, a little wobbly, steps out.
"Hey guys," he says, smiling.
"Hey Pete," James greets.
"Alright," I say. "Now that everyone is here, it's time to show Remus this project."
"Alright, Miss Impatient-Pants," Sirius says, smirking.
"Hey I just got here!" Peter exclaims, exasperated. "Now 'how've you been?' or 'I've missed you' or anything like that?"
"Nope," Sirius says, getting off the couch and standing next to James. "Remus needs to see this."
"Fine," Peter shrugs, shoulders sinking. "But we're not doing this by a creek again. You guys almost lost me last time!"
My head is swimming as I try to process this all at once. My usually brilliant mind is coming up short; I don't have a single clue as to what they're up to. As James leads the way to the front door, he grabs a bag from a hook on the wall and gives Sirius a look.
"Is that….?" Sirius questions, eyeing the bag.
"Yeah," James says, shrugging. "We don't need a repeat of last time."
"From all this talk, 'last time' must've been a complete disaster," I say sarcastically.
"Actually it was," James explains, shouldering the bag. "You'll understand everything soon."
"If you say so," I say, sighing. We then follow James out the front door and into his driveway, where we meet Lowen cleaning Mrs. Potter's Muggle car.
"Lowen!" I exclaim without thought. She straightens up and searches for the person who has called her name for a moment. She then spots me.
"Is that Remus?" she asks, walking over, still holding a soapy sponge. "Why it is Remus!" she says as she gets closer.
"You…. had your baby!" I say, noticing her flat stomach. "Boy or girl?"
"Girl," she says, smiling sweetly. "Her name is Annabelle."
"What a lovely name," I say.
"Thank you," she says, never once letting her smile disappear. "Where are you off to, Master James?"
"Lowen, you don't have to call me that," he says, blushing.
"Your mother wants me-" she starts.
"I know, I know," he says, waving a hand in her direction. "She wants you to be formal."
"That was her instruction, yes," Lowen confirms.
"It's okay around me," he says. She nods and then regains her friendly aura.
"So where are you four off to?" she asks again.
"Just a walk in the woods," James says. "Tell my mother we'll be back by dinner."
"Alright," she says, nodding. "Fair enough."
"Thank you, Lowen," James says as we continue our walk.
"You're welcome, James," she says. "Nice to see you again."
"Nice to see you again, too," I say as we pass her and continue down a small slope.
"She's such a dear," Sirius says as we come across a dirt path leading into the woods that James takes us down.
"She favors you, Sirius," James says, pushing back a branch blocking the path. "She only makes those biscuits you love when you're here."
"Well, who doesn't love Sirius?" he questions, a bit cocky. I snigger. "Think I'm funny, Lupin?"
"No, not at all actually," I say, chuckling.
"Well, I'll have you know-" and Sirius goes on and on and on for the remainder of our trek through the forest.
"What are we looking for?" I question as I realize we've been walking for an hour.
"A good place to show you our project," James says from the front of our group.
"What kind of place?" I ask, glancing around.
"Big, secluded, open" he describes. "I'll know when I see it."
So we continue walking until we round a bend and see a small clearing up ahead.
"That's it," James says, his pace quickening with each step. When we reach it, he stops and evaluates for a moment. "Yeah this is it."
"Okay," I say, facing the three of them. "Time to spill the beans."
"Yeah he's right," James says, twiddling his thumbs. "Okay, so when we found out you were, yanno, a werewolf, we, being your best friends, did some research on lycanthropy. We found that, no matter how hungry a werewolf is, he will not attack an animal. Werewolves only hunt humans, so in conclusion, a werewolf is harmless to animals."
"Okay…" I say, confused as to why this is relevant to them.
"We also talked a lot about trying to make your full moons easier on you," Peter picks up. "We wanted you to be able to, for lack of a better word, enjoy it, although that might never be fully possible. We want to be able to be with you during full moons."
"That's so dangerous though!" I protest, starting to pace back and forth, my mind spinning with all the possible things they could have done.
"Not if you're an animal," Sirius says, smirking.
"Well, you're obviously animals!" I say, looking away from them as run my fingers through my hair as I do when I'm stressed.. "Come on guys, tell me up front-" But I'm cut off by what I see.
I turn back around to face them, but they are no where to be seen. In their places stand a huge, magnificent, white stag; a large, black, shaggy dog; and a small brown rat. I look around in a frenzy to find my friends. Then it hits me. They are the… animals. They became animagi. I cross to the stag and stare into its bright green eyes. I feel as if those eyes are familiar, and can pierce my very soul.
"James?" I question, feeling faint. All of a sudden, James is standing where the stag stood seconds before, smiling meekly.
"Yeah, it's me," he says. I blink my eyes very fast as my brain starts working a million miles an hour. I cross to the back dog with astonishingly bright gray eyes.
"Sirius?" I ask. Then, he too transforms back into himself.
"How did you know?" he asks, chuckling.
"Your eyes," I admit, short of breath. "That's Peter." I say, indicating the rat.
"Yeah it's me," Peter says, transforming back to a human. "What do you think?"
"I think…" I say, not able to finish my sentence as I stumble backwards onto a boulder. I sit and fume for a second.
"We're not done by any means," James says. "We just started transforming a few weeks ago. Before that, it was just wandwork. We need loads more practice, and even this isn't completely right. Peter doesn't have a tail and Sirius can't bark. We need more time."
"You guys…" I start, looking for the right words. "You guys are crazy geniuses. I can't believe you… wow."
"Pretty amazing, I know," Sirius says, smiling.
"You guys are the best," I say, getting up and pulling them into a group hug. This one moment makes up for any shit I had to deal with earlier this morning. I couldn't be happier or more proud.
Ugh, this one was so delayed! I'm so sorry! I had an acting camp last week so things were crazy and I'm just getting around to writing now… SOOO sorry!
Hopefully I'll have another chapter up in a few days! Well, crossing my fingers!
How about this one? Pretty good? Pretty bad? I think I like it! Marauders stuff, woo!
Thanks so much to all of you who have kept faith in me! I love you all! Please take time to leave a review! (: