The steps that took me away, left behind my soul to stay...
"This is all we have. I do not know how we are going to get through the next time if you take all of this now." Aali is sulking again. I know he does not like it when I travel alone.
"We'll make do, I will prepare some more when I get back." I answer to placate him, I am almost sure that I will not need it by the next time. Fourteen vials for fourteen days. I will have to return within two weeks. Then I will have roughly month and a half to prepare a batch which will be cutting it really close, though I doubt it would be necessary.
"I have never seen you use it ever during regular days, despite the fact that it would make things so much easier for you. So you are definitely lying about something. Either you are lying about how many days treating this child is going to require, just to leave me behind or this is something really dangerous and you don't want me involved." He is trying to corner me into taking him with me. But I can't. I wish he would stop nagging me, there is only so much I can endure. The freedom is calling to me. Even if I know it is a flame to my soul which is a moth and that it will kill me surely. I need to go. And Aali is not going to stop me.
He is right that I never take it on regular days. The Veela-repressent potion. For past twenty years I have only taken it during my yearly heat which comes every spring without fail. But where I am going and who I will probably be seeing each and every day I will need it.
It is true that I have lived half potential. A life of weakness and constant pain and longing. Not to downplay the impossible to ignore, painful like a deep bleeding and festering gash across your chest, longing. Longing that is the deepest part of my instinct. Longing that has been burning my insides like cinder for two long decades. Rejection that burns with every breath, bleeding seething rejection that haunts every crevice of my psyche and wounds my soul some more every single day. Rejection which is like being bound above a spitfire on a constant turn. The human me can rationalize it, does rationalize it, but the Veela does not, it calls and longs and desires for what it does and there is only so much you can fight only so much you can endure, this bone deep and constantly aching. Like a cancer spreading slowly through one's veins.
I have lasted this long incredibly because of the potion, but even that has it's expiry date, but more than the potion my endurance's expiry date is coming closer. I don't think I have it in me to trudge along five more years or so. This trip will help me burn out faster. Being close and then pulling far will surely do it. Withdrawal will be the last nail and I will be free.
Aali will not understand it, because he can never feel it or be it. He thinks I am a masochist to not demand a blood duel for claiming my mate. How can I make him understand? That even if I can win my mate through a blood duel faster than a blink, I won't be winning his heart. That was always the impossible part.
I have endured it all without fail and now is not the time to give in to temptation. I would not ruin this chance, just to face irrevocable rejection again. I have lived all my life in rejection and agony, I will not die in rejection even if agony will still be there and grow exponentially until the end. I have lived a life of banishment due to someone else's ignorance and moment of anger. But I will die on my own terms, even if it is the last thing I do. I have paid for my sins in the harshest possible way. I have more than done my due. I have made this world a better place by sheer force of will and dedication.
So I will take this potion because I will need it when I will be in such close proximity of the one who is the reason for it all, while I cure his child. I will need it like I needed it in my last year at Hogwarts and the two years after when I was on house arrest during which the only thing I did was brew the potion and perfect it for daily consumption. The widely known and used Veela-repressent potion takes more than three months to brew and is easily detectable. The Veela-repressent that Severus devised is virtually undetectable and takes Forty-two days in brewing. It is a difficult potion to brew, but incredibly uses all easily available and ordinary ingredients with the exception of Bluebell sickle-berries which are rare. But Severus had left me seeds and instruction to planting it and I now have an impressive bush of it growing in my garden. Of course the plant is so ordinary looking and so rare that most people do not know what it is.
"Think what you may. I will not change my mind. I need you to stay behind for Sarah, who if you remember is your wife and six months pregnant with your child and for the Twirlezil bush which only you can take care of in my absence. Not to mention the hours at the monastery. Only you can be my replacement and you know it. So I will not hear another word on this subject. You will stay and I will return within two weeks." I finally zip up the potion and ingredients case which I need to take with me.
The sulk continues the rest of the day while I make necessary arrangements for travel. I will be port-keying to Istanbul in the morning from Nicosia and then to Paris just to lay a nice trail in case it is looked into before finally port-keying to St. Mungo's.
The night when it comes, brings with it the time to recall the inevitable. The voice. Still familiar like it never stopped speaking to me. Familiar because never a day has gone by when I have not heard it in my broken dreams. It is still the same but also so different.
He gets angry with me even when he does not have the slightest idea who I actually am and only that I might hold the key and skills to save his ailing child. I could not help it. The last we were in presence of each other I had not gotten a chance to say more than a few words to him. No the few words I had not spoken to him but in his presence had doomed me to this fate. To him I had only said two words. His name, and plea to listen to my case.
But he hadn't. he had not given me chance.
I don't blame him really. I am incapable of it.
I only blame my fate. That had made me a freak amongst freaks.
And had chosen Harry Potter the mate of the veela that had manifested inside me for unknown reasons at the age of seventeen.
I do have several theories regarding it.
Malfoys and Blacks both had Veela blood along the lines. It was a regular practice between pure-blood families because Veela magic was so much superior to normal wizards. And once a veela had chosen a mate, the bond was encouraged.
In the past few generations none of the off-spring had dominant Veela genes.
Freak of fate as I was, it decided to manifest itself inside me. I was the first wizard born in 7 generations with dominant Veela genes. Though it would not be known until I turned sixteen and the first symptoms started to show up.
The trigger was of course, torture.
My failure to kill Dumbledore had put me in the line of fire.
And refusing to recognize and give away Harry Potter who had somehow got caught by snatchers had brought me into the embrace of fire.
Not only was I a constant target after that.
His taking and then using of my wand had bound me to him. Forced me into maturity in the aftermath. As with a wizard Veela, the presenting of his wand to its potential mate is a binding, in exchange of which the mate gives them their blood completing the binding ritual.
Courtesy suggests that if a Veela makes the proposition and presents a wand to his desired mate, the mate should never take it and refuse the binding, which will keep Veela free of any magical attachments and they can easily move on and find another suitable mate.
Taking of the wand and using it to caste magic binds the veela. As a wizard veela's wand is much more important to the veela than a normal wizard's wand is to that wizard. A veela inlays a part of his primal core magic when he uses it after hitting puberty. Hence the veela and wand become one.
When the mate takes the wand and castes magic from it, they are accepting the part of Veela's core magic and laying a claim to it. It is an acceptance to a partnership. If the potential mate takes the wand, uses it and returns it before presenting the blood in exchange, it is a rejection. Which essentially destroys the veela.
This catch is present in the binding magic for clear reasons. A male veela, unlike the female veela is always dominant. Powerful and protective, this rule keeps him in constant check that the veela does not ever abuse his hold on his mate. The heats in male veela are not always for the reasons of reproduction but for re-enforcing their bond with their mate.
Guess who got the short-end of that deal.
Harry Potter was the only potential mate I ever came across. If my incapability of casting really harmful magic against him was not an indication, then finding me in his bed in the Gryffindor dormitory without knowing how I got there in that dreaded seventh year was a sign enough. I was lucky that by that time most of the Gryffindors had been hiding in the Room of requirement.
Severus had seen the signs too. And worked day and night alongside the other million impossible things he was doing to prepare an undetectable Veela-repressent potion.
And then Harry Potter had to show up at the Malfoy manor alongside Hermione Granger.
I would have known him in the crowd of a million Harry Potter impostors.
His scent was over-whelming. His presence a balm against my frayed nerves and his situation a solid threat against my instinct.
I had almost lost control.
And then he had taken my wand, when I was about to try a rescue.
I had not known the consequences of that little action then.
But I had known the consequences full well when he had returned it. Throwing it in my face after using it for three longs years.
He had not known that he had bonded me to him.
He had not known that he had the power to make me obey him.
He could not have done me more damage and more severely had he genuinely intended to as much he did without even knowing it.
It is ironic really.
As if rejection was not enough. I had to be banished as well.
It was necessary that he himself ended the banishment. Will me to be there.
I have tricked him into it. I am a Slytherin after all.
But it is a necessity.
And now this tale of pain and agony is finally going to come to an end.
Though, there is the chance that he will banish me again straight away as soon as he realizes who Ustad Beyazlamak is. This time I will be ready for him though. This time I will make sure he hears me first.
I plan to offer him an unbreakable vow against his insecurities and mistrust. It will be pretty safe as I wish nothing more than to cure his daughter. Genuinely.
Whatever I get in return is not something that will affect him or his family.
It will just have to be clean. I need to be focused on the task. I have poured more than enough over the child's report that came with the letter. I see some discrepancies which only my healer instinct picked up and I won't be able to solidly hypothesize until I see the girl myself.
By the time the sun is peeking through the horizon. I am absolutely ready to go. But I wait. Something is clinging inside me to this life, which will never be the same again by the time I will be back. If I will be back.
I sit down for my usual breakfast. Jam with a slice of sugar cake Sarah Bakes for me every now and then, and a cup of sweetened tea.
"You have to take great care of him Sarah. You are good for him." I say to her as she arranges the cabinets unnecessarily. She stops for a moment with defeated sigh she closes the tea-service cabinet, her small petite frame impossible rigid. It can't be good for her.
Her bright brown eyes when they settle on to me are sad. Sadder than I have ever seen them. She carelessly shoves her loosened black as coal ponytail behind her shoulder.
She is pretty in her special way. Petite, delicate looking but tough and nails. The amalgamation of Caucasian and Asian has unraveled beautifully in her and if she was a little conscious of herself she could have been a sight to behold.
I cured Sarah of a nightshade poisoning when she was a little girl of twelve and lived in a small settlement just at the base of the hill on which the monastery was situated. She had never stopped dogging me after that. At first Aali used to be irritated by her constant presence after school but then slowly they developed a friendship and I had always known that it would eventually turn into love. They were just so opposite and alike at the same time. She was a Muggle-born witch and at times reminded me very strongly of Granger.
Aali came from a long line of feuding Greek-Cypriot pure-blood wizarding family and his own uncle had murdered his parents. Aali had somehow escaped and after wandering around for more than two months had found his way into my backyard. On the brink of collapse.
This is my legacy I realize. Aali and Sarah. I have raised Aali and mentored Sarah. And now they are their own people. Amazing healers, independent, have found true love in life and are bringing together another human into this world.
I have done my due.
At age of Forty-one, Draco Malfoy Aka Ustad Beyazlamak will become a grandparent.
Given that he lives to see it. Which is unlikely and unfortunate.
But let this be a lesson to all, to choose your own time and take that chance.
She just nods her head at me and quietly makes her way to the garden.
I stare at myself in the mirror.
I don't look like someone who could be a grandfather.
An Uncle yes. Perhaps.
I know I have an impact on people when they meet me.
Dominant Male Veelas are rare and getting even rarer as time passes.
Most people don't even recognize us anymore.
True that because of the rejection, the allure is tamped down.
But even without it, I know I am a sight to behold.
Long silver hair which, having lost the gold in them as I have lost most of the color over the years.
Narrow line of my body is not because of the bone structure but the… circumstances.
I have never gotten to my full-potential because I have never had a day with none of my Veela repressed and after that rejected.
So I remain lithe. Slender. Face still narrow and features still more like my mother's than my father's.
Paleness of my skin remains despite living in the Mediterranean, which is actually why I was given the title. It is more descriptive and Ironic at the same time. Beyazlamak means 'to whiten' which is exactly how anyone would describe me. I am white and pale and silver and get whiter, paler and silverer every day.
And they haven't seen my wings yet or that name and title would be re-enforced twice more. I am thankful that they only sprout during the heats and I am usually indoors and isolated at that particular time.
I look down at my hands. Noticing the glass like sheen in my nails. Once I take the potion the sheen will blur and make my nails look ordinary. My hands, fingers, skin, eyes, everything will dull down once the potion starts its work.
It will help with the pain too.
The constant tug that starts somewhere in my throat and travels down to my navel.
I don't know how I had kept my voice steady on the phone when I spoke with him.
The shudder that had taken hold of me had made my decision then and there that I will have to take the potion constantly. That was the only way I would be able to concentrate enough to fix his daughter.
Fix his daughter. I can't say that an end to this pain and agony is the only motivation behind this decision.
Some deep yet unavoidable part of me wants him to feel something other than hatred for me. It is a soul deep desire. I had never fooled myself to think I would ever have his love, in any form or way. I am almost sure that the thought of me has never even passed his mind in past twenty years. While every breath I had taken, feeling the pull of him on my psyche even from this much distance has never let me stop thinking about him.
Respect? Gratitude? Yes, that is what I can hope for if I am successful in curing his child. And then I can finish this business with at least one triumph.
He evened out the life-debt with me. I saved him in Malfoy Manor, he saved me in the room of lost things. The boy that is frozen somewhere inside me and refuses to grow up, thinks it would be a final victory. Harry Potter will owe me once more. And will have no way to repay the debt as I will be long gone. That is if he cares to.
I open the drawer of my study desk that is situated just in front of the French window and take out the black-stained wooden box that carries one of my most prized possessions. The one thing that gave away my soul so easily into the hands of the one who saw no use for it.
The wand. That remained in possession of Harry Potter for three long years. The possession of this wand made him the master of the Elder Wand. The wand which he threw back in my face. Refusing to return the core magic that had also gone into his possession alongside it. What use is this piece of wood to me? Apart from the fact that it is still dipped in the scent of him. Still has the scorch marks from when it fought flawlessly for the savior of the world.
My heart beats frantically as my shoulder blades and finger tips itch. The Veela inside me recognizes the scent of his mate. And then the acute despair at him not being present.
Yes, my decision is right.
If Aali had felt such despair for twenty years straight he would understand.
Keeping the wand in hand I uncork the potion bottle swirling the dark lilac liquid inside twice before I drink it down in one swallow.
The silky slide of the tangy liquid goes smoothly down my palate. Warming and soothing. Soon the haze of soothed nerves is all I can feel. The sheer contrast of it from the sharp acute itching and restlessness is nothing less than a blessing. After resting and breathing deeply for a moment or two I finally bring the wand nearer to my face and inhale deeply.
The scent is still the most prominent thing, but it is tamped down. Not as strong or over-whelming as it was before drinking the potion.
The despair and the instinctual longing search is also quiet.
Very few people know how it is to live with an animal lurking inside them.
Even fewer know how it is to live with a being inside them.
A being, stronger, smarter, more magical and more instinctual.
No I don't suppose anyone who doesn't suffer from it will understand how it feels.
Satisfied with the reaction of the potion, I summon my travelling cloak, A sandy Dove grey coloured one, hand-knitted by mountain elves of Ulan Bator. Presented to me as a gift for my healing services. It is but one of thousands stored carefully in this house. I have given a list of things to Aali to be sent to the manor from my hoard of magical gifts. If all else fails, there are a few I can give a try to heal her. I remember that I will also need to settle the matter of my estate and nominate my heir.
I am glad I have someone in mind.
It was never easy for me to leave my identity behind like a snake sheds skin. But it had to be done and I have never had an easy time with it.
You see my banishment wasn't just from my homeland.
In his ignorance, atrocious ignorance he had banished me from my identity as well.
Ordered me to die a nameless death. And a nameless death can only come if you live a nameless life. In an obscure part of the world. So I had wandered to more and more obscure parts of the world. Even by muggle standards.
Mongolia, Kazakhstan, Turkmenistan, Estonia…gathering skills all over the place, healing mostly. North Cyprus is by far the most developed place I have lived in and it is not even present on most maps. The confusion regarding its status as a country and state is what makes it so perfectly obscure. Where the local muggles consider it a state under Turkish rule, the wizarding community consider it still a part of actual Cyprus. It helps that there is no actual wizarding community in Kyrenia only a small street with a few houses of wizards and of course the monastery which is the also the only institute that trains young witches and wizards in most Kyrenia and adjacent districts and is also perhaps the only magical healing facility in all of Cyprus. There is a small blooming wizard town in Lefkosa, the capital though. Which is well and good.
North Cyprus' sleepiness and insistence on not becoming popular is what made me make it my home. It's beauty and serenity is just a bonus.
I look up at the brooding sky as I make my way out of my Villa. I have lived in it for over ten years now. It is modern and very muggle. Rather smallish with three bedrooms, but that is just what it looks like. It was made by a great Turkish wizard architect who inlaid very strong protection and concealment spells on it while it was being built. Turkish are known all over the world for their Magical prowess when it comes to architecture and building. There is a reason the old Watch castle on the western shore remains intact after seeing two millennia worth of war and constant use. There is a reason the old monastery, turned abbey turned monastery again stands perfectly intact after hundreds of years of usage. This house has been home for a long time.
I would have made it magical if it wasn't because I had not chosen it for the magic in the first place. I only chose it for the First floor Bedroom adjacent study and large terrace space that looks over the monastery on one side and Kyrenia on the other facing to the north east which is perfect to grow herbal potion ingredients. And of course the garden space surrounding the house to cultivate some more difficult specimen.
Aali used to live in the bedroom downstairs but had moved into a small apartment in a muggle complex just five minutes' walk down hill. Not that he ever deigns to trek all the way, up or down. He's lazy enough to never take the brisk walk up or down and hasty enough to never stop and smell the flowers.
It is just so that it always rains on the significant days of my life. In North Cyprus, it only rains a few times every year and most of it happen during the winter months. As it happens today is one of those days. I slide out my wand from my pocket sleeve. It is not the one that binded me to my fate but another that is unique in its make. Sacred Olive wood and veela hair. It is a strange stale grey colour because of the mature wood and strange coloured wood it is made of. Monotone like the rest of me. It works for me very nicely and could have been temperamental but the Olive wood has a warm and meditative nature which neutralizes the volatility of Veela hair core. The hair came from me of course which makes this that much more efficient, like an extension of myself.
I look back once I reach the Wrought Iron garden gate and see Sarah and Aali standing just by the door to the house their faces grim. I smile a reassuring smile and turn away.
This isn't good bye.
It is as if the whole world is mourning my return white. The snow is much the rule in Wiltshire and I am surprised at how much I have missed it. Not the snow in general really, but the snow here. I am thankful for the tall shoes I had decided to wear because the snow is thick. I trudge along where I remember the pathway use to be until I reach the old and brittle looking Wrought-iron gate.
The Manor is pretty much the same. The Christmas decorations are up in the snowed-in garden. And there is only one part of the manor lit up.
I know that I can't stay. But I can't help wanting to stand here and stare at my childhood home where I was once such a carefree boy. It is good that the House-elves have kept it in such good shape. I remember the words my father used to repeat often.. before everything fell apart.
"This all belongs to you Draco, but mind you, never let the responsibility of it bog you down my son, the estate runs the estate, were you to not touch it ever for decades and decades, it will still run itself. And that my son is the advantage of good and sound investments. It is an extra good sense every Malfoy is born with. Cultivate yours."
I wonder if he had said it one of the countless times in a prophetic time slot.
It is almost after two decades of absence that I return.
And it is still just as it was when I had left it.
Just like I remember it from countless yuletides of my childhood. I can almost see a blond haired boy playing in the snow with house-elves dashing about and his mother and father sitting on one of the many wrought iron benches and criticizing on his attempts at making the perfect snowman. Father ordered the house-elf assigned to me to make sure that the snow man never failed to stand up straight and once I was done it was magicked into the most perfect snow man ever.
No matter what people might think. Someone loved that boy, if only it spoiled him endlessly. He was loved, remembered, adored and never rejected. Ignored at times yes. But never rejected. That boy had not known the dark legacy of being a follower of a maniac, his grandfather and great grandfather had left behind. That little boy's father had never let him fully understand the horror that was Voldemort until it was too late.
I can still remember the haunted tears of my father as I was allowed to visit him the one time a few days before he was scheduled to get the kiss.
He had begged me for forgiveness. Forgiveness for what his bad decisions had turned our lives into. He was already a broken man by then. I wondered what more could the Dementor take from him.
I had promised myself that day that I will always remember him as he was before I went to Hogwarts.
This house is full of lovely memories of my childhood.
It is a shame that it is the place most of my nightmares also took place in and in the end when one undoes the other the only thing left behind is blank numbness.
That is enough to sober me up from my nostalgic bout. The reality of things is too much to bear down.
I turn away from the manor and swiftly walk towards the apparition point to disapparate to London.
I am thankful that the apparition Point just outside the door to 's is the same as it was twenty years ago.
The landscape has not changed as much as the environment has. Since the war, the new freedom has brought in a lot of innovation especially with the celebration of Muggle culture that become more and more evident between wizarding communities across the world. For example. Everyone has a mobile phone. Be it witch, wizard, muggle, squib.
They all have the blasted thing. It is just easier communication. Of course the wizards have modified theirs enough to have almost ever-lasting battery. Lazy sods that they are.
Then there is the check point system and the memo-mirrors surveillance. They say it is much safer now since the amazing Hero of the wizarding world Harry Potter became the head of Magical Law enforcement. They say the current minister of magic, none other than the git Percy Weasley is just a puppet in Harry Potter's hand.
I personally do not know what to believe. Truth be told, I avoided most news like the plague. It was not my world anymore so I kept no track of it. I did not want to add to my already miserable circumstance.
I do realize that I am dressed quiet strangely and I am thankful for the presence of mind to cast a notice-me-not from when I was at the manor. I flick my wand to conjure a tempus and see that it is almost four in the afternoon; I am a few minutes earlier than I intended to be. It is raining here in London too, though it is a slight drizzle very reminiscent of the last time I was here and I am glad for a moment that things around here have changed so much.
Gathering myself and thoughts I finally step out of the Apparition booth. Pressing my wand tip to the identification pad and I am successfully recognized as Ustad Beyazlamak. I have a former patient to thank for that who was kind enough to unweave the magic enough to enter this identity and wand character. But then again, I really had saved his life and undone an almost impossible dark curse. A dark curse to which in the modern magical healing there is no reversal. I used a special method I had learnt from the Peers in Pakistan involving a plant called Tulsi and some spell work in Hindko.
I am hoping to use all my acquired knowledge to cure the little girl who lies in stasis inside the hospital. Is it cruel of me that I am waiting here? That I seem to be freezing in terror and apprehension?
The question is, what could be worse than what had already happened to me? There is no logic behind panic. There is no logic behind this needless tittering. Suddenly my heartbeat is too loud. My breaths are coming too soon.
I need to gather myself even more than I have because I have not even seen him yet and I feel like I am falling to pieces. No, it is all in my head. All in my emotions. None of this instability is real. My instincts are fully under control and the veela is calm and collected. This is just me. Cowardly Draco Malfoy.
"Get yourself together boy!" I hear my father's snarl echoing in the deep crevices of memory. It is the right push. I am not a coward anymore. In fact, by the time I am done, I will make the whole world see that I was never a coward. Fragile? Yes. Coward? No.
I uncurl the collar of my Dove grey cloak and cross the bustling street. Once I enter the sliding doors The warmth of the hospital reception hits me like a balm. I undo the clasp of my cloak slowly, buying time and remove my satchel while I look around. My clothes underneath are muggle, to which I switched a long time ago. It seems so has the rest of the wizarding world. I turn a critical eye to myself noticing that my cardigan and dress shirt are all in proper order before I remove the notice-me-not and make my way towards the elaborate reception desk. The witch working behind the desk looks up from the file. I smile my politest smile. She is youngish and very short. She must have a hard time looking down from behind this tall desk.
"Good afternoon, I am here to see Miss Lily Luna Potter. I was invited by her father as a special consultant, my name is Beyazlamak. If you could be so kind as to direct me to her ward?"
I realize that she is not hearing a word I am saying, her wide eyes are fixed on my face and her mouth is slightly open but not a word is registering.
Oh yes. The looks. I forgot about that. Though the potion should have tamped it down.
Must be the hair.
I look at the badge pinned on her. "Lucinda"
"Lucinda?" I say a little firmly than before.
It startles her out of her daze.
"Oh E-E-Excuse me… h-h-how can I help you s-s-sir?"
I hate making people feel this way.
"I am here to see Lily Luna Potter. Can you possibly direct me to her or maybe you can direct me to Mr. Albus Potter?" I am grateful that my query is finally recognized.
She is about to say when with a bustle a group of people enters. I turn to look and it is like a dead weight settles in my gut.
It is Granger and Weasley. They have aged, but Granger looks much better than I remember seeing her and Weasley though is a little bulky also seems to have aged better than most. Accompanying them is a younger looking version of Granger but with red curls and freckles. She is a pretty girl and has the same keen intelligent shine in her eyes that annoyed me so much in Granger. Dear god how petty I used to be. How mean!
This must be their daughter. Oh dear God. I am not ready for this! Why did I ever think this was a good idea?
I should have ignored the bloody letter. I should have stayed in my villa on the hill and cure common colds and snotty noses.
But then Lily Luna would have died and I would have never forgiven myself. For not saving an innocent child, for hurting Harry so irrevocably.
No. I have to do this. Only I can. She might still not survive but I will have done my part. I turn back towards the witch behind the desk. Granger and Weasley are deep in a hushed conversation and pass by without noticing me thank fully. And I am almost easing when their daughter suddenly comes and stands next to me.
"Miss Weasley! Mister…." She trails off and looks up at me questioningly. I take a deep breath. There is nothing to it. They have to know who I am.
"Beyazlamak, Ustad Beyazlamak."
"Yes… he is looking…"
"Beyazlamak!?" Miss Weasley even sounds exactly like her mother. I turn towards her reluctantly with a polite smile.
"Yes, I was invited to check on Miss Lily Luna Potter? I am looking for a Mister Albus Potter?"
"Oh dear Merlin! You…." Her blue eyes, her father's, are wide too. I notice that she carries a teal green robe on her arm. A healer in training. She can't be older than eighteen though. It seems that everyone just married straight out of the war and reproduced just as quickly. With the exception of me.
"I am Rose Weasley. Lily Luna is my cousin." She has finally composed herself quickly enough. She is holds out her hand for a shake.
"Miss Weasley…" I nod and take her hand politely.
Suddenly her eyes are shining and wet.
"I cannot tell you what an honour it is sir, to finally meet you. When Albus told me you were coming I could not believe it. But here you are. And nothing at all like I expected. You are so much…." She pauses for a moment and I can see a blush spreading across her cheeks.
Oh dear merlin. Save me from young girls and unwanted admiration.
I must admit though that part of me still finds it flattering. This is the real me. Not the veela me that is having this effect on her.
"Rose?" I hear someone call from behind me.
She still has hold of my hand.
"Albus! There you are! He is here!" she finally lets go of my hand and gives me a chance to turn around.
I recognize him without fail.
Only he is much better looking in reality.
My heart clenches at the resemblance.
He is making his way towards us with a frown.
"Albus… This is Ustad Beyazlamak." Rose beams at him and then at me.
The boy turns around to look at me so fast that I am afraid he will get a whiplash.
His eyes widen too.
"My God! Really?" he blinks his large green spectacle-less eyes at me. Cheeks flushed and lips parted in… awe I guess.
Oh dear Merlin. Save me from young girls' and young gay boys' unwanted attention.
"Mr. Potter"… I offer him my hand. He grabs hold of it almost reverently.
"I am so... So grateful that you are here. I half believed that you weren't going to show up."
"I am here Mr. Potter and rest assured that I will be here for as long as it takes me to heal your sister. I am here for no other reason."
Tears fill in those green eyes so much like his father's.
"Thank you.. Thank you so much!"
"I will do my very best by your sister . Let us hope that I am allowed to do so."
His brow furrows a little.
"Of course you will be allowed Ustad. The hospital has no right to contest you if we have given you our consent. I have even arranged for Lily to be moved to our townhouse if you require so." The determined set to his chin is all his mother.
I need one ally on my side. I turn to look towards Mini Granger who matches her cousin in expression. Two is better than one. Let us just hope that the new generation does not hate death eater Slytherin scum like their parents did.
"It is not the hospital I am worried about not giving consent, I know the law very well myself. It is actually your parents."
"Our parents? I don't think so Ustad, if you are insecure about radical methods and what not, let me tell you that we are all desperate enough to try anything at this point and if anything does become a problem, I vow, me and Rose both vow that we will do our best to smooth the way for your convenience as much as possible." They are both nodding at me amiably, like such a vow will undo everything.
Well, I will just have to take a chance at convincing then. Say more than two words and no insulting any Weasleys no matter how rude they are. Do not tear Ginny Weasley's throat out.
"It is not a question of what and how but who and I think you should know…."
"Oh look there is Dad, I will get this cleared up right now Ustad!"
I don't need to look. I know he is just coming in. Every part of me and my being is acutely focused all of a sudden.
Control control control control control control….
"Dad! Over here!" Albus Potter is waving to someone behind me.
The scent of him. Oh dear god in heaven! So beautiful! So so so beautiful! If I could just… Just once…
I clench my fists as hard as I can, digging my nails in my palms grounding myself on the ground that is ready to be parted from my feet and fly.
Don't lose it! Don't lose it!
Don't lose it!
Don't lose it!
Don't lose it!
Don't lose it!
"Dad! Ustad Beyazlamak is here. Ustad, this is my dad Harry Potter. The famous Savior of our wizarding world, bane of dark wizards, etcetera, etcetera…
"Hello.." the voice I hear.
Like a ringing bell in my body, soul, mind.
DON'T YOU DARE LOSE IT!
I turn around miraculously without stumbling.
Readying myself for everything and nothing.
From a box in the face to a swift Avada kedavra.
He is the most beautiful thing I have ever seen.
So beautiful, perfect. Oh God! Oh dear God! Finish me now.
"Potter." The word leaves my mouth curtly.
The curios and polite smile that was playing on his lips vanishes as soon as recognition settles in his eyes.
There is a pause of a heartbeat where he blinks his green green green eyes as if not sure of what he is seeing.
Finally the jaw clenches. Dear Unmerciful God! Rotten Luck!