Black Swan

Chapter 20- Thin like paper


I always remember my mum telling me I was depressed. coming into my room, sitting down and telling me to go "seek help."
But I would push it off and tell her that I was just tired. Or that I was hungry.

I think deep down, I knew that i was. The summer had rocked my world on its axis. A complete 180 from what I knew my life to be. Death suddenly became like a friend, betrayal closely followed behind.
And even with Draco standing with me, helping me and being the light I needed. I still felt the looming dark fog.

I remember sitting on my phone one evening, scrolling through articles:

"10 signs that your friend is depressed"

"Online depression test"

'5 ways to help yourself out of the black pit of depression"

"Buzzfeed: my depression opened up my eyes to the beauty in the world"

Each one filled with captured images of sad people, who after the article would be smiling at the bottom, cured and happy.
The articles were stupid, pointing out that although you feel sad doesn't mean you ARE.

But I can bet with anything, that those that wrote all the articles, have never felt pain, quite like the pain that had nuzzled its self in my chest, beating along side my heart.

It had been 2 weeks, I hadn't moved from my bed but instead setting up camp, only moving to pee and then return.

The first four days I had spent calling and messaging Draco, snot induced voicemails of pain, begging him to answer and tell me why.
Messages of pain that eventually turned to anger as my mind decided to switch to an emotion that didn't soak my pillow.

And then I gave up.
My mum ventured out her room of sorrow and informed me that Dumbledore was dead, and my mind crushed the idea of Draco being a saint like a can.

Hogwarts belonged to Snape and the Carrow's, and Draco belonged to...Well, Voldemort.

I decided to go back, return to the hell that was Hogwarts and hope that what lay there was someone thing that mirrored the pain that sat in me. Perhaps he would be there? Perhaps he would see how sad and hallow I am, run back to me and beg for me to come back.

Sarah as still there, I couldn't leave her. Not after Lucas.
I wasn't even sure if she knew, or if she was aware about what had happened.

I gulped, wondering if she knew about Fae.


I had refused to allow my mind to wander over the conversation I had with Lucas, the thought of Fae becoming a death eater seemed so alien that it sat foreign on my brain, the knowledge felt like egg shells being pressed into my temples. A strange feeling that felt oddly familiar: pain.

News spread like wildfire around the magic community. Those that stood with the dark lord where sprayed over the newspapers. Many of them leaving school to fully join, their smiles plastered all across the front page. Smiles that I had grown up with, learned to trust and like.

I had even learned to love one of them in particular.

It was the ninth day of my isolation, when the first photo Fae emerged, black and white. Stark. Soulless.

She stood in a group of other young death eaters, each of them posing in front of a burning house.
They all stood, each of them staring directly at the camera. All were smiling but Fae, who was in fact holding her arms and looking towards the floor. But seconds before the image replays its loop, she glances up and smiles, a quick flash of uncertainty before it restarts.

Like the photograph loop, I replay the conversation with Lucas over and over again, the urgency in his voice mocking me as I didnt take him seriously.
But before he died, he told me that Fae had changed because of me? But the specific reason was cut short by green.

And I'm too scared to find out the reason, at least for now.

I sigh, my body feeling like lead as I force myself up.
My mum refused to acknowledge that I was going back, and instead acted like i was just going on holiday.

I guess having a severely depressed mother has its perks.
Even if it takes her true self away from me.

I swing my legs off the bed, standing and staggering towards the bathroom, deciding that a shower would do me well...Buzzfeed, perhaps you have saved me a little bit.

The water is scolding, burning my as I let it run down my body, wetting my hair nest and taming the smell my body had accumulated over the last 2 weeks from not washing.
Soap and the scent of orange sift through the air as I lather up, eventually switching it off and slowly towel drying myself.

Leggings, oversized jumper. The clothing of sadness and breakups.

My trunk had been sent to Hogwarts yesterday, along with the family cat Eve. Deciding that she would come back and be my anchor.
If blonde hair like lightening wont be there for me, then the black cat that loves tuna and chin scratches would be.

Plus, mum wont need her.

When I was younger, I asked my father what life at the Ministry, what was it like working with all the powerful wizards. All the spells and the documents, the elves and the big black corridors lined with doors of secrets and hushed conversations.
Sometimes he would sit and tell me about the "Secret" department of winged animals, and how if you were early enough, you could sneak and feed them and watch them stream him their necks against the rising sun.
Other times, he would sit in silence unsure on what to tell his young daughter, and sometimes he would simply reply with

"Ophelia, is a place filled with light and dark, and sometimes it feels like people are on different sides of magic."
My mum would hush him and I would be led out the room, hands over ears confused on what he meant with his remark. Soon forgotten when chocolate frogs and Bon bons were placed in my hand.

I understood now. That not everything in life is sunshine and rainbows, and that in fact it is actually very grey. Black and white no longer making up what the wizarding world had become.

I extend my wand hand in front of my face, breathing in through the nose and out the mouth, the photo frames of a happy childhood looking fake. Like the in frame photos you would get when you buy them? You know, the default ones you get in place of your ones? Filled with a sickly sweet family. Blonde hair and grey eyes cheesing back at you as if worries didn't exist.

My mum was sitting in the living room, the drone of a sitcom playing over the TV her eyes watching the shapes move around, but she wasn't fully paying attention to what was happening.

My mind wanders over memories and conversations, comfort threaded into the hugs and hair strokes my mum would give me. A woman so kind that she deserves to be protected at all cost:


"Mum, will I ever be like you?"

I ask, standing next to her as I watch her pick out a shade of lipstick.

"No darling, you will be better. Brighter. Funnier. You will be magic." She says, picking a deep red and un-popping the lid.

"Will I always look like you?" I ask, watching my mum apply her lipstick, smacking her lips together and then glancing at me in the mirror

"Always." She says, swivelling around in her chair to look at me. "But don't forget your fathers eyes." She replies, lifting my chin to look at them.

She was going out, where I wasn't sure, but the men that had been to visit the night previous struck a chord in my brain that was propelled forward questions.

"Will we always be with each other?" I ask a second question, watching her stand and walk towards her wardrobe, picking out a tight fitting dress.

"Forever and ever and ever my sweet Fee. Nothing will tear us apart."
She replies, stepping into the bathroom and putting on her dress, zipping herself up.

She walks towards me and wraps me in a hug, the smell of her perfume engulfed my nose with nostalgia, Vanilla and grapefruit.

"Will you ever forget me mum?" I press, watching her play with my hair in the reflection.
She hugs me tighter for a second and then pulls away sitting on her knees and looking me straight in the eye.

"Never. A mother can never forget their daughter" She finally replies, sweeping my hair onto my right shoulder, playing the the ends and then looking at me again.

" What if they dont see each other for a long long long time mum?"
I urge, my mind jumping with a thousand questions and a million wonders.

"Even if they don't see each other for a hundred years" She says again, giving my chin a gentle knock with her knuckles and then standing up straight.

I stand and ponder her answers, deciding that it would suffice enough.
I sit on the ottoman at the foot of her bed and watch her place earrings in her ear, the outfit dancing between the lines of funeral and business.

"where are you going mum?" I ask, swinging my legs.

"To follow the white rabbit" She replies making me giggle.

"White rabbits are in Alice in wonderland mum, where are you really going"

She doesn't reply, and instead toys with the lace of dress sleeve.
"I'm going for a mask fitting, it's Halloween soon silly"
She says, and before I can comment she kisses the top of my head and leaves the room, her heels clipping against the stairs.

"Halloween isnt for another six weeks..." I question aloud, allowing the conversation to whisper into forgotten.


I hold back the tears, and wave my wand in one quick motion.


And like a fire, the images of me and my life melted out of the photo frames, dissolving like candy floss as canyons of space appear in the images.

Mum and dad. But not me.
Christmas parties and alcohol. But not me.
Mum at the beach. But not me.
Dad sitting on a Ferris wheel. But not me.

I close the door quietly, deciding right there and then that I am never going to shed a tear again. Not anymore.
Somebody that has nothing to keep has no reason or need to cry.
Only fools cry, and a Slytherin is not a fool.

But a leader.

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