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An Ease To Frustration...

Eden stormed across the grounds, towards the Quidditch lockers, her stride purposeful and determined. Other Gryffindor's passed her as she walked, but she didn't pay them any attention, her goal firmly in sight.

She'd been bored, doodling on parchment in an alcove by a window, when she'd seen the Gryffindor Quidditch team practicing. Curious, she'd moved herself around and watched them, finding it easy to pick James out of the crowd. As she'd watched, with fondness at first, she'd found herself stirred in a completely different way. A sweaty, flustered and dominating James was indeed a sight to behold...

Standing as soon as they'd made their way to the locker rooms, Eden pushed her way through the halls and out through the door, her blood running hot and needy.

She arrived at the doors, startling another Quidditch player as she pushed her way in. "Oi! You're not supposed to-" was all she heard before slamming the door in his face. She could hear the shower running and moved through the room, snapping at a scared looking chaser to get out, and get out now.

As she'd suspected, James, as captain, was last in the room, and as she watched him rinse his hair, her ears caught the chaser making a hasty retreat. Taking a deep breath, Eden kicked off her shoes, but didn't remove anything else, and she stepped under the water. Scraping the hair back from her face, she grasped James' hips and spun him, dropping to her knees.

Dream a little dream of me...

Draco returned from Andromeda's house emotionally exhausted, but upbeat. The past several nights he'd worked himself up to the point where he could go the entire night now using Lucid Dreams before the nightmares would start to creep in. He still couldn't wake without Harry's help, but the dreamscape felt less and less like a place a danger.

And more and more like a place of refuge. But at least he was rested for the first time... in as long as he could remember.

Andromeda would be weaned onto the potion gradually. Her mind was in a more ravaged state than his, after all. But he'd given her the potion last night, and today, she recognised him and spoke to him. They had contemplated moving her to Malfoy Manor, but there was too much chance that the proximity to Bellatrix's rooms could trigger the nightmares again. So she stayed with her team of mediwitches keeping watch. If there was one thing they did well, it was keep to a schedule of medication. Draco was relieved. They'd ramp up her dosage gradually while he and Snape worked on the next part.

Tonight they'd be testing an additional potion that should augment the first. Perhaps it might even allow him the strength to wake on his own. He made his way to the lab trying to shrug off the sadness that soon there would be no more excuses for Harry to kiss him. Each night, it had seemed easier, more welcome. Or perhaps that was just wishful thinking.

Back to the Manor

Severus finished what research he could do at Hogwarts, had a chat with Phineas Nigellus Black about Black family history, and then returned to his frame at Malfoy Manor. As he walked in and set the books he had borrowed from Madam Cornfoote onto the desk, he saw that Draco was bent over the worktable, his quill scratching furiously.

Beyond him, the previous batch of the potion for Lucid Dreaming roiled in a clear beaker, the second batch, not yet transformed by blood, sat in another for Andromeda.

They still needed to find a way to break the actual curse, though. A way to purge it from her system. Severus took a seat, watching Draco write, oblivious to his presence. Was there a cursed object to get rid of still? Or had the curse, once unleashed into Andromeda, no longer needed an anchor? What if the mad bitch had actually cursed her own blood, meaning that Narcissa, Scorpius, and Teddy would likely fall prey to it, too?

He had several useful books to read now on that score, and he opened one, but did not get to read more than half a page before Draco looked up.

Mocked by Parchment

The second time through making the potion for lucid dreaming went much faster and easier. Draco felt relieved, too, that having vented his spleen earlier in the day, Snape was much more tractable. He even convinced Draco to hang him for a short period of time, so that he could visit Hogwarts for more research, leaving Draco alone for a while.

Draco sat down with a stack of parchment intending to write to Scarlett.

But what could he say? Every time he tried to even write her name he felt paralysed.

After an hour of that, he finally wrote to his mother. He'd been writing her about once a week since the whole treatment of Andromeda began. Perhaps... perhaps she'd write Scarlett's mother to at least let her know that he hadn't succumbed yet.

Dearest Mother,

My apologies for the delay between last owl and this one, but unfortunately I cannot claim that innocuous delays are to blame and that you needn't have worried. The situation here is not good and I have only now mustered the energy to tell you more. You must promise, before you read further, that you will keep Father there in France. Having him here now would only make things worse for me. I wish you could come without him, but Tap the parchment and say "promise" and the rest of the letter will be revealed.
Promise...Collapse )

In the lab

Draco resisted the urge to tear at his hair. The lessons of potion-making about not doing so, not contaminating, et cetera, were too deeply ingrained to give in. But Snape tried his patience.

Transforming Alone...

Eden lay on the ground and squeezed her eyes shut, the pain forcing its way through her body. Everything ached, burnt...

The pain was no better and no worse than it had ever been, but the emotional pain ripped through her more strongly than the tearing of her skin ever could. To know that she was alone, after allowing herself to get used to James being there, seemed to make it a hundred times harder than it was. 

She screamed, the moon pulling at her once more, forcing her bones to creak and snap, her muscles to lash from the changing skeleton inside skin which always felt too small, too fragile, to last through it, to contain all of the agony. Sobbing once more, Eden rolled to her front, allowing her shoulder blades to push at her skin, her spine to elongate and add a tail. Fur began to sprout along her back, thick and grey, spreading over her. Her eyes burned as they stretched, moved apart, the irises and pupils changing to accomadate her new vision.

All through the change, all she could think was that James wouldn't be there to soothe her trembling limbs, to brush his hand through her fur and talk to her like she was simply an animagus, rather than a werewolf; dangerous and powerful. Infectious. 

As the long, agonizing transformation overcame her and Eden waited for the pain to stop, she howled mournfully at the moon, telling it her woes. 

James

She'd never felt more alone in her life.
 

Eddies in the time continuum...

{despite inconvenient facts such as time continuing to pass, the current thread is only hours after this one}

Ginny wasn't home when Harry returned, but his note was gone, so she must have read it. He didn't think much about it until after a solitary dinner, late in the evening, when it came close to time to check in on Draco. And she still wasn't about. Not that late nights were unusual for either of them, but usually they let each other know....

He decided that the previous note about his whereabouts was still informative enough, and hopped into the Floo without leaving another.

My sixth thread in a row, or something

James thumbed anxiously through the pages of Bane: Keep Your Family Safe From Werewolves before discarding it and picking up the next one. He had a stack of books beside him which he'd taken out in pretence of doing a research project. Well, it was a research project, it just wasn't going to get assessed.

He felt like he was onto something, though he knew it was ridiculous to think so. Potions Masters, Charm Experts and other wizarding academics had been working on a cure for lycanthropy since his father had been at school, he knew, and he'd read through all of that research already. There were numerous theories on how the Wolfsbane potion could be improved, but most of them had either lacked sufficient test subjects or had turned up too many unfavourable results to spark any case for further funding.

He wasn't sure why he was looking, only that he would feel guilty if he didn't. He didn't even have his NEWTs in Potions yet, so the idea that he could come up with something that all those people hadn't yet was highly improbable. Still. It was fast becoming an obsession. He could only hope Teddy didn't find out.

He picked up the next book, taking a quick glance around. The library was nearly empty, it being quite late, but he still didn't fancy the idea of someone taking a glance at his notes. Satisfied, he went back to the book, his lips mouthing the words as he read.

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All Was Well - A Post-DH RPG

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