By: Sweet 16 Movie Buff!
Disclaimer: I do not own an otter. I am only two years away from having an alma mater. But I will never own Harry Potter. (I'm so proud, I made a rhyming disclaimer!)
Remus Lupin flinched as a large, hard hand clapped him roughly on the shoulder. Bruce Platt flashed him a malevolent grin, his grip tightening ever so slightly on Remus's thin shoulder as they strolled down the sidewalk, only two blocks from the town's elementary school. He was a rather brawny boy, older and far faster than Remus thanks very much to his position as midfielder for the football team.
In comparison, Remus was a small, scrawny boy of only eight, looking that at any moment he would fall ill on the spot. It was to such a small and shy boy that Bruce Platt was quite intimidating and one to avoid, particularly when he decided to be 'friendly.'
"How's it going?" another beefy hand came to clamp his other shoulder; Sam Corkins and his fellow cronies came to form a tight circle around them, looming tall and ominous over the boy.
He should have never walked home alone. He should have waited for his mother to come and walk him home once she had closed shop. The school librarian had always been kind enough to let him have a snack of milk and raisins while he read. He should have just waited in that nice, safe sanctuary with its dozens of shelves of books.
"Want to go for a ride, Lupin?" asked Davy Bones as the close-knit circle crowded him forcefully into a red Chrysler.
Before Remus could even reply, he found himself shoved into the backseat, crammed between Sam and Davy, who were holding him firmly in his seat. Bruce had slid into the driver's seat and was revving the engines before streaking down the street.
"Stop squirming, you little freak," Sam snarled as Remus began to struggle wildly at the sight of Davy producing a red handkerchief.
"NO! Let me go! Please - " but his protests were cut off abruptly as the cloth was tied between his teeth and the excess shoved into his mouth. Vainly he thrashed about, trying to escape his captors, but to no use. They were older. They were stronger.
They were bound to kill him. Maim him at the least.
Why had he ever told George Platt he could change into a wolf? He had been Remus's only childhood friend. They liked the same books. They both were fascinated by the muddy tracks they found by the riverbanks. They use to pretend they were hunters following a vicious bear who ate five children for dinner every night. But George had stopped coming to the library when Remus was there. He had no longer wanted to be Remus's partner in class. Sometimes Remus caught George staring at him, eyeing him fearfully and sometimes . . . with utter loathing. His only friend was afraid of him, of what he was.
The car screeched to a halt abruptly along a barren road, beside a grove of barren trees, only just beginning to bud. Leaves crunched under foot as the boys shoved a struggling Remus into the woods, pushing him face first to the ground when he dug in his heels. Sharp rocks and trampled brambles cut his hands, bloodying his palms.
Farley kicked him from behind and sent him tumbling; a thousand pebbles and rocks nicked his face and his bare skin. "Move!"
Remus struggled to his feet, helped along by another kick that sent him crashing into a tree. The ground underfoot was turning muddier and looser with every step, the going slower as they reached the banks of a coursing river. With the spring melts the river had turned into a quick racing flow of muddy brown water, which flooded the surrounding forest at times.
A large twisted oak, sturdy and old, stretched across the water, one thick limb several yards above the deepest part of the river.
He tried to scream, tried to claw the gag away from his mouth, but his stronger captors pinned his hands above his head as they bound his feet with thick rope.
"Ever played bobbing for apples, Wolf-boy?" Bruce asked cordially in mock as he swung down from the branch onto the bank, the other end of the rope in his hand.
Remus shook his head, his eyes glowing as he tried hard not to cry. Oh God they were going to kill him, they were going to drown him like he was the runt of a litter puppies. He wasn't good enough for their world and they were just going to toss him aside. Into the river.
No. No, please no.
Suddenly he was hoisted into the air by his feet, swinging wildly above the water. The river ran swiftly above his head, only feet below him, bubbling and roaring. Blood drummed in his ears and his limbs felt heavier, leaden with his weight. His legs were screaming for release. The strain was excruciating; his face twisted in a mask of agony, his eyes welling with mingled tears of fear and pain.
Just when he thought he might have been torn in two by the strain, he dropped into the icy depths. The current tugged at him as water filled his nostrils, burned down his mouth, and blinded him all in horrifying unison.
His lungs contracted and his vision began to swim as the ardent, flaming water pressed in on his eyes. His leg muscles were burning unable to touch ground, unable to contract the air they so desperately needed. His mind felt muddled and his head throbbed with an unrelentless warning: He had to surface.
The rope around his feet yanked sharply, cinching his ankles tighter. Carelessly they dragged him out of the water. Water poured over his face, adding to his panic, as he sputtered and gasped in glorious wisps of air through his gag. Just as his heart seemed no longer to race so painfully in his chest, Remus heard a crackling snap as the branch gave way and he was plunged back into the water.
Evangeline Owens, a little girl no more than eight, paced the far bank of the river, searching for the tiny mallowsweet blooms Paulos had sent her to look for. It had been one of those days where he had just known, for she had been in one of those dour moods again where staying indoors, even on such a foul day, was out of the question. So she and Paulos had skipped their lesson and had made out along the thin winding trail to the banks of the river. She loved the days they spent on the riverbanks, looking for early blooms to hang from the ceiling.It was fun, a game of hide-and-seek, and get a chocolate bar for a job well done.
"Purple star-looking flowers. Star-looking flowers," she muttered as she wandered the bank, checking under thickets and bushes for the small purple star-looking flowers she was supposed to find.
She heard jeering, and muffled screams. Frowning, the little girl looked up to see a small boy thrashing wildly above the water, dangling by his feet. There was a group of boys on the far bank, holding the rope that the boy was dangling from, jeering and taunting him. She couldn't hear what they were saying, but she knew from the terror of the boy's throes, that this was hardly of his consent.
Fury welled in her chest as angry words mounted on her tongue. How could they? How could they be so cruel? Her blood was boiling in her veins, her fists clenched at her sides. She wished a thousand foul curses on the boys, just so they'd let him go. Just so they'd leave that boy alone . . .
She opened her mouth to shout at the boys, but the words died on her lips as the branch fell into the river with an audible snap and the boy plunged back into the river. The boys on the bank scattered.
The little girl ran along the bank, screaming, "DADDY! DADDY!"
A tall man with coppery gold hair pulled away from his face in a low ponytail came running towards the little girl. "Evy! Evy, what's the matter?"
She ran to the man, sobbing, "It was an accident. I got mad. I didn't mean to make the branch break. I'm sorry. I didn't mean to. I didn't mean to."
"What?" the man frowned and crouched before the little girl, "Evy what are you rambling on for?"
She pointed out to the center of the river, her finger trembling, "In the river. They were dunking a boy in the river and it snapped. I didn't mean to. I didn't want to hurt him. I just wanted them to stop torturing him."
Without a second's notice the man waded quickly into the shallows, his wand removed from his jean pocket. He dove into the water, leaving the little girl crying and running along beside the bank, shouting he was still tangled with the branch floating along in the current.
Sticks and leaves scurried past above him on the surface. Sunlight filtered down into this odd world, breaking the water's dull bronze into lighter patches of glowing copper. The man stroked steadily through the water, having already spelled himself a bubble for around his head so that he might breath easier. The current pushed him along, steadily bringing him closer to the shadow of the mighty oak branch.
There was a rope, carelessly lashed to the branch, and tangled at one end was a boy, still and unmoving. He was rather small and scrawny; his tawny brown hair billowed out in the water, moving silkily across his face.
Using a Severing Charm, the man cut the boy free of his bonds and gathered him close before the current could pull him away.
Strong arms wrapped around Remus and hoisted him to the surface. His face broke through the surface and was bathed in chill air, a shock to his damp skin. But it felt so very far away from him. The gag in his mouth was far too effective. He couldn't breath. His mind was sluggish and his head pounding; he couldn't think. He couldn't breath.
There were voices around him. A little girl with rippling sable hair was helping a man, drag him out of the river. The man was barking orders to two boys, telling them to fetch their mother, tell her to stoke up a fire and brew some foul tea. Sharp cheekbones hollowed the man's face; a goatee brushed his upper lip and chin. The gag was torn from Remus's mouth, as someone's, the man's, hand pressed firmly on his chest. One, two, three. One, two, three.
"Breathe. Come on, breathe damn it."
"Daddy. Look at his neck. He has . . . gills."
"Merlin's beard . . . Finite."
Remus's body shook as he took in a strangled breath, a real breath, that dissolved into fits of coughing as he hacked up the remnants of the river.
Two hours later Remus found himself seated before a roaring fire, a large quilt wrapped snuggly around him while Mrs. Owens saw to it his clothes were clean and dry.
It had been the Owens family that had saved him from the river, and that had insisted on bringing him home to see him properly mended. The Owens' were a wizarding family, like Remus's, but they lived in the next village over. Their home was one of gray stones with a roof oddly shingled in golden terra-cotta tiles. Ivy climbed up the house front, lovingly framing the first-floor windows. The interior was one of exotic artifacts and cheap souvenirs from distant countries on account of Mr. Owens' business as an archeologist.
"Here," the girl his age with rippling sable hair, held out a steaming mug for him, "Mum brewed you some tea. It'll warm you right up, promise."
"Thank you," he managed a faltering smile before accepting the mug. Instead of leaving him alone with his tea, the girl sat promptly down on the stone hearth, her legs crossed neatly beneath her.
She watched him, her head cocked slightly to the side, apparently waiting for him to drink. He took a hesitant sip, then another, feeling a fuzzy warmth ebbing through his aching, numb limbs.
The girl smiled, "Does that feel better?"
Remus nodded mutely, swallowing another gulp. "Much better. What's in it?"
She shrugged, "Dunno. All I know is that it makes my insides all warm and fuzzy when Mum makes me drink it. For cold season, ya know."
"Oh," he nodded, cupping the mug in his hands to let the heat warm them.
"What's your name?" the little girl asked, tilting her head to the other side, making her look very much like an inquisitive cat.
"Remus. Remus Lupin," he amended when she raised an inquiring brow.
"My full name's Evangeline Owens. But if we are to be friends, you can call me Evy, like everyone else does."
"Why would you want to be friends with me?" he asked despite himself. No one had ever wanted to be his friend. They had been too frightened of him, of what he was, and had done their best to avoid him, not befriend him.
"Why wouldn't I?" she returned, frowning a little at his hesitation.
"Well, it's just I'm . . . well, you know a . . . " he trailed off, still torn by an inner debate battling out inside his head.
"A what?" she asked gently, still frowning with concern.
She didn't know that he was a werewolf. He studied her intently, trying to decipher some emotion from that young earnest face, but could find nothing. Nothing in her brown eyes would hint at how she would react; nothing in the furrow of her brow would reveal what she would say.
Friendship was about honesty, being open with the other, argued a part of his mind, the part that wanted to tell her right away. But he had been open with George, his only other friend, and that friendship had ended with him nearly drowned. Evy wanted to be his friend. His first real friend.
"A what, Remus?" she asked again, a more persistent edge to her voice.
"A wizard," he mumbled lamely, not looking at her. Could she see right through his lie?
But to his great surprise and relief she laughed, "Stop being silly! I'm a witch too, remember? Now, have you ever played Wizard's Chess? It's a bloody addictive game; I'll teach you if you like."
JUST A SAMPLER, SORRY!
Well, it's a teaser chapter and the prologue to the impending Remus/OC story, The Phantom, which I'm starting up again after months of piddling. I may not get it done before Christmas, but I am sure as hell going to try.
For those of you, if this is your first time reading any of my work, I write the entire story and then post it here on fanfiction. I find it is a much more considerate way to post, so I don't keep my readers in suspense and can make changes accordingly without having to wonder if it will screw up the plot or anything.
The Phantom is mostly a horror/angst story where a sadistic murdering ghost is released from within the Owens home where it had been imprisoned inside a trunk. The ghost, in its past life, was a Dark Creature hunter who went a little mad and now he's loose in London. The summer just got a little bloodier.
º¤ø,¸¸,ø¤º°°º¤ø,¸,¸¸,ø¤º°°º¤øº¤ø,¸¸,ø¤º°°º¤ø,¸¸¸,ø¤º°°º¤øº¤ø,¸¸,ø¤º°°º¤ø,¸¸¸,ø¤º°ºº¤ø,¸¸,ø¤ºANOTHER SONG INSPIRED FICLET
I was watching Fuse (it's a music video channel that plays nothing but rock :sighs: my heroes) and I saw the music video for Breaking Benjamin's "Cold" and I got the chills just watching it. So that's where the idea for this one-shot came from.
DESPUES DE OLVIDO . . .
I'll review your fic if you'll review mine, please.
Thank you so much!