Ugh with the titles. Had to be "Again" series. Couldn't be something easier to make a title out of. Edit - Title changed. Only slightly better, but it'll do.
Don't ask where the hating Christmas thing came from, I personally love it.
Dedicated to LupinTonksLove who requested Teddy's death. That doesn't sound right, but you all know what I mean. I hope.
The Triangle Complete Again
Summary: Part of my Again series. He was a baby when death took them; a lifetime later, death reunites the family it had torn apart.
He'd always hated Christmas. He was the only child - then person - he'd ever known to not like the season. Victoire had loved it. From mid November to early January she was always smiling, dancing around, singing carols.
They'd had a Christmas wedding, and he knew it was her way of trying to turn the time into something positive for him. She was the only one he'd ever admitted his hate to. It hadn't worked; he simply connected his wedding to winter, and kept the old feelings towards Christmas.
His reason was simple, and one she'd understood. Christmas was a time for family, and while Teddy was accepted into the Weasley clan effortlessly, Christmas was the one time of year where that wasn't enough. It was the time when he was aware that he was missing something important.
Teddy Lupin had no memories or the woman who'd birthed him. She was little more than a photograph to him. He didn't know the man who'd fathered him. He was barely more than a bedtime story.
So Christmas was hard, had been since he was old enough to understand that most little boys had parents and he didn't. Old enough to understand that one crazy, albeit powerful, wizard had torn apart lots of families.
Had torn apart his family, and so had shaped his future.
It had taken only one night for a baby's life to be formed. One night for his parents' lives to end, one night for his family to be torn to pieces.
Once, trying to get him excited about the holiday, his grandma had told him to make a wish on Christmas Eve, because Christmas was magic and his wish might just come true. She couldn't have known what he'd wish for, that Christmas Eve and everyone that came after until he was fourteen. She couldn't have known, and yet it had taken him a long time to forgive her for that lie, for giving him that false hope. For making him wish for just one hour - that was all he'd ever wished for - with his parents, for letting him go to sleep thinking that this year, it may just come true.
It never did, because not even Christmas magic could bring back the dead.
Teddy dressed himself quickly, a little confused. The last thing he remembered was falling asleep in the armchair in the living room. Fully clothed. The next thing, he was slumped on a blank white floor, without clothes.
When Teddy then realised that he was around twenty years old - he certainly hadn't been that age when he'd sat in the chair - he understood. Hadn't Harry once told him a story, of a blank white canvass that slowly took shape? Hadn't he explained that this was a place just before death, where choices were to be made?
It was the twenty-ninth of December, and when Teddy finally realised he must had died, sat in that armchair, he wondered if that was fate's last joke on him - that he should have to live through one last Christmas before death. Of course, it was better, now he was so much older, and had Victoire and his own children and grandchildren. But some habits die hard, as does hate.
Teddy realised where he was almost before the whiteness had finished creating colour and texture. Harry's back garden. It was understandable that he would find himself here - the place of many happy memories, the place he and Victoire had married, the place where his own children had chased each other around on several occasions.
Teddy hesitated, looking slowly around, uncharacteristically nervous. He wasn't a nervous person. But who wouldn't be nervous when venturing into something so unknown?
"Where now?" He muttered aloud. "What now?"
And then he heard his name called, a high, excited voice. And turning towards it, he saw two people he'd only ever seen in pictures, in his dreams. He was frozen to the spot, so securely he may have thought a Devil's Snare had seized him. And so he waited for them to reach him, the woman half running, her face alight with laughter, the man at a slower pace, watching him intently, as though trying to commit his face to memory.
Of course, Remus Lupin had long ago committed his son's face to memory.
Tonks reached her son first, flung her arms around his neck and was unabashed when he didn't react. She simply waited, until Teddy was able to lift his arms and hug her back.
"Mum?" He murmured, testing the word. He had used it before, of course, many times. "Ask your mum" was a phrase he'd often used, as well as things like "Tell me about my mum?"
But using it this way, directed to someone like this, was something he'd never done. And so when Tonks burst into tears, and drew away, he winced.
"Sorry - I - sorry -" He said quickly.
"Dora." Remus had reached them, and put a hand on his wife's back. "It's fine." He told Teddy. "A little overwhelming, that's all." Remus swallowed, then squeezed his son's shoulder, almost as though to see if he was real.
"I...Dad?" Was all Teddy could think to say, a part of him desperate to test that word out too. Remus nodded, and then he too hugged his son.
Teddy stared at the two of them for a long time, taking in his mother's pink hair - more vivid in reality that any picture could convey - and the shape of his father's face, the jaw line he'd inherited.
"But you're dead." Teddy said, and before his parents could even exchange looks, it clicked into place. "But I am too, aren't I? So you've come to show me what to do next, right? Like Dumbledore came to Harry?"
"Yes." Remus nodded.
"I always liked that story." Teddy murmured, half to himself. "I used to hope that when I died, it'd be you two that came to me."
"We heard." Tonks told him. "Every wish you made, every time you spoke to us, every time you cried...We couldn't get to you. I'm sorry."
"We were watching, looking out for you." Remus told him softly. "No matter how alone you felt, we were there."
Teddy nodded. "Sometimes...sometimes I felt like someone was there..." It was a little hard to admit it, actually, and not something he wanted to get into. "What happens now?" He asked, wondering if this was the only time he'd ever get with his parents.
"You'll see." Remus said, before Tonks could speak. "When you're ready to go on."
Teddy looked around the garden he'd always loved, and thought about his life. It had had it's ups and downs, but now it was over he supposed it had been a pretty good life.
"I'm ready." Teddy murmured. "But if I go on...does that mean I won't see you again."
Tonks smiled. "You can hang around for as long as you like. The next life can wait until you're ready to let go. As long as you need."
"The next life." Teddy repeated, and Tonks glanced at Remus.
"I know, I know." She said, before he could speak. "But you knew I was bound to say something I shouldn't." She turned her attention back to Teddy, as Remus smiled. "Well, let's go then, if your sure you're ready."
"This way." Remus said, and Teddy nodded. The three of them began to walk, Teddy slightly nervous and apprehensive, his parents relaxed and calm.
They were complete again, after a lifetime apart. There was time, time to get to know each other, time for everything Teddy felt he'd missed.
"Oh, and Teddy?" Tonks voice carried back around the garden before they disappeared. "How can you not like Christmas?"