Alena Valentine

For the Rainbow Challenge on the WB Harry Potter Forums (I was bored).

Emotion(s) chosen for color: Anger, Passion, Love (Color is RED)
Anything else?:
set in Narcissa's seventh year at Hogwarts, about 1972.

Narcissa loped gracefully down the corridor towards the Charms classroom, her lithe figure standing out boldly in the crowd of Hogwarts students. She was one of the tallest girls in Slytherin now, since her sister, Bella, had graduated. There were few girls that came close to her five feet and ten inches, which was one of the few reasons that she usually stood out in a crowd.

Many girls gossiped that she was really a succubus in disguise. She was properly offended at these accusations, of course. She was only a teenage girl, after all. Was it her fault if boys stared like goggle-eyed imbeciles at a pair of nice legs?

Narcissa smiled to herself as she took her seat next to Silvius Davis. She'd never held any particular love or hate for the attentions she gained from boys, having become accustomed to it over the first three years of her Hogwarts career. However, she'd never had anything to get accustomed to with Davis.

Silvius was a charming boy with a stunning smile. Much like many of the rich Slytherin youths, Silvius had become comfortable with the best and most beautiful things in the world. Narcissa, lovely as she was, simply wasn't a love interest for Silvius.

"Cissy, love, do you have those notes from yesterday? I seem to have misplaced my own."

Narcissa curled her mouth in a slight smile, fishing the notes out of her bag.

"Sil, you're much too forgetful for your own well-being." she replied, chuckling.

He took the parchment from her with a chuckle of his own. She loved his laugh. She'd never been able to resist smiling after hearing his laughter.

"'Cissa, darling!"

Narcissa cringed at the shrill voice. She'd never held much appreciation for Belladonna Parkinson, nor her awful falsetto trill. After years of suffering the pug-faced girl's antics and the rumors that flooded the conversation when the Parkinson family name was mentioned, Narcissa could hardly stand to speak to the girl.

"Philip and I are just dying to know—"

When she said 'Philip and I', of course, she referred to her fiancé and first cousin,Philip Parkinson. The Parkinson family's tendency to marry their first cousins was usually the source of most of the aforementioned rumors. No family, not even the Blacks, stayed that close in the family when they married.

"—why you haven't told me about you and that delectable Lucius Malfoy?"

Narcissa's forced smile vanished from her features without a trace that it had ever been there.

"Wh-Whatever do you mean, Belladonna?" Narcissa inquired, tensing unconsciously.

"Your engagement, of course!" the clueless girl replied, vacant smile in place. "Mother sent word about it in her last owl. Something about how Druella wanted help with planning, or some other thing. I doubt it, though, as Mrs. Malfoy has impeccable tastes..."

Narcissa didn't listen to the rest of the other girl's frivolous talk, losing herself in her own incredulous thoughts. Father wouldn't let her marry me off to that awful Malfoy boy, would he? She thought a moment and decided quickly that, given the Malfoy's large account at Gringott's, he would do precisely that… No matter how much she protested to it. Cygnus Black had never been described as a kind man, not even when speaking with his three daughters. There was no way Narcissa's tears would sway him.

Bellatrix was his undoubtedly his favorite daughter, made in his image. She'd married well, declaring her 'love and undying loyalty' to Rodolphus Lestrange at the Black family Christmas party last December. She had always been quite dramatic, in addition to subservient to their father's wishes.

Andromeda, a beautiful girl, was hardly considered family now, having told their father and mother to their faces that she loved a Muggleborn, Ted Tonks. Narcissa had cried many tears for her sister the day she was burned from the family tapestry.

But her? Narcissa Black, the most exquisite and charming of the Black sisters? Why would her father ever have her married off? Especially to a horrible little vulture like Lucius Malfoy, the scum… She was still quite young and irrefutably striking as far as looks went; why would her father have to force her hand? She could easily find a man to marry on her own.

Anger flared in her chest, engulfing her heart and burning against her ribs. She felt the blood rising in her cheeks, coloring her furious in one wave. How dare he agree to this arrangement! How dare he!

Flitwick's lesson ended quickly, finding Narcissa so angry and confused that she couldn't find it in herself to pay attention. She packed her things in a rush, fleeing the classroom as quickly as she could. She had a floo to send.

"The House of Black!" she shouted, tossing the powder into the embers.

A house elf's head appeared in the flames. Creepy? Corky? Crotchety?

"Kreacher is here, Mistress! What is the Mistress needing?"

Kreacher. Right.

"I would like to speak with my father. Now."

Kreacher, sensing the infamous Black temper's impending arrival, scurried to find Cygnus quickly. Her father's handsome face appeared a minute later in the flames. He gave her a charming smile, the one that had supposedly won her mother's heart, and an endearing greeting.

"Hello Father." she replied, anger burning still, threatening to burn her up. "I need to speak with you about something."

"Yes, of course, darling. What do you need?"

"Why have you not told me of my impending nuptials to that rat-faced, foul-tempered little wretch?" she snapped, forgetting her reverent mannerisms that had been instilled in her since birth.

"Why, Cissy!" he father exclaimed, still smiling that smile. "Why ever could you be so hostile towards the young Master Malfoy?"

"The fact that you've engaged me to be his wife against my will may have something to do with it, Father." she retorted, her tone dry and eyes burning. "What ever happened to marrying any respectable boy I liked?"

"Well, dear, that all changed when that traitor decided where her loyalties lie."

Andromeda. How could it have anything to do with her?

"When she married the Muggle boy and left us, it impacted you very much. She was going to marry Lucius, dear, but decided her own pleasure was more important than her family's prosperity. Bella has already married well, but not well enough, I'm afraid.

"The rich have to marry rich to stay affluent, Narcissa. You're our family's only hope. You simply must marry Lucius or we will fall prey to our debts. How could you stand it, dear? To be middle-class? Would you put your mother and me through the shame? Just for your own personal gain?"

The blonde teen pulled her head from the flames, taking a moment to herself. She stared into the furious green inferno, its flames licking the inside of the fireplace. That was what her family's pride was. They were a self-seeking inferno of burning green, the color of envy and arrogance. Consuming everything in its way, gaining what it needed to continue on it path. Narcissa and her happiness were its last source of progression… Soon, too soon, she could see herself being engulfed by the flames of her family's hauteur. The fire in her chest burned a vivid red, vibrate and angry.

She thought openly, for the first time, of Augustus Zabini. Her lover. Her Adonis. The young man that turned her flames of anger, to amorous embers of love, burning the color of magenta that streaked across the sky at sunset. She was the inferno now, as she thought sweet thoughts of Augustus. He breathed fiery, burning breath into her embers, adding to her intensity. He was the one she was meant for, made to be with. Once he had said he was the Romeo to her Juliet, speaking of some Muggle poet's famous love story.

He'd never see how ironically correct he was now.

She let a tear spill down her cheek, swiping at it before it touched her chin. She would not she her father these tears. They did no good.

The fire in her heart spread again, burning a horribly dark crimson. Narcissa knew that after this day, she would never forgive her father. She knew that her almost-black fire stood for the pure, sickening hate that flared up in her now. I'll hate you 'til I die, Father!

She squared her shoulders and thrust her head back into the emerald flames. "Okay, Father." she murmured. "I'll marry Lucius."

"You won't regret this, my peach."

Something makes me think I will.