The Twilight of Dawn

Chapter Eleven: Battling It Out With Aphrodite

With the knowledge of what the raven youth was feeling, Jasper turned the topic elsewhere and spent the rest of their spare period discussing the war efforts being made over in Iraq, both trying hard not to give anything of their pasts away but still pointing out flaws in the U.S. and British Army's plans, each falling into a strategically state of mind they'd developed during their separate times of duress.

It wasn't long before the bell was ringing and Alice and Edward were changed and waiting at the doors for the two of them. As soon as Harry was close enough, Alice latched onto his arm and began pulling him down the hall and out to the cafeteria, with Edward and Jasper following after in silence.

Quickly entering through the side door, they seated themselves at the table where Emmett and Rosalie were already sitting, with trays of food for both their siblings and themselves. Setting his bag on the ground beside his feet, Harry listened with half an ear as Alice prattled happily on about the newest winter collection of Abercrombie & Fitch, whilst watching Rosalie's' face set into a sneer as she faced away from his side of the table and spoke at a rate to fast and low for any normal human/wizard to hear. Harry, however, was no normal wizard, being a cougar animagus definitely had its perks; one of which was enhanced hearing.

"What the hell is he doing here?" Rosalie was snapping at Edward, who remained stiff backed in his seat beside Harry, fighting the urge to snap back at the tone she used in her reference to Harry, his Harry. "What is that human doing sitting here Alice?"

Alice, who had been trying to ignore the glare focused at her head, turned with a bright smile and a brief pause in her fashion talk to reply; "I invited him," before going back to her conversation with the wizard.

Glancing down at his pre-packed lunch of Caesar Salad and Vegetable Shake, Harry tried to hide his growing smile at the scowl that was now on the fury blonde's visage. Looking back to his new vampire friend on his right, he found her smiling with that knowing glint in her eyes again, almost like she knew he'd heard what her 'sister' was saying. Watching carefully, he saw her smile broadened and her head give a minuscule nod. With a grin of his own, he engaged her in a conversation on the pro's and cons of the newest clothing line of Ed Hardy, at the same time as listening to Rosalie rant.

"And why the hell did you do that? He's a human, hello?! Am I the only one who can see the danger this is posing to this family? What happens if others find out, huh? If more of these humans discover us? Who's fault is if then? Certainly not mine." She crossed her arms and with a final haunting glare to her family, turned to glare out the window beside her. Emmett looked between his wife and family a few moments before hesitantly putting an arm around her shoulders, which she shrugged off. "Rose, babe, you know we couldn't put ourselves in danger we're always being careful. I mean, come on, where's the fun in life without a little risk, not that there's any reason to think that this little raven would tell anyone; he's cool Rose, come on, it'll be okay." Try as he might, the burly vampire just couldn't get her to let it go; so he left her staring darkly out the streaked window.

With a sigh and a exasperated look shared between Harry and Alice, the former Gryffindor placed his empty containers back in his bag before turning to face the silent, brooding blonde. When a slight clearing of the throat caught everybody's attention, bar the vampire he wanted, he opted for a more direct approach.

"So, is something troubling you fair Lady Rosalie?" Ignoring the slight giggle Alice let loose, and the stifled laughs from Jasper and Edward, Harry continued staring at Rosalie, knowing just how uncomfortable his stare could make someone, even an aged vampire. She only lasted two minutes before the pressure of the wizard's eyes caused her to face him.

"What do you want?" Rosalie barely contained her snarl and it seemed Edward had noticed if his low growl was anything to go by.

"I was just wondering if there was a problem. You seem tense, is there anything I can do to help?" Harry asked with the trademark Marauder smile spread across his pale rose lips. Alice once again giggled by his side and Emmett was struggling not to chortle as he dearly wished, not wanting his wife's wrath to be set on him and have him kicked out of the bedroom for the next few nights.

"Yeah, you could help by leaving the table and staying away from my family. We neither want nor have any need for you to be here. If you know what's good for you, you'd do as I've said." She was keeping her voice down to maintain their conversation within the table, but everyone in the room could feel the tension; that was thick enough to cut with a knife, it was practically radiating from the normally indifferent table.

Sensing the stares the group were acquiring from the rest of the student population, Harry gave a discreet flick of the wrist with a silent whisper of 'Muffliato' in his mind. 'That should keep the rumour mill running farther from the truth.' Keeping his gaze on the blonde before him, Harry gave Alice's hand, which had found it's way to his, a squeeze of reassurance, as he knew she'd probably seen a worse outcome in his response. 'Probably like my outbursts at that Stanely chick yesterday…'

"Rosalie, you and I both know that that isn't true. Alice and Edward don't want me to leave, and I feel as though Jasper and Emmett don't want me to either. I've gotten to know everyone but Emmett and yourself, and I'd dearly like to change that, because you all seem like a really nice group of people and it feels like we would benefit greatly to be friends. I can tell you don't trust easily and that you're just trying to protect your family from things outside your control, and I admire you for that. However, I must let you know, it doesn't always work as you would like it to. Not everything planned out by fate can be changed. Trust me, I've tried…" The young wizard didn't seem to notice his sudden stop, he appeared to be lost in a memory from long before. Unnoticed, Jasper rested his hand on Alice's arm and signaled for her to bring Harry back to the present. Giving his hand a gentle squeeze, the smallest vampire watched as her newest friends' eyes brightened from the dull moss green they had fallen to whilst in thought, to their previous state of brilliant emerald green.

"I apologise if I appeared rude, I have had similar experiences in the past and I've watched as people make some of the biggest mistakes through actions they thought were protecting their families, where in the end... it killed them…" Taking in the stricken look that passed through the vampires' tawny eyes, Harry quickened another apology. "Again, I apologise. I did not mean to cause you any distress with my words Rosalie, just a friendly offering of advice. I hope you take them to heart, I wouldn't like nor do I want to see anything happen to such a loving family as yours. And please know, I do not wish to bring any harm to yourself or your family, Rosalie, none whatsoever."
The family around him stayed silent as he returned to his thoughts, no one knowing just what to say to the revelations and words spoken by the suddenly aged young man.

"Anywho, it's time I headed off for Physics. Thank you for allowing me to sit with you all today, maybe we could do it again sometime. Goodbye." With that, Harry stood with his bag and left the cafeteria just as the bell sounded through the school grounds, no doubt heading for the Physics' lab as he had said.

Just as he was going through the swinging doors, no one gave notice to the slight twitch of his wrist as he took down his muffling charm. Among the swarms of students heading out of the lunch room to get back to class, Harry stepped out of the hallway into the rain that was beginning to tumble from the darkened clouds, a satisfied smile settling upon his lips.

Wow.. that's probably the fastest update I've done since about chapter 3! I definitely have too much time on my hands while I'm at work. Okay, now, since I'm working 38 hours a week and still doing other things, I'll be mostly writing these chapters whilst standing at my counter completely bored out of my mind, so yeah.. if they seem to drift a little bit in parts.. my bad.

Anyway, thank you all for the lovely reviews you all sent me for chapter ten, I enjoyed reading them all greatly. Alright, someone asked me about Sirius' cousin and when he'd turn up in the story and about Bella and the La Push Pack. Well, Pyxis will be turning up within the next 3 chapters, not sure if it'll be just him or with the rest of his coven/family, we'll just have to wait and see. Umm.. about Bella.. I'm thinking of having her come into the story about the same time she comes into it in Twilight, which is after the Christmas holidays, right? Let me, because yeah.. never could figure out when it was that she turned up. And the La Push wolves will definitely be involved, how could they not with Remus being in town and around innocent naïve humans?

Okay, that's about it for me tonight, it's almost 11 and I start work in a little more than 8 hours, so I'll be off. Hope you all enjoyed that!

Djusk'a,

The Love Dragon.

P.S. Oh, completely weird thing I noticed at work last week, I served a woman with the last name Avery, just like the Death Eater! So weird.. but funny because she was really nice :D Also, just to let you all know, I've already started chapter twelve. Yeah, just to put it out there. Anywho…. Goodnight!

TLD