A/N: This was inspired by the song 'Drawing Crazy Patterns' by Texas. It's good, you should listen to it. I should be writing an essay right now but...well. Anyway. Here we are. Hope you enjoy it. =]
Drawing Crazy Patterns.
The wind whipped around him, the collar of his coat flapping wildly as he fastened more buttons to try and gain some semblance of control over his clothing. He stared out to sea, watching the waves crashing onto the shore, the noise filling his head until he could no longer hear the squawks of the gulls overhead. He looked down at the sand. In the summer it was a warm vivid yellow. Now, however, it was more of a dull, greyish colour.
He fiddled absent-mindedly with his ring, twisting it around his finger, trying to find a comfortable spot for it to sit.
He looked down at the sand again, dipping the toe of his highly polished shoe into it and tracing a line in front of him. He then took a step back, placing his toe at the halfway point of the line and pulling it towards him. He shifted round a little, and did the same again, and again, and kept on doing it until he had drawn an elaborate asterisk in the sand.
He shrugged and kicked the sand, covering his masterpiece before he started again, except this time he decided to write his name.
He kicked the sand over it again, and wrote more words, random this time, the first ones that popped into his head, each time covering his tracks as soon as he had finished. He froze when he realised he was writing the word 'help' for the seventh time.
"What sort of help are you after? A helicopter? A psychiatrist?"
Her voice interrupted the sounds of the waves and he turned around sharply, jarring his neck, his hand shooting up to rub the pain away.
"Hi," he said, ignoring the question, before he returned to his drawing, his foot sending the sand flying over his work once more.
"A psychiatrist, then."
"How are you?"
"Fine. How are Rose and Hugo?"
"Same as ever."
"Something like that."
"You could have picked a better gene pool to start splashing around in, you know."
"Says he who's married to his own cousin."
"She's not my cousin."
"Not first cousin, anyway."
He turned in time to see her soft lips twisting into a grimace, her brow creased above her eyes – eyes that were still tinged with that same alertness that came from being on the run for almost a year when she was a teenager. They were still open a little too wide, and inspected their surroundings a little too thoroughly. It was one of the minor after effects of the war, but he still didn't like it.
"I saw in the Prophet that Potter got Dolohov...took him long enough."
She frowned disapprovingly at his jibe.
"It's been nine years," he said, attempting to justify it to her.
"Dolohov's quick...and clever. You know that."
"I thought Potter could do anything though."
She almost smiled and he took her by the hand, leading her away from the uneven lumps and bumps in the surface of the sand.
They headed down towards the sea, fingers laced loosely together, stopping just short of any spray that might come into contact with them. The fierce sea breeze dragging her bushy hair in all available directions. She attempted to get it under control with her free hand but gave up after a few seconds.
They continued walking, though he wasn't sure how long for. It could have been minutes, it could have been hours. They stopped when the sky began to darken and the warm orange lights of the nearby town flickered on in the distance. The tide had come in further now, and the waves were more vicious, the rhythm of the water dragging back and then crashing onto the beach growing faster, the later it got.
"I don't want to go home."
She waited patiently for an answer, glancing down at the ever-approaching water and taking a step back, closer to the sea wall.
"I feel like I'm dead inside," he finished, running a pale hand through his blonde hair and sighing heavily.
"Sorry," she said, though she was still smiling, her lips trembling as she held in a chuckle. "It's just...twenty seven years on this planet and you've only just worked that out?"
He almost laughed with her, though didn't quite manage it. She had a point though.
He kicked sand at her ankles and she raised an eyebrow.
He began tracing his toes in the ground once more, making no discernible images, just shapes and lines, edging closer towards the sea wall as the water continued advancing. She watched, arms folded, cheeks flushed with cold.
"Come on," she said at last, holding out her hand. There was only a narrow stretch of beach left now.
He took her hand, and they walked up the stone steps to the main road, the hundreds of sea front car parking spaces empty, amusement arcades closed for the season with their graffitied shutters rolled down, bolted against the chewing gum stained pavement.
"What d'you think would happen if I left?"
"Scorpius would grow up with an absent father."
"Isn't that enough of a reason not to leave?"
"Look what my father turned me into."
They were silent for a few minutes.
"Would you come with me if I did?"
"See you soon."
She disapparated, as she always did after he'd brought up the subject of them going away together. He glared at the pavement, kicking a half empty drinks can, sending lemonade flying all over the ground.
He walked for six more miles before he could bring himself to head back home, to his wife and son.