Lucky for Harry, one of the few things he learned from the Durleys was baking and cooking. So that's what he planned to do. Served baked goods and breakfast.
Now Rose had a small breakfast menu already planned out, with cakes, pies, donuts, cupcakes, and pasties served all day. The things she didn't know how to bake, the kind ladies that she hired to be the kitchen staff were more then happy to make. And after Sookie Stackhouse's grandmother (Who now insisted on called 'Gran') gave Rose some great local recipes like upside-down cornbread cake, homemade pecan pie, southern sweet tea, and southern spiced tea, She had more then a full menu.
looking outside the front window of her eatery She could see old wooden plague that read 'The Black Rose Bakery". named that for obvious reasons. It was set up inside the Louisiana Villa that Sookie had helped her out with… funded with the money gained after selling off two of the black family homes. (She gave number 12 quietly over to the Weasley family, but Harry couldn't bring himself to sell the house in Godric's hallow. It was still under 'Harry's' ownership.)
With the help of a construction crew and a few food vendors it was up and running. And it had only taken two weeks. After the heavy mix of cleaning chemicals, indoor and outdoor paint, and magic even the drive way of the aged villa looked brand new. She had put a lot into breathing some new life into her new place.
She smiled proudly at her work as she grabbed a soapy rag and finished wiping down the last of the eatery's tables. She WAS opening for the first time in a few hours, and she wanted to make sure everything was done. The Villa's old dining room had been turned into the bakery's seating area. When you opened the dining room doors, it lead right out to the wrap-around porch and a beautiful green backyard. With just a few tables and chairs it could become an outdoor eating area, but as Rose looked outside and towards the bright backyard she knew would wait for cooler weather to do that… No one in there right mind would eat outdoors in this kind of heat…
Even the kitchen was changed. It now housed two extra baking ovens and a large walk-in cooler. And the liquor bar was changed into a pastry showcase and cash counter…
All and all, it's a huge change… But it all looks wonderful.. Rose thought to herself as she finished cleaning her table. Now if only I could figure out what to do with the REST of the house. She ended sourly.
She only needed the dining room, kitchen, and parking lot for her Eatery, and one bedroom for herself… But she had another 3 bedrooms, a lobby, and a grand staircase on this floor, as well as a entire second floor she needed to figure out what to do with…
She crossed her arms and sighed as she thought it over… Maybe rent out the rooms? Bed and breakfast?… Make an office for herself somewhere?.. She shrugged lightly. She'd figure it out later…
Right now, She was truly ready to open shop.
Opening day was a surprising treat. Apparently Sookie, her best friend Tara, and Gran had been spreading the word. She had a lot of customers from Merolettes, The local Baptist church, The parish road crew, and a un-planned gathering of 'The Descendants of the glorious Dead". This was a group of people that could trace there blood line directly from someone that had served in the Civil war. All on the side of the South. Rose thought that the name was a bit much, but the people where kind and sweet, so she had no qualms with letting them take over the south side the of the eatery. (Much to her own silent amusement.)
It was during this opening rush that Rose learned something very important… Everybody knew everybody in Bon Temps. Take Sam Merolotte, for instance. Sam owned the dinner bar Merolottes that Sookie worked at, and knew 90 present of the people that walked though his doors.. This was because Merolettes was pretty much the only Lunch and Dinner restaurant in town. Rose was glad when Sam decided to stop by and take a seat close to the pastry counter. Without his input, and with how fast she was working, she was sure would have forgotten at least one person's name.
Sam had been a great help. He had commented lightly on how "Jimmy Botehouse, Brown hair? He likes his food Burnt.. REALLY Burnt.." or "Lafayette likes a lot of Sugar.. So just put some on the side.." and "All Belafeaurs act that way towards other people.. Well, except for Terry, but he's a special case."
And in between these helpful hints, Rose found out why Sam was helping Rose out, and was glad she was opening the Eatery.
First, Sam's restaurant didn't serve Breakfast. Half of the Restaurant was actually a bar, so it was open very late. So late, that most of the waitresses and cooks where to tired to come back to serve customers.
Second, This was now the ONLY place to sit and have breakfast. The grabbitquik has a few breakfast items and a 10-year-old coffee machine, but that was it. And Sam himself was looking forward to taking advantage of the new breakfast spot. And the last reason…
"I was wondering if I could sell some of your cakes and pies at my place.." Sam mentioned shyly, grabbing Rose's full attention. She turned and blinked at the stocky ash-blonde man, as she paused her transaction with the customer in front of her.
"What do you mean?… You want me to bake for your restaurant, too?" Rose said, as she grabbed two cherry cream donuts, and put them in a bag for her customer.
"Kinda… I want to serve some more deserts.. But all I can really give out is Surbert and ice-cream.." He said, placing aside his pecan pie. "I'd like to give my customers some other choices. So, Do we have a deal?.."
Rose handed the bag to her waiting customer as she smiled kindly as said a quick 'Have a good day.' Sam had been wonderful to her so far, and Sookie said he wasn't one to steal business from anyone… and by supplying cakes and pies to Sam, she was getting more business as well… That didn't to bad to her. She turned back to an anxiously awaiting Sam.
"Sure thing.." Rose said with a bright smile. "I'll bake them for you, as long as you're sure you don't let them go to waste."
Sam smiled back at her. "I Promise."
And in the one day Rose won over all of Bon Temps. With her quick-turnout of Pasties and Breakfasts, The homey southern endearment of her venue, and British charm that was all her own. She made a place for herself in the tiny southern community.
Rose pulled her old van into the back lot of Merlotte's. This was her first delivery today, and she still had 4 more places to go. The second was to another restaurant the next town over, another for the grabitquick, and a cake for a party that was going to be held today on the outskirts of town. The store was closed about half a hour ago, so now she was busy bring over sam's order and few left over croissants and pasties as well. They didn't sell that well today, and she didn't want to throw them out. Sam was always glad to take care of these "extras" for her, and she was just glad they didn't go to waste.
As soon as she opened the car door, Sam and Terry opened the restaurant door, and stepped out. It seemed that they had been expecting her, and it was then that Rose realized just how load her large delivery van really was. She smirked sheepishly to herself, and hopped out of the driver's seat to dropped to the ground. She only dropped a foot or so, but enough to have Sam smirk at her.
"You know, I always forget how small you are… Until I see you do something like that." Sam jeered as Terry gave a kind grin, and went to the back.
"Yes, Well.. I'm still a growing girl." She pulled the lock clasp under the driver's seat. This opened up the two back doors for Terry and Sam. She then joined in bringing the baked goods into the restaurant.
"So your order was; Two pecan pies, Two chocolate cakes, One apple pie, One Cherry pie, one peach pie, and an up-side-down cornbread cake. I also got you some extra pasties and Croissants, if you want."
"Sure thing…" Sam called from inside her van as he started grabbing some of his order from the back. "And you got the birthday cake, to, Right?.."
Rose paled, and looked at Sam in shock. "Birthday cake?.. What birthday cake?"
"Hoyt's birthday cake.. His mama decided they where going to have the party here, so she said she's just have you drop the cake off when you stopped by.." Sam looked at Rose and frowned. "Didn't his mom call you?.."
Rose sighed heavily. "No, She didn't, but I have the cake with me anyway… lucky that."
All three of them with arms full of pies and cakes then walked into the restaurant's kitchen. They laid out all of the pies around the table in the back of the store, when Rose turned and gave a wave at Lafayette, who was wearing a bright new shade of eye shadow.
Lafayette was a tall and good looking black man. And Gay. Very, very gay. And the best cook in Bon temps. He had an army of spices and mixes that he'd add to every salad, burger, and plate that he made. People even asked for 'Burgers Lafayette' by name when ordering. Of course, he was also hard as nails and wasn't beyond knocking a grown man to the floor if provoked.
"I've got your Pies." Rose said, just as Arlene was walking up to place in a order.
"Hey, Rosie-girl.. Did you bring Hoyt's Birthday cake wit' you, too?" Lafayette asked as he stood where he was, manning his grill. Flipping over some burgers and steaks.
"Oh, I hope you did! 'Cause his Momma's been ranting about the party all day, n' about haven' to move it Merlotte's, the pop, the ice, the drinks, and I don't think I could take her rantin' about one more thing!" Arlene said, as she put another order on the spinning wheel and put both her hands on her hip.
Arlene was woman that was getting a little older but was still skinny. She had bright and lively red hair with a southern attitude to match. She also had two kids and two ex-husbands and could hold her own against any twenty-something girl that came her way.. At least if you asked her.
"Yes, I brought it, but only because it was in the van to begin with. Would have been a chore that one, doubling back or making a second trip…" Rose said in her British Sauvé, as she placed the pies down on the table, where Sam, John, or Lafayette would cut them later. A thought then dawned on her, as she turned around and faced the other two Employees.
"And wait a bloody minute… How is it that everybody knows that the party had been moved but me? First Sam, then Terry, now you two?…"
"Oh, Sam only knows because I told him.. and I only know because Ren'e told me.. And he only knew because Jason told him… and Jason only knows because he's best friends with Hoyt." Arlene tried to explain… Rose just blinked a few times.
"So… how did Lafayette know?.."
"Oh honey, I just know things…" Lafayette said, giving Rose a leering smile.. Rose had to stop herself from laughing. Lafayette was not only gay, but a total pervert.
"You just know things, huh?.." Rose jeered back.
"Oh, yeah. LOTS of things…"
"What are ya' all talking about?.." A soft voice said, as Sookie walked in the back door, carrying two of the cakes with her. Blonde hair in a ponytail, blue eyes shining, all made-up, and smiling just as pretty as a picture. It was obvious from her shorts and shirt she had just arrived to start work.
"About How Lafayette and Arlene knew that Hoyt's party was changed before me…" Rose said, giving a fake pout for effect.
"OOHH! you mean about it being held here, instead of at the house?…"
"WHAT! Not you, too!" She shrieked, As Lafayette and Arlene burst out laughing.
"Well, you see, Gran told me because Mrs. Fortenberry told…"
"Sooks, you can stop right there… I get the picture…."
Sookie, Rose, Gran, Layfayette and Sookie's brother Jason all sat on the porch of the Stackhouse' age-old country home after Hoyt's party. Apparently that house had been in the Stackhouse family for 100 some years.. And it still looked wonderful. It wasn't as grand or big as the Villa that Rose had bought but it had a charm and warmth that the Villa lacked.
The tablecloths and window drapes where homemade, and the paint was a bit faded but still a warm yellow. It made Rose think of a Country version of the Burrow, and her heart ached and she was fairly distracted.
"So.. Rose… How you liking Bon Temps?.." Jason said, trying to start a conversation with her for the fourth time. Rose broke out of her thoughts and gave him a warm smile.
"Oh, I'm liking it well enough… The eatery is doing good, and everyone here is top notch." Rose said with a smile to him.
"Yep.. This town is a little slice of Heaven. say. Have you gone to one of our here Football game yet?…"
"Oh… You mean American football?.." Jason's heartbreaking blue eyes lit up, as he nodded excitedly. Rose sensed danger up ahead… Sookie had warned her that her brother, Who was a exactly as blonde as she was a first rant Horn-dog. He charmed and seduced women left and right… and if the way he had been looking at her all night and the leading questions he was asking where going anywhere; Rose assumed that Jason intended her to be his next seduction.
"No, sorry. I haven't had the Pleasure." Rose said and Jason's ears picked up. She quietly put her glass of Sweet Tea down (Everyone else was drinking wine, and Jason had a Beer.) as she planned to excuse herself and flee Jason's company quickly.
"You really should.. You know, there is a game this Friday if you want.."
"JASON STACKHOUSE, You better not trin' any of your old tricks on that Girl!" Gran then busted out, as she gave a hard glare to him from the other side of the table. Lafayette and Sookie both started snickering.
"HEY! GRAN! I was just offering to take her to.."
"I know what you where offering, Boy, And I better not hear you offer it again! Rose is a good girl, so you keep your hands to yourself." Gran the turned to Rose, and placed her glass of sweet tea back in her hand. She then gave her a look that said 'Don't worry, I'll keep him in check.'
Jason blanched, and started sputtering. Rose just looked at Sookie as they gave one another knowing smiles…
It was good to have Gran on there side.
Rose laid down in bed as she sighed. So far, life as "Rose" had been going very well. Her business was working out and her life was pretty quiet and happy. But now, he was beginning to feel guilty.
She had opened a store, and people loved it.. She had made friends, and they really cared for her. She had made a new life, and she was enjoying it.
But all the while she was lying to them, and hiding things. Because all the while, she was still Harry Potter and Voldermort still needed to be defeated.
They both knew there was a little more then 8 months before the baby was born, but there was only a month and a half before the wizarding world realized Harry was gone… if not sooner. There was no way past it. 'Rose' may be safe and happy in America now, but in England, there was still a war raging. And at some point 'Harry' would have to return home.
Just the thought broke her heart, both ways. If she stayed here, in the USA, England would suffer. Harry would be abandoning his friends and the entire light side. When 'harry' left, and went back to England, 'Rose' would have to leave her child behind. And she would be abandoning her friends and the Eatery, that she had come to love.
Something would have to be sacrificed ether way. His old life, and her new. His responsibilities or her child. His destiny or her dream. He had no way of knowing how his friends would take his return… Or his sudden departure, ether.
She tried to clear her head. The decision to go back to England or stay would have to wait.. Literally, it would have to wait for another 8 months, maybe even more. Rose sighed and took a few deep breaths as she wrapped her fingers around her long, red hair. She then took her time in putting it in a simple, smooth pony tail. She had yet to learn how to style it, though she had been doing a good job of keeping it clean and orderly.
But right now, she had two more immediate concerns.
First, She needed to get to the nearest wizarding shopping place to make some potions and check on her estates and the news from England.
Second, She had to get to a muggle doctor soon and start pre-natal care. IMMEDITITLY. That was the main reason that she had allowed gripfitch to give her the potion that flipped her Y X Chromosomes and allowed her to be a Lily-look-alike instead of a James clone. Wizard pregnancies and pre-natal care were more extensive and much more high-risk then normal female pregnancies… The fact that it helped hide her from the wizarding world was just a added bonus…
When the goblins has asked if she wanted the potion, the answer was a no brainier. She wasn't going to risk her child for anything…
But, Before that… Rose would have to lose her virginity. She let out a even loader sigh at that. She couldn't go into the doctor's office claiming to be pregnant, when hymen was still there… She understood WHY the potion would of given her a hymen, but it still didn't make it any less annoying.
Plus, there was another reason. Rose looked over to the left side of her nightstand. A yellow-green potion, like spring grass, was sitting there. While Harry wasn't sure he wanted to use it.. He was glad that Gripfitch gave him the option.
It was a form blood adoption called the "Legacy" potion. If one was expecting a child under less then happy circumstances this potion was available to them. All they had to do was drink it after having…. Intercourse… with another person And the Child's paternity would change. It would go directly from the biological father, to the other man.
Rose though that it was cruel and underhanded way to handle things.. Until Gripfitch reminded him that not all rape victims where single. Some where Married, had children, or couldn't expect to have another child again. This way they could keep there family (Or at least there bloodline) intact, in there own way.
He had taken the potion with him, but he still didn't want to use it.
Yes, it still made him sick to think that he was carrying his uncle's child. Yes, he was terrified of what would happen if the word got out, or if the baby came out looking like the fat bastard. But what about the other father? The man would then become the biological father after he drank the potion?
Would she tell them? Would they want to be apart of the babies life? Would they be the one to raise them when Harry returned to England, or if he died?… She'd be lying to them, one way or the other. And Rose didn't think that she could handle anymore lies.
That didn't sit right with her.. It didn't sit right with her at all. But she still couldn't bring herself to toss it away.
Apart of her felt that using the potion was wrong.. But another part of her wanted her child to have a father. A man that would be there for the baby when she left. Be able to protect the child from anything and everything that came their way.
A man that would be that child's Father, in every sense of the word.
But where in the Hell was she going to find a man like that, anyway?