Author's Notes: A second entry for AsterLea's Dads and Daughters Challenge.
Andromeda had been planning for this night for a long time. This would be the night when she, Andromeda, would finally leave the Black family behind. She had thought, and considered, and decided that she wanted to leave, that she wanted to run away to marry Ted Tonks, and that she no longer cared that her love for him would come at the cost of her family.
She waited, as the plan dictated, for her sisters, with whom she shared a room, to go to sleep. This part was nerve-wracking, and she kept her eyes continually on the time, knowing that she only had until midnight to get out of the house and find Ted. At midnight, he would be leaving for Italy, with or without her.
But at last, the breathing from Bellatrix and Narcissa's beds went slow and steady, and Andromeda was able to grab up the bag she had packed, and sneak from the room, down, through the hallways, to the back door that would give her passage out onto the moors to meet Ted.
Andromeda was almost at the door when it slammed shut, and a figure stepped in front of it, blocking her way. She was quite sure her heart stopped from sheer shock and fear.
"Just where do you think you're going?" A wand tip was illuminated, and Andromeda saw her father.
She swallowed hard. "Father, I–"
"Andromeda?" He seemed surprised. "I assumed it would be Bellatrix trying to sneak out in the dead of night. What are you doing awake?" His eyes narrowed and his voice went from surprised to angry. "You shock me, Andromeda Black. I always thought you would be the daughter I wouldn't have to worry about sneaking out, but it seems I was wrong. Where are you going?"
Andromeda swallowed. "I…" What did she say? It was a question with no right answer. Her father loomed over her, and in the light of the single wand, he looked altogether terrifying. Andromeda moved backwards slightly as he advanced on her.
"Were you going out to meet that boy?" he asked, spitting the words. "That Mudblood? The one Narcissa says you're always talking to at school?"
Traitor! Andromeda thought, hating her sister for a moment. How did she know about Ted? How dare she tell Father?
"On the count of three," Cygnus snarled, "you are to tell me where you were going. If you do not, there will be Hell to pay. One…"
Andromeda thought about running. She could try to shove past him, run out onto the moors to meet Ted, and get out before her father had a chance to catch them. But she didn't trust her legs, weak with fear, to carry her that fast.
She could admit and apologize, or spit out some lie, and be spared her father's wrath. But then she would not be able to go to Ted, the opportunity would be lost, and she would be trapped here, with the Blacks forever.
She raised her wand, and before her father had time to react, had cried out "Stupefy!" The jet of red light caught him in the chest and he collapsed.
There was a silence, while Andromeda stared at Cygnus, lying there between her and her way out. There was a wave of horror as she realized what she had done – cursed her own flesh and blood – but it faded quickly. Remorse was a worthless emotion in this situation.
She leaned down, and whispered in his ear.
Then she stood, stepped over him, and was free.