A/N: OMG i'm so sorry for this long delay. I've been working on this chapter forever trying to perfet it but writer's block became my worst enemy. Finally, I found the right inspiration to finish it. Also, I've been busy moving into my dorm at school and getting ready for classes and the whole nine yards, you know. Anyway I hope you guys enjoy this chapter, it was very interesting to write. Finally you guys get to know more about Chris and her past and see some of whats going through her head. Have fun and remember r/r! : )italics--dream
Chapter 13: Beauty's Fairy Tale
I searched the room around me, my bedroom in London, and found that everything was shattered on the floor. There was no distinction between one object or another; it was all just bits and pieces of horrid memories. I sat in the only bare spot in the middle of it all and rocked back and forth trying desperately to find something, anything to block out the noises around me. I could hear screaming, cussing, just destruction coming from everywhere. I wanted it to stop, I needed it to stop. My eyes finally landed on the only fully intact item in the room, a small black candle with a tiny flickering flame that illuminated a small corner of the room. The flame became smaller and smaller until finally, the shadows consumed everything, including me. As the room disappeared, the noise seemed to dissipate as well until only one scream could be heard, my mother’s.
“CHRISTINE, get your lazy ass up and CLEAN UP THIS MESS!” She barked
I did nothing.
“CHRISTINE, you dumb bitch, gets up and DO SOMETHING!” She screeched.
I said nothing.
“CHRISTINE, stop being a selfish brat and GET IT TOGETHER!” She roared.
I was nothing.
As soon as the last word left her lips I could feel myself falling through the dark abyss that crowded my space. Just as quickly as it started it stopped and hit the ground, hard, landing face down in a heap of brokenness with all my shattered junk still all over the place. Suddenly, I felt a swift kick to my stomach that flipped me over to my back and left me looking up into the cruel eyes of my attacker…my mother.
“Why are you just laying there?” She said nastily with another kick, “I told you to do something,” another kick, “so, DO IT!” and another, and another. With each new addition to her version of a lecture I received another strike to my stomach, side, and back. No matter how many times she kick or how much it hurt, I didn’t utter a single response, or shed a tea, only grunted an groaned every now and then. I’d learned years ago to lock it all up, to numb all my senses so as to not fuel her drunken anger. However, this was the first time she crossed the line when it came to insults, and I was quick to retaliate.
“You good for nothing SLUT!” she screamed
“What?” I hissed through tight lips as I lifted my eyes to hers for the first time. Her usually cold hazel eyes no longer existed, now shining mercilessly in a bright emerald green. “No.” I whispered, shaking my head vigorously.
She quickly fisted my hair in one hand and yanked me up to her level, so that I stared straight into my lover’s eyes fitted onto my nightmare’s face, “What did you just say?” she questioned vehemently.
I stared at her…him…whatever, with my bruises aching all over my body, my tears burning my eyes, and my numbness losing its control over me. Finally, I scream out my response, “I SAID NO!” I pushed her away and soon found myself falling again, only this time my landing was a tad softer than before.
“CHRIS, CHRIS, wake up!” Hermione was shaking me vigorously.
“Wh-what? What’s going on?” I groaned as I rolled over in my bed, back in my dorm room, lying drastically tangled in my sheets. After detangling my limbs from there confines, I sat up and looked her in the eye.
“You were moaning in your sleep, it sounded like you were in pain.” She fretted, looking considerably concerned.
I sat there breathing heavily for a moment before allowing myself to answer, “I’m fine, it was just a nightmare.”
“tears.” She pointed out softly, her voice barely reaching my ears.
“what?” I repeated, looking confused and lost, my brain not really catching anything due to the late hour.
“you’re crying.” she finished as she reached for the tissues on my nightstand. I quickly grabbed them and began to wipe away the stains of my horrors.
“Thanks.” I said softly, “I guess it was worse than I thought. But forget about it, what time is it, I feel like I barely slept at all.”
She looked even more confused than I did just a mere second ago, before finally picking up my watch that also sat on my nightstand. “It’s almost 4:30 in the morning, but—”
“Wow, barely a half-an-hour,” I chuckled, wrapping my blanket back over my shoulders, “I’m going back to sleep, I’ll see you in—”
“Chris,” she interjected, stopping my movement by placing a hand on my shoulder, “you’ve been asleep for two days,” this time I looked shocked, “you missed classes yesterday and everything, Pavarti and I, told the teachers you were sick and wouldn’t get out of bed, we also got all your course work,” She indicated the small pile of books that rested on top of my trunk. "and a pepper up potion from Madam Pomfrey, with explicit instructions that you take it the second you get up." It was nowhere to be found, "We poured it out." she added when she saw my onfusion. I laid there for a moment letting it all sink in before swiping a hand over my eyes and sitting back up.
“Well then, I guess I should get started on that work.” I said happily as I swung my legs over the edge and grabbed my books.
“Now?” she asked incredulously.
“Yeah, why not? Besides, maybe it will put some bags under my eyes and I can pull of that, ‘I was sick’ look.” I joked brightly.
“Well it seems someone’s got their emotions back.” She countered with a small smirk followed by yawn and stretch. “Is that all you’re ready to get back?” she asked as she moved back to her own bed.
“How about you just worry about getting back to bed.” I retorted, while walking out the door, “Don’t worry so much Mione, I’ll talk to him eventually.” As I walked down the stairs I couldn’t shake the uneasy feeling caused by my nightmare. I may have promised my best friend I’d talk to him, but I couldn’t even think about being in the same room as him after something like that. My dark depressing mood may have I disappeared, but that didn’t mean that the emotions attached to it didn’t still exist. Now, I just felt their full effects rather than the minuscule control they had while within my locked up heart. On the bright side, the connection to my mother simply got added into everything else. Juuuuust perfect!
~3 days later~
Dance…dance, my movements controlled my mind. Point 1, turn 2, drop down, up 5,6,7,8. “Wait, stop.” The music that was blaring through the stereos conjured by the Room of Requirement, quickly silenced themselves as I turned to look at my girls. We were practicing in front of a few floor-to-ceiling mirrors so that we all could see how everything looked, and I could easily tell that they were both ready to pass out, or in Pavarti’s case, already had. She was laying on the ground with one arm covering her eyes while the other laid on her stomach and short huffy breathes escaped her lungs. All the while Hermione stood pacing in small circles with her hands atop her head, panting just as badly as Pavarti. Even though I, myself, wasn’t breathing too well, I was still nowhere near their levels of exhaustion. “Are you two OK?” I asked.
“Yes”, “No” they both responded at the same time. Pavarti finally sat up, leaning back on her hands and looked dead at me, her eyes void of all energy, “Chris you’re trying to kill us.” She declared before flopping back onto the floor.
“I am not,” I retorted indignantly, “I’m just trying to perfect everything, and sorry it’s just the dancer in me.”
“Chris don’t worry about it, we’re fine.” Hermione stated, her breathing back to normal.
“Speak for yourself Mione.” Pavarti snorted.
“Know what you guys go ahead back to the tower and get some rest, I’ll see you later.” I conceded, you know Pavarti decided to return the favor and kill me for trying to “kill them”
“What about you?” Hermione asked with concern.
I shrugged, “I’m gonna stay here and work on it some more.”
They both sighed, “Chris you spend every free second you have here –” Pavarti began as she stood, before Hermione picked up the rest of her sentence.
“—and if you’re not here, you’re in the library studying alone, and if you’re not there, you’re locked up in our dorm—”
“STOP AVOIDING HIM!” Pavarti shouted in the end.
“I’m not avoiding anybody.” I scoffed, I’m just trying to get this ready for tryouts, you know ours is in two days, and after that you two leave for the holidays, so we won’t have time to practice before the real thing on New Year's, if we make it.”
“Bullocks—” Mione started up again, but Pavarti quickly cut in.
“Don’t even bother Mione, she won’t listen anyway.” She said dejectedly. There was a moment of tense silence after that, where they both stared at me and I stared right back determinedly until both finally rolled their eyes at my stubbornness and left with quick good-byes. I stood in my spot for a moment longer, pondering their arguments, before finally turning back to the mirrors, restarting the music, and dancing like my life depended on it.
5…6…5,6,7,8, drop 1,up 2, hit3, hit 4, roll, 5,6,7,8, step 1,2, turn out, in, arms up 5,twist around 6,7,8… “What are you doing here?” I stopped practicing mid turn to find that I wasn’t alone and the last person I wanted to see had joined me in my hideaway. He didn’t answer, “What are you doing here?” I repeated.
“Watching.” He said simply.
“Sorry Potter, closed practice, get out!” I said dryly as I turned back around to continue dancing. He didn’t budge.
“Oh so we’re on a last name basis now?” he retorted in the same tone. I snapped back around to face him, my eyes glowering in his general direction, but not once connecting with his.
“Didn’t I just tell you to leave?” I snarled forcefully as I placed my hands on my hips.
“Not until you talk to me!” he said forcefully
“If I had wanted to talk to you, I wouldn’t have told you to leave.” I yelled back furiously, my irritation reaching new heights as my face stained red with anger and I began to huff and puff like I was the big bad wolf.
“Well then I guess we have a problem then.” He sighed, not sounding one bit angry or forceful but disappointed. I still couldn’t look him in the eye so I couldn’t be certain.
“No you have a problem because if you’re not gonna go then I will.” I insisted as I grabbed my things and headed to the door. I tried so hard not to go anywhere near him as but he refused to let me go without a fight and quickly grabbed my arm just before I reached the door and forced me to face him. I quickly pushed him away so that he stumbled back a few steps and we were now standing a safe distance away from each other.
“Don’t touch me!” I shrieked, finally bringing my eyes up to his to see his own irritation shining as well but not even holding a candle to the pain and regret.
“WHY?” he shouted, “Why can’t I touch you, why can’t I talk to you?” I couldn’t respond, I’d been trying to come up with that answer myself for almost a week, “You don’t even know. You’re so busy avoiding me that you don’t even know why—”
“I have not been avoiding you!” I yelled indignantly, “Besides, why the fuck do you care, the last time you talked to me, I was nothing more than the school slut!”
A frustrated sigh escaped his lungs, “Chris I swear that just slipped out, I didn’t mean it, and I’m sorry it ever happened, but why wouldn’t I care about you, I still love you.”
“Ha,” I laughed bitterly, “it certainly didn’t seem that way last night when I came down to the common room and saw you and Ginny laying very comfortably on the couch.” He looked about as shocked as a deer caught in headlights. Finally, he had nothing to say, “Yeah, exactly, good-bye Potter.” I quickly stormed out the door before he could try to get me to talk to him again. I was halfway down the hall when he finally realized I was gone.
“Wait Chris, it wasn’t... let me expl…SHIT!” he stammered loudly for a moment before realizing I was long gone. The last sound I heard was the echo of the door being dejectedly slammed shut.
“Daddy?”I called repeatedly as I stood in a dim, barely lit room. Eventually my surroundings peaked my interest while I relentlessly cried out for my father. Through the small amount of light I could just barely make out all the elaborate decorations on the wall and the many toys that littered the ground. The walls were painted light blue, with small clouds floating near the ceiling, a bright yellow sun shining in one corner, and different shades of green grass and colorful flowers growing up from the floor. The light blue eventually faded into a dark, midnight blue that covered the ceiling, where a dazzling crescent moon hung closest to me and vivid stars sprinkled over the rest of the ceiling. I remembered this room. It was mine when I was just a little girl. I hadn’t seen it since I was almost four, since around the time my dad left. After that my mother got rid all the colors and decoration, by painting it all a plain, haunting white. I missed this.
Suddenly my calls were answered. A tall man, with oceanic eyes that mirrrored my own came dashing into the room. I immediately reached out to him with tiny fist and opened my mouth to show off my toothless grin. “Daddy!” I squealed.
“What’s wrong princess?” he cooed as he plucked me out of my crib and placed me on his shoulder.
“Daddy.” I replied happily still grinning like mad. He couldn’t help but laugh.
“Still stuck on that one word, eh princess?” he chuckled as he began to cradle me in his arms, “That’s ok, it’s a good word to be stuck on.” Soon I began to feel myself drift off back to sleep. My eyes started to droop, before quickly popping back open, only to began to flutter shut once more. After sleep claimed me once more he gently placed me in my crib and place a soft kiss upon my temple. “Sweet dreams princess.” He stood up and turned on the musical mobile that hung above my crib, before leaving me to dream my sweet dreams.
All the while, a present day me watched unnotices from a dark corner, allowing the memorie to overwhelm me, while a single tear fell down my cheek.
The scene before me changed. We were sitting in the living room, and by we I mean, my father, my mother, and I, all acting like an actual family. I was barely two years old. And from the looks of things my dad was trying to get me to walk to him from the other side of the room. I remembered this.
“Come on Princess, come to daddy.” He called to me as I stood reaching up to the arm of the couch for support. I took a small step and then another, I let go of the couch, and I fell on my bum. “Aww, come on try again princess.” He urged happily.
“Daniel, I don’t know why you’re pushing her so much, you know she only does things when she wants to,” My mother cautioned from her seat on the couch, she looked like she was holding something, “isn’t that right Chrissy?” she added playfully. Wait, did she just call me Chrissy? I’ve only ever heard her address me as Christine, or call me out my name. What happened, between then and now?
“I know, but I can’t help but try. After all she does get her stubborness from me.” He chuckled in return. He soon stood up from his crouched position across the room and came over and placed me back on my feet, before returning to his original spot. This time I held onto nothing. I stood there for a moment wobbling back and forth, trying to get my balance before finally I took a step. Then I took another, and another, and another, until I finally reached the middle of the floor and fell, deciding to crawl the rest of the way to my father. He scooped me up in his arms as he stood and joined my mother on the couch, laughing the entire way.
“Well I guess she just made her point, she’s really trying, but today is not the day.” He laughed as he planted a kiss on my forehead and gently tickled small stomach.
“That’s ok, besides it won’t be long before this one’s walking.” My mother comforted, nodding to whatever it was she was cradling in her arms.
Wait, what one? Did she just say shat I think she said.
Her back was to me as I stood, still unnoticed, in the entrance to the kitchen watching the scene unfold. Their conversation became a dull drone to my ear as I left my hiding spot. As I approached, little Christine looked up from where she sat in her father’s arms, her crystal blue eyes staring deep into mine, before she glanced down at what was in her mother’s arms and smiled. I was curious; the mystery was killing me. As each step brought me closer, dred began to eat away at my insides and my heart began to pound through my chest. Finally I reached the side of the couch, and still no one but little Christine looked up. She looked blankly on at my shocked expression. Was my mother holding another baby girl?
Once again, the scene dissolved into another, only this time the atmosphere was is Christmas time, the decorations were everywhere, but the mood was anything but merry or joyful. I remembered this moment best, yet still not at all. The last night I ever saw my father.
They were arguing constantly, my parents. I was almost four years old, I didn’t know what the hell was going on, just that they wouldn’t stop fighting and it upset me. I stood behind my mother bawling my eyes out as she stood her ground. But then, a different scene flashed before my eyes. On moment I saw my father yank me away from my mother before she pulled me back, and the next both were pushing me on to the other as though neither wanted me. For a second, my father was holding the other little girl form the second scene and then he wasn’t. I was so confused. I sat on the steps watching the flashes of the different incidents for barely a second longer before I shut my eyes, shaking my head vigorously to make it all stop and covering my ears to block the sounds. I heard the distinct sounds of a child’s cry mixing in that of baby, whose noise went in and out constantly. The unmistakable clamor of my parents row never let up but was still just a mix of words with only a few bits and pieces jumping out at me.
“TOGETHER” she yelled only for another flash to appear and change it all, “APART” became her word.
“CHRISTINE” he screamed before the scene changed again, “CASSANDRA” he roared. Who? I’m so confused.
Suddenly,…it all stopped, and the last things I heard was the deafening sound of a slamming door and the echo of his retreating footsteps and the baby’s sobs. I finally opened my eyes to see I was no longer in my house, but instead in just a blank, white space. I looked around to see nothing left to remind me of my past, that is, until my eyes landed on the miniature version of myself. She stood clad in a pair of pale pink and white pajamas, which were covered in tiny hearts, hold the hand of an even smaller, younger copy of myself. The only difference between the two were the eyes, one shared my crystal clear eyes of my father, while the other looked through the hazel ones of my mother.
Little Christine opened her mouth and let out a ghostly whisper, “Remember. Help us.”
I sat bolt upright in my bed, sweat dripping off my brow, tears swirling in my eyes, and breath quickly passing through my lungs. These haunting dreams, nightmares rather, had plagued my mind all week, causing me to barely sleep more than three or four hours a night. I was frustrated, I was pissed, I hated all of it, and I couldn’t help but think, “Why now?”
“OK Chris, we’re up next. Are you…” Hermione gushed as she came bouncing up to me as we stood outside the Great Hall waiting for our turn, somehow we’d managed to be the last ones. Pavarti barely paid attention to us, as she leaned against the wall a few feet from where I had stood planted in front of the door for the last hour or so, while she nervously bit her nails. Hermione on the other had was fully tuned into my every move and facial expression and had immediately switched to her worried demeanor that had become the norm for the past week. “Hey, sweetie,” she called to get my attention, “are you ok?”
“Yeah I’m fine.”
“Liar,” she read me like a book, “what’s wrong?”
“I don’t even know why you’re asking, I’m sure you’ve heard me tossing and turning every night, and you were there when I woke up after my two day long nap.” I countered with a small smirk. She rolled her eyes.
“Yeah I know. Bad dreams?” she asked.
“Confusing ones, all about things that happened when I was little or when I was with my mum, but none of it make sense and…it just…confuses the hell out of me. It all annoys me, and I’m angry all the time and this on top of all the bull shit with Harry, it just…urgh.” I confessed.
“Well I know one thing that can help.” She offered hesitantly. I looked at her, urging her to continue, “Talk to him.” I raised a skeptical eyebrow as I stared on, not saying anything. “What? I know you want to.”
I snorted, “Oh yeah, how?”
“Because you just said his name instead of his surname, and you did it without gagging.” She retorted cheekily. I laughed softly for a second before she continued, “Just think about it.”
“I will. “ I conceded. I looked over at her out of the corner of my eye before surprisingly throwing my arms around her in a big hug. “Aww, what am I gonna do without you for a week?” I whimpered.
“I don’t know, die from boredom I guess.” She jeered as she hugged me back.
“I want a hug too!” Pavarti whined as she joined us.
“Ugh you guys suck, you’re leaving me here all alone on Christmas.” I moaned jokingly.
“It’s we’ll be back sooner than you think, ok?” Pavarti said impishly as Hermione poked out her bottom lip and gave the saddest puppy dog look. We all burst out laughing. Shortly after the door burst open and Professor McGonagall ushered us inside. We squeezed each others hands for luck. We all parted ways to go to our different spots on-stage, Hermione to my left and Pavarti to my right. I stood frozen at the center aisle of the hall as a new idea occurred.
“Chris?” They both called, wondering why I was still standing there.
“Go on, I just thought of a really cool idea.” I smirked at both of them and they immediately knew what was going through my head, as they’d seen me do it a million times before. Once both were set, I readied myself by shaking out the few nerves within my stomach. I could hear the few seconds of silence that came before our music. “Hear it goes.” I whispered to myself, and I took off running full speed to the stage.