“Al, what are you and Scorpius up to?” I hissed as I sat down next to him. Dom plopped down on my other side, across from Apollo, who had swiftly taken the seat next to James, with Jason claiming the other side. Everyone else had also taken a mad scramble for the remaining decent seats, which left a sour-faced Sarah wedged next to Uncle Percy and an extremely desolate-looking Ron Weasley.
I tried to cover up my snicker as a hacking cough – boy were they going to be in for a horrible dinner.
“Don’t worry about it,” Al muttered back.
“No, I’m actually worried about my general well-being, along with the well-being of those around –”
“It’s not happening today. Happy?” Al said.
I perked up. “Extremely.”
“I – Oi!” Al said furiously, turning to Rose and Scorpius. “Are you two honestly playing footsie under the table?”
Rose blushed, averting her gaze while Scorpius snickered like the ever-so-mature young gentleman that he seems to constantly embody (heavy sarcasm). “Of course not,” She mumbled.
“Well, something just grazed my leg,” Al continued, his lip curling when he mentioned the disgraceful graze.
“Perhaps it was your imagination,” Rose suggested innocently.
“The hell it was,” He spat.
“Oh get over it mate, it’s not like you and Noah don’t play footsie under the table,” Scorpius rolled his eyes.
“Yeah Al, it’s not like you totally didn’t attack Noah with your foot the other day,” Noah said slyly from across the table.
Al pouted petulantly. “You were tickling the bottom of my foot, and you know that makes me spaz like crazy.”
We burst out laughing. “Al,” I gasped. “You should not have told that to us.”
His gaze suddenly turned wary. “Well, it’s not like you guys are going to – GAHH!”
There was another round of raucous laughter as Al twitched wildly and slammed his foot firmly onto the floor. He was breathing heavily, his face flushed. “Whoever did that is going to die,” He promised in a low voice.
And, thankfully, Al’s various death threats, along with Percy Weasley’s loud lecture on parchment textures (“Well, some parchments are just too rough! It starts to chafe against the hand, and before you know it, you’ve developed a rather nasty rash on your hand that is sure to be potentially damaging.” “Oh yeah, Perce,” Ron Weasley had said loudly. “Those parchment rashes are going to completely change people’s lives, they are.” He had received a very scathing glare in return to his observations.) were the most interesting things that dinner had to offer.
And I, quite frankly, was relieved.
Because there was going to be a hell of a lot of craziness tonight.
Prepare to meet your doom, Sarah-The-Evil-Git-Cow. Prepare to meet your doom.
Mweh heh heh heh.
Yes, I just chuckled evilly. And it was fun. So there.
“That was great, Nana,” Fred said warmly, sitting back and patting his stomach with a satisfied expression on his face after he was finished inhaling his food.
“I’m glad you liked it, dear,” Nana Weasley smiled, flicking her wand at the dishes so that they rose gracefully in the air and flew in a collective bunch towards the kitchen. “What are you planning to do now?”
“Oh, we’ll probably just hang out,” Fred said innocently. Around the table, there was a collective sound of muffled snickers, and I rolled my eyes.
My friends have never been too great on subtly.
“I was thinking we could play a game of Quid –” My voice cut off with a sharp gasp as blackness stabbed through my eyesight. Apollo was at my side in two seconds, pulling me out of my seat as I sagged slightly, fighting against the vision for a little while until I got to a place where no one else could see my opaque eyes.
I’m sure that would freak them out.
“What’s wrong, is she okay?” Mr. Potter asked quickly, standing up as well.
“No, she’s fine, don’t worry,” Apollo said, swinging me up into his arms as I squeezed my eyes shut. “She just has a bit of a fainting prob –”
The night was dark, with only the halo of moonlight to illuminate the black. The streets of London, however, were still bustling with life, lights reflecting on the black roads, which were slick with wet rain. A lone figure, wrapped in a dark coat, was hurrying down the sidewalk, keeping his eyes away from the people around him. No one bothered to give him a second glance, even when he sighed loudly and looked at the ring on his left hand as though it was slowly killing him.
Suddenly, he raised his face and my heart lurched – it was James. The same James from my first vision, except he was…different. The face looked the same, with the same unruly black hair and golden eyes, except it was gaunt, and his eyes were a dull, tarnished gold, as if he would never see happiness again. The deep shadows under his eyes told me that he was tired…and miserable.
I’m seeing James, but why is he so sad? Is this is his future? This bleak, desolate –
Suddenly, there was a shrill noise, and a muggle cell phone rang in James’ pocket. He picked it up, looking weary.
“Hi Sarah,” He said, his voice sounding hollow.
Ice spread through me. He marries Sarah.
There was a faint sound of a woman’s whiny voice on the other end, and James sighed again.
“No – I’m coming home right now. Okay. I’ll see you soon. Yeah. Bye.” He closed his eyes briefly as he pushed the phone into his pocket, and raised his face to the rain.
“Artemis.” The name was so faint that I barely heard it.
My heart stabbed painfully in my chest.
Shaking his head and sighing deeply, he pressed his fingers to the bridge of his nose, and glanced briefly at the road before crossing it.
That’s when I saw it – the blaring truck barreling towards him at Merlin-knows-how-many-kilometers-per-hour, honking desperately. I wanted to scream, to yell, to shout some sort of warning to him, but I was frozen, merely a spectator.
And I watched as the truck slammed right into him and he flew into the air, landing in a tangled mass of limbs, a steady stream of blood trickling down his lifeless face.
I shot up with a scream, the shuddering sobs already wracking through my whole body.
I kill James. I’m a murderer.
“Oh my god,” I sobbed, taking a deep, shuddering breath and pressing my hands to my face. “Oh my god. No – no, no, no, no, no.”
“Artemis?” Soft hands were at my hair and touching my shoulder and I let out a shriek, cringing away from them.
Please don’t let it be real. Please. James’ blood-spattered face flashed through my mind again, and I let out another wild sob.
“Tell me what happened, Artemis.” I blinked through the haze and saw Apollo’s concerned face in front of me, holding my cheeks between his hands. “Artemis, shh. Tell me what you saw.”
I shook my head, fighting against his grip on my face and dropping my head to my knees. Another flash of thought, and I saw James’ body, mangled and broken. My stomach lurched, and I flew out of the room and into the bathroom, vomiting into the toilet.
All my fault. All my fault.
What do I do? What should I do?
“Shh, shh,” Apollo soothed, his fingers pulling my hair away from my face and rubbing circles into my back. I pulled myself to the sink and rinsed out my mouth, raising my face to look at my truly frightening reflection. My eyes were flashing silver, wild with grief and fear, tinged red. My face was pale and gaunt, except for two patches of bright red, which covered my cheeks, and my hair – oh my god, my hair was sticking up in at least fifty different directions.
Something about my crazy state seemed to clear my mind, and I looked past my shoulder at the reflections of Apollo, Dom and Al, all three looking worried, and, in Al’s case, shocked.
“Artemis? Please tell me what happened,” Apollo said gently, and my knees buckled again as I thought about it. Al caught me before I crashed into the countertop.
“I need to sit,” I said weakly, and, nodding, he helped me back into my room.
“What did you see?” Al asked in a low voice, and I closed my eyes at the sight of his face, which looked so much like –
“James.” The name slipped past my teeth in a low whimper. I took a deep, shuddering breath and tried again. “James… I – I saw James.”
He took a sharp breath at the sight of my desolate face, his green eyes flooding with raw fear. “What about James?” He asked, his voice wavering slightly.
My breath hitched. “I kill him,” I bawled, half-wild with self-disgust. Al’s face drained in color and he dropped his hand from my shoulder as though I was contagious with some sort of rampant disease.
“It’s all my fault,” I moaned, curling into myself. “I kill him, and if I – I –”
“Artemis,” Apollo said firmly. “How do you kill James?”
“It was a truck,” I whispered. “It crashed into him while he was going home to Sarah, and –”
“You didn’t kill him,” Dom sounded a little more relieved than before. “A truck killed him, Artemis –”
“BUT IT’S STILL MY FAULT!” I screamed, tears streaming down my burning face. “If I hadn’t done all of this stupid stuff and messed with everything then James would be happy and he wouldn’t have died!”
There was a short silence while I continued to cry. Al’s hand returned to my hair again, but I just wanted to be left alone – I’m a murderer, why are these people even –
“Artemis,” Dom’s voice was low and harsh, and I sniffled and looked up at her face. It looked carved out of ice. “What are you doing?” The words whipped through the air and my brow furrowed in confusion.
“What do you –?”
“What are you going to do about it, Artemis? You better as hell not sit there and cry about it – you better get up off that arse of yours and do something,” Dom snarled.
“What can I do?” I asked.
Dom’s eyes flared. “You have two options. You can let it happen, or you can fix it. You choose.”
I took a deep breath and looked at everyone’s faces. Dom looked stern and harsh, Apollo looked worried, but Al was the worst…he looked pale and scared and completely vulnerable, his green eyes gazing up at me with the sort of fear a small child has in front of their parents, or maybe an older sibling.
That did it.
I’m a Seer for a reason, aren’t I? I changed the future once – who’s to say that I can’t do it again?
No one decides that except for me.
My jaw locked. “I’m going to fix it.”
My Conscience can just do me a favor and stuff it, because I am going through with all of this, and I will make sure it happens just the way we planned.
Dom’s mouth curled into a victorious smile, and both Apollo and Al looked distinctly relieved.
Nothing can stop me now.
“Are you okay?”
Those were the first words that rang around the table as I made my way back downstairs, my brain feeling clearer than it had in a long time. I smiled and nodded, dropping back down to my seat. I could feel a pair of burning hazel eyes on me, and I tentatively raised my head, unadulterated relief spreading through me at the sight of James’ very alive face, creased with concern.
“I’m fine,” I said softly, looking right at him. He nodded once and looked down, his jaw locking slightly. I took a deep, shuddering breath and continued to watch him, letting the feeling of love spread through me – this time, I wasn’t afraid of it, because this time, I knew what it meant. Love meant life. James’ life and mine – because I knew that if James died, I would, too.
I could tell that each one of my friends were watching me carefully, but I kept my eyes on James, just glad that he was alive and okay.
I’m going to keep him that way. Whatever it takes – I’ll make sure things get right again. I don’t care about anything else at this point. Sarah can go and tell the whole world that I’m a Seer. She can get it up on the front page of the Daily freaking Prophet if she so pleases, but I no longer give a damn. I’m getting James back.
I looked away from James to meet her eyes, narrowing mine slightly. She was glaring daggers at me, but I kept my gaze level, letting it burn into hers with a single warning: You’d better watch it, bitch.
I think she understood, too, because she looked scared.
“Are you going to tell us what happened, or what?” Ella said later on that night, as we were having another Secret Spy Meeting in my room. The slight murmur of noise fell silent, all eyes on me.
I sighed. Well, I guess it’s now or never.
“I’m a Seer,” I said heavily.
Well, this isn’t too bad.
“WHAT?!” Rose suddenly shrieked, making me sigh again.
“Look, can we please just not make such a big deal out of it?” I asked tiredly. “I’m getting pretty tired of all these hysterical reactions, so let’s pick up and move on, yeah?”
Rose was glaring slightly at me, but shut up nevertheless. “You could have told me,” She muttered mutinously.
“But it makes sense,” Scorpius pointed out thoughtfully. “I mean – how else could she have known where Alex was that night? I’ve been wondering about it since then, and now… it makes sense. It’s pretty cool.” He grinned at me.
“You still could have told me.”
“What matters,” I cut over the noise, “Is that I saw a vision last summer, that told me something I didn’t like, at all. At the time, anyway. Me and James were supposed to end up together, and I pretty much freaked out and tried changing the future. It worked, but the alternate solution is that James ends up with the hoebag, which definitely does not float my boat since I’m now in love with him. And, well…if James ends up with the hoebag, he dies. And that definitely –”
“Can’t happen,” Alex finished faintly. “James can’t die – he just can’t.”
I put a hand on her shoulder. “And we’re going to make sure it doesn’t happen. We are making sure it doesn’t happen. Thanks guys – all of you – for helping me out.”
Lily marched up to me, her face hard. “You better make sure my brother doesn’t die.”
I smiled at her glaring face. “Trust me, Baby Potter, I’m going to do all I can.”
“Don’t call me that!” Lily cried, swatting me on the shoulder.
And that was when I completely broke down and launched myself into her frozen arms, bawling like the pathetic loser that I am.
I have issues.
It was approximately midnight when we heard the first scream.
Ironically enough, it was like music to my ears. I looked over to Dom, who was smirking happily, then Ella, who nodded and climbed out of bed. We crept to the door and quickly made our way to the floor below us, opening the door and looking into…complete chaos.
Sarah was currently having a fit of some sort on the remains of her bed, screaming and flailing around as various bugs crawled all over her. Molly, Lucy and Roxanne were huddled on the other side of the room, shaking with hysterical laughter.
“What happened?” I asked incredulously, watching with unhidden glee as she continued to shriek. There was an almighty groaning sound, and the bed collapsed under her again. She went sprawling on the ground.
“What’s going on?” Jason asked from behind me, and I turned around, my lips tight against my laughter, to see that all of the boys, along with Rose and the girls, had joined us as well.
“No idea,” I said, not able to fully contain a snicker. “I think Roxy had her revenge on Sarah, though.”
“What?” James pushed through to the front of the little crowd grouped into the doorway and looked at the extremely pitiful state of Sarah, who was still screaming.
“Bugs!” She shrieked. “GET THEM OFF!”
Oh, this is absolutely priceless. Fred snapped a picture from next to me, and I couldn’t help it – a laugh burst out from my mouth, and I quickly clamped my teeth over my bottom lip to prevent another one.
“Oh my god,” James said faintly, staring at Sarah on the ground as she screamed again, her hair flinging all over the place as she waved her limbs around frantically. Alex had pulled out a muggle video camera from Merlin-knows-where and was recording this with a look of pure delight on her face.
“Who did this?” James demanded.
“We did!” Roxy said gleefully, coming up behind him. “And it was so worth it.”
“Your girlfriend is a spineless hag,” Lucy added.
“And a really bad roommate,” Molly finished.
Dom let out a loud and extremely unattractive snort. James turned to the rest of us and saw that we were all currently between varying degrees of ill-disguised amusement (Me, Alex, Apollo, Fred and Noah) and outright hysterics (Ella, Dom, Jason, Al, Scorpius, Rose and Lily).
“Did you guys help?” He asked, his eyes narrowed.
“No, but I sure as hell wish that I did,” Al choked out, doubling over in laughter. I bit my lip harder but couldn’t entirely hold back another giggle.
“You know, you could have just told me that you didn’t like my girlfriend instead of doing all this,” James said in a weary voice, gesturing to the pandemonium that was currently going on behind him (Sarah was now screaming a mixture of household spells and very foul words as she tried to get rid of the bugs).
“We tried, but she gave us a really scary look,” Molly said, pouting slightly. James sighed and picked her up, ruffling her red curls in an affectionate manner.
“Your dad is going to go ballistic if he finds out that both of his daughters have taken after his brothers rather than him,” James said, grinning slightly when Molly beamed in pride and threw her hands around his neck.
“You’re not going to yell at us?” Lucy asked incredulously.
James glanced back at Sarah, who was spitting bugs out of her mouth, looking murderous. “Why would I yell at you guys for something I never saw?” He asked innocently, putting Molly down and then proceeding to hightail it out of there.
Seeing that he was gone, I finally burst out into hysterical laughter, exchanging high-fives with my three new favorite mini-Weasleys.
Merlin, this is awesome.
“Oh my god! Oh – AAAAAAAAACK!”
i cringe reading this chapter. hopefully you didn't ;)
review and lemme know?! SHMANKS<3
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