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Valour by blackballet

Format: Novel
Chapters: 45
Word Count: 100,067

Rating: Mature
Warnings: Contains profanity, Strong violence, Scenes of a sexual nature, Substance abuse, Sensitive topic/issue/theme

Genres: Drama, Horror/Dark, Romance
Characters: Dumbledore, McGonagall, Lupin, James, Lily, Sirius, Pettigrew, Voldemort, OC
Pairings: James/Lily, Remus/OC, Sirius/OC, Other Pairing

First Published: 08/07/2013
Last Chapter: 06/05/2016
Last Updated: 01/12/2017

banner by me 

Life goes on

But so does death


          Innocence and arrogance combine in a story about eight newly-graduated revolutionaries. 

Chapter 43: The Forward in the Movement

(June 17th, 1978)


“What is the meaning of this, Marlene?”

Marlene looked up from the scrapbook of her Hogwarts memories, a gift from Lily given to her on the day of their graduation. She folded the book with a thump, and steeled her eyes against the mirror that was her mother.

“You are declining the acceptance?” she asked, still calmly but with a timbre that made Marlene’s spine shiver.

“Yes, mother.” Marlene sat up straighter and uncrossed her legs, hanging them over the edge of her bed.

“Do you even know how rare this is?” she hissed, stepping inside Marlene’s room and closing the door gently behind her.

“Yes, I do. Only one out of every hundred wizards continues their education past secondary school.” Marlene stood from her bed and crossed her arms over her chest. “Let it go to someone who wants it.”

“You are going, Marlene. That is final.”

Marlene wondered how her mother could be so mad but look so content.

“You can owl Alenclass. They will assure you I am not.” Marlene stared her mother down forcefully, but she feared a few stray tears would betray her. She never wanted to have this fight.

“And just what are you going to do without Alenclass? Go be an Auror?” she asked mockingly, mirroring her daughter’s frame again and crossing her arms.

“Maybe. Maybe not. I don’t know what I’m going to do, but I sure as hell am not going to school to learn how to belittle others because my parents are inbred and theirs aren’t.” Marlene felt the rain of fire that would bring before the words spilled out of her mouth.

“Marlene McKinnon!” she gasped, putting her hand to her chest. Her mother found her composure, and settled herself again as Marlene raised her eyebrows. “You are going. There is no discussion.”

“What are you going to do if I don’t?” Marlene challenged, throwing her chin towards her mother bravely. The impossibly shorter woman faltered slightly at Marlene’s outburst.

“Either way, you cannot stay here. Go to Alenclass or not, you will not live under this roof.” Marlene’s mother’s face went flat at Marlene’s eyes filled with tears. “I won’t let the war be brought into my family.”

“Mum,” Marlene said softly, more like a question. Her voice broke softly, but her mother’s mask did not. Mother turned her back on daughter.

“You wanted this, Marlene.” She placed her hand on the doorknob and squeezed it so the veins became visible in her hand. “Hanging around with those, those people,” she breathed out contemptuously through her nose. “I expect your room cleaned out by the end of the week.”

Marlene’s mother shut the door behind her silently as she exited the room, leaving Marlene’s mouth hanging open. She fell backwards, her knees bucking as she hit the bed.

 She knew that, just like everything else that passed between her and her mother, no one had heard a thing. She knew that it would just be accepted. She knew she wouldn’t fight it; as a matter of fact, Marlene would bring it up at dinner and pretend it was her idea. Everyone would congratulate her on becoming independent. She knew that her mother would smile in a way that seemed almost genuine. She knew that her father would look down at his plate. She knew that her brothers would insist on picking out a flat with her. She knew that her mother wouldn’t say another word. She knew that, in some ways, this would be the best case scenario.

She knew that, in some ways, she would never see her mother again.


(June 17th, 1981)


“Mark,” Marlene said breathlessly as she swung open the door to her flat. She fell into her brother’s arms, burying her head in his neck comfortably.

“I’m so sorry, Marlene,” he comforted. They hadn’t seen each other since before Dorcas died. Marlene backed out of his arms and gestured for Mark to sit down with a wave of her hand.

“Thank you, Mark. I still can’t believe it, honestly,” she said quietly, following Mark to the couch and sitting down next to him. Mark noted how close Marlene was sitting to him, but said nothing.

“Me either.” He put a hand on Marlene’s back as she slouched over her knees. “I have some news,” he said carefully, attempting to segue way to the reason for his visit as painlessly as possible. Marlene looked up at him hopefully.

“About mum and dad?” she asked, hoping that they’d finally come to their senses. He nodded back and swallowed slowly. He didn’t mention anything about how stale the flat felt either.

“Mostly dad. He says he misses you,” he said kind of sickly, looking at Marlene sadly. “He wants to know if you’ll come home. He doesn’t think it’s safe, you living like this.” He took his hand off Marlene’s back and leaned his forearms on his knees, mirroring Marlene.

“I’m afraid Mark. I’m afraid to be alone,” she whispered to herself. Her eyes crinkled as the tears that had become so familiar threatened.

“Then come home,” he urged, putting his hand on hers.

“I’m afraid of that, too! You don’t know what I’ve done, what I’ve seen,” Marlene urged, bracing her hands on her knees. Her arms tensed, and Mark withdrew his hand. “I can’t risk putting you in more danger than I already have,” she whispered.

“At least come and see him, Marlene.”

“What about mum?” Marlene asked timidly, nibbling on her bottom lip as Mark thought of an answer. She knew he was trying to think of a better answer than she doesn’t want to see you.

“Mum’s out of the country on business, and Matthew’s been locked in his room since, you know, Dorcas.”

Marlene looked to her right suddenly as Dorcas was mentioned by name, tears coming to her eyes.

“I’m sorry,” he apologized hastily again. Marlene cleared her throat and shook her head slightly.

“Don’t be. You didn’t kill her,” she said softly but with a bit of bite to it. Mark took to ignoring Marlene’s tears. The two sat back in silence as the sun died behind their heads and cast into the living room. Marlene put her head in her hand and gazed blankly at the floor in front of her.

“I’ll come and visit dad.” Mark picked his head up in surprise, but Marlene held up a finger. “Just one day, I’m not staying at the house. I’m not getting you all in trouble, so don’t try to convince me do you understand?” she asked, her voice trembling slightly.

“I won’t try and convince you, but I can’t speak for dad,” he relented. Marlene nodded in acceptance and then looked back to Mark.

“I’ll see you on the 20th.”



(June 18th, 1981)


“So what is this about, Remus?” Marlene asked curiously, leaning back in her chair in their kitchen. He smiled shyly, attempting to hide it behind his cup of tea. Remus felt angry at himself for being the only one that seemed to be able to move on from Dorcas’ death.

“I’m not sure if it’s the right time,” he proceeded slowly, “but I think it is.” Remus took a deep breath.

“I think I should move out. I’ve found a job."

Marlene’s eyes lit up in a way that Remus barely recognized. She matched his growing smile, and reached her hand out across the counter.

“You found a job? Why didn’t you say anything?”

The corner of Remus’ mouth turned up slightly, and he placed his cup down next to their clasped hands.

“I didn’t want to say anything until I was sure it would stick. And then, it just didn’t seem right to bring it up. But how do you feel about it?” Remus flipped his hair away from his face with a flick of his hands. He took a deep breath, and thought about how he’d been trying not to ramble in front of Marlene and he’d just blew it.

“Of course I’m scared, Remus,” Marlene said quietly, taking a tighter grip on his hand. “But I think it’s time we grew up and stopped being roommates.”

Remus chuckled silently and his shoulders shook involuntarily.

“How are we going to find you a girl if you’re hanging around me all the time?” she asked, screwing up her mouth as she kept rambling.

“Marlene.” Remus gave her a scathing look, but Marlene dismissed him with a wave of her hand.

“Listen,” she said strictly, making Remus’ face fall slightly. “I know how tough all of this has been on you.”

Remus scoffed slightly, but Marlene held up her hand again.

“You don’t understand how incredibly proud I am of you,” she said shakily, her eyes drawing tears. “You have kept us together through so much, and I don’t think I would have survived this without you.” Marlene bit her lip suddenly and looked away from Remus as the tears rolled down her cheeks.

“And you have to deal with the full moons, I just don’t understand how you handle it all,” she said with another sob that shook her torso. Remus leaned forward in his chair, his hands hovering over Marlene’s as they shivered. She took a deep, deep breath and smiled at Remus’ concerned expression.

“What I mean to say is, you deserve to be happy. And I am the last person that should try and stop you,” she said finally, shaking her hair back from her face defiantly. Remus smirked in the way that Marlene used to notice that he smirked. Half mischievous, half apologetic.

“Thank you, Marlene. I just can’t believe I’m finally going to have something of my own,” he blurted jubilantly. Marlene smiled as much as her face would allow.