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Made by Skit Skit @ TDA

Chapter 1:
I Don't Need a Man

I don't need a ring around my finger
To make me feel complete
So let me break it down
I can get off when you ain't around
Oh!
- The Pussycat Dolls


I'm Susie.

Well, Susan, actually...

Yeah, Susan. Just... Susie, though. Call me Susan Ann Quency, and die.

I was born in Bristol, UK. I really don't have any memories of that time - I think mama dropped me too many times, or something. No, actually, I just think I was too young to even make memories.

Anyway.

Mama never liked the weather in England, so when I turned one, we moved to Salem in the United States of Ass-America (I've grown fond of that name), where I went to the Salem Witches' Institute - a horrible all-girls school for witches.

After my third year, I got transferred to Beauxbaton in France as an exchange student to 'seal the bonds between our friends far, far away'. Needless to say, mama was thrilled! She and dad both went to this Hogwarts place in England, and they both talked about it a lot, but mama always wanted one of her daughters to go to Beauxbatons, like her parents. She thought it was some sort of homage to them.

Too bad I got expelled at the end of my sixth year for accidentally putting Madam Petoullas on fire.

"SUSIE!"

Ah, my older sister, Sienna.

She was always the good one, always the perfect one. Hmm, I wonder why! Sienna is the one who's getting married to... Landon What's-His-Name! I'm the geek who always got in trouble... hey, it's not my fault I got expelled from Beauxbaton! But mama still keeps on telling me 'si vous essaieriez de ressembler à votre soeur, je pourrais avoir une raison de pas avoir honte de vous.' ('If you would try to be like your sister, I could have a reason to not be ashamed of you.')

It's not my fault I get in trouble, I don't strut around searching for them! They always find me! I've told mama loads of times, that I'm a magnet for troubles. Guess two times if she took me seriously.

"SUSIE!"

Oh, that's Sienna, by the way. I guess she found the wedding dress. Hmm. Wasn't me! Alright, alright, it was! But hey, I was just looking at it - while drinking coffee, mind you! - when Felix (my Russian Blue kitten) decided to scare me. So there goes the coffee, on Sienna's snow white £300 wedding dress, CUSTOM MADE - oops much!? Naah!

"WHAT!?" I roared back.

"What - have - you - done!?" I heard Sienna growl as she stomped up the old stairs, her voice shaking with anger. "SUSIE!" she roared as she opened the door wide open. "You ruined my bouquet!"

W-what now?

"Bouquet?" I repeated, my gaze falling at the half eaten roses she held tightly in her grip.

Oh, crap.

"Explain!" Sienna said, throwing the roses at me. I duck at the last minute and slowly glanced at the roses in front of me on the bed. With a casual look at Sienna, I sat down on my bed and eyed them more closely. It's like... a small animal of some sort had been nibbling on them. "Well!?" Sienna said, placing her arms firmly on her hips.

"Sorry, I'm not a vegetarian!" I joked and laughed loudly, earning a dirty look from Sienna.

Just then, Felix decided to cough up a hairball. With great interest - and playing some time - I started to study Felix, watch him cough and hiss loudly, before something plopped out - something that most certainly is NOT a hairball!

It's a bud. To be more exact, a rose bud.

Well, it certainly used to be.

Go figure...

"Is that..." Sienna stammered, pointing at the rose bud. "Is that from my rose bouquet!?"

I kneeled in front of the pool of drool, poked the slimey thing with my wand and wrinkled my nose, slowly looking up at Sienna. "Yup!" I informed her brightly.

Three different shades of red formed on her face. How fascinating! Then they started to turn to blue. It's pretty cool... I'm pretty sure that my dear sister is a professional human-rainbow-thing!

"Susie," Sienna breathed heavily, glaring at me. Oh, she tries to be reasonable here. "Stay out of my way, lock that stupid cat in a cage, and just... disappear until the wedding is over!"

And with that, she's gone.

It's not like she will pull this wedding off. She never does. She's like that girl from Runaway Bride! This is her third wedding - the third wedding that will be the end of our family budget, according to dad - and the third time we'll see Sienna run away. Wanna bet?

First there was Roger Bones - a nice pal, hell of a talker and awesome with jokes. I liked him, he was cool - maybe a little heavy with the bottle, but anyway! Sienna dumped him on the aisle. What? What do you mean 'what did I do'!? I helped her, of course! Gosh, what are you people, born - um, I don't know - yesterday!?

Then there was... Merlin, what's his name again? Oh yeah! That French dude! Alain DuVain! Oh yes, you got it. His name says it all. He was deeply in love with his own reflection. I swear he had his first kiss with it. Sienna DuVain... Oh dear Merlin! Why didn't she marry him!? Anyway, she borrowed my broom and flew off. Again, I helped her; I donated her my broom. Mwahah.

And now there's Landon... whatever his name is!

Okay.

So she should be thankful, right? But obviously she's not, and that's cool by me. She's my sister, she's born to make my life a living hell.

But I'm damn happy that she hasn't seen the dress yet! Which reminds me, I should probably get some food.

I hope mama's not home, or she'll start ramble about Landon's distant second cousin once removed - or even worse, Landon's brother - who's 'très charmant et décent pour notre Susan'.

Needless to say what that means.

~ (=^ . ^=) ~

As I dashed down the stairs, avoiding a fatal accident with the bloke-who-carries-in-the-boxes-when-you-move, I dragged my feet to the kitchen, peeking over the boxes to get a sight of mama.

"She's not here," that same guy said, now standing behind me with a grin.

Creepy bastard...

"Oh?" I said and stepped backwards. "And you are?"

"Hans," he said, as his boyish grin became wider - I could recommend my Muggle dentist for him, he did a marvelous job with my front teeth, too.

"Oh," I said and smile knowingly - why, I had no idea. "I'm--"

"Susie, right?" Hans said and looked awkwardly down. "I heard your sister scream earlier."

"Ah," I said and scratched my brow. "Yeah, that's our Sienna. She's getting married," I explained.

"Today?"

"No, next week," I said sighing, as I walked to the kitchen and snatched a bottle of water from the fridge. Damn mama for having some freaky obsession for 'cleaner water'. "Want one?" I offered, noticing Hans still standing there, staring at me.

"No thanks," he said, smiling.

Okay, what's his problem!? It's quite annoying when someone stares at you like that!

Suddenly it hit me.

Oh.

Of course, how could I have forgotten! My Grandmama was a Veela, and it's in our blood. It's supposed to lose it's whole charm when you get married, and get the blessing of Gods above - or whatever. But that doesn't make mama ugly, even if she is married to - guess three times - dad. I think she's beautiful... Especially when she's not talking. Haha! I amuse myself...

"Well, it's been a pleasure talking to you!" I said hastily, hurrying towards dad's study.

But as I turned around, I bumped right into dad, toppling slightly backwards. Dad grabbed my arm and helped me keep my balance, as he turned to Hans, clearly wondering why our house was filled with boxes. Yes, dad is confused almost 24/7 - pity me.

"Err," he started, and then got a goofy smile on his face, finally realizing the situation. "Aha!" he said cheerfully to me before walking over to Hans, leading him kindly, but yet firmly, towards the boxes that still needed to be carried in. "So, Soozer!" dad said, clapping his hands together as he returned to me. I wrinkled my nose at the nickname dad used. "What's up?"

"Same old, same old."

He took hold of my shoulders gently and lead me to his study, pushing me into the chair opposite to his desk and shut the door with a wave of his wand. I waited until he had sat down in his seat, before I opened my mouth - to be silenced by him again. I didn't even say anything, and he's already shushing me!?

"You want your letters, eh?" he asked knowingly, spinning slightly on his chair.

"Duhh!?" I said and rolled my eyes. At times I wonder if dad really can read my thoughts.

"Here you go, and please try to behave so that mama won't need to ban the letters from you again," he said, handing me a thick bunch of letters - most of them I recognize as letters from Emilie, my best friend from Beauxbatons, and the rest just letters from people I didn't even talk to that much. People, who wrote me to ask about some weird group called 'the Marauders' and if I could get their autographs and send them. Okay, the what now!?

It's true; apparently, there's - aka Hogwarts, the worst place on earth as far as I am concerned, AND I AM - some sort of silly little 'gang' of boys that call themselves 'the Marauders'. Ooh, scary! Well, only good thing about Hogwarts is that Charles Perry will be there.

Fortunately, not my boyfriend, but my dear cousin.

"I know you're not exactly fond of moving back to Bristol," he started, and I let out a frustrated groan.

You think? Seriously, dad...

"You just started to make friends at Beauxbatons, and really fit in, Susan," he went on, giving me a sad smile.

I had no friends, dad. Honestly - what planet do you live on, Planet Never-Gonna-Happen?

"Dad, I'm not miserable - yet!" I stated, staring at the ceiling instead. "I just don't get it why Sienna has to get her third wedding that costs more than this house, and she will most likely run out of this one too, now how charming is that?"

"Soozer," he said, standing up, and I silently followed suit. "You know we have money, you don't need to worry about that."

What? Oh, he can't be serious! He thinks I'm worried about our budget for real!? Oh, please! It's not that, it's what the wedding stands for! Sienna always gets what she wants, and mama never makes a gesture of even thinking about saying no for ONCE! Argh, this is SO frustrating.

"Dad," I said again, and walked to the door, clutching my letters tightly. "Believe me, she will run out from that wedding," I said, running my hand through my short, raven black hair.

Dad walked to me, his crystal blue eyes - the same ones Sienna has - twinkling in the daylight that came in from the large window. He put a hand on my shoulder, a smile slowly sneaking its way on his lips, and he gave my shoulder a small squeeze.

"I know, Soozer," he said. "I know she will."

With a stunned look, I frowned at him and turned to open the door, and dad quickly ruffled my already messy hair.

"Dad!" I hissed, trying to shove his hand away, but he just laughed his warm laughter and walked out, leaving me to stare at his back.

I slowly turned to look at the pictures on the old table, picking up one of them. I was always amazed of how mama managed to look so nice and kind, when in reality, she was a bitch. Sorry for the language, but at times it was true. It was all about looking good for the world, and not giving away all the secrets. And it was a scandal when I had cut my hair short in third year.

I never let it grow back after that.

I ran my finger down her hair - the same Sienna and I had - and smiled a bit. At times I couldn't help but wonder how it would be to be like mama. Always calm and collected in public, in everyway perfect, keeping up the perfect family image.

My thought were cut off by Sienna's horrified scream. My eyes immediatly darted up to the ceiling, listening intently as I heard a small thud.

"SUSAN!" Sienna roared. "WHAT THE FUCK DID YOU DO TO MY WEDDING DRESS!?"

Uh-oh.

~ (=^ . ^=) ~

I stared at the table with a bored expression, not even listening to mama's lecture about ruining it all. A small smile crossed my face, but I quickly pulled on my poker face. Mama would kill me if she saw me grinning.

"...all I have ever done is giving you the best things in this world, and how do you thank me!? Hmm? Ruining your sister's wedding day is the most irresponsible, selfish..." mama said, walking back and forth in the kitchen, the sobbing Sienna sitting across from me on the other side of the table.

I looked up at Sienna, watching her hair glue to her cheeks as the tears streamed down from her blue eyes, and loud sobs escaping her mouth. How dramatic. Yeah, Sienna had always been the drama queen in our family. God, it was only a dress!

Which I stated out loud too, and immediatly regretted it.

"Only a dress!?" Sienna growled, her bottom lip quivering slightly. "It's my fucking wedding dress!" she screamed.

"Sienna!" mama snapped. "Keep your language that way, and there will be no wedding at all!"

"But mama!" Sienna said, looking frustrated. "I'm 22, I can do whatever I want!"

"Then go ahead and pay for your own wedding," mama simply said, placing her hands on her hips, staring Sienna down. "Why don't you go up to your room, Alfonso is already there and ready to make a new dress, hmm?"

Sienna stared back at mama, letting out a pained scream and kicked her chair back, stomping loudly upstairs - and of course slamming the door shut so that the whole house shook.

"Merlin..." mama sighed, sitting down heavily in the chair Sienna had just been in, burying her face in her hands. "What do I do with you two?" she asked, but I thought it wasn't a direct question to me.

Nontheless, I had to answer - it's a disease, I know.

"Kick her out, and let me go back to France," I suggested, giving a small smile to her.

"Susan, please!" she said, now rubbing her forehead with her slender fingers. "Don't start again! You know fully well why we had to move."

It's annoying how everytime she says 'Susan', it sounds more like Soo-zan.

I grunted in response, staring moodily at the smooth surface of the table again. "Why can't I be home schooled? I don't want to go to Hogwarts!"

"Hogwarts is not a horrible place," she said, tilting her head to the side. "Think on the bright side; Charles will be there, and he sure is good company for you," she said, taking some pride of the fact that she had such a great nephew. "Besides, your father and I went there. I'm sure you'll make new friends, I for instance met your father!"

"Eww, are you suggesting I will find a bloke there!? Mama, that's gross!" I said, wrinkling my nose.

"Don't be like that," she said, not looking amused. "You're starting to come to an age when you should start looking for a partner, a husband, a man to--"

"I'm done," I said, and stood up abruptly.

I walked to the hall, ignoring the fact that she was following me outside.

"Susan, listen to yourself!" she called after me, as I walked briskly towards the lake. "You can't be like that forever! Before you even know it yourself, you'll be a lonely woman with only cats as your company--"

"I like cats!" I called over my shoulder. I stopped and spun around, narrowing my eyes at her. "What's so wrong with being unmarried, huh? Why do you want Sienna and me to find the perfect husbands this early? Can't you let us just live!?"

"I just want you girls to be happy," she said and looked desperately at me. "I want to make sure that you will have enough of money to live a perfect life after your father and I pass away and--"

"Don't talk to me about death!" I screamed. "Sienna's not even married yet, and I'm not even graduated, and here you're talking about you and dad dying already! Merlin, I haven't even started my last year at that Hogwarts place, and you want me to have wedding plans already!"

I watched as mama looked somewhat guilty at my words, and I slowly turned away from her, walking quietly to the lake - as planned. After a while, mama gave up and returned inside to help Sienna with her dress, as I spent the rest of the afternoon throwing stones to the lake with all my rage.

~ (=^ . ^=) ~

After reading Emilie's letters, I sat crosslegged in the grass, watching the sun go down. I had been too stubborn to go inside and get a coat, so there I sat, freezing my brains out in the late summer evening. It was nothing like in those movies where the heroine sits stubbornly at the lake and watches the sun go down, without a trace of coldness or reality. There was no sense in all this. I was fucking freezing!

"Hey, Susie," came a soft voice, and a figure sat down beside me.

Sienna.

"Hi," I said shortly.

I don't know how long we sat there, without saying a word, just staring at the blank surface of the lake, before I finally spoke. "I'm sorry about the dress, I really am."

Sienna smiled a bit. "I know... that's okay, I'm not mad anymore."

I couldn't help but smile too. Sienna had never been the person to hold a grudge. She put her arm around me in a sisterly way, and I leaned my head against her shoulder. "Look, mama just wants us to be happy."

"If that's what she wants, then tell her that I'll rather die alone and happy, than married and miserable."

Sienna said nothing. But I don't think anything needed to be said. The birds had stopped singing long ago, and I just sat there, wondering, if this would be the last day I could ever be myself again...

OH, ANGST!

~ (=^ . ^=) ~

A/N: Just an idea I played around with, and I felt like trying something different for a change. I really hope this will help me with my other stories, too :D
- Lily xxx

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