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Blanketed Dreams by JacksonRobles

Ted smiled, grinning down at Dean. “So then what happened?”

Dean shrugged, casting out his line again. “She left me. It never really worked out to begin with, you know? I mean, we had fun sometimes, but really, we weren’t meant for each other.”

“You believe that?” Ted raised an eyebrow. “You believe you two weren’t meant for each other?”

Dean simply shrugged, gazing pointedly out to the creek. “I don’t know. She didn’t want me—and we really didn’t work. No,” he added suddenly, flicking his wrist and making the line jump, “we didn’t work out.”

Ted stood. “If you say so, I’ll let it go,” Ted made to put at hand on Dean’s shoulder but thought against it. He left the boy and Gornuk to the fish, walking loftily toward a small knoll Dirk had turned to a bedroom. The tall grass waved brightly in the dusk light, the wind pushing it softly as it rippled. They were on the edge of a forest, the warm air reassuring them all.

“We should really set out soon,” Dirk whispered, his eyes shut. “We don’t want to wait in one place too long.”

“I know that,” Ted replied heavily. “But let the boy fish some, will you? He’s getting close to catching something, I just know he is . . .”

Dirk let out a short laugh. “Are you kidding? Tonks! That boy wouldn’t be able to catch a fish if it jumped in his lap. Why do you encourage him?”

Ted shook his head slowly, still stunned at Dirk’s methods. “Why? Dirk? Why do I encourage him? I wonder. That boy is seventeen years old, running for his life day in and day out. He shouldn’t have to be going through this, not at his age. He needs something to take his mind off things. Hell, he just needs something, you know?”

Dirk took the opportunity to turn over, his arms hugging his body. “Whatever, do what you will. He could just as well catch the things with a spell. That stupid hook and line is a waste of time.”

Ted smiled.

“He’s right you know.”

“Wha—Gornuk! Why don’t you sneak up on me!” Ted had a hand to his heart.

“Sorry,” he didn’t sound sorry.

“Yeah, you’re very sorry, I know all about it.” Ted sighed.

“We should move on soon—Gornuk and that boy aren’t going to catch anything, they never catch anything.”

“Doesn’t matter, Gorny, who cares if they catch anything? There’s just something about fishing that calms you down. Turns things innocent, you know?” Ted smiled ruefully, his eyes on the water below.

“N0—I don’t care.” Gornuk stalked away, his eyes on the swaying grass beneath him.

Ted returned to his thoughts, his mind vaguely elsewhere. Andromeda—Nymphadora? He tried not to think about them. He needed to keep his mind in the moment, in the moment he was living, and he couldn’t hope to do that if his mind was always on his son and wife. He sat down, Dirk grumbling something incoherent next to him. He had to keep them alive. He had to keep alive. His wife—and, though he wouldn’t like to admit it, his son—were counting on him to survive.

And, if he were honest with himself, well, he wanted to stay alive for a selfish reason; seeing her face one more time. The woman he loved since the day he laid eyes on her. She was his everything. He sighed. Those thoughts did him no good now. He looked around the clearing, knowing it was pointless; if anyone was going to come they certainly wouldn’t sneak up on them.

“I liked fishing.”

Ted smiled. “So did I.”

“But once you’re allowed magic to fish . . . I stopped. My dad . . . he was too old—didn’t want to do anything. And, well, I haven’t had a son to take with me.”

“I was the same way. Fishing was always . . .”

Dirk turned over, a nostalgic smile gracing his face. “Yeah, I know.”

“CAUGHT SOMETHING!” came an elated cry a few feet away.

Dirk sat bolt upright, looking around. “What?”

“They caught something?” Ted stood, almost laughing.

“They did?” Dirk got to his own feet as well, looking curiously skeptical.

“We did! I don’t know what it is—a cod? But we have a fish!” Dean held the rod at arm’s length, shaking it happily as Griphook fought to get a hold of the grip. “It bit!” He was like a small child.

Situation aside, Ted felt as though his son had caught this fish. He was exuberant in his praise for the young boy. That’s what he was, really—just a boy—at least, that’s what he should have been.

“Hold still, boy!” Griphook growled as Dean’s shaking nearly let the fish free. It wasn’t a large fish by any means, but everyone understood that fact.

“That fish is miniscule,” Gornuk had returned, his frown happily in place.

Ted sighed inwardly, closing his eyes and taking a deep breath. He rounded on Gornuk. He wasn’t going to take this from Dean. “If you say—”

“Who asked you anyway, yeah?” Dean curled his lips, looking defensive. “You can’t have any, how’s that?”

“I wouldn’t want any . . .” Gornuk stalked off sinisterly, his back arched and his pride intact.

Dean scowled at that same back, willing the walls to crumble; to no avail. Griphook shrugged, gripping the fish firmly and ripping it’s face from the hook. Dirk appeared at Ted’s side, his thoughts placid.

“S’small fish, innit?”

Ted visibly shrunk a few feet in defeat. Dean bristled. “You don’t have to have any, if it’s so small.”

Dirk turned, heading back toward his sleeping hole. “Wouldn’t want any of that little thing anyway . . .”

Dean’s happy air had been visibly blown away. He looked at the fish in Griphook’s hand with a small air of satisfaction, quickly dissipating. Ted longed to say something. He had to fix this—somehow—anyway, really.

“Don’t worry about them,” Griphook threw the fish into a small pan he had in his rucksack. “This fish looks plenty tender. I’d prefer it raw, but I know how you wizards are. I’ll have it ready in a few minutes,” with that, Griphook lumbered away, care in his hands.

Dean didn’t look convinced by any means, his hands shuffling aimlessly around, as though they wanted to do something but couldn’t understand how. “I know that fish isn’t anything,” he fell onto the bank, looking out at the small stream with glazed eyes. “But, you know, I caught the thing didn’t I? Without magic, without any help. I caught it. Me.”

Ted fell beside him, wondering whether it would be acceptable to place his arm around the boy. He decided against it. “Yeah, that’s just what I was thinking, actually. Who cares if it feeds us or not?”

Dean smiled. “I’m sorry your wand doesn’t work with the fish . . .”

Ted shook his head, waving the comment away effortlessly. “It’s all right. I don’t really like fish that much anyways . . .”

“Oh . . . you don’t?” Dean looked slightly crestfallen.

Ted wasn’t sure how to respond to that. He was about to speak when Dirk appeared near his shoulder, looking down with drowsy eyes. “Yes? Dirk?”

“Griphook’s making one hell of a ruckus over there with that pan trying to make a fire. He refuses to ask for help . . . I don’t understand him sometimes . . .” Dirk shrugged, taking a seat next to Ted.

Dean looked unhappy about this.

“Look kid, I didn’t mean it,” Dirk instantly began his two part apology. “And that fish wasn’t really that small . . .”

“I know that,” Dean replied quickly, sounding soundly disinterested. “You meant nothing by it, I guess?”

Dirk nodded quickly, plopping himself next to Ted, picking at the small tufts of grass poking through the creek bank. “So . . . when d’you think we should move on? Soon, yeah?” he was trying to speak to Ted, but the mumble came out as less than audible.

“You know, Dean, I think we should eat the fish and get to moving again. Somewhere up in Ashnashellach, maybe—been wanting to go back there ever since I camped there as a kid . . .”

“Sounds good to me,” Dean nodded thoughtfully. He had no idea where that was; Scotland, right?

“Great then! I’ll go see how Griphook’s coming with that fish . . .” Ted jumped to his feet, leaving Dean and Dirk alone for a few moments.

“Oh! I’ll help too, wait up!” Dean raced after the smell of fresh cod.

Dirk shrugged, looking wistfully out onto the riverbed. The water was completely see through. Fish of all shapes and sizes meandered lazily just beneath its surface. He pulled out his wand one last time, pointing it at a particularly attractive looking salmon. “Accio Dinner!” Dirk felt a wave of cold river water soak the edge of his legs as he disrupted the water. He stood, pocketing his useless wand. “Guess I deserved that. Very well—stay in there! I’m not really all that hungry anyway!” he spat at the fish, feeling quite confident with himself. His stomach began rumbling nearly instantly however, and he nearly started sobbing with melodramatic anguish.

Near the blazing fire, however, the rest of the group was having a much more pleasant time of it. “Now, understand,” Griphook began callously, “there isn’t much of this fish. I’d prefer it medium rare, if you don’t mind.”

Ted furrowed his brow. “Medium rare? Grippy—how do you cook a fish medium rare? I always thought that you cooked it until all the grey and red went away . . .”

“Humph. Like a wizard would know proper culinary technique . . .”

“Grippy, from the looks of things, you don’t even understand how to properly gut a fish—have you worked in that bank your whole life? Ever gone camping?” Ted took the pan tentatively from Griphook’s bony fingers, pulling his wand out to repair the damage.

“Why would a goblin go camping?” Gornuk had returned, his eyes as dismissive as ever.

“Where do you keep going?” Ted asked in minor annoyance, surprised at the pointy man’s return.

“You didn’t answer my question,” Gornuk repeated, taking an exhausting seat on the log next to Dean, who looked exasperated at the company.

“It’s not like I know the answer to it—I just as assumed you were being rhetorical.”

“I was.”

Ted nearly slipped from his log, barely catching himself on the grass as the pan sailed into Dean’s lap. “I’ll never understand goblins,” he muttered, apologizing for burning Dean. “I take it you’re back for the food? Or is that where you keep going, Ol’ Gurny?”

“I’m keeping watch, aren’t I?”

“Watch—for—what?” Ted looked pained as he removed the excess of the fish and threw it into the fire. “You think they’ll sneak up on us, Gorny? After last time, I don’t think they’ll make the same mistake.”

Dean smiled proudly. They had bested four Snatchers that day. The goblins ran for cover—but Dirk, Ted and Dean all dueled their hearts out, running and cursing. Two would have been taken to St. Mungo’s—Dean showed no mercy.

“I just think it’s smart to stay smart, don’t you?” Gornuk snapped back. “How long until the fish is ready?”

“So you’ll have some then? Wonderful—more for all of us . . .” he trailed off cynically as he put the pan over the tumbledown fire. They would eat better than they ever had before on their travels.

Quickly it became night, as the sun set slowly, casting yellow, orange then pink cascades over the clouded sky. Eventually gray took the dark blue sky into blackness, and stars overtook the clouds from their nesting place. The four companions were all talking quietly, Dirk occasionally throwing his thoughts into the conversation from the riverbank.

“I just think that—given proper training, Wood could lead the United to a championship,” Dean argued seriously, having fought tooth and nail Ted’s opinions.

“And I keep telling you—their Seeker has nothing going for him; he’s farthest from the spectrum of Krum—I don’t know what you’re thinking . . .”

“Are you kidding?” Dirk called lazily, his voice drowsy. “He’s saved the Chaser’s embarrassment, that’s for sure. Caught five Snitches out of seven games—that’s not bad.”

“But the injuries! He can’t keep crashing into the stands—he’s such a sporadic flier!” Ted couldn’t understand their point; that was the end of it.

“Are you three going to argue Quidditch all night?” Griphook glanced to Gornuk carefully, completely bored with the conversation. The fire illuminated their faces and not much else, the fish having been completely devoured hours ago. They were hungry, and as soon as the sun came up they knew they would have to move camp again.

“Well—why not? What else would we talk about? The different lengths of goblin noses? Or the current exchange rate of Galleons to Royals?”

Dean shared a laugh with Ted, but Dirk sounded oddly quiet. Ted noticed this, but didn’t think to act on it.

“Stupefy!” The spell hit Griphook square on the nose, flinging him backward over the log onto the soft grass and out of sight.

The three stood to see its caster, but the darkness showed nothing. A voice, however, made its palpability known not long after.

“Good to see you again—Teddy!” Fenrir crept into view as a green light shone in the distance, illuminating the river. “Oops—looks like Mr. Creswell resisted. You won’t resist, will you Teddy?” Fenrir smiled, showing sharpened teeth.

Two more snatchers appeared at his side.

“Last time you were able to get away—we won’t be so forgiving this time.” Fenrir’s smile looked horrifying. Ted nearly shook from fear.

Dean drew his wand, holding it in front of his chest like some kind of shield. Ted knew better. He put his hand to the wand. He couldn’t let this boy die. Then again, he couldn’t let the boy he taken hostage, either.

“And you won’t be escaping. You Disapparate—we’re coming with you. And we will kill you—either you come with us, or you die, like little Cressy, here,” Fenrir brandished to the small man’s corpse. Two more Snatchers were dragging him by his feet to the fire.

“What do you mean—you’re coming with us?”

“Won’t you find out? Try it—I dare you,” Fenrir’s eyes weren’t lying. Ted was petrified of those claws; he wouldn’t tempt them. Apparation wasn’t the answer. But it was dark. Perhaps, if the proper diversion could be manifested . . .

The fire was the obvious choice.

“So you’ll come quietly?”

Ted slowly took his wand out, smiling himself now. The two Snatchers looked to be idiots; just like Fenrir. Weak with a wand, they were broke and probably former blueblooded Purebloods. One had a handlebar mustache, while the other, slightly less cross-eyed, looked at both Gornuk and Dean at the same time.

Ted meticulously pointed his wand at the fire, purposefully covering it with his free hand. The moment was soon—he’d grab Dean’s hand and run. They’d escape. They just had to run.

However, something could go wrong. And it did. Gornuk was a fighter. But he was also a coward. He took off running as the Snatchers moved forward—both bolted after him and Fenrir bared his claws.

“Ha-ho-ho! Is that you? Is that you Teddy? Oh how I’ve missed you! It’s so good to see you again.”

While Gornuk’s escape caused a slight hiccup in Ted’s plans, it was Fenrir that was aiming for the kill—Gornuk had managed to get rid of four potential problems. Fenrir wasn’t an impossible obstacle—and there were two of them, after all.

“Fenrir—it’s so great to see you again! I trust you’ve not yet found yourself a suitable shaver?”

“Talk all you want Teddy!” His laughter was forced. “Let’s get this over with.” He leaned forward, ready to charge.

“Then come at me—see if you can finally catch me.” Ted held Dean carefully at arm’s length, his hand covering the wand that could cause problems. His own wand was pointed directly at Fenrir.

“I’ll tear you apart. Finally reap that seed I sowed all those years ago when I bit that boy. You’re his dad now, aren’t you? Heard about that—yeah, I have. Little Nympho and Remus—are you worried about your grandkids? Think they might be . . . monsters?”

“What are you talking about?” Ted was honestly curious, the line about Remus causing tangible damage to his will. That poor boy . . .

“Won’t it be amazing to discover that your first grandchild is poisoned—think what you want about Werewolves, but I promise we’re all forgotten souls.”

“I’ll never feel that way about my grandchildren. No matter what.”

“Say that again when you see him in his true form! You won’t accept him for what he is—you’ll always be praying for a cure every time you look at him—I just know it!” Fenrir began to shake with anger.

“Why would I wish such pain upon my son?”

Fenrir scoffed, having heard quite enough. Dismissing Ted with a wave of his hand, he instantly began forward, his wolf-like speed astounding Ted. He froze—unable to curse the fire. He could only look into his soon-to-be killer’s eyes. They were yellow. Yellow eyes. Yellow eyes were going to kill him. Yellow eyes were going to be the last thing he would ever see.

“CONFRINGO!” Dean had wrenched himself free from Ted’s grip and blew the pit into fiery splinters as Fenrir jumped over it. “Come on!” He gripped Ted’s hand and yanked him from the campsite, off into the high grass.

Ted could only allow Dean to pull him. His mind was frozen—those eyes. They were murderous eyes, without remorse—without worry. This was a man who had intention of eating them. Feasting on them like they had the fish. And not a single qualm? Not a worry? Not a subtle showing of regret or remorse? What was Fenrir? What kind of monster could he possibly be? Ted couldn’t understand.

“I think we’re clear . . .” Dean led them into tall bushes to hide, a great distance from the campsite. “We should be safe here . . . maybe we could keep going deeper in . . .”

Ted wasn’t listening. He didn’t care—he understood everything very clearly now. Fuck. He hadn’t swore in ten years. Fuck. He hadn’t had any reason to—fuck. They were going to die. Both of them. Like Dirk Creswell. A flash of light and nothing more. That’s all he ever amounted to—a flash of green light and a smile on Fenrir’s face. Intimidation. And what of Gornuk? Those bastards were probably torturing him into insanity, just for kicks. Because—while they were idiots—they were the most ruthless human beings imaginable. They were compensating for their lack of intellect, Ted figured.

“HEY! GUYS! WHERE’D YOU GO?” Fenrir sounded beyond angry, as his voice was filled with joy. Only with joy came the true anger. “WHERE THE FUCK DID YOU LITTLE SPITS GO? Think you can hide from me? I’ll fucking find you—fucking tear you to shreds, yeah, that sounds good. Because you can’t run from me. There’s nowhere to go—you know that, right? NOWHERE TO GO!” Fenrir’s voice moved around a small distance away—he was pacing in the field.

Ted began to panic, his breathing rising and falling. Death—he was going to die. Fenrir was going to feast upon his flesh. Tear him limb from limb—he was going to die. He couldn’t die—

“Mr. Tonks—Mr. Tonks!” Dean hissed, barely audible, tugging at Ted’s shirt. “Mr. Tonks! What should we do? What do we do?”

Ted didn’t answer him. Fuck. They were going to die.

“Maybe I should tell you about me, boys. While you wait in hiding for me to find you—would you like that? Want to know a little bit about your killer? Let me tell you about the many children I’ve turned. Like it’s my fucking job or something—I guess it is. Fourteen kids. Ten are still alive. Four I got carried away with. Fourteen mothers crying over their kid’s body. I remember Remus’s mummy! Fuck it was tantalizing. I wanted to bite her then and there. But, well, you can imagine the problems posed by that. But, I’ll be honest, I checked her house last night one more time, hoping she was hiding in the floorboards somewhere. The things I would have—well, you get the idea.” Fenrir’s voice was getting closer.

“I can’t wait to hear you scream. You can’t imagine the noises that you are going to make. The pain you are going to feel. Think wands do scary things? You’ve never, not in your wildest dreams, seen what I’ve done. I still remember the look on the face of that Auror when he saw what I did to that child. I’ve never been happier. But, I’ll be honest, I think tonight’s going to be a memorable night.” His voice was so close.

Ted’s mind, reverberating with these words over and over, finally began moving again. Death was quickly approaching, but if it would claim a victim tonight—he intended to be sure it would not get a hold of Dean. He would die—Ted. He’d had a pleasant a life as any. This boy wasn’t ready, though. Not to die.

“Stupefy!” He didn’t feel the need to apologize. Dean couldn’t help him now, and, as his limp body fell to the Earth, Ted took off in a dead run.

He could practically hear the smile form on Fenrir’s lips as he made chase. “And we begin!”

Ted took turn after turn, trying everything and anything he could think of to throw Fenrir off his trail—but those grunting breaths were getting closer and closer.

“I see you Teddy! I see you Teddy! I SEE YOU TEDDY! COME HERE TEDDY!” the voice was screeching in Ted’s ears—the claws ripped through his back. He cried out in terror and pain. Fenrir was atop him, happy. “GOT YA!”

Ted was instant. The wand at the monster’s throat—he blasted the werewolf into the far tree and tried to take off running again, but the pain, he could feel the blood trickle down his back. The pain was unreal, almost as though it wasn’t happening. He got a few paces away before his ragged breathing slowed.

He could hear Fenrir cursing. So many words in such a quick succession. Ted gripped his wand tightly. It was his last defense. He had to survive. Andromeda . . . Nymphadora . . .

“Oh that’s nice. I like that. I like it when they resist! It’s so much more fun!” Fenrir began walking slowly, purposefully, in Ted’s direction.

“What do you want with me? Why me?”

“Don’t ask such a stupid question.” Fenrir took each step a little faster than the last, watching Ted’s wand with great interest, a terrifying smile in place.

Ted continued backing up, one arm stretched out at Fenrir while the other groped around wilding behind—making sure he didn’t walk accidentally into a tree. He wasn’t watching where he was going, however.

Fenrir began to charge again, his lips flinging spit in every direction as Greyback could no longer hold in his lust. He dodged two red flashes of light and finally connected with that sweet flesh, tumbling down a small hill into a creek.

Thomas Thatcher—one of the younger Snatchers—lost his dinner all over a Scots Pine as he looked upon the remains of what Fenrir said was a human. Thomas couldn’t believe it, however. “Why’d you kill him?” Zev had asked. Fenrir nearly killed him; Thomas wasn’t so stupid, but he would have liked a larger reward than just one Muggleborn and a goblin. And Ted Tonks would have been a much better prize than Dean Thomas and Griphook the Goblin combined—but you take what you’re given—so they Disapparated without tally to the gates of the Malfoy Manor, hopefully in for a real treat.

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