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 My sister is dead.


She had come back from her exchange at Hogwarts a changed person. She was no longer vivacious, bubbling over with life. She had become hollow, a shell of her former self. Her skin stretched tight over her bones, like it was straining to cover everything that happened to her. I stared at her like she was a
zombie, struck dumb in my fourteen year old state.

"Madeleine, viennent m'aident," she murmured, so unlike herself. The year before, we had left Beauxbatons together, arms looped around the other's. Her head was thrown back in laughter, golden brown tresses bouncing on the way down. I am nearly doubled over, my own chocolate brown hair
hiding my face. The picture still rests at my bedside.

Wordlessly, I moved forward and pulled her luggage toward me. We left, hand in hand.
Our parents died when I was ten. Genevieve, at fifteen, took charge. We lived with tante Edith and oncle Marcel for a time, watching over our adorable cousins, Jacques and Frieda. But as soon as Genny was a legal adult, she and I moved out on the gold our parents left us. I miss my parents, but to be honest, Genny was always like a mother to me, with a whole lot of big sister infused into it.
At the beginning of her seventh year at Beauxbatons, Genny was chosen as one of the few who could go on the exchange program to Hogwarts. She was ecstatic.

I was terrified.

How in the world could my big sister even consider leaving me? How could I face Beauxbatons without my best friend? Sure, I had other close friends my age, Monique Beaumont and Saphira St. Clair. But Moni and Saph didn't know everything Genny did. She managed to convince me that I would be fine without her, and I was.

Just fine.

So the day she left, I stood stock still. Edith and Marcel were there along with Jacques and Frieda, and they fussed over Genny. I hovered back, slightly unsure. Just before her Portkey left, Genny ran over and hugged the breath out of me.
"Toutes les etoiles sont alignees, la lune a commence a briller, la terre est maintenant endormie, et maintenant vous devez les joindre, ma joie," she sang softly in my ear. I smiled through the tears that had traced down my face; she was singing our mother's lullaby to me.
"Je t'aime, Madeleine," she whispered. I smelled her scent one last time: Dior perfume and peppermint, and then her finger was on the snow globe and she was gone. For a straight nine months.

The first few months, we got letters every day. They were bursting with information on the beautiful Scottish castle, the delicious food, and the wonderful new friends she had made: a half-French girl named Dominique Weasley and her extended family/best friends. At Christmas, she wrote me a ten page letter, just describing the Yule Ball she attended with her potential love interest James Potter II. I wrote back, putting down every detail of Monique's bad romance with a village boy older than her; and of Saphira's on-and-off relationship with Pierre Boucher. I included the exciting honeymoon stage of my first real relationship with Marc Asile, who I had very quickly fallen in love with. Even apart, we never ran out of things to discuss.

But after Valentine's Day, the letters dropped in size and content. I didn't read any mention of James, Dominique, or any of Genny's new friends. She was distant, something that scared me. Genny never held anything back when it came to me. I told her all my secrets, and vice versa. She was just tired, I surmised, from the stress of living away. But something nagged at me.

I told Edith, and she, ever the concerned aunt, contacted Headmistress McGonagall. The Headmistress replied, but I thought the tone of her letter was odd. She seemed rather forced in telling us that Genny was flourishing at Hogwarts.

I stayed suspicious, even if Edith was satisfied. She told me I was overreacting. But my sister is a part of my soul. I could tell she was hurting, no matter what McGonagall said. I could tell Genny was dying on the inside, and no one cared. In fact, I had nightmares that could’ve been hers. Looming shadows laughing, fingers pointing, and confused and angry shapes. I often screamed in the middle of the night, seeing Genny crumble from the inside out. Moni and Saph, ever the concerned friends, stayed up all night with me. They knew no one else could match the bond I had with Genny.

I broke things off with Marc in mid-April. He was more concerned with kissing the life out of me than my fears for my sister. He had to understand. My sister was the only immediate relative I had left. Most unfortunately for him, he couldn’t understand. So I broke up with him.

And finally, after exams were over and I left the seaside paradise of Beauxbatons, I excitedly waited for Genny at the Portkey station. I could see her and make her better, I knew it.

Instead, I got a shell of my sister. All summer long, she stayed in bed. I tiptoed around our reasonably sized apartment, bringing her meals in bed and figuring she’d tell me what was wrong when she wanted to.

By mid-July, I was worried sick. So I called Edith and Marcel. They attempted to coax the truth of what had happened after Valentine’s Day from Genny, but she refused. After they left, I just went to her room and curled up next to her. Automatically, she wrapped her arms around me and I flinched. They were bone thin and freezing. Nothing like the softness and warmth that had hugged me good-bye last September. Then she whispered the whole story to me.

She had been becoming the best of friends with Dominique Weasley, which led her to knowing James Potter, Dominique’s paternal cousin. She had hit it off with the “Wotters” as they liked to be called, and was blossoming even more than she could’ve at Beauxbatons. But then came Valentine’s Day.

Genny, who had attended the Yule Ball with James and had become his girlfriend, woke up extremely happy that day. But then she heard something that made her blood run cold.

James and Dominique, her supposed new boyfriend/best friend, were laughing at her. They called her a desperate French girl who was too boring for the likes of superior them. Genny cussed them out in French, threw a lot of things, and spent the rest of the day in the Forbidden Forest, wandering around with tears coursing from her eyes.

Genny managed to get back inside that night. But the next day and every day after, she was subjected to the tormenting of those she had called her friends. All the “Wotters” ganged up against her, calling her worthless. James even went so far as to force her to make out with him, because she was “a dirty French slut.” Genny hadn’t eaten for weeks, hadn’t done anything but schoolwork and sleeping. Even in her dreams, she couldn’t escape. She described her dreams, and they made me give a wail of shock.

The dreams were exactly the ones I had dreamt. I began to cry silently as Genny finished her story with the most chilling thing of all.

All of the older Wotters had had a fun day cursing, jinxing, and hexing my sister. Every time she was within sight, a spell hit her. The influx sent her to the hospital wing, and Genny found out she had contracted a condition called acute corpus somno. It meant Genny’s body had gone numb and she could never feel again.

I slept in her room that night.

The next day, she seemed okay. She was sitting up in bed, and I made her oatmeal and toast. She asked me to run and get her a French Vogue magazine. I took some euros and ran to the corner shop.

When I got back, Genny was dead. Her sheets were bloodied.

My sister slit her own throat rather than be alive with no feeling.

I screamed. I screamed for the longest time. Then I sobbed. And didn’t stop for a good two weeks. My aunt and uncle found me there twelve hours later, holding Genny’s hands and still wailing. They called the police. The medical examiner ruled it a complete suicide. I kept a straight face during her funeral. She was buried next to our parents. I collapsed on the freshly turned dirt after everyone else went to the grim reception. I sobbed, the loss I felt swallowing me whole. I’d lost everyone except for a nervous aunt and uncle and cousins who could never understand the emptiness I felt.

It began to rain.

I hugged Genny’s angel headstone, then stood up. My dress was muddy, my hair a total mess, my fists clenched in total anger.

I made an oath to myself that night. I was going to avenge my sister’s collapse and death. I was going to make sure those who caused her pain felt the same amount of torture. They were going to pay for it.

Or I would die trying.
 

AUTHOR'S NOTE

 

Okay, so we all know I am not J.K. Rowling...unless she's living in a suburb of Chi-town, then yeah, she's not me.

 

So, this is a new novel(la) based very loosely off of the new TV show Revenge. It's an entirely different concept, though...VERY loosely.

 

The phrases in italics are French. Translations below.

 

Thanks so much for reading this! I really appreciate reviews/constructive criticism.

 

The first one is: "Madeleine, come help me."

2nd: "All the stars are aligned, the moon has begun to shine, the earth is now asleep, and now you need to join, my joy."

3rd: "I love you, Madeleine."

 

Thanks again!

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