Beautiful chapter image from PhoenixAlthor @ TDA!
The Black sisters had a fearsome reputation in the halls of Hogwarts. The whole Black family did. Sirius Black was the heartthrob of Hogwarts: a Gryffindor who was adored by most of the school and was known as the second half of the ultimate pranking duo. The rest of his family however, had a far more terrifying reputation. Sirius and the other Marauders may have the title of the Kings and Queens of Hogwarts because of their popularity, but Black family ruled through their power and domineering superiority.
Bellatrix, Andromeda and Narcissa had been raised as the perfect young pureblood ladies. Their manners and appearance were immaculate, and they always presented themselves to the public eye as girls who doted upon their family. The sisters were the embodiment of the Black family’s traditions and beliefs, sculptured and manipulated from birth.
Apart from Andromeda. Andromeda was different. She defied her family’s perfectly pureblooded status.
‘Anna darling, must you be such a bore all the time?’
Andromeda raised her large brown eyes over the top of the crisp pages of her new textbook to look at the bored expression on her eldest sister’s face. Bellatrix was beautiful there was no doubt about it. Beautiful, yet terrifying. She was immaculately presented, her sharp featured face wearing perfectly done make up and her clothing pressed of all creases and clear of any signs suggesting it had ever been worn before. But it was almost too perfect, where were the flaws? Andromeda knew where they were. She adored her sister, as all sisters do, but over the years she had noticed a darkness develop in her sibling that went beyond the occasional dislike of different things or objects. There was something festering in Bellatrix, which seriously concerned Andromeda; for months now she wanted to fix it. She wanted her sister back. But Andromeda couldn’t shake the feeling that she had lost her.
‘Bella, I’m just trying to get a little ahead that’s all! I can’t fail this year, I need the grades if I’m to secure a good place at the Ministry once I leave Hogwarts.’ Andromeda spoke in a kind tone, placing her heavy book to one side and now giving her full attention to Bellatrix; she wouldn’t let go of her that easily.
‘Ergh,’ Bellatrix rolled her eyes. ‘I don’t know why you bother. I mean a job, honestly? Can’t you just do what mother did? Marry money…’ Bellatrix said lazily to her sister.
‘You know that’s not me.’ Andromeda gave a small smirk, which Bellatrix shared.
‘Damn you and your insatiable thirst for knowledge.’ Bellatrix chuckled.
‘Where’s Cissy?’ Andromeda asked with a frown as she took in her surroundings of the carriage on the Hogwarts express that currently only herself and Bellatrix were occupying. They were well into their journey, the train bearing them through the English countryside, which flashed passed the carriage windows in a blur of colours, and back to their second home; Hogwarts. It was a welcome change for Andromeda, who had craved the warm smells and welcoming sights of the castle, which contrasted the cold harsh environment of her family home; Black Hall.
‘She went to find Lucius and Reggie.’ Bellatrix commented, whilst watching the scenery pass out of the window, droplets of water distorting her view. She was absentmindedly fiddling with the diamond-encrusted ring, which sat, newly placed on her left hand, seemingly distracted from reality.
‘I do adore that ring.’ Andromeda commented with her kind smile.
Bellatrix let her cold expression slip ever so slightly, so the edges of her mouth curled into a small smile, directed at her sister.
‘It’s rather lavish isn’t it?’ She smirked.
‘Quite.’ Andromeda returned the smirk. ‘It’s a wonder how you manage to lift your hand with that thing weighing it down.’ She giggled and for a moment, Bellatrix joined her in a low chuckle. That was until the content peace of their compartment was interrupted by the scrapping on the door sliding opened against it’s rusting hinges. Bellatrix’s face snapped back to her famed cold and stern demeanour instantly as her head shot in the direction of the newcomer. Andromeda let out a small sigh, aware that it would be a while until she heard her sister’s laugh again, and then followed Bellatrix’s gaze, where she was met with the angelic face of her younger sister.
Narcissa Black was the youngest, but arguably the most stunning of all three beautiful girls. Every feature on her face was perfectly proportioned and dusted with the exact products needed to accent her striking cheekbones and deep ocean blue eyes. Narcissa flashed a practiced smile at her older sisters and made her way into the compartment where she sat daintily on the seat, crossing her legs at her ankles. She was followed by four boys, all sporting robes with accents of green and a serpent emblem, the animal the girls all shared on their own uniforms. It wasn’t uncommon for Narcissa to be followed by packs of boys wherever she went, all desperately trying to impress her, but only ever earning nothing more than an aloof nod of recognition. One of the boys who had entered the compartment however, was the only male ever to break past Narcissa’s outwardly dismissive demeanour and find his way to the heart, in which her sisters were treasured above all else in: Lucius Malfoy. Lucius followed his beautiful girlfriend closely and placed himself next to her on the cushioned seat, placing a strong arm around her tiny waist. The two looked adoringly at each other as three further boys sat themselves down in the compartment. Andromeda smiled happily at her little sister. It made her happy to see that she was happy. Lucius was the person that had this effect on her sister, and therefore, Andromeda couldn’t help but be rather fond of the handsome young man, who so affectingly doted on Narcissa. Her line of sight was broken however, by Rabastan LeStrange who had chosen to take a seat next to her, and ended up sitting on Andromeda’s book. Andromeda bit her lip; in all honestly she would have rather had the book sit next to her than Rabastan; her book wasn’t the leading prospective husband of a marriage that Andromeda didn’t want. There was no doubt that Rabastan was handsome, gorgeous even, and any other girl would have killed to even have the smallest chance to be his betrothed (even if it wasn’t yet official between Andromeda and the Slytherin heartthrob.) But Andromeda hated the whole idea of it. She barely knew the boy, but her mother had sprung the apparently casual news, that their family had been in talks with the LeStrange’s ever since Bellatrix’s engagement to Rabastan’s older brother, Rodolphus. Rabastan removed the book from where he sat and handed it to Andromeda with an undoubtedly charming smile and nodded at her, a mysterious glint in his eye. ‘Andromeda.’
‘Rabastan,’ Andromeda returned his nod and tried her best to hide her awkwardness with the perfect manners that had been drilled into her since birth.
‘Rabastan darling! It’s wonderful to see you!’ Bellatrix looked to the handsome boy with a seemingly happy smile, though Andromeda knew it was fake. She had spent everyday of her life with her sister. She could read her like the book she was clutching tightly in her hands.
‘No hello for your favourite cousin?!’ Regulus Black said loudly in mock outrage. Andromeda looked across to the other side of the compartment, where Regulus had sat proudly next to the hunched over, Severus Snape, who was wearing his normal facial expression: a mixture of annoyance and boredom.
My favourite cousin isn’t here to say hello to. Andromeda thought to herself.
‘Only cousin.’ Bellatrix snapped, automatically destroying any relaxed feelings within the compartment, referring to Regulus’ now disowned brother and Andromeda’s actual favourite cousin, Sirius. Andromeda could tell were this conversation was headed: the slaughter of Sirius’ characters and beliefs, which happened to be very similar to Andromeda’s own, though she would never admit it. Instead she chose to re-open her book and loose herself within the words which flowed off of the page, as her sisters and acquaintances launched into a vicious character assassination of someone she held close to her heart.
It was the middle of October when Ted Tonks, the boy who would save Andromeda Black, quite literally, barged into her life.
Andromeda picked at her leafy salad as she half heartedly consumed the small portion, wishing it could have been something larger and more filling, like fish and chips, fish and chips was her absolute favourite! She had only ever had it once, it wasn’t really the type of food for member of high society, but the memory had stayed with her. The delicious taste and simplicity of the greasy food was for Andromeda, the stuff that dreams were made of. Ignoring her surroundings, she scribbled the finishing touches to one of her essays that she had been working on during the previous evening. The charms essay wasn’t due for another week, but charms was most certainly her favourite subject; she was constantly desperate to impress Professor Flitwick, which she so often did. She had decided to submit the essay early, so he could suggest changes, should any be needed.
‘Anna dear, you’re showing your intelligence again,’ Narcissa giggled from across the Slytherin table at her. She to was eating a dainty salad, though she wasn’t working like Andromeda.
‘Cissy there’s nothing wrong with being clever!’ Andromeda smirked with a roll of her eyes as she looked up.
‘I’d much rather be pretty then clever.’ Narcissa commented casually as she pulled out a pocket mirror from her bag and checked her immaculate appearance.
‘Well not everyone can be as beautiful as you Cissy, and anyway, who said intelligence isn’t beautiful?!’ Andromeda protested in a joking manor as she looked back to her work and did a final read through of her corrections. Her attention was soon stolen though, as Sirius appeared in the great hall along with James Potter and Dorcas Meadowes, his two best friends, who he know lived with and called family. They were all laughing loudly and making their way towards the rest of their friendship group; Andromeda wondered what mischief Sirius had been up to and gave a small chuckle and a smirk.
‘Ergh.’ Narcissa looked repulsed at the three friends, who looked like they had just had a thoroughly good time. ‘Hideous isn’t it. People like them just make my blood boil.’ Andromeda frowned. She had never heard her sister speak like that about people. ‘You know Lucius says that the Lord has plans for people like that.’ Narcissa commented casually. The Lord, Andromeda was repulsed. What was happening to her sisters? They couldn’t honestly believe such rubbish, could they? They had been bought up by parents with rather twisted views, yes, but the sisters used to laugh at such things together in the bedroom they had shared when they were younger. They couldn’t really be starting to believe it all, could they? Andromeda’s sisters were drifting further away from her than she had first thought. Or was it Andromeda who was drifting away from them?
As Andromeda opened her mouth to respond to her sister’s awful comment, when she was interrupted once more, this time by the eldest Black sibling.
‘POTTER! BLACK! MEADOWES!’ Bellatrix’s voice echoed through the Great Hall and soon after, she stormed through the doors and into view. Her normally pristine appearance was now dishevelled and her illusion of perfection was shattered. She now looked like a mad woman hunting for revenge. Andromeda’s eyes grew wide at the unusual sight and Narcissa squealed in shock at the state of their sister. Soon other Slytherins entered the hall behind her, including Regulus, Lucius and much to Andromeda’s mild annoyance, Rabastan. Of course an argument soon ensued between Bellatrix and the Marauders; Andromeda noted the bravery and fierceness of both Dorcas Meadowes and Marlene McKinnon as they bit back with sharp tongues at her sister’s insults. She envied them; they were free to speak their mind. Soon hexes were being fired and the Great Hall was consumed by both panic, and cheers of encouragement. Narcissa screamed at the sight of Lucius being hit with some form of hex, which appeared to make large objects resembling bats come from his nose. She quickly stood and gestured for Andromeda to join her. ‘Aren’t you going to come and see if the boys are alright? You should be tending to Rabastan!’ Narcissa cried.
Andromeda frowned at her sister, ‘He’s a big boy, I think he can handle himself Cissy…’ But Narcissa had already quickly moved to find Lucius in the chaos. Instead Andromeda remained seated and calm in the madness surrounding her, until the fight was stopped by Professor McGonagall, with the dismissal of both the Gryffindors and Slytherins involved and the relative normality of lunch returned. Finishing another chapter of her charms book, Andromeda decided now would be a good time to slip away and hand her essay to Professor Flitwick. She gathered her books and papers in her arms and gracefully made her way out of the noise of the great Hall and into the calmer Entrance Hall.
She had only managed a few steps into the space, when she felt something large collide with her back, making her stumble forward and throw her books in front of her, along with the parchment containing her charms work. Her possessions scattered everywhere, and her essay unfortunately landed straight in a muddy puddle near the castle’s large oak front doors. Andromeda let out a small squeak, only just being able to stop herself from falling to the floor and hurting herself. She gave a small sigh, shaking her head, before moving the hair from her face, which was now stuck in her lip-gloss, to try to regain some composure, though she was certain it had probably been completely knocked out of her.
‘Shit! I’m so sorry!’ Came a husky northern voice from behind her.
Andromeda didn’t bother turning around, she simply let out a quiet, ‘It’s okay, don’t worry.’ She bent down and started to pick up her books that were sprawled across the floor’ open on different pages, which were now dog-eared and bent and collected odd bits of work. She reached for her essay exasperatedly, but her small hand collided with force, against a larger one already reaching for it.
‘Here let me,’ the same rough voice came to her ears. She looked up to the awkward apologetic expression on the face of a tall, muscular, sandy haired boy. She recognised him, but couldn’t place where. This boy wasn’t like the ones she was used to associating herself with, he had a rugged edge, which included a smudge of dirt on his cheek. Whereas the Slytherin boys who were usually in her presence, had much more tailored, pampered looks. He extended his hand with the mud-covered essay to her. ‘Oh fuck,’ He scratched the back of his head awkwardly. He was holding a quaffle under one arm; Andromeda thought he must have been trying to catch it when he had crashed into her. It was an honest mistake, though if it had been another member of her family, they would have definitely made him pay. ‘I’m so sorry man...’
‘It’s fine, you don’t have to be so crass with your apology, and I am a Lady, not a man.’ Andromeda found herself saying, slightly offended by the language the boy had so flippantly used in front of her. Gentlemen shouldn’t swear in front of ladies. Her mothers voice drifted into Andromeda’s mind. The boy looked at her face, a sudden recognition filled his eyes, which quickly widened in what Andromeda thought was shock.
‘Oi Ted, common mate! We’ll be late for pract- Bloody hell!’
The shout, which had come from behind Andromeda, and at first was full of laughter at what they had clearly just witnessed, suddenly increased in amusement once she turned to face them. It had come from a group of Hufflepuffs that looked around the same age as her. She frowned at them, what was so funny about her almost get knocked to the ground and her possessions flying everywhere? But they continued to laugh. Clearly Andromeda’s distress was funny for them. ‘Do excuse us your highness, we are all dreadfully sorry,’ The one who had called to the boy, she now knew to be ‘Ted,’ smirked, performing a mock bow to her. She frowned at him; was that supposed to be some kind of dig? Of course it was, clearly. Her frown turned to a hateful scowl towards the boys who where laughing still, but she chose not to retaliate and instead walked towards the stairs, chin raised, without giving them a second glance. She quickly waved the mud away with a flick of her wand, from her essay as she continued to make her way to Flitwick’s office.
Andromeda should have been used to receiving comments like that from other students. Given her quiet personality and the fact she belonged to the House of Black, other students seemed to just assume she was as cold hearted as the others and would grow up involved in the dark arts like the rest of her family. Her family had a certain reputation of thinking themselves as above others, especially Bellatrix and Narcissa, so people often assumed that Andromeda was just like them, not bothering to get to know her. To begin with, this had hurt Andromeda as no one seemed to give her a chance to be her own person, however she had grown to just live with it and tried to stay in the background as much as possible, trying to distance herself from the reputation of her family. She loved her family dearly, but not everyone saw them as she did, they instead saw a bunch of pureblood maniacs and dark arts obsessives and that just wasn’t who Andromeda was. Although she had been taught and raised by their beliefs and when around them she would pretend she believed the same, but the truth was she simply didn’t. She wasn’t hate filled or bigoted. She wasn’t spiteful. She hated the idea of hurting others or that people where somewhat inferior to her because of their blood status. She believed that everyone is born equal and that prejudging people was completely and utterly wrong. However she would never be able to escape her family’s reputation.
As Andromeda walked up the several flights of moving stairs and toward Professor Flitwick’s office, she desperately tried to rack her brain for where it was she had recognised the sandy haired Ted. But she couldn’t for the life of her place him. She wasn’t even sure why it had bothered her so much; he had after all nearly ruined her essay whilst running clumsily into her and was clearly a part of a group who thought of her the same way the rest of the school did. She should by all accounts be insulted and annoyed, but there was something about Ted that had caught her off guard, something that intrigued her. And she couldn’t for the life of her get his rugged good looks out of her mind.
Andromeda waited patiently outside of the charms classroom, happy in the knowledge that she had already finished and handed in her essay a week earlier. She looked up form the textbook she was reading whilst standing there to see several people panicking and doing last minute corrections; including her cousin Sirius who she smirked at as he leant, writing against a wall manically with his friend James; they had both completely forgotten about the essay. Still smirking she went back to her textbook and was completely immersed until she herd the small squeak of Professor Flitwick at the door, at which point she closed the book and held it tightly to her chest, politely listening.
‘Excuse me, excuse me,’ Squeaked Flitwick from the doorway. ‘Could I have everyone’s attention? The included you Mr Black! Yes, very good, well, considering there have been an awful amount of distractions this year, due to the current seating arrangements...’ He glanced to Sirius and James, who held their hands up defensively, ‘I have decided to create a new seating plan. Please take a seat a seat where I indicate to you as you walk inside.’ Slowly and grumpily, the students of the charms class traipsed into the room to the seats indicated to them. Andromeda wasn’t too phased by this, she didn’t care who she had to sit next to, as the likelihood was that they wouldn’t even make small talk with her; she was a Black sister after all.
‘Ah Andromeda dear, fabulous essay, truly brilliant,’ Flitwick said, ‘Could you sit on the third row back to the left please.’
‘Thank you Professor, and of course,’ she smiled, happy that she had produced a good essay. Andromeda gladly sat and reopened her book to finish the passage she had started in the corridor, whilst the other students entered the room. The Lightening released when conjuring the Baubillious charm has the potential to seriously injure another person, therefore some choice to use this charm whilst dueling. There are several accounts of per-
‘Whatcha!’ A familiar voice broke Andromeda’s concentration as a large bag was chucked onto her shared desk with a thud, making her jump. Andromeda turned sharply to see who it was that thought it was appropriate to make such an introduction to her, only to come face to face with the sandy haired, tall, muscular and intriguing, Ted. ‘‘Dromeda, right?’ He asked with a slightly wonky smile, holding out his hand as he took a seat in the chair next to her.
‘It’s Andromeda actually,’ she corrected crisply, her eyebrow raised at the awful pronunciation of her name. Still she gave him a delicate handshake, as a polite young lady should. Now that she thought about it, she kind of liked the way he said her name. ‘Dromeda
‘I’m Ted, Ted Tonks.’ He smiled to her. ‘I’m sorry about last week, I didn’t mean to, it’s just the lads threw the quaffle and I wasn’t looking-‘
‘It’s okay,’ Andromeda found herself saying with a small smile, surprised that someone seemed to be treating her as a normal human being. Something about ‘Ted, Ted Tonks’ drew her to him. His charm pulled her in and his wonky smile set a flutter of something off, deep in her stomach. She was utterly fascinated.
‘So ‘Dromeda, how do ya feel about Quidditch?’ Ted asked her cheerfully; happy that he had managed to make such a pretty, and seemingly untouchable, girl smile.
Author's note: Hello! :) So this is my first one shot and its part of a series I plan on doing. It's a AU which run's along side my current story, 'Kings and Queens of Hogwarts' so give that a read too! :D
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