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Teddy Lupin and the Hunter's Moon, Chapter 24: The Place Between, pt. 1 - The Phantom Librarian
Spewing out too many words since November 2003
fernwithy
fernwithy
Teddy Lupin and the Hunter's Moon, Chapter 24: The Place Between, pt. 1
Check out kobegrace's Badass Victoire Potterpuff.

Chapter 13 of FG (Revelo Lupinus) is up at the Quill. Mostly little tweaks.

Greyback chased Victoire and Teddy to the Shrieking Shack. He injured Teddy's leg. Victoire thanked him for this by stabbing him in the face with several knives. Teddy got her through the Floo network and sent her to Shell Cottage, leaving him alone with Greyback in his disintegrating house.

Table of Contents and Summary So Far




Greyback dragged himself into the parlor, smiling grotesquely, his bleeding face shedding gore with each step. "Your little girlfriend leave you all by yourself?" he asked. His words were perfectly understandable, but sounded like they were surrounded by protective packing spells, crackling and popping through bubbles of blood.

"Not for long," Teddy said. "My godfather's on the way."

"Oh, this place is protected enough. Mathilde was a clever girl, but she said she couldn't get in here. Or the tunnel, once they got it magicked up. Reckon it'll take a good five minutes, maybe ten, for your dear old dad--or, well, closest you got, anyway, as your real father's not even much of a meal for the worms these days--"

Teddy morphed. It was a subtle one, a thickening of his cheekbones, a flattening of his sharp, Black nose. He raised the widow's peak on his forehead. Small changes... but Greyback stumbled backward like he'd seen a ghost. Teddy glared at him. "Didn't warn you about everything, did they, Greyback? Did you skip your lessons?"

"You're not him. He's dead. Dead as your mum. I saw 'em both there at the battle, you know. Some old bat brained me, then something must've took me down. Woke up on the hill. Bellatrix woke me up as she went by, laughing. And who should be there but Lupin and his little twist of tail? Her bleeding out right there on top of him, him wailing like a babe in the woods." He raised his voice, mocking: "Oh, poor little wife, gone away from him forever! It's a right tragedy! Leaving a poor little orphan, too! 'Course, that was her own fault, wasting time in a battle trying to heal up the breathing dead. Especially with her dear Auntie on the prowl."

Teddy felt a knife twisting deep inside of himself. The thought that the only person who knew, who had been there, was this monster... But the knife was far away. Something cold seemed to fall over him, a cloak made of ice. "You watched them die."

"Oh, she was dead by the time I got there, barely started healing him before Bella took her out. But your dad was alive. You might say I was holdin' his hand when he finally karked it." He gave another horrible smile, and Teddy understood what he meant.

"You took his ring," he said.

"Threw it halfway back to the castle. I think a giant stepped on it. A bloke shouldn't die pretending to be something he's not," Greyback said with deep, jocular piety. "Shoved her off him, too, so he'd have room to breathe his last few breaths, which I hear he didn't have the last year or so." He seemed to have got over his surprise at Teddy's morph, but Teddy didn't let it go. It felt comforting somehow, and right, to wear Dad's face for this. Greyback took a few more lurching steps into the room. "But I reckon I'll take you with me, and when the moon comes up in a few days, I'll give you everything she tried to take from your dad."

"Right, because before he fell in love with Mum, he was in a real rush to go with you."

"His parents filled his head with strange ideas, but he came back to me in the end, 'til his Little Red yanked him back."

"He was spying on you," Teddy said, backing toward the fireplace, fumbling in his pocket for the cubes of Floo powder, willing them not to fall out as he wobbled around on his sprung knee. "He was spying for Dumbledore, you idiot."

"That's what he told himself. Might even have told other people. But I know better. He found out what it meant to be in a pack. His only mistake was trying to take mine. He wasn't any different from the rest of us. Sweet finally figured that out. Oh, sorry. Vivian. She's not going for that high-sounding nonsense anymore, though."

Teddy cast about for something to throw at him.

Let him talk, Teddy. Think.

It was Dad's voice, but Teddy didn't think it was really Dad. It seemed more like his own brain throwing out a rescue flare. He backed a few more steps toward the fireplace. He could feel the good heat of the fire relaxing his sore muscles.

"Think you're going somewhere, do you?" Greyback said. "I can follow. Oh, I know, they say only one through the Floo at a time, but we both know that's just about being careful. If I grab on with you, you'll pull me along wherever you're going. Maybe to see your godfather's little boys. Is that what you've got in mind? Or maybe your Granny. She's a bit old for me, but she always looks delicious anyway."

"You'll die from losing blood before you can do anything," Teddy said. Something was trying to catch in his mind, some idea. A way to hold Greyback here until Uncle Harry could get to him.

"Oh, I think I can hang on until this little scratch heals up. Won't be quite so pretty, but then, neither will your little girlfriend once I find her to pay her back. No one'll ever think she looks like her mum again. So what do you say? Shall we go straight to her place?"

This time, the voice didn't come from one of his parents, or from his own head. It came from Kirley Duke, and Teddy could hear it as clearly as he had at Weird World: We're in a place between places, which isn't a place at all... And for God's sake, don't try to go back through this one without more powder, you'll be cooked.

He pulled one of the Floo cubes from his pocket, stowing the other safely. Would Greyback buy it if he didn't hear a destination? How much would Mathilde have taught him?

"I see you thinking, Lupin," Greyback said, coming closer. "You think you have a safe place, somewhere it won't be any trouble for anyone. We're made for trouble, though. We're meant to cause as much of it as we can."

"I'm not a werewolf," Teddy said.

"Well, I'll fix that right enough. But it's not just werewolves made for trouble. We're just more honest about it."

Teddy said, "Number Twelve, Grimmauld Place," but didn't throw his Floo cube into the fire. It was just for show. And he wanted to make sure he waited long enough for it not to go through. He narrowed his eyes. "If this is the whole bit where everyone's out to take everything from anyone who can't hold onto it, get over it. I outgrew that. Most people do."

"Most people learn to pretend. Doesn't make 'em any different." Greyback came closer, almost within arm's reach. "Your dad was a great one for pretending," he said. "Why, the way he walked around, you'd think he didn't have a desire in the world. Just to float across the bloody tulips being saintly Professor Lupin. But he knew better. We all knew better. Bet your mum got a good lesson in how delicate and saintly he was. Sure didn't take him long to sprog her up, did it? And as soon as he'd got enough of what he wanted, he scarpered."

The icy cloak blew away, and Teddy made a mad grasp at it. "Stop talking about that!" he hissed.

Greyback laughed, his blood making a gurgling sound in the back of his throat as he did. "Oh, right. I'm sure it was all for her own good. 'Course, maybe she liked it that way. Most women do, once they get a taste of it. Don't reckon Sweet's going to have much use for polite little schoolboys anymore."

Teddy's mind filled with red rage, and he fought to keep from ending everything by jumping on Greyback and tearing at him with his bare hands. That would be the worst thing he could do, and he could almost feel other hands on him, staying him. He clenched his teeth and said, "You're sick."

Greyback lunged forward, and Teddy backed up almost to the fireplace. "Better run now, lad," Greyback said, "or you're going to burn yourself up. Or maybe you think you'll fight for the lady's honor."

Teddy threw the cube of Floo powder into the fire, and the light in the room went green. He tried to look wary, like he was trying to avoid Greyback's grasping hand, but he was really waiting, waiting for the old, gnarled arm to reach out and grab his arm.

It did.

With a teetering step on his injured leg, Teddy fell back into the fire, his free arm outstretched, dragging Greyback with him into the place between places, into the void.
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Comments
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From: (Anonymous) Date: December 12th, 2007 04:33 am (UTC) (Link)
waited to go to bed to read this. have been following you since shifts! love this story - especially victoire from last chapter.

also, is it too fan-girlish to say FIRST!!!!
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: December 12th, 2007 05:18 am (UTC) (Link)
Thanks!
From: (Anonymous) Date: December 12th, 2007 04:44 am (UTC) (Link)
I'm holding faith in Teddy's outstretched hand. Please hold on Teddy!!!!!

Your Greyback shares an incredible self-centeredness with Rowling's Voldemort (and most other Villains - yes with a capital "V" :-) ). It's their inability to see the world through any lens but their own that is their final downfall. Thank gods they haven't figured out how to be empathetic and evil. We'd all be doomed! Although hopefully empathy and evil are too dichotomous to exist in one person.

Anyways...ACKCJIOTIDLACLKNAOCLCLMAANBOIAAACLAKAKCKAKCKCKKAKKCKAKC!!!!!!!!!!
Can't wait for part 2.

-Sqveege
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: December 12th, 2007 05:20 am (UTC) (Link)
It's possible to be evil and empathic, as long as you don't act on the feelings you understand in the other person. It could be really, really scary to have someone who understands exactly how to manipulate your emotions.

But true, you can't be someone who actually cares what someone else feels. Villains are such narcissists!
willowbough From: willowbough Date: December 12th, 2007 04:49 am (UTC) (Link)
Brrr! Poor Teddy--having to hear about his parents' last moments from a sicko like Greyback. (Although ::grasps at straws:: couldn't he be lying, just to cause maximum distress?) The thought of Remus seeing Dora murdered in front of him is devastating. I had wondered if he was so calm in the Resurrection Stone scene because he didn't know then that Bellatrix had killed Dora and thus orphaned Teddy.

I'm relieved that Teddy managed to keep his head in the face of terrible provocation, and I look forward to seeing just what he means to do now that he's got Greyback trapped in the Floo network with him.
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: December 12th, 2007 05:23 am (UTC) (Link)
His being so calm in the Resurrection Stone scene pisses me off anyway, even if he didn't know Dora was dead, because he just got hugely cheated out of his life. Best I can do is assume that the phantoms brought back by the Stone are very partial representations, and brought back to the need of the person using it. Harry needed them to be peaceful Patronus-like phantoms, so that's what they were. (I don't want to think about what the Peverill brother called back.)
(Deleted comment)
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: December 12th, 2007 05:24 am (UTC) (Link)
We're getting close to the end. I'm only anticipating one more cliffhanger, per se. :)
lollapulizer From: lollapulizer Date: December 12th, 2007 05:00 am (UTC) (Link)
THANK YOU KIRLEY DUKE!

I'm not entirely sure of what Teddy's plan is. I have a vague idea of where it might be heading, but I'm not entirely sure it would work, so I doubt what I'm thinking is actually what's going to happen.
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: December 12th, 2007 05:25 am (UTC) (Link)
Somewhere out there, Dora Lupin is extremely proud of her taste in tee shirts.

I'm not entirely sure his plan would work, either, but... it sort of has to. :)
(no subject) - (Anonymous) - Expand
darth_pipes From: darth_pipes Date: December 12th, 2007 05:05 am (UTC) (Link)
Amazing scene. You bring Greyback to life as the vile villain that he is. Some good thinking on Teddy's part too.
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: December 12th, 2007 05:25 am (UTC) (Link)
Greyback is a lovely villain. You can't possibly go over the top with him.
From: (Anonymous) Date: December 12th, 2007 05:09 am (UTC) (Link)
I love this story, but I can't understand where Harry is and why he's taking all this time to get there. I hope there's a good explanation for his delay and it's not just a story convention to give Teddy and Greyback time for a conversation.

I'm still on the edge of my seat, though, as I have been for the last few days, thanks to this story. (Sorry for the anonymity, as I'm not an LJ user -- but I post on SugarQuill as Mugglemum, and I'm a big fan of yours)
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: December 12th, 2007 05:27 am (UTC) (Link)
It's a total story device. ;p (Seriously, Greyback's right that it's just a question of it taking time to get there because he can't Apparate out of Hogwarts or into the Shrieking Shack. He has to extricate himself from the battle, get beyond the Hogwarts protections, Apparate to outside of the Shack, then get inside. And it's really only been maybe three minutes.)
marikenobi From: marikenobi Date: December 12th, 2007 05:24 am (UTC) (Link)
Go Teddy Go!

fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: December 12th, 2007 05:28 am (UTC) (Link)
He's doing his best!
cleindori From: cleindori Date: December 12th, 2007 06:00 am (UTC) (Link)
Floo Network Void is, technically, in a fire...

*chortles*

("When you fall in a bottomless pit, you die of starvation." ~Teen Girl Squad)

Ew, Greyback. Such a nasty piece of work. So proud of Teddy for keeping his head instead of going off half-cocked in Gryffindor fashion. :)
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: December 12th, 2007 04:50 pm (UTC) (Link)
I have been snickering since the first time you mentioned Greyback dying in a fire. I love it when there are wishes I planned to deliver on anyway. :)
obsfuscation From: obsfuscation Date: December 12th, 2007 06:03 am (UTC) (Link)
Oh man, Teddy with the plan is fantastic. Also, boy howdy do you rock- I know Teddy will make it, but I am FALLING APART waiting for tomorrow. GAH! Excellent installment. :)
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: December 12th, 2007 04:51 pm (UTC) (Link)
I think Teddy's got a cold and calculating side to him which he doesn't use often, and doesn't, thank God, control him, but comes in damnably handy when he needs it.
amamama From: amamama Date: December 12th, 2007 06:41 am (UTC) (Link)
Ooh! *is breathless* Have to run, but loved this - so you're cooking Greyback in the floo, eh? poetic. *evil grin*
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: December 12th, 2007 04:52 pm (UTC) (Link)
One roast Greyback, coming up.

Edited at 2007-12-12 04:53 pm (UTC)
summoner_lenne9 From: summoner_lenne9 Date: December 12th, 2007 06:45 am (UTC) (Link)
I was certain he was going to go to the Auror department- there's a floo through there, Greyback couldn't get through so he's be trapped, and even if he somehow could be... they'd end up in the AUROR department. He could PROBABLY be taken down.

It's actually rather like when I was reading the Battle of Hogwarts and Harry was being all 'But where could he have hidden the Horcrux? I DON'T KNOWW!" And it was so obvious to me- CHAMBER OF SECRETS YOU IDIOT! And when it was mentioned how Ron and Hermione had run off to a bathroom and he didn't understand it I rather wanted to strangle him.

Of course, looking back, it makes no sense to hide a Horcrux in the one place where it could be destroyed. Even if the Basilik was not supposed to do anything without his direction, something could have gone wrong, and the diary represented to him that part of him, anyway.

But during the battle, I was SURE it was the Chamber.

So I rather was screaming at Teddy now GO TO THE AUROR DEPARTMENT YOU IDIOT!

This version, of course, is more interesting though :).

Oh, and per usual for Greyback- die. Please. Just die. And be castrated. That way you can stop making obscene sexual remarks left and right.

And just... DIE. PLEASE.

I have to applaud you Fern, I really do. Your cliffhanger's are killing us all. Of course I get caught up in time for the cliffhangers *sighs*
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: December 12th, 2007 04:54 pm (UTC) (Link)
I was thinking "Chamber of Secrets" myself.

Taking Greyback to the Aurors would be a great idea, but would deprive Teddy of revenge, so it conveniently slips his mind.
alkari From: alkari Date: December 12th, 2007 07:10 am (UTC) (Link)
*hangs onto edge of cliff by fingernails*

My only horrible, horrible thought is: PLEASE don't let Greyback be wandering around forever, lost in the Floo network!! I don't mind him being sent to another dimension, but the idea of some unsuspecting person using the Floo being grabbed out of nothingness by Greyback ...
redlily From: redlily Date: December 12th, 2007 11:55 am (UTC) (Link)
It would add a rather spicy element to this otherwise family-friendly method of travel.
jedi_chick From: jedi_chick Date: December 12th, 2007 07:53 am (UTC) (Link)
Go Teddy! You take advantage of that typical villain's need to monologue while you think of a brilliant plan! ;~)

It's very fitting that Teddy is using his dad's face against Greyback. If Remus can't be there to take him down in person, at least a part of him will. And I'm quite impressed that Teddy not only formed a plan while Greyback was being his general nasty self, he formed a plan in order to stall Greyback until Harry shows up. Way to depend on the adults, Teddy!

I'm ever so grateful to Kirley Duke right about now. :~)
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: December 12th, 2007 04:57 pm (UTC) (Link)
Monologuing villains are the friends of heroes everywhere.

And yeah... I hope the last thing Greyback sees is Remus's face. I'm, er, not sure entirely sure that Teddy has any intention of waiting for adults, no matter what he's telling himself.
author_by_night From: author_by_night Date: December 12th, 2007 12:38 pm (UTC) (Link)
Oh man... brilliant chapter, though. I loved how you wrote Greyback, as he was trying to manipulate Teddy, trying to make him think Remus really wanted to be part of Greyback's gang (thank God Teddy didn't listen). I'm looking forward to more.

fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: December 12th, 2007 04:58 pm (UTC) (Link)
Greyback doesn't know that Teddy got the ring back, or that it had Remus's memories on it. If memories are a part of identity, then Teddy is at least partly Remus, and knows better. I think.
From: smishli Date: December 12th, 2007 01:08 pm (UTC) (Link)
Let's hope Teddy's practicing in keeping his balance comes in handy!!

Excellent update. Greyback is just too disgusting for words.
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: December 12th, 2007 04:58 pm (UTC) (Link)
Isn't he? Blech.
satakieli From: satakieli Date: December 12th, 2007 01:40 pm (UTC) (Link)
I know that being forced into a situation where she will kill innocent people is worse for Vivian than being raped by Greyback. I know that. Still. That bastard deserves everything that's coming to him, in spades.
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: December 12th, 2007 05:00 pm (UTC) (Link)
Oh, yeah.
hermia7 From: hermia7 Date: December 12th, 2007 02:16 pm (UTC) (Link)
Soooooo smart!!!!! I love how Teddy THINKS (even if it is with some internal aids).... He doesn't plunge in like Harry would; he uses Greyback's stupidity against him. Brilliant! Can't wait for the Between the Floos scene!
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: December 12th, 2007 05:01 pm (UTC) (Link)
he uses Greyback's stupidity against him

And there's so very much of it to use!

I'm looking forward to the next scene myself, though I'm working out the "choreography" of it to make it work right just now.
gloryforever From: gloryforever Date: December 12th, 2007 02:37 pm (UTC) (Link)
I think it's a testament to how hooked up I am with your story that I just got up *this early* on a school holiday to catch up with what I didn't get a chance to read last night.

Awesome chapterlet, as usual and ... what the heck is taking you so long, Uncle Harry?

fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: December 12th, 2007 05:02 pm (UTC) (Link)
It really hasn't objectively been that long. Maybe five minutes. But Teddy needs the time to take care of it himself.
marycontraria From: marycontraria Date: December 12th, 2007 02:46 pm (UTC) (Link)
I've been enjoying Teddy up until now, but I just fell in love with him. Right at the line where he didn't jump on Greyback and tear him apart, and instead let his good sense and his real/not-real protectors (I really want to call them his Dead People Posse, but I fear that might be disrespectful) hold him back. He's a smart kid, but more importantly he's a wise kid - Harry's problem was that he never took even half a second to think, "Wait - will this make things worse??" Teddy has the ability to look at things through multiple lenses at the same time, even in the worst situations. Go, Teddy. Go go go.

Also, I am madly excited about the in-between of the Floo Network. It's a lot more sparkly than the in-between of King's Cross. :)
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: December 12th, 2007 05:06 pm (UTC) (Link)
Disrespectful? Nah. I think Teddy's DPP need badges, and maybe long dusters and cowboy hats. ;p (Why not? He's given them an island. They could have an old west town as well. The afterlife is one big Holodeck, I think. At least in Teddy's imagination. Actually, that's sort of a fun way to think of the afterlife--you get the world that the people you leave behind imagine for you. So nice, beloved people would get sweet island paradises, and not so nice ones... well.)
From: (Anonymous) Date: December 12th, 2007 03:39 pm (UTC) (Link)
The question about sociopathic personalities is are they really incapable of understanding what other people feel and sure they must be faking it, or are they just heavily invested in not believing any of that stuff can be real? Just one of those questions I find myself asking about Greyback.

Of course, the things I'd like to _say_ to Greyback are a bit different and probably not the things Teddy would ever say. Deleting the obscenities . . . well, I would like to point out to Greyback that he was such a washout as a wizard and a human being that he couldn't even _survive_ without getting himself made into a werewolf - a curse that comes with a complete instruction manual to let the person under it know how to hunt and scratch fleas, two of the many things Greyback never figured out how to do on his own.

If the werewolf curse is a real curse, something made by a wizard or witch ages back that got out of hand (and what an idiot to make a curse like that in the first place), it might be worth pointint out to Greyback that it's lucky for him whoever made it was smarter than he'll ever be. It's no wonder Greyback gave up ever doing anything _himself_ and had to use _someone else's magic_ to be something other than an illiterate wino with really bad tooth decay.

Sorry, getting really rude there even if it is only to a fictional character. Since I can't help Teddy by hitting Greyback with a two by four from behind, I had to do something.

Ellen
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: December 12th, 2007 05:08 pm (UTC) (Link)
Hee, I love your conversations with fictional characters!

I think that if you chased lycanthropy back far enough, it would end up a curse by a wizard (patient zero), either on someone else, or a botched experiment on himself.
From: (Anonymous) Date: December 12th, 2007 04:01 pm (UTC) (Link)

Fantastic Tension

Loving it Fern, just loving it.

And have you noticed how comments mushroom when you ratchet up the tension? ;)

Sara Libby

PS: Best of luck with your move.
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: December 12th, 2007 05:09 pm (UTC) (Link)

Re: Fantastic Tension

I've noticed. It feeds the whole cliffhanger addiction, of course.

Thanks. Got the kitty's health papers in order, and now I'm just packing like whoa.
From: (Anonymous) Date: December 12th, 2007 05:01 pm (UTC) (Link)
Arghllll!
Oh, Teddy! *hugs him* Greyback is such a sick bastard, i want to strangle him personally. (Can I at least beat him with a bamboo stick when Teddy is done with him?)
The cat has had the sense to hide today, so instead I have fingerail marks on my face.

I had fun telling my colleagues about the knives scene, though (without names, so as not to spoil them) - I always tell them stories as we work. Much "ewww!" ing was so be heard.

~Hermione Stranger~
~
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: December 12th, 2007 05:10 pm (UTC) (Link)
Feel free to imagine all the bamboo sticks in the world hitting him repeatedly.
(no subject) - (Anonymous) - Expand
From: kobegrace Date: December 12th, 2007 07:50 pm (UTC) (Link)
Hmm. This awesome chapter has made me super-dee-duper hungry.

Barbecued Greyback, anyone?
ada_the_mental From: ada_the_mental Date: December 12th, 2007 08:50 pm (UTC) (Link)

Greyback Roast! With curry! Sounds deliciously didgusting!!!

Can't wait to see that! I didn't think I could end up hating him even more. JUST DIE ALREADY, MAN!

Three huge cheers for Teddy not being your average brainless Gryffindor and not letting Greyback manipulate him in doing something Harry would do stupid!
And morphing Remus's face is about the epitome of poetic justice.

Bet your mum got a good lesson in how delicate and saintly he was. Sure didn't take him long to sprog her up, did it? And as soon as he'd got enough of what he wanted, he scarpered."

OK, exactly how did the git find out about that?
torturedbabycow From: torturedbabycow Date: December 13th, 2007 02:20 am (UTC) (Link)

Re: Greyback Roast! With curry! Sounds deliciously didgusting!!!

The funny thing is that it actually took ages for Remus to "sprog her up," if you look at how very long they were dancing around that whole relationship business. Fern has been good enough to write us bookfuls of non-sprogging Remus/Tonks action. (Speaking of which, OMG(Greyback)BBQ! I am hanging on the edge of my seat waiting for the next installment of ABSOLUTE WIN.)
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