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Spewing out too many words since November 2003
fernwithy
fernwithy
Teddy Lupin and the Daedalus Maze, Chapter Twelve: Slippage, pt. 1
After a pretty major blow-up with Harry on the subject of the Resurrection Stone, Teddy manages to do something even dumber--in his present state of mind, he goes into the Maze, which shows him Harry's death, then takes him to his parents'--but instead of watching it play through, he grabs the Guide (Bellatrix, at this point) and starts to throttle her. Things in the Maze aren't meant to be touched. Teddy is hurt by touching it, but continues to hold on until the Maze goes white and kicks him out. He finds himself on the floor of his room, the Maze--cracked--a bit away. He can't get up, so he goes to sleep on the floor, with Checkmate curled up on his chest.

Table of Contents and Summary So Far




Teddy dreamed disjointedly, sometimes finding himself in the paths of the Maze, sometimes in his childhood at Granny's and Uncle Harry's, sometimes adrift on the ocean, with only a plank from Tirza's ship to keep him afloat. For a long time, he seemed to be living the life he'd imagined for himself in the Shrieking Shack, but he was having an argument with Dad about his marks in Muggle Studies, and his sister Julia kept trying to steal things from his room. On her last foray, he grabbed her in a headlock, and when she turned, she'd become Bellatrix, and he escaped the dream just before she stabbed him again. At some point during the night, the line between dreams and wakefulness was so thin that he could have sworn that Sirius, in his dog form as Padfoot, was gamboling around his room.

Even through his dreams, he was aware of the cold floor beneath him, and the draft from the open window. He felt Checkmate get up and move away, probably looking for warmer quarters, but couldn't seem to wake up to get his blanket.

There was a grayish red tint in the world when he heard voices. At first, he thought they were in his dream, but they were too far away for that.

"--probably just sleeping in, it's Sunday," a girl's voice said, and Teddy recognized the Scottish twist in the words. Ruthless.

The next voice was Victoire's. "He's almost always up for breakfast, Ruth."

There was a pause, then Ruthless said, "Not always. After Greyback--" She stopped talking, then called, "Lupin, are you in there?"

Teddy tried to answer, but only managed a weak sort of gag. He got his eyes open. By the sunlight, it was mid-morning.

"Teddy!"

He flung his arm out and hit his chair, which skittered a few inches and crashed into his desk, sending a pile of books toppling off the corner.

"Stand back," Ruthless said outside, then called, "Lupin, you'd best not be naked!"

The door blew in with a crash, then Victoire ran in. "Teddy, what happened?"

He couldn't very well answer--even if he could find his voice, he wasn't sure.

"You didn't sleep here with the bloody window open, did you?" Ruthless asked. "Dammit, Teddy, it's almost Halloween."

"He's really sick," Victoire said.

Ruthless squatted down beside him and put her fingers on either side of his chin. She pointed her wand at his face, and the world was suddenly bright.

"I'm getting Madam Pomfrey," Ruthless said. "You stay here and get him warmed up."

Victoire nodded. "I'll get a blanket."

She set him down gently as Ruthless ran out. A moment later, she came back with the quilt from his bed and wrapped it around him tightly. Another set of footsteps came in, and Teddy managed to glance up enough to spot Marie, who looked more like a frightened five year old than the Princess of Gryffindor.

"Marie," Victoire said, "do you know which dormitory I'm in?"

She nodded.

"Get the blue and white plant by my bed and bring it back here."

"What's wrong with Teddy?"

"I don't know. Ruth Scrimgeour's gone for Madam Pomfrey. Just get the plant."

Marie scurried out.

Victoire maneuvered Teddy's head into her lap and combed his hair with her fingers. "You'll be all right," she said. "The aethracandia will get your head clear. It always works."

Marie returned in what seemed only seconds, but must have been at least a few minutes, and Teddy saw a flash of blue and white as something was thrust under his nose. The world was full of a scent like sunlight on freshly turned earth, with delicate green things just starting to grow in it. There was even a hint of the sea. It smelled like Shell Cottage.

Teddy blinked as feeling started to seep back into his mind. "What time is it?" he asked.

"What time..." Marie shook her head. "Who cares what time it is?"

"It's ten-thirty," Victoire said. "What happened?"

"I don't know," Teddy said. "Could you help me sit up?"

"Not until Madam Pomfrey says it's all right." She glanced down. "Your leg is swollen."

Teddy made a great effort to lift his head. She was right--his left ankle looked like someone had injected Swelling Solution straight into the bone. It throbbed distantly, and he remembered blundering down the path in the forest, catching it on a tree root, being thrown into the clearing... but then it was the Maze again, and Narcissa was waiting for him there. He lowered his head back into Victoire's lap. Marie sat down beside him and took his hand, petting it like it was a stray kitten she'd found somewhere.

There was a commotion somewhere below, and then Ruthless was back, looking winded, with Madam Pomfrey, Professor Longbottom, and Uncle Harry. Teddy looked away.

Madam Pomfrey Conjured a stretcher and Levitated Teddy onto it, then began to examine him. "Nasty sprained ankle, and I think there might be a chipped bone in the foot... spell damage... Mr. Lupin, what were you doing?"

He didn't answer.

She looked over her shoulder. "Professor Longbottom, Mr. Potter, girls--perhaps you'd care to let me examine my patient in private?"

Teddy thought they might not obey her--she was just the school nurse, after all, and they were war heroes who decided what was all right for everyone else--but they went quietly enough.

"What were you doing?" Madam Pomfrey asked when they were gone. "And don't be embarrassed. Trust me, nothing shocks me after forty years at this school."

Teddy frowned, his head clearing more by the second. "I wasn't doing anything embarrassing."

"Well, let's have it, then."

"I don't know," Teddy said. "I was just..." He nodded toward the Maze, not wanting to tell her he'd tried to murder his long dead great aunt. "I just... I brushed against something I should have steered clear of. It's a Divination tool," he added when he saw her blank look. "It showed me something, and I'm not supposed to touch anything I see, but I must have brushed it."

She didn't look like she believed a word of it, but he supposed she guessed enough to do her job, because she started a string of diagnostic spells without asking any more questions.

"Well," she said when she finished, "we'll get you fixed up, but I think I'll need you in the hospital wing for a few days at least. Whoever brought the aethracandia--"

"Victoire."

"--was exactly right. We just need to get your system cleared of whatever mischief got into it." She twisted her wand absently, and a vial of blue potion appeared. Teddy drank it while she Summoned together his dressing gown, pajamas, and toothbrush. "I'll have your Uncle Harry meet us down there--"

"No."

She stopped. "What?"

"I don't want him."

"I take it back. I can still be shocked." She shook her head. "It's not my business," she muttered. "Mad, all of you, really."

Continuing to mumble in this vein, she Levitated him downstairs on the stretcher, signaling to Uncle Harry to stay away. From the corner of his eye, Teddy saw him draw back. He looked very tired and pale.

The hospital wing was empty when they got there, and she transferred him to a bed at the far end, in a patch of sunlight beneath a window. Victoire's plant, which Madam Pomfrey had apparently appropriated, landed on the bed stand with a thump. She started doing Healing spells, and Teddy drifted off again, into the gray, misty world of some far off seashore. He was dimly aware of his trainers being pulled off and his ankle Healed, and of being moved around to remove his dirty clothes from yesterday and replace them with his pajamas, but he supposed there had been something in the potion that made him sleepy. The smell of the aethracandia filled his mind and calmed him, and he finally fell into a more normal sort of sleep. He awoke in the early afternoon to find Uncle Harry sitting by his bed. They didn't talk, and Teddy drifted back to sleep. Later on, the chair was empty.

Donzo, Corky, Maurice, and Frankie brought him dinner in the early afternoon, and by then, his mind was almost entirely clear, though he still felt like he had weights tied to him. "We figured we'd best bring it down quickly," Donzo said. "Before Jane and Ruthless wasted all night arguing about which one of them was going to bring you food, and you starved to death waiting."

Teddy tried to remember why Jane would be bringing him something, then came up with a handful of kisses yesterday. That had been nice. He would have to make a point of seeing Jane soon.

Corky and Maurice told him that Jane had been quite alarming after Hogsmeade yesterday, and they were afraid that Honoria may have got quite a scoop from her. Corky promised to try not to let her publish any of it. Maurice offered to Curse her to avoid it. After Teddy finished eating, Corky, Maurice, and Donzo left. Frankie remained. He hadn't spoken much.

"Is it that bloody thing of Mum's?" he asked quietly when they were gone.

Teddy nodded.

"I hate the Department of Mysteries."

"It was my fault," Teddy said. "I did what she told me not to. They'll probably never take me now."

"Here's hoping." Frankie shrugged, then reached into his book bag. He pulled out a very thin book. "Here--have a look. I finished."

"Finished?"

"That story you wrote for James. I said I was going to make a proper book of it. Have a look. I got Franklin Driscoll to draw pictures. Paid him a few Galleons, which is more than he gets for that cartoon he does in the Charmer. I think it looks smart. I like the story, too. I liked it when Sir Ryan solved the riddle to get the cure for the plague. Not sure about the cats, but I guess that's just for James."

"Mostly." Teddy took the book and flipped through it. It looked very professional, and it seemed odd to see words he'd scribbled on the back of Ancient Runes assignments done up like they were a real book. Franklin had drawn Sirius--Sir Ryan--as a dashing adventurer with a sword at his side. Teddy thought he might just introduce that sword into the next story--then remembered that James was Uncle Harry's son, and after last night, Uncle Harry might not want Teddy writing to him. He closed the book. "Thanks, Frankie."

"Are you going to tell me what's going on?"

Teddy shrank back into the pillows, wanting to disappear.

Frankie took off his glasses and rubbed his nose. "You can, you know. Your godfather was looking all over for you last night. He had Mrs. Longbottom bring him to Hufflepuff to see if you'd come to see me. I think he had Professor Morse go up to Ravenclaw."

"Who went to Slytherin?"

"Corky ran into him upstairs and offered." Frankie sighed. "I guess someone saw the light in your room, because they stopped looking. I thought he'd have gone up to see you."

"We had a fight," Teddy said.

Frankie didn't look surprised. "Well... be careful, Lupin. All right?"

Teddy nodded.

After Frankie left, he went back to sleep. The weight on his arms and legs seemed to be lifting, but he was tired all the way to his bones. He could hear the school moving around him, sometimes so close that it didn't even seem to be beyond the walls of the hospital wing. Boys laughed quietly, seeming to be just further down the ward. He heard the tap of footsteps and looked up to see a great stag standing at the end of his bed, glowing white in the moonlight.

He blinked at it drowsily and said, "Leave me alone, Uncle Harry," then rolled over went back to sleep. The stag was gone the next time he looked.
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From: kobegrace Date: June 2nd, 2008 05:36 pm (UTC) (Link)
Once again: poor, poor Uncle Harry. This was so sad, Fern. I'm quite teary. *sniffs*
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: June 2nd, 2008 06:03 pm (UTC) (Link)
I'm really feeling guilty about doing this to Harry. Sorry, Harry! It'll work out in the end, I promise. Just read the epilogue, everything's fine...
From: (Anonymous) Date: June 2nd, 2008 05:38 pm (UTC) (Link)

Am I first?

Okay so I haven't ever commented before, but I've read I think almost all of your stories up to this point and all I can say is... WOW! I love your Shades verse and also all of Teddy's stories as well. I really loved this one, and I can't wait for your next installment! Poor Harry... I know a lot of people have been saying that, but in this one at the very end when Teddy said, "Leave me alone, Uncle Harry," That one hit me hard! Thank you so much, it's so fun reading this story!

bkwrmgrl
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: June 2nd, 2008 06:04 pm (UTC) (Link)

Re: Am I first?

Thanks for dropping in! Teddy's really being a little emo-snot here, but he'll get over it. I hope. Soon.
thornyrose42 From: thornyrose42 Date: June 2nd, 2008 05:58 pm (UTC) (Link)
Argh.

I think I have a problem, when ever anything like this happens, no matter how well I understand the fact that in order for a story to have substance there has to be conflict, I just want everyone to sit down in some comfy chairs somewhere and talk it all out. Possibly fluffy bunnies would be involved.

But, since taht blatently isn;t going to happen anytime soon I will just have to content myself with wallowing in the dreadful chasm that has opened up between them. \"Leave me alone, Uncle Harry,\" /Teddy/ how could you?

I didn\'t notice it at the time but there was a very nice mirroring between Remus and Teddy in the whole they always get up before breakfast except when tehy don\'t thing. Ruthless\'s comment sparked off that particular memory of Patient L.

Teddy thought they might not obey her--she was just the school nurse, after all, and they were war heroes who decided what was all right for everyone else--but they went quietly enough.

Nice bit of teenage angst there Teddy, well done you.
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: June 2nd, 2008 06:05 pm (UTC) (Link)
I'm the same way. Bring on the bunnies, man. I met a cute one named Oreo the other day; Oreo can hop in and cheer everyone up. Barring that, my cat's pretty good at it.

I hadn't thought about that from "Patient L," but you're right, that works in context.
From: glynngriffiths Date: June 2nd, 2008 06:29 pm (UTC) (Link)
Despite the tremendous amounts of well articulated and on-point teenage angst, you can still make me giggle: "We figured we'd best bring it down quickly," Donzo said. "Before Jane and Ruthless wasted all night arguing about which one of them was going to bring you food, and you starved to death waiting." :)

But poor Harry! And poor Teddy, too, even though he's being a snot. Teenage prerogative, I guess.
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: June 3rd, 2008 12:09 am (UTC) (Link)
Inevitable teendom.

Poor Jane. She had a great date, but turns out to rank rather low on the priority scale.
willowbough From: willowbough Date: June 2nd, 2008 06:47 pm (UTC) (Link)
Glad to see Teddy's support system kicking in for him--he is definitely fortunate in his friends. Ah, Harry--not easy being the authority figure in the life of a 15-year-old boy having a bad attack of the emos. I wonder if he's getting flashbacks to his own adolescent angst in OoTP and wincing in dread over what might be coming next.

Why do I think Madam Pomfrey is all too used to having students not tell her the whole story behind their injuries?
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: June 3rd, 2008 12:11 am (UTC) (Link)
I think Harry may go to Dumbledore's tomb and apologize profusely for his fifteen-year-old self.

Madam Pomfrey never did seem to ask for explanations from Harry. I'll bet she's gotten to be a good guesser over the years, though.
milaya36 From: milaya36 Date: June 2nd, 2008 06:58 pm (UTC) (Link)
You're a jerk, Teddy.

Sorry about that. I just got caught up on the last post, and unlike most of your commenters, I think I'm pretty firmly in Uncle Harry's camp in this one, even with the Remus and Tonks comment he made (Teddy deserved it - blaming the war deaths on Harry? That's pretty damn awful). On the plus side, I'm sure he'll get over it and become endearing again; teenagers!

Keep up the good work; the past few installments have been fantastic!
From: (Anonymous) Date: June 2nd, 2008 07:20 pm (UTC) (Link)
Seconded! I really hope Teddy eventually realizes just how beyond the pale his comments were.

This is gripping stuff; the next section can't come quick enough. Nice work Fern.
(no subject) - (Anonymous) - Expand
renesears From: renesears Date: June 2nd, 2008 07:05 pm (UTC) (Link)
I take it back. I can still be shocked.

Hee hee. Madame Pomfrey FTW. :)

Poor Harry. Man, I really feel for him. That last 2 lines... ouch. I'm all for the fluffy bunny solution myself, but as it's not totally likely, I can't wait to see what you do with it.
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: June 3rd, 2008 12:14 am (UTC) (Link)
Maybe I'll write a fluffy bunny short sometime before I'm finished here, just to remind myself that they all end up happy.
amamama From: amamama Date: June 2nd, 2008 07:08 pm (UTC) (Link)
Well, you promised he'd get up of the floor, but this wasn't on his own! *pouts* Though it did of course add loads more drama than him staggering to his feet. And it showed the seriousness of touching stuff in the Maze. Unsurprisingly, Frankie is not chuffed about the whole DoM, and of Teddy's friends I think he's the one who's got the best idea of what happened. But how long will it take Teddy to forgive himself and Harry, and not only allow Harry to get close again, but also accept that he's worthy of recieving Harry's love? Somehow it feels like he's sinking into a pit of self-pity and feeling unworthy. Which is (at least partly) what being an emo teen is all about, isn't it? Poor, poor Harry, though. Worried out of his mind and only getting "Leave me alone" in return... *hugs Harry* *considers* *hugs Teddy too*

Cheers!
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: June 3rd, 2008 12:15 am (UTC) (Link)
But how long will it take Teddy to forgive himself and Harry, and not only allow Harry to get close again, but also accept that he's worthy of recieving Harry's love?

I think that may be the root of it. The argument is likely to blow over faster than Teddy's feelings of guilt over it.
allie_meril From: allie_meril Date: June 2nd, 2008 07:40 pm (UTC) (Link)
Oh, poor Harry! I'm very much on his side here.

And ooo, Teddy, you little teenage brat! Not saying that there's not serious issues for him, but... Grrr. He's being crazy and he needs a good shake. He's young, and he wasn't there, so he just doesn't get How Things Were during the war for Harry.

The stag was gone the next time he looked. :(

I opine for the fluffy bunnies solution that someone proposed above.
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: June 3rd, 2008 12:16 am (UTC) (Link)
He's being crazy and he needs a good shake

Mm-hmm. Yup, that's about the sum of it. Sounds like some other Lupin I recall. ;p
From: (Anonymous) Date: June 2nd, 2008 08:09 pm (UTC) (Link)

m

as much as harry's in the right, i can't judge teddy to harshly because who wouldn't jump at the chance to get even a part of someone back? obviously, once you think it through it's a bad idea, but basically as annoying as teddy's being, the situation is just so horrible in and of itself.
so the maze is physically dangerous as well as mentally. it didn't hit quite so hard before. but as dangerous as it is, it's a really neat idea. how did you come up with it?
interesting how the line between the living and the dead is blurring not just in dreams now.
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: June 3rd, 2008 12:17 am (UTC) (Link)

Re: m

it didn't hit quite so hard before.

Last time, he did just brush something in the Maze, and Maddie pulled him back. This time, the Maze itself had to throw him out.
hermia7 From: hermia7 Date: June 2nd, 2008 08:24 pm (UTC) (Link)
Ergh.

This and the fight itself--very well done. Painful, but well done. Funny, I'm focused more on the maze than the fight, because I know the fight will resolve eventually, since Teddy does somewhere have a head on his shoulders. I am waiting for Teddy to have a conversation with Maddie, though I know there must be more maze-related drama to come since I'd guess we're at the midpoint, if that, right?

Nitpicks: Teddy thought they might not obey her--she was just the school nurse, after all, and they were war heroes who decided what was all right for everyone else--but they went quietly enough.
I get where you're going with that--he remembers what happened and is going to dwell on it as much as teenagerishly possible--but something about the phrasing didn't flow as smoothly as you usually do.

Also I think you can't hear tapping feet from a patronus?
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: June 3rd, 2008 12:19 am (UTC) (Link)
I know there must be more maze-related drama to come since I'd guess we're at the midpoint, if that, right?

Oh, yes. There is definitely more Maze drama to come. In a sense, the Maze drama is just warming up.

Also I think you can't hear tapping feet from a patronus?

:whistles innocently:

Edited at 2008-06-03 12:20 am (UTC)
insixeighttime From: insixeighttime Date: June 2nd, 2008 08:25 pm (UTC) (Link)
So as Lollapulizer is off being working at a no-internet access camp, I am on Fern/Teddy-duty, printing out the installments and snail-mailing them to her. Won't she be excited for two at once! (We even made some joke about her mailing comments back to me, but not sure if that will happen.)

I love it as well, and feel bad for not commenting as much as I ought, but really I just love it. It was very odd for me to realize the other day how canonical all your teddyverse is in my mind. Well done.
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: June 3rd, 2008 12:22 am (UTC) (Link)
Hope lollapulizer's having a good time at camp!

I'm glad you're liking it--don't worry about the comments. I take what I get and I'm glad of it. :)
carlinpaddy From: carlinpaddy Date: June 2nd, 2008 09:13 pm (UTC) (Link)
The part of Madam Pomphrey getting shocked was great, and Harry sending his patronus to check on Teddy was wonderful, even if I wish Teddy would calm down enough to respond nicely to it. I would like to see if the patronus could tell Harry what was going on. You know, they can send messages, can they receive them? I just read a fic where Harry had a tiny pet snake that he'd place on people and when he got it back it would tell him all it saw. If his patronus was a tiny snake could it spy for him too, or should he stick to the live snake? Thank you for a calm Teddy Time before class began.
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: June 3rd, 2008 12:25 am (UTC) (Link)
I'm not very clear on what Patronuses can and can't do, largely because their limit seems to be "whatever the story needs them to do just now." ;)
wotcher_wombat From: wotcher_wombat Date: June 2nd, 2008 09:16 pm (UTC) (Link)
Beautiful work!

I particularly love Victoire here. I have a feeling I know what would turn up in Teddy's Amortentia!

I also liked the interaction between Teddy and Frankie, especially how Frankie immediately knows it's something to do with the Department of Mysteries.
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: June 3rd, 2008 12:28 am (UTC) (Link)
I think Teddy's Amortentia might smell entirely like aethracandia. :)
From: (Anonymous) Date: June 2nd, 2008 10:27 pm (UTC) (Link)
Teddy thought he might just introduce that sword into the next story--then remembered that James was Uncle Harry's son, and after last night, Uncle Harry might not want Teddy writing to him.

Oh Teddy, Uncle Harry loves you beyond your wildest imaginings and will always want you writing to (and with) James.

This was definitely the point where I almost teared up. Teddy's just so Harry here, as Harry used to feel towards the Weasley's when he felt guilty and knew he was being a brat. After so much Remus and Tonks coming out of Teddy, it's nice to see the man who helped raise him in there somewhere.

This is really beautiful Fern.

-Sqveege
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: June 3rd, 2008 12:30 am (UTC) (Link)
There is a lot of Harry in Teddy. They express themselves differently, and there are some places where they sharply break off from each other, but I think Teddy's probably picked up Harry's over-developed conscience on a lot of things.
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