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First fic batch - The Phantom Librarian
Spewing out too many words since November 2003
fernwithy
fernwithy
First fic batch
I'd best get started right off!

First meeting between McGonagall and Sirius after Azkaban. Thanks!
for elendiari22, seconded by alkari and sep12

-----
Minerva shrank the food down to a manageable size, and put it into a small handbag, wondering why on Earth Albus Dumbledore hadn't thought to ask this of her earlier. Absurd, letting a man live on rats and food scoured from the tables by third year students! Minerva had lived on her share of rats in Germany, during the war, but even as a cat, she'd never developed a taste for them--stringy, with the bitter undertaste of the rubbish they lived on. She wouldn't ask a real dog to do that, let alone an Animagus. Had Dumbledore thought she would refuse to see reason on the subject of Sirius Black?

She paused at the gate, and supposed it was possible. When she'd first been told what had happened to James Potter, and to Peter Pettigrew (supposedly), not to mention a dozen Muggles on the street, she'd been hurt and angry. She'd tried to tell herself that there were things she should have seen. She'd blown up little peccadilloes over the years, and let Severus remind her frequently of Sirius's less than charming side as a child. Yes, it was possible that Dumbledore had thought she'd refuse to hear the truth.

All the more reason to prove that she'd heard it now.

She glanced around, then Transfigured the handbag--shrunken food included--into a leather collar, which she strapped around her neck. A moment later, she transformed, and began to make her way across the cold winter earth toward the cave beyond Hogsmeade. It wasn't charmed, but it was hard to see, and Dumbledore had used it during the war to hide needed supplies. It was a long walk, but as a cat, she always felt younger and stronger, and the trip was almost too fast.

Another point about being in her Animagus form was that it had an instinctive recognition of things that weren't as they seemed, and when the huge black dog ran out from the woods and hovered in front of the cave, she wasn't fooled. She transformed and said, "Hello, Mr. Black."

The dog looked up at her warily.

She took the "collar" off and pulled her handbag from it. "The Headmaster asked if I'd bring you some food. You really oughtn't involve Harry in that--quite a lot of the staff noticed him gathering it, and I was forced to tell them that I believed there was an illegal picnic in the mountains. If he does it again, I shall have to reveal a cabin where I went as a girl, and I would prefer not to do so, as it could, in the future, prove useful. You may even make use of it yourself, as I doubt the friend with whom I shared that secret would object."

The dog shook itself out and turned to the cave. It looked over its shoulder and gestured her inside. She followed.

There was a brief line of darkness, where the cave shadows made her blind, then she went around a bend and saw the light of a small campfire. Clothes were strewn carelessly about, and piles of old newspapers surrounded low rocks that probably served as furniture.

In the midst of this was a gaunt man with long black hair and sunken grey eyes. Minerva had no problem recogizing him--it was as though the boy who'd once sat in her classroom, starved for attention and forced out onto a metaphorical ice floe by his family had manifested himself in physical form. He was looking at her miserably.

She found a flat rock and laid out the shrunken food, undoing the Charms on it as she spoke. "I'm sure you remember how to do a Refrigeration Charm," she said. "Not that you need it here, it's like a tomb."

"I'll put more wood on the fire," Sirius said, the first words he'd spoken to her in thirteen years. "I don't really notice the cold anymore." He rummaged behind a rock and threw a few more sticks onto the campfire. "I was worried about the smoke getting out," he said. "So I've been capturing it and Transfiguring it." He flicked his wand, and a ball of smoke near the top of the cave broke off. Sirius Levitated it over to the far wall, turned his wrist quickly, and another rock appeared. "They're not very solid. Every now and then, I break them up and scatter them around outside."

"That's quite good," Minerva said. "Full marks."

They caught one another's eye, and the laughter began. It was the last thing Minerva had expected--that this broken man, dressed in rags, still held the boy inside, just as the boy had once held this man inside. The boy had always been able to penetrate her defenses and make her laugh in class despite her best efforts not to, and as they wiled away the rainy March afternoon, the boy became more visible with each joke and each memory. As the sun went down, he led her to the cave entrance, and to her utter surprise, hugged her.

"If only I'd met a girl like you," he said, with mock wistfulness. "I'd have never gone wrong."

"Yes, I'm quite sure you'd have been very tame and well-behaved," Minerva said, then sighed. "I'd best go. Have a care, Sirius. Hogsmeade is full of gossips."

"I know." He dipped her melodramically, straining her hips. "They'll find out about us, I'm sure..."

"Oh, pshaw," Minerva said, extracting herself. "You were always an odd boy."

"Just one with fine taste in women." He fluttered his hand over his heart, and looked rather disturbingly like his uncle Alphard for a moment.

Minerva just nodded, turned into a cat, and left.





James telling Ruth about his first DADA lesson as a teacher.
for rosathome

-----
The flat in Diagon Alley was a disaster zone, strewn with boxes and furniture haphazardly thrown around while Ruth had done intensive cleaning spells. There was no reason for it--the wedding was to take place at Christmas hols, and Ruth wouldn't actually be moving out until then, though she'd gone out to Hogwarts for the Sorting Feast last night so she could be introduced--but she'd felt a need to get everything in motion, to start packing up and make a definite statement on the matter. Otherwise, she might start thinking about it too carefully, and talk herself out of marrying a man eight years her junior who still had spots on his cheeks when he forgot the bubotuber potion.

She didn't want to give herself any chance of doing that. It would mean missing, among other things, the manic flow of words coming out of his mouth now, or the slightly crazed look in his eyes, or the hair that was mussed terribly because he kept running his hands through it in his excitement.

"...and I was so nervous! I never thought I'd be nervous about anything at Hogwarts, but I was. What if I cocked it up? But I didn't. I just went in there and I started talking. 'Hullo, I'm Professor Potter.' I was waiting for them to start laughing at that. Who did I think I was kidding, right? My cousin Lance was in my first class. He's a third year. I figured he'd... well, I've camped out with him. I used to take him--and Muriel--out into the woods and tell them scary stories, and I reckoned he might say something about how maybe I was just telling them a story, or would say something embarrassing, but he didn't, he even called me 'Professor.' How do you like that? Professor Potter." He stopped, dazed. "Professor Potter. I like it. I can't believe how much I like it."

Ruth laughed and Summoned a glass of mulled mead. "I noticed."

He sat down on the far end of the sofa. "This is it, Ruth. I thought I was doing it as something to do until the books started to pay, but I think I want to keep doing it, no matter what happens with the books. Would you mind being married to a teacher in fifty years?"

"I think I can live with it."

He grinned broadly, leaned over, and kissed her. "I'm sorry, I haven't even asked what your day was like."

"That's because you know what my day was like. You've had my day for the last three years. It's the same as ever. No new cases. How did the class go after Lance remembered to call you 'Professor'? And who else did you have? Have you had Lily yet?"

"No, I have seventh years tomorrow." He shuddered. "That'll be a test." He shook off the momentary concern, then stood up again and began to walk around, brimming with directionless energy. "So I had the third years first. Third year is larger dark creatures. So after the introductions, I brought out our old friend from Antarctica--"

"You brought the Ice Imp?"

"Well, Roger's been watching it for me, anyway, so I thought it would be fun. Not too threatening, without any oceans to drown someone in." He came back to the sofa and perched on the arm beside her. "There's one of the girls there, I don't know the family, her name's Alissa Rowe, she got the counter-spells right off, and actually got the Imp to do its own ice cage. Good thinking--I can't wait to see what she does next year..."

"Next year?"

"Yeah. Fourth year, I'm going to steal that assignment that Robards tried a few times, give them the cold cases and see how they do."

"He did that with fifth years."

"I know, which is why half the blokes in my class were worried that they hadn't done enough for O.W.L.s. I think I'll do standard review in fifth year, make sure everyone's confident. The better students, I'll turn loose on some independent study, or... I don't know, do you think the Division could use some student minds on anything? Probably not, but I'll ask Dad..."

Ruth let it wash over her--his energy, his excitement, his happiness--as he went on, occasionally getting up again to move about, more and more frequently coming to his perch beside her, burying his hands in her hair, rubbing her neck and shoulders. She invited him to stay for the night (it wouldn't be the first time he had done so, though they'd always covered it up before), but he didn't accept, as the teachers all had some sort of party planned in the greenhouses.

"You should come up," he said. "I mean, you couldn't stay--Hogwarts rules--but everyone would love to see you. Neville said he's been saving up cradle-robbing jokes."

"There's a selling point."

"We're going to get you desensitized to the idea." He winked. "Come on, what do you say?"

Ruth looked around her cluttered, unlived-in flat, then at James's broad smile.

She rolled her eyes and followed him out.




Teddy finally realising what Victoire means to him and going on their first date? Or maybe Bill's reaction to their relationship?
for amamama

[I did the story where Teddy realizes what Victoire means to him--Marauder's Roost--so I'll do the latter... but before Teddy and Victoire know what's going on. :)]
----
"Victoire went on a date!" Aimee announced, bursting out of her room and screaming at the top of her voice, which was actually hard to discern from the same voice she'd been using for the last twenty minutes of a full-blown yelling fight with Victoire, the latest round in a tiff that had been going on since they'd got home for Easter hols. "She went on a date in Hogsmeade! Before O.W.L.s!"

"You snitch!"

There was a high-pitched squeal, but Bill was already on his way up the stairs. He just quickened his pace. Victoire had a handful of Aimee's hair and was giving it a healthy yank. At the moment, she quite resembled Fleur's grandmother Valeska.

"Snitch-snitch-snitch!"

"It was a date! And you went out with him after! You're not allowed!"

"Enough," Bill said, putting a hand on each of their shoulders and pushing them apart. "Aimee, your sister's right--you're being a snitch to win an argument."

"But--"

"Go peel potatoes for your mother. Now."

Aimee grumbled her way off, and Victoire started to go back into the room, looking vindicated.

Bill pulled her back. "Regardless of Aimee's snitching," he said, "is that true?"

"Well, I..." She fumbled for anything to say, then finally muttered, "It was just Teddy, and he won't be there after I take O.W.L.s, so it doesn't count, and besides, it was a disaster, so I don't need any more punishments."

"Nice try," Bill said, then his mind processed what she'd said. "Teddy? Teddy Lupin?"

"Yes, exactly, and it was a disaster. You know Teddy. If it's not Ruthless, it's complete wreckage."

Bill tried to process this--the idea that a boy who had sat at his table, had gone camping (overnight, no less!) with Victoire, had nearly wrecked the new addition to the house before it was properly started, whose parents had declared their love for one another as Bill lay in the Hogwarts hospital wing with his face covered in ointment, had gone out with his daughter, had apparently made a "wreckage" of it, and was a "disaster."

Moreover, he was a boy who knew the rules--Bill had trusted him to make sure Victoire followed the rules. He shook his head and pulled Victoire down the hall, to the little office Fleur used to keep the household accounts and run her small travel business. He moved a stack of brochures that featured cheerfully waving older witches in exotic locations, and sat down at Fleur's desk. He pointed Victoire to the other chair. "You know the rules. So does Teddy."

"I know, but..."

Bill tried to raise his eyebrows, made a mess of it (the scar tissue always made that one grotesque), and settled for spreading his hands wide to express skepticism and prompt her to keep going.

"Well..." Victoire started, but failed to follow up. She gnawed on her lip, then finally said, "Teddy said we shouldn't, it wasn't his fault, I talked him into it."

Bill continued to wait, but mentally started formulating new rules for visits from Teddy Lupin, who was apparently unable to say no to a girl with a crush--something Bill had suspected before, but never in regard to Victoire, who he assumed was in a golden circle of protection by virtue of being family.

"But it really was a disaster, it's not going to happen again. We didn't even kiss!" Victoire stared out the window glumly, as if this were the main issue. "We just went to Madam Puddifoot's, and it was awful, we couldn't think of anything to talk about, and then we hardly talked at all until we broke up, but now we're friends again, so please don't be angry." She looked up at him, her face frighteningly serious.

"You both knew the rules," Bill said again.

"But he'll be gone after O.W.L.s. We'd never have had a chance otherwise. I had to find out."

This presented something of a problem, in that Bill could see her point of view quite clearly, and was tempted to say, "Oh, I see, that's all right, then." That wouldn't be entirely helpful in maintaining discipline. Next time, it would be Story, because he'd be taking different N.E.W.T.s and they'd have to stop their war because they were busy. Then maybe Kirk Scrimgeour, because one never knew, he might quit after O.W.L.s. The next might be suffering from an incurable Curse, or about to move to outer Mongolia.

But none of those things will happen, because none of those boys are Teddy Lupin.

Something panicked fluttered around in Bill's head. He didn't know where that thought had come from. Victoire was barely sixteen. Surely, that serious look on her face was just teenage moodiness.

She burst into tears. "It was a disaster, Daddy!" she said. "I thought... I had to find out..."

Against his better judgment, Bill just put his arm around her and made soothing noises until the fit passed. His mind continued ticking over the subject. That serious look, the tears, I had to find out...

"Is Teddy as upset about this as you are?" he asked. "Or will I need to break something?"

"Hmm? Oh, no! No, Daddy, it wasn't Teddy's fault at all. He was wonderful. It just... it wasn't what I thought. I don't think it was what he thought, either. We were just stupid to do it. We couldn't think of anything to say at Madam Puddifoot's. I couldn't wait to get home!"

"But you're friends again now."

She nodded encouragingly. "Yes. It just didn't work on a date, but now we're playing cards again, and sitting up in the common room, and I cleaned up his dormitory, and--"

"You what?"

She gave him a look so puzzled that he supposed it really was genuine.

He shook his head. "All right. But stay out of his dormitory unless one of your girlfriends is with you from now on..."
20 comments or Leave a comment
Comments
From: (Anonymous) Date: November 28th, 2008 08:44 pm (UTC) (Link)
Yay!!!! These will be making the next two weeks of school until I go home paradise! YAY YAY YAY!
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: November 28th, 2008 09:04 pm (UTC) (Link)
Glad to help out!
alkari From: alkari Date: November 28th, 2008 08:58 pm (UTC) (Link)
LOL at Bill and Victoire. Victoire was barely sixteen. Surely, that serious look on her face was just teenage moodiness. Ah yes - suddenly lots of things clicking into place.

And that you for Sirius and Minerva - you always do Minerva very well, and I love the way they both spend the afternoon laughing, because Sirius could always get inside her defences. And what a heart-breaking image of him - .. the boy who'd once sat in her classroom, starved for attention and forced out onto a metaphorical ice floe by his family had manifested himself in physical form .

Interesting that you have her knowing about Sirius well before the Third Task, and not between GOF and OotP.
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: November 28th, 2008 09:04 pm (UTC) (Link)
Well, Harry said that she didn't look surprised by the direction, so I figured she probably knew who the large dog was by then! :)
alkari From: alkari Date: November 28th, 2008 09:08 pm (UTC) (Link)
Well, I'm glad Sirius got something to eat for those last few months other than rats and scraps, and whatever Harry sent him!!
lucathia_rykatu From: lucathia_rykatu Date: November 28th, 2008 09:05 pm (UTC) (Link)
All of these made me smile so much! That "full marks" must have been very nostalgic. James was so awesomely excited in the second one. He's really found something he loves.
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: November 28th, 2008 09:09 pm (UTC) (Link)
There's definitely a great moment when you figure out, "Hey, I love doing this!"
From: rosathome Date: November 28th, 2008 09:37 pm (UTC) (Link)
Oh, James and Ruth are so lovely. I can't quite imagine anyone ever being so excited about teaching but it's very sweet that he is. Thank you!
(Deleted comment)
malinbe From: malinbe Date: November 28th, 2008 10:59 pm (UTC) (Link)
I can SO identify myself with James. Can't wait until I get to teach for real.

Oh, and everything else was wonderfull too. Minerva and Sirius were awesome and so sweet... And Bill as an overprotective Dad was so fun... (Also, Aimee stole MY little sister's lines. "MOOOM! Bell has a belly piercing!" Snitch)
marycontraria From: marycontraria Date: November 28th, 2008 11:31 pm (UTC) (Link)
Oh, these are lovely! I am so excited about all of these ficlets. :)
thornyrose42 From: thornyrose42 Date: November 28th, 2008 11:36 pm (UTC) (Link)
I now have that lovely warm glow that comes specifically from reading you Teddyverse and knowing that there will be more coming soon. Talk about the holiday season!

These were all lovely. Especially the James/Ruth one, you definitely made the right call bringing those two together!
rotae From: rotae Date: November 29th, 2008 01:15 am (UTC) (Link)
OMFG. I HEART BILL SO MUCH OMG. LOLOLOL. Awwww, that was just just WONDERFUL. <3

Peace,
Rotae
sep12 From: sep12 Date: November 29th, 2008 03:01 am (UTC) (Link)
"That's quite good," Minerva said. "Full marks."
Oh, Fern, this was so wonderful. It was exactly along the lines I'd been thinking of. I love that Sirius has such affection for McGonagall, and that she obviously has affection for him as well. I lurve it!
Thank you so much!
darth_pipes From: darth_pipes Date: November 29th, 2008 04:24 am (UTC) (Link)
[i]"Yes, I'm quite sure you'd have been very tame and well-behaved," Minerva said, then sighed.[/i]

Just the way McGonagall likes em. ;)

Very good stuff, Fern.
From: spitc1899 Date: November 29th, 2008 07:56 am (UTC) (Link)
I love these! The one with Minvera and Sirius is so bittersweet. James is just adorable. Neville saving up the cradle-robbing jokes made me laugh. Bill is such a wonderful dad, and I just want to put my arms around Victoire and promise her that it will work out.
From: (Anonymous) Date: November 29th, 2008 10:07 pm (UTC) (Link)
Loved the Ruth/James especially! But I enjoy every one, always.

-SideAlong
hungrytiger11 From: hungrytiger11 Date: November 29th, 2008 10:25 pm (UTC) (Link)
Loved them all. Sirius and Minervra were just so touching, while all the love and awkwardness of an eight year gap was just plain realistic in the James/Ruthless one and I love anything you write with Victoire in it. Poor Bill, though. Your baby is grown up!
amamama From: amamama Date: November 30th, 2008 09:07 pm (UTC) (Link)
Wheee! I've got a face-splitting grin at the moment. Didn't remember Marauder's Roost - must reread - and this is just fantastic! I'm amazed Bill still tries to keep up dicipline. Heh... But I guess he feels he has to, with his part-Veela daughters.

The other stories too - wonderful. Sirius/Minerva... *sigh* And very excited James with Ruth. *g* I've been away all weekend, this was a fantastic treat to come home to! Not sure I'll manage to plough through the other stories you've posted tonight, but what a fantastic start I'll get on December! Yay!!! Thank you SO much.

Cheers!
elendiari22 From: elendiari22 Date: December 1st, 2008 06:13 pm (UTC) (Link)
These are all so great, I love your fics. Thanks!
20 comments or Leave a comment