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Teddy Lupin and the Hunter's Moon, Chapter 8: The Great Distraction, pt. 2 - The Phantom Librarian
Spewing out too many words since November 2003
Teddy Lupin and the Hunter's Moon, Chapter 8: The Great Distraction, pt. 2
Teddy's thrown off completely from the Greyback situation when he discovers that his friend Donzo has a girlfriend, and when the news comes out to the general student body, the third year boys begin to obsess over whether or not they all "ought" to have girlfriends. Franklin Driscoll is rejected, and Maurice Burke is annoyed by the whole thing, but most of them, Teddy included, are entertaining the question, and with the first Hogsmeade weekend coming up, Teddy is asking advice about asking a particular short-tempered Beater.

ETA: knackard has done Tonks visiting Lucius in Chapter 13 of Shades.

And I guess Neville/Vivian is jossed. Long live Hannah. :) I guess Neville and Vivian will simply remain friends.

Table of Contents and Summary So Far

By Friday, the day before the Hogsmeade visit, Roger had worked up the nerve to ask Jane Hunter, the Muggle-born Slytherin girl who'd helped him explain dinosaurs to Professor Firenze. He seemed surprised to discover that, once they started talking, he actually rather liked her. "Her mum's a physicist!" he said, astounded. "And Jane wants to find out how broomsticks fly. I always wondered about that, too. I didn't know someone else did!"

Franklin Driscoll, who played Seeker on the Ravenclaw Quidditch team, recovered from his rejection by Lizzie Richardson, asking his teammate, Connie Deverill, who played Chaser. Lizzie, meanwhile, seemed to have got attached to a fourth-year boy. Maurice and Tinny were morally opposed to the whole business, and were going into town with Frankie. Frankie had asked Teddy to come along, but Teddy hadn't quite decided.

Or, rather, he'd decided what he meant to do, but hadn't quite worked up the nerve. He thought perhaps lunch would be a good time, but it was very crowded, and Ruthless was talking Quidditch with her fellow Beater, Skipton Royce. He tried to call after her before she walked out, but it came out in a sort of breathy squeak. Victoire looked at him oddly, then with dawning horror.

By the time he'd finished his afternoon classes, there was no question of going to dinner. His stomach was twisting in very tight knots. He wished he'd never brought it up to himself, because now, if he didn't do it, he'd be a failure. He sat at his desk, taking deep breaths and letting Checkmate chew on the collar of his robes. He heard people start to come back in downstairs.

"All right," he said, and plucked Checkmate from his chest, setting her down on the desk, where she mewed plaintively. "You're Ruthless."

Checkmate didn't appear to care about her change in name, and continued crying, poking her nose up toward Teddy's shoulder. He put his hands firmly on her chest to keep her still, though he supposed that might not be the best approach with the real Ruthless.

"So... would you like to go into Hogsmeade with me tomorrow?"

Checkmate squirmed and lost her balance, then jumped down to the floor. A moment later, she was picking at his leg, begging to be picked back up. It didn't really seem like an answer.

He started to get up to go downstairs and wait for her, but sat back down. His blood all seemed to be rushing into his face, and it was making him dizzy. Miserably, he pulled the Marauder's Map out of his book bag and pointed Dad's wand at it. "It's Teddy," he said. "Tell me I'm an idiot, will you?"

James Potter's handwriting soaked up through the parchment: Mr. Prongs is happy to oblige Mr. Lupin, and to add that he's a rather disappointing Gryffindor.

Sirius Black: Mr. Padfoot greets Mr. Lupin, and defers to Mr. Moony in this matter, as that ought to be amusing.

Peter Pettigrew: Mr. Wormtail wishes Mr. Lupin good luck, and wonders where he left his backbone.

"That's rich, from you," Teddy muttered.

Dad: Mr. Moony salutes Mr. Lupin, who appears to have lost both his courage and his sanity.

"Hmmph. That's rich from you, too, as you married a girl with pink hair, and she had to bully you into it." Teddy sighed, then prodded the Map with his wand and said, "Mr. Ted Lupin respectfully requests that the Marauders share their wisdom on the subject of Miss Ruth Scrimgeour."

No response.

"In that case, he requests the honor of learning your wisdom about girls."

Still no response. They had apparently not decided that this was among the subjects about which they would pass their knowledge to future magical mischief makers, even if they were asked politely.

"Oh, all right, then. Good night." He cleared the Map and re-folded it to return to his book bag. He thought about trying Dad's ring, but his parents hadn't precisely asked one another out, and he had a feeling they wouldn't have preserved memories of asking other people out for him.

He braced himself. He was the only Gryffindor in his year. He was not going to be the only one to lose his nerve.

His knees shaking, he stood up, patted Checkmate on the head, and gulped. He could hear his heart beating, and he was quite sure everyone else would be able to as well, but when he descended into the Common Room, no one seemed to notice.


Teddy grabbed the edge of the mantel above the fireplace, his hand disappearing in the lush leaves of the Lionbloom that grew there. Ruthless was sitting on the floor, her Astronomy textbook open and a star-chart half-finished beside her. She was smiling perfectly normally, and said something that seemed to echo quite a lot.

"What?" he asked.

"I didn't see you at dinner," she said, with exaggerated care.

"I wasn't, er... well, I didn't... I wasn't... er..."

"Hungry?" Victoire suggested from a chair by the window, where she was sitting with her back turned.

"Right," Teddy said gratefully. "Hungry. I wasn't hungry."

"All right," Ruthless said. She looked at Victoire, who shrugged indifferently and went back to her book. Ruthless patted the floor across from her. "Do you have homework?"

"It's upstairs," Teddy said.

"Want some of mine? I was hoping to finish before Hogsmeade tomorrow, but they've really got it piled on."

"Will you... er..."


"Will you finish it before curfew, do you think?"

Victoire snorted into her book.

Ruthless raised her wand casually and whispered, "Sedesambulosa." Victoire's chair suddenly scampered across the room, dumping her into a group of fifth year girls, who turned to glare at Ruthless. Victoire stood up, her face red, then grabbed her book and stormed up the girls' stairs.

Ruthless winced. "Didn't mean to dump her there. No one deserves that lot."

"Mm-hmm," Teddy said.

"I should go apologize. And take any sweet she offers me, right?"


"And then I'll put on a jarvey costume and dance around in the Great Hall insulting the teachers."


She waved her hand in front of his face and snapped her fingers. "Lupin?"

He blinked. "I didn't bring my homework to do."

"Do you want to go get it, or do you want to play cards?" She held out an Exploding Snap deck.

"Cards," Teddy said, though he couldn't remember the rules, and lost seven hands before she finally gave up and put them away. The older girls had gone upstairs, and the only other people left in the Common Room were a pair of seventh year boys trying to build some sort of gliding machine for their Muggle Studies N.E.W.T.

"What's wrong with you?" she asked.

"Nothing," Teddy said, and his voice went up half an octave.

"Are you sure?"


"This isn't about some madman coming after you or something?"

Teddy shook his head, trying to remember what exactly she was talking about, as it seemed important. He gulped. His heart was beating very quickly now, as well as being loud, and he couldn't really feel his fingertips, though he supposed that might be because the cards had exploded in his hands several times. "Er... Ruthless?"


"Are you going to Hogsmeade tomorrow?"


"Do you... I mean... could you... would you... er... go with me?" He closed his eyes.

"I was thinking I would anyway," she said. "It's not like I'm about to roam around with my dormitory-mates, and it was dull going alone last year. Are you going in with Frankie and that lot?"

"No," Teddy said. "I thought... I mean, we'll see them... but I was thinking... maybe we could go to Hogsmeade together." He forced his eyes open just as Ruthless's tawny eyes went wide, and her skin went so red that her freckles disappeared.

"Oh!" she said. "Er... oh."

Teddy looked down at the carpet. "Oh. Sorry."

"What? No, I don't mean--" She shook her head. "Do you mean... go with each other? Did one of your mates dare you to do this? Is it a joke?"

Teddy shook his head rapidly. "No! I just... well, we get on well enough, and you're very pretty, really, and..." He looked at her, and she just seemed dumbfounded, which wasn't an entirely positive response. He guessed he'd be hanging about with Frankie and Maurice and Tinny after all. He stood up, arms crossed over his chest, chin drooping toward the floor. "Sorry," he said. "I shouldn't have... we can just go in with Frankie. I won't be weird."

"You're always weird," Ruthless said, but it was automatic.

Teddy started back to the boys' stairs.

"Wait," Ruthless said and ran over to him. They were now behind a large outgrowth of the Lionbloom, hidden from the boys with their glider. She was chewing her lip. "I didn't say no," she said.

"You didn't?"

"Well... I never fancied being someone's girlfriend, but I reckon if I did fancy it, I'd pick... well... I'll go to Hogsmeade with you."

"You will?"

She swallowed hard, then nodded firmly, her frizzy red hair bouncing and catching the firelight. "But... well, there need to be rules."
92 comments or Leave a comment
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rotae From: rotae Date: October 20th, 2007 05:21 am (UTC) (Link)

Oh man, Teddy was just brilliant. *bows* I worship your writing of 13 year old boys. XDD

fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: October 20th, 2007 05:31 am (UTC) (Link)
Thank you. I love writing them. They're so deeply simple.
From: lianna_blanca Date: October 20th, 2007 05:23 am (UTC) (Link)
RULES? Oh, this'll be painfull... though I can't imagine Teddy being any more embarassed. Good on him for asking the map, though - loved that bit.
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: October 20th, 2007 05:32 am (UTC) (Link)
Well, you have to ask your best mates for advice, right? ;p
willowbough From: willowbough Date: October 20th, 2007 05:35 am (UTC) (Link)
Lots of funny stuff here, including Victorie's "dawning horror" at discovering whom Teddy's crushing on, the romantic musical-chairs going on in Teddy's year, Teddy's own terror at approaching Ruthless, and the Marauder's Map's quartet of insults and completely lack of usefulness in this particular situation! Pity that Teddy hasn't had the opportunity to watch James making a fool of himself over Lily--it might make him feel better.

At least Ruthless was willing to meet Teddy halfway, instead of letting him twist in the wind.
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: October 20th, 2007 05:43 am (UTC) (Link)
I think James made a fool of himself in entirely different ways, but yeah... it might do him some good to know that his father wasn't the only one who was completely inept.
sonetka From: sonetka Date: October 20th, 2007 05:40 am (UTC) (Link)
What, Teddy never thought of bonding with Ruthless by reading Fifi LaFolle together? :) Oh well, maybe in seven years or so he and Victoire can do that without instantly dying of shame.

Damn it, how did Neville/Vivian get jossed? Did JKR give another interview? (I love the woman, but I wish she'd just have done with it and release the official Encyclopedia Of Everything You Wanted To Know About the Potterverse (But Were Afraid To Be Jossed By).
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: October 20th, 2007 05:42 am (UTC) (Link)
Yeah, I hold my breath every time she opens her mouth, and I don't want the encyclopedia. I am happy with canon as is. ;p She revealed that Neville marries Hannah during her tour.

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victorialupin From: victorialupin Date: October 20th, 2007 05:43 am (UTC) (Link)
I love this so much. And Teddy's pretty wonderful for asking out a girl that he actually likes instead of just for the sake of having one. Some of the other boys in his year act as if girls are trading cards. ;)

It's too bad that you feel the need to remove Neville/Vivian. I know Jo's word is law in HPverse, but I really think that when it comes to answers about the future she's just saying things on the spot. I don't think she's got their futures mapped out.
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: October 20th, 2007 05:46 am (UTC) (Link)
Yeah, but there's no real point or purpose to Neville/Vivian, except that I didn't want to pair him off with one of the spare characters (and I also wasn't sure which members of the class survived!), so it's not a big deal to take it out. Mostly, all I've showed is them being friends. Of course, he'll have to move out of Hogwarts, apparently, as he lives above the pub.
Re: ? - (Anonymous) - Expand
darth_pipes From: darth_pipes Date: October 20th, 2007 05:46 am (UTC) (Link)
Teddy and Ruthless' interaction here is great. I enjoyed Teddy pretending Checkmate was Ruthless and the back and forth insults with the Marauders Map. Great job, Fern.
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: October 20th, 2007 05:55 am (UTC) (Link)
I'm glad the whole lead up works for a guy, actually!
From: (Anonymous) Date: October 20th, 2007 05:51 am (UTC) (Link)
I know you like to stick with canon but, please, don't give up on Neville and Vivian! Maybe Neville's a widower. Or maybe they got divorced (OK, the idea of dumping Neville once you've got him is a bit out there, but maybe she was possessed by aliens or something and felt too ashamed to admit it afterwards and married somebody else so there's no chance they can get back together). Maybe Hannah visited Neville's parents who recognized her as one of the people who attacked them but got away (hey, toddlers have long been known as the perfect weapon to drive people crazy). Maybe Hannah developed a drinking problem or left Neville for a maple mead salesman.

Or, wait, how's this? A bunch of Neville/Vivan shippers got together, raided the remains of the time turners in hopes of turning back the clock and, instead, accidentally dumped time turner sand on Hannah, turning her into a very cranky five year old with no memory of puberty, much less marriage, and the wedding was annulled? Or Hannah was eaten by a dragon (I don't want to heap tragedy on Neville, who's had enough, but desperate times call for desperate measures [now, please, save Hannah's life by not making it necessary for us to go to extremes like that. PLEASE!!!]).

fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: October 20th, 2007 05:56 am (UTC) (Link)
Tee-hee. Vivian thanks you, but believes she will seek out an unattached gentlewizard instead, and remain simply as Professor Longbottom's good friend and confidante. Either that, or she'll turn him down in the end.
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(no subject) - (Anonymous) - Expand
dudley_doright From: dudley_doright Date: October 20th, 2007 06:05 am (UTC) (Link)
Yes Roger, it's altogether nicer when you actually *like* the girl. *grins*

I don't think I've words for how adorable Teddy is in this part. And Checkmate! Checkmate is completely adorable.

And poor Vivian. Is it weird that my first thoughts whenever Jo answers questions are of how it'll affect your fic-verse? I mean, I'm thoroughly happy for canon!neville, I've thought for a while a 'puff would take good care of him. But Vivian!
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: October 20th, 2007 06:09 am (UTC) (Link)
Sadly, I mainly read her comments to see what I'm getting jossed on, too. ;p

Yes Roger, it's altogether nicer when you actually *like* the girl. *grins*

Which had apparently never even occurred to him. Imagine that! She likes the same thing you like! You might have, I don't know, something to talk about!
marikenobi From: marikenobi Date: October 20th, 2007 06:11 am (UTC) (Link)
I love 13 year old boys!

And really Neville and Vivian can briefly date before Hannah comes along... :)
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: October 20th, 2007 06:20 am (UTC) (Link)
I love 13 year old boys!

They are funny, fabulous little creatures, aren't they?
From: kobegrace Date: October 20th, 2007 06:27 am (UTC) (Link)
Okay: now it's time for a real comment on the chapter; I promise I won't babble on about Neville and Vivian anymore.

Must say, Victoire is just adorable in this chapter, and Teddy -- my heart goes out to him. But Ruthless was killer here, as (relatively) small as her part was. 'RULES' -- that's bloody priceless. I can just imagine it now: "No Madam Puddifoot's. Always keep two steps behind. Don't hold doors open or pull out chairs for me, and if you so much as offer to pay for my drinks, you're a dead man."

PS: Please tell me that, when this lot grow up, get settled down and find comfort in their own skin, Victoire and Ruthless have learned to become good friends.
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: October 20th, 2007 06:31 am (UTC) (Link)
Oh, yes. Ruthless is probably the bigger problem, as Victoire knows, on some level, that she can't very well chain Teddy up and refuse to allow him to ever talk to another girl. But sooner or later, it will occur to her that she'd do well to have friends among the girls, and Victoire doesn't entirely fit in with them, either. And Victoire will learn that it's probably best not to instruct Ruthless on hair care.

The rules will be mentioned. "No Madam Puddifoot's" is definitely at the top of the list. ;p
petitecrivan From: petitecrivan Date: October 20th, 2007 07:42 am (UTC) (Link)
There are ALWAYS rules. But hee!
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: October 20th, 2007 01:03 pm (UTC) (Link)
Oh, but these are special Ruthless rules, which may or may not match the rules of any other girl. ;p
jedi_chick From: jedi_chick Date: October 20th, 2007 08:16 am (UTC) (Link)
"Maurice and Tinny were opposed to the whole business, and were going into town with Frankie." I love how Tinny is actually getting her way regarding her crush. Even if he has no idea. ;~)

Teddy's behavior cracks me up, though I'm glad he managed to get the question out, and that Ruthless is amicable to it. I'm looking forward to her rules.

I liked Victoire's reaction to the whole situation as well. It seems fitting that in the middle of trying to explain his behavior to Ruthless, it's Victoire that's finishing his sentences.

And may I join the rest of the readers in lamenting the loss of Neville/Vivian. Hannah just seems too...ordinary for Neville.
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: October 20th, 2007 01:04 pm (UTC) (Link)
I love how Tinny is actually getting her way regarding her crush. Even if he has no idea. ;~)

I have a feeling Tinny is going to need to get used to this scenario over the next few years.
kiwi_kimi From: kiwi_kimi Date: October 20th, 2007 09:26 am (UTC) (Link)
Rules! Ruth is such a great character.

Two things I noticed:

"might not bet he best" - the gaps are in the wrong places.

"share their wisdom on subject of Miss Ruth Scrimgeour" - missing a "the"?
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: October 20th, 2007 01:05 pm (UTC) (Link)
Oops, thanks; I'll fix those.
got_it_bub From: got_it_bub Date: October 20th, 2007 09:32 am (UTC) (Link)
Victoires's response was so bloody brilliant. I apsoloutly loved Teddy's response!
ps. I don't think i spelt apsoloutly correct?
oh well
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: October 20th, 2007 01:06 pm (UTC) (Link)
Thanks. Teddy's very fun. :D

I don't think i spelt apsoloutly correct?
Not entirely (it's "absolutely"), but I dont' spell-check comments, unless the commentor seems to want to know!! ;p
(Deleted comment)
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: October 20th, 2007 01:07 pm (UTC) (Link)
Hee, glad you wail-laughed. Waighed?
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