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Teddy Lupin and the Daedalus Maze, Chapter Four: Gifts and Curses , pt. 2 - The Phantom Librarian
Spewing out too many words since November 2003
fernwithy
fernwithy
Teddy Lupin and the Daedalus Maze, Chapter Four: Gifts and Curses , pt. 2
The school year is rushing at Teddy, and its latest manifestation is Slughorn taking him to France. Slughorn will be retiring, so he insists that Teddy be able to do Wolfsbane Potion solo, to help the young werewolf Neil Overby. Neil's foster mother, Evvie Blondin, insists on taking Teddy's first unassisted dose herself, her husband flatly admitting that it's because they're not going to risk Neil to test Teddy's brewing skills. Slughorn says it won't be a concern, but does yell at Teddy for woolgathering when he's meant to be working.

Table of Contents and Summary So Far




Evvie and Nate both ended up taking doses from Nate's cauldron, just before sunset. Slughorn said that any negative reaction would be immediate and ugly, but Teddy wanted to stay anyway, at least for an hour, to make sure nothing had gone wrong. Slughorn knew antidotes, and if he couldn't do anything, Teddy would call Granny and she'd take care of it.

"It's completely unnecessary," Slughorn said. "But if would set your mind at ease--and Mr. and Mrs. Blondin have no objections--I see no reason you can't stay and reassure yourself."

"We never mind having Teddy," Evvie said fondly. "And actually, it went down quite easily. It still tastes horrid, but I suppose there's nothing to be done for it. As long as I've enough of my mind to recognize the awful taste, it's an improvement over not having it." She glanced at the kitchen door, where Neil had been hovering. "You may as well come in. If Papa Nate and I are all right in an hour--and I think we will be--you'd do as well to start your doses."

Neil came in, slithered around Teddy, and dropped into a chair, his eyes wide. He looked at Teddy and blinked several times.

"Er," Teddy started, unable to think of what Neil was asking. The boy had seen his family murdered two years ago, when Fenrir Greyback had turned him, and hadn't been entirely right since, though he'd at least got to the point where he played normally with children he knew after a while. When he was nervous, though, it seemed to possess his mind as thoroughly as the full moon. Teddy gave him an encouraging smile. "Er... did you get your wand, Neil?"

Neil nodded.

"What's in it?"

Neil blinked a few more times, then mumbled something.

Evvie looked over mildly. "What's the name of the wood again, Neil?"

"M..." Neil chewed his lip, then--a bit too loudly, but clearly--said, "Maple. With one of Mum Evvie's tail hairs."

"Berit Ollivander made that?" Teddy asked, surprised. Berit had once experimented with cores, but she'd cut back quite a lot, and even at her most adventurous, would have thought werewolf hair too volatile.

Evvie laughed. "Oh, no. Berit said it was quite a mad idea. We went to a wandmaker in Paris. Spanish ex-pat. Says he wants to push to the very edge of the acceptable."

"That's not wise," Slughorn said.

"I told Neil that I'd always be there with him this way," Evvie said.

Teddy, who carried his mother's wand and used his father's for the Marauder's Map, considered this perfectly valid reasoning, and ignored Slughorn's tutting. He smiled at Neil. "Well, that's good, then. You'll be fine."

"They won't like me."

"Why shouldn't they like you?"

"Marie Weasley doesn't like me when she comes here, and she'll be in my year."

"What? What makes you think that? I'm sure Marie likes you. And if she does anything out of place, I know Victoire will Curse her back a year."

Neil smiled widely. He seemed to like Victoire, who had stabbed Greyback in the face during the final confrontation. "Do you think so?"

"Absolutely."

"And no one would argue with Victoire!"

Teddy considered this. "Well, I wouldn't go that far, but arguing with Victoire is definitely not free."

"Good." Neil looked at the cauldron, and Evvie ignored him. He turned back to Teddy. "I have my books as well. I think I'll like Potions best. I want to brew my own Wolfsbane Potion. What do you like best? Do you play on the Quidditch Team? Who are the nice teachers?"

"I like all my classes, I don't even like Quidditch when my girlfriend is playing, and as far nice teachers go, you already know Professor Longbottom, and he's the best of all, but there's no one cruel anymore. My other favorite is Professor Robards. He teaches Defense Against the Dark Arts."

Neil frowned. "I read the book. It talks about werewolves. Do we have to talk about werewolves in class? Will I have to answer questions?"

"Not unless you want to," Teddy said. "Why don't I introduce you to Professor Robards when you get there, and you could talk to him before it comes up in class? Then you'll know what to expect."

Neil agreed eagerly.

"You know," Evvie said, "Teddy's dad once gave us some books about lycanthropy. We all thought we didn't need them, but they turned out quite interesting. You may find out things that it's good to know."

They talked out the rest of the hour, mainly about Hogwarts, and what Neil might expect. Evvie and Nate remained healthy, and at the end of the hour, Evvie dipped a goblet into the simmering potion, and Nate handed it to Neil. Neil drank it. He wrinkled his nose, but had no other reaction. Teddy made sure there was enough to last for the week, then made a quick pain-killing potion that Sirius (and later, Mum) had used to make for Dad. It was simple, but it worked for the morning after transformation, and Teddy enjoyed feeling connected to Mum and Sirius as he worked.

"I should check on them tomorrow," he said as he climbed into a cart beside Slughorn for the trip down the mountain. "Just to make sure."

"You're sure, Lupin. Now, you just want more thanks."

Teddy ground his teeth. That wasn't at all true. He didn't talk to Slughorn the rest of the way down, and was glad that it was really too late at night to invite him in when they got back to Granny's.

The next day, Granny invited Bill Weasley's family and Uncle Harry's for a picnic. Teddy was in Granddad's "Muggle-room" in the basement--where all of the electronic gadgets had been stored and where they continued to age in dusty silence--when the Weasleys arrived. Mum's seven wardrobes were also here, and when Victoire bounded down the stairs and slipped inside, he was sitting beside the open bottom drawer of an armoire.

She dropped down across from him and looked curiously at the contents. "What are you looking for?"

"I don't know," Teddy said. "Ruthless is starting the N.E.W.T.s she needs to go for an Auror post. I thought maybe there'd be something of Mum's I could give her for luck. You know--Mum being an Auror... you know."

"Oh. That's nice."

"Well, I think Mum would like Ruthless. I think she'd want to give her something."

"It's a good idea."

"Really, I don't think Mum would mind."

"All right." Victoire pushed her hair behind her ears and put one delicate hand in the drawer, pushing apart old hair ribbons and lace headbands. There were also piles of costume jewelry here. Nothing looked particularly Auror-ly. Victoire pulled up a pink tulle hair wrap with star-shaped sparkles worked into the netting. "I wouldn't give Ruth this," she said. "It would clash with her hair."

Teddy took it and smoothed it carefully before folding it and putting it back in the drawer. "It would clash with a lot of things."

"Did she have a badge?"

Teddy shook his head. "They took it when they sacked her for marrying Dad. Uncle Harry tried to find it for me, but I guess they destroyed it. And even if... well, I wouldn't give Ruthless Mum's badge. That's, you know, Mum's."

Victoire pulled a straw hat from the drawer and put it on. "I suppose this doesn't really say 'Auror.'"

Teddy shook his head. "It was a stupid idea." He closed the drawer, and looked at all of the other wardrobes. "She used all of them. Except the wedding dresses. But none of them are about being an Auror." He looked at Victoire. "You can keep the hat, if you like it." He considered offering her the pink hair-wrap as well, but that was too purely Mum's to give away. If they'd all lived in Ancient Egypt--and Ancient Egyptians had worn pink tulle--it undoubtedly would have been buried with her for use in the afterlife, along with her bright green trainers with orange laces (now residing in a box on a shelf in Teddy's room) and her wand (which Teddy was glad had passed to him instead). It might as well have been a lock of her hair, which would be no earthly use to anyone else.

Victoire straightened the hat, then made faces at herself in a small mirror Mum had once put on the side of one of the wardrobes. She smiled over her shoulder at Teddy, and it occurred to him that she really was quite beautiful.

He shook his head sharply. Of course she was beautiful; she was part Veela. She was also Victoire Weasley, nearly a relative, not to mention only a third year, and an annoying one at that.

Except that she hadn't really annoyed Teddy for years.

But that was just from constant exposure. It was too tiring to be annoyed at all of her little tics. That didn't make them less annoying, really, on an objective level.

Of course, there was the matter of watching her fight Greyback as well. She'd kept her head when Teddy had nearly lost his own, and he respected that.

Which was just admiration, like he'd have for a sister, or a cousin, or his own mother, for that matter. She'd earned respect and had got it. It didn't mean anything.

"What are you thinking about?" she asked.

"Stupid ideas," Teddy said. He took one last look at Mum's wardrobes. Maybe he'd find something Auror-like for Ruthless later.

The room went bright as a Patronus swirled and formed on the ceiling and dropped down. It was Granny's--a battered old tomcat with a scarred snout, who she'd once identified to Teddy as Granddad's childhood cat, Dodger. In her voice, it said, "Teddy, if you're still in the basement, please bring up the drinks. The Cooling Charm makes them resist Summoning. And Harry's just got here."

"I'll give you a hand," Victoire said.

Teddy followed her out of the Muggle-room, into the main part of the basement. The drinks were in a wooden crate under the table. Teddy shoved it out, then between them, they hefted it and carried out into the sunny afternoon.
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Comments
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lollapulizer From: lollapulizer Date: March 30th, 2008 04:34 pm (UTC) (Link)
Teddy's starting to Notice Victoire! Even if nothing happens between them in this entire fic I still find it exciting. ;)
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: March 30th, 2008 06:09 pm (UTC) (Link)
Yes, but of course, that's totally not what it is, he's absolutely just admiring her like he'd admire a sister.

Yeah.

Uh-huh.
at_upton From: at_upton Date: March 30th, 2008 04:42 pm (UTC) (Link)
I love Victoire's imperfections. That line about not giving Ruthless the pink ribbon because it'd clash with her hair-- she can be so catty. But because we understand what's going on in her head, we can find it endearing. And then there's the pleasant swooshing sound this all makes as it drifts over Teddy's head.

I also really like Andromeda's Patronus. *sniffle*
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: March 30th, 2008 06:11 pm (UTC) (Link)
I can never decide whether she's being catty, or if she just considers herself a true fashion expert who knows what's best for everyone. Either is kind of obnoxious, but she's just... Fleur's daughter!
insixeighttime From: insixeighttime Date: March 30th, 2008 05:44 pm (UTC) (Link)
*delurk*

One of these days I'll leave you a full review with how much I love your writing. Currently let's leave it at you're the only HP author (besides JKR... :P) that I follow. And as an example of how often I read the Shades series and the Teddy series, I'm going to ask if you're contradicting your own canon about the Wolfsbane potion.

"Remus sighed. "They don't allow friends to make social calls on campus, but it's a long-standing tradition that teachers' spouses are allowed to join them for lunch. It will make a perfectly workable cover for Dora to bring me Wolfsbane potion. I wish it kept better. I'd just bring it with me in the morning."

"But it doesn't," Dora said cheerfully. "So I get to play. Once or twice a week all year, so that they don't spot the pattern. Not that Muggles would know what to make of it.""



Although I did have to stop and think if that was from you or from JKR, and once I got the context I still had to wonder before I thought "Oh. Remus at Smeltings. Right, that's Fern. Right? Yes."

Anyway, just a thought, as I was confused how Teddy's potion could keep for the week when Tonks' couldn't keep till lunch.

:)

Thank you for a world so real and consistent that I actually notice things like this.
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: March 30th, 2008 06:14 pm (UTC) (Link)
Ha, good catch, I need to clarify--the reason Tonks needed to make those trips was that Remus was in a Muggle environment. In the Sanctuary, Teddy (or Slughorn, in this case) can do the spells necessary to tend the magical fire and keep it at the right temperature and consistency. Tonks couldn't do that while Remus was at Smeltings, as someone might have noticed!
malinbe From: malinbe Date: March 30th, 2008 05:54 pm (UTC) (Link)
Very nice. I feel so sorry for Neil, and for the life he'd have had instead. But I supposed he still's got some luck, he gets to go to Hogwarts, and has a family. Poor child.

It was so sweet when Teddy brew Sirius' potion, and when he started going through Dora's stuff for Ruthless.

Sometimes I forget Victoire is part veela too. It struck me as odd at first -Teddy's train of thought- because between thirteen and fifteen there's so much growing-up. But then, stabbing a murderer in the face I suppose makes you grow up a lot too. So's killing him.
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: March 30th, 2008 06:17 pm (UTC) (Link)
Yes. And even so, Teddy thinks it's weird to think of a third year that way. (Though I seem to recall at school that it wasn't all that weird for a sophomore boy to have an eighth grade girlfriend. Not common, exactly, but nothing anyone would have raised an eyebrow at.)
thornyrose42 From: thornyrose42 Date: March 30th, 2008 06:07 pm (UTC) (Link)
Wow that felt a bit odd. Not your wrting obviously, but I've just spent the past few days catching up on the younger Teddy stories and it felt slightly wierd going straight from the end of his third year to into the start of his fifth.

Can i just say that Hunter's Moon, much like PoA, is even better on the re-read simply because you can pick up on all of the through lines of plot and all the undercurrents and I have found new apreciation for your genius. Especially the way you handled Teddy's feelings about his possibility family and his real alive family. That last bit when he is confessing to Alderman even made me a bit weepy and i never cry on re reads.

Anyway on to the current Teddy story. Some very interesting conversations in this cahpter, I especially liked Mentor!Teddy and little Neil, who seems like he coudl be quite a chatterbox once he gets going. I am slightly worried about how Hogwarts is going to treat him, although what with all the werewolf publicity in teh past couple of years they will hopefully be better informed then tehy were when Remus was there. I wonder what he did to piss Marie off though.

And Teddy still refers to Ruthless as his girlfriend!

Which is just funny really and quite cute, as was his attempt to find a good luck present for her from his mum's wardrobe of all places. I can only woder what our own Vicky thought about that.
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: March 30th, 2008 06:20 pm (UTC) (Link)
I'm glad HM is hanging together on a re-read. There were places where I was thinking, "Am I tipping my hand too much? Or will the payoff come from too far out of the blue if I hold back?"

I think Victoire is trying very hard to show that she's the grown-up one who doesn't storm around and rage every time the rival is around.
darth_pipes From: darth_pipes Date: March 30th, 2008 06:30 pm (UTC) (Link)
Really enjoyed that, Fern. You wrote Teddy's interactions with Neil and Victorie so well.
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: March 30th, 2008 06:35 pm (UTC) (Link)
Thanks! He's definitely getting to be older.
willowbough From: willowbough Date: March 30th, 2008 07:38 pm (UTC) (Link)
Right, Teddy--just keep telling yourself that you love Victoire like a sister. Just like Remus probably kept telling himself that he loved Dora like a surrogate daughter or something. The denseness of Lupin men persists unto the next generation.

Looking forward to Neil Overby's enrollment at Hogwarts. I like that you manage to find significant "firsts" to deal with, along with Teddy's continuing development.
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: March 30th, 2008 08:10 pm (UTC) (Link)
The denseness of Lupin men persists unto the next generation.

And (probably), yea, unto the end of the earth. ;p

I think Neil may have a lot of older defenders, but that doesn't always help in the process of making friends.
summoner_lenne9 From: summoner_lenne9 Date: March 30th, 2008 07:45 pm (UTC) (Link)
I love your explanations of her wardrobes. It makes me happy, for the completly biased reason of it reminds me of my own Epic Wardrobe Of Doom (even if not quiet THAT epic) and makes me giggle, heh.

She has a point about it clashing with Ruthless' hair though. And she'd never wear it, ever. If Teddy even tried to give it to her she'd stare at him and go- Have you gone mental Lupin?

Something I've noticed, by the way, is comments people write such as "That's so in character for Teddy!" But, the thing is? The only example of his personality we HAVE is your fics, it's not like you're abiding by JKR's canon.

And yet, we all say it anyway, because we forget that your fics AREN'T canon. I've never seen this happen with another author, ever.

And, yes, admiring her pretty blond hair is -just- like admiring your (dead) Mum. Really. Siriusly.

*Has a feeling if Tonks can understand his thought process's she's laughing at him up from Heaven. And Remus is probably just amused by the amount of girlfriends he's had* He does end up almost going through his year, doesn't he? (The thing is? We're talking like this is SO many girls, but really, it's not. I've been in Junior High, and of course early High School, and in junior high people will have a different girlfriend or boyfriend every week. This is seen as completly normal. I've had friends who've dated maybe 30 people all together. Yep.)
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: March 30th, 2008 08:13 pm (UTC) (Link)
Thanks! I try to write him with his own thing, plus enough of Remus and Tonks to make him "feel" like their son.

And, yes, I'm sure Tonks is more than a little amused by all this. The one probably getting a real belly laugh, though, would be Sirius, imho...
kacates From: kacates Date: March 30th, 2008 08:43 pm (UTC) (Link)
I love when Teddy is talking to Victoire about giving something of Tonks' to Ruthless and keeps emphatically stating that he's SURE she wouldn't mind - trying to convince himself that it's okay to let go of something.
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: April 1st, 2008 03:51 am (UTC) (Link)
And of course, there's the fear that someone wouldn't even know what it meant to him (baseless in Ruthless's case, of course).
ada_the_mental From: ada_the_mental Date: March 30th, 2008 09:38 pm (UTC) (Link)
I found Teddy reassuring himself that Tonks wouldn't mind him giving away her stuff just because he can't bring himself to part with them slightly amusing in a bitterweet way...I miss Tonks.

Yup,Tedster, you totally only like Victoire as family.Keep telling yourself that, dear. :p

Neil's adorable. Nervous chatterbox!
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: April 1st, 2008 03:55 am (UTC) (Link)
I miss Tonks, too. Unfair! Flag on the play!

Tedd-o's definitely not using all of his brain cells on this particular Mystery.
(Deleted comment)
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: April 1st, 2008 04:00 am (UTC) (Link)
Slughorn may have a certain point about passive-aggressive reassurance seeking and its actual root, but Teddy's perception of it is that he's deeply nervous and needs reassurance. Dear Sluggy, Teddy is not a Slytherin. He needs to keep these things decently covered up.

I sometimes wonder if the stuff in Egyptian tombs really isn't the very-rich-royalty version of a pink tulle hair wrap, honestly--something that the people who loved them thought they just wouldn't want to be without!
hungrytiger11 From: hungrytiger11 Date: March 30th, 2008 11:22 pm (UTC) (Link)
I lvoed this, espeically the end scene. Teddy's coming up with all these rationalizations to give something of his Mum's to Ruthless, but doesn't even think twice about giving Victoire the hat. Just shows how ...used to each other they are.
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: April 1st, 2008 04:02 am (UTC) (Link)
And Victoire not finding Teddy's behavior in the least bit odd, as well.
jedi_chick From: jedi_chick Date: March 31st, 2008 01:18 am (UTC) (Link)
I don't really have anything to add--like pretty much everyone else, I loved Teddy needing to rationalize giving something of his mum's to Ruthless--but I just wanted to say that I loved this part.

Oh--I also liked Andromeda's Patronus. Very fitting, I think. :~)
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: April 1st, 2008 04:08 am (UTC) (Link)
I was debating what Andromeda's Patronus should be. Then I realized there was only one animal that would mean safety and protection to her.
marikenobi From: marikenobi Date: March 31st, 2008 04:30 am (UTC) (Link)
Awww young love starts to slowly bloom :)

fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: April 1st, 2008 04:12 am (UTC) (Link)
Teddy has no idea what you mean.
From: kobegrace Date: March 31st, 2008 04:44 am (UTC) (Link)
RIP Dodger and all the Cool Cats.

fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: April 1st, 2008 04:14 am (UTC) (Link)
May they find their way to StarClan.
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