Categories > Books > Harry Potter


by BeccaStareyes 2 reviews

The hardship of loss may bring two estranged family members together. Or, so Narcissa hopes, since she just can't take the loneliness any more. (DH spoilers)

Category: Harry Potter - Rating: G - Genres: Drama - Characters: Andromeda Tonks,Narcissa - Warnings: [!!!] - Published: 2008-01-11 - Updated: 2008-01-11 - 1630 words - Complete

The house was cavernous in its silence. Narcissa could hear the ticking of the clock from three rooms away, the footfalls of the family's house elves as they cleaned up the last remains of the Dark Lord's occupancy.

The Ministry had let her return home. Potter had recounted that her lie had saved him from the Dark Lord, and both Lucius and Draco had sworn that her only part in the whole last year's events was as unwilling hostess. Their word, and Potter's word wasn't enough to buy their freedom, yet. Maybe it wasn't enough to buy it at all. Lucius had actually been involved -- they'd sent him to Azkaban once, and they could well do it again. So had her dear Draco -- never mind that Draco had been only because the Dark Lord would have killed his father. Narcissa had never wanted either of them to be -- let other people's husbands and sons die for the cause.

But it was too late now, and there was nothing she could do. The remaining Aurors and wizards in Magical Law Enforcement had taken her statements, and brushed her aside, with a 'we'll be in touch'. Until then, she must wait for whatever judgement was handed down.

"More tea, Mistress?" one of the house elves said, holding the pot. "It's nearly suppertime."

"No, thank you. Just bring up a tray when you finish supper." As she watched the creature bow, and head off upon its business, she was struck with a pang of loneliness. /How desperate am I, to want to have a conversation with a House Elf/. She hadn't done that since she was a child, before she had really learned much about how to behave. That and Dromeda had done it, no matter how many times her parents had told them not to bother the house elves. Bella had picked on her mercilessly for it, but Bella had always been like that.

Narcissa was surprised to find she missed both of them. They'd both been incredibly annoying to her, but, in fairness, she probably had been a bratty little sister right back to them. And she had never really understood either of them. Both had been entranced by breaking the rules - Bella had run off and joined the Dark Lord and had been fighting against the Ministry, and Dromeda had fallen for that Mudblood boy, and run off and married him. She'd tried talking to them both, telling them to be reasonable for once, but each was equally stubborn in pursuing her enchantment. During the first war, every time an owl had arrived, she wasn't sure which she expected to happen first -- a letter saying Bella had been arrested, or a letter saying Dromeda had been killed. She'd even penned a letter to both -- never mind that Mother and Father had removed Dromeda from the family, and Bella was completely out of contact with reality, let alone the owl post -- telling them that if either did something to ruin her wedding, she would never forgive them. She'd never sent it, of course, but it was a way of taking out her worries. When the news about Bella's arrest and trial had came out, Narcissa had almost wanted to storm Azkaban herself and demand to know what Bella had been /thinking/. The Dark Lord had lost -- there was no need to go around torturing Aurors anymore. Not that there was to begin with -- Narcissa had never seen why one couldn't justt approach the Ministry like civilized human beings about the matter.

And, now, Bella was dead. "I hope you're happy, Bella." Narcissa said to herself. "You'd probably be miserable living in a world where your Dark Lord lost, anyway."

It didn't help. Even if she didn't miss the crazy harridan that Bella had become, she did still miss the older sister who would help her sneak sweets out of the kitchens. Narcissa looked around, for a distraction, and grabbed a copy of the /Daily Prophet/. More things she didn't want to see, but perhaps she could find the puzzle section. She never was that good at them, but maybe the challenge of remembering exactly who the drummer in the Weird Sisters was would take her mind off of the matter.

Her eye caught on a name, something familiar

Nymphadora Tonks-Lupin, age 25. Died at the battle of Hogwarts. Daughter of Theodore and Andromeda Tonks, Nymphadora attended Hogwarts from 1984 to 1991, where she was sorted into Hufflepuff. After leaving school, she completed training as an Auror, and married Remus J. Lupin. Nymphadora was survived by her mother, and her son, Theodore Lupin. A joint memorial service will be held at the residence of Andromeda Tonks...

That isn't what I wanted to read at all! Narcissa had never met her niece. The only word she'd ever heard of her existence was Bella's insistence that no half-blood descendant of the House of Black should be permitted to exist. Considering Bella and her associates had been involved with suspending a Hogwarts professor over the dining room table and killing her at the time, Narcissa had to bite back a thought that at least a half-blood might have an excuse to act uncivilized. After all, it wasn't like the poor girl could control who her parents were.

The service was tomorrow. /Dromeda must be so lonely, without her husband and child/. It was a rather startling bit of empathy for her sister. /I haven't thought of her in so long. I don't even remember hearing if her husband died/. But he must have, or he would have been included there. He would have been a target, especially with Bella around. /I should do something for Dromeda/.


Andromeda was sick of funerals -- she had had to bury far too many relatives recently. Sirius had been not unexpected, given how long her favorite cousin had spent in Azkaban, but she thought she'd still have many lovely years withTed, and that Dora would outlive the both of them. She watched the crowds file past: members of the Order of the Phoenix, her daughter's coworkers from the Ministry -- those that had collaborated with Voldemort looking sheepish and avoiding her stares -- Hogwarts professors and students that had known her son-in-law. Many of them had the same uncomfortable platitudes to tell her: such a shame her daughter had been cut down in her prime, and as new mother, but she had helped defeat Lord Voldemort, so she'd died for a greater good. She could tell who else had lost someone close to them by who didn't bother with the empty words.

It was nearly over, though. Everyone had said their goodbyes to Dora and Remus, leaving her alone, standing there with little Teddy. He looked so much like Dora had when she was an infant, though part of that might be the Metamormagus talent. Dora had always said how much she thought he looked like Remus, though -- something in the eyes.

As the crowd thinned, Andromeda thought she caught a familiar face coming out from the crowd. "What are you doing here, Narcissa?" My God, she looks old. Well, it had been over two decades since she had seen Narcissa in person. She looked again, and decided it was wasn't just age, but fatigue -- Narcissa looked as tired as Andromeda felt.

"I just thought I'd come to pay my respects." Narcissa said softly. Almost hesitantly. "I know I didn't know your daughter, but-"

"Because Mother and Father disowned me once I refused to break up with Ted, and you couldn't risk your precious reputation by associating with a blood-traitor." Andromeda snapped back. "It's a little late for feeling sorry about it."

"Dromeda, I..." Narcissa swallowed. "I didn't get why you did it. Even Bella managed to find a nice pureblooded boy-"

"I wouldn't call that monster 'nice'. And look where it got Bella. She was probably the one who-" Andromeda choked back a sob. Teddy started fussing as well. How dare Narcissa just show up here, reminding her of the people who had taken Dora and Ted from her! Was she looking for her to sink back to the life she had been expected to lead, now that her husband was dead, and she no longer was 'tainted' by loving a Muggleborn?

Narcissa stepped closer to her. "Dromeda, what I meant to say was, I didn't know why you did it. But... Even if your- Ted was a Mu-Muggleborn wizard, you still loved him. And your daughter. And, it might be too late, and Lucius won't approve at all, but I'm willing to remember him as my brother-in-law, and her as my niece."

"Why?" Andromeda narrowed her eyes. "Don't tell me you suddenly had a change of heart."

"I just don't want to have no family left," Narcissa sighed, avoiding her gaze. "I kept in touch with Bella long after any sane person would have packed her off to Saint Mungo's. You, at least, aren't crazy and prone to killing family that don't live up to your lofty presentations." Narcissa looked at her again, with a look on her face like she had smelled something awful, and Andromeda had to chuckle at that. The expression on her face was just so Cissy -- apparently murder was Simply Not Done, according to her manners book.

What is she really thinking under there? Does she really mean this? Teddy's whimpers brought her back to the matter at hand. "I have to get him inside and settled. Would... would you like to come in for a cup of tea?"

"I'd love to." Narcissa answered, and Andromeda found herself wondering if this had been the first genuine conversation Narcissa had had in years.
Sign up to rate and review this story