Title: A Pint of Firewhiskey
Author's name: Nagini Riddle
Ratings: 3rd-5th yrs
Warnings: for some drinking, implied sexual situations, and implied character death
Summer: He takes a "holiday" in the tropics for Halloween to clear his mind, but it only furthers his depression...
A Pint of Firewhiskey
He was seething over the pint of firewhiskey set before him, pondering the best method for revenge against the headmaster. His lank greasy hair brushed the top of the counter as he hunched over, vindictiveness in his body language, his hooked nose protruding slightly from the thin black strands he hid behind.
The other patrons gave him a wide berth, but they did nothing to dim their boisterous shouts and antics, reveling in the Halloween mood. They toasted with foaming butterbeers (or else something stronger) to skeletons, to cakes, to pasties, to drinking, to women... The list went on, many dancing and singing to the warbling of the Wizarding Wireless Network, others stuffing themselves with savories and sweets.
But he blocked out their idiotic merriment, brooding over his drink, counting down the time that he would be able to return to the castle and give Dumbledore a piece of his mind.
It had all started with Dumbledore reading too much into his sour mood. As the weeks had drawn closer to Halloween, the headmaster thought- foolishly- that one certain potion's master needed a break, time off to "recollect his thoughts" and "come to terms with his feelings." Preferably far away from Hogwarts. Far, far away.
Of course, he had done his best to argue and refuse. Argue didn't seem strong enough of a word to describe the shouting match that had ensued. But, as always, the headmaster used blackmail and now the teacher found himself holed up in a bar somewhere in the tropics.
Sun didn't suit him. He preferred the cold, dark, unfeeling sense of his dungeons. He supposed that's why Dumbledore had sent him here, of all places. He wished his staff to be as uncomfortable as possible.
He growled inwardly. He would never admit it, but he wished to be back in the castle, docking hefty amounts of points from the cheeky blighters in the halls, partaking in the delicious Halloween feast, and the feeling of, well, home. At least there, he was less inclined to nurse his wounded soul inside of him that constantly lived in a stone cage of guilt. Well, maybe. He wouldn't admit it this, either, but he thought of her continuously. Of the betrayal, their severed friendship, the debt he now owed.
Coldness engulfed him, and he immediately brought the pint to his pale lips and drank deeply. He tried to drive the unwelcome thoughts from his mind. If he allowed them accommodation, he knew it would end with morose regret and an empty, hollow heart.
He perceived the celebrations around him a little more fully, sneering at the laughter and stupidity that abounded. He snorted at their wild abandonment, their lack of discipline, of simple worries and cares.
Simple. It was something he lacked and yearned for. He was anything but simple. An intricately woven man with stressful duties, hauntings of what-ifs, and internally clashing ideals. And now, the festive spirit of Halloween threw it all into scrutinizing light brought on by blasted candles and lamps and jack-o-lanterns.
He shuffled his feet against the bar stool and quickly glanced around at the overly cheerful house. His stomach quite suddenly deserted him.
He was staring at Lily. Deep red hair, a winning smile, soft freckles, green eyes... And she was laughing in his direction, beckoning him to her.
He stonily stared, rational thought no longer existing. How he craved her so! Longed to be with her again, gain the woman of his dreams...
He groggily awoke in a soft bed and had the sensation of a cold body next to him. Perplexed, he glared at his left side and saw red hair splayed onto a pillow, but it wasn't Lily. Her features were too sharp.
And then he noticed one of the most horrific things- a thin black cloak gliding onto the bed, its silence eerie and foreboding- the carnivorous lethifold. If he strained his ears, he could only hear her labored, frozen breathing.
He groped for his wand, his dark eyes never leaving the movement of the silky creature. It was too late to save the girl, but he couldn't force himself to look away.
A hollow deadweight settled on him and, he stumbled off the bed, wand raised. He couldn't save her. He couldn't save her. He couldn't save Lily...
He groggily backed out of the blackening room, the walls suffocating as they closed in, the imprint of the woman still present amongst the woolen covers...
And the sixth anniversary of Lily Potter's demise drowned in a pint of firewhiskey.