This chapter is 5,500+ words. This is my Christmas/holiday gift to you all. Enjoy, I'll see you at the bottom!
The morning Jasmine moved into Potter Manor was louder and a bit more chaotic than she had expected. The floo trip, as expected, was awful. She ended up sprawled on the wooden floor, soot from the fireplace covering her from head to toe. No matter how many bloody lives she lived floo travel just never agreed with her. Maybe it had to do with her connection to Death or maybe it was just that the magic didn't quite agree with her.
She dusted herself off and sat up, taking it slow. She was still recovering from her stay in the hospital and draining her magical core. She was going to become out of shape soon if she didn't start her training back up. Just another thing to add to her never-ending list of things to do.
Then as soon as she attempted to stand up, a small explosion echoed through the room, bringing her back to her knees. Euphemia was crouched on the floor in front of her with a fond smile on her face and a hand extended out to help Jasmine up. The Auror had to have noticed the confused look Jasmine's face. "That would be Monty. He's been trying to make a new potion for one of his business ventures and it hasn't been working as expected."
The manor rumbled precariously one more time before a distant shout of "I'm alright," echoed throughout the house. The voice was completely unfamiliar, slightly raspy, but distinctly male.
"Monty, get out of your potions lab, Jasmine is here!" Euphemia called and a crash sounded from the distance. Jasmine stood up and dusted herself off as she waited for Fleamont Potter to make an appearance. He hadn't come to visit her in the hospital, but Euphemia had mentioned something about his poor immune system and when Jasmine saw him for the first time she understood why she mentioned it. Fleamont Potter was a thin, pale, man with kind amber eyes and smile on his face. This was the man that had reinvigorated the Potter fortune with his line of haircare products. He didn't seem like much and it seemed odd that James was his son, while the had the same hair, he got quite a bit of his looks from his mother, from his high cheekbones to his mischievous grin. It was interesting to see what traits had been passed down.
"So, you must be the mysterious Jasmine that I've been hearing so much about," he walked up to her in three quick strides down the staircase and into the sitting room before engulfing her a tight hug. Jasmine felt tear prickle slightly at the corners of her eyes at hugging someone that she had considered a grandfather that she'd never gotten to meet. It was like a phantom dream come true.
She cleared her throat. "Yes, I'm Jasmine, it's a pleasure to meet you, sir," she replied a wobbly smile on her face.
He tweaked her nose, making her go cross-eyed for a moment. "Nonsense, call me Uncle Monty. Sir makes me feel rather old. I'm a wizard still in the prime of his life," he told her, his brown eyes dancing.
She nodded and opened her mouth to ask something, but James came flying down the stairs, his hair a mess and a letter clenched tightly in hand, some ink staining his pale fingers. He seemed excited, especially when he came bounding up to Jasmine and pulled her in for another hug.
Jasmine had never really received too much physical contact in any of the lives she'd had, well maybe except the first two, she'd married and had children in those. But, after living your life nine times, love became an obstacle more than something enjoyable. She always had the single goal of repopulating the wizarding world, or just figuring out a way to stop everyone from dying out, which was to stop this war from happening.
She held back a sigh, knowing that it would be out of place in this moment, but she just wished she wasn't tasked with this burden alone. She'd had a plethora of friends in other lives, Theo, Blaise, Hermione, George and Fred had always been there for her in all her lives. She was going to miss them this time around.
Now, she was in a time period she wasn't familiar with and fighting a Voldemort that was saner and therefore more powerful than ever before. But, she could save so many people from destroying themselves, maybe even bring some families back together.
She returned James' hug with a light squeeze, silently vowing that no one near her was going to have to suffer like they had in her original timeline. She was going to make sure of that, even if it meant going against fate to do so.
"Hey, Jazz! Let me take you to your room and then I can show you all the different pranking products that-"
His mother interrupted him mid-sentence. "James, we talked about this. Jasmine needs time to settle in and then she needs to do her school work. Headmaster Dumbledore has given her some extra school work to make sure that she is adequately prepared for the Hogwarts workload."
James pouted and Jasmine groaned thinking about all the extra work she was going to need to make up just so she could attend Hogwarts come September. She was barely going to have any time to rest.
And, for the next two weeks, all she did was work. She spent all of her time in the Potter Manor library with her books spread out around her. The smell of old paper and polished wood permeated the air. Light was coming through stained-glass windows in bright reds, oranges and golds.
Jasmine sat in a far corner of the library, a large oak desk in front of her as the late afternoon late came in from behind her. In front of her were school books, while others were family Peverell family grimoires that she had taken out of her locket. They held secrets to her magic and her family that only she could know as the last of the Peverell line. Jasmine had never gotten to see the Peverell family secrets before, even though Death had chosen her as his master, these books had been lost with the original Jasmine. And, oh, was she finding interesting information about the Peverell family. Death had created the Elder wand for the intent that the family use it to kill Dark and Light Lords that were attempting to tip the balance of magic. She hadn't really expected that of the elder wand's history. No wonder it was meant for the Master of Death. With a raised eyebrow she turned the page and kept reading putting her parchment and quill to the side.
She had finished most of her school work, the main issue was that she couldn't do the practical since she didn't have a wand. She hadn't spoken to either Euphemia or Monty about it. She wasn't quite sure how to approach either of them about getting a wand. Euphemia was always running back and forth to work, and Monty was in his lab creating things all day for his business.
So, she decided to work on her rune work and everything that didn't require wand waving. It wasn't that she couldn't do it non-verbally and without a wand, but that would seem out of place for a nearly fifteen-year-old witch to accomplish. Potions had become a side hobby since quite a few potions didn't require a wand, just precise hands and careful measurements. Monty had been more than pleased to see that someone else in the family was interested in potions. He had mentioned it more than once at the dinner table. It seemed to bring a smile to Euphemia's face seeing her husband as happy as he was.
James hadn't noticed her wandless predicament, but then again, he'd been busy sending frantic letters to Sirius all week.
The Black heir hadn't been over since he'd visited her in the hospital and James was beginning to worry about his best mate. Jasmine hadn't voiced her opinion, but she knew from future knowledge that Sirius' family life was less than ideal, but she wasn't going to tell James that because explaining herself would cause more problems than explaining how she knew.
She kept her silence, instead reading up on different runes it wasn't until mid-July that Euphemia asked Jasmine what she wanted for her birthday, which was still the 31st of July. "A wand," she replied quietly over breakfast.
The three Potters stopped eating at the same time. "I thought you got your effects back from the Chester Manor?" Monty asked hesitantly.
Maybe she shouldn't have brought it up…
There was no going back now. "I wasn't allowed a wand. All fighters were expected to use wandless magic or our fists. Wands would make it too easy to escape."
"Why didn't you say something about not having a wand?" James asks indigently, slamming a hand down on the table.
Jasmine involuntarily flinched, and Euphemia sent James a deadly glare. "We'll go to Ollivander's and get you a wand. James, you mentioned that Sirius was coming over this evening?"
James nodded, twiddling his thumbs. He was hiding something, that much Jasmine was sure of, and Jasmine could tell that Euphemia and Monty knew it as well.
Ollivander's was the same as she remembered, dusty with stacks of wands. She could feel the magic in the air of untapped potential of each wand. Ollivander himself was quite a bit younger, his hair wasn't as grey, but his eyes were still wide and all knowing. "Ah, Euphemia, is this the new ward that I have been hearing about?"
The Auror nodded, "yes, and she requires a wand."
So, the game of getting a wand began. Stacks and stacks of wands were brought before her and none seemed to be her match. Her old holly wand was brought before her and nothing happened, which was a something of a shock for her. Well, she wasn't a horcrux this time around, which was a pleasant change. She hated needing to die to rid herself of it in her past.
"Tricky customer, eh? Let me think…"
He paused for a moment before looking Jasmine over once more. He seemed to be looking at her left eye and shivered. Ollivander went into the back of store and came out with another box. She could feel the magic thrumming within it.
This was definitely the wand for her. Ollivander carefully opened the box and inside was an elegantly crafted honey hewed wand. "Walnut, 12 ¾ inches, threstral hair. For a witch that survived death through clever wits, I believe this may be the wand for you."
The second her hand touched the wand a powerful wave of magic rushed through the room and grey sparks erupted from the wand. "Ollivander, sir, how did you manage to get a hair from a threstral? They're rather shy creatures from what I've read."
It wasn't often that people would even attempt to find the lovely misunderstood creatures that were threstrals. Ollivander gave her a tight-lipped grin. "My dear, this wand is one of the few that I haven't made myself. It was given to me by a friend many years ago."
Jasmine swore she felt Death's cold hand on her shoulder and resisted the shiver that wanted to make its way up her spine. It seemed that Death was setting things up behind the scenes. At least she had someone helping her this time around.
"Ah, I see. Well, when you see him again, tell him thank you for me. It's a lovely wand," she replied, slipping the wand into a holster that Euphemia demanded that she put on, because no child under her care was going to have their wands in their pants. Jasmine had nearly burst out laughing wondering if she trained Moody sometime in the near future.
"That will be five galleons, since I didn't make it myself, I see no reason to charge you the full price." Euphemia nodded, putting the gold coins on the counter and steering Jasmine out of the store.
The sun out when they left, a nice change to the constant rain that had plagued the area for the last few weeks. "Now, Jasmine, why don't we get you a real birthday present now? I know that your birthday isn't for another week, but I figure while we're here I should get you something."
The, "after all, you have so little," went without saying. So, Jasmine attempted to figure out what she could want. She hadn't been asked in over six years what she'd want for a present. Not since her aunt gave her that stuffed wolf for her ninth birthday.
"I wouldn't mind a pet, if that's alright. I know James doesn't have one, so someone might be allergic, but-"
"James has a lovely barn owl named Alfred. You don't see him because the house-elves take care of him. Is there a certain kind of pet you would want? Hogwarts allows toads, owls and cats, so choose wisely."
Euphemia chuckled and put a strong hand on Jasmine's shoulder and let her to the same store Hagrid had taken her to through many of her lives. Her beautiful Hedwig wouldn't be here, not for quite some time and Jasmine felt that if she got an owl she'd be cheating on her unborn snowy owl. She'd wait till 1991 and pick up Hedwig then, but until that happened she'd need to find a new companion to spend her lonely days with.
So, she gravitated towards the cats, the black ones in particular. They were considered omens of bad luck, and Death seemed to like them well enough. He always tended to like clever animals. Of course, the store had dozens of kittens, but none of them seemed to catch her fancy. They were cute, but they didn't seem to have the intelligence that she had found in Hedwig.
Her eyes eventually caught a small black feline in the very back of the shop hiding on top of a bookshelf filled with different assortments of animal food. The little creature was still young, maybe only just old enough to be sold in stores. It had mismatched eyes much like her own, one green and the other grey. It wasn't completely black, it had a single white paw and a white tip to its swaying tale.
They locked eyes for a single moment before the kitten jumped down and gracefully landed on Jasmine's shoulders, small claws digging into her skin.
"Ah, she came down for you? That cat has been a right pain since she came here. We got that little monster from Austria, apparently she was bred with some kind of magical leopard and was the runt of the litter," the store owner explained, eyeing the little cat warily as it purred and wove its way through Jasmine's hair. Was this woman expecting the kitten to attack her at any moment?
"Is that kitten dangerous?" Euphemia asked in disbelief as Jasmine gave a gentle stroke down its back. The kitten nearly went boneless in bliss.
"It can be, if it feels threatened. The leopard it was bread with was known for disappearing into the snow and mauling its prey. But, I doubt that thing is going to grow very much. I'll sell it for ten sickles," she responded, a hopeful gleam in her eyes at the idea of getting the animal out of her shop.
Jasmine had to resist the grin that wanted to spread across her face. This little kitten could hide like she could under the invisibility cloak? A perfect companion for Death's Master. "I'm going to call you Ro," short for Rowena in honor of Rowena Ravenclaw, for those that don't ask about her name will never receive the wisdom of the meaning behind it. The kitten purred in response and Jasmine felt a bit of magic wash over her, it was chilled like fresh snow and the kitten looked at her with knowing eyes.
Good, that cat knew what it was dealing with. It would have been difficult explaining to an animal that it was living with the Master of Death. It tended to be something that animals sensed innately in her, while humans floundered about and would never know the difference. Well, until it was too late.
Regardless, they paid for the kitten and some supplies to keep it happy and went back to the manor without fuss, much to the shop keeper's astonishment. When they arrived in the main foyer a large trunk greeted them as well as a windswept and exhausted Sirius Black with James nowhere in sight. He was three and a half hours early and by the concerned look on Euphemia's face this wasn't a normal occurrence.
"Sirius, what are you doing here? Does your mother know that you're here?"
Sirius let out an animalistic snarl, but there were unshed tears in his eyes. "I've been disowned, blasted off the family tapestry. So, no, my mother doesn't know where I am, but she doesn't really care."
Euphemia rushed over to him and wrapped him in a tight embrace. Jasmine saw his shoulders shaking and excused herself from the room. Sirius wouldn't want her to see him like that. So, she did the next best thing and went to find James.
Though, half way to her room she remembered she was holding a large cat carrier and bags of litter and cat food. Jasmine let Ro into her room first, letting the kitten get used to her new surroundings before continuing her search for her cousin.
It wasn't too difficult to find him. Much like his father, all you had to do was listen for the explosions or loud crashes and they tended to be nearby and a thud came from James' room, followed by, "Bugger! Shite!" and then another crash, she knew she was in the right place.
Jasmine figured that while knocking was more polite, James might genuinely need help. She put a tentative hand on the door knob pushing her magic out to see if he'd placed any charms on his door, he hadn't, so she turned the knob and opened the door.
She had to actively bite her lip to stop herself from bursting out laughing. Someone botched up his Animagus transformation, because James currently had a rather impressive rack of antlers on top of his head. He was currently in front of his mirror, his wand pointed at the antlers, but nothing was happening.
"Do you need some help?" She asked her voice lilting, laughter ringing in her voice. She was leaning against his doorframe. He jumped bringing his arms towards his antlers to cover them.
It was sufficient to say that it didn't work.
"Jazz, what are you doing here?"
"I heard crashing and rather foul language, usually that spells trouble. Is there a reason you have antlers?" She replied, walking up to James and poking the antlers and he recoiled.
"Look, just pretend that you didn't see anything and I'll figure out how to fix this on my own."
This wasn't the time for James to act like he had any idea what he was doing. Did he realize how dangerous practicing to transform without anyone present was? By the distraught look on his face, she figured he might have learned his lesson.
Jasmine sighed, hands on her hips. She moved closer to him once more ignoring his squawk of protest and waved her wand, making the antlers disappear. James patted his head, once…twice before giving her an incredulous look. "It was a partial Animagus transformation, correct? I was reading about that in my transfiguration textbook. Is there a reason that you are practicing extremely volatile magic on your own?"
James worried his lip between his teeth as he formulated an answer. "Sirius and I have a bet going about who can do it first. I thought that I had it-"
She was honestly surprised that James gave that much information away, but Jasmine supposed that he had been caught red handed. At least he hadn't been caught by his parents. She couldn't image that would have gone over well with Euphemia. "Don't practice that kind of magic alone next time, alright? I don't care how illegal it is, I don't want to see you get hurt over it," she interrupted him midsentence, "also, Sirius is in the main hall, something happened with his family."
James didn't wait for her to say anything else before he sprinted towards the entrance without a backward glance.
Jasmine sighed and made her way back to her bedroom. She'd call a house-elf later in the evening for food. She didn't want to disturb Sirius or James or Euphemia and Monty. They all had enough to deal with. No matter how welcoming they were, she was still a bit wary of trying to get close to them. Even as Harri, she had never managed to get really close to anyone in a parental sense besides Sirius. She also didn't want to cross paths with Euphemia, who Jasmine heard screaming through the floo at Sirius' mother for nearly thirty straight minutes.
Jasmine wouldn't want to be on the receiving end of her temper and kept to herself. She really didn't want to deal with anyone's anger when her injuries were only just healing, and while she didn't think that anyone here would hurt her on purpose, she wasn't going to take a chance when they were all worked up.
No one came to her room to ask why she didn't come to eat or just see if she was feeling alright. Around seven she called for a house-elf to her room that brought her a bit of roast beef and some dark greens from dinner.
She ate in silence, with only Ro for company, but she was sound asleep on her pillow. It was in lonely moments like these that she missed Death. She had always thought that if she had lived with her grandparents she wouldn't have been bored or ignored, but she still felt like a guest here, even though she has been living here for nearly three weeks. But, maybe part of it was her fault. She wasn't seeking them out and they didn't want to drive her away. She had been isolated for so long in so many lives…it was hard to reach out.
Another hour passed with nothing changing besides the setting sun. Jasmine sighed, she needed air. She frowned, looking outside, she could see the moon beginning to peak out, so at least she could go and sit on the roof. It was moments like these when she missed flying, but no broom would be able to match the speed of a firebolt for another few decades.
The house was silent as she made her way to the staircase that would take her to the roof entrance. She turned the worn brass handle and expected to embrace the cool evening air. When she opened the door she found a wand pointed at her throat and the furious bloodshot eyes of Sirius Black greeted her.
He was nearly a full head taller than her, which brought her to his pale and exposed collarbone. In another world she would have been afraid of Sirius pointing a wand at her in a nightmare driven haze from his Azkaban days, this Sirius didn't have years of Auror training, he was a scared little boy. She could stop him if she had to, so she waited for him to make the first move.
Though, when he realized who she was he nearly dropped his wand in shock and embarrassment. "Buggering hell, what are you doing up here?" He snapped, arms crossed, as he tapped his foot.
Was he expecting her to leave? Such an impatient little pureblood. Well, she was going to disappoint him. She had come up here for a reason and just because he was in a foul mood didn't mean she had to suffer because of it.
She brushed passed him, causing him to almost stagger back. Jasmine had fought opponents much larger and won without incident. Sirius was no trouble at all. She sat down in front of the rail, legs hanging over the edge between the bars, her face pressed into slightly worn rusted metal. She could sense a gaggle of gargoyles on her left and Sirius just standing there not moving. It seemed she left him speechless.
It brought a small smile to her face.
"You can sit down, you know. I don't bite unless provoked," Jasmine said, her voice only just loud enough for Sirius to hear. She sensed him tense up before his shoulders sagged and he joined her on the edge. Gravel crunched under his boots…was he stomping? What a child…
His legs were quite a bit longer and he knocked into her feet as he settled down next to her, a bit too close for comfort, but that was Sirius. She noticed that his arms were lined with bruises and some shallow cuts. Jasmine could feel the dark magic coming off the injuries.
What had his mother done to him before he'd left?
Why had no one offered to heal him? Then she noticed that he had rolled his sleeves up, more than likely to assess the damage.
She heard a sniffle come from him as he poked his arm, but didn't acknowledge it. She had noticed that his eyes had been a bit red, but if he was going to live here, he was going to need to get used to her presence. Jasmine wasn't one to let people push her around, nor did she enjoy seeing people in pain.
"You know, if you want to send a curse package to your family, I know quite a few undetectable ones. Might give your mother that heart attack you spoke about the day we met."
Sirius gave her a watery chuckle, but when he replied there was only venom in his voice. "What do you know about my family?"
She shrugged, "Well, Euphemia was screaming loud enough to wake the dead. I figured somethings out on my own, not to mention your arm. I doubt you did that to yourself," she replied evenly. She wasn't going to rise to Sirius' temper.
"Sorry that you heard…that. I think everyone forgot that you were here," he said, and Jasmine flinched at the admission. She had been worried about that, but that wasn't why Sirius had said it, he was trying to hurt her. Sirius was lashing out. She was something different and new that could take James' attention away from him.
"Well, I am here, and I know quite a bit about purebloods holding you captive and using curses as a way of punishment. You escaped, Sirius, you should be proud of yourself for leaving."
His hands clenched on the rail, his nails biting into the rust, his hands spasming unnaturally. "I didn't leave, I was cast out. I've lost my home! I was blasted off the family tapestry!"
And there was where his true anger was lied.
"Did your father disown you? He's the Head of House of Black, right? He should be the only one with the authority to cast you out. You still wear your Heir ring, which would have disappeared otherwise. At least, that's what I understand about pureblood politics," she said slowly, waiting for the explosion. She flexed her right hand, her family ring glinting in the fading evening light.
She didn't get the angry response she had been expecting. Instead, she got a loud and long sigh. Sirius turned his head towards her, probably looking at her left eye, expecting her to return his eye contact. She did eventually turn to face him, he was giving her a rather inquisitive look. It was angry, but slightly confused, as if no one had even thought of telling him to talk to his father.
"My father is away on business for the summer and by the time he gets back my mother will have him convinced that I'm the monster she always claimed. There is nothing that I can do," he muttered, pouting a bit by the end.
There was an easy solution to this that he probably hadn't considered. "Have you tried sending a letter to your father?"
"No, the Potters are taking me in. I'm not going back there. It's better if I'm not heir. Regulus would be a better Head to the Black family. He's what the family wants."
"Is he what your family needs? There has to be a reason that your father hadn't disowned you previous if you're so different…"
Sirius snarled. "He doesn't care. I'm. Not. Going. Back."
Jasmine forgot that she was dealing with a teenager…a teenage Sirius Black on top of that. He had told her that he had been stubborn as teen. She hadn't really believed what her godfather had told her until now. Uniting the Black family was something that Jasmine needed to do to bring the other purebloods to her side.
"I never said to go back. You could always stay here, but if you are still legally the Heir to the Black family, you should tell your father that your mother abused-"
"I was not abused!" He snapped.
Alright, denial it is.
"You've been twitching all evening. Cruciatus curse damage is considered abuse. It gets people sent to Azkaban. Just because you can't see the damage it doesn't mean it isn't real," she said, her voice barely above a whisper.
He slammed a hand on the rail, causing rust to flake off. "What the hell do you know?"
She waved a hand in front of her left eye and motioned to the rune next to it. "I wasn't born blind in one eye, Sirius. My patrons liked to throw curses at me when I wasn't getting a spell right. More than once they would be curses that would attack my nerves, never leaving me a mark. There was one day I didn't move away quick enough when a curse came hurtling towards my face. It was a variation of a cutting hex. I suppose that being sick with the flu didn't count as an excuse to get out of a four-hour training session and I suffered for it. I lost my eye. Madam Chester complained the entire time that I wouldn't be able to fight for them anymore and cursed me silent as she permanently burned a rune into my side of face to gain back some monetary value into their merchandise."
Sirius' gaze lingered on the rune etched next to her eye. It would never fade, a permanent reminder of what happened to her, not to mention the scars across her face. "Did they cause the…" he motioned to the scar over her eye and mouth.
So nosy, but he the genuine curiosity on his face was rather endearing. She traced the scars on her face. "no, those were parting gifts from the death eaters…the healers still aren't sure what curses were used to make them, but all they know is that I'm very lucky to be alive after that fight and six years under the Chester's…tender…care," she explained, kicking her feet a bit, enjoying the feel of nothing under them.
They sat in silence for a while, neither moving from their spots, just watching the moon rise. A breeze picked up causing her to shiver slightly. Sirius was poking his arms again and winced every time he found a sensitive area. "Is there a reason you haven't gotten those looked at?"
The Black Heir gave her a rather intense glare, as if daring her ask again. She raised an eyebrow and stood her ground. He sighed, "I didn't want James to know what my mother did. He'd make a big deal out of it."
Jasmine ran a hand through her hair, wincing when it caught a tangle. She really needed to cut it, but pushed those thoughts out of her mind. "I have some potions that should help with the bruises and cuts. But, if the tremors don't stop in an hour, we need to tell Euphemia or Monty. They'll need to take you to a healer to get the damage assessed. Cruciatus curse exposure can cause permanent nerve damage, which could ruin your chances in a multitude of careers."
Sirius recoiled at the thought and pushed himself up, and offered a hand to her. "Just don't tell anyone."
She nodded, but didn't promise. She was going to talk to Euphemia about it, she needed to know that Walburga had abused Sirius to the point that he needed to run away. She put her callused hand in his and they made their way back into the manor. They had a tentative partnership. Hopefully it would last.
Did you like it? =3 I really enjoy writing Sirius. I believe that everyone's favorite werewolf is going to be introduced in the next chapter. I'm having an interesting time making sure that Jasmine is characterized correctly when it comes to her being unsure of how to deal with parental affection or even asking anyone for help. I feel like it's accurate, since she has been abused in so many lifetimes, not to mention the memories of the previous inhabitant of the body she's using.
This chapter was a monster to edit. I know that this is going up a bit earlier than usual, but I have a work shift from 5:30pm to 11:00pm. I won't get home till nearly midnight and at that point I'm going to way too tired to upload stuff.
I also wanted to tell you thank you to everyone how has followed, reviewed and alerted these past few weeks. I have been taken aback by the sheer support that you all have been showing me. =) I hope you all continue to stick around. I love hearing from you all. Thanks again.
Have a great holiday,