A/N- Well, we're approaching the end; only four chapters left after this one. If you haven't author alerted, and you want to read the coming sequel, I suggest you do so, because it might be a little while before I actually begin posting the sequel. I don't mean like, a long time, but it won't be right away. I want to have some of the chapters already written before I begin posting, plus I'll be working on a Sherlock fan fiction.
Also, I meant to have this typed up earlier, but I honestly just kind of got lazy… But here it is, and I apologize for lateness!
Anyway, enjoy the chapter!
Chapter 46: The Waiting Game
"Alright, honestly, why are you so happy? There is no reason to be happy." I drummed my fingers against my leg, fidgeting against the back of the armchair I was sitting in. Fred was stretched out across the couch, much to the displeasure of a pair of third years. His hands were rested comfortably behind his head, and he was grinning like he'd won a million galleons. The reason for his cheerful demeanor escaped me.
"Dunno," he said. "I've just got a good feeling.
"About what?" I asked incredulously. "What is there to have a good feeling about? Everything has gone to part since the term started!"
I wasn't exaggerating; since we'd gotten back from the Christmas holiday, nothing had been going well. Along with copious amounts of class time with Hufflepuffs and Slytherins and Monday's detention, we'd gotten another detention for PDA, got yelled at for missing two transfiguration essays, got another detention for skiving potions, usual crap from the three Hufflepuffs who had made it their mission to ruin our lives, another detention for getting into a yelling match with a Slytherin, and lost a total of at least 100 points from Gryffindor. There was no time to be happy.
"If I knew, I'd tell you," he said and sat up. "I just feel like now that we've had an all-around bad week, it'll all be uphill from here."
"I think you mean, 'it'll all be downhill from here'," I corrected him. He waved it off.
"Would you feel better if I told you that I don't think Kate is pregnant?" he asked, facing me.
"Unless you have hard evidence and facts, no, not really," I crossed my arms.
"Er, no facts or evidence, but I do believe I share the gift of women's intuition."
"Yeah, I mean, how would she know after just a week?" he threw his hands in the air. "I'm no anatomist, but I'm fairly sure that it takes longer than a bloody week to know for sure."
"But she took a… pregnancy test thing," I retorted. "And besides, she never said she knew for sure."
"Exactly! So it was probably a false alarm!" Fred exclaimed.
"I guess we'll know for sure this summer," I clucked my tongue and sucked in my breath.
"Perhaps sooner," he winked.
"Sooner? Need I remind you, oh fountain of knowledge, that I have no way of getting in contact with Kate. The waiting game is on," I sighed heavily. Fred adopted a smug smirk. "Alright, you obviously know something I don't know."
"I never said that."
"You don't have to say it, you might as well be holding a massive sign that says 'I have a secret'," I rolled my eyes. "Given the situation, I'm slightly worried."
Fred moved over to the edge of the sofa closest to me, and leaned over the arm. "What if I told you that I found out a way to get in contact with her?" he asked mischievously.
"I'd ask what law you broke."
"I didn't break any laws. I didn't even break any school rules," he said with a smirk.
"Shocking," I said sarcastically. "I thought we were being hypothetical?"
"Oh, of course, completely hypothetical. So let's say… hypothetically, that I wrote out a note, gave it to a school owl, sent it to Bill along with a separate note specifying a place to deliver the other note? And what if that specific place happened to be the workplace of a certain black-haired girl whose name rhymes with 'fate'?" Fred was practically vibrating with excitement.
I blinked. "You sent a note to Kate? Legally?" I asked, almost unable to form a coherent sentence.
"Well, not directly, but for all intents and purposes, yes," he smiled.
"You're not angry with me are you?" he winced.
No! Fred, you are a genius! I can't believe I didn't think of something like that!" I grinned. I lept from the armchair and pulled Fred up into a hug.
"My brilliance is a gift," he chuckled.
"What did the note say?" I asked, my hands still on his shoulders.
"I just asked how she's doing, how school and work are going, you know. I told her that Bill will be by at the end of the month to get her reply so that she can confirm her pregnancy or not," he explained.
"That's terrifying…" I realized. "That means in two weeks I'm going to know if I'm a father or not…" Fred pressed his lips together and nodded solemnly. "Wait, did you sign it from you?" I asked. Fred technically wasn't supposed to know about Kate's situation. Then again, she really shouldn't have expected me to keep it from him, of all people.
"No, I signed it from you," he assured me. "But I honestly don't think she would have been mad if it had been from me," he shrugged.
"So I'm guessing this is why you're so chipper?" I asked, smiling lightly.
"You bet," he grinned.
"And now we wait?"
"Now we wait."
Waiting turned out to be easier said than done. I was constantly distracted by the thought of what Kate's answer would be, and what I would do. Her dad's reaction came to the front of my mind, and I nearly had a panic attack. IF her dad was as bad as he sounded, I shuddered to think about what he would do to Kate when he found out if she was pregnant. Would he let her keep it? Would he hurt her? Kick her out? It's not like she would be able to hide it from him for long. This led to a whole new branch of thought as far as what my parents would say, but that was a worry for another time. These thoughts forced a wave of overwhelming guilt to crash over me. Fred could tell me all he wanted that I wasn't at fault, but the fact of the matter was that anything bad that happened to Kate would be a result of my actions. Several times I worried that Kate's father would do some sort of irreversible damage to her. I relayed these worries to Fred, and though he seemed concerned, he advised me not to dwell on them.
The days dragged by at an agonizingly slow pace, and it drove me mad. Lessons had always sort of been low on my list of priorities, but now that I had a myriad of other things to add to the list, they had drifted even further from my mind. Fred had actually taken it upon himself to start taking notes, much to my surprise, so that I wouldn't fail tests. Even friends had fallen to the wayside, which didn't go unnoticed. I had taken to going immediately up to the dorms after lessons and dinner. Fred began referring to me as the "Hermit of Gryffindor". It caught on fast.
Hermione questioned me whenever she could catch me, but I gave her the same sorts of answers each time: that I'm fine, nothing's wrong, I just need to get some sleep. I could tell that she didn't believe a word, but she didn't press the matter. I foresaw a long uncomfortable conversation in the future.
I jerked out of my thoughts. I was sitting on the sofa in the common room, and Fred was sitting next to me, giving me the look.
"You've been staring at the fireplace for over an hour. Are you blind yet?" he clucked his tongue and waved a hand in front of my eyes. I snorted and checked my watch; it was almost eleven. I didn't even remember sitting down. It was Thursday night, so everyone was already in bed.
"No, not blind. Just multi-colored dots floating in my peripheral," I chuckled. Fred smiled, but it looked forced.
"If I wasn't worried about you before, then I am now," he said. "Actually, I was worried before, so I'm a bit on edge now. You've sort of checked out, and I'd really like for you to come back."
"Sorry, I'm just a bit preoccupied," I grimaced.
I sucked in my breath and squeezed my eyes shut, willing all the things I'd been worrying about to disappear. It didn't work quite as well as I wanted it to, but my mind was clearer than it was before. Small victories, I suppose. I opened my eyes and exhaled.
"You've got my full attention. I'm checked in," I smiled, and rearranged myself so that I was facing him completely. He had one foot on the ground, and the other on the couch with his knee drawn up.
"You sure?" he asked, giving me another pointed look, eyebrows raised.
"Yes!" I laughed.
"Good," Fred grinned, and moved himself forward. He sat himself directly in front of me, put his hand on my shoulder, and pulled me forward into a kiss. He carded his other hand through my hair and pressed his lips firmly to mine. I had no problem dispelling the rest of my worries, at least for the moment. The hand on my shoulder snaked around to the nape of my neck, and he moved his lips softly against mine, keeping it strictly closed mouth. He pulled back for a moment and pondered me.
"You're not thinking of another woman are you?" he inquired, feigning jealousy. I rolled my eyes and shook my head.
"You're the only woman I'm thinking of," I said endearingly.
"I oppose the decision that I'm the woman!" he pouted, and stoked my hair, flattening the fringe.
"But you do girly thing like that," I chuckled. "And let's not forget that you yourself said that you share the gift of women's intuition," I added.
"Picky picky," he waved it away.
I shook my head in amusement. "Whatever," I giggled, and pulled him back to me by the front of his shirt. He grinned and straddled my lap. He threaded the fingers of his left hand through my hair, and his other hand came to rest at the side of my neck, as he brought our lips together again.
"I love you, you know that?" he mumbled against my lips. "Even though you're an idiot."
"Even geniuses make mistakes, but that doesn't make them idiots," I replied smartly.
"Oh, so now you're a genius?" he snickered.
"I've always been a genius. You've said so yourself on numerous occasions."
"Are you sure I wasn't talking about myself?"
I rolled my eyes and playfully shoved him away, moving to sit on the opposite side of the couch. "Positive," I said.
Fred yawned. "Merlin, I'm tired."
"Yeah, I'll bet. Being a smart-ass is hard work, isn't it?" I stood up off the sofa and offered him a hand. He accepted, and pulled himself up.
"It's a thankless job," he smirked. "But somebody's got to do it."
"Right," I snorted. "Well I'm going to bed. You coming?"
"Yes dear," Fred replied, sounding like a man stuck in a monotonous marriage with a boring house wife. I shook my head and smiled.
"So what sort of benefits do you get?" I asked as I walked up the stairs. "Working as a smart-ass and all."
"Oh, you would be surprised," he winked, and followed me up.
A/N- Repo! The Genetic Opera reference, anyone?
Hopefully the next chapter will be up sooner, but I'm not setting anything in stone.
Hope you enjoyed! :D