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Fleur Delacour

Family

Fleur Delacour

Blue Fleur

Family

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Smug white smile
“You have to get these back to me quickly, or Babette will suspect something,” Aveline sets a small stack of hand-bound antique books on my desk. “I told her I needed them for family name research in order to name the baby.” I glide my fingers across the faded leather cover of the top book and inhale the musty smell of the old tomes and am taken back in my mind’s eye to my days at Beauxbatons, sitting in the library, pouring over thick books of charms and spells between classes.

“But zese, zey are my mozzer’s records, ‘er Veela ancestors,” I reply, not even looking up at Aveline. “Not ze Rousseau line of ze Veela.” When I finally look up, Aveline’s dark eyes meet mine.

“I think Babette likes the idea of the baby having a name from her Veela heritage,” Aveline crosses her arms and leans against my desk. “She was happy about the idea. Didn’t need any persuasion at all.” I open the book that has now found its way into my hands and study the ancient writing, recognizing the language.

“Oui, eet is written in French,” I smile and breathe a sigh of relief. “I was concerned zat eet might be written in some ancient Eastern European language zat I would not be able to understand.” Aveline moves next to me and joins me in my examination of my Mère’s family records.

“There may exist some very old branch somewhere far, far down your family line,” she says over my shoulder as she pats my upper arm, “But that is for you to discover in your studies. How many days do you think you’ll need to reproduce the books for your own copies?” At her words I stare at the short stack that seemed small before she asked me that particular question. My expression must give away my unexpected dilemma. “Remember, they must be hand-copied, without the use of magic. It is part of the training process. But don’t worry too much; Gabrielle and I can help.”

“I do not ‘ave to do zis part alone?” I ask in disbelief. “Are you sure?”

“Yes,” she smiles as she tells me. “Your loved-ones can help you duplicate your records for your family copy.”

“Do zey ‘ave to be Veela to ‘elp?” I inquire. Aveline cocks her head to the side as if in thought.

“Actually,” she begins with a smirk of sneaky satisfaction, “No, they don’t have to be Veela. My Aunt Volette helped me to hand copy my ancestry…and, believe it or not, Charlie Weasley did too, back at Hogwarts. He kept complaining about having to do it by hand, wondering what it was he was copying. I just told him it was a special project for Arithmancy and that kept him quiet, at least for a while. So yes, Bill can help you, if that’s what you want to know. He should be quite adept at transcribing ancient texts. He ought to get kick out of the task.”

“So,” I knowingly look at Aveline, “Zis man, Charlie Weasley, you loved ‘im back when you were at ze ‘ogwarts, non?” She rolls her eyes at my question.

“Just get the volumes back to me as soon as you can,” she changes the subject, “No more than a week, Fleur, that’s all the time I can give you and not make your mother suspicious. She’d have a fit if she knew the real reason I borrowed them.”

“No more zan a week,” I reply as she heads toward the door, “I promise.”



Hours later, after a light supper of fruit and cheese and bread, I find myself sitting at the kitchen table of the cottage, diligently copying my family history. I must get Gabrielle to help me. I shall speak to her tomorrow… The light from the candle flickers as I place the quill next to the ink pot and rub my aching hand. Bill is working late tonight, one of his curse-breaking assignments. I only hope he comes home uninjured this time. Last week he came home after a long day, with a nasty slice across the palm of his left hand. The wound healed more slowly than I had liked and I found myself wishing for one of my Mère’s Veela Healers to close the cut sooner than the twenty-four hours it took to seal…

“I ‘ope zis man, Blackfoot, I ‘ope he gives you ‘azard pay to make up for injuries,” I complained to Bill as he squirmed at the salve I rubbed into the cut before I brought his hand up to my mouth to softly blow against the hurt skin. Bill did not squirm after that…ma Déesse, when he stares at me that way…

The gentle click of the kitchen door as it shuts snaps me from my thoughts as Bill turns and gives me a smile of pleasant surprise.

“Up so late?” he asks as he hangs his summer cloak on the peg next to the door before coming over to examine my handiwork. “Homework, or something of the sort?” He pulls a chair away from the table and spins it around so he can drape his long legs on either side of the back of it before he leans crossed arms on it. “These are the books, aren’t they?” He takes one of the volumes and look through it reverently. “Your family history…Merlin, Fleur, these must go back over a thousand years.”

“Two-thousand-one-‘undred, actually,” I reply with a satisfied smile. I know he is fascinated with ancient texts and these books, they belong to my family, they are my family. He whistles his amazement before I speak again. “And I ‘ave a week to copy zem all.”

“That’s nothing, a few quick spells…”

“By ‘and, and in less zan a week,” I tell him and he stops to stare at me in astonishment.

“You’re kidding, right?”

“Zat is all ze time Aveline could give me,” I look around at the enormity of my predicament. “Ozzerwise Mère might grow suspicious.”

“I can help you transcribe, can’t I?” He rights his chair and pulls close to the table, where he takes one of my extra quills in hand. He deftly locates a stack of parchment and brings it to him. “Where can I start?” He looks over at me and I find myself smiling at his selflessness. “What?” he asks.

I hand him the volume to my left. He takes it and opens to the first page.

“Merci, mon loup.”

He looks up from the text and returns my smile.
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