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09 October 2007 @ 04:12 pm
Hunt  
Title: Hunt
Author: pinkhairedauror
Rating & Warnings: R to be on the safe side. It may be a bit high, but there's disturbing imagery...
Prompts: Day of Trembling; Blood replentishing potion; genre Horror or Gen; Location protmp: 4 (sunset forest)
Word Count: 1 729, says Word
Summary: Remus assured Tonks he'd found someplace to get the potion, and she could stay with her mum after (DH spoiler event) for another week. He didn't expect the quality to be that much lower though.
Author’s Notes: OK, this is my first post here, and, more importantly, first try at horror. Please don't be too angry with me if it's not horrible enough... And any feedback is much appreciated.
And thanks to r_moony for betaing. And for everything.


She knew something was wrong as soon as she opened the door, called out his name, and was only answered by the clank of a window against a wall in the wind. He always needed rest on the day after a transformation so he might've been asleep, but he'd never leave a window open like that.

And, as she shortly found out, he wasn't in the bedroom.

Nor in the spare room where he would sleep the full moon night away. It was there that the window was open.
Broken.

I should have returned sooner.

But he had insisted he was fine, and had found someplace to buy the potion, and that she could - should - stay with her mother a week longer. And both Andromeda and herself had needed that extra time together.

Dad...

Her next stop was the kitchen, hoping that maybe she could find some of the potion to confirm - or, possibly, reject - her suspicion.

The baby kicked inside her, and she put her palm on her growing belly, breathed deeper, and tried to suppress the... anxiety.

Yes, the last dose was still visible on the table. Remus must've been tired indeed, not to dispose of it the day before. She sniffed at it. The smell seemed... as nauseating as always almost right. But a taste...

Too much yarrow. Not enough cat's nail.
Brewed too shortly.


The first two remarks - those could have resulted in an almost rightly working potion, although she always thought it just had to be done right.

But the last thing...

He transformed fully, last night.

Oi.


She cast a quick Reparo on the window and closed it with shaking fingers, then walked out and circled the cottage. He seemed to have run directly for the forest. She followed his tracks to the woods, then gave up when she lost them in a thicket just as her belly fairly lurched.

"All right, all right. Home, food, and rest for us, love." She voiced it out loud, both for the baby's sake and for her own... and, should Remus be nearby, as a chance for him to answer. Her eyes still searched the thicket with worry before she finally turned and walked back.

~~~

Remus knew the Wolfsbane, if just as foul, had a slightly odd taste, but he had to trust it was all right. Of course, having always been rather inept at potions, even this brew that he so depended on wasn't so familiar as to make him alarmed.

He didn't know how wrong he was until the transformation started and, instead of tucking the wolf away and curling to sleep, he was overpowered as the beast leaped through the window and vanished in the night.

There was some awareness. Just enough to observe, nowhere near to being able to try for control over his - the wolf's - body.

He ran to the forest swiftly, the movement relieving after the days of increasing immobility as fatigue had forced him to rest more and more extensively. The wind ruffled his fur... unlike the human who always fought, the wolf enjoyed running.

Hunting.

And tonight, there was something in the forest, something that smelled strong and dark and strange. And so the wolf had to catch it.

The first time he came upon it, the wolf leapt immediately. The fangs dug into the shoulder (Man-shape. Easy prey!) and started to tear at the flesh, when suddenly the arm threw him off with unexpected strength. A bit of too-long tooth caught the moonlight in a way that made Remus' awareness shout 'vampire!!!', but the wolf didn't care. Two more times he attacked and was thrown off, until the look in the creature's eyes made him realise suddenly that he wasn't the hunter anymore. He was the prey.

~~~

By early afternoon, her hope that he was just lying somewhere exhausted - but safe - and gathering his strength to return home had faded into a full-blown fear.

She put a loose-ended tracking spell on herself, then flooed to her mum, under the pretext of something forgotten (hah, surprise! There was so much that she had forgotten, it was almost a trouble to decide on what exactly to use as pretext...). She attached the loose end of the spell to Andromeda's house, with a set-up, should she fail to release it by nightfall, that it would make itself known to her mum - insistently known.

Then she returned home and set off for the woods.

~~~


So he ran. He ran across a moon-lit clearing, then through a thicker-undergrowth section, then he stopped to listen in the slight mist gathering among the trees. He heard the hunter after him for a moment, then the woods became quiet suddenly. Too quiet.

The wind had died down, leaving the smells of the forest to settle down, and now they assaulted his nose - late-winter decay, layer upon layer of dead leaves decomposing in the dampness since forever. Small animals scampering away from him, away from the hunt of the stronger predators.

And the other smell, faint but growing stronger. The Other seemed to wind his way towards the place where the wolf lay, making him unsure just where he was at any time. Only that he was drawing closer.

Then suddenly there was the noise of a branch snapping and the wolf bolted, only to be caught by two strong, clawed hands and to feel teeth digging into his throat, and unbearable pain.

The wolf clawed against his captor until one of his hind legs somehow caught and tore at his neck, making the vampire let him go in surprise.

Slightly dazed, the wolf whined, but then the other creature made to grab for him again, and he ran.

~~~

She finally found him as the sun was starting to set. He was lying on his side, curled around himself, unconscious. Alive, she quickly verified, but very, very cold. There were some bruises, but small twin bite marks under her fingers at his neck quickly let her know - not what had happened, but what she needed to do. They sent a chill down her spine, and only increased the shivering inside. She wrapped her arms about him to give off a bit of warmth, and apparated them directly to their bedroom.

There she levitated him on the bed, tucked him in and piled as many blankets as she could find on top. She would have joined him for more heat shared, but she had a potion to brew - this one would be done properly too!

DAMN the time I lost before going to find him! she thought as she released her end of the tracking spell that linked her to her mum's house, and headed down to the kitchen.

~~~

Deep inside the wolf's mind, Remus was panicking. And the wolf ran and ran.

If he died like this, what would happen with the war? With his baby? With ... Dora? He had to find a way to escape, to outwit the vampire, but the wolf wouldn't listen.

Merlin! I thought werewolves wouldn't die easily...

Not ever had he felt so helpless as when the wolf got himself cornered against three trees... and his consciousness was there, intact, just... not in control. Fool! I cannot fight a vampire! But the wolf was making a stand.

Forced to witness each smell that his transformed body caught of the approaching dark creature (other dark creature, he corrected himself); to hear every sound that the wolf's head turned after; to see every flickering shadow that might be the vampire, Remus felt like a man condemned. He couldn't run. He couldn't fight with the slightest chance of winning.

Now the vampire was playing. He knew the wolf wouldn't run anymore; he probably could smell some of the fear. And he probably knew that the bite already in would have weakened his prey. So he took his time.

Slowly, the circle of smell and motion narrowed. And suddenly the human-like shape swam out of the mist again. This time, the wolf leapt in self-defense, rather than attack; and was thrown off once more. Yet again he tried, and this time the slam against the tree stunned him for a moment, long enough for the vampire to reach him on his own terms. The wolf's teeth sank deep into the hand that grabbed for him, but the delay was only short and the creature laughed.

Then there was the pain again.

The vampire drank in long, slow, agonising draughts. Each of them seemed to tear at the wolf's limbs, at his insides, to drain him. Time and again came the pull, and the pain, and wolf howled helpless, then whined, then whimpered.

But it wasn't the vampire taking mercy that saved him.

The hunt had taken up most of the night, and the other dark creature became suddenly aware of the approaching sun. Between two pulls... possibly just a step away from finally finishing him off, the vampire dropped the wolf and ran, ran fast, for whatever cover he needed from the sun.

The wolf fell to his side and lay there, powerless to move, dazed from the loss of blood.

Then with the break of dawn came the transformation, and he screamed. It was a wolf's howl that turned into a human cry, and there was nobody to hear him.

HELP, he thought when he stopped screaming; his throat felt sore as did the rest of his body. And he could not utter another sound - no voice, no strength.

Dora...

He was cold, so cold he couldn't believe it. He couldn't move much, his limbs were too heavy to lift. He could still curl into himself, though even that was too much and he lost consciousness with the effort.

~~~

The blood-replenishing potion was a trifle rushed, but still done right. She fed it to him slowly, and semi-conscious as he was still, he clung to her as he sometimes did when he slept. Within minutes, the colour started returning to his cheeks; later, his breathing eased.

It wasn't till he opened his eyes and focused on her and whispered "Dora" in the night, that the trembling that had only grown since she saw him missing in the morning - finally started to subside.
 
 
Current Mood: scaredscared
 
 
 
doctor_banana: Tonks greendoctor_banana on October 9th, 2007 03:15 pm (UTC)
Very nice. It's really dark and quite disturbing in some scenes. It's written really well :)
Tonks: Two images casual clothingpinkhairedauror on October 9th, 2007 08:38 pm (UTC)
Thanks for the feedback, love. 'm glad you thought it was dark enough; not managing to make it Halloween-y enough was one of the things I was worried about.

And thanks for reading and the compliments. <3
(no subject) - doctor_banana on October 9th, 2007 09:06 pm (UTC) (Expand)
JD: Pumpkinslady_bracknell on October 9th, 2007 08:19 pm (UTC)
I liked this a lot.

It's so hard to try and capture the right pace in a story like this and retain that balance between creating a sense of mystery for readers and giving them enough info to follow - and you did that really well (it was a good choice to have them both narrating it, I thought). The pacing was just perfect - really made my heart speed up in anticipation of finding out what happened, and I thought you did really well trying to capture a sense of how Remus would feel and act as a wolf.

Nicely done :D.
Tonks: Lupin You're everythingpinkhairedauror on October 9th, 2007 08:36 pm (UTC)
:D thank you muchly!
Glad you did like!

Thank you for the feedback. I'm happy the pacing and the ... drive to read on worked. And that you enjoyed the switch in points of view. It was actually written separately - first her PoV (I'm writing Tonks, her part came more easily), then his, but the places where the breaks would be came along with each narrative.
And the wolf... I've seen a few Remus' takes on the wolf, and that's why I made sure to clarify that mine was an... exception. But even so, I tried to make it consistent and believable.

Thank you (and also? Thank you for being one of the people who're running this? <333 I'm loving it; tomorrow's the day when I'll almost have caught up with my work after a week's vacation, and I'll be reading the rest of the fictions too!)
(no subject) - lady_bracknell on October 9th, 2007 08:52 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - pinkhairedauror on October 10th, 2007 04:36 pm (UTC) (Expand)
Lioness of Ravenclaw: Lioness Leavesravnclw_lioness on October 10th, 2007 04:07 pm (UTC)
This was really great. The way you used your prompts was very creative and the vampire brought them all together nicely. I liked the way you never gave a graphic description of the vampire, but just enough for us to identify him. At least for me, things are always more frightening when left to my own imagination. The pacing and flow was very smooth, considering you were jusmping between narrators. And those narrators were dead on. A great job with everything!
Tonks: Metamorphic moon leavespinkhairedauror on October 10th, 2007 04:34 pm (UTC)
Thank you, so very much!

I'm... the vampire, if a crossover was allowed, I'd have used a specific one, but since I think very little is known about HP vampires, I wanted to leave it... vague. But I did borrow a fact that he'd be stronger than a transformed wolf. And if that isn't terrifying enough!

And thank you for the pacing and narration. Tonks is pretty loud in my imagination, and I've RP'ed a lot with various Remus versions (mostly, but not exclusively, the wonderful beta!) and I wanted to make them... real. As they are in my head.

Again, thank you for the praise, and for reading! <33
hrymfaxehrymfaxe on October 10th, 2007 10:22 pm (UTC)
I like this story very much, it caught up with me and sank it's teeth in! ;) Interesting twist with the vampire and the poorly brewed Wolfsbane potion, that left poor Remus aware but unable to act. What an awful situation!

Well done!
Tonks: Remus Tonks changing hairpinkhairedauror on October 10th, 2007 11:05 pm (UTC)
Thanks so much! :)

(oohh that hard? I really haven't written horror before, so this also means a lot!)

Remus trapped so... If he fully tells her about it, she'll be so upset. What she knows already is so bad enough...

Again, thanks for reading and commenting, and I'm glad you... enjoyed? Appreciated? :) That you approve!
Bratanimus: Remus Trainbratanimus on October 14th, 2007 02:21 pm (UTC)
Oh, wow. I've never read a story like this, and it was simply wonderful, very creative and haunting. I LOVED the twist of the hunter becoming the hunted, and how the Dark instinct and power of the vampire was even stronger than that of the werewolf's. Loved the alternating POVs, with the fear of the wolf and of Remus himself mixing with Tonks' fear. Really liked the sunrise saving Remus from the vampire; thank goodness Tonks found him before sunset the next night ... *shudder*

For some reason I really liked this: "All right, all right. Home, food, and rest for us, love." She voiced it out loud, both for the baby's sake and for her own... and, should Remus be nearby, as a chance for him to answer. It shows Tonks' courage as well as her fear all at once. Very nice. And of course the Auror in her would set a tracking spell before she set off to find him (smart girl ;)).

Liked this too: But he had insisted he was fine, and had found someplace to buy the potion, and that she could - should - stay with her mother a week longer. And both Andromeda and herself had needed that extra time together. Dad... Very succinct way of reminding us what has been happening in their lives, and why things are getting harder and harder for all of them. Nicely done.

And tonight, there was something in the forest, something that smelled strong and dark and strange. And so the wolf had to catch it. *shudder again* Very spooky. Loved the matter-of-fact voice the wolf has. That really works.

I really, really liked this. :)


Tonks: Team Lupin FTWpinkhairedauror on October 14th, 2007 03:31 pm (UTC)
Oh thank you very much for the detailed feedback!!!
... oh dear. I'd not even realised that the vampire would come back... and he would, wouldn't he! (OK, let me explain. I'm writing Tonks as a character, and she's very certain when she gives me fictions. Sometimes, she'll put in things that I don't exactly pay attention to, but they often come out as... very well reasoned. She's a clever girl, Tonks in my head, in her way)

Ah, that one was... she knows something has happened, but it'st he woods close to her cottage, and at least during the day she's not that scared.
But the tracking spell? That's Moody's fault. She knows quite a lot can happen to her, pregnant, still grieved, worried, and alone. She's taking precautions, because... it's not just her life at risk. And she loves that baby :D But she can't leave Remus' absence alone. Nup.

Hee :) thanks. I wanted to give a point-of-time reference that would make sense. Glad it worked.

Aah. The wolf is a simple creature. He doesn't think about finding out what the intruder is. He hunts. He runs. He fights. He almost dies. Next month when he's subdued, he won't care. I think. (The wolf's not mine. I did run the fic through a Remus player, to make sure I didn't step too much outside HIS character).

Thank you so very much. *cheers*
phoenixfyre13phoenixfyre13 on October 14th, 2007 03:26 pm (UTC)
Nice job! I thought this was wonderfully disturbing, the predator becoming the prey. And it was really nice to see dual narrators here; I thought it was very appropriate and gave the right amount of suspense. Sometimes with time jumping back and forth it can be difficult to follow if not one well; you did an excellent job with that.

Well done! :)
Tonks: Metamorphic moon leavespinkhairedauror on October 14th, 2007 03:49 pm (UTC)
:D Thank you!

I really am glad that the switching points worked. The two PoV's were written separately... but with 'piece of the other comes in here' breaks. It was interesting, writing it.

Thank you for the comment, and glad you liked!
jncar: orange flowerjncar on October 15th, 2007 03:06 am (UTC)
The images of a werewolf fighting for its life against the vampire were chilling. And I love the helplessness of Remus, aware of what the wolf was doing but unable to control it.

Very nicely done.
Tonks: Metamorphic moon leavespinkhairedauror on October 25th, 2007 08:04 pm (UTC)
Thank you! :) Both for reading and commenting.
shimotsukishimotsuki on October 16th, 2007 04:04 am (UTC)
I liked the way the alternating perspectives built up the tension here. Also the many layers to the theme of a hunt, as the wolf turns from hunter to hunted, and then Tonks hunts for Remus. And that tracking spell, with the delayed alarm, is a brilliant idea -- just the kind of knowledge that an Auror would have.
Tonks: Metamorphic moon leavespinkhairedauror on October 25th, 2007 08:06 pm (UTC)
Thank you! :)

The tracking spell... in the RP, which happens in a different timeline, Tonks has promised to be on 'best behaviour', as in not doing anything she's aware is foolish. I guess her version in my head wanted to stick to that promise even outside that war; besides, she's risking both herself and the baby... so she wanted some safeguard. :) I'm glad you liked.
belladonna1986belladonna1986 on October 16th, 2007 07:08 pm (UTC)
Oh I like this, it's always great to return home and be greeted with new and thrilling R/T fics.
Love the suspense, and involving a vampire, the werewolves enemy, makes it more interesting, reversing Remus' role of the hunter to the hunted one.
Great job and definitely sth to read again!
Tonks: OOC alonepinkhairedauror on October 25th, 2007 08:08 pm (UTC)
Aww thank you!

I'm glad you enjoyed it so much to want to read again (it is making me blush :D )

I wanted horror... but I could not bear for Moony to bring the horror, as he could.. so I tried to switch the roles. I'm glad that it worked out!!
katyhasclogskatyhasclogs on October 17th, 2007 08:26 am (UTC)
Great!

This was a really interesting idea. We get so hung up in fanon about werewolves being really dangerous and its great to see the tables turned by a dark creature that's even worse.
Tonks: Metamorphic moon leavespinkhairedauror on October 25th, 2007 08:10 pm (UTC)
Thank you!

I think fanon is great - especially when I don't know it until I finish writing against it *grins* (yeah, well, I'm a recent HP fandom arrival, technically...)
Calyndra Rallinecalyndra on October 18th, 2007 03:07 am (UTC)
Wow, there's a lot going on here. First of all, I love it. I love Dora being an auror and using her skills to do what needs done, despite her worry. She did some really clever things, the spell left for her mum, all that potion know how, tracking Remus-the-wolf's trail.

The whole idea of Remus-the-wolf vs. a vampire is not one I have ever or probably would ever have considered, but I did quite enjoy it. My question now is whether or not you can be turned as a werewolf and a vampire both. Something to ponder maybe... will that vampire be howling next full moon?

Thanks.
Tonks: Metamorphic moon leavespinkhairedauror on October 25th, 2007 08:14 pm (UTC)
Thank you!
Tonks is a clever girl, even if she does do a couple of foolish things now and again; but in my head, she has a kind of 'work mode' (it goes off by default when she feels secure, we're working on that - Constant Vigilance, etc.) where she is somewhat less clumsy, less temperamental, more focused - and her brain is working in overload. And I think Remus missing would put that mode on...

*laughs* OK, I've read a fiction where we got a vampire duck (a vampire was temporarily - for a week - turned into a duck... so during the night, he became a vampire duck...) anyway, if there is a vampire duck, why not a vampire werewolf too?
... poor creature. Kinda.
gilpin25: Brown eyegilpin25 on October 19th, 2007 03:03 pm (UTC)
I really liked this. I think you got the pacing spot on and the twists and turns as you swapped POV and Remus became the prey instead of the hunter were great. I'm also very fond of fics where Tonks reacts like an Auror as well as a worried wife/girlfriend, and uses those skills as a matter of course, and the failsafe idea of the tracking spell was excellent.

Very well done and a proper Halloween horror fic! :)
Tonks: OOC alonepinkhairedauror on October 25th, 2007 08:19 pm (UTC)
Thank you!

I am really loving all the comments for pacing; since it's my first try in the genre, I really worried I'd be able to pull it off; thank you for letting me know it did :)

And Tonks... I doubt somebody trained by Kingsley and Moody and hand-picked by Dumbledore would really forget quite everything she's learned and be a stay-at-home silly. (there's one exception to that 'not forgetting' in my mind *sniffles* and it happens during the Battle of Hogwarts; till then, she's still-in-shape Auror, and good at it!! :D )
xtineebee: Pum'kinxtineebee on October 24th, 2007 11:51 pm (UTC)
A good horror tale; nice build up & well done disturbing images. Thanks!
Tonks: Metamorphic moon leavespinkhairedauror on October 25th, 2007 08:20 pm (UTC)
:) thank you, I'm glad you enjoyed. Thanks for reading and commenting!
What's Taters, Precious?: Not Too Shabbymrstater on October 26th, 2007 03:15 am (UTC)
Sorry it's taken me so long to get around to reading this! I must say, though, it was well worth the wait to read while I wasn't distracted with writing, because this really had me at the edge of my seat! I think the werewolf parts are really well done and definitely a great example of a horror fic; but I especially like your Tonks in action. She's a great Auror, and I love how she knows exactly what was wrong with the potion, and she's a sensitive wife and mother at the same time as well. Really great characterization!
Tonks: Metamorphic moon leavespinkhairedauror on October 26th, 2007 04:24 am (UTC)
LOL that's OK, I slowed in reading some of the ficcies, and then had to put them on hold till I've finished the second round piece... so I kind of understand.

Thank you!! *beams*

And yes. Tonks is very good at her job even if most times in the books when she gets into an actual battle, she gets hurt... by Bellatrix, or else she wouldn't have been picked for the Order. So, even if pregnant, she's still a professional. In her way. (yeah, I also think she'd have tried on her own before calling for help, especially since Remus is involved. I guess :D )

Thanks again, and - I think I'll catch up to your multi-parter today! Finally! :D