Title: Confused Memories (19/?)
Category: Drama, Romance, Crossover (JAG/Harry Potter)
Spoilers: Through "The One That Got Away" (JAG); Order of the Phoenix (Harry Potter)
Disclaimer: I own none of these characters. The JAG universe belongs to DPB and his gang, and the Harry Potter universe belongs to the goddess, JKR.
Author's Notes: And even more angst. I'm trying for the happy ending--really, I am!
Chapter 19: In which hearts are broken
She opened her eyes slightly, keeping her breathing slow and even. It was just after dawn. Weak streams of light struggled to break through the heavy gray clouds outside the window. Unsure of where she was, she glanced around the room. A strong body rested against her back; long arms circled her waist. She relaxed and smiled contentedly, closing her eyes. She was in AJ's room... in his arms.
Sarah didn't understand the connection she felt with this man--but she liked it. It made her feel safe, secure, in her world of confusion. And that was rare these days.
He had said they weren't lovers, but it had felt like they had known each other for years. Apparently, they were coworkers. Perhaps they were partners of some sort--that would explain the closeness. She and Clay practically had a psychic connection after their years in the Aurory. However, she had never felt such an attraction to her former partner. Of course, there was a reason for that. She giggled softly.
"Something funny?" a husky voice asked her.
"Not at all," she replied, turning to look at her lover. She smiled and brushed her lips over his. "Just happy." Her smile faded as she observed AJ's shadowed eyes. Turning fully in his arms, Sarah asked, "AJ? Is something wrong?"
AJ sat up and swung his legs over the side of the bed. "This was a mistake, Sarah."
Sarah stared at him, dumbstruck. "A mistake? How could you say that?"
"Mac..." AJ began, reverting to her old nickname. "I took advantage of you. I betrayed your trust in me. I broke the rules. There's not much larger of a mistake I could have made." He ran his palm over his bald head and stood. He grabbed his pants and pulled them on.
She snorted. "Please, AJ. Don't treat me like I'm a child. You did not, in any way, take advantage of me. I knew exactly what I was doing last night. If you know me, then you know that I was perfectly sober," she snapped. "And I am able to resist the Imperius. What do you think I am?" She took a deep breath. "Look, AJ. I felt something last night that I had never felt before." She paused. "Okay, so maybe I phrased that wrong. But I do have feelings for you--"
"You don't have any idea who I am, Mac!" AJ exclaimed. "And if you did, you would be the first one to tear into me for betraying your trust like that!"
"I know that you're a strong, noble, honorable man who cares about his friends and loved ones very deeply. I know that for the first time last night, someone treated me like a normal person, not an invalid or--or a freak. I know that I felt like more of a woman in your arms than I have in anyone else's. Don't you dare tell me I don't know you, Albert Jethro. I know you better than you know yourself--even if I can't remember every tiny detail. I love you, damn it, and I know you love me!" She was standing now, fists clenched, chest heaving. She glared at AJ, daring him to speak.
Her heart nearly stopped when he finally answered.
"No. I don't."
Sarah took a quick breath. Her eyes burned with tears, but she fought them back. She grabbed her wand from the nightstand. "Accio robes! Accio slippers!" she said sharply. She threw on her clothes and swept out of the room, head held high.
She heard the whisperings among the portraits as she passed by, but ignored them. She passed Clay's guest room. Glancing at the portait guarding the door, she decided to see if he was still in.
"I'm sorry, Professor. Mr. Webb is... quite busy... at the moment," the elegantly dressed lord said, smirking knowingly. "But I will let him know you wished to speak with him when he has a moment."
Sarah nodded despondently. She continued her journey back to the Divination Tower. She passed the Astronomy Tower on the way, but was too distracted to notice the black shadow noiselessly gliding down the staircase.
"Professor MacKenzie," Professor Snape greeted her shortly. She looked up, startled.
"Severus. I'm sorry, I didn't notice you." She offered him a small smile.
"Obviously," Severus replied dryly. "You nearly knocked Mr. McCoy over." Sarah raised her eyebrows as Benjamin McCoy came into view.
"Professor! I had Seen something, and I was looking for you. You weren't in the Divination Tower..." he trailed off, catching sight of his mentor's pale face and dejected air. "Professor? Are you all right?" he asked timidly.
Sarah smiled sadly. "I'm just fine, Ben. A little tired, that's all."
"Well, I believe this could wait until morning. And ten points from Gryffindor for being out of bed after curfew." Snape began to march the boy away.
"But I have to talk to the professor! It's extremely important..." The voices trailed off, and Sarah shook her head, yawning.
She finally made it back to her room. Closing and warding the door, she stripped off her robes and climbed into bed. She extinguished the candles with a simple "Nox." Dropping her head onto her pillow, she finally allowed the tears to flow.