The Dark Arts
Other Canon Male Muggle Sibyll Trelawney
Other Era
Chamber of Secrets Prizoner of Azkaban Goblet of Fire
Published: 01/17/2003
Updated: 01/17/2003
Words: 1,206
Chapters: 1
Hits: 698

Unfogging the Future


Story Summary:
Trelawney's first true prediction turns into a self-fulfilling prophecy.

Author's Note:
Lots of thanks to Donna and Lapis Lazuli for beta reading! Feedback of any kind (positive, negative, constructive) is appreciated. Flames will be met with a flame-freezing spell, so don't bother.

The fair was bustling with people. All kinds of wandering merchants and entertainers had lurid signs advertising their goods, the sounds of music mixed with the chattering of the crowd, and the smell of exotic foods and spices hung in the air.

He spotted a stall with colourful jewellery and stepped closer to take a look. He was looking for a gift for his wife. It was after all, the only reason for him to be here with the common villagers. Rings of twisted silver lay on black velvet, and pendants and bracelets hung from polished branches. Behind this display stood an old man in a voluminous garment of dark red silk who observed him closely. As he turned his gaze to the jewellery, he suddenly remembered there was still something really important he needed to do.

Trying to bring to mind what it was, he wandered by a large tent whose sign offered to amaze spectators with a two-headed man, and a long line of people were standing in line for their shilling's worth of wonder. On the other side of this stood a rickety merry-go-round for children, and next a few stalls sold food or ale. Here and there, he saw people wearing robes like those of the jeweller, and he idly wondered where they might come from.

Walking past the pony ride -- five dispirited animals enduring the shrill squeals and thumping heels of their excited passengers -- he noticed an improbably purple gypsy-wagon with a large sign in front that read "UNFOG YOUR FUTURE!! The Sybill Knows ALL!" Smaller letters advised, "One shilling&sixpence/twelve knuts." The two young women standing in front of the tent talking to each other and giggling looked no older than twenty, if that. They were wearing long colourful costumes and an almost vulgar amount of rings, bangles and necklaces. One of them had big glasses that made her eyes appear unnaturally large, the other a head of truly beautiful auburn curls.

As he passed the wagon, the woman with the glasses started talking to him in a soft voice.

"Hello beautiful lad! Would you like to have a look into the future?"

The other nodded enthusiastically and added, "It's only half the cost for Mu-- hm, men as handsome as you." She flashed him a devastating smile.

He didn't really believe in nonsense like fortune-telling and didn't want to waste his time like this. On the other hand, he found it hard to turn down the two girls who were so pretty and smiling so flatteringly.

"Does it take long?" he asked.

"Not at all," assured the woman with the glasses.

His mind made up, he agreed and let himself be directed into the caravan by the first woman, the redhead following them and closing the door.

Inside the wagon it was dim and rather stuffy. There were dark red curtains in front of the small windows and all around the walls, blocking the light, and a single candle was burning in a candlestick on a small round table in the middle of the room. A heady smell of incense perfumed the air, making him somewhat dizzy.

The first woman indicated for him to sit down in a chair at the table and sat down opposite him. The other woman remained standing. On the table there was, besides the candle, a crystal ball and a glass dome with spheres floating inside in a way that reminded him of the solar system.

The woman started talking about the fascinating angles the planets had to each other, and he was getting the feeling he WAS wasting his time, after all. Why couldn't she get to her point? She went on how he was destined for a great future, and pulled the crystal ball closer. The candlelight was reflecting in her glasses and glittering from her numerous bits of jewellery.

All of a sudden, she fell quiet; her body stiffened, her eyes closed.

Ah, here it was, the climax of her act. He noticed the other woman had suddenly tensed, and whispered in a worried tone, "Sybill?"

The woman called Sybill slowly opened her eyes halfway, staring at some distant point, unfocused. She started speaking in a deep, hoarse voice, quite unlike the one she had had before.

"You will have a son... The mother of your son will be a witch..."

Quite unexpectedly, he found himself tense, but he couldn't place the feeling immediately. Without pause, Sybill continued, "Your son will bring about your death... He will bring terrible things... upon the wizard and Muggle world..."

Something clicked in his mind as she said the word "Muggle". He felt his heartbeat quickening. It had been a long time since he'd last heard the word "Muggle." Long buried memories from his childhood flashed through his mind as if something or someone had opened a floodgate. Images he had long buried in the back of his mind and sealed off now came back --

Big boys, older than himself, pointing wooden sticks at him; bursts of light hitting him, knocking him down, hurting him. The boys humiliated him, scared him, taunted him. Their ugly voices chanted strange words, calling him "Muggle" and "M--" something else. The images were the stuff of his worst nightmares. Now that terrible word was echoing in his head, taunting him, making him suffer anew. He felt the blood rushing in his ears.

As if from far away, he heard a woman's voice. "Sybill? What's going on? Sir, are you all right?"

Forcing his mind back to the present, he noticed his hands were gripping the armrests of the chair so hard his knuckles were white, and his palms were sweaty. He became aware of how stuffy and warm the air was in here.

Sybill blinked and her voice became normal again. "What happened?" she asked, looking at the other woman for an explanation, and frowning in confusion.

He asked if he should call an ambulance, but the other woman just steered him out of the caravan in a hurry, obviously wanting him to leave as fast as possible. He noticed his hands were shaking visibly, so he buried them in his pockets.

They had forgotten to charge him, too.

He had the impression that the last part with the trance-like state was not supposed to have happened. He didn't really believe in such irrational things, but... what if? COULD there be truth in what the woman had said? His mind was still reeling in confusion. Each time he thought of anything that might have to do with... THOSE people, a terrible, irrational fear gripped him. What was this rubbish about him having a son with a witch? A son who would bring about his death?

He shook his head as if that would banish the thoughts from his head. Of course, the two had just put on a show. Of course, nothing was true at all. Vague considerations of reporting them to the police helped him re-establish his reality. Making his way through the crowd, he took firm steps, as if to set a full stop behind his thoughts. He remembered his intention to find a gift for his wife.

Who was NOT, of course, a witch.