Chapter 14 : Petunia
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Dumbledore had cleared Lily to attend her parents’ funeral, and she had asked James to go with her. When Professor McGonagall informed him of her choice in companion at breakfast, on Friday, James was shocked into silence, something very rare for him. Sirius also seemed shocked, but Becky just smiled to herself and kept eating her eggs. Lily had told the Headmaster she was going to rejoin classes, that day, but James thought it was best not to bring up such a sensitive topic during classes.
Goodness knows he’d upset her enough over the years.
The next morning, James got up especially early, and forces Sirius to, as well.
“What do you wear to a Muggle funeral?” asked James, scrutinizing his small non-school wardrobe of jeans. “I’ve been to a wizard one for my distant cousin three times removed, once, and you wear robes to Wizard ones.”
“Robes?” Sirius shrugged, still laying down with his eyes closed. “Bleeding hell, it’s eight in the morning and you haven’t got to be there till eleven.”
“But I don’t know what to wear to a funeral!” James said.
“REMUS!” called Sirius. “REMUS HELP!”
Remus lurched from bed as if a monster was eating him, and blinked up at them, blue eyes wide. “Huh?!”
James glared at Sirius. “Why’d you have to go on and do that, huh? Moony was sleeping!”
“Huh?!” repeated Remus, shaking his head like a wet dog.
“Goodnight,” Sirius smiled, closing his drapes.
And he started snoring. James sighed. “Go on back to bed, Moony, and just let me borrow your book.”
“Whaffor?” Remus yawned.
“I don’t know what to wear to a Muggle funeral. Plus I’ll be gone overnight,” James sighed. “Do you think my jeans are ok?”
“Definitely not,” Remus sighed, standing up and straightening his pajamas. “I think you’re supposed to wear all black and no jeans or stuff.”
“That’s not too groovy.”
Remus shrugged from his bed. “It’s death, you’re paying respects to the people dead.”
James nodded, digging through his wardrobe.
Lily purposefully let herself sleep long as she dared and know she still had enough time to get things done. She’d packed the night before, but there wasn’t much as she would be going back home. Almost all her things were there, but the thought of seeing them again and having to think that almost everything of hers was given and bought by her parents... It hurt. She woke at nine thirty, seeing Becky up and studying for a test on Monday with glasses on her nose. No one really knew that she wore glasses besides Lily and Charles. That was the way Becky liked to keep it.
“Morning,” she said softly.
“Hi,” Lily muttered, sitting up. She just stared at her lap for a while. “What do you think their last thought was?”
Becky looked up at Lily through her glasses. “I don’t know... There’s so few seconds to think of anything before an Unforgivable hits you.... But if they did have time.. it was probably about their family, you and your sisters and brother.”
“Daisy never lived, though,” Lily said softly. “Neither did Pirro...”
“I know,” Becky said softly.
Lily sighed. “No one should have to watch their younger sister and brother die of leukemia.... And then watch her parents be murdered.”
Becky nodded. “I know. Life isn’t fair, it takes away the best of us in the worst ways.”
“And... the thing was.... I was so sure that when I got that letter to Hogwarts.... I was so sure that if they’d have lived.... Daisy and Pirro would have gotten one, too,” Lily said, still staring at her blanket. “We used to play games when we were little, since Petunia would never play with us.. Mind reading games, and we always knew what other people were thinking, exactly.... All three of us...”
Becky sighed. “I wish I could’ve seen them...”
Lily managed a wan smile, looking over at her friend. “They were beautiful. Blond hair, that’s why mum named her Daisy. She had mom’s hazel eyes. Best four year old sister a girl could ask for. And Pirro.... He had green eyes and red hair, like me... And freckles, too...”
Becky smiled softly. “At least you’ve got your memories of them.”
Nodding, Lily stood and started dressing for the day. She had pulled out her black dress, and packed her other one for the actual burial tomorrow. She pulled on pantyhose reserved for her nursing training, and also the nursing shoes. After pulling on her heavy cloak and pulling her hair up away from her face, Lily grabbed her bag and waved good-bye to her friend. It was nearing ten, and she still had to eat and then find Dumbledore to Port-Key to her house. Going down the stairs, Lily sighed to herself.
“This is going to be interesting,” she muttered.
Coming round the corner, she saw Peter and Remus sitting with each other, studying. She went over and sat on the couch by them. Remus glanced up.
“Hi, Lilis...” he said softly.
“Morning, Remus,” she whispered.
Peter looked over. “Why are you being so quiet?” Lily just glared at him as Remus smacked Peter’s forehead. Peter jumped and said loudly, “What?! What was that for?!”
She was just about to start yelling at the ignoramus, when she heard voices on the stairs and glanced over. Sirius was laughing his way down, frequently glancing back, and she didn’t have to keep watching to know who he was laughing at and why. Lily sighed and stood, giving Remus a one-armed hug, and turned to see a very put-out looking James Potter trying to retain some dignity in his dress clothes.
“Stuff it, Padfoot!” he grumbled, adjusting his Quidditch bag of clothes on his shoulder. Then he saw Lily. “Morning.”
She just nodded, noticing that he seemed to have taken the time to be very Muggle in his dress. “Ready for breakfast?”
“Hours past,” he said. “Later, Padfoot, Moony, Wormtail.”
They all waved the two of them out, and there was a silence as they walked down the cold hall. Lily was trying not to think of how she was going to have to see her parent’s bodies in caskets, and instead turned to James to distract herself.
“Sirius making fun of you?”
“Very much so, yes,” James nodded. “He thinks my Muggle attire is horrible.”
“To someone with no taste at all, it would be,” Lily shrugged. “I think you look nice.”
“Do you realize what you just said?” James grinned.
Lily rolled her eyes as they went down the Moving Stairs. “Don’t hold your breath.”
James thought of a million retorts to say to that, particularly ones highlighting last night and the, er, distraction incident, but he just smiled smugly. Lily glanced over.
“But your hair is horrible.”
“Oi!” he gasped, clutching it. “What’s wrong with my hair?!”
“It’s all stick outy at all these odd angles,” Lily said.
She shook her head. “It’s just... messy.”
James sighed. “It’s the way I am, believe me, my mum has tried every charm in to book to get it flat.”
Lily raised an eyebrow. “Every charm?”
“Well then, sounds like it needs some good old Muggle gel.”
James let out a little laugh as they entered the Great Hall. It was mostly empty, with late sleepers eating their breakfast. A few of them cast odd looks at the two of them, all dressed up and carrying overnight bags, but thankfully no one said anything. Lily couldn’t force down anything, though she tried, and James didn’t to seem to have much of an appetite beyond toast, either.
“Come on, Lily, eat,” he said. “Remember the drugs!?”
She blushed, remembering much more than that from that day. “Yes...” she said softly.
James immediately remembered that, too, and tried not to recall the touch of her rose petal soft lips on his own. They sat there in silence for a while, before he added,
“But really, you should eat.”
She sighed. “Don’t bother me, James. I don’t feel like doing much of anything, right now...”
He just nodded, staring down at his own half eaten toast. Just then, the doors opened and Dumbledore walked purposefully over to them both. He stopped in front of them, and smiled softly.
“Yes, Headmaster,” Lily said softly, standing.
James stood with her, and they followed him to a room behind the teacher’s table that James had never been in. There was a fireplace in the corner, and pictures of witches and wizards lined the room. A picture of a witch next to a wizard with a walrus mustache looked down at them.
“Albus?” she asked.
“Go away for a few minutes, Violet,” Dumbledore said. “In fact, all of you, out!”
She sniffed, and ambled out with the others. After a moment, there was silence from the room. Dumbledore sighed and took a small necklace out of his pocket. It looked Egyptian of origin, an eye made of pewter with an odd colored stone for the pupil. He gently tapped it with his wand, muttering a spell. He stared down at the necklace in his fingers, and sighed.
“One day, one day.... she’ll wear it always.... We can only hope...” he whispered, fingering the trinket.
“Professor?” James asked softly, confused as Lily.
He didn’t look up, but shook his head. “Terrible fate... Poor child...”
“Dumbledore? Albus?” Lily said softly. “Are you all right?”
He looked up at her, and she saw the faintest tear glimmering in his blue eyes. “Oh yes... I was just remembering the horrors of the future.... And the innocent lives that will have to face them...”
Lily ‘s brow remained knitted in confusion, and James was quite sure that he was drunk. Albus sighed and held out the necklace to Lily, who gently took it.
“Right, then. Departure straight to your house in thirty seconds, my dear. I have programmed it to come straight back to this room at sundown on Sunday,” Dumbledore said. “Just... try your hardest not to loose that, my dear.”
“Sir... I wouldn’t loose it, but if it’s valuable... Why would you let us use it?” Lily asked, glancing down at it.
He smiled softly. “It has no value now, but for the future it does. We can only hope that she is born with the same qualities.... Now, my dear... off you go, departure in ten seconds.”
Lily just nodded, and offered part of the necklace to James. He took it, shifting his bag, and took a last glance at Dumbledore, before she felt a sharp jerk on her navel area, and Hogwarts around her disappeared. Lily’s feet slammed into ground, and she coughed, falling forward slightly. James instinctively reached out and grabbed her, preventing her from falling, and blinked to look around him.
They were standing in the middle of a large entrance area to a nice home, with black and white checkered tile floor. The walls were paneled with deeply painted wood, and there were several framed photographs hanging on the walls. Lily sighed as she looked around, already starting to cry at all the memories of her parents here.
“It’s okay, Lily,” James whispered, hugging her to him.
She reached an arm around his shoulders to hug him back. “I’d like to think so, James.”
There was silence for a moment, before loud footsteps were heard from James’ left, down a hall. They both looked, and saw a thin, bony, ugly girl with deep brown hair waking down it.
“Oh, it’s just the freak and some loser,” she called over her shoulder. “Don’t bother calling the police, call the asylum instead.”
A phone clicked off somewhere, and Lily glared at her sister, who smirked in a way that made James severely reminded of Lucius Malfoy.
“Hello, Petunia,” Lily mumbled.
“Is this your kind of sick joke, bringing another one into the house?!” Petunia shrieked, as if James were a filthy dog.
He immediately felt like killing her. “No, I’m Lily’s friend. The Headmaster asked if she would like someone to accompany her. And now I see why.”
“What’s that supposed to mean, you little freakazoid?” Petunia snarled, grossing her arms over a very ugly black dress.
“It means, you stupid bitch,” Lily said, “That I have no family left so I should bring someone who cares.”
“Damn right you haven’t got any family left, as far as I’m concerned, they gave us the wrong kid at the hospital!” she yelled.
James could feel Lily starting to shake with rage and tears, and pulled her closer. His movement brought more attention from Petunia, just as a very large man with a big mustache and no neck ambled in from down the hallway.
“You. Who are you?!” she snarled, as the man’s arm slithered over her thin waist.
James stood up tall as he could. “James Potter.”
Petunia eyed him. “If you touch one thing in this house and get freak germs on it... I swear I’ll kill you.”
James thought of a million things to say and do in response to that, but just settled for a murderous glare, fingers twitching to grab his wand out. Instead he just eyed the man, probably Vernbin Durrvy or whatever his name was, and sneered.
“Yes ma’am, I’d enjoy watching that,” he smirked.
Without another word, he turned towards the large stairs to his right, helping Lily along as she hugged to him, going up the stairs and hoping her room would jump out at him. There were loud mutterings from downstairs, but he ignored them as he walked down the pale yellow hallway, knowing this was going to be the longest nineteen hours of his life.
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