Chapter 5 : A Riddle in the House of Black
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A/N: Okay, I'm really proud of this chapter. I think that it is probably the best so far! I have so many ideas where this is going to go! I hope everyone is quite satisfied with how long it is. over 3000 words! OHMIGAH I never thought that that would happen! Please excuse the typos. Enjoy!
A very plump and tired looking woman answered the door of Number Twelve, Grimmauld Place. The light in the hall beyond the door seemed to be almost as dark as that outside. “Hello, Severus.” the woman said warmly. “Dumbledore only just said. Why don’t you come in.” her voice was drowned out by another.
“Filthy Half-Breeds! Spawns of scum! Mudbloods and mutants! How dare you defile the house of my fathers?” Lillia frowned. That did not sound like the type woman she was expecting to oppose You-Know-Who. She turned to Severus to question if they were at the right place or not. But he was looking past her at the witch.
“No, Molly. I don’t have time to linger here. I have important business elsewhere, but here she is.” he nudged Lillia farther into the threshold of the dim house. With a quick Dissapparating snap he was gone. Lillia’s mouth hung open slightly for a moment. He had abandoned her here. He had given her such priceless information and then dumped her on some unknown doorstep. It didn’t quite connect.
“Well, do come in, dear.” Molly smiled weakly as though hospitality was the answer to all of the awkwardness that Lillia was feeling.
“Err. Okay.” When Lillia closed the heavy door behind her she realized that there was a pathetic attempt at lighting in the hall. A few dusty torches had been mounted haphazardly to the walls between the heads of ancient house elves. Her stomach turned. What type of person would mount their servants heads on their walls? Surely only someone like her father would do such a thing. Everything just continued to get confusing. The woman named Molly looked over her should as though expecting something.
She was saved from the embarrassment of having to speak when a handsome dark headed wizard came rushing down the hall. Breathlessly, he muttered “Crazy old woman.” the wry humor in his face died away as his eyes fell on Lillia. “So it’s true, then. You are their daughter.”
“Sirius!” the plump woman frowned, obviously appalled at such rudeness.
“No, it’s quite alright. I am ‘their’ daughter, if by ‘their’ you mean Bellatrix Lestrange and Tom Riddle.” Lillia spat the words out with utter contempt. She had not missed the look of utter disgust in the man’s eyes. Suddenly his name registered in her mind. “And you are Sirius Black.”
“That I am, girl.” he bowed his head to her in a show of mock chivalry. His eyes still betrayed his true emotion. He did not want her here. “Welcome to my lovely home. Well, follow me. I guess we aren’t going to get to the bottom of this just standing in the doorway, now are we?”
She followed them deeper into the dreadful house. Almost every step farther into the home revealed another unpleasant piece of décor. They came to an open space in the hall. Behind her stood a winding fleet of stairs. In front of her hung a heavy curtain on the wall. It reminded her of the towels that used to hang in the orphanage to cover holes made by the rowdy boys until Mrs. Hawthorne had decided that they would run out of towels if she kept wasting them. “What is that?” she asked, her voice soft and quiet.
“Oh , that? That’s just my dear old mum.”
“Just a portrait I would hope.”
“Of course.” he smiled, but his face still held no sign of welcome.
Lillia was led into the kitchen. It was no less depressing that the rest of the house. Her eyes scanned the large dinning table. “Professor Lupin!” she smiled. He had been her favorite teacher in her third year. Surely he could testify that she was not a Death Eater.
“Lillia?” he rose from his seat. “You aren’t…”
“Oh yes she is, can’t you just she the resemblance to Bella, Mooney?” Sirius interjected, glaring at Lillia.
“Yes, I believe I can.” he nodded to Sirius. “It’s been a while hasn’t it, Lillia?”
“Yes, it has been. How have you been? I heard that you haven’t really been able to get a decent job after we all found out about the whole werewolf thing.” The already quiet room fell dead silent. Lupin smiled a sad little smile.
“No, you are right. The Ministry does not favor half-breeds, and that makes it really hard on us to find decent employment. But I don’t think that this is the time to talk about that sort of thing.” He nodded to the kitchen table. “Why don’t you have a seat?”
She realized with much dismay that she was expected to sit alone on one side of the table while the five adults took o the other. They expectantly watched her take a seat. She could only return their gazes. What was she to say to them?
Finally the woman cleared her throat. “I’m Molly Weasley. This is my husband, Arthur. And these are Sirius Black, Remus Lupin, and Alastor Moody.” she motioned to each of them in turn.
“Um, Hello. You are the real Professor Moody and not Barty Crouch Jr., I presume?” she realized immediately that she had made a mistake in mentioning that.
“What do you know about that, girl?” Moody demanded, almost rising from his seat.
“Nothing that all of Hogwarts doesn’t know about.” she said calmly.
Lupin turned to Moody, who was on the brink of a definite outburst, and said, “Mad-Eye, she was a student at Hogwarts when your imposter took office. She isn’t a spy. You too, Sirius.” he turned to the dark headed man “You too. I know this girl. She was in my class. She isn’t a Death Eater unless she is quite and excellent one.”
“Well, that is what we should be worried about then isn’t it? We should be worried that she a very good Death Eater. I mean, she is his daughter after all! I think that we should call the kids downstairs and see what they think.” Sirius snapped.
“And why on earth should we do that?” the woman named Molly demanded.
“Because, Molly, they have been in school with her for almost five years now! They will know where she places her faith.”
“Well, I’m afraid that that won’t do you a bit of good.” this time it was Lillia’s cool voice.
“Because, I am not in Gryffindor. I am in Slytherin. I’m sure that you have Harry Potter and all of his do-good friends up there in bed asleep. Asking them about me isn’t going to do anything for you because they don’t know me. None of them would take the time to befriend a Slytherin. Why should they? We are ,after all, a bunch of mangy gits. But, then again that is just what I have heard.” a small smile crept into the corner of her mouth.
None of the adults seemed to know what to say to that. After a few moments, Lupin spoke up. “Lillia, dear, we have no idea what is going on really. We need to know everything that you know so that we can help you.”
She laughed slightly. “No, you need to know everything that I know so that you can determine if I am a Death Eater or not! It’s not to protect me, it’s to protect yourselves. I’m not stupid. You should remember that much at least, Professor.”
He nodded. “Yes I do, but it only makes getting information out of you that much harder.”
Lillia tilted her head a little to the left. “Well now, that is true. Because first of all this could very well be one of my loving father’s tests. He’s brilliant enough. You all could be Death Eaters with polyjuice potion. That could be why dear Professor Snape ran off so quickly. It could be to see how I would act on my own in such a situation. How am I to know for sure? And then of course, you could be the real Order of the Phoenix. If that is true then you might listen to my story, decide you don’t like it, and simply decide to do away with me. You see, it is a lot more likely that you will all be against me at the end of this than it is that you will be with me. So, why should I take my chances telling you anything?”
The adults of the Order exchanged looks of shock. They were perhaps not rendered speechless, but found it best if they left the talking to Lupin. He seemed to be doing better than they would. Only Sirius seemed to dying to speak. He was still glaring at her over the table. Lupin said. “Well, if you won’t tell us anything then we will just have to send you to bed until we can get Dumbledore to come here.”
“Oh, that’s fine. I will tell you one thing, though. I was an orphan until this very night. I had no idea who my parents were or where they were. Tonight I was picked up from my orphanage and taken to Voldemort. So, it’s unlikely that I have been warped and programmed to being a Death Eater. Muggle orphanages generally don’t do that sort of thing.”
Sirius frowned. “And how do we know that you are telling the truth? You could just be saying anything to make us trust you. Well, I don’t trust you at all I think that you are a dirty little Death Eater like the rest of them.”
She raised an eyebrow. “Do you mean purebloods? Surely you can’t mean that, because it’s said that you yourself are a pureblood. And even if that is what you mean, I didn’t know I was pureblood until a few hours ago. Or, do you mean Slytherins?”
“I mean Slytherins!”
“Hah! Now that is simply childish and stereotypical! But I can see where you would think that, but you can ask any Slytherin, they like me just about as much as you do! As a matter of fact about the only people who like me at school are the teachers, and I’ll tell you what fun that sure is! And you know what? I really don’t think that I appreciate being called a Death Eater when you yourself were once sent to Azkaban for the very same crime!” She slammed the kitchen door as she stormed out.
Lillia crashed face first into someone as she slammed the door. “Sorry, I…. oh!” she stopped short. “You are Harry Potter.”
The tall boy frowned. “Yeah, I know who I am but who are you?”
She chewed on her lip. “Um, I’m Lillia. I’m Voldemort’s daughter.”
“Oh!” She had caught him off guard. “What are you doing here?”
“I’m a spy.”
“Oh.” He stepped around her and went into the kitchen. Lillia could hear raised voices coming from the other side of the door. She wasn’t really sure what she should do then. She wanted to rush back into the kitchen and scream at them for being so ignorant. She wanted to blame them for the way she felt. Most of all she wanted to run as far away from anything to do with Voldemort or the Order as she could. She decided to compromise leaving the house. She crossed the hall, opened the front door and threw herself onto the curb hugging her knees to her chest.
She allowed the dark night to engulf her anger. As she breathed heavily she noticed that her anger was fading, swallowed up by the cover of darkness. After about twenty minutes she felt almost eerily calm. The door behind her opened and someone sat beside her in the dark. She knew who it was. Nobody else would simply sit beside her and wait until she spoke. Nobody else would have been sent out to calm her, simply because nobody else would have wanted to.
“Professor,” she said “I shouldn’t be here. Voldemort wants to use me as a spy. Dumbledore wants to use me as a spy. I’m not cut out for this sort of thing. This is like a Potter escapade, not my thing. I’m not a brave Gryffindor or a cunning Ravenclaw. I’m just Lillia, a Mudblood Slytherin.”
“Ah.” he answered “But that’s just it! You aren’t a Mudblood. And you really shouldn’t use that word, especially to describe yourself. If you keep it up, you are going to start believing it.”
“I do believe it. Having them for parents doesn’t change anything. Actually, it makes it worse. I have the type of parents that would find something wrong with a person simply because they have Muggle blood. They are the type of people who treat people the way I have been treated. Hell, my own father practically invented it! My blood isn’t just dirty, it’s the dirtiest!”
“Well, yes, but your parents do not define the person that you are going to be. Have you ever met anyone who’s parents expect them to be a certain way or do certain things and they turn around and are the best people you have ever met? Take Sirius for example. His parents were two of the most faithful to Voldemort, and he is in the Order. Lillia, don’t you see that? You are brilliant, if I remember correctly, surely you can understand that much.”
“Well, yeah, but he started acting just like all the Slytherins when he took such a strong disliking to me when just because of my father.”
Lupin closed his eyes for a moment. He sighed as though he were about to do something laborious. “Lillia, you don’t quite understand where he is coming from when he says those things. He lost a whole lot because of Voldemort. His best friend, twelve years of his life, and ,on more than one occasion, almost his godson’s life. It is hard for him to trust anyone, especially someone he has reason to believe a Death Eater. You can understand that.”
Lillia blinked honest eyes up at him. “Well, no, I can’t understand how that must feel. But I can understand what it is like not to have a best friend. And I an understand what it is like not to have family. So, I do know that if I had those things I would never want to lose them. Something like that would be devastating. But I don’t see him taking the time to try to understand me.”
“Well, why don’t you try to help me understand?”
She turned away from him to stare into the street. Light was faintly beginning to cut through the darkness. “Ok. I don‘t see what it can hurt.” she sighed “My name is Jane Montgomery. Or at least that was the name given to me by the orphanage. At four I decided to change my name to Lillia. I had read the name somewhere. I hated the name Jane more than anything. can’t you just hear how plain it is? I wouldn’t answer to Jane anymore, so overtime I actually became Lillia. But the name still did not change anything. I was still the oddball, too skinny, too smart, too inquisitive, too quiet, too dreamy. Everyone walked all over me. I became a little like the real life Cinderella…”
“Sorry, the real life what?” he interrupted.
“Oh, just a Muggle metaphor. It means I pretty much became the household servant. Or in our kind’s terms, a house elf.”
“Oh. Well, please go on.”
“Okay. So, I became this servant to them. Then when I was about to turn eleven I got the Hogwarts letter. Suddenly I felt special. It wasn’t long before the other kids started asking where I was going to go. They were told that I would be going to a school for extra bright kids. It was easy enough for them to believe, I guess, but it made things much worse on me. It didn’t take them long to figure out where I really was going either. But finally I get to go off to school, right? I finally get to be with people like me. But I get there and I realize that I know absolutely nothing about the magic world.
As I am waiting to be sorted into a House, and trust me I had no idea how much grief that was going to cause me, when I hear this kid, Draco Malfoy, talking about Slytherin. I am a curious and ignorant child, never a good combination no matter how bright the child, so I ask him what Slytherin is. Obviously if I don’t know what Slytherin is then I must be Muggle born, and he isn’t shy about pointing that out.
When I go up to get sorted the Sorting Hat is nice enough to take it’s time in telling me where I need to go, but eventually it sends me off to Slytherin. I don’t think that anyone was very pleased with that announcement. No Slytherin wants a Mudblood. So, on goes my life. I’m alone at school, when the Slytherins are nice enough to leave me alone, and tortured in the orphanage.
Then, earlier tonight Professor Snape comes to the orphanage pretending to be my father. I realize almost immediately that he isn’t really my father, but I don’t know what he is up to. I follow him to his car where he tells me that Voldemort is my real father. I am shocked, but I still have no idea how to act. We get to his house and Voldemort welcomes me with open arms, he is very eager to have a progeny. He shows me the dead body of my mother, he killed her because she hid me from him, to prove a point. In case you haven’t guessed the point is that I must be forever loyal to the Dark Lord.
I am sent to bed so that the grownups can talk, I presume. After a bit of sleep Snape come into the room and tells me that he is working for the Order and that I must do the same. He never really asked me what I would like, he just tells me that I am going to have to play spy for both sides. He says I have to work for the Order while making the Dark Lord believe that I am working for him. So, then he brings me here and you know the story from there.” Lillia’s vacant voice fell silent. She felt empty. She had just poured every bit of herself out. Sure, she still had her secrets, but to be so open with another person left her feeling hollow.
Lupin rested a hand on her shoulder. “I’m sorry that you have had to go through this. Thank you for telling me. You will be safe here. Are you ready to go inside or do you need a moment?” Sunlight was already pouring down on them. Lillia had not realized that she had been talking so slowly. She must have stopped in certain places.
She shook her head. “No, let’s go on in. I guess I owe Potter an explanation.”
A/N: So, did you like it? Hope so! If you have gotten this far please please start reviewing! I would really appreciate it! Thanks to all of you who have been dutifully giving me feedback, this chapter was for you! By the way, if you like my writing so far please check out my other one, Life in the Arms of a Marauder. It's a new idea I had. THANKS! Hope to hear from you soon.
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