Chapter 8 : |Chapter 6| The Spy
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* Chapter image by Me! *
Saleena left the very next day, telling Draco only that she was going on her first mission for the Order. She wouldn’t give him any more details than that. A few days later, Harry Ron and Hermione also departed, leaving no clues behind as to where they were going, or how long they would be gone, and life at the Burrow went back to being quiet again. The only difference this time was that now Tonks seemed to be spending a lot more time there than she used to. For two weeks straight, she came over everyday to talk to Draco. She was constantly complaining about the new girl at work, the one from America.
Apparently, the Minister did not intend to fire Tonks after all. Instead, he had made the two of them partners and put Tonks in charge of all her training. As a result, the two of them spent much of their time together. And to make matters worse, for Tonks anyways, McGonagall had insisted that this girl be casually informed about the Order’s existence. You know, just to see if she was interested… Turns out that the idea of a Rebel Group, as she liked to call it, was intriguing to her after all. You can pretty much guess where things went from there. McGonagall invited her over for dinner, they talked about the Order, Roxi expressed her interest in joining, McGonagall questioned her, and less than a week later, she was in!
Draco hadn’t even been staying there for two months yet when he got his first notice in the mail. Somehow or another, the minister had gained knowledge that Draco was “hiding-out” at the Weasley’s home. He had issued an order for Draco’s arrest, but thankfully, Arthur had talked him out if it by somehow miraculously convincing Rufus to give Draco a chance to explain himself. As a result, Draco was summoned to the Minister’s office for intensive questioning. And, during that time, Draco revealed to the Minister of Magic everything he knew of Lord Voldemort, and his Father, and all of the other Death Eaters. He even dropped a few very surprising names that not even the Minister of Magic himself was aware of yet. Nor would he have ever guessed, or even suspected, those such people whom Draco mentioned as being Death Eaters. When Arthur returned to get Draco, the Minister announced that he was deciding to release him, and drop all the charges that had been pressed against him. Rufus then strongly advised Draco that he should tell the Weasley’s everything that he knew…
Which brings us back to the present! Arthur had told McGonagall what he’d overheard the Minister suggesting to Draco before leaving his office. This fact alone proved that Draco did have information that they needed, and they grew very suspicious as to what exactly the Minister would of wanted them to know. So one afternoon, McGonagall went upstairs to Draco’s room to speak with him for the very first time since he had arrived there. She knocked on the door and Draco told her to come in. The look on his face when he saw her enter the room was priceless. He had never expected for someone like her to ever went to speak with someone like him, especially after all the pain he knew he had caused her with the whole Dumbledore incident. But as it was, McGonagall seemed to actually value Draco’s opinion on things.
“P-Professor, what are you doing in here?” he stammered.
“Not to worry, Draco, I have come to talk to you,” she ensured him. “Just talk. You’re not in any trouble, I promise you.”
Draco sighed in relief and calmed down a bit. Ever since the day that the Minister had dropped all his charges, the Daily Prophet had been publishing all kinds of articles about him. It seemed people weren’t too happy with the Minister’s decision on Draco’s freedom. Draco half-expected that someone would burst through the doors at any minute and try to take him away and lock him up somewhere. There were a lot of angry and crazy people within the ministry in these dark and mad times.
“So, what is it that you wanted to talk to me about?” he asked her.
McGonagall sighed. “Well Draco, it’s quiet simple really,” she stated. “I need to know exactly who’s side you intend to be on in this war.”
“Excuse me?” he scoffed, clearly affronted. Wasn’t the answer to that question obvious?
“You heard me,” she said. “There are three sides to this war; Voldemort, the Ministry, and the Order, and I need to know which one you stand on. Clearly you aren’t on Voldemort’s side anymore, so where exactly does that leave you then, Draco? Will you side with the Ministry, or do you wish to join us?”
“By us, you mean the Order, correct?” McGonagall nodded. “You’re not seriously standing here asking me if I want to join the Order of the Phoenix, are you?” Again McGonagall only nodded. Then an even more shocked Draco asked, “Why?”
“Because Draco,” she began. “I would like to believe that you really want to do the right thing. I honestly think that you really could make a difference in the coarse of this war, and I want for other people to see that you truly have changed. Why is that so difficult to believe? What Voldemort did to you was horrible! I feel that you at least deserve a chance to extract revenge, and by whatever means you feel necessary. I am merely offering to give you that chance.”
“Well I can assure you that I do not support the Ministry. They’re all a bunch of daft, gormless idiots if you want my opinion!” Draco said, chuckling at his own insult. “I mean, sure, they did let me off the hook by giving me back my freedom and all, so no complaints there. But still, I cannot support some of the things that they have done. And as far as joining the Order goes… I-I just don’t know,” he sighed. “There’s already a lot going on right now and… and I… I just don’t know,” he said again, shaking his head.
“Well, how about this,” McGonagall offered. “We are having a meeting tonight and it’s the first one we’ve had altogether in months. Why don’t you come down and join us? You can sit off to the side and just observe, you don’t even have to say anything. However, if you do wish to join in on any of the conversations, you are more than welcome to. Get a feel for what it’s like and then decide if you want to be a part of it or not.”
Draco considered her for a moment. She actually looked serious about this. “I dunnow,” he repeated. “What will everyone else think? I mean, is it really a good idea to have someone in there who is not a member? I thought you said that secrecy was of the utmost importance right now.”
“It is Draco,” she said. “But with you, it’s a tad bit different. You actually live here now, so it‘s apparent that you are obviously going to know things. It would be nigh impossible to keep you in the dark about all the Order business, so long as you are residing in our Headquarters.”
Draco shook his head. “I just don’t see how I’m any different,” he said, “but alright. I suppose, if you really think it’s a good idea, then I will come down there tonight and give it a shot,” he shrugged. “You know, just to see what I think. Then I can let you know tomorrow how I feel about it.”
Minerva nodded. “That sounds like a great idea,” she agreed. “Now, if you’ll excuse me, I do need to get going. I have a lot to prepare for tonight’s meeting.” That being said, she hurried out of the room, leaving Draco alone once again in silence…
At about 7:00 that night, Draco marched down the steps and into the Weasley’s sitting room. The room was quite crowded so he pulled a chair off to the side, as Professor McGonagall had suggested, and sat down at the back of the room, distancing himself from everyone else. There were quite a few people there whom he recognized, such as; Longbottom & Luna. Were those two together now? And, how in the hell did a pair like that end up getting into the Order of the Phoenix? A few of Draco’s old teachers were there, as well as Tonks & Lupin. And standing next to Tonks was a very strange girl with short, bright, magenta colored hair, whom Draco had never met before. He surveyed her appearance for a moment, counting her as the strangest thing he had ever seen, and then moved on…
Four out of Mr. & Mrs. Weasley’s seven children were there as well. Fred and George, of coarse, and the other two Draco could only assume to be Charlie and Bill. Bill was the obvious to identify because Draco recognized his wife, Fleur, almost immediately. She was still just as beautiful as he had remembered her from his fourth year at Hogwarts. Which could only mean that the other red-head standing next to Bill and Fleur was obviously Charlie. Ron was off with Potter and Granger, and he knew fully well that Percy would never show is face here. Not so long as he knew Draco was staying there now. Oh no, Draco knew far too much about Percy Weasley. A fact that little Percy was very well aware of… No, he would not come here. Of that much, Draco was certain. As thoughts of Percy filled Draco’s head, he began to wonder if perhaps maybe the minister was right. Maybe he should tell Molly and Arthur what he knew about their son. A few months ago, hurting their feelings would not have mattered to them, but now, now he just could not bring himself to hurt them…
…Roxi also looked around at all the unfamiliar faces within the room. It was in that moment that she first noticed the very sad-looking, pale, blonde boy sitting alone in a chair, slightly removed from the crowd. It was obvious by the boy’s behavior that he did not want to be there. He was staring off into the distance, looking at nothing in particular, and his eyes… they were the most beautiful eyes that Roxi had ever looked into, to say the least. Looking at them now, they were the most brilliant shade of blue-grey that Roxi had ever seen. She had always believed that staring into another person’s eyes was like looking through a window into their soul. And this boy, whomever he was, was no exception to that. His eyes were full of secrets, of pain, and emotion… Yes, Roxi could gather a lot about him already just by looking indirectly into his eyes.
As for the rest of him, well, the rest of him was not so bad neither. He was after all, very good looking. Roxi blushed. She had always had a bit of a thing for blondes. Her friends back home had called it her greatest weakness. But she couldn’t help it if she had preferences, unlike the rest of them. They all could care less what color his hair was, or what shade his eyes were, as long as he would have them. But Roxi, Roxi was rather different from the rest of her friends. She didn’t date much because she believed in true love, and finding the right guy. She did not want to throw herself at just any guy. Not that she couldn’t if she wanted to, there were plenty of guys back home who wanted her. But she had turned them all down. And now, as she stared at the handsome blonde across the room, she began to wonder who he was, why was it he looked so sad, what made him decide to sit so far away from everyone else, and, well, she also couldn’t help but wonder weather or not he was single. Oh my god, Roxi, you are such a girl sometimes, she thought, scolding herself for having such thoughts about a guy she had never even met yet. Then a short gasp escaped her as she seen his head starting to turn in her direction…
Sensing that he was being watched, Draco withdrew himself from his own thoughts and forced his focus back onto the people around him. He turned his gaze onto the new girl and noticed for the first time that she was staring at him. His first reaction would normally have been to give her a dirty look, but he was so overtaken by her head-on appearance that instead, he merely gaped at her. The strangest thing was that this girl did not look away in attempt to avoid his gaze. No, instead, she continued staring right into his eyes with just as much intensity. Draco didn’t know why, but somehow, he felt drawn to her. Before he even knew what he was doing, he began to rise from his chair, meaning to get up and walk over to her and introduce himself. Quickly, he forced himself to sit back down and look away from her before anyone could notice what had happened. He squinted back at her from the corners of his eyes. She was still staring at him. Didn’t she realize how incredibly annoying that was?
“Attention, attention everyone!” McGonagall announced, calling order to the meeting. Everyone stopped what they were doing at once and turned their attention onto her. It was then that Roxi finally averted her gaze off of Draco, and onto McGonagall.
Thank you Professor McGonagall, Draco thought to himself. From there on, Minerva informed the rest of the Order, the ones who did not yet know, of Mad-Eye’s death. She also told them about Saleena and stated that the reason she was not at the meeting was because she was out an her own secret mission. She did not offer anymore details other than that, no matter how hard the others pressed her for more information as to what kind of mission she was on. McGonagall made the announcement of the new that Harry had brought about Voldemort and the Gypsies, another bit of news which Draco had already been informed about. Yes, living with the Weasley’s did have its advantages, but because he already knew everything they were talking about, he found the entire first hour of discussion to be quite boring. He had just about convinced himself to get up and quietly head upstairs when Minerva finally brought up something that interested him immensely, although he did not yet understand why he was so interested in her.
“And this is our newest member,” McGonagall said in regards to the strange, staring girl who was standing next to Tonks. “Her name is Roxandrea Zarooni.”
“But please, just call me Roxi,” said the new girl, clearly embarrassed by the use of her full name.
“Very well then, Roxi,” Minerva corrected. “Would you care to tell the rest of the group a little bit about yourself?”
“Why certainly,” she said cheerfully. She seemed to like talking. “My name is Roxi, but of coarse you already knew that.” She chuckled. “I am from America and I recently transferred here to study and work in your Ministry’s Auror Department. Like my partner Tonks here, I am also a Metamorphmagus.” This bit of info seemed to attract a lot of attention. Draco was listening intently, hanging off of every word she said.
“I absolutely love it here. I love my job, I love my partner, and I am sure I am going to love all of you as well!” she went on. “I may be new here, but don’t think that that means I have no idea yet of what Voldemort is capable of. I knew what I was going up against before I even came here and took on this job. I am well aware of the dangers this entails, but I wish to help in whatever ways that I can. Thank you.” With that, she bowed her head and sat back down on the couch next to Tonks.
“You are most welcome Roxi,” Minerva said, picking up where she had left off. “Now, on to our most pressing matter. Has anyone seen or heard anything that might tell us who the spy might be?”
“Well, I aven’t heard anysing,” Fleur chimed. “But, I do not see ‘ow were going to find him or her when you keep bringing in all zees new people who we do not know.”
Bill grabbed his wife’s hand. “Fleur, honey, I think Minerva knows what she is doing,” he muttered.
Fleur was glaring at Roxi now. “I do not sink so, dear. She iz not even from here. She iz not one of us!”
“I do not believe that Roxi is a spy,” Minerva said defensively. “I questioned her and she passed the examination.”
“Maybe she waz faking,” Fleur accused.
Everyone in the room began talking all at once. Molly, Arthur, Charlie & Lupin were defending McGonagall. Fleur was shouting at Bill, trying to get him to take her side. Fred & George were questioning Tonks about Roxi. Nevil and Luna were just staring at Roxi. And Roxi herself was frightened and taken aback with all the blame and all the fingers being pointed at her. She had no idea of what they were even talking about. She sank down in her chair, biting her lower lip nervously. She didn’t know what to say.
Draco didn’t know why, but he suddenly felt an urge to protect her, to run to her defense and tell them that it wasn’t her. He stood up and yelled over all the noise, “will all of you just shut-up!” The room immediately grew silent as everyone stopped what they were doing and gaped at Draco. “Yeah, I do speak, don‘t look so surprised,” he sarcastically added in response to the stunned looks he was receiving. “Now would you listen to yourselves? Arguing amongst one another and blaming the innocent. And here I thought that the Order of the Phoenix was above all that nonsense! You’re all wrong anyways, it’s not her. This girl is no more a spy than Tonks is!”
“Oh that’s it,” George said, “run to her defense. As if it wasn’t already obvious to everyone that you’re completely gaga over her.”
“What? No! I-It’s not like that. It isn’t like that at all,” Draco stammered. “I-I, I just know that she is not the spy, that’s all.”
“And how do you know that?” Fred sneered. “I suppose that next you’re going to tell us you do know exactly who it really is?”
“I-I,” Draco was stuck. The truth was he did know exactly who the spy was, but he didn’t want to bring it up in front of the entire Weasley family. It was going to be hard enough facing Molly and Arthur, let alone all of them, all at once. “As a matter of fact, I do. I do know who he is. But I cannot tell you who.”
“Did you hear that George?” Fred said. “He knows who, but he can’t tell us who.”
“How convenient,” George mused.
“You wouldn’t believe me even if I did tell you,” Draco accused. “And that’s why I won’t say anything, not to you!”
“Boys, that’s enough!” Minerva cut in before Fred and George could start on Draco again. “Draco, if you know something we would really appreciate it if you would tell us.”
“I want to tell you, really I do” he said. “But just not here. There‘s too many people.” He shot the twins a dirty look. They both returned the gesture. “If it’s alright professor, I would like to speak with you and Mr. & Mrs. Weasley alone.”
Minerva smiled kindly at Draco. This was the moment she had been waiting for. This was the very reason she had encouraged him to come to the meeting. She knew that he knew something they didn’t, and now she was going to find out exactly what that something was. “As you wish Draco,” she said. “Perhaps the four of us should excuse ourselves to the kitchen.”
Draco shook his head. “I don’t want to be overheard.”
Molly and Arthur exchanged looks. “Lets go up to our room and talk,” Arthur suggested. “We should have plenty of privacy there.” Molly nodded in agreement.
“Very well then,” McGonagall said. “We’ll go now.”
“What?” Fred protested. “You’re just going to let him have his way, just like that?”
“Yeah,” George agreed. “What about the rest of us? We deserve to know who the spy is too!”
“I will report back to you all as I see fit to do so, after I have spoken with Draco,” McGonagall replied. “Do you honestly think that I would keep secrets from all of you? I will not leave you in the dark. That is not the kind of leader I am!”
“Well said,” Remus agreed.
“Thank you, Remus.”
“But what about the meeting?” Tonks asked.
“Well this shouldn’t take long,” Minerva answered. “Remus, I’ll leave you in charge while I’m gone. In the meantime, why don’t you all talk to Roxi for a bit. Ask her some questions, get to know her better. I am sure that once you do, you will realize that she is not a spy. Perhaps maybe then you will all will trust my judgment a bit more?” Without another word she got up and swept from the room, Molly, Arthur and Draco following right behind her.
Mr. & Mrs. Weasley’s room was on the second landing. Arthur opened the door and lead them in. Molly and Arthur’s room was small with floral wallpapers, and it was very crowded. The only furniture in it was an old antique dresser, two mismatching armchairs, a side table and an old full-sized bed with somewhat shabby linens, which sat up against the back wall in the middle of the room. There was a window on the back wall and Draco could see that night had fallen already. The room was lit by a couple of dim torches. The room’s overall appearance, although very clean and tidy, was indeed poor and sad looking. It was obvious to tell, just by looking around the bedroom that Mr. & Mrs. Weasley definitely did not put themselves first when it came to spending their money. Draco had never been in this room before because this was the one place in the house he was strictly forbidden to ever enter. Now he could see why they wouldn’t have wanted him in here. He felt very awkward and uncomfortable to be sitting in it now, especially knowing that what he had brought them here to say would break their hearts.
Molly and Arthur seated themselves on the edge of the bed and McGonagall took the chair next to Draco. “Very well Draco,” she began. “Let’s get straight to the point. You said you knew wh the spy was, so tell us. Who is it? Is it anyone in the room downstairs? Is that why you had to bring us up here to tell us?”
“No. it isn’t any of them,” he answered.
“Then who?” McGonagall pressed.
Draco looked at their expectant faces and swallowed past the lump in his throat. He took a deep, shaky breath and began. “Mr. & Mrs. Weasley you have been nothing but kind to me since I have been here. You didn’t have to take me in, but you did. And then when the Ministry cleared my name and gave me back my rights, you could have kicked me out, but you didn’t. You didn’t have to call in Saleena, you could have just let the poison kill me, but you didn’t. You guys have done everything you can to take care of me, even thought you didn’t have to and still, I have been keeping something from you. Something that I know the both of you have every right to know.”
Draco paused to take a few more shaky breaths. His hands were trembling in nervousness. He really did not want to hurt them. “It’s been killing me inside, keeping this from you,” he continued. “But I only did it because after everything you have done for me, I didn’t want to have to hurt you. I didn’t want to be the one to break the bad news to you, I just couldn’t bring myself to do it. I was hoping that you would eventually figure it out on your own, but it’s been over two months! I’ve realized that there is no way that you will ever guess it’s him. He’s too sneaky and too evasive for anyone to expect him to be working for Lord Voldemort. Even the Minister was surprised when I told him who it was last week. But I just don’t want to hurt you,” he repeated.
“It’s alright Draco,” Arthur encouraged. “You can tell us anything. We wont be mad at you.”
“Yeah,” Molly agreed. “The only thing you could say that would possibly upset us is if you were to tell us that the spy happened to be one of our children,” she mused. “But we all know that that’s not possible. Charlie, Bill, Fred and George are all downstairs and you’ve already stated that it isn’t anyone down there. Ron is off with Harry, Ginny is finishing her last year of school and Per-” Molly stopped in mid-sentence and gasped. She clapped a hand over her mouth. “Oh my god,” she muttered. Molly’s breathing suddenly became irregular, her hands too were trembling and she was shaking her head in clear denial. “No this - this can’t be! I-It can’t be!”
Arthur, however, was a bit slower on the uptake. His first thought was that of concern for his wife. But moments later, he realized with a jolt of horror why she was reacting the way she was. She must be thinking that their third son, Percy, was the spy. “It can’t be,” he echoed Molly’s words in a low whisper. He was also shaking his head in shock and disbelief. “No, it’s not Percy. It can’t be Percy. I know he’s done some low things in the past, but I do not believe that he would never betray us like that.” But even as he said it, he doubted it. Percy’s being the spy made sense. It was so obvious. He should have known it all along. And deep down, he supposed he did suspect it, but never wanted to admit that it might be him.
“Draco, is it?” McGonagall asked in a shaky voice. “Is-is Percy Weasley the spy?”
Draco stared down at the floor to avoid any eye-contact. “Yes,” he answered.
Molly fell back onto the bed and curled into a ball. She began to sob uncontrollably. Arthur leaned back, ran his fingers through her hair and whispered into her ear to try to get her to calm down some. It wasn’t working. He placed a hand on her arm and started rubbing it comfortingly, then he turned back to Draco.
“You said earlier that no one would have ever suspected this spy to be working for Voldemort. That not even the Minister knew it was him,” Arthur said. “If Percy is the spy, then does that mean…?” he stopped in mid-sentence, unable to finish his question. Now he wasn’t quite so sure weather he wanted to know if his son was a Death Eater or not. And worst of all, he didn’t know how much more of this conversation Molly could handle. She was already on the verge of having a nervous breakdown as it was.
Minerva picked up where Arthur had left off. “Is Percy a Death Eater as well, Draco? Does he have the Dark Mark?”
Draco buried his face in his hands. This had to be one of the hardest things he had ever done in his life. A part of him smiled on the inside, remembering that only a few months ago he would have marveled at the chance to crush the Weasley’s perfect little family. Now the thought of it sickened him. Mr. & Mrs. Weasley were the nicest people he knew. No one had ever shown him kindness like they had, and now, now he was hurting them beyond belief. He slowly, reluctantly nodded his head, hoping that Molly wasn’t looking at him. But Molly had looked up as soon as Minerva had asked the question. She shrieked in agony again as her worst fears were confirmed.
From Downstairs, everyone heard Mrs. Weasley’s cries. Fred and George were on their feet at once. “Sit down guys,” their older brother Charlie ordered. “You know how mum gets. If she wants us in there, she’ll have someone come down and get us when she’s ready. It’ll do no good at all to just go running in there unannounced. That will only upset her more.”
“He’s right Fred,” George sighed. “As usual.” He plopped himself back down on the couch.
Fred followed his twins lead. “If he’s hurting our mother, I swear I-”
“Oh, come on!” Bill exclaimed. “Dad and Minerva are both up there with her, and I highly doubt that the two of them will let Draco Malfoy even touch our Mother. Use your common sense guys!”
“But then, why was she screaming? She sounded like she was in pain, didn’t you just hear her?” Fred shot back.
Bill shrugged. “Maybe it was just something that was said,” he suggested.
“What could Draco have possibly said to upset mum like that?” George asked.
At that moment, Minerva came back into the room. Her face was full of stress, anger, grief and worry all at once. She seemed more distant then usual. “Molly and Arthur would like to speak with all of their children alone,” she announced.
And now, Charlie too was worried. “What’s going on?” He asked.
“Your father will tell you everything,” Minerva answered softly. She acted like she was on the verge of tears herself. “The four of you better head upstairs. Now. I am going to stay down here with everybody else this time. Your mother and father are waiting for you.”
Fred and George were the first to get up and leave, followed by Charlie. Bill kissed Fleur on the cheek. “You wait down here, alright?”
“But why can I not go with you?” she asked. “I am a part of zis family too!”
“Fleur, honey, I know that. And I mean no offence in asking you to wait here. It’s just that, well, trust me - you know how my mother can be. If something is upsetting her so badly that she has asked to speak with just us, it’s always best to comply with whatever she wants. There is no arguing with her when she gets like that.”
“You coming Bill?” Charlie asked from half-way up the first set of stairs.
“Yeah, be right there Char,” he replied getting up from the couch. He took Fleur’s hand and kissed it. “Wait for me here,” he told her.
After the four Weasley children had gone upstairs, McGonagall took the empty seat on the sofa next to Fleur. This was odd for McGonagall because she was no longer being her normally, formal self. Whenever she addressed something of vital importance, she usually would stand and talk directly to them. However Minerva McGonagall was neither standing nor looking at any of them. She just kept staring ahead of her and shaking her head. Although they were all sitting on the edge of their seats in anticipation, waiting to find out who the spy was, no one dared say anything to her.
At last, Tonks broke the silence. “Minerva, are you okay?” she asked in a small, worried voice.
Everyone held their breath, waiting to see how she would respond. Minerva looked at Tonks, “I will be,” she sighed. “This day has been quite…” she trailed off, searching for the right word. “Informative, I guess you could say.” There was an audible sigh of relief from the room once McGonagall started speaking because then they knew that it was safe for them to talk again.
“Did Draco tell you anything useful?” Remus asked.
McGonagall took in a deep breath. “Yes actually, he did. And what he said makes perfect sense. I believe him, I really do. And Molly and Arthur believe him too.”
Again there was silence, until finally, Remus asked the question they had all been dying to hear the answer to since Draco and the others had left the room. “So then, who is the spy, Minerva?”
McGonagall looked Lupin straight in the eyes. “It’s Percy Weasley,” she answered. Everyone’s jaw dropped in shock. No one could believe it. A loud BANG sounded from upstairs, causing everyone in the room to jump.
Fred punched the wall. Hard. The loud banging sound his fist had made when it hit the wood reverberated off the walls, intensifying the sound, causing everyone in the room jump. Everyone, that is, except for Molly. Nothing it seemed could phase her anymore. She was still lying on the bed, curled in to a ball, weeping. You would think, based on her reaction, that her son had just been killed. But he hadn’t died at all. What he did do though was so much worse. It was way worse than anything she ever could have imagined.
“That bastard!” Fred shouted. “I always knew he couldn’t be trusted, but this? How could he do something like this to us?”
“If I ever see him again, I swear I’ll kill him,” George said. This caused Molly to cry even louder.
“Boys, that’s enough!” Arthur yelled. “Your mother is already dealing with a lot right now as it is. Do you honestly think that she wants to hear one of her children conspiring to kill one of their brothers? No! And quite frankly, neither do I!”
“But dad, he-”
“Don’t you but dad me, Frederick Weasley.” Charlie, Bill and George gasped. The three of them exchanged glances. Never, in all their years together, heard had they ever heard their father call Fred by his full-name before. They knew he was being serious now and neither of them dared to defend Fred now, even though they all secretly wanted Percy dead as well.
“Your mother and I have just lost a son,” Arthur continued. “You have just lost a brother! Can’t you use a bit more tact that that?”
“Dad,” Fred shot, “we haven’t lost anyone. Percy isn’t dead. Yet,” he added.
“No you’re right, he’s not,” Arthur agreed. “He’s way worse than dead, he’s a Death Eater!”
Fred was silent after this. All their father had managed to tell them thus far was that Percy was the spy. Hearing Arthur call Percy a Death Eater aloud seemed to give the severity of the situation a more distinct sense of loss than that of death. They all simultaneously realized that they would never again be able to speak to their brother. He was as good as dead to all of them, even though he was still alive. And how in the world could they ever be expected to fight against there own flesh and blood in battle?
“A Death Eater?” said George in disbelief. “As in, All hail Voldemort, long live the pure-bloods, lets go kill someone, I have a Dark Mark; that kinda Death Eater?”
“Yes that kind of Death Eater!” Arthur snapped. “What other kind of Death Eater is there?”
“But dad, Percy would never,” Bill began. “I-I mean, he’s our brother! We grew up together, went to school together, I was there when he was born. I helped baby-sit him, change his diapers, feed him, all of that! I was even there when he learned how to use magic for the first time. He couldn’t possibly be…” Bill shook his head tensely.
“I know,” Molly spoke for the first time. “How do you think it makes me feel, Billy? He was my baby!”
“This is all my fault,” Arthur said. “If I hadn’t argued with him that day, if only I had at least tried to stop him from leaving-”
“Arthur, NO!” Molly shrieked. “Don’t you dare start blaming yourself for all of this! None of it is your fault, d’ you hear me?”
Arthur sighed. “I hear you Molls, but technically the only reason Voldemort has consistently been one step ahead of us is because I have been telling Percy everything! I see him at work everyday and he always asks me about the order and how we’re doing and what we’re doing. Like an idiot, I told him everything he wanted to know in hopes that maybe, just maybe, he would one day want to come back home and fight alongside us again. I thought we were making progress. I thought that I was getting through to him. And sure, maybe it was a tad bit odd that all he ever wanted to talk about was the Order, and not his immediate family, but I never questioned it. Never. Not once. Because, at least he was talking to me about something! At least for a moment I had my son back again, for a however short a period of time it was.”
Arthur ran a hand through his already messed up hair and sighed. He looked extremely exhausted as he looked up at them all and continued. “Now I find out that everything I ever shared with Percy, every word I said to him, he was going right back and repeating it all to Voldemort! I never spoken a word of any of it to Percy because he is not in the Order. I have put us all at risk!”
Molly sat up and placed a hand on her husband’s shoulder. “Honey, no one here blames you for what happened,” she said again. “You couldn’t have possibly known, I mean, who would have suspected him of doing this? You were just trying to get our son back, dear, you weren’t doing anything wrong!”
“I know that Molls,” he sighed. “But it still feels like I did everything wrong!”
“Are you going to be okay, mum?” Charlie asked.
“Eventually,” she sighed. “Once the initial shock of it all wares off. I’s just so hard to believe.”
“You know this’ll be all over the news once the Prophet catches wind of this,” Bill warned. “Does the Minister know yet?”
“Yeah, Rufus knows” Arthur said.
“How did he find out before we did?” George asked.
“Yeah,” agreed Fred. “And why hasn’t he had Percy arrested yet?”
“Because Draco told him last week during his trial and the Minister wanted to give him a chance to tell us before making it public,” Arthur answered. “To be quite honest, I would have much rather found out this way than by having to read about it in the paper and find out right along with the rest of the world. At least now we have some time to prepare ourselves for what’s to come.”
“And speaking of finding out before everybody else,” George cut in. “Someone has to tell Ginny.”
“Don’t worry about your sister,” Arthur said. “Minerva is taking her out of school and bringing her home tonight. She has already even agreed to give Ginny a week off if she so desires it because, once this goes public, people won’t leave her alone about it.”
“You really think it’ll go public within the next few days?” Charlie asked.
“Well, now that Draco has told us,” Arthur continued. “I imagine it won’t be long till Rufus carts Percy off to Azkaban. They can’t possibly allow him to walk free, not with a Dark Mark etched in his wrist. The only way Percy can escape Azkaban would be to make a run for it and go into hiding.”
“Yeah, but he doesn’t know that anyone is on to him yet,” said Fred. “So he won’t run away because he isn’t expecting to be arrested anytime soon. We have him right in the palm of our hands!”
“Do you want to see your brother arrested?” Molly snapped.
“Well this is Percy we’re talking about here after all,” Fred chuckled. “Perfect little Percy the Prefect.”
“This. Is. Not. Funny.” Molly was spitting out every word through clenched teeth. She was glaring at Fred with a deadly look that made all of them want to run and hide.
“Geeze mum, calm down. I was only kidding,” Fred assured her. “Of coarse I don’t want to see Percy get arrested! Do you have any idea of what having a known Death Eater in the family will do to our business? Our family name has always been good throughout the wizarding community and Percy just had to come along and trash it! Now everything we’ve worked for will all mean nothing! People aren’t going to respect a single one of us now, all because of him!”
Another brief moment of silence passed. “He’s right Molly,” Arthur said softly. “I can’t even begin to imagine the comments I’m gonna hear and the stares I’m gonna get from people at work once they all find out about this. It certainly is going to make life a lot harder. More complicated than it already is.”
“Oh great,” Molly scoffed. “That’s just what we need is more complications!”
“Poor Molly,” sighed Tonks. “I can’t even imagine how much pain this news must cause her. And Arthur, he works at the ministry. doesn’t he see Percy everyday?”
“Yes. And they’ve talked,” said McGonagall, “talked about the Order. Talked about our plans and where we were going, what we were doing. And then Percy went right back to Voldemort and repeated everything to Voldemort.”
“How can you be so sure it’s Percy though?” Nevil asked.
“Because Draco just told us it was him,” she answered.
“How can you be so sure that Draco wasn’t lying?” Nevil demanded. “I don’t trust him at all! And I can’t believe they let him stay here after all the trouble he’s caused.”
“I would take Draco’s word over anybody else’s,” McGonagall stated. “He has spent more time with Voldemort that anyone here. More time even than most of the Death Eaters have, seeing how as he was forced to stay at Voldemort’s side for the last three months that he was there. Draco knows a lot about Voldemort than you think. I trust him and I’m taking his word for it on this.” McGonagall paused and looked around the room at each of them in turn. “Now then, does anyone else care to question my judgment today, or are you all finished? If you seriously view me as an incompetent leader, and you really don’t think I know what I am doing by now, I will step down if that’s what you all want.”
“Minerva, no!” Tonks exclaimed. “That’s not what we think at all! Why would you say something like that?”
“Well what am I supposed to think? You question me about Saleena and the private mission that I sent her on, you accuse Roxi of being a spy just because she is from a different country and now you won’t believe what I am telling you about our spy just because the source of my information is Draco Malfoy. I’m beginning to get the feeling that you don’t think I am capable of making decisions that are best for the team anymore,” she accused. “Especially when you question every move I make.”
“We’re sorry,” Tonks apologized on behalf of the group. We honesty didn’t mean to make you feel that way Minerva. Did we guys?” Tonks stared directly at Fleur as she asked her last question.
“What?” she scoffed. “Of coarse you know I did not mean to upset her like zat.”
“Yeah, and I’m sorry too professor,” Nevil apologized. “I didn’t mean to hurt you. You are a great leader.”
“We just worry about too much, that’s all,” said Remus. “With so much going on, it’s getting harder and harder to take risks anymore. We can’t be too careful.”
“Well I thank all of you for being honest with me at least,” McGonagall said. “However, I kneed you all to know that before I make a decision, I carefully consider all of the options and view it from every angle before I make it final. I interviewed both Draco and Roxi before I allowed them to step one foot into this room tonight. And as for Saleena, do you really think I would send her out on a her first mission for us alone if I didn’t trust her? I am completely confident that she can do the job I sent her on.”
“And we believe you,” Lupin said.
“Thank you Remus,” McGonagall said, standing up. “Well, I guess that about wraps up our meeting for tonight. If there are no other questions or concerns, then I need to get going. I have some business back at the school to attend to and I need to escort Ginny Weasley back here so that she can be with her family tomorrow when this hit’s the news. I‘m sure people will be raving about this for weeks to come.”
“Goodnight Minerva,” said Tonks.
“Goodnight you guys.” After she left, Nevil and Luna followed her out.
Remus too got up and kissed his wife. “I gotta go too, honey,” he said. “It’s my night to patrol and it looks like I’m going to be working by myself tonight. I don’t expect that Charlie and Bill will be up for much tonight.”
“Just be careful Remus,” she urged him. “Please! I‘ll stay here and make sure that Molly is okay. I want to be here for her if she needs any help with anything around the house. I don’t think she‘ll be up for much cleaning for the next few days.”
“I think that’s a great idea,” he told her. “Goodnight dear.” He kissed her again and then he left. The only people left in the room after that were Fleur, Tonks and Roxi. Together, the three of them talked silently amongst themselves while they waited for Mrs. Weasly…
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