Memories are nightmares you can't wake up from. ~ Sadie Rai Hudec
Nate fell asleep about fifteen minutes after Harry, Ron, and Hermione left. But he wish he didn't. His dreams were haunted with memories.
In his dream Nate was in his living room with his little sister Jessica, his parents in the kitchen. Jessica had her summer homework spend out on the floor.
“ No,” Jessica said frustrated, “ That's not what the book says! It says that the witch hunts didn't start in Wales until the late 1400s.”
“ Trust me, Jess, they started in 1439.” Nate insisted, “ I had Binns, too.”
“ Trust Binns to give us a two foot essay right after the headmaster died! None of the other teachers gave us homework, not even McGonagall, we don't even know if Hogwarts will reopen. I don't want to go back even if it does.”
“ You're going back to school.” Mrs. Williams called from the kitchen.
“ It won't be the same!” Jessica whined, “ I don't want to go back if all my friends are gone and Professor Dumbledore isn't there!”
“ Minerva will be a good headmistress.” Mr. Williams assured his daughter. “ It's terrible that Dumbledore was killed but we have to keep fighting, and for you that means you have to go to school and get educated.”
“ I want to fight with you!” Jessica complained, “ I want to join the Order of the Phoenix with Nathan!”
“ I'm 18,” Nate reminded her, he didn't feel like reminding her that he wasn't a member yet, he didn't even know what the Order did (other then fight Voldemort), how many members there were, or where they stayed, “ You're only 14, you can join in three years.”
“ Harry Potter was a member when he was fifteen!” Jessica objected.
“ No,” Mrs. Williams said gently, She looked really uncomfortable, Nate knew she was really against him joining the Order (the main reason he wasn't a member yet) but he wasn't sure why, his mother was always such a guarded person when it came to sharing her real thoughts.“ Harry Potter isn't a member of the Order, he will be soon, but he isn't now.”
“ What will witch hunts do to help me in the fight.” whined Jessica.
“ Lets give the homework a rest for now.” Nate suggested, “ You still have a month, that's plenty of time.” Jess quickly agreed, slamming the big book shut and stuffing her things away.
“ Wash for dinner,” Mrs. Williams said, “ If you're not doing homework you can help with the...” she broke off starting terrified at the corner where Nate saw a Danger Detector flashing bright red and green lights. Nobody moved they all listened like deers in headlights. It wasn't until they all heard a creek and whispering from outside the door did Mr. Williams grab Jessica around the waist, covering her mouth with his hand and race with her out of the sitting room, probably to the basement to hide. Nate felt his mother snatch the neck of his jumper and pull him as quietly as she could into his bedroom where she pushed him into the closet, squeezed herself in, and closed the door.
Nate worked his way around his mother and the mound of junk to the wall which he knew was the kitchen and pressed his ear to it. He heard the unmistakable sound of someone bursting in the door and several people rushing in. He prayed that his father and sister made it to the basement where they could hide.
“ Search the house.” Someone demanded, “ They're here, the oven's on.” Nate heard his mother's frightened breathing in his ear, terror surged through him like poison, he held his breath as the raiding party's footsteps echoed on the hardwood floors. Please don't let them find Dad and Jess, he thought fiercely, Please, please let them check the upstairs first. Maybe if everyone was upstairs he could sneak out and find help. But to his dread he didn't hear any footsteps above him.
He didn't know whether a second or several weeks past before he heard a terribly familiar scream from underneath him. Then he heard his father yell, “ Jessica get behind me.” In a little more then a second four lights emanated from the floorboards first red, then black, then red again, finally green, Jessica screamed again, another flash of green. Nate found him self having to restrain his mother from running from their temporary sanctuary. Though he suddenly had an urge race downstairs and kill every death eater that dared enter his home, he knew he was no match for them, and nothing he did would help his dad and sister now.
The closet door flew open, Nate didn't see who it was because his mother hid him from whoever was there. But he heard her gasp. “ Severus.” She gasped, Nate looked around to see his old professor.
He looked cold and indifferent, he was going to kill them and not feel an ounce of guilt about it. Nate didn't have his wand, neither did Mrs. Williams. Snape raised his wand. Nate squeezed his mother's arm flinched away he knew he was going to die. But the light that hit him wasn't green like he anticipated, it was red, Mrs. Williams crumpled to the floor Nate screamed. A blue light hit Nate's legs, he felt like knives sliced his shins. He grabbed the edge of the wall trying to keep himself steady, he tried to charge at Snape, but with a flick of the wrist Snape sent him flying back, hitting the wall of the closet with a force that knocked him out.
Nate opened his eyes with a start he was back in the vivid orange room, a tall figure walking past him.
“ You sound like Harry.” the figure said sadly, it was Ginny Weasley, she seemed to have been adding things to the growing pile of stuff Hermione was sifting though earlier. “ Did you have a nightmare?”
“ Yeah,” he sighed, Ginny frowned, her brown eyes sympathetic.
“ Harry cries at night all the time,” Ginny explained walking over to Nate's bed and sitting on it, “ It gets worse every now and then, like after Dumbledore died, and Sirius, and Cedric; he doesn't like to tell us when some thing's really bothering him, so we just have to guess...guess what he's going through, he never...never opens up, he never lets anyone in, never.” She looked away, her eyes glistening. Nate didn't understand the emotions that her eyes were betraying. She shook her head and looked back at Nate. “ but if you ever need to talk, about what you're remembering, what you're having difficulty with, you can talk to me, I understand.”
“ Thank you.” Nate said simply, “ I'll remember that.”
“ You look hungry.” Ginny informed him, “ You look really, really hungry.”
“ I am,” said Nate, just then realizing how hungry he was. “ I'm starved.”
Ginny smiled, she was very pretty when she smiled. “ I'll go get you some stew,” she told him, “ Mum just made some, she was expecting you'd be hungry when you woke up, but she doesn't think you should try solid food yet.”
“ That'd be great. thanks.” He said.
She smiled at him and walked out of the room. Nate looked around the room; in Hermione's pile, there was a hand held, square mirror. He stiffly got out of bed, his legs shot with pain, he gridded his teeth, ignoring the pain. He limped over to the mirror, trying not to throw up from pain.
He reached the mirror and looked in it, he barely recognized the man looking back, Nate had always been handsome, but the boy in the mirror was gaunt, his face ashen and pale, his blond hair was stuck to his face and brown with dirt and dust, he could see his cheekbones gutting sharply out from his face, his blue eyes dull, with black and blue bags underneath them, his skin had a grayish-green tint to it. He sat down on the floor staring at the unfamiliar reflexion; cuts and bruises scattered around his cheeks, forehead, chin, and nose. He put the mirror down and looked at his body, he noticed that he wasn't wearing a shirt, but his upper abdomen was rapped in a clean, white bandage. But even with that, he could see every rib in his chest. Again he could see bruises and small gashes dapple his bare skin. His pants, which were cut off at the knee were tattered, exposing his lower legs. His shins looked worse then they felt. The were blackened and puffy, most defiantly infected, if not something more serious.
“ Nathan?” Ginny's voice called, Nate turned his head to see the red-head walking in with a tray of something. “ Why are you down there?” she asked putting the tray down on the dresser and walked swiftly over to him. “ Here.” She grabbed his arm and helped him up, she helped him over to his bed. “ Why were you down there?” she asked.
“ Um...mirror.” he said. “ I look like crap don't I?”
“ Kind of.” she admitted, “ Here eat this.” She said, resting the tray on his lap practically the second he lied down. “ It's my mums onion stew. When was the last time you ate?”
“ I've been here for two days right?” Nate asked. Ginny nodded, “ Then eight days.”
“ What happened?” she asked. Nate hesitated. “ Never mind I shouldn't pry.” She turned to walk away.
“ My house was attacked.” He said, she turned around. “ My dad, he got in Voldemort's way. I'm not even sure what he did, something for the Order, but what ever it was it pissed Voldemort off. So they attacked our house, Snape and some others. We were just getting ready for supper, just like any other evening, the next thing I know I was hiding in my own house, my sister and father were... They totally destroyed my house-the death eaters did- my mum and I had to run but we didn't know where to go. Me and her traveled together for either three or four days, it was hard to judge days like that, then I couldn't go any farther. So my mum left me, she promised she'd be right back, I was lying in London for a while, I'm not sure how long, again, it was hard to tell, but it was probably either two or three days. And then I came here and you know the rest.”
“ What about your father and sister?”
“ They died,” Nate admitted. “ My dad and Jessi, they just died. I'm her older brother, I should have protected her.”
“ Brothers can't always protect their sisters, they like to think they can, but they can't.” Ginny said.
“ Jessica wasn't just my sister,” Nate told her. “ She was my friend, my best friend. I was closer to her then I was to anyone else, she was my friend. And I let her down.”
Ginny opened her mouth and closed it several times before she finally replied, “ there is only so much you can do, I know brothers, I have six of them, they fancy themselves invincible, they think they can do anything, but the reality is older brothers are still human.” Nate didn't answer. “ Look, Nathan, I know there is nothing in the world I can say to make this any easier for you, but you can't blame yourself.”
Nate nodded. He didn't feel any better, but he appreciated the try. “ Thanks, Ginny.”
“ Eat, you need to build up your strength.” She stood up and left.
Author's note: well this is my second chapter, what do you think? I don't have much to say, so please comment, I know it's kind of dark now, but it gets fluffier, (for Duda exspecially) as it goes on ( the opposite of my last story) any ways please review!