“Would you look at this? This is absurd, no human being should ever have to do this much homework, Snape is off his rocker I swear!” Ronald Weasley ranted as he threw his quill across the table in frustration.
“Ron, it’s really not that big a deal, and if you had started the essay earlier like I had told you then maybe you wouldn’t be in this predicament. What happened to the homework planner that I gave you for Christmas last year, it would really help you at times like these.” Hermione stated not bothering to lift her head from the book she was immersed in.
“I just don’t understand why it’s necessary for us to write an essay on the uses of dragon’s blood in potion making, if it works once it’s in the potion than who really cares why?” Ron sighed as he laid his head on the table. Harry was used to their bickering about everything and anything so he didn’t bother to chime in and tell Ron that Hermione was probably right this time and that they should have listened to her, maybe then they wouldn’t be sitting in the common room alone at three in the morning rushing to be done. Although if Harry were to be completely honest he wasn’t really paying that much attention to his essay, for some time now he had been wondering where Ginny had gotten off to. She had gone off for a midnight fly a few hours ago, promising to be back soon and continue keeping Harry and the others company while they finished their essays, and yet it was now three in the morning and she still hadn’t returned. Harry was sure he had no reason to be worried, but he couldn’t shake that nagging feeling he had in the pit of his stomach.
“That has to be the most naïve thing I’ve ever heard you say Ronald, not knowing things like that could be dangerous and -” Hermione was cut off by a tap at the window. The three of them looked up to see an owl at the common room window sitting patiently waiting to be let in. Harry was closest so he opened the window to allow the bird entry.
“Who would be sending mail at this hour?” Harry asked. He looked at the note on the owl’s leg and realized that it was addressed to him. After untying the note the owl swooped back out of the window and into the night.
“Who would be sending you mail at this hour?” Ron snickered as Harry unfolded the parchment. “Did you recognize that owl, it looked awfully familiar?”
“It’s Malfoy’s.” Harry said in a deadened tone as his face paled. “This note is from Voldemort, he has Ginny.” There was a still and disbelieving silence before both Ron and Hermione jumped up from their seats to look over Harry’s shoulders at the note in his hand. The note stated that Ginny had been flying on the Quidditch pitch and lost control of one of the bludgers. She followed it and ended up off of the school grounds where a few Death Eaters had been stationed in order to keep watch on the school. Once they spotted her the Death Eaters were able to overcome her and bring her back to Voldemort’s hideout. Voldemort had obviously taken much glee in writing this ransom letter and instructed Harry to come to the castle where she was being held if he ever wished to see his “beloved blood-traitor girlfriend” alive again. Once the initial shock had worn off of the trio, fear started to set in.
“Do you think he’s telling the truth? But how can he be the castle is guarded by powerful enchantments, it‘s impossible to simply fly on or off the grounds.” Hermione asked in barely more than a whisper. Harry checked his watch.
“Ginny’s been gone for more than three hours, I was starting to get worried but I didn’t see how anything could go wrong but…” Harry trailed off, his voice shaking as he tried to think through the haze that was threatening to overcome his mind. How could he have let this happen? Wasn’t he supposed to be this powerful wizard who was going to defeat Voldemort and save the wizarding world? How was he supposed to do that if he couldn’t even keep his own girlfriend safe? Suddenly Harry sprang from his seat.
“Harry, where are you going?” Hermione asked alarmed.
“I’m going to find Ginny, where the hell do you think I’m going?” Harry yelled as he sprinted up the steps. They heard a door open and close, a little banging from above, and then the door again before Harry appeared at the foot of the steps again clutching his invisibility cloak, broom and a tattered piece of parchment. The other two stared at him for a moment before Ron nodded his head and followed Harry up the stairs and appeared next to him a few minutes later with his broom in hand. Both looked at Hermione expectantly.
“Don’t you think we should tell someone? Dumbledore would be able to help us; I think we should tell him before we do anything rash.” Hermione pleaded looking both scared and determined.
“Hermione, Dumbledore will be asleep right now, and don’t say that he would wake up for this because it’s not worth waiting for him. Besides you read the note, Voldemort said not to involve Dumbledore, he wants me, and I would rather him kill me than hurt Ginny in any way.” Harry said fiercely still fighting the panic trying to overwhelm him.
“Harry, are you really going to listen to Voldemort? He wants to kill you, he doesn’t care how he does it he just wants you dead, you need to be smart about this, I’m sure there’s a way that you can save Ginny and make sure you keep yourself safe as well. If we make a plan and talk to Dumbledore –” Hermione started.
“Hermione we don’t have time to plan and talk to Dumbledore!” Harry urged.
“This is my sister we’re talking about here we need to save her Hermione, how can you think about sitting around? I’m not going to let my sister sit there and be tortured by You-Know-Who!” Ron screamed.
“I’m not saying that Ron, but we need to be careful. I agree that we need to save Ginny but we need to do it so that we can all get out of it alive and safe.” Hermione tried to reason with the anxious boys.
“No, there will be no planning, we’ll plan on the way there but we need to get there as soon as possible.” Harry said walking towards the portrait hole.
“Okay, but Harry, can we at least check to make sure Ginny isn’t still here, so we don’t have a repeat of what happened with Sirius last year, we all only barely got out of there alive.” Hermione pleaded looking for some way to make the boys see reason.
“Fine.” Harry pulled out the beat up piece of parchment and opened it up. He placed his wand to the paper and muttered “I solemnly swear that I am up to no good.” Immediately lines started to appear on the paper, spreading out across the parchment like spider webs. As it finished up, Harry looked up and muttered, “I think that’s the only time I’ve said those words and actually not been up to no good.” Once the map was done revealing itself, Harry looked at it and scoured every corner of the map looking for the dot labeled Ginny Weasley. After a few minutes of staring, Harry was satisfied that she was nowhere in the castle or on the grounds. “She’s not on here, can we go now?” Harry said jerkily looking up from the map at Hermione.
“Okay, let me just get my cloak.” Hermione said shakily walking towards the staircase.
“You can borrow Seamus’ broomstick, I don’t think he’ll mind much.” Harry said going back up to his dormitory and returning wit Seamus’ broomstick in hand just as Hermione returned from her room wrapped in her cloak. Harry handed her the broom and they walked towards the portrait hole.
“Wait we won’t fit under the Invisibility Cloak with the brooms in our hands.” Hermione pointed out. She pulled out her wand and pointed it at each of them in turn muttering something under her breath. They felt a cold sensation trickle down their bodies and when they looked it was if each of them had become a chameleon and matched whatever it was that they were standing in front of. “It’s a Disillusionment Charm. It’ll keep us safe in the castle and while we’re flying so Muggles won’t see us.” After a quick nod of their heads the three of them proceeded out of the portrait hole, Harry keeping an eye on the Marauder’s Map so they weren’t surprised by any teachers.
They managed to make it to the door undetected, and as soon as they had hit fresh air Harry mounted his broom and the others followed suit. Harry sped out over the Quidditch pitch looking down, hoping beyond hope that she was still there practicing. His stomach sank even lower as he realized there was no sign of Ginny and he noticed the Quidditch ball crate still sitting open on the pitch, Ginny wouldn’t have left it out. Harry sped out over the Forbidden Forest with the other two in tow, and was soon off the school grounds. He flew higher, getting colder and colder, the anger at the thought of Ginny being tortured keeping him warm and urging him forward. Soon the countryside below them turned to cities and not long after was back to wild country side. Harry realized that they were in the middle of nowhere; he had no idea where they were and was only slightly confident that they were still even in England, he was simply following the directions Voldemort had left him in the note. Eventually a castle began to rise over the horizon, getting bigger as they approached until they were right upon it. Harry landed a few feet away from the entrance, staring warily at the door expecting Death Eaters to jump out and attack the three of them.
“Why do you think there aren’t any guards at the door?” Hermione asked tentatively.
“Because he knew that I would come and he wants me to come into the castle before he attacks so there’s no chance of me escaping before he does whatever it is he needs to do.” Harry said knowing he was right and walking towards the door.
“If this is all a trap, then do you think it’s a good idea for you to go in there?” Hermione asked.
“I don’t have a choice Hermione, he has Ginny and I won’t let him hurt her, I have to go in there, it doesn’t matter what’s waiting for me.” Harry said fiercely, placing his hand on the door, which swung open at his touch. Harry left his broom by the door and the others did the same. The castle was slightly smaller than Hogwarts although it looked much older. They walked through the front door into an enormous entrance hall, old and beaten up with cobwebs all over and hanging from the chandelier. The state of the place resembled that of Grimmauld Place before the Order had started cleaning it up for habitation the previous year. Directly ahead of them was a giant staircase, a set of stairs on each side coming together on a balcony on the second floor before continuing higher up. On the first floor between the two sets of stairs there was a set of huge double doors leading to another room. The entire castle seemed quiet, nothing could be heard, and Harry didn’t like that. He walked forward to the double doors and placed his ear to them, listening for any sound, but he couldn’t hear anything.
“Let’s go upstairs.” Harry said as he started towards the stairs, the other two followed. On the second floor there were doors on both sides of the hallway, which continued down farther than any of them could see because it was so dark. Quietly, Harry, Hermione and Ron traveled down the hallway listening intently for a sound, waiting for a Death Eater to jump out from one of the rooms and attack them. However, a few minutes later and they were back at the staircase, utterly confused, and, if it were possible, even more scared. Harry nodded towards the staircase and they continued up to the third floor. Halfway up the second set of stairs, a bloodcurdling scream met their ears. They stopped and looked at each other for a split second before all three of them screamed “Ginny!” turned and began sprinting up the stairs towards the fourth floor, where the scream had come from. As they ran the screams continued and became louder as they approached the door at the very end of the hallway on the fourth floor. As soon as he reached the door Harry threw it open with as much force as he had, but the sight that met his eyes stopped him dead in his tracks.
The room they had walked into was gigantic, bigger than any of them would have guessed just by looking at the door. To the right of the door stood a gigantic stage, raised higher than the rest of the room, and on the stage stood what looked like every single Death Eater at Voldemort’s disposal. They were all cloaked and masked, and every single skull face turned to look at Harry, Ron and Hermione as they opened the door. At the very front of the stage stood Voldemort, just as scary and ugly as he had been the last time Harry had seen him, and his wand was held out in front of him, pointing at the wall where a limp figure hung, chained to the wall. As Voldemort turned to look at the newcomers, his face broke into a wicked smile and his wand turned to face Harry. Harry stood staring at Ginny, she looked as if she had been tortured and Harry could not tell if she was alive or not. Harry’s entire body had gone numb, and he was vaguely aware of Ron and Hermione standing next to him, Ron staring blankly at Ginny and Hermione looking towards the massive amounts of Death Eaters that they were going to have to take on by themselves. Before Harry had time to recover from the shock of seeing his girlfriend limp on the wall, he felt his body moving, flying really, towards Ginny. But just as he got close to her he was jerked around and found his back against the wall, he was chained just like Ginny was; he had had no time to defend himself for his wand had been hanging limply at his side once he opened the door. Harry looked to his right to find Ron and Hermione in the same position as him, both looking scared and surprised, and then to his left. He could tell that Ginny was still breathing, that was a good sign, but she seemed to be unconscious. His wand had fallen at his feet when he was chained to the wall, and there was nothing that he could have done with it anyway. He noticed that Ron and Hermione had been disarmed as well before turning his attention to Voldemort and the army of Death Eaters behind him.
“Well, well, if it isn’t the elusive Harry Potter. I told you he would come to save the day, just like he always does. The stupid boy has yet to realize that love is just a weakness of his and it will always land him in situations like this.” Voldemort taunted. “However, you need not worry any more Potter, for this will be the last time you’re going to have to worry about saving anyone.” Voldemort turned away from the gang to face his Death Eaters. “For years now they have said that Harry Potter is stronger than I am, that he has powers to rival mine, but they were WRONG! He is nothing but a below average teenager who has gotten lucky multiple times and has managed to escape from me due to my mistakes. But that ends here. There will be no more mistakes, nothing can go wrong this time, he has no way out - this will be the end of the great Harry Potter.”
The entire gathering of Death Eaters began to laugh at Voldemort’s words and looked on hungrily, waiting for their master to finish the job he had been trying to do for 15 years now. Voldemort turned back to the gang chained to the wall. “Now Harry, as I’m sure you’ve already guessed, I’ve gotten to know your little girlfriend here pretty well, and she has already suffered at my hands quite a bit. However, you did not get the pleasure of seeing this, and what good is being tortured if your loved ones aren’t even around to feel sorry for you? So before I kill you, I want you to see exactly what I plan on doing to every single person that tries to defy me once I have gained power. And what more effective way to show you then by using you dear friends?” Voldemort raised his wand and pointed it at Ron.
“No!” Harry screamed.
“Crucio!” Voldemort belted and immediately Ron started screaming and writhing, struggling against his chains to be freed from the pain of the curse. After a few minutes Voldemort raised his wand and Ron became limp, breathing heavily, his eyes half closed. Then Voldemort turned his wand on Hermione. “Crucio!” he yelled again, and Hermione screamed in pain, before going limp just as Ron had a few minutes later once Voldemort had lifted the curse. “How does it feel to see your friends in such pain Potter? How does it feel to know that all of this is your fault?” Voldemort taunted.
“No Harry, this isn’t your fault, don’t listen to him.” Ginny had regained consciousness and she struggled to lift her head and comfort her boyfriend.
“Well, I see you’ve still got some fight in you. Crucio!” Voldemort pointed his wand at Ginny and she began to scream and writhe in pain as the others had done. Once he was done with her Voldemort began to laugh again. “Do you see Harry, this is what you’ve caused; your friends must now suffer because you were too stubborn to just give in. But don’t worry, they won’t suffer alone, you’ll get the same treatment as them in due time, but first I want you to watch your friends suffer and die before I give you the sweet ending of death.” Voldemort raised his wand to point it back at Ron, but as he did so a strong wind swept across the room and a shield of some sort appeared, dividing the room in two, Voldemort and his Death Eaters on one side blocked off from Harry and the others on the wall. Then there was a loud crack and a person appeared in the middle of the room, covered in a cloak so that the gang could not tell who it was, or even if it was male or female. The mysterious person had one hand extended towards the shield, as if they were performing a spell to produce the shield, but the hand contained no wand. The Death Eaters immediately began sending spell after spell at the person and the shield itself, hoping to break it down, but to no avail, the shield didn’t even falter and the person looked as if it required no effort for them to keep the spell going and ward off their attacks. Voldemort looked confused at first, and then after a few moments of staring at the mystery savior, understanding seemed to dawn on his face and he raised a hand, signaling the Death Eaters to halt their attack.
“So we meet at last.” Voldemort had a triumphant look on his face, like a child on Christmas morning.
“It’s been too long.” Once the mystery person had spoken Harry and the others were able to tell that it was a girl, and she seemed to have just as much contempt in her voice as Harry felt every time he thought about Voldemort. Though they could not see her face, there was something about her presence that was calming, they felt safe now that she was there. She exuded power, as if nothing could stop her. “However, unlike you I won’t allow my enemies the chance to escape by droning on about everything that bothers me.” Keeping her left hand extended toward the shield she raised her right arm and pointed it at the gang, immediately the chains holding them released and Harry, Ron, Hermione and Ginny fell to the ground. “Grab your wands and get out of here I’ll meet you outside.” As their savior spoke Voldemort began to talk again.
“Your powers are incredible, and normally you would be the clear victor in this situation, however you are not the only one here with your abilities. Now!” The girl’s head whipped around from the gang to look at Voldemort and she barely had time to register the spell that was being thrown at her. Amazingly, the spell penetrated her shield, something none of the other spells had been able to do, but after passing through the shield the spell was slightly deflected and it whooshed past her head putting a hole in the wall where Harry’s head had previously been. The current caused by the spell as it passed her caused the hood of her cloak to fall down, and the mystery girl’s identity was revealed. She looked shocked at what had happened and turned to look at the Death Eater who had cast the spell, waving her right hand to remove his mask. Draco Malfoy stood there looking dumbfounded as their eyes met and the girl paused. “What are you doing? Attack her again while her guard is down!” Voldemort yelled at Malfoy, who raised his left hand to shoot another spell at the girl. She was prepared for it this time and managed to deflect it. She turned back to Harry and the others.
“Did I not tell you to get the hell out of here?” she yelled at the gang who stood there staring at her dumbfounded. Harry scrambled to grab his wand and help Ginny who was much weaker than the rest of them, the whole time staring at their mystery savior. It was impossible, absolutely impossible that she could be standing there, it made no sense. Suddenly a wand appeared in her hand and she threw it at him. “It’s Ginny’s. Take it and get the hell out of here, grab your brooms and I’ll meet you outside. Stop staring at me like an idiot I promise I’ll explain everything later just get out of here unless you want to die!” she screamed at them. She couldn’t understand how they could be that stupid, they had just been chained to a wall and tortured and she was giving them a way out, you would think they wouldn’t need to be told twice to get the hell out. Finally they started to run towards the door. She contracted the shield so that the Death Eaters and Voldemort had less space while walking backwards towards the door as well. Just as she reached the door she lowered the shield, turned and sprinted after the others.
“I want the girl and Potter alive, kill the others!” Voldemort screamed and the Death Eaters ran forward to chase the teenagers. Harry looked behind him to see Voldemort’s entire army following them, and he knew they were doomed, the girl may be strong but there was no way she could hold all of those Death Eaters off now, and even if she could their broomsticks would never get them out of range fast enough. He saw the girl close behind them, firing spells over her shoulder not bothering to look at what was behind her. As they passed a giant statue against the wall he saw her wave her right hand at it as she passed and it came crashing down on the floor, stopping the Death Eaters in their tracks, and he could hear Voldemort far behind them all yelling about capturing him and the girl and killing everyone else, insisting that they could not get away, not again. Soon Harry and the others were sprinting down the stairs, two at a time, and then through the front doors. They paused for a moment to grab their brooms and then continued to run, soon a car came into sight, Mr. Weasley’s old flying car, and it looked as if it had been restored, and they assumed that that was how the girl had gotten there. Just as they reached the car they heard screams from behind them and turned in time to see the girl holding her hand out as a broom soared past the other Death Eaters and they jumped to get out of its way. As soon as the broom had cleared the doorway the doors were slammed shut and the girl caught the broom in her left hand. Then right before their eyes, with one spectacular sweep of her right hand, the entire castle began to crumble. It started with the towers, weakening and sinking into the castle as the rest of it collapsed.
“I believe this is yours.” the girl said handing the broom to Ginny. “Get in the car, hurry.” she said more calmly then before as she hopped into the driver’s side and started the car. Once the rest of them were seated inside she hit the gas and then pushed a button on the dashboard and the car began to rise into the air. Just as she revved the engine and began to pull away, one of the towers from the castle fell and landed exactly where the car had been moments before. As they sped away the gang turned around just in time to see the entire castle fall to its knees, nothing but a pile of rubble, and they wondered whether that was the end of Voldemort and his Death Eaters. “They all got out, every – last – one of them.” she said with as much hate as she had had when talking to Voldemort, they looked at each wondering how she had known what they were thinking. They turned back to the front of the car, and Harry continued to stare intently at the girl in the driver’s seat, trying to think of any way that could explain her existence. The longer he stared at her the more confused he became. She had flowing red hair that fell just below her shoulder with bangs and a light complexion; he had seen her face many times before, dreamt about it even. But it was her eyes that bothered him even more, if that were even possible. He opened his mouth to ask her who she was, but as he did she began to reach inside her cloak and a few seconds later her hand emerged with a small crystal vial containing a blood red liquid. Eyes still firmly on the skies and her left hand on the steering wheel she shifted slightly in her seat to hand the vial back to Ginny.
“Here, drink this. It’s a blood replenishing potion it’ll make you feel better.” Ginny took the bottle from her but did not uncork. She stared from the mystery girl to the vial to Harry, Hermione and Ron wondering whether it was safe. After a few minutes the girl turned around to look at Ginny and realized that the vial remained untouched. “I haven’t poisoned it you know, it’s perfectly safe, and if you don’t drink it you’ll probably pass out in the next few minutes.” Ginny made no movement to uncork the vial. “Ugh, I don’t see why you have to be difficult I did just save you after all. If you don’t believe me give the potion to Hermione, I’m sure she would be able to tell you whether it’s been tampered with.”
Hermione looked shocked at the fact that the girl knew her name but had no time to inquire as she turned back around in her seat to fly the car. Hermione took the vial from Ginny and uncorked it. She lifted it to her nose sniffed a few times and made a foul face before pouring a drop of the potion on her finger while Harry, Ron and Ginny watched. Hermione felt the drop of the potion between her two fingers and after a few minutes brought it up to her mouth and touched the potion with the very tip of her tongue. She made another foul face before announcing “It’s a blood replenishing potion alright, hasn’t been touched.” She handed the vial to Ginny who downed it in one gulp. She grimaced and immediately the color came back in her face and she looked much brighter and happier.
“I told you, I took it from Madam Pomfrey’s store myself, I’m not here to hurt you I’m here to help you.” the girl said in an exasperated tone.
“How do you know Madam Pomfrey?” Ron asked.
She paused before answering, “You’ll understand everything once we get back to Hogwarts. Now stop asking me questions will you I’m trying to fly here.” They could tell that they had hit a nerve by asking her that and thought that if they continued to ask her questions she would eventually break and tell them at least her name. However, for the remainder of the car ride she continually answered their questions with “You’ll find out soon enough.” and nothing more. After a solid hour of this Harry began to lose his patience. Finally, Harry could take no more and it was obvious that her stubbornness was too much for him to handle when she looked like that. He threw himself across her from the passenger seat and flung her hands away from the steering wheel.
Taking control of the car himself Harry roughly landed the car on the street below them. The girl, being so taken aback by his sudden attack, had no time to stop him before they were already on the ground. The girl stared out of the window before turning to Harry and saying, “You know, you’re lucky that this is Hogsmeade and were right by Hogwarts, otherwise I would be very pissed that you landed this car before we were completely safe.”
“Get out of the car, now!” Harry yelled. “Especially you.” He directed the last part at the mysterious girl. Once out, Harry, Ron, Hermione and Ginny stood side by side facing the girl in the dark outside of the Three Broomsticks, all eyes staring at the mystery woman who should have been dead. Suddenly, Harry walked right up to her, grabbed her by the shoulders and looking directly in her eyes said in a deadly whisper, “Who are you? Where did you come from? Why do you look…like…my mother?” The girl stared intently at Harry, a piteous look on her face, as if it pained her to see Harry this way. Finally she dropped her gaze from Harry and stared at the ground. After a few moments she opened her mouth and looked back at Harry. But as soon as her eyes met his she closed her mouth and began to look somewhere slightly over his left shoulder a new look on her face, the kind a child wears when they’ve been caught doing something wrong.
“I think I can answer that for you Harry, however I believe that we would be better served to have this conversation within the confines of the castle if you don’t mind waiting a little while longer.” The entire gang whipped around to stare at the same place the mystery girl had been looking, and there stood Professors Dumbledore, McGonagall and Snape, each wearing looks of mingled frustration, pity, relief and anger. McGonagall and Snape stopped as they approached the gang, but Dumbledore continued to walk forward until he stood next to Harry. He placed his hand on Harry’s shoulder and looked him in the eye, “I know this is all very confusing for you right now Harry, but I promise you there is an explanation, and you will get it. However, I think it best if this conversation is held in my office where we do not risk being overheard by the kinds of people we do not want to have access to this kind of information.” Dumbledore then turned his attention to the girl who immediately dropped her gaze to the ground. “And what do you have to say for yourself Lily, I believe I expressly told you that you are not to leave the castle without permission and extensive protection. These safety measures were not put in place for us to exercise our magical prowess Lily they –”
“I don’t give a damn about the safety measures, he was in trouble! He needed my help! He was chained to the damn wall, they all were, they weren’t going to get out of there alive without my help, unless you were planning on strolling into Voldemort’s castle and helping them yourself, but you couldn’t do that because you didn’t even know they had left until I told you. I was their only hope, if I hadn’t shown up they would have died and we would all be living under Voldemort’s rule. So you can punish me all you want but I don’t regret doing it.” The girl, who they now knew was named Lily, folded her arms and stared defiantly at Dumbledore, as if daring him to punish her. However, Dumbledore said nothing but a smirk played on his face as he gazed upon the rebel girl. He turned to the rest of the group and his smile became more pronounced.
“Well there’s no reason why we should keep you all waiting any longer, let us proceed back to the castle, I shall send someone down to retrieve the car.” Dumbledore began to walk towards the castle and the gang followed. As they approached the gates Lily waved her right hand and they opened to allow them passage. They continued to walk towards the castle, through the front doors and up the Grand Staircase until they stood in front of the gargoyles that guarded the entrance to Dumbledore’s office. “Blood Pops” Dumbledore said, and the gargoyle nodded his head and jumped to the side to allow them to enter. They stepped onto the staircase and it started to turn and bring them up, until finally they stopped at a finished oak door. Dumbledore turned the doorknob and let them all into his office. Dumbledore strode to his desk and sat at the chair behind it, McGonagall and Snape stood slightly to the left of his desk, leaning against the wall, and the gang filed into the four chairs facing Dumbledore’s desk. Lily, however, took a seat on the edge of Dumbledore’s desk, as if she was quite at home in the office. Harry stared intently from her to Dumbledore waiting for an explanation, Dumbledore stared politely at Harry, but Lily kept her gaze on the ground, as if she was ashamed. When nothing had been said, Harry decided to make the first move.
“What’s going on? Who is she Professor?” Harry asked, trying to sound polite through his urgency.
“Her name is Lily Marie Potter, named, as I’m sure you can tell, after your mother – her mother.” Dumbledore said slowly, his fingertips pressed together and his head resting on top of them. Harry looked at him stunned.
“What do you mean her mother?” he asked.
“Lily is your sister, your twin sister.” Dumbledore allowed the knowledge to sink in before continuing.
“What do you mean my twin sister?” Harry asked completely dumbfounded, unable to grasp the information being told to him. Everyone else in the room was completely silent, staring at Dumbledore, Harry or Lily.
“When your mother found out she was pregnant, she was told she was having not one child, but two. As you are already aware there was a prophecy made, a prophecy which could have referred to one of two boys, and due to Voldemort’s actions, you were chosen. On the day that Voldemort decided to attack you, two more prophecies were made. These prophecies were influenced by Voldemort’s decision to attack you instead of Neville Longbottom, and these prophecies were what ultimately sealed your sister’s fate. Once Voldemort decided that you were the threat that had been foreseen in the first prophecy, he made plans to attack. During the course of executing these plans he overheard the first of the next two prophecies, this one foretold of a girl, born to the same parents as the boy, and she would possess powers and insight to rival those of even the chosen one. This prophecy cemented in Voldemort’s mind that you were the one that needed to be killed, being that Neville had no siblings and you had a sister, therefore you must be the chosen one, and you must be killed. But now there was an even greater threat to him, this girl from the second prophecy, someone with powers and insight even greater than yours, she must be stopped as well. And as if her abilities weren’t enough to incite his rage, the fact that she was a she at all made it even worse. A female that was able to overpower him, take his place as the ruler of the wizarding world? Voldemort would have no such thing. He refused to be replaced, let alone by a female. And that was what made sure that you and Lily were attacked. After you both survived, it was a miracle, and my decision to place you in the care of your aunt and uncle was challenged. You see, I knew that should Voldemort ever rise again, and at the time I thought it likely, he would not stop in his quest to kill Lily. His hatred for you was strong yes, but it could never compare to his disdain at the thought of having a female exist who had powers that exceeded his, the thought was unfathomable for him, and should he ever come back to power I knew that his wits would leave him in his quest for her destruction. He would make no time for discretion or strategy, he would ravage every Muggle town in England until she was dead, even if he could not be sure that she was there, the protection that surrounded the two of you at your aunt and uncle’s would not stop him, he would simply destroy everything in the hopes that she was in there somewhere, and I couldn’t let that happen. I couldn’t stand by and watch innocent people be killed before they even knew what was happening, so I decided that the best thing to do was to kill Lily myself, or at least as far as the world was concerned. Since your mother and father were already in hiding by the time the two of you were born, few people even knew that Lily and James Potter had had twins.
So after the attack it was easy for me to simply tell those that knew of her existence that she had died in the attack along with Lily and James, and you, Harry had been the sole survivor. My plan was to keep Lily here, in Hogwarts with me, hidden from the world, confined to the castle, and while it was simple enough for one child, I could hardly hope to be successful in the endeavor should I take on two children. My only choice was to give you to the Dursleys, as originally planned, tell the rest of the world that Lily had died, and keep her in the castle safe from harm, that way should Voldemort return, he would think he had succeeded in killing her, and we would be spared his crusade for as long as possible. I knew he would use strategy in order to get to you, so protecting you with the charm at the Dursleys would suffice; it would protect you and the rest of the world as well. The only thing that had to be given up was Lily’s freedom, and the chance of you knowing your sister, until the time was right. You must understand that I had every intention of reuniting the two of you, very soon in fact now that Voldemort’s existence is known to the world, however I never dreamed that it would happen quite like this.” Dumbledore finished his explanation and continued to stare at Harry, waiting for his reaction. Lily kept her eyes averted to the ground, as if ashamed by the story she had just heard, but would glance at Harry to see his reaction every few seconds. Everyone else’s eyes were glued on Harry. He took a few slow deep breathes; you could see him trying to understand everything that was just said as he sat there.
“So…you’re my sister?” he finally said after a few minutes, his eyes now fixed on Lily.
She smiled slightly. “Yea.” Lily raised her hand and moved her bangs aside to show a lightening shaped scar, exactly the same as Harry’s on her forehead. “We might be twins but as you can tell you got your looks from dad and I got mine from mum. We got the opposite eyes though, freaky isn’t it?”
Harry nodded once as he gave the girl another once over, trying desperately to sort through everything.
“And you’ve known about me this whole time?”
She paused for a moment. “Yea, and I hated it, every moment of it, I’ve been begging to tell you about me since I could talk. I mean I understood what was happening, even when I was really little, I just kind of got that there was something bigger going on, but every once in a while it would get the better of me. Especially once you were at school and when you were in trouble, I’ve always tried to help you out but they would never let me.”
“Well, I kind of got the better of them today, caught them by surprise, and…” she trailed off looking down at the floor again.
“And knocked us unconscious, I believe is the phrase you’re looking for.” Snape chimed in from behind Dumbledore, his words dripping with contempt as he glared at her in the same way he’d looked at Harry so many times before.
“Yea, well, I get a little overzealous sometimes. You should watch it though Snape or I might make you permanently unconscious.” Lily spat back, but she hung her head with one look from Dumbledore. The gang looked surprised at the way she spoke to Snape, they hated him as much as she did but they would never dare say anything like that, then again she lived with Dumbledore so there probably wasn’t much Snape could do about it.
“But wait.” Hermione finally spoke up. Lily perked up a little; she had been waiting for Hermione to catch on and knew that the time when she could do something had finally come. “I’m sorry Harry, but Professor Dumbledore, you said that two prophecies were made when Voldemort decided to attack Harry and his family, but you only mentioned the one about Lily. What’s the second prophecy?” Immediately Harry, Ron and Ginny all sat up straighter in their seats and looked expectantly at Dumbledore.
“Very good Miss Granger, you are indeed correct. However, I’m going to leave that explanation to Lily, I think she can demonstrate better than I can.” Dumbledore smiled serenely and sat back as a huge smile came across Lily’s face and she stood up from the desk.
“This is where things get interesting.” She said with a huge smile on her face.