I am lying in bed when I hear the owl peck on the window. It's odd, given it is nearly two in the morning. I’m staying with Sirius in his old house. He hated this place, but for now it is our only choice. I open the window to let the owl in. It sticks out its leg, waiting for me to remove the letter. Then it hops onto the stand by my bed. I sit on the bed and read the letter.
Remus and Sirius,
I hope this finds you well. Only an hour ago, Harry came out of the maze with the Triwizard Cup. However, he was holding the body of a dead schoolmate, Cedric Diggory. The cup was a portkey placed by Barty Crouch Jr. to teleport Harry to a graveyard where Voldemort was waiting for him. He is back, risen from ‘the dead’ – for lack of better word. Harry fought bravely and is currently fine, if not shaken. It seems the time has come. We need to bring the Order back. I’m inviting you both to rejoin. I am truly sorry I cannot tell you this in person, but I’ve had urgent business to attend to. Harry is fine and still at Hogwarts. There is nothing you can do for now. I am sorry for the lateness of the hour, but I thought you would like to know immediately.
P.S. –Don’t do anything rash.
Voldemort is back! Harry has escaped him again. “Padfoot,” I call, loudly. I run out into the hall, looking for him. Finally I made it to the door with his name on the plaque. “Padfoot,” I yell, pounding on the door.
“What do you want?” he grumbles, slowly opening the door.
“This letter came, just now.” I say, handing him the letter. I watch as he reads it through, then again.
“He can’t be serious. He’s back,” he says, his voice slightly shaky, “and Harry has escaped him again.”
“Dumbledore is bringing back the Order. I’m going to join again.” I state, seeing if he would too.
“Yes, that would probably be the best thing to do.” He glances at the letter again. “And what does he mean, ‘Don’t do anything rash’? Does he expect us to leave and look for Voldemort?”
“I believe so,” I smile. I am certain Sirius is fighting back the impulse to go to Harry right this instant. He looks me in the eye.
“I can’t leave him alone,” He’s out the front door before I can even try to stop him.
I walk back to my room. We will have to recruit more, that is obvious as most of the Order from last time are dead. I then crawl into bed, finally tired.
The next day is hectic. Dumbledore briefs us about what we need. The most important thing for now was where the meetings are going to happen.
“You could always use this place,” Sirius offers. “It already has protections placed on it.”
“Yes, this is perfect.” Dumbledore smiles, “Thank you, Sirius.”
So the enchantments begin. The final protection placed on the house is the Fidelius charm, with Dumbledore as the secret keeper. The meetings begin. The Weasley’s are in this time, along with Sirius, Kingsley Shacklebolt (recruited by Dumbledore), and more members from last time. Soon, it is time for our first meeting. We all meet in the kitchen, which Molly, Sirius, and I had just finished cleaning that morning. Sitting around the scrubbed table, Dumbledore begins the meeting.
He looks around at all of us. “You know why we are here. We are fighting Voldemort,” a few people flinch, “and we are going to need help. The Ministry has already devised a way to gain entrance into Hogwarts and the proceedings there. A bill has recently been passed so that, if I fail to find a Defence against the Dark Arts teacher, they will appoint someone to do the job.” Kingsley and Arthur nod. “Right now, there are few of us. We need to recruit. Arthur, Kingsley, I need you to see if there are any supportive of our cause at the Ministry.” He began to tell everyone what to look for, and to be cautious when asking.
“One last thing, before we adjourn. I have reason to believe that Harry Potter could be in danger. We need to have a guard around him at all times.” As people began to volunteer, Sirius stood up.
“So, how much do I get to guard him?” Sirius asks.
“You don’t get to at all Sirius.” Sirius opens his mouth to argue, but Dumbledore stops him. “He will be fine, and we will move him here before long. If he sees anyone he knows, even you while you are supposed to be in hiding, he will know.”
“So I can’t guard him either?” I ask.
“No, Remus.” I just nod.
“That is everything, I believe.” Dumbledore says, rising from his chair. “Let’s meet again in three days to see how the recruiting is coming along.” With that, he leaves. Molly invites everyone to stay for dinner, but only Kingsley and Moody accept.
As Molly begins to cook, the five of us sit down to talk. “Do you think you will be able to recruit any one?” I ask.
“I’m not sure,” Arthur replies, looking deep in thought.
“I know a few people who would be interested,” Moody says, and I wonder what kind of ‘people’ they are. “I don’t know which, if any, Aurors would be interested,” says Kingsley.
“Tonks. I trained her, and she will be interested,” supplies Moody.
They leave after dinner, and Molly begins attacking the house again. Sirius, Arthur and I help her, and by nightfall, we have cleaned one of the rooms. Molly and Arthur stay the night, but are going home the next day as they have to pick up their children from the Hogwarts Express. This left a couple of very boring days for Sirius and me. We played chess and Exploding Snap, and even did some cleaning, but are relieved when it was time again for the next Order meeting.
Molly and Arthur were the first to arrive, bringing the four children that are still at home with them. “Remus,” Molly says, stepping forward to greet me. “It’s so nice to see you again.” Then she turns and sees Sirius. Ron is already talking to him, which didn’t look like it pleased her. When Sirius turns, however, the expression vanishes.
“Molly!” he says, smiling. He walks forward, almost as if he is going to hug her.
“Sirius,” she says, offering a small smile. Then there is a knock on the door. Sirius walks forward to open it. Kingsley is there, along with a young woman with shocking blue hair.
“Kingsley,” says the young woman, alarmed, “it’s Sirius Black!” She has barely taken a step forward, however, when Kingsley speaks.
“I know.” She has a very confused look on her face, and watches Sirius warily. I see her eyes widen in shock when Kingsley shakes Sirius’ hand. I laugh, and Kingsley notices. “I suppose I owe you an explanation. Sirius,” he indicates, putting his hand on Sirius’ shoulder, “is innocent.”
“But you’re in charge of looking for him,” she nearly screams.
“Yeah, but it’s not like he wants to kill Harry,” interrupts Ron. “After all the time we spent with him last year, he had loads of opportunities.” Molly looks alarmed when Ron said that. “I mean, he is his godfather.”
“I’ve known where he is for a while now,” Kingsley said. “When I was put in charge of looking for him, Dumbledore came and talked to me. He explained that he was innocent, and gave me proof.”
“What kind of proof?” she asks her auror training showing.
“Memories,” is all he says, but that seems to be good enough for her.
“So, cousin, how about a hug?” Sirius asks. She just looks at him.
“Cousin?” I asked, suddenly feeling out of the loop.
“She’s Andromeda daughter,” he says, and I nod my understanding. Andromeda had been another ‘white’ sheep in the Black family, and the only one of his relatives he got along with.
Now more people were knocking on the door, so we all moved into the kitchen. As we sat around the table, I found myself sitting next to Sirius’ cousin. “So,” I asked, as more people came in through the kitchen door, “What’s your name?”
“Tonks,” she said, smiling at me. “What’s yours?”
“Remus Lupin.” I reply.
“It’s nice to meet you, Remus,” she says.
“So, you’re an auror?” I ask, looking again at her blue hair.
“Yeah,” she says, turning back to look at me, and noticing my eyes on her hair. “It doesn’t look good, does it? I think I like pink best, but I thought I would try something else, for variety, you know.” Then she screwed her face up, in a look of concentration. The next instant, her hair had turned pink!
“Sorry,” she said, seeing my shocked expression, “I should have warned you. I’m a—”
“Metamorphmagus, yeah. I can see that.” Now it was her turn to look surprised. Obviously, she wasn’t used to people knowing.
“So, what do you do, Mr. Lupin?” she asks.
“I’m currently unemployed,” I say, and can feel a flush coming up my neck, “and Remus is fine.”
“So, do you know Sirius?” she asks. “I mean, other than from these meetings?” She was trying to sound nonchalant, but I could tell she was really interested.
“Yeah, we’ve been best friends since we were in Hogwarts together.” I say, and see a spark of understanding in her eyes that unsettles me. Then Sirius walks into the room, which was much fuller than it had been during the last meeting, and squeezes between me and a rather small wizard.
“I see you two are getting along,” he smiles. Then Dumbledore stands and begins the meeting.
A/N: Big round of applause to my beta WolfieAli(: Thanks so much(: