Chapter 19 : The Bond of the New Marauders
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Snape walked out of his classroom and made his way towards the Headmaster’s office. He had to settle this once and for all. He couldn’t just let it slide... he couldn’t. He had to do something. If he didn’t, he was sure he would explode. The guilt... the shame... the blood... it was all he ever thought about ever since he killed her, but then again there was something to it. There was something inside of him that made him smile. There was an odd warmth that overcame him when he heard her neck snap.
“Ah, Severus, I was just on my way to see Minerva and I run into you! What a pleasant surprise!” Albus Dumbledore stood in front of Snape, a huge smile on his face.
“Professor Dumbledore, I was actually on my way to see you.” Snape said, his lips twisting in an awkward way.
“What do I owe this pleasure? Another young Gryffindor getting on your nerves?” Dumbledore was as cheery as ever.
“What I need to discuss with you is a serious matter. Can we talk about this somewhere more private?” Snape asked, looking cautiously around to make sure there were no stray, nosy students around.
“Go to my office and wait for me. I have some business to attend to with Minerva first.” Dumbledore’s face grew grim, as if he half expected what was going to be said.
“Ron! Hermione!” Harry yelled as the redheaded boy stepped out of the fireplace with his mother and a very shocked looking Hermione.
“I think I’m going to be sick...” Ron trailed off, his face slightly green.
“Hello, Harry dear.” Molly smiled at the child as he sat on the couch with a huge smile on his face.
“Hi... Mrs. Weasley.” Harry said politely.
“Oh Ron, it’s only going through the floo.” Molly brushed her youngest son’s hair. “Honestly! You would think you were dying by the way you’re carrying on. Or as if there was a gigantic spider next to you.”
“Mum, don’t joke about things like that!” Ron hissed, surveying the room looking for killer spiders.
“PADFOOT, RON’S HERE!” Harry turned his head and yelled for his godfather.
Sirius walked into the living room, brushing a strand of hair out of his face. As soon as Molly saw him, she walked towards him, leaving Ron, Hermione, and Harry to their own inventions. Sirius led Molly towards the kitchen where Remus was seated at the table drinking some tea.
“About time you got here.” Sirius told her as soon as they were out of earshot of the two young boys and the young girl.
“I have five children I need to look after and four of them would kill you in your sleep with some outrageous prank! I needed a babysitter.” Molly huffed as she sat down at the kitchen table.
“We know, Molly. Sirius just doesn’t have a lot of patience.” Remus explained, reaching over and patting Molly lightly on the arm.
“Of course, he doesn’t... murdered those muggles.” Molly muttered the last part under her breath.
“Excuse me, I thought we settled this. I didn’t kill anyone.” Sirius crossed his arms over his chest, a stern look on his face.
“Of course, you didn’t! You just went to Azkaban for nothing, because the Ministry thought it would be hilarious!” Molly exclaimed.
“Molly! Sirius! Please, stop. This is not why we are here.” Remus said half exasperated, half harassed.
“Why was I called here?” Molly asked, turning her attention towards Remus.
“Harry is very intent on spending time with Ron...so we thought this would be the perfect time for us to talk while Ron and Harry have some fun... and since your looking over Hermione again while the Grangers spend some time in the Wizarding World... it seemed like the ideal time.” Remus started, pausing for a second. “The next Order meeting isn’t for awhile and I think we need to tell you what exactly has been going on with Harry.”
“What happened?” Molly asked, her mind jumping to conclusions. “Is he okay?”
“Harry... he’s been having these dreams...” Remus started, unsure of how he should state this.
“What do you mean ‘dreams’?” Molly questioned, her eyes narrowing to Remus.
“Premonitions... things that are going to happen in the future.” Sirius said lazily.
“I know what they are, but what do they have to do with me?” Molly asked, fearing the worst.
“Not you, but Ron...” Sirius brushed a strand of hair out of his eye, “and Hermione.”
“What Sirius is trying to say is that Harry has these dreams with Ron and Hermione in which they are all friends at Hogwarts. Certain things seem to happen to them, and we-” Remus stopped mid-sentence after receiving a sarcastic look from Sirius, “I thought that you should be aware of the things that could possibly happen.”
“What happens in these dreams?”
“Harry has never told me personally about them, but he has told Sirius a great deal about them. It seems that Harry feels more comfortable with Sirius... which isn’t necessarily a bad thing. I got the condensed version of what happened.” Remus commented, glancing over at his friend.
“Well?” Molly turned her attention to the young wizard.
“Well what?” Sirius asked while tilting his head to the side.
“You know very well what. Don’t give me that look!” Molly lowered her voice as she narrowed her eyes.
“Ron’s fine in them. He doesn’t die or anything like that.”
Meanwhile in the living room, Harry, Hermione, and Ron sat down on the couch in silence. Hermione looked around the room with curiosity written all over her face. Ron looked slightly amused as the small house, a small smile on his face. Harry sat in between the two with a pensive look on his face.
“So... this is how wizarding families live?” Hermione asked, looking over at Harry.
“I guess so... I lived with my muggle aunt and uncle for a while... I just moved in with my godfather several months ago.” Harry’s face grew dark at the mention of his so-called ‘family’.
“My house is tilted... since my dad added so many additions to it. This isn’t crooked.” Ron stated.
“I live in a small, ranch style house. It suits us nicely.” Hermione commented.
“‘It suits us nicely’? You sound like a younger version of Percy. I mean... we’re six! Who would say something like that?” Ron asked.
“Who in the world is Percy?” Hermione asked looking slightly appalled.
“My older brother. He’ll be going to Hogwarts next year. He’s in love with the whole idea of studying.” Ron commented.
“But that’s why you go to school!” Hermione looked shocked.
“Who goes to Hogwarts to study?” Ron scrunched up his nose.
“Why it is a school... isn’t it?” Hermione sounded slightly unsure of herself.
“Yes, it’s a school.” Harry told her.
“Then why wouldn’t you go to study?”
“’Cause! There are so many other things to do there!” Ron exclaimed, as if it was the obvious answer.
“I see...” Hermione trailed off, looking over at Harry as he gave her a small smile.
Meanwhile in the kitchen, the three adults were having a very heated discussion. Somehow, they stopped talking about Harry’s dreams to the subject of Sirius’s parenting ability. Remus tried to play referee, but the two, bad-tempered people were very intent to have their little row.
“You don’t know anything! You think just because Harry doesn’t live with a mum and a dad that he isn’t well suited here! Well guess again! He’s happy here!” Sirius snapped.
“Please, let’s get-”
“I know exactly what children need! I have seven of them!” Molly spat back.
“His aunt and uncle abused him! Any time they needed to get a little angry out they would hit him!” Sirius shouted, white, hot anger building up inside of him. “I would never lay a hand on my godson! Now you tell me whom he’s better suited living with!”
“I’m not saying he should go back to his aunt and uncle! I’m saying that he needs a family!”
“He has one!” Sirius shot back, his temper getting the best of one.
“Oh yes... two men... one a convicted murderer and the other a werewolf.” Molly said bitterly.
“You leave Remus out of this! Just because he’s a werewolf doesn’t mean anything! You don’t even know us!” Sirius’s lips formed a small, white line.
“Please, let’s just stop fighting.” Remus said calmly, even though his face was paler then ever.
“I just don’t want the poor boy to get hurt. It looks as if he’s been through enough already.”
“You aren’t the one who decides that! You’re not his mother!” Sirius shouted.
“I’m as good as! I would take him in in a heartbeat!”
“You’re not responsible for him! I am!”
“Yes, well it’s kind of hard to look after him while you’re in Azkaban.” Molly said bitterly.
“Why you horrible-”
“Molly, you aren’t the only one who cares for Harry! We all do.” Remus interrupted Sirius, afraid of what he might say.
“Hello, Severus... now what did you want to talk to me about?” Dumbledore walked into his office, a dour look on his face.
“I want to talk about Arabella Figg.” Snape said sourly.
“Proceed.” Dumbledore walked over towards his desk and sat down, folding his hands upon his desk.
“I know who killed Figg.”
“I did- but you need to listen to me. I had to do it. The Dark Lord wanted me to prove myself to him to make sure I was on his side. He didn’t trust me. I don’t know if he still doesn’t or not. I did it for the Order.” Snape rushed so that he could say everything he wanted.
“Why didn’t you tell me earlier?” Dumbledore asked in a soft voice.
“I didn’t think you would believe me.” Snape said quickly.
“Help is always given to those at Hogwarts who ask for it.”
“Most people here aren’t trying to prove themselves that they aren’t going back to their old ways as a Death Eater.” Snape said bitterly.
“You’re one of my most trusted members of the Order, Severus... I take it as a personal insult when my own betray me. Don’t be on that list, Severus. Don’t become the next Peter Pettigrew.”
“You think that I liked it when I had to torture those people? You think that I liked killing parents as their children screamed in the background? Did you think it brought me some sadistic joy to my heart every single ruddy time I heard them screaming for their mummy and daddy? You think I enjoyed torturing defenseless, little kids who were crying after watching their parents being murdered? I’m not like them. I didn’t enjoy it. I still don’t. No matter how much I hate Harry Potter I would never hurt him. I don’t posses that kind of power.” Snape paused, his breathing ragged in deep breathes. “That night still haunts me. In my dreams, I keep hearing her neck snap. Everything I do is like a constant reminder of it.”
“I’m sorry that I can’t show you the sympathy you want... Arabella Figg is dead and you murdered her.” Dumbledore said stiffly.
“I have to prove myself to everyone! To you, to the Dark Lord... to the Order! And Black... Black gets welcomed back with open arms as if he never did a bloody thing! He’s the one you trust most out of everyone in the Order and yet he’s a murdering bastard! He proved that he could be a killer when he was a teenager! He nearly killed me that one night and you don’t care! Make Black prove himself for once!” Snape yelled, losing what little patience and tranquility he had.
“Sirius suffered enough for all he has done. As a child, he was abused, because he didn’t share the same views as his parents. As an adult, he was sentence to live in Azkaban for five years. Tell me, Severus, what have you done to repay your wrongs?” Dumbledore got up, his eyes glaring with fury.
“OUT!” Dumbledore shouted, losing his composure. “I want you out of this office.”
The three newfound friends had moved from their spot on the living room couch. They were now up in Harry’s room. Ron sat on his bed while flipping through ‘Quidditch Through the Ages’ as Harry sat next to him. Hermione was staring at the moving pictures of Harry, Sirius, and Remus that were scattered around the room and the moving posters of wizards playing Quidditch.
“This is amazing!” Hermione exclaimed excitingly as she touched a picture of a smiling Sirius with a baby Harry in his arms.
“I wonder if my mum will buy me a Quidditch book.” Ron said thoughtfully.
“How do the pictures move?” Hermione asked with her face alit.
“Padfoot said it was some kind of special film... it’s developed differently or something.” Harry replied.
“Now what is Quirditch?” Hermione asked as her gaze landed upon a poster.
“Quidditch!” Ron corrected her.
“Quidditch! Quirditch! It’s all the same!” Hermione cried out.
“Okay... Harry, tell Hermione how to play Quirditch, because I’ve never heard of it.”
“Oh, honestly! I haven’t been in the Wizarding World for all that long. You’ve been living in this world your whole life! I have to learn everything!” Hermione sounded upset, her voice braking.
“Harry hasn’t been in the Wizarding World all that long and he knows loads of stuff!”
“He lives with two wizards!” Hermione exclaimed, looking at Ron as if she’s never seen anything like him.
“Can we please not fight?” Harry asked in a small voice, a shiver running up his spine.
“I can’t wait to fly on a broom.” Hermione said dreamily. “Although, it looks like it would be a little frightening.”
“Padfoot taught me how to fly... I’m sure he’ll teach you.” Harry suggested as Ron’s mouth hung open.
“You mean he taught you how to fly? You’ve been on a broom?” Ron asked in disbelief.
“Yeah... Padfoot taught me how to ride and then he taught me how to play Quidditch... why?” Harry asked, cocking his head to one side.
“My mum won’t let me anywhere near a broom. She says I’m too young and that I’ll fall off.”
“Padfoot rode next to me at first with his hand behind my back... now he lets me off on my own, but he’s still pretty close all the time.”
“I wish my mum was like your godfather... she won’t even let Fred and George ride on a broom! She won’t let any of us until we’re eleven and at Hogwarts.” Ron said miserably.
“Maybe you can stay over sometime and Padfoot can teach you.” Harry suggested, not being able to help himself.
“And go against your mother’s wishes?” Hermione’s head snapped around to look at Ron and Harry.
“What she doesn’t know can’t hurt her.” Ron said, rolling his eyes.
“Hermione’s right... it’s not right...” Harry suddenly felt a huge whish of guilt going over him.
There was a soft knock at the door and Molly Weasley popped her head in with a hassled look on her face. She smiled sweetly at the three friends and beckoned Ron over towards her. He groaned loudly and dragged himself off of the bed, running a hand through his flaring, red hair.
“Do I have to?” Ron asked whining.
“Yes, come on. Goodbye, Harry. Come along, Hermione, Dear.” Molly opened the door fully and reached out a hand.
“Bye, Harry.” Hermione smiled, walking over towards Molly.
“Bye, Harry... unless... can I say at Harry’s for the night?” Ron asked, a small smile appearing on his face.
“No.” Molly said briefly, casting a sad look over at Harry.
“Bye, Ron. Bye, Hermione. Goodbye, Mrs. Weasley.” Harry forced a weak smile.
“Bye.” Ron said miserably as he dragged his feet all the way down the stairs, complaining about leaving so soon.
Within seconds of the three leaving, Sirius appeared in the doorway. He looked frustrated and very angry. Harry looked up at his godfather, and for the very first time since he met him felt a little scared. He sat there stiffly on the bed, waiting for Sirius to make the first move. Sirius soon made his way over towards the bed and sat down next to his godson, sighing loudly. Harry relaxed slightly.
“That woman makes me so mad...” Sirius trailed off, wrapping an arm around Harry.
“What happened?” Harry looked up, resting his head on Sirius’s shoulder.
“She says I’m not a good godfather... says that you shouldn’t be living here... she says a lot of things.”
“That’s not true!” Harry protested. “You’re the best godfather there is! I love living here!”
“That’s what I told her, that you were happy here. She says that this isn’t what you need. It’s just... you know... never mind.” Sirius shook his head.
“What?” Harry asked.
“Let’s get some dinner, okay?” Sirius urged him off of the subject.
“Sure...” Harry smiled weakly.
“He bought it, My Lord.”
Severus Snape stood in a small circle with Lord Voldemort. They didn’t have their white masks on, because these people consisted of the Dark Lord’s inner circle. Rodolphus Lestrange stood to Snape’s right. Next to him, was his wife, Bellatrix and to her right was Rabastan Lestrange. To Snape’s left was Lucius Malfoy. Next to him, was his wife Narcissa and next to her was Walden Macnair.
“Good.” Voldemort said in a far away, misty voice. “You did well, Severus.”
“My Lord, do you have any plans for Baby Potter yet?” Bellatrix asked, her lip curling up into a thin grin.
“I need the prophecy before I can do anything. I need to know how to kill the nuisance before I get him.” Voldemort paused for a second before continuing. “No doubt Black hasn’t already corrupted him in thinking about being on his side.”
“My cousin was always a nasty boy who couldn’t hold his own tongue.” Narcissa snarled.
“We’re done here.” Voldemort announced abruptly.
“Done? So soon?” Lucius asked.
“Isn’t that what I just said? Crucio!” Voldemort pointed his wand at him, as he withered in pain. “We’re done.”
The curse was lifted and he turned to face everybody else, asking if they had a problem with ending the meeting now. They all shook their heads for mumbled their no’s. Voldemort then left the room, his robes billowing behind him as he walked. Narcissa knelt down to her husband and helped him up.
“You shouldn’t say anything ill of the Dark Lord, Lucius... I thought you would know better.” Rabastan glared at the older man before leaving.
“I can’t wait to see the look on Dumbledore’s face when he knows that the double crosser double crossed.” Macnair sneered at Snape.
“In all due time.” was all Snape said before he too left.
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