Chapter 11 : Chapters 23, 24, & 25
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The next morning was Sunday. As usual I was one of the first up. When I went into the nursery to get my son I found Remus sitting in the rocking chair with Justice. “I didn’t expect anyone else to be up.”
“Justice woke me up about twenty minutes ago. I’ve already changed and fed him. I’ll just be going now that you’re up.”
“Remus please. Can we talk? I know you’re upset about the other night.”
“Isabella I’m fine I promise. I always knew some day you would fall in love with someone or would realize that you still loved Sirius. I guess part of me hoped that you would fall in love with me, but I’ve known for a long time that we’re just not meant to be.”
“Oh Remus. I’m so sorry. I do love you, just…”
“Not in that way I know. I’ve talked it over with the guys. Sirius is going to move back in here and I’m going to move in with Peter at least for the time being. I’ve written to Dumbledore to see if the Order has any work that they need help with. I love you Isabella and I probably always will. I just want you to be happy.”
“It’s for the best Isa. Justice deserves to have two parents that love him and you deserve happiness. I’m going to start packing.” Remus said as he handed me Justice. “I hope you and Sirius will be very happy together.” He said as he kissed me on the cheek then hurried out of the room.
“Oh Justice, what are we going to do? If I chose your father then I hurt your godfather. But if I chose your godfather then I hurt your father. Come on lets go see if your aunt and uncle are up yet. They’ll know what to do.”
With that I walked up to the main house to find the others not only up but already cooking breakfast. “Morning Isa.” Lily called out.
“Morning everyone. Please tell me there’s tea.”
“Coming right up. Here you go. I’ll take Justice while you eat.”
“Thanks Sirius.” I said as tears came to my eyes.
“Clear out you lot. Give me and Isa a few minute alone.” Lily waited until the boys had all left the kitchen before turning on me. “Ok Isabella what’s the matter?”
“Lily I’ve screwed everything up. Remus is miserable. He’s moving out and he’s written Dumbledore asking for an assignment. He’s leaving us all. Sirius is happy, but at what cost. I get back Justice’s father only to lose his Godfather.” I asked finally letting out the tears I had been holding back since Remus had told me he was moving out.
“I don’t know Sweetheart. I’m going to send the boys down to the Burrow and have them send Molly up. The three of us will figure it out together. You just stay here for a minute, drink your tea. I won’t be gone long.”
“Alright Lily.” I sighed as she hurried out of the room.
Instead of drinking my tea I laid my head on my arms and cried. That’s how Lily and Molly found me a few minutes later, softly crying my broken heart out. “It’ll be ok Isabella.” Molly said as she wrapped her arms around me. “I’ll tell you what we’re going to do. Lily you pick up that phone and call your mother and Isa’s mother. We’ll have them down and the five us will figure this whole thing out. I promise you.”
Molly busied herself making tea while Lily called our mothers, both of whom agreed to come right over. “I’ll be back in just a few. I’m going to floo over and pick up our mothers.” Lily called from the living room.
Molly and I didn’t say a word while we waited for Lily to get back. She just held me hand and kept me company which is all I really needed. “Darling.”
“Oh Mama.” I cried as I threw myself into her arms.
“It’s alright now darling. Lily told us what’s going on. Why don’t we move into the living room and we’ll talk in there.” Once we were all settled my mother turned to me and said, “Now then the way I understand it you’ve fallen back in love with Sirius, which has Remus all bent out of shape. Am I right?”
“And because Remus is all bent out of shape. He’s moving out and he’s gone and written to Dumbledore for some assignment or another. Correct?” She said looking at Lily.
“Yes Mama Jones.”
“Alright. Well Samantha it sounds like the girls haven’t quite figured out how to make a man do as he should. It also seems like we’ve been neglecting our duties as mothers by not teaching them how to do so. Now girls you listen to us and we’ll teach you how to make a man do as he should.”
The rest of the morning was spent with our mothers teaching us how to make our men do as we please. “Now Isa what is it you want?” My mother asked.
“I want Sirius back and Remus to move back home. I want things to go back as they should be.”
“Well that’s easy enough. Lily what rooms are available.”
“Remus could move back into the main house and Sirius and Isabella can take over the guest house. There’s even room for Peter if he wants to move back in, but I’d hate to take him from his mother when she still needs…”
Lily was interrupted by a tapping at the window. “I’ll get it. It’s Mary’s owl. I wonder what she could need. It’s addressed to you and James, Lily.”
“Well hand it over.” She said. She immediately opened it and began to read the letter. “Oh, oh no!”
“Lily what is it? What’s happened?”
“It’s James’s father. He’s dead. I have to go at once.”
“You’ll do no such thing. Sit down now Lily.” Mama Evans said.
“Molly go down to the burrow get James and Sirius. Lily sit down let me see the letter. Mama will you go make some tea.” As I read the letter I became more and more concerned. “Lily it’ll be all right. We’re all here for you and James.” I said taking her hand.
Just then James came rushing out of the fire. “Lily what is it? What’s happened? What’s wrong?”
“Oh James.” Lily cried just as Sirius came out of the fire place.
“Isabella what’s going on? What’s happened?” Sirius said rushing to my side.
“James, Sirius I’m sorry. We just received this letter from your mother. It’s your father. He’s dead.”
“No! No it can’t be.”
“James I’m so sorry. It’s true. Here read it.” I said as I handed him the letter.
“But this isn’t my mother’s hand writing.”
“No, but it was your mother’s owl that delivered it.”
“I have to go. I have to see her at once.” James said staggering to his feet.
“We’ll come with you James. Molly will you let Remus and Peter know where we’ve gone? And can you look after Justice?” I asked.
“Of course. Don’t worry about it. Go with your men take care of them.”
“We’ll come with you Molly.” My mum said, “We’ll take care of the children don’t worry dear. You two just take care of James and Sirius. Isabella if you need anything just let us know we’ll come right away.”
“Lily, I’m coming with you. No arguments now I’m coming with.” Mama Evans said.
“Lily lets go.” James said fighting back tears.
“Alright we’re leaving. James you first I’ll be right behind you. Isa can you?”
“Don’t worry Lily I’ll get your mum. Go now. Sirius you next. We’re right behind you. Molly don’t forget my mum can’t floo by herself.”
“I’ll take care of her. Don’t worry. Let us know what’s going on as soon as you can. We’ll bring everyone up here just call as soon as possible.”
“We will. Come on Mama Evans. Oh mum maybe you should call Dad and Papa Evans and let them know what’s going on.”
“Will do sweetheart. Now go.”
“Hold tight to me Mama Evans.” I said as we stepped into the fire place. “Potter House. Sorry I should have warned you to hold your breath or you’ll breathe in some soot.”
“I’m alright. Oh my goodness.” She said as she took in the shambles that was the living room.
“Oh no, oh no. I’ll be right back.” I said as I ran out the front door. “Oh Merlin help us. No. No this can’t be happening, not here. This can’t be happening to us. He’s a pureblood. It’s not supposed to be a pureblood.” I cried to myself as I made my way back inside. It only took one look at my face for Lily to know that our deepest fear had come true.
“We’ll have to tell them won’t we? Isabella I don’t think I can manage it. I can’t be the one to tell them that their father was murdered.”
“You won’t have to. I’ll tell them. Where’s your mum?”
“She’s in the kitchen with Mary. The shock has nearly done her in.”
“You go to the kitchen and sit with your mother and Mary. Don’t say anything to her yet. I’ll go find the boys. We have to notify the Ministry. Where’s the neighbor the one that wrote to us?”
“She’s with Mum and Mary.”
“It’s ok Lily. We’ll get the through this just like we have everything else.” I said as I pulled my best friend to me and hugged her. “Now go on. I’ll find the boys and we’ll meet you in the kitchen.”
I took a second to compose myself before I went off to find James and Sirius. I came upon them in the study with David’s body. “James, Sirius come into the kitchen for a minute will you?”
“I can’t Isa. I can’t leave him.”
“James please come to the kitchen. I’ll call the others and have Peter and Remus come up. They’ll sit with him.”
“I can’t leave him alone Isabella. I just can’t.”
“Alright James, Ok. Sirius stay with him will you? I’ll go call Peter and Remus right now.” I said as I hurried out of the room.
“Mary I need to use your phone.” I said even though I was fairly sure she didn’t hear me. “Peter it’s Isabella. I need you and Remus to come over right away. No don’t bring anyone. Just come.” I said as I hung up.
I looked around the kitchen and couldn’t stand all the sadness. It broke my heart. ‘I can’t believe this is all happening.’ I thought as I walked into the living room. Just then Peter and Remus came out of the fire. “Oh Peter, Remus.” I cried as I threw myself into Remus’s arms.
“Isabella what is it?” Remus asked worried.
“I need you guys to come sit with James’s father, please. He can’t leave him alone, but I need to talk with them. Remus when I’m done talking to them we’ll need to notify Dumbledore and the Ministry that David was murdered. Would you mind coming with me? I can’t face it alone.”
“Murder Isa you didn’t say.” Remus replied.
“Shh. The other’s don’t know yet. The Dark Mark it’s been set over the house. We haven’t told them. Lily and I are going to once we get James and Sirius in the kitchen. It’s going to be hard enough telling them once I don’t think I can handle having to give the news twice.”
We were silent as we walked into the study. “James it’s alright mate. Peter and I will sit with him. You and Sirius go with Isabella. Go see your wife. Go on your mother needs you. We won’t leave him alone I promise.” Remus said as he put his arm around his friend.
“Promise me Remus. Promise you won’t leave him alone.” James said with a hint of desperation in his voice.
“I promise mate. We won’t leave him alone. That’s the way. Go on with Sirius and Isabella.”
“Come on James. I think someone’s made tea. It’ll be alright let’s go into the kitchen.” I said taking his arm and steering him from the room. “Sirius?”
“I’m right behind you.” Sirius replied with deep sorrow in his voice.
I hate knowing that I’m about to add to their pain. As we walked into the kitchen Lily rose from her chair and came over to us. Taking James’s arm she said to me, “I’ve got him. Thanks Isabella.”
I waited until Lily had James situated and Sirius had settled into a chair his head falling into his hands. “James I’ve asked Remus to come with me to see Dumbledore and the Ministry.”
“What? Why? Why does anyone have to go to the Ministry?”
“James I’m so sorry to be the one to tell you this. But your father was murdered.” At this Mary let out a sob. “I’m sorry Mary, but there’s more. The Dark Mark was set above the house. It was Death Eaters. Mary I think it would be best if you moved in with us. If the Death Eaters have been here then there’s no guarantee they won’t come back.”
“Oh Merlin,” Mary sobbed. “This can’t be happening. This isn’t supposed to happen to us.”
“Mary I’m so sorry. Why don’t you come stay with me and Jacob? You can stay as long as you’d like. From what I understand the Manor is rather full these days. I think you would be much more comfortable with us. What do you say?”
“I uh I guess so. What do you think James?”
“I think it’s a good idea. Thank you Mama Evans.”
“Of course James. Come on Mary. Let’s go pack up some of your things. The children can come back later and pack up anything else you’ll need or want. I’m sorry I didn’t catch your name.” Mama Evans said as she turned to the neighbor.
“Susan. Susan Peters.”
“Susan would you mind helping us?”
“Not at all.”
“I’m going to go to back to the study. I imagine it won’t be long until the Ministry is here.” James said as he left the room.
“Sirius will you stay with Lily while I go get Remus?” I asked afraid to leave my best friend alone.
“It’s alright Isa. I’ll come with you. I don’t want to leave James.”
“Ok.” I sighed as I wrapped my around her. “I’m so sorry Lily. I’m sorry that all of this is happening.”
“It helps to have you all here. To know that we have family and friends that we can turn to.”
“We’ll always be here.” Sirius said as he did something he rarely does, he hugged Lily.
“Sirius I’m so sorry I didn’t even think about how hard all of this must be on you. After all he treated you like a son. He took you in when you had nowhere else to go.”
“Thanks Lil. I loved him as I never loved my own parents. It breaks my heart to see James like this. I wish there was more I could do for him.”
“We just have to be there for him. We’ll be there for each other.” I said as I wrapped my arms around them both. “Come on lets go. Remus and I need to notify Dumbledore and the Ministry. I’m going to leave Peter here with you guys. If you need anything just let him know.” I said as we reached the study. “Remus are you ready? Pete would you mind staying with these guys. Lily’s mum is with Mary helping her pack some clothes and other essentials.”
“I’ve got it Isabella. I’ll take care of them I promise.” Peter said as he came over to hug me.
“Alright.” I said returning the hug. “We’ll be back as soon as we can be. If you need anything Molly and Arthur are at the manor so just call them. I know my mother is there and I think mine and Lily’s fathers are there as well. We’ll be back soon.”
“Where to first Isa?”
“The Ministry I guess.”
“Alright hold tight. I’ve got you Isa I won’t let anything happen to you I promise.” Remus whispered as he held me close. I felt the familiar tightening as we spun into nothingness and the familiar release as moments later we landed just outside the visitors’ entrance to the Ministry. “Do you remember the number?”
“Yeah it’s 62442.”
“Right” Remus said as he rang it in.
“Welcome to the Ministry of Magic. Please state your name and business.” (Page 126 Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix)
“Remus Lupin and Isabella Jones. Here to notify the aurors of the death of David Potter by Death Eaters.”
Two badges spit out with our names and destinations printed on them. Remus handed me mine. As we pined them to our shirts the emotionless voice stated, “Visitors to the Ministry, you are required to submit to a search and present your wand for registration at the security desk, which is located at the far end of the Atrium.” As the voice spoke the telephone box slid down into the atrium. “The Ministry of Magic wishes you a pleasant day.”
As Remus and I left the box I thought to myself ‘There’s nothing pleasant about today. This has to be the worst day of my life.’ After presenting our wands and being allowed access to the Ministry at large we took the lifts down to the Aurors floor. We stopped at the first desk we came to and asked who we need to speak to report a murder by death eater. “You’ll need to speak to Kingsley Shacklebolt.” Replied the bored looking secretary.
“Thank you,” Remus replied sounding exhausted. I hadn’t realized how much of a toll this day was taking on him.
We walked until we found the door marked Kingsley Shacklebolt. “This must be the place.” I said as I knocked.
“Enter,” a deep voice commanded.
“I’m sorry to bother you, but are you Kingsley Shacklebolt?” I enquired exhausted by the thought of having to tell another person that a man I had respected so much was dead.
“I am what can I do for you today? Ms?” He replied looking up from his paperwork.
“Jones. Isabella Jones and this is…”
“Remus Lupin. Yes, Dumbledore has told me about you lot. He mentioned that you would be joining the Order before too much longer. How can I help you Ms. Jones?”
“Please call me Isabella. We were told that you were the person we needed to speak to. This afternoon we received a letter from Marry and David Potter’s neighbor informing us that Mr. Potter was dead. Lily and James Potter are our roommates you see.”
“Yes, please continue.”
“Well when we got there I found the Dark Mark had been set above the house. Upon closer inspection I discovered that Mr. Potter hadn’t died of natural causes. I’m afraid he was tortured some before he was murdered. We thought the best course of action would be to notify the Ministry and Professor Dumbledore as soon as we could.”
“Has anyone touched Mr. Potter’s body?” Kingsley asked suddenly looking exhausted.
“Not that I know. Remus?”
“Not that I’m aware of. Is there anything else we should be doing Kingsley?”
“No, you are doing exactly the right thing. Have you been to see Dumbledore yet?”
“No we’re on our way there next. We thought we should notify the Ministry first.” I replied.
“You’re very brave Isabella. Both of you are,” Kingsley said as he took three butter beers from the cooler next to his desk. “I know we’re at the Ministry, but I think given the circumstances it’s ok. I’ll dispatch a team right away to collect his body so it can be examined then prepared for burial. Is there anyone at the house?”
“Yes,” I said on a sigh. “Lily and James are. Peter Pettigrew and Sirius Black are with them. When we left Mary was there still as well as Lily’s mother and the next door neighbor.”
“Yes Susan Peters. She’s a witch as well.”
“We figured as much.” I said taking a drink of my butter beer. “Kingsley how many does that make this week?”
“Far too many my dear. Far too many. If you’d like I can notify Dumbledore for you.”
“No,” Remus said shaking his head. “We need to do it. Thank you though.”
“Of course. Good luck to both of you. If you let me know when the funeral is I’ll pass along word to other members of the Order that way those that were close with him can come, if they wish.”
“Thank you Kingsley we’ll let you know. I’m sure we’ll see each other again.” I said as Remus and I rose to leave.
“Good-bye Isabella, Remus. Please tell Mary and James that they’re in my heart.”
“We’ll let them know.” Remus returned as he shook Kingsley’s hand. “Come on Isa let’s go. We still need to go see Dumbledore.”
I didn’t have to open my eyes to know we had landed just outside the gates of Hogwarts. I could smell it in the air. The Magic, the fresh scent of pine, but mostly it was the Magic I could smell. No one else had ever understood what I meant when I said I could smell the magic in the air. No one except Remus that is. “Remus I can smell it. Can’t you? The Magic it’s so strong here. It always brings me peace to be here to smell the Magic in the air.”
“I know what you mean. It makes all the horrors of the last few hours just melt away. All the stress of the last months. It’s just gone.”
“Yeah it is. Someone should be along any minute to get us I imagine. I hope it’s Minerva. I’ve missed her so.”
“You and me both. Look here they came now.”
“Remus, Isabella what are you doing here? Is everything ok?” Minerva McGonagall asked as she hurried down the path.
“No, Minerva it’s not.” I said fighting tears. “We’ll explain everything inside. We need to see Professor Dumbledore. Please it’s been such a long a day.”
“Alright come along you two. How’s Justice doing Isabella? Everyone loved the pictures you sent.”
“He’s doing great. I have new pictures. I’ll be happy to show you. I think I have pictures of Molly and Arthur’s boys as well.”
“Percy’s quite taken with her Professor. It’s adorable. I swear whenever he’s around her he only has eyes for her. He’s absolutely smitten with her.” Remus said on a laugh.
Hearing his laugh made me smile and lightened my heart. It had been such an awful day and to know there was still a reason for laughter made all of the crap we had been going through easier to handle. Before I knew it we were in front the gargoyle that guarded the entrance to the headmaster’s office. “Chocolate Frogs,” Minerva said causing the gargoyle to start rotating.
We got on the moving stairs and rode them up to Dumbledore’s office. At the top Minerva knocked. It was only a second before we heard “Enter.”
The three of us walked into Dumbledore’s office to find him standing behind his desk. “Remus, Isabella what are you doing here? Is everything alright with the others?”
“We’re fine Professor, but not everything is ok. Earlier today Lily received a letter from the Potter’s neighbor Susan Peters. Stating that there had been an accident and that David was dead.”
“Oh my.” Minerva gasped.
“Minerva please let us wait to hear everything Miss Jones has to tell us. Please continue,” Dumbledore said on a nod.
“Well Sirius, James, Lily, Lily’s mother, and I raced right over. When we got there I found the living room in shambles. Sirius and James went to find James’s father while Lily and her mother went to sit with Mary and Susan. I had to know so I went outside and found the Dark Mark had been set over the house. We had gone by floo powder which is how we hadn’t seen it earlier. Mary is going to stay with the Evans for a little while until we can decide on something more permanent. We left Peter at the house with James, Sirius, and Lily. Lily’s mother and Susan were helping Mary pack a few things. Remus and I have already been to the Ministry. We reported David’s murder to Kingsley Shacklebolt.” I finished on a sob.
“As you can see it’s been an exhausting day.” Remus said he pulled me into a hug. “We haven’t had much time to process everything that’s been going on. We thought we should let you know what had happened considering the work the Potters did for the Order.”
“Thank you both for telling me.” Dumbledore said with a kindly smile. “I can only imagine how stressful this must be for you all. How are James and Sirius doing?”
“When we left James appeared to be in a mild state of shock. While Sirius is absolutely broken up over this.” Remus answered. “He seemed to be holding it together, but you could tell that his restraint is only paper thin.”
“Minerva how many classes do you have tomorrow?” Dumbledore asked not taking his kind eyes from us.
“Two, first years and seventh years. The first years are Slytherins and Gryffindors.”
“Alright I’ll get one of the other teachers to cover your first year class. If you’ll come up with an assignment that they can work on to keep them busy I would appreciate it. I’ll cover your seventh year students personally. If you’ll leave me notes as to what their working on. I want you to go down and pack a bag. You’re going to stay with our former students tonight.”
“Honestly Professor that’s not necessary.” I stammered.
“I know it’s not, but I want someone there with you all just in case you need someone to talk to. You children are very special to us. We would never abandon you. You’re welcome to stay here while Minerva goes to pack her bag.” Dumbledore offered.
“Thank you Professor that’s very kind of you.” Remus responded.
“Can I get you anything? Tea perhaps?”
“Thank you Professor I would really appreciate some mint tea. Remus prefers pumpkin juice or hot chocolate to tea.”
“Of course. Winky,” Dumbledore called.
“Yes Professor how can Winky be of service to you?” The small house elf asked bowing deeply.
“Could you bring us two cups of mint tea and a mug of Hot Chocolate please?”
“Yes Professor right away.” Winky said bowing again. She was back in a matter of minutes with a tray. “Here you are Professor.”
“Thank you, Winky. That will be all.” He said dismissing the house elf. “How are the children doing Isabella?”
“They’re doing wonderfully, Professor. I have pictures if you would like to see.” I said reaching for my purse.
“I would love that. After all they will be attending Hogwarts some day.” He said reaching for the pictures I held out. “They’ve gotten so big. Are these Molly and Arthur’s twins?”
“Yes, Fred and George. Their either going to be brilliant or absolute terrors. They're a true joy when they’re not crying.” I said on a laugh.
“This is a wonderful picture of you and Percy, I believe.”
“Ah yes that would be Percy.” Remus replied not even having to look at the picture. “He’s Isabella’s biggest admirer. He follows her everywhere and would do absolutely anything for her. You should see the way he follows her around Professor. It doesn’t help that she indulges him so.”
“He’s only a child Remus. Besides it’s fun to indulge him and he makes it so easy. He’s very helpful. I can already tell he’s going to be very bright as he gets older.”
“Yes I can see how much he admires you, Isabella. It’s very clear in the way he looks at you. This is a wonderful picture of Bill on a broom. It won’t be long until he’s a student here. This must be your Justice. He has so much of his mother and his father in him. He’s truly a beautiful child. Ah Minerva all packed I see.”
“Yes Professor. Here are the instructions for my seventh years and the assignment for the first years. I’ll be back tomorrow evening unless they need me to stay longer.”
“If they do feel free to. Just send instructions for your classes. I’ll see to it that their covered even if I have to do it myself. Remus, Isabella please write me if you need anything.”
“We will Professor. Thank you for everything. Keep the photographs. I’m sure the other teachers will love to see them.” I said with a smile, the first genuine one I had been able to muster in hours.
“It’s no problem. Here you can take my fire if you would like.”
“Thank you Professor. We can never repay you for all you’ve done.” Remus said as he stepped into the fire.
“It’s my absolute pleasure to be able of assistance to you children.” He said as I stepped into the fire.
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