A/N: I HAD TO WRITE IT IN A CERTAIN ORDER TO GET MY MIND TO MAKE IT HAPPEN SO I'VE JUST STATED WHEN ALL THE PARTS OF THE STORY ARE TAKING PLACE SO YEAH. I don't own anything.
* The Next Day *
There wasn't a magical being in the world who didn't know about Albus Dumbledore. Albus Dumbledore, the wise and the brave, the odd and the brilliant, the great and the graceful. We knew how he carried himself. Always respectable, always magnificent Albus Dumbledore. And I know that Albus Dumbledore made a remarkable headmaster at Hogwarts.
But honestly, I would prefer my headmaster clumsy and flustered. Undeniably brave, extraordinary devoted and absolutely deserving of respect, but all the same, a guy who could somehow be on the same level as you. You didn't feel like you had to impress him. You felt like you wanted to impress him. Like a friend.
And when Neville Longbottom stumbled through the door with red cheeks and messy hair, it didn't matter that he was my headmaster and it didn't matter that he was as old as my father and it didn't matter that he was the ultimate authority figure. He could be a friend. That was when I realised that was his policy as headmaster. That's how he got to that position. He was trusted and respected and liked by his students, and he protected them, and he understood them, and he made school better for every underdog, because he had been one the majority of his life.
So I knew why he was there, and I knew why I was there, and I was nervous, but I knew I could trust Professor Longbottom, and Scorpius knew he could trust Professor Longbottom, and it was the right thing to do.
"The healer- I mean, um, doctor, said you wanted to explain to me what happened. She said you didn't feel safe explaining this to anyone else," Longbottom said. "What happened to you, Emerald?"
* The Night Before *
My mind starting to pull thoughts together. It took a while for me to register everything that happened. I was in the kitchen. I was drinking. Father apparated into the house. He started to hurt me. Then, darkness. I couldn't remember what came after that.
I had no idea where I was, but I could hear Scorpius. "I just wanna hold her really tight but I can't without hurting her. You watch me. As soon as she's better, I'm going to hug her until she hexes me off."
"I'm just so glad she's gonna be okay," Albus breathed in relief.
But I couldn't hear Father. He could be anywhere. He could be right behind them.
My eyes flew open and I jolted into a sitting position. "Scorpius- Ow!" I was overcome with a sudden burst of intense pain spreading through my rib cage and my heart struggled in my chest as I lost the ability to breathe.
"Whoa whoa whoa lay back down," Scorpius commanded quickly, lowering me back to the bed I became aware I was lying on. Scorpius stood over me, his eyes full of worry. "Don't panic. Breathe slowly and you'll be fine. I know it feels horrible but panicking will only make it worse. Trust me, you're going to be okay. You're safe."
He turned around. "She sat up too quickly," he explained to someone I couldn't see, before he turned back to me.
Everything started to become more apparent to me as the air returned to my lungs. I wasn't home anymore. I was in a hospital, judging by the white ceiling and walls and everything else. The medical equipment, including the heart monitor I hadn't noticed beeping beside my bed, and the little tubes taped to my face were all muggle technology.
Beside Scorpius, a middle aged woman stood over me. Her hair was a very pale blonde colour, like father's and she wore rectangular glasses. Her face was slightly wrinkled. She wore a white coat over her dark blue scrubs. I could see Albus behind her in a chair.
My ribs ached strongly but not more than I could stand. I was under a white blanket in a hospital gown. My arms were purple with bruises.
"Miss Malfoy? I'm Doctor Cross. Your brother and your friend called an ambulance and brought you here whilst you were unconscious after you were attacked. You broke four ribs and punctured your lung but not too badly. We doubt they'll be any long lasting effects but you'll need to rest here for a while. You can't try to sit up so quickly or anything like that again for a little while, but I doubt you will. Adrenaline is all. Can you remember anything?"
"I remember being attacked. He kept kicking me and kicking me and eventually I passed out," I recalled.
"Do you know who the man who attacked you was?"
"Am I obliged to tell you who the man who attacked me was?" I asked, not angrily, not cheekily, just curiously.
Doctor Cross shrugged. "You're not obliged to tell me, no, but I think you ought to tell someone. Speaking of telling someone, Mr Malfoy, has anyone contacted your parents?"
"That's not necessary," Scorpius replied. "Emerald is sixteen."
Doctor Cross's jaw tightened and she nodded. "Very well. I'll leave you three alone to talk things over," she smiled, before walking out of the curtains surrounding the area my bed was situated in and off down a corridor.
"Actually, I think I better give you two some privacy," Al said, standing up. "I'm gonna go get some coffee. If you guys want me back later I won't be far. I've got time. I'm really glad you're alright, Emma," he told me, squeezing my hand gently before he followed Doctor Cross's path.
I turned to Scorpius. "What happened after I passed out?"
He sat on the edge of my bed like he always did. "I figure we only got to you seconds after you slipped unconscious. We came home with the Christmas tree and you weren't there. When we were walking towards the kitchen we could hear these weird noises. We opened the door with our wands up but Father disapparated before the spells hit him. Al called an ambulance on his mobile thingy. You were really struggling to breathe but the doctors managed to help you. Just as well because I would have had to perform magic in front of them. I would have healed you at home but I didn't know about internal organs and complicated things and Father could have come back and it wasn't worth the risk. I don't know what they did to you but I'm glad they did it."
"Okay. How long have I been here for?"
"I don't know. A few hours?"
I was quiet for a minute, thinking carefully, before I looked up at my brother again. "What do you want to do?"
Scorpius looked down at my hands. He pulled them into his and started to circle his thumbs on top of them. "I don't think I can risk this happening ever again. When we found you there, it just felt like... everything inside of me was collapsing. I can't lose you, and whilst he's out there and angry, there's always this risk. I want him locked up, Emma. I want him away from us for good. It's for the best for everyone," he confessed, still looking down at my hands.
"Me too." Scorp looked up at me, surprised. "It could have been you he got, and he could have done much worse. He could have killed you. And I can't risk you getting hurt. Plus Alice and Maisy live with us. There's too much to lose," I explained.
He nodded, a smile spreading on his face. He was scared, clearly, but he was relieved to. This was the first step to putting it behind us.
"How do you want to go about this? Teddy?"
I considered this for a second. "We have to explain things to Teddy, since Mother used to take us to his house sometimes when she needed to. But to get it to the aurors? We should probably tell Professor Longbottom. He knows something's going on anyway. I think he's showed us a lot of patience and kindness and he deserves to know what's going on. We can trust him to get the problem to the aurors."
"You're right," Scorpius nodded. "Will you mind speaking with him tomorrow? I'm going to be right here with you. It's not just you who needs to report Father. It's time I stepped up."
"As long as Longbottom can get here, yeah. It's better safe and sorry."
"You're right. Me and Al are going to put wards on the mansion to keep Alice and Maisy safe. They're thinking of moving out but that might be a while so it's worth it."
"I can't wait to move out of that house," I muttered.
"Me neither," Scorpius sighed. "I don't want a house. I want a home."
"Maybe that's why Father left," I murmured. "Maybe that's what he was looking for too."
"Maybe if the aurors find him and he gets sent to St Mungo's he'll be able to find whatever he lost."
"If he went to St Mungo's and got better, would you take him back into your family?" I wondered quietly.
"I don't know. I don't know if I could, because I could have lost you today, and if I had, then I would never be able to forgive him no matter what. I replay things in my head. I have nightmares about every time he flipped out, from us getting away clean, to the bruises and bumps, to the times he tried to kill us, and when Mother died, and, I..." he sighed again. "I don't know if I could ever look at him and not think of those scarring things."
I shook my head. "One step at a time. Let's not get ahead of ourselves."
"Yeah you're right. But I've gotta go and send Alice a letter to tell her you're okay because she's really worried."
"How does she know I'm-"
"We couldn't just leave her to go home and find shattered glass and none of us there," Scorpius pointed out.
"I'll be right back."
"I'm not going anywhere."
Scorp ruffled my hair before he slipped out through the curtains. I was alone for a minute before someone entered, that someone being Al.
"Oh. Hey," I said casually. Practise makes perfect.
"I saw Scorp leave so I thought I'd come keep you company," he explained, sitting down in a chair right by my bed.
"How thoughtful," I smiled. "Thank you for calling me an ambulance. And thank you for keeping Scorp calm. We both know he needed just as much help as I did."
"Scorpius is my best friend. And even though me and you don't talk as much as we should, I care about you a lot. Even more than I realised. Tonight, I thought we were going to lose you, and I was so scared. And I'm never scared," Al admitted.
"I'm sorry I upset you," I offered.
"It wasn't your fault. But I wish you would have told someone before you got hurt."
"I didn't know he was going to attack me," I responded, confused.
"You knew something. You knew something was going on. That's why you kept drinking. It can't be a coincidence that you started to drink heavily and then your father appeared and beat you to unconsciousness," Al protested.
I bit my lip. "I was too scared to talk about it. I know that makes no sense, and I should've-"
"No. No Emma it's fine. I understand why you did what you did. You were scared. It's alright. Shut me up if this is none of my business but are you and Scorp thinking of reporting your dad?"
"We're going to see if we can call in Professor Longbottom tomorrow."
Albus breathed out slowly. "Wow. Big step. This is... this is really good for you two."
"Aside from angering our father, receiving a whole bunch of negative attention and offending a bunch of people we know, right?" I sighed.
"Screw them. Their opinions aren't important. Your safety is."
"You know how Dom and Louis are going to react," I said sadly.
"If Dom and Louis get offended that you didn't tell them instead of trying to support you then they're not worth your time and they're not really worth mine."
"They're your family."
"So are you and Scorpius. Besides, you have to love your family. You don't have to like them," Al reasoned.
"Longbottom is free to come to the hospital tomorrow so we can tell him everything," Scorpius announced, returning. "But Doctor Cross says you should try to get to sleep. The more you rest the faster we can get you out of here."
"I need to go home anyways otherwise my parents will ask more questions than I'm willing to answer," Albus said, standing up. He turned to me. "Sweet dreams. Don't worry about anything. I've got your back and so does Scorp," he assured me, before he leant down and pressed a kiss to the top of my head. Then he turned to Scorpius and hugged him. "Floo me if you start to have a break down. I don't think the doctors will appreciate you waking Emma up," he joked, but there was an element of seriousness behind his humour.
"Thank you for everything," Scorp answered. "Really, Al, I mean it."
Al shook his head. "Don't mention it. I'll see you guys tomorrow." He waved and walked out of the curtains and off down the ward.
Scorpius looked at the two chairs by my bed thoughtfully before he pushed them together.
"What are you doing?" I asked.
"I explained to Doctor Cross how I have to stay here and watch over you for the sake of my sanity and she says it's okay for me to stay tonight so I'm trying to form a bed," he explained.
"Scorp you're like six foot tall, you're going to go right off the end," I told him incredulously.
He turned to me with a wide, optimistic smile. "Then I shall sleep sat upright if I sleep at all. I don't think the nurses want me sleeping on the floor. Safety hazard or whatever."
"Scorp... I'll be okay if you want to sleep at home," I said worriedly.
His face fell and his cheeks tinged pink ever-so-slightly. He cast his eyes down in shame. "But I won't be," he mumbled.
I realised my mistake. I could be alone right now but he couldn't. He couldn't get by with Alice or Albus or Danny. He had to see that I was okay with his own eyes to get through this. Tonight had been tougher on him than it had been on me. "Of course. I'm sorry. Just do whatever's most comfy for you, okay?" I corrected myself.
He nodded and forced a smile back onto his face.
"Scorpius. We're gonna keep each other safe. And we're gonna do great at it. He's not gonna take us down. Every time he tries we make it through, right? Always have, always will. Remember: I can tell you anything and you can tell me anything, and we look out for each other and love each other no matter what. Because that's what brothers and sisters and best friends are for. That's what family is for. We're all we've got. We have one another through anything, and that will never change, because I love you, and you love me," I recited slowly.
It wasn't so easy to breathe and my body ached and I was tired, but death itself couldn't stop me from being there for my brother.
"I love you too," Scorp whispered, kissing my forehead. "Get some sleep."
I relaxed into the bed and turned my head to the side slightly, watching Scorpius curl himself up on the chairs. He wriggled around a little before he found a comfortable position. It only took seconds before he fell asleep. He was exhausted, and so was I.
* The Next Day *
I looked up to Scorpius, sat by my side. He nodded, encouraging me to go first as Professor Longbottom took another seat, facing my brother and I.
"Professor, we have a problem," I started. "We've had a problem for a while now, and we couldn't tell anyone, but we think we better tell someone now, because we should have done a long time ago. You were really the only person we could talk to. We didn't really know if the aurors would take this up or how to ask them too, but we want to offer a statement."
"Scorpius told me that you wanted to offer a statement. That meant that I had to call an auror to hear you out. Oh- here he is. You two both know Teddy Lupin, right?"
We watched the blue haired boy walk into the curtains as smiles spread on all of our faces. Of course we knew Teddy. He was distantly related to us, but the primary reason we knew each other better was that the Weasleys were like family to us and like family to him. We had to stay with Teddy through a couple of our father's episodes when we were younger, and he'd been around whilst we stayed with the Potters during Father's episodes too.
One time when I was around eleven he actually asked me if my daddy ever hurt me. I told him he didn't, and Teddy said to me, 'Well if he ever does make sure you tell someone. You can tell me'. That was the day I decided he'd make an incredible auror. Clearly I predicted the future.
"Sure they know me," Teddy replied cheerily as he embraced Scorp and I in turn. "We're sort of cousins but not exactly." Then he turned serious and took the seat next to Longbottom. "We need you to tell us everything as far back as it goes. Who this guy was and why he did this to you. Everything that's relevant. Then we'll take it back to the auror office and we'll track him down and have him arrested."
"For the record, we'll put wards on your house to keep your family safe and you'll be safe in Hogwarts," Longbottom added.
"Absolutely," Teddy said. "So, take your time. Whenever your ready."
I nodded and took a deep breath. There was no easy way to explain this. So I just had to go with it.
"Our mother and father really did love us. I know that they did. But things were more complicated than that. They were... both... kinda screwed up. They had nightmares and dark thoughts, and they fought them off as best as they could, but when I was around six, I guess, our Dad took a really bad turn. We don't know what triggered it, but he just went insane. Sometimes he thought that we were other people. He would get us mixed up with people who aren't even alive anymore, and he was convinced that we were these people. And sometimes, he thought that he was someone else, and he acted like the person he thought he was. I don't know how it happened. He just went crazy. And then sometimes he'd get really mad and our mum would send us out of the house to get us safe, but sometimes... she didn't manage to, and he'd try to hurt us," I introduced.
Longbottom and Teddy nodded their heads as I talked, their faces lined with concerned concentration. I looked at Scorpius, inviting him to join in.
"Sometimes things got really violent. Sometimes it wasn't just trying to hurt us. He hit us both several times growing up for various reasons. As we got older, things got more serious. He had these episodes more often, he hit us more often, and then things got really out of control, and on separate occasions Emma and I were hospitalised after he attempted to kill us. I was twelve when he tried to kill me and Emma was thirteen when he tried to kill her."
"The thing is," I began hesitantly, preparing to drop the real news. "A few weeks after he tried to kill me, after I got out of hospital, he had this episode where he was convinced that our mother was Bellatrix Lestrange." Both men stiffened at the name. Both men had lost to her. "He suddenly remembered who he was and then he was shouting at Mother about how he had to leave because we weren't safe around him, and then she started shouting about how she wasn't stable enough to handle us alone. And then... we were outside of the room... we didn't see what happened, but there was this loud bang, and we ran in, and Father was so surprised. And Mother was on the floor, bleeding, and there was a gun on the floor. Father picked it up and disapparated. We don't know if he shot her or she shot herself. She died within a couple of minutes. After that, we didn't see Father again until last night when he attacked me. He sent me a note, telling me he was coming back, but he didn't sign it a week or so before he came to my house. I wanted to tell someone but I was too scared. When he appeared last night, he told me the death eaters had told him that I reported him to the Ministry. He made that whole thing up in his head. He truly believed that had happened. He needs help," I finished.
A stunned silence fell over the room. I waited nervously, biting my lip just a little and wringing my hands. Scorpius slipped his hand into mine, holding it tight in his own nervousness.
Finally, Teddy spoke. "What happened to your mother's body after she died?"
"Father took it," Scorpius informed them. "It was about half an hour after she died, about the time when Emma and I decided we needed to call the Ministry or something. So we were walking towards the lounge to floo the auror department, and we heard him apparate in. I know it was him because he was weeping. We hid in the kitchen. We came out of there after we heard his disapparate away and she wasn't there anymore. Neither was the blood. There was no trace of her. We just didn't know what to do. We didn't think anyone would believe us and we were so lost and confused and frightened. We thought someone would split us up from each other, and me and Emma are best friends. We couldn't think rationally, so we didn't say anything about it. We lived alone with just each other until our friend Alice moved in maybe a year ago after she found out she was pregnant," he explained
"We were sort of scared out of the idea of ever telling anyone about our father because our mother used to threaten us out of it. She was an amazing woman and she loved us, but whenever Father hurt someone, including her, she'd get really aggressive and threaten to beat us if we told anyone," I added.
"Do you have any idea at all where we might find Draco Malfoy?" Professor Longbottom asked.
"No Sir," we replied simultaneously.
"Well you guys definitely have a case. If you'll look over everything I wrote and sign for me, I'll head straight back to The Ministry and report this to the head auror."
In turn, Scorp and I looked over the statement and signed our names.
"Thank you," Teddy said, standing up. "You did a good thing today. You're incredibly brave, both of you."
He shook hands with us professionally, before exiting the room.
Professor Longbottom smiled at us as he stood up. "I knew you two had a dark past. I couldn't have imagined a past this dark, but I'm glad you called me in today. I'm glad that you trust me and I'm glad that you're brave enough to make your lives better by getting your dad some help. I'm incredibly proud and you should be too. This is what Gryffindor is about. Your bravery, your loyalty... well done. Emerald, I hope you feel better soon. I hope you guys have a merry Christmas."
Then he shook our hands and departed.
Scorpius breathed out a long breath. "Well shit. We really did it."
"Day's not over yet, Scorp. There's something else I've gotta do."
He swallowed. "Are you sure want to do this today? I don't want you to wear yourself out."
"They've got to hear it from me. I can't risk them finding out some other way otherwise they'll never forgive me."
* A few hours later *
A chilling silence settled over the room.
Beside me, Danny was tense, his fists tight and his jaw locked, his eyes hard. Not angry, not yet. Just defensive. Waiting.
Louis and Dom didn't make a sound.
Dom was looking from me to Danny, fixing her eyes on each of us in turn, questioning us. She looked... appalled. Furious. Disappointed. Betrayed.
Louis kept his eyes on the ground.
"Why did you never tell us any of this?" Dominique asked.
"My mother told Scorpius and I that if we ever told anyone about our Father she would hurt us, or hurt each other. Once, I was hospitalised, and Scorpius went crazy because Mother made out like what happened to me was my own fault. He screamed at her and told her he was going to tell everyone what Father did. I was unconscious at the time, but Scorpius told me he was alone in the room with her and myself. He said she pulled out her wand and held it against my throat and leaned towards him and whispered 'I dare you.' She went on to describe what she'd do to me if he told but I'd rather not go into detail," I murmured.
"You told Danny," she whispered harshly, burning anger growing in her eyes.
"Astoria used to send Emma and sometimes Scorp to my house when Draco broke down. Sometimes she would have nightmares or bruises. Sometimes she would cry or faint. I saw a lot of it happen. She only explained everything to me once she was sure she was safe," Danny explained for me. He spoke very calmly. Danny didn't like to get mad. Unless he was getting mad at Louis. But he was restraining himself.
"You never tell us anything!" Dom shouted suddenly. "You never told me anything about anything! You told me I couldn't meet your parents because your father was ashamed of his past behaviour and I'm a Weasley! One of them is dead and I didn't know!"
"Yeah well I'm sorry you weren't my priority when my mother was dying in front of me. Why does this bother you so much?" I wondered.
"Because!-" she snapped her mouth shut, stopping herself from saying something. "It doesn't matter! The problem is I call you one of my best friends and I don't know fuck all about you! This year we've hardly been around each other! And maybe I don't want to be around you, if you all you ever do is lie to me. I'm done with all of this."
She stormed out of the room as I had predicted. I looked over to Louis who was still watching the floor. Finally he looked up. He stared at me a little before he finally said, "Emma I just don't know. I just don't know anything. I just... I need... I've gotta go. I've gotta go think. Somewhere... else," he got out, before he too left the room.
"I called it," I said hollowly.
"We don't need them honey," Danny reassured me, kissing my head, his voice shaking just a little.
But we did need them. We really did.
A/N: I'M SO SORRY I HAVEN'T EDITED THIS SO I DON'T KNOW ANYTHING ABOUT MISTAKES SO IF YOU SEE THEM PLEASE POINT THEM OUT BUT DON'T POINT THEM OUT ANGRILY because I'll feel guilty.
I'm sorry I've been gone for so long! I've had the worst writer's block and my life was bad and I've been working on it and I wrote the whole chapter out but then I hated it so I re-did it and THIS WAS THE RESULT SO I HOPE IT'S GOOD ENOUGH FOR YOU GUYS.
THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR REVIEWS AND FAVOURITES BUT I HAVE NO IDEA WHERE I WAS UP TO SO IF I MISS YOU OUT I'M REALLY SORRY
alex_weasley, Bubblez, bubbaduckie06, CauldronCharm130, harrypotter417, inkrose, Justine_Marilyn, Sara_Potter, Skyler315 and WeAreAllPotterheads, thank you SO MUCH for adding this story to your favourites. If I've already thanked you, sorry. If I missed you out, REALLY SORRY. THANK YOU ..., itsonlyjamespotter, Rosie Howard,
Meggnog, GnomiDays, potterfan310 and BBWotter for the amazing reviews on the last chapter. REVIEWS MAKE ME SO HAPPY I LOVE YOU GUYS.
I don't own anything and I hope you enjoyed this chapter and thanks for reading and please review and point out any mistakes and I don't own anything and okay I'm done ^_^ x