Chapter 1 : Prologue
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11 OCTOBER 2032
She disembarked safely. I was sorry to see her go; she had begun to seem like one of the crew. I think she was sorry to go, too: a lot of uncertainty awaits her at the other end. But she knew what she was getting into. Part of me wishes she was staying behind to keep our spirits up Ė or that we could go with her and avoid this war thatís started. But I know as well as she does what will happen if we all cross over with her. Lily tried to change history and see what could have been, and only burned in the end.
Shipís functions appear to be running as normal, but I sense that something is not right Ė like time is catching up with us and we are slowly disappearing. It is possible that this will all be erased and I will never remember this log entry.
* * * * * * *
2 May 2032
Iím really bored.
I know, I shouldnít be complaining about my life, especially not today Ė I should be thankful Iím even alive at all. Remembrance Day used to be a much bigger deal, in the days right after the war, when I was young. Nowadays, itís still hugely important to my parents and everyone who grew up during the war, but to my generation itís just a day we get off work Ė unless youíre unemployed, like I am, and then itís a day like any other.
My friend Marta says I could walk into any old place and ask for a job and theyíd probably give it to me, just because Iím the daughter of a famous person, and thus famous myself. But thatíd be cheap. And I hate relying on fame for anything; Iím sick of being famous, but I can never escape it. Iím even named after well-known people.
Yep, thatís me Ė Lily Luna PotterÖ because my parents, who are brilliant enough to save the wizarding world, were apparently not creative enough to think of original names for any of their three children. And it runs in the family; some of my cousins on my Mumís side are named after other family members too.
Itís quite a shame really, since my grandmother and namesake Lily Potter was apparently like the nicest woman on the planet, and gorgeous. Everyone expects me to be just like her, and then they're disappointed when they meet me and Iím not.
I suppose I'm slightly better off than Albus, though. Poor Albus Severus Potter, whose middle name comes from a man who hated Dad and apparently was in love with my namesake Lily. And of course my other brother, James, is named after our grandfather Ė the one who was married to Lily. Gross. I try not to think about my name too much. Thanks a lot, Dad.
(Okay, I complain, but I know none of this is really valid because Iíve always wanted to name my future daughter Hyacinth Ė I think itís a lovely flower and would be a beautiful name. Everyone Iíve ever met disagrees. Even Albus thinks itís terrible, and he knows all about terrible names.)
Itís evening, and Iím home alone. There is no firewhisky in my flat because Marta drank it all, and I have no money to go to the pub because Iím currently unemployed. My flatmate Iris has a job and a social life, so sheís not home. Maybe Iíll just visit my neighbour Lance, and if heís home weíll watch one of his bad superhero films (which will inevitably lead to a long debate about feminism, because women never get leading roles in those films).
But I donít feel like sitting through two hours of car chases and shooting and men wearing capes and tights saving the day. So I make some tea and sip it slowly as I sit on the sofa, and flip through the magazines on the coffee table to see if thereís anything interesting. There isnít Ė they are Irisís magazines, mostly all of them full of knitting patterns or gardening tips. Sometimes I wonder if I live with a twenty-four-year-old or a seventy-year-old.
After the table is tidy, I stand up and wander with my half-full mug of tea, taking care that the hot liquid doesnít slop over the rim, and straighten a crooked picture in the hallway. As I remove my hand from the top of the dark wooden frame, I look into the faces of my family as they grin back at me from the picture. Itís the most dysfunctional picture Iíve ever seen, as there are way too many people in my extended family to keep track of, and everyone in this moving photograph is running about and generally failing at being normal. But weíre all smiling.
I sit back down on the pale blue checkered sofa, and with no other distractions, I actually begin to think about Remembrance Day the way it was meant to be thought about. The picture of my Mumís side of the family is fresh in my mind; all of the adults fought in the war. There would be more people in that picture if there hadnít been a war or a Dark Lord killing everyone. And Dadís side of the family would actually exist.
Mumís parents are great. Nana Molly somehow manages to spoil all twelve of her grandchildren (one of whom Ė surprise! Ė is named after her), and Granddad Arthur tries to get all of us interested in Muggle things, for Merlin only knows what reason. Heís actually succeeded in convincing Albus to start a plug collection, so thatís always interesting to hear about at family parties: how many new plugs Albus has got for his collection. Just kidding, itís incredibly dull.
I wish I could have known my grandparents on Dadís side, too; they sound like they were interesting people. And I mean actually interesting, not ďinterestingĒ in the way Albus collects plugs. James stole a map off Dadís desk once, a map that showed all of Hogwarts, including where all its inhabitants were at any moment. (When Albus and I found out about it, the map changed hands a lot at school: we were always stealing it from each other. It was easiest for me though; Iíd often just leave it in my dormitory and the boys couldnít get to it up there, due to the Gryffindor dormitory stairs changing into a slide if boys entered.)
The point of this little anecdote is that one of the creators of this map was my grandfather James Potter. (This was one of the reasons James (meaning my brother Ė see why this is confusing?) insisted he should have priority with it Ė he was older than Albus and I, and he shared the same name as one of the creators.) James Sr was apparently a lot like Uncle George Ė a prankster who loved to make people laugh.
But Lily and James Potter (the original ones, I mean) died when Dad was only a year old, because a Dark wizard named Voldemort killed them along with hundreds of other people. Everyone I know has friends or relatives who died in the war against Voldemort. Thirty-four years ago today was the Battle of Hogwarts, when Dad finally defeated Voldemort. Itís a day of sadness, remembrance, and happiness all rolled into one: a day for the lost loved ones, and the birth of a new wizarding world.
I often wonder what the world would be like if Voldemort had never existed: Dadís parents would still be alive, and so would Teddyís parents, and Uncle Fred. And I wouldnít be a reluctant, reclusive celebrity Ė Iíd just be a normal girl.
With dreams of a different life in which no war had intervened with my family, I drop off to sleep on the sofa.
Authorís Note: Welcome to my new novel Ė itís my very first attempt at Next-Gen (finally)! This is for Infinityxís sci-fi challenge, so itís going to be a little out there! I may as well warn you now, if youíre particularly attached to any canon ship, I suggest you run very far in the opposite direction :P Anyway, let me know what you think of it so far! Thanks for reading :)
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