Why You Should be Afraid of Lily Potter
Dumbledore for one of the few times in his life was afraid, really afraid. In front of him Lily Potter was fuming about the incident that had taken place an hour before. He frowned, thinking how his plan had backfired again. Blasted Harry Potter. He had finally managed to put Aaron and his friends under a confundus charm that would lead them into the obstacle course he had the other teachers prepare before the year started. He knew that Quirrell would strike that night, after he got the letter to come to the Ministry of Magic. He had hit the three when they had enjoyed their day outside under the tree.
It had been really simple. He had left the castle, supposedly following the letter; of course, his taking a broom was a calculated move to give Aaron the time to be tested through the obstacles. It would have worked out perfectly, with him stepping in at the last moment after Aaron had faced Voldemort and would finally be much more open for his guidance. But, again, Harry Potter had caused one of his plans to fail. First, he had taken over saving Hermione Granger from the troll, sending his little brother to safety. He had thought Aaron would be the one to save the girl, proving his Gryffindor traits and his skills. Only because of that he hadn't reacted when the wards informed him of the troll entering the castle.
Then Harry had clearly forbidden Aaron and his friends to go after the Philosopher's Stone, because it reeked of a trap and they weren't prepared for that. Not to mention that it would be stupid to dance to the tune the one setting the trap had chosen. Then Hagrid's dragon. Of course, he had known about it, but perhaps this time Aaron, as he and his friends had been the ones to find out about it first, would have been the heroes. But no, Harry and Fred Weasley had safely got the dragon away and even avoided being caught out of bed. How they had done that he didn't know, but it was really annoying. Hence why, in the end, he had needed to charm the three first-years to see his plan succeed.
Only for Harry Potter to again interfere and take over the command of the rescue mission. From what Sirius had told them all, Harry had outduelled Quirrell before the black mist that was Voldemort had risen from the now dead man's body. He hadn't thought that Quirrell would be that stupid to share his body with a parasitic wraith. It had been a death sentence from the start. All of his carefully planned obstacles hadn't stood a chance in the face of Harry Potter. He had circumvented most of them and kept the first-years out of harm's way. The boy was a problem, but right now he couldn't do anything about it.
He had to worry about himself in the face of the most powerful witch of her generation, Lily Potter. He was sure if he said one wrong word, he would be hexed badly and he knew that she was nobody you took lightly. She was fast and unpredictable with her wand. While he might have more raw power, she had speed and deviousness on her side. That was how she had beaten Bellatrix Lestrange. And when her children were in danger, she became worse than a lioness.
"I want answers, Albus and I want them now!" Lily demanded, "So far, my fourteen years old son had to protect a first-year girl from a mountain troll, stop his younger brother and his friends being hurt by an obstacle course under a freaking school full of children and in the end, duel his Defence Against the Dark Arts teacher to the death. More, my eleven years old son and his friends were put under a confundus charm to even enter the place, where you kept a dangerous magical artefact hidden - without so much as a ward to keep out the students. Are you out of your mind?"
"Lily, I assure you the students were safe. I warned them about not going into the corridor," Dumbledore tried to appease her which obviously didn't work because she blew up hearing that.
Lily quickly fired several spells at Dumbledore, which he only barely managed to shield against, though it didn't matter to her, because she then started to furiously fight and more and more spells got past his shield. In the end his wand sailed into her hand and he felt utterly humiliated. More, he felt the allegiance of the Elder Wand change to Lily. This couldn't be true; he had fought so hard for that wand. Then his body ached and he realised that he had been hit with a powerful stinging charm that targeted large areas when it hit.
"You warned them? They are children! Curious children that would go there simply to satisfy their curiosity about just what was so dangerous about that place. You have been a teacher most of your life. Are you really idiotic enough to not realise that if you forbid something while making it sound interesting and mysterious they would listen to you? That's encouraging them! You should have told them you had to do maintenance works and therefore warded the corridor off to prevent accidents. And a simply age line would have done the trick. You have few eighteen year olds here, therefore setting it to that age would have worked perfectly. Building works aren't interesting for seventh years. And a simple locking charm that can be undone by alohomora is in no way sufficient to secure a door behind which a giant Cerberus is kept!" Lily shouted.
James and Sirius wisely kept to the back. They knew that it was dangerous to get between Lily and her target. They were just glad that none of them was said target. James could only admire how sexy his wife looked getting so worked up. He also knew that he would need to calm her down once they were back home. It would be a long night. The last time she had been in such a mood the twins had been conceived. Not that he minded that in the least.
"I will tell you what you will do in the future. You will stop placing the students in danger. You will inform the parents like you are obliged to do in case there is a general danger in the castle and that definition is to be determined by the charter and not your ideas or worse Hagrid's. He is nice and all, but you can't seriously let him play with all the really dangerous creatures he likes. He has to finally realise that not everybody has his toughness to deal with them."
James got the distinct impression that Harry would get an earful over his involvement with Hagrid's dragon. How she had found out he didn't know. It had been a coincidence that he had found out, but Hagrid had been so depressed over having to let the dragon go that he had drunk a lot and James had been at the pub that evening and coerced the truth out of Hagrid. He knew that Harry and his group were regularly over at Hagrid's hut. They would definitely want to help Hagrid get out of that mess. While he was proud of his son for helping Hagrid, he also knew that a dragon, even a baby, was really dangerous.
He hadn't told Lily anything, not wanting to get Harry in trouble. His plan had been to take Harry aside after the school year was over and talk about acceptable risks and non-acceptable ones. Next to giving his son 'The Talk'. Harry was turning fifteen this summer and it was high time for him to tell him all about sex. It would be embarrassing, but they would get through that. James knew that Harry was attracting a lot of female attention with his good looks and his talent.
Harry was the youngest Quidditch player in a century, getting on the Gryffindor team at age eleven, youngest captain in seven decades and overall top student of his year. On top of that he was the heir of the Potter family and they were an ancient and noble house. Whatever girl managed to win Harry's heart would become the future Lady Potter. While the younger girls dreamed of marrying Aaron because he was the Boy-Who-Lived, the older ones dreamed of Harry or, for some, of his best friend Cedric Diggory. The two would be major heartbreakers in the future if they weren't already. So far, he hadn't heard about any girlfriends, but that was only a question of time.
"Next point, you will replace Binns as the History teacher. It's a disgrace that he still teaches with how unable he is of teaching the children anything. He is boring as hell and ninety-nine per cent of the children are unable to take in anything he says. Next you will hire a competent Defence teacher next year. The level of the students in that class is so low it is embarrassing. I have talked to Amelia recently over tea and she complains horribly about the low scores Hogwarts graduates get in Defence and Potions when they test for auror positions. The same is true for healers at St. Mungo's. I will personally give Severus a piece of my mind about what he calls teaching.
"Additionally, I will tell Minerva what I think of her delaying help for my sons in that insane obstacle course you came up with. From what Sirius told us it was so easy that a first-year would have got through. I can't prove yet that you set that thing up to test my son in some crazy idea of yours, but Merlin have mercy on you if you did, because I won't!" Lily ended her rant and stormed out of the office, probably towards her next target, not bothering with returning the wand to Dumbledore.
James really had to suppress a snicker seeing Dumbledore's stumped face. It was really incredible how his wife tore into the supposed strongest wizard alive. And right now, Albus Dumbledore seemed utterly defeated. They would have to watch to see how this developed. He was now more secure than ever in his decision to not follow Albus Dumbledore's lead anymore.
Harry sat in front of his mother and knew he was in trouble. Her look was very clear in that. He wondered what exactly she was blaming him for. He had done some things she wouldn't approve of this year, he would freely admit that, but nothing he thought would cause that look on her face. He had after all only gone to the third-floor corridor to save Aaron, Neville and Hermione, which he didn't think he could be blamed for.
"So, Harry James," she started, making Harry really worried. If she used his middle name, he was in serious trouble, he knew that from experience, "What can you tell me in your defence for your involvement in that dangerous act?" Lily asked sternly.
Harry knew that coming clean was the only way to avoid worse, but he really didn't know what she meant. None of his pranks had been dangerous and they didn't go too far either. It wasn't outright bullying but teaching those that did the bullying a lesson. His group never played any prank that was dangerous to their target, only embarrassing.
"Uhm, could you tell me which incident you are referring to, Mum? I somehow don't think going after Aaron, Neville and Hermione to save them is what has you this upset. You know I would never have let him go through something like that on his own and I was sure I had deterred him from going there pointing out a potential trap. Which was right, because he had been confunded into going there," Harry commented.
"No, you are right, that isn't what has me that upset, even if I don't like at all that you were in that danger. You did what was needed in that situation and I don't blame you but others for that. I am actually proud how you acted in that situation. Now think about what you did this year what was dangerous, really dangerous, and I don't include your night-time wanderings to play pranks on bullies in that. That's simple stupidity, but I blame your father for inspiring that in you," Lily replied.
Harry thought hard. What the hell had he done that had been dangerous enough to make his Mum this upset with him? He went over all the things that happened this year and his mind came to a screeching halt thinking about Norbert. Shit, how did she find out about that? He looked up and saw that she noticed that he had realised what she was upset about. This was not good. He sighted, better to get this over with.
"I guess you mean my involvement with helping Hagrid to get rid of his baby dragon," Harry stated resigned.
"Indeed. I am glad to see you realise now how foolish that was. A dragon is extremely dangerous, even as a baby," She declared, glaring at him, making him fell five years old again, when she had caught him climbing onto a bookshelf to get a cookie that she had taken away and warded against magic because she didn't want him to eat sweets when dinner was only half an hour away, "What were you thinking, Harry? You could have been hurt, poisoned, burnt and in real trouble if the Ministry found out about it. Keeping a dragon outside a preserve is illegal for a good reason."
Harry cringed hearing that. He knew that all, but Hagrid was his friend.
"I simply didn't want Hagrid to be in trouble. You know how he is; he loves all creatures, but especially the dangerous ones. We had to get the dragon somewhere safe before it became too big to be hidden and too violent to be controlled. We needed a long time for Hagrid to finally see reason. Fred and George suggested getting the dragon to Charlie, as he works with dragons. But we couldn't ask any of the teachers for help, because that would have meant having Dumbledore involved. And he would have manipulated things in his favour.
"As Aaron and his friends also knew about the dragon, the best I could do was taking charge of the operation myself. Cedric and I brewed a potion that would keep the dragon asleep during the journey. And as I had Dad's invisibility cloak, we knew we could manage to get Norbert out without being caught. The one part that didn't work out properly was George being bit by the dragon, but Madam Pomfrey didn't ask many questions when he said that it had happened while experimenting with stuff for new prank items.
"She knows that we do that regularly so it wasn't unbelievable. And as we regularly help her with stocking up on potions that she needs for the hospital wing, she is quite fond of us when we really mess up a bit with our pranks," Harry told the story, "Fred and I smuggled the crate with the dragon up to Astronomy Tower where some friends of Charlie took it with them on brooms. Fred and I avoided being caught by Filch with one of our tricks and then returned to Gryffindor Tower without anyone being the wiser."
Lily had a hard time listening. Her son had brewed a potion strong enough to keep a dragon asleep? How? And then pointing out that if he had asked the teachers for help Dumbledore would have manipulated things. She knew that those points were valid. She was surprised hearing that the group had won the favour of Madam Pomfrey by helping her with supplying the hospital wing, which she knew Harry could do easily with the knowledge he got from assisting her in her lab since he had been eight years old. She pinched the bridge of her nose. It was difficult to find an appropriate punishment for Harry. He had only done it to help a friend, something she and James had taught him to do. He also didn't want to involve Dumbledore, thanks to their warnings of the man and his manipulations. Those were clearly mitigating circumstances. What to do now, what to do?
"There are mitigating circumstances here that I will take into consideration. You will still be punished. So, for the first four weeks of the summer break you will take over the teaching of your younger siblings in Potions and Defence in the mornings. And I want a complete written list of the potions you can brew, including the ones you and your friends came up with," She started.
Harry nodded, knowing it could have been worse.
"Next to that you will clean the horses' stables at the manor without magic. That will be all, but you are really lucky that I know how valid your comments about Dumbledore are," She said.
"Yes, Mum," Harry agreed, not wanting to anger her more.
The coming weeks were hard on Harry, but he soldiered on. Cleaning up the stables took him and Aaron, who had volunteered to help after hearing why Harry had been punished, half a day. Thankfully there weren't that many horses on the grounds of Potter Manor, only four, as their mother couldn't ride a horse and Aaron wasn't that fond of the sport. Harry and the twins were the ones who were seen regularly on the back of a horse to go into the woods around the manor. Their father also liked taking relaxing rides from time to time. With how big the grounds were, they could go for an hour before reaching any place where muggles could get to them. The one problem was that usually the stables were only cleaned once every two months.
The horses and the house elves didn't get along well, so the Potters took care of the horses themselves and cleaning every two months was all that fitted into the schedule of them. Even with magic James needed an hour to get everything done for the twins to put fresh straw into the boxes. Harry was doing the major work of heaving the dung out of the boxes with a pitchfork and Aaron carted it off to the dung heap using two carts. By using two they could win time. Harry was really glad for his physical fitness now, as cleaning the stables was hard work. After finally finishing, he took a hot shower to get rid of the smell that cleaning the stables always brought with it. The afternoon he used to get a good part of his summer homework done. He had the habit to get it over with early on to have more time for the activities he liked and as he was somewhat restricted in what he did for the first four weeks he could as well do his school work.
He had told Fred and George about his punishment and they had felt for him. They were stuck at the Burrow during the holidays as well, as their mother didn't approve of their friends. She wasn't happy at all that Ron had failed to get closer to Aaron though, which was hypocritical, as Harry was Aaron's brother, and they therefore had the same parents and were raised the same. They also warned Harry that their sister Ginny, who would start Hogwarts next year, had a major crush on Aaron from all the Boy-Who-Lived stories she had been told as a child.
Harry didn't look forward to that mess next year, but hey, that was part of being an older brother. Looking out for your siblings and making sure they didn't get into things way over their heads. And he didn't doubt that the next year would be much different to this one.
And that's it for this story. There might be a sequel in the future, but for now this story is finished. Thank you all for your reviews and I hope that I will be back for more regular writing in the new year, though don't expect anything before the end of February, when the chemo therapy will be finished.
I hope everybody has a good start for the new year 2017.