Look, I finally got the chapter finished!
I am so sorry it took so long, but being the kind of person who forgets to write down her ultimate plan and then suffers chronic writer's block… Well, it happens.
Wasn't HBP great though? My views at the end. And no, this was pre-HBP and will remain so.
Anyway, enjoy and I hope none of you hate me too much. I've done my best and a big revelation was the only way to get the creative juices flowing. Well, that and Harry and Ginny's wicked comments.
Chapter 14: Revelations
James stared out of the window. He sighed. What had happened on Hallowe'en? What had happened at the battle?
More importantly, why did Lily have what had been his mother's ceremonial dagger? He had to wonder. After all, it never went to the new 'Mrs. Potter' until during the wedding in the blood-binding ceremony. So why had it changed hands now?
He was waiting for his parents to come. He was surprised they weren't there, but his father was on a deep job for the Department of Mysteries, and his mother was still working to heal patients after another attack on Diagon Alley. Would they come? Did they even know their son had been kidnapped yet again?
He pushed away the bitter thoughts. His parents loved him; he knew that. He just never got to see them anymore, so caught up in their jobs they were.
'This is Voldemort's legacy,' he thought. 'Even if we survive, if he's defeated, how many people are going to be distant, desensitised, from their family and friends? How many will be unable to survive in peace?'
Ginny hovered by Harry's bedside, her face showing three days of worry. His other wounds had been healed, but the remnants of the Ice-Blood Curse in his blood…
He was just lucky it had only been held on him for a moment or two. Blood manipulation for too long on a Moonlight Vampire could have terrible consequences. She had heard of some earlier Moonlight Vampires and such incidents. One had died from a full two minutes of the curse. Another had suffered the Acidis Curse – one that turned a victim's blood into acid in their vessels, but never hit the heart. That was part of a set of Dark Blood Curses.
Ginny yearned for him. She loved him so much, and but for a few kisses and the Vampire's claiming of him, she had not yet had the satisfaction her human side craved to make the mating and bond complete. As such, she was somewhat frustrated. Hence several very heavy training sessions.
Furthermore, she was concerned about Lily and James. Neither had spoken much after their capture. James sat and brooded – his friends had found him in all sorts of lonely places about the castle. Lily, on the other hand, seemed to be pretending that it hadn't happened. She was, however, wandering around with that dagger on her person – usually concealed in a boot.
Since Hallowe'en, both Lily and James seemed to acting differently anyway. Both were quicker, more accurate and deadlier in battle. Strange, old-fashioned turns of phrase were uttered. And their interaction with each other was baffling to say the least. James was not going out of his way to woo her, yet he seemed to be giving many more courtly actions – holding open doors, pulling out chairs, scolding others for bad language in 'the ladies' presence'. Lily almost seemed to flirt back, uttering sweet thank-yous, blushing, and giving loving smiles.
Suffice to say, Ginevra Weasley was confused.
A stirring in the bed beside her brought her back to Earth with a jolt.
"Harry?" She murmured.
He groaned and his eyes fluttered open. "Anyone destroy the Knight Bus for hitting me?"
Ginny laughed. "Harry, you're awake!"
He nodded painfully. "So I noticed by the sudden feeling of pain. And the headache."
"I'll call Madam Pomfrey." She murmured, kissing him on the forehead.
Harry nodded, unable to think clearly with the pain that racked his entire body.
Madam Pomfrey bustled over. "Oh thank goodness you're awake. The healing will go much more quickly now." She stated, flicking a wand over him to perform a Diagnosis Charm.
She nodded, and then helped him sit up in bed. "Drink this first, it will heal your blood from the spell. Then drink the Pain-Relief Potion. That will dull the pain as your blood is healed. You should be able to leave in a day or two."
Harry downed the potions quickly, barely letting them hit the sides in hope to diminish the terrible taste.
He still winced as he swallowed.
Ginny sat on the bed beside him, tracing patterns on his hand soothingly. "How're you feeling?"
"As I said, I think the Knight Bus hit me."
"Ah. No wonder my entire body feels like ice."
"Exactly. Poppy healed the rest whilst you were asleep, but that had to wait until you were awake for treatment." Ginny sighed, and kissed his temple. "I was so worried."
Harry gave her a smile and brought her hand to his mouth to kiss it tenderly. "Well, I'll be healed in a few hours. What happened with classes?"
"I set some research work. We'll test them on it when you're up to teaching."
"You sure?" He asked, looking at her carefully.
"Of course I am. Now hush." Ginny ordered.
"As you command, my lady." Harry smiled, giving a mock bow with his head and hearing a satisfying click of his neck.
"Ugh, that's disgusting, Harry." Ginny informed him with a wince.
"Once a month we want to rape and drink other people's blood, and you think my clicking my neck is disgusting?" Harry raised a brow.
Ginny flapped a hand at him flippantly. "Oh, pish, you know what I meant."
"Indeed I do, my beloved, indeed I do."
Brighid Potter walked through Hogwarts briskly, one hand firmly clasped around a Healer's kit, the other holding onto her husband's arm. This had been the first time the two of them had been released from duty together and their first opportunity to visit their son.
"Mr and Mrs Potter, welcome." Professor McGonagall smiled.
Brighid rolled her eyes. "Minerva, I think we know each other well enough to be on first name terms."
"Being as we're related, yes, Brighid, I agree with you." Minerva gave a smirk. "How are you both?"
"Tired. I've barely had a minute off my feet. The attacks are getting worse, as are the spells used." Brighid sighed.
"How is James?" Her husband, Harold, asked.
"Quiet. Brooding. He and Lily are much changed from their ordeal. Professor Potter is still in the Infirmary. He was hit by some sort of blood curse and only woke up yesterday."
"Professor Potter?" Harold frowned, before nodding in remembrance. "The new Defence teacher, isn't he? I remember James mentioning a strange theory of Sirius'…"
"That Harry Potter is in fact James and Lily's son from the future?" Minerva asked. At Harold's nod, she continued. "He's been spreading that since the man arrived. Very dramatic, but he checked out."
"Who is he?"
"British, but studied in Canada. Parents murdered by You Know Who. Father was Muggle-born, mother was pureblood. And apparently his mother was a redhead." She grinned wickedly at Brighid. "It must be the name. His young assistant who he is quite enamoured with is also a redhead."
Harold laughed. "It's only redheads who can handle a Potter's temper and brooding ability."
"Then you had better hope young Miss Evans decides to change her mind about your son, though she seems to have done so partly anyway." Minerva explained. "Let's go to my office, you can talk with your son there."
"No, no, first I'd like to speak with the young man who saved our son and young Lily's life." Brighid insisted.
"Very well." Minerva began walking with them to the Infirmary. On the way, she caught sight of a second-year Gryffindor. "Mr Orenda, would you be good enough to locate James Potter and inform him that his parents are here to see him in my office. Or, if you can't find him in the tower, inform Mr Black, Mr Lupin and Mr Pettigrew and ask them to find him. If you see Miss Evans, mention it to her too."
"Yes, professor." The young boy scooted off.
"I can't guarantee that Professor Potter will be awake." Minerva explained. "He only woke up yesterday, and it has been four days since James and Lily were rescued."
"You said James had changed, how do you mean?" Brighid asked.
"He and Lily both. He uses odd turns of phrase, scolds others for bad language before 'ladies', opens doors… Old-fashioned, chivalrous things. Not that he wasn't polite, but it's as if he's from another century. Lily is the same – old-fashioned words, flirting, yet not in a swooning way, in a strong way, like a true witch of old."
"Since they got back?" Harold checked.
"Yes. Well, I guess they were a little like that at Hallowe'en, but they were in character then."
"Character?" Harold asked.
"Yes, there was a ball, don't you remember, Harold?" Brighid asked. "James asked us to send that Founder's costume we had in the…" Her voice trailed off as her eyes widened.
"Who did they go as?" Harold asked.
"Lord and Lady Gryffindor. Why?"
"There was a battle, wasn't there? Voldemort was there?"
"Yes. The strangest thing happened. Professor Potter seemed to be possessed, and shouted at Voldemort as though he was Slytherin. Claimed to be conduit, something about the line of Gryffindor outlasting that of Slytherin…"
Harold gasped. "We need to see James as soon as possible after we've spoken to this professor."
Minerva nodded. "Here we are. The Infirmary."
They entered in silence, conscious of the possibility that the professor was sleeping.
What they found was a picture.
Miss Westley sat on the end of Harry's bed, legs crossed, laughing care-freely. Harry was sat up, smirking at whatever he had just said. What made the picture was the ball of light above his hands. As he twisted his hands, it morphed into a rose.
"Nearly as pretty as you." He smiled at Ginny.
"But is it as prickly?" She grinned in reply.
He seemed to muse for a moment. "I really don't know. Well, then, I'll have to change it." Another flick of its wrists and it resembled a phoenix, flying with sparkling tail-feathers.
"Very nice. Now, Mr Potter, you going to stop with the magic? Madam Pomfrey'll have my hide if she knew I was letting you do magic again, let alone wandless."
"Where is my wand?"
"In your trunk, it reappeared there when you dropped it in the battle. What were you thinking, getting in the way of an Ice Blood Curse? A minute or two longer and the pain would have killed you, Harry, you know that!" Ginny scowled.
"I didn't get in the way of the curse deliberately, Gin! Just like neither of us walked up to Death Eaters in battle and said, 'Please curse me with something you think can drive us insane until we die'! It wasn't my fault!"
Ginny looked down, mollified. "I know, I know. I just… I worry, okay? We're so much stronger, and we can fight off that many more curses that it's hard to reconcile to being vulnerable to something so…"
"Pedestrian." Ginny sighed.
Holding his hands out, Harry caught hers and pulled her towards him, holding her close in his arms.
"I won't let anything happen to you, Gin, you know that." Harry sighed. "And if you hadn't got to that bastard first, you know I'd've got him for you. Along with your charming older brothers."
"Nah, my brothers were too worried about shagging their girlfriends after the battle that they never really thought about it."
"I know." Harry sighed. "Ron got in so much trouble with Hermione for being out drinking… why, I had to resort to you as my drinking partner!"
"I know. I always wondered why they let me drink there." She frowned.
"Barman didn't give a rat's arse how old you were so long as you paid in real money." Harry shrugged.
She nodded. "Do you know how horrible it was, having to wait here while you went to rescue them?"
"Ginny, you're the second or third-strongest person in this school. With half of us on a rescue mission, we needed you here in case someone got wind of Hogwarts being without its full compliment."
Ginny nodded. "I know. And if I'd been more careful in the first battle, I wouldn't have been injured, and I would have been able to go."
"Besides, if I'd been killed, someone had to take the news back to your mum."
"You wanted me dead too?" Ginny asked, mocking him.
"Well, who else better to spend death with?"
"That's the confusing bit." Harry explained. "Technically they're not dead for another three or four years. So, if I died in this time, would they be there?"
Minerva and the Potters gasped.
Harry and Ginny turned to look and both paled.
Harry's reaction summed up the situation in one word.
"Um, Sirius?" A small second-year ventured in the common room.
Sirius turned in surprise to look at the chestnut-haired boy, but smiled at him. "Yep?"
"Professor McGonagall sent me to find James Potter, but I couldn't. So she sent me to tell you." Kieran Orenda explained.
"Tell me what?" Sirius asked with a light grin. The boy was clearly nervous at speaking to a seventh-year, a Marauder at that.
"James Potter's parents are here to see him in her office. She thought you might know where he is. And she said something about Lily Evans too." Orenda explained more fully.
"Ah, that's great. Thanks, Kieran. I'll find James." He grinned at the boy who scurried off.
'About time they got here,' Sirius thought. 'They must've been so snowed under with work…'
"Moony, Wormtail!" Sirius called as the two entered the common room. "Prongs' parents are in Minnie's office. Any idea where he is?"
"No." Remus replied. "But you might try the Heads' rooms. He seems to spend a lot more time in there now."
"Good point. Remember the password?"
Remus rolled his eyes. "Come on then." He informed him, dragging his friend from the common room.
A few minutes later, they were stood at the entrance to Lily and James' rooms.
"James decided on a new password, didn't he?" Remus frowned, trying to remember. "Fortune favours the bold."
The picture covering the entrance – that of a man and woman who were fairly obvious courting – swung open as the man murmured, "That it does, lad, that it does."
The others walked in.
"Prongs!" Sirius yelled. "Lilykins!"
"Call me Lilykins again, Sirius Black, and I will gut you." Lily informed him from the doorway to her room.
"Good evening, fair Miss Evans. Pray tell, is our good friend Sir Prongs in?" Sirius gave an overly extravagant bow that was clearly aimed at taking the piss out of James' strange old ways of speaking.
"You can try his room." She shrugged, flopping onto one of the large armchairs in front of the fire of the Head's sitting room.
Sirius did just that, throwing open the door with a loud, "PRONGS!"
Lily paled as he did, because directly in her line of sight (she was sitting at angle and so could see beyond Sirius) was a very naked James Potter. She bit her lip and gripped the arm of the chair hard as her eyes roved over his body.
James (fortunately) didn't seem to notice Lily's gaze and looked at Sirius sharply.
"Ever heard of knocking, mate?"
"Never mind that. Your parents are in old McGonagall's office." Sirius shrugged.
"Thanks a lot. Now turn around and let me get dressed in peace."
"We shared a dorm for six years, James, there's not much of you that can shock me." Sirius replied. Then came a "Whoa!"
"Yes, you see, I had a slight change on Hallowe'en. Now let me get dressed." James snapped.
Lily had craned her head for a look at whatever Sirius had found so shocking to no avail.
Sirius just left and closed the door, his face confused.
Lily picked up a book, trying her best not to look like she had been spying on James Potter. All the while thinking, 'I do not fancy him, I do not fancy him, I do not fancy him…'
However, three minutes later when he walked out in jeans, shirt and open casual robes (these a scarlet to set off the black jeans and shirt), it was all she could do not to jump him.
"You coming, Lily?" James asked.
"What?" Lily looked surprised.
James gave her a smile. "I think my parents would like to meet you, Miss Evans. Particularly after you had that dagger."
McGonagall was staring at Harry and Ginny in shock and confusion.
"What on Earth is going on?" She demanded.
Harry gave a weak grin. "Umm, mass hallucination?"
By now, all three had their wands trained on the two time-travellers.
"You will tell us what's going on, and you will tell us now." Harold ordered them.
"Hey, James looks just like you." Harry stated, almost with surprise.
Brighid couldn't repress a grin as Ginny whacked her boyfriend upside the head.
"Honestly, Harry. We're being threatened by the deputy head and your favourite student's parents and all you can say is how they resemble each other. Honestly!"
"You sound just like Hermione." Harry informed her tartly.
"No I don't!"
"Take that back! I can not sound like someone who's busy making the best with two backs with my brother!"
"'Beast with two backs'? Honestly, Ginny, where do you get these things from?" Harry asked, surprised. "Besides, isn't she pregnant again?"
Ginny rolled her eyes. "Harry, when some women are pregnant, their hormones get to the point where they're willing to shag anything with two legs and penis."
Harry pulled a face that reminded Harold of the time he'd introduced his son to the birds and the bees (James was still in the 'girls are yucky' stage at the time). "I really didn't need to know that."
"Yes you did." Ginny smirked at him. "Because I'll guarantee that's what'll happen to me when you get me pregnant."
By this point, the three with wands were just staring at them, confused and bewildered by the bizarre pair in front of them.
Minerva groaned. "They sound like James and Lily on a good day."
Harold and Brighid shot her a suspicious look.
"I read it in a book. People like me get that way during pregnancy. Not to mention the family history."
This startled him into speech. "Ginny, if there's one thing I don't want to think of, it's your parents doing the dirty."
"Now who's the one with weird phrases? 'Doing the dirty', honestly." Ginny smirked. "It's just making love. Besides, I can think of a worse image."
Harry paled further. "Don't say it. Please don't say what I think you're going to!"
"Well, I was going to say your parents. But it could be your grandparents. Or, considering the bets about our old headmaster and deputy head…"
Harry shot a barely concealed glance at McGonagall and the Potters before grimacing. "Ginny, that's disgusting! He was probably about seventy when she was born."
Ginny giggled. "He probably taught her Transfiguration."
"No, no, no! No dirty connotations! I know how your mind works, and you are not going to do the detention joke! Nor are you going to inflict it on my students when I'm teaching them again."
"Aww, Harry, the Marauder'll appreciate it."
"Yes, but then you'll make a comment about detention, and the whole school will hear about us shagging like bunnies."
"Well, it's better than the rumours that are going to start about what's going on in the Heads' bathroom."
"Excuse me!" Brighid cried.
Ginny coloured. "Erm…"
Harry groaned. "There's a pervy portrait in there, according to Lily and James. Merpeople." He groaned. "Mediterranean ones at that. Considering the fact that the bets are coming on even more quickly about when Lily and James will get together, we suspect it will be soon."
"Professor Potter, considering you and Miss Westley have attempted to lead us from the point in question, I would like to reiterate our earlier inquiry in easier terms. What do you mean by 'this time' and your parents dying in three or four years' time?" McGonagall demanded.
Harry looked at Ginny. She sighed and gave a nod.
"How do you mean?"
"Ginny and I are from the future."
In McGonagall's office, the Marauders and Lily were getting bored.
"It's been ten minutes already. What's taking so long?" Sirius whined.
James rolled his eyes. "It's possible they wanted to see Professor Potter, considering he saved our lives. Maybe it's just taking a little longer."
"You don't have to stay, you know, Padfoot." James informed him. "We'll be fine without you."
"And miss this golden opportunity? I think not."
"What 'golden opportunity'?" Lily asked, suspicious.
"To embarrass you both, of course. Like about what really happens in that bathroom of yours…"
"Sirius Black, you will not mention anything about what goes on in our bathroom!" Lily yelled.
"So something does go on, does it?" Sirius smirked.
"You dare, Padfoot, and I'll string you up by your balls."
"Nice, Prongs, really nice." Remus winced.
James grinned. "I thought so."
"From the future. About twenty-two years to be exact." Harry replied. "Dumbledore realised he hadn't had a teacher, made the connection to my name and sent me on my merry way. Then he sent Ginny."
McGonagall stared. "So all this information – about your friends and family… is from the future?"
"Yep. Also, we think this is the reason you suspected us of hiding in broom cupboards in my seventh-year." Harry grinned at her cheerfully.
"You attended Hogwarts." Harold Potter stated.
"Naturally. Name was down since I was born." Harry grinned. "At least, that's what Hagrid said. Besides, we were here in the natural timeline anyway, so we were supposed to go back…"
"Don't think about it too much, Harry." Ginny advised. "You'll just give yourself a headache."
"Thanks a lot." Harry commented dryly.
"You're welcome." Ginny grinned cheerfully.
"So, what did you come here for originally?" Harry asked.
Brighid looked at him and laughed. "We came to thank you for saving our son's life. So thank you."
"You're welcome. Can't have Voldemort killing people when it isn't their time yet, can we?" Harry gave a grim smile.
Ginny poked him in the ribs. "No thinking about that part of the future, remember? Although we technically can't change it anyway because this has already happened…"
McGonagall groaned. "I hate time-travel. The paradoxes are too confusing."
Harry grinned at her. "That's what I think. So I try not to think about it."
Brighid and Harold gave him a careful look. Then McGonagall considered her watch.
"Goodness, we've been here far longer than I anticipated. James and the others will be waiting in my office, and if the Marauders get bored, I dread to think what state it will be in."
"We will be speaking to you later." Harold promised Harry and Ginny.
"I look forward to it!" Harry responded cheerfully.
As the three left, they heard Madam Pomfrey.
"Get off his bed this instant!"
The door to McGonagall's office opened.
"Ah, finally!" Sirius cried. "You're late!"
"No, Mr Black, you are merely early." McGonagall informed him tartly. "Mr and Mrs Potter wanted to thank Professor Potter first and we got caught into conversation with them."
"How disturbed are you, on a scale of one to ten?" Remus asked, interested.
"Remus!" Brighid cried, shocked but laughing.
"Well, I woke up last time in the hospital wing to hear them flirting. It was disturbing." Remus informed them, unapologetically.
The group descended into conversation, but after a while, Brighid and Harold requested some time alone with James and Lily.
"All right, James, what happened during the fight on Hallowe'en?" Harold asked.
James reiterated the fight, including the strange protective qualities of his costume and the professor's yelling about the line of Gryffindor.
"But what did he mean, line of Gryffindor?"
"You know, James. Our 'family secret'."
"You only said we were descended from someone famous." James countered. "You never said who."
"Gryffindor. The Potters are the 'heirs' of Gryffindor."
Something triggered in James' mind. "Lily… When we were there, in the Lightning Cage, Lily said something strange."
Lily frowned. "What?"
"Almost prophecy-like. It went something about thrice-defied…"
Lily's eyes clouded again, sparkling with power. "Thrice-defied, he who flies from death shall destroy his adversaries… But the line of Gryffindor will outlast his foe's…"
James sighed. "That was it. Guess that means that Voldemort will be killed some day. Though I've never heard of anyone who thrice-defied him…"
"James, you and Lily have already done it once."
The pair blinked as realisation kicked in. "What does that mean?"
"I don't know, love." Brighid pulled her son into a hug. "I don't know. But you'll be fine. I promise. Minerva said you were subjected to a Memorlive."
"Dear Merlin… The last time they kidnapped you…"
"Mum, I'm fine. I promise you. It's nothing I haven't lived through before. Besides, it's been two weeks." James shrugged. "I was more worried about Lily."
"I'm fine." Lily responded automatically.
"So the memory you relived wasn't the one where Lucius Malfoy nearly raped you?" James' voice was sarcastic. "Lily, we both know that if we hadn't escaped, old Voldemort would've let him finish the job."
In seconds, Lily found herself in James's mother's arms. "You poor, poor girl. Those Death Eaters…"
Lily shot a questioning look at James.
"Mum's a Healer at St. Mungo's. She specialises in victims of violence. Unfortunately, she has far too much work nowadays."
Lily nodded. "I'm… I'm fine."
James had promised never to mention it, at her insistence, but she did not feel as bothered as she should have been by the revelation.
"So," Brighid looked at them both, "any idea where my ceremonial dagger went?"
Harry laid in bed, Ginny snuggled in beside him once more (they were on the look out for Madam Pomfrey).
"So, what are you going to tell them?"
"Sirius is right?" Harry joked.
"How about this?" A voice spoke from the doorway. They turned to see Harold and Brighid there once more. Harold was looking at the ring on Harry's finger accusingly.
"Harold, Brighid, I'm your grandson." The man looked dark.
Harry gulped. "Erm…"
A/N: So? What do you think? Suggestions for future chapters are more than welcome, and Lily and James will probably get together in the next two or three chapters. Also, I do not think this story will go above thirty chapters, if that. I'm not sure how to keep going.
Anyway my views on HBP…
SPOILERS ALERT! I'll give you a space…
Okay, that should be enough!
Harry/Ginny finally! Yay! Even with Harry breaking up with her for 'some silly, noble reason' (that's a quote!), there's no doubt that he truly cares for her. Does he love her? Well, I think so.
I loved this book. It's now my favourite. I like that it was quite fast-paced and I loved the opening chapter. I guess younger readers won't enjoy it so much, but the books are becoming more aimed at 'tweenagers' and teenagers than young children.
The idea of horcruxes and revelations of Voldemort's past were extremely interesting. Even more so, all those people who say Voldemort would've been fine if he was brought up in a happy home? WRONG! He wasn't abused at the orphanage. He had a sense of self-inflated importance and terrified other children! Although I do like the idea that he was the one who caused the jinx on the DADA position. I do have to agree with the person who 'shame Dumbledore set the cabinet on fire and not Tom'. Snigger.
Dumbledore died! Argh! I don't suppose we can all hope for a… 'In death I will become even more powerful than you can imagine.' (Or words to that effect) can we?
And Snape… Ooh! Evil, evil, evil! Okay, maybe there's something else there, but a guy who calls himself a prince? He's gotta have a self-inflated sense of importance. Although it's amusing that it wasn't until he was out of the room and only words written in a book that Harry finally learnt something from him. It is interesting to realise that one of his grievances against James was that he used his own spells against them. But then it's Snape's fault for letting him see them. I really don't like him.
Interesting ending. And that phoenix thing from Dumbledore's grave was also interesting.
Anyway, very long A/N, but I had to get that off my chest!
Hope you enjoy, hope I haven't disappointed anyone, and hope I get that job I had an interview for the other day! (I need to save some money for uni, because by our calculations, I'm going to be in debt until the time I'm thirty-five. And that doesn't count a mortgage! Maybe I can make it big… If you all bought my book…)
Anyway, my dad's nagging (I should be rewriting my novel, not fanfiction – I finished chapter 6 this morning) so I'll go and post this!
Happy summer and HBP-reading!
Lol, Tanydwr (who is going to re-read HBP in the next few weeks)