AN - I don't own Harry Potter. Hope you like the story though!
How Peter Was Discovered.
"Oh, he's adorable!" Hestia Jones was cooing over Harry, who was quite happy gurgling in his cot. Lily watched him fondly as James was over the other side of the room laughing with Sirius and Remus about some prank they'd pulled back in the old days.
It was the spring of 1981 and the Potters were currently attending an Order meeting. Lily and James had been unable to find a babysitter so they had had to bring Harry with them. Nobody seemed to mind, apart from Severus, Lily saw sadly. He glared at James and even harder at Harry although his expression appeared to soften when he met Harry's eyes, and a fleeting look of regret swept over his face. James, of course, simply sneered at him and turned back to his conversation with his friends and Lily mentally cursed. She was trying to improve her relationship with Severus but James could not seem to let go of his grudge with him, although it appeared Severus couldn't either, going by the glare he was currently sending towards James' back.
"Can we sit down, and start the meeting, please." Albus called over the din of the noisy chatter from the Order members, which they slowly did with their conversations tapering off as everyone made themselves comfortable.
"I am afraid I have some tragic news to report." Albus said somewhat wearily. "Many of you will have noticed that Thomas Rowland is no longer with us. Unfortunately, his position as a Death Eater was compromised and his body was returned to us late last night." There was a quiet sob at this from somewhere in the room, and Peter flinched.
Thoughts were running through his mind about Thomas Rowland, as Peter had been at the Death Eater meeting last night where the discovery of Thomas had happened. In fact, Peter had been the one to announce the Order spy, and the smile on the Dark Lord's face had been nothing less than positively diabolical, terrifying most Death Eaters there. Rowland had been dragged forward and thrown at the Dark Lord's feet, who had then proceeded to torture him in a manner which had most of the Death Eaters throwing up afterwards. And Dumbledore had talked about a body? They had only given back his head. Peter flinched again, trying unsuccessfully not to remember the torture and unconsciously rubbed his left forearm.
"Expelliarmus!" came a sudden shout, and Peter dimly wondered who it was meant for before he felt his wand soaring out of its holster on his hip. His reflexes were sharp, and he managed to avoid the second curse by moving his body upwards quickly, but the third one – "Incarcerous!" was aimed for just above his bulk, clipping him. Immediately, ropes unfurled around him and tied him tightly to the chair, and it was only then he could hear the shouts of confusion, most notably from James and Sirius.
"Moody, what the hell do you think you're doing?" shrieked Lily. Other noises of bewilderment and perplexity circled the air in the room, and it was only by casting "Sonorus" on himself and shouting "He's a bloody Death Eater!" that Moody was able to make himself heard. The room immediately quietened. Moody took the spell off himself, and Albus asked him quietly, "What proof do you have of this, Alastor?"
"He was rubbing his arm," Moody grunted, and before he could be interrupted, he carried on with, "his left forearm." A silence fell, until Snape stepped forwards and quickly cast a spell that tore Peter's sleeve off. There was nothing there.
Murmurs broke out again, wondering if Mad-Eye was losing it, but he whirled around quickly, and barked out his assurances that he was most definitely not going mad.
He spun back round, and motioned to Albus to come closer. As he did so, he informed the room that "there's some type of concealing spell on Pettigrew's arm. Probably his work." Albus nodded, moving his wand in a complicated type of circle around Peter's arm, until it glowed a noxious green colour and disappeared, leaving a perfectly black Dark Mark visible.
There was an awful sort of silence hanging, and Peter looked around fearfully. Several people there were simply staring at him with shock and other with anger. Moody looked as if he were about to pull out his wand and curse him to death, although, to be honest, that was how he normally looked. But, turning to James, Sirius and Remus, he physically winced. None of them were looking at him with anger, just disappointment and betrayal. James was the first to speak.
"Peter? No. You can't be. You're not really..." James couldn't finish the sentence, but Sirius took over for him.
That figured, Peter thought bitterly. Sirius nearly got both of them expelled in fifth year, but they were still as close as brothers. Although, Peter noticed somewhat sadly, Sirius was also looking rather shell-shocked and dismayed. "A Death Eater?" Sirius finished faintly. They both looked at Peter expectantly as he would suddenly stand up and laugh it off as a joke - "Don't worry, guys! This tattoo is a fake, and I haven't been selling all your secrets to Voldemort. Of course not!" He couldn't answer, but just looked down at the floor.
"But, why?" Remus asked, brokenly
It seemed this was enough to break the silence Peter was hanging onto, and his temper flared up. "Why, Remus? How about why not? How about you three take some fucking credit as well? Hmm?" The bitterness was finally pouring out after so many years of being kept inside. "You three continually ignored me, even though I was supposed to be your fucking friend! You treated me like some kind of dog! It was always 'Peter, do this; Peter, do that!' he mimicked in a high-pitched voice. "Even after the incident in fifth year," Snape, Remus and Sirius all flinched, "you barely spoke to me. Well, except for Sirius. But that was because he fucking needed me then as a friend since he had nobody else, so, of course, I became his only one because I actually felt wanted for the first time at school! And then, after you all kissed and made up, you fucking ignored me again! Apart from the odd bits of conversation, that is. I was like some kind of outsider in our own dorm room." Peter stopped, panting. It felt...good. Good to get all this anger out. Good like he hadn't felt in years. Perhaps it was because he didn't have to worry anymore about anyone finding out about his other life.
"Well, apart from you, Lily," he commented and nodded in her direction. "You were always nice to me, even when you were in a piss with James." She nodded faintly, perhaps remembering the conversations in which she'd tried to convince him that he was needed and helping him with his homework, and the others where she'd been complaining about "that bastard Potter."
"So," he carried on, "was it any wonder why I went to the Dark Lord? He treated me as if I was an actual person. Not just a bloody tagalong! Granted, the crucios weren't exactly an inspiring part but I suppose you could put the blame for those on to you too – if you had treated me like a real friend, I wouldn't have had to join the Dark Lord." He slumped in the chair, his tirade finished and waited to see the reaction.
No-one spoke for a good few minutes, but then Sirius stood and walked jerkily over to him. His face was blank, although Peter thought he could see a small flicker of emotion in his eyes, but what was it? He soon realised as Sirius started punching him. Unsurprisingly, nobody seemed to want to pull Sirius off Peter, until there was a crack of his nose bone, and then James stood up and gently tried to pull Sirius off Peter. It didn't work, and eventually Hagrid moved over to help get Sirius away. Sirius was still struggling, though, and was attempting to break free from his captors in order to continue beating up Peter, but they were both too strong. He subsided finally when it became clear he would be unable to get free, and started speaking.
"You utter bastard!" he spat. "At least be grateful we even gave you that much of our friendship!" Peter flinched again. "You were always the tagalong, Peter. Or should it be Wormtail, like the complete rat you are? We should have known when you got your form!" And having finished his piece, he swung around and stormed out of the room. There was perfect silence until the faint sound of an Apparition crack was heard, which appeared to jolt most of the Order out of their shock.
"Well," Albus cleared his throat with a sad expression on his face. "Well. Auror Shacklebolt, would you be able to take Mr Pettigrew in for questioning now?"
The Auror in question nodded with a hard look on his face, and nobody there doubted that Peter would arrive at the Ministry with a few more injuries than he was currently sporting now, especially since he would not be able to defend himself with the magic-suppressing handcuffs that Shacklebolt had just snapped onto his wrists.
"Kinsgley?" Remus called across the room, still sitting. "He's an Animagus. A rat." The Auror nodded and immediately cast a prevention of the Animagus form on the handcuffs, and roughly shoved Peter to get him moving.
"Oh my God!" Lily suddenly whimpered.
"What is it, sweetheart?" James asked worriedly.
"We were planning on making him our Secret Keeper. He would have given us to Voldemort!" Lily gasped out. "He would have killed us. And Harry," nearly sobbing. "He would have killed Harry!"
James' face paled as he realised his wife was right. If Moody hadn't been so paranoid, and seen the traitor rubbing his arm, the Fidelius would have gone up with Peter as the Secret Keeper who would have most likely have given them straight to Voldemort. Something ached in him to run forward and murder the bastard that was leaving the room and he nearly did, but he held Lily as she hugged him tightly, and feeling eyes on him, looked up.
Snape was staring at him, with an unidentifiable look on his face, which softened slightly when he glanced at Lily, and James finally understood part of why Sniv-Severus hated him so much. He hesitated, and then nodded at the man standing across the room, who simply raised an eyebrow, shot a fleeting look at Lily and then inclined his head towards him. The message was clear; he was only doing this for Lily. James nodded again, silently answering the unspoken question; can you live with that? And on seeing this, Snape strode forwards, drawing his wand and shot a quick unidentifiable spell at Peter as he left the room, managing to slip it between the door and the Auror who was guarding him, hitting Peter on the arm. He gasped and collapsed in the arms of the Auror, and started shaking with small whimpers escaping him.
"Severus!" Albus exclaimed. "You have not killed him, have you?"
"Death's too good for him." Snape sneered. "I merely cursed him with uncontrollable nightmares. Every night. For the rest of his life." He left the room before anyone had a chance to respond to his curse. James simply shrugged as Albus looked at him and picked up Harry, putting him on Remus' lap who was still sitting and staring off into space, but the small boy on his lap startled him, and he gently grabbed Harry to stop him falling off. He looked up at James with slight desperation in his eyes, who understood and leant down, placing his arm around Remus' shoulder, still with Lily clinging to him and Harry on Remus' lap, gurgling happily.
"How could he, James? We weren't as bad as that, were we?" Remus asked brokenly. "We didn't really behave like that that to him?"
"I don't think so. I think he was just remembering all the bad things we did to him." James answered. "And not the good things." He bowed his head, with a small tear falling down his cheek in remembrance for a lost friend.
AN – I realise that Snape probably wouldn't have been at Order meetings in order to not compromise his Death Eater status, but he kinda had to for the purposes of this fic. So, what do you think? Please tell me in a review, like the nice, kind people you are. I wasn't entirely sure about the ending but I couldn't think of how else to write it.