Chapter Thirteen: After
May 1st 2017
It was a cool, dark sleep. Lucy felt too tired to open her eyes. She could lay on that cloud forever. Asleep preferably.
But she forced her eyes open at the sound of worried voices from her bedside. They both sounded familiar, achingly so. Her vision was blurry for her glasses were gone, but there was no mistaking the tall outline of her father and the bright red hair that could be seen over the curtain. Lucy tried to speak but it came out as a harsh choking sound. There was a creaking sound from the other side of the curtain. A loud snore from the bed next to her caught Lucy's attention.
Was Ollie okay? Would he forgive her for getting him into that mess?
She turned her head towards the snoring, squinting her eyes to try and see more clearly. It was a vain effort; the curtain was drawn on that side to. Lucy exhaled through her nose and rolled onto her back, noticing the slight ache in her shoulders that was slowly moving down the rest of her body.
"What the hell was she doing out there to begin with?" That was Lucy's dad, he only swore when he was really upset and that itself was incredibly rare. Lucy buried herself under the blankets. She felt the familiar tingling in her nose and sneezed loudly. There was a loud scuffling sound and Lucy's dad burst in, Lucy sat up quickly as he pulled her into a hug, she winced as her ribs and shoulders protested. "Audrey she's awake." Her father released her and took a seat in the chair next to Lucy's bed and Lucy's mother burst in and hugged Lucy also.
"Oh, Lucy." Her mum planted a kiss on her forehead. "We're so glad you're okay."
Lucy peered over her mum's shoulder to find elderly Madam Pomfrey looking at them with a soft look then switching quickly to one of complete distain as a familiar voice rang through the ward.
"You still have these damn curtains? That tells me you can't afford new ones, I set those on fire seventy years ago." It was loud, rumbling, and seemed to drip sarcasm with each word. Which raised a new question, why was Gramps even here?
"I told him to watch it," Lucy's mum muttered as she pulled away from Lucy.
"Drey, he can't help himself, you know that."
"I know." Lucy's mum smiled again, Lucy thought her mother had a pretty smile. She turned her attention back to Lucy, still smiling and spoke, "You're Grandfather tagged along for some reason, he said he wanted to see his old stomping grounds." Her father coughed. "I think he wanted to do that before the memorial service tomorrow, it was too crowded last year and he may be feeling sentimental."
"Sentimental?" Lucy's dad said flatly.
"It could happen."
Lucy reached over for her glasses and placed them on her face. "Is Ollie okay? What about Waldrope and Sullivan?" She took a deep breath before continuing, "And there was another man who wore a gold mask!"
Lucy's mum's eyebrows shot up, her eyes wide, and her mouth tightening into a thin line.
"Professor Sullivan," Her father corrected as he leaned back in his chair, looking at his wife with concern. "Waldrope has been arrested and is waiting for the aurors to come and take him to a holding cell to stand trial. Your friend is fine. He was sleeping last time I checked." There was another loud snore from the other side of the curtains. "Still is apparently." Lucy's dad's mood immediately became sterner and Lucy just knew a lecture was coming to change the subject from what Lucy really wanted to know. "Now, what were you both thinking? You could have been killed I hope you know just how lucky you are. I knew homeschooling was a good idea-"
There was a shrill voice from the other end of the hospital wing. "Where is he?" Lucy's mum got up and poked her head out for a look. Lucy got out of bed and followed ignoring the throbbing in her limbs and managing to avoid her dad's attempts to put her back and get back to resting. It was a woman with gray hair wearing black and white robes.
Ollie's voice was tired sounded as he croaked, "Franny?"
"Ollie!" The woman ran over to Ollie's bed. "Your parents were held up in the international portkey station and they're not sure when they'll be here. Your grandparents sent me to keep you company." She swept the curtains aside and Lucy found herself looking at this woman. "Is this the friend you told me about?"
"Yeah, Franny this is Lucy. Lucy this is Franny, she's my-"
"Soon to be retired Nanny, I'm also his grandparents housekeeper, I watched him grow up. Which included watching him chew on his grandfather's leather shoes." Ollie's face went pink and he looked pointedly in the other direction. Lucy giggled as she dodged another one of her father's attempts to deposit her back in her own section of the wing. Lucy went back to bed on her own peeling back the curtain between her and Ollie's beds.
"Ollie, Lucy! I have your homework!" Lucy sat up again as Molly walked in with a large pile of books in her arms that she deposited on the table next to Lucy's bed while Ollie groaned and tried to play dead. At the sight of the homework, Lucy's dad looked rather excited. Molly walked over and placed his books on his table with a loud enough bang to awaken the dead. Ollie shot up and glared at her. Molly ignored him and sat down on the edge of Lucy's bed. "Hey squirt." She gave Lucy a one armed hug. "Glad you're okay."
Lucy's dad leaned over and looked at the homework Molly had brought in, "You know I could help you with this."
"Dad, I'm top of the class, I really don't think I need the help."
"I don't think we spend enough time together as a family."
"Most families go to the beach when they want to spend time together and you want to bond over homework?"
Lucy's mum gave Lucy a 'Don't be a wise arse and humor your father' look.
Lucy smiled brightly, "Sure, why not?"
Ollie looked on wistfully as Lucy cracked open her book and she and her dad began to layout the essay. Though Lucy's mind was whirring with other, seemingly more important topics.
'Who is Amon? Is he going to come back and finish me and Ollie off?'
Gregory Sullivan was not an exceptionally powerful wizard by any stretch of the imagination. To be frank, truly powerful witches and wizards scared him to death. In a society based in blood status and magical power, both in one person was enough to make him and many other Muggle-borns very scared, especially after the war. Absolute power corrupts absolutely in the muggle world, in the magical world it did much more. Absolute power corrupts absolutely; absolute magical power could very easily drive one mad or completely power-hungry. So the saying went.
He rubbed his shoulder where Amon's spell had stuck, sighing in defeat. His boss was not going to be pleased about those children getting in danger. Not in the least. At least he could have a brief respite in his office and start another journal entry. Writing was his therapy; it helped him cope with everything even after all these years. Sullivan's classroom was empty and that was a small relief. Headmistress McGonagall was a very kind woman when it was required. He opened the door to his office and found the misty figure of a falcon patronus standing on his table next to his cold cup of coffee.
"Not you again!"
"Sullivan, that was very disappointing." The falcon said, "Now, have a seat we have much to discuss."
That bloody bird had gotten him into this mess. Sullivan was now under the impression he was stuck with it forever.
"Like what? When I will finally be free of you and your burdensome quest? I'd like to start with that."
"You are free when I deem it so!" The falcon screeched and spread its wings and tapped its talons on the desk. Even through it was a patronus, the talons still made a loud noise that sent a chill up Sullivan's spine. "A life for a life Sullivan, I saved your life now you owe it to me in turn."
Sullivan felt the blood in his veins begin to boil to remind him of the bond of a life preserved. Clutching his arms, Sullivan fell to his knees with a thump on the stone floor and a cry of pain.
It had never been his intention to end up in the debt of a powerful warlock.
"Until your debt of blood is paid, you will serve!"
Sullivan's physical agony grew in intensity with each word the falcon spoke. His forehead touched the floor as he grinded his teeth together, not wanting to give this man the satisfaction of hearing more of his pained cries.
"So mote it be!"
The intense pressure and burning pain let up with those final words, though Sullivan stayed on the floor to collect himself, the tip on his nose touching the cold stone.
"I will do better, Old One, this I swear."
The country castle was imposing with its high towers and sturdy walls. It was a true fortress; safe from the praying eyes of muggles and many wizards thought this place was lost many years ago. Those who knew of its continued existence were those with shady leanings who sold and dealt items of questionable legality, but this night, the castle was empty and in the highest tower a meeting was taking place by candlelight. Each face was half hidden in the shadows as they sat at the long table.
The door opened to reveal a figure holding a green amulet in his hand to light his way, the light bouncing off his gold mask. The old man at the head of the table spoke, light bouncing off his glasses. "You have it this time?"
"Obviously." The woman on sitting to his right said flipping her inky black hair over her shoulder. "He's holding it is he not?"
There was soft laughter from the others sitting at the table.
The man in the gold mask smiled his crooked smile and held it higher for all to see. "Ladies and gentlemen, I believe we have made our first step and I have information that may also help us in due time." His smile faded, "Audrey Causey has at least one child." The table grew silent. "A first year girl and a boy about her age came upon Waldrope and I's operation in the forest. The girl looked just like Causey, and was just as nosy. She and her friend managed to escape me by luck alone. Waldrope has been captured."
The man at the head of the table spoke first, "That is interesting."
A woman at the far end of the table spoke, "What if Waldrope talks? We can't afford to draw the complete attention of the Ministry, at least not at this stage!"
"We will cross that bridge when we get to it, besides, our agents within the Ministry of Magic have their instructions on how to handle our loose ends. A man commiting suicide while awaiting trial is not unheard of. Amon, thank you for that report." The Faceless nodded in took a seat next to the dark-haired woman. "Now, where can we find the next one?"
"I'm taking care of that sir," The woman said with a smile. "It may take some time but it will be done."
"Though I will require more help from, Amon. He's the best suited for these retrieval missions, especially if our enemies will be on the move, which I'm sure they will be after this if the report on who the girl was is completely accurate."
"I have plenty of ideas to throw the Ministry and other groups off our trail." Amon adjusted his mask and grinned as he leaned back in his chair. "The Audrey problem is manageable at present. She will not do anything without having more information, she's too smart to jump straight into a fight if she doesn't know what it is she is fighting for."
The man nodded, "You may proceed as you see fit. I leave those missions in your capable hands. Our contacts in the Ministry should be able to help you when it is required."
The woman nodded in acknowledgement before speaking again, "Nicodemus, what about the girl?"
"If she managed to get away from Amon, I would like a chance to get to know her. I'm sure she's very talented, maybe she'll be of use to us in time."
Author's Note: Book Two has the possible title of Lucy Weasley and the Spyglass.
In which a character disappears,
Albus, Rose, and Scorpius come to Hogwarts,
Lucy and Ollie forge new friendships,
A journal tells tales,
The Reformation begins its rise in the public view.
I wanted to thank all of my readers and my reviewers for all of your support. I know I made some unusual decisions for the direction of this story, but I wanted to do something a little different. Not just a rehashing of Albus, James or Lily having an adventure. I may go back and do a little editing later on. Now I wish to dedicate this story to the graduating class of 2011, may we be able to find a decent job.
Anything you have seen in this fic is not owned by me, it is the property of J.K. Rowling.