"Step away from her Potter. You can't help her now." growled Snape at Harry.
"But we have to! We can't go." Harry cried at Snape. Tears had started to form in his eyes. He then realized there was a death mark above them.
"Calm down Potter, we are not leaving her! We just have to wait until the flames die down, just watch Potter." Snape said as he averted his eyes to Veronica who was still on fire. Harry watched in amazement as slowly her limbs started to turn into ash. Her skin was not burning, but just turning into ash right in front of his eyes. He then heard a cry of a baby. Snape had stepped forward as he pulled a crying baby from the ashes.
"We have to go to Saint Mongo's Hospital. Follow me Potter." Snape instructed him. He seemed calmed as he wrapped the baby in his cloak. Harry was confused. What just happened? They had stepped into the flames as they had arrived in a very busy hospital. There were many people around them. All had cuts and gashes somewhere on their bodies or some were screaming in agony for some reason. Harry had never seen people in this condition. Snape had stepped in front of a desk which sat a small plump witch who was typing furiously on her computer with a headset on her head.
"How may I help you?" she said.
"Yes I need an aging potion."
"Sorry we are busy now please wait in the waiting room." she said politely. Snape looked severe as he sneered at her
"I don't think we need your help anymore. Let's go Harry I know what to do." Snape said as he turned around back in the fire place. Harry followed. They were back in Hogwarts where many of the teachers were back fixing up their classrooms. They headed into the hospital wing. Snape had set down the child on a bed as Madame Pomfrey hurried over.
"What is wrong with this one?" she asked. She didn't seem to be happy to have a patient already when the school year hadn't even started.
"She needs some aging potion and please hurry. The faster we can age her, the better" he said as he looked down at the baby. "It will take about a week I believe until she will back to thirteen."
"Yes, right away Professor." said Madame Pomfrey as she got something out of her cupboard.
"Wait what happened to Veronica, where is she?" Harry asked as he looked confused.
"Please Potter I don't have time to answer your idiotic questions. Go to Minerva's office so she can keep an eye on you." he said coldly at Harry.
"No, I'm not leaving." Harry said defiantly as he put his foot down.
"Go Potter!" Snape roared.
"Potter don't make me-"
"What Professor? You can't do anything to me. I am staying."
"You're infuriating Potter." Snape replied irritably as he flicked his wand and Harry went soaring through the door. Harry stood up and tried to open the doors but it was locked. He had no choice, but go to Minerva's office. Madame Pomfrey had returned with a baby bottle filled with a red colored solution.
"Thank you Poppy." Snape said as he took the bottle. He then picked up the baby and cradled her as he stuck the bottle in her mouth. She drank it all. "That's a good girl." He said as he set her back down. She closed her eyes as she was fast asleep.
"She will probably be three when she wakes up." Snape told Poppy. "Make sure she has eight ounces of this a day. I will make a new batch tonight."
"Yes professor." said Madame Pomfrey as she put up the rails on the bed. Harry rushed into Minerva's office that he made her jump a little when he barged the door open.
"Minerva, I mean Professor, we were attacked by someone I couldn't see who. He said something like Avada Kadarva." Harry yelled.
"He said what?" asked Minerva as she started to grew pale.
"He said Avada Kadarva."
"I heard what you said Potter. Avada Kadarva is a forbidden curse. It kills people instantly. What happened, where's Miss. Kelly?"
"I don't know. She burst into flames and turned into ashes. Then Snape grabbed a baby from the ashes and asked for an aging potion from Madam Pomfrey." Harry informed her. He was still shaken from what had happened.
"Have you told Professor Dumbledore?"
"No Snape said for me to come to you so you could watch out for me." Harry felt angry. He was furious. She was asking him questions instead of doing something about it.
"Harry come with me, you can tell the story to Professor Dumbledore." she said as she got up and left without another word. They came to a gargoyle as she said the password and revealed stairs. Dumbledore and Snape were just climbing down them.
"I know Minerva what happened, Snape told me all about it. I think you should take Harry home now. Madame Pomfrey will take care of the baby." Dumbledore said as he came down the steps."
"No I'm not going anywhere. What happened to Veronica?" Harry yelled at him. He wanted answers, but no one would give him any.
"Harry I will tell you later, but you must go back home now." Dumbledore said calmly. He didn't understand thought Harry. Anger boiled inside him.
"I said it a thousand times already, I'm not going anywhere!" Harry said even louder. His fists were clenched. He wanted to hurt someone. Hot tears started to roll down his check. Then Minerva put her hand on Harry's shoulder.
"Harry we must go now. You can't do anything for her now." She said to him calmly. She sounded like she was about to cry. Harry pushed her hand away and stared at Dumbledore who's expression didn't change. Snape then came towards Harry and put his hand firmly on Harry's shoulder.
"We are going home Harry whether you like it or not." He sneered at him. Snape dragged harry to the nearest fire place as they went back home. When they got back Harry ran upstairs to his room and slammed the door. He then started to cry and he threw things around the room. Hedwig jumped awake from all the noise he made. He ripped his dresser open and threw clothes everywhere. Harry didn't care that he was making a mess. Then something caught his eye, and it made him stop. It was a photograph in black and white. It looked old. In the picture it looked like Minerva in her twenties with Dumbledore who didn't have a long beard or long hair, instead he had short locks of blond hair. Then siting between them was a small girl who looked like she was three or four with golden locks and light eyes like Dumbledore's. She was petting a phoenix who harry recognized was Fawkes She was laughing and clapping her hands. Minerva was smiling and had her arms wrapped around her. Dumbledore was beaming at her and kissed the little girl on her forehead. Was this their child? But how, she was with Snape not Dumbledore, which didn't make sense to Harry at all. That night they ate dinner in silence. Harry didn't touch his food.
"You should eat Harry. It wouldn't do Veronica any good if you starve yourself." Minerva said.
"Don't make him eat. He is old enough to decide whether he wants to starve to death." Snape said as a little smile appeared on his face. Minerva gave him a cold look, but didn't say anything. A few minutes later Minerva spoke again.
"Harry I know how you feel." she started to say, but Harry cut her off.
"No you don't. She saved my life and exploded into flames. I don't know whether she is dead or alive." Harry started to say. He then took out the picture he had found. "Here I found this. The only way you would know how I felt is if the people in the people exploded into flames like Veronica, and you didn't know whether they were alive." He said coldly. Minerva looked pale as she saw the picture. She stood up quickly as tears started to form in her eyes. She then ran out of the room. Harry could hear her start to cry as she ran up the stairs. Harry didn't care he was mad and furious at her. She had no right to cry, he did.
"That's her dead daughter you little brat!" spat Snape as he slammed his fist on the table. He then got up from the table and left Harry alone. Harry was right about the little girl, but he had no idea that the girl died. Now he felt badly about what he had said to her. He wanted to apologize, but he couldn't move. He started to cry again. He then thought of Veronica's dead crumpled body on the pavement. She had saved him, but was she dead like the little girl in the photograph.
The next morning was quiet. Harry went down to kitchen. He wanted to apologize to Minerva, but she wasn't there like she normally was. Snape was making breakfast as usual, but didn't look at Harry.
"I hope you're happy Potter." He jeered at Harry. Harry didn't reply. He already felt badly enough.
"She cried all night you know. She's finally asleep so don't bother her now." He said as he placed a bowl of cornflakes in front of Harry. Harry didn't feel like eating.
"Don't want to eat?" said Snape as he grabbed his magazine. "Fine then starve for all I care." He then pointed his wand to the bowl as it was then empty. Harry felt even worse. Snape then headed up stairs as he left Harry alone again. The day went on slowly. Minerva stayed in her bedroom as Snape was in his potion room preparing a new batch of aging potion. Whenever Harry heard a door open he would get out of bed to see if it was Minerva, but every time it was Snape who was stepping out to get another ingredient from the kitchen. Harry wanted to ask him what he was doing, but he knew Snape wouldn't tell him. Harry tried to sit and do his potion homework knowing Snape wouldn't let him off, but he couldn't concentrate. Veronica's crumpled body on the pavement as it burst into flames haunted his mind. Who was that cloaked figure he thought. He wanted to kill him whoever he was. He wanted to murder him for killing Veronica and laughing at the sight of her crumpled body. That night he couldn't sleep just like the night before. He then heard a small knock on his door and then it opened. It was Minerva. Her hair was tied up and her eyes were red from crying.
"Harry I'm going to Hogwarts, if you would like to come with me." She said. Her voice was shaky as she spoke. Harry got up quickly as he threw on some clothes. He then looked at her. He wanted to say sorry, but the words didn't come out.
"I know your sorry Harry, and I forgive you. You were hurt and angry for me not telling you how Veronica was, and I understand. I know you didn't know about my daughter and I wouldn't expect you to. Now let's go shall we." she said. She made a feeble smile, and Harry felt better. They went into the fireplace once more as they were in the Hospital wing. Dumbledore was there to greet them. Harry ran to the bed side that Snape had out the baby down. He then saw that it was a toddler now with spiky black hair and dark brown eyes were staring up at him. She smiled at him, and Harry knew it was Veronica; she was alive. Harry was over joyed.
"I'm sorry Harry, I didn't know you were coming, but I need to talk to Minerva alone. Please could you step outside for a moment?" Dumbledore asked. His blue eyes were gazing at Harry as they were sincere. Harry left unwillingly, but was ecstatic to know Veronica was still alive. Dumbledore locked the doors behind Harry, and Harry thought that was weird. Dumbledore walked towards Minerva as he made a chair appear from the tip of his wand.
"Please sit." He said as he indicated the chair behind her. Minerva sat in front of Veronica's bed and Dumbledore sat on the other side. She wondered what he had to say to her.
"Snape had sent me an owl about what Harry had told you at the table the night before." He started to say. "I want to apologize-"
"You don't have to do that Albus, it wasn't your fault."
"Now Minerva I wasn't apologizing for Harry's action, but for my own. You see, you may be furious with me which is the reason I put Veronica between us, but there is also another reason. Veronica is your daughter." He finished as he looked at Veronica. Minerva was stunned. She looked at Veronica and then back at Albus.
"You're joking!" she said in disbelief.
"I do not joke about things like this; she is your daughter."
"But she looks nothing like her. My daughter was hunted and killed by You-Know-Who and his death eaters. That's what you told me."
"Yes I did tell you that, but I did it for her sake and yours. I told Veronica to hide with my friends in China. She then transformed herself into an Asian looking girl to blend in so Voldemort wouldn't find her, but he did somehow. And they battled and he and his death eaters killed my friends and her, but do you remember when you were three months pregnant with her?" Minerva nodded her head, but was still speechless. "I found you in the Chamber of Secretes bleeding. You had a gash right over your womb. She was dying inside you and I had summoned Fawkes to me immediately. He healed you, but his tears mixed with Veronica's DNA making her part phoenix. I did not know it at the time until she was four and scraped her knee and started to cry. Her tears were phoenix tears and it healed her knee. The day that Voldemort killed her she was reborn. I erased her memory so Voldemort wouldn't know she was still alive, and I told you she had died so he would believe that she was dead. A fireman had brought her to an orphanage since she caught the house on fire when she died, and I have watched over her ever since. She was adopted by an American woman, and I knew she would be fine. She looks Asian right now because that's what she thinks she looks like which I was glad about because Voldemort wouldn't recognize her. I also made sure that her American mother would be able to adopt her so she would be far away from Brittan. I am sorry that I did not tell you before. I know you have been suffering over these years. I thought you should know now that Voldemort is not after her anymore." He stopped and saw that she was crying again.
"So she is alive. She is my daughter." Minerva had been able to get out.
"Naturally, she has your gift of transfiguration, and the ability to become an animagus. If she is my daughter like we thought, she has inherited my eagerness to learn and my phoenix patronus. I have watched her grow and prosper twice now and she is happy." Dumbledore said as he watched Veronica sleep. Minerva had then turned her attention to Veronica. Tears still rolled down her face. She then reached to stork Veronica's hair. She had her daughter back, and she was overwhelmed.
"Why had you kept this from me for so long?" she asked as she looked at Dumbledore.
"You had healed, and I didn't want to upset you again."
"I have never healed until now." she said to him a bit coldly.
"Well I'm sorry Minerva, I truly am." He said as he put his hand on hers. "I think we should call Harry back in though before he gets suspicious." Minerva wiped her tears away, and Dumbledore had removed the chairs as Minerva let Harry back inside. Harry had wondered what took them so long. The doors were too thick for him eavesdrop. He ran to Veronica's side again and saw that she was sleeping. He did not leave her bedside.
In the morning he had woken up to what looked like a seven year old Veronica. Her black hair was to her shoulders and she sat there poking him to wake up.
"Hey there sleepy head." she said as she giggled. Harry was tired, but smiled back.
"Do you remember me?" he asked her eagerly.
"Yes of course I remember you Harry. Hey do you have any ice cream for me? I'm hungry." She said smiling. Harry could see she had two missing teeth. Veronica realized he was looking at her missing teeth.
"I lost two teeth this morning, and I put them under my pillow for the tooth Fairy." Veronica said. Her voice was high pitched and she sounded like a seven year old. Then Madame Pomfrey came inside the room carrying a glass filled with red liquid.
"It's time for your medicine." She called in a cheery voice. Veronica had thrown her head into her pillow. "Come on you have to have your daily dose if you want to grow big again."
"I don't want it. It tastes gross." said Veronica as she lifted her head a little from her pillow but then put it back down.
"But don't you want to be thirteen again?" Madam Pomfrey asked trying to persuade the young Veronica to take the potion.
"No I lost two teeth this morning which means I'm growing. I don't need that potion." She yelled. Harry laughed as she kicked her feet and had a tantrum.
"I'll give you some ice cream if you drink it all." said Harry as he decided to help Madame Pomfrey. Veronica had stopped kicking and looked at Harry.
"You have ice cream?" she asked hopefully.
"Yes and you can have some if you take the medicine." He replied and Madame Pomfrey hoped she would agree.
"Fine, but I'm not drinking it for you, you understand?" she said to Harry.
"I understand." He said smiling at her. She was cute when she was young he thought. Veronica took the glass from Madame Pomfrey and drank the whole glass. She then made a funny face after which meant that she didn't like it at all.
"So now you give me my ice cream." She said at Harry. Harry didn't know what to say. He didn't have ice cream for her. Then Dumbledore walked in with an ice cream cone in his hand and it was filled with Vanilla.
"Did someone say Ice cream?" He said in a childish voice. Veronica clapped her hands and bounced up and down in her bed.
Minerva followed behind with more ice cream. She was smiling and looked better than she did last night.
"I heard you lost two teeth this morning." exclaimed Dumbledore. He looked at her with his kind eyes. Veronica nodded her head as she smiled to show him that some teeth were missing.
"Good, good," he said as he gave her the ice cream cone. She started to lick it and her face showed pure enjoyment. "Now you must pay attention to what I am about to tell you." She narrowed her big eyes at him showing that I she was listening.
"Should I go outside again Professor?" asked Harry.
"No you can stay Harry I think you deserve to know why Veronica is in this condition." Minerva said as she handed Harry a cone of ice cream. Dumbledore then started to explain everything to Veronica.
"Veronica, when you had sacrificed yourself for Harry you were reborn. This is because you are part phoenix." He started. Veronica looked at him with amazement. Harry was confused.
"Cool, so is that why my patronus is a phoenix and I can turn into one?" she asked.
"It may be Veronica, but it may also be because I might your father." He said. Harry chocked on his ice cream from what he just heard.
"You are her father?" he asked a little too loudly.
"Please don't go all Darth Vader on me." said Veronica laughing. Harry laughed too as he got the joke, but Dumbledore and Minerva didn't understand. Minerva ignored her comment.
"Yes Harry and I am her mother." Minerva said as she smiled at Veronica who stopped laughing and stared at her with bewilderment.
"Wait, I thought you said your daughter was dead." Harry said as he was beyond bewilderment at that point.
"Yes Harry, I thought she was dead too until Dumbledore told me last night that she wasn't, but instead she was Veronica."
"But she looks nothing like the girl in the picture." Harry said defiantly as he looked at Veronica who was still looking at Minerva. "You're mad she's Asian."
"Thank you Harry for pointing out what she looks like, but please let me finish my story."
"Wait, what do you mean when you say you might be my father?" asked Veronica as her big brown eyes were now focused on Dumbledore.
"He means that we are not sure. I was in school when I was pregnant with you. I had a boyfriend then. He was captain of the quidditch team for Slytherin as I was captain for Gryffindor. He was popular and so was I. We were bound to be with each other just like the stereotypical head cheerleader and quarterback. We grew quite fond of each other, and then we started dating, and you know what happened. I wasn't proud of it, but yet I again I did have you which I would never regret. Dumbledore and I grew fond of each other too, and you know what happened, and I was pregnant. That year was also the year the chamber of secrets was opened. During the time my boyfriend was acting strange and talking about how muggles deserved to die. I had a fight with my boyfriend about some hex he had put on another student, and it was the first time he had struck me. I ran away from fear into the girl's bathroom where moaning Myrtle was crying in there like always. My friend had found me to comfort me, but then Myrtle was killed by the bascalisk and my friend and I were dragged down into the chamber. My boyfriend was down there too. He had killed my friend off with the same course he had tried to kill you Harry."
"Wait Voldemort gave me this scar, are you saying your boyfriend was Voldemort?" Harry had interrupted the moment he had heard what she said. Minerva sighed and she shook her head.
"Yes it was Tom, Tom Riddle." she had managed to get out as though she wanted to forget it. "He had apologized for what he had done to me, but I was furious and scared. I called him a monster for killing all those innocent muggles and my friend. He got mad at me for what I said and we dueled right there. I ended up knocking him out, but he had made a deep gash on my stomach where you were, and I was bleeding to death on the floor and you, Veronica, were dying. I tried to make it back up the pipes, but it was no use. Dumbledore had somehow found me, and had summoned Fawkes whose tears healed us, but at the same time his tears had mixed with the development of your DNA; making you part phoenix." She had said as Veronica had completely forgotten her ice cream as it melted over her hand. Harry's fell on his lap.
"When you were born you looked like me. Minerva was sure I was the father, and Voldemort must have been spying because he grew with rage. He started killing muggles and wizards. I knew he was furious with Minerva, he wanted to punish her, and by punishing her he would go after the ones she loved. Voldemort was afraid of me, so wouldn't dare to go after me, but instead he was after Veronica. We hid you as best we could. You attended Hogwarts under a different name, but he had found out where you were. That's when we sent you abroad to China. You transformed yourself to look Asian to blend in as you were protected by my friends there. But nonetheless, Voldemort found you. He and his death eaters went after you killing you and your friends, but you did not go down without a fight. You held your ground as you took down his death eaters, but you could not take down Voldemort. He had killed you and after he left you could burst into flames as you were reborn. I came to the scene right away and erased your memory so Voldemort would not go after you again, and I told Minerva you had died to make everyone think you were truly dead. I made sure you were adopted by an American family where you would be far from Brittan, and where you would be happy. You still look Asian because that's who think you are, you don't have any reconciliation of your past life." Dumbledore had said as he had finished his story at last. Veronica had gotten tired by the end of the story, but struggled to stay up.
"So you're saying that you're her mother." Harry said as he pointed to Minerva. "And you maybe her father." Harry said as he pointed to Dumbledore.
"I don't think that I am Harry. I mean I would love to have Veronica as my daughter, but I don't think she is. Veronica is a metamorphous and parsel tongue. Neither Minerva nor I have anyone in the family that are those things."
"But I studied to be a metamorphous." Veronica protested.
"Yes you did, but you have forgotten how to change your looks, and therefore studied to remember." Dumbledore said looking prudent. "You were also skilled in the dark arts in school, as if it was natural to you, and you have done things I have never seen anyone do, except Lord Voldemort himself." Veronica was even more tired. She couldn't keep her head up. Why did she feel so tired all the time? She then fell back in her bed, and she was asleep. Harry watched her as her hair grew longer before his eyes. All her teeth came out as new ones came in. She grew taller and thinner.
"I expect she elven now." said Minerva as she too watched the changes.
"I think we should stop when she's thirteen. We are only a month away from her birthday, so it won't hurt to age her up a month ahead." Dumbledore said.
"I think we should go home Harry." Minerva said to Harry. "Snape will be wondering where we are.
"I'd like to stay if you don't mind." Harry said. He did not take his eyes away from Veronica. Minerva was about to persuade him to come home with her when Dumbledore interrupted her.
"Let him stay Minerva, it will be I fine." He said. She was then looked at Harry to see if he wanted to come, but he was busy looking at Veronica. She had then started to leave.
"When will she wake up?" Harry asked.
"Soon Harry. In one minute she'll be eleven, and then another two she will be twelve, and then at last in three minutes she will be thirteen in which she will wake up." Dumbledore said as Harry was still watching her. "Harry, you mustn't tell anyone what we have told you. I feel like Voldemort is growing stronger each and every day and he will be back for her and you Harry. I trust you two to protect each other. I would suggest keeping Veronica close to you. She can heal you Harry and take a hit for you when you need one. She is also very powerful, and if I am correct about her father being Voldemort than you will need her to fight him. Her powers will be the same as his." Dumbledore said but Harry interrupted him.
"She never left me, and I will never leave her. I promise this to you and to Veronica." Harry said valiantly. Dumbledore smiled.
"I know you will never let her go Harry." as he said this Veronica opened her eyes. She was thinner and taller. Her hair turned into honey blond waves and her eyes were crystal blue like Dumbledore's. Her skin was as white as milk and she got up from the bed. Harry looked at her speechless by the way she changed.
"What are you staring at?" she said as she nudged him. She then had seen her blond hair and her pale skin. She grew speechless too.
"You must have changed to your normal self when you learned who you truly are." Dumbledore said as he had a mirror appear from the end of his wand. Veronica looked at herself. She was astounded by the way she looked. She then saw a scar on her chest like Harry's. It was probably from the curse she had just experienced. "Now that's the Alice I knew." He said as he looked at her with a twinkle in his eyes.
"Alice?" she said bewildered.
"Yes Alice McGonagall. Your mother and named you after a very powerful Auror that was from my side of the family. Plus it sounded nicely with all three different last names you could have."
"So how do I look?" she asked Harry. Harry got up from his seat as he circled her.
"I liked how you looked before, I mean don't get me wrong, you are stunning, but you were prettier the way you were before to me." he answered still studying her features. With that she changed back, but kept her height and body frame. "That's better," he said as he looked at her. Veronica smiled at him and hugged him. He held her in his arm for the first time that felt like forever.
"Thank you for everything." He whispered in her ear as she held him tighter.
Author's note: Thought that was a good place to leave you off, if some made it this far. Hope the begining of the year was exciting enough for some, and there is more on the way.