St. Mungo’s was unbelievably busy. Healers were running through the halls and there was a little girl crying. Minerva ran over to her. “Sunny, child, what are you
doing here by yourself?”
Sunny looked up at Minerva. “Aunt Minerva, Mommy is sick!” Minerva
picked up the child and rejoined the group. Bill and Harry were trying to check
into a room and get a Healer.
The blonde haired nurse was not as collected
and bored as Harry had last seen her, last year at Christmas. “If we knew
what was wrong with her,” Bill told the nurse, “we wouldn’t be here!”
After a few more minutes of trying to find
someone, Penelope Clearwater came up to them. “Professors, how good to
see you! Is there anything wrong?”
Albus quickly told her their
dilemma. Penelope looked around. “Okay,
come this way, quickly.” Bill picked Aurora
up and followed as Harry took the lead. Albus and Hermione behind Harry. Minerva, carrying Sunny, walked at a brisk pace, Severus and Ron at her side.
They passed small groups of people nursing
small injuries or surrounding one person with major injuries. When they made
it to the room that Penelope should them, Albus took the opportunity to inquire of the events that had taken place.
“People are coming in from all over
the place,” Penelope said, her eyes sad and fearful. “There are claims
of Death Eaters and Dementors. Our world is under attack.” She made her way to the door. “My friend, Anton, is
a healer here. I’ll send him immediately.” She made her exit, leaving the occupants of the room in silence.
Ron and Hermione were staring at Harry.
Bill pulled up a chair from the corner
to sit by the bed in which Aurora was unconscious. He was not yet crying but could feel the tears pushing their way forward.
Severus paced from one corner to the other, unsure of what to do with himself for the first time since Harry had seen
into his memories last year.
Minerva sat herself in a chair
on the other side of the bed, keeping Sunny occupied while she figured out what she would need to do. Albus stood near a window, looking out into the fake, enchanted sky.
A few minutes later, Anton came quietly
into the room. “Hello, my name is Anton Maniac,” he said. Smiling, he continued, “I’m only a maniac when there’s nothing else to do.” He walked to the foot of the bed. “Penelope
told me that I was to talk to Albus Dumbledore.” Albus tore himself away
from the window to talk to Anton. “That must be you. Sir, it’s a pleasure to meet you.” Albus shook
his hand and nodded. “What can you tell me about the patient?”
“She is an Enchantress, has a fiancée,
and will be teaching at Hogwarts come the autumn,” he said, bluntly. “We
were at a muggle restaurant when she fainted.”
“Did she say anything,” Anton
inquired, “or did she just faint.”
“She said something about the wine,”
Bill spoke up.
“Yes,” Albus explained,
“she said not to drink it.” Anton’s eyes grew wide with anticipation.
“Who had some of the wine?” Anton looked around the room. Albus,
Bill, Minerva, and Severus had drunk wine at dinner. “Was it all from the
same bottle?” Albus nodded. “Did
anyone happen to bring the bottle?” Albus and Bill looked around. Severus raised his hand. “Can I
Severus pulled the bottle with the dark
liquid from a hidden pocket in his cloak. He handed the bottle to Anton, eyebrows
raised. “I’m going to have this sent down to our analyzers so we
can find out what’s in it.”
“I can tell you exactly what’s
in it,” Severus said. “There is nothing wrong with the wine, nor
is there anything wrong with Aurora.” Bill looked up at Severus, confusion evident on his face. “I
slipped some Veritaserum in her drink when she was not looking. It seems that
it is not a very good idea to try a truth potion on an Enchantress.” Severus
tried to offer a small smile, but failed.
Harry turned to Albus. “Will she be okay? I mean, that stuff won’t kill
her, will it?”
“Harry, it is very hard
to injure an Enchantress. However, Veritaserum can be rather painful. Did Aurora tell you
that she is not allowed to lie?” Harry nodded. Albus continued. “To give this particular truth potion
to someone who cannot lie can be very damaging. However, this is an Enchantress
we are talking about . . .” Albus muttered the last part.
Hermione spoke up. “I’m sorry, sir. How does Aurora being an Enchantress make a difference?”
Bill looked up and shook his head at Albus.
“I believe that Aurora is the one that must tell you that,” Albus said, kindly. “I’m sure she’ll be fine in a couple of days, just in time for Harry’s
birthday.” Harry gave everyone, except Severus, a small smile and then
went and sat down beside his sister.
Harry, Ron, and Hermione were told to stay
in Aurora’s hospital room. Albus sent for Molly or Arthur to come and collect the lot of them.
“I’m staying with Aurora,” Bill said
to the trio when they asked if he was coming. When Harry put up a protest to
stay too, Bill had to explain further. “Listen, Harry,” Bill said,
quietly, “I’m sure Aurora would want you here
just as much as I do. But, with the possibility of Death Eaters actually being
in the hospital. Well, no one wants you to take a chance. I’m sure Aurora wouldn’t either.”
Harry nodded, he didn’t
want to leave Aurora’s room, and he felt the sudden
urge to talk to Aunt Petunia. Harry also didn’t feel that he should be
anywhere were Severus Snape had been either. Moments after Severus confessed,
Alia Roman (Head of the Council) showed up to take Severus away for a while. She
checked on Aurora, and with Severus in invisible shackles,
apparated away again.
Hermione had gone swung into
full gear after a small chat with Alia Roman. She couldn’t yet use magic
outside of school yet, so when Penelope came back, Hermione set her to work conjuring different books and other items that
she needed. “Uh, Hermione,” Ron asked, tentatively. Hermione looked up from an enormous volume, her hair falling in front of her face. “When Mom or Dad show up, how are you going to get everything back home?”
“I’ll send it along
after you three leave,” Penelope piped up as Hermione turned back to her reading.
Harry sat beside Aurora’s bed, sipping on a cup
of tea. Aurora
had hardly moved since they got her there. Bill was off with Albus for the moment,
discussing Severus Snape since Minerva had gone off to find Sunny’s mother.
Harry stared down at his sister
and wondered why he hadn’t realized that she was his sister. She looked
amazingly like his mother, from the pictures he had seen. Her hair was long and
curly, like the pictures. He felt she had his father’s eyes though. Remarkably ironic, thought Harry, how we’re just like Mom and Dad
except for the eyes. . . He didn’t feel that it was wrong or
evil though. He felt like he had family.
Sure, Aunt Petunia was okay, except he wasn’t sure of her the way she just changed, bang, overnight. He’d like to think that it was genuine. The thought
of more lies involving his family didn’t make an ideal situation, in Harry’s mind.
Aurora stirred. Harry brought himself out of
his stupor and try to focus on helping his sister. She grabbed his hand as her
breathing became labored. She took his other hand and forced Harry to look at
her. “Harry, not matter what happens, you have to continue the fight.”
Harry stared at Aurora
in bewilderment. What was she talking about?
“Harry, he’ll try to throw you off and make it hard. You have
to fight that and fight him. Promise me, Harry.
Promise me that you’ll never give up. Promiiise me, promise that
you’ll continue to fight.”