AN: Thank you all for the overwhelming support! It is deeply appreciated!
Violet straightened out the lilac duvet on her queen sized bed. Then, she threw several parchments atop it. As she rearranged them into a straight line, Rose rapped her finger against the golden bed frame.
"There," Violet muttered. "That should be everything."
"How certain are you that this is a promising lead?" Rose asked.
"I'm very certain," Violet answered.
Rose crossed her arms over her chest.
"This has to be where Fawkes flew off to," Violet insisted. "It just has to be."
"While I agree that the Forest of Dean forest would be a decent place for a phoenix to hide, it is a massive area," Rose began.
"True, but what of it?"
"I am not sure if you will be able to traverse it thoroughly enough to find Fawkes."
"I have an idea of where to look," Violet grabbed one of the parchments and unfurled it. Then she pointed to a blue dot. "Do you see this?"
"I do," Rose replied.
Violet pointed to a green dot on the south side of the map. "This is the point furthest away from any ranger's station. It would make sense that Fawkes could hide here for years and escape detection."
"It is also the place where you would escape detection if you were injured," Rose noted.
Violet shrugged. "I'll have Hagrid with me. If I get into trouble he'll be able to help."
"How familiar is he with the Forest of Dean?"
"I don't know." Her face lit up. "But we have Mum's old maps in addition to these. There are also the stories she used to tell us. I'll bet I could find the Pool of the Forest of Dean from what she's told me alone."
"What?" Violet demanded. "What's wrong?"
"Mum is stressed and Dad is due for another episode. The last thing they need to hear is that you plan to spend half of February camping in the woods searching for a phoenix who may have left the continent," Rose replied.
"I know they'll be worried about me," Violet admitted. "But Mum went camping when she was eighteen. She made it out okay."
"At the end of her excursion she was captured by Death Eaters and almost killed."
"Fair enough, but this will much safer. I mean, to my knowledge there aren't any Death Eaters chasing after me."
"All Hagrid and I are doing is trying to find Fawkes. We're not outrunning a megalomaniacal wizard, just trying to help me get into the best magizology program possible once I graduate from Hogwarts."
"Mum did not go looking for danger, yet she found herself in peril."
"She was best friends with Harry Potter. Danger followed him wherever he went."
"She was in the middle of a war," Rose argued. "She was not embarking on some voluntary quest to find a bird."
"This isn't just any bird. It's Fawkes."
"I will admit that the legend of Fawkes is fascinating, but it isn't worth your life."
"I am going to be careful, and I am going with Hagrid. There's nothing to worry about."
"Perhaps you should just give Hagrid your research and let him find Fawkes. That way, you can be safe…."
"And he can be out in the woods alone with nobody to help him if he were to get into any trouble."
Rose put her head into her hands.
"I've had this planned out for months," Violet argued. "I can find Fawkes with Hagrid. Once we do that we can reunite him with Dad. If we're lucky, Fawkes will come back and guard the school again. He can protect us from people like Percy Weasley, just like he did before."
"Is Headmaster Longbottom aware of the fact that you think he needs a bird to perform his job effectively?" Rose asked.
"He doesn't need Fawkes per se…"
"Then why are you looking for him?"
"Because Headmaster Longbottom wants to see Fawkes again. Dad wants to see Fawkes again. Mum wants to see Fawkes again. The school wants to see Fawkes again. Everyone wants to see Fawkes again except for you," Violet answered.
"I would rather see my sister safe than any bird, regardless of how majestic it is," Rose answered.
Rose put a hand on Violet's shoulder. "I know how badly you want to reconcile Dad with his past, but I am telling you that he would rather see his daughter alive than a beautiful phoenix."
Violet bowed her head and muttered. "I know."
"That being said, there is no real rush to make any decision regarding whether or not you should take a trip to the Forest of Dean," Rose continued.
Violet glanced up.
"There is a full moon tonight, meaning Hagrid will be too distracted by protecting the school from amnesiacs to search for Fawkes. The full moon will end just before New Years. By then he will be planning which New Year's party to attend. Once we enter into the New Year he will need to create lesson plans. When school begins though, if Hagrid truly believes that finding Fawkes is an acceptable substitute for taking your N.E.W.T.S. in Care of Magical Creatures, and Headmaster Longbottom agrees with him, then I suppose I have no choice but to allow you to go gallivanting around the Stonegate Forest," Rose admitted.
Violet flung her arms around Rose. "Oh thank you! I'll tell Hagrid tomorrow that you said yes."
"I said if this is comparable to your N.E.W.T.S test and Headmaster Longbottom approves of it, then the answer is yes," Rose corrected. "Otherwise the answer is that you give him your research and stay in school."
Violet kissed her sister in the cheek. "That's as close to a yes as you'll come."
"Indeed it is," Rose replied, already wondering if she had just made the correct decision.
"What did Rose agree to do for you now?"
Violet backed away from her sister. She turned to her father and grinned. "What makes you think she's agreed to anything?"
"It's that look in your eyes," Severus replied.
Violet gave him the most innocent look she could muster. "What look?"
"That look of pure and utter devotion," Severus replied.
"Why would I look at her with anything other than 'pure and utter devotion?' After all she is the best sister in the world."
"You never look at her like she's the best sister in the world unless she has agreed to give you something."
"What did she agree to give you, and why do I fear that I will not like it?" Severus asked.
"Violet is pleased because I agreed to write her a letter of recommendation for a university specializing in Care of Magical Creatures," Rose replied.
Severus raised an eyebrow. "I thought a relative was not allowed to write a university endorsement for a potential student."
"True," Rose admitted. "But it would look even odder if the head of her house refused to endorse her."
"Fair enough," Severus drawled, his arms crossed over his chest.
"What?" Violet asked.
"Nothing," Severus drawled. "I simply see too much of your mother in you right now."
"Is that a bad thing?"
"When I see that expression and think of all the trouble she got into when she gave it to me, then yes, it is a terrible thing."
"Violet's mischievous expression aside," Rose cleared her throat. "Did you need us for anything, Dad?"
Severus's expression lightened. "I wanted to tell my children good night before I retired for the evening."
Rose replied, "I take it you are going to take a sleeping draught soon."
"I am," Severus replied.
Violet strolled over and hugged her father. "I love you, Dad."
He returned the embrace. "I love you too, Little Petal."
Rose swallowed. "I love you as well, Dad."
Severus released Violet and hugged Rose. "I love you so much, Little One."
"Before I take the draught though," Severus looked into his eldest daughter's eyes. "Ronald Weasley would like to speak with you."
Rose's eyes grew. "Ronald?"
"How did he contact you?"
"He flooed me five minutes ago."
"I see," Rose drawled.
"You do not need to speak to him if you do not wish to do so," Severus replied. "In fact, I would be all too happy to tell him to leave and never call again."
"No," Rose exhaled. "I am of age. I should talk to him myself."
"Fair enough," Severus replied. "In the meantime I should find my favorite couch."
"Why would you do that?" Violet asked.
"Ron is on the floo in our bedroom," Severus answered.
"Oh," Violet replied.
Rose huffed. "No, you will sleep in your own bed."
"There is no need to interfere with your floo call. I can fall asleep on the sofa and have your mother levitate me to my bed when you finish speaking with Ron," Severus offered.
"No," Rose replied. "I do not mind if you hear what I have to say to Ronald. Mum may hear it as well."
"We do not want to intrude…"
"Perhaps you need to hear what I tell Ronald."
He gave her a small grin. "Very well then. I will come into my bedroom once I finish speaking with your brother."
"Okay." Rose kissed Severus on the cheek. Then she strolled down the hallway, her sense of purpose clearer than ever.