Objection

Chapter 134

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DA Conway cringed. Of all things, she just had to expound on the toe-eating dragons and the Beezles.

Luna continued talking, oblivious to Conway's distress. The judge was beginning to exhibit her own discomfort. Conway glanced at the jury. Two men looked at her as though she was completely crazy while a couple of women wore expressions of pity. The college girl listened with rapt interest, almost as if she believed in the creatures Luna was describing.

"Objection your Honor!"

Conway's attention snapped back to Hermione and the trial.

"This witness is becoming narrative," Hermione continued.

Snape suppressed a smirk. He, too, had seen the looks on a few of the jurors' faces once Luna had mentioned her imaginary entities.

"Sustained," the judge answered. "The statement is becoming too long. Please ask her a question, Mr. Conway."

"Yes your Honor!" he answered,

The rest of her testimony went smoothly, although Conway wondered how seriously the jurors were taking it after her discussion of Beezles. She seemed very credible when she discussed the fight; at least she did to Conway. Still, one could never be certain what went on inside a juror's head.

"No further questions!" Conway stated.

He sat down. "Does the defense have any questions?"

"Yes your Honor," Hermione answered before standing up.

She strolled over to the witness stand and asked, "Mrs. Potter, is it true that you were looking for, uh, mystical animals on the night of the murder?"

"Yes!" Luna answered.

"So, you were outside Mr. Snape's house searching for these creatures?" Hermione asked.

"Yes," Luna replied.

"You had a clear view of the confrontation, right?" Hermione asked.

"Yes," Luna answered.

"You could hear everything going on?"

"Yes."

"Did Mr. Snape at any point threaten to kill Rita Skeeter?"

"He said he'd destroy her," Luna answered.

"But to destroy someone is not to kill them, right?"

Luna thought for a moment and answered, "No."

"Was there ever a threat made on Rita Skeeter's life?"

"Not directly," Luna answered.

"And you never saw the murder?"

"No," Luna replied.

"Never investigated the crime scene?"

"No."

"So in other words, other than hearing Mr. Snape yell a vague threat in a fit of rage, you have no other evidence in this case?"

"No," Luna replied.

"Now tell me Luna, who received a medal of honor for his heroic work in the Second Wizarding War?"

"Objection!" Conway yelled.

He stood up and continued. "How is that relevant to today's case?"

The judge looked expectantly at Hermione. "It goes to the character of the defendant," she replied. "And the witness was present at this particular ceremony."

"I'll allow the question on the grounds that it goes to character. Still Mr. Conway if you feel that this line of questioning is becoming irrelevant then you may renew your objection," the judge answered.

"Thank you your Honor!" Conway replied as he sat down.

"Thank you your Honor," Hermione replied before turning to Luna and asking, "Would you like me to repeat the question?"

"Yes," Luna answered with a serene smile.

"Who received a medal of honor for his heroic work in the Second Wizarding War?" Hermione asked.

"The defendant, Severus Snape," she replied.

"Were you at the ceremony?"

"Yes!" Luna replied.

"And you're sure that the defendant is the same man whom you saw receive the Medal of Honor?" Hermione asked.

"Yes!" Luna replied with confidence.

"No further questions," Hermione replied before reclaiming her seat.

"Any redirect?" the judge asked.

Conway stood up. "None, your Honor."

"Then this witness is dismissed. Thank you Mrs. Potter."

"Thank you, your Honor," Luna answered before stepping off the stand and exiting the courtroom.

"Next witness?" the judge asked.

"The prosecution would like to call Mr. Harry Potter to the stand!" Conway announced.

Hermione took a deep breath as the door opened. Despite her best efforts to remain calm, her heart raced and tiny beads of sweat dotted her forehead as Harry strode into the courtroom. Surreptitiously drying her clammy hands on her skirt, she desperately willed herself to focus on her breathing.

Severus was fighting his own battle against panic. He knew why Potter was being called. Potter had seen the pensieve and was more than willing to expose every one of his secrets, every unflattering scene, everything he'd fought so hard to suppress.

He took a deep breath and tried to return his thoughts to the practice sessions he had with Hermione. Dirty socks and sleep talking distracted him for a few moments, but the illusion was shattered when Conway began,

"Mr. Potter, are you aware of why you're here today?"

Snape looked over at Hermione. There was a glimmer of anxiety in her eyes, but he was reasonably sure it was only evident to him because he'd studied those eyes for months now. He had to admire her; for what Potter had put her through, she was coping remarkably well.

"I'm here to testify to the character of Severus Snape and to the memories he shared with me in the pensieve," Harry answered.

"What pensieve?" the DA asked.

"The one used at his trial in Britain," Harry replied trying his best to focus on the jury and to avoid looking at Snape and Hermione.

"What was he on trial for?" Conway asked.

"Being a Death Eater," Harry answered.

"Now, this pensieve, was it authentic?"

"Yes," Harry replied before swallowing. "It saved us in the war."

"Okay," Conway answered. "What kinds of memories were in this particular pensieve?"

"Things from his childhood, why he became a Death Eater, and some things he'd seen as a spy."

Hermione could sense Severus becoming more apprehensive. She wanted nothing more than to hold him or apparate away from this courtroom, but the last thing he needed was to land back in jail for being a flight risk.

"Were there any that, in your lay opinion, were particularly traumatizing?" Conway asked.

"Well, there was one from his childhood at Hogwarts which involved my father and godfather."

"Please describe it for the court," DA Conway requested.

Hermione saw Severus shudder. Fear engulfed his eyes, as if Potter himself was administering the Dementor's kiss. Hermione frowned and rose to her feet.

Harry opened his mouth but closed it again when he heard,

"Objection!"