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Lily Snape couldn't hear anything. She stayed out for a couple of minutes. She couldn't only think of herself. She had to think of Harry now. Lily drew her wand when she heard Remus yell. She inched closer to the first landing and tried to open the door when in came Severus, Remus and a woman. She recognized her immediately. It was Narcissa Malfoy. She was crying and held onto a bundle in her arms. Severus had held her near him. Remus looked as bewildered as she felt.
"What is going on?" She asked carefully.
Severus looked at her and then at Remus. "Ward the house." Remus stepped out.
"I don't have anywhere to go. She wanted me to take the mark. Bella's gone mad. The Dark Lord tortured Lucius. He killed him, I watched as my sister tortured him." Lily had never seen or heard Narcissa so fragile.
She went into the kitchen and made tea. It was what she could do now. She put the kettle on and served a tray. Remus was sitting in a chair by the door she came back. Lily set the tray down. Narcissa quieted. She looked at Lily and then at Remus. The woman must have squeezed the bundle. The bundle cried. It was a baby. He couldn't be older than a few weeks.
The young woman rocked her baby. She tried to stop crying. She looked at her with distrustful eyes and didn't even look at Remus. Lily observed as she looked at her son. She looked extremely sad. She lowered her gaze. The silence in the room was almost palpable. They could only hear the baby squirm.
Narcissa tried to comfort her child but it was obvious the woman was exhausted both emotionally and physically. "Give him to me Cissy." Severus said gently and grabbed the baby. Lily saw as her husband held a very blond and small baby.
"Hello Draco." Severus smiled and kissed the baby. Narcissa inched closer to Sev. She caressed the baby's hair. "You'll be his godfather. I named him after our favorite constellation." She smiled and continued. "Lucius wanted to name him Scorpius but I convinced him to name our baby Draco."
"He looks like Lucius. He will be just as handsome." The blonde cried again. This time Severus murmured something and the baby closed his eyes. Her husband looked at her but she was too perplexed to react. It was Remus who conjured a playpen.
Narcissa then launched herself at Severus. Lily was surprised the pureblood woman forgot her decorum. The muggle born always thought Black to be a cold woman. She was always composed, prim and exuded an aura of haughty boredom. She was anything but that at the moment. She sobbed and hugged Severus.
Lily's husband comforted the woman. Remus looked uncomfortable as she was.
"What happened?" Sev asked her.
"Could we speak in private? Just the two of us please." Narcissa pouted.
Severus gently caressed the woman's cheek. "I trust them. Do you trust me?"
Cissy nodded, "I always have. I always will Severus." The woman wiping her tears. Lily felt like an intruder.
Severus took the woman's hands on his. "You must trust them. It is better if Lils and Remus hear this too. They will vouch for you." Lily didn't understand.
Narcissa Malfoy sighed deeply. "The Dark Lord."
"He Who Must Not Be Named." Remus said immediately. The rest of them looked at him strangely.
"Only his followers call him the Dark Lord." Remus replied. Severus and him exchanged a meaningful look. Lily didn't have time to ask or examine the look.
"He, he wanted..." The woman stopped and drew a shuddering breath. "They planned the attack. He was supposed to have you and Longbottom. He planned to torture you and then find your pregnant wives." Narcissa continued as if she was talking to herself.
"The operation failed. Longbottom and you were unscathed. He went aimed his wand at Lucius. He tortured him. My Lucius twitched in pain for ours. I begged Bellatrix to stop. I begged him to stop. He didn't."
Lily felt her skin crawl. "Why?" Severus asked. Lily gasped because the question was too insensitive. Lucius Malfoy was foul but he was just an outlet for You Know Who.
"He saw you with Sirius and the werewolf. Lucius saw you; Rabastan aimed at you. Lucius, he pushed him aside." Lily felt her heart on her throat. It couldn't be; that man saved her husband.
"I'm so sorry. Cissy, I'm so sorry." Severus barely said.
"Lucius, he really did love you. You were like his little brother. He wanted you to be Draco's godfather." Narcissa's face hardened. "He came home quickly. Lucius told me to grab Draco and go to the study. "We have to leave. Find the paper Severus gave you. The Dark Lord will punish me." He said. Narcissa continued her tale. "I was to gather our jewelry, money and Gringotts key. I waited but he never came. Bellatrix grabbed me and took me to our living room. My Lucius was on the floor, bloodied. His "brothers" aimed their wands at him. My husband begged for mercy."
"They accused him of being a blood traitor." Narcissa spat with anger.
"My dear friends. Let this filth be an example of what happens to those who forsake their kin." Narcissa looked at a fixed point in front of her. "I cried, tried to claw Bella and reached for my wand. They took Draco from me and I saw as You Know Who casted the killing curse on Lucius."
Severus hugged her. "I'm so sorry Cissy."
Lily felt panic. "I told him about the paper. I couldn't keep it from him. You were our friend. You were his friend before you were my friend." Narcissa looked at him with resolve. "He was sorry Severus. He was sorry. I'm sorry. I don't want anyone to harm Draco. Lucius is gone. He's gone." She tried to convince Severus even though it was clear Severus believed her and would hail fire for his friend.
"They took his body and forced me into my room. Bella handed me Draco because he wouldn't stop crying. She warded the door and came back the next morning. My sister told me I was to marry Rabastan Lestrange and take the mark. She left and I held onto your paper and Draco. We apparated in London. I thought it would bring me to you. It didn't. I held onto it again until it finally brought me here."
"You're all we have Severus. I don't know what do. He's gone. My Lucius is gone." She clung to Severus and cried. Her husband shushed the woman once more. Narcissa wouldn't speak anymore. The air in the room turned tense once more. This time neither Severus nor Narcissa spoke.
Lily stood up and went to the kitchen. Remus followed her. Her friend echoed her doubts. "We have to tell Dumbledore."
"We will." She said out loud.
Lily started cooking lunch. Remus stayed with her and helped her cook the meal. "What do you think will happen now?" Lily asked carefully as they chopped vegetables. "We have to meet with the Order. Sirius is gone. We need to regroup and now this. Narcissa Black is here." Remus turned on the stove. Pasta would be a safe bet. Everyone likes pasta.
They cooked a perfect meal. It was agreed they would put their best efforts into giving Narcissa some time. They stalled as much as they could but eventually Lily had to go into the living room. Severus stroked the woman's hair. "Lunch is ready." She said a little uncomfortable.
The woman looked at Severus. "I'm not hungry. I want to sleep." She didn't look at Lily twice.
Lily saw as Severus picked the baby gently. "Come on. I'll show you to your room." She saw as her husband led Narcissa Malfoy to what was Sirius's room.
Lily went back into the kitchen. "She isn't feeling well. Sev took her to Sirius's room."
"It's best if we ate then." Remus said gently. Lily nodded. They ate in silence, still reeling from the events they experienced this morning and early afternoon. Her friend washed up the dishes. She went back to the living room. Remus came back fifteen minutes later. "Lily, could you tell Severus I will be back in the evening?"
Lily looked at him, "We have to wait for Severus. You can't tell anyone." Her husband should know. They needed a plan. She agreed with Remus, they had to tell the Order but Severus should be aware of their plans.
Remus nodded, "I need to leave now Lils. You need news. I'm going to the Burrow and maybe Diagon Alley. We need information."
She hugged him, "Be careful. Please come back. Don't do anything stupid."
"I won't." Remus said sadly. Her friend asked for her help with the wards. Her husband taught her the spells. Only her and Severus were able to undo them. According to Severus only very powerful and skilled wizards could be able to decipher the wards.
The woman saw as his friend apparated away. Lily went back inside the house. She waited for them to come down but nothing happened. Sirius's room was locked. Lily went to her room. She needed time to process the events of the day. It wasn't even 4:00 PM yet. She crossed opened the door and found her husband looking at a fixed point in the wall.
She stood in front of him. The witch waited for a reaction. Severus looked at her. "She's asleep. I stayed with her until she slept. Draco is sleeping too." He looked out of sorts.
She inched closer to him, until she could caress his hair. He broke then; her husband hugged her. She felt him shake as he hugged her. Lily realized he was crying. She hushed him and hugged him fiercely. The witch comforted him. She grabbed his hand and lied down. Severus rested his head on her lap. Lily caressed his hair. She could feel him crying. The woman remained quiet. She understood what it felt like to lose a friend. She just didn't realize how fond of Lucius her husband was.
He needed to let the hurt out. She let him cry silently. Severus spoke after some time. "He was my friend. He protected me from the other boys. Lucius understood me. He understood what it meant to have a drunk father." Severus quieted then. He wiped his tears. Lily didn't speak. She didn't say anything. The woman respected Severus's grief as he respected her grief for James.
"Where is Remus?" He asked while sitting up.
Lily remained in her position. "He went to get information."
Severus hesitated, "He promised to not say anything to anyone until we get together and discuss things."
Her husband looked at her. "She has nowhere to go. Her parents are dead as is Lucius. She only has me." He stood up, and paced like he did when he had too much pent up energy.
She didn't like his tone. This was Severus on punishing mode. He had this complex, where everything around him was his fault. He felt responsible for every wrong in the world.
The woman stood up in front of him. She made him look into her eyes. "Nothing of this is your fault. I am sorry for your friend but he chose his path just as James, Fabian, Gideon and Regulus did."
Severus hugged her. She held him. "Let's go downstairs. We'll have lunch and wait for Remus."
Lily went with him. "Remus and I ate earlier. I can heat your plate…"
"I'm not hungry." He replied.
"We can wait here until Remus comes back." She held his hand and guided him back to their bed.
Severus held her and rubbed her belly until they were both sleepy.
She woke up to Severus shaking her lightly. "Wake up love. Remus is here." Lily was immediately alert. Her husband helped her out of the bed.
They walked down to the living room. Remus sat by the fireplace. "We should wake her. She needs to hear this." Severus went up the stairs to get Narcissa.
"What happened?" Lily asked and sat by the sofa. She put her feet up and waited for Remus to answer.
"She's reported as missing since the day of the raids." Remus said. He stopped speaking when Severus and Narcissa came down the stairs. She had the baby on her arms.
"Cissy, he's asleep. Maybe it would be best if he stayed upstairs." Severus pointed out.
The woman shook her head. "No, please Severus." She sounded scared.
Lily conjured another playpen next to her. Narcissa looked at her and spoke to her for the first time since they were in school. They usually spoke to each other when they needed to find Sev.
"Thank you Evans." The witch said.
"Snape. It's Lily Snape now." It was reflex. She said it to everyone because sometimes members in the Order addressed her as Evans. Narcissa eyed her curiously before setting her son in the playpen. The woman sat down next to her.
Severus sat by the playpen. Remus spoke then, "Your sister seized all of Malfoy's properties. She claims your husband dead and you to be missing, probably dead too. She executed a will in which she and her husband are the sole executors of his estate." Remus continued.
"Word in Diagon Alley is that there are Death Eaters looking for you." He looked at Narcissa who shook slightly.
"I'll protect you. I will not let them touch you or Draco. You will be safe Cissy. I promise." Severus intoned with fervor.
"Where will I go? I have nothing Severus." She said scared for her life.
Lily watched as Severus answered. "You'll stay here with us until I can find a safe house for you. I swear Cissy." She knew him. It was what she expected. Lily felt a twinge of fear but then realized that they were already in danger. He Who Must Not Be Named already had her family in his sights.
Harry kicked up a storm. "What will we do?" The woman said anxiously.
Severus looked at Remus, "We have to tell the Order." Remus nodded. "I will travel to Hogsmeade tonight. We still have to tell Dumbledore about Sirius."
Narcissa looked confused. "What happened to Sirius?" Lily thought she could see some worry behind the woman's eyes and tone.
Severus answered for them. "He went to search for Pettigrew. The rat killed Potter." Narcissa gasped.
Remus continued speaking, "I will tell the Headmaster tonight. We have to act quickly, whatever information she has can be very useful to us."
The woman's eyes shone with fury, "I will tell the Headmaster everything. I know most of their names and their hiding places. They will all pay for what they did to my Lucius." Severus hugged her. "Remus could you please go?" Severus asked him.
Their friend nodded, "I'm not coming back tonight. It is best if I stay in the castle tonight." Lily didn't understand her friend's attitude. It was always a hassle to wake up and undo the wards but Severus wouldn't mind it.
"This is for you Lily." Remus handed her letters from Alice, Molly, and Tobias. Petunia didn't have their address.
"Severus, a word." Remus said as they stepped outside.
Lily remained in the living room with the woman. The silence stretched. She couldn't take it and finally spoke. "He is very handsome." Lily looked at the baby.
Narcissa smiled and reached for her son. She sat back down next to her. Lily had perfect view of little Draco Malfoy. "He looks a lot like Lucius." The baby opened his eyes. He had beautiful blue eyes.
Lily came closer and looked at the baby on the woman's arms. The witch didn't think much about her actions. She touched his small head; the witch could feel a fine layer of blond hair. "He was born hairless, then two weeks after he had all this hair." Narcissa laughed as she gave the information.
The redheaded witch looked at Narcissa and said for the first time, "I'm sorry for your loss. He seemed to love you very much." It was all Lily could say. It was all she felt confident in saying. She remembered very little about the man but she remembered that he looked very in love with Narcissa Black. Lily remembered flowers, chocolates, the love struck look the late Lucius Malfoy had whenever Narcissa Black entered the Great Hall. Lily recalled how happy she was when the witch and the wizard went out together. It was her third year. She was happy because now it was Lucius and Narcissa together. They left Severus to her and only her.
Narcissa cried. Lily panicked, "I'm sorry, I didn't mean to make you cry."
The woman wiped her tears. "I don't know if I can do this."
Lily looked at her and tried to help. "When I lost my parents. I thought I couldn't go on but I had someone to love. I had Severus. You have Draco and Draco has you. He needs you now."
"Thank you Mrs. Snape." Narcissa Malfoy said formally. Never in a million years would Lily have thought that the following words would leave her mouth. "Call me Lily please."
Narcissa nodded, "You must call me Narcissa then." It wasn't a friendship proclamation but it was step in the right direction.
Severus entered the house. "Remus will send his patronus once he has details of the meeting." Her husband kissed her hands. Lily moved a little to the side. She intended for Sev to join her.
Narcissa breathed deeply. "Severus, how will this work?"
Severus sat down in front of them. "You will be in the meeting. I presume Dumbledore will call a meeting with the oldest members."
"Who are these people?" She asked trying to appear collected.
"The Weasleys, Professor McGonagall, Hagrid, some aurors, the Longbottoms, and a few other people you don't know." Severus said honestly.
"They're all Gryffindors." She said somberly.
"They are, and you have information. Narcissa, I will not let them hurt you." Severus reassured her.
Lily tried to put herself in the woman's shoes and realized it couldn't be easy for her. Narcissa Black never participated in any death eater activity during her school years but she was the epitome of pureblood propaganda. She believed in blood purity and looked at muggleborns as if they were filth yet her best friend was a half-blood and her pureblood friends killed her pureblood husband.
"They will believe me. They have to. I have information." The woman said, trying to convince herself.
"It is best if you ate and then rested. I will heat some of the leftovers from lunch. Lily you will eat too." He stood up and helped Lily up from the sofa. He picked Draco from Narcissa.
"I will feed Draco." He said as they went into the kitchen.
Severus was a natural with the baby. He transfigured glasses into bottles and subtly asked Narcissa if the baby was breastfeed. Narcissa nodded. Lily thought Narcissa wasn't the type to breastfeed.
"Then I will not feed him." Severus said uncomfortably.
"It is not his dinner time yet." Narcissa said and ate the pasta without many words.
Lily ate her dinner too; she felt like a cow and still had about three months to go. Severus held Draco until Narcissa was finished and announced she would retire.
Lily washed up. Severus stayed with her. "You have not eaten all day." She started. "I don't want to." He said, lost in his own thoughts.
"Eat something please." The pasta was gone but she could make him a ham sandwich. She took out the sliced bread and made two sandwiches. The woman sat down and forced her husband to eat them.
Remus's wolf patronus announced the meeting would take place the next day in the evening. Severus planned to retire to his lab but Lily refused to let him go to the basement.
"You need to sleep. Tomorrow is a very important day. You need to be sharp and rest tonight." Lily commented reasonably.
Severus followed her silently. He spooned her, her husband held her tighter that night and Lily appreciated it. There was someone else dead; another boy would grow up without knowing his father.