Cauldrons and Lilies

Chapter 67

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Chapter 67

Lily sat by Severus and the rest of the Hogwarts professors. It was the night of the last task and Severus was on edge. He was sure Cedric Diggory would die that night. Her husband volunteered to inspect the maze and personally assessed the Triwizard Cup. The headmaster oversaw every aspect of the last task down to making sure the quidditch pitch was properly trimmed and there was no way for intruders to penetrate the maze itself. Severus obsessed over the ministry's permits to have apparation points opened within the quidditch pitch. The ministry succeeded in getting Dumbledore to drop the wards and have the quidditch pitch open to visitors.

Severus was anxious; he tracked the stands to look for Harry who was seated with his friends and cheering for Cedric. The first red sparks came about forty minutes into the task. Hagrid and Moody pulled Fleur Delacour out of the maze. Severus came back to his seat and they waited. Krum and Cedric continued to make their way into the maze. An hour later Severus and Moody heard the alert for the cup. One of them had reached it.

Lily watched as the maze reduced itself and there he was, Cedric Diggory Triwizard Champion. Severus looked relieved, Krum was by the side kicking grass. Amos Diggory cheered and ran down to his son.

Lily sighed in relief when it happened. The sky turned grey, stormy dark grey when the first dementors circled the pitch. She took out her wand and thought of Harry's birth. The familiar shiny silver doe galloped along different patronuses. She saw Severus' doe, McGonagall's cat, Flitwick's nightingale, Sprout's lizard and Dumbledore's phoenix ran and make a barrier for the students.

Lily ran down to the maze. There were dementors preying on the ministry officials as well as the Diggorys. Sirius looked at his forearm. "It's burning" he yelled.

Soon the dementors cleared and the Dark Mark shone grotesquely bright in the sky. The children yelled. Severus looked at her and she nodded. Harry and the kids were priority. Lily looked at the arena and saw the Cedric Diggory's lifeless body and a hooded figure aiming at the boy on the floor.

She casted a protective charm as did Flitwick and Sprout. People disapparated left and right. The death eaters landed and began attacking. It was mayhem, Lily and Sirius aimed at death eaters from the right. Severus and Dumbledore looked at each other and aimed at the kids, suddenly there was a sheen like barrier around the boxes with the children. Dumbledore yelled ate the seventh graders. "Apparate them to Hogsmeade." The Seventh graders grabbed the two first years at a time. Flitwick, Trelawney and the rest of the staff grabbed the children as did the some of the ministry officials.

The adults defended and attacked the death eaters as best as they could. Amos and Gabrielle Diggory protected the body of their son. Gabrielle sobbed and clung to her child while Amos was in shock.

Lily heard a cackle and saw Bellatrix Lestrange with her husband and brother in law. Sirius and her took them. Bellatrix aimed at her with a cruciatus curse and got her. The pain was excruciating. She felt Sirius pick her up. He was Sirius once more. "They are trying to get to the students."

Severus and Albus fought off Rosier and Mulciber. Albus went back saw the cracks on the walls and went back to the students. He looked at his Headboy and yelled. "Get in front of the young ones." He yelled to the seventh graders who stoically did. "Apparate as many as you can."

Lily recovered somewhat and stood up and hex death eaters once more. Severus did short work of three. It seemed as if they were winning and could subdue them, Fudge looked afraid and cowered behind the stands as did Bagman. Lily's blood ran cold, there in front of them was Lord Voldemort in the flesh.

He went for Severus. Her husband waved his wand and she felt herself pushed to the stands behind Dumbledore.

"Stay here." The headmaster said while he approached Voldemort and Severus.

"We see each other once again Master Snape." Voldemort addressed him and began attacking.

Severus remained silent and attacked back. There was a flurry of hexes, Sirius dueled Bellatrix as did McGonagall. Lily felt her heart in her throat when Dumbledore spoke to her. "You have to take the children to safety." There were a few students rooted behind the sheen. Lily grabbed three fifth years and apparated to Hogsmeade.

There were crowds of children with aurors around them. She saw Gus and Kingsley. Lily ran to Harry who hugged her.

"Where is dad?" He said quickly.

"He's with the headmaster." Lily said gravelly. It was chaos, all around the little town. Severus and her discussed that if anything happened one of them would stay back with Harry and so she waited for fifteen excruciating minutes before Dumbledore came back with Sirius by his side.

"Where is Severus?" She asked immediately.

"He is fine, in the infirmary, scrapes and a gash on his arm." The headmaster explained.

She sighed and nodded. "What do you need me to do?" Lily needed to compartmentalize and think clearly.

"Help the aurors get the children back to the castle. The Diggorys are dead." He said somberly.

Lily went back to Harry and his friends. "We are going back to the Castle." She said and rounded Harry, Ron, Hermione, Neville and Draco. She rounded the rest of the Gryffindor fourth years as well as the Ravenclaw fourth years. Gus had the Slytherin and Hufflepuff fourth years. They trekked to the castle. Dumbledore stood at the doors and let the children in. It was dark already. "Prefects, guide the students to their dorms. Head of houses account for your students. Sirius, you will account for Slytherin." Sirius then left for the dungeons.

"I want to see dad." Harry said at once.

Lily stalled him. "Go with your housemates. I will seek you once things are settle." Harry wanted to fight back but decided not to when his mother shook her head once more.

Lily Snape made her way to the infirmary and offered a shaky smile to her husband who looked pale on the infirmary bed.

"Where is Harry?" He asked when he saw her.

"He's safe, in his common room." Lily said and looked at the bandage, a cutting hex, too deep for her liking. Madame Pomfrey used dittany to close some of it. Lily undid the bandage and applied some more.

"It was Bagman's fault. He gambled money way and got himself in trouble with his debtors. The Lestranges offered money under different disguises and Ludo passed information." Severus began.

"They knew where the apparation points would be. Lily, they attacked muggle London. They targeted the muggle born parents. There are a few dead besides the Diggorys. It was all a distraction. Voldemort was never supposed to be in the pitch. Gus and Percy have worked together for months to uncover him and found the hiding place, an old manor property of Rabastan Lestrange. Voldemort decided to show up and face Dumbledore. His ego made him believe that it would be easy to subdue him." Severus pondered.

Lily poured the dittany and heard Severus attentively, "we dueled, until Albus joined me. He's powerful Lily but there was something off. He was unstable, his technique was off, as if unsure. He looked for ways to torture me but his energy was not there. Voldemort then left. He turned to the Diggorys and killed them in front of us and Fudge. The aurors apparated and they left."

Lily kissed his hands, "they all know now."

Severus nodded, "Albus sent aurors to find muggle survivors. Fudge will have to resign effective immediately. Skeeter is having a field day with all of this. She's asked for an interview, which of course I've refused."

"Rest please, just rest." She said and kissed his forehead, "we'll handle everything tomorrow." She smiled softly.

"I want to see Harry." Severus said "but I don't want him to see me like this. I want to go to our quarters."

Lily helped him and they walked out of the infirmary. Severus insisted he felt fine and was just tired. They showered together, Lily clung to him and kissed him softly over and over. "I am going to get Harry."

"Please do. I want him near us tonight." Severus said.

Lily Snape walked out of their quarters and walked to Gryffindor tower, "Lils" Percy called and caught up to her.

"How is he?" Her brother in law asked.

"Tired but in one piece." Lily replied as he hugged her.

"Tuney, dad and Dudley are in the Burrow. There were death eater sightings at mum's job." Lily's heart clenched.

"I would never let anything happen to them Lils. The ministry will have people follow them from now on. They want to cooperate with Sev." Augustus said carefully.

Lily was angry, "They want to cooperate huh, what about these past two years? Severus and Dumbledore have begged Fudge to listen to reason."

"It's not the time Lily. There will be new people in command." Augustus walked with her.

Lily did not want to argue. "I have to get your nephew."

Augustus nodded and went with her. "We have the name of the muggle parents. There were only three casualties, only two deaths."

Lily stopped, "all Gryffindor." She stated.

Gus nodded, "Professor McGonagall is talking to Hermione Granger, the Creevey brothers went home to see their father, he suffered a nasty shock and was hit with the cruciatus curse three times before the aurors could arrest Rosier once again."

Lily gasped, "the Grangers are dead?" She asked with sadness, she did not know them but she knew Hermione to be a nice and smart young lady. She was one of Harry's dearest friends.

Augustus nodded, "they were killed instantly, Dolohov used the killing curse."

Lily did not want to hear anymore. "Does the ministry know why?"

Her brother in law shook his head. "They are investigating."

Lily climbed the stairs and asked the Fat Lady to let her in, fortunately Augustus knew the password. The common room was packed with students. Minerva entered behind her, she was clearly affected.

"Students please, go to your dorms. The headmaster will address us all tomorrow morning." The children began to go up the stairs.

Harry and Ron remained back, "where is Hermione?" They asked immediately.

"She is on her way to London. Her parents were assassinated by death eaters." Ron paled and then balled his hands in anger.

"We want to see her. She doesn't have any family; her grandparents are dead. Her aunt died last year. It was just her and her parents." The redhead said quickly. "She needs us."

Minerva nodded, "Mr. Weasley, do not worry, I am sure Ms. Granger will appreciate all your concern but she now has to take care of some affairs. Mr. Lupin and your brother Percy will help her now."

"When is the funeral? She cannot be by herself now." Ron insisted.

"You will be notified as soon as she comes back to the castle." Minerva said kindly and then made to leave

"Aunt Lily please, Mione does not have anyone. We have to be there for her." Ron insisted.

"I will find out how she is Ron. Don't worry, go up to your dorm." She said and kissed his forehead. He was in love with Hermione that much was clear. It was obvious that he fancied Hermione after the Yule Ball fiasco but this need to make sure that she was fine was the final confirmation that it was not infatuation but love, pure and young.

Harry was very quiet, "Where is dad?" He said afraid of her answer. Lily hugged him tight. "I'm taking you to him."

They walked in silence and reached the dungeons quickly. Harry saw his father half asleep and smiled.

"I thought something happened to you." Harry said and hugged his father.

Severus shook his head, "nothing happened. We are all safe." He said carefully.

Harry frowned, "the Diggorys are dead and so are Hermione's parents."

Lily nodded. "Tonight was terrible Harry. We need you to be strong, there are going to be hard days from now on. These are dark times son and we have to be prepared."

Harry asked if he could stay with them that night. "sweetheart, we were not going to have you sleep in your dorm tonight." Lily said quickly. Harry slept on his room.

Severus was exhausted and so was she. Lily could not sleep, she did not cry but processed the day and thought of Hermione. She remembered losing her parents and the pain of having no one. It must be worse for the little girl. Lily had Tuney, although they were not on speaking terms per se she clung to the hope of having a relationship with her sister. Poor Hermione did not have even that. She would be alone in the world.