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Chapter One: The Letter
“Dear Elizabeth Potter,
I believe that Remus has sent you an owl concerning Sirius’s death. We all miss him greatly here, and hopefully we will soon have you among our number again. You should remember the promised you gave to come and teach if we couldn’t find anyone to teach, after Remus and Alastor taught and after a ministry official taught and completely disrupted the school, Voldemort had returned and we still didn’t have any one to teach? Well, Elizabeth. That time has come. Hogwarts needs you. Here in England and Scotland. Voldemort has returned and there is no one here to teach the students proper Defense Against the Dark Arts.
Sincerely, Albus Dumbledore”
Elizabeth sighed as she reread the letter. So Remus and Moody have taught and left. Well, she knew Moody hadn’t really taught, but it remained the same to her.
She groaned as she placed her head in her hands. “Here in Scotland” Dumbledore had written. Elizabeth knew what he meant. He meant that trying to recruit foreigners for the Order wasn’t what he needed her to do. But that meant she had to return to Hogwarts. Returning to England would be hard enough, but Hogwarts? The place absolutely reeked of memories she would rather not think of. Not that they weren’t pleasant. Just every thing that had happened since then hurt.
Elizabeth took a deep breath to steady herself, then she whispered, “I don’t have a choice, besides, I’m a Potter, born and raised. I’ve practically been bred to face this, it seems. Well, that’s the way James always put it, ‘Just because it hurts, Eliza, doesn’t mean I won’t face it. Stand strong, my dear sister. Stand strong until we meet again.’”
But that had been the last time they’d seen each other. Two weeks later, James was dead and Elizabeth had sent the letter to Dumbledore promising that, not thinking it would happen, half hoping it wouldn’t.
But now the time had come for Elizabeth to return. She couldn’t very well take back her promise to Dumbledore, she owed to much to him. Her reply to Dumbledore was:
“Dear Professor Dumbledore,
I’ll take the position as Defense Against the Dark Arts, as I promised many years ago. I can’t promise that I will turn the pupils in to Aurors and dueling champions, but I will teach them to the best of my ability, I can promise you that.
That looked about right. Of course, it didn’t hold much feeling in it, but she wasn’t a brilliant writer, so it was the best they were going to get.
Dumbledore’s reply came quickly.
Excellent. I had hoped you would keep your word despite everything else. I will need you in Hogwarts by August twenty-ninth. Do not stop at Order headquarters, unless you wish to meet your nephew. You may if you so wish, but he’s there until the beginning of term.
At the bottom, there was a post script, “As you are to be a teacher at Hogwarts, we should be on a first name basis.”
Despite herself, Elizabeth had to laugh at that, as she sat in her dimly lit kitchen at the small table. Dumbledore had called Elizabeth Elizabeth since she had first spoken to him, and Remus had sent her a letter explaining how Dumbledore had finally gotten him to call him Albus.
“I don’t call Professor Dumbledore Albus all the time, still now, but it seems to amuse him quite a bit, I’m not the only one, Hagrid doesn’t often call him Albus either, he doesn’t quite find it respectful enough, and you know Hagrid, he’s quite protective of the man.”
Elizabeth slid out of her thoughts and looked around the small room. It, like the rest of the house was small and rather shabby. Elizabeth didn’t lack money, she just never wanted to place down a permanent home down until she was married, but that wasn’t likely as she didn’t get close to anyone since her brother and sister-in-law’s death. She had left the country shortly before then, as James had sent her away, afraid that if she didn’t leave, she was going to be endangered.
She had left reluctantly, looking back all the while. Now, nearly fifteen years later, she sat holding the letter sending her back. It wasn’t from James, as he’d promised to write to her to bring her back and now he wasn’t living.
She thought of her job. The position had been rumored to be jinxed for as long as she could remember, but at the times of the war, the position had been harder to fill than it had been in the gap between the war because people had been afraid that if they were filling that position, they were in more danger than if they weren’t. Of course, Elizabeth knew that, and now that it came time to be the one filling that position, she found she didn’t care.
Chapter Two: Going Back to The Leaky Cauldron
Elizabeth looked around the old pub. She was looking to see if there was anyone familiar. No one, except the bartender was. She pulled both of her trucks out of the fireplace all the way and set them to the side of it. She went over to Tom and got herself a room for the night as she gazed around the pub. It hadn’t really changed since her last visit. Even the atmosphere was the same, a sort of wary casualness to it that often accompanied the war.
She walked up to Tom, the bartender and got a room. He glanced up at her oddly when she told him her name to put on the register.
“Potter, eh? Haven’t seen you in a long while. In fact I’ve seen your nephew several times since you left and he was getting his school things! You left before James and Lily...”
“Yes,” Elizabeth answered quickly, not wishing to discuss it already. She was trying to adjust, and she had just gotten there a matter of moments before.
The old bartender nodded, “Will you help me get your things up to your room? That way you won’t have to worry about anything happening to them.”
Elizabeth nodded as she eyed the pub quickly once more. “Yes, I will. You don’t have any employees?”
“We have three doing the food and one serving it. What with magic, you know we don’t really need many. We also have two freed house-elves here, cleaning . Good thing that they’re free or we might lose them do to people leaving their clothes behind.”
They went and took her trunks to room six quite quickly as both of them had levitated the trunks.
Back in the noisy pub, Elizabeth ordered shepherd’s pie. She ate slowly as she looked carefully around the pub and listening to the conversations going on around her.
“I knew Fudge was lying to us all. He’s always been protective of his position,” said a brown haired wizard at the table to the right of hers.
“Well, I’m surprised he hasn’t lost his job, now that everyone knows that Fudge has called Dumbledore senile,” said a sensibly dressed witch next to the wizard.
The slightly older man at their table sighed and said sadly, “I suppose that Fudge won’t be able to get us through the up and coming war, now will he? But I doubt he’ll retire and allow someone more suited for the job to come forward.”
The brown haired wizard laughed softly, “You see that’s his fear.”
Elizabeth bit her lip as she listened, an old habit that she had had for nearly as long as she remembered. She diverted her attention to the table behind her, which she didn’t dare glance at as she was afraid to let anyone know that she was listening.
“I spoke with Molly this morning at the meeting, she said that he’s very quiet,” said the soft voice of a man.
“Quiet? He was quiet last year!” said a young woman’s voice quietly.
A deep voice answered, saying, “Yes, but now he’s very quiet.”
The woman’s voice said, “Was he always like that?”
“No,” answered the soft male voice, “He wasn’t ever this quiet. He does have reason to be.”
Elizabeth raised an eyebrow at her plate. She didn’t know who they were talking about. She quickly finished her food and stood up to go to her rooms for her key to Gringotts. She found it in her trunk in her money bag which had a few spare sickles in it. She had had just enough money in her pockets for the meal and the rooms.
She started down the stairs after locking her door behind her. At the foot of the stairs, she came face to face with someone. She eyed them closely and gasped.
Chapter Three: An Old Friend
The person stared at her for a few moments, and then gave her a startled smile and said, “Elizabeth Potter?”
She raised an eyebrow at the formality of this greeting and answered as calmly as she could muster, “Remus Lupin.”
Remus stared at her, apparently startled, then, “Eliza!”
“Remus!”, she replied, enthusiastically and hugged him tightly as she had when they had last seen each other.
But, things were different now. Remus looked a lot older than Elizabeth herself did. He had a couple of premature wrinkles and some gray hair. His eyes were sadder, and his face looked as if it had been arranged in a more solemn expression then it now held.
“So, now you’re back to England, and you didn’t owl me?”
“I’ve only been here less than an hour,” she protested as they walked toward her table.
“Yes, but no warning of it?”
“I- oh, sorry, I was kind of overwelmed about coming here and it kind of slipped my mind,” she said as she sat down at her table, and he sat at the table that had been behind her. She looked at the others there, realizing that it had been Remus’ voice that was the soft one. Also at the table was a young women with pink hair and a heart shaped face, and a black man with a gold earing.
“Why were you here, then, now?” she asked as she studied the strangers.
“Dumbledore said you would be arriving around this time, and he wants you to come with us, unless your going straight to Hogwarts. Besides, he thought I might want to see you again.”
“Dumbledore, he tends to do that type of thing, doesn’t he?”
He nodded and then jumped, “I haven’t introduce you all, have I?”
The young woman laughed and grinned, “No, you haven’t, but we can do it ourselves since you’ve forgotten your manners. I’m Tonks, just call me Tonks,” she said firmly.
“Nice to meet you Tonks. Wait, is your mother Andromeda?”
Tonks grinned, “Yes, she is.”
The other man grinned, “And I’m Kingsley Shacklebolt. You are?”
“Oh, I’m Elizabeth. Elizabeth Potter.”
“I see, are you related to young Potter?”
“Yes, she is,” said Remus, “He’s her nephew.”
“He doesn’t know you, does he?”
Elizabeth shook her head and studied the chair she was sitting sideways in, “No, I left before... that night, and this is my first time back. I’ll be teaching Defense Against the Dark Arts.”
“Good luck,” said Tonks fervently.
“I taught and I lived,” Remus pointed out.
“Yes well the past few years haven’t been so lucky! Last year, Umbridge got attacked by centaurs. The year before that, Mad-Eye was stuck in his trunk for ten months and the imposter was Kissed. Before that, Remus taught and resigned. Before that, Lockhart lost his memory, and before that, Quirrell died.”
“Comfort her, why don’t you, Tonks,” said Kingsley smiling slightly, “But, of course, I agree with one part, good luck.”
“Eliza, are you going with us or are you going straight to Hogwarts?”
Chapter Four : Part one
A/N: I just realised I hadn't posted in a while, so here it is, if only it's half. Please post feedback!
Chapter Four: Part One
Elizabeth looked down and carefully examined the floor, “I’m going to Hogwarts, Remus. At least after I pick up a few books from Florish & Blotts. I’m going to get my office set up. Besides I-I have a few boxes to look through,” when she looked up, she noticed Remus looking tired.
He sighed, “Liz, we can’t do it alone.”
She gave a half-groan and said stubbornly, “I can.”
He smiled at her faintly, “You may, although I doubt it, Liz. But we can’t.”
“Who is we?” she asked, emphasizing ‘is’.
“Better not be me.”
“Oh, it isn’t. But of course, he’s managing better than I had hoped. Or at least he’s pretending to. But his friends must be helping him. At least with Sirius.”
She understood and looked back down and whispered, “I’m not ready. Sorry, I’m just... not.”
“That’s okay, but eventually he’ll find out who you are, or he’ll have an idea. He seems to have that talent.”
“I’ll tell him Remus, and I’ll tell him as soon as I can. But I have to adjust, Remus. I have to. I can’t do anything like this before I do. You should know that,” she said, seriously, emphasizing each work slowly.
“I do Liz, but really, he needs someone.”
“Why not you?”
Remus shrugged and gave her a sad smile, “Because it’s your obligation. If not to Harry, then to James. And if not to James, then to Lily.”
She stared at him as though he grew a second head.
“Honestly Liz, they wouldn’t have wanted either of you to stay alone.”
“I’m not alone, and neither is he.”
“Technically, you are.”
“But, technically, we aren’t.”
“You’re being difficult.”
“I know I am,” she replied calmly.
Chapter Four: Part Two
A/N:Here's the second half. Please post feedback!
Remus sighed and stood up, followed by Tonks as she brushed her pink hair lightly with her hand, and Kingsley. Elizabeth stood up quickly.
“Well,” Remus said quietly, “If you won’t come to...er, I mean, with us, then will you come sooner or later?”
“I’ll come later,” she said firmly.
“Really? Well you probably don’t want to wait to meet Sirius’ mum, do you? I mean you could come with us, meet her, meet the lovely houself ,you wouldn’t believe his manners, and a few others. Then you could go to Hogwarts,” said Tonks cheerfully.
Remus snorted and Shaklebolt hid a grin with his hand. Eliza crooked an eyebrow at her, and answered rather sarcastically, “Oh, that sounds like a wonderful proposition, but I must pass. I’ve heard about the elf and Mrs. Black, and I must say, I need to get adjusted first, before I meet two such interesting people. Sort of.”
Tonks glanced at Remus who said quickly, “ I didn’t tell her about them that much, but she heard plenty at school about them, and at her home when Sirius went to live with them. She’s also heard about Kreacher’s partial responsibility with... with what happened with Sirius.”
Tonks nodded. Eliza grimanced and said, “I’ve got to get my books before the shops close, I suppose. So, goodbye.”
Tonks grinned, “’Bye.”
Remus gave her a smile and hugged her, saying, “Keep out of trouble, Liza.”
She rolled her eyes at him and grinned saying, “I’m a Potter, that’s impossible.”
Remus laughed, slightly sadly, “Don’t I know it.”
Kingsley Shacklebolt shook her hand a said, “Goodbye,” rather solemnly.
She waved to them and went into the empty back of the pub, out side, then up to the stone wall and stared at it for a moment. This place reminded her of one thing that had happened when she was young. Here she had been when she first heard of Lord Voldemort. Then, people didn’t fear the name, but that didn’t last very long. She had been here, about to go in during the summer before her first year, and then her father had tapped her mother on the shoulder and whispered, hoping the children did not hear (although they did), “A man has just murdered a large group people just outside of here, a dark wizard, who said he was ‘Lord Voldemort’.” But today, there was no shouting, no father running to see if his wife and children were okay, just her, alone, staring at a wall she had stared at many times. She took out her wand and tapped the wall. It became an entry way, and she went in, looking around.
Chapter Five: WWW and Diagon Alley
The cobblestone street, with all of the shops on either side, the people jostling to get to their destinations, the talking, the laughter, all brought Eliza out of her memories. She made a beeline for Gringotts, for her vault still held her gold, and the amount she had was not going to be enough for her books and her other shopping.
She passed Flourish & Blotts, cauldron stores, the apothecaries, the ice cream shops, the quidditch shops, the menageries, what looked to be a joke shop called Weasley’s Wizard Wheezes, the robe shops, Ollivanders, and several other places, as she glanced at each of them and noted where she was going to stop at.
Once she got to the white marble building of Gringotts, she stopped a goblin to take her to her vault. Through the wild ride she went, and stopped at her vault, which the goblin unlocked. Through the gloom, she peered in, and gathered a bag full, which she stuck in her pocket. And with a parting glance, she got in to the cart, and enjoyed the ride back up.
Squinting through the sunlight, she quickly found a robe shop. She got three robes, as her robes were rivaling Remus’s in condition. Next she stopped at the joke shop she had earlier spied. She had shared her brother’s love of pranks and had been in the other joke shop she had seen, but had never seen this one in her life, so decided to stop in.
The joke shop had a few people in it, two red-haired young men who were identical to each other, one behind the counter and one roaming among the customers with a grin on his face; a red haired girl, about fifteen years of age, apparently their sister, was helping them; a red haired women over seeing the customers; and a father and his daughter looking at a package labeled “Canary Creams; two sixteen year old boys, one black and the other sandy haired gathering up packages under a signed labeled “Skiving Snack boxes” and a rather round-faced sixteen year old boy talking to the fifteen-year old girl helping her brothers.
As Elizabeth closed the door behind her, a bell tinkered, and the twin that was roaming around turned to her, grinning, saying, “Welcome to the Weasley’s Wizard Wheezes! I’m Fred!”
Elizabeth smiled back and said, “Thanks,” and looked at the nearest packages to her.
They were fireworks, and it said on the sign slightly beneath them that they could last for several weeks, even months, unless properly stopped, but that they would multiply when being hexed. She picked up a package and examined it. She turned to Fred, and said, “Do these truly work?”
But, it was the sixteen year old boy, talking to the girl, who answered, “Do they ever! They used them to drive out last Defense Against the Dark Arts out!”
Elizabeth stared. “Just the fireworks drove her out?”
The boy shook his head, “No, but that was just one of the things. She was driven out by centaurs, the poltergeist, the twins,” he gestured to Fred and his brother behind the counter, “and their pranks.”
She raised an eyebrow at Fred, who said, “She was trying to take over Hogwarts and we had to act!”
Elizabeth grinned at him and said, “Well, if these work the way that they’re supposed too, I wish my brother and his friends could have seen this.”
“Who’s your brother? And why can’t he see this?” piped up the girl.
Elizabeth sighed, “He’s dead.”
Fred looked at her sadly, “I’m sorry.”
Eliza smiled sadly, “You didn’t kill him. Unless your Voldemort, you didn’t kill him.”
Fred winced and Elizabeth gave him a look.
She began to wander some more, and came face to face with the woman.
“Hello, I’m Molly Weasley.”
“Hi! I’m... I’m Elizabeth.”
Molly gave her an odd look and smiled, “I’m Fred, George and Ginny’s mum.”
Elizabeth nodded, “Apparently they like to cause trouble.”
She laughed, “They do.”
Elizabeth picked up one of the sheets of parchment, which apparently was bewitched so that the person writing on it’s ink would not ever dry and would smear. Then the names of these people registered.
“You know Remus, don’t you?”
Molly looked startled. “Yes.”
“Well, did he say he had to meet an Elizabeth today?”
“Actually, yes, he did.”
“Oh! Welcome home, then!”
“You’re welcome. Are you coming with them?”
“No, I’m going straight to Hogwarts tomorrow.”
“Are you? Well, that’s nice. Good luck. I mean, the Defense teachers never last long.”
“Thank you, I’m sure I’ll need it.”
Molly smiled, and said, “Are you stocking up so you can fight the students back?”
“No, I’m stocking up for defense. The need for pranks runs in the family.”
A/N: Please Post feed back! And also, this will start picking up very soon, trust me!
Chapter Six: The Hogwarts Headmaster
Molly smiled slightly at this proclamation, “Does it?”
“Yes, it does.” Elizabeth’s hazel eyes were dancing.
“Well, then I won’t question that.”
“You best not, I mean, you never know when a pocket full of jokes and pranks will save your life,” she said solemnly.
“Truly?” asked Molly, suddenly looking startled.
“Ask your children.”
Molly stared at Eliza for a long time before she turned and called Fred to her. She replayed what Elizabeth had said to her, and asked what she had told her too.
“So, is it true?”
“Mum, what’s gotten into you? You’re acting... odd.”
Molly sighed, and said looking at Elizabeth and Fred, “Yes, I know. It’s just... all that’s going on, I’m allowed to be worried.”
Elizabeth left the shop ten minutes later with a sack full of jokes and a grin on her face. Neville, the boy who had been talking to the girl called Ginny, had accidentally set of a package of firecrackers. How he had managed that feat was beyond Elizabeth.
Elizabeth’s next stop was Flourish & Blotts, where she picked up the books she would need.
After that, she went back into the Leaky Cauldron and collapsed on the bed, tired, but full of thought.
It took her over an hour and a half to fall asleep, as she was thinking of all that had happened that day, starting from when she dragged the trunks into the fire, ending with her watching one of her future students accidentally set of a group of firecrackers.
The next morning she woke up at eight. It was later than she usually did, but not too late. As she dragged her self out of bed, there was a knock on the door. When Elizabeth got to the door, Tom gave her a tray of tea and toast and a grin.
Elizabeth set the tray on her bedside table and took a piece of toast off the plate. As she ate it, she walked to the window and stared out, into muggle London.
After she had finished eating, she put on one of her new robes and put away her old, worn one, and put her shopping into the emptier of the two trunks. She levitated one, and dragged the other down, out of her room and down the stairs. She checked out with Tom, and dragged the trunks back to the fire.
“Will you need any help, Miss Potter?” he inquired softly.
“No, thank you Tom. I managed to get these half way across the world, nearly, I can get these to Hogwarts.”
“Very well, Miss Elizabeth, stay safe.”
“You too, Tom. You too,” she took a pinch of the floo powder out of a small pouch in her pocket, and whispered, “Staff Room, Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry.” She stepped into the fire and was gone.
When she got out of the fire, she dragged her trunks out and dusted herself off quickly. The ash came off freely. She straightened up and gazed around the room. She was alone, so she left the trunks by the fire, and opened the door and stepped out.
“Well, well, well,” said one of the statues, peering at her.
“Where have you come from?” asked the other.
“A place you will never go,” said Elizabeth, slightly annoyed.
“Ah, you’re probably right. They won’t let us leave. We’ve been here for about 976 years.”
“Is that when this was built?” she asked excitedly.
“Oh, no! We replaced these two dimwits who let in a large group of rowdy students.”
“Oh. Well, I’d better go. Goodbye,” and with that she walked down the corridor. Those statues were rather odd, she realized. They seemed rather bad tempered to a point, but bored also. She had encountered them once in her third year, but they had been arguing so much that they barely noticed her.
When she got to the gargoyle blocking the headmasters office. She stared at it for a moment and then looked down the corridor one way, then the other. Standing there, was Dumbledore.
“Professor!” she gasped in surprise.
“Hello Elizabeth, I presume your trip was fine?” Dumbledore asked smiling. He turned to the statue and said calmly, “Chocolate Frogs.”
As the gargoyle jumped to the side, revealing a moving spiral staircase he said, “I was going to do one of the Weasley’s creations, but I’ll wait until next year. They’re so new, and just causing a ruckus, it’s best not to remind anyone just yet,” he winked at her as the stepped on to the stairs. They were spun slowly until they reached the door.
They went into the office. Dumbledore sat behind the desk and gestured to a chair, “Please sit, Elizabeth.”
She met his eyes as she sat down.
He looked at her carefully for a moment, in one of those penetrating stares Elizabeth had gone through several times.
“Well, I see your taking this job,” said Dumbledore.
“What choice did I have? I promised I would.”
“Yes, but the conditions you gave were rather...different.”
Elizabeth met his eyes and said, calmly, “Remus promised he would teach as soon as the danger became more clear, that the Dark was growing stronger. Alastor Moody promised he would teach after Remus did, and after the signs that the Dark was about to rise to power. I promised I would teach after they did. I also set the condition that you had to have a year when the ministry had to send you a teacher first. I preferred to clean up their mess than not.”
“You always preferred to prove the ministry wrong,” observed Dumbledore.
“I did and I had reason to.”
“Well, now we’ve established that, next order of business. Your cat.”
“My cat?” Elizabeth stared at him for a moment, the realized, “Oh! My cat!”
“Yes. Your cat had kittens shortly after you left, after the caretaker’s cat died.”
Elizabeth grinned, “Miss Petulina died?! Wonderful!”
Dumbledore raised an eyebrow at her. She blushed, “I-I mean, how sad.”
“Well, Mrs. Figg gave him one of the kittens, who he named Mrs. Norris.”
“Did he? He always had a weird sense in names for kittens.”
“That would be a matter of opinion,” said Dumbledore sternly, “But, never-mind. Mrs. Figg has become quite attached to your cat, but will be willing to give you a kitten of one of her other cats.”
Elizabeth nodded, “I might as well.”
“Good, I’ll send her an owl, letting her know, so she can bring the kitten up to Hogsmeade.”
“Next order, your name.”
Elizabeth looked up in surprise, “What about my name?”
“Elizabeth, you know as well as I do, that you can’t go around as Professor Potter.”
She raised an eyebrow, “And why not?”
“You can’t because Mr. Potter is unaware of your existence and he would be rather shocked to hear of you in such a way. Also, you know the gossip it would cause.”
“Gossip? That’s why you don’t want me to use my real name?”
“No, not just that. It’s also that, the Death Eaters and Voldemort would be rather interested to know that Elizabeth Potter is back in Hogwarts. You’d be used as a lure for Harry, and you’re wanted for other reasons besides you know of what I speak.”
Elizabeth looked at the desk, remembering all that he was talking about. “Who should I go as? By what name, I mean.”
“Your mother’s maiden name. Smythe.”
“Yes, Smythe. Will that be okay?”
“I would prefer... yes. That would be fine.”
“Also, only Professors McGonagol, Flitwick, and Sprout know who you really are. Hagrid knows also. I would prefer if you told Severus Snape yourself.”
“Snape?” Elizabeth stared at him in surprise.
“Yes. He needs to hear it from you.”
“All right. Anything else Professor?”
“No, Elizabeth, you may go if you wish.”
And she did.
Chapter Seven: Memories
A/N: Please post feedback!
Elizabeth went straight to the staff room, where she saw that her things were no longer there, so she went to check to see if they were in her quarters, which they were. She began to unpack, which she had already reckoned would be a long process, and as she hadn’t gone through one of her trunks in years, five, actually, when she had gone in quickly to pull something out and put it back in, it was likely to be rather memory provoking. She started with her smallest trunk, which was very quick and rather easy to go through as she had just packed it yesterday.
It was mostly robes and things that she put away rather quickly. Then she turned to her other trunk and glared at it. This would take a while.
She knelt down by it and lifted it up onto the bed. After she had down that, she unlocked the trunk and undid the buckles and clips. Then, she opened it. Most of the things were wrapped with brown paper, which had her handwriting scrawled on it. She picked up the small round package on the top, and opened it. It was a rememberall that James had given to her before she had left, when she was running around thinking she had forgotten half of her things.
Next was a large envelope filled with parchment. Letters. Tons of them. She pulled one out. It had Lily’s handwriting, and it was dated the thirtieth of October. She unfolded it carefully, and read:
I’m glad to hear you found a place to stay so quickly. After you left, James was pacing back and forth and wouldn’t relax for about an hour. He kept muttering something about how he shouldn’t have made you leave, but then he would say how glad he was you were gone. He was rather relieved to find that you were just fine. I hate to say it, Liz, but you have an over-protective brother. Stay safe, don’t let the muggles mug you (that’s from James, in case you can’t tell), and gah (from your nephew, who keeps repeating that).
Lily & James
Elizabeth smiled despite of herself. She remembered receiving that and laughing, but getting another letter and day later telling her that they were dead. Eliza swallowed and slid the letter back into the over filled envelope, when another short note slid out. She glared at it, but then picked it up and unfolded it.
Lily and James are dead! Sirius has obviously turned on us and I can’t find Peter! If he’s done anything stupid.... I’m sorry Elizabeth, can’t write much more, Dumbledore’s just come to get me and I’d prefer to post this before I go, just in case.
It was hurriedly written with blotches of ink all over. There was what looked like spilled ink on one corner.
Elizabeth slid that back into the envelope with it’s partners, determinedly not thinking of what had gone on when she had received this letter, but it didn’t work to well. She had stared at the letter, leaped up, and run to the fireplace pulling her cloak along with her, when she had gotten a letter from Dumbledore telling her to stay there until further notice, where she had nearly lost it.
Elizabeth quickly conjured a small wooden box and placed the envelope in it, closed the box and set it on a shelf.
She turned to the trunk and pulled out a messily rewrapped package. Eliza carefully unwrapped it and revealed a photo album and a box of photos. She grinned slightly to herself. She had gotten these out about five years ago, answering a plea for letters from a certain Hagrid. She opened the photo album and found a display of baby pictures of her, and of James. She flipped through the earlier pictures, as she had no recollection of these, there wasn’t really any pain along with them until she flipped to a page with her brother, James having his hand on her shoulder as she smiled shyly at the camera. They had been close, especially when they were young. When they got to Hogwarts, they were distanced a little more, but not too much.
She closed the book and set it on the shelf, with the box of pictures on top of the box of letters.
She found a gift from James she had gotten when she was fifteen, a book titled, “Everything You Had to Learn for School, but Never Wanted to Know. Sixty million utterly useless facts never needed in real life.”
She laughed softly, and placed this on the shelf. She continued, stopped only a few times by her memories, but she finally finished.
As she was putting her trunk away, there was a knock on the door. She went over and opened it to see a long nosed, greasy haired, sallow skinned man.
“Who are you?” he demanded.
“Snape?!” she asked in surprise.
“Are you really?!” he asked in horror.
“You’re Severus Snape!”
“Yes, I am. And I don’t feel like talking to a relative, so good bye,” Severus Snape shut the door, looking bewildered.
Elizabeth stared at the door, trying to figure out what happened. Then she realized, “Oh, come back here!” she shouted out the door.
The man glared over his shoulder, but came anyway.
“I am not a Snape. I was asking if you were. Honestly, your people skills are obviously limited!” she exclaimed in disgust.
“Well, you don’t see me throwing people out Miss....”
“Professor,” she corrected sharply.
“Fine, Professor who then?”
“I’m Professor Smythe.”
“You’re the one he took on for this job instead of me?” he asked coldly.
“I am. Anything wrong with that?”
“Perhaps. Do you have a first name?”
“Yes I do. Why, are you suddenly Hogwarts high inquisitor?” she snapped.
“No, that was Umbridge,” he said raising an eyebrow coldly.
“Really? Hogwarts had an inquisitor? I thought I was just making that up,” she said thoughtfully.
“Yes, where have you been?” he said staring at her.
“A different country, for several years.”
He nodded, and then said, “You’re not a Smythe, are you?”
She stared, “I beg your pardon?”
He studied her carefully for a moment, “Dumbledore told me you weren’t who you are going by, on his orders. So who are you?”
“Elizabeth, and must I tell you the last name, Mr. Snivellus?” she asked calmly.
He gaped, “Potter?” he asked when he was finally able to speak.
“Yes, that would be me. Any problems?” she asked, sweetly.
He looked at her carefully, “I don’t suppose.”
“Good, then. I’ll see you later, Professor Severus Snape.”
“Unless I see you first,” he muttered.
She smiled sweetly. He glowered.
As Elizabeth closed the door, she smirked. Snape had always disliked her, just for the fact her brother was James Potter. But they had ended up in a spot of trouble, about sixteen, seventeen years ago, together, during which they had nearly been killed, but even though they had been forced to not fight for a while, they had been glad to resume their rivalry immediately after the incident.
Chapter Eight: Part one: 12 Grimmauld Place
The next weeks flew by quickly. She alerted Professor McGonagol on what books she wanted for her students, and she began her lesson planning. She organized her office and quarters and took care of her classroom. She wandered the hallways, lost in thought and memories. She met Remus in Hogsmeade once and spoke with him for a long period of time.
On September the first, Professor Dumbledore alerted her that he would want her at the Order meeting that day, which started at ten-thirty. Elizabeth had nodded and said that that would be fine with her, but fifteen minutes later, she was pacing her office, half scared to death. She may have to meet Harry, and a confrontation was too soon, especially now. Of course, she would only have about fifteen minutes if she were to talk to him, and those would be in the Order meeting. Still.... she paced quicker.
She prepared for the trip and eventually stepped into a fire as she said, “Number Twelve, Grimmauld’s Place!”
It was ten fifteen. She was a bit early, but she had wanted to get the arrival over.
A red headed boy of about sixteen ran into the kitchen yelling “Mum!”
Elizabeth turned to face him, and she watched the utter surprise register on his face.
“You’re.... Who are you?”
Elizabeth raised a calm eyebrow and said, “I’m Professor Smythe.”
The boy stared at her, “Oh,” he said quietly.
Liza smiled slightly, “Yes, and you are?”
The boy blinked, “Ron Weasley.”
“Pleasant to meet you, Ron.”
The boy nodded and glanced toward the door and back at her.
“You can go find your Mum,” Elizabeth told him.
“Err... Goodbye, then.”
When Ron had left, Elizabeth looked around the kitchen. It was the way Sirius had described it. Exactly. She sighed and left the kitchen, looking around. She got to the dining room next, where a black and messy-haired boy sat, talking with Remus.
Elizabeth swallowed and stepped out of the shadows as Ginny walked into the room. She saw Elizabeth first and smiled at her. Remus and the boy turned to look at her when they noticed this.
“Morning, Liz!” Remus said in surprise, checking his watch, “Your early!”
Despite her conscious awareness that the boy was looking at her curiously, Elizabeth smiled, and nodded, “I had everything all set up for tomorrow, and I was rather.... restless so I came here early. Do you mind?”
Remus smiled at her response, “No, I don’t as a matter of fact. This is Ginny.” He gestured to her as he spoke.
Elizabeth smiled at Ginny, saying, “We’ve met.”
Remus nodded thoughtfully, “You have, haven’t you. Ah, well. This is Harry. Harry Potter,” he gestured to Harry.
“Good to meet you, Harry,” Elizabeth smiled, feeling nervous, “I’m Professor Smythe, I’m going to be your Defense Against the Dark Arts teacher this year.”
She could feel Remus’s stare and she turned her head slightly to look at him. She raised an eyebrow at him and he sighed and looked back at Harry, who was looking slightly startled. Elizabeth suddenly realized why. He wasn’t used to people he never met to act as if he were simply normal, not famous at all. She smiled reassuringly at, or at least she tried to, but she wasn’t so sure that it worked out right.
“He should to quite well in your class, Liz, he’s quite talented, like his parents,” Remus was saying, smiling at Harry as well.
Harry colored slightly and studied the ground, glancing at her.
Elizabeth studied him for a moment before answering. He met her eyes once more as she did this. She noted James’s black messy hair, the she also possess. She ignored his scar. His face was thin, like James and hers, but it was a bit thinner, due probably from lack of food. He didn’t have James’s nose, but a nose which was a bit like Lily’s father’s had been. His eyes were a replica of Lily’s, only sadder. They weren’t his father’s and her’s at all. He was as tall as his father had been. She noted that he didn’t hold himself with the confidence James had held his with, and took that as a good thing, as her brother’s over-confidence had been very annoying at times. Even so, he looked so much like his father it hurt, and she looked away, trying not to let tears come.
She looked back at Remus who looked back at her evenly. She checked her watch. 10. 28.
She cleared her throat, swallowing the beginning of a lump there, “Remus, the meeting will be starting real soon.”
Remus gave her a slightly disappointed look, “Well, if you wish. Good-bye Harry, ‘bye Ginny. Stay safe.”
Elizabeth nodded, smiling at the two before her, “I’ll see you at the feast I expect. Good-bye.”
“Good-bye,” the duo answered, echoing.
Elizabeth followed Remus to the next room, “Chicken, chicken, chicken,” he whispered, “We’ll be having the meeting in here.”
Elizabeth did one of the more juvenile things she had done in the past year, she stuck out her tongue and rolled her eyes.
Remus sighed when he spied this, “Come, my little friend, do not despair.” They walked through the doors between, and Liza glanced at the two behind them, they were looking surprised and amused at Liza’s childish behavior.
A/N: Sorry about the long time since my last posting. Please post feed back!
As they joined the others in the Order, Liza looked around at the group before them. Molly Weasley was hustling out a girl with bushy brown hair, and Ron. When they passed her, she whispered, “Welcome, I’ve got to take them to the station, but I’ll be back shortly.”
The meeting was brought to order, and a few members gave updates on their work for the order. Elizabeth didn’t exactly understand much as she hadn’t been to any Order meetings for fifteen years.
Tonks grinned at her from across the table. Snape was down near the end, and when Eliza glanced at him, he met her eyes and glowered. Remus was sitting next to her.
A woman across from Snape look suspiciously at Elizabeth, and when she finally spoke up said, “Who’s that ?”
Professor McGonagol spoke up quickly, “Elizabeth is going to be teaching Defense Against the Dark Arts. She was a member of the Order during the last war.”
“Was she? I don’t recognize her from the photograph that Alastor passed around last summer,” the woman said disbelievingly.
“She was already sent out of the country when that photograph was taken.”
“Was she? Well, then, carry on,” the woman waved dismissively.
The meeting was short, and rather empty feeling for Elizabeth. The last Order meeting had been like this, a bit subdued, yet there had been joking around from her brother and Remus and Sirius. Peter had been noticeably absent. Lily had let Elizabeth hold Harry, who had chattered unconcernedly and incomprehensibly.
As the meeting cleared out, the suspicious lady approached Elizabeth.
“Well, Elizabeth, will you be coming to the future meetings?” she asked stiffly.
Eliza’s answer was just as stiff in return, not that she had any grudge against this woman, but someone who speaks stiffly does not usually react well to normal talking, from her experience.
“Yes, I believe I will be,” Elizabeth nodded, and followed Minerva out of the room.
Remus sighed, “Well, I’m not sure why Dumbledore thought it was important for you to come to this meeting, of all of them.”
“I suppose he was trying to get me back to the meetings. I think he chose today in hope of a family reunion.”
Remus glanced at her, “You know, Liza, that’s not a bad idea.”
She rolled her eyes at him, “Time Remus, that’s all I want. Time.”
Remus laughed, “Good luck keeping him from finding out. Or one of his friends. Hermione Granger, you know, the girl with Molly when we got into the order meeting? Well, she found out I was a werewolf. She’s bound to find out something about you. Especially if you prove to be a mysterious character.”
Elizabeth spun around and looked at him sharply, “And do you consider yourself a mysterious character.”
Remus smiled, “No, Liza, I don’t, but she did, apparently.”
Elizabeth groaned and looked out the window.
“You do know, you can’t wait forever.”
“I wasn’t planning on it.”
Professor McGonagol picked up her cloak, “Elizabeth, we need to head back to Hogwarts. The students will be there shortly.”
With a jolt in her stomach, Elizabeth picked up her own cloak. Remus grinned and said softly, “Good luck,” as he hugged her.
Good luck with everything, Elizabeth knew that it meant. And she knew, she’d need it.
Elizabeth and Minerva used floo powder to reach Hogwarts. There was a staff meeting before the students arrived that would open the year for the teachers. As Minerva brushed herself off, and Elizabeth shook her robes, Snape , who apparently had preferred to floo to his office before walking up five stair cases, down one, and through four portraits instead of going with Minerva and Elizabeth, and the rest of the professors filed in through the door. Minerva took her seat next to Dumbledore, and Elizabeth took hers beside a rather disgruntled looking Trelawny and a cold looking Snape.
Dumbledore beamed at the teachers as if he were overjoyed at their presence. “Well, welcome, my dear professors. A new year is before us!” A few professors exchanged glances, some anxious, others amused. “We have a new professor among our ranks, Professor Elizabeth Smythe.” He gestured to Elizabeth, who gave a slightly sad smile. “Is there any business? Anyone?”
“When will we be getting out class schedules, Albus?” asked Elizabeth.
“Minerva,” said Professor Dumbledore, “I believe you possess them?”
Professor McGonagol nodded and stood, “I’ll hand them out,” she said quickly as she pulled out a small packet of papers.
When Minerva handed hers to her, she gulped. Her first class on Monday, tomorrow, was the Sixth year NEWTs. It was a double period. She glanced up at Dumbledore who gave her a look. So she bit her tongue and looked at the rest of that day. She’d also have the 1st year Gryffindors, the 7th year NEWTs, and 6th year Gryffindor and Ravenclaws.
Professor Dumbledore spoke just as she noticed the odd thing about her schedule, “Due to current events, Defense Against the Dark Arts will be taken by all students, including those in sixth and seventh year who will not be in NEWT Defense.”
Snape snorted, “Well, looks like you won’t even get to lose the idiots, Potter,” he whispered.
Elizabeth glared at him, “It’s Smythe,” she hissed, “ and I bet you’ve only got Slytherins in your NEWTs, idiots or no.”
Snape's eyes glittered, “Wrong there. I have students from every house. Including your insufferable nephew,” he said softly. He glanced at her schedule, “I see you have him tomorrow. He’s probably in your NEWT class, despite his idiocy. He’s always been a favorite.”
Elizabeth raised an eyebrow at him, daring him to continue. He must have noticed the look in her eyes, because he fell silent, with a smug smile on his face.
A/N: The next chappy will be up soon, promise. Please post feedback!
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Elizabeth watched as the students flooded into the Great Hall from her seat at the Staff Table.
Professor Sinistra looked at her carefully, “Nervous, are you?”
Eliza jumped and glanced at her, “A little,” she admitted.
She nodded, “I was too,” she said tiredly, “But, I was okay, and I’m sure you will be fine, even with...er... past difficulties.”
Elizabeth grinned at her colleague, who smiled in return.
Elizabeth looked over the bustling crowd. As student found their seats, Eliza found herself reminiscing over her past. She would always sit near her brothers and their friends, along with hers, especially Alice. Lily and her friends were always on their other side, close to them, but not so to the marauders. She remembered when James had dropped a bucket of paint over Lily’s head one year on accident. Lily had gotten extremely mad, and James had been extremely embarrassed, and everyone else couldn’t stop laughing.
As Elizabeth smiled at the memory, her eyes fell on a small group of Gryffindors she recognized. There was Harry, silent and drawn looking, while Ron Weasley and the brown haired girl. Ginny sat with them, as did Neville.
Neville looked up and met her eyes, apparently feeling her gaze. Elizabeth was suddenly struck by how familiar he looked. How much he looked like Alice. Of course, she thought, he must be her son. Poor boy, his mother in St. Mungos, along with his father.
Elizabeth gave him a small smile. Neville returned it. Just at that moment, the doors banged open, and the hall fell silent. Minerva led a group of anxious looking first years down the middle of the hall, toward the hat on the stool.
The Hat opened it’s rip-like mouth and began to sing.
Elizabeth didn’t noticed the song as she studied the group. No one too familiar, she thought, but maybe the names. She dwelled on this thought, and the noticed that the hat was singing:
“ And having that all said and done,
Let the sorting begin!”
Minerva unrolled her scroll and gave out the first name, “Archenbald, Claidissa!”
Claidissa stepped forward. She was a pretty girl, with long black hair and golden skin, as she sat on the stool, she studied her hands, until the hat blocked her view of them. Silence, then, “GRYFFINDOR!”
Gryffindor table erupted, all cheers and clapping. Claidissa looked immensely surprised as she leaped up and ran to the table, a smile on her face.
“One,” Elizabeth whispered, out of habit..
She counted every student sorted until she got to six. When she reached this number, she stilled and tensed up. Nothing. Then she realized she had taken up her old habit, that was no longer needed here. On the sixth student being sorted, her brother, his friends, and her would usually cause some sort of mayhem. But this year, it was just her, and there was no reason for her to do something. In her last year, James had whispered to her to set off the certain fireworks he gave her, but this year, all that happened was the sorting hat cried, “SLYTHERIN.” Elizabeth felt that something had to happen, so with her wand under the table, she conjured a large fireworks and set it to explode in the middle of the hall with out any trace of its origin. It did so, and a shower of green sparks rained down on the students and staff.
Professor McGonagol searched the hall. Ginny, Neville, Ron, Harry, and the girl, all exchanged amused glances. Minerva caught them at it, and she began to yell at them, in the middle of the hall about their lack of “decorum”. Elizabeth decided that they shouldn’t be in trouble, and the fireworks hadn’t been enough, so she shot up another one. As purple sparks rained down on them, Snipe raised an eyebrow at her, and shook his head. She heard him mutter, “Once a Potter, always a Potter.” Elizabeth gave him a sweet smile. He glowered at her.
Confused, and rather angry, Professor McGonagol continued the sorting. As she did, Elizabeth thought.
Well, the fireworks had been her way of.... honoring, perhaps, James and Sirius. It had just seemed like, to her, to continue the tradition had been natural. And of course, she had a sort of habit to make complete mayhem and mischief where ever she went. She had gotten that habit off of her brother.
Dumbledore stood up at the end of the sorting, “I believe that we have waited long enough for this feast, so let it begin!”
The food was marvelous. As the food appeared, and the noise level shot up, Elizabeth put the things nearest her on her plate. Mash potatoes, steak, and stew, gravy. All was delicious, and gone much to soon. Dessert was the same. Elizabeth let tarts and ice cream round our her meal. At the end of the feast, Dumbledore stood up, and beamed to the students, “How wonderful it is to see you all here, once more, or, in some cases, for the first time. Another year awaits us. Our new Defense Against the Dark Arts teacher is Professor Smythe.” The staff began to clap, and the students halfheartedly joined in. Elizabeth looked around the Great Hall during this. She noticed that everyone was eying her suspiciously. She didn’t exactly mind, as she had a feeling that her position was filled and refilled so often, no one really cared anymore.
“The forest is off limits to everyone,” said Professor Dumbledore rather sternly, “A few older students should be reminded of this,” he looked pointedly in the direction of Harry and his friends. Elizabeth grinned at that. There were a few other announcements, but nothing really important. He dismissed the students. As the students filed out, Snape yawned.
“Well that was a waste of time,” he muttered.
She looked at him sternly, “School functions are important,” she said despite her own lack of confidence on that subject, “and it’s best you participate.” Snape rolled his eyes.
When Elizabeth headed down to her office, she noticed a dark figure following her. She turned around, and called to Snape, “Is there some reason you’re following me?”
He glowered. “I’m just making sure you don’t get lost. It’s dangerous to walk these halls at night.”
“Oh, ha.” She said sarcastically, “Like you’d care if I got eaten by a snake or something.”
Snape studied her, “Well, no, I wouldn’t, really,” he admitted, “But, I must point out that Potter and his friends do wander around at night, and despite how likely you are to favor them...”
Snape grinned at that, “Just to warn you, they have Potter’s father’s cloak, and all, so be careful.”
She caught what he was going at, “Thanks, I’ll keep that in mind.”
Snape nodded, and turned around and left. Just then she noticed a red haired girl hurrying in the direction of Gryffindor Tower.
Elizabeth yawned and stood up, running her fingers through her hair. She looked out her window to see a misty morning, with the wind stirring the branches of the trees, and yellowing east sky of the nearing dawn.
Elizabeth got dressed in plain, black robes and pulled a brush through her misbehaving hair. It always was messy and untamable. Elizabeth usually didn’t try to do too much with it, and just left it down. When I start working on dueling with the students, Elizabeth thought, then I’ll have to pull it back. For now it will be okay like this.
Elizabeth got to the Great Hall rather early, before most of the students and over half the staff. Minerva was there, eating her porridge tiredly and scanning the hall for any mischief makers.
Eliza sat beside her, smiling slightly. Memories of breakfasts past slid past each other, each far different than the last. Minerva looked up.
“My,” she said, stifling a yawn, “You’re up early, aren’t you?”
“What about you?” Eliza said, rather amused.
“I hand out the schedules later, so I have to eat now, if ever.”
Eliza smiled at that.
Minerva looked her way, “Why are you up now, anyway? I would have thought you’d be down in something more like a half-hour.”
Elizabeth paused, then said, “I couldn’t sleep anymore.”
Professor McGonagol nodded, “Oh.”
Elizabeth glanced down.
Professor McGonagol spoke up suddenly, “Elizabeth, after you left, what did you do for your job?”
Elizabeth sighed, “I worked in their ministry, their wizard one.”
Minerva choked, “You- you what!?”
Eliza laughed, “Yes, I worked for a ministry.”
Minerva shot her a look, “Well, that was unexpected of you.”
Elizabeth smiled reminiscently, “Yes, it was. I couldn’t exactly find any other jobs at the time. I quit after a year, they were getting too curious about my origins for their -and my- own good.”
Minerva nodded, “Then?”
“I worked for one of the schools for five years.”
Minerva shot her a look.
“I was teaching Defensive Skills and Charms. That’s what they called it. Then I worked in the equivalent of Zonkos here, for three years. For the last six, I worked in a muggle inn.”
Minerva stared at the last one.
“I had to cover my tracks,” Elizabeth explained, “And working at Lotches & Snorts was too.... reminding.”
Minerva frowned at that statement, “You know, Eliza... You’ve got to face it sooner or later, you can’t hide from it,” she lectured.
Elizabeth felt her temper attempt to rise in her, “I’m not hiding from it,” she said in a sharp whisper. “If I was, would I be here, of all places? That all wasn’t my only reasons for quitting that job. The man who owned it was too...” Elizabeth puzzled for the word.
“Too... up close and personal.”
Minerva blinked, “Could you explain?”
“Oh, in the last year, he continually asked me on dates, and tried to find out who I was, where I was from, and that sort of thing.”
Minerva nodded. “Did you go by your name?”
“Nope. I used Scuplter for it.”
She nodded, "I see," she said as Professor Sinistra sat down near them, "Well, Elizabeth, it's good to know that you do have some experience in teaching." Then, Minerva sighed and stood up. “I have to pass out schedules.”
Elizabeth nodded and looked out into the growing group of students. At the Slytherin table, the hard faced, vicious looking students glowered at most people that went by. The Ravenclaw’s were chatting merrily, and a group of Hufflepuffs were laughing about something. Over at the Gryffindor’s table, Elizabeth could see Ginny, Ron, Harry , and the brown-haired girl talking. They were at the end nearest the staff table, extremely close to where Elizabeth was sitting. Elizabeth listened to their conversation, a talent that had been very useful when she had helped the “Marauders” with their pranks.
The brown-haired girl was speaking, “Well, we shouldn’t drop to conclusions, just because-”
“Hermione,” interrupted Ron, “She knows about the cloak. That’s just... weird.”
“She’s friends with Lupin,” spoke up Ginny.
Harry frowned at the table.
“What terms is she on with Snape?” asked Hermione.
Ginny bit her lip, “I’m not sure. The way they were talking, it seemed like they didn’t like each other at all, but he followed her up there to tell her about the cloak. He said something strange too. It was something about her being likely to favor us.”
Ron looked bewildered, “Why would she?”
Ginny shrugged, “I’m not sure. She knew Harry’s father I think, the way Snape put it.”
Harry spoke up suddenly, “Well, if she was friends with Professor Lupin, she probably did know my dad. I wonder how she knew about the cloak.”
Hermione bit her lip, “ We have her first hour, Ron, Harry. This should be interesting.”
They all exchanged looks. Elizabeth looked at her watch as she took her concentration off of her pupils. They would debate all they wanted, and they probably wouldn’t draw anything too revealing from Snape and her conversation. She had ten minutes, so she finished her breakfast and left the Great Hall. She talked to a painting for a couple minutes, then hurried to her classroom, where she pushed open the door and went in.
A/N: Please post feedback. I'm hoping the next one will be up soon, but I can't make any promises!
Last edited by GryffindorSeeker; January 18th, 2004 at 1:00 am.
A/N: Sorry that I didn't get to post as soon as I'd hoped. A few things came up, but here it is! Please post Feedback!
The room fell silent as she stepped in, and there was a flurry of motion in a few places as the students took their seats.
Elizabeth walked to the front of the class and picked up the scroll of parchment on her desk and began attendance:
Ron Weasley,” She called attendance without a pause or a blink, surprising enough. Many of the students had parents she had gone to school with, or knew, and many were spitting images. The count was per each house: 2 Slytherin, 4 Hufflepuff, 3 Ravenclaws, and 6 Gryffindors.
Then she looked up to the class. All of them were looking at her suspiciously, sitting at their desks, there wands out, and books on their desks, all watching her, as though they were waiting for her to make the first move so they could see if they should attack her or no.
She opened her mouth to speak and began, “W-” but as soon as her mouth began to form the first word, she was cut off abruptly.
“Who are you?” asked Malfoy looking curious.
“I’m Professor Smythe,” she said, startled.
“I’ve heard the last of your family died five years ago. The ones with the name of Smythe, anyway.”
Elizabeth was surprised, his questions were far to close to the mark already for her liking, and she was about to continue what she was going to say when he cut her off again.
“How pure is your blood?”
Elizabeth gaped, “You do know that it’s impolite to interrupt adults when they’re talking, Mr. Malfoy? I doubt your father, Lucius, would approve. Now, this year we will be study-”
Malfoy spoke up again, “How do you know my father?”
Elizabeth raised an eyebrow, “Mr. Malfoy, that would be fifteen points from Slytherin for interrupting me three times. Do it again, and I believe you will have a detention. This year, we will be studying the things you should have studied last year and some more complex spells than you’ve studied yet. I understand that last year, you didn’t have much actual teaching of Defense Against the Dark Arts. Correct?”
There was a general murmur of agreement around the class. Malfoy took her pause for breath as an advantage, “My father doesn’t know any living Smythes.”
Elizabeth was getting irritable, “Well, who said I’m living? Mr. Malfoy, I’d advise you to keep your nose out of places it shouldn’t be. It will get bitten of one of these days, or worse.”
A few students laughed, and Eliza continued her speech, mentally kicking herself for letting her student get the better of her, “Because of the lack of training you got last year of all years, this year will be doubly important to be paying attention in class, especially because of Lord Voldemort’s returning last year,” there were a few gasps and flinches from her students at that, “I understand that you went over the Unforgivables in fourth year?” Murmurs of agreement reached her ears, “Excellent. We’ll be going over them again this year, just to refresh your memories. You’ve seen them, so I don’t need to show them to you again. Please read the section in your books on page 82 to 86 and write a summary of it for class. It will be going over the Unforgivables, but we need to discuss them right now,” Elizabeth swallowed and eyed the class.
“Some people know about certain curses more than others, due to their witnessing of them and some from the fact that they’ve been victims. Now, who, out side of class, have witnessed the Cruciatus curse?”
An uncomfortable silence fell, then Harry, Neville, Justin, and Nott raised their hands.
Elizabeth nodded, “Have any been victims of it?”
Neville, Harry, and Nott raised their hands.
Elizabeth sighed, “Who, outside of class have witnessed the Imperious curse being cast?”
Malfoy and Lisa raised their hands.
“Outside of class, who have been victims of that?”
Reluctantly, Harry and Malfoy raised their hands.
Elizabeth bit her lip in slight surprise, “Who have seen, out side of class, the Killing curse?”
Silence. Then Harry raised his hand.
Elizabeth nodded, and didn’t ask who had been victims of it, so she continued, “As you see, some of you have experienced more with these spell than others. As dangerous as these Curses are, they can be over come. Overcoming the Killing curse less likely than,” she paused to think, then smiled slightly, adding a touch of humor to a serious subject, said, “Professor Snape willingly doing the hula in the Great Hall tonight, with out any bribes or anything.”
Soft laughter greeted this, then the humor died away. A bell rang as distance away.
“The summary will be due next week, at least six inches!” and they were gone. Elizabeth leaned against the wall and rubbed her eyes. It was going to be a long day.
She was right. Her next class was an anxious looking group of first years Gryffindors, to whom she explained how vital this class would be to their lives, accidentally scaring one girl into hysterics.
That class wasn’t to difficult as the students, as first years, were easily impressed, and as Gryffindors weren’t as bratty as others could have been. But, the class was slightly trying as the children had not known much about Voldemort's previous reign, as they hadn’t been there for it, and were mostly innocent and ignorant of most of the trouble on the outside world. That was, they knew of it, but didn’t understand very well.
After that, was lunch. Eliza was almost as light hearted at the prospect of a nice hour of lunch and rest as the students she taught, but refrained from skipping until the corridor was completely empty, with the exception of a few bemused portraits, watching a professor, an adult, skipping down the hall like a little girl.
When Eliza got to the Great Hall, she placed her self in her seat between Snape and Sinistra.
“What are you so,” Snape swore, apparently not as cheerful as his colleague, “Happy for?”
Elizabeth smiled cheerfully, “Now, Snape, you do know that you should be setting a good example for our pupils, correct?”
Snape glared at her, barely holding onto the discipline that kept him from dragging her from the Great Hall and sticking her head down an unflushed toilet.
“Besides, it’s lunch! We get a break from our lectures and practical workings and get to enjoy ourselves!”
Snape paled, his eyes cold, “Why would I enjoy having to eat my lunch with a disgustingly cheerful person such as you?”
Elizabeth gave him a look, still extremely cheerful and said, “The exact same reason I would enjoy having to eat my lunch with a pathetically morose person such as yourself!”
Professor Sinistra watched these proceeding, looking far more interested in their conversation/argument than her cooling food before her.
Snape finished the contents in his goblet, then placed the last fork full of food in his mouth, wiped his mouth calmly, then stood up with a severe “Good day to you,” and swept out of the hall like a bat.
Eliza sipped from her goblet, and smiled at Professor Sinistra, “So, how was your morning?”
Professor Sinistra sighed, “Well, on the whole, not bad at all. They were rather restless, but as it’s the first day of school, I didn’t mind much. Yours?”
Elizabeth smiled reminiscently, “Mostly the same. It was rather interesting.”
Professor Sinistra laughed, “I heard you made one of the first year girls cry.”
Elizabeth’s smile turned sad, “I honestly didn’t mean to. I believe she’s a rather excitable creature.”
Professor Sinistra nodded, “I think your right. You don’t strike me as the type of person who would make someone cry, on purpose or anything like that. I’ve also never seen a student cry on the first day of school, except for the youngest and most excitable, so I think you’re right.”
Elizabeth smiled, “I am.”
Professor Sinistra laughed, then picked at her cold food with her fork.
“Maybe if you had been eating instead of eavesdropping, that food would be gone,” Eliza teased, making her fellow professor blush.
“Sorry,” her new friend whispered.
Elizabeth smiled cheerfully, “Oh, no you aren’t, but it’s okay.”
They talked for mostly the rest of lunch, eating. Professor Sinistra proved to be an interesting person, and great fun to talk to, even though she was a couple years older than Elizabeth, but most of her friendships had been with those older than her, and that proved not to be much of an obstacle.
At the end of lunch, they parted, with a laughing “Good luck!”
Elizabeth walked down the hall, cheerfully, before Professor Dumbledore appeared, turning a corner in front of her, and said, “Elizabeth, I need you in my office, right now.”
“Sir, you do know that I have to teach the 7th year NEWT class, right?” Elizabeth asked as she followed the elderly man down the corridor.
“Yes, Elizabeth, I’m aware of that,” came the answer, “Sir Nicholas will be keeping the class in line.”
Eliza’s level of confusion increased as they stepped onto the turning staircase, ‘What is this about?’ she thought.
When they reached the office, Dumbledore opened the door and led the way in. He sat at his desk and met her eyes.
“Elizabeth, I’m going to need you to help me with something.”
“Elizabeth, I’m going to need you to assist me with teaching Harry Occlumency.”
“What?!” Elizabeth stared.
“You heard me.”
Eliza blushed and glowered at the desk in front of her, “Why, then?”
“You’re one of the more skilled Legimens and Occlumens I know, and you can teach it well, despite the fact they come nearly naturally to you.”
Elizabeth’s blush heightened at this word of praise, but then demanded, “Why can’t you do it?”
Dumbledore sighed, “Harry needs to be prepared for different types of attacks. You can do one of the more complicated and most destructive types. He also needs to notice how individuals differ in their attacks in more basic Legimens.”
Then Elizabeth bit her lip, “Sir, you do know that I have the most classes in the school?”
Dumbledore nodded, “I’m aware of that. This can also be your position for the order.”
Elizabeth raised an eyebrow, “Sir, are you purposely keeping me out of the actual fighting and danger.”
Dumbledore smiled slightly, “I wasn’t aware that you were still foolhardy enough to want to be in the thick of battle and adventure.”
Elizabeth groaned, “Sir, I’m not, but you seem to be purposely keeping me out of it.”
The headmaster met her eyes steadily, “Elizabeth,” he said, his voice gentle, “I swore to James that I would keep you in the safest of places if he died. He’s dead, and I’m left with that oath to contend with.”
Elizabeth rolled her eyes, “Sir, you swore that along time ago. Besides, you broke the ties that kept me away from here.”
Dumbledore sighed patiently, “Only after you swore an oath of your own to teach here. This one can not be avoided.”
Elizabeth groaned again, “Sir, James was simply overprotective, can’t you take that into account?”
“I could, but Sirius made me promise to keep you as safe as your nature would allow you to be and be happy.”
“The old overprotective busybody... How is this happy?” Elizabeth muttered, but Dumbledore ignored her.
“Due to the charms James placed on you, I won’t be able to let you out of Hogwarts, Hogsmeade, Headquarters, or Diagon Alley until this year is over. School year, I mean.”
Elizabeth glowered around the room.
“Elizabeth, there’s really no choice. You’re the best one for this, due to your abilities, so live with that.”
Elizabeth regarded Albus carefully, “Does he know about this, sir?”
As if to answer this question, there was a knock on the door. Dumbledore smiled, “Elizabeth, would you get the door, I believe that is him.”
Elizabeth strode across the room and opened the door, and sure enough, there stood a messy black haired, gangly teenager that had been in Elizabeth’s first class. Eliza gave Harry a kind smile and let him in, her heart pumping.
Harry paused, standing there awkwardly, looking at Elizabeth, asking her why she was there with his expression. Elizabeth smiled slowly, then stood at Dumbledore’s shoulder, waiting.
“Sit down, Harry,” Dumbledore said kindly.
Harry obeyed, but didn’t look an inch more comfortable. Dumbledore looked sideways at Eliza, who raised an eyebrow at him.
“Last year, you took a few Occlumency lessons with Professor Snape, before he... er... refused to give them to you again, correct?”
Elizabeth rolled her eyes. Snape? Teach Occlumency? The man has no patience, and he holds a grudge over Harry that would make his patience even less.
“This year, I’ll be teaching you most of the time. I’m rather busy with the work for the Order, and the basic running of this school, so when I’m unable to, Professor Smythe will be teaching you. When I’m not busy, then she will be assisting. Any questions?”
Harry was now eying Elizabeth anxiously, but he mumbled, “No, sir.”
“We will be meeting on Thursdays after dinner. Does that suit?”
“That is all, Harry. You may go.”
Harry nodded, cast another look at Elizabeth, then hurried out the door.
“Sir, could I go to my class now? I have seventh year NEWTs.”
As soon as she got out, she slowed her walk and rubbed her head. Due to this, Harry would start asking questions earlier. That was probably one of Dumbledore’s intentions. Eliza yawned, and hurried to her class room.
Chapter Fifteen: Part One
Class went by rather quickly, as her teaching was similar to that of the sixth year NEWTs. There were less interruptions too, as no one really seemed to question her identity at all.
After that class was the Gryffindor 5th years, who trooped in before the bell rang, looking slightly apprehensive.
Elizabeth took attendance, which did not take long at all as there were few 5th year Gryffindors.
She worked with them on their lesson, and gave them an assignment, avoiding the curious looks she was getting from Ginny Weasley. At the end, when the students left, Ginny studied her Defense professor carefully, then fled.
Elizabeth cleaned up the mess from the day, organized her desk, and put the scrolls and books in the drawers, and headed for dinner. She was tired, and as she headed off to the Great Hall she could feel her head drooping and her eyes closing, but she got to the hall with out any great accident. Dinner was quieter that Lunch had been at the staff table, and seemed longer too. Snape and she only got into one argument, and Professor Sinistra was rather tired too, so the pair of them didn't talk much.
Finally, Elizabeth got to bed and fell asleep, quite early, but she had gotten up extremely early, and hadn't had much sleep the night before. When she fell asleep, the connections with other people in the castle, she could feel with her mind, and shedded all but one lone one, when she began to dream, the dream being a the memory it was:
A/N: Sorry that’s so short, but this is what I can get up right now. The next part will be much longer, and that will be up soon.
A/N: Here it is! Not as soon as I'd have hoped, but it's here all the same! Enjoy and feedback!
Chapter Fifteen: Part Two
Eliza yawned and sat up, brushing her hair out of her face. She couldn’t sleep, and after tossing and turning for several hours, she got up. She put on her slippers and robe, and made her way downstairs, sneaking past her brother James’s room, and slid down the stairs silently.
When she reached the kitchen, she lit the lamp in the middle of the table and began to make some hot cocoa, making about three times as much as she needed with out noticing. She took out a mug, and waited for the liquid to heat.
She sat on a small bench and stared out the window, trying to see past the reflection of the fifteen year old self. She kicked at the air like a three year old and waited, watching for something, anything, to happen. The old clock in the other room struck three, and Eliza poured the hot liquid into her mug and looked out the window again. A shadow was standing at the end of the lane. A familiar shadow.
Almost dropping the pot, Eliza gasped in surprise. She set down the pot and her mug, and ran for the door, unheeding of her slippered feet, nor her manner of dress. She ran out of the cottage, down the lane, right at the shadow.
“Lizzie! What are you doing up at this time?” asked a shaky voice.
“Sirius!” Eliza said sharply, “What are you doing here?”
Sirius shakily replied, “I ran away. I couldn’t stand them anymore. I take it I’m at the right place?”
Eliza nodded, and her sharpness softened, “Come in,” she said, taking an end of his trunk as he took the other, “You can have some cocoa.”
Sirius smiled weakly at that, “Cocoa? Beth, it’s summer!”
Eliza rolled her eyes and answered, “Of course it is, but it’s also freezing!”
They stepped into the light of the kitchen. Eliza got out another mug and poured cocoa into it, as she studied him.
He was pale and shivering, looking younger than he was. His face was anxious, and he was looking around the kitchen nervously.
Eliza handed him his cocoa, and they sat down at the table.
“So,” Eliza said tiredly, “What are you planning on doing?”
Sirius took a deep drink of cocoa, and looked thoughtful, “Well, Liz, I was planning on telling James, this was the first place I came up with, but I didn’t really have a plan.”
Eliza raised an eyebrow at his nickname for her, she never did like the names Beth, Liz, Lizzie, and others like that. Sirius insisted on calling her them for that reason, to irk her.
“Well, what happened this time, that made you actually run away?”
Sirius studied the grain of the wood of the table, “They were being worse then usual, talking all about how Voldemort was going to make this world better, by scouring the muggle blood out of it, and how I should be proud to be a Black, practically royalty.
They were going on about how I should stop being friendly with ‘mudbloods and blood traitors’ as they put it, and how I should spend my time with those of ’pure blood and strong families’. Well, they usually do that, but this year they were worse about it, talking about it every moment. I’m just tired of having to be stuck in a house full of Dark Wizards, when I don’t want to be like them!”
Eliza nodded. Now, more than ever she was glad of her family. They were fully against the Dark Arts and the “purification of blood” and weren’t afraid to admit it.
“So, should I get James up?”
“Don’t bother him yet. You know how he likes his sleep.”
Eliza looked at Sirius, he was looking very miserable and uncomfortable, “Well, what else is going on?”
Sirius sighed, “Nothing really. I’m just tired.”
Eliza sat forward, “Sirius, it’s not your fault that they don’t understand you. It’s just, what you value, they hate, and what they value, you hate. It’s not your fault for this. Mum and Dad’ll take you in here, don’t worry about that.”
Sirius glared into the cup of cocoa, “It’s just that, even though I hate them, it’s still....” he broke off sharply, his face angry.
Eliza sighed patiently, “It’s not your fault, Sirius, just don’t worry about it, there’s nothing you can do, honest. As for them, don’t worry, there was going to be this sooner or later,” she said gently.
“Is it okay if I get James up?”
Sirius grinned, “Yes, go ahead. Beth.”
Eliza smiled after her back was turned. She tip-toed up the stairs as quietly as she could. When she got to James’s room, he was snoring. She went around the mess the best she could in the dark, only stubbing one toe, and running into the bedside table. Swearing, she shook James awake.
“Was gone on?” James asked groggily.
“Shush. Sirius is in the kitchen. Get up. Quickly. Don’t wake Mum or Dad.”
James obeyed reluctantly and stifling yawns. His hair was messier than it usually was, if that was possible, and he was pale. He found his glasses and fixed them on his face clumsily. Then he found himself following his sister down the narrow flight of stairs, into the dimly lit kitchen.
Sure enough, sitting there was none other than Sirius Black. All signs of exhaustion disappeared, as he whispered, “Padfoot! What are you doing here?”
Sirius smiled tiredly at his best friend and answered, “I left home, Prongs. And came here.”
It took some explaining, and a couple mugs of hot cocoa to get it all explained, but at four-thirty, in came a woman with neat black hair and hazel eyes. Mum.
Eliza took out the fourth mug out of the cupboard and pour the tenth mug full of that night.
Mrs. Potter sat down and looked around at her children and Sirius, excepting the cup of cocoa with a “Thank you, Liza.” She took a sip and smiled at the taste. It was from she whom Eliza had inherited her love of chocolate.
“Hello Sirius,” she said kindly.
“Hello Mrs. Potter.”
Isabelle Potter looked at James and Liza expecting. James explained Sirius’s presence. Their Mother only needed a few seconds of explanation before she silenced her son with a small gesture. She turned to Sirius.
“Well, Sirius, I don’t think you’ve had any sleep, have you?”
Sirius shook his head.
Mrs. Potter nodded, “Then come on up, you can sleep in the spare room now. I’m sure my husband won’t mind.”
Mrs. Potter stood up, and steered Sirius upstairs with a gentle hand.
James and Eliza exchanged surprised looks and grinned.
Elizabeth woke. She yawned and rubbed her eyes. Then her stomach plummeted. There had been someone connected with her during the dream. Someone who had seen it from her perspective.
That day Elizabeth ran through her classes with out thinking. The classes didn’t go too badly.
Lunch was the only time Elizabeth didn’t attempt to figure out the one who had connected to her mind so firmly. Professor Sinistra and Elizabeth made fun of Snape behind his back, moving his silverware and flatware from place to place, making him extremely frustrated.
They had a difficult time not laughing as he stood up and leaned all the way across the table for his fork. Elizabeth knocked the chair aside a bit, just enough to give him a jolt. He nearly slipped off the chair when he sat down, but he grabbed Elizabeth’s arm and pulled her almost on top of him.
Students and professors alike were shooting the three of them odd looks. Snape finally gave up trying to eat and swept out of the Great Hall, apparently fuming.
The two professors exchanged looks and fell into gales of silent laughter.
The rest of the day passed rather the same as the first half had.
Professor Snape sat on the edge of his seat at dinner, wary of the two Professors to his left.
Professor Sinistra turned to Eliza when she was a little over half done with her shepherd’s pie.
“I just had the first year Gryffindors,” she said, laughing.
“Did you? When exactly?” Eliza looked up interested.
“Late yesterday, but I forgot to tell you,” she said hurriedly.
“So how were they?”
Professor Sinistra laughed, “Well, a little girl with brown hair was sitting on her stool, and when I explained what we would be working on, she asked why it would be so dark, and began to wail.”
Elizabeth stared, “You’re not kidding, are you?”
She shook her head, smiling, “Not at all. She actually did. I have a feeling she has done that a lot, as when she did it, the others began to give her rather disgusted looks.”
“Well, why’s she being like that?”
“I really don’t know. Either she’s doing it for the attention, she’s weak, or she’s frightened rather easily. I thought Gryffindors were supposed to be bold and brave. My mistake.”
Eliza smiled as she stared out into the group of students. She saw a flurry of moment at the Gryffindor table that immediately proved to be five Gryffindors turning around quickly, one of them over turning a full goblet of milk, causing a bit of disruption.
Dinner ended and as the students and teachers left, Professor Dumbledore caught Elizabeth and Snape while Professor McGonagol followed him.
“Order meeting,” he said softly to them.
Eliza stood by the door looking further in. A moth-eaten hanging hung before a rectangular opening, it looked. The gas lamps appeared to be flickering, and the hall was dingy. It was a bit cleaner than it had been as of last time, but not by much.
Tonks came running out of the kitchen, followed by the slower placed Remus, tired as ever. He gave Eliza a smile as Tonks attempted to lead them into the kitchen, but tripped over something, and toppled over with a crash.
There was the sound of a curtain opening, and an ear splitting scream, erupted behind them.
“BLOOD-TRAITERS! BEEEEEINGS OF FFFFFILLLLLTH!!! LEEEEEEAVE THE HOME OF MY FAAAATHERS!”
Elizabeth and Remus leapt forward together and pulled on the curtains. They wouldn’t budge. Elizabeth threw her wait into the movement, and with a snap, they shut.
Eliza exchanged glances with Remus, who was straightening his robes and breathing deeply.
They followed the group into the kitchen. As everyone sat down at the long wooden table, Remus laughed softly and whispered in her ear “Lovely, wasn’t that?”
Elizabeth smiled in reply and turned her gaze over to a serious looking Dumbledore.
“I know it isn’t customary, having two order meetings so close together as these, but some important things have come up.”
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