Hey, y'all. Thank you to those of you who reviewed the last chapter!
I hope everyone is doing alright in this current quarantine situation.
Disclaimer: Not mine.
"Come, Miss Potter," he said in a soft voice, for which I was thankful. It didn't aggravate my head nearly as bad, "Let's get you to the infirmary."
I sat on the edge of the bed in the hospital wing, swinging my newly healed feet back and forth. Snape and Madam Pomfrey were in the woman's office, as they had been for the last half hour. Talking about me, I was sure.
It was strange. When we arrived, Madam Pomfrey hadn't asked me a single question about how I had received my injuries. She had flown around the room feeding me potions and waving her wand at me to mend my broken bones. She said she would bring back some bruise paste to fix up my bruises when she returned, but I was already in a slight bit of awe at the way she had healed my broken bones. It hurt, but the pain potion helped.
The door flew open, and Madam Pomfrey walked out with a jar that looked like some kind of soap; I assumed this was the bruise paste she mentioned. Snape followed behind her and paused just outside the entrance of the door. He gave me an examining look, and I shivered as I imagined the conclusions he was drawing about me.
"Here, dear," Madam Pomfrey said, "let me put this on your face."
She reached her hands up to put the paste on my bruised cheek, and I clenched my fists to keep from flinching away from her. I couldn't hold back the small twitch at her touch. The paste really did help. It was cool, and I could feel the numbness settling in on my bruised face and throat. Her face had taken on an angry tint as she put the paste on my throat, so I held myself perfectly still to keep from angering her further.
"There we go." Madam Pomfrey stepped back and gave me a measuring look. "I'm going to leave you to speak with Professor Snape here now, Miss Potter. If you need anything, Professor Snape will call me."
I nodded, and she turned to look at Snape "I'll be in my office, Severus."
They shared a look that I couldn't make out, but I suspected that it had something to do with me. Madam Pomfrey turned and walked into her office, giving me one last look as she walked inside.
I tensed as I turned to meet Snape's gaze.
His eyes were narrowed in my direction, but as I stiffened, something in his gaze seemed to soften. I didn't relax. What exactly this shift in his expression meant: I had no clue. But I knew that the expression on someone's face could not always be trusted to be the truth. Elijah had taught me that.
Snape walked towards me and sat in the seat beside the bed. I drew back, leaning into the frame of the bed and pulling my knees up against my chest. What did he want? Was he angry that I was here? Would he send me back?
His eyes flickered with something that looked like anger, but it disappeared too quickly for me to be certain. "Miss Potter, do you know where you are?" His voice was calm, without any of the anger I had been expecting.
I curled my shoulders towards my knees, pulling my head down so that I was looking at my bare feet. "Hogwarts."
He didn't say anything for several moments. "That's right. And can you tell me where you were before this?"
"My adopted parents' house," I whispered.
"And where do they live?"
My eyes snapped up in a panic. "What?"
"Your adopted parents. We'll need to inform them of where you are. I'm sure they're worried." His voice was toneless, but his jaw tensed. I was worried about what that might mean for me.
"Why…" I licked my lips. What could I say? What should I say? I had just walked myself into a trap, and I didn't know how I could lie my way out of it. "I… You don't need to tell them. It's alright. Really."
Even though I tried to put as much enthusiasm in my voice as I could Snape didn't look like he was convinced. I rushed to change the subject. "When can I meet my brother?"
It wasn't so much that I really wanted to draw attention to the fact that I probably shouldn't even know that I had a brother, but I didn't want to stay on the topic of the Newlins any longer either. I was guessing that Snape would be more interested in how I knew about Hogwarts. And how I knew about my brother. At least, that was the hope.
Snape pursed his lips and scowled lightly at me. "As much as I would love to know all about how you know your brother, Miss Potter, that is not going to work right now."
He didn't sound mad. Not yet. But I knew that could be deceiving.
I swallowed. "I… I don't know where they live." It was a pathetic last-ditch attempt to throw the question off. I knew that, and he knew it too.
He raised his eyebrows. "Really?" He drew the word out as he spoke, and it wasn't hard for me to read the sarcasm in his voice.
I flinched and ducked my head not willing to meet his eyes. I couldn't tell. That was Elijah's first rule. Never—ever—tell anyone. "It's really far away, sir. You don't have to go honest." I didn't want to imagine how they would react if Snape showed up to talk to them about me after I vanished like that. I couldn't fathom it, and that scared me more than anything else.
"Wizards can travel great distances in surprisingly short amounts of time. You shouldn't worry about that."
My eyes stung, and I rested my forehead against my knees to keep him from seeing. I felt my shoulders begin to tremble. What could I say now? There was no way he would just forget about it now, and I didn't doubt that if I refused to tell him, he would manage to find out some other way.
A hand rested on my shoulders, and I tensed. It didn't move.
A moment later, Snape spoke, and I felt some of the tension leave my shoulders as he did so. "You won't have to see them again if you don't want to."
My eyes shot up and met his. Snape's eyes were hard but controlled, and he didn't look like he was lying or angry. "Really?" I whispered.
Snape squeezed my shoulder. "Really."
I breathed a sigh of relief. Never seeing the Newlins again would be a dream come true. But, would that really be allowed? Where would I stay?
Almost as though he had read my mind, he continued, "I'm sure your Aunt and Uncle would be more than happy for you to stay with them and your brother."
I wouldn't have said they'd be happy, but I was sure that staying with Harry would make it alright. Except, I reminded myself, Harry doesn't even know that I exist yet. What if he doesn't like me?
"Can you tell me their address?" Snape asked, removing his hand from my shoulder.
I swallowed, and carefully gave him the address praying that he hadn't been lying to me, but assuring myself that if he was, he probably would have found out anyway.
"Thank you. Now, if you're up for it, I have a few more questions for you?"
It was a question, but I had the feeling that if I didn't answer them, they would be asked again at a later date. I nodded, turning my eyes away from Snape, and back to my feet.
"First, I need you to tell me how you know about Hogwarts? And about your brother?"
I nodded again, running through the information I knew and weighing the consequences of telling him too much of it. "I know Harry." I paused for a moment to collect my thoughts, and Snape didn't interrupt. "In my head."
The problem was that I didn't know if mental connections between twins existed the way my visions of Harry presented themselves, but by the presence of his question, I guessed not. I hoped that it existed in the vague way I had described it because I didn't want to delve into the specifics.
He didn't say anything, and I risked a glance up at him to gauge his reaction. It was hard to read. His face was blank, and I wasn't sure if that meant it was a normal thing or if he was making an effort to keep it blank.
"Is that also how you know about Hogwarts?" he asked after a moment.
I nodded. "Yes, sir."
"Alright." There was a slight edge to his voice, but I couldn't detect what it was. He continued, not giving me a chance to ponder it any longer, "Can you tell me where that scar above your eye came from?"
I bit my lip, unsure how much of the story I could safely give him. It wasn't as though I could say, Oh yeah, that. My adopted father threw me against a nail, but it hurt so I flinched and ended up with that nice lightning bolt pattern. I'm sure that would have gone over well with Snape. "It was a nail. A rusted nail." Snape's jaw tensed so I added, "It was in the wall, and I tripped." I stumbled slightly over the last word, and I prayed he wouldn't assume it was from lying—which, of course, it was.
He pursed his lips but moved on anyway. "Headmaster Dumbledore shall be here to meet you as soon as Madam Pomfrey performs a final check of your injuries and brings you something to eat. I shall see what I can do about arranging for your brother to meet with you tomorrow. Do you have any questions for me?"
I straightened my shoulders at the mention of Harry as I shook my head. I didn't have any questions. None that were pressing or that I thought would receive straight answers or be well received at any rate. I would love to know how my connection with Harry worked, and how I could have appeared here, but I wasn't sure I wanted Snape to know any more than he already did. And I was sure he would need me to tell him more information for him to help me answer those questions. I could check the library when I was permitted to leave.
"Wonderful." Snape stood up. "I shall send Madam Pomfrey in, and I shall speak with you tomorrow."
He walked through the door to Madam Pomfrey's office. A few minutes later, the both walked out.
Snape walked towards the exit, turning back to give me a word of parting, "tomorrow, Miss Potter" before he left the infirmary.
Madam Pomfrey shook her head and walked towards me. "Let's check those injuries of yours one more time."
So… It's been a while. Sorry. I make no promises for when I will update next, but I thought that I might as well get something done while on quarantine. Most of my fanfictions are on the back burner right now because I'm working on a novel, but I'm procrastinating starting draft two, so you get this chapter.
Thanks for reading. Let me know what you think, and stay healthy. :)