Disclaimer: I don't own anything here except for the original characters.
When morning finally came, James gently told Lily and Rose what had occurred the night before at the Ministry and its implication. Both Potter females were alarmed that Voldemort finally knew the full content of Trelawney's prophecy and enfolded Harry in a tight embrace, tears shining in their eyes. Harry did his best to calm his mother and sister as he returned their embrace while James reassured them that all measures would be taken to ensure Harry's safety.
Later, when Harry sensed that Ginny was fully awake, he told her about his latest Voldemort vision, which also alarmed Ginny. It took all her self control not to immediately run to the fireplace and Floo over to Potter Manor. Harry then explained the need for additional wards around Potter Manor and Dumbledore's suggestion that her Curse-Breaker brother could help with those. Ginny immediately went to Bill who was more than willing to help the Potters.
Bill arrived a little past ten that morning through the Floo network. James, Lily and Harry were waiting for him in the living room. After a hurried greeting to Harry, Bill, Lily and James went up to the Dueling Room on the third floor which James warded from any form of eavesdropping. Harry felt irritated at being excluded from their discussion.
Harry sighed and turned his attention back to his Charms summer homework as he sat on the marble floor of his living room, trying to absorb the marble's coolness to overcome the heat of early June. He and the other New Marauders had agreed to spend the first couple of weeks of the summer break doing their summer homework so as to have rest of the time free for training. Rose was doing her own homework in her room which was cooler than the living room in the morning.
"Don't worry about it, Harry," Ginny's voice echoed in his mind through their bond. "I'm sure they'll let you know what they'll be putting up once they've decided."
"I know, Gin," Harry replied. "It's just that I hate being in the dark about things. I mean, they kept the prophecy from me for years, even after I asked my dad and Dumbledore why Voldemort had it in for me back at the end of my first year. I don't want to be in the dark again. It would have been better if I had known about the prophecy years ago. They could have trained me much earlier so I could have got rid of that monster back at the graveyard."
"Maybe so, Harry, but then you wouldn't have much of a childhood. You'd probably have been hidden away from everyone else while they trained you. That would have meant not knowing anyone beyond your parents, Sirius and Remus. So you wouldn't have been friends with my brothers, especially Ron. And you wouldn't have known me and fallen in love with me. Then, we wouldn't have this bond right now. Would you exchange all that just so you can have a better chance at winning over Tom a few weeks ago?"
Harry gulped. He hadn't thought about it that way. The years before Hogwarts had been happy ones, filled with laughter and fun with his parents, Rose and the Weasleys. He couldn't imagine what life could have been like without them. In addition, after more than a year of sharing a Soul Bond with Ginny, he couldn't imagine life without her. No, he wouldn't trade anything for the childhood he had or what he shared with Ginny now.
"You're right, Ginny," he replied, " As much as I hate having to find out about the prophecy only last year, I may not have enjoyed myself back then if I knew the most evil Dark Wizard in the world wanted me dead. I might have been afraid to leave Potter Manor and its wards since I wasn't allowed to do magic even to defend myself."
"See?" she said, with satisfaction coloring her mental voice. "I doubt we'd have been friends that early if you'd been afraid to come to the Burrow."
"All right, all right," he said, "I get it. Thanks, Gin. You're always making me see things clearly. What would I be without you?"
"I'm not sure, Harry. I hope we never find out. Now, let's get back to our homework. If we finish what we're working on right now, maybe I can get my Mum to let me come over for the afternoon."
Harry grinned. "That would be great, Gin. I miss you even if it's only been four days since we last saw each other. This talking mind to mind is great but what I really want is to feel your lips on mine and your hair running through my fingers." Harry's grin widened as he felt Ginny's face start to warm up.
"Harry! Don't say things like that when I'm in plain sight of my mum, not to mention Ron."
"Sorry, Gin," Harry said, not feeling anything of the sort. He reached out mentally and focused his senses so he could see through Ginny's eyes. It seemed that she was seated in the living room of the Burrow with a book in her lap. Her mother was seated beside her, knitting a coat while Ron was directly across from her, copying down something on parchment from one of their textbooks.
"Ginny," Mrs. Weasley asked, catching sight of Ginny's red face. "Your face is looks flushed. Is something wrong? Is it the heat?"
"No, Mum," she replied, "It's nothing. I'm all right." "I'll get you for this, Potter."
"Oh, you can try, Miss Weasley, maybe this afternoon if you get your work done."
"You just wait, Harry. Now, I'll really work to finish this."
Harry grinned. He loved the fire in her. He turned back to his homework, aware that Ginny had done likewise.
An hour later, Harry heard footsteps from the stairs leading to the second floor. He looked up and saw his mother descending the stairs. A few second later, his father and Bill did the same. He reached out to Ginny.
"Hey, love, Bill and Dad are finally coming down. Let's see what they've come up with."
"Okay, Harry. I'm almost done. When I do get there this afternoon, you'd better be ready for some pay back for what you said earlier."
Harry grinned again.
James noticed the sappy grin on his son's face and decided to tease him a bit. "Hey, son, you look very happy right now. That look on your face is like the one I get after a nice good snog with your mum."
"DAD," Harry shouted, horrified, "please, don't you dare put that image in my head. How can I kiss Ginny now without conjuring up images of you and Mum?" He shuddered.
Bill grimaced. "Not another word, Harry. I don't want to hear about you kissing my little sister."
"'Little sister'," Ginny's voice sounded indignant in Harry's head. "I'm almost fourteen! Ooh, wait 'til he gets home. I'll show the git who's little."
"Now, now, Gin," Harry said, "Calm down." "Um, Bill, I'm not sure how much your parents have told you about our Soul Bond, but you do know that we can see and hear what the other can see and hear if we concentrate hard enough, right?"
Bill looked puzzled for a while as he answered, "Err, they did say something about that." His eyes then widened. "Wait a minute, Harry. Ginny wouldn't happen to be listening and watching us right now through you, would she?"
Harry grinned. "I'm afraid so, Bill. She wasn't thrilled by you calling her 'little sister' just a few seconds ago. So, I wouldn't try going home for a while if I were you."
Bill winced and his face turned pale, "Yeah, right, good advice." He turned to James, "Uh, Mr. Potter, how about we try putting up some of those extra wards now while I'm here."
James grinned. "Sure, Bill, we can do that. Actually, I think Lily would really appreciate that."
Just then, Blinky, their chief house-elf popped into the living room, "Master Harry, Master James, Mistress Lily asked me to tell you that lunch will be ready in a few minutes."
"Good. Thanks, Blinky," James said before turning back to Bill. "Why don't you join us for lunch, Bill? Then we can do some of the wards after."
"Sure, Mr. Potter," Bill said, grinning. Then he added in a low tone, "Thanks. This way, Ginny may have enough time to calm down over my 'little sister' remark before I get home."
Harry could feel Ginny fuming through the bond. He grinned and tried to wall off his amusement as she seethed with fury over not being able to hex her brother immediately.
As they ate a hearty lunch which Bill proclaimed was as delicious as any his mother could make, James and Bill told Harry, Lily and Rose about the wards they intended to put up. After having dessert, James and Bill proceeded to the back of the mansion to start on the wards while Lily asked Rose and Harry to help her feed their younger siblings.
After Daisy and Andrew were fed and taken up to their room for an afternoon nap, Rose and Harry decided to continue working on the homework on the porch. It also gave them a view of their father and Bill as they set up the extra wards.
It was two hours later when Harry heard Ginny call him in his mind. "Harry, I'm coming over now. Don't let that git brother of mine know, okay?"
"Sure, Gin. I can't wait to see you."
Rose noticed the silly grin on her brother's face. "Hey, big brother, you're talking to Ginny again, aren't you?"
"Shh, not so loud, Rose," Harry said. "She doesn't want Bill to know she's coming over." He quickly told her what Bill had said earlier.
"Oh, I get it," Rose said, a smirk forming on her face. "She really hates it when any of her brothers calls her 'little sister'. I bet she plans some payback on him when he isn't paying attention."
Harry grinned, "Yeah, you got that right." He then sensed that Ginny had arrived in their living room. "She's here."
Ginny stuck her head out of the door connecting the living room and porch. Spotting her boyfriend and best friend, she walked over to them and kissed Harry swiftly on the lips. "Excuse me, love, but I have to deal with a git of a brother."
She looked around and saw Bill and James near the far wall of the Potter property. Bill had his back turned to them. Ginny started walking over to them. Harry and Rose looked at each other and exchanged grins before following her.
James spotted Ginny a few seconds later but said nothing as he continued talking with Bill. Ginny already had her wand out. When she was a few feet from her oldest brother, she whispered something as she pointed the wooden stick at him.
Bill gave a yelp as his wand flew out of his hand. He turned around and found the point of Ginny's wand a few inches from his face while his own was in her other hand.
"Ginny!" Bill cried, his eyes going wide, "Uh, hi. I guess you heard what I said to Harry, huh?"
"Yeah," Ginny said, glaring at him, "I sure did. You of all people should know I hate to be thought of as a little girl. I think you need to be reminded of that."
"Come on now, Ginny," Bill said, sweat breaking out on his forehead. "I didn't mean it that way. I, uh, was referring to your height."
"Ooh," Ginny said, "That does it. Battus Muccus!"
A yellow light hit Bill's face and, almost immediately, greenish bat-shaped globs of snot started coming out of his nose and circling around his head. Bill yelped and started trying to bat them away.
"I'm sorry, okay?" Bill cried out as he clawed at his face. He looked imploringly at his sister who continued to glare at him. When she remained silent, he looked at James who was clearly fighting to keep from laughing. Behind Ginny, Harry and Rose didn't even try and were doubling over from their laughter.
"Ginny," James finally said, "As much as it amuses me to see your brother like this, I think that's a bit too much for what he did. Your mother will kill me if I don't make you stop that hex right now."
"Oh, all right, James," Ginny said. "But he better be careful how he treats me or he'll get the same. He's lucky I controlled how much power I used on the hex or the bogeys would have made his nostrils a lot bigger." She waved her wand and the bogeys stopped coming out of Bill's nose.
"Blimey, Ginny," Bill said as he wiped the remaining snot from his nose with a handkerchief, "You're getting more sensitive as you grow older. I pity Harry after both of you are married. He might end up sleeping more on the couch than in your bed."
"Oh, no, Bill," Harry said, grinning, "With the bond, I'll know when to keep my mouth shut and avoid that."
"Oh, really, Harry?" Rose asked. "Well, we'll see."
"What's that suppose to mean?" Harry demanded.
"Oh, nothing," Rose said, "I'll just let you go on thinking that." She leaned close to Ginny and whispered to her, "I can't wait for the first time he proves wrong there."
"I'll remember that and let you know," Ginny whispered back. The two redheads giggled.
Harry raised an eyebrow at the girls and shook his head. Ignoring their behavior, he turned to his father, "Okay, Dad. So, what wards did you and Bill put up?"
James and Bill spent the next hour explaining the old and new wards to the three teens. The previous wards around Potter Manor made it almost impossible for unauthorized persons to Apparate directly on the grounds, kept Muggles from seeing it and even made it difficult for Wizarding folk to see it if they were not on a list of people that James regularly updated. The new wards included repelling wards against werewolves, giants and vampires and charms that detected the presence of Dementors and anyone with the Dark Mark. The latter was tied in to a shield charm that would come up when the Dark Mark was detected.
"Uh, Dad," Harry said, "What about a ward against Dementors?"
James sighed, "There isn't one yet, Harry. No one has ever made one since it hasn't been needed until now."
Rose then asked, "Dad, did Wormtail come here when you and the other Marauders were in school?"
"Yes, unfortunately," James said, "He even continued to come here after we finished school until we went into hiding. However, I removed him from the list of people allowed to see and come to the Manor when he was convicted and sent to Azkaban. I only hope he was never able to give Voldemort or any Death Eater an idea of the area we're in. At any rate, if anyone with a Dark Mark comes near the house, the alarm charm will warn us. Now, let's not get worried over something we have no control over. Let's get into the house. Putting up those new wards made me hungry."
Later that afternoon, as Harry and Ginny were spending some time together on the couch in the living room, the fireplace erupted in green flames. The young couple jumped to their feet almost immediately and drew their wands. A few seconds later, Albus Dumbledore stepped out of the fireplace and found two wands pointed at him.
"Very good, Harry, Ginny," Dumbledore said, "I am glad the two of you are alert and don't take for granted that anyone coming out of the Floo is a friend." He sat down in one of the armchairs in the middle of the living room as Harry and Ginny warily lowered their wands.
"Now, Harry, Ginny," the old wizard said, "I have reviewed both prophecies. We already know the meaning of Professor Trelawney's prophecy. I have studied Rose's prophecy and have concluded that the six companions are the group you call the New Marauders." He grinned at their shocked faces. "I see you are surprised that I know that group is composed of you and your friends. I know that only the son of James Potter would have the audacity to name his group of pranksters after the Marauders. Of course, few people really know who the Marauders were. Do not worry. I will not punish you for any pranks as long as I don't catch you in the act."
"Err, thanks, Professor, I guess," Harry said, "Um, about the six companions in Rose's prophecy. We believe we know who they specifically are."
"Really?" Dumbledore asked, his eyes twinkling, "That's excellent, Harry. Please, who do you think they are?"
"Well, Professor," Ginny said, "Obviously, I'm the Soul Mate and Rose is the Seer. I guess it also follows that Hermione is Wise Lady since she's the smartest among us."
"That's good so far," Dumbledore said, "What about the others?"
"Well," Harry said, "the Strategist is probably Ron since he beats everyone in any game we've ever played. Now the Green Lord and the White Ram had us stumped. But after talking it over with the others, we've decided that Neville is the Green Lord and Ti is the White Ram."
"I see," Dumbledore said, "Excellent, Harry and Ginny. I have come to the same conclusions. Did you tell your friends about both prophecies, Harry?"
"Yes, Professor," Harry said, "I told the whole group the night before we left Hogwarts, even Fred, George and Neville's sister."
"That's good, Harry," Dumbledore said, "It's best for your friends to know the truth. Now back to the reason why I am here. After consideration of the task ahead for you and your friends and what you already have done, I've decided that you all should have advanced lessons in four subjects in addition to continuing your exercises and martial arts. So, I've drawn up a daily schedule for you and your friends to follow this summer. The lessons will be taught here at Potter Manor where you all will be safer."
He handed a short piece of parchment to Harry and he and Ginny went over it. Their eyes bulged at the schedule Dumbledore had created.
7:00 a.m. Wake up
7:15 – 8:15 a.m. Jogging and Exercises
8:30 – 9:00 a.m. Breakfast
9:00 – 10:00 a.m. Martial Arts
10:00 a.m. – 12:00noon Homework
12:00 – 1:00 p.m. Lunch
1:00 – 2:00 p.m. Potions
2:00 – 3:00 p.m. Charms
3:00 – 3:30 p.m. Break
3:30 – 4:30 p.m. Transfiguration
4:30 – 6:00 p.m. Defense
"Err, this practically fills the whole day, Professor," Harry said.
"Yes, it does, Harry," Dumbledore said, a twinkle in his eyes, "However, that's only for weekdays. You will have the weekends to relax and have fun."
"Ron won't be happy with the early wake-up time," Ginny said, a smirk on her face, "Or the short breakfast period."
"That's for sure," Harry agreed. "Professor, why are we taking these four subjects?"
"Well, Harry," Dumbledore said, "There are spells in Charms and Transfiguration that will be useful to you in battle."
"Oh, I see, Professor," Ginny said, "So, we learn the spells in their respective times then practice their use during the hour-and-a-half devoted to Defense."
"Exactly, Ginny," Dumbledore said, delighted with her quick understanding. "Now as to Potions, you will need to learn Potions that are useful for healing and reversing the effects of many Dark Arts spells, potions that are not part of the regular Hogwarts curriculum."
"I guess that's fine," Harry said, "Who's going to be teaching us, Professor?"
"Since school is not in session, your regular professors will be teaching your little group," Dumbledore said. "They are the most qualified in their field and the only people we can trust."
"Even Snape?" Harry asked, his eyes narrowing.
Dumbledore sighed, "That's Professor Snape, Harry and yes, he has my trust. Severus is a Potions master of the highest level. There are only two people who rival him in that field in the whole of Britain."
"Uh, have you told James about these plans, Professor?" Ginny asked, slowly.
"Yes, Professor," Harry said, "Have you told my Dad that Professor Snape will be coming to Potter Manor?"
Dumbledore sighed again, "No, Harry. I have not. I will be informing him as soon as he comes home. I don't especially look forward to it, knowing their history."
"What about Defense, Professor?" Ginny asked. She looked warily at her boyfriend as she continued, "With Professor M-moody gone, who'll be running that?"
Harry tensed up a bit but relaxed when Ginny held his hand and squeezed it gently.
"For now, I will be running your Defense sessions," Dumbledore answered Ginny. "James and Sirius will assist me when they can get off work."
"All right, Professor," Harry said, "Um, I noticed that you've given us two hours a day to work on our summer homework."
"Yes, Harry," Dumbledore said, "I can't let you neglect that since you do have to come back to Hogwarts in September."
"Well, the thing is, we've already been working on that stuff since we got home last Thursday," Harry said, "In fact, we may finish it all by Wednesday, at least me, Ginny, Rose and probably Hermione will. I'm not so sure about Ron, Neville and Ti."
Dumbledore smiled, "That's good to hear, Harry. I'm sure your teachers will be pleased that you attended to your work as soon as you did. In that case, we may be able to move your lessons up to an earlier time."
"Professor," Ginny interrupted, "maybe we can use up that time. Harry, there are still those spells you used in the tournament. Why don't we use those two hours for the others to learn them? That way, we can use the time in Defense for new spells."
"I guess that'll be all right, Gin," Harry said, "But who's going to teach the others?"
"Why don't you try it, Harry?" Ginny said.
"ME!?" Harry exclaimed, wide-eyed, "Why me?"
"Well," Ginny said, "remember last summer, you helped the others with the martial arts moves. You already know the spells. This way, we don't have to use up anyone's time more than we should." She turned her attention to Dumbledore, "What do you think, Professor?"
"That's an excellent suggestion, Ginny," the elderly man said, his eyes twinkling again, "I think you should give it a try, Harry."
"Well, all right," Harry said, "I'll help the others learn the spells."
"Excellent," Dumbledore said, "I'll just adjust the schedule and replace the homework heading with 'Harry's lessons'."
Harry groaned. "Please, Professor. Don't use that. Put something else in."
"All right, Harry," Dumbledore said, smiling, "I'll let you know what I put there."
Just then, Lily came in from the kitchen. She paused when she saw Dumbledore sitting in the living room with her son and his girlfriend.
"Oh, Albus," she said, "I wasn't expecting you here."
"Just popped in to explain a bit of the plans for Harry and his friends this summer, Lily," Dumbledore said, "I was hoping to find you and James first but decided to go ahead and tell Harry and Ginny while waiting for the two of you."
Just then, James Apparated into the living room and repeated his wife's words to Dumbledore.
"Now that you're both here," Dumbledore said, "I wanted to inform you of what I want Harry and his friends to be doing this summer."
He repeated what he had told Harry and Ginny.
As Ginny had guessed, James wasn't happy to have Snape coming to Potter Manor to teach the kids more potions.
"I'm not sure that's a good idea, Albus," James said, "I don't want that slimy git to know where my home is. He's not even a member of the Order."
Dumbledore sighed, "He will be, James. In fact, this evening's meeting will include inducting him and three other people into the Order."
"What!" James exclaimed, his eyes showing his fury. "Why would we let a former Death Eater join the Order?" He ignored the shocked looks on Harry and Ginny's faces.
"I cannot explain it at this time, James," Dumbledore answered. He looked significantly at Harry and Ginny. "But I assure you that I trust Severus completely."
Ginny looked at Harry as she spoke to him mentally, "Did I just hear what your Dad said? Professor Snape was a Death Eater?
"I-I guess so, Gin." Harry said to her, "If that's true then why the hell didn't anyone tell us before? What the bloody hell is he doing teaching in Hogwarts?"
"I don't know, Harry. We can ask your parents later. I doubt Professor Dumbledore will answer us on that since it seems he won't tell your parents why he's joining this Order. What is this Order anyway? Do you know anything about it, Harry?"
"Oh, sorry, Gin. I forgot you were asleep last night when Dad and I first talked. It's the Order of the Phoenix, a group formed by Professor Dumbledore the first time to fight Voldemort."
"Really? Dumbledore formed a group outside the Ministry? Well, I guess that makes sense since the Ministry isn't exactly competent in fighting Dark Wizards. Do you know who is in this Order?"
"No, Ginny, I don't. I never got around to asking Dumbledore or Dad last night. Come to think of it, I wonder if I could join. After all, if I'm the one chosen to destroy Voldieshorts, then I should be part of the group dedicated to fighting him."
"I suppose so, Harry. But I doubt your parents would let you join."
Instead of answering Ginny, Harry turned to Dumbledore. "Professor, I was wondering if I could join the Order."
"No, Harry!" James said immediately, before Dumbledore could answer.
Harry turned to glare at his father. "And why not, Dad? If the Order was created to fight Voldemort, then why can't I be a part of it? I'm the one who's supposed to take the bastard down. Why can't the bloody Boy-Who-Lived be a member of your bloody Order?"
"Harry!" Lily scolded, "Watch your language! You're too young to join the Order."
"Too young, Mum?" Harry said, standing up. "Well, I wasn't too young to be targeted by Voldemort. I've faced him how many times now? Four! I bet that's more times than anyone else in the bloody Order." Just then Ginny slapped him in the back of the head.
"Ow!" Harry said then turned to his girlfriend. "Ginny! What was that for?"
Ginny glared at him as she said, "That was for being disrespectful to your parents, you prat! They're just looking out for you. After all, you haven't exactly got away from those unscathed, have you? They don't just want you to get hurt." She enfolded him in her arms as she added, "Because they love you, as I do."
Harry's anger deflated and he returned her embrace, "I know. I just want to know what's going on. I don't want to be kept in the dark anymore."
He felt a hand gently squeezed his shoulder. He looked up a little to see his father's face with a determined look on it.
"Don't worry, son," James said, "That won't happen anymore. No more secrets." He turned to Dumbledore, "Albus, I know you don't want anyone under-aged to join the Order but I'd like to keep Harry informed of anything concerning him that comes up in our meetings, especially relating to Voldemort."
"That's fine, James," Dumbledore said, "Now, about having Severus come here to teach special potions to Harry and his friends."
"One problem there, Albus," James said, "Bill and I put up a ward against anyone carrying the Dark Mark. As far as I know, he still has it."
"I see," Dumbledore said, "Very well, James. Now I'm not sure who can fill in for him."
"Wait a minute, Professor," Harry said, "You said that there were two people who rival Snape as a Potions master. Who are they? Can't you get one of them?"
"Well, Harry," Dumbledore said, "I might. One of them just happens to already be a member of the Order. It's just that she has no experience teaching which is why I didn't ask her first."
"Who is it, Professor?" Ginny asked him.
"You're talking about me, aren't you, Albus?" Lily said.
"Mum?" Harry said confusion evident on his face.
Dumbledore smiled, "Yes, Harry. Your mother actually tied Severus for the highest score in Potions N.E.W.T.s in the history of Hogwarts."
"She did?" Harry said, looking with awe at his mother. Ginny had the same look on her face.
"Yes, she did," James said, placing his arm around Lily, "In fact, she topped all the subjects she took her N.E.W.T.s in. I was so proud of her."
"So, Lily," Dumbledore said, "will you teach them?"
Lily thought about it for a moment then said, "All right, Albus. I'll do it. I've got the time anyway." Lily had taken a two-year leave of absence from her job at the Ministry Office researching new spells when she had been in the eighth month of her pregnancy with the twins. "If you want, I think I can teach them the Charm spells as well. That way Professor Flitwick doesn't have to be here."
"That would be splendid, Lily," Dumbledore said, "Filius will be delighted that he can go on his holiday. All right, it's settled then. I'll inform Frank, Alice, Sirius, Molly and Arthur about the summer plans for Harry and his friends after the meeting tonight."
"What about Hermione, Professor?" Harry inquired.
"I will visit Hermione before the meeting and tell her parents that she'll be part of a special summer program for advanced magic. That should allow Hermione to join you. Perhaps she can stay at the Burrow later this summer."
"That's good, Professor," Ginny said, grinning, "I bet Ron would love that."
Dumbledore smiled. "Yes, I'm sure he would."
"Um, Professor," Harry said, "do Neville's parents know about Rose's prophecy?"
"Not yet, Harry," Dumbledore said, "However, I have to inform them about it so they will know why their son needs that level of training. Don't worry, Harry. I will not let anyone else know that prophecy. If Voldemort were to find out about it, he would do all in his power to harm your friends."
Dumbledore then rose to his feet, "I need to be going. I still have to visit the Grangers. James, Lily, I'll see you two at Headquarters later." He gave a smile to Harry and Ginny, "I'll see you two young people tomorrow at breakfast. James will supervise your exercise and martial arts sessions."
The elderly wizard stepped up to the fireplace and threw some Floo powder into the flames. After yelling, "Hogwarts, headmaster's office," he disappeared in the green flames.
Harry turned to his parents, his eyes blazing, "So, Dad, Mum, is that really true? Was Snape a Death Eater?"
James sighed and ran his hand through his messy hair, a behavior Harry had inherited from him, "Yes, Harry, it's true. Snape was a Death Eater in the last War."
"Then why the bloody hell is he teaching at Hogwarts?" Harry demanded.
"Harry!" Lily said, "Watch your language! I won't warn you again."
"All right, all right," Harry said.
After a few seconds, James said, "I'm not happy to have him there either, Harry. But there was a trial back then, about two months after we were attacked and Voldemort vanished. Albus gave his word under oath that Snape regretted joining the Death Eaters and was truly sorry for all he had done while serving Voldemort. I think he used Legilimency on him to make sure of that. Soon after, Snape started teaching Potions at Hogwarts. I really don't know how he managed to gain Albus' confidence but I have to trust Albus that he knows what he's doing, especially having him join the Order."
"Well, speaking of the Order," Harry said. "from what Professor Dumbledore said, Neville's parents, Ginny's parents and Sirius are in the Order. Last night, Dad mentioned someone named Mundungus Fletcher as being in the Order. Who else are in it?"
"Well, there's one way to answer that," James said. He got up and climbed the stairs to the second floor. Harry looked at his mother who shrugged her shoulders.
They heard some banging and other sounds of moving furniture. A couple of minutes later, they heard him coming down the stairs.
James came up to Harry and handed him something. As he took hold of it, Harry saw that it was a tattered old Wizarding photo of a group of people, waving and smiling.
"That, Harry, is a picture of the original Order of the Phoenix."
"Oh, I remember that," Lily said, "Wasn't that taken at the first meeting of the Order, six months before we went into hiding?"
"Yes, it was," James said softly as he sat down on Harry's side opposite Ginny. Lily sat beside Ginny.
"There we are," James said, grimacing, "beside Wormtail." He pointed to their younger selves, seated on either side of their former friend. "There's Sirius and Remus behind us and Frank and Alice Longbottom to their left. Hagrid's right over there."
Ginny then gasped and pointed to two young men with red hair whose faces bore a resemblance to Molly, "J-James, are those my uncles, Gideon and Fabian."
James sighed, "Yes, Ginny. Those are your mother's brothers. True Gryffindors they were. It took five Death Eaters to kill them."
"I've seen only one picture of them," Ginny said softly, "Mum never talks about them but Dad told me about them once. He said she visits their graves once a year, on the day they died."
"Dad," Harry said, "how many of these people were killed after this was taken?"
"Too many, Harry, too many, there's Edgar Bones, Amelia's brother. You know his daughter, Susan. She was the only survivor of the attack on their family. That's Marlene McKinnon, she and her whole family were killed two weeks after this was taken…..Benjy Fenwick, Caradoc Dearborn, Dorcas Meadowes….."
Then Harry saw him. His nose was still intact and there was less gray in his hair but it was unmistakably Moody.
Harry felt the tears form in his eyes as he stared at the figure of his late DADA teacher smile grimly beside Dumbledore. He felt Ginny's arm wrap around him as she sensed his change in mood.
Noticing that his son had grown silent, James took the photo from his hand and placed it in his pocket before turning to face Harry.
"These were good strong wizards and witches, Harry but it didn't stop them from getting killed. I understand that you would want to join the fight against Voldemort. But first, you have to be prepared so you don't end up getting killed. We want you to survive, son, so you and this young lady can have a long life together. I'll tell you as much as you need to know, Harry but for now, you can't be part of the Order. Okay?"
Harry nodded. "Okay, Dad. Just don't keep anything from me anymore and I won't push to be part of the Order."
"All right, son, that's a deal."
A/N: Well, how was that? It may be noted that I changed the incantation of the Bat-Bogey hex. Though it was original, I found it too long if someone wanted to beat someone casting the Killing Curse to the punch. It has the same number of syllables as the Avada Kedavra and may not be fast enough. Of course, if a lot of you want it, I can go back to the original or a shorter version like Chirop mucus. Please R&R.