Mother's Blood
by Stellamaru

"I put my trust, therefore, in your mother's blood. I delivered you to her sister, her only remaining relative."
Dumbledore to Harry, OotP.

"My little flower maidens." That's what their mother always called them. "There're my little flower maidens... Petunia dear, why don't you smile a bit? Can't let Lily take all the spotlight."

Lily and Petunia Evans's favorite game together was "Magical Doorway." They just knew if they looked hard enough, they could find a doorway into a magical land, like Narnia. They hunted everywhere, and even spent a memorable hour huddled in their grandmother's wardrobe, waiting for the secret panel to open. Lily was better at finding possible locations, but Petunia was an enthusiastic player. "What should we do first, once we find it?" she asked. "Do you think there'll be elves and fairies and giants?" It was always better when Lily did the talking and imagining about what they would do, and Petunia had learned how to get her started.

Lily rolled her eyes. "Of course, silly. It's magic. There'll be unicorns, too. First thing I'm going to do is find a unicorn. I'd like to have a pet unicorn."

Petunia nodded. She'd like that, too. What she really wanted, however, was to be a princess. A fairy princess-- no, that was a little too impossible. A fine lady was better; someone who wore elegant gowns and held her hand out for handsome knights with blond hair to kiss. She closed her eyes and gripped Lily's hand and wished along with her, but no doorway ever appeared. She couldn't ever shake that niggling thought in the back of her head, the one that said, "There's no such thing as magic."


When Lily was eleven, she received a letter. A beautiful letter written in dark green ink on thick, yellow paper. It said she was special, and she was invited to attend an exclusive school. At first, their parents scoffed. They said it must be some strange prank, someone from dad's office, maybe. He said he was going to give hell on Monday for teasing his daughter.

Then the second letter came, born by a large brown owl. This letter was from something called the Ministry of Magic, and it said they could expect an escort from the department of Muggle relations to help them with their shopping.

Lily was fairly bursting with excitement. Their parents were still cautious, but the letter looked quite official, and had the words "department" and "relations," which boded well, even if they didn't know what "Muggle" meant. Dad was still skeptical, and said something about it coming from one of Mum's weird encounter group friends. "Why couldn't you do charity or join a gardening society like everyone else's wives?" he said, grumbling over his paper.

"I do charity," Mum said, smiling.

"I mean a proper charity," dad said. "Not some strange-- a proper charity, like a museum or unwed mothers." He folded his paper decisively. "I'm going to work come Monday: you can deal with this."

Later, in the kitchen, Petunia touched the hard purple wax seal on the envelope, lying discarded on the counter. "H," she said, tracing the symbols etched around the large letter in the center.

On Monday, a rap on the door signaled the arrival of the escort. Mr. Parkworth, "Please call me Edgar," as he introduced himself, was a tall, thin man, who was dressed like he stepped out of a Magritte painting. Black suit, bowler hat, everything. Only he'd tied his tie in a large bow around the outside of his collar. It wasn't even a bow tie, Petunia thought.

He took Lily, their mother, and Petunia into London. He didn't want to take Petunia, but dad was at work, so it couldn't be helped. Everyone on the street stared at his odd appearance, even the scruffiest people. He smiled widely at everyone, saying, "Good day," and, "Lovely weather, isn't it?" People for the most part smiled back, and then walked away shaking their heads. Petunia wanted to sink into the ground. What if someone thought he was her dad?

In a small London courtyard, Petunia finally saw the magical doorway. It opened, not on to a bright field filled with gamboling unicorns, but on a street lined with shops.

Lily purchased a wand, her uniform, and some books. "Isn't it amazing?" she said, grabbing Petunia's arm. "And it's all really real!" Petunia nodded. It was remarkable, but it was so much more shabby and run down than she had imagined. You'd think if magic were well and truly real, someone could clean things up a bit.

"It is amazing," Petunia said, but she didn't smile. "Do you think there's a place where we can wash our hands?" They had eaten some candy that didn't seem to want to stay put, and her fingers were sticky with chocolate.

"I'm sure there is," Lily said, looking around for Edgar. He had slowed behind them, chatting with their mother. They stood together outside a small shop that appeared to sell tiny boxes that snapped open and shut at random.

Lily opened her mouth to call out, when three older boys passed them on the street and bumped into her, sending her packages flying. "Mudblood," said one of them.

"And her Muggle family," said another, stopping to look at them. He was a pale blond boy with a sharp face. Petunia thought he might be handsome, until he spoke again. "As I live and breathe, Muggles in Diagon Alley. I do hope she isn't bound for Hogwarts. We don't need her kind there."

"'Fraid she is, Lucius," said one of the boys, picking up Lily's package of books. He sniffed and held them out to her, only to drop them when she reached to take them. "Oops," he said, smirking.

"Well," the blond boy said, "I hope you have lovely time in Hufflepuff, Mudblood."

Edgar looked up and rushed over. "Malfoy, that's quite enough," he said, tilting his bowler hat and frowning.

The boys glared at him. "Yes, sir, Mr. Parkbench," the blond boy said, making a show of bowing his head before slinking off with his cronies.

"Sorry about that," Edgar said, turning to Lily. "Some of the older wizarding families have... old fashioned ideas about educating people with a, er, non-wizard background."

Lily smiled, but her manner was considerably less excited. Petunia could think of only one thing: through the magical doorway, she was looked down upon. Lily was too, because of who her family was. If there were any fine ladies in elegant gowns in this place, someone named 'Evans' would never be one of them.


And so it was, Lily went off to school and Petunia stayed. No letter ever arrived for her.

Lily came back every summer filled with miraculous tales. Every once in a while, Petunia found some foul-smelling herb lying around, or a packet that jumped away when she tried to pick it up, but other than that, she could pretend her sister was off at a normal school.

Her fifth year, Lily came back fuming. "I hate that James Potter," she said, throwing herself on her bed. "He's insufferable! Just because he can play Quiddich, and he's got his own little gang of lapdogs, he thinks he can rule the school."

Petunia bit her lip. She wasn't going to ask what Quiddich was, she wasn't.


At the end of her seventh year, Lily brought James Potter home to meet mum and dad. He was polite and well behaved, and almost looked normal except for the wild hair and the wand. Petunia thought he was terribly good-looking, in spite of being so unusual. He said, "Thank you Mrs. Evans, this will do nicely," when shown the guest room, next to Petunia's room. Petunia heard Lily creeping down the hall to his room when the family was asleep. "Why didn't you Apparate?" he whispered.

"Too noisy," Lily said. Then they stopped talking.


The next day, Petunia overheard Lily and James. They seemed quite worried about something. "I don't want anything to happen to my parents." That was Lily, whispering in the kitchen. Petunia hovered on the stair, just out of sight. "They couldn't protect themselves if--"

"Nothing's going to happen to them, Lil. Except for Dumbledore, I think we're the only one's who know much of anything about them."

"But it wouldn't be difficult to find them, if my name should come up-- if there are interrogations...."

"Already thinking we'll be caught? That's nice," James said, amusement tingeing his voice.

"Some of us probably will be. It's foolish not to think so. You-Know-Who isn't playing a game; it isn't Quiddich, James. You can't just catch the snitch and thumb your nose at all the goals Slytherin scored. We're talking about lives, not points."

"Is this why you haven't told your parents we're going to get married, yet?"

Petunia stifled a gasp and they stopped talking.

"It's my sister," Lily whispered. "Petunia? Are you there? Have you been listening?"

Petunia stepped around the corner, into the kitchen. "You-- you're planning something criminal, aren't you? You're going to- to rob a bank or something with your wands." Her voice felt unnaturally high.

"No, no, Petunia," James said quickly. "Nothing like that. We- we were--"

"You wouldn't understand," Lily broke in. "It's got to do with--"

"Your kind?" The amount of venom in the question surprised Petunia herself.


A week later, Petunia agreed to go out to dinner with Vernon Dursley. He'd asked her several times before, but she'd put him off. Now, Vernon, with his new job at Grunnings and his tidy hair, seemed exactly what she wanted. He was perfectly ordinary and unremarkable in every way. They married quickly, as Petunia was eager to start building her own household--a place where there would be no surprises.

Lily married James, of course; and, of course, their mother was delighted. "Going to have another little magician soon?" she said, rubbing her hands together. "Oh, a grandchild to spoil rotten! That's what I want. You, too, Petunia dear... Which one of my little flower maidens can give me a grandchild first, I wonder?"


The accident happened before she could find out. A head-on collision, driving home from an evening out. Mr. and Mrs. Evans were killed instantly.


At the funeral, holding her hand over the tiny lump that would be little Dudley (or Diantha), clutching Vernon's arm in her other hand, Petunia watched Lily and James. Others of their kind, grown men with long hair and strange clothing surrounded them. They all looked around nervously, and kept their hands inside their pockets. Lily wouldn't let go of her wand, tucked in the belt of her dress.

Petunia's grip on Vernon's arm tightened as the service went on. After, outside in the cemetery, she stumbled and Vernon caught her. "Are you all right?" James asked, cradling Lily against him. Petunia looked at his face, pinched and tired, and Lily's, pale and frightened. The idea bloomed within her and she knew-- knew.

"This wasn't an accident, was it?" she said, her arm trembling. "This had something to do with your lot. Something happened in- in your world, and mum and dad got killed for it." Vernon tried to pull her away.

"Petunia, dear, don't make a scene," he said, but she was insistent.

"You've killed them!"

Lily shuddered, tears forming in her eyes. "Petunia--"

"No!" Petunia covered her stomach with both hands. "Stay away from us, you- you freak. We don't want you. I don't want to see you ever again." Once it was said, Petunia felt calmer, and drew herself up straight. She met her sister's green eyes for the last time. "Don't come near us, ever."


Lily didn't. Nine months later, she sent them a birth announcement in the regular--normal--manner, not by some smelly bird. Petunia dropped it in the trash bin, after noting that her Dudley had been born first.

Petunia forgot about playing games with Lily. She forgot that she ever thought James Potter was polite and good looking in spite of everything else. Everything she had, everything she was, she poured into creating the most normal and un-extraordinary home she could imagine. Vernon was pleased beyond a doubt. She became a gossip, a busybody, and a fussbudget. No one was going to look at number four, Privet Drive and think it could be in any way out of the ordinary; no one was going to connect it to Lily's kind.

So, on that warm Wednesday morning, when Petunia went to set out the milk bottles and found a small dark child with Lily's eyes staring up at her, it was only natural she should scream. Swallowing back a second scream, she pulled out the letter tucked in the child's blankets. The thick paper and writing told her whom it was from. "Mrs. Petunia Dursley, Front Stoop, 4 Privet Drive, Little Whinging, Surrey," it read. Ten years after Lily received hers, Petunia finally had a letter of her own. She opened it quickly and read of her sister's death, and of what she was asked to do.

That morning, she put her foot down with Vernon. We'll keep him away from their lot, she said. We'll make sure he doesn't ever know about them. We'll raise him to be a proper little boy, one who's humble and respectful, she said. It would be more difficult than with Dudley, she said, since Harry had two strikes against him in his parentage, but they would do it. Vernon said they should send the child to an orphanage.

"No," she said. "I won't. He- he's my blood kin."


Silverlake: Authors / Mediums / Titles / Links / List / About / Plain Style / Fancy Style