The Old Walls Crumble by cearrae
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Disclaimer.
This story is based on characters and situations created and owned by JK Rowling, various publishers including but not limited to Bloomsbury Books, Scholastic Books and Raincoast Books, and Warner Bros., Inc. No money is being made and no copyright or trademark infringement is intended.

What every holiday you were this celebrating this weekend, I hope it was a good one. We are still winding down quickly on the story and it looks like the timing of the storyline and calendar date are beginning to meet “ Interesting, what would Trelawney say?

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“Mr. Weasley, Mr. Weasley,” cried Hermione as she ran into the kitchen of Grimmauld Place. “You must read this.” She passed him a sheet of paper with a print out from her parents computer. “Remus and I apparated to my house first thing, as usual; this came last night.”

“A delivery to be picked up at the London Euston station around ten o’clock. Expect a phone call at the ministry. Another will arrive late in the evening, delivered to the front door. What in Merlin’s name is he talking about?” Arthur frowned over the e-mail message.

“I don’t like the sounds of this, Arthur. You should take some precautions. Maybe Alastor could go with you,” Molly suggested.

Arthur stood to leave, “Molly, Euston is totally Muggle. I might as well take a house elf to carry the delivery as soon as ask Mad-eye to go.” He pecked his wife on the cheek. “He’s a smart one, Severus is. He’s making sure he uses Muggle locations for contact points. It’s safer for him and for us. Not to worry, I’ll be fine. As for later; well, the Order will be here.”

Molly watched her husband leave for work. Within moments, the clock she’d moved from the Burrow to Grimmauld Place showed him as travelling, then as at work. She would look at the clock every few minutes for the rest of the day until he was safely home.

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Jenny sat and looked out of the window for the three hour trip to London. She’d tried to read a paper, but her mind would wander and she’d read and re-read the same paragraph repeatedly before giving in. The fog hadn’t lifted nor had it gotten heavier. A dreary gloom seemed to permeate the atmosphere, leaving everyone drawn and distant. There was little conversation in the carriage; a toddler cried intermittently throughout the trip. The journey felt more like they were accompanying a funeral bier than making a commuter’s jaunt.

With a sigh, Jenny took more notice when they got into the outskirts of London. The train slowed through the many switches and finally glided into Euston Station at ten minutes before ten in the morning. She got off the train and looked around wondering where she should go. Looking up at the signs, she decided to go to the centre of the station to call; perhaps this Mr. Weasley would direct her from there. When Jenny got to the information hub, she stopped at a vacant seat and pulled out her mobile. She dialled the number Severus had given her and sat down.

“Ministry of Magic, Muggle Communications Office, “announced a very typical sounding receptionist.

“Oh, uhm, may I speak to Arthur Weasley, please?” Jenny asked.

“Whom may I say is calling?” asked the voice.

“He’s not met me before. It’s about a delivery he was expecting.” Jenny hoped that was enough.

“One moment please, while I contact Mr. Weasley.” The call was obviously put on hold, as Jenny heard music. She didn’t recognize the rock tune, but the lyrics were saying something about ‘Dance like a Hippogriff’, what ever the hell that was.

“Hello?” A male voice came on the line.

“Is that you Mr. Weasley?” asked Jenny.

“Yes; who am I speaking with?” he asked.

“Jenny Doulton. I have something you have been expecting, I believe,” she told him, not wanting to reveal too much.

“Excellent; you are at the Euston railway station are you not?” He asked.

“Yes, at the information booth,” she replied.

“Go to the Euston Road exit to the Tube and wait there. I’ll be with you in a jiffy,” said Arthur.

“Alright, I’ll be there. Oh, I’m wearing a grey coloured raincoat and I’m carrying a briefcase.” She told him.

“So is everyone else in Muggle London, my dear. Don’t worry, I’ll find you.” He hung up at that.

Jenny waited at the doors, looking around for someone looking for her. She had started to consider calling Severus when a tall, thin man with balding red hair approached her.

“Are you Miss Doulton?” he asked.

“Yes and you’d be Mr. Weasley?” Jenny responded.

“Call me Arthur,” he said holding out his hand. “Welcome to London. I’m sorry it was an inauspicious greeting, but given the way things are…” he left the rest unsaid.

“I understand. Now what?” she asked.

“Let’s get you to a safe place. You’ll get to meet everyone there. I’m sure you have lots to tell us and my wife will be making lunch shortly.” He opened the door and let Jenny precede him through, then offered his arm as he led her to the Tube station.

They exited the Kings Cross station and walked the rest of the way. When they stopped in front of some run down houses, Mr. Weasley pulled out a scrap of paper and passed it to her.
Jenny read the writing ‘The Headquarters of the Order of the Phoenix may be found at 12 Grimmauld Place’.

“What does this me...Bloody hell?” Jenny watched as a house seemed to squeeze itself into being between two others.

“Come on then,” said Arthur, pulling her along. “Now, be very quiet when you’re in the front hall. There’s a portrait that doesn’t take kindly to Muggles.” He opened the door and let her enter.

Jenny walked into an ancient house that had obviously seen better days. She could smell pine cleaner, lavender and mothballs that seemed to suit the place to a tee. Arthur indicated she should go upstairs. On the next landing, Arthur ushered her into a room that looked to be a library. Several people were there and all looked up as they entered.

“Hello everyone, I’ve just gotten the delivery from our accomplice,” he told them, as he rubbed his palms together.

Remus stood and came towards them, “Is this lady the delivery, Arthur?”

“OH, uhm...Jenny?” he looked at her, embarrassed that he hadn’t asked the obvious.

Jenny held out the brief case, “I was asked to bring this to you.”

Arthur took the briefcase and handed it off to Remus. “Let me introduce you to Miss Jenny Doulton, a Muggle. Jenny this is Remus Lupin,” he began to introduce her around.

“Miss Doulton,” said Lupin, shaking her hand.

“And this is Hermione, Harry, Tonks, my son Ronald and my daughter Ginny,” he continued, pointing to everyone in turn.

“How do you do, Miss Doulton; did you have to travel far?” Tonks asked the question nonchalantly, but had looked for information in the answer to the whereabouts of Snape.

“Please call me Jenny,” she requested, and with a suspicious feeling in her gut, continued, “I travelled most of the night.”

“You must be exhausted; Ginny, go and get some tea,” instructed Arthur, leading Jenny to a chair.

“Are you working in Scotland, Jenny?” asked Tonks, as Ginny left for the kitchen.

“No,” replied Jenny.

“How did you come to know, our mutual friend,” asked Hermione, ignoring the sick look on Ron’s face.

“I work in a library and he was doing some research. I gave him a little assistance.” Jenny smiled innocently.

“So, he had access a computer at the library then?” asked Harry.

“No, he used my personal PC. Are you all witches and wizards?” Jenny asked finally.

Harry nodded, “Yeah, pretty much. Hermione’s parents are Muggles. We’ve gotten the messages through them.”

Jenny was surprised, “You mean your mum and dad don’t have to be magic for you to be a witch?”

“Not necessarily, Jenny. Any combination of magic folk or Muggle will do.” Lupin smiled kindly at her, fully aware she wasn’t telling all. He also decided to let it go for now.

Ginny came back, floating a tea tray in front of her. “Good girl, Ginny. How do you take your tea, Jenny?” asked Arthur.

Jenny watched, bemused at the sight of a teapot being levitated and the milk and sugar floating towards her.

Remus, in the mean time, had called Harry over as he opened the brief case to reveal the Ravenclaw sceptre. “Go on Harry; test it as I’ve shown you.”

Harry pulled out his wand and passed it over the object chanting,” Revelo Fragmen Anima.” They both watched as the sickly green glow emanated from it.

“Remus, “asked Harry, “is he on our side or not?”

“For now, Harry, I’d say he’s on his own side. We’ll know very soon what is in his mind.” Remus closed up the case and took it to store with the other Horcruxes.

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Snape and Malfoy stood on the same rocky beach that had seen the departure of Draco scant months ago. The rental car was parked on the roadway on the mainland. The sun had barely set off Holy Island when the ship from Durmstrang appeared. As soon as the gang plank touched the shore, Draco and his companion descended to dry land.

“Father,” began Draco, only to be pulled into a hug that smothered all other speech.

“Lucius, we must go now,” said Snape.

“Of course, come,” said Lucius, leaning on his son.

“Who is your companion, Draco?” asked Snape as he made a quick return to the car.

“You’ve already met sir; it’s Victor Krum.” Draco smiled at his revelation.

Severus glanced over at the other man who had the hood of his cloak drawn up.

“Krum; what the bloody hell are you doing here?” asked Severus.

Krum looked at Snape, “I haff my own reasons, professor. I lost my High Master Karkaroff to Him; he vos my mentor and my friend.”

The reached the car, which earned strange looks from the younger wizards.

“Ask no questions, just get in and shut up,” ordered Snape.

The two Malfoy’s got in the back where they could speak, leaving Krum in the front.

One stop for refreshment and five and a half hours later, Severus pulled up in front of the hidden house on Grimmauld Place.

“Severus, why are we here?” asked Lucius, recognizing the neighbourhood.

“Hidden in plain sight, old friend,” said Severus, as he got out of the car and stretched. He pulled out a scrap of paper from his pants pocket and handed it to Draco. “You must all read this.”

When they had each read the scrap, their heads looked up towards the appearing house.

“Fidelius,” muttered Krum.

“Indeed.” Snape turned to them, “This won’t be easy. Except for Krum, we’re basically persona non grata here. They’ll take our wands at the very least.”

Draco looked at his father who nodded his understanding.

Krum frowned, “Vhy, professor? Are you not fighting vith them against Him?”

“They’re not sure of that anymore. Had you not heard of the events of last May and June?”

“Only vhat Drago told me. You are very brave,” Krum told him.

Snape snorted, “That is not the popular opinion here.”

Xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

The Order’s meeting had been convened in the library of Grimmauld Place. Theories had been passed around and Jenny had been questioned ad nauseum about Snape. She had skirted around giving away too much, but she could see they were becoming annoyed.

Moody was becoming impatient. “What is the next delivery?” he demanded of Jenny.

“Sir, Severus didn’t give me any information. I was to bring the briefcase and wait. That is all
I know.” Jenny was becoming annoyed at the deformed man’s belligerent tone.

“Aye, well; I suppose he’s not willing to give information to his mistress.” Moody sniffed and pulled a handkerchief out to blow his nose.

Jenny looked around at the others sitting in the room. They avoided her eyes and some looked embarrassed. The one called McGonagall looked more than a little angry.

“Mr. Moody, exactly what are you inferring?” asked Jenny, her temper beginning to rise.

Moody looked at her, “I think you’re a little tart that Severus picked up in a pub and pulled into his slimy lair. He puts you on a pedestal and you do his bidding.” He offered a lecherous sneer.

Jenny walked to him and yelled into his face, “You are nothing but a filthy minded old pervert. You know nothing about me. I have principles and I don’t bend them.”

“Principles, you say? If that were true, you’d never have given a second look to the greasy git.” Moody looked down his nose at her. “I think you became his little piece on the side out of desperation.”

Jenny’s hand connected with the side of his face so hard and fast that Moody’s Magical eye was dislodged and fell to the floor. Minerva got up and came to stand behind the Muggle.

“Alastor, that is quite enough. You have no right to malign Miss Doulton’s character in such a manner. I object to your use of such language in front of our younger members,” McGonagall told him.

Moody picked his eye up from the floor and wiped it with the handkerchief before replacing it. “I think we should just Obliviate her and send her back to her pathetic little life without the memory’s of Snape and us. She looks the type to be a spinster anyways.”

Just as Jenny was about to object, a tinkling bell sounded through the house.

“The next delivery,” said Arthur Weasley. He stood and made his way to the door.

“Wait,” said Remus, “We should have a few of us there.” He looked over his shoulder and nodded at Kingsley Shacklebolt and Bill Weasley. “We’ll all answer the door.”

The four men went to check on the delivery, leaving the others sitting in an uncomfortable silence. Several minutes later, Arthur opened the door with a stunned look on his face.

“You’d better get a hold of yourselves. Ron,” he looked intently at his son and nodded towards Harry. “This isn’t what we expected.”

Ron stepped closer to his friend who was staring intently at the door. Arthur stood to one side admitting two blond haired men, one walking with a limp.

“Draco,” gasped a surprised Ginny.

Tonks stood quickly, “Uncle Lucius, how...” She stopped, as his condition made itself known.

“Say hello to your cousin, Nymphadora, Draco,” said Lucius, his voice a pale echo of his renowned arrogance.

Several of the Order had pulled their wands at the sight of the Death Eater. The next figure through the door was an even greater surprise.

“Victor!” exclaimed Hermione, walking over to take his hand.

“Hermyonniny, you look effen more beautiful than I remembered,” Krum told her gallantly, while he bowed and kissed her hand.

A final figure wearing short dark hair and a beard and moustache, walked through the door and stopped. Gasps of recognition passed around the room and every wand was pointed at him except for Fred and Ron’s. They were struggling with Harry.

“Gerroff me. I’m going to kill the bastard!” he yelled. Fred had pulled Harry’s wand hand up and allowed a burst of magic to be sent up to the ceiling pulling down some plaster.

Jenny ran to Severus and wrapped her arms around him, “Severus, I was so worried. I thought you weren’t coming.”

Whatever reaction the Order members expected of the man, the sight of Snape holding and comforting a Muggle was pretty near the bottom of the list.

“It’s all right, Jenny. I told you no one would hurt you.” He held her close and stroked her hair. Jenny was shaking her head where it lay on his shoulder. “What happened? Did someone threaten you?” he asked, his voice becoming dark.

“The one called Moody; he wants to do something to my mind to make me forget you. Oblivious or something...” She looked up at him. He was staring at the man with the strange eye.

“So Mad-eye, you still get your thrills from intimidating those weaker than you. You lay a finger on her, and you’ll find out what happens when my Muggle side gets angry.” Severus glared at him.

“Big talk from a man about to have his soul sucked out!” spat Moody.

“Enough!” shouted Lupin, who’d returned with Shacklebolt and Bill. “Let’s have everyone put their wands away before there’s an accident.” He strode over to where Ron and Fred were still restraining Harry. He plucked Harry’s wand from Fred’s hand and pocketed it. “You, Mr Potter, will get this back when learn to behave yourself.”

Kingsley held up four wands, “They all surrendered their wands when they stepped through the door. They’ve agreed we can hold them in safe keeping for now.”

“Victor’s not under suspicion,” Hermione said in his defence.

“I don’t now about that, girly. Look who he’s keeping company with,” said Moody, his magical eye never leaving Snape.

McGonagall decided to take control. “Enough of these accusations; Mr. Krum, why are you here?” she asked.

Victor looked at Harry, “I haff lost people I respected to this monster. First was Cedric, a proud Trivizard Champion. He voss a good and decent vizard; he should not haff died. I remember the one who looked like him,” he pointed at Moody, “cursing me. It was partly my fault. Then, Master Karkaroff was taken. He vass my friend.” He looked down at Hermione. “Vhen Drago told me off what he vas doing, it vas my duty to come. It vas my honour as vell.”

“Well said, Krum,” offered Arthur, as he extended his hand to Victor. Hermione pulled Victor over to the side where there was an empty chair.

“And you, Lucius Malfoy, why are you and your son here?” McGonagall had asked this in a far less amiable tone than what she had offered Victor.

“For the same reason Krum is,” Lucius replied, “You know, of course. He killed her with His Own wand in front of Draco. She was betrayed by one who would call himself my friend,” he spat at last. Finally, in a defeated tone he asked, “Do you know what happened to her body?”

“I identified her and claimed it, Uncle Lucius. We buried her in the Black Family tomb,” Tonks told him quietly.

Lucius nodded, “Thank you, niece.”

“Thank you, cousin. It was most generous of you, considering...”began Draco, but his voice trailed off.

“Considering you treated me and my family like shit all these years? Yeah well, Aunty Cissy was still family. It was the right thing to do.” Tonks stared at each of them straight in the eye. Neither could hold her gaze. “I suppose you want to do the right thing now, then.” Tonks watched the two Malfoy’s look at each other.

“I think Albus would have agreed that it’s never too late to do the right thing.” Arthur looked at his personal nemesis and held out his hand. “We’ll never be friends; I’ll settle for not being enemies.”

Lucius looked at the proffered hand before he took it and shook, “Indeed, Weasley; not enemies it is.”

Minerva walked over to Severus and Jenny, “I hardly recognized you, Severus. You look so mu..”

“Go ahead and say it, Minerva. I look like a Muggle. Is it such a shock I should know how?” he asked.

She shook her head, “I suppose not. Where have you been, how have you lived?” she asked.

Severus snorted, “You don’t actually expect me to answer that, do you?”

“We’ll be getting answers from you soon enough, Snape,” snarled Moody.

“Minerva, we need to speak to you and Lupin alone,” said Snape, ignoring the blustering Auror.

“We, Severus?” Minerva had no idea what he wanted in the meeting.

“It is important, but we should limit those who know for now.” He looked at Lupin, hoping the man would sense his urgency. “Time is of the essence.”

Minerva looked at Remus, who nodded once. “Alright then; Molly, can you get the others accommodated?” asked McGonagall.

“Of course, Professor.” Molly bustled out to do her duty.

“Now, if everyone else would excuse us,” instructed McGonagall, then watched as the order filed out.

“You shouldn’t be alone with him,” said Moody, staring threateningly at Snape.

“We’ll be fine; Kingsley has his wand and Lupin will be here.” Minerva just wanted Mad-eye to leave.

“Don’t take your eye’s off him for a second,” said Moody, before stomping off in search of the kitchen.

“Hermione, can you stay?” called Remus, as she was following Krum out.

“If you need me, of course, Remus,” she replied with uncertainty. As the last of the Order members filed out, Hermione closed the door. Lupin came forward to ward and soundproof the room.

Jenny still stood with Severus’ arm around her shoulder. He pushed her to a chair and turned once more to McGonagall.

“Where is Albus’ portrait?” he demanded.

“His portrait, Severus?” asked Minerva, confused at the request.

“I know he has one here, where is it?” he demanded.

Lupin brought a frame to the table in the centre of the room, “Here it is, Severus. Why do you need to see it?”

Severus pulled up a chair and sat before the picture of Albus Dumbledore sleeping in his wingback chair.

“I’m finally here, old man. It’s about time you set things straight,” announced Snape.

The portrait began to stir, yawning deeply and stretching at length. With a sigh, Portrait Albus began to speak.

“It’s about time boy. I’ve been sitting here for a donkey’s age. Even art work can get a sore backside from sitting in one position for too long.” Dumbledore’s image became animated with his colourful robes moving with his gestures and his renowned blue eye’s twinkling brighter than any star in the night sky ever did.

Minerva sank into a chair beside Severus. ”Albus, you woke up at last, “she said, her voice sounding tremulous.

The portrait looked at her, “I have an awful secret to share, Minerva. I’ve been conscious for quite a while. Before my soul took flight, Severus and I had some long discussions. Keeping me uninvolved for a while after my passing was one of the topics.”

“But why, Albus? We needed your wisdom many times,” Minerva told him, confused at what she was hearing.

The portrait Albus smiled, “Minerva, have one of the Castle elves fetch the coffer contained beneath the pensieve in my office. Remus, I believe you are there, come where I can see you.” She left to do his bidding, flooing Hogwarts Kitchens.

Lupin stepped in front of the small portrait, “You’re long overdue, Professor. Why did you make us wait?” he asked.

Dumbledore shared his ubiquitous smile, “Patience is a virtue.” He tapped the side of his nose with his finger and reached out for a lemon drop from the dish of sweets in the picture. As he popped it in his mouth, they all imagined they could smell lemon in the air.

“Severus, I believe Miss Granger is there and someone else.” Dumbledore was peering out from the frame to look for the others.

Hermione stood behind McGonagall. “I thought I saw you almost frown, before, Professor.”

Dumbledore chuckled, “I’ve been hard put not to laugh out loud sometimes, Miss Granger. All those lists...tut, tut.” He waved his index finger at her.

Hermione blushed, remembering what he was talking about.

Severus had summoned Jenny to stand beside him, “Albus, this is Jenny Doulton.”

The blue eyes in the portrait passed between the man and woman. “Miss Doulton, I wish I’d had the pleasure of meeting you while I was alive. I see you and Severus have become close; I am pleased my boy.”

A sudden pop made Jenny jump. She turned to where the sound came from and saw the strangest creature she’d ever beheld.

“What’s that?” she asked Snape.

“That is an elf.” He replied, getting up to open a cabinet off to one side. “Albus, the pensieve memories can be done in the morning. For now, we must discuss the last Horcrux.”

“You have discovered and recovered them all?” asked Dumbledore.

“All but one; it cannot be touched by anyone who is magic,” Severus revealed.

“That would be Godric’s object, wouldn’t it Professor?” asked Hermione.

Severus looked at her; “I’m not your profes...” he snapped and was interrupted,

“You will always be my professor, Professor Snape. To say or think otherwise is just stupid.” Hermione fixed him with a determined glare. “There is more to the Headmaster dying and you disappearing than any of us knows, isn’t there? That’s why you sent us the horcruxes and why you’re here now.”

“Two words, Miss Granger; curiosity and cat,” Snape spat at her.

“It’s up North, isn’t it? It’s a heraldic item emblazoned with a griffin and it will be somewhere close to the Moors,” Hermione stated with conviction. “I needed to get to the Domesday Book; I knew it.” She began to chew her bottom lip in frustration.

“It wouldn’t have helped you,” said Jenny quietly. “I had to search through churches in the region and then enter search criteria for separate searches. There were a number of hits but they all pointed to one place.”

“What is she talking about, Severus?” asked Minerva.

“We did our searches through a computer. It turns out; Gryffindor’s object is hidden in plain sight in a church in...”

“Great Driffield “ it turned out to be Great Driffield, didn’t it?” exclaimed Hermione excitedly, “Was it a helmet, a spear?”

Severus looked at her and shook his head, “When do you stop Granger; it’s a shield, a knights cavalry shield.”

“If we can’t touch it, Severus, how can we retrieve it?” asked Minerva.

Severus looked at Jenny, his unspoken question answered in her smile, “How are we getting there?” she asked.

“We need to make a copy first. You brought the photos?” Severus asked.

Jenny nodded and put her hand in her pocked. “Can you fix this?” she asked, pulling out a small canvas bag.

“Oh, perhaps, Minerva...” he said.

McGonagall took the bag from Jenny’s hand and placed it on the table. Passing her wand over it, she returned the bag to its normal size.

“Thanks,” said Jenny as she opened it and fished out an envelope containing the photographs Severus had asked her to bring.

“Can you configure something to duplicate it, Minerva? If you can’t perhaps I can ask Lucius...” Severus watched Minerva’s face redden.

“Watch your mouth, boy, or you’ll find yourself spending time as an Aspidistra,” she told him, archly. “When do you need it?”

“Tomorrow; I thought perhaps we could portkey.” He waited for her assent to his plan. McGonagall was in charge now. “I’d prefer early in the morning.”

“You’ll take Tonks and Shacklebolt with you,” she told him. “Remus, create the portkey. Get the location from the Wizards’ atlas.” She turned to Jenny, “You have no stake in this Miss Doulton, and I won’t ask you to go.”

“You’re quite mistaken, Professor; I have everything I hold dear at stake here. I will go and I will help in every way I can. I can’t leave knowing I could have done something to help,” Jenny told the older woman who recognized the conviction in her tone.

Xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

Jenny and Severus were given a room together at her insistence. The door had been locked and warded to keep him in; she didn’t care.

They lay without undressing upon the old four poster bed; only dozing lightly with the expectation of the coming morning. While it was still dark, they heard someone first knock then enter the room. Severus had already risen and rinsed his face using water from the ewer sitting on the dry sink.

“Good Morning,” said Molly, entering with a breakfast tray with mugs of coffee and buttered muffins. “Professor McGonagall is explaining everything down in the kitchen to the others. Kingsley will be along presently.”

After their breakfast and time in the bathroom, Jenny and Severus met the others in the library.

“Here you go, Jenny.” Minerva handed a perfectly duplicated shield to Jenny. “Be careful.”

Kingsley and Tonks accompanied Severus and Jenny on the journey. It was still dark when they appeared in the parking area beside the old church. Severus led them to the doors which were locked. He still had no wand and stood aside to let Tonks open the door. The interior was dark save for the exit signs and vigil lights in the sanctuary and crypt. The Aurors lit their wands and heard the sounds of mice skittering away to their holes.

When they came to the side chapel with the crypt, Kingsley reached out a finger and got a shock much as Severus had. “Interesting and practical,” he observed.

With a deep breath, Jenny entered to where the knight’s tomb lay in the flickering light. Reaching out, she touched the shield carefully. She didn’t know why she was worried, she’d done this before. When nothing happened, she lifted the shield from its niche and replaced it with the duplicate. Holding it to her chest, Jenny quickly left the crypt area and returned to the others.

“Can we get out of here? I feel like a bloody grave robber. This place gives me the willie’s,” she told them.

They made their way back outside and using the portkey once more, returned to London. Jenny was still staggering from the portkey travel as she put the Horcrux with the others for save keeping.

“What now?” asked Remus of Severus.

“We wait until the summons. You continue your search for an answer to destroy them. Talk to Lucius or Krum, they may have some idea’s.” said Snape. “Me, I’m going to get some sleep.”

“Severus, what about the memory’s?” asked McGonagall.

“They’re not mine. I think he intends to share them with you. Ask for yourself. I don’t need any reminders.” He turned and indicated to Tonks he wanted to go to his assigned room.

Jenny walked over to him, “Want some company? I’m exhausted.”

He looked at Tonks who shrugged. “If you want, Jenny; Just a couple of hours.” They left together followed by the young Auror.

Lupin looked at Minerva and asked, “What do you make of that?”

“I would say our dour old Snape is happily smitten with that lady.” She frowned suddenly, “It’s a pity they’d not found each other before now.”

“Sybill would say it was fate.” He smiled at the thought.

“Sybill talks a lot of shite,” announced McGonagall, being uncommonly profane. “I’ll take the small pensieve and the memories to my room.” She patted his hand and left.

Lupin became thoughtful for a moment, and then returned to his research with Hermione.