Without You

By Kate Dixon aka Katie Bell (katie_bell_chaser@yahoo.com)

Rating: G

Summary: A different twist on that fateful Halloween night which started all the madness in Harry Potter's night. In this odd but intruging tale, Lily Potter survives and everyone else does not, and Voldemort is still around. It is now up to Lily to change the future and Dumbledore cannot help her.

Disclaimer: This story is based on characters and situations created and owned by J. K. Rowling. No money is being made and no copyright or trademark infringement is intended. It's just fan fiction!

Author's Note: Obviously, this is a bit unusual. But an idea came to me, a 'what if'. What if Lily had survived the attack, I thought. And this is the result. I think it's pretty sad and pathetic. Well, it's got plenty of company, lots of equally sad stuff written . Of course, I'm sure nothing like this actually happened. And if it's a bit confusing, well, sorry about that. - Kate, November 1999

~

< >The screams filled the air. "No! Not Harry! Please, not Harry! Take me, take me instead! Please, have mercy, not Harry!"

< >A thousand times had those moments played themselves out in the dreams, the nightmares, of the one sleeping restlessly here. Each time, waking had brought the same bitter questions 'Why? Why did it have to happen this way? Why must I live my life empty and alone, without the two people who meant the most to me?"

< >After the questions, inevitably, came the hatred, implacable and insatiable, hatred of Voldemort, who had murdered them. Of Pettigrew, the traitor. And always, a bit of self-loathing, wondering, 'Was it my fault? If not for me, would it have happened differently?"

< >Moonlight fell on a wizard photograph. A happy family portrait; husband, wife, son. Happiness shattered so many years ago.

< >The days were bad, but the nights were worse. There, there was no escape, not even the fooling of self that comes when one is so busy that any thought is impossible, other than concentrating on the moment. At night, the terrors, sorrows, and hatred hounds and hounds, and refuge cannot be found, even in dreams. For indeed, dreams were the worst. Always they started happily enough; but that dream happiness, like the life it reflected, was shattered, ending in that scream, that plead for mercy that had gone unanswered.

< >Lily Potter awoke from her dream.

< >It was the worst on the actual anniversary of the day; then she could not help but remember. Oh, how much she had lost that night. Her beloved husband, James, dead in a futile attempt to stop Voldemort. Her precious son, Harry. She would have died to save him, wished a thousand times that she had died instead of what had happened. Even now she could envision it.

< > "Stand aside, stand aside, you foolish girl!"

< > "No, please, I beg of you!"

< > "Stand aside!" He flung her against the wall. She sank down, unconscious. Perhaps he thought he had killed her, for she awoke in a hospital. There was wise old Professor Dumbledore. He didn't look his cheery self at all. Memory flooded back and she started up.

< > "Please, Lily, lie still."

< > "James! Harry! Are they - did they-" Dumbledore's bowed head told her all she needed to know. She sobbed, long and deep.

< >That wasn't all, of course. Sirius and Remus, enraged at Pettigrew's treachery, had tried to slay him in an act of revenge. But he was too close to Voldemort, and they were killed in the attempt.

< >And Voldemort. Overnight, he seemed to have gotten far worse. It was as though the act of killing James and Harry had freed him from any last vestiges of human conscience. Nothing seemed to be able to stop him.

< >Then he stopped himself. For ten years, he was content with the power he held. Some people might have allowed him to keep that, hoping for him to simply die, but not Albus Dumbledore. He searched incessantly for a way to destroy Voldemort. And with him worked Lily. For she felt that her life had ended the night her husband and son had died, and she remained for but one purpose; revenge. James, Harry, Remus and Sirius had been buried on the same day, as seemed fitting, and on their graves Lily had sworn to do anything she could to destroy Voldemort.

< >Lily thought again of the only thing that kept her going, the promise she had made to herself. She had promised herself that on the day that Voldemort perished, she would join her husband in death. It became her greatest desire, next to killing Voldemort. Life was just not worth living without them. She looked at the photograph of her wedding day. "Without you…." She whispered.

< >When she got to the rooms where she and Dumbledore worked, she gasped. Albus lay stretched out on the floor, a cup nearby him. She hurried over. He wasn't dead, but he was very weak. He opened his eyes.

< > "I have done it," he whispered.

< > "You've found a way to destroy Voldemort?" Oh, the hope that that sent through her was painful in its intensity.

< > "I thought I could do it…But I cannot. Read my notes, and you will see." Lily hurried over to the book.

< > "A way to change past events?" She exclaimed.

< > "Yes. It's very difficult, though. Listen to me. Harry must be saved. He's the key to everything." Lily's heart was racing. If what she saw was right, she could go back, go and warn herself about Pettigrew, go and-

< > "Listen!" Dumbledore said, fiercely. "The only way that this can be made right is if you do exactly as I tell you to! I've performed the calculations hundreds of times, looking for another answer, but there is none. There is no way James can be saved. Not if Voldemort is to be stopped." A spasm of pain crossed his face.

< > "And there's something else. You -you…" She leaned closer, to catch his words. Then she pulled back. He had died, she realized. Died without telling her what else needed to be done. She stood. She'd have to do the best she could.

< >According to these notes, she wouldn't really go back in time. She'd simply project her consciousness back into that of the her which was already there. She'd have no control, be able only to suggest ideas. It would seem to the her of that day that the ideas were from her own subconscious - which in fact they were. Lily crossed the room to the cauldron that sat on the hearth. She drew a cup of it, and raised it in a toast.

< > "To the future, or the past. May it be brighter than it is now." She drank the potion in one gulp.

< >Lily Potter waited anxiously for the end of the charm. She felt very nervous. Only natural, since her life would be dependant on it. Pettigrew's the traitor, came a sudden thought. She shook her head. She might not trust Peter as much as James did, and certainly not as much as she trusted Sirius, but the traitor? Certainly not. She wondered, then, why Sirius insisted on using Peter for the Secret-Keeper. If Voldemort guessed…. Pettigrew is the traitor, came the thought again. She forced it down.

< >When a pounding on the door disturbed the quiet of the evening, Lily was amazed. No one in the small village of Godric's Hollow would think of such rudeness.

< >The next few minutes were madness. Lily found herself crouched against the door of her son's room. Her mind was reeling. Pettigrew had betrayed them, Voldemort had found them, and now James was dead. She could see Voldemort coming toward her.

< > "Stand aside, stand aside, you silly girl!" She had an odd feeling of déjà vu at that moment.

< > "No, please, not Harry!"

< > "Stand aside!" Something painful hit her. She screamed, and as she did so, something came to her. A thought, a scrap of an idea. Counter his curse with yourself. And she knew what to do.

< >She stood firm, refusing to let the dark lord past. He threw something at her, but she ducked, and he missed. He was furious now. Voldemort didn't like people standing in his way. This time, he didn't miss. Lily sank to the floor.

< >Everything seemed to have gone oddly quiet. She felt calm, peaceful. She knew that she was dying, but in the last moment of her life, she saw what might have been.

< >She saw the future that would now not occur. Some other part of her, the part from the future, sighed inwardly, content. She had fulfilled her promise. And the other Lily was content too. For she knew now that her son would live. And what mother could ask more than that?


- fin -


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