As Holly hurried to catch up with the rest of the group she caught the end of Neville’s sentence, “-you really break into Gringotts? And steal a dragon?”
“Yeah it’s true,” Ron said.
Neville let out a great burst of laughter, “Terry Boot got beat up by the Carrows for shouting about it in the Great Hall! That’s wicked!”
“Neville, what happened to your face? And why are you limping?” Hermione asked carefully.
“Ahh don’t worry about it, Seamus is worse.” Neville said, waving it aside. As he walked past one of the lanterns that lit the passageway Holly could see that Neville’s face was full of cuts and bruises.
“And Ginny? How is she?” Holly asked cautiously. She saw Harry’s shoulders tense up and could tell Ron was doing the same. No one wanted to ask but everyone wanted to know.
“She’s fine, she’s a tough one Ginny is.” Neville replied.
The group came to the end of the tunnel. While Neville was unlocking the door, muttering a few spells and waving his wand, Holly whispered to Harry quickly explaining where she had been.
“Albania?!” Harry exclaimed, causing Hermione and Ron to turn around and listen in on the story.
“Yes Albania, with Fred and George, and Gryphon of course.” Holly replied.
“My brothers? Are they ok? Where are they now?” Ron exclaimed
“They’re at home and fine.” Holly replied hastily, “But I was trying to find the lost Diadem of Ravenclaw, I had a hunch it was the last One.” She said quietly so Neville couldn’t hear them. She told the trio how she met Helena Ravenclaw and what she had told Holly about the diadem.
“And then she finished with saying ‘It’s in the place where things are hidden’ I have no idea where that is in Hogwarts but if we can find her again we could probably ask; Helena Ravenclaw is The Grey Lady, ghost of Ravenclaw Tower!” Holly finished.
“No need to ask her, I think we know where it may be.” Harry said.
“Oi! We have visitors!” Neville’s voice brought the conversation to a halt. He had opened the door and it revealed an enormous room full of people. As Harry walked through the door a thunderous applause could be heard. Holly walked cautiously out the door to see the room Neville was describing. The Room of Requirement had outdone itself this time. Banners of the Houses, hammocks upon hammocks for sleeping, bathrooms, complete with a roaring fireplace. Books lined the walls and there was wireless radio in the corner. Holly laughed as she saw the trio became swallowed up by the crowd of students. She recognized most of them; many were the old members of Dumbledore’s Army a group Harry had founded in his fifth year.
“Holly!” Many of the students had recognized her and pulled her into the crowd as well.
“Blimey Holly, big enough dog for ya?” Seamus asked her. Holly laughed and patted Gryphon on the head. Some of the girls from the Ravenclaw Quidditch team ran over to her and hugged her. As they cooed over Gryphon, Holly walked around the room to meet everyone else.
“Holly!” Lavender and Pavarti rushed over to Holly. Although she hadn’t been very close with the girls, she was still thrilled to see them and gave them each a massive hug.
“Well you look different” Pavarti told Holly. She led Holly to the bathroom so she could see herself. Thinking back, Holly couldn’t remember the last time she saw her reflection. She had been on the move for so long and even at Shell Cottage she hadn’t had time to inspect herself. Holly looked into the mirror and was shocked at the face looking back at her. Her blonde hair had grown much longer, Holly hadn’t noticed because she mainly kept it out of her face by a ponytail. Her cheek bones were more prominent and her face had been naturally tanned slightly by the sun.
“Wow” Holly said, touching her face to make sure it was actually her, “I look so-“
“Sexy?” Lavender said
“Hot?” Pavarti added
“Mature” Holly said laughing. Holly bent over the sink so wash the dirt off her face that she had acquired in Albania. When she was done, Pavarti and Lavender twisted her hair into a messy French braid, draping it on one of her shoulders.
“Might as well look good when you’re going into battle right?” Lavender said with a nervous laugh.
“It’s lovely, thank you” Holly replied. The braid actually functioned better than her pony tail because it kept the loose strands away from her face. Holly and the girls walked back out to rejoin the group.
“Harry” Holly heard a soft voice say. Holly turned around to see Ginny walk up to Harry cautiously. She could see that Ginny was fighting to urge to go embrace him. Holly stood behind Harry, next to Seamus and Ron and winked at Ginny. Ginny took that as the go ahead and ran to Harry, wrapping her arms tightly around him.
“After months of not seeing her, first thing she says is ‘Harry’. I’m her brother!” Holly heard Ron say beside her.
“Ahh she’s got six of you, there’s only one Harry Potter.” Seamus replied with a laugh. Holly burst out laughing beside them; the statement was very true. When Ginny and Harry broke apart, she finally spoke.
“He knows.” She said seriously to the group
“He knows what Ginny?” Hermione asked
“Snape knows Harry was spotted in Hogsmeade. He’s calling all of the students to assemble in the Great Hall.”
A silence fell over the room. Holly turned to Harry and saw that he was working on a plan hastily in his head.
“Alright, are there any extra Gryffindor robes in here?” Harry asked. Lavender hurried over to a wardrobe and opened it. House robes of Gryffindor, Ravenclaw and Hufflepuff all hung side by side in the wardrobe. Lavender passed a set of Gryffindor robes to Harry.
“Hey Lav, better pass me some Ravenclaw robes as well” Holly called out to Lavender. Harry looked at Holly quizzically.
“Can’t let you have all the fun” Holly said winking at Harry with a sly smile. He nodded and told the rest of the plan to everyone else.
Snape stood at the front of the Great Hall, where the staff table and the Headmaster’s chair used to sit. The Hall was bear; the long House tables had vanished, and the magical ceiling showing the sky was gone. Holly was in awe over how massive the Hall seemed without its regular furniture but kept her eyes pointed straight ahead of her. The remaining students were standing in rows, each separated in their houses.
Snape addressed the school, “It has come to my attention that Harry Potter had been sighted earlier this evening in Hogsmeade” The Great Hall suddenly filled with urgent whispers.
“Silence.” Snape raised his wand. The Hall became as quiet as a funeral instantly. “If any of the staff or students attempt to help Mr. Potter or if they know the whereabouts of Mr. Potter and fail to step forward…punishments will be given.” Snape clasped his hands together. “Now, does anyone like to come forward?” The Hall continued to be silent. Holly knew what was about to happen but refrained on looking at the Gryffindors in case she gave them away. She heard a gasp from the students in the Great Hall and knew it was her cue to look.
“It seems that despite your extensive defensive measures…you have a bit of a security breach Headmaster.” Harry said.
Holly turned around. Harry had stepped from the Gryffindor group and stood in the middle of the Hall. The remaining students fled to the outer walls as the doors to the Great Hall opened and a small army walked in. The Order of the Phoenix members including Kingsley, Lupin, Tonks, Mr. and Mrs. Weasley, Bill, Fleur, Fred, George, Hermione, Ron and Ginny stood in the doorway. The remaining DA members removed themselves from their respective Houses and stood to stand with them. Gryphon stood proudly between the Weasley twins.
Harry watched as his army walked through the doors then turned back to Snape with a smile playing on his lips, “I’m afraid it’s quite extensive.” Holly watched Harry’s face; his smile changed to pure rage when he looked at Snape again. As Harry opened his mouth, Holly could tell that he had a lot to get off is chest.
“How dare you stand where he stood. Tell them how you looked him in the eye, a man who trusted you, and killed him!” Harry accused Snape.
Holly was watching Snape’s face during Harry’s outburst and saw his wand twitch before anyone else did. She quickly stunned the Carrow siblings who had started to creep out of the corners of the room towards Harry and cast a protective shield in front of him. The students gasped as the bodies of the Carrows hid the floor with a satisfying THUD.
“Well that was fun” Holly said as she left the safety of the Ravenclaws. She smiled at Snape and nodded her head at him as she walked to stand beside Harry in the middle of the room. “Can we have another go?” she said as she twisted her wand through her fingers like a baton twirler. Holly felt especially cheeky after she saw the look of shock on Snape’s face. Despite the smile on Holly’s face, she was internally bracing herself for Snape’s next attack. The attack never came.
“You shall spill no more blood!” Professor McGonagall roared as she ran in front of the twins and readied herself for Snape’s attack. The Great Hall watched in awe as McGonagall and Snape dueled. It wasn’t a normal wizarding duel however, it consisted of McGonagall sending spell after spell at Snape and he just deflecting them, not sending any back. It seemed like McGonagall was winning when suddenly Snape’s figure was completely covered with his black cloak. He changed into a black light/cloak figure and soared out of the Great Hall by blasting through a window.
“COWARD!” Professor McGonagall cried after him. She turned to the twins, “Potters, why on Earth are you here?” Their answer was cut short by a shrieking cry from one of the students. Holly turned to the noise and saw a small second-year Hufflepuff holding her ears in the corner of the room, crying. Another scream was heard from the Gryffindors; Lavender was holding her ears as well with a look of terror on her face. Suddenly the entire room was filled with a dark voice.
“I know you are preparing to fight. This is folly. Give me Harry Potter. Give me Harry Potter and I will spare your lives. I will leave Hogwarts untouched. You have one hour” The voice of Voldemort said.
“What are you waiting for? Someone grab him!”
Holly spun around at the sound of Pansy Parkinson’s voice. Pansy was pointing a finger at Harry, expecting everyone to grab him and hand him over. Holly heard Ginny run over to Harry and stand between him and Pansy. She turned and saw that Hermione, Ron and the rest of the DA members form a circle around Harry to protect him. Holly stood in front of the circle and faced Pansy with her wand drawn. When Pansy saw Holly she laughed.
“Give the Dark Lord Harry’s pathetic sister as well! He can have som-“
“Oh shut up!” Holly said as she silenced Pansy with her wand. Pansy’s mouth opened in shock as she tried to scream at Holly, her hands waving widly.
“You never could get the non-verbal spell right, could you hun?” Holly asked patronizingly. Holly heard a slight applause from behind her and turned to see the Gryffindor, Ravenclaw and Hufflepuff girls clapping. Holly smiled and did a small curtsy.
Professor clapped her hands together for attention, “Prefects leads your students to the seventh floor. You will exit the castle and be transported home. Anyone of age can stay and fight. We will defend our school with all that we have!”