Locus Liberi *Author's note: This is a short fic I wrote during school.
I'm on my High School's Literary Magazine staff and decided that Hogwarts school
needed to have one as well! Since I'm a blatant lover of the MWP&P generation,
I came up with a way to stick them in there (as usual). This is one of my really
old Harry Potter fics--I literally had to dig it out from the depths of the
HJP Forum--so my style is a little…raw and underdeveloped. Thank you to Scribbie,
Katirose, and the Harry James Potter (Well, Harry Potter Connection when
this was written) Forum for your encouragement and constructive criticism,
especially Persephone, Trisha, Gengi, and Callie, and, as always, to my Beta
(Place of the Book)
"Literary Magazine?" Ron asked incredulously, gazing at the
sheaf of parchment on his desk. Professor McGonagall paced before the class,
waiting for everyone to finish reading, her jaw set more firmly than usual,
every strand of black hair in perfect placement, pulled so tightly into a bun
that her eyes seemed rather inclined towards her ears. She seemed to like the
idea less than Ron.
"Oooh," said Hermione. "A literary magazine! All sorts of
things could go in there!" She raised her hand and looked pointedly at Professor
Harry saw Ron roll his eyes and lean close to Hermione's
ear. "Sorry, Hermione; I don't think they allow forty-page essays on the ten
uses of dragon's blood and their effects on the wizarding economy," he whispered.
Harry smirked; Hermione scowled and elbowed Ron in the ribs.
"Yes, Granger?" Professor McGonagall inquired.
Hermione dropped her hand and sat up straighter. "Yes,
I was wondering if you have copies of a past literary magazine on file in the
"Certainly, Granger," Professor McGonagall responded, her
chin slightly in the air as if her tightly bound bun was a weight on the back
of her head. "In fact, I have several copies
of past magazines here." She lifted a stack of black-bound books from her desk,
each bearing the Hogwarts coat of arms bisected diagonally by a silver quill.
Above the coat of arms, printed in golden letters was "Locus Liberi," and beneath
the seal, a date.
With a heavy clunk, Professor McGonagall dropped the books
onto the nearest student's desk. "Pass these around, and peruse them to get
an idea of the kind of things we're looking for."
A book made its way back to Harry, Ron, and Hermione. "I
think the magazine is only published every five years," Hermione prattled to
Harry and Ron. "It's too bad it only runs once in our time here. Some students
are lucky enough to get it twice."
"Lucky?" Snorted Ron.
Harry wondered if he should interrupt before another fight started. "I don't
think that...oh, look--Quidditch literature! Assorted Haikus by this year's
teams." Ron shrugged. "Let's have a look, shall we?"
Harry gazed at the pages as Ron flipped through; moving photographs,
poetry that blossomed in the shape of a flower and wilted as each new line was
added, and even stories that read themselves.
"Ah, here we are," stated Ron, and the three of them looked
Soaring through the air
Vision suddenly turns red
A Bludger flies on. ~Angela Weasley, Hufflepuff
Red and black and blue
I don't mean our robes. ~Presea Thomps, Ravenclaw Seeker
And now the game is over
Wait, that's not a Snitch ... ~Remus Lupin, Gryffindor Seeker
Pretty girl in stands
I sail into the goalpost
I meant to do that. ~James Potter, Gryffindor Chaser
we all got new shooting stars
Pity we can't fly. ~Anonymous
Fly! Fly like the wind!
That Seeker can really go!
His tail's on fire. ~Aramus Tilk, Slytherin chaser
A roar from the crowd?
I feel electrocuted
wait, it was thunder. ~Demetrius Green, Hufflepuff chaser
Beauty of the wind
The World is frozen in ice
We fly like snow-men. ~James Potter, Gryffindor Chaser
Even though I lost
They need not hang me from here
I'm afraid of heights. ~Kevellan Korwin, Slytherin seeker
And now a reprieve for some inspirational poetry by three
of our favorite Gryffindors.
Sirius Black, Referee
All good chasers go to heaven
Beaters always get the fun
All the keepers get in free
Too bad seekers never play.
Remus Lupin, Seeker
Chasers don't always fly true
Beaters barely stay alive
keeps and seekers cannot flee
Too bad no one likes the ref.
James Potter, Chaser
Seekers always hover, refs are never nice
That poem isn't good enough for you to write it twice!
Death of a Seeker
Floating a dot
Falling a dot
The Ref's Demise
Was a mess
Due to the violence portrayed in the remaining poetry,
we cannot condone the publishing of seek and referee.
~Agatha Arlian, Hufflepuff.
Harry was doubled over laughing, but also feeling slightly
nauseous. He, Ron and Hermione had somehow managed to get the book that was
written in the year his father, Sirius, and Professor Lupin had attended Hogwarts.
The book was precious, a relic from his father's day. It was something that
his father had helped to create, and Harry wanted to read every word over a
After class Harry told Hermione and Ron to go on ahead, he'd
meet them in the Great Hall for lunch. As soon as the last student had cleared
the room, Harry walked tentatively up to Professor McGonagall's desk, the book
clutched gently beneath his arm. "Yes, Potter?" She said, regarding him imperiously
through her square glasses.
Harry cleared his throat, "I was just wondering if...er,
if there is an extra copy of this magazine that I could have. You see I...I
found something in there of my dad's--that he had written--and I sort of wanted
to..." He trailed off at the doubtful look on McGonagall's face.
"I'm sorry, Potter, there are no other copies, " She
said, shaking her head, eyebrows drawing together sadly.
Harry's hopes plummeted. "Oh," he said. "Alright then. Thanks
anyway, Professor. " With that, he slid the book back onto the stack of other
magazines now piled on Professor McGonagall's desk.
Harry tried to be cheerful during dinner, but he found it
difficult to continue to smile. "It isn't like you can't go read it in the library,"
Hermione said sympathetically. "I'm sure they keep them on file somewhere."
Harry forced a smile. Hermione was right, he could visit it in the library,
but it wasn't the same. The book wasn't his. He wouldn't be able to take it
with him when he graduated in two years. He sighed and took a large gulp of
pumpkin juice. An idea struck him and he turned to Hermione, “Isn’t there some
way to make a magical copy?” Hermione shrugged, “Of course there is, but not
from anything in the school. There are spells on all the books to ensure that
students can’t just copy things from books. They don’t want them to plagiarize
That evening Harry left Hermione and Ron in the common room
doing their homework. He had an insatiable urge to open his trunk and dig out
the album of photos of his mother and father. He had just tossed his cloak onto
his bed when he saw something glint near his pillow. Curiously he stood and
bent over. There was a sheaf of parchment folded over, his name written on it
in green ink. Beneath it was the black cover of a literary magazine, its emblazoned
silver quill glittering in the dim light. With shaking hands, Harry lifted the
This is a copy of the magazine about which
you addressed me today after class. I could not come across an extra copy, and
there has to be one on file for future reference at
the library. This was my personal copy, and I expect you to treat it with the
same respect that I have for so many years. I am giving this to you. Each year
of the magazine I asked the students who participated to sign it. I am sure
you shall find your father's signature, as well as your mother's and several
others you may recognize.
Prof. M. McGonagal
Harry stood, awestruck for a moment before folding the letter
and tucking it under the corner of his pillow. He hesitated only a moment and
lifted the magazine into his arms and flipped the front cover. He scanned the
many signatures and notes written to the teacher, searching for a familiar name.
Professor McGonagal, Been a great year! Sorry about that
bludger thing, and I hope you enjoy all of the wonderful "literature." Remember:
When in doubt, blame Sirius.
My lovely Professor McGonagal,
I cannot fully recount how beautiful you looked today in your red robes and
ivy hat! The words are too beautiful for my uncouth mind to fathom. They stall
in my quill at the very thought of your resplendent…okay, I figured that wouldn't
get me out of trouble, but it was worth a shot, right? See you next year!
Another year is almost over, and it feels like I've got double duty signing
both the yearbooks and these dratted magazines! Well, I guess the magazines
are okay, if you like amateur poetry like Sirius'. Hah, just kidding!
Harry smiled and flipped to the table of contents again,
reading through all of the submission titles and their authors. There were many
names unfamiliar, and the precious few that he recognized. Besides the Quidditch
literature, his father had written a short story, Sirius had written a series
of Odes, and Lupin a poem. But towards the end of the book he spotted another
name...one that he was sure belonged to his mother--Lily Evans.
My mother's signature, Harry thought, flipping back to the
autograph page and finding the corresponding name, gingerly brushing his fingers
along the deep purple writing. Does that mean she’s written something in here?
Harry hesitated, still regarding the purple writing of his mother. What if it
isn't her, he thought. I don't even know her maiden name, and there may have
been other Lilys. He sighed and briefly wondered why his hands were shaking.
Flipping open the cover of the black-bound book, Harry found
the table of contents he and his friends had been looking at earlier that day.
Only this one was marked in a familiar green handwriting. Professor McGonagal
had starred her favorite excerpts. He perused the list of authors for his mother's
To his dismay, Harry discovered that there had been two Lilys
at Hogwarts in the year the magazine was published, and both had submitted to
the magazine. Lily Lovecrest and Lily Evans. Harry strained to remember his
mother’s maiden name…it would have been the same as Aunt Petunia’s, but then
he’d never really paid aunt Petunia. Harry didn't want to make a guess at which
one was his mother--he would have felt awful if he'd found he was wrong years
later. Harry decided to read both entries, and flipped to the nearest one, by
It was a poem, written in blue, and shimmering slightly,
like the ocean.
It whispers through the window
Past the curtain and the shade
Hanging in the graying air
And blanketing the lake
It's the coolness in the morning
The chill against your skin
It brings you home at nighttime
Makes you glad that you're within
It embraces all that's standing
The mother of the dew
In shades of gray and white and silver
The world is born anew
Harry felt nothing as he read the poem. He had expected a
glimmer of recognition, something that told him that this was his mother. However,
nothing came, and Harry would have to rely on his instinct if he wanted to find
out who his mother was. He supposed that if he couldn't figure out which Lily
was the girl who would become Lily Potter on his own, then he would have to
ask Professor McGonagal. Harry shook his head, hoping fiercely that he wouldn't
have to do that--he didn't want to admit to anyone his lack of knowledge about
his own family members.
As he turned to the next entry, by Lily Evans, he prayed
silently for something to help him.
The next entry was a free-verse poem, and quite a long one.
It was written quite normally, with nothing flashy, but professor McGonagal
had written something that Harry couldn't read at the top corner of the
page. Below that was another note, written in slightly messy, but familiar,
handwriting. He had seen that handwriting before, on the Marauders' Map, and
in the front cover of that same book.
Lil, this is very nice! I love the abstractness, but then that isn't really
a surprise is it. Whoops, I just realized that this isn't your magazine...sorry,
Professor McGonagal! ~James Potter
Harry had to laugh--it had been an accident on his father's
part, but it had turned out to be a good mistake. Now, Harry had another message
from his father...and the answer to his question. He was sure now--Lily Evans
had to be his mother. Steadying his still slightly shaking hands, Harry moved
to sit on his bed and draped himself across it to read his mother's poem.
Who of Me
By Lily Evans
Who of me is me
And who of me is not
Is there any indication
To those looking on with enrapt eyes
Days creep slowly by
But some flash on ahead
The come back to haunt me
And I wonder if I was ever there
If that person who says things
I wish I'd never said
Is really me
Or someone else
Could it be that I was dreaming
That the day I don't remember
Whether I was myself or not
Was only imagined
By someone who is not me
By someone who shares my thoughts
That phantom in my memories
Is someone else
And I'll never know
Whether I am me right now
Because we are so alike
And so different
And we share each other
That the bind is indiscernible
I still can't tell
Who of me is me
And who of me is not
Can anyone outside see
When I am me and when I am her
Or is there a phantom in them too
Every person is themselves
And also someone else
But no one can tell
And no one realizes
Because every person changes
The same time
And everyone is asking
Who of me is me
And who of me is not?
Harry didn't realize that he had been holding his breath
until a hiccup forced him to expel it. His breath shuddered as it left his lungs,
and only by the tightness on his face and the slight dampness of his bedspread
beneath his hands, did he realize that he was crying. They weren't tears of
pain or tears of sadness; but an unnamed, irrepressible emotion so intense that
it forced a physical release. He closed the book, unable to continue for the
tears that blurred his vision.
He slipped off the bed and trudged to the chest at the end
of his bed, lifting the lid and placing the precious item beneath his invisibility
cloak, right on top of the photo album of his parents.
All he could do after that was crawl into bed, too choked
with emotion to think or do anything but sleep…
Originally, this story was longer, but that was mostly
because the HJP Forum kept on bugging me for more! ;) I'm just kidding, I love
you guys! Anyway, I decided that no more was really needed, and I like the ending
where it is. More Harry than anyone else; I don't write enough about him. You
may notice that some of the Haiku in this version are slightly different from
the later versions, also published on Sugar Quill. Oh, and Demetrius Green is
the creation of Persephone (drummer girl), and a smashing character he is! ~Scribe