Falsely Estranged (Lily Evans and Petunia Dursley)
The world is known for discrimination. Though it may be in the form of race, color or ethnicity, discrimination prevails. And in my case it exists in the form of abilities. The ability to be a witch is what discriminated my sister from me.
Lily had always been the smart one and not only that, she was also the prettier of us two with her bright red hair and vivid green eyes. But our appearances had never come in between us. It was all going well until she turned eleven and received the letter of acceptance to Hogwarts. That, precisely, was when the first barrier began to rise between us.
I don’t blame her, my dear sister, for any of it. She was always so nice to me. But I blame the way the world has of looking down upon those who are not worthy enough. Those, like me, who are inferior to others in some aspects.
Imagine being the elder one, leading your younger sibling everywhere, protecting her and teaching her what you think best. Imagine being in charge of a little girl who you have to look after. And then one day, all of a sudden, that little sibling is torn away from you and you’re told that you can’t look after her anymore.
Imagine the shock when you’re told that she has to go away because she is special. And you are not.
It hurts. To be really honest, it feels like a piece of your heart is cut and thrown afar forever. And that hollow space where that piece was intact aches every second to be complete again.
I was fifteen when she first left us to go to a new world. The magic world… Oh how she would talk about it all night waking me up as well from her excitement. Lily was very imaginative and her stories seemed like fairy tales. But I guess that she was too excited to go there that she didn’t even mind leaving me behind. And so she went in her magic dream world while I was left in this reality all alone with my little companion nowhere near me.
Sometimes, I do wonder why she was different. Why she had magic in her veins and I didn’t? But deep down I had always known the answer. She was the bright one with thoughts full of rainbows and fairies while I was the dull practical sister always finding the logic in things not leaving any room for imagination in my mind.
Over the years, we kept drifting apart even though both of us were unwilling for that to happen. Every single year I faded more and more into the background. There was only one person everyone cared about: Lily.
Lily became the perfect daughter with a special talent that made her even more attractive to others while I became Snotty Old Tuney working an equally boring job at Grunnings.
She thought that I wanted to shut her out from my life and so gradually she tried to stay away from me. She did that in good will, wanting me to be happy. But how was she to know that the barriers set up in our childhood had grown so deep that it prevented me from ever expressing the truth to her.
In a way, she was right. But it wasn’t Lily who I wanted to shut out from my life. I just wanted to shut all our differences out and never have to look at her to realize that we were not the same.
I wanted the little Lily back who would follow me everywhere, holding my hand tightly, and who would tug at the hem of my dress whenever I refused to play with her.
They say time is a great healer, but with us it only made things worse. At times I would feel too inferior as compared to her that it made me angry and also made me lose my calm. All everyone ever saw was Lily while I was not even spared a second glance.
It was infuriating. It made me instinctively act against her. Unknowingly, I would be casting her away from me yet I couldn’t help it. It was so hard to keep all the anger bottled up inside. And all these regular bursts of anger made people think that I hated Lily.
I didn’t hate her though, I could never do that. I was just too crude to let her see through the facade.
I met Vernon at work and both of us immediately took a fancy to each other. It felt so refreshing to find someone other than me who was also completely ordinary. Why he liked me though, I had no idea. But it felt great to know that there was someone who approved of me. We got married because logically he was fitting enough to be a husband who had a well established job and could provide me with a home and a family of my own.
I chose logic. Lily chose love.
And thus she was far happier with that James Potter than I ever could be with Vernon. But I was content, my needs were all fulfilled and after a real long time I was again in charge and held in esteem by my new family. And so far contentment has been the only thing closest to happiness in my dictionary.
After both of us got married, visits from one another became almost nonexistent. And the only time we met was when our mother passed away. Her funeral was the only event when me and Lily stood side by side in years.
It was the first time in years that we shared the same childhood room as there was no other option left and the house was flooding with mourners. That night was the first when I myself started a conversation with her. We were both grieved equally, our sorrow was not different. And she too needed a shoulder to cry upon.
It was then Lily told me that her magic world wasn’t so happy and cheery as before either. Just like the tempest that had struck us in the form of Mom’s death, the wizarding world was also wrapped in grief and chaos. She told me of a dreadful war that had broken out and about the threat it held to those not of pure magical descent.
I clearly remember our conversation that night. How I persuaded her to leave all that freak world behind her and come back to where she truly belonged. I feared for her life, she thought I was just being jealous.
The main problem with us always had been the estrangement. And the fact that I lacked the ability to correctly express myself.
“Open your eyes and look at me, Lily,” I still remember my words, “what has your magic world ever given you? Now you are being endangered for a fight that would never have been yours in the first place had you not gone to Hogwarts. Your magic has blinded you and you are intentionally jumping off a cliff to your death.”
But it was of no use. She was resolute. She didn’t want to back off. If her child was going to be the savior and she had to die for her child’s life, she would do so. If her being killed off in a war meant the safety of other wizarding folk, she would do so.
And that was when I despised the magic even more. At first it had taken my little sister away from me and now it was going to end her forever.
All due to one war and one child.
All due to the insane atrocities of wizards.
I hated every single thing associated to magic and I will keep on hating it till the day I die.
The last I heard from her after that night was on July 31st when her son was born. Her son who was going to save the Wizarding World at the cost of my little sister’s life.
She wrote me a letter which I have still kept with me hidden in a box at the top of my cupboard. I didn’t reply to her that time but I was aware that this would have been the last letter she would send me.
It was the last.
The last until November 2nd when I opened my door to fetch out the mail from the mail box and found a tiny baby wrapped up in blankets with a letter pinned on top at my doorstep.
I knew what it meant. My sister had gone forever. And I was left with what caused her death. This little child who was chosen to be the savior. I had to take him in of course, where else could I possibly leave him?
And the biggest shock came when the child opened his eyes looking at me with the same green irises I so clearly remembered.
He had Lily’s eyes.
No matter how hard I try to let life take its course and allow myself to come out of my sister’s memories, here he is as a constant reminder.
I had thought I would hate Harry Potter. But how could I when he had those eyes I so longed to look upon once again?
Life has always been cruel to me. Unimaginably cruel. Thrusting upon me the responsibility of this child for whom my sister died. The child which I should hate but can’t. The child which no matter what happens will also be sacrificed for wizardkind just like my sister.
And it was then I vowed not to let the child ever find out about the magic. Because no matter how hard I pretend to hate him, I cannot lose the last sign of my sister to that horrible magic world. Losing Lily had been enough for me.
However hard I tried to force the magic out of Harry Potter by giving him as normal and extremely ordinary a life as I could, still the magic world found him.
And as he is standing at the same platform I lost Lily to years ago, I know he will meet a same fate.
In the beginning, the magic will be utterly delightful. But in the end it will show its most dreadful face to him. And that too when he is least expecting it.
Just like it happened with my little Lily.