The now thinner face of a dusty haired man with sad lukewarm eyes apparated late evening in the shadows as the sun had long begun to set. Percius Clements made his way past cottages down the narrow road. Maybe because of the hour or simply they were having dinner or perhaps, they were all used to such strange sights no one paid attention to the stranger on foot.
The little lane curved to the left and the heart of the village to reveal a small square. There were several shops, a post office, a pub, and a little church whose stained-glass windows were glowing jewel-bright in the setting sun all across the square. There were a couple of villagers mostly those going in and out of the pub, where laughter could be heard as the door opened and closed.
Percius briefly raised his gaze to the church that laid before him, before pulling it away. There was a kissing gate at the entrance of the graveyard that had been slightly been left open. With a creak, he closed the gate after him to gaze at the desolate scene before him. Behind the church, row upon row of gray tombstones protruded from the grassy earth.
Making his way past the nearest graves, Percius rather familiar with the route made his way to a group of headstones that belonged to the Vinovich Family. Finally, he came to a halt at the newest tombstone that still glistened in the setting sun. The carved words on the gray tombstone read, "Sara Messalina Vinovich, Born 1910 Died 1973. A wonderful daughter and one of the bravest Auror's ever known. She will be sorely missed and nevermore forgotten."
Reaching into his waistcoat, he pulls out a shrunken bundle of blue flowers. Percius murmurs the reverse incantation as the blue gladioli quickly grow as he reverently places the flowers before her. There are several dozen blue flowers strewn on the grave, no doubt from well-wishers, family, and friends. But they must have known that blue was her favorite color.
However, they did not know that gladioli were the flowers she had always joked with him that she had wanted for her funeral. And when asked she had said, "They are strong and majestic like I am. Besides, I'd like to believe that if I were to die, it'd be in the line of duty for a good cause." And how right she had very been.
Closing his eyes, Percius enjoys the silence as the warmth of the sun is barely felt on his face as the orange view is so very dim now. A crunch behind him causes him to flinch and instantly reach for his wand as he whirls around to face the intruder. "I'm sorry, it was not my intention to startle you," said, the dark-haired woman with sleek hair pulled tightly into a bun.
There were traces of sorrow in her sharp eyes as the crow's feet under her eyes had slightly deepened as a direct result. A pair of square glasses sit on the bridge of her nose as Percius eyes widen in recognition of the younger witch. "Professor McGonagall, it was no trouble at all. I was merely meditating, t'was my own fault," Percius admitted.
Her black school teaching robes slightly flutter behind her as she comes to a stop before the grave. "I had been meaning to pay my respects for some time now, but time just seemed to slip away," Professor McGonagall confessed as she too pulled out a shrunken blue bundle of Hydrangeas.
Percius did not speak for a moment as he watched her sincerely lay the flowers onto Vinovich's tombstone. Straightening up, Professor McGonagall is silent as she clasps her hands together before her. After a moment, Percius asks, "Who did you lose?"
Professor McGonagall visibly flinches, before with a husky burr says, "An old friend from my youth, Dougal McGregor."
"Ah," Percius softly said. "Yes, the muggle father who faced down a werewolf with only a muggle weapon in hand to save his son. His bravery is to be commended."
Professor McGonagall's lips press together in pain as she says, "But as is Auror Vinovich. She not only killed Fenrir Grayback but even died to protect the boy."
"How is the boy?" Percius curiously asked as he recalled the boy, he had carried away from the tragic slope that fateful night.
A sad smile crosses her face as Professor McGonagall replies, "My brothers tell me that his widow is moving back to live with her parents in order to care for the children. However, I am told despite having his memories obliviated the boy still claims he was saved from a monster by his father and Vinovich."
"Well, in that case, I would not be surprised to see him at Hogwarts in a few years," Percius said with a soft chuckle.
"Yes, a child's magic can be quite powerful at times when it manifests," Professor McGonagall confessed with a smile. "I'll admit that it pleases me to no end knowing that at least the boy will not forget the sacrifice of his father nor that of Vinovich."
Percius lets another chuckle at her response as Professor McGonagall slowly joins in as they turn into loud peals of laughter. Sniffing, they both sadly smile at each other as Professor McGonagall notices it is dusk as the sun had vanished from view. "I best be heading back to Hogwarts. I've got students who will get into all sorts of trouble on the weekends."
"Ah, yes, Head of Gryffindor is it?" Percius teased.
"And what is that supposed to mean Auror Clements?" Professor McGonagall said with narrowed eyes.
"I was a Ravenclaw, Professor," Percius smugly said. "I wouldn't know anything about that sort of thing."
Professor McGonagall snorts through her nose. "Pesky know it all's." Percius flashes her a smug smile, shaking her head Professor McGonagall mutters something about flighty bird brains as she turns away to leave.
Percius watches her vanish through the graveyard as he turns back to the grave before him. "I'll be back before you know it, Sara," Percius promised before he too made his way out of the cemetery. A deep silence fell upon the cemetery as it remained as grave and still as before. And as it should be for the dead preferred the silence to rest therein.