I could feel my throat closing up and sweat starting up.
"I'm going to take you to the infirmary now!" Slughorn orders and proceeds to half carry, half escort me to the Infirmary. I almost faint again at the next view I see. No Madam Pomfrey anywhere.
A different healer comes over and takes one look at me before ushering me to a bed. "You need food, something with a lot of glucose in it." The woman demands and looks at the man who'd brought me in here.
"Professor Slughorn, what happened to the poor child?" She asks in a concerned voice, and I look up at the professor.
"I don't even know who she is." He grumbles.
"I want to see Albus Dumbledore!" I shout out without thinking, my whole body shaking in fear.
"Albus?" Slughorn asks, and I nod frantically.
"I WANT TO SEE ALBUS!!!" I shriek again. Both of them flinch.
"Alright. Alright. Alright. What's your name, child?" Professor Slughorn asks. "So, I can tell him what student requires his presence." He looks at me.
"Valentine Ev-" I stop as Dumbledore's voice fills my memory.... ‘Valentine Dumbledore!!! Defeat Riddle before twilight of the fifth year. Raze the snake. Crown your head.’
"Valentine Dumbledore." I finish harshly, and they stare at me wide-eyed.
"Dum-Dumbledore?!" Slughorn stutters, and I nod.
"Yup. That's my name." I finish, eyes hardening.
"Alright, Valentine, sweetie. Here just eat this for me, please." The healer says, and I look at the tube of instant glucose, deciding to agree with her.
I gulp the sickeningly sweet substance down and feel myself relax a bit into the comforting beds that I knew so well.
"Ah, I have such a headache," I mutter to myself, wanting to go back home. I wanted to be with my friends and hang with Harry and the twins. I wanted to sit and laugh with Neville and Luna.
I felt tears pulsing at the back of my eyes and sniffle, pushing them back.
It was around half an hour later when Slughorn comes back with two other men in his company.
"Who's this? She is not a student at my school." The man says. I assumed this was the Headmaster Dippet by the tone of his voice and by his choice of words.
I see Albus to his left, and I can't believe the difference fifty-nine years made. If there was any need for evidence to prove that I had time travelled, it was this.
Albus Dumbledore was tall and thin, with auburn and grey hair twirled into a ponytail at the back of his head. His usual beard was silver and was so long that it could be tucked into his belt.
His nose, crooked as if it had been broken at least twice, was wrinkled in confusion and his eyes, a brilliant, soul-piercing shade of blue, were also confused at seeing a strange student he'd never seen before in his life.
I sigh, raising my head to look at the ceiling as if asking some other force to give me patience.
"My name is Valentine Dumbledore," I state again in a harsh tone, turning to look Albus in the eye.
The name has Professor Dumbledore tilting his head deep in thought. No ounce of recognition stems in his eyes, making my heart drop.
"Are we related by any chance?" He asks me, and I rack my brain for a lie that made sense.
"I am your cousin," I state, making his eyes widen. I send a silent thanks to Ronald Weasley for being such an avid Dumbledore fan.
"My mother was your late aunt Honoria," I say in a dull tone, and he gapes at me.
"You look nothing like her." He states, making me raise a brow.
"It takes two to tango professor," I say in a snide tone.
I was honestly enraged at him for him doing something that was 59 years into the future. He stared at me, thoughtfully and stares at my robes.
"Why are you wearing Slytherin robes?" He asks, and I curse myself.
"I stole them to fit in and not have anyone ask any questions." I think quickly. "I wanted to meet my cousin," I add swiftly. He looks even more suspicious.
"Why didn't you send an owl?" He asks, and I shrug.
"Didn't have the money to get one." I lie quickly again.
"My aunt's been dead for two years now. Why come visit me now?" He asks, and I sigh.
"Is this an interrogation?" I ask and rest deeper into my comforters. "I almost fainted a couple of minutes ago," I whine, making my voice weak. His eyes light up in alarm.
"Horace? Why is she faint?" Albus asks Slughorn and the professor shrugs.
"She was asking all these random questions. She asked about a Severus Snape and said he was the Slytherin Head instead of me, which is preposterous!" He rages in a hurt tone.
"I'd never seen her in my life and was instantly curious, considering she was supposed to be in my house." He huffs.
"She asked for the year too. She might be a bit..." He stops his loud whispering to make the crazy motion with his index finger, pointing it at his forehead. "Loony." He finishes in a louder whisper, and I grit my teeth.
"While your utter disregard for others is quite impressive professor. I can assure you my hearing and sight are not impaired, and I could see and hear everything. While it may be true I was asking delirious questions, might I point out the massive elephant in the room? Yes? Why, thank you.” I snarl at him.
“I was suffering from hypoglycemia which, if you don't know, is when the body's glucose storage runs out. And when that occurs, DEAR PROFESSOR, the brain starts to make ketone bodies to supply my brain instead of glucose, which is its prime food source. So I sincerely apologize if my heath caused you any discomfort." I announce in an angry haughty tone.
Slughorn was agape, his eyes swirling with anger and annoyance. He was sputtering, trying to save his image in front of his boss.
Dumbledore was fighting to hide a smile, and Dippet himself looked highly amused.
"Well, girl, you must be a witch; otherwise, you wouldn't have been able to get in Hogwarts," Dippet tells me, and I nod, taking out my wand from its place in my wild mane of hair.
Dumbledore was staring at the spot on my head where I'd removed my wand with a strange look on his face.
"Yes, I'm a witch," I say, making him nod.
"You can stay here until your health recovers, but the final consensus comes down to Albus. We'll let you and your um....cousin talk. Horace, if you will be to kind as to accompany me?" He asks Slughorn, leaving no room for argument as he literally seems to float away with the vast amount of grace he had.
"Valentine?" Albus asks when it was just us two left in the Infirmary. The healers had even gone as well, giving us some privacy, and there were no patients here except for me.
I raise my chin to meet his gaze, searching for any recognition in there.
"I don't even know how you expected me to do this." I murmur, realizing I was talking to future Dumbledore and not this one.
"Pardon?" He asks, and I sigh.
"Look here, Professor. Have you heard of time travel?" I ask. His eyebrows get hidden in his hairline in shock.
"That's potent magic, Ms. Valentine." He tells me, and I raise my own eyebrow at him.
"Oh, that's precious coming from you," I mutter.
"What is that supposed to mean?" He demands, in an insulted tone.
"I don't want to talk about it here. Anyone could be listening in." I say, and Albus raises his wand.
"No one is now." He says and surrounds us in a bubble of blue magic.
"I always loved it when you performed this spell. So cool." I grin.
"Past tense, I see?" He asks, and I nod.
"You were- I mean, you will be my headmaster in 1991. You teach all my friends and me." I state, and he seems to understand what I was trying to say.
His eyes light up as if he'd connected the dots to some intricate puzzle.
"You're from the future." He realizes.