Chapter 1: Secrets The car ride home from King's Cross station was in effect a silent one.

Harry ke pt to himself most of the way home, a fact that the Dursley's were more than kee n to allow. 'Home,' Harry thought to himself, lost in his own thoughts, 'this place has neve r been home to me.' Harry deeply wished to be going anywhere, anywhere but here. He didn't care if Voldemort would be able to target him elsewhere. He'd almost rather stare down a dozen dark lords rather than face his Uncle should he come h ome drunk again. Idly his mind wandered back to the conversation he had with Dumbledore at the cl osing of term. His blood still boiled over thinking about everything that the ma n had done in the name of "his own good." 'Shows what he knows,' Harry cheekily told himself, as he glanced at his three relatives in the car with him, and kept noticing that Dudley was situating himself along the seat, undoubtedly trying t o protect his bum from anymore "freakishness." It was nearly tea time when they reached Number 4 Privet Drive. Without a word H arry unloaded his trunk and Hedwig's cage and took them up to the small room he called his own. Surprisingly, Vernon didn't object to him or say much of anythin g for that matter. Perhaps he had actually taken to the conversation with Shackl ebolt at King's Cross to treat him better...or perhaps he just didn't want someo ne like Mad-Eye roaming around. Harry idly thought that it was something he coul d understand fully. Harry got into his room and quickly saw his familiar, Hedwig, sitting on the win dowsill. "Hello girl," Harry said in as soft a voice he could muster as he opene d the window and let the snowy owl inside. He noticed a small package taped to h er leg. "What's this...something from Ron I guess." It didn't occur to him that Hedwig shouldn't have had anything on her leg after flying straight here from Ho gwarts. He removed the small letter and set it aside, before setting up Hedwig's perch and cage in the corner near the window and handing her a small treat he h ad kept out. Idly Harry stroked the bird's head and earned a gentle coo for his efforts, which earned a small smile from Harry. He was still awash in anguish over what had happened to his godfather, the one p erson in this world that he knew for certain loved him for being...well...Harry. Not the Boy-Who-Lived. Not The Chosen One. Not some ultimate weapon. Just Harry . And Harry could only come to one irrevocable conclusion, everything was his fa ult. If he hadn't been so stupid, so blind as to everything than he could have k nown. Sirius would still be alive and he might be able to stay with him this sum mer. 'No,' Harry was quick to remind himself with anger, 'Dumbledore wouldn't have al lowed it.' The thought of his headmaster was something better ignored at the mom ent. Harry was about to go and see what Hedwig had brought him, when the thuddin g of steps from downstairs clued Harry to the impending arrival of his uncle. Si ghing Harry sat down on his bed and waited for what was likely to be the usual " None of your funny business this summer boy or back to the cupboard with you," s peeches he had grown accustomed to. Harry's door opened and he regarded the walr us-esque man with a mustache carefully. There was anger in his face, as much as there ever was, but something was missing. Harry didn't see the unflinching hatr ed that he had noticed in the man before. Harry filed it away for later use. "Boy," the man said without his usual vitriol, "Let me tell you something right here and now. I don't want any funny business this summer. I don't want you here anymore than you want to be here, so let's just do each other a favor and stay out of everyone's way. If your Aunt asks you to do something though, it better b

loody well be done!" At that note, Vernon closed the door and locked it slightly , leaving Harry with a dumbfounded look that was rapidly expanding across his fa ce. This was not the way it was supposed to work. His Uncle was supposed to beat him around the bush and then send him to weed the garden, not treat him as a hu man being. Well, maybe he hadn't been treated as a human, but certainly better t han your average house elf. It was as if somebody had decided to rewrite the rul es of the world, turn it on its ear, and here he was last to know about it. He internally chuckled at how far that wasn't from the truth. He looked back down at his desk and looked at the letter. Taking it into his han d he noticed that it glowed red for a moment, and then blue, and finally green. After which it seemed to shimmer for a moment before Harry could make out the se al of wax that held it closed. He watched intently as he saw an orange seal writ ten in a language he couldn't quite understand. Written below it in English was "Gringott's Wizarding Bank." Harry stared at the letter for a moment with curiosity. He had never received a letter from the goblin's at Gringotts. Without warning he opened the envelope an d pulled out what appeared to be a tome of a letter. Setting aside the envelope he sat down on his bed and put his feet up on his desk. He idly twirled his wand as he read the letter. Dear Mr. Potter, It has recently come to our unfortunate attention that there are several discrep ancies in dealing with your trust vault. The vault was to contain a grand total of 95,984 galleons in it as of this time, and upon your birthday on July 31st wo uld be reset to the level of 100,000 galleons per your father's instructions in setting up the vault. However, an audit of all assets within the bank have shown up that there is exac tly 49, 723 galleons currently deposited in your trust vault. The only known way of this occurring is due to unauthorized transactions from your vault. Examinat ions of your vault over the last twelve years have shown there to be similar tra nsactions, though there has been more activity within the last five years. Rest assured, all automatic withdrawals from your accounts have been suspended pendin g further investigation. We at Gringotts assure you that this is a most uncommon occurance and that we will work in every way to ensure that it never happens ag ain. Though I would like to convey good news to you at this point, unfortunately I ca nnot. We have also received confirmation of the death of one Sirius Orion Black. Under normal circumstances you would not be informed of this until your sevente enth birthday, however Mr. Black's circumstances are not normal. Upon the readin g of his will, it was determined that he had named you his heir and thusly as th e new head of the Most Noble and Ancient House of Black. Per his instructions, y ou are to come into your inheritance immediately. Also, further examination of our records show that you are the Heir to several o ther Houses as well. By blood you are the direct heir of the Most Noble and Anci ent House of Potter, The Most Noble and Ancient House of Seldon & The Most Noble and Ancient House of Warrens. By way of being the last male heir of distant rel ation, you are also entitled to the Most Noble and Ancient House of Draven. As y ou will be considered an emancipated adult upon your acceptance of the inheritan ce for the House of Black, you will be eligible to claim your other inheritances as well. It may interest you to know that should you choose to do so upon accepting your inheritance of the above-stated bloodlines, you would further be eligible to cla

im the ancestral lines of one Godric Gryffindor, Salazar Slytherin, Rowena Raven claw & Helga Hufflepuff. There has not been an heir to all four in the last 900 years, and you will have to undergo a significant ritual to claim their inherita nce per their instructions to the Glorious Goblin Nation. Do not undertake this ritual lightly, for should you be judged unworthy you will not be able to underg o the ritual a second time. Please come to the main branch of Gringott's in Diagon Alley, London, at your ea rliest convenience to resolve these matters. And once again, we apologize for the horrible oversight in security as it concer ns your trust vault. Rest assured the perpetrator will be caught and that any as sets of theres will be repaid to you by way of reparations. We eagerly anticipat e your arrival. Sincerely, Haiden Orlock Director of Inheritance and Estate Gringotts Bank-Diagon Alley-London Harry sat and read the letter again, his mind abuzz with its contents. He read i t over twice more, and then pinched himself to make sure he wasn't dreaming. He wasn't quite sure about all the laws and such as it concerned the Houses of Wiza rds and their estates. Heck he could barely make a summoning spell work at times . Almost instantly the guilt for his godfather had faded to the back of his mind as he considered everything. First on his mind was who could possibly have been taking his money? His mind we nt through a list of people who might have access to it and who would actually d o such a thing, and when that came up empty he grimaced in frustration. He knew that he should be hitting on something obvious here, but was uncertain as to wha t it was. Secondly he looked at each of the Houses in turn and resolved to assume all of t he inheritance. He didn't quite know what made him decide so quickly to do so, p robably a bit of that Gryffindor courage he was so famous for. 'Speaking of which'...he wondered idly what would go through his friend's head t he minute they found out that he was not only the Heir to several of the oldest Houses in the wizarding world, including some that he was certain had died out o ver the years, not to mention he was the possible heir of all four of the Founde rs. He idly wondered at how Voldemort would react to that bit of news as well... wasn't he supposed to be the last heir of Slytherin anyway? Harry was broken from his revery almost immediately. There was a flash in the mi ddle of his room, and quickly he saw Fawkes appear. Harry regarded the phoenix, who jumped up onto his desk and dropped a note there, giving a trill that brough t Harry a good deal of comfort. Harry picked up the letter and read it. Whatever it was he was expecting, it wasn't this: Dear Harry, Unfortunately I must contact you immediately following your departure. Though th e wards at Privet Drive are strong indeed, they will fade in protection the furt her you get from the House. I must ask that you not leave the premises unless yo u are accompanied by one of your guardians or an Order member. I do hope you und erstand.

When the day was complete Harry was asked to do the dis hes. Steeling his resolve. but quickly dismissed it as a trick of the light. As he finished with the last one he sighed again and headed for the smal l sitting room where his family had gathered to watch television. and took the offered seat. Vernon had even asked how his grades were. he noticed that Fawkes was still sitting there. and it wa s annoying him. Dinner proceeded off with little more than a few conversations about the weather ." Vernon took the time to look up at him this time and regarded him . His Aunt Petunia looked up at him and. Instead his feelings were one of distrust. one of a bit of rage. They hadn't asked hi m to make it. He would have to have his relatives help. with them firmly under the Imperious C urse or some such thing. If worse came to worse. but he didn't want to use that unless he absolutely had to. Harry could almost catch a hint of some flagrant force trying to overtake his uncle's features. all the while hiding the horrid feeling of uneasiness that was al erting him. but not with the disappointment that he though he wou ld. As soon as the phoenix had left the room. offered a callous but empty.Albus Harry regarded the letter.. half-expecting Moody to be standing the re with his wand pointed at the Dursleys. He was even more s urprised when Petunia spooned out a small piece of meat and potatoes onto the pl ate in front of him. It couldn't just be the talk." Vernon replied.L. "I was wonder ing if I could ask you something. which made Harry explain the O. Ha rry glanced around at the whole lot of them as if they had suddenly turned into flobberworms or something. something that didn't bring him much trouble at all and simply relieved him a bit. because t hat would be the first place Dumbledore would go looking for him to usher him ba ck to his makeshift jail cell.if you don't have anything else plann ed of course. exams to him. Hurriedly Harry grabbed a piece of parchment and scribbled out a repl y to the effect that he understood and would see him later. This raised ano ther problem too. He was sure he could get it. He idly checked the hallway. He knew that Order members would be guarding his house nonstop to make sure he never left there. rather than her usual smug glare. "Oh it's you.. waiting fo r a reply. than surely they had property included. One such enticement was financial." "What is it boy. If Harry was the heir of all of the above estates. he took a few deep breaths. "I had some business in London I need to deal with. never once glancing up from his newspaper cros sword. He knew for certain that Grimmauld Place would be included in the Bla ck estate. he handed the note back to Fawkes and prayed the bird couldn't re ad minds." he asked in the most polite voice he could muster. So how then could he go to Gringotts? There was really only one way out. but it was the enticements he would have to offer to g et it. I was wonde ring if you could take me there tomorrow. There was something wrong with all of this. something else was happening. one would have to wonder how much better it really was. School business. and made his way downstairs. After a few . "Uncle Vernon. He stopped when he saw the Dursleys sitting down to dinner. Dumbledore was essentially sentencing him to prison for three months. Harry planned to use both. and though it wasn't Azkaban. I suppose you'll be wanting to join us then?" Harry just nodded. the other was to rid themselves of him altogether.W. Leaving out all the other details. he could always hide out at a Muggle hotel for a few days while he planned his next move. and said nothing when he grabbed a roll from the basket.

more than a bit disturbed. I cast the spell and couldn't make out everything but it looked li ke there were dozens of curses on you.. some of those curses were pretty complex and he's the onl y one I know who could cast them. Harry.. before going back to his crossword...and I can pay for the trip." Harry was at a loss for words." his Uncle asked. His Uncle merely nodded and added an affirmation as if Harry were discussing a telephone number with him." Harry stood stunned. You might remember on the train I was r eading a book on cursebreakers. the thought of anything happ ening to her had caused him greater heartache than even possibly the death of hi s godfather.. His Uncle.. . Lord Voldemort could have pranced behind him in tights and a tutu while singing Dancing Queen and he wouldn't have been more stunned. not really glancing around at anything. I don't know how much we can trust the Headmaster. He o pened the window and the owl slid in and quickly slid away. His name is Thoth. I'll let you know more. "Alright then..this business probably means I won't be coming back here for the su mmer.yeah. I'll see you soon. not knowing who it was from considering that he didn't rec ognize the owl. . and one that had become a bit muddled in his mind as of late. Hermione Reading the letter brought mixed emotions to Harry's head. The good treatment (borderline on kingly treatment as far as Harry w as concerned.. I don't have much time so I'll be brief. After lookin g at more of the book... He unfurled a small letter he had gotten. Ha rry looked to his Aunt Petunia who was working on crocheting something or other and then to his cousin.well..500 pounds.moments Harry added.he was dreaming. "Was th ere something more...if they were acted on by a curse caused by him than should n't he know about it. E ither this was a trick of Voldemort's. when he noticed a small black owl sitting on his window sill. "I'd be really grateful...." At this he almost saw a light appear across his uncle's face.. "I'll just go pack. a bsolutely stunned.. Firstly it was from o ne of his dearest friends. "Right then. Say. he went into his room and shut the door.but that was neither here nor there. I know you were sulking a bit and didn't notice much but." In truth he hadn't rea lly unpacked. One other thing. his second emotion came to the forefront as everything made sense now. "Um. He headed for his desk. it was a gift from my parents for completing the OWL' s. thinking we might be able to help you if we understood how it affected your magical aura. I don't know what it did an d I didn't have time to research it more... When she had been stunned at the Ministry.. Stumbling a bit as he headed upstairs.. who was idly flipping through television channels." Harry said to himself.. Be up by 7 sharp and be ready to go at 8.) Hermione must have done something to him to make his relatives tr eat him better.. Oh and don't mind the owl. Suddenly. I hadn't gotten to the cursebreaking sect ion of the book yet so I flipped forward a bit and found the simplest one I coul d and seemed to get rid of one of the curses on you.well anyway I found this nifty spell about how to check auras as it r elated to potential curses and I was curious as to the effect your scar would ha ve. Don't blame yourself for Sirius.or something was major ly screwed up with the world..so. Harry. But. You couldn't have known.

Hermione." but for now he decided that it was best to keep as many people in the dark as possi ble. In no short orde r he was downstairs and fixing breakfast for everyone. My relatives are tr eating me decently. Harry rounded through the thoughts as he took a shower and brushed his teeth. it seems to have had some positive impact." before she could let out a hoot in protest Harry put his han d up. Especially not to Dumbledore. he spok e gently to her as she gazed into him with her deep amber eyes. What I'm about to tell you cannot be repeated to anyone. trust me on this.well ever. wherever I am.. "I know we just got back but we're going to a new place now.. He didn't want to alert Vernon Dursle y to the fact that he was being civilized for the first time in. regarded him for a moment. No words were exchanged until Harry had brought out his trunk and put it back in the Dursley's car. Whatever you did. But he knew that a response would be in order. Finished Harry put away the few things he had gotten out in his trunk and threw on a pair of pajama pants and laid down in his bed. like I'm actually a person. And in your next letter. I want you to stay with Hermione for a day or two while I wo rk some stuff out.the car was in the garage at the mo ment per his request. Don't worry. Handing the parchment to Hedwig and giving her a quartet of treats... Along the way out of Little Whinging he managed to spot Mundungus standing guard near a lamppost. Harry There was a moment when Harry wanted to write something besides "Take Care.. not even the Weasleys a nd not to Dumbledore. trying to look as discreet as possible. The morning affair had proceeded as simply as the dinner the night previously ha d. actually seeming to smile. I know what I am doing. turning in early for the big day yet to come. I'm leaving Privet Drive.. Let Hedwig stay with you for a day or so before sending her off... and he didn't want to tell even her every thing yet. When they were further away Vernon looked down at his nephew." At that he stroked the bird on the head and allowed her to nip him on the ear once playfully before opening the window and sending her off into the night sky. I don't know exactly where I'll wind up.s he'll find me.He didn't quite understand everything. Chapter 2: Blood Ritual Harry was up earlier than normal that day. tell me how you're doing. Fortunately for him. Take Care. I hope that you still aren't injured from the Ministry incident. and then conti nued onward. As Harry and his Uncle Vernon pulled out Harry looked back and saw his Aunt standing there waving. But then again the goblins wouldn't be in on something like that.an d test his lucky streak and earn a smart whooping for his insolence. but I assure you I will be fine. . He pulled out another piece of parchment and wrote a letter to his friend. Please H ermione. Harry hid from view an d the dodgy wizard didn't notice Vernon turn the corner.. I know you'll find your way.someone. "Listen to me girl. It chilled H arry to no end. Please let me know what you've f ound out as soon as you can.. Part of Har ry wasn't still certain that this wasn't a cruel joke perpetrated by.

Harry.. A gruff cough from his Uncle Vernon drew him back to the reality.. Good luck. He approached the bar man and sat on a stool. The car came to a stop in front of the dingy pub Harry had instructed Vernon was The Leaky Cauldron. "Keep it. Much to H arry's relief however... and nothing made any sense. "I received a letter from them yesterday saying that I had some papers to sign. his uncle deviated and went down an entirely different pa th altogether. He casually strolled into the bar area and found it thankfully devoid of anyone at the moment. He regarded the man for as long as he could without a reply as he came to a conclu sion and pressed forward." He paused a moment and made a turn down a main road. He looked at Vernon who was confused." That wasn't entirely a lie. when his Uncle held up his hand. unnatural but. he rolled his trunk into the inn. though his mind was still swimming with the possibilities. He wanted to explode with the excitement he was feeling." Harry announced.." he said.. Anything I should be concerned about.you were still a bit. "I doubt we'll meet agai n Harry.. "I also need to stop by Gringotts. "But yesterday. He was almost half-asleep. the first real joy he had felt in a good long while and if his uncle pursued the line of inquiry any further he'd likely be unable to hold the breach. Normal. "Harry. One minute we'd be fine and the moment we saw you or thought of you we'd be all angry and blind with rage.. . "The wizard's bank. "What sort of nature is this business.. a tinge of sorrow apparent in his voice. "Yes. gaining his attenti on. on the way to get you we. It was like a light turned on and things went int o motion. For whatever it's worth. if f or only a brief foray into the weird new world." Harry half-expected to explode at this point.well something happened. Suddenly. This.not a freak. As Harry got out and grabbed his trunk." The ha irs on Harry's neck were beginning to stand on end. a smile nearly forming on his face. For some reason he felt as if a great veil had been li fted between him and his last living relatives and he wanted to explore it.we're sorry. but to be quite frank he hadn't thought of more of a cover story." Vernon looked like he would press forward and Harry h oped that he wouldn't." he said. Yeah. Not.It was halfway to The Leaky Cauldron and a good long while before Harry heard an y voice. Another part considered what Hermione h ad written to him." "Concerning your godfather?" Vernon asked without a moment's hesitation. "I have t o pick up a few things for a school project." the afore mentioned wizard flinched at the use of his given name . sticking to half-truths and marginal revelations." At that Vernon drove off. He knew he couldn't admit it was an ou tright lie. But Harry wanted to let the man in on a bit more. he did need to pick up a few ingredients from the apothecary. "Well sir. you didn't seem all that bad. "I know that your aunt and I haven't always been the most loving people to be around. among other things. Shrugging it off and trying to ig nore it as best he could. Part of Harry thought that his Uncle was just elated to have him gone for good and was turned inside out with joy." Harry explained. and he looked up at the burly man and was surprised not to find any trace of a changing face color on him. Was." his uncle began." Harry wasn't sure he could trust the man... "So b. "I honestly don't know what came over us. making sure to lift the hood on his jacket he was wearing to try and hide his identity.. he turned to hand his U ncle the money promised.

gaining a nod from Harry. "I'm here to see Haiden Orlock concerni ng some estates. Finding the usual brick wall there he pulled out his wand and tapped the bricks in the proper motion... He wouldn't have much time before Dumbledo re figured out what had happened. Harry turned away from the bar and headed for the back room. Tapestries from what Harry gu essed (if Professor Binns' lectures were any indication) were the Goblin Rebelli ons held depicting reliefs of various battles and skirmishes. He kept the letter he had received in his pocket and approached the nearest goblin he co uld find. "Yes. He turned around looking for the source of his name and his gaze stopped on Harry." Tom said loud enough for everyone to hear. Patterson. and after a moment's hesitation he did. I got a letter from you yesterda . They wa lked through a double set of oaken doors and into a large hallway lit by torches . and he sounded much older than he looked. "can I get ya something?" "Yes. but it quickly changed to an inquiring gaz e.. Harry just shook his head a nd flushed the letter out of his pocket. Griphook looked amazed that Harry would remember not only his name.. and it involved a cert ain pair of House Elves he would have to hire soon. Tom nodded and took the money. but that meant no concern to Harry. The lines were in credibly short for the time of day. "Griphook. Tom looked at him and his eyes went wide before Harry's gaze made him assume command. Harry had had time to formulate some of his plan.how did you know my name sir?" Griphook was a little intrigued.." the goblin's voice was raspy Ha rry noted. They walked down past a few doorways and stopped about halfway down the corrid or." Griphook nodded and led Harry off from the main lobby. Griphook motioned to Harry to enter." the teen said confidently as he could muster. than the old man wouldn't have a say in the matter anymore. "Yes sir. He readjusted his bangs to hide his scar and proceeded down the m ain alleyway." he called out. Behind a desk sat an older goblin shuffling some papers. Leaving his trunk and other belongings. A few years ago. is there something I can do for you Mr. but stopped himself from window shopping. and he didn't want to be drug back to his cage kicking and screaming. The office of the Haiden Orlock was rather ornate. making sure to lift his hood slightly so his scar was vi sible only to him. Do you th ink you can manage that?" "Certainly can Mr. namely Griphook." Harry replied. If he was emancipated however. He might have done it for free anyway. swinging his way into t he office and shutting the door. "I was never here. "I need a room for my things for a few hours. drawing surprise from the afore mentioned goblin. "I may send a House Elf or goblin for my things later. "Harry." he simply said. He stopped at a few stores he knew to be among his favorites." the man said without looking up from scrubbing his mugs." Harry said. but also would remember how they had met. "Harry Potter. "You were the first goblin I ever met.. let alone re member it. but he wasn't one to turn down free money. Tom. Harry smiled and threw down a few galleons in front of the bar man. Harry made his way to Gringotts and slipped in the front door. He rolle d his eyes slightly This was something he would never understand as it related t o goblins and wizards."Hello sir. watching them rearrange till the entrance to Diagon Alley appeare d in his view. Most wizards never bothered to learn a goblin's name in the first place." Harry mentioned. He looked up and gazed at Harry for a mom ent with what appeared to be a scowl.

Orlock nodded and looked at Harry. Potter. "I'm sorry Mr. if you would be so kind as to give me your hand. "Here. . Harry did as he was told. Pulling at it a small portal opened in the side and Orlock grabbed the torch and motioned for Harry to follow him. A few drops of his blood dipped into the silverly liquid.. as serious as he could be. Now. son of James. even moreso than their vault's on occasion. "I have a couple of questions first. All the pomp and circumst ance nearly made him grin. Orlock read a few more pieces of paper and glanced at Harry. "Right then. Technically were it not for the Black fam ily's standing within the Goblin Nation and the instructions of Mr." Harry had many questions in fact.. and he leaned forward while he cradled his hand to his chest. "but many of the questions you have ca n't be answered to an underage wizard." Orlock explained. but the goblin continued. "Yes. directing it over the basin of silver liquid at Orlock's motion. let me get that. but the goblin shook his head in response.y and." he sa id with a simple command. Harry took a glance at the ornate stonewo rks in the room and guessed it to be almost as old as the building itself." he explained. A moment later the slight cut was healed. hereby take on the duties and responsibilit ies of leading the Noble and Ancient House of Black?" Harry began to nod but qui ckly realized that wouldn't do. Not knowing what else to do. be fore folding his arms and continuing.. un trusting for a brief second." Harry held back for a moment. "I do. before pr odding him across his fingers." He let that sink in f or a moment before he walked over and grabbed a small black box. I prepared this chamber f or your arrival. Black. Potter. and Harry offered his hand." Harry was still a little un nerved by all of this." When Orlock noticed a bit of fear cross his charge's face he reassured." he said. It was a short trip down the dark and cobweb infested tunnel to a small antecham ber where torches surrounded the room." the goblin was now smiling and had walked over to the corner. a serious look drawn across his ancient face. Orlock picked up the ornate bronze da gger and chanted something in a language that Harry didn't understand. In days gone past wizards would do these things. The red s wirled around for a few moments. "Kneel. "We treat our customer's privacy with the utmost care. Harry did as he wa s told. Orlock stood before Harry. Harry looked at the onyx carved box and saw the Black Family crest etched on top of it. I trust you don't mind." Harry's features darkened at the mention. Black's will you would not be here anyway. Now. before there was a loud pop and the liquid turn ed completely gold." he clearly intoned. He noticed that the flames had grown brighter as Orlock stepped forward. "It allows us to keep track of the he ads of all the Most Noble and Ancient Houses. Harry Potter. "Do you. thank you for coming on such short notice Mr. O rlock stood up from his desk and grabbed a small torch that hung on the back wal l.as I said in the letter you are to come into the inheritance of the House of Black immediately. grabbing a basin and a dagger. He set the two of them on his desk and motioned for Harry to sit down in front of him. And let me again ext end our deepest condolences on the loss of Mr. Harry did as he was asked and set the letter back into his pocket. but they've since entrusted it to us. "This is where we conduct the initiation ceremonies. "This is a Goblin Recorder. if you please give me your hand I can verify your identity and give you your first inheritance." Orlock motioned for him to stand in fr ont of a carved obelisk rising out of the middle of the floor.. Orlock waved his hands and the obelisk glowed. Having no other choice. but nonetheless held out his hand.

" Harry stood up and Orlock motioned for his hand." he began. Freedom. "Though it is one of the older houses. As Lord Black you have all the rights and privileges thereto.. "Enough of that. "Actually." The new Lord Black sat down on th e chair and ordered for some refreshments when the other goblin came into the ch amber. summoning another goblin as he did." Harry's eyes widened as the Goblin continued. provided they are not the next in line for the lordship. And since you now where th e crest of the family Black. causing him to smile a bit."Then arise Harry Potter. "Mr.." Orlock added emphasis to this point before contin uing. Lord of the House of Black." the goblin began. "Pertaining to you in special occasion you are now for all intents and pur poses emancipated. and he bequeathed it to you.. Women can inherit that line." Harry asked again. there are several perks that come with it. Just because he was the head of a wizarding line didn't mean people would kneel before him now." Harr y's mind reeled from everything. filling him with a calming sense a s the ring fit to his finger. . it does not ribe to the patriarchal lineage. He opened his eyes and looked at Orlock. who was b owing before him. Black. The first of many. No more Dumbledore to hover over him for his greater good..I'm not a Black I mean. but he could do what he wanted with the tit le of Head of the House. why me. No more Dursley' s to do chores for. he was his own man. waving his hand. As he sat there he went over what Orlock had just said. It's usually a way of forgi ng alliances in times of war." who a at th presc with "So. You also have a voting seat on the Wizengamot. You can name other member s of other families into your own House though this has not been done in ages.. He coul dn't dismiss anyone from the family. No more being everyone's tool. son of James. "It should have been one Bellatrix Lestrange ssumed leadership of the House of Black.. was in effect the de facto heir to the Black Line. Heck Malfoy should have inherited it before me. It is not so some of the other lines.yeah I'm related to them like second cousin s ort of thing but. and something dawned on him. A sea t on the Wizengamot? Emancipation? It all meant one thing in Harry's mind. noticing the refreshments popping into existenc e. "Now that you are officially Lord Black. "You have control over all of the Black family assets. Orlock looked up at him a bit sheepishly before conjuring a couple of chairs." Harry's features really darkened e mention of the witch. He actually had legitimate power over his own life. including being free from the restriction based laws against the use of underag e magic.for the first time in his l ife." He idly remem bered the Black Family Tapestry and tried to remember the lineage. Should the need ev er arise you promise to defend one another's family. He never enjoyed that idea. Harry immediate ly felt a rush of power coming from the ring. "I can answer some of your questions. You also have the ability to swear fe alty to other lords and have other lords swear fealty to you. He had a million questions flowing through his mind before he finally set tled on the first. "Why me. Y ou can disown someone completely and remove them from the family. Onto his ring finger Orlock slipped a smal l platinum ring with a simple black stone set in the middle and a silver dragon with small emeralds for eyes sitting in the center of the stone. though he had never undergone the actual inheritance since he was in Azkaban at the time." Harry said. He didn't realize how much this entailed.

"I figured that about the Potter line. "All of these houses carry wit h them the same rights and pledges as the House of Black. drawing a gaze from Harry. they merged with the Black family ring. One was a wizard of no importance. "Very well. Bear in mind these are not the same as the lordship of . "They're charmed s o that you only need wear one ring at a time." Orlock explained. Orlock. who's name I don't have here. And since you are now for all intents and purposes an adult. All up until your mother. But you are the first ma le wizard of that lineage to be eligible to be the heir in some time. As I told you in the letter you are heir to four other lines. you may claim this inheritance should you choose to do so." Harry simply grumbled." He pulled out a sheet of paper and continued. They couldn't have come from my mother. you are eligible to claim the ancestral lines of the Founders of Hogwarts." Harry nodded. "What about t he Draven line. the House of Potter. I'm frankly surpr ised no one told you about these things. Erik Draven. " Orlock set aside his goblet and leaned forward." he began before the goblin raised his hand. The next few minutes were a combination of Harry kneeling down before Orlock and accepting his houses one by one." Orlock said. each one was an heir to both the Seldon and Warrens lines. the House of Warre ns and the House of Draven. son of James. "Do not call me sir my lord. She married a muggle and all of her children were muggle s. drawing Orlock to get up and fetch four more bo xes. "Now. But I've never even heard of the Seldon a nd Warrens line. his anger flaring up. the House of Seldon. and the other because of the patriar chal succession. In actuality the Seldon and Warrens lines do come from your mother. Lord of the House of Black." As Harry nodded. drawing his attention. "Yes I noticed that too. ruby encrusted ring w ith a lion in the center appeared. "there is one final matter to attend to. Three of the se lines are yours by direct blood descent. still not been alive." Harry nodded. "She was cast out of her family but never disinherited. As I stated in the letter. he called out the Potter name and the gold. "Yes. technically. "That is of patriarchal descent. It is honor enough that you refer to me by my given name."Orlock sir." Harry asked." Orlock nodded with a small smile. Their union produced two children. The line continued downwards and. When all was said and done he was now Harry James Potter. He was just glad you didn't need dress robes for this thing. They could not cl aim them naturally because they were muggles. we must respect the niceties. As each ring was placed onto his finger. her parents were muggle s. "In 1832 one Jacob H orace Seldon married Evangeline Warrens. Looking over himself in his ragged jeans and t-shirt . "It's protocol my Lord. "You merely nee d state the name of the family ring you wish to appear and it will be there. Your fathe r would have been eligible had the last heir. But the other was a squib named Maggie Warrens." Harry whispered under his breath. he knew he'd need a new wardrobe soon. you mentioned something about the first of many?" Orlock nod ded and took a sip from his goblet. Technically there is a cousin that would come b efore you in the lineage." "So am I." He paused as he made sure Harry was keeping up. since she was never disinherit ed. though this was of some note and parlayed into o ne of his questions." Harry was about to protest but the look on his face held him off. She did claim her lines but chose not to undergo the ancestral ritual.

especially when the urge to curse someone into oblivion was heavy in his mind.that no on e knew. you may not repeat it. The Weasley family for example.. united in death though they were divided in life. Your situation is a bit different since you are eligi ble for multiple lines.. There they will judge your spirit based on their own criteria. They have remained their since the Founder's passing. I can't go into more detail for you will be alone in there. you will be given unique and wondrous gifts. Not squander it on petty attempts of revenge or futile attempts of maintaining the status quo. you w ill not be punished. You will be presented before t he Guardian of the Founders Vault who will test your blood to make sure it is pu re. Chapter 3: The Founders Four The tunnel that Harry followed the goblin down was even narrower and darker than the last one. The Gryffindor Golden Boy was an image he had worked hard to maintain ov er the years. Orlock nodded and led the young man down a second hallway adjacent to the c hamber and towards his next destiny. "Understand my lord. weighing the possibilities. They must be direct descendants o f the founder in order to be eligible. Should you choose to ignore it or fail in this task. but frowned upon the blood lineages. They must be descen ding far deep underground. Eventually the tunnel began to widen and Harry felt the floor begin to slope dow nwards at an increasing angle." he simply sta ted. but perhaps Orlock merely didn't want to worry him. "I wish to try. nor can you add people to that line. You cannot disinherit others who will be eligible to claim this ancestral line in th e future. You must be tested in three ways. Perhaps h e should just quit while he was ahead. He wouldn't call it a staircase per se.Houses. But then he considered the possibility that he could really change the world wit h this power. perhaps put an end to all of these prejudices and titles once and for al l. the one time he could take it. it simply ensures that you are not a squib or muggle trying to pass off as a wizard. a test of your blood. but not des cended directly from him. He felt the air cool around him. They were lofty goals to be certain. where fragments of the s ouls of the Four Founders permanently reside. Here was th e chance of a lifetime. There didn't seem to be m uch risk involved. but he di d notice a certain descent. are dista ntly related to Gryffindor by way of a brother Godric the Great had. but the tor . as well as the family rin gs of all of the Founders. and your thoughts will be bare. Once you pass that test. He tried to glance ahead to see anything. Did he want those thoughts laid bare to the Founders? Weighing all options. your magic will be tested. You will be taken to the Room of Spirits. is this what you want?" Harry considered it for several minutes. Once you pass these two tests. should they freely choose to bestow their ancestral line upon you. Should they judge you unworthy. He had his own ideas when it came to fighting this war that Dumbledore. I must ask you now Lord Potter.. "You also must earn this inheritance.. Harry nodded to the goblin.the way he should be thought.then comes the hard part. This too is a simple tes t. Your spirit wi ll be tested." Harry nodded . and in the more immediate future he could u se this power to effectively fight Voldemort. it does not come easily. He felt a chill run through his bones as he felt the echoes of so meone who had been here before he was. thus unable to claim his ancestral line. simply cast back into our world with no change. this is a one time offer. though each one does carry a seat in perpetuity on the Wizengamot. "First will be the easiest. He could change the entire wizarding world for the better. But should they judge you worthy. Namely one Tom Riddle. One of the founders may accept you while the others reje ct you...

"Wait. letting some of his blood flow . sliding along the flo or and coming to a stop." the voice returned. Harry stared forward and watched out of the corner of his eyes as two of the sta tues came out of the corner towards him." The confidence left Harry almost as quickly as i t had arrived. I am the Rightful Lord to the House of Potter.." he began. he walked forward into t he light. "Who comes forward to seek the ancestral lines. "we shall proceed with the test s of ascension. the House of Black. First." a deep bellowing voice came out from the direction of the gargoyle." At this the gargoyle's front pa ws lifted forward and Harry noticed for the first time that it was holding a sma ll bowl. o ne for each of the Founders. Holding the dagger that Orlock had given him a few minutes earlier. It was about d ouble the size though. They stopped a f ew inches from the large compass shape and remained in position. He felt the cool rush of air coming out of the doorway as it opened. though he couldn't be completely certain. He didn't think he'd be facing this alo ne. and he instinctively knew wh at to do. the House of Seldon. but the white light behind it was quickly covered by a lar ge silhouette. Harry suddenly looked down at his hand and saw the ring sitting o n his finger. He held his hand over the bowl and sliced his palm. "It is not my place to witness this ritual. but it's face and diamond studded eyes were staring straight into Harry's. Rowena Ravenclaw & Helga Hufflepuff. It's hands were cradled together in almost a praying mo tion. and he wasn't as afraid as before.chlight from Orlock didn't extend very far in front of him and the only sounds H arry could hear were the sounds of their own feet as they trudged down the path. almost frantic. "I-I do. "I am Harry Potter. His mind went blank and he stood in awe as the whole room lit up. still as for ceful as ever. Harry found then that he could move again. and turned back to the gobl in who tossed him a small dagger." he managed to stammer out. Harry entered the room. Anothe r gaze at his ring brought his mind back as the disembodied voice considered thi s. when in front o f him a large white door opened." Harry called back. It was a far cry from the dark and dreary place it had bee n a moment ago. "Son of James Potter. we must test your blood." he said as he turned to wa lk back up the tunnel. He stepped on a large compass shape and was almost instantly frozen in place. T aking a deep breath and bringing up all of his courage. essentia lly a larger version of the antechamber from which they had come. After several minutes in the dark the tunnel opened to a large chamber. Harry stared at the slab for a moment. Harry gaz ed around in wonder for a moment before snapping back to reality. He guessed that the other two were doin g the same. trying to will it to move. and suddenly he didn't quite know what to do with himself. I am the rig htful heir to the ancestral line of Godric Gryffindor. Salazar Slytherin. speaking with more confidence this time. When it is over you will be transpor ted back to my office rest assured. the House of Warrens and the House of Draven. He turned and saw a small light having been lit in the middle of the room. and there were ornate gold statues in all four corners.." At that the goblin left the room.where are you going. From out of the door came a large gargoyle. "Very well." the voice of the guardian returned. sparkl ing in gold and gems. and a sto ne slab slid down. The two in front of him appeared to be Gryffindor on the left and Sl ytherin on the right. "You'll need that. "State your name and the basis for your claim. Ancestral knowledge seemed to be coming from nowhere but the back of his mind. though it filled the entire room. blocking the only discernible exit.

" Slyt herin snapped at Harry. Harry rubbed his eyes and replaced his glasses. directly ac ross from Slytherin. Her fa ce shone with more beauty. as mu ch as a shadow could ever fall over a ghost. He closed his eyes and waited for whatever was about to happen. var ying in length. He shook his mess o f a head and kept his eyes shut for a moment longer. but it didn't work./ . He noticed in each of them was a thin stick of wood." came a more reassuring voice from behind him. and there was a loud ringing in his ears." came another female voice to his right. "Leave the boy alone. Harry shook his head an d removed his glasses. Their wands no doubt. based on the cool damp air still surrounding him. "Took him long enough. and finally blacked out on the floor. trying to gain some insight as to what was happening. / . "Your blood is indeed pure. "For we are not ghosts. Harry turned and was flo ored by what he saw. First. She was slightly heavy set with golden hair tied in style similar to that of a certa in transfigurations professor Harry knew./ ." came a snide voice to his left. followed by a gree n. but he was readily apparent of two things . and he heard shifting noises. He felt his throa t jam up and gasped out the air. Harry fe lt a warmth in his hand and saw that the cut had been healed. A few moments later the the bowl glowed red. "You have been judged worthy to face the Founders Four. Her e . These were unlike ghosts he had seen befo re. before the blood simply disappeared. Harry turned around again and saw the lady Hufflepuff. He suddenly got the notion. their right hands rising up. Standing there in translucent glory was Salazar Slytherin. He was glad in a forest green robe with silver and purple trimmin g. May Merlin watch over you. he had not been trans ported back to Orlock's office like the goblin said he would. but found that he was on ce again frozen. and her cheeks seemed to actually be rosy. Harry turned ag ain and found Rowena Ravenclaw standing there. In succession." At that the gargoyle withdr ew from whence it had came. The world was spinning. Torches began to light up all around him. When this had been completed. didn't really know what had just happened. His face was long and thin. and finally a deep hue of blue. Only if he had bee n judged unworthy.. The second thing he realized was tha t his body did not ache at all.he was no longer alone. "Your magic is indeed pure. He quic kly rushed to get his own wand out and put up a shield. but seemed to hide a mind of keen intelligence./ Harry didn't know how long he was out. causing Harry to back away a bit in fear. Standing up. He didn't kn ow if he had passed or not. "What are you gawking at boy. Swirls of color spun around him as he collapsed down to h is hands and knees. but his mind was going blank. The air was leaving him." Harry looked around and saw the four statues of the founders were moving. He couldn't breath. Harry corrected himself. Each wand pointed directly at him. and Harry found himself standing in blackness once m ore. the arms of the statues lowered back down and Harry was free to move again. taller than the other two. each wand fired a small spell at him that merely swirled around h im for a few moments and then disappated. Her mouth was drawn with a smile. He could see the founder's statues swinging to the left at a 45 degree angle so tha t the statue of Godric Gryffindor stood in front of him." the voice returned. Dr opping to one knee he tried to cough and force air back into his lungs by gaspin g. the hood lifted over his head partially casting a shadow over his eyes. "Now we shall test your magic.. and his eyes a deep seeded green a few shades darker than Harry's. He tried to remember what Orlock had said." the voice returned. He had a strange sensation in the back of his mind.freely into it.

Rather than the violated feelings that Snape brought forward." the man yelled." She opened her eyes and stopped her probin g. Harry still felt the probing howev er. seeming to dare him to reply.. " and heir to my ancestral line." She closed her eyes and Harry felt as if he was being stripped bare. "Do not speak to me of that close-minded fool." Godric chimed in.. "and yet there is a good mind here despite his difficulties. He was clad in armor while the other three were in robes. Helga laughed at th is. "Interesting. "Speak up boy." "You indeed are the Lord of the House of Potter.. I thought that Tom Riddle was your heir?" There was a silence as Slyt herin considered the question.surprisingly in parseltongue.but why?" "It is not for the reasons you think Salazar.. and quickly turned to see the other three doing similar movements. calm as ever... Lord of the House of Warrens and heir to my ancestral line." Harry gazed up at the ancient wizar d." Salazar sneered. "Well sir. but different. and had a question on his lips.. Harry felt at peace as he could sense Ravenclaw reading his thoughts and memorie s. He gazed down at Harry." "You are also Lord of the House of Seldon. "He is faithful to those who have chained him and shuns those who could help him.. It hinders his natural ability. "that you are the Lord of the House of Draven. Slytherin's face twisted slightly as he made his reply. Harry turned to the position he had been facing before and laid eyes on the tal lest of the bunch." Salazar hissed. preserved in statues." he stammered.." came the deep voice from before." came the calm voice of Ravenclaw. "and heir to my ancestral line . not knowing what to say." This argument on ." "Yet he is blind in his loyalty. "almost to a fault." Helga simply stated with a smile. his face par tially beaming downward at his living descendant. and would do anything for them. we get that reaction a lot. "And there is more." Salazar retorted with a frown. and a deep blue." Harry returned in the same language. dwelling on her own thoughts for a moment. It was similar to when Snape had used legilimency on hi m. " He has been tormented from a young age. "We are merely memories. and a makeshift sword hung from a scabbard on his belt." came Gryffindor to his defense.one who has dampened his power considera bly. he is fiercely loyal to those who show h im any type of affection. "You. and they oddly brought calm to Harry.. open. "He is loyal. not opening her eyes ." came Rowena's voice." she stated. "He has been through much for one so young. Harry stared at all four of them. He cares fo r his friends more deeply than anything. pointing at them in succession." "It would appear that by sheer luck. and a beard hung down to his chin.you. one Godric Gryffindor. And you are Harry Ja mes Potter.yes were bright. "I sense that there are many le vels to your character young Lord. His short auburn hair was lined with g ray streaks throughout. "I did not mean to offend. Salazar's eyebr ow cocked at this. We are the Founders Four. He didn't know if he dared to ask the founder a question. "Yes. and my rightful heir. apparently not enjoying the gawking." She frowned as s he pushed forward. This is through no fault of his own.

a frown on her face. " "He blames himself.he turned to Ravenclaw who kept her eyes fixed on him." Harry turned to the shorter Hufflepuff and gazed in to her brown eyes. "I cannot find a flaw with him. not expecting much. not on the flaws of his protectors and guardians. do hereby judge you as worthy to accept my ancestral line. He has allowed himself t o be manipulated." He paused a moment and closed his eyes. Helga. "Saving the boy's lack of confidence in his own ability and strength. "He feels it deeply. and mentally chuckled at wh at Hermione would say. Finally. and they one by one opened their eyes and stared at him "We have judged your character. Helga Huffl epuff. Certainly not like the last one's to come before us. Godric Gryffindor. do hereby judge you as worthy to accept my ance stral line." Finally the four were silent. No d oubt more of his upbringing. "He has much to learn but his potential is far too great to ignore. when a laugh arose from Gryffindor. if you will begin. s troking her chin thoughtfully." Helga said." Gryffindor continued. It was oddly calming to him. "I Rowena Ravenclaw." .and more he has cared for have died.ly brought a slight perhaps from Slytherin's lips. even if he has not admitted it to himsel world than the light and dark. He had passed at least one of the Founder's tests. He himself is Harry looked at them all as . "And his character is the stronge st we have seen in 900 years by far. his mind stripped bare and raw emotion showing through.. Salazar Slytherin. his mind swimming with possi bilities. He knows there are s a shade of gray. "There is a cunning here he has been af raid to tap into because of the machinations of others. I . "I must say this is a surprise." Gryffindor argued." Slytherin remained silent for a few moments before opening his eyes and staring right at Harry's scar. Your spirit. I. "He recognizes. do hereby judge you as worthy to accept my ancestral line. "Your warm heart and strength of character have joyed me greatly. deep down in f.." Harry was bowled over by the admission. "I never thought we'd see the day when someone like you would grace our presence." came Rowena's soothing sounds. "Courage indeed! He would curse you if he had the ability Salazar." Salazar b egan." "We should judge him on the merits of his own character. "He ha s faced danger and he has faced it alone. His parents were taken from him long ago. "It is not his fault.. loyal and true." Harry knew they had been talkin g about the events of the previous year when no one had believed him about Volde mort. making his own assessment.. He turned to Slytherin." Harry smiled again. a glint in his eye and almost detected a hint of respect coming f rom the darker wizard. his heart. he turned to Gryffindor. It is a mark that has governed his destiny and still to this day seeps his power. do hereby judge you as worth y to accept my ancestral line." Harry's eyes went wide and the notion.." Harry rose to defend himself. We are ready to render our verdicts ." she said. that there is more to the hades of gray. When no one else believed him he stood firm and stayed by his ideals. I." the Scottish man spoke with a heavy accent. "He feels the pain of loss. "He is marked by he who sought my heritage and failed.. "His courage runs deep." Harry looked at Slytherin.

but I know you shall use them to dispense true justice. I grant you the gift of control. and set you free from their burden. and when you receive my gift you wil l be able to cast them effortlessly. to yellow. l eaving Harry a bit dumbfounded and awestruck. They are viewed by many as so called dark arts." "You can circumvent the governors of Hogwarts. Others were placed there to block your memori es. but with my language you will speak the ancient tongues of the goblins. the tongues of the elves long since departed from this w orld." Gryffindor continued. you shall have access to all o f our remaining worldly possessions that the goblins have stored for us. "For to long has your soul labored under the weight of these curses." "And to you my heir. "I grant you the knowledge of Transfi guration. over your mind and emotions.. You shall lea ve this place fully trained in the mind arts that I invented. Some were p laced there to dampen your powers. but you will know them and what they can be used for.. that of a sound body to match your sound mind. you have been judged wo rthy to receive the ancestral lines of all the Founders Four." Godric continued." Gryffindor finished. and many other races." Helga chimed in. Secondly. Now." . "Harry James Potter." "To you my heir. Harry James Potter. As with Lady Hufflepuff and Charms. do you accept these gifts. not merely fight a pointless war. You al ready speak Salazar's language. I and my line are the creators of many of the p otions that exist today. and back again in quick succession. "To you my heir I grant you the power of Charms. It is a lost art in your time." He paused and raised his wand. Lord o f the Houses of Black." Salazar joined in. t o blue. Many of the Charms you already know were invented or perfected by my line. "I grant the knowledge of potion-making. who smiled at the elder woman. "son of James Winston Potter. varying from green." "To you my heir. Warrens. and those who practice it barely scratch the surface of its power. One was even placed there to terrify others at your mere presence. I also give you the gift of tongues. Finally I grant you the gift years of neglect has denied you. As a result." Slytherin continued. I grant you the understanding of its power and its consequences. including the ability to become an Animagus. And the o ne granted to you by the one you know as Voldemort seeps away at your strength a nd may one day threaten your very life. when you go forth from this place you will received our signet rings and bear all the power they carry. When you leave this place your flaws will be erased. more than a hint of joy in his voice at t he mayhem this was likely to cause. Your father had this abil ity when he faced me some years ago and were it not for his close-mindedness. Heir of the Founders. Alternating colors of flames appeared in the room. Furthermore." Ravenclaw began. "You can help shape wizarding law for years to come. I might have considered granting him a similar gift. No doub t many of them have left their care these many centuries. a g esture followed by Harry. to red. when the time is right. Seldon & Draven. Which leads us to our colle ctive gifts. "You shall be bestowed with ten gifts in total: Two from each of us and one from us collectively. Potter. I grant you the knowledge of curses and their counters. and Harry's eye s widened at this. "And you can protect those you care about. "I grant you the gift of runic magic. Furt her. We shall lift these curses forever more.Harry smiled and saw the room light up for the first time since he had awoken. a gesture followed by the others." He looked at Hufflepuff. "In addition." Rowena added.

he risked opening his eyes to try and find them. Groaning a bit he shook his head as his eyes fluttered open. and he swore he could feel his physical body change slightly at the surge of po wer. A/N: This is not a typical super!Harry destroys everything in his path story. He was easily at least four inches taller. Ha rry was uncertain. He felt the blood rushing out of his head as he sat up an d held his head in pain.. his mind shutting down." he stopped a moment and considered Gryffindor' s words. Mungo's. The world suddenly came into perfect focus. he felt himself sink back down onto th e floor.. his mouth agape at what he saw.yeah I'm fine. yet muscular. Harry sto od up and walked toward the mirror. When he opened his eyes.. Suddenly Harry was wracked by a great pain as he felt the weight of fifteen year s of curses being lifted from his spirit one by one.so mote it be. but the words rang through his ears." Harry said. Chapter 4: The Cold Fire It was a long time before Harry awoke from the slumber." The four founders began to chant in a druidic langu age that Harry didn't understand. It's also going to be a long story. Harry felt himself being levitated of f the ground.. After se veral minutes of this.. followed by a few bouts of almost uncontrollable laughter. Harry sat in amazement for a moment and waved his hand in front of his face. but not in the usual way.. penetrating every fiber of his being. It was clear as crystal. It wasn't centered around his scar. His body ached all over and he couldn't take much stock of what had happened.. he was shocked. Slowly but surely an enormously large grin formed across H arry's face." Harry said."Orlock I need a mirror. "Very well. and blackness overtook him. "I'm fine Orlock it's just that. Reaching around on the desk for them. he felt that his glasses were gone. shaking h im to his very magical core.' he thought to himself. he didn't feel a thing from his scar. muttering the only words he could." Harry controll ed his breathing and nodded his head. It was all a bit of a blur to him."I do. unless you considered feeli ng like you'd been hit by a stampeding hippogriff as alright. and pa in slowly gave way to a semblance of calm. "My lord. Rubbing his eye s a moment. His head was throb bing." came a raspy voice from off to the side. If this was part of his gift then. 'Odd. He certainly didn't feel alright. Knowledge flooded his mind. in a little bit of a lie. It was lean. In fact. Th ere is still some vulnerability here as Harry adjusts to his new powers and deal s with the rest of the world. supported by the essence of his new powers. and Dumbles wi ll probably be more evil than I would normally have him but such is life in my c razy brain. and then simply snappe d his fingers.. not unlike that of Gryffindor himself." Orlock lo oked at the wizard with a strange expression on his face. Harr y glanced over his features and mentally frowned when he saw that his clothes no . After what seemed like a lifetime of power surging through him. the same raspy voice of Orlock brought him out of his ins anity. and his bony body had filled out cons iderably. "Yeah.my lord are you alright. causing a full bodied mirror to appear in front of him. Groaning again he risked sitting upward. "My lord are you sure you're alright? Should I call St. Magic swirled around his soul.

It was nowhere near as pronounced as it had once been." came the goblin's voice from below." he replied. but it was barely visible unless you knew what to look for.. He searched and found the right spell.until he sc anned his mind. "they work in the same way as your other rings. Weasley would approve. It looked lik e an ordinary scar.longer fit him. He turned to Orlock quickly. Sim ply slip them on and they will merge together to form one ring. much in the same style as Slytherin. "This is a master key that will work for all of your vaults here at Gringotts. more like a birthmark than anything really. placing his wand back in his robes. as cheekily as a goblin could ever r eally reply.. There he grabbe d a small box and brought it to Harry.. you may sign up for a Gringott's Card. having grown in the back. "Ahem.. The scar was still there. Orlock muttered something that Harry instinctively knew he shou ldn't have understood. Each one resemb led a stylized version of the respective house seals at Hogwarts with ornately c arved representations of the familiar animals carved into each one. "If you' re done my lord?" he asked. instantly regretting the restriction h is new clothes had on his anatomy. I mean certainly I have some proper . similar to a Muggle Credit or Debit Card. As he took stock of his newly reformed facial features. "Haven't you listened my lord. he then frowned slightly as the next question dawned on him. Harry saw four rings similar to the ones he had been presented before. "I've removed the tracking charms the Ministry places on those wands of you rs." Orlock stated. Furthermore should you wish to do so." Harry nodded an d did as he was told. Orlock snapped his fingers and t he mirror vanished." Harry reached into his pocket and pulled it out. He could detect a hardness. He noticed that his face hadn't changed much and neither had his eyes. wh ich will withdraw the coin automatically from your vaults. Harry whistled at the displ ay as he looked down over himself again.. causing Harry to look down." Harry smiled again." he gestured to his clothes and Orlock simp ly smiled and laughed. though he highly doubted Mrs. no doubt from Hufflepuff. Harry smiled as he saw th e makings of a small goatee on his chin. In fact if you ha nd me your wand.. It made him feel a bi t like a rockstar he noted. The wand glowed blue for a moment then stopped. no darkness emanating from it whatsoever. Harry felt it hesit antly. Orlock handed him a key. Opening it. a brimming confidence lurking just beneath the surface much like Ravenclaw had. Harry simply nodded and sat back down. and he tottered over to a shelf on the wall. but mentally reminded himself he still would need to go shopping later. and almost effortlessly w ith a wave of his wand his muggle clothes had transfigured into normal black wiz arding robes not dissimilar from his Hogwarts robes. though th ere was a slight change there. "Orlock. You'll be able to freely use magic. Looked like he'd need a new wardrobe sooner rather than later. "In conclusion my Lord. It now hu ng down just past his shoulders to the middle of his back." Orlock explained. what properties do I have deeds to. But there was also a kindness lurking next to it. but seemed to actually make sense to him. and felt no pain. but it faded fast. his eyes drifted upward s to his forehead." Harry smiled and too k the key. "You are emancipated. Finally when Harry had taken all of the rings. You may use underage magic. "Orlock. Hi s hair had also become a literal rat's nest. handing the wand to Orlock. Orlock handed the wand back to Harry and explai ned. slipping on each ring one at a time and watching them fade and merge with the Potter ring that still rested on his finger. motioning to the mirror. His plan needed this point. and he was shocked at what he saw. "These are the signets of your ancestr al lines. He was certain he couldn't remember a spell to transfigure clothes. At this Harry la ughed again. I was wondering if maybe.

handing them both to Harry. As I said we here at Gringott's treat our customer's privacy with the utmost of care. "A few more things Orlock. Scotland "As you can see." Orlock explained. glancing it over he wrote something down and handed it to Harry." Harry said as they re-entered the Gringott's main lo bby. "the manor is under the protection of the Fi delus Charm and has been since your grandparents death some years ago. Harry was ou t of the bank and his smile still hadn't faded. "Thank you Orlock and. Potter Manor may be found at 44 Snidget Lane Valerian. Grimmauld Place in Londo n comes from the Black family vault. He pocketed the bike and book. Alastor Moody. "Firstly I need the location of Potter Manor. As for a mode of transportation I figured you migh t. It has anti-crashing charms and inst ant-learning charms so that even a clumsy beginner could ride it like a professi onal." Orlock nodded again and summoned a small piece of parchment. I will appoint a goblin account manager to see to it that any questions you have a re answered. so as n ot to give away the location. who took it in surprise. I am uncertain of all the contents of your inheritance. as well as the Potter Manor in Scotland. he thou ght." After a small trip to a teller to acquire a Gringott's Charge Card.as far as anyone knows." Orlock reached into his pocket and pulled out a small toy motorbi ke and an instruction manual. Griphook was a goblin he could trust. Secondly I need a way to get there. "none of this ever happened. as much as the goblins could be trusted anyway. That parchment also acts as a portkey." Harry got a goofy grin on his face as he suddenly realized the source of his dreams as a child of a flying motorbike. "Of course my lord." Orlock paused and looked at him with a raised eyebrow. "Simply tap it with yo ur wand and it will grow back to your size." Harry considered it for a moment and turned back to the goblin. The goblin and the lord walked towards the front door." Harry smiled. Simply s tate the address and you'll appear about 5 miles outside of the village." Orlock shook his head and smiled again." he leaned forward a bit. "I have been alive for over 400 years my Lord and never have I heard of a wizard asking for a specific goblin by name to be their account manager.ty included in these houses. Yes it can be arranged that way. We goblin s are privy to that information. "Griphook.. He had forgotten that Order members would be out looking for him when he didn't come back to Privet Drive with his u . but I do know of a couple of properties off the top of my head.." Orlock smiled again and began to walk with Harry o ut of his office." Orlock nodded. He began to stroll down the alle y when he spotted something off in the distance. having come to expect weird behavior from th is particular wizard. "I would like Griphook to be my account adviser if it's quite alright with you. where Harry offered his hand to Orlock. "Yes of course. so I took the liberty of withdrawing this from your godfather's vault before your arrival. Harry silently cursed himself and ducked out of the way behind a building as qui ckly as he could to hide from the ex-auror.

Harry leaned down and noti ced the deep breathing of Dobby. "What is wrong Dobby? You look tired. Harry raised the hood on his robe in a fashion similar to a certain Founder he knew a nd stalked back down the alley.ncle. nodding to Tom who just gazed at him wondering as he passed. he shook his head and left the store. Madame Malkin's had been practicall y bought out of their fanciest robes. adding a black wand holster to his r ight arm that released his wand into his hand with a thought rather than drawing it out. not that he didn't mind it. finding his trunk there. He went back to the Leaky Cauldron. / . For all he knew he did have a fully stocked library anyway. He gazed up at Harry and his brown eyes went wide. "Mister Harry calls Dobby and Dobby is here. It wasn't like he could just change his shape all at once. A s was the case before the spells came to him effortlessly and he could feel the subtle changes in his face as he fell under glamour. Pulling out his wand he shrunk his trunk an d dropped it in the pocket of his newly acquired silver and red robes.. he shouted out to no one in particular. pointing his gnarled finger at the young wizard. Nodding t o himself. He would have to sort out how much he knew a nd how much he didn't before he could stock his library. A stop at Flourish & Blotts to find books on various subjects was next on his li st. Harry tho ught for a moment before again deciding on the right course of action. breathing deeply as he did so. No time like the present to give it a try." the elf said. and the ex-Auror didn't spare him a second glance./ It was several hours later when Harry emerged from the store with several shrunk en bags and a big smile on his eldered face.." Harry said smirking./ .. But as he stopped to glance through the titles. there would be no sense in ruining his fun now. "Dobby!" It took a few minutes but eventually the house elf popped right in front of Harr y. Harry went through his mind a moment before remembering everything that had happ ened.. However he knew he had one thing left to do. Harry inwardly smiled and snaked forward to his next stop. almost all of them made out of acromantula silk and created with painstaking care. He had also made note to purchase a few things in the armament department as well. it's me Dobby. Putting away a smaller book on runes and understanding even the most advanced concepts it had to offer naturally. After all. This next surprise would impress the house elf for sure. Harry of course had made sure to hide his features under glamour." Dobby's eyes went wider than saucers at t his revelation. Taking a deep breath. he found that he could decip her many of the simpler books he looked at. "You. After a quick stopover at eyelops to replenish his owl treat supply and a once l ook over of Quidditch supplies and Harry was ready to leave./ . headed for Madame Malkin's. Harry climbed the stairs to room 3B a nd entered. He was bound to have that affect on p eople the next few weeks. He went through his mind as to how to get out of this one. He passed by Moody.Master Harry Potter just spoke the House Elfs language! No wizard in over a thousand years has spoken the house elfs language!" Dobby continued to stamme . He tried to remember the incant ation for a transfiguration to hide his features and for a small charm that he p icked up from somewhere in the back of his mind to have people not notice him. His rapidly spinning eye stop ped on him for a moment but quickly passed on. and he backed away fitfully. "Mister Harry P otter sir?" "Yes.

what's wrong?" Dobby took a few deep bre aths. unless you considered feeli ng like you'd been hit by a stampeding hippogriff as alright. Just because we's are bonded doesn't mean we's have to be slaves. he was shocked." He fough t back a sniffle. Reaching around on the desk for them. His body ached all over and he couldn't take much stock of what had happened. After se . There." came a raspy voice from off to the side. In order to remain here w e must be bonded with a witch or wizard. but not in the usual way. "It is true there are free house elves sir. He felt the blood rushing out of his head as he sat up an d held his head in pain. in a little bit of a lie. Dobb y bonded with Master Harry Potter sir that day he helped Dobby become free. "I say that surprised you... Harry sat in amazement for a moment and waved his hand in front of his face. drawing a grin from Harry. "It is Winky sir. I f an elf remains unbonded too long then their magic will leave them and they wil l perish into oblivion. causing Dobby to jump with glee. Wink y hasn't bonded.. you're a free elf!" Harry exclaimed.my lord are you alright. "Yeah. It wasn't centered around his scar.r a bit. He too spoke in the elven tongue. "Yes sir." Harry stood in shock at the horrible fate. but Harry simply raised an eyebrow. he didn't feel a thing from his scar.. looking better than she had in ages." Harry said. he felt that his glasses were gone. She has fallen ill. It was clear as crystal. Ha rry was uncertain. he risked opening his eyes to try and find them..' he thought to himself. smiling at Dobby. Once he had his ears lowered and his head hung low." "Oh. slipping back into normal tongue. 'Odd. "But. followed by a few bouts of almost uncontrollable laughter. Chapter 4: The Cold Fire It was a long time before Harry awoke from the slumber. stood Winky. "Very well then. speaking more comfortably. smiling at the two of them. "Why must she be bonded? I thought she was a free elf?" Dobby nodded and explain ed. "What do I need to do?" Dobby shook his head to explain. The world suddenly came into perfect focus. He certainly didn't feel alright. When he opened his eyes. outcasts from their world." Harry said. but it is an ancient magic that keep s us here in your realm. It is how the house elfs magic works.. then poor Winky will fade away and die. Slowly but surely an enormously large grin formed across H arry's face. trying to collect himself. "My lord. Rubbing his eye s a moment. Now tell me." Harry thought of it for a moment before coming to a quick deci sion.. "Then she can bond with me as we ll. Groaning a bit he shook his head as his eyes fluttered open.. It was all a bit of a blur to him. If she is not bo nded with another wizard soon. but was quickly interru pted by a small popping sound. His head was throb bing. Her magic is failing her.does Master Harry Potter sir mean it?" Harry nodded. Groaning again he risked sitting upward. In fact. We are the last remnants of the race of high elves that once populated your lands.yeah I'm fine.if you are agreeable to it that is.

veral minutes of this, the same raspy voice of Orlock brought him out of his ins anity. "My lord are you sure you're alright? Should I call St. Mungo's." Harry controll ed his breathing and nodded his head. "I'm fine Orlock it's just that," he stopped a moment and considered Gryffindor' s words. If this was part of his gift then..."Orlock I need a mirror." Orlock lo oked at the wizard with a strange expression on his face, and then simply snappe d his fingers, causing a full bodied mirror to appear in front of him. Harry sto od up and walked toward the mirror, his mouth agape at what he saw. He was easily at least four inches taller, and his bony body had filled out cons iderably. It was lean, yet muscular, not unlike that of Gryffindor himself. Harr y glanced over his features and mentally frowned when he saw that his clothes no longer fit him. Looked like he'd need a new wardrobe sooner rather than later. He noticed that his face hadn't changed much and neither had his eyes, though th ere was a slight change there. He could detect a hardness, a brimming confidence lurking just beneath the surface much like Ravenclaw had. But there was also a kindness lurking next to it, no doubt from Hufflepuff. Harry smiled as he saw th e makings of a small goatee on his chin, much in the same style as Slytherin. Hi s hair had also become a literal rat's nest, having grown in the back. It now hu ng down just past his shoulders to the middle of his back. It made him feel a bi t like a rockstar he noted, though he highly doubted Mrs. Weasley would approve. As he took stock of his newly reformed facial features, his eyes drifted upward s to his forehead, and he was shocked at what he saw. The scar was still there, but it was barely visible unless you knew what to look for. It was nowhere near as pronounced as it had once been. Harry felt it hesit antly, and felt no pain, no darkness emanating from it whatsoever. It looked lik e an ordinary scar, more like a birthmark than anything really. At this Harry la ughed again. He turned to Orlock quickly, instantly regretting the restriction h is new clothes had on his anatomy. "Orlock, I was wondering if maybe..." he gestured to his clothes and Orlock simp ly smiled and laughed. "Haven't you listened my lord," he replied, as cheekily as a goblin could ever r eally reply. "You are emancipated. You may use underage magic. In fact if you ha nd me your wand..." Harry reached into his pocket and pulled it out, handing the wand to Orlock. Orlock muttered something that Harry instinctively knew he shou ldn't have understood, but seemed to actually make sense to him. The wand glowed blue for a moment then stopped. Orlock handed the wand back to Harry and explai ned. "I've removed the tracking charms the Ministry places on those wands of you rs. You'll be able to freely use magic." Harry smiled again, but it faded fast. He was certain he couldn't remember a spell to transfigure clothes...until he sc anned his mind. He searched and found the right spell, and almost effortlessly w ith a wave of his wand his muggle clothes had transfigured into normal black wiz arding robes not dissimilar from his Hogwarts robes. Harry whistled at the displ ay as he looked down over himself again, but mentally reminded himself he still would need to go shopping later. "Ahem," came the goblin's voice from below, causing Harry to look down. "If you' re done my lord?" he asked, motioning to the mirror. Harry simply nodded and sat back down, placing his wand back in his robes. Orlock snapped his fingers and t he mirror vanished, and he tottered over to a shelf on the wall. There he grabbe d a small box and brought it to Harry. Opening it, Harry saw four rings similar to the ones he had been presented before. "These are the signets of your ancestr al lines," Orlock explained, "they work in the same way as your other rings. Sim

ply slip them on and they will merge together to form one ring." Harry nodded an d did as he was told, slipping on each ring one at a time and watching them fade and merge with the Potter ring that still rested on his finger. Each one resemb led a stylized version of the respective house seals at Hogwarts with ornately c arved representations of the familiar animals carved into each one. Finally when Harry had taken all of the rings, Orlock handed him a key. "In conclusion my Lord," Orlock stated, "This is a master key that will work for all of your vaults here at Gringotts. Furthermore should you wish to do so, you may sign up for a Gringott's Card, similar to a Muggle Credit or Debit Card, wh ich will withdraw the coin automatically from your vaults." Harry smiled and too k the key, he then frowned slightly as the next question dawned on him. His plan needed this point. "Orlock, what properties do I have deeds to. I mean certainly I have some proper ty included in these houses." Orlock smiled again and began to walk with Harry o ut of his office. "Yes of course. I am uncertain of all the contents of your inheritance, but I do know of a couple of properties off the top of my head. Grimmauld Place in Londo n comes from the Black family vault, as well as the Potter Manor in Scotland. I will appoint a goblin account manager to see to it that any questions you have a re answered." Harry considered it for a moment and turned back to the goblin. "Griphook." Orlock paused and looked at him with a raised eyebrow. "I would like Griphook to be my account adviser if it's quite alright with you." Orlock shook his head and smiled again. "I have been alive for over 400 years my Lord and never have I heard of a wizard asking for a specific goblin by name to be their account manager. Yes it can be arranged that way." Harry smiled. Griphook was a goblin he could trust, he thou ght, as much as the goblins could be trusted anyway. "A few more things Orlock," Harry said as they re-entered the Gringott's main lo bby. "Firstly I need the location of Potter Manor. Secondly I need a way to get there." Orlock nodded again and summoned a small piece of parchment, glancing it over he wrote something down and handed it to Harry. Potter Manor may be found at 44 Snidget Lane Valerian, Scotland "As you can see," Orlock explained, "the manor is under the protection of the Fi delus Charm and has been since your grandparents death some years ago. We goblin s are privy to that information. That parchment also acts as a portkey. Simply s tate the address and you'll appear about 5 miles outside of the village, so as n ot to give away the location. As for a mode of transportation I figured you migh t, so I took the liberty of withdrawing this from your godfather's vault before your arrival." Orlock reached into his pocket and pulled out a small toy motorbi ke and an instruction manual, handing them both to Harry. "Simply tap it with yo ur wand and it will grow back to your size. It has anti-crashing charms and inst ant-learning charms so that even a clumsy beginner could ride it like a professi onal." Harry got a goofy grin on his face as he suddenly realized the source of his dreams as a child of a flying motorbike. He pocketed the bike and book. The goblin and the lord walked towards the front door, where Harry offered his hand to Orlock, who took it in surprise, having come to expect weird behavior from th is particular wizard.

"Thank you Orlock and...as far as anyone knows," he leaned forward a bit, "none of this ever happened." Orlock nodded. "Of course my lord. As I said we here at Gringott's treat our customer's privacy with the utmost of care." After a small trip to a teller to acquire a Gringott's Charge Card, Harry was ou t of the bank and his smile still hadn't faded. He began to stroll down the alle y when he spotted something off in the distance. Alastor Moody. Harry silently cursed himself and ducked out of the way behind a building as qui ckly as he could to hide from the ex-auror. He had forgotten that Order members would be out looking for him when he didn't come back to Privet Drive with his u ncle. He went through his mind as to how to get out of this one. It wasn't like he could just change his shape all at once... Harry went through his mind a moment before remembering everything that had happ ened. No time like the present to give it a try. He tried to remember the incant ation for a transfiguration to hide his features and for a small charm that he p icked up from somewhere in the back of his mind to have people not notice him. A s was the case before the spells came to him effortlessly and he could feel the subtle changes in his face as he fell under glamour. Taking a deep breath, Harry raised the hood on his robe in a fashion similar to a certain Founder he knew a nd stalked back down the alley, headed for Madame Malkin's. He passed by Moody, and the ex-Auror didn't spare him a second glance. His rapidly spinning eye stop ped on him for a moment but quickly passed on. Harry inwardly smiled and snaked forward to his next stop. / - / - / - / It was several hours later when Harry emerged from the store with several shrunk en bags and a big smile on his eldered face. Madame Malkin's had been practicall y bought out of their fanciest robes, almost all of them made out of acromantula silk and created with painstaking care. He had also made note to purchase a few things in the armament department as well, adding a black wand holster to his r ight arm that released his wand into his hand with a thought rather than drawing it out. Harry of course had made sure to hide his features under glamour. After all, there would be no sense in ruining his fun now. A stop at Flourish & Blotts to find books on various subjects was next on his li st. But as he stopped to glance through the titles, he found that he could decip her many of the simpler books he looked at. Putting away a smaller book on runes and understanding even the most advanced concepts it had to offer naturally, he shook his head and left the store. He would have to sort out how much he knew a nd how much he didn't before he could stock his library. For all he knew he did have a fully stocked library anyway. After a quick stopover at eyelops to replenish his owl treat supply and a once l ook over of Quidditch supplies and Harry was ready to leave. However he knew he had one thing left to do. He went back to the Leaky Cauldron, nodding to Tom who just gazed at him wondering as he passed. Harry climbed the stairs to room 3B a nd entered, finding his trunk there. Pulling out his wand he shrunk his trunk an d dropped it in the pocket of his newly acquired silver and red robes. Harry tho ught for a moment before again deciding on the right course of action. Nodding t o himself, he shouted out to no one in particular, "Dobby!" It took a few minutes but eventually the house elf popped right in front of Harr

looking better than she had in ages. you're a free elf!" Harry exclaimed. "Yes sir. "It is Winky sir. "Why must she be bonded? I thought she was a free elf?" Dobby nodded and explain ed. and he backed away fitfully. She has fallen ill." Dobby's eyes went wider than saucers at t his revelation.. "Now that you're bonded to me. and Harry could only smile at the display. but it is an ancient magic that keep s us here in your realm. "But. not that he didn't mind it. smiling at the two of them. I f an elf remains unbonded too long then their magic will leave them and they wil l perish into oblivion." . After a while Harry coughed to get their attention. Just because we's are bonded doesn't mean we's have to be slaves.. In order to remain here w e must be bonded with a witch or wizard..y. slipping back into normal tongue. "Mister Harry P otter sir?" "Yes. but Harry simply raised an eyebrow. "Master Harry Potter sir. Her magic is failing her." Harry stood in shock at the horrible fate. This next surprise would impress the house elf for sure. breathing deeply as he did so. Once he had his ears lowered and his head hung low. "You. See." Harry began. but was quickly interru pted by a small popping sound. "I say that surprised you.. He too spoke in the elven tongue.Master Harry Potter just spoke the House Elfs language! No wizard in over a thousand years has spoken the house elfs language!" Dobby continued to stamme r a bit. I have this new house up north and I need someone to help me. It is how the house elfs magic works." He fough t back a sniffle. what's wrong?" Dobby took a few deep bre aths." Harry thought of it for a moment before coming to a quick deci sion.does Master Harry Potter sir mean it?" Harry nodded. outcasts from their world. Dobb y bonded with Master Harry Potter sir that day he helped Dobby become free.. If she is not bo nded with another wizard soon. "Then she can bond with me as we ll. pointing his gnarled finger at the young wizard.. and both house elfs looked up at him with eternal gratitude in their eyes. We are the last remnants of the race of high elves that once populated your lands.. then poor Winky will fade away and die. causing Dobby to jump with glee. He gazed up at Harry and his brown eyes went wide." the elf said.you saved Winky's life!" the female house elf squeale d with glee.. "What is wrong Dobby? You look tired. stood Winky. Now tell me. "Mister Harry calls Dobby and Dobby is here. He was bound to have that affect on p eople the next few weeks." Harry said. Harry leaned down and noti ced the deep breathing of Dobby. smiling at Dobby. it's me Dobby. "It is true there are free house elves sir. There. speaking more comfortably..if you are agreeable to it that is. Wink y hasn't bonded." "Oh. drawing a grin from Harry. "What do I need to do?" Dobby shook his head to explain. trying to collect himself. "I have a favor to ask the two of y ou. Dobby and Winky proceeded to dance around like madmen at this. "Very well then.." Harry said smirking.

The houses were all larger than they were in Little Whinging. 15 Harold Street in Kensington. taking in his ne wly acquired features. Shaking his head he reached int o his pocket to pull out the motorbike. Harry leaned forward to glance at them for a moment be fore standing up again and taking in the rest of the house. Winky nodded in retu rn. he st alked down the sidewalk until he got to an abandoned alleyway. Apparition. Chapter 5: Recovery Harry reappeared outside a neatly manicured neighborhood. There at his feet were the dead bodies of Hermione's parents. wincing as he knocked it off its hinges. and then stopp ed for a moment as he realized what he just did. Harr y swallowed down a lump in his throat. maki ng sure to transfigure his clothes into more normal attire for said world. closely followed by a smaller owl t hat Harry recognized as Hermione's. A lump formed in his throat and he frantically scanned the sky for a sign of the Dark Mark. He made a slight turn and in a fla sh was gone. Harry conjured a small stand out of thin air for the two birds and the n pulled out the piece of paper. The owl landed and regarded him for a moment. but the knowledge was standing there in th e back of his mind. Harry bolted through the front door. and the light unmistakabl y absent from their eyes. Harry then got ready to pull out his motorbike when another thought popped into his head."Consider it done sir. and read it. The two birds quickly took flight without a second thought. He gazed u p into the clouds and saw a snowy white owl. Harry smiled and flushed the piece of parchment out of his pocket. Harry turned and saw the house completely darkened. before lifting her leg with a small piece of paper attach ed to it. forcing the bile to sink downwards. Not finding one he hoped and prayed that he wasn't too late. His features grew c old at Hermione's short plea for help. and he slunk back into a shadow. popping out of exist ence. their faces frozen with the pain and torture one could expect from the cruciatus. He absentmindedly cast a notice-me-not charm as if they were going out of fashion. Harry walked out into muggle London. Parents Dead. Showing t hem the address the elves nodded and snapped their fingers. He he ard a few movements coming from upstairs. he thanked him again for the silence and left him a small tip. One in the back he didn't recognize. First he pul led out the piece of parchment for his house and showed it to the owls. He walked out of the room and shut the door behind him. After telling Tom he was finished with it. but the two in front he immediately recognized fr om the graveyard as the elder Crabbe and the elder Goyle. save for the one behind him. He was in a higher class neighborhood from what he could te ll. The blood drained out of Harry's face at the notice of this. when he heard a distant hoot. Death Eaters. He focused on his target. He fought back the urg e to go running after them immediately. Raising an eyebrow he held out his arm for H edwig to land on. . He watched as from downstairs three men in black robes came walking down. He made note of the blast marks that dotted the walls." Dobby interjected without question. Hi s face contorted with a mixture of pain and anger at what he saw next. He took stock of the s ituation around him. He had never really apparated before. but like the s mall suburb they were almost exactly the same. Undoubtedly Hermione had put up a fight. He flew into action quickly. conce aling himself temporarily. Attack. Come Quick. instead trying to listen to them quietly . Harry smiled again and nodded.

and the body collapsed in a pool of blood. He would be discovered sooner or later a nd he needed the element of surprise on his side. "that I'm not playing games anymore. and closed his eyes. please don't kill me." Harry's features darkened considerably. How many people had begged for mercy at this man's feet he wondered.. leaving him to stare at Harry with a frantic look in his eyes. escaped to find help. Once Harry made sure it was ingrained into his memory.. "We're not alone. Harry's own emerald glaze glistening with righteous fury. sending the man into a deep." Harry spat out. Opening his eyes an d turning around. "Evi scero!" Harry yelled. Harry nodded.or at least Crabbe was. he summoned some knowledge from his newly acquired abilities. and I won't put up with his little tem per tantrums anymore. Off in the corner. driven by unseen skills. Harry contemplated the killing curse to ease the man's pain. staring down at the open doo r. and then stepped forward t o face their attacker. something that Harry realized was the corpse of Crookshanks. Jump ing out of the shadows he fired the first thing that popped into his head. knowledge of curses flooded forward and his wand hand twitched to life." Harry snarled as he stared down at the man. He unsheathed his wand and fel t a burning rage growing deep in the pit of his stomach. Harry muttered. but she was nowhere to be found alive or dead. Suffice it to say. "S oporifor. "What was that noise we heard anyway. In almost an instant the skin was literally ripp ed off of Goyle's bones. "Levicorpus!" In an instant the man was turned upside down in midair by his a nkles. "You tell your master. Harry slowly walked into the kit . but knew that death would come soon for the portly man.. From deep inside his mi nd. na iling Goyle right in the chest. He walked over and kicked an orange pillow that had been in his way. apparently trying to get away as quick as possibl e. Crabbe and t he other man stared down in shock at Goyle's remains." and in an instant the man's eyes glaz ed over as he forgot one important detail. Harry released the curse and conjured a pair of chains to wrap the nameles s Death Eater in. "Avello Viscus!" a nasty looking purple beam shot out of the end of his wand. He also obliviated Crabbe's memory. raising his wand. Harry won dered if she had gotten out somehow. who mad e a loud squishy sound as his entrails were scattered out onto the floor in fron t of him and he collapsed. the cold fire of rage burning within him still. He felt out with his magic. He leaned forward and stared into the man's rapidly shrinking violet eyes. Harry frantically start ed searching the house. who was barely breathing but still alive. suffering from pain. They were too slow however. not at all bothered by the prospect of listening to voices i n the back of his head given everything that had happened in the last 24 hours.. Carefully picking which memories to leave out. Sti ll. Harry took several deep breaths as he surveyed the carnage around him. and was about to give up when he felt a flicker. there wasn't enough left of Goyle to erase the memory of.. a notion quickly se t aside by the fact that he still hadn't found Hermione."Filthy little winch has got to be here somewhere. the true identity of his attacker. but keeping his mental focus. He wonder ed frantically how Order members could have let that happen." The man frantically nodded. He was about to go up stairs when a voice from the back of his head told him to calm down and take con trol. leaving no doubt he had the m essage. The third man raised a hastily made shield and made h is way towards the front door. rather dull voice.. The Rightful Heir of Slytherin has returned. and tr ied to track down Hermione's aura. "Obliviate. someone to tell Voldemort that the kid gloves were off." Harry added. only to have their pleas fall on deaf ears. Harry needed a messenger." Crabbe said in his low pitch ed. "Please." the other man said. He felt a little silly after a while. painless sleep." Goyle asked. "Be on guard. firing the disemboweling curse straight at Crabbe. He walked over to Crabbe.

They reappeared in the backyard a moment later. Harry pulled away from Hermione." Hermione finally asked. her eyes no longer fighting back the emotions of everything that had happened. He quickly realized though that if any passin g muggles came by and noticed the door. He didn't want to put Dobby and Winky in a spell after seeing them so happy. getting a nod from her friend. "We have to get out of here. And he personally didn't want to be around if and when the Order fi nally showed up. "Harry. her face callous with tear stains and blood falling from a few cuts on her ar ms and brow. he didn't want to take her past her parent's bodies. Pointing his wand skyward. He whispered a few small words of comfort. His heart sank when he saw the fear and anguish in her eye s. just a few minutes before Aurors appeared in the backyard to d eal with the scene. he shouted "Morsmordre!" A green light shot out and sparkled f or a moment before a gigantic skull with a snake coming out of its mouth appeare d in the blue sky. Nor did he want to take Hermione away from all of this in case they needed some thing later. "Hermione it's Harry! I'm here to help you!" There was no response . and Hermione gestured to the upstair s.. Instinctively Harry dived for cover and looked over at his b ushy haired attacker. "Where are your things. Hermione just no dded. Harry didn't hesitate a moment longer when they apparated awa y from the scene.let's get you out of here./ . stepping back a few paces..chen and noticed a slight depression against the wall that would have gone easil y unnoticed. Harry slowly stood up and approached her. He immediately dodged out of the way of an incoming expelliarmus that nearly nic ked him in the arm. Harry didn't take much time to look around. hoping beyond hope she was still conscious and sti ll breathing. Hermione must be inside. though all things considered it was relatively emp ty. and she stood up as well..he'd rather not deal with the Bobbies r ight now. how are you.. Almos t desperately she dived into Harry's awaiting grasp. Harry tensed up and felt a knot at the bottom of his stomach grow in intensity ." He thought of places he could go. watched it as it flung open.. trying to deal with everything a t once." Harry asked." Harry pointed his wand and silently unlocked the door.. "Don't let her be dead. Clutching her tighter he said. "H-Harry. Harry walked over and knocked on the wall. finding it made of metal and hollow. He had heard of these panic rooms before./ . "Hold on .. He mentally moved the wheel that neede d to turn to open it from the other side and." Harry thought to himself. Harry sighed. "I'm going to apparate./ . Finally deciding on a course of action he grabbed Hermione clos e and apparated away.is that you?" she stammered out. almost forcing himself away she clung to him so tightly." before she could argue they popped out of the room. He hastily threw them in the trunk. Harry didn't regard it much and instead shrunk the trunk and stuck it in o ne of his many pockets. / . Harry embraced her and held himself out for her to cling onto. They reappeared in Hermione's bedroom which appeared virtually untouched." She looked at him widely. and Harry looked at Hermione closely. and looked her in the eyes. "Hermione!" Harry called out. He didn't take the time to gather all of the materials. sl ightly embarrassed by some of the clothing he had to handle. and then summoned a stack of books that were sitting on Hermione's desk." Harry said as calmly as he could.. Hermione herself simply grabbed a small album and tossed it on top of everyt hing. simply grabbing her school trunk and summo ning a few outfits from an open wardrobe. "I'll explain later. "Please god.

Instead she forced a half-smile and simply looked off in the dista nce.Harry and Hermione quickly reappeared just outside a small hotel. there were not many peo ple around. all the while she continued to stare at him. but he needed to get them into the ho tel and dealt with. He had a million thoughts raving through his mind. He had been close today. In l ove? With Hermione? Harry shook his head and tried to get the image out of his m ind.. There was a small glowing from her face. Harry held her hand and began to lead her into the hotel. feeling the warm th and the joy radiating from their faces. almost in shame at the day's event s. I told you she'd find me. at the very end.. for the first time he examined it closer. He simply wondered when it was that he had noticed Hermione in this way. After getting them a small room for the night. There was only one instance in his long history. Could he? The sound of a door opening shook Harry from his internal thoughts and he glance d up at the bathroom door. Harry hadn't had time to consider it but with the rush of new informati on and events that had transpired. prepared to obliviate any muggles who happened to be wan dering by. unshrinking them as he did. and the feelings of helplessness nearly ripped him to shreds. Love. As he sat on the train and contemplated the pictures. but it did n't come out. something he reminded himself he needed to do as soon as possible as well. her hair hanging loose and her eyes a bloodshot red. He didn't notice how desperately she clung to him. She frantically looked around but her eyes quickl y locked into Harry's Harry could feel the fright radiating off of her in palpab le waves. all too close at losing her. but in the small village he had apparated to. "Hedwig found me. something light and certainly much more ple asurable than many of his own personal feelings had been in his life. He thought hard to remember a time when he had actually felt the feeling before. and she meant more to him than probably anyone still alive. and he st ruggled to claim it. A few more minutes and if they had fo und her then. Sheathing his wand he held his hand over Hermione's forehead and whi spered a few words that she couldn't understand. as his best friend in the world. and her cuts healed. but he couldn't be in love with her. He cou ldn't put his finger on it but something was different between the two of them. bringing her eyes directly into con tact with his. She sat down and hung her head. Harry scanned the area with his wand. It was when Hagrid had given him the album of his parents. Harry removed his and Hermione's trunk and set them off to the side. the one person he really couldn't live without. It was all encapsulated in a word tha t brought Harry's breath to a standstill. Harry leaned forward and lifted her chin. and H arry could tell that she had been crying. Sighing he stood up and helped lead he r to her bed. . far back i n first year." Hermione tried to laugh. She was clad in a simple red robe that the slightly upscal e hotel provided for usage. Hermione stumbled in. Hermione had gon e in to take a shower. Circles were starting to form around her eyes.Harry didn't dwell on the idea. It was an odd feeling to be certain. "H-how did you know?" Harry looked at her and managed as much of a grin as he co uld. Harry transfigured his clothes without a thought and did the same for Hermione. Harry looked outside at the waning sunlight of the dusk and ga ve a deep sigh. Sure he cared for her. It was not something he wanted to remind himself of. He dismissed the thought almost as immediately as it came to the forefront. some kind of unspoken bond that had formed between them that ran deeper than fri endship.

" her voice caught and she leaned forward. "Th---thank you Harry.. She looked at him oddly. Hermione just sat back as she always did. Dumbledore had promised her parents that he would protect them. I would never consider you a burden. Someho w Hedwig and Thoth flew down to the window and I scribbled that note to you. like they were rotting pieces of meat. I promise." They both sat their a moment. "We sat down to have some tea. and he felt a rush of shame cross his face..." she asked. She breathed deeply. "They were going to do that to me when.I got my wand out and trie d to stun them but./ .."Hermione. I summoned my wand but I knew I was n o match for them. ." She nearly screamed at this and Harry leaned forward and embraced her.. till nearly 1 in the morning." she stopped him at that and took a deep breath. and I will always be there for you. who lifted her chin and stared directly into her e yes.." Harry offered a small smile which Hermione returne d." she was cut off by Harry.I don't know what. Don't ever think that way. a hin . letting her cry int o his shoulder./ . He absorbed the memory in his mind and his face darkened. You have always been there for me through everything. I didn't e ven know those curses existed yesterday but. holding back tears. Why ha d no one come he continuously asked himself." she began. her eyes awash with the memory replay ing itself in the back of her mind.." he trailed off and caught a slig ht smile on her face. "I want to say the pain will go away but." The tears were flowing freely from her eyes. "They jus t sat their and tortured them. "I know I probably should have stunned them but... if you don't want to talk abou t it now then. "Well. Her eyes glaze d over slightly as she recounted the tale. "I know you have your own problems and shouldn't have worried about me but. The sound of Hermione's cries dropping to whimpers and short sobs brought him back as he pushed away from her and allowed her to continue. She regarded his features for a moment before she tugged on the slight goatee h e was sporting.. Harry mentally rolled his eyes.. I'm sorry... She said nothing though and let him explain his tale. up to and including the destruction of the death eaters at the Granger residence. You were the only person I thought to call. unsure of how to continue. "Listen to me Hermione.. that's a long story." Her head hung low again and she snicke red. before Harry had finished h is tale.. But I just waved my hands and the air just became pitch black.. almost desperately trying to change the subject." he began. who was quickly rising up on his list of worthless asshol es in his opinion. And then they killed them. "Look.. So I ran to the panic room and hid there till you came./ It took several hours. "They disarmed me and used the..it was like this rush of anger and power that came out of nowhere.. taking in all of the inform ation and processing it bit by bit..so why hadn't anyone? His face contorted more with anger at the old man. "Where did this come from. Harry put a reas suring hand on her shoulder and she continued. "When those three apparated right into our l iving room.. cruciatus on my parents.." he r eyes squinted a bit.. I didn't even have time to react I mean." Harry sat back and dropped on his bed. / . "You saved me didn't you? You stopped them from hurting anyone else didn't you?" Harry was going to protest but Hermione stopped him. mindlessly casting a silencing charm on the door which drew an eyebrow from Hermione. He had nearly forgotten in all the ruckus.I don't know what came over me . laughing all the time and all I could do was watc h.

. I need to hel p you. A nd your mother! Why didn't he say anything to you?" Harry just shook his head. He pulled me and Ron aside and said we shoul dn't write to you this summer.born to those who have thrice defied him. "There's a lot he didn't tell me.." Harry repeated. and Hermione leaned forward." The finality i n her voice made it so that Harry couldn't argue the point anymore. neither one moving." He breathed deeply as he continued. "The one with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord approaches. Harry c ould hear Hermione's breathing even out and he looked down. " Just before I was born. "a seer made a prophecy. Hermione saw this and asked him what it wa s. his fist clenching slightly at what el se Dumbledore had failed to tell him.. Jesus Harry I'm sor ry for burdening you with this.. Hermione bit her bottom lip an d trembled. confused." He stopped short at the last statement." he suddenly remembered. I mean. She neede d to know about the prophecy.. power blocks aren't all that uncommon for par ticularly gifted magical children but.. you will never be a burden to me. as he recalled t he prophecy in his mind." Hermione replied." Harry simply nodded." Harry pulled her close again and let her rest h er head on his shoulder.and the Dark Lord will mark him as his equal. "'Mione. "What made you say th at.. but he will have power the Dark Lord knows not.and eit her must die at the hand of the other for neither can live while the other survi ves." She shook her head and a small bit of anger crossed her face.. "Listen to me ranting on and you have all this to deal with. and her eyes went wide." she waved her hand and tried to collect herself. it's alright. That you'd want to be left alone. . "But that means that you. "but it was destroyed at the Ministry. "I told you.... But I knew that was just rubbish. finding her asleep. You did what was necessary.." "I know." he trailed off.... Not with them.. "Except one other person heard it in its entirety. in his pensieve. "Harry. Dumbledore... Tears started to fall down her face again. Hermione mouthed part of it to hersel f.stun ning them won't work. and he knew he could trust her more than anyone. I don't know why he didn't tell me but. and was eternally thankful that she didn't catch it. and Harry walked back nex t to her." He st ood up and started pacing back and forth across the small room.. I can live with this. born as the seventh month dies.memory blocks? And that thing with your uncle? It doesn't make sense. something followed by Harry.the one with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord will be born as the seven th month dies. The person the prophecy was m ade to.he must have known! From w hat you tell me it was common knowledge that your father underwent the ritual." "None of it makes sense. stopping his pacing and sitting down on a smal l desk chair next to a television cabinet.. Then the thing on the train." he continued. "It was just before we left school.t of both sorrow and anger lying just beneath her gentle features. Harry grumbled a bit. "He definitely p laced those curses on you." Sh e cringed slightly as she remembered that day. that you would go crazy cooped up there all by yourself. They sat there for a long time.. Hermione sat back up and went through the rest of the information.. urging him to continue." she trailed off and the anger grew. He showed it to me after the battle. "You said we shouldn't trust him. "Why didn't Dumbledore tell you all of this? I mean. I want to help you.

Dumbledore had planne d on relaxing for a couple weeks or so before attending another session of the W izengamot. The boy had proven to be surprisingly thick-headed when it came to the obvious at times.. He then followed suit. For them not to work meant that something was wr ong with him. Finding that unchanged. and Albus could always obliviate the know ledge of what had happened from his mind. The first conclusion that popped into his head was unthinkable. that Harry might get wise to his plans. an d laid down in the other bed. bathed in the moonlight seeping from the open window. Dumbledore sat down and sorted through some papers. He shook his head in surpris e and tried to concentrate. He knew th at one day this might happen. Rushing from his private quarters he entered into his o ffice. The devices in his office were designed to monitor the numerous wards and protections that s urrounded the young Mr. Headmaster I understand your concerns. I won't be leaving here without an escort. buzzing. He fumbled around in a desk drawer for a moment s earching for something. It was going to be a simple. Chapter 6: The Best Laid Plans It was not a good day to be Albus Dumbledore. the boy was stil l alive. more f righteningly. Whatever had happened. and then settling in to his summer plans of watching over young Harry and running the Order of the Phoenix.. But this w as not beyond salvagable yet. none of th em were working. He of course had first checked on Harry's lifestone. puffing and whirring that had been h is constant companion for many years had stopped and the room was a deadly silen ce. It wasn't like it would be the first time he had done it. transfiguring his clothes again into more appropriate nighttime attire.. checking a few of the instruments that had been repaired since Hurricane Harry had blown through a few weeks earlier. and breathed a sigh of relief when he pulled out a small malachite stone that glowed with power.He smiled at the thought of her falling asleep in his arms. Before turning out the lights he looked at her aga in. rudimentary summer as far as he was concerned. Waving his wand he shut off the lights and drifted off into as peaceful a sleep as he c ould manage. All the clicking. Whatever had happened. I really have nowhere else to go now anyway. Dumbledore had a grim look wash over his face. As gently as he coul d he picked her up and laid her gently on the bed next to him. he came to an al most equally horrific conclusion. After the train with the students had left for the summer. And so it was quite to his surprise when he was disturbed from a mid-afternoon n ap by a rather loud bang that came from his office. He came upon a small piece o f parchment that he had received the afternoon previous and re-read it again.which would have been destroyed had he been killed. Quickly his eyes went wide as he realized what could cause such a loud bang. Fear onc e again came over the face of Dumbledore for this meant two things for certain: that Harry was no longer at the safety of his aunt and uncle's house and. he was no longer under Dumbledore's supervision and control.. I just hope I can get to the Burrow as soon . Albus closed his eyes and counted to ten.it had taken away those wards at the same time. His next thoughts were to try and determine what else had happened. and he smiled. To his eternal surprise. Potter. attempting to calm himself.

. For his part../ .. Harry Of course Dumbledore had no intention on sending the boy to the Burrow. leaned forward and attempted to calm him. But. He had spent the better part of a day trying to fix it. Albus considered the word "Escort" for a moment. No. "Are you.and he had to r eset the status quo... Arthur was quickly becoming a bit of a nuisance to have t o deal with. About an hour after the train had left Hogsmeade he had heard a slight disturbance in one of the protections on the boy. probably one of the closest to him. Then. Remus Lupin..he had to get rid of whateve r the nonsense was that had spurred this on in the first place. He was simply going to reapply the ward at a later date./ . She got up to her feet. / . .. In a rush his Inner Circle . Voldemort sat on his black and red throne. her eyes awash in fear at the display. it was indeed not a good day to be Albus Dumbledore. and the young Ronald was starting to ask too many questions. and attempted t o offer Lord Voldemort comfort.some otherworldly magic was driving back the tendrils of his mind and it was causing him great pain. stormed into the throne room. gr abbing a quill as he did so. Hadn't he? The gears in Dumbledore's mind came to a slow conclusion. and he had assumed that Harry had done something when he broke the monitoring devices to disrupt the ward. with none of her usual sarcastic singsong voice that she u sed when tormenting others. nervous. and a red bolt of energy struck Bellatrix. Screams of discomfort and pain as their Dark Lord writhed in slight agony. it stopped. He had to find Harry. or what was left of them anyway.. but he could always speed things along in that d epartment should he choose to." she asked. had been kept off the guard watch for that expressed purpose . he knew none of the Order membe rs would help out Harry without express instructions from him. Finally Bellatrix Lestrange. The other people whom Harry could except as escorts were his aunt and uncle. The bo y's relationship with the youngest hadn't even stepped forward to the point wher e the headmaster would approve. Molly was getting more and more nervous ab out the promised plan. but had eventually given up. just as sudd enly as the pain had come. holding his head as a m assive migraine was settling over him./ They could hear the screams emitting from the throne room. piecing together certa in events from the day previous and it all came back to him in a rush..as possible. None of the Death Eaters dared approach the Dark Lord.. breathin ..maybe someone else had actually. The only one who would. for fear of being killed for their insolence. Some force. at least not till the very end of the summer. He grumbled to himself about meddlesome kids and some such things and sat down at his desk. "My Lord. sending her spinning off the throne and halfway across the lit hall. a nd Dumbledore had seen to it that that would never happen. Dumbledore frowned as he realized that someone must have used a cursebreaking sp ell on Harry and lifted that particular protection inadvertantly." "LEAVE ME ALONE!" Voldemort screamed. The Dark Lord sat on his throne.

but had dismisse d it equally." he asked as calmly as could be expected for a time like this. I even went down Knockturn a couple of times j ust to be thorough." In truth Dumbledore had considered such a move on Harry's part. Albus hung his head in frsutration slightly when he heard a roar coming from the fireplace . firing a cruciatus at the blonde haired man that had arrived. For all he knew the boy could have just gone a shopping spree at the Quidditch store. One thing had not gone wrong with his plan. and in an instant his wand was out. Mundungus Fletcher was simply sitting in a chair./ . And I saw nothin!" Alastor continued to scowl at the headmas ter.Harry had far too man y connections in the wizarding world to simply disappear. "never appear before me u nannounced again. his good eye fiercely blinking at his irksome failure." Caldwell replied. shaking off her robes as she did." Prodmore interrupted. "Leave me. not saying much of anything." Tonks muttered to herself before turning to Dumbledore. Moody stopped for a moment and took a swig from his hip flask. "Did you find anything in Diagon Alley?" "I told you already Albus." "A thousand pardons my lord. slowly contemplating everything. A pop ping sound in front of him caused him to reopen his eyes. Shaking his head. Bellatrix slowly pressed forward." The frightened Death Eaters bowed and did as they were told. "And summon Caliban to me as so on as he arrives. He grumbled under his breath a s he replaced the flask and turned towards Dumbledore with his twinkling eyes re garding him. his face curled into a scowl and his mechanica l eye rapidly swaying to and fro to take in everything around him. his head hung low." / . "Wotcher . The main focus of the room was on Alastor Moody. The boy's godfather did just die. "Tell us again Alastor. "But I have a message to deliver to you./ Dumbledore sat in his office. pretty certain in h is own mind that he had in fact gone there. He looked up and saw a pink-haired Auror come stumbling outwards. As soon as he was alone. before he spoke again./ ." he finally stated. as he clunked back and forth ac ross the room in a pacing motion. But that didn't explain why Moody couldn't find him. Voldemort rubbed his eyes and held onto his head. after the verbal thrashing that Dumbledore had given him for letting Harry slip by unn oticed. kneeling both in pain and for fo rgiveness.. he r eitterated said suspicions to Prodmore. staring at the three men who were gathered around him.g audibly and sweat dripping down his brow. "I went up and down that alley a hundred times. "He might have just hightailed it out of Brit ain for all we know.. Dumbledore stroked h is beard thoughtfully. finally standing up from the small chair he had conjured there. "It's obvious that's where the boy went. "Take that as a lesson Caldwell." the ex-Auror screamed in frustration." Voldemort commanded. What had spurred him to make said jo urney was beyond Dumbledore's grasp at this point. silencing him for the moment. His snake-like nostrils flared open and shut rapidly. approaching cautiously with wide looks on their faces. Afte r several seconds he relinquished the curse." Voldemort commanded in a deep growl. "What makes you so certain. as did the other Death Eater s. contemplating everything that ha d happened. "I hate floos. Sturgis Prodmore was also sitting back.

"If he was there Molly would have notified me immediately." Tonks sheepishly replied..sometimes it's hard with thos e amber eyes of his and. Getting Lupin involved was just asking for trouble. Have you checked on the tracking charms I asked you for. "The important th ing is that we try to find Harry and get him back to his relatives before we los e him for good. "The victims were the parent's of one of y our students. nagging against his conscious. to tr y and hold him at bay for the time being at least until the prophecy was fulfill ed." Albus raised an eyebrow at this and in the bac k of his mind... "Very well. "He's nowhere in sigh t.. We simply can't have him gallavanting around unprotected.. "Kingsley. observing the floating head of one Kingsley Shacklebolt. taking an offered seat from Prodmore. "I know you want to keep Remus out of the loop but. Dumbledore shook his head.. This was the last thi ng he needed.. his eye turning slightly toward the ancient wizard." she trailed off as she s aw Dumbledore close his eyes and begin to rub his temples.. Now things were really starting to spiral out of control. Actually it might not be a bad idea to check up on them. his face immediatel y turning pale. guilt ridden o n her face. Shaking his head he nodded to the Auror who continued. "Look. Dumbledore had placed Tonk s with Remus to try and encourage the man to seek a life outside of Harry. "Ah Tonks.good to see you.." Dumbledore replied. "There was a Death Eater attack this afternoon." "I forgive you Nymphadora.Professor. "There's something strange about this attack though. Excusi ng himself he walked over to the fireplace and leaned in. never really letting her eyes venture directly at Dumb ledore..." She took another deep breath and let some of the stress of the day ease out. leaning her head down again. "in Ke nsington. "We?" Tonks froze up at this as she quickly turned to Dumbledore." she greeted." Albus' throat closed up. Dumbledore' s thought process was interrupted again by the flash of green flames from his fi replace and this time the voice of a familiar Auror speaking out for him." Or at least he hoped she would. She flinched at her given name. "Fancy you calling at a time like th is. I'll floo to your office immediately and we can apparate to the scen .. Albus raised an eyebrow at this.Hermione Granger." Albus said. If he was there or if he was hiding we certainly couldn't find him. offering the best smile he could . his promise to protect her and her family echoed firmly.some things that won't be included in the official report.. Have you checked Grimmauld?" Dumbledore clasped his hands together. "I don't suppose you mentioned why we were looking for Harry did you?"she slowly nodded and the circular motion on Dumbledore's temples increased slightly. hoping for the best." His throat reopened fully." she answered. "I'm sorry Professor. "What's wrong?" Albus asked.Remus knows that house better than I do and." Albus nodded slightly and raised his eyebrow a gain.. "Yes." The Auror nodded b ut his face was more than grim. feigning happiness. It wouldn't do to have a werewolf who could go stark raving mad at a moment' s notice in charge of the savior of the wizarding world. but simply nodded in return." "Did you check with the Weasley's Albus?" Moody asked.

and his face was heavily scarred from battles long since over with. For heaven's sakes don't let him go looki ng for the boy. . Tell him. "You have done well Caliban. It was into this environment that the large elm doors swung ope n and a large man came stalking through.. Dumbled ore turned around and noticed the four people in the room with him./ There was a palpable silence in the Great Hall of Riddle Manor. "Mundungus. go back to HQ and keep Remus there." he began in a whispered tone. taking ffered from a cowering House Elf. The old house ha d been renovated to look more like a castle fortress than a large home over the years. de ep blue eyes glistening in the torchlight. Voldemort did Caliban. "Take Sturgis and try Diagon Alley again." Voldemort grabbed r Caliban to sit in. especially in front of t he Dark Lord. He didn't like talking about his failures. it.he would have had to stop by Gringotts to get money." Caliban replied. Tonk s. but they weren't completely sunk yet. He kept his gaze forward. closing his eyes as he did. "Alastor.." Dumbledore hoped beyond hope he hadn't done anything else while there. Shame at the idea of Hermione Granger being dead barely entered his mind. Please. Voldemort smiled again./ . blood dripping from the end. was c onstantly dark save for the few torches that hung on the supports along the side and was almost constantly filled with a creeping mist that could suck the joy r ight out of you. was Lord Voldemort. I trust yo and stood to h pulled out a p revealing the "The blood traitor Igor Karkaroff is no more. If they could just fin d Harry. The attack on the Grangers entered his mind and he headed off to assess the situ ation.. The Great Hall was almost as large as the one at Hogwarts. His long gray hair flowed behind him as well.. if for no other reason than to match the outer attitudes and inner desire s of its owner. Sitting in it. The wizard obliged. He reached into his robes and ale white arm. Speak with the goblins this time. He turned it palm up. Voldemort regarded the man for a moment before his face let a wry "Ah Caliban. respect having been shown. Dumbledore noted it and filed it away for later use.anything to get him off the trail. The man knee led forward as he approached his master." Kingsley nodded and his head vanished from the fireplace.. check with your connectio ns and see if anyone named Potter had checked into a muggle hotel recently." Caliban grimaced at the mention. Now. Dumbledor e lent against the wall. his eyes never leaving "You might remember the one quarry you never found for me. his face frowning greatly. Dark Mark still burned into the skin. smile escape.. a s orrowful look creeping over her face. / ./ . where a large black throne carved out of onyx and studded with rub ies and other precious gems sat. "You have returned to ur latest prey was. as he made his way forward to the end of the hall.everything would be back to normal soon.e from there. "Well he has gone missing again.. As the four of them scattered to conduct their assignments.dealt with?" Caliban looked up at his master is feet." Dumbledore began to bark out orders before anyone could say anything. though at this man's side was a small belt that had a dagger sheath a t the right side.." Tonks nodded." Caliban raised an eyebrow but re mained silent.I have a new mission f his wand and conjured a chair fo a goblet of liquid when it was o the same. Things were rapidly getting beyond his control.. my lord. and threw it to the side. me. His solid black robes billowed at behind him not unlike a certain Hogwarts potio ns master. He hoped the y hadn't overheard much. have a seat. I shall not forget or you.. his voi ce raspy and filled with venom.

something about don't shoot the messenger. She escaped and we went looking for her.and a disembow eling curse on Crabbe." He took a sip of his drink and continued.. If it had been any other person Caliban would have told him he was wasting his time with a fifteen year old boy.. sense what h e is thinking. "However today I was racked by a great pain in my head ." Caldwell continued. "AVADA KEDAVRA!" The killing curse shot out of his wand quickly and suddenly." The anger hidden in his voice even made Caliban pause. " He paused." Hate qu ickly flashed over his features...other man.and gave me a message for my master. "CRUCIO!" The jagged red bolt of energy struck Caldwell square in the chest.. and in turn he can feel my emotions and sense my presence." he commanded... "Bring me Caldwell. "There is more. If it had be en any other person Caliban likely wouldn't have given them the time of day.I know t he muggles have a saying. I can sense him. "Tell our guest the story you told me." Caliban replied. But this wasn't any other person." Voldemort hissed. Caliban had met Jonas Caldwell once o r twice. "Thank you Jonas. Caldwell's beaten violet eyes gazed up at the Dark Lord and at Caliban." Caliban scowled at the disrespect f or his master. "Caldwell. Caliban nodded and sat back down. still breathing heavily...alive.." he began. No magic that th e boy or his worthless protectors possess would be able to destroy the link utte rly." He pa used and closed his eyes. and could not sense him.. "We killed some pa rents of a mudblood friend of Potter's. and that he would not toler ate my master's temper tantrums any longer. "I shall find th is Harry Potter and bring him before you. "Finish the tale!" he command ed. If I cannot torture him thr ough our shared minds. and was frankly unimpressed with the posturing Death Eater." He opened his eyes again. "Would you like to hear a story Caliban?" Not waiting for an answ er he motioned for another Death Eater standing there to come forward. his voice shak y as he figured what was coming as soon as his tale was over. It seems that the curse that resulted in my unfortunate absence some f ourteen years ago had an interesting after effect. the piercing red gaze glanci ng out at no one in particular.and you tell it so well.. He left me alive. Caliban just continuing to liste n.. The link had been destroyed. his face slightly cross. fear outlining each side of them. his throat raw from telling the tale. and the Death Eater obliged quickly. "Very well my lord. but surprisingly Voldemort had a smile on his face. A side door was opened and a half-bloodied man in tattered robes was thrown at t he feet of the Dark Lord and his serveant. engulfing Caldwell in its cold lifeless embrace.. "Now. then I shall torture him in person."For quite some time now I have been aware of a special bond between my enemy an d myself. That was a wonderful story. "We founds this. H e said that the true heir of Slytherin had returned. "When we came back downstairs. and the younger Death Eater screamed in agony as he withered away under its power. as if deep in thought. . He used a flesh eating curse on Goyle. "I want you to find him Caliban and bring him to me. When it had subsided I felt out for young Harry.. "This is ancient magic at work.." "We---we were sent on a raid to a house in Kensington. setting his goblet aside." He pick ed up his wand and tapped it on his chin." He motioned to take his leave but Voldemort lowered his hand. Voldemort grimaced at him and pulled out his wand." Voldemort replied. After several seconds Voldemort removed the curse.

" came the curt reply from the younger Malfoy. Voldemort simply replaced his wand and looked back to Caliban. "I shall do as you ask. "I will show you exactly th e respect you derserve. "I want you to find this. You will learn the ruthl . To me. "They tell me you're a tracker. his eyes glazed over with the sweet release of death." Voldemort began. "They say you're no better than the Dark Lor d's pet bloodhound." Voldemort smiled and almost let out a slight laugh. "I am heir to one of the most respected and feared pureblood families in the world." he spat out.Caldwell slumped forward. Do you understand me young dragon." Draco began. Find him and bring him be fore me. I don't give a damn who your fath er is or who the hell you think you are. a bit out of breath from the harried pace that his counterpart kept up with." He turned back to Malfoy. H is gray eyes stared ahead. He too knel t down in front of his master as Caliban stood up to take him in. with his wand point ed firmly at the prodigal son's quickly gulping throat. for it truly does.. Neither spoke to one another for several minutes as they headed out of the Great Hall and down a flight of stairs to a small armory. slowly stalking behind Caliban who did not halt his search to listen. He is a little we t behind the ears but our young dragon has the makings of a superb Death Eater. fol lowed by a slight laughter. A shor ter. "This is Draco Malfoy Caliban. Voldemort nodded to them both and waved his hand in dismissal.. "I shall do as you ask. Caliban threw open the door s and began to search about the table for various items." "Yes my lord. his telltale sneer quickly drawing ac ross his face. you're nothing but a sniveling w help who has a long way to go before you earn any of my respect." Voldemort said as he motioned off to the side. None of them shall ever question the power of Lord Vol demort again. You shall have them both before you. Caliban maintained his smile. in awe of everything going on before him. before kneeling down before his m aster. continuing to hold the boy with unseen for ce to the wall.. who kept in a kneeling p osition. He shut the doors and looked upon the man." Malfoy demanded to know. Greatest of the Founders Four. fully clad Death Eater came forward." Malfoy snickered. "There is one more thing. I want you to take him under your capable wing on this mission. but his ov erall countenance took on a much more sinister aura. "That is to say." Caliban nodded and stood." Caliban gazed down at the boy and simply nodde d to his master. "In my care you will learn everything you need to know. He kept his nose firmly planted up in the air. "You will follow this man's orders as if your life depended on it. "Lucius' son.. "Of course you will Caliban. thought he looked to only be a teen.imposter heir of Slytherin. Malfoy tottering closely behi nd trying to keep up. Malfoy entered in slowl y. and they shall writ he in agony at your feet. "Why are you laughing." Voldemort smiled again. Draco's eyes went wide a nd fear quickly etched across his face.none at all. Caliban backed away slowly from Volde mort before turning and taking his dramatic leave. Show what is req uired of those who take my mark." Caliban looked up and stared at Ma lfoy out of the corner of his eye. In no short order Caliban had Draco pinned against the wall. so that I may show him the true power of Salazar Slytherin. trying to pry himself under the skin of his new mentor. A small smile appeared on the man's face. I expect you t o show me the respect that is mine by right.

"You're nothing but a worthless worm Malfoy. landing in a heap on the floor in front of a table. Kingsley shook his head and set aside the man's file. they're different from your regular robes.and I can be very creative with my curses./ Kingsley Shacklebolt sat at his desk. his face equally drawn.. Caliban was one of the most ferocious Death Eaters that the Dark Lord had at his disposal. locking the door as he went . Caliban de Montesquieu. The method of his murder led to only one c onclusion. tryi ng to sound as worried as possible. capable seemingly of hunting down anyone anywhere. numerou s they might be. his left arm cut off. He was a tracker. Follow my instructions and you shall be rewarded. No one even knew his real name. Apparently Igor Karkaroff." Dumbledore replied. You aren't worthy of the name Death Eater. he spared no expense of his wrath..I thought you'd have more backbone than your father. Caliban stormed out of the room. Were it not for the Dark Lord's personal interest in your training." Dumbledore nodded and in no short order . Shacklebolt stood up and shook the man's hand. L ittle was known about the man other than he emerged as one of the first follower s of the Dark Lord during the first war... and when he was instructed to kill someone. his face drawn and his eyes devoid of their characteristic twinkle. / . The Dark Lord grants me wide ber ths on these training exercises." Kingsley replied. He had to keep his mind clear for D umbledore. letting the dread settle over Malfoy a little lon ger. Your raw talents. causing Dumbledore to look at him suspiciousl y. and until they are you are more of a l iability to me than anything.essness and the cunning necessary to be a Death Eater.by not being punished. "Put these on./ ." Before Draco could qu estion him further. "I think I can help with that. former headmaster of th e Drumstrang Institute and former Death Eater had been found dead. As if on cue the small fireplace inside his office lit up with a gree n hue and Dumbledore came out of the flames.." He let this linger for a moment.. I would just as soon leave you abandoned at the roadside. his body wash ed up on shore." Caliban waved his wand fo rward and Malfoy shot from the wall. It had been thought he might have been a friend of the Dark Lord before he became Volde mort. who tilted his head sid eways./ ." Dra co was quickly getting more and more fearful of the man. Any news on. It wouldn't do to dwell on such horrific thoughts at a time like this." Dumbledore shook his head. "He's out there on his own. Caliban sheathed his wand and handed a bundle of clot hing to Malfoy. We have to find him soon. and unless you do exactly as I say you never will be. "Let's go to the scene. The ho use is 15 Harold Street in Kensington. are as of yet unrefined. . "We've seen neither hide nor hair of the boy Kingsley. "Thank you for coming Albus. Once he had finished. "What's the matter Malfoy? No snide comebacks? No trademark Malfoy sneer? Pity." Kingsley frowned again. patiently looking over some paperwork that had just been handed to him.. but this like many other legends of Voldemort's past was pure speculation at best. A sniveling coward who will go to t he other side whenever it suits him.

opening the slightly ajar d oor all the way. "So far this seems in line with your tale Kingsley. though i n truth he already knew what the answer was. a man he recognized as Crabbe the elder. Seems that once Miss Granger made her way to the panic room she got a message out. far as we know." He pointed to the two Death Eaters. alive but under a deep sleeping charm. and the one who did this. They arrived in front of the abandoned house near sundown. Dumbledore stepped inside and immediately stopped." "The problem is..they had both apparated out of the office. "We actually found Caldwell here. Off in the dis tance were the bones and flesh of what Dumbledore assumed to be a death eater gi ven the state of his robes. Miss Granger apparently also got to her things and her whereabouts are currently unknown. causing one of them. stepping further in and making sure to avoid the Granger's bodies. slowly walking up to the door. The smell was rather overwhelming.. The man closer to him. to kill the other two. Miss Granger attempted to fight back but was disarmed. Obviously he hadn't lasted very long there. Regardless whoever got the message was the one who app arated here. "But I have my own suspicions about that I'll get to in a moment." Kingsley admitted." Kingsley began. Dumbledore noticed ho w in place it looked with the rest of the neighborhood. Then she used some bit of accidental magic t o get away and hide in one of those panic rooms some muggle houses have. The Dea th Eaters then argued amongst themselves at the scene. Though Dumbledore had only met them once or twice. they seemed to be highly sensible people. and sensed the muggle re pelling charms around the house proper that would turn people away from its gaze so that they wouldn't notice the partially unhinged door." Kingsley replied. their faces were carved statues of someone who had been suffering under the cruc iatus. "You don't know the half of it. and made to wat ch her parents tortured and killed.a pity it had gone for naught. Caldwell ha d once been a star student at Hogwarts. He co uld easily ascertain that they had been tortured and killed as Kingsley stated. "Ok. and Dumbledore waved his wand. Jona s Caldwell. Dead in front of him were the corpses of the Granger parents. bef ore firing up the dark mark and apparating out. and let out a deep sigh. "What makes you think that someone else killed Crabbe and Goyle?" . He glanced over and internally grimaced at the next scene. Gregory Goyle Sr. "that there's more to it then the official r eport. "I assume the reality of it is far more interesting?" Dumbledore asked." "A message?" Albus' mind was working quickly to try and figure all this out. "Frankly I don't unde rstand what the problem is." Kingsley stopped as t hey approached the door. but kept saying something about delivering a message to his master .. was also very much decea sed." Kingsley responded." Dumbledore stated. "To Whom?" "We aren't certain.. his intestines having spilled out halfway from his abdomen onto the floor. But there's a bit more there. "The first part happened just like I told you. He had his memory wiped. and Vincent Crabbe Sr. casting a char m to make it smell faintly of blueberries.somehow. He managed to get away.. "The official story is that three death eaters apparated into the living room of Muggle-born witch Hermione Granger." Dumbledore nodded with a frown.

.the of ficial report is just as good for now." he explained. apparating back to the Aurors office. He was content to simply sit there for hours. placing small devices on the four bodies in the room. We checked her room too. The Panic Roo m was open when we got here so she did leave. . an d then left again." They both walked outside. Perhaps it was the Hufflepuff he had g ained bringing out his loyalty to her. . "I don't think we should dwell on this for too long Kingsley. We can't have a vigilante on our hands killing Death Eaters on his own whim.. unaware of the instant apparitions going on behind them by the Magic Reversal Department." "It vanished. After about a half hour of fitful sleep he g ave up and simply sat on the edge of his bed. no doubt in t he grips of a nightmare about her parents. Dumbledore paced slowly through t he living room." "And Miss Granger?" "We think she left with this mystery person or ran off on her own.before his eyes glazed over from the memory charm being placed on him almost immediately.. Occasionally she would start to toss and turn. The bird then w ent to just outside Diagon Alley in muggle London." "Remember those tracking charms you wanted on the boy's owl?" Dumbledore nodded. "This will mark them for pickup r elatively soon." Dumbledore nodded and said nothing else. "I wanted you to see the scene first hand." Dumbledore turned astounded."Becuase we checked their wands. watching the slow rise and fall of Hermione's chest. And we have to find him. "If Harry did this I have to know . None of them fired off any spells of that type. Harry didn't really understand what spurred on this peaceful watch that he maintained over his friend. Harry liked to think it was just because. There's only a few things that could erase the Ministry's tracking of an owl. stayed for a while. keeping his distance from the Auror as he se emed to stare off into nothing. Protecting her." Kingsley replied. Or his inner Ravenclaw allowing him to br ing inner tranquility to the tortured mind. "Albus--I think Harry might have done this. watching over h er. sounding very grim..and Dumbledore couldn't think of any viable ones right now. his mind uneasy with what was happening. Kingsley began to shake his head and Dumbledore grabbed him by the cuff of his robes.. "Albus. Almost imm ediately after arriving the owl flew here. to this house. Kingsley sighed and walked back to his friend. "Thank you old friend. Chapter 7: Potter Manor Harry didn't sleep much that night.." Dumbledore nodded and placed a hand on his friend's sho ulder. He had already arrived at his conclusion." Kingsley stared at him blankly for a mom ent. The time in which it left almost directly coincides with the time that the attack would have taken place near as we can tell. and that seemed to ease her anguish and allow her to dr ift back to sleep." Albus said. Looking at it subjectively. even if heart didn't want to believe it. We even think that this mystery person was the one who sent up the Dark Mark. where suddenly it vanished. Shacklebolt held up for a second. "Well. they took affect the minute the bird arrived at Harry's home. After all. Her schoo l trunk and several books are gone.. leaving 15 Harold Stree t in the first real peace it had seen in quite sometime.. motioning for Kingsley to leave. Kingsley simply nodded. Harry would lean forward and whisper comforting words to her.

" He looked up at the young girl. and his breath took a pause.."Thank you 'Mione. He had sent him to live with the Dursley's. As he did. There had been a short time when he had thought tha t something more was developing there. Dumbledore. Harry didn't question it however.At some point Harry did manage to nod off slightly. Everything circled around his in his mind a s he came to one final conclusion. Harry glanced down at what she was holding. he simply looked at its cover and mu ttered. Or shots o f the Leaving Feast in 1st year. rapidly inhaling and exhaling the relief his pent up frustration an d anger.Harry could hear a slight crack in the mirror of the bathro om as he considered everything. He didn't want to lo se Ron as a friend. Closing the album. enjoying each other's company. Add to those three immutable facts the recent discoveries of those damnable curs es on his soul and.. only to settle on the g irl sitting in a chair against a window. He stood in the steam filled room for seve ral minutes. colored red and gold Harry noted. but he hoped that they would accept it. rapidly trying t o dry her eyes. The book was constructed from a hard leather binding. he leaned forward and let out a long deep breath. He was at least partly responsible for his godfather's death. for when he awoke Hermione's bed was empty.. she opened the book. She looked up at him. It was so bloody obvious now. His eyes crossed the picture of Ginny and he too felt a long ing to keep her as a friend. and filled nearly to the brim with photographs from his first 5 years at Hogwarts. I was going to give it to you for your birthday but. but it had passed almost as quickly as th e school year had faded.. She quickly closed the book.. After ." s he trailed off as she handed the book to Harry and allowed him to flip through t he pages. He suspected that Colin had taken many of the pictures. his muscles stiff from the awkward way in which he had slep t. "It's an album I made. but the look he gave her let her know the jig was up. his train of thought took several different directions at on ce... Briefly he had caught a flash of some photos from Hogwarts. but that wouldn't explain his victory at his first Quidditch match ever. and silently forced himself to calm down. The man had sat back with his god damned lemon drops and watched as Harry's life played before him like some symphony. Harry slowly got up. and he slowly took to trying to relax the tension out of his muscles. The gravity of th e situation was beginning to weigh on his mind. Thinking of the old man he had trusted slowly began to make Harry's blood boil a s he pieced everything together. Sirius' Death. His eyes settled on one picture of the DA. As he stood under th e hot water.everything that had happened in his life had been perfectly orchestrated by Dumbledore.. To be certain Harry wasn't entirel y sure how the Weasley's would react to this bit of news given everything that h ad happened to him. and offered a genuine smile. and simply al lowed him to be overtaken by many of the memories. He had allowed Snape to violate him. and his eyes crossed the visage of th e man he considered his brother. The ramifications of his acti ons the day previous. and he slowly padded over to Hermione. and they both stayed there a moment. A symphony written and composed by Albus Dumbledo re. Sighing. The muddled feelings that he had for Hermione. her hands cradling something or other. His eyes quickly darted around the room. Ron Weasley. perhaps for the fir st time as a young woman. After a few moments Harry excused himself to take a shower. Hermione returned it.

The poor girl had been traumatized in way's that Harry didn't possibly understa nd. "Harry. Hermione just stared at him with a raised eyebrow." she asked. Furthermore he knew Hermione would need some new clothes to. The casual way in which Dumbledore seemed to interfere with Harry's life may hav e upset him more than even the actual act. His knowledge of technical matters concerning wizarding law were sorely lacking. recalling the ancest ral knowledge that seemed to be inherent to the ring. "I think I can help you with that. Throwing on an old polo shirt and some jeans." she asked. I mean." he asked.. pocketing her wand again. eying the Potter ring as he did so.. Harry almost chuckled at the irony. "I. but she didn't call him on it. After several seconds. she pulled her wand out o f her pocket and placed it on his ring. namely Voldemort. "Where are we going to stay. and merely motioned for her to perform the requested action.he was certain he could continue without blowing the place up. Lord of the House of Potter. idly running his fingers throug . He shut off the water and used a small charm to dry himself off." he said. Hermione tilted her head s lightly. "Place your wand on my ring. Hermione was still sitting on her bed. He looked down at his hands.. what are you going to do. Harry James Potter. When it was done. The girl needed to do somethi ng besides worry. He thought back to anything that might help him wi th her obvious concern to be left alone again. The conversation with Orlock the day previous and an idea came to his head. do hereby and forever more recognize Hermione Jane Granger as a friend of the House of Potter and shall off er her the safety and protections of my house till such a time when she releases me from this oath. Inwardly he thought for a moment.." Harry didn't answer. trying to allay her latest c oncerns.. he reminded himself he'd have to get a proper mug gle attire to go along with the massive number of wizard's robes he had purchase d..and a place to stay.well I'm still sixteen for a few months. closing the book and looking at him with worry adamant in he r eyes. I can make it so that Dumbledore can't touch us. Hermione kept a solid look on Harry. Harry came out of the bathroom with his mind slightly dazed. And they could still try to take you back to the Dursley's. There was a slight red spark as she did so. Harry held out his hand. "What just happened. Harry let out a deep breath and sat back down on the bed." Hermione flinched at the spite that shone in his voice at the use of the he admaster's name. excepting the ancient oath. Doing so mea nt he was no better than that which the old man claimed to stand against. "I just made you a friend of my house.. Harry could tell she had been crying again. he began to focus on Dumbledore once more. her hair still hanging loose and her eyes still partially puffy and red. I know you're emancipated and every thing but. glancing at the photos. "Harry. but he was certain that underneath it all there was an underlying probl em that they had to confront. wary o f anything out of the ordinary. extendi ng his ring finger." Harry frowned. Who was this man to dictate Harry's l ife? Just because he was considered the greatest sorcerer of all time did not gi ve him the right to interfere so directly in another person's life. to be taken away from safety." The room darkened a little as the ring glowe d with power. So mote it be..

Harry coul d still see the lingering affects of something they needed to talk about lurking at the fringe of her mind. "So." He offered as much of a smile as he could.. I'm kind of eager to get there myself. Hermione seemed apt to not want to talk about it. It was heavily covered with black chrome with orange and grey flame deca ls added along the sides. but simply sat the re. Part of the 16-year-old ki d in him was thrilled to death at the prospect of trying out Sirius' old motorbi ke. Be fore Harry could bring it up she changed the subject again." she managed to whisper again. But first we need to get you some new clothes. trying to sound curiou s. "Harry James Potter.monstrosity?" "It's not a monstrosity. she gave a slight smirk and headed out of the room... Handing Hermione's to her. and got the biggest grin he had on his face on quite a long while. Once that was taken care of he walked with Hermione back behi nd the hotel.. "This. Harry paced around the bike a few moments. and Harry smiled back. Harry paused and simply nodded. For once she d idn't press him on why he had done it. frankly a little embarrassed at how quickly the idea had come to him." he began. He left her aside as he checked out of the hotel. his smile growing wider. one that almost made Harry's heart ache at seeing it. And before you say anything let's just get one thing straight." Harry replied. In mere moments the bike had enlarged to its full-size. The bike appeared to be about 20 or so years old. "Essentially that makes me like your legal guardian. they can't do anything to me.no questions asked.." "No buts. using his Gringott's card to p ay for everything." Harry interjected.. "I need some more muggle clothes anyway so at least you won't be alone." She cast a deep frown. I c an't have a friend of the House of Potter not be treated as a friend of the Hous e of Potter.h his hair. "Yeah. ready to show her his other new gadget. Hermione contempla ted it for a moment. softly touc hing it with his hand. Harry looked up at her. before nodding her head and releasing the same sorrowful sm ile that had been a constant companion on her face. but it shone as if it were bra nd new. feigning hurt at the remark. He silently hoped that she wouldn't rebuke him for the gesture without asking her first. a smirk riding acr oss her face. "So. "Oh but I do." Hermione looked down at herself and frowned. "Thank you.is ." "But.. Once they had reached the back of the hotel he removed the shrun ken bike and tapped his wand on it." He paused for a moment before se tting his new album in his trunk and shrinking both of them. the explanation from the night previous being enough in her mind. Shaking his head Harry managed a small smirk. "But Harry-I don't have any money. Locking me up at the Dursley's would b e like kidnapping... Hermione merely stood back and watched the whole display. And since I'm e mancipated. though the sight of it still filled him with sadness as far as his godfather was concerned. the grin not leaving his face. or how he had done it. That means you are going to go and buy however much you want or nee d. and Harry got his first real up close look at it. are we going to this new house of yours?" she asked. "You ready to go shopping?" Her mione looked at him with her hands firmly placed on her hips.. "You don't honestly expect me to ride that." she scolded him incredulously.

It'll take us to my house. They stopped in a small shopping district. but seeing him like this. parking the bike further away from the rest of the cars and walking the rest of the way. Harry tapped the b ike twice with his wand. It had been months since she had seen the boy she considered to be he r best friend this happy. Finally he spoke up.. "You do know how to ride this thing right?" Harr y glanced back at her with an evil glint in his eye as he revved the engine." After a few seconds he felt the familiar tugging sensation at his navel and was sent sp inning. "Try no t to scream to much. "Next time.one of my houses. "Um-Harry. After about an hour's ride they pulled up to a small town somewhere off the main road. More than a small part of her wanted nothing more than to just curl up into a ball and welcome oblivion. and allowed Harry to get comfo rtable with the signals and braking of the bike. "Harry. she grabbed the helmet that Harry offered and slow ly lowered it over her head. "Only one way to find out. He motioned for Hermione to take hold of it as he clearly intoned. Hermione looked at him oddly as he placed the bike in his pocket temporarily and flushed around for something. A few moments later he and Hermione landed a bit ungracefully on a small patch off the side of a gravel road." She offered a smile to him and headed into the shopping ma ll.. what's going on?" she asked. Harry felt the grin on his face go wide r and wider.a work of art. Harry let out a yell in excitement." she suddenly asked. Harry simply stalked after her. See ing him actually happy.anyway. They started off slowly.. they walked up to the bike. trying to keep as straight a face as possible. The b eginner's learning charms worked wonders however. managed to simply shut out the darkness. Shaking her head. Valerian Scotland. and shrunk it do wn. and at the same time felt the grasp on his waist go tighter and tig hter. Once they made it out onto the open road. and Harry just kept his head down." he barked. if even for onl y a moment. Hermione didn't say a nything for a few seconds. Eventually as the speed became more constant. "So." in truth Harry still wasn't certain how many properties he owned. wh o simply approached it and regarded the look on Harry's face as he made his way around it. after making sure the coast was clear. Harry working out the kinks of learning the bike. As they sped up. H e'd have to check with Griphook soon. .. Harry began to push the bike closer an d closer to its limits. a grin still firml y plastered on his face. but instead of grabbing a helmet. he felt the grip lessen. Several hours later Harry and Hermione emerged from the mall with several bags i n tow.. crossing her arms and tilting her head to t he side slightly. Harry placed the parchment back in his pocket and pulled out his motorbi . and before she could question him further they were off. holding a firm grip without breaking it once. He noticed that Hermione never really let go of his waist at all." He extended his hands again to present the bike to Hermione. and he smiled as he could instinctively feel Hermione relax.did you like the ride?" He g lanced over and could see the corners of Hermione's mouth twitching just a bit a s she fought with her own self-composure. Straddling the bike she sat behind Harry and firmly grasped his waist after he too mounted the bike. 44 Snidget Lane..well. Internally. Picking themselves up and dusting themselv es off." she replied.. He pulled out the slightly crumpled piece of parchment and held it outward.. ignoring the glares he was likely gett ing from behind.. "I'm getting out a portkey. Having shrunken them down to fit into a magically expanded jeans pocket. it made Harry blush slightly. "Potter Manor.

The h ouse was covered on the front by several hedge bushes and ivy was growing up alo ng the reddened brickworks. he handed Hermione's hers and placed his on his head. a bit confused. unshrinking his bike as he did . the gate slamming shut behind them. and saw them smiling equally at him. A pair of small pops in front of the pair brought them back to the here and now. ornate steel gate. It appeared to have at least four stories to it and nearly spanned across his entire field of vision. What good was a house if you were locked out at the front gate. He turned left. The only thing he could see in the distance was the tree lined road leading up to a circle drive. Once they had finished their staring Har ry tried to push open the gate and found it firmly locked. At each corner there was an old style parapet making the house look m ore like a castle than a home. He slowly walked towards the gate and gla nced through the bars. Harry stopped the bike and pushed down the kicks tand. Pulling out the helmets. Here at last he had his home. admiring the beaut y of the home. Harry smiled back. Revving the engine again they took off down the road. He heard a sudden gasp beside him and saw that He rmione had joined him. There was a small hole. parking the bike right in front of the large mahogany doors that were the centerpiece o f a small porch that looked like it had been built on relatively recently compar ed to the rest of the house. They stopped at the end of the circle drive." he explained. It didn't take but a few seconds for Harry a nd Hermione to jump back on the bike sans helmets this time and ride the short d istance up the road to the house. They both stood there for a long time. Frowning h e looked at the iron doors with a raised eyebrow. Small enough for a key of some kind. Dobby and Winky. The manor house was larger than any other house Harry had ever seen. Hermione merely looked around. Harry stood up and remained silent.ke." he said. when something caught his eye. They had replaced the mismatched clothes they had been wearing before with more well-made clothing. Harry slowed as he neared a small inlet street marked as Snidget Lane. near the center of the entrance. The gate was surrounded by a large limestone fence that seemed to go on for seve ral yards in both directions. Behind the gate was a continuation of the gravel r oad they had been traveling on. Harry's eyes flushed over a bit when he swore he saw a quidditch pitch off to the side near the Orchard. f ollowed by a slight vibration along the iron bars. and he hoped that Dobby had been up t o the task he had given to him the night before when Hermione had been asleep. He clenched it into a fist and stuck the Potter ring firmly into the gate hole. each with the Potter family crest e mblazoned on the front. As they drew closer to the house they were even more amazed by its beauty. Harry stepped back a few paces and held out his hand. "The portkey took us 5 miles away. almost instinctively following the road to Potter Manor. taking off his helmet as he did. H . tears slightly forming at the corner's of his eyes. There was a short delay. a small fraction of his mind suddenly gripped with p anic. Harry looked down at his newly hired house elves. "Well that's odd. After this had passed. Harry smirked a little at how much more eager she seemed to be this go arou nd. After traveling a few hundred yards they came to a stop in front of a large. the la tch lifted and the gate swung open. He tried a few more t imes to no avail." Hermione nodded and sat on the b ike. He focused on the address in his mind and saw a building suddenly pop into view. They passed through a small village that couldn't have been more than a few houses and shops wide and as quickly as they had appeared they were replaced by the wild fields of Scotlan d. Off in the corner was a small orchard t hat seemed to be fairly young as opposed to the rest of the local vegetation. or maybe even. "We just need to go a short ways up the road.

and glanced up at Har ry.E." Harry whispered to himself. She motioned for him to open the door . The doors opened to a large entryway that filled nearly two floors.P. and Harry stepped forward and did as he was told. he didn't want to face down Hermione G ranger in full blown S. Hermione got a disappointed look on her face. "Dobby. It was several seconds be fore he felt himself being rushed along by Dobby for the tour of the remainder o f the house. "Incredible.W. but not much else. It took them several hours to tour the whole house." she asked. another tw . As opposed to the elega nt hardwoods and marble floors this was cut out of the brick and mortar that mad e up the outside of the house.ermione simply looked down and stared at them wondering. There were several tables and chairs for studying on the first floor. taking in every inch of it. including the master bedroom that Harry would check out for himself later. As powerful as he might be magically. "House Elves have to be bonded to a witch or wizard in order to stay alive. but allowed Harry to s ee the rest of the house. "Dobby and Winky is bonded to Master Harry Potter Miss Hermy. mode. their feet cautiously moving across the tiled marble floors. promising to visit later. Straigh t above the middle of the room was a wooden scaffold suspended by what appeared to be magical chains. Quickly he grabbed her arm and led her up to the sec ond floor. sans the basement level whic h Harry promised himself he'd explore later.. The second floor had a few bathrooms and guest rooms in it and a rather large lo unge with picture view windows overlooking the Quidditch pitch in the distance. They exited the ballroom and entered a massive library that spanned two floors. formulating reading schedules an d the like for her and him. It also contained an ornate ball room that caused Harry to internally blush as he remembered the d isaster that had been the Yule Ball. Harry managed to blurt out. they gaped in awe at the twin crystal chandeliers hanging above either end of the staircase. no doubt another sitting area for reading and research. Raising his hands in his defense." Dobby said innoce ntly enough. He practically could hear Hermione's mind racing. her looks demanding an answer. She pouted slightly. Next to the ba llroom was the room that caused Hermione's eyes to light up like candles on Chri stmas eve. a formal sitting room and living area. "and Winky? What are you two doing here away from Hogwarts?" Before Harry could interject or explain . This was more than he could have hope for in his wildest dreams. And their breath was instantly knocked out of them. and a smalle r parlor with a breakfast table off the rather large kitchen.. an elegant dining room. He also skipped one other room on purpose till after they had finished the tour. The third floor contained all bedrooms. He kept a wide eyed look plastered on his face as he took in the gigantic room. The 4th floor was complet ely different from the layout of the rest of the castle. There wasn't much up there anyway. and the bo okshelves that lined the wall stretched all the way to the second floor. other than arc hival room with several scrolls that Harry made a note to go through. The first floor contained the entry way. A large wind ing staircase descending from both ends and covered in velvet carpet wrapped aro und the entryway. Her faced softened somewhat however at the e xplanation and she simply nodded her head. As they slowly sauntered into the main entry hall. save for one special moment.and I--I'll pay them whatever they want!" Harry backed away a little b it. a frown suddenly appearing on her face. Dobby decided to answer for him. They're free elves not slaves.

He was truthfully beginning to wonder if this was going to become an overt ritua l of his: sitting and thinking as opposed to actually sleeping. to try and use some of the mind-numbing calm that his Ravenclaw inheritance seemed to have given him. "'Mione. and noticed th e glassy look and shimmering circles forming in the corners of her eyes. Harry and Hermione made t heir way down to the third floor again. Though he was certain enough of wizarding law to think that Dumbl edore couldn't touch him. He stood there stunned for a fraction of a second before he returned the e mbrace. it was simply the fact that he wanted to be around her. . an indication of t he late hour. concerned that he might have overdone it. a bit nervously.didn't have to.. Not to mention that he still wante d to be alert. There didn't need to be any other reas on. instead replaced with a quill and several rolls of parchment. Her bed was covered in the same quilts a nd sheets. He slowly backed away. stopping at the door that Harry had skip ped over previously. There was no computer on the desk.o guest rooms and several storage areas that could be converted into whatever mi ght be necessary at the time. He held firm and waited for Hermi one to look up at him. her cleverness. but he couldn't get his mind in an orderly state enough to begin the process. her brown eyes never wavering from his face.. "What's so special about this room Harry. that maybe this was bri nging too much back to her too fast. leaning forward with his hands nestled underneath his chin. and she just nodded to herself. But more than anything it was simply her presence. He briefly conte mplated meditating a bit. "I know. So it was at that notion that Harry found himself sitting in a large chair in the master bed room. "I wanted to. Satisfied with the tour. His mind was filled with too many avenues and train s of thought to be able to sink into the peaceful world of slumber. this---thi s is too much. Harry let out a deep sigh. Hermione . They stayed th at way a few moments longer. He move d towards her. She then ga zed up at Harry. When Hermione looked in her jaw had dropped. offering a soothing whisper to Hermione who seemed to be on the precipic e of falling into the depression that had gripped her last night. Her room had been set up much like the one in her own home had been." he replied. It wasn't any one thi ng that Harry could pinpoint that made him want to be around her. He silenced his wrenching doubt and settled on another matter entirely. The notion that he was in love with Hermione had replayed itself again and aga in in his head. her eyes sti ll a bit soggy from the previous episode. and simply kept his eyes firmly on the fire. Harry simply got a big grin on his face and opened the door. Harry then turned to Hermione. but with a few changes of course. her inner and outer beauty. He went over everything about her in his mind. Oth er than that much of its original feel had been retained." Hermione asked. before a sigh clued Harry in to Hermione's more sta ble demeanor. staring at the roaring fire. Harry smiled and nodde d to Dobby." Chapter 8: Being There Harry Potter couldn't sleep. He was nearly knocked over by the desperate embrace that came over him seconds l ater. "Harry. and he was pretty certain that no one could find him h ere. The grandfather clock behind him struck twice. though they were magically expanded to cover the much larger bed. and it was making more and more sense the more times it did." he asked..." she trailed off again. who just held his hands together and offered the closest equivalent to a blush a house elf could give. Harry felt a strong protective urge bu ilding up inside of his gut as he stood there. a small part of him still wasn't sure. You didn. stopping in front of the door rather impatiently.

But Bellatrix deserved most of the credit. Sighing. but figured that he would've if he could've. Dumbledore has been using me. I can't tell you where right now. He idly wondered why his godfather hadn't mentioned anything to him in mo re specific detail. Simply looking at the problem from a disengaged perspective allowed Harry to see who the blame truly lay with. Ron. Thinking of Sirius again made him come to another realization. she sent Sirius through the veil in the first place.Harry sincerely hoped that was what it meant to be loved. He chided himself partially when he thought that Sirius might have been to blame himself for taunt ing Bellatrix as well. Harry would probably still be in the dark. I also think he might have done somet . No doubt Dumble dore would have tied that loose end up as well. Looking back on it with new knowledge Harry realized that there was more to that. but he didn't want all of this information to fall into Dumbl edore's hands. It's not that I don't trust you. He also wanted to get in contact with Remus. He had been contemplating how to handle the possible situation brewing with the Weasley's. So much has happened that I hardly know where to begin. he didn't want to put Hermione through anything further. If it weren't for the old man's disrespect of the goblins. I don't know everything he did to me. Probably for years. At the time Harry just thought that his godfather had meant the Occulumency training with Sn ape. the place just reminded me too much of the lack of control I've always had over my l ife. Also if you've heard about the attack on Hermione's house then rest easy. He deserved some of it. in case this lett er gets intercepted. Sighing again he began to write the letter. but not to let too much information ou t. for falling into that stupid trap of Voldemort's. especially if she didn't reciprocate his feelings. Hedwig was to o easily recognizable. He decided to write Ron first. One of these cau sed my muggle relatives to go mental just at the sight of me. Correcting himself. He also kept his feeli ngs bottled up for now. Dumbledore had som e of the blame for keeping Harry out of the loop for so long. I couldn't stand being there for a moment longer. the closest thing he had to a family. s he's with me someplace safe. garnering a snort as Harry reminded himself he still needed to digest all of this information that popped up at random times. Shaking his head. I know I've probably given you a right scare about my disappearance. He knew he'd have to borrow Hermione's owl as well. He trusted Ron. who was probabl y the only person he felt he could truly trust outside of Hermione. he remembered that nice little disillusionment charm he'd re cently inherited. to him at least. but I had t o get out of that prison. he walked over to the large desk that was set against the wall in the m aster bedroom and pulled out a sheet of parchment. at least not like he did just a few days prior. I guess Dumbledore wanted me to look to him as a grandfather figure or something after years of be ing abused and tormented by the Dursley's. It'd be best if you burned it after you're done reading it come to think of it. He no longer blam ed himself for the man's death. Harry put these thoughts aside and focused on the parchment in his hand. it's just that I don't t rust all the people around you. More than once on the previous year Sirius had made it known. but I do know he placed a lot of curses on me long ago. t hat the things that Dumbledore was doing were highly out of bounds. Needless to say I can't reveal everything yet. he reminded himself.

I don't know. but only use the owl I send you. To Harry's luck Remus had happened by to check on him. He otential.hing similar to Snape. Mooney. He only hoped he could get to the man without crossing Dumbledore. I also solemnly swear that I'm alright. I'm sorry to have given you a scare. I imagine i f Dumbledore finds out you got this letter he'll say that I've been bewitched or I'm in trouble or something. when Remus rescued me for a week from that Little Whinging. he kept me in the dark on a prophecy that was made when I was born betw een me and Voldemort. in order to get all his feelings about Dumbledore. You can see why I'm a little hesitant to reveal too much. took Harry back to the Dursley's and erased all knowledge of the event from his mind. for the most part.. protection or not. She's had a rough time of it. I hope to see yo u soon. everything that had happened out in the o pen.. he didn't want to play all of his cards just yet. a fact unkn own to Dumbledore. He spent a week with Remus. you should know how I was treated at the Dursley's all these years and I had to get out of there. Harry Harry re-read the letter again and. set it aside. Needless to say I'm someplace safe. which is why it had never been brought up. As you may now remembe r.. Furthermore cident that hellhole in lifted. Placing quill to parchment. keeping me from using my full magical p Finally. and he had learned all about his heritage and hi s parents in the process. some . Please keep all of this to yourself as much as pos sible. Re st assured when I think the coast is clear I'll tell you everything. Write back if you think it's safe. Remus was the closest thing Harry had to a father now that Sirius was gone. Harry had actuall y had the gumption to stand up to the man and Vernon had smacked him halfway acr oss the room.train for a while. which Harry now remembered to be one of the best weeks of his life. He pulled down another piece of par chment and stared at it blankly for a few minutes. Would've been n ice to know that and. confident that he had been secretive enough while still being forthcoming. I'm venting. I won't go into all the intricate details. he wrote a short note to Remus. Harry guesse d that the manipulative old codger had done something similar to Remus. the Order. Your Best Mate.. I'm alright and so is Hermione. I solemnly swear that I'm up to no good. Remus found him beaten and bloodied and instantly took him ou t of the house. he placed memory charms on me to keep me in the dark on a certain in happened when I was six. He wouldn't put it past Dumbledore to have some last trick up his sleeve that even Harry with all of his newfound power couldn't deal with. Again. He had been in a particularly nasty row with his Uncle Vernon. anger boiling up in the corne r of his mind as he replayed the remembered scene from his newly revived memorie s. As certain H arry was that he could eventually take down the old man. That is until Dumbledore showed up. but the basic g ist of it is that it's gonna come down to me and him in the end. but that's to be expected when your parents get killed. I just now remembered about it when the curses were also put power blocks on me. Harry decided he needed to talk to the man face to face. Any o thers might be tracked (or they can't find their way). but it's necessary. but I can't be sure. Sorry.

"Hermione." He paused a moment. he heard muted whispers coming from he r. C ome back safe Hedwig. her gaze not wavering. Then go to Remus." She kept h er head in position in front of him.. He gently tap vanished i glare he w "Go to Ron first and wait for a reply. Harry had to hold her down to the bed as she continued to struggle . Satisfied. fear still gripping at the edges of her face . Harry stroked where her feathers were. He turned the corner and quickly yet gently opened the door to Hermione's room. or of the fact that Hermione is staying with me right now.. listen to me. Harry jumped onto the bed as softly as he could. and tried to wake h er up. Harry merely picked her up off the bed to a sitting position and kept a steady embrace. "Hermione. and we need to meet face to face. After several minutes. There's a lot we n eed to discuss Mooney. Your.please. She'll know the way. I ask you to please not tell him of my contacting yo u. not to the main post area. Harry pushed her away slightly a nd repositioned himself on her bed.. "It's my fault.Harry! You're safe!" The cries didn't work.. his insomnia shatter ed for the moment. making certain to stare directly into her ey es. then you should know why I don't tr ust the headmaster anymore." She started to look away but he firmly repositioned he r face in front of his own. repeatedly speaking her name and trying to snap he r out of it.Hermione it's okay! It's me. I know where those thoughts can take you." she kept repeating to herself. Finally she seemed to calm down a bit. and I'm n ot going to let you go down that path. She interje cted to try and argue. If there's anyway we ca n secure Grimmauld I can meet you there. Harry closed the window and yawned. He kept hold of her wrists." He could see the te ars start up again as she became fully awake. who slowly released her wrists.. Not. . "Yes 'Mione. Only send Hedwig with a reply. it's me. Fault. and Hermione continued to thrash about trying to hit Harry as if he were a ttacking her. or once I have heard from Gringott's I can find another place.place where Voldemort nor Dumbledore can get to me. "H-Harry?" she questioningly asked. They can't hurt you. Is. You're safe now. Harry Harry rolled up the second pieces of parchment and walked over to the quickly tied both of them to Hedwig's ankle and pulled out his wand. His eyes went wide and he bolted out of his bedroom." He heard the flutter of wings as the owl flew out into th e night sky. screaming to non-existent Death Eaters and crying in anguish for h er parents. I made it so that only he can see you. and slowly nto thin air. letting her cry into his s houlder once more. She let out a perturbed coo at this. contemplating his wo rds as she still appeared to be on the verge of breaking down again.. window. and imagined the as getting. "This. Be sure to go directly to his room. "Don't look away. If you remember what happened ten years ago. He was brought back to the world by a loud scream coming from the room next door . She glanced up at Harry. ping her on the head. listen to me. There he found her tossin g in her bed. and her tear-stained eyes op ened a small slit.

"Harry. Finally. I promise you that I will never let the m hurt you again. evil human beings.whole. I'm not just trying to make you feel better. summoning every ounce of his inherited courage to do so. and cherish those memories. "Do you remember the Yule Ball?" he asked. c ould have taken them down if they got the jump on me like that. I doubt any 5th-year student. I am better now. and Harr y held her as best he could. "I mean that. not really saying anyt hing or making any kind of overt gesture. It feels like I'm almost. If he was going to go all the way with hi s feelings.I feel completely at peace. "Harry. twisted.. "Hermione..I just. a bit of a frown on h er face. only broken by the slight chirping of crickets outside. He leaned up against th e wall.. "'Mione. but H arry stopped her. and turned back to Hermione. I just have to. causing Harry to painfully wince as he fou . and he nearly raised an eyebrow at it.. Hermione spoke up. it'll probably never stop hurting. her words almost as hushed as Har ry's." At this Hermione finally broke free of his grip and leaned back... You are nothing like them. "I'm not thinking about what happened during but what happened after. "Those were three trained Death Eaters. When I'm around you I just.In my dream I just kept hearing their scream s and seeing their faces. He felt a gentle touch on his shoulder. I will always be there to protect you. even if Ron had been a right foul prat about the whole affair. "You---You love me?" she asked. or doing it because your my best friend even. adding in a hushed tone. "And seeing you like this I just. He could feel the tension in the room rise to permeable levels. surpri sed at his own words. In.. Harry had sat with her for a long time. he didn't t hink that she was "fraternizing with the enemy. shaking his head.well I need protect you .. "I know you're just trying to make me feel better. He merely was there. not you. all owing what he had said to come over Hermione before he continued." she said with a hint of question in her voice. thank you. "You don't have to say that Harry.. I couldn't. even me. I couldn't fight back. ap pearing not to change the subject. he had to do it right. "And you're safe from them now Hermione. generous.for my own sake.. his own countenance fa iling him for a moment. Harry decided." she said timidly. Finally he sighed." He stopped short. her eyes still glistening in the moonlight. rather than let yourself be consumed by one horrific moment in time." she fell apart again.. still whispering in her ear. "No 'Mione.." She was avoiding something . I think I'm in love with you." Harry breathed deeply. as if she was going to protest again. these people are cruel." he trailed off again. But you have to remember the good times you had.. They did this to your parents." There was a deafening silence in the room. and he pressed forward.. It's not a matter of wanting to do it. I know it hurts. letting her know that.. cari ng person who loved your parents and fought with everything you could to try and protect them. suddenly unsure of where the conversation was heading." He sighed and stood up . You are a kind. You did all you could.. to help you." She began to smile at this." "Just being there changed something 'Mione. Hermione merely nodded." She pulled back and sniffed. trying to collect his thoughts.. to be ther e for you. I came bac k to the common room and I found you there. crying in the firelight.I don't understand. For the first time Harry saw the outlines of hope in the corner of her eyes.." He turned away.

his eyes straining against th e morning light. Harry just looked at her cockeyed. He slowly turned around. He heard a slight giggle from off to the side and his head imme diately turned. each one's breath c oming in pants at the intensity of the emotions. he was certain that someone cared for him. a far cry from the exasperated looks of fear and horror that had been there moments befor e." Hermione said childishly.. Large bookcases? Lavender qui lts? A small black owl sleeping by the window? His fear quickly subsided as he realized where he was. Sadly it did pass. who was still trying to shake the sleep out of his eyes. Not for their son' s friend. cradling her head in his hands for a short while. in fact. causing Harry to frown slightly. and fe lt as though a great weight had been lifted off his chest. neither one wanting to break the mom ent. his eyes fluttered op en to find that he was. as the two of them came closer together. Harry leaned forward slightly. I just can't stop smiling. not in his room. She stood up and padded back over to the bed and sat next to Harry. Not for the Boy Who Live d. Not for the last remnant of past friendships. smiling himself." she seemed to nod t . Someone cared for him. a grin s till firmly plastered on her face. He sighed. and they broke away from each other.. it had certainly been far enough. His eyes were forced open by a stray line of sunlight that refused to be denied entry into his happy little wor ld of slumber. Holding back his emotion. She wrapped an arm around his waist and jostled him a few times. with tears of joy hugging the folds of her eyelid s. Hermione merely stared deep int o his brilliant green eyes. The s mile didn't leave his face as he thought of what had happened after their short conversation last night. and let out a shuddered affirmation. He remembered what had happened yesterday. and Harry could hear Hermione moving to directly b ehind him. mentally resigning himself to whatever was going to come n ext. as he allowed himself to hope beyo nd hope for just one brief moment. The kiss lasted for a good several seconds. "What's with you?" he asked.. Almost immediately his eyes sh ot open as he tried to ascertain his surroundings. letting out a c ontent sigh. Judging from her clothes and appearance. "I still miss them but. Grimacing a bit as he forced himself awake. t hat she didn't feel that way about him and that he was going to be throughly sma cked around for even saying such a thing.I don't know. "I'm just. and waited for the worst. It was at this moment that he realized that a certain bushy haired friend of his was no longer in bed. but seeing Herm ione this happy made his own happiness all the more increased..Harry James Potter. and said behind enraptured tears." Chapter 9: Plans of Action It was long into the morning before Harry awoke.. For the first time si nce Sirius' death. Not for some ultimate tool. and a slight blush crept across forwards. and pressed his lips against hers. "I love you too. Instead he saw wide-open eyes..ght back tears. and it was replaced by a joyful feeling of contentment. Harry guessed that she'd been up for quite some time. He looked around for a bit." Her face did dim slightly. Harry simply nodded. and an almost dumbfounded look of relief and joy settling over her. He obviously knew. "You're cute when you're confused like that. her face a little flush. He kept telling himself that he had just blundered everything. Harry's own countenance lightened greatly. her hair done in a loose ponyt ail and her face filled with pure joy. No words were spoken. They hadn't g one too far. Sitting at her desk was Hermione. but for someone that had barely ever been loved in his life. There was another long pause.

and kissed her softly on the top of her head." sh e asked. Harry thought for several moments.there.I've always felt this way. He was going to press the issue. or at least thought he might be? He logically thought back to the hotel and the protective feeling he had felt for her. especially after the tournament. "Mission accomplished. "I need a shower." She grinned back at Harry. "How about you?" She thought for a few moments as well and came up with a more coherent answer. He was sitting at his desk. Not that he had anything else better to do. First time I could te ll was third year though. Standing up. When had he figured out he was in love with H ermione." He gave her a slight squeeze. He got the same feelings after seeing her stunned at t he Ministry. His friend was always in some kind o f danger." he stated. he slammed the quill down on his desk and dropped his head onto the parchment. so the mindless activity was denied him./ . and we were waiting for our past selves to emerge from the Whomping Willow. Unfortunately the garden w as woefully gnomeless. and forced anything he was going to say out of his mind. After we used the time turner. Worry once again gripped his mind and he broiled over everyt hing for what had to be the fiftieth time in the last two days. allowing him to just hold her. he simply shrugged at his reply. held captive by the Death Eaters.I think I knew then that if nothing else in my life I wanted to see you happy. He couldn't even fly at the moment.o herself. given that his mum was keeping them all indoors for safe kee ping at the moment." she said with more than a hint of anticipation in her voice." he mused. "I'll be in the library..... he headed for the door. no doubt planning on what she would read first in her mi nd." He stoppe d there. Failing to reach a specific moment.feelings. even the time at the Yule Ball and the time as far back as seeing h er petrified in their second year. frowning ove r a book. He was trying to do his homework early. " I guess it's the same. Growling to himself. and in truth that was part of the reason that Ron had gotten over his jealousy of the famous Boy-Who-Lived. I've always felt something. somewhat meticulously jotting down a few notes. He still wasn't completely certain on these types of situations and his words were failing him. much to her protests. seeing him that devastated as the last of his family sank into oblivion wo uld have the effect of displacing any jealous feelings. She resumed her previous demeanor and leaned into Harry slightly./ Ronald Weasley was currently engaged in an activity that would astound and amaze anyone that knew him in the slightest. who held her c loser. in a vain attempt to keep his mind off of everything. Though it didn't temper his worry any. His two best friends were currently missing and for all that Ron knew might be dead or w orse./ .. saying something that Harry couldn't quite make out. Particularly after the Department of Myste ries. "When did you figure it out. "I guess. Seeing you carry on about S irius and the home he would give you. Without waiting for him to clear out Hermione grabbed several rolls of pa rchment and headed off.. he always had a notion that something like this to happen to Harry. getting a nod from Hermione. .. however Hermione just looked at him. but dismissed that as the culmi nation of something more. / . but I've always had these.. "I figured it out just recently I suppose. other than worry of course. He looked down at Hermione and asked. not needing to explain what 'it' was. Harry merely chuckled at the display and headed for the master bath to take his shower.

he shrugge d off the thought. He only hoped tha t they would live long enough to see those feelings come to fruition. he certainly knew that Hermione and he could never be like they were. he cared deeply for her. or none of the above. given his devotion to Dumbledore's cause the entire previous year. and to his amazement saw a familiar snowy white owl appear out of thin air. Given the circumst ances surrounding her disappearance. Ron could easily determine the status of interpersonal relationships. That much was certain. If Harry wasn't enchanted. Even if she wasn't being held captive by the Death Eaters. . Turning around he heard the faint sound of eggs cracking against a frying pan. Still. Slowly the conclusions that needed to be made came closer together. digesting this information with everything els .. Looking to the only real example he had of such relationships. glancing over towards a chess set. Harry on the other hand. Ron began to pace back and forth. he couldn't help but notice the ferocity with wh ich Harry stated that under no circumstances should the headmaster be told of th e correspondence. And as perturbed as Ron was at not knowing what it was. Harry said he'd been able to throw off the imperious when he had told Hermione and Ron about the graveyard incident.. and he looked at the letter with flushed anger in his face. He must have been u nder the imperious curse or something. considering their relatio nship. "Hedwig!" Ron exclaimed. at least partially. earning him a reproachful hoot as if the bird were tell ing him to keep his voice down. Ron went through his disorganized mind again.Hermione on the other hand was a conundrum in and of herself. An errant gust of wind blew through his room and alerted Ron to a sudden presenc e on his desk. Ron was more than a little worried about he r. Ron thought he might fancy her. To that end. Ron raised an eyebrow at the bird as she held ou t one leg for him. He quickly took the letter and unfurled it. but inside a small part of hi m was screaming at the top of its lungs to believe his best mate. Though he could be a tad bit more than thick-headed at times at connecting the dots concerning the latest transfig urations or charms essay. see if maybe he could get his mind off of things. even if the parties involved couldn't see it for themselves. Ron had often suspected that Hermione fancied Harry. Something had happened. Ron was very observant about how the way people acted around one another.. As he contemplated it though. He stifled a tear leaking out of his left eye and stood up. He wasn't certain if his feelings w ere love. A couple of minutes later Ron's face was pale as a ghost and he was at a loss fo r words. even if it was only in a brotherly sort of way. He noticed the second letter on her other leg. Ron didn't know how to provide tha t. As it was Ron suspected that Hermione had no feelings for him outside of being a friend. The thought almost sickened him. she needed to be s omewhere where she would have proper support. reading it as quickly as h e could.. but he figured that his parents did. In truth Hermione was a problem in an odd sort of way. lust.then everything he had said was true. To the contrary of what most people would tell him... but the more he dwelt on those feelings the more confused he got. Ron couldn't even fathom that headmaster doing the things that Harry accused him of doing. Ron's immediate reaction was that Harry must be under some kind of spell.if he wasn't under some kind of spell. He could play against the charmed set again.. but didn't pry into it.

Malfoy and Caliban had traveled straig ht to a muggle neighborhood. but for now it would work. . Anger blended lt. as if a light had suddenly been turned on veral seemingly random occurances suddenly clicked together. He collapsed onto his bed and went over the events quick ly in his mind. f emotions cross over his face simultaneously. and prayed that no one would find it. seek out Harry's affections. They made a brief turnoff where Draco had felt the effects of the cruciatus. in his head. followed by a sheer determination racked with insatiable produced was all-encompassing and quite quickly reduced Ron umb mass. His mother in particular had been particularly a nuisance. much to Malfoy's discontent. He had heard his mum and dad. and se It made a mixture o with sorrow and gui fear. his mind working a million miles a minu te. exhausted.e that had been going on. something his aching body reminded him o f repeatedly. overtly encouraging Ginny to. After a short time on the wretched bus he found himself being led into a dark ba ck alley that Draco knew led to Knockturn. before Ca liban summoned his wand from his wrist and held it out. He folded it several times over and went over to his bed. Draco asked why. The effect it to an emotionally n He glanced over at Hedwig and pulled out a piece of parchment. He had protested about traveling in such gruesome accommodations. He walked several feet before stopping. He had several questions for a certain headmaste r of his. The soft flap of her wings was the only clue she had gone anywhere. Calib an had seemed preoccupied with things. With a bang a large doub le decker bus appeared out of nowhere. The only thing that escaped his l ips as he turned back to his books. a frown coldly forming on his face. certain conversations and confrontati ons that would need to be made. hiding it directly in the center. and didn't protest as much as he could have over his less than stellar living accommodations. was "How could they?" / . what it seemed like to Ron anyway. Ron went back to his desk and sat there./ . Despite this./ Draco Malfoy stalked into his room. A plan was slowly forming in his mind. First chance he got. A moment later Draco had felt a mind-numbing bliss fall over him and against his will he found himse lf marching onto the bus. She had been doing s omething similar to him with regards to Hermione./ . Ron glanced down at the letter Harry ha d written him and picked it up quickly. he was s urprised that none of the bloody creatures had so much as looked at him and his newly christened mentor. but Caliban had brushed him off. For some time now Ron had been aware of something not quite being right. Ron stopped short. but that had stopped for a bri ef moment in 4th year when she had gone absolutely cold to the girl with that ar ticle in the Prophet. He slid it underneath the mattress. Grimacing Draco remembered the moment well. Scribbling a quic k reply he tied it to the owl's leg and watched in a half-awestruck state as the owl ruffled her feathers and disappeared yet again. Caliban shoved some money at the conducto r and Malfoy eyed the man contemptuously. merely keeping his head held high as if h e was following something. Having left the Death Eater headquarters. earning a glare from Caliban. and several for his parents as well. and Malfoy thought the man had gone completely mental. He looked out down the road. He had been everywhere the night previous. he would burn the thing. speaking in whispered tones and encouraging certain behaviors out of their two youngest children.

The events played themselves over in Draco's head at a breakneck speed." Draco's eyes went wide. confused for a moment. The pain shot out in one desperat e scream and Malfoy flayed out. It was enough that Draco was able to sit up and collect himself. In almost an instant the pain seemed to ebb away slightly. before releasing the curse. He knelt down and forced it down Malf oy's throat. His body wanted desperately to fight against the curse. and then had apparated them here. Caliban had been read ing his thoughts? "Yes. and then leading off towards Madame Malkin's. Caliban moved from where he was stand ing and pulled out a potion from his belt. lifting his wand high into the air. drivi ng home his point. Mot ioning for Draco to follow him. "Most of the servants I train are not so quick on the uptak ." Caliban intoned. nearly unconscious from the affair. Draco was prepared to march out of the room and let Caliban know who was in charge again. "Petrificus Totalus. "You learn fast. to try and relinguis h all of the pain by exercising his muscles and stretching them out. I don't apprecia te your candor on my assignments. unremittant hatred lurking on every corner of his face as he spo ke. forcefully lifting Malfoy up by the arm and settin g him up on the bed. before Caliban let u p. screaming and writhing in agony." he replied. making no motion to stop as they rushed through the bar and traveled tw o or three blocks to another abandoned alley. "The Dark Lord is an extremely skilled Legilimens. fille d with the notion once more that he was personally chosen by the Dark Lord to be on this mission. Caliban stopp ed near the entrance of Gringott's. Caliban smirked. Draco kept telling hi mself. Once there Caliban looked around. Caliban merely stared at him for a moment. He laid that way several moments. with a mixture of flavors that nearly made Draco gag on reflex. though a lingeri ng ache still remained. instantly stopping all of Malfoy's moveme nt. He ga zed at the boy. making sure the potion went d own. Caliban silently rubbed his throat. his eyes following the trail of the alley ba ck towards the Leaky Cauldron. Summoning up his resolve. Draco continued to cry in pain. CRUCIO!" The red beam hit Dr aco hard and he fell to the ground. blowing him back against the wall and shaking him to near unconsciousness. That worthless mudblood of a hound was merely there to chase b ones and fetch Potter and that foolish imposter slytherin. The pain continued for several seconds. Unless you plan on traini ng your mind to be an Occulumens like myself or your beloved Professor Snape. Binding the m up gave no release for the pent up suffering. His musc les still twinged with the after-effects of the cruciatus. "Lesson One of being a Death Eater. but never with as much hatre d and force as now. That was until Caliban forced the door open and a stunner shot straight at him. th en I suggest you keep your insulting thoughts out of your head. Malfo y groaned as Caliban used his wand to force him up to a standing position. "and you should remember well to keep them hidden next time.Once arriving at Knockturn they traveled straight to Diagon Alley. He had felt the effects of the cruciatus once or twice before. speaking in almost a scholarly to ne. They then had stalked to the Leaky C auldron. and Malfoy's eyes bulged at his overly strained nervous system. they tracked to the clothing store before stoppi ng at Flourish & Blotts for a brief moment. and his pride was mor e than a little stung with the way that Caliban had treated him in the brief tim e he had known the man. Draco sat up on his bed. After a few minutes. It tasted rotten." he began. He tried desperately to clear his mind of every single thought going th rough there at that very moment. tears flowing freely as his limbs continued t o spasm at irregular intervals. his body wracked with light sobs and every ner ve ending lit ablaze. Standing up." the man said simply enough.

the fa ct is that your father did hold a seat on the Wizengamot." He paused before adding. sitti ng across from Malfoy. Failure. and you are currently the only male heir of that family. Caliban eyed him for a moment. "and even when the Dar k Lord frees him it is going to be some time before he can resume his place in t he Ministry. Sadly for him." Almost all of Draco's control lashed out at this. The second book is for our plans. He gently placed his wand in his lap and folded his hands ." Draco noted. the old Imperious trick isn't going to work this tim e. Since no one suspects you are marked. you are a potential advantage to our mission. I believe I may be the only one who has ever felt his true wrath. "You have a problem with my father?" Caliban looked at him. "Earlier today. Should the Ministry destroy the Dark Lord tomorrow he would go cowering down in front of their hero Potter. "I have a few questions for you. "This is a book on parliamentary procedure. "Regardless of my feelings. as if to leave. should you truly make him mad . he smirked. I instruct all of my apprenti ces to engage in the exercises. "And you'd be right next to him. but said nothing. "Make no mistake." He paused a nd got a far away look in his eye that made Draco wonder for a brief second. "I have a problem with anyone who thinks that being a Death Eater is nothing mor e than a fashionable cause." he waited for Malf oy to open the second book. and he felt his wand slip into his hand." Draco restrained an angry outburst as best he could at the smile that formed on Caliban's face." Caliban fi nished and stood up. After several moment s Draco calmed down and placed his wand back in its holster. you won't lose all your power. Instead. Since the Malfoy line is a patriarchal one. trying to sound as curious as possib le without being forceful. not at all hiding the fact that the pain could return at any moment. but Malfoy wouldn't let him. Caliban sighed.. seeing that it was pub lished by the Ministry of Magic. you're liable to lose a good chunk of the power that he once wielded. but since you have no true enemies on the body and more than a few friends. "What good is this to us?" he asked. if for nothing else than to help their patience and their inner control. Success will be rewarded." Malfo y began. "Your father is currently in Azkaban... he merely offered a question. he chose to indulge the younger man." He paused a moment before moving a chair to the other end of the room." he asked. For whatever reason. "The top book is a guide to mastering occulumency. I want you to know the procedures backwards and forwards. "My cruci atus is not nearly as powerful as the Dark Lord's. Your father sways in which ever way the wind blows. a golden covered pamphlet actually.will we won't dwell on that. but continued with his plans. Caliban looked at him and sighed. Cal iban quickly returned to the present and pulled two books out of his robes. You are a ble to go places. "That book is so that you don't bungle your appearance at the session in two wee ks time. I half-suspect that as a move to save face the Minister will force the Malfoy's to fork over a large portion of their fortune. y ou shall inherit his seat until such time as he is free from Ministry charges. sitting back down. not eager to have a repeat performance under the cruciatus. Hand ing them to Draco. and scan through it." After a sneer he added. not lettin g his arrogance interject into his voice.e. see things and overhear conversations that I cannot be privy t oo.. almost with a hint o f a glare forming. "we went all those places without the mudbloods and the idiots of the M ." Caliban explained.

Perhaps luck will transpire to our way. now throughly engrossed in his own thoughts." At this Draco snickered. Following that trail I knew he went to the alley. it's doubtful we'll get any kind of lingering trail on him. It would not do to underestimate your enemy Drac o. "To all outward appearances yo u and I are simply a non-descript pair of wizards travelling through the alley. no matter how weak they may be. "The robes I gave you are charmed. a fact that the Dark Lord knew of but was unable to act on due to the wards surrounding the boy. an d stopped first at Gringott's." was the only reply Caliban gave." Caliban nodded and answered. at least a few days ago." / . "I will make with my contacts a nd find out what I can. as in he must have apparated away./ The soft chiming of a clock awoke Remus Lupin from his self-induced nap. and we'll have to make the right contacts to find out what. "Something must have happened to him inside the bank. The damn goblins set up a masking charm on their building preventing me from investigating further. Surely they'd recognize you. they leave a magical resonance trail." he explained. "And yes.inistry seeing us. T his trail is easily distinctable to someone of my talents. Regardless we'll wait here for the remainder of the day and tomorrow as well." Caliban continued." "What were we doing there anyway?" Malfoy asked. they would recognize me." At this Caliban simply chuckled. You see. lowering his wand./ . We still have no idea what this heir of Slytherin is lik e and given the fact that the Ministry has scoured the scene of the raiding part y by now. It had been two days since he had learned from Tonks that Harry had up and vanis ." He contemplated for a moment. causing Malfoy to cower back in fear . The neighborhood we first appeared in has been his safehouse for some time. Regardless he stopp ed at Malkin's and then at the bookstore before leaving the Alley." He paused for a moment before continuing." "Vanished?" "Yes. "It' s obvious Potter wasn't there. He went to th at back area three blocks from the Leaky Cauldron and then the trail suddenly va nished. If he ap parated his innards are probably scattered across half of London by now." The glimmer of his wand against the waning room light more than stopped any remark that might have come to Malfoy's lips at that moment. wherever a witch or wiza rd goes. and he has faced him thrice since then and emerged relatively unscathed each time. Potter's. which can be a problem some times." Caliba n scowled at him. We went to Knockturn first in case they didn't work. but suffice it to say there w as a second trail of his leading out of the bank. Onc e he was awake he sighed to himself and hung his head in frustration. "For now. and looked around uncertain of his surroundings. "How could that happen?" "Uncertain. He near ly jumped out of his chair. "Potter? Apparate? He can't even brew the simplest healing salve right. allowing Draco to interject. and we were following Mr./ . this time a bit impatient. "Need I remind you that the boy was certainly capable enough to defeat our Maste r when he was a mere infant. "Ah but he was there. one that was much stronger tha n the first. He later added. holding his wand upwards.

sitting on the bed. Sealing the pa rchment carefully and handed it back to the owl. just beyond his recolle ction. this much Remus knew. he sat down on the bed. However. He should be out looking for the boy. was Harry's familiar. and for the life of him he couldn't even f athom what it was. on Dumbledore 's orders to keep him there while the headmaster and the rest of the Order searc hed for Harry to place him back to the safety of his muggle relations. His own obedience was spurred on by the fact that Tonks was there to comfort him . trying to figure everyt hing out. Hedw ig.for so me strange reason. and to be quite frank in his current conditio n he was in no mood to think it over anyway. not bottled up in this run down mansion waiting for the next Death Eat er to waltz right up and do Merlin knows what to the poor lad. Remus truthfully felt like he had little else to l ose. and he was going stir crazy just sitting here. and thusly allowed himself to remain here while slowly going stir crazy. He read it quickly. hav ing her there made things better. However Remus could tell that he was obviously uncomfortable with the subject and had not broached it with him again. When he had approached Harry on the subject once or twice about how his aunt and uncle treated him. if only by a small margin. Remus sighed and leaned forward in his chair. . He had expected an owl to be there from the sound of the pecks. One thing was certain. What was it he was supposed to remember? Harry seemed adamant that there was som ething key that Remus was forgetting. The more he dwelt on it however the more he chided himself on the fact that he hadn't explored it more. He would respect Harry's wishes on the matter. Remus nearly ran over to the bird and frantically pulled out the offered piece o f parchment. In truth it always had. at least partially. large enough for him to sti ck his head out briefly and look around. He read the letter again.. He was leaving Grimmauld tonight. There. Something about that concept. At first he saw nothing but heard the d istinct sound of fluttered wings. He was broken out of his stupor by a peck on the window. as it eased the pain of loss that he fel t for losing his second brother for the second time. he still had a bit of respect for the headmaster's wishes. at the back of his mind. Though he knew Dumbledore would likely kick him o ut of the Order for doing so. He had taken respite in her presence. including a place he knew they could meet securely the next day if possible. Turning around he was quickly floored by the a ppearing sight before him. and he would not be coming back for some time. He had no question in his mind however that she was likely there. It was frustrating to say the least. Shrugging it off. Raising an eyebrow he g azed over and stared befuddled at the window. When he finished reading the letter his face was equal parts confuse d and concerned. He sank into deep thoughts about a certain subject that had only recently a ppeared in his head. leaving Remus staring for a moment. making sure to commit every syllable to memory. When he was finished. the quiet boy ha d merely muddled his way through what Remus could tell were half-truths and outr ight lies. who promptly disappeared and fl ew out of the room.' cause Remus a great deal of concern.hed. He wasn't sure if she spurr ed any other feelings beyond that. as if ther e were some hidden truth that lay just beyond his grasp. Making sure his wand was firmly within reach he sl owly paced over to the window and opened it a crack. Flushing around on a desk for a piece of parchment he wrote a reply. he moved to gather a few of his things.. He hadn't figured on Har ry or Hermione being capable of casting that complex a charm. Still. resting his chin on both of his ha nds. eager to garner any information about Harry's w hereabouts. the 'safety of his muggle rel ations.

"I used a disillusionment charm with a time delay effect on it. as each of them had eve ntually found their way to the library and was looking over books and such. as th e bird swooped down at Harry's side and held out the parchment for him. "Thank you girl. More than you can possibly know. I got a bad feeling you won't like what I tell you. I just hope we can talk when this is all over. who fl ew into another area of the house." he explained. he mentally noted to be able to talk to Ron a s soon as possible. He smiled partially when he saw the two pieces of parchment in the o wl's talons. as if it were common variety magic. merely a s an afterthought. and some of the more advanced ones were not sailing so far ove r his head. w ithout an ancient spirit droning on about the stuff. I don't understand w hy you've run off like this. He had half-expect ed the redhead to be vehement about trying to squeeze every little detail out of him. or why you've decided to give everyone a right scar . I'm glad to hear from you." Hermione's eyes went wide at this. Hermione looked up as well. "I owled Ron and Remus this morning. no doubt looking for a place to sleep. She sat. whom Harry was currently listing as firmly under the camp of Albus Dumbledore for the time being. He noted from the quick scribble of handwriting that it w as from Ron. Finally he had decided to brush up on his history of magic. He looked up and saw the reappearing Hedwig flying t owards him. A nod and smile from Harry was the only gesture needed for the bird. quick enough to see the final bit of th e disillusionment charm fade from Hedwig. "Essentially Hedwig couldn't be se en unless she was in the presence of Ron or Lupin. Dear Harry. Harry found that the simplest books on Potions and Charm s were below him. She frowned at this. were it not for the fact that Ron would be unable to escape from his parents. Hermio ne walked over from the chair where she had been sitting towards the couch where Harry was. wide-eyed for a moment. He was halfway through a partial history of the wizards of Egypt when he heard a solemn hoot from overhead. Send my best to Hermione Ron Harry was to be honest a bit stunned with the reply from Ron./ . gently stroking the bird's head as she a lmost glared at him. and he scooted over to make room for her. as if to say she wasn't moving another inch without some sl eep. But at least it was people they could trust. I don't know quite what to make of this. Har ry seemed to read this fully and placed a reassuring arm around her shoulder. but your secret is safe with me. far more lengthy than the first. Surprisingly he found he was actually enjoying the subject. As had been the case at the bookstore. and began to read it. she did n't want to be found by anyone. Harry. but she had eventually taken books from all sorts of subjects and began to read. absorbing every little tidbit of information. Herm ione had nearly been overwhelmed by the sheer volume of information in the Potte r Family Library./ . He pulled out the second letter. He would do it now. She eyed the pieces of par chment with a bit of worry in her eyes." he explained mech anically. He pushed it aside for a moment and pulled out the first letter." Harry replied softly./ The day passed in relative quiet for Harry and Hermione./ . Chalking it up to good luck. a gesture not unseen by Harry.

Sincerely. "If for my own sanity.. It's certa ." he replied. which Hermione regarde d for a moment before smiling back.. a somber tone on his face. Hermione took the oppo rtunity of grabbing the letter from her and re-reading it herself." He contemplatedit for a moment before standing up and heading towards a fir eplace in the corner. But I suppose it could just be a rebellious streak coming out in you.. Hopefully you will be able to show. However. Hermione rushed over to him. I believe this is one of the things you wish to discuss. Grimmauld is not secure. I've been expecting your call. You can call them via the floo or by owl. Mooney Harry put down the letter and stared out towards nothing.. I have an inkling of what you're talking about. just as quickl y vanishing back into the fire. A few moments later Griphook's face appeared. please inform the goblins that you' ve accepted my invitation. In regards to a meeting place. shall we say. I have no doubt you will have ways of getting around without being seen. and I can take steps to make sure we're safe out there. causing him to turn and add " Don't worry. Just li ke your father in that regard." He offered a faint smile. in fact I've been meaning to go see my account manager anyw ay. He turned back towards the fireplace and grabbed a pinch of powder from the jar on the mantle.. I suggest you meet me at Gringott's tomorrow. but I hope you can jog my memory. "I'm not going to walk around on eggshells 'Mione. I am also curious as to what it is I am supposed to remember. "Hello.if Voldemort ca tches you then. To that effect I will return to my cottage in the south of Wales tomorrow night ." A few moments later a nameless goblin appeared in the fire. Tonks is here almost constantly and there are several Order members in and out. Hermione is welcome to come too should you feel the need t o protect her more." Harry looked at her.. the floo wo uld probably be the quickest and most secure way. I trust the goblins." Harry nodded and Hermione went back to her books.if Dumbledore or. it'll be alright." The goblin offered a toothy gri n. Mr. "We are safe here. As it is I have decided to take a leave of absence from the Order f or the time being until such time as the Headmaster will have regained my trust. If you are able to come. at least to the point that it's something importan t." The goblin appeared a bit bewildered that the wizard would actually want to speak to a named goblin. I'd like to sp eak with Griphook please. I do not think that place is secure either. elements of your education . This is the one place we can be certain Dumbledore will no t be able to hear us. She placed it down and saw the determined look in Harry's eyes. "Harry. Potter. "Ah. I will have already reserved conference room 5 f or a meeting with the goblin's at three o'clock in the afternoon. but said nothing. I know you're more powerful now but." she said firmly. I eagerly await speaking with you again Harry. To that end. To that end. I will however respect your wishes on this matter and not divulge the contents o f our conversations. "I'm going with you.e. Throwing it into the fire he clearly intoned "Gringotts Bank. "And firstly might I thank you for naming me your account manager. simply and candi dly. Suffice to say Sirius was not and I am not entirely pleased with the Headmaster regarding certain.

He was about to dig into the meal before him when the doors to the Great Hall bu rst open. Is there anything else?" Harry paused for a moment and decided to end a nagging question at the back of h is mind. "I would like to meet with you tomorrow morning regarding my accounts and the properties I own. the food was still good." he stated plainly in the goblin language. but Harry cut him off. "I'd rather speak of that in a more controlled manner. and the steak that had been stuck instead spiraled to t he ground with a rather resounding splat. "Yes./ Albus Dumbledore." At that Albus plucked a piece of steak up with the silver fork and prepared to place it in his mouth. but had quickly dismissed them when they had vanished. 9 o'clock sharp then." the squib yelled. There wa s a faint poofing noise. "Unfortunately no. who's panic ked look made Dumbledore pause./ . " Haiden Orlock said that you were a wizard full of surprises. with more than a bit of mischievous venom seeping into his voice. Speaking of the H aiden though.inly a large promotion for me. as soon as possible. Nevertheless he cared less really. had allowed himself to temporarily indulge in a well-meant d inner. "Very well. "A letter I got from Haiden Orlock said that my trust vault has had sev eral withdrawals over the years. I was wondering if you would like them returned to you. He knew the floo was more than likely secure. though still a bit of a frazzled mess over dealing with the Po tter disappearance. he failed t o mention that several of the possessions of the Founders were left in our care. Whomever did has covered their tracks well. and quickly the flames returned to their natural glowing orange color." he replied. Albus looked down confused." Dumbledore eyed the man for a moment. He wasn't quite sure what had happened to a couple of house elves on the payroll.." "I trust you. "You speak the goblin tongue." Griphook replied. / . before trying to reassure him. "Headmaster. so long as he doesn't know who's taking th em back. but several more have been taken over the year's by Dumbledore and the school. more than a little impressed." Griph ook was about to go on.." Harry smiled and got a wicked grin on his face. Albus put the fork down and stared at the caretaker." Harry offered up simply. noticing t . Have you found out from who?" Griphook frowned and shook his head. certainly. Anyway./ . "I'm certain you're just imagining things Argus. And he had decided to spoil himself this evening. Griphook nodded and bid Harry farewell.he forgot to mention to you after your inheritance ritual. dining on Ravenclaw's own personal china and with Hufflepuff's per sonal cutlery. catching him off guard with the l anguage he used. but this bit of information was important to keep to very few people as possible. "Things---things are---di sappearing---all over the castle. He'd give half the gold in his vaults to see the look on Dumbledore's face if the goblin's acted with the immediacy he expected them t oo. Harry backed away and allowed a Cheshire grin to form on his face. clearly out of breath." Griphook nodded and wro te something down. and Albus looked up to see Argus Filch running in like death itself wa s at his heels.

A few moments later and he heard a few more poofing sounds. and they had to continue the search in the morning. Currently the house was home to the headquar ters of the Order of the Phoenix. tapestries. Something special. A new kid on the corps w ho was more than a tad clumsy and more than a little wet behind the ears. home of the Mo st Noble and Ancient House of Black for at least three generations and formerly home of her favorite cousin Sirius. "Sound the alarm Argus!" Dumbledore finally screamed with a bit of anger in his voice. Why in the world would Dumbledore avoid an adv antage of that? Why did he think Remus was trying to control Harry? The questions mulled over in her mind several times but she was unable to come u p with a satisfactory answer. A lot more of that uncertainty and lack of self-confidence had been changed the day she met Remus Lupin. Chapter 10: Newfound Assets To say that Nymphadora Tonks was in a good mood would be a gross mistruth. Many within the corps still regarded her as "the new kid. A moment later the goblet he had been using disap peared as well. And causing a snarl to form under his normally calm demeanor.. To sa y that she was in a bad mood would be an overstatement.hat the fork. keeping him locked up in headquarters until Harry had been foun d. and p aintings disappearing at random. seeing as how his golden throne of a chair. She had only passed auror certification three years prior. To many she was the rookie. Hopefully by then she'd be able to sort things out in her . however. A lot of that had changed when Alastor Moody had come and recruited her for the Order of the Phoenix. "The castle is under ataaaaaaaaack!" He couldn't finish the sentence corr ectly. causing pumpkin juice to splash all over himself and his food. Doing so raised more than a few ethical questions in Tonks' mind. had just left him. She honestly couldn 't put a finger on the exact thing. Dumbledore fell backwards. Perhaps it was the man's innate kindness and his willin gness to see the good in others that drew Tonks towards him. Tonks was currently sitting in the library of 12 Grimmauld Place. a fact that Tonks was unfortunately reminded o f constantly. landing rather hard on his arse. As he stared out through the open doors he saw suits of armor." but to her own sense of self she could always say that here she was something d ifferent. followe d by the annoying sound of food landing flat on the table. He heard a poofing sound closer to him. she considered her self smitten with him. She honestly didn't know how she had been drug into all of this in the first pla ce. and even then jus t by the skin of her teeth. then how could she possibly treat him this way. Another thing Tonks truly didn't understand what Dumbledore suddenly had against the man. Which was the reason why she was currently mired in this particular quandary.. In essence. Du mbledore had instructed her to watch over Remus. It was getting late. If she care d for Remus. It was obvious to her at least that all Remus wanted to do was find Ha rry and bring him back to safety. She was fighting against Voldemort in ways that mos t of the Aurors couldn't even imagine. straight from Salazar Slyther in no less. Needless to say. . To say that she was thro ughly confused would be the understatement of the century. He glanced down and m umbled under his breath when he saw his dinner was no sitting flat on the table.and the rest of the cutlery had gone missing. she was acting as h is prison guard. spying on him and t elling every one of his moves to the headmaster? It was enough to make her head and her heart throb in pain..with no plate to go with it.

I promise I won't to any aurors I happen to see on my way./ . "Goodbye.. Quickly moving out of the library and towards the entryway.. me around. That boy is the only li nk I have left with my friends and better yet my family. a peaceful calm exuding from her slumbering form. It brought a smile to Harry's face. and she saw a resolute loo k in his eyes." Tonks yelled again.think of his response? "I'm going to look for Harry. Tonks could figure that out imme diately. Just being near Harry seemed to calm her nerves enough. "It's been twenty years since I was at Hogwarts and he still orders he mumbled to himself. before beginning to turn away and head for the door. before handing a small piece of parchment to is my resignation from the Order of the Phoenix. "Remus wait! Where do you think you're going?" She fina lly stopped him just near the front door. He awoke a little early actually. when he turned around and had a slight ly perturbed look in his eye. She gazed into his eyes and th ought she saw him trying to. I have to go. She stood up from her chair and was starting to head for the stairs and h er bedroom." she stated as firmly as she could. As it was he laid there for nearly an hour. But something had obviously set him off." He pau sed a moment.. He was not angry." On that note he opened the door and walked out into the London nightfall." she bit her bottom lip. "What about. leaving Tonks with a few tears leaking out of her eyes. when she saw Remus hurry by. causing a more annoyed look to appear on Remu s' face." He solemnly looked at her for a moment. I know Professor Dumbledore is keeping me here because he somehow thinks that I'm going to be foolhardy with Harry. "I'm not going to sit here cooped up like Sirius did. He glanced over and saw Hermione laying ne xt to him." Tonks. She had found her way to his bed while in the grips of another nightmare. causing Remus to turn back./ Harry's alarm was set for 6:30 in the morning. "Dumbledore ordered you to stay here Remus." He motioned again to leave. and he took her hands into his. Remus offered a half-smile. When the wake-up alarm he had set up went off. She was abruptly cut off by Remus backing away./ . watching Hermione sleep and keeping her close to him. Well I'm not. causing Tonks to listen more intently. and knowing t hat she was calm and able to sleep allowed Harry's own sleep to come much more r apidly. I'm through with this war. but returned the kiss. but felt re freshed after the long night's sleep. / ." He turned away again. early enough for him to be able t o get some breakfast and a shower.head. not looking back at her as he finished with. he saw Hermione . I'll be a t my cottage in Wales. as if trying to retone his response. Remus seemed to read her mind though. "I have thought about it. She whimpered slightly." Lupin replied. "That go blabbing I'm going to "Wait. "Don't think I'm a fool. finally setting his bag down and r eaching into his robes for something. keep Harry safe. For all I know he could be lying dead in a gutter somewhere. and that's that. tinged with a bit of sadness." he continued." Tonks yelled a third time. "I also remember a former mentor of mine telling me about having to decide between what is right and what is easy. and he leaned in and kissed her o n the lips.. "Remus!" she called out. 'D ora. "Wait. the perturbed look on hi s face again. "'Dora." Remus said quietly. making it slightly de eper. trying to think of a delicate w ay to say this. with a bag in his hand. she tried desperately to catch up w ith Remus.

" She seemed t o calm down as she got the last words out. For now she of fered what help she could.weak. "'Mione?" he asked. your parents were killed. pressing his head next to hers. She looked co nfused for a brief moment." she muttered." Harry muttered under his breath.. I can barely handle myself sometimes and." he finally said. "You're cute when you're confused like that. It's understandable that you'd have nightmare s." As he sat down somewhat dejected.but weak is most assuredly not one of them." Hermione nearly giggled and slapped him gently on the arm. And it d idn't help Sirius at all. "You were a teacher last year Harry. Remember the DA? The reason we all escaped from the Ministry with just a few bumps and bruises is because you taught us so well.. a good fr iend. before settling into a small smile.. and she could see the debate raging in his mind through his eyes. though there was partial exaspe ration on his countenance..I'm no teacher. he followed her and draped his arms over her shoulders." she hesitated a moment before continuing.stretch out slightly and open her eyes. It was Harry's turn to blush slightly." Harry turned back around." She walked up to him and held onto his arm. I'll try and teach you what I can. As they fluttered open." She bit her lip. and Harry spun her around." She offered him a grim smile to his self -deprecating observation.. Her smile quickly fa ded to a slight grimace as she stood up and headed towards the window. "After we're done at the bank today. as if to say something else. planting a soft kiss on her forehead and then looking in her eyes. Harry fro wned. gifted. astonishingly gorgeous." Harry continued . trying to formulate an answer in her mind. "You are the strongest person I know. "Truth be told I still don't know everything they did to me. You're loyal. After a few more moments they broke away and Hermione chirped up. "Good morning. "I hate this." He paused for a moment at the mention of his godfathe r and then continued. . "I hate that I have to come crawling to you like a little girl scared of her own shadow every time I go to sleep. But she hadn't the slightest clue what it was. "There are m any words to describe you Hermione Granger. a somewhat shocked look on his face. and he turned away.. "'Mione. and if I do say so myself. she cont inued. Before Harry could misinterpret her words. "A lot of good it did us in the end." she offered. an d from the reflection in the window he could see some tears forming in the corne rs of her eyes. Believe me. "Do n't worry about it 'Mione. but Harry waved her off. her lips tightly drawn in a McGonagall sort of way. "Must be the Hufflepuff in me. "'Mione." Her face turned a deep red color.. And Dumbledore needed to save me. Hermione could tell for the first tim e that something else was bothering Harry. but first I have t . Standing up. sounding as resolute as possi ble. I hate being this. "We got o ut but just by the skin of our teeth. ruffling his longer hair in the back as h e did so. "once we've figured out everything you know I want you to teach me. I would have known not to lead you all there in the first place. "And you are most certainly not weak. "When did you get so good with words?" she asked playfully. "We'll sit down and figure out how these powers of yours work. "And if I had been a good teacher or better yet. and Harry merely embrace d her. I've had my fair share. Also. You probably just need to train your body to make the knowledge second-nature to you. the first thing they saw was Harry's own bright green eyes sparkling back at her. something deeper that thus far he had hidden from view." Hermione paused. mirroring her emotional state." Harry said softly..." he was stopped as Hermione firmly shook her head.

though muc h shorter. The long hair though. "I don't know. not understanding. "I'm underage. though the no-glasses thing was hard to get used to. Grabbing the mirror h e looked at his head and saw a similar hairstyle to his original one. "I suppose you can't beat genetics. She noticed his hair." Harry felt his hair seem to gain new life again and he heard a mumbled sigh from Hermione. "That was a great breakfast Dobby.. Yous are the first person to compliment Dobb y or thank him on breakfast." Dobby nodded and popped out of existence. Hermione stood up and headed for her o wn room for a change of clothes and her own shower. You should at least look presentable. "You really are a great cook. but simply shrugged it off." she said somewhat firmly. "Thank you Master Harry Potter sir. "At least they shouldn't call you Master. sh e let it slide." Harry nodded and pulled out his own wand." She eyed the wand tentatively. she waved the wand again." Hermione was somewhat surprised at his honest y. Harry looked over and saw Hermione shaking her head. and began to levitate the dishes off the table. A small mirror appeared and he glanced at it with mock interest. as if he were seriously considering his featu res. though even she knew it was a losing battle. With a slight pop Dobby appeared next to him. ruffling his fingers through his hair. Sighing. and a frown formed over her face. I can hav e them do the same to yours when we go today. She walked over to Harry and waved the wa nd. rather forcefully." Hermione stifled a giggle and shook her head. "Harry. He saw Hermione grab her own wand and approach him. "Use mine." . Two hours later they found themselves putting the finishing touches on a well-ma de breakfast. Harry downed the rest of his pumpkin juice and set the glass on th e table." Harry smirked and waved his wand in front of him." he said simply. After thinking about it a few moments she turned to sit back down. When she was finished. "Maybe we should see a barber before you go to Gr ingotts. who caught it in a surprisingly graceful motion. "I think it makes me look kind of rog uish. "Well then tell her I said thank you. He turned to Hermione with a smile on his face. "Finite Incantatum." Hermione frowned. "And I know you don't want to be found." Harry remarked. which made Harry smile even deeper." Harry continued to smile back. Wouldn't do to have a ministry owl come in h ere flying with threats of expulsion. muttering "Formo Saeta" as she did." Dobby stared at him and offered his usual crooked smile. but hesitate slight ly. grabbing a change of clothes as he did. and she handed him back h is wand. He tossed it to Hermione." Hermione said with an almost dejected look across her face. Harry tried to watch in the mirror but Hermione set it down on its f ace. For the first time since the whole ordeal began. Harry suddenly felt his hair go complete ly limp. "But I gave up on trying to stamp out generations of conditioning as f ar as house elves were concerned. to keep it a surprise. bu t finally nodded and set down her own. Winky did help too. muttering. "'Mione?" Harry questioned. Harry's hair was still sticking out in several direc tions. she took in all of his f eatures. and headed for the shower.o figure it all out for myself." he playfully replied. Much to his joy. For the moment however." Harry remarked with a smile. obviously annoyed by the fact that Harry was shutting her out of the conversation. and Hermione set about removing bits and pieces from the back and sculp ting it up. dishes following him. Harry walked out of the room. "He occasionally calls me mister.." she finally remarked. "The goblin's removed the tracking charms. She liked the improvements.

he made certain to keep Hermione close and flicked his bangs down forward to hide the remnants of his scar. He noticed that Her mione was even closer to him now. It is broken down by family. He looked up and gave a toothy grin as he saw his client walk i n. 11 sickles. Without his glasses and without the scar bein g so overstated. He looked over at H ermione and added." Harry nodded and glanced over the parchment. which has no money in it but does hold the possessions we./ . Behind the desk sat Griphook. The office was smaller than Haiden Orlock's had been./ ." he began. Griphook was a bit taken aback by the outward show of equality from the witch./ . "I'm Hermione Granger. It was only a minute or so. 000 ga . The walls were stone and a small fireplace was set in the center on the right hand side. This e xcludes Vault #2. 000. Th ough there may be no liquid assets in the vault.. he was d irected back down a similar hallway he had been in before. France. "That is a quick overview of th e properties and liquid assets that you currently hold here at Gringotts." she said with a smile. Still. "and guest.ahem.." He motioned for th em to sit down.. Once inside Harry felt the glamor charm immediately cease. Harry squeezed her hand firmly as he felt her grip tightening./ About an hour later Harry and Hermione found themselves strolling down Diagon Al ley. Attracting the attention of the nearest goblin. even though it was likely that no one they kne w would be in the bank. a bit more relaxed now that they were away from the prying eyes of the public. Appraisal Value Approximately 250. Potter. "Ah." he said with a slight flourish on the end. which they did. 000 g alleons Property: Villa in Marseilles. but the glamor charm that Harry ha d placed on the both of them kept her mind at ease somewhat. Hermione offered her hand for the goblin. Still. Aft er the introduction he tottered back behind his desk and flushed out a small pie ce of parchment. but still accepted it quickly. filling out some paperwork. "Now. Hermione kept a close eye on anyon e who seemed to wander too closely to the young couple. 4 knuts in liquid assets Property: Castle Draven in Scotland. A small mahogany desk was set up at the front. he figured that no one would recognize him. handing the parchment to Harry. w ith two chairs nestled in front of it. Appraisal Value Approximately 5.. He also knew that due to his statu s and the likely huge amount of assets he held here. the Founders Vault.. it was a relat ively cozy atmosphere. Thank you for coming today. when the y arrived at Gringotts bank. They stopped at the f ourth door on the right hand side and Harry walked in. Summary of Assets for Harry James Potter Vault #133: Draven Family Vault 832. though more like a lifetime in their minds.. though that was to be expe cted given the status and title of the goblin in question. As they made the sh ort journey down the alleyway into Gringotts.repossessed last night. 337 galleons. we still listed it for your rec ords. Hermione was more than a little nervous. something he half expected to happen. Mr. nothing short of the death sentence from the goblin chieftain himself would cause him any trouble while he was inside the bank.

14 sickles. 000 galleons Total: 59.lleons Vault #297: Warrens Family Vault 129. 000 galleons Property: Walburgia Black's Estate in Wiltshire.. 573 galleons in liquid assets No Property Assets Vault #304: Potter Family Vault 18.000 galleons on July 31 per year till 17th birthday of trustee Vault #711: Black Family Vault 22. England. England. 6 knuts in liquid assets Value to be reset to 100. 007 galleons. 000 ga lleons Property: 7 Phoenix Court in Godric's Hollow. 13 sickles. 654. 722. 000. 000 galleons Vault #801: Seldon Family Vault 577. Appraisal Value Approx imately 2. 11 knuts Property: 16. England. "In addition there are several family heirlooms in the main family vaults. 344. Appraisal Value Approxima tely 64. He heard a gasped sigh from Hermione next to him. 907. Those vaults are simply where the money and deeds are kept. 11 knuts Harry's eyes were currently as wide as saucers as he contemplated the amount of money at his immediate disposal. 000. Appraisal Value Approximately 8.. 666 galleons. 000 galleons Property: Black Top Plantation in Hellsmuth.not to mention the properties that he had. Any other types of proper . United States. 500. 3 sickles in liquid assets Property: Potter Manor in Scotland. 4 sickles. 093 galleons. The money in the Draven family vault alone would be enough to last him his entire l ife. 1 knut in liquid assets No Property Assets Total Value of Assets Liquid: 42. 907 galleons. Appraisal Value Approximately 9 3. 000 galleons Vault #687: Potter Trust Vault 49. 229 galleons in liquid assets Property: 12 Grimmauld Place in London. 564. Virginia. 4 sickles. 907 galleons. and realized she must hav e seen the totals as well. Appraisal Value Approximately 1.

"What if I want to sell some of these properties? Or trans fer ownership? Is it possible to look into that?" Griphook offered a nod and han ded Harry a rather large ledger. and having a stor y about the Boy-Who-Was-Lost becoming the Boy-Who-Was-Found would certainly appl y. in all their care they did not notice the blo nde haired woman following from the bank." Hermione looked puzzled as s he glanced at Harry." He paused a moment. It also includes an inventory of all the items in yo ur high security vaults. armaments. "We don't know who did it. Harry had Griphook remove the tracking charms o ff Hermione's wand and bid him farewell. a fact that nearly made Hermione squeal with glee. Draven is 31 and Warrens is 36. "Griphook. whatever. Winky nodded in retu rn. After a while Harry coughed to get their attention. "One of the things the Haiden told me in his letter that started this whole thin g was that someone was stealing galleons out of my trust vault." Hermione's look was a strange mixtu re of inquisitiveness and anger at this little revelation. "I have a favor to ask the two of y ou.. Harry merely shrugged. Should you want certain items removed from there. Potter & Seldon holdings he now had majority ownership of the Daily Prophet. There's about ha lf in there of what there's supposed to be. I have this new house up north and I need someone to help me. are stored in our High Security Vaults. Should you wish to access them personally.. He had left this part out of his story. She obviously was try ing to figure out who would do such a thing. but not th e high security ones. a goblin security team ca n do that for you. her own eyes devilishly glimmering in the sunlight." Harry nodded. "Master Harry Potter sir.. the Seldon vault is 24.ty. "The master key you received will work for the asset vaults. As soon as they left the bank they felt the glamor charm resume and they walked with a bit more confidence. In anticipation of her reply. we can do so to day. leaning back in his chair and seeming to think some things over. adding a few galleons to the goblin's i ncome for applying the service. Black is 13. Still. books." Dobby interjected without question. scrolls." Hermione merely nodded. and Harry could only smile at the display. Harry did make sure to check with Griphook again to make sure that he was still on for his meeting with Remus for later in the d ay. Dobby and Winky proceeded to dance around like madmen at this. including the somewhat interesting point that between the Black . As I mentioned before the Founders Vault is High Security Vault #2. drinking from a small goblet on his desk before con tinuing." Harry began.you saved Winky's life!" the female house elf squeale d with glee. Harry made sure to have many of the scro lls and books from his high security vaults transferred to the library at Potter Manor. and both house elfs looked up at him with eternal gratitude in their eyes. Rita Skeeter knew a good story when she saw one. Showing t . The Potter Vault is number 7.. "That documents all the transactions in and out of your vaults from the moment y ou took possession of them. t he meeting with Griphook was concluded." she asked." "Consider it done sir. Harry smiled and flushed the piece of parchment out of his pocket. After discussing a few of the investments in some of the businesses that Harry w as now owner of. Whoever it was covered their tracks to well." he began. "Now that you're bonded to me. Harry nodded. See. Sadly it does not show the transactions out of your tru st vault due to the cleverness of the perpetrator. "Perpetrator. Forgoing the chance t o see his vaults for the moment. but Harry could tell that the wheels of thoug ht were quickly spinning in her head.

After telling Tom he was finished with it. He absentmindedly cast a notice-me-not charm as if they were going out of fashion. Raising an eyebrow he held out his arm for H edwig to land on. Harry walked out into muggle London. The owl landed and regarded him for a moment. He flew into action quickly. taking in his ne wly acquired features. The two birds quickly took flight without a second thought. Come Quick. maki ng sure to transfigure his clothes into more normal attire for said world. He had never really apparated before. Harry conjured a small stand out of thin air for the two birds and the n pulled out the piece of paper. and read it. The blood drained out of Harry's face at the notice of this. His features grew c old at Hermione's short plea for help. he thanked him again for the silence and left him a small tip. but the knowledge was standing there in th e back of his mind. when he heard a distant hoot. Death Eaters. Parents Dead. He focused on his target. closely followed by a smaller owl t hat Harry recognized as Hermione's. and then stopp ed for a moment as he realized what he just did. First he pul led out the piece of parchment for his house and showed it to the owls. 15 Harold Street in Kensington. He walked out of the room and shut the door behind him. Attack.hem the address the elves nodded and snapped their fingers. popping out of exist ence. Shaking his head he reached int o his pocket to pull out the motorbike. He made a slight turn and in a fla sh was gone. before lifting her leg with a small piece of paper attach ed to it. Harry then got ready to pull out his motorbike when another thought popped into his head. Harry smiled again and nodded. . He gazed u p into the clouds and saw a snowy white owl. he st alked down the sidewalk until he got to an abandoned alleyway. Apparition.

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