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Chapter 23 : It's Gotta Be You
 
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            “Come on Granger, I want to show you something,” Draco said as she opened his present the next morning after they had both dressed.

            “Just hang on a second Draco,” she laughed. Smiling he waited until she had pulled the last piece of wrapping paper off of the velvet box. She stared at the box a moment before she looked back at him.

            “Just open it Granger.”

            “Oh, that's beautiful. Thank you Draco.” She was staring at a silver locket, in the shape of an oval, with some very old carving on it.

            “That’s not the best part. Watch.” He pulled it out of the box, holding it flat in his palm, and faced it towards her. A moment of silence and she said, “What was supposed to happen?”

            “Hang on, let me open it. There we go.” Staring back at her was herself, from a moment earlier, eyes wide in wonder.

            “It takes pictures?”

            “Yep, all you have to do is want one and it’ll take it. You can even get bigger ones from it and all. Plus you can put any pictures you have on it, Muggle or magic, from whenever.”

            “That’s amazing.  How do you get rid of them?”

            Laughing he replied, “Just ask it to get rid of them.”

            “Oh, ok.” A moment later, she was hugging him, locket still in hand. She didn’t notice that it took a picture of the two of them itself.

            “Ok, so now I want to show you something else.”

            “Ok, what is it?” she asked.

            “It’s a surprise Granger.” Smiling he led her into the elevator and pressed a button. Not that she knew where they were going, but she was extremely giddy.

            When they finally reached the room, he covered her eyes with his hands. He guided her out of the elevator and into the room. She liked whatever it was she smelt, she recognized it as a place she loved. He guided her further into the room before he pulled his hands away.

            Before her were hundreds of the biggest bookshelves she had ever seen, not one with an opening.

            “There must be hundreds of thousands of books here,” she breathed as she stepped away from him.

            “Millions. Every book anyone from my family, in its entire existence, is here.”

            “Oh wow,” she was damn near speechless.

 
            The rest of winter break flew by, school jumping in to take its place. They were back to researching, back to learning, and they were finding it was not nearly as fun as Christmas at Malfoy Manor. Hermione had brought books back from their library in the hopes that they might help the researching.

            Josi had told her when they were leaving that the potion was ready and that anytime they were ready, they could decide who would go back. She had simply nodded and hugged her mother fiercely. 
       

            It was January tenth when they finally crowded together in the Head’s Common Room again. Brett had brought the potion, saying Josi had given it to him before they separated.

            “Ok, so if they did make the cane, then that would mean that we have to find it and Hufflepuff’s cup.”

            “Yes, but Draco, how do we know that Voldemort found it?” Brett asked.

            “Fine, then ask Gryffindor if there is anything important to him that he would like for his family to keep for forever.”

            “Ferret, you don’t just ask someone that,” Ginny said as she shook her head.

            “Maybe you don’t Weaselette, but that doesn’t mean I don’t.”

            “Malfoy, just shut up,” Ron said angrily. He was still being a jerk.

            “Whatever, Ronald could you atleast try to be nice? Please? Now, we have to figure out who’s going back.”

            “Ok, so obviously, either Brett or Josi or even Bryan would have to come with us, well, the person going anyways. And then we could all draw straws or something,” Harry suggested.

            “Why do one of us have to go?” Brett asked.

            “Well, it’ll probably be easier if they have someone their age right?” Draco said.

            “Draco, the founders were no more than twenty when they became the founders,” Brett said.

            “Oh.”

            “Well, how are we going to figure out who’s going then? I thought one of them would be going simply because, well, it just seems like the thing to do. How do we choose between us?” Ginny asked.

            “I like the drawing straws idea,” Brett said as he leaned back on the couch.

            “Me, too. Shortest goes or longest?” Hermione asked.

            Draco turned to Ginny and they did a quick round of rock-paper-scissors which Ginny won. She said, “Shortest.”

            “Ok, Brett will you?” Harry asked. Nodding, Brett drew his wand from his sleeve and five sticks appeared in his hand.

            “Ladies first,” he said nodding to Ginny and Hermione. Hermione being the closest drew first, then Ginny. Harry and Ron went next, leaving Draco to be the last.

            When everyone showed their sticks, it was quite obvious Draco’s was the shortest.

            “Ok, well, I can talk to Bryan. Josi's busy doing something for the Order and Bryan and I got to talking about this last weekend.”

            So it was settled, Bryan and Draco would go back to the founder’s and ask them about the cane thingy.

            Somehow, it seemed so much simpler and, well, less crazy in their time.
 

            “So what do we do?” Draco asked Brett as he and Bryan stood in his bedroom.

            “You drink the potion, touch your wands together, and think of the time period you want to go back to and the people you want to be near.”

            “And it just takes us there?” Bryan asked looking at the bottle in his hand suspiciously.

            “Yeah. It just takes you there.”

            “Alright, how do we get back?” Bryan continued.

            “You just do the same thing. And only one of you has to think of the time you want to go to.”

            “Ok, so one year after Hogwarts was founded?”

            “We don’t need a specific date?” Draco asked incredulously.

            “No, not everything has a specific year, and there are all the different calendars, but if you have a specific date that works too, but you have to specify which calendar.”

            “Oh, ok.” He turned to Bryan and took out his wand after taking off the top of his vial. Bryan copied him and touched their wands together.

            “Bottom’s up,” Bryan said and they both downed their potions thinking of one year after Hogwarts was founded.
 

            “This is so weird,” Draco said as he looked around the room they were standing in. It was the room they had just left, only much, much different. Different colors, different arrangement, different furniture, different everything.

            “I agree. I assume the founders must be near by,” Bryan said as he looked around as well. They both heard footsteps and shouts outside the door and looked at each other panicked. Both jumped when the door slammed opened and revealed a very angry looking girl. Her shouting behind her trailed off as she saw them.

            “-and just because,” her final word was slow and quiet. Then, “Who are you?”

            “Um, well, I'm Bryan and this is Draco.” After a pause of looking at him, Bryan decided to lie, “And he’s my son.”

            After a momentary hesitation, Draco approached the girl, hand held out, “Pleasure, Miss…”

            “Patil. What are you doing in my chambers? It’s improper for a man to be in a woman’s chambers, lest they be married, and I can assure you, I am not married to either one of you, sirs.” She was looking at his hand as if it were dirt on her shoe. Ever so slowly he dropped it.

            “Our apologies Miss Patil, we were simply looking for any of the founders, and we lost our way.” Bryan’s words were an attempt to break through the awkwardness. An attempt that definitely didn’t work.

            “That is very well, but you would need the password to enter and I haven’t told anyone the password, having made it up but moments ago.”

            “Well, how else do you suppose we got in here?” Draco asked.

            “Well, I, sir, you are being extremely rude. I ask you to leave my chambers at once; I hope you find an escort to whomever it is you wish to see. Goodday, sirs,” she finished as they moved out the door. Draco turned and bowed to her, the way he had seen his grandfather do it many years ago.

            “Our apologies again, Miss.” She simply nodded and shut the door in his face. He stood up right as he turned to see Bryan giving him an odd look.

            “What?”

            “Bowing? Why did you just bow to her?”

            “I figured that’s what they do in the old times right? I figured if she didn’t want a handshake, then maybe that would be better. Saw my grandfather do it a lot before he died, Dad.” He rolled his eyes as he said the last word.

            “Hey! I figured it would be a good cover story, ok? We’re descendents coming to see if our forefather’s really were as amazing and smart as the world holds them to be.”

            “Fine whatever.” As they rounded the corner they heard people talking in hushed voices and the light patter of feet.

            “You really can't expect us to believe that can you? 'Tis simply foolishness; no man would… Oh, Goodday sirs. May I ask who you are? For I have not seen thee before this moment.”

            “I am Bryan , and this is my son Draco. We are looking for the founders of this great school.”

            “Ah! Well, may I ask what business you have with us?”

            “It’s, well, private.” He looked pointedly at the young man next to, he assumed, Gryffindor.

            “Well, scurry off then, we’ll continue this later. Godric Gryffindor, now, may I ask what is it you would like to speak about?”

            “Well, actually, sir, would it be possible to talk to all four of you?” Draco felt strange listening to the man, even weirder trying to speak like him.

            “All four of us? Why certainly. Would you like to accompany me to our meeting room?”

            “It would be our pleasure, thank you sir.” Bryan was finding it just as weird to try and talk to these people. 
 
            They walked mostly in silence to the chamber room behind the Great Hall. When they entered they were heartily introduced by Gryffindor to the other three. Draco guessed they were three or four years older than himself.

            “What is it you would like to speak to us about?” Slytherin asked them in a creepy, deep voice.

            “Well, see, the thing is…” Draco stumbled, unable to express it in a way that made sense, or wouldn’t get them thrown out.

            “We’re your some bunches great grandchildren, him one more then I of course, and see, we came to see if you were as great and grand as history says you are. We think you're better, but we wanted to know for ourselves.”

            “Which of us?” Ravenclaw asked.

            “All of you. We were also wondering about things you may have created for the school. Each of you your own object, and then one for the four of you. Father doesn’t think you did, but I figure if you’ve got the power, why wouldn’t you have used it?”

           “Oh, oh yes we did,” Hufflepuff giggled as she clapped her hands together a few times, “I have a cup, and Godric made a sword, Salazar, you made a locket right? And Rowena, well, you're just a right vain lady. She made a sculpture of herself, you see. And together we have this stick. Although, I don’t understand why, I mean when we get old and we need it, well, who will get to use it?”

            “That’s a very good point Helga, but you see, relations, I want to know how you got here. Surely, time travel is not possible, even for wizards.” Apparently Salazar was skeptical.

            “Actually, it’s not that hard. Wizards and witches alike can do it; we have time turners that let you go back hours, up to a few days. But we took a potion and simply thought of the time we wanted to go to.”

            “That is amazing,” Godric said.

            Draco shrugged before he said, “Do you think, maybe we could have a look at it?”
            “At what?”

            “The stick, Madam.” Hufflepuff giggled again, “Of course, of course.” Then she summoned it. Draco watched as it flew out of a wall that opened in the back. When he saw it, Bryan whispered, “It’s beautiful. Thank you for showing us.”

            She simply nodded and Slytherin gave her a dirty look.

            “Well, thank you for your time, we must be going now.”

            “Oh, so soon?” Ravenclaw asked.

            “Yes, you see, we don’t know how long we’ll have been gone back in our time, and we wouldn’t like anyone to worry. Goodday, and it was simply a pleasure to meet you.” Draco nodded at his ‘relations’ as Bryan dismissed them.

            A few moments later they were outside of the Head’s Common Room again.

            “You ready?”

            “Let’s get the hell out of here Bryan; I'm not sure I like it.”

            “Gives you the creeps, too?” he asked as he took the bottle from his pocket and unscrewed the lid. Draco did the same and they touched their wands together.

            “Completely. Cheers.” Then they tossed back their vials, touched their wands together and thought of the moment they left.

 


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