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Harry Potter and The Link by Pumpkin juice

Format: Novel
Chapters: 25
Word Count: 78,047
Status: WIP

Rating: 15+
Warnings: Mild Language, Scenes of a Mild Sexual Nature, Strong Violence

Genres: Romance, Action, Humor, General, Angst, AU, Mystery, Drama
Characters: Draco, Ginny, Harry, Cho, Dumbledore, Hermione, Neville, OC, Remus Lupin, Ron, Sirius Black, Snape, Voldemort, Fred/George, Narcissa, Tonks, Luna, Lucius, Seamus, Peter Pettigrew, M. McGonagall, Pansy
Pairings:

First Published: 10/22/2004
Last Chapter: 02/06/2007
Last Updated: 02/06/2007

Summary:
A link has been forged between good and evil, one that would see the end of all things. Who will conquer?

AU 6th Year, Pre-HBP. Sirius' death plagues Harry's dreams at night and the prophecy weighs heavilly upon his young shoulders. Remus takes up the role of Harry's Godfather; by-so-doing, fulfilling an ancient prophecy about a Werewolf and his Cub that had long since been forgotten... untill now. STORY ON HIATUS 'TILL XMAS!


Chapter 1: Visions of Evil Foes
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The sun shone down upon Privet Drive brightly one day in mid July, welcoming the residents to step outside their homes and bask in all its glory upon their pristine lawns.

However, not everyone of Privet Drive had noticed the sunshine outside or the cool summer breeze that swept through the air. This person was Harry Potter. He was a perfectly ordinary 16 year old boy… well, unless you count the curiously lightning bolt shaped scar that resided upon his forehead, yet well hidden beneath an ever-growing and untidy mop of black hair.
Harry had received this scar the night both his parents had been killed. They had been murdered at the hands of the darkest wizard ever known to the wizarding world, the world to which Harry Potter belonged.
However, the dark wizard known as Lord Voldemort, or ‘He-who-must-not-be-named’ had failed at his attempt to kill Harry because of Harry’s mother, Lily. Lily Potter had sacrificed herself in an attempt to save her son from such a fate as she, and by so doing, protected Harry with a blood bond that at the time was unknown to Voldemort. So when Voldemort struck Harry with the fatal ‘Avada Kedavra’ curse, the spell backfired leaving Voldemort stripped of his powers and a mere bodiless entity.

Since then Lord Voldemort had been slowly regaining his power, whilst his followers, known as Death Eaters, rejoined their master’s side. Last year, Harry had been tricked into the department of mysteries by a vision that he had received by Voldemort of him torturing Harry’s godparent Sirius Black. Along with his friends, Ron, Hermione, Neville, Ginny and Luna; Harry had gone to the department of mysteries in an attempt to what he thought was a rescue mission. However, they were set upon by Lord Voldemort’s Death Eaters and very nearly killed, only when The Order arrived with Sirius did they realise the trap that had been set for them, I trap in which cost Harry’s godfather, Sirius Black, his life.

For almost a month now Harry had been replaying the events that took place at the ministry over and over again in his head. Thinking how foolish he had been to believe that Sirius was in trouble and then how stupid it was of him to endanger his friends and his own life by gallivanting off to the Ministry of Magic. Most nights he would cry himself to sleep, muttering how sorry he was that he had cost Sirius his life, that it was all his fault.

When Harry did eventually get to sleep, he would suffer from nightmares of watching Sirius fall through the veil over and over again, and when Harry would reach the veil he’d pull it back only to reveal the decayed and rotting face of his once handsome godfather, saying, ‘Why Harry? Why do you always have to play the hero?’ at which Harry would choke between sobs, ‘I’m sorry Sirius, I’m sorry!’ To which the rotted flesh would form a smile before widening and uttering a high pitched, cold, merciless laugh. The laugh of Lord Voldemort.
For many nights now Harry had awoken from the same re-occurring dream in a cold sweat and his scar prickling slightly.

Harry however, being in the low, self-pitying mood that he was in, found that the nightmares served as his punishment and that he deserved to have them, after all he had cost Sirius his life, and compared to that what were a few nightmares?
On top of all this, Harry also had the over-hanging weight of the prophecy upon him. Before the end of last year, Professor Dumbledore had revealed to him what the prophecy had said, after the record of it at the department of mysteries was smashed.

Harry still hadn’t come to terms with what it meant yet, he was still grieving for Sirius and his mind was so full of other things that the last thing he wanted was to begin contemplating that he either had to be victim or murderer.

He also hadn’t heard much from the wizarding world this summer, despite Dumbledore’s actions of last year when he had admitted his mistake in keeping things from Harry, it didn’t seem as though much had changed. Every letter he had received was pretty much the same:

Dear Harry,
How are you? I’m fine, I went to the south of France with my parents, it was lovely. I wanted to send you a postcard but thought better of it since well… you know…
Ron and I are at Headquarters, there seems to be lots going on however we’re still not allowed to sit in on any of the meetings and no one seems to want to tell us anything of any importance, and what we do know we can’t put in any letters in case they are intercepted… but don’t worry, we’ll be sure to fill you in on all that we know when you do get here. Which by the way should be pretty soon.
Harry, I just wanted to say don’t punish yourself over what happened last year, I know it’s hard, we all miss Sirius, but I know he wouldn’t want you to mope around all summer, he’d want you to live life, get out there and do things…
Anyway, hope to see you soon,
Love
Hermione.

Harry,
Hey mate, things are really boring around here. Mum won’t let us in on any of the meetings still and because Fred and George have joined The Order now we can’t even use any of their Extendable Ears! How are you? Hope the Muggles are treating you right? Otherwise we’ll come right over and get you, and maybe set Moody on them!! Listen don’t worry too much about you know… what happened before at the Ministry. Nobody blames you, so you shouldn’t blame yourself either, ok?
Well see you soon mate,
Ron.
Ps) Mum and Dad say that they’ll be picking you up sometime before Saturday, but they’ll owl you before.


After passing through the barrier of platform 9¾ last year, Harry had been told to owl the order at least once every three days to tell them that he was ok and that the muggles (Harry’s Aunt and Uncle) were treating him ok. Harry had resigned to writing them at the very last moment, before he worried that the whole Order might arrive if they didn’t hear from him. Every note was the same: I’m fine. He had also told Hedwig not to await for a reply, he didn’t want them to be sending him messages back, just so long as they didn’t come storming through the house in search of him, he was fine.

However, Harry was not fine at all. He had barely eaten anything that his aunt Petunia slid through the cat flap that had been placed in his door to pass his food through, and the only times he left his room was to go to the bathroom or cook the Dursley’s their breakfast. The Dursley’s it seemed, were happy with this arrangement. In their opinion the less they saw of Harry the better the day would seem. Not that Harry minded, the last thing he wanted now was attention, all he wanted was to sink into shadow, and never be found again.

Now however, Harry’s room was basking in sunlight and any hope of shadow to hide in was lost. Harry groaned. He was sprawled on his back on top of the covers of his bed, wide awake, just staring at the ceiling, watching as Sirius fell in slow-motion through the mysterious veil. His thoughts were disrupted however when their was a rush of wings and the hoot of a tawny owl as it glided into the room, landing softly on Harry’s bed. Slowly Harry raised himself off the bed into a sitting position, taking the rolled up newspaper from the Tawny’s grasp. He placed a Knut inside the owls pouch before it took off again outside the open window.

Harry picked up the paper and unfurled it, he glanced down at the front page as his eyes became round like saucers behind his wire-rimmed glasses.

‘MASSIVE BREAKOUT AT AZKABAN AS DEMENTORS JOIN YOU-KNOW-WHO!’

Below the headline were the mug shots of three of the Death Eaters to have escaped. To the left was Antonin Dolohov, next was Rodolphos LeStrange, and lastly Lucius Malfoy. Harry’s heart sank still lower, all that had happened at the end of last year had been in vain, the Death Eaters that they had helped capture had now escaped, and what’s worse was that now the Dementors had joined Voldemort too. Sirius had died for nothing.

Suddenly another owl came sweeping through the open window, Harry recognised it immediately as Pig. The small owl buzzed around Harry’s room excitedly, obviously thrilled at being used to deliver another message. Harry stood on top his bed and snatched at the letter held in Pig’s claws, who obviously didn’t want a reply as it flew back out through the window again.

Harry, expecting to read Ron’s scruffy scrawl as he looked at the parchment was surprised to see the loopy, neat handwriting of Professor Lupin:

Harry,
Be ready to leave by midnight tonight, we’re coming to get you.
Remus Lupin.


Having nothing else better to do Harry decided to pack his trunk even though it was only lunchtime. He even folded-up all of his clothes and placed them neatly at the bottom of his trunk, before resting all of his spell books and homework on top. He quickly scrawled a note on the back of the parchment that Lupin had used saying:

Ok. I’m sending Hedwig ahead.
Harry.


Then he attached the note to Hedwig and watched as she took off out the window. He dragged his trunk towards his door and placed Hedwig’s cage and his Firebolt next to it. He looked longingly at his Firebolt, Dumbledore had sent it back to him along with six owls carrying it, only last week. The Firebolt was the broomstick that Sirius had given him in his third year at Hogwarts, he let the tears stain his face before breaking down completely and collapsing to the floor, still clutching the broomstick. Soon he was asleep again.

‘Why Harry? Why do you always have to play the hero?’
‘I’m sorry Sirius. I’m sorry!’
‘Hahahahahahahaahaha…’
‘NO!!!!!’


Unaware of what time it was, Harry awoke from the nightmare that had plagued him since the beginning of summer. He was drenched in a cold sweat and his scar tingled painfully, but he brushed away his tears angrily. He had no business crying, this was what he deserved.

Finally he found his alarm clock, it was 8pm. He gingerly got to his feet, immediately wishing he hadn’t as his head began to spin and his scar burst open. The pain was excruciatingly painful, like nothing he had ever felt before, worse than when it had hurt at the ministry. He came crashing back down to the floor, his head banging against the solid floor.

‘…you have done well it seems’, came the familiar high pitched and cold voice of Lord Voldemort.
‘Yes, my Lord, thank-you master.’ Their face was hidden in shadow by their dark hood
‘What of the Aurors?
The masked face of Bellatrix LeStrange was thrown into view as Harry watched from the eyes of Voldemort himself.
‘Obliviated, my Lord.’
Voldemort’s lipless mouth formed a grotesque smile. ‘Bella, you shall be rewarded.’
‘Thank-you master, thank-you!’ Bellatrix grovelled in front of Voldemort’s feet as she kissed the hem of his black robes and bowed before him.
‘Lucius.’
The usually sleek blonde hair of Lucius Malfoy appeared to be dull and knotted, his face grimy and his fingernails caked in dirt.
‘My Lord.’ He replied grovelling before the feet of Voldemort before repeating LeStrange’s actions and kissing the hem of his robes.
Voldemort regarded him for a moment or two before kicking him in the side away from him. Lucius rolled away from him and recoiled into a small ball before gingerly stooping into a very low bow.
‘Get up.’
Lucius slowly got to his feet and winced.
‘You failed me before Lucius. You should be grateful that I even bothered to release you from Azkaban!’
‘Yes my Lord, I am Master!’
Continuing as if Lucius had not said anything Voldemort said, ‘However, I am in a good mood. You shall prove your loyalty to me and that you can be trusted once again by completing this simple task…’ Voldemort seemed to pause as if deciding to continue or not. ‘…you will find out what was in the prophecy between myself and Potter. If you fail, the consequences will be severe. Do I make myself clear?’
Lucius hurriedly replied, ‘Y-yes my Lord.’
‘Good. Do not give me reason to doubt your service to me again, and use any means necessary’
‘Yes Master.’ Lucius replied with again a very low bow before sweeping away, out of Harry’s view.


The vision faded and Harry was brought back to the confines of his bedroom. He wheezed for air as bile rose inside of his throat seeking exit, and before he knew it he had been sick and passed out again on the floor.

~~~~~~~~~
Well, what did you think?? Please READ AND REVIEW!! ;) I will reply to all reviews! Thanks!! ~Sam

PS) Banner by Iced_Cherriez


Chapter 2: Returning
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Here's chapter 2 guys, and don't forget to review at the end!!Enjoy!! ;)

‘Why Harry? Why do you always have to play the hero?’
‘I’m sorry Sirius. I’m sorry!’
‘Hahahahahahahaahaha…’
‘NO!!!!!’

A new voice could be heard, not that of his godfather Sirius’.
‘Harry? Harry!’
‘What’s wrong with him?’
‘Who knows it could be anything when Potter’s concerned’
‘Harry, wake up!’

Everything seemed to be working slowly. What had happened? Where am I again? Harry thought.

‘Harry! Can you hear me?’

What’s that noise? It sounds like someone familiar, but who is it?

‘Maybe we should take him as he is? What do you think?’

There was a pause.

‘Remus?’

‘I-I don’t know. Maybe.’

‘Well we can’t stand here all night…’

‘Sssh! I think he’s waking up.’

Remus… I know that name. Suddenly everything began to come back to him. Sirius…the prophecy… the headline in the Prophet… the vision… Lucius Malfoy bowing down to him… Voldemort telling him to find out about the prophecy…
Harry snapped his eyes open. He was awake.

~~~~~~~ ~~~~~~~~ ~~~~~~~~~ ~~~~~~~~ ~~~~~~~ ~~~~~~~~~ ~~~~~~~~~~
He was lying on the floor in the middle of his bedroom of number four Privet Drive. His head was pounding and his body was shaking from chills. His body covered in sweat and his mouth tasting of sick… he deduced what had happened.

‘Harry, thank god! Are you alright?’ It was Lupin.
‘Y-yeah, I’m ok.
‘What happened?’ This time it was Tonks.
‘Voldemort’ Was all he could manage.

The crowd that had gathered around him seemed to take a collective gasp.
Moody stepped forward holding out a gnarled hand to Harry. He pulled him up right and set him on his feet. Harry swayed.
‘Um, maybe you’ll be better off sitting Harry.’
Harry didn’t complain, he felt awful.
‘What are you doing here anyway?’ he finally managed, whilst being led over to his bed by Moody.
‘To collect you of course.’ Replied Lupin looking concernedly at Harry.
Harry gaped at his alarm clock, it read 00:12. Just how long had he been unconscious?

‘We’ll have to talk about this later Harry, we need to get back to Grimmauld Place, we’re behind schedule as it is. Molly’ll be doing her nut! Do you have all your things packed?’ Lupin asked.

‘Um, yeah. Yeah there over there by the door.’
‘Okay, we’ll take your things Harry. Here’s the portkey,’ replied Lupin brandishing an old looking mirror, with the same concerned look as before.

Harry looked at the mirror. It reminded him of the mirror Sirius had given him last year to talk to him whenever he needed to. If only he had thought to use the mirror to contact Sirius before he left for the Ministry of Magic, Sirius would still be alive today. As Harry stared at the mirror and these thoughts washed over him he had to turn away from Lupin to hide the tears in his eyes that threatened to fall.

Thankfully, Lupin was busy writing a letter to the Dursley’s that he didn’t see Harry wipe his eyes on his sleeve.

‘Right. Ready to go yet?’ Moody asked Harry. Harry nodded then turned to Lupin who was sealing the envelope of the letter.
‘Ready when you are, Moody.’
They crowded around the mirror that Lupin held out to them all. Tonks was carrying Hedwig’s shrunken cage, whilst Moody held onto Harry’s trunk while Lupin gripped Harry’s Firebolt. Harry felt the tears well up again as he out stretched his hand and placed a finger on the mirror, but he fought them back as he felt the now familiar pull behind his navel. He was going back.
~~~~~~~~~~ ~~~~~~~~~ ~~~~~~~~~~ ~~~~~~~~~
Harry landed in a heap on the floor. The portkey had taken the energy that he had mustered earlier out of him as quickly as it came. He looked around, he was in the hallway of Grimmauld Place, it looked the same as before, even Mrs Black’s portrait still hung behind its set of curtains, something Harry thought would have been gone by now, but apparently not.

Suddenly the kitchen doors sung open and Mrs Weasley erupted from them her hands on her hips, ‘Where have you been?! I’ve been worried sick…’
She looked down at Harry on the floor.
‘Harry? What’s wrong? You look awful! What happened?’

Lupin helped Harry to his feet. He was swaying again, and so he headed toward the staircase to sit on one of the steps. Lupin watched him then turned to face Mrs Weasley.

‘It’s ok Molly. Harry’s ok.’ He answered weakly, his face didn’t seem very convincing either.

‘Well he doesn’t look ok Remus! He looks absolutely exhausted! What on earth happened?! Was it those Muggles? Because if it was…’

Lupin held up his hand to Mrs Weasley to stop her rant. ‘No Molly. It wasn’t the Dursley’s. It was Voldemort, we think he had another vision.’

Lupin seemed to give Mrs Weasley a pointed look, who kept turning between the slouching form of Harry on the stairs to Lupin who stood in front of her. A look of realisation dawned upon her face before she motioned Harry to follow her into the kitchen, while the others took Harry’s things and placed them in his room upstairs.

‘Give me Harry’s broom Remus, I’ll take it up for him. You go see how he is,’ said Tonks before heading up the staircase. Lupin nodded his thanks before turning to the kitchen.

Lupin seemed to let out a breath he didn’t realise he was holding before entering the kitchen. Harry was sat to the table drinking some kind of potion that Lupin supposed was to help him feel better, but he realised that it was in fact one of Mrs Weasley’s ‘special potions’ as Harry fell asleep not five minutes later.

‘Molly, what did you give him?’ inquired Remus.
‘Oh just some sleeping draught, I thought he could do with a decent night’s sleep. Why don’t you take Harry upstairs while I make us some tea?’ Mrs Weasley asked.

‘Yes, ok.’ Lupin pointed his wand at Harry and said ‘Mobilicorpus’ Harry’s body levitated in mid-air while Lupin carefully guided him out of the kitchen and up the stairs to his room. He looked around, Ron had taken the bed on the left and was snoring loudly. Lupin continued to guide Harry over to the bed where he pulled back the covers before gently lowering him onto the bed.

He placed his wand in his inside pocket and then pulled the covers over Harry. He looked down at him with something like sympathy in his eyes, perhaps it was just sadness?
He removed Harry’s glasses and placed them on the bedside table before closing the door on his way out.

When Lupin reached the kitchen again, Molly had already made the tea and was sat waiting for him at the table, her hands wrapped around a steaming mug. She looked up at Remus as he approached the table, tears welling in her eyes.

‘What’s wrong Molly?’ he asked although he thought he already knew the answer.
Molly looked at him, her eyes were red from crying and her face was pale from worry. ‘Harry’ she replied. ‘I’m worried about him.’
‘We all are Molly. We all are.’ He said the last part to himself more than to anyone else.

‘What happened Remus? With Harry I mean, today, in Surrey?’ she asked inquisitively. Remus took a sip of tea before answering, he wasn’t sure himself yet, they would need to hear Harry’s account of things first to be sure.
Remus sighed as he thought back to what had happened and began to tell Molly everything.

‘We arrived at the Dursley’s as planned at midnight, when we reached Harry’s room and knocked there was no answer so we went in…’ Remus paused as though composing himself for what he was about to say ‘…when we went inside it was dark, the window was open and we couldn’t see or hear anything. Moody switched on the light and that’s when we saw…’ he seemed to struggle to get the words out as if it was costing him a great effort to continue but he did anyway ‘…Harry was on the floor, unconscious. He had been sick and he was soaked in cold sweat. We tried to revive him but couldn’t so we just had to wait for him to wake up. I didn’t want to move him so we waited instead, it took a fair amount of time but eventually he came back to us…’ at this point Remus took another swig of tea.
‘…When he woke up he was a little dazed, he didn’t realise why we were there or what the time was or anything and when he stood up he almost fell over again, so Moody sat him on his bed while we got his things together and I left a note for the Dursley’s.’

Molly was silently crying unawares that her tea was probably cold by now. They sat for a while in silence just mulling over everything that had happened, before finally retiring to their rooms an hour later.

~~~~~~~~~~~ ~~~~~~~~~~ ~~~~~~~~~~~ ~~~~~~~~~~ ~~~~~~~~~~~ ~~~~~~

‘Harry! Hey Harry! Why didn’t you wake me up when you got here?’

Harry opened his eyes blearily. Someone had removed his glasses. He fumbled along the nightstand before finding them and pushing them up the bridge of his nose. He turned to see who was making all the fuss, it was Ron.

‘Hey. What time is it?’ he asked sleepily. He was so tired he thought he could have slept for a week.

‘Um, 7:30’, answered Ron looking at his alarm clock. ‘So what d’you wanna do first? I’ve got a new chess set, Fred and George brought it for me, with some of the money they’ve made on the shop. Oh you have to see the shop Harry! It’s amazing! They’ve got all these new inventions of theirs. There’s Weasley’s Wopping Wiglets, these wigs that you put on that take on any haircut or colour you want! There’s also these new fireworks they’ve been working on that you can make write things in the air, say your name or some sort of message and it writes it in all these different colours. Then there’s some more Skiving Snackboxes that they’ve perfected so now they’ve got one that makes you projectile vomit and another one that makes you have diaroh-…’

Ron looked over to Harry, he had fallen asleep again. Ron sighed and left the room, he would have to catch up with Harry later on.

Ron entered the kitchen to find his mother already hard at work, slogging over the stove preparing breakfast for everyone. ‘Morning Mum.’

Mrs Weasley turned around. ‘Oh morning dear. Breakfast should be ready in a moment.’ She returned to the stove where the smell of bacon was wafting from.

‘Morning Mrs Weasley, Ron.’ It was Hermione. Her hair looked wild. Ringlets were shooting out all over the place and then falling limply down her back. She was wearing her dressing gown an overly large navy blue one with matching slippers.

‘Morning dear’, called Mrs Weasley from the stove as Hermione took a seat next to Ron at the kitchen table.

‘Have you spoken to Harry yet?’ Hermione asked whilst pouring herself a glass of juice.

‘Kind of.’ Hermione shot Ron a quizzical look. ‘Well, I tried to tell him about Fred and George’s shop but he fell asleep!’ he sounded as if the mere idea of falling asleep whist the conversation was about ‘Weasley’s Wizarding Wheezes’ was outrageous.

Hermione snorted into her drink. Ron looked a her as if to say ‘what?’ to which Hermione rolled her eyes. ‘Ron, you can hardly blame Harry for falling asleep when all your talking about is your brothers’ joke shop!’

‘What?! Harry usually loves hearing about things like that, you know, ‘normal’ things.’ Ron replied dropping his voice to a mere whisper as Mrs Weasley placed a plate full of bacon rashers and fried tomatoes and bread onto the table.

Hermione sighed. ‘Well, maybe Harry’s just tired, let him rest, and we’ll talk to him later ok?’
‘Ok, but he better not fall asleep again!’ Ron retorted. Hermione rolled her eyes.

Meanwhile, Harry was anything but sleeping peacefully…
‘Why Harry? Why do you always have to play the hero?’
‘I’m sorry Sirius. I’m sorry!’
‘Hahahahahahahaha!’
‘NO!!!’

Harry awoke from the dream that continued to haunt him, his scar prickling all the time.

There was a knock at the door. ‘Harry?’

‘C-Come in.’ he asked uncertainly, not knowing if they had heard him yell out in his sleep.

It was Mrs Weasley. ‘I just wondered if you’d like some breakfast, Harry.’

‘Yes please.’ He thought he should be polite seeing as she had taken the time and effort to bring it up to him in bed and all, even if he didn’t feel like eating, just yet.

To his surprise Mrs Weasley wasn’t leaving, she seemed to be looking at Harry strangely and Harry didn’t feel entirely comfortable whilst he was still in bed.
‘Er…’ not really knowing what to say, Harry hoped that Mrs Weasley would say something.

‘Oh, I’m sorry dear. Went into a bit of a day-dream’, answered Mrs Weasley. ‘Well, bring your plate down with you when your done and then I’m sure you’ll be wanting to see Ron and Hermione,’ she smiled to Harry before closing the door behind her.

Harry decided that he might as well eat his breakfast as it would only arouse suspicion if the others noticed that he wasn’t eating properly, and with that he began to dig in.

Outside his door Mrs Weasley was taking deep calming breaths. She had almost broke down in front of Harry! She could never let him see how scared she was for him because then he would be scared too, and that isn’t the way that wars’ are won.

Luckily at that moment she heard a loud bang and then a crash before Mrs Black’s yells could be heard, giving her something to focus on away from the inevitable battle that was to come.

‘FILTHY MUDBLOODS, VERMIN, BLOOD TRAITORS! DEFILING THE HOUSE OF MY FORE FATHERS!! THE HONOURABLE HOUSE OF BLACK!! FILTHY HALF-BLOODS, NASTY, LOATHSOME, FOUL…’

‘Thank God for that! I thought she’d never shut-up!’ came a familiar voice.
‘Wow these things must be really strong if they can shut that old crone up!’ came another voice.
‘Maybe we should put the price up?’
‘10%?’
‘Hmm, no maybe 20%’
‘Yeah, we know people will buy them because…’
‘…everyone buys everything from us!’
Following this there was a roar of laughter followed by the unmistakeable sound of ribs cracking as Mrs Weasley pulled Fred and George into a bone crushing hug.

‘Mum…can’t…breathe!’, they cried.

Ron and Ginny were laughing at the looks of embarrassment upon the twins’ faces. Whilst Hermione inspected what the twins had done to Mrs Black’s portrait. Her mouth looked to be covered in a thick layer of blue paint, but upon closer inspection the substance looked like glue.
‘What did you do to Mrs Black’s portrait?’ she asked.
Fred and George turned toward there handy work, Mrs Blacks eyes were wide with horror, eyeing the group warily yet maintaining a sense of superiority all the same.

‘It’s called… actually we don’t have a name for it yet as it isn’t perfect yet…’
‘…not yet anyway. We wanted a test subject first…’
‘…and Mrs Black was a prime candidate…’
‘…it looks like it works though…’
‘…but we don’t know how long it will last…’
‘…hopefully permanent.’

So far Mrs Weasley had been against the twins’ investment in a joke shop, she was horrified to learn that they had dropped out of school when they told her, and hadn’t spoken to them in a week, that’s before she realised just how successful they had been, and how much money they were making because of it. She was still disappointed that they weren’t going to be taking any N.E.W.T’s but was proud of what they had achieved from their business, and so hadn’t said any more on the subject since.

‘So what d’you think mum?’ the twins asked cautiously.

Mrs Weasley glanced toward the portrait of Mrs Black before sending her two sons a small smile, ‘I think it’s perfect.’ The twins beamed at her, then pulled the curtains over the now mute portrait of Mrs Black.

~~~~~~~~ ~~~~~~~~~ ~~~~~~~~ ~~~~~~~~~ ~~~~~~~~

Harry had managed to eat his breakfast, although barely, it seemed like ages since the last time he had eaten a decent meal.
He walked over to his trunk finding fresh clothes, then headed into the bathroom. He stared at himself in the mirror. He looked a mess. His hair was sticking up in all directions, he looked sickly pale and extremely skinny. It also looked like he had aged five years in his face, his shoulders seemed to be stooped like they had the weight of the world on them… ‘oh wait, I do.’ He answered himself sadly. He began to brush his teeth.

He was just finishing up when he heard two voices down the hall.

‘…what time is he getting here then?’

‘Dumbledore said the meeting was going to be held at two o’ clock.’

‘Right. Giving me enough time to come up with a story to tell Harry and the others so that they don’t get suspicious when everyone starts to turn up.’ Harry recognised the voice. It was Lupin, he sounded slightly annoyed.

‘I know how you feel Remus, really I do. But you know it has to be this way…’

‘Does it really? Because to be honest with you I don’t think it does! Harry deserves the right to know what’s going on! It’s because Dumbledore kept secrets from Harry last year that he ended up in he department of mysteries, for Christ sake!’

‘Remus calm down!’

‘I will not calm down! Not when lives could be at sake!’

Harry heard pounding footsteps retreat into one of the bedrooms, and then the sigh of the second voice, as they began walking back down the steps.

What was that all about? He asked himself. He didn’t know, at least not yet, but what he did know was that it sounded like Dumbledore hadn’t learnt his lesson from last year after all, and he was still keeping secrets from him. Angrily, he stomped back to his bedroom replacing his toothbrush before going downstairs to find Ron and Hermione.

‘Oh look who’s finally up then!’ called Ron from the drawing room, he and Ginny were playing a game of exploding snap whilst Hermione read a book on the couch.

‘Took you long enough, what’ve you been doing?’

‘Nothing really, just sleeping’, Harry replied.

Ron eyed him suspiciously for a moment or two before finally asking, ‘Do you wanna play a game?’ Indicating the snap cards in front of him and Ginny.

‘Yeah ok.’

Ron looked pleased at Harry’s decision to play whilst handing him a new deal of cards. However, Harry couldn’t forget about the conversation that he had overheard upstairs with Lupin. What was Dumbledore keeping from Harry this time? I only hope it’s not another prophecy, he thought to himself as he laid his first card onto the pile.

~~~~~~~~~~ ~~~~~~~~~ ~~~~~~~~~~ ~~~~~~~~~

The day seemed to pass by uneventfully and Harry, Ron, Ginny and Hermione were beginning to get a little bored with being cooped up inside Grimmauld place all day, they longed to play a small game of Quidditch on their brooms, or in Hermione’s case, to play with Crookshanks in the sun and read.

Soon enough it was 1:30pm and they had been called into the kitchen by Mrs Weasley for Lunch. They ate ham sandwiches with cucumber slices and had pumpkin juice to wash it all down with. Mrs Weasley insisted on giving Harry an extra sandwich complaining that he looked ‘peaky’ but Harry was already rather full and so handed it to Ron instead who gladly downed it in one huge mouthful. To which put everyone else off their food anyway, leaving more for him still.

‘Now at 2 o’ clock I want all of you ready to leave for Diagon Alley. I thought you’d all might like to get out of the house for the rest of the day, so we can go to Diagon Alley and get your school things there…’

‘But mum, we haven’t even had our book lists yet, how are we suppose to know what books we have to buy?’ asked Ron.

At first Harry thought that Mrs Weasley had overlooked this and that they weren’t going to be able to go to Diagon Alley after all…

‘Not to worry dear, Professor Dumbledore will be giving them to you before we leave…’ Harry, Ron, Hermione and Ginny looked at each other. Why was Dumbledore coming to personally give them their letters? What was wrong with owling them?

Mrs Weasley however, obviously didn’t notice or chose not to. Harry suspected the latter, something was going on.
~~~~~~~~~ ~~~~~~~~ ~~~~~~~~~ ~~~~~~~~ ~~~~~~~~~ ~~~~~~~~~~

Sure enough at ten minutes to two Albus Dumbledore appeared in a whirl of green flames as he stepped through the kitchen fireplace of number 12 Grimmauld Place. He handed Mrs Weasley the four Gryffindor letters, and had a private word with Remus and Molly before apparating away again.

Harry was glad he didn’t have to see Dumbledore when he arrived, he still hadn’t forgiven him for keeping the secret of the prophecy from him and now he had overheard the conversation in which Lupin was angry that Dumbledore was once again hiding secrets from Harry, Harry had no preference to see Dumbledore.

He started chucking things into his trunk angrily at the thought of him and it was only when Ron returned from the bathroom to see Harry in such a rage that he finally got a weight off of his chest.

‘What’s wrong mate?’ asked Ron with an apprehensive look on his face.

‘Dumbledore’, replied Harry shortly.

Ron looked taken aback at this. He still didn’t know about the prophecy and so didn’t realise the inner turmoil that Harry was mewing over and the hatred he was feeling for Dumbledore at that precise moment.

‘What about him?’
Harry looked up at Ron as if to say ‘Isn’t it obvious?’ but stopped himself before the words left his mouth remembering that he hadn’t got around to telling anyone about the prophecy yet. He knew he had to, that it was bound to happen some time, but not now, he told himself. It would have to keep.

‘Nothing, tell you later.’ Harry replied finally but even as he said it he knew he probably would end up making some excuse and never give him the truth, not yet at least.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Next chapter should be up before monday, anyway, please review!! ;)

Chapter 3: Mixed Emotions
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Here's the 3rd chapter guys, hope you like!! ;)
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At precisely 2pm Harry, Ron, Ginny and Hermione arrived in Diagon Alley via portkey (courtesy of Dumbledore). Whilst Mr and Mrs Weasley, Bill, Charlie, and various other unknown members of The Order were their guard.

They hadn’t had chance to open their Hogwarts’ letters yet due to a sudden Order Meeting, from which the current guard were excused, saying that it wasn’t really all important for them to be there, just a routine meeting of sorts. However, Harry wasn’t buying that story. He distinctly remembered the conversation that he had overheard between Lupin and another Order member and had proceeded to tell the others this, who also found the sudden Order meeting to be suspiciously timed with their having leaving for Diagon Alley.

Harry was pulled from his thoughts however when Mrs Weasley announced that they would be having ice-cream at Florean Fortescues’ and could open their letters there.

Harry regarded his letter nervously. Thoughts kept sweeping through his mind; ‘This letter holds the key to my future!’, ‘What if I didn’t make it into Potions?’, ‘What if I did!’
Taking a deep breath, Harry slowly ripped open the envelope addressed to him, it read:
~~~~~~

Dear Mr Potter,

Enclosed are your O.W.L results.

Please reply by owl which courses you will be taking at N.E.W.T level in order for your book list for 6th year to appear.

Congratulations on your results…
~~~~~~~~

Harry hastily rushed to the bottom of the parchment, not caring who the letter was from or any of the other rare pleasantries of the ministry, he just wanted to know his results.
~~~~~~~
The key to your results is as follows:

O= Outstanding EE= Exceeds Expectations A = Acceptable P = Poor D = Dreadful T = Troll
~~~~~~~
Charms- EE
Transfiguration- EE
Potions- O
Defence Against the Dark Arts- O
Herbology- EE
Astronomy- P
Diviniation- T
Care of Magical Creatures- O
History of Magic- A
~~~~~~~~

Harry stopped reading there, he had all the information he needed. He had somehow achieved an O in Potions and had done well in his other classes too. He didn’t care that he had failed Astronomy or Diviniation, it just meant he didn’t have to listen to Trelawney predicting his untimely death for the next two years!

Feeling slightly happier than he had done in weeks, Harry hastily pulled out the separate sheet of parchment and ticked the boxes of the subjects that he would be taking at NEWT level; all of his previous subjects minus Astronomy and Diviniation.

'Oh my Merlin! I got O's in everything!! How did you do Harry?’ came the slightly squeaky voice of Hermione. Harry turned to look at her. She had a certain glow about her, a glow that could only be used to describe someone who was positively ‘over the moon’ with one’s OWL results.

‘I did good, somehow I managed to get into potions again, I still don’t know how?’ Harry replied whilst handing Hermione his results.

‘Congratulations Harry, these are really good results. Although you did get a T for Diviniation, I don’t suspect anyone got anything better, that lesson is a complete waste of time and Trelawney is the biggest fraud out! Honestly, she couldn’t See anything if her life depended on it…’ babbled Hermione.

Harry had stopped listening. Thinking of Trelawney had reminded him of the ever looming prophecy, and that wasn’t something that he wanted to be thinking about now.

‘So Ron, what about you?’ Harry asked, in an attempt to steer the conversation back to the OWL results.

‘Um, I did well I guess. Here, see for yourself.’ Ron replied whilst handing his results to Harry. With Hermione peering over his shoulder to get a look too.

It read:
~~~~~~~

Charms- A
Transfiguration- EE
Potions- A
Defence Against the Dark Arts- O
Herbology- EE
Astronomy- P
Diviniation- A
Care of Magical Creatures- O
History of Magic- A
~~~~~~~~

‘Wow, Ron! How’d you manage to get an A in Diviniation?’ inquired Harry, while Hermione just snorted.
‘I er dunno. I just guessed in the exam, you know… made stuff up!’ he replied.

‘Well, it seems as though the old fraud thought you must have Seen something! Perhaps you possess the ‘inner sight’ Ron after all!’ laughed Hermione. However, Ron seemed to have grown very quiet.
Suddenly, all of their book lists appeared in their hands, making them all start.

‘Oh good! Now we can go and shop for your new school things,’ came the happy voice of Mrs Weasley.
~~~~~~~~~

‘Merlin! I reckon these books get heavier every year!’ huffed Ron struggling under a small mountain of second hand books. Followed closely by an equally annoyed Ginny.

‘If you want I can shrink them for you and that should make them easier to carry,’ asked Mrs Weasley.

‘Yeah, thanks Mum!’ Ron and Ginny chimed, followed by a chorus of ‘Thanks Mrs Weasley’ from the others.
~~~~~~~~

After stocking up on potions ingredients, parchment, ink, quills, and new robes for Harry and Hermione at Madam Malkins; they decided to go visit Fred and George at the shop.
‘Welcome to Weasley’s Wizarding Wheezes!’ called the twins in unison.
‘Hey Mum, finally decided to come see the shop for yourself then?’ sniggered Fred.

Mrs Weasley was looking disapprovingly at all the new items upon the elaborate shelves. She gave the twins a stern look after spotting a product that claimed to be stronger than Firewhisky in its affects yet un-alcoholic all the same.

‘Well someone has to keep an eye on you two!’ Mrs Weasley scolded.
Fred and George however made their way to where Harry was standing and soon Harry was face-to-face with two enormous mischievous grins.
Harry started to feel uncomfortable. ‘Er, hi guys. Was there something I could do for you?’

Bad question.

The twins’ grins, if possible, seemed to grow even more.
‘Why Yes, young Harry, as a matter of fact there is…
‘…something you could do for us…’
‘…you see, we’re having a hard time with getting volunteers for some of our…’
‘…let’s say more experimental products…’
‘…and we thought that you…’
‘…being our financial backer…’
‘…and the good sport that you are…’
‘…would be the perfect…’
‘…person to…’
‘…ask.’

Throughout this conversation Harry’s head had been flipping left and right to follow, and his head was beginning to spin. In his confusion, he found himself agreeing.

The twins’ faces lit up with mischievous joy. ‘Great! Come with us, you can try some of these…’
George handed Harry a handful of variously different coloured chews. Some were a violent purple colour, (that not even the Knights bus could contend with) others were a light blue and some a sickly looking green. Harry decided that the light blue ones looked the safest.

Fred and George stood waiting with clipboards in hand, ready to record the results of their latest products.

Harry placed the chew on his tongue, when nothing happened, he tentatively began to chew. All of a sudden his vision became blurry and he had to take off his glasses to see. To his amazement, he could! He could see perfectly without his glasses on. He let a soft ‘wow’ escape his lips as he turned to Fred and George who held out a mirror for him to see himself. He looked good without his glasses, and just when he was beginning to get used to the idea of life without the wire-rimmed spectacles, his vision became blurry again and he found himself in need of the glasses again.

‘Wow guys! I’d definitely be buying those if they lasted a bit longer,’ Harry replied in awe.
‘Hmm, some more newt next time I think George,’ said Fred whilst watching Harry’s face turn to horror at the thought of eating something that had newt in it.

The twins laughed. ‘Don’t worry Harry, as if we’d use newt!’ answered George who laughed again at Harry’s sceptical look.

‘I think I’ll try the others another time, thanks,’ said Harry, whilst looking for Ron and the others.
The twins nodded and went back to speak to their mother.

Finally Harry spotted Ron looking at the Skiving Snackboxes section. ‘Hey Ron, what you looking at?’

‘Oh just some Skiving Snackboxes for this year, I have a feeling it’s going be harder than last year, and we might need some…’

‘Honestly Ron, you will not be buying any Skiving Snackboxes!’ Hermione scolded. ‘Did you forget that we’re prefects! What sort of an example is it to set the younger students!’

Ron’s ears had gone bright red, and after replacing all of the boxes back on the shelf, Harry had to suppress a grin over the fact that Ron had done as Hermione had told him to.

‘Hey Harry.’

Harry turned around to come face-to-face with Ginny. She had changed a lot over the summer. Somehow looked more grown up, he started to look her up and down. ‘Wow she certainly had changed over summer!’

Ginny began to blush and Harry realised that he had just been staring at her the whole time, and so eventually he managed a nervous; ‘Uh, h-hi Ginny. How was summer?’

Ginny’s look darkened suddenly and Harry instantly reprimanded himself for asking.

‘Sorry, I didn’t mean…’
‘No it’s ok, I mean he was your Godfather after all…’
Now it was Ginny’s turn to apologise.

‘Oh Merlin! I’m sorry Harry, I didn’t mean to bring all that back up… I’ll just go…’
Harry grabbed her arm to stop her from leaving. To which Ginny turned back around to face him, an apprehensive look on her face.

‘No don’t go. Let’s just talk about something else instead.’

Ginny looked relieved and soon relaxed. She went on to talk about Quidditch, Hogwarts, how this year was her OWL year and she was worried about the amount of work that she would be getting, to which Harry sympathised as he had, had his OWL’s last year and knew exactly what it was like.

‘Don’t worry Ginny, I’m sure you’ll do fine,’ encouraged Harry.

Ginny looked into his emerald green eyes and smiled. It was her first true smile since the end of last term. She’d found Sirius’ death hard as well, but she couldn’t begin to imagine how hard it must have been for Harry. To see him talking to her like this and laughing along to her brothers’ jokes and smiling at her, she couldn’t help but smile back. 'I think I’m falling for you again, Harry James Potter'

Harry noticed the dreamy look in Ginny’s eyes and began to wonder what she could be thinking about. He was just about to ask her that exact question when a series of shouts from outside could be heard. ‘What the…’

‘You lot stay here with Fred and George, do not leave the shop, you understand!?’ shouted Mrs Weasley. The students nodded and then she left.

‘Wands out guys. Stay close and keep your eyes open!’ called one of the twins from behind them. Harry and the others did as they were told, each withdrawing their wands, holding them defensively in front of themselves.
Just then a loud series of Cracks could be heard, and the group suddenly found themselves surrounded by hooded and masked Death Eaters.

‘Well, well Mr Potter, we meet again,’ came the drawling voice of Lucius Malfoy, as he removed his mask.
Harry didn’t say anything, he just gripped his wand tighter in his hand, whilst moving to the front of the group, instinctively pushing Ginny behind him.
Another masked Death Eater spoke up, but it was the last voice that Harry wanted to hear.
‘Aww, has little baby Potter got himself a girlfriend?’.
Ginny blushed, but remained composed.

The baby voice cut through Harry like knives. ‘Bellatrix,’ Harry sounded through gritted teeth.
He was seething with anger, Bellatrix Lestrange was the reason Sirius was dead, the reason Neville’s parents didn’t recognise him, the reason why Remus had lost his best friend.

Before anyone could stop him, Harry had launched himself full pelt at the female Death Eater, knocking her to the ground. Harry pulled at her mask, ripping it from her face, revealing her maliciously black eyes.
Harry drew up his wand ready to strike, but before he could do anything a strong pair of hands pulled him back by the shoulders. He found his arms were soon pinned to his side and his wand taken with a quick ‘expelliarmus’ with it taking the other student’s wands as well.

‘Silencio!’ Lucius Malfoy yelled and Harry’s struggling against the death grip he was being held in became a mute one.
Malfoy sneered at Harry before producing a round ball. He thrust it into Harry’s hands, making him touch it, and before Harry knew what was happening, he felt the now familiar pull behind his naval.

~~~~~~~~
‘NO!!!’ Ron yelled. Lucius Malfoy and Bellatrix Lestrange turned to the distraught teen. Both wore evil smirks.

Malfoy’s cold voice sent shivers down Ron’s spine. ‘Don’t fret. He won’t be killed…yet. My master wants a word with him first…’

Hermione and Ginny had begun to sob, to which Bellatrix cackled. Earning her defiant looks from Fred and George as they stepped in front of the girls.
‘Oh look, Lucius. It’s the Weasley brat twins.’
‘This your place is it?’ asked Bellatrix casually.
Still the twins stared defiantly at the Death Eaters.

‘REDUCTO!’

Suddenly the twins dived for the two girls and Ron, in an attempt to shield them from the falling ceiling. It appeared that the Death Eaters had left as soon as Bellatrix shouted the curse. Most probably to wherever Harry had been taken.

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So that's the 3rd chapter guys, hope you liked it, and don't forget to review!! ;) (The next chapter should be up either monday night or tuesday lunch.)


Chapter 4 preview:
...Sitting in a throne like chair was a pale skeletal figure, swathed in long black robes. His spider-like fingers twisting a long wand between them, and his lipless mouth formed into a menacing smile. Harry looked into his cat-like red eyes that seemed to sparkle with malicious intent.

‘Voldemort’ Harry mouthed before collapsing from the pain penetrating his mind. His ears filled with a cold, high-pitched laugh before his world went black.

Coming soon... ;)

Chapter 4: The Suffering
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Hey guys, this is the 4th chapter, just a WARNING before you read: This chapter contains scenes of violence and mild swearing!! OK, so you've been warned, now enjoy!!
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Harry finally stopped spinning and landed with a thud onto a cold hard floor. His mind was reeling. The silencing spell was still on him so he couldn’t call out to anyone or voice the pain that he was feeling, protruding in waves from his scar. He reached his hand to it and rubbed it vigorously but it was all in vain for suddenly a cold voice sounded from across the room.

‘Welcome Harry, to my home.’

Harry looked up dreading what he knew he was about to see. Sitting in a throne like chair was a pale skeletal figure, swathed in long black robes. His spider-like fingers twisting a long wand between them, and his lipless mouth formed into a menacing smile. Harry looked into his cat-like red eyes that seemed to sparkle with malicious intent.
‘Voldemort’ Harry mouthed before collapsing from the pain penetrating his mind. His
ears filled with a cold, high-pitched laugh before his world went black.

~~~~~~~~
Remus Lupin sat in the kitchen of Grimmauld Place, watching as Severus recounted his last Death Eater meeting. He knew he should be paying more attention to what the former Death Eater - turned spy, was saying but his mind kept drifting to one thing. Harry.

He couldn’t help but feel apprehensive about what he had to tell him. He wasn’t sure if Harry would like the idea or not. After all, Harry had suffered so much loss and heartbreak in his life already, he didn’t want to add to that.

‘Remus, are you even listening to me?’ came the sneering voice of Severus Snape from across the table.
‘Hmm? Oh, yes of course Severus, please continue…’ he answered absentmindedly.
Severus eyed him suspiciously for a moment more before continuing with his report.
‘So as I was saying, the Dark Lord then went onto explain that he is close to succeeding in a plan. Something to do with Lucius Malfoy, however that was all he said on the matter. Headmaster, I think he may suspect me of being a spy…’

Dumbledore surveyed Snape over his half-moon spectacles for a moment before answering the concerned professor.
‘Do not worry Severus, just remain calm and if your suspicions grow then we shall look into the matter nearer the time,’ relied Dumbledore giving Snape a pointed look, to which Snape paled slightly but quickly regained his composure.

Remus raised an eyebrow at this, now what are they plotting? he thought to himself. However, Remus was pulled from his thoughts as a head appeared in the kitchen fireplace.

Dumbledore silenced the room from all conversation as he turned to the head of Molly Weasley in the fireplace. His tone serious.
‘Molly? What is it? Has something happened?’
Molly’s expression was sombre, and Remus felt his breath catch in his throat as he saw tears glistening in the woman’s eyes.
‘I’m afraid so Albus. We were attacked. The children were in the twins’ shop whilst myself and the rest of the guard went to see what was happening outside. However, it was a trick. Whilst we were fighting off Death Eaters outside, the children found themselves surrounded. They destroyed the shop bringing the ceiling down on them.
The children have been taken to St. Mungo’s to be checked out but there’s more…Albus, they took Harry!’
With that Molly broke down in tears and removed herself from the green flames, and in her wake a wave of eerie silence held the kitchen of Grimmauld Place.

Remus turned to Dumbledore. There was no sparkle in his blue eyes, and Remus noticed that he looked older than he had ever seen him before.
he blames himself…and rightly so, Remus thought savagely.

Just then Snape grabbed his left forearm and winced, holing back the pain through gritted teeth. ‘Albus…’
Dumbledore let out a sigh. ‘Very well Severus, it is probable that he is about to alert you of the situation at hand. Do try to learn as much as you can about Harry’s condition and report back to us once you get the chance to, we will then set up a rescue mission.’
Severus gave a curt nod and with a loud CRACK was gone.

Remus couldn’t contain himself any longer, he was beyond angry, he was seething with fury. He had thought it an unwise plan to send Harry and the others away from safety just so they could talk about him in the Order meeting, but at the time he had held back his questioning in respect to Dumbledore, but now that he had learnt he was right and Harry had been taken, probably to be tortured or worse… he couldn’t just stand back and let the headmaster off without him voicing his opinion of him first.

‘HOW COULD YOU BE SO STUPID!’ Remus yelled at the surprised wizard. Causing everyone in the room to stare at him in return. He was shaking with anger and was doing everything to stop himself from launching at the calm old man that stood before him.

‘Remus listen I…’ began Dumbledore, but he was abruptly cut off by Remus’ yelling.
‘NO YOU LISTEN FOR ONCE! Who’s to say what you think is always the best plan of action? Who’s to say that you should always be in charge, Dumbledore. Harry is probably being tortured right now! And it is all YOUR fault!’ stormed Remus.

A collective gasp rang through the group of onlookers, nobody had ever seen Remus loose his temper like this before, and that’s what scared them.

Dumbledore at least had the common decency to hang his head in shame. He knew it was his fault, Remus was right…what had he done? Harry was probably in pain right now because of him, the actions of a silly old man, again he had failed him.

‘Now is not the time for blame Remus,’ growled Alastor Moody. Remus just glared at him before storming out of the kitchen and up the stairs.
‘Dumbledore?’ Moody asked.

Dumbledore slowly raised his head, a single pearly tear had escaped his eye and was now dribbling down through his vast white beard. He wiped it away, and turned to the group. ‘Alastor, go to Diagon Alley. See what you can do to help, or find out where Harry has been taken. It’s a long shot, but we need to start somewhere and it could be a while before Severus returns with any news.’ Moody nodded and left via Floo.

He then turned toward Tonks and Kingsley. ‘Return to the ministry and inform them of the situation, I want a group of Aurors ready to take part in the rescue mission.’
Tonks and Kingsley both nodded that they understood and then dissapparated out of the kitchen.

Lastly, Dumbledore turned to Minerva, who had remained quiet up until now, her eyes were slightly glazed behind her square shaped lenses and she had unshed tears in her eyes.
Dumbledore sighed as he took up the seat next to her, whilst placing a comforting arm around her shoulders.

‘Albus, what if… poor Harry, he’s been through so much already, I don’t think I can bare to see him go through any more…’ whispered Minerva.
‘I know Minerva, I know… that is why, when he is returned I shall tell him the truth.’
Minerva looked at Albus seriously. ‘Really?’
Albus smiled slightly. ‘Yes, I believe it is time he knew who we really are, don’t you, Minerva?’
Minerva smiled back weakly, and nodded. ‘I don’t know how he’s going to take it though Albus. What if he doesn’t want to know us after we tell him? We’ve kept this from him for far too long as it is, do you really expect him to be happy about it?’ Minerva asked.
‘We’ll see Minerva, we’ll see.’ Albus finished soberly.
‘Now I think we should take a trip to St. Mungo’s to see how everybody is,’ stated Dumbledore whilst rising from his chair, and with that they both dissapparated with a POP.
~~~~~~~
Harry didn’t know how long he had been unconscious but it felt like a lifetime ago when he had been in the joke shop staring into Ginny’s eyes.
He gingerly pushed himself into a sitting position, his back pressed against a cold stone wall. His head was swimming; he was so dizzy that his surroundings started to dance around him, taunting him, reminding him of his helplessness.
He tried to stand up but quickly fell back down again with a yelp. ‘Well now I know that the silencing charm has been taken off,’ thought Harry glumly.
~~~~~~

‘Welcome Death Eaters.’ The cold high-pitched cackle of Lord Voldemort rang through the cavernous lair, sending chills down Severus Snape’s back.
He stood towards the back of the ever-growing number of Death Eaters that were the Dark Lord’s followers. He wore his mask and his hood, not wanting to be noticed by too many. However, it seemed the Dark Lord had other plans.
‘Snape!’

Severus inwardly cringed, ‘this can’t be good’
Reluctantly he moved to the front of the crowd, instantly dropping to his knees to kiss the hem of his master’s robes. ‘My Lord.’
‘Ah Snape, my loyal servant.’ Voldemort replied in a cold tone.

There was something about the way he had said ‘loyal’ that made Snape tense up, preparing to be struck with the Cruciatus curse. However, after several moments of silence Severus began to relax a little; well, as much as one can relax as they are kneeling in front of the darkest wizard ever known!

‘Severus, what do you have to report to me?’

Severus racked his mind searching for a scrap of information to give the Dark Lord that would both pacify him, yet not lead the Order into danger.
Finally he thought of something that was important information to the Order but wouldn’t necessarily have any affect if Voldemort happened to know about it.

‘My Lord, Potter has been learning Occlumency…’ Severus began.
‘Yes I know, Severus. It has been increasingly difficult to enter his mind lately…but not impossible.’
Snape was surprised to hear that he already knew, that meant Potter must not be telling them everything, he had to of had another vision recently and not told anyone, stupid Potter
‘Very well Severus, hopefully next time you will bring me more helpful news.’ Voldemort scowled at Snape as he hastily rejoined the back of the ranks.

‘Now, onto more pleasant news.’ Voldemort’s high-pitched cackle ricocheted off the stone walls, once more sending shudders around the room.

‘You will be pleased to hear that are young foe Mr Potter was captured this afternoon, by none other than my most faithful Death Eaters’, Bella and Lucius.’

Snape scanned the room for the two, it didn’t take him long to spot them situated right at the centre-front, both bursting with pride at their Master’s words. Snape returned his attention to Voldemort who had begun talking again.

‘…he’s being held here. Don’t fret, you’ll all get your turn with him, to do as you please, but not until I have had my own turn,’ an enormous evil grin formed on Voldemort’s lipless mouth, making him look even more terrifying than ever, and Snape gave an involuntary shudder at the thought of what Potter may have to endure.

‘So, Lucius, Bella bring our guest up here and let’s see what we can do for him,’ smirked Voldemort, whilst his most faithful disappeared down a side entrance.
~~~~~~~~
There was the sudden sound of footsteps and Harry immediately became alert. Yet there was nothing he could do. He had realised before that he was locked in a cell of some kind, and so without his wand, all he could do was wait. He was a sitting duck.
‘Alohomora’
Harry spun around so fast he cricked his neck making him yelp in pain. The next thing he knew he was being dragged by his hair and one arm across and out of the holding cell, and down a long passage way. He attempted to struggle against the hold but found that it only made the person pull tighter on his hair, so much so, Harry thought that it would soon be ripped from his scalp.
That’s when he saw it.

Situated in his throne-like chair was Voldemort, and surrounding him, in their masses were dozens-upon-dozens of masked Death Eaters. Harry gulped audibly, before being dragged to the front of those gathered. He was thrown unceremoniously at the feet of Voldemort himself.
Gasping for air and holding his aching head, Harry tried to look defiant in Voldemort’s presence but found it increasingly difficult as his scar had started hurting again ever since he entered the room.

‘Welcome back Harry. I suppose you’re wondering why you’re here, or better yet, why you’re even still alive?’ Voldemort asked.
Harry just stared at him, gritting his teeth through the pain he was experiencing because of being so close to his tormentor.

‘Crucio!’ Voldemort yelled.

Harry was thrown back a few feet, his head connecting with the hard stone surface that was the floor. He clamped his lips together, trying to stifle his screams but it was no good, and soon he was flailing on the ground, his mouth open wide, allowing his screams to pass through.
After what felt like forever, the curse was lifted and Harry lay shaking on the ground gasping for air.

‘You didn’t like that now, did you Harry. Maybe next time you’ll answer when being spoken to?’ sneered Voldemort.
‘Now, tell me the prophecy!’ ordered Voldemort, to a shaking Harry.
~~~~~~~~~
‘Crucio!’ Voldemort had yelled.

Snape had watched as Harry was blown back a few feet hitting his head. He cringed as he saw blood start to seep from the back of his head; but there was nothing he could do. If he tried to stop the Dark Lord, then his cover would be blown and he and Potter would probably both be killed. No. There was nothing that he could do, but watch helplessly as the wizarding world’s saviour was repeatedly hit with the Cruciatus curse.
~~~~~~~~~~

Harry was beginning to give up hope that he would be rescued any time soon. He had just been hit by the same curse again, and it wasn’t getting any easier to endure, he didn’t know how much more he could endure, before he passed out again, and when that happened he would be at the mercy of his enemies again, not a good situation to be in.

Harry still hadn’t given in to Voldemort by telling him the prophecy though. However, he knew that it was only a matter of time before he did, anything to make the pain end.

‘One last time Potter, tell me the prophecy, or I hand you over to the Death Eaters. I myself am above such muggle brutality however, that does not mean that I do not allow my servants to enjoy themselves,’ rang Voldemort’s merciless voice.

Again Harry shook his head mutely, as he had done all the other times Voldemort had asked him to divulge the prophecy to him. His throat was so dry and sore from screaming that he had long lost his voice.

‘Very well. You seal your own fate Potter. Lucius, Bella, the rest of you…he’s yours.’

With that Harry felt himself being dragged again, only this time he didn’t struggle, he didn’t have the energy, he had given-up.
~~~~~~~

Snape became uneasy at the fact that Potter was being given freely to the Death Eaters’. It meant that Voldemort didn’t care if Potter was killed. He had to do something and fast, he couldn’t dissapparate with the Dark Lord still in the room, it would be too suspicious. No, but what could he do? Dare he risk his own life to save that of Potter’s?

‘Hmm. Me or Potter? Potter or Me?’he mused.

With a sigh, and a last glance toward the Dark Lord to make sure that he wasn’t watching, Snape dissapparated. Hoping beyond hope that he had left unnoticed.
~~~~~~~~
It was pain beyond pain. Harry felt his ribs crack as another kick was administered to them. He soon found himself spluttering blood between his wheezes. All the while, the Death Eaters’ taunted him over his defeat, but what hurt the most was when Bellatrix Lestrange stepped up and began to taunt him over Sirius’ death and how it was his fault that he had died. Harry couldn’t hold it in any longer, he began to cry.
‘Aww, look little baby Potter’s crying. Do you want your Mummy baby Potter?’ teased Bellatrix, whilst the other Death Eaters laughed.
A fire burned within Harry at the recognition of her words and he found himself yelling, ‘Burn in hell bitch!’
Silence followed and Harry used these moments to try to catch his breath. However, the heavy booted foot of Bellatrix Lestrange came smashing into Harry’s jaw, the pain was unimaginable as he heard his jaw crack, it was definitely broken, possibly shattered from sensing the pain, he was rendered in agony but with no outlet, as he was now only able to moan. This seemed to only make the Death Eaters laugh more, and they soon continued with their assault, battering his already broken body within an inch of his life, before finally leaving him to rot in his agony.
~~~~~~~~~~~~

Severus Snape had apparated back into the kitchen of number 12 Grimmauld Place, to find it brimming with people, it was a miracle that he didn’t managed to apparate on top of someone.
‘Severus!’
Snape turned his head to the left of him. There stood Albus Dumbledore surrounded by ministry Aurors and the rest of the Order. Apparently all awaiting for his own return.
Snape swiftly strode over to Dumbledore and the others giving them a full account of everything that had happened. By the end of his story, most were either too angry or upset for words, and he found himself rolling his eyes at the amount of people that seemed to of joined Potter’s little fan club.

‘Thank you Severus, you should probably return so that your absence goes unnoticed,’ Snape nodded his head and again dissapparated. ‘The rest of you, you know the plan, sweep and search manoeuvre, nobody is to attempt to take on Voldemort himself, for reasons that shall be explained in due course.’

Here, Remus again raised an eyebrow up at Dumbledore, he hated people keeping secrets from him, isn’t that how this whole mess had started, with secrets? However, Remus redirected his focus on the task at hand, Harry.

‘Portus’ muttered Dumbledore. ‘Everyone touch this portkey, and be prepared.’
Remus hastily reached out to the portkey, those that couldn’t reach it, grabbed hold of someone who could. Within a whirl of colour they were away, feeling the familiar pull behind their navels.
~~~~~~~~~
Severus Snape arrived just in time to see Bellatrix administer that fateful blow, he winced as he saw Potter scream in agony, and he knew it must be, and would continue to be. A broken jaw wasn’t an easy thing to fix, and he knew that not even Madam Pomfrey would be able to mend it, it would have to heal on it’s own, the muggle way.

He strode over to the crowd, making his presence known to those around him, occasionally uttering the odd snide comment to keep up appearances, such as; ‘He finally got what was coming to him,’ and ‘Potter is just as arrogant as his father was…’
However, at that moment whatever ill’s Severus thought of the boy, he felt retched that he should have to appear to be so heartless towards the boy whilst he lay, moaning in agony; he could only hope that the Order showed up soon.
~~~~~~~~~~~
‘Azkaban! We’re at Azkaban!’ came the vehement tone from an Order member, who was unknown to Remus.
‘Yes! Weren’t you listening to Severus’ report!’ chided Remus. His anger was getting the better of him again. The Order member backed down and quickly mingled in with the rest of the group.
Remus tried to steady himself, to prepare himself for come what may. He pulled out his wand and headed toward the once Wizard Prison.

The thought of Azkaban brought back memories of the year in which he had taught Defence Against the Dark Arts at Hogwarts, Harry’s third year, and the year in which Sirius had escaped from this treacherous place. He felt the hairs on the back of his neck stand on end as his wolf-like senses kicked in. He could smell blood, and what’s more, Harry’s blood.

His pace seemed to quicken, an the other Order members almost had to run to keep up with him. Being a werewolf did have its advantages. Soon they found themselves in a large cavernous hall. The sight that met them, caused them all to stop momentarily in their tracks.

There before them, lay Harry. He was lying in almost a pool of his own blood. He was trying to stop his laboured sobs by biting his bottom lip, but failing miserably. His cries seemed to echo around them, ricocheting off the stone walls.

Remus was the first to come to his senses and he practically ran across the room to Harry’s side. Upon closer inspection of Harry’s frail state, he had to fight the urge to retch.

Harry’s face was swollen and bruised, his battered limbs hung at odd angles and were covered in dirt and grazes like he’d been dragged for a distance. But the most horrific of his injuries was his jaw, his mouth was gushing blood and it seemed to be hanging loosely off his face almost. Remus gasped at the sight, and tried to fight back angry tears, but to no avail. They slid down his weathered face, before dripping from his chin onto his tattered robes.

He was soon joined by Dumbledore, who had lost the sparkle in his eyes and looked like he was also fighting back tears.
Dumbledore muttered something and a stretcher appeared, he then muttered something else and Harry was levitated gently onto the hovering stretcher.

‘Portus’ Dumbledore muttered, he took Remus’ hand and placed it onto the stretcher. Before Remus realised what was happening however, he felt a pull behind his navel and he was gone in a whirl of colour.
~~~~~~~~~~
The rest of the Order continued to search the area for lingering Death Eaters, but it appeared that after theshow was over, they had all left. With heavy hearts, the Aurors and rest of the Order returned to number 12 Grimmauld Place, when they arrived an uncomfortable silence fell upon the household, a silence that could only be linked to that of horror at what they had seen, and guilt for some, as they had caused it.
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So there's ch4. guys, hope you liked it. I know it was a bit darker than the other chapters so far, but it was something that needed to happen to allow 'the link' to appear in the story, ;) anyway, don''t forget to REVIEW!! Thanks to all those nice people who have done so far, and those who haven't, i'm glad you're reading but I promise not to kill you if you leave a review, yuh know, lol :)

Ch5 preview:
...Harry awoke feeling warm, he felt so tired that he didn't want to open his eyes. That's when it hit him. A seering pain shot through his jaw. The pain was so intense that it made his eyes sting as tears stained his bruised cheeks. A hand swiftly reached out for his own, and he found himself squeezing it like his life depended on it...

EDIT:
Hey guys my PC has been down most of the day, and I haven't had much chance to type up the chapter, but it will be there by tomorrow!! So just incase your wondering where ch5. is later, you'll know that it's still being written... I might manage to get it up some time tonight, I might not, but if not it will definitly be there tomorrow!! Thanks!! :)

Chapter 5: Healing
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Here's chapter 5 guys, enjoy and don't forget to review!! ;)
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Remus arrived in the middle of Hogwarts’ hospital wing, still clutching the side of the stretcher upon which Harry lay.
‘Madam Pomfrey!’ Remus called. He used the levitation charm to carefully move Harry from the stretcher to the nearest bed.
‘Madam Pomfrey!’

Remus placed a calloused hand upon Harry’s forehead. He was running a high fever, yet shaking.
‘Yes Remus, I’m here. What seems to be the prob- Oh my merlin! What on earth happened to him!’ shrieked Madam Pomfrey, obviously unaware of what had transpired over the past few hours.
‘Voldemort,’ Remus answered simply, to which Madam Pomfrey gasped before heading off to her supplies cupboard.

Remus turned back to Harry, he seemed to be slipping in and out of consciousness.
‘Harry? Can you hear me?’ Remus asked tentatively. There was no reply, Remus sighed.

‘Here, tilt his head back while I administer this potion,’ ordered Madam Pomfrey, as she stepped back into the room, revealing a yellow coloured potion.
Remus did as he was told. He carefully lifted Harry’s head and gently parted his lips, allowing Madam Pomfrey to give him the potion.
‘What is it?’ Remus asked as he placed Harry’s head back against the pillows.
‘A potion to help the effects of the Cruciatus curse,’ replied Madam Pomfrey.
‘Oh,’ was all Remus could reply. He had forgotten about the Cruciatus curse, after being so worried over Harry’s physical state.‘That’s probably why he’s shaking so badly,’thought Remus.

After about an hour of potions, charms to heal his broken bones and a few failed attempts to heal Harry’s jaw. Harry lay immobile upon the hospital bed with Remus sat at his side. Madam Pomfrey had retired to her quarters saying that she would check back throughout the night, and only to ask if she was needed. She had even offered Remus to take a bed and when he refused to she instead offered him a calming draught.
‘You really should you know. You look like you could use it,’ she had said.
Remus had declined at first, but soon found himself swigging back a calming draught, under Madam Pomfrey’s watchful eye.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Harry awoke feeling warm, he felt so tired that he didn't want to open his eyes. He went to yawn and that's when it hit him.
A searing pain shot through his jaw. The pain was so intense that it made his eyes sting as tears stained his bruised cheeks. A hand swiftly reached out for his own, and he found himself squeezing it like his life depended on it.
He didn’t know who’s hand it was, but at that moment he didn’t care, he was only grateful that whoever it was, was there.

Soon the person began to speak, but although they sounded familiar, Harry just couldn’t place who it was.
‘Harry? Lie still, ok? And don’t try to talk; you won’t be able to,’ the person let out a sigh. ‘I know it hurts, but you have to lie still, if you don’t, it will only make your injuries worse, just try to relax.’

Harry continued to squeeze the unknown person’s hand. Everything was a blur, and the person’s voice sounded muffled, like his hearing was constricted. He decided to do as he was told though and after being administered a potion, he soon drifted off into a dreamless sleep.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Remus had spent the better part of the night in Hogwarts hospital wing. He struggled to stay awake, his tired, grey eyes remained fixed upon the beaten and bruised form of Harry, who held his hand in a death grip.
He wanted to remain strong for Harry, he knew he had to. He dare not let Harry see him cry, he desperately needed someone, now more than ever, and Remus had decided that, that person would be him.
~~~~~~~~~~~~
Flashback:
‘…Harry will need a new Guardian. Now that he has lost both his parents and now Sirius…’ Dumbledore looked to the weary werewolf who held his head in his hands, whilst perched upon a stiff wooden chair of the kitchen at number 12 Grimmauld Place. It was only a week after Sirius had fallen through the veil.
‘…he will undoubtedly be upset…’
Upset? UPSET! Of course he’ll be bloody upset! We all are! After James and Lily; Sirius was like a brother, a father even, to Harry. Of course he’s upset,’ burst the enraged werewolf.

Dumbledore surveyed his ex-student. He looked haggard and worn, and soon it would be the full-moon. He sighed in resignation, thinking that the conversation he had planned would be best left to another time.
Just as he was about to leave however, he was called back.
‘Wait. I want to,’ came the voice of Lupin.
Dumbledore must have given him a bewildered look because the man started again.
‘I mean, I’d love to be Harry’s new Guardian…if I could?’

Now that he thought about it, Remus knew that it would be what his fallen friends would want; for him to become Harry’s new Guardian.

Dumbledore’s eyes sparkled in the candlelit room.
‘Of course, would you like me to tell Harry, or would you rather..’
‘No. I’d rather tell him myself Albus. It might sound better coming from me,’ answered Remus.
‘Very well, I shall see you soon Remus. Good day,’ and with that Dumbledore left Remus pondering over the best way to break the news to Harry.
End of Flashback

‘Don’t worry Harry, I’m here for you,’ Remus whispered whilst wiping a few stray bangs out of the boy’s eyes.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

The next morning Harry was again awoken by the pain in his jaw.
‘Bloody Bellatrix! She’s going to pay for this!’ Harry thought.

Just as Harry had said this however he felt someone jump awake. It was Lupin.
‘Harry, did you just say something?’

Harry just stared at his ex-professor annoyed. He knew he was incapable of talking to anyone at the moment, of course he hadn’t spoken!

His expression softened however when he realised that his hand was being tightly held by the werewolf. ‘So it was Lupin that held my hand all night? But why? Why was Lupin so worried about me?’Harry thought.

Remus looked at Harry bemused. He could have sworn that he had just heard Harry speak, and then again just after he had asked him, but his mouth hadn’t moved, and he couldn’t if he tried. Madam Pomfrey had strapped it up along with the rest of the boy’s head. Seemingly, Harry was yet to realise.

As if on cue with Remus’ thoughts, Harry raised his free hand and felt his hand connect with a foam-type box that surrounded his head and covered his jaw, completely immobilising it from movement.
He narrowed his eyes in annoyance, the only real part of his face that he was certain Lupin could see.

Remus shook off his thoughts, putting it down to stress and exhaustion.
‘Harry, this -er- box, is only for your protection. We couldn’t have you moving about, making things worse than they already are,’ offered Remus carefully.
‘Yeah, everyone has to protect ‘the-boy-who-lived’, sometimes I just wish I’d never been born,’thought Harry glumly.

Harry was surprised when he felt the hand wrapped in his own let go, as if it had been stung. He looked into Lupin’s eyes and saw a mixture of emotions. He couldn’t understand why, but he saw confusion and concern. However, he was even more surprised to see his only company leave and dash toward the hospital doors without even a glance back at him.
Harry sighed and soon he fell into an uneasy slumber.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Remus didn’t know what was happening. He was now certain that he had heard Harry’s voice inside his own head. However, it seemed as though Harry hadn’t noticed this; Remus was sure that Harry wouldn’t have said what he had heard him say, if he had known he could hear him.

‘Maybe I’m going insane?’ Remus thought drastically, but quickly shook the idea from his thoughts. ‘No. Not insane, but something is wrong. Something’s going on, and I know just the person to ask.’

Soon Remus found himself in front of the stone gargoyle that led to the headmaster’s office. ‘Ice Mice,’ Remus sounded to the gargoyle as it sprung to life and moved a side. He jumped aboard the revolving staircase until he found himself at the top. Before he could even knock however, he heard the calm voice of Albus Dumbledore say, ‘Come in Remus.’
Remus took a steadying breath before turning the handle to the wooden door and entering. He took the chair in front of the desk, of which sat the ancient professor, eyeing him patiently, waiting for him to speak.
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Hey guys, sorry that this chapter is so short but it’s getting late here, and I haven’t had that long to work on this chapter… Anyway, you’ll be glad to know (I hope!) that I’m planning on writing the next chapter tomorrow and adding it tomorrow as well, so you shouldn’t have to wait long, (or at all, depending on when you’re reading this, lol)

For some reason I had trouble writing this chapter, so tell me what you think please, whether you hate it, love it or decide to take on a happy medium, I don’t mind…

Thanks to everyone who has already reviewed and I can only hope that you liked this chapter as much as previous ones… Thanks!
AND don’t forget to REVIEW!! :)


Chapter 6: Revelations and Discoveries
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Hey guys, so this is chapter 6, Harry’s thoughts are written in italics, just so you know. Oh, and please read the note I’ve left at the end, as it’s important! Thanks!! Enjoy!! : )
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‘Albus, I was just in the hospital wing with Harry. He’s awake-’

‘Harry’s awake?’ interrupted Albus.

‘Yes. But the thing is, I thought I heard Harry speak. Only that’s impossible with his jaw at the moment, but I am certain that I heard him say something. Also, quite concerning things as well,’ Remus added in an undertone.

However Albus had heard what he had said as he raised his fingertips, so that they rested upon his chin he asked, ‘What did he say Remus?’

The tired man that sat in-front of him sighed before answering, ‘That he wished he’d never been born, and that he’d get his revenge over Bellatrix Lestrange,’ answered Remus wearily, ‘Oh and he wondered why I would bother to spend the night in the hospital wing watching over him.’

Albus surveyed Remus over his half-moon glasses, ‘You are yet to tell him of your new Guardianship then?’

Remus looked into the headmaster’s twinkling blue eyes, ‘Yes. I haven’t had time to, I haven’t seen him properly…not since…’ Remus broke off, unable to mention the death of Sirius.

Dumbledore sighed. ‘Very well, Remus. You are not the only one who has something to tell Harry.’

Remus raised an eyebrow, ‘What do you mean? Surely he knows about…’ but Remus was cut-off by Dumbledore.

‘I’m afraid not. Harry is yet to learn about myself and Minerva’s…connection to him,’ Dumbledore stood from his high-backed chair to move to the other side of his office where his pensieve sat.

Remus also stood, his temper again rising, ‘But you are going to, aren’t you? You can’t keep Harry in the dark about this, it’s too important!’

Dumbledore had just finished extracting a long silver strand from his temple. He added it to the stone basin, before turning to meet Remus’ eye.

‘I am aware of the information’s importance, Remus. As is Minerva. However, now that this new information has been brought to me, I feel it would be best to tackle one obstacle at a time before unloading all of our secrets upon Harry, especially now when he is in a fragile state.’

Remus nodded his understanding. He knew that Albus was right, Harry probably wouldn’t like the idea of more secrets and lies though. He could only hope that Harry would forgive them.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Harry slept fitfully. In his haste to reach Dumbledore’s office, Remus had forgotten to administer the dreamless sleep potion to him, and now Harry was feeling the effects of that.

‘Tell me the prophecy Potter, and all of your troubles shall end,’ came the high-pitched voice of Lord Voldemort.

‘Never!’ screamed Harry between ragged breaths; the after effects of the Cruciatus curse, still taking it’s toll upon his young body.

‘Crucio!’

Harry’s body convulsed painfully, his very bones feeling as if they were on fire, as a thousand white-hot knives stabbed at his flesh.

The scene changed and Harry found himself in a graveyard, bound tightly to the headstone of Tom Riddle, a piece of material stuffed roughly in his mouth, making him want to gag.

‘B-blood of the enemy…forcibly taken… you will… resurrect your foe,’ came the quivering voice of Peter Pettigrew, cradling his bloody stump of an arm.

‘…bow to death, Harry…’

Again the scene changed.

‘Come on you can do better than that!’ Sirius yelled, his voice echoing around the cavernous room.
The second jet of light hit him squarely on the chest.
The laughter had not quite died from his face, but his eyes widened in shock.

‘SIRIUS!’ Harry yelled. ‘SIRIUS!’

He had reached the floor, his breath coming in searing gasps.

‘Harry there’s nothing you can do - because he’s de-’ Remus started.
‘HE-IS-NOT-DEAD!’ screamed Harry.

Again the scene changed.
‘Very well. You seal your own fate Potter. Lucius, Bella, the rest of you…he’s yours.’

‘Aww look, little baby Potter’s crying. Do you want your Mummy baby Potter?’ teased Bellatrix, whilst the other Death Eaters laughed.

He saw the moment in which the heavily booted foot of Bellatrix Lestrange came smashing into his jaw, he remembered the pain, and he heard his jaw crack, rendering him in agony but with no outlet, he could only moan…

Suddenly, everything went black, and Harry began to panic, but not before he heard a strangely familiar voice that wasn’t connected to his nightmares.

‘Harry, Harry!’

‘I know that voice…Remus!’

‘Yes Harry it’s me, you have to wake-up.’

‘W-wait. How are you in my head?’

‘I’ll explain once you wake-up. Now come on, you have to wake-up!’

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Back in the hospital wing, Remus was sat perched on the left side of Harry’s bed looking worriedly at his newfound Godson. Whilst Professor Dumbledore looked on from the other side of the bed.

Slowly Harry’s eyes began to flutter. They felt heavy, like lead weights had been attached to them, and so he was having difficulty opening them.
‘Come on Harry, I know you can do it, just open your eyes. Please,’ pleaded Remus desperately.

Finally Harry found himself able to open his eyes.

‘Oh thank Merlin! You really had me worried for a while there Harry,’ breathed Remus, once again taking up Harry’s hand, and squeezing it gently.

‘What does he mean?’ thought Harry and to Harry’s surprise, Remus answered him.

‘Harry there’s a few things that I need to explain to you, but before I do, I think I should warn you that I can hear your thoughts,’ Remus replied.
Harry looked shocked to say the least, so Remus decided to continue quickly.

‘First of all, to answer me, you just have to think something and I’ll be able to hear you, ok?’
‘Yeah ok,’Harry answered.

Remus smiled at him before continuing. ‘Right, first of all you’re probably wondering why I was able to enter your mind like I did?’
‘Yeah, how did you do that?’ asked Harry.

I was in Professor Dumbledore’s office when I had a strange feeling come over me. I soon found myself seeing what you were seeing…that’s how I knew,’ replied Remus tentatively.

‘So you saw everything…that I saw as well?’ asked Harry although he already knew the answer.
Remus nodded, his grip on Harry’s hand becoming tighter.
‘But how?’ asked Harry, confused.
‘We are still trying to figure that out ourselves Harry, we shall tell you when we learn more, we think that I can talk to you like this and vice-versa is connected to it as well.’ Harry nodded, he had only just realised that Professor Dumbledore was also in the room.

‘Why were you so worried about me? I mean, why was it so important for me to wake-up…not that I’m not grateful…it’s not as if I wanted to see all of those things again…’ asked Harry, as he fought against his stinging eyes, that threatened to spill tears.

‘I-We were worried how long it was going to last…Harry, I left you in here almost 3 days ago!’ answered Remus with a concerned expression.

Harry’s eyes widened in shock. ‘Three days!’ Harry exclaimed.‘I can’t believe I was out for THREE days!’

‘Harry calm down. You were exhausted, and with good reason! But it was my fault…I should have remembered to give you the dreamless sleep potion, I’m sorry,’ apologised Remus as he turned away from Harry.

‘Why would it be your fault? It’s not as if I was in your care?’ inquired Harry.
Remus turned back to Harry, who could see the torment in his grey pool-like eyes.

‘It was Harry. You were, and you are in my charge,’ He took a deep breath before continuing, ‘I’m your new Guardian, your Godfather, Harry.’

Harry didn’t know what to think, he stared at his ex-professor wide-eyed, and had he been able to, his mouth would have been gaping open as well.

Harry turned away, Lupin? My new Guardian? He still feels like my Professor! Sirius has only been gone a month and they’re already giving me a new Guardian…why? Harry asked himself, before he turned back to Remus who had a pained expression on his face. With a jolt Harry remembered that he could hear his thoughts.

‘It’s ok Harry. I’m not trying to replace Sirius…I never could. As to why…mainly because we think it’s what your parents and Sirius would have wanted…’
‘We?’ questioned Harry, narrow eyed.

At this Remus turned to Dumbledore, who up until now had been watching the one-sided conversation inquisitively. Dumbledore stepped closer to Harry’s bedside and locked eyes with him for a moment before answering Harry’s question.

‘We, being Remus, myself and Professor Mcgonagal,’ answered Dumbledore carefully.

‘What’s this have to do with Professor Mcgonagal? I mean, I know she’s my head of house, and part of the Order, but what’s she have to do with this?’ asked Harry.

Remus looked uncomfortable and just as Harry thought he was about to answer him, Madam Pomfrey came bustling into the ward, followed by a hoard of people with red hair.

Remus sighed as he told Harry that they would continue the ‘conversation’ later, he gave his hand a last squeeze before he turned and left with Dumbledore.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Harry spent the rest of the afternoon in the hospital wing surrounded by the Weasleys and Hermione, who had come to visit him. Everyone was fine, only the twins had received injuries really, but were rather fond of having slashes on their limbs and had asked that they not be healed with magic, much to their mother’s chagrin.

However, due to Harry’s inability to speak to anyone, he found himself listening to all of Fred and George’s plans to re-build the shop and the products that they would be making soon; Ron talked to him about Quidditch and how well the Chudley Cannons had been doing lately; Hermione talked excitedly about all of their up-coming NEWT classes, and how she couldn’t wait for the first assignment, much to Ron and the twins disgust.

Mrs Weasley had been the worst though. She had insisted that when Harry was well enough, she would be first in line in the attempt to fatten him up and hug him as she couldn’t do so now.

After what seemed like forever, everyone left the infirmary, leaving Harry with a pile of get-well-soon cards and his thoughts.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Remus had returned to Grimmauld Place to freshen-up and get some of Harry’s things, for he would probably be in the hospital wing for another week or so. He was thankful when the Weasley’s had arrived; he almost had to tell Harry what he had promised he wouldn’t, or at least not yet.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
After another week had passed, Harry found that he no longer needed the ‘box’ and could speak, although it still caused him pain every now and then, he wasn’t about to admit this to anyone though, out of fear of being bed-ridden for the rest of July. So now he stared out of the infirmary window, longing to be allowed out onto the grounds in the sunshine, he was beginning to think that if he got any paler people would mistake him for one of the ghosts!
Harry’s thoughts drifted to the coming week. Soon it would be his birthday and he wasn’t sure if he was looking forward to being sixteen or not. Sure, it meant that he was only another year away from when he could use magic freely and learn to apparate, but turning sixteen brought new responsibilities and problems. The prophecy would surely be playing some part in the events yet to come, Harry thought sadly.
He hated being ‘the-boy-who-lived’, and from what he had deciphered from the prophecy, he might soon be ‘the-boy-who-died!’ He shook his head at the thought of the prophecy; staring determinedly out the window, he didn’t notice that he had company.

‘Hello Harry,’ came a familiar voice.

Harry turned around to see Remus stood in the door way, he looked better then he had done last time Harry saw him, but his eyes gave him away; they looked haunted, as if they had seen too much. Harry turned away from the man, regaining his determined stare.

Footsteps could be heard approaching, but Harry didn’t move. Not even when he felt the man place a hand on his left shoulder.
‘Harry, please look at me.’ It was not a command.

Grudgingly, Harry slowly turned away from the window. His emerald green eyes locking with soft grey ones.

Remus sighed. ‘I’m sorry I haven’t been to see you this week, I wanted to. We’ve had Order meetings and…’
‘I don’t want to hear your excuses Lupin,’ Harry interrupted coldly. He knew it wasn’t Remus’ fault, but he felt a kind of sadistic pleasure in taking out his fury upon his newly appointed Guardian.

Remus looked hurt and he removed his hand from Harry’s shoulder.
Just as he was about to leave, something Harry said stopped him in his tracks.

‘Funny how everyone around me dies, you’d think people would stop trying to get close to me by now, for their own good,’ Harry said savagely.

‘How can you say that Harry? You know how many people care about you, how many love you. I love you!’ Remus surprised even himself by his own words.
‘I don’t believe you! You say you love me but you’ve kept secrets from me, you still are!’ rounded Harry.

Remus looked dejectedly at Harry. ‘I know, and I have no excuse, only that we thought it was best at the time…’
‘All this WE business, when are you going to do something for yourself? If you’re my Godfather then surely it should be your decision!’ fumed Harry.

Remus didn’t know what to say to the enraged teen. He had a valid point, ‘Why don’t I ever take charge of the situation?’ he asked himself.
But before Remus could think any more on the topic, Harry had started again.

‘And another thing, last week, when you and Dumbledore were in here and you mentioned Mcgonagall having some say in all of this…what were you going to say? You know, before the Weasley’s came?’ inquired Harry, now only feet away from the young werewolf.

‘That is something between yourself and Professor Dumbledore. It is for him to tell you,’ replied Remus cautiously. He knew that Harry wouldn’t accept that answer, but he had to try.

‘Argh! I am so fed-up with all of these secrets!’ Harry huffed, ‘When is everybody going to stop treating me like a little kid!’
‘I know you’re frustrated Harry, but it isn’t my place to tell you. It’s Dumbledore’s,’ replied Remus.

As if on cue, the hospital doors swung open and Professors’ Dumbledore, Mcgonagall and Snape, followed by Tonks, Kingsley, Moody and Mr and Mrs Weasley entered.

Harry looked from Remus to the people who had just entered, before telepathically sending ‘Well, now I can ask him can’t I?’ to Remus.

Remus sighed before sending back; ‘He isn’t going to tell you with everyone else here as well. Even you know that.’
Harry ignored him and directed his attention back to the headmaster.
‘Good to see you up and about Harry,’ began the ancient wizard. However, Harry was having none of that, he wanted to get straight to the lies. ‘What haven’t you been telling me Professor? Remus said that it wasn’t his place to tell me, and that it was yours.’

The other Order members looked to the old man then to Harry, wondering what he was talking about.

‘I’m afraid now is not the time to be discussing this Harry…’ he began. Harry looked to Remus, almost daring him to say ‘I told you so’ but he didn’t. He just looked sadly at Harry; the look that Harry had grown accustomed to lately, he hated that look, the look that said they pitied him, or felt sorry for him. He hated having people’s sympathy.

‘Fine! When you decide to tell me, you know where you can find me, my dead Godfather’s house,’Harry added in his thoughts, forgetting that Remus could hear him.
‘Harry! Don’t talk like that! We all miss Sirius, believe me, we do!’

The other occupants of the room looked strangely at Remus, obviously realising that they had missed something.

However Snape, realising the situation, decided to add his own sneering remark, ‘You should be more grateful Potter, not everyone gets to have TWO parents, and TWO Godfathers!’ Snape spat.
Harry leapt from his bed, startling everyone in the room, and he began yelling angrily at his potions professor.

‘WHAT IF I DON’T WANT ANOTHER GODFATHER! WE ALL KNOW WHAT HAPPENED TO SIRIUS BECAUSE OF ME! YES ME! YOU ALL KNOW IT WAS MY FAULT, SO STOP DENYING IT! No-one will ever replace Sirius!,’ Harry yelled, although he wished he hadn’t as it had hurt his jaw. He began to rub it as he listened to Remus’ reply.

‘Harry, I know I’ll never replace S-Sirius… I don’t want to. I just hope that you’ll allow me to be part of your life, someday,’ the teary-eyed man said sadly before beginning to turn away from Harry.

It was too much. Harry could no longer hold back the tears as he began to sob freely, not caring who heard, or who saw. He just wanted to be consoled. Remus, upon noticing Harry, quickly turned back to him.

‘I’m sorry Remus, I didn’t mean it. Of course I want you as a Godfather. Thank you,’ whispered Harry.

Remus stared at him for a moment, supposedly deciding if what he had just heard was real or not, before he pulled him into a loving embrace.

The other occupants, suddenly feeling like intruders, decided to leave the two alone for a while.

Not knowing what to do at first, Harry stood stiffly against Remus, but once he breathed in the familiar scent, he found himself loosening against him and he nuzzled his head into the neck of Remus’ robes, not wanting to let go as his tears drifted down his cheeks.

Remus guided them both towards the nearest bed where he pulled Harry into his lap.
The boy didn’t resist against the gesture so Remus pulled him tightly to his chest as he laid back against the headboard. His hand finding its way through Harry’s unruly hair, stroking it softly.

They stayed like that for hours, Remus hugging his Godson close, thankful that he had been accepted by Harry. While Harry clung to Remus’ robes desperately seeking warmth from another; his Godfather. Both managed to sleep peacefully the whole night, each finding what they needed in the other; closure.

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Hey guys, hope you liked this chapter and that you weren’t too confused when I was trying to explain ‘The Link’, lol. I really like this chapter, probably because of the way it ends, but I’ll leave you to review what you think!! : )

BTW, Something that I wanted to ask you all was:
Do you prefer long or short chapters?
This being because it seems to take me an unnaturally long amount of time to write these chapters and being the busy person that I am, lol, I wanted to know which you prefer?
If most of you decide short chapters, then chapters from now on will be around 1,000-2,000 words in length and you can expect to see updates almost every-other day, e.g. Mon, Wed, Fri, Sun?

If you decide that you prefer long chapters, then chapters from now on will be 3,000 words plus, and you can expect updates every Wednesday and Sunday?
(Barring this week as it is half-term, where updates will be often and irregular)
So, don’t forget to REVIEW and tell me which you would prefer, and I’ll go on a majority vote! Thanks!! ~Sam.


Chapter 7: The Reading of the Will
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Hey guys, Happy Halloween! So this is the 7th chapter! Enjoy and don't forget to review!!!
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The next morning the sun shone brightly upon the grounds of Hogwarts and the castle’s inhabitants awoke to a blissful summer breeze and a cloudless blue sky.

Remus smiled at his Godson, who was sleeping peacefully in his arms. He was surprised the staff had allowed them to remain like they had for the whole night; he was almost certain that Madam Pomfrey wouldn’t have been pleased, insisting that her patient needed rest.

However, if anyone were to look upon the sleeping teenager’s face, they would see not a worry, and perhaps even the benign trace of a smile. It seemed as though for once, Harry was able to sleep the whole night without being disturbed by nightmares of his past, and the thought of this brought a soft smile to Remus’ lips. ‘He looks so peaceful,’ thought Remus.

He pulled Harry tighter to his chest, being careful not to wake him as he did so, before gently resting his own head back against the headboard, and again falling into a blissful sleep.
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Harry awoke later that morning feeling better rested than he had done in weeks. He was surprised at first to find himself being held in an embrace by his sleeping Godfather, before he remembered what had happened the night before.

‘I wonder what’s going to happen now?’ thought Harry to himself.
‘What do you mean?’ came another familiar voice inside Harry’s head, making him start and nearly fall off the bed.

Harry spun around to face Remus who was now awake, wearing an amused smile at Harry’s reaction.

‘Remus! Don’t do that!’ Harry exclaimed whilst catching his breath back from the shock.
‘Sorry, couldn’t resist… so what did you mean?’ asked Remus.

‘Huh?…Oh, I was just wondering what was going to happen now that you’re my Godfather, like will I still have to stay with the Dursley’s next summer…you know, stuff like that…’ answered Harry sheepishly.

Remus thought for a while before letting out a small sigh. ‘I don’t know yet, Harry. Lets just take things one step at a time huh? Like what do you want to do for the rest of the summer?’ Remus asked, obviously unsure of the answer to Harry’s question himself.

Harry shrugged. ‘I guess I have to return to Grimmauld Place soon…well that’s if I’m ever allowed to leave this infirmary! Honestly, I think I should have my own bed here or something, you know, with a reserved sign over it, ready and waiting!’ exclaimed Harry.

Remus chuckled lightly at Harry’s outburst, but he instinctively pulled Harry tighter to him at the thought of him being hurt…again.
‘I’m sure Madam Pomfrey will allow you to leave soon. Why don’t you ask her today. You are looking a lot better, although you still look pale,’ Remus frowned.
Harry rolled his eyes. ‘Of course I look pale! It’s from being cooped-up in here for so long! When can I go out onto the grounds? I really want to get back on my broom again…’

‘I thought Umbridge banned you?’ interrupted Remus with a knowing look.
Harry looked crestfallen, ‘Oh yeah… I forgot, but that means I’ll never be able to ride my broom again! AND it’s a Firebolt! and not just any Firebolt, either… Sirius gave it to me!’ Harry moaned.

Remus flinched a little at the mention of Sirius, but remained composed all the same. ‘Not to worry. I’ve already spoken to Dumbledore, he’s agreed to drop the ban, and all of the other ‘education decrees’ set by the high inquisitor,’ laughed Remus.
Harry let out a sigh of relief, ‘Thanks!’ he replied hugging Remus, who returned the gesture.

‘You’re welcome Harry, but… don’t make me regret it, I don’t want to see you fighting with Malfoy again, okay?’
Harry silently groaned, holding himself back from punching Malfoy could be difficult. ‘Okay.’

‘Good, now I…’ started Remus.
‘Wait a minute. What do you mean see?’ Harry interrupted.
Remus smiled. ‘Well I was going to wait until the start of term to tell you, as a sort of surprise, but I guess I could tell you now…’
‘What? What surprise?’ asked Harry eagerly.

Remus laughed at Harry’s excitement. ‘Dumbledore’s asked me to return as Defence Against the Dark Arts teacher…What do you think?’
Harry beamed. ‘I think it’s a great idea!’ Once again hugging Remus.

Remus smiled whilst roughing-up Harry’s already unruly hair. ‘I’m glad you’re okay with it, Harry,’ Remus started, pulling Harry away so that they could face each other, ‘I would have declined if you weren’t…’
‘Well, there’s no need to decline is there? I’m happy for you Remus. Plus this way, we’ll get to see more of each other, won’t we?’ Harry interrupted whilst smiling happily.
‘Yes. Yes we will,’ Remus replied smiling.
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A few hours had passed since Remus had told Harry that he was to be the new Defence teacher, and since then Harry had once again fallen asleep soundly in Remus’ arms.

Albus Dumbledore stood in the hallway, about to enter the hospital wing, but on his approach he was stopped by Minerva, who held him back to point-out what she had seen. Peering around the door Dumbledore took in the scene of Harry being held protectively by Remus, and he allowed a smile to grace his lips as his eyes twinkled. He turned back to Minerva who had much the same reaction and nodded his head to her.

‘Ah Remus. I wonder, could I have a word?’ Dumbledore asked quietly from the doorway of the hospital wing.

Remus nodded silently, not wanting to wake Harry. He had been asleep most of the day, so he assumed that he must be exhausted, and not quite as healed as they thought.
He crept off the bed as quietly as he could, before striding over to his now fellow staff.

Dumbledore beckoned him out into the hallway, closing the hospital door behind him. Remus looked around and noticed Severus and Minerva waiting there for him as well.

‘I was wondering if you had, had chance to talk to Harry yet about your plans for this summer?’ inquired Dumbledore.

‘Actually, it was Harry who broached the topic. However, I think he’s reluctant to want to return to Grimmauld Place after… well, after what happened. He didn’t want to return their before, but he did. So I suppose if we have to I could…’ Remus began.

‘No, if Harry does not wish to further remain at Headquarters, then Harry and yourself are quite welcome to remain at Hogwarts for the rest of the summer. That is, if you wish to?’

Remus thought about the proposition. He would definitely prefer to remain at Hogwarts rather than to return to the former home of his late friend, but what about Harry? Would Harry want to remain at Hogwarts. ‘Well, he mused to himself, he certainly doesn’t want to go back to the Dursley’s and he’d prefer not to return to Grimmauld Place’…he had made his decision.

‘I’ll check with Harry first, but I’m sure he’ll agree to stay in the castle until the start of term,’ Remus finally answered. Dumbledore smiled, his blue eyes twinkling behind his half-moon glasses.

However, Snape sneered at Lupin, determined to put a damper on the werewolf’s day.
‘Letting Potter run your decisions now, are we Lupin? You should be careful, soon you will be allowing Potter to cloud your judgement as well…’

‘Severus,’ Dumbledore sounded in a warning tone. ‘Perhaps you would be kind enough to fetch the house elf named Dobby? I’m sure Remus and Harry are quite hungry, and I know Dobby would be most pleased to see our young Mr Potter.’

Remus ignored Snape’s menacing glare and he returned his gaze to Dumbledore.
Snape’s lip curled at Lupin, before he turned on his heel, his robes billowing after him as he turned down the corridor that led to the kitchens.

‘Was there anything else Albus?’ Remus asked.
Dumbledore’s expression turned sombre before he spoke. ‘Yes Remus, I’m afraid there is. The matter of Sirius’ Will needs to be dealt with… he has left both you and Harry something. I shall leave it for the two of you to read alone, as you are the only beneficiaries,’ replied Albus, as he produced a black envelope from the inside of his robes, handing it to Remus, who had gone into a type of trance at the mention of having to broach the subject of Sirius’ death to Harry.

‘Remus? Remus, are you alright?’
Remus shook his head slightly to reveal the concerned face of Dumbledore, who was still holding the envelope out to him.

‘Y-Yes I-I’m fine. Thank you,’ Remus replied, finally taking the envelope from Albus’ outstretched hands. Still in his trance-like state, Remus entered the hospital wing to find Harry sat-up in bed awaiting his return.

‘There you are! I was wondering where you- Remus? Remus, what’s wrong?’ asked Harry fearfully.

Remus looked up at the worried teen, before making his way across to him. He sat down in the chair next to the bed, and with shaky hands, handed Harry the black envelope.

Harry looked at him questionably, but soon realised that he wasn’t about to answer his questions, and so he turned his attention back to the envelope.

When Harry recognised the messy black scrawl on the front of the envelope, that was addressed to himself and Remus, he almost dropped the letter in shock. He slowly ripped the envelope open, before pulling out a single piece of parchment, he read it out loud for Remus to hear;

Dear Harry and Remus,
If you are reading this, then I have gone and got myself killed, something you said I always would end-up doing Remus, I should have listened to your advice more often.

To Remus, my dear-old friend, I leave:
.Half of all Black family financial funds,
.Grimmauld Place*,
.Buckbeak and Kreacher,
.Various items that I have placed in a labelled box, which you will find in the attic of Grimmauld Place.

To Harry, my dear Godson, I leave:
.Half of all Black family financial funds,
.The flying motorbike*,
.Various items that I have placed in a labelled box, which you will also find in the attic of Grimmauld Place.

It is also my wish that Remus Lupin become Harry Potter’s Godfather in my stead. Should there be a problem with this arrangement, or it is not possible, then custody should then be given to Albus Dumbledore and Minerva Mcgonagall.

Items Labelled (*):
Grimmauld Place: Do with this place as you wish. Continue to use it as HQ or burn it to the ground, I will not be the slightest bit offended. However, I hope someday that you will both be able to live together, and Grimmauld Place, although not pretty, could make a good start for you both.

The Flying Motorbike: Harry, be careful on this thing! I want Remus to teach you how to use it first, but then have fun! You too Remus! I know you’ll never admit it, but deep down we know there’s a thrill-seeker in there somewhere… deep, deep down.

Both of you take care. I don’t want you to mourn my death. There’s too much of that already going on, with the war and what-not. So instead, I ask that you celebrate the happier times in my life, when we were together, as family should be.

I know that you’re both probably blaming yourselves over my death, (I know you too well!) but don’t! It wasn’t anybody’s fault, except whoever held the wand that struck me down.

Harry, I know you will have a role in what is yet to come of this war. Don’t give-up hope. I know that you can win, and know this: There are many people in this world who are still good. Although, it may not always seem like it; there is still good in this world, and to me Harry, you are the core of that goodness, and Voldemort is the core of evil. Don’t despair; good will triumph over evil!


I love you both with all my heart,
I’ll be watching you,

Love,
Sirius.


Harry looked up from the parchment, tears rolling down his pale cheeks. He looked over to Remus, who was silently crying as well. After what seemed like an eternity to Harry, the silence was broken by a POP. Both Harry and Remus started, and looked to see what was the cause of the popping sound.

They both relaxed however, when they realised that it was Dobby carrying two trays full of food for them both. Dobby was as usual, wearing most of the socks and other clothes that Hermione had knitted for the house elves that cleaned Gryffindor tower, in an attempt to free them. Harry still hadn’t got round to telling Hermione that it was Dobby taking all of the clothes.

Harry wiped his eyes on his sleeve. ‘Hello Dobby.’
‘Harry Potter Sir. Is something wrong Sir?’ Dobby asked after noticing that Remus was still transfixed at the Parchment that Harry had laid on the bed, tears escaping his eyes.

Harry looked to Remus and then back to Dobby. ‘No it’s ok Dobby. So, what’ve you got there?’ Harry asked indicating the two hovering trays of food, in an attempt to change the topic.

Dobby didn’t seem convinced, but he didn’t pres the subject any further. ‘Dobby has brought Professor Lupin and Harry Potter some lunch Sir. Professor Snape came to tell Dobby that Professor Dumbledore asked me to Sir.’ Replied the house elf in a squeaky voice.

‘Thanks Dobby,’ answered Harry. Dobby levitated the two trays so that they hovered in mid air in front of them both to eat. Then with another POP Dobby was gone.

Harry and Remus ate in almost silence, neither wanted to talk about the Will and so nobody did; at least until Harry became annoyed with the everlasting silence and decided to see if Remus wanted to talk.

‘Remus, about the Will…Sirius said that he didn’t want us to mourn him…’ Harry began cautiously.

Remus raised his head to look at Harry. He seemed weary, beyond tired, more exhausted. It was then that Harry realised just how much Remus must miss Sirius, and being the last of the Marauders couldn’t help; Peter didn’t count.

Remus sighed. He wanted to be able to do as Sirius asked; to celebrate his life, but right now he didn’t feel in the celebrating mood. However, after seeing the longing on Harry’s face, he found that he should at least try, if only for Harry’s sake.

‘I know. I’ll try,’ Remus answered with a weak smile.
Harry smiled back at him.
Harry feeling encouraged to go on began again, ‘So what’s this flying motorbike I’ve inherited?’

Remus’ eyes lit-up a little at the mention of Sirius’ bike. He reminisced to Harry all the adventures and tales of the Marauders, long in to the night. Telling of how Sirius’ bike had been his pride and joy, and how he allowed Hagrid to use it to travel with Harry to Privet Drive, after the attack on him and his parents.
It was then that Harry remembered the dream he used to have when he was younger; that he had flown on a flying motorcycle, he realised that it must in-fact of been a memory.

It seemed as though Remus was starting to feel better since he started talking about the days of the Marauders, and all their adventures.

‘Thank you, Harry,’ Remus said quietly, after many more hours of story telling.
Harry looked at him confused. ‘For what, I haven’t done anything?’
Remus smiled at his Godson. ‘You have Harry. You’ve pulled me from my despair over Sirius’ death, and allowed me to confront it and accept it, and for that I thank you,’ Remus answered pulling Harry into an embrace.
Harry hugged him back, but didn’t say anything, not wanting to spoil the moment.

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Ok, so what did you think?? Most of you who reviewed, wanted the short chapters with regular updates, so that's what i'm going to do... BUT you'll be happy to know, that because today is Halloween, I've decided to be nice and give you TWO chapters!!! lol

The next I have already started and so should be up later on today, so look out for that one too!!

Thanks to everyone who has reviewed so far!! I really appreciate it, as that's the reward of writing this!! :)

So don't forget to READ AND REVIEW!! lol ~Sam.

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This is for 'pink_dragon10'...
Chapter Preview:

...Harry helped himself to large portions of peas, carrots, potatoes, Yorkshire puddings and pork. Remus handed him the gravy boat before he began to dig in.

Remus watched with amusement as Harry attempted to stuff a whole Yorkshire pudding into his mouth.
‘Feeling hungry are we, Harry?’ Remus laughed.
Harry swallowed his mouthful and grinned before returning to his plate.
Remus rolled his eyes before returning to a conversation with Professor Sprout who sat on his right...

Coming real soon!! lol ~Sam.

Chapter 8: Seeking the Truth
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CH8 GUYS! Thanks to all my kind reviewers so far! You’re the best! Read and REVIEW!!
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The next morning, Harry and Remus were awoken by Madam Pomfrey entering the hospital wing. ‘Morning, and how are we feeling today Potter?’ she asked.

Harry explained how he felt normal and asked if he could leave the hospital wing. Madam Pomfrey had frowned at his paleness and shrilled about how thin he was, to which Harry frowned; he didn’t think he looked that thin.

After attempts from both Harry and Remus, Madam Pomfrey had finally allowed Harry to leave, on the condition that he didn’t over-exert himself with such things as flying on his broomstick, much to Harry’s dismay. Remus smiled and thanked Madam Pomfrey before helping Harry collect his things together.

‘So where are we going to stay? I mean, do we have to return to Grimmauld Place?’ Harry asked quietly.
Remus gripped Harry’s shoulder before answering, ‘Not if you don’t want to. Dumbledore’s given us both permission to stay here at Hogwarts for the rest of the summer, we could stay in my quarters, as there’s a guest room,’ Remus replied.
Harry smiled. ‘I’d love to.’
Remus returned the smile as he led the way to his quarters.
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The rest of the morning Harry and Remus talked about the start of term and how Harry couldn’t wait to start Quidditch again. Remus explained how during the full-moon Moody would be filling in, Harry laughed at the thought of Malfoy’s face when he realised he was going to be taught by Moody, after the whole ferret scene in their fourth year.

At lunchtime they decided to go to the Great Hall and join the other staff members that were staying in the castle over the holidays.

Harry noticed that a single table lay set-up, as it had done during his third year at Christmas. Remus approached the table and Harry followed slightly behind, feeling slightly nervous being the only student.

‘Remus, Harry. How nice of you to join us! Do take a seat,’ Dumbledore welcomed, his eyes twinkling.

Harry took a seat between Remus and Professor Flitwick, but soon wished he hadn’t as he realised that he was directly opposite Snape. Snape’s lip curled at the sight of Harry, but Harry ignored him not wanting to make a scene in a room full of teachers.

Harry helped himself to large portions of peas, carrots, potatoes, Yorkshire puddings and pork. Remus handed him the gravy boat before he began to dig in.

Remus watched with amusement as Harry attempted to stuff a whole Yorkshire pudding into his mouth.
‘Feeling hungry are we, Harry?’ Remus laughed.
Harry swallowed his mouthful and grinned before returning to his plate.
Remus rolled his eyes before returning to a conversation with Professor Sprout who sat on his right.

After everyone had finished their lunch and had a helping of dessert, (twice in Harry’s case) the plates were all cleared and the table’s occupants began to talk amongst themselves; everyone but Snape that was, who announced that he had been put-off his food by Harry earlier, and had retreated back to his dungeons half-way through the meal.

Harry listened to the conversations around him, sometimes catching the odd bit of information about the Order and the war.

‘…Arthur’s been busy at the ministry I hear. Of course now that the truth is out about you-know-who, the public is outraged that Fudge failed to believe Dumbledore’s word. Arthur’s heard rumours of their being a new minister of magic!’ Harry eavesdropped from Flitwick who had recently joined the Order.

‘Yes. The ministry certainly have their hands busy with Fudge’s incompetence,’ replied Professor Vector, who Harry had learned from Hermione; taught Ancient Runes.

Harry turned to the head of the table to find Professor Mcgonagall who was in the middle of a whispered discussion with Dumbledore. Harry felt slightly unnerved to notice that they would occasionally look down at him; he didn’t like it when people talked about him behind his back.

Just as Harry was about to air his opinion though, he felt a hand on his shoulder. Harry turned to see Remus staring at him intently.
‘Are you ready to go?’ Remus asked, eyeing Harry oddly.
Harry nodded, now feeling the full-affects of eating too much.
Remus made his goodbyes and left the hall, Harry following closely behind.
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Harry walked silently back to Remus’ quarters, allowing his thoughts to consume him, as he began to question certain events that had happened over the past few days.

Remus noticed Harry’s quietness and decided to ask him about it once they were free from prying eyes.

Harry almost walked passed the door to the room he was staying, and it was only when Remus realised this and helped him into the room that Harry realised that he hadn’t been watching where he was going.

‘Is something wrong Harry? You seem distracted,’ asked Remus concernedly seating himself in an armchair. Harry decided to remain standing.

‘I saw Dumbledore and Mcgonagall whispering to each other, I think they were talking about me. Do you know what they were talking about?’ Harry asked.
‘That’s Professor Dumble…’ Remus began.
Harry rolled his eyes, ‘Well?’ he interrupted.
Remus saw the steely determination in Harry’s eyes and was instantly reminded of the same look that James sometimes wore. He sighed.
‘I don’t know Harry. You will have to ask them that question,’ Remus replied. Although he spoke softly, there was a note of finality to his voice, stating that the matter was closed.
Harry decided to let the matter rest for the moment, but he would find out what was going on and soon.
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Later that evening Harry didn’t feel like going to the Great Hall for dinner, telling Remus that he had ate far too much at lunch to possibly be able to eat anything for dinner. Remus had seemed sceptical and even offered to stay with him in his quarters, but Harry insisted that he would be fine, and so reluctantly Remus left for the Great Hall.

Once Harry was sure that Remus was out of sight, he raced over to his chest and pulled out the Marauders Map and his invisibility cloak. He was going to get to the bottom of this mystery once and for all.
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Once Remus had entered the hall he had been met with an awkward silence, which caused him to raise an eyebrow. However he was not entirely surprised.

‘Either I’ve just walked in on something I shouldn’t have or you thought I’d be bringing Harry with me, and you were all talking about him?’ asked Remus curiously as he gazed at the occupants of the table.
Dumbledore was the first to speak.

‘Where is Harry? Won’t he be joining us for dinner?’ Dumbledore asked.
Remus turned his attention to his employer. ‘No. I’m afraid not, he thought he had, had rather enough to eat at lunch, or at least that’s what he told me. He suspects something you know.’

Dumbledore nodded his head as Remus took a seat next to him. ‘Yes. He’s very perceptive. However, perhaps a little too perceptive for his own good?’ answered the ancient headmaster, a soft twinkle in his eye.
Remus laughed. ‘That he is.’
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Harry crept down the stone steps into the entrance hall. The invisibility cloak hung securely over his body, hiding him from view. A glance at the Marauders Map told him that Professors’ Dumbledore, Mcgonagall, Sprout, Flitwick, Vector and Remus were already seated at the lone table. Quietly he snuck through the open doors into the Great Hall.

Harry made a B-line for Remus and his headmaster, hoping to catch a morsel of information over what they were keeping from him.

‘I plan on telling Harry as soon as I can be sure to get a moment with him alone,’ said Dumbledore.
‘Yes. I really wish you would Albus. I hate to keep secrets from Harry; he asked me about it this afternoon in fact,’ Remus replied.

‘What did you say?’ Dumbledore inquired.
‘Not the truth. Well, the half-truth I suppose. That it was for you to tell him Albus, and of course you too Minerva,’ Remus added.

Dumbledore nodded his understanding. ‘I appreciate your patience with an old man Remus. I didn’t want to burden Harry with more information. I had planned to tell him yesterday, but then the business of Sirius’ Will, had to be dealt with and so I lost my opportunity. How are you both? I know Sirius and yourself were very close Remus, no-one can deny that,’ Dumbledore asked tentatively.

Remus bowed his head. ‘We’re dealing. Harry has been really mature about the whole thing. I’m really proud of him. He even helped me with my grief over the loss of Sirius. I’ll be forever grateful to him for that,’ Remus answered with a soft smile.
Dumbledore patted his hand against Remus’ shoulder comfortingly.

Harry, who had been watching the exchange raptly for clues of the mysterious secret that everyone seemed to be hiding from him, felt tears spring to his eyes as he heard the pride in which Remus spoke with about him.

He was soon pulled from his thoughts however when he felt someone bang into him.
Slowly Harry turned around, as he felt someone roughly pull the cloak from over his head. He found himself staring into the glittering black eyes of Severus Snape.

‘Well, well. What do we have here then?’ Snape sneered, ‘Are we eaves-dropping on other people’s conversations Potter? Not very Gryffindor of you, I must say… no, I recall cunning and slyness to be a trait of Slytherin…’

‘That’s enough Severus,’ Dumbledore spoke calmly but firmly.

Snape sneered at Harry before turning on his heel, heading toward the doors again, but just as he reached the doors he called, ‘Accio cloak!’

The invisibility cloak flew from Harry’s grasp into the out-stretched hands of Snape. ‘I’ll be keeping this Potter until the start of term!’ Snape bellowed before leaving the once again silent occupants of the hall.

‘Harry? What were you doing under the cloak? I thought you didn’t want any dinner?’ Remus asked.

However, Harry turned his attention to his headmaster and replied, ‘I came to see if I could find out what everyone’s been keeping from me. You know I hate it when people talk behind my back, keeping lies and secrets! I thought this would be the best way, seeing as no-one seems to be able to just come-out and say it!’ Harry stormed, his temper rising.
All the while keeping his gaze fixed upon Dumbledore. For he wasn’t really angry at Remus, just frustrated, and he didn’t want to loose the person that he had become so close to over the short amount of time that they had spent together, and he knew that his anger could ruin it for he both of them, and so he kept his gaze fixed upon the ‘old man’ that had sworn to protect him and yet kept so much from him, and that he felt a burning desire to lash out at the calm old face; yet he kept his emotions in-check all the same.

Dumbledore gave a small sigh. ‘Quite understandable, Harry. An old man’s mistake. Now, come with me and I shall tell you what I should have told you long ago,’ Dumbledore requested, rising from his seat and beckoning for Harry, Mcgonagall and Remus to follow.

Harry didn’t like the sound of learning about this new information anymore. ‘What if it’s another prophecy?’ he questioned himself.
‘Don’t worry, Harry. Come on,’ came the soothing voice of Remus inside his own head.

Harry took a deep breath before proceeding to follow the small group from the hall, to the second floor where they stood before the stone gargoyle that guarded Dumbledore’s office.

Remus laid a re-assuring hand on Harry’s shoulder, for which Harry was grateful. He didn’t know what type of information he was about to be given, only that it was obviously very important.

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Hey guys! So that was the 8th chapter! Sorry it wasn’t added with the 7th as promised, but I got caught-up with other things and so delayed… Anyway, it’s here now, so I hope you liked it!!
I’m aware not a lot really happened in this one but I needed to use this chapter to set-up for the next, so I hope you understand if you found this one a little boring…
The next certainly won’t be though… ^_^
Anyway, Please Read AND REVIEW!! : ) ~Sam.

Expect the next chapter Wednesday evening!! ~ Where you’ll finally learn what the BIG secret is!! lol



Chapter 9: Fateful Words of Power
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So here’s CH9 Guys! Thank you to all of my wonderful reviewers! I really enjoy reading all of them, and love to see what you all think!!
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Upon entering Dumbledore’s office, Harry felt his stomach flip and erupt into nervous butterflies. He really had no idea at all what it could be that Dumbledore and the others were going to tell him. Once again he felt a hand on his shoulder as Remus guided him into a seat in front of Dumbledore’s desk.

‘Are you ok Harry?’ Remus asked telepathically.
Harry turned his head to look at Remus who had taken the seat next to his own. ‘I’m just a little nervous is all. I’ll feel better once everything is out in the open,’ Harry replied, returning his gaze to Dumbledore who was speaking in hushed tones with Professor Mcgonagall.

Remus nodded and cleared his throat loudly in order to indicate that they were still there and waiting for them to begin. Dumbledore finished his conversation with Minerva and she too took a seat, the other next to Harry.

Dumbledore slowly took-up his seat behind his desk, and peered through his half-moon glasses at the occupants of the room, or more accurately; at Harry.

‘There are a number of things of which we need to discuss Harry, and so I must ask that you please, not interrupt. There will be a time for questions afterwards,’ Dumbledore began. Harry only nodded, his attention now rapt as he waited for Dumbledore to continue.

‘Firstly, I suppose I should explain this curious ‘link’ that you seem to have forged between yourself and Remus. At first, we were unaware of it, but it seems that it has only made it’s appearance now, due to recent circumstances.’

‘After the death of Sirius, you were left without a Guardian and I approached Remus in the hope that he would take up the position in your life. To which he gladly accepted, as you know. However, we were not aware of what could happen when you both came to accept each other as Godfather and Godson.’

Dumbledore sighed.

‘There is an old myth Harry, that up until now was thought to be nothing more than that; myth. It is said that when a person is a werewolf, they are unable to fully commit themselves to love another human, as it is beyond their capability. That is partly why werewolves are seen as untrustworthy, dark creatures.’

Harry turned to Remus who had a glazed look about him. He then returned his attention back to Dumbledore who continued to explain.

‘I am not saying that werewolves are unable to love another, Harry. They are still human, all but during the cycle of the full moon, and so still hold human emotions. Now, the myth is rumoured to have been influenced by a…prophecy...’

Harry shifted uncomfortably in his seat, but remained listening attentively.
Dumbledore had paused at the mention of a prophecy, awaiting Harry to say something, but when he remained silent he swiftly continued.

‘… the prophecy is said to have been predicted by the great Seer Madame Martoix, who lived in France and came from a long line of famous Seers, that have since died out due to the dark wizard Grindelward.’

‘The prophecy spoke of a werewolf that would defy society’s view, come to the aid of others as an act of redemption and would go on to be rewarded with the ability to love another fully, that which is said to be a true werewolf’s most hidden desire, according to myth.’

Dumbledore paused, allowing his words to take affect before beginning again.

‘We believe that Remus is the werewolf in question, as the next part of the prophecy proves.’
Here Dumbledore turned his attention to Remus who stared knowingly into the headmasters blue eyes that had turned sombre since he last spoke. Remus nodded his head yes, as if in silent confirmation for the man to continue; and so he did.

‘The next part of the prophecy is slightly disconcerting and I already have the Order members working on a solution to the problem. The prophecy continues: After the werewolf has his reward, a new power will be formed that will link him to his most beloved, but the link will overthrow all and chaos will ensue.’

The end of Dumbledore’s speech was met with an awkward silence as the adults gazed between themselves and Harry nervously, contemplating what had been said, and what the teen’s reaction would be.

Harry didn’t know what to think. He felt slightly confused, and he didn’t want to think about what the prophecy made by Madame Martoix meant by this ‘link’ allowing ‘chaos to ensue’. Harry shuddered at his muddled thoughts.

Remus sat staring at his hands. He didn’t need to look-up at Harry to realise what was running through the boy’s head. He could hear every thought and sense his feelings as well. He was pulled from his thoughts however, when Dumbledore began to speak again.

Out of the corner of his eye, Remus could see Harry looking at him worriedly, as though expecting something to happen any minute. Remus sighed before returning his attention back to Dumbledore.

‘As I mentioned before, I already have most of the Order researching into this matter and so you needn’t worry in the time being, either of you.’
Remus smiled weakly whilst Harry just nodded, seemingly mulling things over in his mind.

‘Now, we have other matters to discuss. Harry, whilst you are here during the summer holidays, I feel it would be beneficial for you to continue occlumency with Professor Snape,’ Dumbledore announced.
‘But Professor Snape threw me out of his office! He won’t agree to…’ Harry began.

‘He already has. Your first lesson will take place this Thursday evening, after dinner, in the dungeons. Now, to other matters. As you know, Remus will be teaching Defence Against the Dark Arts this year, with Alastor Moody assisting him during the time of the full moon. I wanted to let you know Harry, that this year fifth years and above will be given the opportunity to attend a duelling club, that will be run by various teaching staff, members of the Order and perhaps some Aurors from the ministry.’

‘Also, you will find that you are time-tabled extra Defence lessons this year, along with your friends Mr Weasley, Miss Granger, Miss Weasley, Mr Longbottom and Miss Lovegood as well. After what happened at the Department of Mysteries; we feel that it is best to have you all fully prepared, as anyone of you could find yourselves in a situation, not unlike what you have already suffered this summer Harry,’ Dumbledore stated calmly yet firmly.

Harry nodded, letting all of the new information sink in, yet the new prophecy and how it might affect himself and Remus played on his mind throughout.

‘Do you have any questions Harry?’ Dumbledore asked suddenly, pulling Harry from his reverie. Harry looked into his professor’s blue eyes, they were twinkling at him yet not at their full strength, that’s when it hit him.

‘Yes. There’s something else isn’t there? Something you’re not telling me still… that includes Professor Mcgonagall and you?’ Harry asked eyeing the teachers in the room curiously.

Dumbledore surveyed Harry seriously as he rested his long wizened fingers against his chin. Finally he answered. ‘Yes Harry, there is. Something I probably should have told you in your first year here at Hogwarts, but I feared for your safety should the information of been leaked in someway, and found it’s way back to Voldemort.’

‘In order for you to understand fully, I must explain a brief history to you. Of course, you know of the four founders of Hogwarts, Godric Gryffindor, Rowena Ravenclaw, Helga Hufflepuff and Salazar Slytherin. You also know that Tom riddle is the heir of Slytherin. What you don’t know is whom the other heirs are.’

Harry shifted once again in his seat, he wasn’t sure if he liked where this was heading.

Dumbledore continued. ‘I myself, am of ‘pureblood’ decent, as is Minerva. As you may already know Harry, all pureblood families are related. When I first learnt of the prophecy that could have been either Neville or yourself, I researched both of your family trees. Although you are what is considered a half-blood, (as your mother was muggle-born) the Potter family is as old as any other pureblood family… Do you see where I am headed with this Harry?’ inquired Dumbledore quietly.

Harry shook his head no before answering, ‘I know that the pureblood families are all related in some form, and that the founders of Hogwarts were all pureblood in descent. What I don’t understand is what this has to do with me?’ Harry asked unsure he really wanted to know.

Dumbledore turned to Minerva, who returned his gaze and gave a slight nod.

‘Professor Mcgonagall and myself were both in Gryffindor during our time at Hogwarts, we are both descendants of Godric Gryffindor, but alas, our time is almost done and there is a new heir to his powers.

Minerva and myself are related through marriage. You Harry, are also related to us. I am your great uncle on your father’s side, and Minerva is your great aunt.

‘Harry, you are the heir of Gryffindor and the heir to his powers,’ Dumbledore announced leaving Harry awestruck at the sudden revelations.

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Hey Guys! So that’s CH9! I hope I didn’t disappoint any of you with what you thought the ‘Big Secret’ was!?! : )
Anyway, I’ll update again on Friday night!
Don’t forget to REVIEW!! Thanks! ~Sam.

EDIT: lots of people have asked about the connection between DD and Minerva; So here go's: DD + Minerva are married (in this fic anyway!) and are related to Harry on Jame's side of the family (not Lily's as she is muggle born.) Nobody really knows about or talks about DD + Minerva's relationship as it is kept quiet so that people like Voldie and DE's do not use her to get to DD. During the story, there may be vague references to their relationship, but so far (upto ch 18) there have been none, and I'm not planing any... so If you don't like the relationship (i'm not fond of it myself, lol) it was just one of those things that I needed to do in orderfor the story to progress (plot wise) and it will probably NOT be mentioned ever again, lol. Hopefully, that cleared a few things up for people, feel free to comment any further questions :)~Sam.


Chapter 10: Happy Times
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‘Harry?’ Remus asked concernedly. Harry had been sitting staring at the floor for nearly five minutes and the other occupants of the room were growing steadily more concerned over how he had taken the new information.

However, Remus had been able to hear Harry’s thoughts the whole time. He could tell he was confused and that he was slightly angry about the information of him being the heir to Godric Gryffindor being kept from him, but Remus also sensed something else. Something that worried him; guilt.

He wasn’t sure why Harry would feel guilty, what did he have to feel guilty about? He hadn’t done anything, what was he thinking? Suddenly, it clicked. Harry was thinking about the prophecy, about the link. Remus sighed, got up from his seat and made his way over to him. He knelt in-front of where Harry was sitting.
Harry’s eyes remained focused on the floor.

‘Harry, please look at me.’ It wasn’t a command.
Remus took Harry’s hands in his, and Harry slowly looked into Remus’ pleading eyes.
‘Harry you have nothing to feel guilty about, you know that right? You had no control over this prophecy, about this ‘link’ between us. Frankly, I like the idea of us being connected… ’ Remus began.

‘How can you say that, Remus?’ Harry interrupted, ‘The prophecy said that, ‘the link will overthrow all and chaos will ensue.’ How is that good?’ Harry asked weakly, tears glistening in his emerald green eyes.

‘I meant I like being connected to you, Harry. This link we don’t know what it means exactly yet, but what we do know is that you and I have formed a closeness between each other because I love you. What Dumbledore failed to mention, is that for the prophecy to be fulfilled, you must feel the exact same way too, and that makes me the happiest werewolf on the planet!’ Remus smiled at Harry, who was smiling back at him.
They were a family.
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That evening Harry and Remus slept soundly, a small smile on both their faces. Finally, they would both have what they always wanted. The chance to feel loved and to love someone back. Neither had forgotten about the last part of the prophecy but neither wanted to think about that for the time being.

Harry had thought that if Ron could see him acting all soppy around Remus he would have laughed his head-off at the pair, but Harry didn’t care. Nothing could bring down his good mood.
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‘Harry. Come on wake-up, time for breakfast,’ Remus called.
Harry gave him a sleepy, ‘Coming.’

Remus rolled his eyes and proceeded to try and wake him up, he eventually id but only after physically levitating him out of the bed using the levitation charm.
‘Hey, no fair!’ Harry moaned as Remus lowered him gently onto his feet. Remus only laughed at him as he took in Harry’s appearance. His hair was as unruly as James’ would be when he first awoke, and he was wearing a large baggy T-shirt and shorts, that Remus supposed used to belong to Dudley.
‘Hmm. Maybe we should go into Hogsmeade today and but you some new clothes?’ Remus suggested.

Harry’s eyes lit-up. ‘Really? You mean I can leave the castle!’
Remus smiled at Harry’s enthusiasm over something so small as going to Hogsmeade, but then he realised that it probably was a bigger deal to Harry than he could possibly imagine, and the thought of this only made his smile grow wider as he nodded his head to Harry.
Harry whooped before running over to his trunk to get some clean clothes.
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The two made their way down to the entrance hall where the smell of sausages, bacon, toast and coffee wafted through the air from the Great Hall.
Remus sat in a seat opposite Minerva and next to Filius, whereas Harry sat on the other side of Remus and next to him sat Professor Sprout. Snape it seemed, had decided to skip breakfast, much to Harry’s pleasure.
‘So Harry, Minerva began placing her mug of coffee on the table, ‘Do you have any plans or ideas for Quidditch this year?’
Harry raised an eyebrow at her confusedly. ‘Um… what do you mean Professor?’ he asked.
Minerva smiled warmly at him, something that was uncommon of the formidable old witch. ‘Well, you’ll have to make some soon, Mr Potter. What with being the new Quidditch captain and all,’ Minerva finished watching Harry amusedly as his mouth dropped open in shock.
‘M-Me? Quidditch captain? For real?’
Minerva nodded taking a swig from her mug. ‘Yes Mr Potter, for real.’
Harry turned to Remus who was grinning broadly at him. ‘Congratulations Harry!’ he replied patting him on the back.
Harry didn’t think today could get much better.
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Remus had asked permission from Dumbledore during breakfast, to take Harry into Hogsmeade; who had agreed on the condition that they be back before dark and never separate from each other. So now they were walking through Hogwarts’ grounds each talking animatedly about Harry being made the new Gryffindor Quidditch captain and what they plan on doing in Hogsmede for the day.

‘Well, I hear there’s this new store in Hogsmede that makes robes and also sells a few Muggle items as well, although it meant for when wizards need to disguise themselves in the muggle world; I’m sure we’ll be able to find something you’ll like,’ Remus informed a practically buzzing Harry.

Harry couldn’t remember feeling so happy; he was finally outside of the confines of Hogwarts, he was with his new Godfather whom he loved, he had been made Quidditch captain, and he was finally going to have a wardrobe to be proud of! He imagined what Dudley would think if he ever saw Harry wearing nice new clothes and burning his hand-me-downs, as that’s what he planned to do with them; burn them!
Harry smiled as they entered the wizard village. He couldn’t remember a time when he had visited Hogsmeade and it hadn’t been snowing, it looked quite different in the summer; with the shops bathing in un-filtered sunshine and a gentle summer wind that swept through their hair.

‘Hair…I should probably get my hair seen to. When was the last time I bothered to have it cut?’ Harry pondered, once again forgetting about the connection between himself and Remus.
Remus smiled at Harry’s thoughts as he turned to look at him. ‘You’re right. It is getting a bit long,’ Remus sent telepathically to Harry, making him start.
‘Remus! Don’t do that! And anyway, I like it long, I just want it tidied-up a bit,’ Harry answered. Remus smiled. ‘So you’re going for the punk look?’
‘Punk?’ Harry laughed at Remus, ‘Hmm, maybe,' Harry teased.
Remus raised an eyebrow, but didn’t reply, as they came to the clothes store.
‘Ah, here we are.’ Remus announced. Harry looked up at the sign above the store. It read: ‘Dennison’s wizard and muggle attire.’
‘I can see a lot of thought went into the name of the shop,’ Harry scoffed.
Remus rolled his eyes as he went to push the old-fashioned door open, Harry soon followed.

Harry was surprised to see the large range of clothes that the shop had to offer. From where he was standing, he could see, every-day wizard robes, dress robes, fancy dress clothes, muggle suits, children’s clothes, underwear, swim-wear, coats and jackets and a whole section on mismatch muggle clothing. Harry shook his head smiling; wizards never were going to understand what muggles wore.

He was pulled from his thoughts when he noticed Remus looking at a muggle bomber jacket that was a luminous orange colour. He watched as he tried it on and gazed at himself in the mirror, Harry thought it made him look like he had more muscles than Arnie Schwarzeneger! Harry burst out laughing and replaced the jacket on the hanger as he took hold of Remus and led him over to where the wizard robes were.
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At 5pm Harry had finished his shopping and had managed to find a few muggle tops that fit well that had various logos on them. He also brought some plain coloured wizard robes, a new set of dress robes (just in case), some underwear, some new shoes (that they realised were hidden at the back of the shop) and so ended up buying some trainers as well, and finally a few sets of trousers and a jacket.
Harry had also managed to get a haircut at Madame Boudoue’s salon, and he had insisted that it be kept long in length, but that she trim the fringe and dead-ends. His hair was almost down to his shoulders and so pulled it back into a low pony-tail. Remus had agreed that the new look suited Harry, but Harry had heard him ‘think’ that he reminded him of Sirius slightly.

By the time that they had returned to Hogwarts the sun was about to set, and Remus said that if Dumbledore caught them walking in so late, that he would say it was Harry’s fault for being too picky over his choice of clothes, as he couldn’t see what was wrong with the orange bomber jacket when he had suggested it. To which Harry snorted before continuing towards the entrance hall.

‘Ah there you are, Harry, Remus,’ Dumbledore welcomed warmly as they entered the Great Hall for an early dinner, having felt exhausted after all their shopping. ‘How was the shopping trip?’ Dumbledore asked them, his eyes sparkling in the light.
Harry proceeded to tell the Headmaster, or rather his great-uncle, all about the clothes store showing what he had brought to the now crowded dinner table as more and more teachers filtered in.
‘Well, I’m glad you enjoyed yourself Harry. You haven’t forgotten that today is Thursday have you? and that after dinner you have your first Occlumency lesson with Professor Snape?’ Dumbledore asked. Harry visibly gulped, he had completely forgotten what with all the excitement of the day, he knew his happiness wouldn’t last.
‘No Sir.’ Harry answered somewhat glumly, to which Dumbledore chuckled lightly.
‘Don’t worry Harry, I’m sure you’ll have gotten better, what with having the summer to practice…’ Dumbledore began.
Again Harry gulped, he hadn’t had chance to practice Occlumency, of all things! He had been too caught up in his emotions over Sirius and the prophecy to worry about Occlumency.
Harry nodded to Dumbledore, as he excused himself from the table and headed toward the dungeons, dreading what would come.
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Hey guys, so that was CH10! I just want to say sorry about how long it took me to post this, things came up and I found myself at the bottom of a list of to-do’s! lol Anyway, it’s here now so I hope you liked it, if your getting worried about the pace of the story, then don’t worry as it will soon pick-up in one or two more chapters… : )
Thanks to all my lovely reviewers! I really appreciate your compliments and thoughts!
So, don’t forget to REVIEW!! lol : ) ~Sam.


Chapter 11: An Evening With Snape
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Harry approached the dungeons nervously, he didn’t want to be having extra lessons with Snape, and Occlumency was hardly ‘fun’. He knocked gently on the door to Snape’s office and entered after he heard Snape call, ‘Enter’ in an annoyed tone.

Snape was sat behind his desk, hunched over a stack of papers that Harry guessed may have something to do with the Order, seeing as the school term hadn’t started yet, and so he wouldn’t have any papers to mark. Snape only looked up at Harry once he had shut the door; which he had done as quietly as he could, not wanting to anger the pallid-faced man.

Snape shuffled his papers before replacing them in his desk draw, he then stepped around his desk and came to face Harry, his wand already drawn.

‘So Potter, I doubt you have bothered to practice Occlumency since our last meeting, and I will be highly surprised if you achieve anything in tonight’s,’ Snape sneered, whilst twiddling his wand between his fingers; obviously itching to curse the boy that stood before him.

Harry refrained from answering back at him, he knew it wouldn’t do him any good. Snape’s black eyes glittered at the lack of his response before continuing; ‘On the count of three then… one…two…three…Legillimens!

Harry hadn’t been prepared. He had only just managed to remove his wand from his pocket before Snape had thrown the curse at him. His memories suddenly started to flood his mind. The room and Snape had disappeared from view, and now he was watching a scene from his past at the Dursley’s.

Uncle Vernon was yelling at Harry for accidentally turning his cousin’s hair blue, to which Harry at the time, didn’t know how he had managed to, and he soon received a clip around the ear before watching his past self being thrown into the cupboard under the stairs. The memory changed and he was much older, in his third year to be exact, and hundreds of Dementors were closing in on him and Sirius, his patronus charm failing him. Again the memory changed and he was in the department of mysteries.

‘No. I don’t want you to see this, I want let you!’ Harry’s mind screamed as he desperately tried to push the memory back into the recesses of his mind, where it belonged. The memory faded and Harry found himself on his back in the middle of Snape’s office, panting for breath.

‘Get up Potter! That was pathetic. Although you eventually managed to stop the memory, you waited too long and you got yourself in such a state, that I could have hit you with the curse again before you recovered and you would have been powerless against it. Get up!’ Snape ordered.

Harry dragged himself to his feet. His scar was prickling and his head swimming with dizziness, he really didn’t want to try that again, but he knew Snape would make him.

‘Remember, clear your mind of all thought and emotion. Ready?’ Harry nodded numbly, desperately trying to clear his mind of all thought. ‘One…two…three…Legillimens!’ Snape hollered, and again Harry began to see flashes of his past before his eyes.
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‘Remus, are you alright?’ Minerva asked suddenly.
Remus who had remained in the Great Hall whilst Harry went to his occlumency lesson, had grown steadily silent as the conversation around the table grew, and for the last ten minutes or so he had developed a headache that was steadily growing worse.

‘I’m fine, just a headache Minerva,’ Remus answered absentmindedly. ‘I think I’ll go have a lie down or something until Harry gets back from occlumency,’ he announced as he rose from the table and left the hall. He didn’t notice the concerned whispers that followed, between Minerva and Dumbledore.
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Remus staggered into his quarters suddenly feeling a lot worse. He felt light headed and dizzy, which was unexplainable, seeing as he had just managed to eat a rather large dinner. He slumped into a chair beside the fire, that sprung to life as soon as he entered the room. He decided to sleep the headache off, hoping that it would go away soon, so that he could spend some more time with Harry before he went to bed.
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Snape let out an annoyed sigh. ‘Potter! You’re not even trying! Get up, and try again! This is the last time!’

By now, Harry’s fourth attempt, he felt doomed to failure, but once again he pulled himself to his feet with the help of Snape’s desk, and prepared himself for what was to come.

‘Legillimens!’ Snape called.

Harry once again began to see flashes of memory before his eyes. This time he began to see the moment when Dumbledore told him of the prophecy. He pushed with all his might, to stop Snape from seeing that memory. He didn’t want anyone else to know about it, especially not Snape! Suddenly, his vision cleared and he found himself in Snape’s office again, who was looking at him strangely.

Eventually Snape recovered, and his expressionless mask reappeared donning his face. ‘So, it seems persistence does pay off,’ Snape muttered. ‘That will be all for tonight Potter. Same time next week, and I will know if you have been practicing or not, now remove yourself from my sight!’ Snape yelled, before turning back to his desk, where he once again removed the papers from the drawer.
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Harry walked slowly along the corridors, his head hurt so much he felt like he was going to retch from the pain emanating from his scar, but still he trudged along, back to Remus’ quarters.

He used the cool, stone walls for support, his knees hurt from constantly falling to the hard floor, and he didn’t think they could withstand his weight much longer. Finally, he made it to the door that led into his and Remus’ rooms. He didn’t bother knocking; there was no need. He stepped inside, shutting the door quietly behind him. He didn’t notice Remus fast asleep in the chair by the fire, as he soon flopped down unconscious onto the floor.
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‘Harry? Harry, can you hear me?’

Harry began to open his eyes, but it was too bright so he shut them tightly again. He chanced himself another look, squinting against the brightness of the room he found himself in.
He was lying on the floor by the looks of things; as everything seemed to be bigger than usual. It was then that he noticed Remus’ worried face looming over him.

Remus breathed a sigh of relief. ‘Harry? Are you ok?’ he asked concernedly.
Harry nodded, not knowing how he had got on the floor, but his whole body ached with stiffness.

Remus offered Harry a hand, which he gratefully received. He allowed Remus to guide him over to a chair and he sank back against it’s soft cushions and closed his eyes.

Remus surveyed Harry. ‘He doesn’t look well. I wonder what happened? I bet it was Snape!’ Remus thought to himself.
Harry sniggered at his Godfather’s thoughts; he had obviously forgotten about the link they shared.
‘I’m fine Remus, really. It was because of occlumency I guess, but only because I haven’t been practicing enough…it wouldn’t have been so hard otherwise…’ Harry began.

Remus interrupted him. ‘Harry, I think something happened last night. I mean, whilst you were with Severus, I had to leave the hall because of a headache. Once I got back here it grew worse, and then I think I passed out. The thing is though, Harry. I think it had something to do with this ‘link’ we have between each other,’ Harry looked at Remus confused and so he continued. ‘Because you were having an occlumency lesson at the time, I think….well, I’m not sure, but I think I could feel your pain, mentally.’

Harry stared at Remus.
‘B-But, then that means…’ Harry began.
‘Yes. Yes I know,’ Remus answered sadly.
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Hey guys, this chapter is being re-submitted since the site crashed or something and this chapter got wiped!!! :( Anyway, hope you'll review still?? and I should have the next chapter up shortly... :) ~Sam.

Chapter 12: Connections
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The long awaited ch 12!! :)
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Harry looked at Remus strangely, before realising that he must have read his thoughts. He sighed in annoyance, this ‘link’ was proving to be irritating.

‘How much did you hear?’ Harry asked his Godfather quietly, suddenly finding his shoes incredibly interesting.

‘Enough to know that there’s a prophecy been made about yourself and Voldemort, and that you will be his downfall…why didn’t you tell me sooner?’ Remus asked tentatively, placing a hand on Harry’s shoulder.

Harry remained staring at his shoes. ‘I haven’t told anyone about it. I would of thought that Dumbledore would have told the Order about it anyway?’ Harry questioned.

‘No. He didn’t,’ Remus replied, his every darkened momentary as he answered, and Harry looked up at him feeling slightly scared to see his Godfather looking so terrifying and powerful. But as soon it had come it disappeared and was replaced with the usual shine that they bore; as if tears lay waiting for their command to fall.

‘…But I didn’t hear all of it though. Care to tell me?’ Remus asked.
Harry returned his gaze to the floor and mumbled something unintelligible.
He sighed. ‘You didn’t hear the worst part then, it said: …either must die at the hand of the other, for neither can live while the other survives.’ Harry answered solemnly. He chanced a look at his Godfather who was now squeezing his shoulder tightly. He was looking at Harry sorrowfully and Harry couldn’t stand it, he had to look away again.

‘So basically I’ve got to kill or be killed, and I know I can’t defeat him. He’s much more powerful than I’ll ever be… he’s going to kill me, I know it.’ Harry stated very quietly, but Remus heard him and placed two fingers under Harry’s chin, and tilted his head so that he could look into those emerald eyes of his.
‘You don’t know that Harry, and you shouldn’t talk like that. There is still hope that Voldemort can be defeated, otherwise why would there be a prophecy? There is always hope, Harry. Always,’ Remus reassured Harry, pulling him into an embrace to which Harry gratefully received.
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Dinner that day passed as most others had done. The teachers talking amongst themselves about plans for the start of term, or about the Order or just life in general. Harry ate his dinner silently, every now and then nodding to Remus who countless tried to include him in conversation after conversation. Harry admired Remus’ efforts but he was too unfocused to keep track of a conversation with anyone; his mind lingered on the prophecy, the last few lines replaying over and over in his mind.
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Remus looked over at Harry who once again sat beside him. He sighed as he watched Harry push the food on his plate around with his fork, not once had he seen him take a bite since they entered the hall for dinner. It was worse tough, because he knew what Harry was thinking about he could hear everything that he thought resounding in his mind. He rubbed his temples as the sound of high-pitched laughter broke the boundaries of his mind and in the effort to stop the ear-splitting sound, he abruptly dropped his knife and fork with a clatter against his plate as the other occupants of the room turned to stare at him.
Gradually the sound left his ears and the stone-cold silence of the hall funnelled through.
‘Remus are you ok?’
Remus turned and realised that Harry was looking at him worriedly. He managed a small smile before saying that he was ‘only tired’ Harry didn’t seem convinced and so Remus added telepathically that they’d ‘talk about it later’.
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Once out of ear-shot Harry began his questioning. He was almost running in an attempt to keep up with Remus who seemed desperate to return to his room before saying anything.
‘Once we’re inside Harry, we don’t know who could be listening,’ Remus sent, indicating his office door as they approached. Harry nodded mutely and stepped inside.
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Back in the Great Hall, the other teachers were having a discussion. Presently, Professors’ Dumbledore, Mcgonagall, Snape, Flitwick, Sinistra, Sprout and Vector were all there. Hagrid and Moody were both on separate ‘missions’ and Professor Trelawney very rarely made an appearance whilst others were present. Meaning that the present occupants were all members of the Order, Professor’s Vector and Sinistra been the most recent to join the ranks.

‘I am growing concerned about Harry and Remus,’ Dumbledore began, drawing everyone’s attention instantly. ‘I think the connection that has been forged between them both is starting to take effect, you all saw what happened but moments ago,’ There was a collective nod. ‘I fear that this connection will be the unravelling of them both if something is not done about it soon. Severus, have you found anything new…’
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Meanwhile Remus and Harry were sat in Remus’ room sipping hot chocolate as they spoke. ‘Harry what you have to understand is that I don’t have all the answers…nobody does. At least not at the moment anyway, the Order are still looking into it,’ Remus began.
‘I know. I wish we knew more about this ‘link’ thing we have between us. We can’t shut it off, can we? I mean, are we doomed to forever hear each other’s thoughts for the rest of our lives?’ Harry asked, although he didn’t expect an answer.
Remus sighed. ‘I really don’t know, only time will tell I suppose. The Order is still researching the prophecy but apparently there isn’t much information about this link, also, it’s different because you’re already connected to Voldemort, and I fear that I may also now be connected to him as well,’ Remus answered.
Harry looked at him sharply. ‘What do you mean? Connected to Voldemort? How do you know?’
Remus surveyed Harry before answering carefully, ‘Whilst we were at dinner this evening I heard laughter in my head, like when we communicate with each other… only I know it wasn’t from you, and so it must have been… him.’
Harry gaped at him. He couldn’t believe that Remus was now connected to Voldemort as well!
‘S-So t-that means that… that… will you have dreams like I do?’ Harry asked timidly looking at his shoes. He was afraid of the answer. He didn’t want anyone to see the things that he saw in his dreams, especially Remus.
Remus looked at Harry sadly. ‘I don’t know Harry. I guess we’ll just have to wait and see,’ Remus sighed. ‘You know none of this is your fault though don’t you? It’s not your fault Harry, I mean it!’ Remus told him sternly.
Harry gave a small nod, but he didn’t believe it. Everything was always his fault, or so he believed.

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Hey guys! So sorry, about the lateness of this chapter!! I’ve been bogged down with coursework lately and I haven’t had chance to do much of well… anything! :) But, although I am still as busy as before, I’ll try to keep on top of things… just bare with me for a while… you may find that updates may come in groups in one day and then zilch for a week… etc something like that… but I’ll try my best! :) Anyway, thanks to all my reviewers!! (and silent readers too!!) lol Hope you liked this chapter… after the next one, the pace should pick up a bit, so don’t worry! Don’t forget to REVIEW!! :) ~Sam.


Chapter 13: Birthday Surprises
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Hey guys!! Ch13!! - finally! lol don't forget to review!! :)
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The next few days passed by somewhat uneventfully. Harry had, had another occlumency lesson with Snape, Harry thought that it had gone better than his first attempt since returning to lessons with the potions master, but he still lacked the concentration to enable him to successfully stop Snape’s attack.

The Order had told Remus that they were still yet to find any new information on the mysterious link between himself and Harry; and Remus had refrained from telling them about his suspicions of being connected to Voldemort. He didn’t want to overly worry anyone if he had gotten it wrong, and Harry had gladly agreed to keep it between them until they received more information on the link between them, or until they were sure that it had been Voldemort inside Remus’ head that night – Something that neither of them were hoping for, as it would mean they would have to wait until Harry had his next nightmare, that was almost inevitable.

Hagrid was still yet to return from his ‘mission’ for the Order and Harry found he couldn’t help but worry about what exactly his mission was. As the last had been an attempt to gather the giants for the war. That had failed miserably, and with him, Hagrid had returned with Grawp.
Grawp… Harry had forgotten about Hagrid’s younger brother, and giant. He wondered who was looking after him whilst Hagrid was gone? And whether or not the Order and Dumbledore knew about him?
Harry was pulled from his musings when he heard a soft knock at his door.

‘Harry? Time to get up,’ Remus called.
‘Ok, be out in a minute,’ Harry replied sleepily.
Harry heard Remus’ footsteps as he walked away from the door. He gave a silent yawn before heading to the bathroom for a quick shower.
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Remus watched Harry eating his breakfast and reading his old copy of ‘Which Broomstick’ at the table that had been laid out for the staff and Harry in the Great Hall. He felt excited for Harry, not that Harry knew of course, but the staff had planned a special gathering especially for Harry’s birthday tomorrow, and Remus couldn’t wait to give Harry his present. He had sneakily brought it whilst they were in Hogsmede; he just hoped he would like it as much as he hoped he would.
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The rest of the day was spent with Harry flying around the Quidditch pitch on his Firebolt chasing after the snitch. Remus sat in the stands watching him, with a pile of papers that were to be his lesson plans for the first term. Every so often Harry would fly past him with puppy-dog eyes, pleading for him to come out and join him in his pursuit of the snitch. But the full moon was only two days away and Remus was already beginning to feel the effects of tiredness. So instead he waved to him, before turning back to his paperwork.
It was another two hours before Harry grew bored of flying by himself and having caught the snitch successfully the last five times, he decided he’d head over to see Remus.

Remus smiled as Harry landed next to him gracefully, the tiny snitch fluttering between his grasp. He really was a very talented Quidditch player, Remus wondered if he was better than James was?

‘So you’re ready to head back to the castle then?’ Remus asked whilst finishing off the last line on a piece of parchment.
‘Yeah, I’m pretty hungry too. When’s dinner again?’ Harry asked.
Remus laughed. ‘You really are turning into Ron,’ he joked. ‘Come-on. I think that’s enough paperwork for today,’ he added, gesturing to the mountain of parchment that sat next to him. Harry’s eyes widened. ‘Yep. I’d say so,’ he replied smiling.
They climbed down together before heading back to the castle, hoping to find that dinner would already be started.
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The next morning was like any other. Remus woke Harry the same time he always did, at 8:30, and Harry got changed and headed toward the Great Hall for breakfast with Remus. However, unlike any other day, Harry was greeted by a tumultuous roar of, ‘HAPPY BIRTHDAY HARRY!’
It was so loud and so unexpected that Harry stumbled slightly backwards into a grinning Remus.

Harry couldn’t believe that he had forgotten his birthday again! But he didn’t have long to register this, as he was suddenly bombarded by a mound of bushy, brown hair. ‘Happy birthday Harry!’ Hermione squeaked as she released him.

‘Hermione? When did you get here? I thought you were staying at number 12?’ Harry questioned. Hermione smiled in reply, whilst handing him a rather heavy package that was neatly wrapped. Harry didn’t have to open it to realise it was a book.
‘Thanks Hermione!’ Harry gasped as he read the title: ‘For the Animagus in training: a complete guide.’ ‘Wow! Now this I’ve gotta read!’ Hermione’s smile broadened, before Ron handed Harry his present.

Once everyone had congratulated Harry on his sixteenth and handed him their gifts, they all sat around a much larger table than usual, and ate breakfast. Soon Harry found himself taking part in a conversation with Fred, George, Ron, Hermione and Ginny.

‘…we’re almost ready to re-open you know. I can’t wait to get back to the shop and start selling again…’ George began.
‘…yeah, there’s something about selling pranks to Hogwarts’ students to use on Filch and the Slytherins that just makes it all worth while,’ Fred finished dreamily, making Harry snort into his pumpkin juice.
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The rest of the morning was spent by the younger of the group playing a small game of Quidditch, whilst Remus and the other adults talked about recent events.

Arthur was talking about Fudge, and how the ministry workers were starting to build against him from the inside, which would hopefully lead to a new minister of magic, once Fudge was ousted from his position.

‘I just hope we can find a decent minister as Fudge’s replacement. There’s already talks of Lucius Malfoy wanting to run for minister. However, that should be impossible now, especially when it comes to a public vote – no one will want a Deatheater for a minister of magic. Nor should it be allowed!’ Arthur announced.

‘Here, here’ Moody growled, his magical eye fixed on the Quidditch pitch, his normal eye set on Arthur Weasley.

‘So Remus, how has Harry been since-’ Molly began.
‘He’s better. I don’t think he’s over it in the slightest, but he’s doing well given the circumstances,’ Remus interrupted, not wanting to bring up when Harry had been captured.

‘Ah yes, the curious link between yourself and Potter,’ Snape sneered. ‘Tell me Lupin, how does it feel to have a teenager poking around in your thoughts throughout the day?’

Remus turned his attention to Snape about to answer him, when suddenly Snape winced in pain, clutching his left arm. Remus eyed him curiously before realisation dawned on him.
‘Tell me Severus, how does it feel to have Voldemort poking around in your thoughts throughout the day?’ Remus asked quietly, so that only Snape and himself could hear.
Snape gave him an evil glare, before turning to find Dumbledore behind him.

‘Headmaster…’ Snape began, still clutching his burning arm.
‘Yes Severus. Do be careful, and return as soon as you can. Hopefully you will be given some information that will be valuable to us?’ Dumbledore answered, his eyes twinkling behind his half-moon spectacles.
Snape nodded before sweeping out of the hall, his robes billowing behind him.
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After Snape had left, the conversation seemed to be stuck on one topic: Voldemort, and what he could be up to now?
Remus let his thoughts drift to Harry. He could just see him flying on his broomstick over the Quidditch pitch in the distance, being chased by a gaggle of people all with bright red hair. It seemed the match had ended and they were all chasing Harry and the snitch instead.
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‘Come on Ron! You can do better than that!’ Harry yelled behind him as he chased after the snitch, the entire younger generation of Weasley’s chasing after him in hot pursuit.

Ron grumbled something about his broom not being very fast, especially when compared to a Firebolt. To which the twins laughed as they surpassed him on their new Nimbus 2002’s, which they were able to afford due to their earnings from the shop.
Harry returned his attention to the snitch, he was only a few inches away now… it was almost in his grasp…nearly there…YES! Harry had caught the snitch, and went into a whoop as he did so, soaring across the pitch at remarkable speed, only stopping in front of Ron, before landing with him.

Harry beamed as the twins and Ron patted him on the back, and Ginny gave him a light peck on the cheek, that sent shivers down his spine as his stomach done a back flip. He blushed as she did, and the twins sent cat-calls at the two of them, before Hermione strolled over from where she had been sat reading a book in the stands, to stop the twins from further embarrassing the two.
‘Really! You two should really learn to grow-up!’ Hermione scolded as the twins rolled their eyes together.
‘Yes Mother!’ Fred replied as George and the others broke out into fits of laughter, and Hermione playfully slugged Ron in the arm for laughing.

‘Hey, what did I do?’ Ron laughed.
‘Nothing… just felt like it is all,’ Hermione replied playfully.
Ron eyed her almost suspiciously, before announcing, ‘I think you’ve been spending too much time with Ginny, Hermione. She’s starting to have a bad affect on you.’ Earning himself another thump from Hermione and one from Ginny too.
‘Ouch Ginny! That actually hurt!’ Ron faked.
The two girls laughed though as they caught him rubbing his arm, before heading back toward the castle, Hermione carrying a small stack of books.
Harry shook his head at Ron, and laughed as he said, ‘What?’ before following the girls back to the castle too.
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Hey guys! So that was ch13!! Hope you liked it, things in the plot should start to pick-up a bit now, (hopefully!)
Sorry it took so long! I’ve been snowed under with work and it’s only just starting to shift… oh well :) Anyway, I’ll try to update sooner from now on! Don’t forget to review!! Thanks to everyone who has up to this point! I love receiving your comments about what you think etc, so keep them coming!! ~Sam.
PS) If you wondering, Remus' present to Harry is in the next chappie! :)



Chapter 14: Moonlighting
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The long awaited ch14! (it's quite a long one too! lol) Don't forget to review!

The rest of the night was spent in the Great Hall, where the birthday group had remained throughout the day, apparently discussing Order matters. Harry settled himself in a seat between Ron and Hermione and found that he was also opposite Remus, who smiled warmly at him.

Harry couldn’t remember feeling so happy. The past few weeks had been hard, in fact the last few years had been hard! But since loosing Sirius, Harry had felt like a part of himself had died with him, and it was only now, when he looked around him and saw all of the smiling happy faces that he found that, that hole wasn’t quite so big anymore.

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Later that evening, a rather disgruntled Severus Snape walked along the lawns of Hogwarts’. He had just apparated to Hogsmede village from the lair of the Dark Lord himself. He had been surprised to see the large number of Deatheaters that had been called to the night’s meeting, he assumed Voldemort wasn’t pleased with how they had allowed Potter to once again escape with his life.
Snape had been right to assume so.

It was a truly humbling experience to witness grown men brought to tears whilst writhing in agony on the floor, the effects of the Cruciatus curse upon them.

Why he had ever thought it a good idea to join the dark side and their campaign of ridding the world of all those who, in their Lord’s eyes, were not worthy of life, escaped him completely.

He watched as countless Deatheaters knelt before their master, kissing the hem of his robes whilst pleading their loyalty to him. He would sneer, kick them away and then mercilessly yell ‘CRUCIO’ at their hooded and masked faces. Severus had watched with mounting anxiety after each were called upon to be punished.

And then it had been his turn.


Severus entered the castle, a draft swept through the quiet halls as his long, black robes billowed behind him. He marvelled at how much quieter the castle was when a pack of red heads were not stampeding around the castle. Bloody Weasley’s.

‘Finally’, he thought as he neared the entrance to his quarters. The after effects of the multiple punishments thrown at him were beginning to take their toll on his body. He went to unlock the door with a raspy, ‘Alohomora’ but found the door already unlocked. He withdrew his wand, it held firmly ahead of him, as he slipped soundlessly into the fire-lit room.

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After everyone had gone home, or returned to their own quarters inside the castle, Harry found himself back in Remus’ quarters sat in front of the log fire. Remus sat next to him tentatively sipping at hot cocoa, as he stared silently into the burning embers. He was yet to give Harry his birthday present from him, but thought it would be best to give it to him later.

Harry watched his Godfather. He was beginning to get a headache, he almost felt like he had a cold, but he had been perfectly fine earlier and so didn’t think that could be the reason for his sudden feeling ill.

Suddenly the pain in Harry’s head seared and his scar burned whit-hot against his skin. Remus spilt his cocoa slightly as he turned sharply to look at Harry who was holding his scar.

‘Harry? Harry what is it? Is it Voldemort?’ Remus asked urgently as he attempted to calm Harry down.

‘N-No, it’s not Voldemort. It’s different…different than before… I think… I think…
It’s…it’s the link…’ Harry gasped between the pain that was steadily growing in intensity.
Remus stared at Harry in horror.

‘The link? But then that means it must be me? Doesn’t it? I’m causing Harry pain?… Remus, pull yourself together! Harry needs help!’ Remus scolded himself mentally.
Harry had been too focused on the pain in his scar to hear what Remus had said, he was now almost doubled-over with the pain. His breaths coming in shallow gasps as tears sprouted from his eyes.

Remus physically shook himself from his stupor and bent down to pick Harry up from where he was now kneeling on the floor. He may of looked weak, but he carried Harry with extraordinary strength; although Harry was very light anyway, he rushed from the room and ran as fast as he could to the hospital wing.

‘Madam Pomfrey!’ Remus hollered as he entered the previously silent infirmary. He gently laid Harry down upon the nearest bed, who was muttering incoherently under his breath now, as Madam Pomfrey appeared wrapping a large cloak around herself.

‘Remus? What’s happened now?’ the old witch asked as she moved toward where Harry lay.
Remus was pale and shaking. ‘I-I d-don’t know. H-He was f-fine…’

Madam Pomfrey moved over to her store cupboard and returned with a small glass vial, which she handed to Remus. ‘Here, drink this. It’s a calming potion,’ Poppy said as she returned her attention back to Harry who had grown quiet.
‘Whatever it is, it seems to be fading,’ Poppy admonished.

Remus had just finished the potion. He already felt calmer than he had done before, and seeing that Harry looked slightly better than he had done, he allowed a small flood of relief to fill his body before finally answering Poppy’s original question.

‘Thank you,’ he took a deep breath before continuing, ‘ He was fine. Then I noticed he was clutching his scar, it was hurting him. But then it got worse. He said it wasn’t Voldemort, that it was… the link,’ he answered as he moved round to the left side of Harry’s bed and clutched his hand in his.
Poppy’s eyes were wide. ‘I’ll send for Albus.’
Remus nodded as he perched on the edge of a seat by Harry’s bed, still holding Harry’s hand tightly.

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‘Headmaster,’ Severus sighed as he lowered his wand. ‘Was there something I could do for you?’ he asked trying to remain as calm and unreadable as possible.

Dumbledore surveyed Severus over his half-moon glasses. He noticed he walked with a slight limp, his robes were messy as if he’d been laying on a dusty ground, and he looked even paler than usual.

‘Actually Severus, I was wondering how you were. I noticed you returning and decided to come down and meet you,’ Dumbledore replied simply.

‘Yes you decided to comedown, let yourself into my private quarters, light yourself a fire, and all to probably interrogate me over what I witnessed at my meeting with the Dark Lord’, Snape huffed to himself.

‘Are you alright Severus?’ Dumbledore asked sincerely.
Severus hesitated before answering, ‘I’ll live,’ he answered stiffly. He didn’t care for other people’s pity or sympathy, even if it were from Dumbledore.

Dumbledore sighed before nodding.
However, before he could continue his questioning, a frantic looking Poppy Pomfrey came bustling into the room unannounced, much to Snape’s displeasure.

‘Albus, you are needed in the hospital wing,’ Poppy announced urgently.
Dumbledore stood and moved toward the woman as he asked, ‘Who is it Poppy?’
‘Harry Potter.’
With renewed speed they swiftly left together, leaving an exhausted Severus Snape to flop into the armchair in front of the log fire .

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Soon enough, Dumbledore strode into the infirmary wearing a night cap and long violet robe that was embroidered with moon and stars. He was led to Harry’s bed by a flustered looking Madam Pomfrey.

Dumbledore surveyed Harry, who had been slipping in and out of consciousness the whole time of being in the hospital wing. Remus could hardly pry his eyes away from his charge to answer Dumbledore’s questions.

Dumbledore sighed, he was afraid something like this would happen sooner or later. ‘Remus, how are you feeling?’ Dumbledore asked, although he did not remove his gaze from Harry’s form.

Remus was to say the least, perplexed by the question. ‘What do you mean Albus? It’s Harry who is ill! Not me!’ Remus exclaimed.

Dumbledore turned to look at Remus, his blue eyes had only the faint remnant of a twinkle. ‘I was merely implying that if what Harry said is true; that this has something to do with the link between the two of you, then surely you would be affected also. How are you feeling Remus?’ Dumbledore reiterated.

Remus thought about that for a moment. The full moon was tomorrow so he was already feeling ill, nothing out of the ordinary from his usual pre-transformation nights… Oh no! It suddenly dawned on Remus like a lead weight had just been dropped on him.

‘Albus, the full moon is tomorrow night! That’s why this must be happening! I don’t feel any different than what I normally would, but Harry… he must be feeling some of my… my pain,’ by the time Remus had concluded his diagnosis of the situation he spoke in a bare whisper, but the others heard him clear enough.

Once again Dumbledore sighed. ‘If that be the case Remus, and it seems as though it is. Then I will ask Severus to brew an altered form of the Wolfsbane potion, for Harry,’ Remus looked hard at Dumbledore, shock and anxiety evident on his young yet worn face, ‘Just as a precaution, Remus. I am not saying that Harry will turn; that would be extraordinary! No, it would merely stop any part of the wolf that resides in you, from engaging in Harry’s mind,’ Dumbledore finished calmly, before sweeping out of the infirmary to inform Severus of the potion that they would need.

‘R-Remus?’ Harry’s voice was scratchy and barely audible.
Remus turned to look at Harry. He still had his eyes closed and his face was contorted into a look of sheer pain. Remus dragged his chair closer to Harry’s side, his hand never leaving his.

‘Ssh it’s ok Harry. I’m here, I’m here,’ Remus replied in a soothing voice.
Poppy handed Remus a vial of dreamless sleep potion to give to Harry, and the two of them helped him sit up to take it, before he collapsed back onto his pillows moments later.

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Severus Snape was busy flicking through his textbooks in the gloom of his dungeons, he couldn’t believe that he had been dragged into doing yet another favour for Potter and his Wolf of a Guardian. Worse still, was the fact that the potion that was required would be difficult to brew and could inflict many side effects if not concocted properly, it would require his full attention throughout the night, and what for? Potter! ‘Bloody Potter!’ Snape chimed in his thoughts.

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The following morning Harry awoke to feel extra weight across his stomach, blearily he looked down to see the misshapen form of Remus, sleeping with his head resting across his body. Harry allowed himself a small smile at his Godfather, he also noticed that he was clutching his hand tightly, he allowed these thoughts to drift as he fell back into darkness.

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Many hours later a rather tired and unhappy potion’s master entered the infirmary, a foul smelling, smoking goblet in his hand.
‘Oh good,’ Poppy sighed with relief, ‘Thank you Severus.’

Snape scowled at the woman. He had been working intensely throughout the night on the potion he had just handed the busy-body of a medi-witch, and that was all he got!

He turned to see Potter laid-up in bed, still asleep, a thin film of sweat layered his face, his cheeks flushed. However he turned his scowl into his trademark sneer when he noticed the ‘wolf’ had all but carelessly thrown himself on top of the feverish boy. He exited the infirmary as he allowed the doors to slam with a loud snap, successfully startling Remus from his slumber.

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Later that night, Remus found himself back in his private quarters, a smoking goblet sat on the desk in front of him, ready to be consumed. He sighed. He hated that his being a werewolf had now been confirmed as part of Harry’s pain. He had spoken to Snape and Dumbledore about it earlier, which had been an entirely uncomfortable conversation to the say the least. Snape had been his usual self, never letting up on his tirade of insults about him being a werewolf, and now, his attachment to Harry.
Sighing again, he downed the Wolfsbane potion in one before moving toward the door and setting many shields in place, successfully shutting out anyone and everyone, and stopping his wolf form from escaping… just in-case.

Outside, a darkened cloud moved across the full moon. It’s light cast down upon the grounds of Hogwarts, illuminating the lake and Hagrid’s deserted hut. As it did so, a wolf’s howl could be heard, reverberating from the second floor.

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Harry’s eyes sprang open so fast he caused the people in the room to jump two inches into the air.
‘Ah, Potter. Here, drink this,’ commanded Snape, as he handed Harry the goblet of potion he had made earlier.

Harry looked at the smoking goblet; raising it to his nose, he almost retched from the smell of it. ‘Um… What is it, sir?’ Harry asked, eyeing the goblet disdainfully.

Snape rolled his eyes at the insufferable brat. Didn’t he know he had better things to be doing rather than coddling him?

‘Drink it Potter! It’s for your own good. Now, drink!’ Snape ordered.
Harry didn’t argue, he quickly gulped it down, purposefully holding his breath and screwing up his eyes as he did so. However, he was pleasantly surprised when it actually tasted rather nice, like apple almost. He handed Snape back the empty goblet, who quickly swiped it from his hand, as if he thought he would be clumsy enough to drop it.

‘Good. Now I can get back to my work,’ Snape muttered to himself as he left the ward.
It was then that Dumbledore came into focus. His blue eyes twinkling slightly behind his half-moon glasses, as Harry noticed just how old Dumbledore looked. Much older than when he had left at the end of last year, when…
He didn’t want to think about that.
Thankfully, Dumbledore chose this moment to speak. ‘I’m glad to see you are feeling slightly better Harry. We will have a proper discussion about what happened to you yesterday, once the full moon has passed. For now though, I feel it best if you remain in here for the night and tomorrow as well,’ Harry was about to protest that he was feeling fine when Dumbledore put up a hand to placate him. ‘Yes, I know you may feel fine at the moment Harry, but that potion does have a few side-effects and I would feel happier, if you remained in the hospital wing until Remus returns tomorrow, understand?’
‘Yes sir,’ Harry answered somewhat disappointed that he would be spending a total of nearly three days in the hospital wing for one short burst of pain in his scar. He found it slightly odd, but decided not to, mention anything in front of the headmaster for the time being.

‘Good. Goodnight Harry,’ Dumbledore replied before leaving the hospital wing, and Harry to a fussing Madam Pomfrey.

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Ok guys, that was the 14th chapter! Yay! I can’t believe how long it’s taken me to get this one up! So sorry about that, I’ll try not to do that again… :) Hope you liked it anyway!
Thanks to all my wonderful reviewers! I love hearing your thoughts and opinions, so keep them coming!

ALSO, is there anything you might want to see happen in the story? Not major plot lines, as they are already sorted, but little stuff like, Quidditch, Weasley visits, More romance? More action? More Remus/Harry stuff? Um… More Snape (God he’s fun to write! Lol) um… I don’t know, but if you do, don’t hesitate to ask in a review!!
Thanks! ~Sam :)

PS) I know I said Remus’ present to Harry would be in this chapter, but I didn’t get to fit it in, so it will be in the next :p




Chapter 15: Welcome Home
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Chapter 15! (finally) Okay, mild swearing and spoilers… Oh, and long chapter ahead, (well, long for me anyway! Lol) Enjoy! ~Sam.
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As the night sky began to lighten and the moon faded from view; a series of howls and whimpers could be heard coming from the second floor corridor. Or more precisely, Remus Lupin’s office.
Soon the howls turned to screams as the werewolf once again transformed back to a man.
And then it was over.
He lay panting on his office floor, trying to regain his breath; as his hands examined his face softly, inspecting the damage from the night’s activities.
He let out a sigh, before removing the protective shields from the room, allowing Poppy to enter when she came to check on him.

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Harry lay in bed. His body tense from an unknown source of pain, as a thin film of sweat layered his brow.
Dumbledore had been right in saying that the potion had it’s side-effects. He had hardly gotten any sleep during the night, due to the dull ache that consumed his small frame. He felt like he had been hit by the Knight bus and then ran over again just for the fun of it. To say the least, he didn’t feel up to the talk that Dumbledore had promised him that morning.

He remained awake for the next few hours, undisturbed. He assumed it must still be early as Dumbledore hadn’t stopped by yet, and wondered whether or not Remus had transformed yet.

As if in answer to his thoughts, his musings were disturbed by Madam Pomfrey, walking with a rather tired looking Remus trailing behind her. Harry watched silently as Remus made his way to the bed next to his, laid down and closed his eyes.
He was just about to ask how he was feeling when suddenly Remus answered his unasked question.

‘I’ve been better, thanks,’ he answered without opening his eyes, leaving Harry staring at him open mouthed.
Remus chuckled slightly before opening his eyes to look at Harry’s shocked face. ‘Don’t tell me you forgot about the link, Harry?’ he asked amusedly.
Harry’s cheeks tinged pink in recognition. Remus just laughed again, before patting a space on the bed, making room for Harry to sit there.

‘How are you? When I left you last night, you didn’t look too good. I wanted to stay of course, but-’ Remus began.
‘Better,’ Harry answered shortly, to which Remus raised an eyebrow. ‘Well, there’s still a bit of pain. But nothing to worry about, it’ll soon fade,’ Harry added hastily, not wanting to worry Remus.
Remus gave Harry a small smile. He didn’t believe in the slightest that it was just a bit of pain as Harry had said, but decided not to press the matter, unless it became apparent that he need to.

‘Oh, I nearly forgot,’ Remus exclaimed suddenly pulling Harry from his half-doze, ‘Accio present!’ Suddenly there was a whooshing sound and before Harry knew it, a neatly wrapped box-shaped present appeared and landed softly in Remus’ outstretched hand.
‘Sorry. I forgot to give you this on your birthday yesterday, what with all the commotion…’ Remus whispered as he held the gift out for Harry to take.
Harry took the gift gratefully and silently unwrapped the paper that had moving snitches on it, attempting not to rip it, as though it were expensive or precious to him.

Opening the box, Harry peered inside to see a large glass orb of some kind. He reached in, removing the orb and held it up to his eye to get a better look. What he saw though, made him gasp in surprise.
Swirling colours intermingled with each other, reflecting a rainbow on his face and hands where the light caught it. It seemed as though the colours were waiting for him to do something. He turned to Remus to ask him.

‘It’s called a light sphere, Harry. Wizards use them to determine one’s aura. If you hold it up and look through it at someone, you will be able to see the colours of their aura,’ Remus explained, ‘Give it a try.’

Harry held the colourful sphere out in front of him and looked through it at Remus. The colours immediately shifted and then began to mix together forming a mix of orange and green. Harry lowered the orb to look at Remus and smiled.

‘Wow. Thank you, Remus. I love it!’ Harry exclaimed as he hugged Remus tightly, to which Remus returned affectionately.

Harry looked back at the sphere fondly. He knew it would definitely come in handy during the school year. He couldn’t wait to see what colour Snape’s aura was, he guessed it would be black.
Remus smiled at his Godson before falling into a blissful slumber.

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The rest of the day passed somewhat uneventfully. Dumbledore had visited Harry as he said he would, basically to ask him how he was feeling. Which Harry told him truthfully, wasn’t too bad at that moment, and that most of the pain had receded; which seemed to relieve Dumbledore. He then went on to explain everything that had happened to Harry, and to inform him that until more information could be found on the link, he would have to continue taking the potion which Snape had now brewed in large quantities.

Harry never did get around to using the orb against Snape, but vowed to soon.

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As the summer began to draw to a close, the occupants of the castle found themselves preparing for the beginning of the new school term, on September 1st.

‘I can’t believe it’s September already!’ Harry exclaimed, whilst packing up his things from Remus’ living quarters, ready to be moved to Gryffindor tower.

Remus nodded. ‘I know. I just hope the other students are as happy to have me back as you are, what with me being a- with my condition.’ Remus said quietly.

Harry frowned. He hadn’t expected Remus to act like this, he normally never let what people said get to him. It was unusual for him to openly express his worries as well, and that’s what made Harry worry.
Harry stopped packing up his things and moved toward Remus, who had been stood by the window, looking out over the lake.

‘You don’t need to worry you know. I’m certain all of Gryffindor will be more than pleased to have their favourite defence professor back, as will the Ravenclaws and Hufflepuffs. As for the Slytherins, their opinion doesn’t exactly mean much anyway does it? I mean, most of them are destined to be Deatheaters, and do you really care what Deatheaters, mini ones at that, think of you?’ Harry asked, smiling slightly.

Remus smiled in reply. ‘You’re right. I’m sorry, I don’t know why I said that, just nerves I guess.’
Harry shook his head. ‘You don’t need to be sorry Remus. You taught me that,’ Harry replied as Remus embraced him in a fatherly hug.
After a few minutes they pulled away and Harry resumed packing, their heavy hearts lifted slightly.

Remus returned his attention to the window, when he noticed something that made him smile, ‘Harry, guess who’s back?’
Harry raced over to the window and peered out, looking over the grounds. He stopped searching when he noticed an overly large man, dressed in a moleskin coat was striding over to his cabin.
‘Hagrid!’ Harry exclaimed happily.

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Severus Snape prowled his study. He had seen who was in his potion’s classes this year and his lip had curled at the sight of Potter’s name. Another tortuous year with the insolent, pig-headed, brat; who reminded him so much of his father, and so little of Lily, that it was almost as if he were looking at a replica of James Potter. Almost.

Potter’s eyes were undoubtedly Lily’s. He could not bare to look at them, that dazzling, emerald green that threatened to overpower his senses, as he was reminded of Lily Potter… no Evans. She should never of been married to Potter, she deserved better then that fool.
Always the clown with Black, the pair were infamous for their pranks along with Lupin and snivelling Pettigrew. He was of course their main target, how they would taunt him, calling him a ‘greasy git’ and ‘Snivellus’. He shuddered at the memories.
Potter was going to pay for his father’s mistakes, there was no doubt about that!

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Remus had portkeyed with Harry to platform 9¾, saying that it would be best for him to arrive at Hogwarts along with the rest of the students, as well as give him time to catch up with Ron and Hermione. Reluctantly, Harry had agreed. He didn’t want to leave Remus alone at the castle by himself, but reasoned with himself that their would be other teachers their too.
Soon enough, the platform was flooded with Hogwarts’ students and their families saying last goodbyes before the final whistle blew. Harry had found himself a compartment at the back of the train, where he was soon joined by Ron, Hermione, Ginny, Neville and Luna.

Neville seemed different to Harry somehow. Perhaps it was the extra two inches in height he had grown? or that he had lost the ‘puppy-fat’ from his cheeks? Harry couldn’t tell, but he seemed more confident in himself, and Harry was happy for him.

The train ride to Hogsmeade station was somewhat uneventful. Ron and Harry played exploding snap, Hermione read the school books that she hadn’t managed to finish over the summer, Ginny and Neville talked about the coming school year and what they had done over summer, whilst Luna read a copy of The Quibbler.

Malfoy, was the only disturbance. He had waltzed into the train compartment, flanked by his two cronies, Crabbe and Goyle.
‘Well, well, well. And what do we have here?’ Malfoy drawled, ‘A Mudblood, Potty, two Weasels, Loony, and…’

However, Draco was cut off from what he was about to say as Neville had stepped forward, wand raised, with a menacing look upon his face. Malfoy faltered for a second, silenced by the look Neville was giving him, before he unwisely continued his assault. ‘…and lard ass Longbottom.’

Before Harry could even reach for his wand, he watched in amazement as Malfoy was thrown from the compartment and landed in a heap on the floor outside. However, it wasn’t Neville who had cursed him, as Mad-Eye Moody stepped into view.

‘Nasty piece of filth. You two, take Malfoy back to your carriage and stay there, understand?’ Moody growled, his normal eye fixed on the two goons, Crabbe and Goyle, whilst his magical one remained on Malfoy, who was slowly getting to his feet. They nodded dumbly whilst scrambling out of Moody’s view back to their compartment.

Eventually, Moody turned back to Neville and the others. His normal eye fixed at the carriage at large with his magical eye on Neville. ‘You lot alright?’ he asked gruffly. Harry nodded. ‘It was just Malfoy being himself.’
Moody nodded, took one last look at the group and swept out of the carriage again.
Neville excused himself to go to the bathroom, and didn’t return before the end of the train journey. Leaving Harry to wonder over his actions; it was extremely unlike Neville to take up the offensive, especially against someone such as Malfoy; but as Hogwarts loomed into view, Harry was pulled from his thoughts and exited the carriage with the others in tow.

‘Firs’ years! Firs’ years this way!’ Hagrid’s voice boomed over the chatter of the students, as they made their way to the Thestral-drawn carriages. Harry smiled and waved at Hagrid as he passed, who promised that they would talk later, before resuming his call for the first years.

Harry approached the Thestral which would be pulling the carriage they were going to use to get up to Hogwarts. He reached out and stroked its’ mane and was surprised when the creature leaned into the touch.

‘They’re fascinating aren’t they?’

Harry turned around and was surprised to see a girl who he didn’t recognise stood behind him. She had long brown hair that was pulled back into a pony tail, hazel eyes with flecks of green at the centre, and full lips. She was about sixteen, Harry surmised, which would make her a sixth year like him, yet he didn’t recognise her and so assumed she must be new.
‘Um… Yeah, they are. Sorry, don’t mean to sound rude or anything, but who are you? I haven’t seen you around before?’ Harry asked awkwardly.
The girl laughed slightly. It was almost silent, but her shoulders shook when she did, making it unmistakeable.
‘I’m sorry. I’m Gabrielle. But call me Gabey,’ Gabey answered as she shook Harry’s hand.
‘Nice to meet you Gabey. I’m Ha-’ Harry began.
‘You’re Harry Potter, I know,’ She finished for him, smiling slightly.

They climbed into the carriage together, where Harry introduced Gabey to the others before continuing to ask questions. He thought she was attractive and there was just something about her that made him want to find out more about the mysterious girl.

‘So which school did you used to go to?’ Ron asked.
The girl hesitated slightly before answering calmly, ‘Durmstrang.’

There was a few moments of awkward silence where nobody said anything and attempted to avoid each other’s gazes. Eventually, Hermione broke the silence. ‘Viktor used to go to Durmstrang. Viktor Krum, the Bulgarian Quidditch Seeker, did you know him?’ Hermione asked eagerly. A little too eagerly for Ron’s liking though.

The girl seemed to breathe a sigh of relief before plunging into a detailed conversation about how she knew Viktor more of an acquaintance than as a friend, and how she used to play beater on the Quidditch team.

‘That’s great. We need two new beaters for the team this year, that’s if you’re sorted into Gryffindor though,’ Ron finished nervously, as though talking to a person from another house were like mingling with a disease.
Gabey smiled but didn’t respond, turning her attention back to the nearing castle gates.

Soon enough, the carriage ground to a halt and the students swamped through the castle doors into the entrance hall and through to the Great Hall.

Harry looked up at the enchanted ceiling. It reflected the night sky- black with a crescent moon and a sprinkling of stars that twinkled down at the many students below.
Looking up at the head table, Harry noticed that Remus and Moody were sat there, which Harry thought was odd since it wasn’t time for the full moon yet, but brushed that thought aside as he was almost pushed into his seat by Ron who had eagerly picked up his knife and fork already, waiting for the food to appear. Harry rolled his eyes at his friend. Didn’t he realise that there was still the sorting to do?

Just then, Professor Mcgonagal entered carrying the three legged stool and the sorting hat. A long stream of timid looking first year students followed behind her, and at the back stood Gabey, looking paler than she had done before.

‘Now, when I call out your name, you will place the sorting hat on your head, and you will be sorted into your houses,’ Mcgonagal announced, ‘Adam Appleby.’

Harry watched as a timid looking boy who looked much too young to be at Hogwarts at all, stepped forward. He had mousy, brown hair and a small button nose. He took hold of the hat as he sat on the stool, and allowed it to slip over his eyes. ‘Hufflepuff!’ the hat bellowed, before a round of applause and cheers from the Hufflepuff table sounded.

Harry soon lost interest in the sorting and instead found himself in a whispered conversation with Ron about Quidditch.

‘Slytherin!’ A more polite applause sounded as a large boulder of a boy made his way to the Slytherin table.
Mcgonagal announced that this year there was to be a new student who would be in sixth year, before calling, ‘Gabrielle Newton!’
Harry returned his attention to the sorting. Suddenly interested in which house Gabey would be placed in. He watched as she calmly made her way to the stool and placed the hat upon her head, which unlike the others, didn’t fall over her eyes, and she instead took to looking at the ceiling as a shooting star shot across it. After what seemed like an eternity, the hat finally shouted, ‘Gryffindor!’
Gabey promptly made her way over to the Gryffindor table and sat down next to Hermione who had made room next to her.

After the final person had been sorted, Dumbledore rose from his seat to make the start of term announcements.

‘Oh come on! I’m starving here!’ Ron moaned as Dumbledore explained that there were now 2282 items on Mr Filch’s list of prohibited items, of which consisted everything that the Weasley twins had created.

Finally, Dumbledore announced that Remus and Moody would be taking up the position of Defence Against the Dark Art’s teacher together, because of Professor Lupin’s condition. Which was swiftly followed by whispers from all houses, especially those at the Slytherin table. Harry turned his attention back to Dumbledore waiting for him to continue, desperately trying to block out the jeers coming from the Slytherin table.

‘Let the feast begin!’ Dumbledore announced.
‘Finally!’ Ron exclaimed as he loaded his plate with chicken, mash potato, peas and broccoli.
‘’Ey, ‘Arry di’ oo no’iss ‘Agrid waz bak?’ Ron asked, his mouth so full of food that Hermione and Gabey looked away in disgust.
‘What?’ Harry asked trying to avoid looking at Ron’s mouth.
Ron swallowed. ‘I said, did you notice that Hagrid was back?’
Harry nodded. ‘Yeah. I saw him when I came off the train. I still don’t know where he was over the summer, but he said that we would talk later, so I’ll ask him tomorrow or something.’
Ron nodded before retuning to his mountain of food.

After the feast, Dumbledore rose from his throne like chair again to address the students. ‘Before you make your way back to your dormitories, I am pleased to announce that this year Hogwarts’ will be holding a masquerade ball at Christmas. More details to be announced on this event at the end of term. That is all. Goodnight to you all!’
Excited chatter filled the hall at the announcement of the masquerade. Whilst Ron and Hermione explained to Harry that they needed to show the Gryffindors to the tower along with the other prefects, and would meet him in the common room afterwards.

‘Gryffindors! This way, Gryffindors! Follow me!’ Ron called over the hum of chatter as the students began to exit the Great Hall.

Harry made his way through the sea of students to the front of the hall where he approached Remus, who was still talking to Moody about something. Something which Harry could only assume was about the Order, as their conversation came to an abrupt halt when they spotted Harry waiting to talk with Remus.

‘Speak to you later Remus,’ Moody growled, ‘Potter.’ Moody nodded his head slightly at Harry before exiting the hall.

Remus turned back to Harry. ‘So, what’s it like to be back, with everyone else here too? I’m sure it must feel quite strange, especially since it was so quiet over the summer,’ Remus questioned.
Harry nodded yes. ‘It does feel strange, I don’t know how I’m going to remember to call you Professor Lupin again,’ Harry wondered.
Remus chuckled slightly. ‘Yes, I know. And I have to get used to calling you Mr Potter in class. Yes, it will be strange…’
Remus noticed that Harry was looking at his shoes, which Remus had learnt, meant that he either felt he was in trouble for something or he wanted to ask something and didn’t know how to.
‘What’s on your mind Harry?’ Remus asked.
‘Can’t you tell?’ Harry asked telepathically, causing Remus to frown slightly.
‘Well yes, I do know because of the link between us, but I was rather hoping that you would tell me yourself?’ Remus answered.
Harry sighed. ‘Sorry, I’m being silly. Just forget it,’ he said, as he tried to turn away from Remus. Remus stopped him by placing a hand on his shoulder.

‘It’s not a silly thing to think Harry. Of course you would think that because we have to resume the formality between us, that we couldn’t be as close as we have been over the summer… but that’s not the case. I will always be your Godfather, Harry. No matter what, understand?’ Remus asked seriously.

Harry nodded as Remus ruffled his hair. ‘Go on, you better get to bed before Filch catches you,’ Remus warned.
‘Okay. See you tomorrow. Goodnight Remus,’ Harry called back as he made his way to the now empty hall’s doors.
‘Goodnight Harry,’ Remus called after him, before making his own way back to his living quarters.

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OK guys, that was the 15th chapter! Pretty long too! Hope you liked it. I finally got them back at school! Yay! Lol. Took me long enough. Anyway, what did you think of the OC Gabey? She’s a bit mysterious at the moment, but all will be revealed… gradually, :p

Oh, and did you like the present Remus gave Harry? The idea came to me yesterday, when I brought this really cool looking paperweight!

Don’t forget to review!! Thanks to everyone who has so far! and I noticed I have quite a few new reviewers, which is fantastic! Hope you all continue to read and review!!

Plus, what I said in the last chapter still stands… If you have any thoughts or suggestions about what you’d like to see /more of in the story, then don’t hesitate to leave comments in a review! :) Thanks!

Oh, and in case I don’t get chance to before: Merry Christmas Everyone!! :)

PS) I recommend everyone go see ‘The Phantom of the Opera’ at the cinema- I went to see it the other day, and it was fantastic! So if you’ve been debating whether to go or not, GO! Lol Plus, the Phantom is quite good looking :p
~Sam.



Chapter 16: Class Time
  [Printer Friendly Version of This Chapter]

For those of you who like Duels, you should enjoy this chapter... :D ~Sam.
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The giant squid bobbed along the surface of the vast lake, as the first rays of autumn sunshine lit the grounds. It raised it’s long, tentacle arms almost as if it were waving up at the sun, before abruptly diving back under the surface, causing the soft ripples of water to transform into harsh currents, over-flowing the lake’s boundaries.

High above the grounds in Gryffindor tower, four of the five occupants in the sixth year boy’s dormitory, were snoring; dreaming of the weeks to come and all the fantastical things that a 16 year old wizard could dream of.
However, the fifth occupant, was not asleep. He found it hard to these past few months. Over and over he would see things that normal 16 year olds shouldn’t; and so now he didn’t sleep, he avoided it at all costs. He would just wait until it was time to get up and then make his way down to the Great Hall for breakfast with his friends; they would be none the wiser. His name was Ron Weasley.

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‘Harry, wake up! It’s time for breakfast!’ Ron yelled into a previously sleeping Harry’s ear.
‘Okay, okay, I’m up! Jeez Ron, do you have to shout?’ Harry asked sleepily, it was only 7:30, he could afford to sleep in until 8 at the least, but he knew how much Ron loved his food.
Ron just shrugged before grabbing his bag and heading out the door down to the common room.
Harry stretched and yawned before proceeding to get ready for his first day of classes.

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Upon entering the common room, Harry noticed that everyone seemed to be up already, which he found slightly odd but decided not to remark on it.
‘Morning Harry,’ Hermione greeted from the settee in front of the fire.
‘Morning,’ he replied, whilst heading towards her and Ron who was sat next to her.
‘I can’t wait to see what classes we have today! It’s going to be so exciting!’ Hermione squeaked enthusiastically, causing Ron and Harry to roll their eyes in synch.
‘Come on, I’m starving!’ Ron complained before heading toward the portrait hole, with Harry and Hermione following closely behind.

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Once inside the Great Hall, Harry sat between Ron and Hermione as they each began to load their plates. Harry looked up at the staff table and noticed that Remus, as well as most of the other teachers, was already seated. Remus must have felt Harry’s gaze as he waved down at him, to which Harry returned smiling.

Half way through breakfast, Professor Mcgonagall handed the trio there timetables, causing Ron to groan in annoyance and Harry to almost choke on his pumpkin juice.
‘What? What is it?’ Hermione asked, reaching for both of their timetables and examining them.

Ron’s read:
Monday:
9am: Diviniation
11am: Diviniation
1pm: Lunch
2pm: Care of Magical Creatures
4pm: Defence Against the Dark Arts

Harry’s read:
Monday:
9am: Potions
11am: Potions
1pm: Lunch
2pm: Care of Magical Creatures
4pm: Defence Against the Dark Arts

Hermione’s read:
Monday:
9am: Potions
11am: Potions
1pm: Lunch
2pm: Care of Magical Creatures
4pm: Defence Against the Dark Arts

‘Well, at least we have Hagrid and Remus later. Anyway, come on we have to get our books yet, and I don’t want to be late to Snape’s class,’ Hermione said before taking off, Harry and Ron trailing behind her.

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Harry and Hermione had seated themselves at the back of Snape’s classroom. Harry wasn’t surprised to see that they seemed to be the only Gryffindors in the class. There were no Hufflepuffs, five Ravenclaws, and the rest were Slytherins.
Hermione explained that because years 6 and 7 were N.E.W.T level classes only, classes were mixed with all the houses, not just two, as in previous years. Apparently, it was also supposed to promote inter-house unity, although Harry thought that it was a little late where the Slytherins were concerned.

Suddenly, the door clanged open as Snape entered the dungeon classroom. A sense of foreboding began to creep up on Harry as he waited silently for the potion’s master to begin, he was almost certain that Snape was going to attempt to humiliate him in front of the class because he had somehow gained an O in his O.W.L examination, something that still remained a mystery to him.

‘This is a NEWT level class, as such, I demand that each and every one of you…’ Snape began, but was abruptly cut off as the door let out a long whining creek as a late arrival slowly pushed it open. It was Gabey.

‘Um, is this sixth year Potion’s class?’ Gabey asked bravely. Snape swooped down upon her until his face was but inches from hers before he spoke in a deadly quiet voice, ‘Yes, this is sixth year potions class, and you are late! Miss?’ Snape asked.

Gabey hadn’t even flinched. Harry was pretty sure if he had been in Gabey’s shoes, on his first day of school, he would have run back out of the classroom!
‘Oh, sorry! I’m Gabey, Gabey Newton,’ she replied.
Snape stepped back slightly, regaining his full height. He narrowed his eyes at her, before closing the door and returning to his desk.
‘Hurry up and find a seat, Miss Newton,’ Snape snarled without so much as looking at Gabey.
Quickly, Gabey approached the back of the class, before asking Harry if she could take the seat on his left that was unoccupied. Harry nodded, before returning his attention back to Snape.

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Meanwhile, Ron found himself in the smoky confines of the Diviniation classroom, that had been moved to the first floor for Firenze who shared the Divination position with Trelawney, but each had separate classrooms, side-by-side. At the moment he was sat in a chintz armchair around a small round table with Lavender and Pavarti. It seemed that most of the people in the room were Hufflepuffs with only two Ravenclaws and no Slytherins. Trelawney was taking the first half of the lesson until ten, when they would swap to the other classroom for their lesson with Firenze.
‘Broaden your minds… open your inner-eye…let it lead you to the astral plane…’ shrilled Trelawney for what must have been the third time in as many minutes. To say that Ron was bored would have been an understatement, he was having a hard time trying to keep his eyes open, the last thing he wanted was to fall asleep, he was afraid he might wake up screaming…again. ‘Merlin, I’m turning into Harry!’ Ron thought unhappily.

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Back in Potions class, Harry and Gabey were having a whispered conversation, whilst Hermione kept shooting annoyed glances at the two as if they were distracting her from brewing her engorgement potion.

Snape had explained after a long winded talk about how this year would be excruciatingly painful for those who failed to be competent in brewing the potions assigned to them, how to brew the engorgement potion. With effects much like the engorgement charm, the potion allows a wizard to administer the engorgement potion to certain areas of the body, and unlike the charm, the size of the afflicted area can be controlled, through careful measuring.

It was a lot harder than they had first anticipated.

‘I’ve never seen Snape allow someone into his class late before, without docking house points or a detention, Gabey. Maybe he’s ill or something?’ Harry asked himself more than Gabey.

Gabey shrugged. ‘Who knows. Would you care if he was?’ Both Harry and Hermione swung round to look at her confused, ‘I mean, you’ve just told me about all the horrible things he says to you, and how he favours Slytherins over any of the other houses…’ Gabey trailed off, waiting for the others to respond.
Harry sighed. ‘Yeah, I know. But still, he is acting odd…’

‘Mr Potter, this is not a chance for you to catch up on conversation with Miss Newton,’ Harry watched how Snape’s lip curled as he said Gabey’s surname, and he didn’t miss when Gabey narrowed her eyes dangerously at Snape, ‘Get back to work! And twenty points from Gryffindor and detention tonight Mr Potter, be here at eight,’
Harry sighed. ‘Nope, he’s fine.’
Hermione rolled her eyes.

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It was lunchtime and Harry, Hermione and Gabey had met up with Ron after their double periods and were now discussing potions class.
‘Honestly, detention on the first day of class, Harry!’ Hermione scolded.
‘Don’t remind me. Remus is going to have a fit!’ Harry replied solemnly.
‘And what would that be about?’ came a familiar voice from behind the teens.

Harry turned to see Remus stood behind him, with a questioning look on his face.
‘Um… I kind of… er, got a detention from Snape this morning, for eight o’clock tonight,’ Harry replied sheepishly.
‘Er, we’ll see you inside Harry,’ Hermione said.
‘Yeah, bye mate,’ Ron said quickly before hurrying after Hermione into the Great Hall for lunch.
Harry watched as his two friends entered the hall, before turning back to face Remus.

‘Harry, I-‘ Remus began, and Harry mentally prepared himself for an ‘ear bending’.
However, neither had noticed that Gabey had remained until she quickly jumped to Harry’s defence.

‘Professor, it wasn’t Harry’s fault. It was mine,’ Harry looked at Gabey dumbstruck whilst Remus’ expression was unreadable as he gazed at the new girl, ‘I had asked Harry a question about the potion we were brewing, and when Professor Snape caught Harry talking, he thought that Harry was trying to distract me from my work instead,’ Gabey finished by giving Remus the most innocent look Harry had ever seen, like butter wouldn’t melt in her mouth.
It had worked.

‘I see, well that seems like something Professor Snape would do,’ he muttered to himself, ‘I’m sorry. I didn’t catch your name?’
‘Gabey, Gabey Newton,’ she replied as she held out her hand for Remus to shake. Remus took her hand and smiled at the polite girl.

'Is she a friend of yours Harry?' Remus sent Harry through their telepathic link.
'Yes. I mean, we only met her last night, but she seems really nice,’ Harry replied.

‘And I’m Professor Lupin. However, any friend of Harry’s may call me Remus,’ Remus replied kindly.
‘Okay Professor Lupin,’ Gabey replied, causing Remus to smile at her formality.
‘Well, you best get off to lunch. I’ll see you in Defence later, Harry. Gabey,’ Remus announced with a nod of his head at the two, before entering the hall himself.

Harry turned to Gabey. ‘You didn’t have to do that you know. But thanks anyway,’ Harry smiled.
‘You’re welcome. Are you and Professor Lupin related I some way?’ Gabey asked.
‘Oh! Didn’t I tell you? Remus is my Godfather, as of this summer,’ Harry explained as they entered the hall. He then went on to explain about his past, how his parents had been killed by Voldemort and Sirius last summer, although he remembered to extract bits of information that he was uncertain he should tell Gabey as of yet, even though he did surprise himself with the amount he told her, it was as if there was something about those hazel, green flecked eyes that enticed him to want to divulge everything to her. Before he knew it, it was time for Hagrid’s class, and his thoughts turned to those of wondering what Hagrid had been doing over the summer.

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As it turned out, Gabey didn’t have Care of Magical Creatures with the trio, instead she had Arithmancy. It was only when Harry, Ron and Hermione reached Hagrid’s hut, that they realised there were no Slytherins present and most of the class was made up of Gryffindors.

Righ’ you lot. Ga’her roun’, I go’ a real good class line’ up for you today,’ Hagrid announced, causing everyone to take a step back rather than a step forward, as Hagrid revealed a large cage, it’s contents hidden behind a blanket that lay over the cage.
The class watched with baited breath as Hagrid began to pull the cloth off of the cage, eventually revealing… nothing.
‘Er, Hagrid… where is it?’ Ron asked, peering into the empty cage.
Hagrid gave a hearty laugh before asking the class to take a couple of steps back away from the cage, as it was obviously feeling threatened with so many eyes on it. To which the class hurriedly took steps back, not wanting to be near any animal of Hagrid’s that felt threatened. Harry listened curiously as Hagrid seemed to whisper reassuringly to the invisible creature, and then suddenly it appeared.

Harry thought it looked something like a graceful ape in appearance. It’s whole body was covered with long, fine, silky, silvery hair, and it’s large, black, doleful eyes were partially hidden underneath it.

‘Class, this is a Demiguise. Now, does anyone know wha’ tha’ is?’ Hagrid asked, and to no one’s surprise Hermione’s hand shot up into the air waving frantically at Hagrid. Ron rolled his eyes as Harry suppressed a snort.
Hagrid beamed. ‘Hermione?’

‘The Demiguise is found in the Far East, though only with great difficulty, as they are able to make themselves invisible when threatened, and can be seen only by wizards skilled in its capture. It is a peaceful herbivorous beast and its pelts are highly valued as the hair may be spun into Invisibility Cloaks,’ Hermione answered.

‘Excellent! 10 points to Gryffindor!’ Hagrid awarded, ‘Now, who’d like to pet him?’
The class again took another step back.

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‘Hagrid, you said you’d speak to me about where you were over the summer,’ Harry began, consciously knowing that he didn’t have much time before DADA started.
Hagrid seemed to think about what Harry said for a moment before realisation dawned on him.

‘Oh, yeah, yeah I did, didn’t I,’ Hagrid began, ‘Well, I was on a mission for the Order. I can’t say much about it now, I’ve gotta ‘nother lesson in a minute ‘Arry,’ Hagrid finished, turning away from Harry to place the Demiguise inside his hut.

Harry frowned. It was obvious Hagrid wasn’t going to tell him anything more without being prodded into it, but he didn’t have time, he was going to be late to Remus’ lesson if he didn’t hurry up, and so decided to question Hagrid again when he had more time. With that thought in mind, he took off at a run back toward the castle.

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‘Welcome to Defence Against the Dark Arts. I am your Professor, Professor Lupin, and now if you’d kindly put your books away, pull out your wands and follow me, we can begin the lesson,’ Remus announced as he began to vacate the room.
Harry and the others smiled at each other before quickly finding their wands and following Remus out the door and down the corridor, the rest of the class following closely behind.

Harry lead the group of friends and rest of the class as he followed Remus into the Great Hall. Harry wondered what it was they’d be doing during the two hour lesson. It was obvious it was to be a practical lesson, but he didn’t understand why they had gone to the Great Hall?

Once everyone was inside, Remus began to speak again. Harry noticed that the house tables had been removed somehow and the hall stood bare, but for Remus, himself and the rest of the class.

‘Today, will be a practical lesson. Since your last Professor had, shall we say, rather odd teaching methods,’ Harry snorted, odd was not the word, as he glanced at the words on the back of his right hand that read, ‘I must not tell lies’, before turning his attention back to Remus, ‘I need to see what stage all of you are at. Now, if you’d kindly find a partner to duel with, we can begin,’ Remus announced.

Harry looked around at everyone else in the class. He noticed that it was a rather large class. Almost every Gryffindor sixth year was there, seven Hufflepuffs, nine Ravenclaws and five Slytherins, and unfortunately Draco Malfoy was one of them. Harry sighed, he hoped Malfoy wouldn’t ruin Remus’ first class.

Harry and Ron partnered whilst Hermione partnered with Gabey. Soon everyone had a partner and Remus spoke again.
‘Now, a few rules. There are to be no use of spells that could seriously harm or injure and certainly none of the Unforgivables. I will patrol around you all, taking note of who needs to brush-up and who is competent and in what spells. After half an hour, we’ll stop and see who’s left standing, those who are will then duel each other… a contest if you will. Now, on my count, 3-2-1-,’ red sparks shot out of Remus’ wand and the duelling began.

Harry and Ron smiled at each other before bowing and walking ten paces away from each other. Ron shot the first spell.
‘Expelliarmus!’ Ron called.
‘Protego!’ Harry yelled, his shield successfully absorbing Ron’s disarming spell.
‘Rictusempra!’ Harry yelled.
‘Protego!’ Ron cried, his shield absorbed Harry’s tickling curse.
The two friends smiled at each other. This could be a long duel.

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‘Impedimenta!’ Hermione cried.
‘Protego!’ Gabey called.
‘Expelliarmus!’ Gabey yelled.
‘Protego!’ Hermione hollered.
‘Stupefy!’ Hermione quick-fired.
Gabey quickly side-stepped the curse which then proceeded to blast into the wall behind her.
‘Impedimenta!’ Gabey yelled, the spell hit Hermione square in the chest before her Protego spell could take full effect. Slowly, she stepped forward toward Gabey as her wand raised toward her again.
‘Expelliarmus!’ Gabey cried. A surprised Hermione’s wand shot from her wand into Gabey’s outstretched hand.
‘Stupefy!’ Gabey called again, successfully hitting a defenceless Hermione in the chest, knocking her to the ground.

‘Excellent Miss Newton!’ Remus congratulated Gabey, before muttering, ‘Enervate’ to awaken Hermione, and then moving onto another duel, furiously scribbling something onto his parchment.

Gabey smiled sheepishly at Hermione, unsure of how she’d react to her winning. ‘Congratulations Gabey. You’re very good at duelling, I must say,’ Hermione complimented, ‘Come on, let’s go see how Harry and Ron are doing,’ Hermione said, dragging Gabey by the arm toward the two boys.

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Remus watched from a safe distance as Harry and Ron duelled each other. The duel was fast paced and the use of spells creative, especially when Ron had shot the ‘Serpentsortia’ spell at Harry who had tamed the cobra by use of his Parsel Tongue ability and then got rid of it by means of the ‘Ipera Evanesca’ spell. Yes, very creative…

‘Fernunculus!’ Harry yelled, successfully hitting Ron with the spell that causes boils on the victims face. To say that Ron’s face went as Red as his hair was understatement, Hermione and Gabey sat on the side lines of the Duel holding their sides from laughing so much.

Harry smiled almost apologetically at Ron, although Remus could tell that he wasn’t that sorry about it.

‘Finite Incantatem,’ Ron spoke, whilst pointing his wand at his own face, the boils disappearing soon afterwards from his face. Also, giving Harry the chance to disarm him.

‘Expelliarmus!’ Harry called between fits of laughter, as Ron’s wand shot from his hand and into Harry’s.
‘Petrificus Totalus!’ Harry yelled, successfully placing Ron in a full body-bind.

‘Congratulations Harry! A very creative duel, both of you!’ Remus complimented, as he freed Ron from the body-bind.

‘Er, sorry about the boils mate… the spell just came to me… I didn’t mean to…’ Harry began before he was cut off by Ron who broke out into wails of laughter.
‘Er…Ron?’ Harry asked, unsure if Ron was mad at him or not.

‘Harry, it’s fine! Why would I be mad at you? That’s one of the best duels I’ve ever had, including the ones with Fred and George. Congratulations mate!’ Ron replied.
Harry beamed. ‘Thanks Ron.’
Harry looked around the hall and noticed that all of the other duels had finished, apparently they had been the last to finish.

‘Well done everyone! I’ve seen some fantastic duelling from you all. Now, if those of you who won your duel could step forward and I’ll partner you off, so that we can finish the competition,’ Remus announced.

Harry looked at the people who he might be paired up with next. There was: Gabey, Seamus, Malfoy, Goyle, Ernie McMillan, Pavarti, Padma, Hannah Abbot, and Neville Longbottom.

Remus began to instruct who would be pairing up with whom.
‘Draco Malfoy and Gregory Goyle, Ernie McMillan and Hannah Abbot, Seamus Finnigan and Gabey Newton, Pavarti and Padma, and Harry can go with Neville.’

Harry soon found that Neville was quite the opponent these days. He successfully blocked Harry’s ‘Impedimenta’, his ‘Fernunculus’ and his ‘Rictusempra’. However, Harry finally managed to hit Neville with his, ‘Tarantallegra’ curse, causing Neville to start dancing, his legs wildly tapping beneath him, allowing Harry the chance to disarm him and then finally end the duel by yelling, ‘Stupefy!’

After Remus congratulated the two on a successful duel, Harry turned his attention to the others who were still duelling.

Malfoy had obviously won his duel by using the ‘Densaugeo’ spell, as Goyle was now hosting a pair of elongated buckteeth. Pavarti and Padma were both stunned on the floor, apparently having both used the stunning charm at the same time. Hannah had just successfully placed Ernie in a full body-bind and Gabey was talking to a newly revived Seamus after Gabey had stunned him.
That left Hannah, Gabey, Malfoy and Harry.

‘Okay, firstly lets have Hannah versus Gabey and then we’ll have Harry versus Draco. The winner of each faces each other in the next lesson,’ Remus announced to the class.
Harry sat next to Ron and Hermione as they prepared to watch Gabey and Hannah duel.

‘Gabey is very good at duelling, don’t you think Harry?’ Hermione asked whilst watching the two bow to each other.
‘Harry nodded, his eyes glued to the scene in front of him.

‘Wands at the ready. On my count, 3-2-1-’ once again red sparks shot out of Remus’ wand, as the duel began.

‘Expelliarmus!’ called Gabey.
‘Protego!’ yelled Hannah.

Harry watched as Gabey aimed her wand at Hannah’s wand arm. ‘Engorgio!’ the spell successfully hit Hannah’s right hand, her lower arm, hand and fingers enlarging ten fold. Caught surprised, Hannah dropped her wand. Gabey smiled as she called, ‘Accio Wand!’ Hannah’s wand sped toward her outstretched hand and then finally ending the duel with, ‘Locomoto Mortis’ causing Hannah’s legs to snap together and fall to the floor.

A round of applause could be heard as Remus deflated Hannah’s arm by means of the ‘Reducio’ charm, and then producing a sling (‘Ferula’) for her as it would feel heavy for a while afterwards.

‘Lastly is Harry versus Draco,’ Remus announced to the class, although the pairing was against his better judgement, he didn’t think it could hurt to place the two together in a duel, it might even allow them to blow off some steam between each other? Yeah right his mind replied in spite of himself.

‘Wands at the ready. On my count, 3-2-1-’ once again red sparks shot out of Remus’ wand, as the duel began.

Harry and Draco didn’t bother to bow to each other, neither wanting to loose eye contact with the other.

‘Rictusempra!’ Malfoy bellowed.
‘Protego!’ Harry cried. The shield absorbed the spell and he raised his wand ready to strike back.
‘Expelliarmus!’
‘Protego! Stupefy!’ Malfoy yelled in quick succession, surprising Harry with his speed.
Harry leapt to the left, managing to side-step the stunning spell.

‘Fernunculus!’ Harry yelled, his wand pointed at Malfoy’s face. The spell hit it’s target, successfully administering boils upon Malfoy’s pointed face.
Malfoy blushed crimson in embarrassment as the class roared with laughter, before his face turned into a scowl and he raised his wand to counter the attack.

‘Diffindo!’ Harry’s eyes widened as he realised the spell was going to hit him. Striking him across his midsection the cutting spell slashed across his stomach, he could feel the blood already escaping him.

‘Stupefy!’ Harry yelled.
‘Protego!’ Malfoy answered, ‘Locomoto Mortis!’ he called quickly, once again catching Harry off guard with his quick reply.
However, the spell did indeed hit Harry, he managed to stay on his feet.
‘Petrificus Totalus!’
‘Protego! Mobilicorpus!’ Malfoy again fired.
Harry was thrown from where he was previously standing, and with a flick of Malfoy’s wand found himself flying into the opposing wall.

Now he was angry. The only good thing that came out of the spell, was that it seemed to undo the leg-locker curse, other than that his body was aching, and he was sure if the cut on his stomach wasn’t healed soon, his robes would be soaked crimson.
Harry struggled to his feet, clutching his stomach as he rose. He looked up to see Malfoy in hysterics over what he had done to him, and it only fuelled his anger.

‘Petrificus Totalus! Rictusempra! Accio wand!’ Harry bellowed in quick, swift blows.

Firstly Malfoy dropped to the ground in a full body-bind, then he was placed under a rather strong tickling charm, of which Harry was sure would hurt after a while, and then lastly his wand summoned by Harry.

Applause broke out and most of the class (bar the Slytherins) swamped Harry with their congratulations and compliments. Finally, Remus announced that the class was over and that they should go back to class to get their bags and things.
He approached Harry. ‘Are you alright, Harry?’ Remus asked concernedly. In that moment he noticed that Harry’s white shirt was turning red.

He lifted it up slightly and suppressed a wince as he saw how deep the cut was. ‘I think you should see Madam Pomfrey, Harry. She’d be much better at healing your injuries than me,’ Remus said.

Harry, being too tired to even bother to complain about being in the Infirmary on the first day of school, allowed Remus to guide him to the hospital wing.

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Hey guys! So that was the 16th chapter… sorry about the delay, but what with Xmas and Coursework I’ve been really busy. Anyway, hope you liked this chapter, tell me what you think in a review!

What did you think of all the duels? I think I may have gone over the top slightly, but I’ll let you lot decide :)

Don’t forget to review!

Recommendation: Everyone go see Lemony Snicket’s: A series of Unfortunate Events at the cinema! I saw it the other day, and it’s brilliant, I think I might even buy it on video when it comes out…
Thanks to everyone who continues to review! They are very much appreciated! :D ~Sam.
PS) Happy New Year! :)



Chapter 17: Nightime Encounters
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Hey guys! This is the 17th chapter- some romance, more Snape and Gabey too! It's basically just a follow on from ch16, but everything in this chapter is important to the plot, no matter how small it may seem! :D Enjoy!
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‘You should probably head over to dinner, Harry. While there’s still some left,’ Remus muttered to Harry as they were leaving the infirmary.

Madam Pomfrey had easily healed the slash mark across Harry’s stomach from where Malfoy had used the diffindo spell on him, and Harry was still mad at Malfoy for doing it, he wondered if he’d been released from the body-bind he’d placed on him earlier?
The thought of Malfoy’s pointed face scrunched up in agony from the tickling charm, when he couldn’t move, brought a smile to Harry’s face before he decided to answer Remus.

‘Yeah, I suppose. See you later, Remus,’ Harry answered as he turned on his heel.
‘Harry?’
Harry stopped and looked over his shoulder at Remus. ‘Yeah?’
‘Don’t worry about Malfoy, he’ll get what’s coming to him… soon,’ Remus replied with a smirk.

Harry nodded before heading back to the Great Hall for dinner, he hoped Ron and Hermione hadn’t already finished, it was getting on for 7:30pm and he had detention at eight with Snape ‘lovely’, he sighed.
He made his way over to the Gryffindor table.

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Ginny sat in the library, occasionally sucking on the end of her feathered quill. She had purposely sat in a quiet corner of the room, somewhere where Madame Pince and anybody else who decided to enter the library couldn’t see her easily.

Apparently, she wasn’t hidden well enough.
‘Excuse me! Hello? Excuse me!!’ came the high pitch shrill of the librarian, Madame Pince.
Ginny shook her head, instantly breaking free from her daydream. ‘Yes?’ she asked shortly.

The librarian frowned at her before answering snappily, ‘It’s time for dinner you know! You may not want to eat, but some of us do, and I don’t like to leave students alone with the books.’

Ginny tried to refrain from rolling her eyes as she watched Madame Pince walk over to a book that had been left out, and place it on the shelf so carefully, one would think it were made of glass!

‘Okay, but can I come back after dinner?’ Ginny asked as she began to pack up some of her books.

Madame Pince looked sternly at Ginny before answering, ‘If you must!’ and with that walked over to the double doors, where she began to tap her foot impatiently, shooting glances between Ginny and a large wizarding clock on the wall.

Ginny hastily grabbed her things, not bothering to put everything in her bag, and walked out the door. Once outside, she placed the rest of her things on the floor, and knelt down to put them into her bag.

‘Well, well, well. And what do we have here?’ Malfoy’s cold voice asked, making Ginny drop the last of the books. She turned as red as her hair when she realised that it was in-fact her diary. Malfoy was too quick and snatched the scarlet covered book before Ginny could even move.

‘Hey look, it looks like Weasley’s in love with Potty!’ Draco announced to the two goons that flanked him; Crabbe and Goyle, as they laughed next to him.

‘Dear diary,
We visited Fred and George’s joke shop today, and Harry and Hermione came with us…’
, Draco began, he skipped a few paragraphs before he found something that he obviously thought was more interesting. ‘…he looked so handsome! I kept on telling myself, that Harry would never want to go out with a girl like me, that I shouldn’t let myself fall for him again! But I couldn’t help myself. I could smell his Muggle deodorant, the chocolate on his breath from a chocolate frog he’d eaten… Oh Merlin, you’re sick Weasley!’ Draco commented, as angry tears began to spill down Ginny’s cheeks.

‘Give it back! Malfoy!’ Ginny yelled angrily.
Draco laughed, amused at the girls reaction to his taunting. ‘No, let’s see what else is in here shall we?’ he asked with a sneer.
‘No, don’t!’ Ginny yelled again, this time lunging forward to grab the diary. However, Draco simply sidestepped her, and laughed even louder as Ginny fell to the floor.

‘Merlin, you’re pathetic!’ Draco spat, throwing the diary down next to her on the ground. ‘You’re right Weasley,’ Ginny looked up into those cold silver eyes, and saw only pure hatred inside them. ‘Potty would never go out with a girl like you, I mean, look at you! A pathetic little cry-baby! Not that Potter will have a chance to have a girlfriend, the Dark Lord will kill him soon, make no mistake about that!’ Draco finished, before turning to leave. Crabbe and Goyle still guffawing after him.

Ginny pulled herself up into a sitting position, as she cradled her left arm that had taken the brunt of her fall, tears still spilling down her face.

Soon, footsteps could be heard, and a female voice called out, ‘Ginny? It is Ginny isn’t it? Ron’s sister?’

Ginny looked up into brown eyes with flecks of green; it was Gabey. She nodded in reply, whilst quickly wiping her eyes with her hand.
‘Here,’ Gabey spoke softly, kneeling down next to her to hand her a handkerchief.
‘Thanks,’ Ginny whispered, before slowly getting up from the ground, grabbing the diary as she did so.

Gabey studied Ginny’s face, now that she looked at her closely, she could tell that she was Ron’s younger sister, red hair or not, the freckles were a dead give away.
‘Do you want to talk about it?’ Gabey asked cautiously, not knowing how Ginny would react, she was practically a stranger to her.

Ginny looked up to Gabey’s face, she was looking at her with an unreadable expression, at least it wasn’t sympathy, she couldn’t stand that look.
‘Yeah, okay. But not here, in the common room?’ Ginny asked the older girl.
Gabey smiled, ‘Sure.’

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Harry glared at Snape. He had arrived at the classroom at 8pm as agreed and Snape had told him to scrub all of the cauldrons in the room by hand, and without magic. It was going to take all night!

‘Potter, unless you want another detention for tomorrow night, I suggest you continue scrubbing,’ Snape snarled from his desk. He had been watching Harry like a hawk the entire time, seemingly having nothing better to do, than to watch him slave away; how he hated that man!

Harry continued scrubbing all of the cauldrons until his hands were red raw and he could feel blisters appearing on his hands. ‘I’ve finished, Sir’ Harry announced tiredly, he was sure it was gone midnight.

Snape looked up from a piece of parchment on his desk that he had taken to pouring over after apparently getting bored of watching Harry scrub.
‘Very well, you may leave,’ Snape replied, turning his attention back to the parchment. Harry quickly headed toward the door, but stopped with his hand on the handle.

‘What is it Potter?’ Snape asked without looking up from the parchment.
Harry hesitated before approaching the potion’s master’s desk. ‘I er, well…’
‘Spit it out Potter!’ Snape interrupted, now looking intently into Harry’s face, searching his eyes for some sign of what he was about to ask.

‘Well, you said that I could have my invisibility cloak back at the start of term, when you took it from me…’ Harry began, growing more and more nervous as Snape’s penetrating gaze cut through him like a knife.

Finally Snape answered. ‘Fine, wait here. Do not touch anything, Potter. I will know if you do!’ Snape reprimanded before sweeping out of the classroom door, his robes billowing behind him.

Harry looked around him. The back of the classroom held the newly scrubbed cauldrons, a reminder of just how many he had cleaned. On the right hand side of the room was the door, and then numerous shelves stacked with books that didn’t look as though they had been touched at all within the past century.
And then there was Snape’s desk.

Harry stepped a bit closer, giving himself a better view of the parchment that lay on top of it. He looked around the room, making sure that he couldn’t hear Snape’s footsteps nearby, he lent over the desk and read what was on the parchment:

Two Unicorn hairs
Phoenix tears
Two Werewolf hairs - plucked on night of transformation
Blood - taken during full moon
To be administered exactly one hour before next full moon

Number of tears?
Quantity of blood? From both?
Side affects?
How long will it last?


Harry frowned. It didn’t make any sense to him, he supposed it was ingredients for a potion that Snape was still working o, seeing as he had left unanswered questions at the bottom of the page. He thought perhaps Hermione might have some ideas though and tried to memorise the ingredients for later.
Footsteps could be heard coming up the corridor and Harry quickly straightened up and took a few steps away from the desk, so that it didn’t look as though he had been reading the parchment. He turned toward the door as Snape swiftly walked in, his eyes narrowing as he tossed Harry the invisibility cloak. ‘You’ve got your cloak now, so go,’ Snape said.
Harry didn’t argue and left as quickly as he could.

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Harry entered the Gryffindor common room, and was surprised to find Ginny and Gabey sat in front of the fire talking.

‘Er, hi,’ Harry said, unsure if he should interrupt or not.
Ginny immediately blushed when she noticed Harry stood behind them, and Harry watched as Gabey looked between the two of them and smiled.

‘I’ll leave you guys to talk, see you later,’ Gabey began, as she headed toward the portrait hole.
‘Er, Gabey? Where are you going? It’s gone midnight. If you get caught by Filch…’ Harry began.
‘Filch?!’ Gabey laughed, startling both Harry and Ginny. Gabey raised an eyebrow at their surprised expressions. ‘Don’t worry, I’ll be fine.’
‘Hang on. Here, take the invisibility cloak, I don’t know where you’re going, but just in case,’ Harry indicated the cloak, before handing it over to her.
‘Okay, but don’t wait up for me, I might be a while,’ Gabey called, finally walking through the portrait hole.

Harry continued to look at the hole, still wondering where it was that Gabey could be heading.
‘Harry?’
Harry turned to look at Ginny. The fire light was reflecting on her red hair, lighting up her soft features and highlighting her sparkling blue eyes. Harry moved closer to the sofa, making his way around the side, never letting his eyes fall from her gentle face, finally he found himself sat beside her, still mesmerised by those eyes.

Ginny blushed and let out a nervous giggle as she realised Harry was staring at her. Then her face turned serious as she remembered what happened earlier that night, and she fond herself not wanting to remain there alone with Harry; she had to escape those emerald green eyes.
‘Ginny? Something wrong?’ Harry asked concernedly when he noticed the apprehension in her face.
Ginny sighed before turning back to look at Harry. ‘Harry, we need to talk.’
Harry gulped, that didn’t sound good.

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Gabey stealthily walked along the seventh floor corridor, she found a statue and stuffed the invisibility cloak behind it, hiding it from view. It would only get in the way anyway. Taking a look around her, she thought about what she wanted to do, and in a blink of an eye, she morphed into her Animagus form, a sleek, black cat with her ‘normal’ brown with green fleck, eyes.
She quickly bounded down the steps, carefully watching the staircases, so that they didn’t change on her unexpectedly.

Soon, she found herself in the dungeons, more precisely, Slytherin domain.
She morphed back into her human form, and smiled as she approached the tapestry that hid the Slytherin common room entrance from view.

She watched amusedly as a snake slithered to the centre of the tapestry and asked in a hiss, ‘Password?’
Smiling she answered, ‘Devil’s snare’
The tapestry pulled itself back revealing a door. She pushed it open and walked inside.

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Harry stared at Ginny in disbelief. She had just told him everything that had happened earlier that night with Malfoy, and by so doing, told him her feelings toward him as well. To say that he was surprised at her openness, was to say the least.

‘D-do you really feel a-all t-that, about m-me?’ Harry stuttered.
Ginny nodded and smiled. ‘I’ve always held a certain fondness for you Harry, ever since you rescued me from the chamber. But I thought you didn’t feel the same way about me, that’s why I started dating other guys. I-I wanted to make you jealous I guess,’ Ginny answered truthfully, blushing as she finished.

Harry smiled. ‘I am an idiot. I never realised! Merlin, and there I was wasting my time with Cho!’ Harry laughed, causing Ginny to laugh too, as she remembered Harry telling her about the date that they had, had in the tea shop in Hogsmeade village.

‘I guess, what I mean to say is that, I feel the same way too, Ginny,’ Harry admitted, blushing crimson.
Ginny smiled, surprised at his response, and leant over to kiss him. Harry lent forward to, about to reciprocate when the portrait hole opened and Gabey walked in, a large grin plastered on her face. Harry and Ginny quickly pulled apart.

‘Oh, um… sorry, don’t mind me!’ Gabey apologised whilst winking at Ginny as she passed her to head on up to bed, placing the cloak on the sofa as she passed.
Ginny turned back to Harry. ‘We should probably be getting to bed too, it’s late,’ Ginny said quietly, reluctance evident in her voice.
Harry smiled. ‘I’ll see you in the morning, Ginny. Goodnight,’ Harry replied as Ginny got up from the sofa. ‘Goodnight, Harry,’ Ginny whispered as she placed a chaste kiss on his lips.
‘Night,’ Harry repeated as he placed a finger to his lips, where Ginny had kissed him.

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Hey guys! Sorry it took so long to get this chapter up, but I have been really, really busy with coursework, I’ve still got loads to do now in fact, so I’m not certain when the next chapter will be up yet?

Anyway, Don’t forget to review!!:) Hope you all liked this chapter!? I wanted to show some more of Gabey’s character, seeing as a lot of people have said that they are not warming up to her as of yet. I also had some romance in this chapter, seeing as people seem to be 50/50 over whether they want romance more in this story or not, and since the last chapter focused in on duelling, I thought it was only fair to have romance in the next- so sorry to those who don’t like romance, and probably felt queasy half way through the chapter, lol :D

Anyway, tell me what you think, and I’ll try to make the next chapter longer, as I am well aware that this chapter isn’t that long.

Also, what do you think of the new banner? I love it, personally- it was made by Iced_Cherriez, (Thanks again!)~Sam.


Chapter 18: Payback
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Chapter 18: Payback.


Harry awoke early the next morning. He had a strange feeling, like butterflies in his stomach. Yet it wasn’t out of dread or fear. For a moment he sat up in bed thinking about everything that had happened the night before. Finally it hit him, like a cool breeze washing over him on a sticky summer’s day. Ginny.

He remembered how the red head had explained her long suppressed feelings toward him, and how he too, had admitted his secret longing for her. And then it had happened. Ginny had kissed him. On the lips!
The butterfly feeling seemed to intensify as the brief encounter replayed over and over in his mind. He hadn’t noticed Ron stood at the foot of his bed looking at him strangely.

‘Er- Harry? Harry? Oi, mate!’

Harry was dragged from his thoughts by his best friend’s shouts. He quickly rearranged his expression into that of sleepy confusion. Ron just continued to stare at him before a smirk flitted across his lips.

‘Come on, we’re going to be late for breakfast if you don’t hurry up,’ Ron finally announced, causing Harry to jump up quickly before falling to the floor as his legs were twisted in the bed sheets.
Ron laughed.

‘Ha ha, very funny! Tell Hermione I’ll be down in a minute,’ Harry answered as he managed to extricate himself from the sheets.
‘Okay, but don’t take too long!’ Ron called as he closed the dormitory door behind him.
Harry quickly raced into the bathroom to get ready.

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Harry entered the great hall with Ron and Hermione either side of him. They were arguing over him; something about Ron’s grotesque eating habits. Silently Harry agreed with Hermione; Ron’s manners at the dinner table were enough to put anyone off their food! Not that he would ever tell Ron that of course.
They reached the Gryffindor table and Harry instantly noticed that Ginny was already seated opposite from him. She blushed and gave him a small nervous smile as she caught him looking at her, to which Harry returned inconspicuously as he realised that Ron and Hermione were still next to him.

Ron grabbed four rashers of bacon, a large helping of toast and some fried egg, then poured himself some pumpkin juice. He then continued to see how many bits of toast he could place inside his mouth at the same time, much to everyone’s distaste.

‘Ugh, Ron! That’s disgusting!’ Hermione exclaimed, earning Ron a few disgusted looks as people turned to see what he was doing.
‘What?! I’m a growing boy!’ Ron whined in a mock way, causing Hermione to roll her eyes at him before continuing with her own breakfast.

Harry turned his attention to the doors as a lot of yelling could be heard.
‘What the-?’ Harry began, but his question was soon answered as a very angry Draco Malfoy entered the great hall.

‘Professor Snape! Do something! Professor?!’ Malfoy called desperately to the staff table. Although it appeared that Snape was not at the table. Only a sniggering Minerva, chuckling Dumbledore and hysterical Remus who were all hiding behind their hands.
Harry tried to contain his laughter along with the rest of the hall as Malfoy entered with magically charmed hair that was continuously changing colour from luminous pink, to yellow, to green, to blue and then back to pink again. Harry noticed that Malfoy’s robes had a pink tint to them too. He finally burst out laughing as the words: ‘Gryffindor’s Rule!’ appeared across them.
Malfoy screamed as he too noticed the words and ran from the hall as fast as he could.

‘That was priceless! Did you see the look on Malfoy’s face!? I wonder who did it?’ Ron questioned, whilst wiping tears of mirth from the corners of his eyes. Hermione had forgotten all about her argument with Ron, and she too was laughing along with everyone else.

Harry turned still smiling and noticed Gabey for the first time. She winked at him with a mischievous smile before taking a sip of her pumpkin juice.
‘You?’ Harry mouthed soundlessly in awe of her creative talents.
Gabey smiled again before nodding.
Harry smiled back. Gabey may have paid Malfoy back this time for what he did to Ginny, but if he ever tried something with her again, it would be he, who paid him back.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Harry, Ron and Hermione had already left the great hall when professor Dumbledore approached Gabey at the Gryffindor table as she was re-arranging her bag for class.

‘Miss Newton? May I have a word with you outside?’
Gabey looked up into Dumbledore’s twinkling blue eyes and nodded. ‘Of course professor,’ she replied politely.

Dumbledore led Gabey out of the main doors and into a side corridor that was previously unoccupied, he then turned and looked at Gabey seriously.

‘Miss Newton, I know that it was you who, shall we say, pranked, Mr Malfoy earlier this morning. I was wondering if you could enlighten me as to why?’ Dumbledore asked softly. There was no sternness in his voice only keen interest as to her reasoning.
‘I was merely repaying a debt, professor,’ Gabey answered cryptically.
Dumbledore nodded his understanding. ‘I see,’ he answered. There was a pause where Gabey wondered what was going to happen next, she suddenly wondered if pulling a prank on someone, even someone as vile as Malfoy, was an offence worthy of expulsion?

‘Well, that will be all Miss Newton, try not to pull too many pranks. Although, I dare say, we could all use a laugh in such times,’ Dumbledore announced smiling slightly. Gabey nodded, also smiling, and with a quick, Thank you professor, she was running toward her next lesson.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Harry rested his head between his hands as he read from the overly large text book that had been assigned for that years’ Transfiguration classes. Professor Mcgonagal had asked everyone to read the first chapter of the book called, ‘Transfigure the world around you and those in it successfully’, by Miranda Goshawk, before attempting the spell that would allow the caster to transfigure a piece of furniture, such as a desk or chair, into another inanimate object, ranging from anything between a lamp or a ball. The end result was reliant upon the caster’s thoughts.

So far, Hermione had successfully transfigured a chair into a ball, Ron had unsuccessfully tried to transfigure a desk into a lamp, and Harry had managed to transfigure a chair into a muggle alarm clock.

‘Wow Harry! It’s difficult to get the clock to work as well as to transfigure it exactly as it should be. What with all the workings inside the clock for it to be able to work! How did you manage that?!’ Hermione exclaimed as she closely examined the clock that was working perfectly.

Harry shrugged before picking up the small clock. ‘I don’t know. It was the first thing that came to mind- my muggle alarm clock at Privet Drive.’

‘Ten points to Gryffindor, Mr Potter. That’s an advanced piece of transfiguration you’ve accomplished there Potter, well done!’ Mcgonagal praised before moving over to help Neville, who was having trouble with his desk as he had somehow managed to bring it to life, and it was now chasing him around the room.

By the end of the lesson, Ron had only managed to transfigure half his desk into a lamp, making the desk look like some sort of weird invention out of a muggle sci-fi movie.

‘What’s next?’ Harry asked as they left Mcgonagal’s classroom. He couldn’t be bothered to pull out his own timetable that would most likely be at the bottom of his backpack by now, and instead relied on Hermione, who seemed to be able to retain all three of their timetable’s in her memory perfectly.

‘Charms,’ Hermione answered without a moments hesitation. Ron groaned.
‘Its not that bad! We’ve got lunch afterwards, then defence and then potions,’ Hermione supplied, causing Ron to groan even louder.

‘Great! That means I’ve got bloody Trelawney and Firenze later,’ Ron mumbled.
Harry turned to look at his friend having forgotten that Ron was taking Divination this year. ‘I still can’t believe you passed your OWL in that, Ron. How’s it going anyway?’ Harry inquired interestedly as they headed toward the tiny professor Flitwick’s class.

Ron seemed uncomfortable for a moment and dragged a large hand through his carrot-top hair. ‘Er- fine, you know,’ he replied shortly.
Hermione raised an eyebrow but remained silent as they approached the classroom.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

‘Ugh, charms was murder! I’m never going to pass my NEWT in that class!’ Ron complained as the trio entered the great hall for lunch. It had been a revision lesson mostly of what they already knew, but for some reason, Ron couldn’t seem to concentrate, in the end after three destroyed quills, and two explosions later, he had finally given up.

‘Don’t worry, I’m sure it’ll get better, Ron,’ Hermione reassured whilst Harry just nodded to her words.
Ron sighed before tucking into the copious amounts of food that he had added to his plate.

Gabey entered the hall and approached the Gryffindor table taking a seat next to Hermione and opposite Harry. ‘Looking forward to the duel then?’ Gabey asked as an attempt to engage Harry in some conversation.

Harry looked at her questioningly. ‘Er- what duel?’ Harry asked uncertainly.
Gabey rolled her eyes and laughed. ‘Don’t tell me you forgot, Harry!? You know, our duel… in Defence?’ Gabey urged.

Finally, realisation dawned on Harry, and with it the butterfly feeling again. Although, this time he was certain that it was from nervousness. Gabey was extremely good at duelling from what he had seen.

Gabey smiled reassuringly having seen Harry’s eyes widen slightly at the mention of the duel that would be after they finished lunch. ‘Don’t worry, from what I’ve heard, I’m sure you’ll of beat me before I can even fire an offensive spell!’ Gabey laughed.
Harry laughed with her, albeit nervously.

‘Anyway, see you in a minute,’ Gabey called as she got up and left the Gryffindor table again, having not eaten.

‘I don’t know why you’re so nervous Harry? I’m sure you’ll win,’ Hermione reassured him once Gabey was out of sight.

Harry blinked. ‘I’m not nervous of my duel with Gabey!’ he replied defensively, to which Ron and Hermione both turned to look at him with raised eyebrows. ‘I’m not!’ he cried desperately.

‘Boys! Honestly!’ Hermione replied in an exasperated tone of voice as she rolled her eyes. ‘Come on, we don’t want to be late to Remus’ class, do we?’ Ron and Harry gathered their things up quickly and proceeded to follow Hermione out the double doors.

As Harry followed slightly behind his two friends and they descended to the second floor corridor, he couldn’t understand why his feeling of unease would not go away, or why he had snapped so defensively at Hermione the way that he had. He realised he was lucky that she was mature enough not to snap right back at him, and thanked Merlin for small mercies.

Soon he found himself inside the defence classroom waiting for Remus to appear, as he took a seat at the front of the class between Ron and Hermione.

Harry turned to see Gabey sat by herself at the back of the classroom busy reading a rather large book that Harry didn’t recognise as being part of the required reading for any of the courses. The sound of the door opening and closing brought his attention back to the front of the classroom, and he smiled when Remus entered the room and leaned against the front of the desk that Harry sat in front of.

‘Good afternoon class. As promised, today we will be finishing the small duelling contest that began in your last lesson. Now if my memory serves me correct, I believe that our final contenders are Mr Potter and Miss Newton,’ Remus announced. He turned firstly to Harry and then to Gabey as he called out each of their names, indicating for them to come to the front of the class.

Harry was still getting out of his chair when Gabey swept past him from the back of the class, wand in hand. She’s keen, Harry thought.
Remus turned to look at Harry as his thoughts drifted to Remus’ mind too, but he remained silent as he waited for the two to take up battle positions at the front of the class.

‘On my count, 3-2-1!’ Red sparks emitted from Remus’ wand and Harry was the first to strike with, ‘Expelliarmus!’

‘Protego!’ Gabey hollered, successfully blocking Harry’s disarming spell.
‘Furunculous!’ Gabey yelled and Harry side stepped the spell before it hit him.
‘Rictusempra!’ Harry cried to which Gabey quickly yelled ‘Protogeum!’ sending Harry’s own spell back at him.
Surprised by the spells switch in direction, Harry threw himself to the floor and allowed the spell to pass over his head and hit the wall behind him. He looked up to see Gabey smiling mischievously at him, and he couldn’t help but roll his eyes at his own stupidity to not know what she was going to do.

He quickly got to his feet again and fired ‘Stupefy!’ at Gabey who remained where she was. Harry’s heart raced as he realised that he was going to win, that he had beaten her, when suddenly, Gabey whirled around. Her robes spiralling around her and her long hair, that she had worn down for the day, fanning out as she did so.

Harry watched in awe as his spell hit the wall behind where she had stood, and gaped at Gabey when she stopped spinning, and was now stood far off to the side of where she had been only moments before. Harry realised that it must have been some type of spell that she had used, in order for her to dodge his quick-fire spell unscathed, but decided to question her about it later, he was still in the middle of a duel after all.

‘Serpent Sortia!’ Gabey yelled and a large cobra sprang from the end of her wand and headed toward Harry, its fangs bared and ready to strike.
Harry took a step back from the snake and lowered his wand, thinking that he would use the snake to his advantage.

Harry concentrated on talking to the snake, and in what sounded like English to himself and was Parsel Tongue to everyone else he said, ‘Hey, you don’t really want to attack me do you? I’m all skin and bone!’ Harry watched as the snake stopped in its tracks, obviously contemplating what Harry had said.

Gabey watched with wide eyes as she heard Harry speaking in Parsel Tongue, but she quickly regained her composure and raised her wand ready to strike again.

‘Want to play a game?’ Harry asked cryptically of the snake. The snake considered him for a moment before nodding his head.
‘Okay, see that girl over there?’ Harry asked, indicating Gabey, to which the snake replied with a hiss, ‘Yes.’
Harry continued. ‘Well, what I want you to do is…’


Remus watched with interest as Harry conversed with the snake for some time. He hadn’t known of Harry being a Parsel Mouth and vowed to ask him about it later when he got the chance. Movement from the snake drew his attention back to the duel.

Harry couldn’t help but chuckle slightly as he watched Gabey back away in fear from the snake that was now skirting dangerously close to her ankles, continuously raising its head and arching its body as though ready to strike. Of course, it wouldn’t though. Harry had seen to that.

‘Nice snake. Good snake…’ Gabey said timidly, apparently afraid of snakes, causing the class to laugh as she jumped up onto a desk to escape its fangs. Harry laughed at the scene but decided to give her a chance by getting rid of the snake, he wanted to see just how good she was, without a giant cobra chasing after her.

‘Ipera Evanesca!’ Harry called, successfully ridding Gabey of the presence of the snake. Gabey looked at Harry surprised, but quickly smiled at him before jumping down from the desk; ready to continue the duel, having learned never to use the snake summoning spell when duelling with Harry again.

‘Querrempus!’ Gabey yelled at a surprised Harry. A purple light struck Harry in the chest and he was thrown into the air and held there, floating.
Harry waved his legs frantically, finding that he was stuck where he was for the time being.
‘Stupefy!’ Harry hollered from his new position in the air. He watched as Gabey merely side-stepped the curse, the red beam hitting the opposite wall.

‘Combinus Tarrenstupus!’ Gabey yelled. This time, two beams of light flew toward Harry, a red and a blue. Not wanting to know the effects of a combined spell, Harry quickly pointed his wand at himself saying ‘Finite Incantatum!’

Remus winced as Harry ungracefully dropped himself to the floor from three feet up, landing in a heap on the floor as the combination spell soared over his head.
Harry dragged himself to his feet, deciding that he’d had enough, it was obvious that Gabey was good at duelling, that was undeniable. He vowed to ask her to teach him some of the spells she had used, but not before he beat her in the duel.

Gabey and Harry now stood 10 paces apart, as they had done at the beginning of their duel. A look of determination on Harry’s face whilst Gabey’s expression was unreadable.
‘Rictusempra!’ Harry shouted, successfully striking Gabey with the tickling charm. Some of the class laughed as Gabey tried to contain her laughter at being tickled to death by the curse, whilst Harry decided to use the opportunity to his advantage.

‘Mobilicorpus!’ Harry called, pointing his wand at Gabey. The spell hit her squarely in the chest and using his wand, Harry directed for her giggling form to be manoeuvred behind him. Harry smiled as he realised that his plan had worked, Gabey now had her back to him, and for her fit of uncontrollable laughter, could nothing to stop him.

‘Finite Incantatum! Petrificus Totalus! Accio Wand!’ Harry yelled in quick succession, making Remus and Hermione smile at his quick firing. Firstly, Gabey was released from the tickle charm but before she could react, she was hit by the full body bind and then finally her and taken from her by Harry’s summoning charm.
Harry had won, Gabey had lost; but Harry had to admit that it was far from an easy win.

‘Well done, Harry!’ Remus congratulated as he freed Gabey from the body bind. ‘Class dismissed!’ Harry smiled to Remus before approaching Gabey. ‘Here,’ he offered his hand to her once she was in a sitting position. Gabey looked at his hand and then smiled as she took hold of it.

‘Thanks, and sorry, about the um, Querrem spell, I didn’t realise you hadn’t studied it here at Hogwarts yet, I never would have used it otherwise…’ Gabey began, blushing more and more as she babbled on and on.

Harry laughed. ‘Your sorry!? I don’t mind, really!’ Harry added as he noticed the disbelieving look on Gabey’s face, ‘I should be sorry, you know, about telling the snake to pretend that it wanted to eat you, and then with the tickling charm…’ Harry explained. Now it was Gabey’s turn to laugh. ‘Don’t worry about it, Harry! Merlin, we are a pair aren’t we!?’

‘Well, how about we teach each other some of the spells then?’ Harry asked. Gabey seemed uncertain for a moment before nodding yes.
‘Okay, sounds good. Will you be doing the um… DA? Is it?’ Gabey asked uncertainly. Harry cocked an eyebrow. ‘How do you know about the DA? It was a secret organisation last year.’

‘Hermione told me last night in the dorm room,’ Gabey replied simply.
‘Oh, well that explains it then,’ Harry answered, ‘Well, since you know about it, you might as well join, that’s if you want to of course?’

‘Of course I’ll join, if you’ll have me. But your definitely doing it then? Only, Hermione didn’t seem sure whether you would or not?’
‘Yeah, I haven’t spoken much about it to them yet, but I’ll talk to you about it later. Come on, we’re going to be late to potions!’ Harry exclaimed.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Snape had already began the last lesson of the day as Gabey led the way into the large dungeon like classroom.
‘Miss Newton, Mr Potter you are late! Do not be in future classes, or I shall be forced to give you both detention! Take your seats,’ Snape ordered.
Harry and Gabey gave each other a significant look before heading toward the back of the classroom.

‘Instructions are on the board, I expect silence whilst you brew this potion, and I warn you to think twice before you decide to disturb me! Begin!’

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Severus Snape watched as the students began to carelessly gather ingredients and cauldrons from the back of the room. Satisfied that he was unneeded, he began reading through his latest notes.
‘Still need the blood and werewolf hair. Hmm. The next full moon is in a weeks time, that puts the potion back another five weeks… Oh well, who cares, its only for them! Now, how am I to get the blood?’ Severus thought to himself.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

‘That was the weirdest potions class yet! Snape didn’t even come to inspect our work! Or to criticise yours, Harry! I wonder what he’s working on?’ Hermione mused as they headed toward the great hall for dinner with Gabey, and where they had planned to meet Ron.
‘Who cares!? I think I actually managed to get the potion correct, what without Snape sneering over my shoulder at it every five minutes! I may of actually gained a decent grade for once!’ Harry exclaimed as he shook his head.

‘Well, whatever it was, its obviously important,’ Gabey said. Hermione nodded in agreement as they entered the great hall to find Ron wasn’t there yet.

‘Hmm, guess Ron’s class hasn’t been let out yet?’ Hermione observed as she scanned the Gryffindor table for people she knew to be in Ron’s Divination class.

‘Didn’t you hear?’ someone from the Hufflepuff table asked. Hermione and the other two turned to notice that it was Ernie McMillan. ‘Hear what? Hermione asked interested.
‘Well, no ones sure what happened exactly, but we were in Divination and Ron just kind of, I dunno, flipped out!’ Hermione gasped while Harry stared at Ernie wide-eyed.
‘What d’you mean? Flipped out?’ Harry asked worried for his friend.
‘Go see for yourself, last I heard Firenze took him to the hospital wing…’
Harry, Hermione and Gabey shot off out the doors before Ernie could even finish what he was saying, and headed toward the hospital wing that was situated on the first floor, luckily enough, (Firenze wouldn’t have made it up the steps.)

Harry entered first, followed by Hermione and lastly Gabey. Ron was laid on a bed furthest away from the door just staring up at the ceiling, apparently he hadn’t noticed their arrival.

‘Um, maybe I should wait outside?’ Gabey asked shyly, not really feeling as though she should be there.
‘Er, yeah okay, give us a minute,’ Harry answered as Gabey slipped back out through the doors.

‘No, no, absolutely not! I will not allow visitors to see Mr Weasley, when he is in such a fragile condition! You’ll just have to wait until tomorrow…’ Madam Pomfrey reprimanded as she noticed Harry and Hermione in the room.

‘Please Madam Pomfrey, it might be good for him to have visitors!’ Hermione tried uselessly. The nurse simply shook her head no, and ushered them back outside the doors to where Gabey was still waiting for them.

‘Well, can you tell us what’s wrong him then?’ Harry asked frustrated at not being allowed to talk to his mate, ‘Please?’
The nurse sighed dramatically before checking the corridor for eavesdroppers. ‘Fine!’ she cried exasperatedly. ‘Mr Weasley suffered a severe er migraine during class and has since then not allowed me to examine him, neither has he spoken about what apparently happened. Now, that is all I can tell you for now. You’d best get back to dinner. You may come back tomorrow morning if you wish,’ Madam Pomfrey offered.
‘Thank you,’ Hermione answered the nurse as she swept by them to enter the infirmary. ‘There’s something more to this, I just know there is,’ Hermione whispered to Harry and Gabey.
‘We’ll check on him in the morning, see what he says then, okay ‘Mione?’ Harry asked to which she nodded, casting a longing look at the closed hospital doors as they headed back toward the great hall for dinner.

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Hey Guys! I am sooooo sorry that this took forever for me to post! I’ve tried to make it up to you with this extra long chapter (it’s longer than I planned it to be! :) and it has lots of various things in it like a bit of sappy romance, some action with the duelling, a little bit of Remus, some more Gabey mystery stuff with the spells that she knows… um, oh, Snape too! Lol and the thing with Ron which is also a mystery at the moment! :p I’m planning on updating sometime soon but I’ve just been given my exam paper for photography A Level (Good luck to everyone taking exams at the mo. Or soon! ;) ) so I’m going to be extra special busy for a while, so I’ll try my best okay??

Anyway, don’t forget to review! :p And, to all those people who read but never review I just wanted to say, Pwease!!!!! Two seconds is literally all it takes to review, you just write something like ‘Good!’ or ‘:D’ or ‘Bad’ or ‘Okay’ or ‘Update Soon!’ Or whatever you want to write!!! Lol. Just, please could you review??? Thanks! :D ~Sam.

PS) Recommendation: Cinema: House of flying Daggers! (With Subtitles) I thought it was Brilliant! :) Oh, and ‘Meet the Fockers!’ (Funny!) lol


Chapter 19: The Woes of Ron Weasley
  [Printer Friendly Version of This Chapter]

Warnings: Contains some mild ref's to rape and violence.
Read important A/N at end!!



The night sky was blanketed with sparkling stars and the half-crescent moon shimmered down upon the lake of Hogwarts, illuminating the forbidden forest and the castle.

Inside the castle, all of the students were already in their respective houses. Supposedly asleep, whilst the professors stalked the torch lit hallways, searching for possible miscreant students .

Ron lay in the hospital wing, flat on his back staring up at the ceiling. He had heard when Harry and Hermione had entered the room earlier in the evening, asking Madam Pomfrey if they could see him. He was glad that the nurse had denied them. He didn’t want them to see him like this. Weak and helpless.
He squeezed his eyes tightly together as another vision flashed before his mind’s eye. People screaming… Muggles… families with young children… children crying for their fallen parents… a high pitched cackle… green light… wide, lifeless, unseeing eyes… red, deepest crimson red… blood…
Ron opened his eyes wide, panting as a trickle of sweat ran down the side of his face.
‘Merlin help me,’ he cried.

***


‘Do you think Ron will be let out of the hospital today, Harry?’ Hermione asked.
It was the following morning and Harry, Hermione and Gabey were walking down to breakfast together.

Harry shook his head. ‘I dunno. He just seemed really… well, just not…’
‘Not Ron’ Hermione supplied with a sigh.
Harry nodded. ‘We’ll go see him before first lesson starts, yeah?’ Harry asked to which Hermione nodded. ‘Gabey? You coming too?’
Gabey looked hesitant and so Harry quickly said, ‘You don’t have to if you don’t want to, we’ll understand.’
‘No. No, it’s not that, it’s just… Well, you guys have known each other for years, and I don’t want to intrude or anything… I don’t think Ron would like me being there,’ she finished quietly.
‘Nonsense!’ Hermione exclaimed, surprising both of them. ‘Of course Ron won’t mind you coming to visit him! Your our friend, Gabey. And Ron’s friend too, I’m sure he’d be happy to see you.’
Gabey nodded reassured. ‘Okay, I’ll come with you,’ she announced.

***


‘Morning, Mr Weasley! And how are we feeling today?’ Madam Pomfrey asked. Ron scrunched his eyes up in disgust at a spot of offending light that was glinting in his left eye.
‘Better,’ he replied shortly. The nurse gave him a searching look, as though she were waiting for him to elaborate. Ron remained mute. The nurse sighed.

‘Very well, Mr Weasley. You are free to go,’ Ron made to bolt from his bed before the surprisingly strong arms of Madam Pomfrey held him back, pushing him back on to his bed. ‘If you had let me finish, I was going to tell you that you were free to go once the Headmaster visits you,’ Madam Pomfrey finished.

Ron gulped. ‘W-W-Why?’ he stuttered.
The nurse goggled at Ron as if he had sprouted an extra head. ‘Why what, Mr Weasley?’ she asked exasperated.
‘Why, is Professor Dumbledore coming to see me?’ he asked slowly.
‘Because the Headmaster always comes to see my patients before they leave,’ she answered, however just as she finished the doors to the infirmary creaked open as professor Dumbledore walked in.
‘Ah, our patient is awake I see,’ Dumbledore began, his eyes twinkling madly at Ron.
‘Yes. Although I’m not entirely sure if he is coherent yet?’ Madam Pomfrey chimed as Ron squirmed under both of their gazes.
‘I’m better. Fine in fact, when can I go?’ Ron asked pleadingly. Madam Pomfrey sighed before returning to her office, muttering something about patients always wanting to leave before they should.

Dumbledore perched on the edge of Ron’s bed and surveyed his pale face over his half-moon glasses. ‘I wonder if you could tell me what happened during yesterdays Divination class?’ he began, but upon noticing Ron’s hesitant face he added, ‘But I do have a few theories of my own, I was wondering if you could clear them up for me?’ he asked gently.

Ron sighed. There was no way he was going to get out of it, better to come clean now and get it out of the way.
Taking a deep breath Ron began to re-count what happened the day before.
‘I was in Divination, Firenze’s class. We were studying the stars on the enchanted ceiling he’s got. He told us to relax… you know, like meditate or something,’ Ron looked up at Dumbledore to make sure he was following him. The headmaster merely nodded for him to continue.

‘At first there was nothing, just the stars at that funny incense stuff that he burns… Anyway, then it changed. I wasn’t in the classroom anymore, I was in a house. A Muggle house, a family was there. They were normal family, a husband, wife and two kids…’ Ron shook his head slightly, seemingly he had begun to get lost in his thoughts.

‘Then there was light, blue light. The door to the room was blown apart and cloaked men; Death Eaters entered.’ Ron turned to look at Dumbledore again who was keenly hanging off of Ron’s every word.
‘Go on, what happened next? What did you see?’ he prodded lightly.

Ron nodded. ‘The Death Eaters. They came into the room, started shouting at the man, I couldn’t make out what they were saying, but the woman started crying, she hid the two children behind her, trying to keep them out of view. They put the man into a body-bind… made him watch… the-they er… grabbed the woman, tried to er… do stuff to her…’ Ron ran a nervous hand through his rumpled hair.

‘They… they…ki-killed the ch-children… the woman tried to stop them, but couldn’t get away. One of the Death Eaters hit her, she hit her head against the side of a table and it either killed her or she was knocked-out, I didn’t get to see…’
Ron took in another shaky breath, preparing himself for the rest of the tale.

‘The Death Eaters weren’t happy. They released the man from the bind, he tried to fight them, but he was out numbered…’ he trailed off.
there was nothing he could do… nothing I could do, Ron thought to himself.
‘Ronald?’ Dumbledore inquired seeing that Ron had stopped speaking.
Ron shook himself physically. ‘Sorry.’
‘He was out numbered, nothing he could do. They were laughing at him, mocking him. It was sick…’
‘They roughed him up a bit, taunting him the whole time about how they’d had his wife. Then they killed him too. That’s when I woke up,’ Ron finished quietly, flashes of the vision running through his mind.

Dumbledore surveyed his student over his half-moon glasses sombrely. There was more to this than what was being told. Finally realisation dawned on him and he found himself looking at the young Weasley with something akin to pity.

‘This is not the first time that you have experienced something such as this, is it?’ he asked quietly, already knowing the answer.
Ron nodded.
Dumbledore sighed as he flattened his robes around him. ‘No child should have to see the things that you have witnessed, Ronald. No child at all…’ Dumbledore murmured.

‘Sir?’ Ron asked almost timidly. Dumbledore looked up at him.
‘Do you know why I’m having these… visions? I mean, I only started having them this summer…’ Ron asked.

‘Do you remember when you and your friends went to the Department of Mysteries term?’ Dumbledore asked.
‘Of course, how could I forget,’ Ron shuddered at the memory.

‘And do you remember being attacked by a brain with tentacles?’ Ron nodded, not quite following the reasoning behind the Headmaster’s questioning. ‘Well, if I am not very much mistaken, the thing that attacked you, Mr Weasley, was the very brain of Madame Martoix the famous French Seer,’ Dumbledore informed.

Ron gaped at Dumbledore slack jawed. ‘Does that mean then, that I’m a… a S-S-Seer?’ he eventually spluttered.
Dumbledore gave Ron a long look. ‘No, it does not. You are not a Seer Mr Weasley. Seer’s are born, not made.’

Ron seemed to sigh in relief for a moment before immediately tensing again. ‘Then what are these, these visions then? Why am I having them if I’m not a Seer?’ he asked dumbfounded.

‘I do not know , I’m afraid. I shall have to look into the matter, however, I think it is clear that this new gift, however burdensome it may seem now, could be used to our advantage, if used wisely,’ Dumbledore answered cryptically.

Ron sighed, he had a feeling that he wasn’t going to like what was coming next.
‘You’re going to give me more lessons aren’t you?’ he asked sulkily.

Dumbledore chuckled lightly. ‘No not lessons, Mr Weasley.’ Ron looked up at him hopefully before Dumbledore continued, ‘Training,’ Ron raised an eyebrow in question, but Dumbledore just smiled knowingly.

***


Harry, Hermione and Gabey raced toward the hospital wing before their first lesson, Care of Magical Creatures for Harry, and Ancient Runes for Hermione and Gabey. However, they skidded to a halt as they saw Ron himself, walking away from the infirmary doors.

‘Hi guys!’ Ron called happily as he noticed them down the corridor.
The trio shared a significant look as they approached him. ‘Hey Ron. Madam Pomfrey’s letting you go already?’ Harry asked.
Ron nodded. ‘Yeah, so come on. We don’t want to be late to Hagrid’s class, do we?’ he replied, already walking towards the entrance hall.
‘Well, he certainly looks a lot better than yesterday. Maybe he really is fine?’ Hermione offered, albeit uncertainly. Harry and Gabey looked at each other.
‘Well come on, we can ask him about it later,’ Harry announced before running after Ron to catch up. The two girls headed back over to the staircase in the entrance hall, headed up to Ancient Runes class.


Hey Guys! I am so sorry that this took sooo long to post!! I’ll try not to do it again with the next chapter, but I’m still behind on coursework etc and exams are coming soon too :(
On a lighter note; thanks to everyone for the wonderful reviews, I really enjoy reading them! So don’t forget to review this chapter once you’ve read it too! ;p

Also, I know this chapter is short, it was going to be a lot longer, but I’ve been told to do my coursework instead, sigh. Anyway, I’ll update again asap with the next chapter, that will be a follow-on from this one. It will be called ‘The Enigma’ and will feature a substantial amount of Snape and Gabey in it. This is the chapter that you’ve been waiting for… where you finally find out what Gabey’s doing at Hogwarts (to an extent) and about her past and how she’s connected to Snape!! :p
Anyway, I’ll post that asap, once I get it written! Thanks again!! ~Sam :D

PS) Go read an amazing fic called ‘Resonance’ you can find it on my fave stories list toward the bottom. It’s extremely well written and has long chappies, but is severely lacking in reviews, when it deserves tonnes more! Go read!! ;)

PPS) Some of you may have already noticed, but I've also written two new stories, which you can find via my user page, check them out too! (It will give you something to read when your waiting for the next chapter to come out! lol :p )


Edit: Hey guys, I have no computer, and so Internet either, BUT, I'm hoping to get a new one asap, so bare with me... I'm definitly not going to abandon the story, so just keep checking to see if I've updated yet or not :D ~Sam.

Chapter 20: The Enigma
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Ch20: The Enigma.



The first week of school was finally over and the sixth years were already knee-deep in homework projects for all their classes. Ron had finally come out of his reverie and told Harry and Hermione what he had been seeing in his ‘visions’; to say that they were shocked would be a large understatement. They were horrified at some of the things Ron had explained he had seen. Ron had asked them to refrain from divulging the whole truth to Ginny about the ‘visions’, he knew Ginny had suffered for months from nightmares after her experience in the chamber in her first year, this was likely to only bring back bad memories for her.

Over the weekend, Harry had visited Remus’ chambers in hopes of spending some time with him. However, when he had received no answer and checked inside, he had found the room empty. Walking over to Remus’ desk he found a scribbled note addressed to him. Perplexed, he began to read:

Harry,
I’ve been called to an emergency meeting. I’ll be back late.
See you tomorrow.
Remus.


Sighing, Harry slumped into one of the more comfortable chairs of the room, and rested his head in his hands. He knew the full moon was the next night, and he already felt awful, he could only imagine what Remus must be going through.

The sound of the office door opening alerted Harry, and his immediate thought was that Remus must of forgotten something and had come back to collect it. However, he was surprised to see the bat-like presence of Severus Snape.

Snape scowled darkly as he noticed Harry alone in Remus’ office. He had gone to the wolf’s office hoping to drop off the wolfsbane potion as quickly as possible before his guest arrived in the evening.

‘Potter? I was told Lupin would be in a meeting all evening. Which begs the question why are you here alone?’ Snape asked suspiciously as he moved inside the room.

Harry suppressed the urge to roll his eyes as he answered Snape’s questions, all the while wondering the same about him.

Snape revealed the potion with a slight shake of the wrist to indicate why he was there. He was now glad that he had decided to cork the potion rather than deliver it in its usual goblet.

Harry nodded his head in understanding and moved to leave the room. However, Snape reached the door first and turned sharply on his heel, causing Harry to take a step back from him, not wanting to be stood too close to Snape.

With a raised brow, Snape began, ‘Mr Potter, I am brewing a potion that should relieve you of the effects that the cycle of the full moon seem to have instilled upon you. As such, I will need a few ingredients. One of which includes a measured amount of your blood and your gaurdian'sblood too, taken on the night of the full moon,’ Snape revealed.

Harry thought about that for a moment. He remembered the list of potion ingredients he had seen on the parchment on Snape’s desk during detention. He attempted to visualise what the other ingredients for the potion were, but for the life of him couldn’t remember.

‘Potter?’ Snape prompted impatiently.

Harry visibly shook himself from his thoughts. ‘Sorry Professor, was there something else?’ Harry asked politely.
Snape scowled. ‘The Headmaster feels that yourself and Professor Lupin should be notified of such a procedure before it being undertaken,’ Snape replied moodily, to which Harry had to suppress a grin. Snape needed his permission. ‘Well, Potter?’ Snape snapped.

Harry savoured the thought of Snape asking for his permission over something for a moment longer, before finally answering. ‘Yes Sir. Tomorrow evening?’ Harry asked.
Snape gave a short nod before sweeping out through Remus’ office door, his long, black robes billowing behind him.

Harry took a last glance at the empty room. Heaving a sigh, he left to go look for Ron and Hermione in the library.

***


Severus returned to his living quarters. 5:40 PM. Late. Why must she always be late! Severus demanded of his thoughts. Just then the door to his study creaked open. Trademark sneer in place, Severus closed the distance between himself and the door.

‘Are you completely incapable of arriving on time, Gabrielle?’ Severus asked in mock anger.
Gabey lowered her cloak hood as she looked up into the glittering ebony eyes of Severus Snape, and with a coy smile answered, ‘Hello to you too, Uncle.’

***


When Harry entered the library he was surprised at the lack of students. It being a weekend, he was certain that there would be at least a few students feverishly trying to finish their homework. With a small shrug of his shoulders Harry stepped further into the large room. Madam Pince was not behind her desk and so he assumed she must be out.

A stack of books fell to the floor with a crash that seemed to ricochet off of the empty room walls. Pulling his wand free from his cloak pocket, Harry crept slowly around one of the aisles that housed the books on transfiguration.

He could hear voices, and so tried to look between a row of books to see into the next aisle. There was no one there. Harry continued to move along until he reached the end of the transfiguration aisle. With his wand raised, he took a deep breath as he prepared to confront whoever had snuck into the library. Tiny beads of sweat began to form on his forehead as he heard a girls voice cry out. It was now or never, he decided.

With that thought in mind, Harry charged around the corner and yelled ‘Expelliarmus!’ expecting a wand to fly into his hand. Harry’s eyes bulged as he took in the scene before him.

Hermione was sat across the lap of a very pale-faced Ron, having noticed Harry stood there. Her bushy hair was unkempt, sticking out in all directions and all of her school assignments and books were littered across the floor.

‘Harry!’ Ron choked as he found his voice. He stood up so quickly that Hermione fell to the floor in a heap.

‘Ow! Ron, that hurt!’ she exclaimed as she picked herself up from the floor.
Ron remained standing before Harry, waiting for the explosion.

‘I’ll see you later, guys.’ Harry said distractedly, seemingly not interested in what he had just witnessed.

Without a second glance at his two best friends, he turned on his heel and headed toward the exit again, re-holstering his wand as he did so.

Thinking that Harry was angry with them, Ron and Hermione attempted to call him back.
‘Harry! Harry, come back! We can explain…’

But Harry was gone. Only the swing doors to the library could be heard, knocking together before they eventually stilled.

***


Snape led Gabey to his private quarters. She let out a low whistle as she surveyed the décor. ‘You surprise me.’ Gabey intoned causing Snape to turn to her in question. ‘I was expecting something more… well… black. To be perfectly honest with you.’

They were stood in a magically expanded sitting area that boasted a high ceiling. The walls were a deep crimson colour that complimented the mahogany furniture and wood floor. There was a large desk that was currently buried under numerous piles of official looking documents. A large bookcase filled the main wall, revealing large dusty tomes and possibly the largest selection of potions texts ever, that were all stacked neatly together, and upon closer inspection, sorted alphabetically.

‘You’d be surprised, Gabrielle,’ Severus muttered as he moved to a light a fire at the rather grand fireplace.

Gabey made herself at home as she sat with her feat tucked into the side of the furniture. Severus took up the large armchair opposite her and stared intently into the flickering flames of the smouldering fire.

Gabey flicked her wrist and twirled it in the air slightly without use of a wand. Magically, a cup of hot chocolate appeared in her hand. She smiled to herself at her accomplishment as Severus barely noticed her actions.

‘So, are we having dinner here? Or…’ Gabey began, in an attempt to break the awkward silence that had fell between them.
Severus interrupted her without relinquishing his gaze from the hearth. ‘Where is he?’ he began gravely.

The effect was immediate as Gabey placed her mug on a side table as she moved to stand. ‘What do you mean? Where’s who?’ Gabey tried.
‘You know exactly who I mean, Gabrielle…’
‘It’s Gabey! Don’t call me that! You know I don’t like it!’ Gabey exclaimed frustrated.

With a quirk to his upper lip, Severus continued, ‘Fine, Gabey,’ Severus uttered.
Gabey rolled her eyes but refrained from further comment allowing Severus to continue.

‘I’m surprised you didn’t seek me out at the start of term. I must admit, I think even I was surprised to see you be sorted into Gryffindor house,’ Severus stood before Gabey now, her long dark hair encircling the circumference of her face, hiding her from view. ‘It was then that I realised you had tricked the sorting hat into putting you into Gryffindor. Of all houses!’ Severus sneered. Gabey looked up at him harshly.

‘I did not trick the sorting hat into placing me in Gryffindor house, uncle!’ Gabey cried indignantly.
Severus cocked an eyebrow in disbelief. Gabey sighed as she began to pace the length of the room.
‘Fine, if you must know, then I will tell you what that stupid sorting hat told me! Then will you believe me?’ Gabey asked loudly. Severus gave the tiniest of nods to allow her to continue.

With a slight sigh she began to re-tell what she had been told that night.

***




Okay guys, I’m going to stop here, basically because everyone is yelling at me to post this chapter. I did want to add more, but if I did then who knows when it would be posted, lol. :D

Yes, I know it’s short but it’s better than waiting even longer right? Well, I hope so anyway… I haven’t slept in nearly 48 hours and so now I’m going to do some coursework, sigh

Hope you enjoyed this one, I know it’s been an extremely long time coming (which you can read all of the reasons why for in the past 40 or so reviews), so I won’t go into all of that again. :D Don’t forget to review! I look forward to reading them :) More coming ASAP. ~Sam.

PS) Thank you for all of your continued reviews and support etc even though there have been no updates for like 2 or 3 months! It really means a lot to me that you still reviewed, :D Thanks guys!!


Chapter 21: The Enigma Part2
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Chapter21: The Enigma Part2


Previously… ‘I did not trick the sorting hat into placing me in Gryffindor house, uncle!’ Gabey cried indignantly.
Severus cocked an eyebrow in disbelief. Gabey sighed as she began to pace the length of the room.
‘Fine, if you must know, then I will tell you what that stupid sorting hat told me! Then will you believe me?’ Gabey asked loudly. Severus gave the tiniest of nods to allow her to continue.

With a slight sigh she began to re-tell what she had been told that night…

***


Flashback: …Harry returned his attention to the sorting. Suddenly interested in which house Gabey would be placed in. He watched as she calmly made her way to the stool and placed the hat upon her head, which unlike the others, didn’t fall over her eyes, and she instead took to looking at the ceiling as a shooting star shot across it. After what seemed like an eternity, the hat finally shouted, ‘Gryffindor!’
Gabey promptly made her way over to the Gryffindor table and sat down next to Hermione who had made room next to her…End of flashback.


Gabey continued to pace the length of the room as she tightly wrung her hands in front of her. Snape kept visual the entire time, listening raptly to her story.
‘…I placed the hat on my head and decided to look at the ceiling instead of at the other students. A shooting star shot across it and at that moment the hat spoke to me,’ she paused to take in the expression of her uncle who looked to be scrutinizing her every move.

‘It said that this year things would be different… that things had changed some how. He didn’t go into much detail, just that I would be needed before the end… that the chosen one would need me in his last fight… and to do that, I would be better placed in Gryffindor rather than in Slytherin, even if I do possess many of the Slytherin qualities,’ Gabey fell silent as she waited for the snide remark that was trademark of her uncle.

Snape surveyed Gabey until she began to shift from one foot to the other under his piecing gaze. Finally he spoke. ‘You are certain of this? There is no way that you could be mistaken?’ he asked seriously.
Gabey was slightly taken aback by her uncle’s tone but nodded mutely.

Snape seemed to be thinking over all that had been said and in that time Gabey had re-heated her hot chocolate and snuggled into the comfy sofa cushions.

Snape stood up and tended to the smouldering real-fire that was currently burning. He gazed almost longingly into the flames before addressing his company once more.
‘What of my earlier question, then?’

Gabey looked up from the spot in front of her that she had been gazing at with a furrowed brow. ‘What question?’

Snape turned to look at her seriously once more. ‘Where is he?’
Gabey took another sip of her beverage before answering. ‘I don’t know.’ At Snape’s look of disbelief she continued. ‘Well, I haven’t seen nor heard from in over two months, but before that I was told he was spotted in Romania,’ she answered offhandedly.

Snape’s brow furrowed as he thought that through. He mused that Gabey didn’t seem to think this significant, whereas to him it concerned him deeply. He pinched the bridge oh his nose as he felt a headache begin to settle.

‘Why didn’t you tell me sooner?’ he asked bitingly. Gabey was perplexed at the question. ‘Huh?’ she uttered.
‘I suppose it did not seem important to you that your father, my brother, was roaming Romania, hmm?’ he asked in frustration.
Gabey shrugged. ‘As long as he isn’t anywhere near us then what does it matter? He can’t get to you because you’re here with me… we’re protected by the ‘walls of Hogwarts’… nothing can touch us here…. Right?’ Gabey asked.

Snape shook his head. ‘No you silly girl! ‘The walls of Hogwarts’ are not enough to protect both you and I… not to mention the rest of the school, if my theory as to what he is doing in Romania is correct!’ Snape stormed as his thoughts flooded with the grotesque image of Voldemort’s lipless mouth form a smirk as his brother, Sumner Snape, handed their enemy the power to vanquish them all. He shuddered at the thought.

‘What do you mean?’ Gabey asked, now scared at the idea of her father residing in Romania. ‘What could possibly be so powerful or important that could be found in Romania!’ she asked with a bite of sarcasm.

Snape let out a calming breath as he resisted the urge to curse his niece into the next century for her naivety. ‘Because,’ he began with a voice filled with forced calm, ‘if your father is searching for what I think he is…’ Snape’s piercing gaze bored into Gabey’s slightly frightened one before he continued. ‘Then we are doomed, Gabrielle. And nothing and nobody will be able to help us, not even ‘the walls of Hogwarts’ will be able to protect us then.’

***


Harry sat in the common room pondering over what he had walked in on earlier in the library. He was slightly annoyed that they had kept there relationship from him, but he wasn’t angry enough to admonish them for it, after all wasn’t he doing the same thing but with Ginny?
Ginny… Harry sighed happily, and with the thought of his fiery girlfriend in mind he meander up the stairs to the boys dormitory for some much needed sleep.

***


Hey guys, sorry this is so short, but guess what?? I totally forgot I was going on holiday today!! :p So, I would have time to edit and add more to this but I didn’t think it was fair to keep you all in suspense for so long ;) Hope you like the Snape/Gabey convo.. some readers may even be able to guess just what might be lurking in a place such as Romania that would put Snape on edge… think bats and nocturnal… okay that clue was too big! Lol. I’ll update again when I get back from my hol’s hopefully… that’s on Tuesday, I’m going to France for a joint celebration of my 18th b.day and my Nan’s 60th and my mum’s coming too… should be fun :) Anyway, don’t forget to review! ~Sam.

PS) You may want to look at the meaning of Snape’s brother’s name, SUMNER it might give a few little clues :)

EDIT: PPS) Could you also leave your email address in your reviews if you'd like to be contacted via email of 'Link' updates, as it would be a lot easier than using the search function and then the contact button to email you all individually, lol Thanks!!


Chapter 22: Enlightened
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(Especially for Rosie (minniemcmouse) whose been asking for more info on the link and more Harry/Remus time ; )

Chapter 22: Enlightened.



The next morning, Harry woke up late. It was Monday morning and the full moon would be that night. He felt groggy and lethargic; the effects of the cycle of the moon already taking effect. He dreaded how Remus must be feeling, if this was how he felt.

Much like yourself I suspect, Harry. Remus’ voice echoed in Harry’s mind.
Morning, Remus Harry yawned.
Morning, Harry. Why don’t you get some breakfast and then head over here to my office? Remus suggested. Apparently Snape’s come up with some kind of potion that could relieve you of this ailment. Mind you, I don’t fancy Snape attempting to pluck hairs whilst I’m in full-form later this evening! Remus shared with a hint of amusement at the thought.
Harry sniggered aloud. Okay, Remus. See you in a bit.
Okay.

Harry washed and dressed as quickly as possible, which was hard as his limbs felt like lead weights hanging from his small frame. He noticed too that Ron and the others in the dormitory hadn’t bothered to wait for him, but then reminded himself that they, unlike him, had lessons to get to as he had been excused from all lessons that were to fall upon the days of the full moon.
***


Harry entered the Great Hall and was quickly greeted by a flustered Hermione and tired Ron, apparently they were running late having stayed up late last night, causing Harry to smirk and bow his head from view at Hermione’s questioning glare.
He watched as Ron tried to stuff an extra slice of toast into his mouth whilst Hermione pulled him along by the crook of his arm. He was about to pour himself some orange juice when he felt someone kick his left shin under the table.

‘Ow!’ he exclaimed as he looked across the table to see who had kicked him. He found Ginny’s playful smile dazzling back at him, and all pain was suddenly forgotten. ‘What did you do that for?’ he asked with lacklustre accusation.

Ginny nodded her head toward where Ron and Hermione had previously been stood and then whispered across the table so quietly that Harry had to strain his ears to hear her.
‘Am I missing something or are those two up to something?’ she asked suspiciously.

Harry smirked and gave her a knowing look, causing Ginny to yell, ‘Really!?’ across the table at him and half of the Great Hall to turn and look in her direction.
‘Yes, really. But don’t say I told you to them, I only caught them yesterday in the library…’ Harry began quietly.

Ginny erupted into a fit of giggles, her face turning red in the process.
Harry couldn’t help but laugh along with her as the memory re-played itself in his mind, unaware that back in his living quarters, Remus was also trying to contain his laughter as Harry and his mind connected with the passage of thoughts.

‘Oh my Merlin! Ron and Hermione!!’ Ginny squealed, too loud. Soon enough the whole of Gryffindor table and beyond had begun whispering with the rumour and the whole school knew.
Harry sighed as he gave Ginny a pretend angry glare.
‘Oops!’ Ginny laughed, as Harry shook his head. What were Ron and Hermione going to say?

***


‘Remus?’ Harry called as he pushed past the door to Remus’s living quarters. With a quick glance around the luxurious room, he deciphered that Remus must be in the bathroom, and went to go sit in the living area; exhaustion grappling him.

‘Hello Harry,’ Remus smiled as he exited from a door Harry hadn’t known was there before. Harry surveyed Remus’s face and realised how very old and tired he looked even though he was in his late 30’s he looked like he could pass for a lot older.
Harry sighed. He knew that it must be the strain of being a werewolf that was causing the aging process to accelerate, and it saddened him to think that perhaps Remus wouldn’t live as long as a normal wizard should.

Throughout Harry’s thoughtful ramblings, Remus had moved to the seat across from him and was now staring at his hands, subconsciously mimicking what Harry himself done when feeling awkward. He was beginning to hate the link that connected himself to Harry and vice-versa. Not only that, but it meant that Remus was now also connected to Lord Voldemort, not something that he particularly liked, to say the least. For many nights now he had been having trouble sleeping. High-pitched cackles and grotesque visions had plagued his sleep. He only hoped that Harry wasn’t able to channel those thoughts as he had done when Harry had entered the room. I need to talk to him. We need to talk about this link, before it drives us both insane.

Harry looked up abruptly to face Remus as his thoughts mingled with his own.
‘Harry, we need to talk,’ Remus announced gravely. Harry nodded solemnly.

***

Remus and Harry spent most of the day talking about various things, but mostly about the link that bound them to one another, and Remus to Voldemort because of the link that Harry and Voldemort shared in Harry’s scar.

Remus explained, somewhat hesitantly, about the nightmares that Voldemort had been sending him through their link to one another and that was partly why he was so tired lately, as well as his condition.


‘I wish none of this ever happened,’ Harry cried.
Remus, who was now sat next to him on a plush sofa; pulled him into a one armed hug. ‘I know. I know,’ Remus whispered as he cradled Harry’s head against his chest.


‘I think we need to test this link, Harry,’ Remus whispered next to Harry’s ear.
Harry shifted so that he could better see his guardian’s face. ‘What do you mean?’ he asked, whilst straightening his glasses.
Remus began to stroke Harry’s rather long hair, moving a few stray bangs away from his eyes. ‘I mean, I think we should talk to Dumbledore and see about testing the limits of this link. Who knows, maybe we can use it to our advantage somehow?’ Remus offered optimistically.
Harry snuggled closer to Remus as his hand continued to stroke Harry’s hair soothingly. ‘I guess. But…’ Harry frowned.
‘But what?’ Remus asked softly.
Harry sighed. ‘What if it doesn’t work? What if something goes wrong? I d-don’t want t-t-to loose you Remus.’ Harry sniffled. I can’t loose you too.he thought desperately.
Remus placed two fingers under Harry’s chin, making him have to look at him. ‘Listen to me, Harry. You are not going to loose me, Harry. Understand? I’m not going to leave you. Not again,’ Remus stated fiercely. Harry nodded, a prickling feeling welling up behind his eyes.
Harry smiled softly up at Remus, as he was dragged into yet another hug. ‘I love you, Remus,’ Harry whispered as his eyes started to droop, exhaustion finally wearing him down.
Remus smiled in return as he placed a kiss on the top of his charge’s head. ‘Love you too, Harry.’

***


It wasn’t until a rather loud banging on Remus’ door could be heard that Remus awoke, still lazing on the sofa with the sleeping form of Harry, wrapped up next to him. Remus sighed. He didn’t have the heart to wake him, so pulled his wand out from his robe pocket and flicked it at the door. He reasoned that it must be Snape, or Dumbledore… or both, as they were the only people that he was expecting.

The door to his private chambers creaked open slowly before being pushed abruptly aside by the tall figure of Severus Snape, and behind him, Dumbledore whose eye’s twinkled more brightly than ever as he took in the scene before him, of Remus and Harry snuggled up together on the sofa.
Snape’s lip curled.
‘Sorry to break up the family reunion, Lupin, but you were suppose to be down in my dungeons a half hour ago!’ Snape reprimanded, loudly.

‘Now, now Severus,’ Dumbledore began as he stepped between his two staff members. ‘I’m sure it was an honest mistake, and as you can see, there’s no harm done. So let’s be getting on with it, shall we? Hmm?’ Dumbledore asked serenely.

Snape snarled as he moved toward the sofa. ‘Potter. Potter! Potter, wake up!’ Snape prodded Harry as he spoke loudly next to his ear.
Harry, startled by the rude awakening nearly fell off of the comfy seat, if it were not for Remus who still had an arm wrapped around him.
‘P’fessor? Harry asked groggily. Tired weariness biting at him, as the lunar cycle’s effects flooded inside him.
Remus glared at Snape for awakening Harry in such away, but remained silent as he helped Harry to sit up. His own weariness slowing his movements enough so that, Snape, grudgingly had to help too.

‘Potter, it’s a good job you won’t remember this in the morning,’ Snape growled, as he helped hoist a practically comatose Harry to a sitting position.
Snape rolled up Harry’s left sleeve to the crook in his elbow, preparing to take the necessary blood for the potion he would brew.
‘Albus, pass me the syringe, would you?’ Snape asked as he used his wand to take a quick stats report on Harry.

‘Certainly,’ Dumbledore replied as he handed Snape the syringe. Remus had wrapped his arm around the back of Harry’s shoulders to stop him from toppling forward.
Snape gently inserted the syringe and withdrew a small amount of blood. He waved his wand to quickly heal the area that the needle had been inserted before rolling his sleeve back down. ‘He’ll have to go to the Infirmary overnight, Albus. In the morning we can asses the…’ Snape stopped mid-sentence as his eyes glanced over the back of Harry’s left hand.
With a raised eyebrow, Snape turned to look at Albus questionably. ‘Have you seen this before, Albus?’ he asked with an unreadable expression.

Dumbledore lowered himself to a kneeling position next to Snape and peered at Harry’s hand as he held it in his own. ‘No. I have not seen this before, although I should like to know why Harry has, ‘I must not tell lies’, engraved into the back of his hand,’ Dumbledore said seriously. Snape continued to look at Harry’s hand with a distant look, as though he were remembering a long forgotten memory that now threatened to surface again.

‘Well, Remus, you should take your Wolfsbane potion before it’s too late. Severus, I’ll leave you to take Harry to the infirmary, I’ve a pressing engagement tonight, which I cannot miss. Good evening, to you both.’

‘Severus. You should go. Take Harry with you. I don’t want to risk anything… even with the potion… I...I…Well, you never know for sure, do you?’ Remus whispered tiredly.
Snape, lost in his thoughts nodded and moved to scoop Harry up. Had Remus not been so exhausted or busy taking his potion, he may have noticed that Snape decided not to use a hover charm, and carried the sleeping boy in his arms instead.

As Snape slowly lowered Harry to one of the hospital beds, he surveyed his face. Afer some musings and whilst unconciously removing his shoes and glasses for him, he decided that perhaps, it wasn't right to blame the boy for all of his father's sins against him, and that perhaps maybe, just maybe he had been wrong about Harry Potter?

Snape stopped mid-thought as he realised that he had just placed Potter, the son of his fallen enemy on a hospital bed, whom he had carried, in his arms and then cared for by taking off his shoes and glasses and placed beneath the covers!

With a moments pause he resumed placing Harry under the covers, deciding that no one would know that it had been him, and would just assume that Madam Pomfrey had done it.

With one last glance at the sleeping boy, he turned on his heel and exited the room. Leaving a thoroughly shocked and amused Madam Pomfrey in his wake, who had witnessed the proceedings from her office window.

***


Hey Guys. Hope you liked this one. I do, it’s got a lot more focus on what the story is really about. And that’s the Link between Harry and Remus. Also, this chapter could be considered a turning point in the story… with Snape’s character at least. You’ll be noticing a difference in him from now on; one that I’m hoping you’ll all going to like. But don’t worry; he’s still going to be Snape – snarky, self-reliant, cloaked in black, Snape, lol.

Don’t forget to review!! I love hearing from you guys, so tell me what you do/don’t like, what you want to see in future chapters etc, etc.

Also, if you haven’t already, but want to be on the mailing list for this fic, then please leave your email addy so I can tell you when I’ve updated! :D ~Sam

Okay, a few recommendations:
Fics: Lightning from the Clouds by Sketch17 (A brilliant fic that I’ve just discovered, written by the previously named ‘Clouds_Paw’ – a faithfuil reviewer of The Link - and I recommend that you all go read it, it has an original OC and a fast-paced plot line that you can’t help but want to read more and more of!)

Books: Waywalkers by Catherine Web (A teen fantasy book, that I’ve just finished reading. It was brilliant and I couldn’t put it down, so I recommend it to all. Plus, there’s a sequel that I plan to read sometime soon as well.)

PS) SUMNER means: One who summons and calls.


Chapter 23: Changing His Ways
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Extremely long chapter ahead! :D

Chapter 23: Changing His Ways


Snape was still in shock over what he had done back in the infirmary. He resolutely decided that he must be coming down with some new and extraordinary illness that made you want to care for your enemy; at least that’s what he would tell anyone who should consider asking. Even though he knew the truth deep down inside of himself, he wasn’t about to admit to caring for Harry Potter, to anyone.

As he passed the large entrance hall, his gaze lingered on the enchanted ceiling inside the Great Hall. The full moon dominated the central aspect of the illusion and the clear sky was softly scattered with sparkling stars. He would have to pluck hairs from Lupin in order to complete the potion for Potter, and to do that, he would have to enter a room with a fully-grown werewolf. No matter if he did still have his mind because of the Wolfsbane potion, it still didn’t sit well with Snape that in a moment or two’s time he would have to face the ominous beast.

His long black robes billowed around him as he strode along the second floor corridor, headed toward Lupin’s office. Snape marvelled at the thought of how it was always him who had to place his neck on the line for someone else; even within the Order, it was him who had to spy on the most feared living wizard of all time, and blatantly lie to his face. Hoping against hope that he not be discovered, for some cruel and sickening torment await him should he fail to please. He shuddered at the thought of the inevitable. It wasn’t a question of if, It was when. Or at least in Snape’s opinion it was. Spies never lived very long. Not even the exceptional ones, he reminded himself as he approached the spelled office door.

Not bothering to knock, Snape confidently pushed the large wood-frame door open enough for to just squeeze through. Lupin was curled up in front of a roaring fire, eyeing the potions master with a snarl imprinted on his muzzle. Snape shut the door soundly behind him without leaving the wolf’s now amber eyes.

‘I don’t like this anymore than you do Lupin,’ Snape admitted as he strode forward with purpose. ‘I suggest unless you want your precious Godson to have to suffer every time you are transformed that you allow me to get this over and done with as quickly as possible,’ Snape sneered.

The werewolf’s eyes never left Snape’s glittering ebony ones, but never the less, allowed Snape to stealthily pluck a handful of hairs from one of his hind legs.

As Snape stored the loose hairs into a small test tube, he surveyed Lupin in his wolf form. He had never been in the wolf’s presence before long enough to actually look without fearing for his life, and so took the opportunity to do so now. He was surprised that Lupin’s werewolf form was so small, he was certain it never used to be that small, or at least it hadn’t appeared so when he had come face-to-face with the beast in past times.
He frowned as he remembered reading in his Compendium of Dark Beasts, that the size of the werewolf in adulthood was suppose to reflect the strength of the man inside. That was why reputedly, wizard werewolves were much larger in size than unfortunate Muggle werewolves that had been turned, because of the magic that one harbours inside as a wizard.

Plugging the tube with the hairs in it before placing it inside his cloak pocket, Snape turned on his heel and walked toward the door and left.

***


Snape worked feverishly long into the small hours of the morning, sweltering over a bubbling cauldron full of potion. His greasy hair clung to the side of his pallid face as he added ingredient after ingredient, and time crept slowly on.

***


Hushed voices were what initially awoke Harry, he had been dreaming and longed to return to the dream now that he had realised where he was, the hospital wing. He had dreamt that he was riding on the back of Buckbeak. They were going to see Sirius, somehow he knew this, that they would find him, and as soon as they did everything would be fine. They would be a family again. But then the dream had changed, Remus had appeared, seemingly out of thin air and asked ‘What about me?’ to which Harry then found himself torn, couldn’t he have both his Godfathers?
No, had been the unanimous answer and Harry found himself in a game of tug-of-war in his decision over whom to choose. He longed to go back to that dream, so he could know the answer; he had awoken just as he was about to decide when he had been rudely awoken by the chattering of the room’s occupants, and now he would probably never know.
Sighing, Harry opened his eyes to find an overabundance of white stood next to his bed. Without his glasses, he could only assume that it was Professor Dumbledore.

‘Good Morning, Harry,’ Dumbledore smiled pleasantly as his eyes twinkled at his young student.
‘Morning P’fesor,’ Harry replied groggily. He wasn’t out of the woods yet.
Dumbledore surveyed Harry over his half moon glasses as he asked, ‘How do you feel, Harry?’
Harry’s mind seemed to be working slower than usual, his thoughts still fogged by the disturbing dream he had had and sleep clung to the tendrils of his mind, delaying his response as he considered that Dumbledore sounded concerned.
‘I’m fine,’ he lied lamely, not knowing why he hadn’t just said how he really felt.
Dumbledore wasn’t convinced. ‘Well, in any case, Professor Snape has brewed the potion he has been working on for quite some time now, and it is ready to be administered.
Harry’s eyes brightened. ‘You mean, I’ll be cured?’ he asked hopefully.
Dumbledore smiled at Harry’s enthusiasm, ‘Yes. That is to say, we will still have to keep an eye out for any signs that you have not been completely cured, but otherwise,’ here Dumbledore smiled warmly at Harry, ‘Yes, Harry.’
Harry couldn’t help but let out a wide grin at the thought. He turned his head to the right as a black blur assembled itself into the form of Professor Severus Snape.
Harry was handed his glasses by Madam Pomfrey as she came to check on him, but Harry kept his gaze on Snape the whole time, trying to lip-read the conversation that he was having with Dumbledore at the far end of the room.

‘Mr Potter, as soon as the potion has been administered and I have ascertained that you are in a fit state of health, you may leave and go to classes,’ the medi-witch ordered sternly.
Harry nodded as Snape and Dumbledore stepped forward again. Snape, Harry noticed, looked extremely tired and was holding a smoking goblet that reminded him of Remus’s Wolfsbane potion.

‘Drink this, Mr Potter,’ Snape ordered as he handed Harry the goblet. Harry looked inside and recoiled slightly as he peered into it and noticed that the potion was a bright green colour. He could feel Snape’s piercing gaze on him though and decided that if he closed his eyes and held his breath whilst taking it in a quick succession of large gulps, then it wouldn’t be as bad. However, Harry found himself pleasantly surprised to find that the potion tasted only of apple, and was actually quite tasty.

Handing back the empty goblet to Snape, who vanished it with his wand, Harry closed his eyes as a wave of dizziness over took him before passing almost immediately afterward.
‘Well, Mr Potter? How do you feel?’ Snape asked.
Harry took a moment longer before he reopened his eyes and replied that he felt fine, normal.
‘Well, let us not go so far as that, shall we?’ Snape smirked nastily.
‘Severus,’ Dumbledore warned quietly.
Snape immediately complied.

‘Now, Harry,’ Dumbledore began soberly, ‘I wonder if you would mind explaining this,’ Dumbledore asked as he pointed to Harry’s left hand where the words, ‘I must not tell lies’ was engraved into the back of his hand.
Harry tried to move his hand under the covers, but when Dumbledore stopped him before he could do so, he looked away ashamedly instead.
‘We know it was a blood-quill, Potter,’ Snape began seriously. ‘So, you might as well tell us who.’
Harry sighed as he ran his spare hand through his already tousled hair. ‘Why do you want to know?’ Harry asked quietly, his eyes averted. He didn’t want to look into their eyes.

Surprisingly, it was Snape who replied. ‘Of course we want to know, Potter. No one should be allowed to punish a child in such a way that it leaves irreparable damage, such as that!’ Snape exclaimed, pointing at Harry’s hand that was still held in the firm grip of the headmaster.
Harry thought it was ironic that such words should come from the school’s most feared potion’s professor, and found himself wondering what Ron would think if he were here. He fought a smirk at the thought of Ron staring bewildered at Snape as though he had been confunded.

‘Well?’ Snape asked impatiently. ‘Who did this to you?’
Harry took a deep breath. ‘Umbridge,’ was all he said in reply.
‘Harry, why didn’t you tell us? Why didn’t you come to me, or Professor McGonagall? Surely it hurt?’ Dumbledore questioned.
Harry attempted to control his anger as he felt white-hot rage bubble inside him. ‘How could I come to you when you wouldn’t even look at me?’ Harry replied through gritted teeth.
Dumbledore at least had the decency to look chastised. ‘Besides,’ Harry continued in a much more controlled voice, ‘It was between her and me. It wasn’t anyone else’s business.’ Harry answered, finally being allowed to pull his hand free from Dumbledore’s grip on it.

Harry’s short outburst had allowed a painful silence to hang in its wake, which began to make Harry feel uncomfortable, after a few minutes had passed of no one saying anything, Harry couldn’t take it anymore.
‘I’m sorry, Professor. I shouldn’t of said that, I know you were only trying to protect me and everyone else from Voldemort possessing me,’ Harry relented, much to the surprise of Snape. He found himself agreeing that he too would have found the headmaster’s ignorance of the situation between Potter and Umbridge most irritating should it have been himself in Potter’s place.

Dumbledore gave Harry a small smile. ‘Thank you for your forgiveness, Harry. However, you are correct. I should not have made myself so inaccessible to you that you felt that you couldn’t come to me, when you clearly needed to,’ Dumbledore replied sadly.

‘From what I have heard, Dolores Umbridge is still in St Mungo’s hospital, apparently that little stint yourself and Miss Granger pulled off in June with the centaurs, left her with the requirement of being hospitalised until further tests to ascertain her mental awareness can be carried out,’ Snape informed.
‘I – We, didn’t mean to-’ Harry began, in fear of Umbridge’s psychological ‘problems’ may be pinned on him, or worse, him and Hermione.
Snape’s dark eyes were glittering though, and his tone was softer than Harry could ever remember Snape using to speak to him with. ‘Which means Mr Potter, that she will undoubtedly be sectioned to Lockhart’s ward for a long time,’ Snape concluded.

Harry tried to take that information in, but before he could decide whether or not Snape was being malicious in some way, the doors to the wing opened and in strode Remus.

***


‘Hello, Harry. You look much better than you did just last night,’ Remus commented as he climbed into one of the hospital beds.
Harry sidled over to Remus’s bed, leaving Snape and Dumbledore to talk amongst themselves.

‘Yeah, I’m cured,’ Harry smiled, but elaborated for Remus’s benefit when he raised an eyebrow. ‘Snape finished he potion,’ Harry explained.
‘Ah, yes. I remember when he came in last night,’ Remus chuckled lightly, to which Harry raised an eyebrow but didn’t comment.

Dumbledore walked toward Harry and kindly reminded him that first period was almost over and that he should head toward his second class instead.
‘Okay. I have to go, Remus,’ Harry called as he began to leave the room, following Snape’s swift footsteps, ‘Bye!’
‘Bye, Harry,’ Remus called after him.

***


Struggling to catch his breath, Harry finally caught up with Snape, just before the staircase that led to the dungeons.
‘Yes, Potter?’ Snape asked distractedly.
Harry stalled for a moment so he could catch his breath from practically running to keep up with Snape. ‘I, um… well the things is, I…’ Harry began, suddenly nervous.
Snape rolled his eyes. ‘Spit it out, Potter, I haven’t got all day!’ Snape spat.
‘Thank you, sir,’ Harry replied timidly.
Snape was taken aback, obviously expecting something else. It took him almost a whole minute to realise that he was staring at the boy with his piercing gaze, that he had begun to shuffle from one foot to the other.
‘For what, Potter?’ Snape asked in a barely audible voice that was so uncharacteristic of Snape, Harry snapped his eyes up to look at him.
‘For the potion, sir. I just wanted to thank you. I mean, you didn’t have to make it for me, but you did anyway, and for that I thank you,’ Harry replied sincerely.
Snape was still staring at him with an unfathomable expression, so Harry decided that he would just leave.
As he was about to walk off, when Snape finally answered. ‘You’re welcome, Mr Potter. However, I did nothing that no other wizard would have done in my position, as potion’s master for this school,’ Snape stated.
Harry decided it best not to argue and so only nodded his head in understanding before turning away to head up to Transfiguration. Leaving Snape with yet another piece to the jigsaw that is the mystery of Harry Potter.

***


It was at lunch in the Great Hall when Ron and Hermione realised that their secret was out. Malfoy had exclaimed loud enough for all to hear that ‘The Weasel and Mudblood Granger were dating’, earning himself a weeks worth of detention with Professor McGonagall for insulting two members of her own house.
Ron and Hermione had sent glares Harry’s way, but rightfully, Ginny had piped up to explain that it was really her doing. Which somehow made Ron and Hermione even angrier with Harry for having told Ginny in the first place. ’I can’t win’, Harry sighed to himself.

‘What’s wrong with Ron?’ Harry asked Hermione as they moved toward Care of Magical Creatures class. Ron was walking around with his shoulders slumped forward and his face was paler than usual too, intensifying the ginger colour of his hair and the freckles on his nose.
‘He’s got his first training session with Firenze tonight. I think he’s been having more visions and not telling us. I think it’s getting worse for him,’ Hermione whispered concernedly.
‘Oh,’ was all Harry could say.

***


Hagrid, Harry decided, had got a lot better at teaching since he first began as a proper Hogwarts’ Professor, in Harry’s third year. As always, Hermione’s hand was the first in the air to answer any question that may be construed as thrown her way, and Hagrid awarded house points when praise was needed and encouraged them to take care of their pets as they would be doing a project soon that studied their pets to see if they possessed any unknown magical properties.
Before the end of the lesson, Harry decided that it was worth asking again where Hagrid had been over the summer. He had avoided the topic last time he had questioned him about it, and because he would have been late for Remus’s lesson, he hadn’t had time to argue, now however, he had all of lunchtime should he need it, to get an answer from Hagrid.

‘’Ello, Harry. Ron, Hermione,’ Hagrid greeted as he packed away some of the strange creatures he had been showing the class.
‘Hagrid, we were wondering, where were you during the summer?’ Harry asked without preamble, ‘I mean, I know you were on a mission for the order, but you did say you’d tell us later… and it’s been a while,’ Harry began cautiously.
Hagrid seemed to be trying to re-call the previous conversation, and when he did his eyes bulges as he realised that it was true. He had told them that he would explain later on, where he had been.

‘Oh Yea, I did didn’t I?’ Hagrid asked rhetorically. Harry nodded.
‘Well, obviously,’ Hagrid began, ‘I was on u’ mission for the Order, an’ I can’ tell yous three abou’ that, now can I?’ Hagrid smiled.
‘But Hagrid, where were you? You weren’t trying to get the Giants to join the war again, were you?’ Harry asked desperately.
‘No. No, no, I weren’t seeing those giants again, no,’ Hagrid replied.
Harry sighed with relief. ‘So what were you doing, Hagrid?’ Hermione asked suspiciously.
‘Well, if yuh mus’ know, I was lookin’ for someone,’ Hagrid explained.
‘Who?’ the trio asked simultaneously.
‘I can’ tell yous tha’!’ Hagrid exclaimed, ‘Tha’s top secret, tha’ is!’
‘Okay, Hagrid. We understand,’ Harry abandoned that line of questioning.
‘We’d better get to lunch,’ Harry said to Ron and Hermione, who nodded in reply. ‘See you later, Hagrid!’ Harry called as they wound their way up at the steep slope to the castle.

***


That afternoon, was Harry’s first lesson of Defence Against the Dark Arts that would be taught by Professor Moody, or better known as Mad-Eye by some, who would be playing substitute whenever Remus was unable to teach because of the Full Moon.
‘CONSTANT VIGILANCE!’ Moody yelled as a way of silencing the rumble of chatter that had begun, as he made his entrance into the classroom.
Moody’s electric blue eye, that could see through all materials, spun wildly around it’s eye socket as it scanned the room for anything suspicious, whilst his real eye came to rest on each and every student in turn, making one after the other squirm under Moody’s intense gaze. Harry decided that if Moody was hoping for a memorable entrance than he had succeeded, the combination of Moody’s gnarled face, wooden leg, ‘mad-eye’ and bowler hat as he stood before the gathered sixth year students, was a most intimidating appearance.

‘I could have been anyone walking into this classroom; anything from a Deatheater to an impostor!’ Moody growled at his silent audience. Most of the room seemed to appreciate the irony that was intended when Moody had been imprisoned in Harry’s fourth year and an impostor had taken his identity to teach at Hogwarts. ‘…And none of you would have been any the wiser, what with all that chatter! From now on, I want you to always be on your guard! Wands at the ready, and prepared for anything to come through that door!’ Moody continued in his usual low growl. Many of the Hufflepuff and some of the other students were now staring at the door expectantly, as though some fierce beast may walk through it any moment.

‘Merlin, he’s going to make us as paranoid as he is!’ Ron thought to himself.

***


That evening, Ron departed early from dinner to get to the Divination classroom for his training session with Firenze. Both Harry and Hermione had attempted to reassure him that everything would be okay, that Firenze would help, but nothing to seemed to help Ron, and so they had allowed him to go by himself as he insisted that they not come.
Now that Ron approached the ground floor classroom, he wished that he had asked his friends to come, at least then he wouldn’t be alone. With a deep, calming breath, Ron rapped soundly on the large double doors. Within moments, Firenze opened the doors. ‘Good evening, Ron Weasley,’ Firenze greeted politely, moving aside so Ron could squeeze into the room.

‘Um, when I spoke to Professor Dumbledore, he wasn’t very clear on what we’d actually be doing in these lessons,’ Ron began.
‘Ah yes. Well, I thought that first of all we should talk about what you are seeing in your visions. That will allow me to ascertain what the course of action shall be,’ Firenze stated.
‘Um, okay,’ Ron nodded uncertainly.

***


‘I hope Ron’s okay, it’s been awhile,’ Hermione mused as she and Harry sat in the library revising.
‘Me too,’ Harry sighed, ‘He doesn’t deserve to be going through this,’ Harry replied sullenly.
Hermione nodded as she returned her attention to the open book in front of her.
After a few more minutes, Harry had had enough. ‘I’m going to go check on Remus,’ he announced as he began packing his book bag, ‘See you later?’ he asked.
‘Yeah, see you later, Harry,’ Hermione replied.

***


‘Remus?’ Harry whispered next to Remus’s ear. He looked asleep and was in turmoil over whether he should wake him or not. He frowned, as his Godfather didn’t stir and was about to try and rouse him again but the hurried sound of Madam Pomfrey’s footsteps stopped him. ‘Mr Potter!’ the medi-witch chastised in a whisper. ‘Just what do you think you’re doing, waking Professor Lupin when you know what he’s had to go through!’ she continued sternly.
‘Sorry, I know, I was just…’ Harry began; surprised at his own actions, ‘Sorry, I’ll just go…’ he finished lamely, as he headed outside the ward, Madam Pomfrey on his tail.
‘You can visit Professor Lupin in the morning, Potter, until then, let him sleep!’ the medi-witch huffed.
‘Goodnight,’ Harry bid her.

Harry found himself meandering along the castle corridors without purpose. For once, he had finished all of his homework and found that he had nothing to do. The chimes of the clock tower told him that it was 9pm and still before curfew, just. A broom ride could be the answer to all his problems at the moment; he needed to feel the rush of air as he sped around the goalposts again. He hadn’t been on his broom in such a log time that he feared he would forget how to fly should he not take to the air soon.

Harry picked up his pace as he made his way up to Gryffindor tower; bypassing the questioning glances and stares as he raced up to the boy’s dormitory to grab his broom.
‘It’s almost curfew, you know!’ Ginny called as Harry raced past her and out the portrait hole again, ‘I know,’ he called back, unsure of whether she heard him or not, but decided that he would talk to her properly tomorrow instead if she was mad, for now, he just needed to clear his head and fly.

***


Harry soared through the air on his Firebolt. Caressing the grass lightly with his knees as he pulled out of a particularly steep dive and twirling in half-circles as he gathered height again afterwards. He practiced the sloth-grip-roll manoeuvre with practiced ease and flew above the stadium at a height of 80 feet to get a view across the lake, past the castle with the mountains outlining the horizon. Harry took a few gulps of air after his exhilarating ride around the pitch, before slowly descending to the ground as he assumed that it was probably past curfew by now.
Harry walked stealthily through the stone corridors of the dungeons. He had decided that although not the most attractive way back to the seventh floor, it did house quite a few secret passages that he knew of, courtesy of the Marauder’s Map, that would take him back to the seventh floor quicker than the main staircase would.

‘Well, well, and what do we have here?’ came a familiar drawl. Harry chastised himself at not remembering to bring his invisibility cloak, as he sharply turned to face Malfoy. With dread settling heavily in his stomach like a lead weight, Harry realised that Malfoy, was a prefect and so was allowed to be roaming the halls at night. Worse still, he had invited his friends along for the jaunt.
Crabbe, Goyle, Nott and Pansy Parkinson flanked Malfoy, and they all had their wands drawn, pointing at Harry’s chest.

Harry quickly had his wand in hand too, making sure to keep his eyes on the other’s wands as he marked Malfoy with his own. ‘What do you want Malfoy?’ Harry asked coldly.
‘Tut, Tut, Potter. You’re out after curfew, and since I am a prefect, and you’re not, I have the power to dock points!’ Malfoy mocked.
‘No you don’t, only teachers can dock points, Malfoy. All you can do is report me,’ Harry stated factually. Malfoy’s smug grin didn’t waver though making Harry realise that he probably wasn’t going to get away without duelling Malfoy, maybe all of them.

‘What do you want?’ Harry asked vehemently.
Malfoy began to circle Harry, like a creature watching its prey; making it hard for Harry to not panic as he realised he couldn’t watch all of them at the same time.
‘What I want, Potter, is to teach you a lesson!’ Malfoy sneered close to Harry’s left ear. His cold, angry voice sending a shiver down Harry’s spine.

‘Expelliarmus!’ Harry yelled at the group of Slytherins before spinning around to come face-to-face with Draco. He didn’t wait for the wands to reach his hand before sending a jelly legs curse at Malfoy, only he dodged it at the last minute as he dived to the floor, sweeping his leg out and knocking Harry to the ground with him. Next thing, Harry’s wand had been taken and his hands had been tied behind his back. His glasses had been knocked off when he had been thrown to the ground, so all he could see were the blurs of his attackers stood in front of him.

‘Get it over with Malfoy, a teacher will be along in a minute, then you’ll get what’s coming to you,’ Harry spat angrily as he realised the hopelessness in his situation.
Malfoy sneered as he punched Harry in the stomach, making him double over in pain. Someone was behind him and they kicked him in the back sending him toppling forward, and with no hands free to break his fall, he landed hard on his face. Blood dripped from a cut in his forehead into his eye, further blinding his view; as yet another punch was thrown at his abdomen.

‘WHAT IS GOING ON HERE!’ Snape yelled as his wand light illuminated the grotesque scene before him. Harry Potter, with his hands tied, face covered in blood, on the floor, with five of his own students surrounding him with their wands out.

‘EXPLAIN MR MALFOY, WHAT ON EARTH YOU THINK YOU WERE DOING!’ Snape demanded as he stepped forward to help Harry into a sitting position; who was struggling because of his bound hands. Snape noticed, which only infuriated him more, ’The boy didn’t stand a chance!’ he thought vehemently.

Snape circled his wand above his head twice before calling, ‘Fawkes!’ Within moments, the phoenix had appeared in a flash of flame, took one look at the scene before him and returned to Dumbledore’s office to retrieve the Headmaster.
‘You five,’ Snape began menacingly as he conjured some cloth to help clot the blood pouring from the cut on Harry’s face, ’Will be dealt with by the Headmaster, I am ashamed to have you be in MY house! How dare you do this!’ Snape yelled. The Slytherins seemed taken aback, as though they had been expecting Snape to congratulate them on a job well done, not turn them over to Dumbledore.
It was at that moment that Dumbledore appeared at the end of the corridor, moving as swift as a first year student as he approached the scene. ‘Severus, what happened?’ he asked angrily as he took in the damage that had been inflicted on Harry.

They, are what happened, Headmaster,’ Snape replied icily, not liking the accusation that fell behind the headmaster’s words; that as head of Slytherin house he should not have let this happen, as though it were his fault because the imbecilic goons that had attacked Potter were in his house that this were somehow his fault!

‘Take Harry to the hospital wing, Severus,’ Dumbledore instructed, ‘I will deal with these five,’ Dumbledore answered angrily. He looked each one in the eye until they squirmed under his strong gaze before marching them back to his office.

When Dumbledore and the others had gone, Severus let out a breath he hadn’t realised he was holding. He looked over Harry, noticing that the boy seemed to be slipping in and out of consciousness. ’Probably that cut over his eye,’ Snape mused. He felt around in the dark for his wand to unbind the boy’s hands from his back, before scooping him into his arms and grabbing his Firebolt too.

‘Hospital wing, Potter…’ Snape began.
‘N-No, p-p’ease, not Hosp’al Wing…’ Harry protested groggily.
Snape stopped mid-stride. ‘Well, you can’t very well go back to your dorm in this state, Potter. And I’m not carrying you up seven flights of stairs either!’ Snape protested as he continued to head toward the stairs.
‘N-No, p-p’ease…’ Harry tried again.
‘Fine Potter, have it your way,’ Snape snapped as he stopped to turn back to the dungeons and walk towards his office.

Harry slipped into the comforting darkness as Snape laid him down on his sofa in his living quarters, before slipping into his supplies cupboard to look for healing potions that he would normally only keep for himself after meetings with the Dark lord, but reasoned that he owed it to Potter as it was his fault that Potter had been attacked, as it was his students, which he should keep better control of.

With those thoughts in mind, Severus used the aid of healing potions and spells to restore Harry to almost full health, before giving him a sleeping potion to make sure he slept through the night. With any luck, all that the boy would sustain in the morning was the damage done to his pride and a few cuts and bruises that Madam Pomfrey would have to look at later.
Making sure that Harry was entirely comfortable; Snape continued with the marking that he had been working on before the night’s events had ensued.

***


Hey Guys! Well, that was a long one, huh!? Hope you liked it, I thought you deserved a nice long chappie after all the short ones I keep feeding you lot :D

Don’t forget to review!! I love reading them, and I’d especially like to know what you think of this chapter’s events, seeing as quite a lot happened in it : ) …What do you think of Snape?

BTW, If anyone is looking for a banner for their story(s) then contact me via review or email with what you want on it etc and I’ll make you one ; )

Next chapter:
Harry doesn’t know where he is when he wakes up,
Ron has an important (to the plot line) vision,
Gabey and Snape have another conversation about Sumner Snape,
And a few visitors stop by… Coming soon ~Sam

Chapter 24: The Company We Keep
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Ch24: The Company We Keep


The longest chapter yet! Please read the important Author’s Note at the end, as it concerns all readers of this story and anyone interested in how long the story will be and when it will finish, plus future stories from me etc, ~Sam.

Albus Dumbledore, Headmaster of Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, was deeply troubled. He sat behind his large desk, his long, wizened fingers arched in front of him as he surveyed five of his students, who stood nervously before him.

All of them were of Slytherin house, and therefore their head of house was professor Severus Snape. However, the crime that the students before him had committed was of such severity that it fell to him, the headmaster, to decide on their punishment.

Albus sighed as he looked upon the five Slytherins, each of whom came from notably renowned dark families, some of whom were known Deatheaters or supporters of the Dark Lord Voldemort. Any punishment that resulted in their expulsion from the school would only work against those who opposed the Dark Lord and his followers; they would undoubtedly all become young Deatheaters and that was not a desired fate that he wished upon them.
However, their acts against another student of his school did warrant a punishment, and a harsh one at that.
The sparkle of Albus’ eyes was the only exterior indication that an idea had set upon him, and it was with this new idea in mind that he addressed those present.

‘The act that you have committed tonight was no more than a display of cowardice and cruelty and I am severely disappointed in each of you,’ Albus announced seriously as he eyed each Slytherin in turn. One by one they squirmed like fish caught on the end of a hook, as his blue gaze pierced their own.
‘As Headmaster of this school, it is my duty to create a safe haven for all those inside this castle’s walls, and I will not accept such displays of vulgar animosity to reign within them,’ he spoke deeply, ‘You have overstepped the boundaries by the deeds that you have committed tonight against Mr Potter, and so, you shall each receive a months worth of detention, separately. Mr Malfoy, as you were the main conspirator, you will be given a choice,’ Dumbledore paused as the platinum blonde-haired boy looked up to meet the old, blue eyes of the Headmaster.

‘Sir?’ Malfoy prompted.

‘You have a choice, Mr Malfoy,’ Albus reiterated, ‘You can either forfeit your prefect duties, or your place on the Slytherin Quidditch team,’ Dumbledore surveyed the angry faced teen before continuing, ‘It is your choice. However, I expect you to report to either myself, or professor Snape with your decision, first thing tomorrow morning. You are dismissed.’

Draco looked outraged as professor Dumbledore dismissed them back to their dormitories, but dare not voice his frustrations in front of the Headmaster. Walking along the stone corridors that led to the entrance to the Slytherin common room, the five Slytherins each silently vowed to get their own back on Harry Potter, once and for all.

***


A quill scratching was what initially awoke Harry. Although, he was confused as to why Ron, Seamus, Dean or Neville would be writing something so early in the morning, as from the lack of light piercing between his bed hangings he could only assume that it was still too early to wake-up as the sun wasn’t up yet.
Maybe Neville’s just realised he has homework for tomorrow morning due in Harry thought to himself as sleep fogged his brain and he succumbed to the darkness once more.

***


‘Potter?’
Potter? Why’s Ron calling me Potter? Harry mused.
‘Potter?’
Wait, I know that voice, it’s…
‘Mr Potter!’
‘SNAPE!?’ Harry cried as he recognized the voice ordering him from sleep.

‘That’s professor Snape, to you Potter’ Snape sneered. He was stood before him, holding out a vial of potion. Harry sat up so fast that it made his head spin.
‘W-What… W-Where… am I?’ Harry asked anxiously. The room was very dark with only a single candle flickering on a nearby desk. Its wax had dripped onto its metal holder creating a pool of newly melted wax at its base, with tear-shaped droplets inching down its length. Harry turned back to face his most hated professor in apprehension.
‘Where have you t-taken me?’ Harry asked, he couldn’t keep the fear from his voice and hated himself for appearing so weak and vulnerable in front of Snape.

Severus surveyed Harry, a sneer plastered across his face. ‘Really Potter, you’d think a bit of gratitude wouldn’t go amiss after all that I’ve done for you,’ Snape drawled, still holding the vial out to Harry.
Harry’s brow furrowed in confusion as he attempted to keep his anger in check. He didn’t know where he was or what had happened and Snape was holding all the cards, he had to tread carefully if he wanted to find out what was going on, and getting angry wouldn’t help.

Deciding to change the subject he inquired about the vial in Snape’s hand, although his suspicions didn’t waver as Snape merely answered that it was dreamless sleep potion. At Harry’s reluctance to take the potion, Snape impatiently placed it on the desk behind him. It was only then that Harry noticed he was lying on a couch and had presumably been sleeping there for quite sometime, probably with Snape watching over him at that desk. The possibilities for the reason why he was in such a situation, reeled inside his mind, filling him with more fear than he’d care to admit.

Snape watched with part amusement, part irritation as Harry scooted further away from him as his eyes grew wide in fear. Choosing to ignore the display of un-Gryffindorish behaviour he decided to explain.

‘Potter, in-case your addled, little mind is incapable of remembering the events of just five hours ago, I’ll refresh your memory for you,’ Snape sighed as Harry remained at the far side of the sofa, although his small insult had exchanged Potter’s look of fear to one of hatred.

‘You, being the foolish Gryffindor that you are, decided to wander the corridors at night, after curfew,’ Snape began lazily. ‘Merlin knows why you would choose to haunt the dungeons of the castle, but you came across your friend Mr Malfoy and a few of his own friends…’
‘Oh,’ Harry interrupted with dawning recognition as the memory of last night flooded his senses.
‘Yes, Oh, indeed, Mr Potter,’ Snape replied sarcastically.
Harry frowned. ‘But then,’ Harry began looking up at his potion’s professor, ‘But then, why am I here, and where is here?’ Harry asked curiously.

Snape replied, ‘This, Mr Potter, is my personal living quarters, and you are here because you begged me not to take you to the hospital wing, and I could not very well leave you in the corridor with a concussion, could I not?’ Snape asked nastily.
Harry had flinched at the word, ‘begged’, before he asked, ‘But then why didn’t you take me back to Gryffindor Tower?’

Snape thought for a moment before responding. ‘As I told you, I could not leave you with a concussion, and I was not prepared to carry you up seven flights of stairs either!’ Snape responded, agitated at all of Harry’s questions. Why doesn’t the boy just drink the damned potion!

‘C-Carry me?’ Harry gulped, hoping against hope that he had heard wrong even though he knew he had.
‘Yes, Mr Potter, carry you!’ Snape huffed in annoyance, ‘What would you of liked me to of done? Dragged you?’ Snape snarled.
‘How about levitate me!’ Harry yelled, now angry at this new revelation. If what Snape had said was true, and Malfoy had given him a concussion, and if Malfoy were to find out that he, had been cradled like a baby by Snape… He would never hear the end of it.
Snape seemed flummoxed for a second at the admission that he should have just levitated him with the use of his wand. I did it again! I can’t believe, I, of all people carried Harry Potter, TWICE!! Snape screamed in his own mind. His pallid skin became tinged with faint pink; the only colour Harry had ever seen Snape turn.

‘Drink the potion, Potter. The Headmaster will allow you the morning off anyway, and I’ve had enough of your screaming for one night,’ Snape said venomously as he roughly handed the potion vial back to Harry.
Harry, embarrassed by the knowledge of Snape hearing him call out in his nightmares, drank the potion down in one long gulp. He had just enough time to hand the vial back before his eyelids fluttered shut.
Snape quickly moved away, not bothering to recover the boy with the blanket that had slipped to the floor, before blowing the candle on his desk out and entering his own room.

***


‘Ron, where’s Harry?’ Hermione asked as she scanned the cover of the Daily Prophet as she and Ron ate breakfast in the Great Hall.
Between mouthfuls of toast, Ron replied, ‘ Dunno, he wasn’t in the dorm this morning either, I just thought he’d come down to breakfast early,’ Ron shrugged.
Hermione frowned.

‘Morning Ron, Hermione,’ Gabey smiled as she sat in the seat next to Hermione.
‘Morning,’ they chorused.
‘Hey, where’s Harry?’ Gabey inquired as she noticed the empty seat next to Ron.
‘Dunno, we were just saying we haven’t seen him since last night,’ Ron replied as Hermione continued to scan the morning paper.
‘Well, I’m sure he’ll show up in Potions class,’ Gabey replied as she moved to stand.
‘Is that all you’re having?’ Ron asked, indicating the buttered slice of toast that she held in her hand.
‘Oh yeah, I’ve got somewhere to be before Potions. I’ll see you there,’ she smiled as she walked off towards the doors again.
Ron reached over Ginny who was sat on his other side to grab another slice of toast. As he did, he noticed that Hermione had stopped reading and was staring at an article on the second page of the newspaper.
‘What is it?’ he asked.
Hermione read the article aloud.

MINISTER FUDGE IN TALKS WITH MUGGLE PRIME MINISTER
Report By Special Correspondent, Rita Skeeter


Last night at a secure location within Muggle London, Minister of Magic, Cornelius Fudge met with the Muggle Prime Minister to talk about recent events involving the speculated return of He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named, which was originally rumoured to be true by professor Albus Dumbledore, Headmaster of Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry and Harry Potter, The Boy Who Lived.

Many believed both Dumbledore and Potter to be ‘troublemakers’, stirring up gossip in order to make others believe them and ultimately join their secret organization, founded by Dumbledore, whose main aim is to overthrow the Ministry and become Minister of Magic himself.


‘So I guess Skeeter got her job back then; and she’s already stirring up trouble,’ Ron sighed.
‘So it would appear, but listen to this,’ Hermione continued.

However, the Prime Minister’s fears were laid to rest last night that You-Know-Who had NOT returned, and that any Witch or Wizard to say otherwise was either extremely confunded or their brains had been addled by the likes of Harry Potter and Albus Dumbledore’s rumour mill.

Last night, Minister Fudge had this to say:

“The rumours that you have all doubtless heard are not true. It is preposterous lie that He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named has returned. He died many a year ago, and it is upsetting to learn that members, figureheads even; within our Wizarding community would say otherwise, in an attempt to create public hysteria. The words of Albus Dumbledore and his cohorts are not to be listened to or reasoned with, and it is with great regret that I say this, but perhaps it is time for Dumbledore to step down from his position of Headmaster at Hogwarts, as it is clear that he is incapable of running a school.”

The Muggle Prime Minister was unavailable for comment but it is said that he enjoyed a meal with Minister Fudge at a local restaurant, where the two had an enjoyable discussion about the differences and similarities of the politics of “Magic Folk” and Muggles, before returning to his home in London.


‘So Fudge is still denying the return of You-Know-Who?’ Ron asked surprised, ‘But I thought he was there in the Ministry atrium when He returned? He saw him come back! How can he deny he’s back when he saw him with his own two eyes!’ Ron exclaimed, enraged at Fudge’s denial.
‘Yes, I know. And now he wants Dumbledore removed from the school,’ Hermione answered sadly as she turned to look at the head table, noting Dumbledore’s absence.
Ron nodded, dropping his half-eaten toast on his plate, it having grown cold.
‘We can’t let that happen, Ron,’ Hermione stated determinedly. ‘We have to do something.’
‘What d’you mean? What can we do?’ Ron asked baffled at his girlfriend’s suggestion.
Hermione thought for a moment before replying, ‘I know just what to do,’ she replied smiling as she rolled the paper up and placed it inside her satchel.

***


‘Uncle?’ Gabey called as she entered the already open door to Snape’s living quarters. She was surprised to find it already open, and so assumed that he must be still inside. She stepped further into the room before softly closing the door behind her.

‘Uncle Sev?’ she called louder than before. She squinted through the darkness. There were no candles alight and the heavy drapes that were covering the charmed window were tightly drawn. Not receiving a reply, she moved closer to the drapes and felt along the edge of the sill until she found the velveteen rope, and pulled. Immediately, the room was flooded with early morning light, allowing her to see the door to her Uncle’s bedroom across the room. It was still shut, but she would be surprised if he were actually still sleeping as he hardly ever slept in late, and so she began to walk across the room toward the door.

***


Harry awoke when floods of light attacked him, forcing him to roll away from the offending light before squinting to see who had opened the drapes.

‘Gabey? What are you doing here?’ Harry asked sleepily.

Gabey stopped mid-stride as she turned toward the sofa at the side of the room. Her mouth hung open like a fish out of water for almost a whole minute before she realised what she was doing. ‘Harry? I think the question should be, why are you sleeping in here?’ she asked still in shock to find the Boy Who Lived sleeping in her surly Uncle Sev’s living room.

‘Huh?’ Harry asked dazedly. He looked around and realised that he was still in Snape’s rooms. ‘Oh… Um… It’s a long story,’ Harry replied sheepishly as Gabey raised an eyebrow in perfect imitation of her Uncle. It was at that moment that the door to the master bedroom opened and Severus Snape entered the room to find the two teenagers staring at each other.

‘Gryffindors,’ he muttered coldly under his breath as he walked over to the kitchen area of the large room to make himself a much needed coffee.

***


‘Today you shall brew a potion that alleviates the effects of acidic boils. The potion is called the Bouyellers Potion. You have two hours; the instructions are on the board. Begin,’ Snape instructed from the front of the class to his sixth year group, which unfortunately for him, consisted of both Potter and Malfoy, and was likely to not be the most pleasant class of the day. His eyes drifted to the offending two, Malfoy, who was sat in his usual seat at the front of the class, the perfect teachers pet when it came to sucking up to his most favourite “Deatheater” professor. Snape returned him with a nod of the head as he inspected his near-perfect potion. He continued to patrol until he reached the back-rows, where Potter and Granger sat, pretending as if they couldn’t see him stood there watching him. He felt a small smile grace his lips as Potter stirred the potion one too many times in the wrong direction and the contents within started to bubble.

Harry had refused the offer of the morning off by Snape, who had allowed him to return to Gryffindor tower to get grab his books and get changed before running to get inside the dungeon classroom before he yelled at him for being late. As ever, Snape was patrolling the many cauldrons in the room, Harry watched as he looked upon the Gryffindors with distaste for no apparent reason, the Slytherins with pride as they sniped at the other houses and how he outright ignored the Ravenclaws. Fortunately there were no Hufflepuffs in the class for him to torture, but in their stead, he already had the Gryffindor students.

Harry ladled the potion he was supposed to be working on with Hermione absentmindedly, but if he were to be fair, he wasn’t doing much; Hermione was doing all the hard work. It was only when Hermione squeaked, that he turned his full attention to the cauldron and noticed that it had started to bubble and froth at the edges. He gulped as he noticed Snape observing them out of the corner of his eye.

‘Tut, Tut, Mr Potter,’ Snape admonished, successfully gaining the full attention of the class as he approached the spluttering cauldron.
‘Please, Sir,’ Hermione began flustered as she attempted to add another ingredient to the potion, ‘I-I can fix it!’ Hermione furiously tried to gain control, but the potion was too far gone and before she could try anything else, Snape had vanished the contents with a swish of his wand, leaving the Slytherins of the classroom to laugh at Harry and Hermione’s empty cauldron.

Harry couldn’t even bring his self to look up at Hermione’s embarrassed face and so turned to look at Snape instead, who was still looming ominously next to him.
To everyone’s surprise, Snape said, ‘Start again.’
Hermione smiled so brightly that Harry couldn’t help but hide a small smile as well, ‘Thank you, Sir!’ Hermione exclaimed as she bustled back over to the ingredients tray at the side of the room.
‘Do try not to mess this one up, Mr Potter,’ Snape said as he began to move away.
Harry nodded even though Snape couldn’t see him, before walking over to Hermione to help her collect the ingredients together.

Gabey raised an eyebrow as Snape past her, for his unusual display of forgiveness. He scowled at her in return before returning to his desk, robes billowing.

***


‘Mate, where were you this morning?’ Ron asked at dinner.
‘Um, well…’ Harry began awkwardly as he rubbed a hand across the back of his neck.
‘What is it Harry?’ Hermione asked interestedly.
‘Well, last night I didn’t get back from flying before curfew. So I decided to take a short cut through the dungeons,‘ Harry began. He turned to Ron as he asked, ‘You know, that secret passageway behind the portrait of Wilfred the Wriggler?’ At Ron’s nod Harry continued, ’Well, Malfoy was there, with four others, and, well… I kind of got in a fight,’ Harry paused at Hermione’s gasp and Ron’s cheer.
‘Oh, I hope you kicked his little ferret a-‘
‘Ron!’ Hermione admonished giving Ron a furtive look.
‘Sorry ‘Mione,’ at Harry’s raised eyebrow, Ron sighed and whispered to Harry, ‘’Mione wants me to stop swearing, part of a deal. Says I can’t kiss her with a “mouth like that” says she’ll “wash it out with soap.”’

Harry raised both eyebrows as he turned back to Hermione who had blushed to a shade similar to the colour of Ron’s hair. ‘Well, I’m not kissing something that has something so foul come out of it as that!’ Hermione replied indignantly.
Harry sniggered as Ron rolled his eyes.
Hermione cleared her throat before asking Harry to continue, ‘Well, no Ron, I didn’t. In fact, it was the other way around… five against one Ron, it was hardly a fair fight,’ Harry tried to explain. ‘Anyway, Snape came and all I remember is waking up in his lounge this morning,’ Harry answered as he took in Ron and Hermione’s shocked expressions. ‘Oh and Gabey was there this morning too,’ Harry finished as he ate a mouthful of mashed potato.

‘What Snape had Gabey sleep in his room too?’ Ron replied in shock, as he swung round to eye his ex-potions professor who was sat at the head table. ‘The man’s a pervert!’ Ron exclaimed at the top of his voice causing many students’ heads to turn in his direction. Snape merely glowered at his behaviour before returning to a discussion he was having with professor McGonagall.

Both Harry and Hermione rolled their eyes at Ron before Hermione asked Harry why Gabey was there too.

‘I don’t know. I think she just came to speak to him or something, she definitely didn’t spend the night, but Snape didn’t seem too surprised to find her there?’ Harry pondered.
‘Hmm. Well, when we saw her this morning at Breakfast, she said she had something to do before Potions class, maybe she did just have to ask Snape something? I wonder why she went to his private rooms though? Surely students aren’t allowed? Not without a teacher?’ Hermione questioned.

‘Why don’t we just ask her?’ Ron asked.
‘Well, alright, I’ll ask her later…’Hermione began.
‘…And why you?’ Ron interrupted with a quirked eyebrow.
‘Because Ronald in case you haven’t noticed yet, I am a girl, and so is Gabey, and you are not. You are a boy,’ Hermione explained as if she were talking to a two year old, causing Harry to laugh into his pumpkin juice.
‘So?’ Ron argued.
‘Gabey might not feel comfortable talking to a boy as much as she might do with another girl,’ Hermione concluded in an annoyed voice.
‘Oh,’ Ron said stupidly. ‘Well, okay then, but you have to promise to tell me and Harry everything that you find out!’ Ron called as Hermione was already walking towards the entrance hall. She nodded her bushy head in confirmation before leaving the Great Hall.
‘Girls,’ Ron sighed to Harry.

***


Hermione entered the sixth year girl’s dormitory and found Gabey laid back on her bed reading a book.

‘Hi Hermione,’ Gabey smiled as she noticed another’s presence in the room.
‘Hi Gabey,’ Hermione began, ‘Do you think we can talk for a bit?’ she asked uncertainly as she sat on Lavenders bed, which was the one next to Gabey’s.

‘Sure,’ Gabey replied as she finished reading the page that she was and replaced the book mark before snapping the cover shut and sitting up to face her bushy-haired friend. ‘What do you want to talk about?’

‘Well, Harry told Ron and me about what happened to him last night and…’ she began.
‘Wait, what happened?’ Gabey asked concernedly.
‘Malfoy,’ was all Hermione replied before she continued with what she had been saying. ‘Anyway, he also said that when he woke up in Snape’s lounge, you were there too…’ Hermione drifted off, hoping Gabey would fill in the blanks for her without extra prodding.

‘Oh right, yeah that was funny. I was just visiting Sev to talk about something and I think I woke Harry up when I opened the drapes,’ she laughed.
‘Sev?’ Hermione questioned Gabey’s use of informality.
‘Yeah, Uncle Sev,’ Gabey answered as if it were the most natural thing in the world.
‘Professor Snape’s your uncle?’ Hermione asked horror-struck.
‘Um, yeah… I guess I forgot to tell you, huh?’ Gabey asked. Hermione nodded slowly, still trying to take in the information of Snape having a niece, and that person being Gabey.
Gabey laughed. ‘You’d think I just told you I was going to die the way you’re staring at me!’
‘Sorry, I just can’t get over the fact that you’re Snape’s niece!’ Hermione explained.
‘Yeah, I guess it is a bit of a shock. Anyway, I’m gonna head down to dinner, you coming?’ Gabey asked as she headed toward the door.
‘Um, no, I’ve already eaten, thanks,’ Hermione said distractedly.
‘Okay, see you later, Hermione,’
‘Bye,’ Hermione replied still in shock from the information that she had learnt.

***


As soon as Gabey made it out the portrait hole she checked to see if anyone was watching first before morphing into her animagus form of a black cat. She pounced down the corridors until she finally made it to the dungeons. Knowing that she couldn’t risk anyone see her enter, she stood next to the tapestry that led to the Slytherin common room. She didn’t have to wait long before the person she was suppose to meet

‘Well, aren’t you a pretty little pussy,’ drawled a cold voice, ‘Why don’t we see if there’s any catnip hanging around inside my dorm, huh?’ The 16-year-old Slytherin picked Gabey up in her animagus form as he said the password, and entered the Slytherin common room, taking the sleek black feline into the depths of the Slytherin domain.

***


As the weeks past and the weather turned slowly bitter, the first Quidditch match of the season took place. Hufflepuff Vs Ravenclaw. It was an easy match as far as the Ravenclaws were concerned, who won the match 280 to 50 points. Harry had also learnt that he had only been made Quidditch captain because Katie Johnson had grudgingly turned the position down on account of fearing her grades would slip even further than they had the previous year because of her dedication to the Quidditch team. However, Harry had suggested that perhaps it would be better if both he and Katie came up with training sessions and such, as they both agreed that it would be unfair to both of them if Harry had to think up game strategies by himself, having not much experience as a captain. Ron also offered to help as he spent most of his spare time thinking of and playing Quidditch at home.

The team needed to find two new beaters and two new chasers. Ron had already said that Ginny should get a place on the team as a chaser and later remembered that Gabey had said she would be interested in a position as a beater.
After having argued for almost an hour about who should be on the team and who shouldn’t, it was Harry who decided that they should advertise for extra players in the Gryffindor common room, as the only had three weeks before their first match, and as it was against Slytherin, no one on the team wanted to loose.

‘Okay, so we’ll advertise on the notice board, and then we’ll hold try outs on Wednesday, agreed?’ Katie opined. Both Ron and Harry nodded, and Harry appreciated her taking charge of the situation as his mind kept wondering to his next Occlumency lesson with Snape which would be at 8 o’ clock that evening.

It seemed that lately he wasn’t improving at all with his Occlumency and both Snape and he were getting annoyed at his lack of progress in his attempt to block Snape’s attacks on his mind. Of course, Snape just thought that Harry wasn’t practicing or trying hard enough, the truth was that Harry was trying so hard that he even had Hermione and Remus helping him whenever they could, and yet he still couldn’t successfully throw off the Legillimens when it was spelled at him.

‘Hey mate, something wrong?’ Ron asked as they tramped across the lawn back towards the castle. Katie having offered to return the Quidditch chest of balls on her way back after practice.

‘Occlumency,’ Harry sighed tiredly, as he rubbed his eyes underneath his glasses.
‘Oh right,’ Ron replied, not really knowing what to say. ‘How’s it going?’
Harry huffed as he kicked at a stone in his path. ‘Terrible,’ he answered.
‘It can’t be that bad, can it?’ Ron asked, but kicked the same stone Harry had when he approached it as a mini game of pass between the two friends.
Kicking the stone once more, Harry replied, ‘Oh yes, it can. Snape’s not as bad as he used to be, but he still doesn’t believe me when I say I practice, he just thinks I don’t want to try,’ Harry revealed. Ron nodded sympathetically, kicking the stone further ahead again.
‘I mean, you’d think I didn’t want to protect myself from Voldemort the way he carries on sometimes! Doesn’t he understand, that I just can’t do it!’ Harry exclaimed, finally managing to release some of his pent up anger, which was reiterated when he forcefully kicked the stone away from him clear across the lawn.

Ron sighed. ‘I know, mate. My training with Firenze isn’t too fun either,’ Ron commented as he stopped to turn and face Harry.
Harry suddenly felt guilty. Ron had been having classes with Firenze for almost as long as he’d been having Occlumency lessons with Snape, and yet he had failed to ask him how they had gone, and if anything had happened, or if he’d progressed lately, to See anything.
‘I’m sorry, Ron. How are you? Are you still getting visions? Are they bad?’ Harry asked tentatively. Ron combed his hair with fingers. ‘Some. They’re not all as bad as each other but I do get some bad ones. Like my last one, a couple of weeks ago, I saw all this blood and I could smell it too. It felt like I could even taste it! It was horrible. I don’t ever want another one like that, ever again, it was unbearable,’ Ron shuddered.

‘I’m sorry I…’ Harry began.
‘Will you stop apologising already!’ Ron exclaimed as he clapped Harry on the back. ‘I understand, you’ve got plenty going on in your own life without the burden of my own problems too, It’s alright, I understand,’ Ron finished as he began walking again.
Harry smiled before he jogged to catch up with Ron’s long stride, his Firebolt over one shoulder the other swinging at his side as he walked side-by-side with his best mate, back inside the castle.
***


Soon it would be the Halloween feast, and all of the students were buzzing with excitement as the days drew closer and closer.
The Great Hall was decorated with floating pumpkins and all the ghosts were invited, including Peeves who was under the close watch of the Slytherin ghost, The Bloody Baron, much to Peeves chagrin.
As Harry, Ron and Hermione took their seats at the Gryffindor table they were greeted by a wave from Hagrid to which they replied, and a Hello from Remus, who telepathically promised Harry that he would speak to him properly, after the feast as he made his way to the head table.

‘Welcome all, to the Halloween Feast!’ Dumbledore announced as he rose from his large chair. The teachers gave polite applause whilst most of the students cheered uproariously at the prospect of a treat-filled feast.
Dumbledore smiled down at all of the eager faces before him and was just about to tell them to “dig in”, when the large hall doors were pushed open and a pair of identical voices interrupted him.

‘Cor, does it feel strange to be here again or…’
‘…Does it feel strange…’
‘I wonder where ickle Ronniekins is?’
‘Probably stuffing his face…’
‘…Full of cake…’

There were scattered giggles as the mystery voices floated through to the hall. Where the occupants were yet to see the owners of those voices.

Dumbledore smiled as Ron’s ears reddened and Harry, Ginny and Hermione fought to keep from laughing. ‘Students, teachers, may we welcome back two of our previous students, who left us last year to make their own way in the world, along the path of jokes and pranks. As I’m sure many of you know by now, Mr’s Fred and George Weasley’s…’ Dumbledore announced as the twins began walking down the aisle between the Gryffindor and Ravenclaw table, ‘… store, “Weasley’s Wizarding Wheezes” was destroyed in a Deatheater attack, and have since been working to repair their loss. And so, it is with great pleasure that I welcome them here tonight, as a customer myself, to allow you to try free samples of some of their new confections and other products that you will find scattered in bowls along the house tables,’ Dumbledore announced as Fred and George were offered a seat each at the head table, which they accepted as the students clapped and cheered excitedly at the prospect of having such a treat.

‘Dig in!’ Dumbledore exclaimed over the rising chatter.

***


‘Merlin, I’ll be surprised if they’ll fit through the castle doors by the end of the night,’ Ron began. ‘Their heads are going to be so big from that speech Dumbledore made about them,‘ Ron sighed.

Harry laughed. ‘Yeah, but it was a brilliant idea. All of the students liked it, especially when Snape ate the colour changing candy and kept turning pink and blue!’ Harry laughed, Ron and Ginny joining in with him.
‘I have to agree, it was a good way for them to get their business running again after what Bellatrix and Malfoy did to the store,’ Hermione opined as she took a bite out of a Fizzing Whizzbe back in the Gryffindor common room.
Ron moved so that he was sat next to Hermione on the sofa in front of the fire. He wrapped an arm around her shoulders and she hesitated before snuggling closer into him, causing Harry and Ginny to smile as they caught each other’s eye.

‘So what did Remus talk to you about afterwards Harry?’ Hermione asked in an attempt to take the focus of everyone’s attention away from herself and Ron.
‘Oh, he just wanted to make sure I was alright seeing as we haven’t had much of a proper chance to talk lately,’ Harry began cagily. Hermione nodded, obviously looking for more information as she held Harry’s gaze.
‘He also asked me if I wanted to meet up with him at the Hogsmeade weekend coming up ion November, and if you three wanted to come too?’ Harry asked.

‘Sure mate, we’ll come,’ Ron replied before he turned his attention back to Hermione. ‘It could be fun, you know a weekend away from the castle… away from prying eyes…’ he whispered suggestively, making her blush as she noticed that Harry and Ginny were sniggering at them, having heard every word.
‘Ronald Weasley! I will do no such thing!’ she spoke indignantly. Ron just laughed.
‘Do what, ‘Mione? I didn’t suggest that we do anything, you did that,’ he sniggered knowing that he was making her flustered.
‘Yes you did!’ she exclaimed.
‘Uh-uh,’ Ron replied smiling. ‘You’ve a very dirty mind, Miss Granger! He exclaimed making everyone laugh.
Ginny was laughing so hard she had tears coming to her blue eyes as she rolled onto her side, knocking into Harry, who held her as he tried to control his own laughter at the scene.

Hermione was still sat cuddled up to her boyfriend, Ron when Fred and George made a surprise visit to the Common Room.
‘Ah, look at the ickle love birds, George!’ Fred exclaimed.
‘Aww, ain’t they sweet!’ George cooed.
Ron and Hermione shifted nervously under the twins’ gaze but didn’t change position. ‘Fred, George, what are you doing in here?’ Ginny asked from her spot on the floor in front of the fire, still in Harry’s arms.

The twin’s stammered over their words before they actually managed to gasp in shock at the realisation that Harry Potter was obviously their youngest, and only, sister’s new boyfriend.
‘Oh wait ‘till Mum hears about this!’ Fred said, although he sounded slightly annoyed, causing Ron and Ginny to look at him questioningly. Fred rolled his eyes as Fred and George attempted to act out a scene where George told his mother, played by Fred that Ginny was dating Harry Potter. It ended with everyone who had seen the hysterical act rolling around in fits of laughter and the twins’ identical grins plastered across their beaming faces.

‘Welcome to the family, mate,’ Fred offered his hand to Harry who accepted it with trepidation before having to shake George’s hand too, before they moved over to do the same to Hermione.
‘Let’s not get ahead of ourselves, shall we?’ Hermione asked as she gratefully pulled back her hand. ‘I should think that marriage is a long way of, just yet,’ she replied sarcastically.
Causing Ron to grin and hug her tight, making her have to bang her fists against his chest to make him let her go.

‘Anyway, we’ve gotta go. Order business and all…’ George began, only to be interrupted by Ron.
‘Anything you can tell us? I mean, you must know what’s going on, being members of the Order and all. What’s happening?’ Ron asked eagerly.
Fred and George shared a look.
‘Oh what? Now that your big Order members, you can’t tell us anything? What a load of horse sh-,’ Ron fumed before he was interrupted by Hermione hitting his arm at his use of the English language.
‘Ronald!’ Hermione said in a warning tone.
George sighed. ‘Well, actually, yeah that is the reason. We’ve been sworn to secrecy of what we do know, so we can’t tell you guys anything,’ Ron looked outraged and Harry and Ginny weren’t far behind him. ‘I’m sorry, Ron I wish we could,’ George said earnestly.
‘Bollix!’ Ron yelled vehemently.
‘Ron!’ Hermione yelled back at him.
Fred sighed. ‘If it’s any consolation to you, we don’t know that much anyway, things have been pretty quiet lately and no one’s saying much. So you’re not really missing out at all really,’ Fred attempted to calm Ron.
Ron just sniffed and turned away from them both. It wasn’t long before they heard the portrait hole close again and then there was silence.

***


It was Wednesday morning and Harry, Ron and Katie had inspected the list of people who were interested in the tryouts for the Gryffindor Quidditch team, and were surprised to find so many. Harry was glad to see that both Gabey and Ginny had added their names to the list, as was Ron and Katie.
‘Okay, so tryouts are tonight at seven. That’s okay with you two isn’t it?’ Katie asked. Both Harry and Ron nodded although he didn’t like the idea of being late to dinner.
‘Right, so if you turn up half an hour early, Harry and get the chest and the field set up, I’ll book the field with McGonagall for the rest of the week so we can work with our new players, okay?’

Harry mused at the thought that Katie was taking charge even though it was he who was Quidditch Captain, but she seemed to be calling all the shots. Not that he really minded but he just couldn’t understand why she had turned down the badge in the first place because of schoolwork, as she was practically Acting-Quidditch Captain anyway. Maybe I should offer her the badge? Harry thought to himself.
‘Harry?’ Katie asked concernedly as she had been trying to get Harry’s attention for a full minute without luck.
‘Huh?’ Harry asked distractedly, ‘Oh, yeah, yeah that’s fine see you at seven Katie,’ Harry smiled to her as she walked off shaking her head at him.
‘What’s up mate?’ Ron asked as he noticed that Harry was acting strange.
Harry looked Ron in the eye. ‘I’ve just realised something. I can’t hear Remus’ thoughts!’ Harry exclaimed worriedly. ‘What do you think that means?’
‘Um, that he’s not thinking of anything at this precise moment?’ Ron said stupidly.
Harry rolled his eyes impatiently at his friend. ‘No, I haven’t heard any of his thoughts… in ages!’
‘Maybe the Link’s gone, or something?’ Ron shrugged.
‘No. No I don’t think so, he spoke to me with the Link on Halloween, said he wanted to talk to me, and the other day in class he said “Hi”,’ Harry remembered.
‘He said “Hi”?’ Ron asked strangely, ‘Why would he say Hi using the Link, why not just say it?’ Ron laughed. Harry gave him a look that silenced him. ‘Right, not important, sorry,’ Ron said sheepishly.
‘I’ve gotta go see him, Ron. See what’s going on. I’ll catch you later; tell ‘Mione for me?’ he called as he raced toward the portrait hole.
‘Sure, see you later,’ Ron called after his retreating back.

***


‘Remus?’ Harry called slightly out of breath as he reached Remus’ private chambers. ‘Remus?’ he called again.
‘Harry?’ Remus replied as he came from another door into the main area where he was stood. Just how many doors are there in here? Harry thought to himself, not expecting an answer.
Remus chuckled to himself as he walked towards Harry and answered his un-voiced question aloud. ‘Seven.’
Harry looked at him strangely for a second before he realised what he meant. ‘Oh, so you heard me think that?’ Harry asked.
Remus nodded in reply. ‘Of course,’
‘Oh,’ Harry replied, trying to think of why he couldn’t hear Remus’ thoughts if Remus could hear his own.

Remus frowned at Harry’s sombre expression and led him to the sofa to sit down. ‘What’s wrong Harry? Your thoughts are racing a mile a minute, not even a Firebolt could keep up with them!’ he laughed trying to make light of the situation that he realised wasn’t going to be.

‘I can’t hear you anymore,’ Harry sighed. Remus looked puzzled. ‘I mean, your thoughts. I can’t hear your thoughts anymore; I don’t know what’s wrong. Maybe something’s happened with the Link, I don’t know. I thought you were, I thought…’ Harry attempted to continue but couldn’t.

Remus pulled Harry into a one armed hug. ‘You thought something had happened to me, and that’s why you couldn’t hear my thoughts anymore because I was too far away, or unconscious, or dead?’ he asked earnestly.
Harry nodded as he suddenly found his hands incredibly interesting to look at.
‘It’s okay, Harry. I’m not going anywhere, and I’m certainly not dead.’ Remus sighed as he tried to console his charge, to be honest he didn’t know why Harry couldn’t hear his thoughts anymore, and it was more than slightly unnerving, seeing as he could quite clearly still hear Harry’s.

Standing up, Remus sighed as he said ‘I think it’s time for a chat with Snape. Maybe it has something to do with the potion that he made you?’ Remus offered.
Harry nodded reluctantly, not really wanting to visit Snape at all, but reasoned that it might not be so bad if he had Remus with him.

With that thought in mind he followed Remus down into the depths of the castle leading to the dungeons.

***


Snape was beginning to think that it was his unlucky day for visitors, firstly was the Headmaster wanting him to come to his office for tea and cakes which had undoubtedly meant he was to attempt some suicide mission for the Order involving him spying on the Dark Lord. You could always tell how serious the talk would be by how much sugar Albus laid out in front of you, tea and cakes was the worst, and so his assumptions had been correct. A new and dangerous spying mission at Christmas, to be carried out while most of the students were on holiday and to return before the start of term as not to rouse suspicion, fantastic he thought to himself.
Then, there had been the letter by Owl, from Lucius. It was not entirely unexpected, as he often did receive a letter of invitation to Malfoy Manor at Christmas time, as were few others within the Deatheater ranks, Crabbe and Goyle Senior indefinitely.
Now, the wolf and his boy haunted his home, asking inane questions about their Link to one another. The mere thought of the two linked to each other in any way, making him want to give up his lunch.

‘Severus, perhaps the potion that you created for Harry has something to do with this?’ Remus suggested as Snape looked down his nose at the two intruders.
‘Perhaps,’ he relented. ‘But perhaps also, Potter is coming down with some illness and that has effected it also? Or, perhaps it is because you are a werewolf, Lupin and the thoughts of a wolf do not transmit as well to a human?’ Snape offered snidely.
Remus considered each suggestion seriously, even deciding to overlook the maliciousness behind the words, but in the end it was no use, unless Harry was ill, which he didn’t look ill, or Snape botched the potion, which was much more likely, then there was nothing that they could do. However, just as things were starting to look unfathomable, Snape did the unexpected and was almost nice.

‘Would you like me to brew the potion again, with some slight adjustments, Potter?’ Snape asked Harry who had so far remained silent throughout the conversation.
‘Well, if it’s not too much trouble,’ Harry began nervously. Why did Snape always make him feel so nervous lately? What’s wrong with me?
Remus raised an eyebrow at Harry’s thoughts but didn’t comment, they were still waiting for Snape’s response.
‘Of course it is of no trouble; I am a potion’s master am I not? This is what I do, Mr Potter. It is not a favour, I am doing you, I am doing my job,’ Snape stated defensively.
Harry only nodded, he didn’t know why, but he just didn’t feel like arguing with the potion’s professor before him.
Remus, deciding to speak up for Harry in his shyness, said, ‘Thank you Severus, it is most appreciated,’ Remus placed a guiding hand on Harry’s back as he made to leave the dungeon.
Snape nodded as they turned and left.
Maybe now he could loose himself in a much less frivolous task of saving Harry Potter as he brewed the potion.

***


That evening at seven, Harry and Ron met Katie who led the hopefuls onto the pitch. Those that didn’t already own their brooms used Comet 260’s, old school brooms, that weren’t very fast and hard to do tricky manoeuvres on such as the Sloth-Grip-Roll.
Harry hung in mid-air on his Firebolt with a stopwatch around his neck and a clipboard in hand as he watched the chasers attempt to take the quaffle from Katie’s tight grip and score against Ron who was playing his own position as Goalkeeper.
Ginny, at first struggled to grab the quaffle from Katie, but then went on to make an easy score against her brother, Ron. Having played against him so much over the past summer back at the Burrow had it’s advantages if your brother was on the school team, was what Ginny told Harry as she flew over to him to watch the next Chaser take her go.

After the Chasers had all tried out, it was time for the Beaters to take their go. Ron and Katie watched as each Beater attempted to hit a Bludger at Harry who also chasing the golden Snitch. Gabey came close, as did a boy in fifth year called Jack Nectar. He was of stocky build, tall for his age, wore wire-rimmed glasses, and had short, spiky fair coloured hair.

When the tryouts were finally over and Harry was afraid he might be frozen to his broom; it was so cold, the group lowered to the ground and huddled together in the middle of the pitch.

Again, it was Katie who spoke to the potential teammates. ‘Okay, that’s the end of the tryouts everyone, as you know, we need two chasers and two beaters, we may also post reserves should we need them, but it is unlikely. You’ll be able to see who made it on the team and who didn’t, on the notice board tomorrow morning in the common room. Thanks to everyone for coming to tryout, we’ve seen some good skill from each of you, and will certainly consider each of you seriously,’ Katie stated.
‘You’re all free to go,’ Ron called as he began walking over to the chest with Harry to gather up the balls again and take back inside. Katie followed the others up to the castle as Harry and Ron headed toward the side of the greenhouses where the Quidditch equipment was stored.

‘Who d’you think then?’ Ron asked as they locked the small shed up again.
Harry shrugged. ‘Not sure about the other chaser, but I think Ginny, Gabey, and that Jack from fifth year were all good. You?’ Harry opined.
‘Hmm, yeah Jack was good. Ginny I expected seeing as we’ve been practicing Quidditch with her all summer, Gabey was a bit of a disappointment though.’
‘Really, how do you mean?’ Harry asked curiously.
‘Well, I was certain she would of knocked you off your broom! But nah, she didn’t,’ Ron replied.
‘Thanks mate!’ Harry said sarcastically. ‘Why did you want me to get knocked off my broom!’
‘Nah, that’s not what I meant! Merlin, Harry! I’d never want that, but I just mean, she seemed to be holding back… didn’t you notice? She was using a Nimbus 2001 she should have been faster than Jack, he was only on a school broom, for Merlin’s sake!’ Ron exclaimed.
‘Hmm, yeah that’s true,’ Harry agreed. ‘Maybe she was having an off day or something?’
‘Pretty poor choice of a day to have a sicky if you ask me! Trying out for a new team and all,’ Ron opined.
‘Well, maybe it was just too cold for her or something? I don’t know? I think I’m getting a headache, we should get back in, it could snow it’s so cold out here!’ Harry proclaimed.
‘Alright, come on then.’ Ron led the way back to the castle, they were just walking past the Great Hall towards the staircases when Gabey came into view, running up a moving staircase heading toward Gryffindor tower.

‘Wonder why she’s in a hurry?’ Harry said aloud as he watched her leap onto the last staircase before her current one moved away. Shaking his head, he turned back round to Ron again.

‘What’s the matter?’ Harry asked as he noticed Ron was holding his head protectively as if someone had just hit him across it with something heavy. ‘Ron?’ Harry asked, growing more worried by the second as Ron started to convulse slightly.

‘Ron!’ Harry called helplessly. It was late, close to curfew, and no one was around to help, he was alone and helpless and his best friend was having what looked to be a very nasty vision.
Harry shook Ron by the shoulders trying desperately for him to look at him, to break the hold that the vision had on him.
Finally, the vision seemed to end as the convulsions stopped and Ron dropped to his hands and knees exhausted. Harry knelt down beside him, ‘Ron? Can you hear me? Are you okay?’ Harry asked frightened that something was seriously wrong when Ron didn’t answer him. He was still looking at the ground, his face hidden. ‘Ron please!’ Harry pleaded as he tugged on Ron’s sleeve to try and get him to move his hand away from his face so he could see that he was okay.
Suddenly, Ron sprang up, Harry jumped back in surprise and fright as he looked at Ron’s face. His hands now by his sides, as Harry stared into Ron’s all blue, pupil-less eyes more terrified than he’d ever been before in his life as Ron stepped toward him his hand out stretched, stepping blindly toward Harry, who scooted all the way back until his head banged against the stone wall.

‘They are gathering,’ Ron said ominously in an un-earthly voice. Harry looked at him with a mixture of fear and confusion before finally, Ron crump[ed to the floor again and this time when he rose up, his eyes were his own, and his voice was normal, yet groggy, when he asked, ‘What happened?’

***


After having forced Ron to go talk to Firenze about his vision and then to take a dreamless sleep potion once he had reached the Hospital Wing, Harry returned to Gryffindor Tower long after curfew, feeling drained and worried about Ron and the vision that his friend had just had.

‘What had he meant when he said, “They are gathering?”’ Harry thought aloud to himself as he wound his way up the staircase leading to the sixth year boy’s dormitory.

Whatever it meant, Harry decided that it would have to wait until morning. His headache was growing steadily worse and tomorrow would undoubtedly be another long, arduous day so he fell fully clothed on top of the covers of his bed, falling into a fitful sleep almost immediately.

Had Harry not of been so preoccupied with the night’s events, he may have remembered to clear his mind free of emotion, or he may have even realised that his scar had begun to prickle, as he was now deeply entwined in his very own, Voldemort-induced vision.

***


As soon as she had made her way back to her dorm room, Gabey practically threw her broom onto her bed before sneaking back out of the portrait hole again, much to the Fat Lady’s chagrin who called angrily after her, ‘Make up your mind, some of us would actually like to get some sleep you know!’
Gabey transformed into her animagus form of a black cat and ran all the way to the Dungeons, using all of the secret passages that she could remember in order to get there quicker. Finally, she made it to her uncle’s door, she morphed back into her usual, human self and knocked impatiently on his office door, knowing that he would be preparing for his nightly patrols and so would be awake still.

‘Gabrielle? What are you doing out of your dorm after curfew?’ he asked silkily.
‘Let me in,’ she ordered in a mere whisper, causing Snape’s lips to twitch.
‘And why should I do such a thing, Miss Newton?’ he asked her almost lazily.
She glowered at him in true Snapeish style. ‘Cut the crap and let me in, now!’ she demanded.
Snape narrowed his eyes at her dangerously as he continued to block her entrance. ‘Do not even attempt to take that tone with me, Gabrielle. It will get you know where. Especially not in here,’ he said menacingly.

She huffed, agitated as she kept looking up and down the corridor as if expecting someone to come. ‘Please? I really need to talk to you. It’s important,’ she pleaded.
Snape raised an eyebrow but stepped aside to allow her entrance. He stepped outside his door slightly to take a quick look up and down the corridor to see whom, if anyone was there. It was empty. He turned and snapped the door shut behind him.

‘So, what is so important that it brings you here in the middle of the night, after curfew to my dungeons?’ Snape asked in a surly mood. He was sure he was missing the perfect opportunity to dock ten’s of points from Gryffindor in this time wasting and what made it worse was that it was his own niece putting him in such a foul and unbecoming mood.
‘Well?’ Snape snapped impatiently when the answer wasn’t forthcoming, ‘What is it you want?’
Gabey took a steadying breath as she pulled an envelope from the inside of her robes, and looked directly into her uncle’s eyes. ‘It’s a letter from him, my Father. He wants to come visit me, says he has something to tell me,’ Gabey replied holding the letter out for Snape to take.
Snape stepped forward uncertainly. He didn’t know what to say, he hadn’t expected something such as this and was unprepared with how to handle it. He accepted the letter stiffly, as Gabey moved away to sit on the far sofa where Potter had resided over a month ago, as he began to read.

Dearest Gabrielle,
Please accept my apology for not awaiting your return before I left so abruptly in late August. Your Mother and I finally realised that we were not meant to be, and decided that some time apart would be for the best, for both yourself, and us, Gabrielle.

Forgive me for not writing sooner, but I have had much business to attend to and my priorities as ever have to be that of my Master, the Dark Lord. He has called for me, Gabrielle. He wants me to help build his army for him, to help him win this war against the Mudbloods, Muggles and Blood-traitors - those that contaminate our world, that rightfully belongs to us, the Purebloods.

I have spent many an hour thinking of you, my sweet. Determining on how best to break this most glorious news to you, my Gabrielle. For I have a gift, a gift of power to give to you.
I have spoken of you to my Lord; he seems keen to know more about you and your fascinating powers. I have explained your position of under my brother’s watch at Hogwarts and my Master seems pleased to hear of this knowledge. He has asked that I remain in contact with you, and possibly to meet with you if possible?

I ask you, Gabrielle; will you meet with me at Christmas time and join with me to worship our most Dark Lord and Master? I await your answer by Owl. Use caution when you send your reply, this letter is bound by my blood, and only a true Snape heir may read its contents, but I fear that your reply will have to be brief for there are many spies that oppose us, that are true, my sweet, such as your Mother did when I asked the same of her. Please be careful, Gabrielle, I do not wish upon you the same fate that your Mother made for herself.
Your loving Father,
Sumner Snape.


Severus looked up from the letter written in his brother’s hand to gaze at Gabey who was bent forward, her head in her hands as she sobbed silently on the sofa.
Placing the letter back in it’s envelope and upon his desk, he moved toward his young niece and placed an awkward hand on her shoulder. Leaning into the touch, Gabey used the opportunity to wrap an arm around Snape’s neck and sob into his shoulder. The words, ‘What am I going to do?’ were barely audible as Snape lightly stroked her shivering back, as he contemplated on what he should do.

***


Hey Guys! Whoa, Monster of a chapter or what, huh? Sorry if you thought it was a bit too long, but I had a plan of all the things that I needed to fit into this chapter and it just ended up growing to this mammoth size, lol :p

Anyway, as everyone should know, ‘cos of the release of HBP on Saturday, this story is going to become AU. For those of you who aren’t sure what that means, there is a glossary of fanfiction terms on the HPFF homepage, but in any case it basically stands for: Alternate Universe, (non-cannon).
This also means that once everyone has read HBP, and there are all these new subplots floating around in the HP universe, you won’t be seeing any of those plot lines in Harry Potter and The Link, AKA, this story. Hopefully, that won’t bother any of you as you’ve read this far anyway, so I don’t particularly see why it would, but just in case, now you know ;p

Also, you are probably wondering how much longer this story is going to continue for? Well, I don’t have a definite answer at the moment, but I can safely say that my two previous time scales that I had been telling everyone before are now out the window and so, Not July, Not August, Probably Not September… maybe sometime after that? In some ways this is good, ‘cos it leaves you with a familiar story to continue reading alongside all the new 7th year fics that are soon to pop-up after people read HBP.

I also wanted to say that for those of you who haven’t checked out my Author’s page recently, should; the banner advertising the story called ‘The Sandman’ will be coming v.soon! ~Sam.


Chapter 25: Of Talks and Disturbing Visions
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Chapter 25: Of Talks and Disturbing Visions.


This story is now AU. I hope that you all continue to read despite the fact, as I am now attempting to write the rest of this story as quickly as possible so that I can work on a cannon 7th year fic that I have planned and quite a few ‘different’ fics too, including some ‘challenge fics’ :D Sorry for the delay in getting this chapter posted! ~Sam.

*


‘We need to speak to Dumbledore,’ Snape announced as he continued to comfort his niece. His once clean black robes now soiled with her tears.
The slightest nod of her head was all that Snape could see, as she remained clutched tightly to his neck and shoulder. He feared that if she remained any longer his arm would go to sleep, and then they would never get off of the accursed sofa.

She pulled back and took a moment to wipe her eyes on her sleeve. ‘You want to go now?’ she asked already knowing the answer.
Snape nodded. ‘Yes. I think it’s best we let Dumbledore know as soon as possible so that we can decide how best to answer this letter,’ Snape said. He moved to stand and Gabey slipped silently away from him as he did so. She stood and straightened her skirt and robes as best she could before leading the way to the door, Snape following closely behind, the letter from Sumner Snape in hand.

***


When they had first arrived at the headmaster’s office, they had found him uncharacteristically slumped over his desk. Many different parchments littered his desk and as the two drew closer, they noticed that he was asleep.
Snape however, was only mildly surprised, after all it was after two in the morning and anyone with a shred of intelligence would already be tucked up in bed at that time of night. It was with great reluctance that Snape stepped around the desk to shake the aged professor awake, as he seemed to be in need of it.

‘Severus?’ Dumbledore began as he straightened his half-moon glasses upon his crooked nose. ‘And Miss Newton,’ Dumbledore nodded his head at Gabey before turning his attention back to Snape. ‘May I ask what brings you here so very early in the morning, Severus?’

‘You may, we, that is to say, Gabrielle has a received a letter from her father, Sumner,’ Snape announced as he took the seat in front of Dumbledore’s desk and instructed Gabey to do the same.

‘A letter, from your father, Miss Newton?’ Dumbledore inquired, ‘and what does the letter say?’ he asked Gabey, now much more alert than before.

Gabey took the letter from her uncle’s hand and read it aloud, stifling the tears that threatened to fall as she read the part about her mother.

‘The letter is sealed with blood. It can only be read by a true Snape heir,’ Snape informed Dumbledore who was peering at the letter that appeared only blank to his eye.
Dumbledore sighed before removing his glasses to rub his tired eyes. ‘I see.’ He answered before replacing his glasses. ‘Well, we shall have to formulate a response. He wants to meet Miss Newton, and so he shall…’ Dumbledore began.
‘He most certainly will not!’ stormed Snape as he rose from his chair. Gabey stood too, the idea was ludicrous, to allow a known Deatheater access to his daughter only to take her to the Dark Lord to become a fellow Deatheater as well!

Dumbledore raised a placating hand and motioned for the two to sit. ‘I do not mean for us to simply allow Gabrielle to meet her father and him take her away to Lord Voldemort, Severus. No, she will be protected, I assure you,’ Dumbledore responded.

‘What do you propose?’ Snape asked reluctantly as he re-took his seat.
‘There is a Hogsmeade weekend coming up. It would allow for the perfect opportunity for the meet to take place under supervision of Order members and it would also mark for a perfect excuse for Gabrielle to be outside of Hogwarts,’ Dumbledore announced.

Snape thought for a few moments, and in the silence Dumbledore offered Gabrielle a Lemon Drop, to which she gratefully accepted. ‘Outside of Hogwarts, he will be able to apparate in and out. It would also be a lot easier for him to appear and then apparate away taking Gabrielle with him,’ Snape opined.
Dumbledore nodded. ‘Yes it would, but not if we place anti-apparation wards around the meeting place,’ Dumbledore replied, the familiar twinkle in his eye that always reminded Snape of a naughty school-boy’s wink.

***


The following morning Harry awoke to Ron’s voice, loud and next to his ear. He rolled over and buried his head beneath his pillow in an attempt to block out the intruding noise.

‘Harry! Harry wake up! I need to talk to you,’ Ron’s voice penetrated the soft cushioning of the pillow. Harry sighed and slowly sat up straight. Ron handed him his glasses and he blinked at the face of his best friend.

‘Shouldn’t you be in the hospital wing still?’ Harry asked sleepily.
‘Nah, I snuck out when Pomfrey wasn’t watching,’ Ron replied casually, ’but I need to tell you what I saw last night, what I saw in my vision,’ Ron announced anxiously.
Harry yawned. ‘Can’t this wait ‘till morning?’

Ron looked to the side and out the window. The sun had already risen and they were the only ones still in the dorm room. ‘It is morning, Harry,’ Ron answered slightly amused.
Harry sprang up and almost collapsed to the floor when his feet became tangled in the covers. ‘It’s morning already! Why didn’t you say so? I’ve got a class to get to, Ron!’ Harry stormed as he whizzed into the bathroom to wash.

Ron shook his head at his friend’s antics. He’d tell him later that all classes had been postponed until further notice.

Once Harry returned to the room, still in a flurry about being late to Transfiguration class, he noticed that Ron was wearing his weekend clothes, and that he didn’t seem the least bit bothered about missing his class. ‘Have you got the morning off or something?’ Harry asked distractedly as he searched underneath his bed for a missing sock.

‘You could say that,’ Ron replied coolly. Harry raised his head from his searching to look at him. ‘What do you mean?’ he asked as he grabbed the sock.
Ron sighed as he ran his hand through his hair. ‘There are no classes today, Harry,’ he began, effectively receiving his friend’s full-attention. ‘ And there probably won’t be tomorrow either.’
Harry moved so that he was sitting opposite Ron on Seamus’ bed. ‘Why not?’ he asked concernedly. ‘Has something happened? Is it something to do with Voldem-‘

Ron shuddered at the name. ‘Malfoy, actually,’ Ron replied cryptically. Harry rolled his eyes.
‘What’s he done now?’
‘He’s missing, no one knows where he is,’ Ron answered, to which Harry quirked an eyebrow in surprise. ‘Not only that, but so is Nott, Crabbe, Goyle and Pansy Parkinson,’ Ron replied, his brow furrowed.

Harry rolled his eyes. ‘So they’re what? All off gallivanting together or something? And there’s no lessons because they decided not to come back?’ Harry asked annoyed that Malfoy and the others who had taunted him throughout his years at Hogwarts were causing such mayhem.

‘That’s the thing though,’ Ron began slowly, ‘ Last night, in my vision… d’you remember?’ Harry nodded, eyes wide as the scene replayed itself before his eyes, ‘Yeah I remember, Merlin you scared me last night!’ he exclaimed.
Ron smiled. ‘Sorry about that, mate. Anyway, in my vision I saw them… Malfoy and the others I mean. I saw them leave Hogwarts and go into the forest. They had their brooms with them but that was it, I mean they didn’t have anything else with them,’ Ron said.

‘Have you told Dumbledore this?’ Harry asked as he tried to puzzle the pieces together. Ron shook his head. ‘Why not?’ Harry asked eyebrow arched.
‘Because of what else I saw,’ Ron said, ‘I saw you, Harry,’ Ron locked eyes with Harry as though trying to determine his reaction.
Harry’s brow furrowed in confusion. ‘What do you mean?’
Ron sighed as he rubbed the back of his neck. ‘I saw you… with them. I saw them meet you inside the forbidden forest, Harry. You were expecting them and they were expecting you… it was like you went there purposely to meet them, like it had been arranged.’
Ron chanced a look at Harry’s face. ‘It didn’t happen, Ron. I know it didn’t. I’ve been in here all night. After your vision, I took you to the Hospital Wing and then I came straight back here and went to bed. I didn’t arrange to meet Malfoy and I certainly didn’t go into the Forbidden Forest last night!’ Harry exclaimed.
‘I know, I know you didn’t. But I definitely saw your face, Harry,’ Ron said quietly. ‘It may not have really been you, but Malfoy and the others did and they were expecting you.’

‘What are you saying?’ Harry asked a feeling of dread sinking to the bottom of his stomach.
‘I think someone is impersonating you, I don’t know how… polyjuice maybe? But someone is out there pretending to be you and doing things that could get you locked up in Azkaban for life,’ Ron said seriously.

Harry buried his head in his hands. He felt so confused by Ron’s words. ‘Why would anyone try to impersonate me?’ he thought to himself. ‘What are they doing? And how are they doing it?’ just some of the questions that filtered through his mind.
He took a deep breath and looked up at his friend’s face. There was more, he could tell. He wasn’t telling him everything and he knew it.

Standing up to walk over to the window. Harry lent his forehead against the cool glass in an attempt to calm himself down. ‘What aren’t you telling me, Ron?’ Harry asked his gaze fixed on the landscape outside.

Ron swallowed as he too made to stand up. How was he supposed to explain this? ‘The vision changed, I didn’t see what happened when you met with Malfoy and the others,’ he began.
‘What happened?’ Harry replied in a low tone, his focus still on the mountains.
‘There were Vampires… lots of them. They were circling around you. They didn’t seem like they wanted to harm you though, which is odd. It was almost as if you were there leader or something,’ Ron opined.
Harry remained silent as he stared at his own reflection in the glass.
‘You told them to go hunt. A Muggle village called Drewsteignton; I think that’s in Devon. Anyway, they were feeding and some even Sired them…’ Ron drifted off as he looked up at Harry.
Harry turned to Ron, before walking out the boy’s dorm and out of Gryffindor Tower.

Ron sighed before quietly finishing, ‘…and then they Sired you.’


***



Hey guys, I’m leaving this chapter at this minor cliffy so that I definitely post an update today, as I’m hoping to get this story finished before I leave for Uni on Wednesday this week, as for some strange reason I can’t login to my HPFF account on my laptop which is what I’ll be using at Uni… I will try and find a way around it though; I just don’t know how long it will take. So, expect quite a lot of updates here over the next couple of days : D

Hope you liked this one and don’t forget to review! I really want to know what you think at this point as I’m struggling to make myself write more for this story, when what I really want to do is start writing some original fiction that I have planned. Your reviews from here on are what will keep this story moving! :) ~Sam

EDIT: I've now worked out what was wrong with the laptop, (internet security settings were on to high) so I can still access the site when I'm away :D. Which also means I don't have to rush untill Wednesday, now that I think about it, lol. But I'm still going to try and finish this story asap!


http://www.harrypotterfanfiction.com