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A/N. :
Hello again. As many of you have read the new HBP by now, you will know of the gizillion things that have now become canon. Please keep in mind that when I planned this story, I had no idea about these things, and there are certain things that will be out of whack and against canon. So just be warned! Thanks to the many of you who have read this! Please review, I really appreciate it. TTFN



Chapter 5

News of a Death


Harry entered the kitchen of 4 Privet Drive.

“WHERE THE BLOODY HELL HAVE YOU BEEN?” Petunia screeched at him. Harry jumped not expecting this sort of welcome.

“I, ah, I spent the night with Chaffy, my friend from work” Harry responded quite confused at her reaction. She looked like she hadn’t slept and seemed worried.

“Harry!”

Harry spun around to see Remus walking into the kitchen followed by Tonks, and Moody. “Thank Merlin you are alright!” Remus said obviously relieved to see him.

“What’s going on, why are you here?” Harry asked puzzled.

“Your aunt told Mrs. Figgs that you hadn’t come home last night. We were worried something happened. The whole order is scanning England looking for you” Tonks replied, and Harry turned around to look at his Aunt. She had gone to Mrs. Figgs? She knew about Mrs. Figgs? He didn’t know what to feel, but soon began to feel anger rising in him. He was old enough to take care of himself! He has survived some plot or scheme to end his life for the past five years, but no one wanted to treat him as anything more that a mere helpless boy!

“But I thought there was always someone from the order following me around?” Harry said and noticed their looks.

“What? You didn’t think I’d noticed the guards under concealment charms?” Harry asked.

“There was a mix-up, and you were alone for maybe half an hour in which you managed to disappear” Remus said and smiled; now feeling relieved that Harry was quite alright.

Harry coaxed himself to relax as he noticed that they were only concerned for him. Then he smiled, but for other reasons. He had been wondering all day who his guard had been last night and how much or what had they seen. He felt relieved that at least by a stroke of luck he had had his private time. If he was going to be seeing Veronica again, and he reckoned that he did want to see her again, he better set up some sort of agreement with the Order. He would like to have some privacy!

“Unless you don’t want to be locked up in here, I suggest you let someone know where you are. We can’t have you disappear like that again” Moody barked at Harry.

“All right” Harry conceded quite annoyed. He had learned to ignore the fact that he was being watched at all times, but this was ridiculous.

“I will go to headquarters and call off the search” Moody said and disappeared with a loud crack, making Petunia jump high, and almost drop a pan she was holding in her hands.

Remus approached Harry. He spoke in a calmer tone of voice now. “I am glad you are all right. But…I also came for another reason” He said as he pulled out an envelope from his robes. Harry looked at the envelope; it had the seal of the ministry imprinted on it.

“What’s this?” Harry asked when Remus handed him the envelope.

“Did you read yesterday’s edition of the prophet?” Remus asked with a concerned expression.

“No, actually I haven’t. By the time the owl came, I was running late. I just paid him and left for work. Why, what’s in it?” Harry asked curious.

“Let’s go up to your room. I think you should read it before you open this letter” Remus replied enigmatically. Harry turned to look at his aunt, who was now ignoring him.

Harry nodded and Remus and Tonks followed him. Remus looked around the messy room. There were clothes strewn about the floor. Books everywhere, papers stacked on a chair. He saw the pile of letters on his desk, quite a few of them unopened. Remus absorbed all he was seeing, but didn’t comment. Harry was searching through piles of stuff, and pulled out yesterday’s edition from where he had thrown it the day before. He unrolled the paper and stared at the headline.

SIRIUS BLACK: An innocent man died?

Sirius Black, who escaped from Azkaban two years ago is reportedly dead. He was murdered the same night You-Know-Who was declared returned. A few of the Official reports were finally released on the incident last May at the Ministry of Magic where You-Know-Who was recognized by Minister Fudge as being once again active and in power. The Daily Prophet learned that the incident involved the Boy-Who-Lived, Harry Potter, and several of his classmates from Hogwarts whose names are not being released. Many details are still classified, and will not be released for public records, but this correspondent got information from a source inside the Ministry. It appears that You-Know-Who and his supporters lured the youngsters into a trap in order to obtain a the record of a prophecy for use against the wizarding world. Ministry Aurors arrived and several arrests were made of Death Eaters by the Aurors and who are now in custody of the Ministry. They will be sent to Azkaban once the new security is finalized. In addition to the Ministry aurors, Remus Lupin, a registered Werewolf was present, and Albus Dumbledore, Headmaster of Hogwarts. Per his statement, his presence there was due to the fact that “[his] students were in danger”. It is rumored that Dumbledore himself fought against He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named, but no details have been confirmed. But the biggest surprise to us was to learn that escaped convict Sirius Black, who we now know was the Godfather of the Boy-Who-Lived, was also present. Per official court documents, and testimonials taken from those present at the incident, Sirius Black was dueling against Death Eaters in order to save his Godson. This information was obtained from classified files of the confessions received by the Death Eaters in custody under the influence of Veritaserum. When questioned, the Death Eaters claimed that Sirius Black was an innocent man, that Peter Pettigrew was still alive, as was stated two years ago by Harry Potter himself. Today, it doesn’t matter if Sirius was innocent or not, for on that day he was murdered by Bellatrix Lestrange, a known Death Eater and Azkaban fugitive. Lestrange escaped along with You-know-who, but her husband and several other Death Eaters caught are still in custody (See page 9 for more details). Details of Mr. Black’s death are confidential, and are unavailable at this point. We at the DP would like to extend our condolences to Mr. Potter in the passing of his Godfather.


Harry tried to suppress the tears that he felt after reading the article. He felt anger mostly, at the fact that they still questioned Sirius innocence.

“The Order will be having a funeral for Sirius this weekend,” Remus spoke after a long silence.

“There is no body to bury,” Harry replied harshly.

“I know, but he at least deserves a funeral. So everyone has a chance to celebrate his life,” Remus replied in a serene tone of voice and placed a hand on Harry’s shoulder. Harry brushed the hand aside and turned away from them.

“You don’t have to come if you don’t want to” Remus offered sighing.

“No! I’ll be there,” Harry replied without turning around, his shoulders slump in dejection.

“Someone will be here to pick you up,” Remus added and turned to look at Tonks. “Also, that letter in your hand is Sirius’ will. He left everything to you.”

“I don’t want any of it!” Harry replied angrily.

“I’m sorry Harry. I know this is hard for you, but you’re not the only one suffering his loss,” Remus replied a bit more hotly than he had intended.

Harry looked down at his feet and was ashamed for a moment. Remus regained his composure. “Until you turn 17, everything he left will belong to you. After that, you can do whatever you wish with it. I must be going now. I will see you on Saturday.” Remus said and dissapparated.

Harry stared at the spot where Remus had been a few seconds before, and he felt terrible. He was being very insensitive and just then he realized that Sirius had been Remus’ best friend too. Remus was also grieving his loss. He turned to Tonks.

Tonks smiled gently at him. “He will be fine,” she stated. Harry nodded.

“I have to go out and get some provision and some clothes,” Harry said after a while. “Is my guard here?” He asked asked trying to hide his annoyance.

“I got the shift today,” Tonks replied “but I think I will just accompany you like a regular person,” she said eyeing Harry but he didn’t say anything, and only nodded.

Harry looked in his room for a change of clothes and checked his wallet. He had enough money and would not have to go to the bank. Good thing, since it was Sunday.

“Let’s go.”

****

“Harry?” a female voice called from nearby. “Hey, Harry, over here!”

Harry turned around to see none other than Veronica, Nancy and Becca waving at him from across the street.

“Who are they?” Tonks asked as Harry waved back, and she noticed the blush on his cheeks.

“I work with one of them, one works across the street from where I work, and the other girl I met last night. Come on,” Harry responded and crossed the street to them. They were sitting at a little bistro having a cup of coffee.

“Hey, what are you doing here?” Vero asked standing and rubbed her cheek against his, and sounded a kiss. Harry blushed, but she had explained last night that it was the way she greeted friends.

“Hello Veronica. Hey Becca, Nancy. We were just shopping for some clothes. This is my friend N...”

“Tonks, call me Tonks,” Tonks interrupted before Harry used her name.

“Nice to meet you. I’m Veronica, but call me Vero, and this is Becca, and one of my roommates, Nancy,” Vero said

“Tonks, that’s a cool name,” Becca said shaking her hand. “And I love the color of your hair,” Becca continued. Today, Tonks had her hair a deep purple.

“Thanks.”

“So, you guys done shopping?” Vero asked as they sat down.

“I still need to buy some provision, so I can eat,” Harry replied.

“You can do that later. There’s an amusement park in town for some festival or something and we were going to go and check it out. Why don’t you join us?” Becca offered.

“I got nothing better to do,” Harry shrugged. It would be nice to get his mind off Sirius and this weekend, and the unopened letter at home. He turned to Tonks.

“I’m in,” She grinned.

“Great, let’s go,” Vero said and stood up “My car is around the corner,” She said and grabbed Harry’s hand and pulled him along.

“This is your car?” Harry asked as they stopped in front of a small BMW. “How can you afford a car like this?” He asked perplexed, she had been working at a newspaper office, but had quit just a few days ago and was looking for a job. She didn’t seem to be in a position to own anything like this.

Vero bit her lip, and sadness entered her eyes. “My parents insisted I have it. I refused it like I always refused their charity, I don’t like to take what they give me, but this was the last thing they wanted me to have before they were murdered”

They were silent for a moment, Harry feeling like an idiot. “I’m sorry” He mumbled.

“It’s alright. It is still hard to think of them” She then turned and looked at the car. Harry understood exactly how hard it was to think about someone you love and you lost.

“I couldn’t let go of this car, I thought that by keeping it I would somehow make it alright with them. I hope they know I love them” She said and opened the trunk for Harry to place his bags. “Plus, it is very salvage” She said the word in Spanish. “Meaning cool” She said when they looked at her perplexed. They smiled.

“So you brought this car in all the way from Nicaragua?” Harry asked wondering at the amount of money it took to do such a thing, plus paperwork and fees and all that stuff.

“Yeah”

“That must have cost you a fortune!” Harry exclaimed. Vero blushed. “Yes, it did”

Harry discovered that Vero was in fact a millionaire, but she said she didn’t just tell anybody about it, and she certainly didn’t act like one. Besides, she wouldn’t be owner of her fortune until she turned 18. For now, she had to ask to have money from the legal guardian, and she hated it.

They arrived at the park, and in no time they had terrorized the small amusement park. When the day was over, Vero gave Harry a lift to the market and stores to stock up on food.

“Now where to?” Vero asked.

“Can you drop me off first? Chaffy is coming over to see me tonight” Becca said and her face flushed.

Vero smiled “Sure”

After dropping Becca off, Vero took Tonks and Harry to Little Whining, and to #4 Privet Dr.

“Nice to meet you Vero, Nancy” Tonks said as she got out and headed to the trunk of the vehicle to collect bags.

“Likewise Tonks” Vero replied “See ya Tonks!” Nancy added

“Thanks. I had a great time” Harry said and got out of the car.

“Anytime” Vero said and winked at him, then drove off.

“Vero’s pretty cute” Tonks said and giggled at Harry’s blush.

*******
So? What are your thoughts! I'd really appreciate your feedback! Thanx!

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