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 7. After unlocking the door and greeting Kreacher, who was dusting the photos happily, Harry went to the front room to wait for Sirius to return. 

     Harry watched the clock, ignoring his increasing drowsiness. He was about to drop off to sleep when the clock struck eleven.

    Jumping up from the sofa, Harry looked around, waiting to watch his godfather appear. It was an unnerving sight; the air seemed to leave the room, as though it had gathered elsewhere. In front of the fireplace, Harry watched Sirius form. At first it was just a strange silhouette, only visible because the air seemed to shimmer around the area, in the shape of a man. The frame thickened, and colour appeared, and there he was. Sirius Black.
     He had a huge grin on his face as he stepped to shake his godson’s hand, and as though unable to restrain himself, pulled him into a hug. Like before, the hug was strange yet comforting.
     ‘Harry!’ Sirius said, looking at the bewildered eighteen year old.
     ‘Sirius,’ Harry said, smiling at last.
     ‘Now I have just one thing to ask before we talk. I can’t help but wonder why you’re waiting here for me, when you have a wonderful girlfriend in The Burrow wide awake, waiting for the right time to apparate over here?’ Sirius said, his tone amused yet sharp. He sat down onto a chair, and a nervous Harry followed suit, sitting onto the couch.
     ‘Well..er, I wanted to speak to you,’ Harry said. ‘There’s things we need to discuss.’

     ‘I know, Harry.’ Sirius grinned. ‘But if there’s one thing I’d like you to remember from me, is that if a pretty girl is wanting to spend the night with you, you don’t make her wait.’ Blushing like a tomato, Harry couldn’t help but laugh. This was so extraordinary. His dead godfather had come back, and was giving him advice on girls…
    ‘Er, well, I’ll keep that in mind.’ Harry couldn’t take his eyes off Sirius. He never once thought that Sirius would be sitting in this house again, talking, even joking!
     ‘Right. We have one hour, and after I go and that poor girl comes here, you’re not to bloody speak about me, okay? You’re being such a Remus about things.’ Harry laughed out loud again, despite the small stab of pain at the mention of Lupin’s name. ‘Now, what would you like to know?’
     ‘Where have you come from?’ Harry blurted out, before realising he sounded a bit silly. Thankfully, Sirius nodded and sighed.
     ‘I thought you’d ask that. The one question you ask is a question I can hardly answer. Harry, I’m not meant to be in this world. I don’t know how long this curse’ll last for, and I don’t know its strength, but if there’s a way to end it I will. I can’t tell you where I come from. It’s not like this. It’s just a place, a harmonious place, and everybody’s there.’
    ‘E-everybody?’ Harry choked out.
    ‘Your mum and dad, Lupin and Tonks, Dumbledore, Fred, Colin, Dobby, Cedric and even Snape. Oh, Hedwig, too.’ Sirius smiled. ‘I think it’s heaven, or something.’
     Harry was holding back tears. They were ok. His family and friends, his dead family and friends, were all okay.
     ‘Harry.’ Sirius’s gravely voice snapped Harry back into reality. ‘None of them blame you.’

      Harry wasn’t even aware that he’d been feeling down about it. But at those words, something lifted from Harry’s shoulders and he was flooded with relief and happiness.

A few tears escaped his eyes but Sirius looked away so that Harry could wipe them.
     ‘Your mum is telling you how proud she is, Harry. Your Dad, too. They’re so happy now, they’re always with you, watching over you, but you wouldn’t believe how much joy they feel at seeing you live normally again. Lupin and Tonks, well, they’re cut up about leaving Teddy. They’re thanking you for what you’ve done for Teddy and Andromeda so far. But, Harry, be a better godfather to Ted than I was to you,’ Harry went to protest, saying that Sirius was a fantastic godfather, but Sirius shushed him ‘Snape rarely says much. I mean, he’s spoken to your mum, but he’s just elsewhere most of the time. Dobby is being his usual self, your Dad has taken a great liking to him,’ Harry chuckled, teary eyed and transfixed with Sirius’s words, imagining Dobby with his dad. ‘Fred is telling you to be there for George. He’s saying that George is healing slowly, but he’ll be ok. Oh, and he’s asking you to tell George that do whatever makes him happy. He also made a joke, if that includes Angelina, I really don’t mind if you do her, too. I think it’s best if you don’t tell George that part, though, Harry. Dumbledore is being as confusing as usual with his old philosophical bloody quotes, but he’s happy, Harry. I’ve never seen the guy so effing smiley. Anyway, Dumbledore’s telling you, never favour the dead over the living. I think he’s trying to say that you shouldn’t let this mess you up.’
     There was a silence when Harry took Sirius’s wise words in. ‘They can’t come with you, can they?’ He asked, not looking away from Sirius.
     ‘No, they can’t,’ Siruis said, somewhat regretfully.
     It wasn’t unexpected, and Harry understood anyway.
      ‘Harry, as a godfather and the most rebellious of the Marauders, I am telling you to have a good life. Don’t let this affect you,’ Sirius said, and Harry nodded.

     ‘My time’s almost up. Now, I will be returning home, and making sure that none of your family or friends will be watching over this house tonight. Make the most of it.’
     Harry didn’t really understand what Sirius meant until he saw the trademark smirk on the marauders face. Blushing again, Harry felt embarrassed.
      ‘I’ll be seeing you soon, Harry,’ Sirius said, grinning like his younger self, before disappearing.
      Oh sweet Merlin.

Harry had to sit and reflect on what Sirius had told him. They were all happy, all the people that had died either protecting or fighting for him. It was overwhelming, pleasing and heart-breaking all at once.

      Harry felt like a normal eighteen year old.

      For the first time in his life, he felt like a normal, carefree, happy teenager. But even teenagers have their own problems. As he thought over Sirius’s words, he pulled on his denim jacket and his boots, grabbed his wand and disapparated.

       CRACK!

     Ginny jumped off her bed in fright. She had been sitting there, waiting for the time to apparate to Harry’s.

     Harry breathed in the scent of the room; it smelt floral, just like Ginny did. Sighing in pleasure, he pulled Ginny into a hug and she laughed against his shoulder.

     ‘Okay, well, that was spontaneous!’ She said, smiling up at her boyfriend, who at the moment was looking around the room, which was unchanged from his last visit here. Harry’s cheeks were red, and his eyes bright.

      ‘Thought it should be the boyfriend visiting the girlfriend for once!’ Grinned Harry, happier than he’d ever felt. At that moment they both whipped around; there was the noise of feet thundering down the stairs. ‘Ron..’ Harry said; he had forgotten why this wasn’t a great idea.

      Ginny swore, and Harry had to fight the urge to laugh; the word sounded odd from her mouth. Before she could get out her wand to perform some kind of charm, (and Harry had forgotten he had his, in a daze of happiness) the door flew open.

      Ginny and Harry both had looks of alarm on their faces, but much to their surprise, it wasn’t any of the tall, redheaded boys. It was, in fact, Hermione.

    ‘Ginny, we heard a cr-‘ Hermione started, but stopped when she saw Harry standing there, scratching his head. ‘Oh, um, well, Ron thought maybe you fell or something and told me to come and check…but, uh, you’re obviously okay..’ Hermione was blushing almost as deep as Ginny was. Harry, who was still in a daze, just found the whole thing mildly amusing.

      ‘Oh,’ Ginny said, sounding normal, which meant she had recovered from her embarrassment. Harry saw a grin on her face. ‘Why were you in Ron’s room at midnight? I thought you were downstairs, finishing your letter to McGonagall.’

      ‘I, uhm, well,’ Hermione flushed red once again.

      ‘Let’s make a deal,’ Ginny said, smiling kindly at Hermione, to show that there were no hard feelings and that this was just necessary. ‘You go back to Ron, and tell him that a minor spell of mine backfired, and that I’m fine. Then I won’t tell mum that you’re sleeping in his room. Deal?’
    Hermione, looking half amused, half shocked, walked forward and shook Ginny’s hand. Then she looked at Harry, and laughed.

     As she left, Harry could’ve swore that she’d muttered something, sounding an awful lot like ‘be safe.’

 

 

 

 

 

 

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