Viktor was understandably nervous given that it was the Morning of the First Task.
George attempted to comfort him, by not protesting when the Bulgarian Seeker insisted on holding him close. He was still worried about his dad; he’d had no news from his Grandfather. No news must equal good news.
Fred had been rather attentive to Angelina after seeing his dad’s pale body struggling to breathe before they had placed Gideon in bed with him. He split his time outside of classes with Greg tutoring, which usually meant Harry was close by and with Angelina. Fred and Angelina were usually studying, with not so random breaks to snog.
George studied in the Slytherin Common Room with Viktor; it was the only place they were mostly ignored. Hufflepuff, Ravenclaw and Gryffindor weren’t as kind, things ranged from being accused of betraying Hogwarts by dallying with a ‘rival’ to denouncements of his sexuality from Muggleborn or Muggle-raised witches and wizards. Though the poof remarks mostly came from Ron or Muggles. Hermione was rather vocal about it as was Ron that it was ‘unnatural’.
Alicia stayed quiet but Lee Jordan, Angelina and Fred all jumped to his defense. Angelina thought it was romantic, but only when Alicia wasn’t around.
Karkaroff came over to fetch Viktor after lunch on the Friday of the First Task.
Viktor pulled George to his feet and kissed him hard, “Watch me, will you?”
George hissed softly, “I’ll be cheering for you.”
Viktor hugged him and then followed Karkaroff joining Madam Maxime with Fleur Delacour and McGonagall who was with Cedric.
George swallowed nervously, what was the dangerous task his Viktor was about to face?
The First Task
They headed out following the crowd.
Draco held Harry’s hand as they made their way towards a not-quite invisible stadium-like enclosure. It wasn’t much different from the Quidditch World Cup stadium except that it was smaller.
Remus and Lucius had saved them all plenty of seats.
A whistle blew and Bagman tore out of a large tent.
Moody was pacing near the Judges’ dais looking angry.
Bagman announcing, “The object ladies and gentlemen is for the Champion to retrieve the Golden Egg from a nest of dragon eggs as safely and creatively as possible. Number one is Cedric Diggory of Hogwarts, Hufflepuff House.”
A roar sounded in the stadium, in it was a dragon.
Blaise shouted excitedly, “Swedish Short Snout!” he’d been reading up Dragons most of his life due to his complex relationship to them because of his Chuvash ancestry. He felt a little thrill seeing Charlie down there.
Cedric looked a bit green, as he headed out to the stadium’s floor and faced the dragon.
Everyone looked on, both curious and frightened.
Cedric transfigured a rock into a Labrador.
A curious piece of magic that had Fred contemplating a new product…
At first Cedric’s ploy seemed to work, he was able to sneak up on the dragon at first.
“He’s taking risks, this one!”
Then to everyone’s horror, the Swedish Short-snout turned and started breathing fire at Cedric. He grabbed the egg and ran, but not before his robe caught fire.
“Clever move with the dog- pity it didn’t work! Narrow miss there, very narrow…”
A dragon keeper, Charlie verified that all the true eggs were uninjured and even untouched while the Hogwarts’ Champion was tended to by Nurse Pomfrey.
“Very good indeed!” Bagman was shouting. “And now the marks from the judges!”
Cedric was awarded points by the judges, receiving a eight from Madam Maxime, a ten from Dumbledore and Bagman, a nine from an exhausted-looking Percy Weasley who must still be running the tournament in Crouch‘s absence and a six from a glowering Karkaroff. Leaving Cedric with a grand total of forty-three points.
Cedric was hailed with a Hero’s cheer from most Hogwarts students and staff.
“One down, two to go!” Bagman yelled as the whistle blew again. “Number two, Miss Delacour, if you please!”
Fleur was trembling from head to foot.
Having met other Veela and realizing that her abrupt and proud nature was probably a creature trait; Harry felt more warmly toward her than he had done so far as she exited the tent with her head held high and her hand clutching her wand.
The crowd waited with baited breath as Fleur approached the Welsh Green.
Fleur’s voice rose singing an incantation in French.
The Chuvash and their companions watched surprised, as the Dragon’s eyelids grew heavy and soon closed.
Fleur managed to put the Dragon to sleep with her unusual spellwork, it did however manage to snort fire a bit set her robes alight. Barely concentrating she put out the sparks with a bit of conjured water.
While the crowd watched with bated breath Fleur managed to pass the sleeping dragon and retrieve her golden egg.
The crowd erupted into applause once more…
Fleur was of course successful too. A pause, while Fleur’s marks were being shown. She was awarded a seven by Karkaroff, Percy drew a nine, Madame Maxime gave her ten while Dumbledore and Bagman chose to grant her eight.
There was more clapping… then, for the third and final time, the whistle.
Bagman shouted, “Last, but by no means least Durmstrang Institute’s Champion, Seeker for the Bulgarian National team and the Vratsa Vultures, catcher of the Quidditch World Cup Snitch, Viktor Krum.”
Though his cheering couldn’t truly be distinguished from the others, no doubt George’s was the loudest. Though Viktor hadn’t made any true claim or overture, George found himself wondering if his fathers recovered if Viktor might wish to ask for the right to court him. Despite his cheering, George was a bit worried about Viktor facing a full-grown nesting mother dragon.
Viktor smirked, holding his wand aloft he did what all Chuvash do when facing difficulty: he changed the rules. “Acio Firebolt.”
Zooming from the ship came his Firebolt, Viktor leapt into the air landing gracefully on his broom. Winking at George he flew quiet close to the dragon. Mostly she ignored him, he could adjust his scent some and gave great care to avoid giving off the scent or aura of a predator. He spotted an opening for the eggs and dove.
“Very daring!” Bagman was yelling, “Look at him Fly! The best Seeker in the world, Ladies and Gentleman. I give you VIKTOR KRUM!”
Viktor ignored the screams of terror for him and shouts of awe. Trusting his instincts, Viktor held onto his broom until the last second when he pulled out of the dive. Snatching up the golden egg and was careful not to touch any of the other eggs.
“That’s some nerve he’s showing - and - yes, he’s got the egg! Viktor Krum has managed to succeed in the shortest time. With a broom, what else should we expect to see from the greatest Seeker of our times?”
Now it was time for scores, begrudgingly Madame Maxime gave him a nine, while Dumbledore gave him an eight. A slightly pale Percy awarded him a nine as well, while Bagman and Karkaroff gave Viktor both tens.
George shouted. Viktor had the highest score at forty-six having scored higher then Cedric.
He got strange looks from his own House and Ravenclaw while Hufflepuff glared.
At a nod from Blaise and seconded by Draco, Slytherin stood and gamely clapped for all the participants.
Due to Slytherin’s show of gamesmanship, the others present politely clapped for the champions.
“In First Place, Viktor Krum with forty-six points. Cedric Diggory with forty-three in Second. Third Place, Fleur Delacour with forty-two points. The second task, will take place at half past nine on the morning of February the twenty-fourth. Until then, folks have an excellent winter holiday and I hope to see many of your smiling faces at the Yule Ball.” Bagman announced.
Viktor ignored his schoolmates and went to find George.
George grinned up at him, speaking in faltering parseltongue, “That was really amazing. Merlin, you’re an amazing flier. It was like watching you at the World Cup all over again.”
Percy made his way over, “That was some flying, your reputation is well-deserved.”
George blushed slightly.
Percy laughed, “Percy Weasley, though hopefully not for long. I’m filling in for my boss Mr. Crouch. I work in his department. I’m George’s older brother.”
“Not for long?” Viktor asked confused.
“I’m hoping my boyfriend sees fit to propose.”
Fred glanced to see both Charlie and Bill coming towards them. He let go of Angelina’s hand. “Bill’s here.”
George turned white, sure it was bad news.
Bill however, was grinning broadly; “I guess I made it right on time. That was spectacular flying. William Weasley, call me Bill. I used to be a Keeper for Gryffindor but I’m a Curse Breaker for Gringotts these days. I came to fetch my brothers.”
George’s fingers ended up holding fast to Viktor’s without realizing it. “Is he… are they…”
“They’re fine. They’d like to meet us. Since you two are sure of age, unlike my numbskull brothers, Ms. Johnson and Mr. Krum, you can join us if you like.” Bill said nodding at them. He lightly jabbed Charlie in the shoulder, “It seems Percy, George and Fred found themselves people who don’t find them ugly. We can’t lose to them, right?”
Blaise felt his heartbeat quicken, he was definitely more then a little attracted to the older Chuvash. He had every intention of finding a way to get Charlie’s attention.
“I need to…” Percy stammered nervously.
“Oliver’s already at the Hall. He stops in daily to check on Dad. Remember he was there when he fell ill.” Bill tugged a paper out of his robes. “Did you see this?”
“Molly Weasley nee Prewett under investigation,
‘Molly Prewett, former Gryffindor Prefect is under investigation for numerous charges’ says a source, ‘Aurors are investigating her on charges of seven counts of kidnapping, illegal use of Love potions and mind rape, filing falsified records with the Ministry, bribery and abuse of minors amoung other charges.’ This reporter was also told that Gringotts is investigating her for multiple counts of theft, false representation and the purported worst crime under goblin law- embezzlement.
An anonymous source close to the Weasley Patriarch said that on behalf of his son and grandson, Ms. Prewett would soon find herself under a lawsuit brought by Lord Weasley. In a world that relies on the paternal line for inheritance mostly, a woman who goes so far as to present children to her ‘Bondmate’ as his own is a person of no concept of honour or shame. As such two children falsely attributed to Arthur Weasley, Head of Ministry Department of Misuse of Magical Artifacts will be summarily disinherited from the Weasley family. Considering their marks are public record, if I were their father I wouldn’t claim them either.
Rita Skeeter Exclusive- stay turned for more on this exciting shocking story.”
“Wow, so…” Charlie began.
Bill put his hand up to hush him, “I believe this is a topic for another location. I have a portkey from grandfather to take us all to the Hall.” He tugged it out; it was an empty bottle of Ogden’s Firewhiskey.
Blaise touched Charlie’s arm, “Do please tell us how they are. New friend I maybe to the family but I would hate to have you loose a beloved parent.”
Ron had stolen a Daily Prophet after Hermione was done with it; the whispers of his Housemates had made him angry. He’d spent the entire First Task in his dormitory reading these lies about Mum. He punched Blaise, “Get your filthy hands off my brother you disgusting snake.” He shook the paper at Fred and George, “Tell me this is one of your pranks!”
Charlie slapped Ron and knelt to help Blaise up, “I would apologize for my brother’s ill-treatment but he’s no brother of mine. We share no blood.”
Ron stood shaking, “What do you mean you aren’t my brothers? All Skeeter writes is lies. Everyone knows it.”
Bill snorted, “This time, it seems she has her facts straight. You are no blood of ours. Never have been. Compared to us, you’re a coward, your marks are worse then Fred and George together and you have no sense of honour.”
“Neither does Percy have honour, I’m surprised you haven’t decided he isn’t part of your precious family.” Ron sneered.
Bill, Charlie, Fred and George closed ranks around Percy.
“He is our brother. We’ve already forgiven him for his mistakes because he was not at fault. Unlike you he’s redeemable.” Fred glared, he still hadn’t forgiven Ron for cursing him in the back, well attempting to.
Bill held out the portkey, “We should go. Dad is expecting us.”
Ron reached for the portkey.
Charlie slapped his hand, “It’s useless to take you, and the wards have been locked to blood. You have no Weasley blood.” Ignoring the fact that Viktor, Oliver and Angelina weren’t blood. Then again, it had been locked to Molly’s blood and no matter who Ron’s sire was, Molly was still his bearer.
Before Ron could speak again, the five Weasley brothers were gone alone with the twins’ significant others.
Ron was shaking with angry and embarrassment. He went to lunge at Harry but Shishreyu knew what he was about and leapt at him, winding her coils around him.
“My my Mr. Potter, still causing trouble. Ordering a familiar to attack another student. Tut tut ,you’ll be severely punished for this.” Dumbledore drawled, “I believe expulsion would be appropriate in this case and this snake will have to be put down.”
Blaise snarled, “Harry did nothing of the sort. You can’t lay one hand on Harry. All punishment of Chuvash must be met out by our King.” He was still angry that Ron had hit him but warmed by Charlie’s solicitous behavior.
Dumbledore sneered, “I don’t see him and I don’t believe his presence is warranted in this case.”
Dora ran to get Skeeter, knowing this would be an excellent article.
Blaise stood in front of Harry, hissing loudly in Parseltongue. “A child of thou is in danger. I summon thee, Sirius Black, true Lord of the Ancient House of Black and King of the Chuvash!”
There was a crack not unlike Apparation.
Standing there before them was the Chuvash King in all his glory.
“Who summons me?” Sirius I roared.
“I, thy weak and unimportant child.” Blaise said falling on his knees before his lord and king.
Harry bowed low.
Remus, Lucius, Severus and Draco gave slight bows despite not being members of his race.
“Why have you summoned me, Blaise son of Elise and Gregorio?”
Blaise swallowed, “Because this insignificant human believes himself to have authority over one of your children.”
Sirius I turned to glared at Dumbledore, “I told you sir to leave Harry Potter alone. I revealed myself to the Ministry as King of the Chuvash. You dare to threaten my descendant?”
“He ordered his familiar to attack a student.”
Shishreyu hissed, “My lord, king. I am the humblest of your subjects. My Master did not order me. I sensed he was in danger. Our bond though new bide me to protect him. This boy had murder in his heart. My master is a kind soul and deserved no such treatment.”
“It seems this instrument of vengeance disavows your tale, Dumbledore. She claims that this boy had murder in his heart when he attacked my child.” Sirius I glared. “Your threats are not backed by evidence.” He smelled the air, “I smell the scent of my kin.” He hissed in Parseltongue, “Blood to blood, I summon you. Come to me, my kin.”
Harry knelt at his ancestor’s feet.
Neville who was close by also knelt beside him.
Out of the Slytherin ranks came two, Adrian Pucey and Mafalda Prewett.
Sirius I felt one attempt to fight his call, he turned towards them. His face flickering with angry, “You! How dare you hide behind the face of a man who has such blood on his hands!” Sirius I raised his hand and power exploded from it.
This left no doubt in anyone’s mind that he was truly the King of the Chuvash.
Moody tried to fight the tug he felt toward the Chuvash, he had Black blood through his grandmother Charis and did not wish to be exposed. He heard the condemnation in that voice, and then power slammed him to the ground.
“Show me your true face!” Sirius I ordered.
The wooden leg was torn from his body, and magical blue eye at well. His flask soon found it’s way to Severus’ hand.
“Polyjuice potion. I know whose been raiding my private cupboard now.“ Severus said sniffing it.
The still changing body of the presumed ‘Mad-Eye’ Alastor Moody was summoned once more to his Lord.
Lucius blinked, as the straw-coloured hair began to sprout in place of wild grey locks.
Severus gasped, “Barty Jr Crouch? I thought he was dead. He was sent to Azkaban.”
Dora whispered, “A truly loyal servant cursed to deny his master.”
“I am his most loyal servant! I was unable to search for him. I alone does he trust. He is coming for you, Lucius. You will be punished for your betrayal.” The man formerly holding the guise of Moody shouted.
“I never abandoned my true ideals. I am a child of light and can not follow the Dark.” Lucius said quietly, “I never joined of my own free will, a crime the Dark Lord would have hated. My father and former Bondmate conspired to force me to join. Though I may have agreed with the Dark Lord’s views, I cannot say I agreed with his methods. Nor do I sanction the unwarranted attack and torture of good people such as the Longbottoms who never sought to harm anyone.”
“We found a memo claiming that the Ministry kidnapped our lord. We were only trying to rescue him.” Barty Jr. protested.
“You tortured my mum and dad!” Neville yelled, moving to attack the man who had forced him to watch him use Unforgivable Curses on spiders.
The closest person near him was Sixth Year Slytherin Prefect Adrian Pucey whose hand darted out to catch his shoulder. A Glamour encompassed the hand holding onto the irate Gryffindor still and hiding from sight Chuvash claws. “Be still. He will face judgement.”
Something in Neville stopped dead, his attack forgotten as he was chastised.
“I never heard our master order attacks on Muggles or torture of Aurors.” Lucius stated firmly. “Perhaps, my Veela blood made me untrustworthy.” for it was Narcissa who was entrusted with the diary and not him, just as Bellatrix was similarly trusted with an object of equal importance to the Dark Lord. “For all his faults, the Dark Lord did the one thing the Ministry cannot seem to do. He brokered relationships and treaties with Chuvash- mostly without your knowledge sir, “ addressing the Chuvash King, “werewolves, some vampires, and giants.”
“Those are all Dark and Dangerous creatures, Lord Malfoy.” Dumbledore chuckled.
“Chuvash are not Dark!” Sirius I thundered. “It is through us you receive many things. We oversee your Dragon Preserves. We raise snakes for familiars, we harvest dangerous to acquire potion ingredients. We mostly stay out of Wizarding affairs. Though we do allow our younglings to attend your educational institutions if they show an affinity for Wizarding ways. Most of us choose to send our children to Beauxbatons or Durmstrang because they are more welcoming to those with active creature inheritances. It is through Bondings with Chuvash, true Elves, Fae, Veela and the Like that your Magical blood doesn’t weaken.”
“Surely, Bonding to creatures like Werewolves and Vampires are out of the question.” Skeeter stammered.
“Why? True they are cursed, but who cursed them? The Werewolves were created by a curse cast by Morganna herself. She was a Dark Witch; those she cast the curse on had offended her. Her magic was so powerful that it could not be reversed and was passed on because that was the nature of her curse. Vivian, another Dark Witch who was her rival cast the Vampire Curse. It too cannot be reversed.”
“But it can.” Glowing and shimmering, so pale she was almost translucent, the Veela seer stepped forward. “When a Child of Light joins with a Child of Dark in a union of three. Love itself is stronger then any curse. Love can break any curse. Those who wish to be free can be. Those whose souls have been lost will fade away in the presence of the three.”
Lucius, Severus and Remus glanced at one another, was the seer talking about them?
“Is it true that if one copulates with a werewolf during the full moon that cubs, rather then humans will be born?” Skeeter asked.
Sirius I snorted, “I’ve never heard of such a thing occurring and I am older then this fool here. I left the Wizarding Community because I felt my place was amoung my own kind. I see that choice was wrong; the Wizarding World suffers greatly from its own folly. A King of the Chuvash cannot serve as a leader of the Wizarding World but if one cannot lead and return us to our ideals then they are not fit to lead. Hark to the words of Merlin, my friends. All those who use Magic are our kin. Merlin himself was Veela, Arthur himself had Chuvash heritage. Ravenclaw was Veela, Slytherin Chuvash, Hufflepuff true Elf.”
“What was Gryffindor?” McGonagall asked.
“As Head of his House if you do not know, then I shall not tell you.” Sirius stared at her.
“He was half Chuvash.” Neville said quietly.
“Yes Great Grandson of a Daughter of the House of Black.” Sirius I glanced at the shy boy, Chuvash yes but submissive surely. “What was the other half?”
“The Chuvash overpowered his Fae when he came into his powers. When one couldn’t find a witch or a wizard in those days, they often Bonded to those of the Magical races. Or had you forgotten that Dumbledore?”
“I know the Black line is polluted with creature blood as are many others.” Dumbledore glared.
A Hufflepuff stepped forward, “I am Susan Bones, and we have Wood Elf running through our veins. We do not see ourselves as polluted.”
“The Woods have Wood Elf blood as well.” Lucius added.
Dora glared at Dumbledore, “Sir, what blood did the McKinnons have that you distained?”
Dumbledore turned red, “I will not have the Ministry spying on Hogwarts Business.”
Dora laughed, “I never said anything about the Ministry, Headmaster. Is there something we should be investigating?”
“Auror Tonks, Daughter of the House of Black. I am sure that this embarrassment to our House will be wanted by the Ministry.”
Dora kicked Barty Jr., “Where is my mentor?”
“The Trunk.” He spat, “Needed his hair. Crazy old git. Should investigate him. Always muttering about blood on his hands. Innocent blood.”
“Alastor Moody is no murderer.” McGonagall stammered.
“Sticking up for your ex-Bondmate won’t do him or you much good, Minerva.” Severus said quietly.
“But Alastor would never…” she protested weakly. “Take this scum to the Ministry but Alastor won’t be going before the Judicial Council without me. I may have lost some standing because my mother was the last of my Family but the Ross name is still considered honourable. I won’t have him tossed into Azkaban like Sirius Black was without a trial.”
“Would you like us to summon Healer Smythe and Mind Healer Tonks, Deputy Headmistress?” Lucius asked the shell-shocked woman, “Surely after a long and traumatizing confinement, he deserves the best of care.
McGonagall was pale and drawn, “Yes… please. Poor Alastor, I should never have left him…”
Lucius left to go summon the healers he promised, while Severus went with his colleague to help rescue her ex-Bondmate from confinement.
“If you are done threatening young Harry Potter, Headmaster.”
“He has been rude since he returned from Lucius’ care. He refuses to stay with his House.”
“He’s not safe in Gryffindor Tower!” Draco snarled. “His bed there was Cursed. Despite evidence by a Mind Healer, two experts in Dark Arts and an Auror he refused to believe that Harry was under the Nights of Hell curse.”
Durmstrang students whispered the name of that curse in their native tongues. Grindelwald had left deep impressions on them, having lost family through various means to the last Dark Lord.
“That’s a curse of Grindelwald.” Karkaroff whispered.
“Quite true.” Sirius I glared. “If I hear you are personally responsible for any harm done to my heir, I shall rip your head from your shoulders and feed it to the ancient Wurms. Harm any of my children and I shall enact vengeance. The Queen of the Veela’s eye is ever upon you, harm her own and you will soon learn why the wrath of a Veela is sometimes more feared then that of a Chuvash.” Reaching out to rest his hand on Harry’s head, “Son of my blood, I bless thee.” He rest his palm on Blaise’s forehead, “You who seek to honour and serve will find yourself blessed beyond measure.”
Blaise bowed, “I thank thee for thy attention to one as unworthy as I.”
“Thou shall find yourself in a position of prominence, young Zabini,” the Seer spoke, “as the Veela’s right hand. A student of decorum and law, you will prove to be a guide to many. Your children shall be blest.”
Sirius reached Neville, “You too have suffered much, yet your soul is pure. Leave your fear behind; step up from the shadows of your parents. Find your own place.”
“Rise above Longbottom. Someday, your mother shall embrace you.” The glowing Veela child spoke softly.
Neville saw only truth in those eyes and choked on a sob. His mother? Returned to him?
“Mafalda child, Daughter of the Houses of Black and Prewett. Poorly named you are, Battle strength does not suit thee. As the true Head of the House of Black, I grant you the name Sophronia Maia Prewett, Sophronia means wise. If the Prewett family fails to claim you, as is their choice, I grant you status as a Black Heiress. With most of our illustrious family dead, we could use a strong woman like you.” Sirius I declared in English.
Mafalda was in awe of this person; her lips formed her new name in silence. A rare smile spread across her features. “Thank you, sir.”
“A dear child you are.” Sirius I said quietly, “You remind me of my mate.” He turned to Adrian, “New to our ways, you are. First in many generations.” He sniffed, “Ah in the school hierarchy of our Wizarding kind=, it is you who lead. A Veela is prince. A Chuvash King. Eldest woman of Black blood is Queen.”
Mafalda swallowed, her? Queen of Slytherin?
Adrian was stunned, him? King of Slytherin?
“In my day in Slytherin, there was a council. If all present were there, each had a voice. I was not King of Slytherin. Only a descendant of that bloodline could be. You, my child are. Age matters not when tempered by wisdom, justice and mercy. We had a queen but she was weak and fell too easy under the influence of the Prince.”
Draco nodded, “No doubt, my great-grandfather.”
“Indeed, for he had a son named Abraxas. Malfoys have long been Princes, though not all have true right to the title, unlike you and your father.” Sirius I agreed. “Turn to Blaise, he knows much about us. His father was once a member of my court. I shall take my leave. By repeating Blaise’s summons, any of you might be able to summon me. If this person threatens either of you, I shall deal with him.” He glanced at Skeeter, “When you write about this, I did not threaten Dumbledore. I merely promised to protect my own. I am their King while they are too young to stand up for themselves. It is their leader’s duty to protect them even from another who should be charged with their protection.” A jibe at Dumbledore’s failure to live up to the honour and duty of his position as Headmaster.
There was a ripple of Magic and Sirius I; King of the Chuvash was gone.
The five Weasley brothers and two of their significant others were deposited by portkey in the Library of Weasley Hall.
Fred, George and Percy ran forward when they saw their Dad. “Dad!”
Arthur’s arm moved from embracing Gideon to holding his three youngest sons. “Boys! How I’ve missed you.” Ted Tonks had helped remove the tendrils of memory blocking spells. There were many holes in his memories but he knew his sons. In his own way, he’d tried to do his best to protect them. He kissed their foreheads, “Percy I am so sorry I didn’t realize how much she hurt you. Your future should be your choice, if Oliver is who you desire I will not refuse your Bonding to him.” He glanced at the twins. “I know I wasn’t supposed to have favourites but you two were. You reminded me of my greatest friends.” He turned to Gideon. “This is Fred and George. It was George who pulled you out of The Aerie.”
Gideon pulled George into his arms, “You’ve grown up. So tall. I’ve missed so much.”
“I had to do it. You were dying.” George protested weakly. “I didn’t do it on my own. Bill, Charlie and Fred helped.”
“It was you who reached into my prison and pulled me out. You are the most like me and yet not like me. You have your father’s blood. I heard you are inventors.”
“We want to open our own joke shop.” Fred said excitedly, hoping Gideon would approve.
“Tell me about it.” Gideon wanted nothing more then to know everything about his sons…
Fred wracked his brain for a good description, “Honeydukes meets Zonko’s. You should see some of our products. We’ve got Canary Creams. Eat one and it turns you into a giant Canary for five minutes of feathered fun.”
“The Skiving Snackboxes. Still working out the final touches. Sweets that make you too ill to attend class but after leaving, you take its counter sweet. They give you nosebleeds, headaches, and nausea. We’ve got a potion that lets you breathe under water for about ninety minutes. We wanted to play tag with the Giant Squid. We’re working on weather in a bottle- like snowstorms, tornadoes, and thunderstorms. Portable swamps, Ton-Tongue toffees. Don’t work on Muggles well. They are only supposed to have a limited duration.” George grinned.
“Yeah about five minutes.” Fred nodded, “they give you a tongue that’s thick like a snake. Oh and the Quills, we make dictation, spell-check and smart answer. Working on our own firecrackers, got some neat ideas. Oh I want some stones that turn into pets, I’ll call it ‘pet rock, needs no feeding or watering, just your attention. When finished, return to original form’, it’s bloody brilliant.”
Charlie laughed, “You got that from Cedric. He tried to use a Labrador to get past his dragon.” He informed his parents and grandparents.
Gideon chuckled, “You’re all brilliant. Is it true Percy, that you’re barely out of Hogwarts? A former Head Boy and currently the de-facto Head of a Ministry Department?”
Percy blushed, “I’m filling in for Mr. Crouch. I was graciously allowed to sit in as a Judge for him today. How did you know?”
“Your betrothed Oliver was singing your praises. I quite approve of him. He may be a Keeper, but he’s got a fine figure. Arthur used to fly but he was a Chaser like I was. Fabian was a Beater.”
Fred grinned, “George and I are Beaters. Best in School. Draco told Viktor that we could teach his teammates a thing or two.”
George flushed at the mention of Viktor.
“Who is this Viktor?” Gideon asked curious at his youngest son’s reaction.
Viktor stepped forward, introducing himself in faltering English. “Ees me. Viktor Krum. Durmstrang Triwizard Champion. Ee fly for Vratsa Vultures end Bulgaria. Ee flew en Quidditch World Cup ageenst Ireland. Em veery fond uf George.”
George blushed more.
“The Viktor Krum?” Septimus asked, “You’re interested in my youngest grandson?”
“Yess. Em. Hee ess and yeet ess naut Chuvash. Like me.”
“Chuvash? That’s a Creature inheritance in the Black line.” Cedrella said in shock. “Charlie is a Chuvash.”
“Shishreyu said that Viktor’s Chuvash never rose. He can’t transform like Charlie can.” George said quietly.
“You wish to Bond with my son?” Gideon asked, still surprised that an international Quidditch star was interested in his baby. Well, George wasn’t so little and he’d missed out on most of their lives. To have three sons with lovers when he met them for the first time and who were interesting in Bonding was hard to take. He’d lost so much…
“Yees. Eef my parents have no objection. Otec and Maht should like him.”
George whispered, “I promise I’ll get all my NEWTS. I’ll even retake my OWLS. I didn’t care to pass all of them before.” He’d hate to embarrass Viktor because of his marks.
Fred stood up, taking Angelina forward, “This is Angelina Johnson. She’s a prefect and Gryffindor’s Quidditch Captain.”
“I fly Chaser as well.” Angelina said nervously.
“If Fred likes you well enough, I don’t see why you wouldn’t do well for him.”
“Fred’s been studying and we’ve been tutoring a Snake named Greg Goyle.” George added.
“Greg’s a decent bloke but he’s got terrible taste in girls. He likes Parkinson. She’s an awful person. Called poor Harry an ugly whore.” Fred added, and glanced at his grandmother who glared at him, “Was just quoting Grandmother, meant no offence.”
“What would you like us to call you sir?” Bill asked, “Dad’s always been Dad but…”
“Papa is fine.” Gideon said looking up at his oldest son, “You’re twenty-three, correct? Charlie is taller and broader but he’s twenty-one still. Percy is nineteen. Fred and George are sixteen.”
“We’ll be seventeen on April 1st.” Fred said quickly.
“You already came into your inheritance then.” Viktor asked in Parseltongue.
George blushed nodding, “but I’m not a Chuvash.”
“Not a true Chuvash but Chuvash enough to suit me and certainly gorgeous enough to attract my Chuvash. If we were both True Chuvash as is your esteemed brother Charlie,” Viktor bowed slightly, “I have no doubt my Chuvash would have chosen you. It is a rare thing to find a mate of similar age.”
“Excuse me Viktor, but only us three understand Parseltongue.” Charlie said after he translated the exchange for the rest of the family.
Septimus nodded, “If your Fathers have no objection, the House of Weasley approves.”
“In the absence of my brother, I find I am the Head of the Prewett family. It is my joyous duty that my thoughts are in accord with my father-in-law. The House of Prewett has no objections to either Bonding. I wish you joy.” Gideon said with a sad smile, his children were grown and setting out to make their own families.
Arthur hugged Gideon sensing his distress, “Beloved, I see no reason why we can’t put the past behind us. Perhaps, we can start over fresh. Recapture our youthful dreams.”
Gideon felt his eyes fill with grateful tears, children? Children this late in life was not unheard of. James Potter’s parents were older and they had James.
“Papa, a cousin of yours was born a Squib. They’ve been living in the Muggle world; he has a daughter Mafalda who is in Slytherin. She was declared a halfblood by Draco Malfoy, Prince of Slytherin but,”
“With a Squib for a father and a Muggle mother things aren’t going well for her. I shall see if I can adopt her.” Gideon said quietly, “If Arthur has no protests.”
“None beloved.” Arthur said with a grin.
“Now that you’re had a chance to bond with your sons and meet their future Bondmates, we must discuss your sister.”
“Molly, I know what she has done. Stealing my beloved and my children, trying to live a life that should have been mine.”
“I filed charges against her on behalf of the Weasley Family. Perhaps, you would like to add charges yourself.”
Gideon closed his eyes in pain, “I should. Because of her my twin is dead. My health slowly began to fail after the loss of my twin and prolonged separation from my beloved. Until I woke this afternoon in Arthur’s arms, I hadn’t seen him since you were conceived, Fred and George. If not for our soulbond, they might have killed me. Molly hated me. Fabian used to dote on her as did fatherm but she had always been cold to me. Perhaps she sensed that unlike Fabian and Father, I was drawn to men, particularly Arthur. I wanted to be a healer; I studied hard and was accepted to St. Mungos prior to my graduation from Hogwarts. I took and passed their entrance test even before sitting for my NEWTS. Like Percy and Bill I had Twelve NEWTS. Fabian contented himself with eight. He was keen to be an Auror. We were considered at war, despite being physical copies, you could find no brothers so dissimilar as Fabian and I. He was a Beater, while I was a Chaser. I wanted to Heal, he wanted to chase criminals. I was too weak to fight Dolohov; but he fought to protect both of us. When he saw Moody, he thought we were saved. Dolohov cast a curse at us and Fabian took the brunt of it. I was weakened from imprisonment and separation from my beloved and our children. Moody transfigured a Death Eater to look like me. He hid me under an invisibility cloak and summoned the Ministry. Dumbledore had sent Moody to retrieve me. He allowed my brother to be killed and kidnapped me. For that, I shall never forgive him. I shall disown Molly and her children. Her rights as a pureblood heiress shall revert to Mafalda.”
“The Goblins want her,” Septimus said quietly, “for accessing vaults not her own as well as other crimes.”
“Let them have her.” Gideon said bitterly, “She has dragged our family’s honour through the dirt. If it weren’t for her desire to take my place, Fabian might still be alive.”
Fred and George had been together for their entire lives, to suddenly, violently lose their twin would no doubt leave them felling empty or at least half gone.
Viktor bowed, “Vith yoor permission sirs, might I take George home for zee veekend? I vould like fur heem to meet my parents.”
Gideon nodded, “If it is his wish.”
Arthur added his agreement, happy to have his family together. He would have to help Gideon heal emotionally from the loss of his twin and theft of his children as well as missing out on their children’s childhood and adolescence. They might do with a few sessions with Percy’s Mind Healer Ted Tonks.
“We should return to school, Angelina has rounds.” Fred said quickly.
“I’ll take them.” Charlie nodded, “I have to see to the Dragons. They’ll be returning to Romania this weekend. I’ll be returning to indefinite leave. Best thing about having a Chuvash boss, family is highly important to him.”
“You are more then welcome here, Charles.” Cedrella said hugging him impulsively, “It is your home too.”
“If Molly is imprisoned and her children disowned. What will be done with Ronald and Ginerva?” Arthur asked.
“Their father should be searched out and given custody.” Septimus interjected. “They were falsely claimed as Weasleys by a Prewett. I doubt Molly will without Veritaserum divulge their father.”
“I’ll leave that to you sir. I’ll have nothing to do with my sister.” Gideon said.
“I’ll be announcing to the papers your return. Perhaps, we can invite Ms. Skeeter to interview you. She’ll put a wonderful spin on the story that will have romantics crying and people railing at the Ministry to have Molly punished.” Septimus smirked; he would enjoy ruining the woman who had so tortured his son.