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Unlikely Heroes

Chapter Text

Prologue

 

"Useless little freak! Can't do anything right."

Crack!

The belt came down again; he'd been locked in the smallest bedroom for three hours. No doubt Uncle Vernon had worked himself up into a temper.

Harry lay there on the floor since he'd be tossed on it, biting his lip to hold in the cries of pain.

Crack!

Crack!

The belt came down everywhere on Harry's body, he hadn't eaten in three days not that he dare mention it. Harry didn't fight he'd learned not to, he was still being punished for his inflation of Aunt Marge. Though the woman didn't remember, Uncle Vernon did. His uncle also remembered the trouble Dobby caused his first summer back from Hogwarts but believe he; Harry had done that. Harry had been locked up in his room right after, his window barred, his door had a tiny cat flap for food and he was only let out once a day to bathe and use the loo. It had been just like his cupboards, he'd been locked in the dark.

Silent tears rolled down the young Gryffindor's face, it wasn't long until he'd get to go to the Burrow. The Burrow was so different, there was food and like Hogwarts he was allowed to eat it. When Uncle Vernon left Harry was so sore, he crawled to the loose floorboard and pulled out a few potions. He took the pain-killing potion first; then a nutrient one and finally a dreamless sleep one.

Harry never told Ron and Hermione he suffered from nightmares, in the beginning it was just from Uncle Vernon and his temper. Then came the Troll and the Philosopher's stone 'adventure' which Harry saw as something frightening. Second Year wasn't much better with the attacks on Muggleborns and the Chamber opening, facing a basilisk was utterly terrifying, some nights he dreamt of being pinned in the basilisk's eyes and dying. Other nights he was bit by the basilisk and felt the venom eating away at him slowly. Then his nightmares Third Year were about Black chasing him and trying to kill him. After he found out Black was innocent and his godfather, he'd watched Professor Lupin transform into a monster and almost kill him. Peter escaped, Sirius had to go on the run and Harry was being forced to return to the Dursleys. Yes, he had a lot of things to spark nightmares…

Harry loved Hogwarts, he got plenty to eat and he had some friends. He just wished the hero worship would stop. He was not a Hero, he would never be…

He did love the Burrow but the Boy Who Lived stuff was plain freaky…

He just wished he could be a wizard without being the Boy Who Lived…

 

 

Chapter Text

Chapter One

 

Harry was excited, sort of. The Triwizard Tournament was dangerous but you had to be seventeen to even enter much less participate. This was one danger he could avoid…

Ron, Fred and George were mad because they were too young, while Hermione made things worse by telling him how dangerous it was. He didn't need to hear about the death toll or how the last time there was a tournament a creature went wild and killed the Heads of all three Schools.

Harry was doing his best to ignore it all; but it was finally time for the Triwizard Cup to choose a champion.

He heard the crackle of flames change a bit before Dumbledore announced, "Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, Cedric Diggory.

There were boos from Gryffindor and Slytherin, Ravenclaw clapped politely but Hufflepuff was on their feet clapping and making loud noises.

Why were they happy? He could die!

The sound of the flames changed again.

"Beauxbatons Academy of Magic, Fleur Delacour."

There was polite clapping from the Beauxbatons' delegation and some sobbing as well, the Ravenclaws who they shared a table with also clapped some.

There came a third change in the flames.

"Durmstrang Institute, Viktor Krum."

Ron groaned.

The twins teased Ron about his crush being a champion.

There was a reserved applause from both the Durmstrang students and the Slytherins with whom they shared a table.

Harry thought it was all over until, the flames were heard again. He felt icy dread flood his body.

"Pot…Harry Potter!"

There was that awful tone, the one Uncle Vernon used before beating him. Harry looked up; all around him were looks of anger, betrayal and shock.

"Potter! Get up here!"

The Great Hall filled with hissing about cheating and how he was going to be punished.

This was no small thing, it wasn't like he could just scrub cauldrons or polish silver. He was going to be beaten; he just knew it.

Harry slowly wobbled to his feet, his face white with fear and his hands trembling. 'He hadn't done anything, why was his name in the cup? He didn't want to die, they were going to hurt him. He,'

Harry fainted, his magic did the strangest thing, it locked itself in side him and his Glamour the one he used so much magic to hide behind even betrayed him and crashed.

XoooooX

Draco had been watching and complaining when the Hogwarts champion was selected.

A Hufflepuff? Everyone knew they were a lot of duffers; they were cowards and ran away at the slightest hint of danger. Why couldn't it have been a Slytherin? Warrington wasn't a bad bloke; he'd have preferred Pucey who was on the House Quidditch team with him.

The Beauxbatons' Champion was announced and then the Durmstrang Champion, Draco was quite pleased it was Krum. Any Seeker worth his weight in Galleons worshiped and admired Krum.

It should have been all over.

The flames flashed blue again and a charred bit of paper flew into the odious Headmaster's hand.

Dumbledore blinked then stammered, "Pot…Harry Potter!"

Draco glanced around and saw all around him were looks of anger, betrayal and shock because of POTTER.

"Potter! Get up here!"

The Great Hall filled with hissing about cheating and how he was going to be punished.

Draco half expected to see a smug look on Potter's face.

What he saw unnerved him; Potter was chalk white and shaking with terror.

The famous Boy Who Lived was terrified? Mister three-time award Special Service to the school? The Celebrated Rule Breaker frightened?

It was hard to surprise the Prince of Slytherin but watching Harry Potter faint was a surprise. The snap of powerful magic being broke was also highly unnerving.

The first person to run down from the Head Table wasn't Nurse Pomfrey or Dumbledore; it was Uncle Severus, his godfather.

Uncle Severus lifted Potter from the cold stone floor, worry lines etched in his sallow face.

Draco hadn't seen that look since he was eight and tried to brew a difficult potion by himself only to have it explode on him. He remembered the worry and gentleness from his favorite professor when he found him and carried him up from the dungeon potions lab up to his father's study. Mother had been so upset and then cruelly furious, he'd been lectured later and made to promise not to do such a thing again by both his father and godfather.

Dumbledore looked annoyed, McGonagall embarrassed, Crouch vacant, Bagman seemed a bit shocked, the Durmstrang Headmaster Karkaroff irate, and Madam Maxime, the Headmistress of Beauxbatons was outraged.

The only one who seemed to actually care that Potter looked cold and lifeless was Uncle Severus. Why? He thought his godfather and Head of House couldn't stand the boy.

Pomfrey seemed to remember herself and hurried to check on the boy.

Severus waved her off, "Headmaster, we'll see to it that the Potter boy is examined and treated if needed." There was a forced sneer, "Then I'm sure he will be questioned and punished."

Bagman chuckled, "he's just faking. He didn't expect he'd actually be chosen. I can't wait to find out how he managed to get past your age line Dumbledore. We can't discuss anything about the first Task until all the Champions are present."

The Heads of Durmstrang and Beauxbatons started to raise a fuss.

Dumbledore held up his hand, "We'll discuss this in my office."

There was a barely restrained rage in the old goat, Draco knew that look well; Father often had it. Especially when dealing with the Headmaster…

XoooooX

Severus Snape, Potions Master and Head of Slytherin House cradled the cold limp body of Harry Potter, the son of his rival and his best friend. He wanted to hate Harry; he wanted to see James in the boy. What he saw was himself, the self that was reflected in Lily's eyes when they were young.

Severus felt a rage; he could feel scars through Harry's robe. He knew that sending Harry to live with Petunia was a terrible idea. He should have argued harder against it. Petunia tripped Lily, stole her homework, hid her books and sometimes she even hit her. What had she done to Harry?

"Would you please let me treat my patient?"

Severus was jarred out of his brooding thoughts, until he had answers he was going to protect Harry's secret. He used what little magic Harry had at present to weave a Glamour that covered his scars. With all the times the boy ended up in the infirmary; why hadn't Poppy noticed a Glamour? He was concerned she was incompetent. He remembered when Potter and Black were really vicious and he ended up badly bruised. He couldn't hide the marks under his customary Glamour, but the boys were never punished. He hated it, and it isolated him further. It meant that no one was going to save him from his father either…

Poppy cast a few spells; "He fainted." The woman said coldly, "He must have been shocked his little scheme for attention actually worked. I'm sure he'll be punished severely."

Severus was appalled, something was very wrong here. He could hear Lily yelling at him to do something, James too. He had a life-debt to that man that he never repaid, at James' death it transferred to his son. He was going to fix this, somehow, someway; he was going to fix this.

He sat beside Potter's bed, he wasn't leaving until the boy woke up and he could question him. Not interrogate, question.

XoooooX

Draco noticed that Uncle Severus never came back to the dungeons. He ignored his housemates as they continued to berate Potter and Diggory. Finally, just before curfew he cast a disillusionment charm on himself and slipped out when a Slytherin Sixth Year entered the Dungeon Common Room.

Making his way to the First Floor Infirmary being sure to avoid running into anyone including Fitch's cat Mrs. Norris.

There sitting in a chair was Uncle Severus, his mouth was moving but he wasn't talking out loud.

Draco inched closer.

There was a hiss in ancient Gaelic, "Draconis Lucius Malfoy! What are you doing out of the Dungeon?" casting nonverbally a privacy charm of his own creation.

Draco responded in kind, "I didn't see you come down to the Dungeon. You usually check on us. I was worried. I saw your face when Potter fainted. I saw Potter's face before he fainted. He was scared Uncle Severus."

Severus nodded, "I saw that. Poppy didn't even treat him. She looked at him and he fainted to avoid being punished for scheming his way into the Tournament."

"We have to tell Father. Dumbledore was so angry that Potter fainted. Please, there is something wrong with him. I felt something happen to his magic. I don't like Potter much but he looked so frightened."

Severus nodded, "We'll go take him to the Manor, we'll get a real Healer to look at him." He could lose his job for this but he owed Lily and he would do anything for her son.

Draco waited for his godfather to pick up Potter, summoning a house elf.

Severus used a Glamour to make the Malfoy elf look like Potter. Using a powerful disillusionment spell he, Draco and Potter slipped away to his floo in his office.

Emerging in Malfoy Manor's Library, Draco hurried ahead to find his father.

Severus removed his Glamour that he'd cast on the tiny Gryffindor; the only way Lucius would lift a finger for Potter was if he saw some benefit for himself. Saving the Boy Who Lived would make Lucius a hero and Fudge indebted to him.

 

 

Chapter Text

Chapter Two

 

Lucius was locked in his study when he heard running feet and a pounding on the door. Reluctantly, he unlocked the door.

Draco threw open the door, "Father, Uncle Severus is coming. We need your help."

Lucius was a bit confused because it was November and both Severus and Draco should be at school.

"Lucius, I might have found a way for you to remove Dumbledore and to ingrate yourself with Fudge." His old friend said as he entered the study.

Lucius stared, in Severus' arms was Harry Potter, looking weak and fragile. "What are you thinking bringing him here? What if,"

"Narcissa didn't see us. We were careful. Instruct the house elves to be silent if you don't trust her." Was Severus' reply.

Draco was a bit surprised, father didn't trust mother? He remembered all the times mother couldn't be bothered with him and  that Narcissa was never allowed alone with him.

"We both know you never wanted to be bonded to her, you didn't want to take the Mark either but she and your father pressured you. I only took it because of you; you needed someone you could trust at your side. I've always been there Lucius, whenever you needed me. You helped me gain a level of respect in the Dark Lord's inner circle, you convinced him to send me to Hogwarts as a spy to keep me safe. You helped me get hired there as a Potions Master, I wouldn't even have gotten accepted into training without you. Who convinced you to use the Imperious Curse as an excuse? I'm begging you to help him. Something is terrible wrong Lucius; you should have seen him when they called his name. Everyone immediately assumed he cheated."

"Slow down Severus, set the boy down and talk."

Draco saw a look of worry and affection hiding in his father's silver eyes. What was going on?

Severus undid Harry's robe, and tugged off his shirt, there were healed welts and burns from hot liquids. "I swear I never knew. It has to be Petunia. I told you what she did to Lily and I. We have to help him; I can't let him go back there. Please Lucius I never ask for anything, help him. He needs a healer, but Pomfrey didn't even treat him. She walked off on him just like she walked off on me."

Lucius hissed under his breath in Latin, "I always hated that woman, she never reported the injuries that Potter and Black caused. They always singled you out, trying to break you and Lily apart. As if you had feelings for the Mud,"

"Lucius!"

"Sorry, Muggleborn witch more then friendship. You didn't, I should know." He leered.

Severus glared, "Behave yourself. Are you going to help him or not?"

"Anything for you, you always were my favorite snake. I just wish…" Lucius looked at his son, "…never mind. I'll summon our Family Healer." He summoned a house elf, "Treca?"

The little house elf shook, "Yes Master?"

"Fetch Healer Thaddeus Smythe. You are not to inform the woman."

"Yes Master. Treca fetch Healer. Treca no talk to the woman."

Draco was even more shocked, Father never acted like this that he saw. He knew his parents didn't share a bedroom but he thought all parents were like that.

Severus sat with Harry in his lap, caressing his wild thatch of black hair, "Lily, I'm so sorry I let it come to this. I'll protect him. I promise."

It took ten minutes before the healer arrived.

Lucius met Healer Smythe at the door, "You know our expectations, I expect your confidentiality until I say otherwise. We will be informing the Ministry but for now I need your silence and discretion."

Draco watched, as the healer examined Potter. There was a gentleness in his godfather that he'd only glimpsed before, his father stood behind the settee his hand resting lighting on Uncle Severus' shoulder.

Severus reached up absently to cover Lucius' hand with his own accepting comfort.

Healer Smythe spoke, " I know this boy; it's Harry Potter. He's the size of a nine-year-old not a fourteen year old. He shows signs of prolonged starvation and extended abuse, he is currently locked in his mind. It would require a very talented Mind Healer who is an exemplarily Legilimens. He needs a very strict diet, almost as if he was pregnant. He needs to eat constantly, as well as taking a supply of potions. He shows extended use of Dreamless Sleep Potions, he'll need to be weaned off of them. He shows signs that they are losing their potency."

Severus closed his eyes, "What sort of life have you had? If only,"

"Severus, it's not your fault. You didn't know,"

"I begged that man to save them. He could have. Instead," Severus' eyes shimmered with unshed tears, "…he let this happen."

"I'll do everything I can. You know not everyone supports the old fool, I think this time I can have him removed without threats. I'll call Fudge; I'll have the house in London made ready. Draco, we'll see that you're excused from school. Severus can ask Slughorn to take over your classes. I think it's time for Severus Prince to rise." Lucius said, squeezing the younger Slytherin's hand before leaving.

Draco stared at his godfather, "What happened to Potter?"

"Someone who hates magic hurt him. Dumbledore let this happen. Your father is going to do something about this."

"What's going on with you and father?" Draco asked sitting on the edge of his father's desk.

"Nothing, we're just friends."

Draco snorted, "I'm not a Gryffindor dunderhead or a Hufflepuff duffer." throwing his godfather's words at him, "I'm a Slytherin and I'm your godson, give me more credit then that. I know Father doesn't think much of mother; he's closer to you. What did you mean that you've always been at his side? He seems so protective of you and he seems softer, with mother he's so terse and he won't even look at her. You both seem to wish something but then you trail off."

Severus held out his hand to Draco.

Draco moved to slip his hand into his godfather's.

Severus pulled him close, whispering so faintly it was almost too low to hear, "I wish you were my son."

Draco let the man hold him; he knew that Severus cared for him, "I wish I was too." He was closer to his godfather then to either of his parents but his father did his best to keep distance between him and his mother. He just wished his father were around more.

XoooooX

Lucius sent three house elves to ready the London Townhouse for occupancy. He often used it when the Wizengamot was in session and Draco was at Hogwarts. He trusted Severus to look out for his son, if he couldn't have a child with Severus at least the man could be a part of his son's life. He had been forced to play the part of a pureblood husband to the woman his father choose and to father a child with her. After Narcissa Black was pregnant he moved back out to his old rooms. He hired nannies and house elves to care for the child leaving little opportunities for the woman to be alone with the infant.

He floo called the Minister at home, asking him to meet him at his London residence in half an hour and to bring an Auror.

When the elves announced that the house was ready and that three bedrooms had been prepared for guests Lucius returned to his study.

Severus still had Potter's head in his lap and Draco dozing off against his side.

Lucius felt a pang of regret they looked like a family.

Severus smiled wanly at him when he entered.

"The Minster will meet us there." He picked up Draco; he wished he'd done this more often in the boy's life. "We should go, I'd like to avoid the woman."

Severus levitated Harry gently, before rising to take the boy back in his arms.

Together the two former Death Eaters flooed away from the Manor and the woman who was Lucius' wife.

XoooooX

Lucius put Draco to bed, tucking him in as he'd longed to do for the boy's entire life. "Sleep well son, we'll talk in the morning."

His brilliant son slept.

Lucius joined Severus in the next room; Treca was waiting in the Library for the Minister.

Severus sat on the edge of the bed, Harry looked so tiny and fragile. Why didn't he notice before? He tried to hate Harry because he was James' son, but he was Lily's too. She would be so ashamed of him…

"We'll find a way to protect him." Lucius promised.

There was a knock on the door.

"Enter."

"Minister for Magic Fudge and Senior Auror Shacklebolt." Treca announced.

Minister for Magic Cornelius Fudge looked tired and a bit annoyed, "What do you need Lucius? What was so urgent?"

"You heard about Potter becoming the unprecedented Fourth Champion?" Severus asked.

The pompous old fool nodded, "He found some way around the age line. Dumbledore promised he'd be questioned and punished."

"Did he mention that Potter was unconscious?" Lucius asked.

"He told me that Potter was pretending to faint to avoid punishment."

Severus sneered, "I saw Potter, he didn't just faint. Minister the poor boy was terrified and not of being caught for breaking a rule."

"Didn't you just last spring tell me,"

Severus scowled, "I know what I said. I was wrong; I saw what I wanted to see. I saw his father and not Harry. Minister, the boy has been starved and abused. I'm speaking up because of my friendship with his mother. A reputable healer has examined him and given us strict orders. The Nurse at Hogwarts barely gave him a glance. I can attest that she turns a blind eye to bullied and abused children." Pulling down the bedding and removing Harry's shirt to show Fudge the bruises.

Fudge's eyes bulged and his face turned purple, "Someone's been abusing our Savior?"

Severus nodded.

"Who is the Healer?" Shacklebolt asked.

"Healer Thaddeus Smythe, he is a private healer who is welcomed in the highest circles of Wizarding Society." Lucius replied.

"Who was to be Potter's guardian according to his parents' wishes?" Fudge asked.

Potter had been placed with his Muggle relatives before Fudge had been put in office.

Severus spoke up, "He was supposed to be placed with Black but since Black is an escaped killer,"

"No, no we can't place him in his custody. Oh dear, we, I mean the Ministry'll have to appoint a guardian. Who is someone that his parents would approve of?" Fudge paced.

Severus smirked, "Well, Lily would have approved of me but James would have been outraged at the very idea. I would recommend Remus Lupin; I believe my opinion of his character was skewed due to his association with Black and Potter in school. Lupin had a special relationship with Harry last year; I should have controlled my temper. Then perhaps, we wouldn't have a half-mad ex-Auror teaching students."

"Isn't Lupin a,"

"Yes Minister he is a werewolf but he is also one of the quietest and gentlest men I've every known. If Lily knew how I treated him last year she'd curse me straight into the Veil. I'll take responsibility and I promise he'll be taking the Wolfsbane potion the week of the full moon. I'll brew it myself."

"Lucius, are you in agreement with this mad scheme? A werewolf carrying for the Boy Who Lived? The press will eat me alive…"

"Do it for the Potters, I think it might be a very good idea if the Ministry silently investigated Harry's claims about Pettigrew and Black. If there is any truth to them you might find yourself terribly embarrassed. Pettigrew and Black's wands are at the Ministry; it should be very easy to determine which one was responsible for blowing up the street. Was the finger ever tested to see if it was cut off?" Lucius agreed with Severus, something wasn't right about any of this.

"Fine, but only for you Lucius." Fudge said throwing his hands into the air.

"Minister I would like to request a special annulment of my Bonding to Narcissa Black."

Severus stared at Lucius in shock.

"I would also like to file for an expedient Bonding License and the license for a blood adoption."

"Lucius what are you saying?"

"I am saying that I do not trust Narcissa Black near our Savior and I would like to keep her as far away from him and my son as magically possible." Lucius said stiffly.

"By annulling the Bonding, you make your son a bastard." Shacklebolt stammered in shock.

"Not if he is immediately blood adopted by my bondmate, which cements him once more as my heir."

"Why would a pureblood like you wish to annul a Bonding to a women with a pedigree like Narcissa Black?" Shacklebolt was stricken in amazement.

"Simple, I never wanted to be Bonded to her in the first place. Father wanted me to; he thought by joining a Dark Family like the Blacks I would be more agreeable to joining the Dark Lord's ranks. I was very much against the idea, it took an Imperius curse to make me do that as well as marry Ms. Black. Severus became a Death Eater because of me, he offered himself to Dumbledore as a spy to try to save the life of his friend and her son. Dumbledore let them die, something Severus never forgave him for." Lucius said, resting a hand on the younger man's shoulder.

"I'll sign the annulment and the other forms, the press will no doubt hear of it."

Lucius smirked, "I have no doubt."

Severus knew then that Lucius intended to finally Bond with him, he rest his hand over his stomach, thinking of the child he had lost before he had a chance to tell Lucius. He knew how much Lucius wanted to be a father, he had been too afraid to admit he lost it. He hadn't gotten pregnant since…

 

 

Chapter Text

Chapter Three

 

It took two days before the paperwork from the Minister arrived by owl.

Lucius had persuaded Severus to join him and Draco for breakfast, leaving Treca to watch the Potter boy.

Lucius accepted the stack of papers from the Ministry owl, smirking as he skimmed them. "By order of Cornelius Louis Fudge, Minister for Magic; the Bonding between Lucius Ramirus Malfoy and Narcissa Lætitia Black is hereby annulled. Effective this day November 3rd, 1994; signed, Cornelius Louis Fudge. I'm sorry it took so long Severus, I told you I'd make it happen." He skimmed the next decree before reading it aloud; "By order of Cornelius Louis Fudge, Minister for Magic; the child Draconis Lucius Malfoy, son of Lucius Ramirus Malfoy and Narcissa Lætitia Black is hereby allowed to be blood adopted by his sire and the future bondmate of Lord Malfoy." He smirked at his long-time companion, "I'm sure you have the blood adoption potion already brewed in storage and the incantation memorized."

Severus nodded; his adoration of Lucius' son was obvious he was sure of it. "I wish…"

 

*Flashback*

 

"Mr. Snape, Nurse Pomfrey informed me of your condition. I'm disappointed in you, a boy of your talents that would be foolish enough to get pregnant. A pregnant unbetrothed Fifth Year Slytherin is an embarrassment to this school, your House and the Prince Family." Dumbledore shook his head in dismay, "What are you going to do? You're too ill to even attend classes and you're falling behind. I've held off informing your parents. Will you tell me who the father is?"

Severus was still in shock, he'd barely known for a day that he was two months along. He hadn't even gotten a chance to tell Lucius yet; his lover was too busy with NEWT level classes. Lucius was being forced to be Bonded to that odious Narcissa Black. He'd been betrothed to her sister Andromeda from the cradle but since Andromeda ran off with two months ago to be Bonded to that Muggleborn Hufflepuff they'd hoped the impending Bonding would be called off. Instead, Lady Walpurga Black insisted that her youngest niece be joined to the Malfoy heir. The middle sister Bellatrix was already betrothed to the Lestrange heir, another well-known Dark Family and it wouldn't do to alienate that family. So Lucius' hopes to convince his father to allow him the choice of his own bondmate were crushed. Startled by the Headmaster's question, he stammered, "What?"

"Will you tell me dear boy," the Headmaster attempted to look fatherly, "…who the father is? Perhaps, we can arrange a hurried Bonding."

Lucius was already betrothed, that wouldn't work. He cried out, "No!" then he twisted his robes in an attempt to control himself, "I mean it won't do any good. My father wouldn't allow me to be joined with a man. You see; he's a Muggle sir. Headmaster, I,"

"Then we are left with one option: ending the pregnancy."

Severus collapsed in his chair, as if he was a puppet and someone cut all his strings, "No, Headmaster please..."

"You won't name the father. You have no interest in being Bonded. I'm not running a School for pregnant Unbonded witches and wizards. This is a school dedicated to education, and you can't even attend classes. What makes you think you can attend almost three more years and care for a child? We don't have childcare and you've made it quite clear your parents will not support you. What other option do you have?" the harsh words weren't tempered by the man's insincere smile.

Severus was alone, he had no options. Lily wasn't speaking to him; he lost his temper the other day at Potter and called her a Mudblood. Two weeks ago, Sirius Black the scion of that woman who was intent on ruining his life Walpurga Black had tricked him into following Remus and Nurse Pomfrey. He'd discovered that Prefect Remus Lupin was a werewolf when he wandered into the tunnel under the Whomping Willow; Potter had saved him from Lupin's attack. He owed him a life debt; he owed his tormentor a life-debt. He'd been sworn to secrecy after being threatened by the Headmaster.

He'd kept his word and stayed silent, after that night he started getting sick. He was sure he'd caught the flu; he'd gone to the infirmary for some medicine and ten minutes later he'd been told he was pregnant. He was in shock, but he wanted this baby. If he couldn't be Bonded to Lucius at least he'd been given a child. Now he was going to lose the baby too, he wondered why Lucius Ramirus Malfoy bothered with scum like him. The Black sisters Narcissa and Bellatrix called him that filthy little Halfblood. He wasn't even safe from being bullied in his own House. Lucius would graduate this spring and he would be alone. Lily wasn't speaking to him, hadn't for weeks. If he ever needed a best friend it was now.

"Mr. Snape!"

Severus closed his eyes, "A person like me doesn't deserve anything."

Dumbledore spoke the incantation.

Severus cried out in pain, his child was gone…

"Go lay down and take it easy my boy. Everything will look better in the morning."

 

*End Flashback*

 

Severus shivered.

Lucius touched his arm, "Are you alright?"

Severus attempted to smile, "I was just thinking, that's all."

"You look upset and unwell Unc,"

"Draco," Lucius interrupted his son, "I think it would be preferable if you called him Papa."

Draco grinned, "Papa, I like that." Severus Snape had been a constant part of his life as far are he could remember. His brow creased, "Can I call you Dad?"

Lucius beamed, "I'd like that." He glanced at Severus, "So when would you like to become Severus Malfoy?"

Severus shifted nervously, "Since you last mentioned that I was granted the family title seeing that I was the last of the Prince family,"

"Very well then, when would you like to become Severus Prince-Malfoy?" Lucius amended.

Severus forced himself to smile, "Whenever you want."

"Then I'll send for the solicitor. We can make a settlement for the woman and then draw up the papers." Lucius checked his watch, "Isn't that dratted healer late?"

Treca announced the healer.

Severus absently squeezed Lucius' hand, "I'll take him up."

Lucius stared after him confused.

Severus escorted Healer Smythe to the room where Harry was resting he hoped, "The boy still hasn't wakened. Should we be concerned?"

"He had a bit of a shock, plus he's had a dreadful life. He maybe too frightened to wake up. I would recommend a good Mind Healer as soon as he wakes. The best I know is Ted Tonks."

Severus stiffened, "Tonks?" that was the name of that Muggleborn Hufflepuff who eloped with Andromeda Black…

"He married the eldest Black sister, disowned she was. Weren't you in the same House at Hogwarts?"

Severus nodded, "She was in Lucius' year." He reached out with a shaking hand to stop the healer, "After you examine Harry, can I ask you a favor?"

"Of course." the man dipped his head.

Severus watched on as the healer examined Harry.

"Just keep casting those potions into his stomach until he wakes. Then get him to eat something light like broth or oatmeal." The healer turned to the other man. "What did you need?"

Severus swallowed, "You see, this is very embarrassing to admit but when I was a Fifth Year I got pregnant. It was Lucius'; I didn't get a chance to tell him. I only knew for about a day. He was already in the middle of planning a Bonding to Narcissa Black at the time. I was pressured into an abortion, because I was very sick. I could hardly leave my bed when the Headmaster summoned me to his office. We've been intimate since but I've never gotten pregnant again."

The healer nodded, "Do you know what incantation he used?"

Severus shook his head, "It was too traumatic, I wanted my baby very much but the Headmaster wouldn't allow me to attend while pregnant if I wasn't bonded or at least betrothed. I couldn't have the child at home because I had an abusive Muggle father."

The healer cast a few spells and then grew angry, "How dare he! That spell's illegal!"

Severus felt cold all over, "What spell?"

"Your body bears the trace of an illegal abortion spell. It not only ends the pregnancy but renders the bearer infertile."

Severus fainted.

 

XoooooX

 

Lucius was about to floo call his solicitor when Treca popped into the study.

"Master! The Healer be calling you. It's Master Severus."

Lucius forgot all about his floo call and tore upstairs.

Throwing open the door to Severus' room, "What happened?"

"I gave him some very bad news and he fainted, Lord Malfoy."

"He is my intended, you will tell me." Lucius snapped.

"Until he permits me I cannot," knowing full well that the killing of a future heir should be reported to the head of that family.

"Was it about Harry?"

Healer Smythe shook his head, "No, it was about himself. He will be very upset when he wakes, you must not be angry with him. He was young and scared; he was very alone. He never foresaw this outcome. You will be filing a suit when he informs you, I'm sure."

"What are you talking about?" Lucius stormed.

"I'm torn between healer-patient privilege and what I should inform you of as Head of the Malfoy family." The Malfoy healer paced.

Irritated, Lucius sat on the bed next to Severus, "Eneverate." Casting the spell that would force his lover to consciousness before the healer could stop him.

Severus' eyes blinked, he sat Lucius' worried face and turned away. "I can't talk to you right now."

"Then tell Smythe he can talk to me. I have to understand. We're supposed to be Bonded." Lucius protested.

Severus couldn't look at him, "We can't be Bonded. I can't say it."

"Potions Master Snape was forced in school to have an abortion."

Lucius shook with fury, "Someone killed my child? My first born?"

"He was intimidated, he was so ill he couldn't attend classes. You were already going to be Bonded to Ms. Black so he couldn't have,"

Lucius turned Severus to face him, "If you were pregnant it would have voided the betrothal. Didn't you know that? Father would have had to let us be Bonded. No Malfoy is ever born a bastard."

Severus sobbed, keening, "I wanted my baby."

"Lord Malfoy, the spell was illegal."

Lucius' silver eyes flashed, "Why?"

"Because, it's so powerful it makes those it's cast on infertile."

Lucius pulled Severus into his arms, "I'll ruin him. No one kills a Malfoy and avoids punishment. I'll fix this; you're still going to be Severus Prince-Malfoy. I'll find some way to reverse the spell."

The healer left them.

 

XoooooX

 

Draco heard his father run up stairs, he waited a bit and went up to check on Potter. Since Potter collapsed, he couldn't help thinking about him. He had been present when Uncle Sev, no Papa showed Dad the tiny Gryffindor's scars. He was furious, he and Harry might have been called school rivals and they fought more often then were pleasant to one another. Draco had been lucky to not really suffer any serious punishment. His mother had wanted to take away his potions lab but dad had told him that his punishment was that he was going to be locked out of the lab until he was well and only allowed inside with his godfather present until he could be trusted not to do something so foolish. Mother was furious, ranting and raving how he should be beaten for breaking rules. They weren't even her rules, they were Severus' rules and the lab had been a gift from his godfather and soon to be papa.

He hadn't really noticed the relationship between his father and his godfather, he was rarely alone with them to watch them interact. But seeing his godfather plead with his father to do something because of Harry and how easily they acted like they were a couple he was okay with it. His soon to be Papa had taught him and loved him, his dad gave him lots of gifts and rarely punished him, protecting him from his mother's wrath.

He made his way into Harry's room to find the boy was still unconscious. Draco was worried; it would be two nights since he fainted come dinner. His friends would laugh at him for worrying about Potter, but he couldn't help it. Come to think about it, the one who instigated all their fights were either himself or Weasley. He'd have to work on that, he got the feeling Harry spooked easily and didn't like to have his friends insulted. So what if Weasley grew up in a barn or Granger was a Muggleborn? He was lucky his soon to be Papa hadn't hear the things he'd said, he was sure he'd have been punished…

Draco sat on the chair beside the bed; he'd learn to curb his tongue. He wasn't going to let anyone upset the tiny Gryffindor. He hoped dad won, he wanted Harry safe from the people who hurt him.

 

 

Chapter Text

Chapter Four

 

It took Severus a few hours to calm down; he still was upset that his forced abortion had left him infertile. He HATED Dumbledore for killing his baby and destroying any hope for continuing the Prince line. He hadn't forgiven the old man for letting Lily die or sending her son to live with Petunia, he should have fought against it. Severus was calmer by the time the Solicitor arrived to take the legal documents that bonded him to Lucius and made Draco his son.

They did the simplest 'ceremony' making him Prince-Malfoy but his heart was broken, how could Lucius not hate him for killing their child? Lucius was angry with Dumbledore and he was out for blood. He blood adopted Draco in the Malfoy's London house. He sat there twisting his ring after kicking Draco out to do something besides sit at Harry's bedside.

His son was very much like his father; beneath his arrogance was a protective young man who hated to see anyone hurt. Severus wondered if Draco might…

He shook his head; he shouldn't consider such things yet.

XoooooX

Harry finally woke, to find himself in a strange room.

"I wondered when you'd wake, you've slept nearly two days."

Harry tried to sit up only to gently be made to stay down.

"Don't get up too fast, rest a bit."

"What about,"

"School? The Board of Governors and the Minister of Magic have excused you from classes. Dumbledore is quite upset but Fudge for once in his life is being stubborn and for the right reasons." Severus leaned over to see if he had a fever.

"Snape!"

"Actually, it's Prince-Malfoy but that's another story. You fainted, do you remember that?" Severus asked.

"Yes, something about my name coming out of the Goblet of Fire." Harry said shivering.

"We're trying to get you out of that but they keep saying it's a magical contract. I've alienated the headmaster for good now. He's angry with me for taking you out of the castle. You weren't being treated properly and I was worried for you, especially when I saw your scars."

Harry paled.

Severus unbuttoned his robe; removing his own glamour, "See? You aren't the only Halfblood wizard to come from an abusive home. I'd like to apologize to you for how I behaved since you started at Hogwarts. I let my hatred of your father cloud my judgment; your mother would be very disappointed in me. I should have trusted you with Black but I hated him so much. I thought I put all behind me but when I had a chance to hurt him I took it."

"You knew my parents?" Harry asked in a whisper.

Severus smiled, "Lily Evans was my first friend. We met as children; I was the first person to tell her she was a witch. Lily was very talented; we were inseparable almost like siblings. Her older sister Petunia hated us because we could do things she couldn't. We were always together, I was trying to escape my abusive parents and Lily was trying to avoid her sister. Your father hated me; I think he was mostly jealous because he liked Lily from the start and she wouldn't give him the time of day because he wasn't nice to me. I never really liked James Potter, but he and I made a sort of peace and Lily ended up falling in love with him. You're safe now; Lucius is trying to get you away from Petunia. We're trying to locate Remus Lupin, he's been appointed as your guardian because of his friendship with your parents."

"I don't have to go back?" Harry asked.

Severus smiled, summoning a set of potions Harry was supposed to take, "Here, these will help. If you feel up to it we can join Lucius and Draco for lunch."

Harry's eyes widened, "Draco?" he stammered.

"Yes it seems that both Malfoys have a soft spot for abused teenagers. If it weren't for Lucius and Lily I don't know how I'd have survived. Granger and Weasley don't know do they?" Severus asked handing the boy the potions and helping him sit up.

Harry took the potions drinking them without complaint but making a face, "No. Ron knows they locked me in my room; they had to tie a rope to the bars and rip them out of the window using the flying Ford Anglia. The twins helped by retrieving my trunk from the cupboard under the stairs by picking the lock."

"I'm sorry I didn't know sooner. Are you feeling well enough to come attempt lunch? You've missed too many meals already, I can have Treca bring a tray."

Harry shook his head whispering, "I'll come. I don't want to cause trouble."

Severus helped the boy out of bed.

"Why are you being so nice? You're always yelling at me because I'm bad."

Severus shook his head, helping the tiny teen to the door, "You're not bad. I was just being stubborn. Like when you tried to tell me that Black was innocent and I wouldn't listen."

"Okay." Harry wasn't sure he believed him; it was a bit unnerving to have Mr. Snape being so nice…

XoooooX

"So Dad," Draco asked, "…when do I have to go back to school?"

"Soon, I thought you could use some time to get used to have Severus as your papa." Lucius was still furious that Dumbledore had killed his first conceived child but then he wouldn't have Draco. He was even more irate that the abortion spell was illegal and made his Severus infertile, not that he would tell his son any of this at present.

Draco looked up hearing approaching footsteps to see his papa helping Harry, "He's awake."

Harry stiffened seeing the two Malfoys, even though Snape had said he was a Prince-Malfoy now, it hadn't really sunk in, "Malfoy? What are you doing here?"

Lucius gestured for Harry to take a seat beside Draco, across the table from him, "You've been in my care since Severus took you away from the castle."

"Why would he do that? I thought he hated me,"

Severus winced, "Because I was once a battered boy myself, I had to treat my own wounds. I never had a doctor growing up and Nurse Pomfrey wouldn't treat the injuries I sustained when I was bullied at school."

Harry nodded, "I know the feeling, it was called, 'Harry-Hunting.'"

Draco couldn't believe it, that was a horrible sounding game.

"Black called it, 'Snivellius-baiting' in my case."

"Sirius? No wonder you hated him." Harry whispered, "Did Mr. Lupin play it too?"

Severus shook his head, "No, but I resented him because he became a prefect and still wouldn't stop it."

Harry's eyes narrowed, "Malfoy said once his father was Head Boy, why didn't,"

Severus waved his hand, "No one really knew we were seeing one another, I made Lucius ignore it unless it happened right in front of him."

"Still made me furious," Lucius grumbled, "…at least Evans tried to stop it."

"Bit embarrassing being saved by a girl," Severus countered, "…but she was a good friend."

"So why am I here?" Harry asked softly.

"We saw how terrified you were when your name was called." Draco answered, "I saw you faint and felt your Glamour break."

"I was the one who picked you up and took you to the infirmary." Severus said quietly, "I felt your scars. Everyone immediately assumed you cheated and fainted to avoid punishment. Pomfrey barely examined you at all, I was angry about that and worried. Then Draco came and we decided to take you to Lucius. I showed him your scars knowing it would upset him and convince him to help."

"Admit it papa, you begged him." Draco said pouring himself some pumpkin juice.

Severus' sallow face turned a bit pink, "Draco!"

"It's true. I did help, I called our private healer and he gave you a proper examination. He told us you had to eat often and what potions you needed."

"He even recommended a Mind Healer to help with your recovery" Severus muttered, "He said Ted Tonks was the best."

"Andromeda's Muggleborn Hufflepuff of a bondmate?' Lucius asked a bit shocked.

The potions master nodded, "The very same. Lucius also called an Auror to see your wounds and the Minister for Magic."

Harry yelped, folding in on himself, "You told? But,"

Draco snapped, "Do you want to return to your abusive Muggle relatives?"

Harry whispered, frightened, "No…"

"Draco, do watch that tone, you're scaring him." Lucius admonished gently.

Draco hung his head, "Sorry."

"As we were saying, we informed the Minister to try to get you out of the tournament. We've started paperwork to get you away from Petunia, since Sirius was your godfather but he is currently a fugitive so he isn't exactly going to be handed custody. I can't have custody or rather it wouldn't be seemly because your father didn't like me. So I recommended Remus, sort of an apology for losing my temper and threating to out him to the parents as a werewolf." Severus said quietly.

Harry whispered, "That was very mean, it meant that Mr. Lupin had to go away."

Severus sighed, "It was very wrong of me, that's why I thought he would make a decent guardian for you. He likes you and cares about your education, I promise that Lupin will receive his potion so he won't transform and act all scary again."

Harry shivered, "That was really scary, if it weren't for Sirius we would have all been hurt." He remembered last year when Dumbledore and Hermione bullied him into agreeing to us the timeturner to save Sirius and Buckbeak. He liked Buckbeak until he attacked Malfoy. Hagrid had really scary pets.

Lucius smiled at the boy, "It's okay to eat, the healer said to eat as much as you can. Draco will bring you a snack in a little while so you can eat something while you study. What do you think would be a good snack?"

Harry thought back to Dudley's idea of a snack, he said weakly, "Cake?"

Draco grinned, "What kind of cake?"

"Um…white cake with lots of frosting and cider?"

Draco chuckled, "Harry, you're my new best friend."

Severus snorted, "Isn't that what Goyle and Crabbe think a snack is?'

Draco shook his head, "No, they think that's dessert. They think a quarter of Honeydukes is a snack." He smirked.

That sent them all off into fits of laughter.

Harry was a bit surprised he was enjoying himself, this was Professor Snape who picked on him every day and Malfoys- all Slytherins. Didn't Ron and Hagrid say that Slytherins were all Dark Wizards? He was so confused…

Lucius, Severus and Draco gently prodded Harry to eat.

Harry was soon so full he was falling asleep at the table, it had been a while since he had eaten and his stomach shrunk again.

Lucius and Draco were soon confused, Draco was sure he'd seen Harry eat more at the Gryffindor table. The younger Malfoy was about to make a stinging comment.

Severus saw the crackle of fury in his son's eyes, "Harry, it's quite alright. I can tell you're full. The problem with being starved is your stomach shrinks."

Draco flush in embarrassment, thankful that his papa kept him from embarrassing himself and hurting Harry's feelings.

"Draco, why don't you take Harry up to his room? Then go copy your homework assignments so he can do his later."

Draco nodded; Harry was already two days behind…

 

 


Chapter Text

Chapter Five

 

It was the day after Harry woke up, when a very disgruntled Remus Lupin was delivered to the London house by an Auror.

John Dawlish, Lucius was sure not his father 'Hawk' Dawlish. He waved his hand dismissively, "Thank you Auror. That will be all. Do pass along our gratitude to Head Auror Scrimgour and Senior Auror Shacklebolt."

The Auror bowed and seemed happy to escape.

Remus Lupin crossed his arms, "Lord Malfoy, I would very much like it explained why I was arrested on sight."

Lucius laughed, "Lucius please, you weren't arrested. But an order was sent out by Minister Fudge's office to retrieve you."

Remus was not amused, "Why? It's bad enough I can't get a job because the whole Wizarding World knows I resigned under suspicious circimstances."

"I'll leave the explanation to Severus, I had Treca under orders to inform him when you arrived." Lucius smiled.

Severus swept in, looking healthier and wearing more flattering robes. "Lupin! Please sit down; we have a lot to discuss. I suppose the Auror didn't see fit to inform you of anything."

Remus sighed, "No he didn't. Don't you think you caused enough trouble?"

Severus smirked, "No, I'm about to cause a whole lot more. I have a feeling that Black is going to want to eviscerate me."

"Now why would that be?" Remus asked sinking into a chair, he was actually exhausted not that he would admit it.

"Simple, because you Remus Lupin are now the legal guardian of one Harry Potter." Severus drawled.

Remus sputtered, "What?"

"It came to my shocked attention that that Harry was in Petunia's care and he was being beaten within an inch of his life and starved practically to death." Severus deliberately phrased the situation that way knowing it would make the werewolf highly protective of their childhood friends' son.

"Petunia…" the lycanthrope sputtered, "…abused Harry?"

"We wondered why Harry was so desperate to have Sirius pardoned, he wanted to get away from that horse-faced magic hating bint." Severus smirked, "I have since apologized for my behavior over the last few years to Harry. I thought that you would enjoy being guardian to Potter's son."

Remus stammered, "Why of course, he's a good kid. Nothing really like his dad."

"He's upstairs doing make up work with Draco."

"I thought they hated each other." Remus blinked.

"They might have, until the Malfoy protective streak reared it's head." Severus smirked.

"Snape,"

"It's Prince-Malfoy," Severus corrected.

Remus stared, jaw dropped, "What?"

Lucius squeezed Severus' hand, "You heard him; he is my bondmate."

"You divorced,"

Lucius waved his hand, "Malfoys don't divorce, the Bonding contract between the woman and I was annulled by Minister Fudge. Severus Blood-adopted Draco so he is still my heir. If you wish to see your charge,"

"Yes, yes of course." Remus was dumbfounded. Snape was Bonded to Lord Malfoy, he'd adopted Draco and he'd gotten him custody of Harry? Harry was abused? "Does Dum,"

"Don't speak that man's name in my house, nor my presence." Lucius thundered, "We haven't seen fit to inform him of anything. I request that at this point you do the same. Our personal healer who has been entirely honest about his health is caring for Harry and he is in desperate need of a Mind Healer. I am trying to get Harry out of a magical contract."

Remus stared at him, "What magical contract?"

"Where have you been under a rock? Harry's name came out of the Goblet of Fire. At present he is magically bound to participate as a Champion."

Remus snapped, "The Goblet of Fire? That's the Triwizard Tournament. It's death toll,"

"We know," Severus interrupted. "Everyone besides us, is convinced that Harry cheated somehow to get his name in it. Draco and I saw Harry's reaction to his name being read, he was terrified. The accusing whispers and angry, malicious glares frightened him so much when he got up to approach the head table, he passed out. No one even tried to help him until I picked him up. Pomfrey didn't even really examine him, she said he was faking."

"Harry fainted? She said he was faking? Harry's not a faker, did she say that after his soul was nearly sucked out by a Dementor?"

Severus shook his head, "I don't think so but I was too busy acting like a child at that point. Remus, he's been taking the Dreamless Sleep Potion so often the Healer said it's losing its potency."

Remus covered his face in his hands, "Why didn't I realize,"

"None of us did. He's such a nice boy that we wouldn't suspect he was suffering. He's always smiling and laughing, not like me. I was always brooding and sulking." Severus interrupted. "Come on, I know Harry will be pleased to see you. Draco did mention once that you were the only Defense Teacher who knew anything."

Remus was perversely pleased that a Malfoy considered him intelligent.

Lucius waved them on, "Go ahead and see the boys, I have papers to deal with." He wondered briefly if anyone had been mucking about in the Potter vaults. He had documentation from the ministry listing Remus as Harry's legal guardian and if they pulled Black's will he was willing to be that Remus' name would be on it.

XoooooX

Draco lay on the bed next to Harry, talking him through the History of Magic assignment.

Harry listened intently; Draco Malfoy wasn't acting like a prat. He wasn't lecturing like Hermione or Percy. The Prince of Slytherin was really good at explaining a perpetually boring subject. He'd even been nice enough to help him with his Potions assignment for the Substitute Professor.

Draco gently corrected Harry's manner of holding a quill sighing, "Not meaning to be insulting but having a Muggleborn and Weasley as your friends didn't help you learn how to hold a wand properly or how to correctly write with a quill."

The way the Slytherin worded that didn't seem at all insulting so Harry let it go. He was still surprised one that Draco hadn't said one nasty remark about fainting. Last year after Draco Malfoy and his friends found out about him fainting because of Dementors they teased him incessantly.

"Harry? Harry did you hear what I said about the 1782 International Confederation of Wizards?"

Harry blushed shaking his head. "Sorry. I was just thinking how you hadn't made fun of me for fainting."

"Did you want me to? Because I didn't see the point, you were terrified. It was like you thought the entire Great Hall was going to attack you."

Harry closed his eyes, "They looked angry enough…"

The bedroom door opened.

Draco looked over his shoulder and saw his papa and Professor Lupin, "Good Afternoon papa. Hello professor."

Remus blinked, no snarky remark about his shabby robes? He said quickly, "Hello Malfoy. Harry?"

Harry rolled over and grinned, "Professor Lupin!"

Severus chuckled, "Minister Fudge had his Aurors looking all over for him. He's your new guardian."

Harry asked quietly, "I don't have to go to the Dursleys?"

Remus knelt and held open his arms, "Not as long as I'm your guardian. I have you to thank for this Severus. If the Ministry checked Sirius' will he said if James and Lily predeceased him and Harry was still underage he wanted me to take care of Harry."

Severus snorted, "I guess I made the right choice in guardian. Draco, I think the make up work can wait awhile. Let's leave Lupin and Harry alone for a bit."

Draco frowned packing up the books and rolling up the parchment.

Harry patted the empty bed.

"You're not scared of me?" Remus asked quietly.

Harry shook his head; "You're not a werewolf right now. Besides, you forgot your potion right?"

Remus knew he was referring to the night he and Sirius were convinced not to kill Peter for betraying James and Lily. "I'm sorry I scared you."

"I just wish I didn't have to keep running away from you all night."

Remus was a bit confused, "What?"

"Dumbledore convinced Hermione to use her timeturner and drag me along. Ron had a broken leg so he couldn't come. We had to rescue Sirius and Buckbeak, I didn't want Sirius to be Kissed so I helped him." He shifted nervously, "I don't like Sirius much. He's scary."

"Did you want to live with him when he asked?"

Harry stared at his lap, "Anywhere has to be better then the Dursleys."

"Have the Malfoys been treating you well?" Remus had to know, he didn't really trust any of them.

Harry nodded, "They had me seen by a healer who realized I was malnourished, something Madam Pomfrey never did. I was using a Glamour before, it used so much of my magic. Professor S…I mean Prince-Malfoy mentioned it could be why I had such trouble with Transfiguration and Charms sometimes. Draco said it's 'cause I don't hold my wand right and I stumble over the incantations."

"So how are you coming in Defense? Did Dumbledore hire a decent Professor to take my place?" Remus was curious how the Headmaster filled his hastily vacated position.

"Professor Moody is…scary." Harry gulped. "He…showed us the unforgivable curses. Neville really was upset when he showed us the Cruciatus Curse. Professor Moody thought it was all well and wonderful when he cast the Imperius Curse on me and I fought,"

Remus shook with anger, "Moody used an Unforgivable? On you?"

Harry scooted away, "He cast it on everyone, he said we weren't supposed to be learning about those curses until later but Dumbledore gave him special permission."

Remus kissed his hair and stormed out.

XoooooX

Lucius and Severus were reading and sipping firewhiskey with Remus stormed in.

"Malfoy!"

Both men glanced up, "Yes."

"Lucius Malfoy!"

Lucius sighed, "Yes Lupin?"

"Did you know Dumbledore hired Mad-eye Moody? That washed up crazy ex-Auror was casting Unforgivables on children! He used the Imperius on Harry!"

Lucius glanced at Severus.

Severus held up his hands in innocence, "Draco didn't tell me."

Lucius was annoyed, "He should have mentioned something like that. I kept that woman away from my son to avoid him being taught those curses. The Black family had a history of teaching the children from an early age using house elves as victims."

"So did the Malfoys, you told me that." Severus said sipping his Firewhiskey.

"We also used the Cruciatus as punishment, because unlike beating it leaves no marks." Lucius glared, "I never used either on Draco. We grounded him from the potions lab, he was forbidden to ride his horse or his pony. Sometimes we took away his broom but he was a rather obedient boy but spoilt."

"Surely as a Hogwarts Governor you have a problem with teaching Fourth Years Unforgivable Curses!" Remus scowled.

Lucius sighed, "Of course I do."

"Then insist that Moody be removed! I don't think any parent would be pleased they were being taught that."

Lucius summoned a house elf and sent for Draco.

The young Prince of Slytherin arrived, "Yes Dad?"

"What exactly happened when Moody taught you about the Unforgivable Curses?"

Draco sat in an armchair, "He had three spiders; he used engorgio to make them larger. Then he cast the Imperius on it, he made it tap dance and do back flips. Some of the students thought it was funny until Moody mentioned it could have been them. He cast the Curse on every one of us. I was one of the only ones it didn't work on." He smirked, "I'm too stubborn. I heard Harry broke his kneecaps, trying not to jump and jump at the same time." He frowned, "He didn't even cry. Even when he crashed and broke his arm he didn't cry. When he was blown off his broom last year he didn't cry either…"

Severus nodded, "I remember, growing back bones hurts but he didn't even whimper."

Remus sighed, "He should know it's okay to cry when it hurts."

Severus shook his head, "Crying gives an abuser or a bully too much power, staying stoic is the only way to have some control."

Remus' eyes narrowed, "How would you know?"

Lucius snapped, "Severus wouldn't hurt a child!"

"I can fight my own battles Lucius," Severus glared, "My father beat me and my mother slapped me around. She used to say I ruined her life. Like it was my fault I was born." He winced, thinking about his child that wasn't born. Because he allowed Dumbledore to kill his baby he was left infertile. A rather cruel karmic result…

Remus gasped, "I'm sorry. If I'd known,"

"I didn't want anyone to know. Lily knew because she helped patch me up sometimes and Lucius knew because I had nightmares. I knew prolonged use of the Dreamless Sleep potion weakens its effectiveness. Something Harry hasn't realized yet, then again he's a bit slow at potions,"

"He's actually quite bright. You just frighten him into making mistakes!" Draco protested, "I bet that is Longbottom's problem too. As for Ronald Weasley, he may just be an imbicle."

"If it weren't for Granger, Weasley wouldn't pass a thing."

"I think Harry' other marks are because Weasley distracts him and Granger gives him bad advice." Draco stated his opinion.

Remus was surprised, "Why do you think that?"

"Because he catches on quick when he listens and his wand work is disgraceful because he listened to a Mudblood rather then Professor Flitwick."

Severus shifted nervously, "I remember a certain Fifth Year taking a Muggle-raised Halfblood to task for his disgraceful wand work years ago. Apparently, the entire house thought it was funny and didn't correct him. The Halfblood was nice enough to correct his Muggleborn best friend and together they had the highest marks in their year."

Remus tilted his head, "I remember you correcting Lily's wand work that year, James insisted on spying on you too. Said a snake shouldn't be trusted with a lioness."

Lucius scoffed, "Sometimes the fights Severus said they had reminded me more of brother and sister fights then best friend fights."

Remus raised an eyebrow, "How would you know? You're an only child same as us."

Lucius chuckled, "That's the problem with Arranged Bondings, if the couple in question don't like one another they stop sharing a bed as soon as a child is conceived. Sometimes if the first is a heiress rather then an heir they may try again. I was only too happy that Narcissa had a son so I could have a bed to myself."

Severus snorted, "You're only saying that because the room I had when I visited had a secret passage to your room."

"Of course, it was the mistress' room. It was quite common for the master of the house to have a mistress or at least a secondary bedmate to their legal spouse."

"I never would have pegged Lucius Malfoy as a cheater."

"Lucius isn't a cheater," Severus protested hotly, "We were together before Narcissa was even betrothed to him!"

"So," Remus teased, "You were cheating on him then Lucius."

Lucius sneered, "Once. I pumped the woman so full of Fertility charms and potions so it only took once but I waited until she was of age and graduated."

Draco was a bit surprised how quickly the three adults got to being comfortable to tease one another. He snorted, "If you don't need me, I'm going back upstairs to study with Harry."

"Bring him a dish of peach cobbler, he needs to eat." Severus reminded him gently.

Draco rolled his eyes, "And a nutrition potion I know."

Remus turned to Lucius once Draco was gone, "Are you going to continue to let Moody teach? He's obviously crazy."

"I think we have more pressing matters." Lucius retorted.

"Like what?" Remus asked incensed that something was more important then someone casting Unforgivables on children.

Severus replied first, "The Tournament, Harry being a Champion. Dumbledore keeps sending Howlers demanding we bring him back because they have instruct all the Champions together. We're trying to get him out of it but they keep claiming it's a magical contract and because Harry entered himself he's bound by it."

"Harry wouldn't," Remus protested.

"I know; I was there. They all assumed he entered himself and cheated somehow. James' son he maybe but he takes after Lily more, he's no cheater." Severus insisted.

"James wasn't a cheater either!" Remus snarled.

"I didn't say he was, I just said he didn't have much in common with James other then looks."

Lucius held up his hands, "No arguing, you'll upset Harry. Do yourselves a favor, grow up and act like adults."

Remus growled, "Fine!"

Severus shrugged.

"Now we have to make plans. We're running out of time. Remus, first thing in the morning; take the letter from the Ministry to Gringotts. Demand to see the wills belonging to the Potters and Black. Request that the goblins do a through inventory of all things belonging to Harry." Lucius smirked, "Until another guardian is named or Harry comes of age, you should be in possession of his vault keys."

Remus stared at him, "I still don't know why you're doing this. You were a Death Eater."

"Reluctant remember? My father and Narcissa made sure I became one, they also ensured that I became one of his most trusted servants. Much to my own dismay."

"What about you Severus, why are you helping Harry?" Remus was curious

"I never wanted to be a Death Eater in the first place, I only joined up so Lucius had one person he trusted completely who could watch his back. With people like Bellatrix around you needed someone to watch your back. She never trusted either of us and she's dangerously loyal to the Dark Lord." Severus said with a shrug. "Besides, I owe you for what I did last year and Harry needs someone who will fight for him and who better then a werewolf who no doubt sees him as part of his pack?"

Remus chuckled, "Pack? I guess he is. James was sort of the alpha of my pack, which would have made Lily alpha female and Sirius was beta." His eyes narrowed, "You know Harry was telling the truth don't you? That Sirius was framed?"

Lucius sighed, "Fudge is looking into it. I mentioned it might be a good idea to reexamine the case. If it had been poorly handled it would be best to come out looking like he was a good Minister by being interested in the truth. After all, all we need to do is see which wand blew up the street right?"

"Still a bit shocked you'd fight for someone who made your bondmate's school life miserable." Remus muttered.

"Maybe I feel sorry for him being betrothed to the woman from the cradle. I'm a bit proud of him doing what I was too afraid to do. He ran away to avoid being part of his Dark Family, no doubt they would have tried to make him join the ranks of the Death Eaters too." Lucius shrugged.

"When it's safe for Sirius to come home and turn himself in I'll post an article in the Daily Prophet. If I word it just right he'll come right away."

"Some sort of secret Marauder code?" Severus half-sneered.

"I haven't seen him since he escaped Flitwick's office, Ms. Granger told me he got away." Remus shrugged, "I'd say something like: Padfoot, Moony and Prongslet miss you please come home. If I sign it as the name of the place to come home to he'll know. When I was living amoung the werewolves, James left a note like that so I'd know to come back when he found out they were expecting and when it got close to the birth."

"You're welcome to stay here until Harry is given a clean bill of health from his healer to return to school." Lucius said pleasantly, "We have a fourth bedroom prepared. Severus has been sharing my room so it's not been used."

"I know you've had your struggles but I'm glad you're still together."

"How come you're perpetually single Lupin?"

Remus looked away, "Only been interested in two people, neither ever looked at me. One was too busy shagging every girl in sight and the other, was practically betrothed. Besides," giving them a sad smile, "…who'd want to be with a werewolf anyway?"

"Same type of person who'd chance being with a Veela." Lucius chuckled.

Severus glared, "I thought we weren't telling anyone that."

Remus blinked, "You're a Veela?"

Lucius nodded, "It skipped father, he tried to arrange a bonding with someone not my mate."

"So Severus is,"

"His mate, it was very painful for both of us when he had to sleep with the woman." The Potions Master admitted bitterly.

"Sadly, I think most of Sirius' issues is being born a Black made him pretty crazy and warped. Only Andromeda seemed above being crazy."

"They didn't call her the Queen of Slytherin for no reason. That was one of the reasons we were expected to be Bonded, the Queen and the Prince of Slytherin seemed like a good match. Our tastes couldn't be more different."

Remus was left with a lot to think about, how in Godric's name was he going to manage to stay in a house with SEVERUS? He knew from living with werewolves the consequences of touching another's mate, he would have to make sure that Lucius didn't think he was going to force the potions master…

 

 

Chapter Text

Chapter Six

 

Lucius left for the Ministry to search the archives for instances of people unfairly trapped in magical contracts to see if any of them managed to get out. If he had specific instances to cite and could prove Harry didn't enter himself, which he was sure he could then they might be able to get the boy out of it.

XoooooX

Severus was overseeing Harry and Draco's make up work and planned to have Draco 'tutor' the tiny Gryffindor in brewing. He summoned Treca and insisted she bring over his lab from Spinners' End and arrange it exactly the same in one of the rooms in the cellar.

XoooooX

Staying at Malfoy's London house wasn't so bad; Remus hadn't eaten so well since Hogwarts.

Armed with his letter awarding guardianship of Harry, he exited the floo in Diagon Alley.

The huge imposing white structure of Gringotts Bank dwarfed all the surrounding building.

When he entered and walked to the counter he was greeted.

"Mr. Lupin, it's been a long time since you were here. It's Griphook."

"Aw yes, the one who showed Sirius the will from his uncle, which gave him his Vault and a house." Remus said politely.

"How can we help you Mr. Lupin?" Griphook asked gruffly.

"You see I've been appointed Harry's legal guardian. Lord Malfoy thought my first order of business was to ask you to pull Sirius and the Potter's will. My second was to ask for a complete inventory of all vaults that belong to Harry."

Griphook frowned, "All Black holdings reverted to Sirius Black when his family all perished it is custom."

"Sirius is currently on the run from Magical Law Enforcement since his escape Azkaban. According to Wizarding Law he can't use it, it would be best to transfer his property to his heir. We don't want a repeat of what happened when the Ministry possessed the Dumbledore properties." Remus bowed, staying on the right side of a goblin was difficult. He needed all the support he could, "Think of me as an executor, I don't have complete control I just insure that his inheritance stays intact until he comes of age."

"Very well, I will pull the Potters and Sirius Black's wills. Come with me."

Remus followed the goblin.

Griphook led him into a private room, "Wait here. I'll retrieve the wills. Ministry and their overreaching policies, not bothering to check wills."

Remus wisely held his tongue, Severus- he couldn't rightly call him Snape anymore considering the man was Bonded to Lucius Malfoy and had officially accepted his place as heir to the Prince family. He wished, no, Severus had already given his heart to Lucius when his wolf wanted him for a mate. It was his cowardice that prevented him from pursuing Snape, since James and Sirius disliked him immensely. Beside, he doubt very much he'd win in a duel against Lucius Malfoy and Severus already made his choice.

Griphook returned with too musty parchments, "Not to leave Gringotts, may copy."

Remus accepted the wills nodding, sitting at the desk in the room ignoring the goblin's penetrating eyes.

'The Last Will and Testament of James Charlus Potter,

I leave all my worldly possessions to my wife Lily who with my best friend Sirius Black are to act as custodians of my estate until our son Harry comes of age.

At which time I will our house in Godric's Hollow to Lily and the rest of the Potter properties revert to Harry.

I leave Vault # 612 for Lily to spend as she wishes for the remainder of her life, which her ministry pay has been deposited along with other monies I have added since we were Bonded.

To Remus Lupin, my good friend I leave two thousand Galleons.

To Peter Pettigrew, I leave the same.

Lastly I leave Harry my cloak, which is to come into his possession when he goes to Hogwarts.

James Charlus Potter, 25th Lord Potter'

Shaking his head Remus sighed, James was a good sort, even leaving something for Peter. He'd do the honorable thing; he'd give it to Peter's mother since he was declared dead. No need to upset her by telling her that her son was alive, had betrayed his friends, become a Death Eater or allowed an innocent friend to be sent to Azkaban.

Opening Lily's will was hard, they'd become friends due to being prefects together though she was very upset when he wouldn't punish Sirius and James for their treatment of Severus.

'The Last Will and Testament of Lily Diane Potter nee Evans,

I leave my golden locket from my mother to my son Harry.

I leave my books on Charms to my friend Remus Lupin, along with all my notes on my experiments. I trust he will publish my research jointly.

I leave my books on potions and the contents of my lap to my oldest and dearest friend Severus Snape. I hope he knows how much he means to me.

If James and I perish before Harry is of age, it is my wish that Sirius befriend Severus because I want them both to look after my son.

If anything happens to Sirius, then Remus Lupin is named guardian of Harry. He is an honorable man.

I do not wish for my son to be in the custody of my sister Petunia, I love her but she has a cruel streak and hates anyone with magic.

Lily Diane Potter'

Remus chuckled; Lily left him books…

He wasn't the least bit surprised; he copied the wills to file them with the Ministry. He wished the house hadn't been destroyed. He would have gladly published her Charms work in her name alone.

He knew he would show the will to Severus, it would do the man some good to know he was remembered even if the books had been destroyed.

Joint guardianship with Sirius? He doubted very much that Sirius would have gone along with it. He on the other hand had no objection to shared custody with Severus Prince-Malfoy, it would be easier if he could get Moony interested in someone else.

'The Last Will and Testament of Sirius Orion Black,

Since I am an unrepentant playboy, I leave a majority of my possessions to my godson Harry Potter.

To Remus Lupin, I leave Baskerville Hall. I know having to sell your parents' home to cover their debts was painful and you need a place that's yours. I also leave him a two thousand Galleon annuity in case prejudicial gits won't give him a job.

I leave James my knife that will open any door or lock- within reason of course. Don't go breaking into Gringotts Prongs.

I leave Lily, my communication mirrors so she can always talk to James when she wants to tell him off.

If James and Lily predecease me, I appoint Remus Lupin guardianship of Harry and the Ministry be damned. He's as honorable a bloke as any I know.

Sirius Orion Black

Remus sighed; Sirius was arrogant even in his will. Not that he wasn't grateful for the money and the house, in fact now he had a place for Harry to live which would fuel his case for continued guardianship of his charge.

XoooooX

Lucius was pouring over files that were open to members of the Wizengamot regarding magical contracts. Most of them about those who tried to break magical contracts for foolish reasons.

Slytherin's beard!

He needed at least two cases when someone was trapped in a magical contract that they didn't agree to that was broken. Surly in the history of the British Ministry for Magic there had to be at least that many.

Finally after hours of searching he found one.

Athens Peverell vs. Alphard Minias

Apparently Athens claimed that the Betrothal contract between his father Troyus Peverell and Alphard Minias regarding himself and Hera Minias was forged and thus invalid. He was protesting it's validity in light of a Betrothal Contract between himself and Amaryllis Black signed on his eleventh birthday in 1783. The contract between Troyus and Alphard was from 1772 could not be valid because his father would not have entered into a Betrothal Contract with Lord Caden Black if a previous contract had been signed. Troyus Peverell was an honorable man.

Alphard protested that Troyus could not be honorable if he signed two Betrothal Contracts eleven years apart for the same child.

Which proved Athens' point, the Betrothal Contract between himself and Hera Minias was invalid.

Why a Peverell would agree to a Betrothal Contract with a Black was beyond Lucius' comprehension. The Blacks had always been a Dark Family even back to Merlin. They were descended from Morganna weren't they?

The Betrothal contract between Troyus Peverell and Alphard Minias was proved forged and declared in invalid. Minias was stripped of his title and seat in the Wizengamot. He was also fined severely.

Copying the file Lucius felt more confident.

Magical contract could be broken if both parties weren't in good faith.

If Harry didn't enter the Triwizard Tournament because he never wrote his name on a slip of paper or asked anyone to put it in for him, how could he be bound by a magical contract?

Smirking, he planned in his mind the article he'd arrange for Rita Skeeter to write.

'The Boy Who Lived framed! Rumours of young Mr. Potter's fraudulent entrance into the dangerous Triwizard Tournament greatly mistaken.'

Lucius had to have the memories Harry had regarding the Tournament copied and given over to Madam Bones. She might not like him but if Harry was being treated unfairly then she would have little choice but to declare his Championship status be rescinded.

 

Chapter Text

Chapter 7

 

Remus and Draco helped Harry finish all of the make-up work.

Remus even helped Harry work on his Transfiguration work; his Glamour had sapped a lot of his magic making it difficult for him to accomplish his practical Transfiguration work. Ron's distraction also was also a factor in why his marks were so terrible. Remus was surprised that Harry had his father's natural talent for Transfiguration when he was focused.

Remus ruffled his hair affectionately, "I'm impressed; the turtle to turtle dove is a Fifth Year Transfiguration ability."

Harry blushed, joy shining in his face, he hugged the werewolf, "You're a good teacher."

Draco chuckled, "And you're no 'dunderhead'. He's actually pretty decent at Potions when he reads the directions and pays attention."

Harry glanced around, "You're a better teacher then Sn,"

Draco put a finger in front of the boy's lips, "His name is Severus Prince-Malfoy and he's my papa. Don't call him Snape."

Before Harry could reply, a house elf Apparated into the library where they were studying.

Remus and Severus had decided that it was foolish for the boys to continue studying in the bedroom and Lucius had agreed.

"Master Remus, there be a Healer Tonks calling for you."

Remus blinked and then remembered he'd sent an owl requesting that the mind healer come at his earliest convenience. Harry needed to see a mind healer due to his over usage of the Dreamless Sleep potion and the abuse that caused his scars. "Tell Healer Tonks I shall join him. Where is he?"

"Treca be putting him in the front parlour. Should Treca be telling Master Lucius or Master Severus about company?"

Remus was about to shake his head and then thought better about it, "Yes, inform them. They might have something to say that the healer should here."

Harry asked nervously, "Mr. Remus, are you sick?"

Remus shook his head, "No, I just asked him here to talk." He glanced at Draco, "Why don't you two play wizard's chess? Take a break from studies." He turned to the elf, "When you finish informing Lucius and Severus, bring the boys some cake and juice."

Treca nodded, "Yes Master Remus." Before disappearing with a soft pop.

XoooooX

Severus was brewing more nutrition potions as well as experimenting with a potion like Dreamless Sleep that would help his old friend's son sleep easier when Treca Apparated into the lap.

"Master?"

Severus spun around, "Stupid elf! Potions are delicate things. You could cause them to explode by Apparating!"

Treca wrung her hands, "Next time Treca knock. Master Remus said Treca tell Master Severus that Healer Tonks is here."

"Very well. Where are they meeting?" Severus muttered, placing the potion in stasis until he could return.

"Treca be putting Healer Tonks in the front parlour."

"I see. I'll be along shortly." Severus dismissed the elf.

"Treca so sorry Master. Treca be telling Master Lucius about Healer Tonks for Master Remus."

"I'll tell Lucius myself." Severus said brushing past the elf.

XoooooX

Remus entered the front parlour on silent feet, it was a bit unnerving to be in a place like this after all these years, much less on that belonged to a Malfoy. He cleared his throat, "Healer Tonks?"

The former Hufflepuff turned, "Mr. Lupin, I was a mite surprised to receive your owl. Much more so to find out that house you summoned me to belongs to Lucius Malfoy."

"Imagine my surprise when I was deposited here by an Auror." Remus said with a forced smile.

"How can I be of assistance?" Ted Tonks asked curious.

"I have recently been given custody of Harry Potter, who is heir to the Black family." Remus began after a bit of silence in which he used to collect his thoughts.

"Andromeda has had no contact with her family since her disownment." Ted said confused.

"I know that, I wasn't implying she had. You come highly recommended by Healer Smythe." Remus said trying not to ruffle feathers.

"I am pleased with his endorsement but I don't see how that's pertinent."

"You see Ted, Harry was severely abused by his Muggle guardians and is in need of your services." Severus said as he entered the room with Lucius at his heels.

Ted Tonks stiffened as his wife Andromeda's former betrothed entered, "Malfoy. Snape."

"Actually, it's Prince-Malfoy," Severus corrected gently.

"Either way. He was abused?"

Severus nodded, "He had a panic attack at school and fainted. His name came out of the Goblet of Fire and the School's collective reaction was that he cheated to get his name in it. He reacted as if they were all going to hurt him and crumpled to the ground. Even Nurse Pomfrey refused to treat him, giving him the worst excuse for an exam. He was seen by Healer Smythe who discovered he was suffering from severe malnutrition and showed evidence of prolonged physical abuse."

Remus was a bit annoyed that Severus had taken over the conversation but didn't say anything.

"So you want me to see Harry so we can work through his abuse?"

Remus nodded, "Yes, I'm not sure how receptive Harry will be but he needs it."

"If possible, it would be prudent for you to examine his memories and retrieve any and all relating to the Triwizard Tournament. I believe Harry when he says he didn't enter but untampered memories, which prove his truthfulness, would be of great assistance. An abused child who was frightened by the School's reaction to his name coming out of the cup has no place in a tournament with a high death toll." Lucius added.

"I am sure I can accommodate that, I agree a dangerous tournament is no place of a boy of Harry Potter's years." Ted said sternly.

"He also has been taking the Dreamless Sleep potion so often that Healer Smythe says it is losing its effectiveness." Severus said the thought just occurring to him.

"How long has he been taking it?"

"Probably since he first came to Diagon Alley and read the label at the apothecary." Severus said with a shrug. "I know he can't brew it at his ability level and I can't believe anyone would sell a potion like that to a minor. They are supposed to be regulated and purchased with an prescription from a healer..."

"We'll have deal with the reasons why he was relying so heavily on them. If we deal with the memories then perhaps he won't have nightmares about them." Ted Tonks nodded, already agreeing to take the case.

"I hope he'll agree to talk to you." Remus said quietly, "He is a very private person."

"Like his mother, Lily wouldn't tell anyone how Petunia treated her. Even her parents never knew that I know of, I don't even think she told James." Severus sighed, "I only knew because I helped her when she was crying. She knew I could understand."

"You were abused too, weren't you?" Ted interrupted.

Lucius covered Severus' hand with his own and squeezed it gently. "How did you know?"

Ted nodded, "I've treated many abused persons of all ages."

"I think you'll do quite well." Severus said squeezing his bondmate's hand back.

"Could I meet Harry?"

Lucius and Severus waited; this was Remus' decision to make.

Remus sighed, "If you wish."

Lucius summoned Treca.

"Master be wanting Treca?"

"Inform Harry that he is wanted in the front parlour."

Treca nodded and popped away.

XoooooX

Draco was literally wiping the floor with Harry, not that Harry was surprised. He was a terrible after all.

Draco sighed, "You're not even trying. Seriously, pay attention. You could play well if you paid attention. If you said knight to L4 you could take my bishop."

Harry blinked, "Oh. Knight to L4."

Harry's black knight beheaded Draco's white bishop.

Harry winced.

Draco sighed, maybe this game was too violent for Harry.

Treca Apparated into the room.

Draco raised an eyebrow, "Yes?"

"Big Master be wanting you, Little Master Harry."

"Did dad ask for me?" Draco asked.

"Master Lucius didn't say Master Draco." Treca said shifting nervously.

Draco smiled at Harry, "Come on. Where is dad?"

"Master Lucius, Master Severus and Master Remus are in the Front Parlour with the Healer still."

Draco led Harry out of the library.

XoooooX

Lucius, Severus, Remus and Ted Tonks talked quietly waiting for the boys or at least Harry.

Draco entered first holding Harry's hand.

Harry noticed the new face; this must be the healer. He gave the man a small smile but he wanted to run away Harry tried to give Remus a pleading look.

"Hello Harry. My name is Healer Ted Tonks, I'm a specialist in dealing with patients who have suffered trauma."

Harry laughed to himself, "I doubt you've seen a patient like me."

Ted looked thoughtful, "Why would that be?"

"How many slept in a kitchen cupboard until they were three?" Harry shrugged.

Lucius and Draco hissed in horror.

Severus paled.

Remus' hands clenched into fists and he growled.

Ted blinked slightly, "None that I've met but I had kids forced to sleep outside or on cold tile floors with only a thin blanket."

Lucius stiffened.

Severus shrugged, "I didn't have a bed until I went to Hogwarts. Tobias wouldn't buy one. He figured that a wizard didn't need such things. Sometimes he'd lock me in the closet for hours while he was out and Eileen was 'ill'. One time he was gone for three days, Lily came looking for me and let me out." He blushed, "It was pretty embarrassing…"

Remus dug his nails into his hands, "Is he dead?"

Severus stared at him, surprised, "Yes, murder-suicide was the police's determination. It happened while I was taking my OWL exams. Eileen didn't come to King's Cross for me so the Evans took me home. Lily walked me in and we found their bodies together."

Ted said quietly, "Must have been a relief to find them dead, they couldn't hurt you anymore."

Severus shrugged, "I suppose so. Not that it ever felt like a home anyway. I've been tempted to sell it but between training for the status of Potion Master, first class, being a spy and then a professor I hadn't had time to look for a new place."

Harry grimaced, "I can't imagine coming home to find the Dursleys dead. The whole neighborhood would be convinced I did it even it happened while I was away at school."

"Why would that be Harry?" Ted asked.

Harry frowned, "Because the Dursleys told them that I was attending St. Brutus' Secure Centre for Incurably Criminal Boys. Or at least he told his sister that, she quite enjoyed the idea that they caned me. I sounded too jovial about it and she thought I wasn't being caned hard enough. She told him to tell them to hit me harder." He shifted nervously, "I think she would have gotten along with Fitch well." He reached down to rub one of the bite marks from Ripper.

"What is bothering you Harry?" Ted asked gently surprised he was actually talking about this.

"Nothing much just a dog bite."

Draco stared at him, "You were bit by a dog?"

Harry shrugged, "It was bred as an attack dog, all her dogs hated me. I was often chased by them and ended up climbing trees to get away." Then he clammed up, he's said too much already.

Severus saw him closing down, "I think that's enough for now."

Ted nodded, "You've done very well. I would recommend we have at least three more sessions before he returns to school."

Draco was furious, knowing Harry…just when did his former rival become Harry rather then that glory-obsessed Potter? Never mind that, Harry had been starved, forced to sleep in a kitchen cupboard until he was three, attacked by dogs. He remembered Harry's reaction to the angry faces in the Great Hall and schooled his face into the impassive Malfoy mask. Draco reached over to squeeze Harry's shoulder.

Harry flinched.

Draco's eyes filled with pain and dropped his hand.

Harry couldn't stand to see that look; he twisted his fingers in his shirt and looked down at the ground.

Severus and Remus saw their interaction.

Severus understood Harry's reaction, he remembered telling Lucius about his home life and flinching away from the older then teen's comforting touch. Lucius had been hurt but had forgiven him. It was like seeing himself and Lucius all over again…

Lucius noticed it too, "Draco, why don't you and Harry go have some chocolate and some biscuits."

Draco nodded mutely, standing slowly.

Harry stood up and shuffled his feet as he followed the slightly older teen out.

"He's right," Ted said when he was sure they were gone, "I haven't treated anyone like him before. Do you have any idea what things he hasn't told me?"

"Well," Severus began, moving farther from Remus and closer to Lucius, "his first year he was riding in the first Quidditch match and Quirrell was wandlessly jinxing his broom. Harry was nearly thrown off."

Remus snarled, "Good thing he's dead."

"I was muttering the counterjinx until Miss Granger lit my robes on fire. I assume she believed I was trying to kill Harry, I may have disliked him because I was suffering from a mistaken impression that he was just like James." Severus shook his head at his own foolishness. "I was the referee for the next match and he was safe. The end of that year was when Quirrell decided to break into the underground chamber to take the Philosopher's Stone for the weakened bodiless Dark Lord."

Lucius, Ted and Remus stiffened.

"What happened?" Remus was both curious and worried he wouldn't like what he was about to hear.

Lucius had already heard about this previously but it didn't stop upsetting him. He wished he'd succeeded in getting Dumbledore removed as Headmaster and keeping his out of Hogwarts. Granted his motives hadn't been the purest, he'd been a bit foolish with that placing of that Dark Artefact in Ginny Weasley's cauldron. Severus had raked him over preverbal hot coals for agreeing to the woman's terrible idea to make Arthur Weasley look bad.

"Well, the entrance was guarded by a Cerberus and Quirrell knew it, I managed to head him off on Halloween. The other professors went in search of the Mountain Troll that got into the castle but I went to head him off. That vicious dog thing that that oaf calls Fluffy bit me. During that time Harry went to save Hermione from the troll, which had wandered into one of the girls' bathroom. He knocked it unconscious with it's own club using the flying charm he'd learned in class that day."

Lucius gently ran his thumb over the scar.

"Then what?" Ted asked, wanting to know more.

"Well he didn't get in the first time but he did the second time. Before that Harry had an encounter in the Forbidden Forest when he was in Detention when he stumbled upon Quirrell drinking the blood of a slain unicorn for the Dark Lord. I believe Granger, Weasley and Harry thought I was the one after the stone. They managed to escape all the challenges."

Ted pulled out some parchment and a quill; "Tell me about them."

Severus shrugged, "Well you had to get past the mutt by playing some music then you went in a trap door and landed in Devil's Snare. That was Pomona's challenge to protect the stone."

"So you needed to create light to get past it." Ted said thoughtfully.

"I suspect that was Granger, since she was awarded points for it." Severus reluctantly admitted. "Then came the chamber that was Filius', he had charmed a bunch of keys to have wings and fly. You had to use a broom to catch the right key which Harry probably did since he was the better flier out of the three. The next was Quirrell's, he had a Mountain troll enclosed in it; he had a 'gift' with them you see. Then was Minerva's, her's was a giant Wizard's chess set. My challenge was right after her's; once you stepped inside the chamber purple flames blocked the doorway. The doorway in front of you was blocked with black flames. I left a logic puzzle that one had to solve; there were seven bottles of different sizes and shapes. Two contained poison, three had nettle wine, a potion to go back through the purple flames and one to get through the black flames. Hermione solved it, I think Harry might have been able to if he hadn't been worried about an unconscious Weasley, his mother could have solved it."

"Then what happened?" Remus was on the figurative edge of his seat.

"Well, Harry took the potion to get the black flames only to find Quirrell flummoxed by a mirror."

Remus snorted, "A mirror?"

Severus chuckled, "Not just any mirror but the Mirror of Erised, the one that shows not your face but your deepest desire." He frowned, "I shattered it later afterwards, I was so upset by what I saw."

Lucius rest a gentle arm on his shoulder; his bondmate had ended up in his bed that night. He'd been unable to sleep alone and wouldn't speak for hours only to tell him what he saw was them with a bunch of kids including Draco.

"You see the headmaster managed to place the stone inside the mirror, only someone who didn't want the stone for selfish reasons could retrieve it. Quirrell with the Dark Lord egging him on forced Harry to look into the mirror. He told us that he had looked into the mirror only to see himself place the stone in his pocket and he felt a weight there." Severus finally spoke up again.

"And?" Ted gently prodded.

"Quirrell tried to touch him but touching Harry caused his hands to burn, it was because he was being possessed in a fashion by the Dark Lord. In the end, Quirrell ended up dead and the weak and bodiless Dark Lord disappeared. Harry was discovered after Miss Granger had told us that Harry was in the chamber. They were sure I was there but were surprised that I wasn't. I was one of the first to reach him, the Headmaster returning while we rescued Harry who had passed out when Quirrell attempted to strangle him."

"Wait!" Ted interrupted, "You're telling that all that happened to an already traumatized boy when he was eleven?"

Severus nodded.

Remus was irate and twitching with anger.

Lucius was the only one who knew all this, but it had a different meaning knowing that Harry had been severely abused prior.

Severus winced, "His next year was worse."

Ted's eyes widened, "Wasn't the year the Chamber of Secrets was opened again?"

Severus glared at Lucius, "Yes it was; a possessed Ginny Weasley was responsible for six people being petrified. Harry was convinced to enter the Chamber and face the monster within to save Ginny Weasley. Which only increased her worship of him sadly. As if having Granger petrified wasn't traumatic enough."

Lucius shifted nervously, knowing full well he was very much responsible for that whole series of incidents.

Remus didn't notice Lucius Malfoy's guilty behavior, "What was the monster?"

Severus shivered, "A basilisk. Harry was somehow a parselmouth, so he was able to enter the Chamber. He killed the Basilisk but not after facing the shard of the Dark Lord's soul that inhabited a diary and was draining life from Ginny Weasley. Harry killed the basilisk, stabbing it with the Sword of Gryffindor and then using one of the basilisk's fangs to stabbing the diary."

Remus' eyes blazed with fury, "My cub faced the Dark Lord twice before he was thirteen! He was nearly killed in front of me his Third Year!"

Lucius was a Veela and could hold his own but he wasn't willing to admit to the werewolf that he had a hand in putting Harry in danger.

Ted held up his hand, "I think I've learned enough to start thinking about how best to help Harry."

"Recently my Bonding to your bondmate's youngest sister was annulled. If she would like to meet her former nephew, I'm sure it could be arranged. Severus recently blood adopted Draco." Lucius said rising.

Ted nodded stiffly, "I'll pass along the message. I'll owl you when to expect me again so we can discuss when Harry's next session should be."

Ted left.

Remus stormed off, too irate to stay there another moment.

Lucius collapsed back on the settee, "I hate to know his reaction if he knew who was responsible for Ginny Weasley having possession of that book."

Severus sighed, "I certainly won't tell him." Taking Lucius' hand, he'd already forgiven him and even knowing how badly the Dursleys had treated Harry he couldn't be angry with his bondmate. Especially, in light of how Lucius had forgiven him for letting Dumbledore kill their child…

 

Chapter Text

Chapter 8

 

Harry had been out of Hogwarts for a week.

Lucius and Severus were dodging floo calls and Howlers from Dumbledore, McGonagall and Molly Weasley. Sirius even sent one,

'Snivellius!

I knew you couldn't be trusted from the beginning! You let my godson go. You take him back to Hogwarts. Don't worry I'll still make you pay!

I already owe you for getting Remus fired! You just enjoy giving me reasons to hate you. Why kidnap Harry? What are you planning? If you try turning him into a Dark Wizard I'll kill you!'

Remus glared at the letter as it exploded, he waited until their hearing returned. "You didn't deserve that. You're only trying to help Harry."

Severus sighed, brushing the ash from his robes, "Black doesn't know that. Dumbledore got to him first and Black is still determined to think the worst of me. I was responsible for Pettigrew escaping and I wanted him to be Kissed. He has every right to want retribution."

Remus held out his hand, "I'll give you a Wizard's oath that I won't let Sirius hurt you."

Severus blinked, "Why in Merlin's Name would you do that?"

"Because after finally getting what you wanted after so long is important. I've never seen you happy before and I'd hate for you to lose that because Sirius is being his usual arrogant self." Remus said as honestly as he could to avoid admitting Moony had decided long ago that they were mates.

Lucius' eyes narrowed, he saw barely restrained desire in Lupin's eyes as well as respect. His Veela was not pleased to see their mate being gazed at like that but Lupin made no effort to claim what was already his.

Remus looked up and winced, he'd forgotten Lucius was here. He took his hand back, "I'll make that oath when you're ready. I have things to discuss privately with Lucius."

Severus looked from one face to another, something was brewing and he wasn't welcome. It hurt some but he let himself out.

"That's my mate you were looking at." Lucius snarled.

Remus held up his hands in gesture of surrender, "As a man I know that, I knew when he introduced himself as Prince-Malfoy that I never had a claim on him. He was already yours when Moony decided he was our mate. I've lived with werewolves; I know the consequences for daring to lay a hand on another's mate. I had hoped that my ill-placed desire for Severus would escape your notice."

"Surely, your wolf can tell he's infertile." Lucius glared.

Remus fish-mouthed, "In," he couldn't speak the word, "how?"

"Dumbledore," Lucius spat out the name, "found out he was with child and forced him to agree to an abortion. If he'd informed me that he was expecting then my Bonding to the woman would have been off. As much as I wish that child would have lived, we wouldn't have Draco."

Remus' hands clenched into fists, nails clawing into his palms as his eyes glowed with gold, "How dare he!" it didn't matter that the child's sire had been Lucius' and not his, his would be mate had had a child torn from him. "How did he ended infertile though?"

"The spell used in the abortion was illegal and makes the bearer infertile. Severus doesn't believe he is worthy of me because he can't bear my children."

"He is completely infertile?"

Lucius nodded, "He can neither bear nor sire children."

Remus swallowed, "I offer myself then."

Lucius stared at him, "What!"

"It's possible right? For someone to bear a child for a lord in secret and the Lord's bondmate adopts the child at birth making them their own." Remus gulped, "I'm sure I read it somewhere."

"I won't sleep with another." Lucius said his voice cold.

"I didn't mean that. I meant." Remus paused to choose his words carefully, "I meant, you could use my seed to create a child and magically implant the fetus in Severus. I don't think I could carry a child with my curse. That is if the thought of Severus carrying a child that has blood of a Veela and werewolf doesn't displease you."

Lucius sighed, "As pure as that offer might seem there must be another way."

"He was your mate first and I have never tried to claim him. My offer was made to you and not him. I am sure his infertility was meant to make me not want him anymore but I am a man of honor and integrity. I am angry such a cruel act was done to him and I understand why when he looks at Draco he has that strange look of love, longing and sorrow." Remus said softly, "If you want a wizard's oath not to ever attempt to come between,"

Lucius held up his hand, "I trust you, you've proven that you wouldn't do anything dishonorable. For now we will trust each other."

Remus knew that that trust might be rescinded at anytime.

XoooooX

Within two hours of the conversation between Remus and Lucius an owl arrived from Gringotts.

Remus opened it,

'To Mr. Remus Lupin,

Guardian of the Heir of the Houses of Black and Potter

This is to inform you that our inventory of the Potter heir's inheritance has brought to light unlawful entry to the vaults. We regret to report a loss of monies and heirlooms. Potter monies have been used to purchase stocks in broomstick companies notably Nimbus and Comet, the Daily Prophet, publishing firms and apothecaries. Black monies have disappeared and properties have been unlawfully sold.'

Remus growled, someone had stolen from Harry and Sirius. He stormed into Lucius' study waving the letter, "I want someone of impeccable lineage and honor to serve as Harry's Wizengamot proxy. We need to protect his interests." He couldn't serve; he was a Halfblood and a werewolf.

Lucius stroked his chin, "I can't. The maximum votes a person can hold are two. I already vote for the Prince and Malfoy lines because Severus doesn't wish too. Though I can claim to vote now as my bondmate's proxy. I can recommend only one; the Weasley line though poor already holds their own vote and the Prewett's through Molly. Why not ask Andromeda? Don't mention Sirius to her, I heard though sources that she took Sirius' betrayal of James hard. She thought he was a decent sort for being part of the same Dark Family. She'd consider it an honor to reclaim the family I'm sure."

Remus blinked, "I thought you didn't like the Blacks."

Lucius sneered, "I hate Narcissa and Bellatrix, I detested Regulus and I wanted Sirius' head but I envied Andromeda. She did something I was too cowardly to do, she turned her back on her family and ran off to be Bonded to the man she wanted to have as her Bondmate."

Remus sighed, "I doubt she'll see me. I remind her of Sirius."

"Invite her to meet Harry. I'll be away at the Ministry and Severus and Draco can brew in the lab. You can tell her as little or as much as she needs to know. She may already know something; her Bondmate is Harry's Mind Healer. Who knows what their definition of Pillow talk is. I tell Severus everything because I know he can be trusted. You can always ask if she can accompany Tonks on his visit today."

Remus nodded, it was weird knowing that Ted Tonks who had agreed to help treat Harry because of his abuse by Lily's relations and his terrifying 'adventures' at school.

Neither bothered to read the rest of the Gringotts letter, they were sure that Dumbledore had something to do with the raiding of the vaults.

Chapter Text

Chapter 9

 

Draco had helped Harry in brewing before Lunch, he'd discovered the Gryffindor had talent that had gone unnoticed due to Weasley's constant blabbering, Granger's continuous correcting and his papa's overbearing, sometimes frightening to non-Slytherins teaching methods.

Harry managed to properly brew most of the potions that his papa had had taught them in class over the last three years.

Draco had grown up brewing so they were quite easy, he could almost do it blindfolded and was accused of being Professor Snape's favorite.

Four owls arrived; two flew at Harry and the others at Draco when they entered their study room with the Wizarding Chess set.

Harry read his a bit nervous.

'Harry,

Mate, where are you? It's bad enough that you cheated to get into the Tournament without telling me. Why couldn't you enter it for the both of us? Some best mate you are.

What was the fainting bit for? Some pureblood bint attempt to avoid punishment? Serves you right, what is it like being kidnapped by Snape? Is he forcing you to scrub cauldrons? Professor Slughorn is a better teacher anyway. I hope they arrest the greasy dungeon bat and throw away the key.

Do us a favor you embarrassed our house enough. So don't bother coming back.

Ron'

Harry felt crushed; Ron believed he was a cheater? How could Ron abandon him like that? His eyes filled with tears as Harry opened the second letter.

'Oh Harry,

What were you thinking? Didn't you listen when I mentioned the death toll? I know you think you're brave because of what we've done the last few years but why did you put your name in the cup? How did you manage to fool the Headmaster's age line?

I can't believe you fainted to avoid punishment. You should admit what you did. You embarrassed our school Harry and upset the visiting school. You are holding up the Tournament. I'm not sure I believe Snape kidnapped you. He really doesn't like you and you're both gone.

Why don't you just come back and apologize for upsetting and worrying everyone. I don't think it will change the fact that you're a Champion but it might make everyone less angry.

You're falling behind Harry so do hurry back. I want to see you for myself so I know you're okay.

Hermione'

Harry dropped the letter, he felt so isolated from them. How could they both believe he would cheat or fake fainting?

Draco gently wrapped an arm around Harry, holding him as the boy shook with silent sobs. He didn't react, giving the boy as much privacy and comfort as he could. He opened his first letter.

'Draco,

How could you leave school without telling me? I'm so hurt. We've known each other since we were children. It would make our mothers very happy if we were Bonded.

It isn't true is it? Professor Snape didn't kidnap Cheater Potter did he? I can't understand why he would. Potter's useless. His marks are below mediocre, his manners and attire are atrocious.

I don't know why they let such people attend Hogwarts. Thank Morganna that he's not a Slytherin. That would make it even more appalling.

Your devoted

Pansy'

Draco scowled; mother wanted him to be Bonded to that clingy, loathsome girl? Her hair was all right but her nose totally ruined her face. She acted like she was the prettiest girl in Hogwarts but she was far from it.

He opened the next letter.

'Draco,

"When are you coming back? You owe me two Wizarding Chess matches. Plus you owe me for the Goblet of Fire poll in Slytherin House. You bet twenty-five galleons on Adrian Pucey. It came out Diggory and the House- meaning me won because no one guessed that. It was surprising that Flint bet on that Angelina Johnson.

It is a bit nice to be the highest ranked boy in our year. Don't hurry back on my account unless you're willing to pay up. Your shadows Goyle and Crabbe are absolutely useless without you. They stare at the wall and stuff their mouths.

Blaise Zabini'

Draco chuckled, for all his protests not to care for him it was easy to tell that Blaise had a crush on him. The Halfblood was too proud to admit such a thing.

Harry managed to cry himself to sleep and dozed off on Draco's shoulder.

Draco was perversely pleased that Harry had come to trust him in such a short period of time.

XoooooX

Severus, Lucius and Remus were taking tea in the front parlour when Treca announced that Mind Healer Tonks and his bondmate Andromeda had arrived.

Lucius nodded, "Let them in."

Ted enter looking surprised, his Bondmate Andromeda looked like a blend of her sisters; she had Narcissa's face and Bellatrix's hair but the expression in her eyes was softened. Her hair was loosely pinned to the top of her head in a bun.

Severus bowed, gesturing politely to sit. "We are quite grateful that you could join us."

"I apologize for the short notice but revelations keep coming abruptly." Remus apologized. "Harry's been abused for years by his Muggle Aunt, he's had a terrifying few years at Hogwarts and his inheritance has been robbed. I can't represent Harry's best interests in the Wizengamot or vote on the Board of Hogwarts governors. I haven't the background for. I hoped you might be willing. Harry desperately needs your bondmate's services as a mind healer."

Andromeda sighed, "Ted and I have no secrets when it comes to one another. He often talks to me when he wants to have a second opinion. I know everything about Harry and his life before now. I never trusted Dumbledore. I was against Ted joining the Order but he thought it was the right thing to do. I said my piece and I let him do as he saw fit. If you want me to be Harry's voice in the Wizengamot and on the Hogwarts Board of Governors I shall. I still can't believe he robbed Harry's inheritance."

"I have banned him from access to Harry's vaults and the goblins vehemently insisted on the return of his vault keys. He was threatened with incarceration in Nagnok prison beneath Gringotts if he did not. The Goblins are threatening to take him Goblin Court to stand before Urkhar the Judicious for embezzlement and theft which hold a term of life imprisonment." Remus smirked.

Lucius snarled, "Life imprisonment isn't good enough for that bastard. He killed my firstborn and for that I want his life!"

Severus winced at Lucius' vengeful tone.

Remus nodded, "For that he should be killed."

Severus' eyes snapped to the werewolf, "Why would you say that?"

Lucius glared at Remus, his eyes clearly informing him to watch his words.

"I'd be just as angry if it had been Lily's child. If that bastard forced her to have an abortion I wouldn't forgive him either." True but not the entire truth, his wolf wanted vengeance for his mate's pup's murder. He had not claim on Severus, he had made that quite clear to Lucius but he had to maintain a distance between them so not to give Lucius cause to want his head.

Andromeda blinked, "He killed the firstborn of the heir to the house of Malfoy? Was this after I eloped with Ted? You mean to say Dumbledore killed your child?" Andromeda had suffered two miscarriages after Nymphadora and had been forced to have a permanent contraceptive charm placed on her womb when the last miscarriage nearly killed her. "I can understand how much you must have suffered losing your child. I lost two of my own."

"I don't like to talk about it. I didn't tell Lucius until I finally let a Healer examine me…he told me that the abortion was caused by a curse that not only killed my baby but…made me infertile. I can neither sire nor conceive a child of my own. I tried to break things off with Lucius even though he had his Bond with Narcissa annulled but he wouldn't let me." Severus smiled squeezing his mate's hand, "He knew what I needed more then anything was to be Bonded to him and to make Draco my son. Though looking after Harry has been a blessing. I haven't had much time to think…."

Lucius was grateful that Severus had finally told him about their child, he wished he could take away the guilt and pain that his mate had. Their child had been ripped away from both of them before they had a choice. "We'll need all the support we can get."

Andromeda smirked, "So tell me besides annulling the bonding between you and my spoilt sister what are you planning to do with her?"

Lucius sneered, "She has been turned out of Malfoy Manor. All she has is what she came with; her Bonding robes, the clothes she wore as a student, her trust vault and your parents' house. Unless of course you want it."

Andromeda winced, "I turned my back on them, I am a Black only by blood. I followed few of the old ways. I mostly picked and chose. I did ask Amelia who had been a mentor to Ted if she would consent to being godmother to our child. I wonder if that is why she was sorted there, the Bones family have been Hufflepuffs for generations and have strong magic.

Ted spoke up, "Sometimes love is helpful in treating emotional and mental scars. Severus, may I call you that?" he couldn't call him Snape but he wasn't comfortable calling him Prince-Malfoy yet.

Severus nodded.

"I think you too need my services. I insisted that Annie see a colleague after losing our children. As a healer I couldn't in good consciousness treat her myself anymore then I could attend to my own pain. You admitted that you were abused and also dreadfully bullied in my presence."

Severus stiffened, he wasn't comfortable seeing anyone and telling his tale of his sordid life.

Ted sighed, "If you won't seek treatment for yourself how can you insist Harry see me? Don't you see? You have to set an example. You are the only tie to both his parents. He's been told his father was a hero and your existence makes that a lie. He seems to have never admitted the truth of 'Harry-Hunting' until you told him about 'Snivellius-Baiting'. He will rely on you more heavily because only you can understand him. I know that Remus is his guardian but you Severus understand his pain and frustration for being abused and responsible adults turning a blind eye to it."

Severus thought of Harry being forced to sleep in a cupboard, he winced remembering times when his father would lock him up in dark spaces: sometimes a cupboard and other times the basement. It wasn't until he learned to brew that he turned that basement prison into a sanctuary. He learned that brewing required little to no wand use and that their house was shielded so even the Trace was practically invisible and unusable.

Ted noticed the haunted look in the younger man's eyes; he recognized it having seen it so many times. "Did they lock you up in the dark as well?"

Severus clenched his robe in his hands, "They did, until I learned to use the dark and harness it. I turned it into my first potions lab. I…it was in the dark...in the dungeons where I met Lucius."

Lucius hugged him; "My world was pretty dark until you anyway. I didn't understand how much you meant to me until I turned sixteen and came into my inheritance. Father was furious. He'd planned my life from day one and being Veela was never a part of that. Though I had a brief moment of freedom when you and Ted eloped. I wished I had your courage; I was too cowardly to risk everything. If I'd even guessed about our child I would have thrown it all away. After we were legally bonded I would have come back informed father my Veela mate was pregnant. He would have begrudgingly accepted Severus. You see despite our dark history we have had Veela running through our blood. Those who are proved Veela when they come into their inheritance are destined to follow the light. By forcing me to bond with your sister who was not my mate my powers were stifled. I had much of my inheritance bound, father wanted me for the Dark Lord and my being Veela was a hindrance to that. He promised me from birth as my wife did to Draco. Only problem, I know my son is Veela. It won't be proved until he comes into his inheritance at age sixteen but he is Veela. Legally, Severus is my bondmate but there is much that has to be undone before he becomes my mate under Veela laws."

All those who are proved Veela by their sixteenth birthday are subject the authority and expectations of the leader of the Veela communities. They all swore fealty to the Queen of the Veelas a woman named Ruxandra Sorina Vulpes. Lucius had, he'd been summoned before the court as soon as he came into his inheritance. A portkey was usually sent in the shape of a bird.

There was a tap on the window. Severus rose to open it.

A swan with an arch of golden feathers upon its head landed on Lucius' knee with a scroll and a golden mesh bag containing one of their infamous portkeys.

Lucius gasped, "A letter from the queen?" he unrolled it and read.

'My son,

It is our wish that you and your mate come to court. Our seer has made a prophecy that you must be made known of. We expect you to arrive with your mate, the wolf, your son and the boy whom you rescued. You are to arrive no later then one hour after you receive this.

Your Queen,

Ruxandra Sorina'

He blinked, "Severus, get the boys. Have them dress in their finest. We've been summoned." He glanced up at the Tonks, "my apologies for the abrupt end of our meeting. Remus, write up a letter authorizing Andromeda as your political voice. Then you and I must dress. I am afraid Severus and yourself must borrow something of mine. L have had little time to see to the proper wardrobe for my bondmate and yourself."

Severus stood on shaky feet, "I shall hurry the boys. I'll join you in our room in ten minutes." He'd never had a chance to meet the Veela queen who insisted on meeting her children and their mates.

Remus was shocked, he knew so little about his kind but he was sure that none he had met in his time as a spy for the Light had ever been summoned

The Tonks rose.

"We'll see you as soon as you return. Farewell." Andromeda said ushering her bondmate from the parlour. To her knowledge there were no Veela in the Black line but there was some other creature blood. It was assumed to have died out…if such a thing was magically possible.

XoooooX

Severus threw open the door to find Draco softly singing to a sleeping Potter. Two pieces of parchment had fallen from Harry's fingers.

Draco looked up and hissed, "You'll wake him."

Severus sneered, "That would be the idea. We've been summoned."

Draco stared, "By who?"

"The Queen."

Draco's jaw dropped, "I'm not sixteen yet."

"From what I know about her you come when you're called. The five of us have been summoned and the five of us will go. Now wake Harry and take him to your rooms. Find your two best outfits and dress robes and get dressed. We're running on a schedule not our own. I must dress as well."

"Is Lupin coming?"

Severus fixed him with his 'Are you a dunderhead' glare, "I said the five of us, what do you think?"

Draco sighed, gently shaking Harry as he whispered in his ear, "Harry, wake up. We've got to hurry."

Harry woke screaming.

Draco winced, hugging him, "It's alright. You're safe."

"He's going to hurt me." Harry sobbed.

Draco held him closer, "Never, never again. Come on dry your tears. We're going some place really special, some place no ordinary wizard gets to go. Come on Harry, we've got to get changed. The Queen wants us."

Harry choked on a sob, "The Queen? Why would the Queen of England want to see me?"

Draco laughed, "Not the Queen of England, the Queen of the Veelas. We don't have a lot of time. You come when she calls."

Harry felt his face; it was grimy with dried tear tracks. "I can't go like this."

"We'll take a fast shower." Draco said helping him up, "But we've got to hurry."

Severus left them behind.

XoooooX

"Why would the Queen of the Veela want to see me? I'm a werewolf. Unlike a Veela, I'm a Dark Creature." Remus protested.

Lucius rolled his eyes, "Ours is not to question but obey. She summons; we go. That is our way. Don't the werewolves have an Alpha that all serve?"

Remus scowled, "How should I know? I try to have as little to do with them as possible. Every werewolf and wizard know the name of Greyback but I surely hope he isn't the true Alpha."

Lucius pulled out a pair of black linen pants, a yellow silk shirt with almost a golden hue and a white bow tie. "Put these on." He pulled out a pair of raw silk trousers, a green silk shirt and a black tie with a serpent on it for his mate. Severus got cold easily and raw silk held heating charms better.

Remus reluctantly cast a refresher charm on himself before stripping to his boxers and dressing.

Severus walked in to see Remus buttoning his trousers; he coughed slightly, "Oh I didn't realize we're all changing here."

Lucius glared at Remus, "You're not. You're going in there," pointing at their en suite bathroom, "you're washing that gunk out of your hair and freshening up. No use wearing the Glamour, it won't work in her Castle."

Severus winced, "Salazar preserve us. This is unfortunate." He took his clothes and went to put himself together. He was not happy about having to show his true face to anyone. It was bad enough Lucius could see beneath his Glamour from day one.

Lucius dressed himself and stood before a mirror recombing his hair before tying it up. His best robes were slung over his shoulder and he reached for his snake-headed cane.

Severus reluctantly emerged, wearing his clothes from Lucius and wavy black hair brushing his collar. His nose like Dumbledore's had been badly broken and not healed properly, his fingers had the same crooked look and he walked with a limp.

Remus grabbed one of the posters of Lucius and Severus' bed, he could hardly breathe. His wolf was furious; this is what Severus looked like? He wasn't greasy or ugly at all, not that he really thought his mate- he bit his lip. Severus was not his mate.

Lucius clapped his hands, "We better hurry. I hope the boys are ready."

Remus fought to hold his temper; he was meeting the leader of all Veela. It was an honor he wondered if he truly deserved.

XoooooX

Draco helped Harry from the room, but not before summoning all the letters.

Harry shuffled after him, a bit nervous. Why would a queen want to meet him? HE was just a useless freak. It didn't matter if the Wizarding World suffered under the delusion that he was some great Hero who defeated the Evil One when he was just a baby.

Draco pulled him into the bathroom, "Just get undressed." He used his wand to turn the bathtub into a two-person shower. It was just a smaller version then his one in the Dungeons that he shared with Blaise, Theo, Vince and Greg.

Shyly Harry undressed, he was self-conscious about his scars.

Draco chuckled, "By the way don't try wearing a Glamour when we go. They don't work in her castle. Dad said so. Papa won't like it."

Harry gulped, "You mean they'll see all my scars? Oh…why can't I stay here?"

"Because like papa said, she calls we go. We haven't a choice. She wouldn't call us if it weren't important.

They washed quickly and went to dress.

XoooooX

They all entered the parlour.

Lucius checked his watch, "We have one minute. Grab on." He floated the portkey in front of them and five different hands grabbed it.

Chapter Text

Chapter 10

 

Harry sagged to his knees when the portkey dumped them. When he no longer felt ill, he looked around to see exquisite marble floors; the walls shimmered like diamonds or crystal.

In front of them bearing gold and silver spears were two guards wearing white robes.

Standing before them was a young woman with golden hair, "Her majesty is waiting."

Draco helped Harry up.

Lucius took Severus' arm, gesturing for the others to stay close.

The guards followed behind Draco and Harry who were at the end of the party leaving Remus in the middle.

They entered a large hall, seated on a velvet and gold throne was a about the age of the Black woman, she had gold hair that felt to the floor like a cape. Seated on the floor at her feet was a young girl, who looked vaguely familiar whose golden hair cascaded around her shoulders like a short cape.

A honeyed voice spoke, "Lucius my son. Come closer."

A set of five chairs appeared.

Lucius settled Severus in the center one, gesturing for Remus and Harry to sit on his other side.

Draco bit back a scowl, he was not happy to be separated from Harry. He was too well bred to show his displeasure.

"Now pet you may speak."

The girl rose to her feet, "Last night in the tower I had a dream, a vision. Unlike you young Malfoy I was born Veela. I was born a Veela seer and as such I was born with my abilities. My name is Luna, Luna Avalon Lovegood. Don't laugh Sir. I have my Veela blood through your cousin."

Lucius dare not speak after stifling his laugh. Lovegood was the name his cousin Xeno Bonded to after his father banished him. Xeno's soul was so pure that the mark would not appear even when marked by the dark lord. The memory had been removed and Xeno released but not before Abraxus tortured him with the Cruciatus.

"You are his mate, I've seen you. You were prevented from mating long ago but you're almost free. You bear a mark Lucius that binds your Veela and makes you weak. Severus took the mark out of love. One who doesn't bear the mark can remove it out of love. You are a special case, born as mate to two pure of heart. One born a creature of light but made dark and the other made a creature of darkness but still pure of heart."

Remus shook his head, "He's already Lucius', and I can't stand in the way."

The girl laughed, it was like music and birds singing, "You cannot change path fate has chosen. You are the third, the curse that one bears can be broken. Only if he can be loved by one of light and one of dark."

Remus' wolf was thrilled; he would have his mate. Remus felt guilty.

The girl walked towards Harry, "You are different it is true. Born for a Veela though thou art not. There has never been one quite like you. You were born for the House of Black though you were born a Potter. When you come into your inheritance you will know, that the one you were meant for is at your side. You will not find your mate amoung your own kind."

Harry whispered, "What am I?"

The girl laughed, "You little lion are a rare and beautiful, the first sign of your inheritance is your ability to speak Parseltongue. Though not dark, thou are not a creature of light. You child are gray. You should have been a Slytherin for you are destined to change many things." She turned to her queen, "Should we invite your other guests? It might be best if he learns the truth of his origins from one of his own."

The Veela Queen waved her hand.

Three attendants left.

"The Prophecy you see regarding Harry Potter is this:

The chosen one

Is more then he seems

He speaks with a hiss

Holds a power unseen

Grounded by light

He shall make all things right

The signs have begun. The stage is set. You young Malfoy will ground the first Chuvash born to mate a Veela."

Draco gasped, "Chuvash? There haven't been Chuvash in generations."

"I know. I'm the last."

They all looked over their shoulder.

"I am Sirius Black, I am the last known Chuvash born into the Black Family. All pureblood have the blood of magical creatures running through their veins. I mated amoung my own kind and left the family. I have over the years risen to the leadership of my kind. I have had Chuvash children myself but you child have the dark wild hair of the Blacks. Who was your Black ancestor?"

Harry was overwhelmed. "I…don't know."

Lucius spoke up, "Dorea, the daughter of Cygnus Black and Violetta Bulstrode. Cygnus was the son of Phineas Nigellus Black. Dorea was his grandmother."

"Phineas' granddaughter? That makes you my great-great-grandnephew. I am so pleased to meet you."

Harry looked at the man; he was huge. He must be over six feet tall, he looked taller them Bill and Charlie Weasley. He stammered, "Hi. Will I look like you?"

Sirius shook his head, "No. I believe the missive I received said you would be a submissive. I hope that your mate is powerful enough to ground you because the power I sense in you is vast."

Luna spoke again, "He will. The power within Draco Malfoy is great, his love is vast and his desire to protect will only grow. At his side shall stand the Chuvash children Zabini and Longbottom."

"What about Ron and Hermione?" Harry whispered.

"They will turn their backs on you."

Harry broke, crumbling to the floor his chest shaking in silent sobs.

Draco strode over to him and wrapped his arms around him. He never liked Ron Weasley; he always knew there was something off about him. He swore that he would never abandon Harry; never.

Luna blushed, "I am one born without a mate."

Lucius blinked, a Veela without a mate? How could that be? A Veela needed a mate to ground them, to comfort them.

"The key to the removal of your marks lies in Harry. He must speak to them; only by understanding them can he change them. When they have been reborn so shall you Lucius."

Lucius bowed, "Sirius, it seems that your young great-great grandnephew is in a spot of trouble. He was trapped in a magical contract."

"His guardian is here?"

Remus raised his hand.

Sirius sniffed, "Werewolf? Interesting, a werewolf protecting a Chuvash. I've never heard the like. Tell me about this 'contract'.

"His name came out of the Goblet of Fire."

Sirius laughed, "Oh that old thing. Those types of magical contracts are only valid if entered by a person of legal age. A wizard or a witch reaches that at Seventeen, a Veela and a Chuvash reach that at sixteen. Harry is what fourteen? Even though he has magical creature blood he cannot participate without permission from myself."

The Veela Queen nodded, "Lady Fleur Delacour begged for my assent when she was declared eligible to participate by Beauxbatons. I also gave assent for her sister to participate as needed. They needed her in one of the Tasks. I was assured that she would be unharmed."

Lucius knew the gist of Second Task, "How old is the child?"

Ruxandra Sorina laughed, "Merely nine. I met her; my seer told us that she was wanted for the tournament. She will be revealed Veela when she comes into her inheritance. A Veela parent can tell when they are mere hours old. NonVeela parents won't know until they come into an inheritance. Lucius knows his son is soon to join our numbers."

"I have a question your Graciousness."

"Speak Lucius, my child."

"How is it that this young seer has no mate?"

"Luna child would you like to answer?"

Luna nodded, "You see, I wasn't born incomplete. There is no other half of my soul. A true Seer, one destined to See for the Queen is always born complete. They are born Veela they do not gain an inheritance at sixteen. I have been having visions since I was two and prophesying since I was four. I assume a different appearance at school; I don't want anyone to guess my abilities. The last thing I need is Dumbledore to take me away from my Queen. I live to serve her alone. True Veela Seers are rare, fate trades in our soulmates for our abilities."

Lucius nodded squeezing Severus' hand, "You are sure that he was born as a mate to both of us?" he really wasn't keen on sharing, but is this girl spoke the truth Remus held the key to removing their marks and freeing them.

Luna laughed, "Why do you think he was born so powerful? Almost no one has the temperament or the power to be mated to a child of light and a child of dark. He needs two mates. Remus breaks the mark on Severus, Severus breaks the mark on Lucius and together Severus' mates shall break his infertility curse."

"How shall we do this?" Severus asked quietly, his hand over his stomach.

"By reversing the curse Professor."

Severus gasped, "Revers…"

Luna smiled, "Yes. Reverse the curse and all will be well. Send the curse back from whence it came."

"Will everything be as it was before?" Severus was a bit hopeful it might return his child as unlikely as it was.

"Before you were pregnant? Yes, I wish I could tell you that you would be pregnant once more but I can't. I only see the curse reversed." She turned to Severus and Harry, "When their powers are granted, your mates will heal what pain has been inflicted. Remus and Lucius need to practice the Triad Charm, using Remus' power Lucius can reverse the curse. The mating trinity you will form will share your abilities. Severus will be able to wield your healing, Lucius Severus' spell creation and Remus will be able to brew."

Severus gasped, "Remus can brew without blowing up cauldrons?"

Remus blushed, everyone knew his talent at potion making was nil. To even have a tenth of Severus' ability was a gift.

Severus scoffed, "Well I can't have a mate who is a danger to my lab."

"You won't be able to brew yourself if you were pregnant. Who do you think you would want brewing for you? Some stranger? Or someone whose shares your talent?"

Severus blushed, after belonging to Lucius for so long how could he considering sharing his heart and body with another? He remembered Remus' reaction to Albus' murder of his child and wondered just how much he was cared for.

The Veela Queen rose, "I think I'd like to retire for dinner. You are welcome to see yourselves out my children. Sirius, it is a pleasure to be in equal company. I hope to see you soon."

The man laughed, "My dear, it is my pleasure. To think that our kind will be bonded is a joy. If your child Lucius does not object I would like to accompany him. He and his mates will need all the information I can give. Helping a Chuvash with his inheritance is a bit different from helping a Veela. His magic will be hard to control and his mate will be needed to ground him."

Lucius bowed, "It would be an honor."

Together the six took their leave.

Luna called out, "Professor?"

Severus turned.

"If I have need to tell you anything important when you return I will get myself detention. Until then you don't know me any better then any other Ravenclaw."

Severus bowed, "Thank you child." He would have to avoid favoritism for her even though he seemed to owe her.

Chapter Text

Chapter 11

 

Draco lifted Harry into his arms after they used the portkey to return them home.

Harry buried his face in his former rival's shirt, was it crazy that Draco Malfoy of all people made him feel safe? He was so used to having to put aside his own fear to protect and save other people.

Draco was still surprised at how tiny Harry was compared to himself and how little he still weighed despite the steady stream of food and potions they made sure he had. He glanced at his father who seemed lost in thought, "I'm going to take him up to bed. He needs to rest."

Severus nodded, "Go ahead. He's had a shocking experience."

Draco walked away carrying the tiny Gryffindor.

Sirius Black I looked around, "Nice place, it's aged gracefully. So you're a Malfoy and a Veela at that. Veela shows up in the blood more often then Chuvash anyway."

Severus was a better host then that woman was, "Why don't you join us in the parlour so we can talk."

"I closed Black Manor after I mated and cut myself off from the Black family. How have they been faring?"

Lucius snorted, "You know anything about the current Dark Lord?"

Sirius nodded, "There were repeated requests for us to join his ranks. I heard the giants and the werewolves did. The centaurs weren't foolish enough to throw in with them."

"Well the previous person to hold the title of Lord Black, Orion was the husband of Walburgha, they were second cousins. Walburgha hated anyone who didn't have two magical parents of the right ancestry. I have a feeling she wouldn't have been someone you would approve of. She insisted on arranging bonding for every Black child from the cradle not just her own. Her eldest niece was betrothed to me, her second niece was betrothed the Lestrange heir and the youngest was betrothed to her eldest son. My father was furious that I was Veela, because it ruined his plans. He promised me to the Dark Lord as an infant and my being born a creature of light was embarrassing. Even worse I found myself drawn to Severus but I was trapped in a betrothal contract with Andromeda Black. She eloped and married a Muggleborn wizard who has since risen to be the most praised Mind Healer. I attempted to approach my father about bonding to my mate but your descendant had previously blasted her son your second namesake off the family tapestry and disowned him. Thus leaving her youngest niece without a future Bondmate, my father and Walburgha conspired to betroth me instead to Narcissa."

Lucius spat the name in distaste. "They forced me not only to bond to someone not my mate but to forced me to take the mark. It bound my magic; I am weaker having lost access to the magic I received on my sixteenth birthday when I came into my inheritance as well as my healing abilities. As long as I bear his mark I cannot access my Veela and mate to my beloved."

Sirius was furious, he roared, "She dared stand between a Veela and his mate? Traitor! Abomination! Shame of my flesh! Filth! Scum! By-products of dirt and vileness! How dare you befoul the House of my Ancestors! I'll remove her from the family tree! Does she still live?"

Lucius flinched, casting a privacy web around the room to prevent Harry from hearing. "She died nine years ago. One son joined the Dark Lord and died in his service before then I believe. The woman and her middle sister Bellatrix joined as well. Walburgha convinced them that they were a Dark Family and had to help clean the Wizarding world from Muggleborns, Halfbloods and creatures."

"Yet not realizing that her own niece was Bonded to a Veela?" Sirius snapped. "Or that the blood of Chuvash runs through our heritage? If it weren't for the blood of certain magical creatures we would inbreed ourselves. It creates squibs and madness! Has she forgotten?"

Remus, Severus and Lucius watched as he transformed with a roar.

He stood in Chuvash form at over seven feet; his wings were a mix of stormy gray, black and dark blue scales overlaying a wingspan of over thirty feet. Sirius Black I had talons rather then hands and feet. His face had changed shape and he started cursing in Parseltongue and what also must be the ancient language of Draconic.

Rumor had it that there was also Chuvash in Slytherin's line, Ravenclaw was said to have Veela in her line.

"Who is the current head of the House of Black?"

"Begging your pardon sir," Remus spoke up, "there is none officially."

"What?" surely the House of Black couldn't have dwindled so drastically.

Remus steeled himself, "Currently, the only surviving son of the House of Black besides yourself sir is my school friend your namesake. He…was falsely accused of betraying your descendant James Potter whose mother was your grandniece. He was sent to Azkaban without trial, he escaped, probably saving the life of young Harry and is still on the run. Your namesake is his godfather. His younger brother Regulus died neither betrothed nor bonded thus without issue. His title reverted to his mother since Regulus predeceased his father. The title can only be truly passed to a son according to the entail of its original grant. Though he was blasted off the family tapestry upon his mother's death it reverted to Sirius. Now Gringotts who manages most inheritances doesn't care if he is in Azkaban he is still the closest related male heir to the last holder to the title. They get very upset when a title is stripped from the family entirely such as the whole Dumbledore Debacle back in 1891. Percival, the father tortured and possibly killed three Muggle children who tortured his six-year-old daughter. He was stripped of his title and lost much of his inheritance leaving his wife Kendra to raise Albus, Aberforth and Ariana. She bought a small house with her own money and moved to Godric's Hollow. She was no longer a great lady and was forced to live a life far from what she was accustomed to. Both his mother and sister died tragically soon after his graduation from Hogwarts and he was left with only his younger brother." Remus paused to take a breath and then continued. "Despite his two-year difference in age the brothers couldn't be more difference and Aberforth finished with far less significance. Now Harry as Sirius' godson is named as his heir, I asked the Goblins to put everything that reverted to Sirius due to the fact that most of the males died during the war in Harry's name. The Black inheritance was like I said reverted to Sirius due to the entail that had gone over looked by the Ministry. To keep the Goblins on my sides I warned then that putting it in Harry's name would prevent the Ministry from overstepping their authority again. Currently the title of Lord of the House of Black is in trust for Harry. His voice in the Wizengamot as per ancient custom is that of a Daughter of the House of Black, the previously disinherited and disowned Andromeda. Her daughter Nymphadora followed in the footsteps of her mother's cousin and became an Auror."

"Thanks to this Walburgha my family went Dark? Who is left?"

Lucius counted them off, "Narcissa and Sirius age thirty-four, Bellatrix age thirty-six and Andromeda age thirty-nine. Callidora Black's descendant Neville Longbottom. The Weasleys who descended from Cedrella Black who was Bonded to the current Lord Weasley and was disowned for tying herself and her magic to a 'blood traitor'." He grimaced, "Harry. The descendants of Lucretia Black who was Bonded to Ignatius Prewett. They had one child a squib, who became something called an accountant and married a Muggle. They had a daughter Malfalda who recently started attending Hogwarts and was Sorted into Slytherin. Cassiopeia died two years ago childless. Pollux Black died in 1990 and his cousin Arcturus died mere months later. Most blacks perished during the war. Neither Pollux nor Arcturus took the title because they suffered from injuries they received during the war. I believe they regretted being forced to join the ranks of the Death Eaters. Walburgha ruled her husband and threatened to repossess an inheritance or vault under the archaic laws if they did not join in purifying the Wizarding world from Muggle scum." He paused to breathe before he counted them to himself, "One Potter, one Longbottom, one Prewett, four Blacks, Cedrella had two sons, Arthur, Bilius and oh who was it? Oh yes, Cador. Septimus only became Head of the House of Weasley because his six older brothers died. Bilius died mysteriously, the third I know little about. Arthur was an Auror during the war but was demoted who went on to have seven children; six boys and one girl. Severus do you know of any Weasleys other then Arthur's?"

Severus thought about it, "Bilius had no children. I remember hearing something about Bilius talking about how he'd seen a grim and was going to die."

Remus chuckled, "Oh posh. He saw Padfoot. I told him it was a figment of his drunken mind. He didn't believe me. He had a stroke and died because he believed he was going to die. Foolish sod." He said his voice devoid of jollity.

"Back to whether Cador had children…yes three sons but no daughters. Until Ginevra Weasley there apparently hadn't been a daughter according to Hogwarts at least in seven generations. Cador had twin boys Andret and Branor, called Andy and Bran who were a year behind Bill. Their younger brother Calibom they called Cal and he was in Charlie's year. They were more studious then Fred and George." Severus said thoughtfully. The three were more like Bill and Charlie. Percy was too high strung and tried too hard to be noticed by professors because of his obsession with the rules, therefore he annoyed me. Honestly when it seemed he started taking Head Girl Penelope Clearwater on Hogsmeade Weekends I was surprised. He wasn't very social with his peers, his Seventh Year he seemed to have a personality transplant. I wish I knew why he changed, he had only one friend I noticed prior and that was Oliver Wood. They had nothing to do with each other last year, for a time I thought they were seeing each other."

Lucius put that thought aside, "According to my calculations because of the war there are only nineteen of your descendants; one Potter, one Prewett, one Longbottom, four Black- Draco doesn't count because he's Veela despite his Black bearer, and twelve Weasleys."

"I wonder how Ginevra came about, Weasleys don't have daughters. They trace their line back to Arthur and even Arthur only had sons. According to legend he had Amhar, Gwydre, Llcheu, Loholt, and Duran. Some say the son of his half-sister Morganna Mordred was also his son but legends alter as the years pass and tales are retold." Sirius mused having calmed slightly from his fury at Walburgha. Perhaps, he shouldn't have cut himself from the family.

Severus shrugged, "Molly was a Prewett. She had twin brothers but was the only girl. It is possible that she had a girl,"

Remus snorted, "Oh please, Women don't determine gender even Muggles know that. It's a male thing. If Weasleys only have males what is Ginevra? Is she truly Arthur's child?"

Severus blinked, "You want me to believe Molly cheated? She's been obsessed with Arthur since forever."

"How else do you explain a girl? Unless she blood adopted a child, I don't see how a

Family with a history of only male children dying young managed to have a daughter." Sirius mused, "Very strange, especially when it is said that souls are reborn to the line from which they come."

Severus snorted, "I never understood that."

"That is why if a line dies out it's magic does too. If the Black line dies out there will be no more Chuvash. Just as if the Malfoy family dies out there will be no more Veela. "

"I have a cousin named Xenophilus whose daughter we met briefly, although Luna is not a name appropriate for a descendant of the House of Malfoy. I will be reinstating him as a Malfoy. He lost his claim to it but I can restore it not that he needs it holding the Lovegood seat through his wife. It is strange how many Aunts Molly has still living, both Muriel and Tessie. The Prewett Inheritance is also entailed which is why Septimus speaks for Molly considering her twin brothers Fabian and Gideon died in the war. Arthur has little drive for politics. Neither does his youngest brother for I have heard nothing about him. I suppose the titles with most likely pass to Arthur's sons being that he is the eldest son and the Bondmate of the last child of the previous Lord Prewett."

XoooooX

Harry was glassy-eyes when Draco reached his room; it was as if he'd disappeared into himself. It had been a trying day. He knew he should make Harry eat something but he seriously doubted that Harry could. He removed the dress robe, his hands shook too much and he was shy. He Draco Malfoy was too shy to do something he would do for Blaise without a thought. Then he remembered what the Veela Seer said, Harry was his mate? It was rare that a Veela didn't take a human or another Veela for it's mate. He was mating outside his own kind. It didn't matter if his mother's family had Chuvash in it he was Veela. He couldn't undress him, it was wrong not without Harry's consent. He touched his wand and switched the nice clothes for a pair of his own nightclothes. He changed himself after levitating the quiet boy and turning back the sheets. Unable to hold himself back he climbed into bed with the tiny Gryffindor, with no thought of eating dinner himself he lay arms around Harry's waist and his face pressed into the boy's neck.

He felt at peace and content as he held onto his former adversary all thoughts of dueling or cross words forgotten.

XoooooX

The four; Lucius, Severus, Remus and Sirius I talked long into the night making plans how to deal with Harry's predicament as a Triwizard Champion.

The house elves delivering dinner, coffee, whiskey and cakes as they absently requested.

Two hours from dark they broke yawning.

Lucius took Severus' arm gently, leading the way to the next floor.

Remus reluctantly parted from his mate.

Sirius was shown to his room by his host.

Quietly they yawned as they bid each other good night.

The plan that they hatched would shock the Minister of Magic and the Headmaster.

XoooooX

Lucius pulled Severus into their room, locking the door. It was late but he needed to be as close to one with his mate as he could.

Severus felt Lucius pull him tight, and couldn't stifle a moan as he was kissed roughly. He didn't like being told he had to let someone else into his bed and heart.

Lucius' hand crawled, caressed and groped Severus' body, grinding against him as they made their way to bed. "Mine."

Severus kissed him back, "Yes..." other then Lucius' one night with that woman they had been faithful. The mark may keep them from bonding as a Veela and their mate were supposed to but his body was still Lucius'.

Lucius shoved his mate on the bed.

Severus could sense the primal need radiating off his Bondmate, his own desires reflected in Lucius' eyes. He still belonged to his old friend.

Lucius cast a lubrication charm and then thrust roughly into Severus' body.

Severus whimpered but felt his cock stiffen in need, "Yes. Harder. Lucius..."

Lucius needed to lay claim to his mate, to stake a claim. Without access to his Veela, he couldn't transform, he couldn't mark his mate and he couldn't heal the damage Severus' abusive parents had caused.

Severus rocked back into the deep penetrating thrusts, "Yes!"

Lucius scratched and bit, his Veela hungered for it but his creature side trapped he had little outlet.

They came screaming their climax.

XoooooX

Remus stripped and crawled into bed, his mate...

Severus was truly his mate...

How to learn to share with a protective Veela?

He reached down, thinking about how good looking his mate was when they visited the Veela Queen. He had random flashbacks to the times Sirius and James used the levicorpus spell Severus created. He remembered how firm and touchable that arse looked. He had an overwhelming urge to touch it, fondle it, hell even spank it. He might even enjoy watching Severus squirm as he ate him.

He pinched his nipples, wrapped his hand around his cock and began to wank. He rarely afforded himself this luxury especially when his desired mate belonged to another but Severus was half his. He could desire him and wish to lay claim to that pale body, to kiss and lick every scar as he memorized each spot that gave his mate pleasure. He wanted to kiss him and take him to bed. How could he discuss sharing such a talented and beautiful man with a protective, jealous and possessive Veela?

His mind filled with memories of Severus he came with a loud groan, taking a few breathes to steady himself before vanishing the mess and drifting off to sleep.

What do you think their plan is?

What do you think? Outstanding? Exceeds Expectations? Acceptable? Poor? Troll?

Chapter Text

Chapter 12

 

Harry woke up and for the first time in his life he felt safe. He was warm and he felt the gentleness in the arms that wrapped around his waist. He smiled, sleepily reaching to cover Draco's hand with his own.

Draco's breath on his neck was warm. He had no memory of being held like this, he knew he had parents at some point who had by all accounts loved him but he still had never been held like this. He'd never had anyone hold him when he cried or worry about him when he was ill before he woke up here with Severus watching him. He'd fallen asleep crying after receiving Ron and Hermione's letters. He'd really thought they were his friends. He thought back to his second meeting with Draco on the train, he pushed the thought of his haughty tone away and focused on the words.

"You'll soon find out some Wizarding families are much better than others, Potter. You don't want to go making friends with the wrong sort. I can help you there."

"Be careful who you choose then. Choose riffraff and Blood traitors you'll turn out just like them…"

"Well if you're going to choose people like Weasleys who have lots of red-hair, no money and second-hand everything over your own kind then to hell with you."

He was right…

The Weasleys did have no money, red hair and second-hand everything. Ron was rotten if he was just pretending to be his friend. Ron was the wrong sort of friend. Some Wizarding families were better then others just look at Severus and Lucius they weren't even supposed to like him, they were Death Eaters and they did more to help him then the Weasleys who claimed to care for him.

His eyes filled with tears, how could he have been so stupid? He'd thought Hermione out of both of them was a true friend. He saved her…granted he locked her in with the troll but he did save her from it in the end. Did she blame him for that? It wasn't his idea really to go after the Sorcerer's stone or to go searching for the Chamber of Secrets. He just didn't want to be called a coward. He shook with silent sobs for the loss of a friendship that might have always been one-sided.

"Harry? What's wrong? A nightmare? It's okay I'm here. You're not alone."

Those simple comforting words broke something inside him and he let out a strangled cry that sounds as it something was dying.

It was sound of a boy who lost everything he thought he had.

"Hush now. It's alright. You're safe." Draco gently rolled Harry over to face him.

Harry buried his tear stained face in Draco's pajama shirt. "Why? Why would they pretend to be my friends? Why would they think I would cheat? I was too frightened to even consider trying to enter. People died in that Tournament! I don't want to be a Champion. I just want to be a normal kid. I don't want to be in danger all the time."

His Veela might not be awakened but Draco silently swore an oath on his magic to do everything he could to keep Harry Potter safe. He rocked him, "I don't know why they would do that. I knew from the beginning that that Weasley wasn't trustworthy but I didn't think he would be so cruel." Ron Weasley was a Weasley and a Gryffindor at that; they weren't supposed to have friendships that weren't friendships. What would convince him to commit such a farce? Granted 'friendships' to a Slytherin were very different from ones formed by other people. He was 'friends' with Crabbe and Goyle but he didn't trust them at all. Well other then to watch his back against threats from non-Slytherins. He wasn't friends with Pansy but she didn't know that. He didn't trust Theo at all his father was almost manically devoted to the Dark Lord. Out of all his housemates he probably trusted Blaise the most, not that he would admit it. With Blaise he always knew where he stood. Blaise mentioned that he wanted to know when he was coming back because he owed him money and two chess matches. He'd let him know when but only when he knew himself.

Harry let Draco comfort and soothe him; there was something so completely genuine about how nice Draco was to him. It was a bit shocking to remember that this boy who could barely say anything nice before November first had quickly become his constant companion, his tutor and his friend. That Luna said Draco would be his mate? Mate…

He felt as Harry started to relax, he rubbed his back, "Why don't we go see about breakfast? Neither of us ate dinner and because we were summoned by the Veela Queen we didn't have tea."

Harry's stomach took that moment to decide to growl and he blushed, "I guess I'm hungry."

Draco felt the urge to preen for guessing what his mate needed but pushed it away, "Come on, let's just put on robes and go get something to eat. We're too hungry to worry about dressing."

Harry glanced down and realized that he wasn't wearing the fine clothes from his visit to the Veela Court. He blushed deeper, "Did you,"

Draco shook his head, "I just used a switching charm. I didn't think you'd be comfortable if I undressed you myself."

"But I'm supposed to be your mate…" Harry said confused, he remembered Uncle Vernon denouncing poufs as useless freaks better off dead just as much as his lot- wizards. He accepted that Draco's father and Severus were a couple but he still wasn't sure whether it was truly okay to be a pouf.

"Just because that's in the future doesn't mean at fourteen I get to take liberties. Besides, if Dad can't get you out of the Tournament I say you flout tradition and let me be your date to the Yule Ball. You may be my mate but that doesn't mean I can't court you and spend two years proving I'm worthy of you before your Chuvash goes into heat and calls for me to satisfy you and help you conceive a child." Draco teased.

Harry gulped, Courted? He'd have to look that up but his new friend seemed so serious. "You mean you want us to date and get to know each other before our hormones run wild?" Heat? Called Draco to satisfy him and quench the fire inside him? What was he talking about? He'd have to talk to that Chuvash they'd met yesterday, if he could find him. Surely Mr. Black could answer his questions, like why he had the same name as his godfather…

Draco laughed, "That's one way to put it. Come on let's get you some food before you lose anymore weight and we end up backtracking on all the progress you've made."

They rose, put on robes and went to find some breakfast.

XoooooX

Lucius woke to find Severus' head resting on his chest; the Glamour his mate usually wore was nowhere in sight. He played with the black hair that tickled his skin as the Potions Master breathed and snored softly. Not that Severus would ever admit to snoring.

How could he share him? His Bondmate, his mate, the one he'd ached for all these years. It didn't matter that they were intimate his Veela longed to be free. It had been rattling at its chains for years. As he felt the scars on his mate's skin he wished in vain for his Veela to be able to heal the scars and badly healed bones. Why? Why had it been so imperative that he became a Death Eater? He railed silently against his dead father, at times he hated the man and had been perversely pleased to watch the man suffer when he came down with Dragon pox. Somehow the inoculation didn't take. Draco had been alive then but he refused to allow his son in Abraxus' sickroom. He wanted the man to suffer as he had.

His Veela was furious about having to share his mate and honestly he wasn't thrilled about it either. To add insult to injury his Severus' other mate was a Dark Magical Creature. To permit that person to touch someone as perfect in spirit and love was just cruel. His Veela understood why Severus took the mark and forgave him for but Lucius suffered from severe self-recrimination for allowing himself to be sullied by Darkness.

He could feel the pressure of Severus' morning wood, it's familiar presence made it harder to believe that his mate wasn't just his alone. He ran his nails up Severus' spine and back down to his arse where he fondled it.

XoooooX

Severus moaned in his sleep, snuggling closer to Lucius.

XoooooX

Lucius spread Severus’ thighs, pulling his mate closer so his prick rested against the younger man’s entrance. He kissed Severus’ neck, stroking him as he reached for his wand to cast the charms he needed.

Severus woke with a gasp as he felt charms preparing him and the familiar pressure of his mate’s prick on his arsehole. He clung to Lucius’ with his thighs, arching back eager to feel his mate inside him, moaning in French. “Je te voux. Baise-moi!” (I want you. Fuck me!)

Lucius felt his prick sink into Severus’ arse a little and thrust in deep. “Comme te veux” (As you like.)

Severus clung to him, kissing him hard, muttering in French, “Baise-moi!” (Fuck me!)

Lucius chuckled, kissing him back, “Tu me rends fou.” (You drive me fucking crazy)

Severus arched, rocking into his mate’s deep thrusts, “Yes.”

Lucius loved the freedom of waking up to make love, it was especially rare during the school year.

Severus came hard screaming his climax.

Lucius came as he felt Severus’ cum splashing him;

Severus blushed, laying there gasping as he felt his own cum covering himself and Lucius. His mate had come hard; he could feel it dripping out of him.

Lucius carried him into the bathroom where they went for another round of sex in the shower before finally washing, and dressing.

Before heading down to breakfast, Lucius rapped on Remus' door. They would have this out now without witnesses.

XoooooX

Remus woke at once to the loud banging on his door. He could smell the faint smell of sex and potion ingredients. He cast a refreshing charm on himself and summoned a pair of trousers. He wouldn't greet Lucius and Severus smelling of dried spunk and naked. He opened the door and attempted to smile, "I just wanted to be presentable."

Lucius strode past him.

Remus noticed Severus seemed nervous to be in his company. He gestured for them to sit on the bed after he used a charm to make it properly, "I'll just sit here." He said quietly as he turned a comfortable armchair to face the bed. Lucius was probably coming to discuss the mate issue and he wasn't going to make things worse by talking about it while sitting on his bed. It was impolite.

"I know you said you wouldn't come between us when you admitted your wolf wanted Severus as your mate." Lucius addressed him after he was seated comfortably on the recently vacated and made bed.

Remus nodded, "I still don't. He was your mate before he was mine and I know he cares for you deeply. To try to separate you would be cruel."

Severus glared, "Don't talk about me like I'm not here."

Remus coloured, "Sorry, I was merely trying to state my intentions not to make you feel as if we were ignoring you. I could never ignore you, I'm sure Lucius is as acutely aware of your presence as I am."

Lucius sneered pulling Severus closer, "I am always aware of my mate, not as well as I would be if my Veela were free to claim him."

Severus pushed him back, moving over slightly to give himself physical space. It was hard to think with Lucius so close especially after two rounds of sex. "I am yours Lucius but we need to talk and I need some space so I can concentrate fully. I have the right to have input since it's my fault I have two mates."

Lucius was not happy about Severus pushing him away in front of the werewolf but his mate had a slight point. "Why is any of this your fault?" Severus believed this was his fault? He thought Severus had grown away from being things that couldn't be blamed on him were his fault.

Severus sighed, "Because my magic is so strong I need two mates to ground me?"

"That's not your fault!" Lucius glared, "How could you be at fault? It's not like you seduced the wolf!"

Remus winced. "Until last year when I was a fellow professor Severus and I had no contact since Lily and James died. All he did for me was brew my Wolfsbane Potion. I never pursued him because he made it quite clear he couldn't stand me. He made it impossible for me to continue on as a Professor and I had to resign. I never felt the need to be angry with him for that. My behaviour wasn't seemly as a professor, I didn't inform anyone when I found,"

He didn't wish to confuse his old friend with their new ally though they shared the same name and chose a difference name to refer to him, "Padfoot. I left the map out where anyone could read it. Severus may not have had entirely pure motives but he was worried because it was a full moon and I might have hurt my students. As far as he knew I had been working with Padfoot all along. I went to find Wormtail and prove that Padfoot was innocent. Wormtail escaped because I didn't take my potion, if I had gone for help that wouldn't have happened. Until you sent Aurors to look for me and I came here I had no contact with Severus since I left Hogwarts. The moment I found out you were Bonded I knew that Severus wasn't mine to pursue. I would like to have a piece of his heart but since he's been with you all these years I don't want to cause trouble. It's not fair to force you to share him Lucius just because some seer claims he's half mine."

"She's not some seer, she is a Veela Seer and that puts her at nearly the same level as a centaur." Lucius protested haughtily. "Besides, that Seer is my cousin and the Queen trusts her words. If they both claim that I am supposed to share my mate with a Werewolf I have to."

"I don't know much about Triad Bondings…" Remus began, slowly. Knowing what he did about magical creatures, a werewolf was about as opposite of a Veela as you could get. "but I have no objection if you as his primary mate are the only one he is legally bound to. I wouldn't dare attempt a sexual advance without your knowledge. I don't know how we would learn to share if that is what Severus agrees to. I know you wouldn't leave me alone with him, I wouldn't ask you to but as difficult as it would be for me to watch you pleasure him I can only guess how you would feel about it. To you I am an interloper and I understand that. I don't want us to rush into this it will take time. Perhaps, we should start by trying to find a way to reverse, remove or at least lessen the curse's effects. If I can give Severus something back perhaps, I will prove that I belong with you, both of you. Your Dark Marks, I want to help remove those as well. It would be cruel of me to lay complete claim to Severus before your Veela can. You were together first and you deserve to Bond to your mate properly before I do."

Once again Remus' selflessness surprised Lucius, "Though your wolf is free to claim Severus and not chained like my Veela you would restrain yourself until my Veela is free?"

Remus nodded.

"You'll help Lucius' Veela be freed so our magic can be bound together completely? You'd promise to help find away to give me back the way to have a child? Why would you want to have a relationship with someone is incapable of having a child? I let someone kill my baby!" his voice cracked and he shook, they should hate him.

Before Remus realized he'd moved, he was beside Severus.

They were both trying to comfort their mate, Lucius understood that but it infuriated him to see Remus touch his Severus. "You were young and scared, Sev. It wasn't your fault. You didn't know you wouldn't be alone. He forced you to do these. He stole not only your child, I mean our child but also your ability to have another. He knew you were the last of your line and he wanted to prevent you from continuing it. As if his letting Potter and Black hurt you wasn't cruel enough."

"He'll pay. We'll make sure of it. No one has the right to decide who should have children and who can't." Remus said an edge in his voice; "No one had the right to take your child from you or to take away your ability to have children."

Severus couldn't explain the feelings of safety and contentment that he had with Remus and Lucius holding him, comforting. He felt as if something more then gratitude and hatred had sprung up in his breast for Remus. He was embarrassed about his thinking about Remus while he and Lucius were being intimate but the genuinely honest offers and promises the werewolf was making before touched him. Remus maybe a werewolf but he was gentle, gentle in a way that Lucius was not. Lucius was abrupt and rough but he cared and wormed his way into his heart even before the older Slytherin's Veela decided they were mates. He would be terribly embarrassed if any of his students saw how weak he was right now…

Lucius kissed his hair, "We should eat. I have to summon Percy Weasley; he is Crouch's assistant and has helped immensely set up this blasted tournament. He might be able to help, plus there is that whole issue about what Severus mentioned regarding his abrupt change in personality. I am sure that blasted Headmaster had something to do with it."

XoooooX

Harry and Draco just barely finished eating when the Chuvash entered.

Harry thought for someone so old he didn't look it. Wasn't he supposed to be older then Dumbledore? His face wasn't wrinkled and his hair just seemed to get silver streaks in the thick black strands. His godfather and this man did resemble each other.

"Well now, if it isn't my adorable little great something nephew? It would be my honour to make your acquaintances, Sirius Black the first as I understand. I believe you are related to me by your grandmother, Dorea I believe they said her name was."

Harry stammered, "I'm sorry but what is a Chuvash? I've never heard of them…"

Sirius laughed, "It seems your education has been found wanting little one but I shall tell you. Chuvash are Magical Creatures believed to be related to dragons. They are reptilian in appearance and stand on two feet. Like dragons they have wings on their backs, but unlike many dragons their wings are brightly scaled in a variety of colours rather then just one. They are omnivores but prefer fresh meat and they have very long life spans. Chuvash are considered shape shifters and are believed have been around about as long as dragons have been. They are highly intelligent with an inborn talent at Transfiguration and are very may choose to blend in with wizards by spending most of their lives as humans. Many of them have careers in which they can pursue their own interests; such as raising rare snakes with whom they can communicate or working with Dragons for which they have a natural affinity. Others choose to go into retrieval or rare potions ingredients or hunting Dragons for skin, blood and heartstrings for wands. Though another Chuvash can scent a Chuvash at birth as can a Veela, most Chuvash aren't known until they come into their inheritance unless they exhibit signs such as speaking and understanding Parseltongue or even speaking to dragons. Nearly all Chuvash young display an inborn talent to fly and a resistance to spells."

His voice took a more serious tone, "When you come into your inheritance if your mate young Mister Malfoy hasn't healed your scars and broken bones that I sense have weakened your magic's stability you will find when you come into your inheritance that you will have healed. Since few Chuvash have any physical infirmities until late in life I expect that you will find you no longer need those spectacles.

Harry gasped, "I won't need my glasses?" then the word submissive dawned on him, "What is a submissive?"

Sirius' lips twitched, "Well when Chuvash come into their inheritance you see either they are a dominant like me, I am nearly eight feet tall in Chuvash form and the external scales of my wings are a mix of stormy grey, black and dark blue covering overlaying a wingspan of over thirty feet. In Chuvash form I have talons rather then hands and feet." He removed his Glamour and allowed his hands to shift to show them, "You see, my skin isn't skin at all, it is more like scales, it helps with our natural spell resistance. It appears as skin except at close examination and like Dragon hide it can repel spells. It unnerves Wizarding folk and since we are rare and some rather nasty characters try to obtain our scale-like skin for a variety of reasons when we are amoung the Wizarding Community we use Glamours. Since you will a submissive, your scales and wings will be more demure colours, probably not a true white perhaps a soft somber gray. If you were mated to a Chuvash, your the scale-like skin on your left shoulder would change to match the pattern of your mate's wing scales. Considering you are the first Chuvash since probably Arthur to be mated to a Veela I seriously doubt your scales will change colours unless of course and I haven't truly seen a Veela in their glory to know if their wings have colour. I hope for your sake that they do, otherwise unmated Dominant CHuvash will no doubt forcefully pursue you. If Veelas are anywhere near as possessive as we are, you Mister Malfoy will not take that well."

Draco scowled; the very idea of anyone pursuing his Harry upset him.

"A Submissive is the bearer of any children conceived." Sirius began gently.

"Men can have babies?" Harry was shocked, he'd never heard of such a thing.

"Only wizards and those with magical creature blood which probably is where it came from in the first place. Though not as many wizard couples have children now, more and more couples are finding themselves infertile sadly. Either that or their Bondings were arranged and they can't stand each other enough to have another child after the heir is born."

Harry nodded, "I see." A baby? A child of his own, could he really have one? Or had the Dursleys made that impossible? He doubted his inheritance could heal that…

Draco saw the sadness in his eyes and reached for his hand, as long as there was still breath in his body no one was going lay a hand to cause him pain again.

Harry tried to smile when he felt Draco's hand cover his own. "Is there anything else I need to know about my future inheritance?"

Sirius shook his head, "No child. I'll explain more when you get closer to your sixteenth birthday. Although I'm sure your mate and I will have a nice long talk. I happen to have an adorable male submissive myself; I don't need to tell you Young Malfoy how rare a jewel your Harry is."

After all he'd been through, Harry was shy, sweet and sensitive. Harry rarely if ever lost his temper especially if he himself wasn't trying to start a fight.

Harry blushed, a rare jewel? Him? He liked this Sirius a lot more then his godfather who was a rather intimidating person.

What do you think their plan is?

Chapter Text

Title: Unlikely Heroes

Pairing: Future DracoxHarry, LuciusxSeverus, one-sided RemusxSeverus

Fandom: Harry Potter

Summary: A battered Boy Who Lived finds his world come crashing down when his name comes out of the Goblet of Fire. Shockingly, the only ones to come to his rescue are those he'd believed were his enemies.

Notes: Is compatible to the Selection of Triwizard Champions.

Chapter 12

After breakfast and the intimate discussion between himself, Severus and Remus Lucius owled Percy Weasley and insisted he bring a copy of the complete rules and regulations regarding the Triwizard Tournament.

It was almost lunch time when Treca announced Percy Weasley from the Ministry.

Harry and Draco were off brewing probably, the adults had chosen to give them space after last night. Today was about making new allies and acquiring information.

Lucius gestured for his visitor to take a chair across from him, “Sit down Weasley. We have much to talk about.”

Percy entered slowly; he didn’t like to be alone with powerful men. “I brought the information you asked for. I don’t know why you need it.”

“We have more to discuss then just the Tournament. You’re welcome to leave the door open and check for any listening or recording spells. I assure you that the tea has nothing in it.”

“No Veritaserum?” Percy asked weakly and silently cursed himself.

“No,” Severus said speaking up from his corner, “Let’s just say we leave such distasteful tactics with their master the Headmaster.” his voice quivering slightly.

“Sounds like you don’t think much of him.”

“Hard to when he thinks he owns me. He likes to brag that he made me a spy, I offered myself. I hate him for what he did to me.”

Percy felt the sorrow in that voice, Snape was very different from what he remembered. “What did he do, if you don’t mind me asking.”

“He murdered my child and cursed me barren.”

Lucius was surprised, as was Remus that Severus admitted it to this possibly untrustworthy person.

Percy started to shake, something half-forgotten teased the edge of his memory. “Why? Why would he do that?”

Their guests’ magic became momentarily unstable and the four adults noticed it: the faint echo of the imperious and an obscure memory charm.

“When were you alone with the Headmaster?” Severus asked quietly.

“He called me up after Harry and Ron rescued Ginny from the Chamber of Secrets. He wanted to ask how we were if she was alright. He mentioned that I was being considered for Head Boy and wondered how well I got along with Prefect Clearwater. Then…it gets fuzzy.”

“Who is your best friend?” Remus asked.

Percy glanced at him, dumbfounded, “I…I don’t have one.”

“What about Oliver?” Severus asked, “You used to always study together in the library. You were often partners in potions or projects.”

Percy frowned, “That Quidditch obsessed git? Never.” Why did that feel like a lie? It wasn’t was it?

“Did you know you bear the echoes of the Imperious and memory charms?” Remus asked.

Percy shook his head, “Not possible.” Would that explain his fuzzy memories?

“Would you like them removed?”

Did he? Did he want someone mucking about in his brain?

“How can I trust you? You’re Death Eaters and a werewolf. Then there is that silent one over there.”

“My name,” Sirius said quietly “is Sirius Black the first and I was born before the Headmaster. My brother was Phineas Nigellus Black.”

“Shouldn’t you be dead? You don’t even look that old.” Percy said dumbfounded, recently growing arrogance vanished.

“I have Chuvash blood, I am the leader of those people. I have come because one of my people is in mortal danger.” Sirius said in the same low, non-threatening voice.

“Your people? Mortal danger?”

Sirius nodded, “You see, they were entered in your little tournament against their will. A person with Active Magical creature blood cannot enter a legally binding Magical contract without the permission of the leader of their people.”

Percy’s eyes narrowed, “You mean you’re here because of Cheater Potter?”

Sirius snapped, “I smell lies and that boy did not enter that tournament. He is terrified of it. Besides, even young Chuvash years from coming into their inheritance is under my protection. He is a descendant of my brother which makes him family.”

“My apologies sir. What’s this nonsense about me having echoes of past magic?” Percy asked changing the subject, not sure he trusted them.

Severus sighed, “You have twelve Outstanding N.E.W.Ts and you’re telling me that you don’t know that certain magic leaves echoes?”

Percy flushed, “I know that but who would cast an Unforgivable on me and get away with it? They’re supposed to be illegal and casting them can get you sent to Azkaban.”

“The curse he cast on me was illegal too, it stole my chance at a family. I am the last of my line, the last of the Princes. If I can neither sire nor bear children my entire line and our magic will die.” Severus continued.

Percy collapsed in his chair, “I stopped completely trusting the headmaster especially after he made me Head Boy. I don’t know why but deep down despite what mother says, you see he makes me uncomfortable.”

“Do you want me to give you back your memories?”

Percy nodded, “Even if it hurts me I need to know why and what he did.”

Severus nodded, standing and walking towards him, his robe billowing like black wings. He knelt and whispering, “Legimens.”

Percy stiffened, unable to push him out and he couldn’t move.

‘You’re safe. I’m only going to release the memories.’ True to his word Severus moved around not even opening the books that manifested Percy’s memories. He found a corner of the library in Percy’s mind, that was half hidden in shadow and seemed to be covered in dust and rot but was full of ‘books’ that weren’t half as old as they appeared. Severus whispered a spell that made the shadow retreat that was the manifesting of the memory charm that made Percy forget these memories existed, another that dissolved the Imperious not before Severus could see the memory that both spells were entwined in.

Dumbledore was sitting behind his desk, “Come in Weasley, so good of you to come so promptly. Tell me how is your sister doing? Is she recovering from her terrifying experience? Poor thing. It really is dreadful that she’ll have to serve those detentions. She really wasn’t in control of her actions entirely but students were attacked.”

 

Percy nodded dismally, his emotions and magic had been rather out of sorts since then and if it were for Oliver he’d had broken down by now.

 

“Have some tea.”

 

Percy nervously took a cup, sipping it slowly.

 

“Tell me about your lessons and plans for next year.”

 

Percy found himself admitting far more then he intended including his hope that when he got a job at the ministry he and Oliver could find an inexpensive apartment to share.

 

“Oliver? Oliver Wood?” Dumbledore asked, his voice loosing all of it cheer.

 

Percy swallowed, looking up to see hard, cold eyes and nodded, “He’s my…boyfriend.”

 

Dumbledore stood up quickly, “This won’t do. No, this won’t do at all.”

 

Before he could move or think…

 

“Imperio. Now listen you little ingrate. You’re a Weasley, you’re going into the Ministry and that Quidditch obsessed idiot is just going to hold you back. You will forget about him and have nothing more to do with him. Now when you receive your badge as Head Boy you’ll find out that Prefect Penelope Clearwater is Head Girl. You will befriend her and Court her. She will make an excellent political wife when you start your rise to Ministry of Magic. What the!”

 

Dumbledore stopped in his tirade to cast diagnostic spells on Percy, “Merlin! You little slut! What kind of school do you think I’m running here? I’ll teach you to dare have sex at Hogwarts! Mortis fetus!”

 

Percy felt ill, his abdomen cramping. Fetus? Baby? He’d been pregnant? No! No! NO!

 

“Somes expello! Now you will forget this all occurred. There was no child. You have no lover. You have no friends. You are a rule-obsessed prat whose one wish is to become Minister for Magic. You have no patience for rule-breakers and people who are too lazy to study. Above all you HATE Quidditch and those who play it because deep down you are jealous because you have no skill of your own.”

 

After Dumbledore calmed down, he cast a sleep spell on Percy. The next thing he remembered was being woken up and told he’d dozed off.

 

Embarrassed he’d apologized and left, horrified he’d fallen asleep in an interview with the Headmaster. Deep down he no longer trusted him and never would…

 

Severus was highly embarrassed when he extricated himself from Percy’s mind. Instead of ‘I’m sorry for seeing that memory’ being the first words on his lips, he pulled the shocked young man to him, “It’s okay it’s not your fault.”

Percy hadn’t cried in years but that memory broke him. Dumbledore…the reason he couldn’t trust him and avoided him was because he stole his dreams of a future. Dumbledore stole his lover, his best friend and their child. He sobbed, “I want him. I want Ollie.”

Remus, Lucius and Sirius turned away, whatever private memory Severus released it wasn’t right to pry.

After ten minutes Percy pulled away, banished all trace of his tears, “Tell me what you need me to do. I want a piece of him. If it weren’t for you, I wouldn’t know what he did to me, to us...”

“Tell us what they are doing about the tournament.” Lucius was curious and working in the International Relations Department with Crouch Percy would have the most current information.

“They keep postponing the Weighing of the Wand Ceremony because all Champions must be present. Beauxbatons and Durmstrang still threaten to leave to which Moody and Crouch tell them they are magically bound to stay. The Daily Prophet keeps clamouring for an interview but with a missing Champion they have to put them off. The First Task you see is scheduled for the 24 of this month. The longer Harry is gone the less time they all have to prepare.” Percy said quickly, he owed them a debt and he would do all he could to repay it.

Lucius nodded, “I see. So if we can’t get him out of the contract prior to that date we will have to allow him to complete.”

“I won’t allow it.” Remus and Sirius snarled in unison.

Percy shifted nervously, “Tell me how you plan to get the so-called Cheater Potter out of a magical contract.”

“First off he’d underage and can’t enter a contract without permission of his guardian. At the time of his supposed entrance he was legally though unfiled the ward of Sirius Black the third. Sirius wasn’t in the position to grant that permission because he was on the run. Harry didn’t enter his name in the Goblet of Fire. According to the case of Athens Peverell vs. Alphard Minias from 1790, a Betrothal Contract between Athens Peverell and Hera Minias was declared invalid because it had been forged. The Contract between Troyus Peverell and Lord Caden Black was deemed the only valid contract, thus Athens Peverell and Amaryllis Black were bonded. If a forged betrothal contract cannot be held valid then if Harry’s name was added to the Goblet of Fire without his knowledge or the consent of his guardian Sirius Black III or Sirius Black I, leader of the Dracken then he isn’t bound by a contract he didn’t enter. They can argue that Harry didn’t know he had to ask permission of the leader of the Dracken because he didn’t know he was one but it makes no difference. Legally he cannot be forced to participate.” Lucius said before pausing to pour himself a drink.

“What I don’t get is how exactly someone could have gotten close enough to confound the Goblet of Fire to convince it there were four schools.” Percy said quickly.

Severus was surprised, “Where did you hear that?”

Percy stared at him, “Professor Moody. He claimed it was once his job to think as Dark Wizards do when Headmaster Karkaroff asked him how he knew that happened.”

“Well as powerful as he is, I doubt Harry has the ability to confound a Magical Artefact as old and as powerful as the Goblet of Fire. He wouldn’t have even considered it. Besides, he is not old enough to cross that Age Line. An aging potion didn’t even work and if Harry used it he would have sprouted a beard. I watched the names being put in the Goblet, Harry never approached it and I never saw him approach anyone old enough to enter prior to putting their name in. In fact he looked surprised that Angelina Johnson was old enough. Out of everyone who entered he knew her the best. Unless the person used the Imperious I don’t see how his name got in. I know the ward that sends out an alarm to the Ministry about use of Unforgivable Curses isn’t working because otherwise they would have known about the casting of the Imperious on Percy Weasley.” Severus mused. “It is more likely that a Durmstrang student who is taught neutral and sometimes Darkish magic was placed under the Imperious to enter Harry’s name as well as their own but it would be hard to prove.”

A swan flew in through the cracked window and landed on the arm of Severus’ chair.

Confused he took the letter and the bird disappeared as quickly as it came. He read it.

Professor,

 

Do not attempt to deal with the Infertility Curse until the Marks have been dealt. Only

Harry Potter can affect them, tell him to speak to them. You must also be magically

bond to both of your mates prior to attempting to affect the curse.

 

Luna

Severus read it a few times before sending it silently to Lucius to read and gesturing that Remus should read it as well.

“When are you and the boys returning to Hogwarts?” Percy asked not rude enough to ask what the letter was about.

“The day after tomorrow I think. We need to have Andromeda summon the Wizengamot to hear our case regarding Harry’s release from an improper Magical Contract. Dumbledore and Crouch will no doubt be present as well as Fudge. We’ll be petitioning Madam Bones the head of Magical Law Enforcement. Ted can enter Harry’s memories regarding the Tournament that prove he didn’t enter the Tournament. If this works it will hopefully have Harry out of the Tournament. We also have the leader of Harry’s people on our side. If they don’t believe that he has the right to prevent Harry’s participation we can bring up Mademoiselle Delacour’s sister and herself having to request permission from the Veela Queen to participate because they would be put in some amount of danger.” Severus replied.

Lucius continued, “Dumbledore will have a fit when he realizes that Remus and I will both be staying in Severus’ quarters. I’m not sure I trust Remus in Severus’ bed yet but I’m not cruel enough to tell him to sleep on the floor. I’m sure he can transfigure a chair into a cot or something.”

Remus’ wolf was furious but Remus dipped his head in acceptance as Moony raged. The fact that he was going to be allowed to stay in their bedroom at Hogwarts was more then he’d expected.

“How can I help?” Percy asked.

“By being our eyes and ears in the Ministry.” Lucius began. “We’ll see about approaching Oliver. No doubt he suffered a similar fate and his memories locked away. Memories of a love affair that resulted in children cannot be erased only hidden and are easily broken. Your child whether you knew it or not bound you and your Oliver together making a permanent impression in both your memory and your magic. Do not approach Oliver until we tell you.”

Percy missed his lover so much and wanted to tell him about their child but he couldn’t. He would wait; he didn’t want Oliver to think he was mad if his memories had been locked away as well. Besides, the prudent thing would be to allow Dumbledore to live in ignorance.

 

 

Chapter Text

Chapter thirteen

 

Lucius had through and with an agreeable Andromeda called for a special session of Judicial Council led by Madam Bones, Head of Magical Law Enforcement.

Their witnesses would be Mind Healer Ted Tonks whose creditability undisputable, Harry himself, Draco and Severus. Hopefully they wouldn’t need Sirius Black I, the Leader of the Chuvash people.

It was a very sombre party that were about to enter the Ministry.

Lucius called the Daily Prophet, Witch Weekly and even the Quibbler to the Ministry promising them a remarkable story.

The reporters were crowding the Atrium and the Ministry staff was trying to evict them when Lucius and his party entered the Ministry.

“Lord Malfoy what is this?”

“Lord Malfoy and Harry Potter?”

“Is it true that Harry Potter is the Fourth Champion?”

“Harry, tell us how you got your name in the Goblet of Fire.”

Lucius held up his hand, “Please you’ve frighten him. He isn’t used to such attention. He’s lived a quiet life away from the Magical World and I ask that you listen to me.”

The reporters’ voices died down.

“I am here to protest Harry Potter’s illegal status as a Champion. To be eligible you must enter your name in the Goblet yourself. I have it on the excellent authority of my former brother by Bonding Ted Tonks Britain’s Premier Mind Healer. Severus Prince-Malfoy,”

Lucius said with pride, “my Bondmate,” ignoring the shocked voices of the reporters, “the Head of Slytherin and friend of Harry’s mother from childhood will swear that Harry was both shocked and horrified when his name came out of the Goblet of Fire. Harry’s rival Seeker Draco, my son will also testify to the same. Our family’s personal Healer Thaddeus Smythe will testify that Harry was in a near comatose state of shock,”

Lucius stated firmly, “not a faint that was an attempt to avoid punishment for cheating that has been assumed. Harry has suffered I’m sure you all know from the dreadful things that have happened at Hogwarts since he started. A Mountain Troll that nearly killed him and two other First Years. Then a dreadful mad professor tried to jinx his broom nearly killing him. The next year a Bludger went rogue and nearly killed both Harry and my son. Poor Gilderoy Lockhart, through a slight mispronunciation managed to banish all the bones in one of his arms that day. Anyone who has had to have a bone regrown can understand the pain he suffered that night. The Chamber of Secrets was somehow opened and many Muggleborns were in danger including young Harry’s best friend Miss Granger. His other best friend Ronald Weasley, grandson of Lord Weasley’s sister was taken into the Chamber of Secrets. We can only imagine what horrors he must have endured to save her. Then the next year we all know that Sirius Black escaped, he managed to get into Hogwarts, slashing the portrait guardian and later the bed curtains of Harry’s friend Ron. Later Black kidnapped Ron; can you imagine his terror? His best friend kidnapped by the man he was told was responsible for the betrayal and murder of his parents?”

Lucius avoided actually claiming Black was guilty and smirked to himself before continuing, “This poor boy has suffered enough don’t you think? How would you feel of all these things happened to your son? We ask only for justice for this poor boy who has been accused of cheating to enter a dangerous tournament. We know as the rightful heir to the Houses of Black and Potter he has no need for money. As the Boy Who Lived what need has he for fame? He is the son of heroes, Lily and James who fought against He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named to their last breath, not only to protect their son but also to protect us all. We all owe the Potters a debt of gratitude. That is why I fight for their son.”

“Lord Malfoy, weren’t you a Death Eater?”

Lucius’ face filled with true sorrow, “Yes, but like I told the Ministry I did not join of my own free will. When I was Marked by He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named I lost most of my powers. I was born Veela, a Magical Creature of great power and healing because we are creatures of Light. My Father promised me to He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named when I was born and he was furious when I came into my inheritance. He tried to separate me from my mate but as you can see I persevered. My Veela is still trapped because of the Dark Mark but hopefully some day I will be free.”

Severus reached for his hand, “I never agreed with the Dark Lord or his followers. I joined to protect the person I loved most. Amoung them he had no one he could trust, they needed a potions master and I offered myself. I served the Light in my own way, a way I believe that Lily would have understood. Even to the end we were still friends and she loved me like a brother. I will do anything to protect her son even from misguided fools who frame him for cheating to make him forced to participate in a Tournament that could possibly kill him.”

As they walked away Severus asked, “What did you tell them all that for?”

Lucius smirked, “Simple, sometimes truth is your greatest weapon. Let’s see what they make of it.”

XoooooX

They entered Courtroom ten and took their seats in the ‘defendants’ aisle.

Up on the dais were Madam Bones, Lady Augusta Longbottom, Cornelius Fudge, Lady Umbridge, Albus Dumbledore, Griselda Marchbanks, Tiberius Ogden, Elphias Doge, Kingsley Shacklebolt and Barty Crouch Sr.

Percy smirked briefly from his place as clerk.

Amelia rapped her gavel calling them to order at ten o’clock. “The meeting of the Council of Magical Law is now in session. The case is regarding Harry Potter? His voice is?”

Andromeda stepped up, “Myself. His guardian Remus Lupin asked me to be his voice and vote in the Wizengamot and the Board of Hogwarts Governors until he comes of age.”

“This is regarding Potter’s illegal entry and champion status?” Lady Umbridge asked.

Andromeda winced, “In a way yes. We hope to prove not only did Harry not enter the Tournament that he should in no way be bound by a Magical contract he cannot and never consented.”

Albus laughed and his eyes twinkled, “Oh come on Andromeda. No need for pretence. Of course Harry entered.”

“I beg your pardon Headmaster but he did not. My Bondmate is a Mind Healer as well as a highly skilled and regarded Legimens. He firmly believes that Harry did not enter the tournament. We would like to present our evidence.”

Albus Dumbledore was not amused as he agreed. “Proceed.”

“I would like to summon Harry Potter and Healer Ted Tonks. Would someone bring me a pensieve with a view screen?”

Shacklebolt nodded for a member of Magical Law Enforcement to obtain one.

“Ted? Please remove the memories regarding the tournament.”

Ted nodded, “Legimens.” Diving into Harry’s mind gently and opening the doors that was slightly cracked and bore signs that read Tournament somewhere on them. He emerged with the vial of collected memories. “My reputation has always been honourable and my services proved useful under both Madam Bones and Mr. Crouch. I have not altered these memories.”

The pensieve arrived as he spoke, “Here watch.”

The memory was grey and fuzzy as it played.

[We all know what happened when Harry’s name came out of the cup, I’m removing it because it’s too long and I’d rather have it all mine.]

Then the memory ended and the next began.

The memory shifted again to just before the Goblet choose it’s champions..

The majority of the Students entered the candlelit Great Hall around six, and it was almost full. The Goblet of Fire had been moved when they weren't paying attention; it was now standing in front of Hogwarts' Headmaster's empty chair at the teachers' table. Harry thought it was all over until, the flames were heard again. He felt icy dread flood his body.

Fleur Delacour of Beauxbatons Academy, Viktor Krum of Durmstrang Institute and Cedric Diggory of Hogwarts School became Triwizard Champions.

Then the Goblet crackled with flame and a fourth slip of singed paper came out of the Goblet of Fire.

Dumbledore snatched at it and then snapped, "Pot…Harry Potter!"

There was that awful tone, the one Uncle Vernon used before beating him. Harry looked up; all around him were looks of anger, betrayal and shock.

"Potter! Get up here!"

The Great Hall filled with hissing about cheating and how he was going to be punished.

This was no small thing, it wasn't like he could just scrub cauldrons or polish silver. He was going to be beaten; he just knew it.

Harry slowly wobbled to his feet, his face white with fear and his hands trembling. He hadn't done anything, why was his name in the cup? He didn't want to die; they were going to hurt him. He, Harry fainted, his magic did the strangest thing, it locked itself in side him and his Glamour the one he used so much magic to hide behind even betrayed him and crashed.

The memories ended.

Dumbledore looked aghast, “Healer Tonks are you sure that those are Harry’s only memories regarding the tournament?”

Ted glared, “Yes. Do you doubt me? After all the witnessing and service I’ve given to the Department of Magical Law Enforcement?”

“Come now Healer Tonks how much did Malfoy pay you to give this testimony?” Delores Jane Umbridge asked.

Ted snapped, “This I did for free. Remus Lupin hired me on another matter. One that will remain privileged until he deems it necessary to tell. I’ll make a wizard’s oath that the memories you watched me extract are genuine.”

Elphias Doge spoke up, “If Harry Potter didn’t put his name in, who did?”

“How did his name come out of the Goblet then?” Griselda Marchbanks asked.

Remus shrugged, “The only way a Fourth Champion’s name could emerge is if the Goblet was most likely convinced there was a Fourth School competing. That would have required a lot of power behind a Confundus charm. I am one of Harry’s former instructors and I know he doesn’t have that kind of power. He can cast a powerful Patronus but he hasn’t learned how to Confound Powerful Ancient Artefacts. Very few people could do that, not all of us have the magical fortitude that the Headmaster does.” It took all of Remus’ nerve to appear pleasant when Moony wanted to rip the old fool’s throat out for what he’d done to Severus.

Dumbledore scoffed, “Oh please Remus, it’s not that hard to confound a magical artefact.”

“Really?” Lucius interrupted, “We would be intrigued to be shown. I can’t do it but that’s probably because my powers are sealed. A real shame.”

Dumbledore ignored him and continued, “That is a terrible excuse for getting Harry out of this contract. I think he has you fooled.”

Draco scowled up at the headmaster, “So he starved himself too? And broke his own bones?”

Dumbledore nodded, “You see poor Harry suffers from a persecution complex and something that Muggles call Munchausen syndrome. He is convinced his Muggle guardians hate him. To make his story seem true he starves himself, and finds various ways to break his bones. If it weren’t for Petunia’s love for Lily and my insistence that he grow up under her roof he would have been placed in St. Mungos’ Janus Thickey ward with the Longbottoms. You see when I placed him in her care I didn’t know that the killing curse affected him in more ways then just his scar.”

“You’re saying that our Boy-Who-Lived is mad?” Cornelius looked faintly purple.

“I’m afraid so. I’m sorry Harry,” Dumbledore looked sad and mournful, “I’ve tried to protect you but you’ve forced my hand.”

Ted was furious, “He suffers from Munchausen? A Persecution complex? You’re a Transfiguration Master not a Mind Healer. I’ll thank you to stay out of fields you have no training in.”

“My dear man, no use in being angry at me. I’ve done nothing but speak the truth. Poor Harry is disturbed and needs treatment. It really is dreadful that he’s gotten you all involved with his fantasies.” Dumbledore said forlornly.

“He isn’t lying. If he was then I could smell it.” Remus protested hotly.

“To Harry, they aren’t lies. He honestly believes them. Remus, Remus, when have I lied to you?”

“Many times when you were convinced it was for your ‘Greater Good’.” Remus said his voice tight with anger. “I can tell the true between sincere truth and truth by belief.

“Your testimony ‘sir’ is out of order and is useless in this case. I don’t understand how dear Cornelius let himself be talked into letting a monster like you care for our Boy-Who-Lived.” Madam Umbridge said in a saccharine voice.

Remus produced copies of James, Lily and Sirius’ wills, “Copies of wills filed with Gringotts. Originals maybe viewed there if you don’t believe me. It was the wish of your ‘Great Heroes’ the Potters that I be guardian of their son and my friend who you decided without a trial to imprison for life also made me his guardian.”

“A friend that is still on the loose and may still desire the life of his purported best friend’s son? A son whose parents he betrayed?” Umbridge continued in the sickly sweet voice.

“Sirius is innocent. It’s that Pettigrew’ fault!” Harry snapped losing his temper, “It’s all that bloody rat’s fault!”

“Rat? But Pettigrew is dead because your godfather murdered him. Sirius Black blew up a street and killed sixteen Muggles. It’s a known fact.” Umbridge said sweetly.

“Peter blew the street up with a wand behind his back after yelling that Sirius betrayed James and Lily before Sirius could accuse him. I heard Peter admit it! You fools made my parents murderer a member of the Order of Merlin!” Harry glared at the woman shaking. He turned to Severus, “What is the incantation for copying and removing a memory?”

Severus told him.

Harry held out his hand, “I need a vial.”

Severus handed one to him.

Harry repeated the incantation, a silvery memory landing the vial and handed it to Ted. “Here make them watch that. It’s a long memory so sit down and keep quiet. You might learn something. Call me a liar will you? If I’m a liar then James Potter was a Death Eater and a traitor to the Light!”

The Council of Magical Law Enforcement stiffened and hissed at his words.

The memory was put into the pensive and the monitor played it.

Ron, Hermione and Harry had come to Hagrid’s hut under the invisibility cloak.

The Council and Harry’s supporters watched his memories of the night Sirius grabbed Ron and Harry discovered Sirius had been sent away for a crime he didn’t commit. [We all know what happened in Canon that night, absolutely no reason for me to repeat it all right?]

Harry spoke up, “Is there anyway to speed it up and skip a bit?”

“Something you don’t want us to see?” Umbridge asked sweetly.

Harry shook his head, “Just some of this is meaningless and I’m sure you’d rather not be bored by trivial things.”

Shacklebolt moved towards the pensieve, “I can speed it up, just let me know when to stop.”

Harry nodded as Shacklebolt whispered a spell.

Chapter Text

Chapter thirteen B

 

Harry waited until the him in his memory and Hermione used nox to extinguish the light from their wands. “That’s enough.

 

Shacklebolt nodded and the memory resumed playing at normal speed.

 

Only one door was open. As they crept toward it, they heard movement from behind it; a low moan, and then a deep, loud purring. They exchanged a last look, a last nod.

 

Everyone watched as the Harry in the memory, kicked the door wide open with his wand held tightly before him

They watched the vision silently.

"So that's why Snape doesn't like you," said Harry slowly, "because he thought you were in on the joke?"

 

"That's right," sneered a cold voice from the wall behind Remus. Severus Snape was pulling off the Invisibility Cloak, his wand pointing, directly at Remus.

 

Harry asked Shacklebolt to once again skip to avoid embarrassing anyone. He liked Severus and Remus, the next bit would be embarrassing to them both.

 

Shacklebolt agreed.

 

Harry made up his mind in a split second. Before Snape could take even one step toward him, he had raised his wand. "Expelliarmus!" he yelled

 

So did Ron and Hermione.

 

The combined disarming spell resulted in a blast that made the creaky door rattle on its hinges. Severus was lifted off his feet by the three-fold spell and slammed into the wall. Where he then slid down on to the floor, a trickle of blood oozing from under his hair.

 

Severus had been knocked out and probably had ended up with a concussion. For which Harry now felt extremely sorry.

 

Sirius told them off for what they had done, telling them they should have let him handle it.

 

Hermione whinged about them attacking a teacher, which was silly considering that she really didn’t like Snape all that much.

 

Sometimes her obsession with following the rules was as bad as Percy. What they had done wasn’t right but it seemed to be the correct thing to do. Severus had been blinded by jealousy and hurt when he’d followed them into the Shrieking Shack.

 

Remus was struggling against the painfully bonds Severus had cast using the Incarcerous spell.

 

Sirius bent down to untie his friend.

 

Remus sat up, rubbing where the far too tight ropes had cut into his arms. "Thank you, Harry," he said.  

 

"I'm still not saying I believe you," he told Remus.

 

Harry did now, seeing Pettigrew and hearing him confess to betraying his parents and letting Sirius get blamed.

 

Remus asked for Pettigrew after retrieving his wand and offer to give them their proof.

 

Ron was clutching Scabbers to his chest, weakly protesting about how unlikely it was that Scabbers was Peter Pettigrew who was believed to be dead, murdered along with sixteen Muggles. Even trying to get Hermione to agree with him about the improbability.

 

Remus admitted that it was a fair question before turning to Sirius and asking how his friend had found out where he was.

 

Sirius reached into his dirty ragged robes with his skeletal hands that were rather claw-like and took out a crumpled piece of paper.  Which they watched him smoothed flat on what was left of a damaged, dusty table and held out to show the others.

 

To everyone surprise it was the photograph of Ron and his family that had appeared in the Daily Prophet the previous summer after they won the Daily Prophet’s Galleon drawing. It was taken in Egypt where they had gone as a family to visit Bill and there, on Ron's shoulder, was Scabbers.

 

"How did you get this?" Remus asked his friend, thunderstruck.

 

Everyone present- except maybe Fudge knew that Azkaban prisoners were denied newspapers.

 

"Fudge." Sirius said. Telling them about how the Minister for Magic had give him the paper and how due to his witnessing Peter transforming numerous times he’d recognized his supposedly dead friend on the front page.

 

"My God," exclaimed Remus softly, his eyes clearly drifting from Scabbers to the picture in the paper and back to him in Ron’s hands. "His front paw..."

 

"What about it?" Ron asked defiantly.

 

"He's got a toe missing,"

 

"Of course, so simple... so brilliant... he cut it off himself?"

 

Sirius described what happened when he’d cornered Peter on that Muggle street after realizing that James and Lily were dead.

 

Remus and Ron proceeded to argue why and why not ‘Scabbers’ was Peter Pettigrew.

 

Ron protested that Scabbers was ill because of Crookshanks, that mad cat was trying kill him.

 

But that wasn't right, Harry remembered.  Scabbers had been looking ill before he met Crookshanks. They met Crookshanks when Ron decided to pick up rat tonic and Hermione was planning on getting an owl. In fact, Scabbers had been ill since Ron's return from Egypt, so somewhere around the time when Sirius had escaped..

 

Sirius told them that Crookshanks wasn’t mad, nor was he trying to kill Scabbers. Crookshanks had been helping him after deciding that Scabbers rather them Sirius was up to no good.

 

"What do you mean?" breathed Hermione.

 

Sirius told them how Crookshanks tried and failed to bring Scabbers to him. Finally the cat stole a list of passwords from a boy’s bedside hoping that he would have better luck being a wizard rather them a part Kneazel.

 

Harry's brain seemed to be sagging under the weight of what he was hearing. It was absurd... and yet...

 

Sirius told them how Peter had discovered what Crookshanks was up to and tried to frame the Kneazel for his death. Having already succeeded in similar actions it must have been easy. Since there was blood on the sheets Peter probably bit himself.

 

These words jolted the Harry in the pensieve to his senses. He started yelling about why Sirius would try get to a hold of Scabbers and that it was to kill him like Sirius had killed his parents.

 

Harry winced, that tone of voice made him quake. He knew now that Sirius was innocent but to see and hear his own rage reflected was nauseating.

 

"No, Harry-" Remus tried to calm him down.

 

"And now you've come to finish him off!" Harry yelled.

 

"Yes, I have," said Sirius, with an evil look at Scabbers.

 

"Then I should've let Snape take you!" Harry shouted.

 

"Harry," said Remus hurriedly, "don't you see? All this time we've thought Sirius betrayed your parents, and Peter tracked him down -- but it was the other way around, don't you see? Peter betrayed your mother and father -- Sirius tracked Peter down --"

 

"THAT'S NOT TRUE!" Harry yelled. Stubbornly insisting that Sirius was their Secret Keeper and that he had betrayed them.

 

He was pointing at Sirius, who shook his head slowly; the sunken eyes were suddenly over bright.

 

Sirius protested weakly, accepting that he was to blame for Lily and James’ murders because Peter becoming Secret Keeper was his idea. That he had been responsible for Peter’s safety, yet Peter escaped. Sirius had discovered James and Lily dead, so he’d set out to track Peter. Because he realized that his pressuring James and Lily to switch to Peter had been responsible for their being betrayed.

 

"Enough of this," said Remus.

 

The tone of his voice was sharp like steel as he ordered Ron to give him the rat.

 

"What are you going to do with him if I give him to you?" Ron asked Remus tensely.

 

"Force him to show himself," said Remus. "If he really is a rat, it won't hurt him."

 

At first Ron hesitated and then handed Scabbers to Remus.

 

"Ready, Sirius?" Remus asked.

 

Sirius took Severus’ wand, croaking, “Together?

 

"I think so. On the count of three. One -- two -- THREE!” said Remus, holding Scabbers tightly in one hand and his wand in the other.

 

A flash of blue-white light erupted from both wands; for a moment, Scabbers was frozen in midair, his small gray form twisting madly.

 

Ron yelled.

 

The rat fell and hit the floor. There was another blinding flash of light and then --

 

There were gasps from the Tonks, the Malfoys and the Council of Magical Law.

 

As the spell cast from Remus and Sirius hit the rat.

 

The rat shimmered and grew like watching a tree growing in fast forward. Soon there wasn’t a rat but a chubby man with a bald spot and watery eyes who was wringing his hands.

 

"Well, hello, Peter. Long time, no see. " Remus said agreeably.

 

Almost as though rats often were found to be old friends.

 

"S -- Sirius... R – Remus… My friends... my old friends..."

Pettigrew's voice was squeaky and his eyes frequently darted toward the direction of the door in a manner that was decidedly shifty.

 

Sirius's wand arm rose in a threatening manner.

 

Then Remus grabbed his wrist tightly and give him a warning look, before he turned n to Pettigrew, his voice was pleasant. "We've been having a little chat, Peter, about what happened the night Lily and James died. You might have missed the finer points while you were squeaking around down there on the bed --"

 

Pettigrew squeaked about Remus believing Sirius after the later had tried to kill him.

 

Remus coldly acknowledged that Sirius might have tried to kill him however he wanted to clear up some things regarding the night James and Lily died.

 

"He's come to try and kill me again!" Pettigrew squeaked suddenly, pointing at Sirius, and Harry saw that he used his middle finger, because his index was missing. "He killed Lily and James and now he's going to kill me too.... You've got to help me, Remus...."

 

If looks could kill or at least cause serious pain Pettigrew would probably be thrashing about like he was under the Cruciatus curse. Remus winced at the expression on Sirius’ face, to cast an unforgivable you have mean it. If Sirius had cast it at that moment he would have definitely meant it and it would have done considerable damage. In his study of the Dark Arts and fighting them revealed that Dark Arts were fueled by the darker emotions. One had to hate the person they cast a Dark Arts spell on to cause pain and suffering.

 

"No one's going to try and kill you until we've sorted a few things out," Remus snapped.

 

Pettigrew protested the need to sort things out when clearly Sirius wanted him dead. Claiming that he’d been waiting for Sirius to come after him

Remus, his brow furrowed in surprise at Peter’s state about expecting Sirius to escape Azkaban. "When nobody has ever done it before?"

 

Pettigrew accused Sirius of having Dark Magic that no one knew about, that Voldemort taught him things.

 

Sirius started to laugh, a horrible, mirthless laugh that seemed filled the whole room. "Voldemort, teach me tricks?"

 

Pettigrew flinched.

As did anyone watching minus of course Dumbledore who always used it when referring to the current Dark Lord.

 

"What, scared to hear your old master's name?" Sirius sneered, “ I don't blame you, Peter. His lot aren't very happy with you, are they?"

 

Pettigrew mumbled under his breath about not knowing what Sirius was talking about when his whole face was shining with sweat.

 

Sirius turned the tables, accusing Pettigrew of hiding from Death Eaters rather then himself and how rumours had even reached Azkaban about how they were gunning for whoever was responsible for their Lord’s disappearance.

 

Shrilly Pettigrew continued denying the accusations though he tried to wipe the sweat from his face with a dingy sleeve. While asking Remus if he believe what Sirius was saying.

 

Remus calmly admitted difficult in believing an ‘innocent’ man would spend twelve years as a rat.

 

Pettigrew insisted in a squeal that he was ‘Innocent, but scared! Claiming that if Voldemort's supporters were after him it was because he put the spy, Sirius Black in Azkaban.

 

Sirius growled, sounding like a bear-sized dog, about being a spy for Voldemort. That he, Sirius had never snuck around people who were stronger and more powerful than himself? His annoyance was clear because that he hadn’t understood that Pettigrew was the spy from the start. Telling them that Pettigrew had always liked big friends who'd look after him. That it used to be himself, Remus and James...only to have clearly been traded in for Voldemort.

 

Pettigrew had wiped his face again and was almost panting as he denied still having been a spy. Claiming that Sirius must be out of his mind and seemed to be grasping at straws.

 

Sirius hissed, so venomously that Pettigrew took a step backward. Telling Pettigrew that changing to him as Secret Keeper at the last minute had been his idea because he’d been sure that it was flawless. That it would have been thought that Sirius himself was the Secret Keeper so he would have been a clear target. After all who would suspect they would have chosen a weak, talentless thing like you. Sneering that Pettigrew’s finest moment in his miserable life, when he told Voldemort that he could hand him the Potters.

 

Pettigrew was muttering as if he were clearly distracted.

 

Those viewing Harry’s memories in the pensieve could hear words like ‘far-fetched’ and ‘lunacy,’ but one couldn't help noticing the ashen color of Pettigrew's face and the way his eyes continued to dart toward the windows and door as if looking for an escape route.

 

Hermione timidly asked if she could ask a question.

 

To which Remus politely agreed.

 

Hermione made the point that ‘Scabbers’ or Pettigrew had stayed for three years in a dormitory and hadn’t harmed him. That if Pettigrew had done what they said wouldn’t he have?

 

Pettigrew shrilly, pointing at Ron with his maimed hand, agreed with her that he had never harmed Harry. Latching onto the statement as if it would prove his innocence.

 

Sirius told them that that Pettigrew never did anything unless it benefited him. That Voldemort had been in hiding for years and that he was said to be half dead. Pettigrew wouldn’t commit murder right under Albus Dumbledore's nose, for a wreck of a wizard who'd lost all of his power. Voldemort had to be  the biggest bully in the playground before Pettigrew would rejoin him. He sneered that the reason he, Pettigrew found a wizard family to take you in was keep an ear out for news. In case his old protector regained strength, and it was safe to rejoin him.

Pettigrew opened his mouth and closed it several times. He seemed to have lost the ability to talk.

 

Hermione then addressed Sirius.

 

Sirius jumped at being addressed in this manner and looked at her like she was an enigma.

 

Hermione then proceeded to ask him how he escaped Azkaban if he didn’t use Dark Magic.

 

Pettigrew gasped, nodding frantically at her. Saying that he wanted to know as well.

 

Remus glared at him and Pettigrew went silent.

 

Sirius was frowning slightly at Hermione, as he pondered his answer. Then he proceeded to tell them how his knowing he was innocent helped him keep his mind. It wasn’t a happy thought so the Dementors couldn’t steal it. When it got to be too much he transformed. Since Dementors were blind they didn’t know he transformed, his less than human thoughts were proof he was ‘going insane’.

 

Pettigrew shook his head, his mouth silently forming words he didn’t speak and yet didn’t seem to be able to tear his eyes away from his ‘old friend’. It was as if Sirius Black had him hypnotized.

 

Sirius continued that due Pettigrew’s decision to hide as a pet rat in a Wizarding family had Pettigrew perfectly situated. Pettigrew was in a position to deliver Harry over to Voldemort the moment he was sure of Allies.  If he, Pettigrew delivered Harry to them, who'd dare say he'd betrayed Lord Voldemort? He'd be welcomed back with honors.  In light of that Sirius had to escape to protect Harry, especially since he was the only one who knew Peter was alive.

 

Severus wondered if Sirius’ oath from Harry’s Wiccaning had helped push him into it. The oath was binding and hard to fight, after seeing Draco untransfigured from a ferret had him torn between avenging his godson and making sure he was treated.

 

Harry remembered what he overheard Mr. Weasley telling Mrs. Weasley. "The guards say he's been talking in his sleep... always the same words... 'He's at Hogwarts.'"

 

Sirius told them that it became an obsession, which was something the Dementors couldn’t take either.  That gave Sirius or so he claimed strength and helped clear his mind. When the Dementors came one day to bring food Sirius in his animagus form had slipped past them when they came to feed him. As a dog claimed he’d been thin enough to slip through the bars. Then swam as a dog back to the mainland where he then journeyed north and slipped into the Hogwarts grounds as a dog. Where he had been living in the forest ever since, except when he’d came to watch Harry play Quidditch with Gryffindor. Then he told Harry that he flew as well as James before telling his godson that he would have died sooner then betray Harry’s parents.

 

 Harry’s eyes didn’t look away.

 

And at long last, Harry believed him. Throat too tight to speak, he nodded.

 

"No!"

the viewers watched as Pettigrew fell to his knees as though Harry's nod had been his own death sentence.

 

Pettigrew was on his knees, groveling, his hands clasped in front of him as though begging.

 

"Sirius -- it's me... it's Peter... your friend... you wouldn't --"

 

Sirius kicked at him.

 

Pettigrew recoiled.

 

Sirius snarled. "There's enough filth on my robes without you touching them,"

 

Pettigrew implored Remus, begging him. Asking if it was ever probable that James and Lily had changed at the last minute and not told them.

 

Pettigrew proceeded to beg them each in turn, Remus, Ron, Hermione and finally Harry.

 

Remus was disgusted, Ron looked at him with distaste and Hermione turned her back on Pettigrew.

 

Sirius blew up at the rat; incensed that Pettigrew had the audacity to speak of James to Harry. Shouting that he should have stood up to Voldemort, should have died rather then to betray his friends: simply because that was what they would have done for him.

Harry finally stepped in when it was obvious that Sirius and Remus wanted to kill the rat, actually stepping between their wands and Pettigrew. Protesting that his father wouldn’t have wanted his friends to become killers even to avenge him.

 

Sirius reminded Harry that the crying balding rat of a man was responsible for his not having parents.

 

Harry then insisted that they turn Pettigrew in and let him be sent to Azkaban for what he did. Then Sirius could be found innocent and declared free.

 

Pettigrew then was practically kissing his feet, thanking him for his kindness.

 

Harry shook him off, or more accurately shoved him, and spat at him to get off. That it was for his father’s sake and not Pettigrew’s that he was doing this.

 

No one moved or made a sound except Pettigrew, whose breath was coming in wheezes as he clutched his chest.

 

Sirius and Remus were looking at each other. Then together, they lowered their wands.

 

Sirius told Harry he was the only who deserved to make the choice but to consider what he, Pettigrew had done.

 

Harry repeated that Pettigrew could go to Azkaban, that if anyone deserved that place, he did.

 

Lucius promised himself that if Pettigrew was caught that he would follow Harry’s wishes.

 

Pettigrew was still behind Harry and making wheezing noises.

 

Remus reluctantly seemed to give in and asked Harry to stand aside.

 

Harry hesitated.

 

Remus then swore he was only going to restrain the traitor.

 

So Harry stepped out of the way.

 

A silent Incarcerous and within a heartbeat, Pettigrew was wriggling on the floor, bound and gagged.

 

Sirius growled that if Pettigrew transformed they would kill him and asked Harry for an agreement.

 

Severus was more then a little annoyed at Sirius’ heavy-handed behavior. Seriously? Asking a thirteen year old boy for the right to kill someone?

 

Harry nodded when he was directly in Pettigrew’s line of sight.

 

Some of the members of the Council of Magical Law gasped.

 

Remus had turned to his students, telling Ron that he couldn’t mend bones like Pomfrey but he could make it easier for him.

 

Bandages spun up Ron's leg, strapping it tightly to a splint.

 

Remus then helped him to his feet.

 

Ron clearly put weight on his leg and for once didn’t wince.

 

Hermione was looking at Severus’ unconscious form and asked what they were going to do about him.

 

Remus winced at the memory, glancing nervously at Lucius and Severus. He’d been a coward that day not standing up to Severus or against Padfoot.

 

Remus checked his pulse and declared that there wasn’t anything really wrong with him. Telling the teens they were just overly enthusiastic. Deciding it would be best to have him remain unconscious. Using Mobilicorpus to guide his fellow professor to his feet and using flicks of his wand to direct him.

 

Remus sighed, he’d wanted Severus to be revived by Pomfrey because he hadn’t much skill at healing medicine. Also he didn’t want to be forced to deal with their bickering at the time. Neither could be in a room without wanting to kill one another.

 

Sirius insisted that two of them be chained to Pettigrew to make sure he didn’t try to escape.

 

Ron and Remus volunteered.

 

Sirius then conjured heavy manacles from thin air; chaining an upright Pettigrew’s left arm chained to Remus' right and Pettigrew’s right arm to Ron's left.

 

Ron's face was set hard like marble, his glances at Pettigrew were revealing extreme disgust. As if Ron viewed Scabbers's true identity as a personal insult.

 

Crookshanks was jaunty and buoyant as if he’d been vindicated.

 

Harry’s memory ended there, he hadn’t copied past that point.

 

He glared, “See? I told you Pettigrew was alive and no one believed me but the Headmaster. He shut us in the Infirmary after kicking everyone else out. Calmly mentioning to Hermione about three turns, knowing full well it was too dangerous for us to be outside the castle but if I hadn’t both Sirius and I would have been Kissed.”

 

Remus winced knowing too dangerous meant himself as a werewolf running loose in the Forbidden Forest.

 

“Three turns?” Fudge asked raising an eyebrow.

 

“Some brilliant person agreed with McGonagall and let Hermione take twelve classes. That required the use and special dispensation to use a Time-Turner. Clearly she violated the carefully prescribed uses.” Harry shrugged.

 

“We have in a pensieve memory the confession of one Peter Pettigrew admitting to his joining the ranks of He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named and betraying the Potters.” Madam Bones was very disturbed. “I can’t understand how the Wizengamot allowed such a travesty of justice.” Glaring at Crouch who was practically vacant.

 

“We should, um, copy this memory and add it to the file of the investigation I secretly ordered regarding the Black case.” Fudge muttered.

 

Shacklebolt nodded, clearly planning to watch the entire memory from start to finish to see if there was anything of import that Harry had hidden for him.

 

“It seems despite my esteemed colleague’s opinion that his memories are honest. I vote that he be released from the supposed contract and be free to return to school without consequences.” Madam Bones said, despite having attacked a teacher who considering said teacher’s support of Harry had no reason to press charges under either the authority of the school or Wizengamot.

 

Doge, Dumbledore, Crouch and surprisingly Umbridge disagreed.

 

Fudge, Kingsley, Lady Longbottom, Marchbanks and Ogden sided with Madam Bones.

 

With a vote of six to four the Council of Magical Law’s ruling was that Harry be released from the Magical Contract binding him to participate in the Triwizard Tournament.

 

Crouch was practically catatonic.

 

Dumbledore looked apoplectic.

 

Harry crumbled to his feet in shock.

 

Draco scooped him up, “You’re free.”

 

Harry silently sobbed into his new friend’s robes.

 

Lucius and Remus hugged Severus jointly.

 

Dumbledore’s face was white with anger.

 

Sirius could see beneath that hastily erected Glamour that Dumbledore was seething; if looks could kill Severus would be dead. He looked at Dumbledore, his voice purring, “Headmaster, do you know who I am?”

 

Dumbledore was shocked silent.

 

Sirius’ voice boomed in the courtroom, “My name is Sirius Black, the first to hold that name, not to be confused with my wayward great something nephew. I came to my attention that one of my descendants was in danger. My friend the Veela queen was only too delighted to invite me to court. You see Headmaster, Harry Potter is under my protection. I am the King of the Chuvash.”

 

He roared and the courtroom shook.

 

Kingsley Shacklebolt, Amelia Bones, Lady Longbottom and Cornelius Fudge quaked and bowed.

 

Lucius was surprised; he thought Sirius was merely a leader of the Chuvash not their king. This man was equal to his queen and he fell to his knees.

 

His companions following suit.

 

Umbridge’s pudgy face was twisted with hatred.

 

“You can’t claim him!” Dumbledore hissed.

 

“Tell me Headmaster why he speaks in Parseltongue? It is a trait shared only by those of Chuvash blood.”

 

“Because, because…because of Voldemort! The killing curse!” Dumbledore stammered and then snarled.

 

“You are a fool, wise but a great fool nonetheless. He is mine, touch him again and as the King of the Chuvash no matter what I do to you old man even your precious Ministry can’t touch me.” Sirius gestured for the Malfoys, Tonks and Remus to rise, “We shall be taking our leave.” He glanced at Lady Longbottom, “Be gentle with your grandson my dear. He is at a very delicate stage of his maturity. He will need your guidance; it wouldn’t do well to make him fear you. Oh, do him a favour. Buy him a wand.”

 

Lady Longbottom stared at him as they departed.

 

Percy signed his minutes of the case, handed them off to Shacklebolt and disappeared.

 

 

 

Chapter Text

Title: Unlikely Heroes

Chapter 14

 

Reluctantly, Harry agreed to a session with Mind Healer Tonks the day after they argued their case to have him excused from the Tournament.

They were in the Drawing room of Lucius' townhouse.

By they Harry meant: Lucius, Remus, Severus, Andromeda, her daughter Nymphadora-who insisted she be called Tonks but her father overrode her and said they could call her Dora, Draco and his ancestor Sirius I.

Harry gulped, "Why is there a pensieve?"

Ted smiled gently at him, "Because you don't like talking. I thought perhaps since you know the spell to copy and remove a memory we could deal with specific memories one by one."

Harry sighed and nodded, "Fine."

Severus pitied him and made a suggestion, "For every painful memory you show I'll show one of equal or near equal pain."

Lucius glanced at his mate; he knew how much Severus suffered both at home and at the hands of the 'Marauders'. He wasn't sure Severus should show his memories…

Harry chewed on his lip, "Agreed."

"Pick a memory Harry." Ted instructed gently.

Harry swallowed and chose his memory. He carefully copied it and saved it to a vial that miraculously seemed to find itself beside him.

The memory was poured into the pensieve and a screen attached so the others could watch it.

The memory began.

Harry stood in the kitchen, clutching the mop for support, as Uncle Vernon advanced on him, a demonic glint in his tiny eyes.

"Read it!" he hissed evilly, brandishing the letter the owl had delivered. "Go on - read it!"

Harry took it. It did not contain birthday greetings.

Dear Mr. Potter,

We have received intelligence that a Hover Charm was used at your place of residence this evening at twelve minutes past nine. As you know, underage wizards are not permitted to perform spells outside school, and further spellwork on your part may lead to expulsion from said school (Decree for the Reasonable Restriction of Underage Sorcery, 1875, Paragraph C). We would also ask you to remember that any magical activity that risks notice by members of the non-magical community (Muggles) is a serious offense under section 13 of the International Confederation of Warlocks' Statute of Secrecy.

Enjoy your holidays! Yours sincerely,

Mafalda Hopkirk

IMPROPER USE OF MAGIC OFFICE

Ministry of Magic

Harry looked up from the letter and gulped.

"You didn't tell us you weren't allowed to use magic outside school," said Uncle Vernon, a mad gleam dancing in his eyes. "Forgot to mention it. Slipped your mind, I daresay." He was bearing down on Harry like a great bulldog, all his teeth bared. "Well, I've got news for you, boy. I'm locking you up. You're never going back to that school ... never ... and if you try and magic yourself out - they'll expel you!"

And laughing like a maniac, he dragged Harry back upstairs.

Uncle Vernon was as bad as his word.

The memory skipped of it's own accord to the following morning.

Vernon Dursley paid a man to fit bars on Harry's window. He himself fitted a cat-flap in the bedroom door, so that small amounts of food could be pushed inside three times a day. They let Harry out to use the bathroom morning and evening. Otherwise, he was locked in his room around the clock.

Three days later, the Dursleys were showing no sign of relenting, and Harry couldn't see any way out of his situation. He lay on his bed watching the sun sinking behind the bars on the window and wondered miserably what was going to happen to him.

What was the good of magicking himself out of his room if Hogwarts would expel him for doing it? Yet life at Privet Drive had reached an all-time low. Now that the Dursleys knew they weren't going to wake up as fruit bats, he had lost his only weapon. Dobby might have saved Harry from horrible happenings at Hogwarts, but the way things were going, he'd probably starve to death anyway.

The cat-flap rattled and Aunt Petunia's hand appeared, pushing a bowl of canned soup into the room. Harry, whose insides were aching with hunger, jumped off his bed and seized it. The soup was stone cold, but he drank half of it in one gulp. Then he crossed the room to Hedwig's cage and tipped the soggy vegetables at the bottom of the bowl into her empty food tray. She ruffled her feathers and gave him a look of deep disgust.

"It's no good turning your beak up at it - that's all we've got," said Harry grimly. He put the empty bowl back on the floor next to the cat-flap and lay back down on the bed, somehow even hungrier than he had been before the soup.

Supposing he was still alive in another four weeks, what would happen if he didn't turn up at Hogwarts? Would someone be sent to see why he hadn't come back? Would they be able to make the Dursleys let him go?

The room was growing dark. Exhausted, stomach rumbling, mind spinning over the same unanswerable questions, Harry fell into an uneasy sleep.

He dreamed that he was on show in a zoo, with a card reading UNDERAGE WIZARD attached to his cage. People goggled through the bars at him as he lay, starving and weak, on a bed of straw. He saw Dobby's face in the crowd and shouted out, asking for help, but Dobby called, "Harry Potter is safe there, sir!" and vanished. Then the Dursleys appeared and Dudley rattled the bars of the cage, laughing at him.

"Stop it," Harry muttered as the rattling pounded in his sore head. "Leave me alone ... cut it out... I'm trying to sleep."

He opened his eyes. Moonlight was shining through the bars on the window. And someone was goggling through the bars at him: a freckle- faced, red-haired, long-nosed someone.

Ron Weasley was outside Harry's window.

The memory finally ended.

Everyone but Severus was absolutely furious. Dora wanted to arrest the Muggles and have them tried before the Council of Magical Law.

Severus closed his eyes, withdrawing a very painful and highly embarrassing memory. He placed the silvery memory in an empty potions vial and held it out to Harry, "As promised. I would prefer you viewed it privately but in all fairness you had to suffer letting us all see that. Therefore against my wishes for privacy I will allow all of them to view it. Only Lucius knows something of it and I have kept the complete shameful truth from everyone but your mother."

Harry blinked at the mention of his mother.

Severus glanced at Remus, "You believe I'm sure that my worst memory would be of the day I called Lily a Mudblood?"

Remus nodded.

Severus shook his head, "That would be third. First would be when Dumbledore ripped away my child, second would be this memory…"

Harry replaced his own memory in it's vial, not noticing Tonks had labeled it and put it inside her robe.

Severus glanced at Lucius and Remus, muttering, "What you see don't think too badly of me."

Harry poured the memory into the pensieve.

Severus was scrawny for his age like Harry, he slept in a small room a little bigger then a closet but less then a true room. It was as if a Muggle-sized loo had all its contents banished. This was the bedroom belonging to a young Severus Snape.

He could hear his mother's soft cries of pain as her Muggle husband beat her. How the mighty had fallen, Eileen Prince had once had fine marks and was expected to reach great heights.

Her bedroom door slammed.

His room was opened, in the door stood the man who'd sired him. "Well if it isn't the little wizard. You sleep well on that moth-eaten mattress? I'll break you like I broke her."

Severus was grabbed by his hair and dragged down the hall but he stayed silent, refusing to let tears even fill his eyes.

He was dragged to the tiniest closet in their tumbled down near ruin of a house, Spinner's End. It was an old broom closet and there wasn't room to even turn around.

Severus was thrown in.

Tobias kicked him and stomped on him; leaving him silent, defiant but bloody when he finally slammed and locked the door taunting him, "Let yourself out if you dare. Using magic will get you thrown out of yours and your bitch mother's precious school. I'll let you out when I return." There was a truly malicious glee in those eyes.

Severus lay cramped; sleeping fitfully it was hard to judge the passage of time in the darkness of the closet. But to his horror and shame both his bladder and bowels betrayed him more hen once. He hadn't eaten for two days before he'd been tossed in here, Tobias had locked him up and his window was nailed shut so he couldn't sneak over to the Evans' house. Lily or her mother would feed him if he was there…

To his embarrassment, he could hear Lily. He tried and failed to convince himself that it was the product of a delusional mind, brought on from lack of food and water as well as sitting in a mix of his own bodily fluids.

"What is that smell? It smells like something died."

His bedroom door sounded like it'd been opened. "Severus where are you? I know something's happened. I haven't seen you in a week. The neighbors said Mr. Snape's been gone for four days. Please don't be dead."

It was pride that kept him from making any noise.

To his terror, the door to his closet was opened.

"Alohomora. Oh my god! Severus!" Lily's eyes filled with tears, "Please don't be dead. I don't know what I would do if you were. Who would make fun of that toerag with me? Severus?"

Reflected in her eyes was the beaten filthy thirteen-year-old boy, if Tobias saw him now he would have won.

Lily whispered an ancient spell that hid all magic; calling on her magic she lifted her friend. "I'll never tell a soul."

Severus lay half-dead with hunger and barely breathing as she levitated him onto a conjured stretcher.

Lily used her magic to push the stretcher into the bathroom; she turned on the water and made it nearly hot. Stripping down to her underwear she undressed her friend, there was such tenderness in her care of him. It was as if she was his mother or at least a nurse. She lifted him into the tub after conjuring a hair tie to hold her auburn hair back; with gentleness she bathed his body, washing everything away.

Severus was almost in tears; no one he'd ever known would do this for him. He was too weak to clean himself.

Three times she had to banish the water and refill the tub but not once did she say anything cruel or condescending. All that mattered was her friend…

When he was clean she used a spell to dry him off and then summoned clothes. Dressing her best friend and shoving clothes in his school bag, she had to use a featherweight charm to carry him. Lily called her dad and said that his parents were away and asked if he could spend a few days with them. After gaining their consent she hugged him. "I won't tell a soul. I'll take today's memory to my grave."

The memory ended.

Harry was in tears; his mother was kind and good. How could she have married someone like James Potter? Ron wouldn't have done that for him; neither would Hermione though she was often compared to his mother. He looked up at Draco and knew in his heart that Draco would have done the same to him as Lily had done for Severus. The difference was that his mother had clearly loved Severus as a brother and being his destined mate, Draco cared for him in a different way.

Lucius understood why Severus was so loyal to Lily; she was the only light in his life away from Hogwarts. The gentle care she gave to Severus that day and the solemn promise to never speak of it made him understand why his mate was so upset with himself for how he treated Lily's son. He remembered how Lily would defend Severus and understood for the first time; Harry's defense for unjustly maligned persons was his mother shining through.

Remus was sickened that Severus' sire had done something so cruel as to lock his son in a tiny closet for something like three days. He thanked the fates that his mate had had someone like Lily and wished that Harry had been so lucky.

Draco was glad his papa's father was dead, the man was beyond cruel and it hurt to see Severus like that, so broken and ashamed. As if any of that was his fault! Lily Evans was a wonderful person and he wished Harry had known her…

Andromeda had never liked Severus, she hadn't gone out of her way to make the Halfblood’s life hell like Narcissa, Bellatrix, Sirius or James had but she hadn't stopped it either.

Ted hadn't realized such a traumatizing memory existed in the man he had once attended school with albeit in different years and houses. No wonder he was so cold and withdrawn until Lucius finally was able to be Bonded to him. Severus truly did need his services despite his reluctance.

Dora shook, a Muggle did that? She'd never see a soul so broken even someone tortured by the Cruciatus and the Imperious had never looked that close to wishing for death. She thanked Hufflepuff that she'd had her parents to love her and show her how to be a good person. It could have been worse much worse.

 

 

Chapter Text

Chapter 15

Lucius owned an apartment building and for Percy’s protection, he offered him a place there and the young man graciously accepted.

He was a staunch Appleby Arrows fan but for Percy’s sake he would do this. He made an appointment to meet with the owner of the Puddlemere United team asking if he would bring his newly signed Keeper to Lunch at Antonio’s.

It was ten to noon when Brandon Puleston and Oliver Wood arrived.

Lucius nodded, “Kind of you to agree to join me.”

Oliver looked uncomfortable.

“My son told me that you were the best Keeper at Hogwarts. He was actually quite pleased when you were signed. Said it would be a real shame.”

Oliver paled, “Malfoy? He said that about me? I thought he hated Gryffindor. He was always picking fights with Harry. Harry was the one person he never won against.”

“With the way Wood’s been bragging about this Potter I wish the Hogwarts’ season hadn’t be cancelled. I would have liked to see him play.” Puleston admitted.

“I had the opportunity to watch him once; he’s the best I’ve ever seen. Put Regulus Black to shame and when I was at Hogwarts he was the best.” Lucius said.

“The professors said Charlie was better then Regulus and he was invited to play for three teams. Harry was better then Charlie his first year. It was an honour to teach him how to play and watch him grow.” Oliver said nervously.

Lucius gestured at their menus, “Order whatever you like before we get down to business.”

Oliver nervously ordered, a salad.

Lucius snorted, “Bring him Spaghetti al carbon. I’ll have steak Fettuccini.”

Puleston had something not that Lucius gave a damn. This ‘interview’ was all about Oliver.

“Tell me about Hogwarts. Did you have any favourite subjects? Friends?” Lucius wanted to see what Dumbledore had done to this boy.

“I had a friend once, I thought we couldn’t be closer. He helped me study and read through my essays offering corrections. Then the Chamber of Secrets was open and we became closer. Or at least I thought we did. Until a professor took me aside and said that they felt trapped and didn’t want to see me anymore. I was under strict orders to stay away. I was confused because we’d planned to move in together and we were planning a life together. I had every intention of asking them to Bond with me and supporting their political aspirations.” Oliver looked so lost, as if his heart had been broken.

Lucius was surprised that Dumbledore hadn’t wiped his memory, and then he realized that the boy had held something back.

Puleston stepped out to use the loo.

Lucius cast a ward and a privacy charm, “That’s not all the Headmaster said was it?”

Oliver looked faint, “How did you know?”

“Because he tried to destroy my boyfriend too.”

“I heard you recently were Bonded to Professor Snape.” Oliver stammered.

“Yes. So tell me please, what else did Dumbledore say?”

Oliver’s hands twisted into fists, “He implied I forced him and that Percy came to him in tears. He’d comforted Percy and made him forget. He told me if I so much as talked to Percy he’d turn me over to the Aurors. I would never hurt Percy!”

Nodding, Lucius handed him a scrap of parchment. “That is Percy’s new address. He wants to see you. He never told Dumbledore that you raped him. He told him under Veritaserum that you were going to move into together and that he loved you. The Headmaster was furious and forced Percy to not only forget your relationship but convinced him he hated you and Quidditch. He should be at this address by six-thirty.”

Oliver took the scrap of parchment and held onto it like a lifeline, “Thank you sir. You don’t know what this means to me.”

Lucius smirked, “Oh I can guess.” His countenance took on a sombre expression; “He needs you now more then ever. Listen to him but whatever you do don’t be angry with him.”

Oliver’s brow creased with worry. “Is he alright?”

Lucius said quickly, “I hope he will be.”

The Puddlemere owner returned.

Oliver slipped the parchment scrap into his jeans, and sipped his wine. He had a little more colour in his face.

Meeting ended with Lucius signing a check for the team with the understanding that Keeper Wood would be starting for the rest of the season.

Oliver was excited but more keen on finally seeing his beloved Percy.

XoooooX

Percy met with Penelope and withdrew his courting rights. He said that he’d decided they were fundamentally unsuited and that she would be better off with someone who appreciated her properly.

Crouch had disappeared and hadn’t been to work since the Council of Magical Law verdict came down.

Percy had been working like a dog trying to keep the Department of International Relations running as smoothly as he could. He was half-dead when he arrived at his new apartment.

Sitting cross-legged beside his apartment’s front door was a familiar person. A name fell from his lips, “Ollie…”

The figure sprang up, hurried towards him and pulled him close, “I’ve missed you so much. I’m sorry. I thought you hated me. I was told to stay away from you.”

Percy felt at home, in those familiar arms he was safe. He took Oliver’s hand and squeezed it, “Come inside. We have to talk.” He felt cold, so cold. He just hoped after he told Oliver his side of the story, his former lover wouldn’t hate him.

Once they were inside Percy gestured for Oliver to sit on the dreary settee he’d been given by Aunt Muriel. Choosing a worn armchair from Grandfather for himself.

Oliver was upset, “Percy why are you over there? Please come sit with me.”

Percy shook his head, pulling his knees to his chest and wrapping his arms around them. “I can’t. We have things we must speak about first. If I let us pick up right where I know we left off before Dumbledore discovered our relationship it would be unfair.”

Oliver decided not to push, “What do we need to speak about?” he vaguely remembered Lucius Malfoy’s words of caution over lunch.

Percy couldn’t look at the man the boy he’d loved had become. “You remember when Ginny was rescued from the Chamber of Secrets by Ron and Harry?”

Oliver nodded, “Yes.”

Percy bit his lip, “The Headmaster asked to see me to ask how Ginny was and to apologize for having to punish her for her part in Opening the Chamber and attacking her fellow students. He offered me tea, but Ollie he had Veritaserum in it. I didn’t know, I thought him trustworthy. Mum always said how devoted he was to the cause of the Light, so I trusted him. For that I paid a terrible price, the worst price I could have imagined. He asked me about my future plans so I mentioned us, how we were going to move in together and start a life. He…he said this won’t do…this wouldn’t do at all.” He felt trapped in the memory but he had to get through it. “He put me under the Imperious and,” his voice broke.

Oliver made a move towards him.

Percy put up his hand, “Don’t.” he swallowed and continued, “he said, ‘Now listen you little ingrate. You're a Weasley, you're going into the Ministry and that Quidditch-obsessed idiot is just going to hold you back. You will forget about him and have nothing more to do with him. Now when you receive your badge as Head Boy you'll find out that Prefect Penelope Clearwater is Head Girl. You will befriend her and Court her. She will make an excellent political wife when you start your rise to Minister for Magic. What the!” his eyes filled with tears, “Ollie, I was pregnant. He didn’t even ask me what I wanted. He murdered our child!” his voice had gone extremely high-pitched and then he seemed to fall apart, “He called me a slut.”

Oliver was furious, absolutely incensed, that bastard dared accuse him of nonconsensual sex with his Percy but had mind raped his lover and murdered their child? He forced his anger down, moving to take Percy in his arms, “It’s okay, I’m here. You’re not alone anymore. I swear on the sword of Godric Gryffindor I’ll get justice for you. Our child may not have breathed once but they shall be avenged.” He kissed him chastely, “I want you and I know you want me but before we do that we need to come to terms with our hurts. The last thing I want to do is hurt you further. We will mourn our child but first we will have to tell your brothers and your father. If your father is a Gryffindor at heart, he will want to avenge the murder of his grandchild.”

Percy thanked Merlin and Gryffindor for a lover like Oliver, he clung to him and together they grieved the lost of the child they hadn’t known about until it was too late. Mum would no doubt agree with Dumbledore and call him a slut, telling him that Oliver would ruin his life but who else would accept him?

After about an hour of mutual sorrow, mourning their child Percy finally fell asleep.

Oliver wrote a quick letter to Fred and George, insisting they ask Bill, Charlie and their father to meet him in Hogsmeade in three days time.

He could only hope they would do the right thing…

Chapter Text

Chapter sixteen

 

Harry and Draco had been sent up to bed after another trying attempt to deal with yet another of Harry’s memories of living with the Dursleys. Severus had true to his word offered up a memory of his abusive childhood. Both were heart wrenching but sharing the memories and knowing that you were believed helped put each one to rest.

 

Dumbledore, having quite turned the Malfoys, Remus, the Tonks, Harry, Sirius I, Oliver and Percy against him by his cruel lies at the Council of Magical Law. They had decided unanimously that the incumbent but incompetent and powermad Headmaster had to go.

 

As if his cruel mindrape of Percy and terrorizing of a teenage Severus wasn’t evil enough, he’d murdered their children.

 

“I want him ruined!” Lucius growled, it was one thing for Severus to tell him watered down tales of his life with his parents but to actually see the horrors he lived and know that Dumbledore did everything he could to make his mate’s life hell was repugnant.

 

“No thanks to you mere threats won’t work.” Severus muttered giving Lucius a dark look filled with censure.

 

Remus’ eyes narrowed, not sure what his mate was referring too but sure he wouldn’t like it.

 

“What we need is detailed intelligence.” Sirius I said, his arms resting on the arms of his chair while his fingers were steepled.

 

Dora’s eyes twinkled with mirth, “Perhaps, I can be of assistance.”

 

Sirius turned to observe her, “How so?”

 

“Well I am an Auror and I scored well on our Surveillance and convert investigation lessons.” Dora chuckled, altering her appearance to perfectly copy Lucius’.

 

Sirius I clapped his hand, “Capital I say. Metamorphmagus, you do come from my line.”

 

“How would you go about it?” Severus asked a bit disturbed to see this young woman wearing his Bondmate’s face.

 

Dora shrugged, “I’ve been working non-stop since I became a full-fledged Auror, in fact, I am the last person who was accepted into Auror training. Being a Hufflepuff I wasn’t expected to finish training, they actually had a betting pool going on how long it would take before I dropped out. I think Mad-Eye pushed me harder to make me drop out and instead made me one of the best. The only time off I’ve taken is when I’ve been injured in the field. I have two or three months of vacation waiting around for me to decide to use it; maybe more, I’d have to check. Head Auror Scrimgour is quite annoyed with me I believe because I’m hardly ever not at work.  If it weren’t for my Metamorphmagus abilities and my skill at deep cover or mimicry, he’d drive me out. Thank Hufflepuff I’m between Deep Cover assignments and I can be free as soon as you like Lord,”

 

“Lucius please. I may no longer be Bonded to your aunt but I’d still like to be considered family. I would like you to start right away, the sooner Dumbledore is ripped from his place as Headmaster and other positions of authority as well as ruined in both reputation and monetary matters I maybe content.”

 

“Very well I shall inform Scrimgour that I’ll be on ‘vacation’ until further notice. I am authorized to use any means to discover any secrets about Albus Dumbledore?”

 

“Yes, any means necessary to discover his secret, the darker the secrets the better.” Lucius practically purred.

 

“By the way, don’t bother with invisibility cloaks or disillusionment type charms. Dumbledore has evidently evolved magically to be able to see through them or so he brags. He also claims to be able to see through Glamours.” Severus added.

 

“Helga grant me serenity! That boggles things up.” Dora grumbled.

 

“Can you alter the aura of your magical signature?” Sirius asked.

 

Dora smirked, “Best one in the entire department.”

 

“That is beneficial to our endeavours.” Severus observed mildly.

 

“I wonder what deep, dark secrets he’d hiding?” Dora licked her lips in anticipation as her features rearranged to her normal appearance of shocking purple hair and black opal eyes.

 

“He was raised in Godric’s Hollow for a while. I remember Dumbledore mentioning his younger brother owned and managed the Hogshead pub in Hogsmeade.” Severus mused.

 

Lucius’ lips were tight. “I believe his name is Aberforth. I think he was arrested for something years ago. Father thought it was funny, he thought Dumbledore should have done the prudent thing and disowned his idiot brother before he could embarrass him in such a way. Xeno’s oddness was why Father disowned him before he could embarrass the Malfoy name. There’s been muttering for years about an intimate relationship between Dumbledore and Wizengamot member Elphias Doge.”

 

Dora snickered, “I know what, I’ll investigate under the persona of someone researching for a tell-all in-depth investigation of into the life of Dumbledore. I plan on sending a copy of my investigation to Rita Skeeter if I turn up anything juicy. She’d sell her soul to write a book exposing Dumbledore’s ‘Dark Side’.” Her expression turned sombre, “Especially if two anonymous former students mentioned forced abortions and mindrape.”

 

Severus winced, Lucius glared and Remus growled.

 

“It would be something she would be interested in hearing.” Dora protested, “What happened to Professor Prince-Malfoy is too late to be prosecuted, unless Lucius tried under the Archaic Laws. A spell making someone infertile that is only allowed by the Ministry for truly horrific crimes and only if decided by the Council of Magical Law. In the case of former Head Boy Percy Weasley, the crime only occurred less then two years ago so the statute of limitations hasn’t ran out yet. If they; Oliver, the Weasley and Wood Patriarchs filed charges they would probably stick.

 

Ted stroked his chin in thought, “I wonder what would have motivated such cruelty? Manipulation, terrorizing and an illegal spell that not only got rid of Severus’ pregnancy but rendered him infertile was beyond callus. In the case of young Mr. Weasley, his pregnancy was unknown to himself until isn’t discovery and summarily destroyed by the headmaster. The spell Severus mentioned prior is common but should only be cast by a healer familiar with such spells. I wonder why the cases were treated differently.”

 

“What goes on in that twisted man’s head? Why was HE sent after Grindelwald I wonder?” Sirius I muttered eyes closed in thought.

 

Why indeed, Severus asked himself.

 

XoooooX

 

Receiving Oliver’s letter had been a shock but Fred and George remembered with a tremble how their former Quidditch captain had worked them almost to death and like loyal subjects, they sent off letters to their father, grandfather and two elder brothers. The tone of Oliver’s letter was neither jovial nor reminiscent. In their most audacious escape ever they used any number of secret passages to arrive at the statue of the humpbacked witch led to the cellar of Honeyduke’s. They arrived about seven to find a brooding Oliver staring into his firewhiskey.

 

Fred was about to make a joke that he looked as if his best friend just died but George shook his head before disappearing to order them some butterbeers. Instead he sat next his friend, “So what’s up?”

 

Oliver attempted to give him a smile but failed, “I’ll explain with everyone’s here and I’ve got a very powerful privacy charm up.”

 

By the time George returned with their drinks, both their dad and grandfather had arrived.

 

Oliver attempted to smile, “Thank you for coming on such short notice. I only wish it had been under happier circumstances.”

 

Bill and Charlie who Oliver remembered fondly arrived in time to hear the last of his short speech.

 

Oliver gestured for them to sit and cast a powerful privacy spell, as well as wards to warn him if it was either attempted to be taken down or if someone was attempting to listen. “I need to know how far you would go for family.”

 

The six Weasley men stared at him as if he’d said he was giving up magic to live as a Muggle and watch something called the ‘telly’ all day long.

 

“What?” Septimus Weasley glared at the young man, insulted, “How,”

 

“Pardon my interruption sir but I mean no offence. If a member of your family was cruelly violated by someone you trusted implicitly, how far would you go to avenge them?” Oliver said softly.

 

Bill’s eyes narrowed, “If it were any of my siblings I would want justice.”

 

The twins nodded, “Agreed. Unless it was Ron and he deserved it.”

 

Charlie said thoughtfully, “I love all my family and I would do my best to endure they received justice.”

 

Arthur nodded, “I love all my children and would do my best to ensure they were treated fairly. If they were hurt, I would do my best to help them recover as well as seek at least some justice.”

 

Septimus nodded in assent.

 

Oliver licked his lips, “Even if the person violated was Percy?”

 

They gasped as if he’d cursed Godric to the depths of hell.

 

“Who’d get the better of Big Head Boy?” the twins asked.

 

Oliver glared at them, “Don’t you dare call him that! His prattishness that year wasn’t his fault.”

 

“We always.”

 

“knew you.”

 

“Were sweet on him.”

 

The twins finished each other’s sentence out of habit.

 

Oliver glared at them, “I wasn’t sweet on him. We were best friends who fell in love until some arsehole decided it wouldn’t do to have Prefect Percival Weasley bent and in love with some pathetic Quidditch freak.”

 

Fred was incensed, “Who dared say that about you?”

 

“You were the best captain we ever had besides Charlie.” George added.

 

Charlie nodded, “I would have been proud to have you as a brother.”

 

Bill shrugged, “If you make Percy happy, I have no objection.”

 

“So what happened to our poor maligned brother Percy?” Fred and George asked together.

 

Oliver gulped, “He was called into see the Headmaster after Ginny was rescued from the chamber of Secrets to ask how you all were taking it. You know the near loss of Ginny, the knowledge that she opened the Chamber and set the monster on her fellow students as well as her subsequent punishment about having to scrub bedpans without magic for months on end. Dumbledore offered Percy Veritaserum-laced tea and asked him about his future plans. After Percy told about us and how we planned to move in together after Hogwarts, the Headmaster declared it wouldn’t do. He used the imperious on Percy and told him that, I quote, ‘Now listen you little ingrate. You're a Weasley, you're going into the Ministry and that Quidditch obsessed idiot is just going to hold you back. You will forget about him and have nothing more to do with him. Now when you receive your badge as Head Boy you'll find out that Prefect Penelope Clearwater is Head Girl. You will befriend her and Court her. She will make an excellent political wife when you start your rise to Minister for Magic.”

 

There were six voices of pure outrage and Oliver was glad for his privacy charm but had the beginnings of a headache.

 

“How dare he?” came twin hisses of anger.

 

“Who Percy sees is none of his bloody business.”

 

“He should keep his broken nose out of other people’s personal lives.”

 

“He had no right to say that to a son of mine.”

 

“Arrange a Courting between my grandson and the Clearwater heiress without my consent?”

 

“I didn’t know any of this until just before I sent my letter to the twins. Dumbledore threatened me you see, he told me that Percy came to him and told him I pressured him into a sexual relationship. He accused me of raping the person I loved, he told me if I even so much as talked to Percy, that he would turn me into the Aurors. He’d wiped Percy’s memory of our relationship to help him recover. I was heartbroken. When I found out he’d mindraped Percy and made him forget against his will. I was furious.” His gripped the handle of his mug of firewhiskey so tight that he shattered the handle.

 

“That’s not all, is it?” Charlie asked.

 

Oliver shook his head, looking up his eyes filled with terrible anger, pain and lost, “That bastard killed our child. Percy didn’t even know he was pregnant and neither did I.”

 

For a minute there was utter silence.

 

Fred and George cracked their knuckles.

 

“Oh he’ll pay alright. Isn’t that right Forge?” Fred was absolutely outraged, he was quick to decide a grievance and slow to forgive real betrayal.

 

“Yes Gred, he’ll rue the day he made an enemy of the Weasley twins.” George said.

 

“I’m glad I was supposed to be here soon. I’ll have to stop by and check on Percy.” Charlie said looking both worried and furious at the same time. You could see barely restrained anger and fury, had he been holding anything it would have shattered in his clenched fist.

 

“I may get temporarily assigned to London. I can’t help Percy working out of Egypt.” Bill said in a voice tight with righteous anger.

 

“I can’t believe after all we’ve done for the Order and the side of Light that this would be our reward; the murder of my grandchild.” Arthur rarely let himself get worked up about anything.

 

“I doubt Molly would believe this tale. That will cause a rift between her and her ‘favourite son’.” Septimus said thoughtfully.

 

Oliver about collapsed, “You believe me.”

 

Fred and George hugged him

 

“You git. Of course we do.” Fred punched him playfully in the shoulder.

 

“Mom sent us a nasty letter asking us if we knew where Percy moved and we told her we hadn’t the faintest clue.” George added.

 

“I know where he is but Percy can’t dealt with your mother right now. We’re going to have to take it slow because after what Dumbledore did to both of us and we both need to deal with the pain of losing our child so cruelly.” Oliver said with obvious anguish, “When we’re ready to try again,” he implored Septimus and Arthur with his eyes, “I want to court him properly. I am sorry I was imprudent enough to get him pregnant when we were Sixth Years but I love him with all my heart.”

 

Arthur pat him on the back, “If you make him happy and that’s what he wants I have no objections.”

 

Septimus nodded, “It took great courage to request all of us and to tell us what you have. Like Arthur said, if it’s what Percy wants.”

 

Oliver chewed on his lip, “I want him to be happy. He wouldn’t even let me hold him after he invited me in until after he told me everything. I hate Dumbledore for what he’s done to us. Percy’s so shy and uncomfortable with his age mates and he has a difficult time making friends. This betrayal is going to scar him for a long time. I just hope he can recover from this, I love him so much. I can’t believe Lord Malfoy,”

 

Arthur’s eyes flashed, “What did he do now? I heard he had something to do with Ginny and the Chamber of Secrets.” He was always more likely to believe the worst of a Malfoy.

 

Oliver winced, “He helped Percy move by offering him an apartment in a building he owns. He invited the owner of Puddlemere United and I out to lunch the other day. When the owner slipped out to the loo, he told me Percy wanted to see me and gave me the address. He warned me that Percy needed me to be calm. He asked me about my years in Hogwarts first and asked me if I had a friend. I was very vague until he called me on it and told me he knew it was Percy. I admitted what Dumbledore told me and he told me it was a lie. I knew it had been or at least I hoped it was. I was so lonely and hurt, I didn’t understand. One minute we were inseparable and the next, Dumbledore all but accused me of rape and threatened to call the Aurors on me if I didn’t leave Percy alone. He admitted to me he made Percy forget us…”

 

“Well, I’m not sure how much I believe of his interview at the Ministry. I hope Harry didn’t cheat to get into that Tournament.” Arthur muttered.

 

The twins shifted nervously.

 

“We feel awful.” Fred chewed on his bottom lip.

 

“Yeah,” George stared into his Butterbeer, “We owe Harry a lot”

 

“Without him we wouldn’t have won all those games, especially against Slytherin.” They said remorsefully.

 

“We’ll have to send him a letter.”

 

“apologizing for being jealous.”

 

“and not bothering to ask.”

 

“should have known Harry’s no cheater.”

 

“Besides every time little Miss know-it-all mentioned the death toll.”

 

“Harry was shaking and pale.”

 

“We’ll have to come by and visit Percy soon.” Arthur said.

 

“Yes and assure our grandson of our support. If Percy weren’t so sensitive and the crimes so heinous, I’d tell him to just forget about and get over it. I am not as foolish as all that. I expect you’ll see to it that he sees someone one.” Septimus fixed Oliver in his gaze.

 

Oliver nodded, “Percy mentioned a Ted Tonks, we’ll see if we can make an appointment.”

 

“Good. I’ll ask Cedrella to make him some meals he can just use a warming charm on. I never understood what you saw in that Molly, son. She wasn’t cut out of the same cloth as her brothers.” Septimus said glaring at Arthur.

 

The Weasleys soon parted ways and Oliver made his way back to Percy, satisfied that his brothers and father as well as grandfather were as honourable as he thought.

 

 

Chapter Text

Chapter 17

 

 

Remus, Lucius and Severus decided that on November 19, the five of them would be returning to Hogwarts. On Wednesdays and Fridays, Ted had agreed to floo into Severus’ office to have sessions with Harry and Severus.

 

Harry was very nervous about returning, he didn’t know how to deal with Ron and Hermione. He also knew they would take his new relationship with Draco as a betrayal.

 

They were sitting at the breakfast table when the mail started to arrive.

 

A cheap barn owl that clearly belonged to Hogwarts landed in front of Harry, it carried a small box wrapped in brown paper and tied with string that secured a letter to the box.

 

Harry opened the letter.

 

‘Harry mate,

 

We’ve been right gits. You have every right to be angry at us. We failed you. We’ve always seen you as a little brother but at the first test of honour we betrayed you. We humbly beg your forgiveness and off up these gifts in hopes of reconciliation.

 

In this box you’ll find plenty of Weasley inventions complete with descriptions of what they do. We hope you’ll use them to prank Ickly Ronnikins who is a right nasty git. We despair of him often and doubt he’ll come to a good end. He’s spent every day since you left with Malfoy and Snape saying awful things about you. Rest assured Gred and Forge are on the case and he shall be properly punished many times over. As for Hermione she’s the same as ever, completely disappointed in your ‘so-called cheating’. She thinks you should have owned up to it instead of getting out of it like you did. We await your wishes in regards to her punishment.

 

We also included using what little money we’ve earned since the beginning of term to buy you chocolate frogs and your favourite Honeydukes chocolate bars. We throw ourselves at your mercy and will accept any punishment you desire humbly. We only ask that you continue to regard us as friends.

 

Our deepest, humblest apologies,

 

Gred and Forge’

 

Harry laughed; it was so Gred and Forge. At least he hadn’t lost the Weasleys entirely; Percy was apparently on their side. The specifics of that hadn’t been explained to him, he guessed it had something to do with help he gave them to help get him out of that terrible contract. He hugged himself deciding that he would forgive them. He dearly loved Fred and George, especially for giving him the Marauders map that belonged to his father. Now he didn’t believe his dad was as wonderful as everyone said but he was still his dad. He was saddened that James Potter perhaps, had more in common with Dudley to whom he shared no blood.

 

Draco hadn’t read over his shoulder, respecting his friend’s privacy but shook him gently.

 

Harry glanced at the letter a moment before handing it to his new friend and tearing open the box.

 

Inside were Skiving snack boxes complete with the candy that made you appear sick and it’s counter candy to make you well again. Also there were something called Canary creams that, it looked like George’s handwriting but you could never be sure, claimed turned you into a canary for seven minutes of feathered fun. Some extendable ears and other Weasley inventions but what he enjoyed most was the chocolate.

 

Harry unwrapped a chocolate frog; barely noticing the card that accompanied it was Dumbledore. He tossed it into the air where it burst into flames and then crumbled into ash, he moaned. “Merlin I love chocolate.”

 

Draco looked up from the letter, his fourteen-year-old groin reacting strongly to the moan that fell from Harry’s lips. He decided his first courting gift would be chocolate, he saw the pleasure the simple sweet gave his future mate and he had the nearly overwhelming desire to kiss the chocolate stained mouth.

 

Harry felt Draco’s eyes on him and looked up to see an unfamiliar look in those silver eyes. Something warmed inside him and he felt like he would purr.

 

Severus glanced from them to Lucius and chuckled under his breath. Sometimes, Draco reminded him so much of his father…

 

Although in Severus' case, it was rare but expensive caramel-filled cauldron-shaped dark chocolates, which were something like an upside-down Muggle truffle.

 

XoooooX

 

Despite his vigorous attempts to keep the Department of International Relations running smoothly, Oliver pursuaded him to agree to a ten o‘clock appointment at his apartment with Mind Healer Ted Tonks. Percy had, due to nightmares of having his child in varying states of age ripped from him from womb to babe in arms, finally agreed.

 

Oliver was quite worried for him having spent nights on his couch since Lord Malfoy brought them back together. Waking many times a night to hear Percy crying in his sleep and begging Dumbledore to return his child. It broke his heart to hear the man he loved brought down so low by such cruelty. Despite Percy’s shyness and fierce devotion to his studies as well as prefect duties, he had always seemed strong. Then again growing up with a domineering mother, a silent but no doubt loving father but lost in the middle of six brothersm Percy was a product of his home environment. His best friend and former yet hopeful soon-to-be once again his lover had never learned to rely on anyone but himself. Percy was clearly isolated, being close to none of his brothers.

 

Bill had been also a serious student, sometime Quidditch player but more social and had seemingly enjoyed being Head Boy more then Percy had. He always wondered why such a shy boy who cringed at social events would be drawn to the position of Minister for Magic. Percy would be unhappy because there was far too much socializing involved.

 

Charlie was more drawn to the outdoors, falling in love with forests, exploring, flying and tending to Hagrid’s increasing menagerie of magical creatures. Charlie would devour any book old or new regarding the subject of any and all magical creatures but particularly Dragons. He remembered visiting and hearing Charlie whooping through The Burrow after being invited to apprentice at the Harvey Ridgebit's Dragon Sanctuary by it’s current director Dragomir Ionescue. He hadn’t had any real hope but he’d wanted to work there more so then flying for any Professional Quidditch team even if he’d been offered to fly for England.

 

The twins, you couldn’t find three brothers more different. The energy that Percy threw into his studies, Fred and George just laughed at. Though arguable brilliant, school bored them and they put little effect into their classes. They laughed when they told him how many of their OWLS they believed they might pass, which were few. They cared more about inventing and striking out on their own. Oliver would be quite surprised if they stayed to take their NEWTS because they detested school, resented the concept of mandatory education and their overbearing mother. The first opportunity they could split, he had little doubt that they would.

 

Percy worried most about Ron, rightly so for the boy had no leaning to study and took any excuse to prevent Potter from it. He clearly resented Harry’s allowance to fly as Gryffindor’s seeker despite the rules that prevented First Years from bringing brooms to school. Percy had turned a blind eye to Ron’s machinations that forced Harry to rely too heavily on Hermione’s assistance to pass classes. Even to the point, Ron had the poor Muggleborn witch all but doing their homework for him. How was he supposed to learn? He blamed himself, as Harry’s Captain he should have spoke up and insisted he study properly instead of turning a blind eye to it as well.

 

Ginny being the only girl in the Weasley family at all, Percy was definitely not close to her. He tried, especially after almost losing her in the Chamber of Secrets but they would never be close. She was still as shy and as quiet as ever when they graduated the next year. Despite sharing the same House at Hogwarts, he couldn’t name one person she was close to. Honestly, he worried about that…

 

Oliver shook his head; since Percy was going in late and had a terrible night, as usual, he resolved to let him sleep as long as possible. For some reason if he woke Percy, held him as he cried until his beloved finally drifted into an exhausted sleep, he’d noticed as long as he held him, Percy didn’t have nightmares.

 

Percy finally woke, smelling the familiar scent of grass, soap and mint shampoo, he felt at home perhapsm for the first time in his life. He snuggled closer to Oliver; “It’s been a comfort to have you here with me.”

 

Oliver rubbed his back chastely and kissed his forehead, “I’m sorry you suffered some much but I’m here now.”

 

Percy swallowed, “You won’t leave me? Please I want you to stay, I want us to live together like we promised.”

 

“We will, we just need time.”

 

Time… that broke Percy’s heart. Time, they’d already lost so much. He wanted Oliver to say he wanted to fight for what they had, he wanted to get back their old shy but easy intimacy but aside from comforting him because of his nightmares, Oliver was always giving him space. He didn’t want space! He wanted Oliver; he wanted to feel like despite having their child cruelly ripped from his womb that his boyfriend still wanted him.

 

Oliver whispered a tempus charm, noting it was after nine and Healer Tonks was due at ten, he nudged Percy. “We need to dress and eat. The healer will be here soon.”

 

Feeling like that was dismissal, Percy bit his lip and reluctantly left the warmth and comfort of Oliver’s arms to shower. He silently berated himself for his neediness. He’d never been like this before and he was terrified that if he pushed that he would lose Oliver forever. That thought nearly brought him to his knees, he could hardly breathe. If he lost Oliver again, he was fearful it might kill him. He doubted he could admit that out loud for fear it would make his ex-boyfriend pity him. The last thing he wanted was his pity…

 

Oliver would have to be blind not to see Percy’s pain; he hated himself for causing it but he didn’t know how to help him, he too was hurting. He loved Percy, so completely that losing him made him throw everything he had into Quidditch, because he felt he had nothing left. He worked his team almost to the point of collapse; he regretted it now but being cut off from his friend and feeling keenly the accusations of something so abhorrent as rape had cut him deeply. He knew now that Percy would never have said anything that cruel or untrue but he couldn’t just wish away over a year and a half’s worth of pain. He had been wracked with jealousy seeing his Percy being coming so close with Penelope Clearwater and wondering how she could possibly be right for him. Percy was so utterly a keeper in bed, that even the thought of being with a girl had his best friend wrinkle his nose and call it nauseating.

 

Deciding against a shower, Oliver cast Refreshing charms on himself, dressing in somewhat clean clothes before heading into Percy’s small kitchen to heat up some breakfast casserole his grandmother Cedrella had sent over with a Weasley house elf the day after his meeting in Hogshead with six members of the Weasley family.

 

He also made coffee remembering how partial to it Percy had always been.

 

The Percy that finally emerged was subdued and quiet, accepting silently the plate with some breakfast casserole on it and a cup of steaming coffee. Sitting near the fire shivering for some reason as he attempted to eat.

 

At ten o’clock on the dot, there was a knock on the door.

 

When a silent Percy made no move to answer Oliver choose to greet their visitor.

 

Ted Tonks took one look at Percy and blinked, “Sweet Merlin.” He hurried to his side, casting diagnostic charms and winced, “I thought so.”

 

Oliver was thoroughly confused, “What’s wrong?” his worry and concern warring with his fear.

 

“This whole experience is crippling him.” Ted said warily, “Though I understand why Severus did what he did, he didn’t have the finesse or my training. Percy had no way to handle such memories of his gross violation.”

 

“I see.” Oliver said dumbly.

 

“No, you don’t.” Ted said with finality. “You don’t know how to handle it. This is something neither of you should have to deal with. A child you didn’t even know you were expecting was stolen from you but more from Percy. I suspect he’s always wanted a close family and hoped to have one with you.”

 

Oliver nodded; they had discussed that before Dumbledore meddled.

 

“I fear he believe you don’t want him anymore.”

 

Percy shivered more violently.

 

“His main issue, I believe is that he clearly never formed an attachment when he was younger to a parent. So, in his naïve way, he bonded emotionally and physically to you, I’m not discounting your love at all, don’t mistake that. To him you’re back but you aren’t, and he is clearly suffering.” Ted said softly.

 

“I don’t know how to help him. My family has always been close but his is so isolated from each other. I love him I do but the story Dumbledore told all though I know it was false, it still pains me that I dared believe it. I don’t know how to explain…”

 

“What did he tell you?”

 

Oliver swallowed, “That soon after Ginny’s near death in the Chamber of Secrets, Percy went to see him and told him that I pressured him into a physical relationship. Dumbledore heavily implied that in his humble opinion, I’d raped Percy.” His hands clenched into fists, “I would sooner have broken my broom and swore never to fly again, then to have done something so heinous. To hear that my sweet, shy Percy who only wanted to be loved would tell such a lie to the Headmaster, broke my heart. Dumbledore told me under no uncertain terms was I to have any contact with Percy. That Percy had been so terrified that he had to remove any and all memory of our so-called relationship. That if I even so much as spoke to Percy, he would send Percy’s memories to the Aurors and see that I was arrested.”

Oliver swallowed, feeling so unbearably shaken at admitting to this to this near stranger, "He told me he was sure I hadn’t meant to be bad and that he was going to against his better judgment give me a second chance. That to prove myself worthy I was to give Percy a wide berth and neither speak, write or look at him. Every word he spoke was like a dagger to my heart and a nail in my coffin of my future and present happiness. We had been so much a part of each other that I was lost, I threw myself into Quidditch but I had no one to impress or to be proud of me but flying was the only solace I had.”

 

“I am sorry that you’ve suffered so, I can only hope that someday you see Dumbledore punished for what he’s done to the both of you. You are letting your despair and anger at Dumbledore affect your ability to comfort Percy. He puts on a mask at work but a skilled observer can see his suffering. If left like this, he will be nothing more then a shell in a short time. I may have been asked too late.”

 

Oliver broke down, tears streaming down his cheeks. “I don’t know what to do. I know he needs me, but I’m afraid if we try to pick up where we left off, it will prove to be too much for him.”

 

“So in short you’ve given him no proof that you still love him.”

 

A silent Percy began rocking slowly, making no sound as he began to cry. His arms wrapped around himself as if trying to embrace something that wasn’t there.

 

Seeing Percy so quiet and weepingm hurt Oliver but he had no idea what he was supposed to do. “I’m so lost. I want to help but I don’t know how. I don’t blame him; it’s not his fault. When he sleeps he must have nightmares, he wakes me up crying in his sleep for our child. He always talked in his sleep but he begs, pleads and cries for our child. All I can do for him is wake him and hold him until he cries himself to sleep. He seems to sleep peacefully if I hold him but if I attempt to return to the couch, he soon is crying in his sleep again.”  

 

Ted sighed, “I have more experience with abused persons, not that I’m discounting that Percy was abused but clearly not by you. His abuse was abuse of power, his mind clearly assaulted as well as the forced abortion that was given in a moment of rage, as I understand it. Not that I can fathom what would cause such hostility. Percy needs you, he needs to be assured that you still love him.”

 

“I do.” Oliver protested weakly.

 

“Then why haven’t you SHOWED IT?” Ted asked.

 

Oliver swallowed, “Because I’m afraid he’ll push me away.” He admitted lamely.

 

Ted glared at him, “Does he look like he can?”

 

Oliver shook his head.

 

“He needs you to hold him. He needs you to assure him that you still love him, that you still want to make your adolescent dreams of being together real.” Ted had to be cruel to be kind, something he detested. Gryffindors made the WORST patients because of their stubbornness and other ridiculous qualities. Hufflepuffs made the best Mind Healers because they were open, honest, good listeners, hard workers and eager to help. Wooing a Slytherin took all of that as well as phenomenal patience. Slytherins for all their faults were probably the most love-starved of all, with the exception of young Percy who was so close in age to his beloved Dora.

 

Oliver knelt beside Ted and Percy, his face still streaked with tears he hadn’t bothered to wipe away. He held out shaking arms for Percy.

 

Relieved that this young man was waking up, Ted placed the quiet, barely shaking, hardly breathing form of young Percy in Oliver’s arms.

 

Oliver rocked him, pressing a kiss to his temple, “I’m sorry. I didn’t know how to help. I’ve been pushing you away, haven’t I? Forgive me please. I still love you, I always have. Deep down, I know you know this. Don’t shut me outm Percy. Let me help you. You don’t have to mourn alone.”

 

Those simple quiet words that took nearly a week to speak somehow managed to pierce through the walls that were slowly shutting Percy off from the world. He was there but not there since he’d found out what had been done to him. He had felt so alone, Severus had admitted to a slightly similar event but he was sure that no one could truly understand him. He had wanted a family so badly, to allow his to be taken without a fight tore at his soul. He cried for his lost baby that hadn’t had the chance to grow up to have a name, he cried because he hadn’t had the opportunity to love it or to share the news that they would be parents with the person he loved. He clung to Oliver, “I want my baby!” he repeated the weak plea over and over.

 

Oliver rocked him, “I’m sorry. I know. I wish I could have protected you. I wish I could give our son back to you.” He knew it was a boy, boys were common in Percy’s family and he knew there weren’t many girls born to his line either.

 

Ted waited until they both calmed down some, “I have some homework for you before our next appointment.”

 

At the word ‘homework’ two pairs of red-rimmed eyes looked up at him in matched confusion.

 

“You are to sit and talk, to gain closure I want you to pick a name for your son. Explain to both your families that you need to procure a gravestone or another similar marker, have the name engraved upon it and place it either with the Weasleys or the Woods. You need a place to go to mourn the baby. Don’t bother questioning me, you know I’m right. As for ceremony make it as simple as you want. You need your family at a time like this. When I return on Tuesday I expect to hear about it.” His Annie’s Mind Healer had proscribed a similar treatment for their two miscarriages; she had been far enough along to know gender when she lost them. The first had been a son, Edward Pollux and then a second daughter Alkyone Eirene. Although allowing her to have a permanent contraceptive charm placed on her womb after losing Alkyone or Allie as he called in his heart was painful, losing Annie would be worse. He wished that he could have his family; Annie, Dora, Teddy and Allie but he was content to have Annie and Dora, he just hoped that Dora would have an easier time giving birth then her mother.

 

Percy’s heart ached, a name… a name for a child he didn’t even get to hold or even see.

 

Oliver knew that Healer Tonks’ ‘homework’ was more for Percy’s benefit but he understood he needed it to. Naming their son and putting him to rest was the only way they could recover from this blow. He nodded, “We’ll do it.”

 

“And another thing, far be it from me to tell anyone how to handle their sex life but Oliver, I forbid you to sleep on the couch. You will share his bed if only to help him relax and avoid nightmares, those dreams are eating away at his sanity and he can’t afford to let them torture him because the loss of his child is not and never will be his fault.” Ted said firmly.

 

Oliver nodded, knowing Healer Tonks had a point. Percy needed him; he’d failed him so much already. He couldn’t continue to make or let Percy suffer. “I promise not to make him sleep alone.”

 

“I also want you to request mild calming draughts from Professor Prince-Malfoy. I believe you would both do well to take them. No Dreamless sleep potions though, you could become too dependent upon them like a young patient of mine and overuse them until they begin losing their effectiveness. I believe that relying on such potions is a sort of crutch. You have to fight to rise above this, losing a child is hard on anyone, but even more so on someone of your tender years.” Ted said kindly, “I don’t wish to be harsh but you have to work together. You’ll always ache for your son and wish you could have raised him together but you can’t change the past. Your child would want to see you two loving each other and giving him siblings. I’m sure he would never wish you pain. Someday you’ll be reunited with him, and I’m sure you want him to be proud of you.” Those were words he and Annie had been told many times following her miscarriages.

 

Oliver hugged Percy, nodding fiercely.

 

Percy leaned into Oliver’s embrace, “I… do want him to be proud of us…”

 

“Very well. I do think you would do yourself a lot of good if you didn’t go into work today. I don’t believe forcing yourself to act as if all is well would be very wise. I recommend a quiet day, in the company of the man I can tell loves you. You have much to discuss.” Ted showed himself out the apartment.

 

Oliver didn’t let go; he felt a rush of love and compassion for his beloved Percy that made him hold him close. “So, what do you think about his homework?”

 

Percy blushed, “I think it’s exactly what we need. How can I hope to let our child go so we can have a life together if we don’t give them a name?”

 

Oliver smiled, “Well, due to our Elvin ancestry it is the Wood preference to give each child a name that has elf in it. I’ve always been partial to the name Alvin it means ‘elf friend’.

 

Percy said quietly, “Weasleys usually name their sons after names from Arthurian legends. When we were in school, I often thought of the name Drystan. He was an advisor to Arthur and it means herald.” He didn’t mention that the name also meant ‘full of sorrow’… that was how he felt though; full of sorrow…

 

Oliver rolled the name on his tongue, “Alvin Drystan. Alvin Drystan, I like the sound of it. Do you want him to be a Wood or a Weasley?”

 

Percy swallowed, “I used to want to be Percival Bryan Wood.”

 

Oliver laughed kissing him softly, “Well, I have no objection to that; if that is still what you want.”

 

Percy bit his bottom lip to hold back a soft moan, “Yes.”

 

“Very well, our son’s name is Alvin Drystan Wood. I say we thumb our noses at the old codger and publicly announce our intentions to be Bonded.”

 

Percy laughed softly, that was more like the exuberant teen he fell in love with. He kissed him back, “You’ll have to ask me properly.”

 

“I’ve already got permission from your family, we just have to inform mine but I did promise to ask you properly once. I planned to ask you at graduation but that didn’t happen.” He had in his head the perfect ring but Dumbledore had split them before he’d had a change to search for or to order it. After he’d been cut out of Percy’s life, he couldn’t bear to think about it. “First we’ll say goodbye to our son and then we’ll get back to planning our life together.”

 

Percy buried his face in Oliver’s neck and sniffed, what had he ever done to deserve a guy like this?

 

Oliver just hugged him, “Hush now. You don’t have to cry. I’m right here Percy, and I promise I’m not going anywhere. You’re stuck with me for good.”

 

They sat there for a long time just holding each other and thanking any and every deity out there for this second chance.

 

XoooooX

 

Dora was glad that due to her Metamorphmagus abilities she had two animagus forms and one was that of a peregrine falcon, she’d been on stake out in the trees seeing if Albus left. A former lover worked for the office that monitored floos and she’d paid him a handsome tip to let her know if the Headmaster’s floo was used for unusual trips or calls. She heard footsteps and looked up.

 

Dumbledore was wrapped up in a dark cloak and was walking faster then a leisurely clip would allow.

 

She flew after him as he left the castle heading towards Hogsmeade.

 

Dumbledore seemed to be whistling as he entered Hogshead, breezing past the man behind the bar who resembled him some.

 

The man glared at Dumbledore and promptly turned his back.

 

Careful to avoid notice Dora followed Dumbledore.

 

The odious man entered a dingy office and made his way to the dusty floo grabbing a handful of floo powder. “Deerfield.” He muttered before disappearing in a flash of green flame.

 

Dora shrugged, Deerfield was home to Elphias Doge so nothing new there. She flew out the window, stood in the shadows as she changed from her animagus form to that of plain young woman of indeterminable age with reddish hair and pale brown eyes.

 

It was near closing, about ten to three when Dumbledore appeared.

 

Dora shadowed him until his return to the castle. Deciding her night was a waste for she had learned nothing she didn’t already know, Dora Apparated back to her parents’ house to rest before going back on duty.

 

 

Chapter Text

Chapter 18-

 

It was the day before Severus, Draco and Harry were to return to Hogwarts with Remus and Lucius.

Harry woke up early to post his letter to the twins, as he made his way to the townhouse's owlry he thought about the contents.

'Dear Gred and Forge,

Thank you so much for the gifts, especially the chocolate. I'm sure I can find an appropriate use for the pranks you sent.

Yes I forgive you for thinking I cheating to enter the Tournament. I would have told you if I had.

I am too grateful for your giving me my father's map to not stay friends with you. I am pleased you see

me as a brother, since I have none I accept the relationship gratefully.

Don't tell Ron but Draco and I have become friends. He is really nice once you

get past his walls, he's helped me study and stay caught up with my classes.

I 've learned so much from him, I can't say he's changed really but I do understand him better.

I don't think Professor Snape, I mean Prince-Malfoy will let him act like he used to. His

f ather Lucius is really nice to me and I'm almost sure his behaviour as I've seen before

is all an act. He got me into Remus' custody; I don't have to go back to the Dursleys anymore.

Can't wait to see you. I hope you get this before I arrive tomorrow. I'm sorry I should have written back sooner.

Harry;

Harry found Hedwig, stroked her feathers offering her an owl treat before tying the letting to her leg. "Take this straight Fred or George. I'd like it to arrive quickly but don't make yourself ill."

She hooted at him indignantly, but pecking his finger affectionately before flying away.

Harry watched until she was out of sight before heading down to breakfast.

XoooooX

Draco spoke up over breakfast, "We need to take Harry shopping. We let the house elves fight over those ludicrous excuses for clothes those Muggles gave him." He smirked, "As much as I enjoy seeing him in mine,"

Harry squeaked blushing at Draco's expression.

Draco chuckled continuing, "Like I was saying, as much as I enjoy seeing him wear mine, he can't continue to wear my clothes. I do have an extensive wardrobe and he can wear my clothes from First Year quite well but he really should have a wardrobe appropriate to the heir to the Potter and Black Houses." He was going to HATE returning to Hogwarts; Harry would be in Gryffindor Tower in the Lions' den and far from him. He had gotten used to falling asleep studying or cuddling with him. He didn't trust those backstabbing cowards in Gryffindor.

New clothes? Other then his Hogwarts uniforms he bought for himself he'd never had new or nice clothes only Dudley's crummy hand-me-downs. Harry wasn't even sure he sure he wanted new clothes, he…liked wearing Draco's clothes. They made him happy, feel safe, so it felt like Draco was always touching him or holding him. He felt content, now he'd lose that? He whispered, "Please? I don't want new clothes and these are so nice. Nicer then I've ever had," he looked up at Draco, wanting him to understand.

Draco smirked, leaning over to press his lips lightly and chastely to Harry's. His Veela might not have been awakened yet but he was very pleased Harry wanted to wear his clothes.

Harry's eyes widened when he felt the touch of Draco's lips on his own, he choked out a moan. He didn't want to go back to school; he wanted to stay with Draco.

Remus was a bit awed by how fast the relationship between the two teenage boys had changed. Harry spent every moment he could with Draco; Severus' adopted son was so gentle and patient with him. Harry had fallen in love with learning and clearly seemed to be getting quite attached to Draco. He wouldn't be a good guardian if he weren't worried how Harry would take being separated from his new best friend. Clearly the seeds for being mates when they were older were being sown. Harry didn't want to make a big deal about it but Draco had told him about Ron and Hermione's letters and how hurt Harry had been only Draco called them Granger and Weasel. After all they'd been through they'd turn their back on Harry and believe the worst? He'd thought they were good kids, so he was furious with them.

Draco went to break the kiss and moved away.

Harry grabbed onto his Slytherin friend's robes and whispered, "You won't stop being my friend because I'm going back to Gryffindor will you?"

Draco smirked, "You're not getting rid of me that easily. You're stuck with me, why don't you join me in the dungeon some nights? I know Blaise will keep it a secret if I pay him what I owe for betting on the wrong person being the Hogwarts champion. I also owe him a couple of Wizarding Chess matches, the least I could do is have a few dreadful matches and let him win. As for Crabbe and Goyle," Draco shrugged, "if I tell them you're cool, then you're alright in their opinion. Nott's I suppose a decent kid, shy and quiet. His dad's abusive; I wish you'd help him out Dad. You know Old Nott isn't stable; he went to school with the Dark Lord."

"Wait! I'm your father not a hero. I can't save everyone." Lucius protested.

Severus rolled his eyes, "I'm surprised you didn't notice Theodore was being abused."

Lucius looked away, "I didn't notice Harry either. I do feel sorry for any child that's abused."

Draco's eyes narrowed, "I should have mentioned it sooner but I was distracted earlier. Theo's in some real trouble, I was going to wait to mention it at Christmas because at Hogwarts he's safe. Nott hasn't been satisfied with just beating Theo or using the Cruciatus on him."

Severus gasped and stiffened, "I knew Nott was bordering on madness but,"

Harry was confused, what were they talking about?

Lucius grimaced, "I'll do my best to get him out. You can rationalize physical abuse, you were bad, and you deserved to be punished, just about anything to not consider that what they are doing it wrong."

Severus swallowed; he'd used the same words on Lucius about how his father treated him.

Lucius scowled, "I was never as happy as when I received your letter that your parents were dead."

Severus glanced up at Remus and then at Lucius, "I was afraid to tell you about what things were like at home. Tobias found out about my baby, he decided I really was a freak not just because I could do magic but because I only looked like a boy."

"I was suspicious but I graduated that year and sneaking away to Hogsmeade or inviting you for a visit was difficult. I wish I had known about the baby or how terrible your father was after that." Lucius said squeezing his hand, "I wanted to protect you."

"I knew that, I just didn't want you in trouble for hurting my parents."

Remus was struck dumb, it almost clear that one of his former students was being beaten and possibly sexually abused by their Death Eater father. He couldn't believe that Severus was admitting to them that he'd been treated just as badly, as if seeing what Severus had looked like after being trapped in a tiny closet for four days hadn't been traumatic enough.

Harry asked quietly, "So, can I just have Draco's old clothes? No one will know they aren't new right?"

Draco felt his cock react, Harry, his future mate didn't want anything new but he wanted to wear his old clothes?

Harry wrapped his arms around himself, "They…make me feel safe and remind me we don't hate each other."

"Well if you won't let us buy you new clothes can I buy you a pet? A familiar?"

Harry blushed more, "I already have Hedwig…"

Draco laughed, "I was thinking something more appropriate for you then an owl. No rats, toads or cats for you."

Harry whispered, "Then what?"

"Well my little Parseltongue speaking Chuvash-to-be I was thinking about finding you a nice snake." Draco teased kissing his nose.

Harry blushed, stammering, "A snake? Really?" contrary to his housemates' opinion, he thought snakes were cool, especially after his conversation with the boa constrictor at the zoo that wanted to travel to Brazil.

Draco chuckled, "Yes, your own snake."

Harry hugged him, "You're the greatest! Can we go now? Please! Please! Please?"

Draco ruffled his hair and kissed his temple, "If my fathers and your guardian will take us."

Lucius chuckled, "I have no objections."

"I need to pick up some potions ingredients anyway." Severus smiled; somehow he was sure Lily would approve of Harry's friendship and future with Draco. His abusive childhood would have infuriated her.

Remus shrugged, "I have no objection."

Draco grinned, "It's settled then. You're getting a snake."

Harry hugged Draco hard, "Thank you, thank you, thank you."

Draco kissed his hair, "It's a small thing."

Harry's eyes filled with tears, shaking his head, "My first birthday present was Hedwig, in fact it was the first present I remember."

Draco knew Harry's childhood had been abusive but his first gift had been an owl from the oaf? He winced; Harry never liked his disrespect of Hagrid or his attempt to get him in trouble after disrespecting the Hippogriff last year. He pretty much brought that on himself. He would have to learn to tolerate that oaf for Harry's sake, if not begrudgingly give him the respect the so-called professor deserved.

Harry saw the wince and looked Draco over for a hurt, "What's wrong?"

Draco kissed his nose, "Nothing, just thinking I should have treated Hagrid like a professor even if he never graduated."

After breakfast they flooed into Diagon Alley.

Remus and Lucius had agreed to take the boys into the menagerie while Severus went to visit the apothecary for potion ingredients.

Severus was working on a potion to help Harry sleep that wasn't based on the Dreamless Sleep potion that was losing effectiveness due to overuse.

Draco held Harry's hand tugging him into the store, "Come on!"

Harry followed shyly.

There was some whispering but due to the articles from varying publications following Lucius' press conference there weren't malicious whispers except from hard nose Death Eater haters.

Inside the Menagerie the boys were soon searching through the collections of snakes.

Harry had run forward to see the cages of snakes unconsciously dragging Draco along in his excitement.

Smiling to himself Draco let Harry drag him along; he enjoyed seeing the shy quiet boy so animated.

Lucius remembered Severus being just as thrilled over copies of rare or new books by potioneers that he would give him.

Remus couldn't remember that James was as exuberant as Harry not even over Quidditch matches, new brooms or dates with Lily.

Harry was greeted with hisses from a variety of snakes; some had been living in their cages at the Menagerie for longer then others. Some magical, some not.

The snake that caught his eyes was a pale white with faint yellow almost gold markings and silver eyes that reminded him briefly of Draco.

"What's your name?" Harry hissed.

"Shishreyu." Was the replying hiss.

Harry stared at the high musical hiss, "Are you a girl?"

She laughed, "I am a dwarf ghost snake, I am capable of becoming invisible if I wish. I've annoyed the men here so they think that I can escape. My larger cousins can get four metres long but I won't get longer then my one and a half metres."

Harry hissed giggling, "I like you. How do you know how long you are?" He held out his hand instinctively.

"I was bred by a Chuvash, he told me." Shishreyu's tongue darted out as if to taste his hand, "You smell honest and pure of heart."

"You licked me." Harry jumped; it tickled.

"No, I smelled you." Shishreyu corrected gently.

Harry smiled up at Draco, "I want Shishreyu." Her name came out as a gentle hiss.

"What?" Draco asked not understanding Parseltongue.

Harry blushed, repeating himself but this time he said her name in English.

"Shishreyu?" Draco asked clarifying the unfamiliar mix of sounds.

Harry nodded, "She is really nice, she said she wouldn't get any bigger."

Shishreyu turned to speak at another snake that was clearly upset.

Harry listened, "Oh no, they're friends." He exclaimed in English.

Draco was surprised at Harry's gasp, "Who are friends?"

Shishreyu turned back to Harry, "We came from the same breeder and hatched at the same time. No one wants him because he is rare and expensive due to his chimera status. Our Breeder called him Paradox; he's a chimera because he is a metre long dwarf Rainbow snake who has both the dominant stripes and the recessive diamond pattern. I never understood how that happened. Everyone wants him but no one can afford him."

Harry repeated the story to Draco who turned to Lucius, "I'm buying Harry Shishreyu. There is a rare snake here named Paradox who is her friend, the Rainbow snake. If I don't have enough for both will you pay for him?"

Lucius knew that Draco was mostly asking for Harry's sake, Harry must really want his snake to be happy. Harry would hate to make any creature unhappy, even a snake. He sighed nodding.

Draco squeezed Harry's hand; "I'll pay for them and then we can take them home."

Harry bounced in excitement. "Thank you! Thank you!"

Draco laughed; Harry was so cute sometimes, as he pulled a velvet bag out of his robes after moving towards the clerk at the counter, "I'll pay for the dwarf Ghost snake and for the chimera Rainbow snake. What you're still owed my father will cover."

The clerk unlocked Shishreyu's cage.

Harry darted forward, holding his arm out.

Shishreyu slithered up Harry's thin arm and coiled herself loosely around her master's shoulders. Hissing, "You're too thin, you should eat more rats."

Harry choked on a laugh, "I know I'm too thin, I'll definitely eat more but I'll leave the rats to you and Hedwig."

"Hedwig?" Shishreyu asked with a hiss.

Harry smiled, "My owl but I think she is more likely to end up your meal rather than the other way around." He knew some owls ate snakes, "I'd prefer you two get along or at least learn to tolerate one another."

Draco nudged Harry, "What was that choking hiss sound about?"

"Shishreyu said I was too thin and that I should eat more rats."

The clerk looked ill.

Lucius had enjoyed catching his own meal once or twice after coming into his Veela inheritance. He hadn't been particularly fond of rats, birds were a more tolerable taste but it was too close to cannibalism. He had preferred other animals instead.

Remus chuckled at the few times he had been so hungry that he'd had to shift, after he'd reluctantly discovered his ability to shift at will when the moon wasn't full and hunt. Not his proudest moments but he'd eaten rats as well as other prey, they weren't so bad but he still preferred chocolate.

Draco was a bit disgusted at the idea of Harry eating rats but didn't say anything about that. "I'm not as acquainted with Paradox as you are with Shishreyu. How to I introduce myself?"

Harry conferred with Shishreyu and nodded before replying. "If the clerk will open his cage, hold your hand just outside the door to he can smell you. It will feel like he'll be licking your hand." Harry addressed Paradox in Parseltongue, "This is Draco Malfoy. He isn't a bad person. He's not Chuvash and he can't talk you yet. I'm going to try to teach him."

Paradox slithered to the front of his cage, "He's really going to take me?"

Harry nodded, "He is."

Draco moved towards the open cage and held out his hand.

Paradox smelled Draco and pulled away, "He isn't human."

Harry hissed back, "He's a Veela but he hadn't come into his inheritance yet. He's really nice, and he loves snakes. Probably because he's a Slytherin."

Paradox stared at Draco, "I'll go with him, but I'm not accepting him as my master yet."

Harry nodded, "I can understand that, do you want to travel like Shishreyu? I think you've probably had enough of cages."

"I hate being caged." Paradox hissed vehemently.

"I can understand the feeling."

Draco had flinched back at the violent hiss.

Harry reached into the cage without fear.

Paradox slithered calmly up his arm.

Harry rest his hand on Draco's arm, "He's not dangerous, at the moment anyway. He was just saying he hates cages."

Draco could understand why someone would hate being locked up like that. "I promise he won't be caged."

Harry passed the promise along to Paradox.

Paradox hissed, "I still don't accept him as my master but I will consent to him carrying me as you do Shishreyu."

Harry nodded, speaking English to Draco, "He wants to leave and wants to curl up on your shoulders like Shishreyu."

Draco agreed, without a cage and since snakes were cold-blooded he didn't have a better option.

Harry passed along Draco's agreement.

Paradox slithered up the young Veela's arm and curled up around his shoulders. "We can go now." He hissed imperiously.

Lucius chuckled having completed the transaction for Draco's snake, "Now that you have your own snake Draco you should probably see if Harry can teach you how to speak Parseltongue. That way you can communicate with Paradox directly, it will facilitate a bond with him if you wish to have a proper master and familiar relationship."

Draco smirked, "Oh I intend to learn if Harry will teach me. You know, flirting in Parseltongue would be the ultimate in Slytherin behaviour."

Harry blushed, shyly translating for the snakes in their company when asked why he changed colour.

Remus chuckled at his charge's blush; it was interesting to see how close the former rivals had gotten so short a time.

Lucius shook his head at his son, "We should go check on Severus. He is probably still haggling with the apothecary at Jigger's.

They exited the Menagerie as a group and made their way to Jigger's.

"That isn't worth more then ten Gallons! I refuse to pay more. I don't care how rare you claim it is or how much you claim it cost you to acquire it. You should know better then to try to cheat a First Class Potions Master. Do you know who you're dealing with?"

"Of course I do! You're Professor Snape, Head of Slytherin House, Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry's resident Potions Master." The apothecary, who was probably Mr. Jigger retorted.

Lucius drawled lazily after overhearing the discussion, "He is actually, Professor Prince-Malfoy, consort and Bondmate to myself, I hold a place on the Hogwarts Board of Governors, a Seat in the Wizengamot and I am on the Committees regarding International Relations and Finance. Severus is also the Head of the Prince line."

The apothecary staggered, "My apologies for being ill-informed but that doesn't change my…price."

Severus glared, "I could take my business elsewhere. I have been a loyal and hopefully valued customer for over twenty years Mr. Jigger. I would have expected you to honour that loyalty by not cheating me. I will not pay more then ten Galleons for the item in question."

"You bankrupt me your Lordship. It cost me twenty!"

Lucius raised an eyebrow, "Was it imported legally?"

Mr. Jigger flushed, "You insult me, of course it was your Lordship."

"I would hate to have to ask the Aurors to look at your books because you were attempting to cheat my Bondmate." Lucius said with a dangerous smile.

Harry shivered, Severus was a bit scary but that smile was frightening. Would Mr. Lucius actually summon Aurors?

"It wouldn't be too difficult to arrange since I am on good terms with the Ministry." Lucius sneered.

Mr. Jigger seemed nervous, "I'll…I can sell it for twelve Galleons to you Professor. I can't afford to go any lower."

Severus wasn't sure if he was upset with Lucius or grateful for his assistance, "Twelve Galleons is your permanent price? I will be needing more of this ingredient as I am researching the creation of a new potion."

The apothecary shifted nervously, "I…suppose we can agree to a fair price such as that for a similar amount."

"Very well." Severus snapped, "add up my intended purchases and we can end this business."

Severus paid the requested amount without further protest as if he was finally content though begrudgingly so at the prices.

"Where should we go now?"

Harry looked around, "I am running low on some things."

Severus held out a bag stiffly, "I already picked them up for you." He held out a separate receipt to Remus, "I expect you will reimburse me. I wasn't sure Harry would remember before we returned to school."

Remus nodded, "I will see to it that the proper funds are sentd to your personal vault."

Harry was surprised.

Remus chuckled, "You see Harry, Severus is merely picking them up for you. He happened to remember you were running low. He wanted to be sure you were prepared for his class. If you had remembered you would have got them yourself. So repaying him would be the proper thing correct?"

Harry nodded, understanding.

Severus held out his hand to the snake on Harry's shoulder, and in stammering Parseltongue addressed it. "My name is Severus Prince-Malfoy."

Shishreyu smelled him, "A polite man you are. You don't speak my tongue like a snake or a Chuvash."

Severus replied, "No, unfortunately I wasn't born knowing your tongue. I was obliged to learn when I found ancient potions texts written in Parseltongue."

Paradox was intrigued, "Wizards found a way to write our language?"

Severus hissed a reply, "Yes. I will never be as adapt as a Chuvash or even yourselves but I can speak."

Paradox seemed to consider this "Is the boy smart enough to learn as you have?"

Severus felt a rush of pride for Draco, who though not a son of his body was the son of his blood and his heart, "Yes, he is wise. If he studies he may learn as I have. Not many wizards can learn your tongue, most must be born knowing it."

"If he can learn, I may come to accept him as my master." Paradox hissed back.

Severus nodded, "Between Harry and myself I am sure he will learn."

Harry grinned, "I already promised to teach him." He blushed slightly, "he said something about using Parseltongue to flirt with and how Slytherin it would be."

Severus didn't recognize the word Harry used, "What?" he asked in English, "Draco said that Parseltongue would be what to with?"

Harry stammered, "To flirt with." He hadn't expected to say a word in Parseltongue that his mother's best friend didn't know after finding out by accident that Severus could speak it.

"So," Severus repeated the Parseltongue equivalent of 'Flirt', "means flirt?"

Harry thought about it, "I believe the proper translation would be 'to tease someone you're interested in mating.'" He chewed his lip, unable to meet anyone's eyes, including the now-scared apothecary. He couldn't help his Chuvash blood that allowed him to speak to snakes.

Draco was upset that Harry was upset, "What are you looking at?" he snapped, "Didn't you know that Merlin could speak Parseltongue?"

Mr. Jigger stammered, "No I didn't. It's just you know…"

Remus finished his sentence, trying to be kind, "Unnerving because He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named was known to speak it?"

Mr. Jigger nodded foolishly.

"I can see how that would make it…unnerving." Remus continued, "Harry can't help it, it's a mark of a great wizard. It certainly isn't his fault that quite a number of great wizards went bad is it?"

To minimize Harry's revealing of his ability to speak Parseltongue, they quickly left to return to Lucius' London townhouse.

XoooooX

Oliver had some money saved since he wasn't much of a partier and he still lived at home officially. He had enough to invite his family and Percy's to discuss the particulars of their 'homework' to mourn their son by allow himself and Percy to properly grieve. He hoped that his parents would be agreeable so that they would forgive his oversight in informing that not only about the death of their grandchild as well as that Percy and himself were once again a couple but he had been worried about Percy so it slipped his mind.

Percy had agreed that the meeting was important after he brought it up that morning.

They would arrive together and Oliver's parents would be arriving at eleven so they could tell them privately before the Weasleys arrived at noon.

Percy was nervous after they flooed into Diagon Alley, "Your parents aren't upset with me are they?"

Oliver shook his head; "I didn't explain why we broke up before because I didn't want to upset them with the story I was told. They would have been very upset, not that they still won't be but we both know they'll still be upset."

Percy gulped they would be upset, there was no way around that… "Will they blame me?"

Oliver looked fierce squeezing his hand, "They better not. It's not your fault."

When they reached Antonio's, Oliver announced they were part of the Wood-Weasley party and they had a private room reservation. The maitre'd escorted them to their room and Oliver ordered them both large house coffees to help settle Percy's nerves.

Percy didn't care that he worked for the Ministry and walked through Diagon Alley holding his boyfriend's hand. They hadn't slept together since before Ginny was rescued from the Chamber of Secrets but they were a couple again and that's what mattered. He was tempted to curl up on Oliver's lap but he decided it was best sit beside him and rest his head on the Quidditch star's shoulder.

Oliver wrapped his arm around Percy, "It'll be okay. We can get through this."

He'd barely finished his sentence when his parents walked in.

They both seemed quite surprised to see them together, even though they knew they were meeting Oliver.

"Oliver? What's going on?" his father all but snapped.

His mother was more excited, "Does this mean you and Percy are back together? I never understood how you could break up."

"Hello Lady Wood. Lord Wood."

"Oh please you're back with my son. You have to call me Maria."

Percy blushed, "Maria then."

Oliver's dad looked at him strangely, "I don't know whom you think you are traipsing back into my son's life. Do you know how bad,"

Oliver held up his hand, "Dad Percy never broke up with me.'

His parents were incredulous and looked at him as if he'd lost his mind.

"Oberon dear before you bite the poor boy's head off, you should notice he looks peeked." Maria Wood gently chastised her Bondmate.

"Please sit. We're expecting Percy's family but first we have to tell you some rather disturbing news."

Oberon barked, "Are you pregnant?" addressing his question at Percy.

Percy heard the word pregnant and couldn't breathe.

Oliver rubbed his back, "Relax. It's alright. I'll explain."

Maria was worried now, something wasn't right. She knew her son and there was a brooding cloud of sadness around him. "Ignore your father's rudeness and just begin your story."

"Well our story starts after they decided to close Hogwarts because it was too dangerous. Ginny was taken into the Chamber, Percy thought she was lost forever but she was rescued. A few days later he was called to the Headmaster's office."

Oliver's parents were a bit surprised.

Percy had managed to calm down and was tempted to pick up the tale but Oliver shook his head.

"The Headmaster offered him tea but it had Veritaserum in it. He asked Percy what his future plans were and mentioned us. He told the headmaster we were a couple and we were going to move in together. He said some nasty things, imperioed Percy and forced him to forget about me. He even told him he was going to begin Courting Penelope Clearwater."

Maria was horrified. "It can't be."

Percy said quietly, "I can give you the memory if you need to see it."

Oberon stared at Percy, "So you didn't break my son's heart?"

Percy shook his head, "Not for all the world. He's better then I deserve."

"It was what happened during the time the Headmaster mindraped Percy that we asked you to come. Mum, he was pregnant. The Headmaster didn't even ask him if he wanted the child or if he was going to be Bonded to the sire of his child."

"Was?" Oberon asked in a steel voice.

"He was under the Imperious Curse and couldn't make decisions. He didn't even know until recently because the memories were hidden by a powerful memory charm that was removed by a skilled Legimens. We've been trying to come to grips with the death…murder of our son." Oliver tried to calm his dad so Percy wouldn't be upset.

"Son? You know it was a boy?" Maria asked.

"Weasleys always have males and Woods usually have only male offspring. It has to have been a boy; our mind healer prescribed properly mourning our child by giving them a name and a tombstone. If you'll have him, we want to add Alvin Drystan Wood to the Wood family. Soon I plan to add Percival Brian Wood to the list of our kin. That is if you don't object Dad. His family has no objections and they're down right furious about what happened to Percy. He may have been young and hadn't known he was pregnant but he had been carrying Arthur's first Weasley grandson. Bill, Charlie, Fred and George were so upset, the twins I'm afraid have retribution in mind for the headmaster."

"So if Percy never broke up with you, why did you say he did?" Oberon glared.

Percy spoke up, "Because it was better then the story the Headmaster gave him. He let Oliver keep his memories but locked away mine. The Headmaster told Oliver that I came to him distraught because Oliver was pressuring me for sex. He implied to Ollie that he'd raped me."

Maria and Oberon were furious.

"My son is not a rapist!"

"Certainly not. He would never hurt you!"

Percy nodded. "Oliver told you we broke up because it was kinder then admitting the Headmaster accused him of rape, wiped my memories to help me recover from the trauma of supposedly forced intimacy and told him to never speak to me or else he'd turn him over to the Aurors."

Now Oberon was absolutely furious, "You're telling me that crackpot aborted your child without consent, forced you to forget my son, made you Court that loathsome know-it-all Clearwater bint and threatened to turn my Oliver in for rape if he even talked to you?"

Percy swallowed, "I'm sorry."

Maria hurried over to hug him, "You poor dear. If you want a stone with your son's name on it with his Wood ancestors I have no objection." Her expression was daring her Bondmate to raise an objection.

Oberon sighed, "Very well, order the stone. I just don't see the,"

"I have his brother's name engraved on the family mausoleum and you know it." Maria glared.

Percy was surprised.

"I didn't know that Mom." Oliver said surprised.

"I lost a baby a few months after we were Bonded. I know it's not the same but it hurt so much. I wanted my baby." Maria said her soft voice filled with old pain.

It wasn't the same thing but Percy could empathize with wanting your baby after losing it.

"Do you have any plans to try again soon?"

Oliver blushed, "Mum! We weren't even trying before. I knew it was possible, I guess we forgot the contraceptive charm."

"I want to be a grandmother. As your mother I insist you forget the charm."

The Weasleys trooped in.

Bill brushed past his dad and grandfather, kneeling and hugging his little brother. "I'm sorry you didn't believe you could depend on us. Rest assured no one is hurting you again. You don't learn to be a curse breaker without learning some very nasty curses. I may just put some of those rare exotic protective curses on my new favourite brother. Of course if I do they'll attach themselves to anyone who wants to hurt you." He reached over to punch Oliver in the shoulder playfully, "What's the big idea getting Percy knocked up anyway? Don't you know I'm supposed to have kids first?"

Fred laughed, "Bill since when were you a wand swallower?"

Bill bolted up, wrapped an arm around Fred's neck and dug his knuckles into his head, "I am no wand swallower. I'm a straight as they come. I just haven't found the right girl yet. What about you?"

"I like to keep my options open but that Angelina is a good sort of girl." Fred said fighting free.

George rolled his eyes, "That girl's got it so bad for you that she's blind that Lee Jordan practically worships the ground she walks on."

"Lee? Lee doesn't even play Quidditch." Fred retorted.

Percy laughed, "Quidditch isn't everything, after all not all Quidditch players are only interested in Quidditch players."

"Why are we here Oliver?" Charlie asked.

"Healer Tonks recommended that we," Oliver began.

Percy snorted, "He gave us homework. He thought we should name our baby and honour them with a funeral to help mourn them. Oliver wanted it to be a family event. Because we were all deprived the right to know our son."

Percy may not have been the sire but given the history of all male lines in the Wood and Weasley lines it could not have been anything else.

Arthur touched Percy's shoulder, "What is my first grandchild's name?"

Percy said quietly, "Alvin Drystan Wood. Alvin because the Wood family has Elven Heritage and honours that by giving names that have elf in their meaning. Drystan was an advisor to King Arthur and keeps in the Arthurian name giving of the Weasleys."

Bill added, "Drystan also means full of sorrow."

Percy winced.

"I think it's a wonderful name," Arthur hugged his son, "I just wish," his mind drifted before the sentence and the thought were complete.

"I can make arrangements for the stone." Septimus said.

"You can make the arrangements to add it to the plaque on the family mausoleum." Oberon groused.

"If that's all let's eat!" Fred smirked.

XoooooX

Annoyed her attempt to follow Dumbledore had been a waste Dora decided to go to Godric's Hollow. It was an old township named for Hogwarts' founder Godric Gryffindor who founded it as well according to legend. It had some Muggle inhabitants but it was primarily comprised of Wizarding folk. She chose the plain features of a young woman of indeterminable age with reddish hair and pale brown eyes again as her researcher's appearance.

Apparating into a Public Apparation Point, Dora gazed at the front doors, their snow-dusted roofs, and their front porches. Then the little lane along which she was walking curved to the left and the heart of the village, a small square, was revealed to her. There were several shops, a post office, a pub, and a little church whose stained-glass windows were glowing jewel-bright reflecting the cold winter sunlight across the square.

Halfway across the square, however, she stopped dead. As she had passed a war memorial, it had transformed. Instead of an obelisk covered in names, there was a statue of three people: a man with untidy hair and glasses, a woman with long hair and a kind, pretty face, and a baby boy sitting in his mother's arms. They had done a good job with the statue; Dora could see that little boy in Harry at fourteen.

Heading first into the Cemetery Dora began to examine the tombstones. Many of the Wizarding world's leading families who didn't have private mausoleums were buried here; or at least the ancestors of today’s Weasleys, Abbotts, Potters, Peverells and even Longbottoms. It took a while to find Dumbledores.

There was a joint lichen-spotted granite tombstone, bearing the names Percival Enoch Hayes Jarvis Dumbledore and Kendra Eliza Wulfret Dumbledore. Beside it were stones that bore the names and only birth dates of Albus Brian Wulfric Dumbledore and Aberforth Braden Wulfgang Dumbledore. On a third headstone carved in elegant script was the name Ariana Davina Camilla Dumbledore. There was also a quotation:

'Where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.'

Dora crouched to brush the dirt away and gasped. She was only thirteen when she died. How awful. Dora's eyes narrowed at the date, it was less then two months after her mother Kendra's.

Why had she never heard the name Ariana Dumbledore before?

She sensed someone and turned to see an old woman.

"Who might you be missy?"

Dora attempted a smile, "Ashley Davidson." Giving the name she'd chosen for her 'research'.

The woman seemed to roll the name on her tongue, "Davidson? Doesn't sound familiar."

"It shouldn't," Dora said pleasantly, pulling out a roll of parchment, a small pot of ink and a quill, "I'm doing research for a book." She continued as she began taking notes on birth dates, names and where applicable death dates.

"A book?" the woman asked suspiciously.

"Yes, you see I was hired to do research for an in -depth book on Albus Dumbledore for a very busy columnist." Very true if she secretly gave her research and interview notes to Rita Skeeter…

"Oh, my name is Cynthia MacMillan. Albus is my cousin, my mother and his father were siblings."

Dora raised an eyebrow, "Really? I'll have to pass your name on to my boss. I'm sure they'd love to interview you."

Cynthia rested her hand on her cousin's tombstone, "It was dreadful, Ariana's funeral. Aberforth was so angry; he actually punched Albus so hard he broke his nose. He told him that it was all his fault, that if he hadn't been so besotted with Gellert that Ariana would still be alive."

"Gellert?" Dora asked curious.

"Some connection of Bathilda Bagshot. I heard he'd been living with her before Ariana died. Gellert and Albus both had above average cleverness had met for the first time in their lives an intellectual equal. At the funeral, Albus who was normally rather levelheaded was practically catatonic while Aberforth was heartbroken. They'd lost a mother and a sister in the space of less then three months. Albus was still the head of the family but he seemed so lost, more so then most recent Hogwarts Graduates. Aberforth was about to start his Fifth Year in September and they'd lost their sister in July but it was Aberforth not Albus with Bathilda who helped arrange the internment of Ariana."

Cynthia grew quiet, "Having never been close, losing Ariana was the last straw. I was at Hogwarts with Aberforth and asking after Albus' health was a quick way to being cut out of his small group of acquaintances. Living in Albus' shadow and blaming Albus for their sister's death made him less social then ever. Ariana was such a sweet child, I was a year older but we were the best of friends. Ariana was quick as a whip; Aunt Kendra said Ariana and Albus stole all the smarts. I was sick with the flu, that day."

"What day?" Dora asked before she could stop herself.

Cynthia went on, not hearing her as she talked out loud, "Ariana was smart but feather-brained at time. Albus was always reading, giving little attention to his young siblings while Aberforth was always tending to his silly goats so neither had much time or attention for her. Uncle Percival was always away at the Wizengamot and Aunt Kendra was usually painting so no one would notice when Ariana slipped out of the house. That day Ariana was outside in a corner of the yard. We'd been told never to use magic outside because Muggles could see but Ariana must have let it slip her mind. I think she was making little paper birds fly and chasing them." Cynthia's expression was both pained and furious, "Four Muggle boys caught her at it, they probably made her show them how she did it. When they discovered they couldn't do it too, it must have frightened them. No one in the house heard but Uncle Percival came home to see poor Ariana attacked mercilessly with cricket bats for using magic. He scared the Muggle boys off and brought Ariana inside. Aunt Kendra had some Healing training and did her best to patch her up but she was never the same."

"How awful!" Dora exclaimed horrified.

"Ariana was never the same after that, locked in her own head she was." Cynthia said bitterly, "It was like I lost my dearest friend, she was only six! Muggle or no how could someone brutally beat a six-year-old girl! When Uncle Percival recovered from the shock he brutally attacked the four Muggle boys who'd nearly killed his baby. He'd killed three of them and the fourth was barely alive when the Aurors came. Uncle Percival never told them about Ariana and let them paint his character very black for an unprovoked attack on Muggles. Soon after that they moved away, Aunt Kendra wanted a new start."

Dora was shocked; Dumbledore's father murdered three boys? "So they moved here to Godric's Hollow?"

"And lived off Aunt Kendra's dowry and inheritance. Albus made a name for himself both in school and after Ariana's death. After the elimination of Grindelwald as a threat to both the Wizarding and Muggle population the Wizengamot returned Uncle Percival estate, title and Wizengamot seat." Cynthia glared, "All of which should have been given to Albus anyway."

"Do you know why he never Bonded?" Dora was curious and hoped this connection of Albus would know.

Cynthia MacMillan swallowed, "Ask Aberforth." She looked away, "Trust me, he hates Albus with a passion. I know he'll tell you all the truth you need. Be careful, I think he loved Ariana more then was healthy." She turned to leave after laying a bouquet on Ariana's grave.

"Is Ms. Bagshot still living?" Dora had to know.

"Yes," Cynthia stammered off an address, "Next door to the house Aunt Kendra and Ariana died in. I don't understand why he let the Potters hide there."

Dora's eyes widened, "It was the last place anyone would look."

But Cynthia MacMillan was already gone.

Dora made her way back toward the dark church and the out-of-sight kissing gate. She was now planning on heading towards the Potter memorial at the ruins of the house that James and Lily Potter died in.

She headed down the street leading out of the village in the opposite direction from which she had entered weaving through the citizens of the town. Dora could just make out the point where the cottages ended and the lane turned into open country again. She walked as quickly as she dared, keen on attracting as little attention as possibly.

She spotted a dark mass that stood at the very end of this row of houses.

Then Dora could see it; the Fidelius Charm must have died with James and Lily. She berated herself, of course it had. The hedge had grown wild in the sixteen years since Harry had been taken from the rubble that lay scattered amongst the waist-high grass. Most of the cottage was still standing, though entirely covered in the dark ivy and snow, but the right side of the top floor had been blown apart; that, Dora was sure, was where the curse had backfired. Hadn't she always heard that Lily and Harry had been attacked in the nursery? Dora stood at the gate, gazing up at the wreck of what must once have been a cottage just like those that flanked it.

The house had been damaged but no one had rebuilt it…

She grasped the thickly rusted gate, not wishing to open it, but simply so she'd touched some part of the house.

Her touch on the gate seemed to have done it, A sign had risen out of the ground in front of them, up thorough the tangles of nettles and weeds, like some bizarre, fast-growing flower, and in golden letters upon the wood it said:

On this spot, on this night of 31 October 1981, Lily and James Potter lost their lives. Their son, Harry, remains the only wizard ever to have survived the Killing Curse. This house, invisible to Muggles, has been left preserved in its ruined state as a monument to the Potters and as a reminder of the violence that tore apart their family.

And all around these neatly lettered words; other witches and wizards who had come to see the place where the Boy Who Lived had escaped had added scribbles. Some had merely signed their names in Everlasting Ink; others had carved their initials into the wood, still others had left messages. The most recent of these, shining brightly over sixteen years' worth of magical graffiti, all said similar things.

Good luck, Harry, wherever you are.

If you read this, Harry, we're all behind you!

Long live Harry Potter.

Dora's voice caught, such kind words. It was so sad that Harry had never seen this, he should. She'd mention it to Remus next time she saw him.

A heavily muffled figure was hobbling up the lane toward them, bundled up against the brisk dreary late November day. Dora thought, that the figure was a woman. She was moving slowly, possibly frightened of slipping on the snowy ground. Her stoop, her stoutness, her shuffling gait all gave an impression of extreme age. She watched in silence as she drew nearer. Dora was waiting to see whether she would turn into any of the cottages she was passing, but she knew instinctively that she would not. At last she came to a halt a few yards from them and simply stood there in the middle of the frozen road, facing her.

There was next to no chance that this woman was a Muggle: She was standing there gazing at a house that ought to have been completely invisible to her, if she was not a witch.

Dora thought the woman looked familiar, she resembled somewhat the picture of the author of A History of Magic. She asked softly, "Ms. Bagshot?"

The muffled figure nodded, "You are?" her voice high and thick with age.

"Ashley Davidson. I'm researching for a book on Albus Dumbledore and I heard this was once his home."

"Many years ago it was but it's known such tragedy. Join me for tea dear? It's too cold to have a conversation like this out of doors."

Dora nodded, wondering why this woman would come out here in the cold. Surely she could order everything by owl…

She stepped toward the woman and at once, Ms. Bagshot turned and hobbled off back the way she had come. Leading her past several houses, Ms. Bagshot turned in at a gate.

Dora followed her up the front path through a garden nearly as overgrown as the one they had just left.

She fumbled for a moment with a key at the front door, then opened it and stepped back to let her pass.

Now that she was beside her, Dora realized how tiny she was; bowed down with age, she came barely level with her chest. She closed the door behind them; her knuckles blue from the cold and mottled against the peeling paint then turned and peered into Dora's face. Her eyes were thick with cataracts and sunken into folds of transparent skin, and her whole face was dotted with broken veins and liver spots.

Dora wondered whether she could make her out at all; even if she could, what she might see in the plain features of a young woman of indeterminable age with reddish hair and pale brown eyes she wore as Ashley Davidson.

The odour of old age, dust, of unwashed clothes and stale food intensified as the unwound a moth-eaten black shawl, revealing a head of scant white hair through which the scalp showed clearly.

Dora wondered how long it had been since someone had looked in on the ancient old witch. She'd ask her mother to add Bathilda to the list of elderly wizards and witches that some of Andromeda's old colleagues would visit.

Bathilda used her wand, her voice and hand quivering as she lit candles but it was still very dark, not to mention extremely dirty. Thick dust crunched beneath their feet, and whatever else.

Dora stood watching Bathilda as she finished lighting the candle stubs that stood on saucers around the room, perched precariously on stacks of books and on side tables crammed with cracked and mouldy cups.

The last surface on which Dora watched a candle flicker to light was a bow-fronted chest of drawers on which there stood a large number of photographs. When the flame danced into life, its reflection wavered on their dusty glass and silver. She saw a few tiny movements from the pictures.

Bathilda was distracted as she fumbled with logs for the fire.

Dora who was admittedly pants at household magic, muttered "Tergeo." The dust vanished from the photographs. Then the sight of a photograph near the back of the collection caught his eye, and she snatched it up.

It was of a light haired, merry-faced young man who was smiling lazily up at Dora out of the silver frame.

Then besides it in a similar silver frame, he seemed to share an embrace with a clearly teenage Albus Dumbledore. It was the expression on Dumbledore's face that gave her pause, Cynthia MacMillan's words; 'so besotted with that Gellert' rang in her ears. Albus was shorter and he was looking up at the younger but taller young man. The look on his face was one of wonder and worship, his slim lithe body pressed tight at the taller boy's side. The taller boy's hair seemed lighter, perhaps blond but it was hard to tell with a black and white photograph. The look he had looking at Albus was one of smug pride and ownership but his feelings were less refined and courtly. Excited, she asked, "Ms. Bagshot, is this Gellert and Albus?"

The old woman nodded, "My great nephew, he'd gotten into a spot of trouble and his parents asked me to let him stay for the summer. They warned me he'd been in trouble but he was always so nice. He did the dishes and the dusting; I was always in and out of the house on Ministry business. Poor Albus had lost his mother just the day before he was just supposed to go on a trip with his good friend Elphias Doge. They called it a 'Grand Tour'; they were quite popular in those days for young men just out of school. So a very unhappy Albus was stuck in Godric's Hollow for the summer. He hadn't figured out what to do with poor Ariana, Aberforth was just as determined not to return to Hogwarts as Albus was determined that he should not fail his mother's wishes and complete his education."

Poor Ms. Bagshot started to cough.

"Rest awhile, let me see if I can clear the air a little." Dora summoned carefully all the dirty dishes, "Where might I find that tea you mentioned?"

"The kitchen two doors down the hallway, it's in the cupboard above the stove."

Dora could hardly breathe without feeling ill; the smell of mould, rotten food and all around filth assaulted her. She temporarily cursed away her sense of smell; Helga Hufflepuff was keen at cooking and cleaning charms. Household charms were not something Dora was all that proficient at but she did her best. Granted she wasn't her mother and the dishes didn't particularly sparkle but they and the kitchen were cleaner, much cleaner then when she started. She filled a teapot with water and used a heating charm after Apparating home for a minute to raid her mother's kitchen for tea and biscuits. Dora didn't trust anything in this place to be safely edible given the state of things.

Bathilda was dozing off in the room Dora had left her in; she shook the elderly woman and then silently charmed her hand clean. As she gingerly sat in a chair after clearing it out with her wand and using a charm to clean it first. Pouring a cup of tea and placing a few biscuits on a second plate. "Here. I got some biscuits from my mother. She makes the best I've ever had."

"Why thank you dear." Bathilda murmured.

"You simply must tell me about your nephew Gellert and Albus. They look so happy, I don't think I've ever seen Dumbledore glow like that."

"They thought I didn't know but it was so romantic, I was so busy running interference between the Ministry and the goblins as usual. I knew that Gellert was only sixteen and Albus eighteen but they were both so smart I thought they'd get along. You could have knocked me over with a quill you see, Albus nearly stumbled when he saw my Gellert. They were nigh inseparable. It was really sad that Aberforth took his brother's relationship so badly. He was jealous that Albus had love; he was always trying to start fights and get Gellert thrown out. Albus was so besotted with my nephew I was sure they'd be engaged before the end of summer." Bathilda's voice shook with age and sorrow.

"Then Ariana died. Did you know about her?" Dora had to know.

"Yes. I knew she was old enough to go to Hogwarts but hadn't the magical control to go. Most days she seemed happy and quiet, content to stare out the window. She was stubborn; anger seemed to destroy what little control she had over her magic. Her mother's death was an accident, I'm sure of it. Kendra must have wanted Ariana to do something Ariana didn't want to.

"So Albus' relationship with his brother is coloured by jealous that he loved and lost, as well as anger that Ariana died? Their cousin told me that Aberforth blamed Albus for their sister's death, he even punched him at the internment." Dora asked conspiratorially.

"Oh dear that was dreadful, Aberforth ran down to my place, screaming he needed help. He brought me back; there was evidence of a three-way duel. Ariana was dead no doubt about it. Albus was so in shock that he wrapped his arms around himself rocking, he didn't speak for days. He just let his brother berate him, love is a beautiful thing." Bathilda croaked.

"Yes it is."

"They told me Gellert became a powerful Dark Wizard, I wonder if that was because he lost Albus. If they'd stayed together it might not have happened, they were always talking about doing Good. I think the reason Albus never was bonded is because he still loves Gellert. It hurt him terribly when the Wizengamot insisted he deal with him. He mentioned they had history but I never heard a whisper that he admitted they were romantically involved."

"Wouldn't Aberforth have mentioned it? Especially is he believed Albus was responsible for Ariana's death."

"Aberforth had been arrested and imprisoned much to Albus' mortification for using illegal charms on goats. He didn't have access to news at that time, regulations you know."

For as old as she was Bathilda had a great memory, it was surprising. Her house was a mess, her hygiene was embarrassing but she had a healthy memory regarding the past but like a good investigator Dora would be sure to double-check her sources.

Tea and biscuits gone, Dora rose, "I must go write my report Ms. Bagshot. I'm sure my boss will be very excited to interview you."

"Really?" the old woman seemed genuinely pleased. "Who?"

"I'm not at liberty to say ma'am. I can promise that you won't be disappointed."

Dora left the dirty cottage Apparating home and taking a long hot shower to wash the grime away.

So Dumbledore lost his mother and had to change his plans to go abroad. He was stuck in guardianship for a brother who detested him and an unstable sister who was responsible for the death of their mother. He met a gorgeous younger blond wizard who'd been in trouble. They obviously quickly became attached; the picture of them was evidence of that. That picture would make Skeeter's career; the Wizarding World's hero, the Muggleborns' champion, was the lover of the Dark Lord Grindelwald. Had they kept up a correspondence? Had they remained lovers? What exactly happened that day, the day Ariana died and the day Dumbledore 'duelled' Grindelwald? Could Albus still be in love with the teen that might have caused his sister's death?

That would be interesting, unless Dumbledore killed Ariana to be free of her so he could be free to live his own life. A fifteen-year-old wizard doesn't need much supervision and Albus could have emancipated him if he wanted away from him enough.

Merlin, she hoped Dumbledore didn't kill his sister. Unless Aberforth did and blamed Albus to avoid dealing with the guilt because as Cynthia said, 'he loved her more then was healthy.' Hufflepuff preserve her sanity! The Dumbledores were mad, Percival killed Muggles, Albus Dumbledore was intimately involved with a Dark Lord, Ariana killed her mother and Aberforth might have been in love with his sister. There was a possibility that a Dumbledore killed their sister. As if finding out Dumbledore murdered at least two innocent babies wasn't bad enough, apparently the apple didn't fall far from the tree.

 

 

Chapter Text

Chapter 19

 

Dobby had been politely asked by Remus to take the job as Harry's private elf.

Dobby had been understandably nervous when summoned to a Malfoy house having not even been freed for a year. He had a contract at Hogwarts that was intended to be a trial for six months but a bit of prodding had convinced him to end it on its third month.

Dobby had happily taken Harry's trunk back to Hogwarts as soon as Harry dressed for the day. He had neatly folded the clothes Draco had given Harry taking pride that it was neat, orderly and organized.

Dobby had always been a conscientious elf but to be Harry Potter's personal elf…was beyond his wildest dreams.

 

XoooooX

Draco woke Harry reluctantly and gently bullied him into the shower.

Harry missed a few people at Hogwarts but he was scared that his friendship with Draco would disappear like dew in the sun. He wanted to stay…

Draco lifted his friend's chin, "You're my mate, don't forget that. I couldn't ignore you if I wanted to, which I don't. Our creatures wouldn't allow that. Besides, I'll have to control myself. Seeing you flaunt your body in my clothes will do wonders for my libido. You are gorgeous." Draco said kissing Harry's neck.

It took all of Harry's will power not to swoon, he was no girl but Draco Malfoy was the hottest and richest heir in Hogwarts. He maybe two years away from his inheritance but he was already falling for his Slytherin counterpart.

Draco held him close, a secret part of him afraid that he would lose Harry now that they were returning to school.

Harry heard two laughing hisses.

"The Chuvash is being courted by the Veela."

"You can see how desperately the Chuvash loves him. Can you taste/smell the pheromones they are giving off?"

Harry blushed, hiding his face in Draco's shirt, hissing under his breath, "Shut up..."

Reluctantly, both snakes and boys headed down to breakfast.

"So," Remus began as the boys came in, "we are all still going to Hogwarts?"

Lucius nodded, "Not sure I'm okay with you joining us in bed yet but you are welcome in our rooms."

Remus was grateful for that at least; if a Veela was able to share their destined mate it said a lot about them. It was almost impossible for two wolves to share a single mate without practically killing each other. "I should have realized sooner that if Severus cared about you so much you must have some decent qualities."

Draco snorted, "The public persona he used to emulate would have made that difficult."

Harry giggled, "Yours wasn't much better. You called Hermione that word…and you were never nice to Ron." Not that they were being so nice themselves…

Severus glared, "I may not like Miss Granger but if you called her,"

Draco winced, "I did, I knew better and I still did, much to my current embarrassment. I won't be using it again." No matter how bad Granger reacted to his and Harry's friendship he would not stoop to that level again and break his promise.

"I'll hold you to that." Severus said sharply.

Draco winced, when papa used that tone he knew he was in trouble.

They ate slowly, neither really keen on returning.

When they were done, Lucius pulled out a portkey and held it out.

It was a tiny pewter cauldron.

Everyone grabbed on.

Harry groaned, "I hate portkeys."

There was the hook in navel sensation before they were dragged from Malfoy Manor in Wiltshire to Hogwarts in Scotland.

They arrived on Saturday just as breakfast was over for most people who were sticking around and chatting.

Lucius had chosen the time to make Harry's return as memorable as possible.

Draco caught Harry who was immediately dizzy and nearly fell when they landed. He pulled Harry to his chest.

Harry took a few deep breaths and let Draco hold him, ignoring the stares and shocked whispers of the Hogwarts residents.

"Is that?"

"Harry?"

"He's back!"

Fred and George leapt off the bench at Gryffindor table to hurry to hug him.

Harry glanced up to see the twins, vaguely noticing Hermione's displeasure at Draco who was holding him and the look of pure hatred that Ron shot them both. Harry did his best to ignore them and wiggled a bit to let Draco know he had to let go.

Draco let go; their snakes though invisible wouldn't like being jostled so much.

The twins hugged Harry and ruffled his hair, "Merlin it's good to see you. We were worried."

Harry reached back for Draco's hand, "I'm okay now. I wasn't very well. I don't know what would have happened if Draco and Sev…I mean Professor Prince-Malfoy hadn't noticed I was ill."

George looked at Fred and nodded, they both noticed the slip and that Harry was leaning against Draco in an intimate way. It reminded them of Percy; their older brother who they hadn't been very kind to in the past who had suffered a gross violation and terrific loss. Without Oliver, their good friend they doubted Percy would ever recover. Something that had scarred Harry but brought them both together…just how bad had life at the Dursleys been for Harry? They had every intention of finding out.

"It's good to have you back." Fred grinned.

"You coming back to the tower?" George was sure that Harry relied on Draco a lot, he wasn't sure if Harry could bear to be separated from him.

Harry swallowed, "I'm not sure how welcome I will be in the Fourth Year Dormitory. If I'm not welcome I'm sure I can ask Professor Prince-Malfoy if I can sleep on a couch in his apartment."

"No." Draco said flatly but lacing his fingers in Harry's, "If you aren't welcome in the Tower you'll stay in the Dungeon with us. I'm Prince of Slytherin. If I say you're welcome Blaise, Theo, Greg and Vince have no choice but to agree."

"Or he could stay with us." Fred offered, "I know George would be okay with it and I can't see Lee Jordan having a problem."

Harry smiled, "I'll think about it."

"So the prodigal returns." Came the flat unfeeling voice of Harry's former friend Hermione Granger. "Are you going to admit that you tampered with the cup?"

Harry shook his head, "No, because I didn't do that. I satisfied the Wizengamot's Judicial Council, you know I'm not a strong enough wizard to fool them."

"You're a good liar Harry, you can fool anyone."

Harry struggled to hold back his tears, "I did not go anywhere near that stupid goblet. I'm already stuck being the Bloody Boy Who Lived. I never asked to have my parents MURDERED by some homicidal insane manic. I want my Mum and Dad! Why did some pathetic excuse for a seer have to prophesy that I would be the one to defeat the Dark Lord?" He glared at Dumbledore, "You're the only one he ever feared. You should have stopped him. You shouldn't have allowed him to get so powerful. You should have taken responsibility not handing it off to a baby who didn't even know he was a Wizard until he was eleven. If you wanted me to be some great warrior then why have me raised by Muggles who hate Magic? It sort of defeats the purpose of my being magically strong enough to defeat someone you know wasn't dead."

"Now Harry," Dumbledore said in a sickly sweet placating tone, "No need to raise such a fuss. We both know how much you crave attention but frightening your schoolmates is going too far."

"You're just afraid that your guests will find out Britain isn't as safe as they were told! Did you tell them about Professor Quirrell? Of course not. The opening of the Chamber of Secrets? No. That an escaped Prisoner broke into the castle? You wouldn't offer such incendiary information on the cusp of such a coup as to have the Triwizard Tournament re-established during your reign as the Headmaster of Hogwarts." Harry said bitterly.

"Harry." Dumbledore's voice took on a faintly dangerous edge.

"I didn't enter that Tournament. I want nothing to do with it. I don't even want to be here. Why would I want to be around people who should know me better yet believe I'm a liar and a cheat? I stand with the only people I trust in Hogwarts: Severus, Lucius, Remus and Draco. As for the twins they are the only Hogwarts Weasleys I will accept as friends. Ron was my best friend; he should have known me better. I told him from the first day of term I didn't want to enter, I would not enter and he turned his back on me. So in front of Hogwarts I turn my back on him. As for Hermione I don't need her help with studying, if she insists on believing I didn't listen to her about the tournament being dangerous then the Golden Trio is Broken."

There was a collective gasp in the Great Hall amid staff and student alike.

"I will be happy to leave the Tower if my presence is an embarrassment. I have little desire to live there at present." Harry said quietly.

"Yes, by all means go live with the snakes. You obviously prefer their company. You are just as plotting and conniving as a stinking Slytherin." Ron snarled.

Harry paled, "I never told you that I was almost placed there. Right now I wish I had been. Then I wouldn't know the pain of being betrayed by someone I trusted. I wouldn't have gone into the Chamber of Secrets for just anyone's sister. I don't wish I hadn't saved her but I wish she'd been someone else's sister right now."

Ron punched Harry.

Only Draco's balance kept him from falling.

"Detention Mr. Weasley. I shall be writing to your parents. I am sure your father will be displeased with you." Severus said annoyed.

Shishreyu's angry hiss echoed through out the Great Hall, "How dare you strike my master." She had been invisible until that moment, her ire causing her to reveal herself.

Girls from Ravenclaw, Gryffindor and Hufflepuff gasped in shock at a snake curled up on Harry Potter's shoulders.

Hermione looked faint.

Slytherins were surprised, not only by the snake on Harry Potter's shoulders but by his announcement that he might have been one of them.

The other boys were stunned.

"Harry I think leaving the Great Hall would be a good idea."

"Severus," Dumbledore said grimly, "After all I've done for you I can't understand how you could turn your back on me."

"The moment I realized you'd turned your back on Lily's son my allegiance to you was done." Severus said sharply. "I owe you no more duty then to continue in my position as Hogwarts' Potion Master and Head of Slytherin. My loyalty is to my Bondmate, our son and Harry."

"I thought you quite disliked Remus." Dumbledore continued. "You were the reason why he was let go last year."

"Let's just say I decided to grow up. I can't hold the mistakes of his childish friends against him. With Sirius Black the III still on the loose and Petunia Dursley's care quite insufficient, he was in need of a new guardian and I felt he was a good choice. It gave me a chance to redeem myself for my mistakes last year. We have become quite good friends like you hoped. We are now on the same side, Harry's side."

Dumbledore was fighting to control his composure, quite embarrassed that they had guests. "Perhaps we should continue this discuss in my office."

Harry shook his head; "I won't set foot in there. I don't trust you at all."

"My dear boy, I am the Headmaster and it doesn't do to speak to me this way. I believe the company of such persons has taught you dreadful manners." Dumbledore said shaking his head as if saddened. "I fear your parents would be aghast at your manners. I looked on them like children."

"Don't you dare speak of Lily to him." Severus said dangerously, his voice thick with anger. "Your own children? You sacrificed them all for your beloved Greater Good. You had the chance to save them, I begged you to do it. Foolishly confident that you would I sold my honour to a second master, now that I am older I see that you never would have. Come Harry, I believe this interview has tired you."

Draco examined Harry's cheek and found only a slight bruise, "Do you have a bruise salve? If I were older I would just heal him myself." Until he came into his inheritance he wouldn't have access to his natural healing abilities.

Severus shook his head, "I know some healing spells." He didn’t have any bruise salve orders and sadly he didn’t have any on hand.

Draco gestured from Blaise, Theo, Greg and Vince to join him.

They exited the Great Hall together.

Fred and George nervously following the Slytherins, their adopted brother and former professor of the Dark Arts.

Blaise crossed his arms, aft they all entered their Head of House's apartments, "So is it true? Did prissy Potter not cheat?"

Draco winced and then scowled, "Of course he didn't. I would know if he did. He was terrified when his name came out of the Cup. Not the terror of being caught cheating but the terror of being beaten. My original assessment of his character has been found wanting. He is an honorary snake and you are to treat him as my betrothed."

"What about Pansy?" Vince asked nervously.

"I have never liked her, not even her attentions. I allowed them to appease my mother. Who I have little attachment to, rather I look up to the Head of Slytherin with the respect one owes one's bearer though he did not bear me. I wish to Salazar that he had." Draco replied, "If you want her, I have no objections." He'd been suspicious that Vince had an attraction for the pug-nosed girl who fancied herself the most attractive girl in their year much less Slytherin. He saw no such thing, only courtesy kept him from speaking such things aloud. He pulled a bag out of his robes, "The debt I owe the House for betting ill. I believe I also owe you a few chess matches Blaise." In his eagerness to take on the role of Prince of Slytherin he had often neglected Blaise who had been like a brother to him.

"I thought you might be back. I can retrieve my chess set unless the Professor has one." Blaise said a bit surprised that Draco was so prompt to address his debts.

"I fear I have treated you ill, I owed you more then the occasional chess match when I was bored." Draco said appearing appropriately and honestly apologetic. "I have been treating my bestest friend like he was a member of Hufflepuff rather then a brother in Slytherin House."

Blaise stared at him, what had happened to Draco while he was gone? Draco hadn't called him his bestest friend since they were eight.

Severus laughed to himself as he glanced at the boys, "I would say you could stay here but I fear there is little room. If the Weasley twins wish to keep an eye on Harry I see no reason they can't go to Slytherin Dungeons. If there isn't room in the common room I am sure that he would be welcome in the Fourth Year Boys dormitory."

Remus choked on a chuckle listening to Draco's rather grand way of apologizing. He had more polish then Sirius' crudeness though born to the same station; the firstborn of the Head of a Pureblood family…

 

XoooooX

Draco led Harry, Fred and George into the 'Snake Pit' as Fred jokingly called it with his fellow Snake dormmates flanking them.

The dungeon was already murmuring about Harry Potter, Gryffindor's Golden Boy's denouncement of the Headmaster as well as the disillusion of the 'Golden Trio'. The Prince of Slytherin's new friendship with Harry Potter was of much debate…

"Silence." Blaise announced, "The Prince would like to speak."

Draco glared at each snake present in turn, "These three are too be treated as my guests until I say otherwise. Harry Potter is the acknowledged consort to the Prince of Slytherin. You are to regard the Gryffindor Beaters as his guards, we've all seen them in action on the Pitch and I'm sure you wouldn't want to end up their enemy. I am elevating Blaise Zabini as my second. Greg and Vince will remain my bodyguards. I expect you to treat them as they deserve. Harry Potter is the Heir to the Houses of Potter and Black. The Weasley twins are grandsons to Lord Weasley. I declare they are not to be treated as bloodtraitors. However, their brother is not afforded the same status. He is a traitor in his own right and has impugned the honour of my consort. I declare both Granger and Ronald Weasley enemies of Slytherin House. As long as no permanent harm is done I will turn a blind eye to any punishment a Snake doles out on the auspices that it must done without being caught by any staff. I forbid any Snake from visiting the Headmaster, any conference with him is an affront to the Honour and Glory of Salazar Slytherin. Trust me; both our Head of House and myself will take great pleasure in disciplining you. A report will also be sent to your parents who I know have no love for Dumbledore. Ah Mafalda dear,"

The daughter of a Squib cousin of Molly Weasley nee Prewett looked up, in awe at being addressed much less that the Prince knew her name. "Yes, your princeship?" she stammered.

"Let me introduce you to cousins who wouldn't be ashamed of you." He pointed to the twins, "I fear there have been some terrible manners on behalf of their mother, your cousin. You are descended from a Proud Ancient line, the Prewetts. She is a half-Blood and will be treated as such. I have just named two of perhaps the most devious boys outside of Slytherin as her cousins. Bully her and face their wrath. Now Mafalda dear, on the other hand is your traitor cousin Ronald. I am sure that you have a few scores to settle with him and perhaps, your cousins would like to discuss how to properly punish him for not understanding how important family is."

Mafalda blushed, to be singled out for attention by the Prince of Slytherin and deemed Acceptable to the House was a boon she would not soon forget. She stumbled to make a curtsy.

Fred walked over to her, "Mafalda? I'm Fred."

"I'm George. Nice to meet you."

"If we realized we were related then we would have treated you better." They had failed to recognize her at all; she must be the daughter of that accountant that they didn’t speak of.

"Hope you see past our short comings."

"When you are done catching up with her, someone direct them to my dorm. I will be very displeased if I discover they have been slighted. Remember, our Head of House is my papa and my dad is on the Board of Governors. They would be dissatisfied if they found out that you have violated the decrees of the Prince of Slytherin."

Harry struggled to keep from laughing; Draco could be so pompous at times. But he could see that this time it had merit. Mafalda Prewett, someone he never heard of before but Draco deemed a Halfblood must have been very unhappy. She had been hiding in a dark corner as far from the fires as possible. He after all claimed that three Lions had the right to be in the Slytherin Dungeons.

"Chess match then?" Blaise stammered a bit awed by Draco's blatant display of his authority. Draco outranked the House Quidditch Captain and all the Slytherin Prefects in the Snake Hierarchy after all. He was now the acknowledged second? He outranked them too? Slytherin's wand how was he supposed to concentrate on a chess match now?

Draco sat in a comfortable armchair, pulling Harry into his lap and summoning a Malfoy elf for snacks.

Blaise pointed to the fireplace and nodded at Theo.

Theo cast a fire in the fireplace and curled up with his book on raising Abraxans on his bed.

Blaise dug out his beloved chess set, a set of silver with emerald eyes on one side and gold with rubies on the other. He took a seat opposite Draco. "So…sliver or gold?"

Draco breathed in Harry's scent; he loved seeing his future mate in his clothes. He covered Harry's hands with his own. "Gold, which means you begin."

Blaise blinked, "Oh. If that's what you wish,"

"It is my desire that you begin."

Harry felt warm and content in Draco's arms despite having the rest of the Fourth Year Slytherin boys present.

Draco did want to give Blaise a good match, but having Harry curled up in his lap was more than a little distracting.

Blaise raised an eyebrow, "Poor move Drake."

Harry glanced up at the nickname.

Draco chuckled, "You try focusing with a bundle of cute boy in your lap."

Blaise blushed, muttering under his breath in Parseltongue, "I'd rather be the cute boy in someone's lap."

Paradox, Shishreyu and Harry stared, hissing together, "You speak it?"

Blaise swallowed, hissing back, "You understood that?"

Harry and the snakes looked at one another and giggled, "Yes."

Draco hadn't caught the hiss from his old friend and was surprised to hear a chorus of hissing. "What's going on?"

Harry glanced at Blaise, "Can I tell him?"

Blaise swallowed, "I didn't mean I'd want to switch places with you. I'm attracted to guys, he's gorgeous but he's not for me."

Harry giggled in Parseltongue, "He is very beautiful. I can't blame you for thinking so."

"Will you stop hissing enough to talk to me?" Draco was starting to be annoyed.

Harry kissed his cheek whispering, "Blaise speaks Parseltongue. We were surprised."

Draco blinked, "Oh, I see."

Harry asked in Parseltongue, "So do you have Chuvash blood too?"

Blaise was surprised, "Yes. Both my parents were Chuvash. Are you?"

Harry nodded, "I'm distantly related to the King of the Chuvash. He claims me a great-great-great something nephew."

"King of the Chuvash?" Blaise hissed in surprise, "You've met him?"

"I met the Veela Queen and her seer while I was away from school as well." He remembered her admonition not to mention her and went silent.

"The Veela Queen? She doesn't meet non-Veela…or so I've heard." Blaise hissed back.

"Apparently her seer had a vision I would be in danger and that I was Chuvash."

"Blaise? Match?"

Blaise glanced at his old friend, "Sorry, just getting to know your consort."

"No stealing him away now." Draco said holding Harry closer.

Harry laughed, "I'd have more to fear of him stealing you from me then him steal me from you but neither of us are his type."

Blaise glared at Harry playfully.

Vince looked vaguely ill; "I share a room with two guys interested in guys?"

"Shut up Vince!" Blaise thundered, "You're not our type. We have no interest in overindulgent indolents like you. We like good-looking rich, well-born guys who actually have talent at Quidditch not just beating others up. We like brilliant individuals."

The Weasley twins chose to walk in at that moment.

Blaise glanced up, "If I had to claim a type I'd probably choose…" he glanced at both twins, "whichever one is George. Fred is too interested in girls for me."

George blushed, "Me?"

Blaise shrugged, "Vince was feeling insecure because there were three guys in here who were interested in boys rather than girls. You'd think he'd be thrilled because that means all the more girls for him. At least Greg figured that out, with Draco not interested in courting Pansy she's all his if she'll have him."

"At least Theo isn't interested in boys." Vince muttered.

Theo turned red.

Blaise did his best not to react, he was sure Theo had a crush on him and there was nothing he could do about it. "Who knows? Maybe he just isn't attracted to anyone yet. Hard to know until you get your first crush or you start noticing what you're attracted to."

"So you're not attracted to any Snakes?" Theo asked quietly.

Blaise shook his head, "No, I'm sorry but I'm not."

Well there went Draco’s assumption that Blaise had a crush on him, perhaps he had a bigger ego then he thought…

"That's too bad. There are going to be a lot of broken hearts in Slytherin come Yule Ball." Theo said sadly.

"Speaking of Yule Ball, any chance I can convince you to come with me George?" Blaise could tell a difference in their scents; George smelled like earth and the greenhouses while Fred smelled like a potions ingredient cupboard.

George swallowed, "We'll see. You're not exactly my type Blaise."

"I can fly."

George stammered, "Flying isn't a necessity."

"Well we can always go as friends." Blaise teased.

"Who will you go with Fred?" Draco asked.

"Angelina." Fred smirked. "Don't need to ask who Harry is going with."

"Believe me, he's going with me. Neither of us have anyone else we would agree to attend with."

Harry blushed; Draco was telling them they were going to the ball together? Draco hadn't even asked…oh well, he would have agreed anyway.

Vince muttered, "I want to go with Pansy."

"I think that's a wonderful idea. Then she'll know her date well." Draco agreed.

Vince glared at Theo, "Whom are you going with?"

Theo swallowed, "No one. Father wants me to ask Millicent but she scares me."

"Mafalda doesn't have any who wants to go with her." Fred grinned, "Why don't you invite her? She is a rather decent sort. I think she'd be flattered. For being Ginny's age they are nothing alike; Ginny is quiet and shy for different reasons. Mal is quick-witted, devious and bloody brilliant. She had some neat ideas to prank Hermione; we're going to meet up another time to iron out the details. We've got some Polyjuice potion and getting some of Ginny's hair is easy. We can send Mal in and she can do some reconnaissance."

"Mal?" Draco asked curious.

"Mafalda is a strange name; we kept tripping over it so she's Mal." Fred grinned. "Wish we had her for a sister rather than Ginny but at least we get her for a cousin.

"Hmm." Draco nodded, "Glad to see you getting along. Lesson number one to understanding Slytherins, Family is the most important. Lesson two: Connections are everything. Lesson three: Favours create debt. Debt creates alliances."

Blaise nodded, eliminated another one of Draco's pieces, "Something we all learn in place of mother's milk I suppose."

"Arrogance is bred into you snakes as well." Fred snickered.

"It's not arrogance if you are born a higher class then most people." Draco said boredly. "Had you grown up at Weasley Hall rather than your shack then you would be treated differently. Your father had a higher standing when he was a student, as I understand. So did your mother. Your father was the first born of a Wizengamot Lord and your mother was an heiress."

"True." George acknowledged that compared to their grandfather's home The Burrow was a shack. It was rather crowded and oddly built…Ron would have wanted to punch Draco's face in for calling their home a shack. Most of his brothers would agree and moved out immediately after obtaining employment.

"Friends?" Draco asked a bit surprised that George wasn't upset and the insult of his house.

George glanced at Blaise and then at Harry, "I suppose. Just don't talk about The Burrow where Ron and Ginny can hear."

Fred shrugged, "Don't much care if he does. They are a useless lot. Ron wouldn't amount to anything. Mum would have to pay to get him a job. We're starting our own business and we wouldn't hire the useless lout."

"Can't promise I'd remember to hold my tongue. Insulting that Weasley is too easy and fun." Draco's quicksilver eyes shone with barely controlled fury, "I have a score to settle with him. Verbally and physically assaulting a professed friend is unforgivable. I might suspect a snake of an activity such as an outsider would call cheating. In Slytherin we call it creative problem solving and changing the rules. To use that word is an embarrassment; anyone who knows Harry knows that he might have to power to confound an Ancient Artefact but not the knowledge. I might have considered you capable of doing that but it would be too blatant, you would rather try something simple like an aging potion."

Fred shrugged, "If we'd considered it a possibility and though we could do it without setting off alarms we might have tried it. An aging potion was so simple we thought it might have been overlooked."

"Yeah, imagine our annoyance when that old goat actually considered it." George grumbled; he shivered remembering the beard. He didn't relish growing up and having a beard like the Headmaster…

"It is rather unsettling to be outmanuvered by that individual, no wonder dad can't stand him. It must be rather irritating to having a Malfoy being a part of the so-called 'Light side' and not having a part in his so-called conversion." Draco said as he scanned the board. "Oh, I'm checked. Wait its checkmate. My apologizes Blaise; my mind wasn't on the game. Another match? I owe you a handful of matches."

"With Harry around you couldn't strategize your way out of a ball of parchment. George? You any good?" Blaise said in a flirtatious tone.

George blinked, he wasn't sure he was comfortable with someone Harry's age flirting with him so openly.

Fred glanced at Greg, rolling his eyes, "Is Zabini always like this?"

Greg shrugged, "Wouldn't know. I've never seen him act like this."

Harry climbed out of Draco's lap only to get tugged toward the bed and flushed furiously.

Vince groaned.

Draco glared, "I'm not going to do anything dishonourable. If I did anything of a disreputable nature I would have his guardian on my heels like a Cerberus watchdog. Trust me, the last thing I want is Professor Lupin angry at me."

Vince muttered an apology and turned to dig into his care package of sweets.

Harry whispered, "Are Crabbe and Goyle as terrible at studies as they appear? Or are they like Fred and George unmotivated?"

Draco glanced at Greg, "Greg's problem is he's dyslexic and his father refuses to accept it but I suspect that's Lord Goyle's problem as well. I do my best to help but if what he tries to read is all twisted up when he reads he can't learn well."

Harry nodded, "There was a kid in Grammar School who was like that. He struggled until the teachers realized it. His parents wouldn't help either but his teachers would test him after school orally. He would do presentations rather then write essays and if he had to write one a student would be given extra credit if they typed it for him."

Draco swallowed, "Muggles did that for a kid like Greg?" he was surprised, he called out, "Greg? Come here."

Greg made his way over, "Yes Draco?"

"Harry had a great idea about how to get better marks."

Greg frowned; "You told him?" he was rather embarrassed about his 'problem'.

"He asked if you were stupid like the idiot weasel or unmotivated like the twins. What would you have preferred I told him?" Draco told him annoyed.

Greg shifted nervously, "I understand. So what was his idea?"

Harry realized that Greg's problem really affected him. "Well…um…I knew this boy when I went to Muggle School before Hogwarts. He had the same problem and well his parents wouldn't help him either. They were content to treat him like he was stupid."

Greg conjured a chair, deciding it might be worth listening if Draco thought so. He was the leader of Slytherin for a reason. "So what did they do?"

"He knew how to read but the letters would get jumbled you know? Like someone knocked over your elementary potions ingredients kit?" Harry asked.

Greg nodded, "That's what words in the textbook look like. Like a book was hit with a confundus jinx."

Harry grinned, "He wasn't stupid, he'd learn to compensate by remembering everything he heard."

Greg laughed, "Wow, pretty smart for a Muggle."

"He ended up moving to the top four or five students rather then last in marks. He had to have the chapter read to him. All his exams had to be oral. Isn't that why you can do any spell McGonagall or Flitwick show us or a potion if you're partnered with someone who reads the book for you?" Harry asked.

Greg smiled, "Wonder why you're the only person to figure that out. You're a Lion."

"I'm also pretty intelligent. Just ask your Head of House. I'm a decent brewer when I don't have him hovering around my cauldron and glowering all the time." Harry blushed.

Greg asked nervously, "I know you're always busy but,"

Harry grinned, "I've got an idea, Fred!"

Greg groaned.

Fred walked toward them, his hands shoved in his robes, "Yeah?"

"You took your OWLS so you have fewer classes and there is no Quidditch." Harry said sternly.

Fred scowled. "Yeah, Mum was annoyed with us for doing so poorly. I managed an Outstanding at Care of Magical Creatures and Potions though. Even got an Exceeds Expectations for Transfiguration and Charms."

"Cool. Then you can help Greg. Remember he'll owe you." Harry said smirking remembering what Draco said about Slytherins and their view of 'favours.'

"Hm…I'll be needing someone to work for low wages at the shop when we get it." Fred scowled, "Though we're in serious jeopardy now."

Draco noticed how quickly Fred's mood turned, "What happened?"

"Lost our life's savings betting with Bagman." Fred said after glancing at George who was intent on his Wizarding Chess match and couldn't hear him.

"Betting with Bagman? At the World Cup?"

Fred nodded grimly, "We won. We said Ireland would win but Krum would catch the Snitch. The scoundrel paid us in Leprechaun gold."

Draco was incensed, "Leprechaun gold? That's poor business. Gambling has a proud history of being part of the Magical Gaming for eons. Since the beginning of Quidditch! I'll complain to Dad. How much did you bet?"

"Thirty-seven Galleons, fifteen Sickles and three Knuts, it was all we had. Oh wait, he credited us five Galleons for one of our trick wands. Said he'd never seen anything so convincing." Fred grumbled, "So it was a total of forty-two Galleons, fifteen Sickles and three Knuts. You remember that's exactly what happened. Ireland won but Krum caught the Snitch ending the game."

Draco nodded, "What were your odds?"

"Ten to one. So he paid us around 450 Galleons or thereabouts." Fred scowled, "Don't remember exactly, we took him at his word and went to celebrate Ireland's win but of course our money was gone by morning. He's been dodging us ever since. We've tried to talk to him whenever he's at Hogwarts but he's always making sure we can't get him alone."

"Pays bets back in leprechaun gold. I overheard Dad mentioning something about the Goblins wanting to do an audit on him. He's also missing a member of his department."

"Oh yes, Jorkins?" Fred said quickly, "I remember Percy mentioning her over the summer. Crouch was worried. I didn't think the old stick in the mud could care about anyone. Hasn't she been found yet? Surely they're looking for her seriously, she's been missing since July or thereabouts. It's November…"

"I've got an idea, why don't you tutor Greg? He can pay you a bit and I'll see about getting Dad to see if he can get Bagman to pay you properly. Perhaps, you can convince Dad to invest in your Joke Shop? I know Harry has money to burn and you already have an employee in Greg. He's smart as a whip at following verbal instructions and a highly imaginative brewer. He once got complimented by papa." Draco smirked.

Fred held out his hand, "I'll tutor you if you work for us. I do need someone to see our Products in Slytherin. I'm taking on Mafalda as well; she's got few options in the Wizarding World with her background. Most people won't look past her Muggle and Squib origins and realize she's a Prewett and a Black."

"Two employees and you haven't even opened up shop yet." Draco teased, "That's something."

"Oh," Harry said startled, "You need to talk to Remus. I forgot to tell you. He's your god."

"WHAT!" Fred yelped, "Professor Lupin?"

Harry smirked, "He's a Marauder, you know the ones that taught you sooo much?"

"Really?" Fred asked shocked, "Which one?"

"Which one what?" George asked mostly intent on his chess match but Fred's confusion and shock was hard to ignore- it was a twin thing.

"He's Moony." Harry laughed.

"Moony? So…"

"My dad was Prongs, Sirius was Padfoot, Remus was Moony and that useless scum Peter Pettigrew was Wormtail." Harry scowled.

"Weird names." Fred mused, "Why were they called that?"

"Nicknames. Sirius is innocent by the way; he didn't betray my parents and he didn't want me dead. He was after Scabbers that lousy good for nothing rat." Harry snapped, he wasn't mentioning they were animagus yet.

"What kind of a nickname is Wormtail, the others are cool." George asked not looking up from the board.

"The kind of nickname you give to a weaselly person who sells their loyalty to the highest bidder and betrays friends who would die for him." Harry glared at the floor. "He rather resembles a balding fat rat with watery beady eyes. You wouldn't trust him near your inventions for fear he'd sell them to Zonko's."

"I see. So he's like Ron?" Fred would have snickered but Harry's face made him reconsider that.

Harry swallowed, "I suppose…only Ron's taller…"

Draco remembered Peter Pettigrew in Harry's memories from his case before the Judicial Committee. Harry's description of Pettigrew was accurate as well as his hostility well placed. He was sure Harry wasn't being completely honest regarding why the Marauders were called such odd nicknames.

Fred turned to Greg and asked him to go get the textbook for the class he was struggling the most with as long as it wasn't History of Magic because he had purposely failed it but if he asked nicely George might help him. George refused to fail but didn't get high enough marks to take all N.E.W.T. level classes.

Greg scurried off to get his barely opened Transfiguration and Charms texts, holding him out stiffly. He swallowed and recited his homework, "Because of my reading issue I write terrible essays."

Fred summoned his wand case and opened it, "20 Sickles." He said holding out two quills.

Greg blinked, "What? I have,"

"Not quills like these. They are Dictation and spell-checking quills, the red turkey quill is the spell check and the great horned owl quill is dictation."

Greg's eyes shone, "Did you invent them?"

Fred smirked, "Yes. Also available is Smart Answer but I don't think it would be beneficial yet."

Greg handed Fred his textbooks and went to dig out his sweets money. "Thanks. These should be really helpful."

"I'll be glad to recopy your essays, as long as your dictation quill is still sharp. They need to be replaced every few months. I think they last, let me check. George? How long do the quills last?"

"Smart answer lasts three and a half months. You use it less often. Dictation quills much be replaced every six weeks. Spell-check quills last about five of McGonagall's writing assignments. That was the last batch. I did some refining. You running more tests on them?" George said as his bishop 'killed' Blaise's rook.

"Selling a dictation and spell-check to Goyle, I'm going to see if they help him get better marks. He needs a tutor. You're the one who got Outstanding at Herbology. Want to help?"

"What's his issue?"

"Textbooks."

"Oh. Like Charlie?"

"Yeah. If it weren't for Bill and Percy he'd have flunked out I think. Smart but had issues with reading well." Fred called back.

"Sure. History too?"

"If it's not too much trouble." Greg was a bit embarrassed his Gryffindor counterparts were willing to help him with his studies.

"Don't think we'll go easier on you on the Pitch just because we're tutoring you." George winced as Blaise's queen punched his knight.

Fred moved over to sit on Greg's trunk and quietly read out loud his homework and helped the Fourth Year snake brainstorm his essays for McGonagall and Flitwick.

Draco let Harry snuggle.

Blaise was surprised to find that George Weasley of all people was very keen at Chess. He had found someone who was also interested in boys; it would be too weird discussing them with Draco despite their friendship. Odd as it might be he was considering the benefits of a friendship with the Weasley twins.

 

 

Chapter Text

Chapter 20

 

Harry had fell asleep on Draco’s bed, fighting to hide a blush Draco had undressed them both and curled up with him.  It was seven in the morning when Draco woke to pounding and shouting on the door.

 

“Draco! Open up this instant. I know you’re in there. You can’t hide in there forever.”

 

Draco groaned; Pansy, that useless dog-faced witch. He threw on a robe and strut to the door, where he threw it open hissing. “You’re too loud for this early in the morning woman. There are six boys and two snakes in here trying to sleep.”

 

“Is that little Gryffindor whore in there?  I can’t believe you brought Lions into our sanctuary; Weasleys and prissy Potter. What do you see in that idiotic clod? He is always looking down his nose at us and he is always getting you in trouble. I can’t believe Professor Snape is singing his praises now. Manipulative brat. He CHEATED to get in that tournament and then changed his mind. I can’t believe you’ve fallen for his lies,”

 

“For a Headmaster-hating wench you echo his sentiments exactly.” Draco said with a snarl. “For the record, that ‘whore’ is my mate. The acknowledged consort of the Prince of Slytherin.”

 

“I thought that was a lie.” Pansy gasped, “I’m supposed to be your consort. We’ve been practically betrothed since the cradle.”

 

“Betrothed according to my mother perhaps, but not according to my dad or my papa.”

 

“Papa? Dad? What are you talking about?” Pansy was surprised.

 

“Didn’t you hear? The woman who bore me was thrown out of the Manor. Their Bonding was annulled and Dad was immediately bond to his mate.”

 

“Don’t tell falsehoods, of course your father is still Bonded to Narcissa.” Pansy said shaking her head as convinced Draco had lost it.

 

“Really? It was announced in all the papers. Professor Prince-Malfoy, Head of Slytherin House and Hogwarts’ Potions Master, formerly Professor Snape was recently Bonded to his long-time love Lord Lucius Malfoy, member for Wizengamot. Professor Prince-Malfoy blood-adopted me. I think I know who my parents are. As for your information Ms. Parkinson, Harry was raised by Muggles who locked him in cupboards and starved him. They treated him worst then we treat our house elves. I mean people like my mother who takes great pleasure in using the Cruciatus on House elves.”

 

“Your mother is a wonderful woman; strong, smart and someone I would love to have as a mother.” Pansy stammered.

 

“She is a selfish woman who sooner beat her child then nurse it. She hates the whole world; she only wanted to be Lady Malfoy. She hates Dad; she spent all of her time being Dark. She didn’t even worry about planning my education only making sure my wardrobe wasn’t embarrassing.”

 

“At least you learned how to dress properly, unlike stuck-up Potter who dresses like he’s got no idea of proper etiquette or fashion. He doesn’t even understand the concept of making friends with people of the right class. He might be Muggle-raised but that boy is an embarrassment to heirs everywhere.”

 

“Leave. You have to the count of ten in Gaelic to leave before I have you blacklisted in our house.”

 

“You restored respectability to the daughter of a squib and a Muggle? And declared two blood traitors as pureblood heirs? Have you lost your mind?”

 

“Sonorus.” Draco’s quicksilver eyes flashed with barely contained fury. “Slytherin, this is your Prince. The Parkinson heiress Pansy has been demoted; she is banned from my presence, not to come with in six feet. She is the lowest ranked snake, for now first years outrank her.”

 

“Draco!”

 

“Vince? Remove this insufferably rude person from our doorstep. I want her escorted to the entrance to the girls’ dormitory.” Draco said glaring at Pansy.

 

“You’re going to turn your back on me? I’ll make you regret this. I’ll inform your mother of your rudeness. She’ll have you punished.”

 

Draco snapped, “I have no mother. I have two fathers; I have nothing magical or blood tying me to Narcissa Black. I am happy she is no longer a part of my life. She is a mad as her sister Bellatrix, I only wish they’d locked both of them up together.”

 

Vince rubbed the sleep from his eyes and grabbed Pansy’s arm, “You should go. Now.” Before Draco lost his temper and cursed her or something…

 

“I’ll leave when I’m ready.” Pansy retorted, wrenching her arm painfully from Vince’s grasp.

 

“I SAID LEAVE MY PRESENCE WENCH!” magic exploded from Draco and Pansy was hurled out of the Boys’ Dormitory and collapsed face first on the stone flagged floor of the Slytherin Common Room. Taking a deep breath, Draco returned to his warm bed, removing his robe and crawled in bed with Harry.

 

Harry whispered, “I’m sorry I’m causing so much trouble.”

 

Draco laughed, “You trouble? That person had it coming to them. She had ideas above her station. Acting like she was my consort when she had no right to choose that position for herself. She dared to mention that woman and that was the end of my patience."

 

“Perhaps, I shouldn’t try to ask her out.” Greg muttered from his bed on the other side of Blaise.

 

Vince’s bed was closest to the door, followed by Greg, Blaise, Draco and then Theo.

 

“She has a temper and poor word choice.” Draco muttered.

 

“I’d hate to see what she would say if you did ask her.” Blaise said sleepily, his voice filled with annoyance. “She’d probably treat you as badly as the twins’ traitor brother. She’s always making fun of you anyway. She’s forgotten that Slytherins are supposed to stick by one another in public.”

 

“Perhaps she needs a lesson…” Draco mused.

 

“In that case my Prince, I suggest you grant that right to Mafalda. I know Pansy and her cronies have taken great pleasure in bullying the poor girl. At least they had the decency to do it in house.” Blaise said yawning. “Better to have a snake as your friend and ally, than as an enemy who can strike out when you least expect it.”

 

“True. I’d rather be Draco’s friend then enemy. I am sorry about all those fights we had.” Harry said snuggling to his boyfriend.

 

Blaise snorted, muttering in Parseltongue, “Half of those fights were because that weasel started them and you had to back him up. Ron was always trying to make things impossibly tense between you two.”

 

Harry winced, “Really? I didn’t know…”

 

“Honestly, you can be quite oblivious to the machinations of your so-called friends. The reason we don’t tolerate Muggleborns well is because they come with strange and dangerous ideas.”

 

“Ideas like what?” Harry hissed back.

 

“Like two wizards or two witches can’t be Bonded. Or that House Elves are slaves or abused. Granted there are those like Narcissa who took great pleasure is torturing House Elves but that is rare. They are bound to a family by choice; we don’t bind the progeny of House Elves until they are old enough to choose. They are usually willing to serve, especially those who are chosen to serve a child of the family from birth. The reason the Slytherins are better coiffed and dressed is because their personal elves often arrive before dawn to press their master or mistress’ clothes. It would be the greatest dishonour to have their charge spotted with a wrinkle. They get paid in pride; pride in a job well done, pride in seeing their charge well thought of. They don’t need ‘vacations’, they get that if their charge is in school. They rarely are needed then. As for ‘sick-leave’ Elves are allowed time to recover, especially if it is a disease that their charge could catch.” Blaise shrugged.

 

Harry nodded, “Thirsty.”

 

There was a soft pop and Dobby appeared with a steaming goblet of Butterbeer and a pressed outfit on his arm.

 

There were soft accompanying pops and five more elves appeared, bearing steaming drinks and freshly pressed clothes.

 

Harry giggled, “What service.”

 

“We live to serve.” The house elves bowed.

 

Each boy took a drink, pleased because their elf knew them so well. Draco had coffee with a little brandy, Blaise had hot chocolate, Theo milk, Vince Butterbeer with a little firewhiskey and Greg had pumpkin juice.

 

“I guess we should get dressed.” Draco said pressing his lips to the nape of Harry’s neck.

 

Harry moaned softly. “Dray…”

 

Blaise chuckled, a bit jealous of their intimacy. He had hopes of having a man who worshiped him like Draco worshiped Harry, but he worried he would find himself a dominant Chuvash when he came into his inheritance. Blaise wanted to be a submissive but they were supposedly rare.

 

Reluctantly, the six boys dressed for the day.

 

Theo couldn’t help admiring Blaise’s long lean body, rippling with natural muscle.

 

Draco shot Theo a look; he needed to protect himself better. Vince could be rather vindictive. Greg was more accepting, since he hadn't said anything rude but if he relied on them to improve his marks, then insulting them was unwise in the extreme. Then again, Draco was certain that he wasn't the only one with suspicions regarding Greg's sister Giselle and her best friend Millie Bulstrode's relationship.

 

Theo coloured immediately and turned away.

 

The boys trooped up to breakfast, Slytherin House behind them.

 

Pansy was still glowering, but the first years had taken Draco’s words to heart and they walked ahead of her.

 

Vince walked in front of Draco and Harry; Blaise was one step behind Draco but ahead of Greg who brought up the rear. The Seventh Year Prefects and their year mates and so on followed them.

 

Fred and George joined them at the staircase. George filing into place behind Harry in line with Greg but Fred took his place beside Vince nodding.

 

The astonishment they received upon entering the Great Hall was first shocked silence and then hushed whispers.

 

Draco met the Durmstrang guests who were standing beside Slytherin’s table. He let go of Harry’s hand and bowed to Viktor Krum the acknowledged Prince of Durmstrang. “It would be our honour if you would join us. It is my wish for you to sit with me Viktor.”

 

Viktor bowed, “It would be an honour to join you. I see new companions this meal.”

 

Draco nodded, “My apologies for my absence. I hope my house has shown you the proper respect.”

 

Harry realised this was a dance, like that of two dominant males facing off to see who was more dominant.

 

“Your second Zabini was very attentive in your absence.” Viktor gestured in Blaise’s direction.

 

“Yes, I am glad to hear that.” Draco took his place at the table and gestured for Viktor to sit across.

 

Viktor bowed, waiting for the ladies to sit before sitting himself.

 

Draco noticed Viktor’s eyes drifting towards George who flushed and stared at the hands in his lap. “I would like to introduce my new companions. Harry Potter, my consort and his guardians and housemates Fred and George Weasley. Harry is the Heir to two pureblood lines. Fred and George are grandsons to another.”

 

Viktor bowed his head, and replied in heavily accented English, “Plezed to make ur akquintnc.”

 

George nodded, “An honour.”

 

“Has anyone mentioned that most of us can play Quidditch?” Draco asked, trying to get George and Viktor to relax.

 

“Really?” Viktor asked as he filled his plate with a lot of meat.

 

Flickering in and out of visibility Shishreyu hissed, “Chuvash that one. The tall dark one. Strange though, right and not quite right he smells.”

 

Harry and Blaise stared at the snake.

 

What do you mean?” Harry hissed in a soft whisper.

 

He seems trapped. His Chuvash did not rise completely. He can’t shed skin and become a true Chuvash.” Harry’s snake hissed back.

 

Viktor’s ears turned a darker shade of brown, with some red. Hissing back, “Embarrassment I am, Chuvash I expected to be. Fly I can, magic I can wield great but transform I cannot.”

 

George’s ears twitched, Fred gave no sign he heard. The hissing falling from Viktor’s lips faintly, made him feel odd. He felt himself harden; he understood the words in the hissing. He was just slow to translate them.

 

The boy who smells like earth and greenhouses can hear us.” Paradox hissed flicking his tail in George’s direction.

 

Blaise turned to glance at George, “You understand Parseltongue?”

 

George swallowed, “I don’t know why. Fred can’t.”

 

Viktor’s eyes fell heavily on the boy who spoke Parseltongue so slowly and shakily that he seemed to barely be capable of speaking it at all. “Have you spoken it before?”

 

George tilted his head, “This is Parseltongue? I thought it was a made up language. Charlie and I used to talk to each other in secret. Besides Fred, he is the closest brother I have. Charlie knew I liked boys… I used to like Oliver until I realized he was with Percy. No one else seemed to guess. I’m glad they are back together. I just hope Charlie finds someone.”

 

Was it easier for Charlie to speak then you?” Blaise asked out of curiousity.

 

George nodded, “This is hard to speak sometimes and I take longer to understand.”

 

You remind me of myself.” Viktor hissed back, his eyes flickering all over George.

 

George shivered, the famous Seeker’s glances felt like caresses and he was highly embarrassed.

 

Blaise, Harry, Draco and Viktor couldn’t help smelling George’s arousal.

 

Pleased to make your acquaintance George.” Viktor hissed. “Tell me about yourself.”

 

George couldn’t speak, his mouth opened a few times but he couldn’t find words to speak English or Parseltongue.

 

Draco took over after Harry caught him up to the conversation in Parseltongue by answering Viktor’s question in Russian. “He is the grandson of a Wizengamot Lord, fifth born son of the Lord’s firstborn. He is quite skilled at Herbology; he is an inventor and enjoys pranks. He is also the best Beater in school; he could give Volkov and Vulchanov lessons.”

 

Viktor grinned, “Must see you play sometime.”

 

Draco smirked, “Why not after breakfast? I’ll be glad to fly as a Chaser and give you my place as Seeker. We’re short on anyway with Flint off the team due to marks.”

 

“Gryffindor doesn’t have a Keeper, remember? Oliver graduated.” Harry whispered aft Draco explained his idea in English.

 

“Ivanovski is a Keeper.” Viktor called out in Russian to a fellow Durmstrang student.

 

Blaise blushed, “Can I play? Please Draco? I’m a really, really good Chaser.”

 

Draco glanced at him, “Very well. I suppose I should ask Pucey to fly with us, he is the best Chaser we’ve got on the team that is. Bletchley can be Keeper. With Viktor we’re about even. I’m sure papa will let us use the pitch.”

 

Fred smirked, “I know Angelina is supposed to be our captain. I’ll go ask her if she wants to fly.”

 

George rolled his eyes, “That poor girl worships the ground he walks on.” He stood reluctantly took. “I should,”

 

Before he finished his thought aloud, Viktor was at his side kissing his hand. “Hurry back.”

 

George swallowed, “Greg? Keep an eye on Harry I won’t be long.” He fairly ran towards Gryffindor’s table.

 

“What are you doing here traitor?” Ron snarled. “You got Viktor Krum to kiss your hand? What are you? A useless poof?”

 

Seamus smacked Ron in the back of the head, “Like you haven’t been following him around like you had a crush on him. Always at his heels begging for an autograph? I get he’s an amazing Quidditch Player but,”

 

“I don’t have feelings for guys, famous Quidditch players or not! It’s disgusting.” Ron shouted.

 

“Be careful Ron. You sound like a Muggle.” Fred said harshly after obtaining Angelina’s consent for the match.

 

Hermione stiffened. “Why would you two be spending time with priggish people like Malfoy and cheaters like Harry?”

 

“Harry is not a cheater and I dislike hearing someone malign our brother.”

 

“He is also our charge.” George said nervously, before turning to Lee Jordan, “You want to announce for our match? We miss playing Quidditch and you’re the best announcer we’ve got.”

 

Lee grinned, “Sure thing.”

 

“You really got us a Keeper?” Angelina asked, her eyes shining with admiration of Fred who strutted.

 

“Krum offered a Keeper from Durmstrang. It seems he’s their equivalent of Draco, he’s their prince.”

 

“Draco offered his place as Seeker to Viktor.” George added fighting a blush.

 

Alicia glanced at him and said quietly, “I don’t have time to play. Too much homework. You’ll have to get someone else.”

 

George winced, he knew she liked him and it embarrassed him because he couldn’t return the favour.

 

Angelina moaned, “Where am I supposed to get a Chaser now!”

 

Colin spoke up unexpectedly, “Shay can fly. He is always on the Pitch with a Quaffle when it’s free. You should let him fly. Dean’s good too.”

 

The table turned to the camera-obsessed third year.

 

Fred laughed, “It’s settled then. We have two spare Chasers then.”

 

Angelina looked up at him gratefully, “Thanks.”

 

“No problem princess. Got to return to Harry. In my thoughts though.” Fred strutted off towards the Slytherin table.

 

Ron tried to fire a hex at Fred, “Tarantallegra.”

 

George leapt in front of it, the hex bouncing of his skin if it couldn’t penetrate it. He spun around and snarled, “How dare you attack a brother in such a cowardly way!”

 

“You are no brothers of mine.” Ron glared, ignoring Hermione who tried to get him to stop by wrestling away his wand. He smacked her so hard it rang throughout the chamber.

 

“Ronald Weasley!” McGonagall cried out in horrified shock.

 

Ron glared at her, “I’m doing what no one else will, punish traitors.”

 

“Detention.” She called out sharply.

 

“I beg your pardon Minerva but that Weasley already has detention with me for two weeks for striking a fellow student.” Severus practically purred.

 

“Then he is to have detention for the rest of December with me and banned from the Yule Ball.” McGonagall grabbed him by the ear and dragged him out of the Great Hall. “I will be contacting your parents.”

 

Ginny was in tears, one of the few reactions one could get from her.

 

Hermione was in tears herself; her hand on her cheek as if she could hardly believe Ron had hit her.

 

George brushed off his clothes, and headed back to Slytherin’s table.

 

XoooooX

 

Slytherin barely paid the Gryffindor table any mind until Ron started screaming at George.

 

“I don’t have feelings for guys, famous Quidditch players or not! It’s disgusting.”

 

Blaise, Draco, Harry and Viktor stiffened.

 

Harry worried how Viktor would take that since the speaker was clearly Ron and even as Ron’s former friend he remembered how the tall thin redhead used to dog Viktor’s footsteps and beg for autographs practically drooling.

 

Viktor’s eyes widened in horror when George leaped between Ron and Fred after the former cast a spell at Fred’s back. “No!” he gasped in Russian and Parseltongue.

 

Everyone was surprised when the spell had no adverse effect on George.

 

Mafalda was not surprised but shocked that Ron, her fool of a cousin dared not only to injure a girl but also to cowardly attack his own brother. She began planning harsh punishments for him, despite being struck by Ron her previous plans for helping Fred and George get back at Hermione would continue.

 

Viktor and Fred both were examining George for injury.

 

Finding none, Viktor crushed George in his arms, “That was a foolish thing to do. How did you know it would do that? Not hurt you?”

 

George swallowed, “I didn’t. I just would rather get hit myself then Fred. Mostly because I knew it was coming. I guessed the spell and it’s intent.”

 

“You idiot!” Fred glared, “Why didn’t you cast a shield?”

 

“Simple, I’m not supposed to use my wand out of the classroom or when I’m studying.” George rolled his eyes. “Besides, if I never drew my wand I can’t be painted as the aggressor, can I? Mum can’t blame me for it. Besides, Ron hit Hermione. Mum won’t easily forgive that.”

 

Fred sighed, “Stubborn fool but thanks for watching my back.”

 

George laughed, “What are twins for?”

 

“Partners in pranking.” Fred chuckled.

 

“So my brave foolish friend,” Viktor hissed in George’s ear, “will you be my date to the Yule Ball?”

 

George turned beet red, whispering back, “Yes.”

 

Fred turned to look at George sensing his embarrassment and excitement, “What’s up?”

 

George’s eyes shone with happiness, “I have a date.”

 

Fred glanced at Viktor, “I guess he’ll do.”

 

George swallowed, thinking at his twin, 'Thanks.'

 

Viktor pulled George to his side of the table; “I’m keeping an eye on you.”

 

Draco enjoyed the ease that George and Viktor seemed to flow into a relationship. He wondered briefly why the spell hadn’t affected George; it seemed to bounce as if impacting Dragon hide or Veela wings. Was George meant to be Chuvash? He could speak Parseltongue, a sign of his Black blood. He hadn’t heard of anyone being capable of resisting spells before coming into their inheritance; then again if George was a Sixth Year he was past sixteen. Unless, he was more like Viktor than anyone else...

 

After all, Fred didn’t understand Parseltongue at all…

 

Harry said George didn’t speak as well as himself or Blaise, sounding rather stilted but not speaking quite as poorly as Severus. Something was odd about that…

 

George did his best to eat but it was hard to concentrate with Viktor so close, he remained in a constant state of arousal the whole time he was near the Bulgarian Seeker.

 

 

Chapter Text

Chapter 20

 

Draco received Permission from his papa to have the Quidditch match, having gestured him over after McGonagall dragged out Ron.

 

Viktor and his schoolmate who had been volunteered to play as Gryffindor’s Keeper had gone back to their ship for their brooms while the Slytherin and Gryffindors went to dig out their Quidditch robes or at least something warm to wear outside. After all, not everyone had Quidditch robes, Blaise didn’t.

 

George looked nervous to be flying against his date to the Yule Ball next month.

 

Harry was excited and practically flattening Draco after returning with his Firebolt. “I’m so excited! I missed flying.” He was a bit saddened that he wouldn’t be flying against Draco who had been his best competition but to fly against someone like Viktor was amazing.

 

Draco caught Harry and barely managed not to fall, “I’m glad you’re excited. I missed Flying too.  Remind me to show you my pitch.”

 

Harry had forgotten Draco had his own pitch at the Manor, “I can’t wait. We played Quidditch at the Burrow this summer after the World Cup. It was fun!”

 

“We’ll have to have some matches over the summer.” Draco said with a smile.

 

“Loser gets kissed?” Harry teased.

 

“You’re on.” Draco said kissing Harry so hard he felt the boy shiver.

 

Harry gulped when the kiss broke, “That was just evil. Are you trying to make it difficult for me to fly?”

 

“Of course not. I want you to fly. I want you to fly your best against Viktor. I also want you to remember how I like to kiss because when you win I expect a kiss just like that one.” Draco smirked.

 

George swallowed; he wondered what it would be like to be kissed like that.

 

Nearby Blaise was having a similar thought.

 

The Quidditch players made their way to the pitch.

 

Seamus hugged Colin, “Thanks Cols.”

 

Colin blushed while his younger brother Dennis giggled.

 

Neville looked on from the fringe of the group heading out the pitch, he was surprised Harry was with Draco. But he had wondered if the Gryffindor Seeker was bent; he was too shy to admit that he’d had a crush on Harry. He never thought Harry would be interested in him that way…

 

Due to the last minute nature of the match, Severus had offered to referee but promised to a bit fairer this match then the one against Hufflepuff during Draco, Harry, Blaise and Seamus’ First Year.

 

Harry had laughed to himself remembering the match following the one where Quirrell jinxed his Nimbus where Severus was anti-Gryffindor in his calls.

 

The teams took the field.

 

Despite it being Draco’s idea, Draco ceded the captaincy to Adrian who was a decent bloke. To his knowledge, Adrian had never actually followed Flint’s game plan and cheated or played dishonourably. That made him a good choice…

 

The captains gave their team a pep talk and told them to have fun. Adrian was a bit overwhelmed in regards to having Viktor Krum on ‘his’ House team.

 

The noise of the match soon brought a familiar redhead to the pitch.

 

The Snitch was released and quickly disappeared in the cold grey winter sky, leaving Harry and Viktor to circle the pitch.

 

Adrian snatched the Quaffle, Blaise and Draco flying close.

 

Grimacing, George knocked a Bludger at Adrian.

 

Adrian barely managed to dodge in time.

 

Blaise took off after the falling Quaffle snatching it before a Gryffindor Chaser even got close. Using his natural instincts at flight due to his Chuvash blood Blaise scored the first goal.

 

Viktor’s volunteer Keeper was stunned; he hadn’t even seen the Quaffle coming. He caught it and tossed it to the Referee.

 

Severus caught the Quaffle tossing in the air to start it again.

 

Draco stole the ball under Angelina’s nose.

 

Fred tried to hit a Bludger at him but Greg’s bat was faster and instead he was flying away from the Bludger.

 

In the space of a blink, Draco scored.

 

It was now 20- 0 with Slytherin ahead. It soon became apparent, despite the Weasley Beaters who were likened to Human Bludgers and the talented Chasers that Katie and Angelina were known to be; that they weren’t quite on the same level as Draco, Blaise and Adrian.

 

Harry quickly realized what that quality was, Draco was Veela and Blaise was a Chuvash. Despite not coming into their inheritances yet they were born flyers and had keener instincts then his team mates Angelina, Katie and Seamus. Did that mean that Adrian had magical creature blood as well?

 

By the time Slytherin scored a hundred- their tenth goal, it became apparent that if Harry didn’t catch the snitch that Gryffindor would lose in a landslide.

 

Harry looked around vigorously, eager to find the Snitch first.

 

It finally made an appearance and Harry dove for it.

 

Viktor saw it too and soon they were neck-and-neck in a dive.

 

Those who had been privileged to attend the World Cup seemed to be seeing a repeat of Lynch vs. Krum. Harry, some realized, was a much better flyer.

 

Harry was desperate to win but so was Viktor who wanted to show off for George.

 

Then it happened.

 

Viktor and Harry’s hands closed over the ball.

 

Both could feel a wing touching their palm.

 

They managed to pull out of the dive safely with one hand.

 

“Who has the Snitch? Is it Viktor? Or our own Seeker Harry?” Lee shouted.

 

Severus blew his whistle, calling the game to a stop. He flew towards Harry and Viktor; he had never seen a match like that. His snakes were slaughtering Gryffindor and Harry might have… he wasn’t sure yet. He reached the Seekers and ordered them to open their hands. To his shock, the Snitch was clearly in both their hands. Each boy had half the snitch in their grasp. To check the probability of a dual catch, Severus used a rare spell that only worked if caught by two persons. The Snitch shimmered and split in two; one fluttering weakly in Harry’s hand and the other in Viktor’s. Severus sighed, “In a score of 280 to 150, Slytherin wins. It is my determination that clearly both Harry Potter and Viktor Krum have caught the snitch.”

 

Viktor clutched the Snitch in his hand, flew straight at George pulling him onto his Firebolt and kissed him deeply as he pressed the Snitch into his hand.

 

George barely had a chance to consider fighting, the moment Viktor touched him his arousal became quite apparent. The kiss blew him away; it felt like he was riding one of those firecrackers that he had been experimenting on with Fred.

 

Fred laughed; he could feel just how happy George was with that kiss which was a bit odd, because he wouldn’t enjoy being kissed by a bloke.

 

Harry was a bit distressed that he hadn’t really won. It was the first time he caught the snitch and they still lost. He landed dejectedly; he’d been looking forward to winning. He should have realized he was flying against the Greatest Seeker in the World and hadn’t a chance.

 

Draco sighed, Harry was upset. He flew toward the boy landed and kissed him. “You looked amazing in that dive. For a moment I thought I was back at the World Cup. You were amazing. Flawless. Merlin, you were better then Lynch. The only Seeker in Britain who could rival Viktor Krum! You managed a double catch. Do you know how rare that is?”

 

Harry’s mood was lightened by Draco’s praise.

 

Lucius was very impressed and so was Remus, both of whom had come to watch the match after being informed of it by Severus.

 

Remus picked up Harry and hugged him, “I forgot how amazing you were. That was… do you realize Krum is the best Seeker in the World? You caught a Snitch with him!”

 

Lucius congratulated his son and their House on the win. He had plenty of praise of Draco, Blaise and Adrian especially having been a fine Chaser in his day. He decided he was taking them out to dinner to celebrate. “I am so proud of you all, that was an excellent match. I would like to treat you all to dinner.”

 

Blaise grinned, “You mean it Mr. Lucius?” his childhood name for his best friend’s father.

 

“Yes Blaise.”

 

Blaise danced around with joy.

 

Lucius cordially invited Viktor in Russian, who had finally landed after snogging the daylights out of George Weasley. “Mr. Krum, if you would like to join us.”

 

“Only if George can come.” Was the Bulgarian’s reply.

 

Charlie appeared beside them, congratulating Harry and gently ribbing his brothers about the match.

 

Blaise stared in awe at the tall redhead, Slytherin help him if he wasn’t the finest specimen of wizard he’d ever seen. He spotted the darkness of a burn and winced, “That must have hurt.”

 

Charlie turned toward the musical tenor voice with a hint of an accent, “Oh this? I had forgotten about it. It’s a couple hours old. Be gone by morning, I’m a fast healer.”

 

Is that a burn from a Dragon?” Blaise asked excitedly, absentmindedly slipping into Parseltongue.

 

Charlie blinked, “Yes. How did you know?” No one was really supposed to know about the dragons until the First Task on Friday.

 

Blaise grinned, “Because, I’m the son of Chuvash.”

 

Charlie shifted nervously, replying in English. “I work for Harvey Ridgebit’s Dragon Sanctuary in Romania.”

 

“We’re very proud of our Charlie.” Fred smirked.

 

Viktor glanced at the tall man, “You are his brother, no?”

 

Charlie nodded, “I’m a few years older, five to be exact.”

 

Parseltongue was easier for Viktor than English, so he asked quietly if Charlie thought it would be a problem if George joined them for dinner.

 

Charlie shook his head, “I doubt it if Lord Malfoy is inviting them, he’s been good to my family as of late.” Politely referring to the help Lord Malfoy had given to Percy.

 

Viktor smirked, “You’re coming beloved.”

 

George swallowed nervously.

 

Fred was surprised by all the hissing and couldn’t understand anything. “Huh?”

 

“Nothing Fred.” Charlie said teasingly.

 

George was a bit surprised when Viktor took his hand but didn’t really fight him. He was nervous but pleased that someone like Viktor, who could have anyone, seemed to want him. He’d spent most of his life being treated like an embarrassment, nothing he did was ever good enough and his mother never bothered to learn how to tell him apart from Fred. Yet this professional Seeker, the best in the world saw him as a separate person from Fred and thought he was desirable.

 

XoooooX

 

The group all assembled at the Entrance Hall, where Charlie arrived to chaperone his twin brothers.

 

George had to transfigure his and Fred’s best jeans and sweater to something more like what the Slytherins wore; freshly pressed woollen slacks and silk shirts. He even transfigured handkerchiefs into ties.

 

Fred came with Angelina, Seamus with Colin, Katie with Dean and George was going with Viktor.

 

Harry was wearing a blue raw silk shirt, grey slacks and silver wool vest. Draco tied a silk scarf around his neck like a tie and wore a Slytherin green cardigan over a silver shirt with obsidian coloured trousers under a warm cloak.

 

Remus reluctantly borrowed clothes from Lucius because his own were far too worn.

 

Lucius and Severus complimented each other as well as Draco by wearing similar colours beneath their outdoor wear.

 

Charlie showed up in Dragon leather pants, matching knee-high boots and vest over crisp white shirt.

 

Blaise couldn't help staring at George’s older brother, now that was a man. He oozed danger and sex appeal. Blaise felt so shy but he felt truly attracted for the first time in his life, he remembered that his name was Charlie and he was five years older then George. Slytherin’s cauldron, that made the man seven years older then him. A seven year age difference was nothing amoung Chuvash, it could be any amount from months to over ten years.

 

Greg had decided to ask Mafalda while Vince had brought Tracy, a rather shy fellow Fourth Year Slytherin rather than Pansy who was busy glaring the rest of the day while they were celebrating before getting ready for dinner.

 

Ivanovski invited a girl from his own school who he seemed close to Ekateirna Petrova who seemed shy and quiet but had a very Ravenclaw-like air about her.

 

After much discussion, they finally decided on French because it was rarer.

 

Shyly, Harry admitted he’d never had French food.

 

Draco hugged him and kissed his forehead, “If I have my way you’ll never cook or clean again. I intend to spend my life spoiling you.”

 

Harry said quietly, “But I like to cook...” He did, just not with someone glaring and yelling at him. He didn’t mind baking even if it was for his whale of a cousin, but he would prefer to do it for people he cared about rather than feared.

 

Draco thought about that for a moment, “Then with Dad’s approval, our house elves will be informed you are allowed to cook when you please.” Merlin forbid he refuse Harry anything, his Veela though unrisen would not allow it. Later, he may have to learn how to ‘discipline’ Harry because his Chuvash was more likely to be more wilful then his boyfriend was at present.

 

When Lucius was satisfied everyone coming was present, he turned an old Daily Prophet into a portkey and they grabbed hold of it.

 

Harry felt briefly ill after landing, outside a clearly expensive restaurant called Savoir Faire.

 

Remus gasped when he realized they most certainly weren’t in Diagon Alley. “Where is this?” he was a bit overwhelmed, something he would have to get over if he planned to be a part of Severus’ life with Lucius Malfoy.

 

Lucius chuckled, “Rue de Lion district in Paris, it’s an older version of Diagon Alley. Our family has ties to France and so we choose to eat here if we are in the mood for French Cuisine. Diagon doesn’t have a particularly fine French Restaurant, although there is that new restaurant in Hogsmeade but I haven’t had an opportunity to try it. Considering some of us French might be the best choice.”  He gave his name to the Maitre’d after leading them inside.

 

They were escorted to a large private room.

 

Blaise claimed a place on Charlie’s right and Draco’s left.

 

George sat between Charlie and Viktor.

 

Harry was between Remus and Draco.

 

It was a large long table in their private room.

 

Soon a waiter, quite cute entered with the wine list and asked for their orders in French.

 

Lucius ordered wine, water, cranberry juice, Firewhiskey, scotch and Butterbeer to start. He wasn’t going to care what they drank tonight, since they were celebrating.

 

A variety of French dishes were ordered and there was much conversation.

 

Blaise took the opportunity to flirt outrageously with Charlie whose deeply tanned looks and long sun-burnished red hair gave him a roguish look that did his Chuvash homage.

 

Charlie didn’t know quite what to make of the beautiful Slytherin teen but he had to silently admit he enjoyed the attention. After all he didn’t often get flirted with…

 

Viktor coaxed George to try a lot of exotic French cuisine and silently promised to spoil the youth he was quickly becoming fond of. His parents would no doubt approve, since his Chuvash hadn’t risen at his inheritance as expected; his parents, but most his mother had bemoaned that he wouldn’t find a proper mate.

 

George’s cheeks felt permanently tinted pink and probably clashed horribly with his red hair but he had to admit it was pleasant to be the subject of such attention from a famous Quidditch player. Considering he grew up in a shack rather then a Manor and was expecting no inheritance, he hadn’t dare hope to catch the eye of a person of Viktor’s prestige.

 

Harry enjoyed the attention from Draco; the older teen seemed to ignore everyone else. He enjoyed the steak but things like escargot weren’t his taste. He didn’t like wine, the smell made him nauseous. Firewhiskey and scotch burned both his throat and stomach; he quite preferred juice and Butterbeer.

 

All the couples enjoyed dinner and were truly thankful at the close of the evening after returning to Hogwarts.

 

XoooooX

 

Seamus and Colin managed talk Harry back up to Gryffindor Tower, at least for the night. As he settled into bed, he tried not to stare at Ron’s closed curtain. Most of the Gryffindors had apologized for believing he’d cheated and Ron was said to be in the dormitory. While Hermione glared reprovingly from her place across the common room. After some uneasy laughs, Harry turned to go upstairs. He felt something pulling him toward the dungeons; he turned to look back, “Draco.” falling from his lips in a faint hiss. He hadn’t slept without the other teen since he’d found himself with Severus after falling unconscious following his name coming from the Goblet of Fire.

 

George hugged himself; he was missing Viktor’s arms not that he would admit it. Viktor was on the ship and George was in the tower. He secretly wondered what a night in the man’s arms would be like but was too shy to ask. It was too soon, right? After all, they’d only just met really… but they seemed to fit with one another.

 

George ended up telling Fred to bring him his blankets and pillow, there wasn’t much difference between his cot bed at the Burrow and the stone flagged floor. George transfigured a pair of discarded jeans- probably Ron’s, into a carpet which he laid on despite Seamus’ protests.

 

Seamus, also the grandson of a lord claimed the floor was no place for one of their ancestry.

 

Neville had shyly protested George’s choice, even going so far as to offer to share his bed.

 

Seamus offered to sleep with Colin, he seemed a bit shy but eager to please the tall muscular Beater.

 

George laughed, protesting it was no hardship; Mum had punished him plenty of time forcing him to sleep on the cold floor of the cellar. The kitchen was only an option if she blood locked the cupboards.

 

Harry made his bed curtains impenetrable, casting silencing charms in case he had a nightmare. It was easy to return to old habits, but he missed the quiet reassuring presence of his Veela boyfriend. He felt cold and lonely, his body aching to be held…

 

He touched his wand briefly and cast a sleep spell on himself.

 

XoooooX

 

George woke sensing fear, he hissed for Harry’s snake after finding he couldn’t open Harry’s curtains.

 

Shishreyu appeared after sometime, “Master be in distress?”

 

George nodded, “I can’t get in and he’s scared.”

 

The snake nudged the invisibility cloak after finding she couldn’t wake him either, “Go wake Draco. Something is wrong.”

 

George reluctantly left Shishreyu in his place at Harry’s guard; covering himself with the invisibility cloak, he took the quickest path to the entrance to the Slytherin dungeons. Whispering the Gaelic password that was the proper name of Stonehenge, George slipped inside. It was late, nearly three in the morning so the fires were almost out in the grates and it was chilly in the common room. George whispered, “Lumos.” Before making his way up to the Fourth Year Boys Dormitory.

 

Blaise woke at once, throwing his curtains open. “George?” He hissed, he smelled the older Gryffindor though he couldn’t see him.

 

George nearly fell over, “Blaise? Did I wake you?”

 

“Yes moron. You walk like a mooncalf, all loud and plodding. It's a wonder the Squib didn’t catch you prowling the halls.”

 

It’s Harry. He’s having a nightmare. Shishreyu can’t wake him. She said it was a nightmare. He made the curtains impenetrable so I can’t get inside myself. I only knew something was wrong because I smelled fear.”

 

Blaise winced, tossing a book at Draco’s bed, “Drake! Wake up! Harry’s in danger.”

 

Draco woke up so fast, he practically fell out of bed. “What? Did that pathetic excuse for a Weasley try cursing him while his back was turned?”

 

George shook his head, “He’s having a nightmare. His curtains are impenetrable and Shishreyu can’t wake him.”

 

Draco cursed in four languages, as he summoned Dobby. “Harry’s in trouble.”

 

Dobby wrung his hands, “Dobby knows sir. Dobby been trying to wake Master Harry Potter for a hour. Nothing be working.”

 

Draco threw on a robe, “Take me to him.”

 

Dobby shook as he wrapped a long-fingered hand on Draco’s arm and disApparated.

 

George moved to pull the cloak back on, “I should head back.”

 

Blaise summoned his elf.

 

“Master be wanting Amry?”

 

Blaise pointed at George, “Take him back to Gryffindor Tower. He needs to be taken to the dorm room where Draco and Harry are.”

 

George was about to protest before he was Apparated away.

 

XoooooX

 

Draco was able to appear on Harry’s bed inside the red velvet curtains, Harry’s wards rose up and momentarily threatened to throw him but then relaxed. Draco slipped into the Gryffindor sheets, pulling Harry to his chest, kissing his neck, “Wake up love. Please wake up.”

 

Harry didn’t seem to hear him as he continued thrashing and screaming loud enough to raise the dead.

 

After three minutes of being subjected to Harry's screams, Draco finally sensed unfamiliar magic. He looked up at a hovering Dobby wringing his hands, “Get Remus and Papa. It’s okay if Dad comes too. Something is wrong.”

 

Pouting, Shishreyu was in agreement; she’d been saying that! She was so worried that she forgot that Draco couldn’t speak Parseltongue.

 

Draco kept trying to wake Harry but nothing was working, he was getting more and more worried. What was taking them so long?

 

XoooooX

 

Lucius had allowed Remus to sleep on a chaise day bed in the bedroom he shared with Severus. Remus woke with a start, his ears twitching. He sniffed, whispering “Dobby?” he’d recognised the scent of Harry's devoted house elf.

 

Dobby wrung his hands, “Dobby so sorry to disturb Master Remus. Master Harry Potter sir, he be in trouble. Master Draco be with him. Oh. Master Draco sent me to get you. Master Harry Potter not be waking.”

 

“Not waking from what?” Remus asked quietly.

 

“Nightmare!” Dobby blubbered.

 

Remus stormed out of bed, “Wake up!” his voice sharp as if he were yelling at students sleeping during lecture.

 

Lucius’ eyes snapped open, “What’s going on? Who is there?” he blinked sleepily only to see their former house elf Dobby who cared for Harry sobbing and wringing his hands up with Remus.

 

Severus woke at once sensing Lucius’ distress, he glanced from his Bondmate to Remus, “What’s wrong?”

 

“Harry’s having a nightmare and no one can wake him up. Not even Draco.”

 

Severus glanced at Dobby, “Wake up Ted Tonks. I’m not a Mind Healer but he may need help. We’ve been trying to help him recover from his abuse and other terrifying experiences. This could set his recovery back. I’ve really got to try to work on that potion.”

 

Lucius kissed his mate, “You’ll get it. You’re the best Potioneer of this century at least.”

 

“Dobby going now.”

 

The three adults stormed out of Severus’ room and tore out of his apartment, following Remus who instinctively took the shortest path.

 

XoooooX

 

George was pacing, unsure of how best to help. Harry being trapped in a nightmare had to be bad. Why wasn’t he waking up? Had someone entered him in the tournament to kill him? Gryffindor Tower should be safe! Why was it that the Slytherin Dungeons were safer? Harry was a lion after all...

 

Draco was getting more and more worried, why wasn’t Harry waking? What was wrong with him? He was his mate damn it! He was Veela, just because he hadn’t come into his inheritance shouldn’t mean he couldn’t help his mate. What was taking Dobby so long to retrieve his fathers and Harry’s guardian?

 

Shishreyu stared hard at her master, something was wrong. But what?

 

XoooooX

 

Dobby Apparated into Lavender Vale where he nearly crashed into Dora who was just coming in from spying on Dumbledore to shower and change.

 

“Who are you and what do you want?” Dora snapped her wand pressed to the unfamiliar elf’s throat.

 

“Lord Prince-Malfoy be sending me. Master Harry Potter in trouble.”

 

Dora stared at him. “Harry? Trouble? How?” Hogwarts was SUPPOSED to be safe but Harry was entered into the Triwizard tournament and two children were murdered by possibly mad power hungry Headmaster.

 

“Master Harry Potter slept in Tower. Having Nightmare. No one can wake Master Harry Potter. Dobby try. Master Draco try. Shishreyu try. Master Harry Potter in trouble.”

 

Dora removed her wand from the elf’s throat, “I’ll get dad.” Harry trapped in a nightmare that his mate couldn’t wake him from? She’d seen some of his worst memories and Snape’s, just what kind of nightmares could the poor boy be trapped in? She hurried to wake her dad. Throwing open their door, “Dad. Emergency. Hogwarts. Harry. Nightmare trapped.” Summing up the situation like giving a report to a superior after waking them up at an odd hour.

 

Ted was used to being called away at night because he was a Mind Healer.

 

Andromeda had been a Healer since when she was young, so she had been called in when massive injuries had occurred during the war despite having a specialty. “Nightmares? That poor child…”

 

Dora closed the door; letting her parents dress but began pacing. Was this a punishment by the Headmaster or by the nameless person who placed Harry’s name in the Goblet of Fire?

 

XoooooX

 

Severus had to strain his magic to break through Harry’s magical protection of his private space. The moment the wards crashed, it was like a magic bomb went off.

 

Four Gryffindor lions practically fell out of bed.

 

It didn’t help that Harry was screaming loud enough to wake the dead but nothing was understandable. How did Draco stand it? His son was holding Harry and trying to wake him still. Harry was so loud…

 

“What is that noise?” was Dean’s remark.

 

“What is the amazing bouncing ferret doing in the Tower?” Ron said glaring from the floor.

 

“Why is Harry screaming?” Seamus said rubbing his eyes.

 

“He sounds like mum.” Neville said quietly, it was true, Harry sounded like he was under the Cruciatus curse. Sometimes when he visited his mother, she fell asleep and would have nightmares where she screamed and thrashed like that while his father was always vacant and silent even when ‘sleeping.’

 

Severus glared, “I can’t wake him.”

 

“Do you know what’s causing him to scream so?” Remus asked worried.

 

Severus cast more charms at Harry’s violently thrashing, screaming form. “A variant of the nightmare curse that I’ve never seen.”

 

Remus cast a series of spells to make his own determination. “It’s Dark, very Dark. Cast by someone trying to obscure their magical signature.”

 

Lucius remembered something, “What was it that the seer said about us? Remus would gain that Severus’ potion ability? I would gain Severus’ ability to create new spells and Severus would be able to heal?” Why was his Veela trapped?

 

Remus remembered the Triad Charm; “The Triad Charm…” if someone powerful cast this whose spell Severus couldn’t break immediately, that meant Dumbledore. His second night in Hogwarts and Harry was already in danger.

 

Lucius nodded, “I can’t access my Healing but maybe Severus can.”

 

Ron was confused, why would a Death Eater being trying to help Harry? A Death Eater who could heal? That was something worth telling...

 

“Lucius can create a spell. With the Triad charm we might be able to break the curse.” Remus nodded.

 

Lucius closed his eyes, “Tell me what the spell signature looks like. How does it vary from the normal Nightmare Curse?”

 

Severus winced, “Its much Darker.”

 

Remus swallowed, “That’s not the nightmare curse…”

 

Severus cast another spell, Slytherin’s Bullocks! “Remus is right…it’s the Nights of Hell curse…”

 

“That’s one of Grindelwald’s.” Remus said staring at Severus. “It’s…supposed to be irreversible.”

 

“Has it been cast more than once I wonder? Three times makes one usually die. It’s only supposed to have a three-day limit. This…has been unbroken and unceasing for years.” Severus’ eyes widened, “The bed. Draco! Get him off the bed!”

 

Draco pulled the screaming, thrashing boy into his arms, tight to his chest and launched them both off the bed.

 

Harry’s eyes sprang open, his mouth mid-scream. He looked down to see Draco and burst into tears, burying his face in Draco's pajama shirt. “Draco…”

 

Draco pressed his lips to Harry’s forehead, rocking him, “You’re safe…” his magic threw itself behind him and the bed burst into flames. “I’d never let you be hurt or suffer. Damn it! It’s my job to protect you.” If he couldn’t wake Harry or soothe him, he deserved to suffer as well. He’d been forcing himself to endure Harry’s screams and thrashing, knowing that he’d incur bruises and a headache.

 

The burning bedstead didn’t spread fire anywhere else; it was merely destroying any magic.

 

Dumbledore, McGonagall and Flitch were heard noisily arguing against Andromeda, Ted and Dora about waking the Fourth Year boys.

 

George opened the dorm door, “We’ve been waiting for you.”

 

Ted scurried into the dormitory, casting diagnostic spells unique to his healing field.

 

“Really, there is nothing wrong with a few nightmares. It’s normal.” McGonagall continued to protest.

 

“Professor! That bed! It’s burning!” Filch cried out.

 

“Who did this?” Dumbledore glared, “Destruction of school property!”

 

Dora examined the flames, “I see no damage. Except to the spell cast on the bed.”

 

“A Dark Curse Auror Tonks.” Severus glowered, “At first I thought it was the nightmare curse but I was wrong. Remus and I discovered it was the Nights of Hell curse. Declared illegal over fifty years ago!”

 

“Oh please, where would someone learn a Dark Curse like that?” McGonagall scoffed. “You can’t cast spells like that in the castle.”

 

“Quite right Minerva. Severus please, I ask you not to speak falsehoods in front of the children.” Dumbledore said pleasantly.

 

“If my Bondmates claim that that this is the Nights of Hell curse created by Grindelwald, I believe them.” Lucius glared.

 

“Bondmates?” McGonagall blinked.

 

“Yes, it seems that Severus’ magic is too great for myself to ground. We have decided to take on a grounding mate.” Lucius said with a strained smile.

 

“A pity two Bondmates can’t change the fact that the last of the Prince line is barren. I would have thought that someone like your Lord Malfoy would prefer to be bonded to someone capable of having children.”

 

Remus growled, his wolf eager to rip Dumbledore to shreds. Severus’ infertility was that crazy bastard’s fault!

 

Lucius’ Veela fought against the magic that bound it, his mate’s honour was being impugned. He wanted to rip this insufferable man’s head off.

 

Every Chuvash’s ears winced, as Lucius’ Dark Mark seemed to scream.

 

Harry clung to Draco, “I don’t want to stay here. Don’t leave me.”

 

“I’m not leaving you.” Draco laced his fingers with Harry and brought the tiny Gryffindor’s hand to his lips, “I promise.”

 

Dumbledore sneered, “How do we know you didn’t cast that curse on Harry?”

 

Lucius snorted, “Because, I refused to let Draco be taught Dark spells. Unlike my father or his former relative Cygnus Black would have wanted, Draco was never instructed in the Unforgivables. I have taught him no Dark Arts.”

 

“You were a Death Eater Lucius; don’t try to tell me you wouldn’t teach your son Dark Spells. He spent enough time bragging about it.”

 

Draco snorted, “Oh please. I didn’t want to look bad in front of my House. I’m their Prince after all. I would never use those spells; I was uncomfortable with Moody showed them to us. I think Professor Lupin was a far better teacher then Moody. Moody is insane.”

 

Dumbledore sneered at Draco, “I heard you became a ferret.” clearly believing Draco disliked Professor Moody because he turned him into a ferret.

 

“I’ve always been drawn to Harry and he mostly ignored me. Being rude was the only way to get his attention. It was foolish and childish but I’m learning there are better ways to get his attention. I believe I owe one of my professors an apology.” Draco schooled his features into a mask to not react to the ferret comment. It was one of the most humiliating experiences of his life. He had been in the wrong and he deserved to be punished but not by becoming the ‘Amazing Bouncing Ferret.’ Despite appearances, Papa had punished him and Greg for attacking Harry, Weasley and Granger.

 

“Who is responsible for this wanton destruction of Hogwarts property?” McGonagall protested, the fire burning on Potter’s bed may not be destroying anything but some purported curse but she was still incensed about it.

 

“It is a product of a Veela’s rage at an attack on his mate, an unconscious uncontrolled burst of magic.” Lucius politely informed the insufferable woman.

 

“What proof is there of such?” Filch glared.

 

“The investigation of an Auror!” Dora snapped.

 

Filch stiffened and then shifted nervously.

 

“He is still destroying something...” Dumbledore said pompously, “for that he must be punished.”

 

“I will fight any punishment Dumbledore!” Lucius glared, “He has done no wrong or harm to Hogwarts property. For wanton unprovoked assault on two members of his own House Ronald Weasley has been inadequately punished. Detentions for the rest of term and being banned from the Yule Ball? I thought you were showcasing your Hogwarts as a welcoming place Dumbledore.”

 

“Your new pet Potter took great pleasure in impugning the reputation of this school and it’s Head the other day. You expect me to stand up for him?” Dumbledore asked incredulously.

 

“I expect you to stand by your charges when they are grievously assaulted. I would hope that a man of your reputation Dumbledore would be incensed that someone would place Potter’s name in the Goblet of Fire and would cast an extremely Dark and Illegal curse on him or at least his bed. Surely a boy of his marks and lack of proper instruction prior to Hogwarts would be incapable of discovering a way to bewitch an Ancient Artefact or discover the existence of such a dangerous curse to cast on himself.” Ted said stiffly.

 

Dumbledore laughed, “I have said it once and I’ll say it again, Potter suffers from Munchausen Syndrome. He requires constant care, preferably in the Janus Thickey ward. It is a pity that a Mind Healer of your experience and reputation has been deceived by this troubled boy.”

 

“You never once claimed he was unstable before until he started protesting the validity of his status as a Triwizard Champion.” Remus glared.

 

Ted said through gritted teeth, “My dear Professor Dumbledore, I reviewed Munchausen Syndrome recently. There is no way that Harry exhibits anything that could signify it. Munchausen syndrome is a type of factitious disorder or mental illness, in which a person repeatedly acts as if he or she has a physical or mental disorder when, in truth, he or she has caused the symptoms. Harry has done nothing of the sort. I have reviewed memories of his abuse and I find them clearly based on actual events. He does not have the knowledge to manipulate his memory. He didn’t even know the spell to copy or remove memories until I told it to him.”

 

“Ah yes, a fine actor isn’t he? He even fooled me for a while.” Dumbledore said with feigned sadness.

 

George snorted, “I suppose he paid to have bars put on his own window? Padlocked his precious Hedwig in her cage? Installed a tiny flap thing in his door? Locked his school things a cupboard under the stairs?”

 

Harry winced, he’d half-forgotten that Fred, George and Ron had broke him out.

 

“His relatives had written me to inform me he’d gotten violent.” Dumbledore said nonplussed and shaking his head sadly. “They were afraid he’d use magic to hurt them.”

 

Harry shook his head, “I’d be thrown out of Hogwarts. I can’t do that…it was bad enough that I blew up Aunt Marge. If Sirius hadn’t escaped, I would have been expelled. Uncle Vernon hasn’t forgiven me for that. He enjoys ‘punishing me for exposing his sister to my unnaturalness’.” He shook slightly, “I can’t help being born a wizard anymore then you can. They wouldn’t like me any better if I weren’t one.”

 

“Now Harry, you really should try not to tell such lies.  Where would you get any idea you were a Chuvash? Your ability to speak Parseltongue? I told you that was a result of your connection with Voldemort. I didn’t want to tell you this Harry, you see you’re a Horcrux like the diary. A vessel he secreted a part of his soul, you were an accident unlike the creation of the diary which I believe was the reason for poor Myrtle’s death. You boy are no Chuvash. I don’t even know where you would have heard of such Dark Creatures. Many foul things lurk in the Black Bloodline; you Harry Potter are not Black enough to be Chuvash. There have been no Chuvash born to the House of Black for Generations.”

 

Draco snorted, “You are misinformed Professor. Prior to this generation the last Black to come into a Chuvash inheritance was Phineas Nigellus’ older brother Sirius, current King of the Chuvash. The personal Seer of the Veela Queen told me that Harry was my mate.”

 

“A true seer has not been born to the Veela for generations. I would have known.” Dumbledore laughed.

 

“I am afraid you are far from well informed Headmaster.” Draco sneered, “At least three students were named Chuvash by that seer. We have found a near Chuvash and others who bear signs of Chuvash Blood.”

 

“Name a sign of Chuvash blood.” McGonagall snapped.

 

“Speaks and understands Parseltongue.” Draco laughed.

 

“Reflects back curses, hexes and jinxes.” Harry whispered.

 

George chuckled, “A natural flyer, understands Dragons, easily gains their confidence and abnormally fast healers.” Charlie had all the signs.

 

Neville spoke up, “If I can understand snakes, does that mean I have Chuvash Blood?”

 

Andromeda who had been seething at Dumbledore’s foolishness glanced at the boy, “You are a Longbottom? You have Frank’s face and Alice’s eyes. I remember them; we were only a year apart in school. If I remember correctly, Callidora Black was Bonded to Harfang Longbottom. Who is Harfang Longbottom to you young man? Isn’t that your father’s grandfather?”

 

Neville shook his head, “Yes Madam. Great uncle Algie always talks of him, his father-in-law Harfang. Uncle Algie was Bonded to my Aunt Cassandra.”

 

“Who is Callidora Black?” Draco asked curious.

 

“The elder sister of Lady Cedrella Weasley nee Black.”

 

George blinked, “That’s my grandmother. Sorry Neville, I had no idea we were cousins.”

 

Neville shrugged, “Me either.”

 

Ron choked, “I’m not related to that useless excuse for a wizard. He has the brains of a flobberworm.”

 

George slapped him, “It’s a pity I’m related to you. You’re an embarrassment to the family.”

 

Ron snickered, “You’re the embarrassment. How many OWLS did you get again? Three?”

 

“More then that fool. I just didn’t choose to publically do well enough to take all my courses for NEWTS. I hate this ‘Mandatory Education’. I’ve learned very little here other than how to cause mischief. If it weren’t for Quidditch Fred and I wouldn’t really be here. The soonest we can clear out, Fred and I will. I promise our exit will be as dramatic as we can make it.” George snarled, leaning into whisper in Parseltongue, “You are nothing to me. You are a miserable excuse for a wizard who I am ashamed to consider family. Don’t think you’re not going to be punished for cursing me earlier. You will suffer Ron. You will rue the day you made up enemies. You think our making your teddy bear a spider was bad? Oh trust me you’ll soon realize that was harmless.” He turned his back on Ron.

 

Neville, Shishreyu and Harry understood that entire promise while Severus caught half of it.

 

“Professor! I think George cursed me. Did you hear him? He spoke Parseltongue. He’s a Dark wizard!” Ron yelped and tried to get as far away as he could.

 

“Oh please. That was too long to be a curse and I wouldn’t bother casting a curse on you. You’re not worth the effort. I wish you and Granger joy. You deserve each other, you lousy pair of turncoats.” George said rolling his eyes.

 

“I say we let these boys sleep.” Severus said helping Harry and Draco up from the floor.

 

Harry nodded, “I don’t think I’ll be able to sleep up here comfortably again.” He shivered.

 

Draco hugged him; “I’m not keen on letting you out of my sight.”

 

Dobby appeared wringing his hands, “Dobby help Master Harry Potter sir?”

 

“Yes.” Draco replied, “Please move all of Harry’s things to my dormitory. He can sleep with me.”

 

“My dear boys, I believe that is quite out of the question.” Dumbledore protested.

 

“I beg your pardon?” Remus glared.

 

“Now Remus I can’t condone two unbetrothed or unengaged persons to share a bed, it shows poor morals. We wouldn’t want a repeat of such wanton behaviour as yours Severus.”  Dumbledore said pointedly.

 

“You mean Harry gets pregnant? Oh I doubt that. A young Chuvash knows better then to have sex with a non-Chuvash before coming into their inheritance. One never knows for sure if they are a Submissive or a Dominant, sex with a human for a submissive makes them infertile.” Severus snorted. “I doubt Remus would be alright if Harry had sex before he came into his inheritance. I would be upset with Draco if he did either.” It hurt to have his lost child rubbed in his face.

 

Ron looked green and ill, “I knew you were disgusting and creepy Snape. You got pregnant? While you were a student? Who would be interested in your greasy self?”

 

“I would.” Lucius and Remus snarled.

 

“So which of you knocked up Professor Greaseball? You must have really pathetic if only this dungeon bat would let you sleep with them. I thought you hated Snape, Professor Lupin. Was that a lie? How long have you been banging his skinny ass? I know Draco’s mother looked like she smelled something rotten but how could you leave a nice looking woman for someone who has burned and patched robes and frog guts under his nails? No wonder Draco’s so ugly and ferret-like. Is he really the son of a dungeon bat and some poncy ex-Death Eater?”

 

Lucius looked at Ron coldly, “That is so heinously untrue that it barely dignifies a response. Come on boys, we should leave.”

 

“Wait! Neither the Headmaster or I gave Harry permission to leave the tower.” McGonagall protested weakly.

 

“He doesn’t need it.” Remus seethed, “He has mine. I’m not leaving my charge up here another minute. Cursed bedsteads. I won’t be forgetting them.”

 

Neville shifted nervously, he wasn’t feeling safe either. “Can I…come too?”

 

Harry smiled at him, “If its alright with Draco.” There was something familiar about Neville and Luna said he could trust him.

 

“Longbottom go back to bed.” McGonagall glared.

 

Neville swallowed, “No. Go ahead and owl Gran I don’t care. I won’t spend another night in a Dorm where someone got cursed with something that made them scream like Mum. Gran will understand.” At least he hoped so…

 

Seamus sneaked out; his bed was closest to the door anyway. He wouldn’t spend the night in there either. He’d crash with Colin…

 

George pointed up towards his dormitory and Dean left too. George had every intention of going back down to the Dungeon with Draco and Harry.

 

McGonagall, Flitch and Dumbledore continued to make some type of protest but soon they were alone in the room with just Ron.

 

 

 

Chapter Text

Chapter 21

Dora was hiding in a corner behind one of Dumbledore's many tables crammed with silver instruments spying on him in the Headmaster's office since she slipped in early that morning. Her dislike of the man was growing, especially after the incident with Harry's nightmares brought on by curses. Her mother informed her that it had taken some time for Harry to finally settle down to sleep.

The silence was broken by the sharp crack of apparition; only house elves could Apparate into Hogwarts or any other location with anti-Apparation Wards in place.

"Elf! What are you doing here?" Dumbledore thundered.

The elf quaked before Dora's eyes, "Headmaster sir, my master he be ill. Please you must let him be with his beloved. Jocy hate seeing him in pain. Master near death."

Dumbledore's face contorted in fury, he held out his hand and the elf began to scream and writher in pain.

The elf stammered after collapsing when the spell broke. "Jocy sorry your eminence but Master needs his beloved. He weeps for his children, Jocy want to see Master's children. Jocy not understand why Master and his beloved can't be a family. Five sons…his father and brother would be happy the line continued. He grows weak. I beg you; let him see his beloved and his sons."

"Pah! Let him die. I should have killed him in the beginning. His brother dared rescue him from my care. If only they had died at the hands of Dolohov then your Master's beloved would have been free to accept his bond with another."

The elf hissed fiercely, "Once a soulbond has been formed no other bond is valid. Separation will eventually kill them both, the dominant's magic becomes weak while the submissive's health deteriorates. If Master dies, his beloved will soon follow."

Dumbledore raised his hand and the elf crashed into the fireplace, "Stupid foolish elf! You think your lies will faze me? A soulbond will destroy all I have worked for? Five sons? You think I truly care how many kids your master bore? If it were possible I would have killed every misbegotten bastard."

The elf's eyes hardened "Don't think us elves at the Aerie are unaware of what you do here. We know when one of the blood dies, you killed our master's grandson here in this office. He should not have been taken from Master; he was sickly and needed care. It is customary for the bearer to have input on the names of the children of our line. By stealing Master's children you have impugned our line's honour."

"Your line had no honour the moment it tried to join with your master's so-called beloved."

The elf glared, "Harm anyone dear to our master and you will see what protection the elves loyal to this ancient line are capable of. We have been biding our time but Master's life is fading and we won't allow him to die if we can prevent it."

Dumbledore snarled, "Get out. I'll come by the Aerie. I'll bring Poppy."

"Pomfrey? She couldn't diagnose Dragon Pox if there be an outbreak. She be an embarrassment to healers. You should have let master finish his training. Then perhaps, you wouldn't be so blind as to miss that one of your students was being abused."

"Miss it? I knew it. I knew everything that happened in that house." Dumbledore laughed wickedly

You monster, Dora thought.

"I'll be sure to pass that on. The other house elves will be delighted to know we were right and that you are a Dark Lord in the shadows."

There was a pop and the elf was gone.

A curse was cast at the elf's last position, but it was gone and the stone floor cracked beneath the curse.

Dora waited for the lunch bell to ring and Dumbledore to leave the Headmaster's Tower before flying out the tower window and casting a scrying charm to locate Lucius or at least Remus. She let out a sigh of relief when she found them both together. She flew into the window nearest the stairs to the dungeons and made herself invisible as she weaved through the throng of students. As she neared Snape's apartments she ended the spell making her animagus form invisible as well as rearranging her features to that of a non-descript Hufflepuff. She had learned that Hufflepuffs usually found themselves invisible and that often helped her surveillance. Her hair was mousy brown, she appeared to be wearing glasses and her eyes were grey. As she raised her hand to knock, she heard familiar steps behind her.

"May I help you?"

Dora turned and winked, "Professor Prince-Malfoy, I was glad I caught you. I have a few questions regarding today's lesson." Tapping out her name in a silent code used by potioneers to communicate, Dora wasn't a potioneer but she could fake it well enough to infiltrate the Potioneers Society of Great Britain.

Severus lifted an eyebrow, Dora Tonks? He replied in the same code, "Dora Tonks?"

Dora nodded, "May I come in?"

Severus opened the door and invited her inside.

Lucius was reviewing reports from his Wizengamot committees on Severus' desk while Remus was curled up with a thick book in front of the fire.

Lucius looked up sensing his mate, "Severus, is it lunch time already?"

Severus chuckled, "Yes, two classes of Double Potions with students who are mostly dunderheads who couldn't brew to save their own life much less anyone elses."

Lucius glance at the unfamiliar girl in time to watch her face rearrange itself into Dora Tonk's normal look with shocking purple hair. "Dora?"

"Yes uncle."

"No matter how much I see you do that it's unnerving." Lucius said shaking his head.

"I came with a disturbing report. Dumbledore is holding someone captive and has apparently stolen away their children."

Remus was shocked; his eyes had been opened to Dumbledore's nefarious deeds but kidnapping? "Who?"

"That I don't know. They have a contingent of house elves. One who called themselves Jocy was pleading for his master's beloved to be allowed to see him. His master was soulbonded to a wizard and Dumbledore separated them. Jocy's master had a father and a brother; he seems to be from an old family. He mentioned Protections that the elves knew that they could use if roused. Apparently, Dumbledore killed his master's first grandchild and they were furious. The elf threatened Dumbledore if he injured anyone else. Dumbledore wants the man dead. He kidnapped him prior but his brother rescued him only for them to be attacked by the Death Eater Dolohov. Apparently, he was near death but didn't die."

"A father and a brother?" Remus mused, "Two brothers attacked by Dolohov? The only brothers I know of that were attacked by Antonin Dolohov were the Prewetts, Fabian and Gideon."

"Was one of them studying to be a Healer? Jocy claimed he was good and should have been allowed to continue training."

"I believe that was Gideon," Remus began to pace, "Do you know where he might be?"

"Some place called Aerie." Dora replied.

Remus turned, "Imprisoned in his own home? That monster!"

"Jocy claimed his master is dying and if he dies the soulbond will kill his beloved. Apparently, being separated drains the dominant's magic and weakens the submissive's health. He's been forced to carry five sons to term; one was weak and should have remained with his master."

Severus staggered, stolen children? Five sons?

"The only person with at least five sons in this day and age is Arthur Weasley." Lucius said moving in the blink of an eye to steady his mate.

"I know Arthur was in your year Lucius, so he was what four years ahead of Severus and I? He graduated with your mother Andromeda, Dora. I don't remember him being weak. I remember he used to be an Auror but as soon as the war was over he was transferred to his current department. Could his magic have begun being weakened? We were told it was because he was believed by Fudge not to 'have a proper wizard's pride.' If he wasn't proud it was Molly's fault. Going from an Auror in training and firstborn son of a Wizengamot Lord to owner of the shack known as the Burrow had to dent his natural pride somewhat.

"You mean to say that Arthur Weasley was soulbonded to a man?" Severus was shocked.

"He did spend a lot of time in the company of the Prewett twins."

Severus' floo flashed green and Oliver stepped out, "Come quickly, Arthur collapsed. He came to visit Percy and was taking us to lunch. I summoned Healer Smythe and Healer Tonks. Percy was beside himself and nearly fainted, I just left them. Something is terribly wrong."

Severus whispered, "The soulbond…it's weakening." He knew what a soulbond was, Lucius and himself were nearly soulbonded when they had been magically separated.

Lucius touched his arm, "How do we heal it?"

"I'm not a healer but I believe they have to be taken to a safe place and lain in a bed together so their magic can heal them."

"How do we get to the Aerie?" Remus asked. "We don't have Prewett blood."

"Percy does," Oliver was a bit confused but that wasn't important right now was it?

Severus stared him down, "Was Percy sickly as a child?"

Oliver swallowed, "Yes…why?"

"That settles it. We need the sons closest in blood."

Remus nodded, "The twins."

Lucius glanced at Severus, "Blood scrying is difficult. Are you sure you're up to it?"

"Who do we need?" Remus was curious having little knowledge of such magic.

"As much of his blood as we can get. Oliver, is Bill still in Britain? I know Charlie is about the grounds because of the Tournament." Severus paced.

Oliver nodded, "Yes. Bill is staying with his grandfather; he hasn't been to The Burrow."

"Good. Inform him his father is ill. Have Arthur removed from the Ministry and taken straight to Weasley Hall. Tell the Healers he is suffering from a breaking soulbond. It is killing him. Send Bill here. I would ask for Percy but he must stay with his father. Percy is of his blood and his only tie to his beloved; Percy must hold Arthur to life. Perhaps Remus, you could ask Dobby to get Charlie? He should be with the dragons on the western edge of the forest."

"I don't understand." Oliver said.

Remus snapped, "Percy is Arthur's son but not by Molly. Arthur's true mate is dying or at least very ill, it is weakening Arthur. If we don't find Percy's bearer then both Percy's fathers will die. Now GO!" he summoned Dobby and sent him on his errand.

Oliver grabbed floo powder and jumped into the floo shouting, "Weasley Hall."

Severus left his apartments brooding; he had to find the twins. He made his way to Great Hall, making his way to Slytherin's table. He spied them, his robes flowing behind him like black wings. "Weasley!" he hissed in Parseltongue.

Harry, Viktor, Neville, Blaise and George's head snapped up in surprise hearing the familiar language.

"I want the twins. Come with me. We need to talk."

"But Snape," Fred began, he couldn’t understand anything, all he heard was hissing but he sensed his twin’s confusion.

"Its Prince-Malfoy remember? Something has happened to your father. We've already sent messengers to Charlie and Bill."

George winced and glanced at Fred, "We'll come." Grabbing his brother, and whispering in English, "We've got to go." Thinking at his twin hard, 'dad's been hurt. Got to help.'

Fred sensed George's panic and didn't argue, he did wonder what the fuss the hissing was about since he couldn't understand it.

"Quickly now, I wouldn't want to make you late for your next class." Severus said tapping his foot impatiently.

The twins had already bolted to their feet and followed him.

 

XoooooX

 

Bill and Charlie were pacing in Severus' apartments when the door opened and Severus entered with their twin brothers.

Fred was surprised, "What are you doing here?"

George stared, "Why aren't they with Dad?"

Severus snorted, "It was my idea to insist on your presence. Like I told you George, your father is ill and might die. There is only one way to save him and we need your help."

Bill was surprised; "I know you've helped Percy but why?"

"Because I know what it's like to be forcefully separated from the person you love. I know what it's like to have your child stolen." Severus said firmly. "This would work best with the blood of three or of seven but I have four. My apartments are specifically warded; they were warded by Slytherin himself." He summoned an ancient chalice, not Hufflepuff's but one belonging to the House of Prince. "This is a grey ritual, not Dark. It is also a Blood ritual, which is frowned upon by the Ministry. I cannot force you to participate without tainting its purpose but I can request it. This ritual can save your fathers."

"Fathers?" George stammered, "You mean,"

"Molly did not bear you, therefore none of you are her children."

Bill nodded, "That's why none of us bonded to her."

Charlie held out his hand, "I may not care for her but I love my father, I would do anything for him including shed my blood." He rolled up his sleeve carefully.

Remus blinked, his werewolf eyes blinking. Charlie had scales? His skin had a scale-like appearance, it reminded him of Sirius, the Chuvash king. When he spent enough time around the powerful ancient Chuvash, he’d seen through the Glamour. Why hadn't he noticed them yesterday? "You're a Chuvash!"

Charlie stiffened.

Bill blinked, "What?"

George had guessed as much but said nothing.

"No matter," Severus walked to the hearth, held his hand out to a silver casket, which opened at once. He withdrew a sharp silver knife that was etched with faint designs. "You must sit in a circle and hold hands. Bill to the North, Charlie to the East, Fred to the South and George in the West."

The four brothers arranged themselves as such.

Severus anointed their third eye with oil and held out the knife to Bill, "Slice your left palm from left to right and squeeze the blood into the chalice. Then pass the knife to Charlie who should slice his right. Then Fred's left and George's right."

Each brother sliced the proper hand and passed on the knife before squeezing blood into the goblet.

Severus took the knife with the blood of four brothers and used it to cast two circles. "Repeat these words, 'Blood of our blood we call to you. Blood of our blood we summon you. Come to us father. We name you: Gideon Lamorak Prewett!"

Nervously, the four brothers began. Their voices started low but the chanting increased in power. The air above the chalice crackled above them, then a thin window-like vision appeared. Of a man, with red hair or what might have once been red who resembled the twins strongly but seemed weak. His lips were parched, crackled and black with blood but they formed the name soundlessly of Arthur.

Severus whispered, "Chant louder. George. Don't break the circle but bring Charlie and Fred's hands together. Then you need to reach into the shadow, you have to pull him out. Only you can do this. Charlie, pull on your Chuvash. Use your magic to strengthen to circle.

Bill, Charlie and Fred were practically shouting as George reached into the vision, his hand seemed to loose its clarity and appeared blurred.

"Focus. Arthur's life depends on this. I doubt we can actually physically enter through the wards. This ritual is the only way. Bring him through."

The hand George was using was the one he cut; he reached out to thread his fingers with the man who looked like him, "Blood of our blood we call to you. Blood of our blood we summon you. Come to us father. We name you: Gideon Lamorak Prewett!" George spoke in unison with his older brothers but directed his voice into the portal or whatever it was.

The hand tightened around his and George pulled with all his might, focusing his magic. George fell backwards, a tall man weak and barely breathing landed on top of him and the window-like aperture slammed closed.

"Quick, that magic will echo. We must get him to Weasley Hall." Severus returned the magical implements to their homes and grabbed a scrap of parchment. He handed it to Charlie; "Focus of a part of your grandfather's home, then cast 'porto' on it. It will become a temporary portkey. The moment he speaks it. Grab it. "

George held onto the weak man tightly, he felt a connection to him. His blood and magic seemed to sing with his own but the reply from Gideon Prewett was weak, almost silent.

Charlie focused on his Grandfather's library, casting the spell.

Everyone reached for the parchment as the spell was spoken.

Immediately they were under the sensation of a portkey.

Crashing to the plush carpet.

The Weasley brothers recognized it at once; it was their grandfather's library.

Charlie who was the strongest and the tallest thanks to his Chuvash inheritance took Gideon in his arms. This was his true bearer, his Chuvash recognized him. He sniffed out his father's scent and led them there.

The Healers were tending to Percy and Arthur.

Arthur stirred faintly when his other four sons entered the room.

"Sweet Merlin! Is that Gideon?" Septimus gasped.

Cedrella who had softened because of her Gryffindor Bondmate felt her mask of Black superiority crumble, "Slytherin's Cauldron. He's still alive? Put him on the bed."

Charlie set his bearer down; following his Chuvash's instincts he placed Gideon's hand in his father's.

Arthur's hand squeezed Gideon's and both began to breathe easier.

Healer Smythe cast diagnostic spells, "Merlin. What is going on?"

Severus had finally entered and answered the Healer, "Forced separation was slowly killing them both. They were soulbonded in their youth. An Auror discovered quite by accident he was being held against his will. We managed to safely retrieve him and hoped we would arrive in time. Is the damage being healed?"

Healer Smythe nodded, "When Oliver Wood mentioned a breaking soulbond I was sure he was misinformed. Soulbonds are rare."

Severus paled, "No wonder he tried to separate Percy and Oliver. He was worried they might become soulbonded."

Oliver had being holding Percy's limp form in his arms, "I'm here, Percy, your dad will be okay."

Percy slowly awakened, "Ollie?"

"He's resting now." Percy blinked, before his eyes he watched a face that reminded him of the twins, the wrinkles were ironing out, colour slowly returned to his skin and the hair began turning red. They were familiar, who was that? "Who is this?"

"The man who bore us." Charlie said, "He was kidnapped and imprisoned. He somehow bore dad five sons; Bill, myself, Percy, Fred and George."

"What about Ronald and Ginevra?" Septimus asked.

"They share no blood with us." Charlie announced.

Septimus thundered, "She dare to sleep with another after bonding to my son and heir?"

"Be quiet Septimus." Cedrella said imperiously, "We both know that his soulbond with Gideon makes any other bond null and void. If not impossible, I doubt Arthur actually could sleep with her despite that woman's attempts to charm him into bed."

"Because she didn't bear us, would that explain why we felt nothing for her? No connection?" Bill asked.

Ted spoke up after determining despite the shock that Percy would recover. "Magical offspring who have not been adopted usually attach to their bearer and sire in some way. If for some reason one parent is not around, the child might attach to a parental figure that assumes that place. For example, young Malfoy attached to Professor Prince-Malfoy rather then to the bearer who birthed him."

"That is why I felt a connection with Gideon the moment I touched him." George said quietly.

"I think, because you are very much like him are you not?" Ted replied, "The younger twin, his son. You are also attracted to men as he is."

George flushed scarlet, "Yes. I am attracted to them but I haven't attempted to pursue a relationship." Fred's eyes laughed at him, he felt guilty for the statement because of his growing intimacy with Viktor Krum. The pleasurable feelings being in the Bulgarian Seeker, Durmstrang's Triwizard Champion's company gave him. He was too shy to really attempt to be extremely forward or flirtatious. But he'd never met a guy who could make him hard by speaking…

"Because you were afraid of how your family would take it. As you can see your father's true Bondmate is a man, I doubt he will object. You see how your grandfather accepts Oliver, how could he fail accept the man of your choice if he already accepts them?"

"If they are worthy of you and treat you well that is all we wish for, George." Cedrella said with a firm voice that allowed for no objections.

"I don't care if you like blokes." Bill shrugged, "all the more ladies for Fred and I."

"Bit odd being the same in everything but sexual tastes." Fred said with a frown, despite already having approved of Viktor.

Remus said from the doorway, "Your uncle Fabian was so attracted to girls that he slept with more girls then Padfoot and Padfoot was the biggest playboy in my year. Younger, older, he didn't care. He loved all women; any woman and few could resist him without massive effort. He was so attractive and attentive that most girls couldn't spend more then five minutes in his company without becoming willing bedmates."

Fred laughed, "So I am as like Fabian as Mu…Molly claims."

"Of course, you are born of his twin."

Septimus shifted nervously, "Can you tell how many children he attempted to bring to term?"

Healer Smythe cast a rare spell, "Six. But he lost one."

Bill whispered, "The miscarriage Mu…Molly claimed to have had after Percy but before the twins. She has no ties to us but that of an aunt. She faked pregnancies with us…she had to have been involved in this."

"As well as passing off Ronald and Ginevra as Arthur's children. I never understand how she managed to have a girl. All Weasleys are male…" Cedrella said contemptuously. "I never liked her, how Arthur could go from inseparable with Gideon to engaged to his sister I never quite understood. Gideon never came to the Bonding so we assumed there were bad feelings there. A mother knows her son and I swore Arthur loved Gideon. He would never have cheated on him."

"He hasn't." Charlie said firmly, "Those are my parents; I know them by scent and magic. I have no true memory of him," pointing at Gideon, "but a part of me recognizes him."

"As do I." His four other brothers muttered together.

"Let their magic recovers from the forced prolonged separation. I'll inform his superior Madam Bones that he is recovering at home. I'll also request that Molly be investigated," Healer Smythe began.

"No. As the Head of the Weasley Family, I'll be speaking to Madam Bones. I want that woman investigated for interference with a soulbond and kidnapping of children. I will bar her access to Arthur's vault and inform the Goblins that she is not Arthur's true mate. They will want her for embezzling. The only vault of her family's she should have had access too was the vault containing her dowry. The Ministry may have claimed the Prewett line was dead in the male line but the Goblins should have known it was not." Septimus interrupted. "Anything she has attempted to claim in the Prewett name through her sons will have to be reversed."

"Is that why you vote for her?" Bill asked.

"Molly claimed not to be interested in politics and lamented that her brothers weren't there to vote." Septimus was thoughtful.

"No. She said, she regretted that Fabian wasn't there to vote. She never mentions Gideon by name, only Fabian." Cedrella corrected.

"So clearly, she knew he was alive the whole time." Dora said shaking her head, "I'm glad I was where I was today."

There was a crack of Apparation.

Dora blinked.

Standing there wearing a clean but shabby pillowcase was the house elf Jocy.

"Master!" his big eyes widened, "Master and his beloved together? I thought that he'd taken him away." He looked at Bill and then each brother in turn, "You're here. Together." He started to cry, "Jocy never so happy." He spied Percy and wailed. "Jocy and other elves punished ourselves severely for allowing harm to come to you. We swore we protect you. Then. Then."

Percy saw the creature's scarred hands, "You knew? What he did to me?"

"Jocy know. Jocy and other elves taking care of master. He sensed danger approaching you, his children and was restless. Each one of us were charged to protect one of you. Master gave me you. Percival is terrible name. Master never agree to it. That bad man wanted to name you. He pick it, Percival Brian Weasley. He'd have preferred you were Percival Brian Dumbledore." Jocy spat.

Percy shivered, "He named me?" that man who murdered his child? He felt faint…

Dora was furious, "He dared name someone else's child? Percival? Arthurian name or not, Percival Dumbledore murdered children!"

Lucius glared at Dora wanting her to be quiet.

"Percival Dumbledore? I remember that name. I had no idea that was who Molly named Percy after. I thought it odd that she named the children and not Arthur." Septimus mused.

"She belittled Arthur all the time. Telling false stories about their romance, I finally washed my hands of her." Cedrella said stiffly.

"I didn't exactly disown Arthur but we decided that as long as he was legally bond to that woman he would never inherit the headship of the family or the Wizengamot seat. We were hoping that one of you might prove responsible enough for it." Septimus said with a shrug.

"What about Uncle Cadmus?" Bill asked; Uncle Bilius died when he was a boy and had no children that he knew of.

"His sons are younger and not as magically grounded as you are." Cedrella said through pursed lips.

"If Arthur had no children as Bilius did then he would have been passed over anyway. We were considering Bill." Septimus nodded.

"I wondered why so soon after graduation both William and Charles took jobs as far away as they did." Cedrella looked both curious and worried.

"Molly is overbearing and runs The Burrow like she is the Head of a Ministry Department and we work for her. She allows for no deviation from her plans for us. I wanted to continue playing Quidditch but when I became Head Boy she made me quit. I would have rather stayed Quidditch Captain but they did let me pass it on to Charlie. I missed being Keeper; I never wanted to be Head Boy. I had the grades for it and did it well but I didn't enjoy it as much as being Quidditch Captain. Molly wouldn't hear of me giving it up, she told me I was and I quote, 'being a fool and passing up a great opportunity’. She would not allow me to ruin my life because of some stupid game. I would have liked to play Keeper Seventh Year; then I might have had a shot at playing for the Cannons. They wouldn't even let me attend Tryouts because I didn't play my last year. I had Twelve N.E.W.T.s so I interned for Gringotts and got accepted into their Cursebreaking Department, which had me transferred to Egypt. I was pleased that I ended up being quite good at it." Bill said reluctantly.

"I didn't realize she meddled so much, I am sorry William. If you had told me I would have interceded." Septimus said apologetically.

"I never stood up to Molly until I woke up and realized I was a Chuvash on my 16th birthday. I kept it a secret, a bit difficult but I already knew I had an affinity for both Flying and Magical Creatures. I was determined to succeed at one or the other. I was glad my marks weren't high enough for me to earn Head Boy. I saw how miserable Bill was and just focused on the subjects that would get me accepted." Charlie said in his deep voice, not admitting his difficult with reading that hadn't resolved until he came into his inheritance. "I would never be able to be with a woman, I expected to be single forever considering that submissive males are considered rare."

"How did you get accepted by the Preserve Charles?" his grandmother asked.

"I proved I could understand the Dragons. I could from the start convince even the most unruly dragon to behave. They allow me closer then their human caretakers; I can actually treat their injuries or magically examine their eggs without being attacked with intent to kill." Charlie shrugged, he sometimes was injured but usually from playing hero and rescuing a colleague from an angry dragon.

"They know you're a Chuvash?"

"The Dragons do, and the current head of the Preserve Dragomir is one as well. His mate is a pretty female submissive. I have only been allowed to visit their home twice; he is very protective about his brood."

"It's the Black blood showing through." Cedrella said. "We claim to have Chuvash in our bloodline."

"That and Metamorphmagus." Dora laughed as she copied Charlie's face with some difficulty. He was far too tall to truly become, and the faint scale-like skin weren't something she could copy well.

"So you really are Andromeda's daughter I see." Cedrella said.

"Of course I am. The first Black to accept me was Sirius I, the brother of former Head Master Phineas Nigellus Black."

Cedrella gasped, "Sirius? Grand Uncle Sirius? Grandfather’s brother? I thought he was dead."

"He still lives." Lucius said politely, "He closed Black Manor to all Blacks when he found his mate. He has risen to be King of the Chuvash and has told Dumbledore to leave Harry alone for they share blood. I wonder why he doesn't know about Charlie."

"Chuvash aren't as cliquey as Veela." Charlie replied, "We claim deference to the Chuvash King but few meet him much less know him. I have never heard his name and had no idea that I was one of his descendants. I would gladly swear fealty to him if he is honourable."

"He is. He was furious at his descendants for forgetting their true heritage. He was going to strike my mother's sisters from the family. He was incredibly dismayed that they would submit themselves to follow He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named." Dora said with pride. "It was the first time I was proud to be a Black."

"I always wondered why Walburga did such a thing. Septimus was as pure-blooded as anyone and my parents weren't against our bonding but she was. I was never so ashamed to be Black as when I heard she blasted me off the Family Tree." Cedrella said stiffly, "I wouldn't have given Septimus up."

"Andromeda wouldn't give me up, not for threats or anything. I think she suspected you loved someone else or at least wouldn't be interested in her. She was surprised I dared pursue her when she was already betrothed from the cradle to you, Lucius." Ted said quietly.

"I wish you both joy and I beg pardon for any injury I caused or slight I gave while reluctantly Bonded to that woman." Lucius apologized.

"We should probably take our leave and let Arthur and Gideon rest." Cedrella fixed each person with a pointed stare that dared them to protest. She glanced at the elf, "I don't know exactly why you couldn't protect my grandson or my son's beloved but I expect you to remain in this room until they wake. When they do, you are summon only myself or my husband. If you fail I will see to it that your Master gives you clothes."

Jocy nodded wiping away his tears, "Jocy be very good elf. Jocy promise not to leave Hall. Jocy be telling no one where Master is. Master safe."

"Very well. We will see to it that no one outside this room discovers your master is here. As the unacknowledged Head of the Prewett family we owe him all duty." Cedrella said ask she herded her family and guests from the room.

"Thank you for doing what you could to save our son." Septimus said as his wife closed the door to their son's room.

Severus bowed, "I merely offered your grandsons the tools in which to accomplish this. It was they who saved him."

Bill shook his head; "We could never have done it without you."

His brothers agreed.

"We are in your debt Lord Prince." Septimus said, "If there is anything your family needs we will do our best to give our assistance."

"This will make up for my family's recent treatment of yours so our debts are cancelled. While I was Bonded to that woman I did your son ill and treated him far less then he deserved." While Ginevra was not Septimus' blood granddaughter he had put her in danger and threatened the Weasley Family's honour when he placed the Dark Artefact in Ginny's cauldron. That was a debt he intended to repay by helping or at least allowing his mate to help Arthur.

"It is as my Bondmate says. He deems our debts even but we would agree to an alliance." Severus added, "Despite Lucius' attempts to guide Fudge, he is a great fool. Though he was the only one to run against Crouch it would behove the British Wizarding world to have a stronger leader and an honourable one." A weak leader played into Dumbledore's hands, which was the last thing they needed.

Lucius nodded, "If we have the Malfoy, Prewett, Prince, Weasley, Black, Potter and Wood votes it might be enough to gain a vote of no-confidence and a discussion during this year's session of the Wizengamot."

"Many are calling for his head. Especially in light of the riot at the World Cup, we were embarrassed before the world. I might be able to convince Augusta to vote with us. She has nothing but disdain for Fudge." Septimus spoke as if he was already in line with their plan. Convincing Augusta might not be too hard; they'd always gotten on well. She might look old but losing her son and daughter-in-law had aged her considerably. Augusta was the widow of his nephew after all.

"It's settled then." Lucius glanced at Percy, "Any news about Crouch? Is he still ill?"

Percy shook his head, "I'm still trying to keep the Department running. I maybe the youngest there but no one is really stepping forward to fill in for him."

Septimus sighed, "Are you sure you can handle it?" he worried for his grandson, after finding out so recently what that dratted headmaster did to him and trying to repair his relationship with Oliver it was a lot to handle.

Percy smiled, "A wise leader is determined by the events that shape him. I maybe young but I'm doing my best. Who is on the Foreign Relationship Committee? I would prefer if someone from that body took over the Triwizard Championship. I have too much on my plate. Between refusing importation of flying carpets, not to mention ensuring cauldron imports and exports are of safe thickness."

Fred snickered, remembering their teasing from that summer.

Severus raised an eyebrow, "Sufficient thickness is important. A thin cauldron can ruin a potion as you two enterprising young men should know."

Fred swallowed chastised.

"I expect you to study harder." Severus said firmly. "I would think you would like to make Gideon proud of you rather then ashamed. He was a bit of a prankster himself as was your father. He wouldn't hound you about marks like Molly but he would be proud of you if you applied yourself. If you do well enough and still wish to not return next year I am sure your fathers and grandparents would agree to hear you out."

Fred and George looked at one another.

"As much of a bother that school is," Fred began.

"We have learned stuff that helped with product creation." George added.

"We'll actually start studying." Fred said pleasantly, though they had already sort of decided it would be smart to set an example for Mal and Greg. Fred wondered briefly if Mal might not be a good match for Greg if she was blood adopted by a non-Squib. Pansy was a very disagreeable person.

"Yeah, have to set a good example for Harry. Ron is just a lost cause. He's saying terrible things about Harry still. Any objections to a few pranks to teach him a lesson?" George asked.

"Since he is no blood of mine I don't." Cedrella said walking off.

"Just no permanent injuries you have to explain to Arthur." Septimus said shrugging.

"We better get the twins back to school before anyone really notices they are missing." Remus spoke from his place at the fringe of the group.

"Yes, it's getting late and I still have to teach." Severus nodded, "Come boys, back to the grindstone." Besides, leaving Harry for too long was disconcerting considering the curse Harry returned to Gryffindor Tower to be subjected too.

 

 

Chapter Text

Chapter 22-

 

Molly Weasley stormed out of Dumbledore’s floo, “Arthur hasn’t been home in days. I just heard from Amos Diggory’s wife Sarah that my husband had taken ill at work on Monday. Why was I not informed? I am his Bondmate, his wife!  I heard he took ill at the Ministry and was taken to Weasley Hall. The Wards won’t let me throw and their floo is closed to the Burrow. I demand to know what is going on! My personal elf informed me that not only is That Person missing so is one of the other Prewett elves. The other elves aren’t talking. I was visited by Gringotts goblins this morning Albus. You promised this wouldn’t happen.”

 

“Molly, you came to me saying you would do anything you could to be Mrs. Arthur Weasley. We tried Love potions, and memory modification but that Weasley is so stubborn. He wouldn’t sleep with you. We found out Gideon was pregnant and we spirited him away after forging a letter saying he was through with Arthur. You spent the night in Arthur’s bed immediately and then began claiming you were pregnant. Being an honourable sort Arthur agreed to Bond to you but his heart was never in it. We tried numerous methods to entice him into your bed sexually but he could not so we had to just use Gideon as a substitute. Arthur would sleep with him, Gideon would conceive and then you would take the child and raise as yours.”

 

“Like I ever wanted to raise five of my worthless excuse for a brother’s brats. Arthur should have been mine from the start. Gideon was unnatural, what Dark magic did he use to trap Arthur in a soulbond? I blame that person for the death of Fabian. If Gideon were never born then I would have truly been with Arthur. Fabian wouldn’t have been killed trying to whisk Gideon away.”

 

Molly was clearly very involved with this whole business; Dora had wondered how much she possibly knew and now she was suspicious that in the case of her brother Molly knew everything.

 

“Any chance of them discovering Ginny’s true parentage?” Molly asked.

 

“Anyone with sense knows that Weasleys have no females. I told you it was utterly foolish.”

 

“I owe you a great deal Albus. I wanted a little girl.” Molly said with a far-away slightly mad looking smile.

 

“To seduce and Bond to the Chosen One. There is a complication I didn’t see, his Chuvash inheritance and his apparent mate Malfoy.” Albus sneered at her.

 

“We can’t have our Saviour Bonded to the son of a Death Eater. Besides, it’s disgusting.”

 

“It’s not so simple Molly, this Malfoy is Veela, a creature of light.” Albus shook his head, “I’ve noticed that George is getting awfully close to Viktor Krum. Percy and Oliver have been seen in public together recently.”

 

“That worthless Quidditch obsessed git! You told him to stay away from my son! How dare he impose himself and muddle up Percy’s future. He raped my Percy once already and Imperioed him into thinking he was liking it.  Percy was supposed to be Bonding to former Head Girl Penelope Clearwater. Bill needs to settle down with a nice quiet girl, and then perhaps he would find a more reasonable career then Curse-breaking. I didn’t bribe you to make him Head Boy for him to waste his future in some backwards country like Egypt. As for Charlie, that boy makes me uneasy. He had an unhealthy attachment to Quidditch and that useless oaf Hagrid. I can’t believe you let him be accepted to that stupid dragon preserve.”

 

“I had no say in whether or not Charlie was accepted there. I cautioned Minerva and Professor Kettleburn about giving him a glowing letter of introduction. I felt that it would be a poor fit. How was I supposed to know that he had natural talent for it?”  Dumbledore protested.

 

“If he had been my son, he would never have gone into such a dangerous field of study. Dragons! Curse Breaking! At least Percy had the sense to see that to become Minster for Magic that he needed some experience in International Relations. Crouch may have his faults but he is a stickler for rules and a very good Head of Department.” Molly grumbled.

 

“Especially since Crouch is ill and the only person trying to keep the department running is Percy. You were right to bribe me to make him Prefect and Head Boy. He wasn’t as social as Bill and positively interacted little with his House. He couldn’t even get his younger brothers to study or get decent Marks.”

 

Molly pouted, “I was a prefect, but Fred and George are an embarrassment. If only I could convince Arthur to disown them. Their OWLS were so pathetic they weren’t even worth the parchment they were printed on. If they spent half the time they waste on that useless junk they are forever inventing they’d get high enough marks to continue more then three or four subjects a piece.”

 

Dumbledore thought that that ‘useless junk’ was quite clever but if they put their wits to more appropriate things they might have made good choices for his 'Order’.

 

“How do we find that person?” Molly asked arms crossed.

 

“Can’t your elf track him?” Dumbledore snapped exasperated.

 

Molly snorted, “Dilly claims she can’t.

 

“Maybe we’ll be lucky and they are both dead. With the rate Arthur’s magic was depleting he would have been useless to me in less then two years. Soulbounding! Pah! The most ludicrous accidental magic there is.”

 

Molly frowned, “Percy has seemed overly morose since you separated him from Oliver. Are you sure they weren’t soulbonded?”

 

Dumbledore snorted, “No but your precious Percy was almost an unwed teen mother like that pathetic excuse for a Death Eater Severus Snape. Leave me. I’ll send you a message if I discover anything. I’ll see if I can get anything out of the Goblins.”

 

When Molly was gone Dumbledore poured himself a Firewhiskey and sneered, “The reason the Death Eaters were a motley crew of misfits is because I hand picked each and everyone of them. Well…” Dumbledore frowned, “I vetted which would join up. I knew that Barty Jr. would, as well as Pettigrew. I offered to be James and Lily’s Secret Keeper by then Lily didn’t trust me.”

 

Dora was shocked; one of the Potters hadn’t trusted Dumbledore? She knew that her old mentor Moody had been in something called ‘the Order of the Phoenix’. Rumour had it Shacklebolt had been too…how far could she trust them? At least Scrimgour didn’t trust Dumbledore, the Head Auror was rumoured to be a Vampire but no evidence that was reliable was ever brought forward. Not that it really mattered as long as he didn’t lose control and attack people leaving a trail of bodies.

 

Dumbledore scowled, “She kept trying to make contact with Snape, stupid woman. James was such an easy boy to manipulate just like his son used to be. He wanted Sirius; it was I who convinced Sirius to suggest Peter. By implying that Remus had joined a pack that had sided with the Dark Lord, I didn’t inform the Auror that Remus did this under my orders. That foolish werewolf let one in and they worship you. He would have done anything I asked. I knew Peter had joined up, everyone who went to school with the Marauders, especially Slytherins knew he was the weak link in the chain. It wouldn’t have done to have that group made up of anyone else.”

 

What hadn’t Dumbledore meddled with?

 

“Ah yes Sirius, the snake in the lion’s den. I hoped he would turn out to be a natural spy but he was a Black reject. Potter was so malleable. I picked Lily for him and nudged him to her. After all, it wouldn’t take much to make him hate Severus. A lack of punishment for Slytherin-baiting or more specifically Severus-baiting encouraged it to continue. I wonder if Lucius was that much of a fool in school for Severus? I expected Lucius would be made to join by his father. Then Severus who worshiped the ground Lucius walked on would join. Severus was too talented a wizard to expel or to allow to be anything less then a criminal. Making sure he ended up falling among the Death Eaters was so simple I did nothing.”

 

“Of course Bellatrix would join taking her husband, youngest sister and cousin. Bellatrix was a bit mad from the start. If anyone had mentioned the Dark Lord was half Muggle she would never have joined. She half-convinced herself she was in love with him.” Dumbledore laughed maniacally at the thought of blood purist Bellatrix Lestrange in love or at least in lust with a ‘dirty Halfblood’…

 

“Molly was easy to convince that Arthur was hers. She was righteously indignant that her brother stole her Arthur. Anyone could tell that Arthur was besotted with Gideon. Fabian guessed it. I didn’t have Gideon there at the Aerie at first. Gideon was stolen out of my place in Godric’s Hollow. I hate that place; I have used it often to hide people. First Gideon and then James, Lily and Harry. I can’t believe James was foolish enough to move out of Laude Abbey. The Abbey was magically a more defensible place, his father died abruptly and never explained all the wards.” Dumbledore laughed manically. “Activating the Blood ward would have prevented access to any without Potter blood. Of course James was ignorant of this. We lost the McKinnons because they refused to side with me. Really, what use or manner would Death Eaters have for reducing a body to bits? The wonders of Muggle land mines. I don’t know what happened to Caradoc Dearborn, but he disappeared from my ranks too.”

 

Everything Dora had been told about the Order and the war was being exposed as lies.

 

“Of course most of the Bones family ended up dying, only the youngest brother and Amelia left. The youngest brother was in America studying at one of their schools. Amelia’ll have to go soon. She’s too narrow minded, besides she sided with Harry. The Longbottoms never joined the Order; they sided with the Ministry through out the entire war. I was ever so pleased when I found out that Bellatrix dealt with them for me. It was so easy to convince Barty Sr. to be brutal with most of the Death Eaters, especially his son. Barty Jr. was just a little actor,” he laughed, “Casting that spell was the best thing I ever did. Karkaroff broke so easy. I was surprised that Lucius wasn’t as loyal as I expected. Damnable Veela Blood in the Malfoy line. Potter a Chuvash? Damn the Blacks too. Insufferable goody goodies when I was young. I was ever so pleased when they took a Dark turn. Always pure had nothing to do with blood purity. It was always pure of motive, the Blacks always advocated the Rede: ‘If what thou harm none, do what thou wilt’. Stuff and nonsense.”

 

Memories like this would ruin Dumbledore…Dora was overwhelmed.  Abandoning Harry with Muggles was bad enough, possibly knowing something about the Nights of Hell curse and lying about Harry suffering from that mental disorder was bad enough but this was worse then she’d ever guessed…

 

Dora was stuck listening to Dumbledore rant until near dinnertime. Grateful for his absence she flew out the window and a far enough distance away to shift into that ‘invisible’ Hufflepuff girl and go in search of Lucius to make a report.

 

XoooooX

 

Lucius stepped into Severus’ apartment after hours in a Wizengamot committee meeting. He’d had to make a report as well as attempt to track down a member of the International Relations Committee to ask them to sit in for Crouch as a judge. He still hadn’t been able to find one that wasn’t ‘too busy’. Seriously, This was the Triwizard Tournament. Why was no one interested in judging?

 

Remus was reading Severus’ potions journals since they were fourth years to when Harry was born. The man was brilliant, why wasn’t his work universally acclaimed? He was barely beginning to understand the depths of the man’s genius much less his notes. His gift from their triad would be some measure of his mate’s brewing talent. Considering he had none, any share would be appreciated. He wouldn’t attempt to brew unless Severus was satisfied he was no longer a ‘dunderhead’ at brewing. He glanced up as Lucius exited the floo, he was about to ask about his day but the expression warned him not to. He nodded, “Treca brought tea. It should be still warm. She should be along with dinner soon.”

 

“Where is Severus?”

 

“Class I believe. As Head of House I believe he will have to be present during the meal.”

 

Lucius grumbled, “If I didn’t have my sights set on making him Headmaster one day I would have him resign and we can educate the boys at home. It was not Narcissa who didn’t want Draco to go away to Durmstrang it was Severus. He’s doted on that boy since he was born. Tutoring him, teaching him to brew the moment he showed promise. Severus gifted Draco with his own lab; he took to it like a Snidget does to flying. Veelas make excellent brewers because they are deeply connected to magic, they also can locate rare ingredients by sight, taste and smell. He was looking forward to guiding his education here as well.”

 

Remus nodded, “I wanted to take Harry in. I was suspicious that I had been named a secondary guardian. The Headmaster convinced me that though I was a spy, too many werewolves fought with the Dark Lord and fear was running high. Historically we are considered Dark Creatures and the Ministry would not grant me custody until things calmed down. I pleaded with him yearly on Harry’s birthday to let me visit. I was told it would upset Harry; he would be frightened of me because he didn’t remember his uncle Moony. I thought Harry was being raised decent people. It wasn’t until I met Harry that I realized he was with Petunia. That woman was never okay, always a bit crazy. Hated Lily. Called her a little freak. She once said babies like her were like unwanted kittens and puppies, that they should be drowned at birth.”

 

There was a knock at the door.

 

“It’s me.” Came a muffled voice.

 

“Come in.” Lucius called out.

 

Dora stepped into shutting the door, “I know I made a report on Monday but…” her features rearranging into her normal appearance.

 

Remus held out a bar of Honeydukes chocolate and poured her a cup of tea.

 

Dora drained the teacup in one gulp and woofed down half the chocolate bar. She sighed, “I’ve been cooped up in that claustrophobic office for hours listen to him rant.”

 

“Take your time Dora.” Lucius said soothingly though he was very curious to know what sent her back down here.

 

“Molly showed up. She’d heard from Cedric’s mother that Arthur took ill at the Ministry. She was told he was taken to Weasley Hall. The wards wouldn’t allow her passage; their floo is closed to The Burrow. She has a personal House Elf who told her that Gideon and an elf were missing. Goblins visited her at The Burrow this morning.”

 

“Septimus works faster. What did the old fool say?” Lucius said leaning back in his chair listening.

 

“That Dumbledore facilitated Molly’s desire to be Mrs. Arthur Weasley using love potions and memory modification. Nothing worked really because Arthur wouldn’t have sex with her. She slept in his bed naked and then claimed to be pregnant. He agreed to be Bonded because he didn’t consciously remember Gideon. They didn’t realize they were soulbonded at first. Dumbledore called it, ‘The most ludicrous accidental magic there is.’ Molly wished her brother was never born so Arthur would have been her from the beginning.”

 

Dora sagged, “Molly called Bill, Charlie, Percy, Fred and George, ‘my worthless excuse for a brother’s brats’. Also claimed Gideon used some type of Dark Magic to trap Arthur in a soulbond and that Arthur was meant to be hers. Something Dumbledore claimed responsibility for not only helping her but also encouraging her. He told Molly that Percy and Oliver were seen in public together. Molly’s response was to accuse Oliver of raping Percy and Imperioing him into thinking he liked it. Also that George is spending too much time with Viktor.”

 

Lucius snorted, “Oliver would never hurt Percy.”

 

“Molly Prewett admitted to bribing Dumbledore into choosing Bill and Percy as Head Boys. Dumbledore tried to convince Professor McGonagall and Professor Kettleburn to write less then glowing letters of reference to any of their choices. Molly didn’t want them to get jobs out of Britain. Molly called Hagrid that stupid oaf, blamed him for Charlie’s obsession with Dragons…”

 

“Wow, I never knew she was that bad. She always looked down her nose at me, because I was officially half blood. I was surprised that she allowed Hermione to visit the Burrow summers.” Remus said shaking his head.

 

“She admitted that Arthur wasn’t Ginerva and Ron’s father. She wanted a daughter to be bonded to Harry. She was furious that Harry was supposed to be with Draco. That their Saviour couldn’t be Bonded to the son of a Death Eater. He was not happy that the Black and Malfoy bloodlines were polluted with Chuvash and Veela blood. He said that Death Eaters had nothing to do with an Order member being found in pieces. He said something about a Muggle land mine- whatever that is, being responsible. He had no idea what happened to Caradoc Dearborn. He claimed that the McKinnons deserved what they got for not siding with Dumbledore. HE admitted to kidnapping Gideon. He hide him in the house his mother and sister died in before he loaned it to the Potters. Lily had started distrusting him and trying to contact Severus. He manipulated Slytherins into joining He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named by isolating them from the rest of Hogwarts. He was so angry with Madam Bones that he thinks she ought to die. He was upset not every member of the Bones family died. He said that attacking the Longbottoms was the best thing Death Eaters ever did. He implied to Sirius your friend that you had betrayed them by joining a pack. He made sure not only did Peter become a Death Eater but that Barty Jr. did. He encouraged Crouch to make an example of every Death Eater they caught. I wonder how many Death Eaters were trapped in webs Dumbledore designed.”

 

“The Dark Lord is Dark but I’m not sure whether he entered into it of his own free will now.” Lucius mused.

 

“The Headmaster claimed Bellatrix was mad when she entered Hogwarts. He had hoped that your friend Sirius would prove to be a natural spy but he was too honourable. James was manipulated and his father died before he could explain much about the wards on their house. Dumbledore convinced James that his own home was safer then the ancient dwelling of the Potters Laude Abbey. They had blood wards on the Abbey. He was an Auror, why did he trust what Dumbledore said?” Dora cursed.

 

Remus shrugged, “We all did, we thought he was our leader. He was the one person He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named was supposed to be afraid of. He was offered the post of Minister for Magic three times and refused. He said he was content melding the minds of the next generation. Oh Merlin, he was serious…” the implication of the significence of his words striking him.

 

“I should say. He allowed the sport Slytherin-baiting to isolate your House so Slytherins would band together and join the Death Eater ranks. I think he’s trying to weed out the people and lines he doesn’t want to continue. By eliminating persons and lines of those he disliked, distrusted or feared he was solidifying himself a band loyal followers. He allowed Hagrid to be expelled but arranged his loyalty by having him hired on a Gamekeeper and later Care of Magical Creatures Professor. He hired Pomfrey who we know is useless. Look at Flitch; he also worships the ground Dumbledore walks on because no one else will hire him because he’s a squib. He fills Hogwarts with people who owe him. No one would hire Snape because he was rumoured to be a Death Eater, Dumbledore did. Then he tried to make it seem like he turned him into his spy. Ms. Pince is so disagreeable that no one would want her around. He hired useless Defense Teachers when he knew He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named was still out there. He no offence meant Remus, invited a werewolf to attend knowing it was dangerous but hopefully making a lifetime ally.”

 

Remus quite understandably winced, “You have a point.” It was embarrassing to know how Dumbledore abused his gratefulness. “I never joined a pack. I was ‘too wizard’ for them. They dislike wizards, they haven’t organized themselves in quite the manner the Veela and Chuvash have which is quite the pity. Most follow the wolf that sired me out of fear. He is very much a wolf, not so much a man. He has enemies amoung both wolves and Wizarding folk alike.”

 

“As crude as it is to say, he should be put down like the dog he is.” Lucius said gruffly. “Disliked him. Honorary Death Eater or no if anyone was more responsible for creating mistrust between our two sides it was him. For all his faults, the Dark Lord did what the Ministry could not; he had Dragons, Chuvash, Werewolves, giants, goblins, some vampires and wizards working together in a common cause. The Ministry is corrupt yet, instead of trying to reform it from the inside they sought to overthrow it and start again.”

 

“What were the Death Eaters purposes?” Dora was curious having never had the opportunity to ask one before.

 

“They saw the damage that Muggleborns were having on our society. This distrust of non-Human races is a Muggle view.” Lucius began slowly, “The Dark Lord never ordered mass Muggle killings in my hearing. Perhaps, I was not as high in his esteem as my father wanted. Being born Veela was a handicap in some ways, especially with the Dark Mark locking away much of my Magic. They wanted to separate ourselves from Muggles completely, not like Grindelwald who wished to enslave them. The Dark Lord was against Muggles raising Wizarding children. He grew up unloved and unwanted in a Muggle orphanage; with no one to teach him appropriate behaviour so he used his magic to get what he wanted and to punish those who humiliated him. He wanted to live and study amoung his own kind but he was refused. Summer after summer until graduation from Hogwarts he was sent to live amoung Muggles. He was right, he was superior to them as we all are for we can do what they cannot. In a way they are right to fear us, just as we in our own way fear them. Muggleborns bring strange and unwelcome ideas that threaten to topple the culture we love; they have no love for non-humans only fear, they condemn us for being Bonded to those of the same gender, they often learn what they can from us and then return to the world from which they first came.”

 

“I see, their methods may have been wrong but I can understand their point.” Dora said thoughtfully, “I’ve overheard the school laughing about S.P.E.W. and House Elves refusing to clean the Tower well because of Granger’s so-called hats.”

 

“She has dangerous ideas.” Lucius nodded, “A mass freeing of House Elves would leave them bereft. They long ago decided they desired to serve; thus they tied themselves to families magically and have given good service. Most forget that while a Master has the right to free them they also have the right to refuse to refuse to serve. I was displeased to have been tricked into having freed the woman’s personal elf, mostly because she would see fit to punish me. Something my Veela abhorred.”

 

Dora relaxed in her chair, “I am pleased that that Molly Prewett is suffering humiliations galore. Perhaps, I should drop in on Ms. Skeeter and give her a tip. Something like, ‘Supposed Bondmate of the firstborn of Lord Weasley, Molly Prewett is said to be accused to conspiracy to kidnap, kidnapping, bribery, kidnap, filling false birth records with the Ministry and interfering with a soulbond. She is also under investigation by the Gringotts goblins for embezzlement.’”

 

Remus snickered, “Do it. By airing Molly’s dirty laundry to the Wizarding World we embarrass Dumbledore. There will be an outcry to have her arrested and questioned regarding co-conspirators.”

 

“I recommend you go pass on this juicy story to Ms. Skeeter. Tell her to get a good picture of The Burrow. I wonder why a heiress and the firstborn of a Wizengamot Lord would choose to live in a shack?” Lucius mused, “As the purported sole heir to the Prewett family she could have held in trust the Prewett fortune for her children. Yet instead she used said fortune to bribe the old fool.”

 

“I wonder…what the true meaning behind the prophecy is. I wonder, what if it never was meant to be regarding He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named?” Remus said almost to himself. “What if James and Lily were killed for nothing?”

 

“Never for nothing,” Lucius admitted sadly, “They in the end proved the Dark Lord right that Muggles cannot be trusted to raise a Magical child. Look how much damage they’ve done to children like the Dark Lord, Severus and Harry.”

 

“I’m not sure how they would feel about becoming poster children for the Death Eaters.” Remus hated to think that he was finally coming to understand his former enemies. His enemy was now the supposedly the most powerful wizard in the world, while his allies were less dangerous then he ever dared hope.

 

Was the Wizarding War a lie? Good people had died it was true but had the Dark Lord ordered their deaths or had Dumbledore? That was the question of the century…

 

Dora left to leave an ‘anonymous’ source for the beginning of a story that might make Skeeter’s career.

 

 

Chapter Text

Chapter 23-

 

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?

 

XoooooX

 

The First Task

 

They headed out following the crowd.

 

Draco held Harry’s hand as they made their way towards a not quite so 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 excited, “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 age 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, “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. 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.

 

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.

 

Bagman stared.

 

Severus gasped, “Barty 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.” The glowing shimmering, so pale she was almost translucent 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?”

 

“Fae.”

 

“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 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.

 

XoooooX

 

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 with me. 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 is 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. 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 translated the exchange for the rest of the family.

 

Septimus nodded, “If you 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 half-blood 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 father 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.

 

 

 

Chapter Text

Chapter 23B

Dora had delivered her prisoner Bartimus Crouch Jr. to the Ministry cells and went to return to Hogwarts after returning home for her Auror’s robes and her father.

 

She still knew her way to the Defense classroom but had to use a point me spell to find the professor’s apartments.

 

She opened the door and found Severus had spun around and had a wand at her throat. “I’ll overlook that.”

 

“My apologies Dora.” Severus bowed his head regally, “Can’t be too careful now. Especially with you know who on the warpath.”

 

“How is Moody?” Dora asked.

 

“He has pneumonia. Most likely wouldn’t have lasted too much longer in that dreary pit.” Smythe replied. “He has an infection where his magical eye was supposed to be. Have to treat that before he can have it back. He is truly muttering things about blood on his hands. He shows signs of being cast into magical sleep as well as being under the imperious but that isn’t really my field. I leave mental magic up to my esteemed colleague. I’m leaving instructions for potent potions to fight his infections. I do hope the Ministry sees fit to give them to him. I can’t guarantee without treatment from both myself and Tonks that he will be well enough to answer questions. In particular his second potion will if veritaserum is taken while he is using that potion will turn the truth potion into a deadly poison. I hope your supervisors heed my warnings.” The Healer left after handing Severus the prescription.

 

McGonagall was sobbing, holding Moody’s dirty shaggy grey head in her lap. It was more emotion then Dora had ever seen her express.

 

Moody looked less imposing then she remembered, he was unconscious and missing his wooden leg and magical blue eye. In short, he looked vulnerable.

 

Ted stepped forward, casting a variety of spells. “He’s been subjected to mental magic over a long period not just recently, decades. He has many memory blocks that are disintegrating. True the caster was talented but too many can destroy a great mind. I doubt he will end up in Azkaban no matter his crimes. He will probably end up in the Janus Thickey ward in St. Mungos.”

 

McGonagall sobbed harder, “Who could have done this? He was a great Auror, devoted to tracking down Dark Wizards…murdering innocents…he would never…could never…”

 

“The strength of his mind and conscience would have no bearing if the caster was stronger.” Ted tried to soothe her, “It might not be his fault but that is up to the Aurors or the Council of Magical Law to decide.”

 

“Dad, in his condition would it be safe to imprison him at the Ministry?” Dora was curious.

 

“The cells are too drafty and it would make his pneumonia worse I think. Perhaps, the Janus Thickey ward would be prudent. He would have the best care there for both mental and physical maladies.” Ted said shaking his head.

 

“We should take him there then. I’ll inform Scrimgour. He won’t be pleased but having Moody die in a Ministry cell would be embarrassing. I’ll insist on having Auror guards to appease him. It was lucky I was there to take Crouch into custody. There will be an investigation as to how he managed to escape Azkaban.” Dora said smirking.

 

“Most fortunate.” Lucius chuckled from his place guarding the door after arriving with Healer Smythe. “How shall you be transporting Moody?”

 

“Perhaps, through his floo. It would be faster.” Though not a big man, Ted could carry most patients without lightening charms. “Deputy Headmistress is welcome,”

 

McGonagall pulled out a handkerchief and wiped her tears, “Minerva, please. We may not be Bonded anymore but he is still important to me.”

 

Lucius was perversely pleased, Deputy Headmistress she maybe but having a former Bondmate who would no doubt prove to be a pawn of Dumbledore who probably helped kidnap Gideon once and many other crimes yet to come to light.   Her candidacy for Headmistress would be badly damaged by her association with Moody. His Severus had a better chance now. Lucius wasn’t sure after removing Dumbledore that Severus would immediately be a viable choice. However, Professor Flitwick who he remembered from his days as a student might not be a poor choice. He was honourable and had always looked out for his students. Though they would need to hire a replacement Defense Professor now that a fake Moody was unmasked and the real one would be incapable of fulfilling that task for a number of reasons. McGonagall might prove to be taking some time off because of Moody’s illness. If he could spare Dora he would have her take over the Defense post but he needed her to investigate Dumbledore especially now that his character was taking a Darker turn.

 

Severus glanced at Lucius, “We’ll be needing a Professor to teach the Dark Arts. I’ve wanted that Position for a long time but I don’t think now would be wise. Perhaps, you could convince the Governors to accept Remus? He is probably bored hiding out in my rooms all day. Perhaps, you could fill in on days he should stay in bed?”

 

Lucius chuckled, “I see we think alike. I shall do my best to see that his position as Professor of the Defense Against the Dark Arts in reinstated. He left abruptly last year. I’ll inform the parents that he is not a werewolf and that it was all a misunderstanding. After all the seer said it was reversible.”

 

Severus was pleased that Lucius agreed, “I’ll go tell Remus. I’m sure he’ll be excited.” He swooped out of the room.

 

Lucius approached McGonagall, “Would you like Moody’s things packed up at taken to your rooms? You can ensure they are not meddled with that way.” Despite her blind following of Dumbledore, Minerva McGonagall was a very intelligent and powerful witch.

 

“Yes, thank you Lord Malfoy.” She seemed surprised.

 

“Rumours of my bad character have been greatly exaggerated. You are in for a difficult time. I will render whatever assistance I can.”

 

McGonagall nodded looking at Moody sadly,  “For all his faults, he was a great man.”

 

“If no one else will remember that about him, you should. In the end it is you who once knew him best.” Lucius said gently, amazed at how seeing how distressed she was could change his opinion of her from early Monday morning. He had thought her foolish and insufferable.

 

Ted picked up Moody, “Come now ladies. We should take him to St. Mungos. Dora if you would retrieve his leg and eye.”

 

Dora did but not without feeling a bit squeamish.

 

Lucius watched until they entered the floo, summoning two of his house elves he set them to packing up Moody’s things, ordering them not to repair anything including the Sneakascopes but to makes sure both the Defense Professor’s apartments and office were cleaned but not to let the Hogwarts elves touch a thing. Moody’s things were to be taken to the Deputy Headmistress’ apartments and sealed until her return.

 

The elves bowed several times promising to do as instructed.

 

XoooooX

 

Severus burst into his rooms where Remus was eating dinner alone, “Remus! With Moody gone there is an opening on the staff!”

 

Remus nodded, “So when is Tonks starting?”

 

Severus snickered, “Not Tonks you dunderhead! YOU!”

 

Remus blinked, “I thought you wanted the job?”

 

“And miss out on tormenting Ron at his worst subject? Deflating Granger’s ego? Melding Harry in and my snakes into eminent potioneers? Never. Besides, you are eminently qualified. I’ve always been too interesting in grey magic and some Dark Spells to be extremely confident in my ability to teach Defense. Lucius is going to hire you; he’ll be informing everyone that you resigned because you were taken ill. Your Werewolf status will be swept under the rug. I’ll gladly brew your potion and Lucius will fill in on days you are ill.”

 

“What about Ron and Granger? They’ve seen me transform.” Remus said a bit worried.

 

“Ron’s word will be taken as that of a insufferable git, they’ll think he’s mad. Besides, who would believe that Lucius would hire a werewolf anyway?”

 

“Does that mean I have to move out of these rooms and into my old apartment?” Remus was a bit wary of that.

 

Severus stared, “You think I want you to move out?” he grabbed Remus by his robes and kissed him hard.

 

The older man shocked Remus with such forward behaviour, but his wolf groaned in contentment. He pulled Severus into his lap and kissed him back eagerly.

 

They didn’t stop kissing until a clearing throat interrupted them.

 

Severus turned red.

 

Remus looked up to find a jealous Lucius.

 

“By all means, ignore me.” Lucius said trying to hold back his desire to rip HIS Severus out of Remus’ lap.

 

Severus said quietly, “I’m sorry Lucius. I couldn’t help it. I desire him too but I’m still yours. We’ve only snogged this once.”

 

Lucius sighed, “I should have expected this. You were so excited to tell him about the job. Some of the students thought you’d lost your mind. You were grinning…”

 

Severus left Remus and leaned up to kiss Lucius, “You know I love you.”

 

Lucius kissed those swollen lips eagerly, “I do,”

 

Remus caught a glimpse of their Dark Marks, “Um…did you notice? It’s been getting darker? I don’t remember it looking like that last year.”

 

Severus swallowed, “I’d tried not to notice. Karkaroff has been twitchy lately I know he’s nervous. I keep trying to avoid him. Especially with the Fake Moody being all nosy.”

 

“For Draco and Harry’s sake we’ll have to figure out how to make this work.” Remus said pleasantly.

 

“Perhaps, it’s time I do some investigation of my own. I might be able to find the Dark Lord and see if I can find out what he is planning.”

 

Severus shivered, “I won’t be there to…”

 

“Yes you will. We will go tomorrow. Remus can watch the boys. It’s a Hogsmeade weekend. I’m sure Draco would want to take Harry on a Proper date. There is that new restaurant in Hogsmeade. He is welcome to choose elsewere if you escort him.”

 

Remus was not pleased that Severus was going ‘Dark Lord hunting’ with Lucius but they were adults. “I’ll watch over Harry and Draco. I expect you to bring Severus back in one piece. I may not be his legal Bondmate but I will be very upset if he is injured in anyway.”

 

Lucius would have verbally attacked Remus for implying that he would let Severus come to any harm.

 

“I think we both have had quite enough excitement for today. I think we should have a nice quiet meal, I’ll check on the House and then we are going to bed." Severus said firmly, his hand gripping Lucius' forearm

 

Lucius sighed, he knew better then to argue when Severus used that tone. He summoned Treca, “Dinner for two.” since Remus had already been brought a tray.

 

They ate quietly after dinner was brought and little was said until Severus left to do his nightly check on his House.

 

XoooooX

 

Draco had led his group down to the dungeons and then up for dinner. Viktor hadn’t returned by Dinner and neither had Angelina or Fred and George.

 

Harry waved at someone, “Fred’s back with Angelina but I don’t see George.”

 

Blaise spotted Charlie; he hurried over to the three, “Please come eat with us?” he was hungry to spend more time in Charlie’s company. He was in the space of a few days becoming quite attached.

 

“Are you sure it’s okay?” Angelina asked, “I am a Gryffindor Prefect.”

 

“You’re Fred’s girl. He’s one of Harry’s protectors. Besides, he has to introduce you two to Sophronia.” Blaise said reaching out to touch Charlie’s forearm.

 

Fred blinked, “Sophronia?”

 

Blaise laughed, “You know, Mal? The Chuvash King renamed her.”

 

“I have yet to meet this new cousin.” Charlie said giving in to Blaise’s invitation. “Besides, I should pass on the good news.”

 

Blaise gently tugged Charlie by the arm and thus leading Fred and Angelina over to Slytherin’s table.

 

Draco raised an eyebrow but gestured for them to sit. He worried about Blaise, his old friend seemed quite smitten with George’s older brother and he worried Blaise would be disappointed.

 

Neville had been a bit shy since his outburst and had taken to watching Adrian who seemed most uncomfortable at Draco’s gradual deference and acceptance of the Chuvash King’s decree. Why had he stopped when Adrian told him to? He’d never really spoken to the Slytherin Chaser and Prefect before…

 

Adrian tried not to notice the young cute Gryffindor’s stare much less the rest of his House.

 

Mafalda asked quietly, “What did HE mean by saying that I am a Daughter of the House of Black…”

 

Draco smiled at her, “He is the true Lord of the House of Black, and you have both Black and Prewett blood in your veins. You are the only woman of Black blood in our House. By his decree you are Queen of Slytherin, you outrank every girl in our House including the Prefects. You also technically outrank me. For example you have the right to disagree with me. Only Adrian outranks us both.”

 

Greg moaned, “That means I have to re-memorize our House March to meals!”

 

The House laughed.

 

“A House that prides itself on tradition should graciously accept the change. Daughters of the House of Black have always had the highest status.” Draco acknowledged. “As for Adrian, according to the Chuvash King, specific blood runs through his veins. Only the blood of one can raise him to the highest rank our House can grant.”

 

Every Slytherin bowed their head in reverence.

 

Harry didn’t understand.

 

Blaise leaned over to hiss. “He’s a descendant of Slytherin to be sure. Only that Blood outranks Malfoy and Black.”

 

Harry nodded in thanks.

 

“You expect me to believe that daughter of a Squib is my Queen?” Pansy sneered.

 

The House gasped at her brazen disrespect.

 

“The true Head of her Family has granted her that place.” Draco said scornfully.

 

“Sophronia has been accepted by my papa, Lord Prewett as a member of his House and she shall be Blood Adopted and made an heiress by the New Year. I won’t have you disrespecting my sister.” Fred glared.

 

“I’m not afraid of you bloodtraitor” Pansy glared back.

 

“I am no bloodtraitor. The Bloodtraitor is that useless scum who dare call himself my brother.” Fred snapped.

 

“I declare the sons of Gideon Prewett, Lord of the House of Prewett and Arthur Weasley, firstborn of Lord Weasley to be pureblood heirs. They are NOT bloodtraitors. Watch yourself Parkinson, you are trying my patience and you are disrespecting our Queen. I am sure my Aunt Andromeda would be pleased to make your acquaintance. She was our last Queen. Had my cousin been a member of our House she no doubt would have accepted the role.”

 

“Andromeda Tonks was a coward and a bloodtraitor.” Pansy sneered.

 

“Her Bondmate is the most talented Mind Healer in Britain. His services sought from the Ministry and even amoung our leading families. His blood status is not an issue, if the Chuvash King accepts him as worthy of her and she is a Daughter of his House what right do you have to besmirch her reputation or his?”

 

Pansy’s mouth was not only turning Greg’s heart against her but it was alienating her from her House. She dared to question not only Draco’s but also Sophronia’s authority. It was so utterly unSlytherin of her, that even her dormmates were properly ashamed of her.

 

Draco vaguely noticed Neville’s constant glancing at Adrian and wondered what that could mean. Adrian had been claimed as a Chuvash and Neville was supposed to be one at his inheritance. Knowing Neville’s personality due to his previous attempts to bully the forgetful boy, he was sure due to his shyness he would prove to be a submissive Chuvash. Was Adrian’s Chuvash laying an early claim?

 

Blaise spent much of dinner doing his best to flirt with Charlie, who managed to deflect or pretend not to notice his attentions.

 

Draco was politely solicitous of the Durmstrang students, who looked a bit lost without their Prince Krum.

 

Harry had Draco’s arm wrapped around his waist, it was comforting to feel the warmth of the older boy’s body so close to his own.

 

Dinner was a light-hearted affair; Fred was taking great pleasure introducing Mafalda- now called Sophronia to his girlfriend and his older brother. If their papa was adopting her that made her more sister then Ginny, Mal was a more interesting person then Ginny the mouse.

 

After dinner, Draco waited for Adrian and Mafalda to take their new places before falling just behind them with Fred and Vince between them. Harry was at Draco’s side, Blaise was one step behind them, having invited Charlie to visit the Dungeon, the Dominant was walking beside him, unconsciously assuming the place of mate of the Prince’s second. Greg was behind them and the Seventh Year Prefects, then the rest of their year ect. The only true difference was where Mafalda Prewett and Adrian stood.

 

They made their way amid stares to the dungeon.

 

When Adrian broke formation to hide himself away in his room, Neville felt a bit lost and alone with no way to explain his feelings. He didn’t really know the Sixth Year Slytherin, but a part of him wished he did.

 

Adrian couldn’t avoid a feeling of incompleteness, like he’d touched something amazing briefly and then had it slip through his fingers but he was too distracted to guess what it would be. He had little idea he was related to a Founder, much less Slytherin…

 

Blaise made sure there was a fire in the dormitory’s hearth, escorting Charlie to a chair near it. He was proud to showcase Slytherin’s comforting charms to the person he admired. Shyly he took a place at the Dominant Chuvash’s feet after retrieving his homework and a rare book on Chuvash for Charlie.

 

Charlie had to admit the Slytherin Dungeons were a far warmer place then he’d thought before. A fire in a dormitory? How charming…

 

Blaise summoned his elf for soothing drinks.

 

The elf returned with Firewhiskey and a hot chocolate.

 

Harry was shown to Draco’s bed where they curled up to finish their homework early.

 

Draco had managed to break Harry’s four-year habit of putting homework off to the last second by promising sweets or other incentives to get Harry to agree and focus.

 

Harry was eager to finish his work so he was actually paying attention to his Potions Homework. He didn’t want to disappoint Severus who had been so kind to him in recent weeks.

 

Draco had the foresight to realise that with Moody gone that the position of Defense professor opened up. Although he knew Papa had wanted the job, it would be more prudent to return it to its previous occupant. He glanced at Greg, “Do your best with your Defense Homework. I’m sure the new Defense professor would be more then willing to help you with your problem.”

 

Greg shifted nervously, “How do you know?”

 

“I’m betting papa will have Remus rehired. He’s already around anyway, plus he’s got experience. I know his specialty is Charms but we do need someone and Papa is not so easily replaceable. Brewers of his talent don’t just show up more then once every generation.” Draco laughed.

 

Neville had the same homework as Harry but sat near Greg so he could hear Fred’s explanation of their Transfiguration assignment.

 

Draco chuckled, “I think you should see about dropping Divination, Trelawney is a terrible teacher. I’m focusing more on Ancient Runes; I think you’d do well in that class. Blaise does but he did have a pre-Hogwarts education.”

 

“I don’t really understand it and I spent half my time making up ludicrous predictions.” Harry said quietly.

 

“I’m sure that the Veela Queen’s seer doesn’t attend that class, but then again Trelawney might be too oblivious to recognize a true seer.” Draco shrugged, “I’m sure if we talked to Professor Vector that she would let you in. Especially if Blaise and I helped you catch up. If all else failed you could take it with the Third Years. You might not get to take your NEWTS in it but it would be far more beneficial to you then Divination.”

 

Neville sighed, he hated Divination but he didn’t seem to have a talent for it. Unlike Herbology…Gran was always berating him because of his marks but he had some hope of specializing in Herbology like Professor Sprout.

 

Soon Homework was finished because Slytherins like Ravenclaws believed in finishing immediately and turned to more pleasant tasks.

 

Harry and Draco curled up behind half drawn curtains for privacy.

 

Draco had one arm around Harry’s waist, resting his hand on the tiny teen’s cheek and drew him into a demanding kiss.

 

Until Draco Harry hadn’t even known what a kiss truly was or how enjoyable it could be. Draco could make him forget everything.

 

Draco loved the feel of Harry’s skin beneath his hand, the softness of his lips and the warmth of his body. Draco had been restraining himself because sleeping with non-Chuvash was known to make them infertile and the last thing he wanted was to destroy Harry’s chance of having a family, just because they were supposed to be together didn’t mean they wouldn’t have challenges to face first. He would be lying to deny an urge to explore Harry’s body, to memorize every muscle, every erogenous zone and more. He felt his prick harden as he pulled Harry close.

 

Blaise’s ears twitched as he felt every moan escaping Harry’s lips no matter how faint. He was thankful for his dark complexion and the folds of his robe that his reaction to their endearing shy snogging session was giving him. He glanced sideways up at the Dominant Chuvash whose attentions he wished to be the recipient of but seemed to guess nothing of his desires.

 

Charlie did his best to ignore them; he did wish that he could find someone…he just didn’t expect to. Submissive male Chuvash were rare and he didn’t expect to find one.

 

Draco had managed to forget they weren’t alone; his hand crept beneath Harry’s crisp white linen dress shirt, after slowly tugging it free from the Gryffindor’s trousers. Splaying his fingers on Harry’s bare stomach, he groaned, looking down into those green eyes wide with shock and pleasure.

 

Harry hadn’t felt Draco’s hand on his bare skin before; after all they’d never bathed together. The touch felt branding; Draco’s hand felt like it burned where it touched him.

 

Blaise flew to his feet; clapping his hands, “Bath time. I’m sure Adrian’s done. We should go claim the bath.”

 

Blaise’s announcement startled Draco that he fell out of bed.

 

Charlie was surprised, “What?”

 

Blaise grinned at him, “You don’t think the Hogwarts Prefects’ bath was the only one of it’s kind here do you? Slytherin had one installed here. Of course there is a boy and girls one. Never seen the girls but I heard it is staffed by Neriads. Ours has Naiads but we can ask for Neriads.”

 

Vince groaned, “Can I shower? I’d prefer not to…”

 

Blaise chuckled, “You’re welcome to the deep end and all the Naiads you desire with Fred and Greg.”

 

”What are Neriads?” Harry asked after catching his breath.

 

“Neriads are like Naiads, unlike merfolk they are actually beautiful. They are sexually flexible. If they were human they would be considered bi-sexual. A Naiad is a female water nymph while a Neriad is a male water nymph.” Blaise explained gently. “Slytherin baths are a secret pleasure usually afforded only to the Slytherin King, Queen, Prince, Prefects and their Court. Ordinary Slytherins don’t get that kind of special treatment.” Blaise was quite eager to see Charlie naked. “We get massaged with fragrant oils and then washed before soaking in hot water that has potions that promote beautiful, healthy skin.”

 

“That’s why you are all so good-looking.” Fred said astonished.

 

“I think Pansy hoped as my consort she would be granted access to that world of pleasures. Now she never will.” Draco said reaching for his dressing gown and swiftly undressing. He slipped his feet into velvet slippers, gesturing for Harry to do the same.

 

Harry swiftly followed Draco’s example.

 

Charlie was a bit surprised at the swiftness everyone undressed.

 

Blaise summoned his elf and requested a dressing gown for Charlie.

 

Charlie attempted to protest.

 

Blaise grinned up at him, “You’re my guest.”

 

Fred summoned his own dressing gown from the Tower but it was used and frayed. He took pity on Neville and summoned the shy boy’s as well.

 

Draco was ashamed for his friend; the son of the Prewett Lord shouldn’t be forced to wear clothes like that.

 

Blaise’s elf returned quickly with a stiff and dated dressing gown but had clearly belonged to a wealthy person.

 

Properly attired, they made their way deeper in the Dungeon.

 

Blaise led the way, opening the shining polished wooden door, “Welcome to paradise.”

 

The room was far from empty, there were two Neriads present with the normal number of Naiads present but the two Neriads were tending to Adrian.

 

Neville blushed, wrapping his dressing gown tighter around him.

 

Draco bowed, “My apologies for disturbing you my Lord.”

 

“Slytherin’s Cauldron! Give it a rest Malfoy. I’m sick of that. I never asked for this blood, imagine my surprise when I woke on my sixteenth birthday to find I had inherited this? We hadn’t had a Chuvash in the Pucey line before, the portraits of my ancestors were stunned. You want to use the room’s services, I have no objections.”

 

“Chuvash had been considered extinct in the Weasley line. I guess I inherited mine through my grandmother Cedrella.” Charlie said politely.

 

Adrian’s Chuvash sensed another dominant, sized him up and decided that a fight wasn’t worth it. The other Dominant was taller, broader and seemed to have more natural strength.                        

 

Blaise cast a more experienced eye over Adrian; he’d known more Chuvash personally but never intimately. Charlie was more manly, more clearly a Dominant. His own unawakened Chuvash was more drawn to the Dragon-tamer rather then the Slytherin Chaser.

 

The room was hot and the air filled with incense.

 

Draco shook his head politely at the Naiads, "only Fred, Greg and Vince shall be using your services. If the Neriads are free, we would prefer a host of them to serve us."

 

One of the Naiads flirted off and soon returned with at least twenty of her male kindred.

 

The Neriads surrounded Draco’s companions, four to a boy.

 

They sensually undressed Draco, leading him to a cushioned table.

 

Harry followed Draco’s example and let himself be led.

 

The Neriads ran sensual hands over their bodies, pausing to anoint their liquid hands with oils and perfumes.

 

Harry moaned softly, unused to such pleasures. His skin riddled with scars was very sensitive.

 

Draco couldn’t help in his eyes were glued to Harry’s slight form.

 

Neriads had no rules about what not to touch, they used their skills to bring their clients pleasure. Rubbing nipples in a circular pattern, their water like hands almost lapping at your skin, the sensual pressure of their hands on sensitive thighs and…

 

Harry and Neville having never been subject to a Neriad or Naiad’s attention or spent much time pleasuring themselves were soon fully hard and gasping.

 

Their reaction hadn’t been expected to be so quick.

 

They took to the pleasures like a bird does flight.

 

Blaise could hardly hold back his enjoyment; it was a sinfully enjoyable experience. He eagerly awaited the day when it was his Dominant’s hands on his body but he hoped they were rougher.

 

Neville and Harry came first, their cum mixing with the smell of the incense. They were carried over to the fountains where their bodies were washed with a soap-like mixture that smelt strongly of olive oil.  Languidly they relaxed being carried by the Neriads who laid them in carved seats in what the Muggles would call a Jacuzzi.

 

Blaise was next, his cry escaping tightly pursed lips.

 

The two dominants in the room could not fail to notice something similar about the three.

 

Draco’s Veela though unawakened had memorized the smell and sound of Harry’s total pleasure and abandon.

 

Soon all of the boys had tasted the pleasure of a Neriad or a Naiad’s massage, they were bathed and washed before escorted to join Harry and Neville who were boneless.

 

Draco did something he’d never done before, join Harry and pull him into his lap.

 

At first Harry fought feeling the sensation of a manly body beneath him, his Chuvash soon recognized his mate and relaxed. His head resting on Draco’s shoulder and his back leaned against Draco’s strong chest.

 

The bath was small and didn’t truly allow for this number of people.

 

Blaise blushed and apologized as he slid into Charlie’s lap.

 

Charlie was stunned but did nothing to push him away.

 

Adrian saw nowhere to sit.

 

Neville swallowed, “I…can share…” his blush spread quickly from his cheeks to his toes. Why did he desire to be near the older student?

 

Adrian accepted not knowing quite why, lifting the other with a weak levitating charm and slipping in behind him.

 

Neville’s human desire to flee was calmed by a rush of contentment.

 

Blaise could feel Charlie’s muscles taunt beneath him, his ardour for the Dominant increasing.

 

So Harry’s nervousness had disappeared and he started to doze off comforted by Draco’s closeness and the relaxing experience.

 

Chuckling, Draco lifted him out kissing him softly, “Merlin you’re gorgeous.”

 

The Neriads hurried to dry them both and helped them into their dressing gowns.

 

Those reluctant to leave were Neville and Blaise but they had no words to explain.

 

Blaise had relaxed openly for probably the first time in his life.

 

“It’s late I should head back to the tent.” Charlie said quietly.

 

Blaise clutched his sleeve, “Please don’t. You can take my bed. Neville and I can sleep on the armchairs. I’ll transfigure them into daybeds Amry will bring bedding.”

 

“What about Fred?” Charlie asked curious.

 

“If it’s too late to be in the halls, he curls up on the floor by Greg’s bed. He said he was used to hard beds.” Draco replied as he dressed a sleepy Harry and put him to bed. Stripping out of his own dressing gown he slid into silk lined velvet monogrammed pyjamas.

 

Charlie nodded, “They’ve been treated harshly much of the time at home. Most of us were too wary of Molly’s wrath to step up for them.” He’d briefly seen Viktor with George, in person the Bulgarian Seeker had a different persona then he did during a match. He found he approved of the young man who was less then two years older then his youngest brother. He changed into clothes he summoned quietly from the tent and almost gratefully crawled into Blaise’s bed. As he drifted off he wondered why the boy seemed so eager to please him.

 

Fred noticed slightly and thought Charlie was oblivious, remembering Blaise’s teasing comment about choosing George as a type rather then himself because he liked girls too much. Only to have his twin reply that their tastes were probably too similar to match. Literally, they both drifted to Seekers, rather well built one’s with Chuvash blood and rather protective natures.

 

Theo buried himself in the covers having been mostly forgotten. Blaise was practically whoring himself for the tall muscular redhead, how could the man not notice? He worshipped Blaise, yet he’d been turned down before he could even ask properly. Blaise was so good and kind, he helped him with his schoolwork and kept other Slytherins from bullying him. He hero-worshiped the other and yet he remained invisible.

 

Harry snuggled sleepily into Draco’s chest unconsciously wrapping an arm around the older boy’s neck.

 

Draco kissed his forehead, how quickly things changed between them. They’d gone from hurling curses at one another to cuddling in a few short weeks.  Until seeing beneath the illusion he’d built up of Harry Potter, he’d not believed in Love and had expected he’d find himself trapped eventually in a lonely, unhappy Bonding with Parkinson. But his last thought as he drifted off was of Harry and how much he’d fight to stay at his side.

 

XoooooX

 

Having left Weasley Hall, Viktor flooed holding George close to his parents' home in the forests of Bulgaria. He made his way to his father’s study, finding the door closed he knocked and hissed out in Parseltongue, “Father?”

 

The door opened of it’s own accord, “Son?”

 

“Father I have come with glad tidings.”

 

“Enter.”

 

Viktor entered his fingers entwined with George; “I bring one whom shall bear your grandchild if you consent. I present George Weasley, grandson of Lord Weasley, fifth born of Lord Prewett. He has running through his veins Chuvash blood. Like me his Chuvash cannot shed it’s skin. He is a distant relation of the Chuvash King.”

 

A man taller then Charlie and far more imposing rose from the desk. “Let me have a look at him.”

 

George swallowed and felt almost naked as Viktor’s hand released his, but he stood tall and proud as if he were watching Oliver accept the Quidditch Cup finally.

 

“He shall do I think. He has spirit this one.” The man drawled. “Smells of Earth.”

 

“His eldest brother is a Gringotts Cursebreaker, unmated. The second born, a Dominant Chuvash, unmated that works for Dragomir at the Dragon Preserve in Romania. The third is the effective Head of the British Ministry’s Department of International Relations and betrothed to a Professional Quidditch Keeper. The fourth is George’s twin, they have plans to open a business together, and both being keen inventors.”

 

“A Submissive’s place is at home.” The man said firmly.

 

George was a bit angry but was careful not to show it, “If I have a Greenhouse in which to raise needed plants and a potions lab as well as the ability to fire-call my brother I don’t see how I can’t do both.”

 

“What about the raising of your children?”

 

“Do we not use house elves to some extent? Spending too much time with a child can be a detrimental to proper development as ignoring them. My aunt exhibited both behaviours and those she spoiled are lazy, unsocial, either loudmouth bullies or dreadfully shy.  I would have no problem bearing children, in fact…” George blushed, “I’ve always wanted some. I have four older brothers and a cousin who is a soon-to-be sister. I would see to their feeding and give them appropriate attention but I see no good reason why one should respond at once to every cry a baby makes. Sometimes a House elf can give appropriate care but love or affection comes from the parent. As for discipline, parental expectations should be consistent yes? Both bearer and sire in agreement most of the time at least in what discipline should be. I don’t agree to beatings, but sometimes a light smack or a slap to the bottom is needed. I don’t believe sleeping on a cold stone floor is a decent punishment.”

 

“I like this one, he is very family minded. He has thought out about how to raise children. He will make you a fine mate.”

 

Viktor grinned, reaching to squeeze George’s hand, “It was a test. You passed.”

 

George sighed in relief he was approved of. At least this man would not meet his purported mother; she would be embarrassing and rude.  He would hate for this man to see the shack he was raised in.

 

Viktor’s father held out his hand, “I am Branislav Krum but more often called Branko, Viktor’s Otac. You may address me as Otac, Branko or Tast,”

 

Viktor whispered, “Tast is father-in-law in Croatian, his bearer’s native tongue. Otac is father.”

 

“In Britain it is customary to address if desired your Bondmate’s parents as mother and father. I have a dad and a papa, if it is your will I shall call you father so Otac will be alright with me.”

 

Branko grinned, “I like this boy, he’s very polite. I believe he’ll be a fine addition to this family.”

 

Viktor was more then a little pleased that his father approved of George.

 

“Your mother must meet him.”

 

Viktor was a bit worried; his mother had wanted him to a nice female Submissive. Well, he couldn’t help it if he lost his heart to his George.

 

Branko led the way to his wife’s conservatory, upon opening the door he called out, “Rozica, srce. Viktor is home.”

 

Viktor?

 

George was a bit surprised that all that was truly spoken was Parseltongue. He’d have hope he got good fast…

 

Viktor! My child! You came to tell us about the First Task? What a wonderful boy! So how did you do?”

 

Uncle Dragomir brought dragons.”

 

Dragons? Your score was best?”

 

George laughed, “Of course, he flew and snuck past a Chinese Fireball.”

 

You would be?” the tiny slim woman glanced at him, annoyed that this stranger was speaking out of turn.

 

Mari, this is my betrothed. Otac, his grandfather and his papa already agreed. He,”

 

You bring this boy to me?”

 

Branko glared, “Rozica!”

 

What boy would be good enough for my chick?”

 

He has the blood of the Chuvash King running through his veins. His Grandfather is a Lord; his sire is the firstborn of that lord while his bearer is also a lord. His brother works for Dragomir, another as a Cursebreaker and a third works in the International Relations Department at the British Ministry.

 

Branko Solnyshko moyo, why do you agree to this? Why was I not good enough a submissive? If he had been born a true Dominant he would have found a nice real submissive.” Viktor’s mother moaned.

 

Viktor pulled George close and gave him a kiss just as intense as the one after casting the snitch.

 

George was shocked; he didn’t even think to fight it. His arms wound around Viktor’s neck and his knees were weak.

 

Viktor pressed George tight to him and felt the younger teen’s instantaneous hard-on.

 

Branko chuckled, “Now Rozica, if that’s not a true submissive I don’t know what is. I think this boy would let our Viktor have him right here. I don’t think he could defy his Dominant.”

 

George blushed but he really couldn’t break that kiss, especially not with how tightly Viktor was holding him with one hand tightly gripping his neck and the other around his waist.

 

Viktor broke the kiss, pressing George’s face to his shoulder, “I could do that to him but he deserves better then to have our first time anywhere but in private.”

 

Branko laughed, “So…he is a virgin.”

 

George swallowed and then nodded blushing fiercely. Fred was not, but he hadn’t slept with anyone…somehow internally he’d know he couldn’t jump into bed with just anyone. He hadn’t known until Professor Sna…Prince-Malfoy told Dumbledore that Chuvash Submissives couldn’t sleep with just anyone before mating or they’d become infertile.

 

I knew he was special the moment we shared a table. I was determined to get to know him better; a Dominant needs little time to convince a submissive that they are the right fit. Less then a week and he’s my betrothed. I wasn’t going to sexually pressure him until we were, though I could have."

 

Branko clapped his hands, a House elf appeared. “Our son and his betrothed will be joining us for dinner.”

 

We’ll be bonded properly but by Chuvash standards when a Submissive accepts a Dominant they are a couple.” Viktor smirked, his eyes undressing the shy Gryffindor.

 

George swallowed, he could hardly think or breathe when Viktor looked at him like that.

 

They ate a rather interesting meal, with Viktor’s mother still mostly glaring at him.

 

After dinner Branko poured them drinks and toasted George welcoming him to the family, which his Submissive wife barely acknowledged.

 

Viktor kissed George’s cheek, “Thank you Otac. We appreciate your approval.”

 

George was a bit saddened that Viktor’s mother didn’t approve of them but at it seemed his father’s opinion was the only one that mattered.  It still hurt to be disliked by a mother…

 

 

 

Chapter Text

Eager Viktor led George to his personal rooms in the West wing, upon his inheritance he was treated by his father as an adult despite his dubious inheritance. He lifted his submissive’s chin, “Welcome home.” Throwing open the door.

 

George was shy, both eager and nervous about this. He wanted to be with his boyfriend… no were they betrothed or bonded?

 

Viktor chuckled feeling him shiver, “You know I won’t do anything that would displease you. I want you. You’re mine.”

 

Weak though his Chuvash was, George felt him fighting mightily. “Yours.” They’d both been waiting for Viktor without knowing it. His wizard intelligence was fighting with his not so dormant Chuvash instincts; it was not too soon to be intimate. His Chuvash had won.

 

Despite wanting to lift George up and carrying him to bed, Viktor guessed that George’s pride wouldn’t be too accepting of that. After all, his Submissive was a Beater, George maybe a submissive but he was a rather strong person both in will and size. Instead he chose to lead George to their bed, slowly undressing him. This day would always be important to him, the day he scored well at the First Task and the day George was acknowledged as his.

 

George was so anxious to not disappoint Viktor that he was at present content to follow his Dominant’s lead.

 

Viktor kissed his neck, removing first his robe and then his Hogwarts uniform. He almost couldn’t breathe, his submissive was more muscular then he’d expected. He still though George was one of the most beautiful person’s he’d ever seen, beautiful of heart, spirit and face. He kissed him deeply, holding George and kissing him insistently.

 

George felt naked, though he still was wearing trousers, knickers, socks and shoes.

 

Viktor smirked, banishing their clothes to a pile and leading his mate to bed.

 

George was naked; he shivered looking up at his dominant. “Viktor.”

 

Viktor gave into his instincts and tackled George to the bed, his broom callused hands running over George’s muscular chest. Brutally laying claim to the mouth he’d barely begun to memorize.

 

George moaned, the touch both familiar and exotic, was playing his weak Chuvash like a harp.

 

Viktor growled softly, with his lack of fangs and claws prevented him from doing marking George as his own, his magic leaping at George.

 

A Mark resembling that of a Dominant Chuvash’s fangs appeared on George’s shoulder.  It morphed into a raven clutching a robin to his chest in what looked more like passion then terror.

 

Viktor kissed it, “Mine!”

 

George had allowed the marking, his desire to belong his greatest draw.

 

Viktor kissed, and touched him all over. He was a bit awed that a guy who looked like this would be submissive to a guy like him. It proved you couldn’t judge by appearances…

 

George was slowly being overwhelmed having no sexual experience beyond kissing.

 

Viktor reached down to take George’s prick in his hand, pumping it.

 

George thrashed a bit and moaned; no one had ever touched him there but himself and this felt so different. More erotic…

 

For a relatively big guy, Viktor was surprised how small George’s prick was. Stroking it and listening to George’s moans of pleasure, “You like this? “

 

I’m not that big sorry. Fred’s is bigger.” Fred had matured more and teased him that sex was responsible for his large endowment. Fred had a long thick cock and big heavy bollocks.

 

Viktor smirked, “You’re perfect.” Straddling George’s large frame, George was rather tall for a submissive being about 177 cm; he was about 183 cm, which made him still taller then George. His own endowment was longer and thicker than his mate’s; he ached to sexually claim his mate. His Chuvash instincts tempered by his Wizard conscience chose gentleness rather than a rough sensual claiming.

 

George could see the sheer size of Viktor’s cock, it somewhat scared him. How would that fit inside him, he wondered since in theory he knew how sex between wizards worked. He’d swiped a few books while at the book store in Diagon when no one was watching a difficult thing to do with anywhere from four to six siblings around and a mother person like Molly around.

 

Relax…” Viktor said stroking him more, the bollock sask that hung between George’s thick muscular legs. It wasn’t large nor did it hang much but it pleased him. Viktor could smell both George’s arousal as well as his fertility. Both excited his Chuvash,

 

George arched into the touch, the callused hand cupping his bollocks and the other touching his prick so intimately. He was too close; he didn’t want to come without…he blushed, Viktor being inside him. Although he had no idea how something so large would fit. He whispered between gasped of pleasure, “Please…I…

 

Viktor smirked, reaching to stroke himself, “You want this?”

 

George blushed, his mouth dry, “I…” he closed his eyes and turned his head away. He looked nothing like any submissive he’d seen pictures of. He was taller, more muscular and technically ‘masculine. He felt his Chuvash’s desire merged with his own, they both wanted Viktor…

 

Viktor knew instinctively what to do, casting spells that relaxed George and would make entering him easier.

 

George cried out, the gentle magic reaching deep inside him and he felt it changing him.

 

Viktor spread George’s legs, moving them to his shoulders and slowly thrust into his mate.

 

George whimpered, blushing ashamed at the weak sound, submissive he maybe but he was no weakling.

 

Viktor was soon buried deep inside his mate, pulling him up for a rough kiss.

 

George’s instincts kicked in finally, his hands clawing into Viktor’s shoulders, he hissed, “Fuck me.”

 

Viktor smirked, his thoughts of easing his mate into a sexual relationship forgotten.

 

Their first mutual sexual experience became gradually rougher as George began rocking back into his Dominant’s deep, penetrating thrusts. His hands clawing at Viktor’s shoulders, his voice choked out hisses begging for more.

 

Viktor was quite pleased when he watched George come twice, one within mere moments of being taken and the next was from the repeated pounding he was giving him.

 

Neither time George came did he require any stimulation of his prick.

 

The second time Viktor’s enjoyment of George’s orgasm brought on his own as his mate’s unintentional tightening as he came took him over the edge.

 

They lay there covered in spunk and sweat, blood dripping slowly down Viktor’s shoulders from George’s fingernails clawing them.

 

George was exhausted, but strangely pleased. He loved his dominant; their coming together had brought only joy to him. Lying beneath Viktor, his dominant’s prick inside him George truly felt at home as he never had before. He wished his older brothers could feel that same measure of contentment…

 

Viktor kissed him lightly and then went to move.

 

George said quietly, “Don’t…” as pathetic as it probably made him sound, he liked this feeling and Viktor moving would break their physical connection. That was the last thing he wanted…

 

 

 

Chapter Text

Chapter 24-

Lucius woke at dawn, as much as he was not looking forward to this 'investigation'; he knew that they had to move fast before wind of the escape and subsequent arrest of Death Eater and attacker of the Longbottom couple Bartimus Crouch Jr. reached the Dark Lord. He was nervous, he wasn't all that keen on Severus joining him but he knew better then to argue with the younger wizard. His mate had taken the Dark Lord's Mark and sold his loyalty to two false masters; to suit his own ends; which were to protect Lucius himself. Severus had even played the role of double agent spying on both sides without giving himself away.

Remus who also was Severus' mate had, much to his annoyance told him that he expected Severus to return unharmed. It had rankled his Veela, the implication that he would allow Severus to come to harm. He shook Severus gently but firmly, "We must get going. We cannot waste time. The Dark Lord could move if he got wind of the fact that his servant was apprehended.

Remus woke sensing Lucius' nervousness mixed with a slight hint of fear, most likely for their mate rather then himself.

Severus woke at once, he slipped from the bed he shared with Lucius, with his Muggle boxers slung low on his hips.

Lucius and Remus both had trouble looking away.

Despite his scars and without the fire-retardant potion in his hair, Severus was actually good looking. His nose, which usually had a hooked-like appearance, was more truly rakishly set after having been broken a few times. His hair had a loose, wavy quality to it and it seemed to tease his bare shoulders.

Remus whistled, "Damn Lucius, I am quite jealous. You've seen him at his best, no wonder you fell for him."

Lucius chuckled, "I walked in on him in the shower. He had fewer scars then but he had a pure spirit that shined through."

Severus tugged on a Muggle black t-shirt and his customary black robe. "It was disconcerting to be a First Year and be ogled by the Fifth Year Prefect and Prince of Slytherin."

"Come on Sev, you enjoyed it. You were having erotic dreams of me for years." Lucius teased as he dressed.

Severus protested, blushing, "You stripped in front of me numerous times. Only you could make showering alone look quite that erotic! I was twelve and ever since he’s enjoyed showing off."

Lucius kissed the top of his head being a few centimetres taller, "Like I said, he enjoyed it." Having in the course of Severus' protests dressed in more serviceable robes for travelling.

Remus laughed, "With as little of you as I've seen; Lucius, I can imagine how you might be sexually attracted. If I'd had someone doing that in the Tower I might have been tempted."

Severus grabbed his wand and pulled on a cloak, tugging the hood over his loose hair. "We're wasting Daylight."

"Keep an eye on the boys Remus." Lucius reminded the former Gryffindor before slipping out to the floo. They'd Apparate from the Manor, it would be less traceable there he hoped.

Remus watched them go, feeling a little unsettled. Tracking down a probably insane, frighteningly powerful Dark Lord was dangerous business.

XoooooX

Upon arriving at Malfoy Manor, Lucius was reminded that Narcissa was no longer in residence and had been gratefully packed off by his house elves to some residence he'd forgotten that had been part of her dowry. Her access to Malfoy and Black vaults that she had had access to during the course of their unhappy 'marriage' had been removed. Black was the name she might have returned to but between Andromeda and Remus, she was not allowed access to Harry's inheritance as Lord Black. He shook himself pacing the library, where would Barty Jr. have been held and how had he escaped?

"I remember, Dumbledore mentioned that following Barty Jr.'s imprisonment, his mother who was never well took ill. Her last wish before her death was to see her son, Dumbledore had laughed when he heard that Crouch had taken her. He hadn't thought Crouch had an emphatic bone in his body." Severus said shaking his head.

"How did Black escape?" Lucius was curious how someone could escape a fortress considered inescapable.

"His animagus form. I snuck in and hid under Harry's cloak so I overheard. His animagus form is that a large black dog that might be mistaken for Grim by a weak-minded person, he was thin enough to slip through the bars and then swam as a dog back to shore away from Azkaban." Severus shrugged. "Not how I would have done it."

Lucius was curious, "What would you have done?"

"Had you been sentenced? I plotted it all through your trial. I would kidnap that woman, placing her under the imperious Curse and convince her she was you. I'd feed her a poison that would slowly kill her and tell her that she was dying. Then I would give her a small flask filled with enough Polyjuice to keep her alive for a bit. I'd slip you a potion that would make you ill but one I had an antidote to. Then I'd give you a Polyjuice potion to make you look like that woman. I researched Dementors; they are blind and have little sense of smell. They would sense me arriving with a seriously ill person and leaving with a seriously ill person. All though the poison I would have fed that woman would have no antidote. She would have taken ill and died with in days, convinced that the Polyjuice was a medicinal potion she needed to take on the hour. My research into Polyjuice potion revealed that if you die while under the affects of the potion, you retain the form of the person you are Polyjuiced as." Severus admitted quite embarrassed.

"You would have cast an Unforgivable Curse for me?" Lucius was shocked; Severus had to his knowledge never cast one of those Curses.

Severus stared at the floor; "I knew you didn't join the ranks of the Dark Lord of your own free will. It would have been a travesty of justice to let you rot in that hellhole. My conscience would not have allowed me to leave you there. That woman was just as mad as her sister and yet she was allowed to go free. I would have sooner imprisoned her in your place…"

"As well as fed her a poison that would kill her slowly to ensure she died in my place?" Lucius was shocked at the lengths Severus would have gone to be together with him. Then he realized it, "Wasn't there a rumour that Barty Crouch Jr. took ill soon after being imprisoned? What if he was smuggled out the same way? Would his mother have begged to see him or having him secretly freed, rather then die knowing her son was imprisoned?"

Severus thought about it, "She seemed unusually attached to her son and took his imprisonment hard. She had fallen dreadfully ill following his sentence, he pleaded with her to convince his father he was innocent. Then again, Dumbledore claimed to have been behind his protests of innocence. I wonder if Crouch had been moved by her pleas to attempt a similar escape. His wife was a Hufflepuff I believe; both Bartimus Crouches' were Ravenclaws. Would explain Lord Crouch's law fixation..."

"So if he was removed from Azkaban, I remember seeing announcements in the paper that both mother and son died within days if not weeks of each other." Lucius mused. "I remember! Crouch had two seats up in the Minister's Box at the World Cup. His house elf was saving him a seat. What if it wasn't empty? She was up there before anyone else arrived and left last."

"So, he not only escaped Azkaban, Crouch was holding him prisoner in their own home?" Severus was shocked, how such a man as Crouch could have fallen.

"Who was it that disappeared? Bertha Jorkins? She used to work in his department years ago. Quite a gossip hound, Ravenclaw I think. I never remembered her memory being spotty in school. She was dedicated, going above and beyond expected of her in classes. Yet Bagman explained her absence as having poor sense of direction probably read her map wrong and ended up in Australia instead of,"

Severus interrupted, eyes widening, "Albania! That was where Quirrell found him. He was weak then, more then ghost but less than a spirit. Harry mumbled in his sleep in the Infirmary about him. That the Dark Lord possessed snakes and other creatures but they died quickly not being able to stand being possessed by a human spirit."

"Could Jorkins have accidentally run into the Dark Lord while travelling?" Lucius was a bit doubtful.

"No, but someone else could have heard and understood Harry's mutterings." Severus said as the possibilities seemed fall into place.

"Who?" Lucius was curious.

"Pettigrew. After being discovered as himself rather then Scabbers, he found himself lost. If he had wind of the Dark Lord, he might have felt he had nowhere else to turn. His family thought he was dead, his friends wanted his worthless hide brought to justice for being responsible for Potter and Lily's deaths. Even Harry was denouncing him. He kept saying he was alive, that Black was innocent. Without family or friends to turn to, and clearly afraid that loyal Death Eaters would blame him for their Lord's fall, he probably returned to the one person who might still accept his worthless carcass." Severus explained.

"Pettigrew? He would have tracked down the Dark Lord? Wasn't he that spineless coward who followed Black, Potter and Remus around like a lost puppy?" Lucius was shocked the Dark Lord had accepted such a snivelling useless individual who would betray his own friends.

"Think about it, if he retained the Dark Lord's esteem, then the angry Death Eaters couldn't touch him." Severus was surprised he hadn't consider it before. "Now, think about it. Jorkins might not likely meet the Dark Lord while travelling in Albania but a supposedly dead schoolmate alive and well is much more likely. Pettigrew wouldn't have known about her recently developed memory issues and would have found someway to subdue her. Then he would have been forced to seek out the Dark Lord with her in tow. Now unable to decide what to do with her and knowing she had gone to work for the Ministry, he would have turned her over to the Dark Lord hoping to win favour by bring him relatively recent Ministry intelligence."

"Jorkins worked for Bagman in the Department of Magickal Sports and Games, he would have learned not only about the Quidditch World Cup but also about the Tournament. Somehow he freed Barty Jr. who was no doubt being held a prisoner in his childhood home."

"Probably under the Imperious Curse to keep him from escaping."

"Wasn't it Harry's wand used to conjure the Dark Mark?"

Severus nodded, "So I heard from Dumbledore. Harry apparently lost at some point."

"I wasn't there at the Riot, I know that Woman used my mask."

"I thought she had her own." Severus was surprised.

"She did. Somehow no one ever checked her for the Dark Mark." Lucius shrugged.

"I know you weren't at the riot because you were with me. You'd slipped away."

"At least Draco had the foresight to get to the forest. I would have hated for him to have been accused of anything."

"It was Crouch's elf found with the wand. Arthur told Dumbledore after he came to reassure him about Moody that Winky had been described as tugging and pulling against something in the forest. Ronald had mimicked the poor elf, "People is high, high in the air. Winky is getting out of the way." Severus said nodded, grateful that Draco hadn't been closer to the riot.

"What if Winky's charge was Barty Jr.? She were sitting right behind Harry, I remember thinking he was quite careless because his wand was sticking out of his pocket rather then in a holster at his side. Could Barty Jr. even under the Imperious have a clear-headed enough moment to steal a boy's wand? I doubt very much that Crouch would have left his Criminal son have a wand after his arrest. A house elf has special magic, knowing her master's son had been a Death Eater; she might have wanted to prevent him from joining his former companions thus disobeying her master by leaving their tent."

Lucius and his mate had always managed to think on similar paths.

"Of course. I remember Arthur mentioning that Crouch went back into the trees after Diggory came out with Winky who had Harry's wand. Winky must have stolen it away from him after he cast the Dark Mark into the sky. Perhaps, he found a stunned Barty Jr. and recast the Imperious on him before returning to deal with Winky. He was probably terrified his secret would have been revealed. The fact that Barty Jr. was nearly caught for casting the Dark Mark would explain his harsh treatment of his elf."

Severus smirked, "That settles it. Crouch is missing, his son is free, I mean was free. Which means someone more powerful then Crouch arrived at his home. If Jorkins discovered by accident that Barty Jr. was at his home rather then dead, to safe-guard his secret Crouch would have had to use powerful memory charms."

"Charms powerful enough to damage her memory. To extract such deeply buried memories would be something the Dark Lord could do." Lucius admitted, although he hadn't been close to scandal-loving Jorkins, he was sorry her path had crossed with his former master.

"Extracting those memories would have further damaged her brain leaving her in little better condition then the Longbottoms." Severus was a bit disturbed by that; mental magic should be used for healing rather then harm, a view that put him at odds with his former masters.

"To keep an eye on Crouch while his son was masquerading as Moody would probably be Pettigrew. If the Dark Lord is as weak as you say, then he can't be far from the two." Lucius was surprised, but not really that they had divined the Dark Lord's location so easily though speculation and little evidence pieced together.

"I know the way to Crouch's home. Dumbledore sent me a few times there with private messages when Crouch was Head of Magical Law Enforcement." Severus admitted ruefully.

Lucius kissed his temple, "Then I shall allow you to Apparate me then."

Severus led his Bondmate to the edge of the Manor's wards, pulled him close and Apparated him to the Crouch's home.

XoooooX

Draco woke up; his first thought was that it was a Hogsmeade Weekend. He thought how much he would enjoy taking Harry on a real date. He'd seen glimpses that though Harry had no concept of the life he'd had been destined to have as the designated Potter heir at birth. He slipped out of bed, his dressing gown leaping into his hand as he tucked the blanket around Harry. Slipping into his dressing gown and slippers, he made his way to the patch of floor that Fred was sleeping on beside Greg's bed. He knelt and poked him whispering, "Fred."

Fred woke rubbing his eyes and looking around as if he couldn't remember where he was.

"You're in the Dungeons in the Fourth Year Dormitory. I want to ask you, what would Harry like? I'm trying to some up with a 'perfect date plan'. You know him better then I having been on the Quidditch team with him for three years." Draco asked while silently conjuring a comfortable chair.

Fred sat up, wandlessly causing the fire to leap to new life, filling the room with fresh warmth.

Draco's eyes narrowed, what other blood was in the Black line? He'd never seen anything like that and Fred was no Chuvash, despite his apparent affinity with flame. Then it struck him, Fred hadn't used fire… he'd used wind. Wind was the fire's breath and he was born to fly, he soared puling some times dangerous stunts as a Beater. "What are you? You're no Chuvash or Veela. You received a Magical Creature inheritance as well, yet you keep it well hidden. Your own twin doesn't know."

Fred scoffed, "Not like George told me either. I'm more sexually driven then he is, he is the more motherly of the two of us. Don't get me wrong, I know he's not a weakling and we're about even in strength. The only physical different is the size of our package, I'm bigger then he is."

Draco snorted, "You're also about a centimetre and a half taller. You unlike George will no doubt continue growing. You won't reach Charlie's size; he's as large as he is due to his Chuvash inheritance."

Fred sighed; he'd hoped that the size difference wouldn't be noticeable. He'd lamented the loss of his total mirror image looks with George. It was actually his inheritance that caused the change in the size of his package, not his sexual prowess and experience that he teased his twin about. George had told him shyly after hearing that sex for submissive Chuvash with non-Chuvash caused infertility, he felt guilty. Each of his brothers because of Molly, their purported mother craved more then anything a family that was close-knit and loving, the likes of which they never truly had despite outward appearances. If George had succumbed to his jibes and slept with anyone, he would have been indirectly responsible for his twin's inability to have children. That tore at his heart, he was glad George had waited and hoped that Viktor was the right person for him. He still couldn't understand why someone like his twin could like guys and be the 'Keeper' in the relationship. If George had been more like Charlie, then perhaps he might have understood. Blaise was a bit taller and lithely muscled compared to their little Harry but he could understand Harry and Blaise being 'submissives' but not George. It proved you couldn't judge a sweet by its looks...

"Fred! Focus. I need ideas for a date with Harry. What does he like best?"

Fred sighed, "I didn't know he liked cooking until he told us after the Quidditch match at dinner. I suppose the amount of time he spent watching Molly cook, I should have guessed but George and I were usually locked in our room inventing. He loves to play Quidditch. He's received Quidditch Through the Ages for Christmas one year. He loves Chocolate. We've watched him practically orgasm over chocolate fudge, Honeydukes chocolate bars and Mu…Molly's fudge. He only really knows how to cook the Muggle way; but looking back he seemed interested in Wizarding cooking. He would probably prefer to cook for you and your future kids rather then letting the house elves do that. He has this pained look when he gets asked to clean anything, so I think he really, really hates cleaning so I doubt he'd protest much about letting elves clean."

"So something to do with Quidditch, chocolate, or cooking. I think I can work with this." He summoned his personal elf Dreca.

She appeared at once. "Yes young master?"

Draco smirked, "I would like to ask a favour of you. My consort, Harry would like it if you would allow him use of the kitchens. He would like to cook. He knows that it is something you take pride in and would hate to upset you dreadfully but wishes that you would grant him a small space to cook."

"He being a wizard…he can't use magic out of school. How he be cooking young master?" the poor elf looked perplexed.

"Harry was raised by Muggles, he doesn't know magical cooking. He'd like to learn though. Perhaps, he could show you his way and you could teach him yours. If the other elves would be agreeable of course, I'd hate to hurt his feelings. He seemed quite upset when I told him he wouldn't have to cook again, he said he enjoyed it…I'd like to see if that was true." Draco said politely.

"If young master is certain of this…we would be quite dismayed to hurt Harry Potter's feelings. He won't be freeing anymore elves?"

Draco shook his head, "He understands though he freed Dobby from his mistress' service that he might have done Dobby a disservice since he had forgotten what his people cherish most."

His elf looked satisfied, "I'll relay your request. Manor kitchen large. Perhaps, we can find a small corner to let him cook. Our Lord and Master has no objection?"

Draco shook his head, "He seemed to be indulgent that Harry wished to cook despite his terrible experience."

The poor elf was stricken, "Terrible experience?"

"You remember how terrible your former mistress treated you all especially Dobby?" Draco asked gently.

His elf nodded shivering, "Most of us tried not to be near enough to call. Perhaps was cruel to leave Dobby to serve her alone."

"Harry was treated as bad if not worse then Dobby by his relations. He was forced to cook and clean, he was beaten and starved if he failed in his tasks."

Dreca was outraged, "Harry Potter wizard sir! Wizard not supposed to be treated or punished like a House Elf. We sure be finding some place for your consort to cook. Dreca promise young Master. When Harry Potter want to cook?"

"Why not dinner? I think he'll want to think what he wants to make. I'm sure he'll rely his wishes through Dobby. He isn't as familiar with you. That would be alright, won't it?"

Dreca sighed, "Dobby not get along well with other elves since he freed. He forget his place young master. He want paying. We House Elves not need such things. He forget his honour and his duty. If his new master wishes him to relay message, we will listen. Would be okay to still make dinner? Or let Harry Potter cook all?"

Draco wasn't sure how edible Muggle cooking was and hated to hurt Harry's feelings. "Perhaps, if Harry and the elves made the same meal we could see if there is a difference in taste between magical cooking and Muggle cooking. I am sure that your recipes are far more ancient and we're accustomed to its flavours." Draco was trying to avoid hurting either's feelings.

Fred would have laughed but knew that was disrespectful. He let Draco attempt to reassure his elf who functioned as a nurse, nanny and 'man' servant to Draco throughout his life.

Dreca nodded, "I'll see that all is arranged. We wait for instructions from Harry Potter sir."

The elf vanished.

Draco smirked, "I think we'll go into Honeydukes and Zonko's, I'll let Harry choose as much candy as he wants. He's already eaten through what you bought him." Then Draco realized something, "After being conned out of your lifesaving by Bagman, you spent all you earned since September 1st on chocolate for Harry?"

Fred looked sheepish, "Yeah. It seemed the honourable thing to do after we behaved so abominably."

"How much product did you give him? It looked like a far amount. You lost a lot of money."

Fred sighed, naming a sum.

Draco's eyes widened, he hadn't realized they'd parted with so much to prove their desire to make up for their small bout of disloyalty to Harry due to shock likely. He'd known the approximately cost of the chocolate having purchased some himself or watched Vince and Greg buy vast amounts of candy and sweets. He summoned a bag from his trunk that was refilled every week by Dreca from a sum that his father left out for him. He held it out, "A sum of twenty Galleons, eighty-five Sickles and three hundred Knuts."

Fred tried to protest.

"It's not charity. I'm investing in your shop- whatever it's called. You've hired on two of my fellow snakes and one, a companion from childhood who apart from you would have little chance of a future career. Despite your joke about hiring them to work for free you could not allow them to sell your products in Slytherin without paying them something for their efforts. Besides, this is pocket money, a weekly allowance. As the son of a Lord, if your presumed mother didn't clear out your father's vaults and spend all his inheritance, you'll receive something upon your seventeenth birthday as will George. Although, his might be sooner considering that he will most likely be legally bonded before the end of the school year. He'll probably be moving out of the Tower and into one of the apartments that Hogwarts has for Bonded couples. Not sure how Viktor's Highmaster will feel about that but I'm sure that my fathers will have little to say against it. As for your Head of House, she'll be too distracted with Moody to pay attention."

"I wondered why she was so cold. Being legally separated from your Bondmate might do it. She must have really cared about Moody. It's a bit disturbing that a person we thought was rather cool was a Death Eater and one of the creeps who attacked Neville's parents. Poor bloke, that Crouch guy must have been crazy."

Draco shrugged, "Azkaban can do that to you I've heard." Again, he was grateful his father had gotten off. Contrary to some people's opinion, his dad hadn't joined the ranks of the Death Eaters of his own free will. Unlike Severus, his papa joined to try to safe guard his dad from people like his mad ex-Aunt Bellatrix.

"So you're taking Harry to Hogsmeade to buy sweets. Then what?" Fred was a bit curious.

"I think we'll try that new restaurant Orchid. See if it’s as good as its review in the Daily Prophet. About time Hogmeade had a place more high class then The Three Broomsticks, The Hogshead, Brews and Stews, Madam Puddlefoot's and the like. Harry deserves better then Three Broomsticks or Brews and Stews. He maybe a submissive but I wouldn't insult him by taking him to Madam Puddlefoot's, the place is too frilly and pink. I wouldn't be caught in a place like that." Draco shivered at the revolting thought.

Fred sighed, "I did make my feelings for Angelina clear by introducing her to …Papa. But I'm a bit too broke to take her anywhere since I've never really had an allowance. The only pocket money we got was whatever dad slipped us or what we made selling 'Weasleys' Wizard Wheezes'."

Draco smirked, "Well if you want to buy her something nice you have my investment. I will turn a blind eye just this once. You'll have to make sure that when you get your first allowance that you repay the amount you borrowed from my investment. Now George maybe visiting Viktor's family but Harry still needs his protectors. You're welcome to join us in Hogsmeade. I have a mind to invite our newly Appointed Queen Sophronia Prewett to join us. It might be a date for Harry and I but she can keep Greg company. It would be a step up for him to Bond to her. I quite approve of her, especially since she has none of the airs that Parkinson gave herself. It would be more of a group date and with the enemies Harry and I have incurred, going unaccompanied would be unwise. So it would be wise to go as a group. Yourself, Greg and Vince would still be responsible for making sure no one proved to be a threat to any of us."

Fred chuckled, "I can use a bit of this for something nice. It is nearly Christmas and though we're not officially betrothed, she does deserve an appropriate gift."

"You should ask her the colour of her Dress robes. After all, she will be your date I assume. Why don't you let her pick you out new dress robes? You can pay for them out of my loan. She can chose something that goes well with yours. I suspect that Viktor will not let George be seen in his secondhand wardrobe much longer. Its despicable how your so-called mother short-changed you on what should have been your birthright. As a Prewett and a Weasley, you shouldn't have had to dress in such things. "

"I'm sure Angelina would love to pick out my dress robes. Perhaps, she'll see something she'll like herself. Where would we go shopping?"

Draco looked at Fred in shock, "Why Rue de Lion of course. Someone of your lineage shouldn't wear anything less. I believe that Andre's would do fine. They are the best."

"Expensive aren't they?" Fred was a bit distressed.

"You wouldn't want to embarrass your fathers or grandparents by looking like something the Kneazel dragged in, do you?" Draco sighed, "I don't mean to be rude but you do wish to appear equal to the beauty you'll have on your arm?"

Fred sighed, "I'll trust your judgement. I just don't want to appear poncy…"

Draco clasped his shoulder in a friendly sort of manner, "Never. I just want to make sure you do yourself, your intended and your family honour at the Yule Ball. Appearance and first impressions are important. This is the first time she'll see you in finery. She'll be prompted to imagining your Bonding Ceremony, you'll want her to imagine yourself in proper attire, do you not?"

Fred nodded, a grin stealing across his face. "Of course." It was hard to really think about himself being bonded to one girl; after all he'd made quite a name for himself as a playboy. He was the bad boy, the delinquent who most witches secretly desired. He did feel a bit bad about stealing Lee Jordan's dream girl. He hoped that he could set him up with Alicia or Katie. Katie had sadly had carried a torch for Oliver despite him being three years older then her and couldn't have been interested in her sexually if she stripped in front of him. Since his type was Percy, the poor girl would probably made him ill or at least very uncomfortable.

Draco, his mind quite made up on the subject proceeded to bully Vince and Greg out of bed. Ordering them to get dressed, he wanted them to talk Tracy and Sophronia into going on a group date with them to Hogsmeade. It would do Mafalda some good, despite being a Third Year he had yet to see her leave the castle on Hogsmeade Weekends but he'd been a bit full of himself in September and as for October, he hadn't paid much attention due to the excitement over the possibilities of Hogwarts Champion. He'd hoped for a Slytherin, preferably Adrian Pucey but he'd have settled for Warrington sadly. Normally, Hogsmeade was only every two months but this year it was monthly due to their guests. Probably, an effort to make up for the lack of quidditch...

Greg shyly slipped out to go ask someone to see if their Lady Sophronia, Queen of Slytherin was awake and if she would allow him an audience.

Vince proceeded to track down Tracy.

Fred slipped out to go ask Angelina if she'd like to go on a real date, trusting Charlie to stick around for a bit. His brother better be careful, Blaise was a decent bloke but he seemed to have set his cap after his rugged dragon tamer brother.

Draco let Harry sleep some more; he'd wake him soon. Breakfast ran from eight to ten on Saturdays and Hogsmeade weekends began at half past ten anyway. It wasn't quite a quarter to nine so Harry had time. He went to have a possibly uncomfortable talk with Theo. With Greg ignoring Parkinson in favour of the Queen of Slytherin that left poor Theo without anyone. He couldn't allow a childhood friend to look foolish by not having a date to the Yule Ball. He'd know for sometime that Theo's father was abusive, he'd covered for Theo a time or two when he'd had a rather dreadful nightmare, he'd slip his friend healing and pain potions during the summer so no one would guess. His father had promised to do something for Theo by New Year's.

How Old Nott could choose someone like Millicent who was more Beater then lady as the future Lady Nott was ridiculous. She'd make Theo epicly miserable; besides, he was suspicious that Millicent was in a relationship with Greg's older sister Giselle. It was hard to tell since they were in different years but Greg and Giselle's father was good friends with Millicent's bearer Malcolm. They had been in the same year when they were students. If Greg didn't decide to bond with Millicent, a Bonding between Giselle and Millicent might not prove a poor match. After all, if Greg stated his future intention to bond with the only daughter of Lord Prewett, Queen of Slytherin; his sister's bonding might be approved but he was thinking ahead too much. Poor Theo so abused by his father, he fell for the only person who was truly kind to him.

Draco's patience could wear thin and as much as he valued Greg's friendship after a fashion, the constant help he needed to not fail could be tiresome. Theo's need for a shoulder to cry on and potions was also rather daunting. It was Blaise who noticed his withdrawn behaviour as well as his flinching and brought it to his attention. Investigation had proved that Theo's father actually beat his son. It wasn't until this summer at the Quidditch World Cup that Draco learned to his horror that Theo had been forced to his father's bed. He hadn't had a chance until a few weeks ago to tell his dad, he hadn't tried all that hard knowing that it would be some time before Theo's dad could have access to Theo. He opened Theo's curtains, politely knocking on Theo's bedpost and calling out softly, "Theo? You up?"

He'd been neglecting his childhood playmate, he had noticed how hurt Theo had been when Blaise nonchalantly announced he wasn't attracted to any person in Slytherin House but was attracted to boys. He'd jokingly claimed that George was his type and playfully asked him to consider being his date to the Yule Ball. Although, George who was obviously smitten with Viktor had accepted the Durmstrang Champion's invitation to be his date, Blaise hadn't said anything to discourage that.

Theo sat up quickly, shaking, "I'm awake!"

Draco sighed, "It's just me, Draco. I wanted us to talk."

Theo shifted nervously, "Oh…"

Draco gestured slowly at the foot of Theo's green velvet bedspread, "May I?"

Theo nodded slowly.

Draco cast a privacy charm so they couldn't be overheard. "First off, I want to apologize for not speaking before. Like I promised, despite your objections, I spoke to my fathers; about your home life. Papa, our Head of House was quite distraught that he hadn't realized things were so bad. He had hoped that his relationship with his snakes was that of a reliable adult. It seemed he had such a father when he was young. Dad promised that he should do his best to see that your father cannot hurt you again. I know how distraught you are that Blaise can't be attracted to you as you wish. He wouldn't like me to tell you this but because he is Chuvash and most likely a submissive if he were to pursue a relationship with you, he would be sacrificing his fertility. A Chuvash submissive can never sleep with a human without becoming infertile. His mother can never have children; following the death of her Chuvash mate, she reportedly claimed she would never have another Dominant. Blaise can never have another sibling because she takes wizard Bondmates that have no Chuvash blood."

Theo was shaken to the core, not only had Draco told about his disastrous home life, he had to hear that if his beloved Blaise was his, that Blaise could never have children? He seemed to deflate… a feat that should have been near impossible for he was a tall boy.

Tall boy Theo that was but he was also weak, his spirit had been nearly broken by his abuse.

Draco sighed, "I know Millicent is not your type and with good reason. I know it hurts to see Blaise trying to get Fred and George's older brother's attention but if he has to be with a Dominant Chuvash, could we find someone who is a better person then Charlie Weasley? He is a good, kind person who seems open-minded enough to put aside every bad thing he'd heard about Slytherins and get to know us. We want our friends to have decent people to Bond with. Pansy would be terrible for anyone but maybe Marcus Flint, I wouldn't really want her for Greg. She'd make him miserable. I don't want you to go to the Ball alone. Is there anyone else you'd consider going with?"

Heart-sore, Theo shook his head.

Draco had a thought so he summoned Dobby.

Dobby sighed, "How can Dobby serve Harry Potter sir's Draco?"

Draco rolled his eyes, "Can you do me a favour? I want you to go to Ravenclaw and find my cousin. Bring her here if you can. I'd like to ask her if she would consider something."

Dobby bowed and disappeared with a pop.

Theo looked confused, "You have a cousin? I didn't know that. A Ravenclaw cousin? I thought all Malfoys were Slytherins?"

Draco laughed, "They are however, her mother was a Ravenclaw. She is a Ravenclaw like her mother and a Veela like myself."

Before he finished speaking, Dobby had returned with Luna.

Draco sighed, "You can remove the Glamour cousin. My housemate won't break a confidence."

Luna gave a musical laugh; her flightily aura and normal appearance disappeared. Her appearance from the previous day at the First Task when she spoke as the Seer of the Veela Queen and the audience with her Queen appeared in its place. She held out her hand to Theo, "Luna Athena Lovegood. My father and Draco's father are cousins; unlike Lucius, my father was not a Veela. Yet he is a pure of heart as one could be."

Theo had never seen a girl so beautiful, blushing terribly as he took her hand.

Luna's eyes closed, tears fell down her cheeks, "Oh no…" she placed her hand on Theo's chest, "I can't take the memories away but I can do this for you." Light flowed from her hand, surrounding Theo's thin form.

Draco watched his first experience with Veela healing; he knew instinctively what she was doing.

It was a full seven minutes before Luna removed her hand from Theo's chest, "I healed the damage done to your soul. As well as other injuries." Too shy to embarrass the abused boy by explaining what she healed. "Despite your memories, it is as if you've never been injured."

Theo was a softhearted person despite his terrible upbringing; he'd fallen for Luna immediately.

Luna saw that and her heart ached for him, not because she shared his love but because her existence was a lonely one. Her Mate, her other half was not born. Her magic had sacrificed that so that she could have her Seer abilities and be an awakened Veela since birth. Upon her birth, the Veela Queen had been aware of her, tracking her growing into her powers. She was nearly eight when she entered the Queen's service, with her mother perishing soon after. To protect her, her parents had chosen to set themselves apart from their neighbours; the Diggorys and the Weasleys.

Theo asked stammering, "Would you please come to the Yule Ball with me?"

Luna locked eyes with Draco, her Veela allowing her to communicate with him telepathically. 'Do you realize what you've done? You've only managed to exchange one heartache for another. He can't have Blaise because he's clearly meant for someone else. I'm not meant for anyone.'

"'Tell me where is says that!' Draco smirked at her, 'Yes you're powerful, but who says you can't have love? You both lost your mothers young. You unlike him have a father who adores you enough to keep you away from the likes of Dumbledore. I can't see you being capable of doing better then Theo. You maybe the daughter of Xenos Malfoy, now known as Xeno Lovegood but I don't see why you can't let someone take care of you. Theo wouldn't truly bother you much. He'd try to make things as pleasant as possible for you. Besides, he never has to tell you about his past. You saw it. You already know. You are incapable of judging him. You healed his soul to prevent the damage from poisoning his spirit. Not just anyone would do that for someone whose father might have murdered his mother and who is clearly insane but somehow avoided Azkaban.'

Luna had empathy for the boy but wasn't sure that would be enough, she wasn't sure her gifts would allow her to even consider it.

Draco sighed, 'Give him a chance. Go to the Yule Ball with him. Come with us and let me buy you dress robes. I'm begging you cousin. He's never dared ask anyone out. Don't turn him down. Give him a chance.'

Luna broke the mental connection, the conversation taking less time then the time of three heartbeats. She smiled, "I would love to be your date to the Yule Ball. Being a Third Year I can't attend unless I go with an older student. I find I would like to attend but I would prefer to go as I normally appear but I promise not to wear my radish earrings or Butterbeer cork necklace."

Theo smiled at the slim girl who resembled Draco so much, it was a wonder he hadn't noticed they were cousins. Luna could be his childhood playmate's little sister…

Luna glanced at Draco, "So cousin, when are we going shopping? I expect you'll pick me out a flattering dress robe."

Draco laughed, "I'm treating you and Sophronia as well. I can't have her look less then her status at the Yule Ball. She is a cousin of a sort being a Black. You are a Malfoy cousin; if you are going with my friends, you must go with as much style as you can. I offer you the finest Dress robes at Celestine's to choose from."

Luna blushed, "Cousin you do know how to spoil a girl."

Draco laughed, "You're going with us on a group date. We're leaving at a quarter to eleven to head into Hogsmeade. I want to purchase Harry chocolate."

"A gift he will no doubt appreciate." Luna teased, summoning her own house elf, "Cici, I would like to return to Ravenclaw Tower. I'll see you. I may choose a different Glamour. Luna would be too recognizable. I think 'Thena would be an appropriate pseudonym. Look for a girl with strawberry blonde hair and silver eyes wearing a blue Ravenclaw muffler and silver gloves. Although I do like my ice blonde, I would hate to draw Dumbledore's attention." Luna bent to kiss Theo's cheek before her house elf disappeared with her.

Theo hugged Draco impulsively, "You're the best! I've got to get ready for my first date."

Draco waited for Theo to let go before leaving him, he was glad his vague impression that Theo wasn't really bent but flexible had been rather astute. His dormmate seemed rather attracted to his cousin, while not having a destined mate didn't mean she couldn't find happiness. He only hoped his nudge wouldn't bring them both heartache. At least Luna had seen fit to heal the damage to Theo's soul, Draco had planned to do that himself but he wouldn't come into his Inheritance for two summers. His plan for the day falling into place he was about to wake Harry when he spotted Blaise, with the sheer size of the group he suspected he'd need more then one chaperone, his father would no doubt be busy doing things he didn't want to know about. He turned to wake Charlie instead, Blaise better be grateful for this. He knocked on Blaise's bedpost, "Charlie?"

Charlie woke groggily, "Yeah?"

"It's Draco, I was hoping to ask you a favour."

Charlie opened the Slytherin green bed curtain, "Sure, I can at least listen."

"Well, I'm putting together a group date since it's not safe for Harry or I to go alone. Fred has gone to invite Angelina to join us. I thought you'd want to keep an eye on him considering he's still under the authority of your House despite being of age. Especially, since I'll be talking Remus into letting us out of the country. I'm sure your fathers' won't too upset if you accompanied us." Draco was discussing it as a favour but all the while 'shaming' Charlie to accept.

Charlie didn't realize he was being manipulated to chaperone, he'd guessed something of Fred's sexual exploits and despite his apparent new leaf, he wasn't sure he trusted Fred in Paris, the City of Love with a clearly besotted Angelina Johnson. As long as he'd known her, she'd been sweet on his brother. Although he was glad Fred had woken up and decided to be a man by admitting his feelings and intentions. "I suppose I can. I'll dress and go speak the Head of the Preserve. He'll understand wishing to keep an eye on an underage brother. I've told him that my father is unwell and being Chuvash, family is quite important to him. I will also retrieve appropriate garments from my bag in the tent."

Draco could hardly believe how easy it was to convince Charlie to join them, "I shall let you dress. I must inform Blaise, he'll be accompanying us. His usual role as second will be revised, he'll join us a guard since your younger brother is away." Actually, he'd be on a date with Charlie not that the rather oblivious Chuvash would know.

Charlie nodded, "When will you be leaving?"

"We'll be meeting Theo and Fred's dates prior to a quarter to eleven." Draco politely told the Dominant Chuvash.

"Very well. I shall meet you about that time in the Entrance Hall."

Draco withdrew to conspire with Blaise, who would not doubt wish to dress in his most flattering clothes to entice Charlie. As he approached the fire, his eyes fell on shy Neville Longbottom who was also Charlie's second cousin as was Sophronia. Perhaps, it wouldn't do to leave him behind since aside from Harry, he seemed friendless. Adrian would most likely prefer to leave Hogwarts and avoid most people due to the House's reaction to his new status. It wasn't every day that a King of Slytherin was revealed much less by a personage such as the King of the Chuvash. It would be like revealing to the Ravenclaw Tower that someone of Rowena's blood was present. Draco smirked, shaking Neville awake.

Neville woke at once and found himself in the now familiar Fourth Year Slytherin dorm, "Oh hi Draco." It was shocking how since Harry's return to Hogwarts, his former tormentor had become almost a protector and perhaps, an almost friend.

"I was wondering if you would do me a favour. It would be most rude of me to personally interrupt the King of Slytherin's rest but perhaps you would do me the service of delivering a message?" Draco asked, certain the boy who was unusually drawn to Adrian would jump at the opportunity.

Neville blushed and sputtered, "You…want me…to…deliver a message to your King?" he was pleased that he would be trusted. He was after all a Lion, a rival…

"A few of us are planning to head into Hogsmeade together and later do some shopping in Paris. Perhaps, if he had no plans he might consider joining us. If you would like to join us, I have no problem with it." Knowing Neville would no doubt agree at once, "If you are worried about your Gran disapproving, I'm sure she wouldn't. Considering that your cousin Charlie is chaperoning. His Grandmother and your great grandmother were sisters and the Longbottoms and the Weasleys have been friends time out of mind."

Neville jumped out of bed, hurrying to dress, "I'll tell him."

He was not the chubby, round-faced boy with two left feet that he'd been in first year when Draco had been young and immature so he'd enjoyed tormenting him. He'd grown some, gaining some muscle from trudging all over the castle and helping out Professor Sprout often. He'd grown into his looks and was almost cute but not in the same manner as his Harry. Draco turned to wake Blaise, since Charlie had left. Only Blaise and Harry were still sleeping. Theo was dressing for his date with Luna, while Fred, Greg and Vince were trying to convince their girls to go on a date with them.

Blaise was soon sleepily glancing around because he was in an unfamiliar bed.

"You gave your desired Dominant your bed." Draco said quickly, leaning close hoping Neville wouldn't hear. Not considering of course that Neville was distracted, Adrian was rather good looking and had Draco been more interested in the Keeper role he couldn't do worse then Adrian Pucey as his Chaser.

Blaise saw his curtains open and the bed empty, he moaned in dismay.

Draco tugged him to his feet, "I have no time for such behaviour. I have some matter of importance I wish to discuss with my second."

The seemingly harsh rebuke did its job and Blaise reluctantly composed himself, "My apologies my Prince."

Draco snorted, "I need a few minutes conference before I wake my consort who is still, thank Salazar sleeping soundly."

Blaise followed Draco towards his own bed, he sat cross-legged clutching a pillow to his chest and breathing in the scent the Dominant Chuvash had left behind.

"Oh please pay attention." Draco groaned, "Or I shall be quite annoyed."

Blaise pouted, "Oh very well. Speak."

Draco restrained himself from rolling his eyes; "I've decided to take Harry out on a date. Circumstances being what they are, we can't go on a date by ourselves. I would be remiss as your Prince and your friend to not notice how unusually attached you have become to Charlie Weasley. Although he seems to not notice or merely humours you, yet he seems unable to deny you much. I asked him since Fred is accompanying us first to Hogsmeade and then to Paris if he might consent to join us as a second chaperone. He agreed. I gave him the impression,"

Blaise's cry of joy interrupted Draco but he felt no shame. Paris? With Charlie? He owed Draco greatly. "My apologies, the thought of Paris with Charlie excites me."

"I can tell," Draco said dryly. "Perhaps, you ought to have Amry take you home and dress you appropriately for your date. Although he is unaware that he will prove to be your companion for the day. Do not monopolize his attentions. You are both coming as guards of sorts."

Blaise hugged him impulsively, "You're the bestest friend I've every had. I love you like a brother." He'd never had a brother but he hoped that if he had they would have been very much like Draco."

"Now go! You Keepers take forever to get ready!" Draco teased leaving his second to summon his House Elf as he headed to wake Harry. He sat beside his mate, kicking off his slippers and running the pad of his thumb over Harry's face, tracing the curve of his jaw and the adorable Cupid's bow lips. "Wake up love."

Harry woke losing himself in those silver eyes, "Dray?" he said sleepily.

Draco leaned over to kiss him, "Morning. It's a Hogsmeade Weekend. I thought perhaps, you'd like to go a date. I can't promise something small an intimate, considering our enemies so I invited our friends and their dates. I hope you don't mind. I decided our first stop would be Honeydukes and all the chocolate you want. Perhaps, Zonko's in cause you want some things there."

Harry wrapped his arms around Draco's neck and kissed him, clearly excited, "Date? You want to take me on a date? Honeydukes? Chocolate?" he didn't care what else Draco had planned, he was buying him chocolate! Yet another reason to love Draco! Having never been allowed sweets at the Dursleys, he'd fallen in love with Fortescue ice cream and Wizarding candy thinking it all quite exotic. The only sweets he remembered prior to his Eleventh birthday was the Knickerbocker Glory that Dudley once ordered but hadn't come with enough ice cream so Aunt Petunia ordered him another and let Harry have the unwanted Knickerbocker Glory.

Draco kissed him back, "We're also going shopping in Paris. I thought we might find a nice set of complimentary dress robes."

"Oh!" Harry said with a start, "I already have some. Mrs. Weas…I mean Ms. Prewett picked me up some while we were off at the World Cup. They're bottle green…"

Draco said haughtily, "I'm sure they wouldn't be as appropriate as the one's we'll find for you. I don't need another pair but choosing robes that would compliment my own, I will pick out for you I am sure that Remus wouldn't object. After all, he'd want to do his duty as guardian and pick up a robe for you. We might have to make a stop at Gringotts anyway. I'll want to withdraw money from my personal vault. Until you're of age, Remus is supposed to agree to money withdrawals unless he arranges for you have a single vault available for you like father has with me. I don't often need money from my vault but shopping in Paris would count as one."

Harry snuggled, a date? With the most handsome, richest boy in Hogwarts? How did he get so lucky? His mother must be looking out for him, surely she'd approve of the real Draco. After all Severus her best friend was his papa and they'd been good friends. No doubt she'd have liked that her son and his would become mates. He doubted his father would be pleased and neither would his godfather but being with Draco kept away the nightmares. Draco had ended the curse that brought on his nightmares at Hogwarts by rolling them out of bed and his mate's magic had in a fit of rage burned the curse away.

Draco was content to hold Harry for a while; they'd get ready soon. It was just after nine now…they had a few minutes before needing to dress for the day.

 

 

Chapter Text

Chapter 24

Severus noticed the dark, decrepit look sneaking up on the Crouch residence as they had Apparated to the very edge of the wards. He sensed some powerful wards that would warn the inhabitants of visitors and silently weaved magic to 'remind' the wards that it remembered him and his companion. He locked down the wards to a point that it would allow none of the current inhabitants to leave peacefully. Until he released them anyone trying to leave would find themselves receiving a nasty shock for trying. He gestured for Lucius to stick close as possible as they made their way to the front entrance.

Wands leaping from their holsters to their hands.

Lucius wasn't keen on Severus' lead and gestured for him to move behind him.

Severus glared and vigorously shook his head.

Lucius sighed, gesturing that they would open the door and enter side-by side.

Severus shrugged and nodded.

The door opened slowly.

Inside the Crouch house was dusty, it remembered Severus sharply of Spinner's End.

Apparently, Crouch was worse off having freed Winky, having found his household comfort much less without her.

There was the sound of shuffling feet.

Severus thought it was familiar as he cast a notice-me-not charm.

Lucius followed suit, hiding himself.

Out of a dark dusty hallway came the familiar features of one Peter Pettigrew.

Severus' lips curled in hatred, his facial expression not unlike Sirius Black's when facing Pettigrew in Harry's memory.

Before Severus could do something he'd live to regret, Lucius absently spun a spell of his own swift creation that would prevent Pettigrew from escaping. He also cast a silent Incarcerous that would leave Pettigrew quite permanently restrained until he turned him over to Aurors.

Severus would have been furious at Lucius but he was also grateful, he hadn't quite been sure he'd be able to control himself if he truly raised his wand against the man responsible for betraying his friend Lily to her regrettable Death.

Lucius left Pettigrew tied up and stiff as a board under the full body bind curse. He reached for Severus' hand, squeezing it as they went looking for Crouch and their former lord.

They found a room whose door bore many locks though only one was in use.

Severus uses a weak spell that identified magical echoes. He mouthed the name Crouch to his Bondmate.

Lucius nodded.

Severus more in control now that Pettigrew was restrained and quite unable to escape used a rare spell to unlock the door.

They slowly entered the dark room.

Both silently lit the tips of their wands with Lumos.

Inside chained to a bed was Barty Crouch Sr. Head of the Ministry Department of Internal Relations. He was weak, ill and clearly suffering.

Lucius loosened his chains some, no keen on releasing him.

Severus conjured a cup and using a water spell filled it.

Lucius helped the man sit up.

Severus held the water to his lips, and the man drank greedily.

"Let me out. I'll reward you handsomely."

Severus shook his head, "I am sorry Crouch. I wish I could but the proper thing would be to turn you over to the Aurors. Someone must explain how your son escaped Azkaban."

"You know?" the man asked, his eyes a bit wild. He lunged for a wand.

Lucius in turn cast the Incarcerous on him. "Yes. We surmised you removed your son from Azkaban, switching him with your ill wife. You hid him here. Somehow Bertha Jorkins who worked for you a while back discovered your secret. You damaged her mind in an attempt to make her forget. You've been worried since she disappeared that someone might be able to uncover your secret. We'll only made a few guesses with the small amount of evidence we had. Pettigrew must have run into Jorkins who recognized him. He brought her to the Dark Lord who extracted both your secret as well other Ministry plans. Knowing a servant remained free enough not renounce him, he and Pettigrew showed up here. They subdued you and released your son. Hatching a plan that no doubt included Harry's name ending up in the Cup. Pettigrew stayed here to keep and eye on you and tend to the Dark Lord. Barty left late August 31st; he subdued Moody somehow leaving him alive to use his hair to the Polyjuice potion. Considering he'd made some noise he set of the dustbins to cause a greater commotion and to make Moody look as mad as ever so no one would suspect a switch had been made. He then took Moody's place as an instructor at Hogwarts. Am I right?"

Crouch looked almost murderous.

Severus nodded sadly, "You had the right idea but I'm afraid the wrong target. It is with great reluctance that we will have to have over Moody and both Bartimus Crouches for your son has already-been placed in a cell in the bowels of the Ministry. A great blow for the Wizarding World that a person such as yourself should be soon to join him."

Lucius unlocked the shackles having already used the Incarcerous to restrain Crouch and then levitated him out of the room and dumped beside Pettigrew.

Glancing at Lucius, Severus swallowed, now came the hard part: locating the Dark Lord and living to tell about it. No doubt their former master would be angry with them for not seeking him out sooner.

 

XoooooX

 

Despite her supposed vacation, Dora arrived early around nine at the Ministry, making her way to Head Auror Scrimgour's office to make a report of her arrests.

"Come in Tonks." Came the voice.

Dora had reluctantly chosen a less flamboyant appearance, copying her mother's raven tresses and her father's eyes. "Yes sir."

"I thought you were on vacation." The lion-hair man grumbled at her.

Dora resisted a smirk, "I was but when I realized that I had an escaped prisoner and a possibly kidnapped individual I was the only Auror present. I did the expedient thing I took Barty Crouch into custody. Delivering him to cells. Then I returned at once to Hogwarts where I discovered that the real Moody was being cared for by Healer Smythe and Mind Healer Tonks. It was their medical determination that Moody was quite ill and needed care. The very strong potion being used to combat his pneumonia if mixed with Veritaserum would convert to poison. He is currently in the Janus Thickey ward. I stood guard all night until Kingsley came to relieve me so I might report to you. You see sir he was under a powerful Imperious and though Crouch is not a reliable witness he claimed that Moody sometimes cried out about his hands being covered with innocent blood." she swallowed, "I know you would disapprove sir but I have under my mother's supervision being investigating how the abuse our Saviour suffered might have been overlooked. In the course of my investigation I discovered rather…unsettling things."

Scrimgour seemed torn at her admission of her investigations outside her duties as an Auror and her alluding to unsettling things. He attempted to appear bored, when he was quite interested.

"That Harry's name was indeed planted in the cup and the boy had nothing to do with it. Crouch did it while masquerading as Moody." Dora said quietly after casting spells that blinded all recording devices and spells, "Might I speak frankly sir?"

Scrimgour appraised her and then granted his consent with a nod.

Dora crossed her arms, "I need to know sire how loyal you are to Headmaster Dumbledore."

Scrimgour stared at her, "Why would that matter?"

"Because I have uncovered evidence so appalling that I can barely believe it, if Skeeter were to discover it Dumbledore's name would be mud."

Scrimgour scoffed, Skeeter was ridiculous. "How true was her article yesterday about Molly Weasley?"

"Prewett. Her Bonding to Arthur is invalid. I gave her that information. Not as myself of course but I have been quietly passing information as seemed appropriate to Auror Shacklebolt. Especially after Lord Weasley insisted that Shacklebolt investigate Ms. Prewett. I discovered what a manipulative woman she was on Wednesday. Monday I was shocked to discover that one of her brothers Gideon was alive. He was imprisoned in his own home. He was previously held against his will to separate him from Arthur Weasley in the House that later was the home of the Potters in hiding. It was steeped in tragedy. Not only were Auror James Potter and his wife killed there so was Dumbledore's sister and mother. Fabian Prewett apparently discovered his brother's kidnapping and went to rescue him. Some time after their escape they ran into Dolohov and a duel ensued. Gideon was too weak to duel forcing Fabian to duel to protect them. Dumbledore admitted he sent Moody to retrieve Gideon and if necessary kill Fabian. Fabian saw a Fellow Order member and Auror thinking himself saved, didn't expect to be struck down by a spell when his guard was down. Dolohov escaped, Moody apparently killed one of the Death Eaters and transfigured his face to resemble Gideon's. Covering the man with his invisibility cloak he summoned Order members to remove the bodies. That is one crime Moody should be questioned eventually about."

"Moody? I know he'd a bit crazy but he's a hero to most." Scrimgour was shocked.

"Which is why at present he is being guarded because he's a former Auror. He was kidnapped and we're waiting for his health to improve so we can question him. If Moody the most cautious of us all can be kidnapped what chance to any of us have?" Dora asked almost defiantly.

"Very well. I'll leave the Dumbledore case to you. You are officially on vacation but I expect reports all the same." Scrimgour glowered.

"No problem. I would ask to be present when Molly Prewett is questioned under Veritaserum. I promise what she'll tell you will be most disturbing." Dora said drolly.

"How disturbing is this information you discovered regarding Dumbledore?" Scrimgour asked.

Dora snorted, "His father murdered at least three Muggle boys for attacking his sister who never recovered. His mother moved and hid her away. I met their cousin quite by chance, who admitted the sad tale. She believed I was a researcher working for a noted columnist who wished to write an in depth book about Dumbledore holding nothing back. I heavily implied it was Skeeter. Lord Malfoy agreed should I turn up anything interesting, that my files be given to Skeeter to write a book exposing the real Albus Dumbledore." She shivered, "I didn't expect to find a man so…evil…"

Scrimgour stared at her, "Evil?"

"He placed an orphaned wizard with Magic Hating Muggles who beat and staved him. They treated him worse then some people treat their house elves. I heard him admit it. I have the memory copied and labelled as well as memories of abuse suffered by Harry Potter at their hands. Dumbledore allowed danger to come to the students at Hogwarts. He kidnapped Gideon Prewett andordered the death of Fabian. Assisted Molly Prewett into tricking Arthur into Bonding to her despite a soulbond to her own brother. He also attempted memory charms and Amortentia to force Arthur Weasley to fall in love with Molly Prewett rather then Gideon Prewett. Those mostly failed, Arthur couldn't sleep with her. Unknown to Arthur despite Molly's claim to be pregnant with his child it was really Gideon who was pregnant with Bill. Dumbledore with probably Poppy's help delivered Gideon's son, taking the baby boy away and pretending Molly had gone into labour. They named him William Weasley consulting neither father. When Arthur failed to sleep with Molly and get her pregnant they allowed him to see Gideon long enough to get him pregnant. The memory spells locking away the memories, Gideon carried Charlie to term and thus it happened that Molly continued filing false birth certificates listing herself as bearer when William, Charles, Percival, Frederick and George were truly the sons of Gideon Prewett rather then Molly." Dora said a bit peeved no one noticed some of the unscrupulous things Dumbledore had done.

"Anything else?"

Dora smirked, "Not only was his father a Muggle Killer, Dumbledore's first serious relationship was with the most unexpected person. I have three persons who would attest to this."

"Don't make me guess Auror Tonks." Scrimgour snarled.

"The Dark Lord Grindelwald." Dora said dramatically.

"You're…joking." Scrimgour could hardly believe his ears.

"You really believe that he would be able to waltz in and subdue him so easily?" Dora was surprised how naïve that some people could be.

"No...how did they even meet?"

Dora chuckled, "Apparently, the Dumbledores' neighbour Ms. Bagshot was his Aunt or at least some relation. She is still living and is rather sharp for her years but her housekeeping is dreadful. She has pictures of a young Albus Dumbledore with her nephew Gellert. She had such hopes for them. Had expected them to end up betrothed by the end of that summer. Unfortunately a duel occurred between Grindelwald, Albus and Aberforth. Their mad sister was dead, Albus was left nearly catatonic and Grindelwald fled. Aberforth blamed Albus for their sister's death. Their cousin believed Aberforth loved her more then was healthy. Even attacked Albus at the funeral, their sister died mere months from their mother's death. Their mother's sudden death prevented Albus from embarking on his 'Grand Tour' and left him ill-prepared to look after a crazy sister and a dim-witted brother."

"Merlin! Are you entirely sure of this Auror?"

Dora nodded, "Quite sure Head Auror. Dumbledore made rather pointed statements about various people who perished during the war. He even made threats regarding Madam Bones. He wanted her to die like the rest of her family. He was upset that her youngest brother had escaped the massacre due to his being across the pond studying. He made an odd statement about the circumstances regarding the McKinnons. He also claimed responsibility for the Longbottoms becoming a target. He hated them for not joining his precious Order and being proMinistry. He manufactured a memo that heavily implied that the Aurors had captured He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named and were holding him in secret. It felt into the expected hands and rogue…Death Eaters eliminated the Longbottoms. Although both my mother and Lord Malfoy claim that Bellatrix was mad since Hogwarts and perhaps, should have been admitted to St. Mungos rather then Hogwarts."

"Frank was attacked because of a memo Dumbledore created?" Scrimgour was furious, "Frank Longbottom was one of that last Aurors I personally mentored."

"I doubt that Dumbledore informed you of this, I will be including it in my final report but a highly illegal Dark Spell was somehow cast inside Hogwarts on Harry Potter's bed." Dora looked sheepish, "Would have told you sooner but it was late and the curse was destroyed.'

"Auror!"

Dora winced, "It was the Night of Hell Curse!"

"What? That curse can't be just ended or destroyed. It must run its curse. Why curse the bed?"

Dora sighed, "I'm not as familiar with the curse, it was cast by someone quite adept at hiding their magical signature. Remus Lupin and Severus Snape discovered it. Harry Potter's mate summoned them when he was discovered to have a nightmare he couldn't be wakened from. Draco summoned his Head of House who was also his father and Harry's Guardian. They managed get to Harry after removing the charms he had on his bed. The sheer sound of his screams woke his dormmates; Neville Longbottom likened them to his mother's. Severus discovered the curse was cast on the bed and ordered his son Draco to get Harry off the bed. The boy launched them from it. Harry woke gasping and clung to him, terrified. Draco in a quite understandable rage at the attack on his mate had a burst of magic attack the Curse and burned it. Considering that he is expected to come into his inheritance as a Veela his reaction was reasonable. The bed was undamaged. To my knowledge, Dean Thomas, Neville Longbottom, Harry Potter and Seamus Finnigan have not slept there since. Thomas has been staying in the Fifth Year Boys' Dormitory and Seamus with the Third Year Boys'. Longbottom and Potter have been staying in the Slytherin dungeons with the Fourth Year Boys."

"Longbottoms and Potters in the Slytherin Dungeons?" Scrimgour was a bit shocked that a Potter would have a Malfoy for a mate. How could a family as Dark as Malfoy have Veela blood? It made no sense.

"Perhaps, we should privately question our prisoner? I informed only you and Shacklebolt about his identity. If Severus and Remus hadn't known him I might not have realized who he was." Dora said quickly.

"How was he revealed?"

Dora laughed, "It was actually quite funny. Ron found out about the Article about his mother and made up his mind to attack Harry. Harry had a snake familiar who has the ability to make herself invisible. She is only a constrictor not poisonous at all. When Ron tried to attack Harry, she leapt at her master's attacker and subdued him. He claimed he was attacked without provocation and insisted Harry be punished. Dumbledore chose to threaten Harry with expulsion and the destruction of his familiar."

Scrimgour stared, "Harry Potter was attacked and his snake only restrained his attacker? The Headmaster wanted to expel our saviour?"

Dora nodded, "It was the second time in a week he'd attacked Harry. The previous time he'd actually assaulted him. Shishreyu, Harry's snake claimed that the boy smelled of murder, that he wished to do serious harm to her master and she couldn't let him. After severe protests Dumbledore refused to listen. A Slytherin Fourth Year stepped between Dumbledore and Harry, coolly informing him he had not authority to punish Harry or his familiar for their punishment was outside his authority."

"I'll bet he didn't like that. Cheeky brat, I'll give him guts for telling off the Headmaster too bad it's not true."

"But it was sir. If it had been Draco threatened with punishment Dumbledore couldn't punish Draco without the Consent of the Veela Queen despite him not coming into his inheritance yet She knows her children. Blaise summoned the King of his Race, the race he and Harry belong to. Who told Dumbledore where to get off and informed him he was not to harm one hair on Harry's head. The Chuvash King proceeded to bless the descendants of his brother and those who were Chuvash. First he summoned them though, all but Crouch came willingly. He noticed Crouch quickly who tried to escape, his magic informed him for it is great that Crouch was wearing a face not his own. He strengthened his summons, Crouch's Grandmother was his niece or something making him quite related. He managed to negate the effects of the Polyjuice Potion or at least reverse it. In the process Moody's wooden leg and eye fell out. He started raving, Longbottom almost attacked him after finding out he was one of those responsible for attacking his parents."

"I thought Crouch denied the attack." Scrimgour was more and more disturbed by this report.

"I overheard Dumbledore bragging about imperioing him to say that and telling his father that no one not even his son should escape the law. Barty Jr. Crouch did in fact attack Francis and Alice Longbottom to get information regarding He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named's whereabouts. The information that the Lestranges and Crouch found was manufactured thus the Longbottoms especially Frank knew nothing." Dora hesitated to inform the Head Auror about the truth of Benjy Fenwick.

Scrimgour noticed, "What haven't you told me Auror!"

Dora winced, "Dumbledore claimed that Benjy Fenwick wasn't killed by Death Eaters. For what use or means do Death Eaters have for blowing a person to bits? He claimed that Benjy had a run in with a Muggle device that is called a land mine. He also had no clue as to the whereabouts of Caradoc Dearborn. He doubted that Death Eaters killed him and that he hadn't decided he was better off dead."

Scrimgour sighed, "So Pettigrew recipient of the Order of Merlin, Third class was really a Death Eater who betrayed the Potters. Auror Sirius Black was innocent. Fabian Prewett though killed by Dolohov Dumbledore ordered him to be killed by Auror Moody. Gideon Prewett is still alive but was imprisoned in his own home for years. Auror Arthur Weasley was separated from his mate, subjected to memory charms, Amortentia and his children were stolen from Gideon Prewett. A Muggle bomb killed Benjy Fenwick. The McKinnons and most of the Bones were killed possibly on Dumbledore's orders despite testimony that Death Eater Travers was there."

"I'm a bit concerned Head Auror. What if the Mass Muggle Killings weren't actually done by Death Eaters? What if Dumbledore was behind them somehow?"

Scrimgour paled, "That would make him the greatest mass murderer Britain has ever known."

"I have testimony that he aborted two infants without consent of the bearers or the sires. One was accompanied by a mindrape locking away all memories concerning the baby's sire and he was instructed while under the Imperious that he was to pursue a relationship with a pureblood heiress. The other abortion was accomplished by casting a spell that is illegal and only casted by skilled healers and with Ministry permission."

"Why would an abortion spell be illegal?"

Dora stared at Scrimgour, "When it rendered the victim infertile. The victim was young and scared a Fourth or Fifth Year at the time. The baby's sire was trying to convince his father to allow them to Bond and had no idea he was expecting or that his mate was ill. He kept that secret for nearly twenty years, a source of shame. He'd been forced to agree, he was a half-blood with an abusive Muggle father. He was threatened with expulsion when he couldn't name the sire. Badgered and humiliated the child was taken."

Scrimgour read the terrible truth in her face, "Tell me the sire wasn't a Lord."

Dora shook her head, "Both Bearer and Sire were heirs to titles, the Bearer through a grandfather he never met and the sire through his father. They will eventually be filing a case against Dumbledore using the archaic laws. A Muggle-raised half-blood was not aware that had the sire been informed of the pregnancy that they would immediately been allowed to bond despite any other prospective betrothals. A pureblood is never born a bastard if it can be helped. If it can't the child is quickly blood adopted."

"Who were the young couple in question?' Scrimgour asked.

"Lord Malfoy was it's sire and Lord Prince-Malfoy it's bearer who has been cursed barren."

"The Second couple?"

Dora sighed, "Until the Heads of their families file a complaint I cannot divulge the information."

"We should go question our prisoner." Scrimgour couldn't handle hearing another damning thing about Dumbledore despite his distrust for him…

 

XoooooX

Lucius and Severus explored the Crouch home, searching out their former Master when they heard a voice quite childlike that seemed out of place.

"No! Don't! Please Professor. I promise I be stealing nothing. I promised to be good. No stealing. No scaring. No magic out of school. Don't hurt me! I do nothing bad! NO!"

Then came sobbing and shrieks of pain…

They opened the door that would probably have led to Crouch's personal apartments.

Shivering and screaming in the bed was a tiny creature, its form indistinct.

Severus used a spell of his own creation that identified the voice as belonging to their master. He looked at Lucius in the dark, shock exploding across his features.

Before they speak the speaker woke, shaking, whispering, "Who is there?"

There was a slight hissing.

Severus understood but cast his created spell, "Compredis Serpentus."

There came a childlike voice, "Have you come to hurt me?"

Lucius was struck silent.

Sighing in his own head, Severus spoke gently, "We came seeking our Master. We stumbled upon a faithful servant at Hogwarts as he was revealed to be in your service."

"Oh…the servant imprisoned here. The scary one sent him. He's angry."

Lucius mouthed in shock, 'the scary one?'

Severus chose to ignore him, "We've come to see if we can serve our master is a small way. Perhaps, we can serve better then a mad servant who broke the ways of the Dark Lord and someone who dared betray his friends."

"I don't want servants."

Lucius spoke slowly, "Our Lord once called us family."

"My only family…for I can never have a family." The voice said breaking into sobs.

Severus moved closer, his wand returning to his holster, "I mean no harm. Tell me who hurt you."

"I was told never to tell but what can he do to me now? I am ruined…ugly…I lost everything…" the voice cried.

"Tell me, I'll find a way to protect you."

"No one can protect me! He…everyone thinks he's some great Messiah! He Defeated a Dark Lord."

Lucius gasped, "Dumbledore?"

The voice shook, "Don't say his name!"

Severus said quietly, "He murdered my child. My Muggle father hated me, beating and starving me. He once locked me in a closet for days."

"Then you know what it's like…to have no one to love you."

Severus nodded, "I did. My mother couldn't stand to look at me. She was once a great witch who fell. She later couldn't live with herself and killed him then took her own life."

"You lost one child. His rape took all my chance at children."

Severus whispered, "Slytherin's cauldron. You were a Chuvash Submissive?"

"I was twelve. I didn't know. I came into my inheritance at sixteen; I discovered what I was in the Library. The book said we were rare; I was slim and beautiful then. I had the described pure white scales but I was tainted. No Dominant would want a submissive that was infertile. My hatred boiled up, I tried to confront him and claim he ended an Ancient Line. He…"

The sobs stopped abruptly.

"Don't listen to Snivelling Tommy!"

The voice was louder, deeper and devoid of tears.

"Who are you?" Lucius demanded.

"Slughorn calls me Tom, I'm a prefect. I'm sixteen. So what if that thrice-accursed Professor raped me? Children were a foolish dream! Who would want some useless freak that grew up in a Muggle Orphanage during the London Blitz? I'm a thief and murderer. My hands will never be clean. He didn't rape me once he raped me many times. He liked Glamouring me so I was blonde. Never knew why. He put the Imperious on me, told me that I wanted to become a Dark Lord. That my greatest desire was to destroy him but I never could. That the only way I could be sure that I would be able to do that was to make Horcruxes he told me I was a descendant of Slytherin, I wasn't supposed to tell anyone but I did. God it was great being King, my every wish catered to. No one blinked an eye when I refused to take a consort; I ignored the Slytherin Queens and spent much time in the Bathes tended to by Neriads. I discovered quite by accident the lost Portrait of Salazar Slytherin; he knew I was his heir. He ordered me to use it to purify the school. I was told the location of the Entrance to the Chamber of Secrets. I discovered the Basilisk; it bonded to me, ignoring my tainted body. We attacked Muggleborns who sought to change us,"

The voice changed again going high-pitched, "Didn't want to kill Myrtle! She was bullied. Dumbledore didn't like her either."

"SHUT UP TOMMY! I killed Myrtle. I didn't like it much but it gave me a chance to test my ability make Horcruxes. The exact incantation wasn't written in any book regarding them but mine worked."

Lucius felt eyes on him and shivered slightly.

"I know you. You're a Malfoy. Always a bit sketchy. Hard to trust. I felt a part of me return."

Lucius swallowed, "My Bondmate Narcissa was a bit mad, she forced me to give the diary to a Muggle-loving wizard's young daughter. It possessed her and nearly killed her trying to assume corporeal form. Its encasement was destroyed with a fang from your Basilisk."

"Our mind is fractured, more then before. There are three now; Snivelling Tommy, Tom which is me and Voldemort. He's the one without a conscience. I do bad things because I have no choice."

"How many lives have you taken?" Severus asked unsure he wanted to hear the answer.

"Too many." Tommy was back. "We killed ten…no…twelve…first was Myrtle, then our Muggle relations, a Muggle tramp, Hepzibah Smith- she liked us, an Albanian peasant and the Potters. The Scary one wanted to kill the baby. I couldn't do it. His parents were good people, doing what our parents never did. They tried to protect him. The scary one cast the curse but couldn't hurt baby. Baby not hurt anyone; I put us in front of curse. It hurt us, ripped us apart more. We were weak, so weak. We just ran as far as we could." He cried, "Why couldn't I have nice mum like little baby? Shouldn't have hurt her. Man was mean, wanted to hurt us but no killer. We came to hurt them, scary one want him dead, he die. Forgot, that woman Bertha. Angry one hurt her to get information. Tom felt sorry for her and killed her. Tom make Nagini Horcrux. Then Tom was talking to Wormtail, Nagini come in. say old Muggle spying. Angry one kill him."

Severus was shocked, only twelve? Mostly only enough to make his Horcruxes? Well almost he knew Horcruxes were a Dark Object of extraordinary power. "Tell me, how many did you make?"

Tommy was quiet, "Diary, ring, locket, cup, crown thing and snake. When try to hurt baby felt same pain. Did I make baby one? Didn't want to hurt him."

Lucius was shocked; his image of his former master was very different.

"Seven? You made seven? Diary is destroyed. Your bit of soul came home after?" Severus was not surprised, multiple rapes, forced division of soul and murder could destroy a mind.

"Yes it hurt but we're stronger. Scary one want to be stronger. Think kidnapping the baby good idea. Baby's blood make stronger. Made plan, kidnap baby. Not want to hurt baby. Please don't let us hurt baby!"

Severus asked, "If Horcruxes destroyed, it make you strong?"

"Not strong enough to hurt people but why?"

Severus smiled, "You may have hurt Wizards and a handful of Muggles but as a Chuvash the Ministry can't have you tried before the Wizengamot or sentenced to Azkaban."

"Why?"

The voice was now Tom's.

Severus said quickly, "You're Chuvash. Only the King of the Chuvash can sentence you." He remembered Blaise's words from yesterday and knew his Parseltongue wasn't up to the task, he sighed, "I know how to summon him but I'm not Chuvash. Only a Chuvash can summon him."

"Is he scary?" Tommy.

"He can be but he hates Dumbledore as do we. Perhaps, he can help us heal you before he considers what your sentence should be." Severus said gently.

"I can speak for you." Tom.

The two distinct personas inhabiting the shell of their former master worried Lucius but he didn't dare speak.

Severus said in English, "A child of thou in danger. I summon thee, Sirius Black, true Lord of the Ancient House of Black and King of the Chuvash! If you repeat those words in Parseltongue he'll come."

The words were repeated in Parseltongue.

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 week and humble servant." Severus spoke bowing. "I have found a lost child whose sins are great. They torment him. He suffered greatly at Dumbledore's hands, through his veins is the same blood that runs through Adrian's."

Sirius I knew what had happened to this submissive and understood how it could shatter his mind.

There came a great roar of anger, "NO! I WON'T BE JUDGED! I HAVEN'T HAD MY REVENGE!"

Lucius quivered slightly.

"BE SILENT! I have not come to judge my child. I have come to bring him home."

The power flung at the body buried in bedding broke into sobs, "Not come to kill us? Make Scary go away! Want to help us? We do bad things. We hurt people. Don't want to hurt anyone anymore. Tommy want to be good boy."

"Tommy?" Sirius I asked.

"It's short for Tom Marvolo Riddle, there three of us. Tommy, Tom and Voldemort. I don't like being bad. Tom does it because of the Imperious. He thinks wanting family and babies is stupid.

"What about Voldemort?" Sirius I asked, a bit angry that this Dark Lord was one of his own…

"He bad only because he want to destroy that bad man who hurt us. We don't like Muggles and we did kill some but only five. Three mean people and two just not in good place, killing people bad."

"Yes, Killing people very bad. Why kill them all?"

"Myrtle was a bit annoying, always crying. She was a Muggleborn, no one like her. The Riddles, they bad people, insult family. Insult mother. Sire abandon mother though pregnant. Never know mother, she died when I was born. I would never leave my child!"

"I can't condone the Murder of a student but I might be able to forgive the revenge for mother. You reclaimed your mother's honour; they shamed and abandoned your mother refusing to give you name nor acknowledgement." Sirius I was splitting hairs here.

"Hepzibah Smith had Mother's locket. She laughed, called my mother a thief and a fool who sold it for a pittance. It was Slytherin's; there was no right for her to have it. By Birthright it was mine."

That was Tom…

"You retrieved Chuvash Property from a human. Chuvash theft punishment can be death." Sirius I said plausibly.

"I made Horcruxes." Tom said his voice a mix of pride and shame.

"How many?"

"Five maybe six. Destroy one and get stronger. Please, I want to be whole again. Don't want to use scary one's way. He hurt baby."

Sirius I's eyes narrowed, "Hurt what baby?"

Severus said quietly, "He means Harry. His stepping in front of the curse caused the scar, he couldn't kill Harry. It couldn't kill him but left him grievously injured. He thinks Harry might have a shard of his soul."

Harry his descendant a Horcrux? The very idea revolted the Chuvash King but what could he do? He sighed, "Where would we find these soul shards?"

"Angry One …or was it I? So jumbled. Give diary to Narcissa Malfoy. Give Cup to Bellatrix. Bellatrix say put in Vault. Ring hid in Gaunt shack, Little Hangleton. Necklace, Cave; Angry One borrow Black House Elf. Take elf to cave, hide there. Crown thing, hid in Hogwarts in Room of Hidden things. Snake is Nagini. Then maybe Harry is all." Tom rattled off.

"We'll assemble pieces. I'll ask the Veela Queen if she'll help. Perhaps, she can heal his soul. If he hadn't been abandoned by his parents or attacked by Dumbledore then he might not have become this." Reluctantly Sirius I, levitated the body, swaddling the ugly thing in blankets. "I'll hide him. You know not where. May tell I have him. He is Chuvash and my right to punish. He will be punished when his soul is whole or at least more whole."

"Wait, I was bound. I am Veela creature of Light. Your Mark weakens me. Is there a way to remove mark?"

"Want to leave family?" came the tearful voice.

"Still family." Severus said gently, "Still believe Muggle Ideas dangerous, but he is my mate. I have injuries from my father he wishes to heal as long as he bears the Dark Mark he can't heal me."

"Fine." Tom said bored, "Sing. Must sing a Parseltongue song, only song of love sang by one who loves can break mark. Anyone who loves and knows love can free or be free. Only one free from Mark can sing."

Clutching bundled deformed Dark Lord Sirius, the Chuvash King disappeared in the same manner as before when he was summoned.

Severus kissed Lucius hard, "You think he means it?"

Lucius grinned, "I do. Let's deliver our captives to the Ministry or at least Dora."

 

 

Chapter Text

Chapter 24

Dora and Scrimgour entered a stone block cell, lit weakly with sputtering torches.

Manacled and wild-eyed Barty Crouch Jr. sat in a chair.

"Well, it seems your protests were untrue for it was you who helped torture the Longbottoms." Scrimgour glowered menacingly.

Dora stayed behind the Head Auror.

"Do we need the Veritaserum or will you confess?"

"The Dark Lord LIVES! His Wrath is great! All shall tremble before him! He shall rise greater and more terrible then before. His servants will be ordered to attack as never before! He shall eliminate the boy after utilizing him. It was my Master's will that Harry Potter be entered into the tournament. I was to quietly, unobtrusively guide him through the tasks so that he remained first. Then Malfoy that cowardly traitor exposed a flaw in my Master's plans and Potter was disqualified as a Champion. I haven't been able to slip away to tell my Master that Potter is no longer in the Tournament. I hoped that our Daily Prophet didn't inform him." Barty laughed almost manically.

Scrimgour was furious, he slapped the prisoner, "Tell me how you were involved with the attack on Auror Longbottom and his wife?"

Still laughing Barty replied, "Found memo in dad's office. Said the Aurors had arrested someone who had information regarding my Master's whereabouts. That the person's identity had been classified. We, Lady Lestrange, Lord Lestrange and Mr. Lestrange followed Longbottom and captured him while he was meeting his wife. Pity the boy wasn't around or we'd have used him to force the Auror to talk like we did his wife. We,"

Scrimgour stiffened, his voice low but vibrating with barely restrained anger, "That's my godson you're talking about."

"Oh?" Barty sneered, "he's quite the coward. Couldn't take a little screaming. Mark my words, Longbottom Heir he might be but he'll never sire a child."

Scrimgour glared, "I've heard enough. You're to be sent back to Azkaban. You are a menace. How could you think about using the Cruciatus on a baby?"

Barty shrugged, "Same way my Master planned to use it on Potter. You do what must be done."

"I don't know where you went wrong. You should have grown up to be a decent person." Dora said to herself.

"I grew up torturing and killing animals. Joined the Death Eaters at eighteen. I was Lady Lestrange's favourite. I'd agree to anything."

Dora did not want to know what he meant by that.

Scrimgour was disgusted; he turned and stalked out, yelling at a passing Auror, "Whiteside! Get that worm out of my dungeon! I want him returned to Azkaban. I don't care if he'd been declared dead. His sentence stands."

"Sure, send me back! My Master will rise. He'll come free those who are loyal to him. I'll be rewarded! Just like the Lestranges!"

"And silence him! I don't want to hear his voice." He gestured for Dora to follow him. After she'd shut his office door, he glared at her, "Any chance he's not just crazy? Fudge would just want him Kissed. He'd want to pretend all is well."

"I've heard too much in the last few weeks to believe he is quite as gone as we'd like to believe. I don't believe he's very powerful at the moment. As far as I could guess he's only got one or two servants. Most of his Death Eaters are content to be good wizards as far as the Ministry can tell. I'll stake my career that Lucius and Severus aren't Death Eaters. They do worry that Dumbledore is a possible danger. They wanted me to investigate because as an Auror I have special training in investigation. I've told you what I've learned."

There came a loud voice from the Head Auror's secretary's desk or thereabouts.

"I demand to speak to the Head Auror. I wish to complain about the ludicrous charges against me. It's all lies. Its that stupid old man stirring up trouble."

Dora glanced at her boss, "That's Molly Prewett."

Scrimgour chuckled, "Send someone to relieve Kingsley. I'm sure he'd like to be present when we interview her. Go escort her to an interview room."

Dora slipped out, finding an Auror she deemed trustworthy she sent him to inform Kingsley Shacklebolt that he was needed at the Ministry and told him that he was to remain with Moody. Informing him that only Healers Smythe and Tonks were to attend him. Then advanced to Molly, "Ms. Prewett? The Head Auror is quite busy at the moment,"

Molly's face was red with anger, "My name is Molly Weasley."

Dora shook her head, "It is not. Your bonding to Mr. Arthur Weasley is invalid. I'll address you as is proper. Now Ms. Prewett, the Head Auror and Auror Shacklebolt are being informed of your arrival. If you follow me I'll escort you to an interview room."

"I'm a lady. I'll not be treated like some common criminal." Molly glared.

If this woman were a lady then Dora'd eat one of Dobby's socks. "If you'll follow me," Dora said stiffly, her Auror robes trailing behind her.

Molly stalked off after her.

Dora realized this would be a VERY, very long day…

 

 

XoooooX

Draco had received favourable reports from his messengers Vince, Greg and Neville. His date plan was proceeding as planned. He asked Neville to represent him and asked if he would march in his place to breakfast with the others. Some of the House had left earlier but most were late risers and had chosen to wait for their court.

Harry had been dressed in warm but flattering clothing inherited from Draco, a cloak lined with fur, its interior cast with permanent warming charms while the exterior was a kind of leather and was thick with impervious charms.

Blaise was wearing a dragon hide jacket with a fur lining over warm but fashionable clothing for his 'first date'.

Greg and Vince were properly dressed as well.

Theo was practically glowing and seemed to be in good humour, which was out of sorts with his usual behaviour.

Draco waited for the rest of the House to leave promising a nervous Greg and Vince they'd be along shortly. He laughed, "I doubt they'll eat everything. Besides, we're going to Honeydukes. You can pick up any number of snacks there."

Greg shifted nervously, he was more interested in planning out his future then stuffing his face like the immature boy he had been.

Vince was of a more indolent nature and did not perceive he was being reprimanded.

Draco led them first out of their dormitory and then out of the Slytherin Dungeon's proper. Making his way to his papa's private apartments, he knocked once and then let himself in.

Remus was lying in front of the fire surround by books, Severus' potions journals to be precise. He still hadn't manages to finish even one school year's worth of his mate's journals. He glanced up at the boys. "About time you made an appearance. I half thought your fathers would prove wrong and you wouldn't be going on some sort of date today."

Draco looked surprised, "So they did leave? I expected as much. I doubt they'll be back anytime soon. I take it you are supposed to chaperone us?"

Remus nodded standing and stretching before going to retrieve a worn jacket, "I might as well get used to supervising a group of hormonal teenagers. I just know Severus is going to put my name down for Hogsmeade's weekends."

"For all his protests he really doesn't mind them." Draco laughed.

Harry realized that Remus' jacket was a bit thin and threadbare. He decided then that his guardian needed a warm coat for Christmas.

Remus gestured at the door, "Have you eaten breakfast yet?"

Draco shook his head; "We're heading up to breakfast now. Thought we'd talk a bit and then meet with the rest of our companions."

Remus shrugged, "Might as well join you. I could do with a snack. I ate early, sometime after your fathers left." He tried not to appear worried, he was. Talented wizard and double agent Severus might be but 'Dark Lord Hunting' was not his idea of a good plan.

They made their way to the Slytherin table, Remus keeping an eye on their flank as well as warily watching out for his back. He'd learned that even the supposedly safest places have hidden dangers.

Breakfast was a light-hearted affair of sorts with much excitement because it was a Hogsmeade weekend.

The Durmstrang students were still a bit lost without their leader but seemed to be still sure of their welcome. They had reacted with shock to be invited to eat with Slytherin by the King of the Snakes rather then their prince but most were silent not really understanding the complexities of Slytherin politics.

Then again who did understand such things? Even some snakes failed such as Parkinson, whose eyes glittered with hatred at Draco and malice towards Harry.

 

 

XoooooX

There were cries of shock and surprise when Severus and Lucius flooed into the Ministry.

To eliminate temptation Lucius had taken Pettigrew himself and left Crouch for his mate. He glared icily at the twittering crowds, "We have business with the Head Auror."

His tone brokered no objections at a path to the elevators emerged.

The two Lords and former Death Eaters had returned from their Dark Lord hunting expedition perhaps more victorious then any Auror. They were politicians, scholars and Philosophers not as a rule Battle Wizards.

Their reception at their destination was of shock.

Kingsley stared having just arrived moments ahead and was about to join the Head Auror and Tonks with Molly Prewett. He was nearly speechless, it was only thing to see Peter Pettigrew alive and well in Potter's memories and quite another to see him in person. "Lord Malfoy? Professor?"

Lucius smirked, "It is not usually a habit of mine to attempt to do the job of an Auror. I prefer duels of words and opinions rather then wands truth be told. I woke with a vague idea of where certain persons might be hiding. I found to my amusement the person truly responsible for the Potters' death." He dropped the bound body of Wormtail on the stone floor; "I have cast a spell that will prevent him from transforming. I cannot be sure how long it will last but I expect you'll take precautions."

Severus relinquished his burden, "This one should be questioned. He facilitated the escape of a Prisoner from Azkaban and kept them imprisoned for years. I'm sure if questioned both Crouches would admit that the younger cast the Dark Mark during the riot. I suspect he most likely used the Imperious on his son to control him.

"You bring me two prisoners? Where did you find them?" Kingsley shocked and a bit embarrassed that such persons had outdone Aurors.

"At Crouch's home. We thought an early morning assault would catch them off guard. We considered the possibility that they might move after finding out Barty Jr. was arrested." Severus said with a shrug.

Lucius laughed, "We told our mate we were going "Dark Lord Hunting.'"

"It would seem you were unsuccessful."

Severus sneered, "Actually, we were quite successful. We had him in our grasp. Then we discovered he was a member of a race of Magical Creatures that has agreement with all Ministries to police their own. We informed their leader and he will be facing justice."

"That's convenient. He's got monster blood." Some Auror whispered to a companion.

"Probably get off easy."

"That's true."

Lucius' voice was cold, "I know this individual. He had disowned all members of his family who fought on the Dark Lord's side. He will be judging the Dark Lord on crimes he committed and those he ordered large and small. He has little reason to allow a person with such blood on his hands to walk free. I would not say at present the Dark Lord lacks a conscience. He knows the faces of everyone whose life he took. Only once did he hesitate. After cursing Potter he found he could not kill him. He took the curse for him and that is why he vanished. It was he not Harry who survived a killing curse. I am his follower no longer. I still believe in the old ways, I see no reason to allow our heritage to be sullied or to allow Muggleborns to treat our magical brethren ill because they aren't human and are therefore lesser beings."

"I'll have these to miscreants imprisoned in cells. We'll interview them later. I'm on my way to meet Tonks and Scrimgour. Molly Prewett showed up to have it out with me." Shacklebolt said glaring at the Aurors who'd spoken out of turn.

"We'll leave you to finish." Lucius said politely, his mask in place. The Dark Lord may have done monstrous things but to call him a monster because of a Creature inheritance was childish and pathetic. It was also indirectly calling him a monster, which he disagreed with. Although placing the Diary, a Horcrux in the possession of a child making her a vessel of Dark Deeds could be considered monstrous.

Severus glared at Pettigrew, "Knowing what you did, that you betrayed the sweetest, more forgiving woman I want to hate you. A part of me wished I could kill you. From the moment I heard it was you I wanted to kill you. It took great pains not to. Like Harry said, James wouldn't have wanted Remus and Black to become killers because of you. Likewise Lily would not have approved of me doing it either. I'd prefer not to have my hands stained with your blood."

Crouch still glared at them as if he wanted to see them fall over dead.

Pettigrew twitched, as if he knew that Severus Snape meant it when he said he wanted him dead. He looked furious that he had to be grateful to Malfoy for not giving the slimy dungeon bat a chance to kill him. It was odd to be 'saved' by the very people he was trying to hide from.

Lucius wanted nothing more then to wash the filth of Crouch and Pettigrew away. He turned knowing Severus would follow. "Tell the Head Auror we had no intent to imply that he couldn't dispatch Aurors to apprehend these two. We merely wished to prevent them from having a chance to escape. It was merely a 'citizens' arrest'. We did no harm to them nor did we question them. We felt those were better left to experts."

Before Shacklebolt could thank them properly, the two former Death Eaters were gone. He stared after them, had they really gone searching for He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named to turn him over to the authorities? Though he hadn't read the transcripts of Barty Crouch Jr. interrogation yet no doubt his father had some hand in his escape so he would insist the man remain in custody. Until all the facts were in he would insist the man's 'arrest' remain within the Department. Trusting the prisoners would be taken to their cells made his way to the interrogation where Molly Prewett was being detained for questioning. Upon reaching the room in question he knocked twice and let himself in.

Inside Ms. Prewett and Auror Nymphadora Tonks were sitting on opposite sides of a table. Dora was tapping a file with her forefinger, a scroll of parchment, quill and inkpot beside her left hand. Ms. Prewett appeared defiant and angry.

Head Auror Scrimgour who was neither slinking in the shadows nor was he lounging against the wall but was present in the unique manner that made different from other Aurors.

Shacklebolt sighed, "Sorry to keep you waiting. I was detained on Auror business."

Ms. Prewett sniffed, "It's bad form to keep a lady waiting."

A lady was someone like Amelia Bones, Augusta Longbottom or Andromeda Tonks nee Black. Molly Prewett was no lady but out of courtesy, Shacklebolt said nothing, "I am here now so we may begin."

"A Report was filed against you by Lord Weasley on behalf of his son and grandsons. It called for the immediate annulment of your Bonding due to its invalid nature. You are also accused of filing false records of birth for children claimed to be born for the House of Weasley. You are accused of being an accomplice in kidnapping of six individuals. You are accused of use of illegal memory charms and use of Amortentia illegally."

"Lies, all of it." Molly glared, arms crossed, "That senile old man hates me. He turned his back on his own son and left his own grandchildren to starve."

"You would be willing to take Veritaserum to enter evidence in your own defense?" Shacklebolt asked politely.

Molly swallowed nervously and nodded.

Scrimgour smelled lies and treachery. "Examine her for the antidote to Veritaserum. I suspect she's taken it."

"Head Auror!" Molly protested, seemingly outraged.

Scrimgour gave her an insincere smile,"If you have done nothing wrong then it would merely be a slight inconvenience to prove your testimony and evidence would truthful."

"It's not even admissible in court!" Molly stammered.

"It's not as if you got anything to hide. Is it?" Dora asked sweetly, bile rising in her throat.

Molly swallowed, "Of…of course not."

"Then surely you wouldn't mind us verifying that you haven't taken anything that would make Veritaserum ineffective." Shacklebolt said politely, though he was disliking her more annoyed with her.

Molly bit her lip, uncertainty in her eyes.

"We have a fresh supply sent in from our potioneer." Dora smirked, knowing of course that Severus had sent a batch of very strong Veritaserum recently.

"Who would that be?" Molly asked through pursed lips.

"That Ms. Prewett is privileged information." Scrimgour said evenly.

"If it's Professor Snape I wouldn't trust him." Molly said sharply. "He is a Death Eater."

Kingsley glanced at his boss, "I object to such generalizations. Lord Malfoy and Lord Prince-Malfoy have down us a great service. They tracked down He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named. He will face judgment. They also delivered the person responsible for the murders of the Potters and someone responsible for an escape from Azkaban."

Scrimgour was momentarily speechless, "They did what? He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named is here?"

Molly looked frightened. "They betrayed their master?"

Shacklebolt shook his head, "He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named had magical creature status. As per our agreement with his race he was turned over to the Head of their people for Judgment. They assure me that this August Person will not judge him lightly."

"So they let him escape." Molly sneered.

"No, they were quite adamant that he was in the custody of someone capable of judging him for crimes he actively committed as well as those he ordered. He maybe held responsible for crimes done in his name such as the Torture of the Longbottom couple." Shacklebolt added knowing that Scrimgour had been close to Auror Longbottom having trained him.

Scrimgour was both embarrassed that two Death Eaters accomplished something his own Aurors couldn't. "So Pettigrew is alive as Potter's pensive evidence suggested?"

"Alive and sitting in one of our cells as we speak. As is Crouch."

"Of course Crouch is in our cells. Auror Tonks brought him in last night." Scrimgour said tightly.

"My apologies for not being clear," Shacklebolt said apologetically, "I was referring to the elder Crouch, who was discovered imprisoned in his own home I assume by Pettigrew and He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named."

"Well it saves us the trouble of tracking him down." Dora muttered, a bit annoyed that they hadn't taxed her to retrieve him.

"Well just because they said they captured He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named doesn't mean they did. They're Death Eaters!" Molly protested as if they'd lost their minds.

"They are apparently fine citizens, we would be proud to have more like them." Scrimgour said pleasantly.

"They'd make anyone embarrassed. Death eaters and homosexuals. I'm surprised anyone is willing to tolerate their disgusting behaviours. " Molly muttered.

"I supposed you had similar opinions regarding your own brother and Arthur." Dora said pleasantly.

"That person was an embarrassment. Arthur was supposed to be mine! He had no right to pervert him like that. Inciting him to unnatural behaviours."

"I suppose he deserved to be kidnapped." Dora said quietly.

"If it would get him away from Arthur long enough to learn how to be a real man. I don't know what sort of Dark Magic that person used on my Arthur. He is unable to sexually aroused or attracted to anyone else. The Curse also drained his magic."

Dora burst out laughing, "Dark Curse? Are you completely unintelligent or something? You just described a Soul Bond."

"Soul Bonds are lies. I have that on the best authority."

Dora snorted, "You mean Dumbledore?"

"You should treat him with more respect."

"I have no reason to." Dora flicked her wand and a sliver stream flowed from her mind into a vial. She handed it back to Shacklebolt, "I'm tired of nonsense."

Shacklebolt poured it into a pensieve with a screen and the memory began.

Molly turned whiter and whiter as it continued to play, "It's lies. All fabrication. That isn't me!"

"You admitted to numerous crimes, including passing off two children as Weasleys. Would you like to change your statement?" Scrimgour said pleasantly.

Molly looked faint and ill, "I…I refuse to speak. You've…obviously made up your minds already. I am not a criminal."

"Would you like to divulge who the father of your children are?"

Molly laughed, "Its someone you would least expect. I see no reason to divulge that information."

"You do realize you will be imprisoned for some period of time because of the charges. If not in Azkaban then in the prison beneath Gringotts." Shacklebolt said glaring at her, "The Weasley family as well as the Prewett refuse to take responsibility for your children."

"I took in that person's children and raised them like my own and they can't do the same for my poor innocent children."

Dora sorted, "Innocent? Your son in the course of a week assaulted two fellow Gryffindors."

"That lying cheater Harry Potter and that pathetic Muggle Granger. To think I was going to let that wench become betrothed to my Ronald. How dare she claim he hit her?" Molly snapped.

Dora rolled her eyes, "He physically assaulted Potter and Granger as well as attempting to hex Fred Weasley who wasn't even facing him."

"LIES!"

"The events were witnessed hundreds of students. George took the hex for Fred and never raised his wand. He is getting progressively more violent." Dora said shaking her head.

Molly muttered, "Should have considered that considering his blood relations. Too bad I had little choice. I wanted a child and Arthur wouldn't give me one. The father as you call him has no idea he has children."

"Are you admitting to rape?"

Molly snorted, "Of course not. He doesn't know whom he slept with. I don't even know if he remembers the incidents happened."

"Sounds like rape to me." Shacklebolt said thoughtfully.

"He's the freak. Seriously, only insisting on having sex with someone wearing a glamour of some dead girl!"

Dora blinked, she felt cold. "Ariana?"

"Yeah," Molly shivered, "that's what he kept calling me the whole time."

Dora snorted, "I would never have guessed. No wonder Ronald is violent. He's a Dumbledore."

Scrimgour looked vaguely ill, "They're the Headmaster's children?"

"No," Molly looked shocked, "I wouldn't sleep with him. Besides, he's incapable of fathering children."

"They're the children of a person imprisoned in Azkaban for inappropriate charms on goats and a grandfather who murdered three children." Dora a bit shocked, "Aberforth was in love with his sister. He sleeps with whores Glamoured to look like his dead crazy teenage sister?"

“I am no whore! I am the daughter of Lord Prewett!” Molly glared.

 "No wonder Ronald hadn't been expelled for his brutish behaviour." Shacklebolt murmured, "I suppose he'd best be told while Molly's case is being fought over for who has more jurisdiction due to worse crimes."

"Too bad the Head of the Dumbledore Family is the Headmaster. I supposed I can pass the information to Lord Prewett and Lord Weasley. I am sure they'll be informing him that they are his responsibility." Dora said with a shrug, "Since Molly, Ronald and Ginevra Prewett have been disowned by the Prewett family."

"This is all that nosy old man's fault!" Molly muttered.

"Actually, its thanks to a nosy rat." Dora smirked, "They overheard your conversation with Dumbledore regarding Gideon and your supposed children. As if that rat hadn't already overheard that Gideon Prewett was possibly dying."

"You did it! You bitch! You've ruined my life!" Molly screamed and her wand leapt into her hand.

"Expelliarmus." Scrimgour said flatly. "Attacking an Auror is illegal."

Shacklebolt cast a series of spells to keep Molly restrained but not gagged.

"What did I ever do to you Tonks? Why couldn't you leave it alone?" Molly cursed at her.

"He was possibly dying, my honour as an Auror wouldn't allow me to turn a blind eye to injustice." Dora shrugged.

Rather productive weekend, Scrimgour mused; a Dark Lord captured, an escaped prisoner, the true betrayer of the Potters and one self-destructive Dark Arts hating former rising star all in custody.

Molly was escorted out by Shacklebolt.

Scrimgour glanced up, "My apologies for not believing you could pass the training. You are truly one of my best. I know that Shacklebolt's investigation into the Potters as well as Molly Prewett would not have gone as well. I suspect we'll be announcing that Black was unfairly treated. It wouldn't have gone so well without you." He chuckled, "Not bad…for a Hufflepuff."

Dora smirked, "I had a good mentor. I am sure that Auror Longbottom would have said the same about you."

Scrimgour nodded, "He did at that. He made me godfather to his firstborn son."

Dora nodded, "If Moody had been as honourable as you no doubt I might have offered him the same honour." She said stacking up the file, "I am sure you can have Shacklebolt write an adequate report. I'll go relieve the Auror watching Moody."

"Keep me posted on your investigation of Dumbledore." Scrimgour nodded taking the file.

 

 

Chapter Text

Chapter 24

 

Charlie and Remus nodded at one another as their charges started congregating in the Entrance Hall.

 

When they were all present Draco grinned, “Shall we go?”

 

Luna chuckled, “Sorry I’m late Theo.”

 

Theo blinked, if she was gorgeous before... with that strawberry blonde hair and silver eyes she looked like George had a kid with Draco…

 

“Good morning Draco.” Luna smiled.

 

They all made their way out in the snow towards Hogsmeade.

 

They stopped a few of the various shops before an overly excited Harry dragged Draco into Honeydukes.

 

Draco, Vince, Theo, Fred and Greg bought candy for both them and their date. Vince mostly bought candy for himself.

 

Blaise’s nose twitched, he smelled rich chocolate and it was steaming. He squeezed his way through the crowd of patrons. His jaw dropped, “Sweet Merlin. I’ve died and passed through the Veil.”

 

There was a steaming chocolate fountain, with a tray of delights ranging from a Muggle item called marshmallow to various fruits as well as other things that taste good dipped in chocolate.

 

Charlie had followed the teen to keep an eye on him; now he saw the glowing, sensual look on Blaise’s face.

 

Blaise looked up at Charlie who towered over everyone, “Please? Please? Can I?” he wanted the dominant Chuvash to pay for it.

 

Charlie laughed, “Alright.”

 

“Alright what?” Fred asked curious.

 

“Blaise found a chocolate fountain.”

 

Harry’s eyes widened, “Chocolate fountain? You mean like in Charlie and the Chocolate Factory? This I’ve got to see.” He ran ahead skidding to a stop next to Blaise. “I’ve died and gone to heaven. It’s chocolate fountain fondue…”

 

“What’s a fondue?” Blaise asked curious.

 

“You melt chocolate or cheese till it’s liquid. Then you dip stuff in it. You dip bread and vegetables in a cheese fondue. You can dip fruits, other candy etc into chocolate.” He was literally drooling.

 

Draco could hear Harry’s awe and went to ask a Honeydukes employee how much a fountain would cost. Satisfied it wasn’t an outrageous price he told them to charge one to his Gringotts vault. He then made his way through the crowd, they parted for him naturally, so Draco walked up to the person taking payment, “Two sickles a piece?”

 

The employee nodded.

 

Draco placed two Galleons in their box, “Harry love, fourteen for you.”

 

The employee started to protest.

 

Draco smirked, “Consider it a tip. Besides, he doesn’t need more then that.”

 

Harry hugged Draco, “You’re the best.” He was too shy to kiss him in the middle of Honeydukes so he skipped off blushing.

 

Charlie handed the employee two Galleons as well, “Go on.” Nudging Blaise to follow in Harry’s wake.

 

Blaise started off and then turned back to grab Charlie’s hand dragging him along.

 

Smirking Fred decided to pay for Angelina to try it and fed her two strawberries dipping in warm chocolate.

 

The pleased moan she gave as she ate the chocolate covered strawberries was so sexy.

 

Blaise held out a piece of pineapple he’d dipped in chocolate holding it up to Charlie, but he was still a bit too short.

 

Charlie chuckled, bending down and taking the chocolate covered fruit gently from the dark skinned teen’s fingers. Unintentionally, sensually licking the slightly dripping chocolate. He reached for one of those unfamiliar sweet smelling round powdery things dipping it in the chocolate.

 

Shyly Blaise took the offered sweet from Charlie’s fingers, he didn’t know what the white thing was but it was gooey, the sweetness melting together. He dipped another piece of fruit in the flowing, steaming chocolate before offering it to the dominant Chuvash.

 

Draco had moved closer to Harry.

 

Harry turned to offer a cherry that was dripping with chocolate out to his blonde mate.

 

Draco leaned over taking the dripping fruit in his lips; it was good…if Harry wanted a fountain he was getting one.

 

Harry couldn’t suppress a giggle when Draco ate the cherry from his fingers.

 

Draco chuckled at the embarrassed lion, deftly tying the cherry stem in a bow with his tongue and withdrawing it from his lips. “Tada.”

 

Harry had vaguely heard that was possible but had never met anyone who could do it. He shivered wondering what else his boyfriend could do with his tongue...

 

Draco and Harry as well as Blaise and Charlie continuing to feed each other morsels dipping in steaming rich chocolate until they ran out of credits.

 

Angelina was leaning against Fred shyly, her cheeks tinted pink after eating chocolate dipped strawberries from his fingers.

 

A shy Theo and sweet treat loving Greg paid to try it.

 

Theo was paying for Luna while Greg reluctantly paid for both himself and Mal to try it.

 

Mafalda had never had chocolate fondue as Harry called in but she’d had chocolate covered things before. She had a bit of a sweet tooth herself.

 

Still a bit unsure about this Luna fed herself avoiding a more romantic or sensual scene the other couples were playing out.

 

Greg was always keen to try a new sweet but he was embarrassed that the byplay between his prince and his consort as well as his prince’s second and their second chaperone was making him very uncomfortable.

 

After they had all finished their experiencing of the delights of a fountain filled with Honeyduke’s finest melted chocolate as well as buying their own treats, they made their way a bit away from the centre of Hogsmeade heading closer to the Shrieking Shack. Where they were planning to discuss where or what they would all like to eat. Unless of course they wanted to shop in the Rue de Lion first…

 

The girls were more eager to shop.

 

They had just decided to portkey directly to the Rue de Lion district when a haughty voice called out. “Well if it isn’t the little princling, his whore, the wanna-be King and Queen of Slytherin and their precious court.”

 

Draco seethed internally, “Leave my presence wench.” Yet his face showed no sign of his intense dislike for the girl.

 

“That is not the way to talk to a lady, son. Much less the girl who is your fiancée.” Narcissa Black, his father's former Bondmate and the woman who bore him slinked out of the shadows.

 

Draco sucked in a breath, he knew that voice, “I wouldn’t Bond with her if she was the last person of Wizarding blood left in the world. You have no say in my life woman. You never did.”

 

“That is not how you talk to your mother. Even someone who has your father’s weak blood should understand the concept of proper respect.”

 

“You are not my mother, you bore me yes but it was papa who cared for me and taught me. You bought me clothes yes but you had little to do with me until I misbehaved and you wanted to use the Cruciatus Curse on me to punish me for my disobedience.” Draco growled, “I want nothing to do with you.”

 

“I’ll teach you some respect. You and that pathetic Halfblood slut you fed chocolate.” Narcissa sneered.

 

“He acts like a Muggle; he was enticing you to have your way with him in front of Honeydukes. Whores moan like he did. He acts more like a girl then a boy, maybe you should put him in dresses and make him wear panties.” Pansy said in deadly cold voice and an icy smile.

 

No one noticed how quickly Blaise’s face changed from the flush of anger to embarrassment.

 

Two wands were raised.

 

“Cru,”

 

A deep growl was heard and then the sound of running.

 

Remus’ ears twitched, as did the one Veela and handful of Chuvash.

 

A large black dog had emerged from the shadows.

 

Remus was shocked; he’d been snuck up on. Both the mad women and the dog had been up wind so he hadn’t smelled them until they were nearly upon them. He recognized the dog as it got closer.” “Sir…Padfoot! Merlin.” Where the hell had he been since sending the Howler?

 

Harry gasped, hearing the name Padfoot, Sirius, his godfather was here?

 

Draco held Harry to his chest having spun around to take the brunt of the curses to protect his mate.

 

Harry shook, those two were crazy…Draco could not be that woman’s son. How could she want to hurt him? What had he ever done to her? They’d barely met once at the Quidditch World Cup.

 

The dog growled as he crashed into the two possibly mad females but not before they finished the incantation.

 

Draco was already biting back cries of pain; he couldn’t believe how much the Cruciatus hurt. He could see how the pain might drive you insane. Unlike Chuvash, Veela didn’t have spell resistance until they reached their inheritance and it was their wings that protected them.

 

The dog snapped the girl’s wand in his jaws when he tackled her; he cracked her with his tail knocking her out cold with a move that appeared second nature.

 

Narcissa barely had time to cry out when the bear-sized dog crashed into her.

 

The dog growled, pinning her to the ground his hot dirty breath in her face. There was a slight ripple of magic.

 

There came a large deep voice thick with anger, “Remus, get Harry out of here. I don’t care about the others but get Harry away. I’ll take care of this stupid woman.” The dog leaned his muzzle closer, “Hello cousin. I’m back. Maybe it’s time I remembered where my loyalties lie. You attempted to curse my godson! I should kill you!”

 

Harry had caught Draco when he crumpled; he rocked his protector who gasped in remembered pain. He yelled, “Don’t you dare Sirius! Damn it Remus, send for Dora.”

 

Remus stiffened; he shouldn’t have to be yelled at by his charge. He sighed, “I can’t let you do that Siri. I’m sorry about this but I have my reasons.” He held up his wand, “Incarcerous.”

 

Ropes sprang from Remus’ wand and soon Narcissa Black, Pansy Parkinson and former Auror Sirius Black were all restrained.

 

Remus sensed Sirius was both furious at him and about to shift, “Don’t. You’ll cause a panic. I’m turning you in only so your sentence can be thrown out. Pensive evidence regarding the traitor was recently reviewed by Magical Law Enforcement.”

 

The dog glared, “You traitor!”

 

Harry snapped, “Remus isn’t a traitor. He’s looking out for you. If you do anything more we can’t help you.”

 

“I can’t believe you’d touch a Malfoy.”

 

Remus strode over to Sirius, “Watch your tongue, else you’ll make an enemy of Harry. I’ll explain soon.” He called for Dobby, “I need you to quickly locate Auror Tonks.  I believe she was spending the day at the Ministry unless she’s still at St. Mungos.”

 

“I’ll get you Remus.” Sirius III growled.

 

Blaise had finally recovered from shock, he summoned his elf Amry, curtly informing him, “Draco’s been attacked. Locate Healer Tonks and Healer Smythe.” He had to be sure the curse hadn’t injured his friend.

 

Neville was in awe of the Veela who had changed a lot from the boy who used to bully him. He took the Cruciatus without screaming? Either he had a high tolerance for pain or…there was something special about him. He wondered if that was how his dad took the Cruciatus Curse. He was the child of heroes; he just wished he’d been more like them.

 

Adrian reached out and lightly patted his shoulder absently as he sensed his emotional turmoil.

 

 

 

XoooooX

 

Dora was about to floo to St. Mungos when a slightly familiar house elf popped up in front of her before she reached the floo.

 

Dobby’s eyes were wide, “Missy Dora, Dobby be looking for you. Master Harry Potter, young master Malfoy. Your Aunt…”

 

Dora didn’t need to hear more, she could guess. “Take me.”

 

Dobby took her arm in his long fingers and they disappeared.

 

 

 

XoooooX

 

Amry reappeared with both Healers.

 

Ted and Healer Smythe saw Draco on the ground and hurried to attend to their patient.

 

Dora arrived to see Harry kneelling in front of Draco, the Malfoy heir being examined by her father. She walked towards her mother’s youngest sister, some raven-haired unconscious girl in a Slytherin uniform and a dog. It took a minute to realize that this bear-sized dog was not the Grim that haunted churchyards or prophesised death. It was her mother’s cousin Sirius. “Well this is a productive day for the Ministry or at least for the Aurors. We have had a string of arrests recently. Last night an escaped prisoner was arrested. His father who facilitated his escape, Pettigrew and the Dark Lord were captured today. Many thanks Remus. I’m sure with Pettigrew and my cousin, fellow Auror Black the whole night of October 31st, 1981 will properly be understood. So what did these two women do?”

 

Harry glared, “Insulted me, upset Draco and then cast the Cruciatus curse on us.” He glanced at Draco who was lying down while he was examined, “Draco…took the curse for both of us…”

 

Sirius flinched.

 

Dora collected the two wands, conjured a set of stretchers levitating her three prisoners onto them. I shall do my best to see that you, Severus and Lucius are properly thanked for your efforts. We, the Wizarding world owe you a debt.” She activated her emergency portkey to the Auror department while retaining her grip on the three stretchers after tying them together and holding on tight to them.

 

Ted glanced at Remus; “The Cruciatus was a shock to his system, especially since he’s never been subject to it before. He needs rest and chocolate. I don’t recommend much activity today.”

 

Draco winced, “I’m no invalid. We need to go shopping for the Yule Ball. I promised.”

 

Harry said quietly, “Maybe you should do as they say.”

 

“I won’t let that woman spoil our first real date. It affected my nerves by inflicting pain. Just give me a pain-reliving potion that affects nerve pain. I can handle it.” Draco said standing after finally catching his breath.

 

Adrian stared at the former solo leader of their House, “Are you sure you should disregard the healers’ advice?”

 

“Please don’t order me to bed.” Draco said firmly, “I won’t let Harry down, I promised him a date. That woman won’t spoil it. Besides, I owe my cousins Thena and Sophronia lovely, expensive dress robes. Harry also needs a set that reflect his rank in the Wizarding World and our House.”

 

“Should we let him?” Charlie leaned over to ask Remus.

 

Remus sighed, “I know his fathers left me in charge. I understand why he wants to keep his original plans.”

 

“It’s ok.” Harry said reaching for Draco’s hand, “I don’t need,”

 

Draco moved, pulled him close and kissed him lightly, noting Harry still tasted like chocolate.

 

Harry couldn’t hold back the moan, the same type of moan he was called a whore for making.

 

Draco reluctantly broke the kiss, “Please? We’ll just shop and eat, I promise to sit most of the time.”

 

“Dobby not mean to speak out of turn. Maybe tell Master Lucius? Let him decide?”

 

Remus swallowed; if the Dark Lord was captured did that mean they were back? That had only taken a few hours…he was the adult in charge so he should make the decision.  “Alright, we’ll go but the moment you seem tired we’re coming back.”

 

Harry frowned at Remus, he had been excited before but now he was just worried.

 

“We can’t be gone too long since we’re eating dinner as a family at the Manor. I convinced the house elves to let Harry cook.” Draco gave them both a small smile.

 

Harry’s jaw dropped, “Cook? You’ll let me cook?”

 

Draco chuckled, “Yes, anything you want.” He was still very sore, his whole body ached but he was not going to cancel or postpone his first date with Harry.

 

Reluctantly Remus decided to make the portkey but the only place in Rue de Leon that he knew was the doorstep of that fancy French restaurant they ate at on Sunday so that was where he decided to aim the portkey.

 

 

 

XoooooX

 

Severus and Lucius returned to the Manor having decided to return there rather then Hogwarts to give Remus and the boys some time together.

 

Upon exiting the floo Lucius closed it and smirked, “You were pretty sexy this morning. Weaving all that magic…”

 

Severus couldn’t suppress a shiver, “You were too when you told off those idiot Aurors.”

 

Lucius was definitely not ready to share yet; in fact he was in the mood to try to make his mate forget Remus existed for a while. He lifted up the skinny potioneer, “what do you say we go claim the Lord of the Manor’s bedroom now that we have the Manor to ourselves?”

 

Severus swallowed, the desire clear in Lucius’ eyes. “Yes.” Living with Remus had put a damper on their sex life. His arse didn’t like being so tight and dry, he much preferred it to be loose and wet. He wished he could have both…but he’d belonged to Lucius for so long that he couldn’t bear to hurt him. He was sexually attracted to the werewolf and they were supposed to be mates but that didn’t erase the guilt from his heart…

 

Lucius kissed him hard, “I think…” he smirked, “we need to shower…”

 

Severus felt his prick harden at the thought, Lucius looked like a god naked and dripping with water.

 

Lucius made his way to the room he’d been dreaming of having Severus in since the first day he saw the second year in the shower.

 

Severus was surprised, it was different then he expected.

 

Lucius had arranged to have the rooms stripped, scrubbed completely redecorated.  There were silk silver curtains and velvet green draperies framing the windows tied back with silver sashes with green tassels. The floor had a jade green antique carpet, a bed large enough for two (or three) full-grown men to fuck. The sheets were green silk edged with silver, Severus had sensitive skin and he once mentioned he found the feel of silk erotic.

 

There were tapestries of beautiful men engaged in different forms of sexual pleasure adorning the walls

 

Everything that had adorned this room before had been destroyed

 

The electric lights had been replaced with oil lamps and chandleries with slow but bright burning candles.

 

With a whispered spell, Lucius lit both lamps and candles driving away the shadows cast by the dim winter sunlight through the silver curtains.

 

Severus said quietly, “You did this?” it resembled the rooms Lucius had had first as a prefect and then as a Head Boy. It was in a room like this that Lucius had taken his virginity. The first time he had been treated gently and with care not long before he’d become pregnant, later as he became more vigorous during sex. He’d been fourteen and a half, it was just after Lucius returned from Spring Holidays that he’d agreed to do more then snogging, snuggling, mutual wanking and letting his seventh Year boyfriend suck his prick. Then came the lonely summer, it was that summer that his father locked him in a tiny closet for days. He’d hid out at Lily’s as much as he could, it would be his first year without Lucius in the Dungeon.

 

He would be lonelier then ever that year, he’d fight with Lily losing her when he called her a Mudblood that fall as well as discover Remus was a werewolf, accruing a life debt to that toerag Potter and discovering his pregnancy only to lose it. Lily had ignored him for weeks, almost until Christmas until she overheard a conversation between Slughorn and Nurse Pomfrey about the fact that Severus had been ill previously, she’d been so angry with him that she hadn’t noticed. When Pomfrey informed Slughorn that he’d been suffering morning sickness rather then the flu, she told him that she’d dropped her books. She’d been sent to give Slughorn a message from Flitwick. She’d lied and claimed she’d been carrying too many books and dropped them. They had been OWLS review books for potions so Slughorn believed her.

 

It had been a secret correspondence, which even Potter didn’t know about at first. Lily hadn’t wanted to cause him any more trouble by being friends so they’d kept pairing journals. Lily’s had been scarlet leather with a golden lion while his own had been a green leather with a silver serpent of course. They both apologized; Lily lectured him for not telling her about the baby. He’d been shocked that she knew, Lily was good at keeping secrets and never told. She begged him to tell Lucius but by then it was too late, the baby was gone and Lucius was officially engaged to Narcissa who paraded around as the Consort to the former Prince of Slytherin showing off her ring. Severus had told Lily that Abraxus had bought it and gave it to her after the papers were signed. She’d raged that Lucius wouldn’t ‘pull an Andromeda’ and elope. She’d said handsome is as handsome does. She had choice words for Lucius for allowing himself to be tied to that loathsome git Sirius’ nauseating cousin Narcissa.

 

Lucius undressed him, kissing his neck, “Why are you so quiet?”

 

“Just thinking…”

 

“How happy Lily would have been that you finally tossed that woman out on her arse. She had some choice words for you when she heard that you were engaged to that loathsome wench. She told me if you really were the right man for me you’d ‘pull an Andromeda’.”

 

Lucius winced, “I should have.”

 

“Perhaps, but we’re together now and Draco is ours.” Severus said, quite aware that he was naked and Lucius was not. He looked up at his Bondmate, “I know you’re my Dominant but if we’re going to shower you need a lot less clothes.”

 

Lucius smirked banishing their clothes to a small basket where the house elves could retrieve them later. He carried the naked man whose face and hands were streaked with dust to their refurbished bathroom.

 

Inside it was like walking into a different space…

 

There was a waterfall rather then a shower, the rock made from smoothed limestone. The water was not truly hot but not really warm either. It was the perfect temperature…

 

Lucius pinned Severus to the wall beneath the waterfall, it cascaded over them as he kissed him. He ground his prick against his mate’s.

 

Severus felt the natural caress of the water mix with Lucius’ grinding. His cock was hard, he could barely look at Lucius he was so gorgeous...this was beyond anything he dreamed.

 

Lucius summoned some fizzy cleansing potion that Severus adored; pouring it on his hands he rubbed it all over the slim man’s body. The water washing it away, then he pulled Severus to his chest, pouring some wonderful hemp shampoo into his hand and massaging it into that soft hair, “I hate that fire-retardant potion. It smells and I hate what it does to your hair…”

 

Severus considering it a necessity but did his best to remember to wash it out if he was going to spend time with Lucius. He liked it when his Prince ran those long fingers through his hair or tugged it when he sucked him off.

 

After washing Severus’ hair, he smirked, “Your turn.”

 

Severus located Lucius’ favourite body wash on a rocky ledge nearby. Covering his hands he washed his mate’s body; circling his nipples, rubbing his thighs, stroking his cock, washing his bollocks gently. When he was done he looked up at Lucius, before leaning over to lap up a drop of pre-cum about to be washed away.

 

Lucius shook his head, “No.” he licked his lips, “Knees.”

 

Severus winced slightly but moved so he was on his hands and knees, not from pain but from the ache the absence of Remus seemed to bring.

 

Lucius sat behind him, spread those pale arse cheeks that bore faint scaring, his tongue darting out to tease the familiar hole.

 

Severus whimpered, Lucius had always been able to do this to him…rip away his defences. He was naturally a sensitive, sensual person who could come to care a lot about people he was drawn to. Lily was like a sister despite being his best friend, Lucius was his idol, his…lover, and then there was Draco the son of his heart. He ached for the child that he’d carried and despite the numerous sexual encounters since he’d never conceived because of what Dumbledore had done. He would have been sobbing but that dexterous tongue was delving in and out of his arse. He thrust back against it, eager for more, “Luc…please…”

 

“Tell me what you want Sev.” Lucius tease circling the entrance with the tip of his tongue.

 

Severus groaned wantonly, “Fuck me damn it. It’s been too long…”

 

“First you must do something for me…”

 

Severus moved taking Lucius’ cock in his mouth, licking and sucking on it. Lucius had always been very well endowed, at first it was the sight of him fully aroused that both excited him and made him fearful. After all how could something so large fit inside him? Lucius had been too big to wrap his hand around. He’s grown since then but Lucius was still larger then he was in many respects. Lucius was 182 centimetres and he was only 176, he pulled back, leaving his mate’s large cock dripping. “How do you want me?” he didn’t care about their size difference there, mostly because he adored how it felt to have Lucius inside him.

 

Lucius picked him up, carrying him over to the bath he’s had constructed. It was about waist high and hot, but in the water were aphrodisiac potions. He sat in one of the fashioned seats spreading Severus’ legs smirking, “Ride me.”

 

Severus groaned as he felt Lucius’ cock hard beneath him and he pushed down letting it delve deep into him until the large pulsing organ bottomed out. “Merlin…”

 

They kissed eagerly as Severus adjusted to a cock in his arse.

 

Lucius pinched, tugged and twisted Severus’ nipples enjoying the moans as they kissed.

 

Severus moaned wantonly as he rode Lucius, it had been far too long since they’d had sex. He loved his Bondmate, but he wasn’t girly enough to admit they made love even if it was true. He still felt all the love and lust he’d always felt for his prince but he did feel a bit lost, empty. They’d only made love once or twice since finding out Remus was supposed to be his mate too. He hated himself for wanting Remus but Remus was with the boys where he needed to be but he wished Remus were here too.

 

Lucius thrust up to met his mate’s arse as it rode him; he liked keeping his Severus on edge. He teased his Bondmate’s prick and bollocks with his fingers, stroking, caressing, and squeezing.

 

Severus came hard, he hated coming first but he had less control then Lucius and tired easier. He needed more then just this…

 

Lucius changed their positions, ploughing Sev’s arse wanting him to come from being fucked once before he let himself orgasm.

 

Severus was grateful the warmth of the water cleaned away most of his seed but he could still feel Lucius’ deep inside him.

 

Lucius lifted his Bondmate up, casting drying charms on them both as they left the bathroom.

 

Severus found himself dozing off only to vaguely be aware that they’d ended up between the silk sheets. He sighed with contentment as he felt Lucius’ familiar body behind him.

 

 

Chapter Text

Chapter 24

Upon portkeying into the Rue de Leon district in Paris, Draco chose to head for Gringotts to withdraw monies to pay for his cousins Sophronia and Luna as well as lunch most likely.

 

The party was large and mostly underage so they received odd looks from Parisian witches and wizards who expected students to be at school. The French Ministry for Magic was also in the Rue de Leon district unlike in London where the Ministry, Magical hospital and Gringotts were all in various parts of London, the Rue de Leon was the centre of all Wizarding business, politics and shopping housed in what would to French Muggles appear to be an untamed or unreclaimed swampland that was quite forbidding or so French Wizards and witches claimed.

 

Draco filled a large bag with money from his vault shrinking it to fit in a pocket in his robe, while Adrian and Charlie withdrew as well. Remus removed some from Harry’s vault in case his charge decided he wanted to buy something.

 

Celestine's Boutique since it was closest to Gringotts and he could spend most of the time sitting so that was where Draco led them next.

 

For a Muggle-raised girl like Mafalda Prewett now known as Sophronia who had watched the telly growing up unlike Harry, Celestine’s Boutique was more like one of those fancy stores most likely to be frequented by the upper-crust of British society.

 

It was a large store having about three floors, although the lower floor clearly dated the building to a far earlier era the upper floors had been added on as the both demand and supplies of pricey, well made clothing for the well-to-do witch increased. [For the Muggle think something like Forever 21 or something]

 

Unlike Luna and Mafalda, Angelina had been to Celestine’s a few times before since she came from a rather well off family.

 

Draco who had little knowledge of proper fashion for witches turned to her, “Ms. Johnson, I’m more familiar with wizard fashion rather then for wealthy witches, I would be extremely grateful if you and Tracey would help Miss Sophronia and Miss Thena with their shopping. They need appropriate dress robes for the Yule Ball. If you notice anything else that would be appropriate for young heiresses that would expand their wardrobe I would appreciate that as well.

 

Blaise tried very hard not to notice the lingerie section located on the enchanted map that said it was on the third floor. He would not betray his private interest in such things.

 

Angelina blushed, stammering, “Of course.” She glanced at the map, “Under things come first. I hate to split us up but it would be best if we went up,”

 

Blaise noticed Fred’s smirk and interrupted, “I’ll go. I can be an impartial observer. I’m supposed to be here as a guardian.”

 

Draco nodded, “Very well. There is a lounge over there we can wait for you.”

 

Blaise followed the four girls; Angelina, Tracey, Sophronia and Luna.

 

Fred was jealous but considering that Blaise was like his twin attracted to wizards rather then pretty witches he didn’t care so much.

 

Harry curled up next to Draco, still worried about him. Draco looked paler then usual and weak; the double bout of Cruciatus Curse had affected his boyfriend more then the Slytherin wanted to admit.

 

Charlie wasn’t happy Blaise had left the group but was pleased that Fred hadn’t been allowed to go. His hopefully reformed playboy of a brother loose in a store selling lingerie with his girlfriend sounded like a very bad idea indeed.

 

Remus remembered helping his mother shop before she took ill. He was grateful that Draco had the foresight to send the girls to shop for private things alone.

 

Angelina returned in forty minutes, their selections wrapped in brown paper and twine. Her three charges carried their packages while she handed the receipt to Draco. “I know it looks expensive but they needed them. It’s just a total; I didn’t think you really wanted to know what we choose." She had her own purchase clenched in her hand.

 

Blaise was just behind them trying to assume the role of a bodyguard, he’d been tempted to purchase a few items but he hadn’t had a chance trying to keep track of four females. Not that he was keen on anyone knowing about his vice…

 

Draco nodded, glancing at the total and gesturing for a shopkeeper to come over. He paid the sum and glanced at Angelina, “Dress robes now or are there other things they need?”

 

Angelina was thoughtful, “We’ll have to find proper shoes somewhere else. Celestine’s doesn’t have a wide enough selection. For now we can head to shop for their dress robes. For witches dress robes come in various styles. I have to decide what suits them best. Both are heiresses so their choice of dress has to reflect a certain elegance but it also has to suggest personal taste. Sophronia strikes me as a bit of a tomboy, I’m thinking fancy dress boots, flowing black silk trousers with a silver design and a long knee length tunic probably green with a slit on both sides.”

 

Mafalda was surprised, “That sounds like something I would wear.”

 

Draco nodded, “It sounds classy and would look ravishing I’m sure with her dark auburn hair.” Sophronia’s hair was a dark reddish brown, a mix of the Prewett thick red hair and the dark wavy hair of the Blacks.

 

Greg who had been dozing, had woken up and was dry mouthed at the thought of the Queen of Slytherin in such an unusual and most likely trend-setting outfit. If she wore it to the Yule Ball, quite a few Slytherin girls would attempt to wear a similar outfit at a later date.

 

“Now Thena is a difficult case…” Angelina mused circling her, “I don’t know enough about her other then she’s a Third Year Ravenclaw.”

 

Tracey Davis seemed to have an innate sense of fashion and she hadn’t needed any assistance. She had chin length straight brown hair, blue-green eyes and silver spectacles. Tracey had chosen a pine green woollen dress that came to her knees with silver cuffs and pearl buttons. She wore a green cloak lined with fur, leather boots lined with similar fur and black slacks that had a wool look to them as well.

 

Draco glanced up at his cousin, “Do her a favour, drag her into the loo over then and give her a look.”

 

Luna sighed, growing up with a rather imaginative father who lived for conspiracy theories and ran his controversial paper, the Quibbler out of their home she had little access to female role models after her mother died. “Alright, if you think it’s necessary. You do know this could backfire.” Her true identity was important to keep to as few people as possible to keep it away from the odious Headmaster.

 

Draco shrugged, “If she betrays you, she betrays Fred. I seriously doubt she would be capable of that.” Especially since she obviously worshiped the ground he walked on…

 

Angelina was a bit upset that this Ravenclaw would be worried she’d tell anything to that louse the Headmaster after hearing how the situation regarding the cursed bedstead was handled as well as witnessing the incident when Harry returned. What was so important about this Ravenclaw that she would be so secretive?

 

Luna sighed, gently taking Angelina’s arm, “Let’s get this over with. I’d prefer not to do this but if you really must see.”

 

Angelina let the secretive girl led her off.

 

Charlie nudged Remus, “What’s up with her?”

 

Remus had guessed 'Thena who was introduced, as Draco’s cousin was none other then the Seer of the Veela Queen. He shrugged, “Not my place to tell and it’s not safe to discuss in a place like this.”

 

Nodding Charlie had no choice but to accept it.

 

Angelina came back tongue-tied after three minutes in the loo with Luna, “I see…that makes sense now. I think a midnight blue long flowing Grecian like toga with silver accents would compliment her looks well.”

 

Draco laughed, “Ms. Johnson if you ever decide to give up Quidditch, I see a long and glorious career as a fashion consultant before you.”

 

Angelina blushed; she adored clothes and always dressed well. “I never considered that.” She had excellent marks, not like Bill or Percy but decent, plenty of O and EE on her assignments and OWLS. She did enjoy flying but the idea of being a fashion consultant intrigued her.

 

Mafalda grinned, “If I’m supposed to be a Queen of Slytherin of all things, I certainly can’t run around dressed like a Muggle. If I had money of my own I’d hire you.”

 

Angelina smirked, “You’ll end up breaking both hearts and ideas of fashion. I can see you running around in leather capes rather then robes. You’d wear tight slacks; have a large collection of boots in various styles. Plenty of flowing tops long like tunics and vests of different fabrics or leather.”

 

“What about me?” Luna asked, her mother died when she was nine so she had no one to advise her.

 

“You seem the type to wear flowing dresses. Perhaps,” Angelina said thoughtfully, “A Muggle thing called leggings and short dresses. I don’t see you as a robe kind of witch either. You’d probably suit a knee length velvet cape with white fur trim and heels in Wizarding public. All though for more formal events at court you’d probably favour golden sandals.”

 

Luna nodded, “Sounds like me.”

 

“Well cousin,” Draco began, “Why don’t we see if we can find some of those things? At least we need the dresses but I don’t see why we can’t expand your wardrobe. A person of your rank should dress appropriately.”

 

A rather reluctant group of boys stood up.

 

Draco sighed, “Charlie, why don’t you take Fred, Vince, Greg, Adrian and Neville to Quality Quidditch? It’s just around the corner. Blaise and Remus can stay with us to watch the girls try on their clothes since I’m paying for them.”

 

Charlie shrugged, he wasn’t keen on splitting up again but he saw the point. Most of their group was bored. Straight wizards don’t usually don’t enjoy shopping with witches, honestly he wondered exactly how many bent wizards would. So he chose to usher the boys in his charge out heading for the Paris branch of Quality Quidditch.

 

Angelina led Luna, Tracey, Sophronia, Harry, Draco, Blaise and Remus to the section on the second floor containing clothing in the style she saw for Sophronia. Knowing Draco needed to sit and that Harry wouldn’t leave his side she piled clothes in Sophronia and Tracey’s arms. After she was satisfied they had enough she dragged Sophronia over to one of the velvet curtained dressing room, “Try them on.”

 

Luna watched curious to this whole adventure knowing that it would in time be her turn.

 

Blaise had spent so little time with his mother; it was his adopted family the Goyles who took the most time for him. Although his deceased stepfather had no children he was treated as one of the family. It was Lady Gabrielle Goyle who took him shopping if Professor Snape didn’t. When he did see his mother nowadays she was too busy absentmindedly instructing him on how to be a good Dominant. He didn’t care about that…

 

Draco was pleased with many of the striking outfits that Angelina created, passing one in at a time for Sophronia to try on before making her model them.

 

Angelina gave each outfit a critical eye, shaking her head at a few of them before saying she didn’t like them. The last outfit she handed to the Slytherin Queen was quite similar to the one she’d envisioned for her to wear to the Yule ball.

 

Mafalda exited the dressing room, and turned in a circle while looking at herself in a mirrored alcove. She was surprised not only did they have an outfit just like the one the Gryffindor Prefect and Quidditch Captain described that it suited her well.

 

Remus who was in no way attracted to young Miss Prewett, the new Queen of Slytherin, was surprised how well the outfit suited her.

 

Draco was relaxing in a settee not far from the mirror, he clapped his hands, “Capital. That will do very fine. I agree, there will be many members of our illustrious circle who will be seeking our similar clothing.”

 

Harry didn’t miss the flicker of pain that crossed Draco’s face when he moved, he fretted. He blamed himself for not insisting that his boyfriend rest, he was worried that Severus and Lucius would be angry with him…

 

Blaise also noticed, as did Luna.

 

Luna sighed, inching away from the other three girls. Her power was hidden beneath her Glamour. With a whispered spell to cloak her Veela magic, she reached out with a light touch resting her hand on Draco’s arm.

 

Draco felt the warm embrace of golden light as it encompassed him, when it dissipated he found he could breathe without pain. He reached to cover his cousin’s hand with his own, he mouthed a silent apology, he knew using her powers could bring attention to her and he was loathed to put her in danger. Which was why he hadn’t asked her to heal the damage the Cruciatus Curse had done, he was also too proud to ask and had been determined to continue his plans for the day.  He gestured for a shop girl to retrieve the outfits that Angelina had decided suited Sophronia best after his Queen emerged from the dressing room in her original attire.

 

Mafalda began to protest.

 

“It’s nothing my dear, think of it as a gift. You suffered over two years of indignation before your true rank was revealed. I was remiss in my duties for not truly discovering your relationship to Slytherin House. Consider it a gift, thirteen years worth of Christmas and Birthday gifts that you should have received my Queen.” Draco said waving his hand dismissively of her attempts to protest. He spoke to the shop girl in exquisite French, tell her to tally up quickly, if she hurried that there would a Galleon tip for her.

 

The girl disappeared post haste.

 

Angelina led the party off to shop for Luna whom she knew as Thena for she had only been introduced to the Veela Ravenclaw’s true appearance and not her name.

 

 

XoooooX

 

Ms.Molly Prewett had quickly found herself escorted despite her protests to a cell, which she shared with no one.

 

Although since Ministry Cells overseen by the Aurors were not segregated she was placed in the same cellblock as the rat-faced Peter Pettigrew, mad escaped Azkaban Prisoner Barty Crouch Jr. and Percy’s boss Bartimus Crouch, former Head of the Ministry for Magic Department. She railed how a lady should not be housed with male prisoners.

 

Where upon an Auror who she didn’t recognize from the days when Arthur was amoung their number sniffed, “You are no lady." and left her protesting in a shrill voice.

 

“Be glad when that bint is off our hands.” The Auror said to his colleague in charge of the cellblock.

 

“I hope those goblins take her off our hands. With all the things I heard she did, Azkaban might not be a harsh enough sentence. Last lady who went in to a Goblin Prison came out and promptly burnt to death. The one before that never came out. Musta died there.”

 

 

XoooooX

 

Delivering yet another prisoner or three to the Ministry was not Dora’s idea of a ‘relaxing vacation’, which is what she was on officially. She felt bad having to take her cousin Sirius Black but summoned her mother’s aging house elf Draper insisting she inform her mistress that her cousin Sirius was in custody and that she would expect to meet her in the Auror Department.

 

Annoyed Dora located an empty interview room, leaving her prisoners and going to locate Shacklebolt who also had the Potters’ case as well as the case against Molly Prewett. She rapped on his office door.

 

“Come in.”

 

Dora opened the door and entered.

 

“Auror Tonks? I thought you were returning to St. Mungos?”

 

“I was. Until of course I was Summoned by Remus Lupin. Draco Malfoy and Harry Potter were attacked in Hogsmeade. He managed to restrain Narcissa Black, a Miss Parkinson and a large dog he claimed is my mother’s cousin Sirius. I informed Mother, as she is the defacto Head of the Black Family regarding Sirius. I’m not sure what her reaction to her youngest sister’s arrest will be. She did little with Bellatrix, I doubt she with budge much for Narcissa.”

 

“How was the Boy Who Lived attacked?”

 

“My cousin Draco shielded Harry, taking the Cruciatus Curse twice.” Dora reported swiftly.

 

“Young Mister Malfoy is only fourteen, being hit twice with the Cruciatus Curse…by his own mother?” Kingsley Shacklebolt’s face was grim, “It’s an automatic prison sentence to cast an Unforgivable if caught. How old is Miss Parkinson?”

 

“I believe she is in the same year and house as my cousin. I know that Sirius has been on the run but he was reportedly in the defense of his godson.” Dora replied.

 

“I see. They are?”

 

“In an interview room waiting for you.” Dora handed over Parkinson and her aunt’s wand, retrieving them from her Auror’s robe, “I expect you’ll want to have them tested and stored in evidence.”

 

“To attack to heirs of ancient blood lines, is not only illegal but it is a death sentence under the archaic laws. I wonder how their Guardians will insist we handle it.”

 

“I should have summoned Lord Malfoy.”

 

“Why don’t you go firecall him while I put these away and meet you in the interview room. Which one?”

 

“Number four, the others were in use.” Dora said disappearing to inform her patron that his only child had been attacked.

 

 

XoooooX

 

Lucius was napping when a faint tap on his bare shoulder woke him.

 

“Treca sorry to wake Master. Master be having fire call form Ministry. It be Missy Dora.”

 

Lucius kissed Severus’ hair, “Be right there.” He slipped out of bed and dressed in appropriate robes, if Dora was calling from the Ministry, most likely the Auror department something was up. He made his way to his study.

 

Dora heard his familiar footstep, “Lord Malfoy.”

 

Lucius noted her tone and responded in kind, “Auror.”

 

“I regret to inform you that your son was attacked this afternoon in Hogsmeade. Thanks to the quick reaction of Mr. Lupin his attackers were apprehended.”

 

Lucius was livid, “Draco? Attacked? Who dared lay a hand on my son?” he thundered, his Veela was outraged.

 

“Your former Bondmate Narcissa Black and a fellow student Miss Parkinson. They attempted to curse both Draco and Harry with the Cruciatus. Your son in an effort to protect Harry took both curses. Healers Smythe and Tonks who were summoned immediately and have seen him. Though restrained by Mr. Lupin, they were actually prevented from another attack by escaped prisoner Sirius Black. All three of which are currently in custody. Mistress Tonks has been summoned on Sirius’ behalf and may have some input as to her sister’s presence here. The punishment is up to you who speak for the persons attacked.” Dora said quickly.

 

“That woman attacked my son? Under the archaic laws her life is forfeit. Parkinson is young but clearly wrongfully influenced; I will accept a life-sentence for her. As for that Woman I’ll demand the rite of Blood Vengeance. Draco stands at present heir to two Ancient Houses as does Harry, I want that woman’s life, her worldly assets to be spit between both victims. I’ll sue the Parkinsons for their heiress’ inheritance; if Andromeda joins me in that suit we’ll split that as well.” Lucius was out for blood, Veela he maybe but even creatures of light have a desire for vengeance. As a Veela defending his offspring, killing either female would not merit him any punishment. The act would be condoned under Veela law and the Ministry could not charge him for it. 

 

“Very well my Lord, we shall expect you soon. The prisoners will be questioned and then you are welcome to file while they are in custody.” Dora said before her head disappeared from the fire and the green fire disappeared.

 

Lucius summoned Treca informing her to tell Severus upon rising that he had been called to the Ministry and would return as soon as he could. He knew that Malfoy elves were no doubt aware of Draco’s attack. He informed her sharply that Severus was not to be informed of Draco’s attack.

 

The poor elf had no choice but to promise.

 

It was a vengeful Lucius that stepped into the floo tossing floo powder and snapping, “Ministry of Magic, London.”

 

 

XoooooX

 

Andromeda encountered Lucius at the entrance to the Auror Department on the floor housing the Department of Magical Law Enforcement.

 

They nodded at one another, their faces wearing identical grim expressions.

 

Dora was pacing and gestured for them to follow her.

 

The three entered the interview room where Dora showed them to comfortable chairs, which two lesser skilled Aurors who were accepted prior to herself had placed them.

 

“Thank you for coming Mistress Tonks and Lord Malfoy, your presence is both a pleasure and a courtesy.” Shacklebolt said politely, reminding them that they were not allowed to question. He nodded at Lord Malfoy, “Our most sincere thanks for your little hunting expedition this morning, I apologize that you felt the need to do as you did but we are in fact grateful for your assistance.”

 

Dora chuckled, “Between Lord Malfoy and myself we’ve arrested no less then six persons, while retrieving two escapees from Azkaban. Rest assured your lordship we’ll take care that similar escapes cannot be attempted.”

 

Shacklebolt nodded, “Perhaps, since Auror Black has been treated most dreadfully, that we should deal with him first.”

 

Dora shrugged, while her mother nodded, “I may not think much of my cousin but he does after all this time deserve justice.”

 

Sirius III was presentably ungagged. “Justice? Hah!” he said scornfully, “The Ministry doesn’t know the meaning of the word.”

 

“Perhaps we didn’t. However evidence has come to light from both young Mr. Potter and Pettigrew that prove your innocence. However we would like you to submit for the record your memories regarding the night the Potters died.”

 

Sirius’ eyes widened, “Does that mean I’ll be freed?”

 

Andromeda chose to speak, “As Harry’s voice in political matters and considering that our Minister for Magic saw fit to have your case re-investigated I will be quite insistent on your immediate release and an apology. However, before I consider stepping down and allowing you to assume the mantle of Lord Black there will be certain things you’ll have to be informed of. Harry has been removed from Lily’s sister’s care. He is currently under the care of a mind healer and a well respected healer.”

 

Sirius III was outraged, “What did that horse-faced Muggle bitch do to my godson?” he growled, “and what is Malfoy doing here? He’s a Death Eater! I never understood why he didn’t get tossed into Azkaban and the key forgotten. If anyone deserved it, its him.”

 

Lucius had no love for this Sirius Black yet went on in a silky voice, “Auror Black,” deciding that such address would be more likely to get the man to keep his temper, “You know the type of woman you had the misfortune to have as a mother. I had a similar father, for they were of one mind. Which is why when you were disowned and your betrothal to your cousin torn up and Andromeda who had the sense to leave before being trapped in a loveless Bonding with the likes of myself and elope with her Ted, our parents conspired me to be forced into Bonding with that woman.”

 

“What the hell does that have to do with anything?” Sirius III growled, not falling prey to the odious man’s attempt at blatant flattery.

 

Lucius continued, “My father and your mother were of one mind like I said, believing our two families must be united. My father was insistent despite my feelings to not only force me to Bond with your cousin but wanted to do away with my Veela nature. Between my father and your cousin they forced me to be Bonded and to take the Dark Mark. I am taking steps to rebuild my life and to have the Mark removed. I have since had my Bonding with your cousin annulled and have been Bonded to the person of my own choosing who is my Mate.”

 

Sirius III turned to Kingsley Shacklebolt, who had as luck would have it been his mentor when he was accepted into Auror Training. “You actually believe this nonsense?”

 

Shacklebolt nodded, “This very morning he undertook a dangerous task, he managed to subdue and deliver into custody He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named,”

 

At which point Narcissa Black proceeded to thrash in her bonds and scream against her gag.

 

Shacklebolt continued on, “the gentleman who had you unjustly sentenced, most likely on Dumbledore’s insistence who as it is, is currently inhabiting a cell himself for assisting in the escape from Azkaban of his own son. Both of whom are now soon to be neighbours for a long time, for both have used Unforgivables. Which we both know is a life sentence in Azkaban. The third prisoner to come in, you have a score to settle with. A man of dubious loyalty, one Peter Pettigrew.”

 

Sirius’ face was flushed with anger, “That good for nothing traitor is here?”

 

“Yes, Severus and I brought the loathsome worm in. Severus would have killed him for the same reasons as yourself Auror Black. I restrained him, Lily would not want him to bloody his hands even for her sake.”

 

“That greasy Snivellus? What right does he have for vengeance?” Sirius III snapped

 

“Lily Potter, formerly Evans as you well know was his best friend growing up. Whether you took your head out of your arse long enough Auror Black to notice they made up after his disastrous lapse in judgment and temper when he fatefully called her that derogatory name regarding her origins. A memory that shames him to this day, he took Harry into his custody when he fell ill and begged me to see that he received proper attention from a real Healer. Since you were on the run, he decided despite Lily’s probable approving of his guardianship, that it would be best for Remus to take charge of him.”

 

“Snivellus got Remus guardianship of Harry? Why?”

 

“Because he felt he had done them both a disservice considering his previous treatment of them. He also pushed for your case to be re-examined. Remus has custody of Harry at present, he is doing his duty as executor of his inheritance and since he is not of the proper standing to hold Harry’s votes he graciously asked Andromeda if she would, as a Daughter of the House of Black she can vote on Harry’s behalf though she cannot inherit as you can.” Lucius said getting a bit of a headache from having to be in the presence of two of his least favourite people, Narcissa and Sirius Black.

 

“So that was why Remus was with Harry. Why the hell was Harry hanging around with your bastard son?” Sirius III knew that if a Bonding was annulled, all progeny sired during the course of that Bonding became bastards.

 

“My son,” Lucius said icily, “is no bastard. He was immediately following my Bonding to my Mate, blood adopted and thus he is the blood heir at present to both the lines of Malfoy through myself and Prince through his papa Severus.”

 

Sirius III’s eyes widened, “You are Bonded to Snivellus? Why? You could have anyone and you choose that greasy git?”

 

Lucius glared, “I love him and when I came into my inheritance as a Veela that was who my Veela choose. As for Remus I trust him with my son, not just because he is a trustworthy man but also because he like me is drawn to Severus as a mate. He would allow no harm to come to Severus’ son without consequence. Which is why he had these two arrested. I suspect he merely turned you over to Auror Tonks so the final preparations could be made for your pardon.”

 

Sirius snarled, “I don’t believe my friend could be attracted to Snivellus.”

 

Lucius shrugged, “Believe what you will. Now I believe you owe Senior Auror Shacklebolt a memory. “

 

Shacklebolt banished the ropes restraining his former colleague, “Now I hope you will keep your temper Black. I would like to one day see you return to our ranks.” He pulled out a vial for the memory and his former apprentice’s own wand, “We already ascertained it wasn’t your wand that blew up the street. When you leave you may take that with you.”

 

Sirius took up his own wand in his thin hand covered in pale, parchment-like skin, muttering the incantation and retrieving the silver thread of memory. “There. So when shall I be receiving an apology?”

 

Shacklebolt sighed, “As soon as Fudge is informed of your capture, questioning, the retrieval of Pettigrew’s Order of Merlin, Third Class and he can make a public announcement that new evidence has come to light proving your innocence.”

 

“I will be insisting on a monetary compensation on his behalf.”

 

Lucius smirked, “My dear Andromeda, I just had a thought. Crouch has Black Blood.”

 

Andromeda nodded, “Yes, what of it?”

 

“With both Crouches in custody for life term sentences, I believe they have no other relations. Do their estates and vaults revert to their nearest relation or to the control of the Lord of the House of Black?”

 

Andromeda thought about it, “I believe it depends on the circumstances. However in this case due to the entails that reverted the majority of Black Holdings to Sirius Black III, I believe we can claim them. In lieu of paying a hefty sum in reparation I believe the Wizengamot would see fit to grant control of the Crouch Assets to his care.”

 

Sirius III smirked, “Oh I’d love that. I’m freed, that bastard the pompous Lord Crouch in Azkaban and I get everything he owns? There is justice I suppose.”

 

“Since all evidence regarding the Death of the Potters is currently under review, I shall release you to the custody of Mistress Tonks. I expect she will ensure when your case finally comes before the Council of Magical Law that you will be present.”

 

Sirius III snorted, “I won’t miss my day in court. After all, I was denied one prior and I deserve to prove my innocence.”

 

Andromeda nodded sharply, “I will ensure he attends.”

 

“Lord Malfoy, would it be possible to see if a memory of the person who informed He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named of the Potters’ hiding place could be removed?”

 

Lucius sighed, “I’ll ask. I’m sure the King of the Chuvash might be agreeable if you would pass along records of substance and reliable evidence regarding provable actions by the Dark Lord and his servants. Not hearsay but actual proof such as the Torturing of the Longbottoms or the Murder of the Potters.”

 

Shacklebolt nodded, “I’m sure in the interest of justice I can copy and pass of such files with the consent of my superiors of course.”

 

“Of course.” Lucius nodded.

 

“How would we give them to King Sirius?” Shacklebolt asked.

 

Andromeda spoke, “I have a way of contacting him. Since he has granted me the ability to visit Black Manor that is.”

 

“Black Manor?” Sirius stammered, “but that’s been lost.”

 

Andromeda sighed, “The King of the Chuvash is our ancestor Phineas Nigellus Black’s elder brother. He was Bonded to a Submissive Chuvash and closed the Manor deciding to live apart from Wizarding society. His title passed to his brother and in due course to you. If of course he deems you worthy of succeeding him. He has reinstated myself and other persons blasted off by your mother. In return he disowned her and my sisters. He dislikes Narcissa already and when he hears that she tried to attack Harry he maybe out for Blood.”

 

“Her blood is mine.” Lucius said silkily, “She attacked my son, I am Veela and I will be enacting the rite of Blood Vengeance. I have no desire for requesting a Blood Feud, I know too many Blacks that whose company I do not despise.”

 

Narcissa shivered against her will it seemed.

 

“Now I believe you Auror Black maybe excused. May I ask where he will be?”

 

Andromeda glanced at her cousin, “As much as I dislike him, it would be cruel and unfeeling of me to put him in the house of his birth, Grimmauld Place. However, I choose to be gracious and will allow him to return to his own home at Baskerville Hall. There I will have him remain under house arrest until he is brought before the Council of Magical Law and all charges against him are summarily dropped for lack of evidence.”

 

“That shall be sufficient.” Shacklebolt nodded, “You are free to go Auror Black. Now Sirius please try to stay out of trouble. No rowdy parties with lots of pretty ladies. Your last girlfriend Miss Charity Burbage was quite upset when I didn’t seem to defend you. She insisted you were innocent and would not, could not betray James. She said you would never be a Death Eater and that it all had to be a misunderstanding. I do hope you contact her, I am sure she would be pleased to hear from you.”

 

Lucius knew that Charity Burbage was still single and was now a Professor of Muggle Studies at Hogwarts.

 

Andromeda led her cousin who could still be considered a disgrace away.

 

Shacklebolt turned to the teenage girl, ungagging her, “Now tell me Miss Parkinson, why in Merlin’s name you would believe that casting the Cruciatus at the Boy Who Lived and your own Housemate Draco Malfoy was the thing to do.”

 

“That whore stole my Draco! He was betrothed to me from the cradle his mother said so. We were to be Bonded when we both came of age, in time I would become Lady Malfoy. I should be Draco’s consort not that disgusting Halfblood whore!” Pansy ranted.

 

“Miss Parkinson, you and Draco have not and never would be betrothed. That choice rested with me, I knew the day he was born that he was Veela. I would not betrothed my child from birth and subject him to the same trauma of being forced to Bond with someone not your mate. I know my son and he would never have wanted you.” Lucius said icily.

 

“Why right have you to lie and say you aren’t Bonded to Lady Narcissa? She’s a wonderful woman.” Pansy snarled.

 

“Narcissa Black and my Bonding was annulled with the consent of the Minister for Magic. I never wanted to be Bonded to her, I hated her, for the simple fact that she made my Mate’s life miserable. He was a Halfblood with the misfortune of being raised Muggle. He was the grandson of Lord Prince and should have been treated as such. Instead he was tortured and bullied both inside his House and without. I should have despite his protests placed him under my protection. He was my Consort though unofficially. I did him a disservice by not making that plain. He wished to not cause me trouble. He was willing to live with me under terms other then Bonding. I should have done the honourable thing as did Andromeda and eloped with him. Instead after she eloped I foolishly attempted to convince my father to allow me choose my own Bondmate. That failed and I was trapped with Narcissa and forced to take the Mark.”

 

“Your traitor! When the Dark Lord returns,”

 

“The Dark Lord will never return. He is done with being the Dark Lord. He is currently in the custody of the one man who has right to judge him. He will face judgement but a few things must happen first. You will not be able to serve him for he shall need no servants. You will because of my charity and your years will be allowed out live out your years in Azkaban. If Lady Longbottom were of a vengeful mind, then she would file for the Rite of Blood Feud against the Lestranges. I think that Lord Prewett should file one against Dolohov for killing his twin.”

 

“You are just as much of a fool as your son!” Pansy snapped.

 

“I think I’ve heard enough. Auror Tonks escort this girl to the cells. If they are crowded, I believe she and Ms. Prewett deserve each other.”

 

Dora tossed her violet hair, “A pity that they aren’t. I hope they enjoy one another’s company regardless.”

 

Shacklebolt turned to Narcissa as his colleague dragged out the Parkinson girl, “Now Miss Black, your actions are heinous. You attempted to cast the Cruciatus Curse, which is illegal, as you no doubt know for your sister was imprisoned for the same crime. Why in Merlin’s name would you try to curse your own child?”

 

“That little bastard is no child of mine. Lucius allowed him to be spoilt by that dirty Halfblood he kept as his lover. He should have allowed me to teach that ungrateful wretch some manners before he became insufferable, like my cousin Sirius who was a disgrace to the family.” Narcissa glared.

 

“Draco was always more Severus’ son then yours, he should have been Severus’ from the beginning. Severus loved him, something you are incapable of. You would have beaten him or used the Cruciatus curse on him as punishment. I could not, would not allow such a thing, which is why I kept you away from him. You never cared one wit for him, even when his cauldron exploded and he was injured. Even then you wanted to Crucio him for it and he was already in pain. That was when I decided you were beyond help, you were mad through and through. I should have gotten annulled from you then but I was too cowardly. I am most grateful that we are no longer Bonded. Your attack on Draco by Wizarding standards requires an immediate life sentence to Azkaban. Being a Veela, I have the right and duty to kill you.” Lucius said moving within spitting distance of her. “I will kill you and it will be legal, it will have no mark on my conscience if I do. However due to the injuries you have done to both of us, it will harm my conscience if I do not. I have not told Severus what you have done to our son, he will want to kill you himself that is not something I will allow. If he bloodies his hands he will be punished. If I do I will walk free as you never shall. I want you to consider that. I will come when you least expect it, for now I want you to suffer and Azkaban is the place for that.”

 

“If you are quite done Lord Malfoy I shall take her to the cells myself. I do hope you are sure that killing her is the right choice. If you truly have kept your hands clean I would hate for you to bloody them on scum like her.”

 

Lucius spun on his heel;  “I’m through with her for now. Now I must break the news to my Bondmate that our son was attacked.” He was still quite angry that Remus had see fit not to tell them. He left Shacklebolt to deal with that loathsome Black woman.

 

 

 

Chapter Text

Chapter 25-

After finishing at Celestine's Boutique, Draco who was no longer in pain decided to retrieve his companions from Quality Quidditch where he sent them. He was quite hungry now that he thought about it despite the late breakfast and sweets at Honeydukes. He sent Blaise inside to fetch Charlie, Vince, Greg, Fred, Adrian and Neville. He'd sent Dreca back to the Manor with Sophronia and Luna's purchases. Angelina had summoned her own elf to take her things back to Gryffindor Tower. They would once more dine at Savoir Faire before proceeding to Andre's for proper dress robes to wear to the Yule Ball. He hoped if Adrian had no date as of yet he would choose to attend with Neville, he sensed something brewing between them even if they didn't.

He requested a private room for his party; Malfoy though unwelcome in some British Wizarding circles was well known and respected on the continent.

With a trademark Malfoy smirk and to the waiter's astonishment he told him to inform the chef they would be wanting the entirety of the menu along with over a dozen extra plate. He poured an appropriate amount of galleons into a small velvet bag. "This should be enough to start a tab." He informed the man in French, requesting the choicest wines to arrive chilled with their complimentary dish; as well as Butterbeer and pitchers of a variety of juices. They would like tea and coffee while they waited for their appetizers.

Blaise laughed, addressing his friend in French, "You must think this is a sort of party to order the entire menu."

Draco winked, "Only the best for my Harry. After all, he hasn't had the opportunity to explore exotic cuisine the way we have."

Both through his mother and stepfamily, the Goyles, Blaise had plenty of experience with French Cuisine.

The tea and coffee arrived quickly; it didn't take much longer for the appetizers to arrive.

Draco pointed out each dish to Harry, "That is 'Crevettes Sauce Boursin'; it's shrimp sautéed with sun-dried tomatoes, corn and leeks in a garlic and herb cream sauce. Then there is 'Champignon Portabella aux Quatre Fromages'; grilled mushroom stuffed with Swiss, brie and parmesan cheeses, over a blue cheese sauce. You tried escargot before but this is 'Escargots Bourguignon' snails in garlic, parsley and butter. This is 'Saumon Fumé'; you see its smoked salmon garnished with field greens, capers and shallots. This last dish is 'Bruschetta de Flageolets'; grilled French bread with mashed flageolet beans, tomatoes, thyme, garlic and balsamic vinegar."

"That doesn't seem like a lot of food…" Harry said after considering everyone here. Except for the snails, which he didn't especially care for, everything looked and smelled yummy.

Draco laughed, "This is just the appetizer course. Then comes of the soup and salad course. Finally we'll have the entrée course. Since this isn't a restaurant we are all familiar with I've ordered everything so we might try it. Then the next time we come we'll know what we like."

Harry thought that was a really cool plan, "Is it expensive?"

Draco poked his cheek, "It's a date, don't worry about cost. Besides, I've barely touched my bag of Galleons yet. I've got loads in my vault." One date wouldn't make his fathers poorer. Besides, if he ended up Bonded to Harry, they'd add the double inheritance of the Potters and Blacks to the Malfoy's dozen vaults and infinite rental properties. He wasn't in it for the money; he was genuinely attracted to the shy, abused Gryffindor. He really wanted to give the slightly younger teen a life he should have had if his parents had raised Harry.

The group all had tasters from the variety of appetizers.

Draco summoned the waiter with bell- like sounding charm, asking for a second serving of the favourites Bruschetta de Flageolets, Saumon Fumé and Crevettes Sauce Boursin. It seemed that only himself and Luna enjoyed the Escargots Bourguignon and Champignon Portabella aux Quatre Fromages. Veela were more fond of escargot and mushrooms apparently then wizards and witches with no creatures inheritances and the Chuvashes.

So when the second serving of Draco's favourites arrived he was surprised when Fred took over a third.

Fred shrugged, "I felt a craving for them."

Angelina and Charlie gave him a disgusted look.

Fred snorted, "Don't look at me like that. You ate pretty rare meat last time Charlie. I thought that was," he wrinkled his nose in distaste, "odd."

Draco wondered against just what Fred's creature inheritance was. He was no Chuvash or Veela that was certain. What other creature inheritance was found in Black, Prewett and Weasley lines?

Remus enjoyed the dishes that weren't snail and mushroom, happily nibbling on the Bruschetta.

A large silver soup tureen was placed on the table with small ceramic bowls stacked.

The bowls were ordered from Japan where they were made by hand so not one was identical to the next. There was an opalescent or was it metallic sheen to them?

Their server dished out French Onion soup covered with a thick layer of Swiss cheese and a large basket of toasted French bread.

A few large salads also joined the soup on the table; and the dishes were passed from hand to hand.

The group held pleasant conversations as they enjoyed their meal.

XoooooX

Gideon was finally feeling well, getting up to read in the library for a few hours. He nearly dropped his book when he realized something was off, missing…his wand? Where was his wand? Had that odious old man destroyed it? He snapped his fingers, summoning his elf in residence.

Arthur looked up at him, wondering what he wanted.

Jocy stood there, wringing his pillowcase, "Yes my Lord?"

"Where is my wand? Did my sister have it buried with me?" Gideon asked.

Jocy's eyes widened, "Why no master. Miss Molly thought it foolish to bury perfectly useful wands with Fabian, yourself and your father. Even stole Bilius and her mother's wands."

"Where is my wand? Why would she break a time honoured tradition?" Gideon was furious that his sister desecrated wands. It was custom to bury a wand with its master with the exception of the family wand that many old families had.

"Master Fabian's wand is with Young Master Bill. Lord Dathan's wand original wand went to Charles. Your wand Master…is in Master Fred's hand. It sort of likes him. The Prewett wand is in Master Percy's hand."

Gideon blinked, "What?" the wand carried by the Head of the Prewett line was in the hand of his third son? "That shouldn't be…when did it chose him?"

"On Master Percy's eleventh birthday…Miss Molly made them choose a wand. When Master Charles was eleven she gave him Master Dathan's original wand. When he became Quidditch Captain, Lord Weasley bought him a wand. Now Master Dathan's wand is broken. Miss Molly interred it with Master Dathan then. Master Fred need good wand, wand not like him much." Jocy said nervously. "Bilius' wand went to Ginevra and Lady Danau's wand to Master George."

"How could you let her do this?" Gideon asked Arthur.

Arthur was dumbfounded, "I didn't know. I assumed she bought them wands."

Gideon was very annoyed. He wanted his wand back. He wanted his life back. "I guess it's time for my first appearance in public. I'm getting my wand back. I suppose that means that our sons at least the twins need new wands."

Arthur was not about to tell his soulmate he couldn't have his wand. "Alright. We'll need warm clothes."

"Jocy get right way."

"You think Fred's in Hogsmeade or at Hogwarts?"

Arthur chuckled, "Probably Hogsmeade, he's usually spending all his money on Zonko's."

Jocy returned quickly with warm cloaks and boots as well as gloves and mufflers. "Here Masters."

"Jocy, do you know where Fred is?" Arthur asked absently.

"Master Fred be in Paris."

"What?" Arthur coughed.

"Master Fred be in Paris with Master Charles."

Gideon could breathe better, "At least he's being looked after."

"Jocy bring you there?"

Arthur laughed, "That would be interesting."

"Saves time searching for them. I want my wand." Gideon said firmly.

Jocy took a forearm in each of his long fingered hands and they disappeared with a pop.

XoooooX

Luna glanced up at Draco mid bite of salad, "Someone's coming to retrieve something that belongs to them."

Draco nearly choked on a snail, "What?"

There was a soft pop.

Charlie spun around wand in hand, before blinking at the newcomers, "Dad? Papa?"

Gideon spotted Fred, "I want something that belongs to me." He held out his hand, "Wand."

Before Fred could react, his wand zoomed out of his pocket and into his bearer's hand. "What?"

"That Knut-pinching wench who purported to be your mother broke tradition not burying wands with their deceased owners. You ended up with my wand. I'm afraid you'll be needing your own." Gideon said with a dramatic sigh.

Charlie took a bit to process this, "Papa is it safe for you to be out of the Hall?"

"Perhaps, perhaps not. What is a wizard without a wand?" Gideon said trying to give off the appearance of being bored rather then annoyed.

No one really had the unfeeling nature to reply to that and give the crude response: a Muggle

Remus was curious, "What is your wand Gideon?"

Gideon grinned, "Alligator Juniper and Unicorn Hair. Unicorn Hair is said to be the strongest wand core for healing. Alligator Juniper is considered one of the best woods for talented healers. I wanted to be a healer since I was young."

Remus nodded, "I believe Unicorn Hair it is also known for reversing the effects of poisons. As well strong for Charms and Transfiguration."

Draco was surprised, "You know wandlore?"

Remus nodded, "I was once quite interested in it as a field of study. Until someone discovered I…never mind."

"What sort of a wand do you possess Remus? I would have thought you'd have made a decent Auror like James and Sirius." Arthur asked.

"Black Laurel and Hippogriff Feather. Hippogriff Feathers result in wands that are strong for Charm work. It can be a very versatile wand, renowned for adaptability. It demands respect from wielders. Black Laurel wands are excellent for Defense Against the Dark Arts, as well as spells of absorption, reversal and destruction of negative spells"

"That would explain your marks." Arthur mused, "I still believe you would have made an excellent Auror even with such a wand, or perhaps because of it."

"What is wandlore?" Harry asked curious.

"In a book written by Garrick Ollivander he put it, 'Wandlore is a complex and mysterious branch of magic.' Rightly so, you see each wand is a little different, just as each and every witch and wizard is unique. Some magic users are very adept at casting magic without the use of a wand, but it has been noted that the results are generally less-than-effective, and that it is a course better left to races other than humans. The length of the wand, the type and flexibility of the wood involved in it's crafting and the core all contribute to the overall power and effectiveness of the wand. It is important to note that just as not two wands are identical, neither can any wand be simply picked up and used with ease by someone that is not its owner. It will be a foreign object, not 'alive' to the touch in the same manner as the wand that 'chooses' the witch or wizard as its partner in magic. It is believed that a truly gifted wandmakers can see a wand within a piece of wood; a wandmaker is an artist as well as a creator. Wandmaking can be a dangerous occupation; one often handles dangerous or temperamental cores."

"You wanted to enter a dangerous field of study?" Draco was interested.

"It fascinated me, I stumbled upon it quite accidentally. A book on wandlore ended up in my books while I was on prefect duty in the library. I had hopes of apprenticing to Ollivander who is reputed to be one of the best, though he's a bit set in his ways about wandcores. If I'd had the money, I'd have also wanted to study under Gregorovich who is also a famed wandmaker. Wands are considered quasi-sentient; they choose their masters to some extent. A good witch or wizard can use any wand but if it isn't a good fit there could be problems.

"Can a wand refuse a master?" Neville asked shyly.

"Yes, like I said a wizard can't just pick up any wand. If it isn't meant to be yours it won't work as well or at all." Remus said gently.

"What is this wand? Gran never told me and it's not easy to use." Neville handed over his wand nervously.

Remus examined it closely, "I believe this is Black Willow." He tested it, "Springy, fourteen inches. Ah! Phoenix Feather. That would prove a temperamental mix. I suspect it needs a firm hand, would I be right in assuming it was your father's? I suspect it would be decent for Transfiguration in the right hands."

"It was my father's." Neville said quietly.

Remus nodded, "Frank was a confident man on the pitch and off. He was an excellent Keeper and a keen duellist. Would have suited this wand. However, it is not suited to you. Far be from me it to be tell a woman like your grandmother how to raise a child but a wand like this could adversely affect your marks as well as learning. You haven't the confidence to wield it yet. Perhaps, when you are older and more confident but not now." Remus turned thoughtful, "I'd recommend something of a more willing wand, one that instills confidence. A wood with ties to Earth magic, you are exceptionally talented in Herbology as well as having a natural gift for Defense. I heard your Transfiguration Marks weren't dreadful. Definitely not an Apple wand, they aren't reliable. They tend to lose duels for their masters because they are easily overwhelmed. Definitely a fruit wood though, so maybe a Cherry or Peach, they would suit you best."

Fred sipped his pumpkin juice, "What about me? Since I'm wandless at the moment." Another reason to dislike his 'mother'…

"You?" Remus burst out laughing, "If anyone deserved a wand with a Billywig stinger core it's you!"

"What!" Fred choked.

"Main ingredient in Fizzing Wizzbees. They are good for Charms. They tend to bond to happy-go-lucky individuals and pranksters. That is if my memory serves me correctly, but they can be temperamental." He muttered, "Far better then Padfoot's wand."

"Padfoot? Wasn't he one of the Marauders?" Fred asked.

"Moony at your service." Remus gave a comical bow.

"What was Padfoot's wand?" Fred was really, really curious.

"Blood Wood and Leprechaun Hair, not the smartest mixture Ollivander came up with. Suited Siri just fine though. Blood Wood wands create the strongest bonds with passionate, fiery people. Wands with Leprechaun Hair cores can bring wielder great luck or cause them a lot of trouble. Users are often considered to be divided between cheerful and good-natured folk, or thoughtless pranksters. That was Siri alright." Remus shook his head.

Harry thought that was a rather honest description of his godfather. "What were my parents?"

"James' wand was Mahogany and Dragon Heartstring. Mahogany is well suited to protection magic like wards and shields, which would benefit an Auror. It is believed to be more likely to bond with someone of considerable energy. Which is probably why James was an excellent Chaser, always in motion. Might also have explained his Patronus being a stag, the combination made it excellent at Transfiguration. While Dragon Heartstring specializes in hexes, lacks subtlety but can be very powerful. They were a good match." Remus said thoughtfully, "As for Lily, her wand was a swishy Willow and Hippogriff Feather. It was a very versatile wand, renowned for adaptability. It demanded respect, excellent for Charms that is why she worked in the Department for Experimental Charms as a researcher. She had some skill at healing magic and divination, probably augmented by her wand. Lily was also an excellent judge of character."

"We're not in Diagon Alley, where would be best to get a wand for Fred?" Arthur asked.

"Ollivander's of course. A cousin of Garrick's Louis has an excellent reputation here in Paris. He claims to be able to match the perfect wand to any witch or wizard. I've never met him though. He is known to make a wand special if he hasn't the proper wand. Louis and Garrick though trained by the same man part ways over cores. Garrick refuses to use anything but unicorn hair, dragon heartstring and phoenix feathers." Remus said with a shrug. "It might be prudent to try here. Not sure how safe Diagon Alley would be at present."

"How far would his establishment be?" Gideon asked.

"I saw it near Quality Quidditch I think." Charlie offered.

"We've got some time." Draco said quickly.

"We'll just pop over with Fred." Arthur said, "Can't have my son at Hogwarts wandless."

Fred grinned, his own wand? Wouldn't George be jealous? "What about George?"

"Is his wand giving him trouble? I know he's using my mother's." Gideon said worried.

"They get alone better then me and yours. Despite being a Beater, he has a gentler personality." Fred shrugged, George would not be please to find out he was using a woman's wand bent wizard or not.

Neville asked nervously, "I'd like to come…" maybe, he'd use his pocket money for a real wand. Maybe he wasn't an almost Squib…could his poor marks because of his wand?

"Since they'll be staying here and I've always wanted to meet Louis Ollivander, I'd like to come." Remus was clearly excited.

Harry had never really seen Remus that intense, not even when he was 'bonding' with Sirius after discovering that Pettigrew was a conniving useless traitor. He was clearly passionate about wandlore…

"Go ahead. You can tell us about the adventure later. Hurry back or we'll eat all the food." Draco teased, "Besides, we still have clothes shopping."

"Shopping?" Gideon asked.

"Oh dear, where are my manners?" Draco said giving off the impression that he was quite displeased with himself, "Lord Gideon Prewett, meet Sophronia Prewett. Previously known as Mafalda or Mal by Fred and George. Sophronia is Queen of Slytherin due to her Black blood from her grandmother. She's been invited to attend the Yule Ball by Gregory Goyle, heir to the House of Goyle. Sophronia, this would be your father's cousin Gideon. I took Sophronia and my cousin 'Thena shopping. They were Third Years who didn't begin the year with dress robes because they were too young to go on their own. We picked out tasteful, striking outfits I'm sure you'll approve"

"Thank you Malfoy, you must allow me to compensate you." Gideon began.

Draco waved his hand dismissively, "Consider is a gift. Our Queen should have clothing that reflects her status as a Daughter of the Houses of Prewett and Black."

"When I have fully recovered I'll be speaking to your father. I have plans to adopt you." Gideon announced holding her hand and bowing over it.

Sophronia blushed, "Thank you sir." She knew enough about the Wizarding World due to her being placed in Slytherin House that her Squib father and Muggle mother would impede her. They weren't really close anyway…

Arthur smiled, "Be nice to have a blood daughter."

"Mal's really smart, conniving too. She's got prank ideas and she's agreed to help us with the shop." Fred grinned, "So has Greg. He's a decent bloke, certainly not a brainless muscle head snake like Derrick and Bole."

Greg choked on his last bite of French bread, bit weird to be complimented by his tutors the Gryffindor Beaters.

Gideon went to sort him out, hovering like the concerned healer he was even though he hadn't finished his training.

Arthur clasped his shoulder gently when his mate was convinced the teen would be fine. "Better go."

The group mostly were in their own little conversations when they left.

XoooooX

An excitable Remus led Arthur Weasley, Gideon Prewett, Fred Weasley, Neville Longbottom and for some inexplicable reason Adrian Pucey, King of Slytherin. He opened the door to Ollivander's wands- Paris branch.

"Welcome! How might I assist you?" a man younger looking then Garrick Ollivander was expected to be met them.

"Louis Ollivander?" Remus asked.

"Yes, who might you be?"

"Just someone keenly interested in wandlore. I once hoped to apprentice…" Remus admitted shamefaced. "I was particularly aware of your reputation on the continent. As well as your different methodology regarding wandcores compared to your cousin."

"Garrick!" the man snorted, "Makes a fine wand, but wands must be a perfect match to both magical ability and personality. Can't get that using only three cores. Just 'cause his dad didn't do business with the right people to get decent core materials is no reason to not use other cores. Takes a special type of wandmaker to work with volatile cores. Got to choose the right wood. Ya didn't come to discuss wandlore as interesting as it is didja?"

Arthur pointed at Fred, "I just got out of a bad relationship. My ex decided to force my sons to use wands of deceased family members rather then allowing them to get their own. It turns out she stole his bearer's wand, made my son use it. Now that Gideon's well, he'll be needing his wand back. Didn't take to one another, Gideon's a born healer and Fred here is a born prankster."

"Prankster? Hmm…" He pulled out a measuring tape, "Wand arm?"

Fred held it out.

"I think he'd do well with fourteen inch wand. Prankster? Not the type for a Leprechaun hair. Too grounded. Hogwarts?"

Fred nodded, "Gryffindor. Sixth Year."

"I taught him for a year. Keen at Defense Against the Dark Arts. Highly imaginative. Creative sort, inventor. Wants to open his own establishment selling pranks and trick items. From what I've read I thought a Billywig stinger core might suit him."

"Inventive sort? Imaginative? I might have just the wand. Wouldn't let it go to just anyone. Temperamental bugger. Bored easily in wrong hands."

Neville was just looking about, hands in his cloak when a wand seemed to call out to him. He reached out as if to touch it but paused as if thinking better of it.

Adrian and Remus were barely able to catch sight of it.

A wand threw itself into Neville's hand.

Neville barely managed to wrap his fingers around it; it felt alive, like it sang in his hand. Giving off red sparks, it seemed to connect with him.

"You, young man. Name?"

"N…Neville Longbottom."

"Frank's son." Arthur supplied.

"I've almost never seen a wand choose a master that way. Age? House?"

"Fourteen...Fourth Year...Gryffindor."

"Would of picked you for a Hufflepuff with a stuttering problem like that. Don't you have a wand?"

"Just…dad's…" Neville admitted.

"What is it?"

"Black Willow and Phoenix Feather. It's springy, fourteen inches and temperamental. Needs a firm hand due to its nature. Served Auror Longbottom well, was excellent at Transformation." Remus interjected for his shy former student.

"For you wandlore is not a hobby." Louis said glancing at Remus, "It's a gift. If you were a Ollivander you would have been trained from a young age." He held out his hand for the wand that clearly chose the Longbottom boy, "Ah yes, 13" Cherry and unicorn hair. Not an especially fine wand. Was experimenting with Gerrick's techniques.'

"Wouldn't that prove a contradictory mix for him? Unicorn hair is strong for Charms and Transfiguration. Associated with the pure of heart, virtue, courage and strength of character. It is symbolic of elegance and charisma. Better for gentle, thoughtful and insightful users, which Neville is. Cherry on the other hand, Easy to use aids rather than hinders casting. Good all-round wandwood, except for Dark magic. While particularly good for Healing and Divination, Neville however excels at Herbology and Defense."

"He may find that subjects that were previously difficult are easier. It is possible he was so talented at Herbology and Defense that his less then useful wand couldn't hinder him. I might not have picked this wand for him, like my uncle always said; 'It's the wand that chooses the wizard'. Although, I've found that a truly talented wandmaker had a feel for both wandmaking and pairing wands to their masters. One of mine, if it isn't broken need never be replaced. I don't make or sell wands with flaws." Louis said airily, "You mentioned this boy's character and considered Billywig. I might have just the wand." He summoned a box and removed the lid, "Wouldn't give this to just anyone like I said. Needs a firm imaginative hand, I'd say it likes learning. It's Sycamore and Billywig, fourteen inches and springy."

Fred reached for it, sensing it hum and it seemed to strike him curious as it regarded him before letting off red sparks.

"The sycamore makes a questing wand, eager for new experience and losing brilliance if engaged in mundane activities. As may be deduced, the sycamore's ideal owner is curious, vital and adventurous, and when paired with such an owner, it demonstrates a capacity to learn and adapt that earns it a rightful place among the world's most highly prized wand wood." Remus said thoughtfully.

"Indeed, we really must discuss wandmaking and lore. You have a talent, choosing a wand core for an individual is a gift." Louis said, clearly struck by Remus' intuition.

"Professor Lupin recommended a fruit wand wood, he mentioned peach or cherry as being more appropriate for Neville. He may just need confidence which his wand will give him as well as a useful wand." Arthur said pleasantly

"How much?" Neville asked.

"For you? Since it was a prototype I never expected to sell, I'll give it to you for one Galleon and seven Sickles. Young mister Weasley's wand is more expensive. Sycamore is a rare wood wand, new and harder to obtain. Billywig stingers are harder for wandmakers to acquire due to the near monopoly that sweet making companies such as Honeydukes have due the popularity of Fizzing Wizzbees. I'll let you have it for fourteen Galleons."

Arthur was a bit speechless, glancing at Remus.

Remus shrugged, "Being that both wood and core are rare I would have expected a higher price. Fourteen Galleons is a deal, I was expecting over twenty." Especially considering the cost of importing, paying off sometimes unscrupulous individuals who were locators of rare potion and wand core ingredients. Sometimes wood was difficult to import as well.

"I keep costs down myself by obtaining the wood and cores myself. That's what Garrick and I have in common. Rather then blame the cores for their inadequacy I discovered that hiring someone was a waste of money. Not all obtainers of magical items understand the fine art wandmaking is. What might be an acceptable quality for potion making would be an utter disaster to attempt to make a wand with."

Remus nodded, "Makes sense."

Neville was one sickle short and certainly didn't have enough. He really wanted the wand though.

Adrian dropped a sickle in his hand, "There."

Neville stammered, "You can't...shouldn't…"

"I'm the King of Slytherin. One Sickle is to me like glittery-black beetle eyes. Got too many. You need a wand; I don't have a use for one Sickle. Just buy the wand lion cub."

Neville nervously paid.

After being paid for the wands, Louis Ollivander asked, "Wand?" glancing at Remus.

"Black Laurel and Hippogriff Feather, one of your uncle's early creations I believe. I acquired it when I was accepted to Hogwarts, back in 1971. Your cousin didn't want me to have it; he didn't trust it because it wasn't a recent creation. He trusted wands of his own making more. Hippogriff Feathers result in wands that are strong for Charm work. It can be a very versatile wand, renowned for adaptability. It demands respect from wielders. Black Laurel wands are excellent for Defense Against the Dark Arts, as well as spells of absorption, reversal and destruction of negative spells. Wasn't the only odd wand in our year; had a Leprechaun Hair and two hippogriff feathers wands."

"Both are notoriously hard to work with. I'm the only wandmaker who trusts Leprechaun and Veela hair wand cores to my knowledge. Have to be careful. I only sell Veela hair to Veelas preferably Veela witches. I made one for Mademoiselle Delacour, Rosewood and Veela hair. She was just the right sort for a Veela hair core; her grandmother donated a hair. Veela and Leprechaun hair must be freely given or the wands can be dangerous. Rosewood works well with Veela hair and Leprechaun hair since it tempers their more volatile aspects."

"We should hurry back, I'm hungry." Fred announced.

"Yes," Remus said absently, his new 'interest' in Potion-making forgotten. "Write to me. I'll be at Hogwarts. I'm retaking my post as Professor of Defense Against the Dark Arts. Not really my field but I know enough to teach."

"Wasting your talent, I'll say. Don't know what someone like you is doing teaching. Garrick should have snapped you up. You'd be miserable though with only three core choices. You've got talent. Do more research. I'll send you copies of my notes. I can't wait to see the wands you'll come up with."

"We've got Hippogriffs, Thestrals, unicorns and centaurs at Hogwarts." Remus mused.

"And the Whomping Willow. The magic in that tree…always wanted to experiment with it. Dumbledore wouldn't allow it."

"I wonder what happened to the pieces that were broken off when Ron crashed my car into it. Perhaps, there is some residual magic in them." Arthur offered.

"I'll see if Severus or Pomona will tell me about that." A wand made from a branch of the Whomping Willow would be very powerful indeed. It would need a strong hand, considering that the tree was sentient and violent, nearly taking a schoolmate's eye out. Besides Snivellius-baiting and Quidditch, Padfoot enjoyed Willow dodging.

"Severus Snape? I remember him. Ask him sometime what his wand is. You'll be surprised. Garrick used to brag about his Phoenix and Yew creation He Who Must Not Be Named used. He was ill and I was watching the Diagon Alley shop when Professor Slughorn escorted him in. The wand Snape left with was infinitely more powerful…"

 

 

Chapter Text

Chapter 26- George wakes, Lucius tells Severus about the attack and Viktor take George Wand shipping

 

 

George woke late; it had to be late afternoon…

 

The bedchamber was large and warm, not that he’d noticed it much the previous night. He flushed, thinking about his night of wild, passionate and utterly abandoned sexual pleasure with Viktor.

 

Good afternoon, dragule. I thought you’d awaken earlier. Perhaps, our physical union was too much for you.” Viktor hissed in Parseltongue, from his place near the fire where he’d been reading.

 

George blushed, chewing his lip as he responded stammeringly in a soft hiss, “It was…nice…” he had nothing to compare it to...

 

Unlike Fred whose sexual prowess and experience bordered on legendary by comparison.

 

Viktor laughed heartily, “With the way you were begging and yelling for me to give it to you harder, I’d say it was more than nice.” After all, they’d woken twice before dawn for a few more rounds. He himself had woken earlier and taken a late breakfast. His father no doubt remembered his first brushes with pleasure when he was a recently mated Chuvash, hadn't attempted to contact them at all...

 

George was tempted to bury his red face in the pillows; he’d never slept in a more comfortable bed. The bed at Hogwarts were only slightly more comfortable then his cot at the Burrow. He realized that he’d brought nothing with him aside from his uniform, which had all but been ripped off him last night.

 

"I had my personal elf adjust an outfit of mine for you. You slept through breakfast as I did. You also missed lunch. It’s about teatime in Britain dragule. You must be famished.

 

To George’s embarrassment, his stomach chose to growl loudly.

 

Viktor sighed, "If only I could transform like Otec I would fly into the forest and bring a sheep for you to feast on.

 

A part of George wanted to purr almost at the thought, his mate wished to provide for him is such a way?

 

However since I cannot, I can ask for an elf to bring you a light meal to hold you over until dinner. We eat quite late.” Viktor tilted his head, “I remember, your brother Bill firecalled earlier. He wished to pass on a message. Apparently the memorial is to be tomorrow afternoon?” his mouth was set in a grim line, “Memorial?”

 

Percy said quietly, “For Percy’s baby. He lost a child when he was my age. Yet it was murdered you see. He was mentally assaulted, forced to forget both child and lover. He recently was freed from an Imperious Curse, he and Oliver who used to be Gryffindor’s team captain and Keeper was his lover. I don’t know if they’ve been intimate yet, not that I really want to know. I feel so sorry for them. I would hate to have that happen to me.”

 

Viktor growled, his soon-to-be brother had a child murdered? How was this allowed? What sort of a man allowed a child of theirs to be killed? "His fiancé let this happen?”

 

George shook his head, “He would never! They didn’t know. Wizard pregnancies are often unplanned. Percy’s always been a bit sickly, so he could have ignored a bit of nausea you see. Plus, we’d suffered a dreadful shock just a few days prior. Ginny, the girl we believe to be our sister had fallen under the control of a Dark Artefact. It caused her to do dreadful things. It’s all been hushed up you know, but Percy being a prefect was called into the Headmaster’s office. He was questioned about how we were taking the news, how Ginny was after her brush with danger, that sort of thing. He’d been given tea with Truth serum in it. He told the Headmaster about Oliver, that they were in love and moving in together. Planning a future. He was imperioed, told to forget all about Oliver, instructed to hate Quidditch and everyone who played it. The pregnancy was discovered. An imperioed person can’t consent to an abortion and Percy never would, the child was conceived in love and he couldn’t fight. He has to bear the burden of knowing he didn’t fight for his child or his lover. Oliver was told that Percy had accused him of forcing him to do sexual acts and begged the Headmaster to help. He’d been instructed to stay away from Percy. Percy turned into a rotten person after that. He yelled at everyone, he’s like me…a Keeper in bed you see, but he was told under the Imperious to Court this terrible girl.”

 

Viktor calmed down some, he growled, “You’re not finishing your education there if that horrible man is still there. Please tell me he’s been fired.”

 

George swallowed, “I expect my grandfather will see to it that he’s removed. It’s Dumbledore…he did it.” He was happy that Viktor wanted to protect him but could he truly leave Hogwarts and his friends? He’d miss everyone dreadfully. “How would I graduate?”

 

I’d catch you up with the students at Durmstrang. Shouldn’t be too difficult. I won’t have you spending nights in the castle, not if he’s about. You’ll sleep on the ship with me. Karkaroff wouldn’t dare refuse me. Otec is too powerful.”

 

Powerful? How?”

 

Ours is an ancient line, Chuvash who only bond to other Chuvash. The Krum name is known for its ability to retrieve hard to acquire Potions ingredients. We also known to fetch commissions from Gregorovich for wand cores. We have a contract with our cousin Dragomir for first dibs on Dragon hide, blood and heartstrings.”

 

You’re a procurer? Merlin! I’m a lucky wizard. That will make obtaining ingredients for my potions and inventions easier.” George grew quite animated now.

 

Viktor summoned his elf asking for tea and light sandwiches for George and a beer for himself. “Tell me about your inventions.”

 

George began to relate the entire list of completed Wizard Wheezes and works in progress including their potion to swim in the Black Lake to play tag and hide and seek with the giant squid.

 

Viktor was intrigued; his father would enjoy his new son all the more. His mother however, would no doubt lament that he’d chosen someone unsuitable. There was nothing his father liked more then a wizard with a head on his shoulders.

 

George slipped away to dress and bathe leaving his wand in the middle of the floor where it’d fallen last night.

 

Viktor picked it up, discovering it was old. It didn’t seem to flicker with the same vibration as his mate’s magic. Why did George carry a wand not his own? His grandfather seemed rich enough to buy a proper wand…

 

George came back, dressed in Viktor’s clothes and shy. “That’s my wand.”

 

It can’t be. For it doesn’t feel like you.”

 

George’s eyes brows furrowed, “What do you mean?”

 

Viktor tossed him his, “Hornbeam and Dragon heartstring. A temperamental mix, suited only to a strong willed wizard. It required a lot of practice to get my wand to adjust to me, though it liked me well enough.”

 

George caught it; the magic it hummed with what was undoubtedly that of his mate. He shifted nervously, “Well… on our eleventh birthday Mum…I mean Molly pulled out these dusty old wands and told us to pick one. This was the only that would even work for me. I was jealous when they bought Charlie a wand when he became Quidditch captain. Ron got Charlie’s old one when he turned eleven, but it broke. Ickly Ronnikins that rotten brat got a new wand that next summer.”

 

Viktor gaped, “You’ve never had a wand of your own? That’s ridiculous! I’ve never heard something that heinous. We’ll fix that. We’ve got to pick up a suit for a funeral anyway. We’ll head to Gregorovich after you eat. My mate deserves a wand made for him. I don’t care how expensive it is, you’ll have a proper wand.”

 

Mine works,”

 

It may, but it doesn’t suit you. Your wand work will be far superior when you have a wand that suits you. It’s like a bonding, it only works if both are suited to one another.”

 

George was in awe; Viktor was going to buy him a wand? His family were rare ingredient procurers? How did he get so lucky?

 

XoooooX

 

Lucius arrived at the Manor, in jangled spirits to encounter to his slight annoyance a pacing, clearly distraught Severus.

 

“What is going on? I woke to find you gone! You didn’t even wake me to say goodbye! The elves won’t even look at me. They answer no questions but that you were summoned the Ministry. They seemed upset.” Severus was worried, frustrated and he missed Lucius. They’d only been Bonded for a short time, he liked to know where his Bondmate was. Being away from both Remus and Lucius made him anxious.

 

“Severé sit. You’ll wear out the rug.” Lucius said, he was emotionally drained, he still hadn’t recovered from the double shock of finding out that his ex had attacked their son only to be saved by that odious Sirius Black. He hated the man for what he’d put Severus through. If he were honest with himself, he hated himself for not being man enough to stand up to his father or to protect his mate from their schoolmate.

 

Severus stumbled back into the settee; it had been a long time since Lucius used that pet name for him. “What did you call me?”

 

Lucius sat next to Severus, “Remus took the boys and their friends to Hogsmeade. Charlie went with them as a second chaperone.”

 

Severus was getting impatient, “Tell me what happened!”

 

Lucius took his hand squeezing it, “I was summoned to the Ministry by Dora. Remus called for her. Draco and Harry were attacked…”

 

Severus stiffened, Draco…hurt? And Harry? Why hadn’t he been told? “Who did it? Where are they? St. Mungos? Here? No, if they were here I’d know it…”

 

“It was the woman and Parkinson’s daughter.”

 

“Nar…that miserable wench! I’ll kill her. I’ll kill them both!” Severus said, his heart in his throat.

 

“You’ll do no such thing. Harry is fine. Remus had them seen by Smythe and Ted. Black was in Hogsmeade, he’d come to check on Harry. He tried to stop the attack but ended up barrelling the two insufferable witches over. Remus used the Incarcerous on the three of them and turned them over to Dora. Shacklebolt questioned them; Auror Black was released into Andromeda’s custody and placed on House Arrest. He’ll be called before the Council on Magical Law at some point. The woman and Parkinson’s girl are going to stew in Azkaban. I’ll take care of the woman, she harmed my child,”

 

“Our child.” Severus said fiercely.

 

“Yes Severé ours. Being Veela it is my right and duty to punish her for using the Cruciatus on Draco.”

 

Severus was faint, “The Cruci…where is he? I have to know he’s alright.”

 

“He’s with Remus. If he was badly injured, he would have brought him home.” Lucius tried to calm him.

 

“What about Harry?”

 

“He’s fine.” Lucius said hugging him, “Draco could never let him be harmed.”

 

Severus closed his eyes; “You mean he took the Cruciatus for Harry…”

 

“He’ll be fine, Severé. I’m sure of it.” He began singing in French softly; it always soothed Severus when he did. He’d grown up listening to French tunes on the Wizarding Wireless as a youth and had enjoyed teasing his mate in French after learning Severus had an aptitude for languages. The studious young wizard was a relatively ignored genius,  though he was skilled at multiple subjects and had been a member of the infamous Slug Club with him: at Hogwarts he’d taken Arithmancy, Numerology and Ancient Runes as electives. Care of Magical Creatures would have put him with the Marauders more. They’d also taken Divination but Severus had never been inclined to look too far into the future. Lily Evans had taken Twelve OWLS and so had Remus but both soon narrowed their focus taking fewer classes during their NEWT years.

 

Severus wanted to hold his son and see for himself the boy was okay. Narcissa Black may have given birth to Draco but she was no mother. He loved that boy from the day he was born; he’d look so much like his Lucius that it had been impossible not to love him. He’d ached for the child he’d lost but he’d never wish Draco away…

 

They sat there comforting one another.

 

Lucius had hated to tell Severus what had happened but he couldn’t bear to mar their fragile new happiness now that they were Bonded with secrets…

 

XoooooX

 

Viktor chose to Apparate them to the supposedly ruined and lost castle of Hammaburg in Hamburg, Germany.

 

“Where are we?” George asked in soft Parseltongue a bit awed, this place felt older and more Magically grounded than Hogwarts.

 

“Hamburg.”

 

“Germany?”

 

“Precisely, Hamburg is located on the southern point of the Jutland Peninsula and the center of the German Wizarding culture. It lies directly between Continental Europe to its south and Scandinavia to its north. The North Sea is west and the Baltic Sea is east of Hamburg. Hamburg is located on the River Elbe at its confluence with the Alster and Bille. It really is too bad, that Mr. Gregorovitch, the one who sold me my wand retired see. Mine was the last he sold.”

 

They made their way towards the wand shop.

 

It was a small colourfully painted shop that bore the name, Gregorovitch Zauberstäbe.

 

“It’s farther from my home but a more pleasant visit. This is the primary entrance to his shop. Being formerly instructed at Durmstrang, he learned magic I don’t believe is taught at Hogwarts. One being a spell that is cast on two doors, it calls the two-points spell for it brings two distant points together. He has what seems to be shops in Russia, Croatia and Bulgaria but those shops lead here. One opens the door in the shop in Samobor Castle on hill Tepec in Samobar, Croatia or Vladimir, Russia. He is said to have retired to Gagra, which used to be a famous Muggle resort but terrible things happened there. It is now a retirement community for Russian Wizarding folk.” Viktor said quietly.

 

They opened the door of Gregorovitch Zauberstäbe.

 

There was no slight discomfort as if they’d been simultaneously transported as they walked through the door. Therefore the nature of the supposed four shops hadn’t been changed since he was last here in the summer of 1986 following his eleventh birthday.

 

A voice called out in German and Russian, “Coming!”

 

A younger man came in, a bit dirty, a smell of singed hair around him. The man couldn’t be less then forty or fifty, “Mr. Krum? What a pleasure. How might I serve you? Our families have always been on excellent terms. Tell your father that heartstring he sent works perfectly.” The man looked concerned, “Is anything wrong with your wand?”

 

Viktor shook his head, “My wand is excellent. It’s my fiancé I’m here for. He was sent with a wand not his own to school. I’d like this handled quietly.” He said quietly, “George Weasley, Eugen Gregorovitch.” Making polite introductions in German and Parseltongue.

 

George bowed slightly; he’d never learned another tongue to his embarrassment. His mate clearly spoke English, Parseltongue, German, Russian and Croatian at least. How did he manage to keep them all straight?

 

“Nice to meet you. Let me see it.” The man replied.

 

Viktor turned to George speaking in Parseltongue “Herr Gregorovitch would like to see your wand. He is the son of the man who sold me mine. Inherited the shop as his son will from him.”

 

George shyly removed his wand, “Alright.”

 

Gregorovitch took the wand and examined it before replying in German, “Unicorn Hair I believe. The wood is Peach? Never used that myself, though its especially strong for Transfiguration, Herbology and Alchemy. It’s more of an Asian wood wand. This is a witch’s wand, what is it doing in the hand of a wizard?”

 

Viktor stiffened, “The woman who raised him gave him a previously bonded wand. It doesn’t suit him as you can imagine.”

 

“Indeed, it would be a pleasure to serve the fiancé of Mr. Viktor Krum. I only wish my father were here to serve you. You were his last wand. He said you’d go far with it. Are the stories true? You use it in the Triwizard Tournament?”

 

“Yes, it serves me well.” Viktor said a bit pleased with it.

 

The tall imposing wizard of Eastern European descent handed George wand after wand until one began to sing in George’s hand.

 

The Gryffindor stopped to stare at it, “That’s different…”

 

“Sings with your magic I’ll say.  Let me see it.” The wand was plucked from the young wizard’s grasp, “Hm, Bowtruckle Skin? That was a lucky find that day when examining my wand cores options, I remember. Yes, yes, made from Fir. It’s 15 inches and quite sturdy. It would be powerful for Transfiguration, Herbology, and Care of Magical Creatures. Sometimes this combination is seen in wands specialising in Herbology and Care of Magical Creatures- particularly for those in your father’s profession Mr. Krum. It would also strong for Healing Magic and Potions, though it is believed to have some associations with Divination. I never believed in the Divination bit. That’s a Romany thing; they tend to be more skilled with Divination, used to make money fleecing Muggles until the Eastern European Ministries forbid it.”

 

Viktor paid the man for the wand; it looked well made but didn’t seem to be quite the same thing as one of Isaak Gregorovitch’s. Then they went on their way to find a fashionable shop for a proper suit for a funeral. He would allow for no protests, his future Bondmate would have only the best.

 

 

 

Chapter Text

Chapter 27– Dress robe shopping Andre's

There was still some food left when Arthur and Gideon returned with Remus, Fred, Adrian and Neville.

Draco noticed that Neville's 'hero worship' of Adrian had managed to increase. That was interesting. Instead he laughed, "We were about to leave without you."

"We wouldn't have." Harry protested.

"Of course we wouldn't. I was just teasing." Draco reassured him.

"So you were going shopping for dress robes for the Yule Ball?" Gideon said joining them and requesting coffee for himself and Arthur. They had already ate…

"Yes, it would be unseemingly for George and Fred to have dress robes that were unsuitable for them at an event such as the Yule Ball. Especially, since they are the sons of the firstborn of Lord Weasley and Lord Prewett."

Gideon felt an ache for his twin, he'd never wanted or expected in the darkest days of the war that his amiable, protective twin older by at least an hour would die leaving him title, vault and seat. "It would be disgraceful for me to allow that. Especially since he is escorting a young lady such as Ms. Johnson."

Angelina blushed, "I agreed to come because Fred wanted me to help him choose dress robes that would do well with my own. Not that I would let him see them…"

Fred smirked, "I have honoured that request."

Angelina pinched him, "Behave Frederick!"

"Ooh! She told you!" Harry giggled.

Fred took her hand and kissed it, "I have been behaving. I haven't attempted anything unseemingly such as whisking you off to one of those hotel d'amour." Not that he hadn't considered what fun it might be to whisk her off to one of those famous hotel d'amour that were in the Rue de Leon. Besides, he very much doubted that Draco would turn a blind eye to such a use of his investment.

Angelina smacked the back on his head, "I wouldn't go." Her face crimson with embarrassment at the implication...

Charlie snorted, "Like I would let you sneak off to a place like that." He glared at him, "Dad would kill me if I did."

Blaise choked on his wine, hotel d'amour? Charlie? Sweet Merlin and Devious Morganna! He almost couldn't breathe…

Draco looked at his oldest friend; Blaise had it bad for the older Chuvash. Despite Charlie's acquiesce in paying for the chocolate treat at Honeydukes' the Dragon Tamer didn't seem to be paying much attention to Blaise at present. Blaise had a flirtatious personality that he had been exposed to for the first time when he and Harry returned from London to Hogwarts. Not that he'd been surprised that Blaise was bent but he had been shocked to find that Blaise didn't have a crush on him. He was good looking but he could understand not being his friend's 'type'.

Presently the last of their meal had be partaken of, Draco settled the bill and his group with the addition of Lord Prewett and former Auror Arthur Weasley set off for Andre's.

Andre's was a more masculine version of Celestine's Boutique; it had a smell of whiskey and tobacco. There was an almost gentleman's club feel to the store, young ladies such as Luna, Sophronia, Angelina and Tracey were out of place.

There was a grouping of leather armchairs near a brick hearth, nearby was a sort of bar. It was a well-respected establishment. While Madam Malkin's was alright for uniforms, a place like Andre's for the well-dressed wizard. Draco let them to the more appropriate clothing choices for events such as the Yule Ball.

Draco expected that most would know how to dress: Blaise, Vince, Greg and no doubt Adrian had already purchased their Yule Ball attire. Neville may have been sent with something as well. He nudged Remus, "Why don't we see if we can find something for Harry? Charlie? Entertain Blaise. Adrian is welcome to do as he pleases of course. Neville, keep him company will you? I'm sure Sophronia, Thena and Tracy can keep Theo, Greg and Vince out of trouble. Between Miss Johnson and his fathers I'm sure Fred can be found something suitable. Being that George is of similar measurements for now something might be appropriate. Viktor will no doubt be wearing the Durmstrang dress robes. I am sure between Miss Johnson and one of the attendants you'll find something suitable." A dress robe for George was not quite as difficult to find a wand without him present.

"What do the Durmstrang dress robes look like Malfoy?"

Draco drew a picture in the air, his father had at one time wanted him to attend Durmstrang not because of the less strict view of the Dark Arts but because they had a more rounded education. Their curriculum was less curtailed then Hogwarts, which only taught, so called White Magic. Durmstrang taught a lot of Neutral and Grey Magic along with some Dark Magic that didn't necessarily make it Dark Arts. Papa had put his foot down and said that he could teach him better. Perhaps, perhaps not, he had learned more under Severus Snape then any other professor he'd ever studied under except perhaps, Remus who came close.

Angelina went off muttering something about green and silver, though Slytherin colours would look quite wonderful with the red dress robes and trousers with the fur trimmed half cape.

Draco chuckled, "You mentioned green Harry, as well as that would look I think something more silver would be appropriate what do you think Remus?"

"Fashion is not something I have a good eye for, when Lily was alive she chose clothes for us Marauders. Though Padfoot had a decent sense of style that bordered on the rakish. He had the lost puppy 'I need someone to love and care for me' as well as the dangerous brand of passion some girls find exciting in their first flush of youth." Remus said thoughtfully, "That is what Lily said…"

Draco could hardly resist a bit of sneer, "I don't see what anyone could see in a man like that."

"You saw a different picture of him in the Daily Prophet, I'm sure I can stir up a picture of the Marauders when we were in school or perhaps, a picture of the Order."

"The Order?" Harry asked, having never heard of it.

"The Order of the Phoenix, Dumbledore's little private Army whose sole purposes were to battle the threat of He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named and to follow his every Order."

Draco dug through the neatly folded dress shirt, ties, trousers, vests, suit coats and the like as well as actual robes and capes. He finally settled after much muttering on a pair of smart black woollen trousers, a green bow tie to match Harry's eyes, a silver dress shirt with a vest that matched his trousers as well as a cape that would most definitely have to be shortened. The cape was black with green and silver leaves. It would compliment his own outfit with more green then silver. He had a silver tie like Harry's green one, his shirt was a deeper rich green rather then silver and his cape was a deep grey with silver and ebony dragons.

Draco spotted a set of black robes with red and gold phoenixes, smirking he shoved them into Remus' arms. "Do try that on." Gesturing for the man assisting them, "a black linen suit with a crisp white silk shirt and a red tie if you please for Mr. Lupin."

Remus began to protest. "Draco,"

Draco out of carefully mastered restraint managed to avoid rolling his eyes, "Oh please Remus you must have something suitable to wear if you are going to attend the Ball. Surely you don't think that my fathers would allow you to skip after going to so much trouble to get you your position back as a Professor. Now go try that on. I'll be requiring you to try on a set for Severus. For being as close to my dad as he has been, the man hasn't a set of decent robes."

Remus gave up protesting and did as he was told.

After their assistant handed the suit into the dressing room for Remus, Harry gestured for him to come over. "You measured him?"

The man nodded, "Of course. Should I open an account for him?"

Draco nodded, "Yes, he'll be shopping here from now on. I'll see to it that he gives you his vault number so you can charge it."

"I want a nice, warm winter cloak for him. His coat is so old and worn. It's a wonder he doesn't get sick." Harry said quietly.

"Well, I suppose warming and repairing charms can only work for so long. He'll need something more appropriate if he's going to be a part of my family. He can't wear something like that if he'll be on Hogwarts Weekend duties."

Their assistant brought a variety of winter cloaks and coats.

Harry chose one, a grey one that resembled a sort of coat worn by sailors that he'd briefly seen on the telly while cleaning. A pea coat? It was lined with a type of fur he didn't recognize. Harry turned to Draco, "That one."

"Adjust it to Mr. Lupin's measurements. Add it to Potter's bill but send it to Professor Remus Lupin, Hogwarts along with the gentleman's other purchases." Draco said airily but low as Remus was emerging from the changing room.

"This is a bit ex,"

"Oh do be quiet Remus." Draco said waving his hand dismissively. "It will do just fine. You can cover it with your vault from Black returned to you. You'll be depositing your Hogwarts income into that vault anyway."

Draco spotted the perfect robes for Severus, "Try those on. You're close enough to papa's size. We'll just have them put on automatic resizing charms on for him."

For Severus were there was a set of black robes with green and silver serpents, Lucius had plenty of suits.

XoooooX

Blaise had every intention of Charlie being his date to Yule Ball, not that he had any idea how to get that through the Dominant Chuvash's head. His own dress robes included a green cloak with silver vines over a charcoal grey Italian three-piece suit, a green shirt and silver tie. A striking outfit his step aunt Lady Goyle picked out for him. He leaned over to Charlie, "Being the son of Lord Prewett, you must have at least one set of decent dress robes."

Charlie shook his head. "I don't."

"Well we'll have to remedy that." Blaise said dragging him into the formal attire section. Holding suit coats, vests, shirts, ties and the like to Charlie, "Blue would do well with those eyes. It wouldn't clash with your hair; a colour with too much red in it would look disastrous. However, blues and silvers would be all right." He spotted a navy blue cape with a large silver dragon on it. "Perfect!" he grinned, that would look nice with his own attire for the evening. "Now should the suit be grey or blue?" Blue! With that choice, he matched the cloak to the suit, picking out a silver shirt and a blue tie. Giving Charlie his most adorable begging face, "Please? Try these on? You'll be amazed how good they'll suit you. A man with your status needs a perfect outfit." Charlie was going to be his date he had too. There was no one else he wanted…

Charlie couldn't say no, this teen was way too persuasive. He couldn't even deny him chocolate much less to try on a set of dress robes.

Blaise gripped the edge of a table covered in neatly pressed and folded dress shirts when Charlie emerged. The Dominant Chuvash was bloody gorgeous. He almost couldn't breathe. He had to get the man to agree to be his date…surely it didn't say he couldn't invite a non-student. If he had to he'd beg Lady Goyle for permission. She was like a mother to him. He just hoped the Goyles and his mother approved of Charlie…

How could they not? On a Wizarding stand point; Charlie was the second born son of Lord Prewett, an Ancient and powerful Family previously thought to be extinct in the male line. Which made him a good catch. On a Chuvash social view, Charlie worked for Dragomir who ran the Dragon Preserve in Romania and he was a descendant/relation of the King of the Chuvash.

Charlie was forced to agree that the dress robes Blaise picked suited him. If the kid were Chuvash, he'd make someone an excellent mate someday. Too bad he didn't have something to wear them to, well besides, his brothers upcoming Bondings. He asked Blaise quietly what one wore the funeral of a child, a nephew. He'd been raised out of the circle that his birth had ensured, it rankled that Molly had left himself and his four brothers so ill prepared. There were gentlemen of varying ranks and social status, he was alarmed at his own foolishness for not wondering if as grandchildren of a Lord and the apparent sons of the daughter of another being raised in a 'barmy barn' as some of the priggish Slytherins once called their home. Well that was what Fred and George said after they'd returned Hogwarts following their trip to Egypt after wining the Daily Prophet's Galleon drawing.

Blaise hadn't heard about a death in Charlie's family and wondered which brother lost a child. No one had saw fit to tell him, he was a bit annoyed. Surely Draco knew, trust that boy to keep all the juicy information to himself. Stingy that what his best friend was, stingy! He picked out a proper suit, instructing the young man assisting to be sure it was properly fitted and sent to, he turned to Charlie, "Do you want it sent to you direct? Or to your Grandfather's residence?"

Charlie mulled over it, "To me. I'm staying in the encampment in the Forbidden Forest but we keep a post box in Hogsmeade. You can address it there, care of Harvey Ridgebit's Dragon Preserve. I'll check it regular. When might I expect it?"

"When you need the lot sir?" the young man asked.

"I need the suit no later then eleven London time. I have to wear it to an event." Preferring not to state it was to the memorial of his nephew who'd been murdered.

"We'll see to it that it's ready. We have ways of quick delivery and the others sir?"

"No later then the 23 of December." Blaise said imperiously, he'd find some way to get Charlie to agree to accompany him. He wasn't going with anyone else, how could any man compare to this dominant?

 

XoooooX

 

Angelina's dress for the Yule Ball was an elegantly cut shimmering violet silk and velvet frothy item that clung to her every curve and showed off her rarely seen cleavage. Being a Quidditch player and no boyfriend she didn't have much cause to dress up. Her mother had been thrilled that she'd needed dress robes.

She'd hoped Fred would ask her, and was only too pleased when he did. Before that he told her about the impromptu Quidditch match against players and Viktor Krum. It'd been fun to play Quidditch again, although it was nice to not have to beg the Head Boy and Head Girl to arrange her prefect duties to accommodate her Quidditch Practices and matches. Lee was upset when she politely refused his invitation, she knew he had a crush on her but she didn't return it. She'd politely asked him to invite Alicia who was most distraught about George being bent and attending with Viktor Krum of all people. Her friend was dating a professional Quidditch player?

She'd learned to her dismay when she became a Prefect under the Head ship of Penelope and Percy that Percy was more awful then she'd thought. He yelled at her when she asked to have her prefect duties scheduled around her Quidditch responsibilities. It had been odd, she would have sworn that Percy was nicer then that. It wasn't common knowledge but she'd known that they, Percy and Oliver had been going out. Fred confided in her recently that Percy hadn't been at fault for his actions last year and that he'd never meant to hurt Oliver. Everyone who flew with Oliver was protective of him. Percy'd been imperioed of all things so he had a personality replacement practically. No wonder Oliver had been so Quidditch focused, poor dear she should never have been so hard on him. Here and she'd thought Percy had played around with Oliver's heart before dumping him for Penelope. For Oliver's sake she was glad that wasn't the case, poor Percy to have his child murdered the second he heard about it. She could imagine his feelings, if she'd been pregnant and hadn't known it only to be attacked like that she'd be devastated. It would break her heart to loose Fred's child.

Shaking the depressing thought from her head, she dug through the finery. Finally choosing a grey dress cloak for George with hints of silver and green which she paired with a grey suit, a green bowtie and silver shirt. For Fred was a cape of midnight blue with violet and lavender flowers, a blue suit, purple shirt and silver tie.

Fred glanced at George's outfit that Angelina picked out, "He's a bit slimmer then me and his hips are wider, not that anyone notices. I noticed it after he resized his clothes. Mu…Molly tried to get our uniforms in the same size until Madam Malkin told her that it wouldn't work."

Gideon was surprised, "Those are really stylish. Perhaps I should hire you to buy my wardrobe. I've lost a lot of weight since I was last shopping." Not wishing to rehash his lonely years in captivity in his own home that he' once hoped to live at with Arthur. It had been customary for the Prewetts to live together if they got along. It had always been his and Fabian's desire to live at the Eerie together. He hoped at least one son would consent to do so. At least that way he might see them. Perhaps, Fred who reminded him so much of his deceased, no murdered brother.

Angelina gave him a piercing look, "I know you must complete your training at St. Mungos as a Healer but that neon green is so not your colour."

"I had planned to be a private Healer." Gideon admitted shyly.

"Well you can tend to your children's needs." Arthur said quietly, considering he expected George and Percy to be pregnant soon anyway.

Considering that Percy and Oliver's Bonding would be coming up soon it was probable that both Fred's father's hadn't proper clothes. She hastily took their measure and pulled out dress robes shoving them into their hands. Insisting they try them on, as well as telling their shop boy to measure them for suits. They would need four black suits; it wouldn't be proper to wear Ball finery to a funeral.

Fred squeezed her shoulder; he knew the suits were for the memorial. He was grateful she didn't mention it aloud. If he knew Oliver, their former captain wouldn't mind her attending. Being former teammates and future in-laws it wouldn't be wrong for her to attend. Being a Prefect, Angelina had a good head on her shoulders, she was trustworthy and knew when he told her about what had happened to Oliver that she would be wrathful. When he and George mentioned their plan for a Prank War, she'd do her best to turn a blind eye to it. Though he hoped she'd join in a bit.

 

XoooooX

 

With all the purchases minus shoes made Draco led them out of Andre's they paused briefly to purchase shoes for the Yule Ball. They then portkeyed back to Hogwarts but not before sending house elves ahead with their purchases.

Draco mentioned wanting to take Harry back to the Manor where he could show Harry the kitchens or at least have Dreca do so. He did not even know where they were located. Having never truly explored the Manor. He'd been more keen on flying and brewing to consider it.

Charlie offered to make sure that the others returned to their House.

Luna asked stammeringly, "I hate to ask for favours but might my clothes for the ball be kept elsewhere for safe keeping?"

Angelina's eyes narrowed in worry, "Why?" that was an unusual request...

"Well you see prefect…my Housemates think it great fun to hide my things. Being that I'm always wandering around with my head in clouds they think I won't notice if my books, quills or shoes go missing." Luna said quietly.

"Rodger allows this?" she was incredulous.

"I didn't know that happened in other houses…" Sophronia admitted shame-faced, "Before Draco declared me a Halfblood sometimes I had similar acts purportrated against me."

Draco was seething.

"Peace cousin. There is nothing you can do about it." Luna said politely to calm him, "You can't influence another House's politics." She said catching his eye and communicating with his mentally.

'You're a Malfoy!' Draco grumbled, 'You're a descendant of Ravenclaw herself aren't you?'

'That is neither here nor there.' Luna chided him, though pleased he'd come to her defense. He was a good person at heart despite his previous attempts to act pompous. Convinced he'd gotten that out of his system, she broke the connection.

Angelina was thoughtful, "Why don't I keep them? You and Sophronia are welcome to get ready with Alicia, Katie and I. I can do your hair and make up."

Luna smiled, she was so radiant that one could almost glimpse her true self through the Glamour. "I'd like that. Thank you."

"'Thena? If you'd like to come down to the dungeons after class sometime we could study together. If you can't find a book, you can always use mine. They're used but serviceable."

Luna impetuously hugged Sophronia, "I think you are a wonderful person. I'm quite glad we're kin." Well with Sophronia being a Black and a Prewett Sophronia would be kin through Harry who was her cousin's mate. "I'm sure we'll be good friends.

Sophronia had never been an affectionate child, but there was something special about this 'Thena. She shyly hugged the tiny Ravenclaw back. Friends? She'd like that…Thena was a far nicer girl then the other Slytherin girl who'd accompanied them on their date, Tracey.

Draco, Harry and Remus left the other heading for the apartment Severus shared with his two mates.

Draco planned to floo to the Manor, after showing Harry around a bit he'd let the tiny lion decide what was for dinner.

 

 

Chapter Text

Chapter 28- Relaxing at Malfoy Manor

 

 

Severus started as the floo’s green flames leapt and crackles.

 

Draco looking extremely nonchalant stepped through first turning to pull Harry through.

 

Severus hurried from the settee falling to his knees and examining his son, “I heard. Are you alright? Why didn’t you come home?” that was twice in a matter of weeks that Draco had been injured. First by that fake Moody who transfigured Draco into a white ferret and slammed him repeatedly against a stone ceiling and floor. In the privacy of his own chamber’s he’d practically drowned his then godson in pain relieving potions, dreamless sleep droughts, and Skele-grow. He’d fretted and fumed, how dare they make Draco a laughing stalk like that? How could they allow a professor to mistreat any student in such a heinous way? Looking at his lover’s son it was hard to consider a punishment for ‘attempting’ to curse Harry when his back was turned. This was beyond punishment, it was beyond any sort of magical brutality he’d ever suffered at the hands of Black and Potter. To hear that Parkinson and that woman had attacked Draco, he was no weak ‘woman’ but this was his son, the son of his heart and now blood.

 

Draco sighed, “I’m fine papa, I was examined by Healers Smythe and Tonks. They recommended I rest. We went first to Celestine’s, I spent most of our time their sitting. Until Luna took pity on me, she healed the nerve damage the double bout of Cruciatus Curse I’d sustained. It was nothing too awful.”

 

Harry snorted, “Don’t lie Draco. As manly a face as you wished to put on, you were in pain. You don’t think I’d recognize trying to ignore pain?”

 

Severus could understand what Harry meant easily enough. “So you’re alright?”

 

“Yes papa. I’m fine. We picked up suitable attire for Sophronia and Luna at Celestine’s. Then we lunched at that same restaurant as last week. Then something interesting happened.”

 

“Oh?” Lucius asked eyebrow raised.

 

“Mr. Weasley showed up with Mr. Prewett!” Harry said excited, “Then Remus got all intense.”

 

“Intense?” Severus was curious.

 

Remus coughed embarrassed, “Gideon merely showed up to retrieve his wand, that odious woman had taken his, Fabian, their mother, their father and Bilius’ wands holding them over and giving them to the children rather then burying the wands with their masters and buying wands for them when they came of age.  I might have revealed a rather passionate interest in wandlore. Following graduation I had once hoped to apprentice to study beneath Mr. Ollivander who has no children to continue his work. Although I don’t agree with him that only unicorn hair, dragon heartstring and phoenix feathers make good wandcores. I had to pleasure to met his cousin due to Fred needing his own wand.” Remus’ eyes sparkled with pleasure.

 

“Remus said that Fred should have a Billywig stinger for a core. He said it would suit him. We discussed wandlore, he analysed our wands, even telling me about my parents! It was so cool!” Harry said bouncing in excitement.

 

Remus coughed, “Louis Ollivander said I had a talent. That teaching Defense was a waste. Wanted to discuss my thoughts on lore. He had just the sort of wand I mentioned for Fred, a Sycamore and Billywig stinger. It would do well with an inventive person.”

 

“Talent? I’d say you were intuitive. I’d love to see the kind of wands you’d create Remus if an Ollivander spoke highly of you.” Draco said pleasantly.

 

Remus glanced at Severus nervously, “Before I left his shop, Mr. Ollivander mentioned something odd. He said I must ask you about your wand. That I’d be surprised. He mentioned his cousin Garrick used to brag about his Phoenix and Yew creation He Who Must Not Be Named used. Apparently Louis was watching the Diagon Alley shop when Professor Slughorn escorted you in. he said the wand you left with was infinitely more powerful then the Dark Lord's.”

 

Severus coughed, “My wand? I’ve only made a brief study of wandlore. All quite intriguing stuff I’ll warrant but I’ll stick to my dusty tomes and scrolls of potions, draughts, poisons and antidotes.”

 

“Please papa? I’d love to see what Remus said your wand tells us about you.”

 

“Yes please Severus?” Harry’s plea was accompanied by a begging look that reminded one of those Chesapeake Bay retrievers that Lucius started raising after his father died to Narcissa’s horror.

 

Lucius was curious, “I’ve forgot what your wand is. Do please remind me Sèvere.”

 

Severus sighed, “Oh very well since I’m besieged on all sides. My wand is an inflexible, 15” Acacia wood with an Abraxan Feather.”

 

Remus was so shocked, he swayed visibly looking faint, he stumbled towards a nearby chair and collapsed into it. He opened his mouth a few times before he could bring himself to speak, “Merlin’s staff! Severus, do you have any idea what…of course you do. As vast as your magical talents are you must.”

 

Lucius was intrigued, what was so special about his Bondmate’s wand that would cause that sort of a reaction in Remus.

 

“Remus!” Harry whinged “Tell us…please…”

 

Remus swallowed gaining control of his shock, “Acacia wood…” he paused briefly “Acacia wands generally refused to produce magic for anyone but their owners, but conversely, seemed to withhold their full power from all but the most gifted wizards. Owners of Acacia wands were generally subtle wizards, which I dare say Severus is.” He meant that in a complimentary manner of course.

 

Severus didn’t remember coming across that in his cursory reading into wandlore, he was pleased, “My wand seemed to take to me from the start. It quite refused to work for anyone else even Professor Flitwick I remember. I was shocked that Professor Slughorn invited me to attend his Slug Club meetings my first year. It must have been because of my wand. He never seemed to regard me as much to court because of my looks and Muggle father. I think only Lucius and Lily looked beyond mere surface appearance.”

 

“He was jealous of you.” Remus said quietly, “Your brewing was clearing in a league of its own from the first day of term our first year. He’d compliment you to your face but glare at you in jealousy behind your back. One or twice I was sure he’d muck up your potion to mark you down.”

 

Severus smirked, “Oh he tried. Too bad for him I was keen enough at brewing to fix any little mishaps of accidentally knocking too much of something into my cauldron.”

 

“What about his wandcore?” Lucius asked this was interesting. Perhaps, he’d see if he could use some of his influence to help Remus find his place in the wandmaking profession.

 

“Abraxan hair and feathers may take some time to master, but will produce very rewarding results. It is well balanced between speed of casting and power. Strong ties to air element. Wielders often have an excellent constitution for alcohol consumption.”

 

Lucius snorted, “I’ve never known him to be drunk. He can and did drink many Death Eaters under the table or even into unconsciousness trying to get them to spill secrets.”

 

Severus glared,  “You are fond of liquor yourself Luce”

 

Lucius bowed, “Indeed but I’ve never lost my temper under its influence or devilged privileged information.”

 

“What about your wand Dad? What is it?” Draco asked this was all interesting.

 

“Yes Luce, let Remus dissect your wand for us.” Severus said dryly.

 

Lucius’ eyes twinkled, “Which one? For I bear two, one I have full mastery of and the other sometimes I wonder.”

 

“A family wand? One carried by all Heads of the House of Malfoy?” Remus asked.

 

“True, the Malfoy wand is over a thousand years old. Family legend maintains an ancestor of the Ollivanders once crafted it for the Head of the Family. It was created to serve multiple masters, rather then most wands created to cleave to one unless it’s loyalty was won away “

 

“Many ancient families purchased such wands,” Remus said thoughtfully, “What is this wand?”

 

“A sturdy, 18” Elm and Dragon Heartstring wand.” Lucius said with an air of feigned boredom.

 

“Hm, there are ten common varieties of heartstring used for wand worldwide, although there are many more dragon species. Specialises in hexes, sometimes especially for poisoning spells. It lacks subtlety, very powerful. Very good for any form of Elemental Magic and is considered by Garrick Ollivander to be most common among Slytherins. Some consider Dragons to be of a dual nature, with some providing benevolent and lucky, and others malevolent and a sign of death.” Remus closed his eyes searching through his mind for his memories regarding Elm as a wandwood. “Ah yes Elm, according to Muggles it is associated with Mother and Earth Goddesses, said to be where fairies dwell.  Sturdy, adds stability and grounding to a spell. I wonder Lucius if there is Fae in your blood as well as Veela.”

 

“Interesting, what do you make of a flexible 12 ¾” Ivy and Centaur hair.” Lucius was far more interested then he let on, although Severus claimed Draco never complained about his wand. The boy never did as well as one expected one of his intelligence to do. Perhaps, Draco’s reasonably springy 10” Hawthorn and Dragon heartstring wasn’t as suitable as Ollivander believed. Perhaps, Remus could as Draco’s former and soon to be current professor could recommend a better wand.

 

“Let me see, Ivy is a strong all-around wandwood. It is associated with ambition and personal drive, which makes it especially well suited to Slytherin users. Particularly you Lucius with your ingratiating way,” Remus teased good-naturedly, “It holds meanings of attachment and eternal friendship, fidelity, and wedded love. ‘I die where I cling.’ Is a saying associated with Ivy, I dare say it suits you well. As for Centaur hair, its very strong for Astronomy and Divination, more often found with Ravenclaws rather then Slytherin. Given its ties to seers I’d believe it would be more likely to be found in Luna’s hand rather then yours. It is associated with aloofness, intelligence and wisdom. However it has a more negative association of a tendency to watch rather than take action. Not a fast caster but a powerful one.”

 

Severus chuckled, “Sounds an awful lot like Luce.”

 

Lucius muttered, it did; for he was more of a watcher, stepping in when he felt it was warranted but mostly staying to the sides unless he had no choice.  There were some who had crueler words to describe his relations with high placed persons. Longing to change the subject from himself, “Draco has a reasonably springy 10” Hawthorn and Dragon heartstring. As much as Ollivander praised it, I don’t think it suits him.”

 

“Suiting the boy I thought I was instructing I’m sure it didn’t for he was an arrogant, cruel boy who was disrespectful to his instructors and bullied fellow students unmercifully so I’d heard. However the nature I’d observed in Draco recently has caused me to reexamine my interpretations of his character. I’ll not repeat my views on Dragon Heartstring again for I’m sure I’ve thoroughly bored you on it. Hawthorn symbolises protection, so it is associated with protection and love. It is considered very strong for Defense Against the Dark Arts. Which is good since you’ve both sought to avoid teaching him Dark Arts. It is a good wandwood for Transfiguration.”

 

Draco schooled his face to avoid the blush he’d known was sure to erupt on his features, a Veela was known for their protection and love for their mate. He felt a rush of attraction for Harry and a desire to protect him from all who wished him harm. “Interesting,” he said calmly, “As good as I am at Transfiguration, I find it interests me little. Just as wandlore is not to papa’s taste. Blaise is as passionate about the subject as you are about wandlore.”

 

“Perhaps, it doesn’t suit you as your father claims. It does reflect a part of your character though, however though a wand chooses a wizard it is not truly sentient and merely was attracted to a tiny bit of your personality. So, Transfiguration is not where your talents lie?”

 

“Indeed not as his first teacher, I ought to know his talents are similar to my own. He excels at Charms, Potions, Ancient Runes, Occlumency and Legilimency as do I.” Severus said a look of pride coupled with an almost preening air.

 

“He was clearly meant to be your son, Severus. In intellect he resembles you but as to his better character traits he takes after Lucius’.” Remus said thoughtfully, “He’s got too strong a character to suit Unicorn hair. Veela hair might work but it’s dangerous to work with and I’m not sure it would suit him any better then Dragon Heartstring. His wand works for him but it not a perfect fit. Perhaps, he should have gone to Louis rather then Garrick for his wand. I wonder, perhaps Rowan would do for him. Don’t know where I might find some.”

 

Draco was interested, “Rowan? It has a saying about I heard.”

 

“There are superstitions with some wand woods. Such as, ‘When his wand's oak and hers is holly, then to marry would be folly.’ Garrick Ollivander holds that to be nonsense. Another is regarding Rowan as you mentioned, ‘Rowan gossips, chestnut drones, ash is stubborn, hazel moans’. Not sure I buy into that either. Rowan is a dense wood, sometimes difficult to work with. Like Hawthorn it is associated with protection, especially against enchantments and beguiling. Which would suit a wizard skilled in Mental Arts to protect oneself. It’s strong for Charms, Divination and Transfiguration. It’s said to have an affinity for Ancient Runes, but strong all-around in various magical fields. It’s said to be an excellent dueling wand. Users are often highly intelligent, visionaries or highly intuitive.”

 

“Being Veela and our son, he’s clearly highly intelligent.” Severus proudly, “Being Veela and his sense that all wasn’t right with Harry as well as knowing instinctively despite their past history that Harry had had nothing to do with his name coming out of the Goblet of Fire.”

 

Lucius smirked, of course their son privately tutored from his early years by a wizard of Severus’ talents and knowledge. He chided himself for missing out on Draco’s formative years not having a hand in his son and heir’s grooming. As it was, he had his mate to thank for Draco’s good breeding he supposed. His own father would be appalled that his son had been raised, cosseted and taught above his years by ‘a lowly, dirty little Halfblood’ who had the audacity to fancy himself in love with such a personage as someone of the Malfoy family who had years of breeding and money as to be beyond his reach despite Severus’ bearer being a daughter of the Prince line.

 

“Harry claims to enjoy cooking and wanted to do so for us. I arranged with Dreca for him to be able to use our kitchens though she’ll have to show us the way for I have no idea where they lie in a House such as this.” For the Manor was a Quadrangle, built around a square courtyard of a garden with corridor windows that overlooked it. It used to be quite the thing for members of the Malfoy family to live here. The South rooms were home to the Nurseries where the children of the Family lived. Their parents living in appropriate wings, with the Head’s family living to the North. Draco had due to whatever reason grown up in the nurseries alone. Watched by Dreca and begrudgingly a selection of witch nurses that for some reason or another papa found fault with and dismissed.  They’d haughtily at first claimed he was a nobody who had no say. He’d snark right back in that way of his, that the Master, Lord Malfoy put him in charge of his son’s care and that if he said she was to pack up and leave she better. Not to let the wards clasp shut on her before she exited them.

 

“The kitchen is in the basement over the cellar, one floor above your lab Draco.” Severus said smoothly. “I got lost once and wandered in. Thank Salazar that woman rarely left her wing except when you had guests.”

 

“She was rather put out we wouldn’t share rooms. Not that I cared much, since I took the rooms that had a passage from the mistress’ room. There we stayed happy as a lark in a tree.” Lucius said smiling at Severus, who’d calmed once Draco assured him that he was quite well despite his double bout of Cruciatus Curse.

 

“So you don’t mind if he makes supper?” Draco asked.

 

Remus smiled to himself, “No, I’d quite like it. Lily was a brilliant cook. I’m decent having to take over for mother when she took ill. James and Siri were a disaster in the kitchen. Siri you see, he chased off his house elf, never liked them much. Siri burned water and James broke cheese if you understand my meaning. Either Lily invited them over to her parents’ house, brought by meals or had to cook for them. Although they often dined late after cases in the Leaky Cauldron or Brews and Stews. I cooked when I was around. Siri wanted James and Lily to stay with him after they were Bonded but Lily wanted a place of their own. She was starting to see Siri was a bad influence on James. James had his good points but with Siri around he could be a utter toerag. As we three know well.” Briefly avoiding mentioning the hell their Hogwarts years had been to Severus. As good of a woman Lily was and as gentle and forgiving her nature how in the world did she fall in love with someone like James? Who bullied her best friend and practically her brother to within an inch of his sanity to the point where Severus lost his temper and call her a, Godric and Salazar forgive his mate, a ‘Mudblood’.

 

“It’s getting late. Had I the time I’d make a nice pot-roast. It’s too last for a proper one, perhaps a nice salad, roasted potatoes and chicken with lemon and thyme.”

 

Remus could hardly prevent a groan, “Sounds just like your mother. All though it’s a bit late in the year for salad.”

 

“Oh dear, I hadn’t thought of that. It’s not like I’m at Number Four Private Drive. Mrs. Dursley would hit up the Markets for fresh vegetables and then groan about the cost.” Harry said quietly.

 

“You’ll just have to see what the house elves have.” Draco said trying to comfort him a bit.

 

“Perhaps, they’ve got something nice. The Manor is a nice estate we manage quite well, the house elves rarely have to go to market you see. We’ve kept goats, sheep, and cows and farmed here for generations. We don’t keep witches and wizards in service nowadays. In the ages past we did but numbers dwindled too much and it became far too unseemly to have Muggles about. Squibs are alright I suppose but they always have like Muggle a bit of a jealousy against their ‘betters’ for we have magic and they don’t.” Lucius said blandly.

 

Severus winced slightly; to distract his mate he swiftly changed the subject. “Luce why don’t we head to the Music room? It’s been some time since we played together. I taught Draco some but he could use better instruction from a more adapt musician.”

 

Draco’s eyes shone, Dad? Teach him to play? Papa always said that his father was a far more superior musician and that he made his own playing seem like a mere trifle.

 

Remus took the subtle hint, “I’ll show Harry to the kitchen then. We’ll send an elf to summon you to supper. Where shall we dine then?” He’d never been here or indeed to a house such as Malfoy Manor.

 

“If it were a grand party it’s be the formal dining room off the ball room.  There is the formal parlour opposite the dining room. Connecting to the formal parlour is the gentlemen’s parlour of course.” Lucius said thoughtfully, he snapped his fingers.

 

An elf appeared, “Yes what Master be wanting?”

 

“Treca, make sure the family dining room is ready.” 

 

Treca bowed, “Treca and Dippy already see to it. All dusted and polished. Nice crisp linen and family silver set. Treca be deciding which china she ought to set the table with.”

 

“Oh, the Malfoy china will do.”

 

“Yes Master. Treca do. Wine and coffee be served?”

 

“Yes. Port and scotch decantered in the green parlour.”

 

“Of course Master. Milk for the young Masters?”

 

“Yes, port and scotch be a bit strong of those of formative years.” Lucius said pleasantly.

 

“Dippy off to put the music room to rights. We so happy to see that Master wishes to play. Manor should ring with laughter and music like before. We elves tell stories of when this was joyful place.” Then she looked as if she thought she’d said too much.

 

“It’s quite alright.” Severus said kindly, he’d learn to appreciate house elves. Treca’d half served him for years out of duty to her master Lucius whom she seemed to worship. Lucius never had a harsh word for her and often relied on her.

 

“We’d best see to dinner hadn’t we Harry?” Remus said standing and stretching, trying to distract himself from his thoughts on Draco’s possible Rowan wand. That is if he could find a Rowan tree.

 

XoooooX

 

Lucius’ fingers were entwined with Severus as he led the way to the Music room. It was spacious with high vaulted ceilings painted with nymphs and satyrs.

 

There was a violin, a harp and harpsichord...

 

Instruments that Severus knew besides those were the viola, a cello, what Muggles would call a grand piano, a glass harp and a lute. There were also horns and flutes.

 

Lucius had learned music when he was younger having been under the care of excellent tutors. He’d been taught first the piano, then finding a flair for classical instruments such as the Viola and Harp. He’d taught Severus piano wanting to play duets together. Severus had introduced him to Muggle composers such as Vivaldi, Mozart, and Beethoven. His favourite pieces besides the old Wizarding tunes such as the Founders Ode or the French songs he learned to play by ear.

 

The summer section of Vivaldi’s Seasons was amoung Severus’ favourite pieces. He couldn’t play it well but he summoned both the Viola and Piano music. Draco had his father’s flair for music.

 

Lucius nodded, “You adore Vivaldi.” Tuning the viola he gestured with the bow for Draco to test the tuning of the piano, “Show me what you can do." Vivaldi was good but he did enjoy The Planets, by a Muggle named Gustav Holst who was too talented conjuring the evocative feelings of the planets. His Veela nature was drawn to its cathartic nature. Mars, the Bringer of War he played when that woman put him in a temper. Severus could make him more partial to the movement of Venus, the Bringer of Joy or the movement attributed to Jupiter, the Bringer of Jollity. Back to Vivaldi, the Four Seasons was written for the Violin, though he himself painstakingly transposed a simple accompaniment for Severus to play on the piano. It better suited the harpsichord but Severus insisted that the piano was the best he could do. He wanted his mate to play along, he pulled out a simplified version of The Summer moment for Violin he’d made for Severus, giving Draco a quick lesson on the violin. Showing him how to make it sing.

 

Draco had tried to teach himself the violin and thanks to his early music lessons could read music. He caught on quickly and was soon playing the first bars.

 

Lucius nudged a protesting Severus to the piano, “I do wish to play together.”

 

Severus couldn’t resist, it had been too long since he’d played with either of them.

 

Lucius tapped out the beat.

 

Soon the voices of the piano, violin and viola soared, Lucius’ viola was the more difficult and proved an magnificent background to Severus’ shy piano. The piece often called the storm gain majesty as Draco and Severus gained confidence.

 

XoooooX

 

Remus led Harry down to the kitchen.

 

There were large deep brick ovens, heated by hot fires. There was a stove but a type of which Harry’d never seen. He groaned, he knew how to cook the Muggle way and he was lost.

 

Remus noticed his panic, he remembered with an ache Lily having the same when faced with Siri’s kitchen. “It’s not so bad.” He called out, “Dreca? Harry be needing chicken, thyme, lemon juice and pepper.”

 

Dreca hurried do as she was bid, “be Dreca to wash chicken legs? Thighs? Breasts? Wings?”

 

Harry swallowed, “Um…thighs?”

 

Dreca grinned, “Yes Master Harry. Right away Master Harry.”

 

Remus squeezed Harry’s shoulder gently, “You wanted baked potatoes? Either I or the house elves can show you how best to cook them.”

 

Harry wrung his hands, “When I said I wanted to cook I never dreamed I’d be attempting in…a picturesque, old-fashioned kitchen like this.”

 

“Magic and electricity don’t always mesh well. Not many Muggle devices have been made to work well in magical environments. Too much of the Wizarding world has little respect for Muggle inventions and discoveries.”

 

“So much to get used to…” Harry mused, “I wonder what vegetables I can use.”

 

Dippy fairly skip up to them, “Master Harry be wishing to see the cellar? Dippy take.”

 

“Cellar?” Remus asked.

 

“Yes, Manor have big cellar. Store lots of food. All keep fresh. Be special magic. House elf magic. Come!” she took Harry’s arm tugging him towards the small wooden door off to the side.

 

They went down a steep dark staircase that went down a few steps, about seven probably.

 

Dippy led them into a large chamber; it was partitioned off with something was a cross between a sort of wall and a thin wooden screen. There was a sort of aisle; there were large hunks of meat. There were also shelves of glass jars bearing pickled vegetables, jams and preserves. Something like Mrs. Dursleys’ canned things from the pantry. There were also herbs and what almost seemed to be fresh produce hanging from the ceiling or sitting in baskets on shelves.

 

Reminding Harry of a large walking freezer he’d once seen on the Telly.

 

“I’ve never seen such a place…” Remus said in awe, “How does it keep?”

 

“House elf magic. Something like preserving charms but different. Last long, long time. Dippy’s grand dam say in case of bad crop, save much. Use old first. Once found fruit ten year still good. Grand dam said find older, made cider fresh.”

 

Harry scurried along the shelves, “Some of that romaine lettuce, spinach, tomatoes, cucumbers, ooh baby carrots.” He wanted a dressing he favoured, calling out spices needed for a simple vinaigrette, “vinegar too.”

 

“What sort of vinegar Master Harry be wanting?” 

 

“White?” Harry said shyly.

 

“Master Harry want Dippy chop?”

 

Harry shook his held, “I’m used to chopping. Been using a knife since I was five.”

 

Dippy’s eyes went wide, “Why? You being an heir just like Master Draco. You be Lord Potter one day.”

 

“Harry was raised by his mother’s Muggle relations. They made Harry cook and clean for them.”

 

“Like house elf? That wrong. Very wrong.”

 

“Perhaps,” Harry admitted, “but I like cooking. Ooh blackberries! And cocoa! Dippy if I mix a cake can one of you take it out when it’s done?” he had no idea how hot one of those ovens ran.

 

“Do for potatoes too. House elves good cooks. Old recipes. Always share.”

 

With the ingredients he wanted selected despite being off season Harry skipped back to the kitchen where Dippy, Dreca and Remus were only too kind to help him learn how to cook in the old-fashioned but nevertheless charming kitchen.

 

At one point Harry said something about how he wished he had thought to make biscuits only to see an unfamiliar elf pulling a set of fluffy biscuits out of the brick oven.

 

On a tray was a dish of fresh cream butter and a pitcher of fresh milk, brought over that morning Dreca assured them. Knowing the Masters would be home they’d requested that their estate dairy send up some.

 

Harry again marvelled how well stocked the Manor’s kitchen cellar was, fresh milk and butter? He’d never had such luxury…

 

Dreca spirited off to summon her masters when Harry declared everything was finished including the cake which Dippy had placed aside with the house elf version of a warming charm to keep the cake as warm and fluffy as when it came out of the oven.

 

There were two tables in the kitchen, one long like a House table at Hogwarts only more ornate and the other was smaller meant only to seat not more then twelve. The smaller table was arrayed with the dishes of food. The dishes were of monogrammed and family crested china and silver. Was that how the House Elves at Hogwarts arranged meals? Transferring hot food from the kitchens to the tables somehow switching empty dishes with full ones filled with steaming plates?

 

Harry remembered as Dippy escorted them to the family dining room, that even when one arrived late to a meal at Hogwarts that the food was just as hot as when it first appeared on the House tables.

 

XoooooX

 

Lucius, Severus and Draco where playing through another of the Planet movements, Jupiter, Bringer of Joy, with Lucius pausing to give some instruction to help them play through the difficult piece despite his simplified versions. 

 

Dreca popped into the Music Room bowing nervously, “Dreca sorry to interrupt Masters but Master Harry say dinner ready. He be meeting in family dining room.”

 

“Thank you Dreca.” Draco said grinning, music always calmed him and he was ecstatic that Dad was proud of him and Severus. He might never be as good as Lucius but he could one day hold his own.

 

Lucius put up his viola, loosening the strings on the bow before putting it back on it’s stand and casting his dust repelling charm.

 

Draco shyly copied his father with the violin; he’d caught on quickly though he’d only played the pianoforte before.

 

Severus closed his instrument, “We should wash our hands.”

 

“There is a washroom near the dining room,” Lucius offered smoothing his robes.

 

Although it was considered family tradition for the Malfoy children to eat meals with the family after the age of nine Draco spent little time in the family dining room having been excluded from his then parents company. Severus came over on his release from professor duties to check his homework and give him lessons. He looked forward to the attention, his nurses did their best he supposed but nothing replaces a parent. As he grew older Dreca took over more of his care and the nurses were at last gone. Severus was still busy but now that he was at Hogwarts as a student he saw more of his now papa.

 

XoooooX

 

Harry had washed his hands in the Manor’s large kitchen before leaving it as had Remus.

 

They reached the family dining room a few minutes before Lucius, Severus and Draco.

 

Harry could see Draco was glowing; spending the time with his fathers had been good for him. He felt a bit of an ache not to have his own parents…

 

Draco let go of his fathers’ hands, something he’d never do in public but this was home and it was different. He hurried to sit beside Harry leaning over to kiss him softly, “tell me, did every thing go alright? What did you make?”

 

Remus laughed, “Judge for yourself.”

 

The dishes were now full of steaming food; there was a platter of baked lemon and herb chicken, a bowl of fresh salad, a flask of dressing, a basket of steaming rolls, a disk of fresh butter, a pitcher of warm fresh milk and a plate with fresh from the oven potatoes. There was also a complimentary white wine to accompany the chicken and to aid with digestion.

 

Draco eagerly filled his plate with the wonderful smelling food, placing a warm biscuit on his bread plate and serving himself salad. He took a bit of chicken and moaned, it was tender and the flavours…

 

Harry asked nervously, “Is it alright? I’ve never used an oven or a stove like the one’s you have. I was worried it wouldn’t turn out.”

 

Lucius laughed, “He wouldn’t sound like that if it wasn’t. I’ve only heard him like that with desserts.” He delicately cut himself a bite of chicken and sampled it, a look of wonder filled his face. “You,” he said after finishing the bite, “are an excellent cook.” Those Muggles beat him? Imbeciles…

 

Severus tasted the chicken and tears filled his eyes but didn’t fall. He swallowed before looking at Harry, “It tastes just like Lily’s…”

 

Remus nodded after he finished his own bite, “He may look like James apart from his eyes but he is far more like Lily. I was having flashbacks to her first visit to Siri’s kitchen after he turned off the house elves. Foolish thing to do, considering they stand between you and many things including starvation.”

 

Harry blushed, “No wonder they don’t take kindly to Hermione’s desire to free them.”

 

Dreca and Dippy looked up from their place near the window waiting to see if they were needed.

 

Dippy spoke hotly, “He’s a bad un that one. Who can blame him being that woman’s elf? But wanting pay? Bad Dobby. He’s not real Malfoy elf. We don’t want freedom or paying,” she spat the last word. "I’m so ashamed of him,”

 

Dreca sighed, glancing up; “Dippy liked Dobby until he started talking about freedom. She thinks he’ll come to a bad end.”

 

“He works for me now. I think he’ll behave.” Harry said trying to deflect the conversation.

 

“We spoke out of turn.” Dreca said thinly.

 

“So he can‘t mingle with mingle with other house elves?” Remus asked curious.

 

Dreca nodded, “Should keep eye on dishes. Mister Harry be wanting us to bring up his cake for Master Draco.”

 

Draco turned to Harry, pausing in his barely polite eating mannerisms. “You made me a cake?”

 

Harry blushed nodding, “You may tease Vince and Greg for being greedy with sweets but you like them too. You’ll eat anything with chocolate. When we have blackberry anything, you smear the preserves over toast or you eat just the blackberries in the porridge.”

 

Draco shifted nervously, “Blackberries are so good!”

 

The five practically family ate their way through Harry’s delicious meal before Draco turned to Dreca, “Cake?”

 

The house elf twittered and the empty supper dishes were replaced by a cake, but what a cake! It was two layers of chocolate cake with blackberry filling, there was chocolate frosting and a heavy amount of blackberries covering the cake.

 

Draco whooped and earned a glare from his fathers, to which he paid no heed.

 

A shy Harry asked Lucius if he would serve it.

 

He did so.

 

Soon they were digging into Harry’s cake with identical expressions of bliss.

 

Draco was bouncing and making such noises of delight one might mistake him for orgasming at the table.

 

When they had finished their cake, Draco had seconds, Harry found himself being kissed eagerly by Draco.

 

Lucius chuckled, “Oh dear you two, I suppose I better let you stay the night. You will return to Hogwarts by Lunch.”

 

Draco nodded, “If we have to have Dreca Apparate us into the Entrance Hall we will be.”

 

Harry was blushing; he’d never had someone compliment his cooking before…

 

“You’ll have to cook for us again Harry. It reminds us of your mother. A really lovely woman.” Severus said quietly.

 

Remus nodded, “Wonderful meal. Better then I could have done.”

 

Harry was about to cry from happiness when Draco led him up to his new room in the Lord’s family quarters.

 

 

XoooooX

 

Lucius was finally comfortable with Remus to consider allowing him to sleep in their bed. He still wasn’t fond of the idea of having to share his mate with anyone much less a werewolf. It not only broke everything he’d been taught but went against his Veela instincts, a werewolf was a creature of darkness. Remus was the very opposite of his nature as a Veela who was a Creature of Light. He also wondered who would be the True Dominant, Severus was submissive to both of them but only one Dominant could be considered the Head of their family.

 

Severus must have known what his Bondmate was thinking; he leaned over to whisper in Lucius’ ear, “Bed?”

 

Remus’ ears twitched, he could smell the faint smell of sex that teased him as it wafted from his companions. He forced down his jealousy, Lucius had been Severus’ lover and mate long before he’d become attracted to the formerly abused Slytherin.

 

Lucius raised a perfect eyebrow, “It’s early Sèvere.”
 

Severus’ Glamour shivered at that endearment, “Luce.” He forced the feeling away enough so he could think clearly, “Please?”

 

“Please what?” Lucius teased.

 

“Let Remus come to bed with us. I need him…” Severus said quietly, he rarely if ever begged, it was a sign of weakness, to soften the blow he repeated words that Lucius had spoke when they were to be parted after the then Head Boy’s graduation, “Ni moi sans vous, ni vous sans moi.”

 

Lucius glanced at the werewolf and sighed, as much as he hated to admit it, Remus Lupin was an honourable man. He was going to have to learn to share if that was what Severus wanted. He said gruffly, “Comme te veux.”

 

Severus grinned; turning to pulled a confused Remus into a kiss. “Come to bed?”

 

Remus glanced up at Lucius.

 

Lucius nodded, “It’s our job to keep him content. He’s had enough sorrow in his life.” So what if he spoiled Sev? The man deserved it…

 

The Severus who smirked at them both made them a bit wary, “Hurry up. Before I have to try to satisfy myself.”

 

For someone who’d suffered more broken bones and injuries then they could imagine was scurrying away at a pace that floored them.

 

Lucius and Remus had no choice but to give chase.

 

XoooooX

 

Severus reached the Lord of the Manor’s quarters that Lucius had redone for him. He had no need to admire it. His rounds with Lucius early this afternoon merely whetted his appetite, his need. He needed them both…he stripped, his clothing relocating to a hamper for the elves to wash. He used a charm to turn back the bedding and one to prepare himself. Not too much, he enjoyed the burn but what would suffice for just Lucius making love to him wouldn’t quite do for them both. He desired them both…

 

He lay on the bed, pinching a nipple into hardness, his legs spread and stroking himself. He’d be hard to resist…

 

The door flew open.

 

Lucius’ grey eyes were stormy with desire while Remus’ were decidedly amber in colour, their own sex no doubt straining in their pants. They reeked of desire…

 

Severus smirked, “Well? See something you like?”

 

Lucius declothed himself with the flick of his wand, “Watch yourself Sèvere.“

 

“Sev,” Remus growled softly, his eyes drinking in the slight, scarred form of his mate. “Sev…”

 

Severus gave them a look of pure innocence, “I am doing nothing. But I will do something if you don’t get up here.”

 

Lucius grumbled, “Tu me rends fou.”

 

Remus muttered, “What is it with you two and French?”

 

Severus swallowed, “Luce knows it turns me on…”

 

Lucius snorted, “Of course it does. So what do you want?”

 

Severus’ eyes were quite black as he replied, “Baise-moi.”

 

Lucius smirked, “Dirty mouth for a Lord or a legal consort.”

 

“Look who taught me French you pervert.” Severus shot back; he turned his gaze to Remus, “Comprende Francais.” Then he repeated his desire in French.

 

Remus’ ears burned, he repeated it but heard English, “You…want me to fuck you?”

 

Severus rolled his eyes, “That’s the general idea my wolf,” he’d actually used the endearment ‘mon loup’ not that Remus actually heard that under the influence of the comprehend French spell. A few nights with that cast on the werewolf and he’d be cursing in bed like they did.

 

Remus glanced at Lucius, “A pity, I know what he wants but I’ve never done it.”

 

Lucius chuckled, “I see.” Flicking his wand and muttering a spell, he cast warm lubricant into Severus’ no doubt slightly widened and relaxed channel. Sendng his wand to rest on a nearby table, he spread Severus’ legs more to bear his entrance, “See this? He wants us to fuck him here.”

 

Remus muttered, “Knew that. I can read.”

 

Lucius squeezed his shoulder, “I expect you do. But I doubt they told you how to double penetrate a wizard."

 

Remus blushed and shook his head. “No.”

 

Severus grumbled, “One of you fuck me damn it! I don’t care which. Don’t make me conjure a sex toy and do it myself!” he would too if they made him wait much longer. He was horny and he’d waited too long for this. Between Lucius’ jealous and Remus’ desire not to cause offense, he was suffering from a severe lack of sexual enjoyment. He was supposed to get more sex with that idiot-usurping woman gone not less!

 

Lucius sighed, “Demanding!” with wandless magic he levitated Severus, “Do us a favour and lay down Remus. I’d fuck him first but double penetrating him is difficult. He’ll have take you inside himself first and then bend over some so I can get inside him.” He glanced at his still levitating Bondmate, “You sure you want this? You prepared yourself? We don’t want to injure you.”

 

Severus rolled his eyes, “I’m not a child. I’m only a few years younger then you Lucius Malfoy! I know what I want and I want both your cocks in my arse now!” then he proceeded to muttering in Gaelic at them both.

 

Lucius laughed, “I can still understand you, my little asshole.”

 

Remus noticed Severus stiffen as he moved to lay beneath the slightly older man and did not understand.

 

Severus growled, “I may enjoy being fucked by you Lucius Malfoy but I don’t enjoy being called a little cocksucker by you or anyone else.”

 

Remus guessed the phrase must have multiple meanings and the spell had chosen the least offensive one to translate.

 

Lucius lowered Severus to lay beside Remus, he had to admit that the werewolf was rather attractive. His affliction had made him have a rather muscular and tanned physique. He glanced at Severus,  “How do you wish to do this? Facing him or me?”

 

Severus sighed, he just wanted to be fucked why did it matter? Then his more logical mind sobered him, even for wizards double-penetration was uncommon and had to done with care. Too much aggression on the part of the dominants and the submissive could be grievously injured and it would be far too embarrassing for the submissive to seek the services of a healer, which could lead to further harm. “I’ll lay on top of Remus facing him,” knowing it would crush Lucius a bit, “Only because it will be easier to move me that way.”

 

Remus swallowed he’d get to see Severus in all his glory after a fashion? Riding his cock as Lucius fucked him?

 

Lucius grumbled, “Very well. Best get us as hard as you like and then proceed to ride the wolf.”

 

Severus tugged Lucius closer and brought the two cocks together, his crippled looking hands quite adapt at pleasuring two, though it was usually his own and Lucius’. He eyed them both, Lucius’ was much longer then his own and a good deal thicker, while Remus’ was between them in length but was of a prestigious girth. He licked his lips in anticipation.

 

Remus groaned seeing Severus stroking him like that and licking his lips he was almost undone.

 

Severus grumbled summoning a potion, taking a sip and holding it to Remus’ lips, “Virgin you maybe my wolf but if one is your limit I won’t be pleased. Swallow that.”

 

Remus did as he was bidden though thoroughly embarrassed, “What is it?”

 

“A potion of his own concoction.” Lucius said taking a swallow. “It grants the partaker the ability to have multiple orgasms. We’ve only used it a time or two, never really had the time to enjoy it.”

 

Severus muttered tossing the vial aside, “Pretty sure you used it that one Hogsmeade Weekend.” Flushing slightly, the time he was sure his lost pregnancy had been conceived.

 

“That’s enough Severus, he’ll come if you continue.” Lucius chided.

 

Severus moved to straddle Remus holding the thick cock in position to sink down on it. “Like as not the fool of a wolf will come the moment he gets inside me. I’ll not be pleased.”

 

Lucius chuckled, “He’ll soon recover, I ought to know. He’ll have no choice with the friction of me fucking you, it will make him ready in no time.”

 

Remus was highly embarrassed, he didn’t like thinking about Severus being Lucius’  lover but his cock twitched in his mate’s hand as he though about Lucius’ cock thrusting against his own.

 

Severus groaned as he felt Remus’ thickness sink past both rings of muscle, he worried that he’d not prepared properly. Remus was thicker then he’d expected having never truly seen his endowment. He’d be in trouble later and Lucius would lecture him. Though thankfully not in the boys’ earshot, although he’d been about fourteen when he lost his virginity to Lucius, considering Harry being a submissive Chuvash until they figured out how to make a mating with a Veela work Harry would have to abstain from penetrative sex. Hopefully they figured it out before Harry’s first Heat…he gasped as he felt Remus’ hung and bulging bollocks resting against his arse. “Salazar’s…” he couldn’t think clearly to finish the expletive.

 

Lucius kissed his neck and massaged his back, “You alright my heart?”  an endearment he used only in bed, when he threw aside his mask and was at his most tender.

 

Severus took slow breaths, “He looks big…but he feels bigger…its different…” he mumbled, he relished the familiar calming presence of Lucius’ body pressed to his, “I’ll be fine.” He all but snapped, “Just go slowly. I’m not waiting all night! I need this. If I go with either of you separately you’ll want to fight. This is the only way.” He smirked, “unless I convince Remus…” his eyes twinkling with mischief and intrigue.

 

Remus was trying to hold back an orgasm that was like trying to hold back a flood with one sandbag. “Convince me what?”

 

Severus kissed him intensely, “To let me see what the joys of Chasing are. I’d never dare ask Lucius to let me…you’re different.”

 

Remus could hardly breathe, he’d wondered how they’d incorporate him into their sex life but he’d never dare consider Severus might want his arse. He almost came, it was so different to actually be inside his mate, to feel that pulsing warmth all around him. Even amoung werewolves he was unique, James had a few girls before Lily but was faithful from then on. Siri wasn’t the type to settle down seriously, and no girl was every really interesting in Wormtail. He’d been the odd one, the virgin, the one who could never bring himself to have sex just for sex’s sake and desired to cleave to his mate. At this moment he realized, he’d have to cleave to both. He doubted he’d be allowed to submit to just Severus, Lucius would want to put him in his place. He had to admit, the former Prince of Slytherin was good-looking, he could see him pressed intimately against Severus, rocking him and slowly his former year mate began to ride him.

 

Severus could feel Lucius’ cock pressed to his back, he wanted it, craved it but he needed to get used to the broadness of Remus’ manhood first..

 

After a few moments, Lucius pushed Severus down so that Remus bottomed out and then made him lay down on the werewolf’s body. He glared at Remus, “Hold him still. Don’t let him squirm. Distract him.”

 

Remus nodded, a bit nervous about feeling that pureblood cock against his own once more. He pulled Severus into a demanding kiss, reaching between them to wrap his own hand over the potion master’s much slimmer manhood.

 

Severus would deny he whimpered into the kiss as Remus touched him, but whimper he did.

 

Lucius hastily cast more lubricant on his cock before moving to thrust inside Severus’ arse, a place that by rights as his Bondmate and Lord belonged to him. He was going to remind them both just whose bed this was and who ruled in the bedroom. He thrust slowly into his longtime lover and now Bondmate, pressing Remus’ thick cock firmly against Severus’ prostate no doubt.

 

Severus winced as Lucius entered his arse, he broke the kiss laying his head on the werewolf’s shoulder and started cursing, “Holy fucking shit, God damn it.”

 

Lucius stopped, the vulgar French cursing warning him that Severus was hurting if not extremely discomforted. He growled at the potions master, “You're too tight. What were you thinking? Idiot!”

 

Severus took a bit to relax and rounded upon Lu