Chapter 1: Ain’t got no money~♪. . . Bitch, you’re filthy rich!
July 31st, 1991
Surprisingly—or not, is a stagnant civilization—, Diagon Alley looks just like it did in the ’40s, the colors are a bit washed off after more than sixty years but everything else is the same.
The entrance of the Leaky Cauldron with its haggard black door barely hanging from its hinges and Tom, with greying hair because of old age, welcomes her to the start of her new life.
She walks around, watching the shops, listening to witches and wizards and feeling the magic charged surroundings. It’s incredible how an entire shopping district can be hidden from the muggles only by a few wards, she must read about them, she’s curious and shaking with excitement just thinking about all the new and incredible things available to her here.
The discrepancy between one side of the Leaky and the other is shocking and would confuse most eleven years old to no end, if this were the be her first time coming it certainly would too without knowing about it at all, but fifty-five years of memories are pretty useful, she knows what to expect and is anything but a common firstie. She’s never walked the alley before but knows it like the back of her hand… well, maybe not so good considering Voldemort’s memories go until 1981, still, the crooked entrance of Gringotts looks the same and she immediately remembers Tom’s first encounter with the creatures that she’ll have to deal with inside, Goblins.
Tom made the mistake, when taking the Ɠalleons from his vault with Dumbledore, as to copy the headmaster’s short attitude with the creatures. He would later, while reading a book in the Hogwarts library, learn that goblins should be treated with the respect you must give to any person dealing with your money or they will forever-more consider you an obnoxious client that should be treated with the minimum amount of patience and hospitality.
You don’t want to anger your account managers—and you never angered a goblin—because beyond the fact that they manage your currency, goblins also are a warrior race and can easily chop you up while you stand in their land—because Gringotts is sovereign territory—and nobody could as much as throw a sneer their way for it. With a good enough excuse for the DMLE a wizard could end up dead there and nobody would care much.
The many redundant lessons of History of Magic that Tom had with professor Binns taught him, if anything, that another war between wizards and goblins would be in the wizards' disadvantage. The contempt many wizards show to the goblins are as much a sign of their racism as it is a sign of frustration after their latest defeat and their race continuous presence between ‘respectable’ company, much to the wizards wish for it to be otherwise.
Being the insane and paranoid man he became, he never trusted the goblins to take care of his finances and after that first mistake he made, even if he hated it, he’d dealt with the muggles before leaving his possessions in the creature's hands, or just order one of his minions to use their money for the things he needed.
He disliked goblins to the extent of avoiding claiming his vaults for decades until it was completely necessary, not that it helped much even then because shortly after his physical appearance started changing for some reason, and it wasn’t a dark ritual like many people liked to whisper around.
The teller’s call takes her out of her musings and it is her turn.
“Hello sir, I need an inheritance test.”
“And do you have a way to pay Miss…?”
“Henrietta Potter and of course I have money to pay sir.”
“Hmmm.” the goblin grunts and a clawed finger lets her know to wait to one side.
After ten minutes a goblin named Griphook takes her to a door with a plaque that says ‘Geel BlackBlood’ and leaves her waiting again, after fifteen more minutes a crying witch comes out and she is ushered inside.
“Sit Miss Potter.” the goblin says and moves around the things laying on his desk for a while leaving only three left on it, one cream, one blue and one red piece of parchment. Seriously? Parchment? Is her only though while mentally rolling her eyes. And finally, the wrinkled goblin pulls a shiny silver dagger from the drawer to his left.
“The common test,” the goblin grunts and a long clawed finger stops over the cream parchment, “Ɠ5 and three drops of blood. It’ll show the closest blood relations, Guardians and house you belong to. The second level test,” his clawed finger hovers over the blue parchment for a second, “Ɠ10 and seven drops of blood, it’ll show in addition any and all houses that you’re in the right to claim Ladyship once you became of age and any others you may belong.”
“The third level test,” he signals the last parchment, the red one, “Ɠ30 and thirteen drops of blood. It’ll give you a complete assessment of the houses you belong to and their assets, seats or ownership of any organizations of wizard or muggle origin if it’s available, the Head of House will be named, the possible heirs to each house will be named, and a health scan of the one taking the test will be provided. This last test is more commonly taken to make sure the person is under no external influence when they’re about to accept the rings to be named Heir or Lord. A secrecy spell woven into the parchments will protect all the information from being taken forcefully from it—or your mind—once it has been finished revealing everything, as stated by the law.”
“If you wish to claim your heiress rings you will need to be tested with this last one, for security reasons. For any other purposes, the others should suffice. So Miss Potter, which one will you be taking?”
Harrie quickly runs the overwhelming news for a minute in her head before considering her options, her money, and answering.
In the end, she took the first one to make sure she had access to the Potter vault because the money she grabbed from Petunia wasn’t enough for the second test, much less for the third one. The rates of conversion from pounds to galleons are ridiculously high!
Once that's dealt with, and confused with the fact that she has listed two fathers, she tells the goblin to give her the third test and to take the money from her trust vault.
“This is...bad,” Harrie mumbles still staring at the parchment. “Please tell me there’s something that can fix this, I don’t like the idea of having this magic on me,” she asks looking up to the goblin who seems equally upset.
“Indeed Miss Potter-Black, considering the test provided confirmation of claims to many Lordships, I recommend a visit to your account manager, Kranulk GoldFire should be able to provide you with an appropriate course of action to fix your problems.” The goblin makes a motion over one of the desk figurines and a second later the door to the hall opens, another goblin enters waiting for orders, “Take Miss Potter-Black to Kranulk GoldFire.”
“Thank you Mr BlackBlood,” Harrie says and stands up to follow the goblin to her account manager.
Kranulk GoldFire is tall—for a goblin anyway—, has ginger hair, eery grey eyes with black sclera and wears gold clothes. She entered his office and immediately after explaining her situation he called for a healer with a frown that showed how angry he was with the results of her Inheritance Test.
“This isn’t the first time, let me tell you. This man had caused trouble before, Miss Potter-Black.” says the creature with clear disdain directed to Dumbledore, not too long after, a goblin in a white attire enters. “The healer and I will answer any questions you may have, Miss Potter-Black.”
Harrie looks down at the parchment on her hand and opens it once more.
Henrietta Lilith Potter-Black
Born July 31st, 1980
Mother Lillian Jasmine Potter née Evans 1960 - 1981
Father James Charlus Potter 1960 - 1981
Father B.A. Lord Sirius Orion Black 03/11/1959
Muggle Guardian Petunia Dursley née Evans 28/11/1958
Magical Guardian Albus Percival Gulfric Brian Dumbledore 07/07/1881
“I’m confused principally about having two fathers listed here. What does BA stand for? How is this possible?”
“BA is short of Blood Adoption and is an expensive procedure, mostly used by wealthy and/or desperate witches or wizards,” GoldFire explains.
“I believe Sirius Black is gay. That is the term, right?” The healer asks dubiously but in a low soothing voice and, at her nod, he continues, “As the last male heir of the Black family line, it falls in his hands to continue it. In cases such as his, it’s an expected step to follow, undertaking a Blood Adoption, and the Blacks have always been wealthy. The Potters too.”
“Joining both families such as yours, Miss Potter-Black…” starts GoldFire.
“Please, call me Harrie. Miss Potter-Black is such a mouthful.”
The accountant agrees with a nod and continues, “Joining together, two such important and wealthy families gives you and your future children much to work with, with so many resources available, you can be and do whatever you wish. Not that the other bloodlines you belong to aren’t as important,” GoldFire adds pointing at the parchment and the healer agrees with a low humming sound.
The Most Ancient and Noble House of Black
Lord Sirius Orion Black 03/11/1959
Heirs : Bartemius Crouch,
Billius Weasley , William Weasley , Arthur Weasley , Iola Hitchens née Black , Andromeda Tonks née Black , Bellatrix Lestrange née Black , Frank Longbottom , Narcissa Malfoy née Black, Asmund Weasley , Bartemius Crouch , William Arthur Weasley , Nymphadora Tonks , Charles Weasley , Percival Ignatius Weasley , Fred Weasley , George Weasley , Ronald Billius Weasley , Draconus Lucien Malfoy, Neville Longbottom , Henrietta Lilith Potter-Black , Ginevra Molly Weasley
* More information only available with the Family Grimoire.
“Crouch, Malfoy, Weasley, Longbottom… Are all these people related to me?” Harrie asks surprised.
“Yes Harrie, but some, only by marriage. The house Black always had many daughters.”
“Why are some names crossed?”
After perusing the list for a moment he answers, “Because the females who married into those lines were cast out of the Black family. Andromeda Black married a muggle if I remember right, the Longbottoms and Weasleys are too light in the first case or Blood traitors in the case of the second family,” watching Harrie’s confusion he adds, “The Weasleys broke a binding contract of marriage with the Malfoy family some generations ago and later didn’t present for the duel of honor called by the then Lord Malfoy. Since then they’ve been called Blood traitors.”
“Oh! Ok then.” How come Tom had no knowledge about this? Malfoys have always been his most avid supporters… “All of these people are possible heirs then?”
“Actually, you’re the only option, Harrie. The Blood Adoption of the last male from the principal branch of the family grants you that. Unless you die without heirs, the title of Lord passes then to… Narcissa or Daconus Malfoy.”
The Ancient House of Evans
Lord Alan Lewis Evans (1682 - 1799)
Petunia Iris Dursley née Evans, Dudley Dursley, Henrietta Lilith Potter-Black
Assets: Vault N°343 + Properties + Grimoire
“What about the Evans family? I thought my mother was muggle-born. This one also shows more information than the other one.”
“The family moved to America on the late 1700s, as the title of Lord is only granted here in the UK, no one claimed it until now. And, as sole heir, all information is readily available for you to see. The Blacks are the exception, they put a block on their family information, as a safety mechanism.”
“And since my name is the only one that appears then…”
“No cadet branches are in existence. You’re the last Evans alive.”
and Noble House of Gaunt
Lord Tom Marvolo Riddle 31/12/1926
Petunia Iris Dursley née Evans, Daryus Liam Boot, Terrence Boot, Lachlan Potter, Dudley Dursley, Henrietta Lilith Potter-Black
Assets: * More information only available with the Family Grimoire.
“Wait, I just noticed... What the… Aunt Petunia and Dudley… What are their names doing here?!”
“I’m sorry Harrie, you will have to look through that family’s Grimoire and search the family tree at the back of it to know how they’re related to the Gaunts.”
“But, does this means they’re magicals then?”
“If they don’t know about the magical world, they’re more likely Squibs then.”
“Children with magical parents that lack the same magical talent. But not to be confused with muggles, Squibs still have some latent magic, even if is little to nothing,” supplies the healer and her extra set of memories freshen up.
The Most Ancient
and Noble House of Gryffindor
Lady Geraldine Prudence Potter née Gryffindor (1891 - 1960)
Heirs: Lachlan Potter, Henrietta Lilith Potter-Black
Assets: Vault N°2, Nº11 + 3 Properties + Grimoire
“The next is… Gryffindor. Do you know anything about this Lachlan Potter?”
“Give me a moment. I have a Potter tree here,” GoldFire searches through his shelves while mumbling. “Lachlan Potter, born 1946, son of Fleamont Potter and Euphemia Potter nèe Clarke... Ah, yes! I remember now, he’s living in America, accepted a position into the MACUSA as a member of the local Department of Magical Law enforcement. He’s your uncle, your grandfather and his father were brothers. He left for America shortly after his parents died of some sickness on the late 1960s. He was always a respectful customer.”
“I have an uncle…” Harrie whispers in a wobbly voice. Should she be excited about this? She doesn’t know, but the warm on her stomach settles anyway without asking for permission.
The Most Ancient and Noble House of Peverell
Lady Iolanthe Potter née Peverell (1254 - 1318)
* Heirs *:
Tom Marvolo Riddle, Petunia Iris Dursley née Evans, Daryus Liam Boot, Terrence Boot, Lachlan Potter, Dudley Dursley, Henrietta Lilith Potter-Black
Assets: Vault N°13, Nº14, Nº 36 + Property + Grimoire
GoldFire clears his throat, calling back Harrie to the present. “House Peverell, as you can see, is special. The little stars mean that for anyone to claim the family titles, they must fulfil certain requirements.”
“And I do? My name is the only one not crossed…”
“You certainly do, you have the necromantic ability, blocked, but it’s there.” GoldFire points at the end of the parchment and the healer growls ‘How could anyone… Real Necromancers are a blessing! It’s a gift! Death curse that man!’
The Most Ancient and Noble House of Potter
Lord James Charlus Potter (1960 - 1981)
Heirs: Lucile Potter, Lev Potter, Lachlan Potter, Mikhail Potter, Alejandro Potter, Hideaki Ookumo, Demyan Potter, Vasily Potter, Henrietta Lilith Potter-Black, Emilia Potter
Assets: Vault N°59, Nº783, Nº661, Nº687 + Properties + Grimoire
Harrie ignores the aggravated healer and asks, “So, I have even more family…”
“Yes, let me see,” Kranulk peruses the family tree once more, “Hmm yes. Lucile Potter, born in 1902. I’m sorry, I wasn’t the Potters accountant at the beginning of the century so I don’t really know about her." After a pause he continues, "And also all of them belong to cadet branches unlike Lachlan, they’re descendants from members of the Potters that left the UK long ago. If the late Lord Potter kept contact with any of them, then you should be able to find more information about their whereabouts in the family Grimoire.”
The Most Ancient and Noble House of Ravenclaw
Lord Tom Marvolo Riddle 31/12/1926
Petunia Iris Dursley née Evans, Daryus Liam Boot, Terrence Boot, Lachlan Potter, Dudley Dursley, Henrietta Lilith Potter-Black
Assets: * More information only available with the Family Grimoire.
The Most Ancient
and Noble House of Slytherin
Lord Tom Marvolo Riddle 31/12/1926
* Heirs *:
Petunia Iris Dursley née Evans, Daryus Liam Boot, Terrence Boot, Lachlan Potter, Dudley Dursley, Henrietta Lilith Potter-Black
Assets: * More information only available with the Family Grimoire.
“Ok, I’ll read that Grimoire too, later. Now… Ravenclaw. And Slytherin. Two more Hogwarts founders?!” she lets a ‘Wow’ get out and the two goblins laugh.
“As you can notice, those two, alongside The Ancient House of Gaunt, already have Lord Riddle appointed. Otherwise, you could’ve applied for the Lordship in the future. And like The Most Ancient and Noble House of Peverell, the Slytherin has a special requirement needed to gain access to its titles. In this case, two abilities are indispensable, Parseltongue and Parselmagic. You may be strong and have the ability to cast Parselmagic, but if you’re unable to speak Parsel then it's of no use; likewise, if you’re able to speak the language but aren’t strong enough then you can’t cast Parselmagic; an both are indispensable at the moment of aiming to become Heir or Lord of house Slytherin,” he then sits back and the healer takes the lead.
“Now comes my part then,” the healer says excitedly. “As you can see, you have many magical gifts,” he points at the parchment in the desk.
Harrie reads them once more, some of these things she doesn’t understand.
Inherited Family Traits
• Black Madness • Potioner • Bigger Magical Core • Healing Abilities
• Necromancer • Natural Occlumens • Parseltongue • Parselmagic
“Is the Black Madness as bad as it sounds?” Harrie asks, always curious.
The healer nods sadly, “In part, it is. The thing is, it doesn’t have to be, but the benefits blind some people and they get consumed into the blinding rage, losing themselves into it. A good example of this is Bellatrix Lestrange nèe Black.”
Harrie nods, the extra set of memories have a lot of Bella on them. “And the Necromancer trait?”
“The Peverells are the only recorded, ever, to have acquired this ability in the UK. There are others around the world, capable of channelling Death’s magic, but few exist to this day or hide in fear of showing themselves. The stigma of being a Dark witch is going to be hard to deal with if you’re discovered to have this talent, I’m afraid.”
“Ok. And these issues I have on my Health Scan, can you do something about them?” Harrie asks, excited to get rid of the many things Dumbledore put on her.
The healer grabs the parchment, murmuring under his breath while reading the diagnosis.
Bad Healed Bones: Left clavicle, Left anterior surface of right ulna, Right trapezoid, Left fibula, 12th left rib
“Those will have to be re-broken and healed properly.” Harrie winces.
Blood Ward: 11/03/1981; 25% magical siphoning redirection to Blood Ward at N°4 Privet Drive, Surrey, England
“Blood wards,” the goblin roll his eyes. “Of all the stupid things…” he raises his head and states, “You just say loudly that the place isn’t your home in a clear voice to the people living there and the wards will fall right off. But be careful, if Dumbledore tied a link to them, he’ll be notified the exact moment this happens. Also, if you stray from the place for more than a year, they’ll fall by themselves,” he warns grimly and Harrie nods.
Compulsions: 11/03/1981; Trust Albus Percival Wulfric Brian Dumbledore (Broken), Trust light witches/wizards, Trust authority figures (Broken), Hate dark witches/wizards (Broken)
“Well, those are of no use anymore, nice job girl. The only one still intact is ‘Trust light witches/wizards’ and it’ll take no time at all for me to get rid of it,” he says sure of himself.
Core Block: 11/03/1981; 50% magical siphoning redirection to Albus Percival Wulfric Brian Dumbledore.
“ This is disgusting. If you were anyone else, you’d be long dead. Stupid old goat,” the tone of voice of the healer for this part of the scan is so full of hate for Dumbledore that Harrie looks at him with wide eyes and GoldFire laughs throatily.
The core block sounded more like Dumbledore being a vampire and leeching her magic out of her instead of her blood, that gave her the creeps. That is the thing the healer is more worried about. Not that there is a problem taking care of it, but it is going to create a bigger influx of magic in her body than she is used to and her body will need a week of resting which the Dursleys will abuse to beat her again while she finds herself unable to use magic.
Or she could risk using her magic and blowing up the Dursleys… alongside the house and probably the neighbourhood too. The healer gave her a bloodthirsty grin when she showed appreciative at the idea of blowing up the muggles. She needs to learn to grin like that.
She especially enjoyed the fact that taking the block away would cause a backlash to the old man. After ten years of her magic going to him and making it stop suddenly, it will make him tired at first and then in a constant slow process, it will kill him, in a few years. His body will collapse for the lack of magical energy feed to it.
Cursed Scar: 31/08/1981; Tom Marvolo Riddle Horcrux
The healer snorts “Stupid humans. Death comes for us all. No matter how long it takes.”
Inherited Abilities: 11/03/1981; 100% Block Potioner, Necromancer, Occlumens (Broken), Parselmagic (Broken), Parseltongue (Broken)
A tick on the goblin’s right eye amuses Harrie. “All these unnecessary blocks…” he sighs tiredly, “I’m not going to lie, it’s gonna hurt to break them,” he tells Harrie with a concerned look
“I’m no stranger to pain,” she answers seriously but instead of looking reassured, the goblin gets even angrier.
The Necromancer abilities she inherited from her Peverell ancestors will cause her to talk only in Death’s language for a month so she asks to let the block be until next summer when she won’t need to interact with others too much and no one will notice anything weird. It will withhold the claim of her Peverell heiress ring but is something necessary.
The Potioner ability from her mother's line will make her able to understand easily the properties and reactions of ingredients used and other things related to potion making, it sounded very much like cooking for her and considering that was one of the very few things she didn’t mind doing at the Dursleys she was excited about learning the subject at Hogwarts. Tom was a good brewer himself, but his acquired knowledge was focused on dark and long forgotten potions, mostly illegal ones, that will cause her unnecessary problems if anyone ever discovers that she has knowledge about them.
Loyalty Potion: 11/03/1981; Albus Percival Wulfric Brian Dumbledore
“Unbelievable this still works.”
Obliviations: 1 year old, 3 years old (Partially Unveiled), 7 years old (Unveiled), 10 years old (Unveiled)
“The memories can be fixed by occlumency, so later, you should keep ordering your mind as you’ve been doing,” the healer states simply.
Underdeveloped Muscles: Extreme malnutrition from 1982 until 1988
“You will need to ingest nutrient potions for a month, every morning, after a substantial breakfast and every night, after an equally substantial dinner. You can buy those here at Gringotts if you so wish.”
* Unable to receive control over any assets until a Complete Purifying Ritual is executed *
“That’s a given. First thing we’re gonna do. It won’t do a thing to the Horcrux, but that is beyond anyone's abilities. Beware, he’ll be able to contact you and feel where you are all the time. But, unless you feel like dying, I know of no way to get rid of it.”
“I don’t mind, actually,” after all the benefits that that shard of Tom’s soul provided her, it would be plain hypocritical to want to get rid of it.
“We’ll be going then, Kranulk,” the healer vows and walks out of the room.
“I’ll be waiting when you’re finished,” Kranulk tells them.
The healer takes her to a chamber carved into rock and chants while moving in a circle around her for hours. Gobbledigook is a weird language, if it weren’t for Tom’s memories she would’ve thought the healer is growling at her.
After three hours with the healer, she left and had lunch in one of the side alleys of Diagon and went back to finish things with GoldFire. The goblin had ready eight boxes over the desk waiting for her. The heiress ring for Potter was the only one she put on, the rest went to a chain around her neck after the family magic accepted her as the Heiress. The soft band of gold with a red gem resized after she put it on and the family magic hugged her frame in a warm embrace.
“Very well, now; Dumbledore decided to leave the choice to me about the way the Potter fortune should be invested and only focused on getting the paperwork to become the proxy for the seats at the Wizengamot. Do you wish to change that?”
“Hmm I don’t really know much about investments so I’ll leave it in your capable hands, but a summary of the things that you change would be appreciated, I’m gonna apply to learn about this things. The Wizengamot seats… hmm… let's leave him with those, I don’t want him paying more attention than necessary to me until I’m capable of making decisions without the need of his approval as my guardian,” the goblin nodded to her wise choice. “Hmm, about the Grimoire, how can I access it?”
“The Potter Grimoire should be on the Family Vault, but since the ring accepted you, you just need to put a drop of blood to call for it and magic will take care of the rest.”
“I’ll try looking on the Grimoire tonight then. Also, about the other accounts...”
“About that, a meeting will be arranged. The other accountants will be present and introduced to you then. An owl should reach you tomorrow with the date and time, this is the usual way we handle things in case of many vaults handled by one person unless you wish to change anything.”
“That’s fine, I was planning on staying on the alley for the week since I can’t use my magic annnd… wait, would it cause a problem if I try to summon the Grimoire while I’m recovering from the ritual?”
The healer warned her not to use magic until it settled after a week, the last thing she wants right now is to cause some kind of explosion in the middle of the alley and call for unwanted attention on her.
“The summoning is made with the magic from your blood and the magic from the ring so it should be, by all means, safe. If you wish to rent a place, Gringotts can offer you accommodations. Here.”
He shows her a pamphlet about an apartment, in the basement of Florean Fortescue, that’s owned by Gringotts and commonly houses their Curse Breakers who are called from other countries; the place has a bedroom, a little kitchenette with a table for two and the bathroom, not much but enough for her alone for the week. The best of the place are the wards, anti-apparition, anti-portkey, anti-theft, intention-based wards that would throw out anyone with intentions of attacking her and the door would be keyed to her magical signature for a small fee is she asked. Which she will.
“I like it, take the money from the vault Mr GoldFire.”
“Sign the lease please and Kranulk is fine, Harrie.” They smiled to each other, “Here is your key,” an old silver key was passed along. “Push magic on it when you open the door and it will key into your magical signature, carefully of course, we don’t want the building to blow up. At the end of the week bring it back or send it with an owl.”
“Thanks. Now, about this man, Sirius Black. Can you tell me what you know about him?”
“Sirius Black was imprisoned four days after Halloween, he’s a prisoner in the most secured area of Azkaban. He was put there when the Aurors found him surrounded by the bodies of muggles in the middle of a road. Witnesses recalled when being questioned, that a bald and fat man called him the ‘responsible for Lilly’s and James’ dead’ and then an explosion occurred. He’s the alleged murderer of Peter Pettigrew, 12 muggles, and right-hand man of the Dark Lord.”
“Thank you Kranulk. But how is that he’s a criminal and still listed as the Lord of the House? Isn’t there a law against something like that?”
“Black never received a trial, as the records of such thing were never provided to Gringotts.”
“What!? They imprisoned a man without questioning him or making sure he’s guilty?” She asks with disbelief clear in her voice.
“They found him in the streets of muggle London, screaming and laughing maniacally, not a very innocent sight for most. I agree that the wizards should have questioned him, but they never make much sense to us goblins,” Kranulk shrugs uninterested.
“Are you a hundred percent sure about this?”
“Each record of every trial is put on a special chamber on the Department of All Magical Records at the Ministry, when the record is put on the chamber a copy automatically appears on a twin chamber here at Gringotts.”
“Are there any Private Investigators service that you know about and I can hire?”
“Of course, we can contact them if you wish to keep your identity a secret…”
“Yes, please. And make sure they aren’t able to hide anything. If Black never received a trial and he’s innocent then the hands involved in it will try to cover their actions,” and Harrie knows he’s innocent.
The goblin gives her an evil grin, “They will be put under a bow of confidentiality and truthfulness.”
“Let’s talk about the payment then…”
Harrie left the building with lots of things to think about and walked to her temporal apartment. To the left of the ice-cream parlour where the stairs leading down to the apartment downstairs.
Once inside she sits on her bed with a cone of strawberry ice-cream relaxing and enjoying the flavour. When she’s done she pricks her finger with a knife from the kitchen and watches as the drop of blood falls on top of the ring and it flashes gold for a second, a blink later and a book floats in front of her outstretched hand. The brown leather is carved and has an intricate design of vines and leaves and in the middle in bold letters says ‘Potter’, the Grimoire is way too BIG for her to hold on her hands so with great care she puts it on the bed to peruse its contents.
On the entire first page is the image of a coat of arms and family motto.
The intricate design of the crest calls her attention while passing a finger over the image, but the family motto is what gains her attention the most. Planning on getting a dictionary on latin soon she passes the page after a last appreciative look, on the next yellow-ish page and with a spidery crawl, is written ‘1188 Linfred of Stinchcombe 1391’ followed by the life-story of her ancestor who was the first ever to be known as a Potter.
Linfred gained the name of ‘The Potterer’ by the many people who visited him and saw the man preparing potions over his pot, time later the name changed to just Potter. He married Bietriz Frontier, who followed him all the way from France and together had seven children starting like this the Potter family a good thousand years ago.
Like this, the Grimoire continued. The life-story of every new Potter added as they were born and magically updated.
In just a few hours Harrie’s world, and family, grew a lot.
She found Lucile Potter, who lives in India and apparently can talk to snakes like Harrie and she’s 89 years old!
There is also Lev Potter, a Potions Master from Russia. He’s married to Aleandra Ivashchenkov and has a son. The stellar trainer for newcomers to the Dueling Tournaments, Mikhail Potter, is married to Ekatherina Fedkin and they have two sons, Demyan and Vasily Potter, who are just three years older than her and study at the renown school of Durmstrang.
In Argentina live even more family members, Alejandro Potter and Luciana Ramos with their daughter Emilia Potter. Apparently, he’s a famous herbologist in South-America because of his great collection of flora, magical and muggle.
Hideaki Ookumo from Japan belongs also to the Potter family because his mother was a Potter. He works at the Japanese Ministry as a member of the Jury at the Justice Chamber in charge of upholding the law and giving trials to people, much like the Wizengamot.
And finally, Lachlan Potter from America, who Kranulk already told her about.
Once Harrie stops marvelling at the fact that she actually has more family than Petunia and her lot, Harrie thinks ‘If they’re my family too, then why did they never sent a letter or tried talking to me?’
Much less enthusiastic, and with her head full of new things to rummage on, Harrie goes to sleep.
August 1st, 1991
The next morning she’s sitting on the corner of the Cauldron and eating breakfast when an owl lands next to her with a letter from Gringotts on her beak, August the second, the next day, would be the meeting with all of her accountants and at the end she’ll receive the file about the PI Kranulk contracted for her investigation about her adoptive father.
She finishes her breakfast, takes her nutrient potions, pays Tom and leaves for the alley.
The first place she visits is a hidden trunk maker in a dark corner of knockturn, she went there especially because the man makes them with the specifications of his customers and she wants something special that she knows is possible thanks to the extra set of memories.
The window of the shop had a sad looking black trunk, but the inside held a potions lab on display. She opens the door and a bell rings. Behind the counter, a ragged man in mustard and black robes looks her up curiously.
“Hello missy, are you lost?” Asks the man in a raspy voice while he puts down the newspaper in his hands.
“No Mr Kent, I’m here for a trunk.” She smiles internally at the man’s surprise. Tom used to buy from him and was probably one of the few who knew the man’s name considering the old guy was a hermit that dislikes most people, but Tom was a charmer and got into his good graces by running a few errands for him in his youth.
“Where did you hear that name from, missy? I don’t think we’ve met,” he narrows his eyes at her.
“We haven’t. But you knew my friend, Tom Riddle rings any bells?”
The man eyes widen in surprise “Haven’t heard about the lad in a while. How is he?”
“I don’t know I’m afraid. He had an accident, you see, so he had to leave and I haven’t heard from him since.”
“Well poor lad, he was always a good help here, let him know when he shows that if he needs anything he only needs to ask.”
The man warmly talking about the Dark Lord almost made her burst out laughing in the middle of the shop, almost, it was still the weirdest thing to hear. “Of course Mr Kent, now, about my trunk...”
“Right, right, here look at the pamphlet.”
A dragon hide black trunk with gold unions and five compartments—library, apartment, potions station, spell-resistant duelling chamber all secured with wards and a blood-lock, the last one was a common space for things she didn’t mind showing if someone ever needed to see inside of it and only warded by a normal lock & key—was her choice. He would work on it and have it ready after lunch so she left for the next thing on her to-do list.
Madam Malkin's was the recommended place to shop for the school uniform, but in the way out of knockturn, a place called Twilfit&Tattings called her attention because of the clothes in the exhibition window. She entered and instead of the dark and mysterious faces that littered the alley, the inside was surprisingly tidy and the attendant was an elegant woman in a long forest dress with a smile on her face.
“Hello dear, what do you need?”
“The Hogwarts usual, please?”
She stood still while the woman took her measures, parchment and quill flying around taking notes. She looks around the place and notices the mannequins around the place with lots of different fabrics wrapped around them in ingenious and beautiful arranges.
“So, first year?” the seamstress asks and Harrie nods yes, the woman smiles. “Are you nervous? I remember my first year and it always brings a smile to my face. You will be amazed by the school, is the most beautiful sight out there.”
“I am, a bit, I grew up with my mum’s sister and her family and yesterday was the first time I’ve ever heard about Hogwarts. They never mentioned mum and dad were a witch and a wizard.”
“Oh, you poor dear. Did they die in the last war? Lots of kids suffered the same, but all I know had at least one magical relative, thankfully. Arms down dear.”
“Petunia always said they died in a car crash because they were drunkards, but she lied because she was always jealous of mum. They were actually killed by Voldemort.”
A gasp leaves the woman's lips, “Don’t say his name!” she admonishes.
“Hum, why?” Harrie asks turning to look at the seamstress with surprise.
“We don’t say You-Know-Who’s name, darling. Bad things happen.” The woman shivers.
“Put your hands on your hips...there, like that...ok, don’t move. So your aunt lied to you?” The conversation starts over, a bit awkwardly.
“That’s what she does. She and her family are always lying, even to themselves.” The woman finishes and walks to her counter to take some more notes and faintly hears Harrie mumbling “They like to think they’re normal people and call me a freak when the only freaks are really them.”
Harrie walks to the counter and grabs the book with the models of clothing available and while looking at it misses the worried glance the lady sends her way.
“I want some of the clothes from here too,” she says while passing the pages.
“Of course deary. Come here so I can make a list of everything you want.”
Finishing her lunch, Harrie walks into knockturn to fetch her trunk. Mr Kent proudly presented the final product to her and showed how everything worked, explaining how to activate the wards in the duelling room, showing her around her apartment, teaching her to put the passwords to the different compartments and the way to use the directory book from the library compartment.
She left and wandered to Borgin&Burkes, where Tom used to work for a couple of years after Hogwarts. The creation of the, until then two, Horcruxes surely made a mess of the guy because with his genius and contacts he could have easily entered in the ministry and gained a good position but didn’t for some unfathomable reason.
In the back of the dusty shop, she found a Hand of Glory that she recognized from one she saw in Tom’s memories and grabbed the thing and took it to the counter. While paying for the hand she notices the vanishing cabinet to her left, the cabinet that Tom took the other half into Hogwarts.
“What is that cabinet for?” She asks making it look like she was barely interested when in reality she is just dying to take it with her.
“That’s an old thin’, Ɠ500 ’s the price.”
“Surely you’re joking. That old, dusty thing?”
“Does it do anything for such a high price?”
“Makes things vanish?”
“So...it’s some kind of trash cabinet?”
“No, it’s a vanishing cabinet.”
“Right, I still don’t see were the five hundred are supposed to cover it...”
“I’ll sell it for Ɠ450,” the man grumbles.
“That’s still… I mean, look at that thing, it only vanishes things. You can do that with a movement of a wand!”
“Fine! Ɠ400, no less girl.” he lowers the price again suffering for it.
“Are you kidding me? That’s not worth more than Ɠ200 and I’m risking it! Maybe I’ll paint it so it won’t look so hideous.”
“No way! Are you trying to rob me? If you’re going to waste my time then go away, lass.”
“Mr Borgin, be more truthful, how long has that thing been there? The dust is practically permanently plastered to it. And for how long do you think it will still be there if you don’t sell it to me? At least I like the designs of the carvings on the wood...”
“Ok, maybe Ɠ250, but not a sickle more.”
“Grrr, fine...” he’s clearly irked but considering that Tom left the dusty thing there, fifty years ago, and it didn’t cost Borgin a knut then it is still a good deal for the greedy man and Harrie doesn’t feel bad paying only half of the actual price. The actual price if the set where complete.
The trunk now has the vanishing cabinet in the room of her apartment and the hand beside it, beyond that it is bare so maybe some furniture is in order, also some books now are taking place in her library compartment. Laws seem to be a good thing to read about when you’re entering a new society which is isolated and hidden from the one you come from. Tom knew lots about politics and laws and economy, but, from ten years ago. She also bought some books about necromancy, Borgin looked weirdly at her because of them, she planned on reading about the thing her ancestors were so known for in the past. She also has books about dark creatures, one especially about vampires and their court, the last edition of the Black Market pamphlet that Tom used to always keep updated on as not to lose a good opportunity, a book on wards which seems really interesting, and finally one about occlumency and legilimency.
Her walk is suddenly halted when a door to her right opens and a woman in a red dress throws a little guy barely over his twenty outside, dusting her hands as she looks down at him.
“Next time you think of making a mess of MY pub think twice lad or I won’t be so lenient. Now get the hell out of my sight!”
The guy had no enough amount of legs to move quickly out of there.
“Well look at you,” a slender finger with a perfectly manicured nail raises Harrie's chin and sparkling ruby eyes meet hers, “A little thing like you should be more careful running around alone on this side of the alley.”
She pushes the woman away, “I may be little but don’t doubt it, I can take care of myself. I’ve been doing just fine in the last few years.”
“Feisty. Good, a little lady can’t ever be careful enough,” the woman turns around and waves for Harrie to follow. “Come, I’ll invite you some tea and cake. Meanwhile, I may teach you some lessons every little girl should know, like how to hide better that scar of yours in a dangerous place like this.”
The woman sauntered into the building without waiting for her, in the reflection of the door’s glass she notices her crooked hat that revealed her scar. Damn it all. She harrumphs and berates herself for letting her guard down, but in the end, opens the door and enters the pub that smells of tobacco and...copper?
She stops dead on her tracks and takes a look around her slowly, noticing with dread that many of the conversations and eyes are now fixed on her. Double damn, vampires... Good thing she got that chain with protective enchantments from Kranulk.
“Well, what are you waiting for?” Asks the same woman from behind the counter at the back of the place, in front of her a cup of tea and a piece of cake awaits for Harrie, “The tea is getting cold, come on.”
She sits in the only stool available, where the tea lays. A man sits to her right, dirty blond hair and old outdated robes, staring at her. To her left, a lady in a beautiful golden gown and piercing bloody eyes drinks from a cup with something red on it, most probably blood, Harrie hides a shiver and pointedly ignores them.
She takes the cup of tea on her hand, slowly moving it up to her lips, the fingers from her right hand touching the border as if to support it and she feels relieved when the Potter ring doesn’t react to whatever it is in it. She drinks it and makes a hum of appreciation, it tastes sweet and like berries, the red tint of it worried her for a second.
“Nice, what it is?”
“I like it.”
And just like that, all around her, the vamps go back to their own things. Including the one at her sides.
“So, you seem to think you know who I am?” She watches the woman gave her a deadpan look.
“Henrietta Potter, everyone knows or at least have heard about you.”
She pouts then and the woman at her side laughs softly, “Oh she’s cute,” and completely ignores her glare.
“Just Harrie’s fine. And you are?”
“Carmilla Sanguina, but everyone calls me Red.” She smiles and points to the woman to her side, “This is my sister, Lizbeth. And this ruffian here-” she points to the guy to her right, “-is my dear in-law.”
“Rolph Zwer, un bach...” he says on a thick accent.
That was...welsh, right? Huh, the guy must be really old. “’N glws i gwrdd â chi,” she greets him in the same language much to the surprise of all in hearing range, the guy laughs and she smirks satisfied. Thanks again, Tom.
“Look at that, you’re a bag of surprises,” Carmilla laughs
“You always find the most interesting ones, sis,” Lizbeth shares a smile with them.
“So Harrie, what were you doing around here?” Carmilla asks, refilling her cup, while Harrie eats the strawberry cake.
Carmilla stood at the door waving at her two hours later as she walks away with the promise to visit again. The pub of vampires was surprisingly welcoming of her, one would think that they would be more interested in drinking her blood than asking her if she had any talents hidden that let her defeat the Dark Lord while still in diapers. It was an interesting evening.
She grabbed the clothes from Madam Dumont at Twilfit’s and went to Diagon to buy the rest of the things she needed. The starting kit for fisties at the apothecary was the first thing to make it into her trunk, then stacks of parchment and pretty quills with her favourite being a shiny black one from a raven, and finally the books.
Flourish & Blotts selection was obviously oriented to light witches and wizards. She grabbed the first year books and two more, Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them because magical creatures intrigued her and the third-year book about runes based on the Old Futhark, and with that left for Obscurus Books at the entrance of the alley near the Leaky. The shop wasn’t as packed as Flourish but had a more ample variety of books, purebloods or muggle-borns writers were mixed unlike before, dark arts books—the legal ones anyway, that are only about theory only—are piled around, the place also has second-hand books really cheap in the back and in the mix were some questionable things like the book of A Hundred Ways to Hide Your Tracks or some others obviously muggle like the Art of War both of which she kept for herself.
Once done with the things she needed she had dinner at the Cauldron, drinking her potion at the end, and went back to the apartment.
August 2nd, 1991
Breakfast, potions, Gringotts, and once again Harrie walks the long halls of the bank, guided by a young goblin to the meeting room. When she enters, a group of eight different goblins are waiting for her, Kranulk then presents all of them to Harrie.
“The more pressing matter at the moment would be the Ravenclaw castle were the elves are dying. Taking into consideration that you’re the heiress and Lord Riddle is… unavailable at the moment, I think that you can try and call for them Miss Potter-Black,” said one of the goblins to her while moving the pages from the book in his hand. “These are the names of the elves still alive.”
She grabs the parchment he held for her and reads before making a question, “Did you let him know that the elves were dying or did this started after he disappearance?”
“The elves started dying three years ago and Lord Riddle’s been lost for more than that...”
“Since the night of October 31st, he’s Voldemort, I know.” The goblin looks relieved that she has no other thing to add to that, “So I just call them, put my hand on their heads and ask for their services?”
“Yes, Miss Potter-Black.”
“Ok. Let’s do this.”
11 house elves from Ravenclaw castle bonded to her, they were happy to be once more connected to the family magic and relieved that they wouldn’t die.
Then she agrees with another globin on tearing down the shack that lies on Little Hangleton and belongs to the Slytherin line, after she passes by and collects the Horcrux hidden there, of course, the place will become a breeding place for snakes because the zone is infested with all kind of them, they’ll be milked of their venom to sell. Voldemort’s dislike of goblins is a real set back to the management of his states but at least they seem to tolerate her just fine.
Also she learned that the magical village of Hogsmeade outside of Hogwarts and the village of Godric’s Hollow belongs to her by way of the Gryffindor line, the people living there rented the place for years and she has a lot of money nestled in the Gryffindor vault thanks to that, the greedy goblins fretted at the mouth when the one in charge of that account resumed the balance of each year. Godric’s Hollow holds a few dozens of houses that creates a high amount of profit regularly.
For hundreds of years, nobody was able to claim the vaults or Lordship because of a clause on Godric’s will that roughly translates from old English as: “Any heir trying to gain access to the family magic or assets must have the support of at least one member of the houses Ravenclaw and/or Hufflepuff and/or Slytherin; if this condition is archived then they may hold the Heir ring; only then, and if the magic of the ring accepts them, they may become—once of age—Head of the Most Ancient and Noble House of Gryffindor.”
Done with the many inquiries they needed to solve, the goblins left Kranulk’s office and Harrie was presented with the file of one Cain Jones, an American man in his thirties that didn’t have a problem with the bows of secrecy and truthfulness, he came to the UK trying to get away from the MACUSA who discovered his muggle wife and to say they didn’t like it would be an understatement. Breaking Rappaport’s Law is a serious crime over the pond.
When Harrie left, she had a headache, numbers dancing in her mind in a jumbled mess and thoughts running rampant in a hundred different directions all at the same time.
Chapter 2: Extra Nº1, Albus Dumbledore
I'm putting a little warning here as there are things on this chapter that may shock some people.
If you like Dumbledore or Grindelwald and think one or both of them are paragons of virtue, then I don't recommend you read this only to feel offended by their actions, this is your chance to skip this chapter altogether and avoid a disgust.
I know some of the things I wrote about aren't real, I also know I'm making Albus act and think differently than in the books, movies, etc, but that is called character development and since this is my story I can make them dance Hip Hop or know karate if I feel like it, deal with it.
Also, as the name of the chapter says, this is a short extra. Mostly to give you, the readers, an idea of what is happening with the other characters on the story.
I personally hate the change of POVs and telling 5 times the same thing but with little changes, like something one character may have thought or done that isn't pointed otherwise, isn't my idea of fun so I'm not doing it.
And I mean no offense to writers who do this. I've read stories like that and like them, I just don't want to do it myself.
So, with nothing else to add, enjoy! :)
Albus sits on his office, many parchments stacked on the surroundings hang precariously, but he can hardly worry about them right now because he is happy that the year arrived. Henrietta Potter will soon be entering the magical world once more and his plans can be put in motion, finally.
Fawkes trills from his perch, his burning getting closer if his feathers are anything to go by, the once shining plumage looks dull and scarce, even his trill sounds sad and lacks the usual warmth in it.
“Isn’t it marvelous Fawkes?” Albus asks the bird, poping a lemon drop on his mouth and appreciating the bittersweet taste, “Harrie will soon be here. In no time at all, things will start again and then… then the Wizarding World will be reminded why I am to be respected when I save their lives once more.”
He looks down at the newspaper in front of him with distaste, news about the last Wizengamot session on it and a picture with his retreating back wide in the middle, and obviously written by no other than Rita Skeeter. That woman is such a pain on his side… but no matter, she’ll be getting her due soon enough.
“All of them will remember their place...”
He made a lot of sacrifices on his long life to accept the way he’s been treated daily by the reporter and many more witches and wizards who are less worthy than the dirt lining his shoes.
He had to forget about his year-round-trip of the world, that he more than deserved after working so hard and finishing his studies with the best scores in decades and a mastery on Defense to boot, all because of his sister; the girl had to lose her mind and kill their mother at the worst of times!
He left Hogwarts and instead of preparing a bag with his things to travel abroad, he had to do lots of paperwork and prepare a funeral, staying at boring Godric’s Hollow another year. He can at least give his mother the acknowledgment she deserves for working so well in hiding his sister’s Obscurus status for so many years, hiding that was hard and the nosy neighbors made it even more difficult. Not that Abeforth helped either.
At least he got to meet Gellert while he stayed at home that year, that was the only good thing that happened to him in a long while. They had a good time together for some months. Albus never had so much fun or felt challenged by someone like that before; or after. But, like everything else, his family ruined that too.
Gellert and Albus were having a nice and stimulating discussion about the magical theory behind the Imperius curse and the possible uses for the spell when Abeforth arrived and started complaining and throwing accusations at his beloved.
Why would Albus want to spend any time with their crazy sister? She was barely capable of functioning with her fear of everything. Besides, Abe is there for her all the time. Albus never understood how his brother could hold so much love for the useless girl. If she couldn’t go out and make a name for herself, making the Dumbledores gain renown once more, why should they bother with her? She was useless and unimportant and Albus had many plans for his life that didn’t include her worthless self hindering his goals.
But, as the saying goes, if something can go wrong it will. Abe and Gellert started fighting while Albus tried to make his brother see reason without luck and then Arianna made an appearance, worsening everything with her death. Gellert runs away because the last thing he needed was the Aurors arresting him, after getting expelled from Drumstrang it would be bad for their plans. Meanwhile, Abe leaves to bury Arianna and vows to never talk with Albus again after he let ‘the murderer’ go away. On the funeral, his bother even attacks and insults him! It wasn’t his fault that the stupid girl walked into her own death.
Albus was disappointed by Abe’s actions and words, but later his brother became a lame bartender at the Hogshead, throwing away all his potential, so all in all Albus feels grateful that Abe cut all ties with him so soon on their lives and like this avoiding been connected with him when the name Dumbledore is mentioned in the future.
After that, Albus had to conform himself with sending and receiving letters, it was the only way to contact Gellert as his love traveled trying to accomplish their dreams and Albus himself gains a Transfiguration and Alchemy Mastery under the tutelage of the famous Nicholas Flamel.
In the years that followed, the Dumbledore name gained importance, he hated being unable to change things with a seat on the Wizengamot as should be his right, but the maggots took it away when his father was imprisoned for killing the muggles who attacked Arianna. He gave up his dream of joining the politics field in the beginning and instead got a position as the DADA teacher at Hogwarts. He worked extra hard on his mask of an approachable and benevolent man, gaining the trust of almost everyone like this, except for some Slytherins as they were raised by their parents with brains in their heads much to his chagrin.
Anyway, he became the most loved professor of Hogwarts and gained the trust of the Headmaster, this has its own advantages as his coming and goings weren’t much questioned.
Geller meanwhile, continued with their plans, destabilizing the Muggle government from the shadows to gain a foot on it with their own chosen candidates for key positions of power. The Great War started on the 28 of June 1914, imperious-ing Gavrilo Princip to kill the Austro-Hungarian heir, causing many treaties to fall off, and creating a major crisis in Europe. Not a full year later, every major European nation became involved.
Unknown to the governors of the many countries, both Gellert and Albus incited many incidents into starting, leading-on important figures with ‘helpful suggestions’ from imperioused people close to them.
All of this was possible because Albus would join Gellert to help, while on holidays, under polyjuice potion.
With the knowledge in Transfiguration and Alchemy that he gained from working with Flamel, Albus was able to help Gellert to develop the second biggest part of their plans. Muggles always started and ended wars all around, so they knew things would cold off in that front. Between the two of them, some proficient alchemist and potioners, and kidnapped muggles scientist; they created a variation of the Dragon Pox and the muggle flu, which would only work on muggles, and released it in 1918 when treaties started to be signed.
As deadly as Dragon Pox is to the magical population, it can be treated most of the time, the Spanish Flu though resulted in a bigger success than they expected, causing havoc to the muggle population. The couple laughed candidly on a post-coital celebration, thinking of the muggles reactions if they ever discovered how the most lethal diseased they had to combat until then, came to be from the hands and minds of two wizards.
They kept working out kinks on their plans, and their bedroom, but somewhere along the line, Gellert’s obsession with the Deathly Hallows became Albus’, jealousy took hold inside of him and then their partnership broke off when they fought one too many times for the right to wield the unbeatable wand.
That is what got Gellert caught in a cell on the Macusa a few years later, Albus’ schemes putting him there for a while but he escaped after only six months.
Unknown to Newt Scamander, he was but a pawn on the chessboard between Gellert and Albus, getting sent to many places for years, to trap Gellert for Albus’ gain. And Albus’ plans bore fruit one day when Newt brought him the sealed blood from the Blood Pact the wizards made many years before.
Some years later, he breaks the seal, the pact no longer protects Gellert and Albus is able to confront him.
Going on with what both of them planned, WW2 started in 1939, and soon after, two defined sides formed, the Allies and the Axis. It became a sort of game for them then, Gellert controlling one side from the backstage and Albus the other, both trying to outmanoeuvre the other and spies running all around.
Gellert used an unexpected strategy against him in the middle of all this, a lost Dumbledore brother. Albus responds in kind, revealing he discovered the remaining descendants from the Peverell line and one of the Hollows.
But, Geller made a wrong assumption in all this; Albus never cared much about Arianna and kills Credence remorselessly as he doesn’t even recognize the young man as a family member even if they share blood, disgusted too that another Dumbledore got infected with the Obscurus virus and making them look weak.
On 1945 they fight one last time. He thwarted Gellert’s plans and the war ended with the win going to the Allies forces, to Albus. With less than a few remaining followers, Gellert confronts Albus on a duel, who had then the entire body of Magical Law Enforcement officials from the many ministries around the world backing him up.
It paid up to put up with unruly children for so long, he thinks when he finishes reminiscing.
Suddenly, Fawkes bursts on fire, startling Albus.
He grumbles and rubs his tired eyes, grounded on reality once more, “What a lack of manners. I was busy thinking, you know.” A mocking chirp sounds from the little chick appearing in the ashes and Albus harrumphs while walking to his bedroom.
He must rest, he still has lots of paperwork due for tomorrow. Who would have thought that managing a school is so tedious?
“Every year is the same,” he sighs resting on his bed. “What do they do all year? Nothing. And then, a couple of weeks before the start of term they swarm me under paperwork.” He rolls to his right side, getting comfortable. “As if I don’t have to pay attention to the preparations for the beginning of the school year. Stupid board members.”
Soon enough soft snoring fills the room along with the sound of raindrops hitting the windows; Albus dreams of better times, a bed, and his missed lover.
Somewhere else, Henrietta Potter reads the Potter Grimoire, cursing Albus’ name for the hundredth time.
Chapter 3: Letters
August 7th, 1991
Harrie walks inside N°4 at the end of the week and finds the living swarmed in letters and the Dursleys running around like headless chickens, incredible! Ten minutes later, after laughing like a maniac, she uses her magic to make them disappear and walks to her bedroom leaving the Dursleys in a state of shock not knowing if to be thankful or freakout even more by her use of magic in their presence.
She sent the acceptance letter back to Hogwarts when she was at the alley, so why were letters still coming? … Meh, who cares.
Enlarging the match-box-sized-trunk she took out of her pocket, she puts it on a corner of the room and starts saving her things inside. Books, pens, non-completely ruined clothes and, in the apartment, her friends. She will not spend more time than completely necessary in the presence of the muggles, that’s the principal reason why she bought a trunk with an apartment and furnished it with a king size bed and pretty-comfortable furniture that went nicely along with her tastes.
The apartment is composed of a spacious living room with white walls, a big and black four bodies leather couch and dark grey love seats to either side, red fluffy carpets, dark mahogany furniture and paintings of different red flowers on the walls. Behind the couch is a black door leading to the bathroom that has the same colour scheme as the living room. To the left is the kitchen door and to the right the door to the bedroom.
The kitchen has, to the right, the stove and cupboards, the counter made of mocha marble with waves in peanut, tawny and cinnamon brown; to the left stands a moss green round table with twelve chairs around it in pear and fern shades of green, in the middle sat a white little centerpiece with a tall glass full of around a dozen red Lilium flowers under stasis to keep them alive and beautiful. The walls are mint green, from the floor and in gradient upwards ends in Prussian blue.
The bedroom has a big king-size bed in the middle, with white sheets and grey covers, two nightstands to the sides in one of which sits the hand of glory she bought, the wardrobe to the left and a big wall-length mirror to the right. The walls are white and the mahogany furniture has silver knobs. Over the wardrobe, a circular structure of around 10cm into the wall and 1m2 is covered by a thin layer of glass of 5mm wide with 1cm2 holes on many parts of the surface to allow the newly arrived Lile, Fire, and Dex to breath.
The spiders were busy webbing their new nest while Harrie put away the few muggle clothes she has, a white simple dress and a pink one that was a little old but comfy, the grey beret she took from Petunia and the few panties that were bought for her, the rest of the old hand-me-down clothes from Petunia and Dudley would be replaced when she went shopping at a muggle store. The vanishing cabinet stands to the right of the door, in a hole in the wall, hidden from view behind a tapestry.
“Where are you going girl?” asks Petunia from the kitchen, she’s putting away the breakfast dishes “Go prepare your bag, we’re leaving the place until those cursed freaks stop harassing us with letters and their weirdness!”
“I’m going to buy some things for the school year, you leave if you want. I already sent a reply to headmaster Dumbledore saying that I’ll attend, I don’t understand why the letters are still coming,” Harrie shrugs and goes out of the house.
“We’ll be gone in half an hour, if you’re not back by then we’ll leave without you, and you won't be able to get into the house either!”
Harrie ignores the shrill voice of Petunia and makes her way to the nearby shopping district, she has to fill the cabinets of her kitchen with food. Her trunk accompanies her because she doesn’t want to carry the bags full of things all the way back to privet drive, good thing she thought of bringing it.
Jeans, skirts, dresses, stockings, shirts, t-shirts, socks, shoes, trainers, boots, jumpers, coats, gloves, scarves, undies. After long hours at the closest mall, which was forty minutes and two bus stops away, Harrie now is the prideful owner of a decent sized wardrobe. Nothing oversized. Nothing used by someone else before. Nothing old, unstrung or torn. She bought her own clothes . Good, pretty, fitting, comfortable and new clothes.
She sits on her couch reading a book. She has a black long-sleeved shirt with a v-neck, a flower-patterned black and white skirt and white stockings on her legs, who are tucked under her. She really likes feeling normal for the first time with her pretty clothes, not like a messy little thing with clothes way bigger than they should, she likes this much better. She’s there for a while before the sequence of knocks she’s waiting for sounds from the door. Putting the wand in the holster strapped on her left hand, she stands and moves to the door, she puts on her boots and cloak quickly and goes out.
“Hello Red!” She makes a quick job of tapping the trunk with her finger and puts the shrunken wood on her pocket.
“Harrie! So good to see you.”
They walk into the pub while she talks, “My relatives decided to leave, they were swarmed with Hogwarts letters inside their home and freaked out. Since I had things to buy-“ she twirls around to show the result of her shopping spree and Carmilla smiles in response, “-I left and told them to don’t mind me, I prefer to be by myself than with them any day, or visiting you which is why I’m here. Hope you don't mind...” she asks casually.
“Of course you’re welcome dear,” Chirps Lizbeth sitting beside her.
“As if Red would ever drive a pretty little lady like you away,” Rolph rasps from her other side.
She smiles relieved, “Well then, I’ll bother you for a while until my relatives decide to stop freaking out and come back to their house.” Carmilla puts some tea and cake in front of her, which she quickly attacks with a “Thanks Red.”
“Oh, the muggles,” Lizbeth mumbles with distaste.
“Did you do something to them?” Rolph asks, curious.
Vampires and other non-humans start to arrive into the place while she tells the tale of the flooding letters at the house and all of them laugh at the muggles panicked reactions.
“Harrie!” Carmilla’s voice comes from the bedroom.
Staying at her place is the best choice Harrie made, with the living space inside the trunk she barely occupies space and the pub is big. Harrie shouts back from the shower, wondering what the woman wants.
“There are two owls waiting for you. Come over when you’re ready, okay sweety?”
Harrie rinses her body with a fluffy towel and dresses quickly, walking out of the trunk ten minutes later in a white lace dress with a black cloak and shoes. The pub is already filling up with many creatures while she walks to her usual sitting arrangement between Lizbeth and Rolph, where a cup of warm tea awaits her.
“Night.” “Noson dda, un bach.”
“Hi guys,” Harrie answers to their greetings and takes a sip of her tea, “Hmmm, vanilla?” she mumbles to Carmilla.
The vampiress winks at her and keeps preparing the orders of drinks from her customers, “And caramel, I believe the level said.”
“Nice,” Harrie says impressed by the mix of her tea.
Then, an owl lands in the counter in front of her, giving Harrie an angry hoot. From above her head, another owl, perched on the second-floor railings, also hoots alongside the first one.
“Ok, ok! Damn, what a terrible mood that you’ve got.”
Harrie unties the letter from the barn owl, receiving a scratch on her finger for her troubles, the other one then flies down and she unties her second letter. But the barn owl and the big eagle-owl stays nearby, waiting for responses surely.
The first letter is held on a common muggle envelope, surprisingly. She opens it and inside the thick white envelope lies two different letters, but both are in another language.
“Guys?” Harrie calls the attention from the vampires near her, and pointing to one of the letters asks, “Do you have any idea what language is this?”
Rolph shakes his head and Lizbeth shrugs with a ‘Sorry, nope.’ but a vampire that was near Carmilla, drinking a glass of blood, gets closer and looks pensive at Harrie’s letter.
“If I’m not mistaken, that is… spanish,” the blond rasps out, “Hey, Alfonso!” He calls for another vampire who walks from the back of the room. “This is Spanish, right?” The blond asks his friend passing him a glass full of blood.
“Indeed. Do you need a translation little one?” asks the dark-haired vamp, Alfonso.
“Yes, please. I don’t know any spell for it,” or, she does, but the memories of Tom travelling on his sabbatical after Hogwarts is a bit fuzzy and the wording of the spell is hard to make out.
The vampire clears his throat and with a deep voice starts reading Harrie’s letter, “Dear Henrietta.
I am so glad you decided to contact us, and of course, we will be happy to establish contact regularly with the main branch of the Potter family once more. I think father last mentioned a letter arriving home from uncle Charlus a good twenty years ago when I was but a teenager.
I know the family Grimoire provided you with the basics about when I was born and who I married, but let me tell you a bit more about myself.
I studied at Castelobruxo, the magical school in Brazil, and graduated with an apprenticeship in Herbology that provided me with my mastery on the subject a few years later. It was really a surprise for my parents then, considering how much I used to dislike studying, but what can I say, I was the typical rebel teenager at that age. But I always knew I loved plants and taking care of them, so I became an Herbologist.
My chosen career drove me to meet the love of my life, Luciana, who I married in 1970. You see, she is a mundane Botanist, which is the mundane name for what our kind calls Herbologist. In the next couple of years, we grew our own greenhouse dedicated to the manufacture and a laboratory for the study of every type of plant life.
If you ever need any kind of mundane or magical resource for your potions just let us know, we will be more than happy to provide.
Our work is very successful thanks to the machinery we import from Australia. Mixing mundane technology with magic sounds crazy, I know, but it is true nonetheless. Thanks to it, and Luciana’s and mine knowledge mixed, we won an Order of Merlin Second Class from the ICW back on 1989; for bringing back from extinction the Acheronta Movebo.
You may find it as Hell bramble if you look in books, and I know it is native to north-America, but that is the beauty of the machines we have here; you can recreate the natural environment for any plant with the wide variations of changes you can make with them, mundanes are amazing like that, such imagination they have.
They even fashioned successfully magically based laptops, tellies, and radios. I remember the shopkeeper mentioned that people at Europe became crazy about the radios, for quidditch you know, so maybe you’ll see some around there.
Also, as you should know, we have a daughter.
A beautiful warm night on the fifth of August, in 1982, Emilia was born. She is really excited to start her studies at Castelobruxo this next month and about getting to know you better. I am sure she will arrive anytime soon, with her own letter for you, so I won’t spoil you much about her on the pain of her never talking to me again, I have been warned repeatedly.
In regards to your last question. I am very sorry dear, but we knew nothing of those things going on at the time. I hope you can forgive us.
But, you know this young lady, you will always be welcome on our home. Us, Potters, always stick together. Even if we lost contact for a while. Family is family.
Before I forget, my dear Luciana sends you her love, and a few sweets she backed too. Just cast a finite to the wax that was sealing the envelope of this letter.
My best regards.
In Familia Semper.
Harrie scrubs away the traitorous tear that escaped and smiling brightly at the vampire, she thanks him. He looks warmly back at her and asks if he should read her other letter, which she passes along with a thankful nod.
On the back, it can be heard Carmilla with many customers talking about the magical radios and quidditch excitedly.
Hello! I know you don’t know me, but papa always says ‘family is family’ so I would like to know you.
Papa also said that you are living in England! Is that so? Does that means you are going to Hogwarts?! Are you?! Will you tell me about it? I will tell you about my school in exchange if you do. What house do you want to go? I think I would be between Gryffindor and Hufflepuff. I like badgers!
Also, you have to visit us sometime! You won’t be disappointed, I swear, Mom’s cooking is delicious!
By the way, mom says to tell you a bit about myself if I want you to know me, so what should I write…
Well, I like birds, because of papa and mama’s big, big, big greenhouse, a lot of pretty birds are around here all the time!
I also like Chucky, my dog. Mama and I found him near the road on the way back home a few years ago and he was badly hurt, he has scars all over his body and was very afraid of us at first. But I love him! And I hugged him a lot! And he likes me back now. Papa said he was a victim of dog’s fights. I really dislike people who make doggies fight. That is so mean.
I also like the book papa always reads to me before going to sleep. Did you know that the tale about the hopping pot is about our Granny Linfred! That is my favourite story ever. When a grow up I want to be someone awesome like our family.
Mom also said to ask you what I wanted to know, but not be too abrasive. What does abrasive means? Do you know? I am too lazy to look at a dictionary right now…
So… What do you like, cousin? Do you have a pet like my Chucky? What is your favourite story? When will you be visiting? I will tell mama to cook extra yummy for you!
All of them end up laughing, the deep voice of Alfonso with the enthusiastic words written by Harrie’s cousin mixed in comically.
The blond vampire wiped an imaginary tear from his eye while clutching his stomach with the other hand, “Alf that was hilarious!” and he keeps laughing.
Calming down, Harrie casts a finite on the wax of the envelope. A basket full of cookies takes all her attention. “Thank you, Mr Alfonso,” she says with her mouth full of a chocolate-chip cookie.
“Harrie, manners sweetling,” Carmilla chirps from her left, but her smiling face makes it hard to take her seriously.
Harrie opens then the other letter, which is a parchment rolled down, tied with a red-gold band, and sealed with wax with the Potter crest clearly marked on it. It looks very formal and opening it, the writing is neat and tidy.
The end is signed by Lachlan Potter and Harrie gets anxious about what it will say.
It is a pleasure to hear from you, dear niece. I am so sorry about your loss. The loss of your parents is something I can understand perfectly and you have all my sympathy.
I know this may come off as cold, but the truth is that I tried contacting with James many times over, but the answer was always the same and I quote ‘Stay away from my family’. So after an entire year of trying, I gave up on him and lived my life. I’m sorry you had to live away from you birthright all this time my dear.
You are well informed in that I left Britain to live with my wife after my parents' demise, may they rest in peace. Buy also, she too died, in 1973. She was the love of my life and even after she died, all the pleasant memories I have of her in our home kept me here all this time. That is why I never returned.
In fact, when I heard the news about my cousin’s murder I grabbed my things and went looking after you for a while because I knew of you, you were but a year and a half old or so. But when I tried to approach the place you where living in I was unable to walk near the house. I casted spells for hours to understand that blood wards were put on the place and had to leave to think what to do.
Later, the same day, I was on the Leaky Cauldron when a man approached me. Albus Dumbledore promised me that you would be taken care of, protected under the blood wards. He said Lillian’s sister would look after you as her own daughter. And I had knowledge about the man’s good deeds so I thought him trustworthy.
I know I can’t say anything to erase all the years you had to suffer for the mistake I made, but please, believe me, I only ever had your best interest at mind.
In regards to my fight with your late father, that I am sure you are curious about, it was because I didn’t want to help with his ideas. The Potter Lordship has a few clauses, established by uncle Charlus on it, and will be given only to a Potter that abides by them. When James was unable to obtain the Lordship he asked me to help, he only needed money after all and didn’t mind me getting hold of the Wizengamot seats or the rest of it.
But I was still grieving my wife who died three years prior and recently started working with the Macusa so I wasn’t about to leave everything I was working on to start living in England once more only because James wanted to waste away the hard-earned family fortune to help his petty group, or ‘Order of the Phoenix’, as he called it.
I know this will be hard for you, but your father was really spoiled when a child and that evolved into him being used to getting his way at everything as an adult. His parents and my own had many troubles conceiving children, but unlike me, James was always spoiled rotten. So when I said no, he cut ties with me permanently. I won’t repeat the insults he used but just know they were much too racist and prejudice for me to stand it all, so I didn’t mind it much when he sent his last letter to me.
Wrapping this up, besides my work at the Macusa, I have few ties on this land at the moment. I will be more than pleased to visit my old home. I have done all that I proposed myself to achieve at my post on law enforcement, a holiday will suit me fine, I think.
Please let me know in your replay if you would be amenable to us meeting. I will hold no grudges if you feel you need your space after knowing what happened between your father and me, but I would like to get to know you if you will allow it.
My best wishes,
In Familia Semper.
Noticing Harrie’s frown, Carmilla get closer, “What is the matter, Harrie?”
She shakes her head, “Apparently my father was a spoiled brat that cut ties with my uncle after insulting him because he didn’t help father waste away the family fortune. That and the meddlesome of Dumbledore are the reason that I grew up with the stupid muggles instead of uncle Lachlan,” Harrie says pouting.
But shakes down the disappointment and sadness away, to deal with later. She has letters to answer.
“I’ll be on my room Red. I need to write back to my uncles,” she waves at everyone and hides inside the trunk.
Alfonso helped gladly with the traduction from Spanish to English during the following week, after many letters were exchanged with Emilia and one or two more with her uncles. But when Harrie receives two in other languages, she’s toast. She sulks for a while, staring at them, sitting on the pub early in the evening, of all the vampires that frequent The Bloody Mary not one knows Hindi or Russian.
Then a vampire in old garments sits on the stool beside her that’s usually occupied by Lizbeth. She stubbornly fights with Tom’s memories, trying to understand what words he used for the translation spell without results. The vampire beside her waits for Carmilla to get him his drink and lazily waves a wand to stop in the air the spilt beer from an angry werewolf behind them that starts fighting with his pack-mate.
Carmilla shouts, rages and kicks the were asses before throwing them outside. While Harrie looks with admiration up at the vampire, who raises a questioning eyebrow at her.
“What?” he asks with a raspy voice.
“I didn’t know vampires can do magic too,” Harrie sais, “How does that work?” she asks twisting her head.
The vampire snorts. “Not all of us can use magic. I do because I was a wizard before the change.”
“But I thought vampires fell into the category of ‘undead’ and dead bodies can’t channel magic, right?”
The bar doors close and Carmilla walks back inside grumbling and cleaning the spilt ale. The vampire raises his wand once more and helps with a quick flash of light-blue, tables and chairs right itself while the liquids evaporate into the air.
“Thank you, Aristodimos,” Carmilla says with a sigh and goes back to prepare his drink.
He raises the cup to her with a nod and takes a gulp down, hums in pleasure, and looks at Harrie. “We aren’t really dead, that’s just myth. Here,” he takes Harrie’s small hand on his bigger and older one.
Harrie’s fingers rest on the smooth skin of his neck. “What is it sup-... oh!” and her eyes widen. There, a barely and almost imperceptible movement catches her attention. “You have a pulse!” she gasps.
“And I’m alive.”
“So you can do magic…” Harrie marvels. And gaining another curious look on her face she asks then, “How old are you?”
“Harrie…” Carmilla tries to warn but Aristodimos calms her with a raised palm.
“It’s fine, Red. Relax. She’s just a kid,” he smiles indulgently down at Harrie. “That is a dangerous question girl. Some may take offence. Be careful what and who you ask certain things.”
“Sorry,” Harrie says, without looking it. “So?”
Aristodimos laughs softly and Carmilla frowns at her, “If you really want to know,” Harrie nods. “I’m a decade away from my first millennia,” he drinks some more.
“Maybe you can help me then since you can do magic…” Harrie looks up at him expectantly.
“Depends on what you need.”
Harrie puts a finger over her letters calling attention to them, “Some relatives sent me letters but I’ve got no idea what they say because they’re in different languages. Do you know a spell to translate them?”
He hums and nods, grabbing his wand. The tip of the wand turns red and as he moves it, a line following its path appears in the air. “Grab your wand,” he says, waiting for her to comply. “You will move the wand following this pattern,” he points to the floating red line that looks like a cursive m with a little twirl at the end.
She practices the movement a few minutes and he corrects when she moves her wrist more than she should or makes the m’s arks too wide. And when he deems her ready, he teaches her the incantation.
He grabs one letter, “I’ll do this one and you’ll do the other. Ready?” at her nod, they move the wands in synchrony, “ Ad transferendum, English!”
The paper on their hands shake with an imaginary wind blowing in the room, the letters dance on the white surface, mixing and resetting on new positions. And then, she can read the words. A smile blooms on her face and she hugs the old vampire, giggling. He is pleasantly startled and watches as she runs into the trunk waving her hand and a loud ‘Thank you’ shouted at him as a second thought before she disappears.
The latest letters are from Potters living in India and Russia.
Lucile is the eldest Potter alive, she is 88 years old and lives in India but was originally born in Greece. She sent Harrie a short later explaining how Uagadou, the African school she attended, taught her how to dream-walk as that is how they let their future students know they have been chosen, and as she was a teacher there she knows the process. She promised to visit Harrie’s dream on the twentieth to talk. The 5 ½ hours of difference between places not really an issue since they’re witches and can use sleeping potions to coincide the time.
Lev Potter is old too, only sixteen years younger than Lucile and head of the Russian branch of the Potter family. They live in Khabarovsk, a city placed on the eastern side of Russia, close to China, a few hours on the ferry, he said. He is married to Aleandra Ivashchenkov, both are Master Potioners and members of the International Guild of Potioners were only the bests are able to join.
Their son is Mikhail Potter, a professional Duelist, that trains new-blood for the duelling platform since his children were born. Along with Ekaterina Fedkin, they are the parents of the twins Demyan and Vasily, who are only four years older than her.
After a long letter where Lev told her about all the achievements of his family members, obviously proud of them, he proceeded to inform her that he is to be called Grandpa and that he told the others about her so she should expect many more letters from them arriving soon.
On the next days, she will indeed receive a lot of correspondence. From her young cousins more than anything she received lots of questions because they are curious about Hogwarts. While Aleandra and Ekaterina would send packages with delicious food, she enjoyed the golubtsy—delicious cabbage leaves stuffed with meatballs—and the solyanka most of all; she generally doesn’t even like soup, but she loved the weird mix of sour and spicy. Oh! And the kvass is like the Russian version of butterbeer, delicious. Not that any of them can compare to the medovik, that honey cake is to die for. Harrie’s a sucker for sweets after all.
August 19th, 1991
At six-fifteen that evening, after eating a light dinner, Harrie takes the sleeping potion to wait for Lucile in her dreams. She loses consciousness soon, and, after what appears to be no time at all, an old lady walks up to Harrie and touches her shoulder from behind.
She turns around and the woman looks down at her with a smile on her slightly wrinkled face. The lady greets her with a soft melodious voice but Harrie can’t understand the foreign language.
“Lucile?” Harrie asks dubiously.
The woman laughs, “Ah, I’m sorry, forgot about the idiom differences,” she says in a lightly accented tone.
“… You look so young,” Harrie says surprised and Lucile smiles.
The woman in front of Harrie looks, at most, on her early fifties. She has wrinkles but they are minimum, her skin looks clean, unlike many elders Harrie’s seen before and isn’t falling in places either. She’s also wearing a cotton camisole that falls under knees, but is form fitting, showing that her body is fit.
If that is was she will look like at eighty, then Harrie is more than happy with her genes, even if her hair is a hassle most days.
“We’re witches dear. And, not to swank but, I’m magically strong. Mother Magic blessed me in that area. Well… most Potters, really. I remember father and mother were quite strong too,” she smiles warmly again and putting an arm around Harrie’s shoulders, pushes her to follow along.
The void space surrounding them changes then. Colors and shapes burst into existence creating a beautiful waterfall with crystal clear water that forms a circle and they sit nearby watching the water. Around them may plants take shape, the sounds of lots of birds fill the air in a harmonious song.
“I remember you asking about myself on your letter,” she says suddenly and Harrie nods. “Would you like to hear my story then?”
“Yes, please,” Harrie says hopefully. “Until recently, I was led to believe that my only relatives alive were a bunch of muggles,” and she raises her hands in defence at the concerned look she receives, “Not that I have anything against most of them, but the ones I had to live with are horrible.”
“Very well. How about I tell you my story and then you tell me yours, it sounds like something I really need to hear about.”
“Ok,” Harrie shrugs nonchalant but actually fearing the outcome of that talk.
Lucile takes a deep breath and looking up at the clouds, she starts talking.
“My oldest memory is about playing with a pink Puffskein at Yule. I was two years old, I think. My parents were always loving and caring, I never lacked a thing. And as I always got my wish, for my tenth birthday I asked to travel to another country. Father loved to learn new things so he decided we should go to Egypt and Mother who was curious about the muggles new development of air-travel, bought us tickets for a fly.
But flying was something new then for muggles, and not really that safe. So the aircraft we were travelling at suffered a malfunction and crashed, thankfully on water since we were travelling from Athens to Cairo. The damage was great and my parents didn’t make it. So I ended up alone, in Alexandria, with no knowledge of the language or how to go back home.
I was devastated and lost but even then though, I was fortunate. A family recognized my parents' wands for what they were and adopted me into their family. And with the help of magic, I communicated with my new family easily.
When the letters to Hogwarts and Mahoutokoro arrived a year later, my family decided to wait. For what I wondered at first until I had a dream one night. Joyous, they sent me Uagadou, in Uganda, instead of England or Japan.
Did you know that you can learn to do magic without those wands Eurasians like so much? Well, the Americans use them too, I guess...
Anyway, I went to school and learned magic; I made friends, got closer to my family and tried to move on as best I could. I dedicated all of the time I wasn’t with someone, studying, to avoid thinking and missing my old family so much, but it was a lost fight, you can’t hide your feelings all the time and expect everything to go on as nothing happened. Muggles have their psychologists to help with trauma like that, but I hid it behind my occlumency shields and let them fester, nobody knew I felt bad until one day everything exploded out of me.
On my last year at Uagadou, the nerves of the exams got to me and I ended up wrecking an entire room with accidental magic because my boyfriend got me mad. My parents were called then, I got suspended, they sent me to mind healers when I explained what happened and had to end up taking the rest of the year off.
But I recovered, I own them so much…
I graduated in 1921 without much fuss but continued my studies. After two years I applied for the master test in Dark Arts and approved, two years more and got my mastery on Light Arts. And since then, I’ve been travelling around the world.
My parents died thirteen years ago, so now it’s only me and my adopted brother Montu, who works in International Relations, at the Egyptian Ministry. My birthday is on the 24th of December, and his a day before, so we usually get together every year to celebrate Yule and our birthdays.
I have worked doing one thing or another, going from one place to next; I’ve assisted on the birth of my Goddaughter in Italy, helped containing a Quintaped that appeared mysteriously on Venezuela and, somehow, became a proficient wandmaker on the way; not that I need or use one myself, but the challenge of learning the craft was trilling at the time and my Master was happy with passing his knowledge along to someone who appreciates the work instead of just wanting to make profit.
So, we reach the last decade, when I settled in India.
The ability to talk Parsel is appreciated there, so I felt comfortable and decided to live in a house I was renting there and later brought. It’s good to feel appreciated instead of feared for something I don’t have a choice in. Most of Eurasia fear the ability to talk to snakes because of the relation it has with infamous wizards like Salazar Slytherin, Herpo the Foul and lately Voldemort.
My mastery of Dark Arts, Light Arts, and Wandmaking are what really matters to people near me now, I’m not brush off as evil and dark without a second thought because I can speak parseltongue anymore, it actually is something to be respected for, and, I can help the people there because they are more open to ‘esoteric’ remedies for their illnesses.”
She finishes with a sigh and lies down on the grass.
“How come that grandfather met you then? Because he wrote about your life a little bit on the family Grimoire,” Harrie asks.
“We met by chance when I visited London in 1958. And he recognized the hair, of course.”
They laugh for a while, falling later into a comfortable silence. Harry relaxes and dozes off for a while, watching the clouds pass by.
She awakens with a start when a group of monkeys rushes by the trees above her.
“Tell me about your life Harrie. How did you end up living with muggles?”
Harrie takes a deep breath, scowling at the memories of her relatives. “It all comes back because of one person,” she growls and Lucile looks at her expectantly, “Albus The Meddlesome Dumbledore.”
Lucile grunts then, “Oh dear,” she says pinching her nose, “I've met the man.”
Then Harrie puts up her shield, all her feelings getting thrown on the back of her consciousness to tell the story as best she can. She tells Lucile about Vernon, Petunia, and Dudley; the starving, beatings, and all around abusive behaviour of the muggles. She talks about not knowing her name until being told by a teacher of all things when she was six, about the lies, about Harrie-Hunting, about controlling her magic and getting some measure of peace for the first time. And, for some reason, she talks about Tom too. She tells Lucile about the Dark Lord that killed her parents and resides, even if just a little piece, on her fringe.
“Oh, my child!” The old woman gasps and hugs her tightly.
This causes an unexpected surge of emotions to flow through Harrie, in an instant, her walls come crashing down and the waterfalls on her eyes start. The emotions overpower her, all the fear and worry she’s reprimed feel ten times stronger; the sadness and loneliness; the hate for the Dursleys and Dumbledore; the love she covets so desperately but will never get because her mother and father aren’t there, and the resentment she feels towards them for their absence; and, more than anything, the raging desire to tear everything to pieces in her vicinity every time she thinks how easy her life would have been if her parents decided to just leave and forget about the war, go away to some place where they couldn’t be found and she wouldn’t have a prophecy tying her to a crazy Dark Lord.
Her tears don’t stop until she falls asleep and Lucile hugs her all thru it. Promising her to visit again on her dreams and to always be there for her when she’d need her.
September 1st, 1991
That morning, after a week of staying back at Privet Drive when the Dursleys returned, she woke up way before sunrise and took the night bus to the Leaky, covered by the hood of her black cloak walked in a brisk form to The Bloody Mary. After staying around for a long part of the month, many recognized her and sent her greetings, Carmilla prepared a big array of drinks and food to celebrate a party for Harrie who was leaving for her first year at Hogwarts and the rest at the pub lost no time joining. But two hours later, when the sunrise got too close for the vampires liking, most made a hasty retreat by floo. Carmilla, Lizbeth, and Rolph hugged her last and she left to let them close the pub and hide in the dark to sleep.
For less than a month Harrie prepared to enter the Wizarding World. Reading ahead of time for the courses, practising with a quill, reading about laws, customs, and planning. Albus Dumbledore obviously has an unhealthy amount of attention fixed on her, if Tom memories didn’t give her foreknowledge about the eccentric man she would have flipped after the discoveries made with the test at Gringotts, thanks to the insane Dark Lord she is more conscious about people reactions and micro movements that give away their inner thoughts. She was very aware of people ways of thinking from a young age thanks to the isolation and need to check her surroundings as to avoid beatings, that paired with the man who tried to kill her unsuccessfully ten years ago memories made for a wiser than the norm eleven years old Henrietta Potter.
Tom may be batshit crazy but his mind is a mine of gold.
Carmilla and the vampires from the pub, once they warmed up to her, also gave her tips about how to hide and as vampires or werewolves, they had lots of practice in the subject and good tips to pass her. In Red’s case, it was more about how to behave like a lady because apparently, she ate horribly and her manners were atrocious, so Carmilla took it upon herself to make a lady out of Harrie. She had a lot of knowledge, and thanks to her escapades to the alley and city, practice too.
It is thanks to these many advantages that Harrie finds herself walking into Hogwarts' great hall with none the wiser of who she is. For the train ride, she used some makeup—that Carmilla and Lizbeth taught her how to use—that she bought while shopping for clothes, to cover her distinguishing scar, she also braided her untamable hair and put her grey beret on alongside with a comfortable ocean blue dress and black cloak. Nobody recognized her during the ride.
Severus Snape watched her all the time she walked to the front of the hall, trust the man in love with Lily Evans to discover the young daughter of the woman he cared enough as to ask the feared Dark Lord to spare. She scoffed at the thought as if any self-respecting mother would let a maniac kill their children. Carmilla almost died, and in the end, became a vampire to protect hers!
Her reddish black hair falls in a messy braid over her left shoulder, her eyes—maybe some shades greener than her mother's—recognizable enough to those who ever met the woman, the scar lyes perfectly covered under the makeup yet. Dumbledore, McGonagall, and Flitwick looked directly at her when the Deputy called her name.
September 3rd, 1991
Ravenclaw, the house of knowledge, intelligence, wit…
All the time since she got the memories of the Dark Lord she worried about her choice of house when the time came. Gryffindor was out of the list by a long shot, she is courageous just fine when she needs to, but Tom’s memories showed her a house full of boisterous and prejudice people that think the world is a black and white place, you’re with them or against, there’s no middle ground. When you were black, white and everything in between, Gryffindors are bound to be against your very existence. Except for those courageous enough to think out of the box.
The Slytherin house isn’t much better, the Dark roots of the majority of the members from the house made them as prejudice as the lions, with all the baggage of Voldemort to follow. Light witches/wizards, muggle-borns, muggles and half-bloods in some measure are treated as lesser beings. She would end up killing someone by the end of the week if she had to share space with people so much like the Dursleys, mentally wise. They couldn’t be threatened into submission or they would retaliate, or tale Snape, who then would tell Dumbles and that would end badly.
That left the puffs and the ravens. The hat, Conroy—That means wise advisor, he said proudly while sitting on her head—, though she was way too distrusting of people as to go to the house of the badgers, so in the end, her only option was Ravenclaw. She was fine with it, but the rest of the school was shocked into silence for around a minute after Conroy called it. Maybe they expected her to end up on Gryffindor like her parents?
How much everyone expects her to be like them is very annoying, she grew up with magic-hating muggles who didn’t even told her of her name much less about her family until she was eight, and then, only because she threatened them with her magic. But it was also a bit funny, manipulating people like them is easy when they want to believe you’re what they’re expecting, in this case, a good little light witch. If only they knew how many ‘dark’ creatures she befriended that last month.
Ravenclaw, considered neutral in the battle of light vs dark, has the best of both sides. The light will think she’s still a good little witch with the intelligence of her mother and that’s why Harrie ended up in that house, the dark will think she’s not in Dumbledore’s and the light’s pocket enough and could be swayed to their side, which is very much accurate to say the truth. The neutrals would be curious and more amenable if they didn’t expect her to try and sway them to one side or another.
Sitting at the table in the great hall, only a bunch of people talks to her, Padma Patil—with her twin Parvati at Gryffindor—is the only girl that talks to her from their first-year group. Terry Boot who she recognizes from her Peverell family tree shyly talked a few times. Mandy Brocklehurst ignores her, not a surprise really, she belongs to an old family of purebloods—inserts eye roll here—. Then Anthony Goldstein, a cocky brat, acts like he’s Merlin incarnated or something so she kept far away from him. The rest of her housemates are fine for now.
Today’s first class is Charms, at half-past eight she grabs her mokeskin pouch with her things for the day and starts walking to the third-floor corridor. They had charms the day before with the lions and discussed the theory behind the basic charms spells. Basically, to make them work you have to focus on your magic, like the amount you want to put behind a spell or the effect it has to provoke. They started with a basic theory with Professor Flitwick—who used to be a highly accomplished dueler in his youth surprisingly, gossiped Padma that morning—for around twenty minutes and then ten minutes hearing the theory and history behind the Lumos charm, finally they practised the wand movements for ten more minutes to try the actual spell a few times in the last five minutes before break. It was a fairly interesting class, the Professor is a charismatic short man—a half goblin—that fortunately inherited his human parent attitude. Considering that she can make the charm work since mid-August, and wandlessly, it was easy and she was rewarded with five points for her good results.
The third-floor corridor—not the forbidden one—started to get full of first years five minutes before nine, hopefully, charms second class will be as interesting as the day before. And talking about the forbidden corridor, Dumbledore is mad.
"You are here to learn the subtle science and exact art of potion-making. As there is little foolish wand-waving here, many of you will hardly believe this is magic. I don't expect you will really understand the beauty of the softly simmering cauldron with its shimmering fumes, the delicate power of liquids that creep through human veins, bewitching the mind, ensnare the senses... I can teach you how to bottle fame, brew glory, even put a stopper in death — if you aren't as big a bunch of dunderheads as I usually have to teach." －Original text from Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone.
Potions started and Harrie was excited. At first. Ten minutes into the class made her realize that Professor Snape had a really unprofessional and childish grudge against her… for some reason. He asked a bunch of questions, which she answered correctly, but he seemed disappointed that she knew about what he asked, frowning at her, and the man didn’t give her any points either! The older students warned them about Snape’s favouritism for Slytherins and hate of anything Gryffindor, but he usually ignored the ravens...
After that, the man barked orders, sat for a while and they started to prepare a potion per the board instructions.
She didn’t expect the man to be so crass.
He berated them for the most stupid things, Terry was white and shaky, Goldstein grumpy and one of the girls she thought was called Amanda, maybe, run away crying at the end of the class.
She’ll definitely learn potions by herself, in a place where there was no grassy scowling Snape breathing at her neck, making her nervous, screaming in her face or judging her only because she was the daughter of James Potter. The man has an unhealthy fixation with her father.
Ugh! That’s wrong on so many levels!
Damn Petunia and her stupid gay novels. She should not have read that.
Ahk! Stop. Stop it. Bad thoughts. Uff. Don’t-think-about-it.
Anyway, she’ll find an unused room and teach herself, she only has to be careful and it’ll be just fine.
Oh...the room of requirements. Why didn’t I think of that sooner? Harrie facepalms.
Herbology with Professor Sprout was much better, but teaching children a fire charm didn’t seem safe. Haven't this people ever heard of the saying ‘Never play with fire or you’ll get burn’?
And they teach it to a bunch of children.
The Spiky Bushes didn’t seem much safer either, a plant that throws spikes at people would hardly make it in a muggle class. And then the Devil’s Snare…
Witches and wizards are barmy.
The last class of the week is flying.
She loved it.
Now she sits in the common room, many of her classmates are there too, with parchment and books laid all around as she does her homework.
Until five she uses her free time to finish her essays and go to dinner, after which she heads to the RoR to practice potions, after reading the extra books she brought she can understand a lot more.
Professor Snape never bothered to explain the reactions between ingredients, or why the potion needed to be stirred that many times in that specific direction, he gave them orders that he expected them to follow and do a good job at it.
Reading her books that have more than just the recipes and uses for the potions, she learns that different ingredients can be cut in different ways and the ones that have more than one way to cut, which are most, are used for different reasons and looking after different reactions for their specific mix.
The book also explains that the stirrings are related with the arithmancy formulae, sometimes even the time of the year and position of the stars affects the way and amount of times you may stir a potion.
Is really irritating that a man that’s been teaching for the last eleven years is so bad at it. Teaching is not only giving orders and expecting results, you need to guide the students and help them if something seems to be difficult for them, but Snape also has such an unapproachable scowl 24/7 on his face that the mere thought of asking the man anything makes her stomach churn.
Half an hour before curfew she enters the tower and relaxes beside Padma, who is doing her potion essay about the uses for the potion they brewed that day. The book from the list that came with the letter gives little useful information and Padma seem frustrated.
The others are also unlucky with theirs.
“Have you tried reading from another source? This book has almost nothing of use for the essay,” she mentions to Padma, but the others aren’t far enough as to not hear her, they look up startled for a second and in a sudden rush stand up and run to the nearby shelves fighting to grab the potions books.
She laughs and scoots over to the other table were the second year girls are discussing something about quidditch.
“...is dangerous Cho.”
“I know that, but I like it.”
“I don’t think that’s a good idea...”
“Yeah, you’ve mentioned it, Marietta.”
“You want to play in the team?” asks Harrie and Marietta look at her with dislike about the theme obvious in her face.
“Yes, but Marietta is worried I’ll break something,” is Cho’s answer with an eye-roll.
“Well, it’s always a possibility...” Marietta motions to Harrie with her hands, relieved, “but you have a good build for it. From what I understand of the game if you’re small then you’re faster, which you’re, so you already have an advantage. How are your reflexes?”
Marietta facepalms and turns to talk to her other friends while ignoring the enthusiastic conversation between Cho and Harrie.
The next day she’s enjoying the good weather, sitting under a tree near the lake and reading when Ronald Weasley appears. The boy badmouths Slytherins, disregard Hufflepuffs as useless and dislike Ravenclaws with his preconceived ideas of how people are just for the houses they were put into, he’s a bigoted git than makes her patience run thin since the first day of school because he tried insistently and forcefully to become her friend while insulting everyone around her every time.
“What are you doing?” The brat asks.
“Reading?” She points to the book without bothering to look at him and hoping that he’ll get the clue to leave her alone.
“You’re barmy, it’s a good day and you’re here losing your time with a book? Come on, let’s play exploding snap or something.” He grabs her hand and tries to drag her along without minding her things that fall when she's forced to stand.
She’s about to snap to the obnoxious redhead, that’s been bothering her all week much to her frustration when a recognizable curse flashes before her and Ron falls on his face. The leg-locking curse came from Malfoy, who is with his shadows as usual since the start of the year, they approach and laugh merrily at Ron who’s trying to end the spell with no luck.
“Come on, help me here mate,” he looks hopefully at her after insulting the Slytherins and she sneers in answer.
“You’re lucky they saved you from my spell. I don’t know what is wrong with you, but get it into your thick skull already, I’m not your friend,” she walks back the few steps to her things and starts dusting her book and putting her things back into her moke-skin pouch.
The shout of “Your just as bad as they, aren’t you?!” makes the Slytherins stop laughing and she freezes in place in incredulity at the stupidity of the kid “You’re as bad as the slimy snakes there, that’s why you weren’t put in Gryffindor, because you aren’t good enough! Your parents are surely revolting in their graves!”
She slowly turns around and Weasley’s smile slips from his face when he notices the dark look she sports.
“My parents are none of your business Weasley and I’d prefer to be like my cousin any day than to be an annoying brat that doesn’t know what he’s talking about, like you,” she spits glaring to the sprawled boy in the floor and cold anger lacing her voice, she doesn’t let him speak before she throws a spell. “ Silencio,” she mumbles lowly and Weasley’s mouth moves without producing any sound but clearly still insulting her without any iota of imagination, “ Levicorpus," she throws next and Ronald dangles upside down.
“Let's get some things straight for your sake, Weasley. I’m none of your business. What I do is none of your business. Who I befriend is none of your goddamn business!” Every sentence is punctuated with a stinging hex to the boy that squirms uselessly. “I don’t like you. I can’t stand you. You’re obnoxious and disgusting, a prejudiced ass, a bad-mouthed brat, and you have way too many opinions for someone that only knows how to shove food in his mouth like a pig and wastes time instead of learning, because if you didn’t notice that’s what the school is for, you lazy little prick. You make your parents' hard work and money waste with the way you act, they pay for your studies and you only play games or annoy me all day, you Ronald Weasley are an ungrateful little sh...” Harrie makes a disgusted sound when Ron throws up after so many hexes and time upside down. “Ugh! Disgusting! You can’t even stand some little hexes, you’re pathetic.” She throws one last spell in Parseltongue that she says in a whisper so they don’t hear her and starts walking to the castle.
“That was...” “Wow.” “Yeah.”
Crabbe and Goyle look at her with something akin to admiration in their eyes.
“What was that last spell you hit him with?” Asks Malfoy walking up beside her.
“A secrecy spell, he won’t tattle. I don’t know about you, but I don’t feel like getting a detention today.”
His eyes widen in surprise, “You need to teach me that… cousin,” and he smiles.
“And what do I gain from teaching you, cousin?” She smiles back.
“You’re nothing like I expected Potter.”
Harrie snorts unladylike, Carmilla would scold her for that. “Call me Harrie.”
“Call me Draco then. These are my friends, Vince and Greg.” The other boys wave from the blonde’s right. “Say, Harrie, what do you think about exchanging spells knowledge?”
They walk inside the castle and all the way to the library, with Draco trying to bribe the secrecy spell knowledge out of her, but much to his frustration she doesn’t budge. And she won’t any time soon either, that spell is a creation of the Dark Lord himself, a masterpiece.
Chapter 4: ƎЯIƧƎᗡDESIRE
"This is english."
§This is parseltongue.§
Hello everyone. It's been... wait, two months only? I thought it was longer... huh.
Well, you are all lucky, I bring another chapter, yay! *claps to herself*
It's another long one, so be ready to spend the next who knows how long reading... :D
(See the end of the chapter for more notes.)
September 16th, 1991
Harrie is back from the RoR and into the Ravenclaw common where she finds Padma, headbutting the table while the guys fight for a book, the older years look like hawks making sure they don’t damage their holly sources of knowledge. Most Ravenclaws have a thing with books, and weird as it is, it saved many from the firsties rampage already.
“How do you do it?” Asks Padma looking up at her, “You did your last potion alright, mine almost exploded and Amanda’s melted her cauldron!” Amanda, who was sitting in front of her, turned pink and glared.
“I read from another source.”
“A book I bought from the alley.”
Padma drags her with enthusiasm to their room, Amanda following. The girls sit on her bed while she opens her trunk and both squeal in a high pitch at the sigh of the library compartment.
“I want one!”
“I want one too!”
They both fix their eyes on Harrie and she sweats.
“Where did you buy it?” They ask at the same time in a creepy copy of the Weasley twins.
“Come on Potter, sharing is caring.”
“You can’t leave us having some common trunks when that precious thing exists and we can get one!” Padma says heatedly and Amanda nods eagerly.
“Humm I’m not sure...”
“Harrie!” “Potter!” They whine together.
“Ok! Damn...ok,” she looks at the girls with some dread, “Are you sure?”
“Yes,” both say and accompany their answers with enthusiastic nods.
“There’s this shop...” they keep nodding eagerly, “The guy’s called Mr Kent...” and still nodding, “In Knockturn Alley.” They stop nodding.
“You went to...” “Oh my god, I can’t go there, mum's gonna kill me!” “Potter, that place...” “But I want a trunk like that.” “I-I can’t imagine...” “I want one...”
“What about I show you the book first. You can think about the trunk later,” Harrie cuts them.
Padma’s worried expression changes, “Right! I have to finish my essay.”
“Here, gave it back when you’re done with it,” and she passes her book.
“Thanks, Potter. We’ll talk about that trunk later,” Amanda promises and leaves with Padma after a last appreciative look to the trunk.
Crazy Ravens... is Harrie’s last thought before getting lost on her own tome while she lays down on her bed.
October starts and the Ravens get more and more overwhelmed by the classes and the many different topics the library of the school and their own in the tower offers. Getting some balance between day to day study and reading about interesting things of their own volition is hard for most of them, as good ravens as they are, they want to attack everything at the same time and some of them lose track of the many different things they’re reading.
It’s in the middle of the week when Harrie sits with the girls reading a book while they finish their assignments, then Padma proposes to form a study group.
“Why?” Asks Amanda looking up from her DADA essay about imps, due for the next morning.
“Well, I don’t get most of this so I need some help from someone who does,” Padma explains waving her essay about Horklumps, also due for the next day, for the Herbology class. “What is the use of having a mushroom that only feeds gnomes and has no more proper uses in some kind of potion or food or just something?! It’s maddening!”
“Gnomes make the soil more fertile,” mentions Harrie without stopping from reading her book.
“What?” Breaths Padma in surprise, “That is useful. Why haven’t I found that anywhere?”
“My own book. Got it in the trunk if you want it.” By then the girls are used to the answer, Harrie seems to have bought books about everything—which she did—and only asked if they wanted to read them.
“Why do we have to read these books if they’re not really useful? They should change the books from the list then!”
“Maybe they should. I heard that the Weasley’s been passing along to their siblings some of the same books since a decade ago or so. I don’t mean it like an offence to their lack of money,” she defended promptly when the girls looked at her funny and they relaxed. “I meant that, after ten years, some spells changed. Or I would like to think that out there, somewhere, someone is looking after the spells and thinking ways of improving them if it is at all possible. I’m sure at least some of them have evolved in the last years.”
“Why would they? They work don’t they?”
“Such a firstie way to answer,” jumps one guy from the sixth year group besides them.
“Of course they have to be improved,” mentions another.
“It’s just that the professors are the same for those signatures that Potter talks about,” mentions the seventh-year girl that was tutoring the others.
“I’ve met Bill Weasley when he was here and he passed along to his brothers all his books except DADA’s every year,” said a blond near the tutoring girl.
“Professor Sinistra changed her book list three years ago.”
While the older students debated about the changes in the books list Harrie turned to her year mates. “So do you want my book?” She asked.
“Right, thanks, Harrie.”
“I heard you started a study group?” Says Draco as a way of welcome and sits beside Harrie on the Ravenclaw table, snottily sneering and ignoring the stares and whispers that action gained.
“Yep, you in?”
“Sure. Vince needs help with transfiguration and... well mostly everything really.”
“What about Greg?”
“He’s fine I think. I’m not sure,” he shrugs.
Harrie looks up, searching for the guys at the Slytherin table and finds the burly boys near the start of the table with a girl and two other boys from their year. She writes in a piece of parchment from her pouch and touches it with a whispered spell, the parchment folds into an origami bird and sails through the air to the boys near the big doors.
It lands on the girl who reads it aloud and then all of them watch in her direction. As one they stand and walk to where Harrie and Draco sit. The ravens are even more uncomfortable and squirm away.
They sit on the bench, with the ravens giving them a wide berth, luckily it’s early in the morning and not many left the tower yet, deciding to read a bit more while they could.
“What’s this about a study group Potter?” Asks the girl, it surprises Harrie the feminine way in which she acts since her chubby form and wild hair made Harrie think of Dudley, but surprisingly she is nothing like him.
“Padma Patil, Amanda Luck and I formed the group. You’re welcome to join,” she says with a welcoming smile.
“What can you possibly gain from that? You’re good in all the subjects from what I’ve heard,” comments the boy with dark skin, Zambini or something.
“I help my friends,” he looks unimpressed, “And if I ever need something they’d owe me.”
They all smirk, “Ok I’m in, I need all the help I can get with charms,” the girl adds with a pout.
“Good,” Harrie beams, “Welcome to the Dark Side,” she says, with a cackle and a sinister grin, while they stare confused and mostly shocked.
“I told you that’s not funny Harrie,” deadpanned Padma sitting beside her, “Good morning all. Are you joining our group?” She greets the snakes and ignores Harrie’s whispered ‘ You’re not funny. Star Wars is amazing.’
Many ‘yes’ and ‘maybes’ were her answer.
“We’ll need a big room for all of us, I don’t think miss Pince will like such a big group us ours in her library,” Harrie murmurs while munching on her berries and yoghurt for breakfast.
She was reviewing Tom’s memories to find some room they could use for their study sessions and didn’t notice the seventh year raven approaching with a look of bad news.
“Potter stop giving permission to the little snakes to usurp the Ravenclaw table.” The guy took her out of her thoughts with his hand on her shoulder and a sneer centimetres away from her face.
She blinks startled and scowls at him, Adair Goldstein is as much of a nuisance as his brother, always believing his shit to be gold or something so she doesn’t regret what she did after because he started to make his hold on her painful.
She casts, in succession, three quickly wandless spells. The first to silence him, the second to freeze him in place and the third a mild version of the cruciatus curse that created Voldemort and gave the victim the amount of pain the caster wished. She only made it a bit painful, like a broken arm, enough for him to stop squeezing her shoulder and whip the scowl from his face. While he kneels because of the pain, she casts a fourth spell, the secrecy spell in parsel barely a whisper like air rushing out of her lips, to make it impossible for him to tell what happened and anyone from knowing. The Dark Lord is really ingenious with his creations. The Drink of Despair more so, a nasty piece of work that one.
“Don’t ever touch me again,” Harrie growls at him before professor Flitwick gets near them and hovers over the guy, who still feels the aftershocks of the curse.
“Miss Potter, did you do something to him?” Dumbledore asks from behind, startling all of them by his sudden appearance.
“Only a stinging hex sir. He made my shoulder hurt.” She rubs her shoulder, who indeed hurts, she’ll get a bruise thanks to the bastard of Goldstein.
“Can I see your wand, Miss Potter?” Dumbledore asked with a frown.
“Of course sir.”
The man casts the revealing spell on her wand and truth to her word a stinging hex incantation appears as the last spell cast. He gives the wand back to Harrie with a glad smile and gives Goldstein a look before sending him to his place and to stop overreacting to a simple stinging hex much to the guy’s desperation.
Once the professors leave and they are left alone, she says, “Bastard,” with venom in her voice and reaches for her shirt seeing the bruise taking form on her shoulder.
“That looks nasty.”
“I’ve got worse,” Harrie shrugs and continues eating her breakfast.
“That wasn’t a stinging hex Potter.” Is the first thing Theodore Nott, grandson of Theodore Nott the first, a member of Tom’s inner circle, says since sitting at the table.
“Wasn’t it?” She smirks mischievously.
“What did he felt?” Asks Draco, more used to Harrie’s shenanigans and quirks, after getting close in the last month.
“Like his arm broke.”
“Remember me to never anger you, cousin dear.”
“You know better than that already Drake.”
“You’re scary,” says Greg with a vicious glint in his eyes.
“I like you,” adds Vince smirking, and then frowning, “Well, not liking liking you know...”
She snorts, “I know what you meant, thanks, Vince.”
He says a meek, “Ok,” and starts shovelling food on his mouth with pink adorning his cheeks and Greg laughs at him.
“So, I was thinking, until Goldstein so rudely interrupted me, and I think I know of a place where we can study.”
“Where?” Padma asks trying to forget what she just heard her friend said a moment ago, Goldstein deserve it after he gave her that bruise and it was only the feeling, it’s not like Harrie actually broke his arm.
“The dungeons. I wandered there last week and I think it used to be a duelling chamber because it’s big. I’ll find some things to make it more lively and tell you when it’s ready in a few days. What do you think?”
“It’s fine.” “Ok.” They mostly answered.
“So you’re all in?”
“Yes,” all the Slytherins agreed.
“Good. Let’s make a list of the subjects everyone is good at and we can start arranging times for when I’ve got the room ready.”
“I’m good with herbology,” supplies Zambini, much to Padma’s relief.
“I’m fine at transfiguration, but my best is potions,” mentions Draco.
“I can help with charms. That’s my best subject,” adds Padma.
Amanda takes notes, she arrived just after the ‘incident’ and listed all of their strengths. Harrie can help better with DADA, potions, and astronomy. Vince and Greg surprised everyone with their love for history. Nott will help with Charms and Millicent with herbology and astronomy. Lastly, Amanda put herself up to help with transfiguration.
October 21st, 1991
“Did you hear about the boys in the infirmary?”
“Yeah, so much for bravery when you don’t have anything to back it up with.” “People say that the Weasley in the first year was found barely alive.”
“Good riddance I’d say, his manners were nonexistent like his patience, he’s terrible academically and jealous of everything and everyone. I was getting sick of him insulting us ‘bookworms’.”
“Yeah did you heard about his constant fights with Malfoy?” “Such a shame for his parents, they barely cover the expenses for his studies and he slacks all the time.” “I don’t like him.”
“Nobody likes him Clearwater, he’s a spoiled brat and as insufferable as your boyfriend, but at least Percy doesn’t go around insulting everyone.”
“Shut it, Davies!” “What about the other kids? I heard one lost an arm. A Thomas maybe?”
“Dean Thomas, he was the black kid. I also heard that Seamus Finnegan—the one that explodes everything—was sent to St. Mungo's because he was with his guts out.”
“Ugh! Belbie, I’m trying to eat here!”
“Sorry, Cho…” “Neville’s cowardice saved him, Dunbar told me that Ronald almost convinced him to go too.”
“That’s not nice Mandy, Neville at least has some common sense. I mean, the Headmaster said it the first day not to go there, unless we wanted to die a painful death.”
“Didn’t know you like him so much Su.” “I don’t!”
“Su and Neville S-I-T-”
There goes the conversation. Harrie stops paying attention to the rumour mill to keep reading Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them. Sometimes I wonder if I’m the only one with some sense here, going to the third floor *snort*, dumb boys.
That morning when the mail arrived, a regal eagle owl landed in front of her, a letter from Kranulk had attached a report from the PI. Cain found that indeed Sirius Black was never tried and have been illegally imprisoned in Azkaban the last ten years, the records book hold no trial register for him. What’s worse, the man met with some questionable characters at some bars and they mention Black never was a Death Eater.
The day kept going and that night was announced that Seamus Finnegan died in St. Mungos. That put a dampener to the enthusiastic youngsters with thoughts of making their own investigation in the third floor thinking they were more capable than the little Gryffindors.
Harrie couldn’t care less, she is much more worried about the man that sat in Azkaban for the last ten years when he’s very much innocent.
After four days Harrie finishes preparing the room for the use of her club, the ex duelling chamber is circular and approximately a hundred meters wide, stone stands cover the borders to each side from the door, only interrupted by another one on the opposite corner of the room leading to bathrooms that have changing lockers, showers, sinks, and toilets. The place is perfect, and since it’s the one Tom used to train his Knights of Walpurgis, it is covered by very well placed and resistant wards. One could even cast dark magic without alerting the Hogwarts main ward system.
After calling her own elves from Ravenclaw castle to help, the place is left as good as new. The sinks, toilets, and showers are all fixed. The lockers are ready to be used if the others want to have something handy. The stands have fluffy pillows and quilts for the cold. Against the walls, to the right of the entrance, she put some books that she thought could be useful. Letting some space, she put four long tables to each side with chairs only looking to the centre so they could discuss things if they needed. The best part is that with the help of the room of lost things from the RoR she got everything for free and only had to ask help from the elves to move the furniture over and do some cleaning.
She walks the labyrinth to the stone wall with a little snake in a corner and hisses to it §Open,§ she says, which it does easily, the wall moves to the side and she enters the snakes' territory.
Immediately all the people occupying the common room stiffen at her presence. Draco looks at her with his mouth open, rather dumbly. She approaches and pushes it close with her finger.
“That was most unbecoming cousin.”
“What...How...Did you just...?”
She smiles, “Did I just?” and looks around to the other first years, “Hi guys. I just finished preparing the room. Wanna take a look?”
“What is someone with blue and copper doing in my dungeons?” Asks a bald man from a portrait, which she recognizes as Salazar Slytherin, Tom used to fight with the man a lot in his youth.
“Oh, I’m Henrietta Lilith Potter-Black,” she walks in front of him and with an elegant courtesy as Carmilla taught her, she says, “It’s a pleasure to meet you, my Lord,” while many Slytherins look cross-eyed at her.
“Hump at last you have manners child. Now, how did you enter this place when you’re one of Rowena’s?” Asks the man calmer.
“I’m afraid I can’t tell you in front of so many witnesses, my Lord,” she says signalling the snakes with her hand, “Maybe if you enforce your snakes to secrecy then I could.”
Salazar raises a questioning eyebrow, surprised at the level of knowledge the raven girl shows. Maybe, she wasn’t just a raven…
“Very well child, but you will answer all my questions after.”
“As my Lord commands,” and she tips her head.
The Slytherins then shudder when Salazar, in Parseltongue, activates the secrecy spell, featured in the crests of their robes since the beginning. He, like the portraits of all the other founders, can access the magic that overflows Hogwarts and do many other things if he so wishes.
The man into the canvas moves a hand and an elegant chair in silver and dark leather appears. “Sit and talk. Are you one of my descendants?”
The Slytherins are, after this point, overwhelmingly and utterly over their heads with confusion and shock.
Harrie sits gingerly in the comfy chair and talks, “I am indeed one of your descendants my Lord. My mother wasn’t a muggleborn since you very well know such thing doesn’t exist,” many snakes choke in their spit at her words. “She was the many times great granddaughter of Malvius Gaunt, who at the same time was the many times great grandson of your granddaughter Selene Slytherin.”
§Can you understand me, child?§
§I can my Lord,§ and if there was any doubt left in the mind of the snakes, Harrie speaking parseltongue fulminated all of them.
§How did you know I could bind my snakes to secrecy. It was never written anywhere, I made sure of it.§
Her twitch is caught by the keen eyes of her ancestor much to her displeasure, if Tom ever gets back a body and meets with Salazar it will be bad. §Do you remember Tom Marvolo Riddle my Lord?§
§Yes. What about him?§
§I am the Horcrux he made unknowingly the night he tried to kill me when I was merely a babe.§
And Salazar went on a show of fury that made many in the room lost their consciousness in fright, canvases all around the room vacated the premises as quickly as they could, the ones who were too slow were left in many states of petrification, burnt, missing limbs and much more.
Harrie stands and met the disbelieving stares of the snakes and snorted. With a final look back to Salazar she hurries them to stand. “Come on guys, when Sal gets all worked up it takes a lot for him to calm down, let's go see the room.”
They follow her, and the moment they are out the door the questions start, she ignores them.
“The hell...” “I think I’m lost.” “Potter if I don’t come back the others will know it was you.”
“Don’t put your knickers in a twist Nott, we’re almost there.” Harrie mocks and makes him splutter with crimson raising on his cheeks.
“I don’t think people go so deep into the dungeons anymore.” “Yeah, it’s full of spider webs.” “And our footsteps are marked on the floor.” “We’re all gonna die because we followed a Ravenclaw.”
“You’re such drama queens,” she moves her hand and they stop in front of an unremarkable part of the dungeon, they all turn to look at her, she hisses to the door and it opens.
“You can talk parsel...” “Old news, you already heard me talking to Sal. Come on, get in.” “She can talk parsel!” “Yeah, I’ve heard it, you moron.” “Oi!” “I’ve got lost in some weird kind of parallel universe, didn’t I?” “What...!” “Woah!” “This place was always here?” “Damn, where did you get these things?” “You even put books on the stands against the wall. Did you empty your trunk Potter?”
“I found those books around Nott.” She sits to the side while they explore, from the other door Padma and Amanda appear, engrossed in a discussion which ends when they find them into the room.
“This place is incredible, isn’t it?”
“You’re such a snob Nott. Girls, have you got the copies?”
Padma passes bits of parchment to the Slytherins and they looked relieved.
“This place is really like a big labyrinth so I thought you’ll need those, don’t lose them, and when you’ve memorized the way here, burn them. But even if you lose those and someone finds it, they’ll see only black parchment so don’t fret Greg.”
“Come look at the bathrooms!” Calls Draco who went to take a piss.
“Here Drake, don’t get lost.”
“Oh a map, thanks, Harrie.”
“I’m gonna set a password to the door and let you know what it is, you do your thing.”
“Uh, can someone help me with transfiguration?”
“You’re a lost cause, Vince.”
“Here let me help you.”
October 28th, 1991
The gossip grew in intensity after the twenty-first, everywhere she went someone talked about the ‘bold firsties’ and how Dean Thomas was the only kid with any apparent survival chances, missing an arm but still alive. Ron Weasley is still in an induced coma at St. Mungo’s with a high risk of brain damage, the Healers don’t hold much hope and the family is in a tight spot with their lack of money as to try and get help from overseas experts.
Dumbledore doesn’t look happy. McGonagall is fuming most of the time and twitches every time she looks at the man.
The owls sweep through the Great Hall and land in front of the students. One beautiful barn owl with pretty reddish feathers in her wings lands in her extended arm with a delivery from the Daily Prophet since she got a subscription to the paper two days ago.
The bigger title called her attention instantly ‘Dumbledore tries to cover deaths and accidents at Hogwarts’ . Apparently, Weasley died early in the morning and the old man tried to cover it, failing miserably because of Molly Weasley’s cries and leading to the discovery of another kid (Finnegan) who died under his care. Rita Skeeter, who Harrie learned was a shameless liar that put whatever fancied her in her articles to call the attention of the naive public, went on and on about how the Headmaster put something dangerous in one of the Hogwarts rooms that lead to the dead of two boys and the injury of another, how he tried to hide the information from the law and the public, how the kid (Thomas) would suffer from the trauma of the loss of a limb for the rest of his life thanks to the ineptitude of the old Headmaster, how the man is obviously getting senile in his 110 years of age as to not notice that anything ‘dangerous’ is considered very appealing in the eyes of his young charges. The article ended with many questions that would put the public to think, maybe, but there’s always the people who like to remain blind. The woman surprised Harrie with the lack of embellishments that her usual stories are saturated with.
Whispers started to get louder and soon enough the voices raised and people started to question between them what reasons had the Headmaster for his actions. The worst was McGonagall’s rant to the old man that became silent after Snape recovered from the shock and put some kind of muffling spell around them making their voices sound like gibberish.
“Why would he try to cover their deaths?” wondered a third year besides her aloud.
“To save his reputation of course,” Harrie says before drinking her tea.
“What do you mean?” the fourth year to her other side asks in befuddlement.
“People likes to think of him as a wise, good and a bit eccentric man with a blindness that truly astounded me at first until I read and learned about what he did for people to start trusting him so readily. But if you care to pay attention to the man carefully you’ll notice the cracks in his mask, he’s grown complacent in the last years I imagine, sometimes I can notice the Machiavellian man behind the grandfatherly facade. But if you’re like the others you’ll only notice the show he puts forward. Think about this, Grindelwald and him were in their fifties when they fought, the prime of their lives. Albus Dumbledore, a simple Hogwarts professor, up and went to fight Gellert Grindelwald, the mind behind the war that killed millions of people in the muggle world, and won.” ‘Millions’ someone choked while she talked and a muggle-born confirmed her claim.
“You have to think that a man capable of killing someone of the calibre of Grindelwald have had to be capable of some incredible feats of magic, he probably had a lot of magical reservoirs to back him up in a fight against a Dark Lord, he also had to know the man because I imagine that Grindelwald’s Reapers didn’t just step aside and left them to fight alone, so they knew each other someway. After all this, you really think Albus Dumbledore is only a wise and old man that likes to be near so many children just because. He knew Grindelwald, he has a lot of magical reserves which will prevent him from going senile and let him live for longer than usual and he most likely is at Hogwarts because is the place that allows him to mold the minds of the children. Children that will lead the future of magical Britain. You’re Ravenclaws, now tell me, what is the most likely situation here from an informed and deductive point of view, not the bullshit that everyone follows like blinded sheep.”
Fortunately, Dumbledore and McGonagall left before she started her rant. Her words led to a massive debate later that day at the tower.
And with the passing of the days more joined, Slytherins created hypothetical situations and scrapped every resource to obtain the truth moving sneakily around and listening in every conversation, Hufflepuffs refuted most of the ideas with facts they fought hard to find and got morose as time went on, Ravenclaws information gathering abilities were tested from the first to the seventh years and meanwhile the Gryffindors looked affronted by what they heard, stubbornly keeping their stances save for a few of them and many fights broke between them and all the other houses.
October 31st, 1991
Harrie left the feast early and started to the Ravenclaw tower thinking about what book she should read that night, but reaching the second floor corridor an awful stench filled her nose and made her gag, she covered her nose with the hem of her cloak to dampen the foul odour and kept walking thinking that maybe some kid got sick after so many sweets and that was it, but after rounding the corner the sight of a big monstrous mountain troll, pale-grey skin, bald, with a club and stinky made her falter. The vicious thing was just entering the girls' bathroom and a second later a loud scream woke her from the shock.
She runs to the bathroom and watches as Hermione Granger hides under the porcelain sinks with the stalls broken to the other side. “Granger!” The girl crawls just in time to avoid the club breaking the sink she was hiding under. "DEPULSO! Granger get out of there!” The spell barely makes the big brute stumble so making the debris float with her wandless magic she sends them soaring to the trolls head. The stone bits made him stumble some more and Granger runs to her side. “Engorgio! ” The club that was about to smash them doubled in size and hovered for a second in the air with the troll dumbly looking up at it, the club falls knocking the troll.
They stumble a few steps back from the beast falling to the floor, the troll doesn’t move a muscle. The adrenaline leaving her bloodstream makes Harrie feel tired, she is panting and sweating. “You alright?” She asks the other girl who is still looking at the fallen beast with a dumbfounded expression, “Granger?”
Startled, Hermione snaps her head in Harrie’s direction “What?”
“Are you ok?”
“Me?” Hermione looks at her with a face like saying ‘You’re the one who defeated a troll and are now asking me if I’m ok?’ “I’m fine…” she answers in the end.
The arrival of the professors cuts her short, they are scandalized at the sight of the unconscious XXXX beast, defeated by the two eleven years old girls… or more like ecstatic when Hermione explains that she did nothing to help.
Thirty points to Ravenclaw later, Henrietta falls in her bed and closes her eyes exhausted. How in hell did a troll got pass Hogwarts wards? By Tom’s memories, the wards are supposed to stop creatures like that one from passing the limit between the forbidden forest and the school grounds...
The next day Hermione shyly walks to were Harrie sits on the Ravenclaw table eating her breakfast and stands there for some uncomfortable minutes, losing her patience.
“Potter,” she finally says.
Harrie looks at her with a cocked eyebrow and waits for the girl to talk.
“I...hmm...thanks?” The girl mumbles, clearly embarrassed by the stares of the people around her.
“You’re welcome, Granger,” Harrie says and resumes eating her breakfast. Hermione’s cheeks pinks and with a sad air around her turns around to leave, “What are you doing Granger?” Harrie halts her mid-step.
“Uh?” The girl says dumbly.
Harrie points to the bench beside Padma where is some open space. “Where are you going? Sit already.”
Hermione’s confusion turns to surprise and then to a big beaming smile, she sits.
November 5th, 1991
One morning Amanda wakes her up early as a prefect waited for her at the door.
“Come on Potter, the snakes are making everyone nervous posted at the door, the only one that talks to so many of them is you.” She rolls her eyes and rubbing the sleep out of her eyes goes out of the tower.
“You need to come with us. Quickly!”
The guys drag her into the dungeons and once there sat her in the same chair as last time she was in the Slytherin common. The gossiping snakes were all already there, unsurprisingly.
Into the canvas, the bald Salazar Slytherin discussed heatedly with three others. A man in a red outfit, red hair, her green eyes, and a sheathed sword hits Sal on the head. A woman with long raven hair, a regal blue dress, and a tiara pinches her nose tiredly. Another plump woman, blond and short, holding a cup looks with fond amusement at the fighting men.
She looks to the side, to her friends, and they all shrug at her questioning look.
“They asked for you,” Draco says.
Watching with interest to the portrait she notices the women inspecting her and waves her hand with a smile. Both of them smile back warmly. The raven-haired woman says something in the direction of the men and they stop to look at her and the ginger immediately gasps with a hand on his chest.
“She has my eyes!”
“You called for me?” Harrie asks looking at them.
“Who are you, child?” Asks softly the plump woman.
“Henrietta Lilith Potter-Black ma’am,” she says and bows to her.
“She’s lovely. I don’t know why you worry so much. Marvolo was a lost cause since the beginning, I can’t see this one becoming a Dark Lady.”
“You dimwit old nut!” The raven woman shoves him lightly on his arm “Your fighting with the kid never helped, you needed to guide him and taught him to be a decent man, instead the guy goes and becomes the next Dark Lord and kills hundreds of magicals! I don’t know about the others but I won't risk it again.”
“Sorry, Rowena,” Salazar says dejectedly “But you must know that was never my intention, I tried. The brat was a mess when he arrived. He was already so lost...”
“Don’t worry my friend,” the other man gives him a manly one-armed hug, “We’ll help with this one.” He smiles at her and asks, “You have my eyes little one, are you perchance of my blood?”
“Yes my Lord,” she curtsies again, “Geraldine Prudence Gryffindor, the last of the line, married my great great grandfather.”
“That decides it then,” says the blond woman. “She holds blood relations to all of you. We’ll all guide the dear and make sure this child becomes the greatest she can be.”
“Yes. And this time that old man won’t ruin one of my heirs!” Shouts Godric with vigour.
“Godric, you last heiress ruined her own self, you know that.”
“Aye,” he responds moodily, “We’re a bit stubborn when we want something...”
Salazar snorts, “That’s like saying I like to focus only a bit on my spell creations or potions.”
The women laugh merrily and Godric pinks while rubbing his neck.
“Very well, let’s start.” Says Rowena.
“Salazar will you do the honors?” asks Helga.
“Of course my dears.” He gains a look of concentration for a moment and five seconds later the canvases of many portraits crowd the walls, ghosts came through the brick walls, house elves pop occupying all the available surfaces and a minute later Severus Snape enters the room.
“Well fuck,” Harrie mumbles and is promptly chastised by all the adults.
“What are you doing here Potter?! And what is this mess you’ve...”
“Pip, take care of him please,” orders Helga and a little elf snap his finger leaving the potions master tied to the nearest chair, silenced.
“I don’t like that man attitude. Never did. That old man is as insane as a goat contracting him to care for children,” grumbles Godric.
“Mm-hmm never liked him either,” agrees Salazar.
“Albus machinations... let’s not ruin our good mood thinking about that ridiculous two-faced backstabber.” Rowena focuses on the canvases, “Welcome all to this first meeting in a long while. We would like to introduce you to our Heiress Henrietta Lilith Potter-Black,” she says regally with a motion in her direction, once more the people say greetings, this time at her. “She’s Salazar, Godric, and my own descendant. With the agreement of Helga, she’s to receive help, guide and the wise knowledge of all of you. From this moment forward ghosts, house elves, portraits and Hogwarts may recognize Henrietta Lilith Potter-Black and lend your assistance if she’s ever in need of it.” She finishes and lets Helga step forward.
“House elves, always make sure Albus doesn’t feed her anything harmful, help her and protect her.” She lets then Godric take control.
“Ghosts, you will ignore the old man orders from now on, if he wants spies he can look outside Hogwarts because we’re not his puppets to manage like the sheep he has under his thumb. Help Henrietta, guide her to be a good woman one day, let’s protect this little girl from the old man so she doesn’t become a menace to the world like happened to mine and Salazar's last heirs' thanks to the meddling of that disgusting old goat.”
Salazar then steps forward and talks to the people in the room, “Snakes you will all keep the house secrets from every and all sources that try to harm the Slytherin Heiress. And you-“ his finger points at Snape “will not let it be known of any of this to one Albus Percival Gulfric Brian Dumbledore in any way, nor any of his allies and-or followers and-or servants as an order from Salazar Slytherin.” A flash of light surrounds Snape and the others, Hogwarts magic enforcing Sal’s order with a magical binding.
Godric then talks to her, ignoring the loud talking of the house as a whole “Henrietta, do you know where Sal’s chamber lies?”
“Yes my Lord.”
“None of that nonsense, I’m uncle Godric. Go there, find his office and the four of us will talk more there,” then he left the canvas, followed by Rowena and Helga moments after when they said their goodbyes.
§When you go down there be mindful of the basilisk. Maudueenie’s been alone for the last fifty year my dear. Maybe you can bring a cow for her, she’s always hungry,§ and he too leaves the canvas.
“What was that?” Asks Draco from her left.
“Oh, you know, just warning me about the hungry basilisk that lies in the Chamber of Secrets, he’s worried about his pet been alone.”
Draco blanches alongside the others that heard her words and she laughs long and hard. Weird morning.
December 26th, 1991
The Mirror of Erised, such an awful thing; tempting and dangerous thing. The compulsion from Dumbledore too. The man is a hazard to the safety of anyone and everyone, and after talking with the founders about the things the man did to their heirs she’s more than distrustful of him if that is possible. Godric told her how the man warped the mind of his last descendant to show up, just like he did with Sal’s own; feeding the gullible Gryffindor heiress with lies and rotten ideals, he made her into his pawn, a completely blind follower of Dumbledore that ended up dying for his lies.
But, back on the matter of what the headmaster did to her…
Compulsions, cast on an unwilling person or without the knowledge of said person are illegal, you’ll be charged with one week on Azkaban minimum and the sentence can be extended to a lifetime depending if the compulsion caused some kind of damage. The spell is eerily similar to the unforgivable ‘ Imperius’ which takes the will of the victim away, but the differences lie in that it can be fought with occlumency or a strong will. If you notice the compulsion, if not you’ll think you did the action by choice.
The Imperius Curse, on the other hand, is almost impossible to fight, putting the victim in a state of bliss that leads them to ignore the second conscious guiding their actions or—if the person's will and magic is strong—causes the victim to watch their body doing things against their will and/or ability to stop it. Rarely someone can escape the curse in time to avoid committing a crime and the few occasions this occurred were under high pressure in cases like someone trying to make a person kill a lover or familiar.
Compulsions are treated case by case, they’re easier to fight and detect. A person casting a compulsion in another one to, say, tickle their brother, punch someone they don’t like, stole for them; can’t be charged as harsh as someone that used the unforgivable to make the victim kill ruthlessly their entire family. The compulsion can cause the victim to kill, but only if said victim is prone to do it in their natural state of mind or are really weak be it of will, mind or magic.
Harrie doesn’t understand why the man leads her to the room the mirror is in, but looking at it, seeing the family she’ll never have is a cruel thing to do to an orphan. She doesn’t really miss them, she can’t when she’s never meet them, but she still craves the love and affection a family is supposed to give unconditionally.
She runs away from that awful thing and hides in the chamber, talking with Salazar, Godric, Rowena, and Helga. They talk until she falls asleep and then, frowning and angry, the founders scheme the downfall of one Albus Dumbledore.
They witnessed many things over the years and people are used to overlooking paintings, but they're good imprints of the persons they used to be for a reason; paintings aren’t just memories put into a canvas, after all, they are the blood and essence of the person. Theirs in specific is an anchor to the souls of their deceased beings, slim as it is, but an anchor nonetheless. Salazar got his friends mad over the years for many things, but his experiment with anchors for their souls to look over and have some influence over Hogwarts even after they died, that is something none of the other could begrudge him about. At least, after he found a way that wouldn’t drove them all mad as Horcruxes do.
She reappears two days later, after the funders insistence and an excuse for the professors, the first one to go to her is Flitwick. He’s waiting at the Ravenclaw door when she tries to go into the tower and takes her to his office.
When he asks, after giving her a cup of tea, she already has her answer ready.
“Where were you this last few days miss Potter? You gave us quite a scare.”
Harrie bites her lip and shivers before she talks, her lip trembles and her eyes shine with unshed tears, just as she practised with uncle Sal, “I-I’m sorry professor. It’s just...I-I found something and...and saw them.” She closes her eyes and goes for a painful look, “I saw my parents on the mirror,” she finishes in a breathless voice.
The professor’s only answer is a suave “Oh,” and he tries to comfort her and a while later accompanies her to the tower, telling her to take as much time alone as she needs but reassuring her that he’ll be available if she ever needs to talk with someone.
He leaves quickly after Harrie says she just wants to be left alone for the time being. The man leaves and the fury in his eyes aren’t just for show like Harrie’s painful expression.
Once she’s alone Sal appears in a canvas nearby, “Excellent show dear, go read something, I know you're itching for reading those books you think I didn’t notice spiriting away from my office,” and he gives her an entirely mischievous—creepy, if you were to ask anyone else—smile.
“Oh, you caught me,” she smiles up at him with mirth. “You won’t tattle on me to the others, right uncle Sal?” She gives him the puppy eyes and the man laughs.
“Oh, you’re so much like my own daughter that is bringing back lots of memories. Go read my books, they do good to no one full of dust and hidden away.”
January 29th, 1992
Another kid, a fourth year Ravenclaw this time, was hurt in the forbidden third-floor corridor. He was lucky to escape the Cerberus and only got a concussion when he fell back. Again the news made an apparition at the Daily Prophet and more questions were made about the ability of Dumbledore to take care of his responsibilities.
Also, another letter arrived. Apparently, nobody noticed that Sirius Black never received a trial. She asked Kranulk then to contract the best Lawyer he could find to deal with it as she is still at Hogwarts and couldn’t possibly leave.
Cain went to ask questions to Amelia Bones when they crossed paths, they both were at the Leaky, so he asked for a moment from her time and questioned the woman about the lack of trial on the records, startling her. Amelia Bones was shocked when he told her that there were no records from Sirius Black trial and concerned, Madam Bones promised to find out exactly what was going on.
Now, almost three months later, Cain received the noticed that Sirius Black trial would be taken place on March sixteen.
“You’re such an annoying mudbl...”
“Levicorpus!” The chair Nott was using alongside his books fly around with the momentum of his body, “What did I say about that word Nott?” Asks Harrie from her seat, a glare drilling holes on the boy dangling in the air.
“Put me down, Potter!” He wails uselessly.
“No, nop, I don’t think so. You need to learn to respect people. For all that you know, Hermione could be your cousin by way of some squib line from the Nott family. Besides I’m sick of you spewing bullshit all the time.” She glares at him and shots a bright lime-green spell that makes the guy gag immediately. “Hermione has the same right to be here as you do, get over it. If you don’t like it, then you know where the door is. Next time I hear the m-word come from you I won’t just put some soap into your mouth.” She frees him from the spell and the guy leaves coughing not even caring about his things.
“You put soap in his mouth?” Asks Hermione still a bit shocked because of Nott’s harsh words for such simple discussion.
“Yes, is a handy spell that Godric taught me. He said that his lions were always a handful,” Harry explains with an accomplished air around her. The spell is deceivingly hard to cast for all its simplicity!
Hermione snorts and all of them starts laughing.
And I have the next chapter in the process of being finished too.
Yes, you read right. ;)
Be ready, I finish writing it and it'll be up for your enjoyment!
Chapter 5: Sirius 'Call me dad' Black
And as promised, here is the other one, just out of the oven.
February 15 th , 1992
Hermione’s been madly searching for a clue about the third floor and its secrets but Harrie didn’t pay too much attention to her when the girl started ranting about one thing or another. The moment she mentions Nicolas Flamel though, Harrie’s eyes lands on her friend in shock, the girl keeps talking about how difficult it is to find any information about the man and how Hagrid was really nervous when he mentioned the name to her so she thinks it’s important so she adjusts her facial expression quickly and drops her eyes back to the book in her lap, doing anything but read the pages in front of her.
Nicolas Flamel, famous alchemist born in 1327, 665 years old, creator of the Philosopher's Stone. He worked with Dumbledore when the man was young and together discovered many uses to dragon blood. Interesting. An abrupt sound of a book falling in the table in front of her cuts her musings.
“Harrie, are you even listening to me?” Hermione whispers furiously.
She gives her friend a sheepish smile and says “Sorry. What did you say?”
“Ugh! Forget it, you’re not interested, obviously. I’m gonna go look for another book and if I’m lucky I’ll find something on Flamel this time.”
“Good luck!” She throws to the retreating girl.
She read her book while Hermione searched in a big and dusty tome about Nicolas Flamel. Ten minutes later Draco sits beside her with a huff, Crabbe and Goyle—his perpetual shadows—sitting at each of Hermione’s sides.
“Hello Draco, you look constipated,” she says in an amused tone making the blond blush.
“Oh shut it! I’m not...constipated.”
“The Weasleys twins are a menace, they happened!”
“Oh? Do tell.”
“I don’t know how, but they convinced Peeves to throw away balloons full of magical paint that changes colours every time you try to spell it away! I had to run all the way here, from Peeves the Mad, and the Weasleys laughing somewhere nearby. Stupid menaces.”
Ah, that explains the boy's colourful appearance. Greg and Vince look like a rainbow puked on them, Harrie observes. Hermione was trying, in vain, to clean her clothes where theirs touched her own, leaving wide colourful patches behind.
“Well at least you don’t look like them,” she waves a finger in the direction of the pudgy boys.
Draco rolls his eyes and starts writing his essay on Fire Crabs, lucky him Slytherin will have DADA next Monday, while she still got hers and its due for tomorrow so she better starts with it. Getting parchment and her favourite Crow quill, she begins writing her essay.
The rainbow boys try to do their homework but only make a mess of the parchments, Hermione grows frustrated with her dirty clothes and leaves for Gryffindor tower ten minutes after.
Harrie finishes a while later and starts packing her bag. “I’m done. See you tomorrow at history?”
“Sure. I’ve got to correct some things from my potions essay for tomorrow, so I’ll stay until dinner.”
“Ok. Bye guys.” Draco nods going back to his work while Vince and Greg grunt from their positions sprawled all over the table.
Good thing they have their own room for studying, if they tried to enter like that to the library, then Ms Pince would have berated them for hours.
March 16 th , 1992
Detection spells. Easy to cast, but comprehending the mumbo jumbo of information feedback, is a different story. Another thing she’s grateful of Tom for, his memories are the only thing that helped her understand the difference between the different kind of wards/spells she’s been learning to detect and avoid getting lost on information input she receives back.
Surprisingly, the door leading to the forbidden corridor was blocked by a simple colloportus. A.First-year.Spell.
No wards, special protections or some kind of challenge to speak of. Pathetic.
Albus Dumbledore is practically begging someone to come and steal the stone, or at least try to.
A quick spell makes the violin, that she borrowed from a raven, to start playing a beautiful song and ‘Fluffy’ falls asleep in no time. Going forward into the corridor, she finds herself even more disappointed, if possible. She goes down the trapdoor under the animal and finds Devil Snare, rusty keys, a life-sized chess set, a troll, potions with a riddle attached and fire.
The final 'trap' is, incidentally, the Mirror of Erised.
Seriously, a hundred and ten years old wizard and that’s the best he can do? She would have believed the man to be insane if not for the gargantuan feeling of oppressive magic radiating from him at every meal. Anyone with that amount of power literally can’t get many illnesses, much less mental ones; magic makes it impossible for the brain to deteriorate and get things like dementia and such, the stronger the person, the saner they are… and the longer they live.
Replacing the Sorcerer’s Stone with a copy is kinda easy—the copy feels real with the incredible amount of magicka she put into it, as she depleted her reserves on the stone every night for a month. But, if someone tries to use it, it will fall apart—she goes back to the common room, puts the stone in the apartment at her trunk and sleeps the rest of the night.
The Flamels will be spitting fire when they learn what kind of ‘protections’ Dumbles put for the safekeeping of their stone. Was it really that difficult to use the Fidelius charm on a cupboard on his office? Or maybe protect the third-floor corridor with wards to keep out children, at least? Even protection that needed more than the knowledge of a first year would have been her choice instead of what the man did.
Devil snare was taught about in their first class at herbology and Hagrid made for a poor choice in the group of people knowing about the stone because he gets some fire-whiskey on him and sings like a Fwooper before a rainy day.
While Dumbledore is away because as a member of the wizengamot that her family seats grant him and as Chief Warlock, he has to oversee Sirius’ trial. So she makes good use of the opportunity and goes for the stone. It took her much less time than she expected to find her way around it, because of the lack of security, and in the end, she was disappointed and cranky.
Harry went there to appease her worry and instead found that her crazy idea, at the moment, that Dumbledore was hiding the Philosopher's Stone at Hogwarts was true. She never meant to pass beyond the door knowing how capable the headmaster is, but instead, she found Flamel's creation lying on the circular room and behind a bunch of laughable attempts at protection.
Well, maybe she'll get something out of this now...
Who could possibly know Flamel's address?
🝐 ~ ✶✷✸✹✺
“Why aren’t you studying?” asks Hermione from her pile of books, which covers an entire table “I’ve been studying for the exams for weeks and you still haven’t started. You need to study or you’ll all fail,” she says in that voice that grants not only on Harrie’s nerves.
“I have been studying, every day, while doing my essays and researching information. That’s how I study,” says Padma blinking owlishly at the girl.
“I have all my essays together from each subject and study a few weeks before exams, not months,” mentions Amanda who’s taking notes on a book while reading about the DADA homework.
“I’ve never needed to make too many revisions,” comments Harrie. “The Dursley’s used to have me doing things all day, every day, so I’ve got higher retention rate of the information I read in less time,” she shrugs and ignores the pensive look her friends’ sports.
The notice of Sirius Black being tried and questioned under the effects of veritaserum was released not long ago. The man was innocent and freed. “The court was floored when Black was asked if he ever was or desired to be a Death Eater, or if he used to be the Potters secret-keeper, and he answered with a simple no to all of the questions,” that is her favourite quote from the newspaper about the trial. And then a week later, “The ex-minister is heavily pressed by the public for his ineptitude and incarceration of an innocent man,” is another news she likes.
With so many interesting things happening Rita doesn’t even need to lie or write gossip.
The discussion passed and promptly April appeared around the corner. The professors started stockpiling homework for them, many spells were revised in practicals during classes, many felt like the only thing they did was write essays.
Since Quirrel was acting more strange than usual she was usually asked to help with the spells from that subject.
Vince had problems with transfiguration like usual, he can cast the spells but seem to have little imagination and his transfigured objects are rather simple, which McGonagall takes as a sign of him being lazy and not focusing enough making things more difficult for the boy because he feels bad.
Padma, like usual, dislikes herbology and Blaise worries about his charms so, between the two, they helped each other.
Draco, Hermione and Harrie are the only ones without trouble in a specific subject, just little doubts about something or another.
🝐 ~ ✶✷✸✹✺
All April Harrie received letters from Sirius. The man was ecstatic as a newly free man and Harrie promised to visit him at St Mungo's first thing that summer. Sirius insisted on her bringing food, hospital food is a great improvement compared to Azkaban’s but still not the best out there.
May arrived and a week in, while the headmaster was suspiciously out of the castle too, professor Quirrel was taken out the third-floor corridor by Aurors. His body was stiff and his face contorted in pain, his hands grabbing his head which was blackened.
The professors ushered the students away but the portraits passed the story that Quirrel tried to steal something that Dumbledore had hidden in there and something happened that killed him. The news added fire to the many hypotheses the students made at the beginning of the year.
At lunch that day, many ravens and snakes watched fixedly at Dumbledore, looking for a slip in his facade. The man sat all the time annoyed, his eyes lacking the usual twinkle on them.
At dinner, it was no better and he let slip a bit of his annoyance making many of the students confirm Harrie’s word that the man really hides behind a mask.
Back at the tower that night, after curfew, all the house sat debating more possible ideas behind ‘what is in the third-floor corridor?’
“You were right Potter, about Dumbledore’s mask. I noticed something different about him today.”
“Yeah, he was pretty pissed.”
“Pissed? He seemed disappointed to me.”
“That's how he guilt-trips you to stop questioning his actions and fall back in line with the mindless sheep.”
“Mm-hmm. Anyway, you should stop looking directly at his eyes so much. I noticed most of you staring at him all day.”
“We wanted to catch anything amiss, and we did.” “Yeah, I can’t believe I always thought he was only a senile old man.” “Why would you say that Potter?”
“Because he’ll start using legilimency on your lot if he thinks his usual method to control you with guilt isn’t working. He’ll look for new ways to make you feel as if you did something wrong.”
The following silence is deafening.
“Legilimency?” Padma asks, “What is that?”
“Basically, mind rape.” says an older girl, “Anyone with this ability can enter your mind, know what you think, know what you did or didn’t, know everything ,” she finishes, many shudder at the thought.
“So, unless you people know occlumency, you should stop looking at the man directly on the eyes, he seemed really annoyed that his usual tactic to cower the masses wasn’t so effective today,” Harrie adds helpfully, not.
“What’s occlumency?” Asks Amanda this time.
“Mind shields. I’ve got a nasty headache the first day of class thanks to his annoying constant attacks during the feast. I’m good so he didn’t notice I put them up consciously, he thinks I’m just a natural, which is also true,” answers Harrie jabbing the wand in her hand on her friends' direction and aiming a wink winningly.
“That’s why you were so angry when you went to sleep that night! I knew it wasn’t the lack of treacle tart,” Padma puts her closed fist on her palm with a resulting loud smack and then grimaces while Amanda has an ‘A-ha!’ moment and shoves her little index finger on Harrie’s face.
“Actually it was a bit of both. Treacle is my favorite.” Harrie pouts and ignores her friends' amused looks.
And of course, another massive chaotic battle to get information about Dumbledore’s use of legilimency on students starts the next day, when word gets out of the ravens' conversation the night before.
The Slytherins mostly laughed in the face of the ravens and mocked their lack of ‘proper’ training from their parents. Apparently, the lot is taught occlumency with insistence and if for any reason they weren’t then their peers teach it when you join the pit. The puffs were horrified at the prospect of the use of such invasive, undetectable and illegal kind of magic. The gryffs were reticent in believing anything they heard anymore and like morons ignored completely whatever was discussed about their beloved and benevolent headmaster. If only she could share with them half of Tom's memories... they'll probably fall dead of shock on the spot.
But at the end of the month the fifth and seventh years focussed on their OWLS and NEWTS, they started studying head-on for their exams while the rest took their own on the last two weeks of May.
Harrie and the study group had meetings in the room every day. Those three first weeks of may they were joined by Parvati Patil and Lavender Brown when Padma brought them alone at the beginning of the month.
Daphne Greengrass heard Draco talk about it one day and followed them, of course, Tracy Davies was with her.
Adrien Pucey found the room the month before, when he got lost down the dungeons and found them studying, he got permission to stay and use the relaxing place to study from the group, but only if he kept the knowledge to himself. So sometimes he was also down there with them, Harrie liked the guy, he was funny and didn’t disturb their sessions.
The last addition to the group was Cho and Marietta. Cho liked Harrie’s truthful attitude and became common to find them talking in the tower when they sat reading near the earth so it was not such a weird sight when the girls were found in the study room one day with Harrie.
June 1, 1992
“The fifth and seventh years look stressed.”
“You’ll look like that too in your OWLS and NEWTS years.”
“Maybe you’ll look like that Granger, some people don’t need to prepare five months before an exam.”
“And that’s why my scores are going to be better than yours Malfoy.”
“Keep dreaming Granger.”
The older years really look tired as today they started their exams while the other years already finished theirs. Harrie was satisfied with her results, she paid attention in class, studied some weeks before the exams—as she finally had the time to for once—, wrote everything she knew about the subjects and her cast of the spells was perfect.
“Harrie, mother asked to pass this to you, I think is an invitation of some kind. I don’t know why because I already told you to come over to the manor.”
An expensive silver envelope with the Malfoy crest passed from Draco’s hand to hers.
The last two months Lady Malfoy wrote to her at least once a week asking about her school life, preferences and a lot of different things, the woman gave the motherly aura in her letters as much as Draco’s. She started to ask about Harrie when Draco mentioned her relatives and the mutual dislike in his letters. Like any other pureblood, the idea of a little witch living in a muggle household horrified her and since then Narcissa mothered her by way of letters.
I would like to invite you to spend some part of your holidays at Malfoy manor, if not all of them. Draco may have mentioned this already but I wanted to make sure that you knew that your presence is very much welcomed in the Malfoy household.
My husband is eager to teach you any and all things you feel curious about and I myself will see to it that you learn our customs and traditions. I have to confess that we found ourselves shocked when you mentioned in your last letter the amount of knowledge the Headmaster avoided to provide in regards to your rightful upbringing. But don’t worry dear, we will provide you with anything you need to learn, I have already planned for dance lessons between you and my son, who is a talented dancer after many years of practice.
Also, Lucius feels endeared that you asked for our help and would gladly help you with anything you need to learn in regards to the future management of your houses, Draco has practice about the same matters once a week with him so you will have company during those times and will be able to ask for any help from them.
Please let me know when you will be staying with us, I have already made the house elves prepare a room for you.
Most sincerely, Cissa
Thank you, I’ll certainly be accepting your invitation and I‘m waiting anxiously for your lessons. I’m afraid I’ll have to spend the first week at the Dursleys, but after that, I’ll be visiting Malfoy manor for as much time as you’ll have me, I’m not eager of that first week with the muggles, but is a necessity because of the blood-wards I mentioned before.
Send your husband my thanks as well. I was very worried about my actual lack of knowledge regarding the handling of my houses, I’m not sure what the Headmaster thinks he’s doing avoiding his obligations to my birthright but I prefer a thousand times over your family’s help than his, after the things I discovered he did to me I’d prefer to steer clear of him.
We’ll meet at the 9¾ platform in two weeks, hopefully.
Looking forward to this summer,
“Did you sent a reply already?”
“I’ve got to go to the owlery yet.”
“Here, send mine as well, please.”
Draco grabbed the white envelope and gave her a nod before walking down the stairs to the dungeons where the potions class would start soon. Harrie and Padma went up to the first floor, the DADA’s new professor is Clive Édgard Williamson, a young Auror in his late twenties. The man is a better professor than Quirrel ever was, unluckily for the OWLS and NEWTS students, he's only been teaching for the last four weeks of classes and will only stay for the remainder of the school year.
Quirrel’s death caused a lot of questions and conspiracy theories to surge from the school inhabitants, questions that Dumbledore masterfully avoided answering, and the ravens knew better after Harrie’s warning not to look at the man in the eyes too much. Many of them started studying occlumency even.
June 12 th , 1992
Friday started just fine, the children went to classes, some took their tests, some enjoyed the last week free of homework and a few of the first years were enjoying their class-free day flying around with Madam Hooch looking out for them. The peaceful day was broken at 3 pm. when a smoke column raised from Hagrid’s hut, Madam Hooch ordered to leave the brooms and quickly soared in the sky in the direction of the forbidden forest.
The weird sight of a hairless Hagrid appeared that night for dinner. The man illegally hatched a dragon’s egg sometime around January and now, the dog-sized Norwegian Ridgeback dragon, after reaching her sixth month of age, started breathing fire and burnt down Hagrid’s hut.
The next day, after breakfast, all the students started to file down the path leading to Hogsmeade station to go back home and many of them witnessed the dragon tamers hauling away Hagrid’s baby, Norbert, or Norberta since the rumours say it’s a female.
He was heavily fined by the hatchling of a dragon without the correct permissions. Where will he get the Ɠalleons from? She doesn't know.
Hermione, Vince, Greg, Blaise and Draco accompanied Harrie in the compartment back to London.
Blaise Zabini—not Zambini like she thought at the beginning—belongs to a neutral family with roots in Italy and is somewhat laidback, his mother is the very well known Black Widow who married for the seventh time with Blaise’s father some twelve years ago after a long ‘bad luck’ streak of dying husbands. After a long time of him studying her, he calmed and relaxed in her presence, they developed an easy friendship when Harrie showed interest in his study of herbology and showed understanding of many poisonous plants that only made it easier to talk with the guy, that Blaise knew so much about them wasn’t as surprising when his mother is who she is.
As Theodore Nott is the one that makes the most trouble, he isn’t with them. He was silent most of the time but then he would object to something Hermione said only because she is a muggle-born and they would start yelling at each other, it was funny until they were thrown out of the library for the third time and Hermione lost it. Nott was left mentally scarred for life when Hermione finished hexing and yelling at him. Lavender and Tracey were amused and said they were future lovers for sure while Parvati gave them funny looks that made Hermione squirm and Theo leave like he was chased by a werewolf, the rest of them mostly just laughed.
“I’m really excited, my parents said that we’re visiting France for a few days, I can’t wait for it. I imagine there is a magical alley there too, I want to find books to compare the spells they teach there. I heard there is a magical-”
“So, what are you doing this summer, Harrie?” Asks Vince sucking on a chocolate frog.
“-school in France too, Beauxbatons. I’d like to talk to some of them and-”
“I’m staying at the Dursley’s for a week and then at Malfoy Manor,” she mumbled with her own frog in hand.
“-compare our curriculums, I read in a book about the school that they teach dark and light magical theory in there. How is it that Hogwarts only has a light oriented curriculum? If dark magic is so bad then surely they wouldn’t teach it-”
“Do you have a broom? If you don’t you should buy one, I have a pitch in the back of the manor. If you can’t don’t worry though, I’ve got more for when the guys go and visit, father bought half a dozen a few years back.”
“-at other schools right? I can’t understand what is so bad about it. When I asked some older years the only thing they said is that dark is evil and light is good, how ridiculous is that? I want facts, I want theories and tests-”
“We should all go and play, I’ve missed flying, Professor Hooch lessons were boring,” says Blaise. “I’m staying with father in Italy for two weeks and then we’re back on London with mother, let me know if you hung out sometime.”
“-and proof. They talk about evil this, evil that and sound so prejudice it gives me a headache. They don’t even know why they say that it is evil and bad, they just do. Arg! Is so frustrating… Oh, I’m visiting Italy on the twenty-second, maybe you can show me the magical places around Italy, Blaise!” Hermione asks the boy with an excited smile. The calm and studious nature of his made it easy for her to talk to.
“Sure, let me write the address...” he tears a piece of The Prophet and writes in it with his quill “Here. Father’s manor is in the outskirts of Florence but I’m sure he won’t mind that I invite you to stay.”
“Oh… thanks Blaise,” Hermione slowly says, surprised by the invitation.
“We can floo from there and visit the shopping district. There’s also a public library-” Hermione squeals in her seat and he smiles knowingly “-and a museum of magic. Did you know that the famous Italian pizza was invented by a witch first? All of the available floo’s leave us in pubs in the middle of the city and there’s a lot of interesting places to go from there in the muggle side too if your parents get a bit freaked out with the magical side.”
“Thanks! Yeah maybe they will...” she laughs just realizing that maybe her parents wouldn’t be that much excited about things they can’t understand.
“And make sure to put a pretty dress or two in your luggage, mother and father are always throwing parties on the weekends. Sometimes is a ball and others just a tea party in the afternoon, I’ll let you know.”
“Oh! That makes me remember,” jumps Draco, “Mother said that you should buy a gown for lunch in a week Harrie, we’re going to some fancy restaurant in France before going to the manor. Father got an invite from a friend to go to the opening that day.”
“Ok, but isn’t a gown like… a bit much for a restaurant? And the lunch is on the fourteen right?”
“No, is not much, is the usual actually. And yes, that day is the lunch.”
“I’m gonna be there too. Father got an invite too,” Greg mumbles with little enthusiasm.
“You don’t like fancy acts?” Asks Hermione.
“It’s just so boring,” Greg whines scrunching his face and hunches on his seat dejected. “I have to sit straight and don’t talk. It’s horrible eating uncomfortable like that. Besides I don’t really like French cuisine.”
“You got me there mate, I prefer Italian or English over French any day,” agrees Blaise.
“I’ve never tried any different than English so it’s gonna be my first try of it,” Harrie pips in excitedly.
“Just don’t ask for anything that has escargot on it and you’re going to be just fine,” Draco adds with a green face that Greg and Vince share.
“Ugh! I really, really dislike those!” Hermione scrunches her nose.
“Disgusting,” says Blaise rubbing his stomach and frowning.
“What is escargot?” Harrie asks with less enthusiasm.
“Snails,” Draco says and Greg gags, leaving the compartment in a hurry.
“Ugh!” She shivers, “No thanks!”
“Change of topic, please,” Vince pleads.
“Well, I’m also going to Spain after a week in Italy. Are you sure is fine Blaise? I don’t want to impose in your home...”
“Don’t worry Hermione, we have lots of space in the manor. Besides father will surely enjoy the company of another man for the week, mother is always talking with her group of friends and most are single or...widowed. It’s fine.”
“If you say so. Then, do any of you know which places I should visit in Spain? I’ve got little information about magical places there...”
“I visited once there, you have to go to the war museum!” Vince supplies his idea with enthusiasm “Greg and I went there two years ago when our parents coincided on a meeting. They even have replicas of a pensive memory from Dumbledore vs Grindelwald’s duel, it’s really impressive!”
“I’ve visited the family house on the coast only, don’t know about any magical places there,” Blaise shrugs.
“I remember father mentioning something about an alley there, I’ll owl you after I ask him,” Draco touches his chin deep in thought. “I also remember that at the ministry, in the level where you take the international portkeys, are lots of pamphlets for tourists with magical sites to visit in the informational lobby. Maybe you can ask them there.”
“Oh, thanks Malfoy. I’ll tell dad to visit after leaving King’s Cross. I don’t think we’ll have time afterwards...”
“Do you have Hermione’s address?” Harrie asks curiously to the blond boy.
“Oh, right. What is it?”
🝐 ~ ✶✷✸✹✺
The first thing she does when she’s out of the station is going to the Cauldron that is only a few minutes away walking and once there she pays to use the floo to St Mungo's.
“Hello. Can you tell me where is the room of Sirius Black?” she asks the receptionist when she walks into the magical hospital.
“Family only is admitted, until he’s cleared by the mind healer,” answers the woman in a bored voice.
“He’s my father. Where is his room?” She asks again.
The woman looked her up and down in surprise, Sirius was a known bachelor all his life so her reaction isn’t unexpected. She is given directions and after taking the big elevator, with clear expansion charms in the interior to fit a small army, she’s left at the Creature-Induced Injuries floor.
At the door, she has the same conversation with a group of Aurors guarding the room. One of them enters to ask if Sirius has a daughter and comes back with a startled look.
“Miss Potter-Black you can come in.”
“Thanks,” she responds exasperated after all the problems they made for just a simple visit. She walks into a sterile room that bores her to death in an instant. “This room needs some decor, if I were here for months on end I’d be driven insane,” she says to the man that looks at her with a stupid grin. “Hello father,” she grins mischievously at the bachelor that seems struck between surprise, horror, joy, and shock.
“I think you broke him,” raps a scarred man in brown robes that sits to the side of Sirius bed and laughs merrily at the shocked look of his friend.
“Uncle Moony!” She cheerily greets him.
The first memory she had under locks was one of this man being taken away by an auror because he caused a scene when he saw her being treated badly by the Dursleys one day that they were visiting London. Dumbledore appeared in front of them for barely a second and the memory was put under a heavy fog after the man obliviated her. After he obliviated Moony of course. Then he proceeded to obliviate the few muggles around the dark alley where Vernon got them to hide on, when the man got close to them.
She had a few memories about Mo-ey and Pa-foo playing with her in the house her parents lived in before hiding, thanks to her highly developed occlumency.
The men beam at her once they get out of their shock and , after tight hugs, start asking her questions. They eat some chicken sandwiches she brought with her and listen to her retelling the happenings of her first year at Hogwarts with big smiles.
But as everything good, it came to an end. The mind healer said to Sirius that he needed to keep having sessions because after being thrown into Azkaban he’s gotten mentally stunted, he acts like the same twenty years old guy he was before because in his mind the time he expended at Azkaban was a blur of little to no time—thankfully—and that messed with his perception of time and mental growth. He’ll be released from the care of the hospital in two weeks if the healers find him properly recovered by then.
“In two weeks I’ll be released from the pit and we’ll get you out of the care of those horrible muggles,” Sirius says with joy.
“Don’t worry about them, I’m only staying there for the first week to keep the blood-wards up, then I’m staying at a friend’s house,” she dismisses his concern, she has nothing to fear from the Dursleys anymore with her wandless magic. “Do you even have a house?” She asks with a worried look at him.
“Hmm I might have to go back at number twelve…” He shivers in clear disgust at the thought. “Father died a few years ago and mother before him so the place must be a breeding ground for a lot of pests...”
“Maybe I can take a look at it if you want,” says Remus trying to help.
“You won’t be able to enter. If nobody's been living there for more than three months then the wards get on a lockdown that not even the entirety of the goblins course-breakers employers could break down.”
“I can go with him,” adds Harrie after thinking for a second about it, “I should be able to enter, right?”
“That’s too dangerous,” Remus shocks his head but Sirius seems to think about it for a moment.
“Kreacher!” Sirius calls.
After a bit of silence, a wrinkled house elf appears in the room. A dirty pillowcase covering his body and a crazy look in his eyes, the creature started insulting all of them almost immediately.
“Disgraceful master Black calls Kreacher. Mistress died because the master broke her heart. Unworthy master is around filthy beasts and half-bloods, loves muggles and the goat headmaster. Kreacher be doing nothing to anger her mistress!”
“What is wrong with him?” Asks Harrie with a distrustful look directed at the wrinkled elf that keeps ranting madly.
“This is worse than usual, he was ornery before but now he’s completely out of it. Maybe so much time alone in that house drove him madder than usual.”
“I’m not getting a good feeling about your place Padfoot,” Harrie grimaces.
“Anyway,” Sirius rolls his eyes at the ranting creature, used to be insulted by the elf. “Kreacher shut up and listen to me,” Sirius orders with steel in his voice. “This is Harrie, my daughter. She’s the Black Heiress. When she goes to the house you will protect her and follow her orders as it's your duty.”
Kreacher grumbles against the orders until Sirius sends him away.
“The visiting hours will end in ten minutes,” a passing-by healer announces.
“We should be going then. Harrie?”
“Right...before that. How good are you at occlumency father?”
“Umm good enough, that’s partially what kept the effects from the dementors at bay while I was...there.”
“Ok, I need you to read this when you’re alone. Bye Pads,” she waves at the man in the bed and leaves with Moony by her side sporting a curious look.
Moony accompanies her in the night bus until she gets down a few blocks from the Dursleys house. She uses the week there to get her homework out of the way. With the kitchen cupboards of her trunk full of food and under stasis spells, she doesn’t need to go out and eat with her relatives and see their ugly faces.
She goes out only sometimes in the afternoons to take a walk around the park nearby, to buy some books in the library and new clothes in the shops nearby. It didn’t look like it, but she grew taller, almost two centimetres in the span of the school year. She needed new jeans and toiletries. She also grabbed some notebooks with pretty colourful covers to take notes next year, parchment isn’t her thing.
Dudley tried to bother her a few times, but one use of a stinging hex usually kept him away. The law about underage use of magic can’t apply when the ministry can’t detect her wand being used. She madly cackles at the stupidity of the ministry.
Children don’t have structure so deeply ingrained into their minds as adults so the use of wandless magic is infinitely easier to them. If she didn’t keep practising her wandless magic for an hour at the RoR every night, then she’d have a lot more difficulty with it after a year of getting used to her wand; but as it stands, she’s as good if not better than she was before going to Hogwarts.
June 14 th , 1992
“Harrie you’re back!”
Carmilla greets her with a smooch to the check and a hug, many others say hello while she sits in her stool and she waves back at them.
With an appreciative sound, she tastes the first bite of a delicious piece of cake that Carmilla’s given her, this time it’s a red velvet cake, with whipped cream and cherries.
“Hmm, I’ve missed this. Your cakes are the best Red,” she gives the vampire a smile which is welcomed with a wink from the vampire.
“How have you been dear?”
“Bored out of my mind, I just came from my relatives' house. At least I’ll have my homework out of the way so I can enjoy the rest of the summer when I’m done there after a week.”
“You mentioned the boy, Malfoy, are you sure it’s safe for you to stay with that family?”
“Yes, he and her mother are my cousins.”
“Lucius Malfoy is the stoic kind of man I’d think wouldn’t give a damn about that...”
“If he indeed tries something then I’ll just throw a cruciatus at him, I’m sure he’s used to them after being Voldie’s play-thing for so long,” she shrugs unapologetically and sips her tea.
Carmilla shocks her head and snorts.
“So... I have to send a letter and I wondered if you can read it and tell me if I need to change something?”
“What kind of letter?” Carmilla asks suspiciously. “Are you doing something dangerous? Is this about a boy? It isn’t, is it? You’re far too young for that yet...”
“NO! No... It’s just, hmm. Here, just read it,” she shoves the correspondence in the woman’s hands, “Just don’t mention who’s addressed to.” Harrie slumps in her seat while Carmila reads the letter with wide eyes and a frown.
“You’ve got...Sweet King Tepes!” Carmila stares at the letter after she puts it back in the envelope. “This… are you sure you want to give it back? It’s a really coveted object...”
“And that’s why I’m giving it back. Having it in my possession will only attract trouble, but if I return it then I’ll get into their good graces. Having the favour of someone as important as they are could be a boon in the future.”
Carmilla gives her a smile and whipping a fake tear says. “Oh! They grow so fast...”
Harrie rolls her eyes at the woman antics. “So what do you think?”
“It’s perfect, you’re respectful and you give him just the necessary fake amount of security with that manoeuvre with the goblins.”
Harrie grins with satisfaction, “Perfect.”
🝐 ~ ✶✷✸✹✺
Monsieur Nicolas Flamel,
I’d like to inform you that I have found certain object recently that I believe belongs to you, I merely want to make sure it returns into your possession promptly and avoid it falling into the wrong hands. To make sure you feel comfortable I arranged this morning, June 14 th , for a private chamber to house our conversation at the British branch of Gringotts in Diagon Alley. If you'd like to attend, the meeting is arranged to take place on the morning of June 20 th at the meeting room N°27 at 8 a.m local time, but if you’d like to change the time and place for something more to your convenience please let me know and we can arrange something else.
If you feel the need to change the time or place please send an owl to my private box at Gringotts, it’s the N°134-CF, I’m suspicious that someone is redirecting my mail and that’s the reason for this measure to be taken.
Please, don’t let your acquaintance APWBD know about myself or our meeting, he’s the reason I’m contacting you directly. The measures he took to protect your property were laughable for a man as powerful, knowledgeable and capable as him. I’d recommend caution in regards to his person until you hear my story.
Heiress Henrietta Lilith Potter-Black
Hopefully, the man will hear her out.
🝐 ~ ✶✷✸✹✺
Heiress Henrietta Lilith Potter-Black
We, my wife and myself, would like to thank you for your consideration in our comfort.
We are amenable to attend the meeting at Gringotts that you arranged.
The letter arrived the 18 and Kranulk sent it after checking for any dangerous spells.
The next day the Dursleys are finishing their dinner when Harrie approaches.
“There is no food for you, Freak!” Shouts Vernon and sends a disgusted look at her.
“I’m in no need of your food. I’m letting you know that tomorrow, before twilight, I’m leaving,” she replies with a sneer that would make Draco proud.
“You need to stay here to strengthen the wards or some such nonsense. That freak headmaster of yours sent a letter. You’re going nowhere,” Vernon, again, shouts.
“The blood wards, yes, I know about them. I made some searching for the wards when I received my first letter and you know what? I can state at any moment that I feel like, that this place is no home of mine, go out the door and leave this hellish place you like so much, the wards will then fall and you’ll be at the mercy of any Death Eater who followed Voldemort—not that they’ll have any mercy for muggles—and they will want to kill my last living relatives.”
Vernon and Petunia splutter indignantly. He tries to shout again but she silences him with a quick movement of her wrist.
“If you appreciate those wards that keep the freaks away, even a little bit, then you’ll let me go without trouble. Me staying just for a week feeds the wards plenty of magic to keep them up for the remaining year. I’ll be back next year for another week unless you annoy me. If you do so then I’ll just grab my things, state the words that will collapse the wards, leave and in a years time you’ll be all dead in a really painful way.”
They pale considerably and Dudley catches the end of the conversation when she mentions them dying, he has some survival instincts after all it seems.
“After the way you’ve treated me, you’re lucky I didn’t collapse the damn things just to watch you die and get a good laugh out of it.”
“What if the bearded freak, Bumblebee or whatever, comes again?” Ask shakenly Petunia.
“He’s my magical guardian while I’m at school, but you are my guardians while I’m out of school. He has no saying in where I go or what I do during the summer.” She thinks for a moment about the man’s use of occlumency while the muggles wait, and a moment later she makes her decision, raising her hand she throws the secrecy spell at them. “That was a secrecy spell that will keep the man from reading your minds, you’re welcome.” If it was possible Petunia looked even more terrified at the prospect of one of the freaks getting inside her head. “No matter what he does he won’t know where I am, if he comes back just tell him I left to buy you something or that I’m staying in the house of a friend.”
“And where are you going?”
“None of your business, don’t act like you care now and spare me the bullshit,” she sends a last glare at her, stopping the silencing spell on Vernon and leaves. “Until next year, dear family ,” she salutes them mockingly and goes up the stairs to sleep a few hours.
The next day she visits Carmilla and her friends at the pub and waits until it's time to go to her meeting. A couple of hours later she sits at the meeting room, waiting for her guests, with Kranulk to her side.
At 8 o’clock the room’s door opens and a goblin directs two hooded couple inside.
“Monsieur and Madam Flamel?” Asks Harrie standing.
The man lets his royal blue hood fall off and surprises Harrie because she was expecting a really old and wrinkly man, not this young person who looks to be in his early forties, has rich brown hair without any grey on it and bright sea-green eyes. The woman, with a blood-red cloak, lets her hood fall a moment later, and she’s equally young looking with raven hair and pale grey eyes. Her dumbfounded look makes them smirk.
“Lord Flamel, Lady Flamel, let me introduce you to Heiress Henrietta Lilith Potter-Black,” she courtesies nervously with a red face. “Henrietta, Lord Nicolas Flamel and his wife Lady Perenelle Flamel née Le Tellier. Please take a seat.” Mr Flamel nods while his wife courtesies back elegantly.
Everyone seated, Nicolas and Perenelle look fixedly at her while she rummages in her moke-skin pouch. When she puts a black box in front of her the Flamels hold their breath, she slowly opens the lid and observes the reaction from the couple in front of her, the relieve that passes through their eyes makes her feel accomplished. She is also satisfied that she was correct in assuming that they would be reasonable people when none of them reached immediately for the stone while she talked.
“Let me tell you a story messieurs Flamel...” Harrie lightly shoves the stone in direction of the Flamels when she ends telling them her story. How she grew up, how she discovered her wizarding family story and more importantly how she discovered their stone and the measures Dumbledore put to protect it, or lack thereof. While Nicolas holds a shocked face, his wife is obviously displeased and curses under her breath.
When Harrie reached the point of why she mistrusted Dumbledore so much, they both looked positively murderous. Kranulk passed her inheritance test that she took her first day at Gringotts for them to read her health scan.
Halfway through it, Perenelle started crying while Nicolas rubs her back comforting his wife.
“I appreciate everything you’ve done for us this day Heiress Potter-Black.”
“Harrie is fine Mr Flamel.”
“Thank you, Harrie, call me Nicolas.”
Perenelle walks beside her and with a strong hug says “And I’m Perenelle or just Nell darling, I’m so sorry for all that you have to suffer *sniff*, so sorry. No one deserves that kind of treatment,” she keeps hugging her and patting her head while Harrie sits there uncomfortable, only Hermione and Narcissa ever hugger her before and the third time is as weird as the first.
Noticing her behaviour, Perenelle gives her a reassuring smile and sits back with her husband.
“I’m very grateful-” Perenelle shoves her elbow not too subtly at her husband and he winces, “We, we’re very grateful for your help recovering our precious artefact and opening our eyes, not many would retrieve something so valuable without asking anything in exchange. And Dumbledore…”
“That man!” Nell whispers with disdain.
“The level of evil that he’s capable of astounds me. I never expected the man that worked with us for so many years and became a dear friend of ours, a person we used to hold in a very high value… I have a hard time...I can’t...Uff.”
“It’s fine dear,” Nell rubs her husband's arm comfortingly, “I’m sorry to say this but, I told you so.”
“Yes my love, I always dismissed your concern because of your usual over-worrisome personality but I have to admit this time I’ve made a terrible mistake. You were right, I’m sorry.” Nell releases an amused breath at her husband’s regretful look and pats his cheek lovingly, making Harrie smirk, amused at the man's scowl.
“Harrie,” Nicolas gives her a sad look, “Thank you, you’ve no idea how much you’ve helped us. Albus sent a letter a few weeks ago saying Voldemort entered the school and tried to steal the stone so he had to destroy it to save the world from the madman. You’ve literally saved our lives, making a new one would take much more time than we have at our disposal with the amount of elixir we have left.”
“I imagined as much, I don’t trust that man, at all. You’re welcome.”
The Flamels leave after they talk some more and Harrie is left with a contact floo direction.
“Will you need something else Harrie?” asks Kranulk.
“Tell the healer that treated me last time that the block in my necromantic abilities will have to wait. I’m staying at Malfoy Manor and I’m not sure how they will react to me speaking Death’s language for an entire month. I need to make sure they’re that much trustworthy first. Have a nice day Kranulk,” she nods to him and leaves.
Chapter 6: Extra N°2, Tom Marvolo Riddle
Harrie attends Hogwarts, Dumbledore frets over the unexpected results to his schemes, and the Dark Lord - hitchhiking on the back of Quirrell's head - doesn't understand what is going on anymore!
An inside to the thoughts of Voldemort, over the course of Harrie's first year at Hogwarts.
Miracles do happen and inspiration struck me. Enjoy! :D
For an entire month, the Dark Lord sneaks after the Potter girl, filling up his mental banks with details about her. From the very first time he saw her, he knew, that she was nothing like everyone expected.
Where did Dumbledore hide her all this time?
The Wizarding World received nothing but child books stories about the fabled girl who ‘destroyed’ him for years, yes, but something truthful and veritable? Hardly.
Quirinus Quirrell twitches in the hidden spot of darkness in one of Hogwarts halls as they observe the little Potter girl walk along with Draconus Malfoy, the Dark Lord’s anger giving him a terrible migraine, almost constant at this time as he’s always displeased about something these days.
‘Follow them…’ hisses Voldemort on the mind of his pawn, who moves along.
Since possessing the body of the man, Voldemort has had flashes of sanity—not that he calls them that—and would think about his actual situation. Like right now, when he sees through the eyes of Quirinus and the mannerism of the girl reminds him of himself in his youth and a spark of sanity shots into his brain.
He’s capable, for a couple of minutes, to think straight. Reminiscing on his actions and decisions that lead him into his actual plight.
Tom Riddle, the little orphan who used magic as easy as breathing, became a shade incapable of keeping a sense of time for longer than fifteen minutes at most until he possessed the first wizard he encountered in years. Years! How could he, the strongest wizard in par with Dumbledore and Grindelwald, lose to a child? What did really happened that night anyway?
Blurry memories, unrecognizable train of thoughts and incomprehensible actions are what he gets when he tries to remember that fateful night, angering the Dark Lord and causing pain to his host that stumbles against a cold stone wall on the dark hall.
He was a prodigy! A genius child!
And now he’s a wraith…
More anger, more pain.
As Voldemort recognises the hall to the one leading to the Ravenclaw tower, he orders Quirinus to go back to his dormitory and stop following the girl.
And that bothers him too. How is that Henrietta Potter is like this? Calm when most kids her age are brash and stupid, intelligent beyond her years, cold with those she doesn’t know yet without being impolite, warded eyes and posture that take in every detail of the people and her surroundings, with mannerisms that remind the Dark Lord of himself, lacking the fanatism directed to Dumbledore that the masses apparently are born with these days as she instead seems to be wary of the man every time he caught her eyes landing on the headmaster. She isn’t blind and trusting like her father, or abrasive either. She isn’t as temperamental and easy to rile up. She likes jokes, as he caught her laughing at the ginger twins jokes, but never acted on her own to make something happen like Potter use to do.
Beyond the green eyes and unruly hair, Voldemort would bet all his money on the brat being born to a different set of parents altogether.
She isn't even prejudiced to purebloods or Slytherins as she spends lots of time with none other than Lucius son.
Henrietta Potter is a complete and utter enigma to him…
As Quirinus reaches his room some minutes later, he feels the consciousness on the back of his mind slip off into the more common jumbled mess of emotions instead of the silent and cold feeling that fills him from time to time when the Dark Lord decides to interact directly with him, and he sighs in relief.
The Dark Lord is surprised to discover when following the Potter girl one day, that she prepared the old room he used to train his followers many years ago, and is now a study room. Even more surprising is that the group is formed by Slytherins and Ravenclaws. They generally mix, but not in such large numbers. Inter-house friends used to be exceptions, not the norm. But here he is, watching six snakes and three ravens studying together in harmony.
As Quirinus takes a look at Potter and Voldemort through his eyes, the Dark Lord notices the charming smile taking place on the little girl’s face, the familiarity of it makes him shiver inwardly.
A spark of sanity shocks him and he goes back to reminiscing.
When Tom Riddle was but a boy, alone and forgotten to the world in an orphanage, he used to be like this too. All charming smiles, honeyed words and sanctimonious actions to match with his facade. But, the Potter girl isn’t putting up a show, he notices looking closer. She really smiles at the joke one of the kids made and is spending time with them because she wants to, not because she has to.
What a conundrum.
She acts so much like him, but at the same time, not.
Who is really Henrietta Potter?
James Potter was an impatient, spoiled, brash, and heavily prejudiced man. His little girl though isn’t like him except for, maybe, a little sassy. Lily Potter was intelligent and the girl is too, but the temperament of the woman was something to behold, putting even Bella under her when comparing the levels of dangerousness when the muggle-born got mad for some reason. Henrietta hasn’t shown once that hot temper, going so far as to laugh instead of rage when one of the Weasley’s pranks got her covered in bright red and gold paint; the closer that the Dark Lord was to see the girl angry was when someone ate the last piece of cake she seems to favour and her cheeks reddened as she watched in silence but frowning at the boy in question. The pout was quite endearing though…
And as he shocks himself with that last bit of thought, his mind goes back the same usual mess, impeding him from reacting. Quirinus sighs once more when this happens, as he was already feeling the beginning of another painful wave or rage flooding the emotions of his master.
Quirinus is having a relaxing time on one of the baths for the professors explicit use the next time it happens, with the amount of work he usually has to do as the DADA professor every day, this is once the few treats he can give to himself so he grunts in annoyance.
The Dark Lord’s sanity pops up for a moment and his thoughts focus this time on the changes he’s suffered over the years. Surrounded by kids all the time made him remember his own days as a student, his sudden sanity making him also notice the lack of care he had over the loss of his looks and genius over the years.
He used his intelligence as much as his face to achieve his wishes since he was but a kid on the orphanage; getting an extra ration of dessert, a new shirt, special permission to go out to the library on any given day, etc. Things didn’t change much when he went to Hogwarts, if anything, he got better at it as he charmed the snotty spoiled brats from the pureblood families and they did much of the work already as they got things done by just flaunting their names around. Dumbledore was a setback, but you win some and lose some after all. But after making that first Horcrux something...changed.
Why did he do that again?
He can’t, for the life of him, find an answer to that question and, if there is something that he detests, is not knowing or understanding something. Not knowing why he made such a life-altering decision makes his—hypothetical—blood boil, what with not having a body and such… That is also something that enrages him. What in the seven levels of hell happened the night of October 31?!
Over the passing of November, something curious takes place. Maybe not many notices this, but the house of Slytherin as a whole starts deferring to the little Potter brat. That, there, another thing that annoys him. What happened there? How did it happen? And, when? It took him years to climb the ladder to gain the snakes' allegiance—and not even of all of them—when the Potter girl does it on measly months…
That day, when the Dark Lord makes this realization, Quirinus finds himself passing out for the pain while Voldemort rages on the background of the man’s mind.
Of the few kids who stay for the holidays, Potter is one of them, and with so much free time, the Dark Lord follows her around even more. His questions remain unanswered, no matter for how long he watches her.
But, the peaceful routine gets interrupted by the end of the month. Dumbledore hides on a corner of the room under invisibility, just like Quirinus as he follows the girl, and Harrie stared at the mirror with wide and wistful eyes.
The girl stands in front of the mirror in utter silence, she doesn’t even move a muscle for the entire hour she stares at it; the mind of the Dark Lord is just as immovable and frightens Quirinus as he waits hidden on the shadows for orders from his master.
When Potter jerks away from the mirror suddenly, running away, Dumbledore follows her. And thank Hecate he does, as Quirinus falls to the floor writhing in pain the second he is alone; the insurmountable pain that curses through his body feels what he imagines the Dark Lord cruciatus would feel like, never before he felt something so vicious and all-consuming. As he gasps for breath what feels like hours later but in reality where just minutes, he considers if maybe he did something in a past life to deserve this punishment.
Days pass on, but the ire of the Dark Lord never abates.
It is February when the Dark Lord notices the mudblood between Potter’s group. So lost in his rage was he about the old same mirror he found during his own childhood at Hogwarts, that he even stopped paying attention and following the girl around.
March arrives and with it the notice of Sirius Black innocence, which rattles the masses with incredulity.
Voldemort, tired of putting up with children—not that adults are much better as proven by the incompetence of many of his followers cajoled into Azkaban for their own stupidity—, decides to wrap things up and plans something to distract Dumbledore away from the castle.
The opportunity presents itself in may when Dumbledore is called to the Wizengamot for some reason or another. Minerva really needs to watch what she talks about while she thinks she’s alone, Voldemort thinks amused, laughing as the woman hasn't changed a bit in the last sixty years.
Quirinus is not an entirely incompetent man, so the Dark Lord merely orders him to get into the forbidden corridor and sits back to watch and enjoy as he observes the man struggling in fear while in the grasp of the Devil snare, getting attacked by the enchanted keys, and trying to decipher—in vain—Severus’ riddle to cross the fire.
Half an hour goes by and the bored Dark Lord nudges Quirinus to go for the correct poison. They get to the final room to find, again, the dastardly thousand times cursed mirror.
Voldemort loses his grasp on sanity that has been lasting longer as time went by, getting mad like a niffler that caught sight of something shiny and unfurling a devastating attack all over the room...until one of his spells hit the mirror and it reacts in an unexpected way. The mirror shows the stone he was so covetously after for a second before the image shatters—the mirror along with it—and his spell bounces back to Quirinus’ body.
Getting a taste of his own medicine, the Dark Lord screams and leaves his host with haste. The mix of the cruciatus and the wraith of Voldemort living the body kills Quirinus instantly.
The Dark Lord hovers away in a mad rage, in pain, displeased by the failure of his endeavour, and cursing Dumbledore and all his alternative lives as he leaves the premises of Hogwarts.
If he only waited another month he would have realized, maybe, that he was recovering his senses thanks to the closeness of not one but two of his precious Horcruxes.
Chapter 7: Summer
Ok everyone, hold your knickers because this chapter just reached the ten thousand words!
I surprised myself with this one. 😅
June 18th, 1992
Harrie uses the portkey, provided by Draco in one of his letters, that takes her to a fancy restaurant in France to have lunch with the Malfoys.
Damn, I forgot to change clothes… After a few minutes of running around her apartment, she appears from her trunk with a floor-length black silk dress, with lace at the front from the waist down and bows in the chest, a dark red cloak, black ballerina flats, and her hair loose in big ringlets. Twilfit & Tattings do a noticeable better work with clothes in comparison with the things she looked on the windows while walking pass-by Madam Malkin’s.
The restaurant is big, with white walls, red carpet covers the floor and is full of people that looks ready for a ball.
Luckily, Narcissa warned her beforehand to buy a fancy dress or she would have had to use her less than appropriate clothes and feel out of place. A waitress leads her to the Malfoys’ table and leaves quickly while they greet each other. Narcissa is wearing a tight dress of creamy colour and Lucius is dressed in black robes, like Draco.
“A little bit too much, isn’t it?”
“None of that dearest, you look just fine.”
I meant all of us… “Ok.”
“I hope your meeting went well, Harrie,” Lucius comments with curiosity.
“Yes Lucius, thank you. You were right, he agreed to meet at Gringotts without a second thought.”
He hums before answering, drinking from a glass of wine, “People like to think that when they enter goblin territory they’re safe from everyone, but they tend to forget that goblins work with and for money,” he smirked deviously.
“Hmm, good thing I didn’t need their help. The Flamels are hardly the kind of people I’d like to make into enemies. If they’ve survived this long, then surely they have lots of people they’ve become acquainted along the road.”
The sly smirk flies from the blond’s face, replaced by surprise and inquisitive eyes fixed on her, Narcissa doesn’t mention anything about her comment but Harrie can pinpoint the recognition in her face, while Draco just looks confused.
They have a good time, the food is delicious and while the adults mingle and talk about their own things, the kids have fun in their own separate room prepared to entertain them.
After the event, they use a long blue ribbon to portkey to the manor and Draco drags her away to show her around. The massive building has more rooms than they can ever possibly use and is beautiful; tall windows fill the place with light making the silver portraits hanging on the walls shine, the champagne coloured theme of the walls make the manor look rich and the blue drapes appear to be waterfalls falling from the ceiling.
Hermione will flip her top when Harrie tells her about Malfoy manor, the place is nothing like the dark hidey-hole and tasteless thing the girl tried to make her picture in her mind, not that Harrie ever thought that a woman like Narcissa would enjoy living in such a place.
“Ugh! This is awful,” Harrie complains looking around the dirty dark house with a grimace.
“I don’t think we’ll have time to fix this before Sirius is released from St Mungo’s…” Remus huffs sadly.
“Nop, come on, let's check out everything. I’ll have the goblins fix the place, I’m not touching anything here more than necessary.”
Mold grows in many places and a boggart startles Moony but he takes care of it quickly and easily. Doxys make Harrie run away from the attic. A ghoul hunts the overgrown greenhouse full of dangerous plants. A ritual room is splattered in blood and smells of rot. At the library, many books attack Moony until he leaves with Harrie laughing behind him. Paintings all around the house frown at the man and look with curiosity at Harrie.
“Grandma!” Harrie hurries to the portrait hanging on a wall and the woman looks down from where she was talking to another man. The portrait description says ‘Dorea Potter née Black, 1920-1977’.
“What’s your name dear?” She asks.
“Henrietta Lilith Potter-Black. I’m James daughter.”
The woman brightens at this and they talk for a long time, giving her many funny stories about her father and grandfather until Remus comes by and tells her it's time to go.
They pass by Gringotts and Harrie arranges with Kranulk for a team of curse breakers to clean the house that is infested with dangerous magic, a group of goblins will fix the structure of the house that is in high need of repair and contracts a group of witches that work cleaning or redesigning houses. They leave the bank with easily a dozen portfolios with designs for different things the witches did before, to give her an idea of what to ask for Grimmauld Place’s renovation.
Back at Mungo's, Sirius is happy to see his daughter and hugs the stuffing out of her. They talk incessantly and Remus joins with comments here and there.
“Before I forget, I’ve got lots of designs for you to see. Grimmauld is a trash-can actually, so I talked with my account manager and arranged for a group of witches, that work designing houses, to take a look; after the curse breakers clean the place from dangerous things. I hope you don’t mind… the place was in a terrible condition,” Harrie comments shivering with disgust.
“Oh well, you better take care of that if you want, Lily was always saying that I don’t know what good taste or fashion sense is,” he barks a laugh and Remus smirks with sad eyes at the memory of their friend.
“Ok then. Do you want something special done in the house?”
“Just make sure my room is a nice Gryffindor red-gold and I’ll be content. I’m sure you’ll do a nice job deciding colours, drapes and whatever else the house may need to be changed. Take the money from the Black Vault, I’ll write a letter for you to take to the accountant at Gringotts.”
Sirius’s healer appears later that afternoon and congratulates the man on his good recovery, letting them know that he will be free to leave their care at the end of the week and leaves the parchment with the time and dates for Sirius appointment with the mind healer.
“I’m gonna look for a drink. Do you want something?” Remus asks and they shake their heads no.
When Sirius and Harrie are left alone he talks in a sombre tone, “I’ve read your inheritance test…”
Her eyes widen looking at him, “Oh...and?”
“I’m gonna ask Gringotts for one too,” he grimly looks down at his hands on his lap. “The idea that Albus did those things to you is disturbing, I was mad and enraged and had to be restrained by the healers after you left, but when I woke up after that and thought about it… If he can do that to you then what is stopping him from doing the same to others?” A snort escapes him, “I didn’t show Moony the test yet. I want us both to go to the bank and take the test together or I’m going to become a paranoid mess.”
The mind healer helped Sirius a lot, he changed from the all-time mischievous prankster and jokester to a calmer version but stil funny guy, not that he didn’t try to prank everyone and flirt with the young healers anymore, he is just getting reacquainted with his own age. He’s maturing as the memories from his stay at Azkaban begin unblurring and the amount of time passed in the place takes a real significance on his personality. Before, he didn’t have time to process that with the dementors tormenting him so often.
Remus comes back and they continue talking and joking.
June 20th, 1992
“Wand?” Asks the man behind the desk, without raising his head, in a monotonous voice, and looking as bored as he sounds. Lucius, Draco and Harrie put their wands in the pillow over the desk, in front of the man, who grabs the first one to inspect, “Elm and dragon heartstring…” the man looks up at Lucius with a welcoming and surprised smile, “Mr Malfoy, welcome back to the Ministry.”
“Hello Johnathan,” Lucius greets the young man with a handshake that the other returns swiftly.
Johnathan’s attention is diverted to the next one, once he returned Lucius’ wand. “Hawthorn and unicorn hair, congratulations on completing your first year at Hogwarts, young Malfoy,” he tells Draco and pats his shoulder.
“Thank you, Mr Thorn,” Draco answers and steps aside to stand beside Lucius.
“And the little miss. I don’t think I’ve seen you before,” the man smiles at her and she returns one of her own, looking attentively as the man raises her polished black wand in his hand.
“I wouldn’t recommend trying to use my wand, sir,” she tries to warn the man before he twirls the wood in his wrist, “It was specially crafted by the goblins.”
Johnathan stops his inspection for a moment, twirling polished wood clasped between his calloused fingers, and he smiles down at her, “Don’t worry miss, just a little spell to complete the security check,” and he raises the wand, “Hmm...I detect yew and… ebony?” Surprised, he looks down at Harrie, inspecting her too, “Holly wood too...and...something…” The man’s eyes widen, “Impossible!” He lowers the wand with the utmost care, leaving it lying on the silk pillow where Harrie put it before. “I believe, that you can go on miss,” he tells her with a perplexed look.
“John, aren’t you forgetting something?” Asks a young woman on a chair next to the man, looking at Harrie with a slightly interested frown and holding a paper before the man, reminding him of his halfway done job.
“Oh! Yes, yes. Name?” He asks expectantly.
“Henrietta Lilith Potter-Black,” she answers calmly.
“Oh…” the man exclaims relaxing, “Of course.”
“Yew, ebony and holly?” The girl asks, but John never answers her. “John!” She calls, startling the man. “The wand’s wood?” She asks with a quill ready to fill the form in front of her.
“Erm... Yew, ebony, holly, elder, acacia, dogwood, and black walnut; with a core of her own blood.” He faintly sits while the girl fills the form briskly, up to the point where he mentions the blood.
“What?!” She looks up and smiles at Harrie, “You’ve got one of those wands from the goblins? Wow…” and resumes writing down the details.
“Seven types of wood. Is that possible, father?” Draco asks looking up at Lucius with curiosity.
“It is possible, yes. The maximum amount of types of wood that can be combined, before the wood gives out and explodes if I’m not mistaken,” he tells Draco stoically, hiding the surprise under his practised mask of indifference. Never revealing though, that those kind of wands are only ever offered to the goblin’s wealthiest of patrons, as they’re impossibly hard to create.
Custom made wands crafted to the fullest of its capability, bound with the blood of the owner. No one will ever be able to use it but Harrie, unless she has children one day and one of them shares her personal characteristics to the tee, and even then, it would be highly doubtful it would work for them as their blood would still be different because of their other parent’s influence.
Lucius met only one other person who had one of those before: Orion Black.
Without any more standing around, they proceed to the elevators and get down at level 6, heading to the Portkey Office, after which stands the wide room for arrivals and departures of international portkeys.
They wait for ten minutes tops and the announcement for the portkey from New York sounds loudly around the room. Half a minute later, a group of people appear in the designated circle; Harrie stares straight away at the man that she recognises immediately as Lachlan Potter, the hair giving him away easily.
As the multitude walks away, Lachlan walks up to Harrie with a frown and a hand over his stomach, the other grabs a potion out of his pocket and behind him, grabbing the tails of his coat, walks a little elf in a clean-white pillowcase. Why is it they always use pillowcases?
“Hello,” he says smoothly and puts up a finger, “Give me a second please.” He uncorks the little vial and drinks the potion inside it, making a face afterwards. “I swear they make them worse every time,” he glares at the vial, putting it away. He pays them attention once more, raising a hand and greeting Lucius, “You must be the friend’s father,” he says with a smile that Lucius mirrors, “Lachlan Potter, a pleasure to meet you…”
“Lucius Malfoy, and likewise, Mr Potter.” Lucius then puts a hand over Draco’s shoulder, “This is my son, Draco.” While they shake hands too, Lucius gets Harrie closer with his free hand, noticing that she’s reticent to say or do anything, “And I believe this young lady is your niece,” he says giving her a little push that makes her take a step closer to Lachlan.
“Hello,” is all she feels capable of saying. What is she supposed to do now? With the Dursleys that’d be more than enough, is she supposed to do something else, say something else? She doesn’t know how to react now.
“Hello Henrietta,” Lachlan says softly, a smile taking over his face as he kneels to be at the same height as her.
“Just Harrie it’s fine,” comes out of her before she can think about it.
Lachlan’s smile brightens, if possible, and he opens his arms slowly, “Can I get a hug from my niece?”
Her cheek twitches involuntarily at the question. Narcissa and Hermione didn’t ask, they just hugged her those first times, and later Nell too just got close and put her arms around her; that third time it felt somewhat weird, unexpected certainly, and awkward as she isn’t used to them. With Sirius and Remus it was much of the same, getting hugged, but she never started the motion before. She looks down at her hands with doubt and back up at Lachlan. How does it work? Does she have to put her arms around him and that’s it? Is there a technique? Does she have to move her arms in some special way like when you cast a spell to do it correctly…?
“Oh for the love of Merlin, just hug him Harrie,” Draco exclaims with an exasperated sigh and pushes her into the older wizards waiting arms.
His embrace is not too tight but comfortable, like Padfoot’s, and warm like Narcissa’s. Her tentative arms close around his neck while he holds her patiently and the longer the hug lasts the more comfortable she feels with it. She’s slowly getting used to all the physical affection she’s receiving, but it’s still awkward for her and hard to stop herself from flinching away.
She talks with Narcissa about Grimmauld Place two days later and after hearing the disaster the mansion has become, the woman decides to help her with the decoration of the place. She grew up going to the house at every family meeting or ball and knew the building very well.
Much like with Lachlan, she offered the manor for Sirius to stay, with a stiff Lucius nodding to her side. He became reluctantly acceptant of his fate.
Sirius was more than shocked at the group that waited for him out of the hospital the day of his release and dumbly accepted Narcissa’s offer after realizing they were the family Harrie was staying with, along with someone that looks a bit like Prongs but with a sense of style as the guy dressed smartly. Remus was politely invited to visit anytime but it was obvious that Sirius preferred to keep his werewolf friend away from Lucius, much to the blond’s relief.
“Father, stop it,” Harrie chastises the man later that evening as they are in his guest room at Malfoy Manor. Sirius moved the furniture around and scanned the room up and down, looking for ‘traps’ he said, and he was leaving everything a mess. “You’re being ridiculous,” Harrie huffs crossing her arms and resting against the door at her back.
“I’m not. How did you end up friends with a Malfoy I’ll never understand.” He waves his wand under the huge bed in the middle of the room, sending various detecting spells under it.
“Draco’s fine, he was a git at first-”
“Language!” Says a woman from one of the portraits.
Harrie waves at her, it’s her grandmother Dorea, “Hey, Gran. As I was saying, Draco is a spoiled brat but he’s fine when you get to know him and Lucius has treated me just fine this last two weeks. And they are letting uncle Lachlan stay here too, not only you. He was at the Macusa dealing with criminals all the time. Don’t you think he would have noticed if the Malfoys had some kind of ulterior motive or were trying to do something to any of us by now?”
“But they’re Malfoys,” pleaded Sirius from the walk-in closet.
“I don’t care, they’re family,” Harrie glares at him when the man comes out.
“Ok… Ok, I’ll try and… behave,” he says trying to look innocent and Harrie snorts. He’s a prankster, he’ll never behave!
“Just try,” she sends a puppy-eyed look his way, “For me,” and the man melts under the cuteness.
“That's not fair,” he releases a sigh, defeated.
“Why do you call him father?” Asks one day Draco while they are having breakfast. Oddly, Remus is there too.
“Because he is my father,” she answers giving him an ‘ are you dumb?’ look.
“No, your father was James Potter,” Draco points and his finger is quickly put down as Narcissa sent a stinging hex at it.
“He was too,” Harrie mentions without explaining and laughing in her mind at the exasperated look on Draco.
Sirius and Remus laugh, knowing.
“How is that… No... You did it?” Narcissa catches the meaning of their smiles quickly.
“Yes, James didn’t have a problem with it. I’ve always known that I wouldn’t be siring any heirs in the future so…” Sirius shrugs and drinks his tea.
“That’s why Orion never disowned you!” Says Lucius with understanding a second later, “You joined the Black and Potter families. All your wealth and political power doubled with that move.” He nods agreeing with the move, “I suppose that’s why, also, no one else could claim the family rings.”
Sirius snorts “As if I care about any of that. I just did it to spite mother, she was trying to marry me to any girl available when I’m very much not interested into that set of plumbing,” and he makes dopey eyes at Remus who reddens considerably. They started back on their previous relationship, with the condition of Remus not drinking the wolfsbane poison and Sirius stopping the pranks everywhere—and yes, that includes everyone's underwear—, Remus wasn’t amused when his boxers grew an elephant trunk.
Lucius and Draco choke on their spit for different reasons, while Lachlan and Narcissa ignore the lewd look Sirius gives Remus and Harrie looks at them with a pensive finger on her chin.
“What's wrong pup?” Sirius asked worriedly.
“I just wondered… Is that acceptable in the wizarding world?” She cocks her head to the side looking at him.
“It is,” he answers with some nerves.
“Hu…” Harrie shudders remembering Petunia’s books once more Ugh! No! Bad! Don’t go there! She shakes her head trying to take the image of her father doing the nasty with Remus, “Oh god!” She whispers and hides her red face under her hands. Bad Harrie!
“Harrie?” Sirius asks concerned, “You don’t have a problem with Remus and me..?”
“What?” She raises her head at his words, “No! Of course not dad!” She reassures him, somewhat offended that he thought her that close-minded. Sirius and Remus slump in their seats relieved. “You and Moony can do whatever, I don’t really mind who or what you do. Just keep it away from me. I just remembered when I tried to read one of Petunia’s novels and it scarred me for life-”
“What kind of novel?” Wonders Sirius.
“-because I swear, that just sounds really painful. How do you do that thru there ? It boggles the mind.”
Lachlan chokes on his drink now and Remus is flaming red while Sirius gives her a twitching glance over. Lucius though gains some pink over his cheeks while he looks elsewhere and keeps a napkin over his mouth and Narcissa laughs.
“You’re too young to be reading those kinds of books young lady!” Sirius says pointing a finger in her general direction.
“I know!” She laments, “But she left it on the living-room! I was bored! I’ve never touched one of her novels after that!” She shivers once more.
“What novels is she talking about mum?” Asks Draco but Narcissa glares and shuts him up.
“When you are older, Draco,” she orders and he answers with a soft ‘Yes mum.’
“I swear, I’m not touching one of those again. I know more about human anatomy from that book than I’ve ever learned at school or wished to know about!” Even if Tom’s memories showed her that such actions can be gratifying and pleasurable, her eleven years old mind is still too young to grasp the thought of anyone doing those things with other people, much less her.
“So why do you call him father? You never answered,” Draco asks once more.
“Blood-adoption Drake,” Harrie rolls her eyes with a sigh.
As promised, Sirius takes Remus to Gringotts and has them both tested. They return late, after missing lunch, and the angry aura around them gives her all the answers she needs to know.
The rest of June passed in a blur, every day someone would visit. Greg and Vince were there any other day and they would fly and play quidditch or do other things around the manor; once time Lachlan took the lot of them—Millicent, Theo and the Patil twins included—to a muggle amusement park and all of them enjoyed the games and rides for the first time. While all of them enjoyed the rollercoaster, Millicent preferred the candies and would eat many with Harry as the girl where the only sweet obsessed kids, Padma and Parvati competed at every shooting game, and the boys learned what battle tag is.
Sometimes when Narcissa held a tea party, the women would bring their daughters. Pansy, Millicent, Daphne, Astoria, and Tracey which would then kidnap her all day. They would talk, mostly, about boys, Pansy and Milli’s favourite subject. Surprisingly, Harried liked talking with Daphne a lot as the girl was more intellectually inclined than the others.
For some reason, Pansy changed completely in her attitude towards her and it wasn’t until a random talk with Daphne that let her know what made the girl act so odd before. Apparently, she always liked Draco and thought that Harrie would steal him because she started hanging with him all the time but the signing of a marriage agreement between Lord Malfoy and Lord Greengrass for Draco and Astoria put a stop in her dreams about someday becoming Mrs Malfoy and the jealousy she felt for Harrie died.
The days that no one was visiting, kidnapping her or Draco wanting to fly, she’d sat reading at the library and talking to the many portraits hanging around the place listening to history long passed, other times she’d be concentrating in one of the highly intriguing tomes at Lucius’ office and then she would discuss her new knowledge with the man who was always willing to spare her time to talk about interesting topics of magic theory, the man was a well of knowledge in more than one theme.
Then July arrived and her lessons started.
Narcissa took up to teach her dancing, customs, manners, and posture because ‘No young lady of good standing should ever show improper behaviour or the vultures will eat her,’ and Harrie as heiress not only Potter but also Black represents both houses each time she interacts with others, to not behave with decorum was to shame her House and family. She doesn’t want to imagine what the woman will do when it becomes popular knowledge that she’s also a Peverel, Gryffindor, Evans, and heiress to Gaunt, Ravenclaw, and Slytherin. Narcissa would probably faint.
Dancing with Draco was surprisingly easy as he leads her flawlessly around the ballroom, Narcissa’s choice of music echoing on the background. Her preferred types of music were the slower songs that let you relax and enjoy the movement, the ones that required complicated steps and too many twirls became pretty tiresome.
After dancing she talks with the woman about the customs and traditions of the wizarding world in the mornings, manners at the table are corrected to her at every meal and posture during all day. Sirius laughed at her until Narcissa started pestering him too because as the new Lord Black the man has to ‘act the part’.
With Lucius—and Lachlan sometimes—, her lessons encompass laws, politics, state management, global economy/history and various types of magic. She knew the basics about laws between Tom’s memories and the books she brought that were a dry lecture but completely necessary, he commended her in the obvious effort she put about reading them. Politics, on the other hand, were a subject she barely had grasps on, and that field being his expertise it was easy to teach her, she now knows the basics of who is who, which post they hold and what all of it means.
She was shocked to know, when the matter arose, that the Malfoy’s hold a widespread web of contacts and shares of businesses even in the muggle world. So much for Dumbledore’s and many light people’s diatribe about Malfoys’ hate of anything muggle.
State management was taught to her alongside Draco, it was easy and was about pretty much what she’s been doing in the meetings with the goblins, looking after her properties and making sure they produce an income, buying shares in companies that looked profitable and passing new ideas with the goblins to see if they were possible to initiate. Like the breeding farm for snake venom and ingredient parts in the ex Gaunt shack.
The goblins took care of the inversions in the market, for now, she merely read the reports about them, and Lucius lessons helped her get a better understanding of those.
Sirius knew most of those things but was out of the loop in many others, like the state of the actual economy, so he too accompanied them after she insisted and gave him another puppy-eyed look.
Lucius was agog when one day he caught her reading a book about the dark arts, a fairly mild one in comparison to other ones she owned but, still. Her interest in all kinds of magic, not just light or neutral as was expected to most, was pretty common knowledge to the Ravenclaws and Slytherins, but it seems that Draco didn’t mention it to his parents. After she explained that she didn’t care about the obviously biased classification the ‘dark arts’ are held under by the ministry and the light society of magical Britain he was more at ease with her presence and morally questionable questions, he didn’t bother to hold back after that revelation and gave truthful answers about his thoughts in many subjects she decided to talk.
Every day that she learned something new, it showed her the number of mistakes Dumbledore would allow her to make in her ignorance. If the man ever held even a small thread of hope to save face from his mistakes in some way, then her stay with the Malfoys was quickly ending them. The further her knowledge increased, the more she hates the man from depriving her of the information needed to lead a successful life in the future. He had an obligation of teaching her all the things that Lucius was taking care of, but in no moment did the man ever get close to talk to her or even mention that he’s her magical guardian.
It doesn’t matter anymore though, she has Sirius and Lachlan now. She doesn’t need any other ‘guardians’. She can’t say more than good riddance to the old man, if he ever notices.
Sirius stay at the prison and his resulted impaired mental health, is the reason why he can’t take the Black Lordship, so he signed off guardianship to Lachlan, to protect her from Dumbledore. As he’s her father, Dumbledore can contest him about the decision, and Lachlan is related by blood, so any other option Albus could put forward would be irrelevant anyway.
One day, she’s visiting the alley when she crosses paths with a lost Neville Longbottom. The shy boy was cowering in fright from a hag that led him by the arm into the depths of the shadowed knockturn alley, uselessly fighting against the hold the older and stronger woman had him under.
In a split moment decision, she runs in their direction raising her hand and shooting a diffindo to the hag’s hand. The woman cries in pain and holds protectively her hand against her chest while Harrie grabs Neville and stands protectively in front of him, the woman glares at her hatefully and with a snotty ‘hump’ turns around and leaves. Carmilla’s favour of her is well known in the dark depths of knockturn and Harrie is grateful for it right now.
Behind her, the boy sobs quietly and clutches the hand holding him back in a death grip. Neville is a mess of tears and snoot so she takes him to Fortescue and buys him an ice-cream to try and calm him down, which he does, around fifteen minutes later.
He never ceases holding her hand, the ice-cream sits almost untouched in the table between them, he hides his head as much as he can against her shoulder.
After giving him five more minutes she clears her throat and asks in a soft voice, “Are you better now?”
He only nods but makes no other movement.
After some more minutes, she again tries to get him to talk, “Your ice-cream melted...”
Neville slowly turns his head and cleans the mess on his face with the sleeve of his t-shirt and looks at her with red cheeks, fluffy eyes and embarrassment painting his face. “Thank you,” he says roughly, his voice awkward after crying so much.
She smiles, which puts him a little more at ease, and says with the same softness, “You’re welcome.”
He rests his head against her shoulder once more and they stay in that position for a while. But Neville’s peaceful moment is abruptly interrupted by a stern looking woman that walks in their direction with a concerned and angry face. As if he knew she was looking at them, he raises his head to watch her and shivers.
“Neville!” She gets near them and starts berating the boy for getting lost while searching for any injury he might have acquired, the woman only stops to take a quick look in her direction and starts then demanding answers, “What happened?!”
“I found him being dragged by a hag into knockturn. I got the woman away from him and brought him here to calm down.”
“A hag! And how exactly did you do that?” she demands with a suspicious and incredulous look.
Harrie raises her hand and aims at the cup of melted ice-cream on the table that falls cut in two halves after a light shoots from her hand, “Like that.”
Her demeanour changes instantly in a comical manner, her surprise clear as the day and her mouth hangs open. Just like Neville’s. Harrie covers her smile with her free hand and tries to smother her giggles without success.
“There you’re, pup!” Sirius appears behind her with a wide smile and laughs at the faces of the Longbottoms “What did you do to them? Come on, don’t let me out of the joke Harrie,” he asks enthusiastically.
“Harrie used wandless magic!” Neville mumbles with wonder.
Sirius blinks once, twice and laughs loudly grabbing his stomach and wiping a fake tear from his face. “Pup you can do wandless?!” He looks at her with mirth in his eyes, “You got that from Lily, I’m sure. She could make things float all around her when she was eight. Eight! That girl was incredible. When she got angry things would explode and float around her aimlessly, it used to be quite a sight.”
“Really?” Asks a curious Augusta.
“Yes! Once, when she was pregnant, James got her so angry that she got him floating in the air without moving a muscle. He only got down once he accepted to let her prepare potions, but nothing too dangerous. She was angry because she was barely three months pregnant. James used to be so ridiculous with his overprotectiveness sometimes.” Sirius has a huge happy smile while retelling the tale.
“I’m so much like dad physically that I’ve got to have something more in common with mum that my eyes,” she shrugs and looks at Sirius, “What have I inherited from you then?”
Sirius beamed at her and put his arms around her lovingly, “My good looks and charm of course!”
She snorts but a smile is plastered on her face, “You mean your madness!”
“That too. We’re Blacks, darling!”
They laugh and Augusta shocks her head at their craziness.
July 30th, 1992
The brown bricks of Longbottom Hall stand tall and imposing in front of her, Neville’s birthday party invitation arrived the previous week, much to the surprise of the Malfoys who never received one before and Lachlan who wasn’t expecting anyone to know he was around.
The fact that the Malfoys came attached to theirs wasn’t missed.
Dowager Lady Augusta Longbottom is a no-nonsense woman, harsh and stony. She accepted her relationship with the Malfoys but that didn’t mean she liked it, as if her frown wasn't cluing enough as they arrived...
The party is attended by most of the Gryffindors. Hermione, Lavender, Parvati and obviously her twin Padma and the majority of the wizarding high-standing society like the minister and Lords/Ladies from the Wizengamot.
The Head of the DMLE Lady Amelia Bones is also a stern woman but with an obvious softness for her nice. Susan Bones is a long time friend of Neville and after he presented them she joined the group and talked to the girls.
During the day she meets a few others who were playing with Daphne’s little sister Astoria, Luna Lovegood and Gwendolyn Abbott—the nine years old cousin of Hannah Abbott—, while Jesse Abbott—Hannah’s sixteen years old brother—looked after them. Hannah is also another friend of Neville’s.
Daphne was pointing ‘important people’ to her. After she mentioned only knowing passingly about the names of some members allied with the Potters, her blond girl-friend started presenting all of them to her.
Many of them were happy to welcome her back into the wizarding world and introduced the rest of their family.
Zollie Ogden, a third-year Slytherin she saw passing by once, asked about joining their study group with her friend Adrien Pucey which Daphne explained later was actually her boyfriend and would mostly just use the place to snog. She likes Adrien so she didn’t mind.
While they walked in the direction of the tables for dinner, and Daphne introduced almost everyone to her, she also explained about other families that once used to be allied with the Potters.
At the end of the war, the Fenwick and McKinnon families were killed by Death Eaters, and later the alliance with the Prewetts became null when Molly Weasley née Prewett decided to leave the family titles to settle as dormant to protect her young children after the death of Gideon and Fabian Prewett under a Death Eaters attack, thus leaving the Prewett lordship hanging in uncertainty until her children claim it in the future.
Finally, the Wynch family lost position after Wynch & Tug Movers bankrupt with the bad management of the late Edmund Wynch as he lost the Lordship and Wizengamot seat. He was the grandson of the original Lord Wynch that allied his family to the Potters. A disappointment really, because with a bit of work, a helpful hand and firm management, the business could have been saved.
They sat for dinner and Harrie mentally thanked Narcissa for teaching her manners at the table first thing and when they finished the ballroom started to fill with dancers. Draco danced with her many times and Blaise also was good at it. Neville stepped on her toes only once but Hannah can’t say the same.
Harrie even had a dance with Lucius, Matthew Greengrass, the Minister—the man is a disgrace for his post—, Lord Davies, Lord Slughorn, Lord Bulstrode, Sirius, Lachlan and many more. Though, Sirius made a joke out of it all while they danced.
Daphne pushed her to meet the other members of families allied to the Potters afterwards. Horace Slughorn she didn’t mind much as he’s the commonly must know in the wizarding directory. Lord Slughorn is a man in his fifties and the ex-potions-master from Hogwarts. He’s a famous man thanks to his vast amount of contacts between the most known faces from the wizarding world in the last thirty years, from quidditch players to the last Minister and underground questionable characters, he knows them all.
She used the opportunity to talk to the man the most and got an invite to his house whenever she wanted, after she showed appreciation for the art of potion making, getting close to him would be very useful if she ever needed to make use of his connections.
All in all, the day was interesting, Neville looked tired but satisfied at the end of it.
She drops in her bed bonelessly that night and remembers luckily half the names of the people she met. With a sigh, she focuses then on her occlumency, time to sort out her day’s memories before sleeping.
July 31st, 1992
“Happy birthday Harrie!”
A blur of brown, black and blue tackles her and she pats her friend in the back. Hermione anxiously shoves a little red box with a golden bow in her hand which she opens to find a beautiful silver chain and a white lily with a green emerald in the center.
“Thanks, Mione!” She breathlessly hugs her friend, “It’s beautiful.”
Their study group will spend the day at Diagon Alley—plus Astoria and Luna—buying the things for their school year as the letters arrived that morning. Neville, Hannah, Susan, Zollie, Cho, Marietta and Rae Marchbanks—a seventh year that befriended Harrie at Neville’s party—were also there.
Sirius and Remus awoke her that morning with a box full of notes with their pranks spells and photos from their Hogwarts years and then in the meeting at the alley she received many more presents. Neville gave her a book about many deadly and poisonous plants. Vince and Greg bought between them a voucher for Ɠ20 to spend at Honeydukes. Pansy gifted her a girly set of underwear with frills and ribbons in pink and white. Daphne and Tori's gift was a set of silk royal blue gloves and a fluffy scarf. Blaise gave her black pearls earrings and passed her mother’s present, a beautiful pin for her cloak with the form of black air-waves that shone with little gems inside it, the needle was hollow and could hold something for ‘protection’ which from the Black Widow meant that if she ever needed to poison someone and made it look inconspicuous she’d be prepared. Theo gave her a book on the Dark Arts Theory with a smile. Smooth Theo, really — not — . Hannah and Susan gifted her with a pair of black heels and a white cloak respectively. Luna gave her a yearly subscription to The Quibbler.
Finally, Cissa gave her black diamonds earrings, Lucius a matching necklace with a tear-shaped black diamond, and Draco a silver hairpin in the form of a rose. Black diamonds are the designated Black family gems after all.
And she got lots of chocolate and sweets from many others, some of which she knew nothing about.
The adults left the kids to wander and the group finished buying things four hours later, at Obscurus books, because Flourish and Blotts was packed. Some pompous blonde was signing his books, most of the girls saying they were real deeds, she thought they were mostly fiction or hallucinations of the man after receiving an abridged version of them. Only the boys and the Slytherin girls agreed with her.
They're about to separate and go back to their homes when Lucius makes a fool of himself fighting the Weasley patriarch, after putting an interesting book in the little ginger girl’s cauldron. Thanks to the fight and confusion she recovered the very familiar book.
Later that night she walks into Lucius study and knocks on the door waiting for the ‘Enter.’
“You wanted to talk, Harrie?” Asks Lucius from his desk finishing singing a parchment.
“Do you fear Voldemort, Lucius?” Harrie asks bluntly and stares at him while he gasps and clutches his left arm rubbing off the sudden pain that shot through his flesh, “I mean, I’ve heard the stories, read them too, it wouldn't surprise me with the things he did. So, do you fear him?” She slowly walks around the desk to the man and admires his face scrunched in pain, “Do you fear Voldemort? ” She whispers ever so slowly while she raises the sleeve of his shirt to reveal the grey skull and snake and he flinches unconsciously.
“Everyone wise enough fears him,” he answers in a whisper, shocked and awed at the aura coming off of the little girl.
Harrie raises her head and looks him in the eyes while reaching for the leather bound diary in her pocket, “Then why did you leave this in the cauldron of the little Weasley girl? Shouldn't you take better care for the things your master entrusted you with, Lucius?” The blond tries to snatch the diary from her hand but fails when she freezes his body in place, wandlessly.
“What...!? How? That’s dangerous Harrie!” He tries to look and sound reproachful but fails.
“Do you know what this is?” She opens the diary passing the blank pages in a lazy manner over the desk.
“A diary?” The man asks confused and observes her worriedly, he sweats knowing the danger of managing a dark artefact so recklessly even if he isn’t sure what it is exactly.
“No, nothing as simple as that,” the corners of her mouth raise a little. “This-” she pokes the cover with a finger, “is the Dark Lord's Horcrux Lucius and you almost lost it to that Weasley brat!”
Lord Malfoy gasps in recognition and loses all colour from his face, fainting. The painting of his father's behind him looks enraptured the happenings in the office and a bit concerned with his son’s stupid decision.
The man comes back with a start after she enervates him and hastily stands to prepare a drink from his decanter in a hurried mess, to sit a moment later. Meanwhile, Abraxas recovered from the shock in his canvas too.
After finishing his drink Lucius speaks, “How?”
“How do I know what this is? How do I know he gave it to you? Or how do I know about such magic when you don't have books about them?” she asked mischievously.
“My son, you're a twat.” Abraxas comments from behind him with a face-palm that makes Harrie laugh and Lucius huffs and prepares another drink giving Harrie concerned looks because of the incredibly dangerous book on her hand and the mystery the girl is resulting to be.
“All of them,” he finally says, “You're so young. How do you know any of that?”
“Well, considering that I'm also one and have the man's memories until he ‘died’, does it really surprises you?” She asks nonchalantly and giggles as the men watches her with nervous ticks on their expressions. “I like you and your family Lucius, don't do moronic things that would lead you to an early grave when Tom's back.”
“What!? Back!?” He bellows startled.
Harrie snorts at him “Didn't I just told you about his Horcrux? Seriously, catch up,” Abraxas facepalms again. “He's going to be back, for sure. When? I don't know yet but I'm sure of it and when that happens I'm gonna make sure that he knows I don't give a shit about the war or any petty prophecy delivered by a lowlife drunk and pathetic excuse of a witch who can’t leave her own tower at the risk of falling and breaking her neck because she’s always inebriated. And to better leave me and my family alone, or what's left of it, so don't muck it up again Lucius. If something happens to my cousins because of you I'll show you how much knowledge I've gained from your Lord, suffice to say, you won’t enjoy it.” She stops at the door while leaving and watches the frightened man “I like you, Lucius, but you surely understand how much family means to an orphan?” He nods, “Good. Oh and don't mention this to anyone or Voldie will get mad that his secret is not so secret anymore.”
“I don't have a death wish…”
“Didn't look like that this morning,” she singsongs and leaves.
“You probably own that little girl your life now, Tom was never known for his mercy…”
“I remember father,” Lucius shivers and takes another swing of fire-whiskey. Now he understands how the little girl can be so much more intelligent than her peers, with the memories of a seventy years old Dark Lord in her mind it’s no longer any wonder that she knows and is able to understand so much. “Merlin’s hairy balls… Does she have all his memories!?” If she does then she knows of his indiscretions with other women… and men. Damn.
“Mind you, she said she likes you, don’t act like a twat again son. Not every day you’re given the opportunity to look after two of Tom’s most valuable possessions.” Abraxas remarks the word ‘two’ making Lucius realize her words.
“Merlin, if anything happens to her I’m a dead man!” That train of thought sobers up Lucius, “I need to talk to Draco and Narcissa… or not, not Cissa, she already looks after the girl so there’s no need.”
Abraxas falls asleep in the canvas while Lucius leaves the office falling over himself and mumbling nervously while going in search of his son, with any luck he’d be still awake.
Harrie’s family and he’s always taught his son that family is important, it’s in his best interest to make his son realize how much she’s welcomed in theirs.
After a few days of awkwardness from Lucius, and Cissa giving him the stink eye for acting so weird to Harrie, he went back to normal. If Sirius or Remus noted anything different then they decided not to mention it. Draco though, gave her contemplative looks Lachlan seem to be amused by their actions for some reason.
Hello, I’m Tom. What is your name?
How did you come by this diary, Henrietta?
Lucius made a mistake so I decided to help him.
What mistake, if I may ask?
He almost lost you to a little witch whose family is really close to Dumbledore.
Well, thank you for that Henrietta, it seems we’re going to become good acquaintances.
We’re already more than that, Tom.
Who are you exactly, Henrietta? And how is it we are so close as you say?
Henrietta Lilith Potter Black is my name, and we are close because you and I are but two pieces of a whole, my dear brother Horcrux.
She was feeling mischievous when she wrote the first time to Tom. His shocked reaction to her existence was just what she was expecting, Sirius was rubbing off on her lately with his pranks.
Tom wanted to know everything about her after that first talk, so he raised his magic from the leather diary and brushed against her. The warmth of the Horcrux inside her grew and she tingled all over, the reaction was instantaneous, in a shocking second the mental link between both halves of the souls snapped into existence and her memories flowed to the piece of soul bound to the diary while she relieved with more accuracy the early years of the then young Dark Lord.
When she consciously moved again she noticed that she was lying on the carpet at the floor, grumbling because of the awkward position and pain on her muscles. She rises to her feet, stumbling in the process as the sudden rush of blood made her dizzy. Her head pounds in pain and the link to the soul shard into the diary lets her know that he too feels a headache forming… However that is possible, she has no idea.
She asks an elf for a headache potion and sits back on her desk after drinking the disgusting concoction. There was something new on the page waiting for her, she notices.
I need something from you, Harrie.
She writes without much enthusiasm, the headache barely receding, her head still feels like a herd of hippogriffs just step on it.
I know that after all I did… Voldemort did, to you and your family. I know you may not like this much but… help me. That’s not what I wanted when I decided to make a better place of the Wizarding World. Blood-purists were always a mean to an end not the actual goal of my campaign. He looks mad in the memories of the last years. Voldemort is lost and insane. Help me fix myself. Help us.
And then the headache seems unimportant compared to what is being asked of her.
“This is the last thing I expected...” she mumbled, looking down at the diary and thinking what to do. As if feeling her reticence or surprise, Tom explains further:
I’ve seen your memories Harrie. I know what that is like, you know what my own childhood was like. My campaign was meant to help others like us. Orphans. It was about integration, teaching the muggleborn the culture of the wizards so they could understand and not just judge, it was about creating a primary school and a system to take children from abusive environments. I wanted to take our world into a new era with all of the benefits from the muggles creations and modernize some of the wizards old and outdated views of things. All I wanted was to make things better, I don’t understand what happened.
I know what happened.
The question was as much a reaction to her knowing about it and not him, as it was a demand to get an answer.
You’ve seen it, the Horcruxes drove you, him, mad. After the locket and the cup, Voldemort started killing indiscriminately and senselessly. I know that the only reason you created the first one was an accident, Myrtle wasn’t supposed to be there. But what about the others?
Riddle deserved it!
He did, but you could’ve at least tried to get answers from him. And what did you do? Kill Riddle and his parents in cold blood. And what about Hepzibah Smith? She trusted Tom Riddle and look at how her life ended when using her fondness in his favour would’ve been more useful. What about the whore that had the bad luck of crossing paths with a man that held only so little of his soul and sanity? If I’m going to help then we’ll do an agreement.
… What do you want?
For now, I just want to be left alone and away from the war, I’ve got more than enough violence in my life as it is. I’ll help you as I can, but you’ll leave me and mine out of your temper tantrum.
A temper tantrum!
Will you tell me that’s not what it looks like? He leaves to travel the world and 10 years later is back, insane, looks like a snake shedding its skin and expects everyone to obey his whims as if he is the king or something. And when people don’t do as he expects? He kills them, tortures them or just treats them as trash for nothing.
She doesn’t get a response for a long time, but she can feel his mind thinking about her request by the slim connection that formed when their magic entered in contact.
Think about it.
August goes by much too quickly and in the end, Tom accepted her conditions but made no promise because he wasn’t sure if his memories would be shared with the main soul as they had with Harrie, and she knows she can’t ask more from him than that he tries.
She intends to search for information about Horcruxes, but finds absolutely nothing. Not even when she sneaks out of the manor alone and visits Knockturn Alley.
One day she cuts her finger while preparing a quill to write to Tom and a drop of blood falls over the diary’s open pages, she feels then, how a small amount of her magic goes into it. Almost like smoke, a shadow starts to take form and seconds later Tom is there, in front of her, and seems as surprised about that happening as Harrie is.
He’s tall, dressed in his Hogwarts garments and has alluring bright red eyes. She wills her train of thoughts to get a grip, occlumency shields rise tightly in place making her focus sharp, a traitorous blush wants to rise when she notices they’re staring at each other.
Tom raises an eyebrow and she glares.
“Did no one taught you that is rude to stare?”
And damn her teenage body and hormones to hell and back, that smooth baritone voice makes her stomach feel funny.
She ignores the knowing smirk from him and asks, “How did this happen?” And looks down at the drop of blood… or where it should be a drop of blood on the open diary at the table.
“No idea,” he tries to grab the leather book but his hand passes right through it.
They both stare at the hand.
“Weird…” he whispers.
Harrie shrugs and walks to the window to sit under the last rays of sun of the day. “So, I didn’t find anything, again,” she grumbles and looks at Tom who is beside her, watching the peacocks outside being chased by her father in his animagus form.
“This actually gives us a better chance at getting any information that could be useful.”
“How so?” She snorts as the black dog outside falls into the lake, “He gets in the house dripping water and mud and Cissy will kill him.”
Tom hums in acknowledgement, “I can now accompany you to the alley, I can get Borgin to look for books for me with a bit of incentive. There are also those places where you’re too young to be left into that I can ask people about the information.”
“They’re not going to let you into those places while you wear Hogwarts’ uniform,” she says, pointing the school crest on his chest.
A second later his appearance changes and he stands in a tailored black suit and oxfords, hair neatly parted to one side and smirking smugly to her.
“If only dressing were as simple as that,” she grumbles and glares.
A bark sounds on the other side of her door and she panics standing and trying to shove Tom out of the way without luck.
“Get out of here!” She furiously whispers, “Padfoot can’t see you or he’ll kill me for having a male stranger in my room.”
“How do you propose I do that?” He asks unhelpfully.
In her panic, she tries cutting the magic flow to the diary, without expecting it to work, and Tom disappears with a shocked look on his face. She stands near the window when she hears Cissa screaming to Padfoot and the dog whines and raps against the door more insistently. Padfoot barks, whines, and runs away, hurried steps get close and the door opens.
“Ah, good thing you didn’t let him in, he's all dirty. Don’t come out until I have the elves clean the mess dear.”
She agrees, hiding her breathless and nervous voice as best she can and Cissa leaves to hunt her father away. She lets a relieved sigh out and restores the flow of magic to the diary.
“That was utterly abhorrent,” Tom said with a grimace as he reappears in the room.
“When you cut our connection, it felt like I was losing my magic…”
“Uh… dude, it was my magic leaving, not yours.”
“Your language is appealing Harrie.”
With a shrug, she says “Deal with it.”
She ignores the glare and starts talking about her next escapade to knockturn and planning which places they will need to visit.
Summer ends with a sleepover of the girls at Greengrass manor. Daphne, Astoria, Pansy, Luna, Hannah, Susan, Tracey, Millicent, Hermione, Lavender, the Patil twins and Amanda stayed the 29 and 30 getting to know each other, dressing up, trying makeovers and sharing childhood stories, talking about boys and the future, or in the case of Hannah about her marriage contract with Neville which they knew nothing about and asking lots of questions that she answered enthusiastically and finally they planned for the upcoming years at Hogwarts to do more sleepovers.
Until then Pansy was awkward with the group, sometimes too silent and sometimes too loud, arguing with everyone or talking to no one. The sleepover ended that after she warmed up to them. Until then, she wasn’t completely over her jealousy of Harrie or Astoria because of her marriage agreement with Draco.
On the morning of the thirty-first, the girls went back home to prepare their trunks to go to Hogwarts once more, and in the case of Luna, for the first time.
That night she rested in bed and meditated. Her mindscape was adapting to the form of a black hole that absorbs everything in the direction of a deceiving light in the center of it, protected with the memory of excruciating pain—akin to a thousand cruciatus curses—put together and delivered by the memories of one Dark Lord undergoing the pains of tearing pieces of his soul to make his Horcruxes.
The only person capable of bypassing her mind shields will be Voldemort, the connection between their minds because of his Horcrux will be interesting to test once the man recovers his body some time. Considering the Horcrux is protected under the black hole in which she based her ultimate defence, Voldemort can access all of her mind. If anyone who fears or hates the man learns that she is one of the anchors that stops him from properly dying, then they would seek her destruction, so a little drawback like that it’s worth the rest of the benefits.
Most of her memories are protected in the darkness surrounding the black hole. Many different Lovecraftian Horrors type of creatures serve as vessels—and at the same time the protectors—of her memories and knowledge, designated to react to any kind of interfering presence inside of her that gets close to her ‘darkness’. The white space surrounding all of that is solely dedicated to holding her harmless memories, which are encased in bubble-like spheres that float around aimlessly.
Chapter 8: To tickle a sleeping dragon...
September 4th, 1992
“Motherfucker!” Harrie’s loud scream bounces off the walls of the stone chamber as she falls with her back on the damp floor. Great now I’ve ruined my clothes, she thinks standing up and looking around her. How could I forget about the cleaning spell?
§Harrie!?§ A big snake slithers nearby when she enters the Chamber properly, raises her head and a forked black tongue appears from her mouth, tickling Harrie.
§Hey Maud!§ Harrie hugs the big basilisk, patting her sides, §I brought a friend with me!§
§Harrie? Where’s Tom? I can smell him.§ The snake shakes her tongue all around her, tickling Harrie who laughs.
§Calm down, he’s right here,§ she puts the leather diary on a part of the floor that is dry and cuts her palm with a mild diffindo , letting the blood drip in the middle of the blank pages.
The ginormous snake hisses in pleasure at the sight of Tom, who rises like a ghost from the diary and greets Maudueennie. He’s intangible still, but now at least he can talk with Salazar’s old pet besides Harrie. He said he was becoming mad with boredom inside the diary, alone for the last fifty plus years and asked for help in that regard, so Harrie brought him along to Hogwarts. The blood would link them and give Tom enough magic to move small objects, like books in Salazar’s library, so he can entertain himself while Harrie is attending classes or Maud leaves to feed at the Forbidden Forest.
Taking into account that Tom is just another part of Voldemort, she was more than a bit worried about helping him, in the end she agreed to it because she could feel the truth through their magical link, when he said that he was horrified of what became of him as of late and was, originally, nothing like the monster raving rampant in the late 1980s, the feeling of disgust was clear through their bond. The connection between the piece of soul she carries on her fringe and the piece lodged into the diary lets her see beyond the mask Tom usually uses and she can feel his emotions if she focuses enough.
“Ok then, I’ve got classes to attend, see you later Tom.”
“Thank you, Harrie.”
§Bye Maudueennie, I’ll be back later!§
§Bring another cow, little one.§
After a period with Binns, Harrie and her friends arrive at the study room to find Hermione and her classmates sitting at one of the tables with the snakes in another, Hermione furiously passes the pages of the DADA books and takes notes on her muggle notebook with her free hand.
“Hey, guys,” Harry greets sitting beside Draco “What’s up with Mione?”
“That shameful excuse of a wizard, who is our DADA teacher this year, released a bunch of doxys on the classroom today. They made a mess of everything and the man had to run to hide in his office because he obviously can’t deal with them and left us to take care of the little demons!” Daphne tells her angrily. “Granger was trying to excuse the clown’s actions and I gave her some pointers about the so proclaimed hero’s mistakes from the books that don’t add up. She started taking notes from the books since tea time. By the end of the day, I’m sure she’ll discover the kind of fraud that peacock is.”
“She was really excited about Lockhart, for some reason,” Harrie says with a shrug. She doesn’t understand how people can believe in the ridiculous stories from those clearly fictional books.
The Gryffindors sit with them after a disgruntled Hermione starts showing signs of stress, they want to avoid the explosion that is sure to happen any moment now.
“Merlin, I can’t believe I thought that man was anything but a liar,” comments Lavender lacking her usual enthusiasm.
“We warned you. We had a class with him on Tuesday and he did the doxys then too,” Amanda points at them out loud and Daphne looks incredulously at her.
“Amanda, they were fans of the guy then. Fans tend to ignore what they don’t like about their idols and use the saying ‘out of sight, out of mind’ as a rule. Why do you think I hate my celebrity status so much?” Harrie scoffs.
“Hey!” The Gryffindors and Hufflepuffs, the latter which just arrived, exclaimed. Neville, Hannah, and Susan coming for the first time to their room.
They are clearly not used to being near Slytherins just because they can and keep mostly to themselves. When Cho and Marietta visited for an hour before lunch, only then, they started to relax and talk more freely with others.
“What is wrong with Granger?” Cho asks a while later.
“She’s freaking out because she just discovered that her idol is a fraud.” Draco tried to hide a snicker behind Harrie and failed.
“Who?” Marietta enthusiastically starts gossiping with Lavender and Parvati.
“She’s going to be a pain to live with, more than usual, thanks to Daphne,” grumbles Nott with a glare in said girl’s direction.
Daphne flips him the bird and continues talking with Tracey, ignoring the boy.
After lunch, when the two older Ravens are gone, Zollie Ogden and Adrien Pucey arrive.
“Hey, Harrie!” Adrien greets, “Zollie said it’s ok to come here together, right?”
“Yeah sure, if the others don’t have a problem with it,” everyone around them nods in agreement with this. “Hi, Zollie!”
“Hi, Harrie,” the girl smiles and with a soft thanks to the others, tugs his boyfriend in the direction of the stone sitting benches nearby.
“But, you know the rules Pucey!” Harrie points her little finger at him.
“Rules?” Zollie asks her boyfriend.
“No disturbing the studying people, no fighting, no M word and if you aren’t busy you may be asked for help which is up to you to do it,” he shrugs and starts avidly kissing the more than enthusiastic girl on his arms.
Harrie stands to go were Hannah and Susan sit calling for her help. The couple makes out heartedly and causes the younger kids around to flush crimson at their shameless display. The Gryffindors and Slytherins flush at the unexpected sight later, they were in class when the couple first arrived. Rae also enters the room, after the change of period, and catcalls at them.
“Wow Pucey, one must think you didn’t just have dinner!” The youngest Marchbanks of the family comments accompanied by a loud whistle from Cedric Diggory that appeared behind her.
Pucey gave them both an unimpressed wave and kept kissing his girlfriend.
“Hello, kiddies!” Rae smiles brightly at them, “Hope you don’t mind that I’ve brought Cedric along, he needs a few pointers in runes.”
They didn’t have a problem with it and the seventh and third year sat at a table with their books.
“How many people know about this place Harrie?” Asked a while later a shy Neville from her right.
“All the people you can see here, along with Cho and Marietta who are in class. Why?”
“It’s nothing, I just thought it was a study group for our year only.”
“Well, it started like that. At the beginning Padma, Amanda and I planned to form a group to regularly study together, with people that understood fully other subjects that they didn’t so as to get help. Padma doesn’t like or understands much of herbology you see.” She sees Nev nod and continues, “Then Draco asked about it, Vince and Greg are bad at everything but history weirdly enough, so I invited them and the other guys and Milli came too. After that Pucey found the place when he was lost down here last year, the Slytherin girls followed Draco one day and I invited Cho and Marietta to come. At your birthday, the girls invited Zollie when she asked and also Rae because Hermione liked her and we didn’t have a problem so…” Harrie shrugged. “You saw that Diggory came with Rae. It’s just us for now, maybe there’ll be more people coming, maybe not. Who knows?”
“Neville?” He looks up and Padma is there, “Can you help me with this?” She asks shyly with her last herbology essay in hands, with merely a paragraph on it. “I don’t know what else to put in it,” she mumbled, frowning at the parchment.
“Sure Padma,” he answers softly.
“I wonder where is Luna though…” Harrie mumbles pensively and leaves the chair in front of Neville so Padma sits there. “I’ll go with Rae and Diggory, I really like runes so I’ll see if they don’t mind me sitting around. Bye guys.”
September 27th, 1992
After a long Sunday of finishing essays, a tired Harrie goes down to Salazar’s chamber, to relax and talk with her snake-friend and Tom.
Tom ghostly figure sits in the lounge at Slytherin’s personal office in the chambers, reading one of the few books he didn’t finish in his years at Hogwarts when she arrives there.
It’s interesting how Tom is capable of remembering, even if it feels detached, all that happened to Voldemort after they separated. He says that he has the memories but lacks the feelings attached to them, much like how she can ‘see’ the memories too, but knows they aren’t hers. After they exchanged their memories she seems to have gained more knowledge too, some of the things Voldemort read became clearer after the connection between the two soul shards formed.
She recognizes the book as one mildly interesting, so she leaves him along and searches for Maud who lies stretching her large body along the curve of the pool in the middle of the big principal room. Harrie sits atop the thousand years old basilisk and starts chatting with her.
The snake is uncannily intelligent, the magic from her bond to the school above them gives her that extra that her cousins commonly lack. She’s also a very cheery snake that likes the juicy acromantulas from the forest and sleeps most of the day like a cat.
§Why Maudueennie? I’ve never heard of a name like that before,§ asks Harrie lying flat over the basilisk's head.
§Salazar thought about my name for a long while, he wanted something fitting and I wanted something unique,§ the big mass of scales and muscles shifts under her when the snake coils under the patch of sun, after having slithered outside the chamber a while ago, §Maud means ‘mighty battle maiden’ and Queenie means ‘Queen,’ so he mixed both names to get mine. I like how I’m the only one with that name.§
§Mighty battle maiden… How is that fitting?§ Harrie rolls, hugging the cold scales under her and avoiding the direct sun on her face.
§It is because I’m one of Hogwarts’ protectors. When Rowena, Godric, Helga, and Sal created the school, many first generations younglings, the ones you call muggle-borns now, arrived from families that feared their gift of magic. In the hopes of finding refuge from their violent relatives, they sometimes arrived with nothing but their clothes. The witch burnings run rampant for hundreds of years and they tried to create a safe haven for many witches and wizards that until then had to live in self-imposed isolation in fear of being burned alive just for the gift lady magic bestowed upon them. During the years I had to help many times in the defence of the castle and its guests because a horde of aggressive and fearful humans tried to wipe the devils from the earth, or so they claimed. When Sal wasn’t around, it would be then Godric's responsibility to awake Áedán to roast the fiends, since the chambers will only ever open for those talking my language.§
§Wait, who? Godric also had a friend, as Sal had you?§
§Dunbhshláine Áedán, yes. Godric’s dragon familiar.§
With a gasp, Harrie bolts upright and her eyes bulge, §Merlin, a dragon!?§
§Yes… but it’s a shame he’s asleep. I haven’t got a partner to play with since Godric died and Áedán succumbed to the dreams. I miss hunting with my brother.”
Harrie notices the sad tone of voice of her friend and pats the snake’s head with consoling words wondering if she could help her in some way…
§What do you mean when you say that he’s dreaming? Is he still alive? I thought familiars die along with their bonded...§
§Yes, by all means, Áedán should have died alongside Godric. but Rowena put him under a spell. The woman was always the most intelligent of them all and she discovered a way of passing the bond to someone of Godric’s bloodline,§ then Maud hisses sadly. §But his son was an egotistical and resentful man, they never allowed Godric’s son to learn about the ritual to awake Áedán. After Godric’s wife died, his son became resentful to the muggles and would have had them all dead in no time with the familiar bond allowing him to lead Áedán’s actions.§
§But the history books says that Godric’s son was a good man. Actually, it’s Salazar’s son the one who supposedly hated muggles. How come they got that mixed up?”
§That is because both Sal’s and Godric’s children hated each other. Rodrick, Godric’s son, wanted for many years to marry Selene, Sal’s granddaughter.§
§My ancestor?§ Harrie wonder out loud.
§Indeed. But she disliked how hateful Rodrick was and always rejected his advances until finally, she told her father to accept a contract with a Peverell which she liked.§
§So Rodrick wasn’t a nice man at all.”
§He wasn’t, and with the rejection of Selene, he became even worse. So, after so many decades of building a safe place for magicals and hiding their existence from the muggles, Godric's son would have ruined it all by taking his frustrations on the muggles, making them realize that magical people wasn’t as wiped out as they were led to believe. Poor brother’s been sleeping for over nine hundred years.§
§Why was Rodrick so spiteful?§
§Because the muggles killed Rodrick’s twin brother while he helped three muggle-born siblings escape their abusive family.”
Harrie shocks her head, she’s capable to understand the dislike for muggles capable of mistreating kids—magical or not—only for their differences, but hating all of them is irrational. Not even Voldemort’s memories of exorcism and beatings at the hands of muggles were able to change her views on that.
§After Rowena and Helga passed away the other hatchlings never bothered to learn of the many things they left for them, and to this day, the only ones that came back asking about any of their secrets are Corvinus, then Tom and now you.§
§Maud if one of Godric’s descendants survived to this day would that mean that they could awake Áedán?§
§Yes, but if there is one still alive, no one ever bothered to claim the Gryffindor name or access to the family magic. If they did, then they should know about the family history, or they did know and didn’t want to acknowledge him. Godric always worried about Áeldán’s future, he would talk with Sal about it all the time, hiding the existence of Áedán from the muggles became difficult in the last years before he died and always came down here to talk with him
§Maud...§ The snake looks questioningly where Harrie stands by her side kicking rocks, §I told you I’m heiress Ravenclaw, Slytherin and Gaunt like Tom, right?§ The snake hisses yes and Harrie throws the bomb, §But, my complete name is Henrietta Lilith Potter-Black-Evans-Peverell-Gryffindor. I can wake him,§ she smiles brightly to the basilisk that hisses in happiness.
Harrie wonders why the founders never told her about Áedán in her many visits down to the chamber…
October 4th, 1992
Whit classes and all of their group’s self-study in DADA, Harrie doesn’t find time during the week to visit, so it’s Sunday again when she goes down to the chamber once more. After asking what she needs to do to awake Godric’s dragon, all of them go out to the forbidden forest.
Maudueennie lays curled to the side of the Chambers entrance and looks at the clearing in front of them, a few steps in front of her stands Tom, Harrie sits on her haunches with Fawkes to her left and the Gryffindor grimoire in her lap in the middle of the wide clearing, some meters away from them.
Apparently, Áedán is hidden in a cave under the clearing, she has to chant a few phrases in a mix of Gaelic, Irish, English, and Latin three times and he will awake.
Fawkes then, another protector and most definitely not Dumbles familiar, will heal the dragon with his tears.
Hogwarts motto of ‘Draco dormiens nunquam titillandus’ is based on Áedán and Godric. The man had to have limbs reattached many times after waking the dragon from a peaceful nap, that he did it by throwing water most of the times at the beast didn’t help a bit. Maud is good at storytelling, she always makes her laugh.
She finishes chanting and immediately a rumble from the earth makes her wobble standing on her feet, Conroy didn’t bother to warn her about the earth opening under her beforehand, the hat merely laughs all the way down while Fawkes flies and lands on her belly after she lands heavily on something warm.
The soft scales under her contract and a roar of deafening levels surge a moment later. She rubs her ringing ears while Conroy keeps laughing loudly and Fawkes cries over Áedán’s widely open jaw, the new bond completes quickly after she lets the blood fall from her sliced palm in the dragon’s mouth.
Áedán is really big—easily the size of Gringotts—, his scales are iridescent black and blue, the slitted eyes are green as hers, the claws are long and sharp, his long tail is full of spikes and his voice is like that of a long-time smoker, deep and rough. Snatching her hand away from the white sharp fangs, too many stories of Godric losing limbs making her wary, she stands admiring the enormous beautiful beast in front of her.
“Hey...umm...Hello, Dubhsh láine Áedán-” the dragon sniffs her and releases a coppery and warm breath in her face “-I’m Henrietta Lilith Potter-Black-Evans-Peverell-Gryffindor. Please don’t eat me,” a loud rumble reverberates in the dragon's throat and echoes around the cave, his laughing.
Don’t fret my friend, if Conroy deems you worthy of trust as to pass the knowledge of my awakening then you’re safe with me.
Stupid hat, a warning would’ve been useful, here I am fretting over meeting a ginormous dragon and almost peeing myself. Gee thanks for the help, Conroy.
Hahaha! A deep laugh reverberates in her mind, I see that he’s as much of a hassle, as usual, Conroy always made Godric renege.
Hmm… you can hear my thoughts?
Yes, is an effect of the bond. But don’t worry, you can keep your thoughts to yourself with practice in the mind’s magic.
Do you mean occlumency?
If that is the name they use for it these days. What does this occlumency entail?
Is the ability to protect the mind against legilimency, which is the ability to enter other minds, it’s also useful to organize and memorize things easier.
Indeed, that is what I meant. Are you proficient in this branch of magic, little one?
I am. The pass last years I’ve dedicated lots of hours to perfect it.
Then you only have to block me, if I find myself in need of reaching your mind then you’ll feel the pressure in your shields, likewise if you need to reach me.
“Harrie it’s getting late. You have classes tomorrow,” comes the soft voice of Tom from the top of the cave.
“Coming!” How are we getting out of here?
Hold to the spikes on my shoulders. Áedán lowers his massive body to the floor and Harrie climbs, holding tightly to the spikes. We’ll be outside in a moment.
The dragon climbs the wall, leaving big and deep indentations in the rock and in a matter of seconds they are outside and Maudueennie slithers near them to enthusiastically talk to her brother. Conroy sits on Maud’s head and Fawkes trills from his perch in a tree, the sight out of a muggle fairy tales book.
§Thanks Harrie!§ Maud hisses while curling around the dragon.
§How long it’s been, my friend? You’re more amicable than I remember!§ The dragon laughs roughly and shoves his head against hers.
§Don’t start or I’ll bite you! I’ve been alone for the last fifty years, I’ve been so bored that I missed you!”
She leaves the forest hearing the echo of Tom’s laugh and enters the secret passage leading to the Chamber of Secrets and Hogwarts, good thing it is Sunday or she’d have to explain where she went all day to the professors. Now Maud and Tom will have another companion during the long hours she can’t visit.
October 31st, 1992
Reading on books about ghosts and how they’re created or bound in certain ways made her curious about them. They’re dead but at the same time are not, they’re cold but you can’t touch them, they eat but where do they get the food from? Are ghosts really just shadows and impressions of their once mortal and living counterparts or are they just residing in another plane of existence that can be seen by witches and wizards?
Her curiosity is what leads her to accept the invitation from the Gryffindor ghost, Sir Nicholas as he prefers to be addressed as, to his death day party.
“-and you can’t participate in this hunt because of that tiny bit of flesh between your head and body? That’s ridiculous!” Harrie exclaims with sympathy.
The room in which the celebration is taking place is in one of the unused halls of the castle, the halls leading to the place were almost as dusty and covered in cobwebs as the first time that she went looking for the new study room. The lights are bluebells, the food stinks in many states of decomposition, the mood of most of the ghost is hauntingly depressing, Lockhart’s garish robes harm her eyes and his attitude makes the ghosts turn away from the man with varying grades of disgust.
“That’s what I say!” Sir Nicholas agrees and harrumphs, “Such a tiny bit of flesh, what does it matter really?”
“Maybe you should cut it,” Harrie adds and the startled widening of the ghost's eyes makes her continue, “I’ve seen the Baron with his sword, maybe he can do it. You should ask and next time, when the hunts take place, no one will deny you.”
“Why, that’s the best idea I’ve ever heard! You’re really a genius my dear girl, there’s no wonder many professors are so taken with you. I’m gonna ask him now, it's my dead day, he can’t possibly act grumpy with me today. Baron. Baron! I need your help with something!”
Sir Nicholas floats away and Harrie is left with a lonely Lockhart, the man takes the opportunity to grab her away to a group of nuns and tell them about her story and how he, the wonderful and helpful Gilderoy Lockhart, will train Harrie Potter to fight against Dark Wizards and some such nonsense that she tunes off.
By the end of the night, she is denying the man’s words to everyone that comes near and she is pissed as hell about it. She leaves the party when the headless hunt party crashes in and makes the group of ghosts run away.
Passing by the DADA classroom she has an idea spring to life and takes a detour inside the room—with a disillusionment charm on so as not to be noticed by the many Lockhart portraits hanging on the walls—and paints funny faces on them, charms the floor to make squeaking noises every time Lockhart walks on it, ties the desk chair with a charm to make a farting sound every time the man sits and puts another for the chair to become animated and run away from him. Then she ties a hex to the entrance door of his office so he will be heard talking as if he aspired helium after he walks through it, and finally, she charms the portraits to insult him in random intervals with phrases such as ‘You’re a fraud!’ or ‘You should stop harassing the ladies Gilderoy, you know you like men better!’ and even one about ‘Lies! It’s all lies! Don’t believe a word out of his mouth, children!’
The spells are all enchanted in parseltongue and will be dispelled in a week automatically, only someone who knows parsel will be able to disable them and the best part is that, after putting another hex, only students will be able to hear anything!
With a mischievous snicker hidden by her hand, she runs back to the tower and waits anxiously for the show to start in the morning.
All that knowledge from Tom put to good use! Padfoot will be proud of her when they talk next.
Sunday morning, the day after the Halloween feast and Sir Nicolas’ party, Harrie is the first one on the great hall of all of Ravenclaw house. Surprisingly, Luna arrives just after her and with a dreamy look gives her a good morning and sits beside her to ‘wait for the show.’ Odd. Did she saw her somehow…?
Harrie makes a mental shrug and waits for Lockhart to make his appearance in the room.
Hufflepuff house is up and running early, very few snakes and griffins from the seven and six years are around, her older housemates start filling in, and five minutes to eight Lockhart marches inside the great hall.
By then, most of the houses sit at their tables.
The man enters the room dramatically, as usual, and taking a deep breath, he gives them a loud ‘Good morning students!’ with a dramatic pose to match. He stands for a few seconds there, then smiles all around and marches to the head table.
The staring faces of the student body follows the man in astounding disbelieve, many break down laughing hysterically, Harrie included.
Lockhart reaches the middle of the room and starts noticing that the laughs seem to be directed at him and hurries his peace. Sitting uncomfortably beside his grim coworker he asks the man, “What is wrong with the children today?”
Severus, who dislikes the man with a burning passion, sends a disdainful glare as an answer and proceeds to ignore the man with the excuse of eating breakfast. For once the joke is on someone he dislikes, why should he help the man?
“The children seem to be merrier today! I wonder what happened,” comments Flitwick to Sprout besides him.
“They’re happy,” Pomona smiles at the man with an unconcerned shrug.
Minerva glares at his students with suspicion and centers her attention on the ginger menaces more commonly known as the Weasley devils, if someone is to blame on some kind of prank it is usually them, but noticing their surprised looks when one of their friends greets them on the prank she keeps searching. Fred and George Weasley give her lots of headaches, and lots of laughs, but they never take unwarranted praises if they aren’t responsible for another’s prank.
“Can you believe it?” Draco sits in front of her and doubles over the table, laughing, “He sounded so funny!”
“Yes!” Harrie laughs with him and whips some tears from her eyes, “That worked better than I was expecting!”
“That was you!?” Padma squeaks barely, laughing along with the other.
“Not so loud Pads!” Harrie admonishes while shushing her.
“What!?” Vince and Greg looked between them astonished.
“Last night I was at Sir Nicholas’ dead day party and guess who was there?”
“Yep, that man is so thirsty for fame and recognition that he started telling lies to everyone about training me to fight the Dark,” she grunts out with an eye-roll.
Draco snorts, “Teach you? I’m sure you know more than he does unless he was talking about the useless charms he rants about in his books.”
They’ve got a laugh out of that and walked to their respective classrooms after breakfast, the ravens and puffs to DADA, the snakes and griffins to potions.
“Oh! This is going to be so good!” She singsongs softly so only the closer people hear her, while she rubs her hands together.
“There are more pranks waiting for the peacock?” Asked excitedly Amanda, bouncing on her toes, behind her.
“Lots of them,” Harrie grins.
“Wow, he really annoyed you…” Padma smiles gleefully at the prospect of the pranks.
Harrie sits at the last table, Hannah and Susan to the right with the other puffs and Padma with Amanda in front of her at the Ravenclaw side of the room. Roger Malone, the Italian silent kid that’s always falling asleep, arrives a minute after the bell sounds and sits in the last seat with her. He put his head over his crossed arms and proceeds to immediately fall asleep.
“Hello class!” Entered the peacock with his flamboyant robes and over-enthusiastic attitude, he walks down the stairs and Harrie’s grin tries to split her face. The first steps echoes over the room loudly, a strong ‘chuick’ followed by various ‘chuiky, chuiky chuick’.
Roger beside her shots his head up and looks with wide eyes to the professor, just as enraptured as the entire class who follows owlishly the form of the man walking down the stairs and along the room.
They fight against their laugh was short-lived, as when Lockhart sat, a really loud farting sound reverberated in everyone's ears and they lost it. The man jumped from his chair, flaming red, the charm activates and the chair starts to shake like a dog and runs away from the man. The look on his face is so comical, the disbelief clear as the day, this mixed with the squeaky voice and the ‘chuicks’ every time he walks made it impossible for them to stop their hysterical laughter.
And if that weren’t enough, just after that a portrait shouted over the others who were complaining and let the entire class hear how much Gilderoy Lockhart liked men and recommended to stop lying to himself already and accept his fate.
The rumor mill that day mentioned the DADA’s professor name a lot and by the time launch arrived all the school knew how much the professor’s own portraits thought he was a fraud, a liar and a closet gay.
Gilderoy for his part didn’t understand what was happening, he was pranked with a farting charm and a running chair but surely that wasn’t so damn funny! How dare the children laugh at him! He’s Gilderoy Lockhart, Witch Weekly best smile, a hero of the wizarding world, owner of an Order of Merlin Third Class!
Of course, he was never able to hear his own voice as the students did, or the sounds of his footsteps, or the insults his portraits shouted. All that the adults can hear is a normal voice, normal footsteps and cocky phrases from the many Lockhart canvases.
The local nest of acromantulas suffered a hard blow in the following months, between Maud and Áedán a quarter of the giant spiders disappeared while the werewolves learned in a hard way to leave the place alone.
Áedán moped for days until Harrie found the spell to desillusion him in the Gryffindor grimoire and then he was able to fly on the skies of Hogwarts once more. The spell is a specialized one that Godric created for the dragon when Áedán reached the size of a horse two years after hatching and after the muggles tried to shoot him down for the third time with their weapons and the dragon’s wings got damaged. The man dedicated two entire weeks investigating ways to protect his familiar only resting for meals and a few hours of sleep in between and only because his friends were insistent.
Tom dedicated long hours talking to Maud, Áedán and Fawkes about the founders and learned to communicate with the dragon with a rougher version of Parseltongue that made Harrie’s throat hurt until she got used to it some days later, much like Mermish that Maud and Áedán started teaching her slowly after telling her about the merpeople living under the Black Lake.
The portraits of the founders, inside Sal’s office, congregated from time to time. Godric helped in her learning of the elemental family magicks, Rowena helped in her research about Horcruxes along with Sal’s old and dusty journals, Salazar berated Tom the first time he saw him and then ignored the teenager Dark Lord in favor of teaching Harrie her way around the many secret passages hidden all around the castle after she discovered one of the exits of the Chamber that lead her to the seventh floor and near the RoR, Helga meanwhile offered support and company when Harrie wanted to relax.
In another part of the castle, the headmaster’s office to be more precise, Albus Dumbledore sits thinking on new ways to fix his credibility. First, the death of Ronald and Dean ruined his planes because of the bad press that caused and then Harrie hated the young Weasley’s guts so instead of becoming friends she despised him and the kid’s loose mouth didn’t help, he needed her to befriend a good and light oriented family, one who is completely in his pocket preferably, so they lead her into the path of light and under his control. But then, the ministry started making questions because that woman Skeeter wrote so many true stories that were unheard of her and the public was outraged.
In the middle of fighting his urges to just kill the idiot minister and keeping his public credibility safe thanks to evasive answers and well-placed words, he forgot completely about talking to Harrie at the end of the previous year.
Quirinus death and the fail of the compulsions he put on her head to protect the stone didn’t help much either.
He was in a conundrum regarding what to think about her, because her friendship with so many Slytherin kids worried him, but at the same time she was regularly seen leaving the meals in company of two Hufflepuff girls which families are with the light, Neville Longbottom always with them and Hermione Granger who is a muggle-born. For some reason, the little snakes didn’t mind Harrie’s friendship with any of them.
Harrie Potter is nothing like he was expecting, Petunia was supposed to hate the spawn of her sister, the muggle family should have treated her in such a way as to guarantee that Dumbledore would be a saviour to the little abused girl. Instead, the girl that arrived at Hogwarts, a bit more than a year ago, was friendly to everyone, didn’t seem to look up to him as he wanted, studied a lot, didn’t start fights, didn’t play pranks... She is nothing like her parents, except that in his mind he ignores how much like Lily she actually is, and Albus is angry that Petunia didn’t do her job as he expected—that he knew of anyway.
How he missed Gellert. It was a shame the Albus had to betray stop him.
But it is all for the Greater Good. My greater good, he finishes thinking, planning more schemes.
In the middle of November, N°12 was finished and Sirius along with Remus moved into the house.
Narcissa sent Harrie pictures all the time in-between of the many rooms and how they looked as they were finished, which Harrie loved as it was just what she had in mind for the old building to end up looking like. Between the two of them, the witches of the Hocus Pocus agency who were making the redecoration were run thin by all of their request for things here and there, but in the end, all of them were happy as the house was transformed into a gorgeous living space.
Gimmauld’s complete overhaul took a long time, with two curse-breakers from Gringotts out of seven getting harmed by nasty curses that cost one of them a nail from his thumb that won’t grow back, the goblins then had to take all of the furniture from the house to one of the vaults and remake entire floors as the years of disuse and pests infecting the place made the walls and floors unstable or even rot in some places. All that time, Narcissa and Harrie wrote letters to each other to discuss their ideas and plans for what each thought was best to put around the rooms.
In the end, the manor looked like this: the wooden floor was completely changed as Harrie asked for black marble, the walls changed from peeling paint and moss to prussian blue yardage and clean surfaces with details near the floor and ceiling of silver vines, the drapes were all changed as they were moth-eaten and beautiful blue-ish indigo coloured ones took their place around the windows, the ceiling that was falling down was repaired and painted black with silver chandeliers illuminating the rooms, the furniture was mostly unusable so Narcissa left it at the vaults and bought everything of matching mahogany with silver details like the handles, the upholstery was of entirely black leather, many white or cream vases with different light-blue flowers adorned the place in stark contrast with the previous all-around black theme of the house, the canvases frames where all changed to silver—as Harrie likes the ones at Malfoy Manor—and looked after by a recommended artist of Kranulk’s to clean them and fix the ones ruined by the moss, dirt and time.
Sirius room, on the third floor, was completely different from the rest of the house. Blood red drapes hung from the windows, red silk linens covered the bed, cream walls and carpet made for a bright room, dark wooden furniture and a big golden chandelier filled the room. And because Narcissa wouldn’t have it any other way, she bought him and an entirely new wardrobe, going so far as to take him into muggle London after he complained when she burned his old muggle get up that he got when he was in his twenties.
In contrast to Sirius’s, her room is more in tune with the rest of the colour scheme for the house, except maybe for the carolina blue of the walls and the soft black Egyptian threaded linen of her bed with a furry white-grey blanket.
The library was warded so Sirius wouldn’t burn the dark arts books as he wanted, for her ‘protection’. The ritual room as well was warded off. Both had intention based wards that would immediately evict anyone with intentions of harming the books or the rooms itself.
The greenhouse was fixed too, with great difficulty, and the dangerous plants like devil’s snare and the fire whip were put together in a separate room at the end. The plants weren’t overgrown and the room was properly lighted as the plants needed it with the clean window panels and covers separating the ones who didn’t need so much illumination.
The entire building on the outside was scraped off of the old and falling paint job and made anew.
Lachlan, who talked with Harrie about maybe re-opening Potter manor before she went to Hogwarts, contracted them for the renovation of their home too. He and Sirius took her on an outing to the manor one weekend before mid-term exams, so she could give them permission to enter after disabling the lockdown on the Manor’s wards and letting them in on the secret as the property is under the Fidelius Charm; and as they give her a tour around the place when they recovered their memories of the building, they acknowledged that some rooms needed a new touch of painting and some other minor changes as some furniture was starting to become too old even with charms on them. Thankfully, the Fidelius Charm is tied to the base warding stone of the manor, so Harrie gave her uncle permissions to activate and deactivate that feature of the wards so the witches can apparate in the grounds to do their job.
A letter interrupted those plans though, as Lachlan had to travel back to the Macusa for some important and very urgent meeting and with no other Potter around, the Manor went on lockdown once more.
After much whining since the start of the school year, came the end of November, Tom decided to heed Harrie’s complaints and pays a visit to the DADA teacher.
Gilderoy Lockhart disappeared mysteriously the day the students went home for the Christmas holidays.
As Tom wanted to keep searching about Horcruxes, she left his diary to Carmilla, so he could go out in Knockturn and do his things. Meanwhile, Harrie visited India, where Lucile lives. Lachlan wasn’t around yet, so Harrie, Sirius and Remus travelled alone.
Lucile received them with open arms and showed them the sights, warming up to the couple easily as they showed their playful side and made the old woman laugh. Harry, on the other hand, learned where her auntie got parseltongue from after the woman showed her the more in-depth grimoire from her branch of the Potter family and her mother’s line which gave her the ability; revealing that such skill is a coveted ability in India, as it’s harder to come by someone that has it in comparison with two to three hundred years ago when Lucile’s great great grandmother married into the Potters from Greece and there were more parselmouths roaming around the world.
Lachlan surprised them as he appeared in Lucile’s door one morning, but as he was working under the behest of the ICW he couldn’t reveal much information to them about why exactly he was there. He returned from India with them and Harrie wasted no time in sitting to talk with him about America, interested in hearing about Ilvermorny as it was founded by the niece of her ancestor Constantine Gaunt and Lachlan promised to bring her a pamphlet about the school.
At the resumption of classes on January, a training Auror Nymphadora Tonks, started teaching for the remaining school term.
The ex-Hufflepuff was a complete klutz but a good teacher. And also, Harrie’s cousin! The girls had much fun getting to know each other.
When Harrie asked what he did with the man, Tom said, “Maudueenie doesn’t enjoy peacock so Áedán made himself a barbecue,” and that was that.
Tonks made the DADA classes more enjoyable and with no one to cause havoc, the rest of the year went by somewhat peacefully.
It was in the middle of April when something worrisome happened: Lucile stopped visiting her dreams.
The midnight visits for her aunt stopped for the duration of two entire weeks and Harrie worried when Lachlan didn’t answer her numerous letters. But by the fifth of may, Harrie experienced for the first time sleepwalking by herself, she was done waiting.
Lucile explained the basics about it, as it wasn’t so difficult. Basically, to be able to sleepwalk, a person only needs an excelling grasp of the workings of mind magics and Occlumency. As a natural Occlumens, a trait from her Ravenclaw ancestry, Harrie took to it like a duck to water and surprised Lucile.
Sleepwalking alone for the first time was just a little bit confusing, but as Harrie appeared in a dark alley besides Lucile, she went from slightly dizzy to sharply alert.
Lucile looked up at her with surprise, “Harrie! You shouldn’t be here, it’s too dangerous…”
Harrie though ignored her and knelt on the floor, besides Lucile’s bleeding body. She raised her arms and focussed on channelling her magicka into Lucile’s depleted core. It is an ability only ever used between family members and really old, where the Head of the family can channel other members strength or pass it to them.
Many explosions and screams reached them as Lucile looked at her in wonder as Harrie’s magicka healed her body and returned her strength back.
“What is going on?” Harrie asks a moment later, once she grasped how to do the magicka exchange without focussing so much on it.
“A Dark Lord has been rising into power lately. Remember Lachlan’s visit?” Lucile asks and waits for Harrie to nod, “He’s been sent by the Confederation as answer after the Indian’s spokesperson asked for help. Indian’s never were much into shows of power so they have a well fitted and working department of Aurors, but they aren’t even remotely ready to take on a rising Dark Lord.” She grunts and holds her side when the pop of a realigning rib makes her see stars. She swears in many languages for a few minutes until the pain fades and after a deep breath she continues, “Lachlan and I discovered the Dark Lord’s minions and started following them and gathering information, but we weren’t ready for an attack in the middle of the bazaar and-da parte di tutti… bevakooph laash!”
Another bone, this time in her left wrist, pops and realigns in place; followed by her shoulder popping into place two seconds later. Lucile grits her teeth and curses Merlin’s knickers, all while Harrie tries to keep from giggling at her creative way of cursing and keeping her focus.
“The Dark Lord discovered us somehow and started attacking us in the middle of the pub where we were having dinner while waiting for all of his minions to arrive at the meeting in the top rooms.” Lucile hisses as a deep gash knits itself together and breaths another curse, “As you can see, we were overwhelmed. We weren’t expecting them to discover us, much less to attack in a crowded and public place without so much as a by your leave…”
Harrie stands up and stumbles as she feels lightheaded for a moment.
“Harrie!” Lucile shouts, trying to grab her, but her hand passes right thru Harrie’s form.
“It’s fine,” Harrie says, steadier now, and raises her hand to placate her worried aunt, “I just felt lightheaded for a moment there. I’m fine now.” She looks to the bazaar beyond their dark alley and bits her lip, “Is that uncle Lachlan still fighting with them?”
“Yes,” Lucile turns her eyes in the same direction as Harrie, “I better go help. Don’t worry,” Lucile tries to calm Harrie, “The Aurors arrived a moment before I came here.” Lucile frowns down at her and thinks about something before talking, “There is nothing I can say to make you go, is it?”
Harrie shakes her head, “Don’t even think about it.”
Lucile huffs tiredly and smiles at Harrie, “Damn stubborn genes… Okay, this is what we’re gonna do…”
She explains a technique that would allow Harrie to become unaffected by any spell going thru her sleepwalking spirit and repeats many times the warning about her magic levels, as it is highly dangerous to get a magicka burn for someone as young as her.
Magicka burns usually happen when someone uses more magicka than their body is used to, or trying to cast a spell when their core is already depleted and making it overwork; trying to use more magicka than available will cause the person to feel lightheaded, nauseous, tired, with muscles aching, blurry vision, can make them faint, and if they keep pushing it, fiery red marks like lightning appear in their bodies, more commonly being their arms and lower back. There are people who even died because of overexertion of their cores.
And the final warning Lucile gives her, to not let an AK touch her. Not even sleepwalking spirits can be protected from that spell.
Once Lucile is satisfied with Harrie’s grasp of the technique some minutes later, they rush into the bazaar and the middle of the fight. Harrie’s spirit floats behind her and startles a lot of people.
Lucile battles her way to Lachlan, who fights three wizards at the same time from behind a transfigured block of granite as thick as a volleyball. With Lucile there, he stands and the two of then start exchanging spells with the figures dressed in black; some strange mix of the classical coloured robes mostly found in Europe, with cuts from the sherwani long coat and churidars trousers from the commonly Indian style of clothing, often wore in wedding ceremonies; all of the minions are covered with black flat masks.
Lachlan and Lucile are joined by the Aurors as the minions retreat, surrounding a building that is clearly covered by wards as their spells suddenly stop before reaching the mass of minions surrounding it.
A moment later, a man with a golden mask appears from a balcony above their heads and starts speaking. Harrie doesn’t understand a word of it so she puts her focus instead on healing Lachlan.
“Lach, please tell me that you have a plan,” a man with a heavy accent says as he gets closer to them.
“I’m afraid not, Nilam. They took us by surprise,” Lachlan explains.
“It’s obvious that you have a rat in your house though. How did they know about us otherwise?” Lucile comments gaining a glare from some of the Aurors. “But, I may be able to take the wards down,” she looks and Lachlan, “Do you know how to pass magicka like Harrie?”
He shrugs, “I can try.”
A chanting starts from the balcony and Lucile shudders, “Oh no…”
“What is he doing?” Nilam asks with dread.
“I wish I was wrong, but I’ve heard that before and I know what it is… a Voodoo ritual.”
“No!” Nilam panics, “We can’t let him do that here. It will enslave anyone close, in who knows how far of a distance. We’ll be mere puppets for him to play with…”
Lucile slaps him, “Get a grip! We can afford to panic right now. Prepare everyone, I will throw the wards down and we need to distract him. The only drawback to any Voodoo ritual is the high amount of concentration and time they demand to be cast.”
Nilam starts shouting orders to everyone around them and they give her space close to the ward limit. She starts casting detections spells first, Harrie notices. After a while, she nods at the two of them and Lachlan puts a hand on Lucile’s left shoulder while Harrie focuses once more on connecting her magicka to her aunt’s.
With the help of Harrie, Lucile starts tearing on the construct of the wards, and not to late Lachlan’s magicka surges in her and helps. It doesn’t take long, not with the incredible amount of magicka she has access to eight then, and the wards come crashing down with a shrill screech as the minions fall down in pain.
“Well, that is something…” Harrie comments with surprise as she recognises the sound. Tom took one of those wards down before, surprising the hidden villagers in Peru, as it takes the strength of a dozen wizards working together to put them up or tearing them down. He was welcome with wariness and excitement at the same time as he was an enigma to them as much as they were for him; Tom was expecting to find ruins, not a village of magicals isolated from the outside world.
Half of the minions who remained upright weren’t ready for the pain and only a few could fight. That still left them with too many to take down and head to the Dark Lord, as they discovered when the first wave of spells was shoot to the man in the balcony, that there is another ward around him.
“We are going to be late at this rate,” Lachlan grunts, shooting another spell.
“Do you have a better idea?” Lucile shouts back at him.
“Is Voodoo anything like the Imperius curse?”
“Somewhat, why?” Lucile falls to the floor in a roll as too many spell career in her direction at once to stop them.
Lachlan jumps over a boulder and takes cover, avoiding by a hair breath an AK to his right side. “We can’t be put under any type of control, Harrie and I, we’re descendants from the Peverells.” Lachlan throws a volley of arrows that he transfigured from surrounding debris and many enemies fall dead. At the same time, a cutting spell hits his side and he falls to his knees, hiding behind the boulder again and breathing with difficulty. Harrie rushes to his side and helps him with her magicka, “Thanks Harrie,” he rasps and coughs blood, gaining a shushing motion from her and a concerned frown from Lucile, who hides from the spells next to him.
“Plan,” the eldest Potter demands, protecting them with a round shield from the ricocheting spells and clearly sweating in strain.
“Put everyone under a ward before he completes the ritual, Harrie and I can throw it off. Once it’s done he’ll be exhausted I imagine…”
“Like from any other ritual, yes,” Lucile agrees, greeting her teeth.
The shield around them flickers for a moment when six spells in a row hit it, but it stands and Lachlan sighs as his wound finishes mending. Sweat rolls down Lucile’s temples and her breath is ragged.
“We will run up to him and keep him engaged while everyone else takes down his minions. You’ll have to run up as fast as you can then and take over as you have more chances of defeating him than I. I can feel my magicka reaching the first symptoms of strain already.” He raises his shaking hand and grimaces while rubbing his head.
Lucile frowns, passing him a pepper up. “I’ll do it, hold him for me. I don’t like using the Dark Arts, but I’ll make an exception for this asshole as that is the only way I can see of taking him down. Be careful.” She stands up and runs to Nilam, to inform him of the plan.
Lachlan, in a show of amazing magical control, merely points his wand up lazily and casts shields as spells are shot in their direction.
The fight continues while he takes a break and prepares to run after the Dark Lord. They notice the moment the wards come into place as a pearly shine surrounds the people, that huddled together further from the previous battling zone. Harrie counts to five and she feels more than notices, the ritual coming to its peak. The chanting stops and a wave of practically solid magic shots from the balcony in every direction.
Harrie feels a sharp sting inside of her skull and cries softly in pain, clutching her head in her hands. The world around her fades for a moment and everything becomes numb. She doesn’t register any sound or much of anything else until the world comes back to existence an insurmountable amount of time later.
She straightens and shakes her head, the feeling of cotton filling her mouth makes her swallow uncomfortably. While her vision comes back into focus, she catches a glimpse of Lachlan running into the building while avoiding the black-clad minions rolling on the floor and wailing in pain, she hurries after him.
Chapter 9: Extra N° 3, Lucile Potter
Thank you, everyone, for the likes, comments, kudos and bookmarks. They make me very happy!
(See the end of the chapter for more notes.)
December 24th, 1902
“Congratulations Mrs Potter, it’s a girl.”
The newborn baby is washed by one of the healers, wrapped in a blanket and passed along to the tired mother that looks at the tiny new life in her arms with love as the hand of the father descends on the newborn’s head, to pass his finger along one cheek.
“She’s beautiful,” Mrs Potter says softly, caressing the little nose but looking at the child’s hair, “and has your hair, of course.” The couple laughs.
“She’s perfect,” Mr Potter says, but he doesn’t mean only the baby as he looks at the two most important people in his life on his arms.
December 25th, 1904
After celebrating the previous night little Lucile’s second birthday, with family and friends, the Potters wake up late but ready for presents.
Lucile receives the first one, a box with many holes that her cousin left with her parents with warnings of ‘no shaking’. It’s a fluffy lime puffskein.
The couple looked down at their little girl for a long while, enjoying her peals of laughter as the puffskein lazily run its long tongue along her neck and tickled the baby.
December 24th, 1907
“What are you going to do about her schooling?” Asks the grandmother during Lucile’s fifth birthday.
“Beauxbaton, of course, mother,” is the relaxed answer of Mrs Potter.
“Doesn’t he has relations that will attend Hogwarts?” The grandmother questions, nodding in Mr Potter’s direction, who is creating butterflies with his wand, for the baby to chase.
“While Althalos Potter is a nice man, his son Henry Potter IV—the new Lord—is not as supportive of my husband’s choice of marrying into such a ‘dark family’ as ours. Their loss,” Mrs Potter shrugs and sighs along with her mother.
“Dark family…” the grandmother scoffs and regally raises her cup of tea to her lips. “Beauxbaton will do her well,” she says with the satisfaction of knowing her granddaughter’s head won’t be filled with the other Potter’s silly notions of light and dark.
December 23rd, 1910
“Grand-père!” Lucile shouts and runs to tackle her grandfather coming out of the fireplace.
“Mon petit dompteur de serpent!” The grandfather grabs the eight years old on his arms and twirls her a couple of times as they laugh.
“Welcome papa,” Mrs Potter greets him with a kiss on the cheek while Mr Potter helps the grandmother, walking her to the parlour where the other members of the family await.
“That’s not fair!” Another child cries as he sees Lucile in the arms of the grandfather.
“Calm down, Nathan,” the grandfather tells the kid with a jovial smile and sits on the sofa, “There is enough grandpa for all my little ones, come here.” The kid climbs on the sofa and the grandfather hug him too, laughing as the kids stick both of their tongues out.
December 24th, 1912
“We are going on holidays!” Mr Potter announces at the family meeting, after Lucile’s usual birthday party.
“Where are you going?” Grandfather asks, sipping scotch in front of the fireplace and holding a sleepy Lucile in his arms.
“We thought about it and decided to leave the choice to Lucile, as her birthday present,” Mrs Potter tells them.
“That is nice, dear,” Grandmother says with a smile. “What was her choice then?”
Mr and Mrs Potter look at each other with mischief, “She wants to see the pyramids and mummies,” the couple laughs while the grandparents stare at them with surprise.
“And I already booked us a flight on the muggles news service. We’re leaving the day after tomorrow,” Mrs Potter tells them enthusiastically.
“Is that safe?” Grandfather questions with worry.
Mrs Potter huffs and rolls her eyes, “It’s going to be alright, father.”
December 26th, 1912
It was most definitely not alright and as the turbulences on the plane became worse, Mrs Potter hugged her child, praying for at least her little ones survival.
The plane crashes and everything goes from deafening to completely silent.
On the coasts of Alexandria, a multitude gathers as they observe the crash in the distance.
Hours later, a couple on holidays finds the most unexpected sight in between the wreckage's remains. A crying child with many bruises and shivering under her wet clothes, who holds a wand...and talks to a snake.
January 3rd, 1913
A Ministry’s Child Services worker comes out of a room, holding a file on hand and walks to the couple in the waiting room next door. “Her name is Lucile Potter, born on December 24th, 1902. From Greece apparently, as the flight crash where you found her was announced widely around the muggle’s news and our investigators are working on finding more about it and the family.” The woman raises her head to the couple and hopefully asks, “Would you mind looking after the little girl while our investigators search for more information? I’m not going to lie, we can take care of her, but probably not as good as you too could, given that the little girl is scared and will need all the attention and love she can get right now.”
“Of course we will!” The female answers, “I can’t possibly leave her alone after what happened to her, poor dear.”
The Child Services worker woman smiles reassured, “Thank you, I know that it’s going to be hard but that little girl needs a lot of support right now and I saw you caring and worrying for her all these days, I’m sure she’s going to be fine in your hands. Please sign these forms,” the woman passes the couple a stack of papers which they sign without trouble. “We’ll make a be-weekly visit to make sure the girl is fine under your care and, if needed, we’ll change the number of sessions with the mind healer if the actual schedule isn’t enough, but for now she seems to be responding fine to the healer and recovering for the traumatic event.”
The couple leaves the ministry with the girl sleeping on the woman’s arms. They floo from Cairo, back to their home in Alexandria. They were on holidays in the family home there, but they actually live in India. What are they supposed to do about their ending time away from work now?
After giving it much thought, the couple moved back to India a few weeks after, as they couldn’t afford to take too much time away from their business. The Indian Ministry gave them little to no problems about it and the healer was happy to make floo visits to keep tending to the mental wellbeing of the little girl.
Jaskiran and Maitra discovered during this period, that she was expecting their first child, and with all the preparations taking place and getting used to the presence of the little girl as they get to know each other better, they weren’t expecting for the notice they received unexpectedly one day.
May 29th, 1913
The Ministry found the family of the girl, who believed that she died alongside her parents. Her grandparents passed a month ago though, and the Voclains never had as much contact with the Potters, unlike their son who visited the grandparents every holiday as he loved hearing stories from them.
So, when Lucile’s uncles offered them the custody of the child, the couple accepted with smiles on their faces. After so many months of looking after her and growing to love the child, they felt the notice of her blood relatives being found more like a blow to their guts than relief.
The Voclains accepted to keep the holidays' visits so Nathan and Lucile can keep their friendship, but beyond that, they weren’t too concerned about the girl. Lucile, who never spent much time with them, didn’t care much either. So Jaskiran and Maitra were more than happy to keep the girl and relieved too.
December 23rd, 1913
After many hours with the midwives and screams from Jaskiran coming from the room, Maitra and Lucile were allowed inside to meet the new family member.
Maitra holds the baby after sitting in the bed beside his wife, Lucile at his side, both of them entranced by the sight of the newborn.
“Meet your little brother,” Maitra says, letting Lucile hold the baby in her arms with great care, “Montu Singh.”
Communication between them was confusing at first. They bought a Drop for her, so she could understand them when talking and she would learn to write and read as she understood more and more of their language with the help of the Drop who gave her the basics of Hindi. Thankfully, she was an easy child and the couple had nothing to complain about as she was mild-mannered and very obedient. With the help of the healer who was treating her trauma because of the accident and the death of her parents for the first five months, they became close as a family and Lucile learned to love her new parents and accept that she was getting a new addition into the family, not a replacement for her position.
The next day, at Lucile’s birthday, she received three letters addressed to her along with her presents.
Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, invited her to join for the next school year, with a letter from Lord Potter attached that welcomed her anytime to visit the family members there and he also sent her his condolences for the loss of her parents.
Beauxbatons Academy of Magic was delivered almost at the same time, the letter from the headmaster welcomed her to join their academy if she wished to, as her parents asked for a placement for her there many years ago.
In the evening, and unexpectedly, she received a third letter. This time, from Mahoutokoro. The famous and ancient school of magic from Japan.
Her parents though shared a smile and told her not to worry, as she had half a year to decide yet.
In June, Lucile was having a nice dream when it suddenly changed. A stranger walked up to her, introduced himself as a professor and started telling her the tale of the founding of one of the greatest schools of magic in the world. When she woke up, Lucile runs into her parents' room and jumped on their bed until they woke up.
Uagadou accepted her for attendance too.
In 1913, Lucile Potter started her studies at Uagadou.
Lucile was a bright witch, and like many Potters before her, she took to magic like a fish to water. Although, she was the first one to learn completely wandless magic since, maybe, the founding of House Potter.
She made a couple of friends, very close and bright like her and between them, they took over the first places in every subject. Always coming on top in their academics.
Liam was a nice Italian guy, from a family with high levels of magicka who prefers the Ugandan school over others, as they teach magic without making them dependant on wands, staffs, or any other type of focus with which to channel their magic. He was tall, with honey brown hair, soft caramel eyes and a mischievous smile that drove everyone near him.
And he was Lucile’s boyfriend.
Until they fought, anyway.
Why did they fight?
Many reasons actually. All of them a result of Lucile’s decisions. And, unfortunately, all of those decisions drove her to have a massive breakdown…
It all comes back to the accident that killed her parents. The treatment she received with the mind healer afterwards helped her, sure, but all teenagers are bound to have changes and go through a difficult period during that stage of their lives. For Lucile, her teenagehood made her remember her lost parents with a lot of longing and many ‘what if’ questions that made her mind stress. And it wasn’t something that happened from one day to the other, no, she started having doubts about lots of things for years before 1920.
The end of her studies at Uagadou with all the pressure of ending on top as usual, plus exams, family, friends, boyfriend… It became all too much.
Liam was a good friend and a better boyfriend, but when he proposed out of the blue one day, Lucile freak out. She wasn’t ready for such a question. She wasn’t ready to think about that when she wasn’t sure about what she wanted for her life after school yet. Marriage was a distant tough, much like forming her own family or having kids. Liam, bless him, understood her at the beginning; but, later, became insecure himself.
By the end of April, after preparing for exams harder than ever before which stressed her like nothing else, Liam and she had one of their rare arguments. Liam wanted her to at least move with him for a while, to live together in an apartment in Italy that he’ll use as he’ll start his Defence Mastery to later try the Auror training. She felt insecure about taking that step and starting putting up vague and lame excuses instead of explaining her real problems with it. Liam got angry and started questioning their relationship, which was almost two years old, and her feelings for him.
Lucile didn’t know how to explain the guilt she felt for her parents' death, in an accident that could have been avoided, if only she chose any other destination for their holidays. She loves Jaskiran, Maitra and Montu, but it’s not the same and she feels like a burden. After all, not even her uncle and aunt wanted her, her relationship with Nathan was almost non-existent as he stopped wanting to visit during the holidays after he made some friends at school. She felt insecure about the future and what to do with her life. Should she study? Maybe start an apprenticeship? Should she go with him and take a year off as her parents suggested? It was all just so…
They didn’t realize it, but they started a shouting match, saying things they didn’t mean but were hurtful nonetheless. And Lucile’s unstable and stressed magic exploded.
The professors found them unconscious in the destroyed classroom, Liam with a concussion and Lucile with severe magical exhaustion. He got a visit from his parents and kept his distance afterwards, not even sending letters. She got suspended and lost the year.
Visits with a mind healer started again, where he explained that she was suffering from something that muggles call ‘survivor’s guilt’, a mental condition that occurs when a person believes they have done something wrong by surviving a traumatic event when others did not. The arduous battle against her syndrome started then, lasting for years afterwards, with harsh words from her healer about never hiding her feelings behind occlumency shields as that would only hinder her recovery.
After a year of treatment, she retook her studies and passed all of her tests with impressive scores. Signing right after to start her first Mastery training for Dark Arts, and four years later she got her Mastery in the Light Arts too.
During all that time she still assisted to sessions with her mind healer, not as often as in the beginning when she attended every two days, but once every one or two weeks. All the time, she had the support of her family and she made sure to show them how grateful she was for their support.
In the following years, Lucile travelled all over the world, learning more about her chosen masteries and making friends everywhere she went. On a visit to Italy, she met Liam and they became close once more, but just as good friends; and when he married years later, he asked her to be his little girl’s grandmother after she helped during the unexpected delivery of the child. Finding herself as an unexpected nanny, she settled for a long period in Italy and worked for many years with Gringotts, adding curse-breaking to her repertoire of abilities.
Nathan Voclain, her long-time estranged cousin, died without any heirs when a Grindelwald supporter attacked the ministry at France and left everything for her. That was the last time she visited her mother’s homeland for many years.
During the fifties, she met an old wandmaker during a potion ingredients gathering stroll. He took her as his apprentice one day, sometime later, no questions asked and no options given. She felt grateful for the trust put on her and took everything as it came, learning the craft with passion and absorbing the knowledge like a sponge. Five years later she learned everything from him, he said as much with a pleased smile on his face before she left for the day. The next morning he was found dead and his heir reneged the man for never trusting his knowledge to him, unable to continue with the business and having to sell the shop entirely.
The following decade, Lucile continue travelling, discovering old magical knowledge, sometimes accompanied by her Goddaughter during holidays. When visiting her old school, Uagadou, she was offered a teaching position which she accepted, working there for a long period of time.
During the holidays of 1978, Lucile received an owl from Montu. It was unexpected as they sent letters to each other sporadically at the beginning of each month and this one arrived in the middle of it. The news she received shocked her to the core and she left everything, presenting her leave to the Headmaster, to travel back to India for the funeral of her parents.
Montu was heartbroken when she arrived the next day. She paid for a crazily over-priced portkey to do so with such haste.
They prepared everything for their parents' cremation and took care of the rituals and prayers with almost zero talking. The mood was sombre and the meals were the only time she saw him for many weeks afterwards. Finally, a month later, Montu revealed his decision to leave. He would go back to Egypt, where some of his grandparents were originally from, to try and restart his life on a place without so many painful memories.
As an old and self-sufficient woman now, Lucile left all of their parents' possessions for him and Montu sold everything.
For three years after that Lucile wandered aimlessly, finally deciding to go back and settle on the country she always called home as people became wary of her parseltongue ability as the late Dark Lord wreaked havoc in the UK. She settled back in India, buying a little pretty house, living peacefully, and helping people in need when she could…
The owl from Henrietta Potter took Lucile by surprise. She met a Lord Potter many years before, but never had much more contact with them beyond that and learning that the famous Girl-Who-Lived was none other than the last Potter of the main branch of the family, surprised and worried her. Lucile never paid too much attention to the story of Voldemort’s defeat as it was something that didn’t touch her where she was so far in eastern Asia and she never heard about the famous vanquisher of said man beyond the moniker commonly used, after that letter though she regretted never paying more attention.
She agreed to meet the girl, visiting her dreams, and what a surprise she was. Talented with wandless magic at a young age, fearless in her friendship with creatures such as vampires that scare most everyone, intelligent beyond her years, and a...living Horcrux. She may have used a secret advantage of being the one controlling the setup of the mindscape during her first visit into Harrie’s dreams to instigate sincerity, she felt a little guilty about that, but she only wanted to know about the worrying situation with the muggles that the girl talked about in her letters, she never expected to learn that about her little niece. She tested Harrie, to make sure she wasn’t under the Horcrux’s influence, breathing easily when she found no trace of the wayward soul attacking her mind or magic, just a share of knowledge; harmless, considering.
The girl was lovely and Lucile became fond of her with surprising ease, getting fond flashbacks to the time where she babysat her goddaughter. Teaching her was nice too, as the girl had Tom’s knowledge and held more knowledge than anyone her age, understanding magical theory and complicated spells techniques like a breeze. But beyond that, she loved sitting on their mindscapes and just talking to her, noticing that Harrie became more open and their talks helped her unwind. Lucile’s mental breakdown was terrible and terrifying, if she can help Harrie avoid one herself she’ll do everything she can.
During the summer holidays, Harry and her guardians visited. Lord black and his partner, a werewolf. Wonderful youths that made her smile more than she remembered doing in a long time.
And then, Lachlan Potter arrived.
The man, working for the Confederation, was after a Dark Lord’ trail. With little to no luck. So, she helped him. Lucile knows India best, so she accompanied him, getting to know another distant familiar and gaining some of her lost sense of adventure in the way. Tough, getting caught wasn’t in their plans…
At first, she was sceptic. Anyone who knows India and its people knows their beliefs are not the best of soils to see the spring of Dark Lords . Lucile grew and got old in the country, loving it and making it her home, so it was hard to believe a wizard such a those could ever exist there, but in the end, she was proven wrong.
She didn’t want to worry her niece, but truth be told, if not for her appearance Lucile may have bled to death in that dark alleyway. Harrie surprised her once more when she fought alongside them afterwards, not in the literal sense of the word but supporting her and Lachlan with her magic for a long time, in a shocking display of strength and a big large magical core for someone her age.
“Plan,” Lucile demands, protecting the three of them from the ricocheting spells with a fifth-tier shield that is restricted to auror forces all around Europe. Good thing she isn’t there at the moment. Sweating in strain, she curses herself in her mind for letting her resistance degrade so poorly during the last years.
“Put everyone under a ward before he completes the ritual, Harrie and I can throw it off. Once it’s done he’ll be exhausted I imagine…” Lachlan said with a questioning look her way and she nods.
They can throw off mental attacks? How useful. She’ll ask them about it later… “Like from any other ritual, yes,” Lucile agrees, gritting her teeth. Her shield flickers momentarily when six spells in a row hit it, but it stands and Lachlan sighs to her side as his wound finishes mending.
“We will run up to him and keep him engaged while everyone else takes down his minions. You’ll have to run up as fast as you can then and take over as you have more chances of defeating him than I. I can feel my magicka reaching the first symptoms of strain already.” He raises his shaking hand and grimaces while rubbing his head.
Lucile frowns, passing him a pepper up. Yes, she can feel his waning magickal aura already. “I’ll do it, hold him for me. I don’t like using the Dark Arts, but I’ll make an exception for this asshole as that is the only way I can see of taking him down. Be careful.” She stands up and runs to Nilam, to inform him of the plan. He better not be putting Harrie in harm's way or she’ll tear him a new, or maybe a dozen, holes on his body.
Nilam listens to her carefully, nodding and shouting orders to his forces while she prepares an improvised but strong ward around them. They notice the moment the wards come into place as a pearly shine surrounds the people that huddled together as she worked on it. The ritual comes to its peak not a moment too soon and Lucile gasps at the strength of the blow that shocks her ward as the chanting stops and a wave of practically solid magic shots from the balcony in every direction.
Lucile watches as Lachlan runs inside the building to confront the Dark Lord while she dismantles the wards, staggering on her feet when her magicka stops gushing out of her like a river. She needs to take a moment to sit and breath because it’s been literally decades since she used so much magic at once.
After a too-short moment, she straightens her will and rushes to help her family. The Aurors are helpful and she gets into the building with little to no struggles, running up the stairs and following the sound of battle. She hides for a moment near a door, conjuring a little helper, hissing softly and waiting for the right moment to attack. Lachlan is a sight to behold, young as he is, but he fights viciously against the older wizard.
The moment Lachlan falters, she’s right there covering him with a shield and attacking the Dark Lord with a wandless spell that destroys the chandelier and forces the wizard to retreat or be crushed.
As the floor shakes under their feet, she takes a deep breath and prepares her mental shields to protect her as she is about to unleash her entire knowledge on dark arts on the imbecile that almost killed her and wreaked havoc on her favourite bazar. She loved the gulab jamun one of the shops sold there, bastard!
“I’ll borrow this for a moment…” she tells her nephew, grabbing the wand lying on his exhausted and unresponsive arm. He grunts noncommittally and lies bonelessly on the floor while Harrie’s spirit watches over him. She studies the wand for a short while, ebony and elder wood, thunderbird feather, a strong and suitable wand for combat, transfiguration and powerful magic, perfect. Still, she may have to craft him a new one after this…
Only a couple of seconds passed between her attack at the wizard and the dust rushing out of a window, but enough for her to be ready and immediately deflect the poisonous green spell shot at her. She widens her stance and prepares both wands to cast, hers is mahogany and red-oak wood, with nundu’s bones; good for duelling, dark spells and strong magic too.
She always preferred wandless magic, but when facing a powerful foe is better to be equipped with a foci to strengthen her spells and lower her magickal expenditure. Besides, she plans to use lots of dark magic to teach this Dark Lord wanna be a lesson and her wand is always strapped to her arm just for this kind of occasions. It pays to be prepared.
The wizard attacks, a volley of spells in varying colours rush at her. She stops everyone, raising a shield with a slow and fluid motion. The longer the wizard keeps sending spells the more he gets winded, and angry. Lucile smiles lazily at him, flicking her second wand up and transfiguring the surrounding debris into butterflies that swarm at him, then she cast a protective ward around them, commonly used during duels, so he can’t run or harm others and she can focus entirely on him. She notices, with her peripheral vision, that many others come out of hiding to openly watch after she does this.
The wizard, after many spells at the butterflies, seems to use his brain and just burns them, attacking her once more. He makes a weirdly choreographed motion with his staff and yellowish gas starts to fill the air. She protects herself with a bubblehead and keeps transfiguring butterflies to bother him with the ebony-elder wand, sending many other nasty things with her mahogany-red oak wand. Bone breakers, entrail expelling, bone-shattering, blood boiling, skin peeling, dark fire, ice spikes, poisonous arrows, heart-stopper, toothache inducer, explosions, and wasting curses to name a few.
He answers in kind, employing the movements needed for his casting with the staff to avoid some spells and throw his owns. She recognizes the deafening curse, the nails pulling curse, the lightning strike(that she barely covers from), and one bone to ash curse; many others are so uncommon that she only ever read about them during her investigation for the final stages of her mastery and none are nice, not that she was expecting him to be.
After only ten minutes of their ongoing fight, the room is completely decimated and the only thing keeping the ceiling from raining down over their heads is the duelling ward as their spells crushed the pillars into ashes. The fight extends and more people arrive to watch the duel. She doesn’t know how long it is when Harrie’s magic gives her the edge she needs to push the dark wizard and win.
She has a bleeding cut on her left side that doesn’t look like it’s going to stop leaking anytime soon, lots of scrapes and bruises, a sprained ankle and a broken little finger that she straightened with a grimace as it harms her casting. The Dark Lord is much worse for wear though, his robes are signed and he’s badly burnt, his right arm lies limp hindering his use of the staff and as she sends her sphinx Patronus to blind and distract him, her oak wand strikes him with a spell that shatters his knee-cap. He falls to the floor with a howl of pain, giving her little helper the perfect window of time to bite him and slower his reactions, an overpowered curse from her makes his pain last longer and his blood vessels explode. In the end, the poison of the snake and the blood-boiling curse kills him.
Lucile swais where she stands for a moment and cuts all of the magic keeping transfigurations to avoid falling unconscious. She is in the limit of magickal exhaustion but she can’t clear the ward without burying them under debris. With a last spell, she throws the ceiling to the side with a lot of effort and disables the ward, fighting the feeling of nausea and cramped muscles to walk to Lachlan and Harrie.
“When I wake up, I want lots of gulab jamun or I’ll be mighty pissed…” she tells Nilam and sits next to her nephew, finally blacking out against a wall.
She got her gulab jamun after waking up, Nilam was there to pass it along with his thanks. The Aurors were surprised by her combat abilities and thankful as her actions saved them from becoming mindless puppets, all of them waited outside the day she was released to show their respect.
Lachlan and her got released by the healers after 24 hours under their care, mostly to make sure there were no curses causing troubles. They left and when they got inside her house, an owl was waiting. The ICW sent a message with news that shocked them.
Lachlan left a few days later, back to America to give his report as he was working as an ICW representative for them.
It won’t be long until they see each other again though.
This chapter took me an eternity to write! >.<
Sometimes I can write 10k chapters in a matter of days, no problem. But, for this one, I changed things so many times that in the end I just had to wipe out everything and start from the beginning, ugh. Hate when this happens.
And... sorry for the month-long wait, I was uninspired. 😅
Chapter 10: Extra N°4, Sirius Orion Black
Two chapters in a day? What?
Yes! Aren't you lucky?
Although... is more of a tease for a good laugh than anything.
(See the end of the chapter for more notes.)
Sirius walked into Grimmauld place for the first time after the makeover of the place was finished and couldn’t believe his eyes! He walked around, getting the guide from Cissy and looked dumbfounded and speechless.
“I can’t believe it!” Was the first thing to come out of his mouth when they sat for tea at the informal sitting room, “You did this?” He asked with wide eyes at Narcissa who smiled satisfied back at him.
“It was a hard time, getting everything as Harrie wanted, but I like to think I did a good job. Do you like it?” She sips her cup of tea, smirking behind it to hide her amused smile at the look Sirius gives her.
“Like it? I love it!” Sirius says with a wide smile, “I can hardly recognize the hovel this used to be!”
“Wait until you get a peek at your wardrobe…” Remus whispers and Sirius shots him a questioning look.
“What do you mean Moony?”
“Mr Lupin was gracious enough to accompany me shopping for new clothes for you, cousin,” Narcissa sniffs, looking pointedly at Sirius clothes, “You can’t go around wearing uncle Orion’s old clothes. They are old-fashioned, ill-fitted and not at all suited to your age. Also, you’re the Head of the Black family, even if you hate the idea of taking your responsibilities seriously; you must dress accordingly to your station.”
Sirius grunts and gives a betrayed glare at Moony all the way up to his bedroom. He loved the decoration Harrie picked for it but walked warily into his walk-in closet.
“Don’t look so scared Pads, I helped pick some things,” Remus smiles at him and Sirius relaxes a little bit.
“Here goes nothing…” Sirius opens the double doors and his eyes widen. The closet isn’t filled to the brim and has mostly the essentials.
Narcissa walks pass him and picks a few things for him, “Try this, I’ve got you mostly black colored clothes and not as many clothes as I wanted since Mr Lupin said your taste is way different than what I had in mind. She leaves him in the closet, closing the doors, and waits outside with Remus until Sirius changes.
Sirius walks out a few minutes later, sniffs and posses dramatically, giving a deadpan look at his cousin and partner, “I find this most befitting of my person.” He bows and breaks the act laughing at her surprised face. “I can’t believe I’m saying this, but it’s a nice choice, thank you, Cissy, I actually like it!”
Narcissa glares, “Of course it’s nice. Now go and try this next,” she pushes him into the wardrobe with a new set of clothes.
“Are the gloves really needed?” Sirius asks coming out once more.
“Hagrid gave me your motorcycle back,” Remus comments eyeing him.
“Oh!” Sirius exclaims in surprise, “I forgot about it… I like this jacket, but I'm hot so I'm not putting it on right now. How do I look?” He asks moony, standing straight and posing.
Remus gulps down visibly and smiles, “You know you look good, now go get changed before I become tempted to go inside with you!”
Narcissa gives a little giggle and puts a new change of clothes in Sirius’ hands. “At least he didn’t complain…” She starts saying but gets interrupted.
Sirius comes out suddenly, half-dressed and smiles at her, “I don’t know where you bought these boots and shirt but I love them! They're comfy,” he says quickly and he gets lost behind the doors... coming out a moment later, “I don’t think frills are my thing, Cissy…” He rushes into the wardrobe and finishes changing. “I like this coat, hmm soft. Trousers in or out?”
“Out!” Narcissa and Remus agree. “Try this other coat, is made of the same material just different cut,” Narcissa tells him and he changes right there.
“I like this,” Sirius says, watching his reflection in the mirror. “I don’t think the shirt with long… folds? is my thing though.”
Cissa shrugs, “It was worth a shot, it’s admittedly an old style… now all these, go change.”
Sirius gets his hands full with more clothes and gets lost behind doors again. Coming out and giving his cousin a suspicious look. “Did you bought this from the muggles?”
“Do you like them?” Narcissa questions without remorse, “I may not like muggles but they have some good things…” she sniffs ignoring Sirius’ laugh.
“Padfoot, try these ones, I choose them,” Remus says giving him another pile of clothing.
Sirius changes quickly and comes out glaring accusingly at Moony, “You took my cousin to shop in muggle London!” He laughs and points to his clothes, "This certainly is muggle, the cuts are entirely different!”
“Guilty,” Remus smiles.
“One last… jean was it?” Narcissa mumbles the word for a moment, “And a jacket.” She gives Sirius more clothes, “I needed his help or I would have got lost…”
Sirius comes out of the wardrobe with just those two pieces of clothing on and Narcissa rolls her eyes at his lack of decorum, “I’m so confused… I have muggle clothing I like and my pureblood cousin bought them… so confusing…” Sirius says walking away from the room, “I need a drink, you’re putting my world view upside down right now Cissy, shame on you.”
Remus snorts and Narcissa scoffs, “I have good taste and Remus knows your preferences, it was a needed evil. It’s not like I’m going to start buying all my clothes there… Even if I saw some good things I may buy for myself sometime.”
Sirius stops going down the stairs and looks back at her with shock. “Weird…” he blinks, pointing an accusing finger at her, “Who are you and what have you done with my cousin Narcissa, who thinks all things muggle are a terrible influence for me?”
Narcissa shoves past him with an eye-roll, “I grew up Siri, I’m not fifteen anymore.”
Make sure to click on the links to see the pictures of 'Sirius' trying his clothes, that's where the fun is!
Here is the page where I got the pictures from, if anyone is interested: fantasmagoria.eu
They have... interesting stuff. Not my style, but maybe one of you like them. *shrugs*
I just like the Cerberus plushie! So cute...😍