The Christmas holidays were coming to end. Harry, Ron and Hermione hadn't figured out who the Heir of Slytherin was and due to a mistake by Hermione with the Polyjuice Potion, she was now in the Hospital Wing for the next week or two.
Harry and Ron were in the Gryffindor Common Room playing a game of Wizard's Chess (and Harry was losing terribly to Ron) when the portrait hole opened and in stepped Professor McGonagall. She gazed about the room looking for someone before setting her eyes on Harry.
"Mr. Potter, your presence is required at Gringotts Bank." Said McGonagall.
"You are named in the Will of a recently deceased Wizard. Given who it is, I am not sure why but all named parties or representatives of the named parties are required to attend in order to execute the Will. Come with me."
Harry followed McGonagall to her office.
"As I am your Head of House here at Hogwarts, I am what is known as in loco parentis. Which means that anytime you are attending this school and are not in the custody of your maternal aunt, I am essentially your guardian. I will therefore be accompanying you to the Will Reading." She paused, "You are not the only student attending as Mr. Malfoy has been named as well. Professor Snape is delivering Mr. Malfoy to his mother as we speak. As your legal guardian is a muggle, I will be taking the place of your aunt."
Harry internally groaned at the thought of having to attend this with Malfoy (but didn't voice his displeasure out loud as he doubted Professor McGonagall would be pleased).
"We will be traveling via Floo, have you used the Floo before?"
"Yes, ma'am. Only once and it didn't go well. I was supposed to go to Diagon Alley and ended up in Knockturn Alley."
"Then you will Floo with me. I'd prefer you not get lost, again."
McGonagall grabbed a handful of Floo Powder from a vase on the mantle of her fireplace. She tossed it into the fire which flashed green and stepped in.
"Come, Mr. Potter. Put your arm around my waist."
Harry blushed but did as he was told.
They came out of a fireplace in the lobby of the bank. There were several people gathered there, including Snape and a blonde lady who looked like Malfoy's mother.
"Potter." Malfoy sneered at Snape's side, "What are you doing here?"
"Mister Potter was named in this will as well as you, Mister Malfoy." Said McGonagall.
"I shall be going now that I've delivered you to your mother, Mister Malfoy." Snape said, quickly excusing himself from the room.
"All members of the party for the reading of Lord Black's Last Will and Testament, follow me." Said a goblin standing at the other end of the bank.
Harry and McGonagall joined five other people as they followed the goblin into a room off the lobby. They sat down at a table.
"Ladies and gentlemen, I am Goldaxe and I am overseeing this ceremony today. We are gathered here today to hear and witness the last will and testament of Lord Arcturus Black." Said the goblin.
He unrolled a parchment and laid it flat on the table. A shadow of a man with long black hair and steely grey eyes hovered over the parchment.
He spoke with an aristocratic and gravely voice, "I, Arcturus Sirius Black III, Lord and Head of the Noble and Most Ancient House of Black, being of sound mind and body, hereby proclaim my last will and testament.
To many of you, some of these acts will surprise you. Since the imprisonments and deaths of over half our family, I have had much time to think. I have recently been diagnosed with a rare magical wasting disease and thus have expedited myself to Gringotts posthaste in order to proclaim this will as sound of mind for I know not what will come in the next years. I regret much but I do not regret these actions and bequeathments.
To my grandniece Lady Bellatrix Druella Lestrange née Black: I hereby disown you for acts of terrorism and for daring to attack a fellow Noble and Most Ancient House. I should have done it immediately after you were sentenced to Azkaban for life. There are no excuses for my reluctance. No member of the House of Black shall give aid or quarter to her, her marital family or any persons associated with the Dark Lord she pledged her life to. As the Lord of the Noble and Most Ancient House of Black, so I proclaim, so mote be it."
There was a flash of silver light from the parchment.
"In regards to that, I hereby bequeath a trust fund of 50,000 galleons to Neville Francis Longbottom, Heir to the Noble and Most Ancient House of Longbottom. I know this will not bring back your parents or ease their pain but it will ensure you can obtain a Mastery or two of any subject you wish. There has also been a fund set up to pay for the continued care of Lord and Lady Longbottom at Saint Mungo's. The House of Black formally apologizes to the House of Longbottom for attacking it's Lord and Head of House."
The hologram paused and Goldaxe asked, "Lady Regent Longbottom, as the representative of Neville Francis Longbottom and as the Regent Head of House Longbottom, do you accept this bequest?"
An elderly woman with a vulture on her hat startled and nodded her head quickly, bringing a handkerchief to her eyes.
"To my grandniece Andromeda Lyra Tonks née Black: I hereby reinstate you and your daughter, Nymphadora Astrid Tonks, as members of the House of Black. I know your grandfather and father, my brother and nephew, disowned you but as I am Head of House, I can overturn their decision. So I proclaim, so mote be it."
There was another flash of silver from the parchment.
"In regards to that, I bequeath a trust fund of 50,000 galleons to Nymphadora Astrid Tonks. It is standard that all children of the House of Black receive one, so while this is late, it is deservedly yours. To Andromeda Lyra Black Tonks, I hereby bequeath to you the chateau on the banks of the Seine River in Paris, I remember you wanted it as a graduation gift as a child but you were disowned before you would have received it."
"Mrs. Andromeda Tonks, Miss Nymphadora Tonks, do you accept these bequests?"
An older woman with curly brown hair and a girl who looked like she was just out of Hogwarts with neon yellow hair nodded their heads.
"To my grandniece Lady Narcissa Astra Malfoy née Black: I bequeath the knowledge of your marriage. The House of Malfoy, as a lower house, is subject to primacy of the House of Black under the old laws. I hereby offer sanctuary and the protections of the House of Black to any Malfoy who wishes to leave the service of the Dark Lord known as Voldemort. This is your only second chance, Narcissa. I doubt my successor will be so kind, so think wisely.
In regards to that, I offer a trust fund of 50,000 galleons to Draco Lucius Malfoy as a member of the House of Black with the condition that he never enter the service of the Dark Lord known as Voldemort."
"Lady Malfoy, Heir Malfoy, do you accept these bequests?"
Malfoy looked at his mother, who nodded her head at the goblin.
"To my grandson, Sirius Orion Black III: I hereby overturn the disownment by your mother, Walburga Irma Black. So I proclaim, so mote be it."
Another flash of silver light from the parchment.
"As the last male line Black, I bequeath the Lordship of the Noble and Most Ancient House of Black and all that entails.
In regards to that, as Sirius is currently in prison, I bequeath the Lordship to his Heir known to the public as Harry James Potter. Sirius told me at an impromptu meeting not long after your birth that you had the sufficient bloodline to inherit. I am only sorry I couldn't do more for you."
"Lord Potter, do you accept this bequest?"
Harry looked at Professor McGonagall, who nodded her head at Harry sharply.
"Wait a minute. Lord Potter doesn't have Black blood as far as I know." Said Lady Malfoy.
"He obviously has enough for the Lordship to pass to him. A simple blood test will prove his parentage, Lady Malfoy." Interrupted McGonagall.
"I insist. As the eldest male descendant of Lord Phineas Nigellus Black, Draco is Heir to the Black title. The Potters have married Blacks before but it is not his particular bloodline."
"Very well. With Lord Potter's approval, we shall conduct a simple Heritage Test. For a fee, of course."
"I don't understand, I'm a Lord with a title?"
"You really know nothing Potter, do you?" Draco drawled with a smirk, "Even if he is a Black, which he's not, he's not pureblood and he doesn't even know the traditions or that the Wizarding World has titles. He's not worthy of the Black title."
"Draco!" Scolded Lady Malfoy.
"That's enough. Regardless if he is the Black Heir or not, he is Lord Potter. You've just insulted the Lord of a Noble and Most Ancient House. Apologize this instant."
"But Mother! His mother was a mudblood, he's unworthy of-"
"Draco Lucius Malfoy. You will hold your tongue before you dig a deeper hole than you've already dug. Lord Potter may not be pureblood but he is the Lord of House Potter and may I remind you that he outranks the entire Malfoy Family? Apologize before he takes offense."
Malfoy looked shell shocked. Harry wondered if his mother had ever scolded him in public. Harry doubted it, Draco had been raised like Dudley and Aunt Petunia never reprimanded him in public (and hardly ever in private, either).
Draco's face flushed scarlet red, "I apologize for insulting you, Lord Potter." He bit out the words.
"Your father and I will be having words with you, young man. If this is how you behave at Hogwarts then you need remedial lessons in manners and behaviors befitting an Heir to a Noble House."
"I'm not sure I can accept Heir Malfoy's apology. I doubt he is sincere as Draco has insulted my friends and family many times as well as myself, Lady Malfoy." Harry said, thinking quickly.
Draco flushed purple and opened his mouth.
"Silencio." Narcissa said, pointing her wand at Draco's mouth. "You will stay silenced until you learn to hold your tongue, my child. Lord Potter, please accept my apology on behalf of my son. It seems that he has not paid attention in my lessons. I will rectify that as soon as possible. In the meantime, if he insults you again feel free to write me and I will set him straight."
Harry nodded. He was amazed that he could have put an end to the insults and drama that resulted in being around Malfoy so easily. If only Aunt Petunia could admit the faults of her son.
"Mister Malfoy, as we are not at Hogwarts, I have no grounds to punish you. Rest assured that if I ever hear that derogatory word for a Muggleborn uttered from your mouth again while you are at school, you will spend the rest of the year in detention with Mister Filch." McGonagall said sharply.
"Can we get back to business, Lady Malfoy, Lord Potter? Time is money." Said Goldaxe.
"Yes, for I'm sure this is a misunderstanding. No offense, Lord Potter, but I have a Mastery in History and I know the Potter's genealogy. He may have a claim to the title if I had not had children but Draco is closer to the main line than Lord Potter."
"We shall see." Said Goldaxe.
He brought out a piece of silver parchment.
"This is a fourth generation Heritage Parchment, Lord Potter, Heir Malfoy. It will trace your lineage back four generations. We do not need to go any further back. We will test the bloodlines of both Heir Malfoy and Lord Potter to see who has the right to inherit the Lordship. You will both need to prick your fingers with this knife and allow the blood to flow onto the parchment."
Malfoy silently took a knife from Goldaxe and cut his finger quickly, letting the drops of blood for lines on the parchment. He mother quickly healed his cut with her wand.
The lines flowed, showing Malfoy's ancestors on the page.
Draco Lucius Malfoy
Father: Lucius Abraxas Malfoy
Mother: Narcissa Astra Malfoy née Black
Paternal Grandfather: Abraxas Caius Malfoy
Paternal Grandmother: Alexandrina Briana Malfoy née Nott
Paternal Great-Grandfathers: Caius Gaius Malfoy, Cantankerus Ephraim Nott
Paternal Great-Grandmothers: Cassia Aurelia Malfoy née Flint, Martha Pricilla Nott née Fawley
Maternal Grandfather: Cygnus Pollux Black III
Maternal Grandmother: Druella Anastasia Black née Rosier
Maternal Great-Grandfathers: Pollux Castor Black, Andrew Evan Rosier
Maternal Great-Grandmothers: Irma Louise Black née Crabbe, Narcissa Anastasia Rosier née Ollivander
Magically Sworn Godfather: Severus Tobias Snape
Magically Sworn Godmother: Chloe Daphne Greengrass née Abbott
Harry took another knife apprehensively and looked at McGonagall. She nodded her head at him. If Harry was the Heir to the Blacks, did that mean he wasn't a Potter? He took a deep breath and sliced his pointer finger on his left hand and allowed the blood to flow onto the parchment. McGonagall ran her wand over the cut and healed it quickly. Harry looked at the parchment.
Hercules James Sirius Potter-Black
Father: James Fleamont Potter-Black, Sirius Orion Potter-Black III
Mother: Lily Elizabeth Potter-Black née Evans
Paternal Grandfather: Fleamont Henry Potter, Orion Arcturus Black III
Paternal Grandmother: Euphemia Laurel Potter née Ainsley, Walburga Irma Black née Black
Paternal Great-Grandfathers: Henry James Potter, Julian Matthew Ainsley, Arcturus Sirius Black III, Pollux Castor Black
Paternal Great-Grandmothers: Elizabeth Eleanor Potter née Fleamont, Victoria Margaret Ainsley née Bones, Melania Melody Black née MacMillian, Irma Louise Black née Crabbe
Maternal Grandfather: Harrison George Evans
Maternal Grandmother: Violet Rose Evans née Michaels
Maternal Great-Grandfathers: George Edward Evans, Albert David Michaels
Maternal Great-Grandmothers: Elizabeth Katherine Evans née Dawson, Rose Lily Michaels née North
Magically Sworn Godfather: Francis Harfang Longbottom
Magically Sworn Godmother: Alice Melinda Longbottom née McKinnon
Harry stared at the parchment in shock and confusion. How could he have two fathers? If he had two fathers, why hadn't his other father taken him in when his pare - James and Lily - died?
The room was silent. Harry broke it, "How can I have two fathers?"
"Mister Pott - Mister Potter-Bla - Harry," sighed McGonagall. "In the Wizarding World polyamory is legal and not uncommon."
"No, polygamy involves one person having more than one spouse. Polyamory is a relationship between more than two people. It isn't as common these days, the last polyamorous marriage was in the 1930s, but five hundred years ago it was very popular. King Arthur himself was known to have been in a polyamorous marriage. I'm afraid I didn't know about Sirius, James and Lily though looking back the signs were there."
"You didn't know?" Asked Lady Malfoy, "I seem to recall rumors of an extravagant wedding between James and Lily."
"James and Lily didn't have a public wedding. They were married by James' father on the Potter Estate. It was private, just the Longbottoms, the Potters, the Marauders, and the Evans'. Obviously the reason it was private was because it was a polyamorous marriage, which hadn't been seen in many years, but the question is why did they keep it secret?"
"Lovers married with Family Magic would share a bond. A powerful bond that would allow them to share their magic. They were already targets of the Dark Lord, perhaps they kept it secret to keep a larger target off their backs?" Said Lady Malfoy.
"But how can I have two fathers? I mean-" Harry blushed, "I know how babies are made. How can I have more than two parents?"
"There is a potion. Which is all I will say on the matter. Such matters are not to spoken about in public. If you wish to know more I suggest you ask Madame Pomfrey." Said McGonagall.
"Why - why didn't my other father take me when my - when James and Mum died? Why is he in prison?"
Professor McGonagall closed her eyes and sighed heavily, "I'm afraid that I wished you would never hear of this. Your parents - that is, James and Lily, - were hiding from You-Know-Who under a spell known as the Fidelius Charm. The charm is designed to hide a secret or location. Once it is cast, everyone who knew of the secret would have it wiped from their memories. It is an impenetrable charm so long as the one person who knows, the Secret Keeper, doesn't tell anyone. The more people who know, the weaker the charm is. Sirius was publicly asked to become the Secret Keeper for James and Lily. Sirius gave the Secret to You-Know-Who, which how He located your parents and killed them."
McGonagall conjured a handkerchief and wiped her eyes.
"Though, knowing now that they were not only in a relationship but married and used the Multi-Parent Conception Potion to have a child, I am doubting the truth of this. Sirius was loyal to a fault. It was often a joke at Hogwarts that Sirius belonged in Hufflepuff more than Gryffindor."
"Do you really think he could be innocent, Professor?" Asked Harry cautiously. It would be just his luck to find out that he had a relative alive only for them to turn out to be a murderer.
"I know my cousin, Lord Potter. I honestly never believed for a second that Sirius would betray Lord and Lady Potter, especially as he is Lord-Consort Potter. I offer my support as a solicitor." Said the woman with curly brown hair.
"I agree with Andi. Sirius would never betray the people he loved. We'll have to contact the DMLE." Said Lady Malfoy.
"Dora just started at the Auror Academy."
"I can talk to my mentor I guess." Said Dora.
"No, we should go straight to the top. Madame Amelia Bones is head of the DMLE. We should contact her. She is honest and fair, she will take an unbiased approach to his case." Said Narcissa.
"You actually want to help, Cissy?" Andromeda said, her brow furrowed.
"Sirius is the rightful Lord and bonded by marriage to the House of Potter. If they were married by Family Magic, and as Lord Fleamont Potter married them I would guess they were, then he is innocent. For if he had betrayed his husband and wife, the Family Magic would have retaliated and killed him."
"I agree with your assessment but why are you helping?"
"Lord Arcturus has given my son and I a way out of the madman's hands. I will take it and so shall Draco."
Draco looked at Narcissa in confusion.
"Do not look at me like that, my son. You know nothing of the War. Your father told you that the Dark Lord was ridding the Wizarding World of the muggleborns who scoffed at our traditions and returning power to the purebloods. In truth, the Dark Lord killed as many purebloods as he did muggleborns, he cared nothing for our ways or traditions, only power. It was vicious, cruel and terrifying on both ends of the fight."
She took a deep, fortifying breath as the occupants of the room listened with bated breath.
"You are unaware of this, but I was pregnant before you were conceived. Your father took me to a meeting of the Death Eaters. I believed he hoped it would spare him the pain that was sure to come with the news that the youngest Bones brother and sister had lived. It did, but at the expense of your sister. The Dark Lord thought the punishment of watching me suffer under the Cruciatus Curse instead of Lucius was more entertaining and more painful to my husband. I learned that night that the Dark Lord cared nothing for our traditions or families. He cares only for pain. He was a madman and I will not go through it again and I won't allow you to, either."
"Cissy. You should have come to me. I'm your older sister, I would have protected you."
"You had your Muggleborn husband and a young daughter to worry about. Besides, could you have protected us from our father? Cygnus was a marked Death Eater, and as the eldest male line descendant not disowned was Arcturus' Heir at the time. As the Heir, he had access to the Family Magic. I have no idea what he would have done to me but I doubt it would have been pleasant. I survived. I did what I had to and I survived but Great-Uncle Arcturus has given my son and I another option. I intend to take it."
"Oh, Cissy." Sighed Andromeda.
"Let's not dwell on the past, sister. Father is dead and you are reinstated. We have much catching up to do." Narcissa reached over and squeezed Andromeda's hand.
"It's nice to meet you officially, Auntie Narcissa." Said Tonks, bouncing in her seat.
"It's not our first official meeting, my dear niece. We met once when you were a few months old. One of the only times Andi and I dared to meet."
"Well, as lovely as this family reunion is, we have an innocent man locked in Azkaban. We should attempt to get him released as soon as possible." Said Lady Longbottom.
"I agree with Augusta," Professor McGonagall pulled out her wand and said, "Expecto Patronum To Madame Amelia Bones." a radiant white cat appeared, "Director Bones, your presence is needed immediately at Gringotts, an innocent person may have been locked up in Azkaban."
"Hopefully Madame Bones will show up quickly. Sirius has been in Azkaban for a long time. The quicker we can get him into recovery, the better." Said Andromeda.