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Death's Design...Fate's Plan

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Chapter Ten
***Go Your Own Way***

Before the Lady Hermione Granger-Potter and her parents were arguing the reality of soulmates, before Professor Minerva McGonagall and Madam Amelia Bones were discussing the depth of darkness to which Albus Dumbledore and Tom Riddle had sunk, and well before Sirius and Harry began their tour of new homes; William Arthur Weasley, known to most simply as Bill, arrived at St. Mungo’s Hospital for Magical Maladies. He was accompanied by Sirius Black, a man he had left England believing to be a vile betrayer only to find upon his return that the wealthy Lord was nothing of the sort and was, in fact, a distant, though nearer than some, cousin. They were joined by Sirius’ long-time friend, Remus Lupin.

After receiving Arthur’s request that Bill be allowed to come home for a family emergency, several higher level Goblins had come together and discussed the information that had come to light, not only in their own hallowed halls, but also in the DMLE and Ministry, in recent days. Rather than giving the eldest Weasley child a leave of absence, Bill’s direct supervisor’s superior, SwordDraw, chose to transfer him to the warding department in the London branch, since the Goblin Nation’s intelligence gave them the impression that he would probably be needed in the country of his birth for longer than a paid leave would allow. The Goblins all agreed that they preferred not possibly loose such a valuable asset as the Weasley heir by forcing him to go on unpaid leave. The Goblins may have considered the redheaded human to be a Qa’Hom, but they all acknowledged that he was better at working his way around booby traps and other tomb dangers than a niffler was at ferreting out treasure.

Bill was in what could best be described as a major quandary, or better yet, a full on intellectual and emotional crisis. When ShellHack, his supervisor, had pulled him from the dig he was on in Thebes and informed him that he was needed home due to a family emergency; the tall, redheaded cursebreaker was shocked. As he gathered his things, he found himself unable fathom what reason they could have for him being called home. They hadn’t even called him home when Ginny had been possessed. If the twins hadn’t pulled him aside during their unexpected visit and told him all they knew of what had happened the school year before, he’d never have known to look her over. Had he not done that he would never have known that she needed a soul purification. He’d mentioned the need for the ancient Goblin ritual to his mother, only for her to dismiss the magics of the proud race as unnecessary and worthless, because ‘Dumbledore assured us that she is just fine’.

That had been the moment that Bill realized that not only were his parents as fallible as everyone else, so to was the man the Wizarding World held up as the second coming of Merlin. Either Dumbledore wasn’t as great as everyone professed him to be, or whatever spirit had possessed his little sister had been smarter than the old man and hidden his ‘trap’ in ritual magics knowing that most wizards and witches considered rituals to be ‘lesser’ magic. The Soul Purification had done its job, which was a relief, because who ever had almost taken his little sister had left behind an horrifically insidious remnant.

Bill forced his attention back to the matter at hand. He had packed quickly and efficiently. Per SwordDraw’s command, Bill had packed down his whole apartment sized tent and he carried it on his back as he rushed into St. Mungo’s. He was quickly shown to his father’s room as Sirius spoke to one of the hospital administrators and Remus stopped to check on Narcissa Malfoy, no Narcissa Black…Sirius was adamant that she would soon have her maiden name returned to her. As he sat by his father’s bedside, Bill was shocked and appalled to hear the reason he’d been called home. To find out that his mother had been raping his father for longer than he, himself, had been alive, that he and all his brothers and little sister were products of that rape…to find that the leader of the light, the beacon of right and good in their world was nothing more than an extortionist and a mental rapist; forcing others to do his dirty work so that he could maintain his façade …it was all almost too much for his already worried and taxed mind to bear.

Arthur reached out and carefully took his oldest son’s hand. “I know that this is a lot to put upon you right now, my son, but I need you to take over temporarily as the head of the Weasley family. I need you to get Charles here…take him to Muriel and have him take over the headship of the Prewitt. Muriel has been ready to pass the torch for some time. I fought her because he so enjoyed the place he made for himself in the world, but I need him home now. It will be necessary to keep the taint of what has occurred from making the lives of Percy, the twins, Ron and Ginny hell in Hogwarts. Percy wants to work in the Ministry…after this scandal hits, he’ll never get the chance if we don’t have the Prewitt name backing him. I will also need you to get Ginny in here so that the Healers can see her. I should have done this right after the debacle her first year, but I allowed your mother and Dumbledore to convince me that it was unnecessary, but there is something…wrong with Ginny.”

“Dad, I did a goblin soul purification ritual on Ginny when you all visited me.” Bill said perplexed. “Her soul is clean of the stain of whoever it was that possessed her that year. I made sure and ShellHack checked her again for me before we left Thebes when we toured the tomb.”

“But it was just yesterday that she was speaking as if she had no moral compass…no understanding of what was wrong with the words she spoke.” Arthur gasped.

“Tell me exactly what she said.” Bill leaned toward his father. Arthur relayed, quickly and concisely, all that George, Fred, Percy and Ron had told him as well as what he heard from his daughter himself. Bill could only sigh. “Unfortunately, that is just who Ginny is, Dad. She is spoiled and pampered as much as Mother was able. Though to be honest, Charlie and I are to blame as well. She was our little princess and since we’ve left home, we always send Ginny the best gifts and trinkets. Ginny truly believes that Harry Potter is hers because she wants him and she has never not received what she wanted. There were times she had to wait for her desire, but Mother would take from the rest of the boys, or ask of Charlie and I to ensure that Ginny had all that she wanted. Think on it Dad, Ginny is the only one of us other than Percy to get a wand of her own, and Percy only got his own wand because none of the family wands would work for him. Whenever Mother can, Ginny’s clothes are the newest available in the second hand store. The charms used to repair them stronger than she ever used on anything else. The books and toys bought for her always brand new. Yes, some of that was because we were all boys before Ginny, but most of it was Mother bending over backwards to spoil her. Mother loved the distinction of being the woman to finally give the Weasley family its first girl in Merlin only knows how many generations. Is it any wonder that until he became friends with Harry Potter, Ron was sure that Mother only had another son, him, because she was trying so desperately for a daughter.”

“I can only now, looking back, see the things you mention. And even now my mind rushes to try to find a defense for Molly.” Arthur whispered.

Bill tried to keep his voice in careful control. As much as he hated seeing all his father was going through, he was happy to finally have a reason why the father he remembered from his youth had become more and more henpecked and less and less of a parent as the years went by. “It is the nature of the potions Mother had you on.” He paused as he considered all that he knew…things learned over the years he’d been away from England. “Were we in any other country, Mother would be facing death for over twenty years of potions rape. Dumbledore would face at least life in prison for his part in all this.” He knew that he would need to get Charlie back to England and in control of the Prewitt line. He hoped that he would be able to convince his brother to not only help him shield their younger siblings from the fall out of their mother’s choices, but to pull the veil of the Prewitt name from her before the pureblood name could save her in any way.

***God Gave Me You***

Harry and Hermione led her parents through Diagon Alley to Gringotts. Hermione’s cousin/uncle/professor was talking earnestly with Julia Granger nee Jillian Lupin while Sirius brought up the rear. They were very quickly shown into a room to speak further with Tearing Claw, and Serpent Tooth who, the Potter, Black, Lupin party found, were joined by Hook Claw.

“Good afternoon, Lord Black. I am happy that your house search proved fruitful.” Hook Claw greeted them. “Lord Potter…I have not seen you since you vomited in my face.” He growled almost but not quite baring his teeth.

“That one was not his fault.” Remus spoke up in defense of a very embarrassed Harry. “Sirius had just let him have a sundae at Fortenescues, despite Lily telling him that Harry was way too little for that much sugar.”

“I am very sorry nonetheless.” Harry rushed to add. “I would like very much to promise that it will not happen again.”

Hookclaw smiled…or as close as a goblin ever came to doing so. “Don’t be so quick to promise that. We have much to discuss, and some of it is rather unpleasant.” The goblin gestured to the seats waiting on the bank’s most interesting clients. “However as is the human tendency, I will begin with some good news. The DMLE has approached Gringotts asking that we look into any criminal activities undertaken by either Molly Prewitt or by Albus Dumbledore. As this information is now a part of an active Ministry Criminal investigation, we may discuss all monies, properties and real estate with the rightful owners, despite any of the usual caveats as to age or status.”

Everyone could easily agree that it was good news indeed to know that they could make head way into finding out the true state of Harry’s affairs. “What’s the bad news?” Harry asked warily.

“The scope of Mr. Dumbledore’s theft is beyond even our original ‘worst case scenario’ estimates.” Hookclaw said honestly. “We assumed that your father had set up your trust account as Charlus had done his own, to refill to the maximum allowed amount once a year. Even if he had done as his Grandfather, Alasdair, had done and had it refill quarterly, things would not have been as disheartening. However, your father chose a very radical, and rarely ever done set up for your trust vault. It was and technically still is set to refill whenever it falls below the halfway mark. Dumbledore used his place as your ‘interim’ magical guardian to help himself to at least half your trust vault’s contents on a monthly basis.” He paused and allowed the humans to understand the magnitude of the theft. “We’ve utilized forensic accounting measures to trace all of it. We have recovered about ninety nine point seven percent of among the different accounts that Albus Dumbledore had in his name or was the sole signatory on. However, we have also found that a little over two hundred thousand British pounds had made their way into an account that we had already drawn to the attention of the Lloyds Banking Group for audit. We were able to reclaim a good portion of the funds that had been moved into the Muggle world. They were being held in an account under the semi-alias V. Karl Dursley. However, Mr. Dursely also used the funds to purchase a condominium here in London. It will be no problem to reclaim the property and add it to the Potter/Mallory portfolio; it is a very fine piece of real estate. But there is a ‘tenant’ for lack of a better word. One Ms. Brandi Cothsweld and her seven month old son Karl, Jr.”

“That son of a bitch.” Harry snarled. “He stole money meant for me…or at least from me or something and used it to cheat on my aunt. He has some nerve.”

Hookclaw cleared his throat, “Unfortunately, Lord Potter, that is not the most egregious part of the news I must convey to you today. Mr. Dumbledore is being charged with poisoning Petunia Dursley. St. Mungos has provided evidence that he used alchemy to cause her to feel at best antipathy towards you and increasing her fear and hatred of magic. Your cousin Dudley, I believe, has been found to be magical. He was given an alchemetical poison that suppressed his magic to the point that his name disappeared from the magical roles. The DMLE has had both of them admitted to St. Mungos and they are being treated as we speak. Once the treatments are completed, Dudley Dursley will be admitted to Hogwarts for training and Petunia may have the child abuse and neglect charges dropped if the mind healers feel that she would not have behaved in that manner had she not been poisoned.”

Harry simply blinked a couple of times. “I was not expecting that. I don’t know what I was expecting, but that certainly wasn’t it.”

Padfoot, Jillian Lupin-Granger, and Remus all seemed to agree with him on that point. Hermione however wasn’t as surprised. “I don’t believe that there is anything I wouldn’t have expected from either of those two men.” She grumbled. She would never allow Harry to know it, but she truly hated his uncle. If she felt she could get away with it, she would happily, physically destroy him. But a large part of Hermione felt that even a torturous physical death probably wouldn’t last long enough to satisfy her need for justice. ‘Mr. Hookclaw…is there some way that we could not only seize the property and the contents of Mr. Dursley’s banking accounts, could we seek punitive damages against Mr. Dursley, Mr. Dumbledore and anyone else involved in the thefts?”

The two goblins in the room exchanged looks. Neither of them could ever remember seeing such a blood thirsty, vicious look on a human’s face before. “While punitive damages are not the norm in the wizarding world, we can certainly use them to great effect in the case against Mr. Dursley.”

The smile that crossed Hermione’s face was even more disturbing than the look she’d given them moments before; though her grandmother found it very reminiscent of an old American TV character played by Joan Collins. “Mr. Dumbledore is just that…a mister. Harry is Lord Potter, with a whole host of titles and nobilities backing that up. During the Victorian era and before there were any numbers of laws on the books that make punishments more severe on a commoner for crimes against the nobility. Now since the Wizarding world seems to be stuck sometime around that time period, I’m sure that if we do a little looking we can bring some similar bigotry and bias to bear to show the Headmaster, Supreme Mugwump, Chief Warlock the true era of his ways.”

“Lady Potter, should you decide that you would like to hold a career position...please consider applying here at Gringotts. I believe that you would do well here.” Hookclaw said with what seemed like amusement. “I will have someone researching the laws pertaining to a base wizard committing a crime against a lord of a Most Ancient and Most Noble house.” He sent a note off to begin the search immediately. “I do have some good news; these charges have created a need for a full audit of every account associated with Albus Dumbledore. Your family was not alone in his attempt. Several other families may find their fortunes reversed soon. He has also been defrauding the wizarding world since the moment he began to administer the accounts for Hogwarts school of Witchcraft and Wizardry.”

Every human face in the room was displaying various versions of the truly dumbstruck facial expression. Tearing Claw and his brother exchanged looks before the House of Potter account manager continued. “Now the full scope of that fraud is still being uncovered, however, the Ministry is currently allowing Gringotts to control the forensic accounting aspect of that investigation so we shall soon have it fully handled.”

Having discussed all they were to discuss on the topic of Albus Dumbledore, Tearing and Hook Claw were both ready to move onto what they considered the more pressing business of the day’s meeting. Hook Claw tapped something on the desk with his long sharp finger, and five other Goblins entered the room and took seats at the table. One Harry and Hermione were able to identify as Serpent Tooth, but the others were soon introduced. “Having processed the Line Tests that you completed yesterday, we have assembled the other account managers for the lines that have been taken from their ‘dormant’ to ‘active’ status. Where would you like to start?”

Sirius finally came back to himself enough to ascertain that this meeting was not going to be as simple as he’d originally thought. “Why don’t we start with the Duchess?” he smiled. “Ladies first and all that.”

“Very Well, Lady Granger-Potter, allow me to make known to you, the Accounts Manager for the Most Ancient and Most Noble House of Slytherin, Tnarub Bane. He has managed those accounts for the last seventy five years.”

Hermione greeted Tnarub Bane very carefully. She spoke calmly, smiled demurely making sure not to give even a hint of her pearly whites. “It is very nice to make your acquaintance. I am sure that your management of the Slytherin accounts has been stellar.”

Tnarub Bane smirked. “Beyond. Your Kinsman, the upstart who had renamed himself Voldemort, found my management of the three vaults and several properties to be impossible to circumvent.”

Her answering smirk told the hardened old Goblin all he needed to know of her intelligence. She understood that Riddle had not been able to access much if any part of the fiscal inheritance. “That is wonderful. I would hate to think of the damage he would have done had he been more than a titular heir.”

Tnarub Bane gave her a look that would have chilled the soul of a less stalwart young woman. “I believe that when Mr. Riddle discovers that the primogeniture has returned the title and all it holds to the proper line of secession, he will be quite perturbed.”

“While I cannot claim that I am looking forward to the tantrum he will probably throw, we are trying to prepare ourselves for it.” she returned honestly. “I believe that you will find several items in the Slytherin Vaults that will be of service to you. Unfortunately while a female may fully inherit, the Vaults open only to blood or parsel speech.”

“Then it is fortunate that my husband can provide the need hisses and spits. Though I will open it the first time myself.” She stated thoughtfully.

The next Goblin to be introduced was a slightly taller Goblin with a slight tinge of green to the gold undertones of his skin. “Lady Granger-Potter, I am Bagh Naka.”

Juillette had been silent for all of the meeting so far, but she gasped, “Isn’t that an ancient Indian claw weapon, the inspiration for Freddy Kruger’s glove?”

The goblin who had introduced himself as Bagh Naka nodded giving the mother of his client an almost proud look. “Few members of your race would know that. Your daughter’s love of reading obscure texts is already legendary amongst her peers; it would seem that she learned that at her mother’s knee.” He placed his attention back on Hermione. “I am the Accounts Manager for the Most Ancient and Noble House of Lupin. There is not much in the way of property for this line, just a manor house in Yorkshire. However the investments and business holdings for the line are rather extensive. Jillian Lupin-Granger, your father’s life stone diminished before that of your brother, so Orestes will over rode the last will and testament of Augustulus. There was a small bequeathal of twenty five thousand galleons left to you. I will, of course, have a vault key ready for you or I can prepare the paperwork to shift the account to Barclays by the end of the day as per your wishes.”

“Would it be possible for you to convert half the amount to pounds and deposit that into Barclays and leave half in a vault here in Gringotts?” Jillian/Julia Granger asked after a moment’s thought.

“As you are a squib, the Ministry’s current bylaws will allow us to do so.” Bagh Naka told her making note of something on his paperwork.

“Then, please do so, and I would like to purchase some stock in two Diagon Alley businesses, Gladrags and Twill & Tatters.” Julia smiled mischievously.

Bagh Naka raised an eyebrow. “It will be as you ask; however, the House of Lupin already owns roughly forty-eight percent of each of those businesses.”

Julia’s smile turned rather dark. “I know. In fact, I am well set in the muggle world. Use as much as you need so that between the two of us Hermione and I own controlling interest in both, as well as any other business in the Alley where we are near enough…”

Each goblin in the room could only grin. Sirius too understood his best friend’s aunt’s thought process. “Let’s take control of any that the Black family is within three to five percent from holding the majority interest in within the next thirty days.” Harry looked askance at his godfather. So Sirius explained quietly, there are many ways to begin change. One of the best is to fully control a country’s financial system. The more businesses we control, the more we can force to have more open hiring practices and less discriminatory practices across the board.”

“Ah, then we shall do the same with the same parameters.” Harry said with a smile. “For all my lines.”

“It will be as you suggest.” Tearing Claw said with a grin. “If you will give us all a list of the changes you would like your new ‘partners’ to comply with, we can ensure that you remain hidden in the shadows affecting those changes until the time is right.”


He yielded the floor back to Bagh Naka. “Lady Granger-Potter,” he passed her a portfolio in a shade of deep teal that had always appealed to her. “Now, the Lupin family has a matriarchic centered inheritance structure. You are female, fulfill the menarche requirements set forth by your ancestors and you are magically mature enough to assume the mantle of the Head of the Family. While you cannot yet see the full portfolios of your other lines, they have ages for full primogeniture that do not allow you to see the full depth and breadth of your inheritance until seventeen for the Slytherin line and eighteen for the Malloren line.”

Hermione listened with half an ear as the goblin spoke. She was thumbing through the opening pages for the Most Ancient and Noble House of Lupin. “Bagh Naka, is it common for the elder houses to prepay for children to attend Hogwarts?”

“Yes, often as soon as the child is confirmed to be magical which a Healer or Mediwitch can tell by the end of the first trimester.” He answered. “It is a way to ensure the child’s place in the class ahead of the selection process for any empty slots which are then offered to muggle borns.”

“Remus, I’m sorry to bring this up, but did you have any brothers or sisters?” she asked calmly.

“No.” Remus told her honestly. “I was originally a twin, but my brother was still born. Why?”

“Several days before the attack on your family Augustulus paid for two seven year educations at Hogwarts. Your tuition was paid as was your twin brother’s in nineteen sixty…Romulus’ tuition was refunded to the House of Lupin seven months later. The two full, seven year tuitions paid in nineteen sixty six were never refunded. It would seem Bagh Naka, that the full weight of the Most Ancient and Noble House of Lupin must be added to those with grievances against the minor and common house of Dumbledore.” Hermione said with a chilling smirk.

Harry looked over at her, falling even harder for his cutthroat best friend. “How do you know how to say all of this?” he blurted.

“I read a large amount of literature and nonfictional accounts set in Regency, Victorian and Edwardian England….the time periods that Wizarding Britain seems to be stuck in…I simply extrapolated the verbiage from with would have been utilized then.”

‘That is so amazingly sexy.’ Harry thought to himself. He only had a moment to wonder, ‘Is it strange that Hermione speaking so intelligently gets me all twitterpated?’ before Sirius leaned over to Remus. “I remember seeing that look on James face every single charms class first through sixth year. The total gobsmacked by her intellect look.” He stage whispered so everyone in the room could hear him clearly.

“Anyway,” Hermione stressed moving the duo of pseudo uncles from teasing her soulmate and back to the issue at hand. “As I was saying…I am sure that those tuitions made it into Dumbledore’s pockets rather than back into the family coffers.”

Harry looked thoughtful and voiced a question that drew everyone’s attention back to him. “Bagh Naka said that parents know as soon as three months if a baby is magical or not, so how did Remus’s grandfather not know that Mrs. Granger was not magical until it was time for her to go to Hogwarts…and what happened to her tuition, it wouldn’t have been Dumbledore at that time? Right?”

“I see that once again the much exalted Hogwarts education has failed to live up to its hype.” Tearing Claw drawled dryly. If several people in the room thought that he’d just reminded them of a certain potion’s professor, they didn’t feel the need to share. “A squib has a magical core as do those who are descendants of squibs. While they do not possess the necessary threshold to perform wanded magicks, they do have a certain level of magic…that is true for the parents of true first generation witches or wizards as well, rare though they in fact are. Most squibs and their descendants practice the ritual magicks that I believe muggles currently call ‘wicca’. However, there are currently on record at least seventy five magick users around the world that should be wand users but were missed by their various ministries. So while Jillian Lupin would have registered on the tests of the time as having a magical core, she didn’t have the level of power to attain her a place among wand users. The current test doesn’t simply look for the presence of a core, it registers the thaumaturgy level they will begin life with. From there it is rather easy to predict if they will ever attain the levels needed to practice wand magick.”

“As for the tuition for Jillian Lupin, it was returned to the family. In several of the elder families, the tuition is held in trust in the muggle world to provide the child with a nest egg to draw upon when they reach their majority. Augustulus Lupin was never one to spend money upon a female…he was rather bitter over the fact that he would never have the same level of power as his peers. When he ‘ejected’ Jillian Granger into the muggle world, he cut off all contact with her; physical, emotional and financial.”

“He was a bastard.” Julia Granger said with the calm resignation of one who had long since become comfortable with a truth that was indisputable. “He was a jealous hearted bastard who always felt that the fact that our line was matriarchal was a sin against Merlin and Crown and country. Your father was nothing at all like him and that was exactly why I married him. It was fine that Augustulus didn’t want me to have the family money, but the fact that he kept my brother from me causing Remus to be all on his own after the rest of the family was killed…that he is roasting in the fires of hell for.”

Remus reached out and took his aunt’s hand. A low rumble of a growl slipping from him as he thought about how different his youth would have been if he’d been allowed to grow up with a family, people who didn’t fear him and could have accepted him the way James, Sirius, Lily and yes even Peter, had. “We’ve found each other now. Try as he might have, the fates meant for us to come to know each other. Augustulus must be spinning in his grave…the matriarch of the Most Ancient and Noble House of Lupin is stronger magically than anyone in the family that has ever come before.”

With that declaration they were finally able to turn their attention back to the matter at hand. Despite everything that Harry knew was coming, much that he learned that day still shocked him. Not only was Dudley Dursley magical, so to was Karl Junior. While Harry was fine with turning over to Dudley the monies that Lily Evans-Potter had set aside for Petunia, he was unsure what, if anything, he should do for Vernon’s illegitimate child. However, he tabled that thought for later as the goblins and Sirius were attempting to teach them about their lines and their responsibilities.


***This Ain’t Nothin’***

Charlie Weasley had always been a pragmatist. He didn’t even take divination simply because he assumed that if there were something to the class it would only apply to those with the gift. Since he’d never even had a déjà vu type of feeling, let alone having ever received a prophecy, he knew the class wasn’t for him. However, after having a series of dreams that left him gasping and crying upon waking for seven days in a row. He felt deep within himself that he needed to contact his family. When he was unable to reach anyone at the Burrow for several days in a row, his supervisor arranged a Gringotts international portkey for him. Fortunately all of the people he worked with understood his need to find out if the dreams that had been plaguing him about the destruction of his family were true and were very much helpful in getting him packed and on his way in the short amount of time he had between the arrival of the portkey and its estimated time of departure.

He arrived at Gringott’s Diagon Alley offices portkey station and was quickly ushered into the offices of Sword Draw, the Goblin over the department for which his brother Bill worked. “DragonKeeper Weasley, your arrival is a most auspicious event. It is well that you have arrived when you have. Your father, and family, have need of you. I do not believe that you would be best served entering the situation without prior knowledge of several events of the last several days.” With that SwordDraw laid out the charges that were being investigated against Albus Dumbledore as well as the location of the adult members of the Weasley family. “Your younger siblings are and will remain at Hogwarts until the end of the term. From there I believe that the decision will be up to your father, your elder brother and yourself.”

Charlie, while not disbelieving of what the goblin had said, couldn’t believe what he was hearing. Dumbledore was a thief and a liar. He’d manipulated their entire world. But worst of all, as far as Charlie was concerned, he had knowingly taken part in the rape of Arthur Weasley for over twenty five years. The fact that all seven of the Weasley children were magical was astonishing since it was well known that when witches conceive while under the influence of love potions it was very hit or miss as to whether the child would have magic or not. He shook his head and tried to focus. Sword Draw led him back to the lobby where they encountered Bill rushing towards the international floo station.

“Bill.” He called out to his older brother. The two men embraced in the middle of the lobby uncaring that many others would be annoyed or even disgusted by their display. The two brothers needed the comfort the presence of the other provided.

The oldest Weasley sibling looked at his younger brother. “There is a lot we need to get done and very little time to do it in. If you can wait on the explanations, we need to get to Aunt Muriel’s and you need to take on the mantle of the head of the Ancient and Noble House of Prewitt. She holds the family regency…it is time that you take up the mantle.”

With a nod, Charlie strode forward with his brother shoulder to shoulder. He knew that it would mean the end of his career, but if he wanted his family to avoid being completely decimated when the misdeeds of his mother came to light. If he was being completely honest the loss of his position at the dragon preserve came in second to having to talk to his mother’s Aunt Muriel on his personal ‘things to be avoided at all costs’ meter. Yet in the end the conversation went far better than he’d thought it would. Aunt Muriel had long since wanted to be shot of the responsibilities and annoyances of running even a somewhat minor house. She had only kept the regency after he had reached his majority because Arthur had forced her to give him time to find his own way in the world. Since the regent was passing along the headship of the family to the heir, it was a simple matter of Muriel passing him the family ring. As soon as Charlie put the ring on the middle finger of his right hand, he felt an overwhelming surge of power and a sense of belonging that he’d never realized was missing.

As he listened to Muriel Prewitt Rothsby explain to him the positions she had taken in managing the family’s affairs, Charlie could only think that the Wizarding World was in for a rude awakening. The Weasleys stood strong and proud on the side of right and at the side of Harry Potter. Now so too would the House of Prewitt.