January 26th, 2005, 5:28 pm
I am writing a fic about Harry's sixth year. It will start when he is still at the Dursleys. A new character or two may show up in here and this fic will have who I think the half-blood prince may be. I hope you enjoy this fic.
Disclaimer: I do not own anything, except any characters I make up. Everything belongs to the wonderful J.K. Rowling, one of the ten women I admire the most.
Harry was lying in his room, feeling terrible over what had happened to Sirius. Almost every time he slept, he would have dreams of his godfather falling through the Veil. Harry knew that it technically wasn'y his fault, but he still felt that it was. Nothing could make him feel better, not even letters from Ron and Hermione. Even the one Ginny sent hadn't done anything excpet cheer him up for a few minutes until he read the postscript. It had read, "I miss Sirius too, but you should try to get over it, okay?"
At least the Dursleys weren't botherin him, thought Harry. After Moody and other members of the Order had talked with them, they had left Harry alone. Obviously they had been scared by Moody's magical eye and had gotten the impression that it could see things from far awy. So the Dursleys mostly ignored Harry, except to call him to meals, tell him whenever they were going out, and reminding him to write every three days.
Harry wasn't in the mood to write, but every three days wrote a note to Hermione and Ron, telling them that he was fine, but missed Sirius. Now June had ended and it was the first week of July, Harry's almost third week at the Dursleys.
Suddenly a strange owl flew in the window and dropped a letter and package. Harry didn't recognize the handwriting on the envelope and turned it over. The return address said Luna Lovegood, from some hotel in Sweden. Harry wondered why Luna was sending him a letter and package, until he remembered the talk he had with her at the end of term. Luna had actually made him feel slightly better over Sirius.
So he opened the letter and read: "Dear Harry, How are you doing at your aunt and uncle's? I hope they are nicer to you this summer. Ginny said they weren't very nice to you before and that Ronald and the twins had to resuce you the summer before your second year. Well, Daddy and I are in Sweden looking for Crumple-horned Snorkacks. He planned this trip for quite some time, so when Professor Dumbledore asked him to stay in England, he said no.
You see, Professor Dumbledore was very impressed by the article Daddy printed in The Quibbler and asked him if he would join him in the war against You-know-who. Daddy said yes, but that he and I would still go on out trip to Sweden, but only for three or four weeks instead of the six weeks as planned. By the way, Professor Dumbledore has a lovely phoenix and it will be nice seeing him in two weeks.
Sweden is quite lovely and I wish Mum were here with us. She was always very interested in Daddy's magazine and willing to go on trips to look for creatures like Snorkacks. But I know I will see her again someday. After all, I heard voices behind the Veil. Oh, Daddy and I did spot a Crumple-horned Snorkack. It was a creature that looked like a cross between a reindeer and a lion. It had the golden fur and tail like a lion, but the legs were a reindeer's and the twisted horn was a little like a reindeer's antlers.
Daddy and I got a picture of it and I drew one of it for you, as well as made two models. The package is one of the models of the crumple-horned snorkack, made just for you. I hope you like it.
Harry, I know you miss your godfather, which is what you shoud feel. I missed Mum so much after she died. But I eventually got over it, though I still wish she were around. But Daddy says that she's in heaven and still watches over me as an angel. I like that thought. I don't know if your godfather would be a good angel, but he would surely watch over you, like your parents are doing. From what Daddy told me about your mother, she would be a prefect angel, like Mum is. Enjoy your summer the best you can and I will seen you soon, I hope. Your friend, Luna."
When Harry finished the letter, he put it down and thought over what Luna had written. What she said had made him feel better over Sirius. He couln't imagine Sirius as an angel, but the thought that he was in Heaven and watching over him was comforting. And from what he had heard about his mother and saw in Snape's Penseive, he could see Lily as an angel watching over him.
Harry then opened the package Lna had sent and found a folded picture of a crumple-horned snorkack, as well as the model and a photo of it. Luna was a good artist and had the picture of it looked almost exactly like the photo, only it wasn't moving. The model was also well done. Harry then recalled that Luna said that her housemates took her things and called her 'Loony', probably because of what she believed. Now that Luna and her father had found one, some of the teasing might stop. And the photo would prove to skeptics like Hermione that snorkacks did exist.
Harry then set the model on his dresser and pinned up the photo and drawing. He rescaned the letter and realised that the Lovegoods must have joined the Order of the Phoenix. That would explain why he might see Luna soon and the hints in the letter. Harry realised that he felt much better after getting the letter from Luna and began writing a reply to her.
January 26th, 2005, 11:14 pm
Chapter One continued
A few days later, Harry got a letter from Ron. It read, " Harry, How are you doing, mate? I hope you'll fine. It won't be much longer at the Dursleys. Dumbledore says you can visit soon. And it won't be at London. The place closed up after Snuffles died and it won't open again, unless you tell it to. Snuffles left it to you and Lupin, so that's why. My family is staying at this nice big house near ours. It belongs to some rich woman.
Anyway, on July 20th, you'll come to visit. Luna should be back from her trip then. Oh, and Neville and his grandmother are here to. The Longbottoms are on our side, you know, especially after what Neville's parents went through. Anyway, Lupin and this other person will pick you up. I don't know much about her, other than that her first name is Rhiannon, she was part of the old crowd, is friends with Lupin and Snape, and was in their year. I did try asking her to tell me and Ginny more, but she said to wait until you and Hermione got here so she didn't have to tell the same story twice.
Oh, that reminds me, Hermione will also be coming on the 20th. Tonks and Moody are picking her up. So be packed by the 20th. Lupin and Rhiannon will be there at 3 o'clock in the afternnon. They'll Apparate and then take you here by Portkey. So I'll see you on July 20th. It won't be too long now. Your friend, Ron.
P.S. Hermione is crazy with worry over the O.W.L.s. She can't wait for them to arrive and see how she did. She goes on about how important it is for our future careers. I'm not so worried, but I still want to do well since I'm thinking about becoming an auror. Even though it would mean two more years with Snape. Ron."
Harry chuckled over the postscript. It was just like Hermione to be so worried about the exams. Though he was a bit worried himself, since he wanted to be an auror and he had to get an Outstanding in Potions for Snape to accept him into his N..E.W.T. class. Harry was alos a bit excited to be leaving Privet Drive and relieved that he didn't have to go to Grimmauld Place again, though he would have to stop by eventually and get the house opened up, since Sirius had left it to him and Lupin.
He also wondered who Rhiannon was. Ron had said that she had been part of the orginial Order. And since she was in Lupin and Snape's year, that meant she had attended school with the Mauraders and his mother. He wondered if Rhiannon had known Lily, really knew her and not that she just exisited. Maybe Rhiannon had been friends with his mother. If that was true, he knew that she couldn't be his godmother, since Sirius had once told him that he didn't have any. Lily had briefly considered making her best friend Harry's godmother, but in the end decided against it.
Harry put his letter away and began counting off the days until he was to leave Privet Drive.
January 27th, 2005, 8:56 pm
Chapter Two (Spinner's End in real book 6)
The next day, Harry informed his aunt and uncle that he was leaving on the 20th. Uncle Vernon merely grunted and Aunt Petunia said, "We didn't have to put up with you for so long this summer. That's better." Harry ignored the comment and went to his room to see about packing some of his things.
At two fifty on July 20th, two people popped in his room. One was Remus Lupin and the other had to be Rhiannon. Rhiannon was a tall, slender woman with long dark brown hair plaited into a wide braid and wound around her head. She had expressive and intelligent grey-green eyes and a pretty face that was vaguely familar. After some thought, Harry realised that it was because she looked a little like him.
"Hello, Harry," said Lupin. "And please call me Remus. I'm no longer your professor. This is Rhiannon. She was a friend of your mother's. She'll tell you more."
Harry replied, "Hi, Pro-I mean Remus, and Rhiannon. My stuff is all packed."
Rhiannon smiled and said in a very gentle and sweet voice, "I am so pleased to finally see you, Harry. The last time I saw you was when you were just a little baby."
Harry felt instinctively that Rhiannon was nice and could be trusted, the opposite of what he felt of Snape. He then picked up Hedwig in her cage. Remus said, "Rhiannon and I will grab hold of your trunk. You just hold on to Hedwig's cage. Put your free hand on the portkey and at exactly three o'clok we'll be heading for Spinner's End."
Harry was curious as to what Spinner's End was, but Rhiannon said, "Questions later, Harry. Just take hold of this rope. That's the portkey." He did as directed and two minutes later, he felt the tug at his nvel. A few second later, he arrived with Rhiannon and Remus at quiet little street with only four houses. Rhainnon pulled out a scrap and parchment and said, "Memorise this."
Harry read it. It said, "The headquarters for the Order of the Phoenix may be found at number five, Spinner's End." Then Remus took the parchment and burned it while Rhiannon told Harry to think of what he had read. Seconds later, a large house, or rather a mansion, appeared. It was white, with balconies and fancy railings. On the door was a gold plate with the inscription, "Rosebud Mansion, Potters' Residence."
Harry gaped and asked, "Is this where my father's family lived?"
Remus said, "Questions later, Harry. First get inside and settled. Ron is waiting." Harry nodded and went inside the house. Mrs. Weasley was there and gave Harry a big hug and tol him that he wasn't so thin and that the talk with the Dursleys must have helped. Then Hermione, along with Tonks and Moody, cam in. Mrs. Weasley also greeted her.
Then Rhiannon said, "Okay, upstairs, both of you. I'll show you to your rooms and explain things. After that, I'll have my house-elf show you around the house. Her name is Daisy and I insist that she be treated with kindness and respect. If she's not available, I can have Winky or Dobby do it. I hired Winky as Dumbledore said she was heartbroken without a master or mistress and Dobby is being lent to help keep this mansion tidy. They are doing quite well and Winky has improved."
Harry was pleased to hear that Winky was better and Hermione could find no fault with Rhiannon having a house elf. The two were led to the third floor and down a hall. Rhiannon said, "Hermione, you will be sharing a room with Ginny and Luna. The room is quite big, about as big as your dorm room at Hogwarts. Harry, you'll share a room with Ron and Neville. The room is quite big, too. When you've set down your things and have seen your pets settles, go to the room at the end of the hall. We'll talk there."
Harry entered his bedroom and saw that it had three four-poster beds, a large table, three chests of drawers, one mahogany wardrobe, and a bookcase. There were some Quidditch posters on the walls and the room looked very comfortable. Harry ste down his trunk and saw that Hedwig was settled. then he went to the room at the end of the hall. Hermione entered just after he did. Ron, Luna, Ginny, Neville, and Rhiannon were in there. Harry had joyous greetings form his friends and he thanked Luna again for her letters and the model.
Rhiannon then had everyone sit down and she began, "You don't know much about me. Well, my name Rhiannon Marigold Potter. Yes, Harry, I am related to you. James was my first cousin, making you my first cousin once removed."
Once Harry recovered from his shock, Rhiannon continued, "I am quite likely the only relative you have left on your father's side of the family. Well, you could probably count Ron, Ginny, Luna, and Neville like your seventh cousin or something, since pureblood families are related, but that's not really important. I work for the Order the same way Servus does. That is, I'm a spy on Voldemort. When I graduated from Hogwarts, I spoke to Dumbledore about it and he finally let me pretend to be a Death Etaer. I am skilled at Legimency and Occulmency, so I am not found out. When I joined, I spoke with Servus and was able to turn him back to the good side.
"You see, I knew Servus very well at school and like Lily, tried to be nice to him. Unlike my cousin, I never tried to bully him. It did have some effect, but it was countered by people like lucius Malfoy being nice to him. He joined the ranks of the Death Eaters only because of the kindness people like Lucius showed ot him. I was able to bring him back and convinced him to join Dumbledore and be a spy on Voldemort. Anyway, that's my story. Harry, I am not your godmother, as Lily decided against having one. Besides, with the war going on, they only had a small ceremony where you were christened and Sirius named as your godfather. Well, if you have any further questions about me or Lily and James, see me or Remus. You could ask Servus, but I doubt he'll answer them. He's only bearable and nice to me, Dumbledore, and McGonagall."
Rhiannon left the room and Harry and Hermione started getting briefed by their friends.
January 31st, 2005, 6:02 pm
Chapter Two continued
Ron told Harry that Percy was really on their side. "When Fudge asked Percy to work under him, he went to see Dumbledore. Dumbledore told him that it was good, since he would have access to information for the Order. Then Percy was told to act like he was on Fudge's side so Fudge wouldn't get suspicious. So he got into the argument with Dad. With Fudge saying that Riddle's back, Percy apoligised for his behavior and revealed that he was actually on Dumbledore's side."
Harry was very surprised by this and said, "Percy? A spy on the Ministry? How-wait a minute! At my hearing, the time and place had been changed and Dumbledore still showed up for it. He said that he had missed the owl with the news, but luckily he showed up early. So maybe Percy contacted him and told him about the change."
Hermione said, "It all makes sense. But what about that letter he sent to you?"
Ron replied, "That letter? It was in code of some sort. Percy told me that the part about prying eyes meant that the mail could be searched. And that Umbridge telling him I was prefect meant to be careful about Umbridge and that she was reporting to the Ministry. If I had shown you the letter, Hermione, you probably could have figured it out. Percy didn't really want me breaking ties with Harry, he just was warning me to be carfeul and not make it look like I was 'as crazy' as Harry."
Ginny remarked, "I think that was the reason why Percy didn't send it with the morning mail. He knew that you would probably show the letter to Harry and Hermione in the common room. Hermione, with her brains, would have read between the lines. Instead, you just got mad and only Harry was able to read it before you ripped it up."
Hermione then asked, "What about Percy returning his sweater?"
Ginny replied, "Percy didn't want to return it. However, Dumbledore told him that he had to keep up the pretense, so did so. When Dad was in St. Mungo's, he did visit. He apparated there at night and sat next to Dad's bed for two hours. Anyway, we've all forgiven him, though the twins have played some pranks on him for not letting Mum know that it was all pretend. Percy actually didn't mind the pranks at all. He said he missed them and even their pranks and was pleased that they were successful, even if it was by running a joke shop."
Harry then got up. "Well, the next time I see Percy, I'll tell him that forgive him also. I am relieved that he wasn't the black sheep of the Weasley family. Luna, I want to talk with you. Your letter made me feel better and I want to discuss some things privately. Ron and Hermione, I know you're my best friends, but you didn't exactly help. But I still appreciate you guys. Oh, and I want to ask Rhiannon some questions, too."
Ron and Hermione exchanged looks, then smiled. "It's all right, Harry," said Ron. "Uh, Hermione and I would like to spend some private time together, too."
Hermione turned scarlet and whispered, "We realised that we like each other more than just friends."
Neville raised his eyebrows and Harry said, "Took you guys long enough. The way you act sometimes, it reminds me of your parents, Ron."
Ron and Hermione turned even redder and Harry and Luna left the room. They went into the bedroom Harry was sharing with Ron and Neville and locked the door. "Luna, I really appreciated the letter you snet. It brightened my day and made me feel even better about Sirius. That talk we had the end of the year made me realise that you weren't so bad after all. And I could sympathise with you, as my cousin bullied me. He didn't exactly take my things the way the other Ravenclaws take yours, but that was because I didn't have many things. But he did make certain I never got anything good like he did."
Luna smiled and replied, "I am glad to have helped you feel better. You are the first boy I've come across who is really tolerant of what I think. And the first boy to offer twice to help me look for my belongings. Now, what did you want to discuss with me?"
Harry sighed and told her about the prophecy, as he felt that Luna was the best person to help him deal with it. When he finished, Luna asked, "So you're saying either you have to kill You-know-who or he kills you? Who said this prophecy?"
Harry replied, "Professor Trelawnley did. She went into this trance and told Dumbledore. A real trance, so this isn't the kind of stuff she says in class."
Luna nodded. "I see. Even so, I still wouldn't trust this prophecy. There was a prophecy made about me. My grandmother was a seer and when I was born said that I would be severely injured when I was five, lose someone close to me at the age of seven, almost drown at the age of nine, and be married at fifteen. That never happened the way she said. When I was seven, I did fall out of a tree and sprain my ankle, but it wasn't serious. My mother died when I was nine, not seven. I did fall in the lake on my way to Hogwarts, but I didn't almost drown. And here I am at fifteen, and I'm not married or even engaged. Though the way things are going, I might be married or engaged when I'm seventeen."
Harry had to laugh over what Luna told him. "So your grandmother was off by two years for each incident, and except for when your mother died, they weren't as serious as she said. Hmm, I wonder if that could apply to the one about me."
Luna said, "I don't know. But I do know I don't think much of prophecies. And you said that Neville could have fit, except you were marked as the equal. In my opinion, I think you will defeat Voldemort eventually and nothing will happen to you. You've faced him five times, including when you were a baby. That has to mean that you will eventually win. So that part of Voldemort killin you has to be nonsense. Though you should be careful, just in case. Better safe than sorry.'
Harry nodded. "Thanks, Luna. You've made me feel better about the prophecy. You are the only one of my firends who knows about the prophecy right now. Don't telll the others. I'll tell them myself in my own time."
Luna promised that she wouldn't and Harry went to find Rhiannon.
February 1st, 2005, 8:53 pm
Harry went to the second floor and heard Rhiannon's voice. He went toward it and opened the door. Rhiannon was sitting in her bedroom and talking with Snape. When Harry entered, Snape frowned and Rhiannon gently admonished, "Harry, please remember to knock first. It's common courtesy."
Harry apoligized and said, "I want to ask you some questions, if you have the time."
Snape stood up and said in a neutral tone of voice, "You may do so, Potter. Rhia and are are done talking." Then in a nicer tone of voice, he said, "I am sorry over Black's death. I never liked him, because of the way he and your father treated me when I was in school. Still, we were on the same side, and I suppose he wasn't too bad."
Harry was very surprised by this and the fact that Snape was actually nice. He opened his mouth to reply, but Snape said in his usual curt manner, "There is no need. I understand how you feel," and swept out of the room.
Rhiannon smiled and gestured to the spot next to her on hte bed. "Sit down, Harry. And please call me Rhia. You don't need to say Rhiannon all the time."
Harry did so and began, "I want to know more about you and my parents. And about this spy business with Sn-Professor Snape."
Rhia nodded. "I'll start with the spy business. When I was in school, Voldemort was gaining power and supporters. People like Lucius Malfoy and Bellatrix Black joined him. Servus wasn't quite so keen, because his mother was a very nice person. But he had swallowed everything his father told him about pureblood superiority, so had soem leaning. I was concerned, and when I graduated, got Dumbledore to let me be a spy on Voldemort. Only he, McGonagall, and later James, Lily, and Sirius knew about it. Dumbledore was secret-keeper of my double agent status.
"While in Voldemort's ranks, I moticed Servus. I asked him why he was here and he told me that he wanted to be here and because of people like Lucius, who were nice to him. I reminded him that I had been nice to him, which just made him question why I joined. I then reminded him about his mother and some other things. He eventually realized that he didn't belong here. Besides, he didn't like killing or torturing people, except maybe as self-defense. I told him to talk with Dumbledore. Servus did so, turned to our side, became spy on Voldemort, and became my partner. We are very close, though we are careful to keep our relationship from Voldemort and the other Death Eaters."
Harry digested this, then asked, "Does this mean that you and Sn-Professor Snape are in love?" Rhia laughed and nodded.
"I guess you could say so. Servus isn't that bad of a person. He's just gloomy and tends to hold grudges. But he does have a tender side, though he only shows it to me. Anyway, when Voldemort is defeated, and if we're both alive, we plan to get married."
Harry replied, "I wonder how my father would react to his cousin marrying his enemy. He'd probably be furious at first. I know my mother wouldn't really mind."
Rhia suddenly turned sad. "I could have prevented their deaths. Servus and I noticed that Peter was in the ranks. I just assumed that he was a spy like me and hadn't been told. When James revealed that Peter was to be secret-keeper, I just told him that Sirius was better, but didn't force the issue. When he and Lily died, I realised I was wrong. I knew Sirius wasn't the traitor, because I would have seen him as Death Eater if he was. But he didn't get a trial, Peter disappeared, and I couldn't exactly do anything, since I could be arrested also, or have my status as spy revealed."
Harry patted her. "It's all right. You didn't know that Wormtail was a traitor. You just assumed that he was like you."
Rhia snapped, "It's all right? How can you say such a thing? If I knew, then you would be happily living with your parents! Instead you're living with Petunia Evans, I mean Dursley. She was nice enough at first, but then she got jealous of the fact that she wasn't a witch, and grew to hate everything magic. I've heard that she and Vernon spoil their fat son and just basically ignore you. George and Fred said that when they rescued you by flying car, there were bars on the windows! I at first was inclined to believe that they were exaggerating, but Ron confirmed it."
Harry sighed and replied, "They're nicer once I attended Hogwarts. Before I had to sleep in the cupboard under the stairs and-"
Rhia exploded, "Do you mean to tell me that they didn't give you a decent bedroom until you were eleven? That you spent ten years in a cupboard? Oh, Lily must be turning in her grave over this. And James probably wants to hex Vernon and Petunia! Oh, I knew that I should have insisted that Dumbledore have you live with me or at Hogwarts. But I didn't. I foolishly believed that Petunia couldn't be too bad to you, even if she hated magic. And Dumbledore did say that you were safer there, because of the wards. Oh, I am going to have a few words with him the next time he's here!"
Harry hastily calmed Rhia down and made excuses that it wasn't so bad. She did calm down, but she didn't look happy. "I still am going to speak to Dumbledore about this. Harry, I really can't talk now. I'm too worked up. Why don't you go find your friends and have Ron show you around? Or I can call Dobby and have do it."
Just then, Dobby walked in with a duster. He dropped it the instant he saw Harry and ran over to give him a big hug. "Oh, Harry Potter! You are here! Dobby is so happy to see you!" Harry smiled and gently pried Dobby loose.
Rhia then said, "Good, you're here, Dobby. Harry and his friend Hermione don't know the way around the house. Could you be so kind as to show them around? Their other friends will probably join them, even though they already know the way around."
Dooby eagerly said that he would and he and Harry went up to the third floor to find get Harry's friends. The tour of the house began, starting with the attics, where old furniture and trunks of clothes were stored. There was also a small but tidy room where Dobby, Winky, and Daisy slept. The third floor was bedrooms, bathrooms, a sewing room, and the drawing room where Harry and his friends had talked in. The second floor was more bedrooms and bathrooms, as well as a linen closet, a supply closet, and meeting room. The first floor had kitchen, pantry, dining room for guests, a smaller one for the family, a parlour, a living room, a sunroom, a library, a ballroom, and two bathrooms. Harry was very impressed and Hermione, as usual, fell in love with the library.
February 2nd, 2005, 2:36 pm
Chapter Three continued
After the tour, Dobby had to go help Winky make dinner. The third house elf, Daisy, showed up. She was neatly dressed in what had apparently been a pillowcase, but was now modified into the style of dress the ancient Greek women wore. Over this was a spotless and starched white apron and she had on a starched and spotless white cap.
"Good afternoon," Daisy said, curtseying at the same time. "I is Daisy, Miss Potter's house elf. Harry Potter, as you is a Potter, I is to also do what you say. And I also have orders to do what your friends say."
Hermione frowned and replied, "Daisy, you don't have to be ordered around like that."
Diasy looked up at her. "Well, Miss Potter doesn't exactly order me. She asks me to do things, and very politely. I say yes, I am happy to do it. Then I do do what she asks."
Hermione then asked, "What about wages? And wouldn't you like to be free?" Harry and Ron exchanged looks and muttered, "SPEW again." Hermione glared at them.
Daisy replied, "Oh, Daisy is not wanting to be free. Miss Potter is a good mistress. If she were mean, then I might feel like Dobby and want freedom. Miss Hermione, most house elves like working and don't want to be free. Please don't talk about this. The ones like Dobby, who have bad masters, may want freedom, so only worry about them."
Hermione was surprised. "So I should give up on SPEW. Or rather, I should advocate freedom for the ones like Dobby, and for the other house elves, just insist that they be treated nicely. But what about the ones at Hogwarts? They picked up the hats I made."
Harry interrupted, "Dobby was the one picking up the hats and stuff you knitted. And he ended up having to clean Gryffindor tower alone, since the other house elves were too insulted. Besides, I don't think you could have freed them, anyway. You don't own them. Only Dumbledore can free them, I think. If wasn't so, then how do you think our laundry gets done?"
Hermione turned red. "So that was why Dobby was wearing twenty hats when he went to warn us about Umbridge coming! I never realised!"
Ron soothed her and then Daisy said, "Mr. Ron and Mr. Harry are correct, Miss Hermione. I have to do some cleaning now. Good day, sirs and misses."
The boys then went to their room and girls went to theirs. Harry began talking with Ron and Neville and Ron said that Ginny wasn't really going out with Dean. It turned out that she had only said she had picked him because she wanted Ron off her back. In reality, it looked as if Ginny and Neville were getting together. Ron didn't really mind, as he was with Hermione, and Neville had fought bravely with them at the Department of Mysteries. All Ron did was tell Neville that Ginny would be good for him, and to not do anything rash or improper with her.
Harry then admiteed that he seemed to be showing some feelings for Luna. Ron was surprised. "Really? Then again, she isn't really loony. I mean, she did fight with us at the Ministry. She wasn't at all scared. And you said that she had made you feel better with her letter. I think she'll be good for you, Harry mate. Better than Cho, anyway."
Harry agreed. "Luna isn't they type to cry as much as Cho. And she doesn't have conflicting feelings or think that I have a relationship with Hermione. I sort of feel bad of how I once thought her weird. She isn't so bad. And I found out that the other Ravenclaws tease her and take her things. Of course, they always return them at the end of the year, but still."
Neviile and Ron exchanged startled looks. "We didn't know that!" exclaimed Neville. "But then, I guess most people aren't very tolerant. But you'd expect SLytherin to be the type that makes fun of others and takes their things."
Harry replied, "That's not true. You know my dad was in Gryffindor. But he took every oppurtunity to bully Snape. That's why Snape hates my dad, and therefore transfers it on me. Though he was a nice, for him, when he expressed his regrets over Sirius. Oh, and Rhia told me that she and Snape are together and that when Voldemort's gone and if they're both alive, they're going to marry. It seems that Snape does have a tender side, though he only shows it to Rhia."
Neville and Ron exchanged looks again. They looked disbelievingly at Harry, then left the room to ask Rhia if what Harry said was true. Harry shrugged and went acorss the hall to the girls room. He told Hermione, Luna, and Ginny about Rhia and Snape being together. Hermione and Ginny looked skeptical, while Luna took this calmly. She said matter-of-factly, "I had a feeling it was likely. I've seen Rhia and Professor Snape exchange tender looks. And Dad did say something like that. Well, not about marriage, but that they liked each other a great deal."
Ginny got up and said, "I'm going to ask Rhia if it's true. Part of me refuses to believe you, Harry, though I know you wouldn't lie to me about this. If Fred and George told me this, I'd totally not believe them and think they were joking." Ginny left the room and Harry then asked Hermione about her summer.
February 9th, 2005, 5:16 pm
Chapter Three continued
The boys and Ginny returned a few minutes later. "Rhia confirmed what you said, Harry," said Ron. "I couldn't believe it, but she got all starry-eyed and everything when she was talking about Snape. She said he was really romantic and a gentlemen and respects her. Now of only Snape could act that way to us. Well, not the romantic part."
Ginny giggled. "Of course not the romantic part." Hermione raised her brow and opened her mouth when Winky came up to them, envelopes in her hand.
"Excuse me, sirs and misses," she said. "Professor Dumbledore and Miss Potter is asking me to give these to you." She curtsied and handed the envelopes to Hermione. Harry looked at Winky. She was wearing an outfir similar to the one Daisy had been wearing, complete with the starched and spotless cap and apron. She looked much happier and did not show any signs of sadness or being hungover by butterbeer. Harry guessed that Winky must have recovered, now that she was working for Rhia.
Once Winky had gone, Hermione looked at the envelopes in her hand and gave a screech. "These must be our O.W.L. results! Here's yours, Harry, and here's yours Ron, and yours, Neville."
Harry took his envelope and opened it. The first piece of parchment he took out was a letter from Madam Marchbanks, congratulating him on his results and telling him to send the N.E.W.T.-level classes he wanted to take to Professor McGonagall. He then took out the second paper, which had his results.
"This is the grading policy.
Exceeds Expectations- 80-89
Troll- Below 50
You will need at least an acceptable to receive an O.W.L.
Here are your results:
Ancient Runes- Theoretical: N/A Practical: N/A No O.W.L.s
Arithmacy- Theoretical: N/A Practical: N/A No O.W.L.s
Astronomy- Theoretical: E (84) Practical: A (70)* Overall: A (77)
Care of Magical Creatures- Theoretical: O( 97) Practical: O(95) Overall: O (96)
Charms- Theoretical: O (93) Practical: E (89) Overall: O (91)
Defense Against Dark Arts- Theoretical: O (100) Practical: O( 110)** Overall: O(105)
Divination- Theoretical: N/A Practical: P (60) Overall: P (60)
Herbology- Theoretical: E (88) Practical: E (85) Overall: E (86)
History of Magic- Theoretical: P (65) Practical: N/A No O.W.L.s
Muggle Studies- Theoretical: N/A Practical: N/A No O.W.L.s
Potions- Theoretical: E (87) Practical: E (83) Overall: E (85)
Transfiguration- Theoretical: O (90) Practical: E (86) Overall: E (88)
You have acheived a total of seven O.W.L.s.
* Due to the disturbance during the Astronomy practical, a grade curve has been used and all scores have been increased by 5 points.
**Your Defense practical was very spectacular, especially with the Patronus at the end. That is why you have granted ten extra points. You have the highest Defense grade in history and it is under consideration for both a N.E.W.T. and O.W.L. grade."
Harry was very pleased that he had done well in Defense and that he had done well in his major classes. He was disappointed that he hadn't gotten an Outstanding in Potions, which meant Snape wouldn't accept him for N.E.W.T.-level Potions. He then turned to his friends and asked what they had gotten.
Hermione had gotten an Outstanding in all her subjects, including Muggle Studies and Divination, which she had sat the tests for. Her lowest grade was her Astronomy practical, a ninety. All her other grades were 100, excpet for her Ancient Runes, which was 99, and her Defense practical, which was also a 99. She had 12 O.W.L.s and was very pleased by her success, since all her scores, except Astronomy and Defense, were the highest in the year and in history. The only person that had ever acheived higher was Dumbledore.
Ron's grades weren't so spectacular, but he did about as well as Harry. His Defense grade was obviously lower, and he had passed History, simply because he hadn't been interrupted by a vision halfway through. He had gotten eight O.W.L.s. Neville also did tolerably well. His Charms and transfiguration practical were a little lower than Harry's, but he had scraped E's. His Herbology grades were all O's, and thanks to the D.A., he had managed to scrape an O in Defense. He had gotten an E on the Potions practical and surprisingly achieved an O in the theoretical part. He explained that a number of the plants in Herbology were also used in Potions, so that was why he had gotten an O. Neville also received an E in History of Magic and had scraped an Acceptable in Divination. He had gotten nine O.W.L.s.
Ginny and Luna congratulated the four on their grades and then Rhia showed up. "I hope you did well on your O.W.L.s, guys. Oh, by the way, Sevrus will be teaching Defense. All those who will received an E will be in his class. His standards are normally an O, but Dumbledore talked him into accepting E students."
Harry's mouth fell open. "Snape finally got the Defense job?"
Rhia smiled. "It's Professor Snape, Harry. And yes, Servus did get the job. Dumbledore couldn't think of anyone else to take over, except me, but I refused it. However, I will be taking over the Potions position. So I will be the new Potions Master, or should I say Mistress. And my standard is E, so you will be allowed in my class Harry, Ron, and Neville, if you did receive E's."
Harry, Ron, and Neville assured her that they did. Then Rhia turned to Hermione. "I heard that you received the highest scores in your year, except for Defense, which Harry lead. I am very proud of you and you will definitley be awarded." Hermione beamed and Rhia continued, "And I also heard about your Defense grade being under consideration for a N.E.W.T, Harry. You will most definitely receive a reward for this. And I think Ron and Neville also get rewards. And you two had better go tell your parents and grandmother about it. They'll be pleased to hear that you got eight and nine O.W.L.s."
Ron and Neville nodded, then went downstairs to find Mrs. Weasley and Mrs. Longbottom. Hermione borrowed Hedwig so she could tell her parents about her results. Rhia smiled at Harry. "And what reward do you want, Harry? I think there is a new broom out. A Firebolt II. It's faster than the original Firebolt and specially designed for seekers and chasers, who need to be fast and able to manuveur. I could get you that and you could give your old broom to Ron. Though I might get him a Nimbus Two Thousand Two for his reward. Anyway, it's up to you."
Harry thought for a moment and said, "A new broom sounds wonderful. Though I'm still keeping my Firebolt. Sirius gave it to me." Rhia gave Harry a sad smile.
"I thought so. Oh, by the way, Minerva has your broom. The next time she come by, she'll return it to you."
Harry thanked Rhia for telling him and then asked, "Is it safe if I went for a walk?"
Rhia nodded. "There's all sorts of wards and spells over the property. And there's an anti-apparation spell that extends for a mile in each direction. So it's prefectly safe."
Harry smiled, then found Luna and asked her to go for a walk with him. Luna accepted and the two left the house and went for a walk about the grounds.
February 10th, 2005, 8:25 pm
Chapter Three continued
Harry gazed around the property, while Luna just gazed into the sky. Suddenly she said, "What do you think of Heaven, Harry?"
Harry was startled by this question and after a moment's thought, replied, "I don't know. I'm not a Christian or anything. But I would like to think it exists and that Sirius and my parents are there, watching over me."
Luna smiled a dreamy smile. "I know Mum is in Heaven. And her voice is beyond the Veil in the Department of Mystries. And someday I will see her again. Mum was a Christian, you know. She was very sweet and loving and raised me to be like her. I have her hair and eyes. And on Sundays, I often go to the Hogwarts chapel."
Harry was surprised. "Hogwarts has a chapel? I never knew that!"
Luna nodded. "It's a lovely building not too far from the Quidditch pitch. I'm sure you've seen it. The chaplain is Reverend Leary. He's Muggleborn and a very lovely man."
Harry then recalled seeing the building, but he had never gone in or asked what it was. "Maybe I should go there. I'm not intending to be a Christian or anything, but I would like to receive some comfort and peace for awhile. Though I'm getting that form you."
Luna gave a laugh and it was much different from her usual one. This one was sweet and silvery. "You're very sweet, Harry. That's why I like you. Oh, I once had a crush on Ron, but he never returned it. I know he thought I was 'loony', though he never actually said so. But it's better now. He does respect me for what I did at the Ministry. Anyway, I'll show you around. There's a lovely flower and vegetable garden. And a minature Quidditch pitch. I'm sure your father practised there when he was home for the summer holidays. And there's an old barn and there's even a horse in there. And I think nargles might be in there."
"Nargles?" asked Harry. "I thought you said that they often infest mistletoe."
"They do," replied Luna. "But they can also be found in barns. They like to hide up in the hayloft, under hay and straw. That's what Daddy says, anyway. And sometimes they'll hide up in trees, behind thick clusters of leaves or flowers."
Harry smiled and wondered if nargles really could exist. But then, Luna and her father had found a Crumple-horned snorkack, so maybe nargles were real. Then he remembered the scene in the Room of Requirement when Luna had pointed up to the mistletoe over him. He wished now that he had kissed her, or that she had kissed him, instead of Cho. Luna led Harry to the barn and they entered. Suddenly Harry bent his head and gave Luna an impulsive kiss on the cheek.
She blinked, then said, "That was nice, Harry. That's the first time a boy kissed me." She smiled, then hesitantly turned and kissed him on the lips. Harry almost freaked out. After a while, he murmered, "Wow. That was much more pleasant than when Cho-" He realized it wouldn't be tactful to mention Cho kissing him and stopped.
Luna shrugged. "Good. I never had much practice. And I heard from Ginny that Cho didn't work out for you. She cried to much and you got tired of her. Then when Michael got dumped by Ginny, Cho went to him for comfort."
Harry smiled and the the two then went to visit the horse. It was a very pretty golden mare with pure snow-white mane and tail. She had soft brown eyes and was very pretty. A brass plate on the stall door read "Aurora." Harry and Luna stroked Aurora and fed her an apple and a carrot from a bin nearby. Then the two went up to the hayloft to look for nargles. After an hour's search, they didn't mind anything except three mice, two rats, a bat hanging in the corner, and Crookshanks with a female cat.
Harry and Luna exchanged looks when they found the two cats. "It looks like Crookshanks has found a mate," said Harry.
Luna nodded. "I believe that other cat is Sapphire. Mrs. Weasley said that she belonged to Rhia and was very lonely. I guess she isn't lonely now."
Harry laughed. "We'll have to Hermione about it. In case Crookshanks decides that he doesn't want to leave when it's time for us to return to Hogwarts."
The two left the barn and went to explore the Quidditch pitch and the garden. When they were done, they went back to the house. Harry told Hermione about Crookshanks and Sapphire being together. Hermione took it well, saying that Crookshanks had been lonely and could use a companion. Then Dobby came upstairs and announced that dinner was ready. So Harry and his friends went down to the family dining room for supper.
February 15th, 2005, 2:49 pm
At dinner, Harry saw that Professor McGonagall was there. Halfway through, she looked up and said, "Potter, I have your Firebolt. See me after dinner and I'll return it to you."
Harry nodded and said that he would. Then Rhia said, "Harry, after that, could you please see me? I have some things I need to discuss with you. And you had best bring Neville and Luna with you."
Ron asked, "What about me and Hermione and Ginny?" Rhia turned to look at him.
"I will see you three after I speak with Harry, Luna, and Neville." Ron nodded. Everyone quickly finished the main course and then Dobby and Daisy brought out dessert. It was treacle tart, strawberry shortcake, and chocolate pudding. Harry took a helping to pudding, a square of cake, and two small tarts.
After dinner, Harry got his Firebolt fro McGonagall. He then put it in his room and with Neville and Luna went to see Rhia. "I have asked you here because of a prophecy. Or rather, two prophecies. Neville, I assume you remember the prophecy that got smashed in the Ministry? Professor Dumbledore heard it being given and informed Harry of the contents. And I believe you, Harry, told Luna about it?" Harry nodded.
"Well, the prophecy says that a boy who was born at the end of July and had parents who thrice defied the Dark Lord would be marked as his equal and have the power to defeat him. This boy would either have to kill the Dark Lord or be kiled by him. As Harry was marked, he is the one, but you, Neville, could have fit the prophecy."
Neville gasped, then said, "Now that I think about it, I did hear my grandmother mention a prophecy once. She talks in her sleep and I heard her say the word prophecy plus something else about power to defeat. I didn't think much about it."
Rhia replied, "When the prophecy was made, both the Potters and Longbottoms were informed of it, because it could apply to their sons. And now a new prophecy has been made, this time by me, apparently. I have some trace of the Inner Eye and two weeks ago, at an Order meeting, I went into a trance, like the kind Sibyll Trelawnley went into when she made the first prophecy. Dumbledore had it recorded. Anyway, here it is."
She brought out a pensieve and pointed her wand at it. A figure of her appeared and a hollow voice said, "A girl born of moonlight will rise up and help the boy who is destined to defeat the Dark Lord do so. She will have strange powers and the gift of seeing things others are unable to. Also, two with flame-red hair and two with brown hair will assist the girl born of moonlight and the boy who will defeat the Dark Lord."
The voice then ended and figure disappeared. Rhia said calmly, "Some of us are a little unsure, but it is assumed that the girl born of moonlight is you, Luna. You will help Harry defeat the Dark Lord. And the two with red hair have to be Ron and Ginny and the two with brown hair have to be Neville and Hermione. They will also help."
Harry then said, "The way this prophecy is worded, I'll definitely defeat Voldemort, through the help of my five friends.
Rhia nodded. "Apparently so. And I have some other peice of news. You will resume Occulemency lessons again, but this time I will teach you. Severus, lovely man that he is, still has a grudge against James and wasn't very effectual. Oh, and Luna and Neville, I believe you should join Harry in those lessons. And now I have to call in Hermione, Ginny, and Ron. They need to be told about the second prophecy and about Occulemncy lessosn. And another piece of information."
She stood up and headed for the door, then paused. "Then again, they don't need to be told about the second prophecy. Or the first one." Harry was puzzled, until she opened the door and saw Ron and Ginny there, with Extendable Ears in their hands. Hermione was also there, frowning.
"I told you that you shouldn't be using the ears!" scolded Hermione.
Rhia laughed. "No problem. It saves me the trouble of telling everything twice. Come in and sit down." Ron, Hermione, and Ginny did so.
"I assume you heard about the prophecy that got smashed. And you know that Harry has to kill the Dark Lord and that Neville could have fit it." Ron nodded. "And you know about the second prophecy, where Luna and Harry will defeat the Dark Lord and you guys, plus Neville, will assist them." Hermione nodded at this. "And you guys will be taking Occulemncy lessons with me, along with Harry." Ginny nodded her head this time.
"All right then," said Rhia. "Here is my final piece of news. You will be allowed to informally join the Order. That is, you won't be allowed on missions, but either Remus or I will brief you. You will get news, and not garbled-up stuff from eavesdropping. Dumbledore decided that you, Harry, should not have information withheld from you. And he also knew that you would pass it along to your friends, so he decided to save the trouble of everything being told several times and had them included."
Harry grinned at this. "Perfect! I get briefed, but I can focus on Voldemort and not have to worry about missions and stuff."
Hermione put in, "Besides, if were sent on missions, it would disrupt our schoolwork."
Ron rolled his eyes at this, but didn't say anything. Rhia smiled and said, "Okay, that's settled. You six may go now. Oh, and one last thing. Harry, Dumbledore says that the army named after him may continue, as it was very effective and could be sort of like the junior version of the Order. That is all."
Harry nodded, then he and his friends left the room. They began discussing the new prophecy Rhia had made and how it would work. It was established that Luna, Ron, Hermione, Ginny, and Neville would help Harry defeat Voldemort. But they were curious as to how they would go about doing it. None of them could come up with any answers, including Hermione. In the end they gave up.
March 1st, 2005, 8:47 pm
Chapter Four continued
The nexy day, Harry went for another walk around the property with luna. They explored the barn again. They didn't find any nargles or other interesting creatures, but did find Crookshanks and Sapphire snuggled together in the hay. The two laughed and climbed down from the hayloft. Ron and Hermione walked in the barn.
"Have you seen Crookshanks, Harry and Luna?" asked Hermione. "I can't find him."
Harry laughed and Luna replied, "Crookshanks? He's up in the hayloft."
Ron frowned. "Why would he be up-Oh, is he with Sapphire again?"
Hermione scurried up the ladder and exclaimed, "Crookshanks, there you are! Come with me. You haven't been fed today."
There was a hiss and Hermione said, "Your lady friend can come too. I doubt she has been fed today, either. What has gotten into you?"
Harry, Ron, and Luna burst into laughter. Hermione climbed down and Crookshanks and Sapphire bounded down. She shook her head. "Crookshanks is as crazy over Sapphire as Ron is over me. Only Ron is much nicer about it. The way Crookshanks and Sapphire are acting, I think they want to populate this world with junior versions of themselves."
Harry pointed out, "Well, that's the point, isn't it? There needs to be kittens, otherwise cats would die out. And a male of a species is going to want to um, produce offspring with the female of the species."
Hermione shook her head again. "Yes, but they don't need to be together all the time. Honestly, I don't know if I can get Crookshanks to return to Hogwarts with me."
Ron replied, "It's not a big deal, 'Mione. If Crookshanks likes it here with Sapphire, he can stay. The Order members will see that he's fed and all."
Hermione glared at him. 'When did you start calling me 'Mione, Ron? Though I do admit it's better than having Grawp calling me Hermy."
"Who's Grawp?" asked Luna, having never met or heard of him.
"He's Hagrid's little brother," replied Harry. "Or rather, younger half-brother. He's not really little, in terms of size, anyway. He's much bigger than Hagrid."
"Ooh, is he a giant?" asked Luna excitedly. Harry nodded and she continued, "Prehaps Professor Hagrid will introduce me to him. Where is he, anyway? Does Grawp live in the Forbidden Forest with the centaurs and stuff?"
Ron replied, "Yes, he does. I've never met him, though, as Hagrid introduced Grawp to Harry and Hermione when I was playing Quidditch. When Gryffindor won the cup."
Luna nodded. "Cho wasn't very happy about losing. She burst into tears and then ran off to Michael Croner for comfort. She wasn't very nice to me, but didn't insult me the way Marietta did."
Hermione then said, "Lovely conversation, but Crookshanks and Sapphire need to be fed now. I'll see you guys later. Come on, Ron." She, Ron, and the cats left the barn.
Harry and Luna wandered about the garden and Harry picked a boquet of irises and roses for Luna. She breathed in the scent and said that roses had been her mother's favorite flower. Then the two went insdie so Luna could the flowers in water. After lunch, Harry, Ron, Ginny, and Luna played Quidditch, while Neville and Hermione watched. Luna was a decent flyer, but she wasn't much for scoring goals or catching snitches. It was obvious that she would never really become a good Quidditch player. Still, the four had fun, especially when Rhia joined them an hour later.
Rhia had been chaser for Gryffindor when she was in school. She hadn't played the postion for some time, but she was an excellent flyer and quickly got herself reaccoustomed. Luna, Ginny, and Rhia played chaser, trying to score goals against Ron. Harry zoomed about, going after the snitch, which was charmed to stay only in the playing field. He was pleased to be back on a broomstick and practising manuveurs.
After three hours, they all went inside to wash and have dinner.
March 8th, 2005, 3:34 pm
Three days later, Harry received a letter informing him that he had been granted a N.E.W.T. in Defense Against Dark Arts. He was extremely pleased by this and that evening, Rhia presented him with a charmed silver bracelet that would protect him from all spells except the Unforgiveables and the book Quidditch through the Ages as a reward. Ron was slightly jealous of Harry receiving a N.E.W.T, but he didn't show it and sincerely congratulated him.
Mrs. Weasley then came to Harry. "Your birthday will be in two days, Harry dear. We should give you a party, as you've never had one before. So how would you like your birthday celebrated?"
Harry considered, then replied, "A small party would be fine. I just want a cake and to celebrate my birthday with my friends and those I love."
Mrs. Weasley smiled. "Of course, Harry. Dobby and Daisy will obviously make a lovely cake for you. Winky and I will decorate the house. Which reminds me, Neville's birthday is the same day as yours. He said a small party would be fine, too. So there'll be two cakes, and we'll all be celebrating yours and Neville's birthdays."
Harry grinned. "Great! I'll talk with Ron and the others."
Two days later, it was Harry's and Neville's birthdays. At the foot of their beds, they found dress robes of gold trimmed with red to wear. It was a gift from Rhia and Snape. The boys dressed and went down to the dining room. The three house elves had made a huge breakfast, with all the things the boys liked. After breakfast, Harry and Neville, plus their friends, went out to play Quidditch. Neville actually turned out to be a decent flyer, now that he had gained some confidence. He wsn't much good at scoring goals or seeking, though, so he played beater. While he wasn't up to Fred and George's level, he was okay, and did better than the two who had replaced the twins.
Harry smiled and said, "Neville, you're not too bad. With some practise, you'd be a great beater. You should try out for the team when school starts."
Neville smiled back. "You think so? I as a bit scared of flying, after what happened at the first lesson. But ever since last year, I've thought about working on it. And Rhia and Ginny did give me some lessons."
Hermione had agreed to fly, but she wasn't great. She could stay on her broom, and she flew fairly well. Unlike Harry, Ron, and Ginny, however, she couldn't really do anything fancy, and she was a bit nervous about diving. Hermione would never make it as memeber of a Quidditch team. But she did like the experience, though she was a little scared part if the time.
At noon, everyone went inside for lunch. After lunch, it was time for the party. Everyone went inside the living room. There were wizarding versions of muggle party games. After the games, it was time for cake and presents. Dobby and Daisy wheeled in two cakes. One was a vanilla cake iced with red frosting. There were candided snitches and broomsticks done in gold forsting. The other cake was a chocolate one with gold frosting. There were candided flowers and plants in green frosting.
Sixteen candles were on each cake. Everyone sang happy birthday and then Harry and Neville blew out the candles on their cakes. After that, they cut the cakes and handed everyone a slice. There was butterbeer, milk, and pumpkin juice to drink. After each person finished a slice of cake, they were given another slice formt he cake they didn't eat. That way each person would have a piece of both cakes.
When all the cakes were eaten, gifts were handed out. Harry and Neville each received a book on Defense from Remus and a box of joke stuff from Fred and George. Charlie gave them each a model of a dragon. Hermione gave Harry a book on Quidditch and Neville a book on Herbology. Ron gave them each a Chudley Cannon poster. Ginny gave Harry a box of chocolate frogs and Neville a box of sugar quills and fizzing whizbees. Luna gave Neville and Harry each a six month subscription to The Quibbler. Hagrid gave Harry Sirius' flying motorbike, telling him that Sirius had planned to give it himself. He made Harry promise first to not ride it without Rhia or Remus along as teacher until he was of age. Hagrid then gave Neville a wallet, which unlike Harry's didn't have fangs and was harmless. Mr. and Mrs. Weasley gave them each a sweater and a tin of fudge and biscuits. Tonks gave Harry a Weird Sisters record and Neville a model of a Nimbus 2000. Dobby and Winky gave Neville a pair of socks, one with a pattern of a green vine, the other with a pattern of wands and Harry a red wool hat. Daisy gave Harry a red and gold scarf and Neville a gold hat. The rest of the order collectively gave them each a cauldron, and foe glass, and in Neville's case a sneakascope, and in Harry's case, a remebrall.
Harry loved his presents, though he felt a bit sad when he was presented with Sirius's motorbike. He wondered if Sirius was up in Heaven, watching him and smiling. Luna slipped her hand in his and whispered, "Don't be sad, Harry. I think your godfather wuld be happy that you are having a wonderful birthday with Neville."
Harry smiled. "Thanks, Luna. I feel better now."
After that, Harry and Neville put their presents away, except the candy and biscuits, which they began eating and sharing with their friends. At six, there was a large and delicious birthday dinner, with leftover cake, pudding, and treacle tart for dessert. After dinner, Harry played chess with Ron. Since it was his birthday, Ron graciously allowed him to win the two games they played. Finally everyone went to bed. Harry smiled, having enjoyed his first ever birthday party.
March 15th, 2005, 3:33 pm
Chapter Five continued
The day after Harry's and Neville's birthdays, the letters from Hogwarts arrived. Harry and Ron were offered the position of co-captain of the Quidditch team. Professor McGonagall had orginally wanted Ron to be it, because he was good at strategy. But she had some doubts to Ron's ability, as he hadn't pulled himself together until the final match. So she had decided to have Harry be his co-captain and help him.
Harry then looked over his booklist and list of supplies. The booklist was composed of all the N.E.W.T-level books for the classes he was taking. As he looked at his supplies list, he noticed that at the bottom, dress robes was required. He groaned, realising that there would probably be another ball. Then he brightened, remembering that now that he was dating Luna, he wouldn't have to worry about who to take and would likely have a better time than he had at the last ball. In addition, he wouldn't have to get new robes, since Rhia and Snape had given him a set yesterday for his birthday.
The next week, there was the trip to Diagon Alley to get the supplies. Members of the Order went along for protection, but they stayed a short distance back so as to not arouse suspicion and because the teens wouldn't want adults to be directly with them. Harry and his friends went to Flourish and Blotts to get thier books, then to Madam Malkins for the robes. After that, they went to Fred and George's new store.
It was small, with two stories. The first floor was the store itself, a small room in the back where they kept their accounts and did experiments, and a bathroom. The second floor had another bathroom, a tiny kitchen, a small living room, and two bedrooms. One bedroom was for the twins, while the other was for Lee Jordan, who had come to help the twins with the store. The store had the counter where the cash register was, and aisles mostly stuffed with their products. A few of the shelves had very few products, which meant they were popular and had been selling out very quickly.
Fred and George greeted Harry and his friends, leaving Lee to take care of other customers. Then the six explored the shop and selected things they wanted to buy. Fred was busy restocking the shelf that contained Skivving Snackboxes. With Hogwarts due to start shortly, many students were buying them. Harry, Ron, and Ginny bought several boxes, and Neville and Luna bought three. Hermione frowned at this, but even she bought one box.
When they took their purchases to the register, George said, "Oh, no. You, Mr. Potter, as out financial backer, don't need to pay. You have free rein on our store, as well as five percent of our profits. Ron and Ginny, as family, you also have free rein and don't need to pay. Hermione, Neville, and Luna, as friends of family and our financial backer, you also have free rein and you don't need to pay either, unless of course you want to make a donation or investment to us."
They were all very pleased to hear it, thought Hermione, Luna, and Neville did make a donation of a few galleons or sickles each. Fred, George, and Lee thanked them and then Harry and his friends left the store. Before they did, they congratulated them on such a fine store and Fred told Harry that every month, five percent of profits would be transferred into his vault. Harry tried to protest it, but Fred and George told him that as finiancial backer and main inverstor, he had to take it.
In the end Harry stopped arguing and followed his friends out. They went to Quality Quidditch Supplies, where Rhia got Hermione a Comet Two Sixty so she could practise flying. Rhia also got Neville a Cleansweep Seven, which he could use in case he tried out for beater. As a present from Fred and George, Ginny was given a Cleansweep Eleven, the same as Ron. It would come in handy when she tried out for chaser, and she wouldn't have to use a school broom like she did last year.
After a stop to get potion refills, quills, ink, and parchment, everyone had lunch at the Leaky Cauldron and dessert at Florean Fortescue. Then they all went back to Rosebud Mansion at Spinner's End.
March 21st, 2005, 3:54 pm
Chapter Six (Draco's Detour)
The next evening, Harry had a dream. It wasn't like his normal nightmares of Sirius falling through the veil, or being in Voldemort's mind. Instead, he saw Draco Malfoy, pacing angrily at what must be Malfoy Manor. "Mother! Why did Father have to get arrested? Couldn't he have paid that idiot Fudge to get released? Or claimed that the Dark Lord was controlling him."
Narcissa Malfoy appeared next to Malfoy. "Now, now, dear. It is very sad that Lucius was taken. But that idiot Fudge hads just been removed form office. Amelia Bones is Acting Minister, and she doesn't take bribes."
Malfoy raged, "But the demetors are on the Dark Lord's side now! "It would be easy to-"
Narcissa interrupted, "Azkaban is being guarded by aurors, dragons, and security trolls. If the Death Eaters are able to get past the aurors, they'd be burned by a dragon or whacked with a club by a troll. Freeing the prisoners would be almost impossible."
Malfoy sighed. "Fine! But Mother, can't we go visit Father? Find out any information from him. And see if I can't join the Dark Lord's ranks as a junior Death Eater."
Narcissa Malfoy looked sad. "Don't join the Death Eaters yet, Draco. You could end up like your father. And you know if you should fail the Dark Lord, you'd be punished with Crucio. And if you fail too many times, you could die."
Malfoy nodded. "All right, Mother. I won't join yet. I'll wait a few years."
Narcissa smiled. "Good. Draco, we can visit your father tomorrow, if I can get permission from the Ministry."
Harry woke up then, wondering about his dream. He got up and went to look for Rhia, before realising that she would be in bed and it wouldn't be wise to wake her. Harry sighed and decided to go to the kitchen to get some milk. When he went in, he found Luna sitting at the table, drinking hot chocolate and talking with Dobby. They looked up when Harry entered.
"Hello, Harry," said Luna. "I suppose you couldn't sleep, like me?" Harry nodded.
Dobby came over. "Would you like something, Harry Potter? Some biscuits and a cup of milk or cocoa?"
"A cup of cocoa would be fine, Dobby," replied Harry. "And thanks."
He sat down and Dobby brought over a cup of hot chocolate and a plate of biscuits. "Luna, I had this very weird dream. I was in the Malfoy's house, and saw Draco Malfoy talking with his mother. He was mad that his father was in Azkaban and wanted to get him out. His mother told him that Amelia Bones was Acting Minister, and she doesn't take bribes like Fudge did. And she also said that Azkaban was now being guarded by aurors, dragons, and trolls."
Luna nodded. "If you read the Daily Prophet today, or rather yesterday, as it's past midnight, you would have found out about Fudge being removed from office."
Harry waved that aside. "Yes, that's wonderful news. But then Malfoy said he wanted to visit his father and get information and see if he could become a Death Eater. His mother talked him out of becoming a Death Eater for the moment, but they're going to visit Lucius Malfoy tomorr-I mean today, if they can get permission. I woke up then."
Luna said, "Is it possible that your dream really happened? I don't mean that you're in Draco's mind the way you can be in Voldemort's. But it's possible that it really happened, and you got a vision of it as a dream."
Harry paused. "I did think of that. Bt I wasn't too sure. I'm glad that you are in the kitchen. I wanted to talk with someone, but didn't want to wake anyone up. SO I decided to come here for something to drink, and then go back to bed. Luckily you were up, so I didn't have to wait until morning to tell about my dream."
Luna smiled. "Yes, it was lucky I couldn't sleep. Your dream is very interesting. Prehpas later to day, we'll find out that the Malfoys visited, or tried to vist, Lucius Malfoy. That would mean your dream wasn't just a dream."
Harry took a biscuit and ate it, then washed it down with some hot chocolate. Harry decided to put the matter of his dream aside and asked about crumple-horned snorkakcks. Luna eagerly told him about the one that had gone by her camp. After awhile, they finished the biscuits amnd drink. They went up to bed, and bid Dobby good-night. Dobby smiled. "I hopes you sleeps well now. Dobby must be going to bed now too."
Harry paused. "Dobby, do you stay up every night?"
Dobby shook his head. "No, Harry Potter. I only stay up on Mondays and Thursdays. Daisy takes Tuesdays and Fridays, and Winky Wednesdays and Saturdays. We all sleep on Sundays, since that is when we have our day off."
Harry nodded. "I see. Well, good-night, Dobby. See you in the morning." He took Luna's hand and they went upstairs to their bedrooms. In front of the girl's room, Harry kissed Luna good-night. Then Luna went in and Harry went to his bedroom. He crawled into bed and went to sleep, feeling better after the talk he had had with Luna and Dobby.
March 29th, 2005, 3:14 pm
Chapter Six continued
The next evening at dinner, Mr. Weasley remarked, "h, Narcissa Malfoy and her son Draco showed up the Ministry today, requesting a pass, to visit Lucius Malfoy. Amelia Bones issued them the pass, but required two aurors to escort them and make sure they don't try to help Lucius escape."
Harry dropped his fork and several people looked at him strangely. His friends, Rhai, and Remus didn't, since he had told them about his dream that morning. Mrs. Weasley looked concerned. "Is anything the matter, Harry dear?"
Rhia said, "Harry is fine. He just had a dream last night and-"
Snape interrupted, "A dream? Potter, I thought you were told to practice Occulemncy."
Rhia put a hand on his arm. "It wasn't that sort of dream, Severus darling. Harry saw Draco Malfoy talking to his mother in the dream. He was complaining about his father being prison. Narcissa explained that Fudge wasn't in office anymore, and that anyone trying to free the Death Eaters would either be ttacked by aurors, burned by dragons, or whacked by trolls. Then Draco said he wanted to join the Death Eaters, but Narcissa talked him out of it for the moment. Then she promised to try to see if they couldn't visit Lucius in Azkaban. Harry was just startled that his dream had come true."
Snape's face cleared. "Well, that's different." He smiled at Rhia and suddenly kissed her on the cheek in front of everyone. Ginny burst into giggles, and Snape turned pale and looked very uncomfortable. He had apparently forgotten about the others when he had kissed Rhia. As he was mostly done with dinner, he quickly excused himself.
Everyone looked amused, and Rhia said, "I'll bring up some dessert to you later, Severus. You'll be in your room, I suppose?" Snape nodded and he left. Daisy and Winky then came in with dessert. Halfway through, Rhia clutched her arm and gasped.
Everyone looked concerned and Rhia hastily said, "I have a meeting to go to. Excuse me. I'll fetch Severus." Harry figured out that Rhia had to go to a Death Eaters' meeting and he said, "Rhia, be careful. And tell Professor Snape to be careful too."
Rhia managed a wan smile. "I will, Harry. Severus and I know Occulemency." She hurried out the dining room.
The rest of dessert was very quiet, except for Daisy's loud sobs in a corner. Hermione ran over to comfort her, but Daisy was having none of it.
"Miss Potteris nice and she does dangerous things! Daisy cannot stop her, but I is worried. What if He-who-must not-be-named find out about her or Master Snape?"
Hermione patted her. "Daisy, Rhia and Professor Snape both know Occulmency. They'll be all right. I don't think it's likely Vol-sorry, You-know-who, will find out about them."
Daisy stopped crying, but she looked angry. "Beg pardon, Miss Hermione, but you is not knowing. There is a chance that Miss Potter and Master Snape will be found out." Then she burst into tears again and ran to the kitchen.
Hermione sighed in defeat and returned to the table. She half-heartedly finished her treacle tart, and then Dobby and Winky came out to clear the table. The assembled diners got up and quietly left the table. Once upstairs, Harry turned to his friends.
"I can understand why Daisy is so upset. Rhia is a nice person, and it's terrible for her. I've never liked Snape much before, but I can appreciate the danger he's in, going to those meeting. It's very possible that Voldemort will find out their spy status."
Ron replied, 'I was suspicious of Snape before. Dumbledore may have trusted him, but I wasn't ready to. But now, I think I can. Which proves that prehaps not all Slytherins are evil, just like not all Ravenclaws and Gryffindors are good."
Harry knew that he was referring to Marietta and Wormtail. "Ron, I think maybe we should forgive Marietta. Sure, she did betray the D.A., but she never really wanted to be a part of it. She came because Cho dragged her to the meetings. And there was all the pressure from Umbridge, and her mum was pressuring her, too. I suppose one of us was bound to snap. And it just happened to Marietta."
Hermione, Luna, Ginny, and Neville agreed with Harry, but Ron still looked a little unsure. Then he paused. "I suppose that jinx she received was punishment enough. And she did seem a little reluctant about the meetings. I suppose if I forgave Percy for acting like a git, I can forgive Marietta. Just don't ask me to forgive Wormtail."
Harry replied, "I wouldn't. I can't forgive him for betraying my parents and getting Sirius in Azkaban." Luna and Neville looked puzzled, so the trio and Ginny had to explain about the Mauraders and Harry's parents going into hiding to them.
At ten o'clock, Rhia appeared with a very battered and bruised Snape. Harry and his friends were very shocked when she appeared in the bedroom, holding Snape. Ron and Neville quickly got off Harry's bed and helped Rhia lay Snape down. Ginny ran off to fetch her mother, and Harry went to get Professor McGonagall. She came up to the room, with Madam Pomfrey, who was also an Order member.
Madam Pomfrey quickly checked Snape over and began tending to him. Once Rhia was satisfied that Snape would be all right, she took the six teens to her room. "Voldemort has somehow found out about Severus' double agent status. Apparently being on the back of Quirrell's head alerted him to it. Anyway, he didn't reveal his knowledge until tonight. That's when he called Severus forward and announced it to everyone. I was furious and wanted to help Severus, but he gave me this look that told me to stay where I was and not do anything foolish. I somehow managed to keep my composure as he was put under the Cruciatus Curse by Voldemort, and then whipped by Wormtail. Then he was chained to a stake and left to suffer. Voldemort announced that Severus would suffer more of the same over the next few days, until it was though fit to kill him. Then the meeting proceeded with plans to break out the Death Eaters in Azkaban. The meeting ended at nine, and I left. But I returned in my animagus form and waited until it was safe to rescue Severus. Luckily he was in no condition to escape on his own, so he wasn't guarded."
Rhia finally lost her composure then and burst into tears. Harry and his friends gasped in shock and tears came into Ginny's and Hermione's eyes. "That's horrible!" exclaimed Harry. "Luckily you rescued him."
Rhia said fiercely, "Harry, I don't want to pressure you, but I hope you kill Voldemort soon. I hate that b@stard. He was responsible for Lily's and James' deaths, Sirius being in Azkaban for twelve years, then dying by Bellatrix, Remus losing his closest friends, and Severus' suffering. And as soon as Severus is well again, we are getting married. I am not waiting until the war is over. I might be found out by Voldemort and be killed."
Then she got up and went back to the boy's bedroom. Harry and his friends followed her. There they found out that Snape was in stable condition and would be fine in couple of days. But he would have to stay in bed for the next week or two to regain full strength. Everyone was relieved and Madam Pomfrey levitated Snape to his own bedroom. Dobby came in to change the sheets, but Harry was a little hesitant to sleep where Snape had been lying before. Finally Dobby transfigured the bed into another one, and Harry was able to go to bed.
April 5th, 2005, 3:51 pm
Harry woke up the next morning to a horrible pain in his scar. He also felt Voldemort's anger and guessed that Voldemort had discovered that Snape was gone. He hurried over to Snape's room and found Rhia sitting by Snape's bedside. "I-Voldemort''s angry! I woke up to feel his anger and there was a horrible pain in my scar. He must have discovered Sn-Professor Snape disappearance."
Rhia's lips tightened. "Obviously. Harry, tonight I'll be giving you your Occulmency lessons so you won't wake up this." Suddenly she clutched her arm and Snape moaned and touched his. "Harry, the Dark Lord is summoning us to another meeting. He probably wants to find out what happened to Severus. I'll have to tell him that Dumbledore had him rescued. He thinks I'm spying on Dumbledore, and I don't want him to find out I am a double agent. Tell the others I'm going." She strode out the room.
Madam Pomfrey came in and asked, "Harry, what are you doing here? Professor Snape shouldn't be disturbed."
Harry replied, "I had to tell Rhia that I woke up to my scar hurting and that Voldemort was angry." Madam Pomfrey flinched at the name. Harry ignored it and added, "Then Rhia was summoned to a Deth Eater meeting. I'll go now." Madam Pomfrey nodded.
"Professor Snape will be all right, Harry." Harry nodded and left the room. Before breakfast, he told his friends what had happened.
"Terrible," muttered Ron. "I don't like Snape, and he was a greasy, evil git. But I can't believe that he was found out. And poor Rhia. She could be found out like Snape.
After breakfast, Rhia returned, face pale. "The Dark Lord was furious and demanded to know where Severus was. I told him that Dumbledore rescued him and used my Occulemncy to make it seem like the truth. He believed me, of course, but he was furious that he didn't have guards and took it out by using the Cruciatus Curse on a few of us. I need to rest, since I was put under it a couple of times. Could you please tell Daisy or Dobby to bring up some breakfast to my room?"
Hermione had dropped her cup when she heard the news and it smashed to the floor. "Rhia is playing a dangerous game. What's to say that Voldemort won't find out that she's a double agent, too?"
Mrs. Weasley said, "Now, Hermione, calm down. Rhia is smart and brave, and will be able to protect herself." She then pointed her wand at the pieces of china and said, "Reparo!" The fragments flew up and the cup was repaired. "Now, you six go and occupy yourself with other matters."
Harry and Ron tried playing a game of chess, but their heart wasn't into it. They just named random moves and the chess pieces kept snapping tbings like "Why there?" or "You could have taken his knight!" The two boys paid no attention.
Finally Harry said, "Let's just stop. We can't think except about the danger Rhia is in. Though Snape will recover to be able to teach Defense once school starts."
Ginny said dully, "At least Voldemport can't come here and take Snape. It's too well warded, and Dumbledore's the secret keeper, so the Death Eaters wouldn't be able to see this place unless he told them."
Rhia came in. "Cheer up, guys. I haven't been caught during the last war, and I don't intend to be caught during this war. And on August 28th, Severus and I will be married. Won't that be nice? We'll have a small wedding with the Order members, and you guys. Dumbledore will marry us, of course, as he's got the power to do so. And you six will be in the wedding party. Hermione, Ginny, and Luna, you'll essentially be the bridesmaids, and Harry, Ron, and Neville, you'll be groomsmen. Remus will be the best man, and Tonks the maid of honor. I suppose Molly will be the matron of honor, and of course Arthur will be her partner."
The others perked up at this announcement and Hermione and Ginny asked about dresses. Luna, being her usual self, didn't show quite as much enthusasim, but she was excited about everything. Rhia laughed. "Okay, let's see. Severus will be wearing formal black robes. I'll be wearing a new white bridal gown trimmed with blue. I'll borrow the necklace your mother wore at her wedding, Luna, and I'll have on my mother's earrings. So I'll have on 'something old, something new, something borrowed, and something blue.' You girls will be wearing pale blue bridesmaid dresses. You boys will wear navy blue dress robes. Tonks and Molly will wear pale green dress robes, and Arthur and Remus will have on darker green dress robes."
That evening, Harry had his Occulmency lesson. He did much better with Rhia teaching him and was able to throw Rhia out of his mind about a few false starts. Luckily, she did not comment on the memories she saw, though Harry noticed that her eyes flashed with anger. Finlly the lesson ended at eight thirty and he returned to his room.
The next day, Harry and his friends were taken to Diagon Alley to be measured for their dress robes for the wedding. Two days later, the dress robes were picked up by Fred and George and given to them. Of course, the twine binding the package exploded in Rhia's face and colored water streamed down her face. She merely paughed and told the twins that it was a good prank. After several minutes, the water dried, but her face was colored in striped of red and gold. Luckily, it came off with a charm. The dress robes were handed out and the Harry and his frriends hung them up.
April 5th, 2005, 8:53 pm
Chapter Seven continued
Snape recovered in the next two weeks, and the day of the wedding arrived. The formal parlor had been decorated, as well as the ballroom where the reception was to be held. The entire house was worked up over the event. Of course, it wouldn't be the wedding of the century, but it would feel that way to Rhia and Snape.
After a small lunch, everyone got dressed. Harry put on his new navy blue dress robes and then pinned a red rose on his chest. He brushed his hair, but as usual, it didn't do much good. He did manage to get it to flatten a little though. Ron and Neville were also in their dress robes and also had a red rose pinned. When they were ready, Remus and Mr. Weasley came for them. They were neatly dressed in their green robes and looked very handsome.
In the hall, the girls were assembled. Hermione, Luna, and Ginny were very pretty in their pale blue dress robes. Hermione had obviously used hair potion again, for her hair was sleek and shiny. The girls had a wreath of pale pink roses in their hair, except for Ginny. Hers was a very dark pink color that was almost red, since pink didn't go very well with red hair. All three girls had on make-up and jewelry. Luna was wearing her butterbeer cap necklace, but the caps all had a picture of roses on them, and somehow looked perfect with her robes.
Tonks and Mrs. Weasley both showed up in their pale green dress robes. Tonks was in her natural look, with a few touch ups, which meant she had her father's brown hair, only wavy, and the classic Black features. Both she and Mrs. Weasley had red roses in their hair. All the women and girls carried a bouquet of red roses and ferns.
Everyone went downstairs and to the parlour. The piano had been spelled to paly the Wedding March. Remus and Tonks went in first, followed by Mr. and Mrs. Weasley. Then Ron and Hermione went in, followed by Harry and Luna, then Ginny and Neville. The party gathered at the front, near the bridegroom, Snape, and Dumbledore. Harry saw that Fred and George were grinning and wondered if they'd pulled a prank.
The the music grew a little louder and Rhia appeared in the doorway. She had a lacy white gown with blue embroidery. Pink roses were in her hair and she had a misty white veil. She carried a bouquet of white roses. Harry had to admit that she was gorgeous. Rhia slowly walked down the aisle on the arm of Kingsley Shacklebolt, who was giving her away. Normally the father of the bride would do it, but since Rhia's parents were dead, Shacklebolt took the place.
Once Rhia reached the front of the room, Professor McGonagall removed the spell form the piano. Dumbledore began speaking. "Dearly beloved, we are here today so that Snape will get himself legshackled to Rhia." There were some snickers and titters and Harry saw that the twins were shaking with supressed laughter. harry wondered if they ahd tampered with the wedding vows. Dumbledore continued, but he said things like "For the few measly years until you croak", and "For however many galleons you have", and "Whether or not you get sick."
Finally Dumbledore said in a mild tone, "Oh dear, someone seems to have tampered with the wedding vows." At that, Fred and George burst into wild laughter. the girls were giggling, and Harry was laughing. Snape looked somewhere between annoyed and amused, and Rhia dropped her bouquet due to her laughter.
Eventually things clamed down and Fred and George changed the wedding vows back into the proper form. The ceremony began agian, and this time Dumbledore said "Till death do you part", "In sickness and helath", "For richer and poorer," and everything else he was supposed to. Then Snape and Rhia said "I do." Remus handed Snape a ring and Tonks handed Rhia another. Snape and Rhia then exchanged rings and kissed. They were married. As soon as they kissed, rose petals fell down in a hsower and mini fireworks went off, thanks to Fred and George.
Harry spotted Professor McGonagall wiping away tears, Daisy sobbing happily in a corner, and Dobby and Winky giving each other happy hugs. Everything soon quieted down and everybody went to the ballroom for the reception. Emmeline Vance took pictures, and Fred and George took some funny ones. There was lots of delicious food, and some dancing. Harry danced with Luna, took one dance each with Tonks, Hermione, Ginny, and Mrs. Wealsey, and the required dance with the bride. Tonks wasn't a great dancer, though, as she was clumsy and stpped on his toes frequently. But he didn't mind very much.
Toward the end, Rhia and Snape cut the large, five -tiered wedding cake. The very top tier the put aside to 'dream on', and they shared the fourth tier themselves. Harry enjoyed his slice of cake. Then Rhia stood up on her chair and announded, 'It is time to throw the boquet! All unmarried woman and girls gather together!"
After a breathless moment, Rhia tossed her boquet over her shoulder. It flew in an arc. then landed right in Tonks' arms. Rhia turned around. "Congratulations, Tonks! You'll be our next bride!" Tonks turned red and Remus whispered to her.
Then Remus said, "Excuse me everyone, but Tonks and I are enaged. So it looks as if Tonks will be the next bride."
There were lots of congratulations, and then the wedding and reception was over. Harry went to his room to change and he discussed everything with his friends.
Next update: Harry and his friends will finally be returning to Hogwarts.
April 6th, 2005, 11:00 pm
September 1st came and Harry and hios friends returned to Hogwarts. Ordermembers escorted them to King's Cross Station. McGonagall, Snape, Rhia, and Professors Flitwick and Sprout rode the Hogwarts Express to protect it in case of attack. Of course, with all the teachers on the train, Malfoy and his two goons didn't show up bother Harry and his friends.
Ron and Hermione went to their prefects meeting and Harry, Ginny, Luna, and Neville found a compartment to themselves, like they had last year. After an hour, Ron and Hermione returned, three others with them, one being Colin Creevy. 'Colin is the new Gryffindor male prefect. The other, the brown haired girl, is Courtney Ross. And the other girl is Samantha Welsh, Sam for short. She's the new Ravenclaw girl prefect."
Sam had long black hair and blue eyes. She was quite pretty and smiled sweetly. "Hello, everyone. Luna has told me about you guys. You would be the famous Harry Potter, of course, and the other boy is Neville Longbottom, I suppose. And I already know Ginnhy, as she's in my Herbology class. Luna, how was your summer? You wrote and said that you finally proved the existance of the crumple-horned snorkack. Maybe that will get the other girls in out dorm to stop teasing you and calling you Loony."
Luna smiled back. "It was wonderful. I sent you a picture of the crumple-horned snorkack, as well as the August issue of The Quibbler with the article on our trip."
Sam nodded. "I enjoyed reading it." She then turned to Hermione. "I hope I can be as great a prefect. I've heard that you're the smartest witch in the entire school."
Hermione blushed. "Oh, it's nothing, Sam. I work and study hard."
Courtney shook her head. 'True, but you really are clever, Hermione. I've a cousin in Ravenclaw and he wondered why you weren't sorted there. He said that you could do a Protean Charm, and that was N.E.W.T.-level."
Colin interrupted, "Shouldn't we be patrolling the train? That's what Professor McGonagall and the other head of houses said to do."
Hermione jumped. "Thanks for reminding us, Colin. My, you certainly are serious about your prefect duties." The prefects each grabbed a snack, then began their patrol. Harry wondered why Colin was prefect. He was excitable, liked to take pictures with his camera, and with his younger brother Dennis, hero-worshiped Harry. But Harry didn't really know any other Gryffindor fifth year boys, except Andrew Kirke. And all he knew about Andrew was that he was a terrible beater. Prehaps Colin was the most suitable choice among the fifth year boys in Gryffindor.
Hermione and Ron returned after a few minutes. They talked and had some more snacks, but they went out to patrol again. When the train was getting close to Hogwarts, Harry pulled on his school robes. Rhia stopped in for a few minutes. 'Excited, hmm? Oh, and I'll have to be strict to you at school. Otherwise Draco and other children of Death Eaters will be suspicious. Draco Malfoy already has lost respect for Severus and I heard him mutter about capturing him and turning him in to the Dark Lord. I don't want him to think that I'm a double agent, too."
Harry nodded. 'We understand, Rhia."
Rhia smiled. 'It's Professor Potter, Harry. Remember that."
"Shouldn't it be Snape, Professor?" asked Neville. "You married him."
Rhia shook her head. "No, Mr. Longbottom. Otherwise the Death Eaters will find out that I married a traitor to them, and will suspect that I'm one, too."
Rhia then left and a few minutes later, the Hogwarts Express pulled in. Hagrid was calling the first years to him. Harry and his friends said 'hi', before heading for the carriages.
Next update: The Sorting, beginning-of-term feast, and announcements.
April 7th, 2005, 3:43 pm
Chapter Eight continued
The carriages soon pulled into the drive. Ginny could see the thestrals, but Hermione and Ron couldn't, since they hadn't seen Sirius fall through the Veil. Neville and Luna could already see the thestrals, so it didn't matter for them. Harry fell quiet and thought of Sirius as he stepped out and entered the entrance hall. Luna noticed and slipped a hand into his.
"It'll be all right, Harry. And be happy that you were able to spend some time with your godfather and that you got to know him. I was ever so sad when Mum died, but I was glad that I had nine years with her."
Harry smiled. "Thanks, Luna. You always manage to cheer me up."
The familar and nasty voice of Draco Malfoy came to them. "Potter, are you going out with that Loony Lovegood? Really, can you sink no lower? You're friends with a mudblood and a poor blood-traitor, and suddenly pick an crazy girl to date. Have you no taste? I mean, at least Cho was pretty and popular."
Harry whirled angrily. "What business is it of yours? I don't care two knuts about who you date, Malfoy."
Luna smiled serenely and looked at Malfoy oddly. "What are you staring at, Loony?" demanded Malfoy.
"Draco, I must say, you are quite handsome," said Luna, sounding a bit like Pansy Parkinson fawning over him. "You have such lovely blonde hair. Are you by any chance part veela?"
Malfoy looked horrified. "Me? Part veela? Of course not!" He turned and hurried away, Crabbe and Goyle following him.
Harry and his friends burst into laughter. "Wow," said Ron admiringly. "I can't believe you put Malfoy off like that, Luna."
Luna replied, "He is very annoying. And sometimes appearing a bit 'loony' may scare people off."
They hurried into the Great Hall and sat down. Professor McGonagall walked in with the Sorting Hat, a number of first years following her. Harry was surprised to see that there were at least fifty of them. There hadn't been that many during his sorting. He asked Hermione about it.
She whispered back, "Well, when you were born, it was in the middle of a war. During wartime, people don't have many children. It's when the war is over that there are many. After World War two, there was a baby boom. The same case could be made for the first war against Voldemort."
Harry nodded and Professor McGonagall described the sorting. Then the hat burst into song.
"I was created for this
Many years long ago,
To be able to tell where
Students ought to go.
First is noble Gryffindor
They are brave and true.
Prehaps that will be the
Perfect house for you.
Second is clever Ravenclaw
And those there are wise.
They like books and learning
No matter what their size.
Third is loyal Hufflepuff
And they value hard work.
And you can be sure that
They will never, ever shirk.
Fourth is cunning Slytherin
They will achieve their ends.
They have much ambition,
But maybe not many friends.
We are now in dark times
And we must work together
And not be divided at the
First sign of stormy weather.
These four houses are great
And must try to get along
Together they're very strong
And now I end my song."
Everyone clapped at the end of the song and Harry noted that the Sorting Hat had asked everyone to get along and not be divided like it had in the song last year. Professor McGonagall unrolled the list of names and called out, "Abernathy, Steven." A short boy with mouse-brown hair came forward. After a minute, the Hat called out, "RAVENCLAW!"
Next was Anderson, Teresa. She was sorted into Gryffindor. After her was Barrett, Jessica, who was sorted into Hufflepuff. Then came Braddock, Mitchell, who was sorted into Slytherin. Harry remembered a Malcolm Braddock had been sorted into SLytherin two years ago and guessed that Mitchell was his brother or cousin. After thirty minutes, Professor McGonagall go to the P's. Ron's stomach was growling and he was complaining about the number of new students and the fact that the sorting was taking so long.
Harry tuned Ron out and saw that Professor McGonagall was calling out, "O'Mailey, Fiona." A very pretty girl with waist-length red hair and blue-green eyes stepped forward. She had some freckles on her nose and looked very mischievous. The Sorting Hat placed her in Gryffindor. However, Fiona didn't join the Gryffindor table. She stepped to one side and the name "O'Mailey, Sean" was called. A handsome boy, also with red hair, only not as dark as Fiona's and much shorter came forward. Harry guessed the two were twins. Sean was also sorted into Gryffindor.
The two came over to the Gryffindor table and sat down. They had identical looks of mischief on their faces and Harry was reminded strongly of Fred and George. The sorting continued and ended with "Zeller, Robert", who was sorted into Hufflepuff. Professor Dumbledore stood up. "All I have to say is, 'Enjoy the feast!'" Food instantly appeared on the plates and Ron hurriedly dug in. Harry also filled his plate quickly, but he wasn't starving like Ron was, so didn't stuff food down his throat.
The twins Sean and Fiona spoke halfway through the feast. "Are you Ron Weasley, the brother of Fred and George Weasley and friend of Harry Potter?" asked Fiona.
Ron looked up, surprised. "I am. Who are you two?"
Sean replied, "I'm Sean O'Mailey, and this is my twin sis Fiona. Fred and George mentioned you."
Fiona continued, "Me brother's in Ravenclaw, and he told us about what they did to annoy that teacher, Umbridge. And we've bought a number of things at their shop."
Sean nodded. "That we did. They're our idols. We've a liking for pranks and such."
Harry could detect an Irish accent from them. Seamus leaned over. "Are you two Irish? I'm Seamus Finnigan, by the way."
Fiona nodded. "That we are. Well, our da is, anyway."
Sean added, "Our ma is Scottish. Highlander. She's bonny and very nice. Da fell in love with her Scot's brogue and beauty."
Fiona smiled. "Like, 'och, mon, you're nae *** be botherin' me' ." Harry had to admit that she imitated a Scottish accent perfectly.
Sean turned to Harry. "And you're the famous Harry Potter, I'm thinking? And you are Hermione Granger. Brian said you were the smartest witch at Hogwarts."
Hermione blushed and nodded. Fiona nodded at Ginny and Neville. "And you're Ginny Weasley, I'm thinking. Fred and George mentioned you also. And I'm not that sure about you, but I guess you'd be Neville Longbottom. You look like your ma. She was me mother's friend at Hogwarts. Ma has a few pictures of her."
Neville looked interested. "Really? That's neat!We have to get to know each other better."
After awhile. dessert appeared and Harry filled his plate with his favorite desserts. When everyone was done, Professor Dumbledore stood up. "Welcome to a new school year, everyone. As you all know, the Ministry has acknowledged the return of Voldemort. You will be safe here, bit please don't go around looking for trouble. Now, first I would like to welcome Rhiannon Potter, who has consented to be our new Potions Mistress. Yes, she is a cousin of the famous Harry Potter, but she has said that she willl not favor him over any of the other students."
There were some laughs. Professor Dumbledore continued, "Professor Snape, the former Potions Master, is now our Defense teacher. He will do an excellent job. Second, I would like to say that the Forbidden Forest, like its name, is forbidden. A few of our older students would be wise to remember this. Third, our caretake, Mr. Filch, asks me to remind everyone that magic is out of bounds. Also the list of contraband objects has expanded to include, I believe, all products from Weasley Wizard's Wheezes. And finally, I would like to say that a plaque has been set up next to the bit of swamp in honor of Messers Fred and George Weasley."
There were claps and Harry muttered, "I have got to see the plaque. I knew what Fred and George would go down in school history, but I never expected a plaque."
Ron said, "And the twins will be delighted that their stuff made it to Filch's contraband list. That just makes people want their products more."
Hermione nodded. "True. The surest way to get someone to do or want or have something is to forbid it."
The school song was sang, Sean and Fiona singing to the tune of a a very slow song, like Fred and George had done. They were the last to finish. then everyone was allowed to head for the common room. Colin and Courtney, under supervision form Hermione and Ron, called the first years to them and lead them to the Gryffindor common room. The password was "Portable Swamp", obviously in tribute to Fred and George. Harry smiled and headed up the the dorm room, which now had a sign that read, "Sixth Years."
April 11th, 2005, 3:37 pm
Harry got up the next morning and got dressed. When he was ready, he grabbed his bag and went down to the Great Hall for breakfast. Ginny, Hermione, and Neville were already there. Hermione handed Harry and Ron their schedules. "Here you are. And you two are a bit late. The mail already arrived."
Harry nodded and absentmindedly spread some butter on toast while he looked over his schdeule. His first class that day was Potions. Since Rhia was now the teacher, he didn't dread it the way he usually did. After Potions was Transfiguration and after lunch was Defense Against Dark Arts. He didn't really like the thought of Snape, but Snape couldn't really bully him in a class he was good at. Besides, Harry had some understanding of Snape, and din't hate him as much.
Halfway through his toast, he heard a gasp from Hermione, and some giggles from across the table. He looked up as Hermione exclaimed, "Harry! Your face is a bright yellow!" He was confused, then looked across the table. Sean and Fiona, as well as the other first years, were laughing. Fiona dug into her bag, then pushed a hand mirror to him. Harry looked and saw that his face had indeed turned yellow.
"How-what happened? Why is my face yellow?" demanded Harry. Hermione, Ron, Ginny, and Neville were laughing at the look on Harry's face.
Sean pushed a saucer of strawberry jam at him. "Put this on another slice of toast."
Harry did so and took a few bites. The laughing stopped and he looked in the mirror again. His face was back to normal. Harry continued eating the bread and jam, until laughter began again. He snatched up the mirror and saw that his face now was a bright red. Fiona, between laughter, said, "Eat some of the buttered toast."
Harry was skeptical, but did as Fiona said. A few bites later, his face was back to normal. He was about to take another bite, when he stopped and looked suspiciously at Sean and Fiona. Sean said, "When you eat the buttered toast, your face turns the color of butter, yellow. When you eat some of the bread and jam, your face turns red, like the color of the jam. To remove the color, you've got to eat the opposite. Like when you have the jam, you've got to eat the butter to turn to normal."
Fiona added. "Fred and George sent us this this morning and we decided to test it out. We're the ones who invented it, by the way. We sold them the idea for twenty Skivving Snackboxes, ten fake wands, two small bags of Tongue-Ton Toffees, two bags of Canary Creams, two boxes of Wildfire Whizbangs, and twenty galleons."
Hermione frowned. "Sean and Fiona! That wasn't nice! Well, since it was only a harmless prank, I'll let you off. I don't want you two getting detention on the first day."
Harry said, "Looks like the new Fred and George are here, Hermione. When they left, it was obvious that someone, or two someones, would take their place."
Ron added, "And I know Fred and George will laugh their heads off when you write to them about your testing out your new idea, Sean and Fiona."
Fiona grinned. "Och, it's nae very hard. I mean, not very hard. The two of us always had a head full of prank ideas."
Sean added, "And maybe our bein' born on April Fool's day had somethin' to do wi' it. Me da always said so."
Ron groaned. "Fred and George were born on April Fool's Day, too."
Sean's eyes gleamed. "Really? Fiona and I have the same birthdays as our role models? Oh, that's grand!"
Fiona nodded. "Oh, we canna believe it!" She pulled out parchment and quill and began writing a letter to Fred and George right away.
Harry finished his breakfast, but avoided the dish of butter and saucer of jam. He chuckled over Fiona and Sean and knew that Hogwarts certainly wouldn't be boring that year, especially with replacements for Fred and George. When he was done, he gathered his things and headed for the Potions classroom.
April 13th, 2005, 2:57 pm
Chapter Nine continued
Rhia gave Harry and his friends a smile as they entered the room. Harry looked around and saw that the room wasn't as gloomy. There were some soft pale green and blue hangings on the walls and everything was very neat and tidy. The rest of the class filed in and Harry was pleased to see that Crabbe and Goyle hadn't made it into the class. However, Draco Malfoy was still there, along with Theodore Nott, Millicent Bulstrode, and a dark-haired boy that Hermione said was named Blaise Zabini.
Rhia strode to the front of the room. "Good morning, class. I am Professor Rhiannon Potter. As you may have heard last night, I am Harry's cousin. But I will not favor him or anyone else. I will make sure you all do your best at Potions. If you should fail, I will not hesitate to remove you from my class. All of you here are in this class because you managed to acheive an Exceeds Expectations or higher on your Potions O.W.L. And I expect you to mantain that standard. Is that quite clear?"
All the students nodded. Rhia took attendance and then assigned everyone to work on brewing the Polyjuice Potion, or rather the first stage of it. Since Harry had helped Hermione brew an illegal one in second year, it was easy enough for him and he didn't make any mistakes. Rhia sat at her desk in the front of the room. She did some paperwork and would occasionally look up to see how everyone was doing. Toward the end of class, she got up and walked around, inspecting the work.
"Well, well, Mr. Longbottom, you seem to be doing quite well. Professor Snape informed me that you weren't one of his better students. But it seems he was wrong. But then, you did get an E on your owl." Rhia gave him a small smile and walked over to Harry. "Mr. Potter, your work is quite well, also, though Professor Snape did say you weren't brillant at Potions either." Malfoy snickered and Rhia turned her head.
"Mr. Malfoy, it is very rude to laugh at others, even at those you don't like." Malfoy turned red and muttered an apology to her. Harry was surprised by this, but gathered that it might have been because Rhia was a Death Eater. As the students cleaned up, Malfoy came by and tried to 'accidentally' knock over Harry's cauldron. Harry managed to grab the handle, so only a little potion splashed on the sides.
Rhia came hurrying over. "Mr. Malfoy, please move away, or I ill be forced to take some points from Slytherin. Mr. Potter, as for you, you can have a detention for your clumsiness. Clean up and then I want you to stay so I can arrange your detention."
Harry was very shocked, but then realised that maybe Rhia was looking for an excuse to talk privately with him. He quickly mopped up the small spill and when everyone had left, he went to Rhia's desk. She smiled and said, "Harry, you don't really have detention. You'll really have an Occulmency lesson with me. Every two weeks, I'll cpome up with an excuse to give you detention, but in reality, you'll just be having an Occulmency lesson with me. I really can't have you use your old excuse of Remedial Potions, since people would get suspicious. Anyway, tomorrow evening, after your dinner, like around seven, show up at my office. It's Severus' former office, so'll you know where it is. I'll give you your lesson. Now, you better go, Harry."
"All right, Rhi-I mean Professor Potter," replied Harry. He smiled bnack and then hurried out the classroom. Ron, Hermione, and Neville were waiting for him. He quickly explained about how his detention was really an Occulemency lesson. The four of them then hurried on their way to Transfiguration.
April 14th, 2005, 7:49 pm
Chapter Nine continued
In Transfiguration, the class worked on human transformation and at the end of class, Professor McGonagall made an announcement. "Due to the events going on right now, it has been decided to offer Animagus lessons to those in fifth year and above. Every week, on Saturday evening, there will be a lesson. If you are interested, please show up at the Great Hall this Saturday evening."
Instantly the class was abuzz and Professor McGonagall had to quiet everyone down so she could assign the homework. Harry was definitely interested in the animagus lessons and wondered if he could manage to become an animagus like his father and Sirius. As he wrote down the assignment, Harry wondered what his form would be and if it would turn out to be a stag like his father. Though he doubted it, since he wasn't James in nature, only in looks.
The class filed out, the students discussing the news. As Harryentered the Great hall, Ernie McMillian and Padma Patil came over to him. "Harry," said Padma, "will the D.A. continue this year?"
Harry was bit taken aback by this question. After a moment he replied, "I don't know. We have a compentant teacher this year."
Ernie shook his head. "But Snape is biased toward the Slytherins, and he might not be that effective a teacher. We know you, and you were effective. Thanks to you, all those in fifth and seventh year scored at least an Exceeds Expectations on their Defense O.W.L. or N.E.W.T. You have to run the D.A. again."
Padma added, "We have to be able to fight You-Know-Who, The Ministry has acknowledged his return, and we have to be ready to fight in case he attacks. You're the best for teaching us."
Harry sighed. "All right, the D.A. will continue. Dumbledore did say that it oculd continue if I wanted it."
Padma said, 'Thanks, Harry! I'll go tell the Ravenclaws." Ernie said that he would tell the Hufflepuffs and two went to their house tables. Harry sat down and informed the other Gryffindors that the D.A. would continue that year. Sean and Fiona smiled.
"Can me and Fiona join, too?" asked Sean. Harry nodded at him.
"Yes, new members are welcome. I'll put up a sign announcing it."
Fiona exclaimed, "Grand! Sean and I have been working on defense over the summer. When we got our Defense books, we went over them. We're determined to go fight the Dark Lord."
Sean added, "Our ma and da fought in the last war, and we're going to fight in this one."
"Good luck," said Harry. "But you know it's going to be dangerous. You could be killed or something, Sean and Fiona."
Fiona drew herself up proudly. "I dinna care. The Dark Lord is evil and he and his Death Eaters need to be killed. Sean an' I will be fighting in this war."
Sean nodded. "That we are. And nothing is going to stop us."
Just then, an owl flew in and dropped a package in front of Fiona. She ripped it open and found an envelope and a box of sweets. "Ma sent us some sweets, Sean." Then she looked in the envelope. She read a letter, then handed it to Sean to read. Then she took out a picture and gasped. She looked up and said, "You might want to see this, harry and Neville."
Harry took the picture and he and his friends looked at it. The wizard photo showed two red-haired girls, and two with brown hair. The four girls were wearing blue robes, looked to be around sixteen, and were smiling, arms around each other. Harry recognised one of the girls to be his mother Lily, and another two to be younger versions of Alice Longbottom and Rhia. He had no idea who the last girl was.
Harry flipped the photo over and saw some writing, It read, "Me, Rosalynn McIntyre, with my friends Rhiannon Potter, Lily Evans Potter, and Alice Parker Longbottom."
Hermione asked, "Is Rosalynn your mother, Sean and Fiona?"
Sean nodded. "Aye. That picture is of Ma and her three friends. They called themselves the Four Princesses and were sort of like the female version of the Marauders. The group that James Potter and his three friends were part of."
Fiona smiled. "Ma told us of a trick she and her friends did to get back at the Marauders their second year. They tricked the four boys into meeting them, and then when they left, shot some spells at them. The Marauders laughed and turned around, saying that the trick failed. But what they didn't realise was the back of their robes flashed, 'Princesses Rule, Marauders Drool.' A word on each robe."
Harry and his friends laughed at that. Sean added, "Oh, but the Mauraders were furious when they discovered what had happened. Well, not Remus so much. He wasn't really the prankster type. I heard from Ma that James Potter asked Lily to go out with him, but Lily said no. Sirius then tried to get Ma to go out with him, but Ma said no to him. Peter then asked Alice, but Alice had a crush on Frank Longbottom and refused."
Fiona then sighed. "But now only Ma and Professor Potter are left of the Princesses. Aunt Lily's dead, and Aunt Alice is in St. Mungo's and is as good as dead."
Harry nodded sadly. "But their children know each other, at least." He finished his lunch, thinking about the picture Fiona and shown him. His mother and her three friends were so happy in the picture and looked as if they didn't have a care in the world. But now, twenty years later, everything was different.
April 25th, 2005, 5:01 pm
With some dread, Harry walked into the Defense classroom. All the sixth year members of the D.A. were there, as well as two Ravenclaw girls named Mandy Brocklehurst and Lisa Turpin and the Slytherins Blaise, Theodore, Malfoy, Pansy, Millicent, and a girl that Hermione said was Daphne Greengrass. There was also another girl named Sally-Ann Perks, that Harry realised was a Gryffindor girl that he'd never taken notice of.
Harry found a seat and waited for class to begin. He noticed that Malfoy and Pansy were sneering at Snape, Theodore and Millicent looked bored, and Dapne and Blaise were the only Slytherins that actually looked somewhat interested. Whent he bell rang, Snape began class by handing out a quiz to see what everyone knew. As Harry answered the questions, he was slightly surprised to see that Malfoy wasn't answering the quiz at all. Then he realised that Malfoy probably found out that Snape had been a double agent and stopped being respectful.
When the quizes were collected, Snape demanded, "Malfoy, why have you not done the quiz? The same for you, Miss Parkinson."
Mafloy sneered, "Why should I answer such an idiotic quiz? You finally get the Defense job and will really teach us Defense, instead of Dark Arts. And Father is most disappointed in you. He thought you were loyal like him."
There were some questioning looks. Daphne raised his hand. "Is it true, Professor? You're not a loyal servant like Draco's father?"
Snape whirled around. "That is enough, Miss Greengrass!" However, Harry saw Snape just slightly nod his head in answer to Daphne's quesion.She and Blaise exchanged happy looks and Harry wondered if prehaps they weren't like the 'typical Slytherin'. There had to be some who were ambitious, but not really into the pureblood thing.
Snape then turned to Malfoy and Pansy. "I am still the Head of Slytherin, and you have to obey me. Now, for not doing the quix, five points will be deducted from Slytherin. And if you two continue this rebellion, I will start giving out detentions." Then he angrily threw down the quizzes on his desk and snapped, "Take out your books and work on the first hex found in chapter one. You will partner up. The person who has the spell cast at them may use a Shield Charm to deflect it. If he or she is successful, then their partner will receive the hex. For homework, read chapter one and summarise it for me in an essay. It must be at least six inches long. Now get to work!"
Everyone did so, and Harry ended up pairing with Neville. As he practised the hex, he noticed that Snape was at his desk, grading the quizzes. Harry also noticed that Mafloy wasn't interested at all in practising the hex with his partner, Theodore Nott. Theodore did practise, but Malfoy kept shielding himself from it. When it was his turn, he just stood there and would occasionally halfheartedly wave his wand and say the spell.
Finally class ended and everyone gathered their things. On the way out, Blaise and Daphne came over to Harry. "May we join your Defense group?" asked Daphne. "Not all of us Slytherins are like Malfoy and his gang of friends."
Blaise nodded. "Our families are neutral on the subject of purebloods and Muggles. And we really would like to be able to defend oursleves form the Dark Lord." He pushed back his hair from his face and looked hopefully at Harry.
Harry suddenly remembered that Blaise and Daphne hadn't been part of the Inquisatorial Squad. Hermione whispered, 'They're in my Arithmacy class and they're really decent for Slytherins. They haven't ever called me 'Mudblood' like Malfoy does."
That settled the matter. "Okay, Blaise and Daphne," said Harry. "You can join the D.A."
Blaise and Daphne looked happy. 'Wonderful!" exclaimed Daphne. "You can hold the meetings whenever the Slytherins have a Quidditch practise. We're not on the team, and I don't think the other Slytherins will join, except maybe Millie Bulstrode. She told me that she was halfblood and not into the pureblood thing."
Harry nodded. "Excellent. I'll have a sign up about the first meeting later today." Blasie and Daphne smiled and left. Harry and his friends headed for the Gryffindor common room.
April 27th, 2005, 3:32 pm
Chapter Ten continued
That evening, Harry posted up a sign announcing D. A. meetings. Colin, who was patrolling the halls with Courtney, saw him. "Are D. A. meetings starting again? Great! I really could use it. Ever since Dennis and I joined last year, our defense work has improved."
Courtney added, "And now that it's legal, I can join. Ginny told me last year that you were planning a defense group, but I told her that I wasn't going to join. Meeting in the Hogs Head was not something I felt like doing. And I had no wish to go against Umbridge. My mother expressly forbade me to go against her, even if my family didn't think you were crazy last year. Now, if it was my O.W.L. year, then prehaps I would have joined, but since it wasn't I didn't do so."
Harry replied, "Good. We could use new members. But Courtney, you're a Gryffindor. Gryffindors are brave. So you could have-"
"I know!" exclaimed Courtney, turning red. "But I've always obeyed Mum, so I didn't join. It wasn't as if I was too cowardly to join. I would have, if Mum didn't tell me to not do anything that would antagonise Umbridge!"
"Okay, okay," said Harry. "I'm not blaming you or saying you were a coward."
"Good!" snapped Courtney. "Because I'm not a coward. If Voldemort were standing right here, I'd swallow my fear and attempt to fight him!"
Harry raised his brow. "I believe you. If you're not afraid to say his name, then you would be able to be brave and fight him."
Sam walked over. "What's going on? Court, why do you look so red and annoyed?"
Colin explained what was going on. Sam nodded and replied, "Good. The D.A. will continue. I wish I had the courage to join last year. Luna asked me if I wanted to join, but I couldn't bring myself to go against Umbridge. I told her that I was not going to, but I wouldn't tell anyone else about the meeting in the Hogs Head. If only I had Luna's courage. She was brave enough to stand up to Umbridge our first class and she got a detention with that horrid blood quill. And I was the only one in our dorm who was actually concerned for Luna ! The others said it served her right!"
Harry flinched when he heard that. Sam continued, "And Luna got another detention in January with that quill! Only that time she went directly to the bathroom instead of going back to the common room. Later she told me that Hermione found her there and that's when they arranged for the truth to be published in The Quibbler."
Harry then remembered what Luna said about the other girls taking her things. "Are you the only one in Ravenclaw that is nice to Luna?"
Sam shook her head. "Padma Patil is nice to Luna. So are Mandy Brocklehurst and Lisa Turpin. Anthony and Terry Boot don't tease her, either, but they mostly ignore her. Cho Chang isn't too bad, either, but her friend Marietta has teased Luna frequently. And I'm the only girl in the dorm that's Luna's friend. But the teasing and taking of Luna's things has stopped somewhat now, since I've threatened detention if it continued and the crumple-horned snorkack has been proven to exist."
"Good," replied Harry. "I don't like it. Luna mentioned it at the end of term and I felt sorry for her. I also sympathised, since my cousin Dudley used to tease me and bully me. It stopped when I went to Hogwarts, though, since he's a bit afraid of magic."
Just then, a boy came over and said, "Sam, we've got to keep patrolling." Sam gave a little jump, told Harry that she'd see him later, and left. That reminded Colin and Courtney of their prefect duties and they also left. Harry made sure the sign was straight, then returned to the common room to work on his Defense essay.
May 2nd, 2005, 4:49 pm
Chapter ten continued
The next day, Harry had Herbology first. The class worked on wolfsbane. Hermione answered most of the questions, but Harry was able to tell Professor Sprout that another name for wolfsbane was monkshod. Ron was able to tell her that wolfsbane was used in the Wolfsbane Potion, which helped a werewolf become a harmless wolf when he transformed.
After Herbology was a free period for Ron, Harry, and Neville, while Hermione had to go to her Arithmacy class. The three boys went to the library to work on their Herbology essay and plan the first D.A. meeting. Finally it was decided that the new members would split up in groups of four or five and one of the old members would work with each group on disarming and some basic hexes. Harry would work with the rest of old members on patronuses.
Since Hermione, Cho, Luna, and Ginny could already produce Patronuses, they would be permanent teachers of a group. The rest would have to take turns teaching so they could get in Patronus practice. When the boys finished the planning, it was lunchtime.
Hermione paid very little attention to the others. She buried her head in her Arithmacy text and read that all through lunch while hurriedly eating. She did look up once to say, "That's nice," when Harry told him about his paln for D.A. meetings. However, Harry suspected that Hermione wasn't really paying attention, so gave up trying to talk with her.
Sean and Fiona handed Harry a dish of raspberry perserves, but remembering the incident yesterday at breakfast, he didn't touch it. However, Seamus, who wasn't suspecting anything, spread some on a slice of bread and began eating. His hair suddenly turned an emerald green. A number of people burst out laughing, including Sean and Fiona.
Finally Fiona gasped out, "Put some of this jam on your bread. Then your hair will turn back to nirmal." Seamus did so and the green disappeared.
Sean explained, "The perserves turn your hair the colors of the house you don't like, or the colors of whatever nationality you are. And since you're Irish, Seamus, your hair turned green."
Harry suspected that if Malfoy ate some of the preserves, his blonde hair would turn red and gold. Fiona said, "Sean and I invented it and sold the idea to Fred and George. They sent us a sample this morning and we decided to test it during lunch."
Seamus was annoyed by the prank, but he forgave Sean and Fiona, seeing as it was a harmless one. Hermione would have told off the twins, but she was so busy reading that she had not paid any attention to what was going on. When everything had settled down, Hermione left, saying she was going to the library.
May 5th, 2005, 3:32 pm
That evening, Harry served his 'detention' with Rhia. She was much more patient than Snape and guided him through Occulemency. He was able to clear his mind after several attempts and throw Rhia out of his mind. His first few attempts, though, weren't very good. Several incidents of his childhood at the Dursleys flitted through his memory. Like his first two lessons with Rhia, her eyes flashed with anger at his treatment and she had muttered angrily.
At nine o'clock Rhia ended the lesson. "You have improved, Harry. When you get to be more proficient, I'll have Severus take you for a lesson. I know you don't always get along with him, but I might end up being too easy on you. He's harder and it will help you be better at Occulemency. Now, if anyone besides your friends ask, tell him or her that you serves detention by scrubbing out cauldrons for me." Then she did a spell so that the hems of Harry's sleeves were wet.
Harry knew that it was only to make his lie look believeable. He thanked Rhia for the lesson and returned to the common room. Seamus asked about his detention, and Harry replied, "I had to scrub out cauldrons for R-Professor Potter. Without magic. But it wasn't too bad. She just ignored me the whole time." Then he did a spell to dry out the hem of his sleeves.
Of course, Ron, Hermione, Ginny, and Neville knew the truth. They wisely didn't say anything, though. Harry yawned and said, "Well, I've got to finish that Potions essay, then I'm heading for bed." Luckily, he only had a couple of paragraphs and a conclusion to write, so it didn't tkae too long. At ten o'clock, he put his finished essay away and went up to bed.
On Saturday evening, he went to the Animagus meeting. To his surprise, Sean and Fiona were there. "What you are you guys doing here? I thought this was open to only fifth years and above."
Sean replied, "Professor McGonagall insisted that we show up. She had a feeling that we might try it on on own if we weren't allowed here."
Fiona added, "And also because we're on sixth-year level in Transfiguration. We can already vanish snails and mice and kittens."
"What!" exclaimed Hermione, very shocked. "First years and you can already do fifth year stuff? Even I couldn't do that!"
Sean shrugged. "We turned a match into a needle on our first try. Then we had to turn a beetle into a button. Did that on our first try, too. Then we moved onto harder things. It took us three trys to turn a teapot into a turtle, but still Professor McGonagall was impressed."
Fiona added, "It took us five trys to turn a desk into a pig, but she was still impressed. And last class she had us vanishing things. It took us six tries, but we managed it. Now Professor McGonagall is having us moved up to sixth year Transfiguration. So we'll be in your class next week."
Ron and Hermione appeared very impressed, and Harry was too. He couldn't believe that in one a week, two first years were able to do stuff fifth years could. Ron remarked, "Well, it looks like you have competition, 'Mione."
Hermione snapped, "Don't call me that, Ron! My name doesn't need to be shortened."
Harry quickly said, "The class is about to start." Hermione shut her mouth, though she still looked slightly disgruntled. Professor McGonagall clapped her hands and began describing Animagi and the whole process of turning into an animal. Then she, Professor Dumbledore, Snape, and Rhia demonstrated their animagus forms. Professor McGonagall was a cat, of course. Rhia was a very beautiful looking hawk, Snape was a bat, and to Harry's surprise, Dumbledore was bumblebee.
"Why would Dumbledore's form be a bee?" whispered Harry. 'I thought it would be something like a phoenix."
Hermione hissed, "The name 'Dumbledore' means bumblebee, Harry. And he's also the type of person that goes around humming to himself, as well as busy."
That's when he remembered reading that Dumbledore liked chamber music. Harry knew that Hermione was right, the headmaster would likely be the type to hum. And he was at times 'as busy as a bee". Rhia interrupted his thoughts. "All of you, will line up in groups of six. One of us will go to each group and do a spell that will reveal what your animagus will be."
Harry, Hermione, Ron, Luna, Ginny, and Neville lined up togetehr. Rhia came over to them. "Are you ready?" she asked. At their nods, she pulled out her wand and gestured to Hermione. She stepped forward. Rhia muttered something Harry couldn't quite ctach and suddenly an image of an frisking otter appeared.
"That's the same as my patronus!" exclaimed Hermione. Rhia smiled at her, then gestured to Luna. Luna's form turned out to be a luna moth. Next was Neville. His form turned out to be a gorilla. He was very surpised, until Rhia explained, "Gorillas are very peaceful creatures unless provoked or in defense. And you, Neville, don't fight unless otherwise provoked or in self-defense."
Ron was next and his form turned out to be a lion. Ginny was after him and her form was a panther. Finally it was Harry's turn. His form turned out to be a phoenix. Rhia raised her brow. "Prehaps that is partly why you survived the Dark Lord as a baby. Your mother's protection certainly helped, but being a phoenx would also help. After all, they don't exactly die. Not the way other creatures do."
Harry was pleased with his form and Ron gave him a slighty jealous look. However, Ron wasn't that jealous, since he did like his lion form. Just then there was a commotion from Malfoy. Snape had taken his group, but Malfoy refused to let Snape reveal his form. Professor McGonagall came over. "Enough, Mr. Malfoy! Ten points from Slytherin." Then she raised her wand and revealed his form. Everyone was watching, due to the disturbance he had caused, so they saw that his form was a ferret.
At that, everyone, except for a few Slytherins like Pansy, laughed. Malfoy was furious. "I am a ferret? I, who descends from the brave house of Malfoy and the noble house of Black! Well, if that's the case, I quit! I was already thinking about it when I saw that traitor Snape was going to help teach this class." He stormed angrily off, gesturing for Crabbe and Goyle to follow him. Pansy went after him, too, declaring that she would also quit.
Finally things settled down and everyone had found out their Animagus forms. Books were passed out to each student on how to become Animagi. They were told to read the first two chapters and next lesson they would practise what they read. Harry grinned, excited about all this. He and his friends returned to the Gryffindor common room, except Luna, who went to the Ravenclaw one.
May 9th, 2005, 4:41 pm
Chapter 11 continued
On Monday, Harry was surprised to see Fiona and Sean in his Potions class. "What are you guys doing here? You didn't get moved to sixth-year Potions like you did for Transfiguration?"
Sean and Fiona exchanged looks, then nodded. "Not to brag or anything," said Fiona, "but Professor Potter couldn't help but be impressed with our Potions work. It didn't take us very long to make that simple potion for curing boils. So she moved us to something harder. When we did that easily, she assigned us a even harder potion."
Sean continued, "And finally, last class she had us make a fifth year potion. A strengthening potion or something. When we did that without too much difficulty, she moved us to the Polyjuice Potion. Then she spoke with Professor Dumbledore, who suggested moving us up to sixth year."
Harry raised his brow and turned to see extrememly impressed looks on Hermione's, Ron's, and Neville's faces. Rhia strode to the front of the room and snapped, "Excuse me, but class will begin. We have two new members, Sean and Fiona O'Mailey. They are first years, but Professor Dumbledore had them moved to our sixth-year class simply because they are very advanced and can already do fifth year potions without too much difficulty. Please take out your cauldrons and continue with your Polyjuice Potions." She waved her wand and the day's instructions appeared on the board.
After half an hour of work, Harry heard Hermione exclaim, "But you're supposed to add-"
Sean interrupted her. "Did you read the directions carefully? Bloomslang skin is not to be added at this stage. It's too early."
Hermione looked at the board, then turned red. Fiona said, "It's all right, Hermione. There are times when we don't read things carefully." Unfortunately, it didn't seem to make Hermione feel any better. She had made a Polyjuice Potion in second year, and she was the best potion maker, so she was embarressed by her mistake.
Ron looked shocked. "I can't believe a first year is actually better than Hermione! I can accept the fact that I'm better than her in chess and that you're better than her in flying, Harry. After all, she can't excell at everything. But this is unbelievable!"
Harry had to agree. He had always thought that Hermione would be the best in schoolwork and could help him and Ron out with homework. But now here were two first years who seemed to be better than Hermione. Harry didn't know quite what to say and had to quickly return his attention to his potion before he messed up.
When class ended, a very disgruntled Hermione walked out of the room. Fiona put a comforting arm around her. "Do na be so unhappy, Hermione. Sean and I are no' trying to show you up. You are brillant and you'll best us at something."
Sean nodded. "Sure and she's right. You'll probably be better than us in Transfiguration. Just 'cause we're in your class, doesna mean we'll do somethin' right off the bat."
Hermione sighed. 'You are perfectly right. I'm not mad at you or anything, I'm just a bit put out that I'm the best in Potions."
In Transfiguration, the class worked on Animagus lessons. They discussed what they had read in their text and practiced what they had read. Hermione was the first to sprout an otter's whiskers, which restored her to good humor. Sean and Fiona were the next to manage a small transformation. Their Animagi forms were frisky and fun loving dogs with reddish-brown hair. Sean produced the beginnings of a wagging tail, while Fiona's nose became dog-like. Nobody else in the class managed anything, except Harry, who managed to get a feather or two.
When class ended, everyone went to lunch. Sean said, "See, Hermione? You're better at Animagus transformation than us. You got something before we did."
Fiona added, "You'll probably be first to master the complete transformation. Or one of the first. There's other classes, after all."
Hermione was smiling and Harry was relieved that things were back to normal for the moment.
May 10th, 2005, 8:24 pm
Okay, Fred and George, as well as Sean and Fiona, have threatened to hex me into oblivion if I don't update today. So here is my update.
Chapter 11 continued
Sean and Fiona showed up again in Defense Against Dark Arts, so Harry assumed that they had been moved to sixth-year Defense also. Snape had everyone pair up and practise dueling. Everyone could use any spell they wanted, short of Unforgiveables and those bordering on Dark Magic. The twins surprisingly didn't pair each other. Fiona said she wanted to be Harry, while Sean took Neville.
Very quickly, Harry wondered if it was a bad idea. Fiona was extremely skilled and kept him on his toes. She shot spells at him and he had to quickly use the Shield Charm or dodge it. He did get in a few spells himself, but Fiona, being smaller and more agile than him, easily dodged the spells or used a shied. Harry couldn't help being impressed with Fiona's work.
Finally Harry called a brief time out. He looked at Sean and Neville and saw that they were on par with each other. Sean did get in a Cheering Charm and disarmed Neville once, but on the whole, they were equals. Since Neville had improved immensely in Defense and was almost as good as Harry, Sean's work was impressive. Harry knew right off that Sean and Fiona deserved to be in sixth year.
When class was over, Harry wondered if Sean and Fiona would be in all his classes. He asked them. Fiona replied, "Nay. We're not. We'll be in your Charms class, but that's it."
Sean added, "We're in fifth year Herbology, Astronomy, and History of Magic, though."
"So you're not up to sixth year level in those classes," mused Hermione.
Sean exclaimed, "That's not true! Not to brag, but we could have been in sixth year Herbology. We just thought having four N.E.W.T.-level classes would be enough."
Fiona added, "And sixth year History and Astronomy is boring and we don't need it. But we do need to take O.W.L.s in those, so we decided fifth year would be fine."
Ron said, "Then that means you'll be in Ginny's classes for those. I wonder how she'll react to that."
Harry shrugged, not knowing how Ginny would react. Hermione had Ancient Runes, so she hurried off to her class while the others returned to the common room. Harry found a frustrated Ginny, trying to do her homework and complaining about it being fifth year.
Fiona came over. "D'you need any help, Ginny? I'm no' bad at writin' essays."
Ginny accepted Fiona's help and Harry wondered why at times the twins would speak normal English and at other speak in a Scottish or Irish brogue. Prehaps they spoke normal English for the other srudents, who were familar with it, but would sometimes forget and lapse into the accents. He din't ponder over the question long, as Ron said, 'We need to get started on our homework." SInce Ron was dating Hermione, it was no surprise to Harry that his friend was taking more of an interest in homework.
So harry sat down, dug out his Potions book, a quill, and a roll of parchment, and began writing his Potions essay.
May 11th, 2005, 3:55 pm
On Tuesday was the first D.A. meeting. All the old members who hadn't graduated showed up, as well as at least sixty others. Harry led them all into the Room of Requirement.
"Good evening, everyone," he said. "Welcome back to our 9old members and greetings to our new ones. This club is for me to help you with Defense, so that when Voldmeort attacks, you will be ready. And I notice most of you flinch. if have trouble with the name, then please say Tom Marvolo Riddle. He told me himself that it was his name at Hogwarts and he rearranged his name to spell 'I am Lord Voldemort.'"
There were numerous gasps from the other students who hadn't known of this. Harry continued, "Riddle is not pureblood, as you may have been led to think. He is actually half-blood. His mother, a witch, fell in love with a Muggle. When he found out that his wife was a witch, he divorced her. She died giving birth to Riddle and he grew up in a Muggle orphanage until he got his Hogwarts letter. After he graduated, something happened to him and he ended up hating Muggles and those that aren't pureblood."
The members started murmuring to each other, much startled by what Harry had told them. "Okay, that is enough. I have told you all that you need to know about Riddle. We shall began work. All of you new members can group yourselves by ten people. Hermione, Ron, Cho, Ernie, Luna, Ginny, and Anthony will each lead a group and work on disarming and small hexes and jinxes. Sean and Fiona, could you please come here?"
The twins came over and Harry said, "You won't need to join the other members, since you've already demonstrated during Defense class that you are capable of fighting. So you can join the old members in Patronuses."
Sean grinned and said, "Oh, that shouldn't be too difficult for us."
Fiona added, "We've been practising it over the summer."
Harry was really surprised. "You have? But how-"
"We know about it," interrupted Fiona. "We can read, y'know."
"And when we got our wands, we started practicing," finished Sean.
A boy, who had auburn hair and blue-green eyes like the twins, came over. "Is that what you two scamps were doing in your room?"
Sean nodded and Harry turned to the boy. The boy saw him. "Oh, sorry. Me name's Brain. I'm their older and more mature brother. I'm in Ravenclaw and in fifth year. It's a pleasure to meet you, Harry."
Harry smiled. "The same to you. It was a surprise when the twins told me that my mum and theirs were friends."
Brian smiled. "I can imagine. Well, I've got to get back to my group."
Harry turned his attention back to Sean and Fiona. "Well, if you've been practicing the Patronus Charm, please demonstrate for me."
Sean and Fiona raised their wands and said at the same time, "Expecto patronum!" Silvery light shot out of their wands and formed into two shaky, but distinct monkeys.
"That's our patronus," declared Sean. "They're monkeys-"
"'Cause we like to monkey around," finished Fiona. Harry laughed, even though the pun hadn't been that funny.
"Impressive work, guys. Two first years can pull off something that supposed to be N.E.W.T.-level. I was in third year when I did mine. Of course, I learned it then, but I don't think I oculd have pulled it off my first year." He then turned to old members that weren't leading a group and told them ot work on Patronuses. He left Sean and Fioan to supervise and he walked around the room checking on things.
He spotted Daphne Greengrass and Blasie Zabini working in a group lead by Hermione. The two were partners and worked very well. When they saw Harry, they stopped long enough to wave and grin at him. Harry waved back and continued with his inspection. That's when he realized that Marietta hadn't shown up. Probably she thought she wouldn't be welcomed back after her betraying the D.A.
He made a note to tell Cho that her friend was welcome to come back if she apoligised. At ten minutes to nine, Harry ended the meeting. "Splendid work, guys. Meet here next week on Wednesday at six thirty. Next meeting, we'll have some idea of when the Quidditch practises will be, so the meetings will be scheduled when the Slytherins have practise. The few Slytherin members we have here aren't part of the team, so it'll work out."
The members all nodded and filed out. Harry pulled Cho aside. 'Um, tell your friend Mrietta that she's welcome to come back. Just have her apoligise to me first. I'm not really holding what she did against her. it was a tough time, and she was under pressure form her parents. But I would appreciate if she's a little more careful in the meantime. She could have gotten you in trouble."
Cho sighed. "Thanks, Harry. I'll tell her. Un, would you like to try again? We didn't get along very well last year, but I had Cedric's death to deal with."
Harry shook his head. "Sorry, Cho, but I only like you as a friend now. I don't have a crush on you or anything anymore. And anyway, I'm dating Luna."
Cho was very suprised. "Luna Lovegood? The one almost everybody calls 'Loony'? That's a suprise. Well, if you can deal with her and are happy with her, I won't question it." She shrugged and left the room. Harry picked up his wand and he left the Room of Requirement also.
May 18th, 2005, 7:27 pm
Chapter 12 continued
Next week, Harry and Ron held Quidditch tryouts. Harry had his seeker spot back and Ron was keeper. Katie Bell was the remaining chaser left, Alicia and Angelina having graduated. The only reason she asn't captain was because she didn't want the responsiblity and it was her N.E.W.T. year. Ginny would likely end up being the second chaser, but she still had to try out as a formality. Andrew Kirke and Jack Sloper were the beaters that had replaced Fred and George, but they had said they only wanted to reserves if replacements could be found for them.
First years were now allowed to try out, but they could only be offered reserves spots unless they were the best cantidates. Sean, Fiona, and the Creevy brothers tried out for the beater spots. Courtney, Ginny, and a third year named Natalie McDonald were trying out for the open chaser positions. Second year Euan Abercrombie was trying out for reserve keeper.
Ginny went first and out of her ten shots at goal, eight of them got past Ron. Courtney went next and seven of her attempts scored. Natalie made six, but it looked as if she could have made a seventh if Ron hadn't somehow managed to make a complicated dive and kick it. Harry and Ron greed that Ginny would be chaser, but they still were unsure whether to pick Courtney or Natalie. They gave and focused on the beater tryouts.
After a few minutes, it was clear that Sean and Fiona were as good as Fred and George. They flew excellently, and each having a Nimbus 2002 seemed to help. They were quite skilled in using the bats to hit the bludgers where they wanted. Harry was very impressed, since their size seemed to be alittle more suitable for chaser or seeker. Colin and Dennis took their turn and they weren't as spectacular. They were definitely enthusastic, and hit the bludgers with much energy. But the bludgers didn't always go where they wanted, and sometimes they would miss. They were an improvement over Jack and Andrew, but they weren't great.
Euan then took his turn as keeper. He wasn't Ron when Ron was in top form, but he wasn't bad, either. He did block two thirds of the attempts Ginny and Courtney were sending at him, and a little over half of Katie's attempt. It was quite obvious that Euan would have to be reserve keeper. When tryouts were over, Jack and Andrew stood up and announed that they had decided to leave the team. It was obvious to them that they could be replaced, and the ones that didn't make it could be reserves.
Harry nodded. "That is fine with us, Jack and Andrew." The two left and Harry said, "Ron, could you take over for a few minutes? I need to see McGonagall."
He flew over to the castle and quickly found McGonagall in her office. "I have found the perfect beaters! Fiona and Sean O'Mailey. They're as good as Fred and George. But they're first years. I need you to see if an exception can be made for them."
Profesor McGonagall nodded briskly. "I'm sure Dumbledore will let them, Potter. Now, take me to the pitch. I need to check out Mr. and Miss O'Mailey out for myself."
The two went out to the pitch and Sean and Fiona flew up again, demonstrating their beater expertise. "Excellent flying," commented McGonagall. 'You were right to say that they were as good as Fred and George Weasley. As far as I'm concerned, they can be on the team. I'll speak with the Dumbledore. Is there anything that these twins don't excel at?"
Harry knew that last bit was a rhetorical question, but he had wondering something similar. As McGonagall returned to the castle, Sean and Fiona landed. Ron had quick discussion with Harry and they decided that Courtney would be the third chaser and Natalie would be a reserve.
Ron then said loudly, "Harry and I have made our decisions. Seeker is Harry Potter, and myself as keeper. We are both co-captains, too. Chasers are Katie Bell, Ginny Weasley, and Courtney Ross. Beaters are Sean and Fiona O'Mailey. Reserve chaser is Natalie McDonald. It was a close call between you and Courtney, by the way. Reserve beaters are Colin and Dennis Creevy. Reserve keeper is Euan Abercrombie. And finally, in addition to being chaser, Ginny Weasley is also the reserve seeker."
Natalie, Colin, and Dennis looked disappointed on not having made it onto permanent spots on the team. Katie cleared her throat. "You know, I'll be graduating at the end of the year. So next year, you'll definitely be on the team, Natalie."
Natalie cheered up a bit at that, but Colin and Dennis still looked disappointed. "We won't ever be full members," said Dennis. "Fiona and Sean are younger than us."
Colin then said, "Well, at least we're reserves. We'll still have to attend practices, Dennis. And we will play in case something happens to Fiona and Sean."
Dennis looked a little more cheerful after that. The group picked up their brooms and began heading back inside the castle. Harry and Ron announced the results of the tryouts and soon the new teammates were swamped with congratulations, the first years were especially proud of Sean and Fiona for having made the team.
May 19th, 2005, 6:26 pm
Okay, Fred and George have threatened to hex me if I didn't update and my friend and beta Luna25 told me that she'd stop beta-ing. So here's my update.
There was a Hogsmeade weekend that week. Harry asked Luna to go with him and she agreed. Ron was going with Hermione and Ginny with Neville. The six decided to meet at The Threebroomsticks at twelve for lunch. When they entered the village, Harry saw a sign announcing: Grand opening of Weasley and Zonko's Joke Shop. In smaller letters below, it read "Zonko's and Weasley Wizard Wheezes have merged in Hogsmeade."
"Wow!" exclaimed Harry. "So Fred and George and Zonko's decided to merge together."
"In Hogsmeade anyway," pointed out Luna. "They haven't merged in Diagon Alley."
Harry nodded and the two of them decided to check out the combined store. Their other friends had also saw the sign, so Harry wasn't surprised to see them also go to Weasley and Zonko's Joke Shop. Inside, the store was basically the same as Zonko's Joke Shop, excpet that it now had the Weasley twins' joke products. Fred and George were talking with the manager of Zonko's Joke shop. When they saw Harry and his friends, they ended the conversation and came over.
"What do you think?" asked Fred. "Zonko's Joke Shop was very impressed with our products. So we signed a contract with them."
George added, "And so our two stores are merged in Hogsmeade. Hogwarts students can get our products during the school year without having to use mail-order, and they can also get Zonko's products, too."
Harry grinned. "That's great guys. Sean and Fiona will be pleased."
Fred raised a brow. "Those two twins that have thte same birthday as us and are on their way to becoming the next Hogwarts troublemakers?"
At Ron's nod, George said, "They're neat. And they came up with some good joke stuff. They wrote about how their butter and jam thing came out, Harry."
Harry remembered the incident and he turned a bit red, though he did laugh, as it was funny now. Hermione asked, "So who's taking care of your store in Diagon Alley?"
Fred looked at her. "Lee Jordan is. He's doing a great job of it, too."
George added, "And he's going to be reassigned here when everything's settled. Fred and I will run the store in Diagon Alley. Lee'll be helping Zonko's out right here."
The Zonko's manager came over to them. "Do you wish to purchase anything? In honor of the grand opening, everything here, Zonko and Weasley products, are all twenty to fifty percent off."
Fred whispered in his ear and the manger said, "Excuse me, all Zonko's products are twenty to fifty percent off. All Weasley products are free for you six, since you happen to be friends or family of the creators of those products."
Harry and his friends grinned and they began browsing throught he shop. Finally Harry got two Skivving Snackboxes, a small case of Wildfire Whizbangs, and a leaking ink bottle that had been marked down from one galleon to twelve sickles. Luna bought a fake wand and a Skivving Snackbox. When the two were down with their purchases, they bid Fred and George good-bye and headed to Honeydukes.
There, Harry bought Luna a box of chocolates and a bag of Fizzing Whizbees and Bertie Bott's Every Flavour Beans for himself. Then they went outside, nibbling on their sweets. The rwo shared the Choclate and Every Flavor beans.
"Mum loved these," commented Luna. "She wanted to invent a flavour, but wasn't able to. Once she said to me, 'I've got it! An ink-flavoured one!' But then next day, Mum and I came across a black one that turned out to be ink-flavored."
Harry laughed. "It is too bad your mum never invented a new flavour."
Luna shrugged and smiled serenely. "It doesn't really matter. Though it would have been nice if she did. If she had spent time developing new Every Flavour Bean flavors, maybe she'd still be alive today. But she had to go study the Veiled Archway and try to invent a cure for werewolves."
Harry glanced at her. "Is that how your mum died?"
Luna nodded. "She was making a potion that might cure werewolves, not just make them tame like the Wolfsbane Potion does. It exploded and injured her. She just bandaged the cut and then turned to work on a potion that would allow her to enter the veil and return, or at least allow her to converse with the voices there. Daddy and I had come running at the first explosion to make sure she was all right. A few minutes later, that potion went wrong. Mum tried using her wand to make some sort of complicated spell to set things right. The spell went awry and ended up killing her."
Her voice trembled a bit, but her expression was as serene and matter-of-fact as when she had first told Harry that her mother was dead. Harry replied softly, "That must have been terrible for you."
Luna nodded. "It was the only time I have cried since I was baby and when I fell out of a tree at five and sprained my ankle and cut myself on the arm. After that, I calmed myself for Daddy's sake. He was ever so distraught over Mum's death. I took over the housework and got Daddy to pull himself together and work on The Quibbler."
Harry couldn't help admiring Luna for being so brave and strong in the face of her mother's death. In some respects, she was very much like a Gryffindor. And prehaps her dreamy exterior was something she came up with due to her mother's death. At the moment, Luna said, "It's almost twelve. we'd better meet the others."
Harry gave a little start and then followed Luna to The Three Broomsticks. Ron and Hermione arrived just as they did, and Ginny and Neville showed up a minute later. the six ordered lunch and they all had butterbeer, except Luna, who had a gillywater and onion. The six of them talked about what they had done and bought. Halfway through, Fred and George showed up. They joined the six to talk for a few minutes and tell them about their new branch. Then they went to a separate table to order some lunch for themselves.
Harry and his friends soon finished lunch after that. The six gathered their purchases, paid for the lunch, and then headed back to the castle. Harry reflected over the nice time he had and knew that Luna was a much better girlfriend than Cho Chang had been.
May 24th, 2005, 2:34 pm
Chapter 13 continued
Harry was assigned a 'detention' Monday, so that evening, he went down to Rhia's office. He was about to enter when he heard voices. So he paused and heard Snape say, "How is...werewolves coming...?" Then he heard Rhia reply, "Fine...Prince Felix...helping...Remus...it"
Harry grew very curious. As he couldn't hear everything with his ear pressed against the door, he fished in his pockets and extracted a Extendable Ear. Then he slipped it under the door and heard Rhia say, "A number of werewolves are on the Order's side. That is to say, they don't support the Dark Lord. He's not very accepting of 'halfbreeds.' But they aren't eager about siding with the Ministry, even if Amelia Bones did overturn that law Umbridge made that makes it almost impossible for werewolves to get jobs."
Snape answered, "But they know the Order isn't the Ministry. We don't think like them. The only reason I don't like Lupin that much was because of school, not because he's a werewolf. And Amelia Bones is trying to make things better for goblins and werewolves and the like. So things are getting better."
Rhia gave a sniff. "But it's not going to make up for centuries of dislike of them. Even the goblins are hesitant about siding with the Order, despite the fact the Dark Lord attacked them during the first war in hopes of controlling Gringotts. They know Dumbledore is fair, and Bill has been talking with them. Yet most of them still don't want to side with the Order."
Snape snapped, "They should! Right now all they're saying is that if the Dark Lord attacks, they'll fight back. And they will go as far to help the Order members if they are nearby and its obvious the members need the help. But they're not real allies."
"Prince Felix Felicis should be able to help," remarked Rhia. "He is part Muggle, on his mother's side of the family. And he also has some goblin blood. Though he's not as short as Filius Flitwick. And Felix is a third cousin twice removed to Remus, as well as second cousin to that vampire Order member. You could say that he's a half-blood prince, since his maternal grandmother was a Muggle and descends from a royal family."
"I know that," replied Snape. "But what royal family is he from exactly?"
Rhia said, "I believe the Russian one. The one that got overthrown during the Russian Revolution. You know the story about how the last Grand Duchess, Anastasia, escaped? Apparently it is true, since Prince Felix Felicis descends from that family."
At that point, Harry gave a tug and the Extendable Ear returned to him. He then quickly ran to the end of the hall and turned the corner, since it was possible that Rhia and Snape had heard the crack of it returning. After a few minutes, Harry had caught his breath and he put the Ear back in his pocket. Then he calmly walked down the hall and kncoked on Rhia's door.
Snape opened and snapped, "What are you doing here, Potter?"
Rhia came up and said, "it's all right, Severus. I told him to report here tonight for detention. Or rather an Occulemency lesson."
Snape nodded. "I see. So the others students think he's really here to detention. Well, come in, Potter. I'll be going now. We can resume our conversation later."
Once Snape had gone and the door was shut, Rhia gave Harry an amused look. "Did you enjoy our enlightened conversation, Harry?"
Harry gaped, since he hadn't expected to hear this from Rhia. "How-I thought-"
Rhia laughed. "Oh come, now. Did you really expect me to not know you were eavesdropping? I saw that Extendable Ear for one thing. And I could sense you were there from my ability with Legimency. And I heard the crack of the Ear returning to you. Severus didn't know you were listening in, and I didn't tell him. He would have been most annoyd at you and would have tried to take off points for it. He did hear the crack, but I told him it was probably a house elf that came in to tidy up."
Harry turned red, but was relieved that Rhia wasn't annoyed at him. "Sorry, Rh-Professor Potter. I heard voices, got curious, and decided to listen in."
"So I take it you know about Prince Felix Felicis and that the Order is trying to get the werewolves and goblins on our side. And we're trying to get vampires on our side too. And recruit a few giants, besides Hagrid's half-brother. I know most have sided with the Dark Lord, but there are a few who aren't really on his side."
"That's great!" replied Harry. "We need more allies."
Rhia smiled. "And you'll meet Felix in the next chapter, I mean next week. He plans to drop by. He's a distant cousin of Professor Flitwick, so it's a good excuse for him to visit. He wants to meet you and your friends. And now, it's time to begin our lesson."
So the Occulemency lesson began. Harry had been clearing his mind most nights before he went to bed, so he did fairly well. Rhia was impressed with his improvement and awarded him with a bar of Honeydukes best chocolate at the end of the lesson. Harry ate the chocolate and then hurried back to the common room, as he had an essay to write. Ron, Hermione, Ginny, and Neville were waiting for him. He told him about Prince Felix Felicis and then got started on his Herbology essay.
May 31st, 2005, 8:43 pm
Chapter 14: Felix Felicis
Next Tuesday, at lunchtime, Harry saw a man sitting up at the staff table. The man looked in his late thirties or early forties. He had coal-black hair and silver threads in it. His eyes were a brillant cobalt blue and he had a strong and handsome nose, a stubborn chin, and a nice smile. He was dressed simply in robes of dark blue trimmed with crimson at the hem and dark green at the sleeves. He was shorter than Dumbledore, who was on his right, but he was taller than Flitwick, who was on his left. Harry guessed that the man would probably be his height, or maybe a couple of centimetres taller.
Hermione looked at the strange man. "I wonder who he is. And he certainly is handsome."
Ron's eyes narrowed and he gave a cough that sounded suspiciously like Lockhart. Hermione turned to him. "Don't worry, Ron. I don't have a crush on him or anything. I love you and only you in that way."
Ron was appeased and kissed Hermoine on the cheek. Neville said thoughtfully, "Do you think he could be Prince Felix Felicis? You told us that he was going to visit Hogwarts this week, Harry."
Harry gave a start and replied, "I guess he is Prince Felix."
The strange man whispered to Dumbledore and Flitwick, then got up. he smoothed his dark blue robes and headed for the Gryffindor table. Harry was excited as the man sat down between Harry and Neville. "Good afternoon," he said in a quiet, strong, and yet gentle voice. "I am Felix Felicis. I have been informed that you know about me."
The others nodded and Felix continued, "You are Harry Potter, of course. I'm afraid that you've heard this often, but I must say that you look so much like your father. And that your eyes are like Lily's. They were two years below me. And you must be Ronald and Ginny Weasley. You have the Weasley hair. I remember your parents, too. Arthur was three years above me and the same for Molly. And you are Hermione Granger. Minerva and Albus have told me about you. The cleverest witch in your year, I've heard. And last but not least, Neville Longbottom. Frank was in my year, Neville. We were good friends. Not best friends, mind, but close all the same. I had a crush on Alice once. Or I thought I did. Then one day, Frank told me that he had feelings for her and I suddenly realised that I only liked her for a friend and that Alice would be better for him."
Luna drifted over and Felix looked up. "And I take it you are Luna Lovegood? You look awfully like your mother. She was in the year below me and very sweet and nice. I was friends with her. She didn't have many friends, since people thought her weird or too off-in-her-own-worldish. And your father was in my year. There were people who thought him crazy, because he believed in things like crumple-horned snorkacks. I didn't though. Frank and I accepted him and was friends with him. And I introduced him to your mother, Luna. They got off splendidly and she got engaged to him during her sixth year. She had to wait two years to marry though, since she had to graduate first."
Luna smiled. "Come to think of it, I do recall dad mentioning an old school friend of his named Felix. He said that you went on your way fighting dark arts and occasionally notifying Newt Scamander if you happened to run across a new magical being or beast. He also added that the two of you lost touch three years after I was born."
Felix smiled at Luna. "True. I just got busy and everything. Though I did attend your mother's funeral. One of your father's letter did finally reach me. The one notifying me of Ariane's death. You probably won't remember, since you were so heartbroken. That was the only time you cried since you were a baby, your father said. And I didn't stay long. After the funeral, I comforted your father for a few minutes, made myself a sandwich, kissed you good-bye, and then left."
Luna nodded. "I do remember someone kissing me and telling Daddy good-bye. But I was too busy being sad to take notice of you."
Felix patted her. "And I was too sad and shocked to stay very long." He then looked across the table and asked, "Who are those two? They appear to be twins. And they seem familar. Those eyes look like Rosalynn McIntyre's. And their hair is red like hers. Or like Patrick O'Mailey's. Ros married him."
The O'Mailey twins looked up and Sean said, "I'm Sean O'Mailey. This is my sis Fiona."
Fiona added, "Sure and our ma is being Rosalynn McIntyre."
Prince Felix nodded. "I thought so! Rosalynn was in Lily Potter's year. I believe they called themselves the Princesses or something. Like a female version of the Marauders, except they weren't really into playing pranks and were more serious. I'm Felix Felicis. I was two years above your mother. And your father, Patrick, was in my year. Though he was best friends with Frank Longbottom. But he was good friends with me and one of the few people who didn't think John Lovegood weird, or least didn't tease him."
Sean exclaimed, "I though you looked familar! Da told me about you. And he showed pictures from his school days. And you visited us when Fiona and I were four."
Fiona nodded. "We remember the visit. But not you very well. Brian is better at that, since he was seven or eight when you visited."
Felix smiled. "I'll have to visit with him. In fact, Luna, why don't you take me to the ravenclaw table now? You're fifth year like him and can introduce me."
After classes, Felix stopped by the Gryffindor common room. Ron had challenged Sean to a chess game and was winning. Ron was a rook, a knight, and two pawns ahead and was pleased that there as something he could best Sean at. Harry was playing Fiona and found that while she was better than him, she didn't seem to have Ron's level of skill. Felix sat down and watched the two games. Finally Ron checkmated Sean with a rook and a bishop.(The king was in a corner square and couldn't move out without being checked by the bishop or knight.)
Felix nodded and said, "You're a great chess player, Ron. Fiona, you can checkmate Harry in one move. Why aren't you doing so?"
Fiona replied, "To prolong Harry's suffering. Just 'cause he's famous isn't going to excuse him from a quick 'death.' I'll take all his pieces before I checkmate the king."
Ten moves later, all the pieces had been taken and then Fiona, in two moves, checkmated the king in a manner similar to Ron's. Only she used a queen and knight. Ron immediately challenged Fiona to a game. Fiona fought valintly, but she eventually lost. Harry sighed and realized that there had to be something that the twins had to not be excellent at. Apparently chess was it. Fiona looked annoyed at loosing and began singing,"This is the song that never ends, yes it goes on and on my friends...." Sean joined her and Harry quickly clapped his hands over his ears. He wasn't a good judge of singing voices, but Sean was terrible. Fiona singing was okay, but Sean was out-of-tune and sounded like a cat in a dark alley. Singing was something Sean wasn't good at.
The others in the common room winced and Hermione snapped, "If you don't stop singing now, I'll take off ten points each and give you both detention!"
The two stopped and Ron protested, "But prefects can't take-"
Hermione sighed and replied, "Honestly,Ron. If you've read the book of regulations and rules for prefects, you'd know that prefects can dock points. Didn't Percy take points off second year?"
Harry recalled the incident and from the look on Ron' face, he did too. Prince Felix laughed and said, "Well, now that the singing has stopped, I would like to tell you guys something. A majority of the werewolves have agreed to side with the good side, not Voldemort's side. So have two gaints besides the one you know about. The goblins and vampires are still reluctant, though. And the merpeople and centuars don't support Voldemort, but they are not quite ready to ally themsleves with humans. The only centaurs and merpeople supporting Dumbledore are Frienze and the ones in the lake."
Ginny's mouth fell open. "But why won't they? They know the Or-I mean group against Voldemort, isn't the Ministry." Harry knew why Ginny had corrected herself. Sean and Fiona didn't know about the Order.
Felix sighed. "They're not ready to ally themselves with wizards, since they haven't been exactly treated as equals. That's why. Now I must go. I need to speak some more with Filius and Albus. But I'll see you guys tomorrow morning before I leave." Felix got up and left the common room.
June 2nd, 2005, 2:45 pm
Chapter 14 continued
The next morning, Felix sat with Harry and his friends at breakfast. He introduced himself to some of the other Gryffindors, like Colin, Den, Seamus, Parvati, Lavender, and Courtney. Dean asked, "Why are you here, sir?"
Prince Felix replied, "Oh, I came here to see Dumbledore and visit Filius Flitwick. Filius hppens to be a cousin of mine, Dean. A third cousin twice removed, to be exact. By the way, Dean, I knew your father. He was in the year above me in school."
Dean looked at him questioningly. "Are you saying that I'm not Muggleborn? That my father was a wizard? I mean, yes, I have a stepfather. Mum told me that my real dad disappeared. And she did wonder if he was wizard when I got my letter. But-"
Prince Felix interrupted, "Yes, he was a wizard. Let me explain. I was friendly with him, but we weren't close friends, since we weren't in the same year. When he graduated, he met your mother, a Muggle and married her. Apparently to protect her from Voldemort, he never revealed that he was wizard. I'm not sure after that, but I assume he left when you were a baby for your protection. The last bit of news I've heard about him was that he died. Your mother eventually married again and so you have a stepfather."
Dean was shocked. "I never-so my mum's suspicions were right! I'll have to write her." He dug in his bag for some parchment and began writing a letter.
Harry was also very shocked by this revelation. He had always assumed that Dean was Muggleborn. After all, Dean had been brought up as a Muggle and he had a psoter of the West Ham football team hanging in their dorm. But now it turned out that Dean lived with his mother and stepfather and his real father was a wizard. Harry turned to Felix, wondering if he'd impart any more startling news.
Prince Felix saw Harry looking at him. "Well, this is a surprise. I never expected that Dean didn't know about his real father. I thought his mother would have known and told him when he got his Hogwarts letter, if not earlier."
A few minutes later, Dean rushed out of the Great Hall to the Owlery so he could deliver the letter. Harry suddenly realised that none of the boys in his dorm room were Muggleborn. They were all at least halfblood. Prince Felix interrupted his thoughts to say, "I'm afraid I must leave now. But I will be back next month to visit Filius again, so you'll likely see me again. It as a pleasure to meet you all. I must say good-bye to Luna, then Filius and Albus. After that, I'll be leaving. Good-bye to you all."
Harry and his friends bid Prince Felix good-bye. Then he got up and headed for the Ravenclaw table. Harry saw him bid Luna and Sam good-bye, then head for the staff table. Professor Flitwick gave Prince Felix a hug and Dumbledore and Snpae shook his hand. As Prince Felix was leaving the hall, Dean returned. He stopped long enough to tell Dean he was leaving and bid him good-bye. A minute later, he was gone from view.
Dean sat down and remarked to Harry, "I like Mr. Felicis. He's really nice. And he confirmed that my dad was a wizard. Mum did wonder when I got my letter."
Harry nodded and Hermione said, "That is very pleasant news, Dean. Now, you'd better finish breakfast. We'll have classes soon." Harry, who had finished, jumped up and ran upstairs to get his schoolbag. A few minutes later, he headed for Potions class with his friends.
June 9th, 2005, 5:11 pm
Halloween soon arrived. That evening, there was a splendid feast. Prince Felix came again for a visit and he was dressed in a costume that entailed a flowing robe and a bow with a uiver full of arrows. Several people looked at him oddly as he sat down next to Harry.
"Happy Halloween, everyone. You know, in America, Muggle children dress up in costumes on Halloween and go out trick-or-treating. That's when they go to houses, yell, 'Trick-or-treat!', and then get sweets. I thought it a very nice custom. Some adults dress up too, so in honor of them, I decided to put on a costume. I'm dressed as an elf. The one in the Lord of the Rings Trilogy by the Squib author, J.R.R. Tolkein."
Hermione had read the trilogy and asked. "You mean Legolas? The one who agreed to be part of the Fellowship and help Frodo on his quest to destroy the Ring?"
Prince Felix nodded. "Yes, I'm Legolas, Hermione. I suppose I'm handsome enough to be an elf. Though I doubt Legolas had black hair. I think most of the elves had blonde or brown hair."
Ron was very puzzled and asked, 'What are you talking about? I know you're dicussing a book, but that's it."
Prince Felix smiled. "It's mostly read by Muggles. It is a fantasy trilogy. J.R.R. Tolkein was a Squib and he wrote the triology, as well as The Hobbit and a couple of other books. The world he created is known as Middle Earth. There are also histories and lost tales. He was a great writer, though he might have gone a bit overboard. He created an entire Elvish language, made genaolgies of ruling houses, and worked on a calender."
Hermione replied, "I have the trilogy at home, as well as The Hobbit. I can write home and have Mum or Dad send it to me so you can read it, Ron."
Harry asked, "What are hobbits? And I take it the elves aren't like the house elves?"
Hermione gave an unladylike snort. "Of course not. For one thing, they look human, except for their pointed ears and great beauty. They're also excellent archers and have other skills, too. And they don't die unless they're killed or waste away from sorrow. Hobbits are the 'little folk'. They're smaller than dwarves, usually have curly hair and like to eat. They like to have afternoon tea, dinner and supper both, and a second breakfast. Oh, and they go around barefoot, since their feet are tough and grow hair. And dwarves in this trilogy are taller than the ones in our world."
Prince Felix nodded. "It is a fine triology. Now, let us discuss some other things. A few goblins have joined our side, thanks to Bill Weasley, myself, and Filius. Filius is part of the group, by the way. Most of the teachers are. Sibyll Trelawney isn't, because she isn't quite fit to be a member. But the rest are, I believe. A few werewolves have also joined, thanks to Remus. We're still working on the vampires."
Suddenly Harry gave a gasp and his face fell forward, almst knocking over his plate. Hermione reached over and pulled him up. 'What happened?" asked Neville nervously.
Harry whispered, "Get Luna here, now!" Ginny jumped up and headed for the Ravenclaw table. A minute later, she was back with Luna.
Ginny asked, "Okay, so what happened? Did you get a vision?"
Harry nodded. "Heliopaths." Hermione made a disbelieving sound, then glanced at Luna and muttered an apology. Harry continued, "At least, I saw a column of flaming things. Several of them. I don't know what they are, but I guess they would be heliopaths. That's the only thing I can think of, and they fit the description that Luna mentioned last year at the Hogs Head."
Luna gave a gasp. "So the Ministry really does have an army of Heliopaths! I always thought so."
Harry shook his head. "Not anymore, Luna. I distinctly saw someone in Death Eater robe behind the heliopaths. Voldemort has control of heliopaths now."
This bit of news caused a sensation. Prince Felix said, "I must inform Dumbledore of this." He got up and went to the staff table. The others looked at Harry.
Harry sighed. "Something major always happens at or around Halloween ever since I got to Hogwarts. The only time something arguably good happened was with the beginning of the Tri-Wizard Tournament."
Prince Felix returned a few minutes later. "Dumbledore is taking control of things. He wants the D.A. to practice and be ready in case there is a heliopath attack. And Luna, you are to report to Dumbledore after the feast and tell him all you know about such creatures." He hurried away, looking preoccupied.
The feast soon ended and Luna followed Professor Dumbleodre to his office. the others went to the Gryffindor common room to discuss the vision Harry got.
June 14th, 2005, 6:56 pm
Chapter Fifteen continued
Hermione was still a little skeptical, since Harry didn't even know what Heliopaths looked like. He just sighed and replied, "Look, they're the only thing I can think of that are flaming. Luna began describing them last year until you cut her off and said they didn't exist, Hermione. As the crumple-horned snorkack is real, I'm willing to believe that the other creatures Luna talks about exists, too. And unless you happen to know of some other creature that are flaming columns, I'll stick with thinking they're heliopaths."
Hermione thought for a moment, then answered, "Well, I haven't read about any creatures that are flaming columns. So I guess the creatures in your vision have to be heliopaths."
Ginny put in, "Then that means Newt Scamander will have to come put with a new edition of Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them. He has to add heliopaths and snorkacks to the list." Then she turned red. "I don't know why I'm saying this. I should be focusing about the vision."
Neville asked, "How did you get this vision, Harry? I thought you were doing Occulmency and block things that V-V-Voldemort sends you."
Harry sighed. "It wasn't that kind of vision, Neville. My scar didn't hurt. It was more like I was getting a vision of the future."
"You're a seer?" asked Ron incredulously. "Like Trelawney? No, she's mostly a fraud. I mean, you're getting clear pictures of the future?"
"I don't know," replied Harry impatiently. "It was just one bloody vision, Ron! Do you expect me to be able to tell from that that I'm a seer, when I've never shown any signs of it before? I've never even made a prophecy like Rhia and Trelawney, and they're not strongly gifted with this 'Inner Eye'."
Hermione tsked. "Does it really matter at the moment? I don't think Harry is a seer or even has a trace of the Inner Eye at the moment. I've read that sometimes it is possible to get a vision of the future when you aren't one. Stress can bring it on. Or when you know you have to do something dangerous. And we all know Harry has to defeat an evil wizard. Since we have to help him, I wouldn't be surprised if we started getting visions of the future, too!"
Ginny nodded thoughtfully. "I suppose it could happen. Anyway, the D.A. has to prepare for an Heliopath attack. Luna knows the most about them. So at our next meeting, we'll tell everyone about this."
Neville added, "Then Luna can tell what she knows about Heliopaths. Harry, with the other members' help, can set up a defense plan. We'll all work on it and when the time comes, we'll all be ready to fight back."
Ron added, "Since they're columns, maybe we could fight them on brooms? That might be the best way to fight them. On the ground, we could get injured, whereas on brooms we could doge the heliopaths."
Harry turned to Ron, surprised, "Great idea, Ron. Hanging around Hermione has made you even smarter. It must have rubbed off."
Ron turned red, especially his ears, while Hermione blushed. Prince Felix walekd in then. "Luna has told Dumbledore everything she knows about heliopaths. And I'm here to dissect your vision, Harry. How did you get it? Through Voldemort."
Harry shook his head. "I've been doing well in Occulmency. And my scar didn't hurt. It was like a seeing-into-the-future-type vision."
Prince Felix raised a brow. "I didn't know you were a seer, Harry. Then, maybe you aren't. I recall reading something about non-seers sometimes being able to get visions."
Harry shrugged. "That's what Hermione says it likely is, Prince Felix."
Prince Felix nodded. "I see. Well, I want your D.A. working hard on this one. To quote Alastor Moody, 'Constant Viligance!' And I suggest flying on brooms. From what Luna said, that would be best. Like getting an egg from a dragon. I believe that is how you got your egg during the Tr-Wizard Tournament, Harry?"
Harry nodded again. Prince Felix smiled and said, "Well, I must go know. I have some things that need to be done. I'll try to visit again before the Christmas holidays. And see if you can't be allowed to stay at my home for Christmas. It's unplottable, and I've made Dumbledore the secret-keeper of the location in case the house at Spinner's End should be attacked and a back-up place is needed. Good-bye, you five."
The five bid Prince Felix good-bye and he left the common room. It was getting late then, so Harry went on up to bed, pondoring the vision he had gotten.
June 21st, 2005, 7:31 pm
At the next D.A. meeting, Harry told everyone there that he had received a vision that heliopaths would attack. Several of them looked confused and others asked what heliopaths were. He gestured to Luna, who responded.
"Heliopaths are beasts. They are great flaming coloums and can shoot balls of fire at you if you're not careful. They are very bright, though looking at one doesn't give you the same effect you would if you looked directly at the sun. Heliopaths can burn you, and there are theories that the Ministry kept an army of heliopaths to control the goblins. Goblins don't like light, since it hurts them. But it looks like the Death Eaters now have control of the heliopaths, or they got hold of another army."
Harry then took over. "Everyone has to learn how to shoot water out of their wands so they can douse whatever fireballs the heliopaths try to send at us. And we are all going to work on flying. For those of you who don't have a broom or are uncomfortable flying, you can either use a school broom or pair up with someone who has a broom. For example, Neville, who doesn't have a broom, could pair up with me. He'd ride behind me while I did the steering and help conjure water."
The other members nodded and Hermione gave the spell that was needed to conjure wtaer. The Room of Requirement provided some large tubs and everyone worked on conjuring water into the tubs. By the end of the lesson, everyone had the hang of the spell. So it was decided that at the next meeting, which would be on Friday, everyone would then work out flying plan. Ron, who knew strategy, would work out the plan, and Hermione was to help him.
Everyone left the meeting quiety discussing what the news. A few Ravenclaws stopped Luna on her way out and apoligized for having made fun of her and her theories. Luna, being her usul self, just took everything in stride and said calmly, "That's all right. It wasn't necessary for you to all believe me."
Harry, Ron, Hermione, and Ginny stayed behind to vanish all the water from the tubs before they left, too. On the way back to the common room, Harry had another vision. This one showed what appeared to be lobsters, though Harry had a feeling that they weren't. In the vision, the 'lobsters' were scurrying after the heliopaths and Harry heard a voice that sounded a lot like Voldemort hiss, "Perfect. We'll get them in, and have the stupid house-elves serve them to the school for dinner."
When Harry reported the vision, Hermione frowned. "Another one? And you said they looked like lobsters, but probably weren't?"
Luna said, excitedly, "They're probably the Loathsome Lobster!" At the other's questioning look, she added, "Though Fantastic Beast and Where to Find Them calls them the mackled malaclaw."
Hermione nodded in comprehension and began describing the macled malaclaw. They looked like lobsters, but eating one would result in a high fever and unsightly green rash. If you were bitten by one, there was the side effect of being unluckly for about a week. So if you were bitten, all bets, wagers, and spectulative ventures should be cancelled, as they are sure to go against you.
Harry deduced that Voldemort wanted to put the entire population of Hogwarts out nby making them sick with the mackled malaclaws. Harry sent his friends on ahead and he went to find Rhia to tell her about his vision. Rhia frowned, then said, "That is odd. Well, I'll tell Dumbledore and make sure the house elves don't go around cooking anything remotely resembling lobsters al all."
Harry felt a little better and returned to the common room.
June 23rd, 2005, 2:24 pm
Chapter 16 continued
The next day, a very tired Rhia summoned Harry into her office. "Dumbledore said I had to tell the Dark Lord about the vision you had of the mackled malaclaw. Or rather, that I should, so he wouldn't suspect that I was a double agent. Well, he wasn't pleased to hear you knew about his plan to make all of Hogwarts sick. The Dark Lord raved, then put me under the Cruciatus Curse for a couple of minutes for bringing him the 'bad' news. The Dark Lord wasn't satisfied with just that, and put Wormtail and another Death Eater under Crucio, too."
Harry gasped. "That's terrible! For you anyway. I don't care about Wormtail. Are you are right?"
Rhia replied, "Yes, I am. Poppy, that is Madam Pomfrey, gave me potion and told me to take it easy for the rest fo the evening. Anyway, as you know about the malaclaws, the Dark Lord has scrapped that plan."
Harry was pleased to hear about that. As Rhia had no more news, he returned to the common room, where he told his friends what she had told him. The next day was Friday, and that evening, the members of the D.A. went out to the Quidditch field. Almost all the members had either a school broom or a broom of their own. Neville, Hermione, Justin Finch-Fletchy, and Daphne Greengrass were the ones who weren't comfortable enough to fly a broom on their own.
Neville partnered with Harry, Hermione with Ron, Daphne with Blaise, and Justin with Ernie. Then the entire group flew up into the air and worked on flying around. Sometimes they would also conjure water from their wands and shoot them at large tubs that some house elves had placed on the ground for them. By 8:30, Harry was satisfied that they would work well, and sent everyone back inside.
The meeting ended not after that. Harry knew that everyone would do admirably and likely defeat the small army of heliopaths. As the vision he had had shown a setting sun, he knew that the attack would probably happen sometime after dinner. It also wasn't likely to happen on a day of a D.A. meeting, so he had told everyone to have their brooms ready and assigned two people form each house to be ready to get the other members when the attack happened.
For example, if the attack happened while the Hufflepuffs were having Quidditch practice, Zacharias Smith and Summerby would go get the other members, while the others would stay to defend against the attack.
Rhia came to Harry the next day. "I could go and tell the Dark Lord that you had a vision about his heliopaths. Then he wouldn't use them to attack Hogwarts."
Harry looked at her like she was crazy. "Are you out of your mind? Sorry, Professor. But it wouldn't make sense. I know about the attack, and the D.A. is ready to fight back. Whereas I'd have to deal with another attack if Vodemort knew that I knew about his plan. And it's not likely I'll have a vision telling me what his new attack plan will be."
Rhia sighed. "I see that you're right. All right, I won't let the Dark Lord know that you know but his plans. Currently he thinks that your vision was merely a fuke. If he knew that you had two visions, he'd certianly get a bit nervous and start coming up with different plans of attack to combat it."
Harry nodded. "True. Well, see you, Rh-Professor Potter." He turned and went up to the library to see if there were any books that mentioned heliopaths.
June 28th, 2005, 5:27 pm
Chapter 16 continued
The D.A. was out on the Quidditch pitch practicing their formation plan when suddenly Dennis Creevy screeched, "The attack is about to begin!" Everyone turned to see flames in the distance. The D.A. quickly flew out toward the gate. They didn't want the heliopaths to get onto the grounds and prehaps burn things up.
A Death Eater, who was behind the twenty or so heliopaths snarled, "How did they know? Did that Potter get a vision of this too?"
Seven of the D.A. members separated from the rest to deal with the six Death Eaters, while the rest saw to the heliopaths. Harry manuvered his broom around to avoid the balls of fire being shot up. Neville clutched on to Harry with one arm and used his other to conjure water to put out the flames. Whenever possible, Harry would conjure some water too.
The end of Cho's broom caught on fire, since she hadn't been quick enough to dodge a fireball. She put it out by conjuring water, then spouted some water at the heliopath responsible for it. Blaise Zabini was busy sending hexes at the Death Eaters, and dodging the occasional heliopath that came his way.
After half an hour, five of the Death Eaters had been taken out of action and ten of the heliopaths had been vanquished. Six more turned tail and fled, disappearing into thin air. The one Death Eater that hadn't been stunned followed the heliopaths, persumably to report the failed attack to Voldemort. After another ten minutes, the last five heliopaths had been vanquished, too. Ginny and Hermione dismounted and ran back to the castle to get Dumbledore.
He came out with them ten minutes later. "Congratulations on your fine defense. You all fought well and defeated the heliopaths. It is a pity one of the Death Eaters escaped to tell Voldemort what happened. I'll take charge of the five Death Eaters. Minister Bones will want to question them. Then they'll be going to Azkaban. In the meantime, you might might want to clean up this mess and then see to yourselves."
The D.A. members put out any lingering flames. A number of them, including Harry, had soot on their robes or faces. Cho had to pull out the burnt twigs from her broom and with some transfiguration fixed the twigs that were just a bit singed. Harry congratulated everyone on their fine work and then the D.A. went inside.
The next week was the first Quidditch match of the year. Luckily it was Gryffindor versus Slytherin. If it had been another house, Harry would have felt a little bad about palying against fellow D.A. members. He remembered what Hermione had said last year about Quidditch, how it didn't help inter-house relationships. He now saw her point, though he wasn't going to admit it to her anytime soon. And he was very glad Blasie and Daphne weren't on the team, or he'd feel a little bad about palying against Slytherin.
Dean Thomas had taken over Lee Jordan's role as commentator. He didn't go off topic like Lee did, such as commenting how pretty some of the players were. But he did have some bias against Slytherins and it showed when he mentioned fouls and such. The match lasted for about thirty minutes. Ron was on top form and blocked most of the attempts agianst the goal. The Gryffindors cheered and sang their version of "Weasley is Our King." Some students from Ravenclaw and Hufflepuff picked it up.
Katie, Ginny, and Courtney flew very well and got through ten goals. The score was 100 to 20 and twenty minutes had passed when Fiona accidentally sent the bludger too hard. Sean tried to hit it toward a Slytherin, but he missed and the bludger hit Courtney, knocking her out. Natalie was called in to take Courtney's palce. While she was sorry about Courtney, she was glad to get in some playing time for the first match. She made three goals of her own and assisted Katie and Ginny with four more.
Finally Harry caught sight of the snitch by Malfoy's ear. The score was 200 to 40 then. Malfoy however, didn't notice the snitch was near him. He was too busy taunting Harry, saying, "You might have escaped one attack from the Dark Lord, but you won't again. He's going to get the Death Eaters out of Azkaban and come after you again."
Harry ignored the taunts and flew toward Malfoy. Finally Malfoy noticed that the snitch was near him. He reached out when suddenly there was a crack. Sean had sent a bludger right at him and it hit his arm, probably breaking it. Fiona sent another bludger, that knocked Malfoy right off his broom, so he couldn't catch it with his other arm. Harry swopped down and caught the snitch. Dean shouted, "Malfoy gets knocked out and Potter gets the snitch! Gryffindor wins, 250 points to 40!"
There were cheers as Harry smiled and landed. Tracey Davis, one of the Slytherin chasers, was scolding Malfoy. "Didn't you see the snitch earlier? You shouldn't have been taunting Potter!"
Another player grumbled, "If you'd paid attention, then you'd have gotten the snitch, instead of having two lousy first years break your arm and knock you off."
Harry couldn't help laughing at that. He handed Madam Hooch the snitch to be out away, then followed his team inside to shower and change. Once in the common room, a party was held celebrating their victory. Lots of people complimented Ron on his fine keeping, and the first years were proud of Sean and Fiona knocking out Malfoy in time to prevent him from getting the snitch. Though it really wouldn't have mattered if he had gotten the snitch, Harry refected later. Gryffindor would still have won the match.
Other students complimented the chasers and Harry. Courtney wasn't at all mad that she'd been knocked out halfway through the game. Natalie was glad that she'd gotten some playing time after all. When the party finally ended, Harry smiled at his team and hped that they would win the Quidditch Cup again this year. After all, Professor McGonagall had gotten used to seeing it in her office.
July 1st, 2005, 3:04 pm
Harry went to a Animagus lesson on Saturday afternoon. He had improved enough to get the wings and tail of a phoenix. Also, his head his just starting to turn phoenix-like. By the end of the lesson, he had gotten his head to become a phoenix, but his legs still remained human. Luna, on the other hand, was able to turn completely into a luna moth and Hermione was completely an otter, except for the tail. She managed to produce a stub of one, but it wasn't the fine rudder real otters had.
Next week was the Quidditch match between Ravenclaw and Hufflepuff. Harry attended the match and sat next to Luna, who was wearing a hat with an eagle on it. He had pinned a blue rosette on his robe, but waved a small pennant that was yellow and had a badger on it. Even though Luna was his girlfriend, he did have friends in Hufflepuff, like Ernie and Susan. Therefore, he supported both teams.
The Hufflepuff chasers were excellent and got in numermous goals. After twenty minutes, the score was 250 to 100, Hufflepuff. That was when Cho and Summerby caught sight of the snitch. The two of them went after it. Dean shouted, "Chang and Summerby have seen the snitch! Look at the two of them go!"
Just then, Ravenclaw scored and Dean shouted, "The score is now two hundred fifty to one hundred ten, Hufflepuff!" Two seconds after that, Cho swooped down and caught the snitch right under Summerby's nose. There were cheers and Dean shouted, "And Ravenclaw manages to win the match, two hundred sixty to two hundred fifty!"
Harry jumped up and kissd Luna on the cheek. She was smiling broadly. 'I'm so gald Ravenclaw managed to win!" she exclaimed. The spectators left the stands and Luna headed for the victory party in the Ravenclaw common room.
November ended not long after the Quidditch match. The first weekend of December was a Hogsmeade one. Harry went with Luna and together they bought Christmas presents for all their friends. The only time they separated was to get presents for each other. Harry picked out a silver bracelet set with sapphires, a gold chain with an eagle charm, and a silk scarf of pale blue with pink roses.
At noon, he and Luna joined their friends for lunch at the Three Broomsticks. Luna ordered some lunch and a gillywater with onion. Harry got his lunch and some butterbeer. When lunch was over, the six of them returned to Hogwarts.
Sorry this post is a trifle short, but I don't know what else to write. And I'm not going to have Yule Ball, since it would look like I'm copying Madelina's fic. But there might be a St. Valentine's Day ball though, set in the manner of a Sadie Hawkins dance. (the girls ask the boys to the dance)
July 11th, 2005, 3:43 pm
I've been on vacation and this is the first chance I've been able to get to a computer. Sorry about the wait.
Chapter 17 continued
December passed and Harry found it very boring. There were the D.A. meetings and the Animagus lessons, but since those happened weekly, it didn't elevate his boredom. The only exciting thing that happened was when Harry finally was able to turn fully into a phoenix. He was pleased with that, but couldn't wait for Christmas.
A few days before the holidays, Harry had a talk with Rhia. "It's so boring here. I wish something interesting would happen."
Rhia shook her head. "Haven't you ever heard the saying, 'Be careful what you wish for, since you might just get it?' Or the curse 'May you live in interesting times?' Harry, think more carefully before you start wishing. By the way, things will get interesting enough when you have to face Voldemort."
Harry looked thoughtful. "I guess you're right, Professor. But I do hope something interesting will happen that isn't Voldemort-level."
Rhia sighed. "Well, your Christmas will be fun. You'll be spending it with your friends at Spinner's End. And on Boxing Day, you and your friends can visit Felix at his house."
Harry replied, "That'll be great. R-Professor, I'll go tell my friends about the visit." He finished the cup of eggnog Rhia had given him and then ran up to the common room.
Two days later, Harry was packed up. He and his friends boarded the Hogwarts Express. Malfoy came by looking very sour. For once, Crabbe and Goyle weren't with him. "Potter, what are you doing here? I did't know you were going home for Christmas. Or did the weasel or the mudblood invite you-"
Ron stood up and snapped, "Don't you dare call Hermione that, ferret!"
Draco flushed, remembering what his animagus form was supposed to be, plus when the fake Moody had turned him into a ferret.
Harry stood up and said in a very calm voice, "Draco Malfoy, I suggest you leave now."
Malfoy sneered and replied, "Make me." Suddenly a voice behind him shouted, "Furnculus!" Another voice shouted, "Petrificus Totalus!" Malfoy fell to the ground, petrified and sprouting boils at the same time.
Daphne and Blaise stepped forward. Daphne was straightening her somewhat mussed robes as she said, "Blaise and I were, er, together in the hall when we saw Malfoy walk by. He didn't see us though."
Blaise continued, "So we decided to see what he was up to. And we found him bothering you guys. So we decided to help you guys out by taking him out of action."
Neville replied, "Thanks, Blaise and Daphne."
Daphne smiled. "No big deal. Malfoy's a git, anyway." She pointed her wand at Malfoy and levitated him outside and onto a coat rack.
Blaise said, "Crabbe and Goyle are idiots and wonm't be looking for Malfoy for awhile,. And when they do, we'll put them off. Well, see you. And Merry Christmas."
The two left and Harry and his friends resumed the conversation they were having. Every so often Ron and Hermione went out to patrol the halls. The witch with the food cart came by and the six bought some snacks. Toward three in the afternoon, the train arrived at Platform 9 and 3/4. The Weasleys, Moody, Lupin, Tonks, Mr. Lovegood, and Mrs. Longbottom were waiting for them. They greeted the teens and then led them to the magically expanded van that Rhia had recently bought.
After two hours, they arrived at Rosebud Mansion on Spinner's End. Rhia met them at the door and led everyone in. "You have the same rooms as you did over the summer. Get settled and then come down for dinner. After dinner, you can help with the decorating. Daisy and Winky already did most of it, but there's still the tree and living room to do. And also a gingerbread castle. It's Potter tradition for us and not the house elves to decorate the tree and make the gingerbread castle in the shape of Hogwarts."
Harry grinned. "That'll be fun. The Dursleys never let me help with any of the decorating. And they explained my not getting any good gifts by saying that I was bad."
Rhia's mouth tightened and Snape, who had come up behind her, made a muttered comment about how he hadn't been treated as badly by his father. Rhia smiled a minute later and said brightly, "Well, at least you did have some nice Christmases after you attended Hogwarts. Guys, you'd better hurry up to your rooms."
Harry, Ron, and Neville went up to the room they had shared for the summer. They unpacked some things and at six went down to dinner. Daisy had made a nice meal for everyone. Harry stuffed himself with chicken, vegetables, gravy, pudding, and treacle tart. After dinner, he and his friends decorated the Christmas tree while the adults did the rest of the living room. Once the mistletoe was put up, everyone took excuses to kiss under it. Ron dragged Hermione there ten times, while Harry took Luna there six times. Mr. and Mrs. Weasley also took a few turns, and Harry saw Rhia and Snape under there once.
When the decorating was over, Harry went upstairs to play a game of exploding snap with hsi friends. After some eggnog and cookies, they all went to bed.
December 15th, 2005, 7:50 pm
Chapter 17 continued
The next day was Christmas Eve. Harry spent the morning helping Rhia and everyone else decorate the gingerbread castle. It had been built in the shape of Hogwarts and there were good-natured arguments as to what sweets and candied decorations should be put on the castle. After two hours, the gingerbread castle was complete and Rhia took a photo of it, with all the decorators of it standing behind it.
After lunch, Harry and his friends spent half the afternoon playing chess, gobstones, and Exploding Snap. After three hours, it got boring, however. Harry and his friends were wondering what to do next when Rhia and Snape came in. Rhia was smiling brightly. "Come on everyone! We are going to have a sleigh ride around the property and sing Christmas carols! Go put on your coats and things."
Harry, Ron, and Neville ran up to their room and quickly bundled up. They then joined the girls downstairs in the stable, where they saw a Nativity scene set up. Harry loooked questioningly at Rhia, who responded, "I'm not exactly Christian, but I do find the story of Jesus' birth enchanting. That's why I have the scene set up."
Harry examined the scene and saw that the figurines reached a few inches above the knee. The faces of the figures looked peaceful and happy. Harry sighed and wished he could be as happy and peaceful. However with the geis of killing or being killed by Voldemort, he couldn't exactly be happy and peaceful.
Luna slipped a hand in his and whispered, "Don't worry, Harry. The prophecy Rhia made says that you'll defeat Voldemort."
Harry brightened at this and helped the others pull out the sleigh. The horse, Aurora, was hitched to it and everyone got in. Rhia took hold of the reins and they were off. Silencing Spells had been cast around the property, so nobody outside of it could hear them. Snape handed each person a book with the lyrics to carols. Ron chose "Good King Wencelas" to begin and everyone began singing, except Snape. He looked sour over the whole affair, but kept all comments to himself and just listened to the others singing. Luna chose next and she selected "Silent Night."
One hour and sixteen carols later, the sleigh returned to the barn. Everyone got out and the teens went inside the house, where Daisy and Winky were waiting with hot chocolate and biscuits in the shape of stars, candy canes, bells, pine trees, wreaths, and Father Christmas hats. A few minutes later, Snape and Rhia came in from putting the sleigh away and tending to Aurora.
After dinner, everyone gathered in the living room. Rhia said, "It is Potter tradition to open one present each on Christmas Eve. Of course, most of you aren't Potters, but it doesn't matter. You can each select one present and open it."
Harry looked through the presents under the tree and took one that was marked for it. The attached card read, "Merry Christams, harry! I love you. Luna." He unwrapped the gift to find a chain made of butterbeer caps and a book on Quidditch manuveurs. He turned to thank Luna and found that she was unwrapping his gift to her.
She gave a squeal of delight when she saw the jewelry and scarf and turned to hug Harry. "It's wonderful! Thanks, Harry!" She dragged him over to the mistletoe. After checking to make sure no nargles were lurking in it, she kissed Harry, then returned to her present. Harry stammered out his thanks of her gift, as Luna put on the necklace and bracelet and tied the scarf around her neck.
Harry then turned to see that Ron and Hermione were unwrapping each others gifts, while Ginny and Neville were doing the same. Harry then looked at the adults. Snape and Rhia had opened each others gifts, while Mrs. Weasley and Mr. Weasley were doing the same. Harry wasn't wasn't surprised to find Tonks and Remus doing the same as well, while Fred and George were opening each others gifts.
After half an hour, everyone began singing carols, pausing between songs to drink eggnog and much on biscuits. Finally at eleven, Rhia said, "Everyone off to bed so Father Christmas will have a chance to leave his presents."
The others laughed at this and Ron said, "Come on, Professor, you know we don't believe in Father Christmas any more."
Rhia's eyes twinkled as she replied, "Are you sure he doesn't exist? Luna would disagree with you."
Hermione shook her head. "Luna can believe in Father Christmas if she likes, but I won't. Besides, how can he leave presents to the millions of children on this planet all in one night?"
Luna responded, "He takes advantage of the time zones and uses a time turner, of course!"
Hermione looked startled by this answer. "It does make sense. But that still doesn't mean I'm going to believe in Father Christmas."
Harry said, "Well, maybe Father Christmas does exist, but he only goes to children that are alone and won't get presents from others. The Dursleys never gave me anything for Christmas, but I would always find a something by my bed every Christmas. Small things, like a Mars Bar, or a piece of cake, or a top. I never mentioned it to the Dursleys, but I knew someone had to give it to me."
Luna stated firmly, "Harry's right. There is such a person as Father Christmas, but he usually visits the poor children or orphans. Also, his spirit lives in anyone who is kind and nice and gives gifts to other people."
Mrs. Weasley interrupted the discussion over Father Christmas with, "It doesn't matter if he is real or not. Everyone, just go to bed!"
That ended the conversation and Harry went upstairs and got ready for bed. He had forgotten about the little presents he had been given at past Christmases until Rhia brought up the subject of Father Christmas. Prehaps there had been a weak Memory Charm put on the the food and little toys to make him forget that he had gotten them on Christmas. After some thought, he got into bed and soon fell asleep.