Thread: Crossover: Answers Come The Hard Way Sa+16
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Old 03-30-2015, 08:36 PM   #5 (permalink)
Connie
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Join Date: Aug 2009
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Hogwarts RPG Name:
Janet Lynn Gordon
Fifth Year
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Werecats are people too! Reader of Fan Fictions

Hey Guys, thanks for reading. I hope you are able to stay caught up in the story plot. These nine one shots will close all the story arks I didn't close in Epiphany. I wanted them to have their own story to tell them. I was afraid of closing them with Epiphany because I didn't want to take away from either story just to close it all. I felt that Epiphany needed to end the way it did, and that these story arks would take away from it. And I felt that closing the arks with Epiphany would detract from the story value of Epiphany and make it about these arks. I hope you are enjoying them. Comments are welcome.


The Raging Storm

The sun had not yet dawned but Harry was awake none the less. The wind had howled all through the night with thunderstorms prevailing fiercely over the stars and moon trying to peek through to no reward. Rain drops had formed solid waves of water as the fierce wind blew the rain sideways onto the side of the house opposing the storm. The lightning was brutally bold to intrude on the dwellers of the house through the windows. The dark rooms were lit in bright flashes exposing eerie shadows to move about the walls and objects sitting defiant to the ways of the storm. The house did not yield to the storm and stood safe from ruin, protecting the family within. It seemed odd for a storm of this magnitude to force its way onto the slumbering countryside this late in the season.

However; it wasn’t the storm that had awakened Harry this early morning. It had been a nightmare. He hadn’t had a nightmare since, well, since he died and was brought back to life a little over a month ago when he defeated Tom Riddle and the Vernier. That had to be the reason for the nightmare. Today was the World Cup Quidditch makeup Game. Much to Harry’s chagrin, Kingsley had ordered him to attend. He looked at the clock and sighed in defeat. It was only three o’clock. Harry closed his eyes and tried to sleep, but something broke into his calming down process.

Again his eyes flew open. He thought of the conversation he had with the Minister of Magic about the Goblin Army and the research he, Ron and Wes had been doing on it. Surprisingly, Kingsley was willing to let it go. “It happened too far back to worry about it now. Just let it go,” he had said. But Harry said he had to find out who was behind the Army and what it was intended to be used for. He argued, when Kingsley protested, that the Malfoy family’s lives had been changed for so many years and has had lasting effects on them still to just let it go. His words came to him again, “When I found out Lucius had been radically hypnotized I told Draco and his mom I would find out who did it and why. I am a man of my word Kingsley and you know it. And besides, who’s to say that a different group of people isn’t planning another devastating takeover of the government or undermining so called people of lesser worth. And don’t forget I just eliminated the army; not whoever created it.” Kingsley gave in and said he could continue, but to not make any arrests until he was well briefed on the matter of who did what and why.

Harry took his thoughts to the day he and Ginny went to watch James tryout for Quidditch. While they were in the office all but one of the portraits were paying attention to them. Harry’s research into this one man was enlightening. It also broadened his research to include Phineas Nigellus Black; and subsequently, Phineas’s eldest son Sirius Black. It seems that the two Headmasters were also known to be friends with Ministers’ of magic, two of them to be more precise. Ignatius Tuft, who was forced from office for trying to breed Dementors; and, Hector Fawley, who also happened to be forced from office for his supposed short sighted views on the Grindelwald’s Revolution.

The names swirled in Harry’s head as he became drowsy. Dreams that didn’t make sense formed and became increasingly disturbing. He was in a maze and at every turn someone ran full blast at him screaming things Harry couldn’t understand. He tried to follow them when they flew right through him. Every time he gained on them a new face zoomed in front of him screaming horrible things but he didn’t know what they were saying. Harry was breathing hard running as fast as he could; not following the faces now, but running away from them. He turned his head quickly to see if they were still following him. He couldn’t understand why he was running from them, he wasn’t afraid of them, but he was afraid of something, as a matter of fact, he was terrified. Suddenly Harry was picking himself up off the ground. He had run right into a wall while his head was turned. He looked up surprised that it wasn’t a wall after all; it was Hagrid. He wasn’t alone either; Sirius was with him. Neither one was happy to see him. Hagrid began brushing the dirt off Harry with each stroke causing him to sink into the soft ground.

“Ye oughtn’t to be messing in things you have no business messing in Harry. What are you trying to do?”

Harry tried to stop Hagrid from brushing the dirt off him; he was nearly buried. “Hagrid stop, please stop! Sirius, make him stop; he doesn’t know he is killing me.” But Sirius just sorrowfully shook his head.

“Why would you do this to us Harry? I loved you as I would my own son. You betray us and expect us to help you? I don’t think so. I guess you really aren’t like your dad after all; he wouldn’t approve. I’m sorry son, but we can’t allow it.”

Kingsley appeared as Harry was up to his chin in the murky sludge. “Quicksand,” Harry shouted. “Kingsley, will you help me?” he asked curiously as the older man stood with a crafty smile on his face.

“Give me your wand, the Cloak of Invisibility, and the Stone of Resurrection and I will get you out.”

Harry couldn’t believe what was happening to him. He wondered why he couldn’t just magic his way out, but he couldn’t. All at once Harry knew his life was over. He was going to either suffocate in Quicksand, or be eaten by Aragorn because looking down from his eight huge legs and hundreds of eyes was the giant spider that had once told his sons and daughters to eat him and Ron. The Acromantula brought his ugly head down to Harry’s and with his pincers clicking just inches from Harry’s head, what was left above the mire, said, “Mens sana in Corpore sano.”

Harry understood and nodded his head. A man who was riding behind the head of the spider reached down and grabbed Harry by his hair and pulled him out of the deathtrap he had found himself in. He thanked the man and Aragorn and stood shivering looking at Hagrid and Sirius. Kingsley threw a blanket over him as Sirius said, “We don’t want anything to happen to you Harry; but we can’t let you ruin our lives.”

Harry said over and over, “I’ll work it all out somehow. I won’t let anything hurt you.”

Ginny was shaking him now and calling for him. He opened his eyes and took a huge breath. He swallowed and took in quick gasps of breath and then finally calming down; he looked at Ginny and tried to smile but was very unnerved with the nightmare. It had seemed so real. He put his hand on his throat and chest just to make sure he wasn’t covered in the muck of the Quicksand. “Are you ok; did I hurt you?”

“I’m fine, Love. You were just breathing hard and your heart was racing. What does it mean; some words you were saying; men’s sauna something or other? Is it some kind of Curse or something?” she asked, fearful of his white face and the fact that he had obviously been having a nightmare. She caressed his chest, as she often did when he didn’t have on a shirt, stopping over his nipple that became aroused with her touch. The color returned to his face and he rolled over on his side to face her.

“Mens sana in Corpore sano,” is Walter Aragon’s motto. He was a headmaster at Hogwarts back when Hagrid started school there. I think he was a big influence on Hagrid because he was very interested in Magical Creatures. I wonder if it was to his memory Hagrid named his pet spider Aragorn. Anyway, the phrase translated from Latin means, a sound mind in a sound body.”

Ginny’s caressing hand moved lightly over his ribcage and rested on his waist. She narrowed her eyebrows trying to make sense of what he told her. “And this phrase was causing you to have a nightmare? What on earth does it mean then?”

Harry smiled and wanting to forget the nightmare, he concentrated on her soft naked shoulder that was exposed to the sunlight now streaming in through the window. He took the long heavy hair, that was draped around her shoulder and falling over her breast, in his hand and brought it to his face. He took in the fragrance and let the silky red lock slowly fall through his hand. His strong arms were around her now gently pulling her against him. He closed his eyes, his lips were just inches from her lips when there was a soft knock on the door followed with, “Daddy are you and Mummy up yet?”

His eyes opened and he smiled at his wife. He turned from her and got up, pulling on a pair of jeans and answered the door. “Good morning, Darling Angel. Did you sleep through the storm last night? I checked on you several times but you seemed to be sleeping.”

Lily smiled and said, “Yes, I slept just fine after the first time when you checked on me. I was just pretending to be asleep so I wouldn’t be in trouble. I knew I would be safe since you’re home. I love you being home and not having to save anyone and stuff. When you go back to work, will you come home every evening like other daddy’s do?”

Harry sat in the big comfy chair looking very serious. “That is my hope and desire, Angel. I will not make promises though with things that I cannot control. Sometimes things happen and have to be dealt with.” His mood became solemn with the things heavy on his mind, and the memories that haunted him. He swallowed hard and pushed his hands through his hair slightly grasping both hands at the strands and stopping behind his ears. He bent forward and rested his elbows on his knees. Then he sat up and saw his daughter watching him and he smiled for her sake.

“On a different note, are you excited to go to the game today? Mum told me you are going to be sitting with her in the press booth. I know I don’t have to tell you how important it will be for you to be very still and not distract Mummy.”

Lilly smiled and said she would be very good. “And besides, I’m going to be watching and making my own story in case Mummy misses something. I think I’m pretty much going to be her right hand man, only of course I’m a girl, but it’s just a saying anyway.”

Harry chuckled and said, “I’m sure you will be the best right hand man she’ll ever have.” He pulled her on his lap when she stepped close and leaned forward to him. She smiled and picked up a strand of his long hair and wrapped the curls around her fingers in thought. He noticed she was looking at the scars on his chest and then she put her small hand on his chest over his heart.

“Daddy, will you be okay at the game today? I can sit with you if you would like my company. I don’t think you have forgotten the awful things that happened that day, and it makes you sad and afraid.”

It happened before he could stop it; the tears rolling down his face. His voice cracked when he finally was able to answer her. “Thank you, my Darling Angel, but no, you need to sit with your mum and not worry about me at all. It is scary remembering that day, but, I know it’s all over and can’t hurt me or keep me from you guys anymore.”

“Daddy, did you ever have to kill anyone other than Tom Riddle?”

Harry sat staring into his daughters brown eyes knowing her questions were innocent and the reason for them was to understand things. She wanted to protect him from things in his past. It was hard to bring words to mind to answer her. His throat was closing rapidly and finally he blinked the flooded wells of his eyes clear.

His words came quietly and broken at first. Then he cleared his throat and spoke softly. “There was a personal war declared against me before I was even born. It’s the reason my parents were killed, and why I have this scar on my forehead. It is thought that I killed Tom Riddle, known as, Lord Voldemort when I was a year old because his death curse reflected back onto him. From the time I was eleven years old, I thought I killed someone because that is what was told to me. All those years thinking that, kind of conditioned me. I grew up fighting for my life in one way or another. It came to a point where I had to kill or be killed. I didn’t like it, and I never wanted it to be that way, but I knew I would be able to if I had to because I had done it before. I don’t know how many people I have killed, but I do know that I didn’t want it to be that way. And there were many people who died to keep me alive. I have always felt that I killed those people as much as if I was the one who used the wand against them. There was an innocent life that was taken because I failed to protect … I can’t remember. Whether it is right or wrong to feel this way, I have trouble dealing with it.”

Harry rubbed his eyes and drew a breath and released it. “The sad fact of the matter is, sometimes war is necessary to right a wrong when words can’t be found to solve the wrong. If the issue of what is wrong is serious enough then it goes beyond words to violence. The reason I had to go to war is because a very large group of people believed they were better and wanted to live above Muggles and other magical creatures that weren’t human and began persecuting them. Some even wanted to kill them. Many innocent people died because they weren’t born the way some thought they should be. Words could never be agreed upon so the violence of war had to be used to stop these people. A lot of times a truce can be agreed upon. That’s when both sides agree on certain arrangements where they have to compromise some of the things they were fighting for. This war though, could have no compromises because the protagonist’s of evil wanted superiority over all beings without exception and we couldn’t allow that to happen. This makes war so terrible because there has to be so much killing before the cause is won or lost. There must be a victory for the cause of equality for all; otherwise the loss of our humanity would be too great to overcome.”

Harry swallowed and took another breath to calm his emotions. “And then there is the aftermath of the war to consider. There is so much pain in war that whether you are the one inflicting the pain or you are the one receiving the pain it doesn’t heal as fast as like a cut or something like that. The memory of the pain and how long you had to live with that memory stays with you. My body is still healing, but I am able to get around pretty good. One day I will be able to move about without the pain in my body. But the pain I remember living with all my life… the reason for the pain… and being alone… betrayals…abandonment; these are things I am having a hard time with. But the good thing is that I’m not lost in my past. I know I have family and friends who love me, and don’t hold me responsible for the war. I’m sorry I have had to kill and I had to fight in the war and that I can’t put this behind me yet, but since I can’t, can you just be patient with me? I am trying so very hard.”

She nodded her head and said she would be the most patient person in the whole world for the rest of forever if he needed her to be. She hugged his neck tight and he held her tight to him. “Thank you Darling Angel.” He released her when he felt her try to get up. They smiled at each other and then Harry told her to go get ready for breakfast. “It’ll be time to leave before we know it. We don’t want to make Mummy late for her first job; do we?”

“Well, actually, Daddy, this is Mummy’s third story. She has already written two very good articles on both teams playing today to help people get excited for the teams.”

Lily ran out of the bedroom and Harry stood up and turned to Ginny who was still in bed clutching the blanket to her. He smiled innocently and said, “I stand corrected.” Ginny shook her head and said, “You told her way more than she needed to know. But she seems to have understood just fine.”

Harry shrugged his shoulders and said quietly, “She’s seen way more than she should have seen. She needs to understand just as much as I do.”
Ginny got out of bed and waved her wand over the bed adjusting the pillows, sheet, blanket and comforter until it was well made. Time is running short; do you want to shower together?”

Harry put his arms around her and kissed her passionately. “We could shower together if you don’t mind being late.” His impish grin moved her to a fit of giggles and said, “Well ordinarily I’d throw caution to the wind and chance being late, but since Lilly is waiting for us I think I’d better shower in here, and you can shower in the guest bath.”

They had their showers without delay and sat down for breakfast. Harry pulled out the chair beside him for Winky to join them, but Winky shook her head and told Harry to enjoy his breakfast with his family.

“Come on Winky, you’re family too. Please join us.”
She smiled and looked to Ginny for her approval. Ginny smiled lovingly and asked her to please join them. The little elf climbed up on the chair and ate with the family shyly. Lily asked her if she would like to go to the Quidditch game with them and Winky shook her head no. “Winky is not fond of the game. It is bringing Winky too many bad memories.”

Harry nodded his head fully understanding her feelings. As much as Harry loved the game, he wasn’t fond of going to this one either. There was a knock on the door and Harry excused himself from the table to answer it.

“Hey look who it is, come on in. We’re having breakfast if you’d like to join us.”

All his friends from North America and Atlantis came in the house beaming at Harry, so happy to see him. They all immediately noticed the deep cut on his cheek but were too polite to ask about it; all except for Rodney that is.

“Harry, what have you been doing? You surely haven’t been working; you’re not up to it yet. Are there more bad guys from that evil dude, Riddle?”
Everyone else stopped in the living room but Rodney went on out to the kitchen and sat down at the table. Lily passed him a plate of pancakes and then the butter and syrup. Winky snapped her fingers and steam rose from the stack and he was delighted. Ginny smiled and passed him some bacon and eggs and he grinned from ear to ear. “I love coming here, I always eat so well.”

Harry chuckled and motioned everyone else out to the table. He waved his hand nonchalantly and the table extended to accommodate the guests. Jack said they didn’t come to eat, they just didn’t know when they would need to leave to get to the game on time. “We don’t know where to park either,” added John as he took a seat beside Winky. Breakfast was enjoyed and everyone moved to the living room to wait for directions to Hogwarts.

“Nonsense, I’ll take us, it’s not a problem.” Harry looked at Ginny and asked if she had everything she needed. After she checked her notebooks and pens she nodded her head and said she was ready. He waited for Lily who was also checking to make sure she had her things as well. She nodded her head with a matter of fact look about her and said she was ready. They all joined hands and Harry made them all disappear and reappear at Hogwarts in the Headmaster’s office. Ron, Hermione, and Hugo were there and they all were excited to see everybody. The office became alive with greetings and laughter. Kingsley and Minerva joined in coming from a small room off the main office. Harry noticed right away they were not as happy as they wanted him to think they were.

“What’s the problem?” asked Harry.

The room became quiet and Kingsley said, “We just learned that Rita Skeeter is here with her, Quick Quotes Quill.

Harry was indifferent to the news and asked Hugo who he was going to be rooting for. But before the boy could answer Kingsley said, “Did you hear what we said Harry? Rita Skeeter is here.”

Harry looked at the man with fire in his eyes and ice in his voice, “Yes, Kingsley, I am blessed with acute hearing so I did hear what was said. I hope you don’t expect me to throw her a ticker tape parade, because that won’t happen. Why wouldn’t you expect her to be here since she is obviously not in prison where she belongs? She fancy’s herself as a writer, so this would be the most logical place for her to be.”

Harry looked at Ginny and his demeanor softened. “Honey, you and Lily better get to your Press Box before Rita takes your spot. Don’t let her near Lily.”

Hermione said that she would be sitting with them to keep Rita away from Ginny and Lily. I’ve got her under constant observation, and so I figured I could do the observing during the game so I can sit with Ginny and Lily.”
Harry nodded his head and thanked her. He grinned proudly as Ginny spoke up saying, “I can take care of Rita my own self. But I welcome your company, Hermione.” The three left and found Percy on his way up to the office. He stepped in but before he said anything; Harry offered him his hand. “Congratulations on your promotion, Percy, its well deserved.” After thanking Harry, he took Hugo to sit with his cousins.

Harry turned and glared at Kingsley when he said a detachment of Aurors would accompany them to his Box. “There have been many times when I needed the help of my Aurors but wasn’t allowed to have them. I don’t need them to get me to my seat.”

When nothing was said, Harry cracked up laughing in genuine glee. “It isn’t for my protection, it’s for hers! You think I’ll lose my mind and give up finally being able to be with my family and live a normal life so I can have revenge on that witch!” He laughed for a moment longer and then stopped. His demeanor became scary and his hair blew from his face. He looked at Kingsley and said ever so quietly, and just barely audible, “This proves to me that you know she is guilty and you know it was wrong to let her go free. Well fine then. Once again I am left to do the dirty work. I’ll put her away, but it will be legal. I have a life to live, and nothing will take it away from me. She doesn’t need protecting from me; not until she does something illegal.” He waited incase Kingsley had something to say; but the man stood silent. “I’m ready to find our seats.”

Harry brushed past Kingsley and left the room with everyone running after him. At the foot of the Gargoyles guarding the entrance a group of eighteen Aurors became alert and stepped aside quickly when they tried to keep him from moving on without them leading. They instead walked briskly beside him as if they were escorting him. The look on Harry’s face was stern and unyielding. They arrived at the Quidditch Pitch quite sooner than a normal stroll would get them there. In the corner of his eye he saw Rita with her Quick Quotes Quill and he fumed more intense, but his gait didn’t slow any at all. She called out to him; however he just turned his head to look at her and kept on his angry way. He didn’t have the time of day for her.

Just a few more yards and he’d be in the Quidditch Pitch. He felt pain and his throat began to swell shut. His quick strides slowed and then stopped. His breathing became deep and slow. Images from his memory jumped before him and his knees became weak. He was cold but sweat formed on his brow. The sounds of the stadium grew faint like he was far away and under water. Everything was turning dark. And then there was nothing.

Ronon caught Harry before he fell to the ground and Kingsley led everyone to a section of the bleachers where they could get under them and out of sight of everyone there. Jack asked what happened to him. “Did someone curse him?”

Daniel said, “It looked like he was terrified and passed out.”

Rodney shook his head and said it was impossible. “Harry is the bravest man in the world; he can’t have just passed out.”

The doctor pointed to Harry and lifted a lock of his hair from the hairline over his ear to show them. It was white as a dove. “Harry just faced everything he went through all at once without warning that it was coming. Nobody could stand up under that pressure.” Sudden stress of a catastrophic event has been known to cause hair to turn white instantly. There was a reporter whose hair turned white instantly when the Hindenburg crashed.” He got his small instrument from his pocket and scanned Harry. He waved some smelling salts under Harry’s nose and Harry finally turned his head from them. He opened his eyes and stared into space.

Ron put his hand on his friend and gently shook his shoulder. Harry blinked his eyes and rolled them to look at Ron.

“Harry, you fainted mate; are you ok?” he said with a crooked smile on his face. He couldn’t believe Harry had fainted, but actually felt kind of good about it.

Carson looked up quickly from his instrument and said, “He’s been seriously poisoned.”

Harry reached up handing a small bottle to the doctor. Carson took the bottle and Harry winced as he moved his head slowly to one side and exposed his neck. He reached up and pinched something, jerked and pulled his hand away. The doctor immediately saw what was in his hand and put it in the bottle and then asked John for his pocket knife. John opened it and handed it to him while he watched closely. Carson put the knife to Harry’s throat and scraped a wasp stinger and a pincer from Harry’s neck and put it in the bottle with the wasp and then put the lid on it. He took a penlight and looked carefully at Harry’s neck and told Harry what he found and asked if he had medicine for it. “I need to get it in you now, or you’ll surely die within the minute.”

Harry opened his hand part way but lost consciousness. The doctor took the bottle that appeared and poured it down Harry’s throat. After a moment Harry miraculously stood up and told Kingsley the wasp was Ludo Bagman. Kingsley stopped reaching for the bottle and froze in the position he was in. “Harry, don’t ask me to kill it. We don’t know for sure its Bagman; it can’t be; it’s probably just a wasp.”

Harry said, “I didn’t say to kill it. But put a lid on it so it doesn’t fly away, because if it does, I will kill it. We can’t let him escape again.” The doctor spoke up saying, “Nobody needs to kill it because Harry killed it when he pulled it off of him. Well, it isn’t dead yet, but is as good as dead. It will die in a matter of minutes.”

Kingsley grabbed the jar and threw it to the ground breaking the jar open. Just as the doctor had said, Bagman appeared before them all; a lifeless man. He opened his eyes and looked right at Harry and said, “How do you always win? It was Rita’s idea; I told her it wouldn’t work.” A wand appeared in his hand that happened to be lying in the position to point it at Harry without moving and smiled. Harry’s wand challenged Ludo’s wand and it came flying to Harry. Ludo had voiced a killing curse but then there was nothing. He was dead.

Kingsley waved his wand over the body and it disappeared. Ron had his hand over his mouth as did, nearly everyone else. The sight hadn’t been pleasant to see. Bagman was crushed flat and his entrails were on the ground in front of him. The doctor asked for Harry’s Dittany and put it on Harry’s neck. “He bit you seven times on the neck and stung you the same amount of times. These bites and stings were directly over your jugular vein and the venom that was injected into the bloodstream closed off the oxygen to your brain. You didn’t pass out; you were going into anaphylactic shock and you were just about dead.”

Harry suddenly made a phone call to the prison and asked some questions. He waited a moment and then said, “Isolate him and call me as soon as you find out.”

Harry said, “Nobody says anything to anybody about this. I don’t want Rita to know until I tell her. Let’s find out how she reacts when she can’t find Ludo after I force her hand. She’ll tip her hand, and we’ll also see if her dear daughter is involved in anyway. Let’s go sit down before I fall down. I’m really not feeling up to this game so let’s make the best of me having to be here.” They started to make their way to the steps while Harry finished plans with Kingsley and Ron.

They started the long assent to the top only to be stopped on the first step by some officials. One of them spoke to Kingsley who then shook his head, no, emphatically. The official said something else and then Kingsley turned to look apologetically at Harry and said, “They insist that you come out on the field and meet the players and then you will throw the Quaffle up to start the game.”

“I can barely stand Kingsley; tell them I’m not well.”

An official stepped in and said, “Come on Mr. Potter, don’t be shy.” He pulled Harry’s arm and took him to the field. The stadium erupted with clapping and shouting, and screaming from the young ladies. Harry stopped and forced the official to stop. Harry told the man to bring the teams to him or let him go.

“Please sir, I really am not well, and I need to sit down.” He tried to smile but wasn’t able to pull off a very convincing one. The man for the first time looked concerned and waved the teams over. They both came over enthusiastically and lifted Harry to their shoulders and carried him to the center of the field.

The officials ran to them and stood by Harry when they put him down. The lead official put his arm around Harry to help him stand. It looked as if he just needed to stand close because of the crowd noise. As he called off the names of the teams each one shook his hand and it was then they saw how badly he looked. Harry smiled genuinely at the players and wished them luck.

Finally the official held the microphone between them and said, “Mr. Potter, we are honored you came today especially since you are not feeling well. What is it like for you to be here today after only last month defeating Tom Riddle on this very spot?

Harry couldn’t believe he asked such a stupid question. “Well, to be honest, it’s a bit overwhelming for me. I still haven’t fully recovered yet. And then can you believe it; a wasp tried to make a meal of me just as I was entering the Quidditch Pitch a little while ago.” He lifted his hair and turned to show the bites and stings. It was quite hideous looking; the reason for the crowds groans when the camera zoomed in on a tight shot. “I’ll be ok; I can’t say the same for the wasp though. Anyway; I’m glad the event has been planned and so many people were able to come on such late notice. I’d like to wish both teams a fun and safe game. And I hope the fans have a good time with their families and friends while they watch and enjoy the game. I encourage everyone to greet the people around you. Introduce yourselves with a warm smile and a handshake. Good will towards your fellow man starts within your own heart.”

There was a flurry of movement in the stands as people did indeed greet their neighbors. Harry smiled and then after a moment for them to settle down for the game he took the Quaffle, shook hands with the official and then with all he had left in him; threw the ball high into the air and then disappeared.

The crowd roared and Harry appeared atop the stands in the Ministers box. Harry saw his sons watching excitedly in all directions. He then realized they were wondering where he went. “James, Albus?”

The boys turned and jumped the bleachers between them and stood on either side of their dad and hugged him tightly. Harry smiled wide and hugged them both. A roar from the crowd broke up the father and sons reunion and Harry nodded to the game and said, “Find your seats and enjoy the game. I’ll be right here. I can see the game on the screens, which is fine for me this time.”

The boys went to the rails and watched just as Harry had done when he watched the World Cup just before starting his fourth year at Hogwarts. Thankfully; Kingsley was giving his guests a running commentary of what was going on in the game. Harry watched some, but the fast movement mostly made him dizzy. He had a delightful time watching his sons enjoy the game. Albus was answering questions John asked him and John was nodding his understanding without taking his eyes off the game. Harry grinned knowing John was picking his favorite team and players by the questions he was asking. Jack too was doing the same with James. It didn’t surprise Harry in the least that the two, both picked Beaters as their favorite players. They are warriors and their objectives are always to defend, aid, and strategize for the advancement of the team. He also knew they would pick the Irish for their team; being loyal to the team because Harry had played on their team last month. He observed Teal’c and Ronon who he knew would root for the Chasers because of the type of warrior they are. Their alien ways are to strike as many points against the opposing force as often and quickly as possible. Both Sam and Teyla were able to watch the whole team as one, rooting loudly for anything each team player did. Rodney and Daniel were both fascinated with the game and ducked instinctively when anyone on either team flew close to their seat.

The game was still going strong three hours later. The Snitch had shown itself many times, but was able to elude its capture. The score was even and hard played. Harry took a phone call on his cell phone and a look of distain came over his face.

“Take him to our, safe house, and station two guards outside his room and two inside. Get our approved healer to take care of him and make him as comfortable as you can.” Harry nodded for Kingsley and Ron to come over to him, but an announcement stopped him from talking to them.

The announcement coming over the speakers said for the first time ever a timeout was in effect for people to get something to eat or drink from the vendors making their ways through the crowds. “Make it count people; this timeout will last for thirty minutes.”

Suddenly Winky appeared with a huge picnic basket and set it down next to Harry. Harry picked the small elf up and held her tight to him. He knew she was afraid and he wanted her to feel safe. “Winky, you didn’t need to bring this. Let me take you home. Thank you for thinking of us, but we would have been fine.” Her head was buried in his chest and all she did was nod her head.

Harry told Kingsley he was taking Winky home and he’d be right back. Just as he disappeared he saw Rita Skeeter enter the box. A minute later after Harry had Winky safely settled at home he returned to the box and found Rita talking to Kingsley. He wasn’t allowing her entrance and was telling her she would have to get another story; she couldn’t talk to anyone there.
She looked around the man and saw Harry and pushed her way to him. “Harry, Harry, a quick word for the press if you don’t mind… just a few yes and no questions.”

Harry stood in front of her and folded his arms across his chest. His gaze was foreboding to say the least. She spoke bravely to keep from showing how intimidated she felt. She glanced at her quill and parchment floating at her side and writing of its own accord, and then she cleared her throat.

“Let’s begin; shall we? Now, first off my readers would like you to know we are delighted to see you here and looking so, so healthy. But you said you were stung by a wasp. I hope you aren’t allergic or anything. You look white as a ghost.”

Harry didn’t open his mouth or change the look on his face. She stammered for a moment; words not coming to her. It was probably the first time in her life she didn’t know what to say.

“So, I was wondering about any reservations you had about coming today.” She looked at him expecting an answer but didn’t get any. “Have you had reservations about being here today?” she asked annoyingly.

“Yes”

“Oh! Ok, now we’re getting somewhere. What were they, the reasons you didn’t want to come today?”

Harry stood unmoving and unwilling to speak. He just stared at her calmly.
She stomped her foot in anger and said with malice in her voice, “You said you got stung by a wasp, is that correct?”

“Yes”

She stood and smiled wickedly. “Are you going to tell us about it?”

“No”

The irate witch glared at Harry and tapped her toes impatiently. Kingsley grinned and held his fingers over his mouth; in a manly sort of, I’m deep in thought here type of way, to keep from being seen.

James huffed and said, “Is she done, I’m hungry!”

They all laughed with the exception of Rita Skeeter and Harry. “Here, here!” said Ronon exuberantly, and opened the basket Winky brought.

Harry sighed and quietly said, “My children are hungry, ask what you will and then leave so they don’t get sick eating in your presence.”

“Why were you being so obstinate?”

Harry answered, “After you forced your way in here against our wishes you said you had some yes / no questions. I answered your yes / no questions. Now ask what you really wanted to ask.”

“Very well then, let’s get to it. You said you were attacked by a wasp, how are we to believe it was a wasp?”

Harry’s eyes glinted with the fire that burned in them. “It was identified by everyone here except my sons. What does it matter what stung me?”

“Oh…it doesn’t, I’m just being thorough. So, this wasp you claim stung and bit you, where is it now?”

Harry shook his head, “I have no idea, nor do I care; it’s just gone.”

“And where did this alleged incident occur?” The wicked smile returned to her bright red painted lips.

“It was right when I turned my head to you when you called out to me. So, I’m thinking it was because I didn’t see the wasp coming because I was looking at you and that’s when it found its way to my neck. Odd this, I could have swore I heard, “I’ve got you now Potter” and it sounded just like your husband, Ludo Bagman. I figured it was all in my head because I had so much trepidation of going into the Quidditch Pitch. You can understand of course why I had so many misgivings about that. What with you and your lousy husband, who is in Azkaban, causing all the pain and suffering I went through.”

“You should watch where you’re going Potter.”

“You can count on it that I will. Is there anything else?”

“You said, “I’ll be ok; I can’t say the same for the wasp though.” What did you mean by that?”

“Well, I meant that a doctor happened to be with me at the time and he took care of me, but I’m pretty sure I smashed the wasp between my thumb and finger when I pulled it off my neck, so it naturally isn’t going to be ok. I can’t imagine your readers being interested in any of this though. Maybe we should talk about something else. Why don’t you tell us how you and your dreadful daughter are doing now that you have hood winked the Wizengamot into thinking you were innocent of everything. How does your husband, Ludo Bagman feel being locked up in Azkaban knowing you two are as guilty as he is and yet you’re free? When is the last time you saw him; your husband the murderer? Or have you neglected him, forgotten him. People tend to be forgotten in Azkaban or anywhere actually. It’s like they didn’t exist. They just don’t remember no matter how important or prominent they were. Look at Florean Fortescue, he disappeared years ago. Many think he joined Riddle, or that he was murdered by Riddle. I’ve never been comfortable with either theory. This past month I’ve started searching for him. But I digress; my point was that Ludo could vanish … of neglect from you.”

Rita’s face contorted with rage and she swore at him. She stammered odd incoherent words and phrases and then pulled herself together; only still enraged. She changed the subject screeching, “You are the murderer! You murdered my son in the mine along with that army of Goblins!”

Harry calmly said, “Why would you say that? Your son happens to be a great friend of mine, and I certainly have not nor will ever kill him.”

Rita was shocked into silence for a moment and then said, “Not that one, I gave him up the moment he was born. I’m talking about Levi; you met him down in the Goblins mine. You can’t get out of murdering him and I will see you die for it! Don’t pretend you don’t know what I’m talking about!”

Harry looked puzzled and said, “What are you going on about Skeeter?”

“You know very well what I’m talking about! You told us that you killed him!
You admitted it!”

“Us who; who do you claim I told that to?” asked Harry innocently.

“The day of the Quidditch game last month; you told Ludo, me and Harriet that you killed Levi. Filch was there too; he heard you too! You will not get away with it!”

Harry became defensive and said, “Who would take your word for it, Filch was working for me, and Ludo is in Azkaban, and your daughter is as much of a liar as you are. She wasn’t even there! What proof do you have?”

I heard you! My daughter did hear you! She was in her Ladybug Animagus form and besides that we have it on video!”

Harry continued to be quarrelsome and stood inches from her face and yelled, “You’re crazy, you don’t know what you’re saying. You weren’t even in your right mind! You don’t have a leg to stand on, you don’t remember because Ludo had you under the Imperious Curse! He used the Obliviate spell on you over and over! Your brain is addled! Your threats are empty; you can’t touch me!”

Rita drew her wand and put the tip hard against Harry’s chest and his shirt began to smolder. “No he didn’t. I remember everything because I was his partner. We planned everything! I was the brains of the team!”

She stopped when Harry quickly snatched her wand from her and said, “Threatening and injuring an officer of the Ministry is an offense that carries jail time, and you’ve just done both.”

Harry made eye contact with John for a second and then turned his back on Rita as if walking away from her. He turned back around quickly when Harriet Porter appeared right before everyone. She put her hand over Rita’s mouth. “Mother, shut up, he’s goading you into-” She shoved a pill in her mother’s mouth and said, “Mother forgot to take her medicine this morning. Being unjustly accused and spending time in Azkaban has made her ill. Please excuse us, we’ll be leaving now. Come on mother, let’s go home.”

Harriet hobble marched her mother towards the opening to leave, but Rita stopped and tried to look around even though Harriet was still pushing her out of the Minister’s Box they were in. They both stopped astonished over the scene Kingsley began making with Harry.

Kingsley grabbed Harry roughly by the arm and pulled him back shaking his head. Harry looked at him in disbelief. “We can arrest her and her daughter, she just confessed! You heard her!”

“We’ll talk about this later. I need to start the game; the players have returned to the field.” Harry vehemently objected and tried to step towards Rita. Kingsley unceremoniously shoved him backward and told him to settle down before he had him removed.

Rita and Harriet both grinned more wickedly than he had ever seen them and left.

Carson stepped over a couple seats to get to Harry and took his blood pressure and temperature. “Son, you need to drink more of that potion you took earlier, and then you need to try to sit calmly for a while. You should be home in bed, but I know that isn’t going to happen.” He glared at Kingsley and said, “You didn’t need to be so rough, you nearly put him in a coma from Toxin shock.” He took the Dittany from Harry and put it on the burn on his chest.

Harry drank the potion Carson spoke of and sat down looking no less dangerous than he looked when Kingsley stopped him from arresting Rita and Harriet.

John came over and sat beside Harry with a grin. Harry grinned as well, “Did you get it?”

John nodded his head and held out a scroll of parchment and a quill. “It put up a little struggle, but I’m bigger than it is.”

Harry took the parchment and read it. “She had no idea I put the Thief’s Downfall spell on it; the dry one that is. I couldn’t have the box flooded. It couldn’t hide the truth and it couldn’t embellish on what she said. It recorded everything that was said.”

Kingsley nodded his head, “That was quite the performance Harry. I was beginning to think you changed your mind and wanted to arrest her right then. Now will you tell me why you didn’t give me the signal to let you arrest her?”

Harry became especially somber and said, “I want proof that she knew what she was doing when she killed Madam Hooch. I don’t want her arrested just because we have proof of conspiracy and all that other stuff. I want proof she murdered her. I will find a way to make her willingly confess everything. Madam Hooch deserves a proper burial ceremony, and her family needs to be proud of her brave deed.”

Harry looked longingly at the basket and said he’d love something to eat. John picked up the basket and said he’d join him. “I don’t think Winky knew you were going to have all these Aurors here and didn’t prepare enough.”
Harry chuckled when he saw Ron and Rodney roll their eyes at each other and swallow the last of their second sandwich they had each just eaten. He asked James and Albus if they had enough to eat and they turned and answered yes. Harry doubted they would have stopped to eat even if they hadn’t. He was glad to see them having so much fun. Harry asked everyone else if they needed anything else to eat and Jack said he could eat a piece of cake if there was any around.

Harry held out his hand and a piece of paper and a pen appeared. He wrote something down and then made a paper airplane out of it. He waved his wand over it while he said something nobody could make out and then flew the paper plane away. Pretty soon a young man entered the box and went directly to Harry with a large bag and some drinks. The young man thanked Harry when he paid him and gave him a generous tip. Then he was surprised when Harry offered him his hand and said, “Johnny, you look great. How have you been; it’s been a while since I’ve seen you. How goes the shoe shine business?”

Johnny smiled from ear to ear and said, “I’m doing just fine sir. I didn’t think you’d remember me.”

“How could I not remember the best shoe shine man there has ever been? Would you like to stay and watch the rest of the game with us?”

Harry’s invitation was genuine and his smile was warm. Johnny looked at his watch and said, “I’d like that sir. I just got off my shift when we got your order. Dad said I could knock off after I was done. I just want to make sure I have enough time to make out a business outline to present to a loan officer first thing in the morning. I’m starting my own business if I qualify for a loan. I mean, the bank wants to make sure my business will be a sound investment.”

James suddenly turned and stared at Johnny. “Excuse me, but I know who you are. Your younger brother is the Captain of my Quidditch team! He spoke very highly of you when I tried out.”

The young man blushed and thanked James for telling him and wished him luck on his team.”

Harry and Johnny talked for quite a while during which time Harry ate and then started writing down things now and then. Pretty soon he said he would meet Johnny first thing in the morning to help him get his business license.
Harry was really getting weary and was feeling the need to be home in bed. He started thinking of the pictures in the Hogwarts Headmaster’s office. He wouldn’t be able to go up there and talk to them after the game; it was dragging on forever it seemed. He thought, ‘At least I’ll soon be able to talk to Florean Fortescue.’ All at once James shouted, “The Chasers are trying the Harry Potter Broom Walk!”

Harry’s attention flew back to the game and he said, “What are they doing; the what?”

His sons explained excitedly that both teams wanted the Minister of Magic to persuade the Gaming Wizards to put off the game until their players could learn to fly barefoot and standing on the broom surfboard style like he did when he played last month. “The term is called, “The Harry Potter Broom Walk” after the man who invented it, you!”

Harry stood next to the rails to watch but sat heavily on the bleacher behind him. His face was ivory white and his head lulled to his shoulders for a moment and then he sat forward with his elbows on his knees and his face in his hands. Ronon and Teal’c lifted him bodily from the bleacher and sat him a few rows back safely away from the rail. He smiled and thanked them. “I just forgot how dizzy I am. I’m ok.”

Kingsley sat beside him looking serious. “Are you sure you’re alright son? I can take you home if you need to go.”

“I’m fine Kingsley, thank you though.”

The elder man nodded his head but refrained from smiling. “Do you feel up to telling me what that business was about…with Rita? You mentioned Florean Fortescue.”

Harry nodded his head and acknowledged Ron with a quick nod as Ron turned and sat on the bleacher below Harry only facing him. “I was wondering the same thing.”

“It hit me all at once that since Ludo was here, then why hadn’t we received a message from Azkaban reporting him missing. I called and asked if he was there and they checked on him. They said he was there. So I figured they pulled the same trick Crouch and his wife pulled to get Jr. out of Azkaban. I told them to search him and isolate him in a different room, and to keep an eye on him and to let me know if he changed into anyone else. They called back later, just before Winky brought the food and said he had changed into a very confused and senile acting Florean Fortescue.”

Ron shook his head in amazement and Kingsley was speechless.
Harry continued, “So I’m thinking that although this plan seems to be hastily thrown together, that the plan was to kill me here from an apparent fatal allergic reaction to a bee sting. I’m thinking the Wizengamot has been Imperioused since they let Rita and Harriet free.”

Kingsley nodded his head and said, “I have been investigating that possibility ever since they made me turn them loose. As of this morning all of them are being deprogrammed from some very deep mind washing; the same as Lucius Malfoy had been done to him; only not nearly as long and stringent.”

Harry shook his head and glared at Kingsley for a short minute. “Kingsley, you need to help me instead of trying to protect me. When you know something like what you just told me, you need to tell me because it will help me get over my emotional hang-ups. Don’t let me think I’m all alone in things again.”

He sighed and said, “So, I think it is safe to assume that whoever, or there successors’, created the Goblin Army, are still at large. I have some leads I can share with you, but not here. Can you two come over tomorrow afternoon? You should go ahead and watch the game now anyway. We won’t be able to keep the discovery of Florean quiet very long. I’ll come up with a Sting to goad Rita into making her move. She’ll discover somehow that Ludo has escaped from Azkaban. She’ll try her best to do it in a way to make us look incompetent.”

Ron chanced a look at Kingsley, thinking Harry wasn’t watching him. When he saw Harry’s quizzical look he just half grinned and said he’d be there after lunch.

The game lasted four more hours and then it was all over. The Irish caught the Snitch in a spectacular move and the crowd went wild. The Veelas swarmed the field and sudden lunacies developed from hundreds of men and older boys. Harry grinned happily at his sons who had begun boasting of muscles and manly physics.

A few seconds later Ginny and Lily ran into the box and Ginny smiled at her husband, thankful he wasn’t being seduced by the unnatural beauties. Lily announced to her brothers to stop acting stupid or she was going to write an article about them and put it in the Daily Profit. She pulled them down and they both shook their heads and turned red in the face after realizing they had embarrassed themselves.

Finally after the award was given and all the interviews were done, Harry dismissed his Aurors to go home and Kingsley left as well. Harry put his hand on Ron’s arm with enough pressure to make him turn to him. “Ron, what is it? Is something wrong, do you need me for something? You know I’ll do anything in the world for you.”

Ron swallowed and looked sick. He glanced at Hermione and then back to Harry. He looked even worse when Harry became concerned and put both hands on his shoulders and looked him straight in the eyes and said, “Brother, what is it? Do you want to go someplace and talk? There is surely something I can say or do to help you with whatever is wrong. I know; you guys come over now. We’ll talk it over and figure everything out.”

Ron sighed and nodded his head looking totally sick. Ron left with his family, and Harry, after they said goodbye to his sons, took his family and friends home. Winky announced that she prepared a late dinner so they all went to the dining room and sat down to eat.

Harry asked John if they were going to be able to spend much time with them and John shook his head. “We’ll need to leave as soon as we eat; unless you need us.”

Harry said he understood, but was visibly disappointed. They made the most of their short visit and talked about the game they watched. Teyla said, “It was exciting to watch. I enjoyed it very much, it is fast and furious.”
It was with much disappointment that Jack said they really needed to go. Harry walked them out to the Puddle jumper and allowed Carson to look at his neck one more time before they left. He wasn’t happy with the looks of it and said, “Harry, if this doesn’t look any better in the morning; call me or Jennifer.”

Harry tried for a grin and half nodded his head, “I’ll be fine; goodnight everyone.” He looked at John wishing he could stay. He was feeling uneasy about whatever was going on with Ron. “Don’t run into any stars on your way home.” He waved and stepped away from the Puddle jumper and watched them leave.

When Harry went back into the house he noticed Hugo and Lily running to the playroom in the basement all excited they had time to play before Hugo had to leave.

Winky came in the room and asked if they needed her for anything. Harry sat on the arm of the chair he was accustomed to sitting in, but couldn’t because Ginny was there. He took her hand gently and asked was she ok from being at the game today. She smiled adoringly at Harry and said she was fine. “Winky is being sad Master got hurt though, and his beautiful hair is white.”

Harry’s eyebrows knitted together and asked her what she meant. Ginny summoned a mirror and held it in front of Harry so he could see the strip of ivory white hair.

At first he could only stare at it. Then he said, “I don’t know how, or when this happened. Do you-” he looked at Ron and stopped in mid sentence. Is this why you laughed at me? When you…woke me; you were laughing… You said I fainted.” Harry’s memory played over what happened and he got up and walked to the big picture window and looked out into the dark.

Finally he turned back around and quietly said, “I’m sorry I didn’t mean to think about myself. Ron, what is the matter? Something is wrong and I said I’d help you no matter what. So,” he smiled warmly with only a hint of sadness escaping, “what is it?”

Once again Ron looked sick. Harry became very concerned and sat on the arm of the couch next to where Ron was sitting. He put his hand on his shoulder to give him emotional support. Harry quickly looked at Hermione to see how she was reacting. If something was dreadfully wrong with his health, surely she would be upset. But Hermione just looked mostly sympathetic and also a bit impatient.

Ron sighed deeply and then blurted out what was troubling him. “Look mate, I decided to give up being an Auror and work in the Joke shop with George full time.”

Harry let out a sigh of relief and smiled. “Ron; what’s up with all the drama? I thought you were terminally ill or something. Were you trying to make the rest of my hair turn white?”

Ron’s eyebrows went to the top of his forehead and grinned cautiously. Then he saw the realization on Harry’s face.

Harry stared at him without saying anything and then quietly said, “Have I mistreated you, Ron? I mean first you gave up being my partner in the Detective agency, and now you want to quit being an Auror. If you’ll tell me what I’ve done; if I am too hard on you… or … is it me?” He watched Ron and then Hermione and said, “It is me… because I’m dangerous; a monster.” He smiled hopefully and said, “Look Ron, I don’t have those dangerous nightmares anymore. And I’m not a danger to be around anymore. Everything is different now. Ron, I …”

Ron interrupted saying, “It isn’t something I just decided to do mate. I’ve been working at the joke shop for, well, ever since you got back. I am only part time as an Auror until I tell you. I told Kingsley two years ago when you disappeared that as soon as you got back I might quit. And then what happens right away, but my family gets attacked to get back at you. I nearly killed you! My son was turned infantile! And this today with Bagman and Rita; you killed him without a thought, and Rita wants to kill you. Harry, I’ve had enough. You want to get involved in finding out who created the Goblin Army. You can’t just let it go. You are a magnet for trouble, and I need to think of my family for a change. I’ll not be putting them in harm’s way on this wild goose-chase you’re dead set on.”

Harry stood and returned to the window and looked out into the night. Another storm was moving in fast. It looked to be the same as last night’s storm. Somehow it didn’t size up to the storm that was thrashing his heart apart right now though. He heard Ginny ask why they hadn’t said anything about Ron wanting to quit before. She was angry and he didn’t want hard feelings in the family.

He turned around and said, “Don’t worry about it Honey, its fine. Ron, don’t worry about coming over tomorrow with Kingsley. I wasn’t going to go back to work for another six weeks. Would you be willing to work as an Auror until then? Not on special assignment with me, but just a normal Auror so we’re not shorthanded?” He looked uncertain that Ron would do it and felt awkward when he didn’t answer. “Never mind, it’s ok, I’ll go back to work tomorrow. Consider yourself retired from the Ministry. You are no longer an Auror. Thank you Ron; for your hard work all these years. You were a fine Auror, you can be proud of your service to the people we serve. It was an honor and a pleasure to work with you.” He grasped Ron’s hand and shook it for a minute.

Harry stopped and turned to look out the window again. This was not the time for his emotions to start acting up again. With his back still turned to Ron, Hermione, and Ginny; Harry quietly said, “Just so you know; I didn’t just kill Bagman without a thought today. I didn’t know what was happening to me. When Rita called my name I turned to look at her and that’s when I felt intense pain, it paralyzed me literally, and I couldn’t breathe. I thought I heard Bagman but I thought I was having a stroke or something from how terrorized I was to go into the Quidditch Pitch. Then Carson woke me, I felt something crawling on my neck. I forced myself to get it and I squeezed it because it stung and bit me again. I would have died if Carson hadn’t been there. I am not a monster. I think my reaction was the same as anyone would have reacted.”

The rain was pouring down in sheets and the thunder and lightning was fierce. Without turning to face them Harry rubbed his arm across his eyes and said with a raspy voice, “I’m going to go down and check Chevron. I’ll see you guys later. Don’t wait up for me Honey.” He walked out into the night oblivious to the storm raging around him; but well aware of the one that tore his friend from his heart. The destruction was devastating to him. How would he ever be able to repair the hurt he felt? He was glad Ron told him how he felt. He was never able to assign anything to Ron that would cause him to have to work past five when he was supposed to go home. He had to walk on eggshells with Ron in case he angered Hermione one way or another. It would be good to be able to work without those worries. But, it still hurt that he thought this month Ron was eager to help him find the creator of the Goblin Army; to work side by side, and then to find out this was the very thing that caused him to make the decision to give up being an Auror hurt worse.

Sometime later he realized he was on the furthest side of his property. He hadn’t gone to the barn or the stable. He had walked until he was stopped by the fence on the north boundary. He remembered one other time he had been upset and walked to this very spot. He found refuge that night by talking to Crookshanks when he was just suddenly there. Crookshanks wouldn’t be showing up this time; Hermione had given him his freedom. Harry wondered if he had ever found the people who killed Moondrop and their kittens. He looked at his watch and seen that it was three o’clock in the morning. His body ached and his neck was stiff. His throat was closing up on him. The storm was still raging and he needed to get home to be with Ginny and Lily. What if Lily was afraid because he wasn’t there? Ginny would have called him. She was letting him sort things out, but, yes, she would have called him if he was needed.

Harry appeared inside their bathroom and took off his dripping wet clothes and took a bottle of medicine from the cabinet. He took it and immediately began to feel his throat return to a more normal state of wellness. Harry caught a glimpse of his image and did a double take. He was just never going to get used to that white strip of hair. He got in the hot shower washing all the mud from him and then just stood under the water letting it warm his body. When he felt warm enough he got out and slipped on his robe and looked in on Lily. She was fine so he went to his bedroom and disrobed and climbed in bed with his wife. Ginny rolled over and snuggled into his side. She put her hand over his heart, and he smiled putting his hand over hers. His eyes went closed and he slept without dreams.



The End

A/N All the names for the past Ministers of Magic and Headmasters came from Harry Potter Wiki.
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